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Saturday, September 5, 2009

[Game Theory] Through the looking glass-

The following is an idea that came to me after reading through Telecanter's Receding Rules site, as an aggregate of his posts, rather than any single one in particular.

* As one advances a character, one usually grows attached to that character. When Bad Things happen to that character, but these BTs are recoverable-from, or drive the character on to new directions, this is seen as a Good Thing. But, when Very Bad Things (like non-recoverable death, or loss of Paladinhood, etc) occur, these takes the jam out of the doughnut and is UnFun. Tragic, poetic, but UnFun nonetheless.


^ As one advances one's character, one learns more valuable information about the environment (village, subterranean complex, city-state, region, continent, etc.), and this Fact-Map become more valuable as more dots are connected. When a character loses a connection (allies turn to enemies, opportunities sour, locations are destroyed or gain new leadership, etc.), this is a Not Good Thing (not as bad as a Bad Thing, but not as good as a Good Thing). It makes certain resources (info, stuff, spells, etc.) less useful, and may add a vacuum-like effect that time in playing was a waste, etc. 'Suckage' is perhaps an appropriate term.

---[Looking Glass]---

@ When a character dies, they re-start in some other location, perhaps far, far away, with all of their gear and spells/etc. No Boon Suckage, no Data Suckage, just a new grid to explore. In time, and perhaps enough deaths, the character finds a link to a previous 'Dot' on their grid. Jackpot! Their experience (as a character logging Game World Hours) is not lost, their gear and abilities still function, and now, however tangentially, the map has become a little 'smaller' and less obscure.

===[Incorporation with Parties]===

If the above is done on a small-enough scale (city or 'dungeon-level'-sized), it can actually speed-up the exploration process, while still presenting a challenge to the players.
--If a character left a personal glyph where they 'awoke' and then marked each course they chose with their 'x' on the walls, etc., then other party members could find these and trace their way through the same steps. If caches were left by separated characters for their parties to find, and vice-versa, the resource-management aspect of the game is maintained if altered in an expanding-contracting manner, and the 'scouts' can play an important role in being able to act as tactical detachments (happening upon the 'enemy' from a more advantageous angle or being able to whittle the foes' rear-elements to reduce their effectiveness as the PC follows them to the Party, etc.)

Granted, this sort of thing would perhaps best function on a locale-based scale, and would diffuse the Linear Effectiveness of the Party, but if the group is quick on the uptake, the resulting 'Blip-Factor' could present some entirely unique possibilities for both individual character glory, as well as the afore-mentioned Party Boons.
--Fey glades, Eldritch ruins, Dimensional cities, Mad mazes, etc., are likely the best usage for traditional Party-centric games. But, for one-player games, this sort of play mechanism may prove useful throughout the entire run of the 'campaign'.

[Playtest Campaign][Gaming][Life] All good things...?-

A bias against Delver's/CiCi's player has become so pronounced that I am thinking of dropping the game.

The LGS owner (now without competetors, as the other LGS has closed for business) and Tybalt's player both acted in a very immature and inappropriate manner that both hurt me in my heart, as well as making me not want to run for them any longer, --at the expense of my SO (Tybalt's player's sister), and Delver's/CiCi's player.
--On top of that, due to scheduling conflicts, there don't appear to be any sessions for the rest of September.

I am also in a conflict over this weekend's C&C game.
--I would prefer to play today, but someone else cannot make it. Sunday is bad for another player, and Monday I would be in conflict with my SO's final session of her mini-'campaign'.

But, the real grey cloud is that my father is in hospice, unconscious, and has been estimated at having roughly two months left.
--The more-local sister is coming down tonight, and leaving Monday night.

What happens next determines whether or not we need to move in with my eldest sister in Boston, MA., or eke out a living here-- if that is even possible.
--You see, without my father's SS/income, the mortgage payments exceed our ability to pay, unless we can get a refinancing deal.
---Boston has many advantages in that we would be living with family we feel comfortable with, in a large Victorian, atop a hill. But, I would have to shed my firearms; and, would make things much more difficult to find employment in my field.

So, things are kind of...gritty, here.

How much further 'til I level-up?
--> soft smile <