5E Does the world exist for the NPC's? - Page 2
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  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Vargas View Post
    More DMs than you might think are frustrated novelists.
    Meh. Almost every fan of anything in the sci-fi/fantasy genres is a frustrated novelist.

    I meant the question a bit more as a diagnostic for the individual.
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  2. #12
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    The world exists primarily for the PCs and secondarily for the NPCs. In 13th Age, the players exercise some authorial control over the setting, especially as it relates to their own characters. Currently, my group is running through Eyes of the Stone Thief, and we decided that the "Priestess" NPC was instead, in our campaign, the "Mystic", a woolly-headed Deepak Chopra figure. The NPCs, even the most powerful NPCs in the setting, are there for the PCs and the players.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Umbran View Post
    Meh. Almost every fan of anything in the sci-fi/fantasy genres is a frustrated novelist.
    I suspect that may be overstating it, but have never seen any hard data. But, assuming that's the case, wouldn't they generally answer 'yes' to your question, because it's a creative outlet, rather than because "The world exists for the NPCs?"

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Vargas View Post
    More DMs than you might think are frustrated novelists.
    Those are the guys that blow their stack when the players have the temerity to get off the railroad. How dare you mess with my carefully laid plot?! Save or die!!!

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Vargas View Post
    More DMs than you might think are frustrated novelists.
    Perhaps all novelists are just frustrated GMs.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Umbran View Post
    Well, ask yourself this - would you write the world, and the associated stories of how it progresses around and with the NPCs, if you didn't have PCs playing in the world?
    If you don't have PCs, then they aren't NPCs, they're just Cs.
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  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Umbran View Post
    Well, ask yourself this - would you write the world, and the associated stories of how it progresses around and with the NPCs, if you didn't have PCs playing in the world?
    It's a common confusion, but for the purpose of this topic I think we have to be very clear - PCs don't play in the world, players do. I think it's a much less interesting question as to whether the world exists for the players. The game and thus the world exists for the game's participants.

    When we say the world exists for the PC's or the NPC's, then we have to answer what that question means, given that both are fictional. In the other thread on this topic, the original poster kindly defined what he meant by the question. In this case, we can only infer what the question of the threads topic really means.

    The truth is, many GMS do develop their game world independently of having players. Presumably they eventually want to have players, so this still means that world exists for the players, but in some since the world without players still existed for the NPCs.

  8. #18
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    When I DM, I insist that 95% of all PCs be simple peasants who have zero capacity for adventuring. When a group of players shows up and every single one of the PCs is some kind of "dark elf bard" or "hill dwarf monk" or "silver dragonborn sorcerer" or some other unrealistic character that is just awfully convenient for going on adventures, it really kills my suspension of disbelief.
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  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Celebrim View Post
    It's a common confusion, but for the purpose of this topic I think we have to be very clear - PCs don't play in the world, players do.
    With respect, I don't think anyone is confused here, any more than they are confused when they talk about killing players instead of killing PCs.

    You may find the language choice to be inaccurate, or that it conceals some other point that's valuable to make, but please don't equate casual language use to confusion.
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  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Umbran View Post
    Well, ask yourself this - would you write the world, and the associated stories of how it progresses around and with the NPCs, if you didn't have PCs playing in the world?
    Yes and no. Yes, I have things that happen off-screen often without the input of PCs. Either because the group didn't follow that path, it wasn't relative to the PCs at the moment or because it's happening between campaigns.

    For example in a recent campaign, the PCs overthrew the "false" king and put in place one of the PCs who was a legitimate heir to the throne. We did some wrap-up stuff (basically resolving how well the PC would rule the kingdom), but the false king and his allies were not completely destroyed.

    So now that particular campaign is over, but what are the repercussions? What's the long term effect? Is my new campaign (set in a nearby region) affected by the changes and how? So yes, I'm kind of writing that part of the world's story in my head, jotting notes now and then that I may or may not end up using later. I don't spend a ton of time on it, but I noodle over it sometimes on my drive into work or other times when I'm not plotting out my current campaign.

    So are the stories for the NPCs or some potential future PC group? I suspect at some point the story will be added to my overall timeline. Beyond that? Who knows. Depends on if I come up with an interesting plot line that the group wants to pursue in a future campaign or if the current campaign veers off into the unknown and bumps into it.

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