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    "Illusionism" and "GM force" in RPGing

    By secret backstory I mean elements of the fiction that are known only to the GM - and so in at least that sense are not part of a shared fiction - but that nevertheless are used by the GM to inform the outcomes of action resolution. Like all these things there can be complex cases and perhaps...
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    "Illusionism" and "GM force" in RPGing

    Agreed it's frequently not malice. But this is why I've been saying upthread that establishing framing and consequences are two fundamental GM skills. And with your particular example it also relates to the roll of secret backstory in action resolution - another fundamental matter. I agree...
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    Consequences of playing "EVIL" races

    Given that you seem to be agreeing with @shawnhcorey, and so - broadly - was I, you may have misunderstood my point. See my post just upthread of this one for more. As I said to shawnhcorey, if in fact I've misunderstood you I apologise.
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    Consequences of playing "EVIL" races

    What I was trying to get at is that a common response to concerns about the ways RPGs express racism and racialisation is to say But its not racist to hate an essentially evil races such as [insert fictional race here]. This is an attempt to judge the value/morality of the fiction by what is...
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    "Illusionism" and "GM force" in RPGing

    This sort of thing is hardcore RPGing suckitude. I think you're right that it's also force.
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    S/Z: On the Difficulties of RPG Theory & Criticism

    I wonder how many people posting in this thread, or those who assert that The Forge is a waste of time, ever actually posted there? I never did. I read a number of essays, and some threads that looked interesting and useful.
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    S/Z: On the Difficulties of RPG Theory & Criticism

    Not only not independent but follows from. It's right there in the rulebook - it follows from Edwards's "Story Now" essay. Unless you think that Baker was wrong when he wrote that. In the blog you link Baker outlines what he calls the Forge approach to design: "a more-or-less specified...
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    Consequences of playing "EVIL" races

    I'd probably put it slightly differently: the notion of "inherently evil races" likes orcs, etc, is a trope that draws on the same intellectual/cultural sources as does racist thinking. The fact that, in the fiction, it's not morally objectionable racism is neither here nor there. One doesn't...
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    Consequences of playing "EVIL" races

    I don't think it did. Your point was clear.
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    "Illusionism" and "GM force" in RPGing

    By disregarding it, adding to it in ways that don't honour it, ignoring it's impact on a DC (in systems that have them), etc. A classic example I have frequently seen advocated in published adventures: if the PCs kill the leader of a gang, a second-in-command takes over so the plot of the...
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    "Illusionism" and "GM force" in RPGing

    I've got no doubt Torchbearer solves them, because Luke Crane is a brilliant designer. But reverse-engineering will be tricky. Look at the agony in 5e threads over how to manage 6 to 8 encounter balance in the context of recovery clocks measured by ingame time; the accusations of "contrivance"...
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    "Illusionism" and "GM force" in RPGing

    I don't know the details of the 5e D&D social system - only your accounts of it. But if a ranger can't befriend an ordinary dog on a 12 (ie beating 50/50 odds) then something has gone wrong. We're talking a dog here, not a hell-hound. Clearly you're a chosen of Ehlonna! (Or Melora, for those...
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    "Illusionism" and "GM force" in RPGing

    You've misunderstood my position. I don't think the wandering monster thing is force - that's controversial, with the controversy turning (I think) on different understandings of how "clocks", skilled play and conceits of dungeon geography and moving PCs fro place to place interact in classic...
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    "Illusionism" and "GM force" in RPGing

    Not to turn this into an episode of "true confessions" - but thank you for posting this. This is the actual play correlate of the rules text that I, and moreso @Doug McCrae, have been posting. Or in other words - the topic of this thread isn't just idle speculation or theory craft. We're...
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    "Illusionism" and "GM force" in RPGing

    I don't want to go too far down this rabbithole - but if player input hasn't occurred yet then it can't be nullified. Nor can it be modified. It can be instigated. This is what I've been focusing on with @chaochou, and @Manbearcat around the DL dragon armies case - there are some different...
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    S/Z: On the Difficulties of RPG Theory & Criticism

    Actually, if you throw that's a no ball. And you're a "chucker" (do Americans have the slang "to chuck" meaning "to throw"?) Bowling has strict rules about how straight the arm must be throughout the delivery (not utterly, but very).
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    "Illusionism" and "GM force" in RPGing

    I agree with everything you say here about systems. (In Cortex+ the approach armies would be a Scene Distinction, and the players would have their PCs escape by wearing down the distinction - in my LotR game a couple of weeks ago this was the method used to undertake journeys (eg wear down the...
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    "Illusionism" and "GM force" in RPGing

    I know you've posted more but it's well past midnight here and so I'm only responding to this bit before sleeping. I don't think you're right here. There can be cases where content is introduced to form a narrative: eg the dragon armies (to drive the PCs to the ruined city); perhaps the secret...
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    "Illusionism" and "GM force" in RPGing

    You're putting very hard demands on the system here - completely abandoning the "ecology simulation" aspect you identified upthread. Also, turning off as a blanket rule then gives licence to the players to play carelessly on their trek through the defeated wing of the dungeon. It's only a party...
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    "Illusionism" and "GM force" in RPGing

    At least here we're in agreement and so the score remains unchanged! - I think force doesn't need to be illusionistic, though often it is. (Seriously, not keeping score, just knowing myself.) On this one, though, I'm still struggling. In the dragon army case, the moment of resolution doesn't...
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