D&D 5E [+] Explain RPG theory without using jargon

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pemerton

Legend
Well, then we’re back to non-narrativist not adequately describing my “agenda.”
I really have no idea what this is supposed to mean.
I'm fairly confident that Charlaquin's post is alluding back to this:

If you come to the table with a character already in mind you’re not really developing them. The development already happened, when you were coming up with their motivations, desires, personality, and backstory. What you’re doing is thrusting a fairly well-developed character into a still-developing situation so as to showcase what you’ve already decided about them. Whereas in the “character exploration” focused scenario, you’re coming to the table with little to nothing decided about the character, and thrusting them into an already-developed scenario in search of opportunities to test them and find out, rather than show off, who they are.
In character-exploration play, the character develops by "extrapolation" from the fiction. "What would make sense for this character?"

In character-oriented narrativist play, the character develops by thematic or emotional response to the fiction. The player is making a commitment.

Which one a given table is doing in play isn't an a priori thing! I think some tables do a bit of the second from time to time, but do more of the first. For lack of a better word, it can be "safer" or "easier" or less conflictual.
 

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Campbell

Relaxed Intensity
I'm about to get a chance to play L5R 5e as a player soon. I have attached both my character sheet and the 20 questions worksheet where we nail down detailed information on who the character is. There's a strong emphasis during character creation on establishing relationships to the setting. Note how roughly 5 new NPCs come out of the character creation process. This is the sort of writeup I consider somewhat suitable for character exploration oriented play in trad game.
 

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I would submit that the bolded statement is likely to be true because few will have the frame of reference to understand what the heck most of that jargon means and it's often actively insulting to some people. I don't think it's more complicated than that. I mean, look at all the jargon in the post I just quoted. I'm pretty well versed in this stuff and my eyes just glaze right over. In most other threads, I'd just abandon it right now. For the worst offenders, I've had to block their posts just to make some threads bearable.

The thread puts forward a single request: Explain your RPG theory without using jargon. Can you? It doesn't seem like it. Perhaps it's even an impossible thing to ask. And that's okay, but some awareness of how unhelpful, even insulting, certain jargon can be seems well overdue to me. (And, again, I'm no angel, but c'mon.)

Dude...I don't for a millisecond understand what your hang up is with that post.

Insults?

Jargon?

What are you talking about? @Charlaquin liked your post. Either of you guys want to lay out for me where the insults are? Where the jargon that makes that pretty damn simple post cause your eyes to "just glaze right over?"

And most importantly...where am I wrong? Can we maybe talk game stuff?

I mean. You talk "Forge jargon being divisive." The entire orientation of this thread (yourself from the word Go) was MAXIMUM DIVISIVE. And it wasn't people using "jargon" who were bringing that reflexive orientation to the party to the people they're engaging with.

I have never once been a jerk to you without cause. Never once. Can you say the same thing?
 

hawkeyefan

Legend
And considering it is coined by the same person who said that people who like traditional games are literally suffering from brain damage, it's not a leap I'm willing to take.

(But perhaps he meant 'brain damage' as a neutral analytical term too? :unsure:)

Ah, that was just jargon for cognitive bias.


Come on, man.

You actually see fully fleshed characters in non-narrativist play. A D&D character tends to have much more predefined about their character than most narrativist characters do.

I think many D&D folks seem to predefine their input into the game; the players predefine their characters, and the DM predefines the world.

My experience with more narrative leaning games is that both the characters and the world are often much more like a sketch to start.

Neither is always true, of course, but that’s been my observation.
 

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen (She/Her/Hers)
In narrativist play it's pretty common for the characters to change. Whether or not that's organic would be a matter of opinion ("organic" also isn't a term of art in this context). The key thing is that it's not on a pre-established or pre-guided trajectory: thus, a player is accountable (in the way an author is accountable) for the way their character develops.
Well sure, you put a character up against dynamic conflict, they’re gonna change. This is like the reversed-role equivalent of the adage “no plan survives contact with the players.” Point is, I’ve stumbled on a framing that clicks for me. I grokk this idea of the players running their characters for the GM instead of the GM running their scenario for the players.
 


Ovinomancer

No flips for you!
Well sure, you put a character up against dynamic conflict, they’re gonna change. This is like the reversed-role equivalent of the adage “no plan survives contact with the players.” Point is, I’ve stumbled on a framing that clicks for me. I grokk this idea of the players running their characters for the GM instead of the GM running their scenario for the players.
But... it's not what's happening at all. I mean, maybe somewhere this happens, but that's not what's being described in GNS and isn't even remotely true for my experiences.
 

FrogReaver

As long as i get to be the frog
Well sure, you put a character up against dynamic conflict, they’re gonna change. This is like the reversed-role equivalent of the adage “no plan survives contact with the players.” Point is, I’ve stumbled on a framing that clicks for me. I grokk this idea of the players running their characters for the GM instead of the GM running their scenario for the players.
I don't think what you think is happening is actually happening.

Story Now doesn't really have a scenario in the same way that a game like D&D does.
 

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen (She/Her/Hers)
I really have no idea what this is supposed to mean.

ETA: and I'm tired and that probably reads as short. I mean I'm very confused at to what you're trying to impart. No clue. Clueless, even.
You said it’s more typical of non-narrativist play for the characters to already be developed than it is of narrativist play. Since it is not typical of my own play agenda for characters to already be developed, it doesn’t seem like this description matches up with what I prioritize in play. So while I thought I “got” it, it seems I was mistaken, and now I’m back to where I was before, staring at a me-shaped hole in GNS and not wanting to go near it cause I know how that manga ends.
 


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