Moving on from "GNS"

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Re: Moving on from "GNS"
« Reply #30 on: September 16, 2015, 01:51:32 PM »
Paul T: I'm here. You pretty much answered your own question, though, didn't you?

-Vincent

Man, I don't see that parenthetical as an example of assent, except trivially. Seduce/manipulate explicitly grants authority to the player of the target PC -- 'What they do is up to them.' A lot of other moves in AW explicitly grant authority as well -- most of the time to the rolling player, but sometimes to that player's target or to the MC. How much assent is built into AW's system, as opposed to authority?

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lumpley

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Re: Moving on from "GNS"
« Reply #31 on: September 16, 2015, 03:48:48 PM »
I describe a hierarchical relationship and you understand it as a dichotomy. I don't know how to say it clearly enough to overcome this.

You're thinking of assigning authority AS OPPOSED TO fostering assent, and that's not how it is. Assigning authority is a perfectly sound way to foster assent. You see it all throughout all kinds of games, including Apocalypse World and all of my games, and in any number of other social circumstances.

-Vincent

Re: Moving on from "GNS"
« Reply #32 on: September 17, 2015, 02:55:36 PM »
Bad phrasing, Vincent. I'll try again.

Seduce/manipulate is assignment of authority, not the 'thinking differently' that Paul T was looking for, so he didn't really answer his own question as you indicated before. Assume we agree that, per the relationship you've described, any element of system that assigns authority is, by definition, an element of system that fosters assent. You'd know better than me, obviously, so I happily defer to your expertise here. But AW looks like it makes heavy use of assigning authority as the primary way it fosters assent. It actually looks like assigning authority is fundamental to how AW carves up the conversation -- the PCs' responsibility is to say what their characters do, the MC's is to play the world, and sometimes the MC turns questions back on the PCs, etc.

So, what if any assent-fostering elements of AW don't boil down to assigning authority? I listed the Hx rules of character creation as a possible candidate because the rules and examples make explicit that the PCs should work out their shared history together instead of one person just dictating that she left you bleeding or whatever. So there's one, assuming you agree with that assessment. That's tiny, though, and it's pre-play, while I'm looking for stuff geared towards in-play.

If it's not something that can be parsed down into individual elements (like, if it's a confluence of different bits of the system that fosters assent without assigning authority), just say so.

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lumpley

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Re: Moving on from "GNS"
« Reply #33 on: September 17, 2015, 04:50:26 PM »
Both the carrot and the stick leave the player the authority to decide what their character does, yes, but change the context in which the player exercises their assigned authority. Assigning authority is one piece of what Seduce & Manipulate does.

-Vincent

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lumpley

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Re: Moving on from "GNS"
« Reply #34 on: September 17, 2015, 04:57:36 PM »
Here, look. In which pieces of Apocalypse World can you identify assigned authority? Basically all of them. What else can you identify in them?

-Vincent

Re: Moving on from "GNS"
« Reply #35 on: September 18, 2015, 11:08:21 AM »
First: I'm sure it doesn't, but if this whole conversation is dependent on the Big Model's conception of specific kinds of authority (eg, content vs situation vs whatever the rest are), then fine. I'm not committed to how it partitions up pieces of authority.

Here's the incomplete list you suggested of ways a game can foster assent:
Quote from: Vincent on G+
Provoking a contribution
Assigning responsibility
Providing constraint
Asking a question
Inspiring a contribution
Assigning authority
Helping form a contribution
Providing instruction
Providing a model to follow
Granting permission
Making a suggestion
Interrupting your contribution
Anticipating your contribution
Calling for affirmation
Holding your contribution in suspense

I see prompts and constraints all over the place in AW with tags, size, wants, surplus, obligations.

On the MC side, things like tell them the consequences and ask or turn their question back on them angle towards provoking a contribution, providing constraint, interrupting your contribution, granting permission...

But I can't let go, man! The running thread through these, the thing they are all predicated on, is assigning authority. The MC decides what the possible consequences are. The MC decides when to relinquish her authority and ask the players what the burn flats look like or whatever. Furthermore, we agree it's at least a piece of pretty much all the components of AW, and you've further agreed it's an important piece of pretty much every game ever. How is that not devastating to the claim that assigning authority is not a uniquely useful or fundamental way of fostering assent? I mean, I get that you don't accept my claim that these things are predicated on assigning authority (that's literally the substance of your claim). But how is that? Are you willing to, you know, show your work on this one as you did with GNS?

PS -- I know you're likely tired of this, and you've elsewhere indicated this is a super busy time for you, so if not then just say so and I'll stop bugging you. This is genuine confusion and a desire to understand on my part, not some attempt to get you riled up and certainly not to undercut what you're doing.

Paul T: Fiasco doesn't exactly ignore authority altogether. Doesn't it care about who establishes a scene and who resolves it? Doesn't it even go so far as to care about who decides who will establish and resolve?
« Last Edit: September 18, 2015, 11:28:13 AM by ColdLogic »

Re: Moving on from "GNS"
« Reply #36 on: September 18, 2015, 11:18:21 AM »
Oh wait! Some more tricksy assent-fostering but not strictly authority-assigning stuff:

__ First session MC stuff basically says 'Take what the table has contributed during character creation and run with it'.
__ Ask provocative questions and build on the answers too, same thing.

They still assign authority (in both cases, to the players), but they're tricksy about it. So there's that.

(Of all the great stuff AW has, the first session stuff is some of the best, to me. Being able to show up to a game basically cold and walk out with tons of material is priceless).

Back on topic: I'm really not satisfied with the conflict I see between 'Basically every piece of AW has assigning authority in it' vs 'AW's conversation isn't predicated on assigning authority'. Sometimes, maybe many times, pieces of AW assign authority and do other things as well (eg, your comment that assigning authority is a piece of Seduce&Manipulate). But, like, there's no 'other thing' common to every piece like assigning authority is.
« Last Edit: September 18, 2015, 03:14:52 PM by ColdLogic »

Re: Moving on from "GNS"
« Reply #37 on: September 18, 2015, 02:52:52 PM »
In my understanding, RPGs, as a conversation between us, really need several ways for me to know that you know what I just said and the same goes for you. That's why simply having the authority and saying "this is how things are" doesn't really go anywhere if there is no assent. I shouldn't have to wait for you get to your turn wielding authority to know if the things I said actually have any meaning for you.
@gamerdreamerman

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lumpley

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Re: Moving on from "GNS"
« Reply #38 on: September 18, 2015, 03:30:10 PM »
ColdLogic: Does it help if I restate it like this?

I think that, contra the Big Model, assigning authority well is not sufficient for good design.

-Vincent

Re: Moving on from "GNS"
« Reply #39 on: September 18, 2015, 03:46:34 PM »
Oh! Yeah. So it's not that assigning authority isn't necessary, it's that it's insufficient?

That's crystal clear. Thanks.

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lumpley

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Re: Moving on from "GNS"
« Reply #40 on: September 18, 2015, 04:03:49 PM »
Cool.

Now look again at Seduce & Manipulate. That move doesn't work by reassigning authority over your character, right? It leaves your authority intact, unchanged, and works by instead changing the pressures on you and the game-mechanical context in which you're exercising the authority you held all along. See it?

-Vincent

Re: Moving on from "GNS"
« Reply #41 on: September 18, 2015, 04:18:55 PM »
I do.

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lumpley

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Re: Moving on from "GNS"
« Reply #42 on: September 18, 2015, 04:28:21 PM »
Cool! That's it.

-Vincent

Re: Moving on from "GNS"
« Reply #43 on: September 19, 2015, 04:31:22 AM »
Structurally, I have the impression that Apocalypse World always relies on the MC's authority to decide which player gets to say what they do. Of course, there are guidelines to follow, but managing the spotlight can be an issue that is mostly left to the MC's judgment.

On the other hand, In A Wicked Age for example, this decision tends to just happen on the first scene (which is still very important) and afterwards the "MC" mostly just controls multiple characters and plays to their best interests. Prevalent PvP has its advantages I guess.

Way better than a glossary, I think, if someone's looking for theory work to do, would be a series of theory-minded game reviews.
I've done a few of those reviews for my Portuguese podcast and I found that I am more interested in taking some theoretical topic and seeing how a handful of games respond to it. It's something that Boardgames with Scott used to do for his last videos.
« Last Edit: September 19, 2015, 04:39:37 AM by Ricardo Tavares »
@gamerdreamerman

Re: Moving on from "GNS"
« Reply #44 on: September 22, 2015, 02:09:12 AM »
(Just wanted to post to say thank you to Vincent for responding to this series of questions. I'm not 100% sure how looking at assent rather than authority can completely render something obsolete - as opposed to, say, "Hey, here's a better way to look at this thing, because it gets us closer to the truth of the matter" - but I'm working through the G+ discussion and will think on it further.)