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OT: Cultures as characters, was OT: RPGs

From:Yoon Ha Lee <yl112@...>
Date:Thursday, January 25, 2001, 20:24
On Thu, 25 Jan 2001, Vasiliy Chernov wrote:

> On Wed, 17 Jan 2001 22:35:44 -0000, Eruanno none <eruanno@...> > wrote: > > >What would be the chances of all of us CONLANGers getting together and > >forming an RPG, with little pieces of everybody's land in them... > > I'm curious if anybody ever thought of an RPG-like thing with main > characters (roles, units, or whatever) being (con)cultures (and > conlangs) rather than individual people. > > What do the RPG experts on this list think? Can a set of rules be > developed to make the game worth trying?
Depends. (I've run a couple freeform fantasy games, though not of this type!) If people are interested in reading and writing long, lovingly detailed posts about the interactions between their concultures and conlangs and the various trials and tribulations involved, it could work very well. If it degenerates to the "my conculture kicks your conculture's tail and subjects it to economic, military, cultural, technological and psychic domination" type of stupidity I've seen in a few unfortunate games (though between characters, not cultures), highly unlikely. Caveat lector: I probably have far less roleplaying experience than any number of people on this list, so take with multiple grains of salt. 1. Moderated (the equivalent of a GM) or unmoderated? 2. Statistics- or freeform-based? (Do you want to quantify various "attributes," as many market RPGs do, or leave it to the writing and description?) 3. What rules? Someone suggested Aria, which unfortunately I haven't seen (I vaguely heard of it before); offhand, other than maybe a few CRPGs I can't think of anything published that would handle something like this. Assuming you even *want* rules, OC. 4. How many people/players? Far's I can tell, unmoderated games can handle oodles of people, but people tend to bunch up into subgroups (which is not necessarily bad). If moderated, the more moderators you have (who tend to work well together and with the players), the more people can be handled. 5. One "league"/group or several? (This might be a way to handle the extreme variety in tech level, history, laws of magic/physics/whatever.) I'm sure there's more, but that's all I can think of for now.
> (I think the aims should be a bit special: just having fun while > developing a few elaborated conlangs/concultures interacting over > many centures or millennia, rather than conquering anything/reaching > anywhere etc.)
Some conworlds unfortunately fit less well into other milieux than others. I would love to watch something like this taking place, but interaction with "outside" conworlds would severely screw with the development of my particular setting. OTOH, an *alternate* history would be funny. =^) YHL