elements of a social warfare mud
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ide



Joined: 21 Feb 2006
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 10, 2006 6:28 pm    Post subject: elements of a social warfare mud Reply with quote

There's been some discussion here about what I'll call elements of social systems, with threads on:

Reputation:
http://www.mudlab.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=171
http://www.mudlab.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=105

Alignment:
http://www.mudlab.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=66

Advanced socials:
http://www.mudlab.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=78

Karma points for social control:
http://www.mudlab.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=79

Social combat:
http://www.mudlab.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=17

I'm bringing all this together because I read an interesting article about reputation systems in the Escapist recently, at

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/issue/21/3


Are there any muds with a heavy code emphasis on social systems like those described in the threads above?


Do RPI muds including RP tinys fulfill the functions of these systems by default without code -- in fact are they better for not being coded?


For that matter does the social confict and interaction inherent in the PvP conflict of a typical PK mud fulfill these same functions by default?


Do social systems only work well in the context of other systems, like mud economy, combat, crafting, questing? Or could they form the base of a 'social warfare' mud?


OK, I'll take a crack at answering my own questions, perhaps a backward approach but bear with me.

I can't speak for MMO games too much but I'm not aware of any mud with an in-depth coded social system. RPI muds (including tinys in this category), indeed all muds, do fulfill the functions of social systems by default simply because a player will interact with other players. Of course it only counts for PvP, you need to code NPCs if you want them to fulfill the same functions, and so I think social systems have been designed only to supplement other systems like physical combat and questing.

On the other hand I think a virtual world where your character can ruin the reputation and influence of another character with a coded system would definitely make for a fun game -- with emphasis on the game, not the virtual world. Perhaps combine this with a resources game that depends heavily on your character's reputation.

I think RP would still be a viable part of the game, though I don't know if RP'ers would take to such a game because the system might provide certain constraints on their RP. It does seem like other systems like combat and crafting would still be necessary as other methods to modify reputation and influence.
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KaVir



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PostPosted: Fri Mar 17, 2006 9:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Do RPI muds including RP tinys fulfill the functions of these systems by default without code -- in fact are they better for not being coded?


Like most things, I think this is really a matter of opinion and personal preference, but I think you touch in an interesting point.

Some people like to emote combat, others prefer a hardcoded systems. There are muds which cater to both crowds. Yet when it comes to social interaction, almost every mud seems to treat this as purely an emote-controlled system. There are some muds which offer very basic social combat, but nothing comparable to the sort of hardcoded combat options most muds offer.

We recognise that there are some players who enjoy emoted socialising (often called "roleplayers") and some who don't (often called "hack-n-slashers"), but even the latter are almost invariably limited to the same emote-based options as the former. We wouldn't expect the typical hack-n-slasher to enjoy combat if it was handled purely through emotes, and equally we wouldn't expect them to pay much attention to emote-based social interaction. Yet instead of providing them with a hardcoded alternative like we do with combat, we instead simply allow them to ignore the system because we recognise that they're unlikely to enjoy it. That doesn't sound like a particularly sound design decision to me.

I was recently reading one of the World of Darkness (pen&paper roleplaying) discussion forums, and apparently they're planning to introduce a social combat system of some sort. This has caused a certain amount of controversy, particularly among the hardcore roleplayers, but it does raise some interesting questions. You don't expect the player of a combat character to demonstrate their sword-fighting skills during a combat system, so why should the player of a socialite have to demonstrate their social skills through roleplaying? Why should the shy roleplayer be forced to always play shy characters?

If you want to encourage a player to take a more active social role, then IMO a good way to start is to provide them with a viable way to play social-oriented characters. And a hardcoded system provides that option, allowing even the most socially-inept player the chance to play Casanova (even if only with NPCs).



Note: When I refer to 'emoted combat' I'm referring to emotes with no code support. I'm aware that some muds allow emotes to influence combat, but I consider these a form of hardcoded system.
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Massaria



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PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 3:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I was recently reading one of the World of Darkness (pen&paper roleplaying) discussion forums, and apparently they're planning to introduce a social combat system of some sort. This has caused a certain amount of controversy, particularly among the hardcore roleplayers, but it does raise some interesting questions. You don't expect the player of a combat character to demonstrate their sword-fighting skills during a combat system, so why should the player of a socialite have to demonstrate their social skills through roleplaying? Why should the shy roleplayer be forced to always play shy characters?


I believe the WoD designers has earned more than a few prizes for their inventive and re-newing game mechanics ('rules'), but going through with this should surely earn them contempt and redicule.

At least if they insist on describing it as a 'RPG' game. Perhaps 'SRPG' - as in 'strategical' - would be fun, I don't know, but it sure as hell hasn't anything to do with what I consider a RPG game. Especially since we're talking about a table-top game here.

I'll flip a coin for entertainment before I let some rulebook decide how my character reacts to a flirt or provocation or whatever.

Very interesting article in the Escapist, ide. Seems I've been missing out on a a good site there. Thanks Smile
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Nornagest



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PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 11:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Massaria wrote:

I believe the WoD designers has earned more than a few prizes for their inventive and re-newing game mechanics ('rules'), but going through with this should surely earn them contempt and redicule.

At least if they insist on describing it as a 'RPG' game.


Well, similar things have been done in RPGs before - D&D's reaction roll system comes to mind. Doesn't seem to fit well with White Wolf's apparent philosophy, though - strip down d20 and you have a not-especially-realistic squad-level tactical sim, but strip down a World of Darkness game and you have an Anne Rice novel.

I can see algorithmic social combat working in a MUD under certain circumstances, but I wouldn't introduce it in a game based around socializing - it seems to be basically social climbing for hack-and-slashers.

Quote:
Why should the shy roleplayer be forced to always play shy characters?


I don't think this is really a major issue; from what I've been able to deduce, socializing on the Internet doesn't seem to trigger many of the same blocks that socializing in real life would. A player may be uninterested in a MUD's social scene or consider it unrewarding, but that's more a matter of playing style than native personality.
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ide



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PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2006 9:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nornagest wrote:


Kavir wrote:
Why should the shy roleplayer be forced to always play shy characters?


I don't think this is really a major issue; from what I've been able to deduce, socializing on the Internet doesn't seem to trigger many of the same blocks that socializing in real life would.


Taking the liberty of rephrasing KaVir's question, and I think getting at what he was really saying if you look at the context of that quote, why should the less skilled RPers be forced to always play the less socially skilled characters?

Clearly that is a generalized question. Skilled RP does not always mean playing a socialite. However I'm curious if the effects of skilled RP can be duplicated and augmented effectively with code, is this something many players (RPers and PKers) would respond to?

Is it going backwards to play a mud as a game and not a 'virtual world' where many characters simply are aspects of the players personality glossed by a fantasy or sci-fi veneer?
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shasarak



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PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2006 4:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Massaria wrote:
I'll flip a coin for entertainment before I let some rulebook decide how my character reacts to a flirt or provocation or whatever.

I've often thought it would be interesting to have a "social combat" system in a MUD to allow a wider variety of approaches to a problem. If you have to get past a guard then the only way to do it in most MUDs is to kill him. In the real world there might be countless ways of achieving the same goal: sneak past him, sweet-talk him into letting you past, threaten him, bribe him, disguise yourself as a colleague, pretend to be a surprise inspection by his superiors, etc. etc.

One could easily imagine a system where the player could choose various methods of initimidation where "victory" would mean the guard succumbing to fear sufficiently to let the player past, or methods of persuasion/flirtation/seduction, and so on. One ould even imagine guilds/classes whose adepts were specially trained in arts such as seduction, suggestion, and con artistry. The problem with all of this, though, is I can't imagine a system like this ever working well against other players, as opposed to NPCs.

As Massaria says, most players will throw a tantrum if their characters are no longer always allowed to react to something in the way that they, the players, choose that they should. One can imagine an ad hoc system of player vs player manipulation ("let me through this door, and I'll give you netsex") but this is a system that depends entirely on the personality and abilities of the player, not the character, and is inherently OOC. It would take a very dedicated RP-er to be able to say "okay, I guess my character wouldn't be able to resist that sort of flirtation so I'll let you through" even though the player is well aware that his character is being manipulated and his instinct is to refuse.

Mind you, this is not actually all that different from allowing the game to contain a "charm person" spell. If one player successfully casts that on another, how do you handle it? Would players be happy if the game occasionally allowed other players to control them magically?
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Nornagest



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PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2006 7:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ide wrote:

Taking the liberty of rephrasing KaVir's question, and I think getting at what he was really saying if you look at the context of that quote, why should the less skilled RPers be forced to always play the less socially skilled characters?

Clearly that is a generalized question. Skilled RP does not always mean playing a socialite...


Well, that kind of argument works both ways. To take one example, if you have a reasonably sophisticated combat system, player skill is as much a limiting factor as anything else; by your reasoning, therefore, why should someone who can't hack the combat system be limited to playing noncombative or martially incompetent characters?

The obvious response is that managing combat is a learned skill, so getting better at the voluntary aspects of the game is effectively a reward for continuing to play it. This is arguably unfair within the context of the game, since it commingles traits belonging to a character with traits belonging to its player, but it's increasingly common anyway because many players value the extra control more than theoretical fairness. With this in mind, you probably want to introduce some degree of player choice into your combat system, with its limits set by your design and target audience.

Good roleplaying is also a learned skill, and the same arguments apply. The default seems to be much closer to the voluntary end of the scale, though; I think there are a number of reasons for this. MUDs are better at facilitating conversation and even body language (through emotes) than refereeing player-written swordfights; it's easier to write good dialogue than good action; social interaction doesn't have the same kind of immediate consequences, making voluntary systems harder to abuse; and the roleplaying genre in general has historically leaned toward algorithmic combat and player-directed socializing.

Note that I'm not saying algorithmic social combat is automatically a bad thing; I think it could be a good addition to, say, an achievement- or PK-based game in a socially Byzantine setting. I don't think it'd play well with a socializing-heavy game, though, and I strongly disagree with the idea that it makes roleplaying somehow fairer.

Quote:
I'm curious if the effects of skilled RP can be duplicated and augmented effectively with code, is this something many players (RPers and PKers) would respond to?



Insofar as skilled roleplaying is a means to an end, yes. However, it can also be seen as an end in itself; I doubt that can be duplicated easily, if at all.
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KaVir



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PostPosted: Fri Mar 24, 2006 12:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Massaria wrote:
I'll flip a coin for entertainment before I let some rulebook decide how my character reacts to a flirt or provocation or whatever.


Supposing we have Bubba, a player with strong social skills, who creates a purely physical character. Then we have Boffo, a rather shy player who is eager for the challenge of roleplaying a socialite.

If you don't take mechanics into account, then Bubba is going to be able to smoothly roleplay his way through every social encounter (despite the fact that his character has no social skills) while Boffo is going to seriously struggle to reflect the abilities that his character should possess.

Without mechanical support, the only fair way to approach this situation is to force Bubba to always allocate a large percentage of his character's creation points to social attributes and abilities.

Personally I've always preferred a combination of the two - the player roleplays the situation, and depending how well they do I assign a modifier to their roll. I apply this to all situations however (including combat), not just social ones. If you want to decide how well you respond to a provocation then you can use your roleplaying skills to improve your chances, but if your character is a complete coward then he's unlikely to spit in the dragon's eye, regardless of your wishes.

The mechanics shouldn't interfere with good roleplaying, but they can potentially be used to prevent bad roleplaying.
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Massaria



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PostPosted: Sat Mar 25, 2006 3:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Without mechanical support, the only fair way to approach this situation is to force Bubba to always allocate a large percentage of his character's creation points to social attributes and abilities.


I'm not sure it's the only fair way to deal with this problem, but yeah, it does seem a fair solution.
I think we can agree that Bubba is a bad roleplayer (he doesn't stay in character). If, for instance, players were required to include 3 positive traits and 1 bad trait in the process of character creation, and each occurence of roleplay (player consented and marked in code), would allow the participants to evaluate the other parties in the scene - as related to these traits.
I'd argue that Bubba would get a very poor rating very fast, and thus other players would think twice before entering RP with such a poorly rated player.
I know peer review is nothing new, but it works just fine as far as I'm concerned - There's no need to introduce all kinds of cumbersome mechanics to a probelm which has already found a solution.

Quote:
The mechanics shouldn't interfere with good roleplaying, but they can potentially be used to prevent bad roleplaying.


We haven't yet discussed exactly how these mechanics would influence the character's freedom of choice. But supposing that it does bar the character from taking certain courses of action, then this approach certainly has potential to demote roleplay to a matter of 'stat-tweaking' - the emphasis on how to create an dominating character rather than portraying one. This may or may not turn out fun - but it has little to do with RP.

I don't think weak roleplayers deserve the benefit of design changes specifically tailored to their shortcommings any more than people with a weak analytical mind, poor attention span or a gullible personality.

I think an automated system like Shasarak describes would be just fine, but I don't want some game routine determining how my character reacts - that's my job.

Mass,
Roleplay, not Rollplay.
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KaVir



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PostPosted: Sat Mar 25, 2006 11:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I think we can agree that Bubba is a bad roleplayer (he doesn't stay in character).


In my opinion that's a symptom of bad game design - the fact that it not only supports, but actively rewards bad roleplaying.

Quote:
If, for instance, players were required to include 3 positive traits and 1 bad trait in the process of character creation, and each occurence of roleplay (player consented and marked in code), would allow the participants to evaluate the other parties in the scene - as related to these traits.


Nice in theory, but useless in practice. Bubba the bad roleplayer helps you out, or otherwise provides support for your roleplaying activities? Good rating. Boffo the good roleplayer participates in plotlines which hinder you? Bad rating.

Quote:
I'd argue that Bubba would get a very poor rating very fast, and thus other players would think twice before entering RP with such a poorly rated player.


Bubba's rating would depend almost entirely on his popularity - and being a highly social individual, that popularity could be very high.

Quote:
I know peer review is nothing new, but it works just fine as far as I'm concerned - There's no need to introduce all kinds of cumbersome mechanics to a probelm which has already found a solution.


Check out the various mud listing sites to see how effective such a "solution" is - they're nothing more than popularity contests, and have practically nothing to do with the quality of the muds.

Quote:
We haven't yet discussed exactly how these mechanics would influence the character's freedom of choice. But supposing that it does bar the character from taking certain courses of action, then this approach certainly has potential to demote roleplay to a matter of 'stat-tweaking' - the emphasis on how to create an dominating character rather than portraying one. This may or may not turn out fun - but it has little to do with RP.


I disagree - as long as you implement limitations that are guaranteed to be valid for the character in question, they cannot hinder good roleplaying, only bad roleplaying.

Quote:
I don't think weak roleplayers deserve the benefit of design changes specifically tailored to their shortcommings any more than people with a weak analytical mind, poor attention span or a gullible personality.


However that results in games where players can only play characters who have the same mental and social mindsets as themselves. Would you really force a player to demonstrate knowledge of medical procedures in order to play a healer? Would you honestly require players to use their own legal knowledge for their characters to fight court cases within the mud? Would a player really have to demonstrate real-life leather-working skills in order to make a pair of leather gloves?

Quote:
I think an automated system like Shasarak describes would be just fine, but I don't want some game routine determining how my character reacts - that's my job.


It's only your job within reason. Your character cannot do everything you can do, nor does it know everything you know, and it's the job of the GM to stop you when you try to go beyond those limitations. In the case of muds, the mud itself is the GM (at least in most respects).

Quote:
Roleplay, not Rollplay.


Roleplaying game. Without dice (or some other equivilent) there is no game, only a talker. And like all games, there are rules - and rules need to be enforced.

If your savage brain-eating barbarian turns into a casanova overnight without any reason then that's not "your job", but bad roleplaying, and it's up to the GM (either human or mud) to stop it.
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Spazmatic



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PostPosted: Sun Mar 26, 2006 3:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Nice in theory, but useless in practice. Bubba the bad roleplayer helps you out, or otherwise provides support for your roleplaying activities? Good rating. Boffo the good roleplayer participates in plotlines which hinder you? Bad rating.


Like many things, a peer review system succeeds massively when it succeeds at all, and fails massively when it fails. There are many, for example, MUSHes, that employ such a system, and due to the playerbase they attract, they do quite well. Similarly, if you stuck such a system on a random mud, I suspect it would perform quite poorly.

And really, it's a value judgement for how far you want to take it. Muds lie somewhere between the mostly human world (maybe tabletop, as an example) and the mostly computerized world (maybe CRPGs, as an example). Which side your system favors is up to you.

So, in response to the OP, I guess I'm saying: "Up to you." For, er, most of the questions listed.
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Massaria



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PostPosted: Sun Mar 26, 2006 5:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

First off, let's be clear that we're talking muds here, not table-top - at least that's where I'm comming from with this post.

Quote:
Nice in theory, but useless in practice. Bubba the bad roleplayer helps you out, or otherwise provides support for your roleplaying activities? Good rating. Boffo the good roleplayer participates in plotlines which hinder you? Bad rating.


All systems have their weak points. This is one, certainly, which is why the focus should always be on whether or not a given player portrayed the personality traits registered with his 'whois' report.
Perhaps, after these ratings are given upon a completed scene, the players would rate eachother yet another time - this time over whether or not the rating they gave out was a fair one. People who give out 'unfair' ratings would be shunned like those who RP poorly.
Of course, the system is still subject to nepotism/favouritism, but that doesn't mean it couldn't fulfill its function of securing better roleplay in general terms.


Quote:
I disagree - as long as you implement limitations that are guaranteed to be valid for the character in question, they cannot hinder good roleplaying, only bad roleplaying.


But you can't -ever- quarantee that the limitations are valid. That's exactly the beauty of roleplay. If done well, characters evolve; they shrug off old fears and acquire new ones, develop a taste for one food or nervous behavious after a mugging... you get the picture. Placing limitations on how I'm allowed to react will hinder this evolution. A computerized system can never (well, can't yet) simulate or anticipate how a given character should react to a given situation.
As a GM in a table-top, you can easily discern a player who goes out of bounds, but having some automated mechanism decide that for you is just utopia with our current technology.

Quote:
However that results in games where players can only play characters who have the same mental and social mindsets as themselves. Would you really force a player to demonstrate knowledge of medical procedures in order to play a healer? Would you honestly require players to use their own legal knowledge for their characters to fight court cases within the mud? Would a player really have to demonstrate real-life leather-working skills in order to make a pair of leather gloves?


Of course not. Don't be silly.
It's an old problem, and one that I've discussed often in various gaming groups. How do you account for a player who plays a character with god-like intelligence? How can the shy, quiet player benefit from his astounding charisma?
There's solutions to this problem, but I've yet to come across a satisfactory one - and I've never, until now, heard the proposal that it be solved by forcing other *players* to react in a certain way. It's more easy with NPCs (making tables and indexing various stats to derive a general attitude).
You're proposing that a system like this will help poor roleplayers 'get what they deserve' - that they can force other players to react in a certain manner simply because they have the stats to make it happen.
I don't see how this could help make good RP, I only see that it takes away any RP at all. It may make it more fair between good and poor RP'ers, but is that really what we want - to punish the good PR'ers simply for being good RP'ers?

Quote:
In the case of muds, the mud itself is the GM (at least in most respects).

True, but one of the aspects which isn't included here, is RP. And rightly so. As stated earlier, I think such a system could only produce bland and stereotypical characters.

Quote:
Roleplaying game. Without dice (or some other equivilent) there is no game, only a talker. And like all games, there are rules - and rules need to be enforced.


Well, 'game' is not easily defined, but I'm fairly certain that you'd have to look long and hard to find one that claims dice, or a random factor, must be part of the system before it could be called a game.
Take Osiris' 'Yes/no/huh' game on TMC. I'd certainly call that a game, yet it has no random factors at all.
I'm not sure what point you're making about the rules, but just for kicks I might say that even though rules need to be enforeced, they aren't necessarily good rules, and even if they are, they need to be re-evaluated from time to time.

Quote:
If your savage brain-eating barbarian turns into a casanova overnight without any reason then that's not "your job", but bad roleplaying, and it's up to the GM (either human or mud) to stop it.


Naturally. But how would you make the mud know that the change is actually alright (as it conceivably could be)? I don't see a reasonable way of doing that - but if the mud could take on the role of a human GM, I'd be all for it, no doubt.
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KaVir



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PostPosted: Sun Mar 26, 2006 8:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is getting a bit off-topic, so I'll focus on the main (original) points, which seem to have been missed.

Quote:
First off, let's be clear that we're talking muds here, not table-top


Well you originally responded by attacking the WoD tabletop system's approach to social combat, so I was really arguing from the perspective of both.

In a tabletop roleplaying game I expect my players roleplay out their encounters, but I'll also require them to roll the dice to see how well they did. The quality of their roleplaying will certainly provide a modifier to the roll, but they cannot rely purely on roleplaying. The smooth-talking player may well get a bonus to his dice rolls for his persuasive arguments, but if his character has no social skills he's still going to have some serious difficulties. The same is true of physical and mental characters.

Without some sort of random factor, social skills and attributes are useless. It also becomes practically impossible to enforce many other modifiers that could be quickly and easily handled through a dice roll.

This isn't really about forcing you into doing things, but rather a case of requiring the character to have the appropriate skills rather than the player. You (the player) can get your character to attempt to lift a car above her head, but if the character is a weakling she's highly unlikely to succeed. Just as the "village idiot" character is unlikely to successfully build a fusion reactor in his basement. Just as the smelly hermit is unlikely to successfully inspire a nation into worshipping him as a god.

We know these things are unlikely. Common sense tells us that they are unlikely. But how are you going to decide them without dice? Are you just going to "choose" the results?



The other point I was making was specifically in regard muds - in particular, non-roleplaying muds. If the players aren't interested in roleplaying anyway, then the whole social side of the mud is an untapped resource that could be turned into another part of the game. Just as some people prefer purely roleplayed combat, so some people also prefer purely roleplayed social encounters - but I doubt anyone would argue that all muds should handle combat without coded support. So why, then, the idea that all muds should handle social encounters without code?
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cron0s



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PostPosted: Sun Mar 26, 2006 10:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

One area I think something like this could work very well is in systems of player run organisations and political institutions with elected leadership positions. As well as the usual one member one vote, each candidate could receive a number of bonus votes based on their social/leadership/charisma skills etc. With a secret ballot the precise numbers of bonus votes to each character could be kept hidden from the players, adding a nice element of extra tension to the political process.

I think this would be a nice addition to these kinds of systems, and would certainly make it easier for players to create a more political/leadership focused character, regardless of their own social skills or popularity.
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Massaria



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PostPosted: Sun Mar 26, 2006 10:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Well you originally responded by attacking the WoD tabletop system's approach to social combat, so I was really arguing from the perspective of both.


Yeah. I noticed, hence the clarification.

Quote:
The quality of their roleplaying will certainly provide a modifier to the roll, but they cannot rely purely on roleplaying. The smooth-talking player may well get a bonus to his dice rolls for his persuasive arguments, but if his character has no social skills he's still going to have some serious difficulties. The same is true of physical and mental characters.


Well, I'll admit that there might be a dichotomy in the way I handle this in table-top RPGs. I've never used dice to determine the reactions of characters under my control (NPCs). Never.
But I do use them to check whether some character can lift the car or not, and it's a valid question to ask 'why one and not the other?'.

I guess the answer lies with science. It's easy to determine how much a character can lift, whether he's fictional or not - that we introduce a random factor to arrive at the exact amount is within reason - not even world-class weightlifters can lift the same from day to day.
We also quantify a character's personal magnetism by a number, but to introduce a random factor here to arrive at a result of 'failure' or 'success' isn't reasonable in my eyes. It's enough, for me as a GM, to know that this character is lovable or repugnant in order to determine the reactions of people.
By simply turning over the outcome to some standard table you're creating stereotypical bahaviour in ALL you NPCs - You aren't allowing for some NPCs to be attracted to broken noses and scaring and others to be repelled by smooth-talking warren beaty(?) types.
Buttom line is you can't convincingly reduce human interaction to a set of equations or algorithms. With feats of strength, speed, combat and all those, it's another matter.

Quote:
We know these things are unlikely. Common sense tells us that they are unlikely. But how are you going to decide them without dice? Are you just going to "choose" the results?


In a table-top RPG during a social situation?
You bet I'll choose.

Quote:
Just as some people prefer purely roleplayed combat, so some people also prefer purely roleplayed social encounters - but I doubt anyone would argue that all muds should handle combat without coded support. So why, then, the idea that all muds should handle social encounters without code?


I dunno. Who had that idea?
I don't give a hoot if people start implementing mechanics to reflect social dominance and standing - they just can't call it roleplay, not in my book.
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