Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Game Mechanics Have Little Worth


Want to make clear I'm saying this from perspective of me and my blog / posts.  Not in broader context of everyone else.  Specifically did not intend and apologize if it's taken as an "insult" or "bitch" to/over/about anyone else or their ideas/posting/games/etc. 

I wavered publishing this post, as it is very introspective.  Probably should have stuck with original title "A Confession".]

DCC RPG has got me thinking about game mechanics and house rules again.  Which, in the grand scheme, is very pointless*.

I've claimed that I can run a RPG with nothing more than a source of randomness (a die) and method of persistance (pen and paper)**.  It's a bit of a fib as "nothing" includes 30 or so years of playing all sorts of games, studying history/psychology/game theory/story structure/etc/etc.  Still, it's not a boast.  Anyone could do it.  It mostly requires accepting that rules are a largely ignorable detail.

Content is what matters.  In RPG terms content is a bunch of stuff.; story, pacing, challenge, surprise, DM skill.  In short and bit non-answerish; The ability to make playing a game fun.

RPG mechanics.  Some will have advantages for playing agnsty, interpersonal relationships of vampires.  Others for hacking one's way through a mythic dungeon.  Others for simulating life in medieval England.

But, poor content is probably gonna make a poor game no matter the mechanics.

I should be posting about content like many of great authors in blog roll to the right.  

But, I can't stop houseruling. It's what I am. Professionally (software dev) and personal (game hobbies, my philosophy/religion), are all about analyzing a tangle of requirements / constraints and working out optimal method(s) of achieving the desired end result(s).  And, writing out ideas in blog posts is excellent rubber ducking.  I also have gamer ADD.

* It's not pointless in that I derive much enjoyment endlessly twiddling things in endless and unachievable quest for the "perfect" mechanic.  It is pointless in that it's endless and unachievable and already done to death.

** That sounds like a cool convention event.  RPG Improv!

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