Friday, June 09, 2006

Monthly Review May 2006

May has seen significant developments in RPG theory. Many of these developments occurred in refinements to push and pull, while others focused on better understanding the basics of how people learn and play RPGs.

Push and Pull Redux

The revival of push and pull discussion this month was marked by a conversation between Chris Chinn and Moyra Turkington, culminating in her codified definitions of push and pull. This cause various reactions, including Jonathon Walton's call to avoid the terms becoming simple jargon. As a means of clarification, Bradley "Brand" Robins describes moments of crisis, where something important is decided, as being an important distinction between push and pull. This helped produce a new discussion, including both Vincent Baker and Bradley "Brand" Robins on the relationship between the resolution of drama mechanics and push and pull.

How Do People Play?

The question of how a game book or a basic RPG idea becomes RPG play is a complex one, and it is a process which several people have confronted this month. Early in May, Jonathon Walton discussed applying the concept of communities of practice to RPGs, especially in understanding how players come to agreements on how to act during the game. Joshua BishopRoby presented a list of player skills used when playing RPGs. Later on, Jessica Hammer started a discussion on teaching and playing RPGs in a classroom setting. Lastly, Thomas Robertson discussed the differences between rules and guidelines and their affect on how people play the game.

No comments: