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Narrative Control


Sep 10, 2009

We’re talking about trust at the game table.  How much do you need trust your fellow players? Does the game you’re playing change how much trust you need? What games address trust around the table?

Hosts: Sean Nittner and Justin Evans

Length: 23:04

Show Notes

[00:28] Introduction to the show.  Continuing a conversation from Josh Rensch’s blog gmwithadd.com
[00:45] Woops. This was supposed to be episode 35.
[01:24] Sorry Josh, this impersonation was made before we met. 
[01:37] Amorphous Blobcast Promo
[02:26] Josh Rensch is a cool dude.  He sent me stuff.
[03:00] He’s continuing the conversation on his blog… and hey, so are we in Season 2.
[03:56] Josh’s conversation with Fear the Boot.
[04:18] An excerpt from his post.  Done in my best “badass” voice.
[05:18] A little present for BG_Meg
[06:12] My first impression of Trust – Cheating in the game.  It doesn’t bother me.
[06:54] It is more nuanced that just cheating on dice rolls though.
[07:20] John Wick talks about why we shouldn’t need rules to handle cheaters in games on his LJ.
[08:06] A situation where you can’t control who you are gaming with: A convention game.
[08:36] Suspend expectations of the players until you’ve played with them for a while.  Escalate your presence in the game as you see your players commitment to the game.
[09:32] Cheating is just one issue of trust.  What about players trusting each other to all have the groups best interest in mind.
[10:37] The type of story you’re going to tell and how you have fun playing may be very different between players.
[11:11] Justin starts faulting himself.  I’d edit it out but it’s so rare that he admits fault, I had to make it public.  Allowing one player to take fun away from the other players.
[12:35] What did Justin do?  Players admitting that they aren’t having fun.  Justin’s reaction.  Taking time out.
[14:22] I’ve seen games where conflicts roll up from the characters right to the players and people leave with hurt feelings.
[14:51] Sean’s experience feeling frustrated and tired at the end of a game.  My reaction… this is not a therapy session.
[17:05] How do specific games handle this.  Many games talk about “in game” trust.
[17:20] Paranoia puts it up front that your characters are disposable, don’t take it personally.
[17:34] Any time you need to collaborate more at the table, you need to trust each other more.
[17:45] Montsegur 1244 is a tragedy, which is an extra effort to play and requires more trust to tell this game.
[18:32] Accidental plug or intentional pimp?
[18:47] When I trust another player, I’m willing to be hopeful even in a tragedy.  I know we’re watching out for each other.
[19:49] What sort of play experience we all want is something to establish early on, preferably before the game starts.
[20:07] Polaris also requires a lot of trust in the players around you.  The ritual protects you to some degree, but also allows the “mistaken” to intentionally deplete your character by offering undesirable twists.

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