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Seminar: Hearts & Minds

SEMINAR

What is this table-top role-playing thing? How does it work, what does it do, what kind of designs do which things? I've got some ideas, and so do you. This is where we talk it over.

Some of my posts here present a concept, game title, or a historical hobby event for discussion in the comments, so join in with a will. You'll also find interviews and conversations. (Soon I'll amend the Hearts & Minds  blue button so you can post these things on your own.)

I'm also running what I guess I call "labs," which are organized and prepared at the Patreon. I run them on Mondays using Discord, and anyone pledging there can participate when they feel like it. I post the recordings here the following Monday with ongoing discussion in the comments.

The one thing I regret is not making up twenty characters across seven game titles and launching into fervent play right away. This was so much fun.

Posted by: Ron Edwards
06 May 2018
9 comments

Oh golly, let’s see a bunch of guys over-share about how much their characters have been having sex!! ... for those few of you remaining in the room, you’ll see us talk well beyond the boilerplate. Sex has been freed-up in role-playing over the last decade and a half. This seems to have freed us as well into dialing-back and modulating how it plays into everything else, to find some new things this medium-and-activity can do.

Posted by: Ron Edwards
29 Apr 2018
3 comments

Here's a conversation with Ivan, following up on his comments (and video) in the Finding D&D series. I split the last bit off to join the SFTV RPG seminar too, so this was sort of an all-over-Adept-Play discussion. It's divided roughly into some "how we met D&D" talk, thoughts on fantasy in role-playing and fantasy vs. role-playing, essentialism's virtues and limitations, and a little bit of rather good contrasts in views about playing on purpose.

Posted by: Ron Edwards
24 Apr 2018
1 comment

Science fiction is a vast squishy thing spread throughout all sorts of media and culture/subculture. Got it. I wanted to examine its content in two pretty-specialized media: mainstream television series and table-top role-playing. You’ll see three dialogues: first with Ángel, then Ivan, and finally Moreno. I’m first to admit, the result is a mess: not much more than dialogue, spitballing, trying to stay on track, with a couple of difficult variables in play.

Posted by: Ron Edwards
23 Apr 2018
3 comments

The topic is group preparation, when you spend some time together creating and customizing the setting and situation. Whether it's a pitch, a series of rules steps,a suggestion-and-approval process, or anything like that - we hit it from a lot of angles and a lot of examples.

Joining me are Ray, Herman, Ángel, Santiago, and Moreno, for what appears to be my first real success at production for a group activity. At last, no tiny head.

Posted by: Ron Edwards
16 Apr 2018
14 comments

Part 5, final video out of five. Presenting a couple of definitions, asking a few pointed questions, copping to what I think.

Let the rumpus start.

Posted by: Ron Edwards
10 Apr 2018
6 comments

Here's the follow-up to the earlier post in which Jason D'Angelo talked about my little diagramming habit. I'd planned to get this content into the comments there, but the games are so interesting and the diagrams are - I think - illuminating enough to merit their own presentation.

I'll also emphasize the point I make toward the end, that each game's diagram differs from the others in terms of what the rules refer to. That's a big deal.

Posted by: Ron Edwards
10 Apr 2018
1 comment

"Everyone knows" what sandbox means. Except that it was a term 'ported into table-top role-playing from another medium and adopted as fashion rather than substance, so no, I don't. Talk is cheap, whiskey costs money, and let's see if this is a thing, and if so, how many things, and if so in a given case, whether it's something you really want to play in.

Posted by: Ron Edwards
08 Apr 2018
12 comments

Finding D&D, part 4! This one is scaring me. Remember how I warned that the one about fundamentalism and the OSR wouldn't be insulting? I fear this one can't say the same, and even if it doesn't go too far, I know it's going to gore a lot of oxen.

Posted by: Ron Edwards
05 Apr 2018
21 comments

It’s given: “Powered by the Apocalypse” is an effective brand, and “Apocalypse Engine” is common usage for a presumed mechanics base. I’m not challenging either of these. I’m investigating what they may mean, and whether meanings differ.

Posted by: Ron Edwards
02 Apr 2018
21 comments

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