Monday, April 10, 2017

Character Identity and Player Agency

So this post isn't about Dungeon World specifically, but touches on how a personal event interrelates. I'm on a discord server I won't name, and someone with a vaguely annoying attitude gets on there talking about memes being cancer or whatever. I'm not triggered by this but I'm within my rights to be as a cancer patient. He makes a piss joke, which I counter with a joke about using some bottle other than Mt. Dew

"Nigga I think you died."

I made light of that situation by making the joke that I was dying faster than some, but hopefully also slower than some. He points me to a YouTuber that makes light of crippling depression, who apparently helped him with his. I shared the moment by identifying my salvation as Jenna Marbles, and my favorite YouTuber as jacksepticeye.

We talked about a number of reasons maybe I should be depressed but wasn't. He concludes his OT was ruining the discord thread, but it was a general channel, so I don't think they minded.

So anon friend requests me and moves to chat.
Almost immediately tries to tell me Morrowind is the Best, Skyrim is The Worst. I don't think either are true. I don't make such a great big deal about why, but he then proceeds to present me all the reasons why supposedly Morrowind is the best, but they're actually all reasons I don't like it (worse, he actually admits to not playing very much Morrowind right before his computer died).

Then he continues to argue with me on the point we agreed on but also pile on a suggestion that an arbitrary restriction be placed on what powers a character can or cannot have, and whether or not specific powers should be required to beat the game.

He said something about how "making them gods isn't good either" --except nobody ever said it was. So he proceeds to posit as his sole piece of evidence, the notion that Skyrim characters are gods (because they can do everything or some shit). Nevermind the exploits available in every ES game. I suggested he wasn't playing on a high enough difficulty (expert apparently) and when I suggested he raise it, he apparently decided that the game became unplayable but refused to notice how that made the player "not a god".

I don't know if he ever spotted the flaws in his argument, but he thankfully moved on to what I should include in my UESRPG game. If I run one I had already incorporated some of the ideas. I told him I wasn't fond of Weres or Vampires though. I told him the major selling point that Skyrim had for me was being able to tell The Companions, and The Dawnguard to fuck right off, and never have to worry about that shit again. I felt like those diseases fuck with player agency too much (even still, I prefer both Oblivion and Daggerfall).

I told him that Vampires and Werewolves before Skyrim were a way to fuck with my morphology (and by extension my Player Agency). I tried to explain how important morphology is to my character identity, and how I create characters because that's the character I want to play. How fucking with my morphology fucks with the character's identity to the very core.

His response: Who gives a fuck about your Morphology?

I do. So I blocked him. It wasn't just the fact that he had no respect for my ideal character not being warped for stupidly arbitrary reasons. It was the casual disregard that he had for decency that had been ingrained in him by meme/chan culture, and that every step of the way he kept portraying an entirely apathetic attitude. 

Was I wrong?

Side Note: This isn't about favorite ES games, which are something I have a "to each their own" attitude about. My comments are moderated to avoid unrelated comments. 

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Into the Heart of the Dragon

So I made a map for a Dungeo World campaign in which the party is swallowed by a dragon big enough to eat a village whole. The idea is that they escape the dragon by killing it from the inside, and it crash lands, This map is where the dragon crash lands.

Since the game also takes place in part, inside a dragon, I'll also leave you with the starter for the group inside the dragon:
World Eater was once a normal dragon. For many centuries now, the dragon has been so big it could eat a village. The additional size means the dragon does not have the same physiology as other dragons. Old tales tell of ancient heroes with legendary weapons could once pierce its scales, but nobody has succeeded in doing that as long as anyone can remember. Assuredly, larger holds survive by sheer volume of siege weaponry they can bring to bear. You are from no such land. Some of you may have been here a while, others only a month. This is your story.

First Impressions
Ø  World Eater was once an ordinary black dragon, but now has a variety of gemstones and minerals that have become embedded into the dragon due to its hibernation and feeding cycles.
Ø  The town of Gullet as far as anyone inside can reckon, is a little way past where the Dragon’s esophagus meets its trachea, hence the name. Occasionally the dragon eats, and the whole town shakes like an earthquake. Dirt and rubble from a new town becomes a part of Gullet.
Ø  Gullet is situated deep in a “valley”; deeply enough that when the dragon breathes fire, the citizens are not harmed. They do however feel an intense pressure wave.
Ø  Gastric Fog occasionally comes from “south” of Gullet, leaving those who are stuck outside with mild acid burns for the next several days.
Ø  There is something the villagers are not telling you.
Ø  A constant faint creaking sound accompanies a slight rising and falling, as if the entire area is in a constant tide.

(in addition to the bonds you make with the other players, answer +Wis of the following)
Ø  Are you on good terms with the citizens of Gullet?
Ø  How did you survive the fall from the Dragon’s maw to the town of Gullet?
Ø  How long have you been in Gullet?
Ø  What rumors have you heard about escaping the dragon?
Ø  Whence did you hail before your home was swallowed?
Ø  Who do you know in Gullet?
Ø  Who would try to stop you from escaping the dragon if you could get out of Gullet?