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Adding a fantasy gaming section

Discussion in 'Ask the Staff' started by Black Dragon, Jan 28, 2011.

  1. Black Dragon

    Black Dragon Staff Administrator

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    We are considering the possibility of adding a forum for fantasy gaming. It would cover fantasy video games as well as pen & paper RPGs. This is something that we're looking at adding further down the road, once we have built a substantial userbase.

    Any thoughts on this? Is this something that you would find worthwhile?
     
  2. chris7

    chris7 Dreamer

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    Great idea, A nice way to get the community together, Bonding and ultimately having fun.

    Thumbs up from me.
     
  3. Black Dragon

    Black Dragon Staff Administrator

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    Thanks for your feedback on this, Chris. Once our userbase increases slightly, this will be our next addition.
     
  4. kjjcarpenter

    kjjcarpenter Minstrel

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    At first I thought it would seem like a lousy addition to a forum generally consisting around storytelling—sorry, I'm biased, not a big gamer—but it caught my attention when you mentioned paper and pen role-playing games, such as D&D. Me and my friends play it on an irregular basis, and I'm sure they would be interested in joining if such an addition was opened.
    Definitely a consideration. I suppose video games are a form of storytelling, albeit fairly unrealistic for indie scribes.
     
  5. Black Dragon

    Black Dragon Staff Administrator

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    Hi Kev,

    Thanks for your feedback on this. Personally, I've had some reservations about adding a gaming section. I wouldn't want to dilute the purpose of the site, which is fantasy storytelling.

    However, as you indicated, paper and pen role playing is a different animal. It really is about storytelling. The Dungeon Master has to be an effective storyteller to make the game really work. And the players are also in a sense storytellers, bringing life to their characters.

    What do you think would be preferable? A forum on fantasy gaming in general, or perhaps focused specifically on pen and paper role playing? We're looking for opinions on this.
     
  6. kjjcarpenter

    kjjcarpenter Minstrel

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    As you said, it would be a shame to deviate from the main focus of this website. If a gaming section was added, I would imagine it would bring with it an influx of members; however, I think such members would be more accustomed to fan-fiction rather than the creation of their own characters, worlds and themes. Still a form of story telling, yes, though I don't believe this is what Mythic Scribes is aiming toward. I am personally against most fan-fiction as it provides an excuse not to think and create.

    A paper and pen role playing section would be the way to go. I see it as a happy medium between gaming and writing, and thus acceptable in my books. Perhaps a sub-forum or topic in the general chat area would be a better addition for video games?

    Another idea could be a forum dedicated to inspirations, which, for a lot of people I'm sure, would cover video games.
     
  7. Greybeard

    Greybeard Minstrel

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    I do think that a gaming forum deserves consideration. But I would keep it focused on pen and paper games.
     
  8. Legerdemain

    Legerdemain Troubadour

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    Here are two considerations I would have for a gaming forum:

    1. It would be an opportunity for people who wish to discuss storylines and writing based in games to vent their frustrations and share their opinions in an area that will be generally avoided by non-gamers, for example if Blizzard decided to make Thrall, former leader of the Horde, a crossdresser, the gamers among the site could yell and rant without bothering the rest of us. However, this would be for discussion of writing withing the games, not the games themselves, and the moderators would have to be protective of that (this should not be a place to discuss how to play the game, but the general writing and role-playing that is potentially behind it).

    2. On the paper side of things, writing a good campaign for paper gaming is almost as hard as writing a novel. Many storytellers for these games get all the less important things right, like loot tables and leveled challenges, and many of the story aspects wrong, like creating NPC's that aren't straight out of the online guides they've glanced through while trying to figure out who to make this string of fights a story. Don't get me wrong, there are good storytellers out there, but many had to learn from somewhere else, and a forum discussion on RPG storytelling would not be a bad place to discuss creativity.

    Those are my two cents. Now I have to find a job in this economy, cause I'm now broke, having no cents left.
     
  9. kjjcarpenter

    kjjcarpenter Minstrel

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    I'm sure there are more cents where they come from, Leg. Had you spent 2 cents in Australia, you would still have five cents as it would round up.

    Your idea for discussing game storylines is justifiable, I am still very critical when it comes to this though. Although I used to play Role Playing Games such as Final Fantasy and World of Warcraft many years ago, their storylines, when weighed up against even some of the less-known novels, hold no grounds.

    I remember reading an article about the World of Warcraft novels, of which I have read two and was cringing the entire time at the obvious simplicity of it to appeal to their gamers. The man in change of all canonical aspects of the game world said the only true canon is the game itself; the novels, and even the earlier games under the "Warcraft" title, are essentially not in canon and clash with the game story on a regular basis. I agree there are some decent story arcs within the game from what I have read and seen, but in the end it's a video game, and they have to appeal to the audience who want to point, click and kill; making the game enjoyable to play to the majority of their fans who skip over even the smallest of dialogue. A friend of mine. who was heavily addicted to the game. didn't know anything of the storyline and only played so he could fight people.

    Final Fantasy, while having many literacy references and in-depth storylines, suffers from the same illness as World of Warcraft: they're both video games, and in the end, the gameplay comes first. Story is sacrificed for gameplay on many occasions, and in the end, you are given a heavily fragmented story that could have very well succeeded had it been told in the form of a book, especially for Final Fantasy X.

    I still think video games stray too far from what we are offering here and would fit better into the general chat area, with no specific section. Although games may offer inspiration, they offer no skills on how to improve your writing, which is why an inspiration section may be more appropriate.
     
  10. Legerdemain

    Legerdemain Troubadour

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    I hear you there, the Warcraft novels do have quite the bite to them Kev...
     
  11. In regard to computer games, I sometimes play online on my 360, normally after I've had a few pints of liquid refreshment. The sheer amount of homophobic, sexist, racist inbred bilge-rats I've encountered has convinced me its a community best left to fester in its own stupidity. I'm not saying it's a bad idea - even one of my favourite authors, Terry Pratchett, was playing Oblivion before his illness struck. I just think, at best, it's worth a thread in the chit-chat section. Mythic Scribes seems to have attracted a quality assortment of people, and it would be a shame to see it diluted by dullards who think kill/death ratios are the be-all and end-all of existence.

    In terms of pen-and-paper gaming, that does tend to attract a more thoughtful crowd, but as yet I've never seen a forum which benefited from having a specific section devoted to it. Such things play a part in developing the imagination - I have fond memories of D&D and Traveller - but I consider them a sideshow to the main attraction. Still, what do I know? Just my two-penneth worth.:)
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2011
  12. Behelit

    Behelit Troubadour

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    Perhaps I see it in a more optimistic light. Not to promote the notion of righteousness, adding a sub-board of gaming could be a way of facilitating the writer/storyteller in the gamer. Even seek out more respect for the storytelling aspect of a game. This isn't and won't be a GAMING board. We are determined for this Forum to remain focused upon story and writing such.

    If film and television is a part of the forums, I don't see why not games.

    Hint: The default avatars are from Baldur's Gate, a fantastic PC game. ;)
     
  13. Donny Bruso

    Donny Bruso Sage

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    I tend to agree with Dusk. This is a forum for writers. If someone came on here and asked for help writing a campaign, I'm sure we would assist them. However, once gaming gets involved in any aspect, you tend to get the homophobic, racist, sexist, inbred bilge rats he spoke about. I used to play WoW and I couldn't use the general channels because of these people offending my sense of common courtesy. I'm devoutly thankful that we don't have anyone like that currently on this forum. This is one of the few I've seen where two members can actually have a discussion (though in Ravana's case it's more like a book, lol) without degenerating to name calling and accusations of homosexuality. That's something I love about this place, and I'd hate to see that change just for the sake of attracting a few more people who aren't here for the main purpose of the forum.
     
  14. Black Dragon

    Black Dragon Staff Administrator

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    A lot of interesting points are being made in this thread.

    The level of bigotry found in certain online gaming communities is astounding. Ever play Call of Duty online? It's not uncommon to be tea-bagged by a foul mouthed twelve year old as he calls you a racial slur.

    That being said, if we were to start some sort of gaming sub-forum, I would hope that the worst scum of the gaming community wouldn't bother with our site. After all, we're a gang of overly-verbose intellectuals. Hanging out with us would bore them to tears. There are lots of other forums specifically on gaming, full of other racist prepubescents to insult.

    Or is this wishful thinking?
     
  15. Black Dragon

    Black Dragon Staff Administrator

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    I'm glad that you noticed.

    Baldur's Gate is one of the finest examples of fantasy storytelling that I've ever encountered. It can hold its own against the best novels. It's spiritual successor, Dragon Age, is just as grand.
     
  16. Although I do agree that it would be hard on the moderators, I like the idea of a gaming forum so long as it focuses on the story telling and character development.

    I have actually found some nice inspiration for what I'm working on based on some of the Xbox games I play (ie Jade Empire, Dragon Age, and Fable). And as Kev mentioned we already have a thread topic started for Inspiration in general Chit-Chat. If we've covered TV shows - we can cover video games in there too and thus keeping the (as Dusk and Donny mentioned) homophobic, sexist, racist inbred bilge-rats at bay.
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2011
  17. Especially since the ranking system allows anyone over 5 posts access to the private section for the forum. I know I am relatively shy when it comes to my writing because I very rarely let anyone outside of close friends ever read it. I've looked around at a few other sites and I liked this one 1) because it was rather "young" and 2) because of the quality of posts.
     
  18. Black Dragon

    Black Dragon Staff Administrator

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    We're glad to have you here, Meg. With your stories and posts you've made important contributions to our community.

    This site is becoming a really special place. We've managed to attract some outstanding individuals, which is evident in the high overall quality of the posts. I'm really looking forward to watching this community grow into something magnificent.
     
  19. Aw...you made a grown woman blush! :) But seriously, this is a great site and one that I'm glad to be apart of. Thus far I've gotten good reviews and helpful criticisms. It truly has made me a better writer (or at least thinker) in the short time I've been in the community.

    But now I've gone off topic. I will improve there as well. ;)
     
  20. Legerdemain

    Legerdemain Troubadour

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    Interestingly enough, this is a topic I would love to talk about, but it's ABOUT the online game playing community, not necessarily regarding the mission of the website. My gf is Chinese, and don't get me started on how many people say "Herro" or make other asian racial jokes in an effort to be cute, and this is from the nicest "We don't tolerate cursing" guild I can find.

    But that said, this is a website for writing discussion, and after review of other peoples thoughts I think I do concur with Behelit that we shouldn't just ignore gaming, but let's limit it to its own place, whether that be a "game" area or within the realm of Chit and Chat.
     
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