Friday, September 4, 2009

One last whack at Creative Agenda

I picked up the Baron Munchausen RPG today, a strange, funky version of it that's more or less an in-character document - the titular character is the 'author' relating the rules and the text, with the meta-text element of him arguing with his 'off-camera' editor (as in, he relates his side of their ongoing disagreement in sort of real-time). Neat stuff ^_^

Anyway, it's been described by Ron Edwards, and by the guy who sold it to me, as "almost an RPG" - it's a lot (a LOT) like an idea I had about Vikings making boastful tales and then calling each other out on lies and getting points for it. That's also pretty much what happens in Baron too.

Anyway - so my realization is that any given game's support for CA is really quite simple, especially if it's fairly coherent. "Rules" in this context, by the way, means everything from mechanics to setting to, y'know, the basic reason why the game says you should play it.

Step On Up - the rules strongly support chances to show off how awesome and skillful you are, up to and including victory conditions. 4th ed. D&D definitely includes "minor-scale" win/loss situations where you get to show off what a tactical genius you are.

Right to Dream - the rules focus on supporting a certain kind of setting, premise, genre, etc. This could theoretically also include a game about a particular sort of character that you want to explore - the White Wolf games tend to focus on exploring a "lifestyle" of one sort or another.

Story Now - the rules focus on exploring a theme, philosophical premise/dilemma, something like that. This has generally been expressed so far as either an emotional (My Life With Master) or philosophical (Polaris) struggle - the struggle for freedom from the Doktor in the first one, and the struggle between integrity and self-preservation in the latter.

Anyway. Point is: CA is really pretty transparent to me now; good stuff.


  1. Good to hear, and good to see you sharing your findings again, you've been silent for far too long.

  2. Thanks, Francis! You're too kind. Life has been jam-packed for me - I've moved back to Virginia, after giving myself a scant two weeks to prepare.

    How was Gen Con? I ended up having a more extended visit with my family and friends instead of going. I was sad not to be there and also trying to let my internal pendulum swing away from RPing for a bit, like it does sometimes. Like it does with a lot of things. It's swung back, now ^_^

  3. Gotta agree...good to see you posting again.