On 2009-04-09, ThoughtBubble wrote:
So, I had all this stuff about wanting to talk about what the arrows do, and realized that that was the conversation to this point. Whoops.
So, to ballpark: It's possible to get away from the game world if the mechanics don't require input from the game world. It seems like it's also possible if the world is unable to affect the mechanics. Except since it's imaginary and concrete elements, it's more like, it's possible to get stuck in the tangable bits and get distant from the imaginary stuff.
It's kind of like what happended to my group when we went from 2nd to 3rd edition D&D. Suddenly all the description and conversation went out of combat and we started moving pieces on a board. We had these things to operate, and the interface didn't require us to consult things in our imagination anymore.
I've also been in the other side. Where we've talked and negotiated and stayed in the imaginary area and looked for safe routes around the character sheets and dice and such. Or sometimes we got stuck in areas where the stats, dice and tokens didn't help us resolve things. Except that's more cloud to cloud.
Hmm, here's an example that's more cloud to dice. One 'game' a friend and I went through was sort of 'high level overview of a campaign'. We tracked characters and relevant attributes and relationships on a whiteboard and ran through an imaginary campaign. We mostly talked through what we thought they would do. When we weren't sure what would happen, we flipped a coin and followed the win/lose result. Lots of influece from the cloud there.
What about a heavy dice game? I keep thinking of somesort of computer life simulation where I'm writing a story about the events that happen in the program. Wait, how about playing a game of Arkham Horror? The scenes I imagine going on are almost totally determined by the events in the board game, I just get to add a twist to them that only lives in my head.