thread: 2009-04-27 : Dice & Cloud: a Symmetry

On 2009-04-27, valamir wrote:

Vincent, I think you may be linking this phenomenon with rules too tightly.  I think it has less to do with what the rules are having one do, and more to do with how one's
imagination is trained to work.

For instance, I totally have not seen this phenomenon in IaWA.  Our play of IaWA was one of the most successful campaigns producing some of the most powerful fiction I've been a part of since our Polaris game.  The only off session we had was because we were trying to force the game into a dramatically climactic finale, and wound up producing a weak session that we didn't even finish and retroactively deleted from the canon.  But at no time did the resolution seem divorced from the fiction to me at all.

I've seen similar claims about how rules do or don't intersect with imagination in discussions of immersion where people will identify certain techniques as breaking immersion, and I think...hmmm...they don't for me.  I can use those techniqes and get the exact same immersive thrill that I'd get playing with mechanics that are traditionally held to be immersive enhancing.

In both cases I don't think its the mechanics that are what's actually effecting things...I think its how you've trained your imagination to process its imaginings.  Mechanics that refer materially to fictional things IMO are more like crutches in this wheels if you prefer.  But once your imagination is trained to keep the fictional movie in your head playing no matter what else is going on at the table, I don't think such rules are inherently any better than any other rules at contributing to a fully realized SIS.

But then I also happen to think that the lion's share of a game's fiction actually occurs in the unshared part of the Imaginary Space and the Shared part exists only as periodic touch points to synch up the story board.  If you and I play a game we may story board the events of the game the same...but the movies that are playing in our respective heads can be quite different...and that works just fine too.


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