thread: 2010-03-01 : Reliable vs Unreliable Currency

On 2010-03-02, Brand Robins wrote:

John, Jonathan,

Not so long ago I snarked at John about the difference between design/theory to "avoid damage" and that to "embrace potential."

I tried to explain to John what I meant, and had a really hard time of it. Which is too bad, because I think its a really important element in this conversation.

When you're in avoiding damage mode ("that sneaking sense of unfairness") going the resource mode may make sense, as it does seem on first blush to be able to avoid a lot of the "damage" that many of us experienced in unfulfilling games in the past. When you're in "embracing potential" mode, otoh, you may be willing to go more with the circumstance mode, as you're looking to do this cool thing, rather than avoid that big problem.

Of course, none of this is to say that a little of both isn't needed, nor that even in embrace potential mode you will always want to go with one or the other, or should do so without building proper supporting structures. But it does get to a core problem I've often had with Forge-diaspora designs—they're often busy using resources to avoid damage in places where I wanted to be judging circumstances with the other people I'm playing with.


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