Gente Che Gioca => Sotto il cofano => Topic aperto da: Moreno Roncucci - 2009-07-10 18:21:28

Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Moreno Roncucci - 2009-07-10 18:21:28
In questo thread (, Domon dice:
[cite]Autore: Domon[/cite]io non ci vedo ne l'uno ne l'altro motivo. o meglio entrambi, ma come sintomi di quel male che edwards ha definito il brain damage causato dai gdr tradizionali.

Non contribuiamo a spargere notizie false: Edwards non ha MAI detto che i gdr tradizionali provocano brain damage

Il citatissimo (a sproposito) post sul "Brain Damage" si riferiva a tutt'altro.  Il thread originale è lunghissimo, e si attacca ad un altro thread e al blog di lumpley, ma se volete la versione breve, direttamente dalla voce di Edwards, ascoltatevi questo Podcast ( Se avere problemi con l'inglese parlato, la prima parte (quella sul brain damage) è stata trascritta in questo post ( su

Questo è il transcript della prima parte. Consiglio di ascoltare il podcast mentre lo si legge, per dare il giusto tono alle parole (essendo un transcript, non un intervista, non ci sono indicazioni di questo tipo e a volte può essere difficile capire il senso)

I: What is "Story?" (pause) I know - you're looking at me funny like I'm crazy, but for the next question I'd like to know what.. how you define "Story".

R: Story's a fictional situation that.. engages an audience and.. (heavy emphasis) RESOLVES.

I: Ok. So the next question I want to get into is, um, was it like a year ago, two years ago, you were discussing "Story" and um.. (long pause) White Wolf games, and..

R: That actually dates probably back to 1999.

I: Oh, really? Okay..

R: So what did you have in mind - anything specific?

I: I wanted to know about the whole brain damage comment that you had a lot of flak about. I actually couldn't read and follow that because there was so much being said..

R: Let me lay it out fairly straightforwardly as best as I can. In the early nineties, White Wolf games hit the hobby like a bombshell and, as people will tell you today, revolutionised roleplaying, changed roleplaying, brought roleplaying to a wider audience, raised the bar of production of roleplaying games, and many other things. A great deal of that, I think, is mis-stated, and in this case I'd like to take a look at the design of the games.

I: Ok.

R: If we're talking about, especially that early first round - the original Vampire, Mage, Werewolf in particular, what we see is no coherent reward for play at all. As I see it, the success of those games, and particularly of Vampire, had a lot to do with lucking on to a teen trend of the time which was the percieved edginess and fascination and excitement of people who dressed in leather or black and were sorta scary-looking and hung out at night and stuff like that..

I: (laughter)

R: I mean, you can take that back to bikers in earlier decades, or, you know, any number of other people who or types of activity that have fulfilled that need in teens to "hang with them" and to "be with those guys" or stuff like that. And in the early nineties, we're talking about the Goth thing, and so practically by the time Goth was dead, roleplaying games put out Vampire and you end up with a whole bunch of people who would looove to be with the gothers, and this game was among the many, many, many things they bought in order to buy into it. It was gear, and you could go to these clubs and you would get laid frequently perhaps and you would be involved in this whole goth scene and the girls would show up trying to be bad girls and the guys would show up trying to be cool guys and this whole thing is going on with or without the game, Vampire. And now we have this game, who briefly had a whole bunch of people that roleplaying store owners had never seen before running in with their hands waving over their heads to buy little orcs and to buy another supplement. And this went on for just a little teeny tiny while, but it *did* establish the idea in roleplaying sales and the store system and the distribution system, that this was some kinda big honker and for quite some time that meant that game stores would load their shelves with it, and continue to perpetuate the myth that it was bringing tons more people into the hobby.

Um, now all this is economic, it doesn't have much to do with the brain damage thing. But what I am going to say is that it - through no fault of its own as a game - was strewn across the early collegiate, late high school, scene of roleplaying. It was 1994, 95, 96, what game effectively did you usually run into when you got going in roleplaying? If it wasn't D&D Second Edition it would be Vampire.

Now here's my beef. What's up my nose, why am I annoyed, why am I actually literally pissed off about that? And it has everything to do with what I was talking about, with the reward system of the game. If the game were functioning in a way that paid off for playing it, in a way that made sense to everybody at the table - and you could appreciate it when it happened to someone else as well as yourself - then fine, but it doesn't have that. Instead what you effectively have is.. a mish-mash of combat mechanics that are effectively derived from Shadowrun, you have a mish-mash of character generation which is effectively derived, with a few intermediate steps, from Champions and related point-buy games like GURPS and stuff from the eighties. And you also have this overlay of insisting - verbally insisting, and you should take a look at that first edition Vampire - insisting that this was going to produce not only a watchable cinematic narrative or story - which is to say an arc of rising action on a conflict, and a climactic resolution, and fallout from that - not only was it going to do that but it would also be *literature*. And it would separate you, the person who has bought this game, from all that awful dungeon crawling. Text mattered. Text mattered a great deal. People sitting in their college dorms or in their ?? at high school or whatever poring through this, page by page by page, getting it all wrapped up in their minds just how this is supposed to be done and how this was going to turn out and what it was going to make *them* - and also, by then, membership in these edgy people. You know, it's not geeks anymore, we're the CHILDREN OF THE NIGHT or whatever. This is attracive, I don't really want to mock it, it's an ongoing teen and adolescent issue and it's just going to be here with us as long as we're people - what I'm really driving at is that the game is promising that level of epic literature and reliable creation of rising action, climactic confrontation, and resolution and fallout - and there's really nothing in the game that does anything of the sort. There's a humanity score, when it drops your character's actions are constrained constrained constrained further which is the very opposite of climactic decision in confrontations. It also features this Golden Rule thing. Now let me give you an example of when I read something like the Golden Rule.. well, why don't you tell me the Golden Rule.

I: Well I actually, for the show, I've been calling it Rule Zero. I think we're talking about the same thing..

R: Well, the rule as stated and called the Golden Rule, is "if it's not fun - if the rules are not fun then don't follow the rule this time."

I: Correct.

R: Well, let's see. Here I am. Let's pretend I'm playing any old roleplaying game, so I'm not picking on Vampire or anything right here in this particular moment, I'm saying let's look at any roleplaying game. And we have that rule, it's explicit, and the rule says "this is how we do it and we do this because we're *real* roleplayers and we don't like the dice and the rules to rule our fun" or some similar statement. Okay. Umm.... The... you know, the prince of the city has told us, the weeny vampires, that we have to go trotting across the city and get the jade amulet and so we get the guy with the jade amulet and we're taking him back to the prince and, wham, the NPC jumps out of the dark alley and he's a badass and he smacks my character and smacks the other character and I say "ok, we attack back" or whatever - they're grabbing the guy with the amulet of course, or this guy is - and we say "we attack back" or whatever and the GM says, oh well you know, he gets away. (pause) And you're kinda going... "well, actually by that rule that you said, that wasn't fun".

I: (laughs)

Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Moreno Roncucci - 2009-07-10 18:23:34
R: "Can we do it this other way that we can do according to the book or there's these other rule options, or maybe the GM uses a rule and says well this guy's got an Obfuscate of such-and-such and I rolled and that was his success, and I'm kinda like, well yea but that wasn't fun so why can't you not do that?" I don't think I've ever seen that Golden Rule applied as I just described. It, in application, means "things go my way if I'm the GM". That's what it means in application. So effectively what you have is this notion not of story creation through the processes of communication during play, the processes of procedure, of activities that you carry out at the table with each other communicating - no, you will, IF you get a story, it's because the GM felt like making one up, had one in his head beforehand, or makes it up as he goes along as you play. And that's what story comes from. Now that's the confusion in many cases - that story is product. You talk to a group like that, they say "oh but we *did* make a story, it was a great story!" and you're kinda saying "well yea but I watched you play, I'm maybe even playing in the group with you, and I didn't see you actually make story. I saw a story get imposed upon play." It's different. I'm not talking about product, I'm talking about process.

When somebody's making up a story, there is a point in the history of time when the story does not exist. I don't care if this is right before his first rough draft, I don't care if this is right before his final cut, I don't care where it comes in that particular person's process but there will come a point where there wasn't a story and now there is. What happens in that person's mind is a matter of some debate - you can talk to creative people all you want to and you're going to just run into days of debate - what I do know is that those things can also occur at the group level of discussion and it's not just freeform consensus until everybody agrees and moves onto the next scene. It is, in fact, a procedure, a dynamic interaction that generates results that no one person could possibly have predicted or imposed. That's what I mean when I say "story now". It means that the process of actually making the damn thing is occuring here, during play, the processes of play. That's opposed to what I like to call "story before" which is where somebody sits down in play fully aware of the story in mind, as much as saying, well then they're going to confront this villain at the end of, well you know we're going to be playing for about four or five hours, I figure with one hour left they're going to confront the villain around then. And I used to run my games like that, I used to sit down and play Champions and I'd have that in mind, and I was improvisational enough, you know, and I had enough stuff going on in the game that I could kind of stall them a little bit in the first round of play and throw them a few clues, and play the NPCs, and maybe had a revelation they could find out along the way, but roundabout an hour to go I was set. And then, ok, you find him. So where'd the story come from, effectively speaking? It came from me.

And then you have "story after" where *nothing* really happens at the time, it's all a big mess, but people go back in their heads, or perhaps one person in prepping for the next session sort of dissects a bunch of stuff that you can cobble together to make into that story with the rising action, narration, and stuff and treats it that way, so that's kinda "story after". The processes of play really didn't produce one that was enjoyed as a story at the time. So does that clarify a little bit about the story before, story after, story now?

I: Actually, tons compared to what little I had grasped of it so far.

R: Excellent. So let's move to getting to your real question, which is this business about the brain damage. What I am saying is that people have aesthetic interests in role-playing, a lot of us really would like to have this "story now" experience and actually be authors and audience at the same time, get all the best of both worlds in that regard, the same way that musicians playing music get the best of both worlds, of being both creators and audience to the music at the same time. Musicians do that. Not *everybody* wants that, and I don't even want it all the time. You know, I played cut-throat today! "Story now" my ass, I was there to become the top dog in that cut-throat motorcycle band and we were going to have a great time just playing dominating, going on raids, sending our girlfriends to go and winkle out each other's secrets, and you know, you play opposition to other people's conflicts and so you try and come up with conflicts that would be humiliating if they lost so that way they'd be hampered in the bragging rights competition in the next phase - you know, it's competitive. That's a blast if that's what we're all for. There's many different approaches and as you know I think they can be categorised fairly easily into distinctive things, creative agendas, at the table with the group.

What I'm saying is that let's take whatever subset of teenagers who were hit by this pack of games, the White wolf games and their ilk, which is to say a wide variety of games that were a very strong attempt to be just like them..

I: Games with attribute/skill..?

R: Not just attribute and skill, but the whole idea of this dark edgy outsider, you know..

I: Okay.

R: Smooth blend of the X-files and Nightmare on Elm Street perhaps.

I: You're talking more about the feeling than the rules.

R: I am, and so that's very attractive - I mean, I didn't even really mean that derisively, you know, if you want to say "X-Files and Nightmare on Elm Street" I'll say well that sounds kinda fun, I could do that.

I: They're both cool.

R: But the issue is, you get a bunch of people who see that, that's the medium of play is that imaginative context right there that I've just described, and they are also totally into it because of all the teen effects that I've talked about before and now they're convinced - some of them, some of them just blaze over all that reading stuff that had to do with story this and story that, they just want to make badass vampires and kick butt, that's fine - others, you know, they wanna dress up. They love Anne Rice, they wanna dress up like an Anne Rice character and act like an Anne Rice character and that's good too, especially if you can do it at the table then go off and do it at the LARP and maybe get laid that night. Whatever. But the deal is that neither of those are the only things that people would want out of Vampire. Some people reading those texts, of what amazing epic thematically significant stories were going to emerge from all this - and that's high art - they were impressed! And well they should be, if someone promised me something like that, I would jump at it! I get to do that with role-playing? Yea, baby! They sit down, they try to play it and what do they encounter? They never encounter that. They encounter at most story before and story after.

Well, I was a determined teen, I read everything imaginable - RuneQuest and Champions - with this determination of this particular kind of desire. And I read everything you could imagine of those games and many others, trying to cobble together some way to get that "story now" thing going. And occasionally succeeding. There actually are some secondary texts in both games that really are very inspiring and fully of really great instructions for that - and then there's a bunch of other instructions that are about other things.. but, the issue is that the game never told me that it was gonna do that. I was just determined to do it. Here, the game *is* telling you. So what's going to be the perfectly reasonable and rational response - especially if you're looking at people who are effectively the equivalent of young filmmakers and young musicians, and if it doesn't work out the first time, what reasonably and rationally are they going to try to do tomorrow? They're gonna try again. They're gonna try again, harder. They're going to buy into it *more*. And in the case of the White Wolf games, I mean "buy into it more" very literally, because of the extremely cynical supplement model those games were working with especially in the mid nineties.

And at that time, think about people in their teens who are struggling to do this, the more it doesn't work, and the more they find ways of arriving at story in some ways that really aren't all that fun, the harder and harder and harder they're going to glom onto their difficult solutions. Here's one of those difficult solutions: effectively sitting down and talking at one another - not knowing when to roll the dice at all, and that's where you get these anecdotes, the one I'm thinking about is where they spent 45 minutes with a vampire trying to operate a copy machine because they didn't have the skills for it and they were trying to use the dice to have this happen and they were just really frustrated because they didn't even really know when to roll dice and when not to, and so they're saying well we're gonna talk most of the time and then sometimes when we're supposed to we're going to roll these things. And that doesn't work out very well - what's the "sometimes"? When do you roll the dice? There's no reward system to go to, either. There's no way to look and say well, what is my payoff for playing, when are we going to get that epic story? Well, then you have another form of vampire play, which is the highly metaplot based one, which many many many of the supplements do that, and you read the supplements and they effectively just order the players to do this and that. You know. "Then the ghouls attack. After you kill the ghouls..."; this is the old D&D style of supplement making - "when the ghouls attack... after the players have killed them off they'll pursue the leader of the ghouls". It's very locked in, what the players are going to do. And in those groups you get this kind of obedience thing where they all become very very good at sort of opening their mouths like baby birds for the GM to drop in the next thing that they're supposed to do, and then they bust out their combat mechanics and stuff and dutifully fight the ghouls and nobody really seems to worry about whether somebody's going to go down or not because they never do - of course they'll get their asses kicked by the big NPC who comes along and teaches them a lesson once in a while. But that's the other form which is, effectively speaking, the group - or the people in the group who are inclined in that direction - just give up on the "story now" thing. Others take over and find dysfunctional ways, like for example somebody who says "well we are going to have a story here dammit, I'm going to basically emotionally and socially dominate these people until they accept my story!" And you find that - people who all insist about how Stan is the most amazing GM, he makes the best stories.

Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Moreno Roncucci - 2009-07-10 18:23:44
And so a lot of these things existed before the mid-nineties but I think in the mid-nineties is when we actually see it being demograptically settled into the minds of the people who are determined to find "story now". One of the nice things about the late seventies was the extremely broad array of mismatched game mechanics just scattered across a wide range of games, and the idea being that if the group was into "story now" kind of play, or into highly competitive play, or highly modelling-the-world-around-them play, or an imaginary world, you know, all those things, they could probably excise pieces of a variety of different games and glue other pieces together and come up with a way to play. That kind of house ruling - which was effectively rewriting and making your own game without thinking about it - was pretty common throughout eighties play. And when I think back to all the groups that I knew back in the eighties, most of them actually did pretty well in terms of having a great time. A number of them didn't if they ran into issues of, usually "story before" where somebody dreamed of writing his fantasy novel and then wanted to move all the characters through this fantasy novel but that was relatively rare in comparison. And people who didn't like being shoved around would grab a couple other people and start another group that was more to their tastes.

I: Right.

R: It was in the mid-nineties that I think, a bunch of people were hit at the right time with the right promises, the right subcultural context - and the wrongest possible game to attempt to satisfy it in such a way that they would sieze upon it and insist in their own minds that this *must* deliver, to make it deliver you have to do a whole bunch of things that are effectively not going to work. That sounds contradictory, to make it deliver you're going to do things that don't work, but that's effectively what happens. You get monstrous railroading, you get monstrous flailing about when to use or not use the resolution system, you get incredible social games to try to keep the group together - because if you can't keep the group together, then it's not working, so people will pull all kinds of head games on each other to keep the group together. Why is it specific to "story now"? Because the other itches can get much more easily scratched. You can ignore a bunch of stuff in Vampire and play a fairly highly competitive game and enjoy it. It can be done. It's harder - you've got to really give up on 50% of the stuff in the book to do it, it's harder than it would have been with a lot of the earlier games - but you can do it. But if you try to do that and get rid of a lot of the competitive elements in the game, you know, like in Werewolf for example there's many competitive elements, but you want to do some "story now" Werewolf so you slice out some of those competitive elements but what's left isn't going to work.

And so my claim, is that you get a number of people who are so internally and externally trained to play in a way that is impossible to satisfy. And the reason I call it brain damage is because it's ingrained at that developmental level of these people coming into adulthood.

I: So you're not talking about physicality, then?

P: Is behaviour physiological?

I: Good question.

P: Is behaviour physiological? Do you have hormones, do you have brain impulses, do you have electricity in your head? We do. And the way that those turn into what we call personality is through experience - that's a physiological process. If a person has undergone a serious trauma - say as a pre-teen - and their ability to cope with later situations that remind them of that trauma, or may not even be exactly the same trauma but they've got it so ingrained in them that they'll react to it as though it is - is that or is that not damage to that person? Did not the person who inflicted the trauma on that pre-teen cause damage?

I: Right... What I'm stumbling on, I guess is that, probably this would lead off to a debate that I'm not sure I'm ready to get into because that would take away from everywhere else that I'd like to go, but, um.. I think that you're completely right that all those things exist, and I also think there's a function of us - I think it's multi-level, multi-layered, and so I understand what you're saying that there's a level where the behaviour actually would make .. it does have some kind of thing..

R: Let me make it a little clearer. I wouldn't call it "damage" if we was talking about people who were experiencing all these phenomena I'm talking about at 25. Because that's when, I mean there are other things going on for the person but, on the average, people at the ages I'm talking about are putting together the kind of adults they're going to be.

I: Ok, let me try this again.. what's tripping me up, personally, if you take a stake and drive it in a guy's head that's obviously brain damage, I understand that, that's physical. If you were to jump across the table and grab me by the throat, and then I'm afraid to get near your house again or something, I understand there's some kind of basis there but that's what tripping me up - I personally don't see that as physical and that's why I'm having a hard time following.

R: I understand that. That's why we should probably focus on what I keep mentioning, which is the business of the teen mind developing into the adult mind.

I: Aahhh! That makes it more clear, because the brain isn't fully developed?

R: Right. Well, whether it's ever *fully* fully developed is one thing, it is continually added to, but there are definate windows and steps and things that will occur between the pre-teen phase and the earlier twenties that have a lot to do with what we might call values, habits, standards of behaviour and expectations.

I: Now, that is absolutely perfectly clear to me what you're saying now.

R: So with that in mind, we're ending up then with folks who in many cases are extremely obsessively hanging on to their loyalty to this particular game and/or games like it, or the standards of play that it represents, which of course are now widely imitated by many many others, and there they are trying to make this "story now" stuff. You see, everything I'm talking about has absolutely nothing to do with people with other priorities. The game may have served them well, it may have served them badly depending on how they used it, but they probably went on to something else if they didn't like it.

I: Right, I totally played the hell out of that game in the nineties and went on to other stuff.

R: Sure, and I'm not sure what particular kind of rewards and fun and standards of what you wanted you brought to it, but whatever it may be, when you realised that it wasn't really delivering on it you moved on. Or maybe it *did* deliver and you were done. I don't know.

I: It would probably be that, different stories.. different genres, different everything, right. Because I played the hell out of it.

R: What did you get out of it? What was fun?

I: For me I'm big into immersive play so a lot of the times we just ignored a lot of it and socially resolved things without a system.

R: Right, do you want my jargon for what you just described?

I: Go, jargon away.

R: Extremely strong character exploration. And if it didn't necessarily generate "story now" in the long run or the short run or either way, and if that wasn't really an issue, you just got to be, you know, Vlad..

I: Sometimes that's totally what I would be going for, right.

R: Then it would deliver. You would have to excise a good - I'm going to estimate based on my memory of first edition.

I: Probably a good 80-90% of it.

R: I was going to say actually 70, but you're probably right with the experience but a hell of a lot of the book has to get junked. You just read the cover text at the beginning and that's pretty much all you did.

I: Everything on it was just a guide, I mean, Humanity's just a guide, right..

R: Well, it depends. Is it just a guide or did you ignore it?

I: We used it for the roleplaying, so it wasa guide, but..

R: But as a mechanic it wasn't really a powerful thing?

I: It wasn't enforced, so I guess if you felt it was appropriate for it to go down then that's what would happen.

R: Now what I'm stating in this example is that with what you've just described, I wouldn't characterise your experience of the game of Vampire as anything like what I'm describing. I'm saying there's who knows how many people who came to Vampire, scratched their itch or didn't scratch their itch and either way we're done or either way continue playing, whatever.

I: No, I totally did get in games like what you're talking about and I didn't stick with those.

R: Right. Now the people who stuck with them were the ones who wanted the "story now" and were convinced that this was supposed to deliver.

I: Ahh..

R: And that would generate now, habits of play, habits of the sociality of play, and shall we say a protectivness over what they were doing. These groups often tend to become very private, they tend to become very very oriented toward "our special group because we make stories". And they also have tendancy to, well, display a whole lot of social fragmentation that no-one ever really wants to talk about. In many groups of this kind when I talk to people, or people with this play history, they'll talk all about their GM Stan or whatever and you kinda say "so what.. how did Stan get this going? How did you all get this going while, you know, Henry was running the game?" And they talk for a little while, and they say "well, you know, things didn't really work out" and a few sentence fragment and then they say "well, then Stan started doing *this*" and there was no transition, their transition's very incoherent, they don't talk about how there was this enormous power struggle between Stan and Henry in terms of whose story was actually going to rule. Stan was a player in the game who was really pissed off that he didn't get the story he wanted out of Henry's games and he basically pulled a coup.
Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Moreno Roncucci - 2009-07-10 18:42:00
Tutto il podcast dura 100 minuti circa (un ora e 40 minuti) ma la trascrizione copre solo i primi 30, circa. Ed è un peccato perché manca la parte in cui si specifica meglio di che tipo di "danno" sta parlando (e poi passa anche ad altri argomenti)

Come vedete, Edwards parla di un gioco specifico, in una situazione specifica, e solo per giocatori molto giovani. E parla di comportamenti.

Ovviamente, visto che internet è quello che è, e il livello d'attenzione medio di chi legge i post idem, da qui in breve si è sparsa la voce che "Edwards ha detto che tutti quelli che giocano ad un gdr tradizionale subiscono danni al cervello"

Non ho né le conoscenze scientifiche nè abbastanza esperienza con "ragazzi che abbiano giocato a vampire per anni cercando una CA narrativista mentre erano molto giovani" (credo di non averne mai conosciuto manco uno) quindi non vado in giro, come tanti altri, a dire che non può essere vero o no.  

Quello che so è che è scorretto parlare qui di quello che "Edwards pensa". Quando potete chiederglielo direttamente su the Forge.  Qui chiedete al massimo a me cosa penso dei danni prodotti da D&D, che li conosco meglio...  :-)

Ho postato questo thread all'inizio solo a scopo informativo, chiudendolo ad ulteriori post, perché sinceramente non ho molta fiducia nella capacità di discutere pubblicamente questi temi senza arrivare al flame. Però, dopo averci pensato parecchio (e ancora ho qualche dubbio) ho deciso di riaprirlo. Di dare fiducia agli utenti di gentechegioca.  Ma alla minima polemica chiudo tutto di nuovo...
Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Simone Micucci - 2009-07-10 21:27:56
Qui chiedete al massimo a me cosa penso dei danni prodotti da D&D, che li conosco meglio...

Cosa pensi dei danni prodotti da d&d? (non sono in cerca di polemica, giuro ^^)
Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Moreno Roncucci - 2009-07-10 22:46:55
[cite]Autore: -Spiegel-[/cite]Cosa pensi dei danni prodotti da d&d?

Che li vedi ogni volta che vedi com'è ridotto il mondo del role-playing...
Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Simone Micucci - 2009-07-11 00:27:28
lapidario -_-
quindi per te la colpa è da attribuirsi solo a d&d?
Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Renato Ramonda - 2009-07-11 00:56:38
Beh, ha un senso... ci ripetono da sempre che DnD ha il 95% del mercato e gli altri non contano niente... se qualcuno ha fatto qualcosa dev'essere stato DnD, no? :)
Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Ezio - 2009-07-11 01:00:21
Ragazzi, ma soprattutto Moreno, nel caso sorga davvero una discussione, potreste specificare di quale D&D parlate? Giusto perché così riuscirei a seguirla meglio.
Scatola Rossa? 3.X? Advanced? Tutto "l'universo" D&D?

@Renato: Il ragionamento non fa una grinza. XD
Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Moreno Roncucci - 2009-07-11 01:59:20
[cite]Autore: Aetius[/cite]Ragazzi, ma soprattutto Moreno, nel caso sorga davvero una discussione, potreste specificare di quale D&D parlate? Giusto perché così riuscirei a seguirla meglio.
Scatola Rossa? 3.X? Advanced? Tutto "l'universo" D&D?

Non importa quale, sarebbero tutti off-topic in questo thread...  :-)
Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Eishiro - 2009-07-11 08:22:40

mi sento perfettamente di concordare con Edwards con gli effetti devastanti dei giochi WW sul cervello di un giocatore....

@moreno:apri un thread dove spieghi il BD di D&D no?
Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Gabriele Pellegrini - 2009-07-11 12:23:01
[cite]Autore: Moreno Roncucci[/cite]
[cite]Autore: -Spiegel-[/cite][p]Cosa pensi dei danni prodotti da d&d?[/p]
[p]Che li vedi ogni volta che vedi com'è ridotto il mondo del role-playing...[/p]

AP? :D
Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Niccolò - 2009-07-11 13:43:47
i danni di dnd... direi che DIPENDONO dalla versione.
non so, agli albori c'erano i fanatici della one true way, ai tempi di adnd una saturazione del mercato ridicola e la "dnd fallacy" del simulazionismo+gamismo. dnd3 ha creato un mercato e poi un riflusso di mercato che ha distrutto molte piccole case poco accorte. dnd4, forse, niente, almeno per ora.

e poi c'è la mitica "cultura del marchietto"


mi sento perfettamente di concordare con Edwards con gli effetti devastanti dei giochi WW sul cervello di un giocatore....

per inciso: il discorso è praticamente intercambiabile mettendo "parpuzio" al posto di "giochi white wolf", non so se si nota aabbastanza :)
Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Ezio - 2009-07-11 14:45:18
[cite]Autore: Domon[/cite][p]i danni di dnd... direi che DIPENDONO dalla versione.
non so, agli albori c'erano i fanatici della one true way, ai tempi di adnd una saturazione del mercato ridicola e la "dnd fallacy" del simulazionismo+gamismo. dnd3 ha creato un mercato e poi un riflusso di mercato che ha distrutto molte piccole case poco accorte. dnd4, forse, niente, almeno per ora.[/p][p]e poi c'è la mitica "cultura del marchietto"[/p]

Nuovo thread?
Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Eishiro - 2009-07-11 21:25:24
[cite]Autore: Domon[/cite]per inciso: il discorso è praticamente intercambiabile mettendo "parpuzio" al posto di "giochi white wolf", non so se si nota aabbastanza :)

i WW son il peggio possibile, inoltre fa riferimenti specifici alla "cultura goth del cappero" (per non usare parole volgari) che ruota attorno a vampiri e simili
Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Niccolò - 2009-07-12 04:12:01
i WW hanno generato l'ondata di regola-zero e di design basati sugli splat...
Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: mattia somenzi - 2009-07-12 09:27:56
nulla è meglio di 30mila battute in inglese per combattere la disinformazione ^_^'

non si puo' essere un pelo piu' sintetici? ..giusto per l'amore della divulgazione, chi è interessato sicuramente approfondisce
Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Moreno Roncucci - 2009-07-12 11:18:46
[cite]Autore: vertigo[/cite]nulla è meglio di 30mila battute in inglese per combattere la disinformazione ^_^

O meglio, nulla è meglio del far sentire le parole diretter di una persona, per far sapere cosa dice veramente...  :-)

[cite]Autore: vertigo[/cite]non si puo' essere un pelo piu' sintetici? ..giusto per l'amore della divulgazione, chi è interessato sicuramente approfondisce

Ma il riassunto sintetico l'ho già fatto!

"non è vero che Ron Edwards ha detto che i giochi tradizionali provocano Brain Damage"

Perché quella è l'accusa che ha fatto il giro di un sacco di forum nel mondo (vista poi la precisione con cui nei forum su riportano le cose...). Che in una conversazione (non in un articolo o un post di teoria) nel suo forum "privato" avesse detto questa cosa.  Mentre non è vero.

Questo è il succo del post. Nell'intervista Edwards specifica come la pensa, a titolo personale, ma non è forge theory.

E ho dato il link all'intervista proprio perché è molto più breve dei thread che avevano dato vita alla diceria...   :-)

A questo proposito, DOPO (e solo dopo) che ha ascoltato il podcast precedente (che spiega con notevole chiarezza tutto il casino, e inquadra la situazione), per chi volesse approfondire, adesso do qualche link ai thread originale (e solo qualche: all'epoca la cosa fini su decine e decine di discussioni diverse in blog e forum). Ebbene sì, ancora altri link in inglese, alcuni dei quali richiedono pure di conoscere le regole di Sorcerer.

L'unica alternativa al leggersi i testi in inglese, su questa cosa, è beccarmi ad una convention, pagarmi una birra (che la spiegazione è lunga) e chiedermi di spiegarlo a parole...  :-)

Adesso, state buoni e non crosspostate intanto che cerco i link e li post nel prossimo messaggio...
Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Eishiro - 2009-07-12 12:26:48
[cite]Autore: Domon[/cite][p]i WW hanno generato l'ondata di regola-zero e di design basati sugli splat...[/p]

assolutamente la regola zero esisteva già prima
Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Moreno Roncucci - 2009-07-12 12:31:47
Dobbiamo tornare indietro nel tempo, al 2006.

L'inizio del 2006 è, credo, il periodo di massimo "splendore" di The Forge. Alla fine del 2005 sono stati chiusi i forum di pura teoria che erano diventati raccolte di thread sul sesso degli angeli, ed era stata istituita la regola (prima era solo un consiglio) "se volete parlare di teoria qui dentro, fatelo partendo dall'actual play" con il sottoforum "actual play" designato come luogo per queste discussioni. L'innovazione nel design fa passi da gigante, un gioco dietro l'altro, a partire dal 2004-2005 con la pubblicazione di Primetime Adventures e Dogs in the Vineyard c'era stato l'inizio dell'allargamento del mercato ai giocatori "tradizionali". Story-games era appena nata e funzionava bene.

Ho una certa nostalgia di quel periodo (che è quello in cui anch'io ho iniziato a postarci). C'era un ottimismo generale e una solidità dell'ambiente, e un interesse alla SOSTANZA delle cose, che ora non vedo più. Di lì a pochi mesi ci fu il gigantesco boom di vendite di GenCon 2006 (con il forge booth terzo per vendite dietro a WotC e WW), l'arrivo di una valanga di nuovi utenti, soprattutto (anzi, esclusivamente) sul più "amichevole" story-games, e i problemi causati dal troppo successo, dalle gare di status fra gli autori (e il radicarsi di "quelli che si atteggiano un casino" scacciati da The Forge sul nuovo terreno fertile di story-games).  A Gencon 2006 c'è anche una famigerata conferenza "privata" di Edwards nell'hotel dove stanno gli autori forgiti sui problemi che ha visto nell'actual play di diversi giochi (intuendo con largo anticipo il problema che ho descritto nel thread Come diffondere maniere sbagliate di giocare (ovvero: post-forge) ( Se gli avessero dato retta adesso ci sarebbero molti meno problemi, ma l'effetto invece è di allontanare ancora più autori dalle critiche di un leader di fatto visto come troppo puntiglioso e opprimente, rispetto alle folle adoranti di story-games per cui ogni gioco è un capolavoro.

Ma i problemi di troppa crescita post- gencon 2006 sono ancora là da venire, nel gennaio-febbraio 2006.  E', come ho detto, il momento di massimo ottimismo. Si pensa non solo di creare giochi migliori per se' stessi (come era all'inizio, senza tante ambizioni) ma di poter "curare" l'intero mondo del gdr (alcuni), o, vedendolo come ormai "incurabile", puntare a superarlo portando il gdr anche a chi non era minimamente interessato ai gdr tradizionali. E' in questo clima che nascono progetti estremamente ambiziosi, sia dal punto del game design che dal punto di vista "politico", come Spione.

Si parla proprio di questo, un bel giorno di fine gennaio 2006, nel Blog di Vincent Baker.  Il post è 2006-01-24 : Still More Character Ownership (  Riporto interamente il testo, tanto è corto:

I was searching through the past of the Forge and I came across this that I wrote back in May of last year:

So here are two points for you:

    1. Sometimes it's fun and good for your PC to be a supporting character, not a protagonist. Thus, yes, prey to all the crap that befalls supporting characters, including random death.

    2. Sometimes, then, it's also fun and good to not know whether your PC is a supporting character until some moment of truth. In fact further: to not get to choose yourself whether your PC is a protagonist or a supporting character, to let the events of the game's fiction choose. Your PC's random death may well be just such a moment.

    There's no reason in the world why any gamer would recognize the truth of these two points out of hand. They're hard won. Having a gamer-like relationship with your PC makes them seem impossible, doesn't it?

    [from "Early death in Nar games".]

Let me say in boldface:

Let the events of the game's fiction choose whether your character is a protagonist or a supporting character.

I know of only one game in development that's taking this on (Ron Edwards' Spione). Are we still obsessed with securing our personal characters' relevance? Is the threat that our personal characters will be somehow made irrelevant still so urgent?[/i]

Anche questo post è da inquadrare in un momento storico preciso del design "forgita": all'inizio il problema molto sentito, dopo anni di "gdr tradizionale" in cui i personaggi spesso erano deprotagonistizzati ed usati come pedine da NPC molto più potenti di loro, era il garantirne il "protagonismo". Sorcerer, e il concetto di gioco a Bangs e Kickers (come quelli di Sorcerer, ma anche quelli di Non Cedere al Sonno) nasceva da questa esigenza: se giochiamo per creare storie, dobbiamo esserne protagonisti, non semplici "pedine" nella storia creata dal GM.

Questo concetto è stata una delle prima "rivoluzioni" forgite, e ha dato vita a design innovativi come, per esempio, La Mia Vita col Padrone, un gioco che sviluppa le tecniche per dare protagonismo al punto tale da poter rendere "protagonisti" a tutto tondo i servitori, gli Igor della situazione, e non il Padrone.  Con LMVcP le tecniche di design forgita sono arrivate al punto tale da aver risolto, una volta per tutte, il problema del protagonismo. Si può rendere protagonista chiunque, con un design adeguato.

Ma questa, è da considerarsi una tecnica, da usare in un certo tipo di gioco, o il "protagonismo" dei PC è un bene in assoluto?

Dal 2005 circa proprio gli autori che avevano risolto il problema del protagonismo iniziano a lavorare a giochi che superano anche quel limite: giochi con cui puoi creare storie senza che i protagonisti siano per forza i PC (o meglio: Czege è il primo con Acts of Evil - non ancora pubblicato - in cui i protagonisti devono essere NPC, Baker con In a Wicked Age punta ad un gioco in cui non tutti i PC siano protagonisti e il protagonismo si debba "meritare", e Edwards punta ancora più lontanmo, ad un gioco dove gli stessi concetti di PC e NPC scompaiano, Spione). E la cosa riceve reazioni quasi scandalizzate da molti utenti di The Forge, che hanno iniziato a vedere il protagonismo dei loro PC come una condizione essenziale per il divertimento, e non una tecnica come un altra.

Il post di Baker è in risposta a queste critiche e ribadisce il suo interesse verso questi nuovi design in cui il protagonista non sia prefissato.    Nei commenti successivi al thread,  Ron Edwards, con la sua proverbiale delicatezza  (  :-)  ) in questo commento ( lega queste reazioni ai "danni" subiti dai giocatori "tradizionali":

My response, which is actually a diagnosis of the existing activity:

Yes, "we" are still obsessed, in the manner that you have described. It's a creative and technical illness, much in the sense that early cinema was hampered by the assumption that what they filmed should look like a stage-set, viewed front-on, from the same distance, at all times.

The design decisions I've made with my current project are so not-RPG, but at the same time so dismissive of what's ordinarily called "consensual storytelling," that I cannot even begin to discuss it on-line. I can see the influences of Universalis, The Mountain Witch, and My Life with Master, but I cannot articulate the way that I have abandoned the player-character, yet preserved the moral responsibility of decision-making during play. That's all I'll say here, and I won't answer questions about it.

More specific to your question, Vincent, I'll say this: that protagonism was so badly injured during the history of role-playing (1970-ish through the present, with the height of the effect being the early 1990s), that participants in that hobby are perhaps the very last people on earth who could be expected to produce *all* the components of a functional story. No, the most functional among them can only be counted on to seize protagonism in their stump-fingered hands and scream protectively. You can tag Sorcerer with this diagnosis, instantly.

[The most damaged participants are too horrible even to look upon, much less to describe. This has nothing to do with geekery. When I say "brain damage," I mean it literally. Their minds have been *harmed.*]

Perhaps Primetime Adventures, My Life with Master, Dogs in the Vineyard, Polaris, etc etc, are really the best available prosthetics possible, permitting the damaged populace to do X? If so, what will people with limbs prefer to use, to do X?

I don't know. I can see its parts forming, as with a mid-term embryo, but what it will be and how it will work, and who will use it for what purposes, I don't know. My current project may be right on track with it, or I may be veering off in a hopeless direction.

(Questa è un analisi dello stato dell'hobby che trova anche me 100% concorde, by the way).

Questo quote forse è la fonte principale dell'idea che Edwards parli di tutti i giochi tradizionali in generale quando dice "Brain Damage".  Ma se leggete bene, la butta lì (in un commento in un blog personale di un suo amico) come se fosse una cosa di cui hanno già parlato varie volte, relativa a casi relativi ai "most damaged partecipants", e anche il "danno" di cui parla, è relativo all'AMBIENTE, non ai giochi.

(questa fra l'altro è la mia risposta alle domande precedenti su D&D: come gioco per far fuori goblin e coboldi senza tante pretese va benissimo, ma l'ambiente che si è creato attorno è terrificante...)

E' nei commenti a questo post che si scatenano le prime polemiche ed insulti, che poi si trasferiranno su The Forge e altro.

Due giorni dopo, Vincent posta il famoso post 2006-01-26 : A Public Service Announcement: You are not safe here. (, una vera e propria "dichiarazione di guerra al buonismo nei gdr" che per oltre un anno è stata in cima come sticky al suo blog e che mi piaceva un sacco. Mi è dispiaciuto quanto l'ha tolta...  

A questo punto, cronologicamente ci sono i thread su the forge che descriverò nei prossimi post. Ma Baker dedica, in seguito, un altro blog post alla questione, (dopo che era stato chiarito a chi si riferiva Edwards e perchè), questo qui: 2006-02-12 : Brain Damage (, da cui traggo questo suo commento:

I've been doing pretty serious RPG-as-fiction theory outreach for a couple years now, right?

Brain-damaged-as-such or not, some people have a really, really, really hard time understanding. I say, "look, here's a conflict" and they just can't read it.

It's not - I'm pretty sure - it's not because they can read it but they disagree. When that happens, they say "that's not a conflict, because blah blah." And I say "oh, you're right, how about this conflict instead?" And they say "cool, go on." Or else I say "it IS a conflict, because blah blah." And they say "oh, yeah, cool, go on." Or else they say "conflict, getcha, but I really don't care about conflicts" and I say "cool, to each her own."

No, as far as I can tell, it's because they just can't read it. They can read the words, but at a certain level they're functionally illiterate.

I'm not thinking of anyone in particular here. Just reflecting on my experience overall.

Is "functionally illiterate," I wonder, more offensive or less than "brain damaged"?

Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Mattia Bulgarelli - 2009-07-12 15:09:54
[cite]Autore: Moreno Roncucci[/cite][p]Ma il riassunto sintetico l'ho già fatto![/p][p]"non è vero che Ron Edwards ha detto che i giochi tradizionali provocano Brain Damage"[/p][p]Perché quella è l'accusa che ha fatto il giro di un sacco di forum nel mondo (vista poi la precisione con cui nei forum su riportano le cose...)[/p]

Dì loro che lo dico io. :P
Titolo: [chiarimento leggende urbane] Brain Damage
Inserito da: Moreno Roncucci - 2009-07-12 15:33:49
Mentre sul blog di Lumpley infuriano le polemiche, contemporaneamente su The Forge si discute di actual play, relativamente al gioco "sorcerer".

(non ho il tempo qui di parlare delle peculiarità di "sorcerer", che sono parecchie, spero che i thread siano comprensibili lo stesso).

La prima scintilla è nella sezione "actual play", con il thread del 9 febbraio 2006 [Sorcerer & Sword] Oh, the Shame! ( che descrive una partita problematica di Sorcerer giocata ad una convention tedesca.

Cosa avviene durante questa partita? Lo stesso fenomeno contro cui metto in guardia sempre, fino all'esasperazione: Sorcerer viene giocato come un gioco "tradizionale" (Edwards nella risposta specifica persino che è stato giocato come Over the Edge...).

Il thread è molto sereno e tranquillo, non ci sono polemiche. Se volete leggerlo presenta una buona spiegazione della differenza fra conflict resolution e task resolution e dà alcune indicazioni molto utili su come gestire l'Humanity e i conflitti in Sorcerer, ma se non avete intenzione di giocare Sorcerer a breve e avete già ben chiara la differenza fra CR e TR (che non niente a che vedere con scale o scene), non vi perdete niente a saltarlo.

Perché è la scintilla? Perché da questa osservazione, o meglio da questa specifica frase di Edwards:
Citazione da: "Ron Edwards"
What concerns me about the dice is that complex group resolution in Sorcerer is easier, faster, and more reliably decisive than any RPG known, relative to the detail. (Yes, Dogs fans, it's true.) Yet for some reason people keep insisting on playing it as if it were Vampire or Over the Edge, adding complications like initiative in the former case and reducing it to freeform with arbitrary "roll now" bits in the latter.

...prende il via un nuovo thread, stavolta (ed è un osservazione importante) nel "forum personale" di Ron, quello dedicato alla Adept Press.
Perché è importante sapere il sotto-forum? Perché molti non si rendono conto di come funzionano i sotto-forum su The Forge. Sono veramente "spazi personali", in cui il content moderator del sito (Edwards) non è il moderatore, e ciascuno gestisce il suo spazio come meglio crede. Ed Edwards nel suo spazio personale (che chiama "tequila forum", tanto per dare un idea...) è molto più rilassato che non sul "the forge vero e proprio". "The forge vero e proprio", cioè i primi sottoforum che si trovano nella homepage, hanno uno scopo preciso, un mission statement: aiutare la diffusione e la creazione di gdr indie. I sottoforum (compreso quello di Edwards) NO. Il sottoforum dell'Adept press è uno spazio per parlare specificatamente dei suoi giochi,chiedere consigli e fare quattro chiacchiere bevendo tequila...

Il thread in questione è [Sorcerer] Why Group Conflict Is So Confusing...  ( Il cambio di tono penso sia evidente, se avete letto il thread precedente (in "Actual play") in cui Edwards ci va con le molle per assicurarsi di usare le parole giuste e non offendere nessuno, e questo in cui minaccia di "sparare nelle rotule al prossimo bastardo...  ehm, non tu, Jesse, il prossimo!". Qui siamo nel tequila forum.

Qui c'è la prima menzione di "brain damage" su the forge, assieme all'ALTRA osservazione (già fatta anch'essa nel blog di Baker) riguardo a diversi giochi forgiti come "arti artificiali" per permettere a giocatori di vecchia data di "gdr tradizionali" di giocare bene come i novizi.  Il thread è troppo lungo per essere quotato qui, ma consiglio la lettura. In questo thread gli chiedono di esporre con maggiori dettagli non solo la metafora degli arti artificiali (cosa che fa direttamente nel thread) ma anche cosa intende per Brain Damage.

Che è quello che fa nel thread più letto di tutta the forge (quasi 40.000 letture, contro le circa cinquemila del thread di partenza), postato sempre nel "tequila forum": Brain damage (

Non ci provo nemmeno a riassumere questo thread lunghissimo. Dico solo che leggendolo, dopo averne sentito parlare tanto (spesso a sproposito), sono rimasto sorpreso di trovarci un testo non offensivo, ma, almeno per me, in quel momento in cui trovavo ancora molta difficoltà a lasciare pessime abitudini ancora radicate, ESALTANTE: sì, la cultura "tradizionale" dei gdr è malata, e porta a problemi poi nel giocare giochi migliori. Ma si può "guarire". E il gdr è molto, molto di più di quello che questa "cultura dominante" ci ha fatto credere.
Non è un invettiva, è un programma, un manifesto, una promessa, e una delle cose più ottimistiche ed esaltanti che abbia mai letto sui gdr.

E' anche la fonte iniziale di un brano che ho quotato un sacco di volte in questo forum, senza dirvi da dove veniva. Lo riquoto e lo riconoscerete...  :-)

To engage in a social, creative activity, three things are absolutely required. Think of music, theater, quilting, whatever you'd like. These principles also apply to competitive games and sports, but that is not to the present point.

1. You have to trust that the procedures work - look, these instruments make different noises, so we can make music; look, this ball is bouncey, so we can toss and dribble it

2. You have to want to do it, now, here, with these people - important! (a) as opposed to other activities, (b) as opposed to "with anybody who'll let me"

3. You have to try it out, to reflect meaningfully on the results, and to try again - if it's worth doing, it's worth learning to do better; failure is not disaster, improvement is a virtue

My claim is that the hobby of "story-oriented" role-playing as expressed by its most aggressive marketer of the term, and as represented and imitated by countless others, fails on all three counts. (1) Since the procedures don't work, and everyone knows it, you get the Golden Rule. (2) Since there is no "it" to do, and since social function is ignored as the necessary context, the ideal becomes to play "at all," with no social or creative metric to judge it as successful. (3) Since play is not fun, the only way to enjoy or validate the activity is to edit one's memory of play to recall it as fun, which carries the additional negative safety feature of critical repair of the techniques.

Ma non è solo quel brano. Credo che pochi thread abbiano influenzato cosi' tanto la mia visione del role-playing, e di cosa volevo che questa attività rappresentasse nella mia vita.

Ma questo perché mi sono riconosciuto in troppi punti di quello che Ron descriveva, e ne ho riconosciuto la validità. Altri invece hanno deciso solo di offendersi, e quindi quello che per me era una serie di post meravigliosa e che mi ha fatto ripensare cosa volevo dai gdr, per altri è stata solo un "offesa al buon nome dei gdr", se non una vera e propria offesa personale. Essendo internet quello che è, questi ultimi hanno superato di gran lunga i primi, il thread è diventato un flame gigantesco, e in tutta la rete sono fioccati i post oltraggiati sul fatto che "Ron Edwards ha offeso i giocatori di gdr"...  :-(

Se vi interessa, Ron rispose poi alle varie critiche in giro per la rete con questo thread: Followup to the Awful Thread of Awfulness ( Ma per me la vera risposta la cultura "tradizionale" dei gdr se l'era già data, con quella reazione isterica e di totale negazione.  E la risposta era molto semplice: non c'era più nulla da recuperare, o da salvare.

Questo non significa che le singole persone non possano uscire dal vortice disfunzionale che Edwards descrive in quel post, ma devono farlo riflettendo personalmente sulle loro scelte e sulle loro esperienze. E uscire da quel vortice significa ormai uscire anche da una "cultura del gdr" che si è autoidentificata ormai con esso.