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Thinking of starting a play-by-post game


Cosmo
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I've always wanted to run some kind of "play by post" game through the forum, but until now we didn't really have a good foundation to make it work well. Now that we're on this new software, I think there's some potential to do something really fun and interesting.

There are some other things on the site that take priority before I can put time into planning this, but I wanted to start a conversation and see what kind of people might be curious or willing to check it out. I'm open to ideas about what to do and how to do it; don't have my heart set on any one thing.

If you're not familiar with the Play by Post format, here's what Wikipedia says:

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A play-by-post role-playing game is an online text-based role-playing game in which players interact with each other and a predefined environment via text. It is a subset of the online role-playing community which caters to both gamers and creative writers. This activity is closely related to both interactive fiction and collaborative writing. Compared to other roleplaying game formats, this type tends to have the loosest rulesets.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Play-by-post_role-playing_game

If you're interested in participating in something like this (or even if you aren't but have ideas) feel free to chime in.

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It'd all be online, strictly through the forum. No need to download anything. Creative writing with a twist.

If you've ever played a traditional pen-and-paper role playing game (Dungeons and Dragons or Rifts) then it's basically that. It's harder to do it well when you're at the mercy of everyone else's response times, but executed properly I think it could be a lot of fun.

One I've always wanted to try is Continuum:

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Unlike other time travel games (and fiction), which usually depict time travelers as either lone explorers or as an all-powerful "time police", C°ntinuum assumes that time travelers (spanners) would eventually evolve their own society, with its own laws, rules, slang, groups, art movements, and the like. Time travel would color such a civilization in the same way that any other major technology (such as television or the automobile) has changed the human race. C°ntinuum states that the core question of the game is "If you could learn to span time at will . . . what form of civilization would you be entering?"

The Continuum, the main spanner civilization, extends through the whole of human history (and beyond, although the post-Human society of the enigmatic "Inheritors" borders on both sides). A primary focus of this civilization is to increase the knowledge and acceptance of time travel by the human race, so that when time travel is discovered and announced (approx. 2222 AD), humans will be ready for it, and moving into the next step in their evolution (becoming Inheritors). Another focus of the Continuum is the complete documentation of history.

The Continuum civilization also has "time criminals", called "Narcissists", so called because they seek to remake history in their own image. (In the late 1990s the publisher announced they would be releasing a version of the C°ntinuum book with the background material retold from the Narcissist standpoint. As of 2015, it has not been released, but a pre-release edition circulated in 1999 and 2000.) The Continuum has members trained to "repair" damage caused to the course of history by the Narcissists.

The game's solution to the issue of time travel paradox is the concept of frag. The universe does not tolerate paradox caused by time travelers, nor are parallel worlds created by paradox. Instead the universe begins to "erase" those for whom the paradox exists. (The frag concept appears to be based partly on the ideas in Alfred Bester's "The Men Who Murdered Mohammed".) Too much trying to change history (too much frag) and time travelers become something not quite real anymore. Frag can also be generated on purpose, a tactic in "time combat". The Continuum society is partially built upon the repair of paradoxes that affect its members.

To explain frag by example, using the Grandfather paradox, a Narcissist might decide to travel back in time and kill his grandfather. If he "succeeded", he would return to his own time to find his grandfather alive. (The Continuum would step in to "repair" the murder.) The Narcissist would then begin to fade out of existence due to the conflict between his own memories and "actual" history. He has been "fragged".

The game also has immersion techniques to bring players "into the game". Most of the book claims to be, and is written as, an anachronistic artifact of spanner culture, aimed at increasing public awareness of time travel to further the Continuum's ends, and to prepare for the public announcement of time-travel. For example, players are required to quote the Maxims of the Continuum before advancing to the next level, and track their time travel, in exactly the manner their characters in the game do. Artwork in the books is also credited to spanners and often depicts the particular aspects of spanner culture.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Continuum_(role-playing_game)

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On 7/13/2020 at 11:30 PM, Cosmo1598825723 said:

It'd all be online, strictly through the forum. No need to download anything. Creative writing with a twist.

If you've ever played a traditional pen-and-paper role playing game (Dungeons and Dragons or Rifts) then it's basically that. It's harder to do it well when you're at the mercy of everyone else's response times, but executed properly I think it could be a lot of fun.

One I've always wanted to try is Continuum:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Continuum_(role-playing_game)

THAT looks like a fascinating game! I'd play!
-Oz

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2 hours ago, PaulaJedi said:

I've never actually played RPG's so I would be a newbie!

I haven't played a game like this in nearly 20 years... The last time I knew anyone who was interested was when I was in the army, stationed in Baumholder, Germany.

This guy, Anthony, was in my company and we became friends. He introduced me to a game called Rifts:

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The Rifts world is Earth, but hundreds of years into the future. Ley lines, lines of magic energy, criss-cross the earth forming supernatural geographic areas such as the Bermuda Triangle. Points where Ley Lines intersect, called a nexus, are places of powerful magic, such as the Pyramids of Giza and Stonehenge. If a Ley Line nexus energy surges or is purposely activated, the very fabric of space and time can be torn, creating a rift, or a hole in space-time leading to another place, time, or a new/parallel dimension. Ley Lines in most lower capacity "realities" have less Potential Psychic Energy or PPE to allow them to be visible, but in the magic or PPE saturated worlds like Rifts Earth, they become visible based on PPE intensity. Some are visible during the day as evident by a slight blue shift of the surrounding environment. Otherwise at night or from space the massive bands of blue-white energy can be as large as half a mile wide in some places, and stretching for many miles.

The Magic energy making up Ley lines as mentioned is Potential Psychic Energy or PPE. Found in various places, objects, and animals, one of the greatest sources of PPE is in young and prepubescent children. An adult's level of PPE can vary based on other factors. PPE also allows Psionics which uses energy known as Inner Strength Points or ISP. Psionics (more commonly called psychic phenomenon) can also vary from individuals, ranging from none at all to Master level abilities. Psychic abilities can manifest in virtually any way imaginable. Some psychics develop differently, such as psi-stalkers; human mutants that feed on psychic energy.

Honestly some of the most fun I've ever had, even if it was only the two of us goofing around and making up stories. 

I'd be a newbie at it again too, but it's really just about telling stories and thinking things through. Would be interesting to try it here somehow... Maybe build a character sheet system for the site so people can keep track. I'm sure there's a way to do it well. 

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1 hour ago, Cosmo1598825723 said:

I haven't played a game like this in nearly 20 years... The last time I knew anyone who was interested was when I was in the army, stationed in Baumholder, Germany.

This guy, Anthony, was in my company and we became friends. He introduced me to a game called Rifts:

Honestly some of the most fun I've ever had, even if it was only the two of us goofing around and making up stories. 

I'd be a newbie at it again too, but it's really just about telling stories and thinking things through. Would be interesting to try it here somehow... Maybe build a character sheet system for the site so people can keep track. I'm sure there's a way to do it well. 

Fortunately since the game is so old the original handbook can be found online as a PDF. There's also some website graveyards that have character sheets & newsletters going back as far as the 80's, I attached one here cause I thought it was interesting. 

I managed to download a copy of the handbook, but it's ~128MB and the board has a 48.83MB limit. What would be the best way to share it?

-Oz

Continuum_1.pdf

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