Master Mines

We’re digging RPGs

Sucking and Paul Czege

Well I’m not keeping up with the three posts a week, but I do seem to be keeping up with the Joneses.

I’ve been thinking quite a bit about my color’s from scene idea, and it’s not working as is. It seems to be coming very close to violating the Czege principle, which badly paraphrased says, if you create your own adversity then the game sucks. So the idea of making the monsters out of the scene the players create sucks as they effectively create their own adversity.

I’m thinking of modifying it a bit, so perhaps the monster doesn’t spring from the scene, but the scene springs from the monster. Perhaps I have example monsters and the question will be whether the scene will be colored by this monster.

For a quick example, perhaps despair is a creature that lives in the bottom of wells filling nearby people with despair so they will kill themselves by leaping into the well. Thus literally and figuratively feeding despair. If the children are successful in overcoming the monster then the scene features the opposite of despair– hope. Otherwise it features despair. Of course some of the tension relies on the players identifying with the person in the scene. Haven’t figured that out yet, but I have a couple ideas I may get at later.


October 29, 2007 - Posted by | Silence Keeps Me A Victim | , ,


  1. The Czege Principle is, like all such things, a generic rule that doesn’t cover every situation. It does seem to cover most, but there are things to consider for your game. Because of how personal these elements are to the character, perhaps creating your own adversity is completely appropriate — but you can uncouple “creating adversity” and “playing adversity,” so that while you define what horrors you will react to the most, someone else is stepping into those shoes and bringing it to life for you.

    Playing you and your adversity at the same time I think always sucks, but that’s not necessarily the same as defining the adversity.

    Comment by Ryan Macklin | October 29, 2007 | Reply

  2. Regarding decoupling creating adversity from playing it: The Committee for the Exploration of Mysteries does this, and it works pretty well. You tell the Opposition player when you’re ready for a conflict and what the nature of the obstacle is, but they choose which of the Opposition dice still available on your sheet to use for it (and then play it).

    Comment by ptevis | October 30, 2007 | Reply

  3. Hey guys,

    I hear what you are saying. I appreciate the encouragement. I think the ideas are working better thinking about it from the monster creates the scene angle regardless of whether this previous way is of suck or not. I’m getting an actual picture of ways a story might be told which is perhaps a first.

    Comment by iamclyde | October 31, 2007 | Reply

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