Sunday, September 4, 2011

Why the delay?

So where did I go?

Here's the deal. When I first started posting everything was in the very abstract. Abstract conversations are neat and easy because everyone can twist the abstract to find values aligning with their own ideas. Their contributions then spur other ideas and it is genuinely helpful. Pretty much most of what I like about my current ideas were spurred from contributions from commenters on this blog.

Then I got specific and things changed.

It isn't that comments weren't helpful, it is that what I liked about my ideas was no longer abstract, but they were presented in broad strokes. A general idea ("Combat should be faster!") needs context to be presented as a rule. People then respond to that context, which is legit, but the core idea is lost in the discussion.

What I discovered is that I can iterate my ideas down easier, whittling away the ancillary context, without feedback. Critical feedback makes me want to defend the core idea when the criticism was focused on the ancillary context. This isn't really productive because I should just be figuring out ways to get rid of the ancillary stuff. Here's a visual.

The light blue is all the context and the dark blue is the core idea. Spending a while with the idea lets you cut away the context and just retain the good idea, adding it to other good ideas until something special actually exists. Of course, because language is imprecise, it is hard to communicate just that core idea. So we got a pickle.

I've been working on a lot and the game keeps taking new (and interesting) directions. I hope to share it and maybe even see people play it. Since it is my first ever real attempt at creating a game, I'm just letting it take me wherever it goes. Evidently, it took me somewhere fairly far from core D&D. When I began, I wanted to just create a set of house rules that could overlay over 4e... we're now pretty darn far away from that. So far, in fact, that I'm not even sure where I am.

Hopefully that is somewhere cool and fun.