Chaos Reborn Lore Discussion 101

For Wizard Kings (and higher) to discuss the Realm Editor and the creation of realms.
Fri Dec 11, 2015 7:04 pm

  • In the Realm Creation Guide, Julian presents a requirement that Realm Creators should not make "unnatural or overly contrived terrain formation" such as a "too many straight edges, too much symmetry, not organic or natural looking". See the guide linked here: viewtopic.php?f=12&t=3312.

    This has precipitated some questions about what is the lore basis for Wizard Kings to find or create realms. (E.g., here.) If Wizard Kings create realms (if they do), then why cannot Wizard Kings create unnatural seeming realms with smiley faced arranged landmasses or landmasses shaped as narrow spirals? Is this because the realms are composed from the fragments of Old Earth and other celestrial detritus and Wizard Kings make due with the land mass materials available to them? Or... what exactly is involved? Is there any lore that connects the realm creation by players with the ruling of a realm by their characters? What is the lore which limits and informs the Realm Creation Guide?
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    NoWorries
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Fri Dec 11, 2015 7:41 pm

  • I actually like the idea of highly symmetrical, inorganic-looking law realms from a lore point of view, but maybe it would just look "bad" or "too game-like" in to actually play.
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    RafiRomero
     
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Sat Dec 12, 2015 4:18 am

  • NoWorries wrote:In the Realm Creation Guide, Julian presents a requirement that Realm Creators should not make "unnatural or overly contrived terrain formation" such as a "too many straight edges, too much symmetry, not organic or natural looking". See the guide linked here: viewtopic.php?f=12&t=3312.

    This has precipitated some questions about what is the lore basis for Wizard Kings to find or create realms. (E.g., here.) If Wizard Kings create realms (if they do), then why cannot Wizard Kings create unnatural seeming realms with smiley faced arranged landmasses or landmasses shaped as narrow spirals? Is this because the realms are composed from the fragments of Old Earth and other celestrial detritus and Wizard Kings make due with the land mass materials available to them? Or... what exactly is involved? Is there any lore that connects the realm creation by players with the ruling of a realm by their characters? What is the lore which limits and informs the Realm Creation Guide?


    The only things that should inform the Realm Creation Guide is 'will a realm created according to that guide produce a realm that designers will want to design and that players will have fun playing?'. Lore is something which is nice to have in the background of the game, and for those that want it its a nice way for them to flesh out the game, but it shouldn't be a constraint to what realm designers and imposition or barrier to what players in general can actually choose to do within the game imho.
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    SpiteAndMalice
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Mon Dec 14, 2015 8:11 pm

  • SpiteAndMalice wrote:
    The only things that should inform the Realm Creation Guide is 'will a realm created according to that guide produce a realm that designers will want to design and that players will have fun playing?'. Lore is something which is nice to have in the background of the game, and for those that want it its a nice way for them to flesh out the game, but it shouldn't be a constraint to what realm designers and imposition or barrier to what players in general can actually choose to do within the game imho.


    This point isn't really what this thread was intended for, but I guess it comes under 'lore discussion'.

    Yes SpiteandMalice, I read what you said on this on the other thread. You mentioned how you 'appreciate' the effort put into the lore, I'm not sure that's the right word for the position you're adopting, at least it doesn't come across that way to me. I'm also a little confused by your other threads related to creatures as this doesn't suggest you don't want lore, but that you want your own lore perhaps?

    Maybe I'm getting the wrong impression.

    Still, the idea of optional lore is interesting and brings up analogies related to design and play behaviour. Is lore like the music soundtrack? Something you can turn off and put on your own? Or is it like graphics - something you have to have to play the game?

    Fundamentally including lore or not in decisions related to realm approval is a choice that goes to the heart of the game's identity and player experience. Lego is a wonderful toy because you can build what's in the instructions or you can add the parts to your pile and build something entirely different.

    Games like Tetris and Pong don't require lore, but do have rigid interaction rules. Chaos Reborn has a little of both - a rigid play system (in multiplayer combat) and a story generator (in realm design). If lore is optional, to the latter, the overall identity is diluted in favour of the player's own ideas. The rejection becomes as much part of the identity of the game as the acceptance and ultimately, when the later social hierarchies are determined, that rejection becomes part of the identity of the players who
    champion it. Of course, this isn't a total binary, characters can reject and then retcon their way back, but then we end up with 'f'luff' - explanatory lore that exists only to rationalise and adds little to the game experience.

    Mindcraft succeeds well in allowing players free access to its tools and shaping a story driven experience (which was its original design premise). However, Minecraft's identity has been determined by its free play and the Chaos Reborn realm designer doesn't quite have the same building block granularity.

    Ultimately, the lore should strive to be a broad church, allowing and inspiring player imaginations to work within its constructed frames. It should be accessible and open to interpretation. Chaos Reborn needs a lore base like this and the current ideas for it are an attempt to encourage this. I'm always happy to discuss lore matters further here or by other means to assist in finding ways for player ideas to be accommodated.

    That said, I'm a fan of player freedom, particularly as the play style for the came can be casual, so the depth of story may not be part of someone's reason to spend a little time playing Chaos Reborn over lunch.

    However, making lore optional in realms would mean those not informed by lore ideas would not be part of the wizard's experience (in the developing story contrivance). Realms that buy into the lore amplify the story message of the game and are an opportunity (later) to develop this further, adding to each player experience. Non lore realms would still add, but would not be part of the transmedia experience as we build fiction stories, audio drama and more adventures alongside the game.

    Brenda Laurel's book Computers as Theatre is particularly informative on this in chapter 4.

    So on balance, I'm not in favour of optional lore for Chaos Reborn.
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    AllenStroud
     
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Mon Dec 14, 2015 9:39 pm

  • AllenStroud wrote:
    SpiteAndMalice wrote:
    The only things that should inform the Realm Creation Guide is 'will a realm created according to that guide produce a realm that designers will want to design and that players will have fun playing?'. Lore is something which is nice to have in the background of the game, and for those that want it its a nice way for them to flesh out the game, but it shouldn't be a constraint to what realm designers and imposition or barrier to what players in general can actually choose to do within the game imho.


    This point isn't really what this thread was intended for, but I guess it comes under 'lore discussion'.

    Yes SpiteandMalice, I read what you said on this on the other thread. You mentioned how you 'appreciate' the effort put into the lore, I'm not sure that's the right word for the position you're adopting, at least it doesn't come across that way to me. I'm also a little confused by your other threads related to creatures as this doesn't suggest you don't want lore, but that you want your own lore perhaps?

    Maybe I'm getting the wrong impression.


    I think to an extent you are, I do appreciate the lore that you're creating (and that's appreciate without quotation marks around it). And as I think I've said before, I'll be happy to purchase and read a copy of your book (especially if it’s reviewing well). I just personally don't feel the need for that lore within the game itself.

    Chaos is a game that I've played since the mid 80s, I've played it quite happily without lore for 3 decades. I see Chaos as a game like Tetris and Pong (and many others from that era), a game which is enjoyable in its own right, it had no 'lore' - it was simply 8 wizards fighting. I therefore personally don't need lore to be within the game. I am happy for it to be there for those that want it, and I'd ultimately like to have a situation where everyone enjoys this game to the utmost. To that end I don’t want to stop lore from being in the game. What I'm not so happy for is for that lore to also be there for those that don't want it. My objection in particular is to restricting player made maps because of something not everyone is buying into.

    AllenStroud wrote:Fundamentally including lore or not in decisions related to realm approval is a choice that goes to the heart of the game's identity and player experience. Lego is a wonderful toy because you can build what's in the instructions or you can add the parts to your pile and build something entirely different.


    I think using Lego makes for a good analogy, but maybe where our difference in viewpoints lies is that you're seeing PvP as Lego without instruction, and realms as Lego with Instruction. Whereas I'm seeing realms as not needing instructions either.
    Lego isn't about just making a ship or a house, it's about the story that you make within that ship or house once you've built it. And I'm seeing Lore within the game as being an equivalent to someone saying 'Right we've got Lego the Movie now, so you're not allowed to simply play with Lego any more and make up your own stories, you now have to follow these instructions in this booklet here, and then once that ship or house of our design is built you can only tell stories with it that form a part of our franchise.'

    In short Lego is fun to play with, it's fun to play with because it's one of those most creative toys ever made, but the bricks came first and on the back of their success all the movies and games have followed, it's not the other way around.

    Thank you for the reading recommendation btw.  This is also worth a read http://kidsnbricks.com/why-is-lego-so-popular/

    Going back to Chaos for a moment, like Lego I have a strong attachment to it, and I like Lego I want to see it be successful. But also like Lego I don’t need any form of lore to be available in order to enjoy the core product. If others do, then it’s nice that that lore is there for them, but it shouldn't be forced. To me forcing Lore into the game is saying to players that they can’t have their own creativity and stories and play any more, it’s saying that they can’t build their own models, only models that meet with approval, and I don’t think that that’s good for the health of any game where you’re asking players to create content.

    I'm genuinely happy for you if your book is successful, but I don’t have a vested interest in it. I appreciate that a book is being made, and for that matter a radio show. But their existence doesn't affect my player experience or how I view the identity of the game, my identity of the game is long established.

    My only interest is in seeing the game do well, and I feel that allowing user creativity leads to that end where restricting it doesn't.

    Anyway, I don't want to derail your thread, and Julian has confirmed that Lore will not be essential after the next update so I guess I’ll go back to writing my stories and leave you to yours.

    I'm happy to discuss this further with you if you wanted to, but maybe we should move the discussion to another thread, PM, or you're even welcome to contact me via Steam.
    Last edited by SpiteAndMalice on Tue Dec 15, 2015 12:40 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Mon Dec 14, 2015 11:33 pm

Tue Dec 15, 2015 4:22 pm

  • I'd argue perhaps that the presence of lore in the game is suffering because most of the benefits of lore (I'm thinking mainly social ranks and extreme flexibility in realm editing) aren't in place yet.

    So at the moment, lore only really comes into play to restrict what players can do in the realm editor. Once we have Gods and Guilds, lore will become a framework for real creativity - in the same way that (say) DnD give people a framework to create on top of.
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Tue Dec 22, 2015 10:00 pm

  • Apologies, been unwell and under a lot of work stress over the last couple of weeks. Finally starting to get back into all things Chaos Reborn again.

    Thanks for the reply Spite, I'll set up another thread tomorrow as I think its a good point of discussion.
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Thu Sep 15, 2016 9:18 am

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