Thededine Von Crankengeshteitmeyer (thededine) wrote in perfectrpg,
Thededine Von Crankengeshteitmeyer

Genre, Mood, Plausibility, and Power

sailor_charon and voxen have touched on, but not discussed, a rather intrinsic issue of game design that I'd like to draw out for more detail. Does the perfect RPG emphasize 'realism' or is it built on the basis that 'realism sucks'? Either one has profound effects on gameplay, on the game system, and if you extrapolate enough, the game setting.

Are fights short and lethal, making life in general 'short, harsh, and brutal', or are fights long drawn-out affairs with badguys falling of cliffs and always coming back for more, making life a dramatic and never-ending open question? Which would would you prefer to play in for your freetime?

Are the PCs powerless or powerful? Are the PCs average or exceptional? Those are two very different questions. Do you want to play a character who is powerless like everybody else in the world, or a character who is powerful unlike the unwashed masses, or a character who is powerless in a world of powerful people, or a character who is powerful in a world of powerful people?

Does 'power' necessitate breaking the laws of real-world physics?

Does realism necessitate lethality? Does realism necessitate a sharp ability curve that only allows badasses to accomplish badass feats? Can a realistic system have magic, or does the inclusion of magic negate any realism?

Obviously, this comes down to a matter of preference, but I don't think that discussing our preferences would be a bad idea, either.
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