Who gets sick of grinding for flying in one MMO, so immediately starts grinding for flying in another? This loser!
The reason that letting the audience choose its own story keeps failing when the entertainment industry tries it is that it’s a bad idea. It’s the author’s job to write the story. They can then choose a way to convey that story that gives the reader freedom in how they experience it. But if the story itself is merely a loose collection of different options, each in a different genre and with a completely different tone, then what they’ve created isn’t a coherent work, but a self-indulgent mess.
Abigail Nussbaum on story.
This is from a really, really good comparative look between Black Mirror‘s “Bandersnatch” and the “walking simulator” video game genre which, among other things, really nails why I can’t fucking stand Black Mirror‘s smug, lukewarm, late-to-the-fucking-party takes on things. Also Firewatch was a fantastic game, so was Gone Home, and while I didn’t love Night in the Woods I can see why people do.
Also related thought: the tension in tabletop RPGs between “the GM designs the game and the players experience it” versus “the players make-up the game and the GM facilitates” it. I’ve mentioned before I am… not particularly a fan of the latter approach and, again, I think this article well-articulates why.
Reading up on Monster of the Week before our game and…
My big Issue with PbtA games is they tend to be both, like… too prescriptive and too vague, all at the same time? Like stats and abilities are all super-simplified, which is fine, but then… moves are super prescriptive at the same time? Like, try and play for e.g. Monsterhearts as an investigative game—which, spoiler alert, we did—and see what I mean. Because of the way Moves are structured in that game, there’s basically no way to convey in-character information independently of player deduction, unless you resort to, like, some kind of precognition/supernatural intervention mechanic, which often ends up feels really GM-ex-machina-y.
Warhammer 40k is so very close to how fascists see the world. They are beset on all sides by degeneracy threatening to choke out their way of life, and an ever-present foreign (re: xenos) menace seeking to take all they have from them. In their minds, authoritarianism is the only means of survival in this grim dark future. The portrayal of genocidal imperialists as heroes, particularly in this day and age is irresponsible, and personally overshadows much of the fun that I could be having with this franchise.
It’s getting a lot harder to love 40k, especially when the franchise continues to lovingly portray fascists as good men, demonizes queer people, and repeats xenophobic talking points as if they were actually worth considering. I can’t blame Trump supporters for photoshopping their beloved leader’s head onto that of the Emperor. That’s the world they want to create.
DorianDawes on the problems with 40k.
As someone who came to 40k quite recently, I was surprised by how much I enjoyed it. But… yeah. This article, basically.