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Old 02-17-2017, 05:35 PM   #11
tshiggins
 
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Default Re: Collaborative Worldbuilding Threads

I participate in the ones that interest me as a way to throw out some fun ideas. So, creative writing is part of it, but creative brainstorming is the fun thing, for me. I participate(d) actively in the "Build a Steampunk World" thread, because the interaction was/is so good, and the genre is one of my favorites.

Some of those threads, though, just don't inspire me. I have little interest in horror, superhero or silly settings, and I'm hit or miss on fantasy and space opera. Generally, I start to lose interest if people, in my opinion, deviate too much from the basic premise.

For instance, if someone says they want a post-apocalyptic game, and people start to talk magic, I bail. That alters the premise, so much, that I seldom find the thread any fun.

I also prefer a playable setting. When people start introducing grotesquely high-powered stuff, I bail also (this is part of why I have so little interest in supers settings).

So, yeah. I like to participate in the creation of useful campaign settings of the sort I prefer to play and run. Part of it is that I'm running my own Infinite Cabal setting, right now, so I'm really interested in threads that present ideas I can use for that game.
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Old 02-17-2017, 09:56 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by ericthered View Post
I think different mechanisms are also ideal for different parts of world-building-- question game is good for a quick sketch, but struggles with details.
I think we can get very detailed with the question game, it's just that the details are piecemeal. However, the threads generally lean toward more narrative style answers and are fairly phobic toward hard numbers and game stats.
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Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
BTW, what about realtime brainstorm mechanisms? They seem to be under-represented (for obvious reasons) here, I know, but I mean what about their viability as an extra tool, experiences related to them etc.?
What's a realtime brainstorm mechanism?
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Old 02-18-2017, 05:41 AM   #13
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Default Re: Collaborative Worldbuilding Threads

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What's a realtime brainstorm mechanism?
Some way of talking in real-time and some kind of whiteboard to scribble on. For one of RogerBW's games, we did this fairly successfully by using Google Hangouts, which is how we do remote play, and Google Docs, which has a word processor that allows several people to edit the same document simultaneously.
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Old 02-18-2017, 09:56 AM   #14
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Default Re: Collaborative Worldbuilding Threads

Do you think there'd be any advantage over using a wiki?

And does it answer the question of how to get people writing or is it more for recording what comes up?

Also, I think we should keep the forums as the focus of the activity somehow, to keep this community involved. It's a slightly different requirement to setting up a gaming group.
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Old 02-18-2017, 02:57 PM   #15
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Default Re: Collaborative Worldbuilding Threads

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And does it answer the question of how to get people writing or is it more for recording what comes up?
Do you mean using a wiki, using a google doc, or something else when you say: it?

I suspect that making a wiki more central to the project is likely to increase its longevity and get more folks writing.

Google docs manage simultaneous edits better than wiki's, but they don't preserve history in the same way. The doc is probably better for individual brainstorming sessions than the completed project.
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Old 02-18-2017, 09:36 PM   #16
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Do you mean using a wiki, using a google doc, or something else when you say: it?
That'd be the Google Hangouts/Docs that johndallman was talking about. Does using that medium get people more involved than using the forum (and mirroring on a wiki, which is my preferred method)?
Quote:
I suspect that making a wiki more central to the project is likely to increase its longevity and get more folks writing.

Google docs manage simultaneous edits better than wiki's, but they don't preserve history in the same way. The doc is probably better for individual brainstorming sessions than the completed project.
I've used Google Docs, and you can review the history version-by-version or even keystroke-by-keystroke if you need, but a wiki also keeps version/difference history.

I prefer a wiki because of its page and subpage structure, so you can group topics and so on. A doc is a long, linear document, which you can add internal links and structure to, but it still becomes more cumbersome. The wiki I've been using isn't perfect, but I haven't been bothered enough to go shopping for an alternative.
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Last edited by Daigoro; 02-18-2017 at 09:57 PM.
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Old 02-20-2017, 05:36 AM   #17
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Default Re: Collaborative Worldbuilding Threads

OK, based on the posts so far my take away is that:

First of all that I shouldn't expect too much out of the project, question games and submissions threads will give me a lot good ideas but I probably won't get more than a very rough outline of a coherent setting.

Secondly I would be best served by using a mixture of approaches, probably guided + voting for building up some ground rules with a question game to add detail.

Third if I want to maximise how long it runs for and how much stuff I get then I would ideally run it on this board to take advantage of the slower turnover (probably not practical if I want to use specific GURPS stuff). Even if I don't I should keep things close to the premise and try to keep some sort of clear lasting record of what has been decided.

Have I missed anything that contradicts or should be added to this list?
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Old 02-20-2017, 07:03 AM   #18
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OK, based on the posts so far my take away is that:

First of all that I shouldn't expect too much out of the project, question games and submissions threads will give me a lot good ideas but I probably won't get more than a very rough outline of a coherent setting.
Sure, but that's expected. Other people won't do all your work for you, but also you know best what you want in a setting.

I find good inspiration from the threads- for example, my unstated, ulterior motive for the space trader thread was to find an FTL method that was different and interesting, which allowed tramp freighters to be a thing, but which didn't dominate the setting flavour, so I was quite happy with the hyperplasma idea we ended up with. Collaboratively as well, we were able to work through how it would work and the consequences it would have on the setting. I could've tried to do that myself, but it would've taken longer and I would've missed a few angles. Also, just posting "what's a good FTL? Thanks!" thread might've had a lower buy-in from other posters.

Quote:
Secondly I would be best served by using a mixture of approaches, probably guided + voting for building up some ground rules with a question game to add detail.
I'm leaning towards the question game, but with some groundrules- "I'm looking for an X setting that allows Y but isn't too Z". You could inject votes and things into it as you go to settle disputes, if needed.

Quote:
Third if I want to maximise how long it runs for and how much stuff I get then I would ideally run it on this board to take advantage of the slower turnover (probably not practical if I want to use specific GURPS stuff). Even if I don't I should keep things close to the premise and try to keep some sort of clear lasting record of what has been decided.
Strictly speaking, most of the threads don't have a lot of GURPS crunch in them, so they probably should live here. I justify it by thinking that the implicit system and mechanics assumptions are all GURPS, and any mechanics talk that comes up would use GURPS. I think the extra traffic there is important though, and outweighs the chance of falling off the first few pages.
Quote:
Have I missed anything that contradicts or should be added to this list?
Depends- what are you aiming to do?
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Old 02-20-2017, 07:27 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by Daigoro View Post
Depends- what are you aiming to do?
In this case I am trying to gather ideas for a draft setting that is based upon ideas that I find fascinating but don't think I can do justice to on my own. Ironically while they are often present in my settings I find it fairly hard to bring many 'transhuman' features into the foreground of a decent setting. So my fundamental goal is to find a worked example that does this without invoking my personal bugbears of AI and uploading.

In a perfect world I would be looking to get a complete draft that I (or anybody else) could refine and put my own stamp on through a couple of trial sessions.

Realistically I hope that by throwing ideas out and then seeing what comes back and then doing it again that I will get a decent outline and a few good ideas I can build on to create something better than I could do on my own with the initial premise.

I have made a start here with the intention of trying to build up a framework to use with a question game. Now I need to work out how I go forward with it (assuming it generates enough interest).

Last edited by Frost; 02-20-2017 at 07:34 AM.
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Old 02-28-2017, 03:42 AM   #20
vicky_molokh
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Default Re: Collaborative Worldbuilding Threads

Observation:
As the thread is moving onward, I'm seeing my voting pattern/direction as more and more different from the more popular one. As my preferences thus turn out to be further and further from the setting that is being made, I'm more and more tempted to say "Been fun so far, but I'm too different from you to keep going. Good luck and have fun" and bow out.

Which made me think of two things:
  1. That maybe at this point voting becomes more self-reinforcing as other people who bow out are likely to be the ones who find their tastes to be different from the majority.
  2. That maybe where the thread goes is heavily based on its elevator pitch (since it influences what sorts of voters it tends to attract in the first place).
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