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Old 09-10-2019, 07:07 PM   #11
maximara
 
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Default Re: Has anyone ever tried to create campaign based on Plato's Repuplic?

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At a very practical level Utopias cannot exist for the very simple reason one person's Utopia is another's Dystopia.

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Originally Posted by whswhs View Post
I grant that as an argument for disbelieving in utopias in the real world. But I don't see that it invalidates utopia as a fictional premise. There are very practical reasons that FTL, or immortal beings, or postscarcity societies can't exist in the real world, but people still write fiction about them, and play games set in worlds that have them.

The point of my comments wasn't at all about the unworkability of fictional utopias, but about the literary difficulties in running a campaign set in a utopia, which is quite a different issue and one that even an outright fantasist must face.
You missed the point I was making and explained in the rest of my post.

Here is another example -

Night Gallery's "Hell's Bells" a hippie goes to Hell and after spending time in a waiting room is let into a room with records as far as the eye can see but they are all of music he finds "square". He then find a farmer who quickly bores him, then a couple appears with their 8,500-strong collection of their Tijuana vacation slides. Exasperated, the hippy demands that the Devil show up and explain this. The Devil appears and explains the exact same experience can be found in Heaven but for the hippy this is Hell and then leaves the hippy to his very personal Hell.

Heck, to someone of the 20th century United States Plato's Republic has some definite dystopic elements to it:

*Free speech/press? That's dead.
*All education is by the State who decides what is taught.
*Want to move up in the world? Well that DOA as you are locked into the Class assigned to you by the State.
*The State lies to its citizens to "protect" them.
*You have one job for your entire life and cannot change no matter how much you may hate that job.
*private property? That's gone.
*The State determines who your spouse will be and how many kids you are to have.

Wellcome to the "Utopia" of Plato's Republic.

In fact, Huxley's Brave New World pulls a lot of its elements from The Republic. On the surface it seems very Utopian but once you go below that surface the dystopic nature of the world becomes clearer and clearer.
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Old 09-10-2019, 07:33 PM   #12
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Default Re: Has anyone ever tried to create campaign based on Plato's Repuplic?

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At a very practical level Utopias cannot exist for the very simple reason one person's Utopia is another's Dystopia.
.
Games do a lot of things that can't exist and I've seen a TNG game, therefore I've a seen a game about characters who come from a utopia. But don't get me wrong, I think it's more interesting to subvert a utopia.

Which is why I started this thread: http://forums.sjgames.com/showthread...bel+generation
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Old 09-10-2019, 08:02 PM   #13
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Default Re: Has anyone ever tried to create campaign based on Plato's Repuplic?

[QUOTE=David Johnston2;2284399]
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Originally Posted by maximara View Post
At a very practical level Utopias cannot exist for the very simple reason one person's Utopia is another's Dystopia.

Games do a lot of things that can't exist and I've seen a TNG game, therefore I've a seen a game about characters who come from a utopia. But don't get me wrong, I think it's more interesting to subvert a utopia.

Which is why I started this thread: http://forums.sjgames.com/showthread...bel+generation
Again the point is getting missed here. The very nature of a Utopia varies depending on the social dynamics of the individual person. Heck, there is likely someone whose life is such a FUBARed mess that becoming a member of the Borg or Cyberman would be a Utopia by comparison.

Heck in the world of Star Trek there has always been an undercurrent that things are not as much of a Utopia as it first appears. In the TOS era it seems like every time someone famous in the Federation showed up they already had a mental illness or had their mental break down during the episode.

As for TNG the Prime Directive had been twisted into an abomination where the Federation was willing to let a people die even though they had the resources to save them.
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Last edited by maximara; 09-10-2019 at 08:17 PM.
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Old 09-10-2019, 08:52 PM   #14
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Default Re: Has anyone ever tried to create campaign based on Plato's Repuplic?

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Again the point is getting missed here. The very nature of a Utopia varies depending on the social dynamics of the individual person. Heck, there is likely someone whose life is such a FUBARed mess that becoming a member of the Borg or Cyberman would be a Utopia by comparison.
So what? People in the real world don't agree about religion, but you can run an RPG about religion or gods. It's a case of "let's pretend."

In the case of utopias, in particular, you can choose to play a character who is a utopian citizen, and live by and believes in the values of a particular utopia, even if those aren't your values. It's part of "roleplaying." And maybe you can't play an unlimited range of roles, but as long as some group of players can agree on playing roles that fit in a particular utopia, that utopia can be a viable campaign for that particular group.
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Old 09-10-2019, 08:54 PM   #15
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Default Re: Has anyone ever tried to create campaign based on Plato's Repuplic?

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Again the point is getting missed here. The very nature of a Utopia varies depending on the social dynamics of the individual person. .
The point is not missed. I just don't care about it. A Utopia is a society where the occupants are...somehow...maximally happy and fulfilled regardless of whether an outside observer regards it as disturbing or downright horrible. So yeah a utopia can also be a dystopia particularly if it's a utopia where the details are explored rather than handwaved. But Roddenberry did a heck of a lot of handwaving.

Last edited by David Johnston2; 09-10-2019 at 09:03 PM.
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Old 09-11-2019, 01:02 AM   #16
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Default Re: Has anyone ever tried to create campaign based on Plato's Repuplic?

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Yes, but it was just a shadow of what I expected.
Holds up a shaven-footed hobbit, "BEHOLD! A man!"

Last edited by evileeyore; 09-11-2019 at 01:33 PM. Reason: Somehow didn't include Turhan's joke as a quote.
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Old 09-11-2019, 05:38 AM   #17
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Default Re: Has anyone ever tried to create campaign based on Plato's Repuplic?

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The point is not missed. I just don't care about it. A Utopia is a society where the occupants are...somehow...maximally happy and fulfilled regardless of whether an outside observer regards it as disturbing or downright horrible. So yeah a utopia can also be a dystopia particularly if it's a utopia where the details are explored rather than handwaved. But Roddenberry did a heck of a lot of handwaving.
Isn't the correct term for a society of maximum fulfilment a eudaimonia? I was taught that "Utopia" simply means "nowhere" and can refer to any hypothetical society regardless of quality - it need be neither bad nor good, just hypothetical. If we don't like Eudaimonia the Eutopia would be effective Greek as well IIRC.
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Old 09-11-2019, 06:43 AM   #18
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Default Re: Has anyone ever tried to create campaign based on Plato's Repuplic?

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Isn't the correct term for a society of maximum fulfilment a eudaimonia? I was taught that "Utopia" simply means "nowhere" and can refer to any hypothetical society regardless of quality - it need be neither bad nor good, just hypothetical. If we don't like Eudaimonia the Eutopia would be effective Greek as well IIRC.
As with Egyptology (in another thread) that is a definition few use anymore. Generally Utopia means a non existent "perfect" society which is supported by the revelation in More's addendum of the book that the actual name of the place is Eutopia (the good-place): "Wherfore not Utopie, but rather rightely my name is Eutopie, a place of felicitie"
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Old 09-11-2019, 08:06 AM   #19
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Default Re: Has anyone ever tried to create campaign based on Plato's Repuplic?

Surprising amounts of answers (that are not ignorants trolling, luckily not on this thread), Thanks.

I'll be checking the "Just City", also have to note that early parts of "politeia" considering justice and how systems are flawed was intresting like concept of "Noble lie" etc.

I'm still thinking of writing more on this matter.

BTW: never thought that Star Trek's UFP would have any basis on philosophy, save Vulcans. :D

--Mp
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Old 09-11-2019, 08:18 AM   #20
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Default Re: Has anyone ever tried to create campaign based on Plato's Repuplic?

Arguably, the People's Republic of China is structured the same as a platonic republic. The ruling Communist establishnent are the philisopher class (albeit more fallible), the armed forces are the soldier class, and the burgeoning ebtrepreneurs are the merchant class.
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