Tales of Tadeusz

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Role-playing Gaming Update: Like Having a Real GM

The possibilities with DaveTV and the like could run into Online Role-playing, and produce a very interesting idea. Its been done before, and fairly successfully, but never by a no-capital outfit. Instead, its been done by a huge company.

That is, create a Choose Your Own Adventure style video. Each segment of the Adventure would have its own download which would then end with a screen telling you a few choices that you could download from the service provider (say DaveTV or one of its competitors), and these downloads would, of course, be the next segment for you with their own choices at the end.

As you can see, the decision tree, gets immense pretty quickly.

If you have five minute segments with three choices at the end of each segment, to get to an hour length program (which seems like a nice goal), in one branch alone you'd have thirty-three choices. Now you could cut that down by having roughly half the choices be binary.

Binary choices would work best for "Walking along the trail, and it splits"; "See threat ahead, confront or slip around"; and "Face monster: Flee or Fight".

But still, the number of video segments an hour long program would necessitate would be in the hundreds, and frankly, thats totally impracticable for me.

Perhaps, I could get the people at Freevlog.org to help out by everyone creating their own five minute videos according to my script? I could write up a script, and a general set-up for each person, and have that person do an encounter, and the end results of that encounter.

Also, Border Raids would be a great place to run up some vids. Might have to promise half of the profits go to the SCA somehow (I can see Delvingrim, the Cumberland Centre, and the Kingdom all arguing for their share.)

I could get some horse charging vids there. Perhaps some dog vids. Definitely some merchant vids. Perhaps a romantic storyline vid too. Sword attack vids...

Keep in mind that you need a setup segment, two-three choices, and then the corresponding results segments.

One problem would be not being able to buy things (unless a merchant lends them to me for credit in the story), and thus display them later in the story. After all, how do you show the hero carrying a sword when you can't afford one? One solution is to use my cheap katana.

One problem is naked steel. Its dangerous. Can't exactly be coming close to our NPC targets with it. I may end up by making the hero have a sword which is cursed, my cheap katana, that is, and it cannot be drawn. That way, he has to fight with it sheathed like Musami??

And that could be my explanation for why he doesn't buy any of the swords he finds...his sword hums in warning when he tries it.

Also, if I could get a cool story, or that Druid guy to "make me a Druid" that would be cool. I could have it necessary to enter the woods, and without that blessing, you just wander back and forth hopelessly just short of your target.

Would need release papers, and signed name cards to attach to the vids because that would be teh sole recompense of fame...could probably print out such sheets on my printer.

One side idea is to do an "Evil" PC path. It would draw attention, and yet, to be true to my ethics, it would not last long, I think. And it would be cool to have a special "Evil Game Over" where the Darkons come to drag you away...

Thats another thing that can cut down on the amount of taping to do. Make the game moderately lethal. That way, perhaps half of the major branches of the decision tree would stop at "Game Over".

I'm not sure if I have the right camera gear for this. I need something with video and audio. It needs to be portable as in I can carry it around in my hand. And it needs sufficient memory to hold say, at a minimum, twenty-five minutes of memory (that is, one five minute set-up, and three 2 minutes or less results...hmmh, maybe I could actually work a ten minute memory like the Olympus is supposed to have with this.)

But then I'd need a place to download memory, or spare mems. Perhaps, I could talk to the Baron Akim or one of his friends into letting me use their computer. Or perhaps, Andy or Ricardo have a laptop they would let me use...

Now, the Ladyfaire was quoting really low prices on video cameras, and acting like she would not mind buying one. Well, she is the more techical minded one of our Dynamic Duo, and she likes tech simply for the kewl factor. So I need to check this out.

One worry is that I would get a lot of great effort, and the camera or the cameraman(moi) would not be up to the skill needed, and all that effort would be wasted. So I would need to practise before Border Raids to be sure.

Hmm....Did I mention that I have two other projects (converting a murder mystery to party game style, and writing on a novel, and a familial emergency, plus the typical glorious family life--and I mean the 'glorious'. Its great. One does not want to short-change one's kids or spouse for a great idea. Might mean I get less sleep, tho'...

I have my Veo Advanced Connect which doesn't fit the portable. I'm not sure the Olympus D-390 fits the audio.

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