Experimental Scientific Playtests

DeReel's picture

My game alias is De Reel. I have found lots of interesting story game drafts abandoned all over the internet, but can't get my group of Grognards to try them. My intent is to gather a number of people interested in experimenting with short forms in order to gather play testing know-how, knowledge on improbable games, mechanics, or player strategies.

I am thinking things like Lexicon RPG, Oulipo games, one page RPGs published on Google docs, tongue in cheek essays in the guise of rules, drafts and orphan mechanics in which you see some promise (As the worm turns, A thin crescent moon hangs sickly pale, Gifted, PowerLunch a business-card game, etc.) and well established systems you want to try under peculiar, maybe extreme, conditions.

The format should be short, with a fast weekly one-shot session lasting 60 minutes or two (depending on the time zones we cover). This way we can drop in and out according to IRL and our interest in the experiment of the week, and still contribute to the long term project.
We need to know what sort of fun we enjoy : Finding games ? Testing limits ? Testing strategies ? Discussing the results ? Something else ?

Some of you already know what they want to bring to this picnic. Please, let us know who you are and what is your interest in the project.

"Always be testing !" 2097

The following coordination tools are open to ongoing modification.

- The Lab log ESP lab log is your wish list, and also this, a log.

(Once you update it, you can select all below line 1 and sort by column E to see what will be played first)

- The session will take place weekly at the most consensual time in the week.

(State your weekly availability)
(Actual date / month doesn't matter)
(Times are UTC)

The thread is for manifesting interest and creating agreements on our procedures.

DeReel's picture

A twin project on the Gauntlet : gathering TTRPG knowledge in one wiki. The thing is : the tool over there is really lacking. I'd rather make my own wiki from scratch or go to Wikia.

Davey's picture

I haven’t really clicked w online gaming, but Ive had limited other options in last two Years. This sounds great. And I know you are bright and easy to interact w from our communications on story-games forums. So yea, I’m interested. I have really slowed down (to a crawl) in my thinking and working on new games, but somehow it’s arising in me again... I’ve got lots of unfinished work in the pipeline so I know I can bring stuff to the table. I’m also interested in helping others with their ideas. We used to have a really cool playtest group here. I’d love to find something like that again.

Paul T.'s picture

I don't know how much availability/time I'll have for this kind of thing, but it's right up my alley!

DeReel's picture

Thanks for the kind words @Davey.
In my opinion, the key to this thing is to be prepared, make play quick and to the point. Operating in short bursts is a good way to make it happen despite our heavy time constraints. If we need voice and cam, there probably should be a session just for trials and troubleshooting, for instance. Written games, like Cobralingus, can take more time, because they already are open to various participation frequencies.
I have no specific game or mechanic in mind at the moment, maybe you care to add your propositions in the great table of prospecting, ordering preferences, conducting experiments, abstracting patterns of gamology. Or maybe you simply name the game and the intent and we start planning a session.

DeReel's picture

Good. I have more time now. I edited the original post to add the procedures rather than multiplying threads.
As of now, it looks like we will be beginning next week with a game of "As the worm turns" on Wednesday 11:00 UTC. Of course, this will change with your actions.

DeReel's picture

Goes without saying but I'd rather say it : I assert a lot of things regarding procedures, but everyone can propose and discuss them. I adopt a "by default" stance to get things going, not to dictate my way.

For instance, I'd set "Yes, if necessary" votes to a value of 0,1. That makes it a mere tie breaker, whereas a value of 0,5 would make it a "foot in the door" (an effective manipulation technique).

Paul T.'s picture

I am interested to see some other folks play my game! Thanks for thinking of it.

Did it happen? Is it possible to see or read the results?