Thursday, February 7, 2013

Cliches

I was in the desert playing a crazed tweaker yesterday in a porn movie.

Because that's pretty much always what I play in porn movies. But who cares? It's a porn movie.

Cliches:

I hate would-be-clever subversions of cliches more than I hate cliches.

It often signals the designer's dumb enough to think the game's more about the ideas than what people can do with them.

A kobold in a 10x10 room is a boring idea, but you can do all kinds of things with it.

A 10x10 room inside a kobold on the other hand is often actually just someone who thinks they're really clever and has actually just designed one of those second-tier cliche giant organic dungeons where you get attacked by antibodies and have to fight white blood cells.

Yeah, yeah, I know, you're real clever. Why does the fight with the stomach acid feel exactly like fighting grey ooze again?

One piece of jiu jitsu won't do it. You gotta be clever all the way down.

12 comments:

  1. Is a tweaker like a fluffer or it is a crystal meth thing?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. for some reason, the extra h's make this the funniest answer you could have provided

      Delete
  2. Would be "cleverness" like that usually signals to me that the author of it-- not just in gaming, but more often in novels or movies-- thinks they are "exploding the genre" which almost always translates to "is totally unfamiliar with the genre which did weirder things in pulps/the Silver Age/whatever" in practice.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Replies
    1. It was called "Panther Pussy" but:
      1. It was gonna be a blaxploitation kind of thing but the main black girl got replaced for complicated logistical reasons
      and
      2. right now Vivid's lawyers are all jumpy about anything with an animal in the title 'cause they're fighting Measure B and there's a lotta attention on them
      so the working title got changed to Devil...something

      Delete
  4. Sometimes cliches are a good thing. E.G.: Feast 1, 2 and 3. Which, IMHO, was totally the writer's D&D campaign in modern-Drag. LOL

    ReplyDelete
  5. Well phrased. I suspect this is relevant to my own failings.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I bet the rpg blogosphere could use its collective creative power to make the "dungeon inside a creature" thing interesting.

    idea: the dungeon is inside a large creature that functions almost as a siege engine. The creature is essentially an enormous husk but it has some sort of a mind inside of it, which, while incapable of exerting direct control over the creature's functions, can produce thralls out of the various lifeforms eaten by the monsters which operate the monster's body.

    so, possible premise: a faction opposed to the PCs interest sends a squad of troopers into the monster, and, carefully avoiding enslavement by the monster's brain, proceeds to eliminate the existing thralls and takes control of the husk for themselves. they are steering it straight for .

    PCs then have a variety of choices: eliminate the monster from the outside using siege weapons or something; go inside the monster and try to affect the balance of power inside the "dungeon" so that the mind can retake control of the husk's functions (potentially dangerous, since who knows what it'll do); try to seize control for themselves; try to completely eliminate the mind of the thing internally.

    also, while they're doing this, they have to prioritize what to eliminate: for example, the squadron inside the monster probably pours the most resources into guarding the head, but eliminating it would grant the biggest immediate reward. on the other hand, the party could try to eliminate one appendage at a time and weaken it to help the armies fighting from outside or slow its progress.

    et cetera, et cetera.


    although, at that point, I think the "dungeon inside a monster" trope subversion thing is totally irrelevant.

    ReplyDelete
  7. "Well phrased. I suspect this is relevant to my own failings." - LS

    thank you, LS. thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  8. With cliches I would go with sufficiently old ones, if it's old enough it becomes fresh again. Like borrowing bones of Ymir out of Norse cosmology and mix it up with some other stuff. World is destroyed and player characters are living on borrowed time, being last vestiges of it, they have to go in to some sort Overworld and kill a giant by turning it inside out to make the new world out of it. They get to choose which giant to make their world out of, some thematic cliche stuff thrown around to help make the choise.

    ReplyDelete