Is my world 'cool'?
I wouldn't know. Doug used the word in relation to the post I wrote after my session, early Sunday morning. I've been mulling over that ever since.
People have said that I am too much a simulationist; they have intimated that my world can't possibly be 'fun' given how much work that I do. At least one blogger has 'quit' because of something he read here (since March, 2013, no posts), describing it as crap that I've wasted my life for.
Perhaps that is because I am just so darn cool.
Cool is a word that will go straight to your head. I've gotten a lot of praise here, in various forms, all of which has made me grateful - but I am a child of the 70s, I hit puberty in a time when nostalgia for leather jackets hit its peak, when it became possible to buy porn under the counter at a bookstore (even when we were 13), when crashing cars and dancing ruled. Cool was defined by strange things in those days.
There's no way in hell it applied to me. I was a nerd of the first order, back when nerds were not defined by how much fan-boy shit they collected, but by their clumsiness, their social failings, their interest in 'crap' like space, robotics and electronics . . . and in how they could not get girls. I fit helplessly into that category. Oh, so helplessly.
But those things rule now, don't they; and it turns out that girls like socially awkward boys. Seems the real problem was all those toxic masculine idiots pushing the girls around and telling them what to like. Feminism is a great thing for young nerds who don't want to fight, drink or compensate for their flatulent manhood. Turns out, where it comes to having to deal with abusive men, women and nerds are on the same team.
Obviously, that is totally not cool.
I know that I'm going strange places where Doug never intended me to go when making the point about the adventure I'm running. Sometimes, my brain just finds its own way.
JB made a comment on the same post, about playing AD&D like in the old days. To be honest, I am not sure what that means. This is how I've always played it; contriving ideas to enable the players to get what they want. In this case, they want the character back; they are deeply curious about the items and would like to know what they're about or where they go; and people are always interested in travelling about my world, to see how I'll run different places. All they need is an excuse.
How do other people play the game? I confess to being baffled. The party Saturday goes down on Wednesdays to play in a WOTC-sponsored campaign, where they fill out forms explaining what they did on a given running (which they hate), to play what they've described to me as a badly designed module. See, apparently, the people at WOTC who invented the rules were not the same people who spent their time designing the campaign, and at certain points, well, the campaign has to be stupidly adapted so that the characters are strong enough at certain points don't die. Like, as it was described to me, everyone magically jumping from 5th to 7th level.
I guess. The people who play Olie and Demifee in my world must be getting something, though they come every other week to play, bitching about the WOTC. And we know how I hate that sort of thing.
Yes, I'm baffled. Because I thought everyone was playing modules. Aren't modules all about sending people on quests? That's all I've done with this latest adventure. It's a simple quest. Return the items. Don't die. Do it within a year. Everything else is interesting window dressing.
They'll make their way to each location, getting convenient information that tells them where the next place is. I've decided I'm not going to contrive a villain to block them, but I've already got a parallel narrative that's going to follow them along, tying them up in various ways, both wasting their time and rewarding them enough to make it too tempting to ignore.
(just an aside; the link I just gave starts with me liking Anne Hathaway and thus enduring Batman for her; and I just did that again, with Interstellar; I am going to have to start hating Anne Hathaway if she won't stop working with Christopher Nolan. That is not cool).
Isn't this the way everyone plays? Move, fight, plunder, town, exposition, move, explore, fight, exposition, plunder, town, repeat.
What the hell sort of game are you people playing?
Maybe I am cool.
Nah. That's ridiculous. Just look at me.