Principle of narrative Truth in DW!?

Principle of narrative Truth in DW!?

Principle of narrative Truth in DW!?

So I am usimg this principle in my Current DW Game. Its simple: What is told by one of the players becomes real as it is told (except someone vetoes it)

The aim is to establish a little bit more player empowerment, and to take off a creative workload from the GM.

It goes like this, for example:

GM: the dark tower emerges sky high into the steel grey sky. What do you do?

P: there is a window above the closed portal, i try to climb up.

GM: Not so fast. As you approach the tower you see, there is a window and a guard is standing there. Hes about to turn around, what do you do?

And so on.

Frankly, my players didnt ,ake much use of it, but i might push them in the future. Right now i sometimes just ask them, what happens, like,: ‘ok, you rush towoards the top of the stair, and now you see what those goblins are about to do. What is it?’

What do you think about this? Do you like it and might use it in your Games? And if: why or why not?

12 thoughts on “Principle of narrative Truth in DW!?”

  1. yes! This! I have the rule that “whatever you say, it becomes real. No takebacks. Consider your words carefully.”

    It keeps my players on track, and forces them to carefully consider what they say. 

    GM: “Who do you know in this city?”

    Player: “OH! I know the baker’s son. he and I wrestled in the haystacks, if you know what I mean.”

    GM: “Oh yeah? was he a good guy? do you miss him?”

    Player: “no, he was an ass, I always hated that guy.”

    GM: “Really? well, if he’s the only person you know, that doesn’t bode well for this adventure….”

    Player: “oh yeah…maybe I’ll keep my head down…”

  2. Not every player likes this kind of play.  There are benifits to it – many people are more interested and invested in a world they help create.  I also prefer the end result ot a story that is written more as a collaboration.

    As for how to get people to take part, well, ask them questions.  Start with questions about things their characters would know more of, and if they start to become the experts on some aspect of the world, keep going to them for it.

    Also, I like Spout Lore way better if I let the players create the fiction when they use it (actually, I thought this was how it worked when I first ran the game, until I read more carefully).

  3. I second Larry Spiel ‘s comment. Some players don’t like this. It has taken some time for me to understand why but I think I figured it out. 

    Some players look at GM agency the way that we look at player agency. They don’t want to take it away from us, or “mess up the story” 

    In response to this, I’ve found a happy medium: Honor what the players do share and ask them extensively about their character and his/her motives, feelings, impressions, and so forth.

    While a player might get annoyed when asked “Why is the sky red?” most of them will jump at the chance to answer the question “What do you think of when you look at the blood red sky?”

    Good topic!

  4. I agree with Matt Smith, my players love to explore and discover a world of (mostly) my creation. They absolutely do not want to dictate elements of the world but I’ve found that they do not mind telling me about “personal” elements. 

    I’ve geared the nature of the questions I ask to being very specific and personal; “Why does the inquisitor hate you?”, “Are your parents still alive?”. Anything to do with the setting however they prefer to discover through me.

  5. Tim Franzke is right.

    If a pc has been there before he may know there is a window. If not the GM decides about the window. To be able to create reality as you go along may break suspense of disbelief.

  6. I think it really boils down to the question if players like this or not. I know this from Fate games, where you have a lot of metagaming and author stance . Now, DW has very tightly defined roles in terms of what gm and players job is, and any amount of player empowerment would blur the line.

    I don’t think this is necessarily a bad thing, just a matter of taste.

    My conclusion is that I won’t push it, but leave the possibility open.

  7. I’m always trying to nudge my players to have more agency in the world.  I try to ask them leading questions, and build on their answers.  I also listen to a lot of the table chatter, and try to pick things out of it.  Off-hand comments meant to be jokes usually end up being key story elements.  Whenever they ask for things in the world, I give it to them.  (“Is there a window in the tower?”  “If you want there to be, sure!”)

    My players were hesitant; some of them were in it to hear a story and have some tactical combat, so I didn’t push them as much.  But I think the collaborative tone really helps them get more attached and involved with the story.

  8. I think an important part of this player agency is the GM purposefully re-incorporating elements the players flag: their class, their chosen moves, their bonds, their equipment, NPCs they interact with, monsters they hunt, antagonists that seek their demise, treasure or magic they lust after.

    Bring these elements back into the narrative over and over. If the players show interest in something, hook into it.

    That way, when a player answers a provocative question, or authors setting / situation elements via moves or just in the conversation of play…. Don’t make it just fluff or trivial colour. Make it stick in the fiction.

  9. When I first approached DW I was very put off with how much the player could introduce. I realize this strongly reinforced the idea of no prep but was determined to try and run a standard adventure. Unfortunately my players love to explore any little detail I give them, even the ones that don’t seem relevant. This had led to some great gaming but I find it harder and harder to keep them on any predetermined path.

    I have a little under 10 sessions under my belt and I am already heavily subscribing to the little prep method. It makes it easier to start up a game with zero prep but I have found I simply need to prep in different ways for DW. Instead of having an adventure outline, I try to fill my prep with monsters that are ready to go. I use adventure hooks galore that are rather small in focus (think side quests in any video game).

    The more I run DW the more I think hex-crawl like prep is perfect for this style of play. A simple one or two sentence description can set off an entire series of events that nobody planned for. I go out of my way to drop flavor and extra details in my descriptions of environments. When it comes to DW the devil is in the details. The more you have, the better off you’ll be.

    I find myself thinking more about different ways to get my players involved and comfortable with introducing fiction than I do about adventure planning or encounters. It is a completely different beast than most games, but if you can get past that and embrace it for what it is, there is a completely new style of gaming that is just as much rewarding as anything you’ve ever played before.

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