In studying role playing games, players have noticed several ways in which they differ. These have become the basis of many discussions about the nature of gaming and games.
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One outcome of these discussions is the theory that gamers should be matched to the games they play and the people with whom they play them.
This quiz attempts to identify a player's preferences in relation to two distinct models of game concepts:
Gamist, Narrativist, and Simulationist Goals (G/N/S)
Drama, Fortune, and Karma Mechanics (D/K/S)
The Gamist/Narrativist/Simulationist (G/N/S) paradigm is about gaming goals.
Gamists focus on the competitive aspects of a game. The adventure is a challenge constructed of obstacles to overcome in an effort to obtain a prize or reach a goal. Character development involves gaining advantages to assist in this effort. The object is to win the game.
Narrativists are developing a story. Winning and losing is irrelevant; what matters is that something memorable emerges, a tale worth telling again.
Simulationists are experiencing a world, a time and a place. The game is a set of rules that define the world and the people and events within it, such that as you play you discover what might have happened in such a world. It doesn't matter whether we like what happened; it is the discovery itself that has value.
The Drama/Fortune/Karma (D/F/K) paradigm is about event resolution, the mechanics which make the game run.
Karma mechanics are a straightforward comparison of character values: the character with the higher score wins a competition involving that score; in-game obstacles are overcome by those whose scores beat a difficulty rating for the obstacle.
Fortune mechanics use dice or cards or other randomizers to add a bit of risk to the outcome--there is usually a chance of failure even for the best, and the underdog might defeat a superior opponent on a lucky chance.
Drama mechanics place outcomes solely in the hands of people, usually the referee but often the players individually or collectively. Outcomes are based primarily on the decisions of people, not directly on either a die roll or a score comparison.
It should be understood that most games blend more than one goal and more than one mechanic, and most players do so as well. The outcome should indicate the degree to which you as an individual favor one aspect of play or another, but most players will find they are indifferent in several areas, indicating that they probably accept and appreciate those aspects, although they favor others.
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