continuing to write chapter 4.1

again, this is the bit of work i did today, incorporating some of what i posted yesterday.  i seem to get the beginning of the section done first, and get increasingly sketchy as i go down the paragraphs, which is why the end of today’s work will end up in tomorrow’s post.  today, i’m basically just organizing things and rewording research, waiting until i can hear them or see them going over this stuff.  i’ve got snatches i heard (imagined) while looking over the material, and slowly i’m getting actions, but nothing more than tucking stray locks back behind the ears.  i’m not going to fret over it, because it’s just a process, and i might come up with the scene all of a sudden an hour after i’ve gone to bed, and be back here writing it up until the wee  hours.


In their game, they went thru each level creating and naming and organizing as they went, choosing places for settlements, and arranging conditions, and interfering whenever it was called for. Then they moved on to the next level, with different parameters, and built and organized and made sure everybody was happy, and moved on to the next level. Thinking about it in front of Fairy, the main thing that was different in each level was the advance in technology. Starting with stone huts and fish traps, they eventually learned how to make pottery and glass, to build wooden structures and simple machines, like the wheel – and when they discovered iron, they developed steel and steam engines, and then electricity, and then nuclear fusion. The other difference was the way society was organized, from tribes to nations, from serfs to citizens, from superstition to science.

okay i see where you’re going with this. let’s take the neolithic period, your stone knives and bearskins motif. i’m guessing animism for a belief system. how about if the skill is staying alive. making food grow. and the next period, viking, everybody loves the viking esthetic. should they be pagan or early xian? gotta have the druids. learn how to control waters, weather. then you’ve got your medieval period, they’re all catholic with saints and the inquisition and guilds and plagues and bad hygiene. invent simple machines and commerce. enlightenment, that’d be humanist, and you’d have all sorts of social innovations. harness nature, invent science. but they’re in the steppes and swamps, that’d be more like the golden horde, right? we can put that part back into medieval, if you like. it’s so anomalous. then those victorian cities, they’re revolutionary? that’s a stretch, but okay, it looks good visually, and the costumes are cool. organize society. they’re fundamentalist? i guess revolutionaries can be fundamentalists…no they can’t, they’re opposite. fundamentalists are reactionaries. hmm, i see a kluge coming on. and the next one is totalitarian, that doesn’t sound very nice. reach all limits and have to rethink. and the antichrist, huh? okay. and what happens in the inaccessible mountains? oh yeah, nothing. epic battles are totally uninteresting. baby steps in new quantum reality.(later snake and josh mock this attitude)

Anomia was responsible for the graphic bible, which she kept mostly in her head, and that was handy, because it’s a pain in the ass to work up style sheets for every little thing in every little scene in every corner of every level. She concentrated on drawing up detailed maps of the rings, and spent lots of time laying out the environments. She spent most time on the backgrounds, photoshopping landscape images and textures. She didn’t have time to storyboard the intro or cut scenes, but said she was coming right along on them when the others asked. And nobody was thinking about all the other things that have to be created for a videogame, like the box art, the press releases, the demo and screenshots. They assumed these things would happen as a natural byproduct of their work on other areas. detailed project plan, schedule, milestones, contingency plans, budget, priorities – these are familiar to most videogame development teams, but not this one.

Josh planned to have lots of easter eggs, all very well marked. – that means the alien vampire zombies are back in the game, with the hidden tunnels and the sidequests thru most levels. boy insists on pirates, draws level diagrams (areas w/obstacles and skills), names rings. boy sketches out cut scenes, quests. “A list of the animations, 3D models, textures and other graphics which need to be produced, in as much detail as possible. If you can list the exact “idle animations” which will be attached to your main character at various points in the game, do it. If not, at least decide how many there will be.” the boy creates the physical overlay. he researches climate, vegetation, geology; he determines the seasons, the rainfall, the water and wind currents. he decides where to start the desert and where to limit the glaciers, how much geologic rebound to plan for. passes all this to girl for art direction, who had already been proceeding with her own plan. they argue…

in our game there was no cost to create things. they just flowed when we needed them. if we have that in this game, we’ll end up with accumulations of infinite wealth and power. we’ve got to limit it. you can take it away from them once they’ve got it, but nobody likes taxes. if you just issue a cap, people will get frustrated and quit. so everything’s got to cost. creation doesn’t just pours out where you want it, but it costs energy points. item converter. true, Everyone owned the things they had, their houses and businesses, and they had jobs, and responsibilities. they were all invested in managing their resources, which is good for retention. sense of ownership. housing crisis ploy by banks entrap borrowers cycle debt? and they all involve energy points. so you have it coming in, and being paid back out, like water flowing in thru a faucet and out thru a drain. what about the effects of all this on the environment? if each player has a life and a family and a community and infrastructure, then you get pollution and the resources run out and it gets overcrowded and there’s crime and wars are declared, and the whole planet destroys itself. so resources aren’t scarce, because that leads to anything for a profit, but everything costs something.

ingame: “Unlike most role-playing game systems, Nobilis does not use random elements in determining success in characters’ actions. Instead, Nobilis uses a resource management system; players may spend Miracle Points to succeed at certain actions, but otherwise they rarely fail at what they set out to do. Instead of the action centering on whether or not the characters succeed, the emphasis is instead on the consequences of those actions. Since combat between Nobilis uses up Miracle Points very quickly and a Nobilis can easily defeat even great numbers of humans, social roleplaying is encouraged over combat. Though the characters may seem to have limitless power, in reality they must take into consideration both the outcome of every act and what other Powers or Imperators they may offend in the process. In the first two editions, each character has 4 attributes: Aspect, which governs their ability to perform superhuman physical and mental acts; Domain, which covers their power over their estate; Realm, which determines how much power they have in their Chancel; and Spirit, which describes how much magical power the Nobilis has. Spirit creates the Auctoritas, a shield that protects them from the Miracles of other Powers. A character’s Spirit also determines how many Anchors they may have. Each attribute has a number of Miracle Points associated with it. The character creation system also makes Nobilis notable by giving players an unusual amount of control over the setting. In addition to creating their own characters – a process which already allows for considerable customization – the players create their Imperator and Chancel. Players receive a number of points to invest in their Chancel equal to the total amount they spent on their characters’ Realm; they may use these to buy special attributes for their Chancel such as special technology or magical inhabitants. They do not receive any points for their Imperator, so they must take a corresponding drawback for every special attribute they wish their Imperator to have. Each Nobilis also has an Affiliation, which is a moral code they follow in order to regain Miracle Points, as well as character flaws called Limits and Restrictions. Much like their Affiliation, these allow the character to regain Miracle Points when they become an inconvenience. By the future time period of Norton, magic is referred to as the Fifth Fundamental Force, with its own primary particle, the Magicon (similar to a graviton). A few other series have used the technology/magic combined motif, notably Apprentice Adept, another series by Piers Anthony, and Four Lords of the Diamond by Jack Chalker.”

necessary space – thousands of square miles in each ring, millions of players in each of a dozen cities of hinterlands, densities ranging from 30-50/mi for ring 1 to 50,000/mi for ring 6. in lowlands cities can have 12,000 – 200,000 per city.

and what are the players doing in all these different environments, what are the objectives? the disciplines you want to teach? well, first you need to master your mind, and your body, and then you develop your consciousness, and after that you learn to control your subtle body. once you’ve built up your muscles, you learn how to move and fly, you develop your intuition and clairvoyance, and you learn how to manifest things, how to create. we learned a mnemonic – cnngspp. that’s not a mnemonic, it’s a collection of consonants. what’s it mean? create, name, nurture, guide, share, preserve, pass on. those are the ultimate goals. and the lessons? owkrpato. bitch please. all one way, all knowable, all relative, all possible, all alive, all together, all one.

fairy tracks assets in world diagram (locations, objects), suggests tarot card-based characters, pulls up examples. fairy designs npcs, textures, sounds, draws up a flowchart of possible actions for entire game. wants fantasy creature npcs. who suggests aliens? fairy photoshops rider deck character sketches, lists preliminary npc functions. they discuss list of animations. fairy works on flowchart of possible actions for entire game. todo list. digitized audio clips, universally unique identifier or UUID. fairy A list of the sound effects and music tracks required in the game.

thinks of herself as fairy godmother. thinks she owns world diagram, flowchart, already sees how it’s supposed to go and trying to make it happen by controlling the lists. since snake isn’t around, she has no opposition; the girl and boy appreciate what she’s doing, she feels she’s the one holding it all together. wonders if she can copyright it for its own good. in the months it takes to design the game, fairy sleeps thru a bunch of boyfirends.

expand This left tasks/scripts/npcs/avatar design, which Anomia originally made a stab at. But Fairy complained about everything from her drawing skills to her fashion sense, so they give avatar shape and appearance, avatar skin textures, to Fairy, and she gave it to Radhu, whose avatars were more Bollywood, leaving Fairy to explain it away without taking credit for it (yet).fairy has child account with radhu, she passes him things and chats with him, but he doesn’t have access to the others. she keeps world diagram to herself. what does radhu do?


About jeanne

artist, grandma, alien

Posted on October 17, 2012, in Dailies, fiction and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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