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Dauntless

Computer Aided RPG

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I wonder if anyone has been doing any work on computer aided RPG''s? I still am not impressed with the state of affairs of computer based RPG''s, but I think the potential of using the computer to handle some of the data tracking and task resolution calculation for traditional PnP based RPG''s has been untapped. In essence, I envision something similar to a MUSH or MUD. What differentiates this style of play compared to the CBRPG (Computer-Based RPG) is that it focuses on human interaction over in game rules and physics. I think a combination of human moderation via a GM, along with the computer assisted data tracking and calculation for certain events could make for a very satisfying roleplaying experience. The blend of traditional roleplay style with more sophisticated data manipulation capabilities should be a good thing. Just out of curiousity, I wonder how many of today''s CBRPG''ers have even played traditional PnPRPG''s (other than d20). It''s unfortunate in a way, since I think that failing to learn from one''s antecedents is like being an English Major without ever reading anything from the Bard. Even if you don''t like it, you can learn from it. Know thy roots....

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i''ve tried playing PnP games before (although i was into cRPGs before that for a while), and to be honest, i thought it was silly. now, i''m not putting it down as a gaming form, but it does not suit my tastes in the least bit.

that said, i do understand the value of having a human GM of sorts.

i''ve thought about it from the other direction though; i think it would be great to have an online RPG with actual human GM-type people handling the stuff that a computer can''t. take everquest for example (not because it doesn''t suck, but because it is well known): instead of some NPC telling players to find a crystal dagger and three zombie testicles as a quest, a human GM could recruit several players and lead them through something much more entertaining and spectacular. the game itself could handle most of the mechanics, but the GM could design the obstacles (whether they be enemies or traps or NPCs to be dealt with), assign any rewards, and of course fudge things if the players are about to lose pathetically and ruin the story!

just my 2 cents.

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Roleplaying is a difficult skill actually. I stopped doing it around my early 20''s, and just recently got re-interested in it. But I grew up from the ages of 9-21 playing RPG''s (and yup, I was a total geek....just a geek that also did physical activities).

Unfortunately, most RPG''s are geared for teens, and the subject matter usually corroborates this. But there are some games which not only have interesting background, premises and settings, but have systems which encourage thoughtfulness and roleplaying on the part of the player.

Getting rid of that geeky dorky feeling takes time, and takes a whole group with the same mindset. That''s why I think having computer-assisted RPG''s similar to MUD''s would be interesting. In fact, I daresay what I''m thinking of is nothing more than a MUD with a nice GUI overlay to help keep track of data or calculate certain things.

While I haven''t played Everquest, I always hear about how it''s basically a socialization place and a big virtual chat room. I''d like the CARPG to be a socialization place too...but less for the players than for the characters themselves (which is what Everquest is supposed to do).

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