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Sunday, August 28, 2005

Mike: Well, sure, the numbers constitute part of the theme. We need to know who the best warrior is, how tough a dragon is, and whether you can die from a lucky arrow shot. More to the point, the game is driven off of sending the right people to do the job. All good stuff. Combine that with the art work, and the narrative building blocks - they are all there: characters, plot, events, drama - and we should have a theme rich experience.

So Tom, who should be standing by his guns, thinks the theme holds up, while others are looking at it from the other side and pointing out failings. I think this is down to transparency. Do the systems allow us to experience the situation without the penny dropping? We are all looking at the same numbers, and doing the simple math. It sounds like either the frequency of the calculations is breaking the spell, or there just isn't enough there in the first place to conjure the illusion.

Another aspect may be the ludic quality. Is there really anything here that challenges us? That forces us to make a game decision? I don't think 'agonising' is ever called for, but it is nice to have a problem to solve, especially in a mission based game.