A Thought

Dafela

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And 3rd person view RPGs - there is Skyrim/TES games and PB games with atleast factions, and nothing else like that. JRPGs can have games with a lot of dialogue, like Legend of Zelda, but would it be popular if it would have western graphics? Just meeting new characters, use wits to solve problems or dialogue checks. That is why RPG players tried to defend Greedfall so much, but the next game of Spiders is combat only game :(.
There is a lot of games with fishing or just hanging around in openworld, but nothing combined with mini stories, creating your own background, with very rare combat, like if you would live there.
Skyrim was closest to that - you could just walk around, now you can do fishing, a lot of mods enhanced the noncombat side of Skyrim - you could be a bard, you could develop more of thums, you could be just a hunter etc.
EDIT:
3 posts at once, that is almost spam, sorry about that.
 
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Alrik Fassbauer

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Skyrim looks far too dark for my taste. The graphics also play a huge role in what I define as "dark", but graphics are usually only a vehicle to transport a certain story or/and a certain theme.

It's a bit like ... I just cannot imagine any Heavy Metal band breaking out from that cliché that Heavy Metal has to have that certain look.

I like playing DDO that much because right now it seems to have the right mixture for me.
There's an overly much of combat, though, but that is sometimes secondary - often with newer adventures [adventure modules] within that setting.

In DDO there are also dark stories, but it isn't so that the whole game has dark graphics because of that / to transport that. (The Ravenloft expansion is the only exception from this rule.)
 

Dafela

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So you just want to attack certain kind of games, ok. I was kinda hoping that there is something more to it, but I guess it is not - usually when someone is vague, that is what that does mean. Have fun.
 

JDR13

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I don't see how he's attacking anything. He's clearly saying it's about taste. He just doesn't like those kinds of games.
 

Dafela

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I don't see how he's attacking anything. He's clearly saying it's about taste. He just doesn't like those kinds of games.

I'm sorry you missed the point of my post, but whatever. Also you didn't read the whole discussion.
 

Alrik Fassbauer

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It's simply so that I just don't like anything dark and grim.

On the other hand, I feel quite alone in my personal view of doing so. That's why I tend to call myself a "grumpy gamer" these days. (I think one of the Monkey Island makers calls himself so as well ... I've forgotten his name, though.)

I play games for escapism. The REality out there is already grim, I do not want it to be mirrorred in games.

I have the suspicion sometimes, though, that those who play dark / grim games play them to escape their comfort zone at home or so.
Playing war games to get some excitement which just isn't there in Real Life.
This element is hinted to in SWTOR:KOTFE : People want to play Anarchists, because everything is , so to say, "too comfy" at home.

It's almost as if players want to experience the direct opposite of what they have in Real Life.
Me included.
 

Alrik Fassbauer

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Someine I know from work and who is also a role playing person (although rather pen & paper), kind of supported my view that we are currently in an age in which "dark 6 gritty" is the domnant form of RPGs - because he likes it.
He is reasonable, though, to accept that this is also a matter of taste, and that he - as he says it - can fully understand why there are people whose taste is noit met with that [ like me, for example ].

… Which leads me to an obversation i recently made :

RPGs which contain stories I would like to play are almost exclusively J-RPGs now.
Games which have the medieval look which I'd like to play are not J-RPGs.
Or something like that.

What I mean with that is this :

"Western" RPGs always have these days a "dark & gritty" (or, as I'm used to say, "metallized" look and story,
meanwhile J-RPGs seem to have stories that I would like to play.

I … don't know if I can makje this clear ( English *still* isn't my first language ! ;) ) ,
#but this is like a cross : On the one hand thre is the rather medieval look, but on the other hand there are these stories … but I currently can not have not both at the same time.
I either get the medieval look with stories which I don't like,
or I get stories with a look I don't like (J-RPGs have a distinct look which simply is not my taste, it's like I don't like the taste of some kind of meal.)

This "cross" tells me that there are at this moment several directions going on in which the RPG genre is evolving, depending on where it is made.

Well, I think I'd better stop writing here, because it's late, I'm getting tired, and therefore my mind becomes blurry …
 

Alrik Fassbauer

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The Chicken & Egg problem : How to get stories published when nobody knows me.

Usually, when I write to or ask book publishers about my short stories (mainly Fantasy), I get the response : "We don't do that" or "Readers don't want short fantasy stories" or "we don't know you. We only publish known authors" , often together with the friendly, but not helpful "hint" that I should try publishing with a small publisher or/and in an anthology of a small publisher.

But then, when I pubblish with a small publisher, I still won't get seen by the big publishers, wil I ? I mean, the people responsible for getting new authors - and they most likely will not want that if they have already big authors - just will not have neither time nor book space to buy random books from some small to tiny book publisher THEY don't even know !

So, it's a chicken & egg proble,.

I won't be seen because I publish with a small publisher, but people demand that I publish with a small publisher in order to be seen or "noticed" at all.

That doesn't look logical to me.

I'm extremely frustrated, but financically and everything I'm just not able to do self-publishing at all. I have enough work, I'm exhausted after work, need my weekend for recuperation, and - that's it. How am I supposed to do self-publishing after all of that, too ?

In my opinion, the books markets are a more or less closed circle. Contained only by big names, then by Indies, and no-one knows Indies, because no bigger book store has Indies on their book shelves. You come across them by sheer chance, by (fantasy) conventions, or not.

There just is not a thing like steam for Indie publishers.

I have amassed quite a number of short stories within my writing in the last 20 years. It's about time that I get them out, into the world.

But - there's such a myriad of authors out there world wide , and it's a buyer's market (the buyers being the publishers). They can do what they want, they can select the best from the best.

Some worldwide known novels have almost not been published by this.
It's always the same story.

And it is not easier nowadays, now that there are Creative Writing courses, which produce lots of good, bad, and strong ego authors.

Nowadays, publishers just don't publish everything, because it reads good. They have their own subsidiaries, which are concentrating on distinct genres.

Other publishers are just brands of big conglomerates these days. Like Universal and Sony for music bands.

I'm so much frustrated because all I feel is invisible walls.
 

Couchpotato

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@Alrik Fassbauer look into self publishing your ebook on Amazon or another site.

I've read thousands of books I would never have read before it authors never went that route. Publishers are not the only option nowadays they just make it easier.
 

Redglyph

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There just is not a thing like steam for Indie publishers.

You could try Indiegogo, it's a good way to avoid publishers though it may be a challenge to get attention there too until you have some credentials.

People I know who have started from scratch made themselves known by self-publishing free "samples", mini-albums on Spotify for the music, short novels for books, one even made a play.

Once you have a solution to self-publish, you probably need ways to make it known as widely as possible. Look on goodreads, for example there's a give-away system, and a best debut novel award events.
 

Couchpotato

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I would recommend Patreon as well as you can charge as little or how high as you want for people to read your stories. It works as I dabbled in fan-fiction for cash.:biggrin:

Though I don't know the rules or regulations in Germany though.
 

wolfgrimdark

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Aubrielle published her book and was self-published and she had to go through a lot to do that.

It takes a lot of work to publish a book and while some folks may be able to hit it big most have to put in the effort to get noticed.

I know a couple authors, now somewhat big time, who started out self-publishing. They tell some good stories about how much work and effort they put in to get published, how many times they got rejected but kept persisting, and eventually did it.

Of course you also have to have talent and be a good writer to be successful. It is more than just hard work and time, you also need have something people want to read that is well written.

That being said I have read books that fell short of what I would call well written :p But taste is subjective and one person's trash is another persons treasure.
 

Couchpotato

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Yeah no one ever said it was easy just that you don't need a publisher nowadays. The big publishers are learning this lesson as well, but wont change anytime soon.
 

Alrik Fassbauer

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Yes, I do know that self-publishing is probably thew route I *have* to go, I'm just not sure whetherI'll have the energy for that.

As I wrote, when I come home from work, I'm exhausted, and I have exactly 4 hours free time because I have to get into sleep early if I don't wont to be tired too much in the next morning.
And the weekend is just needed to get myself up again.

I already got some friebdly advice from a few people on conventions, I'm just not sure that I'll have that energy I 'd need.

If this was a German-language forum, I'd probably had put a few stories in here already. It's just so that the translation process needs a lot of work because I'm not a professional.

Plus the fear that my stories might get stolen.

This week and this weekend especially I'm just depressive, seeing no land, so to say. The weather draws all energy off me, and I just can't get myself into looking positively forward these days.

Well, tomorrow I need to get to work again. at least I have positively good co-workers there who always cheer me up. ;)
 

Redglyph

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Plus the fear that my stories might get stolen.

In Europe, your artistic work is protected by copyright (until 70 years after you death). Thankfully it's much easier and almost free in comparison to patents.

It's usually a good idea to join a copyright notice when you send or post your work, and it's strongly advised to register your copyright to get a proof in case of contestation, though I don't know how likely this may happen.

There are several organisms providing a registration. For the general copyright on artistic work, you can check the Copyright Index which is recognized in many countries. For other types of work (inventions), I used i-Depot to prove any anteriority if necessary (this is for Benelux, there must be similar organizations elsewhere).

Your protection is valid in many other countries outside of the EU thanks to an international convention (Berne). See more details here for Germany.

If you're pursuing your idea, check this in more details and ask the advice of someone more knowledgeable (I'm more into patents than copyright).
 

Alrik Fassbauer

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I often wonder why Vampire : The Masquerade is so much hyped. I see that people say that it was a great game.

But … Why does nobody do a game like "Angel : The Masquerade" ? Is it bad and unwanted to play good guys with a similar theme ?
You know, when looking at things, it is my habit to turn things around at 180 degrees and then watch the outcome.

I suspect that a game like that (playing angels) would fit too much the following tropes (taken from my favourite web site, "TV TRopes") :

Good is boring : https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/GoodIsBoring
Being good sucks : https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/BeingGoodSucks
Good is dumb : https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/GoodIsDumb
No good deed gets unpunished : https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/NoGoodDeedGoesUnpunished (where the opposite of that would be ...)
Good is ot nice : https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/GoodIsNotNice ( "Affably Evil is when a villain is polite, friendly and genuinely kind, even while plotting evil.")

Evil is cool : https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/EvilIsCool
Evil feels good : https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/EvilFeelsGood
Villains act, Heroes react : https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/VillainsActHeroesReact

There are in my opinion far too many tropes supporting polaying evil, and supporting evil characters as plot-drivers, than there is real incentive to play good characters, or making them strong.

My biggest complaint is that "Villains act, Heroes react" kind of tropes, which degradates [spelling ?] the good side to merely being "answerers" and being inferior in every aspect. Like with these tropes from above, nobody wants to implement strong good characters. They're dumb, boring, react, and get easily slaughters, like Pathfinder : Wrath Of The Righteous shows in its introduction. The overwhelming bad is so much better equipped that the heroes are considered qweak from the start. They have to build up their reputation - which is very uncool - whereas the villain already has his or her immense reputattion from the start - which is very adorable in the eyes of people to whom might and power matter.

In the end, most games are baically like : "I play the good side just to relish how much more powerful the bad side is. I would really really like to prefer playing the bad side, because it is so much powerful, and I want to feel powerful, but the game doesn't allow me that. It only allows me to play a skimpy, boring, dumb good guy."

Vampire . The Masquerade is a bit different in that, as far as I know - I have never played it.
But still, it follows the trope of having a deep story with deep moral choices etc. , whereas developers strongly believe that a similar game is just not possible for ggood characters. It just isn't or otherwise there would have been one already.

It is bvery striking that developers - no matter whether C-RPG or pen & papoer - do not see any sense in a setting that features the opposite of a horror game like Vampire : The Masquerade. It would be simply too boring, and I'm very sure that everyone would agree to me.

I find it striking that people abhor good NPCs so much. I do not remember a single good NPC who is driving any kind of plot. It is always the villain who does it.

Recently I supported a campain book for TDE (The Dark Eye). It is about a certain region of Aventuria.

What I found with it, is a very detailed and massive construction of LOTS of evil characters, spies, secret societies, networks, background NPCS, who are ALL evil. The good ones are merely noted within a very few pages. No details, no networks, no spies, no secret societies.

And that, although one would expect a secret society for good ones, too.

Let's take the Vampire : The Masquerade premise : In Wikipedia, I read this :

In Vampire: The Masquerade, the Masquerade refers to an organized conspiracy primarily orchestrated by the Camarilla to convince the general public that vampires do not exist. The Camarilla believes the Masquerade is the cornerstone survival strategy for Kindred and fear that without it the kine would rise up and exterminate all the undead.[31]: 14, 22, 33 

Why does there not exist a game within a group of angels orchestrates a conspiracy to convince the general public that angels do not exist ? One could easily develop a fantasy setting in which this is required.
One could even easily deveoped a horror game in which angels must mask themselves, because evil rules the world. It would be a great setting, because of the above tropes "evil is cool", "villains act, heroes react" etc. etc. . Everybody would love to play it.

Another quote from Wikipedia :

Vampires in the World of Darkness have a rich, complex, and diverse secret society with a range of ideologies, goals, and backgrounds. Sects largely divide along ideological disputes surrounding the distribution of power among vampires, the role of vampires in the human world, and the ancient myths that allegedly explain the origins and purpose of vampires.

Because of the trope "good is dumb", nobody has ever developed any "rich, complex and diverse society" for angels. You just cannot imagine it, because you adhere the tropes "good is boring" and "good is dumb" too much. Nobody has ever made even the slightest attempt to break out from this.

The tropes "good is dumb" and "good is boring" (and similar ones) are just too strong.
They overwhelm everything, because of - storytelling.

Everyone wants to listen to stories of a weak, dumb, boring hero to overthrow the mighties villain there is. Therefore, good has to be dumb, boring, weak.

It is also part of most storytelling that there is some kind of "rise to power" (advertising for Bioware's Dragon Age !) from a weakling to a stronger one. It therefore also requires the hero being dumb, boring and weak. Not being the member of a secret society network of good ones, please. No good side factions, please. No diversity among good side groups, please. That level of detail would overwhelm people, because they are not used to it.

The older I become, the more I'm deeply fed up with that.

It feels to me like "been there, having seen that", and its like I have seen it all, and that gaming history repeats itself. There is nothing new under the sun.

It deeply feels like ... as if gaming history repeats itself. It deeply feels to me as if there was no incentive to play any video games anymore, because they all follow the same old formulas and tropes.

Which is why I more and more tend towards exploration games these days. Of which there exist only a frighteningly low number for the PC ("Impossible ! Because the PC is THE action platform !").

I guess that I'll havce to develop what I want all by myself. *sigh*
 
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bkrueger

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I often wonder why Vampire : The Masquerade is so much hyped. I see that people say that it was a great game.

But ... Why does nobody do a game like "Angel : The Masquerade" ? Is it bad and unwanted to play good guys with a similar theme ?

You know, when looking at things, it is my habit to turn things around at 180 degrees and then watch the outcome.
In VTM you do not need to play a bad person. It is your choice like in other RPGs. You simply happen to be a Vampire, but for example you can play without sucking blood (at least in Bloodlines). So in my eyes your criticism is beside the point in this case.

Moreover on most RPGs you play good guys as a default and playing bad guys is often not designed as a main focus.

By the way your usual criticism against "dark and gritty" would also not fit for VTM:B, since it is very colourful because it plays mostly at night but in a city with many neon lights.

So if you never tried VTM:B because of an aversion against playing evil or an aversion against dark and gritty you should at least try it to learn something new…
 
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Alrik Fassbauer

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So if you never tried VTM:B because of an aversion against playing evil or an aversion against dark and gritty you should at least try it to learn something new…

Please read the rest of my rant, I developed my ideas further.

It revolves mainly around the tropes "good is dumb", "good is boring", "villains act, heroes react".
 

bkrueger

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Please read the rest of my rant, I developed my ideas further.

It revolves mainly around the tropes "good is dumb", "good is boring", "villains act, heroes react".
When I posted my answer, your rant consisted exactly of the text I quoted. I can't answer to things you haven't written yet.

And regardless of your additional text, VTM:B is not a good example for your claims. E.g. "Good is boring" is not a a maxim in that game.
 
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