Saturday, June 18, 2011

Gaming Plans by around August, Hopefully

This month has my sched full. Since May, when we entered the company and tried to do its turn around we were facing many opponents and challenges. One of the many lessons that is at my current attention is the comprarison of incompetence vs mutiny. 

No other time can I say that someone working from the inside against your own group is a much greater barrier than incompetence. Few games ever create such a classic real world problem as the enemy from within. 

One particular problem with an internal threat is how easy it is to blow it out of proportion. Paranoia can be difficult to control or keep in check with an enemy from the inside. Especially when you do not have the tools, data, or opportunity to sit down and work out the logical puzzle of "who had the most to gain, the opportunity, or the most compelling motivation". That also there is that Darwin's habit of always putting quite clearly the evidence or facts that can best defeat his own arguments. 

The lesson of the enemy within is that in the Real world it is much safer and better to focus on the goal, so that as to move quickly and make it more difficult to be sabotage. Of course you will have to filter information, double check sources, and watch your back. But actively trying to match or beat the Ew/in eats up TOO much resources while tying up your current objective. Like a shark you keep swimming or you might die.

Time is one of the greatest barriers to such a puzzle. Economies of time, regarding eating, sleeping, work-life-balance, catharsis, and overwhelming amount of duties. 

Realistically, the GM SHOULD give a laundry list of tasks that is more than x3 to x4 times greater than the PC can handle. (Maybe 50% more than the PCs handle if he manages his time expertly (Discipline and self control-15+). 

These tasks have various priorities, from low, moderate, and high. Typically we all do all the High priority stuff, and do the moderate to low half-assed, then some of the low can be resolved with a 3d vs 9 (roll below). Roll every week. On a roll below 9 its stays and can give some minor complications to current situation, when these do solving the situation can also solve the minor problem. On a roll of 6 or less, it escalates to a moderate problem. All problems escalate every week when left untended. 

Familial Duties and Relationships in general should impose a -5 worth of "hurried" task modifier for many situations. It basically means the PCs try to achieve the desired results at half amount of time. 

Failing to satisfy Family or Relationships degrades the quality of life. If we were to role-play ordinary people then Family, Hobbies, Passions, Loved ones, etc. matter. Diminishing the security or satisfaction regarding these brings down character morale. 

No one intentionally destroys their priorities and what they care about the most. Consequences have a domino affect Human Bounded Rationality can barely see in advanced. See Normal Accident Theory, and try applying that to Life.  

Low Morale is like being burned out, it takes MUCH more effort to do anything or get anything done. Treat it like fatigue, where it takes twice as much work to do anything. Its visible to anyone who takes the time to notice. Low Morale can be from arguments with the loved ones, some bitter personal disappointment, or a consequence of several small things building up to be something more difficult. 

It is a penalty the character is unlikely to notice or objectively feel, but something the Player will note when certain things don't go the character's way. 

Gamers with a coping mechanism, seeing the Game or being aware of the game aspect have the disadvantage of being considered delusional. Its not that it doesn't exist,  but it is an intuitive sense with very little facts to go on and mostly follows Economic and Behavioral principles which can be considered "soft" empirically speaking. 

Anyway, I'm learning a lot. I had an interesting learning about Profit Margins and the pattern they take. How opportunity cost and scale affects them. The easy take home is that 30-35% is the typical margin that makes an action worth while. Less than 15% and your better off using financial instruments where you spend less effort, less risk, and less head ache. At 40% you have luxury or items of convenience. Of course there is a lot of context in this. 

Many of the things I learned in the BPO industry (I had a crash course in Labor Laws of 3rd world countries like Phils and India, and Pay scale) apply when you consider that My Traveller Universe. Basically My idea of Angel High Tech investors, kinda of fall under the KPO business model. 

For my brother and some Friends, I plan to run this. Around July I will be able to write more because things are getting easier. Hopefully around mid August I can "start marketing" the campaign. In a worse case scenario, I'll have a Pseudo Case study/Adventure module where I can compile all my rules of thumb and list down all the skills I have observed used. Maybe save it for the company archives and database.

Thats another thing in the REAL WORLD. Seeing social and Technical skills employed and measured by Time&Motion studies as well as Six-Sigma methodologies, one begins to notice a lot of odd things.

Like Social Skills are measured and can be seen in the training of Telemarketing agents. Never has there been such a way for a person to learn social skills other than having a slight natural talent or advantage, and using it to get more practice from the rest.  

Social Talents like Charisma, Appearance, and Environments where you abundant opportunity to practice with little punishment or threat of loss, while having a sufficient reward were the circumstance that allowed skilled manipulators. The opportunity to practice had many barriers. Now telemarketing, its training and the access to so many opportunities to practice is unprecedented when compared to ages past.

 Maybe getting a telemarketing job fresh out of college would be a great way of explaining Fast-Talk, Diplomacy, Savoir-Faire etc. all at 13+

I better stop rambling.

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