TABLE OF CONTENTS
Experimentation and Design
Uncertainty in Analog Role-Playing Games (Part 2) – Evan Torner
This issue of Analog Game Studies explores the structural affordances of games. Though it is clear that cultural structures, mechanical structures, economic structures, and material structures all contribute to our experience of the games we play, it is not always clear what the precise relationship between structure and experience is. This issue offers three essays which offer insight into this relationship.
Will Emigh’s essay, “Strategies for Publishing Transformative Board Games,” explores how different publishing models yield different types of games. What political and aesthetic liberties can a game published through Kickstarter offer, when compared to a game published by Hasbro? In “Sex and Play-Doh: Exploring Women’s Sexuality Through Larp,” Katherine Castiello Jones documents some of the techniques used in Cady Stanton’s Candyland and Candyland II: Ashley’s Bachelorette Party, a pair of larps designed to encourage frank and light-hearted conversation about women’s sexuality. Finally, Evan Torner returns to offer his insights on how uncertainty is a key element of role-playing game design in more ways than just throwing the dice. In “Uncertainty in Analog Role-Playing Games (Part 2),” he shows how non-canonical uncertainty mechanics, such as bidding, produce radically different types of games. Though each essay explores a different type of game, all are similar in the ways that they help reveal previously invisible relationships between structure and experience.
September 2, 2014
Featured image by Didier Goas CC BY-NC-ND.