PLAY SORCERER 80: V. The Game Master and Players Gather for Character Creation (15)

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15. Story, Not Simulation

The Scores and mechanics are not meant to model “reality” in any significant way. What we get from the Scores is this: A way of adjudicating and resolving conflict between the Characters and what forces (usually characters) that stand between them and what they want.

A Score represents all things that might be represented by that score. There is no specific list of skill as to how one handles a gun, for example. A Character wanting to gun someone down will use his Stamina Score.

How the Character uses the gun is up to the Player, in how the Player describes the Character using the weapon. This is how the abstract Score becomes specific—through specific moments of play.

This will, of course (or should be), influenced by the Descriptor applied to the Score. A woman with military experience is going to handle a gun differently than a man’s whose physical abilities depends on uppers.

Depending on how you Describe the actions of a Character, the Game Master might give you Bonus Dice. In this way, the Character is rewarded for the descriptive power of the Player. It is possible, for example, for a clumsy drug addict, who has never held a gun let alone fired one, to have his Player describe with a comic phrasing how the addict fumbles with the gun an enemy rushes him in such an engaging way that the Game Master gives him Bonus Dice for the manner of the narrative. On the other hand, cool description of how a trained sniper sets up her shot from a rooftop—terse and tense and full of little details—can gain Bonus Dice as well.

The point here is not to discuss competence vs. incompetence (those are just the examples), but to make it clear that the Scores a part of the larger process of playing Sorcerer—which is making story.

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