thread: 2006-01-24 : Still More Character Ownership

On 2006-01-25, Vaxalon wrote:

Okay, going back and responding to #46.

I understand that when a character has spotlight, and when a player has spotlight, can be separate things.  It doesn’t happen traditionally, but there are games which are moving in that direction.

For that to happen, as I see it, the spotlit character can’t have a primary owner, because the character will very likely draw a primary owner into the spotlight when the character is in it.

In fact, that’s a good preliminary definition of primary ownership.  If a player gets drawn into the spotlight when the character is in the spotlight, then that player is a primary owner of that character.  Who does a participant look at when the question is asked, “What does the character do?”  That’s the primary owner of the character.  If the question is put to the group in general rather than to a specific player or players, then there is no primary owner.

So in order for the independence you talk about to be real, then there can be no primary ownership of characters, by definition, because as soon as there is primary ownership, the connection between the character spotlight and the player spotlight is made.

So yeah, I really, really see your point, how character (primary) ownership is intimately connected to this player relevance issue.

Now, to go back to your restated thesis, with this in mind:

We should let the story unfold, and if the story demands it, cede dominance to one or two characters for the duration of the story.

If those characters don’t have primary owners, then I’m totally cool with it.


This makes VAX go "Yes, I understand."
This post is designed to show that I understand the point made in #46.

This makes DY go "my guy != me"
If the story we're in turns out to be totally about a character you are absolutely in primary control of according to your definition, that's no reason _at all_ that you get to be a "more dominant" player than me, if the system has ways for me, playing a non-dominant character, to have effect equal to yours on the game.

This makes VAX go "Yes."
If the system has ways for you to get into the spotlight in other ways besides through your character, then yes, that can equalize things. There are things besides characters that are important in a story.

This makes VAX go "I'm not saying I can't be cool with it otherwise."

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