Metagame Belief: The goal the player has for the PC that the PC doesn't know about
I haven't seen this come up here before. Though I admit I haven't read every single thread I have tried some Search voodoo and haven't it it yet. I'm trying to figure out how to express an idea my player has for a PC but that the PC would think the opposite of the Belief until he does it. For example how do I express [and yeah, collect Artha for fulfilling] the Belief: "I will become angry enough someday to shoot a man to death." when I would like the PC has no intention of using a firearm? Does this have to be done with two contradictory Beliefs and then triggered by an external conflict between the two Beliefs such as: "I'm gonna put that Rat Bastard Jim in the ground." and "Guns are the weapons of cowards." and when my PC's chance to put Jim in the ground shows up it is at a range such that a handgun is going to do it the best?
Or do I just need to stop sleeping with the tape blanker running under my pillow?
Last edited by Dwight; 02-11-2008 at 07:16 PM.
Reason: I need to hire a secretary to type my internet posts for me.
The easy answer is to simply write conflicting Beliefs. You even get paid when they come into conflict with each other.
You mean something like a PC with the Belief “I do not believe in violence and would never harm another person” steering towards a dramatic situation where the player would like to unleash his hidden violent side, right?
I think you’re looking for the Moldbreaker rule (p 66 brown book). If the player acts out his inner conflict in an engaging manner, he can be nominated for a Persona point.
Classical drama fodder. Just try to count the characters in all those westerns and action flicks who just want to live in peace and not resort to violence … oh, if only people left them alone. Of course people never do.
The game is about challenging beliefs. If your guy believes something that will never be challenged in play, like, say, that gnomes are filthy and deserve exile to the Frozen North, don't write that on the sheet.
The only beliefs you should turn into Beliefs are those which you want challenged. What's the breakdown on conflict in narrative? Man vs Self, Man vs Man, Man vs Environment? (It's been a long time since English class.) Think in those terms. Either yourself, or someone else, or the world you live in, should have it in for that belief.
I'd frame the scenario you're talking about as a belief like "Guns are for cowards, I will settle my troubles by the sword/lightsaber/fists/lawyerly correspondence/almighty love of Buddha." Then I'd let it be known that I'm interested in conflict between that belief and my other belief about hating my cousin, or my relationship with my cousin where we hate each other, or whatever else is going on.
I wouldn't write the prophetic belief, I'd just put the pacifistic belief in opposition to the one that says whatever I think is gonna drive me to shoot a fool, and let it happen. Who knows, you might surprise yourself!
To draw on Bobo's (do you have a real name here?) example using Westerns, Clint Eastwood's character in Unforgiven doesn't have a belief about protecting his kids. Would he do just about anything to protect them? I imagine he would. But it's not a direction he's interested in taking the story, so he doesn't put the belief on the sheet. He does have a belief about how his bad days are behind him, and one about how he's gonna claim the whores' reward. The conflict therein drives the movie (along with his relationship with Ned, etc). He doesn't write a belief saying that the Devil's gonna come home to roost once he picks up a gun again, because 1) he doesn't need to, it'll come from playing out the conflicts the GM and the other players push onto the beliefs he has, and 2) writing that belief is playing the game before the game's even started.
Yep, some Clint Eastwood characters were exactly what I had in mind.
Also, added name to my sig.
Ah, that's the one. Now I just need to fire up my BE PDF to find it there. Thanks.
Originally Posted by Bobo
P.S. See kids, this is what happens when you GM BW too much instead of running as a player. My Artha-milking-fu is weak. I've realized this and I'm now trying to crunch before my GMPCs get their worm loving butts handed to them.