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November 14th, 2006, 20:55
Originally Posted by TheMadGamer View Post
But really, by that logic, the character should just play itself then. Because as a player, if I take any control of the character in any way, say, such as running him around the game world to places that I choose to go to as the player, isn't that a violation of the complaint that blocking should be purely stat based? If I as the player choose to talk to a certain NPC, is that the character's choice or my choice? If it's my choice, have the developers failed? The truth is that to play a role playing game is to accept the imperfection that exists that while there may be a line between the player and the character, that line is always going to be blurry. As developers make games that blur that line in different way I find it better to try to enjoy the experience rather than bitch and moan that the line should be blurred differently.
There isn't a blurred line. The difference is between physical and mental control. Roleplaying is a mental activity, not a physical one. If I were a cripple I could roleplay an untra agile ninja that can do flips and crap. Poelplaying always has been and always will be a mental activity. You can not make a clear devide between mental aspects when the person is supplying the personality of the character played. Obviosly, a retarded person could not roleplay a genius very well, but a genius should be able to roleplay a retarded person with ease. A blind person could roleplay a sharp-eyed ranger with fantastic elven super vision. A big fat fattty fatso lady with a mustache and horrible acne and nose warts could roleplay a beautiful princess. You supply only the character, nothing physical in a roleplaying game. And character's character falls 100% in the land of the mind, not the body. The character's physical attributes are supplied by numbers, and the player's physical actttributes have no effect on these numbers. So a real life midget doesn't have to play a hobbit or dwarf in a roleplaying game, he can be a huge half-orc with bulging muscles and the ability to have his feet touch the floor when sitting.

This is really a very easy concept to grasp. There is no fine line between when a game incorporates too much player physical ability and skill into an rpg. If any amount is important then the game isn't an rpg. This can be easily tested by what i call the Stephen Hawking Test. If Stephen could give dirrections to someone hitting the controls and that dictates the actions happening in the game 100%, its an crpg. If not, its not. So Oblivion isn't an rpg because there is no way for him to say what to have the character he is roleplaying do as he could in a pen and paper rpg, or in real crpgs like ToEE.

In Oblivion and other non-rpg action games of that ilk, your character's skill doesn't dictate if s/he is a master swordsman, your personal skill does. So if you aren't playing the role, but are yourself the role, you cannot be playing an rpg. its simple logic.

Please realise this is not an argument of what games are good or bad, or what games are the awesomest in the world, just clarification on an element of video games that must not be present for the game to logically in a sane world be considered an rpg, and that of course is the twitch factor, or player physical input factoring in to success or failure of a character who is supposed to be roleplayed, not played factor.

I am right, there is no getting around it. This isn't an argument, just fact. RPGs and crpgs cannot incorporate player physical ability into a game and still call it an rpg. Its impossible. It is a fallacy and violates the theory of non-contracdiction and just simple common sense. Maybe its fun, or funner, or even the funnest way to do it, but its not an rpg when alls said and done.
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