Final Bits of Push Text (2 of 4)

May 3, 2006

This Volume

Aside from Clio’s cover and this introduction, Push Volume One contains the following:

Emily Care Boss, in Collaborative Roleplaying: Reframing the Game, provides an overview of games which seek to distribute control of the play experience more evenly among the players involved and speculates on the future of this type of play.

John H. Kim, in Immersive Story Methods for Tabletop Roleplaying, describes his own experiences planning an on-going game in which each player’s character was the protagonist of their own story and offers advice on how others can do the same.

Shreyas Sampat’s game, Mridangam, draws on the vocabulary of classical Indian dance, handling all out-of-character negotiations and narrative structuring through the silent exchange of gestures between players.

Eero Tuovinen, in Against the Geek, Choice, expresses his concerns about the rampant Americanization of Finnish tabletop roleplaying and explains how his small publishing operation is working against the current trend.

Finally, there’s me, Jonathan Walton, and my game, Waiting for the Queen/Tea at Midnight, which is inspired by early computer games of the “get lamp” variety and strictly limits character choices while not limiting expressions of character.

The end notes feature hat other journals dub a “Call for Papers,” encouraging clever, witty folks like you to propose content for Volume Two. The next book will indubitably be twice as exciting as this one, featuring many new friends with bold new ideas.

A Diversity of Perspectives

I hope the practice of inviting less familiar faces to participate in Push continues in subsequent volumes, so that our circle of comrades will never become too comfortable and the Push community will continue to grow in size and the diversity of backgrounds. Additionally, I hope that Push will quickly expand its focus beyond the boundaries of tabletop roleplaying to examine how other communities are roleplaying. That will, of course, require people doing other kinds of roleplaying to come write for Push, so one of my major tasks before the next volume is to begin tracking likely candidates down.

I Cast Magic Missile on Mo

Push had been in the works for a year and a half when Moyra Turkington, now one of our Guest Contributors, published a blog article which categorized different kinds of player interactions as “Push” or “Pull.” That wouldn’t have been a problem except that Mo, being a very intelligent gal, said some really great things and the terms actually began to catch on. This, again, wouldn’t have been a problem except that I’m personally much more interested in exploring Pull-oriented play techniques, which renders the title of this journal completely antithetical. Sigh.

But instead of hating Mo forever or changing the title of this journal back to the one I originally proposed (“Magic Missile”), I decided to get over it. So if you see mention of “Push/Pull,” whether in these pages or elsewhere, don’t be confused. Push was here first. Mo is the imposter.

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