Tuesday, 20 October 2015

Thought Eater contest: Group dynamics

For Zak's Thought Eater contest I had to write an essay on 'Group dynamics'. You can find it here. It is the first one.

I really enjoyed writing my part and thought I had done a decent job. Not so! According to Zak's Google+ poll I lost in a dramatic way from the other contestant.

So, what went wrong?

Well, the first thing is that I took the subject literally and wrote about group dynamics within the player's group, which was the straightforward way to go. The other contestant wrote smartly about group dynamics within a certain group in the game itself; the villains to be more specific.
And although the latter was definitely the more original one, I have to admit that I was a bit hestitant on my take. However, after browsing around I couldn't find that many (good) writings about group dynamics within a group of RPG players, so I went for that. I guess it would have been wiser to find a more original view on the matter.

There are two more things that I learned from this contest and both became apparent after reading the comments on Zak's G+ account:
1) Game content is pivotal
2) Elaborate on the game content

I focused on the processes around the table and not on the table. And, although I ended with a remark on in-game solutions to solve group problems, I should have delved deeper into this specific point, as that would be directly helpful at the table. It would have been interesting to see how one could change the mood and dynamics around the table by setting your pieces in a certain way within the game itself.

Should have done that and might do it soon in a future post.

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