“Beyond Words”

[The roleplaying games] I like most tend to be termed ‘surreal’ in their approach; some parts feel real, some imaginary; others symbolise greater truths. It doesn’t matter too much to me if the game has a GM or not, or labels itself a ‘story i130408170137363367game’ or as part of the Old School Renaissance; what matters to me is the generosity of spirit of those taking part. Trust is everything. I like the approach taken to this issue by the Nørwegian Style, a movement prevalent in the roleplaying scene in and around Norway until a couple of years ago.

Some generous and interesting thoughts over on the British blog A Kingdom Is.

Read the whole thing here.

Event cards for A Depressive Game of Swedish Realism

An Itras By hack

You draw an event card when the game master instructs you to do so. You, as player, interpret the card. If you interpret it wrong, the game master will take away your character sheet and write some illegible numbers on it.

Examples:

Forgot to take your pills? One of your character’s diagnoses kicks in. Describe how it affects the situation.

Silence is a blessing. Words seem meaningless. You could talk, you just don’t want to.

Norra Begravningsplatsen. Photo: Pelle Sten (Flickr/Creative Commons).

Norra Begravningsplatsen. Photo: Pelle Sten (Flickr/Creative Commons).

Normal. For the rest of the scene, your character has perfectly normal reactions to everything that happens.

The State. The character receives some unpleasant news from the government (e.g: via mail, sms, radio, or newspaper). What is it?

Divorce. Some relation in the scene is broken up. What is it, and what will the separation cause?

Mediocre. One of the characters or NPCs present in the scene has a mediocre quality, something she’s only sort of adept at. Describe what it is.

Defender of the People’s Home. Your character’s ambivalent loyalty to the social democratic ideals of the Swedish welfare state prove to be an advantage in this situation. How?

Alone in the crowd. You feel overlooked, grey and insignificant in this situation. Give us an inner monologue.

Understood. For the remainder of the scene, everyone will be quite understanding of the character’s actions, no matter what she does (it’s due to class, childhood, culture, circumstances, etc).

Bullying. Is your character the victim or one of the bullies?

Ace of Base. Some nice pop music makes you briefly forget your troubles. You may turn on music, dance, smile, sing along. When it’s turned off, everything will be worse than it was.

Photo:  Sigfrid Lundberg (Flickr/Creative Commons).

Photo: Sigfrid Lundberg (Flickr/Creative Commons).

The drug. Some drug affects a character present in the scene. Which and how?

News. The media tells of a person, place or event the character is intimately familiar with. What are the news?

Keep it in. Characters and NPCs may not express their emotions or cause a scene.

Stasis. There is no change in this scene. Everything will remain the same. There is no interesting conflict, relations and resources will remain the same as they were.

Cancer. Cancer has somehow affected a character or NPC in the scene. How?

Hangover. Someone in the scene, maybe your character, has a strong hangover. How does it affect them?

Bad Childhood. Why is the childhood trauma of one of the characters or NPCs in the scene triggered?

Joppe is dead. Someone dear to the character passes away. It could be a pet, a person or something more abstract, like hope.

Microinjustice! Something slightly unfair happens. E.g: someone helps themselves to the last piece of cake without asking if anyone else wants it.

Death. Your character dies. There is no afterlife.

Next installment: Knald! Cards for a Game of Danish Hedonism and Voluptuousness.

Not the Travelling Circus Manifesto

Snarglebarf

The Circus will change with every show, in every new location it appears.

Will there be boffer weapons? Will there be a black box? Will there be formalized rules? Will there be an attempt to create a 360 degree illusion, or could a pen symbolize a rose? Maybe, maybe not.

The Circus travels far and wide. Tanzania, Palestine, Russia, Czech Republic, North America, Brazil, even the Nordic countries are frequently visited by this colorful, ever-changing spectacle. Everywhere; learning, changing, adapting, playing, challenging, creating, getting to know, partying, laughing (sometimes crying too).

It learns from local traditions, shares its own traditions freely: acts, tools and tricks.

You can never know for sure who belongs to the Circus. Maybe that businesswoman who just passed you on the street is a member. Maybe your shrink? You’d be inclined to think that dreadlocked neo-hippie juggling on the square would know, but he turns out…

View original post 140 more words

Welcome to Nørway

Photo: Snarglebarf

Photo: Snarglebarf

On this site, you’ve found an eclectic sample of Norwegian role-playing games, game poems and blog post in English since 2007.

Over the years, a lot of posts have accumulated. It can be a bit confusing: where to begin?

Here are some suggestions.

Reader favorites

These are some of the most popular games on the site, simply based on all-time clicks recorded:

Archipelago III, and predecessors
A popular GM-less game of collaborative story-telling, utilizing some innovative mechanics. Layout and everything!

Zombie Porn
Zombie Porn is a GM-less role-playing game that asks the question: “How far are you willing to go to survive in the undead entertainment industry?”

Until We Sink
An instant classic in the tiny Norwegian indie developer’s community. A surreal murder-mystery, GM-less, cards directing play and giving some instructions.

Blog posts

Photo: Snarglebarf

Photo: Snarglebarf

Role-playing poems
A brief text introducing the concept of role-playing poems, 15 minute games anyone can write and play!

Status in small communities
Some thoughts on the nebulous force of “status” and how it works in tiny creative communities like ours.

Deal
A dark game-like meditation on love. Or money. Or something else.

Sex
Some thoughts on making a collaborative storytelling game about sex.

Short games

A Trip to the Moon
A calm, friendly game to be played out as a bedtime story.

Fiction – a flexible freeform framework
The outline of a freeform game you make from scratch with your friends, with a few tools, rules and suggestions to help you get started. Can be used as an add-on to Play With Intent.

Going Galt
A critique of Ayn Rand’s “philosophy” in role-playing format.

Don’t Read the Comments
A short game utilizing the comments section of various online media for content.

Photo: Snarglebarf.

Photo: Snarglebarf.

Qualia
An anti-plot immersive exploration which may have the potential to be one of the most frustrating, or magical, role-playing experiences of your life.

Role-playing poems

Identity Poems
Sort of an existentialist take on the role-playing poem format.

The Bechdel Test
Play female characters from movies talking about something other than a man!

A Pebble
“A role-playing poem that takes on the issue of abortion.”

If you prefer print, the Nørwegian Style anthology (2009) is still available over on Lulu (15$), presenting 17 of these games.

Miss your favorites? Have experience with some of these games you’d like to share? Feel free to drop us a few lines in the comments.

Sex

A concept sketch

For our local version of Game Chef, my friend Martin (co-author of Itras By) once designed a game called Sex. I played it at HolmCon, and found it to be a strange and anemic experience. But I liked the core idea: to make a collaborative storytelling game about fucking.

I’m sure there are a number of freeforms that already deal with this, but of the top of my head I can only think of Martin’s game, Jonas Trier-Knudsen’s 600 and Tobias Wrigstad’s Gang Rape. The latter two look at negative aspects of sex; the absurd alienation of a record gang-bang attempt in the porn industry (inspired by Chuck Palahniuk’s “Snuff”) and rape. I guess  you could say rape is more about violence than sex, but it’s a related topic.

I’d like to see a game that was more about the everyday interactions of sex, both the positive, quirky, tricky and weird. But not “gruesome”.

I think I’d like there to be some kind of facilitator/GM function. I also envision some cards feeding the game. Maybe scenes. Maybe topics.

Examples:

Negotiation
May I?
Would you?
Please
Be gentle
Be rough
Should we…
Please don’t

I think the actual intercourse is the core theme of the game, but it might also be interesting to deal with some of the immense amount of stuff “around” sex. The rules lovers make for each other, the negotiations you enter, conditioned cultural responses, forbidden desires and taboo subjects.

Sex is one of the most powerfully emotional things we do. I’d like the game to enable both giggles and laughs, but also more profound interactions. It could be a two-player game, but I think the intensity of that would be a bit too much for my tastes. I think three is a good number, with one player serving as facilitator, giving cues and hints, cutting & establishing scenes, describing setting and other stuff besides what the characters do.

I don’t know if I’d use pre-written characters, I think maybe the players can workshop some sketches, loosely based on themselves or people they’ve had sex with. Maybe you just play one single intercourse, maybe there are 3-5 scenes total. I think it should be a brief game, 2 hours tops. I read somewhere that the average intercourse lasts 11 minutes? I don’t know if that’s supposed to include foreplay, but I guess some people are skimpy on foreplay.

From 600, I’d steal the warm-up exercise where the players talk about “the weirdest porn they’ve seen”, but I’d change it into “relate some sexual experience they’ve had”. Maybe one positive and one funny? Taking turns to describe? There should probably also be some trust-building exercises. I think it’s a non-touch game, strictly verbal “sitting around a table talking”. Semi-larping like in “600” was maybe good for that game, but also very awkward.

I seem to recall “Gang Rape” (I never played it) having a rule about looking into the victim’s eyes as she narrates what your character does to her body? Some variation of that might work, but I’d like the characters in this game to have agency and for the sex to be completely consensual (but part of the game might be figuring out what you actually want and how to relate that). But eye contact is good, and maybe playing around a bit with who’s actions the players get to describe. Or that could be one of the cards: you describe what your partner does, he/she describes your reactions, or some similar weirdness.

I’m not particularly interested in making it “educational”, but I think you could learn stuff from such a game, or that it’d foster some kind of reflections.

I think it should be voluntary whether you play a man or a woman, whether it’s gay, heterosexual, group sex or something else. But I believe the intensity will increase with “close to home” play, riffing of your own experience and body.

Would I play it? Yes, I think I’d like to. Like many “intense topic” games, I don’t know if it’d be ideal with “random awkward nerd at festival”, but if we design it the right way, I think it could be robust enough for that to work as well.

Will I actually design it? Not sure. But you could, if you want to.

Indie Spring Festival: With Norwegian games!

Check this out: https://bundleofholding.com/presents/SpringFestival – for a limited time, you can get a bunch of great games super cheap! And part of the money goes to charity, so you’re saving the world a little as well.

The Norwegian influence is heavy in this bundle. Itras By was first published in Norwegian. Love in the Time of Seið was written by an American and a Norwegian. And the Game Poems are inspired by the Norwegian Role-Playing Poems. (Crossroads was written by a Dane, which means it’s almost Norwegian 😉

So yeah. Run along and check it out!

A history of Archipelago

Archipelago is the most played of my games. Probably because it’s one of the best – and because it’s one of the few that actually have a market potential. Many of the games I make are things that few people are interested in, and fewer actually play. Because, you know, I’m a fucking artist.

I say “my” – and for some years it was just my game; but without Jason Morningstar it wouldn’t be what it is now, as you’ll see from the history below. He’s an awesome guy. We’ve met for about 10 minutes, during which he mostly said “I’m ill and have to go to my room”, or “could you talk to this guy, because I’m exhausted from being ill”. Other than that, we know each other only via the internet.

Aaaanyway. Let’s go.

0. Earthsea

A million years back, I wanted to make an Earthsea role-playing game. I started out a campaign with the basic premise that we’d add rules as we needed them. We ended up with a ridiculously simple “roll 1d6 and see what happens” system for ship combat, I think. Other than that, everyone played several characters, and we more or less took turns focusing on each player’s major character while other people played support. The basic vibe from this game made it into Archipelago, and is still a vibe that lives on in some of my best campaigns. I can’t entirely describe it. I’m not going to try.

Since I and my group had no idea what we were doing (this was probably around 1992), we tried out some shared narrative responsibility and failed pretty badly. At one point, a bunch of NPCs hosed a major character for no reason, and we had no way to stop what was just simple player dysfunction. That problem followed me through several later GM-less efforts, such as Will the Emperor Fall?, which had a memorably stupid playtest session where the main focus was the branded buttocks of one of the characters. I wanted the rules to work, and didn’t want to arbitrarily veto stuff, so I sat there and endured while the other players giggled and made my epic fantasy game into a ridiculous parody. These players are still my best friends, and people I love to play with. They’re still stupid, too.

1. Archipelago

In 2007 I designed Archipelago. I do not recall how. A lot of it just came to me as a result of thoughts that had been going on for 10-15 years, and all of a sudden it just seemed to fit together. I had no idea this would be the game that worked. It did work, although not all the people in the first playtest liked it. I changed almost nothing from first playtest to publication.

Archipelago contained the famous “Do it differently” phrase, which was made specifically to make it impossible for my best friends to fuck up the game. It also contained “More details”, which was based on the writing style of Ursula K LeGuin, author of the Earthsea books. She sometimes jumps in and adds a lot of detail about some more-or-less random setting element, making it appear as if the entire world has depth and detail. She has explained that in reality, she knows nothing more about the worlds she creates than what is written in the books; it’s all just a clever trick. I like that trick, and it works in games.

Players could have ownership of different elements of the fiction. This was done to make sure that things like, for instance, geography or the nature of magic had some consistency – things in GM-less games can get pretty gonzo pretty quickly if everyone can just add to everything.

The first version of the game had a simple resolution mechanic, drawing cards from a standard deck of playing cards. That changed later.

There were veto rules, pretty much lifted directly from Dirty Secrets by Seth Ben-Ezra, which had just come out.

Destiny points were based on the idea that major characters had destinies. The technique of writing them down so people would play towards them was from Eirik Fatland’s fate play technique. The idea of having several destinies, and letting people choose from them, was based on another game where people could choose from suggestions – I think Penny For Your Thoughts, but I could be wrong.

2. Archipelago II

A few people I didn’t personally know played Archipelago I, and gave feedback. (Chris Bennett, Robert Earley-Clark, Willem Larsen and Chris Peterson). That made me think the game might have, as we say in Norwegian, “livets rett” – the right to live. In the summer of 2009 I suddenly decided to make a new version of the game, adding a few elements.

One new element was resolution cards based on impro theatre. These cards, labeled “Yes, and…” and “No, but…” and similar, were something I’d made & tried out for an Itras By campaign in 2007 (for more about the relationship between Itras By and Archipelago, see http://www.story-games.com/forums/discussion/18000/itras-by-and-archipelago-a-love-story/p1).

The other element was fate cards, based on the chance cards Ole Peder and Martin had made for Itras By.

These cards were just thrown in. I’d never playtested them for Archipelago, and I put the game on the internet with no further testing.

3. Last Train out of Warsaw

So I was pretty happy with the game – at least, the way the ritual phrases worked. I’d put some thought into it, and could see how they made groups work better, which was something I was thinking a lot about (I put an essay on group dynamics into Archipelago II). I was a little frustrated that people weren’t immediately picking it up, playing it, and carrying me through the streets on their shoulders while sacrificing goats and wine and chocolate to me, but that’s just how I am. A few people did play it, though, and it started getting a litttttle bit of buzz.

Suddenly, Jason Morningstar posted this on the Nørwegian Style blog:

“I really like the game and would like to hack it in my own directions, and wanted your approval before I started.”

And I went, huh? And sure, and what? And he’d written an entire game, an Archipelago hack with a scenario and ready-made characters. Completely not the generic game I’d made. I tried it out and he put it on the internet.

4. Crazy shit happens

For the next year or two, people started doing stuff with Archipelago. Jamie Fristrom designed his own cards, and made a hack combining Archipelago and James Wallis’ Once Upon a Time. Willem Larsen came up with new phrases, techniques and even ASL signs. Pablo Martínez translated it into Spanish, Maitresinh into French. Anders Nygaard made a Stormtrooper hack. Richard Williams made a game, Anarktica, expanding on the Archipelago rules. And Rafael Chandler made a hack using miniatures and dice. (Yeah, I KNOW!)

5. Love in the Time of Seið

While crazy shit was happening (the exact chronology can be pieced together from the post on Archipelago II, I think), I contacted Jason asking if he wanted to collaborate on a game. He did, and we made Love in the Time of Seið. It was partly based on a movie script I never finished, but I’m not sure if I ever told Jason that; anyway, he and I changed it a lot from its initial premises. He made a very tight web of relationships for the characters, and we made up a lot of cool locations. I think we actually used Google Wave to collaborate, moving to Google Docs after a while. It was very exciting for me working with Jason, who I have a lot of respect and admiration for.

The game had some innovations and changes, especially the use of location cards, the introduction of Themes and Events and theme guides. This was a continuation of the Fate cards in Archipelago II, only tied much tighter into the setting and characters. We also gave each characters some questions to answer, based on the Montsegur technique.

To make things easy, and because we’re such awesome human beings, we give the proceedings to charity. Jason has handled all the practical matters, and did the layout for the game.

6. Archipelago III

In 2012 Jason contacted me. He wanted to make a better-looking, better-edited & updated version of the rules.

We decided to add two new phrases to the official ruleset: “Help”, to get input from the group; and “Harder”, to encourage players to really push where it hurts. Both had been tried and found to make the game more fun. We removed the use of tokens to track location, since none of us actually used that, and we simplified the veto rules.

Jason worked on the resolution cards, adding some, changing others, to make a bigger and more varied set.

7. What now?

We’ve had two aborted attempts at sequels. Now, however, we’ve got a pretty-much-finished game, a sister game to Love in the Time of Seið, which I’m very happy with. It’s sexy, full of intrigues, and has interesting gender-roley stuff going on. We need to edit it more and get design for it, and then we’ll put it out there.

Follow-up to “Status in small communities”

Some additional thoughts after my last blog post.

Category: Connectedness

I was going to write this, but plain forgot. This one is connected to visibility, and is very relevant for cultural production.

  • Do you have friends who can tell people how awesome you are?
  • Do you have high-status people who can help you gain visibility?

 

The flashlight metaphor

I tend to think of status like this: Every member of a community has a little flashlight – something they can use to shine on themselves or others, to direct attention.

  • The higher your status, the stronger your flashlight – if you’re a high-status individual, people will look at the things you point at.
  • The better you’re connected, the more friends you have that can shine their flashlights on you.
  • A group of friends who keep shining on each other will get a lot of attention, and a lot of people will get jealous or angry that they’re hogging the spotlight.
  • If you’re not connected at all, you’ll have to shine on yourself to get attention, and that can backfire, because it makes you look selfish.
  • When you’re in the light, you better have something to show, because otherwise people will be less inclined to point at you the next time you get your chance.
  • The light you receive is not directly connected to the quality of your work or person. You can be great and stand there in the dark, because nobody’s heard of you and you don’t have any friends in this community.
  • Light hangs around for a bit, and then fades away.

Status in small communities

The word “status” gets used a lot in discussions, especially in some gaming communities I’m part of. This is my attempt to understand and describe what the word means, and how status works in a small community. I’ve spoken to people from different countries and communities to try to get different viewpoints; however, this isn’t a scientific article in any way, and the thoughts presented here are my own, incorporating ideas and thoughts from many sources.

My intention when starting this article was to give some sort of definitive answer. Not going to happen. This is a part of an ongoing discussion, but it might be a good reference for later talk. Enjoy, and comment!

What is status?

Social status, according to Wikipedia, is “the honor or prestige attached to one’s position in society”. However, it’s not as simple as that: You don’t hold only one position in one fixed society. Rather, your status is relative to each specific community – and each member of a community will have their own idea of what your status is. It’s a moving target – one of those words that we use that everyone knows what means until you start investigating it. (For more words like that, check out “immersion”, “art” and “love”).

But let me try to define it at least a little bit. It seems status isn’t just one thing – rather, it’s composed of different categories. You could say that the higher your “score” in each category, the higher your total status. I mean, if you were a gamer, you could say that.

So here, without further ado: The categories of status.

Category: Visibility in the community

Do people have reason to notice you in the community? For instance…

  • Are you present at gatherings, big and small? Cons, festivals etc.

  • Do you make your presence known? Are you charismatic, well-dressed, a party animal…

  • Do you make your voice heard? At online fora, panel debates etc.

Radars

People notice different things, of course, and have different filters on reality – so one person might not notice you while another knows exactly who you are and where your children go to school. This is based a lot on personal interest, but it also seems there are different types of relational radars, by which I mean:

Some people notice social hierarchies. I know I do: I pay attention to who gets to speak when, who gets to interrupt people, who gets listened to, who makes the final call in group decisions. I sometimes see people as leaders and followers, and base social decisions on that.

Some people care more about social closeness. Who do you trust, personally? Who gets to be in your inner, most intimate circles, and who stays just a little further out? If this is your radar, you’re likely to talk about people in terms of whether they’re trustworthy, how they treat others, because this information is important to you. (Also, see the “Ethics” category below.)

Category: Contribution to the community

This is not the same as visibility. If you do a lot for the community, some people will notice and some won’t. If you talk a lot and do nothing, again, some will notice and some won’t.

So are you an unselfish contributor? Do you do things not just for your own sake, but for the sake of everyone? For instance…

  • Do you organize things for others? Cons, trips etc?

  • Do you help others get their projects going? With funding, social ninja-ing, proofreading etc?

  • Do you set up organizations that strengthen the community?

Category: Cultural production

This one’s a bit tricky, and I’m not sure if I’ve nailed it – that is, something about it feels fuzzy and undefined, but it’s the start of a thought.

  • Do you produce artifacts that are valued by the community? For instance, if you’re in a gaming community, are you a game designer?

This is related to both contribution and visibility; being a cultural producer makes you more visible, and it’s a contribution, but it’s not an unselfish one. These things make this category interesting and hard to pin down.

Category: Attractiveness

Weighted, of course, by what community you’re in – however, there’s no escaping the fact that looks matter.

  • Are you, by the standards of the community, physically attractive?

  • Do you dress right? Or even set the tone for how to dress?

Of course, here a lot of sexual undercurrents and unwritten rules make things a bit muddled. For instance, if you’re a very beautiful and sharply-dressed woman, that might make it harder for you to be accepted for some positions, in some circles etc.

Category: Ethics

The wrong behavior can really fuck up your status in a community, no matter what else you do.

  • Do you behave like a good model participant/leader should?

  • Is your personal conduct good?

  • Is your personal conduct as people would expect from your position?

Fighting is an interesting thing here. It’s wrong to start a war (for instance, to conquer an oil-producing nation while lying about your motives) or a big public fight (for instance, to make the other guy/girl accept that You’re The Smartest). Still, fights can give you great visibility, and as a leader, you might be expected to fight… so yeah. It can make you popular, because we’re animals.

Intra-community behavior

This might be a separate category, or maybe it belongs here; but it’s important to some how you treat others, as people. For instance:

  • Do you see others and help them contribute?

  • Are you kind and helpful to newcomers, and try to make them part of your community?

Category: Influence/power

Yeah, it’s good to be the king. It’s also good to own the web site that everyone visits, so you can decide what’s cool and what’s not. Or to be the person who decides what projects get funded or not.

For instance:

  • Can you make others do what you tell them?

  • Can you make decisions that impact what others can do in the community?

So, there you have it.

That’s what I’ve got right now. If you find this useful or thought-provoking, please let me know in the comments! (I’ll be moderating them, of course, so be nice.)

Follow-up to “My Scene is Dead”

There’s been a LOT of talk about my previous post. On G+, on Facebook, on blogs and fora and in person. I wanted to follow up with some key points. None of these are direct quotes from anyone (I think), but they’re meant to sum up arguments that I see here and there.

Bear in mind that I’m summing up only my personal perspective, from what I see going on. From where you sit/stand, things may look different.

 

1. People are still playing games

Yes, they are. I am, too. Right now I’m in two campaigns and one semi-regular group, and we’re talking about setting up a new thing for one-shot games. I know my friends play a lot, too. But the visible, communal discussions and design are pretty much gone. Which is too bad, because we’re not sharing our thoughts and ideas. If we’re just the same gangs, sitting in the same basements, playing the same games, the hobby is dead when we die.

2. That scene was just you (Matthijs) and your buddies

Some were my buddies, some became my buddies. I think we were all open to making new friends, and many of us did. In a tiny scene, you get that – people become friends because they share passions and interests. It was me and others who had the same (sometimes obsessive) interests. This is what art movements are.

3. That scene was insular, elitist and made people feel unwelcome

(This tends to come from people I’ve never met, or from anonymous posters).

We’ve tried to make people feel welcome. We’ve tried to bridge gaps. I don’t tell people that their play preferences are wrong or stupid. People have told me that, though. We tried engaging people in discussion, to find out where all this came from, but it was like sitting in a bright room while people would spit at us from the fog outside. This whole “fight” between “camps” is pointless, a waste of time, and something nobody I know wants. Still it keeps coming up from people I’ve never met.

At my “elitist” con, complete strangers stayed at my house for days and played Draker & Demoner or Street Fighter or GURPS. At the “elitist” fora, people discussed Vampire and D&D4 and talked about why traditional games were awesome and how we could make ARCON (the major mainstream gaming festival) even better. In the “elitist” competitions, people won without anyone knowing who the hell they were.

It feels as if people wanted me and others to play and design and discuss for them. We didn’t. We did it for us. We didn’t design the games you wanted us to design, because they were already out there.

4. There’s lots of shit happening right now

Yes, there’s things going on. But not as much as before, and not by new people. My impression is that some of the people from the scene will continue doing things until we die, but still, I feel that the majority has dissipated.

5. Here’s what you should have done: (…)

You’re not really helping.

6. Here’s what you should do: (…)

Thanks. I, and most people I’ve talked to, know what we should do/have done to keep things going. However, the things we never did, we’re not doing now, and I’m not sure we ever will (in my experience, people don’t start doing things they’ve never done). So I’m not very optimistic.

7. I’m going to do some shit!

YES! Do that!

8. Scenes come and go

Yup. They do, and I think that’s just the way it is. And this one is gone now.

9. The scene is still influential abroad

I know it is, and that makes me very happy!

10. The scene was very tiny, and not representative of what the rest of us were doing

We were representative of us, and what we did was pretty amazing. I’m not representing people I’ve never met or spoken to. I do wish you’d popped by and spoken to us, though.

11. We’re all growing old, and don’t have as much time as we used to

Tell me about it! Again, cycle of life. Scenes come and go.

12. I tried to do things for the scene, but nobody listened to me

We all feel like that sometimes. I’ve felt like that A LOT. I know people won’t believe me, since I talk and talk and sometimes people answer, but yeah. The games I’ve made that nobody’s played, the magazines I’ve made that were only read by the people who made them, etc etc etc. People DO listen, even if they don’t cheer you on or answer when you talk to them (strangely enough). But then, nobody’s responsible for cheering you on, either. You do what you do, you see what happens, nobody owes you anything.

13. The things you did weren’t interesting to me or my friends

Okay.

14. I’m doing LOTS of shit ALL THE FUCKING TIME!

Tomas, I love you, you’re one of a kind, our biggest inspiration, and please keep on rocking.

15. You’re just a bunch of guys excluding all the girls

No. Ask the girls.