OK, following on from this thread
and this comment:
As an aside, I'm down for Bronte play formalization and craftiness coming more into play in games.
how about this...Patchworka story game for people who like to fidget with their hands while they roleplayBefore the Game
A large piece of paper and some pens
A variety of crafting materials (things like wool, scraps of fabric, knitting/crochet needles, paints/crayons, figurines to paint, coloured card, glue, glitter, buttons, lego bricks, moulding clay, anything you like, really)
Draw lines on the piece of paper dividing into a board of evenly sized squares - each square will be controlled by a player. If you have an odd number of players, the final square will be 'neutral' and be controlled by popular acclamation of the player group.
Have a conversation with the players about genres that they're interested in, and 'game ratings' that they're comfortable with (eg Gen, PG, R18).
The starting player is the person who brought the most craft materials to the game.
Each player takes a turn to write the name of a location in the square that they control - it can be anything, but it should be something that they find evocative (eg "The Glass Castle", "The Volcano Lair", "The Killing Fields", "The Laboratory"). If there's a neutral square, the whole group should decide what it's going to be called.
The group should then take turns selecting one of the crafting materials and writing down a character somewhere on the board (in any square). Each character should have a name, an adjective, and an archetype (eg "Balthazar, the Wicked Uncle", "Andrew Hartfield, the Cunning Scientist"). Keep doing this until everybody has passed on making a new character, or there are no more crafting materials to share out. The materials that people have selected are going to be the basis of the craft project that they will work on during the game. If there is a neutral square, put any left over materials next to it.Playing the Game
The starting player selects a character in their square to be their protagonist, and defines what that character's problem is. (Ideally, it should be something that requires the character to take action to deal with the problem.) They start to tell that character's story, using a mix of 3rd person and 1st person voice as appeals to them. When they want their protagonist to interact with a character in someone else's square, they should ask for a material that the person controlling the square has.
Each player controls all the characters in their own square, defining their actions, or roleplaying out scenes as is relevant. If there is a conflict between characters controlled by two different characters (physical, emotional, something else), both players suggest a way that that conflict might be resolved. If both players agree with one option, they should roleplay out that scene; if they disagree, the other players in the game decide amongst themselves which they prefer.
The starting player continues the scene until they've reached a good stopping point (maybe a cliffhanger?) and then passes play on to their left, for the next player to do likewise. When play comes around to the starting player again, they pick up their protagonist's story where they left off and so forth.
Characters in the neutral square are free for anyone to control as they like - if there are disagreements, ask for a group vote on what would happen.
While the stories are being told, people should work on their individual craft projects. If they've acquired a material from someone else that doesn't really suit their project - for instance, wool, when they're painting; or coloured pencils when they're knitting; they can use the new material to decorate the square that they control instead.
When they feel that their protagonist has resolved their story in a satisfying way (happy ending, unhappy ending, weird arse strange ending, whatever they like), they should use their craft project to cover their square to show that they're finished. No new characters from this square can be introduced into someone else's story, but any existing characters can continue to be used.
The game continues until the last player covers their square.After the Game
Take a photo of the board and post it in this thread so I can admire it.
(If anyone actually tries this, please let me know how it goes, I'm kinda interested if it would work now.)