Re: Do LitRPGs necessitate violence?

My first experience with an MMO RPG was the original Ultima Online, way back in the late 90's.

It was, well, very different from what most people associate with that genre of game today. Yes, it had plenty of options for those wanting to go out and slay monsters (or each other), and areas with "phat loot".

It didn't have levels.
It didn't have experience.
It didn't have classes.

What it did have, was a stat pool, a skill pool and a list of trainable skills as long as your arm. And a lot of those skills were not fighting orientated.

Although the game was broken in so many ways, the end result was that you had a sizeable proportion of the player base that hardly, if ever, ventured outside of the safe zones and dedicated their entire time to pursuits either peaceful, productive (or nefarious, if you were so inclined).

Wanted to gather herbs, brew potions and poisons and wander around town with a menagerie of tamed rabbits? Go for it.
Wanted to set up an inn on a main road between towns, where people could buy food and drink and maybe a few bandages? Sure.

Most importantly, the game had a proper economy. Almost everything could be crafted, and effectively everything was consumable - which meant that the player base was expected to produce it's own equipment and supplies.

The point of this rambling post? Simply that here you have a real life example of a popular (at the time) RPG that, while it did have violence as the main draw, it wasn't necessitated to have a fun, fulfilling gameplay experience. If it's possible for a computer RPG to pull this off, it logically follows that it should be possible for a LitRPG to do the same.

Re: Do LitRPGs necessitate violence?

So i kinda think that one of the more important aspects of LitRPGs is that the system rewards behavior that the author supports (generally) and that because the system clearly has a bias towards what skills/events/activities/actions it supports then why can't we have a viciously pacifist system?

Systems have the absolute power to shape society and behavior, it's what they do. So if you have a system that only rewards painless slaughter for butchers, that only gives xp if they separate the animal into all it's various useful parts, that takes away xp for wasting materials, that provides extra xp to farms that work within the environment they are built and grow plants that support the environment. There are just so many view points and ideologies that a system could explicitly express but all we get are individualist bs that encourages killing and murder and that says a lot about this site...

Re: Do LitRPGs necessitate violence?

Might be a bit of correlation v. causality in there too.
RoyalRoad has a high fantasy-story population, it's just kinda' the site's thing. One of the most common fantasy forms is an adventure, or a quest, and the facing of obstacles and opponents in that. (There are crafting stories in fantasy too, as well as slice of life, etc- they're just not as popularly written in a 1 on 1 comparison.)

Fantasy tends to be a violent genre as a result of this. If you mix in the fact that LitRPG makes for a popular addition to fantasy, you'll have a lot of LitRPG stories that are almost inherently violent and reward conflict. That's not necessarily because it's LitRPG, but instead, because it's a quest. The MC is expected to grow through that conflict, and LitRPG ends up being there to change the flavor of that growth, so to speak.

Almost certainly not the whole reason LitRPG stories tend to reward violence, but it seems likely that its one of them.

*Bleghhhh- look at me being somewhat serious- too weird, I don't like it. Back to the coffee maker with me, me!

Re: Do LitRPGs necessitate violence?

As I understand it, LitRPG is based on gaming, eh, Role Playing Games, thus stats like hit points, constitution, strength, intelligence, so forth. There are gaming categories like racing games, and other sports based games where stats track other, non combat statistics. If you want to write a golf epic, or a bowling trophy adventure I assume you can.