Re: How the existance of the "system" are generally explained in Litrpg?

#4
Poorly.

Generally the explanations feel more like the author felt they had to explain it and didn't actually have a great idea or care. If you don't have a fully fleshed out reason that fits well in your story? Just don't give a reason. No explanation at all can frequently be far more satisfying than the half-assed reasoning a lot of stories give. Hell, leaving it a mystery can be fun and give you even more to write about if you handle it well.

Re: How the existance of the "system" are generally explained in Litrpg?

#5
Mostly the higher beings of your universe give the MC the power, but makes it "user-friendly." Thus, the system.

How did superman get his powers again? Or harry potter? or Charles Xavier? Whatever the final reasoning is, it comes down to being part of something special. You are an alien, a witch, a mutant, and therefore you have powers. The difference between those powers and the "System" is that the system lets you "choose" your power. It lets you customize your powers by investing in it. Do you want super strength? you choose the physical route. Do you want magic? Then you put points in your brain.

Of course, if you want everything, then you cheat and make your character the OP chosen one.

Re: How the existance of the "system" are generally explained in Litrpg?

#6
My draft has a definitive answer to the system question, and it is hinted at for canny readers. Certain situations can arise where individuals can grant access and empowerment of classes through the system. Most commonly, the nobility (who own and control land) can grant access to noble classes, and noble servant classes like Knights. Certain organizations, with enough prestige and recognition, also gain the ability to grant members access to certain classes-- my Adventurers Guild functions this way granting access to an adventurer subclass.  The Nobility and guildmasters all gain some level of power from the people who are granted classes by them, and are thus empowered by the system in a "power flows up" manner. 

Extrapolating that out, it would stand to reason that other beings, like gods, who can grant access to powers and worshiper designations through the system, might also gain some measure of power in this manner. And who sits at the top of the system ultimately and gets all that power flowing up? Well, that is part of the metaplot of my story. How does the system work exactly? Again, part of the metaplot of the story. It has an answer as to the how and the why, and my main character is someone who does know these things, but for a long time I am keeping the readers in the dark on it by design. 

In the end, every fantasy story works on a system. The GameLit and LitRPG genre just puts that system out in the open for characters and readers alike. However, every author has a "way the world works" system in their own head, even if they don't clue readers into it directly. If you don't have a system then you are not going to be consistent and things will not feel worth reading. The good LitRPGs will have a reason of the why, even if it's not a focus of the story, but it's something that you always have to think about. Why does magic exist, why do monsters exist, why can people do more, why is the world the way it is? These are answers authors need to hash out before their plot hits the page, but you don't really need to have readers given these answers as long as they exist. 

Re: How the existance of the "system" are generally explained in Litrpg?

#7
OrenonawaSteevie Wrote: Never read Litrpg before yet i would like to write one (yeah DrakanLaugh , we both know why), I would like to know how most Litrpg out there explain the existance of a system?
1. Insert gods and goddess magic
2. Because they can and/or were always just “there”.
3. It’s a virtual reality videogame ala SAO style.

Pick your poison.

Re: How the existance of the "system" are generally explained in Litrpg?

#8
Figure out the goal of the system - is it antagonistic? (System apocalypse, system abduction, etc). Either have it be a parasitic/symbiotic sort of meta creature or some matter of control/power siphoning device. The creators of the system in this case are either itself (spontaneously appearing), a individual (powerful mage, god) or a group (alien/fantasy civilization, gods).

If it's benevolent, why was it created, to help people defend against some force? To help keep the world together/protect against the side effects of rampent X? Elevate people into a position of being able to defend against monsters spewing out of rifts? Depending on what the goal is you can have the same sort of creators as an antagonistic force (A powerful mage, gods, alien species) but the way the system is made and the sorts of things the system will do will change drastically.

If its neutral there can only really be one solution - its something that spontaneously appeared and exists as a natural law or alternatively has always existed. The simplest but least satisfying if a goal is to figure out why the system exists.

Finally, no matter what backstory you make, you don't have to info dump it to your readers - you don't even ever have to tell them about it unless you really like your solution. Part of the fun of a story can be not knowing how it came to be and hints in the lore could be sprinkled about giving a reason for its existence. You can even make fake solutions and theories - the natives of the world have some creation myth for the system or ancient runes have sketches of a monster being shaped like a blue box or a angleic creature made of system messages or something.

Re: How the existance of the "system" are generally explained in Litrpg?

#9
In my older works, the 'System' was exclusive to one person and was considered to be a 'Manifestation'. What is essentially an expression of an individual's will/fighting spirit made manifest in an ability, which they only acquired due to video games having a prominent effect on their life/personality. So, in that case, only they had access to it, while everyone else has their own version of an ability, so to speak.

Re: How the existance of the "system" are generally explained in Litrpg?

#10
I'm the kind of person who does too much worldbuilding that never makes it into my stories, so in every one that features a system, I know the details about how and why it came to exist.

But in the stories I read, I often find it more fun not to know.

I like it when "system" stories treat it the same way many fantasy stories treat magic. It just is.

For me, exploring its mechanics is fun. Exploring its creation, not so much.

The problem I often run into is that a system is often such a powerful and universe changing entity; any stories that delve into the how and why of it all often scale up to be too big too fast for me to find the kind of fun I like in the exploration of mechanics.


Edit: That's not to say exploring or explaining the existence of a system is inherently bad or anything. I've actually enjoyed several stories that focus on just that. The problem is that I've ended up dropping too many stories that do it poorly.

Re: How the existance of the "system" are generally explained in Litrpg?

#12
For the popular media out there, they generally run on video game logic to some extent, though depending on the situation it's either acknowledged as s game system or just considered how the world functions.  Generally if it's acknowledged as a game system, it's because the main character has been trapped or reborn in their game of choice.  The rest depend on if it is exclusive to the main character or if the world functions in this manner.

At the end of the day, the mechanics of why the system exists tend to only matter when breaking the system becomes the main plot of the story.  Otherwise, it is generally going to be handwaved because the focus of the story on the power fantasy over the world building.

Re: How the existance of the "system" are generally explained in Litrpg?

#13
Ararara Wrote: In mine, it's an advanced AI tool/weapon that was developed by "normal" people. There's mana in the universe either way, and the System helps channel and control (restrict) it. This hasn't been explained yet, though, and probably never will. It doesn't need a reason to be explained I think.
I always get annoyed when systems aren't explained, so pretty much I'm annoyed at most novels that have systems. I'm less annoyed when it's in a story where the system has pretty much just always existed and is universally accepted by all. I find it extraordinarily annoying when a system is not some force available to everyone and an individual just gets one out of the blue and an explanation is never given. I don't just consider that annoying though. That is flat out bad writing.

Re: How the existance of the "system" are generally explained in Litrpg?

#15
If you are going to try and write Litrpg, you should probably read a few first. It will help quite a bit in understanding the Genre.

As to how it's explained? 

-Some are actually video games, and this is the game giving you messages about skills, experience, etc just like in WOW, EQ, etc.
-Others are worlds specifically copied from Games, for whatever reason.
-In some, this is how the gods work
-Some are about a powerful alien race that uses humans as game pieces. 

Any number of reasons. Like there are any number of reasons Wizards casts spells, magic swords are better than normal swords. No one questions those things in regular fantasy. Nor do we question 'warp drive' or 'phasers' in star trek. (I questions a ton of shit in Star Wars, sorry.) 

Go immerse yourself in the genre before trying to write.

Re: How the existance of the "system" are generally explained in Litrpg?

#17
The Wrote: Any number of reasons. Like there are any number of reasons Wizards casts spells, magic swords are better than normal swords. No one questions those things in regular fantasy. Nor do we question 'warp drive' or 'phasers' in star trek. (I questions a ton of shit in Star Wars, sorry.)
I mean, warp drive and phasers have been discussed, questioned, and explained in extreme depth by both the fan base and creators so not sure where you're pulling that from. Also, it's not true in the least that no one questions those things in regular fantasy. A much larger portion of fantasy and sci-fi authors explain the way their magic and tech come about as well. It's also not really equatable even if what you said was 100% true. We have a basis for understanding science and even magic. We may not know exactly how a specific piece of technology works, but we know that someone scienced it up. Generally speaking we also know that someone rigidly studied magic or that magic is just some natural force of nature in a story as well. It's not plausible to most people that a system is just a natural force of nature.