January 7th: Assignment briefly introduced in class. Asked to watch a video that showcases an RPG game.
January 14th: Detailed overview of RPG assignment in class. Highlight first solo assignment.
February 4th: Physical copy of 1st assignment due before start of class. Class time used for groups to agree on their 1st set of group project parameters.
February 11th: Submit electronically group notes from work done on Feb 4th. In class demonstration of an RPG game (we’ll be playing a short game, called “The Search For Tiger Joe.”).
February 25th: Finish playing “The Search For Tiger Joe.”
March 3rd: Physical copy of 2nd assignment due before start of class. Class time used for groups to agree on their 2nd set of group project parameters.
March 10th, 17th, 24th, and 31st: For all groups, 3 of these 4 class sessions will be used to work on the group assignment (essentially finish the RPG assignment).
April 4th: Group assignment must be handed in via email to firstname.lastname@example.org (by midnight).
April 7th: Playing our games!
Post April 7th: Peer evaluations, and survey query.
DATES (WITH DESCRIPTIONS):
First class. Introduction to global issues from a science and arts perspective. We’ll have a bit of time to introduce the RPG assignment to the class, as well as practice a little role playing via a networking game. To get a sense of what a table top role playing game is like, we recommend checking out this video which will give you a general idea of the game play (not required, but it’s kind of fun to watch). Note, however, our assignment is less about dwarves and orcs and more about attempting to imagine a future version of our planet.
We’ll spend a good chunk of time going over the ttRPG assignment in the second half of this class. Essentially, we’ll go over the overview section of this document in detail.
1st solo assignment (~ 1500 words on physical geographic, climate considerations) will be discussed – link to Solo 1 Assignment: note due on Feb 4th.
First solo world building assignment due before start of class (physical copy please). This is because it also acts as pre-work so that group discussion over world building elements is better served. Note that the entire 3 hour period for this date is devoted to this task. (pre-reading for assignment is the IPCC AR5 Working Group 1 report for policymakers (The physical science basis) – http://www.ipcc.ch/pdf/assessment-report/ar5/wg1/WG1AR5_SPM_FINAL.pdf
At the end of this session, you should be able to agree as a group on the features of your world as outlined in the Solo Assignment Part 1 exercise PLUS a first crack at brainstorming ideas for a possible game narrative.
Please submit (electronically to email@example.com, or share via google docs) your group’s report from Feb 4th. We won’t be marking it at this stage, but will need it when we look at your second assignment.
The second half of this class will be devoted to showcasing the game mechanic that will be used in the games created. We will have a mock adventure for the class to go through, complete with dice and with Dave and Allen playing the GM role. We will hand out the game mechanic during this class – if you have a set of RPG dice, we encourage you to bring them out. This game will also likely take up a little time at the start of the subsequent class (Feb 25th)
2nd solo assignment (~ 2000 words on human and biological, societal structure, culture, stresses, conflicts) will be discussed – link to Solo 2 Assignment: note due on March 3rd.
Second Solo assignment due before start of class (physical copy please). This is because, like before, it will also acts as pre-work so that group discussion over world building elements is better served. Note that the entire 3 hour period for this date is devoted to this task. (pre-reading for assignment is the IPCC AR5 Working Group 2 report for policymakers (Impacts, adapations and vulnerabilities) – (https://ipcc-wg2.gov/AR5/images/uploads/WG2AR5_SPM_FINAL.pdf)
At the end of this session, you should be able to agree as a group on the features of your world as outlined in the Solo Assignment Part 2 exercise PLUS (if there is any extra time) more discussion around brainstorming started in the February 4th class.
March 10th or 17th
Either doing the DNA lab.
Group time to flesh out/finalize the 2 required backstories (see group assignment link), work out (at least) a skeleton of the adventure scenario (i.e. their story elements/scenes, drafts of maps), as well as discuss what everyone’s player characters can be (i.e. so we avoid situations where everyone is the same). Homework will entail each student fleshing out their player character contribution (in principle, each group will therefore have a set of pre-generated characters for people to choose from and use when the games are played on the last day). Homework may also entail delegating folks to finalize backstory and map tasks, as well as brainstorm for possible details associated with each element/scene.
March 24th and 31st
During these two weeks, each group will have both class slots devoted to working on their Brave World Now assignment. For the March 24 class, you can use the 3 hour block to essentially work on your elements/scenes so that they are starting to be in good shape. Homework is delegation of final editing tasks, such that your final group work class on March 31st can be devoted to making sure everything is finished up and polished and good to go for submitting.
Note that although we have access to your google doc works in progress, we will ask for a final copy of your game that can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org on April 4th. This is to ensure that everyone has something ready for our final class.
In each group, one or two individual will be assigned the role of GM (game master, narrator, guide, etc). The other members of the group will rotate to another adventure module, whereby gaming will ensue! Bring snacks!
Post April 7th
Apart from handing in the group adventure assignment (on April 4th). There will be a few follow-up items for students to fill. These include a short feedback survey on how the game you played went; a form to be filled, where you have an opportunity to express comments/frustrations about members of your own group not contributing equally to the assignment tasks. As well, we will be sending out a research survey on the whole ttRPG experience. We are curious to know whether you thought it was an effective means of considering the course content, and also whether it was effective in allowing you to visualize other perspectives outside your own.
1. Delta Vega- Star Trek by Albert Whitlock, 1966 (via https://www.flickr.com/photos/x-ray_delta_one/4919013338)
2. circa 1964, LIFE magazine (via https://www.flickr.com/photos/x-ray_delta_one/23065033180)
3.Perfect Body by Norman Saunders, 1939 (via https://www.flickr.com/photos/x-ray_delta_one/4151692997)
4.The Hotspur cover, 1946 (via https://www.flickr.com/photos/x-ray_delta_one/23743677710)