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Weekly Design Discussion Idea List

This is a repository for topic ideas for the series shown here: Weekly Design Discussion: Collected Topics, run by vestige.

The list below collects my ideas (often quite cryptic) as well as suggestions from others (mostly culled from this thread: Soliciting feedback on the Weekly Design Discussion (even if you've never participated!)). Please feel free to add more suggestions - or, of course, to simply post a topic yourself! The worst thing that could happen to the forum is if the WDD were the only venue for posting new topics. Or, you can geekmail me with suggestions

Also, if any of these topics particularly interest you, feel free to add notes or just a "+" to tell me that people are interested.

Alternate Character Advancement
Alternate character roles (like in Changeling)
Social mechanics (like in Amber)
Rules that apply to players instead of characters (like laughing in Toon)
Dice replacements / Alternative randomizers - Cards, point pools, chit draws... +
Designing for non-linear narratives; see In A Grove.
Design elements of Nomic-style games: learning, currencies; see Mornington Crescent.
Playing with language: language as currency, language as levelling up; see George Perec's A Void.
Explicit pacing guides
How often should characters succeed at tasks?

Bell curves
Background abilities
Clue distribution
Task v. conflict resolution
Maps and minis
Survivability +
Metagame structure +
Beginning the story
Economics +
Effects-based powers
How focused should a game be?
How specific should powers get?
Random encounters/wandering monsters
Evoking intensity
Is an economy necessary for narrative qualities?
Skills, attributes, and realism
Lonely fun
Mechanics of comedy
How do you introduce old players (used to a particular system) to a new game (with different mechanics)?
How do you introduce new players to their first game?
Encouraging (or discouraging) over the top play
RPG design and baby toys (selling the design to readers, and then getting them to play)
Deliberately shutting down options
Character creation as a way to avoid problems

There were also some suggestions for "practical" topics rather than questions about systems and theory. I'm not sure how they fit into this; maybe a supplemental series at some point, since I have zero expertise whatsoever. Here are the suggestions so far:

Book format
Generating Buzz (like Dogs in the vineyard vs Shadow of Yesterday or D&D vs Gurps)

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