- Players may enter or leave the game at any time.
- Players may not pay or expect payment for playing the game.
- The referee's decision on moves is final.
- Anyone may play a move, provided they request one.
- Players grant the right for the moderator to post their move
on this website and in any related discussion forums. All other copyrights are reserved by
Making a Move
- Players approach the referee and request the rules for their
- The referee supplies the player with the rules for their
- The player then has to decide to make the move or pass.
- If a player passes, they may request another move.
- Once the move is made, the referee may make editorial
adjustment to the move. Any changes must be approved by the player before final posting.
Rules - Example
What sort of rules can a player expect to receive?
- The player will receive a character or characters. They
character(s) may or may not be named/gendered etc. If any charcteristics are imparted on
the character(s) then these characteristics must become part of the move.
- The player will receive an address for the character(s) and
a general description of the environment in which they live.
- The player will receive information about the surrounds.
- The player will receive a set of private rules which they
must follow in writing their piece. These rules may be structural constraints or simply
things that must be included in the move.
How do you win the game? (revised 18 Sep. 2000)
In a game with so many players there is more than one way
to win. Winning depends upon participation, conversation, and of course, the playing and
solving of moves. For a full description of scoring in the game, see the Winning the Estate Game page.
What sort of rules will a player not ever receive?
- No style dictation. Players may write in any style at all.
- Complete creative freedom within the constraints set by the
referee is guaranteed.
|Got any? Please ask.
Can my character interact with his/her neighbours?
A. Yes, you have freedom to the keys
of the city so to speak. Your character can interact with any of the other characters,
introduced or not. You can give anyone a name that doesn't have one yet. You can set your
story in any time. You can create a new character entirely (and I'll put them into another
location later on). Your character can fight with other characters or be best friends with
them. They may even have relationships. Players decide. If you decide that the your
character is in bed with the Witch, then the player who plays the Witch move must decide
whether the Witch reciprocates or whether your character was lying. (or maybe, the Witch
story will be in another time and tell the story of how the two met in the past or broke
up in the future).
Q. What is collaborative writing?
A. In general, collaborative writing is the production of a
work by two or more people in cooperation. This particular game is more like a directed
writing experience. However, each writer's work will feed into a future writer's work.
Q. With so few guidelines, how could you expect
it to make sense as a whole?
A. There is a secret pattern. Play the game to work out the
Q. What is the secret pattern?
A. It's a secret. Work it out!
Q. What is a Move?
A. A Move is a work in response to a scenario and a set of
rules. A move may be written prose, poetry, script, audio, artistic, movie. It doesn't
really matter. A move may even be in another language. When you request a move, you get 30
days to put one together.
Q. What is OuLiPo?
A. OuLiPo was (and still is) a loose society of
mathematicians, writers and others, formed by Raymond Queneau in France in 1960. The name
stands for Ouvroir de Littérature Potentielle, or Workshop for Potential Literature.
Members included Claude Berge, Ross Chambers, Italo Calvino and Georges Perec. OuLiPo was
"a research team that aimed to fashion new tools for writing and to refurbish old and
forgotten ones." "[T]hey undertook a vast programme of investigation into the
formal devices used by writers over the centuries ('analytic OuLiPo') and into the
literary potential of patterns that could be cannibalised from formal languages such as
mathematics, logic, computer science, and - why not? - chess ('synthetic OuLiPo')."
(from G.Bellos, p349 "Georges Perec - a Life In Words")
GEF's Oulipian exercises
Q. What is a glass bead game?
A. Good question, I haven't really worked that out myself
yet. The phrase comes from the title of Hermann Hesse's last novel, which was set in a
post-consumerist information society. The glass bead game was a diversion played by these
future beings which consists of finding connections between ideas. Some people swear by
this system for everything from spiritual healing to financial planning.
See Glass Bead Game, The
at Yahoo for a starting point. Be warned, the quality and focus of these and other 'glass
bead game' sites varies considerably.