Gaffer
 member, 1764 posts
 Ocoee FL
 45 yrs of RPGs
Sun 4 Dec 2022
at 01:00
Reactive Freeform
Iíd like to know how reactive freeform differs from plain freeform.
donsr
 member, 2730 posts
Sun 4 Dec 2022
at 01:12
Reactive Freeform
without havign a clue of  ever hearign of this, I'm going to  say..

 Re active  would tell me that the GM  and  has  NPCs, and of course   other PCs  whom you play off.

 regular  fee form  is 'do anything you want'

 My games  ,i suppose, are reactive, as  i keep the flow going, but there are   things to do  and stuff that pop up? so i call it  'semi-freeform'
facemaker329
 member, 7426 posts
 Gaming for over 40
 years, and counting!
Sun 4 Dec 2022
at 06:21
Reactive Freeform
In reply to Gaffer (msg # 1):

I've never even heard of the term before, and it seems like one of those gaming terms that may have different meaning to different people.  For instance, what donsr is describing sounds like what I consider 'guided freeform', which would (I assume) be another category altogether.
bazhsw
 member, 66 posts
Sun 4 Dec 2022
at 08:21
Reactive Freeform
I am not aware of the term but I have interpreted it as a freeform environment where the GM creates set pieces or situations for the PC's to respond to in a defined setting.  I see this as different to guided freeform where there is an overarching plot which the GM guides the PC's through, so more like a traditional rpg but with no mechanics.  Plain freeform is where there is a sandbox setting but the players have full scope over the generation of their story.

In practical terms 'reactive' freeform is used in sandbox games when the players run out of steam or the GM needs a reset.

Sandbox freeform:  All the PCs are incarcerated or work in a prison

Reactive freeform:  The PCs are discovered with a dead body in a cell as the alarms ring

Guided freeform:  The PCs have been framed for a murder and need to find out who did it and why, but first they must escape the prison

Of course I have made all the above up but it makes sense to me :)
ladysharlyne
 subscriber, 3518 posts
 Member before Oct 2005
 Creative Writing ROCKS!!
Sun 4 Dec 2022
at 15:53
Reactive Freeform
My games are reactive freeform, yes it is a term for a type of freeform just like Sandbox etc etc etc.  In my games it means that there is NO narrations.  There are baseline stories and subplots but it is far from scripted.  I don't tell players what to do, I might suggest something for them if they are stumped.  But the players play according to what those around them are saying or how they are acting.  Much like in real life you 'react' to what is happening around you.  I play characters that lead in a certain direction of the storyline but it is the 'reactions' of the other characters that I have no clue what they are going to do and it may go in a completely different direction than I thought it would but my characters 'react' to what they see and hear around them just like any other characters do.
Gaffer
 member, 1765 posts
 Ocoee FL
 45 yrs of RPGs
Sun 4 Dec 2022
at 23:34
Reactive Freeform
Thanks, all.

Itís a term Iíve been seeing increasingly in Wanted-Players lately and didnít recall seeing until a few months ago.
facemaker329
 member, 7427 posts
 Gaming for over 40
 years, and counting!
Mon 5 Dec 2022
at 04:20
Reactive Freeform
In reply to ladysharlyne (msg # 5):

I guess I've had an embarrassing wealth in GMs throughout my gaming career, as almost all of the GMs I've played with since I graduated high school tended to run their games like that, even if they were system-based (if it was a prewritten module and we decided to go off the rails, they'd make something up, which may or may not have brought us back to the story but was never guaranteed to...)

Guess that would explain why I never heard the term before.  To me, that 'reactive' style is just being a good GM, and we never needed to apply a further label to it...

But given the massive variety of players and playing styles out there, I can see where there would be a need to specify it.
ladysharlyne
 subscriber, 3522 posts
 Member before Oct 2005
 Creative Writing ROCKS!!
Mon 5 Dec 2022
at 11:21
Reactive Freeform
Well look how many years Iíve been running Freeform games here.  It was only a couple of years ago a few players coined the term in their RTJs.  I thought to myself, hey that sums it up for me.  I like it.  I use it.  Any GM can choose how to describe their games.  Any GM can choose how to run their games.  I donít narrate much and donít storytell.  I create the main plots and its character led.  Its just my take on how I wish to run my games.  Everyone GM is different or this would be a sad gaming world wouldnít it be?

Ahh thereís another term.  Character led?

This message was last edited by the user at 11:26, Mon 05 Dec 2022.

Hunter
 member, 1870 posts
 Captain Oblivious!
 Lurker
Mon 5 Dec 2022
at 22:55
Reactive Freeform
I would expect that most roleplay falls into the reactive category.