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One issue which people often bring up is that most players are allergic to loss of agency, and captivity is a loss of agency. People thinking about games inspired by pulp fiction and silly action films like James Bond have thoughts on how to work around this, but trust between players and GM is the most important. Its also good to make sure that in the rules, running away is a viable option.
In many forms of D&D, fighting is the core activity, so people writing scenarios need to keep providing it and it can’t be too risky or repetitive. A way around that is to make the campaign about something else, like solving a mystery, driving out the hated ruler or terrible invaders, or freeing the Old Gods from their chains (and again, picking a rules set which make things other than fighting fun).
The social / asocial violence model is also useful. Many games are about asocial violence, but they also want to be about fair fights (unless its adventurers vs. Tucker’s Kobolds). That is a hard circle to square, because muggers or highwaymen rarely pick the group of 4-6 ablebodied people bristling with weapons. And many players want to be wandering heroes not enmeshed in a network of family relationships, guild memberships, childhood rivalries, and all the other things which affected many of these fights in 15th and 16th century Europe. A wolf taking a deer (asocial violence) does not behave like a wolf showing a strange wolf that he is bigger and stronger (social violence). I don’t have such good answers to this.
- This reply was modified 8 months ago by Philologus.