A proposed setting/concept and randomness mechanics similar to those used in RPGs.
|Welcome to the Dreamscape, where just about any sort of storyline can be run. You are a Meddler, a sort of near immortal outsider who is learning or has mastered the ABCs of influencing 5 elements of a play, and has the ability to add or subtract some items in play.
A= alter, B= boss, C= comprehend; the elements are cast, props, scenery, special FX, and plot. These are in addition to any skills and abilities appropriate to the Meddler's self-concept and background. The Meddler may visit the Dreamscape and become entangled in one or more storyline plots as well.
In the English language there are comparisons such as least, lesser, less, average, some, more, most; smallest, smaller, small, normal, big, bigger, biggest; great, greater, greatest; and worst, worse, bad, okay, good, better, best. I propose that characters, when using comparable qualities, somewhat conform to the conventions, and results also to the worst-okay-best scale, with two additional levels or rungs, namely catastrophic and legendary, at the lowest and highest ends, respectively.
When using scale/ladder statistics, characters are not compared to things outside of sensible application-- for instance, a whale would have different strength measurement and abilities than a mouse, so the above scales wouldn't make much sense. The world's strongest mouse may well still be weaker than the weakest whale, but the whale does not exactly move on land as well as a mouse. The comparable qualities conforming to such scales, however, ought to be based around something resembling a normal curve to make sense, and unless otherwise noted, qualities will default to average, normal, or okay. Whatsoever is not applicable need not be noted.
Qualities and results deriving from these comparable qualities under most circumstances would be what one expects, but to add randomness simulating a normal curve consider the results of three rolled six- sided dice (3d6). For random statistics, 3= catastrophic, 4-5= worst, 6-7=worse, 8-9=bad, 10-11= okay, 12-13=good, 14-15=better, 16-17=best, and 18=legendary. For results, say, a better shot typically performs as a better shot, but on a 17 to 18, it goes to best shot and rolls again to see if legendary, or if rolls a 3 to 4, drops down to merely a good shot and rolls again to see if it continues dropping. There is nothing considered above legendary nor below catastrophic. In case of outside influences, we may borrow from Paul Elliot's concept of a Wonky Ladder such that if the influence hinders may drop results on 3 to 6, or if improving chances may move results up on 15 to 18.
My purpose here is to give people ideas and have them use them. The setting is a commonplace concept, the Meddlers my interpretation of characters often played (in modified form) in role playing games, particularly those that are exclusive to the game master or referee, while the mechanics are a work in progress intended to appeal to those preferring simplicity and utility.