--> The Manifest of the Turku School

Foreword 2000
Foreword 2001

The Manifest
Chapter I
Chapter II
Chapter III
Chapter IV
Chapter V
Chapter VI

Vow of Chastity


Role-playing as art

Art can be broadly defined to be use of a medium with precision and individuality (which is creativity combined with personality). Thus it is possible to create art, as well as pointless entertainment, with RPGs. When creating a game it is important to know what you want to say with the game, and how it differs from other games. If you’re having hard time finding the answer, you should think again if you really should organize the game at all. If you want to tell a story, don’t attempt to tell it as a role-playing game (and definitely not as a LARP); think about other easily accessible mediums, like short stories instead.

Art is a very delicate thing, and certainly not all role-playing games should be classified as such. Not all even want to be! Most art today is story-telling in one form or another. But often the art is not in the story itself, but the way it is told. And although RPGs have no actual plot, the way that the many personal experiences are taken, is, in a way, up to the GM. In effect, although the content can not be predetermined, the form can be. And as the form affects the content (in the same way that the content would in active mediums also affect the form), this gives the GM a way of guiding the experience of the players. That is the GM’s art.

Eläytyjist role-playing is the best currently existing method for creating experiences and emotions, and allow you to see things from a truly personal point of view. Although this, like television, is often used as a substitute for life or to allow some people to have any feelings at all, it can be much more. It can give great, subjective insight into difficult topics - and allow you to see things from different points of view. In this sense, role-playing can be called an art.

On the other hand, simulationist role-playing is the best currently existing method to simulate the actions of a small society in diverse situations. This can be, for instance, used as a tool for experimenting with different social models. I myself intend to create a working Utopia and then test it with LARPs and fix it where it didn't work. In this sense, role-playing can be called a (method of) science.