So, inspired by Jason Morningstar's comment on the suicide thread
, I've been thinking about self-sacrifice (not suicide) as a game element. Not necessarily a new mechanic or anything, but just musing about the concept in general. That lead me in some potentially-neat directions.
First, I thought about the basic sense of "self-sacrifice:" You're hurt or killed in order to help someone else out. But, then I started thinking about some other ways of thinking that, and I came up with this matrix while walking home yesterday [Edited for clarity: which is only about the results of self-sacrifice]:
|Helper is harmed||Helper comes out unscatched|
|Action is helpful||Typically what we thing about "self-sacrifice"||Moments where the Helper is lucky|
|Action is unhelpful||Tragic futility of action, though the Helper isn't around to experience it||The same futility, only able to be experienced in full by the Helper|
But then I chewed on how that might not match intent
, and here's where segments of this could match up with truly suicidal actions. Here's a matrix of intent:
|Helper wants to survive||Helper is apathetic about survival||Helper wants to be harmed|
|Helper wants helpfulness to succeed||The standard intent most folks have when they want to accomplish something||This is a "typical" zone of self-sacrifice, though it can drift into "wants to survive, but knows it won't happen" territory.||The Helper embraces self-destruction for a positive goal|
|Helper does not care about helpfulness||Here's here the Helper might actually not be trying to help someone else, but might end up doing so anyway.||Nearly true apathy, maybe? It's hard to see this as action, but it could be deliberate non-action, like deciding to stop running and let yourself be bait, maybe buying someone else time. *shrug* That could get into the next category.||Here's where the ugly side of self-destruction rears its head, where the goal is to be harmed or killed for its own "reward." (And that's where suicide comes in.)|
I don't know if this is helpful or strikes thoughts with others or if I'm off-base with this, but I figured I'd share it. For me, the interesting parts start when you map various intentions to various results.
What do ya'll think?