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Difference Between Requirements and Options?

Posted: Dec 26, 2013 4:09 pm
by Geoff1975

Ugh. This has been on my mind. I want to better understand the distinction between Requirements and Optionlock.

Sampling the podcasts and story forms, I see a Goal. I see Options being a short list of paths or necessary things to be finished to achieve that Goal. The Bucket List is a literal example of an Optionlock. They must cross these items off on the list in order to finish the entire Bucket List. Other times, it's "only so many people" can be the murderer before one solves the crime.

How is that different from Requirements necessary to achieve the goal? I guess the options are basically a way of limiting the ways/opportunities to fulfill the Requirements. Hmm. Then take Ghostbusters. What was given as an option lock in the DUG podcast sounds like Requirements as well.

Re: Difference Between Requirements and Options?

Posted: Dec 26, 2013 4:34 pm
by Geoff1975
Looking through the comprehensive story forms on, I get some sense of a difference. Perhaps while the options are purely various avenues to go, the requirements are conditions set up for the goal to be achieved. Example: A house must be sold (goal). There are newspaper ads, personal contacts, and companies which can sell the home (options). The house must be partially repaired after a flood (precondition). The bank transactions have to be set up (Requirement?). Again, still foggy about Requirements.

Re: Difference Between Requirements and Options?

Posted: Dec 28, 2013 1:02 am
by kintelary
I would like to think through it.

Story Goal: Selling a House (Doing)
Requirements: Things obtained in order to sell the house (Obtaining? Dynamic Pair of Doing)
Option-Lock: What produces the tension in the story? Running out of time or running out of options? The Bucket List made me feel as if things needed to be done before time ran out to do them. If this is true, then the list was a set of story requirements to reach the goal of crossing all of them off. If I remember correctly, the tension came from a time-limit and the story ended feeling good about successfully crossing off at the end (can't remember the details though) and this would mean it was not an Option-Lock story. But I don't mind being corrected. ;)

The Story Goal: Doing
The Story Requirements: Obtaining
So, the requirements are related to obtaining things to reach the story Goal of doing something.
Limit: Option-Lock. They are not forced by a time limit to face the climax of the story, but are forced by being out of options and must face the climax of the story.

If it were a time-lock story, then it would feel totally different. They might be able to put in all the same things, but add in the factor of there being a specific time limit and that creates the tension in the story, the requirements could stay the same... the things they have to obtain in order to do the thing that is coming when time runs out.

Just my thoughts, thanks. :)