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Reducing Performance Time Cycles

During the time I've been experimenting with the performance system, something that has been hard for me to wrestle with is timing and describing the action going on on stage. Mostly this deals with how a performance paragraph "feels" in reading it when representing an entire minute of content.

When it comes down to it, sometimes a performance is based upon how it looks on the screen, and the amount of information the audience is given. A gigantic parabomb detailing everything from how each chord sounds might present a miserable slog of reading, where a three line performance leaves an audience wanting more in terms of description because the next line of the song is an entire minute away and that is a LONG time in awkward silence.

This becomes especially problematic when it comes to singing though, as the spoken word tends to take up a LOT of text within the song and the screen. An entire minute of quickly spitting rhymes is going to be a gigantic wall of text without even getting into how awesome the actual musicality is.

To me, a good performance act (of any kind) is one that the paragraph feels "meaty", and I've found that around thirty seconds of focusing both on musicality and lyrics is a good size for a .pose paragraph, whereas I point out above when trying to portray an entire minute of a song they tend to start to become a bit bloated and heavy. Great if you're doing a slow and heavy song, not so great when you're trying to speed metal.

Perhaps it is just my skill at wordsmithing, but I think dropping the timing cycles down to thirty seconds would provide for a better concert experience, as it will allow the musician to have better control over the flow of their music. Also, keeping up the flow of music information might help cut down on IC cross chatter conversations as a higher pace of music emotes will have more focus as opposed to one pose every minute that everyone reads quickly and goes back to their conversation as if there wasn't a 110 decibel power metal shred fest going on in the same room.

Any thoughts or advice from musical acts in presenting a "cleaner" sound through text manipulation?

In populated events where there is a performance being put on display with the players in the audience posing in between the performance, it is easy for me to lose track of what is going on. I feel like reducing the cycle would make performances a little shorter and less time-consuming, especially when there are multiple line-ups.

It would also allow me (this is a personal opinion because I have ADHD) as a player to keep track of the performance itself a lot more efficiently than I am able to now.

Oh, also I think improving should allow you to recover a little faster. You are reacting to the crowd. You're jamming out with those corpies dancing left and right, crooning to the girl in the second row, screaming from being on fire from the molotov. To me these are supposed to be short and quick snippets of action of reaction instead of bringing the entire show to a grinding halt for an entire minute.
I would love it if the cooldown time between performance poses was reduced in some way. It feels extremely long to me. I'm honestly not even sure why there is a significant cooldown timer on this. Performances had been done since the inception of the game using poses and the like without the need for timers and I rarely heard any massive complaints regarding performances during all that time. I feel it gave people more freedom to set tone, pace, and just be more creative in general.

Still, if a cooldown is deemed necessary, I'd prefer it to be set at the lowest acceptable level to maximize player agency.

I am not personally worried if the one minute in game gets enough musical/lyrical/action content as one would get IRL. While Sindomeis generally a real time game, the nature of how the game works just means some things happen slower or faster than they would IRL and that's okay with me as we these thing generally apply equally to everyone. We generally all experience the same time dilatations.

Player engagement is more important to me than trying to make sure all in game time frames match IRL equivalents. I personally love Sindome's more short form posing/emoting - even with performances. I feel like they keep me more engaged. The performance timer being so long honestly makes me as a player much less interested in performances and drops the enjoyment I personally experience.

I enjoy the longer performance cycles because they give more time for players in the crowd to react whether dancing/booing/etc, and also provided a level of balance to the notable stat boost such things provide.
I've not touched the performance system since it was added but I tend to agree that 1 minute intervals is tuned to either the busiest venues or the chunkiest paragraphs. Before the new system came in I felt the best performances had 'keyframes' of more descriptive paragraphs for the meat and then were peppered with lighter poses, spoofs and tos to keep the audience engaged without too much spacing.

An option for slow or fast performances might make sense, though I suppose cannot players also pose normally in between their performance script? Though that would probably be pretty complex to manage...

In either case I do agree in a quieter room that 1 minute gaps would, for me (speedy roleplayer that I am), start to feel inactive.

The shortest pre-scripted performance is 8 lines, for a total of 8 minutes for a performance. If you have several performances back-to-back it eats up a great deal more time, especially if you emote between.

While you CAN emote/spoof/whatever between each performance emote, I think halving the wait to 30 seconds would be better, rather than turning each song into a Pink Floyd number.

I agree that feels very long to me when you're stacking performances.

I don't know how the scripting for performances is set up, but maybe if there was a 30 second default but then pose slots could have the option of a blank entry so players could choose to space out their actions where it would make for a better experience?

To script a performance you enter in some pre-written poses into an editor in the order you want them. Then when it comes to performance time you can just =next to continue the performance along. It's handy for not needing to reference outside documents.
I like the cooldowns because, like ReeferMadness said, it gives people a moment to react and all, but I do think that most people will rely on socials and such for that and let a performer perform, in my experience.

Having used the system a few times, I think one minute feels like an eternity between poses for your performance, especially if you're not aware of it beforehand and maybe wrote out too many poses instead of consolidating it all. Thirty seconds would probably feel just right.

I think 30 seconds is good, because then you get 4 minute performances, which for songs is a little over the real-world standard, but a much better alternative.
Hmm. Would there be some downside to letting players freely =next through their performance at their rate of preference, I wonder? That would allow for more various types of performances as well, compared to the 'live music' paragraph intervals.

That's how it worked under the old way of players just posting poses when they felt it was appropriate, and I don't remember there ever being obvious issues there.

Reefer brings up a good point regarding stat bonuses. But I'd rather just record the timestamps of the last such bonuses and limit it to no more than X bonuses per X time. This would allow performers to perform at a rate they see fit without worrying about someone abusing the system for stat bonuses.

While I agree that the stat bonuses from hearing a really good performance are there, I don't think a single person would notice any difference in the stats/skills unless there was a green + sign floating next to it on their sheet.

I mean, I believe the two beers I have during a performance has more of an affect on my stats than how great that four minute drum solo was.

Fatigue is a different story though.

Yeah I actually reported a performance effect as a @bug because it seemed so superficial that I hadn't even realized it was an intended stat bonus. I feel like the stats effects could be fully thrown out before acting as limiter to improvements in the performance system, since it really should be a system that caters to creatives and their preferences about all else as they are lifeblood elements of the game in many ways.
I love the idea of the performance timer being around 30 seconds instead of a full minute. From my memory of past performances, I agree that they can feel long (especially if an artist has multiple songs to perform!) and I don't think players spectating will emote or react any less if those songs were shorter overall.
So just circling back a bit in the discussion: If you can =next to jump to the next pose in a composition, does that not let someone time out their performance how they want it to be?
There is a cooldown on using =next, which is what is being discussed. It will stop you for, I believe, a full minute before you move on to the next pose.
Got it. In that case there was 20 years of players self-moderating their performance tempos and it was never once a problem that I ever saw, and things like synchronized group performances and recording performances in production beg for fine controlled timing on the players' part rather than mandating a metronome.

Forcing a cooldown on performance poses feels like an unnecessarily complex gameified downside for something that didn't need changing and, for me at least, it might be best left to players to dictate any rate of control through =next they want.
Refer back to Reefer's post about the boosted benefits of listening to a performance. It's possible it was coded to need the time as it works right now so someone couldn't just spam =next X amount of times in thirty seconds to put a buff on someone that would've otherwise taken 10+ minutes.
Likely true but it feels very D&D and out of place to me to have Bards be passing out group buffs in Sindome, where fantasy RPG features have typically been eschewed by the overall design and prioritization on roleplay over stat mechanics.

You'll have to forgiven me because I'm a bit late to the party on this one as I hadn't even noticed there was a new performance system until it was two years old, but it feels almost like a slight regression in creative expression in exchange for programmatic roleplay.

Though if creatives did love the group buffs mechanic and wanted to preserve that, I wonder if it wouldn't be a compromise to just have a flat buff given by any pose in the performance that decays out over time on its own. Then there would be no advantage or disadvantage to the rate of a performance and it could be left for players to choose how they want to control it with a free use of =next.
I play a performer-esque character and don't usually post on the BGBB but I figured I should chip in with some personal pros and cons when it comes to the performance system.

Crowd reactions rule and being able to save your performance via in-game ways instead of having to copy paste out of a word processor makes it much easier to keep track of what's going on. Superb work!

The performance commands ONLY work with poses, you can't use possessive emotes (=::'s guitar screams) and you cannot use spoofs either (=!Gusts of wind blows %N's hair out of %p eyes as %s plays).

Sometimes (enough to be a problem) the performance command straight up eats quoted dialogue and I've troubleshot it some but due to the 1 minute timer it takes ages to do so. For example <=.belt out in song, "I'm-singing-a-song!"> will show up as . If you add any more posing after the dialogue it will show up by the remaining pose will show as raw input for everyone including yourself

The 1 minute timer. If I wish to improvise and engage with the crowd between composed poses, it'll add a whole minute to the performance no matter if it's just throwing a bottle back or flashing an engaging smile at someone. If you're troubleshooting and 'rehearsing' by yourself, instead of blowing through the composition it can take between 20-40 minutes of just waiting for the timer while in a cube, just because you're afraid the dialogues will get eaten.

And finally the buff. I hadn't even noticed it was a thing because it's so negligible, so if that's what's keeping the 1 minute timer in place I see no reason to keep it around at all.
For some reason the other examples in my paragraph about the dialogue being eaten, the example were eaten by the BGBB which was ironic and funny.

Here is how it will show up, missing dialogue: You belt out in song,

Here is what happens if you add more onto the pose: You belt out into song, "I'm-singing-a-song!" I .smile out at the crowd.
Regarding the stat bonuses, I would also rather see them go in favor of greater player control and creativity if that was necessary. I very much love the crowd reactions. This helped a long standing problem in the game where neither the audience or the performer really knew how good they were supposed to be. The pacing of performances, however, was never a problem that needed solving in my opnion.

But I don't think the cooldown is the only possible mechanism available for moderating stat bonuses. For example, when it's time to give out a stat bonus, the verb can check each player it would affect for the time they last received such a bonus. It it was less than XX time ago, they do not get the bonus. Otherwise they get the bonus and the last performance bonus received timestamp is updated on the character. Basically how 'inspect' handles things.

I am not saying it's the only solution, just one option. And, for all i now, it's already implemented. It's possible that the cooldowns aran't even a way of moderating stat bonuses but implemented for another reason and we just assume that's why they were put in. Just throwing that out there as it's easy for players to draw the wrong conclusions based on our limited views.

I do agree that the inability to use emotes and spoofs with the system is tough. I used them heavily in the few performances I did before the system was implemented. If there were some way to save each section of a performance as a pose, spoof or emote that would be awesome. I would love to hear how staff feels about players using the existing system creatively though.

For example:

I make a song with a chorus played/sung twice with three versus in addition. So I create my song to have an intro, the two choruses and outro. The rest I manually spoof/pose/emote. Enough for the system to provide audience/internal feedback. I do the rest manually so I can use the extra tools Sindome provides (spoof/emote) and to give me a bit more control over pacing. Would this be acceptable? How much of a performance has to use the tool to be enough? Three pieces? Begningish, middlish and endish?

What about having the performance device flag the PC as being in performance mode when they start the performance? Then every say, pose, emote and spoof the PC makes, if the PC is in performance mode, feeds into the system to generate audience/internal feedback. When the PC ends the performance or changes rooms they are taken out of performance mode.

Sorry for the long ramble. I just wanted throw out some ideas on how some of the suggestions might be implemented!