"So there is nothing wrong with smarter more social people being better at play, and players who are not social or creative or intelligent being worse and losing or doing badly on their own merits."
J. Michael Matkin writes in and says:
"If I have any misgivings from this otherwise wonderful series that you are doing, it's this. At what point does adventure gaming allow me to step outside my own limitations and enable me to accomplish things that I could never do in real life?"
What a fantastic question.
My response is below.
I hesitate to reply to your comment, because I am absolutely certain you will not like the answer.
In an adventure game you can step outside of your limitations and slay princesses, rescue dragons, and subject a kingdom to your peaceful or terrifying rule.
Just because it is possible to do these things does not mean that you are entitled to get to do them.
It is a game, and it is one you can lose. What makes it worth playing and worth winning is that you can fail.
If you can't fail, if you just get the game handed to you on a silver platter, if there is no challenge, if there is no game to speak of, then it is just one person telling another how cool what they just thought of is. It is social masturbation. Affirmations.
Though that may feel good temporarily, it pales in comparison to actual victory where the possibilities for failure are real and the consequences are dire.
There when you succeed, you know you have accomplished a thing of worth. A thing that was accomplished because you were able to accomplish it, and another man might have failed.
This is why not fudging is important. This is why agency and player freedom matter. Because anything else removes any meaning from your victory.