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Postures and gestures that convey gameplay information that can be performed while roleplaying.

Players of Live Action Roleplaying Games may need to communicate with each other about issues related to the game state. Meta-Postures is a way of being able to do this while continuing to roleplay by letting certain postures or gestures have pre-agreed meanings.


Meta-Postures are used in Live Action Roleplaying Games. One example of such a posture is that of holding your arms crossed over your chest which in the Mind's Eye Theatre rules show that the vampire you are playing is obfuscated. Another example can be found in the Avatar System where players make a hand symbol to indicate that a discussion is taking place outside the game[1].

Using the pattern

The design of Meta-Postures consist of selecting which information should be possible to exchange through Non-Diegetic Communication and selecting gestures or postures. The latter requires consideration regarding how easy they are to learn, how distinct they are from each other, how well they fit in with Physical Enactment players are likely to be doing, and how noticeable they are (which is a balance between being easy to detect and breaking Diegetic Consistency).

Interface Aspects

Being a pattern of how players can signal each other through postures and gestures, Meta-Postures is a Information Pattern.


Meta-Postures is one subgroup to Meta-Techniques. Another, Substitute Actions, work against Meta-Postures regarding how to solve the same design problems. The pattern limits Physical Enactment somewhat since players may not have a full range of postures and gestures available while presenting a Meta-Posture.

While Meta-Postures can support Diegetic Consistency by making some Non-Diegetic Communication more discrete, it may also increase the amount of Non-Diegetic Communication which can counteract its purpose.


Can Instantiate

Diegetic Consistency, Meta-Techniques

Can Modulate

Physical Enactment, Non-Diegetic Communication

Can Be Instantiated By


Can Be Modulated By


Possible Closure Effects


Potentially Conflicting With

Diegetic Consistency, Non-Diegetic Communication, Substitute Actions


New pattern created in this wiki.


  1. Stark, L. 2012. Leaving Mundania - Inside the Transformative World of Live Action Role-playing Games, p. 12. Chicago Review Press.