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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Yesterday, 11:26 AM
    One of the core problems, IMHO, is that even if you expanded the Inspiration Bonds system, it would still be a mostly secondary to the core game. As such, the amount of effort that you need to put in to making Inspiration Bonds work as a more critical player-facing world-building mechanic may not be worth the gains. You could definitely use Inspiration Bonds to world-build, and it may be...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Yesterday, 12:28 AM
    This, this, a THOUSAND TIMES this.
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 23rd May, 2018, 05:11 PM
    Not really. D&D 5e's inspiration mechanic feels like a half-baked afterthought vomited last minute onto the game. As you say below, this is a fundamental mechanic of Fate's game play. It has bite. It is an integral part of the character. It is in the forefront and not an out-of-sight, out-of-mind background. In regards to "what about 5E inspiration?," you may enjoy reading Angry DM's article...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 23rd May, 2018, 12:10 PM
    Essentially yes, but I also regard the how as an important part of that process.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 22nd May, 2018, 10:07 PM
    Fair enough. I have to admit though, I find it a bit difficult to believe that Morrus has never seen 2pp used as a term on the boards. I have. But, hey, it's not really that big of an issue to be honest. Again, there are so few licensed publishers out there that it's not really a problem. As far as the original question goes, I'm actually frankly confused why someone would think that...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 22nd May, 2018, 04:22 PM
    Because "tier" means "animal." :p
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 22nd May, 2018, 04:07 PM
    Since we are discussing character creation and worldbuilding, I will express one of the reasons my players and I have enjoyed Fate: character creation often explicitly builds the setting with player-made character/plot/setting hooks. When I say that "character creation builds the setting," I do not mean simply any implicit setting that results from the player choosing preexisting class, race,...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 22nd May, 2018, 02:46 PM
    I share this reservation myself about homebrew settings. I cannot answer the OP's question. Settings are nice in that they provided "knowns" for players. The play expectations are often somewhat clear. There are some settings that I enjoy and gladly play (e.g., Eberron), and there are others that I would not touch with a 5 meter pole (e.g., Forgotten Realms, Dragonlance). However, there are...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 22nd May, 2018, 02:41 PM
    No, but, you are advocating, from what I can see, a much more DM driven game than I prefer. I have zero problem with a DM who comes to the table with virtually nothing, asks the players to create a group and then builds the campaign based on the feedback from the players. IOW, the FATE approach. I mean, heck, I want to use Dawn of Worlds for the next campaign I run. Sit down for a session...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 22nd May, 2018, 02:37 PM
    Huh, funny, that's only post 62 for me. Wonder who's got me blocked. Haven't pissed anyone off recently that I know of. :D But, yeah, it's so much easier, AFAIC, to simply alter my setting to make the players happy rather than try to force my setting on the players. Again, I have to wonder if it's not because of the number of DM's in my group. Since at any given time, we could have a new...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 22nd May, 2018, 02:35 PM
    Going back to the original topic, I would note that some of the biggest success with 3pp have been those products that exist in connection to D&D Streamers and YouTubers Video Bloggers. These products are essentially being marketed by online personalities. What's interesting, IMHO, is not necessarily how this shift affects 3pp for D&D, but how the growing recognition that "streaming sells"...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 22nd May, 2018, 02:27 PM
    But, that's not how culling works. You don't cull once and then walk away. You cull periodically. That's what hunting seasons in North America actually are. There's a reason that we have those seasons and the limitations on the number of animals killed. The notion that you can cull once and walk away is completely irrational. And, frankly, wars have never really reduced populations. At...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 22nd May, 2018, 02:08 PM
    Or, conversely, adding firearms might make the player not enjoy the game as much, and, since, for me, the player's enjoyment is the most important thing, leaving an idea on the cutting room floor is always the first choice I'd make. My setting is never, ever more important than the players at the table.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 22nd May, 2018, 07:12 AM
    I dunno. "I'm going to wipe out half the population of the universe to save it" isn't exactly the most rational of ideas. Do we really need to be explicitly told that Thanos isn't running on all eight cylinders? Then again, apparently so since people have actually argued that this idea might actually have any merit. :uhoh:
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 22nd May, 2018, 07:10 AM
    We who happyhermit? I've seen second party publishers referred to quite a number of times, particularly in 3e discussions where you had different "tiers" of publishers - those that were using OGL and those that weren't. How would you describe Paizo's publishing Dungeon and Dragon, if not a second party publisher? Or the Dragonlance stuff that was published during 3e which was certainly not...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 22nd May, 2018, 04:30 AM
    There are several RPG's out there that would disagree with you. FATE, for example, certainly builds the campaign and the world based on character generation. You, as the person running the game, aren't expected to come to the table with a campaign setting. And there are several other games in a similar vein. AFAIC, player investment is far, far more important that whoever happens to be...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 21st May, 2018, 11:34 PM
    Umm, the culling model doesn't work in this case because you never just cull once. You have to cull repeatedly, over time, every time that the population needs to be controlled. There's no sense that Thanos is going to wipe out half the universe every fifty years or so just to make sure that things stay in balance.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 21st May, 2018, 11:08 PM
    Umm, no? Colloquial or not, it is still pretty commonly understood that first, second or third party publishers don't refer to consumers. It's not wrong since, well, that's what is understood by everyone who uses the terms. That's how English (or any language for that matter) works. So, yes, it is perfectly understandable by anyone who isn't simply playing silly buggers semantic games that...
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  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Monday, 21st May, 2018, 08:46 PM
    You mean, like they did with Spelljammer way, way back in the late 80's/90's? Hmmmmmm....
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  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Monday, 21st May, 2018, 08:32 PM
    My goodness...that's a great deal of hyperbole in there. There is a simple solution to your (probably unjustified) complaint.... If you don't like it, don't use it! It's amazing how D&D offers you the flexibility to make a simple adjustment if you don't like how something works. Even better, it's baked into the rules! Like, really!!! Mind=blown!!! I don't see a lot of other people in...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 21st May, 2018, 03:05 PM
    How are we discussing contract law though? No one is entering into a contract. Well, I suppose, since using the OGL is a thing, you could make the argument that it's a contract law issue, but, the colloquial use is certainly well established in gaming. Paizo, when it produced Dungeon and Dragon magazines, were typically referred to as a second party publisher since they were under direct...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 20th May, 2018, 09:51 AM
    As a player of a Forge Priest, I failed two last session. It happens and it happens pretty frequently. It's not like clerics are proficient in Con saves and a 14 Con means that I fail any concentration check at least 40% of the time. And, watching the other PC's in our games, I've noticed that our wizard types (whether sorc or wizard) tend to be pretty blaster heavy, so, concentration...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 20th May, 2018, 09:45 AM
    What do you base that on? That most people don't finish the AP's, I mean. Personal experience or something else? Because, for us, we do finish off the AP's that we start, by and large. We did Ravenloft (although the campaign crashed because of Real Life stuff getting in the way just at the end of it :( ), we're doing the Giants one right now and it's going pretty swimmingly. And, we've done...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 19th May, 2018, 07:35 AM
    Anyone who plays 5e and then appeals to rules as written has failed to actually read the manual. It's pretty clearly stated that the DM is in charge here. IOW, this is a player problem, not a problem with the books. OTOH, we can only hope that you're right and world building dies off. :D (I kid, I kid. :D)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 19th May, 2018, 07:28 AM
    Let's also not forget that much of the movie is told from Thanos' perspective. So, of course he's not going to call himself "mad". To him, he's perfectly rational and his solution is also perfectly rational.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 19th May, 2018, 02:34 AM
    And yet, and yet, despite these inconsistencies, those TV shows remain incredibly popular and people keep watching them. IOW, other than a small handful of folks, no one actually cares. It's inconsistent? So what? Most folks couldn't give a rat's petoot.
    68 replies | 1752 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 19th May, 2018, 02:20 AM
    But that hardly makes him rational. Do audiences really need someone to point at Thanos and exclaim, "You are mad, mad I say!"? Do they really need to spell it out that Thanos is crazier than a poop house rat? I mean, the whole plan is irrational, and, even the justifications for it are the flimsy rationalizations of someone whose grasp on reality is tenuous at best. I mean, follow the...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Friday, 18th May, 2018, 05:27 PM
    Note: This thread has some amazing people and some excellent game theory discussion. Party on, dudes.
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Friday, 18th May, 2018, 01:28 PM
    Ah, I see (said the blind man). My apologies. Oh, I meant that in unenforced or "flaws/troubles optional" systems, I often see players attempt to marginalize all potential weaknesses or ignore any flaws. So the roleplaying of flaws tends to be negligible and the "roleplayed" characters tend to be flat. One possible hypothesis may be rooted the system goals, rewards system, and incentives....
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Friday, 18th May, 2018, 10:08 AM
    I don't know why you are so fixated on endgame power levels when I explicitly said that is not typically what most people IME have in mind when criticizing level gating of powers. I have not met a player who wanted their character to cast Wish right out of the gate. I would say that the players generally want moderate levels of competency such that they have sufficient tools to sufficiently play...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Friday, 18th May, 2018, 09:36 AM
    I'm already well familiar with Fate, Imaro, so there is no need to lecture me on it. Maxperson and Hawkeye clarified your reading. IME with those systems, "What flaws?"
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Thursday, 17th May, 2018, 02:27 PM
    Thank you and Maxperson for your own readings. That helps. Though I understand your intent, at least presumably, I do take some issue with the bold, namely that it somewhat contradicts the rest of your statements. System and mechanics will inherently place limitations on how a player can play such that the idea that one system permits players to play their character "however they want" while...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Thursday, 17th May, 2018, 02:01 PM
    That is true enough, but my understanding of this hypothetical person in this scenario is that the reason that Fate rubs them the wrong way is because of how those troubles/compels run counter to the experiences they want for their character. But again that seems counterintuitive to how Fate works given how troubles are self-selected by the player for their character. In other words, we may ask,...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Thursday, 17th May, 2018, 12:38 PM
    I can't give you particular decisions, but I can give you tendencies. I enjoy elves as "fey" or "fey-kin." And also gnomes would fall in this category as well. I prefer having "half-orcs" as not half-anything but simply another variety of orc. I occasionally have the "half-human" assumption stemming from human racism explaining how orcs could be civilized. I like having halflings not...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Thursday, 17th May, 2018, 09:45 AM
    I do mostly agree with your summation. My point of contention is how the Troubles/Compels are being characterized as hurdles for play. Troubles are self-selected to engender the play experiences the player wants for their character. So it seems unintuitive for how Fate works to say that Troubles are preventing a player from playing their character as they envision them. Why should a player be...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 16th May, 2018, 09:02 PM
    Not sure if I agree here. If you are having these sort of compels in Fate, then it's because you as a player have selected these troubles as things you want to experience for your character. Plus, you have Fate points that allow you to resist these compels. But Fate wants to create interesting stories and not stories where everyone knows everything, makes every dramatically appropriate response,...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 16th May, 2018, 03:44 PM
    My mind raced to how this would be done in Fate. There are multiple subsystems and rule variations available in Fate, but I could see that "Webslingers" may be its own aspect as part of a powers package (see Venture City), but with "All Out of Web" as a trouble, such that the GM could potentially compel the character to be "out" of webslinging fluid or needing to refill in order to heighten the...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 16th May, 2018, 03:40 PM
    LotR also more accurately likely has a magical fatigue system (or even a magical skills one) rather than a Vancian spells per day one, so I'm not sure if this satirical comparison is apt. If one sought to simulate magic in Middle Earth, D&D's magic system would probably be one of the last systems I would consider. That said, the issue of "blowing his load" likely depends on the cognitive...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 16th May, 2018, 11:28 AM
    It's not as if "cross-class balance" is even a concern in Fate anyway. I tend to agree here, and this is a concern that fellow players at my table have raised. It's entailed in "how often do I get to be cool?" That, and how leveling systems tend to gate when players can actually play their character concept. But there are systems out there that permit more out-of-the-box playing of player...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 16th May, 2018, 08:07 AM
    Based on what?
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 15th May, 2018, 08:13 PM
    If you are just going to unnecessarily insult me, Jeremy, and condescend to me about your 30+ years of gaming experiences, then it's clear that you only plan on offering the east wind for wisdom. I don't know who lobbed that cornfield up your rear, but you should have dislodged them before you decided to post your reply. But there are many other ways you could have gone about your reply before...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 15th May, 2018, 03:12 PM
    For my own sake following here, how does this current discussion on encounter design/balance connect with the overarching discussion of what worldbuilding is for? And though some of you are indeed doing this, it may also be helpful to look more broadly at how other game systems (other than iterations of D&D) have designed their encounter/day assumptions for characters.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 14th May, 2018, 11:36 PM
    Even so, you can still learn tools as a downtime activity. Which, effectively, is the same as learning skills.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 14th May, 2018, 11:33 PM
    Using your .4% idea, out of a thousand worlds, 4 have Texas vanishing. Since the MCU posits a pretty full universe with lots and lots of inhabited worlds, then this sort of rare grouping will happen and the consequences become that much worse. That's the funny thing about randomness. The more times you spin the wheel, the weirder the results you start to get.
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  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Monday, 14th May, 2018, 06:42 PM
    Margot Kidder has died... https://www.yahoo.com/entertainment/superman-actress-margot-kidder-dead-age-69-montana-170231225.html
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Monday, 14th May, 2018, 12:25 PM
    Apart from Harry.
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Monday, 14th May, 2018, 12:08 PM
    I would wait, however, for the upcoming new edition of Savage Worlds. I will likewise voice my support for Fate Accelerated. There are a lot of easy-to-turn knobs that one can turn to increase or decrease its complexity. Wearing the Cape has probably been one of the most strongly recommended Fate supers books that I have encountered. I suppose that I am thankful then that I have...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Monday, 14th May, 2018, 09:47 AM
    Advantage/Disadvantage is simple and elegant, but I find that its ubiquity in 5E becoming increasingly cumbersome and unimaginative.
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Monday, 14th May, 2018, 09:31 AM
    People "powergame" backgrounds in 5E as well in order to pick up certain skills (e.g., Perception), perks, and tool proficiencies (e.g., thieves' tools). This does seem a bit too specific, but it remains to be seen how many skills we will end up with. Knowledge/Lore skills are always tricky due to the tightrope they have to walk between breadth and depth. My own concern, however, is with...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Monday, 14th May, 2018, 09:18 AM
    Often in this thread I have found myself agreeing with you, but I don't think this is one of those times. Overall, people are not afraid of game analysis; they are afraid of being accused of "badwrongfun" or having a game style that the game theory deems "inferior." I am not opposed to descriptive game theory, but the problem is that a lot of the Ron Edwards/Forge/GNS discussion came across as...
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Monday, 14th May, 2018, 05:17 AM
    I was thinking about this thread as I was introspecting upon something related to my own play priorities: "What is the difference between a game with a baked-in premise (say Dogs in the Vineyard or My Life With Master) vs a fully GM-authored premise and attendant game?" For myself, as GM, I'd say its the following: 1 - Playing a game with a baked-in premise invariably comes with some...
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Monday, 14th May, 2018, 04:32 AM
    I agree that it is pretty hard (I'll go with extremely) for the same episode of RPGing to serve both of those priorities. Story Now and Story Before/Sim priorities + play principles and game infrastructure (the latter two serving the first) push in different (perhaps not opposite in all ways...but certainly different) directions. I'm going to extend this with another example. Let me know...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 14th May, 2018, 04:29 AM
    But, that's the thing about randomness. Sure, you might get an even distribution, but, there's no guarantee of that. It's equally possible that you get group in random choices, meaning that you might wind up wiping out everyone with any medical training, for example, simply through random chance. It really is a mad idea.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 13th May, 2018, 04:27 AM
    Realistically, for full casters, there's no feat that will come even close to bumping your casting stat. No feat will give you the bonuses to your save DC, PLUS an extra spell to use. At 8th level, you're getting up to a 4th level spell known per day. Considering, by that point, you only know 2 (or can ready 2 if you're a cleric or druid), that's a HUGE bump in versatility. No feat will come...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 12th May, 2018, 02:00 PM
    Thereís an even nastier problem as well. With half the population gone, you just massively cut the gene pool, resulting in all sorts of nasty stuff down the line. And when we cut half the populations, where is the cutoff line? Technological races? How advanced? After all, humans conquered the planet with stone axes. And probably did some spectacularly bad things to the ecosphere. So is...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 12th May, 2018, 01:55 PM
    Going back to the stone ages, my uni gaming club had a con every year. It was only a few hundred. AFAIK itís still going. But yeah, the overwhelming majority of cons are under the 1k mark.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 12th May, 2018, 04:28 AM
    Yeah, this was fun, but, now it's time to let this one die. I've made my points, you can agree or disagree as you like. To me, world building and world builders have taken over the hobby to the degree that it has driven me largely out of it. I almost never buy any products anymore because most of the products are geared almost entirely for world builders. I'm quite happy in our group...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 11th May, 2018, 10:42 PM
    Funny how all your definition jokes keep requiring the change of definitions of known words. I've posted the definition of world building, a few times now, and you've still insisted on the notion that your definition is the only possible one. Does make winning a discussion easier when you think that you can control what words mean. ------- Bedrockgames - what I would like to see is a...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 11th May, 2018, 10:33 PM
    But, in my mind, none of that is world building. That's just basic adventure design because all of that material is going to be used in the adventure. Totally agree that this is necessary and a good use of DM prep time. Note what you leave out though. No mention of the history of the area. What happened here ten years ago? Fifty? A hundred? Who, other than world builders, cares? It's...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 11th May, 2018, 10:25 PM
    Because, typically, a narrated daily log with random encounters is pretty much all that connective bits amounts to. If it was actually important, you'd take the time to actually make an adventure about it (see, for example, the Paizo remake of Isle of Dread where they actually spend three complete adventures just getting to the village on the island). But, for the most part, it's utterly...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 11th May, 2018, 10:09 PM
    I'd posit that the reason that people react so strongly to "world building is bad" is that they likely fall pretty heavily somewhere on the list I gave a few pages back and they can't handle the idea that their DMing isn't the perfect approach to gaming.
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Friday, 11th May, 2018, 06:27 PM
    Then I will leave that to Hussar to clarify, as I can only speak for my own reading of the situation in the context of the thread. But I do hope that you better understand the contextualization of my own response to you.
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Friday, 11th May, 2018, 05:59 PM
    Let's retrace our steps a bit for contextualization because this entire line of thinking is becoming absurd, and I have little desire to perpetuate that absurdity. I disagreed with Bedrockgames's assertion and kinda spiteful characterization that Hussar was expressing his opinion "as an absolute" and that "Hussar has the answer for everyone." This runs counter, IME, to how I see Hussar expressing...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Friday, 11th May, 2018, 04:51 PM
    Your reading of his statement does not exclude the fact that he has done both in the thread.
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Friday, 11th May, 2018, 04:34 PM
    In general, yes, I believe that he is expressing his own preferences here, but that these preferences also stem from his observations about the problems with how worldbuilding is frequently expressed in the hobby. Here, I read "how I think that world building is bad" along the lines of "why/how I think that worldbuilding can be problematic." His list entails pitfalls, red flags, and a hierarchy...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Friday, 11th May, 2018, 04:20 PM
    However, we are not discussing whether an orange is an apple or an apple is an orange. 'Apples' and 'oranges' are physical objects that have physical properties that we can ascertain. We are discussing what constitutes the definition for an abstract concept that pertains to fiction-making: e.g., "Mary Sue," "Anti-hero," "Second World," etc. Yes, and you and you alone misread what he quoted to...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Friday, 11th May, 2018, 03:24 PM
    One would certainly hope that you would know that before you chose to wade into it. There are multiple divergent conversations at play here though. On this point, however, I think that Hussar is clearly discussing his own preferences that he would like expressed in published materials. As to the rest of the conversations? That might be a bit much to summarize. I would say that the argument...
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  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Friday, 11th May, 2018, 02:35 PM
    I will ready an action to counter your readied action whenever you're ready to ready your readied action...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Friday, 11th May, 2018, 02:11 PM
    I also disagree with this assertion, and I believe that Imaro may have made a similar comment earlier in his summation of topic. Again, I would like to revisit the earlier analogy that I raised. I don't think fundamentally that people are reacting so strongly to "world building is bad" because of the advice, facts, or definitions, but, rather, because they are emotionally feeling that they...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Friday, 11th May, 2018, 11:15 AM
    Then this is absolutely hypocritical to expect others to do the same about their own beliefs, because the reality is that people clearly have different "basic facts about what they believe world building means." I hardly think that "some of the definitions being proposed" veer any, if at all, from "how it generally means in the hobby," and it may be your own preconceptions and biases in place...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 11th May, 2018, 06:58 AM
    Just a point about X1 Isle of Dread. One of the major elements of X1 is actually traveling to the island. That's a big part of the adventure. So, of course, you're going to need to detail out getting to the island, which means you need some sort of map (whether it's an actual map or just a timeline of events) in order to get from A to B. That's just basic setting building. But, in Tomb...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 11th May, 2018, 06:51 AM
    Ok, perhaps a point form list of how I think that world building is bad might be a good idea. I. How Worldbuilding is Bad for the DM/Table Worldbuilding takes away from time that could be spent writing the actual adventure. The more time the DM spends detailing Elven Tea Ceremonies, the less time he or she has to write an actual adventure. Some DM's become very, very attached to their...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 11th May, 2018, 06:26 AM
    And yet, I'm expected in this thread to ignore the accepted definition of world building and use the one presented by Maxperson which is far, far broader than what is typically defined as world building.
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Thursday, 10th May, 2018, 09:42 AM
    That's what I'm talking about. He offered a concession. You didn't. You haven't. You continue to dig your heels deep into the underdark regarding your own definition and sense of worldbuilding.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 10th May, 2018, 04:58 AM
    Turned that off years ago. Sorry. Can you please be more specific? If the party goes on an adventure to save the princess, and does so, is that world building or not? And, as far as defining world building as stuff I like vs stuff I don't like, no, that's never been my definition. My definition of world building is any material that is not needed by the plot. Anything that...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 10th May, 2018, 04:52 AM
    But, then Bedrockgames, why not actually make that clear? Something like, "If you run open ended, sandbox style campaigns, then world building becomes more necessary"? Instead of, "Well, world building is good" which is what I generally get replied to me over and over again. And, as far as the generally agreed upon definition goes, I suggest Wikipedia, or TV Tropes. Both have excellent...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 10th May, 2018, 04:19 AM
    Yes, it does. That's the definition of world building. If you're not explaining things in detail, excruciating or not, you are not engaging in world building. Unless it's tied to the actual adventure that's going on, why would they ever ask this? You actually have players who ask these kinds of questions out of the blue with no connection to the ongoing adventure/campaign? So,...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 10th May, 2018, 01:04 AM
    Actually, coming back to Dune for a second, because it makes for a very good example. Take one of the most basic elements of the story - the Stillsuit. Now, we know that a stillsuit recycles your water and lets you survive in the desert. Very important for the plot of the story. But, what does it look like? What color is it? Who makes it? What's it made out of? These are all basic...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 10th May, 2018, 12:44 AM
    It's interesting that you mention Dune. Because if you read the original novel - heck even the original Frank Herbert (not his son's stuff), there is surprisingly little world building. Virtually none. It's a very strongly plot based story that's heavy on character. For example, what does a Guildsman look like? I know you're probably thinking of the movies here when you envision it, but,...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Thursday, 10th May, 2018, 12:41 AM
    You keep saying this with the implicit assumption that your definition is the norm when I don't think that is necessarily true, particularly when you don't substantiate it or even acknowledge that the contextual understanding of "used by most people" clearly varies in this thread.
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 9th May, 2018, 03:17 PM
    I am self-admittedly at a loss. IME, I have simply found, however, that Ron Edwards, the Forge, and all associated terminology generally engender divisive conversations. These can be, as per Manbearcat's observation, due to differences of core gaming values, but I also think that the terminology itself has accumulated a lot of visceral connotations and negative reactions. (The terms also seem...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 9th May, 2018, 02:54 PM
    Et tu Parmandur?
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 9th May, 2018, 02:47 PM
    I also wish that we could move beyond Edwards and The Forge. Though if this is all we have, then RPG theory is in a sad sorry state.
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 9th May, 2018, 02:39 PM
    And clearly people who disagree with you don't as they are just "projecting" and going on inexperience, paint chips, and bad faith. Furthermore, if you are going to quote my comment, I would certainly appreciate if you showed signs of reading it. I did clarify that this was not all worldbuilding but "excess worldbuilding." I would prefer if you would spend less time accusing others of projecting...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 9th May, 2018, 12:47 PM
    Blackmoor 9 City of Brass 6 City State of the Invincible Overlord 10 Free City of Greyhawk 9 Sharn 6 Sigil 2
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 9th May, 2018, 12:45 PM
    I wish these sort of conversations could move beyond Ron Edwards and his terminology.
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 9th May, 2018, 12:11 PM
    Sure, but repeating that assertion that I disagree with isn't going to make me agree with it. I doubt, however, that further conversation on this point will bear ripe fruit. I would say that is also a stumbling block: a few people make an assertion for "what it generally means in the hobby" when it runs counter to the experience or understanding of others. Attempting to steamroll others by...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 9th May, 2018, 09:22 AM
    Of course Lanefan. But, again, I've always said that you need setting. That's fine. What wouldn't be needed is the last five hundred years of history of the city they were in. Or the last five thousand. Which is where world building kicks in. But, again, my point is that world building is distinct from plot and character. And, frankly, it's distinct from setting as well. It's when...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 9th May, 2018, 06:13 AM
    What is excluded then? You've included character creation, setting creation, adventure creation and probably a few other bits and bobs. What else is there? You've have a character, you have an adventure, you have a setting. That's the sum total of the entire game. What, in your view, is part of an RPG that isn't included in your definition of world building? it would be very helpful if you...
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Thursday, 24th May, 2018

  • 02:49 PM - lowkey13 mentioned Hussar in post Harassment Policies: New Allegations Show More Work To Be Done
    Sure I can imagine another reason, but Gygax wasn't some raging racist. So given the incredibly unlikely possibility that he decided to make elves with racism in mind, or the incredibly likely possibility that he didn't, I'm not going to assume racism. They don't hate men. Just because you can draw parallels in the real world, doesn't make those parallels the intended reason for something. Correlation does not equal causation. Unless you can PROVE that misogyny is what caused Gygax to create drow, rather than just trying to imagine what an evil matriarchal society might be like, assuming the worst doesn't accomplish much other than to drag someone's name through the mud. Can you prove that misogyny is the reason for his decision? So, here's the problem. And this is why I can't agree with Hussar and his otherwise completely reasonable post which noted the problematic issues with drow, but said it was important to just concentrate on the current issues. If you don't know where you came from, how do you know where you're going? Notice the amount of pushback a simple observation like this has caused? No one said, "Hey, that EGG, he was a raging racist and sexist who was trying to advance white power and males uber alles with the drow!" No, instead people were discussing, in fairly reasonable terms, how depictions of the drow reflected a lot of baggage- racial and sexist baggage. And that's the problem when you attempt to take Hussar's reasonable suggestion and just move on; if people wish to disregard the structural issues of the past that were glaringly obvious, how can we address the structural issues of the present or future, which may be a little more subtle? It is neither an attack, nor a defense, to say that EGG was not a racist. I don't believe that the origin...

Tuesday, 22nd May, 2018


Saturday, 12th May, 2018

  • 09:22 PM - AbdulAlhazred mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    On the other thread, when I've suggested this is one thing that worldbuilding is for, there has been a lot of disagreement. Most posters on that thread seem to deny that one function of worldbuilding is to establish stuff for the GM to tell to the players. I think the difficulty isn't in denying that it is to 'establish stuff for the GM to tell to the players.' I think they are objecting to the entire concept of analyzing play from a standpoint of what the people at the table DO. They want to only look at what is going on fictionally. Beyond that they wanted to emphasize the tentative, provisional, and incomplete nature of what was world built in order to reduce its significance to being more of a way to establish general character knowledge, mapping of genre tropes to their instantiation within the given milieu, and as a 'convenience feature' for the GM. This lead, more or less directly, to a rather long drawn out debate between Hussar and others about exactly where 'world building' ended and 'adventure design' (or whatever terms you want to use, don't drag me into that) began. Of course, YOU pretty much relegated adventure design itself to the category of world building back in the start of the other thread ('What is World Building For?'). I assume there was, long ago, a similar debate in this thread. I happen to agree with you that for the purposes of analysis the two activities are closely related, but obviously for someone who wants to kind of pass off world building as a sort of side activity it becomes convenient to draw a stronger line between them. So that might be ANOTHER way in which worldbuilding was 'denied' to be a source of information to dictate to players, because the people who did the denying called it something else! Nevertheless, your central assertion, that material produced by the GM exists for the purpose of telling the players how things are in the game world rather than establishing it by...
  • 11:28 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    Or else it's because it has no inherent property of good or bad, so calling it bad is wrong. You can dislike it, but it can't be bad. I can like it, but it can't be good.So I take it you think Lanefan is wrong to have said there is a reason in favour of worldbuilding, namely, that otherwise there is a serious risk of a hodge-podge world. I assume you are going to take him to task for confusing "bad GMing" with some objective risk. Or, alternatively, this whole pseuo-moralising attack on Hussar is nonsense. Yes, I think that's it.
  • 11:09 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    ...rld provides a foundation for the action of a story." which completely refute his argument that any part of building the world that deals with plot is not worldbuilding.Again, worldbuiding may have the goal of creating context. It doesn't follow that all context is worldubilding. And nor does it follow that all RPGing even has some context. There is no context to B1 other than "Let's earn some XP by exploring a dungeon." The context for S1 (Tomb of Horrors) is similar. The context in B2 is marginally thicker, but only marginally. Likewise S2 (White Plume Mountain), which is - by the way - another single-building adventure. Going back to Tomb of Horrors, contrast S1 with the Return to . . . version, which (I understand by reputation - I've never read it) does engage in a whole lot of worldbuilding, establishing all this backstory to try and make the dungeon actually make sense in the context of a consistent, coherent world. This seems to me to be exactly the sort of distinction Hussar is drawing, between adventure design and worldbuilding. You believe he's stating personal preference and applying these reasons to... himself only as opposed to making a general statement about why he believes world building is bad in general? If so that seems like an interesting way of interpreting his statement, and certainly not how I read it. I don't blame you for your preferences, and I'm sure they've formed as a result of your actual experiences, but I don't think they are universal enough to consider worldbuilding as bad. I just don't think it's all that different from any other tool the DM can use....they can be used effectively, or they can be abused.Let's take it, for the sake of argument, that Hussar's comments are grounded primarily in personal preference grounded in personal experience. Are hawkeyefan's grounded in anything more robust or objective? I doubt it. In other words, the claims worldbuilding is not bad is not grounded more firmly than the claim tha...

Friday, 11th May, 2018

  • 09:53 PM - Maxperson mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    I think your splitting hairs. I don't think so. A good analogy for this would be if Hussar said, "I don't like vehicles, because they're too big. Cars, trucks, semis, and airplanes are just too much. That's why I ride a motorcycle. That's not a vehicle." Pointing out that a motorcycle IS a vehicle, just a smaller one that he does like is not splitting hairs. It's similarly not splitting hairs to point out the fact that he does worldbuild, even if on a smaller scale.
  • 06:27 PM - Aldarc mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    Hussar restated his points in the post I quoted, I chose it because it's a clarification of his position in this thread... and it calls into question problems around worldbuilding as a whole not as they pertain to his preferences...Then I will leave that to Hussar to clarify, as I can only speak for my own reading of the situation in the context of the thread. But I do hope that you better understand the contextualization of my own response to you.
  • 06:12 PM - Imaro mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    Let's retrace our steps a bit for contextualization because this entire line of thinking is becoming absurd, and I have little desire to perpetuate that absurdity. I disagreed with Bedrockgames's assertion and kinda spiteful characterization that Hussar was expressing his opinion "as an absolute" and that "Hussar has the answer for everyone." This runs counter, IME, to how I see Hussar expressing his viewpoints in the context of the wider conversation. You asked what then we were discussing. And in the context of this entire conversation, one portion of that is Hussar's preferences rooted in and based on his general observations about worldbuilding as an enterprise of RPGs. I am talking about the wider context of his conversation in this thread. You then asked for my reading on a specific passage. My reading of this passage is again tied to my understanding of Hussar's argument in this entire thread, and I do think that his post in question that you quoted is led by those preferences. Hussar restated his points in the post I quoted, I chose it because it's a clarification of his position in this thread... and it calls into question problems around worldbuilding as a whole not as they pertain to his preferences...
  • 05:59 PM - Aldarc mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    But I was asking about that specific passage... Him having done both in the thread means he has made general statements about worldbuilding while you claimed he was only stating preference.Let's retrace our steps a bit for contextualization because this entire line of thinking is becoming absurd, and I have little desire to perpetuate that absurdity. I disagreed with Bedrockgames's assertion and kinda spiteful characterization that Hussar was expressing his opinion "as an absolute" and that "Hussar has the answer for everyone." This runs counter, IME, to how I see Hussar expressing his viewpoints in the context of the wider conversation. You asked what then we were discussing. And in the context of this entire conversation, one portion of that is Hussar's preferences rooted in and based on his general observations about worldbuilding as an enterprise of RPGs. I am talking about the wider context of his conversation in this thread. You then asked for my reading on a specific passage. My reading of this passage is again tied to my understanding of Hussar's argument in this entire thread, and I do think that his post in question that you quoted is led by those preferences. Aldarc, I share a lot of Imaro's sentiments here. I think you and Hussar are trying to have it both ways, on the one hand saying "this is just my opinion and if you object you are reacting because you feel morally judged", on the other hand saying "...
  • 04:20 PM - Aldarc mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    ...finition, instead of "admitting" to a false one, then that's on you. It's no sweat off my back if some faceless person on the internet doesn't have respect for me. :)However, we are not discussing whether an orange is an apple or an apple is an orange. 'Apples' and 'oranges' are physical objects that have physical properties that we can ascertain. We are discussing what constitutes the definition for an abstract concept that pertains to fiction-making: e.g., "Mary Sue," "Anti-hero," "Second World," etc. LOL He posted this example as a definition of his worldbuilding. "Worldbuilding is the process of constructing an imaginary world, sometimes associated with a whole fictional universe. ... Developing an imaginary setting with coherent qualities such as a history, geography, and ecology is a key task for many science fiction or fantasy writers"Yes, and you and you alone misread what he quoted to mean "the entire world" and then proceded to gloat in song and dance that you got Hussar to "refute" a point that he never made. "LOL," indeed. But he intentionally left out these portions of the link. "Worldbuilding often involves the creation of maps, a backstory, and people for the world." which lists people and for RPGs would include monsters.Simply pulling monsters from a monster manual, however, would likely not fall within the conventional usage or sense of "worldbuilding." Again, to echo Bedrockgames, I think that this is you splitting hairs. "From a game-design perspective, the goal of worldbuilding is to create the context for a story. Consistency is an important element, since the world provides a foundation for the action of a story." which completely refute his argument that any part of building the world that deals with plot is not worldbuilding. It's says that the freaking goal of worldbuilding in a game is for the story(plot).Did you have a reason for intentionally leaving out the following sentence? "However, J. R. R. Tolkien described the go...
  • 04:07 PM - Imaro mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    Want to address this and get some clarity first but I'll get to your other points later... One would certainly hope that you would know that before you chose to wade into it. There are multiple divergent conversations at play here though. On this point, however, I think that Hussar is clearly discussing his own preferences that he would like expressed in published materials. As to the rest of the conversations? That might be a bit much to summarize. So just to be clear, when Hussar posts... Ok, perhaps a point form list of how I think that world building is bad might be a good idea. I. How Worldbuilding is Bad for the DM/Table Worldbuilding takes away from time that could be spent writing the actual adventure. The more time the DM spends detailing Elven Tea Ceremonies, the less time he or she has to write an actual adventure. Some DM's become very, very attached to their creations. To the point where any attempt by the players to change that creation will be met with very stiff resistance. The possibility of the "Tour Des Realms" campaign where the PC's are basically just tourists in the game and are expected to make the appropriate oohing and ahhhing noises at the DM's wonderful creation. The narrowing of possibilities in the game. The...
  • 02:38 PM - Maxperson mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    Lol... what a way to dismiss the other side of a conversation... Don't address their responses and counterpoints, just declare their perspective as emotionally driven and use a bad analogy (oh the irony) to characterize their responses as both illogical and ill-infomed. See it's this type of declaration that gets conversations emotionally driven. That seems par for the course. Take a look at him saying that I'm arguing in bad faith for sticking to the definition of worldbuilding, and not accepting Hussar's re-definition of the term to mean the opposite of what the definition Hussar provides says is the goal of worldbuilding in a game.
  • 02:20 PM - Imaro mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    I think you are projecting here or at least exposing your own knee-jerk reaction. I don't think that Hussar is expressing this sentiment, as he is fairly clear about his own viewpoint and perspective on the matter. Then what exactly are we discussing? Hussar clearly knows what is better for his specific game (something that hasn't really been addressed or acknowledged from those against worldbuilding) so that begs the question... what is the conversation supposed to be around if he's asserting this only for himself and his particular game?
  • 02:11 PM - Aldarc mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    ... in the actual advice "you should drink alcohol in moderation" or based on disagreement with basic facts like "alcohol has well-documented negative side-effects" but because their response will invariably be guided by their own emotional knee-jerk reaction of "I enjoy drinking and I am feeling morally judged for drinking alcohol ergo the article must be wrong and drinking is not bad." Nevertheless, most rational people should be able to pick up on how an article entitled "Why Drinking is Bad" is not meant to be a blanket moral judgment against drinking. Though most rational people should be able to understand that, that will not always be the case as people are not entirely rational people. You could replace the word "worldbuilding" with just about any issue and see a similar brand of emotionally-charged pushback that speaks less about the validity of the argument and more about the persecution complex of the respondants. And this is being expressed as an absolute, objective, Hussar has the answer for everyone.I think you are projecting here or at least exposing your own knee-jerk reaction. I don't think that Hussar is expressing this sentiment, as he is fairly clear about his own viewpoint and perspective on the matter. There is no False Equivalence going on with my posts. Your analogy was a false equivalence between situations, Max. Your false equivalence literally was a case of apples and oranges to debating the definition of 'worldbuilding.' If you honestly believe that this wasn't a case of false equivalence or have no intent to sincerely reflect on why that is the case, then I am hard-pressed to see how you have any intent whatsoever to engage in this conversation with any shred of good faith or self-respect. Hussar provided definitions that fail to back him up. More than one of them in fact. His claim that worldbuilding involves building the world, EXCEPT when it pertains to the plot(Then it's magically not worldbuilding) is absurd and doesn't ...
  • 01:40 PM - Maxperson mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    Cut it out with the false equivalence, Max. We are discussing of abstract ideas and not the classification of fruits. There is no False Equivalence going on with my posts. "New definition" implies the establishment of an "old definition," yet the argument transpiring is about establishing what that "old definition" entails. You referring to your opponents' definition as a "new definition" is a pretty sleezy rhetorical way to position your own idiomatic definition as the "old definition" when you have not made a convincing case for that at all yet. Hussar provided definitions that fail to back him up. More than one of them in fact. His claim that worldbuilding involves building the world, EXCEPT when it pertains to the plot(Then it's magically not worldbuilding) is absurd and doesn't mean the definitions even he provided. I reject his selective worldbuilding re-definition in favor of the old ones which involve those things that make up building the world.
  • 01:30 PM - Imaro mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    ...subset of GM's who use worldbuilding and also succumb to this. It's also a weak argument because it's pointing out that using a tool the wrong way is bad not that the tool itself is bad. Some people use knives to unscrew a screw... does that mean knives are bad tools or that this particular application of the knife is bad? The possibility of the "Tour Des Realms" campaign where the PC's are basically just tourists in the game and are expected to make the appropriate oohing and ahhhing noises at the DM's wonderful creation. Eh, some people like exploration campaigns, some people actually enjoy discovering and exploring the GM's creation. If they are having fun why is that a bad thing, and who are you to claim it as such? If anything I would say when this is an issue it's a mismatch of player and GM desires and expectations. You don't like discovery/exploration campaigns, cool... but worldbuilding is necessary for such campaigns So IMO the answer isn't worlduilding is bad... it's Hussar isn't a good fit for a GM/group that enjoys such things. The narrowing of possibilities in the game. The DM is a heavy world builder but the player doesn't want to play one of the pre-approved races. She wants to play something else. The DM nixes the idea, not because the idea is necessarily bad or powergaming or anything like that, but, because it doesn't fit with the DM's preconceptions of the campaign. This could also apply to any number of player concepts. I don't see this as a problem anymore than theme or genre constraints would be a problem. If the player bought into the campaign concept this shouldn't be an issue. If they haven't well that's a communication issue. If I'm running a game in Middle Earth and you agreed to play in a Middle Earth campaign there shouldn't be an issue if I'm not allowing you to play a tieflinf, irregardless of how cool you make it sound or how badly you want it. We'll play D&D eventually but until then you should try to abide by the social contr...
  • 10:12 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    Yet even then, that "GM narration" has to consist of something. And if the module assumes the PCs "stumble into" the Hidden Shrine, that presupposes a further (unwritten) assumption that the PCs are doing something else that brings them there in the first place such that they can do said stumbling-into....hm?But starting Isle of Dread with "You're sailing from X to Y and then a storm blows up, and beaches you on this lonely island . . ." isn't worldbuilding. (Hussar's post indicates that this isn't the canonical way of starting X1. But it is a possible way, which is enough for my point.) Which is Hussar's point. The Phantom of the Opera happens in Paris, but we don't actually need to build Paris; we just allude to it. The GM can narrate that the PCs are sailing from X to Y without anyone actually having to build X or Y. They are just names in a bit of introductory framing. all of those also exist within the game world at large and that larger game world has information about it that exists outside of the building. What's the larger game world for B1? Moldvay Basic stipulates dungeon-only adventuring. The journey to and from the dungeon happens in imagination, but is not played at the table. Here's the "game world at large" for B1 (it's p 6 of my PDF version): area, Rogahn the Fearless (a fighter of renown) and Zelligar the Unknown (a magic-user of mystery and power) pooled their resources and expertise to construct a home and strong...
  • 04:04 AM - Imaro mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    Well, Hussar thinks it bogs down published material in unnecessary stuff that doesn't contribute to play. Doesn't contribute to play for who? If he's only speaking for himself.. Cool, I have no reason to doubt his claim but if he's claiming to speak for others then yes I disagree. Neither Hussar or anyone else can claim to have knowledge of what others use at their table, so unless he's the sole audience for said material its going to be nigh impossible to prove his assertion applies to those in the hobby as a whole. Look, anyone is free to use or discard material as they see fit in their games so the only way it will undermine his goals is if he tries to use material he has no use for... which makes no sense. I think (and he may agree - I can't remember all the posts) that it pushes towards an approach to play which emphasises pre-authored fiction as a focus of play, rather than something more spontaneous and mutual between those at the table. I'm sure you disagree with these th...

Thursday, 10th May, 2018

  • 11:31 PM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    ...mple. Are you incapable of finding a more meaningful example? Didn't you mention up thread that kobolds serving dragons would have more impact than hobgoblins hating elves? You clearly realize there are degrees. I would disagree with this. As I mentioned, it depends on what has already been established. If my game is set in a world that is very much like Westeros let's say, then dropping an otyugh into a location certainly implies much more than if I used one in a game set on Oerth, where the presence of monsters is a given. So no, it doesn't just mean "here's an otyugh"; what it means will vary from game to game, depending on the world that's been established.Yes. I'm not saying that it's impossible to do more worldbuilding by using an otyugh, or writing lore into a MM. I'm saying that those things need not, as such, be worldbuilding. I'm not dkisputing that sometimes RPGers worldbuild and MM-authors worldbuild (though my threshold for the latter I think is higher than Hussar's). I'm disputing that it is inherent in running a game and setting up a situation.
  • 11:28 PM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    But what is it undermining? Even if it's not used in play what does having the information jotted down actively undermine?Well, Hussar thinks it bogs down published material in unnecessary stuff that doesn't contribute to play. I think (and he may agree - I can't remember all the posts) that it pushes towards an approach to play which emphasises pre-authored fiction as a focus of play, rather than something more spontaneous and mutual between those at the table. I'm sure you disagree with these thoughts. But that's the nature of these sorts of discussions!


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Thursday, 24th May, 2018

  • 11:53 PM - evileeyore quoted Hussar in post Harassment Policies: New Allegations Show More Work To Be Done
    Wait, what? Andre Norton as sexist? You do realize that most of her later works featured strong female protagonists and she's generally considered a pretty strong feminist writer, right? Sure, some of her early works might be a bit problematic, but, I suggest you read the Witch World series if you think Andre Norton is sexist. 1 - I dug a bit deeper, and you're right, it's only her early works that are sexist against women. In the early to mid 70's she started using female protags and shifted away from women as only background furniture in her stories. 2 - One can be sexist against men. In her later stories her themes are more and more about the evil that is male and it's reliance on evil technology. Now, this was a bit sketchy of a source, so I'm willing let this one go. As I said, I don't read Norton, her stories never appealed to me. They don't hate men. Well... actually... I went back and reread the Complete Book of Elves. They've [Drow Females] a pretty big hate o...
  • 04:39 PM - Particle_Man quoted Hussar in post Hidden
  • 04:34 PM - Eltab quoted Hussar in post Harassment Policies: New Allegations Show More Work To Be Done
    1. Drow as problematic. There is also the connotation that 'being stuck underground' = 'a horrible fate'. Which has been a part of Western Civilization since its beginning; some roots tracing back to King David in Psalms asking God "Do not send my soul down to Sheol, into the pit."
  • 01:21 PM - Maxperson quoted Hussar in post Harassment Policies: New Allegations Show More Work To Be Done
    And you can't imagine anyone possibly making any other connection here? Your interpretation is the only one that anyone could possibly come to? Not one person, looking at the Drow could possibly come to any other conclusion? Sure I can imagine another reason, but Gygax wasn't some raging racist. So given the incredibly unlikely possibility that he decided to make elves with racism in mind, or the incredibly likely possibility that he didn't, I'm not going to assume racism. See, just because YOU don't have a problem with it doesn't matter. it really, really, really doesn't. Heck, it doesn't even really matter that you are pretty much correct in the roots of the idea. Although, arguing that drow are Svartalfar is a bit of a stretch since virtually everything that we associate with drow - matriarchy, evil, spiders - is entirely a D&D conceit. But, even if we ignore the light=good, dark=evil aspect, they're still incredibly misogynistic. Again, men hating women who worship a ...
  • 10:45 AM - evileeyore quoted Hussar in post Harassment Policies: New Allegations Show More Work To Be Done
    ... "in some ways like you". I'm not saying this doesn't exist... but in all my years of gaming I've played far more characters that were unlike me than like me. Why would anyone want to roleplay as themselves? I can get the whole "I want to play a [ethnic skin color] character", I've seen it happen often enough Black and Latino dwarves, elves, etc... I've never once heard a GM say "No, sorry those [FANTASY RACE] are only white skinned!" Is there really a problem, or is this a problem people were told existed by their college professors/favorite internet [-]journos[/-] bloggers? And you can't imagine anyone possibly making any other connection here? Oh no, it's pretty obvious you see it as a problem. It requires zero imagination. I think you are wrong though. Although, arguing that drow are Svartalfar is a bit of a stretch since virtually everything that we associate with drow - matriarchy, evil, spiders - is entirely a D&D conceit. That actually came from me in re...
  • 05:59 AM - Maxperson quoted Hussar in post Harassment Policies: New Allegations Show More Work To Be Done
    Ok, couple of things in random order: 1. Drow as problematic. Ok, there's the obvious color thing. Yes, the legends made evil elves/fairies black but, THAT'S THE POINT. The reason they made them black is because of racism. The reason for it was that the blackness of night held dangers and unknowns. It caused fear and was relegated to being the color of evil. Later on, because black was thought to be the color of evil, people with black skin were often treated poorly, but they were not the cause of the black = evil belief. It's very probable that Gygax was going with the night/day association, not racism.
  • 03:32 AM - evileeyore quoted Hussar in post Harassment Policies: New Allegations Show More Work To Be Done
    No, I'm not. Didn't then, and don't plan to. Actually you did. You chose to answer "Please tell me what inclusive, progressive authors were writing about fantasy at the time?" and chose Zelazny's Amber as one of your examples. A sexist work if ever there was one. Granted I chose not call you on Norton or Anderson (another pair of sexist writers) as I figure one distinct call out was enough, but maybe I should have? (Also, admission, I'm not as familiar with Norton and Anderson, not being as fond of their works, so had to do some research to confirm my suspicion. Which I was too lazy to do earlier.) That you opted to draw out the singular redeeming quality bestowed upon the (unreliable) hero of the (first five) Amber stories doesn't ignore the rest of the work. Anymore than Hussar choosing to focus only on the negative aspects of the authors and works on Gygax's list doesn't ignore the positives within those works or authors. If it's good for you, why not the other side? Why can't we draw out only the positive aspects of the Gygaxian list, which he clearly drew upon when crafting D&D, since D&D is inherently not sexist or racist in it's rules (I'm choosing to ignore the negative art at the moment, just as you ignored Zelzazny his sexism...). I pointed out one specific aspect, as an ethical principle which Zelazny established, and which Gygax, so far as I can tell, ignored, disregarded, and didn't bring into D&D: whether a Lord of Amber could recognize the worth of other humans *even partially*. Stunning. That the idea that players of D&D can be any race and are not required to ignore the personhood of all the other races somehow went right past you didn't it? Yes, yes, I know early and modern D&D is still 'color-coded' for one's stealing from/kill...

Wednesday, 23rd May, 2018

  • 05:18 AM - Riley37 quoted Hussar in post Players should play, and not be heard: Campaign Edition
    Huh, funny, that's only post 62 for me. Wonder who's got me blocked. Haven't pissed anyone off recently that I know of. Iunno, but it wasn't me. Your declaration "My setting is never, ever more important than the players at the table" rather impressed me. Seems to me, you bring your moral compass to the table, as well as to the story told at the table.

Tuesday, 22nd May, 2018

  • 07:44 PM - tomBitonti quoted Hussar in post Avenger's Infinity War *Spoiler* Discussion
    But, that's not how culling works. You don't cull once and then walk away. You cull periodically. That's what hunting seasons in North America actually are. There's a reason that we have those seasons and the limitations on the number of animals killed. The notion that you can cull once and walk away is completely irrational. And, frankly, wars have never really reduced populations. At least, not in the longer term and even in the short term. Good grief, we've killed more people in wars in the last hundred years than in the past ten thousand and yet we've managed to increase our population several times in the same period. But, again, do we really need to spell it out in the movie? "Hey folks, I'm amassing god-like powers. I am now literally the closest thing to a god in the universe. What am I going to do with these cosmic powers? I'm going to wipe out half the universe, resulting in massive extinctions throughout the universe as worlds completely collapse in the aftermath a...
  • 03:49 PM - Bagpuss quoted Hussar in post Harassment Policies: New Allegations Show More Work To Be Done
    Seriously? Not due to racism? Ok, let's list the ways shall we? We have the grandfather's of the genre, all those kind folks who Gygax listed in the Appendix of the DMG as the sources of inspiration for the game, who, number among them, some of the most virulent bigots in print. Please tell me what inclusive, progressive authors were writing about fantasy at the time? That might of been sources of inspiration. Please explain how it makes the original AD&D game racist. http://www.digital-eel.com/blog/ADnD_reading_list.htm - List for reference (in case anyone is interested) Clearly because Call of Cthulhu RPG is based on H.P.Lovecraft's work it must be really racist, and only white supremacists would go anywhere near it. And that's just the start. Let's not forget, what, about thirty years of art and art direction that was pretty much 100% white. Perhaps because the vast majority of people playing and illustrating were white at the time, you tend to illustrate your own culture, tha...
  • 03:43 PM - pemerton quoted Hussar in post Harassment Policies: New Allegations Show More Work To Be Done
    Let's not forget, what, about thirty years of art and art direction that was pretty much 100% white. Granted, that's been shifting in the last decade or so, but, there was about forty years before that where the art was certainly not inclusive.It was more than "not inclusive". Peoples who the Monster Manual described as non-white (eg dwarves, gnomes) have routinely been depicted as white in D&D art. Saying that there is a racial problem in gaming is like saying rain is wet.There is an active half-orc thread on another sub-forum of these boards that I think exemplifies some of the casual ways in which fantasy RPGing can have both race problems and problems with sex and gender. The thread involves casual discussion of degrees of orc blood, and casual discussion of such things as victorious (and implicitly male) warriors taking (and, by implication, having sex with, consensual or not) the wives of the warriors they defeat. It's one thing to read, and draw upon (as part of the literary he...
  • 03:20 PM - pemerton quoted Hussar in post D&D Has the Biggest Playerbase, So Why is it the Hardest for 3rd Party to Market Too?
    I suppose, since using the OGL is a thing, you could make the argument that it's a contract law issue, but, the colloquial use is certainly well established in gaming. Paizo, when it produced Dungeon and Dragon magazines, were typically referred to as a second party publisher since they were under direct contract with WotC and were not bound by the OGL. 3rd party, AFAIK, in these conversations, always refers to OGL producers.The OGL is a licence agreement. So a party to the OGL is a party to an agreement with other licensees. If the publisher in question is drawing on a WotC-licensed SRD, then that publisher is in a contractual agreement with WotC. What relationship is the 3PP a third party to? The only relatoinship I can see is that between WotC (the core publisher and licensor) and the consumer ie the community of D&D players. You seem to be saying that 3PP really means "3rd tier" (with WotC as "1st tier" and non-OGL license partners eg Paizo in the 3E era as "2nd tier"). But that j...
  • 03:01 PM - Parmandur quoted Hussar in post D&D Has the Biggest Playerbase, So Why is it the Hardest for 3rd Party to Market Too?
    We who happyhermit? I've seen second party publishers referred to quite a number of times, particularly in 3e discussions where you had different "tiers" of publishers - those that were using OGL and those that weren't. How would you describe Paizo's publishing Dungeon and Dragon, if not a second party publisher? Or the Dragonlance stuff that was published during 3e which was certainly not under the umbrella of the OGL. Granted, there aren't anywhere nears as many 2PP out there. The vast majority publish under the OGL, and thus are 3PP. But, in the context of this discussion - about why it's hard for everyone other than WotC to get noticed in the market - how does labeling consumers as the second party publishers help?There are no "second party publishers," but the consumers are the second party to whom the first party and third party providers are selling. In terms of the discussion, the question is why does the second party market prefer the first party product over third party, rel...
  • 02:48 PM - lowkey13 quoted Hussar in post Players should play, and not be heard: Campaign Edition
    No, but, you are advocating, from what I can see, a much more DM driven game than I prefer. I have zero problem with a DM who comes to the table with virtually nothing, asks the players to create a group and then builds the campaign based on the feedback from the players. IOW, the FATE approach. I mean, heck, I want to use Dawn of Worlds for the next campaign I run. Sit down for a session (our sessions are about 3 hours long) and build the campaign setting collaboratively through that game and then build the campaign from there. So ... wait for this ... it might blow your mind. If you, as the DM, are stating that this is the type of campaign that you are going to run, then .... you are, in fact, advocating for a specific type of campaign (a setting, if you will). You are not polling the players. You aren't saying, "Hey guys, I got nothing. I'm bland like vanilla. So tell ya what- we can run Dark Sun, or do an AP set in FR, or Dawn of Worlds. Whatever, man. It doesn't matter t...
  • 02:42 PM - Maxperson quoted Hussar in post Harassment Policies: New Allegations Show More Work To Be Done
    Ok, let's list the ways shall we? We have the grandfather's of the genre, all those kind folks who Gygax listed in the Appendix of the DMG as the sources of inspiration for the game, who, number among them, some of the most virulent bigots in print. That doesn't mean that people chose to play the game for racist reasons. And that's just the start. Let's not forget, what, about thirty years of art and art direction that was pretty much 100% white. Granted, that's been shifting in the last decade or so, but, there was about forty years before that where the art was certainly not inclusive.[./quote] The people playing the game where primarily white, and inclusion wasn't as in the front of people's minds like it is today(which is why it's changing). That doesn't mean that they were trying to keep minorities out. I believe that it was more ignorance, than racism. [quote]I could go on, but, what's the point? Like I said, it's a pretty known issue. But, Maxperson, my point wasn...
  • 02:36 PM - lowkey13 quoted Hussar in post Players should play, and not be heard: Campaign Edition
    Or, conversely, adding firearms might make the player not enjoy the game as much, and, since, for me, the player's enjoyment is the most important thing, leaving an idea on the cutting room floor is always the first choice I'd make. My setting is never, ever more important than the players at the table. So, again, not sure if the point is getting across. I'm not advocating for a DM who says, "What, you hate firearms? Well, I AM THE KING OF THE WORLD! You will take my firearms, and you will like it. I wasn't even going to have firearms until I heard you didn't want them. HA! Suck it, Trebek." Although, I guess if you really want to go old school ...
  • 02:20 PM - Maxperson quoted Hussar in post Harassment Policies: New Allegations Show More Work To Be Done
    Gimme a break. Saying that there is a racial problem in gaming is like saying rain is wet. Arguing that there is no problem is willfully ignorant at best. But, of course, admitting that the history of gaming has been almost entirely white doesn't fit in with the narrative that it's just a bunch of special snowflakes virtue signaling and would mean that the whole Sad Puppies thing would be revealed for the pile of garbage that it is. Perhaps you can quote where I said that the history of gaming isn't mostly white. I can't find it anywhere. Maaaaaybe, that was part of the "demographic of gaming" that I mentioned. I'm not convinced that it's mostly white due to racism, but it is and has been mostly white, though that's slowly changing.
  • 01:43 PM - Maxperson quoted Hussar in post Harassment Policies: New Allegations Show More Work To Be Done
    Pretty much says it all right there doesn't it. Gencon, in this article, is "demographically different" because the attendees have disposable income. Translation, only white people have the money to go to Gen Con so, of course, Gen Con is mostly white. While Correia was a jerk about it in his article, he is correct that white people have more disposable income on average than hispanic and black people. There are all kinds of articles and studies that back that up. What he doesn't state that I can recall(at least in the 2/3ish of his article that I read) is that asian people have more disposable income than white people, and he doesn't get into the demographics of race when it comes to gaming, which probably plays a larger role than income. He was also correct that people seek out jobs local to them, so the racial make-up of employees at the venue Gen Con is held at will be similar to the local racial demographic.
  • 09:17 AM - Jhaelen quoted Hussar in post Avenger's Infinity War *Spoiler* Discussion
    I dunno. "I'm going to wipe out half the population of the universe to save it" isn't exactly the most rational of ideas. Do we really need to be explicitly told that Thanos isn't running on all eight cylinders? Then again, apparently so since people have actually argued that this idea might actually have any merit. :uhoh:That's because the general idea of reducing a population in order to save them (or their environment) _is_ rational, as has already been pointed out in this thread. It's the over-generalization and scope that turns it into madness. I recall reading about the 'advantageous' side effect of wars of reducing populations. There's definitely precedence. I think it's more a question of morality than rationality. I.e. other methods of regulating population growth may be less questionable.
  • 08:42 AM - MarkB quoted Hussar in post D&D Has the Biggest Playerbase, So Why is it the Hardest for 3rd Party to Market Too?
    We who happyhermit? I've seen second party publishers referred to quite a number of times, particularly in 3e discussions where you had different "tiers" of publishers - those that were using OGL and those that weren't. How would you describe Paizo's publishing Dungeon and Dragon, if not a second party publisher? Subcontractors.


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