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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Yesterday, 04:11 PM
    So you would agree that your was a question not asked in good faith? I hope that's true. I suppose we will see through your actions. But when you say that I am simply "arriving bad motives to those who disagree with " - which is certainly a negative insinuation of my motives and character in its own right - and then I respond by saying that the reactions made by others are "sympathetically...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Yesterday, 01:53 PM
    That's a loaded question. I don't think that is redefining the term "worldbuilding" at all, but, rather, that his use reflects an understanding of the most prevalent performative mode of activity that "worldbuilding" takes in common parlance.
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Yesterday, 12:48 PM
    Now look who is more interested in assigning bad motives to people than reaching mutual understanding. So while we are here... Well, do you, Ovinomancer?
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Yesterday, 10:16 AM
    I don't think that these are necessarily "bad motives," but I do think that they are sympathetically human ones. "False equivalence" and "zealotry" do not have to be done out of "malice or mischief" for them to transpire. People who enjoy the broader project of fictive world creation obviously don't enjoy being told that their "hobby project" may not be warranted, productive, or even healthy when...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Yesterday, 06:47 AM
    Missed that. Have to go back and reread some posts I think. /edit to add Yup, just went back over the posts from today and yesterday. other than you specifically agreeing with Maxperson that world building is the same as setting creation, you actually say nothing about how he and you, have redefined the common definition of the word to suit your own argument. Look, I posted three...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Yesterday, 06:46 AM
    No, you're not actually. The commonly accepted use of world building is distinct from setting. I posted three different sources and they all agree that world building =/= setting creation. it's going above and beyond what is needed for the setting. Granted, my own take is much more negative, and that's fair enough. I see world building as self indulgent and largely a waste of time. You are...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Yesterday, 04:55 AM
    Wonder if Ovinomancer will be as qick to take Maxperson to task for creativity during definitions.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 24th April, 2018, 09:55 PM
    Ovinomancer - I'd point out that the definition of world building that I'm using, which is setting building above and beyond the needs of story - is the accepted definition of the term. Those insisting that world building=anything to do with setting are the ones that are needlessly broadening the term. You cannot complain about me using an idiosyncratic definition of the word when I'm...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 24th April, 2018, 05:02 PM
    This thread demonstrates that the term "worldbuilding" is seemingly too broad for useful jargon when debating its merits and flaws. Because a number of people, yourself included, seem to have a different sense for the term "worldbuilding" that lies outside of its contextual sense in the OP. For some in this thread the term is more analogous to "any and everything that the GM does to establish the...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 24th April, 2018, 03:46 PM
    I can't say that I agree with this particular assertion, but that's just because this fails in common practice of speech where terms are constantly redefined, sometimes broadened and othertimes specified, for the sake of engaging in more meaningful discourse with greater clarity. In this case, the terms "worldbuilding" and "setting building" are assigned more particular sets of meaning within our...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 24th April, 2018, 03:17 PM
    Yeah, I saw first hand how much new ideas could get past the gate keepers with 4e, thanks. Good grief, 5e hasn't had an original module yet. Three years of rehashes of existing modules. Yeah, new ideas are what gamers want. Sure. Oh, and Maxperson, are you sure about your definition? Wikipedia gives this one: Mirriam Webster:
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 24th April, 2018, 01:36 PM
    Still easier than Late Bronze Age Canaan. If consensus is difficult, then go with one of the prevailing models for the time period. The Bible Unearthed by Finkelstein and Silberman provides a good historical overview and reconstruction. The historical reconstruction is skeptical of a United Davidic Monarchy, seeing it as Judean historigraphy from the 7th-8th century BCE. In general, Israel and...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 24th April, 2018, 12:29 PM
    See, this is the main part where we diverge. I wouldn't call that world building. There's no world there. There's absolutely no attempt to present a functional reality there. Which is what worldbuilding IS - an attempt to present a functioning model of a setting. Keep doesn't do that. It presents the bare bones of what a DM needs to run an adventure there. With virtually no details or...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 24th April, 2018, 09:51 AM
    Actually, to be honest happyhermit, I'd say 5e is doing quite well on the world building front. There's what, 15 books for 5e now? Other than SCaG, none of them are much rooted in world building. Now, I do have an issue with the amount of world building that is in 5e core - particularly the Monster Manual which I find mostly useless to be honest. All the bits and bobs about this race being a...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 24th April, 2018, 06:58 AM
    Fair enough, again, if you are insisting that all setting is world building. However, I would draw the distinction here. KotB has virtually no world building. We have no idea where the Keep is, how many people live in the Keep, what and who supports the Keep, who does the Castellan report to? No idea. Does the Castellan have a family? No idea. So on and so forth. Contrast with Village...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 24th April, 2018, 04:47 AM
    Yup, this is the part that just flies straight up my nose. Because, when you shoot into that crowd, you suffer attack penalties and you STILL need to successfully strike. But I can pick a point 150 feet away from me, with no markers, no points of aiming, that is exactly 25 feet away from point A and 20 feet away from point B without any check, while running and dodging attacks. Because...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 24th April, 2018, 12:41 AM
    The difference between setting and world building is the difference between Keep on the Borderlands and Village of Hommlet.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 23rd April, 2018, 10:42 AM
    Well, Zardnaar, I'd think that the fact that the RPG market has tripled in size in the last five or six years might have something to do with 5e. Even comparing to the height of 3e, the market is still about 50% larger. I think it's very safe to say that 5e is doing extremely well. And the fact that it is doing this well four years after release is practically unheard of.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 23rd April, 2018, 10:40 AM
    Just as a point, when you say failure, you mean sales failure right? Of course, by that metric, virtually every single RPG on the market, other than D&D, was and is a failure. Granted, there are exceptions, but, by and large, every single RPG is an economic failure, if we're insisting on the Core Brand metric.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 23rd April, 2018, 08:04 AM
    Which, of course, runs into the whole gnome effect problem. Just becauses 10% of your audience doesn't like something, that means that nearly 50% of your groups have a problem with something kvetching about this or that change.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 23rd April, 2018, 08:00 AM
    Well, considering your game world as agreed upon at the outset of the campaign was to revolve around that single city, then, yup. Why not? Why create an entirely new city just so they can go look for something? Why not spend that time creating the adventure in the city they are already invested in? IOW, to me, you just did a bunch of work - designing a city - for the sole purpose of...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 23rd April, 2018, 07:55 AM
    And, fair enough. If you equate the two, then of course world building is fine.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 23rd April, 2018, 12:04 AM
    I think this illustrates my point exactly. There's virtually no difference between hit dice and healing surges. And, no, cleric healing could still affect you when you had no surges left, so, you're mistaken right there. Clerics could "Cure Light Wounds", for example, which did not burn healing surges. There really is virtually no difference here. The difference is on the class side of...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 22nd April, 2018, 11:54 PM
    Fair enough. Because, well, food is the word we use for that stuff we (generally) put in our mouths and eat. It's a perfectly good word. But, we also have a perfectly good word - setting building. Every story needs a setting. It's one corner of the three things you need (the other two being character and plot). So, it's pretty much impossible to have a game without a setting. So, is...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 22nd April, 2018, 09:14 AM
    And that's a fair criticism. World building, is, in my mind, bad, because I take all the elements of setting building that I don't like and don't think are needed and label that "world building". OTOH, the reverse is true. If we simply say that anything to do with building a setting is world building, then, of course world building is a good thing. It's all in how people draw the...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 22nd April, 2018, 08:09 AM
    Irony. Delicious. :) Look, the basic problem with this conversation is that no one can actually agree on what world building actualy is. Is every single element of setting world building? For some in this thread, I think that they think so. As soon as you add anything to the setting, that's world buildling. Now, me, I disagree. Setting building and world building are not the same thing....
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 22nd April, 2018, 03:40 AM
    Just a point, no horse in this race, but, no, that's not true. D&D fell behind Vampire the Masquerade for a couple of years back in the 90's. But, yeah, let's be honest here, 4e was not a success by any real measure.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 22nd April, 2018, 01:57 AM
    It's funny. I got asked for specific criticisms, which I provided. Instead of actually discussing these criticisms, all conversation got immediately shut down with those who didn't like my criticisms basically either telling me that they never happen, don't matter or never happen at their table and thus, can never actually happen in the wild. Sigh. Look, I presented why I, me, myself,...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 22nd April, 2018, 01:51 AM
    Hussar replied to 40 years...
    Started in 1980 after my older brother got me into it with Moldvay Basic/Expert. Been a junkie ever since and, with only a couple of breaks here and there, I've basically played weekly the whole time. Good grief. That's a pile of time. :D
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 22nd April, 2018, 01:29 AM
    It always shocks me just how much writing style matters. So much of 4e made it's way into 5e, but, because the writing style was so different, and the information presented differently, people just accepted it as "part of the D&D experience". Heck, the two step short/long rest mechanic, which was so derided in 4e, appears in 5e with a small change (5 minutes to 1 hour) and no one bats an...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 22nd April, 2018, 01:04 AM
    Apples and oranges. Hitting a specific target with an arrow is a HECK of a lot different than hitting a specific point with a grenade such that you can tell that target X is exactly this far away and target Y is exactly that far away from the point where you are throwing a grenade. And, yes, I was referring to the 4e rules (and 3e as well) where you couldn't realign the grid. As was...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 22nd April, 2018, 12:46 AM
    It's nice when people actually recognize the issue, even this far in, without resorting to all sorts of straw men and other silly buggers. And can say it succinctly without resorting to hundred line dissertations.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 21st April, 2018, 07:38 AM
    Not really. I've played in lots of them over the past thirty years or so. I've obviously had fun. Thing is, the "feel you've fully explored the setting" is not something I've ever been interested in. Don't care. Nor, IME, do players care in the slightest either.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 20th April, 2018, 09:13 AM
    Yeah, I realize that. But, in 4e, you couldn't do that. oops, ninja'd by Tony V.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 20th April, 2018, 09:08 AM
    Lanefan - it does help to remember though that you are something of an outlier with decades long campaigns. Most tables don't do that. Heck, in our past four campaigns, we've played in 4 different game worlds. What's the point of detailing up all that stuff when a world is only going to be needed for a single campaign? To me, the idea of joining a campaign that's been ongoing for more than...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Thursday, 19th April, 2018, 04:53 PM
    With advice like that, I may have to look more closely at giving the PbtA engine a whirl. (I have picked up the Blades in the Dark off-shoot, but I have not yet had an opportunity to play it or read through it properly.) It's incredible how much we can learn from other games. Along similar lines, I have also appreciated Fate's Session 0 approach that actually gives players the opportunity to...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Thursday, 19th April, 2018, 03:12 PM
    Huh? Isn't this his point?
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Thursday, 19th April, 2018, 01:12 PM
    I think one of my primary criticisms with threads about worldbuilding - and this is not aimed at anyone in particular - is that they almost always invariably devolve into people wanting to talk about their homebrew worldbuilding. Though having examples are nice, it again gets to my contention that worldbuilding often comes across as self-indulgant oversharing, even when people are asking for...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 19th April, 2018, 11:17 AM
    Hey, I like Stargate and Supernatural. :'(
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 19th April, 2018, 07:25 AM
    So, about half way between Clone Wars and A New Hope. Makes sense. Isn't Clone Wars supposed to be about 20 years or so before ANH? Isn't that when the Rebels cartoon is set? Not that any of this really matters, just curious.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 19th April, 2018, 04:42 AM
    Ok, specific criticisms of world building: It takes away time from the DM that would be better spent on developing adventures. We do not have unlimited time, and much of the world building stuff that goes on has little or nothing to do with the specific adventure that the players are doing. Worldbuilding replaces more practical elements in supplements. I mentioned earlier the old Dragon...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 19th April, 2018, 12:52 AM
    Well, there's only so much fiddling you can do with a square that you cannot rotate. I mean, it's not like you have a lot of options here.
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 18th April, 2018, 04:28 PM
    Possibly, as I have no foreknowledge of what your players will think, but Law-Chaos was a dynamic long before Warhammer. There are a number of other systems and settings that draw upon Law-Chaos as well. For example in Tťkumel, the gods are divided between the Gods of Stability and the Gods of Change, thinly veiled Law-Chaos themes. So it is really a question of how you approach the conflict...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 18th April, 2018, 12:59 PM
    In general, avoid shallow, monolithic depictions of in-game cultures. If you want to draw upon real world cultures, be reflective of why you are drawing on particular cultures and what in particular are you drawing from them. Be conscientious about what and how you are incorporating cultures, and how you are portraying those cultures in the wider context of the in-game world. I am a fan of...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 18th April, 2018, 05:30 AM
    Totally agree. But the game says that you are tired and therefore suffer disadvantage to all skill checks. Interpreting that as grumpy isnít all that unreasonable. The game says that you believe the deception. The game says you donít see the ninjas. The game says that you find the argument compelling. You are not your character. You are trying to role play that character. Which means...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 18th April, 2018, 04:57 AM
    Thatís just it, no he isnít. Heís telling you that x is true. You believe the lie, you donít see the ninja, you find the argument very compelling to the point where you agree with it, you are grumpy because you are tired. Now, given that information, what do you do? This massive pile of straw you folks are building doesnít carry any water. The dm is no more portraying your character...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 18th April, 2018, 04:47 AM
    I really liked it. For one itís almost impossible to find something I want to watch with my kids so this hits the right spot right there. And it was fun. Weíve only watched the first episode but we seem to be hooked.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 18th April, 2018, 04:38 AM
    Well, technically no he canít since you need to be able to see to target by RAW, no? But yeah, itís maaaaaaaagic just flies straight up my nose.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 18th April, 2018, 04:35 AM
    Which would be all well and good except that in play itís a pretty rare dm that just flat out whacks the pc. Meh, Iím not a huge believer in the divide as I used to be. I have no problems with players stepping into the dms role from time to time and taking control of the game. Nor do I have a particular issue with the dm forcing particular situations. As I said, to me itís the mark of a...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 17th April, 2018, 12:21 PM
    For me, it's needlessly mickey mouse. And, again, this is a proud nail thing for me, so, it's not entirely rational. :D But, think about it. You need to hit a point 50 feet away from you that is exactly 20 feet away from point A and 25 feet from point B. And the wizard can do it EVERY time. We don't allow fighters to do that. But, as soon as it's maaaaaaagic, then it's perfectly fine? ...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 17th April, 2018, 04:38 AM
    Not really though. It's not the square that's the problem, it's the notion that you can manipulate the square to the point where you can use what is effectively a grenade as a sniper weapon. Fixed squares solves all those shenanigans.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 17th April, 2018, 04:37 AM
    Cue the peanut gallery swooping in to tell us that WotC is a total failure at business and they should be banging out books as fast as possible. :p
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Monday, 16th April, 2018, 05:26 PM
    Supposedly you can learn a language with conversant profiency with three months of full language immersion. But this would also mean that you would potentially be considered an idiot for at least your first three months of time travel. And this does not take into account the possibilities for multiple language proficiencies required for conversing back to any given hypothetical "King Arthurs...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Monday, 16th April, 2018, 04:04 PM
    Although I am not the biggest fan of having Gruumsh cleric in this context, there is nevertheless some undoubtable roleplaying opportunities present that are worth exploring. The elf player, for example, can push back against the Gruumsh cleric. "You do realize that your god wants to kill us (elves, humans, dwarves) right?" Or here are all the pleasant things that your deity would advocate...
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  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Monday, 16th April, 2018, 02:37 PM
    My party just arrived in Omu after 8 sessions. They didn't stay in Nyanzaru very long and took Inete as their guide. They stopped at Camp Righteous and Camp Vengeance along the way (they took a canoe down), then went straight for the Aldani Basin. They went ahead and climbed M'bala to get the lay of the land (encountering Nanny Pu'pu, who escaped after forcing the group to fight her flying...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Monday, 16th April, 2018, 02:07 PM
    I was hoping to propose that term, only to wake up to discover the thread was closed. But if I do have a problem with the term "race," then I should practice what I preach and use alternative terms in my parlance. Potentially yes. But I would wager that "wipe them all out" is more core to the theology and dogmatic teachings of one deity than to the other. To the best of my knowledge, however,...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Monday, 16th April, 2018, 11:46 AM
    Presumbably because selecting a deity for the cleric is more tertiary in character creation than basic bioform-class combo, and the cleric is selecting a deity that would hypothetically bring them into conflict with the elf character. It's about like picking to play a minority and then your cleric picks a racial supremacist deity. I don't think that is the case. The fundamental issue is not...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 15th April, 2018, 11:48 PM
    It's kinda funny. I have no idea how to knap flint. I don't. Never done it. A neolithic farmer certainly would have that knowledge. However, there's a bit that's being ignored. I DO know what knapping flint is, and, in a very broad way (you whack one rock with another) have some idea how it might be done. Flip it around, and that neolithic farmer would have zero ability to conceptualize...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 15th April, 2018, 11:44 AM
    Yeah it wouldnít break my heart to see this class lose heavy armour. Maybe a bonus proficiency or tool.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 15th April, 2018, 11:41 AM
    Iíd just like to say that this thread has made a really productive and interesting left turn. Thanks people.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 15th April, 2018, 11:34 AM
    On the other hand, that Neolithic farmer wouldnít have the first clue about any place more than maybe a few dozen miles away. The modern farmer has a pretty decent working knowledge of mist of the entire planet.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 15th April, 2018, 03:21 AM
    But pemerton, expecting mechanics to somehow align your personal feelings with the characterís is virtually impossible. Or at least extremely difficult. To me, being able to immerse yourself in a role to the point where you react AS that character is the best part of role play. Itís extremely hard for Bob to actually scare me at the table but I donít find it insipid at all when a player...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 15th April, 2018, 01:54 AM
    The truly funny thing is, while my group absolutely insists on pixelated fireballs, they have zero problem with movement being 1:1. GARGH!H!HH! Makes my inner geek rage. I get that 1:2:1 is more accurate than 1:1, but, if you're just going to cross the streams, then someone's getting wet.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 15th April, 2018, 01:21 AM
    I gotta admit that this is one of my proud nail moments in 5e. I hate it when casters do it. It just bugs the heck out of me. I think it's cheesy. Yes, it's perfectly fine by the rules, but... well... my but isn't all that rational and I think I might be talking out of it. :D I do think that 4e had the right of it. 1:1 counting and be done with it. Yes, for the 2 seconds that a fireball...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 14th April, 2018, 11:49 PM
    Because by letting the dice do it players are forced to react in new and unexpected ways which gets to the heart of role play. If the player always determines his or her own reaction then it becomes predictable and frankly boring.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 14th April, 2018, 01:59 PM
    Whereas I view that sort of thing as filling time because the writers donít want to be bothered with the hard stuff like plot and character development.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 14th April, 2018, 01:56 PM
    Fair enough but, by far the same token, thatís precisely how deception works in the game. Your ďdisbeliefĒ dc is set by your Insight skill. Whatever you the player might think, your character believes the lie if you fail to beat the opposed check. And for persuasion it could easily be an opposed check. Your wisdom vs persuasion or something like that. The mechanics are there already. I...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 14th April, 2018, 09:10 AM
    How far back is Solo supposed to be set?
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 14th April, 2018, 09:08 AM
    I guess I donít really see the distinction between the player setting the DC and the game doing the same. After all, isnít that what opposed checks do? Set the DC? So if itís okay for the player to set a dc, why canít the rules do the same? And your third point about there being a disparity between the player and the character, to me thatís the point of role play. Iím not my character....
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 14th April, 2018, 07:57 AM
    That's largely how I look at it. Take the old Dragon Magazine articles "Ecology of..". Now, these were a ton of fun to read. I really enjoyed them. But, from a practical standpoint, they were about as useful as a rubber hammer. The articles ran about 3000 words - about four to six pages or so by and large. Now, imagine, for a second that the "Ecology of" articles were written by me. The...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 14th April, 2018, 07:47 AM
    I have to admit, I'm nowhere near as fixated on specific warlord designs as you seem to be. So long as the character is providing attacks, more than about 1/2 the time which is about what a battlmaster can do now, provides some healing, about the level of a paladin, and provides some means of granting other actions, I'm good. You've kinda painted yourself into a corner with this insistance...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 14th April, 2018, 12:37 AM
    I dunno Tony. I look at his solution and see something that's 99% of the way there. I really don't think that these quite complicated classes are the way to go. A couple of minor additions to the Battlemaster and we're good to go.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 13th April, 2018, 09:14 AM
    You didn't like Rogue One? I adored it. So did my kids. Probably the best Star Wars movie to date, IMO.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 13th April, 2018, 06:32 AM
    And that's fair enough. But, unlike Imaro, I think that whenever this sort of thing comes up, I see the exact opposite of what he does- the basic advice is always world building first. If you're a good DM, you're going to world build and anyone who doesn't spend the time doing it is, by implication anyway, a bad DM. Like was said earlier, to me, it's a red flag. I've almost never enjoyed...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Thursday, 12th April, 2018, 01:34 PM
    From the perspective of my own experiences, I would suggest that the quote is less a matter of "worldbuilding is bad," but, rather, it is a matter of "too much self-indulgent worldbuilding can be a red flag for other issues." So the entire enterprise of worldbuilding must be approached with some degree of cautionary self-awareness. In itself, worldbuilding does not lead to railroading. As you...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 11th April, 2018, 12:47 PM
    Who said anything about home brewers? Doesn't really matter IME. Home brewer or published setting - DM's who spend extended efforts in world building make games that I don't want to play in. And, honestly, the same goes for fiction. My favorite genre fiction is short story or maybe novelette. Full length fantasy novel? Outside of a couple of authors, I haven't read a full length fantasy...
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 11th April, 2018, 12:05 PM
    Reading backwards to get a sense for this conversation, I am now intrigued by what Eero Tuovinen wrote in this context, but I am doing a terrible job finding the article that others are referencing. Do you or pemerton have the link available?
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 11th April, 2018, 11:19 AM
    I don't pretend to know what "they" want. And, frankly, you have no idea either. That would be true IF people had unlimited time. Unfortunately, most of us don't. And, I've seen far, far too many DM's who mistake world building for campaign. We used to call them "Tour Des Realms" games where all you do is wander around making the appropriate oohing and awwing noises over the wonderful...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 11th April, 2018, 06:37 AM
    But, 90% of the FR material has little or nothing to do with the Sword coast. And it certainly isn't needed to play nor is it particularly even referenced. 2e, 3e and 4e banged out source book after source book and none of those editions came anywhere near what 5e is doing. Now, I'm certainly not going to say that lack of world building is the primary, only or even a main reason. There are...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 11th April, 2018, 05:42 AM
    Just a point about would D&D be as popular without the world building. I'd offer a counter example: 5e D&D. Arguably the most popular or at least in the top 2 versions of D&D. Yet, the entire 5e line consists of what, 8 campaign length modules, a single (fairly short) setting guide, and a character option book. Not a lot of world building going on there. It's a far, far more practical...
    1529 replies | 51557 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 11th April, 2018, 04:56 AM
    I guess for me I do draw a distinction between worlds building and setting building. And there is no hard line between them. One shades into the other. For me, setting is anything you need. You have throat warbler mangroves in your game? Cool. Those need to be defined and in doing so lore will be added to the game. Of course. However three thousand word essays a la Dragon magazine...
    1529 replies | 51557 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 11th April, 2018, 04:44 AM
    So, to sum up, the reason against changing the word is a slippery slope fallacy without any actual supporting evidence. There is no evidence that previous changes, like lizard folk , have had any negative impact so claims of ďthin edge of the wedgeĒ seem rather disingenuous considering changes that have already been made and accepted.
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  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 10th April, 2018, 11:44 AM
    You missed an option: mostly an aesthetic choice that players desire to confer some mechanical advantage that justifies and rationalizes that aesthetic choice.
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 10th April, 2018, 04:47 AM
    That doesn't work in the same round. You cannot cast bonus action spells with anything other than a cantrip. So, you could do Healing Word to grant the attack, after you dropped, say, a Sacred Flame. Or, as a nice combo, Healing Word plus Toll the Dead. But, no, your combo doesn't work.
    65 replies | 4411 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 10th April, 2018, 04:00 AM
    I was more referring to official canon. 4e got absolutely crucified for not following earlier edition canon (even when it actually DID follow earlier canon, people insisted that their interpretations of earlier canon were canonical). The canon police come out of the woodwork as soon as any change is proposed - "You can't change this because in some article in Dragon 128, this random author...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 9th April, 2018, 11:46 PM
    Viewing this thread in light of events of the past several years, pretty much demonstrates to me that world building is far more negative than positive. It's limiting to creativity because, once you start with all the world building and accumulating all that game lore, people become EXTREMELY attached to it and will fight tooth and nail to prevent any and all changes to that lore. IOW, world...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 9th April, 2018, 10:00 PM
    Is that a bad thing?
    1101 replies | 21007 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 9th April, 2018, 02:30 PM
    That looks like a whole bunch of fun.
    25 replies | 515 view(s)
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Wednesday, 25th April, 2018

  • 05:28 PM - Ovinomancer mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    ... that you were sliding into accusing others of bad motivations (zealotry isn't something that would garner the description of a good motivation, after all). Your response doubled-down on the charged terms, which shorted out any good points you were making. If your contention is merely that people can and will respond emotionally, I think our recent exchange clearly shows that to be true. I feel, however, that this cuts even more towards my advice that people clearly define their term usages and even try to adopt non-conflicted terminology rather than continue to war over the ownership of a contested word. A war which, largely, your response to my other post below continues. But this runs both ways. There are others who are using it an incredibly general way and others still who are insisting that the conversation adhere to their definition, whether narrower or broader. But being a "generally vague" sense should not equate to the "commonly understood" way. And I think that Hussar's sense of "worldbuilding" runs much closer to the common parole than the more generally broad way in which "worldbuilding" is everything created under the sun. Hussar's usage of the term is evident in sheer preponderance and character of written and video articles found throughout the Internet on worldbuilding tips, advice, guidance, etc. The character of this term's usage is more particularized to a set of activities that often transpire on a different level than a world that emerges through play. The most common sense of the term frames worldbuilding as an authorial pre-emergent fiction activity. And yet there are others who are also insisting on their definition or understanding, so putting this burden on pemerton or Hussar seems shortsighted, as this demand does not seem placed on others but just them. If as you say, everyone is insisting on a different definition of "stupid," then it seems a bit odd that you are admonishing one group for "redefining" a term while not admonis...
  • 05:00 PM - hawkeyefan mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    ... the extreme of working out entire constructed languages. Authors typically revise constructed worlds to complete a single work in a series. 2) The work that goes into deciding the details of a setting. It's very difficult to write a story that contains absolutely no imaginary elements beyond what's described to the reader, so nearly every author worldbuilds a little bit. Some, however, go above and beyond the call of duty in that regard, in which case the sheer amount of detail not immediately relevant to the story at hand often serves as a major distinguishing point of their work. Extra worldbuilding that is only referred to obliquely is a Cryptic Background Reference. Over the course of a long running series or large persistent universe such as an MMORPG, these add up to form what is sometimes known as the "invisible book"- the portion of a story which becomes known over time without ever actually being directly described." So I don't think the definition as put forth by Hussar is as common as he wants it to be. I think the actual term is far broader. Now, that doesn't mean that I don't understand the gripe that Hussar and the OP and others who agree have with excessive worldbuilding done by a GM prior to play. I can understand that criticism, and I can agree that the GM is likely better served by spending that time on more relevant aspects of their game. But I think the real question is....where is that line? At what point is it too excessive? Sure, we can site The Silmarillion as being a bit much. The example of Village of Hommlett is a good one for the purposes of this discussion. But they also lean toward the extreme. What would be a more subtle example? Where do people draw that line? Obviously, some don't draw it at all....but I think most of us do at some point. Where?
  • 04:11 PM - Aldarc mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    ...em at hand. One way I have commonly seen the argument discredited amounts in paraphrase to "you can't criticize worldbuilding because everything is worldbuilding." Another has been on insisting that the vaguely general sense of the word's meaning is somehow the most "accepted" one over against its more particularized and connotative sense in common parlance. So, if you want to use worldbuilding in a specific way, then you need to be very clear about your definition. If your definition differs fruition the generally accepted, you will get pushback because your introducing confusion by redefining a word. It's often helpful to establish a new term that clearly indicates your meaning.But this runs both ways. There are others who are using it an incredibly general way and others still who are insisting that the conversation adhere to their definition, whether narrower or broader. But being a "generally vague" sense should not equate to the "commonly understood" way. And I think that Hussar's sense of "worldbuilding" runs much closer to the common parole than the more generally broad way in which "worldbuilding" is everything created under the sun. Hussar's usage of the term is evident in sheer preponderance and character of written and video articles found throughout the Internet on worldbuilding tips, advice, guidance, etc. The character of this term's usage is more particularized to a set of activities that often transpire on a different level than a world that emerges through play. The most common sense of the term frames worldbuilding as an authorial pre-emergent fiction activity. Insisting others accept your definition is fine in a paper or blog post, where you can define and expound, but in a multiuser discussion format you it's an impediment.And yet there are others who are also insisting on their definition or understanding, so putting this burden on pemerton or Hussar seems shortsighted, as this demand does not seem placed on others but just them. If as you...
  • 03:28 PM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    Are you really advocating anyone use terms willy nilly to say things as they wish because it shouldn't matter to anyone else because presumably no-one else is at their table and therefore no objection is warranted? Is that really the type of discussion you're wanting to promote?What I'm asking is that if you are doing the stuff that Hussar doesn't call "worldbuilding", which is also the stuff he is quite happy with it (eg B2), why would you care that he doesn't use a particular label? And conversely, if you're doing the stuff that he doesn't like, and which he does call "worldbuilding" (eg T1), why does it matter that he doesn't apply that same label to the stuff he does like? I mean, given that there's stuff he does like that he's trying to distinguish the stuff that a T1-er does, it's no surprise that he uses different terms for the two sorts of thing. Following on from the previous paragraph: suppose that you persuade Hussar to call B2 as well as T1 worldbuilding. That's not going to make him like T1 any better! He's still going to be critical of it, and - by implication - of the work of those who do that sort of thing themselves. Isn't it those critical differences that are of interest here, rather than the particular terminology being used?
  • 02:53 PM - Ovinomancer mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    If all of one's "worldbuidling" resembles KotB rather than Village of Hommlet, then Hussar has no objection to it. What does it matter than he doesn't call it worldbuilding, and confines that word to the stuff you don't do? Conversely, if some of what you do is more like VoH than KotB, Hussar has said he doesn't like it. What does it matter to you that he doesn't use the term "worldbuilding" to describe the stuff he doesn't mind?Communication of ideas. If I define stupid you mean "those with an IQ of less than 135" and you defined out as "those with an IQ less than 85" and Bob defines it as "people who think differently from me" then we cannot habe a useful discussion about stupidity if we all keep using the same word for it. Outside of that discussion, however, your free to use it giver you want. If you purpose is actual discussion and understandibg, though, confusion of meaning because you all define a term differently is actively harmful to the goal. So, if you want to use worldbuilding in a specific way, then you need to be very clear about your definition. If your...
  • 02:30 PM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    If all of one's "worldbuidling" resembles KotB rather than Village of Hommlet, then Hussar has no objection to it. What does it matter than he doesn't call it worldbuilding, and confines that word to the stuff you don't do? Conversely, if some of what you do is more like VoH than KotB, Hussar has said he doesn't like it. What does it matter to you that he doesn't use the term "worldbuilding" to describe the stuff he doesn't mind?
  • 02:05 PM - Maxperson mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    I don't think that is redefining the term "worldbuilding" at all, but, rather, that his use reflects an understanding of the most prevalent performative mode of activity that "worldbuilding" takes in common parlance.Except that it doesn't. Worldbuilding is just building a world, which includes all acts that would be involved with that. There has never been a need to build a complete world. Let's look at all of the worlds that TSR and WotC have created. Athas was never built in its entirety. I don't think Krynn was built in its entirety. Oerth was not built in its entirety. Faerun was not built in its entirety. Worldbuilding in an RPG hasn't ever required building an entire planet like Hussar is trying to claim. It can be as small as a city-state and as large as a planet.
  • 01:51 PM - Maxperson mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    I don't think that these are necessarily "bad motives," but I do think that they are sympathetically human ones. "False equivalence" and "zealotry" do not have to be done out of "malice or mischief" for them to transpire. People who enjoy the broader project of fictive world creation obviously don't enjoy being told that their "hobby project" may not be warranted, productive, or even healthy when it comes to storytelling, whether that comes in the form of written fiction or collaborative play. Nevertheless, the reaction is one of religious defense, and the apologists do engage in a lot of equivocation of what "worldbuilding" entails such that one cannot criticize "worldbuilding" without criticizing every aspect of the "expanding in-game fiction." But that is not the intent. Though "worldbuilding" does have a much broader sense, @Hussar also linked to a series of discussed definitions (i.e., Wikipedia, TV Tropes, Miriam Webster Dictionary) that suggest a more restricted connotative usage that does reflect the usage of the OP and critics of worldbuilding. That's not happening, though. If @Hussar had simply said that he prefers to worldbuild on a small scale and that he feels that large scale worldbuilding is a waste of his time, people could be discussing the differences. Instead, he's trying to re-define what worldbuilding is in order to paint the whole of worldbuilding in a bad light. Now you're joining him by attacking the character of people who are simply saying, "Hey, stop with the attempt to re-define worldbuilding and just discuss what you like and don't like to do WHEN worldbuilding."
  • 10:16 AM - Aldarc mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    ... posters to define worldbuilding in a way tgat speed their preferences rather than to achieve a consensus on the use of the term. This cuts against both sides.I don't think that these are necessarily "bad motives," but I do think that they are sympathetically human ones. "False equivalence" and "zealotry" do not have to be done out of "malice or mischief" for them to transpire. People who enjoy the broader project of fictive world creation obviously don't enjoy being told that their "hobby project" may not be warranted, productive, or even healthy when it comes to storytelling, whether that comes in the form of written fiction or collaborative play. Nevertheless, the reaction is one of religious defense, and the apologists do engage in a lot of equivocation of what "worldbuilding" entails such that one cannot criticize "worldbuilding" without criticizing every aspect of the "expanding in-game fiction." But that is not the intent. Though "worldbuilding" does have a much broader sense, Hussar also linked to a series of discussed definitions (i.e., Wikipedia, TV Tropes, Miriam Webster Dictionary) that suggest a more restricted connotative usage that does reflect the usage of the OP and critics of worldbuilding. Finally, my comment in setting building was that, absent clarification, i would not have assumed setting building was different from worldbuilding. It was not a rejection of setting building as a specific subset of worldbuilding activities, just a comment that it wasn't inherently obvious it referred to different things. Perhaps i could have been more clear about this at the time, and that's a criticism I'll take. But, at no time was I saying that such a term couldn't be usefully defined abd used to further conversation -- again, just that it wasnt obviously different without further definition. I apologise for any confusion.Thank you for that clarification. It was unclear from your initial comments.

Tuesday, 24th April, 2018

  • 05:02 PM - Aldarc mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    ...you should expect. The best of intentions will get overcome by multiple unique definitions of the same word in that case.Forgetting their sense of the term is fine. When that happens, they may remind you or you may ask. Here, however, you are berating them about using terminology that they are defining and rationalizing. Also, this works both ways -- why should the other side not be accommodating of the more general use of the word? I find it appropriate to place the burden on the ones that want to change the general use rather than expect those using the general case to make exceptions for the ones that want their own special definitions. This is why I find it best to come up with a specific and hopefully distinctive phrase or word to describe the exact thing you want to discuss. And then repeat that definition often so that you are not misunderstood. The burden to make yourself understood clearly is not on others.The preference you describe is what Campbell did. And when Hussar came up with his "specific and hopefully distinctive phrase or word" to discuss the more specific concept of "setting building," you set about to equate this as being identical with "worldbuilding." So what then does the creation, clarity, and repetition of terms help if there is no intent to honor them?
  • 01:23 PM - Sadras mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    Hussar I'm not understanding your somewhat stubborn dislike to lore/myth whether it be for monsters, setting or cosmology. The lore/myth allows us to have shared experiences and discussions over settings, monsters and modules which is a relatively good thing for the hobby I think. I mean when we were reading the DL novels (I assume you have) and all that setting content came up - regarding gnomes, gully dwarves, death knights, irda and the pantheon it is not considered as a negative. So why the sour bent towards worldbuilding in our rpgs. We are trying to emulate fantasy novels and movies...etc We, the player-base, often change the content (worldbuilding), system (edition) and difficulty (levels) of published adventures so I'm not sure where you seem to see difficulty. There is the other benefit of lore/myth you seem to ignore. When we look at fantasy artwork we gain inspiration and ideas - many of us hobbyists do the same with the lore/myth the publishers provide us with. Giv...

Monday, 23rd April, 2018

  • 07:15 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    The discussions in this thread aren't primarily semantic. They are about real differences of approach to RPGing. As far as I know, Hussar has played a wide variety of RPGs, including "indie" ones like DitV and DW. Judging from his posts (in this thread, but also over the years in other threads) he is also fairly happy with a rather GM-driven game, where the GM establishes "objective" obstacles and the players come up with ideas for resolving or circumventing them. But he doesn't like a lot of exposition or epxloration for the sake of it. To me, that seems like a coherent set of tastes. My tastes are I think) narrower. I don't really care for GM-driven play even of the "overcome obstacles" variety. It seems that some other posters in this thread enjoy the sort of exposition and exploration that Hussar does not. That's a long way from my tastes, but it's in the nature of tastes to vary! From my point of view, the issues of contention in this thread are not claims about what is desirable (although that's how the thread title frames it), but what is possible. Eg is it possible to have meaningful RPGing without wo...

Saturday, 21st April, 2018

  • 03:45 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Game Mechanics And Player Agency
    One of the core examples thru this thread has bern does the duke convince your character to take the mission". If you say you have not sern anyone here who was for social mechanics workong on pcs who was also for that being possible, i am not gonna go back and ferret them out for you.Well, I'm not goint to go back and ferret them out either. Hussar hasn't embraced the example. I already pointed to the most developed concrete proposal in this thread for incorporating social considerations in to 5e by way of Inspiration & Ideals/Bonds/Flaws. I've pointed to other RPGs which have working social resolution systems. I just don't see the point of arguing against a position that has no serious advocates in its favour.

Thursday, 19th April, 2018

  • 02:54 PM - Sadras mentioned Hussar in post Game Mechanics And Player Agency
    ... would take them in the opposite direction. In-game the discussion between the two groups got very heated. The PCs made the argument to the NPCs that they should abandon their homestead and return to the nearby city for safety given that many (if not all the nearby homesteads) had been destroyed and the goblin threat still loomed in the area. This was a decent argument by the PCs. The NPCs were not willing to abandon all they had (their homes, their horses and their recently kidnapped loved ones). They were going to form a search party (with or without the help of the PCs). They believed the goblins were in full retreat given their failed attack on the homestead. At what point do I call for a roll? Both the PCs and the NPCs had valid arguments. I preferred not to resolve this through mechanics and I think it was the right call for the emerging storyline. It would have been detrimental to my table if I as DM had forced the PCs into a contested persuasion roll and the PCs had lost. @Hussar can you not see the dilemma one could possibly face with your solution?

Wednesday, 18th April, 2018

  • 09:12 PM - Ovinomancer mentioned Hussar in post Game Mechanics And Player Agency
    ...t to be the focus of the story, but to aid in telling the story. And that's the key, for me -- PCs are the ONLY way the players interact with the game. NPCs are one of many many authorities that the DM controls for the game. Claiming that PCs must be susceptible to the same mechanics as NPCs is saying that the PCs are unimportant in the game, because there are so many more NPCs and the DM has 100% control of them all. Rather, I subscribe to the idea that NPCs are just a tool to frame scenes for the game and are there to provide foils to the PCs, not usurp them. The Prince that wants his daughter rescued is a challenge to the PCs, not a controller of them. If the PCs decide this isn't a challenge they care for, why am I going to force them to go along using a mechanic when it's clear that the players don't want to do that? Do I, as DM, have the right to decide what the players want to play? Rhetorical questions, my answers are 'I wouldn't, that's bad' and 'No, I do not.' Hussar's statement that it's rude of the players to ignore what the DM has prepped by trying to ignore the hook and so he's justified in using mechanics to force them to bite the hook is a social contract problem being addressed in the game -- he should, instead, be talking to his players as players and finding out what assumption mismatches are going on at the table instead of relying on his ability to force a check and tell the players what they're going to play. This is basic game social interaction 101 -- deal with player problems directly with the players and not in the game. And, again, as a note (heh), I used to be on the 'NPCs and PCs should be subject to the mechanics equally' side of this. I came around when I realized that my real issue was trying to recover from failure points in game. If I had a great scenario lined up but it hinged on the PCs taking the quest, and, for whatever reason, I did a bad job selling it, then I was out time and had no prep. So, I thought it shoul...
  • 11:10 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Game Mechanics And Player Agency
    I think that would be a fairly poor mechanic.It would be, but that's how some would see it working in, say, 3e D&D.Part of my point is that the discussion in this thread is somewhat distort by excessive focus on 3E's poor social rules. mechanics - good or poor - aren't needed for this at all; just in-character negotiation.There are all sorts of things for which mechanics aren't needed. The question is whether they might, by some, for some purposes, be wanted. Most reasonable players/PCs would take the mission on, in the fiction either out of altruism or loyalty to the crown or for whatever reward may be in the offing; and at the table because the players want to bite the hook being offered. This I don't agree with at all. (When Hussar said something similar, he described it as an empirical prediction but didn't use the normative language of reasonable.) The whole "hook" model of RPGing is something I don't care for.

Sunday, 15th April, 2018

  • 11:57 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Game Mechanics And Player Agency
    ...human resolve to resist being persuaded of something to which you are adamantly opposed (unless the persuasion itself is somehow also superhuman). If, by choosing your own DC, you are modeling your initial receptiveness/opposition to an idea, then you shouldn't be spending any real resource to do so. Therefore any resource would be a metagame resource, which becomes hard to explain as a real thing. <snip> if it's "You may invoke a detail about your character to increase the DC to be persuaded or intimidated. You may do this as many times as your Wisdom modifier per short rest" then that's fine and fair, but that also makes it a metagame resource not a real resource. And, sure, we can always come up with some justification for why a metagame resource is rooted in some kind of reality, but there wouldn't be huge forum battles raging about martial abilities if there wasn't at least something dissonant about it.So if this wasn't a warlord thread, now it's become one?!?! Given Hussar's optimistic post just above this one, I'll try to keep my deraiing of it to that one comment. So I'll try a different way in: declining the offered beer seems like it might be rude. Does the PC in question have an unlimited capacity for declining polite invitations or requests? In real life, there are innumerable occasions every day in which someone does something not because s/he really wants to but because some sort of social custom or expectation operates to produce the behaviour. A really simple example is greeting someone (whether a nod, a word, a handshake, whatever) in response to that other person's greeting; or perhaps just in response to his/her presence, if that then leads one to offer them a greeting. If we assume that the PCs in a RPG never respond to social cues of this sort, and never participate in the associated practices, unless the player says so, then we're positing incredibly austere, alienated individuals as PCs. Because hardly any of the time is this so...

Tuesday, 10th April, 2018

  • 01:20 PM - Imaro mentioned Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    ...estion) about the relationship between worldbuilding and RPGing. Shared fiction is at the heart of RPGing: the GM describes some situation to the players; the players declare actions for their PCs; those actions are resolved; new fiction is thereby established. What is the relationship between this collective endeavour, and one participant's sole authorship of a whole lot of stories? Isn't this for the gaming group to decide? I mean honestly we have games that run the gamut from sole world authorship by the GM to games that create the world as an equal endeavor shared by all players, so I would assume groups would choose to play games that fit their particular needs. Now whether the flagship game of the hobby should swing one way or the other on this axis is a different question. As it stands 5e has optional rules for co-authorship of the world in the DMG, but I'm not sure I thiknk the game would be be best served by that being the default. OAN, but related I don't think Hussar's proposed fiction less D&D would be anywhere near as popular as D&D currently is, the game is best served (from a sales perspective) in getting people invested in the default lore... for different and experimental lore you have various camapign settings.

Thursday, 5th April, 2018

  • 05:12 AM - FrogReaver mentioned Hussar in post Lets design a Warlord for 5th edition
    So I would do it as an immediate effect instead of an additional superiority dice. Something like: You may give up an attack any time during your attack action to gain a superiority dice that must be immediately used. A few reasons: 1. If you let the fighter gain a superiority dice permanently as Hussar proposed then you risk players fighting a rat or punching another player just to get their max allotment of superiority dice. I don't want to encourage that playstyle. 2. I don't think letting 2 superiority dice apply to the same attack will be problematic, however, it would require a lot of additional rules/rulings to work. So I would try it without that initially. 3. I think we should keep the ability to save superiority dice for hard fights instead of incentivizing players to burn through them immediately. I think this proposal allows that. 4. If our general premise is right that extra attack is nearly equivalent to superiority dice then I don't see an issue with trading any number of attacks we want for dice.

Tuesday, 27th March, 2018

  • 10:17 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post From Dogs to Dragons: Kobold Evolution
    ...ortress? (Like a military trench with machine gun emplacements, barbed wire, etc.) Is it a home? An attempt at both, like a castle? I've got nothing against running a kobold lair as a death trap if that's what someone wants to do, but I find it hard to see it as more "realistic" until some of these questions are addressed. But I think the process of addressing them is really going to kill off a B2-style adventure. If the Caves of Chaos are really a series of well-supplied, well-defended, fortified emplacements, why are we sending 4 relatively ineffectual mercenaries to deal with them? I don't get calculus, so I guess that means that calculus is invalid.Well, I do get 1st ed AD&D. That's why I don't get Tucker's kobolds. If you have a mage of double-digit levels, you go away, spend a day or so resting and memorising, and come back with the spell load-out to destroy them. (The more I think about it, the more I think that an earth elemental would really be a good way to do it.) Hussar suggested that the kobolds would attack with darts - but Protection from Normal Missiles is a 3rd level spell that lasts for 10 minutes per level. Whether it makes for fun play to root out the kobolds I guess is a different question - some people think ToH is the height of dungeon design, while others think that it is a tedious bore that mostly involves a flying scout tied to a rope - but the challenge seems essentially a logistical one (memorising the right spells, and maintaining a blockade in the meantime) rather than something that would sow terror in the hearts of even high level adventurers.


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Wednesday, 25th April, 2018

  • 07:19 AM - billd91 quoted Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    Look, I posted three different sources that all agree on this. World building and setting creation are not the same thing. Not all setting creation is world building. World building is going above and beyond what is required by setting. I've been consistent with my use of the term, and have been consistent in my use going back ten years (since this is a ten year old thread. It's those who want to redefine the term that are the issue here. If you redefine world building to encompass any and all setting construction, then, sure, obviously it's not a bad thing. It can be but it might not be. But, that's YOUR definition and not the commonly accepted one. Nor is that how it's used when used in academic circles to describe second world creation. If that's what you think you've done, you're quite a cherry picker. That wikipedia article you selectively quoted from specifically has a passage about world building as a bottom-up process in which the world is built by focusing on the imme...
  • 07:09 AM - Maxperson quoted Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    No, you're not actually. The commonly accepted use of world building is distinct from setting. I posted three different sources and they all agree that world building =/= setting creation. First, all three of your sources just say that world building is building a world. I posted definitions that say a world can be anything from a single city on up. Second, none of your definitions were about RPGs. They were all about writing fantasy novels and this isn't a discussion about writing fantasy novels, so the definitions you posted don't even apply here. It's like trying to say that forest=1 tree. Now, where a group of trees becomes a forest is vague and undefined. We can't actually say how many trees it takes to make a forest. But, that doesn't make 1 tree plus 1 tree suddenly a forest. Right, that's why I didn't claim one NPC or one building was a world. It takes at least city or other similar sized area.
  • 07:01 AM - Maxperson quoted Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    Yup, just went back over the posts from today and yesterday. other than you specifically agreeing with Maxperson that world building is the same as setting creation, you actually say nothing about how he and you, have redefined the common definition of the word to suit your own argument. Probably because no re-definition happened on our end of things. World has always meant more than just planet. You're the one misconstruing it to only mean planet. Look, I posted three different sources that all agree on this. World building and setting creation are not the same thing. Not all setting creation is world building. World building is going above and beyond what is required by setting. I've been consistent with my use of the term, and have been consistent in my use going back ten years (since this is a ten year old thread. They agree that it builds a world. That's not the same as planet. In the game I mentioned where the campaign was limited to one city, that city was the world...
  • 05:49 AM - Maxperson quoted Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    Wonder if Ovinomancer will be as qick to take Maxperson to task for creativity during definitions. I'm using actual definitions.
  • 05:10 AM - Ovinomancer quoted Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    Wonder if Ovinomancer will be as qick to take Maxperson to task for creativity during definitions. I have, as recently as yesterday. Just so we can get past this part quickly, are there any more flaws of character you'd like to insinuate?
  • 01:52 AM - Maxperson quoted Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    Oh, and Maxperson, are you sure about your definition? Wikipedia gives this one: Mirriam Webster: TV Tropes has the definition I tend to work from: Yuppers, that last one is pretty much my exact take. World building is when you go beyond the needs of the story. And very, very much of it is for its own sake. Yep! Positive. This is what you are missing. world wərld/Submit noun noun: world; noun: the world 1. the earth, together with all of its countries, peoples, and natural features. a) all of the people, societies, and institutions on the earth. b) denoting one of the most important or influential people or things of its class. c) another planet like the earth. d) the material universe or all that exists; everything. 2. a part or aspect of human life or of the natural features of the earth, in particular. a) a region or group of countries. b) a period of history. c) a group of living things. d) the people, places, and activities to do w...
  • 12:40 AM - Ovinomancer quoted Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    Ovinomancer - I'd point out that the definition of world building that I'm using, which is setting building above and beyond the needs of story - is the accepted definition of the term. Those insisting that world building=anything to do with setting are the ones that are needlessly broadening the term. You cannot complain about me using an idiosyncratic definition of the word when I'm actually using the generally accepted definition. IOW, why aren't you complaining about everyone else who is using the term wrong. Yes, I saw that you read those definitions and interpreted them in... interesting ways, but that doesn't mean that your reading is the accepted definition. In fact, if you actually read the rest of that wikipedia article rather than the limit bit you quoted, it covers quite a large swath of what's been talked about in this thread. Apparently, worldbuilding is a rather broad term. By-the-by the Merriam Webster quote is from a entry in their words to watch blog, where the...

Tuesday, 24th April, 2018

  • 09:29 PM - Lanefan quoted Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    Yeah, I saw first hand how much new ideas could get past the gate keepers with 4e, thanks. Some new ideas from 4e hung around for 5e, because they were generally seen as good ideas. Many new ideas from 4e did not hang around for 5e, because they were generally seen as bad ideas. The "gatekeepers" you refer to are filtering by quality and general usefulness, not by recency. :) Yuppers, that last one is pretty much my exact take. World building is when you go beyond the needs of the story. And very, very much of it is for its own sake.Problem is, when designing a world ahead of time - as in, before the start of play - one has no real way of knowing* what will fall within the story and what will be beyond it until the campaign is over, however long later that may be. I don't necessarily know where the campaign is eventually going to take us before it starts, but I want things to be at least vaguely prepped (even just some scratch notes and a map!) so that no matter where things go I'v...
  • 07:56 PM - Satyrn quoted Hussar in post Diagonal area of spells
    Yup, this is the part that just flies straight up my nose. Because, when you shoot into that crowd, you suffer attack penalties and you STILL need to successfully strike. But I can pick a point 150 feet away from me, with no markers, no points of aiming, that is exactly 25 feet away from point A and 20 feet away from point B without any check, while running and dodging attacks. Because Maaaaaaagic. Blarg. I picture it this way: While casting the spell, the wizard can see a shadowy outline of the spell's area and move it about before triggering the actual effect. Sort of like a laser guided rocket (if they work like TV tells me) - or like how Hyperion's mortars work in Borderlands 2.
  • 06:12 PM - Ovinomancer quoted Hussar in post Game Mechanics And Player Agency
    Nice. Because only petulant DM's would ever do this. :uhoh: Careful, your biases are showing. Why would you think I wasn't being careful or that I wanted to not show my biases? Never minding the vast number of games out there where you can absolutely do this, not only can you do it, but you, as the GM/DM are EXPECTED to do it. Good grief, could you imagine trying to run Call of Cthulhu without sanity rules? Or a Fate game where your DM can never, ever use your Aspects. Again, I'm absolutely baffled at the push back here. There's a host of games out there that do this and there's certainly no need to characterize all the GM's of those games as "petulant". The "but thers anther game out there where this might happen" argument is lazy. Especially when you misrepresent the ones you pick. Sanity effects are a consequence of player declared actions, not things the NPCs roll against the PCs to force them to do things. Aspect use in FATE can be negated by the player if they don't agre...
  • 06:01 PM - the Jester quoted Hussar in post Hidden
  • 05:52 PM - Tony Vargas quoted Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    Yeah, I saw first hand how much new ideas could get past the gate keepers with 4e, thanks. Good grief, 5e hasn't had an original module yet. Three years of rehashes of existing modules. Yeah, new ideas are what gamers want. Sure. Limiting it to D&D - the first RPG, the 500lb australopithecus robustus, the biggest coelacanth in the small pond - sure, change, even (or especially) change arguably for the better, is anathema, it has to be very measured, very carefully vetted. But in the broader hobby, for those aware of it, innovation has been going on from the earliest days. Sometimes, maybe, it's the same innovation popping up again and again because no one saw it the first n times.... Yuppers, that last one is pretty much my exact take. World building is when you go beyond the needs of the story. And very, very much of it is for its own sake. I'm OK with worldbuilding for it's own sake, at least when I'm doing it, because it's an engaging exercise. It might sit there, inform...
  • 05:34 PM - happyhermit quoted Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    ... No, not overly dramatic. You folks won this fight years ago. The fact that authors like George R. R. Martin and Tolkien are heralded as the masters of the genre. The fact that umpteen game supplements get banged out every year chock a block with world building details. The fact that you actually, at one time, HAD a six page article on the WotC site detailing the SHAPE OF WINDOWS in Forgotten Realms and people ate it up. Yeah, I know I'm whistling in the dark here. I lost this fight years ago. Now, it's nothing but me bitching about it futilely like the impotent jerk that I am. :( I think I understand where you are coming from in some respects. I generally find discussion of planar cosmology and such to be tedious. Hearing other people discuss the details and differences between World Axis and Great Wheel, different versions of the Great Wheel , even in some cases how one version or another "ruined" a system or setting for them is strange. The idea that this is so important to the...
  • 01:46 PM - billd91 quoted Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    Fair enough, again, if you are insisting that all setting is world building. However, I would draw the distinction here. KotB has virtually no world building. We have no idea where the Keep is, how many people live in the Keep, what and who supports the Keep, who does the Castellan report to? No idea. Does the Castellan have a family? No idea. So on and so forth. Contrast with Village of Hommlet where virtually every household is described. Who is the weaver in Hommlet? Well, we have the answer to that. Yeah, Hommlet is a lot more detailed. You could have said that you found that level of worldbuilding excessive and not what you favored and left it like that. See, to me, the world builders have already won this arguement and I'm largely crying in the dark here. Look at the remake of Keep in Return to the Keep on the Borderlands. A 20(ish) page module is turned into a several hundred page tome. Even in 4e, when they remade Keep again with the Chaos Scar adventures in Du...
  • 01:18 PM - Maxperson quoted Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    See, this is the main part where we diverge. I wouldn't call that world building. There's no world there. There's absolutely no attempt to present a functional reality there. Which is what worldbuilding IS - an attempt to present a functioning model of a setting. Keep doesn't do that. It presents the bare bones of what a DM needs to run an adventure there. With virtually no details or extraneous information. That is not what I'd call world building. No, functional as you put it here is no required for worl building. No functional reality need be present. Worldbuilding is simply the creation of the setting, however complete or incomplete it is. The creation of a single NPC is an act of worldbuilding. I would also argue that the bare bones of what you need to run an adventure there IS a functional reality. You can buy a car that barely runs, or one that is fully loaded and both are functional cars. That one has more functions doesn't keep the car that barely runs from being fun...
  • 12:44 PM - Ovinomancer quoted Hussar in post Game Mechanics And Player Agency
    But, it's not an exemplar of anything other than this strange straw man that people insist on building. No one has actually argued in favor of a single die roll changing PC's minds. The closest might be morale checks, but, even then, those only come into play after considerable other events have occurred.Well, then, how many checks do you think it should take before the GM can tell the layer what their character thinks?
  • 11:58 AM - Maxperson quoted Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    Fair enough, again, if you are insisting that all setting is world building. Yes, he's probably going with the definition of worldbuilding. However, I would draw the distinction here. KotB has virtually no world building. We have no idea where the Keep is, how many people live in the Keep, what and who supports the Keep, who does the Castellan report to? No idea. Does the Castellan have a family? No idea. So on and so forth. It actually has a lot of worldbuilding. You don't have to have every last freaking detail down for worldbuilding to be occurring. In fact, the most detailed world/setting I know is the FR, and it only details at most 5% of the world. Contrast with Village of Hommlet where virtually every household is described. Who is the weaver in Hommlet? Well, we have the answer to that. Yep. More worldbuilding done in that one for sure. See, to me, the world builders have already won this arguement and I'm largely crying in the dark here. Look at ...
  • 08:48 AM - happyhermit quoted Hussar in post Why Worldbuilding is Bad
    ... And the great clodding of nerd boots makes sure that no new ideas are ever allowed into the hobby unless it passes their sniff test first. Methinks you are tilting at windmills a bit here. There are all kinds of materials out there for all kinds of RPGs and while D&D does get looked down on a lot in some circles, there is exceedingly little in way of "that shouldn't even exist" or even "that type of game is objectively bad". Certainly not any masses such as they are in ttrpgs. New ideas have always been allowed in "the hobby" even if a lot of people don't enjoy them. Heck, look at this whole "story now" discussion here. People act like it's this new discovery that if only the masses were exposed to would sweep over them like the dawning of a new age of enlightenment. In reality, we messed around playing D&D and other games like that soon after the hobby came into existence. Plenty of games have worked to codify and tweak it in the decades since. There are literally options in the 5e D...
  • 07:31 AM - aramis erak quoted Hussar in post Game Mechanics And Player Agency
    Why are we still arguing that one single DM roll can change the PC's minds? Does anyone actually think that this is what we're talking about? It's the clearest exemplar of the divide in the actual underlying debate.
  • 05:03 AM - cmad1977 quoted Hussar in post Amazon: D&D at the start of 2018
    Cue the peanut gallery swooping in to tell us that WotC is a total failure at business and they should be banging out books as fast as possible. :p This edition is dying in the vine. Wotc must cater to the Ďgamistsí More product on the shelves means more success because: reasons.


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