View Profile: Hussar - Morrus' Unofficial Tabletop RPG News
Tab Content
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Today, 05:09 AM
    This is the problem when you try to apply game elements (class, level) to world building. It just doesn't really work. I know that's a crappy answer, but, there it is. Given the massive increase in personal capability that comes with even a small handful of levels, plus the plethora of economy breaking spells, a world built from D&D rules would be nonsensical. Of course, never minding the...
    25 replies | 360 view(s)
    3 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Today, 05:00 AM
    No. Absolutely not. I have defined what I meant by literary numerous times. I have been explicitly clear about what I consider to be literary. Time to pony up. Do you mean literary as "high art" or simply "something found in fiction writing"?
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Today, 03:27 AM
    Yeah. Again, the last six or seven pages of this "discussion" has all been because folks absolutely refuse to pin down what definition of "literary" they would like us to use. If Literary=high art, then this discussion is, for all intents and purposes, over because we all agree that RPGing isn't meant to be high art. So, Bedrockgames, Aldarc, and anyone else who cares to weigh in, would...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Today, 03:18 AM
    Sigh. Just because it exists in film, does not suddenly make it "not literary". Where do you think film gets it from?
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Today, 01:40 AM
    Not quite. "Many treat movies, T.V. and plays" not so much as "literary," but, rather, as 'text,' which is a distinction that actual literary theorists do care about. And understanding these media as texts is more of a metaphorical/analogical understanding than a literal one. We should not confuse/equivocate the metaphorical sense for the literal here. We speak metaphorically, for example, of...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Today, 12:55 AM
    But hopefully we can recognize that RPGs exist as far more than their rulebooks, much as cooking is more than the recipes and sports are more than their rulebooks.
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Yesterday, 07:34 PM
    It makes RPGs literature to the extent that recipes make cooking literature or a rulebook for the NBA makes basketball literature. But I think that we can recognize that RPGs, cooking, and basketball are defined by more than their associated literature.
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Yesterday, 04:57 PM
    We are not debating whether or not these are notions found in literature, Max. The issue is when people argue that the presence of these elements identify a thing as being "literary." Yes, they ARE literary notions, but they are notions also found in other media and not exclusive to literature. We cannot categorically assert that because RPGs can share these overlapping notions that RPGs are...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Yesterday, 03:41 PM
    We also think about pacing when cooking, but I would not call TTRPGS cooking either. :erm: At times the argumentation in this conversation feels like people are insisting that because cakes are made using flour and eggs that making pasta ergo is baking a cake.
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Yesterday, 10:40 AM
    But these are not distinctly literary notions. Pacing, character development, and tone, etc. all exist within film media, for example, but these are not regarded as "literary." This is a categorical issue.
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:42 AM
    Really, you are not concerned about narrative techniques? At all? So, when you create a situation, things like tone, pacing, mood, character development, exposition, and a host of other things are not a concern at all? You create adventures like that random dungeon I posted a few pages back and you're good to go? Yeah, didn't think so. While I can see the point of RPGing =/= literary...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:37 AM
    Yup. And an RPG without performance or any sort of eye towards literary notions like pacing, character development, tone, etc, is a board game.
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Saturday, 25th May, 2019, 04:10 PM
    And then he began smoking and drinking because all the older kids were doing it too.
    205 replies | 6621 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Saturday, 25th May, 2019, 04:01 PM
    I would truncate and streamline the 4E gameplay, learning a lot (ironically enough) from the innovations of the OSR and PbtA movements. Give a lot of options for every class but not an overwhelming amount that slows down play or leads to decision paralysis (a commonly cited problem with 4E). Maybe consider rewriting classes as PbtA-style playbooks so (nearly) everything a player needs is already...
    78 replies | 2262 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Saturday, 25th May, 2019, 03:40 PM
    I honestly am having a difficulty of following the obfuscated use of "literary" in this thread. At times it seems equated variously with "text," "anything written" (not to be confused with 'text'), "narrative/story," "oral performance," "anything spoken/conversation," etc. The goal posts keep getting moved and obscured for the sake of claiming that whatever transpires in RPGs is "literature" or...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    4 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 25th May, 2019, 03:54 AM
    ask and ye shall receive. https://youtu.be/IGijGIZrGKc
    23 replies | 443 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 25th May, 2019, 03:52 AM
    I guess, at the end of the day, I'm just not seeing the division. If the DM and players are narrating their hearts out/doing their best to perform their characters, then protagonism is going to happen automatically. You can't perform your character without becoming the protagonist. It's just not possible. Conversely, you can't protagonize (to again, badly abuse the English language) your...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 25th May, 2019, 01:53 AM
    Had to hunt a bit. Found one from Brazil. Interesting. Was that the voice of Michael from Discovery?
    23 replies | 443 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 25th May, 2019, 01:51 AM
    MarkB hits it on the head. SF is not fantasy. Creating worlds is not generally speaking, the goal of SF. It's part of the process, maybe, of reflecting on the real world, but, it's not a goal in and of itself. SF is inherently political, moreso than fantasy.
    11 replies | 304 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 25th May, 2019, 01:45 AM
    Sigh. Taken down. Or at least blocked in my region.
    23 replies | 443 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 25th May, 2019, 01:43 AM
    Really? So, you think there is a correct answer to what makes a good baseball player? An answer that everyone will agree with? Seriously? You honestly think the answer isn't "all of the above"? Or, better yet, what makes a good movie? or a good book? Or a good pretty much anything. Very, very few things can be reduced down to a single element that you should focus on to the...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 25th May, 2019, 12:58 AM
    And the wonder is, they managed to convince folks that this was true. :D
    78 replies | 2262 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 25th May, 2019, 12:40 AM
    Hussar replied to So...keelboats
    Umm, not even remotely. The Chinese were sailing around the world while the Vikings could barely leave the North Atlantic. Why would elves have better ships than everyone else? It's not like there's anything in Elven lore to suggest they make good sailors and, in fact, given that they don't usually like folks cutting down trees, it's not like they are big on building ships. I could see...
    23 replies | 1026 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 25th May, 2019, 12:34 AM
    I would have thought by now that the answer to that has been made pretty clear. They are BOTH important. Sometimes one might be more important than the other, but, at the end of the day, one without the other leads to crap games. A DM who only presents in simple sentences, never uses a compound sentence, never uses a simile or metaphor, never uses any literary technique whatsoever in his or...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    3 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 25th May, 2019, 12:25 AM
    Ok, pemerton, we're back to literary=high art. So, yup, I agree with you.
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Friday, 24th May, 2019, 04:49 PM
    Okay. This was not a strand of discussion that I was engaging with my post but I will answer your question with earnest. * Here I take "some of these techniques" to refer to some of the things that I had listed: literary storytelling, cinematic storytelling, history, psychological therapy, etc. I'm not sure if using some of these techniques are core to running a game. When I look at early...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Friday, 24th May, 2019, 03:20 PM
    A Half-Elc?
    54 replies | 8593 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Friday, 24th May, 2019, 01:33 PM
    So you want to make the psion a wizard subclass despite more appropriate classes existing because you love the 5e wizard so much? I can't find much sympathy with that position.
    92 replies | 3036 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Friday, 24th May, 2019, 01:15 PM
    The psion probably has more in common with a 5E sorcerer than a 5E wizard. No spellbook. Smaller range of powers known. The main overlap between the psion and wizard has been Intelligence. That said, I know that the psion is most commonly attached to Intelligence as its primary attribute, but I know a number of psionic fans who would wish that the psion was appropriately attached to Wisdom for a...
    92 replies | 3036 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Friday, 24th May, 2019, 01:11 PM
    His question was beside the point that I was making/discussing. Answering either 'yes' or 'no' to that question was irrelevant to that point.
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 24th May, 2019, 11:12 AM
    Just to continue on my last post. An interesting situation delivered poorly will result in a bad game as the session stumbles along at a glacial pace because the GM fails to communicate the situation to the players. OTOH a poorly thought out situation where the players have no stake in the outcome probably wonít be saved by good presentation. So at the end of the day, you are asking...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Friday, 24th May, 2019, 10:35 AM
    Yes, which still put it below casters like clerics and druids. But that was the best that psionics had to offer in 3.X so I would say that it did a better job then of power parity. Regardless of its terminological origins, psionics basically has entered general parlance for a type or flavor of "magic" within both science-fantasy - because the moment you introduce psionics into a world, it...
    92 replies | 3036 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 24th May, 2019, 10:28 AM
    Hussar replied to So...keelboats
    Well, the problem you get into here is anachronism. A schooner is a 19th century ship. A Galleon is late 16th Century and later. A carrack is essentially the Santa Maria and you wouldn't really see anything more advanced than that, certainly not a schooner. It really depends on how far down the rabbit hole you want to dive with this. There's so much there. But, an open water ship...
    23 replies | 1026 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 24th May, 2019, 10:02 AM
    pemerton. Nice tautological definitions there. Until such time as youíd care to plant the goal posts, this discussion regardless of how much blather you want to add, is pointless. óóó hawkeyefan - I would tell such a new DM that there is no single most important thing but rather dming, like any creative exercise is a combination of multiple factors that need to be addressed.
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Friday, 24th May, 2019, 09:29 AM
    Yes, because the question was beside the point.
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 24th May, 2019, 05:13 AM
    ROTFLMAO. Oh, goodie, we're right back to swirling around the rabbit hole of what does "literary" mean. Yay. See, folks, this is why this thread is 50 pages long, and you can talk about pemerton being clear with what he meant all you like, but, this is about as clear as mud. REH is "literary"? Seriously? A minor genre author who wasn't good enough to actually publish a novel and is...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 24th May, 2019, 03:21 AM
    Nope. Still agreeing pemerton. You made your point. RPGing isnít high art. Well done you.
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 11:46 PM
    Considering we're 50ish pages down this rabbit hole and you have multiple posters obviously not understanding the point, including myself, I'd argue that it wasn't quite as clear as maybe you think. As I said, if the OP had simply stated, "Is RPGing high art", then this thread would be 2 posts long. As it is, it was a total waste of time and energy because everyone kept flailing around...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 09:35 PM
    Ah. My post is a lot less funny now that they deleted the spam account.
    80 replies | 8396 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 09:31 PM
    Nope pemerton. I 100% agree with you. Any earlier disagreement was because of the misleading and vagueness of the OP. If you had simply said, Is RPGing high art?Ē This thread would be three posts long. Instead you used a bunch of word salad verbiage that obfuscated your point and then couldnít be bothered to clarify your point when it was obvious that most here didnít get what you were...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 09:20 PM
    Watch out, you might get what you're after Cool, babies! Strange but not a stranger I'm an ordinary guy Burning down the house
    47 replies | 1811 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 08:32 PM
    Holy Thread Necromancy, Batman!!
    80 replies | 8396 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 06:15 PM
    The question seems beside the point of whether we should equate these things.
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 05:25 PM
    I think that a GM should probably be aware of storytelling techniques to inform and improve their games, but not necessarily literary ones. Literature is one form of storytelling. But GMing could also take cues from cinematic techniques. (Which doesn't make RPGs "film".) Plus, one could be aware of historiography and "Gesichte" to inform your stories, but that does not make RPGs history....
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 01:56 PM
    A lot of the pieces are there in 5e. It would probably be easier to use 4E Essentials as the basis since there is more overlap there.
    78 replies | 2262 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 01:55 PM
    Ahh, ok, so, we're at the "literary=Shakespeare" end of the spectrum. Ok, fair enoguh. As I said, I agree with you, if that's the definition of literary you want to work with.
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 01:52 PM
    A druid that taps into the world spirit/mind or psychic energies that connects every living creature. A ranger who adapts psionic attacks and defenses so they can better stalk the abberations that threaten the natural order of the world.
    92 replies | 3036 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 12:10 PM
    Henry - Savage Tide. :D But, yeah, the print magazines were brutal, apparently. The US Postal service and the distribution channels were insane. Something like a 6 month lead in time - a magazine is published in January and you don't get paid until June sort of thing. Meaning you have massive amounts of capital wrapped up that you can't actually use. Constant issues with delivery and...
    13 replies | 587 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 12:03 PM
    A cogent and interesting point. :D I am convinced.
    80 replies | 8396 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 12:00 PM
    Huh. How, exactly, do you inhabit the fiction in a conversation? Look, if you're simply asking if RPGing is about creating the next great novel, then, sure, no, it's not. No one is going to mistake an RPG session for high art. If that's the bar you're setting, then, fair enough, this conversation should have ended long ago, because, well, frankly, no one would argue that the goal of play...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 11:49 AM
    OTOH, it is not sophistry or equivocation to point out that in role play we distinguish between in character and out of character speech. Something you would never do in a conversation. You would, however, make that distinction in a literary sense - narrator and narrative. The constant switching between first and third person is also something you typically don't do in a conversation about...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 11:22 AM
    His intent was clear. 4e has a more restricted license for developing potential content whereas 5e does not. So if one wants to expand content for something more 4e like (or an evolution thereof), then 5e would potentially serve as a better chassis due to its less restricted license. So how would one do that. If you wouldn't, then that's fine. Zardnaar, I would also look at the d20 3.X...
    78 replies | 2262 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 11:14 AM
    I did a Fate one-shot set in a fantastical version of Renaissance Venice. The one shot adventure though was actually based on a Savage Worlds one-shot set on a college campus. The premise was that a merchant family had acquired a small island on the outskirts of the city which they planned to use as a storehouse for their shipping business (and contraband). The island belonged to a group of...
    23 replies | 911 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 08:40 AM
    Wow. That's what you got from what I wrote? Where did I even remotely suggest that 1st person or 3rd person is preferable? Heck, I mostly play in 3rd person personally, so, I really have no idea where you are getting this. Are you seriously saying that "Hey that looks like the critter from Men in Black" is an in character speech? That your NPC's would "get" the joke and react to it as...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 08:36 AM
    No one is disagreeing with this. Not a single person. What's being disagreed with is the notion that content is all that matters. That regardless of the language used to present that situation or content, it will be interesting to the players solely on its own merits as content. To me, this is flatly false. You can have the most fascinating situation ever written, but, if it's presented...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 12:39 AM
    Now, think about this 1st person argument for a second. You will, presumably, choose to speak in a certain way and use certain words in an attempt to "portray a character", right? You wouldn't proclaim, in character, in a fantasy game, "Hey, that looks like the critter at the end of Men in Black!" That would be considered out of character, no? So, as soon as you add in that criteria - what...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019, 09:05 PM
    Computer/Console: Final Fantasy series (6 being my favorite) Ultima series (7 and 7.5 being my personal favorites) Planescape: Torment Vampire the Masquerade: Bloodlines Tabletop: D&D 5e Vampire the Masquerade Mage the Ascension (I have a tendency to mix in the Cthulhlu Mythos in my games...so fun) Shadowrun
    51 replies | 4774 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019, 03:31 PM
    I can say that my group went through Sunless Citadel and Forge of Fury as the first part of Storm King's Thunder (I was underwhelmed at the opening chapter in the book) and had a fantastic time. Got them up to 5th level quite nicely.
    22 replies | 851 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019, 12:25 PM
    True, but, that is generally how ratings are done. That's why most reviews skew so high. Really, a 7/10 should be a pretty high rating, it's higher than the majority of other similar stuff out there. But, unfortunately, what it really means is that it's a barely adequate product because the baseline is 9 or 10 out of 10. Same goes for 5/5. It makes reviews pretty much pointless in most...
    41 replies | 1940 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019, 12:20 PM
    How so? You've been pretty clear here. A more "literary" approach is not something you enjoy. And that's groovy. I'm not saying you should. But, you've repeatedly stated that you don't want certain kinds of description and that you would not enjoy a game that employed certain types of description, specifically a more literary style rather than a less formal, more conversational style. ...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019, 12:11 PM
    This is probably my favorite thing about 4e as well. The mechanics, the races, the classes, the characters, the monsters, and the cosmology are integrated into a cohsesive thematic whole by the its mythic lore. It still influences a lot about a number of my game worlds. And you can also tell that it influenced the world of Critical Role too.
    78 replies | 4981 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019, 11:23 AM
    perhaps a better question might be, "Should an RPG attempt to being a literary endevour". To which, I would answer a resounding yes. That I will try and fail doesn't bother me too much. But that we shouldn't try at all? That's just sad. And, since we're not limited to D&D here, what about games like The Dying Earth where being "literary" is part and parcel to play. Not only is it...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019, 10:19 AM
    So which class chassis did you use for the soulknife and wilder? I assume you used a fighter for the psychic warrior.
    92 replies | 3036 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019, 10:18 AM
    13th Age is probably one of the closest "kin systems" of 4E, being developed by the lead developers for both 3E and 4E. For Everyone: I also found a great Angry GM article where he reflects on 4E. He is critical in many places, but he is also incredibly open about the aspects he loved. Here is one part where he talks about the lore cohesion of 4E, which is something that I mentioned...
    205 replies | 6621 view(s)
    7 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 11:10 PM
    But, apparently it does because at least Bedrockgames insists that the words that are added matter a LOT. To the point of not liking a game that adds the wrong words - as the Vengaurak example shows. So obviously word choice is extremely important.
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 11:07 PM
    Hang on. I got taken to task by pemerton not too long ago for including all these things on conveying dwarfiness at the table and got told it wasnít content. It was in fact pointless color that adds nothing to the game. So which is it?
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 11:02 PM
    So what? Youíre telling me that both answers would equally evoke a response? That neither one would make the slightest difference in tone or anything at the table? You must have the most time deaf players in the world.
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 04:32 PM
    I agree that the psion should be different from the wizard, but the argument becomes more challenging with other cases, especially with the idea of cramming all psionic archetypes into a singular mystic class. The psychic warrior, for example, fills an incredibly similar niche as the eldritch warrior. So it would be possible to put a psionic twist onto the fighter chassis to create the psychic...
    92 replies | 3036 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 04:29 PM
    Please don't equate my "won't" (for the sake of the thread) for "can't". Okay. I apologize that I misread your tone. Yes, Sacrosanct, statements like this are an assumption about what I was meaning: Or this: Or rude dismissive comments like this: But nowhere here did you ask for me to support my claim when you initially responded. You launched into a rant assuming what I wrote while...
    205 replies | 6621 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 04:07 PM
    You also assumed a lot about what I meant by my statement. Furthermore, you did not initially ask me anything when you launched into your assumptions. Being pulled into your game of "proving it" does not seem prudent for discourse in this thread especially not when you are being needlessly hostile.
    205 replies | 6621 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 03:50 PM
    I lobbed bombs at no one. It was not directed at anyone in particular. I only noted that the traces of the Edition War have taken on new forms in a lot of Warlord in 5E threads. I have not accused you of being one. I did not even name names. I don't even think that most of the debate, vitriol, or criticisms in the Warlord thread are from "4aters." I do think though that your response has been...
    205 replies | 6621 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 03:34 PM
    You are assuming a lot here about the very little that I said. I would recommend not incensing yourself into a rage about your assumptions. My comment was not directed at you. If you are not a 4ater, then my comment would obviously not apply.
    205 replies | 6621 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 10:09 AM
    This. But not so coincidentally, 5e Warlord threads are also what attract a lot of 4aters. Again pointing out how the Edition Wars have transitioned into the 5e era and the contrast between 4e fans and 4aters with 5e. I would not mind if WotC polished and more cohesively integrated what they have in 5e first: class, subclass and feat balance, ability checks (and skills), inspiration/bonds, and...
    205 replies | 6621 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 09:56 AM
    I would not prefer using the spellbook wizard for the 3e Psion. It seems like the Sorcerer would be a more appropriate fit. :erm:
    92 replies | 3036 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 09:05 AM
    But, that's entirely the point. We talk about the kobolds on the hill and we don't need a whole lot more than that, because, well, frankly, we're all experienced gamers and we know what a kobold is. At some point in our gaming history, someone has described a kobold to us. Probably several someones over the years. So, now, we can basically take it as read that we know what a kobold is and...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 04:56 AM
    Interesting that no one talked about the Vengaurak on the hill. After all, itís a situation and itís just as clear as 14 kobolds. So. There is a Vengaurak on that hill. What do you do?
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 12:54 AM
    Curiosity peaked. Which three?
    92 replies | 3036 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 20th May, 2019, 10:48 PM
    On the 13 kobolds on a hill. Ok. Itís conversation. Player asks, ďWhat do they look like?Ē Fairly reasonable question. Particularly if you trade kobolds for something new that the player has never seen before. Now describe your 13 kobolds without being literary. Do you really just say three foot tall dog men? Oh wait, wrong edition. Three foot tall lizard dudes armed with spears? ...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Monday, 20th May, 2019, 03:35 PM
    Ledger was incredible...surprisingly so. He went to a dark place playing that character, and I honestly think it contributed to his death. Not so much with the DC failure on its last few movies. Wonder Woman and Aquaman were both surprisingly good. And while I haven't seen Shazam! I do hear that it is a fun and entertaining movie. Maybe RP will get it right...if they don't make him sparkle...
    25 replies | 589 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Monday, 20th May, 2019, 02:24 PM
    The show ended pretty much how I expected it to (I called Bran winning the throne 2 seasons ago). I do have some complaints about the continuity. Last episode, especially...what was the point of Arya finding the white horse? Did she become death? Was she dead and the horse was taking her home? D&D: "Nah, my bad...forget that scene! Red herring and all. Oooo, look!! Shiney Dragon...
    110 replies | 2980 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Monday, 20th May, 2019, 12:00 PM
    Having a Psion class is a good call. I agree with CapnZapp that a lot of past psionic archetypes could easily be ported to subclasses of preexisting classes: * Psychic Warrior: Fighter Subclass * Soul Knife: Monk or Rogue Subclass * Wilder: Sorcerer Subclass * Ardent: Bard or Cleric Subclass
    92 replies | 3036 view(s)
    3 XP
  • Aldarc's Avatar
    Monday, 20th May, 2019, 11:53 AM
    I voted for 4E. My foray into D&D technically began with me trying to figure out "whiskey tango foxtot is going on?" during two final sessions of 2E before the group planned on switching to 3E which would soon release. So 3E was really my actual first D&D system. It was new and fun, and I have probably played more games using 3E's d20 skeleton than any other system. So I have a lot of...
    205 replies | 6621 view(s)
    4 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 20th May, 2019, 07:15 AM
    I just realized that there is a very simple test we can perform to prove my point. Can I play a character in your game that is 100% outside of genre? So, an elven wizard in a Call of Cthulu game or a Battlemech Pilot in your D&D game, or whatever. Can I sit down at your table with a character that is completely wrong for the genre of your game and play that character? If you just said no,...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 20th May, 2019, 07:02 AM
    pemerton - perhaps I missed it, but, the point I brought up about using literary techniques, IMO, does speak strongly to the notion that we do need "literary qualities" in an RPG. Without trope, theme, character, and the like, an RPG is simply a really complex board game. All of these aspects, all of these literary techniques, be it clarity of explanation, foreshadowing (which, Bedrockgames, I...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 19th May, 2019, 05:45 AM
    Honestly, I think two things are very true in this thread. 1. People have equated literary and performance with "flowery language". That is not what's meant and has never been meant. Literary or performance simply means HOW the material is presented in the game, either in written form or in oral during a session. Literary carries additional connotations of utilizing various literary...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 19th May, 2019, 01:06 AM
    Sorry. I didnít realize I had to give more evidence. 1e modules almost all had boxed text. Tomb of Horrors, one of the earliest modules has a picture gallery to show players. Until recently, setting guides were very, very popular books with hardcore fans who are dedicated to the canon of the setting. On and on. Hundreds of pages in Dragon dedicated to the performance end of running a game....
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 18th May, 2019, 10:39 PM
    Considering that 5e now dominates the market, online play at least shows almost 70% of all RPG sessions are 5e, and 5e is selling in droves, would you care to restate your point that "lots of people" think like me that you've made a few times in the last few pages? Brushing it off as "marketing" seems a bit self serving no? You don't care for it, so, it's just marketing, and not core to an...
    734 replies | 13973 view(s)
    0 XP
More Activity
About Hussar

Basic Information

About Hussar
Location:
Fukuoka, Japan
Sex:
Male
Age Group:
Over 40

Statistics


Total Posts
Total Posts
22,707
Posts Per Day
4.20
Last Post
What proportion of the population are adventurers? Today 05:09 AM

Currency

Gold Pieces
31
General Information
Last Activity
Today 05:09 AM
Join Date
Monday, 9th August, 2004
Product Reviews & Ratings
Reviews Written
1

10 Friends

  1. Aldarc Aldarc is offline

    Member

    Aldarc
  2. God Returns God Returns is offline

    Member

    God Returns
  3. Manbearcat Manbearcat is offline

    Member

    Manbearcat
  4. Merkuri Merkuri is offline

    Member

    Merkuri
  5. MurderHobo1 MurderHobo1 is offline

    Member

    MurderHobo1
  6. Raunalyn Raunalyn is offline

    Member

    Raunalyn
  7. Rechan Rechan is offline

    Member

    Rechan
  8. sev sev is offline

    Member

    sev
  9. Southern Oracle Southern Oracle is offline

    Member

    Southern Oracle
  10. steenan steenan is offline

    Member

    steenan
Showing Friends 1 to 10 of 10
Page 1 of 15 1234567891011 ... LastLast

Monday, 27th May, 2019


Sunday, 26th May, 2019


Saturday, 25th May, 2019


Friday, 24th May, 2019



Page 1 of 15 1234567891011 ... LastLast
Page 1 of 54 123456789101151 ... LastLast

Sunday, 26th May, 2019

  • 04:02 PM - Maxperson mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    Description one is excessive and, I think, not what Hussar or Maxperson are pushing for (it is way too long). I can't speak for Hussar, but it's certainly not what I'm pushing for. But it is an example of the downside of a literary focus because I have had GMs attempt this kind of narration and I view it as a product of thinking in terms of boxed text or novel prose. I don't accept this "downside" argument as a reason not to do or like something. I mean, cheating is a downside of playing a game. Just because there are some DMs out there who will write excessive descriptions does not make literary descriptions bad, just like there being some players out there who cheat does not make playing games bad. These are examples of bad DMs and bad players, not bad writing styles or bad games. I wouldn't object to a bit of this. A bit is all that's really needed. Where it goes off the rails for me is giving me every single detail. But the worst part is it assumes PC actions in the inn. It just glosses over so many places where a p...

Friday, 24th May, 2019

  • 05:02 PM - hawkeyefan mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    so where is the line? At what point do you cross from regular description/presentation/performance into whatever it is pemerton is talking about? Well it's different for everyone, I would think. Would you agree that it's a scale? Personally, I like to use evocative description when it's called for. Usually at the start of a new scene....I'll deliver a few lines to try and set the scene. If there's a particular mood I'm going for, I'll try and tailor what I'm saying to reinforce that mood. But this isn't something I always do. Sometimes, I'll just go with basic description in order to make sure things are clear. Sometimes, I don't want to convey a specific mood right away. It really varies a lot for me. I'm also in no way against leaning on visual media when it helps. Describing whatever creature Hussar mentioned a few pages ago as the bug at the end of Men in Black works for me. I usually provide an actor in association with my important NPCs to help my players picture what I'm going for. To my mind, that's not a literary technique by any reasonable stretch....it facilitates understanding at the table to say "the captain of the guard is a bit of a brutish man, like Herc from the Wire". But if I was writing fiction, I'd never do that. So for me, sure, sometimes my word choice is meant to be evocative in the same way an author of literature woudl attempt to be evocative. But other times, I just want to facilitate play by making sure my players understand the situation and the scene. So in that sense, the importance of using evocative language is simply not as important to me as the situation itself. Then he really shouldn't have proclaimed it as not core... I think that ill choice of wording is to blame for alot of the back and forth. You make a statement like that and y...
  • 08:47 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    A literary endeavour is one which aims at having the virtues of literature. An artistic endeavour is one which aims at having the virtues of art. An intellectual endeavour is one which aims to contribute to knowledge. Etc. One can interrogate each of these in more detail, obviously, but the basic notion is pretty clear. REH in writing the Conan stories is engaged in a literary endeavour. He's trying to produce good writing. Is that what RPGing is concerned with? My claim is no. Hussar's is - as best I can tell - yes, that part of what makes for success in RPGing is good wordcraft and deft performance. That's what we're disagreeing about. Not about whether REH succeeded in creating literature by some standard whereby Shakespeare is clearly in and (say) The Hardy Boys are clearly out. Some posters point to desiderata like the GM has to be clear. Sure - so do instruction manuals. But clearly those are not literary endeavours - they don't aspire to have the qualities of literature, that's not the aspect of human creative affairs that they belong to. Some point to desiderata like the GM has to evoke emotion. Sure - but so does conversation. And conversation doesn't aim at creating literary works. Or in other words, there are other pathways from communication to emotion than literary skill. Some point to inherent features like it involves authorship of a shared fiction. Sure - but so do children's playground games. And those clearly aren't literary endeavours. ...
  • 05:34 AM - hawkeyefan mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    Hussar I donít necessarily agree with pemerton. I simply understand what he is saying. I think RPGs can contain literary quality. They can important and meaningful...although itís usually only so for a handful of people. But thatís not really the point. Letís say a new GM came to you for advice, and said ďgimme the ONE THING that I need to know about GMing a gameĒ what would you offer? Always narrate with a mind toward evocative language? Always try to put the playersí characters into interesting situations where meaningful decisions are needed? Always have pizza? What would you tell this new GM?

Thursday, 23rd May, 2019

  • 11:48 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    ...se. since we're not limited to D&D here, what about games like The Dying Earth where being "literary" is part and parcel to play. Not only is it expected, it's rewarded by the mechanics. Or LARPing, unless we're insisting that LARP'er's aren't "true" gamers.Well as it happens we played a session of The Dying Earth a couple of months ago. Emulating Vance's dialogue, including in such a way as to make the other participants burst into laughter, isn't what I was thinking of when I posted the OP. I'll come back to this below, but at this point will report that we had some funny dialogue and some laughter-inducing taglines, but I don't think what we produced would count as quality literature, and nor were we aiming for that. Thatís because imagining, exploring, and engaging with good content is whatís at the heart of RPGing. The literary quality with which that content is described runs orthogonally to that.To me this is at the heart of the discussion in this thread. Contra Hussar's claim upthread, it's nothing about "fluff" vs "crunch". Rather, its RPGing as performance/entertainment as opposed to RPGing as shared inhabitation of the imagined world. Hussar is right, I think, to point to The Dying Earth RPG as a game which plays with this contrast, but from my own play experience I am still comfortable in saying that, for us, it was inhabitation of the Vancian world which drove our play - and the taglines and dialogue were part of that. Part of what I have in mind in saying this is that what made the taglines funny (when they were) wasn't the deftness of delivery or timing in the theatrical sense, but the way it reinforced the contrivance and absurdity that is at the heart of the in-fiction situation. perhaps a better question might be, "Should an RPG attempt to being a literary endevour". To which, I would answer a resounding yes. That I will try and fail doesn't bother me too much. But that we shouldn't try at all? That's just sad.To me this seems to b...

Tuesday, 21st May, 2019

  • 04:02 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    tell us about how you see RPGs working. For instance, what do you see as the role of situation in RPGing. Why do you think the narratie crat with which a situation is presented is so important?What is it that you think we've been doing this whole time? It's not engaging in playstyle wars or pushing a playstyle agenda.To elaborate on my question, then: upthread Imaro seemed to assert, or at least very strongly imply, that whether or not a situation is interesting is a player-independent state of affairs. Do you agree? What do you think the GM should have regard to in coming up with situations? Lanefan, in other threads over many years, has posted that the GM should always author scenarios without regard to which players and/or PCs will engage with them. Do you agree? Upthread Hussar has complained about players who just want the GM to "roll up the plot wagon". What do you think the players have a duty to bring to the table? For instance, do you think the players have a duty to be enthusiastic about the situation the GM presents? Not at all far upthread Bedrockgame posited a contrast between GM as storyteller/entertainer and GM as facilitator/adjudicator. Do you think this is a useful contrast? If so, which side of it do you favour? If not, why not? Upthread - both a long way upthread, and in my past few posts - I've made some comments about what I see as possible tensions between a GM issuing an invitation to respond via narration and a GM aiming at literary quality in his/her narration. Do you agree that those tensions obtain? If so, what do you do about it? If no, why not? These are some of the matters, most of them raised in this thread, that I think might be more interesting to discuss than the meaning of the word "literary".
  • 03:54 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    ...ever, fantastic descriptions and unique details are often the things that I, as a player, latch onto and remember. Somewhere upthread people were talking about kobolds on a hill. For me, it would be helpful to hear about their drool or bloodshot eyes. Such descriptions would seed my imagination, immersing me more deeply in the fiction. To the extent that it requires preparation to have such details at hand, then I would think some such prep work is worthwhile and beneficial (whether it is "literary" or not).Can I pick up on your example (bolded by me to call it out) and a possible risk in play? Not to denigrate the example, but to try to connect it into how I'm thinking about things. It seems to me that it is possible that the GM might narrate the koblds' drool and bloodshot eyes, hoping and intending to evoke a particular response and engagement from the players, only instead to trigger responses about the kobolds having had a hard night out, being stone/hungover, etc. (Similar to Hussar's reference, I think upthread, to players making d*ck jokes.) This is a risk that arises in the spontaneous back-and-forth of RPGing that doesn't come up the same way in a book. A reader might snigger at some line or phrase in a work, but there's at least a tenable sense of "work" in which that response leaves the work itself unchanged. Whereas when we think of the RPG experience as yielding a "work", the player response can't be excluded in the same way. So to begin an answer to your question - and it's not more than a beginning - while prep can of course be helpful (for everything from thinking up situations, to thinking up choice phrases, to drawing some maps or pictures that might be useful for communicative or - in some RPGs - resolution purposes), I think the nature of RPGing will always tend to bring the dynamics of the here-and-now to the fore.

Monday, 20th May, 2019

  • 02:15 PM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    Another thread that has fallen victim to the PRP(Pemerton Redefinition Program). I started the thread. Hussar is free to say what he likes about the dependence of much RPGing on the logic of genres (it's something I myself have been posting about for maybe 10+ years on these boards). But those things don't rebut the claim in the OP, which is pretty clear: RPGing requires narration: GMs describe situations, and players declare actions for their PCs that respond to those situations. But I don't think the literary quality of that narration is important. What matters to me is that the players feel the significance of the situations the GM describes I don't think Hussar has inadvertantely taken that for a claim that genre plays no role in RPGing. And your claim that I'm derailing is itself derailing. Asking whether activity A answers to aesthetic criteria X of activity B is standard stuff. Eg is movie-making a theatric endeavour? or is house-painting an artistic endeavour? The only people I know who regularly turn this sort of question into debates about the meaning of words - as oppo...

Saturday, 18th May, 2019

  • 05:05 PM - Imaro mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    I think we are confusing things because we are talking about abstract general concepts and using them as proxies to fight over specifics. What I am pushing back against is the idea put out there that GMs should engage in a style of narration that is flavorful and literary in nature. I much prefer a more conversational style that isn't consciously performative. That doesn't mean I list off bullet points. It means I am fairly concise, not particularly emotive like an actor would be, and that I am talking to my players like I talk to my friends. I see it much more as a conversation like Permerton does. The impression I am getting from posters like Hussar is they value things like the GM speaking in voices, using evocative words to paint a picture and atmosphere, etc. I am not into that as a player or as a GM. I will give a brief description of what is there, then say "What do you want to do". If an NPC is talking, I speak as the character. But I am not shifting voices or performing. But this is arguing over degrees... the point is it's still there even in your gameplay example above when you speak as the NPC... you're literally just saying you only want X amount while Hussar wants Y amount which is fine, but it's still there in both games which is why I feel it is core. Unless you can totally excise something out without loosing quality in your gameplay... I feel it is core. I would say my style is laid back and it isn't too concerned about peoples' performances. My main interest is whether I am having fun and people are engaged with what is going on in the game. I am what I call a 'roll off the couch and play GM'. I don't look...
  • 03:10 PM - hawkeyefan mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    I think ďgood writingĒ and ďpresentationĒ are getting mixed up here. For something like a pre-written game module, the quality of the writing may or may not be relevant to the game. For some GMs, that may be the selling point that inspires them to use the material. Certainly, in such a case, the quality of the writing matters. However, for other GMs, itís more a matter of the content within the module. It can be minimalist in how the information is presented....maybe simply a list of bullet points. In many cases, this might be all thatís needed, and the GM in turn can make this information compelling to his or her players. Take the dungeon shared by @Hussar a few pages ago. On its own, itís a bare bones approach to an adventure. But Iím sure I could take that map and key and tuen it into something fun at the table. Sure, Iíd embellish and add to it during play....mostly based on what my players seem to find interesting. Ultimately, the quality of the content in a published adventure may or may not matter. It may be the thing that inspires the GM or it may be an obstacle to actually running the game. How that information is then presented to the table is another matter entirely. A GM can take an incredibly well written and evocative bit of writing and pare it down to its basic components and share that with his players. Likewise, a GM can take a list of bullet points and can breathe life into then in how he chooses to share them with the table. I think these are two separate things, and while both are fundamentally necessary, the importance of each will vary from table to table.

Thursday, 16th May, 2019

  • 02:30 PM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    You realize this is the OP's original distinction... right? The OP who you have continually agreed with...right?It's not my distinction, actually. I never used the word content. That's Hussar's word. Hussar has suggested that I am eschewing description, but here's the OP: RPGing requires narration: GMs describe situations, and players declare actions for their PCs that respond to those situations. But I don't think the literary quality of that narration is important. What matters to me is that the players feel the significance of the situations the GM describes - that they feel the pull to action, and the threats of inaction. That is, that the situation engage and motivate the players as players, not as an audience to a performance. My point in this thread has been consistent: that what is distinctive about RPGing is that it engages by way of participation in situation, not performance to an audience. I don't think it's that hard to understand, whether or not you agree with it.
  • 02:15 PM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    ...tart thinking more about the cultural significance of my beard, describing the intricate braids and beads that represent various elements of my character's background. Eventually, a good GM picks up on this and may develop hooks and connections. Maybe we meet another dwarf whose "beard writing" reveals something about them. Or we end up in a scenario where my beard is threatened (or I need to be in a clean-shaven disguise). I never consciously declared to the GM that these things are central features of my character, but over time these story elements can grow and become more significant. This sort of promotion and demotion of roleplaying elements seems to be a significant component of most games that I've played, regardless of the system.This is important. You are right about fluidity: actual play doesn't manifest discrete types or moments of the neat types we use in analysis and criticism. Some of what I had in mind in my post that you responded to is elaborated in my posts to Hussar just upthread. Here's a passage from Christopher Kubasik that also captures what I had in mind: The tales of a story entertainment are based not on the success of actions, but on the choice of actions; not the manipulation of rules, but the manipulation of narrative tools. The primary tool is Character. Characters drive the narrative of all stories. However, many people mistake character for characterization. Characterization is the look of a character, the description of his voice, the quirks of habit. Characterization creates the concrete detail of a character through the use of sensory detail and exposition. By ďseeingĒ how a character looks, how he picks up his wine glass, by knowing he has a love of fine tobacco, the character becomes concrete to our imagination, even while remaining nothing more than black ink upon a white page. But a person thus described is not a character. A character must do. Character is action. Thatís a rule of thumb for plays and movies,...
  • 02:00 PM - Bedrockgames mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    I responded pretty directly to the individual points you were making Hussar. Not sure how else you want me to engage the discussion.

Tuesday, 7th May, 2019


Thursday, 2nd May, 2019

  • 05:23 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post What does it mean to "Challenge the Character"?
    ...old friend Frances - I ask her to let us through the gate! is an example of the player deciding what his/her PC does, thinks and feels. Nor do I think it's enough of an answer to say that players have no authority over any aspect of the fiction except action declaration and associated bodily movements by their PCs. Page 33 of the Basic PDF says that "Characters are defined by much more than their race and class. Theyíre individuals with their own stories, interests, connections, and capabilities beyond those that class and race define." There are sidebar examples throughout the PDF of two characters (Tika and Artemis) who are distinguiished - as those sidebars emphasise - on the basis of non-mechanical details of the fiction. That seems an invitation to players to make up similar stuff for their PCs. Deciding on Ideals and Bonds seems also to invite the player to make up people and places that their PCs care about and are connected to. In the context of this thread, I think that Hussar has made it fairly clear that one reason he doesn't like the "goal and approach" method of action resolution is that it privileges the GM's conception of key aspects of the ficiton over possibly differing conceptions held by the players. Others obviously disagree, taking the view that exercising such authority is the prerogative of the GM. But upthread, Elfcrusher gave an example of a player authoring shared fiction invovling the stories told to a young PC by trial elders. I don't think many posters regarded this as a usurpation of the GM's authority. The general response to my post seems to be that the player deciding that the gate guard is her/his PC's childhood friend Frances is a usurpation of the GM's authority. But in some other recent threads I've seen criticisms of a GM narrating failure as some sort of oversight or carelessness on the part of the PC as a usurpation by the GM of the player's authority over deciding what his/her PC does, thinks and feels. Likewise there's a wide...

Wednesday, 1st May, 2019

  • 11:22 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post What does it mean to "Challenge the Character"?
    ...official" 5e answer is. It's something where I would expect very significant table variation. My own approach would be either (3) or (4) - which one would depend on further issues of how the game is being played, what the role of pre-authored GM notes are, etc. If adjudicating via (4), then a failure would impose a penalty/disadvantage on the subsequent check. If adjudicating via (3) then a failure also needs to give a penalty, but that might have to be more concrete than an abstract mechanical thing and what that might be would depend very much on context. And to finish with a slightly different matter . . . What I've been trying to accomplish (and, yes, your caustic dismissiveness has at times led to me reciprocating with the same) is to see if you acknowledge any middle ground between the player using personal persuasiveness to manipulate the DM and purely mechanical rolling of dice with zero creative problem solving on the part of the player.I could be misunderstanding Hussar, but I don't see that the concern is with "personal persuasiveness" in the used car salesman sense, but rather with being able to cleverly pitch solutions which will impress the GM. Example roll-circumventing action declaration which are rather obvious, like using ladders to climb walls or using keys to open locks, clearly don't fall within the scope of Hussar's concern. But I can't imagine those are the examples that "goal and approach" advocates have in mind when they advocate their position, either, as those would be very banal examples of a clever approach obviating the need for a check.

Tuesday, 30th April, 2019

  • 05:31 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post What does it mean to "Challenge the Character"?
    ...g the DM should be judging the efficacy of a player's stated approach to the goal is telling the person choosing to be DM about his or her role in the game.I follow, but actually am now a bit more puzzled (not by you - by the overall logic of the situation) because of the post of Elfcrusher's that I've posted. (The emphasis is original, though I've changed it from italics to underlining so as to maintain it in the quote format.) And maybe "intrigued" would be a better word than "puzzled" - I'm not sure, but will post on. Judging that an approach would work very clearly requires a robust sense of a not-too-mutable fiction. But (as you say) the player is permitted to exploit the mutability of fiction to make sense of his/her play of the character. For this to work requires - I think - very clear boundaries around what is mutable in the hands of the player, and what the GM is permitted to rigdily establish in advance of adjudicating the "woulds" and "coulds". I think that (eg) Hussar's use of fortune very close to the framing, and postponing nearly all of the narration to afterwards, might be one way of trying to manage (by trying to avoid) this need for boundaries. EDIT: I saw this just after posting: Who's to say the character can't know these things? You, as the DM? Sure. But maybe your player disagrees. Maybe he/she says, "There was a village elder who was a great adventurer in his youth, and as a child Gord the Barbarian sat at his feet and listened to all his stories." Now, you, as DM, may want to overrule that and say, "No, it's my game world and that didn't happen." But in that case the problem isn't metagaming (as AngryDM has done a great job of explaining) it's a problem between you and your players.Presumably if the player disagrees, in the context of disarming a trap, about what would work because even one's grandmother could do it without trouble, the GM is expected to have the last word. But in the PC backstory case, and the action de...

Sunday, 28th April, 2019

  • 05:56 AM - Elfcrusher mentioned Hussar in post If an NPC is telling the truth, what's the Insight DC to know they're telling the truth?
    And let's talk about traps that aren't telegraphed for moment, and see if we can figure out what exactly the gameplay for this is supposed to look like. Option 1: Every 5' Square The players are just supposed to all make Investigation and Perception checks every 5', and hope that somebody in the party rolls high enough. I'm not saying this is how it must be played; just trying to cover all bases here. Can we all agree this one is not a desirable outcome? Analysis: didn't we stop playing this way in about 1980? Option 2: Passive Perception If anybody's passive score is high enough, the trap is discovered, otherwise it's not, with no decision-making by the player. This might be what some refer to as "challenging the character" (or "challenging the build", as it were.) Analysis: In addressing @iserith's trapped hallway, @Hussar claims that once the Perception check succeeds no further explanation/input by the player is required; the DM can infer that a trap of which the party is aware is also successfully avoided. So it would seem that the players don't actually need to do anything here: if their passive Perception is high enough, nothing else happens. Otherwise the trap is triggered (presumably with some narration by the DM: "It's a poison arrow trap, you take X piercing and Y poison damage.") Instead of actually doing all this work behind the DM screen during play, it might be more expedient to add up the average damage of all the traps, multiply by the odds of the trap being triggered, divide by the number of people in the party, and just have everybody reduce their hp by that number. You could speed things up even more by not reducing damage and instead having everybody check off the spell slots and HD necessary to negate all that damage. Option 3: Clues There's some clue that challenges players...oo...
  • 01:50 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post What does it mean to "Challenge the Character"?
    ...** knowing the Raven Queen story - their character does. The second is it seems an example of my #4 - both are required (if I read it tight) because specific language skills in character *and* a riddle answered in player are required. Riddles do not have to be player only, no argument there. They just fo seem to be that way quite often.I think at my table they're probably closer to your 1 (? I'm not sure I'm remembering your categories correctly), in the sense that there is not going to be any check made. At the table, the discussion is all between the players, playing their characters - so eg in the second you see the player of the paladin declining to take part because he's not interested in debating "good" ideals; and in the first, he is the one who is most excited about being in the Mausoleum of the Raven Queen, and so it's not a coincidence (although also not guaranteed) that he is the one who works it out first. I don't know 100% how this fits into your conception, or Hussar's, or Elfcrusher's - I would say it is challenging the player's ability to inhabit and play as his/her character. And of course it takes for granted that the player is immersed in the fiction of the campaign (riddle 3) or its moral logic (riddle 2). I think the first riddle - the one I can't remember - was probably weakest in this repsect because it didn't draw enough on that immersion.

Friday, 26th April, 2019

  • 01:42 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post If an NPC is telling the truth, what's the Insight DC to know they're telling the truth?
    I don't know what to tell you, man. The D&D 4e Rules Compendium is the most up-to-date version of the rules, whether you choose to adopt them or not. They tell us how to play the game and that includes players asking to make skill checks and the DM almost always saying yes.This is where I start to have a bit of sympathy for Hussar's view about the significance of "how to play rules" vs the actual play of the mechanics at the table. I mean, you seem to be telling me that I played 4e wrong because I played in accordance with the published "how to play" advice which was, in a late release, modified/watered down for no very clear reason. Suppose that, for whatever reason, WotC changes the "how to play" rules in publisehd versions of 5e. Would that mean that, retrospectively, it turns out you've been playing 5e wrong for all these years? In my view that would be a silly view to take. And I think it's equally silly for you to tell me that I should recognise this huge contrast between 4e and 5e about player and GM roles when, in fact, I played 4e in accordance with the published rules and thus did not experience any such contrast! (And to be clear, I'm not disputing that there is a difference - I've identified it multiple times in this thread - but it's a difference about the principles according to which a ch...


Page 1 of 54 123456789101151 ... LastLast
No results to display...

Monday, 27th May, 2019

  • 05:37 AM - 77IM quoted Hussar in post What proportion of the population are adventurers?
    Of course, never minding the percentage of classed individuals, what's the percentage of monsters? Even relatively low level monsters like dopplegangers could very quickly overwhelm a country. Illithids? In any significant numbers would be virtually unstoppable. And that's ignoring how undead spawn. Vampires would decimate an entire continent in a matter of weeks. The monster population maintains an equilibrium with the adventurer population.
  • 04:33 AM - Bedrockgames quoted Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    Yeah. Again, the last six or seven pages of this "discussion" has all been because folks absolutely refuse to pin down what definition of "literary" they would like us to use. If Literary=high art, then this discussion is, for all intents and purposes, over because we all agree that RPGing isn't meant to be high art. So, Bedrockgames, Aldarc, and anyone else who cares to weigh in, would you PLEASE define your terms. What do YOU mean by "literary". Not, playstyle or any other dodge, or comparisons to baking a cake. What do YOU mean, and we'll discuss using THAT definition. Because, boys and girls, until such time as you folks want to plant the goal posts, this conversation is just going to keep circling the same rabbit hole. Maxperson is, if we use his definition of literary, 100% correct. But, if we use pemerton's definition, he's 100% wrong. So, which definition do you want us to use? Pick one, stick with it, and we can move on. The people making assertions about the lite...

Sunday, 26th May, 2019

  • 12:27 PM - Bedrockgames quoted Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    Yup. And an RPG without performance or any sort of eye towards literary notions like pacing, character development, tone, etc, is a board game. No it isn't because in an RPG the players are identifying with their character. In Risk you have to move pieces on the board and you can't go beyond the premise. RPGs are as if you allowed the players to play single individuals in the army and explore the world or go on adventures at the ground level. That doesn't necessitate character development, pacing, tone, etc. It can include those things. But it doesn't have to have them. Particularly if you are using them in the literary sense.
  • 12:24 PM - Bedrockgames quoted Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    While I can see the point of RPGing =/= literary when the definition of literary=high art, fair enough, the notion that you, as a DM do not need to be concerned with narrative techniques is flat out false. But I am just talking to my players and I run games without trying to advance some kind of plot of story on the party. I want to be surprised by the outcomes as much as my players. And I don't want my communication style to feel like words on a page. Obviously, I am not sitting there with a frown coldly issuing details. I am engaged in a conversation. I am just not thinking in the terms you appear to be thinking while I do so. Again, I don't know why this is so hard for you to understand. I don't see my game as high literature, but I also don't see it as emulating anything to do with novels either. It is a totally different medium. EDIT: I want to give some specific examples here so it is more apparent what is going on in my game and move away from the generalizations and abstract princip...
  • 12:21 PM - Bedrockgames quoted Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    Really, you are not concerned about narrative techniques? At all? So, when you create a situation, things like tone, pacing, mood, character development, exposition, and a host of other things are not a concern at all? You create adventures like that random dungeon I posted a few pages back and you're good to go? . I don't run random dungeons, but I don't worry about pacing, tone, mood, character development, exposition or any of that stuff. I let the players lose, and treat NPCs as live moving parts in the setting. i don't have adventure arcs, character arcs, or any of that stuff in mind. I don't worry about pacing at all. I just let things unfold at the table at their own pace. It is a game. i don't need to control pace. Obviously I put effort into making the world, into making the NPCs, into figuring out what is going on around the PCs, what challenges might exist out there, etc. But I am not treating the running of it like I am a narrator or story teller, and I don't employ literar...
  • 10:40 AM - Aldarc quoted Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    Yup. And an RPG without performance or any sort of eye towards literary notions like pacing, character development, tone, etc, is a board game.But these are not distinctly literary notions. Pacing, character development, and tone, etc. all exist within film media, for example, but these are not regarded as "literary." This is a categorical issue.
  • 06:13 AM - Tony Vargas quoted Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    REH is "literary"? Seriously? A minor genre author who wasn't good enough to actually publish a novel and is virtually unheard of outside of genre circles is "literary"? CONAN qualifies as literature? Yes. He practically created the S&S genre, and his writing broke with tradition, he was the freak'n Henry Miller of pulp. literary=high art stuff like Shakespeare or whatnot. Which, fair enough, if that's our definition, certainly RPGing is not a literary endeavour. Well, Shakespear wrote the Temest, and it's wizard, Prospero, /used a spellbook/, so, yeah, D&D is totally emulating high art, there.

Saturday, 25th May, 2019

  • 11:58 PM - Lanefan quoted Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    Are you seriously saying that "Hey that looks like the critter from Men in Black" is an in character speech? That your NPC's would "get" the joke and react to it as a joke rather than as the complete gibberish it is from their point of view? Ok. Now, since you keep insisting on "lots of people" to support your argument, would you argue that completely anachronistic comments being taken as in character role play is commonly accepted? That your DM/GM, upon hearing you state something 100% outside of genre and the game, would automatically assume that you made these comments in character? In order to put an end to otherwise-ceaseless out-of-game chatter I have in the past occasionally done exactly this - made it clear to all that anything said henceforth by any player would be assumed to have been said by that player's character even if it didn't make any sense in the fiction (unless what's said is directly related to the game e.g. an action declaration, a request for DM clarification, e...
  • 04:24 PM - Umbran quoted Hussar in post STAR TREK: PICARD Official Trailer
    Was that the voice of Michael from Discovery? I am guessing not, though I cannot be sure, of course. It sounds a whole lot like the actress Gin Torres (Zoe, from Firefly). But it perhaps more likely someone who is a series regular.
  • 08:29 AM - Paul Farquhar quoted Hussar in post So...keelboats
    Umm, not even remotely. The Chinese were sailing around the world while the Vikings could barely leave the North Atlantic. I don't know what history books you have been reading (perhaps produced by the Chinese Communist party?) but that's rubbish. The ancient Chinese achieved many things, but great explorers they weren't. The Polynesian people travelled much further in that part of the world - their ships where basic, but their navigation was far superior. As for the vikings, they explored the Mediterranean and North Africa as well as crossing the Atlantic. And they went to (and settled) Russia too, because longships can also navigate rivers and be carried over land by their crew. Why would elves have better ships than everyone else? Why not? It's not like D&D is a history simulator, and in the real world technology has always varied across different regions and cultures.
  • 06:40 AM - pemerton quoted Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    I guess, at the end of the day, I'm just not seeing the division. If the DM and players are narrating their hearts out/doing their best to perform their characters, then protagonism is going to happen automatically.I've not just heard rumours of, but have played through, counter-examples to this. Mostly in an AD&D 2nd ed context, but also CoC and Rolemaster. You can't perform your character without becoming the protagonist. It's just not possible.That's not my experience. You could perform your dwarf - reciting old bits of lore from the dwarvish halls, complaining about the quality of the local ale, remarking on the state of your beard, swearing oaths "by the Mountains of Moradin", etc - while all the while the game rolls of the GM's "plot wagon" much as it would if you were performing an elf instead. I've lived through this. (Though I was playing a version of a Teutonic Knight rather than a dwarf.) Protagonism without performance is what we do in board games, not RPG's.I don't t...
  • 04:15 AM - 77IM quoted Hussar in post So...keelboats
    Well, the problem you get into here is anachronism. Anachronisms in D&D? I think that ship has sailed.
  • 04:14 AM - Bedrockgames quoted Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    It's no different than the folks that insist that Edition X isn't really a Role Playing Game. It's self serving twaddle and borderline trolling. And, frankly, I'm being to suspect that it was done with a complete disregard to good faith. Except this seems a lot closer to your position to me. Because you are the ones saying GMs must or should be striving for high literary quality description (or at least descriptions of a certain quality), and others here are telling you this isn't how we role play. But you keep insisting it is a necessary part of role-playing. So it is the same kind of argument you see people make about edition X not being a roleplaying game.
  • 03:50 AM - pemerton quoted Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    that excludes vast swaths - LARPing, more story oriented gaming, etc - of the hobbyI've got no idea where this comes from. As far as I know I'm the only Prince Valiant player who posts on these boards; am the only Cthulhu Dark player who posts on these boards; have played more Burning Wheel than most posters on these boards; am one of the relatively few posters whose primary point of reference for RPGing is not some version of D&D. I'm not "excluding" story-oriented gaming. I'm analysing it, and contrasting it with pseudo-"story" RPGing of the sort advocated by (say) the 2nd ed AD&D books. It's no different than the folks that insist that Edition X isn't really a Role Playing Game. It's self serving twaddle and borderline trolling. And, frankly, I'm being to suspect that it was done with a complete disregard to good faith.I don't think anyone could say that I don't make my views and preferences clear. Do you have this sort of view about criticism in general, or is it only RPGs tha...
  • 02:27 AM - hawkeyefan quoted Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    Really? So, you think there is a correct answer to what makes a good baseball player? An answer that everyone will agree with? Seriously? You honestly think the answer isn't "all of the above"? Or, better yet, what makes a good movie? or a good book? Or a good pretty much anything. I think there are many answers to those questions, yeah. I donít know if theyíre ďcorrectĒ because itís all a matter of opinion. And no, I donít expect people to agree, but Iíd like to hear their opinions. The answer ďall of the aboveĒ may be true. But itís boring. Pick something and discuss.
  • 01:54 AM - Morrus quoted Hussar in post STAR TREK: PICARD Official Trailer
    Had to hunt a bit. Found one from Brazil. Interesting. Was that the voice of Michael from Discovery? Wanna share your findings? Or are you just taunting us? ;)
  • 01:06 AM - hawkeyefan quoted Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    I would have thought by now that the answer to that has been made pretty clear. They are BOTH important. Sometimes one might be more important than the other, but, at the end of the day, one without the other leads to crap games. A DM who only presents in simple sentences, never uses a compound sentence, never uses a simile or metaphor, never uses any literary technique whatsoever in his or her game would be boring as heck. You can't avoid using literary techniques when gaming. It's virtually impossible. Or, put it another way, there's a reason The Forest Oracle is seen as the worst module ever. pemerton is attempting this reductionist argument that one thing and one thing only matters to running a good game. I reject such notions. Running a game, just like anything else, is complicated and requires many factors. It's no different than asking, "What one thing makes a good baseball player". What is the most important thing about being a baseball player? Yes exactly. Pe...

Friday, 24th May, 2019

  • 03:24 PM - hawkeyefan quoted Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    Just to continue on my last post. An interesting situation delivered poorly will result in a bad game as the session stumbles along at a glacial pace because the GM fails to communicate the situation to the players. OTOH a poorly thought out situation where the players have no stake in the outcome probably wonít be saved by good presentation. So at the end of the day, you are asking for a simplification to a complex act that cannot be reduced down to a single point. "Poorly" is where I get confused. Who wants poor delivery by the GM? People have said that the quality of the GM's delivery is not the most important thing to them....but that doesn't mean they want or expect crap delivery. As an advocate of quality narration, and use of evocative language and/or literary techniques to strengthen your game, does that mean that you expect your content to be bland and meaningless? I don't think anyone is denying that good GMing, or roleplaying in general, is the result of many...
  • 12:25 PM - Bedrockgames quoted Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    An interesting situation delivered poorly will result in a bad game as the session stumbles along at a glacial pace because the GM fails to communicate the situation to the players. . I think this is the part a lot of us disagree with. Obviously at a certain point, it may start to impact play for us. But the whole point of emphasizing conversational GMing is that it is a bit expected players may want or need to ask for clarifications. We are fine with the 'flow' being disrupted because it is a back and forth conversation to help establish things. From my viewpoint, how the GM delivers information is much less important than what that information is. And the issue you raise here isn't really about quality, it doesn't matter in this moment if the GM describes it evocatively. Your point is really more about clarity (does the GM describe it clearly). That can definitely matter, but it isn't going to make the session bad in my view as long as I can gain clarity by asking questions.
  • 10:30 AM - pemerton quoted Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    pemerton. Nice tautological definitions there. Until such time as youíd care to plant the goal posts, this discussion regardless of how much blather you want to add, is pointless. Well not for me. Just to point to two things that have come out of it: I've learned that your conception of what makes for good RPGing is quite different from mine. And I've discovered a surprising point of overlap between me and Bedrockgames. Given what you prefer, I can see why you want well-written boxed text in modules.


Hussar's Downloads

  Filename Total Downloads Rating Files Uploaded Last Updated

Most Recent Favorite Generators/Tables

View All Favorites