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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Yesterday, 03:39 PM
    I see. So TTRPG systems and play are not objective things and cannot be analyzed empirically and anyone that attempts to do so is a big jerk? Is that pretty much the gist? Following from that, youíve just wasted my (and others) time with a rhetorical request to evaluate 5e that you obviously had no interest in engaging with. Feels bad. Please donít make such requests, get sincere...
    720 replies | 20113 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Yesterday, 02:52 PM
    * The ďLight ClockĒ in Torchbearer and how all of the other game mechanics are integrated perfectly with it and how, working in concert, they bring home the intended play experience (cognitive space inhabited, mood, theme, pace). * Same thing goes for Blades in the Dark with its holistic integration of all of its system machinery which engenders bold, devil-may-care scoundrels, each uniquely...
    44 replies | 1543 view(s)
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Yesterday, 02:10 PM
    I donít know what the point of this response was. It doesnít engage with anything Iíve said. You wonít me to...say that I donít know what Iím talking about? Huh? Further, itís a claim about me that has absolutely no evidence to back it up. What claim from ignorance do you think that Iím making that isnít backed by evidence and wonít stand up under scrutiny? If youíre looking for an example...
    720 replies | 20113 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Friday, 19th July, 2019, 08:03 PM
    Which is why I regularly encourage people to play more and different types of games. And I also regularly recommend people (at least in my life) be willing to have the self-awareness and humility to say ďI donít know.Ē I donít understand this modern phenomena of being unwilling to simply recognize that you donít know what you donít know. There are lots of things I donít know...even in the...
    720 replies | 20113 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 19th July, 2019, 12:54 PM
    Now that I can't really argue with. 4e modules, particularly early ones, were egregiously bad. To be fair, the Dungeon ones got better towards the end - the Chaos Scar adventures were actually a ton of fun. On the other hand, magic items in 4e were what you made them. My rogue with a life draining dagger and my warlock with the Crown of Winter were both fascinating to play. Again, it's...
    196 replies | 12971 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 19th July, 2019, 11:00 AM
    LOL. I always shake my head when folks say this. Hrm, 2 step recovery system, skill system that is virtually identical (strip out the level adjustments from 4e and you get the 5e skill system), every class is built on the same model, instead of powers, nearly every class gets spells, many of which do the same things that powers did in 4e. What else... oh, removing the need for magic items -...
    196 replies | 12971 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 19th July, 2019, 09:25 AM
    Larger than man sized target.
    124 replies | 2826 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 19th July, 2019, 09:20 AM
    Heh. It feels that way because of the presentation. It's certainly not the mechanics which are virtually identical to 4e. If 5e is the proper successor to 3e, then 4e was as well. But, the trick that WotC has performed has been to convince everyone that 4e and 5e are not related at all, while, at the same time, retaining virtually all of the mechanics of 4e. The primary difference between...
    196 replies | 12971 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th July, 2019, 10:35 PM
    If you've never been a grappler, it will be a little bit difficult to attempt to convey things conceptually, but Chess (which I suspect you've played or at least had exposure to) should suffice. Look at grappling (Brazillian Jiu-jitsu in particular) as a series of decision-trees where your opponent is imposing ever-progressing catch-22s upon you as they control you (takedown > deployment of a...
    720 replies | 20113 view(s)
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th July, 2019, 04:00 PM
    My posts on this subject over the years (and in this thread) involve pretty intensive analysis on why resolution procedure/GMing technique/reward cycle/play ethos/PC build setup (a) objectively provides a different experience than(b) in many different areas (from table handling time to distribution of authority to intraparty balance to party: obstacle balance to cognitive workload and on and on)....
    720 replies | 20113 view(s)
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th July, 2019, 03:15 PM
    U Weíre complicated animals who live complicated lives. And these games, all of them, are complicated, relatively speaking. Nothing is ever one thing. But I think the line of evidence that I love running something like Dogs, something like 4e, while having many times more experience (and just as much enjoyment) with Moldvay Basic and AD&D1e is a pretty strong one.
    720 replies | 20113 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th July, 2019, 02:03 PM
    Iím not Campbell, but Iíll throw some words at this from GMing perspective. Its definitely true that most people almost surely enjoy the experience of games they like, and through their affinity they develop or have a natural aptitude for better play. Humans have pretty extreme neurological diversity, so I would say that itís trivially true that cognitive predispositions and mental...
    720 replies | 20113 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th July, 2019, 12:29 PM
    Heh, my snark aside, it really is an attempt to compare apples and oranges. Because, sure, you had a lot of save or die type monsters in 2e and, again depending on the character stats, parties could really vary. The trick about comparing across edition is that 3e changed every single aspect of the math of the game. Sure, you could have this or that build - but, now we're getting away from low...
    124 replies | 2826 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th July, 2019, 11:31 AM
    Ok, let's use Snakes. Medium viper in 3e deals d6/d6 Con damage DC Fort 11. Fail the save and you could lose up to 12 con from each bite. You die at 0 con. That 2e viper was only lethal about 15% of the time: And even then you were generally at a +2 to your saving throw - that's a what, 7 for a 1st level fighter? I'm getting the feeling that lowkey13 was maybe closer to right than...
    124 replies | 2826 view(s)
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th July, 2019, 05:23 AM
    I agree. The GM's primary role in TTRPGing (outside of a few instances) is (a) to know what adversity is relevant to this particular play and (b) bring that adversity to bear against the PCs in the imagined space in the most interesting/compelling/challenging/provocative (and these will be contingent upon the game) way possible. Above I mentioned a Dogs play excerpt. The adversity I...
    720 replies | 20113 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th July, 2019, 05:01 AM
    Honestly I think the math here is right out to lunch. Because 3e monsters have stats and stat bonuses, by and large the do about three times more damage per round than 2e monsters. While 3e did give pcs some more hps, they certainly donít have three times as many. Try this for a test. Single 1st level fighter vs 5 orcs. Which edition fighter survives? My money is on the 2e fighter. He can...
    124 replies | 2826 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th July, 2019, 04:47 AM
    Of course this also ignores the fact that a by the core 2e fighter does about six or seven times more damage per round than virtually any other edition fighter of an equal level. I mean even without a str bonus a 2e fighter with longsword specs and a short sword vs a dragon pumps out potentially 36 points of damage on even rounds and 24 on odd rounds. Letís see any edition first level...
    124 replies | 2826 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th July, 2019, 04:31 AM
    Being more progressive than E E Smith is like being Valedictorian at summer school.
    18 replies | 717 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th July, 2019, 01:29 AM
    I suppose it depends on how humanlike you want to get. Are we talking something like what I posted above or something that would fit into Blade Runner? Then again Legion had the Vermillion androids. Definitely androgynous.
    18 replies | 717 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th July, 2019, 12:03 AM
    To be totally fair, what would be the point? Why would you make a very realistic humanoid robot where you have to give it gender based features, only to then blur those features to remove any gender markers? That seems a lot of expense for very little gain. I suppose the Japanese robot Pepper might qualify.
    18 replies | 717 view(s)
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Wednesday, 17th July, 2019, 11:59 PM
    Jim McGarva has a perfect catch-phrase for this sprinkled throughout the Strike (!) rulebook, which is basically a riposte to all of the stuff we heard about with genre-incoherent drift in 4e: "DON'T DEMAND NONSENSE!" One such quip is on fictional positioning and permissible action declarations: If I'm running Dogs and the player thinks someone is under the thrall of demonic...
    720 replies | 20113 view(s)
    3 XP
  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Wednesday, 17th July, 2019, 05:27 AM
    Can you explain more what you mean about not being sure about incentives? Not sure about incentives interfacing with the decision-tree in a moment of thematic choice? Incentives that push back against the impetus to establish a win condition for a scene/arc or create extra obstacles to that win condition in exchange for advancement? Something else? Paragraph 1 Response: That makes...
    720 replies | 20113 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 17th July, 2019, 05:26 AM
    But, no one is saying that. No one is saying that you can change a success into a failure. What is being talked about is that if the Player defines success, then the GM cannot. Which is a constraint on the game that some of us don't want. OTOH, it appears that Pemerton want's failure to always be some sort of success (fail forward) at all times. Which again, is a restriction on the...
    720 replies | 20113 view(s)
    3 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 16th July, 2019, 11:23 PM
    Well, all I can say is that this has very much not been my experience. As soon as you get away from D&D, suddenly race of the character seems to matter - things like clan in Vampire and whatnot. But, yeah, if you stripped out racial stats from the game, the only people who would play non-humans would be those actually interested in portraying a character as something other than just a human...
    107 replies | 3903 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 16th July, 2019, 03:19 PM
    This is your very first post on the boards? Well, welcome aboard bud. I'm sure you'll make friends in no time. :p
    196 replies | 12971 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 16th July, 2019, 09:13 AM
    There is far too much truthiness in this post. :D But, the point about the Star Wars Cantina is well made. And it's funny because if you actually play Star Wars, no one plays aliens that are just humans with funny ears. No one plays a Wookie and doesn't play up that fact. Or a whatever race. Star Trek as well. You don't see Vulcan characters that are just identical to the humans. People...
    107 replies | 3903 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 16th July, 2019, 08:42 AM
    But, what it cannot be is a success narration if the player decided that is not what the PC searches for. IOW, Lanefan's point about narrowing possible resolutions does stand. A success can only be what the player decides.
    720 replies | 20113 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 08:23 AM
    I'm not sure I'd include Heinlein as being "sophisticated". At least as far as gender issues go. Funny thing is, if you click the link, there's a big red button for an additional thought to the comic: Kinda funny.
    18 replies | 717 view(s)
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 06:30 AM
    So I've skimmed the recent bits of the thread. In a follow-up post, I'm going to relay a recent PC:PC social conflict in Strike (!) and invite folks to chime in on how they perceive this anecdote (a) contrasts with gameplay where social conflict isn't formalized and (b) there are neither mechanical feedbacks nor PC build components involved. But first, I want to post some text from Strike (!)...
    720 replies | 20113 view(s)
    4 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 04:28 AM
    Just a bit of a tweak to the nose. :D from http://smbc-comics.com/comic/golden-age
    18 replies | 717 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 12:35 AM
    Gimme a break. No one is telling you to conform. You are being asked to not fling poo every single time the issue comes up. Heís got a point. There is NOTHING stopping you from having 2e style tieflings in your game. Zero. Zip. Nada. So why are you trying to force everyone else to adhere to your tastes?
    104 replies | 3375 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Friday, 12th July, 2019, 06:26 PM
    The original Terminator (i.e. the T-800 that was destroyed in Terminator), or an aged model of the original Terminator? Maybe the person the T-800 was modeled after? Curious how they are going to explain this. Was it stated that John Connor was dead?
    36 replies | 906 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 12th July, 2019, 01:10 AM
    Thatís your definition of small? Ok. I can see why you think the way you do.
    104 replies | 3375 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 12th July, 2019, 12:33 AM
    Very pretty. And, oh look, North is at the top of the map. :D :p
    58 replies | 9456 view(s)
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Thursday, 11th July, 2019, 11:28 PM
    I run two versions of D&D; 4e and Moldvay Basic. So the answer is while D&D 4e can scratch an itch similar to Mouse Guard, Cortex+ , Dungeon World, and Mouse Guard, it and Moldvay Basic can't reproduce Dogs in the Vineyard, Apocalypse World, Dread, Blades in the Dark, Torchbearer, My Life With Master, Sorcerer, and Star Wars like Strike (!) and Scum and Villainy. Because system matters.
    88 replies | 3149 view(s)
    4 XP
  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Thursday, 11th July, 2019, 05:21 PM
    Ultima 1 got me into CRPG's...I played all of the Ultimas religiously. To me, the best was Ultima 7/ 7.5...a wonderful story, open world, and a game I can play over and over again. I absolutely loved the original D&D gold box Pool of Radiance. I also remember it was effing HARD!!
    8 replies | 302 view(s)
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  • steenan's Avatar
    Wednesday, 10th July, 2019, 04:41 PM
    I think the question is strange. It treats D&D as some kind of default, as if one needed a reason to play something different. For me, D&D was just one of the games I tried; neither the first nor the best one. In general, I prefer varied experiences. I switch between games to do something different. Sometimes, we play series of one-shots, jumping between games. At other times, we play...
    88 replies | 3149 view(s)
    6 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 10th July, 2019, 11:25 AM
    Shhhh. If you added this sort of thing, the edition warriors would have had the WotC dev's heads on pikes. After all, this is precisely what 4e did and apparently everyone hated it because it was a spectacularly bad idea. So bad of an idea that it retroactively kicked puppies before they were even born. So, good luck with this.
    224 replies | 5896 view(s)
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  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Tuesday, 9th July, 2019, 10:07 PM
    I recently watched KickBoxer (Jean-Claude Van Damme) on Netflix...I think that it may be the most 80's movie in existence. Training montage, sad JCVD roaming through the streets being sad...slow-mo action scenes with him making funny faces. The Running Man comes a close second.
    32 replies | 982 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 9th July, 2019, 11:04 AM
    Heh. Iím glad Iím not the only one.
    49 replies | 1931 view(s)
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Monday, 8th July, 2019, 06:52 PM
    This is where these conversations get so unwieldy. I mean...how is this question even conceived? OF COURSE THEY DO. If the point of play is (a) competitive integrity and (b) autonomy and expression of agency in decision points (and it is in this case; Gamism)...well, in any_activity where these things are the apex play priority, the legitimacy of (a) and (b) utterly depends upon win/loss...
    196 replies | 12971 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Monday, 8th July, 2019, 06:27 PM
    It was a fun movie, but there were some plot holes that were large enough to drive semi-trucks through. All-in-all, though...I enjoyed it. I particularly liked the return of J.K. Simmons as J. Jonah Jamison.
    10 replies | 518 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 8th July, 2019, 09:09 AM
    Never minding the number of sock puppet accounts people have as well.
    177 replies | 5977 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 8th July, 2019, 12:14 AM
    Hussar replied to No Magic Shops!
    Not sure I buy that Maxperson, since the last two modules I bought - Dragon Heist and Ghosts of Saltmarsh include rather lengthy rules additions. GoS contains all the rules needed for running naval combat, for example. So, it's not like modules are not a source of mechanics. Traditionally, as well, in D&D, modules have often served as the source for new mechanics or for adjustments of existing...
    960 replies | 46446 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 7th July, 2019, 05:03 AM
    Hussar replied to No Magic Shops!
    Heh. One of the most unfortunate things about 4e is a LOT of the really interesting stuff that came out for 4e came out after so many folks had left. Had they led with a lot of the stuff, they would have been much better off. :(
    960 replies | 46446 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 7th July, 2019, 04:42 AM
    Hussar replied to No Magic Shops!
    Funny how experiences differ. My 4e rogue believed that he was touched by a god (Kord) and that he was a prophet of Kord. He had a life stealing dagger (granted you x temp hp if you killed a target) and he consecrated all his kills to Kord. :D He wasn't really running on all 8 cylinders. :D "Souls for Kord" was a great line. But, that dagger became a major focus point (as well as a faintly...
    960 replies | 46446 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 7th July, 2019, 04:32 AM
    I'm no big fan of GNS theory, mostly because bringing it up tends to be like invoking Tolkien in RPG discussions - it's the geek version of Godwinning a thread and more time gets spent debating the theory than actually using it. But, Tony Vargas, I do think you are way off base here. GNS theory is not exclusionary at all. It's, as Lost Soul above pointed out very concisely, simply a...
    196 replies | 12971 view(s)
    3 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 6th July, 2019, 08:08 AM
    Hussar replied to No Magic Shops!
    No. It didn't.
    960 replies | 46446 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 6th July, 2019, 07:57 AM
    No horse in this race, but, it's kinda interesting anyway. No. Matters in the sense that there will be mechanics in place to deal with this element. Thus, broken builds matter in a gamist game because they violate the win conditions - the same way that using a cheat code or an exploit in a video game violates the nature of the game. In non-gamist games, broken builds don't matter...
    196 replies | 12971 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 4th July, 2019, 11:07 AM
    Considering that in a given round of combat, you are likely having somewhere around 5 attack rolls per round (probably more), I find that very hard to believe. Two four round combats in a session (hardly a heavy combat session) would result in 40-60 attack rolls. I seriously doubt you have that many skill checks in a given session. But, even if you did, how much of an impact is guidance...
    132 replies | 65467 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 4th July, 2019, 11:01 AM
    Hussar replied to No Magic Shops!
    Note, that Ghosts of Saltmarsh makes buying magic items a la carte entirely possible. Granted, you might have to wait for Magic Amazon to deliver your bespoke item, but, it is entirely possible to buy magic items in Saltmarsh.
    960 replies | 46446 view(s)
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Thursday, 4th July, 2019, 01:40 AM
    Only very, very tacitly following this thread, but this caught my eye in a "what in the world...?" sort of way. I think this may in fact be a source of dissonance that you and I have in some of these conversations, particularly where it pertains to The Forge and, more specifically, "system matters." The most fundamental core mechanic of VtM and White Wolf games is "The Golden Rule" or...
    196 replies | 12971 view(s)
    4 XP
  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Wednesday, 3rd July, 2019, 06:16 PM
    You young whippersnappers don't understand the concept of core classes. Back in my day, we walked to school uphill both ways in the snow with no shoes on, and we only had 3 core classes (fighting-man, magic-user, and cleric), and we were HAPPY to have them! Now get off my lawn!!!!
    60 replies | 2003 view(s)
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  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Wednesday, 3rd July, 2019, 06:12 PM
    Stupid double post! It's those youngsters, I tell ya!!!!!
    60 replies | 2003 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 3rd July, 2019, 10:04 AM
    It's really fiddly. :D
    1012 replies | 72035 view(s)
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Wednesday, 3rd July, 2019, 03:55 AM
    Good post. I think one of the big problems we have in this sort of discussion relates to your first paragraph. There is a common refrain shared by a lot of TTRPG players that people (in this case their PCs) possess a level of cognitive continuity and coherency, or a lack of disunity among the various mental states and hardware that we all inhabit/deploy simultaneously, the sum of which...
    720 replies | 20113 view(s)
    5 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 2nd July, 2019, 09:45 PM
    Well, no. A +6 would change the success rate from 1/8 to 3/8 - a tripling of success rates due to the bonus. Something that bumps almost half of your failures into successes is a major change. Something that bumps one failure out of eight into a success isn't going to have a whole lot of impact on the game, especially when a single character is unlikely to make more than about 8 skill checks...
    132 replies | 65467 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 2nd July, 2019, 09:41 PM
    That died down very, very quickly outside of a poster or two (hello Mr. V). I certainly didn't see the forums as "full of 4e fans". I saw some quibbling that very quickly disappeared. But, again, we've all got our own bias filters. :D
    1012 replies | 72035 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 2nd July, 2019, 02:23 PM
    But, that's the point I've made already. "Huge impact"? Really? Succeeding 1 in 8 more times than you would without the spell? How is that a "huge impact"? I'm seeing lots of theorycrafting and very, very little actual evidence. And, I'd point out that other than this thread, which was necro'd, this has been a virtual non-issue for the past five years. If it has such a massive...
    132 replies | 65467 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 2nd July, 2019, 02:21 PM
    Now, when I say it's close to 4e, I'm talking about the mechanics. 2 step resource recovery, a multitude of preroll mechanics, virtually all classes being built around a suite of special abilities (typically spells for most of the classes). Very little niche protection. Overnight HP recovery and virtually unkillable PC's. And that's just off the top of my head. When you say it's close to...
    196 replies | 12971 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Tuesday, 2nd July, 2019, 11:59 AM
    Any game that encourages the GM (myself) to covertly or overtly subordinate player decision-points or action resolution mechanics (and through it the integrity of player decision points) to their personal conception of what play trajectory should look like. So much of late 80s through mid 90s TTRPG design. Iíve run many of these games or sat in on them, so itís probably too late for that.
    111 replies | 8384 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 2nd July, 2019, 11:13 AM
    Heh. DM'd today and I made a mistake. I thought that Guidance in 5e was d4+1, not d4. Player piped up and said, "Isn't that d4?" Me: No. It's d4+1 Player: Are you sure? Me: Well, I was until you said that. One sec. Whoops, you're right. D4. To me, that's the job of a rules guru. I had a number wrong, not a MASSIVE mistake, but, a mistake, I fixed it and we moved on. ...
    95 replies | 3895 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 2nd July, 2019, 11:05 AM
    Well, of course not. Since most of the mechanics were cribbed from 4e, admitting that 5e's mechanics are the reason for 5e's popularity would require folks to admit that 4e had some good ideas and that's just not going to happen. :D
    1012 replies | 72035 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 2nd July, 2019, 10:47 AM
    Nope, that would be me. The greatest trick WotC pulled off was reskinning 4e and selling it as 5e. Because, frankly, there's so much of 4e in 5e mechanically. 4e was just as much the DM's game as 5e was since so much of 4e was about reskinning, refluffing and page 42. I mean, good grief, I never even opened the 4e monster manual because writing up my own monsters was faster and easier. ...
    196 replies | 12971 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 2nd July, 2019, 10:41 AM
    You can't have it both ways. You can't on one hand talk about how it's providing a 10% bump (on average) on a d20 roll and then talk about how that's game breaking. If it's only going to matter 1 in 8 times, which is what you said, then, well, that's pretty much precisely how useful it is. Why would you say that 5e thinks it matters? It is a cantrip after all. The writers seem to think that...
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  • steenan's Avatar
    Monday, 1st July, 2019, 08:51 PM
    While I like many systems, I put Fate at the top of my list 1. Aspects and fate point economy. A beautiful way of making various facts of the fiction tangible and meaningful. Compels help in introducing complications that the players are interested in. 2. Concessions and stress-out. Making failure and loss interesting instead of game-ending, thus incentivizing players to embrace troubles...
    47 replies | 3295 view(s)
    3 XP
  • steenan's Avatar
    Monday, 1st July, 2019, 08:44 PM
    Exalted. I fell in love with the setting, but the system was awful - overwhelmingly complicated and completely unbalanced. I tried several different rulesets instead. Ended up running a very satisfying campaign with a Fate-based system. Cthulhutech. The concept is inspiring, but both the rules and the setting details are bad. I'm still looking for a game that would give me the kind of...
    111 replies | 8384 view(s)
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  • steenan's Avatar
    Monday, 1st July, 2019, 07:42 PM
    Isn't this what the IIEE framework for resolution is about? There are two separate but connected parts of an action a player declares. What the character does (in a "thin" sense) and what the player wants to achieve. Action description is necessary to give it a solid form in the fiction. Intent is necessary because that's what gets resolved. As soon s the action and intent are known it's...
    720 replies | 20113 view(s)
    4 XP
  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Monday, 1st July, 2019, 07:36 PM
    Might even make Drizzt somewhat palatable... Ooooo!!! And his teeth could play Gwenwyvhar!
    56 replies | 2242 view(s)
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  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Monday, 1st July, 2019, 07:02 PM
    Danny DeVito
    56 replies | 2242 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 1st July, 2019, 06:46 AM
    Oh no. That was 100% personal based on the rules interpretations youíve tried to argue in the past.
    95 replies | 3895 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 1st July, 2019, 01:47 AM
    Like I said, it's going to matter 1 in 8 times. You will succeed on a skill check 1 time more out of the 8 times you failed. This isn't going to make much of a difference in the long term. You are still failing 7 times. Can't really see how that's changing the game too much.
    132 replies | 65467 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 1st July, 2019, 01:44 AM
    This is a truly horrifying thought.
    95 replies | 3895 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 1st July, 2019, 01:42 AM
    Not sure why you say that when the number of gamers and the market have been growing year on year for five or so years now and show no signs of decline. For example, the 5e PHB is STILL in the top 100 on Amazon. If new gamers had peaked, you'd think they'd slow down sales of core books.
    196 replies | 12971 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 30th June, 2019, 02:45 AM
    OTOH, in play, an effective +2 generally isn't breaking anything. How often is the difference between success and failure the difference of the Guidance d4? Sure, it's handy, and I'll say that it's something every character that can cast it will have it in my group, but, overall? It's not really doing an awful lot. The Help action generally is more effective and pretty much anyone can do...
    132 replies | 65467 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 30th June, 2019, 02:32 AM
    But, in finding loopholes and exploits, the rules lawyer sucks all the fun out of the game and actively poisons the table. It's one thing to keep to the rules, that's fine, we're playing a game after all. But, deliberately looking for loopholes isn't playing the game that the rest of the table is playing. It's no different from online gamers who look for exploits in games to get ahead of...
    95 replies | 3895 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 30th June, 2019, 02:01 AM
    So, basically, what EVERY RPG company has been doing for the past forty or so years;.
    196 replies | 12971 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 30th June, 2019, 12:13 AM
    Let's be fair here. They've released, what, about a dozen books per year (or more) for the past 10 years. That's a frigging mountain of material. It's not unreasonable to want to update the system after that long, and that many hours of refinement. It's doubtful they'll go full on change. But, they do need to stanch the bleed of losing players to simply aging out. People move on from...
    196 replies | 12971 view(s)
    4 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 30th June, 2019, 12:02 AM
    epithet - to be honest, I find it hard to believe that you would think that this is a purely grammatical issue. It takes a special kind of myopia to look at gender roles in language and think, "Well, we'll ignore that massive cultural and historical baggage with this issue and focus entirely on the stuff that no one other than grammarians actually care about" and then stand back with wide eyed...
    1012 replies | 72035 view(s)
    7 XP
  • steenan's Avatar
    Saturday, 29th June, 2019, 09:18 AM
    Our long campaigns last for 20-30 sessions, 4-6 hours each. It translates to 1-2 IRL years. We have also played a few short (5-10 sessions) campaigns and a big number of single adventures (1-3 sessions). The campaigns generally last until they get an appropriate closure. None of our campaigns in the last 10 years fizzled and were abandoned halfway.
    53 replies | 2403 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 29th June, 2019, 04:34 AM
    I think it's a good idea to make the distinction between rules lawyer and what my group calls a rules guru. A rules guru is just someone who has an encyclopedic knowledge of the mechanics of the game and you can always ask her (in my group it's a her) for the rules and know that whatever she says is going to be right far, far more often than it's wrong. I LOVE rules gurus. Hug one today. ...
    95 replies | 3895 view(s)
    3 XP
  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Saturday, 29th June, 2019, 04:25 AM
    What do we call it when the GM subordinates the players' decision-points and/or the resolution mechanics' attendant outcomes to said GM's preconceived metaplot? And that's fine. But call it what it is. In fact, if you and your players are looking for that play experience, then being honest about what it is, openly analyzing the machinery of it, and getting better at deploying it should be a...
    59 replies | 2603 view(s)
    3 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 29th June, 2019, 04:16 AM
    No.
    1012 replies | 72035 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 29th June, 2019, 01:48 AM
    You've always been able to start a sentence with a preposition. It's ending sentences with prepositions that people refer to. :D
    1012 replies | 72035 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 28th June, 2019, 01:45 PM
    You are obviously playing the game entirely wrong dontchaknow? You aren't supposed to level that fast in classic D&D. You should still be second level after a hundred sessions. :D :uhoh: :p
    53 replies | 2403 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 28th June, 2019, 01:42 PM
    I believe, although I could be wrong, that someone was making a joke. :D
    1012 replies | 72035 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 28th June, 2019, 08:04 AM
    Umm, of course it is? Was there any question that the use of they as a singular pronoun isn't ideologically driven? That the whole point of the use is because of the ideological issues surrounding this? What did you think was driving this? Yes I am, and no I haven't. But, I have to admit, that's a right effective discussion strategy you've got going there. That's going to win...
    1012 replies | 72035 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 28th June, 2019, 05:27 AM
    With rapiers. Must not forget the rapiers.
    196 replies | 12971 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 28th June, 2019, 05:23 AM
    Meh. You'd almost think that every language in the world has this issue, other than it just being largely an English problem. I wonder how on earth all those other languages that don't use, or barely use, third person pronouns get along. Oh, noes. You might make a mistake because the writer isn't perfectly clear in pronoun use. The shock and horror that you might use something in a game...
    1012 replies | 72035 view(s)
    0 XP
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Tuesday, 16th July, 2019

  • 11:24 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Players choose what their PCs do . . .
    Hussar, Lanefan - if narrowing of possible resolutions = the GM being bound by the results of checks, than sure, any system other than "GM decides" will have that consequence. But unless the dice are rigged then fails are possible, in which case fail scenarios are possible resolutions, and there is no narrowing of the range of possible resolution.

Sunday, 30th June, 2019

  • 01:31 PM - Aldarc mentioned Hussar in post Is Pathfinder 2 Paizo's 4E?
    ...g to PF fans, some of which haven't even played 5E and thus can't see that you CAN design a fun game where martials and casters feel familiar yet different. (That is, what 4E couldn't offer)How dare Paizo listen to their playerbase and fans?! That's preposterous! You don't listen to your fans who play the game. You are supposed to listen to a singular doomsayer who doesn't play PF1 and who demands that Paizo makes his custom dream product based off a competitor's system and who also never participated in the playtest or shows any actual engagement or familiarity with the contents of PF2! :mad: I would have felt a lot less nervous if Paizo had exhibited clear tendencies to look at 5E and learn from it. Yet, most PF2 chatter I hear are about PF1 and 4E - two of the *least* appropriate games to build your future on in my opinion.Except when you combine them together, you essentially get 5e, and that is precisely what WotC did, Oh He of Short-Term Memory. As either Tony Vargas or Hussar has said - I can't remember which off the top of my head - the greatest trick that WotC did for 5E was in convincing people to play 4E in a game that looks more like 3E and Pathfinder.

Saturday, 22nd June, 2019

  • 01:54 AM - Aldarc mentioned Hussar in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    ... It's not about "blurring dualities". It's that your side of the argument isn't quite as clear as you might think. It's confusing. You're saying that vocabulary matters. Aldarc is very strongly saying that vocabulary doesn't. So, which is it? Now, me, I think I agree with you - vocabulary matters. Now, you don't think there's much value in using an extended vocabulary - that you "don't use big adjectives". Fair enough. That's where you and I disagree. I think that most DM's actually do slip into "big adjectives", mostly subconsciously, depending on what game you happen to be playing. But, Aldarc would say that we're both wrong and that "big adjectives" ISN'T what delineates conversation from boxed text. And, frankly, if vocabulary isn't the delineating element, I'm at a loss as to what is. What separates conversational language from prose language if it's not vocabulary choice? Is it false starts and repetition (both hallmarks of conversation vs reading)? What? Hussar, I would strongly appreciate it if you would stop constructing strawman arguments with my name attached and insisting that I am strongly saying anything that we both know you can't back up with evidence. It's rude and you're being a dick. Thankfully, I'm confident that Bedrockgames will exercise more sense than to bite at your misrepresentations of what I have said.

Friday, 21st June, 2019

  • 01:42 PM - Maxperson mentioned Hussar in post Why are we okay with violence in RPGs?
    I grew up in a very, very religious community. I think delusional is a strong word but I do think Celebrim is hitting on something that is real. There does seem to be a religious like impulse in the chasing of perfection here. And there is an ultimate evil that we are trying to purge (even when, as you yourself point out, it isn't fully evil itself, it is just imperfect---referring to your Tolkien example). And it does seem like the moment people disagree they start getting viewed as if they are the evil itself as well. Yep. As soon as I pointed out that Hussar is jumping at shadows, he demonized me and then left the thread to get away from "Satan."
  • 01:21 PM - Aldarc mentioned Hussar in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    I'm pretty much in the "it depends on the game" camp. I generally find that word choice is going to be necessary as a DM/GM simply because it's virtually impossible to separate running a game from any level of performance. We always choose specific language to fit the game, genre, mood and whatnot, which is, IMO, going to nudge things away from the conversational and towards the prose. This came up in the other thread where words like "wield" were used. That's a deliberate word choice for a fantasy RPG. You'd never use it in an SF RPG, for example. Han Solo wields his blaster? I don't think so. If we're playing a fantasy RPG, we're going to draw on fantasy language, probably subconsciously. If we play a modern RPG, our language is going to change.Just like in the other thread, you continually failed (miserably) to demonstrate that words like "wield" are non-conversational or "a deliberate word choice for a fantasy RPG." IMO, the phrase "wielding a gun", for example, is conversational...

Monday, 17th June, 2019

  • 03:45 PM - lowkey13 mentioned Hussar in post On the Inscrutability of AD&D and Ye Olde Styles of Play
    So, a recent comment in a thread had me thinking to myself, "Self, why do people say that all of AD&D was a certain way? Is this like a comedy routine? You know, 'Grognards be doin' it this way, and People that need to get off my lawn be doin' that way.'" Anyway, the specific thread/comment that had me thinking about this again is here- https://www.enworld.org/forum/showthread.php?659985-Why-are-we-okay-with-violence-in-RPGs/page18&p=7621612&viewfull=1#post7621612 And this is the excerpt: This shouldn't be terribly contentious. This is D&D after all. Y'know, back to the dungeon, the mega dungeon, dungeon crawling, that sort of thing? I mean, good grief, look at most modules published up until about 1982, which is a pile of them - they're pretty much nothing but hack fest dungeon crawls. (h/t Hussar ) So, I was thinking about this, and I thought that it was both accurate in some ways, but also ... well, it was also contentious. And the reason why boils down to what I would call the essential inscrutability of OD&D / AD&D / B/X . And since I have been ruminating over this for a while, I thought I would break out my thoughts on the issue, and why it's much harder to make general statements about how people played at that time than it is, say, to make statements regarding 5e. So, here goes! I'm sure this will go well ..... ;) 1. History of the World, Part I. "The Lord has given unto you these fifteen .... Oy, ten! TEN Commandments! For all to obey!" So, history is hard. And while some of us might discuss the release of the Efreeti-covered DMG at our local Waldenbooks like it was yesterday, others might reasonably point out that it happened 40 years ago. And a lot has changed in 40 years. It is easy to characterize and stereotype an era; when a blockbuster movie (like, say, Captain...

Thursday, 13th June, 2019

  • 05:31 AM - Hriston mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    I was speaking to the genesis of the tangent... but not sure how this changes what you said. What I said was in the context of Hussarís question about dungeon dressing, which relates directly back to the OP by equating dungeon dressing with ďthe literaryĒ, not the context of your tangent, which really does seem to miss the point because no one is saying the players are going to be interested in elements of dungeon dressing no matter how poorly theyíre described.
  • 02:48 AM - Hriston mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    Really?? Because I literally brought up this idea that how content was presented could in fact determine whether a group would be interested in the content earlier in the thread (and one of the reasons I thought of it as core to the game) and these were the replies... Emphasis mine. I don't know about @pemertonís post, but that post of mine you quoted was not made in reply to you or anything you said. I made it in response to @Hussarís post which directly preceded mine and which asked why dungeon dressing appears in most editions of the DMG.

Monday, 10th June, 2019

  • 12:41 AM - hawkeyefan mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    ... I using evocative language for? Without evocative language my players wont be engaged with the situation or scenario. If pressed I jot down situation or scenario notes with what I call keywords and improvise description with said keywords. Thatís understandable. Iím trying not to assume that there are only two views or that anyone is speaking for anyone else because I think thatís led to a lot of confusion throughout. Let me ask a question to pemerton, Hawkeye, Bedrockgames and Aldarc. Would you use the same words/language/etc. to describe a remote village in the mountains for say a Ravenloft campaign vs a Four color superhero game like Icons? let's assume good faith in that the Icons village isn't supposed to be haunted or anything tht would make it more Ravenloft-esque.... EDIT: Meant hawkeyefan ... Thatís a good question. Honestly, I think it depends on the situation and what youíre trying to do. I think that some variation of word choice is certain, as Hussar and I have recently discussed. I think with any of those examples, Iíd likely try to establish the tone early on. I think the genre or content will do a lot of the heavy lifting in that regard, but Iíd likely try to describe things in a way that would reinforce the desired tone. But I think that would be very front-loaded for me. Probably at each level of the game....campaign level, and then again at the session or scene level. But I think that my goal as a GM is to convey the ideas as quickly and clearly as possible. Iím not going to spend 25 words to describe the monster approaching the party when ďzombieĒ will do. So I want to get to that place where it all happens quickly and we proceed. I will be descriptive as needed, but I donít really want to linger on narration once weíre past the scene-setting point.

Sunday, 9th June, 2019

  • 02:25 PM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    ...pper style)Popper has a (controversial) theory of what makes a claim, or perhaps a collection of claims, scientific. I'm not making a scientific claim. I'm making an aesthetic claim. So Popperian falsifiability has nothing to do with it. My claim is about the point of RPGing, what makes it a distinctive and worthwhile creative endeavour. Not far upthread Aldarc has given a pretty good account of my claim, so I'll add a few glosses to that. I am saying that entertainment in virtue of quality narration and performance is not what makes RPGing a distinctive and worthwhile creative endeavour. Rather, it's situation and resulting inhabitation and protagonism. I've said why I think this: because quality narration and performance are the weakest elements of the typical RPG experience (given the ready availability to most RPGers of genuinely quality narrations and performances), whereas protagonism in the context of engaging situation is the distinct thing that RPGs offer. When Hussar and Imaro say that they would quit games with ordinary-language descriptions because they'd find them too boring, my thought in response is that those games must have weak situations, or GMs who don't facilitiate protagonism. After all, both experience and reading lead me to think there's plenty of that going around. To elaborate on that last point: Hussar has tended to equate situation with content referring eg to boring content. But as I've indicated in and since the OP, good situation isn't about non-boring content. It's about the call to action, the invitation to protagonism. As far as I can tell those sorts of notions play little or no role in Hussar's conception of RPGing - if they do, he hasn't said anything about them in this thread as best I can recall. Lanefan, too, has quite recently posted that a GM should use language to make situation "more interesting", and has said that "situation is always going to be there no matter what". But this second claim isn't true if ...
  • 05:41 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    But Iím beginning to see why weíre all having a hard time coming to a consensus....itís because we actually seem to have one, itís just that what I see as pretty basic communication, youíre viewing as carefully wrought wordplay.I don't agree that there's a consensus: I can't really tell what Maxperson thinks, but Imaro and Hussar have made claims about the need for entertaining/evocative narration that I think clearly contradict the position I asserted in the OP. But one complicating fact pertains to vocabularly: eg I wouldn't regard cadaverous as a word to describe a Githyanki as especially remarkable or a-conversational, but Hussar probably would, and maybe Bedrockgames also. What counts as every day vocabularly among a group of RPGers is pretty highly variable and contingent on a range of factors (social background/status, educational levels, occupation, etc). I'm a humanities/social sciene academic (philosophy and law) and many of the people I talk to on a regular basis (ie the people I work with, my students, etc) are lilkewise, or are aspiring to be. So I think my every day vocaublary is probably richer than the New York Times. This is why I have brought it back to what are we aiming for? What counts as success, as good RPGing? What should a GM focus on? And I'm saying situation - framing, action...
  • 05:33 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    Iím sure mine and pemertonís ideas donít exactly match, no. But thatís fine. I donít entirely agree with his premise, but I understand it, and I think he has a point. But Iím only speaking for myself. I would tend to think of "rictus grin" as falling on the literary side of things, as does Hussar. As I've posted, it does no harm if it doesn't impede (what I regard as) the real point of play. It has a face like a skull might do just as well. I personally can't remember how I've described githyanki in the past - I suspect I'm more likely to have shown a picture, such as the one on the front of the Fiend Folio. More generally, and feeding this into the current Maxperson - Ovinomancer interaction, I think that the role of description in RPGing is easily overestimated. It prioritises immersive imagination orver protagonistic inhabitation. Whereas the latter is the distinctive virtue of RPGs as games that are about producing a shared fiction. All this said, I think you've fully understood my points in this thread, seem to agree at least to some extent, and have made many helpful posts into it for which I thank you.

Saturday, 8th June, 2019

  • 09:29 PM - hawkeyefan mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    So is Alcatraz, but like your example it doesn't answer the question where they are. It could be an answer to how do you get to the elevator, though. For example, if I ask you where Los Angeles is, telling me to join the wagon train going west does not tell me where Los Angeles is. Telling me to get on that airplane over there does not tell me where Los Angeles is. I didn't ask you how to get there. I feel perhaps this is a bit pedantic. ďWhere are the elevators?Ē - ďFollow these guys.Ē It answers the question. The extras. Describing the grin as rictus, the sword as shining in the near darkness. Holding a silvery greasword is enough. Yellow skin is enough. Adding in leathery is a nice extra touch. To me, this is a very low bar then, and I doubt itís what was in mind with the OP. I feel like including a few adjectives isnít what weíre talking about. Thatís why I asked Hussar for an example of what he had in mind after providing my some of my own.

Thursday, 6th June, 2019

  • 01:36 PM - Sadras mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    I think that you underestimate, if not vastly exaggerate, the problem of communicating the basic ideas of the game. And we usually have a basic awareness of some cognitive contexts that our gaming group will likely have experienced. I could perhaps agree with you that there is some exaggeration from the other side, but I also feel you vastly reduce the importance of the language used within RPGs. @Hussar touched on this upthread, but I feel it requires to be reiterated - we have literally volumes of D&D supplements, magazines, books and fan-created material on settings, monsters, characters and the like. All that literal endeavour is not just to communicate the context and stakes in which their actions take place. Fluff is important for many gamers. I also agree with @Imaro in that if the DM is using conversational language to the point you seem to indicate in these posts (which I'm pretty sure you do not), I would quickly excuse myself from that table. As an aside, I have even used/stolen lines from fantasy novels, whether it be cool dialogue or an evocative description of something/someone, for my RP games. Words matter. I keep my 2e-4e MM not just for the mechanics, but also for the fluff. EDIT: Evocative words help fuel the players' imagination / immersive experience.
  • 10:13 AM - Aldarc mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    Or, Hussar, you can just tell players what the monster or thing is. It's not like evocative language is required for saying "Oh, Thor? You know that he is the god of storms in this land." Or "a githyanki is a race that lives in the astral sea that looks like this [shows picture]." If players want more detail, they can ask and initiate a conversation. I don't know why you present this as either evocative language or nothing.

Wednesday, 5th June, 2019

  • 02:57 PM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    ...finished speaking) a passive audience member to whatever I am narrating.I don't think this is true. I don't intend what follows to be triggering for anyone, and apologise if it is - I couldn't come up with a completely safe example. But, that said, and continuing on: If I relate to you the information that a bomb is about to go off in your building, I don't think you would be a passive audience. I think you would engage with what I'm saying in many quite active ways. Including, perhaps, certain sorts of interruptions, but not limited to those. EDIT: I think this post from Campbell, not far upthread, presents an idea of players as something different from a passive audience: What is fundamental to me is that we are all involved in the process as creative peers and everyone's contributions are valued equally. Also that everyone is expected to contribute. Also that contributions move play forward and demand action from other players (GM included). Conversely, a way upthread Hussar talked about a GM "rolling up the plot wagon". To me at least, that suggests a situation in which the players are something of a passive audience.
  • 10:03 AM - Sadras mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    Hussar's post reminded me of another thread many of us engaged in, I'm a little lazy now to go searching for a link but it was the thread about the blocked texts in published modules. It would be interesting to see which of us valued the blocked texts (even as a starting point) with those of us which strongly lean on wordcrafting being of significant importance in RPGing.

Tuesday, 4th June, 2019

  • 10:01 PM - Imaro mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    ...red eating pepperoni. That said, I am certain that if anyone who preferred pepperoni salami pizza genuinely believed that they were being unfairly excluded from a group ordering a cheese pizza when there are people with vegetarian, halal, or kosher diets present, then that person is probably a rude, self-centered dick who should be excluded though for reasons other than their pizza preferences. LMAO... you're really equating preference of little to no wordcraft with having life threatening allergies, religious belief systems and so on... this is really getting absurd... and I'm the one creating fallacies?? Here is what you said: Now, here is what pemerton actually wrote: His position was NOT that you can have narrative without wordcraft or that wordcraft isn't necessary, but that "the literary quality of that narration is [not] important." And I said as much when I summarized his OP. See and this is where it gets silly because "quality" as used here is never defined. Again as @Hussar said earlier if we are talking Shakespearean prose then we're all in agreement... but then it begs the question why start a thread about something so obvious and well uninteresting? What's the point if this is what you meant and why not just state it as such without all the back and forth. EDIT: On another note can anyone link a definition of literary quality that is objectively measurable, from a reputable source and widely accepted?

Wednesday, 29th May, 2019

  • 01:39 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    ...gement of the situation on the part of the PCs, that at its heart the issue is not performance but framing situations that invite protagonism.What darkbard says is correct, with one caveat that perhaps gets closer to the heart of Sadras's concern: I think that the invitation to action often requires spontaneity or real-time judgement in tthe back-and-forth; whereas wordcraft tends to benefit from reflection and editing. So I think there can be a degree of tension between the two. So there is a second claim, on top of the claim that literary quality is not core to RPGing. It is that, while everything else being equal literary quality (and the resulting entertainment) can be a good thing, everything else may often not be equal. I have tried to highlight the history of why this thread was created.And as I've already pointed out, you're wrong about this. As the OP says, it was prompted by multiple threads. Not just the boxed text thread; also the action declaration thread, in which Hussar was criticising some other posters for insisting on "talky talky" as key to action declaration, and they were trying to articulate a contrast between effective description for RPGing purposes and what I would call descriptions having literary merit. Hussar was sceptical of that distinction being drawn in that thread, so it doesn't surprise me too much that he's sceptical of such distinctions being drawin in this thread. What has surprised me, though, is that in that thread Hussar was against such descriptions and in favour of "I roll a climb check: 16", whereas in this thread he wants the players to bring the evocative descriptions. I'm not saying that Hussar is inconsistent, just that he's drawing his boundaries of desirability in a different place from what I had anticipated.

Tuesday, 28th May, 2019

  • 03:57 PM - lowkey13 mentioned Hussar in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    You are correct that @lowkey13 keeps asserting this. But you are both wrong in your characterization of @pemerton's position. Many times now he has articulated that all things being equal, literary presentation can improve the quality of a game, but that caveat requires that the core activity of TRPGing be not in the presentation itself but in the invitation to meaningful engagement of the situation on the part of the PCs, that at its heart the issue is not performance but framing situations that invite protagonism. I'm sure pemerton will correct me if I have inadvertendly mischaracterized his position. I would love to agree with you, but I have tried to highlight the history of why this thread was created. Then I left for a while, and I see that we are not only no closer to a resolution, but that when @Hussar tried to reach common ground with @pemerton, such attempt was rejected. So ... yeah, it is what it is. Personally, I don't care how permerton plays, or how you play, or how people want to define (and re-define) terms in order to keep this argument going ... But I'm just pointing out that this thread was created to advance an argument, wait ... let me quote again ... about where the aesthetic merit and aeshetic power of RPGIng lies, and therefore a view about what the point of RPGing ultimately is. To the extent someone is telling me what the REAL POINT of RPGing is ... well, they can pound sand. And I would expect them to say the same to me if I told them they were playing it wrong, because I knew "what the point of RPGing ultimately is."(tm). EDIT- And if you look back, you will see that way back when, I said that I have said that repeatedly- here: But to make this clear, again: Your opinions are fine. I think that you {the OP} often have a habit of universalizing your expe...


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Saturday, 20th July, 2019

  • 05:17 AM - R_Chance quoted Hussar in post Dragon Reflections #23
    Heh, thirty years before 4e, we already had HP=Meat arguments. :D I don't know anyone from back in the day in my group (1974 and later) who didn't believe that increasing hit points were the result of increasing skill / ability and, in general, immaterial factors (luck, the gods favor, etc.). The alternative would be... weird :D

Friday, 19th July, 2019

  • 07:50 PM - Ed Laprade quoted Hussar in post What it's like Reading SF from the 50's
    Being more progressive than E E Smith is like being Valedictorian at summer school. Well, he did get better right at the end. And even before that there was Children of the Lens, which was always supposed to be the ultimate book in the series. (In fact, it was supposed to be THE book. All the rest were just background material!) In it, he made it clear that the five kids were going to enter into an incestuous relationship to create the next race of galactic guardians, a pretty much taboo subject at the time.
  • 05:27 PM - Tony Vargas quoted Hussar in post Is Pathfinder 2 Paizo's 4E?
    LOL. I always shake my head when folks say this. Hrm, 2 step recovery system, every class is built on the same model, instead of powers, nearly every class gets spells, many of which do the same things that powers did in 4e, skill system that is virtually identical (strip out the level adjustments from 4e and you get the 5e skill system), What else... oh, removing the need for magic items - 4e used inherent bonuses, 5e just does without, umm, what else?You're not wrong about those being similarities, but they're not identical, and the play dynamic they generate can be /very/ different. The short/long rest distinction in 5e, for instance, is 1 vs 8 hrs, often time enough for one is time enough for the other, you just can't take more than one of the latter in a given 24 hr period - the design assumption is 2-3 short rest & 6-8 encounters per long rest, or about a short rest every-other encounter. In 4e the short rest is 5 min, virtually guaranteed between encounters. The latter is a...
  • 12:13 PM - CapnZapp quoted Hussar in post Is Pathfinder 2 Paizo's 4E?
    LOL. I always shake my head when folks say this. Hrm, 2 step recovery system, skill system that is virtually identical (strip out the level adjustments from 4e and you get the 5e skill system), every class is built on the same model, instead of powers, nearly every class gets spells, many of which do the same things that powers did in 4e. What else... oh, removing the need for magic items - 4e used inherent bonuses, 5e just does without, umm, what else? NPC's and PC's built on different rules, no magic item economy, spells attack stats, I'm sure I could come up with more. Having played and run both for about equal numbers of years, I can honestly say that if you think they're worlds apart and that 5e is closer to 3e, well, I'm not sure what you're looking at. I'm not denying the theoretical similarities. I'm telling you they look and feel completely different. 4E had an intense focus on the battle board. Every little push and move felt important and useful. While this made pl...
  • 10:52 AM - CapnZapp quoted Hussar in post Is Pathfinder 2 Paizo's 4E?
    The primary difference between 4e and 5e is the speed of combat. Outside of that, the game is virtually identical. What an odd thing to say. You come across as not having played either. I have played both 4E and 5E and they're worlds apart. For D&D games, that is. I guess you could say 5E is virtually identical to 4E compared to, say, Monopoly or Uno...

Thursday, 18th July, 2019

  • 07:41 PM - Kannik quoted Hussar in post Dragon Reflections #23
    Heh, thirty years before 4e, we already had HP=Meat arguments. :D Heh, even more "hilarious/interesting", given this unambiguous description of Hit Points as released in the AD&D Players Handbook a year prior: Each character has a varying number of hit points, just as monsters do. These hit points represent how much damage (actual or potential) the character can withstand before being killed. A certain amount of these hit points represent the actual physical punishment which can be sustained. The remainder, a significant portion of hit points at higher levels, stands for skill, luck, and/or magical factors. A typical man-at-arms can take about 5 hit points of damage before being killed. let us suppose that a 10th level fighter has 55 hit points, plus a bonus of 30 hit points for his constitution, for a total of 85 hit points. This is the equivalent of about 18 hit dice for creatures, about what it would take to kill four huge warhorses. It is ridiculous to assume that even a fantast...
  • 05:18 AM - Sacrosanct quoted Hussar in post 2e, the most lethal edition?
    Honestly I think the math here is right out to lunch. Because 3e monsters have stats and stat bonuses, by and large the do about three times more damage per round than 2e monsters. While 3e did give pcs some more hps, they certainly donít have three times as many. Try this for a test. Single 1st level fighter vs 5 orcs. Which edition fighter survives? My money is on the 2e fighter. He can kill five orcs in 2 rounds if heís lucky. Every other edition takes a lot longer. I'm still curious how you're figuring out a fighter does 50 points of damage with no strength bonus. Weapon specialization in 2e gives you a +1 to hit and +2 damage, and an extra attack on the 2nd, 4th, and subsequent even rounds. If you choose to have 2 weapons like you're saying, you suffer a -2 penalty to your primary weapon, and -4 penalty to your off hand weapon. Certainly you should account for that? Speaking of accounting for things, you're not accounting for save or die in TSR D&D. I see your test against...
  • 04:59 AM - Sacrosanct quoted Hussar in post 2e, the most lethal edition?
    At low levels, I'm inclined to agree with the OP. However, in the case of high level play, I'd consider 3.x the deadliest edition by a wide margin. In 1e/2e/BECMI your saving throws genuinely got better as you leveled up. In 3e, saving throws typically kept pace with DCs or fell behind. Also, monster damage rose considerably, while the maximum negative hp remained at -9. Admittedly, raising the dead was arguably a bit easier without system shock and the like, but I'm only considering frequency of death, not how often you might repeatedly die. I played a good amount of BECMI and 2e back in the day, and from what I recall death happened but was relatively infrequent. In 3e, there were campaigns where people were rolling up new characters almost every session. I remember one ill fated campaign that had two TPKs in the first game! The majority of these campaigns were with the same group, so it's not like I had a softie DM running 2e and a RBDM running 3e. This is admittedly anecdotal, but i...
  • 03:38 AM - Dannyalcatraz quoted Hussar in post What it's like Reading SF from the 50's
    To be totally fair, what would be the point? Why would you make a very realistic humanoid robot where you have to give it gender based features, only to then blur those features to remove any gender markers? That seems a lot of expense for very little gain. Well, I personally see the Heavenly Host from Doctor Who as a missed opportunity in that regard. While they are made to look like angels, their faces are mostly fairly masculine, while angels are supposed to be androgynous. So in this case, ďthe pointĒ would be making them more closely resemble what they are emulating. I could also see androgynous androids as being perceived as less threatening to both men and women. (Some, anyway...) Hell...an androgynous (possibly even childlike) robot could be a good espionage agent.
  • 12:17 AM - MarkB quoted Hussar in post What it's like Reading SF from the 50's
    To be totally fair, what would be the point? Why would you make a very realistic humanoid robot where you have to give it gender based features, only to then blur those features to remove any gender markers? That seems a lot of expense for very little gain. I could definitely see some people being more comfortable with a robot that is both recognisably human-like and also not specifically male or female. As an addition to a household or workplace, it could better integrate into social groups without any gender-based expectations or concerns.

Wednesday, 17th July, 2019

  • 06:16 AM - pemerton quoted Hussar in post Players choose what their PCs do . . .
    it appears that Pemerton want's failure to always be some sort of success (fail forward) at all times.I have neither said nor implied this. All I said was that Lanefan's example, in which the PC doesn't achieve what the player hoped for, is not a success and hence might be a feasible failure narration.

Tuesday, 16th July, 2019

  • 10:04 AM - GreenTengu quoted Hussar in post Does Your Fantasy Race Really Matter In Game? (The Gnome Problem)
    There is far too much truthiness in this post. :D But, the point about the Star Wars Cantina is well made. And it's funny because if you actually play Star Wars, no one plays aliens that are just humans with funny ears. No one plays a Wookie and doesn't play up that fact. Or a whatever race. Star Trek as well. You don't see Vulcan characters that are just identical to the humans. People play Vulcans because they want to play VULCANS, not just a really smart human. As soon as the D&D books come out though, all that goes out the window and far, far too many players are playing whatever race happens to fit their power gaming needs. Like others above, I'd far rather just use Variant Humans than the constant nails on the chalkboard of having yet another human that can see in the dark with pointy ears. :( I can hardly disagree more about the point regarding Star Wars. Pretty much any Twi'lek or Rodian or Zabrak or Chiss or Cathar or Tagrata character, outside of a minor note here or ther...

Monday, 15th July, 2019

  • 07:11 AM - Maxperson quoted Hussar in post The Evolution of Tieflings in D&D: Interviews with Zeb Cook and Colin McComb
    This isn't about my dislike for Planescape. This is about my dislike of Planescape grognards constandly bitching and whining about how WotC just doesn't get tieflings. Hrm, tieflings have gone from a tiny niche race that only a small handful of tables ever actually saw to one of the most popular races in the game. Yeah, I guess WotC has no idea what they are doing and everyone else is just completely out of touch. They became popular because they were included in the FR book, which gave them a lot more exposure, and then in 4e as a main race. They did not become popular because of the relatively minor changes made to them. EVERY SINGLE TIME any conversation about Tieflings comes up, we have to listen to the same tired old song and dance. You don't like 5e tielflings. Fantastic. No problems. There's NOTHING forcing you to play them. Not a single damn thing. Instead we have to listen to warmed over edition war garbage, yet again, for the TEN THOUSANTH time, because, well, we have t...
  • 04:37 AM - Imaro quoted Hussar in post The Evolution of Tieflings in D&D: Interviews with Zeb Cook and Colin McComb
    Huh. I guess I imagined this: 107531 WHich isn't trying to tell anyone that they're doing things wrong. No, not at all. Nope its art expressing a dislike for something or is that not allowed now?? EIGHT freaking years we've had to listen to a group of edition warriors bitch and whine about how they don't like the new Tieflings. Funny thing is, Tieflings are now, apparently, one of the most popular races after the big three (human, elf, dwarf). In fact, the only race more popular is ANOTHER 4e race - dragonborn. So dont read it. DISCUSSION forum means you dont get to dictate only one view can be expressed. This isn't about my dislike for Planescape. This is about my dislike of Planescape grognards constandly bitching and whining about how WotC just doesn't get tieflings. Hrm, tieflings have gone from a tiny niche race that only a small handful of tables ever actually saw to one of the most popular races in the game. Yeah, I guess WotC has no idea what they are doing ...
  • 02:08 AM - Azzy quoted Hussar in post The Evolution of Tieflings in D&D: Interviews with Zeb Cook and Colin McComb
    Gimme a break. No one is telling you to conform. You are being asked to not fling poo every single time the issue comes up. Heís got a point. There is NOTHING stopping you from having 2e style tieflings in your game. Zero. Zip. Nada. So why are you trying to force everyone else to adhere to your tastes? I don't see anyone forcing anyone to adhere to 2e-style tieflings. I see people that don't like the new versionóthen here you are trying to shout us down for not liking youre preference and PointsofInspiration saying that that don't to adhere to his tastes are categorically wrong.
  • 01:53 AM - Imaro quoted Hussar in post The Evolution of Tieflings in D&D: Interviews with Zeb Cook and Colin McComb
    Gimme a break. No one is telling you to conform. You are being asked to not fling poo every single time the issue comes up. Heís got a point. There is NOTHING stopping you from having 2e style tieflings in your game. Zero. Zip. Nada. So why are you trying to force everyone else to adhere to your tastes? How about you give us a break... we know you have a personal hate on for all things Planescape... But were is anyone trying to force anything... it's a thread about tieflings and opinions on which ones various posters liked were given. This tangent/ argument only started because someone tried to use fan art as a basis of proof/ to insinuate that the majority (Instead of just themselves) preferred the 4e/5e phb tieflings.

Saturday, 13th July, 2019

  • 10:30 PM - Psyzhran2357 quoted Hussar in post The Evolution of Tieflings in D&D: Interviews with Zeb Cook and Colin McComb
    Well, considering in the pic you posted, the horns are almost as long as his head, I'd say they are pretty big. And the color thing, well, whatever to be honest. The tiefling in the PHB isn't that far from a dark blue. Let's not forget, THIS was a 2e Tiefling: https://vignette.wikia.nocookie.net/baldursgategame/images/4/4f/Haer%27Dalis_NHAER_Portrait_BG2.png/revision/latest?cb=20180925155705 Just as much as any Di Terlizzi art. I thought the above image was just an elf picture they reused because they didn't have any Tiefling assets loaded into the game for some reason?
  • 06:30 PM - gyor quoted Hussar in post The Evolution of Tieflings in D&D: Interviews with Zeb Cook and Colin McComb
    Well, considering in the pic you posted, the horns are almost as long as his head, I'd say they are pretty big. And the color thing, well, whatever to be honest. The tiefling in the PHB isn't that far from a dark blue. Let's not forget, THIS was a 2e Tiefling: https://vignette.wikia.nocookie.net/baldursgategame/images/4/4f/Haer%27Dalis_NHAER_Portrait_BG2.png/revision/latest?cb=20180925155705 Just as much as any Di Terlizzi art. He seriously, looks more like an elf then a Tiefling.

Friday, 12th July, 2019

  • 03:57 AM - Henry quoted Hussar in post 40 Million People Have Played D&D [UPDATED!]
    Which is different from my experience. We rotated DMing duties right from the get go. The notion of a single DM group never actually occurred to us until I got into 2e era. I wish more players would actually step up into the DMing role. Makes for MUCH better players. I agree - Iím also of the opinion that, just as every DM owes it to themselves to be a player at some point, each player should try DMing at least once or twice, because it does give greater appreciation for both sides of the table in my experience.
  • 01:26 AM - Imaro quoted Hussar in post The Evolution of Tieflings in D&D: Interviews with Zeb Cook and Colin McComb
    Thatís your definition of small? Ok. I can see why you think the way you do. Even with that... absence of tail, blue skin... EDIT: Also what do you mean you can see why I think the way I do... EDIT 2: These, IMO are large horns... https://www.google.com/url?sa=i&source=images&cd=&ved=2ahUKEwjc9I2_k67jAhVHaM0KHVFwCLQQjRx6BAgBEAU&url=https%3A%2F%2Fdnd4.fandom.com%2Fwiki%2FTiefling&psig=AOvVaw1KtL0MjkN3FGxmRyJ0BGu_&ust=1562978691612525https://encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcT6teXYrFwdpBA7fKsEo8iTJsHsnSwYip-iY9q0GELfxpHtPsub


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