View Profile: MarkB - D&D, Pathfinder, and RPGs at Morrus' Unofficial Tabletop RPG News
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Wednesday, 23rd May, 2018, 10:26 PM
    One of the major parts is that you can only collect the personal information you require in order to provide your service. Even with user opt-in, if you were to collect, for instance, home address data for individuals to whom you had no need to communicate or provide goods and services via mail, you could be in breach of the regulations. So, a user's IP address might be necessary in order to...
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    Wednesday, 23rd May, 2018, 07:36 PM
    It is a bit of a minefield at the moment, mostly because (a) it allows people to be very specific about how they want their data used, and (b) it requires companies to be pretty responsive to any requests. It's quite possible that an existing, off-the-shelf forum system would struggle to cope with the new regulations, whether in terms of being flexible enough to support a whole range of privacy...
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Tuesday, 22nd May, 2018, 10:10 PM
    They're smug because of how awesome they are.
    94 replies | 2644 view(s)
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    Tuesday, 22nd May, 2018, 09:11 PM
    Nah, it's just "walk into trap, breeze through the saving throws thanks to Aura of Awesome, fix up the few minor scrapes with some mutual laying-on-hands, wonder what all the fuss was about." Paladins see no need to disarm their opponent before combat, whether living or mechanical.
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Tuesday, 22nd May, 2018, 08:42 AM
    Subcontractors.
    127 replies | 4636 view(s)
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Monday, 21st May, 2018, 09:17 PM
    For some DMs it's not about the setting, or even the storyline. Just as you suggest players creating stories within the interstital spaces of the campaign lore, some DMs - some of them good ones - like to spin their narrative out of the backgrounds and interactions of the characters. And they will be fully invested in those narratives, no less so for the fact that they came up with most of them...
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    Monday, 21st May, 2018, 08:31 PM
    Like I said, for me it's a scale, not separate neat little categories. I've played sessions that felt more like very narrative-focused group entertainment get-togethers, and others that felt like a bunch of friends partying, and also playing a game as part of that experience. And they didn't necessarily have to be sessions where we'd started out aiming for one or the other - sometimes, they just...
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    Monday, 21st May, 2018, 08:04 PM
    It's somewhere on a continuum between those concepts. Some of the games I've played have been very close to one end, others have been very close to the other. Not even with different groups, or different campaigns, in all cases. Sometimes it's just a matter of the mood and tone on that particular night.
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Monday, 21st May, 2018, 07:53 PM
    I suspect its origins are literary, stemming from the concepts of point-of-view in written works - First Person ("I"), Second Person ("You") and Third Person ("Him/Her/Them"). Thus, a contract between a seller and a customer is written from the seller as the First Person ("I set out these terms") to the customer as the Second Person ("You agree to the following"), and may refer to others as...
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Monday, 21st May, 2018, 07:09 PM
    While I take lowkey13's point that the campaign is better if the DM is invested in it, the reverse is also very much true - the campaign is better if the players are invested in it. If the DM gets an idea in his head for a campaign setting that really resonates with him, but the players either aren't interested or just don't really grok the concept that he's going for, that's just going to be...
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Thursday, 17th May, 2018, 07:49 PM
    Check through each of the Conditions in the appendix at the back of the PHB - most of them impose some form of Advantage / Disadvantage. Heavy obscurement such as magical darkness or fog is a bit of a 'trap' effect, in that it grants advantage to attack others because they can't see you, and disadvantage because you can't see them - thus cancelling out not only its own effects but also every...
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Wednesday, 16th May, 2018, 11:08 PM
    On Gamora's world they knew exactly who had attacked them and why - and they also knew they didn't stand a chance against him. So after the horrors he'd inflicted, they could eventually rebuild. But right now in this universe, on every planet that hadn't heard about Thanos and his grand schemes, it seems like half the population's been turned to ashes through some unknown means. Maybe some of...
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Wednesday, 16th May, 2018, 10:37 PM
    First, Eberron was not a third-party product. Second, it's not unreasonable to say that Critical Role's Tal'Dorei at least has the potential to be 5e's Eberron. The setting has huge popularity and brand recognition, and from what I've heard the initial sales have been phenomenal.
    127 replies | 4636 view(s)
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Thursday, 10th May, 2018, 10:45 PM
    Isn't that pretty much any gaming night?
    29 replies | 864 view(s)
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Monday, 7th May, 2018, 07:31 PM
    For some really weird continuity effects, you could make it 1d6-2. :)
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Monday, 7th May, 2018, 06:43 PM
    I'm enjoying it a lot so far. I'm still playing through God of War, and mostly bought Battletech just as something I could play occasionally while having a podcast running in the background - but it's been addictive enough that I've been playing it exclusively for the last week.
    16 replies | 441 view(s)
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Monday, 7th May, 2018, 01:36 AM
    "Avengers - Some Assembly Required" According to Odin in Thor: Ragnarok, Mjolnir was never a source of power for Thor - it merely channeled his innate powers.
    128 replies | 3552 view(s)
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Sunday, 6th May, 2018, 06:14 PM
    I'd probably organise more of the talents into trees, just so that players couldn't cherry-pick the really good standalone ones within the first few levels. Some of them could definitely be simplified. Then, to compensate for unlinking skills and hitpoints from classes, give the players a benefit once every few levels which they can choose to take as either a skill, a weapon/armour...
    11 replies | 539 view(s)
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Sunday, 6th May, 2018, 02:16 AM
    I'd quite like to update Star Wars Saga Edition using 5e sensibilities. Bounded Accuracy would fix the issue with different progressions for skills and attacks / defenses, which threw off the balance between Force powers and regular attacks. And I always really liked the very flexible multiclassing system - it felt like it was only 2-3 short steps removed from being effectively a classless...
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Saturday, 5th May, 2018, 02:53 AM
    MarkB replied to 5E Spin offs?
    I'm currently having fun running a 5e cyberpunk campaign using code::2050 by Legendary Pants, which has just launched a Kickstarter. They've made it nice and accessible by making all the extra elements fit on top of the standard 5e rules, rather than changing any of the existing game mechanics.
    8 replies | 430 view(s)
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Monday, 30th April, 2018, 07:27 PM
    I felt like the "Gamora kills fake Thanos" scene did reasonably well in setting it up. With the Reality stone to command, he could have played out any number of scenarios to capture her, or simply blown through all her allies with sheer strength. Instead, he set up a scenario that allowed her to kill him, because he genuinely needed to know whether she still cared about him. Which would only have...
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Sunday, 29th April, 2018, 08:34 PM
    Without having followed the link, is the Giff correction about whether they're pronounced with a hard G or a soft G?
    18 replies | 1020 view(s)
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Sunday, 29th April, 2018, 02:21 AM
    I felt like someone could have saved the universe a lot of pain by just asking Thanos "If you've got the power to reshape the universe, why not just double the available resources instead of halving the population? Mathematically it works out the same, only nobody dies."
    128 replies | 3552 view(s)
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Saturday, 28th April, 2018, 12:22 PM
    Bonus actions is something new players have taken awhile to get to grips with - specifically, the idea that having a bonus action is universal, but the ways in which you can use it are specialised, and will depend upon your particular character build. Object interactions I've just flat-out never bothered to explain to anyone - I just let players interact with things naturally on their turn,...
    54 replies | 2166 view(s)
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Friday, 27th April, 2018, 07:29 PM
    Bear in mind that this can also have disadvantages. If there are multiple orcs in a crowd, all moving and all carrying strawberries, the spell is going to be constantly switching targets and appearing to give you false or misleading readings.
    11 replies | 269 view(s)
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Wednesday, 25th April, 2018, 11:11 PM
    How about: You need to gather power at a divine site in order to unlock a new level of spells. Until you do so, you still have access to the new level's spell slots, but can only utilise them by upcasting lower-level spells. If you spend more than a certain period without replenishing at a shrine, you don't lose all spellcasting ability - but you do lose access to subclass features, such as...
    15 replies | 315 view(s)
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  • MarkB's Avatar
    Wednesday, 25th April, 2018, 07:49 PM
    An intricately-drawn treasure map, etched across all of the coins combined. Once the party earn enough money, they'll be able to assemble it into a clue that will lead them to something even more valuable.
    6 replies | 311 view(s)
    2 XP
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Monday, 26th February, 2018

  • 09:06 PM - lowkey13 mentioned MarkB in post Musings on the "Lawful Jerk" Paladin
    ...r less entirely subjective. Mmmmm..... I give you all the points for "Paladin issues marinated[.]" It's like the worst steak ever. "Why does our kobold fillet taste so bad? It has to be the Paladin marinade!" Anyway, a quick point- OD&D- Paladin lost status by chaotic act; could not regain status. EVER, MAN! See Greyhawk supplement. 1e- If they perform a chaotic act, must confess and do penance. If evil act, cannot regain status. EVER. 2e- Same as 1e. Although it helpfully creates a rule because 1e had "knowingly commit" evil act, so 2e includes the whole, "You got charmed, yo, and now you have to atone!" So ... part of the problem, as it is with most things, is that weird translation from OD&D to 1e. "Chaotic" in OD&D meant, um, evil. Moorcockian. But by dragging out the whole different penalties in 1e/2e, it confused a lot of people, and (IME), most people just conflated the rules and made it, "If Evil, must atone." But contra what you are writing, and what MarkB is positing, these weren't the parts of the code that got people in trouble. There might have been some bad DMs out there, but as a general rule, the DM wasn't looking to strip you of your powers. Instead, and again IME, it was the rules about who the Paladin could party with ... um, who could be in the Paladin's party, that led to the whole "Jerky McJerkface telling the party what to do" reputation. That, and the fact that we all know Paladins suck and need to be excised from the game.

Saturday, 24th February, 2018

  • 01:24 AM - shidaku mentioned MarkB in post Musings on the "Lawful Jerk" Paladin
    ...o know it's a game, right? Not reality? Are you saying that it's wrong to say that, for example, Asmodeus is irrevocably evil? I think it is reasonable to say Asmodeus is currently incredibly evil. That's not to say there's not like, an epic quest line and a DC 9000 you could attempt in order to redeem him. That's also not to say that just because he is evil, doesn't mean he isn't sometimes on the right side of things. It's important to keep in mind that in Asmodeus' case (and by extension all Devils) they are by nature LAWFUL Evil and understand such concepts of honor, loyalty, comradeship, and the value of a well-written contract. While their ideas of these things may be twisted and their endgame may be their own advancement, devils may do good things because at some future point it will be to their gain. LE, unlike LG, does not have a problem with doing things outside of their alignment, provided it serves their interests in some manner. I also have to generally agree with MarkB on this, I've seen some of the posts by people who favor "A jolly good game of 'Kill the Orc'." and frankly it's a little disturbing. I think games set a dangerous precedent when they start running around saying X race is intrinsically evil. It's not terribly difficult to make a game that always sets up Orcs as the "bad guys" but at the same time never says "they're evil". It doesn't even need to be a "shades of grey" campaign to do this.

Wednesday, 14th February, 2018

  • 09:31 AM - Hussar mentioned MarkB in post Discovery Trailer
    I came to that conclusion maybe ten pages ago. These peeps need this show to be the best, actual show be damned! Sent from my C6603 using EN World mobile app Who says it needs to be best? I like it. I am not seeing the issues that you are pointing to, or, rather, the issues that are being pointed to are very much not issues for me. IOW, MarkB hits it square on the head. Like I said earlier, I get that people don't like the show. And that's groovy. There's stuff I haven't liked too. Fair enough. The difference is, I'm not jumping through hoop after hoop in order to justify my feelings. I'm not misinterpreting tropes in order to "prove" how bad Disco is. I'm not playing silly buggers cherry picking games to "prove" that they don't care about canon. I'm not trying to prove anything. I like the show. That's the end of that conversation.

Sunday, 4th February, 2018

  • 02:34 PM - pemerton mentioned MarkB in post What is *worldbuilding* for?
    ...yle mystery scenario, getting the GM to read you bits of his/her notes is the whole point of play: get the clue from here, find the tome there, find the cultists' ritual headquaters, etc. This is all about learning what is in the GM's notes. It's not (or need not be) the GM reading a story: the sequence may not correspond to any particular pre-planned sequence, and there may not be any particular structure of rising action, complication, climax, etc. You also continually use examples of bad GMing to make your point that option 1 is a bad thing.Well, I make do with the examples I have. I don't believe that you've posted any actual play examples. (If you have, and I've missed them, I apologise - can you point me back to them?) The example of the map came (I think) from Lanefan - at least, it has been established in lengthy back-and-forth with him. The example of the plot on the Duke came from Lanefan. The example of the attempt to find bribeable officials came from MarkB. Are you saying that these are all examples of bad GMing? So what does good GMing look like, in this context? What is a good use of secretly-established fictional positioning being used by a GM to establish that a player's action declaration fails, without regard to the action resolution mechanics? A good GM will not send his players on a wild goose chase through the mansion for a map macguffin.So what would the pre-authorship be used for? Even the fiction that I've "pre-authored" can be impacted (or changed entirely if the situation calls for it) at any time by the players' actions - they are the heroes after all.Can you give an example of what you mean? For instance - and I am going to give an example I am familiar with, as I don't have much to go on from your game - I have a PC in my 4e game whose goal is to reconstruct the Rod of Seven Parts. He got the first part at the start of 2nd level. The campaign is now 30th level and he and his friends are in a fight that will de...

Friday, 2nd February, 2018

  • 12:35 PM - pemerton mentioned MarkB in post What is *worldbuilding* for?
    ...shing a story of an orc. If the person asserts (as I think Emerikol does) that "As a player I only want to add those embellishments that correspond to causal powers exercised by my PC in the gameworld, so I will embellish deaths caused by my PC, but not maps discovered by my PC" that's his/her prerogative. It's a type of aesthetic preference. (As well as Emerikol, Lanefan has advocated it strongly in this thread.) My claims about it are two. (1) It is not more "realistic", or less "Schroedinger-y" than embellishing other parts of the fiction. (2) It means that a reasonable amount of your play experience will involve the GM telling you stuff that s/he made up (either in advance in his/her notes, or stuff that s/he makes up as needed but that is to be treated the same by the game participants as if it were part of his/her pre-authored notes). The reason for (2) I take to be obvious given the extensive discussion of it in this thread, and the example provided by Lanefan, MarkB and others. And the more the game involves "exploration" - that is, the players declaring actions which have, as an outcome, their PCs learning about the gameworld (eg opening doors, finding bribeable officials, searching for maps, etc) rather than their PCs changing the gameworld (eg by killing orcs or befriending strangers) - then the more that (2) will obtain. Furthermore, given that a PC's success in changing the gameworld often depends (in the imaginary causal processes) upon unknown but relevant factors (eg the armour of the orc; the temperament of the stranger) then even changing the gameworld through action declarations can become hostage to a resolution process that does not permit the player to embellish other elements of the shared fiction. For instance, if we go from player action declaration through resolution mechanics through embellishment that reflects outcome, then it is possible to have combat systems like D&D (AC, roll to hit, determine outcome from that) and h...

Thursday, 1st February, 2018

  • 12:38 AM - pemerton mentioned MarkB in post What is *worldbuilding* for?
    ...GM, that's not counterindicative at all of having trust issues about the GM being unfair.The last sentence is not something I intend to reply to. I'm not interested in analysing my own conjectured self-doubts in this thread. As I've said, a more prosaic explanation for my preferences is available - my pleasure in RPGing does not come from telling my friends stuff that I wrote in response to them making moves for their PCs that oblige me to engage in such tellings. As for the first bit, you are correct that I "seem to couch [my] arguments from a position where the DM is uses secret knowledge and fiat in ways that benefit the DM's ideas over the players". The reason it seems like that is because it is like that. (I didn't clarify that in my first reply because I assumed it was obvious.) And the reason I couch my arguments (I would prefer to say "analysis", but that's orthogonal) from that position is because that position is correct. Which is what I said was evident in the post from MarkB: inherent in the use of secret backstory as a factor in adjudication is that the GM's ideas are given priority in establishing the content of the shared fiction. I'll respond to the following bit too, though, if you like, though I think it's repetition: a GM may be fair or unfair in saying (on the basis not of action resolution, but of secretly established fictional content) that the map is not in the study where the players have declared that the PCs are searching the study for it. If every other bit of information points to the map being in the study, it's probably unfair. If the PCs have a potion of map detecing with a range that will encompass the whole house (kitchen as well as study) but are not using it, then what the GM is doing is probably fair. I don't care whether it's fair or not. The reason I don't like it is because I find it uninteresting. When I RPG, I don't want to engage in an activity in which my friends are spending most of their time trying to establish - by ...

Monday, 29th January, 2018

  • 02:15 AM - pemerton mentioned MarkB in post What is *worldbuilding* for?
    ...layer agency in a GM setting-driven game, as it was completely orthogonal from the GM's setting. (Eg we had fragments of a prophecy, and we spent a lot of time debating them, imagining how we could read various PCs into various roles outlined in the prophecy, etc. I assume that the GM had some conception, in his mind, of what the prophecy meant and how the events of play related to it, but they were absolutely irrelevant to what we players were talking about. We could have done our stuff just as easily if the GM had simply handed us three random prophecies downloaded from a Google search.) Clearly, you don't trust that players have any form of agency in any game that has substantive GM backstory and adjudication. You're denying that they do all over the place here and in your response to Lanefan. And you don't really seem to trust us when we say that player do have agency in the games we're running in which we do make use of substantial backstory and adjudication. Your response to MarkB here is fairly dripping with it. "you think it is" makes it very clear that you don't believe him or think it's true. It's like you're calling him out but acknowledge he's not technically lying because he seems to believe it's true.We're doing analysis here. Trying to dig down into the processes of play is not "calling someone out". I don't think MarkB is lying. I do think that the suggestion that I don't trust GMs is (i) false, and (ii) irrelevant - as if the only reason someone would play DungeonWorld rather than 2nd ed AD&D is because they don't trust GMs! But anyway, on to the issue of agency: Here is one of my assertions - if the GM is entitled, at any point in the process of resolution to (i) secretly author backstory, or (ii) secrety rewrite backstory, and (iii) to use that secret backstory as if it was part of the fictional positioning so as to (iv) automatically declare an action declaration unsuccessful ("No, the map's not in the study") - then I assert that every acti...

Saturday, 20th January, 2018

  • 05:00 AM - pemerton mentioned MarkB in post What is *worldbuilding* for?
    In many ways, they do the same thing, itís just the puzzle is a little different, less constrictive, and possibly more complex. Instead of a relatively simple puzzle of doping out the best way to maximize treasure within a single dungeon, they might be working on visiting all of the adventuring sites in the region, foiling the impending invasion of the orcsish legion, stopping the predation of a wicked dragon, or just visiting interesting places.The last of these doesn't sound like a puzzle at all. As for the others, as I posted not far upthread (in response to Sadras and MarkB), I'm curious about how the puzzle-solving works, when there are so many (imaginary) elements in play which can introduce parameters to the puzzle to which the players have no access (in practical terms). I donít see those as unsolvable, but then I donít really buy into describing RPG gaming, even limited to dungeon crawls, as puzzles to solve. Unless the puzzle is figuring out how to have fun pretending to be a halfling Paladin or half-orc summoner.Right. As the OP said, I think puzzle-solving play is not so common in contemporary RPGing. Given that it's not, then, what is worldbuilding for?

Thursday, 18th January, 2018

  • 11:39 PM - Lanefan mentioned MarkB in post What is *worldbuilding* for?
    ...e notes on any of it. Having it pre-designed even if just in broad strokes makes the describing so much easier. Particularly at the start of the campaign when the players in theory know much less about the game world than their PCs do (canon lawyers for pre-fab settings notwithstanding) the DM has a lot of describing to do and as a side effect of that description is going to drop the PCs into a particular setting be it a steamy jungle, a city based on ancient Athens, a snowy Viking camp, or a pleasant sunny farm village. You'd probably call this railroading, but how else can it work? Of course, that's just the start; if the PCs in the Viking camp immediately decide to go someplace warmer then the DM has to react to that. (one hopes she has a broad-strokes regional or continental map showing areas beyond a short radius around the camp!) Are you able to say more about how you see the GM's work on the setting in advance of play feeding through to give the players that sense? MarkB might see it differently, but for my part it's much easier to figure out a character's motivations, beliefs, goals, etc. when there's a culture (or cultures) and common history to fit into. If, say, the setting history shows that our starting town was devastated by a war ten years ago and since rebuilt, that's going to influence my character and what she thinks; and probably influence other characters as well. But if the starting history shows no such war it's not our place as players to just add it in. We have no right to, as world design is not in our purview. And if there's no pre-designed history then what's the point? What happened before our PCs became PCs? What major events shaped their lives? (it should be obvious but I'd better mention: the DM sets the event but the player chooses what influence it had on her character, if any). Lanefan

Thursday, 28th December, 2017

  • 04:08 AM - ArchfiendBobbie mentioned MarkB in post Han Solo movie incoming....
    MarkB I thought Force Awakens: Incredible Cross Sections was canon due to being written and published after Disney acquired Star Wars?
  • 03:31 AM - ArchfiendBobbie mentioned MarkB in post Han Solo movie incoming....
    MarkB Maybe. But if so, that's a retcon of the Falcon's history. It was originally a freight pusher for orbit; that's why it had the cockpit to the side instead of the YT-standard central cockpit.

Saturday, 23rd December, 2017

  • 02:05 AM - Hussar mentioned MarkB in post Tension, Threats And Progression In RPGs
    Yeah, I gotta go with MarkB on this one. What's the point of trying to draw boxes around whether something is a "game" or not. Like any genre discussion, it's ultimately a deep, deep dive down a dark rabbit hole. And, I would also point out that I don't think anyone has advocated completely taking death off the table either. Just making it a bit more rare.

Friday, 8th December, 2017

  • 03:27 PM - redrick mentioned MarkB in post Losing HP as you level up
    I usually forget that one even can roll for hit points on leveling up. I doubt it's something the designers give much thought to as well. Agree with MarkB, incentivizing rolling for hp would be counterproductive ó average hp should be the preferred option. Easier to keep track of, doesn't lead to pointless power differential between characters, takes nothing away from the RP. If rolling for hp, on average, gave you better results, we'd have players groaning and complaining when I said, "and we'll all just take average hp on level up." With the average being statistically better, nobody even notices that rolling for it is gone after a level or two. (If they ever noticed at all.) Roll dice for PC actions. Live with the consequences. But why randomize the squishiness of a character?

Sunday, 17th April, 2016

  • 11:54 PM - Quickleaf mentioned MarkB in post Hard sci-fi question: rotational artificial gravity space station
    ...the questions I'm trying to determine. How high up do you have to climb a building for there to be noticeable change in gravity. I think it would affect how high-rise type buildings were constructed, since the shearing forces (might be using the wrong term) between regular G and lower-G would require stronger building materials. Plus it might suggest activities happening at the upper levels of high-rise buildings would be substantially different...for example moving construction activities to the lower-G zones for increased efficiency. RangerWickett Really helpful on how to visualize entering at the zero-G "fixed" axis and seeing the entire station spin around you. I suspected some kind of shuttle or elevator would be necessary, but hadn't conceived of exactly why... I plugged a 500 m radius in and got a Tangential Velocity (or "rim speed") of 156 mph, which would be "splat your dead" for anyone moving or falling from the zero-G axis to the ground...in scientific terms :) MarkB That's another one of my questions. I mean, nothing we throw on Earth actually travels straight, technically. But in the rotational artificial G environment I'm wondering if it would be more obvious...or would it basically be a case of "throwing a baseball while in a moving car"? In other words, if everything/everyone is rotating at the same rate in relation to each other, there doesn't appear to be any change from Earth-standard gravity (assuming 1 g centripetal acceleration). But what happens if I punt a football down a field or fire a railgun at the elevator/shuttle tube along the central axis when the station is rotating at 1.3 rpms and the rim is spinning at 156 mph?

Friday, 30th October, 2015

  • 09:13 PM - El Mahdi mentioned MarkB in post Warlord Name Poll
    ...epithet; @erf_beto ; @Eric V ; @eryndel ; @Evenglare ; @ExploderWizard ; @EzekielRaiden; @Fedge123 ; @fendak ; @FireLance ; @Fishing_Minigame ; @Flamestrike ; @FLexor the Mighty! ; @Forged Fury ; @Fragsie ; @Fralex ; @FreeTheSlaves ; @froth ; @Gadget; @Galendril ; @GameOgre ; @Garthanos ; @Ghost Matter ; @Giltonio_Santos ; @Gimul; @GMforPowergamers ; @Gnashtooth ; @Green1 ; @GreenKarl ; @Greg K ; @GreyLord; @Grimmjow ; @Grydan ; @GX.Sigma ; @Halivar ; @HEEGZ ; @Hemlock ; @Henry ; @Herobizkit; @Hussar; @IchneumonWasp ; @I'm A Banana ; @Imaro ; @Iosue ; @Irennan ; @JackOfAllTirades; @jacktannery ; @jadrax ; @Jaelommiss ; @JamesTheLion ; @JamesonCourage ; @JasonZZ; @jayoungr ; @JediGamemaster ; @JeffB ; @Jester Canuck ; @jgsugden ; @jodyjohnson; @Joe Liker ; @JohnLynch ; @Johnny3D3D ; @KarinsDad ; @kerbarian ; @kerleth ; @Kinak; @KingsRule77 ; @Kirfalas ; @Kobold Stew ; @koga305 ; @Lanefan ; @Lanliss ; @Leatherhead; @Libramarian ; @Li Shenron ; @LuisCarlos17f ; @lowkey13 ; @Manbearcat ; @MarkB; @MechaPilot ; @Mecheon ; @mellored ; @Mephista ; @Mercule ; @MG.0 ; @MichaelSomething; @Miladoon ; @Minigiant ; @Mishihari Lord ; @Mistwell ; @MoogleEmpMog ; @Mon @MonkeezOnFire ; @MoonSong(Kaiilurker) ; @MostlyDm ; @Mouseferatu ; @MoutonRustique; @Nemesis Destiny ; @neobolts ; @Neonchameleon ; @Nifft ; @nightspaladin ; @nomotog; @n00bdragon ; @Obryn ; @Ohillion ; @oknazevad ; @Olgar Shiverstone ; @Orlax ; @Otterscrubber ; @Pandamonium87 ; @Paraxis ; @PaulO. ; @Pauln6 ; @Pauper ; @payn; @pemerton ; @peterka99 ;@ Pickles III ; @Pickles JG ; @pkt77242 ; @pming ; @pogre; @PopeYodaI ; @Prickly ; @procproc ; @Psikerlord ; @Psikerlord# ; @(Psi)SeveredHead; @Quickleaf ; @Raith5 ; @raleel ; @Ralif Redhammer ; @Raloc ; @Ranes ; @RangerWickett; @Ratskinner ; @redrick ; @Rejuvenator ; @Remathilis ; @Ristamar ; @RolenArcher; @Roland55 ; @RPG_Tweaker ; @Rune ; @Rygar ; @Sacrosanct ; @Saelorn ; @Saeviomagy; @sailor-Moon ; @SailorNash ; @Saplatt ; @Satyrn ; @Shades of Eternity ; @shadowmane; @shead...

Wednesday, 15th July, 2015


Saturday, 29th November, 2014

  • 09:03 PM - Stormonu mentioned MarkB in post Star Wars The Force Awakens Teaser Trailer is now live!
    R2 and 3PO are both still in it. They haven't been replaced. That's good to know. MarkB - On the Death Star, they're low in the trench, but not as ridiculously low over the lake. Yeah, you can fly real-life jets ridiculously low, but the over-the-topness bothers me.

Sunday, 9th November, 2014

  • 08:21 AM - Jester David mentioned MarkB in post Doctor Who s8e12: Death in Heaven [spoilers]
    My wife says Danny shot her to save the Doctor getting his hands dirty. I'll have to rewatch. Like MarkB I assumed it was the Cyberman assumed to be the Brigadier keeping the Doctor's hands clean. But the FX did look more like a teleport. They could have just reused the SFX (those are pricey) or deliberately used that one to allow room to bring back the Master. But, while neat, the Brigadier semi-returning felt deux ex machnica. (Heh. A deus ex machina cyberman. Heh.) It was kinda foreshadowed and it makes total sense but it's so abrupt. Still, any excuse to namedrop Lethbridge-Stewart is fine by me. I liked the mutual lying at the end. Such a different way for companions departing. Despite being extra long it felt like there were some bits missing. I felt there was a scene missing between the graveyard and Clara's room where the Doctor explains that someone could come back. Likely cut for time/pacing but awkward from a story purpose. But I liked Danny sacrificing his life to return the boy he killed. That was such a nice bit of his overall character arc. Perhaps that's a...

Saturday, 4th October, 2014

  • 01:22 AM - JEB mentioned MarkB in post Replacing Use Magic Device
    Thanks for the replies, all! I like where this is going, a "jury-rigging" or "MacGyver" ability. MarkB, that's an excellent start, though it'll need to be streamlined and modified to be more 5E-like. (For starters, I'd probably drop the skill check and just require a certain length of time.) I'll try and take a stab at it myself later this weekend (not happening right now), but if anyone else wants to develop this further... As a sidenote, in this situation, I could see Use Magic Device sticking around as a feat. Mainly because feats are supposed to represent an unusual or exceptional talent (as opposed to UMD being something any Thief can do).

Sunday, 13th July, 2014

  • 06:59 PM - gyor mentioned MarkB in post Thaumaturgy Cantrip.
    Its a Cleric/Tiefling spell, not a Wizard spell, although if the wizard is a Tiefling, Multiclass Cleric, or has a feat that allows him to take a Cleric cantrip he can use it. MarkB good list.


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Wednesday, 23rd May, 2018

  • 08:57 PM - dragoner quoted MarkB in post Cubicle 7 forums to close due to EU data law
    ... to allow, for instance, every record of a specific individual to be removed without screwing up the database. On my forum I can remove every post and attachment by a user in a few clicks, it's just a cosmetically polished phpBB. From reading the FAQ for the GDPR, it seems fairly vague in that logging user name and IP address is illegal? Or could be looked at as so, that is some troublingly vague language there.

Tuesday, 22nd May, 2018

  • 09:35 PM - lowkey13 quoted MarkB in post Players should play, and not be heard: Campaign Edition
    Nah, it's just "walk into trap, breeze through the saving throws thanks to Aura of Awesome, fix up the few minor scrapes with some mutual laying-on-hands, wonder what all the fuss was about." Paladins see no need to disarm their opponent before combat, whether living or mechanical. You keep using that word, "awesome." I do not think you are aware that the proper word is "smug." Despite the perfidy of paladins, the two words are not synonyms.
  • 09:19 PM - Riley37 quoted MarkB in post Players should play, and not be heard: Campaign Edition
    Nah, it's just "walk into trap, breeze through the saving throws thanks to Aura of Awesome, fix up the few minor scrapes with some mutual laying-on-hands, wonder what all the fuss was about." Rocks fall. Everyone dies. Everyone, that is, except the Paladins, because Aura of Awesome, and a few rogues who Evaded, a few Druids who were in Wildshape, a few Barbarians who happened to be Raging at the time, Mages with clones, and so forth. We then avenge everyone else, possibly starting by smashing the rocks into sand while the mages and rogues investigate why the rocks fell.

Monday, 21st May, 2018

  • 10:13 PM - robus quoted MarkB in post Players should play, and not be heard: Campaign Edition
    If the DM gets an idea in his head for a campaign setting that really resonates with him, but the players either aren't interested or just don't really grok the concept that he's going for, that's just going to be an exercise in frustration for everyone concerned. And sometimes the answer is going to be "get different players", but sometimes it may simply be to put that special project on the back-burner until you can develop it more, get player buy-in, or find a different crowd to run it with - and meanwhile, keep playing with the friends you have, and running something they can have fun playing. Or write that novel that's obviously begging to be written :D
  • 09:25 PM - lowkey13 quoted MarkB in post Players should play, and not be heard: Campaign Edition
    For some DMs it's not about the setting, or even the storyline. Just as you suggest players creating stories within the interstital spaces of the campaign lore, some DMs - some of them good ones - like to spin their narrative out of the backgrounds and interactions of the characters. And they will be fully invested in those narratives, no less so for the fact that they came up with most of them on-the-fly based upon a few off-hand remarks and character interactions rather than planning them meticulously in advance. And if they know that's what they're ultimately going to be doing for most of the campaign, then they're really not going to be too concerned about nailing down its starting point. Yes, but that isn't different from what I'm saying. To use your example, would a DM who is comfortable with extemporaneous storytelling poll his players and say, "Hey, we could either have this awesome campaign that starts in the city of Yeasand ... or we could just do a railroady adventure path I...
  • 08:12 PM - lowkey13 quoted MarkB in post Players should play, and not be heard: Campaign Edition
    It's somewhere on a continuum between those concepts. Some of the games I've played have been very close to one end, others have been very close to the other. Not even with different groups, or different campaigns, in all cases. Sometimes it's just a matter of the mood and tone on that particular night. Interesting. I would say ... no. If you get together on a regular (semi-regular?) basis with friends to do something social, you are doing that thing. Even if it involves drinking, and talking, and having fun. Because those other things are collateral to the "thing." If you get together with a group of friends to play soccer, or golf, for example, even if you have a good time and you're drinking and talking, that's still not a party. If you get together with a group of friends every week to have dinner and drinks and then watch a movie and discuss it afterwards, that's not a party either. Heck, if you have a weekly bookclub where you get sloshed ... not a party. I would s...

Saturday, 19th May, 2018

  • 02:39 AM - Valetudo quoted MarkB in post EN World's Critical Role Roundup 012: How Caleb Spent His Summer Vacation
    They don't evaporate from YouTube if you stop watching when you reach the break.yeah thats true but youtube has reset the video on more than one occasion on me, and its a pain to find where i left off because i am usually doing other things when i watch the episodes. Its actually quite easy to split the episode into two or even more parts.

Friday, 18th May, 2018


Thursday, 17th May, 2018


Monday, 7th May, 2018

  • 10:01 PM - dragoner quoted MarkB in post Travelling through a wormhole in space
    For some really weird continuity effects, you could make it 1d6-2. :) Like on Futurama: "OK Mister: I'm my own Grandpa!" :D Going back in time would be weird, you would arrive before you left, though the interval is short enough with 1d6-2 that it would be hard to cross your own path. ISTR Thorne or Ellis said that going backwards in time wasn't possible, just for the record; but in a game, there is no limit.
  • 08:29 AM - Jhaelen quoted MarkB in post Avenger's Infinity War *Spoiler* Discussion
    "Avengers - Some Assembly Required"Damn! That's exactly what I was going to post :-D

Sunday, 6th May, 2018

  • 06:28 AM - Ancalagon quoted MarkB in post Star Wars 5e? Who would be interested?
    I'd quite like to update Star Wars Saga Edition using 5e sensibilities. Bounded Accuracy would fix the issue with different progressions for skills and attacks / defenses, which threw off the balance between Force powers and regular attacks. And I always really liked the very flexible multiclassing system - it felt like it was only 2-3 short steps removed from being effectively a classless system, and again, toning down level-based attack / defense progressions would make that even easier. The math started breaking down at high levels, so yes bounded accuracy would help tons. There are very few classes, so backgrounds *could* help (although that would add work). There was a Feat that gave you +5 to your proficiency bonus (which was ridiculous IMO), I think it would work better if it gave expertise.

Sunday, 29th April, 2018

  • 11:42 PM - QuietBrowser quoted MarkB in post Lore You Should Know: Giff Correction, Cormyr, Gnomes and Halflings, silly D&D
    Without having followed the link, is the Giff correction about whether they're pronounced with a hard G or a soft G? Off the top of my head, as I find them extremely hard to listen to, it's actually correcting that the Giff do have their own ship, the Giff Great Bombard.
  • 10:15 AM - Mustrum_Ridcully quoted MarkB in post Avenger's Infinity War *Spoiler* Discussion
    I felt like someone could have saved the universe a lot of pain by just asking Thanos "If you've got the power to reshape the universe, why not just double the available resources instead of halving the population? Mathematically it works out the same, only nobody dies." 1. Can the Infinity Stones actually create something from nothing, or must they convert something into something else? If so, then doubling the resources is fundamentally impossible, since everything in the universe is a form of resource. 2. If they can, or if you find some resources that no one would be able to use (like say, uninhabited star systems far off the path), how do you double the resources? Let's say a planet is overpopulated and lacking in space. So you double the planet's size? But that means double the mass, and suddenly the entire population of the world is suffering under twice their usual weight. You could create a copy of the star system and teleport half of the population to the other star system, b...
  • 05:18 AM - Joker quoted MarkB in post Avenger's Infinity War *Spoiler* Discussion
    I felt like someone could have saved the universe a lot of pain by just asking Thanos "If you've got the power to reshape the universe, why not just double the available resources instead of halving the population? Mathematically it works out the same, only nobody dies." 96940
  • 05:15 AM - MNblockhead quoted MarkB in post What have you found to be the hardest thing for new players to understand about 5e systems?
    I've had a few players struggle with Concentration... Yeah, me as well. Especially after lunch or when they have their phones at the table. :-)

Wednesday, 18th April, 2018

  • 03:17 PM - mrrockitt quoted MarkB in post To MAX HP or not to MAX HP
    For pretty much all my 5e games I've just had players use the averaged values from the PHB. It avoids nasty surprises, without messing with the maths. Wish my DM allowed this! After the level 1 max HP I have rolled a 4, 3 and 2 for my Paladin's next three levels! (Was planning to make him tanky too!)

Monday, 16th April, 2018

  • 07:47 PM - Mistwell quoted MarkB in post To MAX HP or not to MAX HP
    For pretty much all my 5e games I've just had players use the averaged values from the PHB. It avoids nasty surprises, without messing with the maths. But it avoids nasty surprises!

Saturday, 14th April, 2018

  • 02:31 PM - Blue quoted MarkB in post TOON the cartoon RPG, anybody play it?
    I couldn't ever see playing a campaign using the system, but I have played one or two nice chill-out one-shots of it to wind down at the end of a games con. Yeah, we never did "campaigns" - but we did plenty of one-shots with recurring characters.

Friday, 13th April, 2018

  • 02:15 AM - Mouseferatu quoted MarkB in post Check out the Astral Deadnought from Mordenkainen's Tome
    Maybe a deceased Dreadnought becomes a portal into the Donjon, which will remain open for a few days, providing an easy limited-window delving opportunity. It doesn't even have to "become a portal," per se, just continue to function for a few days. I love the idea that you have to climb down the corpse's gullet to get there. :] In fact, even in games where I don't use the "linked donjons demiplane" idea, I might still do that rather than have the creatures/loot just appear near the corpse. You have to spelunk the dead creature to get your treasure and your friends.


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