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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Today, 01:36 PM
    And 4e/WotC did?
    271 replies | 7701 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Today, 01:35 PM
    Just as a point of intellectual history: you do realise, don't you, that The Forge is quite hostile to White Wolf/Storyteller, and largely indifferent to D&D but with a mild sympathy for its classic/OSR version. For someone who gets worked up about what you see as falsehoods by critics of 4e, though, you don't hold back in posting nonsense about The Forge and the "threefold model". From...
    271 replies | 7701 view(s)
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  • Hriston's Avatar
    Today, 12:02 PM
    The turn ending is not the reason for ending your move. It’s quite the opposite. When the player has used as much of their movement as they wish and taken their action, etc., their turn ends. It’s a matter of the player doing that and then voluntarily being done with their turn. The same is true in both play examples. As for why the player decided not to use every foot of movement available,...
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Today, 05:43 AM
    What would be a good name that was consistent with hp not being metagame?
    395 replies | 8074 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Today, 05:24 AM
    So how come, then, a Cure Light Wounds spell can heal most ordinary people (in classic D&D, B/X, AD&D and 3E) from dying or on their last legs, to full health?
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  • Hriston's Avatar
    Today, 03:28 AM
    No, the player is the one deciding to end their turn without using every foot of movement because their PC is already in the position in which they need to be to jump at the beginning of their next turn. The PC doesn’t need a reason because in the fiction they are NOT stopping or slowing down. From the PC’s perspective within the fiction, turns and movement don’t exist. I can see the...
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Yesterday, 01:41 PM
    It's an interesting juxtaposition. Obviously 4e, BW and Cortex+ Heroic (the three systems I work with at the moment) handle this very differently. 4e is closest to your (1), BW to your (2). Cortex+ Heroic is intermediate.
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Yesterday, 11:32 AM
    On this occasion, we are in agreement!
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:57 AM
    But why do you need "patching up", if they're not being impeded in their performance? In my experience, the actual play of hit points and healing is all about making sure no one drops below zero; but how do the PCs know that any given PC is close to dying, if all they can see as some random assortment of minor wounds? To give a concrete example. A PC has 30 hp. Scenario 1: s/he takes four...
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:50 AM
    This is all just assertion. Even the bit about not being able to control when you urinate.
    395 replies | 8074 view(s)
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  • Hriston's Avatar
    Yesterday, 06:28 AM
    Well, we’d better come to an agreement soon. My son, who only plays computer rpg’s and refuses to play D&D, is now pointing to this issue as evidence that D&D is a “broken system”. 😉
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Yesterday, 04:20 AM
    Why not? An AD&D monk can control when s/he goes into a cataleptic trance that feigns death, ro when s/he recovers lost hit points by way of self-healing. A 3E or 5e barbarian can control when s/he gets really angry. Why can't a 5e fighter control when s/he gets his/her second wind? I think there is some tension here. You don't seem to regard "moderately unrealistic" hit points as magic,...
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Yesterday, 03:59 AM
    Or JRRT, who is about as sentimental as Disney. I think one solution to this is one that Gygax at least gestures towards in his DMG: narrate it one way (Disney-esque) for PCs, but otherwise for monsters and NPCs who won't be coming back. You probably won't be surprised that I regard 4e as the most coherent presentation of hp-as-sentimentality-towards-the-heroes: that's why they can be...
    395 replies | 8074 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Yesterday, 03:28 AM
    If someone suggested that it was outrageous for a wizard to shoot a bow, and there was a response of "cast Magic Missile", I don't think that would create much controversy. Similarly, using DEX/Stealth is how a non-caster achieves the functionality of an Invisibility spell. My initial reply to you was mostly intended as humour; what's surprised me is that has generated all this contoversy. ...
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  • Hriston's Avatar
    Yesterday, 02:26 AM
    I don’t know what you mean by “completing his entire move”. If you mean that he isn’t moving a full 60 feet, I don’t understand. There are always situations in combat where a player decides not to use every last foot of his or her character’s movement. For example: DM: The orcs look like they’re spoiling for a fight. What do you do? Player: I close the distance between us and attack. ...
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  • Hriston's Avatar
    Saturday, 14th July, 2018, 02:56 PM
    Me? No, that isn’t what I do. You say I stop people, by which I assume you mean the characters, but I don’t control the players’ characters. If a player’s action declaration contains more action than can be accomplished in their turn, I delay the resolution of any extra action until the next turn. For example, the dialogue at the table might go like this: DM Hriston: The bad guy is on the...
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Saturday, 14th July, 2018, 09:21 AM
    Who said there is a problem? I find it tends to help things that I and my players are on the same page. If the GM is either going to move quickly through the blocking obstacle, or else there is an overnight rest and encounter opportunity, I'm not really seeing the meaningful choice or trade off. Why does the passage of ingame time, and the passage of time at the table dealing with that extra...
    395 replies | 8074 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Saturday, 14th July, 2018, 09:07 AM
    You're wrong about 4e - it's in the rules for Stealth in the PHB2 that a succesful Stealth check makes you invisible to the person you're hiding from, which means that they can't see you with normal vision. (Depending on the circumstances, they may be able to see you with Blindsight or Tremorsense.) And as I've already said, 5e refers to being unseen - which in many circumstances is...
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Saturday, 14th July, 2018, 09:02 AM
    You're not selling me on 5e!
    189 replies | 6133 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Saturday, 14th July, 2018, 09:00 AM
    The ingame explanation is the same way s/he knows s/he is breathing, or hurting - s/he feels it. There's no "gradually increaasing". You start being able to memorise (say) 1 1st level spell. Then you can memorise 2. Then you can memorise 1 second level spell as well. Then 3 1st and 2 2nd. (I'm using the AD&D charts.) Each step up corresponds exactly to a class level - so if you treat...
    395 replies | 8074 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Saturday, 14th July, 2018, 06:32 AM
    One implication seems to be that in 4e you can play a ninja without using magic - you can have a rogue whose ability to stay hidden (by dint of camouflage, distraction, stillness, etc) is just that good - but in 5e, at least according to other posters in this thread, you can't.
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Saturday, 14th July, 2018, 06:29 AM
    Someone (maybe FrogReaver?) upthread posited that the suggestion in the OP was as absurd as a fighter declaring that s/he turns invisible. My response to that was that a fighter turning invisible equals making a DEX/Stealth check. In 4e that is literally true - a successful Stealth check makes you invisible. (As per the rules that I have already quoted twice upthread.) In 5e it is not...
    189 replies | 6133 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Saturday, 14th July, 2018, 06:15 AM
    There is no need for combat reslutoin to involve metagame, just as there is no need for (say) climbing resolution, or swimming resolution, or resolving a friendly game of darts, to involve metagame. For instance, in combat each combatant makes a roll, adjusted appropriately by armour, weapon, etc, and the higher roll wins. Much as one might resolve a game of darts. The fact that D&D...
    395 replies | 8074 view(s)
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  • Hriston's Avatar
    Friday, 13th July, 2018, 09:46 PM
    That difference doesn't seem to be part of your scenario, though. In your "Scenario 1" you have the barbarian stop 10 feet short of the chasm for an unnecessary running start, which I wouldn't require since the barbarian is running up to the edge of the chasm at the end of his turn, immediately before jumping at the beginning of his next turn. It's unclear whether the goons are on the near or far...
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Friday, 13th July, 2018, 11:29 AM
    I don't see what your issue is, then, with the ranger/cleric in 3E. The cleric does the odd bit of melee fighting, and wanders through some interesting terrain! Which is what a ranger does.
    395 replies | 8074 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Friday, 13th July, 2018, 11:24 AM
    There is also the opening sentence, that says that "he GM decides when circumstances are appropriate for hiding", as well as the bit that says "under certain circumstances, the GM might allow you to stay hidden as you approach a creature that is distracted, allowing you to gain advantage on an attack roll before you are seen." Presumably it is also possible in the world of 5e for someone who is...
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Friday, 13th July, 2018, 08:19 AM
    I agree with Tony Vargas in having a different view of this. In 4e, you get XP for playing and (via the parcel system) get treasure for earning XP, so magic items aren't a reward either. The "rewards" in 4e (as in, stuff that isn't a guaranteed result of playing the game, and which is obtained, or not, based on player decisions) are either in the fiction ("story rewards"), or else the thrill...
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Friday, 13th July, 2018, 07:34 AM
    In 3E the "process" is defeating monsters. They might have been defeated via swordplay, or a mighty spell, or by being tricked into running off a cliff. The XP system is indifferent to these nuances. So what would it even mean to be "consciously trying to improve a specific set of abilities"? In your system, does a player have to use a ranger weapon to put XP into the ranger class? Cast...
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Friday, 13th July, 2018, 04:05 AM
    If you're not talking about cheating, then what does it mean for a chess player to "game the system" and thereby "win more often than s/he should"? Do you mean not giving the other player an appropriate handicap? That's on the borderline between rules and courtesy. In party-based D&D, though, what is it to take advantage of a fellow player? And what are the loopholes, unintended consequences...
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Friday, 13th July, 2018, 03:59 AM
    But in this case, you can just read the mechanics of encounter powers and the like into the physics of the world. Just like a character knows that being hit by a longsword will never maim or cause serious bleeding, but will simply whittle away staying power, so s/he knows that once between hour rests s/he can make an extra spurt of action (or whatever else it is that is on a short rest recovery...
    395 replies | 8074 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Friday, 13th July, 2018, 01:38 AM
    If you mean "cheating", just come out and say it. And then tell us what cheating looks like in D&D, or RQ, or . . . Given that the rules expressly suggest this, how can it count as "gaming the system"? And why don't we just call this playing well? As we would in chess, cricket, poker, or any other game?
    55 replies | 1182 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Friday, 13th July, 2018, 01:29 AM
    What edition are you referring to? I already quoted the 4e rules for Stealh, and will quote them again (from PHB2, p 222): success on a Stealth check means "You are hidden, which means you are silent and invisible to the enemy". So it's not true, in 4e, that to become invisible requires something beyond successfully making a Stealth check. In 5e, the rules for hiding don't use invisibility...
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Thursday, 12th July, 2018, 11:34 PM
    This depends on edition. It's true for Gygax's AD&D. It may or may not be true in 2nd-ed era, Dragonlance-style play, depending on the conventions that apply at a given table. It's not true for all those 5e tables using "milestone" XP. In my own experience it's not true for 4e, where - especially once the full suite of XP rules from the DMG, DMG2 and Essentials is being used - XP is basically a...
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  • Hriston's Avatar
    Thursday, 12th July, 2018, 08:08 PM
    The idea that the 15 feet is lost because it wasn't used is a bit odd to me. Just because there's an upper limit to the amount of movement you can use doesn't mean you've lost anything by not using it. Technically, you're allowed to take a bonus action every turn, but frequently there isn't one to take. No one complains in that situation that they've lost their bonus action. I'd put this in the...
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  • Hriston's Avatar
    Thursday, 12th July, 2018, 03:57 PM
    Thanks for elaborating and explaining my point better than I did. I think it may have been missed by others due to the terseness of my prose.
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  • Hriston's Avatar
    Thursday, 12th July, 2018, 03:52 PM
    This isn't what I'm advocating, though. You don't seem to get that in the fiction there is no break between one round and the next. The story doesn't include a moment where PC B is stopping at the edge of the chasm. The story I'm imagining is that B runs up to the edge and leaps across, which I think is the same story you imagine. So our difference isn't in the resulting story, but rather it's in...
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Thursday, 12th July, 2018, 01:22 PM
    A "pounding" that doesn't slow her or impede her performance in any way. And what does "I did take a hit or two" mean when your PC has been fighting a dragon? It only got in a couple of bites?!
    395 replies | 8074 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Thursday, 12th July, 2018, 11:18 AM
    Casting a spell, or memorising/preparing one, also requires "specific circumstances and actions" which may need GM adjudication to resolve. Likewise the OP's suggestion that the player of a wingless or wing-scarred character might declare that those wings are magically regrown. That action in a RPG is in some fashion subject to adjudiction doesn't seem that significant a point.
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Thursday, 12th July, 2018, 11:12 AM
    I agree with the inverted commas, which means I don't really agree that any system can be "gamed" by players. Playing a system as it is meant to be played isn't gaming, it's just playing. It seems to me that the notion of players "gaming the system" is a result of years (decades) of groups using Gygax's AD&D resolution mechanics for games that don't have the same play goals as Gygaxian...
    55 replies | 1182 view(s)
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  • Hriston's Avatar
    Thursday, 12th July, 2018, 05:46 AM
    Hriston replied to Timelord
    The timelord doesn’t have a robust ability to time-travel into the past. It can see into the past, and it has the ability to mimic a limited form of the wish spell, forcing a reroll of a single die roll from the last round. That being said, I think there’s some good potential for a campaign featuring timelords in the idea of utopic and dystopic alternate realities, and that the concept could...
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  • Hriston's Avatar
    Thursday, 12th July, 2018, 05:09 AM
    This makes no sense to me. The whole point of the combat round is to limit how much stuff you can do with your PC. You want to do more stuff than fits into this round? It’ll have to wait until next round to be resolved. No, you’ve got my “view of the rules” wrong. B doesn’t fall if he tries to jump. That’s not what happens. What happens is the DM tells B’s player that B doesn’t have...
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Thursday, 12th July, 2018, 02:53 AM
    In 4e there were the following paragon and epic tier rogue abilities, that required training in Stealth: * You must already be hidden to use this power. You are invisible until you leave your current square. No other action that you perform makes you visible. * You must already be hidden to use this power. You are invisible until the end of the encounter or until you end the effect by...
    189 replies | 6133 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Thursday, 12th July, 2018, 02:37 AM
    I think this is quite an idiosyncratic view. I would say that the reality of the D&D world is that people suffer light, serious and critical wounds, suffer maiming (which requires Regeneration to heal), and have mystical "life essence" which some undead can drain and which requires Restoration to restore. Nothing in an D&D rulebook or setting has ever made me think that hit points are the...
    395 replies | 8074 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Thursday, 12th July, 2018, 02:18 AM
    From Gygax's DMG, p 85: If the relative value of the monster(s) or guardian device fought equals or exceeds that of the party which took the treasure, experience is awarded on a 1 for 1 basis. If the guardian(s) was relatively weaker, award experience on a 5 g.p. to 4 x.P., 3 to 2, 2 to 1, 3 to 1, or even 4 or more to 1 basis according to the relative strengths. For example, if a 10th level...
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Thursday, 12th July, 2018, 01:53 AM
    Classic D&D has many action declarations that are auto-successes - eg I cast Transmute Muck to Rock, assuming the character is a magic user of sufficient level who has memorised that spell. But a lot of people describe that as "creative casting", not "dull".
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  • Hriston's Avatar
    Wednesday, 11th July, 2018, 09:27 PM
    The PC doesn't have to wait for a round before it jumps, the player does. The combat round only pertains to the players at the table. The PC isn't aware it's happening. To me, the abstraction that makes a jump a discrete event that's resolved in the same turn is well worth maintaining the simultaneity of action in the round. No one for a second believes the PC is hanging in the air while...
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 11th July, 2018, 11:37 AM
    On Attributes: the attributes in In a Wicked Age are interesting: * Covertly * Direclty * For myself * For others * With love * With violence These are rated with dice, and every action uses two of them for its resolution.
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 11th July, 2018, 06:17 AM
    DW = Dungeon World.
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 11th July, 2018, 06:15 AM
    Emerikol - there was a whole generation of fantasy RPGers who, because they disliked metagame mechanics, dropped D&D for metagame-free systems like RQ, RM and the like. (At the time, these were promoted as "realistic" systems.) Those systems all drop AC. They all drop combat-as-hp-attrition. (Though they may use hp for other purposes - as meat points in RQ, as a measure of bruising, blood loss...
    395 replies | 8074 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 11th July, 2018, 05:20 AM
    Or when one or both sides regard negotiation as demanded by honour or morality or custom. Or when one or both sides think they are better talkers than fighters. Or when one or both sides believe negotiation is more likely to deliver desirable results. Aragorn negotiates with Sauron's armies, once Sauron has been defeated, because that is what will serve Gondor's interests, and what is fitting...
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 11th July, 2018, 04:21 AM
    Isn't that called making a DEX/Stealth check?
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 11th July, 2018, 04:06 AM
    I thought the point of playing OSR systems is to have the classic D&D experience - and XP foe gold is pretty central to that. Otherwise, why not play DW?
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 11th July, 2018, 01:46 AM
    I don't know anything about video games, but I think I missed the unsavoury monetisation schemes of 4e. I bought the books I wanted, but not the ones I didn't (Draconomicons, Eberron, most of the adventures); I didn't buy any miniatures (which in any event were being sold well before 4e was released); I paid for a couple of months subscription to DDI around 2011 to download all the Dragons and...
    271 replies | 7701 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Tuesday, 10th July, 2018, 09:33 AM
    This doesn't seem very controversial to me. Here is a somewhat comparable thing that happened in my 4e game. Roleplaying in a RPG tends to mean "playing one's character". This is one way of playing one's character. Someone who describes the furniture in his/her PC's house isn't "not roleplaying" just because the purchase and arrangement of said furniture happened at some earlier, unspecified...
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Tuesday, 10th July, 2018, 04:57 AM
    Classes and roles are fundamental to 4e PC building - much more so than in 3E or 5e. To get rid of them would be to rebuild from the ground up.
    271 replies | 7701 view(s)
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  • Hriston's Avatar
    Tuesday, 10th July, 2018, 02:48 AM
    Hriston replied to Timelord
    I’ve just uploaded a new version of the pdf, mostly to change the saves against the time alteration powers to use Wisdom and against the aging powers to use Constitution. They both used Intelligence before, which I did because the original powers used a save against wands which magic users were generally good at. I’ve since noticed that in 5E wands impose all sorts of saves, so I’ve gone with...
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Tuesday, 10th July, 2018, 02:35 AM
    WotC is a commercial publisher - it is always trying to maximise profits! Every time posters on these boards celebrate the commercial success of fifth edition, they are celebrating WotC's maximisation of its profits. As far as respect for customer base is concerned - I'm not 100% sure what that means, but 4e did not contain dangerous components, or involve any sort of fraudulent...
    271 replies | 7701 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Monday, 9th July, 2018, 08:32 AM
    Is 4e too slow in play? That is a design problem (although obviously to some extent at least relative to taste). Is 4e too different from AD&D and 3E, and hence not popular with that market? That is not a design problem; it's a commercial problem, but doesn't tell us anything about the qualities of 4e as a game. (It's not inherent in the notion of game, or even good game, that it be...
    271 replies | 7701 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Monday, 9th July, 2018, 04:48 AM
    There is a popular series of articles on these boards that stats up mythic figures (Achilles, Jean D'Arc, Lancelot, etc) for 5e. Those statblocks are almost entirely combat-oriented. They don't contain Ideals, Bonds or Flaws, despite these being a core 5e mechanic for expressing character personalities. The 5e skill system is very similar to the 4e one, but lacks a coherent resolution method....
    271 replies | 7701 view(s)
    3 XP
  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 4th July, 2018, 10:06 AM
    Classic D&D XP is super metagamey. XP for "good roleplaying" even moreso. I don't know what system for awarding XP Emerikol uses.
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 4th July, 2018, 12:25 AM
    This claim is controversial. AD&D saving throws are metagame: Gygax says as much in his discussion of saving throws in his DMG. AD&D hit points are metagame: see above. Barbarian rage, in 3E, is as metagame as martial dailies in 4e. Spell memorisation encourages highly metagame play, and the fact that there is a veneer of an in-fiction rationale doesn't change that.
    395 replies | 8074 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 4th July, 2018, 12:21 AM
    Aldarc's post makes an important point - there is no contrast, in general, between enjoys metagame mechanics and does not care about immersion in character. Rather, the metagame mechanics are part of the techniques used to achieve immersion.
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Tuesday, 3rd July, 2018, 08:40 AM
    I think that's actually quite impractical for a lot of RPGing situations. And also still doesn't do the job. No doubt there's stuff in the Lonely Planet guide to Melbourne that I don't know; but as far as knowing the shortcuts and alleyways around my house, I know them better than the Lonely Planet will tell you about them. I think having mechanics that allow a PC to pace him-/herself, and...
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Sunday, 1st July, 2018, 03:45 PM
    Emerikol - I agree with you that HD and Inspiration are metagame mechanics. (I think hp are also, but maybe you don't agree with that.) But I don't think I agree about action surge and second wind. These are correlates of the character, in the ficiton, trying harder and pushing him-/herself to his/her limits.
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Friday, 29th June, 2018, 04:47 PM
    And how does this tend to show the viability of fighters? They're not needed for DPR. They're not needed to defend "squishies". So what distinctive capability does a fighter bring to the table?
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Thursday, 28th June, 2018, 12:19 AM
    Can we stop talking about fuding? It's irrelevant to this thread. (Maybe some people think that D&D can't involve escalating stakes without fudging? But even were that so, this thread is in General RPGs, not a D&D sub-forum.)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 27th June, 2018, 12:00 AM
    Fudging is a red herring in relation to Vincent Baker's remarks. The play of a RPG can establih that something is at stake in action resoution, and that the players care about that, without any need for GM fuding. I also think a focus on the risk of PC death is spmewhat misplaced. I do'nt think the threat of protagonist death is necessary to create suspense. And in RPGing, relying on that as...
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  • Hriston's Avatar
    Tuesday, 26th June, 2018, 03:06 AM
    Just like mountain dwarves don't get Dwarven Toughness, I think if you're going to give your subrace an extra ASI you should remove something comparable, like Stone's Endurance, and replace it with something weaker.
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  • Hriston's Avatar
    Monday, 25th June, 2018, 08:37 PM
    The variant human is paying 4 ASI points in exchange for a feat and a skill. I'd charge a member of a non-human race at least 3 ASI points and take away a minor racial benefit like damage resistance or something.
    14 replies | 537 view(s)
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    Saturday, 23rd June, 2018, 02:38 AM
    True, but not with RPG techniques attached! OK, that's a technique, thanks! In my BW game, the PCs getting word of the marriage of the Gynarch of Hardby to an established nemesis NPC played a similar sort of role. To go back to the Star Wars example: How do we set up (something like) Han being frozen as a possible cost of finding a Jedi Master?
    156 replies | 4673 view(s)
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    Friday, 22nd June, 2018, 01:12 PM
    I'm with Garthanos - the biggest change is not the way of generating probabilities and comparing them to target numbers! Uniformity has an obvious simplicity to it, and saves having to muck about with lots of dice. But there are issues with making everything have the same granularity. I've been playing a bit of Classic Traveller lately - it uses mostly uniform rolls (2d6, occasionally 3d6)...
    61 replies | 1871 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Friday, 22nd June, 2018, 11:59 AM
    Here's an example.
    79 replies | 1922 view(s)
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    Friday, 22nd June, 2018, 11:42 AM
    In Cortex+ Heroic the action is not called "create an advantage" but rather "create an Asset". Otherwise it works very similarly to what Aldarc describes, with two exceptions: (i) only one Asset can be used at a time; (ii) an Asset doesn't adjust the result but rather adds a die to the pool. As well as Asset's there are stunts (bonus dice triggered by spending points) and resources (bonus...
    2862 replies | 82866 view(s)
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    Friday, 22nd June, 2018, 10:25 AM
    I've played plenty of D&D using 2nd ed AD&D NWPs (the same mechanic is also found in the DSG/WSG, and I've used those too). I wouldn't recommend it to anyone. They're fairly weak descriptors, with a poor relationship to PC build rules, masquerading as a resolution mechanic.
    2862 replies | 82866 view(s)
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    Friday, 22nd June, 2018, 10:18 AM
    That's a weird thing to say. If you've only ever played auction-and-trick card games (bridge, 500, etc) and then play blackjack, you skill at remembering played cards might still help you but you're going to have to learn a lot of new stuff. The skills a player gets from playing Caves of Chaos and Tomb of Horrors and White Plume Mountain are going to be of pretty modest use in a game of In a...
    2862 replies | 82866 view(s)
    1 XP
  • pemerton's Avatar
    Friday, 22nd June, 2018, 09:11 AM
    On definitions: Google gives me suspense = a state or feeling of excited or anxious uncertainty about what may happen. On outcomes: some outcomes (in films, say, or novels) are known. When I'm watching The Bourne Identity, and 10 or so minutes in Matt Damon's character is involved in some mad hijinks the lead to him being chased by security guards, police, etc - well, I know that he's not...
    156 replies | 4673 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Friday, 22nd June, 2018, 07:04 AM
    When I talk about "engaging the fiction" I'm not talking about evocative narration. I'm talking about the need to actually declare actions that leverage the ingame situation in rich and perhaps complex ways. For instance, when resolving a PC's persuasion of a NPC by way of a CHA check, the player has to declare actions that actually engage with the established dispositions, interests etc of the...
    65 replies | 2692 view(s)
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    Thursday, 21st June, 2018, 03:01 PM
    But AbdulAlhazred was, in two posts that you replied to: You quored the last para of each of the above posts in your replies. And those paragraphs are clearly about OA. And AbdulAlhazred is correct that the success chances for NWPs in that book were very low.
    2862 replies | 82866 view(s)
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    Thursday, 21st June, 2018, 02:34 PM
    AbdulAlhazred was talking about OA non-weapon proficiencies, which are not based on stats but ratherhave proficiency-specific success numbers. And as AbdulAlhazred said, the success numbers are high (eg for Horse Riding, it's 18+ on a d20).
    2862 replies | 82866 view(s)
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    Thursday, 21st June, 2018, 12:10 PM
    I think a skill system can handle this pretty well. The key feature of skill resolution rather than spell resolution that Hussar is pointing to is (i) the need to engage the fiction in action declaration and resolution, and (ii) the lack of auto-success. You can get those features while allowing high level PCs to do things with their skills that are superhuman in capability.
    65 replies | 2692 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Thursday, 21st June, 2018, 09:51 AM
    They all tend to define the character in terms of mechanically-rated abilities to perform certain tasks. They all tend to approach resolution in a fairly granular, "Did my attempt to do that work?" fashion. (D&D hp-attrition combat is an exception, but (i) it tends not to be generalised by D&D players to other spheres of action, except in 4e - skill challenges - which seem to have been rather...
    2862 replies | 82866 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Thursday, 21st June, 2018, 03:46 AM
    I don't know much aboug FUDGE, but I can report that Fate Core (at least the version I have - blue cover with a superhero/cyborg ape and (I think) someone in a white/grey overcoat) does have a skill list. It's a pretty generic one.
    2862 replies | 82866 view(s)
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    Thursday, 21st June, 2018, 01:12 AM
    This goes right back to the OP! Absolutely. I don't get this idea that "different" = "narrower", or that "GM curated experience" = "caters to/generates a wide range of experiences". For instance: if player X wants to play Fate, and player Y wants to play Moldvay Basic, a game in which the GM curates Ideals/Bonds/Flaws for X, while rolling wandering monsters for Y, isn't giving either of...
    2862 replies | 82866 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Thursday, 21st June, 2018, 01:02 AM
    I don't think the latter is system-independent at all. Compare Manbearcat's example of DitV, where the system establishes a relationship with the PC's brother; or In a Wicked Age (that's on my mind befause I GMed a short session of it not too long ago) which establishes interlinked and conflicting "best interests" for each character (PC and NPC). Ie not system-independent. OK, replace...
    156 replies | 4673 view(s)
    1 XP
  • pemerton's Avatar
    Thursday, 21st June, 2018, 12:45 AM
    I thought it was fairly similar to you. That was what I was trying to get at; and it seemed similar to CoC in that respect (insanity in CoC rather than death). This seems broadly similar to Umbran on Dread: it is known that some crisis will occur (the collapse of the tower => PC death; the need to confront the PC's brother); but there is uncertainty around when/how this will happen (until...
    156 replies | 4673 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 20th June, 2018, 09:37 AM
    I've never played Dread, but have read quite a bit about it. Looked at through the lens of Baker's blog post, I want to say (as you do) that we all know that the Jenga tower will eventually collapse, if enough pulls are made. So the suspense is not in relation to the outcome, but rather in relation to what might be achieved or avoided prior to that outcome coming about. (I would say that...
    156 replies | 4673 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 20th June, 2018, 08:57 AM
    But isn't this a bit like Vincent Baker's example of Babe? We're pretty sure, aren't we, that Ingrid Bergman will survive - so what exactly is generating the suspense? That's not to object to the sorts of reveals (and cut scenes?) that you mention in your post, only to wonder more about how they're related to the generation of suspense. Another issue has to do with making a RPG work - which...
    156 replies | 4673 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 20th June, 2018, 08:55 AM
    I'm not sure how this generates suspense - especially if it is predictable! I can see that it might generate tension - "Is my PC going to die as a result of this?" - but that in and of itself, without more, doesn't seem to generate suspense (eg if the player can just bring in a new PC of roughly the same functionality, then what cost has been paid?).
    156 replies | 4673 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 20th June, 2018, 08:45 AM
    Burning Wheel has stated GM's principles, and also duties that govern "the sacred and most holy role of the players". From the rulebook (Revised p 268; Gold p 551 - the text is the same in both editions): In Burning Wheel, it is the GM's job to interpret all of the various intents of the players' actions and mesh them into a cohesive whole that fits within the context of the game. He's got...
    2862 replies | 82866 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 20th June, 2018, 02:49 AM
    Suppose we have established a goal. (Maybe the players choose this. Maybe the GM reads them the blurb on the back of the module cover and the players agree to run with that.) Probably the GM, or the module, provides a starting point for doing something that might contribute to that goal. Suppose that the players (via their PCs) engage that starting point and fail. How do we now respond to that...
    156 replies | 4673 view(s)
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Friday, 13th July, 2018

  • 11:54 PM - Oofta mentioned Hriston in post Hang Time - What if you jump farther than your speed?
    @Hriston, I've given my reason and logic. You stop people because they don't have any more movement but then rule that they really were moving at the start of their next turn. I had typed up a longer response but the short answer is: do whatever you want. Make D&D a game first and a story second. It's been a long week and I don't care.

Friday, 4th May, 2018

  • 04:32 AM - AbdulAlhazred mentioned Hriston in post What is *worldbuilding* for?
    But so are his games, the difference is that his game is limited with respect to the sort of fiction that can result based on strict adherence to genre, theme, player concerns, etc... right? So is it just that the 2 playstyles are just 2 different types of choose your own adventure books? No, because, for one thing, the genre of, lets say, 'Epic High Fantasy' is MUCH MUCH larger than 'what can happen in DL1' (Dragon Lance being Epic High Fantasy, though I'm sure we could hair split about that, but lets not). You understand the difference? In Story Now there's no 'plot', there's no 'adventures you can go on', or even well-established world-facts that can't be contravened for the sake of story. The very genesis of the story is also QUALITATIVELY different, and this gets back to what Hriston said before, there's a qualitative dimension to this whole 'agency debate' thing. You cannot simply spit out numbers, or even relative measures, like Maxperson is doing. It simply doesn't work. He's also correct, IMHO, in his analysis of the very nature of 'agency' itself, which is that nobody who seriously has the sort of philosophical credentials to be serious about defining it is going to say that actual humans have '100% agency'. Many might say exactly the opposite! The point is, players in pemerton's game are not simply given choices of circumstances within which they must have their characters navigate. They have a higher level input, to help determine what those circumstances are, the very process of creation of them, from the very beginning. It may be that in Maxperson's game you can burn down the building and change the scenario, or walk away and go elsewhere, but, unless you engage him outside the realm of the narrative, you can't actually engage in the creative process o...

Thursday, 3rd May, 2018

  • 01:10 PM - Imaro mentioned Hriston in post What is *worldbuilding* for?
    I can only agree with what Hriston has said. I simply don't see how getting to contribute to fiction that involves the stuff one wants, and addresses the thematic concerns one has signalled one cares about, can count as a limit on one's agency. It's an expression of it! (Also: I've made this same point upthread; and so has AbdulAlhazred.) Same question I asked Hriston above...
  • 09:46 AM - pemerton mentioned Hriston in post What is *worldbuilding* for?
    But so are his games, the difference is that his game is limited with respect to the sort of fiction that can result based on strict adherence to genre, theme, player concerns, etc... right? The limitations on player agency over the content of the shared fiction in Story Now gaming are the genre considerations, themes, and other concerns/priorities introduced by the players themselves? I don't get that. Edited to add: Those are examples of the players exercising control/agency over the content of the fiction, not the other way around!I can only agree with what Hriston has said. I simply don't see how getting to contribute to fiction that involves the stuff one wants, and addresses the thematic concerns one has signalled one cares about, can count as a limit on one's agency. It's an expression of it! (Also: I've made this same point upthread; and so has AbdulAlhazred.)

Friday, 20th April, 2018

  • 01:02 AM - pemerton mentioned Hriston in post Game Mechanics And Player Agency
    What is being proposed here is to take the "how the character chooses to react" for social engagements and hand it to the GM.Actually, I think the only people in this thread making that particular proposal are those who are against it! Afrodyte and Hriston have proposed using the Ideals/Bond/Flaws/Inspiration mechanic in various ways - perhaps awarding Inspiration for responsing to a persuasive NPC; or having NPC requests, in appropriate circumstances, engage with PC Ideals/Bonds Flaws, thereby generating an appropriate pressure on the player to respond. I have pointed out how other functional social mechanics operate, and none of them involves the GM deciding how the PC is to react.

Wednesday, 11th April, 2018

  • 02:48 AM - pemerton mentioned Hriston in post Do We Still Need "Race" in D&D?
    ...solve the issue, and in some ways makes it more accute. Under this model, "race" becomes even more a marker of biological inheritance, and equates that with a person's identity and capabilities, while also making questions about biological purity all the more pressing. To explain further: at the moment, maybe some "elves" are really "half-elves" - ie people with ancestry that most would regard as human - raised among the elves - a sort-of D&D approximation to Elrond. Once you make race unequivocally biology, how does such a person fit into the mechanical scheme? Upthread some poster were discussing rules for quarter-elves, eighth-orcs etc. My view is that those sorts of rules do nothing to resolve the issue I have been posting about in this thread, and indeed tend to exacerbate it. I'm not a designer, and haven't tried to do any sort of systematic study of the mechanical alternatives and how they might be rendered well in the fiction. That said, upthread - in discussion with Hriston - I already sketched an idea of elaborating on the existing background rules that are found in 5e, 13th Age and maybe some other recent d20 games. Being an elf, a dwarf, a half-elf or whatever could just be another component of background choices.

Tuesday, 27th March, 2018

  • 07:58 AM - Coroc mentioned Hriston in post The best solution for longswords
    Hriston super nice build, very versatile, and ..... it is not a powergamer build !! Why? Well your elf wizard got cantrips in 5e - means unless your DM does not Feature a no Magic Zone every other session your elf wizard will use his cantrips rather than his longsword. Therefore any optimized powergamer build would put those Points for Str in Wis rather for better saving throw. So if your wizard would use his longsword at my table instead of cantrips you might get Bonus XP for good RP from time to time :P

Wednesday, 21st March, 2018

  • 03:49 PM - Coroc mentioned Hriston in post The best solution for longswords
    Hriston #126 yepp exactly that, also, a Longsword was a designated two handed weapon which could be used 1 handed in an emergency or while mounted, with those who left place for 1,5 Hands/Bastard sword (You would grip the pommel rather with the left Hand than the grip) were a more compact Version of the Longsword, easier to use in only 1 Hand, and easier to carry around as a civilian.

Wednesday, 22nd November, 2017

  • 02:32 PM - Maxperson mentioned Hriston in post Come out and put yourself on the Gygax scale!
    ...t least a weak implication that the disjuncts are exclusive, whereas using "and" allows for the fact that it might be one, some or all of the alternatives that a player determines. The syntax and semantics of "and" and "or" in English is not the same as that of the formal logical operators that go under those labels. Also, I think 5e is a bit equivocal over what counts as roleplaying. Eg p 66 of the Basic PDF says, "Roleplaying is a part of every aspect of the game, and it comes to the fore during social interactions. Your character’s quirks, mannerisms, and personality influence how interactions resolve." And p 35 says that "if you have inspiration, you can reward another player for good roleplaying". This is closer towards roleplaying as characterisation than roleplaying as making decisions for one's character, I think. Which is to say that I think the D&D rules might reflect the same tension/ambiguity that we see in the community of players. Here's the thing, though, if Hriston was correct and roleplaying is all equal, there couldn't be such a thing as good roleplaying to reward with inspiration. Roleplaying can only be good, average, bad, etc. if there are grades of roleplay, such as in the examples that I gave to him.
  • 01:46 PM - pemerton mentioned Hriston in post Come out and put yourself on the Gygax scale!
    Roleplaying is a part of every aspect of the game. Even combat. Even resource management.Unless I've misunderstood, here you're agreeing with Hriston (as well as with the 5e rules). I'm generally sympathetic to this also. I'd probably want to flesh it out a bit - roleplaying means deciding what your character does, thinks, says, etc - where this means not just deciding those things in mechanical terms bu establishing some shared fiction in respect of them. The persona of the character is easier to observe through what they say and how, rather than through their choices in combat.I don't really agree with this, though. Who a character chooses to kill, or to save, or to spare, may tell us a great deal about that character. And even if the combat is not so high-stakes as that, it can still involve establishing the character within the fiction just as much as other sorts of action declaration. To the extent that many D&D players perceive this as not so, I think it's because D&D combat easily defaults to being "fiction free" - ie rolls to hit, and to damage, with adjustments of hit point totals, and none of that anchored in any...

Monday, 20th November, 2017

  • 03:19 PM - OB1 mentioned Hriston in post Come out and put yourself on the Gygax scale!
    Maxperson & Hriston While I think you are both having an interesting side conversation, I did want to make something clear regarding the gygax scale. It's not a measure of how much you role-play or how much you game-play, it's a measure of how much you personally are attracted to those aspects of the game, however you define those terms, not how someone else does. That said, I do think I'm better off with my original Story/Mechanic scale than role-play/game-play that I later suggested and think the below question helps better illuminate that there is not a zero sum between the two elements. How attracted are you to the Elements of Story and Mechanics in an RPG? G0 - 100% Story/ 0% Mechanics G1 - 100% Story/ 33% Mechanics G2 - 100% Story/ 66% Mechanics G3 - 100% Story/ 100% Mechanics G4 - 66% Story/ 100% Mechanics G5 - 33% Story/ 100% Mechanics G6 - 0% Story/ 100% Mechancis

Monday, 13th November, 2017

  • 01:59 AM - Maxperson mentioned Hriston in post Point Buy vs Rolling for Stats
    Err, what? My new poll thread? I haven't started any new poll thread. And, it's pretty amusing to watch you complain about people flat out lying after all the noise you've made about other people misunderstanding your points. "These results aren't what I want, people must by LYING!!!!" Snort. But, the point is taken. A single poll on a forum isn't proof of anything. I just thought it was an interesting talking point, not concrete proof of anything. And, I imagine that the preponderance of AL play which appears to be very, very popular would skew poll results more than anything. Are AL players more or less likely to head to an online forum to talk about the game? I don't know, but, it could be. Which would skew results as well. Maybe I'm just a bit naive, but, I'd rather ascribe simpler answers than flat out dishonesty. Huh! I thought it was yours. Well, someone started a new one with better questions. :P Edit: It was Hriston. All you H's look the same. The tally is now 0 for pick your stats, 15 for point buy and array, 17 that use some combination of those and/or 4d6-L, and another 17 in the "Other" category, which I'm sure is primarily those like me who roll with another method than 4d6-L.

Saturday, 11th November, 2017

  • 07:20 PM - pemerton mentioned Hriston in post Point Buy vs Rolling for Stats
    ...ft out in the cold. He's probably imaging a world where there isn't Inspector 12 measuring all of the people who want to be PC adventurers. Inspector 12: "Sorry Bork, you have a 17 strength before racial bonuses. I have to stamp you an NPC. Next!" There are doubtless multiple individuals with that combination of scores. However, it strains credulity that so many of them turn to adventuring as a profession where those individuals within the population who happen to have a 17 strength and a 7 dex (or the reverse) do not. The inconsistency is that the PCs are thus drawn from (one assumes) a subset of the population rather than the entire population. The bell curve tells me there's going to be members of the population out there with Intelligence 18 and Wisdom 7 - why can't I play one of those - or at least have the chance to, should the dice be so kind?Being a PC or a NPC is not a property of a character in the gameworld, so all of the above is pretty strange. (And really, Hriston made this point upthread already. EDIT - including in a ninja post just above this one!) Not to mention: if there is an NPC in play, and a player wants to take it over as a PC for whatever reason, presumably no rule prevents that if everyone at the table is amenable. (They may not be amenable if the stats are completely broken, but this would be a time for ad hoc rulings rather then applying the default PC-generation rules.) And as Hussar points out, no PC can start the game as a wealthy person, or a poor person, or a king, or a shop-owner or farm-owner, etc; yet presumably the gameworld contains plenty of such people who are in-principle amenable to an adventuring life. The rule that PCs must be built within certain mechanical parameters for stats is no different from the same rule vis-a-vis wealth, or race (why can't I play an adventuring hill giant?), or inherited magic items (why can't I play an adventurer whose grandma bequeathed me a vorpal sword?). It's a rule intended...

Tuesday, 24th October, 2017

  • 10:23 PM - Oofta mentioned Hriston in post Point Buy vs Rolling for Stats
    ...o - and there would have to be since what evidence I presented would certainly not be enough - but I'm not going through all the editions that Arial has played to find it all. Nor am I going to argue about how the evidence supports his conclusions, because I simply don't care enough to write a thesis on the subject. Do you really believe that his view is an untenable reading of the rules? I believe it's an irrelevant reading of the rules; commoners have a 10 in every ability score tells me nothing other than from a game standpoint they are assumed to have no pluses or minuses to skills/attacks/saves based on ability scores. An average 10 intelligence tells me no more about the distribution of intelligence than the fact that the average IQ score is 100. As far as what was written decades ago, that is also irrelevant. I'm not playing OD&D. I know Arial wants to go through the history of the game, but there is no guarantee that he's not just cherry-picking or misreading as Hriston is stating. I can say that in my opinion 3d6 is a pretty horrible way of modeling ability scores. Far, far too many people would be mentally or physically handicapped using that system. The bell curve is simply too flat.

Wednesday, 4th October, 2017

  • 01:05 AM - Ristamar mentioned Hriston in post True Seeing vs Invisibility/Mind Blank
    If you cast true seeing, one of the benefits is gaining True Sight, so I don't understand how one works and the other don't by your logic. For the reason Hriston mentioned. Truesight as an effect of divination is blocked. Truesight as an innate feature is not a divination, hence it is not blocked.

Monday, 10th July, 2017

  • 12:10 PM - pemerton mentioned Hriston in post Three pillars: what is "exploration"?
    Libramarian, Hriston - interesting thoughts. (I've nothing else very substantive to contribute, though I can relate the "unknown unknowns" theory of exploration to some - but certainly not all - skill challenges that I've run in 4e. Also, I'm intrigued by the idea of "climbing the cliff" competing for the same functional space as "fighting a demon".)

Saturday, 18th February, 2017

  • 11:12 AM - pemerton mentioned Hriston in post Whatever "lore" is, it isn't "rules."
    ...anon are not proof that those things exist. Canon doesn't say that there aren't 10,000 moons. It wasn't a comparison of 1 against 10,000. Just for fun, I went back and found the post: My point is that three moons is compatible with the setting canon represented by the folio and boxed set. That someone later writes something about Oerth's moons that becomes part of canon and contradicts three moons would in no way diminish three moons' compatibility with the original canon. Why stop at 3? Why not have 12,000 moons fill the night sky. That would also be "compatible" with the canon of there are two moons. Heck, the 12,000 moons could bash into each others, causing some to break up and rain death and destruction down upon Oerth. Pretty sure nothing in canon says that didn't happen, so that would also be "compatible" with canon. So you certainly didn't seem to be "arguing that things not mentioned in canon are not proof that those things exist" - you seemed to be trying to rebut Hriston's contention that "three moons is compatible with the setting canon". And your refutation seems to take the rhetorical form of a reductio by appeal to extreme cases: "Why stop at 3? . . . Pretty sure nothing in canon says that [various extreme cases that you conjure up] didn't happen, so that would also be "compatible" with canon." Now, here is the post from FrogReaver which you described as "demonstrat[ing] that anything taken to a ridiculous extreme is bad": First, additions are not changes in the way we are talking about them. Introducing NEW heroes and NEW problems, etc. doesn't change existing canon. It adds to it. Second, I've said at LEAST a dozen times that changes through game play by the players is fine.So you are fine with the DM adding a new God / Goddess? A new great city in a very noticeable location that has never been mentioned before? A new moon that's never been mentioned? An extra sun? A evil emperor that has taken over most of the known world? Needless t...

Thursday, 2nd February, 2017

  • 02:25 AM - pemerton mentioned Hriston in post Whatever "lore" is, it isn't "rules."
    I actually asked for the folio information as it was presented so that I could see if the two moons were stated definitively but no one has actually posted what is in the folio... only descriptions of what is in it. But what exactly does it say... If the folio states there are 2 moons... then it is. Why is it so hard to post exactly what the folio states about the moons of Oerth?I'm not posting it because I don't have access to my books at present. Nagol and I already told you what it says, though: it's an in-fiction treatise describing the heavenly bodies as they are known to that in-fiction author. As someone else ( Hriston? no, lowkey13) pointed out, that in-fiction treatise itself refers to other books that exist only as an act of authorial imagination on Gygax's part. And I see now that Nagol has posted the text. Which (surprise, surprise) is just as it has been described to you! I thought you were talking about canon being used to de-legitimize lore people dont like... Someone not agreeing with your DM style is a different subject... even if its because they like following canon and you dont.Have you read the thread? Maxperson didn't say that he has a different GMing style from me. He said that my decision to include WoHS in my GH game (which also meant including a third moon), and to use the lable WoHS for that magical order, was very poor GMing. I don't go around telling people they're poor GMs because they run their game on a different basis from me. I just talk about how I run my games, why I do it that way what I think some strengths are of my approach. I don't think someone's a poor...

Tuesday, 31st January, 2017

  • 04:31 PM - pemerton mentioned Hriston in post Whatever "lore" is, it isn't "rules."
    ...on but 3rd Moon is not?I don't accept the addition/change distinction. But both Imaro and Maxperson do. And they've relied upon that distinction to argue that adding new lore that fills in gaps or contradicts implications in earlier lore is not change but addition. I'm saying that, by their standards, a 3rd moon is not a change. As Hussar has pointed out, the two canonical moons are still there. There's just a third one too. No where does the canon say there is not a 3rd moon. And it's written in the voice of an in-fiction sage and astrologer - maybe that sage just wasn't aware of the 3rd moon when writing that particular treatise? Or didn't want to mention it because it's taboo, or bad luck, to do so? (This is a variation of Nagol's point not far upthread.) Having a 3rd moon doesn't contradict anything in the earlier material - the other two moons are still there, just as desdribed. And the canon never asserts that they're the only two moons. (I think this is much the same point as Hriston's not far upthread.)

Monday, 23rd January, 2017

  • 11:04 AM - pemerton mentioned Hriston in post Wall of Force Reality Check (as used by DM not players)
    Alatar, that occurence of "concealed" in the characterisation of "total cover" came up in the recent long-running Hiding thread. I think Hriston was probably right when he suggested that "concealed", in that occurrence, doesn't mean literally mean "concealed from sight" but something more like "sheltered behind the cover" because "lacking a clear path". That makes the wording infelicitous - as you note - but preserves coherence. Otherwise a character behind a gelatinous cube or glasssteel or similar - who is not concealed in the literal sense - would also not enjoy protection from attacks (because, under the mooted interpretation, not enjoying cover) which seems pretty counter-intuitive.


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Sunday, 15th July, 2018

  • 02:22 PM - Oofta quoted Hriston in post Hang Time - What if you jump farther than your speed?
    Well, we’d better come to an agreement soon. My son, who only plays computer rpg’s and refuses to play D&D, is now pointing to this issue as evidence that D&D is a “broken system”. 😉 Based on how you run the game, maybe he has a point. :hmm: Kidding aside, there's nothing wrong with how you run your games. What bothers me is that you conflate things like not continuing movement because you risk an opportunity attack with not continuing movement because the turn ends. There is no wrong way to play D&D, but there are poor debating techniques.
  • 02:16 PM - Oofta quoted Hriston in post Hang Time - What if you jump farther than your speed?
    I don’t know what you mean by “completing his entire move”. If you mean that he isn’t moving a full 60 feet, I don’t understand. There are always situations in combat where a player decides not to use every last foot of his or her character’s movement. For example: DM: The orcs look like they’re spoiling for a fight. What do you do? Player: I close the distance between us and attack. DM: Okay, they’re about 20 feet away. <Resolves attacks> Two orcs fall dead. You have 10 feet of movement left if you want to use it, but moving away will incur opportunity attacks from the remaining orcs. Player: Hey! Why are you stopping me from completing my entire move? DM: ??? You seriously don't see the difference between the two scenarios? In my scenario there's no reason from the PC's perspective to slow down or stop moving. The player is not the one choosing to stop before their full movement is done. You are deciding that they can't suspend their movement mid-air. In your sc...
  • 07:21 AM - jgsugden quoted Hriston in post Hang Time - What if you jump farther than your speed?
    Well, we’d better come to an agreement soon. My son, who only plays computer rpg’s and refuses to play D&D, is now pointing to this issue as evidence that D&D is a “broken system”. 😉Your son must be very bright. He lept to that large conclusion... and it must have taken less than 6 seconds as you can't make a leap like that that stretches beyond a round...

Saturday, 14th July, 2018

  • 05:46 PM - Oofta quoted Hriston in post Hang Time - What if you jump farther than your speed?
    Me? No, that isn’t what I do. You say I stop people, by which I assume you mean the characters, but I don’t control the players’ characters. If a player’s action declaration contains more action than can be accomplished in their turn, I delay the resolution of any extra action until the next turn. For example, the dialogue at the table might go like this: DM Hriston: The bad guy is on the other side of a 20 foot chasm and is heading for an exit at the rear of the cavern. It looks like he might get away this time. Barbarian Guy, what are you going to do this round? Barbarian Guy: I can clear that chasm. I run up to it and jump across. DM Hriston: The nearest edge of the chasm is about 50 feet away from you, so you’ll need to use your action to gain the extra movement you need to reach it, leaving you with only 10 feet of movement remaining. The chasm is 20 feet across, so jumping over it will have to wait until next round. Is that still what you want to do? Barbarian Guy: We’ve got to catch this guy, and that looks like the most direct path, so yes. DM Hriston: Okay, so you make it to the edge and you’re about to jump. Meanwhile... I don’t think you can claim a greater affinity for “story”. Our difference seems to be that while you, as you say, see the game as a story simulator, I see it as a story generator. I play to find out...

Thursday, 12th July, 2018

  • 08:48 PM - Oofta quoted Hriston in post Hang Time - What if you jump farther than your speed?
    The idea that the 15 feet is lost because it wasn't used is a bit odd to me. Just because there's an upper limit to the amount of movement you can use doesn't mean you've lost anything by not using it. Technically, you're allowed to take a bonus action every turn, but frequently there isn't one to take. No one complains in that situation that they've lost their bonus action. I'd put this in the same category. And how is it part of the story that the PC has lost 15 feet of its movement? Here people are telling me that the turn is a mechanical construct (which I agree with), but that a PC not being able to use 100% of its turn-allocated movement is a change to the story. It isn't. It's a game mechanic affecting a game mechanic. In my sample scenario it's the difference between the barbarian catching the BBEG (or at least being in close pursuit) and not catching him. I view D&D as a crude fantasy-story simulator first and game second. There's no reason for the PC to not break away fro...
  • 04:33 PM - Oofta quoted Hriston in post Hang Time - What if you jump farther than your speed?
    Again, there's no change in the story, just whether we get to that part of the story in this round or in the next round. While you may want to rule that you can't end your turn mid-air, to say that there is no change to the story is simply not true. If someone could leap the distance there are instances where they can't use their full movement, the story changes. If a PC could leap 20 feet but only have 15 foot of movement left on their turn, that 15 foot of movement is effectively lost for no reason other than the game mechanic of turns. Whether that matters to you is personal preference and style, but it does matter.
  • 02:54 PM - Pauper quoted Hriston in post Hang Time - What if you jump farther than your speed?
    Also, B doesn’t stop if B’s player decides not to use the remaining 10 feet. B’s turn ends, and B’s jump will commence and be resolved at the beginning of B’s next turn, following directly upon the run up B took at the end of B’s last turn. This is a great point. The rules do say that you can "cover a number of feet up to your Strength score if you move at least 10 feet on foot immediately before the jump." (BR, p.64, emphasis mine) Otherwise, you're presumed to be making a standing long jump and can only get half that distance. However, there is nothing explicit in the jump rule that says the 10 foot run has to be in the same round as the jump, only that the 10 foot run has to "immediately" precede the jump. So if a character ends one turn by moving at least 10 feet, it's reasonable to argue that this counts for the "immediate" 10 foot run needed to do a running long jump to start the next turn, since (as you note elsewhere) the characters don't perceive the turn order as 'I do this ...
  • 08:41 AM - jgsugden quoted Hriston in post Hang Time - What if you jump farther than your speed?
    This makes no sense to me. The whole point of the combat round is to limit how much stuff you can do with your PC. You want to do more stuff than fits into this round? It’ll have to wait until next round to be resolved. So the administrative concept of a round limits the story. That is what people are saying is a bad result. How would you like it if a movie character stopped for no story based reason in the middle of a chase? No, you’ve got my “view of the rules” wrong. B doesn’t fall if he tries to jump. That’s not what happens. What happens is the DM tells B’s player that B doesn’t have enough movement left to clear the chasm and is there anything else B would like to do with B’s remaining 10 feet of movement. Also, B doesn’t stop if B’s player decides not to use the remaining 10 feet. B’s turn ends, and B’s jump will commence and be resolved at the beginning of B’s next turn, following directly upon the run up B took at the end of B’s last turn. ...which puts him arbitrarily 10 feet bac...

Wednesday, 11th July, 2018

  • 10:02 PM - jgsugden quoted Hriston in post Hang Time - What if you jump farther than your speed?
    The PC doesn't have to wait for a round before it jumps, the player does. The combat round only pertains to the players at the table. The PC isn't aware it's happening. Which is WHY we should not limit the PCs actions by the artificial constraint of the round. The PC is unaware of it, so should not be constrained by it. Think through the story without the artificial constraints of the game and adjust accordingly. Example: PC A and B are - mid-combat - chasing a fleeing enemy. The enemy leaps across a slightly less than 20' wide chasm. A and B each move 30' on a normal move, and have a 20 strength - enough to clear the chasm on a running start under the basic rules. A is 20 feet from the chasm at the start of his turn, B is 50. A can DASH, leap over the chasm and move 60' closer to the enemy by the end of his round. B, under your view of the rules, would fall into the chasm if he tried to leap (because he can only leap 10' due to the artificial constraint of the round and his distance...

Monday, 18th June, 2018


Sunday, 17th June, 2018

  • 11:44 PM - gyor quoted Hriston in post Should Shadar Kai look old in the Shadowfell?
    It's fantasy fiction about elves, isn't it? D&D elves are very different then Tolkien elves, in a whole bunch of ways, although I admit its hugely obvious that Tolkien's influence on the D&D races was massively increased in MTOGs in alot of ways, so perhaps he did inspire the unfortunate choice to make the Shadowfell literally the last realm any Shadar Kai would ever want to set foot in and which most Shadar Kai would flee from at the first chance. Really the Shadar Kai section was the weakest section by far in the whole book, which is a shame because I like the Shadar Kai. Seriously Shadar Kai went from a bad ass Sadomachotistic race of passionate overachievers, to a race of boring, dispassionate old geezers, those only leave their eternal damnation in the Shadowfell to go on missions for the Raven Queen (the being whose fault it is they are damned to an eternity in the Shadowfell in the first place), to steal creepy momentos of memories and souls. Even the Drow feel bad for the ...
  • 11:20 PM - gyor quoted Hriston in post Should Shadar Kai look old in the Shadowfell?
    "This"? D&D 5e.
  • 10:13 PM - gyor quoted Hriston in post Should Shadar Kai look old in the Shadowfell?
    Yes, think of the elves made thralls by Morgoth in the mines of Angband. For example, Gwindor, a Noldo, was a slave in Angband for fourteen years, where the strength and beauty of his body was ruined. He also lost a hand. This isn't the Lord of the Rings.

Wednesday, 6th June, 2018

  • 12:12 PM - Cap'n Kobold quoted Hriston in post Will you make transsexual Elves canon in your games ?
    No, I mean Changelings. They can already change sex characteristics, so it seems weird to me that a lot of people are taking issue with it when it’s elves. Bear in mind that there are several different issues that people are taking with it. My major issue would be that it may be stepping on the toes of the Changeling's schtick. Hence why my first response to a player wanting to have the Blessing of Corellion would be to find out why, because there may be a better-fitting alternative to what they're after. @Lychee of the Exch., many now prefer the term transgendered, in case you didn't know. I believe that the choice of term was deliberate, specifically to distinguish elves that can switch biological sex overnight from transgendered as we would use the term. (Of a different gender than the one their phenotype has expressed.) Of course there are transgendered elves in the worlds my games are set in, just as there are transgendered dwarves, transgendered hobbits, and transgendered humans....

Thursday, 31st May, 2018

  • 03:11 AM - pemerton quoted Hriston in post Yugoloths: Do They Have an Identity Beyond the Blood War?
    Upon reviewing D3, daemons don't appear to have been used as guards or for any practical purpose whatsoever in that module. The only place I could find them in the module is on the random encounter table for the city of Erelhei-Cinlu, where they appear to be visitors. They seem to have been put there for no other reason than to reinforce the cosmopolitan character of the city, but a strained reading could tie their presence to the conflict between the city's leading houses. The houses loyal to Lolth may have a stronger connection to demons than those who have converted to the worship of the Elder Elemental God. I say this because one of the former houses (Despana) has among its magic possessions a demon staff while one of the latter houses (Tormtor) has a scroll of protection from demons. So it could be that certain daemons have been enlisted on behalf of the latter houses to counter any demonic aid that may be available to the former. It's also likely, however, that Gygax was looking for a lo...
  • 12:15 AM - BookBarbarian quoted Hriston in post MTOF: Elves are gender-swapping reincarnates and I am on board with it
    Well, I go camping for one weekend and this happens. I got a lot of stuff to reply too. How do you explain the presence of Glorfindel at Rivendell in the Third Age after he fell fighting the balrog in the First Age? Canonically? The exception that proves the rule. More accurately? Tolkien re-using elf names for different tales and the reconciling them. D&D has been doing alternatives to Tolkien Hobbits for quite a while. DRAGONLANCE - they're called "Kender", and they are... A lode stone for a-hole players. But realistically, it would be exceedingly rare for a hermaphroditic Orc who wins the mating battle to choose to be female. Oddly I could see an orc that is very concerned with having the greatest warrior spring from their loins, so much that they wish to take a more direct role in bringing life to their offspring. Core rules for the cleric class description state: ‘If a cleric is not devoted to a particular deity, he still selects two domains to represent his spir...

Monday, 28th May, 2018

  • 11:13 PM - pemerton quoted Hriston in post Yugoloths: Do They Have an Identity Beyond the Blood War?
    I'm not even sure there's Blood War going on in 4e. There is. It's the result of Asmodeus's attempt to recover the "shard of evil" from the heart of the Abyss. (See MotP, p 89.) I had a look at D3. It has a few things to say about daemons in the entries for new monsters at the end of the module. <snip> So they dislike rules and any other limitations on their ability to ruthlessly pursue their own self-interest. They sound pretty much like the embodiment of NE.This is one of the (many) cases where I can't really see the difference between NE and CE. What do bugbears, gnolls, ogres etc do? They ruthlessly pursue their own self-interest and power regardless of rules or social convention.
  • 07:46 AM - pemerton quoted Hriston in post Yugoloths: Do They Have an Identity Beyond the Blood War?
    It has been a long time since I perused D3 (I played through it once too, but I don't remember the daemons coming up), and I don't have a copy, but it might be interesting for the discussion if anyone knows off the top of their head what the daemons are doing in that adventure and what their business is in the Underdark. It might shed some light on why Gygax, et al. felt it was desirable to introduce a third group of fiends into the game. They're muscle and guards. Nothing more grandiose!I think Shroomy is right. I don't know what Gygax had in mind, but as presented in D3 mezzodaemons and nycadaemons are not distinguishable from demons: they're evil beings from other planes that the drow seem to enjoy hanging out with. In Gygax's DMG, they appear in the glossary, but are described simply as "monsters" (the glossary entry explains that you can ignore them if you don't have D3); in the descriptions for Iron Flasks; in the rules for holy water and for turning undead; in the rules for aerial ...

Sunday, 27th May, 2018

  • 02:23 AM - Shroomy quoted Hriston in post Yugoloths: Do They Have an Identity Beyond the Blood War?
    It has been a long time since I perused D3 (I played through it once too, but I don't remember the daemons coming up), and I don't have a copy, but it might be interesting for the discussion if anyone knows off the top of their head what the daemons are doing in that adventure and what their business is in the Underdark. It might shed some light on why Gygax, et al. felt it was desirable to introduce a third group of fiends into the game. They're muscle and guards. Nothing more grandiose!

Saturday, 26th May, 2018



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Timelord
This PC class is derived but differs substantially from Lewis Pulsipher’s Timelord NPC class published in Dragon #65 in September, 1982. I undertook the conversion for personal use, but am sharing it because I’ve seen some interest on EN World for a ...
154 0 1 Saturday, 5th May, 2018, 11:58 PM Monday, 9th July, 2018, 11:30 PM
Weapon Attack Adjustments Table (Converted from AD&D, First Edition)
This is the revision of the table I posted some time ago. I rethought my approach and rebuilt the table from the ground up. The values are now very close to Gygax's values, modified only in proportion to the AC benefit of particular armor types. The ...
667 0 3 Sunday, 13th December, 2015, 07:11 AM Sunday, 13th December, 2015, 07:11 AM
Chainmail/AD&D First Edition Rate of Fire Rules for D&D Fifth Edition
Here's my homebrew conversion of the rates of fire given for different ranged attacks in Chainmail and AD&D First Edition. I'm posting it here not so much because I expect anyone to want to use it in their games, but because I'd like any feedback any...
175 0 1 Monday, 7th September, 2015, 07:37 AM Saturday, 12th May, 2018, 06:07 AM

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