View Profile: Elfcrusher - Morrus' Unofficial Tabletop RPG News
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Today, 02:23 PM
    Ah, right! Forgot about that. Good. Nice to have an actual rule to support the most sensible interpretation.
    3 replies | 70 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Today, 01:57 PM
    Elfcrusher started a thread Prone and Grappled
    How to interpret this? If a creature is grappled its movement is zero. If it is prone it must use half it's movement to stand up. If it is both prone and grappled, does it have to break the grapple to stand up? "Yes" interpretation: until it breaks the grapple it doesn't have any movement to spend on standing up.
    3 replies | 70 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Today, 01:14 PM
    Are you defining "player agency" to mean that player actions can affect/change outcomes? If so, I think you're describing the inverse of railroading, but railroading and player agency are not antonyms. I would define player agency to mean that the player is in full control of their character, not that said control is able to achieve certain outcomes. Or maybe I'm not understanding your...
    56 replies | 1842 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Saturday, 15th June, 2019, 01:04 PM
    Here in the U.S. we still use standards, not metrics.
    56 replies | 1842 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Saturday, 15th June, 2019, 03:43 AM
    I'm wary of the word "ratings" (even though I started using it instead of "metric") because I feel like there's an implicit "higher is better" assumption, and what I want to know is where games lie on various spectra. I'm really not trying to figure out if a game is good, I want to know what it's lik, in a searchable/filterable way. (That is, without spending countless hours combing through...
    56 replies | 1842 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Saturday, 15th June, 2019, 03:36 AM
    Well, since this has been necro'd... I would have given elves a kind of "keen vision", that treats dim light as bright light so that they wouldn't have disadvantage on Perception checks relying on sight in dim light. (And maybe doubles range, but that comes up very, very rarely.) They're used to running around at night and in dark forests, or at least their ancestors were, but they don't live...
    205 replies | 7767 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Friday, 14th June, 2019, 08:37 PM
    Metagame-Ethics: How can I exploit the alignment system out-of-character to win the game?
    350 replies | 10569 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Friday, 14th June, 2019, 06:54 PM
    I thought of a (subjective) rating I'd like: how easy it is to mix new and veteran characters on the same adventure. I think that says a lot about game design. In my search panel I'd like to be able to filter for games where "low level characters can meaningfully contribute to adventures with high level characters." EDIT: And others might prefer the opposite; they might specifically want...
    56 replies | 1842 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Friday, 14th June, 2019, 03:49 PM
    One thing I really appreciate in games is the extent to which they support/tolerate mixed levels.
    350 replies | 10569 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Friday, 14th June, 2019, 04:57 AM
    Wait...D&D is middle ages? I must have missed that memo.
    298 replies | 7698 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Friday, 14th June, 2019, 03:45 AM
    Iím not choosing sides, but that seems to be an invitation to let you have the last word, and Iím guessing thatís not gonna happen...
    350 replies | 10569 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 09:46 PM
    I would be surprised if there's anything formal on paper (at least that's discoverable.) But I would be equally surprised if drill sergeants during time of warfare were not unofficially encouraged to refer to the enemy in dehumanizing terms. Not because I think poorly of the military, or the people in it, but because it makes sense to do so, and organizations take on a life of their own. ...
    350 replies | 10569 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 09:39 PM
    How are you doing it on 4x6? I was printing out the entire pages, and then throwing away most of it. Is there a simple and elegant way to move/combine the images to maximize layout efficiency? P.S. I've been using pennies for the bases. Perfect size*, nice weight, good price. *Because I'm not using the larger base.
    70 replies | 6184 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 07:14 PM
    My original source was my grandfather, describing his training for WWII. However, this is the first thing that popped up for me on Google: https://www.sfgate.com/science/article/THE-SCIENCE-OF-CREATING-KILLERS-Human-2514123.php. (EDIT: I just realized you only quoted the second half of my post. No, it doesn't mention the derogatory slurs thing. I'll go look for that. EDIT2: Nope, first page of...
    350 replies | 10569 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 06:18 PM
    I thought it was the other way around: the military puts a whole lotta effort into un-conditioning new recruits, so that they won't be all conflicted about it when the moment comes. And that this is why the military actively promotes derogatory slurs for people of whatever state they happen to be fighting. To de-humanize the enemy.
    350 replies | 10569 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 06:16 PM
    Oh, yeah, I meant the 2e KS. My bad.
    93 replies | 4424 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 12:36 PM
    5th edition. What I love is that it replaced 4th edition...
    68 replies | 2197 view(s)
    4 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 04:55 AM
    Bear in mind I didn't (as the title of the thread says) actually play it, and I had to go get it off the shelf and page through it to remember what the turn-offs were. In a nutshell it felt like you couldn't play the game without having a pretty thorough understanding of the setting, but the setting itself required too much work to grok. I paged through it and there's a bewildering array of...
    93 replies | 4424 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 02:56 AM
    The One Ring 1) Very flat power curve. There are no levels, but veteran characters arenít significantly (by RPG standards) more powerful than newly created characters. And yet there are lots of incremental rewards along the way. 2) The core dice mechanic is simple but powerful and flexible, with interesting math. 3) The rules were written from the ground up to evoke Middle-earth, and...
    22 replies | 1196 view(s)
    7 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 12th June, 2019, 09:41 PM
    ??? Me either. Was somebody in this thread suggesting there's a connection? Makes me wonder if you actually understand the arguments in this thread, or in that other one that shall not be named. Or if maybe you just fear others making such a connection (e.g., the "violent video games cause violent crime" canard) so you're unwilling to entertain some possibilities.
    350 replies | 10569 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 12th June, 2019, 08:42 PM
    Now that might be true.
    56 replies | 1842 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 12th June, 2019, 08:24 PM
    Faulkner's "The Unvanquished" is really about exactly this question.
    350 replies | 10569 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 12th June, 2019, 08:22 PM
    Again, though, I'm not looking for an objective metric. 10 software engineers with sufficient experience and knowledge would be likely to give a given piece of source code a somewhat similar rating for compactness and elegance. Exactly the same value? No. But in the same ballpark. Likewise, if 15 reviewers give Chargen Complexity an average of 1.7 out of 5, that's good enough for me. ...
    56 replies | 1842 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 12th June, 2019, 08:15 PM
    That's quite a leap, and not even a remotely accurate conclusion. I asked the question whether rating games on their similarity (on various dimensions) to existing games would be a useful thing. I didn't say that I'm looking for new games that are like existing ones. In fact, in some cases knowing that new game X is really far away from existing game Y, on nearly all dimensions, would be a...
    56 replies | 1842 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 12th June, 2019, 08:08 PM
    You have a point: an ethical dilemma is an ethical dilemma even if it is entirely imaginary. But when you discuss the trolley car problem in freshman philosophy you are, I assume, trying to imagine that there are real lives at stake, and that it would be a tragedy for them to be lost. In other words, you are analyzing the problem as if it were real. I don't think you would answer the trolley car...
    350 replies | 10569 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 12th June, 2019, 02:29 PM
    I know you said "might", but...Dungeon World? Sure, some weapons have stats, but there's no list. And definitely no prices. You do damage based on your class, regardless of how you decide to describe your weapon. Dual-wielding rolling pins? Same damage. That's the kind of thing I'd like to know about in evaluating a game. Again, maybe the solution is not to quantify things, but...
    56 replies | 1842 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 12th June, 2019, 02:21 PM
    This seems to contradict your other claims. If it's all just make-believe and it's all ok, then there's no moral dilemma. Now, there may be in-game consequences: if you kill the innocents your god will strip you of your powers, or whatever. And maybe that's what you mean. Make-believe violence, and make-believe moral dilemma. On a somewhat related note, I've never found any attraction to...
    350 replies | 10569 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 12th June, 2019, 01:00 PM
    So is there no violence in games that (for you) crosses the threshold into "not okay", even though it still isn't real? There is for me.
    350 replies | 10569 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 12th June, 2019, 06:31 AM
    See, I actually think that "rulings" are...or can be...a good thing, and it's one of the things I'd like to know about a game. To what extent do the rules attempt to specify outcomes for every scenario, versus how much is left to interpretation? You can have clear writing that leaves some questions open, if that's the intent.
    56 replies | 1842 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 12th June, 2019, 06:22 AM
    I, for one, find some RPG killing unsettling/disturbing: - Torturing captives - Killing captives - Killing non-combatants/innocents - Sometimes even unnecessarily attacking intelligent humanoids Why "humanoids" on the last one? I dunno. Mind flayers, for example, aren't covered by this policy. I don't have a policy...I'm must describing what bothers me. In one game (it was The...
    350 replies | 10569 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 12th June, 2019, 03:20 AM
    HERETIC!!! Ok, so I never actually played it, either. But it was one of the few treasured tomes I kept when I thought I was quitting RPGs (ha!) and gave away almost my whole library.
    93 replies | 4424 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th June, 2019, 10:35 PM
    Right. You think that potentially triggering a rape survivor's PSTD is not as bad as telling somebody that he can't run games at public conventions anymore. That pretty much clarifies just how 'concerned' you really are. Really, I don't think anything more needs to be said after that, but here goes... Nobody is asking to structure "everything in this world" around that possibility. ...
    419 replies | 18077 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th June, 2019, 10:23 PM
    7th Sea Modiphius Conan
    93 replies | 4424 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th June, 2019, 10:14 PM
    Ok, let's unpack this: why are you "very concerned" about "real world rape"? I'm hoping it's because you recognize that it's traumatizing. One of the most traumatizing things that can happen to a person. So...assuming you're still with me here...how do you think it affects a survivor when they are immersed in a roleplaying game and not only is their character raped (whether on or...
    419 replies | 18077 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th June, 2019, 09:37 PM
    Funny...but possible character permutations is on the right track of...something. At least, I would find that an interesting number. Better yet, a tree-like diagram showing the permutations. The shape of the tree would actually tell you a lot about the game. Are choices front-loaded, or do they appear evenly over many levels? Are choices restricted based on early decisions, or is it (yet...
    56 replies | 1842 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th June, 2019, 09:34 PM
    Mmm, I don't really care about...or at least I wasn't referring to...organization, clarity of writing, index. I've backed games on Kickstarter because the description was awesome, or the genre is something that appeals to me, or maybe just because the artwork was great. Then I get the game and I think, "Ugh...this reminds me of (insert game I hate)." And it's not about production quality,...
    56 replies | 1842 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th June, 2019, 09:32 PM
    I probably shouldn't have used the word "metric" because it suggests something objective, whereas I'm imagining a value that's subjective, and/or maybe an aggregate/consensus value. But I do think think there are things that can be evaluated this way, such as the examples I gave. Or maybe it's sort of a correspondence analysis, where you would say the game in question has these features...
    56 replies | 1842 view(s)
    3 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th June, 2019, 03:58 PM
    In before "Salem witch trials!"
    419 replies | 18077 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th June, 2019, 03:11 PM
    When an interesting sounding RPG comes along, I struggle to get a sense of what the rules are like. Reading reviews I get a good sense for the genre and mood, but what I really want to know is where the rules are in terms of complexity and...well, I'm not really sure what the axes are. I think about the differences between (to grab a few random examples) systems like Dungeon World, various...
    56 replies | 1842 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th June, 2019, 03:00 PM
    That's another sub-text from some of these people: "If people are feeling unwelcome/uncomfortable about being in the gaming community because of bad behavior, and they decide not to participate, that's too bad but it's their choice. They could just tough it out if they really cared. But to ban the people who are driving them away is taking away their rights." Sorry, but given the choice...
    419 replies | 18077 view(s)
    4 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th June, 2019, 02:41 PM
    But you are also, sometimes subtly, downplaying the incident. It wasn't "in game rape". It was advertised for 'mature' audiences. The GM was just "clueless". Etc. I/we may be misinterpreting your point, but it's easy to read this as "Oh, it's just make-believe rape. What's the matter? Can't take a joke?"
    419 replies | 18077 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th June, 2019, 01:34 PM
    Oh, well in that case we should just excuse the whole thing. Wait...what century is this? Oh, my bad, I was so fully immersed in my latest gaming session that I thought we were in the dark ages.
    419 replies | 18077 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Monday, 10th June, 2019, 02:22 AM
    What if the DM was being mind-controlled by an insidious yet unnamed regime for the purposes of sowing dissent for political reasons? Or what if the the DM wasnít who we think it was, but his hitherto unknown evil twin, trying to discredit his brother as part of a scheme to inherit all of their mysterious fatherís wealth? I mean, really, ALL possibilities should be fully investigated before...
    419 replies | 18077 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th June, 2019, 03:52 PM
    Suicide Kings That said, D&D is not WoW. I caveat most of my opinions here with "...but this is just the way I play; you do you." However, if you are having "bitter loot disputes" I would posit that you are, in fact, doing D&D wrong.
    14 replies | 489 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th June, 2019, 05:28 AM
    Just what we need: even more rogues using rapiers. I have a better idea: your sneak attack damage die is equal to 12 minus your weapon die. So rapiers get d4's, short swords get d6's, and daggers get d8's. There we go.
    36 replies | 1323 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    14 replies | 916 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th June, 2019, 03:20 AM
    Maybe the same reason competitive rock climbing is so terrible: some things just can't be formalized with strict rules.
    26 replies | 1145 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Saturday, 8th June, 2019, 05:46 AM
    The guy already has two strikes: 1) Running that moronic scenario. 2) Trying to weasel out of any responsibility.
    419 replies | 18077 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Saturday, 8th June, 2019, 03:07 AM
    This is cool. Interesting answers.
    20 replies | 720 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Friday, 7th June, 2019, 04:07 AM
    Elfcrusher replied to Tortles
    Melee Druid
    9 replies | 426 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Thursday, 6th June, 2019, 02:35 PM
    Yeah. I find the story...or at least the version of the story which seems most corroborated and probable...pretty disgusting and kind of unbelievable that anybody could still be that ignorant/clueless. But the correct response is not to destroy his life. It will be better for him if he has a chance to learn/atone/improve, and better for everybody else if he doesn't become a martyr for the...
    419 replies | 18077 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Thursday, 6th June, 2019, 05:55 AM
    I've been mutated. It's how I got my superpowers. Just sayin'.
    419 replies | 18077 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Thursday, 6th June, 2019, 05:50 AM
    There seems to be an assumption underlying this post...forgive me if I'm wrong...that somehow complex/crunchy games require a more sophisticated palette to be appreciated, and that players can be "trained" to be sophisticated enough to appreciate them. If so, I don't really think that's the case. In my gaming group are people who, like myself, have been playing various RPGs for decades, and...
    54 replies | 2175 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Thursday, 6th June, 2019, 04:29 AM
    Elfcrusher started a thread Pick one game...
    Imagine you get to join a campaign with an awesome GM with tons of experience in the game system being used. Like, maybe the author of the game. (Assuming, for the sake of argument, that said author is also a great GM, which isn't necessarily the case.) What's one game you've never actually played, but that you've always wanted to play, that you'd pick to do this? My pick: Trudvang...
    20 replies | 720 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Thursday, 6th June, 2019, 04:10 AM
    Yeah, and GURPS.
    245 replies | 10643 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Thursday, 6th June, 2019, 03:54 AM
    I DMíd with paper minis this week for the first time and loved them. Printed at FedEx on 100# glossy for about a buck a page. Awesome.
    70 replies | 6184 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 07:02 PM
    Fixed! Thank you! This is pretty much the main reason I want to try it.
    10 replies | 497 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 05:50 PM
    While true, the part I find disappointing (and I suspect is behind others' disappointment) is that it's basically a weapon attack re-skinned as magic. For that reason I find cantrips that require a save just a bit more interesting (even though monsters pretty much never seem to fail Dex saves versus Sacred Flame.) Which, again, is the reason I was comparing it to martial "powers". I just...
    245 replies | 10643 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 05:43 PM
    And they generally ignore the opportunity costs of doing so (e.g., higher level abilities you don't get when multiclassing). I mean, their entire focus is on dpr or nova or whatever, so I guess it achieves its goal. But how do you quantify the value of, say, giving everybody within 30' a +5 on all saving throws, which you can easily miss out on when you start MCing your Paladin?
    42 replies | 1726 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 05:38 PM
    For context, here's what this same person posted in the thread about the DM who got banned from a Con for running an adventure where the teenage PCs get drugged and gang raped:
    33 replies | 1331 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 05:33 PM
    I think this mostly applies to ranged rogues who can't hide. Melee rogues generally/usually already get sneak attack, and if they miss they can try again with their offhand (which is sorta like having advantage, in terms of hit probability). Assuming a similar attack bonus, though, a GWM has a much lower chance to hit because of the -5. The crossover point would depend on the AC of the target....
    10 replies | 497 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 04:01 PM
    So who benefits most from advantage? Sharpshooter/GWM?
    10 replies | 497 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 03:05 PM
    I would think that we could get general agreement that there's a difference between playing a game where dice rolls represent "killing things" with swords...and going into the details of torture, dismemberment, rape, slaughter of civilians, etc. And that when the GM plans to cross the (admittedly blurry) line into those things, it would be a good idea to make sure that everybody at the table is...
    419 replies | 18077 view(s)
    6 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 02:51 PM
    No, I remember that part. What I can't remember is whether a wizard throwing a dart had the same disappointed/bored tone I hear today when they say, "I guess I'll use Fire Bolt." What I would guess is that because a 1st level wizard were so freaking likely to die in a single roll is that they were swinging that staff thinking, "Oh god please hit oh god please hit oh god please hit...."
    245 replies | 10643 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 02:49 PM
    I had this thought in another thread (the one about "max sustained dpr") but didn't want to derail it. D&D is (usually) a game of cooperation between multiple characters, so I always find those discussions about optimum builds of a single character kind of odd. An interesting intellectual exercise for some, but not terribly...useful?...in the greater game. A more interesting question, at...
    10 replies | 497 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 02:16 PM
    I don't have the book on me. Maybe it's mentioned as a solution just in case the players have access to it. Doesn't necessarily mean it's provided in the book. I didn't take Ghosts of Saltmarsh to be a structured campaign in the way some of the adventure paths are. Rather it's a collection of adventures of varying levels that are unified by location and theme. The existence of assorted...
    17 replies | 1011 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 01:40 PM
    Maybe it's because I never played casters but I honestly can't remember; however I think I agree with @TwoSix who said that back then it was all exciting.
    245 replies | 10643 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 12:59 PM
    Now THERE'S an example of how nostalgia wears rose-colored glasses: I read the above and couldn't help but smile fondly at the memories, even though you're right about the effects.
    245 replies | 10643 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 08:11 AM
    Actually, even though you said that jokingly, it's still the same sort of thing, but in reverse: if "powers" are like giving spells to fighters, damage cantrips are like giving weapon attacks to casters. That's why I don't like them. And it seems like a lot of other people don't like them as well: I can't tell you how many times I've heard the player of a spellcaster say, "Well, I guess I'll...
    245 replies | 10643 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 04:47 AM
    Can you re-ask this question? Did you skip what? Is what a solution to what?
    17 replies | 1011 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 04:45 AM
    No, you should play The One Ring. ... Well, YOU ASKED.
    245 replies | 10643 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 12:10 AM
    Does a ďnot okĒ reduce the count by 1?
    33 replies | 1331 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Tuesday, 4th June, 2019, 02:43 PM
    That could also be the name of your signature martial arts move! Maybe it counts as a grapple.
    42 replies | 1726 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Monday, 3rd June, 2019, 03:35 PM
    There's a "right" kind of group? That's almost...more disturbing.
    419 replies | 18077 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Thursday, 30th May, 2019, 03:48 PM
    This rocks! I haven't printed it yet, but I downloaded it and easily broke my image up into a paginated PDF. It takes some guesswork to get the scaling right, but the final result doesn't have to be exactly 1" squares. Thank you!
    6 replies | 416 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 29th May, 2019, 06:57 PM
    I think that's a workable definition, even if we could find edge cases where it doesn't work. For example, I would not consider "the heroes learn about the ship signaling system" as the sort of outcome we mean by this.
    68 replies | 3573 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 29th May, 2019, 05:11 PM
    Fair point. ...AND I think thereís a difference between denigrating someoneís playstyle and calling them out for rhetorical tricks. But I could be gentler in doing so.
    664 replies | 26805 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 29th May, 2019, 03:03 PM
    I think you missed my point. The poster in question seems like a DM I wouldn't enjoy. It's not the specific action he describes that's a problem, it's the attitude behind it. My advice is to not try to categorize/define certain behaviors, because there can *always* be a different motivation behind those behaviors. (Again, just like with "metagaming".) So, the response to him should have,...
    68 replies | 3573 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 29th May, 2019, 02:51 PM
    What if he does it just because he thinks it makes for an interesting plot twist? If the DM is the kind who likes to "punish" his players then that's a problem, but (as with metagaming) it's easier to stop playing with people who aren't fun than it is to try to prescribe/proscribe certain actions that we think correlate to certain motivations.
    68 replies | 3573 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 29th May, 2019, 02:46 PM
    "...and also roll a saving throw against that fireball for your equipment. Oh, right! You are carrying a small keg of gunpowder, aren't you....?"
    664 replies | 26805 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 29th May, 2019, 02:28 PM
    Some folks clearly have a much stricter definition of railroading than I do. Before you can call it a railroad the players have to be aware of, and actively refuse, the plot hook. If the players burn down the house, destroying clues that lead to the next part of the adventure, and the DM introduces another pathway to learning about the ship, he still hasn't forced them to actually go to the...
    68 replies | 3573 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 29th May, 2019, 02:10 PM
    And that's the irony, right? The house is supposedly haunted, but then the heroes discover that it's just smugglers pretending it's haunted...but then they discover that it really is haunted! Although, if I were writing the adventure, instead of having the climax after the discovery of the undead, I'd set it up more like a Conan story, where the supernatural denouement happens during the...
    14 replies | 1252 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 29th May, 2019, 02:04 PM
    He's just making a parade-of-horribles argument. Whenever proponents of his style shift from "I just like it this way" to "the other way is wrong", the only way to defend that position as some kind of objective truth is by giving examples of what could theoretically happen in an extreme case.
    664 replies | 26805 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 29th May, 2019, 01:59 PM
    That's fine, but do you have to insult people who play a different way? Can't you just say, "I like to play this way, and like to play with people who share the same preference?" Why do others have to be "unskilled" and "immature"?
    664 replies | 26805 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Wednesday, 29th May, 2019, 03:13 AM
    One problem I have with all of this is that you are taking a personal preference...that not only you but also the people at your table strive to separate character knowledge from player knowledge...and then you start assigning value labels to that. Those who do that have "respect of the DM and fellow players". Those who don't are "unskilled and/or immature TPRGers". As it happens, I've...
    664 replies | 26805 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Tuesday, 28th May, 2019, 09:25 PM
    No, I was just referring to the fact that you called Int 8 "dumb" and Cha 8 "socially inept". Mathematically that should be "5% less smart than average" and "5% less charismatic than average". Or, to put it another way, would you call Int 12 "smart" and Cha 12 "socially adept"? I think most people view 12's as "a bit above average, but nothing to write home about". So shouldn't an 8 be the...
    664 replies | 26805 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Tuesday, 28th May, 2019, 08:13 PM
    I wasn't referring just to you. Your post just brought this recurring pattern to mind. So, no, I wasn't saying that "you said" anything specific.
    664 replies | 26805 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Tuesday, 28th May, 2019, 05:20 PM
    How come there's no insistence that an 8 Str means that a character can barely stand? Lots of casters dump Str, but nobody seems to insist that this be portrayed a certain way. They take their -1 penalty on Str checks, and have to watch their carrying capacity, and that's about it. But somehow 8 Int means drooling moron, and 8 Cha means either pathological introversion, or that you can't open...
    664 replies | 26805 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Elfcrusher's Avatar
    Monday, 27th May, 2019, 11:38 PM
    I might add something like mysterious creaking or footsteps, and then when the attic is explored they find a rope that runs from a weathervane to a device that makes the noises. Just to drive the point home that not only is the house not haunted but clearly somebody wants it to appear so. The one thing I'd like to figure out is to give them a feeling of having found the trap door through...
    14 replies | 1252 view(s)
    1 XP
No More Results
About Elfcrusher

Basic Information

About Elfcrusher
Introduction:
RPGT: Roleplaying Game Theorist
Location:
Boston
Disable sharing sidebar?:
No
My Game Details

Details of games currently playing and games being sought.

Town:
Online

Statistics


Total Posts
Total Posts
4,163
Posts Per Day
3.03
Last Post
Prone and Grappled Today 02:23 PM

Currency

Gold Pieces
60
General Information
Last Activity
Today 03:56 PM
Join Date
Thursday, 17th September, 2015
Product Reviews & Ratings
Reviews Written
0
My Game Details
Town:
Online
Page 1 of 5 12345 LastLast

Monday, 24th June, 2019


Thursday, 20th June, 2019


Wednesday, 19th June, 2019


Tuesday, 18th June, 2019


Monday, 17th June, 2019


Sunday, 16th June, 2019


Saturday, 15th June, 2019


Friday, 14th June, 2019



Page 1 of 5 12345 LastLast
Page 1 of 9 123456789 LastLast

Friday, 14th June, 2019

  • 04:55 AM - pemerton mentioned Elfcrusher in post What would be some good metics to evaluate RPG rules/systems?
    ...o rulings or interpretations are called for, everyone who reads the rules can play the game without confusion or argument over what the rules mean. But, when a player decides his character will hit someone with a folding chair, or try to buy a gun, the GM will either deny him, or add to the game.This post makes many assumptions about how a game might work. Many games don't require "adding to the game" (eg by way of new subsystems, or new modifiers, or whatever) because they have resolution systems that are relatively straightforward to extrapolate to novel situations. I appreciate that D&D, historically, has not been such a system - it emphasises particular subsystems rather than general resolution - and many other games are similar in this respect. But that's not the only design path. (Thinking of some early post-D&D games, Classic Traveller is sub-system based, but Tunnels & Trolls mostly isn't.) And I think it's quite misleading - as in, for instance, won't give someone like Elfcrusher the information being looked for about a new game - just to say that a universal or extrapolation-based resolution system is just like a sub-system based game but "more detailed".

Thursday, 6th June, 2019

  • 03:36 AM - Greg K mentioned Elfcrusher in post Should I play 4e?
    I liked several things about D&D 4e. However, when I look at it, the following always crosses my mind: 1. I don't like Paragon Paths and Epic Destinies so I know that I will never run or play those levels. 2. Things that I want are spread out across too many books and Dragon Magazine 3. Too many specific names on feats and powers (e.g. the deity named feats). Trying to rename feats and powers or changing power descriptions to fit my campaign setting is going to be a reference nightmare for my players. 4. When I look at the power system, I think to myself, "Hero System does powers better so why not just use Fantasy Hero 4e or 5e?" (which is why I laughed when Azzy told Elfcrusher that he would not like Hero System). However, to the OP, if it looks interesting to you, give it a try.

Monday, 6th May, 2019

  • 07:28 PM - Oofta mentioned Elfcrusher in post If an NPC is telling the truth, what's the Insight DC to know they're telling the truth?
    Elfcrusher, I'm with 5ekyu on this. I don't place traps randomly. I don't use them very often and when I do it's in fairly obvious locations an situations. As I've stated before, when I do I rely heavily on passive checks. I've never had a 5E game devolve into checking for traps every 5 ft. Has anyone on this thread ever claimed they were in a game where that happened? Because it seems to be a strawman.

Thursday, 2nd May, 2019

  • 05:23 AM - pemerton mentioned Elfcrusher in post What does it mean to "Challenge the Character"?
    ...ers are defined by much more than their race and class. Theyíre individuals with their own stories, interests, connections, and capabilities beyond those that class and race define." There are sidebar examples throughout the PDF of two characters (Tika and Artemis) who are distinguiished - as those sidebars emphasise - on the basis of non-mechanical details of the fiction. That seems an invitation to players to make up similar stuff for their PCs. Deciding on Ideals and Bonds seems also to invite the player to make up people and places that their PCs care about and are connected to. In the context of this thread, I think that Hussar has made it fairly clear that one reason he doesn't like the "goal and approach" method of action resolution is that it privileges the GM's conception of key aspects of the ficiton over possibly differing conceptions held by the players. Others obviously disagree, taking the view that exercising such authority is the prerogative of the GM. But upthread, Elfcrusher gave an example of a player authoring shared fiction invovling the stories told to a young PC by trial elders. I don't think many posters regarded this as a usurpation of the GM's authority. The general response to my post seems to be that the player deciding that the gate guard is her/his PC's childhood friend Frances is a usurpation of the GM's authority. But in some other recent threads I've seen criticisms of a GM narrating failure as some sort of oversight or carelessness on the part of the PC as a usurpation by the GM of the player's authority over deciding what his/her PC does, thinks and feels. Likewise there's a widespread view that it would be usurpation for a GM to decide that a PC didn't do what the player has said s/he does, because the GM thinks it is inconsistent with the PC's stats. These boundaries aren't crystal clear to me, and I'm a pretty experienced RPGer. I don't find them clearly articulated in the 5e Basic PDF. I'm sure I could get by in iserith's game playi...

Wednesday, 1st May, 2019

  • 03:42 AM - Eubani mentioned Elfcrusher in post A Few Balance Changes I'm Considering
    I was hoping this thread would be about archery. Just for you Elfcrusher I change abilities that ignore cover bonuses to reduce AC by 2. This gives them some benefit whilst making cover still desirable. I have been thinking about but yet to make the leap of bringing Archery fighting style in line with duelling and other styles by making it +2 damage instead of to hit. Useful but not overriding the usefulness of everything else.
  • 03:22 AM - Hussar mentioned Elfcrusher in post If an NPC is telling the truth, what's the Insight DC to know they're telling the truth?
    Y'know, I have to apologize for the "talkie talkie" thing. I thought it was funny and cute, totally not meant as a shot or anything like that. I see that it has very much taken on a life of its own, and that's totally my bad. Sorry about that. When I say, talky talky or talky bits, I'm simply meaning those parts of the game that revolve around the social pillar. As opposed to the hacky bits or looky bits. :p Yeah, humour is always tough. But, honestly Elfcrusher, I've never seen this as you folks needing to defend anything. iserith is 100% right in saying that this is what the 5e books expect. It is right there in black and white. I can't really argue with that. My point has always been that anyone, like me or Oofta, saying that we have a way that works better for us is immediately dogpiled on as coming from dysfunctional tables or not understanding other approaches or whatever.

Tuesday, 30th April, 2019

  • 04:38 PM - Oofta mentioned Elfcrusher in post What does it mean to "Challenge the Character"?
    Elfcrusher, can you define your "alternative method" for a low charisma character achieving a social goal. Because when we ask for examples it's "use the key to open the locked door". Well, duh. Of course you can bypass a locked door by using a key. You can smash it down if you don't mind the noise and the fact that you're breaking the door. But it's the same as bypassing a trap. Want to open a trapped chest? You either have to use a skill or find the instructions on how to bypass the trap in my campaign. If you're trying to get past a trapped door and can just bypass it by going around, why wouldn't you? So for social encounters what are your options. Bribery? Blackmail? The former may not work or you may have insufficient items of value, the latter is assuming you have a "key" (aka "dirt") and are willing to use it*. It also assumes that you do either of those without insulting the NPC. In other words in my campaign you could try those but best it would do would be to give you a...
  • 05:57 AM - pemerton mentioned Elfcrusher in post What does it mean to "Challenge the Character"?
    I'm not sure what you're commenting on or asking, if you're asking anything at all.Fair enough. I'm commenting on the apparent need, in the action resolution scenarios being discussed in this thread, for very clear boundaries in respect of who has authority over what bits of the fiction. And adding that notions of "trusting the GM" - which were invoked by another poster - seem to be irrelevant to the context in which they were invoked. For what it's worth, the "literature" (for lack of a better term) on RPG design has discussed this issue of boundaries at some length, but not normally in the context of presenting D&D rules. To the extent that D&D rules and discussion of them articulate the issue at all, it tends to use very informal notions that mix at-the-table and in-the-fiction notions, like the player has authority over the character and the GM has authority over everything else in the gameworld. In Elfcrusher's examples, it's clear that the player is allowed not only to state that Gord the Barbarian believes, but that Gord the Barbarian knows, that the tribal elders told such-and-such tales. Whereas it's equally clear that Gord the Barbarian may believe that a certain approach to disarming a trap could not go wrong, but that only the GM is allowed to decide whether or not this belief is true. Maybe you disagree that clear boundaries of the sort I describe are needed. Or maybe you agree, but think that they are quite clear and hence this need won't cause any issues in play. My own view is that a lot of the disagreement in this thread seems to be turning on differences of opinion and experience over whether those boundaries are (i) clear, and (ii) drawn in the right place to deliver a fun play experience. Methinks your requirement of "clear boundaries" indicates a lack of trust in other players/DMs.No. It indicates that if I'm going to fit in properly at youe table, it would be hellpfu...

Monday, 29th April, 2019

  • 06:13 AM - 5ekyu mentioned Elfcrusher in post What does it mean to "Challenge the Character"?
    Elfcrusher said "Maybe that also happens, but some have argued pretty explicitly that they think the adjudication of anything important should fall to the dice using ability/skill mechanics, and that no cleverness on the part of the player should alter the probabilities. That, for example, "I disarm the trap" with no description should have exactly the same odds of disarming the trap as proposing a clever and logical way of doing so." It would be nice to have cites for this claim. However, so far I dont think I have seen this on the challenge the character side. I am pretty sure many or most have at one point of another explicitly said that either advantage or disadvantage can come from the choices made by the player. Do you have examples from this thread? Or is this one of those pretending extremes?
  • 05:44 AM - Celebrim mentioned Elfcrusher in post What does it mean to "Challenge the Character"?
    Elfcrusher: After 30+ years of GMing, I've discovered that if you are worried about the players metagaming, it's almost certainly the case that the fault is with you, and that then instructing the players to not metagame is simply digging your own hole deeper. The only time metagaming is poor play is when it is a symptom of some other sort of poor play (such as cheating by buying a copy of the module you are playing). Otherwise, you should really not even try to identify metagaming, much less assert GM force to prevent it.

Sunday, 28th April, 2019

  • 01:52 AM - pemerton mentioned Elfcrusher in post What does it mean to "Challenge the Character"?
    ...e Raven Queen story - their character does. The second is it seems an example of my #4 - both are required (if I read it tight) because specific language skills in character *and* a riddle answered in player are required. Riddles do not have to be player only, no argument there. They just fo seem to be that way quite often.I think at my table they're probably closer to your 1 (? I'm not sure I'm remembering your categories correctly), in the sense that there is not going to be any check made. At the table, the discussion is all between the players, playing their characters - so eg in the second you see the player of the paladin declining to take part because he's not interested in debating "good" ideals; and in the first, he is the one who is most excited about being in the Mausoleum of the Raven Queen, and so it's not a coincidence (although also not guaranteed) that he is the one who works it out first. I don't know 100% how this fits into your conception, or Hussar's, or Elfcrusher's - I would say it is challenging the player's ability to inhabit and play as his/her character. And of course it takes for granted that the player is immersed in the fiction of the campaign (riddle 3) or its moral logic (riddle 2). I think the first riddle - the one I can't remember - was probably weakest in this repsect because it didn't draw enough on that immersion.

Saturday, 27th April, 2019

  • 12:42 PM - DM Dave1 mentioned Elfcrusher in post If an NPC is telling the truth, what's the Insight DC to know they're telling the truth?
    Because it's frequently not apparent. Consider this: a pit appears bottomless, but is actually an illusion - it's really on 3 feet deep. What do you do, tell them the truth: "if you fail this roll nothing bad will happen", blatantly lie to them "you will fall to your death", or tell them nothing, thus letting them know there is something fishy about the pit, because you normally tell them what will happen? @Elfcrusher already answered this before your post: Now, you don't have to give away every nuance of the consequence. "Sure, you can try to chop the door down, but it's going to make a lot of noise. Are you sure...?" But they don't have to know exactly what sort of creature is going to be alerted. "If you fail, you fall into the pit". No more detail necessary. The players can be terrified until they make it across safely and then perhaps laugh at the clumsy wizard who screamed as he fell three feet, reveling the illusion.

Thursday, 25th April, 2019

  • 04:46 PM - Oofta mentioned Elfcrusher in post What does it mean to "Challenge the Character"?
    Great and interesting post. I'm keying on this at the end for a reason. I think that everyone who has posted in this thread, so far, has articulated the same distinction (for the most part) with regards to PC/Player challenges. I guess what I'm not sure I understand is how, in the excerpted fashion, this is any different that what Elfcrusher is saying when he articulates that a PC challenge is actually a build challenge? By investing resources into, for example, being a trap-finder? Am I missing something? Or are you agreeing? We're kind of agreeing? Sort of? For me challenging the PC applies to the part of overcoming an obstacle or achieving a goal using the numbers on the character sheet along with a die roll*. Sometimes this is good for the player because they have high numbers, sometimes it's not. So again, encounters are often a mix. Can you come up with a way of achieving your goal that uses the best aspects of your PC or do you have to fall back on some of the weakest because you have no choice? I don't go out of my way to target weaknesses, but if the scene calls for lifting a heavy rock I had assumed you would need to make an strength (athletics) check. But maybe the player thinks of using some type of lever in which case I'd still call for a check but this time using intelligence to see if they can...
  • 03:46 PM - lowkey13 mentioned Elfcrusher in post What does it mean to "Challenge the Character"?
    In a broader sense, I like to create adventures that mix PC challenges and Player challenges. If someone has invested a significant amount of PC resources into being the best trap-finder ever, I want to reward that. If the players come up with a clever plan to bypass the trap altogether, I want to reward that as well. Great and interesting post. I'm keying on this at the end for a reason. I think that everyone who has posted in this thread, so far, has articulated the same distinction (for the most part) with regards to PC/Player challenges. I guess what I'm not sure I understand is how, in the excerpted fashion, this is any different that what Elfcrusher is saying when he articulates that a PC challenge is actually a build challenge? By investing resources into, for example, being a trap-finder? Am I missing something? Or are you agreeing?
  • 02:37 AM - pemerton mentioned Elfcrusher in post If an NPC is telling the truth, what's the Insight DC to know they're telling the truth?
    ... story for there to be a somewhat difficult to climb run-of-the-mill wall I may include it. Unless it's important I get past it with as little muss and fuss as possible.To me, this would seem a good reason not to call for a check at all, because nothing is at stake.. Just narrate the climbing of the unremarable wall and keep moving until something more significant comes up. So, just to be clear, yíall would allow a player to roll (and potentially fail) to perform a task that you didnít initially plan to require a roll to succeed on, simply because they announced that they were making a check? Thatís actually how you would all rule in that situation?For my part, it would depend. If the DC is zero/automatic (as per Hussar's comments upthread), no. But if what's going on is a mismatch between GM and player expectations as to whether something is at stake, it might be time for a re-calibration in our understanding of the situation. Either way, I couldn't imagine it playing out like Elfcrusher's example.

Friday, 19th April, 2019

  • 08:18 AM - Hussar mentioned Elfcrusher in post If an NPC is telling the truth, what's the Insight DC to know they're telling the truth?
    ...r how good of an explanation either Player gives. No matter how many eloquent words the player of the blunt character uses, the DC is still 20 for this particular approach to this particular goal. And no matter how much of a mumble-mouth our player of the Cha 20 character is, theyíll still have a +8 to the roll. Pretty neat, eh? The scenario challenges the players. The difficulty of the task challenges the characters. See, to me, this is a perfect example of why I don't play this way. If, as Bawylie says, " it doesnít matter how good of an explanation either Player gives", then why am I giving any explanation at all? If the DC is static, then what's the point? I can be as silver tongued or as tongue tied or just say, "I persuade the King, Persuasion X" and the end result is identical. Me, I would much, much rather that the player narrates the results than the lead up to the roll. The lead up may be contradicted by the roll. The results won't be. Now, OTOH, if, as say, Elfcrusher says, we are playing to the player and not the character, then what I say absolutely matters. If I can say it right, I won't even have to make a check, or, depending on how well I do it, my DC will be reduced (which effectively grants me bonuses on my die roll). Again, and I think I stated this way, way back in the early pages of this thread, it makes me, the DM, too visible as now I'm judging performances, which I don't want to do. So, I'd rather be like Baywilie where it doesn't matter what explanation the player gives and then take it a step further and skip the explanation (which doesn't matter) and go right to the result, which does matter.
  • 07:29 AM - pemerton mentioned Elfcrusher in post If an NPC is telling the truth, what's the Insight DC to know they're telling the truth?
    ...roll. They would remain neutral as a counter to the consequences of failure. So, it was proposed, that there should not only be consequences for failure, but consequences for doing nothing. So, exactly what I said. Consequence for failing and consequence for doing nothing.That was me, not Charlaquin. As per a post I made not too long ago days-wise but maybe 100+ posts upthread, there are different approaches possible and this thread is bringing out some of those differences. Just to mention some of the posters I've interacted with: The approach I'm describing (which I use in 4e and which I think could be ported to 5e) has some similiarities to 5ekyu's, but is not identical (as can be seen in the discussion of the Audience With the Troll King scenario). Ovinomancer also does some things similar to me - eg in some recent posts mentions the idea of keeping up the pressure on the players via their PCs - but not identically I don't think. I also have some similiarites to Elfcrusher and Charlaquin - eg regarding the fictional specification of the declared action as very important - but some differences - eg I call for more checks than they do (see my quote upthread from Luke Crane for the reasons why). I have had far too many players who are so scared of failing and making things worse for the party that instead they opt to do nothing. So, when I see people saying that by adding more consequences for failing a roll than simply defaulting to the status quo, and that makes their players more eager to act, that goes against everything I have seen with new players. The more consequences there are, the more likely they are to withdraw. <snip> Failing forward is great, I love that style. But that was not the style I was addressing. This style seems more like "checks shouldn't be rolled unless failure hurts" and that is why I said the fighter puts there foot in their mouth. Under that style, as I understand it, it cannot be that the fighter simply fails t...

Monday, 15th April, 2019

  • 02:18 AM - Ovinomancer mentioned Elfcrusher in post If an NPC is telling the truth, what's the Insight DC to know they're telling the truth?
    OK, but then "I listen at the door" is pretty concrete. "I ride my horse across the plain, hastening to Hardby" is pretty concrete. But at least some posters are suggesting that those sorts of action declarations lack sufficient precision. I'm not wanting to put everyone in the same box - I already think I posted upthread that I get a different impression from your posts than (say) elfrcrusher's - but the overall vibe I am getting is one of emphasis on engineering details rather than (say) emotional or thematic details. To the extent that your game contradicts that vibe, OK, I believe you. I listen at the door is at the minimum threshold, i think. And, yes, I'd say there's a lot more engineering in Elfcrusher's game than mine, His example of how much thinking goes into his games is a very far cry from the "oh, crap, I supposed to run in 15 minutes" I usually do. I just finished a dungeon tonight that's run the last two sessions, which was reasonably prepped. The "final" room, though, didn't go at all how I anticipated, which was awesome. I mean, I figured it would be a social encounter with a powerful prisoner of the area, negotiating information for freedom, and it was kinda that, but the dwarven barbarian kicked things off by making an offering of alcoholic beverages, and so it went in a very different way that what I anticipated. Drunk djinns are much more genial and forthcoming than I expected (some great rolls!). As it was, the planned hard choices ended up being friendly with a powerful elemental AND getting good info on what they came for. I think this may be an overly narrow account of "skilled play". There's a well-known anecdote of Gygax ruling that the sceptre-to-crown ...

Sunday, 14th April, 2019

  • 11:05 PM - CleverNickName mentioned Elfcrusher in post Matt Mercer Just Changed My Mind About Multiclassing
    iserith and Bawylie totally opened my eyes to a better way to play D&D.Tell us a story, Elfcrusher!
  • 09:31 PM - Chaosmancer mentioned Elfcrusher in post If an NPC is telling the truth, what's the Insight DC to know they're telling the truth?
    ...ell us why. So, if I am confronted by failure, I don't just brush it off, I give them the reason in the narrative. Players fail rolls. It happens in the game. Whether that particular roll should have been called for has nothing to do with the fact that as a DM I have to consider how I would narrate a failure, even one that on the surface seemed so unlikely that we didn't think it was going to happen. Not exactly. My problem was with the way of narrating the failure you claimed was better. It wasnít better, it was flawed for exactly the same reasons that the ruling in the example was flawed - namely, that arriving at it would still have required calling for a roll in a situation where the outcome was not uncertain. It was no better a call, it was just a more flowery way of making the same bad call. Exactly. You have no problem with what I said, you have no disagreement with me. Your entire disagreement is that I didn't condemn an absurd premise hard enough. Fine. Elfcrusher, in your sarcastic example of a DM calling for a die roll to disarm a poisoned handle, even after the player declared they were wiping the handle with a thick cloth and were wearing gloves so that no poison could possibly contact their skin, you were completely wrong in all ways and there was nothing redeemable about that. No roll should ever be called upon in that situation, no matter the circumstances, and nothing else could ever be said about that example or any permutation of that example because your failure in calling for that roll was so extreme it eclipses everything else. Further more, my use of that example to bring up an entirely different point was wrong in all ways. I should have never have done so, and will endeavor to punish myself appropriately for such a disgrace, since my point fell under the assumption of the roll that must have never been and that is a shameful scar upon my DMing from here on out. Now, Charlaquin, if I have properly responded to the roll tha...


Page 1 of 9 123456789 LastLast
No results to display...

Monday, 24th June, 2019

  • 02:24 PM - Celebrim quoted Elfcrusher in post What would be some good metics to evaluate RPG rules/systems?
    Are you defining "player agency" to mean that player actions can affect/change outcomes? I don't think I've ever settled on a "official" definition of player agency, but in general by player agency I mean tending to have the ability by your in game choices (propositions) to change both the direction and the outcome of the game. I think you'll find that defining "direction and outcome" tends to be difficult here. If so, I think you're describing the inverse of railroading, but railroading and player agency are not antonyms. I've never defined railroading except in a Aristotelian manner either, but I would think that as close as I've come to defining "to railroad" it isn't an antonym of "agency" because one is a verb and the other is a noun, but they are related. As a loose definition, I tend to define "to railroad" as "Any of a number of GMing techniques where by the GM transfers agency from the player to himself in order to take temporary control over the direction of the story." ...

Sunday, 16th June, 2019

  • 11:57 PM - Celebrim quoted Elfcrusher in post Why are we okay with violence in RPGs?
    I thought it was the other way around: the military puts a whole lotta effort into un-conditioning new recruits, so that they won't be all conflicted about it when the moment comes. Yes, but I am postulating that modern society successfully conditions the majority of person to abhor actual violence through a variety of mechanisms, both subtle and overt. Thus, it is necessary to uncondition new recruits if they are from modern society. However, there is a lot of highly politicized research into this and because it appears to be agenda driven, I take with a grain of salt assertions about how difficult it is to get people to kill other people. And that this is why the military actively promotes derogatory slurs for people of whatever state they happen to be fighting. To de-humanize the enemy. LOL. Ok, yeah. This is an example of why I can't take this sort of thing seriously. Any group of humans will actively develop slurs for any perceived rival group of humans all on their ...
  • 07:51 PM - DMMike quoted Elfcrusher in post 3 Favorite Things About Your Favorite System
    1) Very flat power curve. There are no levels, but veteran characters arenít significantly (by RPG standards) more powerful than newly created characters. And yet there are lots of incremental rewards along the way. 2. Consistency of Rules. Once you know the rules there's very little need to open the rule book. This makes play a lot faster. 3) Ease of Homebrew.If you want to add new classes/races/monsters/whatever, there are guidelines to keep it balanced. There's an index full of generic monster stats, listed by role and level I'll take any and all games conforming to these ideas. And for good measure, from Modos RPG: 4. Goals and Flaws. A character concept/background contains at least one goal and flaw of the character. The goal helps to motivate the PC when things get murky, and the flaw is a reminder that a PC isn't just a bag of bonuses. Players aren't required to act on their goals and flaws, but can earn story and/or rules benefits for doing so.

Friday, 14th June, 2019

  • 08:48 PM - Doctor Futurity quoted Elfcrusher in post Baldur's Gate III Announced; Powered by D&D 5E
    Didn't you get the memo that everything wrong with tabletop gaming has to do with kids and video games? Only memo I got blamed the AAA+ developers/publishers. Jim Sterling told me!
  • 04:43 PM - Gradine quoted Elfcrusher in post Baldur's Gate III Announced; Powered by D&D 5E
    Didn't you get the memo that everything wrong with tabletop gaming has to do with kids and video games? I thought that was only in reference to 4th edition? :devil:
  • 07:30 AM - Paul Farquhar quoted Elfcrusher in post Heroes of Baldur's Gate is a D&D Adventure From Bioware's Baldur's Gate Designer
    Minor thread necromancy... For those familiar with this adventure, 2 questions: 1) I read the bit about iconic character "companions". Would that make this a good candidate for just two players, in that you could pad out the party with these NPCs? 2) Where is this on the railroad-sandbox spectrum? My two players will be D&D novices (especially one) who I think are going to want a pretty straightforward story line, where it's generally obvious where to go next, and who you fight versus who you talk to. 1) Yes, this adventure is about as good as you can get for that. 2) It's quite sandboxy compared to most published adventures. However, if players are familiar with the CRPG they should have a better idea about what to do.
  • 06:00 AM - Tony Vargas quoted Elfcrusher in post If you could put D&D into any other non middle ages genre, what would it be?
    Wait...D&D is middle ages?.I must have missed that memo. The original said "Medieval " right on the cover, 45 years ago.... ....and, y'know, 45 is middle aged. ;P
  • 05:49 AM - Tazawa quoted Elfcrusher in post Heroes of Baldur's Gate is a D&D Adventure From Bioware's Baldur's Gate Designer
    Minor thread necromancy... For those familiar with this adventure, 2 questions: 1) I read the bit about iconic character "companions". Would that make this a good candidate for just two players, in that you could pad out the party with these NPCs? 2) Where is this on the railroad-sandbox spectrum? My two players will be D&D novices (especially one) who I think are going to want a pretty straightforward story line, where it's generally obvious where to go next, and who you fight versus who you talk to. 1) The adventure would work well with just one player and the companions, just like the original video game. The companions have simple stat block and are easy to run, with a lot of personality details in their descriptions (and nice pictures). Two players would be fine. 2) About in the middle. Enemies and allies are generally easy to distinguish. The story has clear goals but the characters can take different routes to get there. Have fun!
  • 01:47 AM - Garthanos quoted Elfcrusher in post What do you love about your favorite edition that ISNíT rules related?
    5th edition. What I love is that it replaced 4th edition... I love that Elfcrusher still gets to have fun with his e-war...

Thursday, 13th June, 2019

  • 08:05 PM - Bedrockgames quoted Elfcrusher in post Why are we okay with violence in RPGs?
    My original source was my grandfather, describing his training for WWII. However, this is the first thing that popped up for me on Google: https://www.sfgate.com/science/article/THE-SCIENCE-OF-CREATING-KILLERS-Human-2514123.php. (EDIT: I just realized you only quoted the second half of my post. No, it doesn't mention the derogatory slurs thing. I'll go look for that. EDIT2: Nope, first page of results on first search didn't turn up anything. But I'll continue to believe my grandfather.) Pithy quote: For somebody who doesn't want to believe this, it would be pretty easy to just say, "Yeah but that's a newspaper...from liberal San Francisco. Where's the peer reviewed clinical research?" And my answer would be: "I dunno. It's not a high enough priority for me that I'm going to go looking." EDIT: And just to honor my grandfather, who died a few years ago, I want to mention that for decades he claimed he had been on Guam, doing supply stuff. Just before he died he was at a doctor's appointmen...
  • 06:35 PM - Bedrockgames quoted Elfcrusher in post Why are we okay with violence in RPGs?
    And that this is why the military actively promotes derogatory slurs for people of whatever state they happen to be fighting. To de-humanize the enemy. This doesn't sound like it is true, or at the very least not true for a very long time (been googling it and can't find much); do you have sources on this? This doesn't match what I've heard from people in the military I've spoken with.
  • 02:25 PM - Ovinomancer quoted Elfcrusher in post Systems You'd Never Play after Reading Them
    Bear in mind I didn't (as the title of the thread says) actually play it, and I had to go get it off the shelf and page through it to remember what the turn-offs were. In a nutshell it felt like you couldn't play the game without having a pretty thorough understanding of the setting, but the setting itself required too much work to grok. I paged through it and there's a bewildering array of nationalities, each of which is supposed to have a certain flavor. Honestly it would have been a ton easier if each one just had a real country after it, to help give it context. (E.g., "This is like Greece, ok?") The genre really appealed to me so I backed the KS, but the book turned me off. You don't even see any rules for dozens of pages (or maybe I missed them), and when I tried to get a sense of "how does this game work?" it doesn't seem like that's in one place. It may still be a great game: I didn't really give it a chance because it didn't grab me.Hmm. Are you talking about 7th Sea 2e? That's t...
  • 05:51 AM - Umbran quoted Elfcrusher in post Why are we okay with violence in RPGs?
    Makes me wonder if you actually understand the arguments in this thread, or in that other one that shall not be named. . Also others on the thread brought up this topic so figured might as well weigh in on that point. Talk about your questionable choices. One reason why we are okay with violence, is that in the real world, some people have issues letting things go, and that tends to escalate.... Gentlemen, be warned - dragging around drama from closed threads is an astoundingly good way to get yourself a vacation from the site. Both of you drop it, now, please and thank you. I would, in fact, take this exchange as an indication that neither one of you should be responding to each other in this thread. It does not seem that either of you has cooled off well enough to resist the temptation to take pot-shots.
  • 12:24 AM - Blue quoted Elfcrusher in post Systems You'd Never Play after Reading Them
    7th Sea I've never read 7th Sea but I see others gushing about it, enough that it's on my list of "want to try" games. I'll take this as a warning though. Any specifics you can share about why it didn't work?

Wednesday, 12th June, 2019

  • 10:05 PM - Bedrockgames quoted Elfcrusher in post Why are we okay with violence in RPGs?
    ??? Me either. Was somebody in this thread suggesting there's a connection? Makes me wonder if you actually understand the arguments in this thread, or in that other one that shall not be named. Or if maybe you just fear others making such a connection (e.g., the "violent video games cause violent crime" canard) so you're unwilling to entertain some possibilities. Also others on the thread brought up this topic so figured might as well weigh in on that point. Happy to engage you elf, but not going to do so if you continue to speak to me like this. A modicum of respect or politeness would be appreciated
  • 10:02 PM - Bedrockgames quoted Elfcrusher in post Why are we okay with violence in RPGs?
    ??? Me either. Was somebody in this thread suggesting there's a connection? Makes me wonder if you actually understand the arguments in this thread, or in that other one that shall not be named. Or if maybe you just fear others making such a connection (e.g., the "violent video games cause violent crime" canard) so you're unwilling to entertain some possibilities. I assumed this was the reason behind the discomfort with violence in RPGs
  • 09:48 PM - Bagpuss quoted Elfcrusher in post Why are we okay with violence in RPGs?
    You have a point: an ethical dilemma is an ethical dilemma even if it is entirely imaginary. But when you discuss the trolley car problem in freshman philosophy you are, I assume, trying to imagine that there are real lives at stake, and that it would be a tragedy for them to be lost. In other words, you are analyzing the problem as if it were real. I don't think you would answer the trolley car problem with, "Can I kill them all, and take their stuff?" You are right I wouldn't answer it like that, and when play tabletop I generally don't roleplay like that either. I know the murderhobo is a common trope, but generally most players I know have progressed beyond that pretty quickly, but occasionally revisit it, because it can be fun from time to time. If so, that seems to conflict with the sentiments you express about RPG violence: that since it is make-believe violence it doesn't really matter. I didn't say it doesn't matter, just that it isn't real. So we shouldn't have a problem with it. L...
  • 08:53 PM - Celebrim quoted Elfcrusher in post What would be some good metics to evaluate RPG rules/systems?
    Again, though, I'm not looking for an objective metric. 10 software engineers with sufficient experience and knowledge would be likely to give a given piece of source code a somewhat similar rating for compactness and elegance. Exactly the same value? No. But in the same ballpark. You are possibly right. Certainly, 10 software engineers with sufficient experience and knowledge would be able to agree as to when code was badly written. But one of the underlying assumptions of your statement is that they software engineers were reasonably familiar with the language paradigm of the code. I honestly don't have have a very good feel for what very elegant Lisp or Prolog code would look like, because while I've been exposed to toy solutions in those languages (and asked to write a few toy solutions), I've never seen anything resembling a real solution in those languages and the paradigm that they use is radically different. Likewise, on first appearance, assembly language looks like gobbly-...
  • 08:35 PM - Tony Vargas quoted Elfcrusher in post What would be some good metics to evaluate RPG rules/systems?
    I didn't say that I'm looking for new games that are like existing ones. You didn't say it, may not believe it, but the rating systems you're thinking about - and your reactions to what's been proposed as possible ratings - make me think that's what you're looking for... ... or, at least, what you'll end up finding, by looking in the manner that you seem to be leaning towards. That said, you raise a good point: if a game is totally unlike existing games, how do you evaluate it using that method.You'd end up evaluating it negatively (in the sense of judging it to be bad, or in the sense of only being able to define what it's not), or even as not being a game at all.
  • 08:29 PM - Bedrockgames quoted Elfcrusher in post Why are we okay with violence in RPGs?
    You have a point: an ethical dilemma is an ethical dilemma even if it is entirely imaginary. But when you discuss the trolley car problem in freshman philosophy you are, I assume, trying to imagine that there are real lives at stake, and that it would be a tragedy for them to be lost. In other words, you are analyzing the problem as if it were real. I don't think you would answer the trolley car problem with, "Can I kill them all, and take their stuff?" Is that right? If so, that seems to conflict with the sentiments you express about RPG violence: that since it is make-believe violence it doesn't really matter. (As an aside, a version of the trolley car problem is now appearing in real life in autonomous car design, in the sense of balancing the life of the occupants of the car versus the lives of others. One company...I think it was Mercedes...got in some hot water for publicly stating how its algorithms would make those decisions.) Honestly, I haven't seen that adventure since the...


Elfcrusher's Downloads

  Filename Total Downloads Rating Files Uploaded Last Updated

Most Recent Favorite Generators/Tables

View All Favorites