Gary Gygax Q&A, Part IV - Page 14





  1. #131
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    That calls to mind my early days of wargaming. My ex-wife was convinced that I was carrying on an affair when I would be away all night. After much disputation, I agreed to have the games played at our place despite the childrens' presence (noisy) and her wanting to talk.

    So about eight o'clock my opponent showed up and we begin playing. At around 11 PM my ex-wife said loudly, "Do you know that neither one of you has said a word in over an hour?!" Grunted responses were all that was forthcoming, so she went off to bed, and we finished the game around 7 AM that morning. We all had breakfast together, then my opponent went home to get some sleep. The ex- never did like games, gamers...or me in actuality.
    HA !!!
    I know the feeling Gary.
    Ya'Know the old ex-wives just seem to not get the fine nuances of the game do they. Well as the old saying goes,................ exes come and go but D&D moves ever forward....... hehehe (I have 2 my self and each one hated my gaming)

    (Funny Story)
    One time I was on the telephone with one of my gaming buddies where we were talking about some PC's he wanted to use, one was named ariana and another Freya,... well ex wife #2 heard me talking about these PC's and thought I was setting up a date with my buddy for us. BOY OH BOY.... well to make it short when we divorced she told the judge about Ariana and Freya my 2 girlfriends..... HAHAHA Ya should have seen me trying to explain who they really were to a judge............ precious moment I tell ya,......... The judge actually beleived me.

    But alas,...... Ariana died killed by a Assassin, and Freya still jousts with me and avoids many a trap I have set for her...........

    But as it has been said on my boards, and in many many forms, I am impressed with someone like yourself to take time out of there busy schedule to post repsonses to the wee masses such as myself and others. Most authors, / game designers, etc,..etc,.. dont do that. And it shows the true character that bleeds through your games and makes them so enjoyable.

 

  • #132
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    Col_Pladoh,

    Why all the secrecy about Mordenkainen's stats? This character has been written up previously in the old Rogue's Gallery, in Mordenkainen's Fantastic Adventure, and in the recent Epic Level Handbook. (I have them all, and there is only very little difference between the writeups, so they must be at least close to accurate.)

    I can understand not wanting to retype the character's stats everytime someone asks, or just not knowing the stats off the top of your head, but you have said several times that I've read, that you are adamant about not giving out the stats of your PCs -- especially one that you currently play.

    Why is this? It just seems overly protective of something that doesn't need protection. I mean, what do you fear someone is going to do with the stats if you announce them (beyond what has already been published)?

    Quasqueton
    Last edited by Quasqueton; Sunday, 28th September, 2003 at 04:17 PM.

  • #133
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quasqueton
    Col_Pladoh,

    Why all the secrecy about Mordenkainen's stats? This character has been written up previously in the old Rogue's Gallery, in Mordenkainen's Fantastic Adventure, and in the recent Epic Level Handbook. (I have them all, and there is only very little difference between the writeups, so they must be at least close to accurate.)

    I can understand not wanting to retype the character's stats everytime someone asks, or just not knowing the stats off the top of your head, but you have said several times that I've read, that you are adamant about not giving out the stats of your PCs -- especially one that you currently play.

    Why is this? It just seems overly protective of something that doesn't need protection. I mean, what do you fear someone is going to do with the stats if you announce them (beyond what has already been published)?

    Quasqueton
    or else none of th published stats or information are correct and they are just something some one made up, and Gary would rather keep the real stuff to himself.
    ken
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    Alas poor Elric I was a thousand times more evil than you
    http://www.geocities.com/J_Elric_Smith/Index.html

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    Quote Originally Posted by Col_Pladoh
    An excellent question. the plethora of critters offered is a game device meant to keep the DM supplied with as large a roster of strange beasts to throw at his players as was needed. For dungeon adventuring and really wild wilderness, such a broad variety makes sense.

    For a defined world that is less magic-heavy, then a narrower range of creatures is more logical. In my Greyhawk campaign something over half as many monsters as were included in the three bestiary books were in play, the vast majority of those in dungeons or other planes.

    I confess to creating new creatures in many a module just to have something confront the PCs that they didn't recognize and know how to deal with...

    Cheers,
    Gary
    Thanks for this. I certainly appreciate the impulse to create new monsters. Right now, I'm modeling those medieval dog-headed men I've become so enchanted with. Specifically, I'm modeling the type of dog-headed man Saint Christopher was -- 12' tall, unable to speak, natural life-span 300+ years. I'm kind of amazed someone hasn't already made these guys.

    Here's one tough aspect of this, though: in my current campaigns, people have Summon Monster spells; because the planes system creates a multiverse, I don't know how much business I have circumscribing what they can summon. Theoretically, I suppose, these creatures might exist on some other plane of existence; what do you think would be a reasonable way to regulate what can be summoned by way of this spell? This becomes even more problematic with the Summon Nature's Ally spells. A pivotal combat in a campaign I just ended was resolved by the characters summoning a Dire Bear into an African environment. It was such an innovative thing to do, I chose not to argue but I was left unsure of whether I should have ruled it out.
    A Fusangite

    -----------------------------------

    one must depart from the province of Lean-tong, north of Peking and that after travelling 12,000 li, the traveller would reach Japan, and thence to the north, after a journey of 7000 li, arrive at the country of Wen-Schin (the painted people). Five thousand li from this country towards the east is Tahan, which is 20,000 li from Fusang.

    -- A 6th century account of Fusang, the country across the Pacific from China.

  • #135
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    I haven't seen the films, although "The Summoner" clip is a hoot! I enjoy KoDT, dork tower, and Nodwick. Naturally, I don't take myself, or GAMING, TOO SERIOUSLY
    Check out this web site for the movie: www.deadgentlemen.com. Gamers is a classic in the making, and definately worth checking out.

    And I figured as much about the campaign discussion thing. Now I'm not sure if I'm glad I didn't bother, or I'm disappointed I didn't get it out before I knew it was bad. You know, that whole forgiveness versus persmission thing.

    Moving on from alignment questions, here's something similar. It seems that people are getting more into playing good individuals of typically evil races, like orcs and drow, and even generally universally evil beings like demons and vampires. Do you agree that it's a new thing, or has that been a constant throughout the game? If it is new, do you think it reflects a way gamers look at the world and concepts like universal evil, or is it just because evil characters are considered "cooler" for some reason? I'll post my opinions, but I'd like to hear what you think first.

    Vyreth

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    Bloody double posts.
    Last edited by LordVyreth; Thursday, 2nd October, 2003 at 10:14 PM.

  • #137
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    When I am less busy I'll see about the humor on the website you note.

    As for playing an evil-race character as non-evil, sure! Why not, as there is variation of such outlook in most fantasy races. The general alignment category speaks to the racial propensity and the bent of the majority of it, but certainly a lot of individuals can be different.

    That does not apply to it inherantly evil entities such as vampires, let alone demons and devils. There the modification might be in orderliness (Law-Chaos) and the degree of Evil, the dilligence with which the wicked and malign is pursued. Just as there are truly evil people with no redeeming qualities whatsoever, so too all such creatures of Evil, for they epitomize that trait.

    Cheers,
    Gary

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    Well, The Gamers is actually available on DVD, so you'll have to actually order it to see it. It's worth the money, though!

    Yeah, but the thing is, people are playing good members of inherently evil races, and/or houseruling that even these creatures don't always reflect one alignment. There are some examples of that in the official settings, as well (like the Planescape setting, and the video game based on such. Not to mention numerous Dragon articles.)

    Personally, I find it to be a positive change myself. I think a lot of people, especially members of social minorities like most gamers, identify themselves as the target of stereotypes, and recognize how harmful they are on a personal and sociological basis. As a result, when they hear about a group regarded as always evil, etc., they tend to emphasis with it. Of course, there's also the built-in character depth that comes with it (well, when not ripping a famous character of completely,) and the general appeal of the forbidden or taboo concepts. To be fair, there's some historical and modern mythological precedent for non-evil undead, alignment-changing outsiders, and such. And there's always the handy Helm of Opposite Alignment trick to make it work in-game.

    Vyreth

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    Setting aside the debate of nature versus nurture, there are always abberations, and with intelligent creatures change is possible. Consider how many monks and priests were martyred in the conversion of the Friesains to Christianity, but eventually they prevailed. Contrast that with non-intelligent species, a wolverine for example. The likelihood of one not being an aggressive hunter-killer is infinitismal.

    "Outsiders" is not a term that properly connotes non-human origination. It implies that the world is the inner, central place. Demons and devils are creatures of pure evil, just as there those of pure good. Neither sort of entity can ever be anything else in my view. It is akin to the wolverine example given above.

    "Minorities" aren't that in their own country, and RPGs, D&D in particular, are played in thre majority of nations of the world. It is social-economic class that is the determanant, not ethnicity. Most gamers are highly literate and of the middle class. About a quarter of them are connected to information technology. In all, males outnumber females by about 9 to 1--so there's the minority that publishers would most like to attract to RPGs

    Cheers,
    Gary

    Cheers,
    Gary

  • #140
    4:1 according to WotC's 2000 market research piece, and I doubt the ratio has since got worse.

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