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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Today, 08:23 AM
    I'm not sure I'd include Heinlein as being "sophisticated". At least as far as gender issues go. Funny thing is, if you click the link, there's a big red button for an additional thought to the comic: Kinda funny.
    4 replies | 226 view(s)
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Today, 06:30 AM
    So I've skimmed the recent bits of the thread. In a follow-up post, I'm going to relay a recent PC:PC social conflict in Strike (!) and invite folks to chime in on how they perceive this anecdote (a) contrasts with gameplay where social conflict isn't formalized and (b) there are neither mechanical feedbacks nor PC build components involved. But first, I want to post some text from Strike (!)...
    630 replies | 15105 view(s)
    3 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Today, 04:28 AM
    Just a bit of a tweak to the nose. :D from http://smbc-comics.com/comic/golden-age
    4 replies | 226 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Today, 12:35 AM
    Gimme a break. No one is telling you to conform. You are being asked to not fling poo every single time the issue comes up. He’s got a point. There is NOTHING stopping you from having 2e style tieflings in your game. Zero. Zip. Nada. So why are you trying to force everyone else to adhere to your tastes?
    103 replies | 2901 view(s)
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  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Friday, 12th July, 2019, 06:26 PM
    The original Terminator (i.e. the T-800 that was destroyed in Terminator), or an aged model of the original Terminator? Maybe the person the T-800 was modeled after? Curious how they are going to explain this. Was it stated that John Connor was dead?
    36 replies | 753 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 12th July, 2019, 01:10 AM
    That’s your definition of small? Ok. I can see why you think the way you do.
    103 replies | 2901 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 12th July, 2019, 12:33 AM
    Very pretty. And, oh look, North is at the top of the map. :D :p
    58 replies | 9278 view(s)
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Thursday, 11th July, 2019, 11:28 PM
    I run two versions of D&D; 4e and Moldvay Basic. So the answer is while D&D 4e can scratch an itch similar to Mouse Guard, Cortex+ , Dungeon World, and Mouse Guard, it and Moldvay Basic can't reproduce Dogs in the Vineyard, Apocalypse World, Dread, Blades in the Dark, Torchbearer, My Life With Master, Sorcerer, and Star Wars like Strike (!) and Scum and Villainy. Because system matters.
    77 replies | 2303 view(s)
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  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Thursday, 11th July, 2019, 05:21 PM
    Ultima 1 got me into CRPG's...I played all of the Ultimas religiously. To me, the best was Ultima 7/ 7.5...a wonderful story, open world, and a game I can play over and over again. I absolutely loved the original D&D gold box Pool of Radiance. I also remember it was effing HARD!!
    8 replies | 251 view(s)
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  • steenan's Avatar
    Wednesday, 10th July, 2019, 04:41 PM
    I think the question is strange. It treats D&D as some kind of default, as if one needed a reason to play something different. For me, D&D was just one of the games I tried; neither the first nor the best one. In general, I prefer varied experiences. I switch between games to do something different. Sometimes, we play series of one-shots, jumping between games. At other times, we play...
    77 replies | 2303 view(s)
    6 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 10th July, 2019, 11:25 AM
    Shhhh. If you added this sort of thing, the edition warriors would have had the WotC dev's heads on pikes. After all, this is precisely what 4e did and apparently everyone hated it because it was a spectacularly bad idea. So bad of an idea that it retroactively kicked puppies before they were even born. So, good luck with this.
    223 replies | 5319 view(s)
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  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Tuesday, 9th July, 2019, 10:07 PM
    I recently watched KickBoxer (Jean-Claude Van Damme) on Netflix...I think that it may be the most 80's movie in existence. Training montage, sad JCVD roaming through the streets being sad...slow-mo action scenes with him making funny faces. The Running Man comes a close second.
    32 replies | 888 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 9th July, 2019, 11:04 AM
    Heh. I’m glad I’m not the only one.
    49 replies | 1821 view(s)
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Monday, 8th July, 2019, 06:52 PM
    This is where these conversations get so unwieldy. I mean...how is this question even conceived? OF COURSE THEY DO. If the point of play is (a) competitive integrity and (b) autonomy and expression of agency in decision points (and it is in this case; Gamism)...well, in any_activity where these things are the apex play priority, the legitimacy of (a) and (b) utterly depends upon win/loss...
    126 replies | 8741 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Monday, 8th July, 2019, 06:27 PM
    It was a fun movie, but there were some plot holes that were large enough to drive semi-trucks through. All-in-all, though...I enjoyed it. I particularly liked the return of J.K. Simmons as J. Jonah Jamison.
    8 replies | 345 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 8th July, 2019, 09:09 AM
    Never minding the number of sock puppet accounts people have as well.
    177 replies | 5806 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 8th July, 2019, 12:14 AM
    Hussar replied to No Magic Shops!
    Not sure I buy that Maxperson, since the last two modules I bought - Dragon Heist and Ghosts of Saltmarsh include rather lengthy rules additions. GoS contains all the rules needed for running naval combat, for example. So, it's not like modules are not a source of mechanics. Traditionally, as well, in D&D, modules have often served as the source for new mechanics or for adjustments of existing...
    960 replies | 46030 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 7th July, 2019, 05:03 AM
    Hussar replied to No Magic Shops!
    Heh. One of the most unfortunate things about 4e is a LOT of the really interesting stuff that came out for 4e came out after so many folks had left. Had they led with a lot of the stuff, they would have been much better off. :(
    960 replies | 46030 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 7th July, 2019, 04:42 AM
    Hussar replied to No Magic Shops!
    Funny how experiences differ. My 4e rogue believed that he was touched by a god (Kord) and that he was a prophet of Kord. He had a life stealing dagger (granted you x temp hp if you killed a target) and he consecrated all his kills to Kord. :D He wasn't really running on all 8 cylinders. :D "Souls for Kord" was a great line. But, that dagger became a major focus point (as well as a faintly...
    960 replies | 46030 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 7th July, 2019, 04:32 AM
    I'm no big fan of GNS theory, mostly because bringing it up tends to be like invoking Tolkien in RPG discussions - it's the geek version of Godwinning a thread and more time gets spent debating the theory than actually using it. But, Tony Vargas, I do think you are way off base here. GNS theory is not exclusionary at all. It's, as Lost Soul above pointed out very concisely, simply a...
    126 replies | 8741 view(s)
    3 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 6th July, 2019, 08:08 AM
    Hussar replied to No Magic Shops!
    No. It didn't.
    960 replies | 46030 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 6th July, 2019, 07:57 AM
    No horse in this race, but, it's kinda interesting anyway. No. Matters in the sense that there will be mechanics in place to deal with this element. Thus, broken builds matter in a gamist game because they violate the win conditions - the same way that using a cheat code or an exploit in a video game violates the nature of the game. In non-gamist games, broken builds don't matter...
    126 replies | 8741 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 4th July, 2019, 11:07 AM
    Considering that in a given round of combat, you are likely having somewhere around 5 attack rolls per round (probably more), I find that very hard to believe. Two four round combats in a session (hardly a heavy combat session) would result in 40-60 attack rolls. I seriously doubt you have that many skill checks in a given session. But, even if you did, how much of an impact is guidance...
    132 replies | 65121 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 4th July, 2019, 11:01 AM
    Hussar replied to No Magic Shops!
    Note, that Ghosts of Saltmarsh makes buying magic items a la carte entirely possible. Granted, you might have to wait for Magic Amazon to deliver your bespoke item, but, it is entirely possible to buy magic items in Saltmarsh.
    960 replies | 46030 view(s)
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Thursday, 4th July, 2019, 01:40 AM
    Only very, very tacitly following this thread, but this caught my eye in a "what in the world...?" sort of way. I think this may in fact be a source of dissonance that you and I have in some of these conversations, particularly where it pertains to The Forge and, more specifically, "system matters." The most fundamental core mechanic of VtM and White Wolf games is "The Golden Rule" or...
    126 replies | 8741 view(s)
    4 XP
  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Wednesday, 3rd July, 2019, 06:16 PM
    You young whippersnappers don't understand the concept of core classes. Back in my day, we walked to school uphill both ways in the snow with no shoes on, and we only had 3 core classes (fighting-man, magic-user, and cleric), and we were HAPPY to have them! Now get off my lawn!!!!
    60 replies | 1833 view(s)
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  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Wednesday, 3rd July, 2019, 06:12 PM
    Stupid double post! It's those youngsters, I tell ya!!!!!
    60 replies | 1833 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 3rd July, 2019, 10:04 AM
    It's really fiddly. :D
    1012 replies | 71096 view(s)
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Wednesday, 3rd July, 2019, 03:55 AM
    Good post. I think one of the big problems we have in this sort of discussion relates to your first paragraph. There is a common refrain shared by a lot of TTRPG players that people (in this case their PCs) possess a level of cognitive continuity and coherency, or a lack of disunity among the various mental states and hardware that we all inhabit/deploy simultaneously, the sum of which...
    630 replies | 15105 view(s)
    5 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 2nd July, 2019, 09:45 PM
    Well, no. A +6 would change the success rate from 1/8 to 3/8 - a tripling of success rates due to the bonus. Something that bumps almost half of your failures into successes is a major change. Something that bumps one failure out of eight into a success isn't going to have a whole lot of impact on the game, especially when a single character is unlikely to make more than about 8 skill checks...
    132 replies | 65121 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 2nd July, 2019, 09:41 PM
    That died down very, very quickly outside of a poster or two (hello Mr. V). I certainly didn't see the forums as "full of 4e fans". I saw some quibbling that very quickly disappeared. But, again, we've all got our own bias filters. :D
    1012 replies | 71096 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 2nd July, 2019, 02:23 PM
    But, that's the point I've made already. "Huge impact"? Really? Succeeding 1 in 8 more times than you would without the spell? How is that a "huge impact"? I'm seeing lots of theorycrafting and very, very little actual evidence. And, I'd point out that other than this thread, which was necro'd, this has been a virtual non-issue for the past five years. If it has such a massive...
    132 replies | 65121 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 2nd July, 2019, 02:21 PM
    Now, when I say it's close to 4e, I'm talking about the mechanics. 2 step resource recovery, a multitude of preroll mechanics, virtually all classes being built around a suite of special abilities (typically spells for most of the classes). Very little niche protection. Overnight HP recovery and virtually unkillable PC's. And that's just off the top of my head. When you say it's close to...
    126 replies | 8741 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Tuesday, 2nd July, 2019, 11:59 AM
    Any game that encourages the GM (myself) to covertly or overtly subordinate player decision-points or action resolution mechanics (and through it the integrity of player decision points) to their personal conception of what play trajectory should look like. So much of late 80s through mid 90s TTRPG design. I’ve run many of these games or sat in on them, so it’s probably too late for that.
    111 replies | 8127 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 2nd July, 2019, 11:13 AM
    Heh. DM'd today and I made a mistake. I thought that Guidance in 5e was d4+1, not d4. Player piped up and said, "Isn't that d4?" Me: No. It's d4+1 Player: Are you sure? Me: Well, I was until you said that. One sec. Whoops, you're right. D4. To me, that's the job of a rules guru. I had a number wrong, not a MASSIVE mistake, but, a mistake, I fixed it and we moved on. ...
    95 replies | 3719 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 2nd July, 2019, 11:05 AM
    Well, of course not. Since most of the mechanics were cribbed from 4e, admitting that 5e's mechanics are the reason for 5e's popularity would require folks to admit that 4e had some good ideas and that's just not going to happen. :D
    1012 replies | 71096 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 2nd July, 2019, 10:47 AM
    Nope, that would be me. The greatest trick WotC pulled off was reskinning 4e and selling it as 5e. Because, frankly, there's so much of 4e in 5e mechanically. 4e was just as much the DM's game as 5e was since so much of 4e was about reskinning, refluffing and page 42. I mean, good grief, I never even opened the 4e monster manual because writing up my own monsters was faster and easier. ...
    126 replies | 8741 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 2nd July, 2019, 10:41 AM
    You can't have it both ways. You can't on one hand talk about how it's providing a 10% bump (on average) on a d20 roll and then talk about how that's game breaking. If it's only going to matter 1 in 8 times, which is what you said, then, well, that's pretty much precisely how useful it is. Why would you say that 5e thinks it matters? It is a cantrip after all. The writers seem to think that...
    132 replies | 65121 view(s)
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  • steenan's Avatar
    Monday, 1st July, 2019, 08:51 PM
    While I like many systems, I put Fate at the top of my list 1. Aspects and fate point economy. A beautiful way of making various facts of the fiction tangible and meaningful. Compels help in introducing complications that the players are interested in. 2. Concessions and stress-out. Making failure and loss interesting instead of game-ending, thus incentivizing players to embrace troubles...
    47 replies | 3158 view(s)
    3 XP
  • steenan's Avatar
    Monday, 1st July, 2019, 08:44 PM
    Exalted. I fell in love with the setting, but the system was awful - overwhelmingly complicated and completely unbalanced. I tried several different rulesets instead. Ended up running a very satisfying campaign with a Fate-based system. Cthulhutech. The concept is inspiring, but both the rules and the setting details are bad. I'm still looking for a game that would give me the kind of...
    111 replies | 8127 view(s)
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  • steenan's Avatar
    Monday, 1st July, 2019, 07:42 PM
    Isn't this what the IIEE framework for resolution is about? There are two separate but connected parts of an action a player declares. What the character does (in a "thin" sense) and what the player wants to achieve. Action description is necessary to give it a solid form in the fiction. Intent is necessary because that's what gets resolved. As soon s the action and intent are known it's...
    630 replies | 15105 view(s)
    4 XP
  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Monday, 1st July, 2019, 07:36 PM
    Might even make Drizzt somewhat palatable... Ooooo!!! And his teeth could play Gwenwyvhar!
    56 replies | 2169 view(s)
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  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Monday, 1st July, 2019, 07:02 PM
    Danny DeVito
    56 replies | 2169 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 1st July, 2019, 06:46 AM
    Oh no. That was 100% personal based on the rules interpretations you’ve tried to argue in the past.
    95 replies | 3719 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 1st July, 2019, 01:47 AM
    Like I said, it's going to matter 1 in 8 times. You will succeed on a skill check 1 time more out of the 8 times you failed. This isn't going to make much of a difference in the long term. You are still failing 7 times. Can't really see how that's changing the game too much.
    132 replies | 65121 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 1st July, 2019, 01:44 AM
    This is a truly horrifying thought.
    95 replies | 3719 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 1st July, 2019, 01:42 AM
    Not sure why you say that when the number of gamers and the market have been growing year on year for five or so years now and show no signs of decline. For example, the 5e PHB is STILL in the top 100 on Amazon. If new gamers had peaked, you'd think they'd slow down sales of core books.
    126 replies | 8741 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 30th June, 2019, 02:45 AM
    OTOH, in play, an effective +2 generally isn't breaking anything. How often is the difference between success and failure the difference of the Guidance d4? Sure, it's handy, and I'll say that it's something every character that can cast it will have it in my group, but, overall? It's not really doing an awful lot. The Help action generally is more effective and pretty much anyone can do...
    132 replies | 65121 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 30th June, 2019, 02:32 AM
    But, in finding loopholes and exploits, the rules lawyer sucks all the fun out of the game and actively poisons the table. It's one thing to keep to the rules, that's fine, we're playing a game after all. But, deliberately looking for loopholes isn't playing the game that the rest of the table is playing. It's no different from online gamers who look for exploits in games to get ahead of...
    95 replies | 3719 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 30th June, 2019, 02:01 AM
    So, basically, what EVERY RPG company has been doing for the past forty or so years;.
    126 replies | 8741 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 30th June, 2019, 12:13 AM
    Let's be fair here. They've released, what, about a dozen books per year (or more) for the past 10 years. That's a frigging mountain of material. It's not unreasonable to want to update the system after that long, and that many hours of refinement. It's doubtful they'll go full on change. But, they do need to stanch the bleed of losing players to simply aging out. People move on from...
    126 replies | 8741 view(s)
    4 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 30th June, 2019, 12:02 AM
    epithet - to be honest, I find it hard to believe that you would think that this is a purely grammatical issue. It takes a special kind of myopia to look at gender roles in language and think, "Well, we'll ignore that massive cultural and historical baggage with this issue and focus entirely on the stuff that no one other than grammarians actually care about" and then stand back with wide eyed...
    1012 replies | 71096 view(s)
    7 XP
  • steenan's Avatar
    Saturday, 29th June, 2019, 09:18 AM
    Our long campaigns last for 20-30 sessions, 4-6 hours each. It translates to 1-2 IRL years. We have also played a few short (5-10 sessions) campaigns and a big number of single adventures (1-3 sessions). The campaigns generally last until they get an appropriate closure. None of our campaigns in the last 10 years fizzled and were abandoned halfway.
    47 replies | 2022 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 29th June, 2019, 04:34 AM
    I think it's a good idea to make the distinction between rules lawyer and what my group calls a rules guru. A rules guru is just someone who has an encyclopedic knowledge of the mechanics of the game and you can always ask her (in my group it's a her) for the rules and know that whatever she says is going to be right far, far more often than it's wrong. I LOVE rules gurus. Hug one today. ...
    95 replies | 3719 view(s)
    3 XP
  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Saturday, 29th June, 2019, 04:25 AM
    What do we call it when the GM subordinates the players' decision-points and/or the resolution mechanics' attendant outcomes to said GM's preconceived metaplot? And that's fine. But call it what it is. In fact, if you and your players are looking for that play experience, then being honest about what it is, openly analyzing the machinery of it, and getting better at deploying it should be a...
    59 replies | 2505 view(s)
    3 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 29th June, 2019, 04:16 AM
    No.
    1012 replies | 71096 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 29th June, 2019, 01:48 AM
    You've always been able to start a sentence with a preposition. It's ending sentences with prepositions that people refer to. :D
    1012 replies | 71096 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 28th June, 2019, 01:45 PM
    You are obviously playing the game entirely wrong dontchaknow? You aren't supposed to level that fast in classic D&D. You should still be second level after a hundred sessions. :D :uhoh: :p
    47 replies | 2022 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 28th June, 2019, 01:42 PM
    I believe, although I could be wrong, that someone was making a joke. :D
    1012 replies | 71096 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 28th June, 2019, 08:04 AM
    Umm, of course it is? Was there any question that the use of they as a singular pronoun isn't ideologically driven? That the whole point of the use is because of the ideological issues surrounding this? What did you think was driving this? Yes I am, and no I haven't. But, I have to admit, that's a right effective discussion strategy you've got going there. That's going to win...
    1012 replies | 71096 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 28th June, 2019, 05:27 AM
    With rapiers. Must not forget the rapiers.
    126 replies | 8741 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Friday, 28th June, 2019, 05:23 AM
    Meh. You'd almost think that every language in the world has this issue, other than it just being largely an English problem. I wonder how on earth all those other languages that don't use, or barely use, third person pronouns get along. Oh, noes. You might make a mistake because the writer isn't perfectly clear in pronoun use. The shock and horror that you might use something in a game...
    1012 replies | 71096 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Thursday, 27th June, 2019, 09:38 PM
    Other - needs to come in Fantasy Ground .mod format.
    27 replies | 988 view(s)
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  • Raunalyn's Avatar
    Wednesday, 26th June, 2019, 05:35 PM
    Look, Keanu is already a superhero. The only logical Marvel character that Keanu could ever play is... Keanu Reeves! Look, he's like a younger, better, more awesome Chuck Norris. He deserves his own Comic book franchise.
    24 replies | 906 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Wednesday, 26th June, 2019, 01:13 PM
    Hrm. Not sure how much I can add to this to be honest. I'm seeing where folks are coming from and I keep nodding my head as I'm reading. Frankly, thought, and perhaps this is just my own biases, something like this: basically sounds like a scene to me. As soon as you decide which of those options to go with, you have a scene. That you like a looser structure is perfectly fine. ...
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Wednesday, 26th June, 2019, 03:35 AM
    Let me start with: "I don't have much interest, if any at all, in this conversation...so I'm not particularly interested in getting drawn back in." However, I think I have some virtual ink to spill on the internet on this one. For my money, the two have significant differences in TTRPGs. In TTRPGs, I associate "scene" with "a discrete unit of play, whereby situational framing >...
    181 replies | 5530 view(s)
    4 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 11:46 PM
    Umm. Aren’t location and scene synonyms? As in “place where stuff happens “? What’s the difference?
    181 replies | 5530 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 11:19 PM
    We’re a bit longer. 3 hour sessions and generally about 50-80 sessions per campaign.
    47 replies | 2022 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 11:16 PM
    But as soon as the player tells you his intentions to go to the casino you know what the next scene is. It’s already established- go to the casino to confront Iron God Meng. How would the players even think to find a tailor? They have stated what they want to do. Do your players routinely change direction before the even start? But, in any event you have a scene - the casino. Whether you...
    181 replies | 5530 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 09:28 PM
    But, see, at least three other people - dragoner, Michael Silverbane and myself WOULD describe this as bog standard narration and a scene. The fact that you happen to be using an idiosyncratic definition of the word seems to be the major sticking point here. Had you actually posted something like this a long time ago, when asked repeatedly to do so, would have saved a LOT of time. So,...
    181 replies | 5530 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 02:15 PM
    Bedrockgames - you didn't answer my question. The PC's encounter an NPC that they have never met before. The reason isn't all that important, although that will obviously come up a bit later when resolving the situation. But, how do you convey information about the NPC to the players without any narration? What does that even look like? You even admit that you "describe him". What do...
    181 replies | 5530 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 11:08 AM
    Ok, umm, how does this work? You have an NPC that the players have never seen before in a place that they have never been before. Now, how do you explain the scene (ie narrate) to the players without actually describing the scene, describing the NPC or anything like that? But, to be fair, if that's the definition of narration that you're working from - that players are passive listeners to...
    181 replies | 5530 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 06:52 AM
    Meh, semantics. Scene, situation, it's the same thing. You have the characters, you have the NPC's and you have some sort of action going on. Nothing about narration has anything to do with how things resolve. The point is, you have to introduce that NPC bully. Which means you have to narrate the scene where that bully appears. The point is, you still have to narrate. It's kinda like...
    181 replies | 5530 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 24th June, 2019, 11:48 PM
    Umm, where did the situation come from? Who initiated the situation? Who set the location, the opponents (or allies or whatever is being reacted to)? Now, there are games where the answer to that might be "anyone at the table", but, outside of those games, by and large, it's the GM/DM who is setting the stage so to speak. Sure, the PC's open the door, but, it's the DM who describes what's...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 24th June, 2019, 11:41 PM
    Yeah, that's a better way of phrasing it. Sure, I'll agree with that.
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Monday, 24th June, 2019, 09:10 PM
    I'm with Aldarc here. I don't think the answer is a single general use Urban Fantasy TTRPGing system with theme/premise-neutral mechanics to rule them all (this almost always leads to an overwhelming GM presence in play trajectory to manufacture an experience...typically putting players in a significantly more passive position than in a game like Blades in the Dark). This is precisely why I...
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Monday, 24th June, 2019, 03:16 PM
    Ah ok. (I’m asking this out of a position of ignorance) So when someone refers to “Urban Fantasy” in TTRPGing, are they referring to “a malleable game/system without a tight play premise baked in so it can be drifted to (say) the modern focus of ‘paranormal romance’ or something similar?”
    101 replies | 4981 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 24th June, 2019, 03:14 PM
    Well, kinda sorta. Look at that description of the Dursley's above. That's adopting a very specific "voice". It's a sing songy story telling voice because the story is written for 10 year olds. It is a very deliberate choice. Your choice of a conversational tone is deliberate since you don't like a more prose style pattern. But, make no mistake, you are still narrating the scene. ...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 24th June, 2019, 09:28 AM
    Sorry, Pemerton, but, I'm really having trouble tracking the changes you are making here. Can you actually write out the paragraph that you think is more conversational? Trying to move back and forth between three different posts and two different pages means I am losing track of what you're trying to say. And, please, tone down the level of grammatical analysis. It's extremely difficult to...
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  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Monday, 24th June, 2019, 02:48 AM
    Something similar to that play anecdote that you're mentioning above happened in my 2nd 4e game that went 1-30. While that was a Bladesinger rather than a Fighter, it was all martial, so its applicable. It was mid-Paragon Tier. While the Druid and Rogue dealt with an endless tide of mooks, the Bladesinger was locked in a duel with the Captain of the Guard (CotG). The player wanted it to...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 24th June, 2019, 01:21 AM
    I can walk into your house and tell you which bedroom is a guest bedroom just by looking (assuming you have one). That's not really a stumbling block to me. But, effectively, pemerton, we're back to vocabulary differences. You're simply using simpler language. So, is it fair to say that the division, for you, between conversational and prose is vocabulary choice? After all, you didn't...
    181 replies | 5530 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Monday, 24th June, 2019, 12:36 AM
    And, something to remember is that the ship is coming sometime. So, making some defensive preparations and then holing up makes sense for the smugglers. They aren't terribly interested in fighting.
    7 replies | 413 view(s)
    3 XP
  • Manbearcat's Avatar
    Sunday, 23rd June, 2019, 09:34 PM
    Does Blades in the Dark not qualify as Urban Fantasy? Grimdark, cutthroat urban setting (Duskvol) - check Paranormal (overruneth and all kinds) - check Magic - check Factions/tribes embroiled in endless war to ascend hierarchy - check
    101 replies | 4981 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 23rd June, 2019, 03:48 AM
    Ah, now, there, I think is one of the bigger divides that's going on. For me, while dramatic pacing is one thing (I'll let them shank the villain too), but, in general game pacing is something I've very, very conscious of. Gaming, as it is, tends to have a lot of down time and anything I can do to speed things up is good IMO. Which means that things like boxed text, for example, are a huge...
    181 replies | 5530 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 23rd June, 2019, 03:43 AM
    I'm going to echo the others here. If you're feeling the time pinch, it might be a great idea just to buy a "campaign in a box" sort of module. One of the WotC adventure path offerings or something off the DM's Guild. Something you can basically just run from the book. And, while that's going on, you've bought yourself lots of breathing room for time to spend prepping your next campaign.
    39 replies | 1362 view(s)
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Sunday, 23rd June, 2019, 02:09 AM
    LOL. So, essentially, all Saelorn is seeing of this thread is Bedrockgames talking to himself? Unless Imaro somehow avoided the block hammer. ROTFLMAO. That has to be the WEIRDEST thread to see. :D :lol: Ok, so, yeah, Aldarc and Bedrockgames, I'd put things like diction, organization, that sort of stuff, under the umbrella of "presentation". How you get the information from A to B,...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 22nd June, 2019, 05:52 AM
    Now, this I can agree with. Unfortunately, in the other thread, I got shouted down for equating prose with presentation. I was told, in no uncertain terms, that how we presented the information isn't the issue, but, rather, it's all about the words. So, you can see why I might be a bit confused. Well, again, I might argue vocabulary is an issue in there. After all, it's not an every...
    181 replies | 5530 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 22nd June, 2019, 02:35 AM
    Wait, what? So, vocabulary IS the important distinction between conversational and prose language? Now I'm really confused. Frankly Aldarc, I'm really having trouble parsing your argument through the snark. Could you please, in simple terms, outline what your argument actually is then? Because, honestly, I wasn't trying to misrepresent anything. I honestly believed that you were...
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  • Hussar's Avatar
    Saturday, 22nd June, 2019, 01:48 AM
    Wow, you folks are actually engaging SAelorn in his metagaming rabbit hole? You guys are brave.
    181 replies | 5530 view(s)
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Tuesday, 2nd October, 2018

  • 07:29 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post Mearls On D&D's Design Premises/Goals
    Hussar, obviously I agree with you: it makes zero sense to me that the resolution of a foot race changes in any fundamental way because in one race the aim is to the first to cross the line and in the other the aim is to be the one to pick up the widget sitting on the finish line. (And does being the one who breaks the ribbon count as "direct opposition" in Maxperson's terms or not?)

Monday, 24th September, 2018


Tuesday, 28th August, 2018

  • 03:14 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post My Attempt to Define RPG's - RPG's aren't actually Games
    Creation is a prelude to play even if it occurs during play - that's the bit you can't seem to grasp here.You're mistaken - I understand what you're saying, I just know that it's not true. Here's one way I know it's not true: X is set up for Y entails that X occurs prior to Y entails that X is not simultaneous with Y. And also: X is a prelude to Y entails that X occurs prior to Y entails that X is not simultaneous with Y. Your equation of creation with set-up is leading you into obvious contradiction. And there's an obvious solution: abandon that equation, and actually look at what is happening at the table where the game is being played. The biggest obstacle to having serious discussions about how RPGs work is this tendency to insist on dogmatic frameworks that have no foundation in the full variety of RPG play. (Typically they idealised versions of a type of 70s or 80s D&D play. Which is weird in Hussar's case, because I know that he's played plenty of non-D&D RPGs.)
  • 03:03 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post My Attempt to Define RPG's - RPG's aren't actually Games
    ..., as part of playing the game, imagine a world in which these characters are inhabitants. A player's moves consist in declaring actions for this character, which aren't just moves in the traditional boardgame sense, but are also understood as intentions to change the fiction that this character is part of. Another, distinct set of "moves" consists in establishing the rst of the shared fiction beyond these characers and their players' action declarations. In most RPGs on the traditional model, the GM does this. The rules of the game (which may include various sorts of "mechanics", but may also confer direct authority on one participant to sauy what the shared fiction shall be) are used to help determine the outcomes of these moves.The self-quote is from the first page of this thread. I was the first poster in this thread to identify creation of a shared fiction as a key element in RPGing. That's not in dispute. What's in dispute is what I have bolded in the two quotes from Hussar: that creation is preparation for play rather than, itself, a key component of RPG play. No argument in favour of that proposition has been put forward in this thread. It's not true to my own experience. And it seems to rest on an unsound generalisation from two ways of playing D&D: (i) the GM draws a dungeon map and writes notes, and the heart of play is the players declaring moves that enable them to learn what the GM created and thereby make it true, in the fiction, that their PCs are looting the dungeon; (ii) the GM writes up a series of events - a scenario, like DL or any of dozens of post-DL modules/APs - and then the players "play through" the adventure. But as far as my own episodes of play, which I've posted an linked to are concerned: when I tell the players, ie my friends, who are sitting with me about a dining room table, "You're at a market in Hardby. A peddler of trinkets has an angel feather for sale. He says its from the Bright Desert," I'm not getting ready to pl...

Monday, 27th August, 2018

  • 12:27 AM - Lanefan mentioned Hussar in post My Attempt to Define RPG's - RPG's aren't actually Games
    ... response to failed Aura Reading check, that an angel feather is cursed). Here we disagree; I see pretty much all RPG creation as coming under set-up and certainly all RPG creation that comes from the GM. Play: declaring the Aura Reading and then having it fail via game mechanics Creation: deciding the feather is cursed in response to this failure, along with any associated narration thereof Play: whatever the player/PC does in response to this creation piece. Why and how do I make this distinction? That the feather is cursed is something that is and becomes a part of the setting and - taken retroactively - was therefore actually in place all along within the game world. That's set-up. And telling the players that they're at a market is not "the very definition of creating a scenario". In Moldvay Basic, a "scenario" is a premapped and pre-described dungeon, with some motivating backstory built in. In the DL modules, a "scenario" is a pre-authored sequence of events. Hussar has described scenarios by reference to events eg "wooing the widow". You are at a market. There is a seller of magical trinkets who claims to have an angel feather from the Bright Desert. What doyou do? is not a scenario. It's a bare situation. It's not "game creation" - it's playing the game (ie the GM saying stuff about the PCs' situation, as a prelude to and invitation to the players saying stuff about what their PCs do). You call it scene framing. I call it scenario creation. Same thing, and it's all set-up. Likewise You come upon a Large Steading that Reeks of Smoke and Worse. That turned out to be an invitation to make an ally of a giant shaman after trying to trick the giant chieftain by selling him his own ox. The existence of both ox and shaman were the result of successful player action declarations. Remind me what the "game creation" is here again, as opposed to the playing of the game?Creation, whether by player or GM, brought the ox and shaman into existence with...

Sunday, 26th August, 2018

  • 04:47 PM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post My Attempt to Define RPG's - RPG's aren't actually Games
    Well it's creating an essential element of the game, without which the game cannot be played. Er...telling the players that their PCs are at the Hardby market* is the very definition of creating a scenario. The players then take that scenario and interact with it (i.e. play through it) via their PCs: in this case someone looks for and finds a peddler of tokens and feathers and seeks to buy an angel feather, etc. * - along with, I have to assume, some descriptive narration and-or trope-based examples of what the PCs see there - the bustling crowds, the weather, some examples of goods and wares available, etc. I'll leave this one to Hussar , as that's his term not mine. In this particular example: the Hardby market (created by you, I assume) and Hardby itself along with whatever other parts of the Greyhawk setting you used (created by the Greyhawk authors, as modified by you). Creating the setting is, in an RPG, a part of creating the game. However, say it with me slowly: creation/set-up - does - not - always - have - to - occur - in - advance - of - play - to - still - be - creation/set-up.You're treating creation and set-up as synonyms, or at least as co-referring. But they're not. Some RPG set-up is not creation (eg choosing house rules, or optional rules, or whatever). And some RPG creation is not set-up (eg deciding, in response to failed Aura Reading check, that an angel feather is cursed). And telling the players that they're at a market is not "the very definition of creating a scenario". In Moldvay Basic, a "scenario" is a premapped and pre-described dungeon, with some motivating backstory built in. I...
  • 11:07 AM - Lanefan mentioned Hussar in post My Attempt to Define RPG's - RPG's aren't actually Games
    Building PCs insn't creating a scenario, or a game to "play through". Well it's creating an essential element of the game, without which the game cannot be played. Telling the players that their PCs are at the Hardby market is not creating a scenario, or a game to "play through". Er...telling the players that their PCs are at the Hardby market* is the very definition of creating a scenario. The players then take that scenario and interact with it (i.e. play through it) via their PCs: in this case someone looks for and finds a peddler of tokens and feathers and seeks to buy an angel feather, etc. * - along with, I have to assume, some descriptive narration and-or trope-based examples of what the PCs see there - the bustling crowds, the weather, some examples of goods and wares available, etc. What exactly is your claim about RPGs being "game creation engines", and how does that claim apply to the two examples I've given. I'll leave this one to Hussar , as that's his term not mine. What game was created in advance of play?In this particular example: the Hardby market (created by you, I assume) and Hardby itself along with whatever other parts of the Greyhawk setting you used (created by the Greyhawk authors, as modified by you). Creating the setting is, in an RPG, a part of creating the game. However, say it with me slowly: creation/set-up - does - not - always - have - to - occur - in - advance - of - play - to - still - be - creation/set-up. I've half a hunch that Maxperson and I are agreeing on this bit, if maybe not on much else. :) Lanefan
  • 05:11 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post My Attempt to Define RPG's - RPG's aren't actually Games
    Lanefan, Hussar Building PCs insn't creating a scenario, or a game to "play through". Telling the players that their PCs are at the Hardby market is not creating a scenario, or a game to "play through". What exactly is your claim about RPGs being "game creation engines", and how does that claim apply to the two examples I've given. What game was created in advance of play?

Saturday, 25th August, 2018

  • 06:38 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post My Attempt to Define RPG's - RPG's aren't actually Games
    ...rio being "played through". From the descriptions of the set-up - which are not missing anything - you can't even tell what happened next, let alone what had happened by the end of the scenario: you can't predict the NPCs, or the locations, or the actions. Nor could have I, or the players. before you can do more detailed attention to training the young son how to be a knight, you MUST create something to play off of."Something to play off" is not a scenario. It need not be anything more than a simple game element, which in this instance already existed - the son. "Playing off" is just another way of saying engaging the fiction. It doesn't have to mean playing through a scenario. Lanefan: I don't know why you're trying to persuade me that playing a RPG involves creating fiction. I think I was the first person to make that point in my thread. But creating fiction need not be preparing for play - as you say - nor need it be using the game creation engine to create a game - as Hussar says. It can just be playing a RPG.

Thursday, 23rd August, 2018

  • 11:37 PM - Chaosmancer mentioned Hussar in post Revised Ranger update
    @Hussar, your quote is at the bottom. Sorry for the long read, but I prefer multi-quoting to making multiple posts. I didn't imply it I said it. And it was accurate, as we were discussing topics which had already been discussed in the thread earlier, and you were asking for a list that had already been listed and discussed earlier. Why are you trying to imply or say you had read it? I was not attacking you, I was making an accurate observation that we were re-treading old ground. I never asked for a list. I stated that there are very few spells that actually allow you to add beasts to your party, because most spells that summon actually create fey. You decided to list a bunch of spells to prove me wrong, the majority of which did not add a beast to the party. Now, I'll grant, I've been in this thread for over a week and it stretches nearly 400 posts, we might have talked about how conjure animals creates fey before and I might have forgotten. I don't have a steel-trap mind to remember ...
  • 01:36 PM - Maxperson mentioned Hussar in post My Attempt to Define RPG's - RPG's aren't actually Games
    ...like a great many other games. B is where we disagree. Creating a secret door is not set-up. It's creation, yes, but the only thing that happens prior to the player in a No Myth game creating a secret door in game play is the thought to do so. Thought is not set-up. If it was, then literally all game play in or out of RPGs would be set-up. Even something as simple as me having my PC say to a guard, "How's the wife and kids?" involves me thinking of what to say before hand, and creating that dialogue, which could be considered to be interaction set-up. Set-up involves more than just a thought process immediately before creation. Yes, this is true. But what shuffling cards for a card game does not include is having to draw and paint some new and different cards for each game even during play, which is more analagous to what happens in an RPG when background and-or setting are (in some cases) prepared beforehand and (in all cases) expanded on during play. Okay, but other than @Hussar attributing that to me via several Strawmen, nobody I can remember has said that those are equivalent forms of set-up. The rules say to draw something, as opposed to trying to act it out or give synonyms or move pawn-to-king-4. As a result of this, you draw something (and yeah, drawing for Cagney would stump me too). And as I mentioned to @Hussar, the D&D rules say to create a scenario. Another difference between Pictionary and any RPG that just occurred to me: in Pictionary, any creation that happens is temporary: the pictures you draw for that particular round have no influence or use beyond that round. Your picture of Lacey, for example, won't be at all relevant two rounds later when you're trying to represent Hogwarts School in a drawing; and when you play again next week will have probably long since been tossed in the recycle bucket. Maybe so, but they will still be laughing at my horribly bad drawing of Cagney Even my stick figures end up lopsided. ;)
  • 12:48 PM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post My Attempt to Define RPG's - RPG's aren't actually Games
    ...ny, the bits that were exciting, the bits that were surprising, etc. Even while a campaign is still on-foot, individual bits of fiction created for it might cease to be relevant. In a Moldvay Basic game, if the PCs enter a dungeon and have a random encounter with 2 giant rats, it's highly unlikely that particular bit of fiction will ever matter to anything that happens again. That might be true even of a random encounter with 2 hobgoblins! - depending on the approach the GM takes to integrating random encounters into the non-random components of the dungeon setting. Trying to analyse RPGs through the metaphysical status of their fictions is in my view a dead end, as well as being an almost surefire way to make assertions that won't hold true. (Maybe she's not a widow at all but everyone just thought she was . . . that could happen easily enough in my game, and even more easily in a game with time travel, or memory horror, or dimension hopping, or whatever else aspects to it.) Hussar is on the right track by focusing on the process of play rather than its product: the fiction produced by playing a RPG isn't inherently different from any other fiction produced in some other way, and if we go more abstract, the "artwork" produced by playing a RPG isn't inherently different from any other "artwork" produced in some other way, including by the play of some other game. His mistake is to generalise a process that is true for most D&D play (both pre-and-post DL), and for quite a bit of play that is pretty similar to D&D, but that isn't true of RPGing in general.

Tuesday, 21st August, 2018

  • 01:18 AM - Ovinomancer mentioned Hussar in post My Attempt to Define RPG's - RPG's aren't actually Games
    ...interesting gray area. A true TotM collective-storytelling or pass-the-conch game would be perhaps the one type of game where prep and play largely become one and the same once play begins. An RPG using story creation mechanics as in your example would lead to a bizarre situation where play causes prep to happen - the use of the mechanic is play but the result kinda falls under prep! Further engagement with the door thus created is, obviously, play. How is it obviously play? The nature of the door being able to be opened seems like it would be prep, because someone has to create that bit of fiction. Is it locked? Prep. Does it open inward or outward? Prep. Pin hinges or pivot? Prep. All of these things, according to your framework, are prep. The play is... not sure what the play is, when so much is prep. Your framework is what's bizarre, not the play description. Absent the requirement to define the creation of fiction happening during play as prep so as to save Hussar's definition, the bizarre drops away and you just have a game.

Monday, 20th August, 2018

  • 02:02 PM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post My Attempt to Define RPG's - RPG's aren't actually Games
    ....This is bollocks. A player declaring an attack for his/her PC is not prep - it's playing the game. Yesterday, in the session that I ran, at one point we had to work out whether or not one of the PCs was married or widowed. That became relevant because of events that had happened in play - namely, the emergence of an opportunity to woo a recently widowed noblewoman. That is not preparing to play, it's playing the game. It's not "pseudo-preparation" either - if the game is not on rails, then no one knows what might happen during play, and hence what fiction might need to be established as part of play. Another major difference in your system is that it's not just you doing these on-the-fly prep steps; your players are doing some of it as well, probably without realizing it. Contrast this with a more traditional game where the DM does nearly all the prep, whether ahead of time or on the fly.What's your point here? That I'm not playing RPGs? That the definition of RPGs that you and Hussar are advocating doesn't capture the way I play RPGs (which is not terribly radical as soon as you look beyond the parameters of traditional D&D RPGing)? If the former, I disagree - what do you think I'm doing, then, when I think I'm playing a RPG? If the latter, well that's my point - the two of you are advocating a definition that only fits a limited range of approaches to RPGing, namely, those in which the GM designs a scenario or dungeon in advance and then runs the players through it. But that's not the only way that RPGs are played. Other games don't have this, which is all I'm trying to point out.Other non-storytelling games don't have authorship of fiction. That's verging on tautology. But they do involve steps that replicate steps that might be part of set-up - I already gave an example of drawing a new hand of cards during the course of the play of a board game.
  • 07:27 AM - MichaelSomething mentioned Hussar in post My Attempt to Define RPG's - RPG's aren't actually Games
    So according to Hussar , Super Mario Maker wouldn't count as a game either?
  • 02:58 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post My Attempt to Define RPG's - RPG's aren't actually Games
    Lanefan, Hussar - the idea that one is "setting up" a game while playing it is silly. Yesterday before our RPG session a few of us (not me) were playing a boardgame. After each turn the player had to draw some cards. Is that "set up" that happens at the same time as playing the game? Or is it just playing the game? If the former, then Hussar's distinction between board games and RPGs collapses. If the latter, then why are RPGs being analysed differently? when the PCs in my game, for example, decide to grill some random shopkeeper for information and I-as-DM suddenly have to dream up a random shopkeeper in response, that dreaming-it-up bit is in fact a part of game set-up. Game play, from my side, is when I role-play this shopkeeper as he interacts with the PCs. Put another way, as the random shopkeeper is a) in theory going to be the same whether prepped now or prepped a long time ago, and b) in theory now becomes a part of my game's setting, dreaming him up right now falls just as much und...

Saturday, 18th August, 2018

  • 08:12 PM - Lanefan mentioned Hussar in post My Attempt to Define RPG's - RPG's aren't actually Games
    Hussar - I don't understand why you describe one aspect of playing the game as creating the game. When I think of "creating a game" I think of game design. But when I decide in the Traveller game that Lt Li (the initial patron) is part of a bioweapons conspiracy, that's not game design. Is it? I think what Hussar is saying (and I know he'll correct me if I'm wrong :) ) is that there's more to creating the game in an RPG than simply designing the rules; and that your-as-GM decision that Lt Li is part of a conspiracy comes under game creation rather than game play. In more clear-cut situations, the game creation and set-up phase is pretty much finished before game play begins: you don't start making chess moves before all the pieces are on the board where they should be, and a traditional DM doesn't start running an adventure before she's got it all mapped out and stocked. But in the way you play RPGs I'd say the creation and set-up phase never really ends and very much overlaps with the ac...
  • 12:28 PM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post My Attempt to Define RPG's - RPG's aren't actually Games
    Hussar - I don't understand why you describe one aspect of playing the game as creating the game. When I think of "creating a game" I think of game design. But when I decide in the Traveller game that Lt Li (the initial patron) is part of a bioweapons conspiracy, that's not game design. Is it? The approach to RPGing where your description seems most apt is classic dungeoncrawling, where mapping and stocking the dungeon is highly analogous to designing a (very complex) board for a boardgame. But I don't think most of your RPGing looks much like that, or anyone else's really these days except for an old school or OSR minority.

Thursday, 16th August, 2018

  • 10:14 AM - pemerton mentioned Hussar in post My Attempt to Define RPG's - RPG's aren't actually Games
    ...ses, and we came up with a reason why he was also heading to the tournament (it involved horses, but I can't remember now whether he was looking for buyers, or sellers, or just to admire the many horses that would be on display). I used a total of three "episodes" - what in D&D terms would be considered "mini-scenarios" of 1 to 3 pages each - to provide material for the session (both fiction and stats). One I had read before and so knew what I was looking for when I hunted through the core rulebook to find it. The two others are in the "Episodes" supplement which I hadn't read before, and I chose one on the basis of authorship + theme (Kenneth Hite, "The Wild Hunt") and the other based on theme alone (it was a tournament scenario, and I can't remember the author's name but it wasn't someone I recognised). Elaborating on the scenarios - eg providing NPC motivations and responses in the tournament - and connecting them together was something that I did as we went along. Contra Hussar's claim, we were able to open the rulebook, read it, or at least the relevant bits of it - obviously it's longer than most boardgame rulebooks - and then start playing. This is exactly the sort of play experience that makes me think that Hussar is write to focus on scenario as a key element of RPGing but is making a mistake in seeing it as an intermediate step that takes "game creation engine" to "game". Scenario is key because shared fiction is key - and the rules of a RPG can tell you when you need to establish some shared fiction, and they can tell you subject matters for that fiction, and they can even give suggestions for that fiction (eg as the Prince Valiant "episodes" do). But in the end the people at the table have to actually construct that fiction, because that's part of the core activity of playing a RPG.

Tuesday, 14th August, 2018

  • 06:05 PM - Eric V mentioned Hussar in post Revised Ranger update
    Hussar, I agreed with you earlier that the class works. I use it myself. I am concerned, however, that it might be a bit over-the-top in some of its abilities, and wanted the professionals (with more expertise in this area than me) to give it another pass, like it was originally intended. That desire is not coming from a min-maxing place, and it's boorish to assume that it does.


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Monday, 17th June, 2019

  • 02:03 PM - 5ekyu quoted Hussar in post Chaotic Good Is The Most Popular Alignment!
    But, again, that scout has to report to someone. You just said that they never rely on authority - so, that scout goes off, scouts, finds information, and then keeps it to himself because, well, what's the point of telling those incompetent idiots, they won't actually do anything about it? Remember, this person places no value on the well being of others. That scout could not care less that his companions get butchered except that it places him in danger. So, the scout goes out, sees something really dangerous, and decides that discretion is the better part of valor and buggers off without telling anyone. Why? Because he does not value loyalty and only values his own skin. I'm actually a bit surprised by the vigour in which folks are defending chaotics. Chaotics are, by definition, unreliable. A CN is CN BECAUSE he's unreliable.Again, extremism. Never relies on authority does not mean working as scout and not reporting info back. It doesnt mean nuts. It foesnt mesn crazy. It doesn...
  • 01:58 PM - Maxperson quoted Hussar in post Chaotic Good Is The Most Popular Alignment!
    I would argue that alignment is more descriptive. You are X alignment because of what you do. What you do is based on your personality and what you believe, though. There are many, many reasons why someone would not report an orcish army, and you can find people of all alignments among them.
  • 01:24 PM - Maxperson quoted Hussar in post Chaotic Good Is The Most Popular Alignment!
    Where I do find it interesting is in alignment archetypes. Wolverine makes a pretty good CG archetype, I think we'd agree. But, what's a chaotic neutral archetype? The only one I could think of was Q from Star Trek. And, well, everyone keeps telling me that CN is totally reliable and completely okay with working with groups, so, Q obviously isn't CN by that standard. So, what character would you see as being typical of a CN alignment? River from Firefly. I've seen a few others, but I can't remember them.
  • 01:18 PM - Maxperson quoted Hussar in post Chaotic Good Is The Most Popular Alignment!
    Are you kidding? Falling asleep on watch is not an uncommon thing. It doesn't make people insane. It makes them unreliable. My personal rest time is more important than your safety. Snore. If the PC is unable to stay awake, alignment has nothing to do with it. If the PC is deliberately going to sleep, it's not "your safety," it's "our safety" or more directly "my safety," which is a fairly crazy position to take.
  • 01:07 PM - Oofta quoted Hussar in post Chaotic Good Is The Most Popular Alignment!
    But, again, that scout has to report to someone. You just said that they never rely on authority - so, that scout goes off, scouts, finds information, and then keeps it to himself because, well, what's the point of telling those incompetent idiots, they won't actually do anything about it? Remember, this person places no value on the well being of others. That scout could not care less that his companions get butchered except that it places him in danger. So, the scout goes out, sees something really dangerous, and decides that discretion is the better part of valor and buggers off without telling anyone. Why? Because he does not value loyalty and only values his own skin. I'm actually a bit surprised by the vigour in which folks are defending chaotics. Chaotics are, by definition, unreliable. A CN is CN BECAUSE he's unreliable. And other people keep saying that reliability has little to do with alignment. Not reporting that there is an orcish invasion coming is not chaotic, it...
  • 10:29 AM - Lanefan quoted Hussar in post Why are we okay with violence in RPGs?
    In a game where you GET EXPERIENCE FOR KILLING THINGS, combat is pretty much expected no? When you get REWARDED FOR MURDER, then violence is expected in the game, no? I would LOVE to see these mythical AD&D tables where even 40% of encounters were not resolved by combat.That 60% or 80% or even 99.5% of encounters were/are resolved by combat is not the point, at least not the one I'm getting at. My point is that in 1e by RAW all that combat would still, in a typical published module* and given typical play, only represent about [20%? 30%?] of the x.p. you'd usually earn for the adventure; with a very small percentage coming from non-combat encounters and the vast majority (i.e. all the rest) coming from treasure. * - possible exceptions being the G1-2-3 series; 1e Giants absolutely bleed x.p.
  • 10:27 AM - Bedrockgames quoted Hussar in post Why are we okay with violence in RPGs?
    Ok, ok. I surrender. 1e players were renowned throughout the hobby, throughout all the history of RPG's as the greatest, most wonderful roleplayers of all time who never once picked up a d20 unless they absolutely had to and solved nearly every single encounter through spectacular exposition and wonderous words of wisdom. Now, with the revisionist history out of the way, can we get back to reality where D&D=hack and slash was pretty much common knowledge, even back in the day. I mean, good grief, look at the flack Dragonlance gets for trying to inject a story into the game. Heck, among the AD&D crowd, storygame is a four letter word. It constantly baffles and befuddles just how far people will go to try to present D&D as the epitome of roleplaying with no drawbacks and all criticism must be folks just doing it wrong. Sheesh. In a game where you GET EXPERIENCE FOR KILLING THINGS, combat is pretty much expected no? When you get REWARDED FOR MURDER, then violence is expected in the ga...
  • 09:04 AM - 5ekyu quoted Hussar in post Chaotic Good Is The Most Popular Alignment!
    But, reasking the question. If there is functionally no difference between LG and CN, what's the point of alignment? It's not even descriptive at that point because the descriptors are meaningless if opposite descriptors can apply to the same thing. Where I do find it interesting is in alignment archetypes. Wolverine makes a pretty good CG archetype, I think we'd agree. But, what's a chaotic neutral archetype? The only one I could think of was Q from Star Trek. And, well, everyone keeps telling me that CN is totally reliable and completely okay with working with groups, so, Q obviously isn't CN by that standard. So, what character would you see as being typical of a CN alignment?"If there is functionally no difference between LG and CN, what's the point of alignment?" Is anyone here other than you claiming there is no functional difference between LG and CN? So, going with one of your recent cases - on watch - itsbperfdftly gone for a CN to be very reliable on watch duty, if that is...
  • 08:28 AM - Charlaquin quoted Hussar in post Chaotic Good Is The Most Popular Alignment!
    But, reasking the question. If there is functionally no difference between LG and CN, what's the point of alignment? It's not even descriptive at that point because the descriptors are meaningless if opposite descriptors can apply to the same thing. Where I do find it interesting is in alignment archetypes. Wolverine makes a pretty good CG archetype, I think we'd agree. But, what's a chaotic neutral archetype? The only one I could think of was Q from Star Trek. And, well, everyone keeps telling me that CN is totally reliable and completely okay with working with groups, so, Q obviously isn't CN by that standard. So, what character would you see as being typical of a CN alignment? I mean, when push came to shove, Q worked with the enterprise crew and helped them save that one planet from the asteroid. Once working with a group was in his own self-interest, he did it. It's not that CN is necessarily reliable, it's just that nothing prevents CN from being reliable, if that's what suits t...
  • 06:39 AM - Maxperson quoted Hussar in post Why are we okay with violence in RPGs?
    Like a lot of things AD&D, it was pretty schizophrenic. For example, while you can talk about xp for "tricking" monsters being in the 1e DMG, you also have the training rules. A fighter that didn't fight was actively penalized by being forced to take longer to train and spending far, far more money on training, for example. In 2e, while there were "bonus Xp tables" again, fighters ONLY gained bonus xp for killing stuff. You focus on tricking monsters, but ignore that it talks about avoiding/disarming traps as well. There are no monsters(typically) involved with traps, and yet the DM is supposed to come up with an encounter level for them in order to assign non-combat XP. Add to that the published modules of the day, which again, leads to a VERY schizophrenic experience of 1e where the DMG advocates one thing and the modules pretty much entirely ignore the DMG, and it's very easy to see why murderhobo play was pretty common. Modules are a different beast. In order to appeal to the wid...
  • 06:17 AM - billd91 quoted Hussar in post Why are we okay with violence in RPGs?
    It was pretty clear the implication that combat was pretty strongly expected. I notice it doesn’t say anything about seeking out combat. What you highlighted could easily be expected behavior at the point combat has been rendered unavoidable. IOW, all that stuff that isn't killing and looting is "conducive to non-game boredom". Or, you know, the stuff that isn’t adventuring (which includes other stuff like doping out riddles and traps, exploring, etc. You’re way too hung up on “killing and looting”. You should get that looked at...
  • 02:41 AM - Oofta quoted Hussar in post Chaotic Good Is The Most Popular Alignment!
    For one, following the laws of the land is not what lawful good is about. Lawful Neutral? Maybe. But, the good aspect of LG means judging laws based on morality and acting accordingly. What about LG would imply that they have to follow all the laws? I was responding to MaxPerson who was stating that a LG person would not free slaves if slavery was the law of the land. He stated that made them chaotic for ignoring a law. At the same time ignoring a law that said it was illegal to worship their deity could somehow be ignored. I disagree with that sentiment, that's all. LG doesn't mean you obey all laws if you believe the law is significantly immoral or unjust.
  • 02:05 AM - doctorbadwolf quoted Hussar in post Chaotic Good Is The Most Popular Alignment!
    Honestly, that's how I view it. @Lanefan's "breaking in period" makes sense to me. Yes, I would view it that way. Chaotic good gets the pass because, well, being good, the character still values the life and well being of others. Think Wolverine from the X-men. Disobeys orders, often goes off on his own and is frankly a menace to the team, but, generally well intentioned and often acts in other character's best interests. A Chaotic Neutral? Why on earth would I want that on the team? The alignment is diametrically opposed to everything that a team represents. For one, following the laws of the land is not what lawful good is about. Lawful Neutral? Maybe. But, the good aspect of LG means judging laws based on morality and acting accordingly. What about LG would imply that they have to follow all the laws? ---- And, @5ekyu's idea of whims. You own definition states that whims are illogical - they cannot be explained. ---- Lastly, it's this whole "well chaotic can be just...
  • 01:57 AM - doctorbadwolf quoted Hussar in post Chaotic Good Is The Most Popular Alignment!
    How does unreliable = lunacy? Lots and LOTS of people are unreliable. That doesn't make them crazy. I've been accused several times here of going to extremes, but, all I've said is that a CN character is unreliable. That's pretty much, AFAIC, the defining trait of a CN character - that they will follow their whims, not the wishes of the group. That doesn't make someone insane. Just selfish and unreliable. Again, if your character is 100% reliable, never acts impulsively and is 100% worthy of trust, how is this character CN? What about this character makes him or her CN? To me, the hallmark of chaotics is that they are unreliable. That's what chaotic MEANS. You are literally the only person imagining an argument involving someone that is “100% reliable”, etc.
  • 01:46 AM - 5ekyu quoted Hussar in post Chaotic Good Is The Most Popular Alignment!
    Honestly, that's how I view it. Lanefan's "breaking in period" makes sense to me. Yes, I would view it that way. Chaotic good gets the pass because, well, being good, the character still values the life and well being of others. Think Wolverine from the X-men. Disobeys orders, often goes off on his own and is frankly a menace to the team, but, generally well intentioned and often acts in other character's best interests. A Chaotic Neutral? Why on earth would I want that on the team? The alignment is diametrically opposed to everything that a team represents. For one, following the laws of the land is not what lawful good is about. Lawful Neutral? Maybe. But, the good aspect of LG means judging laws based on morality and acting accordingly. What about LG would imply that they have to follow all the laws? ---- And, 5ekyu's idea of whims. You own definition states that whims are illogical - they cannot be explained. ---- Lastly, it's this whole "well chaotic can be just ...

Sunday, 16th June, 2019

  • 08:06 PM - 5ekyu quoted Hussar in post Chaotic Good Is The Most Popular Alignment!
    I disagree. If your character is consistent, reliable, dependable and never impulsive, in what way is that character chaotic? What about any of those descriptors would lead an observer to the conclusion that this character is chaotic? As far as “policing” goes, I’m not really sure where you are getting that. I guess my question to the player would be the same as my question to you - if this character never does anything that would be described as chaotic, then how is this character chaotic? If the chaotic character acts exactly the same as the lawful character then why bother with the distinction?"- if this character never does anything that would be described as chaotic, then how is this character chaotic?" Just to be clear - has anyone but you posted the notion of a character claiming chaotic that NEVER foes snything chaotic? It seems like there is some leap from over a wide gulf of "mostly".
  • 08:02 PM - 5ekyu quoted Hussar in post Chaotic Good Is The Most Popular Alignment!
    Freedom and personal freedom are not the same thing. I was speaking of acting on whims. Whims, by definition, are illogical and often unreliable. If you never actually act on whims, you aren't really driven by whims which means you aren't chaotic. No, I'd call him mistaken. But following laws isn't the definition of lawful."Whims, by definition, are illogical and often unreliable." No, not really... "a sudden desire or change of mind, especially one that is unusual or unexplained." Nothing about illogical or unreliable there. Even capricious isnt requiring illogic. Why did you buy it? I liked it. But its green. You usually hate green. Yeah but it struck my fancy. But the key is, eith alignment edspecially, you are not required to be 100% chaotic in every aspect of your life. I can be reliable and non-whimsical about say "saving lives" or "keeping my word (when given)" and still be quite whimsical at many many other times. I mean, whimsical and chaotic isnt some compulsion ...
  • 05:13 PM - doctorbadwolf quoted Hussar in post Chaotic Good Is The Most Popular Alignment!
    I disagree. If your character is consistent, reliable, dependable and never impulsive, in what way is that character chaotic? What about any of those descriptors would lead an observer to the conclusion that this character is chaotic? As far as “policing” goes, I’m not really sure where you are getting that. I guess my question to the player would be the same as my question to you - if this character never does anything that would be described as chaotic, then how is this character chaotic? If the chaotic character acts exactly the same as the lawful character then why bother with the distinction? you seem to think that the chaotic alignment imposes severe mental instability on a character. That is not the case. It’s as simple as that, really. You also continue to invent arguments to refute, instead of addressing what I and others are actually putting in our posts. That isn’t useful. A chaotic character can work as part of a team, because a chaotic character isn’t some sort of comic...
  • 04:14 PM - coolAlias quoted Hussar in post Chaotic Good Is The Most Popular Alignment!
    I disagree. If your character is consistent, reliable, dependable and never impulsive, in what way is that character chaotic? What about any of those descriptors would lead an observer to the conclusion that this character is chaotic? I think this all boils down to a fundamental disagreement over what the word Chaotic means in terms of alignment. You seem to be of the opinion that being Chaotic is like being a kleptomaniac - both require the character to follow their impulses with little regard for the consequences. Myself and others are of the opinion that Chaotic is NOT like being a kleptomaniac - one is basic motivation that can easily be overridden by other factors such as maintaining friendships, fear of punishment, etc., while one is basically a mental disorder. Neither opinion is factually wrong - this is a game of make-believe, after all - but can you see how our interpretation might make the Chaotic alignments a little more acceptable as part of an adventuring group? Because you'...
  • 03:48 PM - Oofta quoted Hussar in post Chaotic Good Is The Most Popular Alignment!
    I disagree. If your character is consistent, reliable, dependable and never impulsive, in what way is that character chaotic? What about any of those descriptors would lead an observer to the conclusion that this character is chaotic? Being consistent has nothing to do with alignment. A chaotic person may live by their own rules and have a complete disregard for authority while still acknowledging that they have to follow the laws of the land or suffer the consequences. My character can be impulsive without being disruptive, reliable without being lawful. What is it about alignment that makes you think they can't make friendships and long lasting bonds? That they can't accept that they're better off working with a group instead of as a lone wolf? Chaotic does not mean mentally unstable. As far as what outside observers see, I don't see why it matters. Let's take a scenario where the group is in a kingdom run by orcs and the group has discovered the orcs have a large number of hum...


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