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Voting for 2019 ENnies Is Live! Thursday, 11th July, 2019 01:59 AM

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Monday, 9th June, 2014

  • 04:50 AM - Hussar mentioned pickin_grinnin in post the Hexer, AWESOME!...oh no I take that back
    On pickin_grinnin's Dirt farmer character. This sort of thing gets resolved if you don't allow the players to make their character's in isolation. I really believe in the "group template" sort of character generation, where every character must have real ties to at least two other characters and no character can have ties to all other PC's. As soon as you do this, you stop people from making lame duck characters. The "off the wall" character has to have ties to the other PC's, and, if the other players are willing, can join the group because of those ties. But if the rest of the group says no, then, well, this character just isn't suited for this campaign.

Friday, 16th May, 2014


Thursday, 15th May, 2014

  • 10:02 AM - Fetfreak mentioned pickin_grinnin in post Help with 17th century Europe adventure plots!
    pickin_grinnin Awesome. I think I have good idea of what I want to introduce in the game and what not. I also wanted to introduce a new minor mechanic to the game. A system of belief and skepticism. The idea is that if you are a believer (of any sort) you can more easily fall under the influence of a curse even though they don't really exist. And this could result in manner of a strong headaches and mild fevers. In return a blessing from your favored spiritual guide (priest) would result in a beneficial effects like a moral boost in battle or saving throw. A skeptic would receive different benefits and penalties through the game. Like a bonus to a saving throw against mind affecting drugs and so on. All would be in realms of plausible I guess. I'm still working on it.

Friday, 9th May, 2014

  • 01:59 AM - Hussar mentioned pickin_grinnin in post So what do you think is wrong with Pathfinder? Post your problems and we will fix it.
    ...venture. The problem is that a lot of players and DMs play Pathfinder and D&D like a wargame with some roleplaying mixed in, which results in ever significant action requiring a dice roll. If you play it as a roleplaying game with some mechanics for figuring out the things that can't be handled through roleplaying alone, you get a whole different game with a lot more variety. Let's go back to the original point shall we? I'd rephrase the above in this way: Lots of players and DM's play Pathfinder and D&D with in a very freeform manner which results in a very enjoyable game for that table, capable of creating a great experience, but extremely difficult to replicate at any other table since the thing that makes this great is the synergy between those specific players and that specific DM. Change the variables, either on the player side or the DM side, and the results are very different. Which makes it a difficult thing to talk about across groups because the things that pickin_grinnin does that work at his table, or the things that Crothian did at his table, may or may not work at another table, but, since actually identifying those elements would be virtually impossible due to the idiosyncrasies of the individual tables, it's not terribly useful to the conversation. It should never, ever be a problem to play a game by the rules. If playing the game by the rules gives bad results, then those rules should be changed. I should't have to ignore the rules in order to play the game. At least, that's how I feel about having rules in the game. They are there to be used. Telling me to ignore the rules, without actually being able to tell me which rules to ignore and when, doesn't help me. How can it?

Thursday, 8th May, 2014


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Thursday, 11th July, 2019

  • 08:38 PM - Mercador quoted pickin_grinnin in post Voting for 2019 ENnies Is Live!
    I don't see anything about that on their website. Where did you hear that? One of the companies I've worked younger was trying for awards each year, had to pay a fee for each participation. Glad they don't have to here, thanks Morrus for the clarification.

Friday, 16th November, 2018

  • 10:07 PM - Henry quoted pickin_grinnin in post Staring Directly Into the Invisible Sun -- A Review
    I am interested in the world, adventures, etc., but there is no way I am going to spend that much on a single rpg. It's a pity that they don't offer a less resource intensive version of the game, or at least a "world of" book. Given what I read of Monte Cook's pitch during the original Kickstarter, I believe a less resource intensive version of the game would defeat the purpose of the game. His original stated intent was to produce a serious premium product, much in the vein of like the TSR boxed sets of old, but even more premium that those. Much like someone can produce a Bic pen for 50 cents, or a Gold- and Platinum- plated pen that was engineered for premium balance while holding and writing for $1,000.00, this was the latter while current gaming products are the former. Note that even now, other companies are getting into this (such as the Beadle and Grimm's Waterdeep stuff in partnership with WotC, or the MInd Flayer and Red Dragon trophies from Wizkids), whereas this was one of the pioneer...

Wednesday, 10th October, 2018

  • 10:27 PM - Celebrim quoted pickin_grinnin in post D&D 3.5 - magic item questions
    1) In D&D 3.5 (not Pathfinder), if I had a magic user from a different class make a wand for me, loaded with one of his classes' spells, could I still use it? 1) No, in general, you can't use a wand created by a different class to cast arbitrary spells from that class. Wands are spell-trigger items, and to use a spell-trigger item you must have the spell on your own class list. So, unless 'Spell Storing Item' appeared on your own class list, you could not use a 'Wand of Spell Storing Item'. Moreover, even if you could, I don't think a 'Wand of Spell Storing Item' would work like you think. 2) Four times the combined cost of an amulet of natural weapons, an amulet of speed, and an amulet of spell storing.

Saturday, 6th October, 2018

  • 07:30 AM - Lanefan quoted pickin_grinnin in post Mearls On D&D's Design Premises/Goals
    Once you got to 3 and 3e, though, there was a shift in tone, both from the company itself and within the player base. The rules became more complex, and (in my experience) rules lawyering became a bigger issue in general. "Optimized builds" became a bigger thing, mainly because more complex systems make that more of a possibility. I can't speak for everyone, but in my experience rules lawyering became a bigger issue in most places. I started seeing more conflict between DMs and players when it came to attitudes towards RAW and RAI, too. I got the sense that Wizards of the Coast were starting to put a little more emphasis on the idea of D&D being played in a similar fashion from table to table, too. It was the introduction of league play that really cemented that idea, though. League play, in the form of the RPGA, had already been around for ages at that point...and had already been causing the same kind of unification-vs.-table by table disputes and headaches. What made the difference with W...
  • 06:11 AM - ad_hoc quoted pickin_grinnin in post Mearls On D&D's Design Premises/Goals
    This situation makes things very difficult for Wizards of the Coast. Since D&D is the most well-known and most played rpg, people tend to view it as a system that has something for everyone. It isn't a generic system, though, and a lot of people who play it remember a time when fewer people thought that the rules were cast in iron. There is often a big difference in expectations and general philosophy between people who played in the pre-3e days, those who got their start with 3e/3.5e/Pathfinder, and those who are coming into the hobby after a lifetime of playing videogames. I agree with your post, I just want to pick this bit out. I think there are a large group of people playing 5e who are new to RPGs and haven't played many videogames.

Saturday, 15th September, 2018

  • 09:09 PM - Rya.Reisender quoted pickin_grinnin in post New Survey
    I did the whole survey and answered all the questions honestly. One thing that really stood out is that I'm obviously NOT the audience they are going for. It is pretty obvious that they are trying to figure out how to expand the brand more, beyond the ttrpg books, and I was never interested in that, even back in the late 70s. Yeah I pretty much put "Not interested" everywhere too. Then selected "other" and mentioned that one thing I'd actually buy would be the rule books in PDF version so I can word search through them.

Friday, 14th September, 2018

  • 03:54 PM - Sir Brennen quoted pickin_grinnin in post There's A New Edition of Savage Worlds Coming!
    Things like that aren't enough to make me want to put out the money to buy an all new core rulebook. Once the changes come out, I will just homebrew them into my existing game, if I like them. I would just break down and buy the new rulebook if it was at a better price point, but the types of things they have been talking about just aren't enough to make it worth that much money to me. Well, they’ve also said there’s going to be new stuff as well. But the rules changes will be made available for free for people like yourself who don’t want to pay for the (admittedly more expensive) new edition

Tuesday, 17th October, 2017

  • 02:27 PM - Xaelvaen quoted pickin_grinnin in post Frank Mentzer's Worlds of Empyrea Kickstarter to be Rebooted!
    To be honest, requiring NDAs on a project that has already gone to the Kickstarter point comes across as either wanting to play up some nonexistent mysteriousness for marketing purposes or grossly overestimating the value of the project. I was a part of the original Numenera Kickstarter, and backed high enough to be a beta tester - had to hand mail some signed and printed NDAs to Mr. Cook just to participate, so it's not uncommon at all for Kickstarters to still use NDAs, especially in cases like that. I'd imagine, all larger-named kickstarters have NDAs for their staff, even if there isn't a beta-testing period for the fans/contributors.

Monday, 16th October, 2017

  • 01:07 AM - Ath-kethin quoted pickin_grinnin in post Frank Mentzer's Worlds of Empyrea Kickstarter to be Rebooted!
    I no longer back any rpg Kickstarters if the majority of the book hasn't already been written and if there's not a lot of specific information about the game setting on the Kickstarter page. I am also on this train. I backed Dragon Kings due to faith in Tim Brown and found the final product unusable (not to mention the cheap-out dice that bore little resemblance to those I upped my pledge for). I backed The Lost Citadel and it shocked me that the creators seemed amazed that people interested in a roleplaying supplement wanted examples of what was going to be there for the roleplaying game, not fiction snippets. I loves me some Ari Marmell, but I expect the final book to be a pretty-looking paperweight. And I very much doubt it will be done by its promised ship date. Give me examples or firm explanations of what new and interesting stuff will be in the final product, and preferably excerpts from said final product, or I'm not backing. If you don't have the bulk of the work done already, and can pro...

Saturday, 14th October, 2017

  • 06:31 PM - quoted pickin_grinnin in post Frank Mentzer's Worlds of Empyrea Kickstarter to be Rebooted!
    I no longer back any rpg Kickstarters if the majority of the book hasn't already been written and if there's not a lot of specific information about the game setting on the Kickstarter page. I agree with this. A Kickstarter campaign should come after they're written the book. Even if it's just Frank's personal copy in need of a fine tuning, editing and cool pictures. That way we can get samples of the specific sort of material that's going to be included. A sample dungeon. A potential major NPC. An important kingdom. So we can get a feel for names, styles and overall theme.

Monday, 24th July, 2017

  • 07:42 PM - MNblockhead quoted pickin_grinnin in post Can Hobby Stores Make Their Saving Throw?
    Most gamers are not going to pay more for a "premium experience," unless we're talking about something really cool. That stuff costs money, and you have to charge more to make up the difference. It's not worth the cost of losing frugal (not "cheap") customers. Every store should focus on providing good customer service - that's not something that should be considered "premium." A retailer can go cheap and try to be profitable through volume or they can stop worrying about "most" customers and focus on on the portion who are willing to pay more. FLGS are not going to succeed by competing on price, convenience, or freebies. I just bought a "brick" of Wizkids Icons of the Realms pre-painted minis for less than any local game store that will be delivered to my doorstep, same-day, with no shipping costs. Yes, I "pay" shipping because I pay for Amazon Prime membership, but the cost of Prime has paid for itself many times over, esp. since I also cut cable for an Amazon Fire TV box. If I am pa...
  • 05:11 PM - LordEntrails quoted pickin_grinnin in post Can Hobby Stores Make Their Saving Throw?
    Every business should have good customer service, whether they are brick-and-mortar or online. In my opinion they should as well. Perhaps my comments should not have been directed in a reply to you, but rather to the community as a whole. (This thread, obviously, got me going and much of what I said was not directed at you.) Be aware, many business have made a specific choice NOT to provide customer service because of the costs involved in doing so. Specific examples are free online services where the only support is through user/volunteer communities. And many others that require you to pay extra for customer service. What I'm saying is that local game stores have the opportunity to provide a free service to their customers via Free RPG Day that helps them stand out from online sellers. It's something they can do that differentiates them. It's not free to the stores to provide this "free service" to their customers. Other threads several game store owners have commented that the cost to suppor...
  • 05:00 AM - LordEntrails quoted pickin_grinnin in post Can Hobby Stores Make Their Saving Throw?
    I would call it a lack of customer service because they failed to bring the products to their customer base. ... Most gamers are not going to pay more for a "premium experience," unless we're talking about something really cool. That stuff costs money, and you have to charge more to make up the difference. It's not worth the cost of losing frugal (not "cheap") customers. Every store should focus on providing good customer service - that's not something that should be considered "premium." Interesting, you start by saying you want customer service. Then you say you won't pay for customer service... For those of us who are old enough, we remember going to a store in the 80's and expecting good customer service. It was normal, it was expected, and it was important to a successful business. Then, economic downturn, emergence of discount stores and warehouses. Expand that with internet shopping, mega retailers willing to sell products at a loss or a 2% profit margin. Now we have a large group of cus...

Friday, 21st July, 2017

  • 09:03 AM - MNblockhead quoted pickin_grinnin in post Can Hobby Stores Make Their Saving Throw?
    No game, comic, or hobby store near me participated in Free RPG day. There are a lot of stores within a 30-minute highway drive from my house, and almost all of them have open game spaces and carry RPG books. That's the sort of short-sighted lack of customer service that I find in most (not all) game stores. That has nothing to do with customer service. It may show a lack of marketing savvy, but it isn't poor customer service. I don't know the economics of Free RPG day, but if you have a "lot" of game stores near you and NONE of them participated, methinks it isn't a good deal for game stores. Free comic day seems to be a great success, but there may just be better industry support. It is easier to give stacks of comics away than any RPG material that people would be interested in. I think most games stores should be going the other direction. Class up the joint and provide a premium experience. Stores with blue-light specials, and lots of sales, and give-away days, and other gimmicks that at...

Tuesday, 18th July, 2017

  • 01:42 AM - Elf_flambe quoted pickin_grinnin in post Can Hobby Stores Make Their Saving Throw?
    The other stores never have anything that interests me in stock. No matter how many times I visit them throughout the year, I almost always walk out empty-handed. MTG, board games, Pathfinder books, Games Workshop products, and D&D stuff make up 3/4 of their stock, at least, and I'm not interested in any of those things. Just out of curiosity, what gaming products are you interested in? You listed most of the major categories, and I'm not sure what's left that would have enough demand to help support a business. Wargaming? (But you listed GW, so that rules out Warhammer.) Non-MtG card games? Star Wars RPG or miniatures games? Small press games of various stripes can be interesting, but demand is usually limited, so is it realistic for a FLGS to carry a deep selection? You may just have eclectic-enough tastes that most stores just can't cater to you economically. They can't be all things to all people, unfortunately.

Tuesday, 13th June, 2017

  • 10:46 PM - GrahamWills quoted pickin_grinnin in post Is Tabletop Gaming D&D's "Sideshow"?
    >Why didn't the Lord of the Rings trilogy pay royalties to D&D? >It looks very much like a D&D game, has the same tropes -- >classes, Scottish dwarves, fragile elves -- all the trimmings. >But D&D got nothing from it because core D&D is too generic to use as a brand. There's also that pesky little problem of Lord of the Rings coming first, and D&D being largely based on it. The question was meant to stimulate thought -- yeah, I was actually aware of the order of publication. The point was that D&D has added NOTHING to Lord of the Rings; that was the major point of my argument -- D&D brings nothing to the table that will help sell a fantasy work. I've yet to hear in this thread a single concrete thing that is associated with D&D that would make people buy a fantasy work. Maybe I should have phrased the question this way: "Why didn't the makers of LOTR use more D&D tropes and license D&D to improve their film's appeal?", expecting the answer "because it wouldn't improve anything". I don't want ...

Monday, 12th June, 2017

  • 09:41 AM - aramis erak quoted pickin_grinnin in post Is Tabletop Gaming D&D's "Sideshow"?
    >Why didn't the Lord of the Rings trilogy pay royalties to D&D? >It looks very much like a D&D game, has the same tropes -- >classes, Scottish dwarves, fragile elves -- all the trimmings. >But D&D got nothing from it because core D&D is too generic to use as a brand. There's also that pesky little problem of Lord of the Rings coming first, and D&D being largely based on it. Not to mention that TSR settled Saul Zaentz DBA Middle Earth Enterprises v. Tactical Studies Rules, Inc. in 1976, wherein D&D's then owners admitted infringing Saul's purchased rights to LOTR & The Hobbit. Seriously, tho', the D&D brand is strong in videogames, and in novels. The lack of decent D&D branded movies isn't hurting the brand that much. And WotC's RPG division is barely a blip in the financials of HasBro. The novels and videogames are (fiscally) far more important to HasBro; WotC seems to justify TTRPG by, "it drives the creative processes that enable the novels & videogames to be good."

Sunday, 11th June, 2017

  • 09:37 PM - Morrus quoted pickin_grinnin in post Is Tabletop Gaming D&D's "Sideshow"?
    I suspect that the opportunity to successfully capitalize on D&D across media is long past. There was a time when it might have worked, but both TSR and (later) WotC let it pass. It's never too late for properties to gain a movie resurgence.

Friday, 9th June, 2017

  • 01:21 AM - Christopher Helton quoted pickin_grinnin in post What The World Needs Now Is More Gaming Conventions
    15,938 attendees would equate to a fairly large convention. The local-ish ones I attend are more in the hundreds or low single-digit thousands range. My local comic comic convention had an attendance of 64K the last couple of years, and I've been going to comic conventions for much longer than gaming ones. Fifteen thousand people is a pretty small number for a convention that is supposed to be one of the large conventions.

Saturday, 5th November, 2016

  • 12:36 AM - ddaley quoted pickin_grinnin in post Trapdoor Tech Closes Its Doors
    Well, I guess it does what I bought it for. I bought it intending to enter content. But, then FG began supporting 5e and releasing content. That kinda killed my motivation (for now). I didn't back the kickstarter. I probably would have, had I known about it. But, I bought it after the fact and knew what I was getting. I could see being upset if I had backed the kickstarter based on functionality that has yet to be delivered. When you look at what they promised (and continued to promise) versus what they delivered, it wasn't worth the money, at least for me. Being a programmer/developer myself, I don't have a lot of patience for businesses that under-deliver promised functionality to that degree and continue to make excuses for years. I would never do that to clients or customers.


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