View Profile: Bedrockgames - Morrus' Unofficial Tabletop RPG News
  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Wednesday, 10th July, 2019, 08:25 PM
    40 sounds like an ungodly number of dice. I wouldn't want to go past 12d10 max.
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Wednesday, 26th June, 2019, 04:06 PM
    I get that. But it is equally important here for me providing an explanation. A movie inspired period was more the 90s which is a whole other topic
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Wednesday, 26th June, 2019, 03:26 PM
    For me it boils down to a few things: I like to be surprised as the GM I don't like having the feeling that instead of running a session, I could just hand my players my notes and largely get the same result I was very, very unhappy running sessions in the 3E era under the predominant adventure structure (the style of adventure built around Encoutner Levels and planned out storylines,...
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Wednesday, 26th June, 2019, 03:17 PM
    Depending on how you define scene (which is very important here), I don't think this is true. It again brings us into 'everything is really X so you are always doing X no matter what'. If that is the case, then it doesn't really matter I suppose. But if we are drawing on Scenes here as an analogy it leads to problems, or at least problems for certain styles of play. Calling it a scene immediately...
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Wednesday, 26th June, 2019, 01:44 PM
    We are never going to agree on this Hussar. Yes you can call it a scene. But you can also call it an encounter, a situation, a challenge, etc. I find these much more neutral than scene (which brings to mind scene from a movie or play—-which I don’t want to emulate structurally). Same with narration. We are just at the “yes it is”, “no it isn’t” phase of the discussion.
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Wednesday, 26th June, 2019, 01:00 PM
    That table is a work in progress, so I don't know if Opera Troupe is going to stay as is, or if it is going to get more elaboration. It is a wuxia game, and assumes a certain level of familiarity with the genre (Chinese Opera Troupes are a pretty standard trope). But what I always tell people in the books is to think about why the person or group is there in the first place. There should be a...
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Wednesday, 26th June, 2019, 12:53 PM
    Don't know if you were meaning to suggest this or not, but to be clear: there aren't really any any creature entries on this table (at least in the supernatural sense of the word). Those are all different sects and organizations. So the 7 Demons entry refers to a group of bandits in the area who wear demon masks.
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Wednesday, 26th June, 2019, 12:45 PM
    My approach is different from yours. I don't think every encounter has to be meaningful. But there is always potential for them to be so depending on how they play out. When I do get an encounter result, I ask myself what the reasons are for the group or person being there and why they are interacting with the PCs. That question usually leads to interesting things more often than not. But again,...
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Wednesday, 26th June, 2019, 02:27 AM
    See Celebrim's post for the distinction. But I prefer location because it doesn't carry the double meaning. Yes a scene can mean a location (i.e. it was a beautiful scene, the bay down by Red Rock). But it can also mean a sequence of action in a movie or book....and that is where I think the term can become a problem if you are not as interested in emulating literature or film (or even if you but...
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Wednesday, 26th June, 2019, 02:02 AM
    That is an interesting observation Well, if they had been there before I would have dealt with it differently, but there are still things that can change on their way there. I am not going to go over every little detail, but I do like to give the players the chance to comment and take action as they are heading somewhere (even if I think the result is a foregone conclusion). If...
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 11:24 PM
    Their intentions could change or adjust adjust at any point. I don’t know how they will react as they see more details and observe things on their approach. i used that as an example because my players try stuff like that all the time. It isn’t a stretch to ask if there is a tailor in the marketplace. And yes they do routinely shift gears if someone suggests a better plan on the way...
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 10:29 PM
    Just one thought on this. One of the reasons I don't want to hand wave passed things like this, is you don't know if anything is going to happen until the players act. I might think entering the city is unimportant. But a player might surprise me and try to do something at that moment. I like giving players ample opportunity to interact with the setting how they like
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 10:24 PM
    This isn't how I do things. I mention the things I think they would see, with the understanding they might try to explore those things. For example, maybe they find a tailor in the stalls to make Lucky Mountain Gambling Hall Robes so they can pull some sort of scheme. The reason they are not hindered at the door, is because it is a gambling hall and wants customers. It is not a private club....
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 10:21 PM
    Keep in mind, plenty of stuff is assumed to happen in those earlier moments. If I started the example when the players approached the city (which would have occurred prior to this moment in play), they would have seen soldiers checking people as they come into the city (stopping roughly 1 in every 10 people randomly for searches). Prior to that, there would have been their journey to the city,...
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 10:05 PM
    Not at all. I am happy if people find use in thinking of play in terms of scenes. And I am also happy to play this way if that is what the GM wants to do. I am just reporting some of the difficulty I have with thinking of the game in those terms as a GM. When I have more time I will address some of your specific thoughts in the post (a lot there and not enough time at the moment to digest and...
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 09:49 PM
    I am not trying to convince you of that. Lots of people want everyone to imagine the same thing very clearly. That is fine. I see the function of it. I just am happy to allow for differences on this front. In fact I often like hearing about the different ways players imagined something
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 09:46 PM
    Admittedly we've gotten bogged down in semantics a bit and lost sight of the original meaning of the thread I think. For me the key distinction here is between a style that aims for a more prepackaged and planned sound (like boxed text) that emulates things like novel descriptions, versus a more casual, laid back approach that emphasizes the interaction between the players and the GM in order to...
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 09:41 PM
    Again, how we think of what we are doing at the table matters. Thinking that it is a scene carries all kinds of implications that I believe influences GM adjudication. I know this, because when I think of it as a scene, I run the game differently. Also, it is a confusing term because while you might mean scene to refer to 'stuff that happens' and you might mean 'narration' to refer to 'what the...
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 09:35 PM
    I posted links to recordings and a youtube video. I was reluctant to post an example by text because I think it ran the risk of being very artificial (and for what it is worth I agree with Celebrim that it is artificial). I don't think it is very useful for discussion for that reason. But I just wanted to put out SOMETHING so you might have an idea of where I am coming from.
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 09:33 PM
    Well if three whole people on the internet say something, I guess I have to re-evaluate my whole worldview and what words I use how. I don't think I am using an idiosyncratic definition at all. And I've explained part of why I am so particular is because of issues around equivocation. But more important. Thinking of games in the terms you are insisting on makes play less enjoyable for me....
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 07:05 PM
    This doesn't really bother me actually. Most of the time, I think one of the best things about RPGs is we are all picturing things a bit differently (like when you read a book). I think that is fine. It can become a problem when tactics depend on accuracy. But in those moments I just allow players to ask questions and give them what information I can. But I don't fret over it as I am describing...
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 05:13 PM
    Keep in mind this is an ongoing campaign so the players know the setting and cams to the city for a reason. I avoided giving a fight description because I didn’t want to cloud the example. But there are specific martial arts moves in the system players know if they want to fight
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 03:00 PM
    It might be but I wouldn’t describe that as narration or a scene
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 02:53 PM
    Here is Tung-On for reference
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 02:46 PM
    Like I said, I think you should listen to my session if you want to see how I do things. Me providing an artificial example is, like Aldarc points out, not likely to be a good reflection of real play. But let me give an example of how a session might play out a bit: ME: You get inside the city of Tung-On and the street you are on is filled with merchants and shop stalls PLAYER A: Can we see...
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 02:30 PM
    If that is what you want, I say go for it. Some of us are simply saying we don't want that. For me, I really don't care if I blurt out something important, or if I stumble in some other way. Hopefully it doesn't happen all the time. But this is a game. And I very much come into the session with that in the forefront of my mind. I think when you think in terms of scenes, when you think in terms of...
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 02:26 PM
    Narration, as we have been discussing in this and the other thread, isn't mere description. No one has made the claim that they don't describe things. If you want to understand where I am coming from, I am happy to tell you. But so many of your questions feel like rhetorical traps intended to prove I play the game a way and think of playing in a way, that I simply don't. Since when does boxed...
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 02:19 PM
    I did answer your question. I said I describe the NPC, and emphasized that your question is misleading because it equates description with narrating a scene. I don't know where you are getting this idea that I don't describe things. I've stated over and over that descriptions happen. I've linked to my own sessions as examples. The information is there if you want to know what one of my games...
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 01:31 PM
    A certain amount of meta gaming is inevitable but there is a big difference between that minimal level where people keep it in check and a game filled with meta gaming. Again this brings us back to the very bad argument of ‘X is inevitable/all encompassing/etc so you can’t escape my playstyle.’
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 12:53 PM
    First, Description does not Equal Narrating Scene. A scene is a specific concept from other types of media. I think in this instance it is best thought of as an analogy. If you want to analogize to scenes, go ahead. But I find it very much gets in the way of play at the table when I think of things in terms of scenes. Scenes have all kinds of implications, everything from this is something I...
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 10:34 AM
    Again these are different things. Narrating a scene and introducing a character, are not the same. Narrating a scene implies the players are passive listeners to an event. That isn't what I am doing. This is a case where how talk about what we are doing, and how we think of the game (in terms of analogies like 'scenes') really does matter.
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 12:22 AM
    Even if it is all me, which it usually isn't, there is a very big difference in my mind between a scene and a situation. A scene to me suggests I have something I want to present to the group, as well as a strong sense of where it should go. A situation is something where I the GM can be just as surprised as the players by where things go. Generally the starting point of the campaign, obviously I...
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Monday, 24th June, 2019, 07:28 PM
    It is about one style predominating. I am not anti-intellectual but I am anti-elitism, especially when gamers who don't talk like they came from the suburbs end up feeling out of place in the hobby (which I've seen many times firsthand). And while yes, you are right, we should all be entitled to our preferences, and there is nothing wrong with the GM narrating or talking more in a prose...
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Monday, 24th June, 2019, 06:06 PM
    I am reacting to a situation, not narrating a scene. There is a HUGE difference
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Monday, 24th June, 2019, 02:55 PM
    I don't think speaking in natural conversational style is deliberate in the way speaking in a narrator voice is deliberate. This just seems like we are blurring distinctions in order to make them ultimately the same (back to 'everything is literature').
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Monday, 24th June, 2019, 02:34 PM
    I have a video session too: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PLZnEbaKvNk
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Sunday, 23rd June, 2019, 02:39 AM
    I don't know. Lol. I have a couple of people who have blocked me as well (which is their right if they don't like my posts). But it creates some strange effects like the post counts being different (which led to some serious misunderstanding in a previous thread when one poster tried directing me to a particular number post---which was different for me than him).
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Sunday, 23rd June, 2019, 02:36 AM
    Pacing is something I don't even care about as a GM. I should say, dramatic pacing. I don't care for doing dramatic pacing. Obviously if everyone is twiddling their thumbs, I will try to keep the game moving. But I don't worry about pacing in terms of the flow of combat (i.e. getting the right level of rising action and a sense of things building). If the players shank the villain when he turns...
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Sunday, 23rd June, 2019, 02:33 AM
    yes, I would agree that is more narrative in style, and it is the thing I tend to avoid. My notes are never in boxed text form. I have notes on what is there, who is there, what people want, and I have connective tissue between those elements and other elements. But I never write out a description like that. I will occasionally be atmospheric, but not in a 'narrative way'. By which I mean, I...
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Saturday, 22nd June, 2019, 03:29 PM
    Yes, but we are all only responsible for our own posts, not how people choose to react to them
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Saturday, 22nd June, 2019, 12:49 PM
    Okay, so not going to type out an example. But here is a recording of a session. Listening to it, I think one of the key things is my reliance on the question and answer part of GM description. I try to keep the descriptions fairly accurate and straight forward. I use occasionally flashes of color. But I also lean on a fairly dry delivery: https://www.podbean.com/ew/pb-tty8j-8e1d83 EDIT: That...
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Saturday, 22nd June, 2019, 11:48 AM
    There are different GM styles and play styles. This is one I have encountered and plenty of people enjoy it. It isn't my style, but it is one that is entirely enjoyable if you aren't uptight and walking around with a checklist of 'what a GM must do to entertain me' list.
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Saturday, 22nd June, 2019, 11:43 AM
    Everyone is in control of their own posts. No one can make you post uncivilly. I see more than one poster being uncivil.
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Saturday, 22nd June, 2019, 11:41 AM
    You keep not accurately describing both my position and Aldarc's. By conversational I don't mean blue collar level speech. It can include the of course. To me part of conversational speaking is talking in your natural voice and without trying to put on airs or trying to emulate written text. But I keep telling you it isn't strictly about vocabulary as well. It is also about style, structure,...
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Saturday, 22nd June, 2019, 04:14 AM
    Man, for the topic, this getting way too heated
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Saturday, 22nd June, 2019, 02:09 AM
    This seems very inflexible to me. I am fine with concrete cases of 'your character doesn't really know X'. But vague meta gaming like leaning toward suspicion of one NPC because of how that NPC is described? That feels more like following an obvious hint by the GM than anything else. Now maybe you prefer not to give such obvious hints. And that is fine. But I can't fault a GM who does (or a...
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Saturday, 22nd June, 2019, 01:34 AM
    This seems pretty harsh to me. Policing meta gaming like that just feels extreme. And I don't think it is cheating. Different RPGs state different things about meta gaming. Some don't even mention meta gaming at all.
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Saturday, 22nd June, 2019, 01:20 AM
    I would say there is a huge difference, and the difference was quite clear on the previous thread and has been pretty stark here as well. I am not interested in debating the characteristics of boxed text, needless to say, I find boxed text, in my experience, to be more evocative than you do (though maybe that just reflects the types of models we both gravitate towards). What I will say is by...
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Saturday, 22nd June, 2019, 01:04 AM
    By prose, I simply meant speaking like a narrator of a novel
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Saturday, 22nd June, 2019, 12:49 AM
    That has been one of the difficulties of finding clarity in the conversation. It is basically shorthand for speaking in 'boxed text' or 'prose' style.
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Saturday, 22nd June, 2019, 12:46 AM
    Guys, two people asserting victory in another thread doesn't shed any light on who made their point better.
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Friday, 21st June, 2019, 11:57 PM
    Then I give them a little evocative narration because fun at the table is more important than ideas about what works at the table. But I won't go full pathfinder because of one player either. It is about the mix of the group. I view running a game like making food for everyone. You can't cleave to an ideologically pure playstyle if you have mixed groups, and most groups are mixed. At the same...
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Friday, 21st June, 2019, 11:54 PM
    No, I am spending enough time posting. I am not going to spend more writing examples out.
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Friday, 21st June, 2019, 11:51 PM
    My style isn't neutral. It just accepts peoples communication styles and keeps things conversational. I may have one player who really hams up the acting, another who is much more reserved and descriptive, another who talks much more casually and uses a lot of slang. But one feature of my style is I avoid artificial sounding descriptions. I try to stick to plain English, and I give my players...
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Friday, 21st June, 2019, 10:52 PM
    There is nothing wrong with Gygaxian. I just see it as one of many communication styles. When I meet people, I always make a point of accepting their way of talking. I've just seen a tendency among gamers to judge based on how they speak, even when the substance of what the person saying is very good.
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Friday, 21st June, 2019, 10:47 PM
    Sure it is. You don't think we can bridge communication divides by being more empathetic and making more of an effort to understand one another and accept different communication styles? I don't know, for this is basically how I always conduct myself. I don't fault a GM for speaking in a blue-collar Boston accent using blue collar Boston vernacular for example (or any other style of talking I...
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Friday, 21st June, 2019, 10:44 PM
    This. I would just add what I am trying to say in my previous posts is communication is a two-way street. The listener needs to try to understand the GM as well. Again, my point was about people coming in from different backgrounds for example, where the language use is totally understandable but not necessarily part of the accepted 'geek way' of communicating tone X. I just find that part of...
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Friday, 21st June, 2019, 10:24 PM
    I am not saying it doesn’t matter, I am saying it shouldn’t matter. And what references people get also shouldn’t matter. Most of the hobby is centered around suburban nerd culture and communication style. I think prioritizing/favoring that way if communicating limits the hobby.
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Friday, 21st June, 2019, 02:37 PM
    I guess my concern with this approach, at a fundamental level, is it leads to setting a bar where only people who talk like 'nerds' can sit in the GM chair, or even play. It is actually one of the big hurdles to getting people interested in the game that I encounter when talking to people outside of gaming. We tend to interpret intellect by how 'well spoken' a GM is and by their vocabulary. I...
    181 replies | 5827 view(s)
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Friday, 21st June, 2019, 10:57 AM
    I grew up in a very, very religious community. I think delusional is a strong word but I do think Celebrim is hitting on something that is real. There does seem to be a religious like impulse in the chasing of perfection here. And there is an ultimate evil that we are trying to purge (even when, as you yourself point out, it isn't fully evil itself, it is just imperfect---referring to your...
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  • Bedrockgames's Avatar
    Friday, 21st June, 2019, 10:49 AM
    People just genuinely disagree about this stuff. It doesn't mean they are evil. I find the colonialism in D&D argument fairly silly myself. I don't think the people advancing the argument are bad. I just think they are seeing something that isn't there and they have an elaborate argument defending it. Personally I find the logic a bit tortured. But I find the logic for lots of things tortured....
    350 replies | 13702 view(s)
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Tuesday, 25th June, 2019

  • 11:39 PM - Celebrim mentioned Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    Bedrockgames: I don't know how meaningful this is, but I think it's interesting that I have a tendency to write long posts whereas you have a tendency to respond with bursts of shorter posts, which would seem to mirror or preferences in seem framing. However in this example I would never have jumped right to the players on the steps of the balcony because I have no idea where they are going to go, what they are going to do, when they enter to city. The players in this example chose to go see Iron God Meng, but they just as easily could have asked to go see the magistrate to complain about Meng, or sought out a physician to help with some ailments, or checked out an inn, etc. Sure, but suppose the PC's have gotten into the city, and let's suppose after they get in the city, you are given the player proposition given by the players who are familiar with the setting and who have characters that are reasonably well informed (for example, they've been given some directions to the Lucky Mountain G...
  • 09:28 PM - Hussar mentioned Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    ...ldn’t describe that as narration or a scene 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, fair enough, call it a throat warbler mangrove if that floats your boat. For everyone else, this is just a scene (gambling den in a city) with (very sparse) narration. It requires that the players know the setting very, very well and that the majority of the details have already been established. This generally isn't true for my groups because we tend to change settings very often and rarely spend enough time in any one setting to have that level of familiarity that we can forego more details - as Celebrim has very nicely illustrated. So, no, Bedrockgames, it's not about any sort of semantic trap to show that you aren't playing the way you are. It's that you are playing more or less the same as everyone else, but, you want to call it something different and that's what's confusing the issue.
  • 02:15 PM - Hussar mentioned Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    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 you think narration is? That's all it is. Since when does boxed text have anything to do with event resolution? Every single example that's been put forward is about setting up the event, but, nothing about what happens next. I presume that your players don't talk over you while you describe the NPC? Would you not also describe the surroundings? Where are the doors, what's the furniture, that sort of thing? Again, that's all narration is. Heck, in the Ghosts of Saltmarsh example I posted above, it had ZERO to do with resolving anything. It was just setting the stage. That's all narration e...
  • 12:21 PM - Aldarc mentioned Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    Just realize that the definition of narrating a scene in no way actually implies or explicitly says that there is any passive listening going on at all. That probably the reason that so many people are pushing back against you is that you are working from a definition that no one else is.I don't think Bedrockgames is mistaken here. This sense of literary prose narration happening at you, with the players in more passive roles as an audience to GM performance, was present as far back as the OP of pemerton's thread that spawned this one. He is working from a definition or understanding that others had been using.

Monday, 24th June, 2019

  • 02:52 PM - Michael Silverbane mentioned Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    So... To me, when the DM is describing things, setting the scene, relaying the results of actions, he is doing narration. Doing it in a conversational style doesn't make it not narration. In addition, the choice of using a conversational style still seems pretty deliberate. So, like in Bedrockgames 's case, he uses this style for a more authentic, easily accessible feel, and because he and his players prefer it. Similarly Saelorn uses a neutral, "just the facts" style of narration in an effort not to unduly influence his players. So... Word choice and phrasing are important, even if they are sometimes important for different things. Personally, I tend to move back and forth pretty fluidly between more fancy-pants talk and colloquialism depending on a number of factors, including things like, 'I thought of a cool thing ans want to try to express that to my players.' or, 'Steve is looking hangry, perhaps I can annoy him by using a lot of food words.' or, 'this combat is getting pretty intense, I'd better keep my descriptions punchy and on point.'
  • 02:29 PM - Aldarc mentioned Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    ... is vocabulary choice? After all, you didn't change any word order. So, is it down to vocabulary, yes or no?He's using simpler language, but I don't think he is necessarily using simpler vocabulary. There is not much difference of vocabulary between "rubbish is scattered around what was once a fine guest bedroom" and "it's a run-down bedroom with rubbish scattered about." And we could hardly say that those differences amount to any notions of higher vocabulary: e.g., fine, guest, once, what, was. Stylistically, however, the former does appear more elevated than the latter. The analysis I've just offered might also be relevant to the ongoing exchange between Imaro and Aldarc (? I think, haven't gone back to check) about what a conversational style might actually look like.I'll freely admit that Imaro's task if a bit of a tall order for me. It's essentially asking for pre-scripting out an imaginary conversation, which is an artificial scenario devoid of context. That's what makes Bedrockgames's contribution so valuable, because he was able to link to the audio from one or more actual play sessions.

Sunday, 23rd June, 2019

  • 02:09 AM - Hussar mentioned Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    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, rather than the content of that information itself. Now, at that point, sure, I can see a more conversational style being one way of doing it. Less formal, less formulaic. And, again, it's going to really, really depend on the game you are playing. Some games will necessitate a more "narrative" style just to evoke particular moods and tones. I just find that when I do that, and don't work from well structured notes (or boxed text) I forget stuff. I miss details. The other issue I have is pacing. Which, honestly, is my own bugaboo. As someone running the game, I want to get as much information into the player's hands as quickly and efficiently as possible. W...

Saturday, 22nd June, 2019

  • 05:52 AM - Hussar mentioned Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    ...ell, again, I might argue vocabulary is an issue in there. After all, it's not an every day conversation that will include words like "caprice" "three and twenty years", "mean understanding" and "solace". After all, those are most certainly not going to appear in most people's conversations. And, with the Harry Potter example, it's interesting that you choose that since around 98% of the words in the first Harry Potter book appear in the first 2000 most common English words. That's about as close to conversation level vocabulary as you can possibly get. :D But, I agree that this is obviously prose. It's prose, because, as you say, the "organized structure, style, and tone." Which, if you go back into the other thread, I was told absolutely DOESN'T define the difference between conversation and narrative. Which is why we've been chasing our tails so much because every time I try to say, "Well, is this what you're talking about?" I get told, nope, that's not it. I mean, Bedrockgames isn't agreeing with you here. For him, conversational means using a "blue collar" level of speech mixed with modern vernacular. It's very much focused on the vocabulary and not the style. I tend to agree with you that it is usually the style, but, again, that's not quite as simple as it seems. After all, you say that the descriptions of the Dursely's from Harry Potter is obviously prose and not a transcription of someone describing them. However, the only real difference would be things like pauses, digressions and false starts. Nothing in that description is particularly un-conversational. It's rehearsed, sure and obviously more polished than what you'd get in a conversation. But, it's not particularly something you'd never hear someone say.
  • 03:37 AM - Aldarc mentioned Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    ... as vocabulary. It's about how complexly or formally we construct and arrange our uttered thoughts, but this is not the same thing as vocabulary. For example, if we were to look at this sample description about a husband and wife, we could probably recognize that this is literary prose as opposed to a conversational description. Mr. [CHARACTER] was so odd a mixture of quick parts, sarcastic humour, reserve, and caprice, that the experience of three and twenty years had been insufficient to make his wife understand his character. Her mind was less difficult to develop. She was a woman of mean understanding, little information, and uncertain temper. When she was discontented, she fancied herself nervous. The business of her life was to get her daughters married; its solace was visiting and news.How might you recognize that? It's not necessarily "how big the words are" that tips us off, but, rather, the style and manner by which these ideas are communicated. Sure, you or possibly Bedrockgames would point to the "big adjectives," but I would say it's how these words are constructed together that makes the difference. We could even go back through this piece and replace the "big adjectives" with simpler synonyms, and we could still probably recognize this as literary prose due to how the ideas are communicated through organized structure, style, and tone. Though maybe this is not modern enough of a text? Mr. and Mrs. Dursley, of number four, Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were perfectly normal, thank you very much. They were the last people you'd expect to be involved in anything strange or mysterious, because they just didn't hold with such nonsense. Mr. Dursley was the director of a firm called Grunnings, which made drills. He was a big, beefy man with hardly any neck, although he did have a very large mustache. Mrs. Dursley was thin and blonde and had nearly twice the usual amount of neck, which came in very useful as she spent so much of her time crani...
  • 01:54 AM - Aldarc mentioned Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    See, ok, Bedrockgames, but, what you're talking about is vocabulary choice. Fair enough. But, Aldarc has insisted, pretty vehemently, all the way along that vocabulary choice doesn't matter. And, you have never contradicted him. So, are you disagreeing with Aldarc? It appears that you are, but, I want to be very sure. It's not about "blurring dualities". It's that your side of the argument isn't quite as clear as you might think. It's confusing. You're saying that vocabulary matters. Aldarc is very strongly saying that vocabulary doesn't. So, which is it? Now, me, I think I agree with you - vocabulary matters. Now, you don't think there's much value in using an extended vocabulary - that you "don't use big adjectives". Fair enough. That's where you and I disagree. I think that most DM's actually do slip into "big adjectives", mostly subconsciously, depending on what game you happen to be playing. But, Aldarc would say that we're both wrong and that "big adjectives" ISN'T what delineates...
  • 01:38 AM - Hussar mentioned Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    See, ok, Bedrockgames, but, what you're talking about is vocabulary choice. Fair enough. But, Aldarc has insisted, pretty vehemently, all the way along that vocabulary choice doesn't matter. And, you have never contradicted him. So, are you disagreeing with Aldarc? It appears that you are, but, I want to be very sure. It's not about "blurring dualities". It's that your side of the argument isn't quite as clear as you might think. It's confusing. You're saying that vocabulary matters. Aldarc is very strongly saying that vocabulary doesn't. So, which is it? Now, me, I think I agree with you - vocabulary matters. Now, you don't think there's much value in using an extended vocabulary - that you "don't use big adjectives". Fair enough. That's where you and I disagree. I think that most DM's actually do slip into "big adjectives", mostly subconsciously, depending on what game you happen to be playing. But, Aldarc would say that we're both wrong and that "big adjectives" ISN'T what delineates...
  • 12:55 AM - Hussar mentioned Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    But, that's the problem Bedrockgames. What constitutes "boxed text style" prose and what is just "conversational"? Most of the time, there isn't a hugely detectable difference. Most boxed text is pretty straight forward description - "the room is such and such big, there are so and so doors, the furnishings are this and that and there's a such and such inhabitant in the room that wants to eat you" is pretty par for the course description. So, what differentiates that from "normal conversation"? To me, I chose the difference as being vocabulary. Word choice, outside of game terms, is what separates "narrative" from "conversation". I'm not sure how else you can differentiate. I guess, that's my question to you then, as the OP, what differentiates "evocative prose" from "conversation"?

Friday, 21st June, 2019

  • 11:43 AM - Hussar mentioned Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    Heh. When the premise of the thread is clearly stated, we actually get to discuss the issue rather than spend 15 pages debating what the conversation is actually about. So, for that, thank you Bedrockgames. :D I'm pretty much in the "it depends on the game" camp. I generally find that word choice is going to be necessary as a DM/GM simply because it's virtually impossible to separate running a game from any level of performance. We always choose specific language to fit the game, genre, mood and whatnot, which is, IMO, going to nudge things away from the conversational and towards the prose. This came up in the other thread where words like "wield" were used. That's a deliberate word choice for a fantasy RPG. You'd never use it in an SF RPG, for example. Han Solo wields his blaster? I don't think so. If we're playing a fantasy RPG, we're going to draw on fantasy language, probably subconsciously. If we play a modern RPG, our language is going to change. Note, I'm not referring to game dependent language. That's obviously something else entirely. But, the language we use during the game, that isn't "game language" is going to shift depending on the game we're playing. F...

Wednesday, 12th June, 2019


Tuesday, 11th June, 2019

  • 11:08 PM - Hussar mentioned Bedrockgames in post Players 'distressed' by gang-rape role-playing game
    The truly frustrating thing about these conversations is we have to spend so much time on hypothetical situations that the actual issue never gets dealt with. I mean when some guy can get staggeringly drunk, stalk a woman, assault security staff and we STILL have to debate whether it’s okay to socially sanction him, it just staggers belief. Tell you what. Go into your workplace and begin loudly telling rape jokes to a group of colleagues. See what happens. Why should this be any different? The hyperbole here is baffling. Comparing being imprisoned for years with not being able to run games at cons? Seriously? That’s the point of equivalency? Bedrockgames, instead of making allusions, why not actually quote the things that trouble you? Because right now all it looks like you’re doing is victim blaming. Even if that’s not your intention, that is what it looks like.
  • 01:41 PM - Hussar mentioned Bedrockgames in post Players 'distressed' by gang-rape role-playing game
    Heh, irony is a wonderful thing. Bedrockgames is complaining that folks are rushing to judgement and we're negatively impacting this guy's life without learning the facts all the while not bothering to actually spend any time learning the facts that are IN THIS THREAD. That's a whole lot of irony right there. So, folks, the moral of the story is, actually do a bit of due diligence before cramming your foot in your mouth and looking like a ninny.
  • 12:22 PM - Hussar mentioned Bedrockgames in post Players 'distressed' by gang-rape role-playing game
    Bedrockgames - did you read the blog posting that was linked? Or did you skip a bunch of pages. Because, I think that you might be missing a LOT of information here.

Monday, 10th June, 2019

  • 04:03 PM - lowkey13 mentioned Bedrockgames in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    I don’t think anyone’s advocating for no description. So, let's see if we can understand the fundamental disconnect between the people on this thread again, using this post and the prior one by @Bedrockgames as the illustrative examples. Using this post, and the following quote from the prior post- "It is just I don't approach my descriptions like I am author writing a book or a dramatic narrator. I approach them like I would how I'd describe things if I was telling you about something that happened to me that day. I use a lot of colloquial language in my descriptions for example." This really gets to the fundamental issue of why, to quote Cool Hand Luke, there is a failure to communicate. It all starts with the OP. So let's look at the OP again; I will quote it in full, with emphasis added BY ME as I think appropriate- Some recent threads have discussed aspects of GM and player narration in RPGing. Which hase prompted me to start this thread. My answer to the question in the thread title is a firm No. RPGing requires narration: GMs describe situations, and players declare actions for their PCs that respond to those situations. But I don't think the literary quality of that narrat...

Sunday, 9th June, 2019

  • 07:33 PM - Imaro mentioned Bedrockgames in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    Let me ask a question to pemerton, Hawkeye, Bedrockgames and Aldarc. Would you use the same words/language/etc. to describe a remote village in the mountains for say a Ravenloft campaign vs a Four color superhero game like Icons? let's assume good faith in that the Icons village isn't supposed to be haunted or anything tht would make it more Ravenloft-esque.... EDIT: Meant hawkeyefan ...
  • 03:26 PM - Maxperson mentioned Bedrockgames in post Is RPGing a *literary* endeavour?
    An automechanic will have a range of vocabulary that "falls outside of normal, everyday conversation," but I don't think that we would credibly accuse them for using the technical jargon of their field as part of their conversation as speaking with "literary language." That would be ridiculous. This is because we can recognize that they are not speaking with any sense of sculpted prose or word play, but with prevalent words of their field. But neither are those mechanics speaking conversational English, which is what Bedrockgames says he wants.


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Tuesday, 16th July, 2019

  • 07:52 PM - Blue quoted Bedrockgames in post Help Reading Dice Pools
    40 sounds like an ungodly number of dice. I wouldn't want to go past 12d10 max. You definitely wouldn't want to go up to 12d12 - if you rolled max it would be gross... ...(waiting to see if anyone gets it)...

Wednesday, 26th June, 2019

  • 04:01 PM - Celebrim quoted Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    I was very, very unhappy running sessions in the 3E era under the predominant adventure structure (the style of adventure built around Encoutner Levels and planned out storylines, and the stuff you found in Dungeon at the time). OK, that's fine, but that structure sure as heck wasn't heavily inspired by movie making or story telling. We could talk about when module writing for D&D went wrong in that direction because writers assumed that the goal was to exactly emulate movies or novels, but then we wouldn't be talking about 3e which was a reaction to all of that.
  • 03:58 PM - Celebrim quoted Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    For example, when I am running a situation, I don't care if it is a 'good scene' in the sense that you have in a film. I object that you do. All I care about is if the game is fun. Is that what the movie maker ultimately cares about as well? I mean, even a horror movie maker that wants to inflict scares, or a dramatists that wants to provoke tears in a scene, ultimately wants to do that because at some level the audience enjoys that experience and came to the movie to experience it. I don't see this distinction as a distinction at all. If all you care is that the game is fun, then you do care about having good scenes. What makes the scene good is that it is fun. And part of the game being fun, at least for many of my groups, is making sure the players have a sense that they are interacting with a breathing setting that isn't always oriented around their personal drama or character arc (like you have in a movie). You have an excessively narrow view of movies, personal drama,...
  • 02:21 PM - Aldarc quoted Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    We are just at the “yes it is”, “no it isn’t” phase of the discussion.No we're not. :p
  • 04:18 AM - Celebrim quoted Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    Just to give an example, here is the Tung-On encounter table I am working on for an upcoming book... I do love me some random encounter tables. The important thing to remember about a random encounter table it is supposed to be a scene generating device. So don't put anything on the table that you don't think you can improvise a meaningful scene out of. For a random encounter table in the jungle, that's generally pretty easy - everything on the table wants to eat the PCs. Bang. For a random encounter table in the city, the sort of interaction that the named thing is going to have with the PCs is much less obvious and so often needs to be specified. If you can't see what that interaction is going to be immediately, then it's probably not that great of an entry for the table, and it's going to be even less obvious if you are preparing this for someone else not steeped in the intricacies of your campaign world. So for example, what meaningful interaction is going to happen with th...
  • 03:59 AM - Celebrim quoted Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    So I prefer location, because it means a place, but can't be equivocated on to bring oughts into the discussion as easily. For me, the thing is descriptive whether or not it is prescriptive. Whether you think of them as scenes or not, they are scenes. Thinking of them as locations is true, in the sense that any good sandbox will have locations where no scenes take place, and scenes that take place in locations where no participant knew before hand that there was going to be a scene there. But the scene happens whether you think about it as a scene or not. I don't think there is a formula for making a good movie. I do think you can tell when a movie is made well versus one that is made badly. For example, one thing that seriously hurt the Star Wars prequel trilogy is poor scene framing. Deprived of physical locations, Lucas was left to design how each shot should be seen. And forced to imagine each shot rather than improvise to the constraints of a set, he had a tendency to request the ...

Tuesday, 25th June, 2019

  • 10:02 PM - Celebrim quoted Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    Again, how we think of what we are doing at the table matters. Thinking that it is a scene carries all kinds of implications that I believe influences GM adjudication. I know this, because when I think of it as a scene, I run the game differently. Ooh! Ooh! Ooh! Goody. We are going to get into a discussion of what a "scene" is and how thinking about how you play a game is as important to how you play a game as the rules of the game. These are like two of my favorite topics. When I use the word "scene" with respect to a table top game, I mean "everything that happens between handwaves" (granted, that's a bit of a tongue and cheek definition). That is to say, you know a scene is starting because you beginning to keep track of what is going on, and you are no longer hand waving player motion through time and place. The end of the prior handwave is marked by the "Bang", the important thing that establishes a scene is beginning, and the end of a scene is marked by a handwave called a "Cut". ...
  • 09:43 PM - Celebrim quoted Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    I posted links to recordings and a youtube video. I was reluctant to post an example by text because I think it ran the risk of being very artificial (and for what it is worth I agree with Celebrim that it is artificial). I don't think it is very useful for discussion for that reason. But I just wanted to put out SOMETHING so you might have an idea of where I am coming from. I think I do get where you are coming from, as I'm somewhat on the opposite end of the spectrum and prone to verbosity. So I'm keen to learn something from your take, if only to mitigate my flaws. However, I don't think I'm going to be convinced that "cinematic" (using the word as a term of art to mean "tending to cause everyone to imagine the same evocative scene") is unimportant to play, and if that ultimately is your position, I think our aesthetics of play are too far apart to really help each other much.
  • 09:28 PM - Hussar quoted Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    ...ldn’t describe that as narration or a scene 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, fair enough, call it a throat warbler mangrove if that floats your boat. For everyone else, this is just a scene (gambling den in a city) with (very sparse) narration. It requires that the players know the setting very, very well and that the majority of the details have already been established. This generally isn't true for my groups because we tend to change settings very often and rarely spend enough time in any one setting to have that level of familiarity that we can forego more details - as Celebrim has very nicely illustrated. So, no, Bedrockgames, it's not about any sort of semantic trap to show that you aren't playing the way you are. It's that you are playing more or less the same as everyone else, but, you want to call it something different and that's what's confusing the issue.
  • 05:08 PM - Celebrim quoted Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    It might be but I wouldn’t describe that as narration or a scene Well, it is but I do understand where you are coming from. Compared to my typical example of play, your scene setting or frame setting is very sparse. You are expecting that the player will fill in any necessary details that he doesn't have with questions, and thus you are speeding play because you aren't giving the players details they don't want. In practice though, your artificial example feels really artificial. It works only presumably because the PC's already know quite a bit about the setting and there is almost nothing about the setting that they need to know. I suspect something like the following would happen in my game: ME: You get inside the city of Tung-On and the street you are on is filled with merchants and shop stalls PLAYER A: Can we see the Lucky Mountain Gambling Hall nearby? ME: Yes, it is just down the street, across from a bunch of inns. PLAYER B: I lead the way to the gambling hall ME: You...
  • 04:27 PM - Michael Silverbane quoted Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    Yes, with the GM as narrator. There is also some player narration in there... ME: Yes, it is just down the street, across from a bunch of inns PLAYER B: I lead the way to the gambling hall ME: When you get to the door there are men in blue robes at the entrance. PLAYER B: I step inside and look around for this Iron God Meng guy. Player B's statements there are classic first person narration. Since there is no conflict or uncertainty to resolve in them, they require no further input from the DM, who simply continues narration descriptive dialogue assuming the new state of the fiction narrated by Player B.
  • 03:20 PM - Michael Silverbane quoted Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    It might be but I wouldn’t describe that as narration or a scene I would (if pressed to call it something other than 'narration') call it a descriptive dialogue (or maybe a narrative dialogue, depending on how cheeky I was feeling). Edit: dropped a ).
  • 02:58 PM - Michael Silverbane quoted Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    Like I said, I think you should listen to my session if you want to see how I do things. Me providing an artificial example is, like Aldarc points out, not likely to be a good reflection of real play. But let me give an example of how a session might play out a bit: ME: You get inside the city of Tung-On and the street you are on is filled with merchants and shop stalls PLAYER A: Can we see the Lucky Mountain Gambling Hall nearby? ME: Yes, it is just down the street, across from a bunch of inns PLAYER B: I lead the way to the gambling hall ME: When you get to the door there are men in blue robes at the entrance. PLAYER B: I step inside and look around for this Iron God Meng guy. ME: You see the hall has three tiers and people are playing all sorts of games. You don't see anyone who fits his description. PLAYER: Do I see any areas that look guarded or like they have large retinues serving an important person? ME: Yes on the stairs leading up to a section on the third level bal...
  • 11:08 AM - Hussar quoted Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    Again these are different things. Narrating a scene and introducing a character, are not the same. Narrating a scene implies the players are passive listeners to an event. That isn't what I am doing. This is a case where how talk about what we are doing, and how we think of the game (in terms of analogies like 'scenes') really does matter. 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 an event - then, sure, fair enough, I don't do that either. Just realize that the definition of narrating a scene in no way actually implies or explicitly says that there is any passive listening going on at all. That probably the reason that so many people are pu...

Monday, 24th June, 2019

  • 11:48 PM - Hussar quoted Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    I am reacting to a situation, not narrating a scene. There is a HUGE difference 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 in the room. And, at that point, what are you reacting to? The opening of a door? That's a pretty fine line distinction. PC's are camping for the night in a D&D game. You roll a random encounter. At that point, you have to narrate the set up, it's unavoidable. Like billd91 said, the distinction is formal vs informal style. But, you're still narrating no matter what you do.
  • 07:59 PM - lowkey13 quoted Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    It is about one style predominating. I am not anti-intellectual but I am anti-elitism, especially when gamers who don't talk like they came from the suburbs end up feeling out of place in the hobby (which I've seen many times firsthand). And while yes, you are right, we should all be entitled to our preferences, and there is nothing wrong with the GM narrating or talking more in a prose style....everything has downsides and excesses worth bringing up. Intellectual snobbery is a thing. And it does creep into the hobby a lot. I hear what you're saying, and I understand your point; that said, you should consider the following two issues in tandem: 1. When you say you are "anti-elitism" (as opposed to anti-intellectual?), this is similar to a battle that many of us fought when we were young. Quite frankly, I am perfectly happy to have read my books and been all nerdy; there is something distinctly disturbing, to me, to see that the very thing that attracted me to the hobby to begin with (a haven for ...
  • 06:04 PM - lowkey13 quoted Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    I don't think speaking in natural conversational style is deliberate in the way speaking in a narrator voice is deliberate. This just seems like we are blurring distinctions in order to make them ultimately the same (back to 'everything is literature'). Well, maybe. But notice how you and others describe the "not your style." Previously, it was described as funny voices. Now, it's- I guess my concern with this approach, at a fundamental level, is it leads to setting a bar where only people who talk like 'nerds' can sit in the GM chair, or even play. It is actually one of the big hurdles to getting people interested in the game that I encounter when talking to people outside of gaming. We tend to interpret intellect by how 'well spoken' a GM is and by their vocabulary. By conversational I don't mean blue collar level speech. It can include the of course. To me part of conversational speaking is talking in your natural voice and without trying to put on airs or trying to emulate written text...
  • 03:14 PM - Hussar quoted Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    I don't think speaking in natural conversational style is deliberate in the way speaking in a narrator voice is deliberate. This just seems like we are blurring distinctions in order to make them ultimately the same (back to 'everything is literature'). 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. There's no way to play an RPG without someone narrating the scene. Whether it's "rubbish is scattered around what was once a fine guest bedroom" or "it's a run-down bedroom with rubbish scattered about.", those are deliberate choices and both of those choices are setting the scene for the players. The range isn't narrative vs conversational, it's prose v...

Sunday, 23rd June, 2019

  • 03:48 AM - Hussar quoted Bedrockgames in post GM DESCRIPTION: NARRATION OR CONVERSATION?
    Pacing is something I don't even care about as a GM. I should say, dramatic pacing. I don't care for doing dramatic pacing. Obviously if everyone is twiddling their thumbs, I will try to keep the game moving. But I don't worry about pacing in terms of the flow of combat (i.e. getting the right level of rising action and a sense of things building). If the players shank the villain when he turns to open a desk drawer, and that legitimately gives them the win, then I go with it, even if it is the first five minutes of the adventure. This is something I've had players thank me for and comment on. Not all players like it. But there is something refreshing about adjudicating in a way that lets the dice fall where they may and doesn't account for concerns like 'is it too early for this boss to be defeated or this battle to be won'. 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 gam...

Saturday, 22nd June, 2019



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