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  1. Mercule

    5E Rejecting the Premise in a Module

    I have no problem with either home brew or modules, but I run them differently. My brain simply has to process them in different ways, even if I customize the module. When I'm running home brew, I tend to be a lot more focused on character depth and expect the players to provide story hooks for...
  2. Mercule

    5E Exploring Eberron: Now Available!

    I rather like it, so long as there aren't vast swaths of lore that invalidate others. One of the things that attracts me to Eberron is the idea of "in my Eberron" versus the mountain of canon that is the Forgotten Realms.
  3. Mercule

    General Two underlying truths: D&D heritage and inclusivity

    Your point just got me thinking, "Hmm... what would raising offspring look like if the race was inherently evil. What would removing parental love from the equation look like?" Eating their young was one thing that comes from that. I didn't dismiss it so much as show how it'd look. Why do you...
  4. Mercule

    General Two underlying truths: D&D heritage and inclusivity

    I still don't have an issue with saying, "the entire race of orcs was formed from the bile of Gruumsh and filled with hate." And, by "don't have a problem" I mean that I would not find it unacceptable if a GM did that in their game. That is, more or less, the original lore. Orcs are bad because...
  5. Mercule

    General Two underlying truths: D&D heritage and inclusivity

    I would say that it's more a matter of people having a Platonic ideal of what behaviors humans can have that makes them fall short of what humans should be. Racists erroneously applied them to other humans in order to dehumanize them. Orcs are a storytelling device that actually possess those...
  6. Mercule

    General Fantasy Racism in D&D

    Fair. I reread the topic, rather than the specific post. You're correct that I wandered off-topic. It's a mighty-fine line to toe. I'll go back and remove that paragraph. Remove or leave your quote of me, as you see fit. I'm not backing away from the statements, just agreeing that they don't...
  7. Mercule

    General Two underlying truths: D&D heritage and inclusivity

    And, I said you're overthinking it. I seriously have no problem with orcs being free agents that are evil only because of upbringing, curse, or just overactive adrenaline. There's also nothing wrong with saying "orcs are evil because they are". They're a made up race and, if that's one of the...
  8. Mercule

    General Fantasy Racism in D&D

    I think your example actually is strongly in line with my point. I never said that color was inherent to the us/them dichotomy. It happens to be the axis around which it's spun for the last few centuries, but that's beside the point. Humans tend to view this tribally, even if that tribe is large...
  9. Mercule

    General Fantasy Racism in D&D

    For the most part, it is. Humans are hardwired to protect "us" from "them". It's not going away any time in the near (or far) future. That's why anything that focuses on how different groups of people are, no matter how well intentioned, generally tends to inflame racism and other schism. The...
  10. Mercule

    General Two underlying truths: D&D heritage and inclusivity

    You are aware that every single orc is a figment of somebody's imagination, right? There are no orcs. There have never been orcs. There never will be orcs. They're made up for the specific purpose of giving made up people someone to kill without feeling bad about it.
  11. Mercule

    General Two underlying truths: D&D heritage and inclusivity

    I snipped a lot, but I left what I think are the major turning points. What does it get us? Moral plot immunity. Orcs (or whatever) are bad because they are. We don't have to wring hands about whether we should parley or just kill them. Orcs are bad because those are the metaphysical laws of...
  12. Mercule

    General Do Your Human Characters Match Your Ethnicity (etc)?

    All of the above. I'm a white guy. I've played white, black, Asian, "Middle Eastern" (Greyhawk Baklunish, for example). There were several that were of unspecified ethnicity, as well, and I wouldn't have objected to them being drawn as whatever. I've also played a couple of female characters...
  13. Mercule

    TSR Jim Ward: Demons & Devils, NOT!

    I don't necessarily object to those terms, but I can't use at least the demon side because I've been playing D&D since well before 2E and my home brew setting had a sect of elven knights who use a specially designed sabre/scimitar called a tanea, from which they derive their name -- tanari. I...
  14. Mercule

    5E The case for (and against) a new Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting book

    In game. It was planned from the beginning of that particular campaign run. I had a couple players who'd been playing in the setting for almost 15 years, so knew the lore well enough for it to matter. The important parts are that there was an evil empire (yeah, it's cliche) that had been around...
  15. Mercule

    5E The case for (and against) a new Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting book

    I really wish I'd liked 4E rules more. The Nentir Vale seemed pretty cool. It would have been good timing, too, as I killed off my 25 year home brew during 3e. Interesting enough, for this conversation, I found that even the material I'd created from whole cloth had become too limiting and it...
  16. Mercule

    3E/3.5 Comparison to 3.5e

    For perspective, you're naming the things I love about 5E, especially compared to 3e. I think the 5E skill system is the best, yet. It's not perfect, but it allows a certain level of skills while keeping it simple enough to be in the background. The feat system is one of the main reasons I'll...
  17. Mercule

    3E/3.5 Comparison to 3.5e

    Early in playing 5E, I made this observation: 3.x, 4e, and 5e are almost more of alternate offshoots of AD&D (2E). 5e borrows most strongly from the "good stuff" in 3e, but it also pulls a few things from 4e. In other places, it feels like they went all the way back to 2e and fixed something...
  18. Mercule

    5E The case for (and against) a new Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting book

    Eh, I think the difference is more along the lines of "how do you define 'need'?" I, personally, don't really care about the greater canon of the Realms (or most other settings). Yes, if it's presented, I'll use it. But, I really prefer to have things that are more seeds than fully bloomed...
  19. Mercule

    5E The case for (and against) a new Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting book

    Not sure I agree with that, but it's probably past the point where it matters.
  20. Mercule

    5E The case for (and against) a new Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting book

    Agreed. Despite my initial resistance, I'm very happy with the idea of "let's get just enough shelf space to introduce this setting". I'm still not thrilled that the Realms are what are used for all the adventures and think it'd be better if they spread out the love a bit. But... It's better...
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