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D&D 5E 5e and the Cheesecake Factory: Explaining Good Enough


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Ovinomancer

No flips for you!
Well as long as you violently disagree I guess that makes you right. :p
Of course it doesn't, which is why I continued with my reasoning. Pretending that's all I said for points, though... gkad that was enoufh to immediately pull you out of your third stated disengagement.
I've explained multiple times that I agree there are some objective measures of a TTRPG that I list as coherence, consistency and conciseness. That's the baseline. Everything beyond that is preference and opinion.
And your baseline is such that I can't think of a single RPG that fails to cross that threshold, which means it's pretty useless.
But as long as you violently disagree I guess it's fine that you ignore that and keep insisting that the grade of beef is an inherent measurement of quality that has anything to do with TTRPGs.
Ah, the same strawman from the start, nice to see it again, this time paired with a new one! Quote where I say the grade of beef has anything to do with TTRPGs. You can't. You can find it in response to a direct question to me about quality of steak, though.

Can we stop with the strawmen? That'd be swell.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Of course there is, they are different things. But, the argument was that quality is only a matter of preference.

List elements that you think indicate quality.

Dollars to donuts, for each item on the list, you'll find someone around here who disagrees with you that it is a measure of the quality of a game.

How, then, is it not a matter of preference?

For something like a car, we define goals - we have a goal that people not die in car crashes, for example. Or a goal that the car not require expensive repairs often. If people don't get hurt, and the car needs little maintenance, we say it is a quality automobile. Most of us agree on these measures of quality, and agree what a quality car is.

But then along comes the joker who wants his car fast and fancy, and does not give a crumb about costs or personal risk, and he buys a Jaguar (in the US, they have a reputation for needing to go into the shop) or a Porche, which will not protect you as well as a Honda Civic. Those qualities do not matter to him. He thinks the Civic is a lousy car.
 

Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
Of course it doesn't, which is why I continued with my reasoning. Pretending that's all I said for points, though... gkad that was enoufh to immediately pull you out of your third stated disengagement.

And your baseline is such that I can't think of a single RPG that fails to cross that threshold, which means it's pretty useless.

Ah, the same strawman from the start, nice to see it again, this time paired with a new one! Quote where I say the grade of beef has anything to do with TTRPGs. You can't. You can find it in response to a direct question to me about quality of steak, though.

Can we stop with the strawmen? That'd be swell.
Dude, I'm done engaging with you on this. Quality is in the eye of the beholder. Feel free to disagree.
 



Ovinomancer

No flips for you!
List elements that you think indicate quality.

Dollars to donuts, for each item on the list, you'll find someone around here who disagrees with you that it is a measure of the quality of a game.

How, then, is it not a matter of preference?

For something like a car, we define goals - we have a goal that people not die in car crashes, for example. Or a goal that the car not require expensive repairs often. If people don't get hurt, and the car needs little maintenance, we say it is a quality automobile. Most of us agree on these measures of quality, and agree what a quality car is.

But then along comes the joker who wants his car fast and fancy, and does not give a crumb about costs or personal risk, and he buys a Jaguar (in the US, they have a reputation for needing to go into the shop) or a Porche, which will not protect you as well as a Honda Civic. Those qualities do not matter to him. He thinks the Civic is a lousy car.
I have listed elements. I also pointed out that preference plays a part on whether or not you select a game based on thise elements. You use an example of selecting a car. Is the sports car's quality of safety changed by your preference that it's not important? Again, quality is an input to selection; it's not a requirement. A car can be very safe and I can not care about safety. This doesn't alter the quality of the safe car, it just means I prefer something different.

People seem to approach my argument from an assumption it's smuggling in a statement that choosing one game over another is a bad choice and using quality as the vehicle for this. It's not. The game you choose to play should, like art you buy, be because it speaks to you and you enjoy it. The quality of the work may be an input to this, but it's not defining. I can talk about how well a game is put together, how well it does things, and other factors of quality, and you can still like it ir not for whatever other reasons you want. 100% fine. But, insisting it's all opinion is saying there's no real difference between ganes except some preferences. This is silly on its face.

There's no lurking gotcha behind my posts.
 

Eric V

Hero
Just because I like something more than another thing, doesn't mean that first thing is of higher quality...it just means the latter thing hits my preferences better.

Since @pemerton brings up Age of Ultron a few times, I'll go with that: I know it's not a high quality movie, but having now seen it a few times, I enjoy it more.

Maybe that just means I like kitsch. Or that particular brand of kitsch. I have no trouble admitting that there are things I like that aren't of the highest quality. That doesn't mean that objective quality isn't a thing, though. John Stuart Mill's ideas about levels of pleasure might be worth looking at here.

5e, when talking about the quality of TTRPGs in general may end up being of a middling quality, but 5e is of very high quality in being D&D. As it was designed to do. It is very good at delivering a classic, non-offensive "D&D Experience" which include the sacred cows, the adventures mostly being reimaginings of classic adventures, etc. If I have a disparate group of people, each coming from a different D&D experience, the edition I will likely get the most buy-in for will be 5e. Hence, the Cheesecake Factory analogy.

(As well, 5e is popular because "popular" was a high priority (as evidenced by the extensive playtesting and data gathering), as well as a zeitgeist of other factors the design crew had no control over).
 

Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
Just because I like something more than another thing, doesn't mean that first thing is of higher quality...it just means the latter thing hits my preferences better.

Since @pemerton brings up Age of Ultron a few times, I'll go with that: I know it's not a high quality movie, but having now seen it a few times, I enjoy it more.

Maybe that just means I like kitsch. Or that particular brand of kitsch. I have no trouble admitting that there are things I like that aren't of the highest quality. That doesn't mean that objective quality isn't a thing, though. John Stuart Mill's ideas about levels of pleasure might be worth looking at here.

5e, when talking about the quality of TTRPGs in general may end up being of a middling quality, but 5e is of very high quality in being D&D. As it was designed to do. It is very good at delivering a classic, non-offensive "D&D Experience" which include the sacred cows, the adventures mostly being reimaginings of classic adventures, etc. If I have a disparate group of people, each coming from a different D&D experience, the edition I will likely get the most buy-in for will be 5e. Hence, the Cheesecake Factory analogy.

(As well, 5e is popular because "popular" was a high priority (as evidenced by the extensive playtesting and data gathering), as well as a zeitgeist of other factors the design crew had no control over).

I guess I would fundamentally disagree that Age of Ultron was not a quality movie. I mean, technically the CGI was very good. The acting for the nature of the film was excellent. It's goal, it's reason for existence was to make money for the studio by entertaining people which it succeeded at.

How else would you measure quality other than that it was successful at it's goals?
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
I guess I would fundamentally disagree that Age of Ultron was not a quality movie. I mean, technically the CGI was very good. The acting for the nature of the film was excellent. It's goal, it's reason for existence was to make money for the studio by entertaining people which it succeeded at.

How else would you measure quality other than that it was successful at it's goals?
There are lots of ways to measure quality other than it was successful at its creator's goals. That made it a quality film for them, but subjectively you could look at it with other metrics in mind and the quality will shift up or down depending on the film's success at these new metrics. For instance, if I were to take Age of Ultron and choose measure whether it was a quality Romantic Comedy, it would do very poorly.
 

Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
There are lots of ways to measure quality other than it was successful at its creator's goals. That made it a quality film for them, but subjectively you could look at it with other metrics in mind and the quality will shift up or down depending on the film's success at these new metrics. For instance, if I were to take Age of Ultron and choose measure whether it was a quality Romantic Comedy, it would do very poorly.
Of course. But what people call a "quality" film is often defined by social expectations and what people believe a quality movie should be based on other people's preferences.

To me it's all subjective. A Ford F-150 may be a high quality vehicle to a lot of people while while I think it's an oversized tank that serves little purpose other than being hard to park in my garage.
 

Ovinomancer

No flips for you!
Of course. But what people call a "quality" film is often defined by social expectations and what people believe a quality movie should be based on other people's preferences.

To me it's all subjective. A Ford F-150 may be a high quality vehicle to a lot of people while while I think it's an oversized tank that serves little purpose other than being hard to park in my garage.
A Ford F-150's quality is utterly unchanged by whether or not you like them or want them. You're confusing the utility of the product for you with quality.

I'm going to go out on a limb and say that you probably think you wouldn't like Blades in the Dark. Do you think this opinion of yours about BitD changes it's quality, or does it just change it's utility to you?
 

Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
A Ford F-150's quality is utterly unchanged by whether or not you like them or want them. You're confusing the utility of the product for you with quality.

I'm going to go out on a limb and say that you probably think you wouldn't like Blades in the Dark. Do you think this opinion of yours about BitD changes it's quality, or does it just change it's utility to you?
I've answered your questions. After a certain level of competence quality is in the eye of the beholder because different people will measure quality differently. Even more so for art and TTRPGs than vehicles.
 

Ovinomancer

No flips for you!
I've answered your questions. After a certain level of competence quality is in the eye of the beholder because different people will measure quality differently. Even more so for art and TTRPGs than vehicles.
Utility is the word you're looking for, here, not quality. For example, I can buy extremely high end, high quality paper to print out some character sheets, but that has low utility to me due to the cost. My thinking it's not worth it doesn't change the quality of the paper.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
A Ford F-150's quality is utterly unchanged by whether or not you like them or want them. You're confusing the utility of the product for you with quality.
It's a high quality vehicle, until a better quality vehicle comes along, then the new one is high quality and the F-150 isn't. Despite its quality not changing.
 


Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
Utility is the word you're looking for, here, not quality. For example, I can buy extremely high end, high quality paper to print out some character sheets, but that has low utility to me due to the cost. My thinking it's not worth it doesn't change the quality of the paper.
A friend told me once that the way he handled telemarketers was to answer every query with "I'm Batman". I've told you what I think. So from now on ....

I'm Batman.
 

I can talk about how well a game is put together, how well it does things, and other factors of quality, and you can still like it ir not for whatever other reasons you want.
How is it possible to have a concept of "doing X thing well" without, implicitly, saying X thing is valuable? How is it possible to indicate "put-together-ness" without a chosen metric of organization?
 

Ovinomancer

No flips for you!
How is it possible to have a concept of "doing X thing well" without, implicitly, saying X thing is valuable? How is it possible to indicate "put-together-ness" without a chosen metric of organization?
Blades in the Dark has a mechanic to do flashbacks. If you don't care for this, it's of no value to you, or even takes away value. That preference doesn't say anything at all about how well BitD does flashbacks.
 

pemerton

Legend
The consumer is the final judge of quality
Does this mean that, until the invention of "consumption" sometime in the last few hundred to few thousand years - depending how you want to draw various historical boundaries - nothing humans did was of any quality?

Or to come at the issue a different way: many people greatly admire a range of works of art produce in Italy in the early modern era. When those works were being produced, were the "consumers" - ie the patrons of the artists - determining their quality, or were they being led by the judgements of the artists whom they sponsored?

Impressionist painting was scandalous when it was first undertaken, and is mostly now highly prized. How did the quality change when the paintings remained unchanged?
 

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