The Importance of Defined Mechanical Tactical Options

overgeeked

B/X Known World
Emphasis mine.

I think FKR is a reference to Free Kriegspiel (sp?),
Yes, it is. Free Kriegsspiel Renaissance.
but what is a "black box game"?
A game where the referee runs the rules and the players play their characters. The player tells the referee what they want to do, the referee crunches the numbers, maybe even rolls for the player, and tells the player the result. The player does not interact with the game system directly. Think of the ultimate beginner game. "Don't worry about the sheet or the book, just tell me what you want to do and I'll tell you what happens."
 

log in or register to remove this ad

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
This entirely depends on the game. For example I run Masks: A New Generation and there are zero mechanically defined tactical options. Not a one. Heck, the players superpowers aren't mechanically defined, and it's a supers game*. As long as the player and the GM have a general alignment on what it can do (and therefore the ways that it can be used to adjust the narrative), it's good.

For a non-RPG wargame, I'd want them all to be mechanically defined.

For most RPGs, it depends where on the spectrum it falls in terms of crunchiness of combat mechanically. D&D is more zoomed in and mechanically crunchy on combat than any other pillar of play, and has been since the beginning. As it was not just the roadmap but the whole entire road, many, many systems took after it. But things have diverged over time.

* It's a white lie it's a supers game. It's a teen drama and finding yourself game, set in the context of a teen supers team.
 

Reynard

Legend
Yes, it is. Free Kriegsspiel Renaissance.
One of these days I need to try one of those.
A game where the referee runs the rules and the players play their characters. The player tells the referee what they want to do, the referee crunches the numbers, maybe even rolls for the player, and tells the player the result. The player does not interact with the game system directly. Think of the ultimate beginner game. "Don't worry about the sheet or the book, just tell me what you want to do and I'll tell you what happens."
I have always meant to run a game like this, but I feel like you would really want to curate your players.
 


billd91

Not your screen monkey (he/him)
This entirely depends on the game. For example I run Masks: A New Generation and there are zero mechanically defined tactical options. Not a one.
I am going to disagree on that. Individual playbooks have mechanically defined moves that have tactical implications. The fact that there is some loosey-gooseyness in how the results are defined doesn't change the fact that, for example, the Legacy could Directly Engage a Threat and add their Danger and have a full suite of options for the results or could use their Fight the Good Fight playbook move to use their (likely higher) Savior for a higher chance of success but without as many options for the result. That's a tactical choice.
 

mamba

Legend
I see them as the martial equivalent to the caster’s spells, they should be plentiful, versatile, and well defined. As a DM I do not want to have to always decide what works and what it does, just because the game did not bother to do so
 

Thomas Shey

Legend
I am torn, myself. When they exist, it ensures that players know they can do a thing. But when they exist, they often make players feel like they can only do defined things.

Well, honestly, if you're willing to extend them a little, the defined things cover most of the practical things anyway. But that requires doing some lifting and not just doing "trip" and "disarm" and calling it a day.
 

Thomas Shey

Legend
I see them as the martial equivalent to the caster’s spells, they should be plentiful, versatile, and well defined. As a DM I do not want to have to always decide what works and what it does, just because the game did not bother to do so

This is pretty much where I sit as a GM; at the other end I don't find (at least with things I'm going to do frequently) having to second guess the GM's view of what I'm doing as being workable or not a virtue.
 

Pedantic

Legend
This is pretty much where I sit as a GM; at the other end I don't find (at least with things I'm going to do frequently) having to second guess the GM's view of what I'm doing as being workable or not a virtue.
This is precisely it. I want tools and arms I can take up against myriad problems and enemies.
 

Remove ads

AD6_gamerati_skyscraper

Remove ads

Upcoming Releases

Top