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What Can We Learn from CRPGS?

If I may inquire - adapting for a table top game?

If so what do you think it dies differently?

And how do you make it work with dice...?

The player development, in attributes, skills, quirks, and perks, are all clearly explained, complete with percentile bonuses.

It has a very clean, involved, and interesting PC development and customization system.

Several video games have been made into TTRPGs.
 

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GMMichael

Guide of Modos
Absolutely nothing.

Every thing CRPGs do well, they do better than TTRPGs. The strength of TTRPGs is in the things that CRPGs can’t do (yet) that use a human DM and allow for a limitless world.
Welp, guess we'll just close the thread, then.

. . . Fast loading (compared to unprepared GMs).
Honestly, several times other players and I had the debate "why are we here playing lame D&D when we could be playing Skyrim?"
Ha, fast loading. That's an unfortunate debate you have. Yes, Skyrim allows you to sit at the bar, order a meal, rent a room for the night, get undressed, and crash out for 8 hours (10 if you've been killing dragons). But TRPGs allow you to invite the good-looking mercenary to crash with you. And replace the bard at the tavern the next day, because the old bard "had an accident."

CRPGs figured out that players wanted saveable games back in the 80s. I think TRPGs still haven't figured this out.
 


MGibster

Legend
- Teaching the rules as you go. This is a modern game convention in the form of "tutorial levels", but one that can be very useful to bring players into the game.
The 1st edition of Legend of the Five Rings had an introductory adventure designed to teach players about the setting, combat, and social interactions. Depending on the PCs clan choice and how well they do, it might even end with them committing seppuku. The 1st edition of L5R was particularly deadly but at least you couldn't die during character generation.
 

MGibster

Legend
- Gamism. Old school TTRPGs often erred on the side of simulationism. In the modern era, narritavism seems to be taking over. Sometimes it's important to remember gamist principles. CRPGs are rife with gamism that can be extremely rewarding. Of course, I say this as someone who prefers 3.Xe, so take this with a grain of salt.
I think this is fair. Often times I feel as though people treat RPGs as they would a work of fiction and forget the G stands for game.
 

I am probably a bit of a grognard on this front but for me, RPGs always offered a level of freedom that video games could never match. That is what first excited me about them, being the character in the movie and literally being able to try to do anything because you have a person there handling the process.
 

Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
Welp, guess we'll just close the thread, then.

I just think that there is an interesting question when it comes to the focus of the OP. In other words, the OP pre-supposes that TTRPGs should be looking at CRPGs for specific things that can be borrowed and put into TTRPGs.

I think that is entirely wrong. I think TTRPGs should look at what CRPGs are doing well, and not do those things. The strengths of TTRPGs and CRPGs are entirely different. To use a simple example, CRPGs will always be able to do complex math faster and more easily than TTRPGs; it would be mistake (IMO) to think that because CRPGs are really good at this, we should have more and more complex math in TTRPGs.

Instead of looking at what CRPGs do well, and copy it, TTRPGs should continue to focus on what CRPGs cannot do well, and exploit that advantage.
 

MGibster

Legend
I am probably a bit of a grognard on this front but for me, RPGs always offered a level of freedom that video games could never match. That is what first excited me about them, being the character in the movie and literally being able to try to do anything because you have a person there handling the process.
You're absolutely right that TTRPGs offer an unparalleled amount of freedom that CRPGS have yet to and may never achieve. That doesn't mean we can't take something from the CRPG experience and adapt it from our table top games though.
 

You're absolutely right that TTRPGs offer an unparalleled amount of freedom that CRPGS have yet to and may never achieve. That doesn't mean we can't take something from the CRPG experience and adapt it from our table top games though.

Sure that is true. I just would be wary personally, as any time an RPG feels too 'video-gamey' for me, I tend to lose interest. Not saying it can't be done. I remember the Dragon Age RPG actually being very good for example. I think it depends on what you are taking from video games.
 

MGibster

Legend
I just think that there is an interesting question when it comes to the focus of the OP. In other words, the OP pre-supposes that TTRPGs should be looking at CRPGs for specific things that can be borrowed and put into TTRPGs.
The OP said nothing about what you should be doing.
But what can the TTRPG crowd learn from CRPGs?
I didn't say you should learn anything I asked what you could learn. And you answered nothing which, as Bobby Brown will agree, is your prerogative. You're answer is certainly valid but it doesn't exactly leave us with much to talk about.
 

Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
The OP said nothing about what you should be doing.

I didn't say you should learn anything I asked what you could learn. And you answered nothing which, as Bobby Brown will agree, is your prerogative. You're answer is certainly valid but it doesn't exactly leave us with much to talk about.

Nope.
I don’t think you understood what I just wrote.

What we should learn is in the negative space. In other words, not what they do well, but what they don’t.

I thought that was clear from my answer.
 

GMMichael

Guide of Modos
It’s a great mechanic and seems lifted from Grand Theft Auto.
Puns intended?

One thing to be careful of - TRPGs can't match CRPG visual excitement. Trying to recreate a chase/road scene from GTA would probably leave some players wanting more (pixels).

In a way they have. Raising the dead is a thing, in D&D at least.
Yeah, that's a way. But what I don't understand is this: a game can say "you take 32 damage from dragon breath, but you're not permanently disfigured," while it refuses to say, "your character is dead. Would you like a redo?"

Heck, TRPGs can do save-games better than CRPGs, because the GM can "reload" from literally any point in time, and even change the location. And the GM might even forget that the hermit ogre that got the lucky TPK got a +2 bonus to attacks from the special incense burning on the campfire...
 

Puddles

Explorer
My custom injury systems was inspired by a computer game (which ironically, is the sequel of an adaption of a tabletop game that was inspired by D&D - Warhammer Quest 2). I had this coin-drop moment when I saw their injuries system was not full of permanent effects but instead temporary setbacks. You don’t lose a leg or get a permanent limp, you might just have broken or sprained it instead and it’ll heal at the end of the dungeon.

Beforehand I had been stuck in basing my injury systems off 90s wargames like Necromunda. You can see the same in the DMG where its suggested list of injuries are 90% permanent if you don’t have access to magical healing.

Making them temporary was the inspiration I needed to making the system fun - players don’t want to retire their character after they take an arrow to the knee, but if one of them has to be strapped to a sled and given a crossbow while you race across the tundra pursed by packs of winter wolves as you try to get back to town - well that’s an awesome experience.

I also like to design my dungeons like Zelda dungeons with a central chamber and a few branching routes. Having something that can alter the dungeon makeup too is a great twist - for example I have one where lighting oil braziers in rooms transforms that room into the past where the passage might not be blocked, but it is filled with the original denizens (or malign echoes of them) and they aren’t happy to see intruders, (there’s a computer game that does something similar). I’ve always wanted to do a dungeon with rising water levels like the Water Temple in Ocarina of Time, maybe one day.

I take a lot of abilities and special moves from Pokémon too. My players fought against a yeti that brought down a hailstorm mid-battle - that’s a Pokémon move lol. There are some pretty out-there moves in Pokémon, for example “Trick Room” flips the initiative order of the battle for 3 rounds - imagine a spell caster that could do that! Another called “Special Room” switches everyone’s defence and special defence stats around. Imagine a spell that flipped everyone’s Strength and Dex for a round!

Anyways, there is loads of little bits of inspiration to take from computer games in general and especially CRPGs.
 
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Jaeger

That someone better.
...CRPGs figured out that players wanted saveable games back in the 80s. I think TRPGs still haven't figured this out.

This is a feature, not a bug of RPG's.

I think this is fair. Often times I feel as though people treat RPGs as they would a work of fiction and forget the G stands for game.

Truth, this mistaken mindset is becoming more noticeable.

I am probably a bit of a grognard on this front but for me, RPGs always offered a level of freedom that video games could never match. That is what first excited me about them, being the character in the movie and literally being able to try to do anything because you have a person there handling the process.

This!!!

Video games just can't match the entirety of a full RPG experience.

I will say that this is qualified by the need to have a good GM, and group of players that click.

But a solid RPG gaming group vs. videogames; the electronic box no can defend.
 



This!!!

Video games just can't match the entirety of a full RPG experience.

I will say that this is qualified by the need to have a good GM, and group of players that click.

But a solid RPG gaming group vs. videogames; the electronic box no can defend.

Maybe, but if it is true, it is a truth that is steadily being eroded.

Sitting on a ridge in Fallout watching NPCs from various factions having a firefight that has nothing to do with my party gives a sense of world that I have never gotten at any table since '79.

The one thing that TTRPGs have had that video games could not match was the social interaction, but that has passed with the establishment of MMOs.

While I would not give up my weekly F2F game, the simple truth is that I log far more time at the PC and various game platforms than rolling dice. And video games are available at any time, for any duration, and always at the same level of competence.

For now TT games have a slight edge, but I remember the transition of war games from F2F into Net and AI-based games. It will come.
 

Aldarc

Legend
But what can the TTRPG crowd learn from CRPGs? For this thread, I'd like you to give us an example of what a computer game did right and how you can apply it to traditional table top RPG. For the purpose of this thread, let's not quibble too much on what constitutes a CRPG and instead focus on how the game inspired someone to improve their own tabletop experience. I'll go first.
I would potentially look outside of CRPGs, such as at Metroidvania games, which present environments where players may encounter challenges or locked areas they can't solve until they reach another part of the game or acquire particular skills, weapons, tools, or abilities. Metroidvania, for example, seems like it would lend itself well to dungeon design. TTRPGs do have elements of this, but these design principles have a greater articulation and stronger grasp in Metroidvania games.

I think this is fair. Often times I feel as though people treat RPGs as they would a work of fiction and forget the G stands for game.
This is one of my biggest issues sometimes with discussions that I've had here.

It’s a great mechanic and seems lifted from Grand Theft Auto.
Also the general TTRPG advice of "playing characters like stolen cars" likewise seems lifted from GTA.
 

Jaeger

That someone better.
...The one thing that TTRPGs have had that video games could not match was the social interaction, but that has passed with the establishment of MMOs. ...

Completely disagree.

MMO = Experience a videogame's restrictive gameplay, but now with more people!

Quell enthusiasm...

Wargames are not even remotely as social an activity as RPG's. A complete apples to oranges comparison.

And you cannot socially interact over an MMO feed even remotely the same as with someone sitting across a table.
 

Completely disagree.

MMO = Experience a videogame's restrictive gameplay, but now with more people!

Quell enthusiasm...

Wargames are not even remotely as social an activity as RPG's. A complete apples to oranges comparison.

And you cannot socially interact over an MMO feed even remotely the same as with someone sitting across a table.

YRMV.

I don't find the true sandbox settings to be restrictive at all. Whereas there are few if any truly sandbox TTRPGs.

I got into wargames in the early 70s, before RPGs spouted, and they were highly social, more so than TTRPGs ever have been; war gaming clubs were where RPGs were born.

I've been part of many excellent groups in Fallout 76, for example, that easily equaled or exceeded F2F play.

And face it: the quality and complexity of video games continues to grow steadily, with VR bringing entire new levels of amazing.

Meanwhile, in TTRPG we have endless reams of 5e splatbooks, and remakes of systems built in the 80s.
 

MGibster

Legend
Wargames are not even remotely as social an activity as RPG's. A complete apples to oranges comparison.
Given the roots of D&D can be found in table top war gaming, the idea that we're comparing apples to oranges is a bit off I think. And even if they were so far apart as to be incomparable, I've engaged in just as much socializing while playing Star Fleet Battles, Car Wars, Babylon 5 Wars, etc., etc. that I have with D&D or Cyberpunk 2020. Almost any kind of face-to-face gaming you're doing is an inherently social activity.
 

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