PF Wizkids should take the Pathfinder 1.0 ruleset and publish their own RPG.

Imaro

Adventurer
For it's class, for what it is trying to do, McDonald's is king. At being Fast Food, it is the best.
Yep pretty much this... if the most important thing about fast food was quality then McDonalds would be mediocre but since we all know it's not... you're right it's pretty much the most popular and the most successful at what it aspires to be.

It's akin to saying 5e is mediocre in it's aspects as a boardgame or wargame... duh it's a roleplaying game.
 

Saelorn

Adventurer
How confident are you that, if we walked through any convention game hall, or into any FLGS in the nation, and watched a game, I'd not be able to point out a dozen instances of metagame thinking in a given session? I don't think you should be at all confident about that.
Just because you think something looks like meta-gaming, that doesn't mean it actually is. Most people give far too little credit to the characters, who actually live in these worlds, to recognize how their world actually works. I would give you the benefit of the doubt, that you have a pretty good sense of how our own world actually works, at least when it comes to things you encounter on a regular basis. It's unfair to not extend that courtesy to these hypothetical characters, within their game world.

If the rules of the game reflect the reality of the game world, then the decisions a character makes based on their understanding of that reality will necessarily parallel the decisions that the players make based on the rules. Without it, role-playing would be impossible, because we'd never be able to see the world as our character sees it.
Given that, the question isn't about what the game encourages. It is about what the game will support. And, guess what? FATE will work fine if you limit yourself to non-metagame decisions. Your aspects can be chosen to describe entirely in-game abilities and backstory.
FATE literally tells the players to make decisions based on the story. Repeatedly. It would be a lot easier to play without meta-gaming, if the rules weren't constantly telling you to do so. (Although it wouldn't likely be very satisfying, since you're more likely to fail later if you don't opt to fail early, because you'll run out of the meta-game currency that they expect you to have.)
 

Campbell

Relaxed Intensity
I think we should be specific about which version we are referring to when we speak about Dungeons and Dragons. In early versions which I still play metagaming aversion is not a feature of the play culture. What you call metagaming we call skilled play.

Now other games I play are different. Apocalypse World instructs players to play their character with integrity.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
I hope you don't mind my clarifying my terse overview:
Not at all. Clarification is good, and can lead to productive discussion.

Here, I also had in mind things like how a AD&D fighter would become a "lord" at level 9, but a player in Fate could declare that their fighting-person a "lord" in their aspect at the very beginning. You can start as a "grizzled veteran of a thousand wars" or something in Fate.
Yes. But note how, "You can do X" doesn't really strongly argue, "You cannot do not-X". The fact that you can start the game as a "grizzled veteran of a thousand wars" doesn't mean the game is not designed to handle starting as "green recruit" and growing into "grizzled veteran" - this the game does well, but we have to note that the power curve in the game isn't particularly steep. As you go from green to veteran, your gains in outright power will be modest, but your overall change into a different person can be substantial.

Here, I meant more in Lanefan's sense of exploration and dungeon crawls that focuses on skilled play, simulated prefixed environments, and the like.
Okay, so, here's a thing we need to crack open. We can agree, I think, that skilled play in soccer looks very little like skilled play in chess, yes? I mean, yes, there's some bits about strategy and positioning and pace and pressure, but really, playing one doesn't make you good at the other. So, I submit that skilled play in wargame-leaning D&D looks a whole lot different from skilled play in Fate. But, that doesn't mean skilled play is not involved in Fate. Any game can focus on skilled play, or not - but what skills are involved may be different.

It may be fair to say that Fate does not involve the skills he (or any particular person) finds fun to exercise.

Fate, IMHO, usually has more blank spaces in its play that are filled by the proactive play of players. For example, a character with the aspect "Disgraced Bodyguard of the Prince" could invoke their aspect to declare a narrative fact that is consistent with the fiction: e.g., "Because I was a bodyguard for the prince, I know that there is a secret escape route into the manor that connects the kitchen to the shed in the garden." The GM can accept the fate point and go with the new narrative fiction. This sort of thing doesn't really jive well with Lanefan's own sense of what D&D exploration and dungeon crawls entail.
Okay. 1) The GM can. Not must.

2) So, there's a story of a guy who goes to a doctor, and says, "Hey Doc, it hurts when I do this." The doctor replies, "Well, don't do that!"

This can be handled by saying, "Hey, folks, I'm going for a particular feel in this game, please don't spend fate points to Declare Story Details (that what this is called in the Fate SRD)." This will not break the system. The intent of the rule is largely shift the burden of creation off the GM - so when a player wants to ask, "Hey, is there a chandelier here, my plan really calls for me to swing from it, if there is one," the GM can just make them pay a bit for the convenience, and let it go. If you want to shift that burden back, just eliminate that one use of Fate points, and you are back in the traditional mode. In my experience, this is the least commonly used power of the Fate Point anyway. Nothing will melt if you don't use it at all.

Here, I was referring more to the grid-based movement tactics here as opposed to the more abstract Creating an Advantage and Invoking Aspects actions where a lot of the tactical scene-engagement comes into play. Fate wasn't built out of a tactical skirmish wargame. D&D was.
Yep. I'm happy to refer to this as the D&D wargame aspect. And yes, Fate is not a wargame - this hearkens back to the discussion of skilled play - if what you are looking for is the number crunching of Advanced Squad Leader, Fate will not provide that experience. No argument.

I should note, though, that the Fate mechanics you are using there you describe as "abstract" - they are always used in terms concrete to the situation in the game. In D&D and attack action is abstract - it is only a concrete thing when you actually put it in a context, like a slavering orc coming at you, and you add in what you attack with - "I attack the slavering orc with my sword," is concrete. Similarly, you don't create an abstract advantage. You drop your "Banana peel underfoot" that happens to be an advantage because the slavering orc needs to dodge it. The thing that happens in the session is concrete - it is only abstract when we discuss it sans context.

Traps and puzzles are often part of the resource management game, a means to whittle things like HP and spells. Fate's not really into that.
Yeah. Go into the boss fight having filled up many stress boxes, having taken some Consequences, and used up all your Fate Points on small stuff, and then come back and tell me that. :)

But, really, puzzles in D&D are by tradition, not by mechanical design. The only mechanics D&D has that directly speak to puzzles are the find/remove traps skill, and the 4e Skill Challenge, which does not exist in any other system edition. Everything else is a GM choosing to wedge an ad hoc challenge in that will happen to eat up resources. You can do that in any game.

Create an Advantage, invoking aspects, aspect permissions, declare a story detail, conceding a conflict, compels, etc.
Move, attack, cast spell, use skill/class feature, interact with environment, dodge help, etc. In the abstract, the list of things isn't long in either game.
 

Xenonnonex

Adventurer
I said that a lot of games (i.e., not all games) are just retreading similar ideas and reskinning ideas and mechanics not that some of them aren't innovating. You are attempting to falsify a different hypothesis than the one that was put forth, hence why I find your argument to come across as pedantic.
Thank you for clarifying your sentence. It is appreciated.

In one of your earlier posts you said
I have not seen all that much in the way of innovative mechanics come out of the 5e compatible lines. A lot of retreading of similar ideas with reskinned ideas and mechanics. So I'm not sure if "creative" comes to my mind when I look through 5e compatible materials. The market ubiquity is connected with the stifling of creativity. There are a lot of overlapping products doing the same thing with little actual mechanical innovations.
Please correct me if I am wrong. But is the above not your initial hypothesis? I have only been addressing this. The examples thus far I have posted have proved this hypothesis incorrect.

I would have hoped you have understood why the analogy was not irrelevant - boy was I mistaken - because it is illustrative of the sort nitpicky, pedantic games that you are trying to play. "Ah ha! You are moving when you breath," is on a similar level as "Ah ha! There is a slightly new mechanic in this game so it innovated."

It seems to me that if you were "taking it at face value and I am approaching it from a fair and reasonable viewpoint" then you wouldn't be trying to play these pedantic games.
Arguing that innovation technically happened but denying this innovation is actually innovation is an exercise in denial.

When you look at it in detail, it's less of an actual mechanic and more story fluff that is meant to provide an in-game hook for your character. What is the actual impact of play for this mechanic? It's kinda underwhelming given the relative emphasis the Kickstarter had on this. You can find a more robust version of "Epic Paths" with Primeval Thule's "Character Narratives," which are also similar to the ladders you mention below.
The mechanics are tied into your story. From the epic path you take and through the heroic task you accomplish you get access to one lesser and one greater magic item. You also get a divine blessing. I am sure you realize the actual impacts of these mechanics in play.

Now correct me if I am wrong, but isn't Ultramodern5 just the 5e update/conversion of Ultramodern4 that was written for the 4th Edition D&D OGL? And was it not this prior iteration of Ultramodern that innovated the idea of ladders that would coexist with your class choice? And aren't these ladders not an iteration of the Character Themes from 4e Dark Sun? :unsure:
I am curious to see the mechanics of these from 4e.

Regarding lifepaths, they even say it themselves in the book that lifepaths are just an expansion of backgrounds. From what I can tell, lifepaths seem to repackage a similar idea from Traveller albeit stripped of any mechanical weight as it applies to generating a character's backstory fluff.
The lifepaths offer so much more than what is given in a background. And you do not get the standard fare with backgrounds. With the lifepath you further mechanically clarify and fluff your character through an array of tables for origins and life events.

Didn't Imaro and Parmandur establish earlier in this thread that the DMG already has its own optional mechanics for this? ;)
If you do take the time to compare and read between Sandy Petersen's Cthulhu Mythos for 5e and the DMG you will realize they are actually different.

I can save you some time and say that I believe that Pugmire is probably one of the more innovative offerings because it crunches the game to 10 levels, streamlines some aspects of the game (though arguably not enough), and while also deconstructing the game and its character options. (It does reskin a lot though.) If it was decoupled from its somewhat charming anthromorphic setting and deconstructed further, then it would have a lot of potential as a 5e Accelerated or even as the basis for a revitalized 5e Modern.
Pugmire looks like a game to watch. But none of what you write devalues the other examples of their innovative offerings.
 

darjr

I crit!
I used to love mcdonalds. Then I stopped eating candy and fast food in general. And the smell of the place now makes me a little sick.
 

Campbell

Relaxed Intensity
I am not terribly concerned about these 5th Edition Powered games using 5th Edition as their base rather than some house system. I was not terribly concerned under the d20 boom either. I do not think these game would meaningfully play differently or use some other sort of set of play procedures if they were designed to use house systems.

I try maintain an indie spirit. You do you. I will be over here doing my own thing. Some popular things are good, but not like because they are popular. Some unpopular things are also good. Some unpopular things are bad, but not because they are unpopular. Let's talk about games: what they do well and what they do not do well.

What I do take some level of issue with are when some 5th Edition fans use its popularity to make people with different preferences feel as if they are irrelevant and their preferences do not matter. It might be the case that catering to their preferences would harm the game's popularity. Please say that with compassion instead. If they are not talking about popularity let's just like deal with the actual design and the kind of play it works for. There is also the issue which is a broader problem with discussion boards where some people seek to invalidate some people's experiences instead of hearing them out. This happens on all sides of every issue, but it is like not cool.
 

Zardnaar

Hero
McDonalds isn't that bad here, I tend to avoid the sodas and fries.

I've seen the ingredients being made at the farm and meat it's not any worse than anything similar.
 
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Xenonnonex

Adventurer
I am not terribly concerned about these 5th Edition Powered games using 5th Edition as their base rather than some house system. I was not terribly concerned under the d20 boom either. I do not think these game would meaningfully play differently or use some other sort of set of play procedures if they were designed to use house systems.

I try maintain an indie spirit. You do you. I will be over here doing my own thing. Some popular things are good, but not like because they are popular. Some unpopular things are also good. Some unpopular things are bad, but not because they are unpopular. Let's talk about games: what they do well and what they do not do well.

What I do take some level of issue with are when some 5th Edition fans use its popularity to make people with different preferences feel as if they are irrelevant and their preferences do not matter. It might be the case that catering to their preferences would harm the game's popularity. Please say that with compassion instead. If they are not talking about popularity let's just like deal with the actual design and the kind of play it works for. There is also the issue which is a broader problem with discussion boards where some people seek to invalidate some people's experiences instead of hearing them out. This happens on all sides of every issue, but it is like not cool.
Yes. This cannot be understated.

Adding onto your point even while not a great fan of 5e I take some level of issue with those who call 5e fans mindlessly fanatical knights and seek to invalidate their opinions.
 

Saelorn

Adventurer
Define "metagaming". Then we can talk.
We already agree on that definition. Our disagreement is on whether the rules of the game reflect information which is available to the characters.

Either the rules of the game reflect the reality of the game world, in which case it's possible to role-play the way we've been doing for decades; or they don't, in which case role-playing is impossible because we have no idea how their world actually works, and we have no idea what these characters should be thinking.

If role-playing is impossible, then the whole hobby is a lie, and these forums have no reason to exist. I reject the degenerate solution. Therefore, assuming a solution does exist, it must be that the rules of the game reflect the reality of the game world; in which case we're fine to play the game as always, as long as we don't explicitly try and meta-game. You know, the way FATE explicitly tells you to meta-game, but which D&D 5E explicitly condemns.
 

Arilyn

Adventurer
We already agree on that definition. Our disagreement is on whether the rules of the game reflect information which is available to the characters.

Either the rules of the game reflect the reality of the game world, in which case it's possible to role-play the way we've been doing for decades; or they don't, in which case role-playing is impossible because we have no idea how their world actually works, and we have no idea what these characters should be thinking.

If role-playing is impossible, then the whole hobby is a lie, and these forums have no reason to exist. I reject the degenerate solution. Therefore, assuming a solution does exist, it must be that the rules of the game reflect the reality of the game world; in which case we're fine to play the game as always, as long as we don't explicitly try and meta-game. You know, the way FATE explicitly tells you to meta-game, but which D&D 5E explicitly condemns.
There is no way that any D&D game mirrors any kind of sensible reality. 😂 Fate, even with its fate point economy, gives me a much more immersive experience, because it at least feels like I'm in an adventure story, that more closely resembles fiction.

HP are abstract to the point of video game logic, whereas in Fate a wound has consequences that feel realistic.

I know this is a useless argument to have with you, but honestly, there is no pure role playing technique that has been lost with more modern RPGs. I have cool characters in D&D, and I have cool characters in Fate. Preferences are personal, but to claim D&D solidly rejects meta gaming is amusing, as Umbran pointed out.
 

Aldarc

Adventurer
The fact that you can start the game as a "grizzled veteran of a thousand wars" doesn't mean the game is not designed to handle starting as "green recruit" and growing into "grizzled veteran" - this the game does well, but we have to note that the power curve in the game isn't particularly steep. As you go from green to veteran, your gains in outright power will be modest, but your overall change into a different person can be substantial.
I most definitely agree. What I would also note is how that experience contrasts with D&D, where there is a more clearly defined level-based power progression. So it may be more accurate to say that Fate is not necessarily interested in emulating zero-to-hero. It's interested in emulating narrative-based character progression.

It may be fair to say that Fate does not involve the skills he (or any particular person) finds fun to exercise.
Again, agreed.

This can be handled by saying, "Hey, folks, I'm going for a particular feel in this game, please don't spend fate points to Declare Story Details (that what this is called in the Fate SRD)." This will not break the system. The intent of the rule is largely shift the burden of creation off the GM - so when a player wants to ask, "Hey, is there a chandelier here, my plan really calls for me to swing from it, if there is one," the GM can just make them pay a bit for the convenience, and let it go. If you want to shift that burden back, just eliminate that one use of Fate points, and you are back in the traditional mode. In my experience, this is the least commonly used power of the Fate Point anyway. Nothing will melt if you don't use it at all.
Sure, but I would still say that even if one were to remove Declare Story Details, that Fate typically works with blank spaces rather than predefined environments. How many dungeon-like maps can you recall have been made for Fate games?

I should note, though, that the Fate mechanics you are using there you describe as "abstract" - they are always used in terms concrete to the situation in the game. In D&D and attack action is abstract - it is only a concrete thing when you actually put it in a context, like a slavering orc coming at you, and you add in what you attack with - "I attack the slavering orc with my sword," is concrete. Similarly, you don't create an abstract advantage. You drop your "Banana peel underfoot" that happens to be an advantage because the slavering orc needs to dodge it. The thing that happens in the session is concrete - it is only abstract when we discuss it sans context.
Again, I agree that my explanation was a bit too reductionist here.

Yeah. Go into the boss fight having filled up many stress boxes, having taken some Consequences, and used up all your Fate Points on small stuff, and then come back and tell me that. :)
Your stress is cleared after a scene, so unless the boss fight is in the same scene then it will probably be cleared. You will still have Consequences and a lack of Fate points. I still don't think that this resource game is of the same nature as the resource game that D&D often entails with HP and spell slots. The notion of a 15-minute adventuring day, for example, is virtually unheard of in Fate. Again, this was more about the points of conflict in Fate with the sort of things that Lanefan has expressed as desirable in their games.

You know, the way FATE explicitly tells you to meta-game, but which D&D 5E explicitly condemns.
Having been in this debate before in other contexts, I can tell you that it doesn't condemn metagaming in the 5E DMG. It provides suggestions for discouraging or curbing it should you choose to, but that is not equivalent to condemning it. Plus, I think that the language of curbing metagaming is an admission that it is unavoidable consequence of players being aware that they are playing a game.
 

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