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Author Topic: "Sorceror": What's the big deal?  (Read 2938 times)

akiva

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"Sorceror": What's the big deal?
« on: December 27, 2012, 11:00:14 AM »
I'm not trying to open a new Ron Edwards bashing thread; there are plenty of those already. I'm trying to get a handle on why some people lavish so much praise on "Sorceror." I've read through it, but haven't played it, and the game struck me as nothing special--just another fairly rules-light modern supernatural with pretensions of greatness.

Did I miss something? Is there actually something good and/or new there? Or is the hype for the game simply Edwards sycophants talking it up?

CRKrueger

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"Sorceror": What's the big deal?
« Reply #1 on: December 27, 2012, 11:03:27 AM »
Quote from: akiva;611850
I'm not trying to open a new Ron Edwards bashing thread; there are plenty of those already. I'm trying to get a handle on why some people lavish so much praise on "Sorceror." I've read through it, but haven't played it, and the game struck me as nothing special--just another fairly rules-light modern supernatural with pretensions of greatness.

Did I miss something? Is there actually something good and/or new there? Or is the hype for the game simply Edwards sycophants talking it up?


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danbuter

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"Sorceror": What's the big deal?
« Reply #2 on: December 27, 2012, 11:34:35 AM »
Sorcerer was not that amazing. Some of the supplements made for it were decent, though. My biggest issue is that Edwards used it as a screed for the GNS theory, which he detailed in the game for no good reason.
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soviet

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"Sorceror": What's the big deal?
« Reply #3 on: December 27, 2012, 11:55:19 AM »
I'm not sure that Sorcerer gets all that much attention these days. I think the main innovations are kickers and bangs, which are a way of making story creation more of a group process and less of a GM-driven thing. But it's fairly easy to port those techniques over to other games.

Sorcerer and Sword is a pretty good supplement too, although I never really got much from the other ones.
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vytzka

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"Sorceror": What's the big deal?
« Reply #4 on: December 27, 2012, 12:00:53 PM »
Mostly, it was the cover.

I mean, look at it. You wouldn't want to pull that out on a bus.






... oh.

You mean Ron Edward's Sorceror? I have no idea, I have never seen or heard of anyone playing it. Even on TBP, come to think of it.

akiva

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"Sorceror": What's the big deal?
« Reply #5 on: December 27, 2012, 12:24:49 PM »
Wow, what a dick move to change the forum. One person, who clearly has a bias against such games, decides that Sorceror isn't an RPG, so therefore it can't be discussed it the RPG forum? What a petty, douchey, dick move.

BedrockBrendan

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"Sorceror": What's the big deal?
« Reply #6 on: December 27, 2012, 12:33:33 PM »
Quote from: akiva;611912
Wow, what a dick move to change the forum. One person, who clearly has a bias against such games, decides that Sorceror isn't an RPG, so therefore it can't be discussed it the RPG forum? What a petty, douchey, dick move.


Not every poster agrees with the categorization of subforums here, but this is the one game everybody knows pundit would classify as a storygame, non rpg. It is his forum and he sets the rules for how its organized. You had to know it would get moved when you started the thread. If you want to debate labels about storygames, open a thread about it in the help desk (or participate in the thread on the forge in pundit's subforum).

As I pointed out in another thread, you are still free to talk about this game hereit is no further away from the general rpg forum is than the "pathfinder/D&D" subforums are on most other message boards.

misterguignol

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"Sorceror": What's the big deal?
« Reply #7 on: December 27, 2012, 12:34:35 PM »
Quote from: akiva;611912
Wow, what a dick move to change the forum. One person, who clearly has a bias against such games, decides that Sorceror isn't an RPG, so therefore it can't be discussed it the RPG forum? What a petty, douchey, dick move.


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misterguignol

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"Sorceror": What's the big deal?
« Reply #8 on: December 27, 2012, 12:41:28 PM »
Anyway, Sorcerer seems like a pretty trad RPG to me that doesn't really have much that makes it stand-out from the pack.  You create your character and you make choices from that character's perspective; I don't remember any "story editing" mechanics or anything like that.

Maybe the Kicks and Bangs thing that sets up some immediate concerns was novel for its time (Sorcerer is kind of an old game at this point) but to be honest I played in group doing things like that before there were names for them.

So, even though Sorcerer doesn't have bells and whistles I think it can still be a fun game if that is what you're into.  I'd like to use it to run a game of Victorian occultists getting in over their heads during the occult revival of the fin de siecle.

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"Sorceror": What's the big deal?
« Reply #9 on: December 27, 2012, 01:14:48 PM »
Quote from: soviet;611889
I'm not sure that Sorcerer gets all that much attention these days. I think the main innovations are kickers and bangs, which are a way of making story creation more of a group process and less of a GM-driven thing. But it's fairly easy to port those techniques over to other games.

Sorcerer and Sword is a pretty good supplement too, although I never really got much from the other ones.

Kickers and Bangs were not really innovations. I had been using them since the late seventies in my game sessions, and I didn't come up with the concept myself. He was the just first to name and codify some parts of a gaming style that had been around for a very long time in the community.

Quote from: misterguignol;611920
Maybe the Kicks and Bangs thing that sets up some immediate concerns was novel for its time (Sorcerer is kind of an old game at this point) but to be honest I played in group doing things like that before there were names for them.

See what I mean? :D

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« Last Edit: December 27, 2012, 01:17:30 PM by flyingmice »
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LePete

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"Sorceror": What's the big deal?
« Reply #10 on: December 27, 2012, 01:55:27 PM »
Quote from: misterguignol;611920
Sorcerer is kind of an old game at this point.

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soviet

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"Sorceror": What's the big deal?
« Reply #11 on: December 27, 2012, 02:15:39 PM »
Quote from: flyingmice;611933
Kickers and Bangs were not really innovations. I had been using them since the late seventies in my game sessions, and I didn't come up with the concept myself. He was the just first to name and codify some parts of a gaming style that had been around for a very long time in the community.

Oh absolutely, I'm quite sure that's true. There's nothing new under the sun and all that. This is a hobby that's all about people going off and doing their own thing, I doubt there's a single published 'innovation' after and including D&D that hasn't already been done by at least one other group. Identifying an existing good practice, polishing it up a bit, formalising it into words, and sharing it with  a new crowd of people is pretty much all that any game can do. I'd still count those things as innovations in the context of the published games that did them first.
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Future Villain Band

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"Sorceror": What's the big deal?
« Reply #12 on: December 27, 2012, 02:57:55 PM »
It's not a great game, it's not a terrible game. It's a vehicle for the author's ideas, and therein lies the value -- if you think those ideas are interesting, then it's going to have more value for you.  

I used to kind of hold the game at arm's length, and be a little embarrassed to talk about what I saw as its shortcomings, thinking I wasn't getting it, but at the end of the day, there's not a lot there in that basic rulebook, and some of the more useful information is kind of skirted over.  The system's kind of pedestrian, and I prefer a few more bells and whistles.  With that said, formalizing kickers and bangs as something that drive play is neat, even if people had been doing it for years before that, I don't recall seeing it as the core story design system formally placed in an RPG before Sorcerer came out.

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"Sorceror": What's the big deal?
« Reply #13 on: December 27, 2012, 02:58:01 PM »
Quote from: akiva;611850
I'm not trying to open a new Ron Edwards bashing thread; there are plenty of those already. I'm trying to get a handle on why some people lavish so much praise on "Sorceror." I've read through it, but haven't played it, and the game struck me as nothing special--just another fairly rules-light modern supernatural with pretensions of greatness.

Did I miss something? Is there actually something good and/or new there? Or is the hype for the game simply Edwards sycophants talking it up?


I have played it many times, and it's a good fun game, excellent for one-shots and short campaigns. It is flexible, and it formalizes many good GMing practices that many people out there were already doing without a defined name.

It is a fully trad game with a GMing advice oriented to get certain levels of player input. The supplements are really good, specially the Sword & Sorcerer one, which I found a must if you like the S&S genre.

It is considered a non-trad game because stupid Internet vendettas with no relation whatsoever with reality.
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"Sorceror": What's the big deal?
« Reply #14 on: December 27, 2012, 03:14:51 PM »
Quote from: Imperator;611980
I have played it many times, and it's a good fun game, excellent for one-shots and short campaigns. It is flexible, and it formalizes many good GMing practices that many people out there were already doing without a defined name.

It is a fully trad game with a GMing advice oriented to get certain levels of player input. The supplements are really good, specially the Sword & Sorcerer one, which I found a must if you like the S&S genre.

It is considered a non-trad game because stupid Internet vendettas with no relation whatsoever with reality.


I will second, or third at this point, the notion that Sorcerer and Sword is a fantastic general guide to the genre, and the best supplement for the game out there.