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Messages - HappyDaze

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1
I think one of the mistakes of the Ravenloft setting as a whole was trying to make it have a "continent" with fixed borders. If you're in a weird demiplane, then it would be far more practical to have each realm be in its own space, and travelling through the mists would not reliably take you from one nation to the next. It would then have been random or up to the GM where the PCs moved/fled to.
IIRC,  they used that in 2e to explain why the domain borders were left open. Even undead dread lords felt the need to have trade between their domain and others. Oh, and the trade allowed for spies (byond the Vistani) so they could each keep track of what the others learned about escaping the demiplane. It never really felt fitting to the mood of the setting to me.

2
Imagine saying something so mind-blowingly stupid then backtracking and pretending it's a nuanced position...typical gaslighting communist rhetoric.
It's also the SOP of Fox News.

3
On the contrary I think you will find that most doctors would appreciate being able to discuss the various pros and cons of potential treatments with their patients which is necessary if you want to have informed consent.
I think that what you think does not match my professional experiences of working with doctors, with the biggest limiter being the doctors' available time per patient.

So Doctors dont want to spend the time to discuss a patients treatment with the patient because that would waste their time that they could spend in not discussing a different patients treatment?

It has a certain logic.
There's a balance they have to make between quality of care and quantity of care. Devoting too much time to one patient's care can sometimes be a disservice to others (and invites claims of discrimination in some cases). This is why face to face time with the doctor is often limited to only 10 minutes for many appointments.

So in that case there is no way that one of your doctors is going to make any real kind of diagnosis and or recommendation in a single 10 minute consulation.  They will send the patient for various lab tests or scans or xrays or what have you and rack up at least two or three consulations so that they can really milk that patient for as much as they can.

Because they cant be accused of discrimination if they send you for many expensive tests, can they?
That's generally true, and it's also why most doctors will only see you after other medical professionals (typically nurses) have already collected,  filtered, and concentrated your subjective input into a format that allows the doctor to optimize their time with you. This will then go with labs, imaging, and other objective pieces (that may be precollected in some cases, particularly for existing patients or in integrated care networks). So, if you're a first time patient of a doctor, you most likely will not get a comprehensive diagnosis of a complex issue in a single visit.

As for ordering lots of expensive tests, that's not how they make money anymore.

4
On the contrary I think you will find that most doctors would appreciate being able to discuss the various pros and cons of potential treatments with their patients which is necessary if you want to have informed consent.
I think that what you think does not match my professional experiences of working with doctors, with the biggest limiter being the doctors' available time per patient.

So Doctors dont want to spend the time to discuss a patients treatment with the patient because that would waste their time that they could spend in not discussing a different patients treatment?

It has a certain logic.
There's a balance they have to make between quality of care and quantity of care. Devoting too much time to one patient's care can sometimes be a disservice to others (and invites claims of discrimination in some cases). This is why face to face time with the doctor is often limited to only 10 minutes for many appointments.

5
On the contrary I think you will find that most doctors would appreciate being able to discuss the various pros and cons of potential treatments with their patients which is necessary if you want to have informed consent.
I think that what you think does not match my professional experiences of working with doctors, with the biggest limiter being the doctors' available time per patient.

6
I'm not a fan of dragons casting spells like people do. I am a fan of dragons having thematically linked innate powers that express the nature of a particular dragon (or type of dragon in settings where dragons are more common). This way a "fire dragon" or a "river dragon" each have a narrow range of powers that will surpass those of spellcasters in power, but not in overall utility/scope/flexibility.

As for intelligence, I don't mind bestial dragons more on par with Godzilla (an "atomic sea dragon") than what is commonly seen in D&D.

7
I philosophically believe that even if an organism of some sort, body-hopping sentience is not human.
But is it transhuman? That's the real question.

8
To Ratman - sorry, that wasn't meant to imply you. I was talking about people I know in real life pre-covid.

I think we're agreed here that listening to one's own doctor who knows you and treats you for health advice is a good idea.

As a pretty milquetoast and generalized statement, yeah.

Fair enough. How do we differ on specifics? Do you think listening to one's doctor is a good idea for whether to get a given vaccine? Is the answer different for covid compared to other vaccines?

Yes and yes.

The science and data for known vaccines for known diseases have been around for decades if not hundreds of years. If a family doctor, general practicioner type says to get a known vaccine, that's probably good, informed advice.

The Covid-19 mRNA vaccine was literally created last year, and only has emergency FDA approval in the face of the pandemic. You can't seek legal recourse for any unintended side effects of the mRNA vaccines.

https://www.cnbc.com/2020/12/16/covid-vaccine-side-effects-compensation-lawsuit.html

That in itself might give someone pause. But governments are pushing these vaccinations on everyone, worldwide. I don't expect a general practicioner, family doctor type to have an informed opinion on experimental vaccines and their unforseen consequences. Just the government line that everybody need to get vaccinated.

Canuckistan is actually looking to start removing licenses from doctors who don't toe the line:

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/bc-doctors-misinformation-covid-19-1.6021489

Don't say what they tell you to say and you lose your livelihood that you worked so hard for.  Doctors are a whole lot less courageous than small business owners so most will roll over.  Big Pharma's been through this song and dance plenty of times they've honed themselves in to apex predators.
That's an interesting take on the article. It really shows how your thinking is twisted.

9
I've been meaning to dig it out and try it again, but I can't find my rule book. :/
Friend of mine downloads rulebooks for his old boardgames from (I think) BGG all the time. You might want to check there, and ask a bit if you don't find it right away.

10
I think that resleeving is one of the key aspects of the setting, and while it does blow up a lot of the key assumptions that most people need to tell stories or run games, that's what makes Eclipse Phase compelling.

One thing I'd like to consider would be to make bioconservatism an ideal.  Lean hard into all of the various problems that people have brought up with artificial bodies and synthetic spaces.  Make it clear that once you start going down the pleasure-pod-and-synthetic-drug route, you're on a very short, very slippery slope to just directly dumping synthetic neurohormones into your brain, to wireheading, to editing yourself so that you feel nothing but pleasure.

As I suggested before, hack out the Alien Space Bats and their bullshit magic virus entirely, but keep the idea of the Exsurgent mass as an area of maximal Darwinian competition, stripped of all humanity and human values other than raw survival.  Tie the sanity system to humanity and human values.  Make the idea to sleeve into a purely organic, unaugmented meat body an actual consideration, that makes you impossible to hack, and gives you a huge boost to your mental stability, and locks you off from a bunch of self-destructive paths, so that the choice to go full-chrome is inherently a trade-off.

You'd want the rules to emphasize that humanity is special, worth preserving, and fragile.  Make it inherent that humanity can't leave its roots too far beyond without making that jump from trans- to post-.  Like, one idea off the top of my head is that digital sapiences have lifespans, as the existential horror of knowing that an unknown number of copies of you, or programs-that-used-to-be-you-before-being-ruthlessly-hacked, are floating around out there, and make people need to wipe their back-ups and spend time in a baseline human body to recenter themselves periodically before they can go back into the chrome, would also help things.

That way, we can keep the horror of the transhuman optimization curve, while not having it completely obliterate the setting the minute anyone tries it.
I agree that sleeving is a key element of the setting, and removing it would eliminate a lot of what makes EP compelling. But I think making bioconservatism the ideal has the same problem, because becoming posthuman is also a key element.

The best approach might be to view posthumanity as a bridge across the abyss -- the goal is to become something new, something spectacular. But the bridge to that new world is a narrow one. Humans have a lot of problems adapting to the new technology, but it's possible. Bioconservatism becomes the safe route with fewer options, while posthumanity becomes the more dangerous route with more options.

Successfully implementing that in a game, of course, is the real trick.
I always thought that EP tried to show that ideal transhumanism was somewhere between bioconservatives and exhumans. And yes, it has always been in the implementation that they've fucked it up.

11
Of course, it helps that the characters start competent. They don't actually need to advance their skills to do cool shit.
This is key in a game with no/minimal advancement. In Star Trek Adventures (Modiphius 2d20), mechanical character growth is minimal, with your character more likely to shift a few points or traits around rather than pick up a net gain in total power. However, as they start as well-rounded, hyper-competent Starfleet Officers, this isn't really a problem. If it is, there are some alternate rules in (IIRC) the Klingon book that can change this up some.

12
What feels right for a Level 1 Character, vs a Level 2 Character; or a Level 5 Character?

Do we really need Level progression in RPGs?

A buddy of mine who plays in a Soulbound RPG game (which I'm not in unfortunately) doesn't like advancement in it as much due to lack of levels.  He feels he can't properly gauge how much his character is progressing or if he's on the correct track.
Well, for one thing, a game like that doesn't have a "correct track" of advancement. Instead, it has many possible paths of advancement and they can intertwine in various ways. For players that want their characters to grow as the play directs rather than along a preset character build, it allows a lot of freedom. However, it isn't so great for optimizers as it makes it very hard to determine if something is objectively optimal. However, I can't agree that Soulbound progression is hard to gauge. If your numbers are getting bigger, you're getting better.

13
I think there’s a massive difference between some old Egyptian dude being amazed at modern technology and being incapable of using or understanding it. At least using it for sure. Just like I’m sure I could give some Roman soldiers AK-47s and they’d be hitting bullseyes within the week. Humans are highly adaptable.
And in the Battlfield Earth film, cavemen can operate Harriers.

14
I wonder how it would play out if you inverted the wizard trope so that they need to wear heavy armor to safely use spells. If you like, say that the armor keeps the magical energies from grounding through their bodies. Casting in Medium armor leaves a some risk, Light armor a bigger risk, and casting unarmored is sure to hurt. Now you probably end up with Wizards dumping Dex and taking Str instead (possibly as #2 stat, or as #3 after Con).


15
A limited form of the Singularity effect is where the tv tropes concept of “Zee Rust” comes from. The Sci-Fi tech on shows of the past often looks extremely dated in some ways compared to today.

The prime examples being Star Trek’s communicators. At the time a communication device you could hold in the palm of your hand seemed wildly futuristic for the 23rd Century. But I’m typing this from my phone that can also play video, video chat in real time, run all manner of programs, connect to my bank, make purchases, is my watch, camera and flashlight, includes motion and light sensors that let it adjust its brightness, orient the screen and count how many steps I’ve taken today.

In the 1960’s they couldn’t even conceive of what modern electronics would be like; that our information/computer technology would have raced past our space travel technology and yet that true AI (as they would have defined it vs. the machine learning we call AI) appears no closer today than it was half-a-century ago or that we haven’t managed any significant improvements in energy storage density or high energy ppwer generation in decades.

We’re all still waiting for our flying cars.
At least the Star Trek vocal computer controls still beat Alexa...for now.

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