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Messages - Maarzan

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News and Adverts / Fudging good, bad, or what?
« on: April 16, 2017, 05:01:49 AM »
If you are so sure that it makes everything better for all participiants do it in the open and be prepared to fold to a veto.
Everything else is just cheating.

Pen and Paper Roleplaying Games (RPGs) Discussion / Realistic Rules
« on: March 27, 2017, 07:25:01 AM »
The treatment of "realims" looks to me like the whining of someone who doesn´t get his hyperpowered archmage-ultimate swordmaster-ninja pointing out that true balancing of game characters is not possible anyway and what people want to get is heroic stories - with Mary-Sue-fiction his only reference available ... .
Sure you can overdo ist and reduce playablility too much for even the most enthusiastic "autist", you can get it plainly wrong, you can choose the wrong focus to finely modell for the game you said you want to make, but lastly there is also a broad field where you just can make it better than what is available (or at least try it) and thus improve the "fun" for those that have the fitting taste to appeciate this efforts.

As seen here it seems to me to be just a rant of someone that again fears that a game style fitting to a different taste is leaving him alone without players for what he likes.

Quote from: Voros;949139
Would German fascism have built a sustainable society? What alignment were the Aztecs?

It didn´t intend to be an all evil society. That is why they declared a lot of people as subhumans to get exploited or killed and robbed and started to prey on neighbor countries. To be evil you need victims.
They also didn´t instruct the common people to be "evil" but to be quiet, obedient and diligent people, not like the picture painted from the abys with rampaging evil all around.

I think the problem is combining roleplaying aligment with christian views of hell.
Of course this will not work out.

Even if evil gods are lying it will not work out when people can talk back to their dead.
So I assume that in evil afterlife you get to prey on and torture the group of infidels and of the good ones if you think you can get away with it.
They have to give the evil mortals a halfway decent chance to make it pay out to keep this business running.

Lastely it is similar how it works on earth. You don´t run an evil society with all people being evil and fighting completely among yourself. You point the aggression on other people and try to siphon as much as you can into your own purse as you can get along with without loosing the support of the evil masses. Evil alone as a self styled predator doesn´t really produce, so you can´t seriously exploit them.

Pen and Paper Roleplaying Games (RPGs) Discussion / Realistic Rules
« on: March 01, 2017, 11:12:00 AM »
Quote from: Gronan of Simmerya;948098
The notion that abstraction removes interesting decisions is nonsense. The CHAINMAIL 1:20 combat system is highly abstract, satisfactorily realistic, and an excellent medieval wargame. The OD&D combat system is quite abstract, and the game spread like wildfire.  You're pushing a false dichotomy.

Yeah, and because everyone was/is completely satisfied, there were no other games spreading like wildfire shortly afterwards ... .

Quote from: Tristram Evans;948177
OR, it could be that a system is glossing over negligible and minor effects and concentrating purely on the major choices that ultimately have the most consequences, so every decision in the game is important, instead of bogging down play with irrelevancies.

It could be. And if it is, nobody is complaining, because it never gets relevant.
But it looks different, when someone is starting to say "no, this can´t get considered ". You have to draw a line somewhere and if you have a focus for your game it can even help to emphazise it.
But if you are missing elements relatively near to the surface inside your focus you will get complains - sometimes expressed incorrectly as unrealistic when it is instead just below the abstraction radar.

Pen and Paper Roleplaying Games (RPGs) Discussion / Realistic Rules
« on: February 27, 2017, 11:58:27 PM »
What abstraction does is leaving out details - and where there are no details there is no chance that these details could be wrong. And it is these details that allow to make decissions about them and thus playing the game.
On the other hand this is necessary to get a decission in time and no problem if there are enough elements to interact left. But highlyabstract games tend to level over areas where you would like to make relevant decissions.

It is similar to getting more megapixels on your digital camera. You will get more details but you will also see more faults in the pictures. But to few pixles to start with and depending on the way you want to use the picture you are missing details or optical quality you would like to have.

Pen and Paper Roleplaying Games (RPGs) Discussion / Realistic Rules
« on: February 19, 2017, 07:18:27 AM »
Quote from: Cruxador;946391
Realism is a funny thing. Not all of reality is desirable, after all. Like, combat realism? Few games even try that. Song of Swords kind of does, and to be fair it's pretty awesome, but even then a lot of people play without the sepsis rules, because winning a fight and then dying afterward is fun only for a very specific mindset.

And realism in magic means no magic at all. I think it's more important to have magic that has logical rules to it, and is relatively limited in scope. Even in very supernatural worlds, it's better if supernatural elements aren't just "it's magic so it works". And, this isn't a mechanics thing but a setting thing, but it's a good idea to figure out what the ramifications of that would be.

I don´t see this as a problem that people interested in realism usually have, unlesss they are striving for a certain theme.
The point is:
1) to explicitly state the deviations you do and how they work, so that everyone can consider/work with it .
2) consider these deviations with the rest of your system/setting, so that what builds on the deviation keeps it inner logic and thus gameablility.

And magic is just a very prominent case of this.

Pen and Paper Roleplaying Games (RPGs) Discussion / Realistic Rules
« on: February 17, 2017, 11:49:43 AM »
Quote from: estar;946167
... But the designers successfully juggled things that you can ignore the complexity if you want. That not true of Rolemaster. .

Where do you get that from? The core is almost trivial and the rest are ton of optional rules (Ok, the presentation of the basics is decidedly substandard).
They even had numbers and check-lists in the books to organize what rules are active.

Pen and Paper Roleplaying Games (RPGs) Discussion / Realistic Rules
« on: February 16, 2017, 01:42:56 AM »
Quote from: Voros;945856
What many of you are describing is only one approach to fantasy and horror. Are myths, fairy tales or medieval romances 'realistic'? Trying to shoehorn them into 19th century models of the European novel is popular but may lose much of what makes them powerful. Even the 'realism' of sf is only a veneer. Just look at the prevalence of FTL travel in supposed 'hard sf' until writers like Benford started writing.

Those who insist on 'realism' are often arbitrarily selective about the enforcement of this supposed 'realism' and much of it is about applying the rationalizations of sf to a fantasy or horror setting. That can be a fun approach but can also drain all the mystery and dread out of the genres.

The OCD obsession with supposed 'realism' in RPGs already led us down the path to absurdly convoluted systems that collapse under their own weight and can often be exploited to the most unrealistic ends due to their hopeless attempt map reality. Most of those fantasy heartbreakers were attempts to give us a more 'realistic' D&D.

If you want a novel, write a novel.
But in a game players have to make decissions and these need some reliable base to be dereived from and everything that is not set in the game itself  (unless there is canon third side setting info, which probably has to be declared inteh game book too) has to be compared with our real world, because this is all the player has for reference.  

So even "unrealistic" add ons are not a problem.
But they have to
1) be expressivly anounced and described
2) follow internal logic and in regard to their effects and influence on the gameworld.
3) or fields where there happen to be problems explicitly been declared as "not focus of this game".

On the other hand noone is forced to play a game that tries for a higher level of realism but even trying to talk about it gets a lot of flak from all sides.
My impression is, that some have a problem with (living in) reality and don´t like to be bothered in their dreamy refugium or probably getting ousted, because they can´t meet the demands to participiate anymore (like doing some math) or gets in their way of enjoying virtual wish fullfilment.

Pen and Paper Roleplaying Games (RPGs) Discussion / Realistic Rules
« on: February 14, 2017, 12:41:47 PM »
The core of the game is to make decissions on behalf of your character. To do this you have to have an idea regarding how things work in the game world.
In many cases you will want do deviate intentionally from the real world or you will add things that aren´t even existing in the real world.
And basically it is only important that there are rules that everyone knows - no matter how unrealistically they are, as long as they are generally known.

But there are 2 problems:
1) Once you set a rule, it starts to interact with the other rules and will influence the world as gaming happens. And if you don´t think about the inner logic of your rules, you will get unintended results or even contradictions - at least regarding to the world and events you originaly envisioned but also those leading to discussions about what is now the "truth" to build the character decissions on. So keeping inner logic is a basic need for serious gaming.

2) Even when there are rules that lead to certain results people will very often assume that things that are not defined as working differnet in world will behave like the identical thing in our world (or what they assume how it behaves). So you will get exspectaion clashes. You will get them anyway, because not everyone is an expert regarding what he assumes here. But it will lead to less shit piling on your work when you can point to some real info about it. (and perhaps these clashes get less then too)

And for some styles "getting it right" is one primal element of "fun". So the task there is to get as accurate as possible while still staying gameable for its own sake.

In most cases there will be not the one and aggreed on truth -like in real world science. But there will be different amounts of obvious deviations from known data or at least attempts to logically construct those differnece based on what we know or what we assume to know.

Die Asche wäre doch immer noch Dünger, leichter und keimfreier.

Some classmates had just reached name level (or rather their characters), they had a budget and they wanted a big castle, but they didn´t really made progress.
So I took the role of the architect and designed them one by the rules excerpt they gave me. Instead of just daydreaming around it was a real revelation to now have numbers under your design and other people to test (and appreciate) your creations. Some times later I was invited to a birthday party with "the real stuff" and since then I was hooked.

Quote from: ChristopherKubasik;940242
There's a lot crammed into that post, but I'll say two things:

1. Old School requires someone take the reigns and organizes it. That's a given, not an odd exception.

Ok, as this seems to be taken as standard, I stand corrected and had the wrong idea regarding "Old school".

But if the fitting GM is a so big part of the parcel, it will be hard to recreate for a newbie from a rules system alone.

OK, perhaps I have the wrong (i.e. too limited ) picture of OSR gaming.

In front of my remembering eye there is the wonder of opening a box full of wonder, monsters, magic and alien lands and everything got put together wildly in a rather disorganized gonzo mix in the attempt to swallow it as fast and as much as possible and characters sometimes got numbered because they died so fast or someone tried to try something different. It was a blast and it was pure chaos.

What you describe there sounds much more like the tries to organize and improve it after the first enthusiasm calmed down a little bit and people were starting to find rough edges, started to ask questions and then either someone took up the reigns and told how things are going to work now or someone else tried to to formulate rules to bring a little bit more order to the table for everyone. With the problem that styles started to devide from each other and you can´t box the big guy ... .

Quote from: ChristopherKubasik;940193
Yes. But I believe (but maybe I'm misreading you?) you are focusing on potential problems rather than celebrating the potential for terrific play found when the rules are not there to constrain potential problems but offer freedom for creativity on the fly.

In other words -- I think -- we've got a split between "features" and "bugs" -- with my feet firmly planted on the "features" side of having a loose collection of guidelines for play.

I don´t think you are misreading me.
With the right people you can have a lot fun playing rather free form.
But in my experience this option comes from a long time adapting and getting to know each other in a certain similar minded group in a lot of other, more rigidly rule goverend games. So you are rather not playing free, but the sum of collected and shared experiences of the past.

And you can´t put this common history in a box, so I am quite sceptical you really can recreate a longer lasting "positive Old School feel"m especially  without also adding some more framework, at least if you are not feeding it to a complete star eyed newbie, but someone who can compare and will find the bugs much faster than the fresh starters in the past.  

So it looks a lot like Christmas in my opinion: If you want to see the spirit and wonder of Christmas again, you will have to search for its reflection in the eyes of children. You will not find it again alone.

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