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Author Topic: Who wants to interview me about Lords of Olympus?  (Read 46844 times)

Lorrraine

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Who wants to interview me about Lords of Olympus?
« Reply #15 on: July 03, 2010, 04:47:21 AM »
Hi RPGPundit,

Aside from the obvious (ADRPG and Greek myth) what sources of inspiration have you used in designing Lords of Olympus?

How do you plan to handle experience in Lords of Olympus?

How do Ego, Might, Fortitude, and Prowess differ from Amber's Psyche, Strength, Endurance, and Warfare?

Do you know yet how much Lords of Olympus will cost for a digital or printed copy?

What plans do you have to playtest Lords of Olympus?

Thanks,
Lorrraine

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Who wants to interview me about Lords of Olympus?
« Reply #16 on: July 09, 2010, 12:59:40 PM »
Lords of Olympus Q&A Part V

As has been the case for the last several Fridays, I answer any and all questions posed on this RPGsite thread, regarding my upcoming Lords of Olympus game.

If YOU have a question for me about the RPG, please post your question on that thread, and I guarantee that come Friday, you'll get something vaguely resembling an answer.

So, without further ado...

Q: Aside from the obvious (ADRPG and Greek myth) what sources of inspiration have you used in designing Lords of Olympus?

A: Well, its tough to say.  Certainly, in the first place I'd say that one inspiration was about 20 years worth of Diceless RPG campaigns.  I think that has to count as much for setting inspiration as for system inspiration, because it was all about giving me ideas about how to frame this kind of work.  Another influence of sorts is popular culture about the Greek myths and legends; but moreso in a negative sense. I wanted to create some twists regarding how people regularly look at the Greek gods, and some portrays of them that I felt were off the mark.
In particular, people expecting Eris to be a well-intentioned "trickster" because of the whole "Discordian" movement/religion/fashion will be rather surprised to see that I restore her to her proper place as a horrific being that causes destruction and pain. Those expecting Morpheus to be the hipster from Neil Gaiman's Sandman comics will be somewhat surprised too, though I play up on that reference in my description of Morpheus. And Heracles is not going to be a lovable oafish doofus like we've seen in many recent interpretations.


Q: How do you plan to handle experience in Lords of Olympus?

A: There will be Advancement, which is where you get points to spend that you use to buy stuff. That's the basic framework. Beyond that, there'll be a small horde of options for how to handle advancement, including the use of Wish Lists, and guidelines for the different things you could choose to award advancement for, and how that affects the game.
Maybe the most interesting option in there will be the plan for the Advancement Wish List, where players can (under GM supervision) decide which Goals really matter to them and the GM assigns advancement points based on accomplishing these goals.  It was something that got worked out with Alejo, and he probably got inspiration for it from Aces & Eights' wonderful system.


Q: How do Ego, Might, Fortitude, and Prowess differ from Psyche, Strength, Endurance, and Warfare?

A: Ego governs the use of psychic powers as well as willpower. There are very particular guidelines in the game for most of the magical Powers as well, where one's Ego Class is the main factor for how well you can perform a magical spell/power-use.
Might is the attribute that governs anything to do with lifting, pushing, breaking objects, or the application of brute force. It also determines how effective the PC's physical damage is, and the degree of damage that can be dealt with a physical attack. These things are quantified in the combat section. http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=utf-8"> name="ProgId" content="Word.Document"> name="Generator" content="Microsoft Word 11"> name="Originator" content="Microsoft Word 11">
Fortitude is one's damage resistance, constitution, and regenerative capabilities. It governs how much damage one can take before going down, how long one can keep going before collapsing exhausted, and how quickly one recovers. Beyond that, its also very important for the magical Powers; just like Ego determines how well you can use most powers, Fortitude determines how long you can use most powers for.
Prowess represents one's dexterity and skill at arms, as well as strategic thinking. Its used for any situation involving armed combat, leading troops in battle, and even playing games of strategy.  Piloting a vehicle, riding an animal, or organizing the logistics of an operation all base themselves on Prowess.


Q: Do you know yet how much Lords of Olympus will cost for a digital or printed copy?

A: I do not, not yet. Brett Bernstein would have to answer that question, and I'd figure he doesn't know yet, since I haven't finished the full text or sent him the final draft as of yet for him to organize into an actual product.  I suppose you could check out the prices Precis Intermedia has for many of its other fine products, and that might give you a ballpark guess.


Q: What plans do you have to playtest Lords of Olympus?


A: In a way, a lot of Lords of Olympus has already been playtested over the course of 20 years. Many of the innovations to how powers work, or the combat system of the game are based on my personal house rulings in other RPGs that have proven effective over time.
But aside from that I have a small team of loyal "phase 1" playtesters with me, who are many of the same people who assisted me on previous games. Their task right now is to look through the rules with a fine-toothed comb (since, as I already stated, mechanics-writing is not my strong suit) and try to recommend changes. A few changes have already been instituted, but on the whole there's been far less critical problems with this book than my previous ones, the impressions thus far (and remember, we're basically done the whole "mechanics" side of things) have been great.  But like I said, that's no surprise, because this is the product of two decades of preparation.

Keep those questions coming, folks!

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Lorrraine

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« Reply #17 on: July 10, 2010, 12:07:42 PM »
Hi RPGPundit,

How does Lords of Olympus compare to your previous games, Forward... to Adventure and Gnomemurdered?

Does Hera kick ass?

How does World Walking differ from Promethean World Walking and from Pattern in the ADRPG?

Do any NPCs in Lords of Olympus have powers other than the ones listed as available for PCs?

Does Metamorphosis, at the non advanced level, deal with transforming the power user, transforming others, or both?

Thanks,
Lorrraine

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« Reply #18 on: July 10, 2010, 05:29:27 PM »
Greek mythology is full of superhuman monsters, from cyclops able to hurl boulders to the hydra.

Worse, there are the titans.

And yet, gods and demi-gods sometimes went toe-to-toe with these beings.

So, does one have to assume that the PCs will be able to have litterally superhuman strength? Or will they be more amber-like in strength, and have to rely on other means to win?

And what of powerful artifacts and weapons, like Zeus's lighting, Appollo's arrows, Aphrodite's belt (that made people fall in love with her), Hades helmet (that made its wearer invisible) or hermes sandals? Will these gods have these items? Will PCs be able to have similar artifacts?

While we're at it, what of Hephaistos and his forge abilities?
 

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« Reply #19 on: July 12, 2010, 06:46:48 AM »
Quote from: Croaker;393017
Greek mythology is full of superhuman monsters, from cyclops able to hurl boulders to the hydra.

Worse, there are the titans.

And yet, gods and demi-gods sometimes went toe-to-toe with these beings.

So, does one have to assume that the PCs will be able to have litterally superhuman strength? Or will they be more amber-like in strength, and have to rely on other means to win?

And what of powerful artifacts and weapons, like Zeus's lighting, Appollo's arrows, Aphrodite's belt (that made people fall in love with her), Hades helmet (that made its wearer invisible) or hermes sandals? Will these gods have these items? Will PCs be able to have similar artifacts?

While we're at it, what of Hephaistos and his forge abilities?

I love coincidences...
Right now, my PC are travelling in a greek-like shadow called Anevernum, in the effort to learn about their pasts, and to become what they really are...
Some big villain (Finndo) is preparing revenge manipulating them, forgotten offspring of elder amberites... bearing deadly presents for Amber, when they will come back there... Timeo Danaos et dona ferentis...
Well, they went to Delphi, to talk with the Oracle, and bribeing to be admitted, met and defeat the Hydra, the Sphinx, the Lion of Nemea, the Minotaur, the Lamia, met Apollo, Pan (o so they believe), fight with Argos against the Spartans, sail across the mediterranean with an empowered ship at the speed of 20 knots, eating and drinking with the centaurs, learning magic from the satyrs, and so on... What a fun!
"All my demons cast a spell
The souls of dusk rising from the ashes
So the book of shadows tell
The weak will always obey the master"

Kamelot, The Spell
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http://evermasterx.altervista.org/blog/tag/lords-of-olympus/

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Who wants to interview me about Lords of Olympus?
« Reply #20 on: July 16, 2010, 06:13:51 PM »
Lords of Olympus Q&A Pt. VI

Here are some more questions and answers regarding my upcoming Lords of Olympus RPG.  Remember, if you want to ask a question about the game, post it to this thread, and it will be answered every Friday!

Here we go:

Q:How does Lords of Olympus compare to your previous games, Forward... to Adventure and Gnomemurdered?

A: I don't know if here you meant how it compares as a writing project, as a system, or as a game; so I'll try to answer all three: as a writing project, Lords of Olympus is the biggest RPG I've ever tried to write. Its much more work than either of my two previous games, though perhaps less difficult to write than FtA! because its not my first time trying to design a game, and the system is easier for me.
Speaking of that, as a system, Lords of Olympus is more rules-lite than FtA!, less rules-lite than Gnomemurdered. It has rules that are fairly complete but more straightforward than the heavier crunchier mechanics of FtA.
As a game, they're all EXTREMELY different games (the "Nine Princes in Aembar" scenario in Gnomemurdered notwithstanding); I don't think a lot of game designers go the distance of so much disparity in their style as I have with these three games.  I suspect that if people liked the SYSTEM of FtA! or of Gnomemurdered, they won't necessarily be any more drawn to Lords of Olympus than anyone else; on the other hand, if what they liked was the setting and style of those two games, then they'll like Lords of Olympus as well.


Q: Does Hera kick ass?

A: Short answer; yes. Long answer: it depends what you mean by "kick ass".  Hera in my setting is not the kind of character that will come up to you kick the living crap out of you physically (that would be Heracles), or that will stab you through the throat before you can finish even thinking of going for your blade (that'd be Athena), or that will bring down the fury of raw divine power on you until there's nothing left of you but ash (that'd be Zeus). Hera kicks ass in the sense that she's possibly the most deviously scheming Olympian of them all, and she will learn all of your secrets, use them against you, and twist you to her service or destroy your life piece by piece until you beg for death. She is the Queen of the Gods, and my inspiration for her would be Livia, the Roman Empress, who most definitely "kicked ass" in my book. A powerful PC might be able to beat her up, but she is definitely the most powerful woman in the multiverse, and will wreck you if you get in her way.


Q: How does World Walking differ from Promethean World Walking?

A: World-Walking is the power, granted by the Gods, of being able to travel across one, two, or all three of the Divine Roads (the Olympian Road, the Atlantean Road or the Hadean Road). These are paths that twist and wind their way from Olympus, Atlantis, or the Underworld and span all across the multiverse.  Characters with World-walking must find a place where the universe they are currently in connects to the Divine Road they wish to travel, though real masters of World Walking can also create those points of entry (and it must have certain geographical features, different for each road, for the entry to be found or created).
The "Promethean World Walking" power is a bit different.  There, you are accessing one of the Divine Roads, but not by the boon of the Gods; you are doing so because you have discovered secret and forbidden magics that let you break into the roads like a sneak-thief in the night: It requires a great deal of work, rituals that take time to open a gateway, and shew-stones that will let you find those gateways in the first place, and perception-altering substances to let you cross through; and when you enter the road everything is much harder than if you were actually supposed to be there as if the road and those creatures that may be found on it KNOW you don't belong there. But it allows one who lacks the boon of any of the three principle gods to even so travel across the multiverse.


Q: Do any NPCs in Lords of Olympus have powers other than the ones listed as available for PCs?

A: Well, yes. For starters, there's the Primordials. They're True Immortals, they can't ever actually die. And besides that, they have incredible levels of power in general, able to do things that are off the scale of a PC. They can become not just entire vast objects (rivers or mountains or the sky or the earth or the night or freaking sleep) but they can become ALL of these objects, everywhere, in the entire multiverse. And they can do this while also taking human forms, in multiple places at once. And they can transport those bodies across the multiverse, without using the Roads or other methods normal deities do.
Of course, the Primordials are a whole other level from the normal gods;  but even among the Titans and the Olympians, yes there are a few of them that have certain powers that are beyond what PCs have (For example, Nereus has a level of Advanced Metamorphosis which could be called "exalted Metamorphosis").


Q: Does Metamorphosis, at the non advanced level, deal with transforming the power user, transforming others, or both?

A: At the non-advanced level, Metamorphosis has to do with transforming the user.


Q: Greek mythology is full of superhuman monsters, from cyclops able to hurl boulders to the hydra.
Worse, there are the titans.
And yet, gods and demi-gods sometimes went toe-to-toe with these beings.
So, does one have to assume that the PCs will be able to have litterally superhuman strength? Or will they be more limited in strength, and have to rely on other means to win?


A: First, we need to differentiate some monsters from other. There are some monsters that have Divine Blood. Other monsters, however, do not, they are either weak multiversal copies or their divine blood has been diluted through milennia of distance from the divine monster that spawned their ancestors.  So for example, in the Lords of Olympus game, there is a big difference from the statistical power of one of the three original Cyclopes (the children of Gaea and Uranus), or one of the thousands or millions or billions of common Cyclops you can find in some world or Realm.  The former are much more powerful.
There are also three classes of deities in the game: Primordials, Olympians and Titans. The Primordials are of a power level that goes beyond anything the PCs are supposed to handle, they are almost mythos-like entities; the oldest of which have nothing even resembling human intellect or personality, the latter "generations" of Primordials having more and more humanlike facades (but that's really all they are, scratch the surface and you realize that the "Personality" of a Primordial like Hypnos, or even Gaea, is completely unidimensional and insane).
The Titans and Olympians both basically have the same range of power-levels; an old or mighty Titan will be similar in strength to an old or mighty Olympian; a younger or weaker Titan will not be better than a young weak Olympian.
In the game, abilities are quantified by "Classes"; the lowest class is Mortal Class. At this level of Might (the ability that governs "strength"), to answer your question, you would be of the same strength as a regular average human being. Everything from a child to a guy who works out often would fit under the "Mortal Class Might" category.
Then you have  Heroic Class. Heroic Class is the level of those great mortal heroes, the most amazing humans, the absolute border of human capability, as well as those mortals who were given a little extra by the gods, or those gods who are very notably weak for some reason.  Heroic Class Might is capable of dealing mighty blows, able to kill a regular mortal with a single good punch if it strikes true. He is able to lift and hold up one end of a car, and throw objects http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=utf-8"> name="ProgId" content="Word.Document"> name="Generator" content="Microsoft Word 11"> name="Originator" content="Microsoft Word 11">of considerable weight for considerable distances.
The next class up is Olympian Class. This is the class level for a typical deity (Titan OR Olympian, despite the name of the class), and represents a level beyond what any mortal without divine blood could possibly achieve. Someone with Olympian class Might can lift up a car with his bare hands and throw it a few feet. He could uproot a thick tree without mechanical assistance. He could punch right through any type of normal wood, and with enough effort could punch his way through weaker kinds of stone or metal.  He can easily kill a mortal with a single blow of his fists. And it would require four or five mortal men to pin him down, with great effort.
A PC spending zero points would begin the game with Olympian Class Might.  Beyond that are the Numbered Class ability levels.  Characters with numbered Classes in Might (ie. that have put points during the bidding war, or later on, into the Might attribute) will be capable of even more impressive feats of strength.  And older gods will have abilities rated at different classes above 1st Class. Some of the mightiest gods, like Atlas or Heracles, will be able to do things with their strength that is beyond mortal understanding, like holding up the sky itself.

Q: And what of powerful artifacts and weapons, like Zeus's lighting, Appollo's arrows, Aphrodite's belt (that made people fall in love with her), Hades helmet (that made its wearer invisible) or hermes sandals? Will these gods have these items? Will PCs be able to have similar artifacts? While we're at it, what of Hephaistos and his forge abilities?

A: Yes, the gods will have these items. PCs can have similar objects, though usually not at the same level of power as Zeus' Thunderbolt; unless the GM really wants them to. There are two distinct types of magic items in the game: "Daemonic Items" (magical items that have had a daemon, a disembodied spirit, trapped within them), or Olympian Artefacts (objects that have been created through powerful Olympian magic of the sort Hephaestus uses at his forge).

That's it for this week. Make sure to keep those questions coming, and you'll get answers about this developing game every Friday!

RPGPundit
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Lorrraine

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« Reply #21 on: July 16, 2010, 11:25:05 PM »
Hi RPGPundit,

Will Lords of Olympus have an index?

What can you tell us about the art for Lords of Olympus?

Given that Lords of Olympus includes Hades and the Underworld, does it include rules for continuing to adventure after death?

How much information will Lords of Olympus have on various important Realms such as Atlantis, Olympus, and the Underworld?

What music would work well as a soundtrack for a Lords of Olympus game?

Thanks,
Lorrraine

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« Reply #22 on: July 16, 2010, 11:58:14 PM »
Can you give us a detailed blow by blow example of the system in Physical Combat and in Social Conflict?  I have never been in a good diceless game, but plenty of good LARPS.  I am interested in seeing what happens in LoO.

Lorrraine

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« Reply #23 on: July 19, 2010, 04:03:33 PM »
Hi RPGPundit,

Quote from: SteveRubio


Should we assume that at the very start of the game, Hera Knows. And if we have to ask if she Knows, then she already Knows and we don't want her to Know? Especially if the PC in question is the offspring of Zeus on one of his JFK-like extramarital shenanigans?

How will things be rated once you go "above first class"? Obviously Atlas and Herakles are above 1st class in terms of Might, but if it became necessary to determine which was stronger, how would that work?
.


Ganked from the comments on the Blog because I like the questions.

Thanks,
Lorrraine

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« Reply #24 on: July 20, 2010, 09:32:25 AM »
You have a list of powers and stats which are similar to Amber. In general gods have unique powers, the things they are gods of. This is perhaps less obvious in Greek mythology where gods are often involved with fairly mundane quarrels but nonetheless Aphrodite can make any mortal fall in love with her, Demeter can cause crops to grow, Herakles can take over from Atlas and hold the sky on his shoulders etc .. These are the elements that give the gods their domains, their spects if you will.

Now I can see how you can ignore that and just have the gods and PCs that happen to get certain jobs so to speak, but I can't help to feel that having an aspect say being the God of the West Wind or the God of Secrets, or the Goddess of Loathing or whatever would make PCs and NPCs feel more like gods and less like other immortal beings able to travel the multi-verse.

Do you have any mechanics to cover that sort of stuff or not? Have you considered and rejected it and if so what was your reasoning?
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« Reply #25 on: July 20, 2010, 10:42:16 AM »
Quote from: Lorrraine;394901
Hi RPGPundit,
Quote from: SteveRubio from the Pundit's blog

Should we assume that at the very start of the game, Hera Knows. And if we have to ask if she Knows, then she already Knows and we don't want her to Know? Especially if the PC in question is the offspring of Zeus on one of his JFK-like extramarital shenanigans?

How will things be rated once you go "above first class"? Obviously Atlas and Herakles are above 1st class in terms of Might, but if it became necessary to determine which was stronger, how would that work?



Ganked from the comments on the Blog because I like the questions.

Thanks,
Lorrraine


I was just about to re-post these questions of mine on the thread myself, but apparently I have been saved the trouble.
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Who wants to interview me about Lords of Olympus?
« Reply #26 on: July 23, 2010, 06:18:17 PM »
Lords of Olympus Q&A Pt. VII

Here we are, for the seventh week in a row (incredible!) answering your questions about the upcoming Lords of Olympus game.  The game is chugging right along now that I've gotten to the section on the gods themselves, and while I don't know if I could really get it done before I go on my vacation in mid-august, I hope at least I'll be very far along it.

Anyways, as always, if you have a question for me about the Lords of Olympus game, please send it to this thread.

Here are this week's questions and answers:

Q: Hi RPGPundit, Will Lords of Olympus have an index?

A: Well, that's really more of a question to ask my publisher, Precis Intermedia. In my personal experience, a really well- written complete table of contents is more useful than an index, but I hope that my book will have both. But those kinds of layout decisions will be up to the publisher. Sorry I couldn't be more helpful.


Q: What can you tell us about the art for Lords of Olympus?


A: I can tell you that I won't be doing it, thank Apollo!  That will be the business of my publisher, Precis Intermedia. I can only tell you (as total hearsay) that from my conversations with Brett, it sounds like he plans to make an investment in the art and is looking for all-original art; though please by no means take this as authoritative.   Maybe Brett himself will show up and clarify things in the comments of today's entry, but the art for the game is not my area.
I can tell you one thing, I would hope that, even if there's not a single other piece of art in the book, the one thing I would really try to push for is an illustration of every single deity; I think that's a really important element, to have drawings of each of the NPCs, and that these drawings be based on the descriptions provided.


Q: Given that Lords of Olympus includes Hades and the Underworld, does it include rules for continuing to adventure after death?

A:  You're actually asking several important questions here, namely, how have I handled death in general. Greek Mythology is fairly contradictory in its different tellings (and there's strong evidence that this is in part because religious beliefs changed strongly over time; the greek gods that they believed in during the time of Homer were not the same as those of Alexander, and neither were the same as those of the time of the Romans, obviously). There are all kinds of contradictory areas: the idea of whether gods can die at all, who was the child of whom, who was the wife of whom, just who got thrown into Tartarus and who didn't, etc.
In regards to the question of death, as with any of these other areas, I've had to make certain choices, and what I chose for the Lords of Olympus game is that death works like this: Primordial gods cannot die, period. Not in any way.  Mortals, of course, can die, and when they die a spirit that was apparently of that mortal appears for "processing" in the Underworld.  And as for Olympians and Titans, who are greater than mortals and less than Primordials, they live forever and do not age, but can die by violence. If they do, they do NOT reincarnate as a spirit in the underworld, they just end up becoming sort of one-with-the-multiverse; It is possible for certain very powerful beings (ie. The Fates, Zeus (perhaps only by invoking the Fates), and possibly Hecate) to bring a god back to life.
So are there rules for continuing to adventure after death? Not exactly rules as such, because the default assumption of the game is that you are playing a god, not a mortal. However, there is a complete step-by-step description of what happens to a mortal spirit after it dies and goes to the Underworld, so it would be very easy to infer from that how you could run such a thing.


Q: How much information will Lords of Olympus have on various important Realms such as Atlantis, Olympus, and the Underworld?

A: There are fairly significant descriptions of all three of these (but not SO significant as to not leave anything up to the individual GM's imagination), as well as several other important places like the Shadow Realm of Erebus,  Modern Earth, Classical Earth, Other Earths, the Pillars of Heaven, Hera's Realm, The Islands of Chaos, Scylla and Charybdis, The True Oracle of Delphi, Arcadia, and other Divine Realms and worlds.


Q: What music would work well as a soundtrack for a Lords of Olympus game?

A: Huh. That's one of those artsy-fartsy subjective kind of questions, isn't it?  I guess the answer would be "the fuck if I know, it depends on what campaign you run".  Are you running a game focused on Classical Earth and the great heroic adventures? Then you'd probably want soundtrack music from Gladiator or something.  Running a game full of intrigue where the players spend a lot of time scheming on Olympus? You might need to theme song to I, Claudius.  Running a game of interdimensional adventure? Then I guess you might want something psychedelic (though you might also vary from session to session depending on where PCs were).  Running a game set on Modern Earth? Then you could end up using almost anything, from Queen to the Cure, ABBA to Sinatra, Dave Brubeck to Radiohead.  And yes, I was just thinking of six different deities when I chose those particular artists, try to guess which ones!


Q: Can you give us a detailed blow by blow example of the system in Physical Combat and in Social Conflict? I have never been in a good diceless game, but plenty of good LARPS. I am interested in seeing what happens in LoO.

A: Well, for starters, there is no "Social Conflict", not in the sense of mechanics. A "blow by blow" of social conflict would look like one or more players speaking in-character, arguing with, lying to, or trying to manipulate one or more other characters who would also be speaking in-character. And how well the character would do would depend largely on how clever the player himself was, there is no "intelligence" or "charisma" stat in Lords of Olympus.
As for Physical combat, how that plays out can vary quite a lot too. Because a GM can choose to resolve physical combat quickly or make it drawn-out. In a situation where its very clear that there isn't really much of a challenge for one side, the GM can choose to just resolve the whole conflict with only a few words.  For example, if a PC with good abilities is fighting a group of four mortal bandits with no special powers or weapons, it will be convenient for the GM to merely state "ok, you take them all down", maybe adding "Do you kill them all, or try to leave one alive/do you let them run if they try to/etc?"
On the other hand, when combat is more significant or challenging than that, the GM should run an elaborate conflict. In this case, he should take notice of the environment where the fight is happening (including any special rules that world may have), where every participant is located in the environment, and how ready they are at the start of the fight. Then he should play it out more or less in "rounds"; where he first asks every player who participates what they would want to do as their immediate choice of action, then think of what each NPC would want to do.

Players should describe their character's intended actions, not what they hope the results will be. A player's description of action should only be long enough that it does not depend upon any specific result, stating only his actions for the situation as it currently exists.

Example: A player should say “I’ll try to knock down the door with a solid kick, ready to shoot if there’s anyone behind it”

A player should NOT say: “I break the door down and then shoot everyone there, then I go and loot the bodies and look out the window”.
Then the GM should compare Ability Classes (and make judgments regarding the environment or actions and whether these modify the comparison of ability Class), and then decide and explain what happened in that exchange, and repeat the process until combat is done.

The GM should still consider just how much detail is required; it is possible to have a moderate level of detail in actions, or a very specific level of detail.

For example, if two characters are in a battle together where the GM wants a moderate level of detail, it could be enough for the first character to state “I’m going to fight cautiously, keeping my guard up, testing to see how good the other guy is”, and the second to say “I’m going to strike fast and hard, hoping to overwhelm the other guy”.

On the other hand, if a heavily detailed conflict was preferred, the first character might have to state something more specifically, such as: “I’ll be holding my shield close to my body, and circle around slowly, watching to see if he lunges to block; if he does lunge I’ll try to push him as I block to see how strong he is compared to me”.  The second character might state “I lunge forward with a piercing strike toward his chest, leaning into it on my right knee and using my left bracer to try to push back his shield if he seeks to parry”.
I hope that more or less answers your question.


Q: Should we assume that at the very start of the game, Hera Knows. And if we have to ask if she Knows, then she already Knows and we don't want her to Know? Especially if the PC in question is the offspring of Zeus on one of his JFK-like extramarital shenanigans?

A: Well, I may have exaggerated the case just slightly with Hera. She isn't omniscient, just very clever. There will be things she won't know about, of course. Its more like, what she does know she has the capacity to learn most anything about.  And yes, Hera's particular obsession is making life miserable for Zeus' mistresses and bastards.
If you want a goddess who knows everything that's going down, that would be Themis, who may be one of the few women in the multiverse to be even more terrifying than Hera. We are talking about a goddess who slept with Zeus, and then managed to become Hera's "BFF" anyways, while still being one of Zeus' most trusted advisors; not to mention that part about sacrificing her own baby daughters to the Primordial of Doom so that they, and she, would gain power over Fate itself. Oh, and she may have secretly been responsible for the whole Titan-Olympian war thing.
Frankly, there's a handful of female deities who are just total powermongers and schemers, capable of finding out your worst secrets if they know to look, and able to Finish You rather brutally. Themis is the "nice" one. Hera is the one you have to watch out for if you're connected to Zeus in the wrong way.  And then there's Hecate. Oh boy.


Q: How will things be rated once you go "above first class"? Obviously Atlas and Herakles are above 1st class in terms of Might, but if it became necessary to determine which was stronger, how would that work?

A: I decided that the easiest way to work the question of Classes for NPCs, and how to compare them to PC classes, is to all have them on the very same ladder of values. The Numbered Classes are to indicate where the PCs fall with respect to their generation, and they also form the basis for comparison to most beings in the multiverse, including many of the gods in those abilities that they're not truly exceptional at. But those deities who are incredibly powerful, or incredibly good at certain specific things, will have Classes that are rated at "above first".  These are rated as "1st + 1", "1st + 2", "1st + 3", etc. So they would be compared, to each other or to the PCs, in the same way you'd compare anything else.  Just like a character with 3rd Class is better than a character with 5th Class, or either are better than a character with Heroic Class; so a Character with "1st+3" is better than a character with 1st, or than a character with "1st + 2". You can also have "tied" Classes above 1st also; where you're almost equal but just slightly worse than the guy or gal who got to that Class level first. Player characters, at the start of the game, can't begin with a Class higher than 1st, but characters who reach 1st Class can advance to "above first class" levels in Advancement.


Q: In general gods have unique powers, the things they are gods of. This is perhaps less obvious in Greek mythology where gods are often involved with fairly mundane quarrels but nonetheless Aphrodite can make any mortal fall in love with her, Demeter can cause crops to grow, Herakles can take over from Atlas and hold the sky on his shoulders etc .. These are the elements that give the gods their domains, their aspects if you will.
Now I can see how you can ignore that and just have the gods and PCs that happen to get certain jobs so to speak, but I can't help to feel that having an aspect say being the God of the West Wind or the God of Secrets, or the Goddess of Loathing or whatever would make PCs and NPCs feel more like gods and less like other immortal beings able to travel the multi-verse.
Do you have any mechanics to cover that sort of stuff or not? Have you considered and rejected it and if so what was your reasoning?


A: I'm glad you asked that. I realized that for some players of this game, having a divine thematic to their player character would be very important, it would be something that would make it feel much more authentic to greek mythology. For others, this would be something they might want as flavouring but not as the central aspect of the game. While yet others might not want this at all.  So what I ultimately decided to do was to create three sets of optional rules regarding these kinds of Thematic Divine Aspects, as well as guidelines for the GM to decide what kind of themes he would consider acceptable in his game; since offering very broad themes (ie. "God of the sky") can clash with existing deities and make themes very powerful, while narrow themes can create a very different effect; offering modern themes ("god of the internet/automatic weapons/space travel/etc") can create a very different feel of play than sticking to classical themes only, etc.
In the most basic least-intrusive option, players should choose a theme for their deity, but this theme is basically window-dressing to add flavour to the character.  In fact, in the greek mythos, this isn't entirely inappropriate, as only a few deities seem to actually do things directly related to their theme as you described, and those can still be handled by the use of other powers (Aphrodite has a more powerful version of Enchantment, Demeter uses Olympian Magic to make crops grow, etc). But there are two other options beyond that basic one, the moderate-level where theme can provide a mild but not insignificant bonus when the PC is dealing with issues or situations directly related to their theme; and the most-significant option where making an action or situation connect to the character's aspect makes them considerably more powerful in terms of abilities and subsequent increase in their powers. Of course, this is fairly game changing as an option, because undoubtedly players will be looking to try to "invoke" their theme at every possible opportunity.

Keep those questions coming!

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Spinachcat

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Who wants to interview me about Lords of Olympus?
« Reply #27 on: July 23, 2010, 07:44:25 PM »
Quote from: RPGPundit;395770
A: Well, for starters, there is no "Social Conflict", not in the sense of mechanics. A "blow by blow" of social conflict would look like one or more players speaking in-character, arguing with, lying to, or trying to manipulate one or more other characters who would also be speaking in-character. And how well the character would do would depend largely on how clever the player himself was, there is no "intelligence" or "charisma" stat in Lords of Olympus.


If a PC and a NPC are both skilled in Diplomacy (or whatever equivalent skill in LoO), how is the conflict solved in game?  What mechanically do the players do in this situation since there are no dice to roll?  

If a player bluffs the other players, and one of the other players is playing a god who has an ability to see through lies, how would that operate in game?

I know how to adjudicate all this on a tabletop, but I do not know how a GM does this in a diceless game.  In a LARP, we either rock/paper/scissors or the PC powers are hard-coded - AKA "Detect Lies" means the other player would have to reveal if he was actually fibbing in his bluff.

Quote from: RPGPundit;395770
On the other hand, when combat is more significant or challenging than that, the GM should run an elaborate conflict.


How is Initiative determined?  Obviously Hermes goes first, but who goes next?

Quote from: RPGPundit;395770
Then the GM should compare Ability Classes (and make judgments regarding the environment or actions and whether these modify the comparison of ability Class), and then decide and explain what happened in that exchange, and repeat the process until combat is done.


If the Ability Classes are equal, what is the determining factor in deciding the victor?

How does David fight Goliath?  AKA, if the PC is outclassed by a far greater foe, how is trickery + luck + whatever measured by the LoO system so the lesser opponents have a chance of victory?    And what if there are multiple David-wannabes in the battle?

Lorrraine

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Who wants to interview me about Lords of Olympus?
« Reply #28 on: July 25, 2010, 12:19:42 AM »
Hi RPGPundit,

How will Lords of Olympus handle prophecy?

Could Primordials work as PCs for an extremely high powered game?

Who would win in a race between Iris and Hermes?

Do any means of travel between worlds exist other than World Walking and Promethean World Walking?

How do Ineffable Names compare to Power Words?

Thanks,
Lorrraine

Rubio

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Who wants to interview me about Lords of Olympus?
« Reply #29 on: July 26, 2010, 01:02:54 PM »
I'd like to second spinachat's query as to divine powers that involve seeing through lies, or magic like Aphrodite's that makes people fall in love. E.g. how would Aphrodite's powers affect a PC that's trying to keep information from her? Would you just automatically say "don't bother trying, Aphrodite is better than you"? Or would that require roleplay? In that case, Aphrodite doesn't really have any magic that the GM's ability to convince a (potentially belligerent) payer to open up and let information slip.

On to an actual question or two:

Can you provide a play-by-play of character creation?

Can you provide a more concrete blow-by-blow of the following combat situation: A God and a Hero are walking into a building loaded down with guns. They have to get through their enemies Matrix-style (why yes, this IS the lobby scene), which consists of a Mortal security force of about two-dozen that has a Kyklops and a cthonic beast that resembles a low-rent Kerberos as backup.
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