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It's actually kind of sad what happened with the game. Whatever happened during development hell was probably the most interesting story there was to come. But PR dictates they can't say what happened, so there's no way to learn and studios in the same position will feel alone. It's just not healthy to let PR Firms dictate gaming history.
Employees leave game companies all the time, and many go on to discuss the problems they faced during development.
"PR" doesn't have the eternal information stranglehold that you think it does.
GM DarkLightHitomi wrote:
I wonder if you can think of some reasons, first. I'll be happy to tell you, but perhaps try and consider some possible explanations before I do.
It might help for you to think of the real world during a time where economic factors were similar, and to replace the idea of a "spellcaster" with a real world analogue that fills the same economic role. I certainly have a few in mind, but you can probably come up with ones that I haven't!
Give it a try.
(Also, the idea that there are "10-20 adventurers per continent" is utter hogwash. There have been something like five different adventure paths located in the Varisian coast alone (which is itself only a small part of a much larger continent), each of which has had its own party of adventurers (and, likely, replacements for dead or dropped out adventurers along the way). And those are only the ones involved in truly epic adventures. We know of many other adventuring groups (Ameiko's former group, rival groups that PCs have to contend with, and ones we never see at all). In all likelihood there are hundreds - if not thousands - of active adventurers in any given continent at any given point in time. Hell, much of the Pathfinder Society itself is comprised of professional adventurers, and that organization is massive. Mind you, this is all based on Pathfinder, but other campaign settings are certainly similar in this regard, not the least of which is the freaking Forgotten Realms.)
Underpants gnomes confirmed for 5e Monster Manual.
GM DarkLightHitomi wrote:
First, simulationism, I am perhaps unusual (very likely) but I don't have to think about it to notice when things don't jive between mechanics and the game world. For me saying that something costs x much because thats just the way the world is, is not good enough. It breaks immersion for me because I can innately see that it doesn't match with other aspects of the world.
Except that every single "mismatch" you pointed out in your last post didn't actually exist. None of them.
It isn't a case of "well if you think about it..." for me it is as obvious as the color of the sky.
Really? The complexities of a fictional, magic-suffused global economy are "as obvious as the color of the sky"?
You should probably be running a financial trading firm, then.
Things need to be plausable and consistant even when following an alternate set of natural laws. DnD has some things that are not consistant,
If it does, they are not any of the things you listed.
GM DarkLightHitomi wrote:
And this is why I avoid these sorts of "simulationist" notions at all costs. They're an exercise in GM's mental masturbation and little more. "Look how much armchair economist thought I put into my campaign world!"
You have given yourself a requirement (develop a realistic world) that you cannot actually satisfy. You try to, and you pretend at it, but you haven't.
For instance: "heroes" (read: adventurers) aren't 1-in-a-million, they aren't the only audience for magical rituals, ritualists don't work for the common folk, and prices aren't raised because there isn't any need to. Literally none of the criticisms you have of the ritual "economy" are actually true, unless you deliberately design your world to make them true, which is just cutting off your nose to spite your face.
GM DarkLightHitomi wrote:
I don't think you have a coherent viewpoint; you're telling us the system is in dire need of management by the GM for balance's sake in one thread, and in the other thread asserting that a good system doesn't need the GM to manage it to achieve balance. I think that this cognitive dissonance is arising from your hesitance to acknowledge balance as an important design concern.
2, yeah but who decided how much was appropriate to spend on rituals and why that amount and were they actually putting thought into the deeper consequences of that choice or did they look purely at the mechanics and no further?
Game designers did. In much the same way that they decided all the other facets of the game's mechanics.
Oh and were the lovers of the episodic adventures that take the characters a couple days to complete then everything between that and the next adventure costs nothing? Did they give any thought to the roleplay that would consume resources?
They probably found a nice middle ground. But you appear to be saying that the system ought to provide a one-size-fits-all approach to treasure allocation. Are you not of the opinion that the GM has the responsibility to adjust treasure levels appropriately if there is an expectation that the players will be spending significant amounts of money between adventures?
Once again, you're crowing that the GM should have control over the system to improve the game in one sentence, and in the next you're criticizing the system for not being absolutely deterministic about how your game should work.
3, absolutely. Maybe not really good stuff, but certainly the basics. 90% of folks in the world are level 1s, therefore 90% of what is available in the world is, or at least should be, for level 1s.
Endure Elements is a really low-level ritual that trivializes the vast majority of weather events. Is it your opinion that D&D parties should always have the resources to use Endure Elements, and thus always have weather events trivialized for them?
4,these are questions I feel should be answered when designing the system, and that I feel were ignored in the design of 4e.
Then your feelings are mistaken. They were not ignored during 4e's design. Search for an alternative explanation. I'm confident you can find one.
Fudging things might get an acceptable answer, but that is different from the system having those answers already.
It does; or, rather, it provides a clear framework for coming up with tailored answers to those questions that fit your campaign.
GM DarkLightHitomi wrote:
Besides, any decent GM can make a good experience out of any system, but a good system shouldn't rely on having a good GM as they are not exactly common.
You literally just got done telling us in another thread that system balance isn't critical because it should be left up to the GM to ensure parity between PCs.
Second, rituals are expensive.
No, they aren't. In fact, the treasure allotment by level is adjusted upwards under the assumption that the party will spend a certain amount on ritual components.
Perhaps your characters never had to spend three weeks trekking from one place to the next, but some of those rituals are ones you want to cast every night to make camp in the wild or otherwise use commonly in "everyday" life of the character. So if its three weeks between one pot of gold and the next, even just 10gp each night is expensive and don't forget everything else one wants to buy.
Are you suggesting that a party of 1st level adventurers should be in a position to use safety-boosting rituals every single night?
Also, consistancy and immersion is important to some people like me. That means that the world has to feel like the npcs actually live there and that the world isn't just there for me to kick over. How many of those npcs can use those rituals to make their lives easier and how many can afford them. Additionally, how and why are these rituals easy to find and learn if people who can afford them and use them are extremely rare superheroic legends who would probably be just given them in gratitude for their heroic deeds or out of fear of their might?
Do you believe that these are difficult questions to answer? Have you tried answering them yourself? Do you want them to be answered? Or are you much happier continuing to operate under the mistaken belief that they don't have answers?
GM DarkLightHitomi wrote:
First, time to create a character. This is only a minkr thing,
No, it isn't. I have run games for literally hundreds of players, and a super majority of them appreciate a simple, straightforward character creation process that doesn't take too much time. They want to play.
Coincidentally, I want to play, too. I don't want to dedicate the first two or three sessions of a gaming group meeting to character creation.
as some players enjoy making characters as much as playing them,
Some do. Many don't.
but I did mention class packs which address this without getting rid of the classless core of the game and even comes with additional benefits. Want to be a dex fighter in light armor? Trade in that heavy armor proficiency for two weapon fighting or similar completely within the rules.
This is already supported in many systems by class feature choices and archetypes. Both Pathfinder and 4e have versions of this, but the selections are carefully managed to ensure that none completely outshine the rest.
Second is predictable parity. This is not only done just fine in classless systems (savage worlds anyone?)
But is very easy to knock off balance with a smart player and dumb player in the same group. No matter the system, such a combo will leave players feeling like there is a disparity of power and inevitably try to fix the system though the system isn't the problem. Its how players use it. That is why a gm is so important, because they need to balance the players against each other, not the system.
This is a very absolute perception that you have. Is it your opinion that the system is never responsible for balance issues? Or that it's impossible for the system to be responsible for balance issues? And that, therefore, balance shouldn't even be considered during system creation because "the GM can handle it"? That really seems to be the crux of what you're saying here.
And I think most of us know better than to believe that.
I'm astonished by the number of people claiming that rituals were "too expensive". Not only are they very affordable at the level you can learn them, but the utility rituals don't scale in cost with level, so in a few levels their cost becomes completely trivial compared to the massive amounts of gold you are receiving from adventuring.
GM DarkLightHitomi wrote:
Classes are pointless restrictions as far as I'm concerned. They are packages which more often then not, grant abilities I don't want, while preventing or restricting abilities I do want.
Classes, among like twelve other things, dramatically cut down on the time required to create a character and help to maintain some level of predictable parity between players in the same group. Did you not realize this? Or do you not care about these things?
It seems to me that we won the war the same way most wars are won: the other side's most stalwart warriors died.
This was a moral panic, though, so instead of violence taking its toll they simply died of natural causes, and the relevance they used to possess changed hands to a generation of D&D players that finally grew up.
So we should ignore that many of the rules systems in early D&D editions are terrible, because to question their wisdom would be disrespectful?
I don't always agree with lokiare, but Gygax and Arneson were visionary because of their game concept, not their rules design. Taking inspiration from them is fine, as long as that inspiration doesn't include some of the more laughable rules systems they came up with.
But in all the years TSR and now WotC has been in business with D&D, it has never dropped below Number 1 in sales, ever until two and a half to three years ago now.
Except for when White Wolf was outselling them, right? (And, let's be honest, one of the main reasons for the unique circumstances of the last couple of years is the fact that, for the first time ever, a company was able to piggyback off of the D&D rules system to create a supported RPG product with a built-in audience that already knew the game, thanks to the OGL.)
You seem fully intent on blaming all of the (imagined or otherwise) ills suffered by D&D of late on poor customer service, which I hazard a guess has something to do with the fact that you used to work in their customer service department (you wouldn't be the first person to imagine their workplace suffering in their absence) when the situation is far more parsimoniously explained through other factors, like the fact that there have been zero rules material releases in over a year. I'm not sure why you choose to ignore market-related factors, but you are.
But all of that is tangential to the point of this thread, which is to discuss a standalone D&D product. Criticizing it for playing poorly under Encounters is about as relevant to the discussion as calling a sports team inept after watching them play in a game where they all had the flu - after it's over, it's over, and anyone enjoying it in the future aren't going to care at all about how it worked that one time - and criticizing the Encounters OP system is probably something you should take elsewhere (likely to another forum entirely).
I think that it is unreasonable to take donations from the players, no one, not even the GM should have to pay for an adventure for Encounters.
Because you say so, or what?
It has not been this way for years and now all of a sudden it is ok to charge us as a GM and or as you suggest as a player.
"But it's tradition!" isn't much of an argument, I'm afraid.
One has to ask why is it ok?
Because you're getting a product, and in most of the real world that requires that you pay for it.
Believing that you should be getting this game product for free because that's how it's always been is pretty much the definition of gamer entitlement.
Someone mentioned (in this thread) that WotC is a large company and because they are they can charge more for their products. I find it sad that this is the mentality that is being perpetrated in today's society and some people are buying it.
I think it has more to do with the ever-shrinking relevancy of the local physical game store in comparison to online storefronts and online services; providing free play sets to in-store audiences is no longer the revenue driver that it once was.
TritonOne I am not saying this is you nor am I accusing anyone that they are wrong to think it, I just think that as a company WotC needs to be able to put this to rest. They are a large company and D&D Encounters is a media tool for them. By making it free for everyone then it promotes their product further and encourages people as a whole to buy their product to participate with books and such at a later time.
In theory. In practice, that may no longer be the case due to the shifting retail environment I described earlier.
Encounters is and always has been a gateway to D&D as a means if introducing the game to the masses and possibly making it so that they would want to continue to play the characters that they started in Encounters in their own home game, with books they are buying from WotC to do so.
And by "always" you mean "for the last few years".
WotC no longer is doing that in many ways and missing out on huge opportunities to do so.
Or they're no longer bleeding cash trying to prop up a dying retail model.
People are starting to become bitter towards WotC and D&D in general with each set of D&D Encounters that come out. This to me is very sad and I am reading about their sales going down because of it.
It's very, very unlikely that any sales are dropping because of the choice to charge for Encounters material. It is far more likely that the fact that WotC has not released any new rules material to the retail market for well over a year now is responsible for the observed drop in sales.
With the advent of D&D Next I am sure we will see a major spike in sales once again and maybe even garner the coveted #1 spot in overall RPG sales once again...
There's really absolutely no question here that this will happen. When 5e is released, D&D will be at the top of the RPG sales chart.
but how long until they drop to 2nd, 3rd or even 4th place again based on their customer service and lack there in that they have shown of late.
Again, you seem to want to attribute an observed drop in sales to subjective, quality-based causes when the reality is that the primary driver of sales in the RPG world is new product, and there has been no new D&D rules material in a long time.
Their own forums are rife with people that are upset with WotC as well.
This has been the case for as long as WotC has had forums.
The fact that WotC does not come on to their own forums in threads there (other then blogs and such) shows they are not as caring as they could/should be.
No, it means that they know how to manage their audience. You do not engage people who are unreasonably upset.
It is something I would love to see change with them, but I will not hold my breath waiting for this. This is all based on my own experience and observances. One may not agree with me but it is what it is.
You keep saying this. We know. We know it's your own "experiences" (read: half-considered take on what must be going on). You need to find something to base your judgments on other than your "experience", because your "experience" is consistently leading your conclusions astray.
I even see some of the same type of vitriol turned toward Paizo here as well... but I also see everyone from the CEO's down to the shipping department on here speaking and chatting with us and answering questions.
Paizo (and Paizo's fanbase) are very lucky to be able to have that relationship, but it is in large part due to the relatively small size of the community and the well of good will Paizo has managed to stockpile.
This goes a long way to perpetrate a great community and one that is encouraged to buy Paizo products because it is showing they actually care about what the customers say. WotC cares too.. I know they do, but it just seems to not be seen as much as it could be in their customer service and the seeming lack of listening to what their customer base wants instead of just assuming it.
Assuming that a bunch of angry internet people on your forums is in any way representative of what your customer base wants is a terrible way to do business. They can draw your attention to issues, but they are not a representative sample.
0 sets of maps.
Except for the, like, five full-color maps on the DM's screen, right?
Comparing this adventure to an AP is like comparing a tomato to an apple. They are the same color at least. Technically they are both a fruit. But that is where it ends.
Bull. Both are 96-page products (the D&D adventure is actually more than that, but we'll ignore that for the sake of comparison), both are designed to be compatible with the same - or roughly the same - rules system, both are adventures, both contain a substantial page count dedicated to setting information, both are physical product releases, both are priced comparably once you factor the DM screen in - the list of similarities goes on.
This was obviously designed as a stand-alone product that was adapted for use in Encounters, but what the hell does that matter here? This is a product page to purchase the product, something that you couldn't even do with Encounters products until recently (you had to be a registered storefront to receive a pack). And, since that Encounters season is now over, no one buying this product is going to be playing it in an official organized play capacity.
So how about we stop judging the value of this product as an organized play vehicle, since exactly zero people wondering whether to buy it will be using it in that capacity (the product page doesn't even mention Encounters), and instead start discussing the actual merits of the product as adventure material? Because so far, of the nearly 20 posts in this thread discussing the product, only two have actually focused on the quality of the adventure.
It is an expensive product. You compare this to one of the adventure path books. It is not NEARLY the quality of the adventure path books. For one the AP's are full color inside with pages that are of high quality and stock. The binding on the AP's is glued and not stapled and the AP's are 12 bucks cheaper and come with a PDF if you so want them. A PDF that can have the images extracted from them.
The APs don't come with a DM screen.
The screen that comes with it looks nice but it lacks in utility for the GM. It has a picture of the city and environs that is not as good as it could be with a fairly detailed legend but in tiny print. It has no tables or anything like that.
The pictures of the Dale and cities are on the player-facing side. Did you even bother to look at the other side? The DM's side has an area map, random encounter tables, treasure tables, weather tables, travel time tables, naming tables, and so on. It's chock full of tables.
What is doesn't have is rules tables, because the adventure is designed to be played in any of three different systems. So, instead, all of the tables are setting-based.
Paizo has Pathfinder Society scenarios that are pay to play... but that has been from the beginning and if you have a game event PFS (Pathfinder Society) provides them for free if you have 4 or more tables. Plus you can extract the images from the PDF's of them.
Legacy of the Crystal Shard is designed for 12 sessions of play. Purchasing 12 sessions worth of Pathfinder Society PDFs would run you $48, and you wouldn't get the screen or physical copies of any of the material.
So please, let's not pretend that this is somehow beyond the pale for tabletop RPG organized play.
The North has been detailed many times. Seems like pay for a product I alreayd bought... 3 times already?
Then it sounds like this product isn't for you. That doesn't make it a bad product - it just makes it one that you personally don't need. But don't concern troll like the price is somehow outrageous. It's not.
Now had that this is compatible with an editoon that stil hasn't came out (and probably will be very different from the playtest), yeah, no.
It's compatible with three different editions and is designed to be played now, while we're still waiting for 5e to be released.
32$ for that!?
Why is that surprising? You get 96 pages of material - the same as a $23 Pathfinder adventure path book - plus a four-panel DM screen (which typically run between $10-20 if purchased individually). In other words, it costs pretty much exactly what you might expect it to cost.
Vlad Koroboff wrote:
If you attempt to apprehend a known serial murderer and he resists arrest, and in so resisting brings about the deaths of even more people, do you at some point say, "Well, maybe if we stop trying to arrest him he'll stop killing people?"
Vod Canockers wrote:
Ease of use, "universal" acceptance, portability, stability, and to some extent untraceableness (almost everyone buys something that they don't really want others to know they are buying whether it is illegal or just embarrassing).
So far, it really only manages to capitalize on untraceableness and portability. And the latter is questionable.
The veeeeeery end of this RT article mentions Putin dismissing prior accords as relics of a now-deceased government and asserting that Russia is therefore no longer bound by those accords.
If you have been actively applying for jobs that you are qualified for for two years and have not received any offers, the reality is that adding your DMing experience to your resume is not going to fix the problem. There is some area of the job application process that you are not nailing, and that's what you need to be focused on.
Are you writing strong, customized cover letters when appropriate?
Is your resume clean, concise, accurate, and formatted properly?
Are you applying for positions that you are qualified for - positions that are actually entry-level?
Are you being called in for interviews? If so, are your interview skills strong?
Have you been treating the job application process like a job? You should be spending multiple hours (at least two) every work day researching for and applying for jobs.
In the meantime, consider applying for work you are over-qualified for and that is easy to get, even if it's something as menial as fast food work. You are wasting time right now, and the more time that passes without employment, the more questions prospective employers are going to have about why you weren't working for that period of time. Getting a job, even if it's not a desirable job, will give you an income (however small) and will allow you to list your employment on your resume. Just make sure that you don't become complacent; you need to keep applying to jobs just as frequently.
They're still apologizing for that time in 1998 when a pair of Canadian moose strayed within a few miles of the Minnesota border.
But does it get your support? How do you feel about the rights of women to not be enslaved? Out of sight, out of mind? Or do you care enough about the future to sign on the dotted line?
I generally don't support policy positions that are guaranteed to singlehandedly destabilize the United States.
Which, by the way, was supposed to guarantee their borders against incursion by Russia, one of the signatory nations. Russia is trying to make the argument that because the Ukrainian government has changed, all accords made with the previous Ukrainian government are null and void.
I personally thought some of the Assassin's Creed series' (namely the Ezio trilogy) QTE sequences were solid.
It sounds like your complaint, then, isn't necessarily with the idea of QTEs (which really just boil down to interactive cinematic sequences) but rather with the poor implementation of QTEs we see in many titles. Are there any examples of games you've played that contained QTE-like sequences that you enjoyed?
That's very helpful, Irontruth.
I was looking for an explanation that is just a little deeper than that, though. Perhaps some reasons for why QTEs annoy you? Or what aspects of certain QTEs were annoying? Others in this thread were able to explain their issues with QTEs just fine.
No it feels like an MMORPG with each class having a number of abilities which have basically cool down timers.
Cool down timers have been in D&D forever. See: spells which return each day, rages that are usable once per fight, dragon's breath that recharges in a certain number of rounds, etc.
Some can be used at will, some only once per encounter, etc... Healing surge is the equivalent of "Quick Heal" in Dragon Age.
Which isn't an MMORPG.
The class abilities may be called by different names like "Spells" or "Fighting Maneuvers" (I am not familiar enough to know the actual names) but that is just window dressing because they all function exactly the same way mechanically.
Except that they don't function the same way mechanically.
So like in Dragon Age II
Which still isn't an MMORPG.
my archer may be able to shoot an exploding arrow
Exploding arrows in 4e are consumable items. Not powers.
and then has to wait for the cool down and my mage may throw a fireball which accomplishes effectively the same thing only the window dressing is different.
Except that the fireball is a power, so it's actually on a cooldown (the arrow, as a consumable, isn't). And it has the arcane keyword, which changes how the wizard prepares the power. And it uses a different stat for attack and damage. And it doesn't rely on the use of a weapon. I could go on. Hopefully you get the point.
Powers can appear superficially similar. That doesn't mean they actually are similar.
No, I get that, Irontruth. I'm just struck by how odd it is that this is the one area of game design where certain gamers tend to be in favor of less interactivity. In almost all other aspects of game design, gamers tend to love high levels of interactivity. But there's something about the idea of QTEs that makes gamers wish they could interact less with the game.
The question around Bitcoin is not if a private company (and by extension the population engaged with its secure and maintenance through wallets,mining, etc.) CAN make and carry out a viable currency, the question is whether or not they SHOULD.
Except that isn't the question at all, because Bitcoin is an open source protocol developed by an anonymous dude and utilized in an utterly decentralized fashion. There is no company that created it, and there is no company that maintains it.
Once you know the practice, however, the transparency is there. It's not like I'm ever surprised by how much I need to tip.
To think that if you and your fellow 4E fans fail to support it it will fail is arrogance in the extreme and just plain wrong.
Arrogance of the same sort that we see here all the time, where people who don't like 4e insist that it must be a commercial failure because 3.x fans don't support it, right?