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Thejeff: The problem of basing it off economic need is that it becomes an economic drain on the person in question. Take the hemophiliac. Should he be forced to spend every dollar he might ever get his hands on to survive, with the state only going in when he absolutely can't survive without help? Is it reasonable that a poorer hemophiliac should have to pay far less for the exact same treatment?
You know me so well, thejeff. Thank you for understanding. It's not quite the truth, however. Regarding how society should deal with different people having different needs, it is a complex issue whatever way you look at it. Thing is, BOTH views that "men should pay more for eating more food" and "you should pay the same since you're paying for a service" are quite defensible. Unless, of course, you take the approach that any different needs are the sole responsibility of the one with those needs. Hemophiliacs are an interesting case: The substances they require to survive are famously expensive, weighing in at millions per year. If you DO want the state to pay for that, you also have to decide on a point where it's not the state's business anymore, and further, you need a justification for the point chosen.
I am not quite as much of a Randian as some people here think I am. There are very legitimate areas the state should pay for, via taxes. I just find it strange that larger people get no sympathy from the liberal statists, when so many others do.
Well, Sweden never got much of the Marvel lines. Anyway, it shows that it's quite possible to have Peter Parker retire.
If lantern archons are what you use, it is quite enough to abstract them. At least until the AoE spells start flying or someone decides to whack the archons. Simply make the attacks and be done with it. For even more efficiency, colour code the dice so you can roll one d20 and the proper damage dice of a certain colour and do all of them at once.
Consider this: a restaurant's expenses for the customer are the costs for meat, veggies etc, salaries for the staff, energy and insurances, the location, ad campaigns, etc. Of all these, only the food costs more for a big eater. Should men then be forced to pay a significant markup for insurance, ad campaigns and so on?
Another way to view it is that the customer pays to get fed. Is it reasonable that someone bigger should pay more for the exact same service?
A level 16 wizard? Well, he can't use wishes or imprisonment (yet, unless via scrolls, of course), but generally, an 11 level disparity is not something you will manage to deal with. Consider this: He knows where you are, since you have his book. All he needs to do is pop in while invisible and summon a few beasts with Summon Monster VIII when you are sleeping. If he even cares enough about you. Now, the book: he is not going to fall for explosive runes on it. It has been compromised. He has other spellbooks. How you die is merely a matter of how sadistic he is and the quality of his imagination. When depends on how important you are. If, well, if really isn't an issue. And, as was noted: Kiiiiinda rooting for him here as well.
Complete Book of Elves had a neat little story about what revenge can mean, and why rings of regeneration are not your friend.
Mackenzie Kavanaugh wrote:
What would you consider a fair solution?
If we're debating physiology and sex (yes, sex, not gender), then how much should women pay for their restaurant meals? Given they have a lower average weight than men and, again on average, eat less than men? Is it fair that they have to pay the same price as a man for a portion that they don't need as much of? Would it be fair that men should pay more for the same service than women (getting fed)?
When you have buses with two-seat rows, the ugly method is to sit in the aisle seat with your bag in the window seat. To combat this effectively, all everyone has to do is target that bag seat for preference, even if the entire rest of the bus is empty. Always remember to say thanks when they move, too.
A good backstory is something that gives the GM a clue to what you want your character to be ABOUT. Most characters can be described in terms of conflicts, at least outside the gaming medium. Can a relatively powerless person succeed where the great heroes of the ages did not, merely due to his strength of character? Can a person deny the wanderlust within him and what price will he pay for not doing so? Can a wanderer accept his heritage and assume the mantle that is his? What will a prince do when given a chance to help his kingdom even if it will risk his soul? I assume all these should be relatively familiar.
But in RPGs, we get characters whose main defining trait is "I can do 1d12+567 damage when I power attack". I don't know about you, but to me it feels like a pretty big waste. I know many don't agree with me.
If you have a backstory to write, try to find a theme, a conflict. Is your character's focus on the conflict between wilderness and civilization? Is it about duty and doing good? Freedom and security? Trust and vulnerability? So long as you take care not to make that ALL he or she is, it's a good way to find a backstory that works to build off.
If I were to do it, I would work through the iconics to see what would make them more arabian in flavour. Most of the other parts to having an arabian setting would be fluff, as in cultures, laws, descriptions, and so on, or easily reskinned crunch like weapons. Generally, they would not use as heavy armours. I would suggest using the 13th age rules with some other arabian setting (Al-Qadim, Curse of the Burning Sands, Caliphate nights, etc). It wouldn't be too difficult.
Well, not quite, Tormsskull. It's okay if you want something to be important to your character. You could tell the GM so, but making a list of stuff that is okay to mess with is not. Whatever you don't set up as important to you IS fair game.
A powerful mother isn't necessarily an ally, and even if she is, you might well be roughly that power level yourself when you interact with her. As for the relationship between the mother and your character, well, such an NPC could fill many roles in a campaign. Harsh, individualistic, territorial, it would be someone quite useful. Now, the GM can never be entirely sure how you imagine her, but if you describe her well, the GM can make a decent attempt - and you would have created her together. When you do meet her in the campaign, she might have changed in some way within what you described. Say, she since adopted an orphan. What would your character think of this? Would she think of it as the mother mistreating the new disciple? Would there be jealousy that mother never treated her as kindly? Would the character have her angry feelings toward her mother pre-empted and have to deal with them? What would this mean if the mother asked her for something? Was there some other reason for the mother to adopt an orphan?
Using, even slightly changing, the backstory is something that should be done with care, but why give up an opportunity to create something good together?
But if you have to communicate about every single little detail before changing it, you are by necessity going to lose every possible sort of twist, reveal or point to doing so in the first place. So, thejeff, while communication is a good thing, it doesn't necessarily help here.
What you can do is give the GM something to work with. Put in an old comrade in arms who fell down a waterfall and disappeared, a mystery of some kind your character has gotten into touch with, some unsolved issue. Next, you put in the things that are important to you and state them as clearly as you can. Too much of this will get your backstory unused. For other things, assume the GM can do as he pleases, and hopefully you will get the best possible use out of your backstory.
Backstory is spotlight time. Honestly, so long as the GM doesn't treat it crudely, I am fine with it. A kidnapped sibling would be a good thing, if only the character is then used beyond "someone the BBEG kidnapped to get you to ...."
Thing is: The GM is in charge of the world. Your backstory is a part of your character, or at least the backstory as you understood it, but where things have gone since then is strictly GM territory. You get to say your PC was raised by a skilled potion-making woman, you don't get to keep her service in potion-production in the campaign, at least not automatically. You get to say your father had a mighty magical sword when you were young, you don't get to have that sword, at least not straight away. And so on.
Well, if it is the fact that nothing in your backstory can be changed, a misunderstanding of your character, reinterpreted, expanded or otherwise changed, indeed INCLUDING THINGS YOU NEVER TOLD THE GM WERE IMPORTANT TO YOU, the ONLY sane response for the GM is to avoid your backstory entirely, like the plague, and not try ANY sort of plotline connected to it. After all, any sort of idea touching on it might change something you consider sacrosanct, leading to you getting the GM to stop GMing, mid-session if necessary, right? Honestly, at that point it is probably better not to use backstory at all.
A large part of it is whether you see it as "screwing with the player".
I made an Exalted character once... A dragon blooded diplomat. She never exalted, so instead she was sent by her family to rein in her stupid but skilled warrior brother who exalted as a chosen of fire. On their first trip, the brother challenged a sleazy diplomat to single combat despite my character's warnings. She fled from the inn they were staying in, thereby severing her ties to her family, just before the inn was burnt down the night before the challenge by the challenged. Her family kept seeking her, but she fled far enough not to be found. Play started and went on for years, game time and real.
Then one day, she meets her mother. She wonders why she ran. Butbutbut... My brother died... My responsibility... Silly daughter, he was a chosen of fire. He survived and killed the would be assassin easily at the challenge.
I was gobsmacked. I never thought he would. I never once made the rather obvious connection. With this, my character's family, with a very strained relationship, became an interesting part of the campaign.
However, the GM never changed what I wrote.
I think it is important to distinguish between what the character thinks his background is and what it really is. It is right up the fantasy alley, after all: You are not the son of a pig farmer. In truth, you are the lost child of a great knight yadda yadda. I wouldn't contradict the backstory... But the backstory is a perception, not the objective truth.
The only problem, thejeff, is that there is no way from here to there. I have yet to see anything beyond censorship to solve the issue. Getting some companies to produce less will shift their market shares to others (since it apparently is profitable).
So if a ban is the only way you will get less at all, are you still going to oppose a ban?
Well, possibly. I mean, either you have a person with few obligations to their job, community, family, whatever already, i.e. someone who can go gallivanting off into the countryside to beat up lizards sleeping in basements, in which case there is a reason for them to be so unattached. Or, you start with someone who has all those attachments, at which point you need to sever the attachments before the character can run off to beat basement lizards.
Different strokes, I guess.
Backstory is something between a weapon and a horrible heap of sludge, usually. Demand none as a GM, and you get NOTHING, characters that sprung into existence at the starting bar. Demand a little, and you get stuff like "I am the last prince of an elven kingdom that just fell and I saved myself by jumping through a portal to the world we play in" or "I am a frost druid from the frozen north who travelled a thousand miles to end up in a tavern at the edge of the burning desert". Demand a lot, and you get heaps of aunts, siblings, abandoned hobbies, relationships to teachers and parents, FOR EACH OF A HUNDRED OR MORE FAMILY MEMBERS.
What I want in a backstory is some kind of conflict you put some thought into, a reason for adventuring, and hopefully some relationships to one or more of the other PCs.
I have suggested it before: Dump charisma. Remove it entirely from the game, make roleplaying a non-mechanism process. Set Intelligence or Wisdom as base stat for the Cha skills, let bards and sorcerers cast off Int or Wis, clerics channel off Wisdom, and do the few other adjustments it would take.
The decrease the point buy by one sixth, so 8/12/17/21 point buy becomes the new method.
Watch everyone dump Int instead.
SotC does not deal with fighting a creature's arms or the like as separate parts. If that is what you want, it's probably not too difficult to implement. No, in SotC, you climb all the way up the colossus to a special mark, usually on the head, where a hit can kill the creature. There has been a few tries to implement this, at least one very good. Anyone know a link?
As I said, Aranna, there is nothing preventing you from starting a service for people who don't want to see such fanservice where they can look up which anime series don't contain it. Then all who want not to see it can be certain they won't. Do it yourself, market this service to the various anime syndicates, set up subscription models or marks of decency that all can follow, whatever you choose can be done just as you wish it.
A wet forest doesn't burn. The Stolen Lands don't seem to conjure images of Australia. :-)
So, if you want a lesser forest fire, feel free. A chase sounds great, to my thinking. It is an abstraction of precisely this. Don't forget to have a bunch of bandits harassing them both in melee and with arrows. It is about killing them, so let them spend resources for a while, then have them attack. Preparing the route with traps is also an of course.