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Mammon Cultist

Sissyl's page

6,862 posts (7,623 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 7 aliases.


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Diffan wrote:
Let me ask, you find a product you like. Do you instantly trust them to continue to make the exact same product forever?

No. Not normally. I can count on one hand the times I did so on one hand, probably. It does put plusses on my chance of picking something up from the producers again, though. After enough plusses, I start buying without checking it up first. Now, sometimes that gets me a crap book, one I would not have bought if I had checked up first. That is okay. What I gain from it is familiarity, cozying down to read something I know I will probably like, looking forward to the next one, discussing it on the net with boneheads like me, and so on. There is a name for this: Brand loyalty. It is what gets money rolling in year in and year out for producers. It is what people WANT. It is why, for example, Forgotten Realms sold well. People knew what getting a new FR book meant. In reading that book, they knew they would be reminded of years and years of good emotions.

The price of that for the producers is that you really have to be a bit careful when making new branded products. Coca Cola learned this when they tried New Coke. It is an often-taught lesson to companies that if they have brand loyalty, it IS NOT JUST THEIR POTATO ANYMORE. Change it too much, particularly if you do it in an insensitive and heavy-handed way, and you LOSE brand loyalty, something that took years and decades to build up.

It's all well and good to say "It is their property, they can do with it as they please", and "You can't expect people not to change things in their IP", and so on, but fact is, it doesn't matter one whit. They did all they could to cash in (Forgotten Realms being the foremost such money grab during 4E to my mind), and they have realized there was a pretty significant price tag attached to doing so. And while 5E sounds far better... not every mistake can be easily smoothed over. Sometimes you really need to build up your trust again. There is a limit to what people will overlook.

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My first post in this thread was to sum up the poorly thought out actions of 4E. I am sure I forgot some. Much of it is, as you say, that I did not care for the game as it was. The focus was entirely wrong for me with a myopic focus on combat. But when I think about what of these decisions made me realize that I wanted nothing to do with it, that honour lies with nuking the Forgotten Realms. Now, it COULD still have been a good thing. Not every irradiated wasteland is uninteresting. The problem was that it was deeply and truly incompetently done. They killed off every NPC that wasn't an elf with the time jump. They cut out whole areas of map, usually into bottomless pits. They messed up several of the deities for no sensible reason (forced marriages, really???). They even killed Mystra despite releasing a trilogy of hardback adventures recently that let the PCs learn that plot! They put in new stuff too! Dragonborn! Yay... A whole new continent of dragon stuff. I never understood why they wanted to add Krynn to the setting. Everything was turned into points of light. And yet... The areas not destroyed into gaping chasms were virtually unchanged. The towns were in the same place. The roads, rivers and lakes were too, after a hundred years of chaos. So, they sold a campaign guide and a player guide and a single adventure, then didn't touch it for years. I have a seriously difficult time imagining a more incompetent handling of it. They make much about IP and branding... But part of that work is UNDERSTANDING THE BRAND. Trust? Yes, it does become an issue of trust when you release a campaign guide and a player guide for something. Part of why they sell so well is because people assume you intend to keep making products for it. If you do not, all you wanted was a short term money grab.

2 people marked this as a favorite.

Diffan: While your point is not entirely wrong, it is also quite true that those decisions I paraphrased were a large part of the reason for the edition war. I mean, there would have been an outcry whatever they did, but it wouldn't have become impossible to discuss on any major RPG board for years and years without their ample help.

bugleyman wrote:
Sissyl wrote:
It would help if you cut some too...
Fair enough. Can you give me an example of where I've gone too far in this thread? I'm honestly not sure.

Heh. I merely meant that maybe you should cut the quote you made of the text you felt I had said too much in. =)

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Tell you what, let us check the first post of the thread:

Pan wrote:
Many folks have mentioned being turned off/away by WOTC products and/or decisions in the past 5-10 years.

Anything else?

6 people marked this as a favorite.

Really? Scott, is this a matter of your definition "during 4e's initial release" as the very day it was released, then claiming "the business decisions that people are upset about didn't happen during precisely that day"? The breach of trust was a slow affair, over what I would say amounts to a year or so. It was not just one item, one foot bullet, rather it was an operation foot autofire for months.

What a way to go. Let's see if I can improve on it. See, I made sure that syrup is 100 proof. Let me just fire an incendiary round into the napalm mess to take out the closet, the truck, and the entire city block.

*fires, and takes out the popcorn after checking they really are just normal popcorn*

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Gunshot wound? If only... =)

2 people marked this as a favorite.

Okay. =) It would help if you cut some too...

14 people marked this as a favorite.

"Okay, guys, time for 4dventure! Let us focus on tactics and combat only, after all we are trying to attract the MtG and WoW players. Skills? Nah, we just make them a guessing game and call them skill challenges. What else?"
"Well, we could do inspiring monsters?"
"Nah, the bean counters want us to use only copyrightable names, so icefrostchoke elemental is what is going to happen."
"Darnit. How about interesting powers for the PCs?"
"So long as they can only do straight damage, inflict ongoing damage or conditions, or move people around the board. The ninety-year-old focus group doesn't understand more than that. They also think we should have more hotels, free parking and do not pass go."
"Umm.. Okay. I know, we can focus on the IP we already have, like the Forgotten Realms?"
"No, focus groups have said there is too much stuff on it, so we are carpet bombing it with a Spellplague and then a century time jump. The fans are going to love it, by our calculations."
"What calcuations?"
"The ninety-year olds told us."
"Sounds like a tough situation... Computer stuff?"
"Yeah, about that, we really want people to pay every month instead of just once, you know like WoW, so we are going to make this really cool three dimensional dungeon delving system. All the details aren't sorted out yet, but hey, we can still promise it."
"The Paizo guys are REALLY getting fan support nowadays, shouldn't we throw some support their way?"
"Hmmm, no. Let's cancel both mags, and fold it into our monthly scheme. We can even do a cool corporate sketch about four parts of the experience interlocking and supporting each other - the bosses upstairs would really like that."
"But... Cancel? Is that wise?"
"Their fans are our fans. They can't do diddlysquat without legal access to the ruleset."
"Uh, sir... You do know about the OGL?"
"Damn, we... I know, we release a new one, charge five grand for using it and include that those that do never get to publish under the OGL again! I mean, this is the new hot stuff, it has to sell even better than the old stuff, almost no matter what we do."
"What about the website?"
"It still has old pdfs, right? Those will just get pirated, cut them."
"But people have paid for them..."
"Nevermind, we can't let people access old stuff. Bad to compete against yourself."
"You really think the people who paid for the pdfs we are going to cut their access to are the ones who will pirate?"
"You're fired. Pirating is illegal and needs to be punished harshly! What else?"
"Just make a number of clips and tell people how stupid they are for playing as they play now. I am sure that will go down well and shame them into trying our new stuff."

Trust? Yes, I trust them to be what they are.

When playing the old gold box games, I stopped picking up platinum in Secret of the Silver Blades, then gems in Pools of Darkness, since the game did track weight. I still ended up with too many jewels to carry it all.

To be fair, H4 is not necessarily set for level umpty-billion. IIRC, it did include mods that you could use for lvl 20-25 (which is where H3 ends). I have no idea if it really works, though.

And yes, the Mud Sorcerer's Tomb is a homage to ToH, whic handily surpasses the original.

I chop off IHIYC's heels and toes to see if his feet go into a glass slipper. Of course, the wounds keep bleeding due to a combination of super glue, leakage holes and heparin.

Veganism comes with certain nutritional problems that I have found most vegans are actually not clear on. Primarily, vitamin A and B12 are things that become problems. Now, this still takes a while, and ironically, most vegans quit veganism before ending up with deficiencies. So. It obviously is not a practical problem of note... but I don't understand how someone can go vegan without understanding the nitty gritty details.

I hand IHIYC his dirty laundry, the one in the closet which nobody has dared go close to in the years he has been hiding in it. To do this safely requires a hazmat suit, of course.

A while later, it's quite a show to see IHIYC getting... Eaten, probably... By a posse of knickers, socks and a pair of vaguely shirt-looking objects.

*presses the glowing blue button on Krevon's forehead*

*takes cover as the shaped charge makes Krevon's head asplode*


2 people marked this as a favorite.


It is arbitrary. The clues given are screwed up. Most of the stuff is of the amazingly creative No save variety. A lot of it is stupid, such as the sex change and opposite alignment curse. There are three creatures in the entire sorry mess, all at severely different power levels. The entire dungeon is PASTEL, for the love of interior decoration. There are few opportunities for players to use their characters' abilities. The final combat against the demilich is similarly stupid (the thief's only option to do damage is to sling gemstones, which do damage in relation to their value, really Gary? Really?). It feels like a jumble of completely disconnected rooms, which is further reinforced by the fact that big A himself can realistically be taken out efficiently by using a trapped gemstone found two rooms earlier (which thankfully lets the PCs skip the combat with him). I played through it with some friends some time ago, and they looked pretty stunned at it. But its worst crime is that it keeps spawning homage adventures WHERE YOU USUALLY HAVE TO GO THROUGH THE ORIGINAL STINKING PILE OF CRAP AGAIN!!!

There. You can excommunicate me now.

Uses Dictum followed by repeated Order's Wrath on Nurn.

Another vote for where the demiplane spell was originally cast. It is and will remain the place with the closest ties to the demiplane.

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Seconded Mud Sorcerer's Tomb, the Sinister Spire.

I really can't agree with Tomb of Horrors, though. It is rather incomprehensible why people think it is such a great adventure.

Bards aren't weapons. However, monks, barbarians, and for some reason commoners, are.

Catches Scavion by net, then sticks him in a catapult basket along with lots of bozak draconians, and aaaaaaaaaaWAY he goes.

*sticks fingers in ears for the landing*


She reminds me of a quote... "All hail great warlord George W Bush! May he kill every man, woman and child in the Middle East!"

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All in all, it seems the most dangerous phrase from a GM is "are you sure you want to do that?"

Let's see what this scroll does? Summon paladin horde? How interesting. Welcome, boys and girls! Yes, he's your target.

*points at the Fiend Fantastic*

*takes out a bag of popcorn and a pair of binoculars to get a better picture*

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I'm Hiding In Your Closet wrote:

"Groetus hangs in the form of a bloated moon above Pharasma's Boneyard in the Outer Sphere, silently watching. Only the other gods know whether the moon itself is the god, or merely his dwelling place, and they have proven reluctant to discuss the matter. Adventurous folk who have braved the surface of this place are either never heard from again, or are discovered soon after as the newest of the god's insane faithful.[3] It is unknown what role Groetus will play in the End Times."

Hypothesis: Groetus = Second Coming of Aroden.

We got death star

We got death star
We got death star
We got death star

I would go with Lovecraft for this. See, a mere planet is like a grain of sand to some of the forces out there in the darkness. They just aren't very interested in it. So, what the villain does is attract their attention, something that can only be done by fulfilling certain prophecies yadda yadda. If done, the world will be tossed into an entirely different cosmos, surrounded only by void unlit by stars. Bonus points if the heroes get to visit that future somehow to see the few survivors huddling together in the dungeons, safe from the horrors of the surface...

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But remember, atheist scum are the dangerous people. They have no morality, you see.

Honestly, and I apologize in advance if this is not politically correct, isn't the reason there doesn't seem to be a solution to the problem that it is a situation only made possible by large amounts of foreign capital? We like to think in terms of solution by returning to some sort of natural state, but without massive power and money used to prop that situation up, it would never have happened. At its heart is an even more vicious conflict than Ireland (which was certainly nothing to sneeze at, with millions dead and centuries behind it), also made different because the brits were one part of the conflict.

I wish it could be as tsuruki says, but that style of all-out warfare would likely escalate into nuclear war today. And, of course, the cultural war has been going on even longer than the nordic conflicts have, so don't hold your breath, I guess.

Jurassic bard gets shot from about a mile away from a custom-improved elephant rifle. Now... What to do with a dozen tons of fresh meat?

... Barbecue anyone?

1 person marked this as a favorite.

It isn't complicated. "Elfondir was born 114 years ago. Then his parents put him in what is lovingly called the 'moron cocoon' so the absurdly retarded elfling doesn't get in the way before he starts being able to think at around 100 years of age. Fourteen years later, he is ready to adventure!"

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Rovey has always been strawberry shortcake.

...and you thought your kids had social problems in school, more like it.

Yuugasa wrote:

Hehheh, the above might sound like a negative interaction but it really wasn't. That was my family's version of a heartwarming tale of two relatives coming out to each other. I'm honestly not sure what to do next. It's awesome that my mom is Bi and that she is willing to show my wife some lee way in her 'dirty, sinful, life choices' (her actual words) but I'm not really sure if the same will apply to me.

I actually didn't really mean to come out. While I like men a lot having never been in a full relationship with one there are many questions about myself I myself have yet to fully answer. If we start having real open conversations I think my answers will be mostly "I'm not quite sure, let me think about that." which is fine, not very informative though.

Even if my family has a really bad reaction to it (which I'm hoping not, given their only awkward reaction to my wife) I guess it doesn't matter all that much seeing as they already have a pretty low opinion of me for being an atheist. (and all the lack of humanity and morals that entails to them.)

I honestly feel a little lost right now; Is this the beginning of something awesome or just a second checkmark against me on the 'you're an awful person' chart? or both?

Time will tell I guess but I'm definitely ending my day in a very different position than I began it.

Wow... Congrats, I think. It is fascinating that gayness should be a problem at all considering you really are an unrepentant atheist. I mean, people without God can't have any sort of morality, right? :-)

Amateurs. And morons. Seriously, there is a REASON nobody claims it. In all the world, it is THE most useless land available. It... Kind of goes without saying. Ah well, I guess I will have to add it to my list for the scheduled world conquest, but I will be taking it last.

Bwahahahahaaa!!! :-)

So, now CR500Cricket has both a fake one and a real win?

Man, C5C must really LIKE pain.

*pushes another detonator and blows up both the fake and the real win*


...I give up. Sorry.

The next poster will at leat try.

Crap, I can't remember the name. What I can say is that there was an ad about it in Dragon magazine back in the day. It MIGHT have been named after the character, Kai<something>. Also interested if you find something.

*is painted blue and wearing a red wig. The effect is... Questionable*

Bwahahahahaaaa. I am CR500Cricket!!! I am in this thread and you can't get rid of me.


The next poster has discovered something about succubi that UDS might want to know.

Aaaaand push detonator to blow up C5C along with the win.

*sighs softly*

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Bob_Loblaw wrote:
This may not seem like a big deal to some but I went for a walk dressed up all by my lonesome. Sure it was 1 am but it was a mile walk along a road that was busier than I expected. There were no pedestrians but there were plenty of cars. One circled by twice. I got a little nervous but they never stopped. The point is that I did it without anyone there to support me in person. For me, that's a big deal.

You rock!

Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine.

Okay... Horns, fake t$!&, twenty pounds of costume jewelry. No masterpiece, I admit, but meh. You do look like something vaguely femalish dressed as a succubus. We don't have all the budget in the world, ya know?

*picks up Ban hammer and starts stalking #44*

Next poster will interfere in a disastrous way for all involved.

2 people marked this as a favorite.

No, rating systems should be a service to the players, not a sledgehammer against the producers of games. As in, this game has a plot and gameplay that a three-year old can actually handle well. If the game also contains sex and violence, let that be a separate marking (yes/no).

On the subject of not killing. IIRC, the baskian ETA was remarkably skilled at launching operations without killing anyone. And good thing too. After decades of doing this, Baskia was given independence from Spain specifically because of this strategy. It could so easily either have become a bloodbath, or never resulted in anything.

3 people marked this as a favorite.

You can NEVER trust them. They are useless, dangerous and bring only problems. They demand that everyone should adapt to them, and ignore any sort of discourse and understanding. Only raw violence works. Complete excision. A final solution.

Appendixes. Simply can't trust them.

3 people marked this as a favorite.

There is no justification, Lord Snow. It is murder, and it is never okay. However, if you deny a whole population ways of living in peace and relative prosperity, armed resistance WILL happen. This kind of situation can only be resolved from the point of the stronger group - that is Israel, like it or not.

Granted! They instead start showing reruns.

I wish nobody was interested in seeing crappy TV or movies, without obviously destructive stuff like everyone dying.

Oh, my mistake. :)

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