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Steve Geddes's page

Goblin Squad Member. Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Maps Subscriber. 7,876 posts (8,897 including aliases). 12 reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 9 aliases.


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thejeff wrote:
But it's mostly semantics at that point.

It seems like nothing but, to me.

I've been struggling to come up with a consequence for adopting either position (Anzyr's or Scythia's) and I can't think of one beyond how you refer to your game.


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As an accountant, I regularly refuse to work for people who want to do legal things that I'm not comfortable supporting/enabling - I suggest they find another accountant. I dont really see why I shouldnt be allowed to do that (?) I dont think it's relevant if no other accountant will do it either.

Is there a difference between me and the hypothetical barber who doesnt want to cut women's hair (or redheads or whatever personal decision they make)?


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Elrawien Lantherion wrote:
Wouldnt they make more money if they made it more readily available?

Keeping them scarce and using them as an incentive for (predominantly retailers) to order a case may result in lower profit on this specific figure, but probably brings in much more than it loses in increasing sales of the main product (the cases).


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Tacticslion wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:
I disagree. I've always had you pegged as Lawful Wordy.

AHEM.

Tacticslion wrote:

Tacticslion as Enthusiastic Nerd

Probably lawful nerdy. Almost certainly lawful nerdy. If anyone disagrees, <snip> I'll fine you for it. ([b]The cost is one extremely inexpensive PDF. :P)
*Waits expectantly... despite any accuracy the preceding poster may have going for him*

Oh yeah, good point. I'm definitely chaotic (probably neutral with good tendencies). So that fine thing you mentioned...?


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Quark Blast wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:
What's an example of a healthy risk?
A healthy risk is one that, if the gamble fails, situation = status quo.

So what is being risked, in that situation?

I think you're conflating risk and uncertainty.


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Tacticslion wrote:

Tacticslion as Enthusiastic Nerd

Probably lawful nerdy. Almost certainly lawful nerdy. If anyone disagrees, you're wrong. Period.

I disagree. I've always had you pegged as Lawful Wordy.


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Welcome, Jason.

I trust your employee welcome kit included armor spikes for your upcoming battle with the developers. They hate that.


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1. Ultimate plugins combined with Kingdom building AP plugins as one mega tome. (I like big books, I cannot lie).
2. Righteous Crusade AP plugins
3. Pirate AP plugins.

If I can't have number 1, then Kingdom building AP plugins drops off the list (or becomes number 4).


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Sure. If you're a game designer its a good idea to be clear about what sort of game you've produced. (I'd call it bad marketing rather than bad design, personally).

However, we were talking about gamers offering their opinions/preferences - someone who just plays RPGs and has personal preferences is entitled to state them without being held to the same standards of disclosure as a professional publisher (in my view, they're often ignorant of the fact that their preference for realism in particular situations has the effect of creating a power imbalance between the mundane/magical classes - you can hardly disclose what you don't know).


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BigDTBone wrote:
It is terrible design. Because 7 levels ago his weakling buddy wiggled his fingers and scurried up that wall faster than anyone could possibly achieve. In the subsequent 7 levels that weakling has started shaping reality to his own whims. Whereas, the fighter still can't climb the wall. That is bad design.

Not if your aim is to design a game where magic solutions are better than mundane ones.

Quote:
You may be willing to accept it in the system because you admittedly don't play mid or high level games. You really aren't in a position to comment on how the system behaves if you haven't played it

Which is why I just accepted your characterisation of it without question, plus spelled out the limits of my experience with the relevant parts of pathfinder. I'm not commenting on a system, I'm commenting on the fact that people want different things out of games - what some consider "good" design, others will declare "terrible".

Quote:
and have no basis for your claims on sound design.

Nonsense. You don't have to know anything about pathfinder to make a claim about what constitutes good game design. What a silly thing to say.

My claim was that someone may desire realism as a general principle and yet be willing to ignore the unrealistic nature of hit points whilst preferring realistic limits on climbing - all without advocating bad design. I don't need to have heard of pathfinder to make that claim, I just need to read the posts of people who believe that.

"Bad design" depends on what kind of game you want to design - balance between mundane and magical classes is important to many but not to all. Realism is important to some but not to all. Which of those should be preferred in cases of conflict is not an objective matter.


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BigDTBone wrote:
The problem with that is the idea of what "really could happen," is based on what we believe humans "could do" in our world. Which is all well and good up to about 4th level. At 10th level the fighter should be so badass that he can dig his fingers into solid granite and scale the 200 ft wall in a matter of minutes. Because he is more than twice as awesome as anyone on earth has ever been.

He's more awesome based on physical punishment he can take - or various other mechanically derived limits, presumably - I've never survived to tenth level in PF, so I wouldn't know. :)

Again though, someone may be quite happy with those other superhuman feats but baulk at "unrealistic" rock climbing. Verisimilitude is not some measured on some objectively determined scale - some things slip by unnoticed, or at least accepted. Others make us stop and go "No way! That's just silly!" There's nothing inherently forcing one to accept some superhuman ability purely because you've previously accepted a different one. Maybe the fantasy reality is like ours in some ways and not in others - what "feels right" is always going to be subjective.

For example, hit points and group-allocated experience points jar for me. Any system with those in it always seems arbitrary and unrealistic. I can't claim that they "should" be abandoned though - merely that I prefer it if they are.

Similarly, the mega damage vs mega climbing issue you point to here might seem "the same" to you - in that, having accepted a fighter falling 200 feet you feel comfortable accepting he's able to gouge granite (I'm reasonably comfortable with that account myself, I think). That doesn't mean the rock climber who accepts the first for simplification reasons but discards the latter on realism reasons is wrong (nor guilty of supporting "bad design").


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BigDTBone wrote:

But it isn't just magic, for example: my example.

My fighter can fall 200 feet off a wall and stand up instantly. But the fighter can't climb back up that wall because it has a smooth surface. And that is supposed to make sense/be predictable because.... reasons....

It's a good example and many would find it compelling.

Nonetheless, just because one part of the game strikes one as unrealistic but "acceptable" (due to playability, simplicity or whatever), it doesnt follow that unrealistic assumptions/outcomes in another part of the game will also be accepted. Someone could easily accept the unrealistic nature of hit points as a necessary evil (because they recognise the benefits of such simplification) but baulk at mundane creatures in the world performing outside real-world physical limits in areas other than damage.

Standards of verisimilitude and where one draws the line in terms of suspension of disbelief are inherently subjective. There isnt a correct amount of consistency/realism in the rules - different people will require different levels of consistency/realism in different areas of the rules, depending on their personal experiences and predilections.

I think one consequence of that is it tends to reinforce the idea that magic is strictly better than mundane - many would accept "unrealistic" mundane stunts on that basis alone. Personally, I prefer systems where magic >> mundane, so that motivation for climbing thousand foot cliffs doesnt carry much weight.


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Ivan Rûski wrote:

Boo to feathered dinosaurs!

In all honesty, I don't have a problem with the mini. It looks fine. Just no matter what science may say, dinosaurs will forever be big lizards in my brain, not overgrown turkeys.

Yeah, me too. I don't see why historical (probable) accuracy should trump cultural prejudice, personally. Dinosaurs with feathers don't look like dinosaurs, no matter what real ones looked like.


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Drejk wrote:
Anyway the actual number is bigger. Those $15m estimate was actually estimate of brick and mortar game stores IIRC, not the whole pen and paper RPG. So after adding digital products, bookstores (which I think weren't part of the survey), and other venues that might have rpgs it should be probably a significantly bigger number (and by significantly I mean a few millions more).

According to the report, it was an estimate of all markets, not just those from game stores.

Having said that, it was predominantly based on interviews with game stores and distributors. Whether they have many contacts within other markets and whether they did a good job extrapolating to the bigger picture is a moot point, but it's still the best we've got available.


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Vic Wertz wrote:
I don't know for sure, but I like to think that the increasing dominance of "nerd culture" and the decline of groups putting forth the "D&D is evil" message have improved things since then, but I can tell you that over the years, Pathfinder has certainly reaped some benefits from *not* being D&D.

Cheers, I hadnt thought of that. The devil-worshipping bit was pretty mild down here and had definitely fizzled out by the 90s - you americans are a funny bunch. :p


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CommandoDude wrote:

[I get the feeling you never actually played much 4e. "No one ever dies"? I played 4e for about 2 years, I saw players die, I saw players get close to dying a lot more often - and that's with a system where you can do some really crazy things with item synergy. It is a lot harder to die in 4E, but you certainly aren't anywhere close to being invincible (especially since 4E did away with a lot of super powerful spells casters could use to make themselves ACTUALLY invincible)

And the Wizard being as competent as a Fighter is a feature. 4E actually did what no version of DnD ever did before it, which was eliminate the problem of Linear Warrior Quadratic Wizard.

It sometimes seems obligatory, in any discussion of two completely different RPGs, for someone to opine that 4E sucks. I'm surprised it took that long, to be honest. :/


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sunshadow21 wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:

Again you're focussing on the (economically irrelevant) TTRPG market.

How has their release of computer games changed in the last couple of years that makes you think they've adopted an "upstart" demeanour? Their approach to comics? To novels? What would make a fan of Salvatore's books suddenly think "Gee, these guys are clearly desperate!"?

It may be less relevant than other markets, but the TTRPG is the one they currently have.

I don't think they "have it" at all. I think they lost it when they launched 4E and pathfinder (and, to a lesser extent the OSRIC movement) rose up in response.

There's just not room for much profit as number two (or even a hotly contested number one) roleplaying game. The total market for RPGs in North America was recently estimated at $15m - half of that is a relative pittance when you could rather be competing for a slice of the hundreds of millions of dollars available in board games, miniatures, computer games and other such markets.


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Quote:
Paizo, for all that it lacks the name recognition, is in a far better place business wise. All of their products actively support each other, and they already have almost as much actual current product as WotC in most of the non-tabletop markets that everyone claims that WotC has such a strong advantage.

FWIW, I'm not claiming WotC have an advantage - I'm speaking about D&D as a brand. That has nothing to do with Paizo (in fact, my opinion is that Paizo benefits from the brand strength of D&D).

Speaking about the strength of WotC's business doesnt have to be seen through the prism of "who is better?"


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Katina Mathieson wrote:
If QA Erik is to be believed, the authorization process should be all done!

Better than the old "If Cosmo is to be trusted...".


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When it comes to the attempted murder, I think the character needs a really good reason to not go to the police. It happens all the time in fiction but it doesnt happen all the time in real life and (for me at least) it always presents as a jarring moment in the story - unless there's a really good reason for not trusting in the authorities. Ignoring (or self-policing) the theft is more believable - people tolerate theft all the time.

I dont think I'd consider someone like that a 'real' friend anymore, but it would depend on the nature of the relationship. If all of this stuff was the kind of thing I'd have expected him to tell me, then I'd really doubt the rest of what we'd shared. If we were just friends due to a shared hobby or something then perhaps that would continue.

Dishonesty, particularly to that level, makes friendship difficult. Seeing murder as an acceptable solution to a love-triangle would lead me to suspect sociopathy and makes friendship dangerous.


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sunshadow21 wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:

I guess if you exclude the successful products, they haven't had much success. However, I suspect WotC are using a different metric than you. No doubt Drizzt counts, in their eyes.

It's hard to see why they'd take the approach they seem to be adopting if they shared your view that D&D has failed as a "sustained, consistent" brand over the years.

Except that WotC clearly believes that it has failed as a sustained brand. There's a reason we already see 5E (and why 5E is designed the way it is) and that the novels outside of Drizzt are functionally not there as far as the bottom line is concerned. Even on the movie front, they have started a legal battle to get the license away from someone whose track record with the license is not what WotC and Hasbro were expecting. It's not because of any sustained success, but quite the opposite. Successful brands don't have to essentially hit the reboot button like WotC has had to consistently do throughout their ownership of the brand. To be fair, TSR had the same difficulties; they just chose a different way to try to solve them, with about the same amount of non-success. D&D has always been more successful on a cultural level than a business level.

It's not ignoring the successful products, it's also looking at the less than successful stuff at the same time, and more importantly, the ratio between the two groups. Successful brands have more successes than failures; D&D historically doesn't. The successes it has tend to make very big splashes, and there has been enough interest in the brand for someone, usually not the direct owner of the brand, to make a product that keeps the name alive, which is an admirable feat to be certain, but that's about it. WotC is still basically known to the business world as the maker of Magic, with very few people bothering to notice the small impact that D&D has in actual dollars. Active support for the brand as a whole has been sparse in terms of actual product historically, even with the core tabletop game, as many fans consider many, if not most, of the splat books for both 3rd and 4th edition to be worthless.

You're confusing the brand outside of TTRPGs (which is what we were discussing and where I think WotC's focus is clearly directed) with the brand as TTRPGers see it.

Whether gnomes appear as a core race, whether there is "too much bloat", whether the relase schedule of splatbooks is too fast or too slow, whether there's an OGL, whether you can buy core books as PDFs....
All of these "controversies" are irrlevant to the people who buy the novels, the computer games, the boardgames, the comics, etcetetera.

I suspect the edition churn has negligible impact on how the general public view D&D. No doubt they all think we're still playing the same game we were in the 70s (I further suspect they'd include Pathfinder players in that grouping too).

You focus your attention on the TTRPG as some kind of "core product" but I suspect it's more still there for legacy reasons and as some kind of vague salute to authenticity and legitimacy (there's value in being "the first", "the oldest" and so forth). If you asked WotC what the key offering of their D&D branded product was, I suspect they'd nominate their novels (or possibly their computer games - they also seem to have been doing consistently well over recent years, despite legal brawls with Atari).

Furthermore, the idea that consistently 'hitting the reboot button' is some kind of a sign of weakness in a brand is hard to justify. Colgate is a pretty well known brand of dental products here (I presume they're international). Astonishingly, after all these years, they still find brilliant new innovations in toothbrush design every few months and retire their entire range (which was brilliantly cutting edge twelve months ago) for the next big thing - that hardly means the brand isnt strong. It's one well established way of milking a strong, established brand for all its worth.

I cannot understand how anyone can, with a straight face, say D&D doesnt have a strong brand in the wider non-gamer communtiy. It's pretty much the definition of a strong, persistent brand - it invented an industry and is still going strong thirty/forty years later despite all the evolutions of gaming culture in that time. How well the RPG does is a tiny component of that - no matter how excited we get about where advantage/disadvantage sits on the 'dumbed down to brilliant' scale or what we personally think is an ideal rate of sourcebook production.


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*gasp*

Just got an email that my copies are pending. :)
Nearly there!


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You only need a handful of big successes to be worthwhile. No matter what gamers think of Drizzt, his novels have made the mainstream bestseller lists what? A dozen times? More? How can that be judged "mediocre" success, even if other novels dont sell well - it's not like publishing a new author is particularly expensive.

Same with the computer game or movie "failures" - their artistic merit isnt relevant to commercial success.


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Kthulhu wrote:
I'd make the argument that since the end of the 80s, the brand has always been stronger OUTSIDE the core game. The D&D video games alone are pretty damn popular. And that's ignoring novels, movies, and anything else.

I dont know what the revenue is like, but the comics seem to have been pretty consistently licensed over the years and, although not licensed, the novels must have been valuable. The boardgames sold well too, as I understand it.

It will be interesting to see how the licensed figures do alongside the PF Battles line - it's rare to see such a pure competition of the brands.


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I don't know if it's a big deal for most people or not, and I realise the issue of "moderating" reviews is an area you'd want to tread carefully. Nonetheless, it kind of irritates me when reviewers either get stuck into a book for past actions of the publisher (or because of issues with a different book) or when people "review" a book before it's even come out.

One of the great things about the flag system is one can feel like you've "done something" without getting into an argument with the other side. At the moment, the only way to comment on a review is to reply in the product thread, which is no doubt not an ideal reaction. I'd like to be able to flag a review as either "inappropriate" in some broad way, or as being made without reading the product (and therefore not a review at all, but rather a promotion or endorsement).

As an alternative, would it be possible to "lock" the ability to post reviews until the product exists?


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As a general approach if you're a player who is unsatisfied with the way your game is going, I'd also suggest not thinking of the cause as a "bad GM". I'd approach any discussion from the position of "elements of the game I'd like to see change".

Partly it's to make the complaint easier for them to hear (it's not about them, it's about the game) but it also leaves open the possibility that you might be the source of the problem. No matter which of the above categories you think applies - it's possible that the DM and the rest of the players are on the same page and are enjoying it and that your real problem is that you're playing in an incompatible group. I think that will be easier to diagnose if you dont go in with the assumption that it's a question of DM quality.


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FrodoOf9Fingers wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:
I think turning up to say you're leaving just invites trouble - I'd feel obligated to respond in some way (since you'd taken the trouble to turn up without intending to play) but I dont know that anything I said would be helpful. Caught off guard like that, it might just turn into a bunch of them ganging up on you. If it turns out pleasant and polite - it would have been the same over the phone or via email.

Those are some really good points. Now that you mention it, I have that feeling of going in and pointing out the flaws of their logic. But I really should just leave them in ignorance, they'll have more fun that way. I guess I also feel like trying to prevent them from thinking that I'm leaving because I can't power game in 5e (as if), even though I wasn't power gaming to begin with (at least not in that group).

Only two of them (out of 6) I'm friends with outside of DnD. So maybe a message is the best way to go.

If your plan is to argue your position, I think you're bound to be disappointed (and probably just get more irritated). There's a lot to be said for seeking the moral high ground, but one consequence is you have to give up on a few debates with the other guy getting the last word.

If you leave on the grounds that the group is not for you, it's barely possible they'll feel some regret for perhaps not being as accomodating as they could be. If you leave after a passionate discussion about what "powergaming" is, I suspect they'll consider their suspicions confirmed.

I would put more time into the two you know outside the group - those are the relationships that matter. Personally, I'd speak to them individually.


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I dont see any need to show up, personally. If you see some of them outside of gaming, I'd speak to them individually and explain you werent enjoying the direction it was going. I wouldnt consider it rude if you only see them at game-time though if you just let one of them (presumably the DM) know.

I think turning up to say you're leaving just invites trouble - I'd feel obligated to respond in some way (since you'd taken the trouble to turn up without intending to play) but I dont know that anything I said would be helpful. Caught off guard like that, it might just turn into a bunch of them ganging up on you. If it turns out pleasant and polite - it would have been the same over the phone or via email.


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bugleyman wrote:

First of all, thanks for not accusing me of being a liar -- that is, that I sneak off and play 5E because it's just that good.

Yes, that is a thing that happened.

:)

Even if I found it useful to impute unspoken motive to others' posts, your well known commitment to "the PDF cause" would be enough to dissuade me.

Quote:
Steve Geddes wrote:
Do you think you're representative of the entire market, though?

The entire market? No. More so every day? Absolutely. I'm already 42, but I'm pretty darn sure the printed book will become a niche item -- if not a museum piece -- within my lifetime. WotC leadership is showing all the signs of clinging to a dead business model until the bitter end.

Steve Geddes wrote:
I understand that "no PDF = no buy in" for you, but does that necessarily mean that they're doomed to fail (presuming their goal is purely to keep a foot in the door, not to dominate the TTRPG market)?
It isn't so much that the lack of PDFs will kill them; it's the "we know best" hubris behind it (and the lack of a licensing process, and the C&Ds, etc.). Any number of people have been asking for a PDF/ebook option for years to no avail. Companies which ignore their customers to that extent do so at their peril. Seriously, taking nothing away from Paizo, the TTRPG market was WotC's to lose in 2008, and lose it they did. Spectacularly.

That makes sense - I agree that WotC have effectively conceded the war for TTRPG dominance by abandoning the OGL and an electronic focus. Having said that, I will be interested to see how the "unofficial 5E" products go which are being released through the OGL.

Reading back, I didnt really explain myself terribly well. My query was in the context of Gorbacz's summary above - which I agree with. I think WotC dont really care about "winning ICv2" because that represents gaining the lion's share of a trivial market. As such, I dont see that failing to provide for electronic distribution of the core books is going to "torpedo" this edition, even if it means that a significant number of potential players stick with Pathfinder or other, 21st-century-friendly games.

I think their entire plan rests on selling boardgames, novels, computer games, miniatures, comics, movies, cartoons, television shows, etcetera - I further think that licensing those things is likely to be the modus operandi (barring the ability to leverage some of Hasbro's infrastructure/marketting/supply chain).

Although the fans seem to care deeply, I dont think WotC care very much whether their TTRPG is competitive with other RPG publishers. I think they want to make sure their IP remains 'current' and is generating them some level of profit while they chase the movie/computer game windfall.


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Gorbacz wrote:

But is WotC really interested in D&D books in gaming stores? I doubt so, if they were, they would be putting out books at rate they did in 3e/4e times. I believe 5e is The Placeholder Edition, out there merely to keep the "product zero" alive so that WotC can license the hell out of it and have relatively easy income without all the hassle.

Of course, at this point most retailers are overjoyed, because finally they have The Most Popular P'n'p RPG back on their shelves and the publisher isn't trying to work around them. But what will happen in a while, if D&D release schedule is pretty much "2 super adventures per year, zero splatbooks"?

I think this is definitely their plan. The release of 5E has seen a number of non TTRPG products already - the "one story, multiple ways to experience it" is obviously a thing.

With regard to the (disappointing, to me) release schedule for the TTRPG. There have been some licensed D&D releases beyond the books (minis from Wizkids and cards/screens/maps from gale force nine that I know of). Similarly, there's a handful of 5E compatible products coming out via the ogl.

Perhaps these will also make their way into FLGSs eventually - they may be less of a risk if wotc have a slow and steady release schedule.


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Bluenose wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:

At least you now know what I mean by the modern style of a rule-for-everything.

That's what matters, right?
My objection is to your description of it as a "modern" style, presumably as a contrast with "old school" games which don't try to do so much. I think that's not just wrong, it actively gives people a false impression of how both old and new games are. I'd almost reverse it, in fact.

I'm comfortable with you thinking I'm wrong.


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So presumably your in house publisher has now got lots of free time?

I want another Mona AP instalment! It's been too long.


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DM Under The Bridge wrote:


Came across a charming article about the old days:

http://www.polygon.com/2014/7/14/5898063/the-dice-can-kill-you-why-first-ed ition-ad-d-is-king

What do you think about this and the old ways; before the coming of the new gods and more recent times in gaming?

What do you think about going back to the old ways?

Cheers.

I generally prefer to play all RPGs like that. It requires a decent DM, I suppose, but I'm lucky enough to be in a stable group where the DM's job is seen to enhance the players' fun (rather than to "beat" them) so I've never seen the downside of a system with an emphasis on DM fiat and speedy resolution.

The modern style of a rule-for-everything doesn't hold my attention - there's just too much looking up modifiers and rule subsystems for my taste (together with the inevitable arguments about what those rules actually mean...).


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Okay. I don't really have anything else to say. Perhaps we have such wildly different experiences that we're essentially talking past one another (I don't see kickstarters as encouraging PDFs, but the exact opposite, for example - without crowdfunding we'd have far fewer printed RPG supplements, in my opinion).

Ultimately, I disagree with the premise - it seems to me that kickstarter, indiegogo and the like have been great for TTRPGs overall. My concern is more with fraud or (more relevantly) with the health of the publishers biting off more than they can chew or constructing poorly structured kickstarters.

Things aren't going to go back to the 80s, but that's nothing to do with crowdfunding, in my view - I think crowdfunding is a good, modern solution to a shrinking fan base.


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I didn't want to interrupt their witticisms without warning.
But I figured I could toot and come in.


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"No evil PCs" is a reasonably common agreement/houserule. There's nothing explicitly against it in the written rules though - it's just something a lot of people want to exclude. (We don't generally have any evil PCs at our table). As such, the DM is within his rights, but in my view it should really have been made explicit at the campaign's commencement.

It does seem a draconian approach to change someone's alignment and then require a new PC rather than at least giving them a chance to atone. I guess that's a sign the DM is REALLY firm in his views against evil PCs. At least he gave you warning.


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It's disappointing how ubiquitous multiplayer computer games have become. Aren't there any antisocial teenagers left in the world? :(


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Insapateh wrote:

I've rarely seen an anti-fudger do anything but denounce the practice utterly.

This probably irks me more than the argument itself. The fact that only one side seems prepared to make concessions.

Anzyr's post earlier seemed to garner several favorites from the "anti-fudging" crowd. His point was that those identifying fudging as cheating were speaking to the case where the players either didnt want it to happen or hadnt been consulted. As such it's not that absolutist (other than declaring one position to be somehow "default" if things havent been discussed - I dont really agree with that, but I think whether to fudge or not should be discussed pre-game anyhow, so it's a moot point).

Like you, I was responding to what I thought was an absolutist stance - which was apparently not intended. As I understand it now, everybody actually agrees - fudging is okay if the people at the table think it's okay and it's not okay if the people at the table think it isnt. (There might be minor disagreement as to what to do if you havent talked about it - but the answer "talk about it" will probably suit everyone too).

EDIT: Having said that, I had a fair number of my posts from yesterday removed. I didnt think Ashiel and I were getting particularly heated - but in my experience, the guy saying "How come all my posts were deleted? There wasnt anything bad there!" is generally the guy who doesnt understand what's going on in the thread. :p


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Anzyr wrote:

Let me clarify one thing real quick that I think everyone on the "anti-fudging" side agrees with:

Fudging is fine as you as long you inform your players you will be doing it and they agree to it. It is not badwrongfun to do so.

However, what I think is badwrongfun (because it is objectively so) is fudging without informing your players you will be doing so and without their consent.

The idea of fudging when running a game for people who don't enjoy that is clearly as silly as declaring fudging "cheating" despite the rules of the game advocating it.

My main point of contention (as usual) is people declaring "what I like" as "correct". You may be right that those saying "fudging is cheating and wrong" were actually intending that to be read as "Fudging is wrong if the players don't want the DM to do it. And its cheating if everyone agrees (contrary to the suggestions in the rule book) that the DM will never adjust die rolls and then the DM adjusts die rolls anyhow".

If that's the case, I agree. I didn't get that out of "play another system", "go write a novel", "DMs that fudge are liars and cheats", "fudging is a houserule" and so forth, but perhaps I read to much into the unqualified nature of those statements. Given the statements on fudging in the rules, I can't see how it can be deemed anything other than a legitimate tool open to the DM. That doesn't mean it's right for every table, but where's the rules statement that one should "let the dice fall where they may".

I don't like fudging of any sort (even tactic adjusting, unexpected reinforcements or the lack of such) as a player. That doesn't mean a DM who fudges to keep my PC alive is cheating - they're presumably just misunderstanding what's fun for me.


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Rynjin wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:
Rynjin wrote:
That's like playing Monopoly and follwing the rules "most of the time" but deciding to "fudge" that you rolled 1 extra when you were about to land on Go To Jail because it's not "fun" to be in Jail.
I guess. Or it's like putting a hundred bucks under the board for whoever lands on free parking. If the players prefer that modified rule set, what's the problem?

Wrong.

That is a houserule, an agreed upon CHANGE to the rules that lasts throughout the entire game, and becomes a part of the ruleset. Breaking taht rule is then as bad as breaking any of the others.

What fudging is is BREAKING the rules when it suits you, because the rules have become inconvenient. As my first analogy shows.

I doubt anyone fudges just when it suits them I suspect they fudge when they think it will increase the groups enjoyment. Just like (one interpretation of) the rules tell them to.


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There isn't a "correct" way to play. For you three, the DM fudging rolls would be dishonest and/or would reduce your fun and would therefore be a bad choice. That doesn't mean it's wrong at other tables though.


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Rynjin wrote:
But why bother with rules if you're going to ignore them the moment they determine an outome you don't want?

I don't think anyone advocating fudging is suggesting that. I suspect that most DMs who fudge rolls usually accept the result - but every now and again judge that the group will have more fun if a different result occurs than that dictated by the die roll.

It's not all or nothing - the choice isn't between "accept every result" and "make up whatever you feel like".


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Tacticslion wrote:
Arturus Caeldhon wrote:
P.S.: If there is a bloat in bloat threads, it is because the bloat is getting worse. Duh!
Conclusion does not follow premise. There are too many variables for this simplistic a statement to be made, especially with a condescending "duh" at the end.

FWIW, I thought that was a joke "Duh!" rather than a condescending one.


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Aratrok wrote:
If you fudge rolls, you're essentially invalidating the purpose of using random action resolution in the first place. If you're going to nudge things so that the result you want is the one that happens... stop jerking your players' collective chain and write the novel you really wanted to write.

I suspect the people advocating fudging rolls aren't talking about ensuring they get the outcome they've preordained at all costs. Perhaps they are talking about degrees of fudging - or that it should be limited to specific circumstances, even though most outcomes are left unadjusted. It doesn't follow that because you fudge sometimes as a DM, you are therefore jerking your players' chain and really wanted to write a novel.

I like a real risk of PC death. As such, at our table, PCs sometimes die. However, most of the group like setbacks but not death as a consequence. If they asked me to (and they easily could) I'd be happy to run a game where they didn't die, no matter what I rolled. I wouldn't consider it cheating to do so - even if I had to adjust enemy hit points, critical confirmation checks or damage rolls, from time to time.

To say it's sometimes right for the DM to ignore dice rolls and determine a result by fiat (and that this is, by definition, not cheating) is specifically called out as a legitimate stance to take in the gamemastery guide. There's little point insisting that the DM fudging is cheating and therefore forbidden if doing so means that the people playing the game are going to enjoy it less.


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Wiggz wrote:

Pathfinder

Pathfinder Society
Pathfinder Society Core
Pathfinder Unchained
Beginner Box
Mythic Rules
etc.

I know there has been some concern expressed in the past about bloat, but at least past instances of bloat still all used the same ruleset, right?

Having to parse through all the different rules and alternate rules and options and alternate options and versions and alternate versions to determine what's actually legal in your game and what isn't is actually starting to affect our play. I'm looking at the acceleration and I'm starting to wonder what the end-game looks like...

Whilst I share your preference, I suspect (my perfect world would have been CRB+campaign material) I don't really understand how the existence of those subsets of Pathfinder rules would affect your game?

If you're talking about a home game, don't you just decide "Mythic or not" and perhaps now "Core or Unchained"? How do the various flavors of Pathfinder society come into it (or the existence of the beginner box - which is just core anyway, presented in a simpler way)? There is the matter of which books to include (Ultimate Magic, Ultimate Combat, Advanced Player Guide, Advanced Class Guide, the various player companions,....) but that's been there since day one (do we allow 3.5 material or not?)

In my opinion, while I wish it were otherwise, Pathfinder has always featured bloat. A continually expanding ruleset, with more and more options and ever more niche-y subsystems of the rules (that the DM is supposed to pick-and-choose from) is part of Pathfinder and always has been. I don't think it's ever been portrayed as anything but.


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Arturus Caeldhon wrote:
What other essential conceits do many players and DMs forget when playing this game?

The fact that there aren't any.

If there's one thing we can all learn from the paizo forums, it's that there's a bazillion ways to play the game. No matter what feature/approach/concept you think is essential, non-negotiable, definitely right, incontrovertible, etcetera, etcetera....There's someone else who likes the opposite.

That's only a problem if you're both at the same table.


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I quite enjoy them, though I've never started one.

I don't really mind what the OP's agenda is, what I like about them is that they're so open ended - people offer a wide range of "justifications" for their preferences. If the OP asks about specific features it tends to limit the discussion somewhat.

I'm often struck when people list my negative impressions as the things they like - it both reminds me that there's no right way to play and (occasionally) makes me rethink something.


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What you miss in forum bling, you make up for with enthusiasm and wit.


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Readerbreeder wrote:
Liz Courts wrote:
The Shining Fool wrote:
How many Charter Subscribers were there when it got started?

Zero.

** spoiler omitted **
Literalist! OK, how about this: do you have any information on the original number of Charter subscribers?

Yes.


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Vic Wertz wrote:
Sara Marie wrote:
Reckless wrote:
I'd take a salaried position as official Paizo bartender in lieu of any board title.
We keep putting in a requisition for a coffee/alcohol cart and it keeps getting denied :(
Oh, no, we have one... it's just that it starts at the other end of the building, and always empties out before it gets to you.

Linked, for the convenience of the CS staff.

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