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Sin Spawn

bugleyman's page

RPG Superstar 2013 Star Voter, 2014 Star Voter, 2015 Star Voter. FullStarFullStarFullStar RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Arizona—Chandler. 7,352 posts (7,465 including aliases). 81 reviews. 1 list. No wishlists. 7 Pathfinder Society characters. 15 aliases.


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I would have expected this to be 32x40. I'm very interested in seeing how this folds up.

"4e is about as 'dead and gone' as pathfinder" is patently untrue. Surely there are more fruitful matters to debate?

3 people marked this as a favorite.

The OP is absolutely, unequivocally correct; Pathfinder 2.0 is NOT inevitable. Humanity could be wiped out by an asteroid tomorrow.

But barring any society-shaking event -- or the complete demise of Paizo -- there will eventually be a revision of Pathfinder. Not only does it make business sense, but with 6+ additional years of experience, I'm confident Paizo could make a better game. I do expect, however, that the eventual revision will be along the lines of tightening and clean-up, and to bring some of the better ideas (traits, archetypes, etc.) into the core, rather than a radical departure.

I've often wish for this exact thing...great idea. I'll be buying (at least) two...

*** RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Arizona—Chandler aka bugleyman

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Um, any player can stand up and walk out at any time for any reason. If that player is the GM, either someone else steps up, or there is no game.

Or are we proposing that people be compelled to GM against their will? Actually, that might help solve the problem of not enough GMs for gamedays... :P

*** RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Arizona—Chandler aka bugleyman

andreww wrote:
The most recent scenario with technology stuff in it didnt require people to have the teachnologist feat to interact with technology, you simply got a big bonus to checks if you had the feat.

Correct; which is a much better way to handle it, imo.

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Jaelithe wrote:
Why wouldn't we be able to agree on that? It's self-evident. The existence of God is not contingent on anyone's belief or disbelief.

1. I've had people argue this with me before; and

2. I've found it's safest not to assume anything when it comes to politics or religion. I simply often have to be reminded. :)

TriOmegaZero wrote:
bugleyman wrote:
Wow, I really can't wrap my head around that.
I believe that. You couldn't wrap your head around that TPK either. ;P

Your tears are as the nectar of the Gods.

(see what I did there?)

TriOmegaZero wrote:
bugleyman wrote:
...he can't be real for you, and at the same time not real for me?
Ooo, quantum theology!

Sorry, my IQ falls well short of grasping quantum theory.

TriOmegaZero wrote:
bugleyman wrote:
But unless/until I share whatever experience lead to this belief...

Honestly, the extent of my experience was "Yeah, I'm going to believe this."

So really it's just a choice I made, no different than my choosing to buy a Pathfinder book.

Wow, I really can't wrap my head around that.

When evaluating a claim, I weigh the evidence. If insufficient evidence exists, I reject the claim (barring negation games). I don't see how I could choose to believe in God any more than I could not to believe in molecular theory.

Edit: Changed so as not to seem flippant.

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Jaelithe wrote:
And that remains your opinion, not an indisputable fact.

You're right...such evidence could exist. I'm not entirely sure why no one has shared it if it does, but if and when they do, I'm quite ready to change my position. After all, the prospect of a benevolent, omnipotent deity is really quite appealing.

But I'm curious...can we agree that the existence (or non-existence) of God is a matter of fact, not opinion? That is, God as you envision him either exists, or he doesn't...he can't be real for you, and at the same time not real for me?

1 person marked this as a favorite.
TriOmegaZero wrote:
Pretty much. I choose to believe in a god. I don't believe there is any evidence of such a thing in our world, however. (Which is incidentally why I ignore organized religions and holy books.)

And I respect your right to believe as you do. Nor do I claim I can disprove the existence of an omnipotent god -- such a thing is manifestly impossible.

But unless/until I share whatever experience lead to this belief, I do not -- can not -- share it. Which is why I find attempts to proselytize (which, to be clear is NOT happening in this thread) to be so frustrating.

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Jaelithe wrote:
bugleyman wrote:
To be blunt, I find the whole concept of faith -- belief without empirical evidence -- to be self-evidently antithetical to our progress as a species, especially given what the statistics reveal about the origins of faith.

There's a fundamental difference between "belief without empirical evidence" and 'belief based on empirical evidence you don't accept as valid when others do' and/or 'belief based on revelation to which you have not been privy.'

I appreciate bluntness, if couched with reasonable courtesy—even if I'm not remotely swayed by the logic employed to support it.

"Belief based on revelations to which I have not been privy" is not verifiable by observation, and therefore by definition not empirical. I cannot -- and do not -- deny the possibility of such.

As to the evidence...with apologies, I will not budge. There is no strong empirical case for the existence of God (which frankly, most of the theists whom I respect freely acknowledge).

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Steven T. Helt wrote:
I'm bugged when people think that roleplaying is somehow a meaningful commentary on daily life. It's a hobby.

This. As an atheist, I enjoy playing characters of faith. The clarity afforded by an objectively verifiable personification of good is particularly appealing to me, probably because I do not believe such a thing can exist in the real world.

2 people marked this as a favorite.

To be fair, Jaelithe did allude to atheists being annoyed by bible quotations. Part of our earlier exchange was me attempting to explain why I often find them annoying (they're often implicitly treated as evidence), rather than expressing annoyance or accusing Jaelithe of using them as such in this thread. Forgive me if the distinction seems overly fine, but I do feel my earlier comments are being somewhat mis-characterized.

To be blunt, I do not believe faith is a virtue. Rather, faith -- belief without empirical evidence -- is self-evidently antithetical to our progress as a species, especially given what the statistics reveal about its origin. However, if this thread truly isn't the place for such discussion, can we maybe tone down the rhetoric about the "other side" all around?

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Jaelithe wrote:

Even if you don't consider the Bible authoritative or significant evidence for God's existence, you must nevertheless acknowledge that it speaks directly to the character of a Judeo-Christian's perception of God, which was entirely on point in responding to thejeff's comments.

Thus, it's entirely appropriate and logical to care if only in this context, whether you believe in God or not.

Yup, I got there; I was just riding the slow bus. ;-)

Edit: And I just got your last reply. I really need to start reading threads backwards before replying. :P

1 person marked this as a favorite.
thejeff wrote:
It can certainly be explaining what the doctrine and beliefs are.

Ah...that makes sense.

I need to learn to read in the implied "I believe..." in front of people statements, rather than taking them as some sort of argument.

Jaelithe wrote:

I agree.

Fortunately, I did nothing of the sort. I simply quoted Scripture in answer to a question posed, because it seemed germane. We were discussing the character of God in context, not the question of His existence—so your irritation is, in this case, misplaced.

I'm not actually irritated in this case, because I know you were not explicitly arguing for the existence of God.

I guess I thought was implied in my reply was this: I appreciate that the bible has literary and archaeological value; however, unless we first prove god exists, I see no reason to consider the bible authoritative on matters such as what god does/doesn't expect of us (which I believe you were discussing). In short: You effectively take on the burden of proving god's existence when you start quoting him and expect an atheist to care. :P

But again, we should probably take this to a separate thread (or better yet, PMs) if you want to continue.

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Jaelithe wrote:

Though I don't often do this, because most non-believers find it irritating, I'll answer with a Scriptural quote, Isaiah 1:18:

"'Come now, and let us reason together,' says THE LORD. 'Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be made white as snow.'"

I can't speak for any other non-believers, but I find it irritating because in order for the bible to be divinely inspired (as it claims), we must pre-suppose the existence of god. Using the bible to prove god exists is therefore a necessarily circular argument.

So yeah...I don't think you'll get much traction citing the bible to an atheist. :P

But we've veered way off track for this thread, so I'll excuse myself.

Ceres Cato wrote:

From own experience of my youth: I believed in God, because everybody told me he exists, but I always feared him. He was presented to me as a spiteful, easily angered old man who would put me into hell and generally hate me if I'll touch myself in all the "wrong" places, he'd send thunderstorms if I didn't behave well (I feared thunderstorms) and he would punish me for everything I do wrong. For all eternity and beyond. I feared him and I hated him. So I believed in God but I never worshipped him, opting for staying under the radar and never praying, never going to church, in generally trying to avoid his awareness of me with all possible means.

Wow, what a messed up thing. I'm just glad I'm over it now.

How does one "avoid the awareness" of an omniscient being? :P

I guess I'm presupposing a certain level of rationality (which, in fairness, most of us -- certainly myself included -- didn't possess in our youth).

Jaelithe wrote:

Sure you can, bugleyman. You could despise the way He runs (or doesn't run) things. You could, like many today, find the concept of worshiping another being, even Being Himself, absolutely abhorrent, whether you believe in Him or not. You could just be so preoccupied with rollin' the way you roll that you don't even think about Him other than to acknowledge His existence.

We all have our reasons for what we do. If there's a God, He'll probably have an insight into whether those were valid or complete BS.

Despising the way He runs things means you don't accept His omniscience. Since omniscience is a defining characteristic of what most people in western society mean when they say God, I'd argue that *not* accepting His omniscience fundamentally means that don't believe in God.

But this sounds like a topic for another thread.

Mystically Inclined wrote:
I don't allow the IRS to exist in any of my games. Therefore I don't have to pay taxes in real life.

Begging the question; requires accepting the conclusion (The IRS exists) as a premise. But "The IRS exists because the IRS exists" is not useful, especially for proving your implied analogy.

thejeff wrote:
It's possible to believe in God, but not worship Him. A concept somewhat obscured by the constant use of faith and belief as near synonyms.

Is it really? At least in God in a modern, western sense? Doesn't believing mean accepting the claims of infallibility and omniscience, in which case how could one not worship?

Probably getting off topic, but I'm not sure I can picture how that might work.

Short answer: Because fiction.

Longer answer: Gods in Pathfinder aren't omnipotent or omniscient, side-stepping many of the obvious logical conundrums around free will, etc. inherent in what most modern-day westerners think of as religion (monotheistic; God is infallible and all-powerful). I don't know any atheists who would argue against at least the possibility of advanced, non-terrestrial life existing (or having existed at some point); life which might qualify as divine in a Pathfinder sense.

Liane Merciel wrote:

The second half of Nightglass is pretty close to being a fantasy Western, I suspect. Or at least that's what I was going for. :)

This is only sort of tangentially related, but since it falls under the umbrella of "times when I just can't shut up":

One of my primary goals whenever I do a tie-in book is to try and make the setting as much a part of the story as the characters. There are two reasons for this, mainly: (1) I think that such fiction should help bring the setting alive for players and GMs, and hopefully provide a bunch of useful details about what it would be like to visit that particular corner of the game world (what do people eat? drink? how do they dress? what do they do for fun? what are the social expectations and cultural norms?), so that's always a point I try to emphasize; and (2) a long long time ago I read that a good story should be a story that could not happen anywhere else but in the time and place of its setting, and that idea always stuck with me -- that setting should anchor the characters and shape their responses and therefore, to some extent, drive the plot.

Nightglass, and especially its second half, probably tries to do that more directly than anything else I've written (except maybe for the Dragon Age book, but that was a different thing -- the setting was the story on that one). Whether or not it worked is not for me to decide. But that was the goal.

Please don't take my criticism of Nightglass personally. You have shown not only the tenacity and talent to get your work published -- something I haven't yet managed -- but also the humility and grace to consider the opinions of strangers. My hat is off to you, ma'am. :)

Ravingdork wrote:
A few amateur GMs just didn't know how to handle it and decided to raise hell about it long enough for the developers to take note.

Ah the old "only an (amateur|moron|whiner) -- very clearly in minority -- could possibly not agree with my opinion" gambit. And about such an important topic too.

Stay classy.

John Kretzer wrote:
Everyone is invited...:)

In that case, I'll copy my review of Nightglass:

bugleyman wrote:

I picked this up at the FLGS on a whim, based largely on the author. I loved River King's Road, and found Mrs. Merciel to be a very nice lady when I had the chance to meet her at PaizoCon 2011, so I wanted to love this book. Unfortunately, it was just OK.

The Good:
The book really conveys the feel of living in Nidal -- the horror and desperation of everyday residents, the unconscious self-loathing of the rank-and-file oppressors -- in a very immediate way. The prose is well-constructed, with evocative descriptions and many clever turns of phrase. I commend the author in this respect, and only hope I will someday be capable of this level of craft. Well done!

The Bad:
The work as a whole felt...rushed. Multiple pages were devoted to scenes of little consequence, but other, more important scenes were given little room to breathe. The plot felt disjointed, almost as if there were two books here struggling to get out, but the author couldn't quite decide where she was going. In the end, things didn't really gel into a cohesive whole, leaving the novel less than the sum of its parts.


I don't have much to add, as I haven't re-read the book since wrote the review (I just found this thread). However, I do plan to read Nightblade shortly, so naturally my preference would be that the discussion goes there next. It's all about me, after all. ;)

Oh, neat. Is this a private conversation/group, or is everyone invited?

What they said.

The grid is an abstraction. Don't narrate fights as static, even if in game terms the combatants remain in the same squares. There is plenty of room to move around in those squares. Use it!

*** RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Arizona—Chandler aka bugleyman

Rei wrote:
You do realize every single Finnish person who has interacted with an English-speaker has heard this joke, right? :P

First of all, I'm not sure it actually qualifies as a joke; I have a pun problem.

Second, I did not realize. Sorry for being "that guy."

*** RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Arizona—Chandler aka bugleyman

I only ask to see a character sheet or chronicles if something seems off: A very expensive item on a low level character, suspiciously high bonuses, etc. Most of the time if I question someone's character it is so I understand the mechanics, not because I think they're trying to pull a fast one. Almost every time I do find something amiss, it's an honest mistake.

I did refuse to seat someone for a table once because he had no chronicles and his "character sheet" was a few scrawled lines on a sheet of notepaper. We never saw the player again, which only convinces me more that shenanigans were involved.

*** RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Arizona—Chandler aka bugleyman

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Jukka Särkijärvi wrote:
Incidentally, if someone needs the poems in Finnish, I'll be glad to supply my translation.'re saying you Finnished it? :P

graystone wrote:
How dare they create optional rules that we're paradoxically forced to buy and use to increase some undefinable and subjective bloat! Time to pull out something MORE restrictive than core! Everyone's a human commoner without feats! :P

The author builds a nice, classic straw man. Unfortunately, he then veers into pandering, leaving the work ultimately unsatisfying. Shows promise, but needs to learn to appreciate subtlety. I would be willing to review this author's future trolling.

** (out of *****)

Saldiven wrote:
It's Korean. I don't read/speak the language, but recognize the text. Have no idea what the posts are about, though.

I do; they're about why Paizo should be using CAPTCHAs.

No, CAPTCHAs aren't perfect. But they're better than nothing.

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Alternatively we could acknowledge that bloat and character class power levels are matters of opinion. The world has plenty of real conflict without us inventing more.

Personally I find the idea that Pathfinder doesn't have a bloat problem patently ridiculous. And judging from so-called "conga line of bloat threads" it would appear I'm not the only one.

And yet somehow I'll refrain from passive-aggressively insulting anyone's parentage. Carry on.

5 people marked this as a favorite.

Ah, so now we're being preemptively dismissive of those with whom we disagree. :-/

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I've never been able to get past about episode 5 of Agents of Shield. Daredevil, on the other hand grabbed me from the first episode. Different scope/goals aside, there is much to be said for good storytelling.

BTW, what's wrong with "The Wire with masks?" The Wire is on may critics top ten lists for the best T.V. show of all time. If Daredevil even gets close it will be a first for a comic-book show.

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Never been a Daredevil fan but I'm currently four episodes in and quite impressed. Much better than Arrow or Agents of Shield, in my opinion...just entirely better than I had ever expected.


Lorathorn wrote:
I'm curious to know more about your parting ways with 5th edition.

Read my profile. As others have pointed out, this isn't the place to discuss it.

Back to the topic at hand: For most RPGs which do not rely explicitly and heavily on a grid, I think playability is rooted in expectations and GM skill. If you attempt to duplicate the tactical map experience without a map, you're bound to be frustrated (which is where I believe I went wrong). On the other hand, if you learn to paint a vivid picture in the minds of the players while subtly guiding people away from expecting to grok the exact positioning of every combatant, then I think it can work wonderfully. That is easier said than done, though, especially if everyone at the table -- GM included -- is accustomed to playing with a grid. It's really a whole different mindset.

One of these days I hope to be skilled enough as a GM to provide a compelling experience with something like Dungeon World. But talk about your different mindsets... :)

I own Dungeon World in both PDF and hardcopy, but I'm not sure I grok it well enough to do it justice, especially if I were to try running it for a group accustomed to more "traditional" RPGs (read: Pretty much everyone I know who might be interested).

But man, it looks shiny.

I tried running one combat in 5E with no maps and it didn't go over very well. In hindsight, it was for a group of Pathfinder players, and I don't think any of us were really in the right mindset. In short, I think we were all trying to play using maps without using maps. If that makes any sense. :P

I'd give it another go, but I've parted ways with 5E for unrelated reasons.

2 people marked this as a favorite.

It is basically 5E content packaged for Fantasy Grounds, which is a VTT. My understanding is that there is character generation functionality, as well as in-play support, but it all runs in the context of the VTT.

While it should come in very handy for people running a 5E game in FG, it is neither a stand-alone character generator nor an e-book "solution" (sadly).

2 people marked this as a favorite.

It seems WotC is still committed to proprietary applications over standard file formats.

Unfortunate, but wholly unsurprising at this point. In fact, I'd have been surprised if they'd have gotten it right.


Krunchyfrogg wrote:
Dale McCoy Jr wrote:

My thoughts: I like it.

Now where's some kind of license, any kind of license to produce compatible material. Because Wizards is not coming anywhere close to meeting the demand for adventures, additional crunch, settings, etc.

After Pathfinder became a more successful game than D&D 3.5, do you think WotC is going to let that happen again?

The OGL genie can never be put back in the bottle. At this point all they're doing is making it harder for others to support their game.

But hey, it's Hasbro, so what else would you expect?

*** RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Arizona—Chandler aka bugleyman

Mikko Kallio wrote:

@joe kirner: Not sure if I understood the question correctly, but I'll try to answer:

** spoiler omitted **

That may not have been his question, but it is exactly what I was wondering after my first read-through. So thanks! :)

What kills me is all these recent hires started with RPGs more than twenty years after I did.


14 people marked this as a favorite.

Single Eidolon butt = I'm out. ;-)

6 people marked this as a favorite.

Can we please stop labeling people based on their gaming preferences?

I started playing D&D in '84, yet I rather like 5E's mechanics. That doesn't mean I'm a "newb" or a child, any more than preferring the relative complexity of Pathfinder means you have no life.

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