I think Scott is asking for the "burden of proof" rather than "I feel this so that is that". I think we can safety say that legal training is at the root of how and what he posts. For me actually asking for evidence of an opinion/feeling is not being obtuse or argumentative....but that is just my opinion :)
Like John Kretzer (above) played many games, with many magic systems in the dim and distant past before life got in the way.
Why i like Vancian -
1) Depth of choice and flavor. I really like the number of spells and the flavor of spells like Bigbys Hand etc. You could get a similar effect in Rolemaster using the force or air lists (or other systems magic but nothing was like a Bigbys hand spell or magnificent mansion.
2) Resource management. Choosing spells is strategic. Balancing utility, buffing and offense with wands/staves was great and getting caught with my utility "list" in sudden combats made adventures challenging.
3) Made magic special and "big bang". Well until high levels where you were rocking spells and magic items a plenty. It does provide a balancing mechanic on magic, but that balance loses its bite in later levels.
4) Utility spells (related to 1). I do like utility spells that have non combat effects. Rituals in 4E are a halfway house, but i think they need to be made easier to use as we often have to use DM fiat to get players using them regularly. Hopefully 5E will make utility spells easier to use but not fill up adventuring spell slots.
Why I don't like Vancian
1) Miss and gone. I like in 4E that most spells have a miss rider so you don't waste a daily (a vancian cast if you will). I also like MP where if you miss you can at least "re-fire" the spell in the next round until your out of mana. I think 5E should have miss riders if spells are limited slots or a way to 2claim" back spells.
2) Magic, nope i have a shiny dagger. Like Diffan and others I got annoyed throwing daggers or attempting to help my team without magic or just stopping until spells are back. Pathfinder cantrips and 4E at wills are great (in my opinion), minor magic that allows you before the wand/stave arms race to contribute at low levels with the point of your class every encounter; "magic". if 5E brings in feats to do "at will" I will be happy.
3) Awesome COSMIC power (ittle, bitty living space). Some spells in vancian are just so awesome at high levels. i hope they can balance the flavor of these awesome spells with keeping martial characters in 2the game" (an old chestnut I know). Resource limitation via memorisation is not "big enough" maybe a damaging mechanic like above, rounds to cast, or other limits.
Anyway there is my "penny in the pot" as it were!
What is not to like about the stated intentions -
1) Integrate feedback from fans over a long play test to refine a sketched out alpha system, to;
2) get to a point where a group can play any "type" of D&D you like, through switching rules on/off.
If they get to that point I will be more than happy, if not I will carry on with 4E mixed with Paizo's fantastic Golarion and a sprinkling of rules from the Rules Cyclopedia and Ad&D.
(It was a fine moment going up to my parents loft last year and finding a taped up box, unopened for 10+ years. Book on the top of the box had a picture of a knight on horseback fleeing in panic from a huge dragon head. The legend that is the Rules Cyclopedia! Also included in the box AD&D three core books, the Wrath of the Immortals and a collection of well thumbed Mystara Gazeteers, and loads of modules including my fave CM1 Test of the Warlords (which sounds a lot like Kingmaker :))
Missed 3.X so don't have the big emotional investment in those mechanics which some seem to have, so for me its all gravy!
Sunshadow I do not know if you have ever worked with developers...if you have please can you send me the e-mail addresses for all of them you have worked with...if they were that open I could get 2-3 projects done in 2 weeks rather than 2-36 months...
I have never, ever created a functional specification without every I - dotted and every T-crossed. If I stated..."well this bit, well to be honest you can take these guidelines...but its up to the person at the time."...mainly I would get..."REALLY".
Even adding in fuzzy logic, its based on a set of variables (Not even wanting to talk about a new Stochastic model...never seen developers lose the plot on a new project until then.) that have to be defined to the "N'th"...going through (in UK and US, these days) any compliance committee or I imagine game company its what makes the games "rail road" with some easy "divergence"....any RPG rule system apart from the rules will not be coded easily...I just did a search on Baldur Gate, never having played this, and this is seen as the last and greatest 1P experience and on Netherwinter Nights (3E from reviews I have read)the DM experience is good. True it cannot take wishes but what codified system couls..."can create any 8th level or below or effect or do something completely different..to DM fiat." is what I remember wish doing in BECMI; let alone AD&D.
Can we please get away from the video game analogy - it is false, easily provable as such and quite limiting.
One thing - Fallacy.
I am saying we live in a civilisation based on around 25K years of history, correct - no? As such we live in the realms of scientific proof. Not analogy, not opinion...fact! Provable fact. With 8 lines of argument I can prove reality is not real. Any point no. False analogies in a thread saying it is true, "because", blatant "hand wave" logic (from many folks calling out non-simulationist 4E mechanics) silly to be completely honest. As what they state is completely anathema to stated opinion - "mechanic is needed; without that nothing makes sense".
The kids are with the mother-in-law, wife (unfortunately) has gone to bed, foolishness of many of these posts and what I have just written - real.
Stefan Hill wrote:
Apologies, I was mainly worried that the point of my post was lost in the false analogy shenanigans.
I think this has already been said by Steve Geddes, others and in a rambling fashion by myself - but opinion is opinion...arguing over the relative merits of the flavour of brands of crisps/sports teams/RPG's rarely leads anywhere; apart from the "your mama" response. General falsehoods and elitism should be avoided though, just as a matter of politeness. Some of the above posts are very interesting though having missed out on D&D video games and 3E (& most of 2E), it is very informative to read some of the history.
The odd post though, makes me think twice about even writing in these forums. I worry when anyone posts opinion as fact, and a badly phrased false analogy as the way it is. It does make me wonder about the future of RPGs if this is what newcomers researching the hobby get as their first taste of the community. Well my kids at least will get introduced, even though my wife now looks at me as a bit of a geek....the wizard hat I got as a joke from her last Christmas was nice anyway.
Stefan Hill wrote:
Complete agreement. I was RE-stating the obvious to make the point that the analogy between video games and table top RPG's is very, very silly. This probably got mixed up in the rest of the post.
The analogy came about because when it was first released, it was half way seriously marketed in that vein, probably in an effort to draw the MMO crowd, and initial playtests seemed to support it.
That does not stop it being a false analogy. although I wish marketing worked in that way....I would definitely buy Lynx for Men.
Analogy is saying 'A is like B' and is a powerful way of explaining one thing in terms of another. Where it falls down is when A is assumed to be like B in all respects and any attribute or characteristic of B can be unequivocally attributed to A.
The typical fallacy in this is that the comparison is not a good one and creates significant falsehood.
Looking at some of the posts above, 4E mechanics are being attributed to video game design of a "hack n slash" nature. From this the analogy draws the conclusion that 4E cannot generate any roleplaying experience, depth or complexity. This is false.
4E mechanics have borrowed from video games the same may be true of 3E or previous D&D versions.....and amazingly the other way round. It is no bad thing...the use of the analogy to generate negative and false impressions is.
Normally I try to ignore these threads, or just whistle the theme tune to " Different Strokes". They are usually filled with false analogies, opinion on taste and straw man back and forth’s. However I will chime in with a returning RPG-er opinion. This is probably in error and I will be pulled into the 7th circle of hell, to be whipped with celery!
Firstly, when I was reviewing D&D as a game I wanted to pick up again after a 16 year break, the hatred of 4E in blog posts, forums and so-called reviews was pervasive and filled with vitriol. I actually set aside the 4E player handbook (An impulse purchase.) and was filtered by this opinion to Pathfinder.
One Core Rulebook PDF purchase later, I had a MONSTER book that I would have to digest and then explain to a group that has kids/work and no time for system mastery. It looked good, but with no knowledge of 3E I decided to put it aside and return to the digestible 4E. My group of mostly never before RPG players are having a blast every other week with 4E. From reading some of the above posts many of you I would imagine believe we are playing [snipe] Pong without an Atari [/snipe] or something similar. One of the new RPG-er’s has even DM-ed the group through Scott’s 4E conversion of The Skin Saw Murders. We even do that talking in character stuff and interacting with NPC’s in 4E, amazing I know!
My point is the general “slap fest” for 4E is real on the internet; my research saw nothing similar for Pathfinder. Although I have seen some on the WOTC boards mainly on the threads stating why play D&D 4E when Pathfinder is better. Having never played 3E, LG, LFR ,or any of those other acronyms I know nothing about, I cannot comment on comparisons between the system; but the general your game is rubbish, I can do that better in my game, look at me I am so clever and you are not style posts are really…well…annoying. I try not to look, but like a car crash…it draws my eye…damn human nature!
Can't really compare like the Prof (If i can be so bold!) on the differences between 3E and 4E. I came back to D&D after a 16 year break, so no 3E for me, just BECMI and AD&D.
However on DM books to buy I can...
DM's Kit from the Essential line. DM book (softcover), adventure (although not up there with Paizo, it's quite good), counters and screen.
Monster's Vault from the Essential line. Great, great monster book (with the "new" HP and condition ends with fluff!), counters and an adventure (Which I did not like, but that's me!).
Both are box sets, so if you do not like digest paperback books it's the old hardback DMG 1 &/or 2 for 4th ED.
Or just buy a month subscription to DDI and get most of the above in the monster builder, compendium and character builder plus all the Dragon and Dungeon material. It is a roleplaying all you can eat buffet in electronic format! DDI will definitely give you a grounding in whether you want to continue your foray into 4E for the cost of a Paizo PDF.
Jeremy Mac Donald wrote:
An interesting class but one, like all 4E classes made by 3PPs, that suffers from not being in the DDI and therefore not likely to see all that much play.
I think from reading the WOTC forums, entry on Gencon download page and Neverwinter campaign guide "blurb" that this is an official WOTC class, to be included in the Neverwinter campaign setting. So should go in the character builder. That is my understanding anywho.
I like it a lot, although looks like a striker with control secondary, rather than a straight controller. With the Dex add on to at wills, which can be used on a primary or secondary target. Is a preview so could change a bit, although Neverwinter must be sitting in a warehouse so not much if at all.
It might make me buy Neverwinter, which I was not going to, either that or wait for it to hit DDI. I do like full write ups though.
In case any of the 4E crowd on Paizo boards is interested, Bladesinger class preview from Gencon.
Download PDF here.
I actually like it, kind of fixes implement as weapon. I do like they are not adding classes just variants off the chassis of main classes.
High AC and basically reminds me of a BECMI elf, with modern mechanics. Does not look very wizard-ey though as does extra damage on each hit.
Be interesting to see the book for steely retort and arcane strike.
Never had a swordmage in the group so no argghh this is stepping on that classes toes. Just have to finish off Runelords or have a fatality so someone can "character build" one up :)
Really enjoyed this book.
Thought the Barrowhaunts, undead adventurers and Gravelstoke family were very good.
As my group is Golarion based, the Iron Circle has immediately become Cheliax forces and will be passed onto current DM.
Have to agree though that the price to content is high for this product (even on Amazon) and the new design of counters are, well pants, compared with monster vault. I hoped it was just a Shadowfell thing but its carrying on :(
Scott Betts wrote:
Ah my subtle hint worked then :) Really I am sure you are busy doing The Legacy of Fire conversion for your own home group, will do us good to do some playing with the monster builder when we reach volume 5. Will be a long time, some game nights we have to play poker so it was a nice 5 month first volume :)
If you are ever in the UK and London I owe you at least 4-5 Masala Chai's! ;)
Scott Betts wrote:
As long as you don't drink Chai. Then you're dead to me.
A lovely spiced Masala Chai is the king of hot beverages! You and your evil empire of iced coffee favoritism ;)
By the way thanks very much for the Rusty Dragon blog, Runelord conversion notes. Was a god send in running Burnt Offerings for 4E. I have handed over DM duties for The Skinsaw Murders to another of the group and he is using your conversion notes too. Fantastic job, although we are dreading to getting to part 5 where we will have to step up and convert material. The Paizo campaign material is stunning, big fan of the inner sea. Then again I played through my A levels and degree in a Mystara based game.
I am in agreement with lots of the AD&D/BECMI returners here. Both games seem like a continuatuion of D&D. Both are good. No way we will solve the conflict of those who came through the transition from 3. I never played 3.x, but as I stated in a previous post the sheer amount of rules and mechanics was off putting for me to introduce (or even learn myself) to a group with 3 folks out of 6 who had played RPG's, mostly 16-18 years previously.
Vancian* magic compared to powers was a bit of a "this is different" moment but it makes sense. Nearly every player in Ad&D when I played fought to be the one to play the wizard. As well as that having martial exploits, so everyone could do somethinng cool was great.
I suppose what I am saying, in a rambling, in between writing a propsal at work is the D&D and its evolutions are great, Paizo is great and well done us for having a great hobby :)
*Vancian was a term I learned lurking here, as well as MAD, BECMI and all these lovely gamer phrases.
That means yellow and blue are the new black! It is a conspiracy I tell you!;)
Its true though the weird my Starbuck frappuccino is the true iced coffee, compared to your inferior, exactly the same Nero iced coffee with different basic ingredients. You will BURN for saying otherwise!
Both 4E and Pathfinder seem like D&D, even though I have not played Pathfinder only read the Core book. I played Stormbringer, Runequest,Dragon Warriors and others back in the day, as well as AD&D and the boxed sets. The others were fantasy RPGs but were not D&D. 4E is D&D, and true to the spirit, changes to magic included.
That is my opinion but then again I drink tea, not iced coffee :).
I find it interesting that according to the numbers at Black Diamond Games's blog, 4E's numbers are stable while Pathfinders tripled. So 4E is still going strong, and Pathfinder is getting customers from somewhere besides 4E's base.
Perhaps folks are playing both? WOTC has only put out 3 books this year. I know I have picked up a couple of Pathfinder products in the last 6 months, including the stunning campaign guide and inner sea primer. As an evolution of the world's oldest roleplaying game, its not hard to see folks who like 4E picking up Pathfinder as well. The campaign material is so well written and crunch light you could port to any system. I am in a Rise of the Runelords 4E game based on Scott Betts excellent conversion and it's great!
Apologies, Thread jack alert!
Completely off track; I started looking at tabletop RPG's last year, after a 16 year hiatus. Bookshop voucher, new Kindle mean't wandering shelves looking for a reference book. Seeing the 4E PHB and a random, on-spot purchase. After reading I remembered that I missed this "thing" from my youth. A bit of research pushed me to the Paizo site, being proclaimed on all review as the "real D&D". UK shipping mean't I bought the Pathfinder core off Amazon UK. The 500+ tome (with tiny writing) was off putting to say the least and I remembered THAC0 and simpler times, so stuck with 4E. 4E was much easier to introduce as a old/beginner to my fortnightly game night group. From poker we now play 4E and really love the system! As a lurker here I know that can be an offence with some but hey!
However, we want to play Pathfinder as well, but that tome, without 3.5 knowledge really is off putting to 6 40+ year old's with kids and long working weeks.
That's why I am so happy about the beginner box. It's perfect for my group. I really think the beginner box will see another upsurge for Pathfinder. I know we will add it in rotation with 4E and move up to the core book, slowly and using a magnifying glass for the print.