Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Of the Tabletop, and other, lesser varieties.

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Tomlidich the second
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Tomlidich the second » Thu Feb 13, 2014 7:39 pm UTC

Chen wrote:
Tomlidich the second wrote:Being DM, (assuming you are DM) you have alot to think about as far as economics. and, there are many ways to rebalance that.

one instance that comes to mind is when the adventurers came upon a windfall of cash, mountains of it... at level 3. game breaking amounts of cash.

of course, naturally, this amount of cash is cumbersome to keep around, and dangerous because, bandits. So, i invented the idea of an arcane bank. Where all their cash was promptly cleared out. by bandits.


Uh why give the PCs the windfall in the first place if you were just going to take it away.


This was done at a time where our party consisted of 3 DMs switching out at every level up for their respective campain pieces.
Other DM gave a shit ton of gold, because he understands jack-diddly about economies or much of anything money related. (to be fair, it was a dragons horde, and we somehow lucked out in recieving it.)

When it became my turn next, i had to do what was necessary to rebalance everything.
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Gelsamel » Thu Feb 13, 2014 7:59 pm UTC

Why not have people (bandits or the gov't) come after them for the money, or start charging them heaps when they find out they're rich, or anything other than simply taking it away?
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby SecondTalon » Thu Feb 13, 2014 8:26 pm UTC

Or, y'know. Dragon. If Venomscale is dead, Flametounge and Greenswoop are gonna want both a cut of Venomscale's territory AND the hoard. And they'll want it enough to team up if need be.

I have always wondered why Dragons don't go in to banking. Give a farming peasant a loan of 100 gold with the understanding that he'll be back in a decade for 150 gold. 10 years is nothing to a dragon, and a farmer can do a hell of a lot with 100 gold. Get a few dozen farmers or even a village on board - yeah, you're out a fair amount of cash, but at those rates you're making it back and then some, you've got a steady source of food in the form of, I dunno, cattle or something, and you've even got some loyal serfs that'll keep an eye on your territory while you're sleeping.

And charge a premium to keep items safe. After all, who's going to fuck with a dragon just to get some peasant's grandfather's sword that's not even a +2 weapon?
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Gelsamel » Thu Feb 13, 2014 8:34 pm UTC

I don't suggest dragons only because I fucking hate them.

A greedy government looking to tax you or 'claim its rightful ownership' over the coin is more interesting imho.
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Yakk » Thu Feb 13, 2014 9:04 pm UTC

Because that requires keeping track of individual mortals.

While extremely powerful, dragons are not better than modern banks are at tracking down individual people. And even they lose track of people and have to write off debts.

A mere 50% interest on 100 gp over 50 years means that over those 50 years, the dragon has to keep track of the peasant (and his heirs) with over a 66% success rate, more if the recoup rate is lower.

And with the life expectancy of mortals, many such loans are going to outlive the borrower. So now the dragon shows up and says "you guys owe me a bunch of gold". The locals go "huh? Who? What now?" -- Bob the Elder who signed the terms is long dead, and the people who knew him are ancient sods who may or may not know about the deal. Now, the dragon can *enforce* its loan terms on those it can find, but anyone it could enforce its loan terms on, it could have just showed up and bullied into giving cash!

Which means that this technique only works insofar as it makes the targets that the dragon can bully richer, so the dragon can harvest more gold from them. Which means the Dragon needs to do economic management of the local economy in order to increase its output and figure out who deserves cash and who doesn't. As the local economy is all under the Dragon's possible bullying radius, the Dragon does not need to even make loan terms: when the Dragon wants the cash back, he just demands that everyone hand over all of their gold and treasure, and they cannot stop him. So at the front end, the Dragon should simply gift appropriate mortals who will spend the money well and increase the strength of the local economy (which is "owned" by the Dragon, as it is within the Dragons domain).

The Dragon's horde *becomes* the local economy (where local grows with the Dragon's reach).

On the other hand, this strategy is perilous. Eventually all of that wealth attracts heroes and wizards and mortals who can actually threaten the Dragon. And then when the Dragon goes and harvests the bountiful civilization she built to gather treasure for her, the mortals get all angsty and rebellious and upset that the entire civilization only really existed in order to move gold into the Dragon's horde, and the Dragon got tired of the civilization management game and wants to instead start growing interesting shrubbery, so wrapping up this civilization and scattering the mortals and gathering the resulting gold and treasures is this Tuesday's project.
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Ixtellor » Thu Feb 13, 2014 10:09 pm UTC

I assume Dragons are like Beetles. Why don't Beetles dig holes for worms?
It doesn't fit in their psychology even if they have the intelligence to do so.
Why do humans worship Idols today? There are 3 major religions and base case scenario for religious people is that only 2 of them are wrong... again People's psychology is not logical, so I assume the same holds true for dragons.

Or as Grendals mother said "Get gold, and sit on it" (I might be confusing my beowulf mythical creatures, but one of them said it)
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby rmsgrey » Thu Feb 13, 2014 10:17 pm UTC

Quick note because it bugs me - dragons usually have hoards (carefully kept stores of money) rather than hordes (large groups or gangs)

I wouldn't be too quick to write off dragon banking - the main issue would be the economic one - a gold piece is a sizable chunk of money, so not going to be involved in most transactions - and the dragon isn't likely to accept that a hundred smaller coins is just as good...

On the other hand, you can get a long way by requiring more frequent repayments rather than a lump repayment at the end of the term - 3GP per year for every 100GP lent gives you the 50% interest over the 50 years, and gives defaulters much less time to disappear. The inconvenience to the dragon is minimal - turn up once a year to collect the money - and combine it with picking up your regular food order... Or even have the gold loaded onto oxen and save yourself a trip...

Provided you keep up the goodwill with the locals, an arrangement like that could last for centuries - or until the local region runs out of gold...

Something traditional fantasy has never been entirely clear about is why dragons hoard gold in the first place - depending on the reason, owning a sizable share of the local economy may actually be just as good...

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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby clockworkmonk » Fri Feb 14, 2014 3:46 pm UTC

My favorite explanation for dragon behavior has always been the Great Game, where dragons acquire wealth to wager and keep score in a game of social manipulation with other dragons. They are forbidden from taking direct action, and there are a bunch of arcane and archaic rules.
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Tomlidich the second » Fri Feb 14, 2014 5:44 pm UTC

Gelsamel wrote:Why not have people (bandits or the gov't) come after them for the money, or start charging them heaps when they find out they're rich, or anything other than simply taking it away?


It didn't come to mind at the time, and i am fairly new to being a DM

Yakk wrote:Because that requires keeping track of individual mortals.

While extremely powerful, dragons are not better than modern banks are at tracking down individual people. And even they lose track of people and have to write off debts.

A mere 50% interest on 100 gp over 50 years means that over those 50 years, the dragon has to keep track of the peasant (and his heirs) with over a 66% success rate, more if the recoup rate is lower.

And with the life expectancy of mortals, many such loans are going to outlive the borrower. So now the dragon shows up and says "you guys owe me a bunch of gold". The locals go "huh? Who? What now?" -- Bob the Elder who signed the terms is long dead, and the people who knew him are ancient sods who may or may not know about the deal. Now, the dragon can *enforce* its loan terms on those it can find, but anyone it could enforce its loan terms on, it could have just showed up and bullied into giving cash!

Which means that this technique only works insofar as it makes the targets that the dragon can bully richer, so the dragon can harvest more gold from them. Which means the Dragon needs to do economic management of the local economy in order to increase its output and figure out who deserves cash and who doesn't. As the local economy is all under the Dragon's possible bullying radius, the Dragon does not need to even make loan terms: when the Dragon wants the cash back, he just demands that everyone hand over all of their gold and treasure, and they cannot stop him. So at the front end, the Dragon should simply gift appropriate mortals who will spend the money well and increase the strength of the local economy (which is "owned" by the Dragon, as it is within the Dragons domain).

The Dragon's horde *becomes* the local economy (where local grows with the Dragon's reach).

On the other hand, this strategy is perilous. Eventually all of that wealth attracts heroes and wizards and mortals who can actually threaten the Dragon. And then when the Dragon goes and harvests the bountiful civilization she built to gather treasure for her, the mortals get all angsty and rebellious and upset that the entire civilization only really existed in order to move gold into the Dragon's horde, and the Dragon got tired of the civilization management game and wants to instead start growing interesting shrubbery, so wrapping up this civilization and scattering the mortals and gathering the resulting gold and treasures is this Tuesday's project.


Mind if i borrow this? Its super intriguing and gives me an idea for my adventurers next story.
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Yakk » Fri Feb 14, 2014 6:43 pm UTC

Sure.

As an aside, this also explains the tendency for Dragons to go and kick Dwarves out of their caves.

See, the Dragons set the Dwarves up a few thousand years ago as a long term investment strategy to make a bunch of neat toys. Maybe the Dragon that did it passed on the ownership of that particular mountain and mining vein to another Dragon.

Now, the heir shows up and wants to harvest the wealth. The Dwarves, of course, have no idea that the Dragon has always considered the entire Dwarven civilization (and maybe the race itself?) to be a long term investment strategy, and tend to disagree with the Dragon when the Dragon says "move out". So the Dragon has to impose the terms of ownership, wiping out the parts of the Dwarven civilization which do not flee the attack.

The remaining Dwarves are tempted by some other mountain vein and settle in, and are paranoid that the Dragons will come and take what is theirs, little knowing that the new mountain and vein was arranged by, and owned by, some Dragon (maybe the same one).

This leads the Dwarves to believe that 'getting too rich is dangerous', so they avoid displaying wealth (when really, it is about the Dragon finally harvesting the seed they planted, and it is only when the civilization is actually 'too rich' that it becomes worth the bother). Civilizations that fail to prosper also suffer from the Dragon's wrath (wipe the dwarves out and stuff some goblins or kobolds in there, maybe they'll do a better job).

Now, some enterprising Dragon had noticed (a few thousand years ago) that the Humans are good at collecting gold from near and far without even having to mine it! So the Dragon doesn't even *need* to find a mineral rich vein and lure Dwarves to settle there: they just need to produce a merchant class and have those humans engage in trade using gold as their currency. Humans are like Elves in that they don't just directly mine stuff, but unlike Elves they have really short term memories so they are easy to out play century-long games with, and they reproduce faster so when you wipe out a civilization or settlement a new one only takes a few 100 years to appear instead of 1000s.
One of the painful things about our time is that those who feel certainty are stupid, and those with any imagination and understanding are filled with doubt and indecision - BR

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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby rmsgrey » Fri Feb 14, 2014 7:07 pm UTC

You don't even need the original dwarven settlers to have been unaware of the dragon's claim - if a dwarven generation is about a century, and the original lease was for 10,000 years and half the dwarves' treasure at the end of the lease period (with all treasure reverting to the dragon should the dwarves fail to vacate when notified) then that'd be like a 3000 year lease for humans - "I am Ozymandias, King of Kings. Look upon my mortgage ye mighty and despair..."

Particularly if the nature of the deal was a secret (wouldn't want other dragons undercutting you) knowledge of it could well have been lost over the generations...

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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Adacore » Sat Feb 15, 2014 2:14 am UTC

Yeah, then you could foreshadow it with ancient tales, prophecies and the like that foretell some grave disaster upon amassing wealth, but aren't clear on specifics.

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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Gelsamel » Sat Feb 15, 2014 3:28 am UTC

Tomlidich the second wrote:
Gelsamel wrote:Why not have people (bandits or the gov't) come after them for the money, or start charging them heaps when they find out they're rich, or anything other than simply taking it away?


It didn't come to mind at the time, and i am fairly new to being a DM


Others may disagree with me, and if you do please voice your opinion. But I feel like "problems" for the GM are really just chances to introduce more interesting aspects to the game. For instance, big bad wizard which you planned an epic fight for got the building exploded on him? A lot of GMs might just punish the players for that, or just rule that it doesn't work somehow or some magic happens and he ressurects so that the fight still plays out. But that feels cheap to the players, they did all this work and the GM just said "No, wrong" and punished them. Instead think about what carelessly exploding a building and killing the Big Bad would do. Maybe the big bad is the only one who knows how to stop the ritual magic from being completed? There could be a whole adventured based around fixing things that they screwed up by bypassing the boss fight. Maybe the building wasn't a lair, but an important building in a major city, maybe the players are now seen as evil terrorists and are wanted by everyone? Maybe they hire their own group of professionals to go after the PCs? Or maybe some adventurers who are out to get vengence against the PCs for the collateral damage they caused?

In the example you gave, taking all the money away solves your problem, but it might not feel that great for the players (although since they didn't do anything special to get it it probably doesn't matter too much).

But lets think of the same situation, except it was the players doing something really clever that the GM didn't think of that got them all the money. Well just magically zipping the money away doesn't add anything to the game. But if you have people go after them... or have them deal with the logistics of storing/transporting all that money... or have them butt up against the government of the area who desperately needs funds to raise an army, then you've added something to the game rather than simply taken away. Furthermore it's all consequential, instead of just inventing a story whole cloth for the players to experience, they've created their own story via their actions.


So I guess my tip is: Always think of a way of adding things to the game rather than taking things away. Everything the players do can be changed into an opportunity for story and conflict by the GM. So, ESPECIALLY when the players get away with something easy, don't straight up punish the players, use it as an opportunity to add some new conflict/story to the game.
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby gmalivuk » Sat Feb 15, 2014 3:55 am UTC

And if the players end up agreeing to work for the Big Bad you had planned a Big Bad Boss Fight for? Well, in that case you'll probably want to end your session at that point while you think of something to do, but it does make for interesting subsequent possibilities.

(In our case this happened at the end of what was supposed to be a one-off (that ended up running to three sessions), but the GM decided to run a sequel campaign with a new set of good- or neutral-aligned characters who would at some point meet the crew we'd played in the prologue. Had potential, but I think it petered out after only like two or three sessions.)
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby rmsgrey » Sat Feb 15, 2014 3:27 pm UTC

There are several ways of "fixing" it when things go "wrong":

A) Embrace it - abandon your planned developments and see where things end up - depending on how good you are at improvising, you may want to end the session early and pick things up next time after you've had a chance to figure it out, but it'll mean the PCs have real agency in the game world rather than just following the fore-ordained path laid out for them.

B) Tackle it out of game - just sit down with your players and explain that things have gotten out of kilter, and you want to reset some parts of the game - particularly if you're switching back and forth with another GM with a different style, having an upfront agreement that certain things will just quietly disappear while you're running things, and reappear when you hand back can save a lot of drama...

C) Apply in-game "corrections" to get things back on track - which can work in moderation or when done subtly - after a too-large payout, a later adventure requires the adventurers to willingly make great sacrifices - and surrender (a large chunk of) their loot...

D) Abandon the game. Flipping the table is optional.

The last option probably counts as a "failure" option, but sometimes accepting failure is the best choice...

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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby gmalivuk » Sat Feb 15, 2014 8:54 pm UTC

It might piss off players a bit, but you could break the trope of always being able to get your stuff back after you're thrown in prison or otherwise lose your equipment.

Like, have the government or a much larger gang come after them for the money, confiscate their stuff when they're thrown in a dungeon, and then the PCs have to escape the dungeon, but unlike is typically the case in video games, their stuff isn't all just conveniently sitting in a chest on their way out.
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Gelsamel » Sat Feb 15, 2014 10:05 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:It might piss off players a bit, but you could break the trope of always being able to get your stuff back after you're thrown in prison or otherwise lose your equipment.

Like, have the government or a much larger gang come after them for the money, confiscate their stuff when they're thrown in a dungeon, and then the PCs have to escape the dungeon, but unlike is typically the case in video games, their stuff isn't all just conveniently sitting in a chest on their way out.


Could make a good opening to a 'get our shit back' quest that could take them all over the place. "Oh, your equipment was sent to the northern warfront for use by the army" "Oh yeah that, some of that was stolen on the way to the warfront by bandits" etc.
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby rmsgrey » Sat Feb 15, 2014 11:01 pm UTC

Or, of course, you could always play Paranoia for a bit: "Rejoice citizens! The Computer has decreed that KillOZap lasers are now classified Green. All Troubleshooters below Green clearance please turn in your KillOZap lasers and report for Termination. Have a nice daycycle!"

More seriously, an undercover or infiltration campaign would give you plenty of excuses for limiting equipment etc - either the insertion method doesn't include the extra gear, or gear is provided by the Agency on a per-mission basis.

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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Gelsamel » Sat Feb 15, 2014 11:02 pm UTC

rmsgrey wrote:Or, of course, you could always play Paranoia for a bit: "Rejoice citizens! The Computer has decreed that KillOZap lasers are now classified Green. All Troubleshooters below Green clearance please turn in your KillOZap lasers and report for Termination. Have a nice daycycle!"

More seriously, an undercover or infiltration campaign would give you plenty of excuses for limiting equipment etc - either the insertion method doesn't include the extra gear, or gear is provided by the Agency on a per-mission basis.


Or even simply that gear will give you off. They don't use that type of weapon there, it's not standard issue for the uniform, etc.
"Give up here?"
- > No
"Do you accept defeat?"
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"Do you think games are silly little things?"
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"Do you admit there is no meaning to this world?"
- > No

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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Gelsamel » Sun Feb 16, 2014 11:08 am UTC

People here might be interested in this:
http://inkarnate.com/

While I'm more interested in the map maker, the character creator is also cool. If the tools are easily moddable then they could end up being very powerful tools.
"Give up here?"
- > No
"Do you accept defeat?"
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"Do you think games are silly little things?"
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"Is it all pointless?"
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"Do you admit there is no meaning to this world?"
- > No

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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Tomlidich the second » Wed Feb 19, 2014 7:45 pm UTC

Gelsamel wrote:Others may disagree with me, and if you do please voice your opinion. But I feel like "problems" for the GM are really just chances to introduce more interesting aspects to the game. For instance, big bad wizard which you planned an epic fight for got the building exploded on him? A lot of GMs might just punish the players for that, or just rule that it doesn't work somehow or some magic happens and he ressurects so that the fight still plays out. But that feels cheap to the players, they did all this work and the GM just said "No, wrong" and punished them. Instead think about what carelessly exploding a building and killing the Big Bad would do. Maybe the big bad is the only one who knows how to stop the ritual magic from being completed? There could be a whole adventured based around fixing things that they screwed up by bypassing the boss fight. Maybe the building wasn't a lair, but an important building in a major city, maybe the players are now seen as evil terrorists and are wanted by everyone? Maybe they hire their own group of professionals to go after the PCs? Or maybe some adventurers who are out to get vengence against the PCs for the collateral damage they caused?

In the example you gave, taking all the money away solves your problem, but it might not feel that great for the players (although since they didn't do anything special to get it it probably doesn't matter too much).

But lets think of the same situation, except it was the players doing something really clever that the GM didn't think of that got them all the money. Well just magically zipping the money away doesn't add anything to the game. But if you have people go after them... or have them deal with the logistics of storing/transporting all that money... or have them butt up against the government of the area who desperately needs funds to raise an army, then you've added something to the game rather than simply taken away. Furthermore it's all consequential, instead of just inventing a story whole cloth for the players to experience, they've created their own story via their actions.


So I guess my tip is: Always think of a way of adding things to the game rather than taking things away. Everything the players do can be changed into an opportunity for story and conflict by the GM. So, ESPECIALLY when the players get away with something easy, don't straight up punish the players, use it as an opportunity to add some new conflict/story to the game.

Very well said. I try to make an effort to perform some off the cuff actions to improvise, and trying to improve my skills thereof. this last session i actually forced that on myself: i created an encounter with no set end goal in mind, and an amount of enemies that could not be taken by sheer force.

the group dug up an explosive trap, dropped it on them with a flying mount, and blew them all up in a fiery explosion. they regailed me alot after that saying it was their favorite moment of the entire campaign, so, i felt pretty smug about myself.

Gelsamel wrote:
gmalivuk wrote:It might piss off players a bit, but you could break the trope of always being able to get your stuff back after you're thrown in prison or otherwise lose your equipment.

Like, have the government or a much larger gang come after them for the money, confiscate their stuff when they're thrown in a dungeon, and then the PCs have to escape the dungeon, but unlike is typically the case in video games, their stuff isn't all just conveniently sitting in a chest on their way out.


Could make a good opening to a 'get our shit back' quest that could take them all over the place. "Oh, your equipment was sent to the northern warfront for use by the army" "Oh yeah that, some of that was stolen on the way to the warfront by bandits" etc.

can i use this? I love it.
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Tomlidich the second » Tue Feb 25, 2014 8:28 pm UTC

apologies for double post. but:

provided for your reading pleasure:
Ice-t records d&d audiobook


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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Dauric » Mon Mar 30, 2015 7:58 pm UTC

Anyone out there in Forum-Land played Numenera?

It's a RPG written by Monte Cook (mentioned in the Kickstarter thread I believe), the basic idea is it's a fantasy realm through the lens of Issac Asimov's (in)famous statement about "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic."

You create a character by filling out the blanks in the sentence "I am an <Adjective><Noun> who <verb>. You fill the blanks with specific choices with their own abilities and limitations.

For example in our first game we have a character who's a "Tough Jack(thief) who Fuses Flesh and Steel(cyborg)", and a "Mechanical Nano(wizard) who Wields Power With Precision."

Anyway, I'm curious to see the opinions of anyone who's played it. We've gotten through two sessions and it's definitely a different ruleset than any of us have played before.
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby maybeagnostic » Tue Mar 31, 2015 9:14 am UTC

I joined a Numenera game that unfortunately fell apart three sessions later so I only had a bit of playtime. Overall, I think a good storyteller can tell some really interesting and bizarre stories in the setting (something akin to the Dark Tower series) but I don't think the system does much to encourage that kind of story. We solved almost all of our problems by creative use of cyphers and the consensus in the group was that we either achieve something with a cypher or run away. We only used our characters' abilities when the problem was too unimportant to waste a cypher on.

It is by far the deadliest system I've ever played though. Thanks to the Effort mechanics, any time a character really needs to get into a serious fight, they put themselves in a do-or-die situation. Should you pour all you have into an attack that fails, you've likely left yourself a single hit from death. Also, the way you can buy both character progression and rerolls with experience points leads to some strange situation where players who roll poorly end up having their characters progress slower. In just a three session game we ended up with quite the disparity- one player had to spend 7 out of 10 xp points on rerolls to save their character while a few others got by without spending any at all. Maybe it is supposed to even out over time but as you drop a tier behind the others, you are immediately put at a big disadvantage so I am worried it might spiral out of control.
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Dauric » Tue Mar 31, 2015 2:09 pm UTC

maybeagnostic wrote:Also, the way you can buy both character progression and rerolls with experience points leads to some strange situation where players who roll poorly end up having their characters progress slower. In just a three session game we ended up with quite the disparity- one player had to spend 7 out of 10 xp points on rerolls to save their character while a few others got by without spending any at all. Maybe it is supposed to even out over time but as you drop a tier behind the others, you are immediately put at a big disadvantage so I am worried it might spiral out of control.


I think this is actually supposed to be evened out by the mechanic where you can spend an XP on -any- reroll, even if it's not your own. In our second session one player was repeatedly in a position where the Intrusions were most appropriate on him, so he was racking up the intrusion XP, but he was also spending his own xp on re-rolls for another player we appended "wan-"to his name because he kept rolling ones.

Of course this is dependent on a team-play mindset, not a "well, sucks to be you" mindset, which varies from group to group.
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby maybeagnostic » Wed Apr 01, 2015 7:12 am UTC

Well, the rest of the group ended up each donating a point each to help the other player catch up and there are other mechanics (like creating temporary advantages for 2 or 3 xp) that can bring someone with extra xp back in line with the rest of the group while making their character better for a short time. It's still a strange dynamic and I think FATE does something similar thing much better. Then again I haven't actually managed to convince anyone to play FATE with me yet so I am not sure how this system works out there.

Also, it was the first Numenera game for everyone and the GM wasn't used to handing out intrusions. I think we only had a total of two in the three sessions I played.
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Dauric » Wed Apr 01, 2015 12:25 pm UTC

GM Intrusions definitely take some getting used to, I know i need to use them a bit more evenly than I was, and I can think of a few that probably should have been one intrusion rather than multiple ones.
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby rmsgrey » Thu Apr 16, 2015 9:22 pm UTC

Dauric wrote:Anyone out there in Forum-Land played Numenera?

It's a RPG written by Monte Cook (mentioned in the Kickstarter thread I believe), the basic idea is it's a fantasy realm through the lens of Issac Asimov's (in)famous statement about "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic."


There's also supposed to be a videogame in the works using the system as a spiritual successor to Planescape: Torment (Kickstarter: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/in ... escription ). Original planned release date was late last year, but development continues (or at least Kickstarter updates continue to show up)

And the bit about being indistinguishable from magic is usually attributed to Arthur C Clarke as Clarke's Third Law, due to his having written it...

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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby maybeagnostic » Fri Apr 17, 2015 9:36 am UTC

It's past the original intended release date? Huh, the kickstarter updates so far have given me the impression that the game is far from finished.
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Krealr » Fri Apr 17, 2015 3:53 pm UTC

I wouldn't really say it's past the original release date. That was the date they put on kickstarter, because they have to have a date. Then they ended up with over 4 and half times as much money as they were asking for and realized it would take a lot longer. I don't recall any updates since the kickstarter actually ended that ever said they expected to be done by now.

EDIT:

I did find a reference to the "first half" of 2015 release date being pushed back to 4th quarter 2015 neither of those has passed yet.

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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Tyndmyr » Fri Apr 17, 2015 6:40 pm UTC

Krealr wrote:I did find a reference to the "first half" of 2015 release date being pushed back to 4th quarter 2015 neither of those has passed yet.


I assume if they pushed back to fourth quarter, that means first half is right out.

But date slippage happens a lot with Kickstarters. Size isn't usually the cause, directly. Not for stuff like this. You're not hand copying those books, they're coming off a press in china. Sometimes folks get carried away with promising extras, though. Or it's just the usual schedule risks. Happens.

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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Dauric » Fri Apr 17, 2015 6:57 pm UTC

Krealr wrote:I wouldn't really say it's past the original release date. That was the date they put on kickstarter, because they have to have a date. Then they ended up with over 4 and half times as much money as they were asking for and realized it would take a lot longer. I don't recall any updates since the kickstarter actually ended that ever said they expected to be done by now.

EDIT:

I did find a reference to the "first half" of 2015 release date being pushed back to 4th quarter 2015 neither of those has passed yet.


Pretty much every one of their Stretch Goals was additional content, so making every stretch goal to the point they had to effectively say "Enough already, we can't add any more stretch goals" meant development was going to take a very long time.

And I don't know why I thought it was Asimov, yeah, Arthur C. Clarke.
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby SuperJedi224 » Tue Apr 21, 2015 12:56 pm UTC

I'm currently participating in a D&D campaign, my character is a level 4 High Elf Champion. He recently got a magic ice sword.
An extra +1 to hit (all things considered, I get a grand total of +7), a d6 of cold damage in addition to the basic d8/d10 slashing damage, resistance to fire damage, and the ability to extinguish all non-magical fires within 30 feet upon drawing it. It's pretty useful so far, though I haven't had any need for that last ability yet.
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby maybeagnostic » Wed Apr 22, 2015 12:58 pm UTC

So I got press ganged into GMing a one shot adventure in The Dresden Chronicles. None of us have used the system before although I've read FATE Core a while back. Does anyone have any experience with the game? Any glaring difference from FATE I should be aware of?
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Tyndmyr » Wed Apr 22, 2015 5:03 pm UTC

maybeagnostic wrote:So I got press ganged into GMing a one shot adventure in The Dresden Chronicles. None of us have used the system before although I've read FATE Core a while back. Does anyone have any experience with the game? Any glaring difference from FATE I should be aware of?


One shot is a bit interesting, usually, the first session is shared world-building. Gonna stick with the default baltimore setting as listed, or something else?

I've read through the book myself, and talked to people who have run it, but for some reason, have been unable to get an event of it actually firing.

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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby maybeagnostic » Thu Apr 23, 2015 10:09 am UTC

Tyndmyr wrote:One shot is a bit interesting, usually, the first session is shared world-building. Gonna stick with the default baltimore setting as listed, or something else?

We are doing the character generation online (mostly) beforehand. I think we ended up deciding we'll finish the characters (mostly the final two aspects) when we get together and let the game spill into a second session to make up for it.

I am just looking at the city creation chapter right now. So far I haven't seen anything that would require me to use Baltimore or build a whole city for a one shot- all the advice is good for a campaign in a single location but seems overkill for a single adventure. I am thinking I'll have the story take place in a smaller town or rural area with only a few distinguishing features and a couple of "world" aspects (or whatever they are called here, haven't gotten that far).

I am excited to finally be playing something FATE-related. I tried to start a few games before but they all fizzled out after the character creation session.
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby PolakoVoador » Thu Apr 23, 2015 12:54 pm UTC

SuperJedi224 wrote:I'm currently participating in a D&D campaign, my character is a level 4 High Elf Champion. He recently got a magic ice sword.
An extra +1 to hit (all things considered, I get a grand total of +7), a d6 of cold damage in addition to the basic d8/d10 slashing damage, resistance to fire damage, and the ability to extinguish all non-magical fires within 30 feet upon drawing it. It's pretty useful so far, though I haven't had any need for that last ability yet.


Well, you might never need it, but you can always use for style :D

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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Dauric » Fri Apr 24, 2015 4:11 pm UTC

PolakoVoador wrote:
SuperJedi224 wrote:I'm currently participating in a D&D campaign, my character is a level 4 High Elf Champion. He recently got a magic ice sword.
An extra +1 to hit (all things considered, I get a grand total of +7), a d6 of cold damage in addition to the basic d8/d10 slashing damage, resistance to fire damage, and the ability to extinguish all non-magical fires within 30 feet upon drawing it. It's pretty useful so far, though I haven't had any need for that last ability yet.


Well, you might never need it, but you can always use for style :D


Have a friend covertly set fire to a small town square. Stride boldly in to the square declaring "I'll handle this!" and draw your sword. Bask in resulting ill-gotten heroic-adoration.
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby SuperJedi224 » Mon Apr 27, 2015 10:37 pm UTC

But in this case, that might be a little out of character (the convincing an ally to covertly start a fire part).

(Which reminds me. I was going to write out a custom feat suggestion for the rogue. I should do that. I wonder if the game master would allow him to use it eventually.)
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Re: Dungeons and Dragons (and other tabletop RPGs)

Postby Totenkindly » Mon Oct 12, 2015 1:41 am UTC

Gelsamel wrote:...I feel like "problems" for the GM are really just chances to introduce more interesting aspects to the game. For instance, big bad wizard which you planned an epic fight for got the building exploded on him? A lot of GMs might just punish the players for that, or just rule that it doesn't work somehow or some magic happens and he ressurects so that the fight still plays out. But that feels cheap to the players, they did all this work and the GM just said "No, wrong" and punished them. Instead think about what carelessly exploding a building and killing the Big Bad would do. Maybe the big bad is the only one who knows how to stop the ritual magic from being completed? There could be a whole adventured based around fixing things that they screwed up by bypassing the boss fight. Maybe the building wasn't a lair, but an important building in a major city, maybe the players are now seen as evil terrorists and are wanted by everyone? Maybe they hire their own group of professionals to go after the PCs? Or maybe some adventurers who are out to get vengence against the PCs for the collateral damage they caused?

In the example you gave, taking all the money away solves your problem, but it might not feel that great for the players (although since they didn't do anything special to get it it probably doesn't matter too much).

But lets think of the same situation, except it was the players doing something really clever that the GM didn't think of that got them all the money. Well just magically zipping the money away doesn't add anything to the game. But if you have people go after them... or have them deal with the logistics of storing/transporting all that money... or have them butt up against the government of the area who desperately needs funds to raise an army, then you've added something to the game rather than simply taken away. Furthermore it's all consequential, instead of just inventing a story whole cloth for the players to experience, they've created their own story via their actions.


Most of my time nowadays is spent in Pathfinder (with a stint in NWoD, which I'd love to get back to at some point), but I've been fortunate to deal with GMs who approach things this way... they give flexibility to the players and will compensate on their end to deal with any unexpected decisions or strategies used by the group. I guess it helps that as players, they're the sort to think outside the box, and this carries over to their GM'ing as well. They usually have some extra ideas of the world around the current session, timelines of what else is going on where and when, and so a deviation from the script isn't really something that messes up the story. I think you described it very well: Rather than it becoming a battle between GM and player, where the GM is limiting options or "taking back things," instead the players actions are used to generate more storylines and likely impacting other NPCs and/or attracting them to getting involved as well.

It's just that the GM has to be the sort who isn't afraid of giving the players some flex, who has done some extra homework on the setting (so he can accommodate deviations), and who has a story that actually offers some flexibility in terms of what the players can do and where they can go at any given time. This seems to get a little crazier at higher levels, especially for the magic-based classes (for example, once a player gets "teleport," then you have to keep this in mind for any challenges within the campaign, and think about how NPCs might seek to deal with that kind of ability). I think one thing we've become aware of as players is that, anything we can do, so can our NPC opposition. So we're more careful... anything we might exploit could easily be exploited against us. It helps keep things in balance.


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