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2007-12-13 Sacred Cattle

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Summary: toughts → Balance

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< Tags: [[tag:RPG]] [[tag:thoughts]]

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> Tags: [[tag:RPG]] [[tag:Balance]]


GreyWulf wrote about the top 10 things he wants to change in D&D in issue 4 of Save or Die.

Interesting stuff.

Character Classes – I agree. A change would be nice. Actually I think that all class features could be changed to feats and that would take care of a lot of things. Extra hit-dice are feats, spell casting requires feats, and so on. Not sure about skills. It seems that my players like them.

Vancian Magic – I found that players don’t take well to very flexible magic systems. Somehow their imagination suffers unter stress, I assume. And as I grow older, I’m starting to like irrational peculiar idiosyncratic spell descriptions. Why not. I don’t really care about spell slots, however. The Madrir in Denizens of Avadnu by Inner Circle Games had an interesting spell-sucking mechanic. Every spell was worth a point, and he had a number of spell points available. It seemed to work fine.

Miniatures play – my players seem to like it. I just like to put tokens on a table without a grid in order to visualize where people are. I don’t really care about the counting of squares. That penalizes quicker characters, but that’s ok.

Experience point calculation – yeah, that bugged me when I started with D&D again. But my players seem to like it.

Challenge Rating – going back to hit-dice seems like a good idea. Then again, as long as I don’t have to develop new monsters, I could not care less. As it is, the game requires a lot of work by DMs who want to write their own NPCs and monsters. If you don’t, you’re fine. If you do, I think the time’s not worth it. That’s bad for the hobby, but perhaps it’s also a boon as it keeps authors in business. Interesting thought, that one…

Level Adjustments – all of my games are three core books only, so I can’t comment.

Three books to rule them all – one book is enough! I was sad to see that Burning Wheel requires three books as well. Grrr!

Vague calculations with no rationale – I’m not sure wether a more rational system is going to be any better, because you can fudge either system. And that’s what counts. There are additional points to make about seemingly rational and playtest-confirmed raitional systems and all that, but it doesn’t matter. The ability to fudge remains central.

Changing the demographics of the game – basically this is a point for less rules and more DM fiat. Fine with me. Some of my players love to pour over rule books, however. It’s part of the fun they’re having. What can I say?

Balance at any price – I think I’m fine with an unbalanced system, too. But again, my players are not. They love the idea of characters being “balanced”. They talk about “balanced” and “unbalanced” a lot.

So, what’s the conclusion?

My conclusion is that I seem to share a lot of values with Greywulf. And we’re both DMs. But my players seem to be different. And we’re in this together…

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Summary: Hehe... Actually [[Marco]] has been running a few sessions of /Echoes of Heaven/ by /Final Redoubt Press/ where I played the fighter [[Thorhall]]. . . .

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> ----
> Hehe... Actually [[Marco]] has been running a few sessions of /Echoes of Heaven/ by /Final Redoubt Press/ where I played the fighter [[Thorhall]]. But I think his opinions have not changed. And the campaign is sort-of on hold right now as one of the three players is in Austria. Another player offered to run _Age of Worms_ and bought all the material but moved to Munich recently, so this is not going to happen. And he was also a self-professed storyteller type.
> -- AlexSchroeder 2007-12-13 23:17 UTC


Alex, out of interest, do any of your players GM as well? If they don’t, it might be worth encouraging them to try so they can see both sides of the curtain, as it were. I know at least one player whose attitude to how the game should be played changed after he took up GM’ing. That’s not to say there’s a “right” or “wrong” way; my opinions are, after all, merely my own, and no more or less valid than anyone else’s. It’s good to know we have similar values though :)

We really ought to organise an online game, y’know……….

greywulf 2007-12-13 22:14 UTC


Hehe… Actually Marco has been running a few sessions of Echoes of Heaven by Final Redoubt Press where I played the fighter Thorhall. But I think his opinions have not changed. And the campaign is sort-of on hold right now as one of the three players is in Austria. Another player offered to run Age of Worms and bought all the material but moved to Munich recently, so this is not going to happen. And he was also a self-professed storyteller type.

AlexSchroeder 2007-12-13 23:17 UTC


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