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occamsnailfile
Nov 4, 2007



zamtrios so lonely

Grimey Drawer

The other thing that irks me about the cube is that it looks like it'd be a huge bitch to store. It's wider and taller than normal books since it has to contain all that other junk--I already hate RPG books that feel they need to be a special size or print horizontally or some other physical gimmick and this one is just bloated.

eta: I guess how could he not look like that, really.

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Halloween Jack
Sep 11, 2003

Let your word be "Yes, Yes" or "No, No"; anything more than this comes from the evil one.




Video game nerds will shell out $30+ extra for a fancy box, a strategy guide, a t-shirt, and a cereal box toy, so good on him for trying to get on that gravy train.

I wish Monte's games were more risibly bad. Mostly they are aggressively mediocre. People have been doing a crap job of adding the latest narrative mechanic to their game since the early 90s.

gradenko_2000
Oct 5, 2010

THEE Ukraine

Lipstick Apathy

Speaking of Monte Cook kickstarters:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/montecookgames/numenera-2-discovery-and-destiny

quote:

But Numenera Discovery is not a new edition. We will make virtually no changes to the way the game plays mechanically—and none of those changes affect the way NPCs, creatures, or items like cyphers or artifacts work. We also won’t be making changes to the setting. So if you already play Numenera, your bestiaries, adventures, card decks, character portfolios, and books like Into the Night, Technology Compendium, and Jade Colossus will not be affected by these changes. We will not issue any “second editions” of the existing supporting titles—and if you choose not to get Numenera Discovery, future Numenera supplements will work fine with your existing Numenera corebook. Your ongoing campaign will flow smoothly through the change in corebooks. You will even be able to mix existing characters with those from Numenera Discovery into your game. In fact, the game can be played with both the existing corebook and Numenera Discovery in use at the same game table!

There's a bunch of high-concept "shared community" stuff in the pitch, but I guess that explains why I couldn't find any changes to the rules: there deliberately wasn't any. This is all setting stuff.

unseenlibrarian
Jun 4, 2012

There's only one thing in the mountains that leaves a track like this. The creature of legend that roams the Timberline. My people named him Sasquatch. You call him... Bigfoot.

occamsnailfile posted:

The other thing that irks me about the cube is that it looks like it'd be a huge bitch to store. It's wider and taller than normal books since it has to contain all that other junk--I already hate RPG books that feel they need to be a special size or print horizontally or some other physical gimmick and this one is just bloated.

eta: I guess how could he not look like that, really.

I'm not sure 'Shady vaguely supernatural Snake Oil salesman from a low budget Western' is the look you should go for when pitching a 300 dollar RPG in a box.

Kurieg
Jul 19, 2012

RIP Lutri: 5/19/20-4/2/20
:blizz::gamefreak:


Halloween Jack posted:

Video game nerds will shell out $30+ extra for a fancy box, a strategy guide, a t-shirt, and a cereal box toy, so good on him for trying to get on that gravy train.

Pfft, yeah right who would do that?

Oh... right... that.


But I do think there's a big difference. You don't need the T-Shirt, cereal box toy, and fancy box to play the game in the digital age. The strategy guide is easily replacable as well.

You *need* the $300 fancy box for the baseline play experience with Invisible sun.

occamsnailfile
Nov 4, 2007



zamtrios so lonely

Grimey Drawer

unseenlibrarian posted:

I'm not sure 'Shady vaguely supernatural Snake Oil salesman from a low budget Western' is the look you should go for when pitching a 300 dollar RPG in a box.

I'm not saying it's the right choice, I am just terminally unsurprised.

Strange Matter
Oct 5, 2009

Ask me about Genocide


For some reason the junk inside the Black Cube just makes me think of the System Mastery review of Everway.

Halloween Jack
Sep 11, 2003

Let your word be "Yes, Yes" or "No, No"; anything more than this comes from the evil one.




The mystique that attached itself to Everway is basically what he's going for, yeah.

Strange Matter
Oct 5, 2009

Ask me about Genocide


Leraika posted:



Wouldn't you give this man your money?
Wow, so Monte Cooke is the person that parents in the 80s assumed was teaching their kids how to commune with the devil using DnD.

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

We'll start,
like many good things,
with a bear.


gradenko_2000 posted:

You joke, but there's no shortage of "and then ... he rolled a natural 20! oh man it was the best!" stories across this hobby.

I mean, that's no excuse for the design, but some people genuinely believe that.

Having a dice mechanic that can create dramatic moments is fine, it's half the reason we use dice at all. It's more that locking any interesting mechanics and decisions behind rolling high that sucks.

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 4, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!


Strange Matter posted:

Wow, so Monte Cooke is the person that parents in the 80s assumed was teaching their kids how to commune with the devil using DnD.

That's not Monte Cook, that's Sean K "speculative experiment" Reynolds.

PurpleXVI
Oct 30, 2011

Spewing insults, pissing off all your neighbors, betraying your allies, backing out of treaties and accords, and generally screwing over the global environment?
ALL PART OF MY BRILLIANT STRATEGY!


I have to admit I was incredibly tempted to back Invisible Sun just so I could have it to review, because there's literally NO WAY it isn't a massive, pretentious shitfest. I'd be willing to bet money on it.

But then I realized that I'd be giving these fuckheads my money and the appeal rapidly vanished.

Angrymog
Jan 29, 2012

Really Madcats



PurpleXVI posted:

I have to admit I was incredibly tempted to back Invisible Sun just so I could have it to review, because there's literally NO WAY it isn't a massive, pretentious shitfest. I'd be willing to bet money on it.
I'm sure there'll be second hand copies in.a while

Leraika
Jun 14, 2015

slime time



Alien Rope Burn posted:

That's not Monte Cook, that's Sean K "speculative experiment" Reynolds.

Is it? Woops, my bad.

Bieeanshee
Aug 21, 2000

Not keen on keening.




Grimey Drawer

Angrymog posted:

I'm sure there'll be second hand copies in.a while

I see what you did there.

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

We'll start,
like many good things,
with a bear.


Alien Rope Burn posted:

That's not Monte Cook, that's Sean K "speculative experiment" Reynolds.

The best part about 'feat points' was the awareness that maybe some abilities are worth more than others, combined with the additional confirmation that SKR had no loving clue which ones or why. Didn't it put fuckin Weapon Focus way up there because 'you can always get that +1!'?

OutOfPrint
Apr 9, 2009



Fun Shoe


drat, Monte, that really does look like it's not too difficult to learn. There are only, what, six separate decks of cards?

DalaranJ
Apr 15, 2008

Yosuke will now die for you.


I would be interested in shelling out some to get Invisible Sun for a DM. But I need a promise that they are willing to both do a full F&F of it, and a YouTube unboxing video where they explain in detail why each of the components is dumb.

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 4, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!


Leraika posted:

Is it? Woops, my bad.

Here's Moonte Cook:

Evil Mastermind
Apr 28, 2008



Mors Rattus posted:

In fairness, Blades in the Dark lets you take stress to get bonuses, too, but it does it...actually well?

Sorry I'm behind, but yes, BitD does it well for two reasons:
1) The bonuses matter. It's not "oh, I get to do an extra point of damage", it's stuff like getting extra dice to your pool (Blades is "roll dice, keep the highest" so that's useful), increasing the level of success, narrate a flashback ("Before we went on this mission I paid a guard to leave some emergency weapons here in case I needed them."), even doing something while incapacitated. Everything you can voluntarily take stress for has an impact.
2) When you fill up your stress meter, you're not killed. Instead, you're taken out somehow (knocked unconscious, you break and run, whatever) and get a trauma. Between heists you have the option of going out and working off your traumas, because if you get too many your character loses their poo poo and "dies", but if you play your traumas in-game you get more XP.

In Blades, you can never take a willing point of stress and still be good at what you do, and it ties into an actual risk-reward resource management system. In Numenera, you (which is to say, the fighter) has to take damage to do anything fighter-related.

(Man, if I wasn't so buried in Torg reviews and work I'd love to write up Blades)

Leraika
Jun 14, 2015

slime time



Alien Rope Burn posted:

Here's Moonte Cook:



In my defense, I couldn't imagine someone else wanting to pose with that ridiculous-rear end game.

SirPhoebos
Dec 10, 2007

WELL THAT JUST HAPPENED!

ARB you should include a "recommended reads" for inklesspen's archives. I just got done reading through Hc Svnt Dracones and it was pure-strained :stonklol:.

marshmallow creep
Dec 10, 2008

I've been sitting here for 5 mins trying to think of a joke to make but I just realised the animators of Mass Effect already did it for me



Speaking of the inklesspen archives, I think some posts for the Warhammer core book got mixed up with posts from Night's dark Masters and some stuff got left out because it seemed to jump from gods to vampires very abruptly. Did Night ever get around to review the insanity system besides saying "it's bad?" I have wondered what an alternative mechanic should be.

Angrymog
Jan 29, 2012

Really Madcats



DalaranJ posted:

I would be interested in shelling out some to get Invisible Sun for a DM. But I need a promise that they are willing to both do a full F&F of it, and a YouTube unboxing video where they explain in detail why each of the components is dumb.

I'm tempted to take you up on that, but am in the UK, so shipping would be even more stupid.

Freaking Crumbum
Apr 17, 2003

Too fuck to drunk




Leraika posted:



Wouldn't you give this man your money?


Alien Rope Burn posted:

Here's Moonte Cook:



tbh I'm blown away that neither of these guys looks like a real-life version of the comic book guy from the simpsons. any time I ever imagine what somebody involved in trad games as a business looks like, it's always comic book guy. or maybe the guy that does the art for penny arcade because I recall seeing him on some old 4E D&D webisode thing and he also looked like he was wider than he was tall.

RocknRollaAyatollah
Nov 26, 2008



Lipstick Apathy

OutOfPrint posted:

drat, Monte, that really does look like it's not too difficult to learn. There are only, what, six separate decks of cards?

All the fun of the Arkham/Eldritch Horror board set up experience is now available to your roleplaying group.

Strange Matter
Oct 5, 2009

Ask me about Genocide


Freaking Crumbum posted:

tbh I'm blown away that neither of these guys looks like a real-life version of the comic book guy from the simpsons. any time I ever imagine what somebody involved in trad games as a business looks like, it's always comic book guy. or maybe the guy that does the art for penny arcade because I recall seeing him on some old 4E D&D webisode thing and he also looked like he was wider than he was tall.
I think you're thinking of the writer. The artist is a reedy dude with too many teeth in his mouth. The writer is a stout bald feller.

Compare with the best trad game man, Greg Stolze:

Strange Matter fucked around with this message at 18:41 on Sep 19, 2017

PurpleXVI
Oct 30, 2011

Spewing insults, pissing off all your neighbors, betraying your allies, backing out of treaties and accords, and generally screwing over the global environment?
ALL PART OF MY BRILLIANT STRATEGY!


SirPhoebos posted:

ARB you should include a "recommended reads" for inklesspen's archives. I just got done reading through Hc Svnt Dracones and it was pure-strained :stonklol:.

Maybe just an option for people to upvote reviews in the Inklesspen archive, that'd probably be the easiest way to do a "recommended reads"-list.

Deptfordx
Dec 23, 2013



Freaking Crumbum posted:

tbh I'm blown away that neither of these guys looks like a real-life version of the comic book guy from the simpsons. any time I ever imagine what somebody involved in trad games as a business looks like, it's always comic book guy. or maybe the guy that does the art for penny arcade because I recall seeing him on some old 4E D&D webisode thing and he also looked like he was wider than he was tall.

Strange Matter posted:

I think you're thinking of the writer. The artist is a reedy dude with too many teeth in his mouth. The writer is a stout bald feller.

From the 'wider than he was tall' bit, it's more likely he's thinking of Scott Kurtz of PvP comic fame, who also appeared with the Penny Arcade guys in those things back in the day.

Chernobyl Peace Prize
May 7, 2007

Or later, later's fine.
But now would be good.



PurpleXVI posted:

Maybe just an option for people to upvote reviews in the Inklesspen archive, that'd probably be the easiest way to do a "recommended reads"-list.
I was even thinking a tag system like the lparchive has, for when you want [SCI-FI] [GROSS] [RULES DON'T WORK] to drive what you're going to hateread that day.

Strange Matter
Oct 5, 2009

Ask me about Genocide


Deptfordx posted:

From the 'wider than he was tall' bit, it's more likely he's thinking of Scott Kurtz of PvP comic fame, who also appeared with the Penny Arcade guys in those things back in the day.
Oh, yeah, Scott Kurtz is a human blancmange.

Halloween Jack
Sep 11, 2003

Let your word be "Yes, Yes" or "No, No"; anything more than this comes from the evil one.




PurpleXVI posted:

I have to admit I was incredibly tempted to back Invisible Sun just so I could have it to review, because there's literally NO WAY it isn't a massive, pretentious shitfest.
I have a creeping suspicion that once you get past the big box of crap it's going to be very run-of-the-mill mechanics executed poorly--like, for example, so many 90s games that had a lousy Merits & Flaws system.

It's not so often you find a game where pretense lead to mechanics that are astoundingly bad, like Everlasting letting you bet special points on every combat roll, or Carcosa making you randomly roll literally everything all the time.

Kurieg
Jul 19, 2012

RIP Lutri: 5/19/20-4/2/20
:blizz::gamefreak:


I still remember the 5e preview stream where Mearls personally DMed a game for the PA/PVP crew, and Kurtz's hopes being dashed against the rocks once he discovered he could no longer be a 4e style cleric and spending the rest of the game despondently doodling on a notepad.

Serf
May 5, 2011




Kurieg posted:

I still remember the 5e preview stream where Mearls personally DMed a game for the PA/PVP crew, and Kurtz's hopes being dashed against the rocks once he discovered he could no longer be a 4e style cleric and spending the rest of the game despondently doodling on a notepad.

Lemme tell you, that really didn't instill a lot of hope in the game for me from the beginning.

Deptfordx
Dec 23, 2013



Kurieg posted:

I still remember the 5e preview stream where Mearls personally DMed a game for the PA/PVP crew, and Kurtz's hopes being dashed against the rocks once he discovered he could no longer be a 4e style cleric and spending the rest of the game despondently doodling on a notepad.

Was there really that much difference in cleric gameplay? You're still hitting stuff and casting spells right? I would have thought gameplay for both editions, I'm talking specifically for clerics here, was quite similar. N.b. I'm spitballing here because we skipped 4e as we have a weird setup where half of us are in the room and half of us skype in over the internet. It works suprisingly well, but it does make battlemap and/or figure use impossible, which is kinda a dealbreaker for 4e.

Ratoslov
Feb 15, 2012

Now prepare yourselves! You're the guests of honor at the Greatest Kung Fu Cannibal BBQ Ever!



Deptfordx posted:

Was there really that much difference in cleric gameplay? You're still hitting stuff and casting spells right? I would have thought gameplay for both editions, I'm talking specifically for clerics here, was quite similar. N.b. I'm spitballing here because we skipped 4e as we have a weird setup where half of us are in the room and half of us skype in over the internet. It works suprisingly well, but it does make battlemap and/or figure use impossible, which is kinda a dealbreaker for 4e.

The thing is, that 4e clerics didn't have to choose between hurting the bad guys and helping their allies. Almost all of their attacks were both hurting a dude and helping their bros, and most healing spells were minor actions, so they could waste a dude, give all their buddies a buff to wasting that dude, and also get the bard up off the floor in one round. Previously, you were either helping OR fighting, but not both.

Also, there was a lot of variety in 4e clerics, so you could have a cleric who is constantly on the front line applying their hammer to evil's skulls, or you could have one who stuck around behind the front line and shot a lot of holy lasers and targeting lasers from the back.

Kurieg
Jul 19, 2012

RIP Lutri: 5/19/20-4/2/20
:blizz::gamefreak:


Deptfordx posted:

Was there really that much difference in cleric gameplay? You're still hitting stuff and casting spells right? I would have thought gameplay for both editions, I'm talking specifically for clerics here, was quite similar. N.b. I'm spitballing here because we skipped 4e as we have a weird setup where half of us are in the room and half of us skype in over the internet. It works suprisingly well, but it does make battlemap and/or figure use impossible, which is kinda a dealbreaker for 4e.

in 4e your bread and butter healing abilities were all minor actions, meaning that you could spend your turn healing *and* hitting things, the 5e cleric's "minor action" heal is so poor that it might as well be a waste of a spell slot. So if you want to meaningfully heal someone that's your entire turn.

e: Forgot that 5e brought back MAD for melee clerics, which is something 4e tried to get rid of.

Kurieg fucked around with this message at 20:57 on Sep 19, 2017

DalaranJ
Apr 15, 2008

Yosuke will now die for you.


Also the cleric's minor is an encounter level resource, which isn't a thing spells can be in 5e and that's a pretty big deal.

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

We'll start,
like many good things,
with a bear.


marshmallow creep posted:

Speaking of the inklesspen archives, I think some posts for the Warhammer core book got mixed up with posts from Night's dark Masters and some stuff got left out because it seemed to jump from gods to vampires very abruptly. Did Night ever get around to review the insanity system besides saying "it's bad?" I have wondered what an alternative mechanic should be.

There isn't much more to say about the Insanity mechanic besides 'it's bad'. Part of the problem is that it's a very standard older insanity mechanic, so it's very much 'You gain these crippling penalties or lose control of your PC in various ways', and again: most of them will render a player character very disruptive to a group or unfun to continue playing. And RAW you can gain IP really goddamn fast, especially if you deal with Chaos at all. The funniest part is, you gain these even if you're playing as Chaos: A Chaos PC gains a shitload of insanity every time they mutate or gain Rewards, which means most Chaos PCs are going to become a crippling bundle of phobias and weird compulsions that all come with terrible mechanical penalties. Similarly, the one way to really deal with Insanity is just 'know a Shallyan or a Gold Wizard'. They can both reduce it reasonably easily.

The real problem is how lazy the IP system is. It's a simple crutch to try to give some weight to some of the 'horror' elements in the setting and tries to use the threat of permanent mechanical damage to make things scary, rather than trusting that the situation it's presenting will be horrifying. It just ends up being a cheap shorthand for 'this is supposed to be the scary part'.

I'd just strip insanity as a mechanical concept out of Hams entirely. It's something best left to roleplaying and the tones a player group prefers, rather than something you can easily enforce mechanically in a game that is already trying to be darker in tone, but more towards a heroic or early modern mixed with swords and sorcery vibe. I can play my PC being horrified by discovering the true face of the Athel Loren or the machinations of a mighty vampire lord or whatever just fine without having a tacked on 'roll against being so scared you lose your mind' mechanic.

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wiegieman
Apr 22, 2010

Royalty is a continuous cutting motion




They often ignore Insanity in later systems, in Black Crusade the players are already completely bonkers and the same goes for Dark Eldar in Rogue Trader.

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