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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!


inklesspen posted:

I can get you the first two (pretty sure they're both Mors Rattus), but the third one would probably have to be outsourced to some grad students to assign responses to the reviews and classify sentiment. (Also, I bet the "winner" would be PurpleXVI's Chris Fields reviews).

I actually don't think Chris was the one that made people the angriest.

Bliss Stage got people pretty angry due to how loving creepy it was(and because someone disagreed with me about whether it was creepy or whether I was just not getting it ), Wraeththu and the original HSD review made some people froth because of how ignorant they were about biology, causing some migraines. Chris Field mostly just made people despair and go "whyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy."

And speaking of HSD, I got in the final post for the Extended Core in the last thread before this one got made.

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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!


theironjef posted:

Disrepectful, yes. Also, the length of time in these "magic in the real world" games between when players start talking about the spell system and when someone drags Hitler or some serial killer into it is usually measured in seconds. It's so common that a UA Clicheomancer wouldn't even get a minor charge out of it.

I think the worst case of this I saw was Psi-Watch by Chris A. Field, where he tried to make so many atrocities ones caused by his Evil Conspiracy, even loving Bhopal. It genuinely made me angry.

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!


Count Chocula posted:

I don't want to say 'you can't use any real-life atrocity in your horror game', though, mostly because I enjoy things like American Horror Story. New Orleans especially made good use of that. I think the key for me is that it should be REAL LIFE ATROCITY leads to SUPERNATURAL CONSEQUENCES, not the other way around. So Charles Manson wasn't a demon, but what he did messed with reality so much that if you bought his copy of the Beatles' records that inspired him that was recently up for auction you can use it for messed up Unknown Armies magick. On a totally unrelated note, there was just a massive auction of Margaret Thatcher artifacts...

I think that part of the issue with going HITLER WAS A VAMPIRE, 9/11 WAS WIZARDS(because fireballs can melt steel beams) or BHOPAL WAS CAUSED BY THE ILLUMINATI or whatever is that it kind of cheapens the whole thing, turns it into some big, simple atrocity caused by a big, simple evil that needs punching in the snout. Which disguises the lessons that actually need learning from those sorts of events, if anything it's scarier that relatively ordinary people and their human mistakes/motivations can drive them to these extraordinary atrocities. If a dragon did it, it's a lot less spooky and requires far less introspection(and has a much simpler solution).

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!


LatwPIAT posted:

But still, the Traditions were undeniably the protagonists of the setting. The heroes, even, written to be good and in the right, and fighting the good fight. They're the diverse ones full of love and fun, behind Woodstock and the Civil Rights Movement and Rock and Roll and everything 20-somethings in the 90's loved.

See, as much as I dislike Brucato, I can't really find fault with that paragraph you quoted. He's basically just saying that you can treat them as heroes or villains depending on your perspective, which, to me, is at least a breath of fresh air compared to what felt like the pro-Tradition chanting in the older books. I mean, I don't have an issue with unambiguous heroes and good guys in a setting, but when said setting is basically "the real world with wizards added in," it feels like the proper approach is in fact this one: "The good guys depend on who you are and what your ideals are, though there are some obvious bad guys(Nephandi, etc.) to all sides."

And the Technocracy books were just pure comedy, really. On the one hand they tried to present Technocrats as playable and potentially heroic, on the other hand, they had stuff like "when you're above this rank in a particular Technocrat group, they replace your brain with a computer and you stop being a PC, also a demon in charge of a mechanical planet is their boss" and "this particular faction of the Technocrats have canonically thrown in their lot with Cthulhu. lol"

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!


Sgt. Anime Pederast posted:

I kinda legit want to read these books now because this sounds hilarious.

The Technocracy books are largely pretty alright, the Void Engineer one in particular is quite solid. It's just that it's already an extremely schizophrenic game. On the one hand the technocrats are evil... on the other hand they make medicine, computers and microwave ovens work. On the one hand the technocrats have to be playable... on the other hand the Technocracy itself has to be irredeemably corrupt so the Tradition books aren't wrong. And so on. Ultimately their solution was to go "The Technocracy itself is utterly evil and 99% of the people involved are bad, even when their technology is doing good things, it was developed with immoral means. So you can either play a villain or you can be the lone voice of logic while most of the Technocracy is either subsumed by outside entities(PS they basically fund Pentex for ?????? reasons) or their own madness."

It honestly feels like the whole thing would've worked better if there was no word-of-god on who was the good guys and the whole thing was just filled full of unreliable narrators like the oVamp clanbooks were, so people could make up their own minds and grab the plot hooks they liked the most.

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!


Ratpick posted:

I've never played or read any version of Mage. Is it bad that my main take-away from that latest post was "Man, it would be so cool to play a Void Engineer"?

No, that just means you read Mage right.

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!


Evil Mastermind posted:

There's nothing inherently wrong with using random tables for inspiration or to get past a bad case of writer's block. The problem sets in when people start using random tables for everything, using them to replace coming up with stuff on their own.

I don't think that's necessarily bad, no amount of random tables will completely generate a character for you, conceptually. At some point you'll always need to make some connections or add in some explanations(if you don't, then you've certainly found or made the holy grail of random generation), like why your anemic Literature major starts with an RPG-7 and fifty pounds of ham in her inventory or why the town of Townshire has a population of 75% sentient ostriches. The main issue with random gen is when the random generation affects mechanics and isn't balanced, in a lot of systems there's way too much chance of being given an unplayable character OR causing too huge a variance in character power. A game is often less fun if one guy is Superman and the other guy is The Amazing Left Nostril.

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!


Alien Rope Burn posted:

Really, I think the only tenable solution to the Marauder / madness dilemma is to say that Quiet is a magically altered state of mind that doesn't relate to mundane mental illness. The notion that being mentally ill translates into being an antagonist is just a little problematic.

Just a little.

On the other hand, just making it a Magical Badguy Disease kind of ruins it. I mean, having it be mental illness combined with being Awakened isn't actually a bad idea, if handled by anyone who's less of a retard than Brucato. The Nephandi ruin things because they're cockheads, you can blow them up without remorse. Sane opposing Mages ruin things because they believe the wrong stuff, you can try to convert them, or you can blow them up, but either way it's kind of a straight-up fight where everyone knows the stakes and chose to get involved, it's not really a huge moral quandary.

Unlike the other Mages, Marauders might have no idea that they're destroying things around them. They're just perceiving the world as they always are, shattered and weird as it may be, they have no idea that they're the cause of reality acting weird whenever they've got a schizophrenic episode or a depressive fugue. They don't MEAN to ruin anything, or to change anything, in fact, they'd most likely LOVE to be mentally stable. So you can't just go blow them up without feeling like a bit of a prick, but at they same time you can't just let them run rampant either. Do you run untold risks to try and get through to them, to help them calm down, to get medication to them through their warped reality field and, to you, unpredictable and dangerous behavior? Do you callously kill them for being "a threat"? Do you coldly use them as tools, manipulating their mental illness to sic them on your opponents?

Just going "they've got the magical wizard crazy" feels like it wastes a lot of potential dilemmas and roleplaying opportunities by simplifying things too much. It either just makes them into less-organized Nephandi by making them orcs you can kill without remorse(if they're incurable), or if it's got some sort of easy magic cure it further fails to actually take mental illness seriously, and if it's actually a complex illness like real mental illness... I don't see how it actually changes much to make it Wizard Schizophrenia.

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!


Alien Rope Burn posted:

Of course, AFAIK Awakened just dodges this whole question for the most part by excising the Marauders entirely, which is probably the most elegant solution.

The most elegant, yes, but it seems like a shame. The Marauders are actually some of the more interesting and original opponents in Mage. Otherwise you've got other Mages, the generic Cthulhus and other bad super naturals, and Nephandi, which are just Chaotic Evil Mages. Marauders actually do something none of the others do, mechanically, by having their own little Unreality Zone around them.

You also don't need a gritty and perfect simulation of mental illness for it to not be insulting or creepy, just don't treat them like Orcs or Fishmalks and you're golden, giving you some unique opponents with some unique roleplaying opportunities.

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!


Josef bugman posted:

See maybe I am the grognard, but through looking at a lot of this stuff, why on earth did people want/ fall so in love with OWoD? I mean I am only in my 20's so missed a lot of the 90's by being way too young, but when was this stuff good?

I think the best explanation is that they had charm DESPITE all their flaws. Take oVampire, for instance, the system is functional, but deeply unbalanced, and about half of the writing is eye-rolling vampire angst or pretentious trash, but the remaining half never quite takes itself seriously, and is just oozing interesting plot points to latch on to, plus has enough unreliable narrators that you're basically encouraged to pick and choose as a GM who you want to believe, and who you don't want to believe. Which clan has it right about the origins of the Vampire curse? Whichever clan you think has the coolest backstory for the game you're running! It was never exactly good for being the Angst-And-Politics simulator White Wolf seemed to feel it should be, but it was great for being, essentially, light-sensitive superheroes who threw trucks at werewolves.

oMage, similarly, was apparently intended as a Philosophy Debate Simulator, but, in the hands of most people I know, ended up mostly being an excuse to stir up a big pot of pulp fiction and conspiracy theories and then resolving the resulting mess with enough fireballs to glass half the Sahara.

And frankly I never knew anyone who actually ran any of the other oWoD games.

But also it scored a lot of points at the time just for being different. It had less tables to look up than D&D(remember it was 1e and 2e AD&D back then), and aside from all the people who saw the unintended fun in the White Wolf games, there were a lot of people who were desperately hungry for the "secret universe behind our own where you, too, can have awesome powers and get revenge on the jocks!"-fantasy they peddled.

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!


DAD LOST MY IPOD posted:

is brucato the guy who did that setting where America had a red state blue state civil war and the blue states use sex magick and furry gene splices and the red states use power armor and pro life super-soldier teenagers

because that was the worst

That was Otherverse: America, by Chris Field. This was also part of the setting where the universe is ruled by a parsecs-long space penis, and that being able to understand cocks is a prerequisite for sentience. None of this is hyperbole or made up.

Chris Field was also the guy who wrote Black Tokyo. He's a bad person.

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!


occamsnailfile posted:

Most RPGs have you throwing your best resources out first, versus the dramatic trope of 'escalate from jab to strong to fierce to shoryuken'. I mean 13th Age tries with the Escalation Die and people mentioned TBZ and doesn't Double Cross also do something like that with your virus level? But it's hard to do 'nothing is truly effective until NARRATIVE FIAT happens' spontaneously. For one thing, you have to have players who are able to think dramatically beyond "I get even ANGRIER." I suppose when I've had fights that were 'exciting' from a mechanical rather than narrative standpoint, it's usually been because the balance came out juuuuuust right and we were down to fumes/last clips/etc when the enemy finally dropped. That's hard to do.

One of the issues with "escalating combat" is that it also by definition means fights will drag out for longer, because the players can't just alpha strike their enemies. And combat that starts out with a lot of whiffing and not really doing a lot of anything, rapidly gets boring for the players and GM both. Being able to start at full "power level" and doing things that matter from round one does a lot to keep people interested in the fights.

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!


oriongates posted:

Preservers and Defilers was probably one of the worst offenders because unlike Windriders it wasn't as easy to ignore, since it was all about wizardry in general. Some of the wizard kits were pretty bad/crazy. I think the Cerulean wizard may have been one of the worst...but that was also because the Cerulean storm in general was dumb.

Generally, my opinion is that most of the later Dark Sun stuff that acknowledged the existence of the novels was absolute trash(though some of them added some decent new spells and rules for elemental clerics), the setting never needed stuff like Avangions. If something was going to make Dark Sun a brighter setting, it should be a bunch of grizzled, scarred badasses from the wastelands staving in a Sorcerer-King's skull with a rock, not a bunch of heroes coming in from the left field of a novel or a superpowered Lawful Good ultrawizardangel having a fireball duel with him.

The life-shaping and setting background prior to the Sorcerer-Kings, for instance, isn't fundamentally bad. Badly handled in places, definitely, but life-shaped mutants/mutations go well with the whole general fuckedness of Athas, and getting vital services and benefits from mutant lizards goes pretty well with the general resource-poorness of Dark Sun.

On the other hand, most of the expanded background isn't really necessary, and relies on introducing horrible ideas like the Pyreen. Most of it could easily be left ambiguous, for individual GM's to decide exactly what happened to create Rajaat and his Champions(in part because the actual mechanical benefits for being a Champion, which they list in one of the books, are pretty hilariously wimpy and pointless unless you REALLY intend to spend the rest of your character's existence hunting Elves or Halflings.).

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!




(it's a Black Tokyo supplement)

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!


oriongates posted:

both are equally out of date: we don't need Beasts to teach us that there are dangers in the world and the problems of the modern world are too complex to be solved with a sword and a loincloth.

I'm imagining a Beast and a Hero about to get down to a final battle after a harrowing chase/adventure when the door gets kicked down by a lawyer and the cops, who drags them both off to court for destruction of property, endangering bystanders, etc. Turns out giant squid and magic swords can't stand up to the legal system and a dozen tazings. Maybe that'd be a more fun game. Lawyer: The Legaling. Bringing mundane law to supernatural dorks before they tear up half the town.

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!


Terrible Opinions posted:

Also it's a personal thing, but I hate all of those monsters that are totally x monster from mythology but look like normal humans for "reasons". It's some hardcore bullshit that is pulled in tv shows for budget reasons, but tabletop games have no excuse. The "real" monsters in your fictional world should be those monsters not xmen whose theme sorta ties into those monsters.

The Lord of Hats posted:

At a very basic level, I kind of like the idea of getting to be one of the big horrible monster dudes. Something about playing a character who is, at least in some small way, a kraken, sounds neat. But slotting that into "weird loner at school who gets picked on" is just... ugh. It gets so many things rolled together at cross purposes with each other that you get a horrible message and unsympathetic characters.

Treat it like Octodad. As long as the monsters wear a suit, no one notices they're a kraken, a dragon or whatever. Your challenge is now to work a desk job without covering half your workplace in ink or being discovered by Hunters/the Technocracy. Actually having to roast someone with fire or tearing them in half is considered a failure.

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!


Nessus posted:

I figure that other than maybe Varg, who I believe is in jail for racism related crimes, every RPG person we call a motherfucker in these contexts has the unspoken caveat of, "In the context of trad games, and possibly also has some lovely opinions."

I know that I make a big deal out of going FIIIIIIEEEEELDS in every single one of my reviews of his games, but I get the impression that he genuinely enjoys games and wants them to be fun. Even if his idea of fun is deviant from ours and even if he's not very good at making games. Never actually seemed like a bad person, just maybe a slightly crazy one.

Also, not sure if people were aware, but there was a Kickstarter for a Kult revival a while back, which seems to have succeeded. Apparently the only thing that's really missing from the English version is the translation, so I'm looking forward to reviewing Kult a second time!

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!


Mors Rattus posted:

My experience playing ORE is what makes me speak up - I found it actually rather difficult to have good pools for everything I wanted, while the poo poo I did end up good at I was often godlike at. It was a very strict dichotomy, and one which I found rather unfun. A coinflip is absolutely not what I want my baseline 'poo poo I am not terrible at but not focused in' to be.

I find that it varies a bit by ORE game, usually the thing that prevents having good pools is when some ORE games decide to split skills up in a very granular way. For instance, I remember one, I can't remember which, but it may be Godlike, where the various "spot" skills were literally split by SENSE. Meaning you needed to invest in every drat sense separately, it seemed a bit ridiculous. The ORE games also tend to be somewhat poor about splitting up abilities well by stat, some always end up kind of forgettable while others end up dominating the game.

Also having literally only one roll with two variables(length and width) sometimes means that some things clash in combat where, if I remember right, there are some odd interactions between the initiative and dodging/blocking rules.

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!


Strange Matter: I admit it's been a while since I looked at the rules, but as I remember it, it was more along the lines of the game having rules for "partial" blocks, where even if you don't have enough dice to COMPLETELY negate an attack, you may have the dice to knock some width(or is that length?) off it. But, in order to attempt to block/dodge an attack at all, you needed to beat its initiative, and you couldn't do that without having the width/length(I seriously forget which it is) also needed for a complete block. So, as I remember it, despite there being a rule for partial blocks, it was literally impossible for it to happen, except in some strange edge cases.

Simple10

Today it's time to bully badly-designed "indie" RPG's.

Again.

But unlike Hc Svnt Dracones, at least Simple10 seems to be freely distributed rather than something the creators are charging money for.



There's also art, which varies between "bad" and "bland." Mostly it seems to be an RPG designed by someone who's never actually played or read another RPG, despite the foreword describing the creators as "veterans," and somehow this 82-page .PDF(60~ pages of which are just class abilities) took "years" to make.

The Basic Rules

I'm going to sort all of the rules first, which is counter to the game's organization. For some reason they decided it was a great idea to list the races and classes for some 60 pages before really explaining what any of their abilities and modifiers do. The one thing the game does manage to deliver, at any rate, is that it's simple. You roll a d10 vs a TN, if you roll over, you succeed. A 10 is always a success, and a 1 is always a failure. The basic TN is 6, which means that you're going to have great fun loving up every other time you try to do something, unless the GM decides to give you a nicer average TN.

The formatting and editing are also terrible, I'll note, but I can give that a pass for a project that has no formal editor(though the constant rear end-backwards wordings and typographical errors, combined with the generally awful font choices, makes me wonder what the three people on "layout" were doing).

Let's move on to combat, because the bad combat rules are basically why I wanted to review this thing in the first place. At first glance, combat is so basic as to be inoffensive, you trade blows, costing each other "Hits," until someone reaches zero "Hits," at which point they're "Helpless," and lie around losing "Wounds"(when attacked or just over time), while trying to recover. If they reach 1 "Wound," they're out of the battle(or, if someone walks over and finishes them off, dead, losing the last wound can only happen if someone else attacks you to finish you off.). If you recover, or if someone else helps you recover, you default to being restored to full "Hits."

Then you look up how to attack enemies and how to be attacked by them, and it all goes to poo poo.

The difficulty of hitting an enemy defaults to 6, as usual, if you're of the same "tier."(a stand-in for "level"). For every step you're above them, the TN to hit drops by one, for every level they're above you, the TN rises by one. The higher you roll, the more damage you do. Here's the example damage table against an enemy of the same level.

Simple10 posted:

R O L L 6: 1 damage
R O L L 7: 2 damage
R O L L 8: 3 damage
R O L L 9: 4 damage
R O L L 1 0+: 5 damage

If only the rest of it was as straight-forward and sensible.

Simple10 posted:

Enemies rarely roll on their own. They are instead assumed to roll the opposite of what the attacking player rolled. Enemies that nobody attacked deal 1 Hit to a random player at the end of the turn each.

But wait, what's the OPPOSITE of a roll? Is the opposite of a 10 a 1? The opposite of a 9 a 2? Or is it a -9? Dice rolls don't have opposites. Besides, enemies don't need to roll anything to attack players, because check out what happens if you roll under your TN, here's the table for, again, an enemy of equal "tier."

Simple10 posted:

R O L L 5: 1 Hit lost
R O L L 4: 2 Hits lost.
R O L L 3: 3 Hits lost.
R O L L 2: 4 Hits lost.
R O L L 1: Instantly helpless

The "logic" is that whenever you miss with a "combat action," your opponent "counterattacks." This also means that 10% of the time, your character is going to attack, fall on his face and be unconscious in the mud. However, that may be the safest place to be, after all, enemies don't roll to attack, and it specifically says that they do 1 "Hit" of damage when not attacked themselves. When you're Helpless you no longer have Hits, you only have Wounds. By the rules as worded, anyone on their face in the mud, bleeding out, is immune to mooks damaging them(it might seem logical that extra "Hits" would spill over into "Wounds," but again, this isn't stated anywhere.).

"But obviously, Purple," you're thinking, "These rules only apply to evenly matched opponents, where there's a chance of an attack instantly being met by being knocked on your rear end!"

Ha ha, no.

When your tier rises, that's true, the TN falls. But, here's the thing, and they spell this out explicitly in the PDF:



By the rules as explicitly spelled out, you will always have a 10% chance of KO'ing yourself with any "combat action," which is a delightfully vague term that could probably be stretched to include most skill use and, for instance, firing a bow at someone. It doesn't matter who or what you are, as long as you're not a generic enemy who's denied his roll to attack(and, frankly, it's probably safer not to be rolling at all), every tenth attack will knock you out(or every 5th, if you're using a two-handed weapon, which critfails on a 2 as well as a 1).

Art Interlude

So who wants to look at some art before we move on to the badly-written class abilities?

Because, hopping back to the start of chargen, there are also races! Because you can't have a fantasy RPG without races.



You can play as an anime human and, as per usual for humans in RPG's, have a tiny bonus in some edge cases.



You can play as an anime elemental, and, somehow, have even less noteworthy abilities. You get "telekinesis," but literally no thoughts on how it might interact with mechanics at all(also note that at the top of the page it says that Simple10 is in "4th edition," I can't tell if it's a joke or if it literally took them four editions just to get this far. What was 1st edition? A coin flip?).



You can be a furry, with the ability to eat anything, and being agile. Each race also has noted alternate races it could function as, retaining the same racial ability, in this case it suggests that the "Capra" could also be replaced with catfolk or elves. This amuses me since it'd also mean that elves would retain the ability to eat non-food items, crunching up old cans for lunch.



You can be a second kind of fursona, granting you permanent flight. Amusingly enough, shooting at enemies from the sky with a bow would still subject you to the 10% chance of KO'ing yourself with every attack, so it, in an entirely unintentional way, doesn't quite break the game.



No real hiding it, like half of the race options are various animal people. Considering how mechanically minor the differences between them are(it literally comes up to a +1 in most cases, if even that in some of them), I wonder why they didn't just throw them up as a "pick one and make up a fitting race"-list.



Not really sure why rock elementals should have tits. Probably have the only really "powerful" ability, because they have a 50% chance of ignoring anything that makes them Helpless, once every four rounds of combat, leaving them at 1 Hit instead.



You can be sketchy insect people with an HP bonus.



Or you can be shoggoths who are immune to mind control, probably the dullest extradimensional terrors ever.



Bad Class Abilities

Obviously, I'm not going to list out every ability, but I'm going to point out that they're almost all badly written. Even the ones that are mechanically non-confusing, are littered with vague terms like "nearby," which seem like a great way to get into an argument with the GM for half an hour about what "nearby" includes. Is it within arm's reach? Everyone in the room? More? Less? Or "Inspire," which has the non-combat use of letting you play music, though the actual mechanical effects or rewards of doing this is entirely up to the GM... which seems like exactly what would happen if any PC said "I pick up a lute and play a cool song." Some are just thoroughly pointless:

Con Artist posted:

On success, whatever you say, no one thinks you are trying to deceive them. Characters with evidence or knowledge contrary to your claim may disprove you. Outlandish or ridiculous statements can be seen through. This skill also applies to forgery of evidence and documents.

For the cost of a third of your starting skill points, you get to lie as well as just about anyone else, which is to say that generally people won't assume you're lying unless what you're saying is absurd or there's proof to the opposite! The only niche use of this skill, as written, is in case you're dealing with someone who doesn't trust you and would suspect you of being a deceitful liar no matter what you said.

Terrify posted:

Scary stories are the oldest kind of stories. 8+ renders a group of targets helpless.

So how much is a "group"? Can I knock out an entire crowd of people? Is this affected by tiers? Also at chargen you get to pick one skill you have a +2 to using. This means it's possible to start out with the ability to instantly knock out a "group" of enemies of equal level, 50% of the time.

There are also constant references to having "minions" or "pets," but no actual mechanics for them beyond skills affecting how many you can have. It never says anywhere what "tier" they act at, whether they have skills and classes of their own, etc.

Mend posted:

Donít be such a baby, ribs grow back. A target regenerates grievous injuries such as lost extremities, damaged vital organs and internal bleeding. Cannot be used in combat, nor restore hits or wounds.

This would be great if there were actually any mechanics for losing limbs or breaking bones. There aren't! So this skill is only useful by GM fiat, since it doesn't actually interact with any mechanics. You get the option to reverse it, which sounds kind of cool and horrifying... except that it doesn't actually heal any damage, so presumably the reverse wouldn't actually cause any damage. So I guess you get to make people's bones snap and splinter, their organs pop out and their limbs fall off... but somehow it doesn't actually hurt them or make them any easier to fight.

Healing Hammer posted:

Mercy and fury are but two hands holding the same weapon. Can direct your other action at an ally, healing them for as much as it would have damaged a foe, or damaging them on a failure.

What "other action"? This skill doesn't grant a second action, and players only have one action per round. Do they mean we get two actions, and the first hurts an enemy, then the second heals an ally for as much as we hurt the enemy? Or do we get one action that heals instead of hurting, but the phrasing is terrible? They should have just named this "Simple Ways To Argue With The GM For 10 Hours." Though I guess it doesn't roll off the tongue as nicely as Simple10.

There's also a skill, "Inure," that gives immunity to a "damage type," but nowhere does it say what the game's damage types are. "Target is immune to a specific damage type (fire, ice, poison, possessed etc) for a short time." How long is a "short time"? Is it enough to dash through a wall of fire, or enough to run across a volcano's caldera? What even counts as a "type" of damage? Swords? Is "sword" a damage? Or "sharp"? Who even loving knows with this stupid game.

They also clearly didn't even notice how breakable their game is. The "Knight" class gets an ability that means the first action they take in combat always rolls the minimum needed to succeed. You can combine classes. What if you make a Knight/Bard who uses his "Terrify" on the first round of combat, knocking out a "group" of enemies? Congratulations, every combat encounter in the game is now over before it even has a chance to start.

Hat Magic posted:

You can pull off amazing tricks out of your hat. Conjure anything small enough to fit through the hat out of it, regardless of length. Difficulty Tier depends on the item Pulling out a generic object (e.g.: bouquet of flowers) is equal to the caster, +2 tiers to pull out a specific object (e.g.: the key to this exact door), +4 tiers to pull out an object wider than the hat. Rolling too soon for the same object after failing will cause failure regardless of roll because the universe catches wise to your tricks. Enchanted items canít be pulled out.

But why would I WANT something specific? If I can pull out anything small enough to pull out of a hat, and my hat is large enough... a door? Sure, lemme just get out a cutting torch to burn through the lock. An enemy encounter? Sure, let me just pull out a few chunks of refined uranium and a beryllium sphere. I mean, there isn't even any limit to length, I could just pull out an unending rod of pure gold until any given opponent goes: "I'll take that as payment for loving off."

And so on. There isn't a single class in this "game" that doesn't have at least one skill that isn't incomprehensible, broken or has a completely broken interaction with another skill. The creators of this game should feel bad for having made it.

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!


ProfessorProf posted:

This is the art that did make the final completed cut? Couldn't they have at least erased the sketch lines?

It seems like they had four artists on the game. One of them seems competent, and I recognize their art because they sign their pieces, they did two or three pieces of art in the book that I've found. Another of them I recognize from elsewhere, he's responsible for everything I've linked so far, mediocre in skill and three/quarters of his stuff in the book is unfinished(and most of the art in the book is his). For the remaining two, they're responsible for two or three unsigned pieces of art and a turnip, a dagger and a pile of stones in the book's margins.



Here's a piece from the more competent artist.

PurpleXVI fucked around with this message at 14:05 on Apr 21, 2016

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?
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LatwPIAT posted:

Actually, they do! The number on the opposite face of the dice is naturally the opposite of the rolled number. Now, I have here a d10, and all the opposite sides have a sum of 9, with 9 and 0 being opposites. Though you're right in that this needs to actually be explained, because not everyone are as geeky about convex isohedra as I am.

Well, that's the, uh, "spatial" opposite, yeah. But there's no telling if that's actually what they mean.

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!


Evil Mastermind posted:

This art and character/race design is better than this game deserves.

If anyone wants to check out the game for the art(there's another couple of pieces by that competent artist), here's the bad artist's blog post that links to the RPG: http://moronsonofboron.tumblr.com/post/143089718900/simple10-rpg-now-has-a-printed-form-gold-edition

The link itself should be SFW but pretty much every link on the page other than the Simple10 dropbox link could lead to something NSFW. So be careful.

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!


ProfessorProf posted:

Yeah, but this relies on the deaths all being ambiguous - vat of acid, collapsing building, left for dead. What if you just decapitate the guy?

I think you'd need the players to cooperate a BIT with the mood, obviously. If they're too meta and aware of their opponent's immortality, yeah, reasoning it out could be difficult. But at the same time, the GM could help set it up, like...

The fight takes place on a cliff above a storm-tossed sea, and as the final blow strikes the bad guy, he staggers backwards and topples over towards the rocks and the waves below. Or he could treat the badguy as a load-bearing boss, the castle is on fire, and the instant the badguy collapses and the princess is out of her cell, the ceiling starts coming down, so there's no time to hang around and really chop him up.

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!


Halloween Jack posted:

I once tried to read DRYH, and didn't get any farther than the part where it tells you that you need black dice, white dice, red dice, pocket change, and two bowls. I probably wouldn't use the Kult system as written but I'd probably also just use some basic functional system instead.

The Kult system is janky, yes, but it can be the sort of janky that could be fun, assuming the players get to mess around with it, the GM doesn't abuse his end of it, and no one assumes it's meant to be a horror game. Because pushed to the limit, it becomes a game where you take a nap in the middle of combat to summon a tank piloted by your idealized dreamself while one of your friends kicks a vampire or zombiedemon in half from across the room with his "martial arts," and the third guy rides into the fight on a rhino that's been crossbred with a semi truck.

Like, it's goofy, but it's functional. There's no point at which it doesn't work or is pointlessly complex.

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?
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I'm genuinely tempted to throw money at Invisible Sun just so I can be first in line to review it.

Please discourage me from this self-destructive plan.

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!


Make a wizard, use powers to give him as close an analogue to iconic D&D spells as possible(fireball, magic missile, etc.), if at all possible, but physically fragile.

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!


gradenko_2000 posted:

I'd also like to mention that the DMG for this edition is great, because it includes all of the basic / player-facing rules on top of what the DM needs to be aware of, such that you can run a game with the DMG in front of you and use it to refer to, say, what a Fighter should be rolling to attack with at level 5. You couldn't do that with later editions of D&D.

The 2e AD&D DMG is a pretty amazing piece of work. It basically mirrors the PHB in a lot of the early chapters, but rather than just rehashing the rules, it explains why they were worked out as they were(like demihuman level limits), suggests alternatives and points out what the consequences of some of those alternatives would be. It also explains common pitfalls(giving out too much treasure, etc.), suggests solutions for them, gives advice on how to construct your campaign and encounters, tries to describe the roles of adventurers in a "generic" D&D world and is generally just really well-thought-out.

Even if you're not running 2e AD&D, or indeed any edition of D&D, I like to think there's a lot of good food for thought in there for DM's in general.

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?
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MightyMatilda posted:

That would explain why Humans get a free feat in 3.X. I guess they just really wanted to be sure that players would pick Humans, so they gave Humans the best racial feature by far. Assuming that the imbalance was intentional, anyway. It's just a really weak justification for the tremendous downside of having level caps less than half that of Humans.

Well, you call it a "tremendous downside," but as designed, it was intended for characters to start at level 1, and from level 1 up to the place where level limits start(early teens in most cases), is a long goddamn time of play. In practice, few people were ever really going to encounter it unless they started at higher levels or their GM's were exceptionally generous with XP.

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!


gradenko_2000 posted:

The thing that really makes it fall apart is the assumption that the game's rules define the world ... rather than just being the rules to play a game with.

I have to admit I always had trouble with that approach, though, the idea that things only ran by the rules in the book in the region around the PC's, and everywhere else just worked on real-world logic. It seems... off. But it's a preference thing, obviously. I honestly like those attempts at making rulesets that would result in a more-or-less coherent world if they were applied across the gameworld, at all times.

Obviously it only works down to a certain level of detail, the carpenter doesn't have to make to-hit rolls against every single nail he hammers in, but, still. It feels more right to me, even though that's silly.

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!


With regards to the Lot5R review, I'm seeing there's no mention of the Mantis clan, I thought they were a core thing. Didn't they get introduced until a later edition?

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?
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Also have I just not been paying much attention, or does the Lion seem to have more important characters who were SPECIAL FROM CHILDHOOD than the others? I feel like every single Lion bit I read had them already standing out from their peers at around age 3 or 4, or even straight from birth with the DARK SAMURAI.

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?
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I think that Eternal Hearts is up there as one of the worst things that's been reviewed in this thread(as in, the content matter was the worst, the actual review was good).

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?
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The sample talents for Godlike are AWESOME, and I think they help to illustrate why they haven't hugely upset history.

Also Traveller: Thank you for the L5R writeup. I've honestly always wanted to know more about the game and to get a perspective on it from someone who wasn't a hopeless fanboy for it.

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?
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SirPhoebos posted:

Ah, but this isn't d20, it's 2nd Edition, where "gently caress you, player!" is the norm. Plus, you know, TOMB OF HORRORS, so not only is it the norm, but it's the the expectation.

2nd ed wasn't particularly "gently caress YOU, PLAYER!" It gave the GM plenty of "gently caress YOU"-tools, but nothing that a vindictive GM in a later edition couldn't have decided to do as well. It's more that some adventures in every single edition are just terribly written.

Also, a high-level warrior enemy in 2nd ed would almost certainly curbstomp a PC mage in a one-on-one fight due to spell interruptions, not to mention acing almost every saving throw and having mountains of HP to chew through. In a one-on-one fight, unless you're sniping them with spells from a valley away, the PC warrior would definitely have the advantage.mage

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 think that there's really no such thing as a good "horror" system, because all of the stuff that's core to horror experiences. Crumbling sanity, mounting terror, etc. lose something, rather than gain something, if there are systems for them. They really only work if the players are into roleplaying them, and know how to do it. So really all the system needs to be able to do is provide PC's that are fragile enough that they have a reason to be afraid if something spooky is gunning for them. You'd probably also want a system where the players have little to no access to supernatural abilities of their own, because if they can throw fireballs or consult angels about what's really going on, they can just toast whatever's after them or solve all the problems with divine guidance.

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?
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Great plan, Acererak. How long has he been stuck waiting for someone with the absurd levels and death wish to power through his gauntlet?

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!


Evil Mastermind posted:

My favorite stupid mechanics thing in Ghostbusters will always be that a normal strength person couldn't carry a proton pack and a ghost trap or PKE meter at the same time without being overburdened. By the rules, Ray, Egon, and Peter should have been tipping over as soon as they geared up.

To be fair, Ray, Egon and Peter WERE huffing and puffing going up stairs and they weren't exactly sprinting all over the place.

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!


ZeroCount posted:

I actually don't mind Marian, in fact I think the banality actually works in her favour because she is loving anything but banal when you think about it.
Just when you think you have this fairly standard conservative old granny stereotype pegged it turns out she has dozens of kills, maxed out hero powers and is coming at you with a loving AK-47 holy christ. She's basically a member of the village council from Hot Fuzz who are all caricatures of petty small-town oppressiveness hiding action-movie style badass assassins who get into gunfights, spout silly one-liners and murder people with garden shears.

But you know it's Beast so she's a lot less cool by association.

Honestly she's great, I'd use her as an NPC in just about any game I could get her into. Especially if it's low-key investigative stuff. The old, slightly demented lady who invites them in for tea and biscuits, then when the chips are down and the monsters show up, she just wades in there with an assault rifle and body armour. Oh and the home knit sweaters she made for them, which they wore only to not upset her, turn out to be made of kevlar fibers and actually work as armour.

In any game with a sense of humour she'd be amazing.

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?
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Night10194 posted:

There is something uniquely heroic about facing a nightmare from beyond normal reality and still having time for proper procedure, minimum necessary force, and rule of law.

Nicholas Angel vs Cthulhu.

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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!


Night10194 posted:

Really, we need way more supernatural procedurals.

COPS. But the drunk guy by the side of the highway is a Tremere who's using vampire powers to walk around seven feet off the ground. That disorderly guy CAN break those cuffs when he hulks out into his werewolf warform. Getting called into to break up the domestic dispute between a Vampire and his Ghoul, because the neighbours think they're a bit rowdy. The awful driver that the officers suspect is high? Turns out he's just a mummy from 989BC who never got a license. Then they pick up an ordinary human burglar who gets shoved in the back of the car between the warform werewolf and the mummy. Teenager graffiti artists turn out to be Grey aliens in oversized hoodies.

It'd probably mostly be funny for a few sessions, but I think those sessions would be pretty spectacular.

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