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Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Evil Mastermind posted:


The Rijato Armored Warrior is the guy who developed and stole that power armor we read about back in the Equipment chapter. His tag skill is science.

So, all it takes is one bad disconnection roll and this guy's insanely expensive, almost irreplaceable suit of power armor breaks, right?

How about Aysle next? I have ... fond memories of the horror that is the Torg magic system.

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Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Bieeardo posted:

Vampire was sexy, transgressive, and both in a period of time when porn was still something most kids got from brief moments of unscrambled TV and occasional bits of lucky discovery in the woods. Where D&D kept telling you to kill the evil critters en masse, and not try to play evil, the WoD flipped that on its head and couched everything in the easily accessible terms of thinly veiled high school drama. They may not have intended it at first, but they were certainly happy to milk it for all it was worth.

This, by the way, is where the whole "roleplaying vs. rollplaying" :smug: thing got started. It was originally meant to draw a distinction between the White Wolf games, which were all about character and personality and humanity and Deep Cosmic Questions maaaaan, and D&D and its relatives, where you just rolled dice to kill monsters and take their stuff.

It amuses me that the use of the phrase has mutated so much that now the old-school D&Ders place themselves on the "roleplaying" side.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Alien Rope Burn posted:

It's like GURPS Vehicles but not even having the excuse of being a physics simulation, it's... a... well, like a lot of TORG seems to be just shouting "but you have to earn your fun!"

I don't know if it's "earn your fun" so much as a weird kind of simulationism that tries to make you *feel* like you're really building the gadget yourself. After all, there's a certain type of player who really gets a kick out of drawing circuit diagrams and the like for his Zapdeath Gun.

The odd thing is, many of the Torg creators were veterans of Mayfair's DC Heroes system. In the first edition of DCH, if you wanted to have a gadget you had to build it yourself, and that meant you were at the mercy of the dice. First time I tried to create a character, I started building a powered exoskeleton, rolled really well for installing the Strength stat, and all of a sudden my middle-tier hero could arm wrestle Superman. After a ton of complaints, Mayfair abandoned that system (for another system that didn't work either, but that's another story). So it's kind of funny watching them make the same mistakes with Torg.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Traveller posted:

One weird thing with this chapter is that many characters get random demon gear that doesn't quite show up in the books: Moonglum gets some demonic leather armor with eyes on his back so that he can see where all attacks come from, while Magum Colim (Elric's admiral) has a spear that returns to his hand when he throws it. There's also some strange choices in the NPCs to show - there's Oone the Dreamthief, from a 2001 story (dream magic to be written up in a future supplement!), but Sharilla, the Myyrrhn woman that is Elric's main squeeze during the search for the Dead Gods Book in the main saga is nowhere to be seen.

Using demonic anything is really out of character for Moonglum. I guess it's kind of like the old Giants in the Earth Dragon articles, where literary characters who never used magic in their own stories were given magic equipment anyway because D&D.

I can understand them wanting to highlight Oone, since she's another version of Una Persson, who's a rather important figure in Moorcock's work.

Anyway, it looks much improved from the original iterations of Stormbringer ... but my impression is that it's still just another fantasy heartbreaker that happens to use Moorcock's world.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



kaynorr posted:

IIRC, she was widely believed to be the self-insert/Mary Sue of Beth McCoy, who was the In Nomine line developer for a while. Read GURPS IOU and compare/constrast with the ArchDean for much the same MO.

She also seems to have written herself up as an archangel.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Count Chocula posted:

You're going to want to read League of Extrodinary Gentlemen, then. If for some reason you only read fictional dossiers that rewrite classic literature, start with The Black Dossier. Alan Moore even has the hubris to apply that treatment to Shakespeare, featuring one of James Bond's ancestors. And it goes on to do things like a William S Burroughs/Fu Manchu mash-up.

Could you just read The Dracula Dossier and it's related materials on its own, without playing the game? Tracking down all the footnotes and such could be fun in a House of Leaves way, and might get me to actually finish reading Dracula.

The look reminds me a lot of S. already (for those who haven't read it, it's an obscure novel filled with marginalia by a couple of researchers trying to decipher it).

Still, as a GM I have all too often had to deal with players who cannot be trusted to read and remember a two-page handout. I have to say it's daunting to imagine handing the players an entire novel.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Tasoth posted:

So I didn't see it mentioned, but I'm pretty sure the guy who wrote RuneQuest was an actual anthropology student. So a good deal of what pops up in the setting and magic system are based off trends in ancient human myth cycles. And if it's anything like the 6th edition,it leads to how each magic system has a different feel but relies on core resolution mechanics.

That was Greg Stafford, who created Glorantha and founded Chaosium. I don't think he was part of the rules design team for RQ, though.

Also of note: besides writing RQ, Steve Perrin is also a founding member of the SCA. So you can see where the desire for more realistic combat rules comes from.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Humbug Scoolbus posted:

Also a short story by Alan Dean Foster called 'Why Johnny Can't Speed' and the original Roger Corman/Paul Bartel movie Deathrace 2000

"Not to mention Harlan Ellison's 'Along the Scenic Route,'" he pedanted. (If I recall correctly, some of the older Car Wars material also includes Combat Football from Norman Spinrad's "The National Pastime.")

Selachian fucked around with this message at 16:47 on Apr 1, 2016

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Ratoslov posted:

Speaking of War, I have heard of a hilarious War/Survival build called the 'Disney Princess' where you speak the language of the animals, so every fight has the local animals flock to you and then viciously murder your enemies like a army of elite soldiers.

Do you have to sing "Immigrant Song" to make this happen?

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Young Freud posted:

Edit: gently caress, Rob Liefeld's Youngblood is this. I forgot which Image comic had that premise of a high-profile superhero team getting TV deals and endorsements and it turns out Pouchy McNofeet was the guy who came up with that.

Nah, Booster Gold was doing the "celebrity superhero with endorsements and movie deals" thing a few years before Youngblood came along. So that's one thing Liefeld isn't responsible for.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Strange Matter posted:

Holy smokes, Dog's conflict system is, like, nothing I've ever seen before. So basically the idea is that, against really thick-headed opponents you can escalate all the way up to lethal force if nobody is willing to give?

That's kind of the point of the game. You're a Dog, you have unquestionable religious authority and a gun, so naturally you're going to win most conflicts. The question is *how* you're going to win them, when you'll choose to escalate to violence, and what happens as a result.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



It never fails to mildly irritate me that the Cat Lord got turned female for this book. The original Cat Lord (from 1E's Monster Manual II) was male, and it just feels terribly cliched to me that anything cat-related MUST be female.

(Looking around, I see that 3.5's Epic Level Handbook brought back the Cat Lord as a male. Maybe the Cat Lord can just change genders at will?)

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



SirPhoebos posted:

Like many things in this book, it comes down to the monsters being created before the campaign setting. While I don't know the chronology of when monsters first appeared, generally if the stat bar has a listing for a Treasure Table, the more likely there'll be incongruous elements.

The slaadi first showed up in the Fiend Folio (1984), when the Outer Planes were mostly just vague descriptions in the back of the PHB and Deities & Demigods and a bit of material from the Dragon. Things didn't start getting more defined until late in 1E's life cycle, when the first Manual of the Planes was published in 1987.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Simian_Prime posted:

I've never followed that show closely, but if that's true, it certainly sparked my interest.

There are a couple of characters on the show who do consider the AIs superior beings to us mere humans in a way that sometimes seems like worship, yeah.

(Person of Interest is a good show, btw.)

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



8one6 posted:

The shot clock thing was kinda cool.

There was actually another game that used a system like that before Aces and Eights -- Millennium's End, a technothriller RPG where you played operatives of Not Blackwater. Not the same rules, but the same principle of plotting your shot versus a silhouette of the target to determine where you hit and whether cover helped.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Robindaybird posted:

Basically the idea was small dicks were actually better, it shows one is a man of reason and higher intellect, anyone with a massive dong was thought to be like a beast, ruled by desire and lust.

Secondly, big dicks are considered hilarious, they can't take a giant dong seriously.

Note that the pottery also shows both men and women without pubic hair, for much the same reason -- body hair was considered gross and animalistic, and a well-groomed ancient Greek would remove as much of it as possible.

Which just goes to prove: a penis shaved is a penis urned.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Wapole Languray posted:

Created back in 1987 by Stephan Micheal Sechi, Talislanta was designed to be a direct response to the hegemony of TSR and D&D clones that dominated the market in the 80ís. The main sell-motto of the game was:



This isnít really correct, the setting is quite different from your standard D&D/Tolkienesque milieu, but itís not completely out there weird like say Tekumel or Jorune can be.

Talislanta's style is very derivative of the works of Jack Vance, although not specifically drawn from any of Vance's books.

I have a bunch of earlier edition Talislanta stuff, and it always seemed to turn out the same way: a diverse colorful world but a mediocre afterthought of a system. I've never read the Big Blue Book though.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Young Freud posted:

Honestly, this would be an interesting idea, being a human in a world dominated by fantasy races, but would require players who would allow having to play nothing but humans.

This is basically Steven Brust's Dragaera, where elves rule the world and humans are an oppressed minority. (Brust's world is also one where magical telepathy, teleportation, and resurrection are reasonably commonplace.)

I will note that the only time I can remember demihuman level limits being an issue in my AD&D days was when my highest-level character ever, an elf fighter/magic-user, had to stop advancing as a fighter at level 6. Which pretty much sucked.

I think the reason they didn't come into play much is that the level limits just discouraged certain race-class combinations. Why would you ever want to play a half-orc cleric if you couldn't ever advance past 4th level?

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



I recall reading an article in some non-Dragon gaming magazine on how ordinary citizens might use Battle Magic spells in their everyday lives -- a farmer using Bladesharp on his plow, a carpenter using Bludgeon to drive nails in, etc. It also suggested casting Befuddle on yourself as a cheap alternative to getting drunk.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Halloween Jack posted:

Second is that this logarithmic scale is meant to accommodate both Batman and Superman without the numbers becoming too unwieldy--in D&D terms, if Batman's STR is 18, then Superman's is like 2,945*. But the strongest character you're likely to use in a Batman-specific game is like, Killer Croc or Solomon Grundy, so it's just not necessary.

DC Heroes was by far my favorite superhero game back in the day, but it was an ongoing problem that characters on the Batman/Green Arrow end of the scale tended to look really similar stats-wise because there just wasn't enough space to increase your stats without inflating yourself past what was considered "highly trained human" level.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



PurpleXVI posted:

So wait a moment, why does the 3.5E Blackball have 30 points of Charisma? It has no methods of communication with anyone or anything, no Charisma-based skills, and as far as I remember, no saves are based on Charisma. I guess it's just a really dashing and seductive sphere of absolute entropy.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



I actually ran that part of TGMM for my group back in the day, and we had a great time. Unfortunately, we never got to the rest of the adventure.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



senrath posted:

I'll admit I haven't read or played through it, but the bits I've heard from others who have played through it indicated a good portion of Way of the Wicked is "Do EEEEEEVIL things because you're EEEEEEVIL and that's what EEEEEEVIL people do for no other reason than to do EEEEEEVIL." What's your opinion on that?

I converted Way of the Wicked to 13th Age and ran it about halfway over on roll20; unfortunately, my group got hit by a bunch of dropouts and I wasn't able to finish. I do think it's a quite good AP, especially when you slice away the inevitable padding.

I never had any problems with my players going Chaotic Stupid Evil. WOTW is pretty clear-eyed about the problems that all too often sink evil campaigns, and it's good at putting the PCs in situations where they have clear goals to focus on, instead of just letting them roam the countryside burning and looting.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



My group almost left Grumblejack behind, because half the party didn't want to be burdened with a drugged ogre during the escape. But he quickly became their favorite NPC.

I skipped the whole giant frog bit as well and just did a montage (i.e. having each player describe a problem the group faced in crossing the swamp, and another player explain how their PC helped overcome it). Worked all right.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



gradenko_2000 posted:

I find that it works well in a dungeon-crawly game where the focus is combat, avoiding combat, solving puzzles and mapping out corridors, because the inherently limited nature of dungeons means you have pretty good control over how much your players can digress, but otherwise I agree that an "overland" or "roleplay-intensive" adventure/campaign can go off the rails pretty quickly.

What I generally end up doing is that I directly tell the players that we're running a pre-written campaign, and come to an agreement that some of it is ultimately going to be on-the-rails.

Not to jump too far ahead, but in WOTW's case it's generally pretty good about giving the PCs an overarching goal and letting them figure out their own way to get to it. That helps reduce the feeling of being on rails.

That said, there does need to be a certain level of buy-in to the adventure path's basic premise, and a willingness to play along rather than saying, "Screw this, let's become traveling toymakers instead." But really, I don't think that's too different from regular campaigns unless you're running a total sandbox.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



LongDarkNight posted:

Way of the Wicked - Book 1 - All Twisted Up


In practice, I found the Nine Lessons to be a tedious linear dungeon crawl. If I ever run WOTW again, I'd probably cut most of it and just use the final fight with Sir Balin as a "test."

I was a bit concerned about the contract because you know how players get at the slightest hint of something that impinges on their free will, but there was surprisingly little grumbling. Some were concerned over the clause that required them to obey Cardinal Thorn's every commandment; it might be better to edit that to only commands relevant to their mission, or something like that.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Merriam-Webster posted:

Definition of midden
1 : dunghill
2
a : a refuse heap; especially : kitchen midden
b : a small pile (as of seeds, bones, or leaves) gathered by a rodent (as a pack rat)

Subtle humor to describe what sounds like a crapsack world, or not thinking things through? You make the call!

PurpleXVI posted:

In any case, at level 1, we get a single skill point, we get to decide whether we're right or left-handed and we 31 pence(though, bafflingly, the shorthand for pence in the book is consistently d. So we'd be starting with 31d).

"d" was the abbreviation for the penny before Britain went decimal (from the Roman denarius).

Selachian fucked around with this message at 18:18 on Nov 29, 2016

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Green Intern posted:

Man, what a bunch of studs.

That looks like Walter Velez, who did a lot of paperback covers in the 80s. Dude loved drawing armor with lots of buckles and studs and straps and detail.

The Thieves' World boxed set was pretty awesome, though. Besides stats for the various characters and things in the books, it included a huge map of Sanctuary, tables of random city business and encounter generators, building floor plans, and for some reason a copy of Poul Anderson's essay "On Thud and Blunder' which, as it happens, goes nicely with the current discussion on realism in fantasy.

There was also the Thieves' Guild series, which was all about giving thieves more options. ("The Duke's Dress Ball" in Thieves' Guild 3 is pretty interesting because it's one of the first published adventures I can remember that emphasized socializing, sneaking, and clue-gathering rather than dungeon crawling.)

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Night10194 posted:

I don't know, I never actually read the comics. From what I understand, they were written in the 80s and kinda predated the whole 'furry' stigma because furries didn't exist until the INTERNETS.

That might also explain why they're hard to find. They were a niche comic from a pre-internet era and I think Albedo never became popular the same way as Usagi Yojimbo (which I assume was more popular because I remember my older brothers having tons of issues of it back in the day).

My recollection of the Albedo comics is that they're rather dry, slow-paced mil-SF -- not what you usually think of when you think of modern furry fandom. (At least not compared to stuff of similar vintage like Omaha the Cat Dancer.)

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



LongDarkNight posted:

Acts 2 & 3 establishes one of my favorite things about this AP, a sense of time elapsing. In the other Pathfinder APs Iíve done you go from zero to hero in a few months. This AP takes place over 5-6 years which feels more reasonable and reflects the earlier conceit that villains need to execute plans that take time to develop while heroes react to threats.

NEXT TIME: We didnít start the Fire.

I do think most of the encounters sailing north are filler of the sort that infests Pathfinder APs. At most, they establish that Captain Kargeld is an rear end in a top hat and you shouldn't feel guilty about backstabbing him (if you even would, since you're evil).

The Kargeld fight is pretty dull, though. It's just one big guy and a handful of mooks. I wrestled with ways to make it more interesting but finally decided screw it, these are just ordinary sailors, the PCs should be able to exterminate them with any reasonable-sounding plan.

Fire-Axe is a fun character. I wish the PCs interacted with him a bit more, but my players always enjoyed hearing news of his exploits through the rest of the campaign.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Cythereal posted:

I'm not a fan of this seafaring bit, because it seems like there's very little for the PCs to really do beyond random encounters. That's fine for break sessions or if a player or two couldn't make it, but the voyage is uninteresting and the PCs have nothing to do beyond backstab Kargeld at the end. If I were running this AP, I'd save the trip for one of those off nights or just gloss over the voyage and give everyone XP at the end. Or invent an interesting encounter like finding a creepy abandoned island castle that could make a good supervillain lair later in the campaign.

The triton attack has potential to be an interesting fight (how often do you fight tritons?), but the rest is forgettable.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



SirPhoebos posted:

After listening to the Bonus Content, Champions seems like the kind of game that creating characters would be incredible but actually playing it not so much.

That was pretty much my experience when I tried the game out back in the Champions III days.

Hunted was a particular pain in my rear end as the GM -- I'd sit down to plan the week's adventure, make my rolls, and suddenly I'd have to work three or four different groups into the storyline.

And keeping track of Endurance was so, so tiresome.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Nuns with Guns posted:

this is neat! Do you have a write up of how your party played through it anywhere?

My particular group was a bit hesitant as to this sandbox-y portion. They managed to ambush and kill Varning's patrol and the dwarves, and killed another patrol that went out looking for Varning before Balentyne figured something was up and stopped sending out patrols. They managed to use Mama Louisa's food to poison the castle (lucky for them, they got a really good roll on how many guards were incapacitated). They also murdered the reeve of Aldencross and partly burned down the inn. They managed to catch Father Donnagin outside the castle when he came to investigate what was going on in the town, and got rid of him too. They completely missed the play and the romantic triangle, however.

At the climax, they snuck into the castle, took over the gatehouse, and held it against an attack by the wizard and his ice golem until Sakkarot was able to show up. They did see Sir Thomas once or twice but never faced him, but still earned enough VP for a close victory. I had Sir Thomas go down fighting under a horde of monsters, finished off by Fire-Axe himself.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Note that in the 1E DMG, the Teeth of Dahlver-Nar were D-N's own teeth ... and to use them, you had to put them in your mouth, where they would "graft [themselves] in place of a like missing tooth." So yeah, if you got the full set you had to knock out all your teeth to use them.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Evil Mastermind posted:

Hard to say, because your Possibility points are also your XP, your salvage-bad-roll points, and what you have to pay out each adventure to keep using certain abilities.

I think this has come up before, but the published Torg adventures were also incredibly loving stingy in handing out Possibility points, so by the time you got to the dramatic climax the players were almost certainly running on empty.

Even worse, the mechanics for dramatic scenes stacked the odds against the players with the intention that they'd be forced to dig deep, throw in as many cards as they could, and spend Possibilities liberally to overcome the odds in suitably exciting fashion. Except, of course, by the time a dramatic scene rolled around the players wouldn't have the Possibilities they needed for that sort of thing.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Know Your Role is actually a pretty good game for a d20 product. The big problem I always ran into is defining what a Savvy (i.e. Charisma-based) move is. If the People's Elbow is a Savvy move, does that mean any move can be Savvy if you tack on enough showing off?

If you want a genuinely questionable wrestling game, check out Kayfabe. It has some interesting ideas -- players are supposed to play both the writing staff of a wrestling show *and* the wrestlers themselves. But I can't see how it would work out in real play.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



SirPhoebos posted:

Basically yes. It's been a long time since I've read KYR, but stuff like Hogan "hulking up" or Cena's 5 Moves of Doom would be Savvy moves. As for what a savvy heel would be, I'd say Goldust is a pretty good example.

The thing is, most of the Savvy moves given in the book are cheating and taunts, so it's easy to make a Savvy-based heel. Making a Savvy face is a lot harder -- I've seen more than one argument over whether "basic move with extra showboating" counts as Savvy.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Bieeardo posted:

Paragon City and its outlying boroughs from City of Heroes was situated on Rhode Island. I think that was mentioned exactly once in the lore.

And even the designers forgot that ... when they revamped the Faultline zone, it ended up looking like Los Angeles, complete with palm trees.

Selachian
Oct 9, 2012



Evil Mastermind posted:

What's the Everquest incident?

Here's an in-depth article about it.

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Selachian
Oct 9, 2012




The only time I've ever seen anyone actually use the word "esurient" is in the Monty Python cheese shop sketch.

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