« first day (2659 days earlier)      last day (2296 days later) » 
00:00 - 22:0022:00 - 00:00

12:01 AM
I was reading some advices for players and DMs, and one advice said that the DM can lie, change rules, make new ones or do cheat in order to make the game more funny for the players... but this game use dices... how can you cheat a throw dice????
@doppelgreener That's the thing--I like seeing non-diamonds weigh in on these things... in many ways more than I like seeing diamond-answers. (For discussion-ey things, at least. If it's a simple "how does this work" question with a straightforward answer, I don't really care who answers.) So I've got to wonder if bat-diamonds would help drive up community-moderator participation.
@nitsua60 @doppelgreener I'm not sure getting more eyeballs to meta will get more participation in meta. I mean, I'm pretty sure I was the first vote on nitsua's recent question (I'm a big fan of that idea, btw), and I reckon I'm generally pretty fast on the scene when a new meta post goes up. I just don't generally say anything.
@Miniman But it's not going to generate less, right?
@nitsua60 Well, in a chaotic world there are no guarantees, but I'd be pretty surprised if it generated less, yeah.
12:05 AM
Is the diamond always there, or does it just appear when there's something you haven't looked at?
In case anyone's curious, that ^^ is what an elected moderator's top-bar looks like.
(Cos if it's the latter, they should really do something similar with the review queue alerts.)
The diamond opens up a menu of communications and mod-specific tools.
But it also gets every meta post in its queue, and it lights up (blue) when there's something new in the queue.
Although they'd never do it, adding new meta posts as a review queue would make some sense.
12:08 AM
@doppelgreener Right. And my jump ends when the table looks away from me toward the next person in initiative. Riiiight.
Like having the meta review queues be part of the regular review queues, so they actually get looked at, it's something which only makes sense in a small-site context.
I like this idea a lot too
@Miniman Are you saying "interlace the meta review queues and mainsite review queues, rather than clicking through mainsite review queue or accessing queue from meta to get to meta review queue"?
Just checked: I've cast a grand total of 4 votes on meta reviews, all-time.
@nitsua60 Yep. But while that makes sense for us, for Stack Overflow it doesn't, so it'll never happen.
12:24 AM
Hey guys, picture man and some kind of celestial being consumate and gets pregnant, but they must depart back to where they came from. How do I make the final parting line in the last words really good.
Super rough draft of their parting words
"Only you can forge your destiny and bring heaven back to earth, but we will always be with you".


"Me and your son."
hey there @Skyler
oy shal
happy new years
how are things goin on your end
alright here, although much of my gaming is on hold, unfortunately. the good news is that I'm putting the finishing touches on a mini-campaign
@Shalvenay that's nice, what campaign
@Skyler something more cnoventional :) serves as a bit of exposition for some worldbuilding stuff of mine
hey there @ACuriousMind
12:44 AM
@Miniman So at first blush it looks pretty similar to our overall stats: the couple biggest tags show up the most. Is this counting the tag that was added, or just counting that this tag was on some question that went through the cycle? (I have a hard time imagining, for instance, that a post was closed and then reopened because of a missing tag.)
There's also an impossible-to-measure non-signal that we could opine on: posts that were closed for lack of system, never edited, but would have had the tag in the first instance if OP had realized this wasn't just a $my_game site.
@nitsua60 Any tag that is currently on the question.
@nitsua60 posts that lack a system tag and are closed? or do we need a "no system" close reason to be able to capture that?
@Shalvenay Lots, although in many cases even if they had included the tag they still would have been closed.
@Miniman yeah, that's the noise I was concerned about
Rachel Ferrigno on January 08, 2018

It’s that time of year again—the annual developer survey is now open! This survey marks the 8th year we’ve been asking the developer community for their thoughts on everything from programming languages to career preferences. This year, we added in new questions about artificial intelligence, ethics in coding, and more.

As in previous years, anonymized results of the survey will be made publicly available under the Open Database License. We encourage you to download and analyze the dataset yourself when it becomes available. Throughout the survey, certain answers you give will be treated  …

for the developers in the room ^^
12:52 AM
Already (depressingly) done.
@Shalvenay Yeah, it's what my recent meta's about.
@Miniman The plot thickens...
Interesting second datum--I just double-checked, and now my "ask a question" page suggests "pathfinder magic-items powers" as possible tags. So that list's generated on-the-fly. I wonder how...? — nitsua60 ♦ 39 secs ago
If that selection's generated randomly, and if it's a non-uniform sampling weighted on, say, tag-usage, then maybe most of the time people are seeing a system tag.
I'm sure we talked about this before, but I'm having trouble finding it.
@nitsua60 I should point out, those 3 tags are based on the content of the question, so they're only random before you've typed anything.
1:08 AM
@Miniman are you thinking of the "suggested tags," which appear below? Or at least I thought they did?
Q: What determines the example tags? (tags in the placeholder of the tags section when asking new question)

haykamWhen asking a new question on any site, you see a placeholder in the tags section. This contains three tags, like this example from the English Language and Usage site: Or in words: at least one tag such as (adjectives prepositions british-english) max 5 tags How are the tags that ap...

@nitsua60 Yep, and it sounds like I'm super-wrong.
I almost want to bounty that meta Q asking for a more-authoritative answer, but I have virtually no rep on meta.
1:20 AM
hey there @Teralynx, welcome to the RPG.SE lair :)
1:37 AM
hey, I just double-posted an answer on rpg.stackexchange.com/questions/113147/…
I don't know how.
Is there any additional cleanup I need to do?
@fectin Looks fine--thanks for checking!
Cool. Thanks!
"cleanup in aisle 11" :P
Q: Would this question about lowering the barrier to entry on choosing spells be closed?

AlexI'm about to kick off a second D&D 5e campaign for a set of friends interested in trying D&D for the first time. They've got nearly zero experience with the game, and we're hitting some hurdles I didn't expect. One of these is that two of them are playing classes with spells, and they've ended ...

2:15 AM
am i right in reading that the body thief moves always results in death (unless the brain is returned via wish in 1 round?)
hey there @NautArch
howdy @Shalvenay
what's the good word?
putting the finishing touches on a mini-dungeon
@Shalvenay ooooh
@NautArch err, mini-campaign even, sorry
2:18 AM
@Shalvenay what's the theme?
@NautArch bit of a warpath theme, with some thieves' guild stuff mixed in
intended to do some worldbuilding exposition
warpath theme?
@NautArch the leadup's to some battlefield scenes :) with some logistics interdiction and VIP escort in between
@Shalvenay Did you add pointless gargoyle sconces?
@Shalvenay very cool. I like the idea of logistics within a D&D campaign.
2:22 AM
Or do it in tacky gold and marble trim
The whole thing, a giant Trump Tower
@SPavel harhar. there is a dungeon in the campaign, but haven't really done any visuals for it
I'm actually wondering what the best way to frame a "party has to dash through a battle of titans to get to their objective" scene in D&D 5e is -- if I should just do it as pure narration, or add a few skill checks in there, or what...
@Shalvenay Is there more than one outcome that you're okay with?
@Miniman one of the sides is able to aid the party if they have trouble -- and no, not particularly, which is making me lean towards making it a narrative element
@Shalvenay Sounds like a race with shifting terrain and enviro-effects, mechanically.
@nitsua60 nods the battle is "pit fiend vs. wizard" basically
2:29 AM
@Shalvenay Ok, so what's the goal of the scene?
@Miniman the pit fiend and wizard may enter stage right later, but it's partly to show the party just what's at stake on this battlefield
@Shalvenay Hmmm. That's tricky, because this is the kind of scene that the players are likely to want agency in. There's a big difference between "a few days later, you arrive at the town of Genericfantasyton" and "you keep your heads down and hope not to attract the attention of the pit fiend as you scurry across the battlefield".
Even low-level players are likely to want to try to tip the scales in the wizard's (or the pit fiends, if you have those kind of players) favour.
@Miniman yeah, that's my concern as well
2:50 AM
@Miniman a user recently posted a meta Q asking why people frame-challenge in asnwers. You dropped a comment linking in our question about "handling the desire to challenge the frame" and titled the link "Highly related." Do you mind if I edit that comment so that the content of the target is also indicated? While I agree it's highly related, I wonder if some more context might draw more eyes to the target than just your say-so.
@nitsua60 Would I mind if you put in the effort to fix my laziness? Well, I would mind, but that sounds like too much work.
I do the same thing all the time! In this case, though, I noticed that the post is short enough that when one's first looking at the comment the "linked questions" part of the sidebar isn't even visible yet.
@nitsua60 In all honesty, I almost just put the link in with no text and left it at that, before my conscience forced me to go the extra mile 1.5 cm.
@Miniman I just wish that bare links (like you describe) would automagically display as their question's titles. And I'm pretty sure that sometimes they do and sometimes they don't, and I have no idea when which happens.
3:05 AM
@nitsua60 I think it has to do with the difference between a link generated by the "share" button and a link copied from your address bar. If you're happy to do some cleanup afterwards, I might experiment a little.
@Miniman Sure. Why don't you vandalize one of my meta questions, so nobody else gets the pings.
@nitsua60 That was my plan, yeah.
Ahh, right. Two steps behind ya, buddy.
Hmmm. Just realised that will permanently add to the linked questions sidebar.
Which is...ok, I guess, but I think I'll try to find one that already has that link.
@nitsua60 Well none of those worked. Is it possible there's an automated process that sweeps the site and converts them?
that's not quite it
Maybe it never did in comments, but it sometimes does in posts?
3:14 AM
Ah, looks like it doesn't happen in comments...I guess maybe there's just lots of people who put in the effort to type out the titles properly.
@nitsua60 Yeah, what you just said.
hey again @Skyler
4:21 AM
@Rubiksmoose D&D has a long history of designer advice being only narrowly applicable to certain play styles, or demonstrably unworkable. But even if it didn't, the idea that the creator is the final or best authority on understanding or implementing their creation is Not A Commonly Held Belief outside certain narrow groups--one of which is speculative fiction fandom, so a lot of us are disproportionately exposed to it.
(Literature.se has been struggling with that perspective shift because so many of its users come from sites like scifi.se.)
@BESW Just twenty minutes ago I was reading Jon Peterson talking about having gone as far as we can determining authorial intent, and not caring to look for sources to go further because it's now (1974) more important to be looking at how consumers experience and understand the product.
An early-days question on lit.se about The Raven had an answer citing an essay by Poe about the process of writing that poem.
The essay is considered by many to be complete hokum, invented after the fact to defend against accusations of plagiarism.
But a number of lit.se users just found the essay, all on its own, and used it as the sole basis for an answer because The Author Said It About Their Work So It Must Be The Only Possible Answer.
When, of course, even if the author is right... the author's interpretation or understanding is no more valid than the reader's experience of the text. Which, as Peterson says (and it's SO much more obvious with RPGs) is the really important thing: what's the actual influence and effect of the text on the audience?
It might be interesting sometimes to compare that to statements made by the author about their intended influence or effect, but if you leave the audience out of the analysis you're missing most of the point of the created thing.
Trying to plan D&D with Dungeon World principles in mind but I'm terrible at adhering to "Don't overcomplicate things."
I misspoke, this is actually advice about bad GM habits in Blades in the Dark which feels worse.
Aardwolf warm up
@NoChorus lots of people seem believe that what artists do is write down a paragraph, then turn that paragraph into a film/painting/song and the goal of art appreciation is to get the paragraph back out of it
4:46 AM
A detailed analysis, with story graphs, of every Choose Your Own Adventure book: https://jeremydouglass.github.io/transverse-gallery/gallery.html
A very small dragon...
1 hour later…
6:12 AM
@BESW always waiting, always watching
7:09 AM
Is this the mythical period of time where nobody is in the chat?
Then let's make the bus stop become "in use".
I'm in the part of the evening when I'm on call to help my dad for the next four hours or so.
Sounds like fun. Help him with what, if I may be so bold as to ask?
So, I had ordered multiple sets of new dice since too many of mine were sent to "dice prison". I now have a large bowl practically filled with various dice. lol
My father has Parkinson's Disease with Lewy Body Dementia. He needs help with most basic tasks.
7:15 AM
I see. That must be tough on you and your family.
Aye. It's one reason I'm near chat so much--I'm self employed and work from home most of the time so I can be his primary caregiver.
@SoraTamashii Did you order Chessex dice, or some similar carefully-weighted brand?
Sounds like hard work, but if it's for the people you love, I assume it must be fulfilling.
Facing challenges is how we develop positive qualities. Doesn't make it easier, but that's not the point.
As for the dice, my standard "DnD" dice are Chessex and similar, but I do have non-standard dice that are not, but that I did my own test on potential weighting. I put 2 of my d3 into the dice prison almost immediately as a result.
(My tests only checked for obvious weighting and patterns. I could do more extensive testing, but I just need the odds to be good, seeing as not even Chessex roll perfectly true.)
4 hours later…
11:28 AM
Does anyone know if the DnD 5e Kensei monk changed between UA and Xanathar's?
@kviiri my money would be on yes, as most things did. I would be willing to check a specific info for you in Xana, but I don't wanna run a full comparison
@Szega You don't have to, thanks :) I have a friend with Xanathar's and can ask him to borrow the book.
I'm trying to cheapskate my way through just one more 5e campaign.
@kviiri It did change, yeah.
2 hours later…
1:15 PM
Heh, I've been seeing a lot of chat flags of Russian messages on the Russian SE chat. Now I finally put one on Google translate... is/translates to a non-offensive inquiry about someone abusing chat flags.
Not getting tired of this one either #DnD #DungeonsandDragons
1:28 PM
@BESW Our group, except replace "random NPC" with fishing or something :)
@kviiri My guys once spent a session making dresses, in the middle of an irradiated battleground of colossal war machines
1:58 PM
Does anybody know if this is possible? rpg.meta.stackexchange.com/a/7686/28591
How does one determine if a tag is a system tag?
Especially when asking about a system for the first time?
@kviiri I'm assuming they would have to be manually designated.
@kviiri Thought about that as well, but if one was talking about something for the first time, there wouldn't be a tag for it would there?
I don't believe that it's possible to create custom tag logic
My head's gone back to the idea of making a heroic fantasy game for Fate recently, and part of me wants to introduce the concept of consumable items (as limited-use stunts), and a concept of adventurers getting to cook & eat so as to be able to pick out and obtain temporary bonuses. (But I can't tell if that last bit is just coming from my love of Breath of the Wild, and if it is, I'm not sure if that's actually a problem.)
@Rubiksmoose Clearly anything's possible, it's just a matter of whether it's enough of a priority to be implemented over whatever else developers would be working on
2:02 PM
The developers are working on Stack Overflow, SE happens to benefit from the fruit of their labours
And there's some similar functionality on meta.SO at least, where you need to pick one of a few tags on any post to designate it as discussion or support or the like.
But I doubt there's enough revenue from RPG.SE to create special functionality for it.
@Rubiksmoose Yeah, so how would one tag it?
@doppelgreener out of curiosity, what do you see as a downside to requiring a system agnostic tag?
The functionality on SO meta probably uses a finite list
That's not really feasible for systems
Users who create tags need to be able to say "this is a system" without rousing a developer from their eldritch slumber
@kviiri I just realized it was possible to create a tag right in the post. Yes I feel extremely silly.
2:06 PM
@Rubiksmoose But I think requiring a user to create a tag and define it as a system tag isn't very user friendly... even if it's a rare occurrence.
I wouldn't personally have any problem with it, but then again I'm not one of those users who would respond to that question with "what's a tag" or "what's a system tag".
@kviiri I agree. Though it might technically solve more issues than it creates (I haven't looked at any stats to confirm this if there are even any that can), it does seem like a poor solution if that is what it would require
Thought it was worth a shot at least. It does seem like new users are not realizing the importance of tags and that really is a problem with the site's UI flow I think, not theirs.
@Rubiksmoose I'd say in raw number of problem instances, your suggested solution would probably solve way more than cause, that's true.
Q: Could we have a separate close reason for missing system tag?

kviiriA lot of the times we close a question for being unclear, it's because it's missing a system tag. I would guess that's the case for over half of our closed-as-unclear questions. With this in mind, could we have a separate close reason for it? The biggest advantage of a separate close reason woul...

I asked this on meta earlier. I don't really think our "On Hold" system is really newbie friendly, but apparently we'd need some slack from SE network side to make it happen.
it takes up a tag slot to say specifically nothing, *no* tag says the same amount. it exists because of an expectation that people must specify a system when they're asking a question, and its presence satisfies that expectation by saying "actually there isn't one".
however, it shouldn't exist: tags describe the content of the question, not the absence of content in the question. system-agnostic is describing an absence of content.
second, that pressure shouldn't exist: if you don't have a tag because you don't have a system, that's fine. i've actively plucked the system-agnostic tag off qu
[/system-agnostic rant]
The downside is requiring system-agnostic on everything that wouldn't otherwise feature a system tag, means system-agnostic, which is a problem and almost certainly a meta-tag, becomes extremely prevalent.
And it makes the silliest reasons for ever using system-agnostic, instead be situations where using it is mandatory.
@doppelgreener Thanks! That makes a lot of sense. I knew there would be issues there. Especially compelling would be the fact that it would most certainly be misused and thus we'd be right back where we started: needing an appropriate system tag
2:25 PM
I think "explicit no" does carry semantic information better than "implicit no", but I agree that it's often used to carry the wrong information.
A big bold flashing (okay, not really flashing) message above the tags saying to please include a tag about which game you're playing (maybe with a few examples) may mitigate things without much development effort, though of course users don't read.
I'm assuming it's possible at least to change the box in the upper-right that says "How to Ask". The sentence "Is your question about role-playing games?" is probably site-specific already.
I don't really like the idea of requiring a system/non-system tag to post the question. But since it's such a key part of how the site works at this point, I definitely agree that we should nudge users into using the system tag in the tag prompt, and potentially also in the help center. Preferably in the tour if such a thing were possible.
It shouldn't be a standard that's spread only by word of mouth anymore
Does SE have bots?
@kviiri Well, it does, but the "explicit no" gets mis-used, we get along just fine without any system (or system-agnostic) tagged on an awful lot of not-system-related questions, and: if a tag's presence functionally says as much as the tag's absence, why does it even exist?
Reddit makes good use of auto-moderators that pester posters to add tags on subs where tags are mandatory
2:29 PM
Including a bit of explanation about the breadth of RPG.SE (by which I mean, the breadth of RPGs I guess), and how it's hard to answer without knowing where somebody's coming from, all in that how-to-ask sidebar on the Ask Question page, might be useful.
@doppelgreener Yea, I think we'd be better off without.
@SPavel There are user-made bots, and official bots which echo RSS feed content into chat rooms.
Q: Can a machine be taught to flag comments automatically?

AndyTL;DR: Yes it can. Background On June 27, 2014 Skynet awoke. It looked at Stack Overflow and thought "Why are all these people being so chatty and talking about obsolete things? I should nuke them all!" Fortunately, Skynet was a baby and only had access to my 100 comment flags a day. Prior ...

@doppelgreener Chat doesn't count
There's a bit on SO, but I don't think anything made or officially sanctioned by the developers/moderators
2:31 PM
@doppelgreener Do our site help say anything about requiring a system tag? I'm not sure if all newcomers read that documentation, but it would be a good first step.
@SPavel Chat RSS feed bots are the only official bots, so fall back on: there are user-made bots. Smoke Detector, which trawls mainsites to flag spam, is one of them. I'm not aware of any bot which posts content to mainsite anywhere.
@kviiri The on-topic help page is the only one that is site-specific, beyond specific accommodation from stack exchange developers.
I can edit that one if there's a good spot for it.
But it's certainly possible (note I'm just saying it's possible, it could be controversial and I'm not saying it's a good idea) for 5 high-enough-ranking people (or 1 moderator) to run user-made bots on their account to have their own list of system tags, automatically vote-to-close immediately any question that doesn't have it, leave an appropriate comment (likely linking to an explanation meta post), and automatically vote-to-reopen upon an edit that adds a system tag in.
But that just automates the existing not-particularly-welcoming-to-a-newcomer experience
I was thinking that if it were automated, it would just post a comment that says "Hey you didn't add a system tag, you should do so"
vtc is a plan B measure
Preferably VTC as unclear plus ask are both the Plan A.
But really, we don't exactly need a bot -- we get a question missing a system tag maybe once a week (off the top of my head) and it gets caught quickly by the community.
How often do questions get reopened after receiving the system tag?
2:40 PM
@kviiri based on personal experience, almost always. Unless the question has other issues. But those concerns are often included in the comments asking for the system.
@Adam How often do users return to edit in the missing system tag?
That I don't know.
I'm sort of concerned that getting one's question on hold as "unclear" is not the effective way to communicate that "you should specify which system you're playing".
Especially as newer players might not even know any systems apart from DnD or that editions vary wildly.
I imagine the most common offenders are new users. Especially ones who have a question and just want to get an answer and then may leave to never return. These people aren't going to read any of our help articles, and probably won't take the tour. They won't have the experience looking at other questions, and won't ask for help. We have to tell them up front as they're building the question. If we aren't going to include a tag requirement, then the best place to do that is in the tag placeholder
For me it already nudges, so I'm not sure if that is going to help at all honestly. We've already established that is is pseudo-random what pops up in there though
2:46 PM
@adam I haven't left my table because it's pretty much my only option (other than driving 1.5 hours to play with Nitsua)...and I like the other people and enjoy the game enough that I can accept the bad the parts.
@kviiri I completely agree. We need a better solution.
This reminds me of a question I need to meta myself, though...
We can't change the "how to tag" panel, can we? It would be golden to put a "Please include a tag for the game system you are using (pathfinder, dnd-5e, etc) if applicable."
so, I was in the process of writing up a meta question about this: Is there a good way to decrease the amount of questions submitted without a system tag?
but is this a good idea?
I thought having one big umbrella question would be better than asking about each option or scattered discussions on chat. But, I'm pretty new here so I could be completely off base
Well, I'm impatient so I just let it fly. I'm already getting downvoted on one meta thing today so why not two?
3:06 PM
@BESW "He never said it'd be easy, He just said it'd be worth it." One of my sister's bits of wisdom for me. As she sat in a hospital with a dying (infant) child.
3:26 PM
@doppelgreener By my count we get multiples a day. But maybe I'm looking at more D&D questions than you =)
Q: Is there a way to decrease the amount of questions submitted without a system tag?

RubiksmooseQuite often we get questions on here with no system listed. Often they are by new users. This seems like a fault with the workflow of the site and something that should be able to be corrected. And, moreover, I think it should be corrected. Having all these questions is a bad experience for new ...

Q: What is the cheapest site to buy the 5e D&D rulebooks from?

Bogdan IonicăWhat is the cheapest site to buy the 5e D&D rulebooks and adventures from for EU shipments? I am referring to the prices of the books as well as the price of delivery.

Q: Is there a general usage guideline for tagging between editions of the same system where editions are very similar?

kviiriTo start with the simple case: with DnD, we tag by edition like dnd-5e, dnd-3.5e, pathfinder etc. It's an understandable practice, as rules and content vary wildly by edition. A question regarding a particular edition could almost never be answered by sources of another edition, and dungeons-and-...

@kviiri I'd ballpark it in the neighborhood of 50%, based on my recent survey of about a week's activity.
@doppelgreener But it gets caught AFTER the question is posted. And I think that is a big issue because then they are exposed to the relatively new user-unfriendly hold/closed system and people have to deal with getting OP to specify and sometimes they never do. It seems a much better way to deal with this would be something upstream
3:40 PM
@nitsua60 oh, yeah, probably
2 hours later…
5:53 PM
i so enjoy the power of humour
@doppelgreener wuhappen?
colleague made a typo in an area of the site. we noticed it yesterday.
while fixing something else in that area of the site today, they forgot to fix the typo. i pointed it out.
they responded: yes, sorry, i'll be more careful in the future.
(which is a strangely severe way to take it. it's just a typo.)
i respond: no. no chances. you made 1 typo. you die.
they laughed and were at ease again.
telling them it's okay or don't worry about it probably wouldn't have put them at ease nearly as much.
our rotating DM wants us to write a rhyme for tonight's session. I'm debating writing about poorly developed puzzles. :D
aw yes
do it, and make it a haiku
rhyming haikus are harder, but I accept the challenge
5:56 PM
haikus are rhymes
NO WAIT. haikus are poetry. rhymes are poetry. haikus aren't rhymes. nevermind!!!
category mistake
why can't i make a rhyming haiku?
although I think he's going for more of a rap battle theme
and given that the problem DM will be there as a player...I probably shouldn't antagonize.
be nice and whatnot.
@doppelgreener you responded appropriately. Typos deserve capital punishment.
@NautArch correct
@NautArch good call
thank you for backing me up on that though
@doppelgreener Up against the wall, @doppelgreener. Several typos in that sentence.
as if, none whatsoever
There once was a puzzle so obtuse
Its author's head must have been loose
Every single clue
Over heads it flew
It could only have been solved by Zeus
6:05 PM
Haikus, even in the loose form where only syllable count is observed and not the other conventions, are difficult in English with all the articles and prepositions eating syllables.
@PeterCooperJr. nice job :D
@doppelgreener Thanks, though I'm sure one can do better.
6:27 PM
Q: Tips for running a D&D game in short sessions

AidanovskiIn one of my current campaigns, my players and I meet each day at lunch at our school to play our game. The lunch period is only about 30 minutes, which gives us a very short time frame in which to advance the game. Once everything is set up, we only have about 25 minutes to play. I've tinkered w...

While I think this is a good question, could someone who's on a proper computer edit it to seem less "idea generation"-y? Cheers.
6:41 PM
@PeterCooperJr. i really wish i could use that...i just don't see it going nicely :)
probably change the last line to "Clearly, the players are to blame. Get the noose!"
@PeterCooperJr. Zeus solves puzzles one of two ways: have sex with it or throw a lightning bolt at it. Sometimes both.
It was hastily put together, and in the online-rhyme-finder I used, I put in "loose", saw "Zeus", and figured it'd work well enough
But I hereby release my silly little limerick into the public domain, for people to tweak, build upon, or remix as they like. I will, however, accept no responsibility if it causes your DM to roll some dice, sigh, and declare that Tiamat attacks from above.
6:57 PM
I would be more scared of Tiamat attacking from below, so angered by the limerick that she burrows from the Abyss to the Prime Material Plane fueled by mere blind rage
Sigh, I'm really just not good at asking complicated questions I'm finding...
@Rubiksmoose buck up, kiddo! Why do you think that?
@Rubiksmoose Asking questions is a skill that nobody teaches
At least, not properly, and not in most places. I'd say about half of my graduate studies was just "this is how to ask questions that will get you useful answers"
also note that the site's activity seems a little low, which doesn't help when you ask difficult questions.
but low activity may be incorrect
Both times I've asked a complicated question (one about leveling w/ neg con and the current one) I just have a hard time getting people to understand the nuances of the question
7:05 PM
I find that happening to me all the time at work.
@SPavel Yeah that was a lesson I had to learn in undergrad research as well. I guess I'm just not good at translating that into other things? Which I'm ok with, but it can be frustrating when you want to do those things lol
My bard's (Bocephus is his name) rhyme @PeterCooperJr.:
All around, me clowns
Frozen in place, I'll put them down
One at a time, or all at once
Enemies of Bo stand no chance.

No weapons, no armor
Just music and amour
All must be sacrificed to Bane
Oh yeah, and let love reign.
@NautArch The last time I think the only reason I ended up getting good answers was because I had a tussle with the mods and the question ended up getting modified and distilled into a very good question.
@NautArch Fantastic!
@Rubiksmoose asking good questions and getting good answers are two very different things
ack, there's a comma in that first line that shouldn't be there. Sorry @doppelgreener - don't kill me!
@NautArch one definitely helps if you want the other though
7:12 PM
@Rubiksmoose yes, but your questions generally are getting at least 5 upvotes (ignoring the beast death by levelling question). That's not bad.
You're asking difficult questions, it's going to be hard to get good answers.
fwiw I'm not trying to be mopey or fish for compliments or anything, I'm just venting self frustration a bit. If anybody sees anything that I can improve I'll more than happily take those critiques.
@Rubiksmoose I'm honestly not sure. Looking at the polymorph/spell component question - it's a tough one. Out of curiosity, what sparked the question? Did this come up in a game?
@NautArch I read the first line and immediately broke out into “Mad World”.
@NautArch Actually in that case it was me watching JC argue with someone on Twitter about losing HP while leveling lol
@Yuuki that completely changes the tone! Hadn't realized the similarity :)
@Rubiksmoose I think questions that are coming from a specific scenario tend to do better than theoretical ones. Maybe. :D
7:19 PM
@NautArch That is almost certainly true. Not in small part because I think they have a greater chance of actually happening lol
@NautArch i'll interpret it as artistic license
And the rules are really only designed around "normal" things happening. When something crazy happens, the rules aren't designed to give a regular objective answer, but generally answers that just amount to "your DM has whatever he thinks reasonable happen" aren't that exciting to post or receive.
@NautArch That is actually a very very good point. I often have a lot of issue surrounding defining the importance or case that I am looking at. Which is probably because my questions tend to be poking at holes I see and seeing if anybody has good ways to deal with them.
It's quite unlike board games, video games, or CCGs.
actually regarding my current question, I think I might have an example that works better
7:24 PM
It may be worthwhile to state up-front that it's just an exercise in seeing if the rulebook says anything specific on a contrived situation, as opposed to a practical problem you're seeking help with. I think the tag is supposed to convey that, but it can be subtle, and probably isn't the best phrasing of that concept.
if you cast dissonant whispers into a spell glyph and it gets triggered, from whom or what does the affected party run?
@Rubiksmoose Hmm, I'd probably say from the Glyph. The GLyph is acting as a proxy for the caster. Which is actually a good way of answering that!
@NautArch I guess I'll edit that as my example instead of the much harder to follow metamagic example.
@Rubiksmoose You may also want to try to keep questions specific, focusing on the example rather than the general case. When I was curious about whether 0 damage counted as "damage" (purely to play with and understand the rules better, not because it was going to matter for anything), I focused on concentration rather than the broader question, and got good answers that helped explain the general case too.
And if your specific question still leaves gaps about how other cases work, you could then ask questions about the other cases or about the general case if needed.
@PeterCooperJr. That is another very good point. I tend to like overarching questions because I tend to think of it as answering a whole bunch of questions instead of being filed under one specific case. But on the other hand, I think that is not the usual here.
7:36 PM
But I think you're more likely to get answers to "Here's a scenario that (at least somewhat plausibly) could happen" than "Let's explore all the corner cases around zero maximum hit points".
that's actually a really good point. I think questions get cluttered when you need to supply examples that also need to be addressed and answered. It's like having multiple questions and that's not generally a good thing.
Likely part of the culture is due to the influence of Stack Overflow, where it's expected to be about a specific question about a specific piece of code, not exploring all the nuances of how all possible multithreading race conditions can happen.
@kviiri There's perspective gaining ground recently, that when transferring poetic forms from one language to another, format structures like syllable and stress guides are the first thing we should throw out while content guide are much more important.
@NautArch Yup I just added one of those things you don't like to the OP.
On the other hand, deciding the overarching rule and considering a bunch of cases allows you to have a much better idea of the right answer and apply it consistently
@Rubiksmoose The Stack works best when it's providing actionable solutions to problems that have actually occurred.
7:46 PM
@BESW Indeed. I am learning that very slowly I guess.
The further we get from "I'm facing a problem, please help me solve it" our questions get, the more likely it is we run into scope and topicality issues which make it very hard to get good answers... and the harder it is to tell if an answer is actually good, because we don't have clear criteria for judging it.
@BESW Yeah, I can sort of subscribe to that.
And if you want "What are all the rules related to subject X", you're basically just asking for a copy of the rulebook that's organized and indexed better.
You may find "Optimizing For Pearls, Not Sand" a useful read for broad Stack Exchange philosophy.
Which, granted, I think there'd be a market for a book that's "D&D 5E organized and indexed better", but I don't think StackExchange will do it.
7:49 PM
I heard a beautiful bit of poetry yesterday, in a pub quiz. Strangely RPG-relevant too.
@BESW I'll definitely read that!
@PeterCooperJr. I mean I don't think I've gone that far lol
> To the walker, the road's a chain
> true freedom is the snowy plain.
> --Aaro Hellaakoski, translation mine
@Rubiksmoose No, I wasn't trying to imply you had. Just saying that's the other end of the spectrum, and it can be hard to draw the line between "good actionable question about specific thing" and "topic overview of interesting stuff".
Good answers to a specific question often bring in the overarching philosophy behind how they found that answer. It's easier for an answer to expand the topic broader than was asked, than to explain just one piece of a broad question.
@PeterCooperJr. Fantastic point. I'm glad you said that because I was failing at finding a way to express much the same idea.
A: Why'd my second question get removed when surely people would be thinking about both?

the dark wandererThe biggest benefits here have little to do with questions. It's about the answers. 1) When I post an answer to a 'question' that's actually a bunch of related questions, I have to address them all (at least, if I want to be a good site member); that's more work for me, not always possible to...

7:57 PM
BTW I really do appreciate the help and advice from all of your, both in the past and right now. Thanks :)
A big issue comes in when you consider how to vote for answers. Voting's very important because it's how we sort for quality.
If a question is too scattered, answers start to only respond to part of the question so you'd need multiple answers to find an actionable solution to the whole problem... that's not good, because every answer needs to be self-sufficient or we start to curate them differently out of fear of losing the coherency of the site because everything's interdependent.
And if a question's too theoretical or too diffuse, we can't tell if an answer will actually solve the problem--and that's the best guide for voting!
@doppelgreener XD
@Rubiksmoose Everybody here has gone through a learning curve with the Stack Exchange. We know it's esoteric, unusual, and the documentation isn't very well indexed, but the folks who've stuck around tend to be those who can, at some level, get a bit of satisfaction from the delve--and definitionally people who are very active on a Stack Exchange tend to be people who like to share their learning so others don't have to make the same mistakes.
8:19 PM
Q: Should I use a narrow system tag, or go broad if possible and use system-agnostic?

doppelgreenerI am playing D&D 4e and I have a question about how I can create an excellent pirate adventure. Since people have pirate adventures in other RPG systems, and Stack Exchange is about useful answers, should I tag my question with dungeons-and-dragons or maybe system-agnostic in order to cover a wid...

@trogdor :)
@BESW ooh, that's my one!
At the time I posted that, we had a lot of questions that were going "hey, I have this problem in a game. But I want to be helpful to as many people as I can! If I cover more games I'll be even more helpful, so I'm not even going to say what game I'm playing! Then people have to answer for potentially EVERY game! Everyone gets helped at once! Genius!"
But actually it was expressed as "How do I deal with this crazy monk in my party? I'm sure system doesn't matter so I'll just tag this system-agnostic and not mention the system." Or they'd go "How do I buy weapons?" and they'd get closed and it turns out they just want to buy one specific magical artifact available only on the elemental plane of fire, but wanted to maximize helpfulness so just asked about every weapon in the game.
Ironically that broad scoping made answers worthless and the question difficult to even begin to respond to — meanwhile, being as selfish as possible, asking only about their own exact problem without regard for anything else, meant they gave us tons of information maximizing the detailed correct nuanced answers we could give them.
@Bagahnoodles Hi!
8:34 PM
8:48 PM
@Rubiksmoose arlgebargle!
@BESW gosh, i never thought of connecting those dots. but it is!
9:23 PM
@Rubiksmoose I love the idea of DW or Major Image for the Glyph. Major Image could do some very cool things.
@doppelgreener yeah, if I am looking/searching for something, and the only things I can find are really broad questions when mine is really specific,.... that would suck
surprising those people don't think of that very common potentiality
but we all miss stuff I guess
Well, part of it is that the Stack's got this thing a lot of traditional forums don't, where answers are expected to connect all the dots and not leave things as an exercise for the reader. Traditional forums are more about throwing everything at the problem and letting the reader sort it out.
In that context, broader seems better because it'll get more raw material thrown at it.
And a clear, concrete, specific question could certainly mention something along the lines of "I'd be really interested in understanding the broader principles at work here", to help encourage answers to broaden the scope.
But the Stack's emphasis on not just providing the solution, but explaining and supporting how and why it's a good solution, means questions need to be evaluated very differently--and that an answer to a narrow problem contains the tools for wider application.
@trogdor and ironically, nobody actually searching for "how do i buy that fire sword" gets helped by "how do i buy weapons", including the person who asked the question in the first place
9:32 PM
I feel that newcomers to StackExchange might get it better if the word "wiki" was used more, or maybe was somewhere in the site name instead of "exchange" or the like. It's really about creating a shared knowledge base, and less about discussion.
Except since everybody wants to do discussion anyway they needed to add chat rooms like this one.
whoooop! Just got a new piece of machinery working at work.
@NautArch Yay! working things are always a good thing :)
@NautArch Is it a coffee machine? Does it involve one of the following: lasers, powerful crushing force, handsome Apple-style industrial design?
@SPavel (semi) powerful crushing force. A whopping 55 PSI!
@NautArch It's funny, before this question I had never even considered taking this spell, now I'm quite liking the idea of having my bard take this. :)
9:37 PM
that's it, though. no lasers, and machine design is pretty uninspiring.
Does it exert this force only onto the floor, simply by being heavy
@doppelgreener yeah exactly
whenever I do use the search tool, I am looking for some pretty fine tuned stuff
not general things
and adding more general stuff to the pile does the opposite of help
@trogdor I had never thought of it like that. Now I am regretting not phrasing that question in terms of the specific spell
In my experience, question answerers tend to make their answers more generic than the question calls for, anyway.
@SPavel Aye, this is a trend I've seen.
9:49 PM
@Rubiksmoose fair enough, now you have :)
@SPavel It is indeed what I always try to do, but for some reason I just assumed other people don't.
Mostly it's because question answering is an effort to appeal to a majority of users and not just the OP
So they will all strive to be maximally complete, even if the OP doesn't call for that level of detail or scenarios, nobody is going to take away points if the answer gives the answer they feel is right, and then more information
I tend towards that too
if you looked up any one of my answers they are long on details
to a degree that embarrasses me a little most of the time
@SPavel Yes, but it also exerts force via pneumatic principles.
@Rubiksmoose Feel free to workshop questions either on meta or in chat, too. Sometimes one fresh set of eyes is all it takes.
9:58 PM
@nitsua60 In the future I'll definitely take advantage of that. Maybe I can break my record and have one of my question have less than about 100 edits on it XD
00:00 - 22:0022:00 - 00:00

« first day (2659 days earlier)      last day (2296 days later) »