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12:05 AM
@V2Blast Thanks to you my Epic Games account has a 1:4 ratio of games I can vs cannot play on my current OS.
I wanted to answer this question but I feel like I can't put together a good enough answer cus after looking at the answer I was gonna post it's only like one sentence long.
Anyone got any advice on where I can look for sources
12:41 AM
Q: Does Dim Light created by an effect override Bright Light in an area?

XiremaTwo examples. A silvery beam of pale light shines down in a 5-foot-radius, 40-foot-high cylinder centered on a point within range. Until the spell ends, dim light fills the cylinder. —Moonbeam, Player's Handbook, pg. 261 You create up to four torch-sized lights within range, [...]...

but they could never really nail down the if
So Disco Elysium's got me thinking. One of the things DW did to play around with the dice mechanic was to give a barbarian d6+d8 for barbarian rage but then there'd be side effects if...
I'm thinking "if you get 15 or better" and also there's mechanics to step the d8 up to 10 or 12.
Hi guys, I'm trying to get a quick answer on a D&D 3.5 issue and The Great and Mighty Google isn't helping.
It seems that for all the magic out there and spells and everything, True Seeing, etc., if you want to hide your identity, and all you care about is not being recognized, all you have to do is physically wear a simple mundane mask and even a scrying sensor granting the greatest true seeing effect out there can't see through it.\
That can't be right, right?
12:56 AM
Assuming your face is all you need to hide, pretty much (though see the X-Ray Vision Ring).
And if the mask is lined with a sheet of lead then... yeah even that's useless.
But consider divination spells.
I haven't been able to find any that would see through a mask lined with lead
I can read your thoughts, locate objects related to you, spy on your secret conversations, watch you in private, even ask a god to just tell me your name.
Hiding your face behind a mask isn't sufficient to conceal an identity.
@BESW lol
1:03 AM
@EmrysTernal mindsight is coming to mind....(it's like super-duper truesight. normally only found on a smallish set of monsters, but druids can gain access to it via some of their higher end shifting feats)
While it's true that any GM could just make up an effect that bypasses these problems, as-is read thoughts has a really short range, locate object doesn't work if the object is so common that there's loads of them or if the object is destroyed, spying on conversations doesn't work if the conversation was telepathic, and asking a god for the answer isn't really an option in my setting.
@EmrysTernal Gonna go Man in the Iron Mask and wear that lead mask for years at a time? Hope you've got neck muscles like Mike Tyson.
A lead parts of the mask only need to hide a fraction of your face to make recognizing someone practically impossible.
But yes, D&D's spell lists are neither comprehensive nor particularly coherent. This is one of the lesser reasons I prefer narrative spell systems.
@BESW That demo was... disappointingly short. It does seem promising, but the demo felt like it lacked any real introduction of the story or characters - more of a teaser about the setting than anything.
1:09 AM
actually, mindsight isn't quite it
Like, all you'd need is prestidigitation to modify the look of a mask and locate object flat won't work
@EmrysTernal It sounds like you've got a very specific scenario in mind, where the goal is to hide one's identity for a short time in a context where wearing a mask wouldn't call even more attention to oneself, in a campaign with unusual setting limitations. So it's gonna be hard to give you an answer to a general question about spell lists which addresses your specific situation.
Etch-a-sketch up the mask for your heist, then clear it when you're done
A modern-day-style heist
D&D 3.5 has a sprawling and almost incoherent collection of spells, spell-like abilities, supernatural abilities, and Weird Items. If you're a player looking for a way to identify an NPC hiding behind a mask, there will be a solution though it may have gated access.
And I can't seem to find one!
not as-written anyway
1:13 AM
And if you're a player looking for a way to obscure your own identity, there is no foolproof way to do it so nobody can possibly bypass it, but you can make it difficult enough that the GM will need to work unusually hard at it.
If you're working on a heist premise, then you're working against whatever security measures the location has put in place--concealing your face may not be the biggest worry when a bank's contingent spells can slap an arcane sigil on your butt which the caster can track from across the world.
There's a spell which gives you a +4 to knowledge checks and lets you make them as if you're not trained. Knowledge (streetwise) "Who robbed that bank?"
Or, you know, just hire a detective.
I'm... pretty sure that putting a mask on is just using the Disguise skill?
The bank's probably got Spymaster's Coins in every bag.
@BESW eheheh, uberbait :D
(or uberdyepack whichever way you wish to look at it)
Like, you are not your face. You are the way you carry yourself, react, move, and speak.
Yeah, I'm not sure why the extreme focus on the face.
H*ck, there's a level 4 spell that will give the answer to any question so long as the answer is a person's name.
(Identify Transgressor, BoVD)
1:25 AM
Who needs to see a face, when apparently you can be identified by how you walk
@JoelHarmon I've had people do that to me. I dramatically changed my hair and clothing and a friend could still identify me by my walk from 400 feet away in a moderately populated area.
@BESW There's a Blackadder joke in there, but I can't seem to find the clip...
Spell Compendium's Circle Dance (level 2 or 3) gives you the direction of any specific creature you have "firsthand knowledge of" provided it's on the same plane.
...and now I'm remembering how annoying it was to have to ask multiple manuals whether I was allowed to do something cool.
...and how silly D&D's idea of "evil" is. [sigh]
1:54 AM
@BESW it is a very silly notion indeed
hey there @KorvinStarmast
@Shalvenay hi shal
@KorvinStarmast how're things going?
@BESW If you read the published adventures for this edition, it mostly conforms to conventional meanings. If you try to apply anything mechanical, .. well, that's not so hot.
@Shalvenay In truth, tired and frustrated. At least my dogs love me.
hey there by the way @jgn, welcome to the RPG.SE lair :)
2:17 AM
@Shalvenay Thanks ^^
2:55 AM
I don't think I understand how meta/faq are supposed to be used -_-; Are they like rules? Guidelines? A convenient place to hold meta discussions without any kind of power behind them?
@jgn Something of all of the above.
@jgn The mainsite is for questions about TTRPGs. The meta is for questions about the mainsite.
If you have a question about the site itself (how the site is run, or why a question was closed, or whether a tag should be created/deleted), then Meta is the place to go.
For example if I see someone not behaving the way the meta/faq say they should, what should I do? What is expected of them?
I'd note there is a more meta meta site as well. You may be aware this site is part of a larger network, and the parent company who owns them all tends to do network-wide policy elsewhere.
@jgn As you gain more reputation, you gain abilities on the site, such as voting to close. However, you already have access to two of the best tools: commenting on things to communicate with them directly, and this chat which is full of interested high rep users plus some admins.
2:59 AM
@jgn If it's user misbehavior you can flag the offending post/comment
Is behaving contrary to the meta "misbehaving"?
@jgn Have you taken the tour?
So after discussing some problems that I experienced on the main site I was told that I should go read the FAQ / meta threads. But despite reading hours reading them I think I can conclude that most users don't do as they say, I'm just not sure if they are supposed to or not :/
@JoelHarmon yeah, but I don't think it really covers meta does it?
@jgn It can be a bit confusing when there are contradictory policies. Meta questions don't always get retroactively edited when a new policy is defined years later.
@jgn Ah okay. You could leave a comment and include a link to the relevant meta discussion.
3:02 AM
@MikeQ and then what should happen? Should I expect the user to abide by it? Or does it mean "I disagree with what you are doing, lets talk about it and maybe you will change your mind"?
Yeah, the whole thing is... rough. The Stack doesn't let us edit the tour and FAQ per-site very much, and it just clones the front-page Q&A-no-conversations site setup for us to have... conversations... about how the site should function.
@jgn Skimming it now, it doesn't seem to, no.
@jgn I'm unsure what you're asking. If the user disagrees with some ruling or viewpoint regarding TTRPG mechanics, then no the meta doesn't cover that.
The RPG.SE meta covers things like, why we don't guess systems without a tag, or why we don't ask about developer intent, or how to frame a homebrew review question
Here's an interesting situation: you're not sure how to use the meta site in relation to the regular site. You might be able to formulate a specific question on that, and post it to the meta site.
I think that'd need to be on meta.meta.rpgse, no?
3:05 AM
@MikeQ "why we don't guess systems without a tag" so I see a user guessing the system without a tag, and link the relevant meta thread. Should the user now abide by it? Should they argue their case on the meta? Or do they go about their business and ignore it?
Or just keep picking our collective brains; either way.
@JoelHarmon I kind of assumed that at least someone would be able to conclusively say "Oh meta, that works like X", I didn't know that it was such a difficult question haha
@jgn Then other users would respond. If someone guessed a tag and added it, the tag would be removed. If an answer guesses the system, it would be downvoted.
I will make a question on meta :)
@MikeQ "Then other users would respond." and if they don't respond as the meta describes?
3:07 AM
@nitsua60 You get your second-order logic out of here.
@jgn If the majority of users aren't abiding by a policy, then it would be time to re-evaluate that policy.
And if you have a question about a specific situation, whether you tried to resolve it in comments or not, it's ok to ask about it on meta.
Many possible paths forward: you can do nothing; you're under no *obligation* to try and enforce meta-supported policies.
You can leave a comment saying "here's what we recommend doing here, link to the relevant discussion is ...." Then the user might do nothing (but your comment will live on as a signpost to future readers, which is probably helpful anyway), or might change the post, or might go argue a different position in the meta.
You can come in here to say "I'm not sure this is right... any thoughts?"
(or here)
3:20 AM
@nitsua60: "you're under no obligation to try and enforce meta-supported policies." am I to understand that I should be following meta-supported policies but it's not my job to enforce them? @_@;;
Q: How are the meta FAQ supposed to be used?

jgnAre they rules, recommendations, convenient places to hold discussions? How are they to be used? What expectations are there when you link someone to a meta thread? Are meta top answers a suggestion on how the site should run? What is the expected lifecycle of meta threads and their effect on the...

I'd say that to the extent that you're aware (or made aware) of meta-supported practices, yes: you should follow them. And if you disagree you should still follow, while making that disagreement known on meta and trying to change minds there.
I'd also say that how much you want to take up the mantle of helping others learn to do that is up to your own energy/interest.
There are only 4 people on site (I believe) who should feel any *obligation* to reach out to users and try to steer behavior: the elected moderators.
What does "steer behavior" entail? Editing answers? Deleting comments? Or just telling them "hey check out this faq"?
Largely, it's worth noting that most of the stuff discussed/agreed-upon on meta isn't "policy" so much as it is "guidance" - they're not so much rules as they are general guidelines we operate by. So they won't be abided by 100% of the time, especially by people who don't know meta exists, but simply a general consensus that people follow because it generally works well for us. (There are a few hard rules, and a few guidelines we follow near-universally, but those are rare.)
I'd say something like "tag rules questions with system/edition" is a near-universal guideline, but there are questions that aren't rules-based and which work even without a system tag.
In contrast, "one question per post" is a general guideline that we usually follow because tossing multiple questions in one post makes it hard for any one answer to comprehensively address them all, but there are cases where one question is broken up into several examples/cases in a single post, which still works because those examples are all subsets of the same overarching question.
@jgn "Steer behavior" as I used it in that sentence encompasses everything from a friendly comment all the way up to site suspension/account deletion!
3:32 AM
@nitsua60 I posit that if not following meta "guidance" risks having your account deleted, then they are functionally rules!
@jgn account deletion--I should be perfectly clear--is a most drastic measure. The vast majority of deletions are for spammers, then a small number for sockpuppetry (where the other, associated account gets a good talking-to).
Not following strongly-supported community-generated guidance generally leads to suggestions to do so.
Not following those suggestions generally leads to questions as to why not.
Not engaging with discussion about why not generally leads to instruction to follow guidance.
Not following guidance when instructed generally leads to ensuring that the instruction was understood.

We use our words a *lot* before we use any heavier tools.
And I am utterly confident that each of the elected mods enters each of those ^^ steps fully hoping to learn something from the interaction. We're all cognizant that we may have misunderstood something, or misread an interaction, or badly communicated something.
@jgn Consider that a major category of RPG questions on the site can be boiled down to "A group of people have agreed to use XYZ rules together. There is a disagreement that the rules don't seem to cover. What do I/we do?". That formula also applies to the site itself.
We're happy to be corrected, because that means we've learned something and will (hopefully) be better at moderating going forward.
We're very open to the idea that a meta policy is flawed and should be re-evaluated, given a modicum of evidence that it's causing a problem.
And when there's an RPG-specific policy in place, it's almost always because there was a problem that the community called attention to and decided a policy was the best way to address the problem.
When the problems change, the policies should change commensurately.
@nitsua60 is that to say that spamming and sock puppeting (or as you describe in parenthesis, using alts) are actually just meta policies and not actual rules?
In the case of "guessing systems without a tag", if a user refuses to comply with the meta, and other users don't care/know about the meta, then nothing happens?
@BESW well I don't really fully understand how it works :/ So far metas are guidelines and if you don't follow them well... Either the meta is changed or you get your account deleted >w<
3:47 AM
No, spamming and sockpuppetry are network ToS violations. It's to say that I'm not sure I can think of a time that deletion would be or has been brought to bear on a "real" user, other than self-requested.
And I'm not sure I can think of whether, if I could think of an example, it would be proper to share or not (on the grounds of "don't give out *too* much info about our tools).
And hopefully now I've obsfucated it enough that you're left with the conclusion "ToS violations can lead to deletion, I can request deletions, and *maybe* pushing things super-far could get me into that sort of tr
@jgn Your last sentence isn't at all the situation; if I've made that impression I'm sorry, I'm clearly not communicating well, and I'll leave it to the more-capable hands in this room to clean up the mess I've made.
In most cases, when something doesn't abide by the meta, and someone points it out, then that something gets changed, either by the original author or another user. But it's not like the author is going to be punished for it.
The Stack Exchange is a company that developed a Q&A site structure for answering coding questions; it decided to let people curate other sites under its umbrella using the same Q&A system, and the only tool we're given to adapt from "for coding questions" to "for RPG questions" is site-specific meta policies. That means we've got one tool for everything.
It is inelegant and sloppy.
But there's no case I know of where failing to follow meta policies (rather than Stack ToS) results in swift account bans, or even suspensions. There's dialogues and figuring out what's going wrong--if the user is confused or uninformed, if the policy needs to be revised, etc. We know the system we're saddled with is sloppy and the only way to make it work is to try to communicate effectively.
Gah, we barely even have the tools to let users know that such guidance exists.
If somebody establishes a long-term pattern of just being quarrelsome, that'll get banned eventually but that's, again, under the aegis of the TOS.
(Hasn't gotten me banned yet!)
3:54 AM
I don't know of any instances of RPG.SE users getting suspended for refusing to follow RPG.SE meta policies--although I have seen suspensions for repeated and unrepentant personal attacks during discussions about meta policies.
@nitsua60 "No, spamming and sockpuppetry are network ToS violations." then I don't think it's accurate to use them examples as how ignoring meta could get your account deleted? Maybe I'm missing something :////
@jgn For now they're talking about RPG.SE meta policies, not the ToS
@jgn Yes, that looks like an accidental conflation of two different kinds of policies.
It can be difficult in part because elected moderators like Nitsua60 are expected to moderate both locally mutable site policies and handed-down-from-on-high Stack Exchange policies.
Yeah, it was a bit of scope creep on my part. Meta discussions --> you don't have to steer anyone --> we (elected mods) are obligated to do some steering, using the tools from comments all the way up to deletion --> no, we don't delete for misunderstanding meta --> [really shouldn't have mentioned deletion at all, probably]
So with that in mind, let me reask, what does "steering" entail PURELY with regard to meta?
4:08 AM
@jgn It depends, but usually involves editing plus an informative comment, ideally with a link to the relevant meta policy
For me, it's leaving comments that suggest how a policy can be used to improve someone's contributions to the site, like pointing out that adding a person's experience to an answer makes it easier for other users to apply the solution to their own context. I vote and flag and edit according to policies, and if somebody's behaviour is causing distress I'll get a moderator's attention on it.
If someone argues with policies on mainsite or in chat, I'll urge them to make a meta post about it because that's where it'll get the eyes and expertise for their concerns to be addressed.
And if I see a recurring problem, I'll make a meta post about it.
(Although lately I've been spending most of my time just in this chat, for personal reasons.)
4:51 AM
Dee Pennyway has a very important Twitter thread about immersion, safety, theatre, stage combat, and life rivers.
> Modiphius Entertainment are excited to announce that under licence from Gearbox Software LLC, they are creating a tabletop roleplaying game, HOMEWORLD: Revelations, based on the popular Homeworld video game franchise. modiphius.com/homeworld.html
Brandon's SpoOooOoky Sale 2019: Discover the justice of monsters, the bonds of magic, the taste of dreams, the love of beasts, and more in this collection of games and poetry!
All of KiennaS's games on itchio now have community copies: "These are limited copies for marginalized folx/people in need, and there's an option for others to donate to add more copies."
The first Swordsfall RP Adventure: The Ebon Expedition
The Icarus by Nicholas Masyk of Monkey's Paw Games is a scifi incursion for the Trophy RPG: The Icarus has re-emerged after eons of drifting through dark space. What unimaginable salvage lies within that rotting hull?
The beta version of Sundo - The Second Flight: We, Once Mortal by Pammu, is available for free to playtesters.
Graveyard Smash: a monster party trpg by Levi Phipps is a one-page hack of Grant Howitt's Goat Crashers inspired by Monster Mash. Dr Fricklestone’s throwing the party of the century, and you’re… not invited. But to hell with him. You’re going and gonna have the best time of your life! Unlife? Whatever.
5:10 AM
@BESW Ooooh
I assumed people would be interested in that, inasmuch as it's a video game I've vaguely heard of so it's probably really popular.
I was gonna link Kazumi Chin's Generation Ark, a free scifi game about migration and refugees, but then I saw their game Magical Cats in Various Lighting Conditions which @Ash absolutely needs to know exists... then I remembered they also wrote Malinche's Dream and Doggos & Doggos.
So just, you know, check out Kazumi Chin's games.
Most faq answers say something like "X kind of answer will be downvoted, commented on, and/or deleted." with no explanation of who will be doing the downvoting. As far as I am aware users are free to up/down vote any answer for any reason. Is there a mechanism for enforcing the idea that users should up/down vote certain answers?
It would be other users doing the up/downvoting. Nothing really enforces that, but nothing needs to. In theory, these policies and protocols are created based on the userbase, and how the majority* of active users want the site to work.
And in practice?
There is no way to enforce voting habits, except for automatic systems which clamp down on serial voting behaviour like downvoting many of one person's answers in an astonishingly short amount of time.
The Stack Exchange is built around the "wisdom of crowds," where a few errant downvotes are just noise in the system and the majority of voters reflect usefulness/quality. In practice this is mostly what we see happening, with some outliers for particularly emotionally invested, controversial, or confusing topics where people are still trying to vote that way but may be distracted by their connection to the content.
There are two soft mechanics for encouraging responsible voting: downvotes on answers cost 1 rep apiece, and there are rep-based caps on each user's votes per day.
Some sites, if they see obviously bad voting habits becoming prevalent (such as, say, an extremely unreasonable number of upvotes on poor answers that have funny pictures in them), run education campaigns to try and help users understand the purpose and effect of voting. These are entirely grass-roots efforts, unsupported by the system, and have varying levels of effectiveness depending on the nature of the campaign and the user base.
The vast majority of Stack Exchange users never know meta policies or Stack guidelines exist, we're lucky if they glance at the (woefully inadequate) tour. So the Stack is designed, with surprisingly high success, to just operate on the interface giving people a sense of what to do and placing potentially disruptive privileges behind reputation gates with the assumption that reputation is a reasonable indicator of personal investment.
eg, you can't upvote until you've got 15 rep (that's three upvotes and no downvotes on an answer, or eight upvotes and no downvotes on a question), and you can't downvote until you've got 125 rep.
(with an exception for being able to vote on answers to your own questions because... yeah, that makes sense and still reasonably limits potential for harm)
5:39 AM
The two things that frustrate me about this are 1. If I ask a question it is up to other people to decide if the answers are good even if I am explicit and emphatic about my question. 2. I am constantly being told to read meta, read the faq, when it doesn't even matter because even if my question is perfect it is up to people who don't care about meta to upvote/downvote.

What good is it to be told "do this and then answers will be offtopic and you will get what you want" when voters dont care about offtopic and maybe dont even know what it entails...
Yup, it's a rough trip and the Stack Exchange format isn't very interested in satisfying the people who ask questions. You get to mark one answer "Accepted" which is your way of showing which answer was most useful to you, and everybody who wanders by gets to vote on their notions of quality.
Your accepted answer gets stickied to the top of the answer list, regardless of voting.
The really high-traffic sites have that problem, especially when the questions have attention-grabbing titles
Again, the Stack is super interested in averaging out the wisdom of crowds. No single user, not even the question-asker, gets to override the crowd's collective voice.
"Your accepted answer gets stickied to the top of the answer list, regardless of voting." does it? I haven't noticed this on my own threads. Does it work differently if I look at a thread where I asked the question?
Currently, the bulk of the RPG.SE active userbase is (relatively) small enough that the meta policies should coincide with the expectations of the active users. Occasionally mass patterns diverge from existing meta policies, and that warrants further discussion and revisiting those policies.
5:48 AM
Hmm. Lemme see if I can track down one of my own questions where the accepted answer isn't highest voted.
In my experience that isn't true. Overall I have found asking questions to be incredibly frustrating and suggestions from others are very disconnected from the situation :/
I know some of the alternate sort algorithms break the sticky.
@jgn Frustrating because you're dissatisfied with the answers, or because of "helpful" comments from other users? Or some other reason?
Ah, the default is "votes", if you change it to "active" it sticks the accepted!
Though the answer still shows up as hidden/greyd out
Even when I sort this question by votes I see the accepted one at the top.
Same with this one.
5:51 AM
Doesn't work on mine, try this rpg.stackexchange.com/questions/157794/…
Could be because the net rating is negative. Those are usually auto-sorted to the end.
The tooltips on sorting doesn't give any help. Its a mystery to me what the different sort modes actually do...
Huh, I've never encountered that before. I'm guessing Mike's got the right of it. The Stack is very blunt about caring about its accumulated ratings more than individual approvals, because answers are for everyone who will ever ask the question and not just the one who happened to ask it first.
And I think it's important to mention that you're asking questions about historically controversial hot-button topics here. RAW/RAI was central to a massive amount of drama a few years ago, it's likely that's related to the extreme responses you're seeing.
I've had similar issues with Fate in the past:
Q: The gremlin in our answers: "Fate is narrative" answers to mechanical Fate questions

BESWIt seems like there's a gremlin in the Fate answers. He bites without warning, no one is immune, and while he'd been quiet for some time, he's back now. And he's making it hard to get good answers, which makes people not want to ask at all (I'll explain that at the end, after I've defined what I'...

5:57 AM
Maybe this site is not for me, there is just such a huge barrier to entry. I can't ask about RAW/RAI, I can't figure out the rules, I can't even understand how answers are sorted without reading a huge post. Perhaps if I had joined 5 years ago and kept up with each incremental level of complexity and controversy and understood all the historical context I would find it easier!
You can ask about RAW/RAI. If left unspecified, most users tend to assume RAW only.
Usually, yeah. But jgn is asking about stuff like hiding rules (always a problem in D&D) and whether there are clear rules about habits at the table like who rolls the dice?
Maybe I am unlucky but in every question I have asked users do not tend to assume RAW. Often they completely discard the rules at the first available opportunity without so much as an acknowledgement.
If none of the answers are satisfactory, you could wait a while, and leave it without an accepted answer.
6:00 AM
@BESW The fact that the meaning of "the player rolls" cannot be decisively agreed on, and you clearly even disagree with the most upvoted and accepted answer on that question, seems to me to indicate some very deep problems here.
These are frame challenges:
Q: How do we handle a desire to challenge the frame of a question?

mxyzplkSometimes, someone asks a question that seems like it might suffer from the XY Problem (asking about your attempted solution instead of your actual problem) and you want to point that out. Or you feel that something about the question frame makes answering the question invalid and the only tenab...

@jgn Wait, I clearly disagree with that?
If an answer is presenting an out-of-frame solution to a question without first justifying why it's moving outside the question's frame, that's worth leaving a comment linking to the meta about how to do that. This will encourage other people to downvote it too, and in extreme cases you can flag it for mod attention as low-quality or the like.
@BESW Yeah? You called it a "habit at the table" when (as I'm sure you know) page 1 of the PHB clearly states " Players roll dice to resolve [actions]". It isn't a table habit, it's clearly there in the rules right?
[shrug] I don't play 5e, I haven't read the rules, but I know from experience that table habits transcend rulebooks and no amount of "but the book says" is going to change that.
@jgn As for the sorting thing, the TL;DR is that the accepted answer won't get sorted to the top if it has a net negative rating
I feel like linking the meta doesn't really help and as others said, it isn't my job. I ask for RAW and get a houserule upvoted to the top. What can I do? Accept that my question will never be answered? It's frustrating
6:04 AM
You're asking about a table habit which happens to, in this one particular instance, have a rule written about it.
@jgn Nothing wrong with an unanswered question. The point of the question is to help the asker. If the asker wants to provide a self-written answer, that's their call. This site doesn't establish what is canonically right or wrong.
@BESW There is a rule, and saying that despite that table habits transcend the rulebook seems to say the rules don't matter. How can your reconcile this with the question stating "By Raw" and "I am only asking about RAW". Play how you want to play, but please answer the question that is asked ;;
I'm not the person to argue with about that? I'm observing trends, commiserating, and trying to talk about why the thing is happening. Explaining a bad trend is not the same as agreeing with it.
The trend of ignoring rules in favour of houserules is the same trend that is frustrating. I feel that your language is in this same vein, ignoring that there actually is official wording saying that players should roll dice, and claiming that it's just up to the table. Whether or not that is your intent, that is how I read it.
You asked what you can do about it, and I gave an option with solid links showing your frustration is acknowledged in the policies. I'm saying that ignoring your requests for rules analysis is wrong, and I'm talking about why people are doing it because understanding why people do things is part of maybe changing behaviour.
6:09 AM
I see, sorry I misunderstood.
I don't really see a practical solution. If an offtopic answer is being upvoted then telling people it is offtopic and should be downvoted isn't going to solve anything for me. Especially when even if someone does make a good answer it gets burred. Not to mention I don't know anything about this RAW/RAI controversy...
You've asked what you can do, and you've been given options by experienced users who have seen them be effective tools for addressing exactly these kinds of situations.
Correct. No single user has the power to enforce other users' voting patterns. You could comment that it's a bad answer, and explain why it's bad, and hope others agree, but beyond that the voting isn't something you can dictate.
Linking to the meta in a comment is an educational tool. It shows the voters that there's a policy they may have been unaware of.
I've seen it work in the past.
It makes me doubt they are successful when they come with assumptions that are untrue in my experience.
I will try it and see. I don't have high hopes but that doesn't mean I shouldn't try.
The Stack Exchange's interface and official policies are not designed to be friendly to question-askers. RPG.SE tries to mitigate that, but there's only so much that can be done with policy to deform a rigid system.
6:35 AM
Is there a site like SE but focused on answering questions and perhaps with a focus on RAW/RAI rather than houserules?
Q: I've been told my question is better suited to a forum, but where should I go?

SevenSidedDieI asked a question that got closed for not being suited for the Q&A format that RPG.SE uses, and was told that my question would work better on a discussion forum. Where can I find an RPG discussion forum well suited to my question? Guidance for answers This should be a curated list of direc...

I think they're asking the opposite - That there are too many houserule approaches, and they'd prefer RAW/RAI only
Yeah, but the answer is the same: our curated collection of alternate resources.
Thanks, I will also accept personal recommendations :)
I am sure I'm not the first person to be interested in rules discussions haha
Unfortunately I can't help with personal recommendations at all, I've long since departed from game systems where the RAW/RAI divide even makes sense.
6:51 AM
Well it's not so much that RAW/RAI divide, it's the RAW/RAI vs Houserule divide.
Same smell from over here.
Is that so? That makes me curious :P What does a game system without rules look like?
Or do you only play homebrew perhaps?
A homebrew game system with homebrew rules is still a game system with rules
Sure, but it doesnt suffer from RAW/RAI vs Houserule. Although I guess once the game starts the houserules become the rules, and anything apart from that is houserules
I play games like Cthulhu Dark and Cozy Town where the rules are tight, coherent, and don't really have room for subsystems or items or spells--there's nothing to homebrew.
And I play games like Atomic Robo and Masters of Umdaar where the rules are tight and coherent but expect players to add their own subsystems, items, and spells as part of the baseline game experience--homebrew isn't extra, it's central to play.
And I play games like Mnemonic and We Forest Three and Space Goblins which are more like guided narratives than open-ended systems of play. Homebrewing a system like that would be hacking it to produce a different system entirely.
7:00 AM
I guess we have different opinions on what RAW/RAI and houserules are. Any system with rules has RAW, any system designed consciously has RAI, and any game where players are expected to enforce the rules can be houseruled.
To me anyway :)
Monopoly for example has a ton of RAW/RAI debates and common houserules.
Some systems give the DM & players more room to fill in with their own rules and mechanics, on top of a baseline framework. Others are meant to be complete systems out of the box.
As does Uno which has even tighter rules.
I mean... I guess? But it's not a useful distinction in any of the games I play.
@MikeQ and I would call those filled in rules/mechanics houserules, wouldn't you?
They are after all rules that vary between groups and aren't part of the ruleset.
I don't need that vocabulary to talk about my games because they aren't meaningful categories within the epistemology of the games I play.
7:04 AM
I would call them potatoes, because I'm a nonconformist and don't see the point of semantics disputes
Rules As Intended was only ever necessary for my games when I was playing in vast sprawling rulesets that were confusing or even unplayable as written.
So it's not so much that talking about RAW/RAI/Houserules doesn't make sense, it's that people don't really do it. And for MikeQ, they just do whatever they want.
I'm playing the game at my table, not the game in the developer's head; the game in their head was only ever important when the game in my hands was insufficient.
@jgn RAW is easier to quantify, you just cite whatever is written by the designers
@BESW or maybe it's more fair to say "when language is insufficient to convey the rules (be it the fault of the designer, editor, or the chose language"
You may be surprised to learn that one of the most common uses of RAI is to back up RAW when someone is confused, even if the language is straightforward and unambiguous.
7:09 AM
I'm very familiar with RAW and RAI, thank you.
But you asked about my gaming habits in relation to them.
I think the conversation progressed since then and you made a number of statements that seemed to me that you are perhaps not as knowledgeable about this kind of thing. Sorry if you feel insulted.
Similarly, we don't homebrew; the best term I've found for what we do is drifting.
It's system modifications to produce a different kind of game, because modular modifications are either nonsensical within the nature of the system or already incorporated into the game out of the box.
@jgn The issue I see here is that the provoking question (about hiding) asks for an official-text-only explanation about one of the less-quantified facets of the system, which is usually handled based on so-called "common sense" interpretations of those rules. If you think someone's interpretation is invalid, then downvote and move on.
@jgn It doesn't work on your own answers, no.
@MikeQ That interpretation is actually one that troubles me. The rules are very clear and explicit about how Hiding works. People answering with houserule solutions is unhelpful. There is nothing ambiguous or confusing about Hiding, only that people houserule it so much that the actual rules are unfamiliar to some.
7:18 AM
We have a sufficient number of questions about hiding to indicate that it is unclear. Maybe it's not unclear to you, and if so, that's great for you; but it is a topic a lot of people are confused by.
Yup, there are tons of people confused. Like I said: "There is nothing ambiguous or confusing about Hiding, only that people houserule it so much that the actual rules are unfamiliar to some."
Maybe they're devising houserules because they find the provided rules confusing
I have seen in a number of questions that webcasts like Critical Roll houserule a lot of things, but it's not really clear to viewers.
@jgn No, what I said is nothing whatsoever like what you said.
@MikeQ Maybe, I'm sure if someone did find Hiding to be confusing and came to this site to look for answers it would only increase their confusion :))) Which is part of why I am interested in a rules oriented site instead of a houserules site.
7:21 AM
You're saying it isn't confusing, and all those poor people out there have just gotten themselves confused with their own houserules, the silly fools.
So just... a website version of strictly the official rules?
That's not what I said and I think you know it Miniman.
Whereas I am electing to not be condescending and accept that if a bunch of people are confused by something, that means it is confusing.
@jgn So what exactly did you mean then? Because there's nothing ambiguous or confusing about the statement you made.
@MikeQ SE but rules only. People asking rules questions, and people answering with rules excerpts. That would be great for me!
@Miniman You say that my statement was not ambiguous or confusing, and I agree. Yet you seem to have become confused. Are you trying to tell me something? Perhaps you are implying that people, like you may well be, purposefully misunderstand the rules to their own ends?
"people houserule it so much that the actual rules are unfamiliar to some" does not mean "people confuse themselves with their own houserules" and I certainly didn't call anyone a silly fool.
@jgn You're still saying that the rules aren't confusing and anyone confused by them has only themselves to blame.
7:25 AM
"People" are a group who learnt D&D from their friends, family, DMs, from watching Critical Roll, and when they had a rules question they went to Reddit, SE, DnDBeyond forums, and perhaps saw someone else's houserules being presented as 'the rules'.
@Miniman No I am not.
ILet's be clear here. If a bunch of people are confused by something, that thing is a confusing thing.
@jgn That is sort of what we have here. If the question specifies that all answers be backed purely by RAW, then it can do that. If an answer fails to do so, then it's a bad answer, and the asker doesn't need to accept it.
Certainly something is confusing, but it is NOT the rules.
It doesn't require you, or me for that matter, to be confused by it.
@jgn So why are so many people confused then?
I think I have done a pretty fair job of trying to explain where the confusion comes from, I don't think you are asking me to copypaste myself again in good faith. Please at least read what I wrote and reply directly to the part that you are questioning.
7:27 AM
@jgn I know many people are confused by this, and I know no-one who has deliberately houseruled it.
@MikeQ Although that may be true in theory, it isn't true in practice. If I ask a question and get 10 replies about houserules and none about RAW then my question isn't answered and I am not better off. Worse still if I confuse a highly upvoted houserule for the rules and accept it, confusing not only myself but anyone else who comes to SE looking for the rules.
You don't get to decide that the rules aren't confusing just because you, personally, don't find them confusing.
@Miniman And yet you get to decide that the rules are confusing? I have yet to see anyone confused by the rules, only confused by houserules that are presented as official rules.
If someone wants the rules, only the rules, and expects that to be sufficient, then they should acquire a copy of the PHB (and/or other official books). If that's what they wanted, then their problem is solved.
@jgn No, I don't get to decide either. A bunch of people being confused decides. That is what the word confusing means.
7:30 AM
@MikeQ That is a facetious statement. Just go ahead and ban RAW/RAI from the site then if you don't understand why someone may ask about them.
@Miniman Yet you are deciding that it is the rules that are confusing them, and not the people passing off houserules as actual rules...
At least afford me the same privilege you give to yourself.
@jgn Yes. Because they asked about the rules.
They didn't do it just for kicks.
These 248 questions don't exist because the rules aren't confusing.
Let me make this clear: asking about the rules does not mean it was the rules that caused the confusion.
People are confused. True.
People are confused about hiding. Also true.
The source of this confusion is the rules. Pure speculation.
Generally speaking, folks ask questions on this site because they are unclear about a rule or situation or other TTRPG. The asker's goal is to get an answer they find sufficient. The point of the site isn't to convince other users that one's views are correct.
@jgn Oh, sure. All of these people, completely independently of each other, read the rules and got confused by some other strange factor.
If you can't or are unwilling to understand the difference then I see no benefit in continuing to talk about it.
I don't appreciate your desire to misread or ignore what I say @Miniman.
7:34 AM
@jgn I'm not misreading or ignoring you. But your belief that literally everyone confused about hiding became so because of houserules makes no sense.
I've never played with houserules for hiding. I've played with plenty of people who were confused about hiding.
And if you're saying that everyone misinterpreted the rules and those misinterpretations are houserules that confused people, misinterpretations are a manifestation of confusion.
1. I didn't say that and I think you are purposefully misrepresenting what I say and ignoring any attempt I make to clarify.
2. Your belief that literally everyone confused about Hiding are confused because they found RAW to be confusing makes as much sense as the strawman you are making to represent me.
@jgn So why are so many people confused about hiding, then?
If it's not because of houserules after all, why is it?
"I've never played with houserules for hiding." Is that so? Would you like to test that? I have freshly read about 100 threads about hiding across dozens of forums and I practically know the rules by heart. Are you really confident that you know the rules?
Where is this going?
@Miniman A combination of factors INCLUDING the prevalence of houserules presented as RAW/RAI.
7:37 AM
@jgn Sure. But people didn't deliberately present houserules as RAW. If they presented houserules as RAW, it's because they thought that was RAW. Why did they think that? Well, because they got confused.
What confused them? The rules.
@MikeQ I previously said that people think they know the rules for Hiding, but actually the just know some houserules. Miniman said they know the rules for Hiding and have never played any houserules. I'm sure you can see that if Miniman says the rules they believe to be correct and I spot a problem that would demonstrate how common this problem is.
@jgn That would demonstrate that I was confused by the rules.
Okay. Is Miniman a player or DM at your table? If not, then don't worry about it.
@Miniman the flaw in your logic is that you claim it was RAW that confused them. They thought it was RAW because it was presented to them as RAW.
@jgn By whom?
7:38 AM
@Miniman It would demonstrate you were confused, not that RAW is at fault.
Miniman you are trying to get me to talk into circles, I already gave a list of possible people that may have mislead them on the rules.
Some malicious actor that read the rules, understood them, then deliberately mislead people?
That is possible in the case of malicious rules lawyers, but I already gave some more plausible answers.
Don't keep making me answer the same questions over and over. If you are unhappy with the answer be clear as to why.
It's also possible that folks stick to a certain ruling because they find it works for them, and don't really care if it's exactly what the book says
My first group consisted of 5 people who had never played before, or watched any RPG podcasts. We had to have a discussion about the hiding rules, because they confused people.
Where did that confusion come from? Are we just stupid?
@MikeQ Absolutely, I believe that to be a common cause. Why look up a rule when what you think already works for you and no one is saying anything to the contrary?
@Miniman Good question. If you can recall the points of contention I could try make a guess. I would presume that they didn't live in quite as isolated a bubble as you may think. By the way, just to be 100% clear incase this has been forgotten, this was all about dnd5e
7:43 AM
@jgn Obviously this is about D&D 5e. And it had literally just came out. We weren't "living in a bubble", we were normal people, most of whom had played some edition of D&D before.
The main point of contention was whether you could hide, then attack with a ranged weapon, and still gain the benefit of hiding. We also discussed whether you would still be hidden afterwards, and whether you could hide, then run out and attack someone in melee and still gain the benefit of hiding.
Oh what a coincidence, that's a question I recently asked and one that was mentioned above!
Do you remember what you decided?
Do you think that it's possible that your experience with 4e, 3.5e, PF, etc, may have lead to some preconceptions about how RAW should function?
@jgn Yes to the first, no to the second, and no to the third under normal circumstances but possibly yes to the third under normal circumstances.
@jgn Highly unlikely - I've never had a clue about the 3.5e rules for hiding in combat.
Would it surprise you to learn that the rules are very explicit about the fact that you will be hiding after attacking?
Maybe not since you were already very vocal about your confusion and the confusion of your group ^^
I guess in the end even so I can't prove that the source of the confusion was preconception, but thanks for indulging me.
@jgn I'm not really interested in debating this specific point with you. But since you're the only person I've ever met who believes that interpretation, assuming you believe it's the right one, the rules must be confusing, since everyone else gets it wrong.
Haha, well I think you are still making a logical jump between "X is confusing therefore Y must have been the source of the confusion"!
I need to see some kind of causal or logical link between the two to accept that
7:52 AM
@jgn And I fail to see how you can fail to spot the only common link between all these instances of confusion, but sure.
Interesting statement
Have you ever studied statistics by chance?
Or that "hiding" being confusing and "the rules for hiding" being confusing are the same thing, since the game is the rules.
@jgn Yes.
Have you heard of "survivor-ship bias", "texas sharpshooter fallacy", or "correlation does not imply causation"?
@Miniman Have you also studied statistics by determinism?
@MikeQ No.
7:55 AM
I am happy to explain briefly Miniman.
@jgn Yes, of course. But "correlation does not imply causation" doesn't magically mean that something else must be the cause.
"I fail to see how you can fail to spot the only common link between all these instances of confusion"
"the rules must be confusing, since everyone else gets it wrong"
"Survivorship bias or survival bias is the logical error of concentrating on the people or things that made it past some selection process and overlooking those that did not"
"The Texas sharpshooter fallacy is an informal fallacy which is committed when differences in data are ignored, but similarities are overemphasized"
"In statistics, the phrase "correlation does not imply causation" refers to the inability to legitimately deduce a cause-and-effect relationship between two variables solely on the basis of an observed association or correlation between them."
Yes, I have no absolute scientific proof that the rules are confusing. But you likewise have no such proof that they aren't.
You don't have a confuso-meter? That device that measures how confusing something is, in metric units?
In short, you are observing only people who are confused and claiming since they all probably read the rules, the rules are probably at fault. However, people who are not confused also read the rules. You also ignore that people who read the rules (everyone) also probably talk to their fellow players, and DM about the rules, which itself is a common factor too.
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