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12:17 AM
@Axoren sounds genuinely fun
It is :D
Looking at the rogue subclasses, scout looks abuseable fun
12:34 AM
Thief is probably my favorite because of Use Object as a bonus action
Wand of Magic Missiles? Use it twice per turn.
@Axoren The space dwelling Starlord is a better rogue archetype.
I think I found a mistake in the Sage Advice Compendium.
@ThomasMarkov Specifically?
See my new question
You're making me work, Thomas.
12:44 AM
Q: Is there any way for the Draconic Bloodline Sorcerer’s Elemental Affinity to improve Eldritch Blast, or is the Sage Advice Compendium just wrong?

Thomas MarkovThe Draconic Bloodline Sorcerer’s elemental affinity ability says: Starting at 6th level, when you cast a spell that deals damage of the type associated with your draconic ancestry, you can add your Charisma modifier to one damage roll of that spell. The cantrip eldritch blast deals force damag...

Thanks, lol
@ThomasMarkov I almost +1'ed for that title
It looks like a good question, but I don’t have time to research right now
@ThomasMarkov Are you interested in any way or every way? I can think of two
12:47 AM
@Medix2 please don’t tell me this is a list question. I’ll never be able to face NautArch.
@Medix2 everything you got buddy
Isn't there an arcane tradition or an invocation that changes spell damage types?
The easy examples are literally anything that adds fire damage, or most of the other types for that matter
Awakened spellbook, but that doesn't work for cantrips.
Oh wait... then the spell wouldn't... curse my own answers
I think I would argue it can never be correct
@ThomasMarkov Yeah. I don't think it's a good example because of the damage type.
@Medix2 What adds a fire damage roll to cantrips?
12:54 AM
That's probably the fastest Downvote I've gotten on the site.
-2 almost instantly.
I can make that -3 if you really need me to. Just link me to the answer, and I'll hop on it.
@Axoren I think the second one was a missclick. It's showing +2/-1 here.
@Axoren I +1’d you, it was some good insight.
@GcL I'm sure something adds [insert type here], probably quite a few features
I +1'd you because I literally was hitting "Submit answer" with the same answer.......
12:56 AM
@Medix2 I can't think of anything that adds a roll for elemental damage to cantrips.
I gotta go find where I argued it could never benefit from such a feature...
I think there's a monk elemental way that adds elemental damage, but I don't know if that would add it to cantrips.
@ThomasMarkov by the way the question is dangerous because it's easy to answer guessing designer intentions here
If I homebrewed a feature to allow you to change damage types on cantrips, would that be best as a feat or something else (class ability, etc)? I can’t really see what else it could be though...
so instead of providing it in answers or comments, let me add: they might have also wanted to make a more general statement than just for Elemental Affinity, using it as an example.
So anything that ever is published that lets you add something to one damage roll of a spell is kinda covered there.
12:59 AM
Yeah this I think is why I'd argue eldritch blast can never qualify because Elemental Affinity requires you to know that a spell will deal X damage type when you cast it. But I've gotta go now
@BardicWizard It gets talked about for reskinning the blast to fit some thematic element of a character. Mostly, is this fair to do? Since they're usually going from force to something that has a lot more instances of resistance, it's almost always a slight mechanical disadvantage.
For Eldritch Blast, it has been discussed here already.
@GcL thanks
@Someone_Evil by the way, why aren't links to questions parsed to the question name in comments, like they are in question/answers? :( (tagging you because you seem to be the most likely mod to know that hahaha)
Different parser. Comments also don't accept html tags like <del>to do a strike through.
1:06 AM
-2 as in rep lost, not -2 votes. I only notice them because I start getting +8s instead of +10s.
@HellSaint Yeah, I tried to craft the question to avoid sounding like “why did JC say this”.
Annoys my OCD moreso than my pride.
@ThomasMarkov either way the answer is: The sage advice is not wrong. It might be vacuously true, but it is still true.
"If Elemental affinity applies to Eldritch Blast then only one beam is improved" is always a true statement, no matter if elemental affinity can ever apply to eldritch blast.
Also, thanks for the edit @HellSaint Sorry about beating you on that.
Given that you had a proper link to the source, I feel like you were gonna be more ready to make our point than I was.
@Axoren haha yeah :P I got late because I was linking stuff haha
By the way the two related questions I linked under Thomas' question may improve your answer by backing it up that currently there is no way to change the damage type of eldritch blast.
1:11 AM
All of you are neglecting possibility of Wizards coming out with Force Dragons
Although there may be some obscure way of adding fire damage, which we will find out in the next few days with a random answer from someone who spent the last 3 days researching it
@HellSaint No way yet
@Axoren Currently :P
@ThomasMarkov Actually I kinda am because it feels unlikely they are going to change a core sorcerer subclass like that, even if to add a new option.
On the other hand, a Wizard new subclass which allows to change the damage type or a new Eldritch Invocation that allows the warlock to choose any damage type for their EB or something like that doesn't seem too far fetched
> Your package is still on the way but may arrive later than expected. We're sorry for the inconvenience and we'll deliver it as soon as possible.
Wizard Subclass: Furballmancer. All spells deal hair damage instead of their original damage type. Nothing resists or is immune to hair damage. [picture of elf with split ends]
@HellSaint Why you gotta call me out like that XD
1:17 AM
@Medix2 I should have written someone (@Medix2)
Hey, can somebody in elemental plane of math help me out a bit? I could use a hand
...Not literally!
Quick sanity check: info you'd need for a D&D5e one-shot happening in two days: rough theme/outline, date/time, platform/medium, character options (incl. sources), equipment options.... Anything else?
(We've all played together before, so houserules/&c. are not a concern.)
Starting level?
(Got it, forgot to list it here.)
@BardicWizard I’ll hop in
1:28 AM
If it was my group I'd be telling them a uniting characteristic for their characters, like "must be a member of the Adventurer's Guild" or "must have a personal connection to the Church of Wee Jas" in order to help unite the party and hook them for the adventure, so we don't spend the session negotiating "but my guy doesn't trust your guy" and "my guy doesn't have a reason to care about that."
@BESW Good call.
@nitsua60 Normally we'd be making characters together as part of the session, but I get the impression that's not in the cards for this one.
@BESW Unfortunately, no. Tight time-crunch.
I think you know my preference: we'd be full-on building the world together before even thinking about characters =)
@HellSaint I think we rolled back to the most recent simultaneously :) But you got there a smidge first.
@NautArch Yeah I was checking the timeline. After I noticed the question had a failed reopen vote (3 leave closed vs 1 reopen) in the previous state, and had 4 reopen votes at its current/new state, it got quite clear to me that the community prefers the new version :P
1:35 AM
I'd also want to make sure they knew about anything unusual that would influence tactical decisions, like an unusually large number of undead in the module, or an unusually small number of targets that would be vulnerable to precision attacks.
@HellSaint and honestly, i'm all good with making fast answerers redo their answers when it was clear it needed work.
"I rolled a rogue and everything's immune to sneak attack" is a terrible experience.
@BESW Good call--I think I'm going to go paraphrase the first paragraph or two of the module, the "blah blah is an adventure set in hoity-town, where the adventurers try to baz a series of foos."
@nitsua60 I usually shortcut that with, "characters that don't have a very strong motivation to do the quest as a member of the part are disqualified" and I usually yoink a pregen or two from a paid module in that event.
Yeah, that's good. 'Cause like, "set in a town" means your alpine-specialized wilderness survivalist is gonna feel a bit out of place and you should be ready for that when you make the choice.
1:39 AM
@nitsua60 Sweet! Imma gonna be a Foo Fighter.
@nitsua60 Especially for one shots. Is this a paid for vignette or you made it?
@GcL none of the above? I'm playtesting something someone else wrote and will be sold later =)
Speaking of which, @nitsua60, I've got something you might like to playtest but it requires taking a medium-long walk and I don't know if that's currently part of your routines.
@BESW Medium-long walks are a lot of what we do these days!
Excellent. Walkies with Grim link incoming. It's designed for solo or twosies play but I'd be interested to see how it works with larger groups too.
Check your Discord DMs some time.
1:44 AM
@BESW My campaigns all start with: "You are all friends and trust each other. I don't care how. You guys can figure it out, or you can just accept it. Thanks."
@nitsua60 Music so that when there's a pause, it doesn't interrupt people's attention
@HellSaint yeah, that can work. For structured adventures though, I like to give a prompt that also feeds into the kind of campaign we'll be playing.
Unless I'm playing a campaign where PvP is an interesting or major part of it (like when I play CoS :P)
Oct 19 '17 at 22:16, by BESW
Re: organic plot hooks, I ran a couple campaigns where PCs were members of an adventurer's guild. Every major town had a chapter house, and one of the services it offered was an "adventurers needed" board where people could put up reward posters, requests for armed escort, wanted posters, and so forth.
And honestly? Do it by concrete scenes. It's a one-shot, the players cannot be allowed to have that much freedom unless you want it to be a four-shot.
If you can, at least.
1:46 AM
@BESW We did that. We also tied leveling up to returning to a chapter house and being assessed.
@HellSaint I like that.
@Axoren Agreed. My one-shots need to be a lot more planned than other sessions. I tried to run a christmas one-shot with the amount of planning I would normally do for my campaign and I basically lost the entire plot thread because I ran out of time.
I've also done "you're all looking for passage on a ship to the same place" and "you're all members of the same military unit," etc.
@linksassin This is one thing I really appreciate about games like Cthulhu Dark, they provides structures that keep one-shots one-shotty.
@linksassin I've had, uh, *thinks for a bit* every one-shot I've been in not be a one-shot
But that's also cuz the groups I've played with explicitly agreed that it could be expanded if the need arises
@Medix2 I've had more success if I preplan scenes and pacing. Managed to run a one-shot for 24 people with a co-dm and successfully completed it in one session.
1:51 AM
When I'm left on my own, one-session stories usually become two or three sessions.
But with a good structure like Cthulhu Dark, Golden Sky Stories, Goblin Court...
@nitsua60 Did you cover "character level" in there?
@BESW OMG my daughter is going to love it. I might have to wedge that into tomorrow's schedule.
@JoelHarmon Yeah. No. I had it in my list, but forgot to mention it in the list here. And I'm no longer a mod, so I can't abuse space-time by going back and making me have mentioned it =)
@nitsua60 Presumably you could just use your previously-held space-time powers to go forward in time and fix it, then return to our past.
"What do we want? Time travel! When do we want it? It's irrelevant!"
@JoelHarmon I dunno. I was paying attention pretty hard when the Ancient One and Banner were chatting, and I'd hate to dust half of you "accidentally."
@JoelHarmon But would that be our past? That's the question
@JoelHarmon What do we want? Airplane noises! When do you want them? Neooowwww
1:58 AM
The last one-shot I ran was the following:
- Party shows up at a travelers pit-stop in the woods. It's a tourist attraction.
- Woods has a legendary past. Used to be full of monsters until some hero cleaned it out.
- Party stays the night before they move on to their destination. Sounds like a storm rolling in.
- Morning hits, party gets breakfast. Children bust in, says that they just escaped a troll.
- Proprieter's son led the troll away so that the other kids could escape and get help. Son resembles the hero from legend.
@Medix2 And is it a multiple timelines view of time travel?
"You're all strangers who (maybe) unite by coincidence in session 1, and (maybe) within a few sessions you'll start to trust each other"
(this always backfires. don't actually use this premise.)
Start with everybody having amnesia, definitely can't go wrong... Utterly impossible to backfire for sure...
Role-playing a smart and cocky troll was fun, because the party goes really spooked the first time they hit it with fire and noticed that it was still healing
@Axoren What type of troll does that "troll" mean? Oh darn... Kept reading and got an answer
1:59 AM
Eventually, the Party threw a tarp over the troll to block the rain and the Wizard followed up his cheesy one-liner with a Burning Hands
Then, we still had time, so I had another scene prepared
(( @KorvinStarmast , kudos and thanks to you and mxy for the extensive help on that orc alignment question earlier! ))
EXTRA: Boss Fight: Undead T-Rex. Party learns after returning the son to his father that the reason the kids were out so deep in the woods were because they were looking for one of the monsters the legendary hero killed: a T-Rex. Apparently, it followed the smell of the Troll Blood to the lodge.
Always have extra prepared.
@Axoren Don't those things need a wizard with a boom box riding them?
@GcL Polka music?
@Axoren Is that the fabled 10th level spell?
2:06 AM
@Axoren It might also have been found in a Mausoleum of Natural History in the forest of Chitown?
@Medix2 That's "Cookies for the DM"
Polka is lit, no joke. My discord server has a channel dedicated to sitting in and jamming to Polka.
@Medix2 Extra Content, 11th Level. If you cast it, Mystra dies so that you can't cast it anymore out of spite.
"No! You can't just cast a spell and become a god!" "Hehe, weave go brrrrrrr"
@Axoren Traditional or Weird Al?
@JoelHarmon You essentially just asked Classical or Pop
Both, got it.
Yeah, that sounds like both to me.
2:11 AM
I prefer Frankie Yankovic (feat. Kanye West)
@Axoren In any case, I was intending to reference a particular urban fantasy series.
... Jojo's?
@Axoren Dresden.
I'm only at the beginning of book 2
I should pick it back up. I really liked the show when it was on.
@Axoren Forget most of what I said above.
2:19 AM
But a detail like that might have escaped me.
The show wasn't bad, but didn't line up with the books pretty much at all.
The books improve markedly after the third one. The first two are a bit formulaic.
2:31 AM
Well, yeah. I think it was the author trying to break into his new element.
Jim Butcher's only really known for Dresden and Codex, right?
@Axoren He also did Aeronauts Windlass, but I think only book 1 is out on that, and it's fair to say that's lesser known.
Oh wow, that's fairly recent.
I thought he was mostly inactive at this point
My wife tells me he got divorced then remarried, and moved once or twice. In the interim, he didn't have a writing room set up. That all added up to a dry spell.
Oof, all of that is really rough
His most recent Dresden came out a week or so ago, and the next one is coming out in about two months. I'm told (wife again) that it was originally one book before he and the publisher agreed it worked better as two.
2:40 AM
The only reason I stopped reading Dresden was because I stopped commuting.
Damn, I just realized how bad Corona did me dirty.
Clearly not as bad as others
I liked the first couple books okay, but then the series got increasingly miserable and I just lost the ability to keep ignoring the other problems it already had.
@Axoren I swear there's one other thing I've read of his.
Now I'm reading the Peter Grant novels and they're so much better.
@BESW What do you prefer about them?
I'm caught up on Dresden Files, but I'm unfamiliar with Peter Grant.
One of my hang-ups with The Dresden Files is the serial escalation. I preferred the earlier books because they were essentially local crime.
And I suppose that appeals to my enjoyment of crime procedurals and I don't have to deal with the real life hang-ups that come with the crime procedural genre.
3:05 AM
I forget which edition, but traveler has very nice character gen which naturally slots characters together
You take a career, and every 4 years you roll for an event. Maybe the character dies (unlikely) or you gain a skill/talent
Afterwards, you work through all events, and figure out which other characters were at each event
Maybe you were given a military medal by a noble, or rescued a civilian. The other PC's are those nobles or civilians
MGT (1 or 2) has that, don't know about other publishers'.
(Though, of course, the notion--once expressed--is basically already ported to any Traveller edition.)
That sounds somewhat main character-ish. Which isn't bad because one fault I feel D&D suffers from is the assumption that everyone wants to be The Protagonist.
And I don't think I make a good protagonist.
3:41 AM
@JoelHarmon I mean. You want the stuff I like that the Peter Grant novels do, or the stuff I don't like about Dresden that Peter Grant doesn't do?
(actually, not sure I'm reading your comment right. nvm.)
Here, I'll copy-paste a pitch I shared in a media-recommendations thread:
> Ben Aaronovitch's "Rivers of London" series (also the "PC Grant" or "Peter Grant" series) are urban fantasy murder mysteries about a young Fula-English police detective discovering that magic is real but poorly understood. Some people will be attracted to it for the supernatural worldbuilding and the way magic is simultaneously rigorous and poorly understood, but my greatest love of the series is how it presents Britain through Grant's eyes: as a police officer, as the son of a jazz man and a housecleaner, as a student of architectural history, as a Londoner with family in Sierra Leone.
4:21 AM
Ajey Pandey wrote a #TabletopChopShop twitter thread about "making ttrpg mechanics bad...on purpose!"
4:39 AM
@nitsua60 For people who want Golden Era Pratchett, I also have to recommend Ursula Vernon. She's got a lot of the same heart, and more than a hint of the same voice.
And if she's read King and Card, then I wouldn't feel like I had to worry about the more intense and intimate bits in some of Vernon's novels published under the T Kingfisher name.
@NautArch For the Stack Exchange, that's a radical and revolutionary attitude.
5:26 AM
I could use a quick pointer, if someone doesn’t mind: are there any games that use 2d6 for most rolls, and 3d6 drop lowest/highest for the equivalent of D&D5e advantage/disadvantage?
I’m trying to come up with a good core mechanic for a game and I like the distribution of values on 2d6, so I want to see what’s already been done.
@BardicWizard Nothing precisely like that that I know of. But it probably exists since there are some many d6 based systems.
Forged in the dark uses 1 or more d6 and you take the highest.
@linksassin link please? I need to do research on my competitors (not really...)
Most of the d6 pool games I use, count successes rather than summing results.
Stars without Number uses 2d6 as the core mechanic.
@BESW Yep. That's my experience as well.
It wouldn't be wrong to say that Lasers & Feelings uses 2d6, +/- 1d6, even though that's not how it's presented. But it's also a success-counting pool.
5:36 AM
I like adding numbers together, so that’s what I want to do (also, it’s for kindergarten math practice)
Note: I’m not the kindergartener. That would be my little brother (who’s getting into rpgs finally!)
@BardicWizard Concepts of "drop the lowest/highest" might be too difficult for that age group.
@linksassin he’s good at math (although I worry if I say “so roll these three and drop the highest”, he might actually drop it on the ground)
5:51 AM
I definitely would've been okay with "here are three numbers and how to choose one to ignore" at that age.
6:37 AM
Been on latex.SE for a few minutes. I always find it incredible how the most complicated answer gets more votes there haha
Like there's a default command to do something in one line that solves the problem and then there is a 15 lines \newcommand that requires 4 different packages to do the same thing and somehow the latter is accepted and upvoted. I'm amazed.
7:09 AM
I made a list answer NautArch would be proud of.
2 hours later…
9:02 AM
Q: Is there any way for the Draconic Bloodline Sorcerer’s Elemental Affinity to improve Eldritch Blast, or is the Sage Advice Compendium just wrong?

Thomas MarkovThe Draconic Bloodline Sorcerer’s elemental affinity ability says: Starting at 6th level, when you cast a spell that deals damage of the type associated with your draconic ancestry, you can add your Charisma modifier to one damage roll of that spell. The cantrip eldritch blast deals force damag...

9:38 AM
@HotRPGQuestions @ThomasMarkov suggested title change "How should I read this Sage Advice Compendium, which implies the Draconic Bloodline Sorcerer's Elemental Affinity can alter EldritchBlast"
becasue it feels that more the problem "how should I read this" vs. Gimme the spell techz
@ThomasMarkov now make a list of questions by NautArch
@HellSaint Don't know if there's a stated reason, but comments aren't really a high priority. There are userscripts for it though (both making them render for you, and having them autoconvert to [title](link) on post)
2 hours later…
11:30 AM
@BESW Thanks for the reply.
You're welcome!
I was really into DF for a while--interest in the franchise helped unite our group in deciding to try a non-D&D system!--but I've become more and more disillusioned with it for itself, and also found so many other stories which scratch the same itch in ways that make me happier.
@JoelHarmon Team Win! :)
Investigative urban specfic novel series I've enjoyed recently include Rivers of London, InCryptid, and Obsidian and Blood.
(And yes, I consider Obsidian and Blood urban fantasy; just because it's set 500 years ago in an Aztec city doesn't make it any less urban.)
I tried Sandman Slim and while it had a lot more potential for interest than DFRPG, it wasn't paying off any of that potential after several novels.
(Slim's even more of a creep than Harry, but at least the text seems aware of Slim's grossness.)
11:53 AM
@BESW Rivers of London is one I've looked at before
InCryptid isn't strictly investigative, but there's usually a strong investigative component, especially in the early novels.
(And it's not always strictly urban either, sometimes they go into rural areas. Cryptids are everywhere!)
@BESW cryptids are my jam
I loved reading the blurbs in WoD source book
Investigative urban specfic is kind of a focus for me across several mediums, and I love silly bombast like Haven, but cryptid stories tend to have... problems... and I appreciate it when the writers are at least aware of the problems? I loved Sanctuary except for how it had all these colonial themes RIGHT THERE but never touched them. So much potential wasted.
@BESW yeah
I love me some cthulhu mythos, not so much keen on some of the themes in lovecrafts own work
I cringe thinking about the horror at redhook, and how I missed them all on the first pass
I would've loved to see a show like Sanctuary dig its teeth into Magnus's obvious failure to progress her sense of scientific ethics past the 19th century.
12:04 PM
@BESW the name Sanctuary rings a bell
Have I recommended Victor LaValle to you? He's a Black horror author who wrote Devil in Silver as a specific response to Horror at Redhook.
I'm poking sci-fi chat about urban fantasy
@BESW no, but it sounds perfect
I loved the concept behind Why HPL wrote HaRh, but the execution is a no
Oh gosh, scifi.se? I hope that chat matured at least a little since I peaced out years ago.
@BESW that chat was killed and forgotten, we've started a fresh since then
@AncientSwordRage I like my title.
12:07 PM
@AncientSwordRage Sanctuary was a SyFy TV series starring Amanda Tapping immediately after her time on Stargate: Atlantis came to an end. She played a Victorian immortal who ran a cryptid hospital/sanctuary/research center.
@AncientSwordRage AGAIN? I stuck around for a while after the Mos Eisley Purge and nothing had changed except a slight reluctance to say the quiet parts out loud anymore.
@ThomasMarkov thats good then
@BESW ah maybe not again
Purged with fire 1152d ago
@BESW thats why it rings a bell
So. Not surprised if it got torched again, the original problems I had with it never got addressed that I could see.
Im rather fond of being able to ask "is Sage Advice just wrong?"
@BESW it's much more friendly now
but reeeeallll quiet
I woke up to two more list answers, wow :D
12:10 PM
Friendly is nice. I had some problems with... assumptions about the nature of discourse and the scope of specfic being really really narrow, and people getting huffy about stuff from outside their comfort zone not being made with their unfamiliarity in mind.
@BESW I'm not sure if I was active or aware when that happened
@Medix2 I thought mine was pretty good.
It was a low-key hum, mostly. People'd get antsy when someone like me or Ash would talk about stuff that wasn't their kind of scifi. Kind of an expectation that what scifi.se usually talked about, was what everyone should consider default, and exotifying anything outside that bubble.
the difference between the Sci-Fi and RPG stack communities, is that the activity of playing a game is much more a binding factor than consuming sci-fi media
so as you say, if you redefine what sci-fi is, it can be a bit 'uncomfortable/antsy' for some people
A similarity is that both hobbies tend to have a lot of loud people who have made their hobby part of their personal identity, and take any disregard for their specific game/franchise as a personal attack.
Like how this chat sometimes gets weird when I mention a game that's about a marginalized experience but isn't trying to teach people unfamiliar with that experience about it.
12:15 PM
@ThomasMarkov I left a comment
@Medix2 i responded
I'll pop into scifi chat for recs.
@ThomasMarkov Oh you just didn't ping me, well truesight for one. The D&D Beyond search might have stuff, I haven't checked. Shadow Sorc multiclass
we decided true seeing didnt interact with any of the bits for optimization purposes, but Ill put it back into my honorable mentions.
Now I'm tempted to just ask "all the ways to acquire or increase the range of darkvision" since it's technically different and I can self answer and credit probably 90% of it to your answer XD
There's apparently the Gloom Stalker ranger and Devil's Sight Invocations or something
12:20 PM
yeah, question asked specifically for spells and magic items.
so i ignored class features.
@NautArch I made a list answer.
Q: Why was this question reopened by a mod?

NautArchThis question on bludgeoning damage with a different stat went through a couple rounds of community closure and reopening. But then it was closed again, but then reopened by a mod rather than our process or a meta and I'd like to understand why. It still feels to me that the bounds are unclear an...

@ThomasMarkov I have a list of 25 so far
25 class features?
25 questions answered by lists
Oh. I thought you meant "25 class features that extend racial dark vision."
12:34 PM
@ThomasMarkov don't make me cut you :P
that escalated rather quickly. :p
@BESW Is it? I had thought that was a primary reason we often closed questions that drew opinion-based answers (but weren't necessarily opinion-based questions?)
@NautArch Exactly: the Stack blames the questions for the answers.
@NautArch I have a list of 30 now XD
@BESW I mean the alternative is? Have diamond moderators delete all the bad answers?
@Medix2 ANd honestly, I wouldn't have a problem with that.
But I think many others (including mods) do.
12:38 PM
@NautArch Clearly somebody did since that one type of question is off-topic
At least when I've asked I've been told designer-reasons questions were made off-topic because they received bad answers and those answers got upvotes which prevented regular site-users from taking action; I've also heard people say they didn't put much work on the table of diamond mods and others say that they did...
@BardicWizard Yes, it's fairly common in purestrain Apocalypse World derivatives. Fellowship calls its adv/disadv states Hope and Despair, Spirit of '77 calls them Something Extra and Something Less, Legacy just straight uses adv/disadv, with a "fleeting" modifier when it only applies to an immediate followup roll.
@Medix2 At the end of the day, the actually functional alternative is a different Q&A site founded on radically different epistemologies of ethical programming.
Or, at the very least, a Q&A site designed by people interested in the fact that ethical programming exists.
@BESW Yeah agreed, well... I'm not sure what "ethical programming" is outside of math-washing... but I almost certainly agree
Programming ethics is the entire field of making good choices about computer programming and software development.
An ethical Q&A site, for example, would have instituted strong protections for its users and volunteers from the very first day even though there was no sense it was needed; but because it felt like the Stack was in trustworthy hands at its start, no protections were put in place until that trust was lost either through misdeed or turnover--and then the protections were needed but didn't exist.
12:55 PM
@BESW Yup, browsing the interwebs got me similar things. Big agreement from me. Stack is... strange (read: confusing and bad) at times when deciding whether to be preemptive or reactive
This is a really common issue with crowd-content sites. YouTube is a classic example.
When the site is small and individual content creators are being courted to create the community the company has every reason to treat them very well. And so protections are inadequate because there's no sense of need. When the site gets so big that its investors are more influential than its content creators, those protections become necessary but aren't in place... and there's no incentive for the company to implement them now.
@Medix2 That list might make an interesting supplemental "answer" to this meta. Like, "here, for example, are a bunch of questions with list-answers that have been well-received on main."
Programming ethics is also concerned with things like the psychological implications of gamification: it achieves the company's goals but is it good for the users?
@nitsua60 I think Naut plans to make a Meta asking whether any of them are on-topic
@Medix2 @nitsua60 ...eventually :) I'm pretty busy right now and for me to do this correctly will need some real time.
12:56 PM
And the locus of control (think the infamous Clippy who could only be disabled once you're proficient with the system rather than being an opt-in feature).
@BESW First thing I do anywhere: find the options menu(s) and rate them (especially how easy they were to find)
And ultimately (and this is REALLY unpopular in tech circles), ethical programming needs to start by asking whether programming is really the answer to a problem, or if they're just looking for a justification for their programming. As always, I refer to Joseph Weizenbaum's Computer Power and Human Reason as a foundational text.
We see this failure-to-ask clearly in the Stack Exchange's Area 52 process.
The process is entirely a matter of "can this be done" and never "should it be" or "can it be done without harm."
Do you land "on your feet" even if your flying mount is knocked prone?
@BESW ethical programming needs to start by asking whether programming is really the answer to a problem There's an app for that. 😆
Which gets us stuff like lit.se, which spent most of its beta period arguing over whether it would define literature strictly according to English hegemonic traditions.
Or interpersonal.se, which is. Usually on fire.
1:04 PM
@goodguy5 I feel like Xanathar's gives a different answer than the PHB
@BESW Sometimes, free advice is worth what you pay for it. IMHO, IPSE is a fine example of that.
I think that the falling damage part of the rules supersedes it, actually.

A fall from a great height is one of the most common hazards facing an adventurer. At the end of a fall, a creature takes 1d6 bludgeoning damage for every 10 feet it fell, to a maximum of 20d6. The creature lands prone, unless it avoids taking damage from the fall.
(If interpersonal.se was just wrong that'd be one thing, but the Stack structure actively enables and even encourages harassment of marginalized people and it's multiplied dramatically when the topic is something like interpersonal's.)
@Medix2 Xanathar's provided an alternate way to deal with falling damage for those who are mechanically inclined; I find the xanathar's falling tool ... bad ... though it's an effort to provide a gamism for a game.
@BESW Sort of a fruits of a poisoned tree deal?
@KorvinStarmast It has an entire section "Flying Creatures and Falling" about stopping falling and lowering your fall damage based on your flying speed
1:08 PM
@BESW I was under the impression that Stack was trying to -stop doing that- (encouraging harassment) but it's a bit early to tell how effective the effort is
Q: Should this question on bludgeoning damage attacks with other stat scores be closed?

NautArchThis question has gone through several rounds of open/close and it's unclear to me what the status to be. I had the first comment to the question asking for a better understanding of the bounds question: specifically asking bout: What options have you already found in your own research? What sou...

@Medix2 Yes, and I will offer that I don't find it a useful addition. Some folks will, however, since some folks want a rule for everything - OK I'll stop.
@KorvinStarmast Oh yeah that's fair; there's quite a few things that have rules, I just ignore them
So, @Medix2, I don't see the Stack being able to course-correct. They built philosophies like Pearls Not Sand into the bones of the site and took a decade to start to think that maybe they were wrong.
At this point, intent is almost irrelephant because the systems are in place. It'd take ripping out the site's programming and starting over from scratch, I think, to make it truly a place that valued its users as more than fungible content-generators.
@BESW I still see lots of people saying Pearls Not Sand is a great philosophy... Thanks for the links to the posts you made earlier about your feelings/take on it
1:16 PM
Provide an entirely new kind of meta site designed to encourage discussion (because using the mainsite format is ridiculous, that thing is designed to DISCOURAGE discussion). Re-evaluate the effects of voting as a sorting technique on site morale and content quality, and consider alternative methods or at least alternative implementations.
Provide safety tools that actually prevent contact from harassers.
Provide legitimate structure and training for elected moderators and an active support system from paid employees, and figure out some way to protect your volunteers from doing unpaid social work.
I'm starting to agree that my first meta isn't appropriate.
Debating about deleting as maybe it seen as an attack (while that wasn't my intention)
@NautArch Perhaps the tone can be shifted but I was also interested in the answer. I have no idea how diamond mods are expected/supposed to use their close/reopen votes
@NautArch I think an edit to the question giving exposition on why you think it was a mistake and clarifying/apologizing as appropriate would be better than deleting.
@Medix2 I think that might be a better approach to asking.
Because this: "it had been through a couple of round of open/close I thought that many of the users who were involved in the question might have already have used their votes." was a great point and then I found myself surprised by this fact: "When I was a mod it was customary to cast your close or open as you saw fit." Perhaps I shouldn't have been surprised, but my immediate reaction was that
1:26 PM
@Medix2 There's a natural tension that all mods navigate between "I was given the super-vote for a reason, it's an abdication of duty not to use my judgment" and "I should basically leave everything to the community that can be done by the community, thus I draw back."
Like, within any given day =)
Q: Is there a Spell or Magic Item that will extend the range of racial Darkvision?

Sam LacrumbMy group has decided to head down into the Underdark. And I would like to optimize my Half-Elven Darkvision (60') Assume I have access to any spell or magic item that is in one of the hardcover books.. and do not want to use UA or 3rd party. What is the maximum Darkvision range I can get? Note: ...

@nitsua60 Yeah I wonder what Stack's stance on Mods having second accounts to vote without being a decision-maker and without putting that "moderator-stamp of finality" on things, is
@ThomasMarkov how's that?
@nitsua60 and that's totally reasonable and difficult. And why it's even more important that when the trigger is pulled that they explain why they pulled the trigger.
I, myself, vascillated constantly. Mostly because of the warring impetuses (a) the community should do the things it can and allowing that makes it easier for me to observe the community's stance and how well my instincts align, and (b) the mod-diamond carries a lot of *instructive*/example weight and it's really useful for (esp. lower-experience users) to see how the site's privileges are used.
@NautArch Personally, I agree--if anything, I always tried to err on over-commenting and/or opening metas to solicit input/feedback.
heck, i often don't dupe hammer and just submit related (possible dupe) to avoid making judgement calls i'm not totally sure of.
And when the community isn't sure, why is a single user so sure?
1:30 PM
If nothing else, I was always trying to send the message "yo, Stackizens: do step in and question me if you disagree, please!"
But I do submit that my initial meta was more aggressive than I meant it to be, and I'm sorry @linksassin.
@NautArch There's was a compelling argument I read on MSE once about the judicious use of the "skip" option on the review queue that I've let bleed into many other privileges. If I'm not feeling pretty strongly about open/close/dupe/delete/&c., I'm going to skip and trust that there are plenty of other stackizens around who will see, understand, and act.
Or even when I'm sure but I think someone else may think otherwise, I do that.
I feel like I'd be very afraid to use diamond moderator close votes just because I know for me when I started out (and for quite a long while after starting) I had the idea of "what a mod says, goes"
@NautArch I understand the frustration so no hard feelings. TBH I've asked similar metas on other sites in the past. There isn't a lot of visibility into a mod's thought process and I should have been clearer about that by leaving a comment in the first place.
1:33 PM
@NautArch I didn't read it as aggressive, but I can see that read being reasonable. I don't know that deletion's necessary (on the aggressiveness-count), but a little preamble that summarizes the comment "this isn't about whether the question should be open/closed, this is trying to better understand mods' approach/stance, generally."
If I find old tool-recommendation and shopping questions; do I vote to close them?
@linksassin hugs?
but seriously, I do feel bad if you felt like it was an attack. I edited the question and hope it's better.
@NautArch Buy me a drink first ;)
Gotta run for the day, just want to throw a last thought in there: modship is full of hundreds of judgment calls a day that there's no real way to know whether they're right or not (if there even is a "right" in the situation). My greatest comfort always came from trusting--hopefully with reason!--that experienced users wouldn't be shy about speaking up if they didn't understand or disagreed with something.
@NautArch It's ok. It was perhaps a little aggresive. But then again so was my opening a question you were already invested in. I appreciate you dialling back the tone though.
1:36 PM
@nitsua60 So much this. It's like the woman with the equations meme every time I consider voting on something.
@Medix2 This understanding, all by itself, would make you head-and-shoulders a better mod than several I've had to work with on various platforms.
And I think I was frustrated because I'd held my close vote back, and when I finally used it, it really felt like it was for naught (or not for naut).
@Medix2 It's kinda tough isn't, because sometimes we are saddled with the task of being the voice that says "this is how things are, take it or leave and that is final" but at other times we are just another voice in the community.
@Medix2 Urg.. site praxis has kinda been to ignore them until they come up naturally. You can, though throwing heaps of quiet but technically off-topic questions into the close queue might not be popular
@Rubiksmoose Oh yeah for sure. I just know it took me a very long time to feel I was able to cast a vote that disagreed with something a diamond moderator did. Spent more time here, learned more about being community-driven and how diamond mods are elected and the existence of Meta and things started moving towards "Oh, I actually am I allowed to disagree"
@Someone_Evil I'll just make a list...
1:43 PM
@Medix2 Related: for so long I was terrified of commenting because I did not want to get the dreaded "comments are not for extended discussion" message since I thought it was punishment by the mods.
I think when I first started it took me awhile to realize miniman wasn't a mod.
@Rubiksmoose Me, trying to post enough comments so a chat room suggestion would automagically appear instead of having a diamond moderator do it (worked I think one of the four times I tried it)
I'm assuming it's hella unlikely for it to be possible to 'unlock' a close/reopen vote option for a user when a diamond casts a vote that is more than simply the last voted needed?
As in, allowing a user to vote again in those cases?
I'd be shocked if someone hadn't suggested something like that on MSE at some point
1:48 PM
yeah, and same :)
hence my belief that it'd very difficult.
@Medix2 Ah yes, playing the comment mover algorithm game. The worst game.
I'd argue that you should be talking it out at that point instead (comments, or say meta)
@NautArch It'd definitely be something that took dev time, but there are likely philosophical arguments against it as well.
I've found that almost everything I come up with "Oh wouldn't this be neat!" has a feature-request somewhere
It turns out, over 10+ years and millions of users, many people have encountered similar issues and come to similar conclusions :)
I'm always disappointed though when I find my awesome feature request asked 9 years ago by someone.
1:55 PM
@NautArch When I first started it took me awhile to realize @Miniman wasn't my enemy. Their simple act of consistently answering questions well while I was composing my own answers went waaaay too far in coloring my immature impression =)
Obviously the enemy is @Someone_Evil.
@NautArch I get Mistaken For Mod a lot.
Even now when I'm basically a ghost except in chat.
But when I was active in main site, I constantly ran into the assumption that anybody who was helpful and familiar with the site was a mod.
@NautArch Perhaps you'll like this: I am finding some similarities between "Where can I sort spells by X?" (tool-rec) and "What are all the spells that X?" (asks for a list)
2:19 PM
@BESW oh I definitely made that mistake when I joined as well!
2:33 PM
I think that people mistake you for a mod, as well.
@goodguy5 moose, mod; close enough
@NautArch Thanks, I think!
@nitsua60 I think you mean it took me a while to lure you into a false sense of security...
@goodguy5 zing!
@Miniman Just waiting for the perfect moment to strike... It's a wolf in Djinn clothing!
2:50 PM
@Rubiksmoose Ready to rip the ground out from under your feet.
@Rubiksmoose If you understand/remember that reference, you are a true lore adept.
@BESW I like that point, right there. "doing unpaid social work" Nice phrase there.
@Miniman Alas! I played Golden Sun extensively, but much too long ago to remember any fine details.
@Rubiksmoose :D you're still way ahead of most people!
3:12 PM
I miss Golden Sun. Sure, Dark Dawn was nice but more please?
Perhaps the real Golden Sun was the djinni you met along the way.
@BESW if it quacks like a duck...
3:37 PM
@AncientSwordRage I'm pretty sure that if we wanted to ensure that we never see @BESW again, the absolute best (worst) thing we could do would be to give them a mod diamond.
@Rubiksmoose What about "Given the popularity of D&D questions, we have decided to make RPG.SE into a D&D-only site."
BESW has so few items in their feed already, I doubt they'd notice lol
But I suspect that would be a very close second.
@Rubiksmoose that tension someone mentioned about absolute power Vs absolute caution rings true
@BESW heading out for a playtest now! 12yo boy, 8yo girl, and housecat who follows us when we go for walks =)
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