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12:00 AM
@nitsua60 Hee.
...I know people who are here for reasons like that, and they tend to not be people it's a good idea to spend a lot of time around.
@nitsua60 that’s about why all my characters are involved with adventures (at least on the surface)
(Side note: "level 1 means you have no history" was a pet peeve of mine in D&D, mostly because it meant saying "no" to players' character concepts a lot, but also because plenty of non-PCs die of old age before hitting level 2 so it doesn't even make sense in the game's own mechanics.)
@BESW I suppose that there are people like that in most places I've lived. Just, maybe, a little more of them the more extreme (geographically, climatically, societally, &c.) a location is.
Yeah, Guam is as far as a continental USA citizen can get from their problems without a passport/visa.
12:15 AM
Morning all
@BESW :/
@Ash I mean, we also get people coming here because they think we're so small (and brown) that their mediocrity will be less of an obstacle to success since obviously nobody here will be better than them.
@BESW I can't make enough no thank you face for that
12:30 AM
@BESW I feel like there's a reference to the "Australian convict population" in there somewhere.
Or... I mean... a reference to the Hoax anyway
1:03 AM
@nitsua60 I mean, that's probably a truly common reason!
1:20 AM
@MarkWells I blame the Forge for that, but I may be wrong.
@nitsua60 yeah, which gives me a weird musical reference to REM, and "feeling gravity's pull" --- sorry, it's been a weird day.
@Axoren never forget that part of the word "history" is "story" :-)
@KorvinStarmast 2e player/PC-focused splatbooks took the "away from the table game" in that direction before the Forge, I'd argue.
(But I know veeeery little of the Forge, admittedly.)
1:38 AM
Are we talking character optimisation, or elaborate backstories? Because I'd say that charop is less of a thing in 5e than, say, 3.x, and backstory seems to be table (or individual) dependent.
1:51 AM
@KorvinStarmast Blaming the Forge is never wrong.
@Adeptus Both! Whether your prefabricated character is "at level 5 I'll take a two-level dip in Druid, and then pick up this prestige class..." or "and then I'll reveal my secret origin...", it makes you not want the emergent story to disrupt your plans.
@Adeptus I'm kinda just aimlessly ramblin' away....
2:08 AM
Hey mods there’s spam here (@Someone_Evil @linksassin @Rubiksmoose )
Q: What do you think of a social media only dedicated to gaming?

John CubeA new social media dedicated only to gaming has just been set up for gamers and only gamers. we'll talk about RPG, boardgames, games crowfunding, groups creation, comic cons, new releases and also enjoy the chat between gamers. www.gamescorner.org

I flagged it already
and it’s at -9 score
Nvm somebody got to it
Flagging it will alert them, and can result in it being auto-deleted, if I remember right
2:23 AM
@BardicWizard Yeah I got there. But 6 spam flags from the community will also auto-delete. The post if we don't get to it before then. Thanks for point it out but as Mark says we get notifications for flag anyway. Generally you can let flag do the work but we would rather you alert us than not if you see a problem that needs our attention or you need more room than the flag message gives you to explain it.
@linksassin oops, I didn’t really know what to do
@BardicWizard All good, we're all here to learn. It's always better to reach out than not if you are unsure.
1 hour later…
3:41 AM
So my day got exciting.
Something caused an electrical fault which started a fire
Fortunately nothing serious, but we had response from the electrical company, the fire dept, police, and ambulance. Even the Fire Marshal showed up
4:14 AM
@Ben Oooh fun times.
Last week electricians blew up the circuit board at my office during unscheduled testing. They thought because no one is in the office they didn't need to tell anyone. Kill all our remote sessions for 8 hours.
I'm digging back into 2013 chat to see if I can figure out where I originally got an idea for a game.
4:27 AM
@Ben oh no!! Hope everything’s ok
4:44 AM
Yeah it's all good. In all honesty our response wasn't as good as it should have been though haha
"You smell something burning?"
"Yeah smells like rubber?"
"Nah that's insulation"
"Oh ok."
"Oh ok no that's bad. Everyone out"
It wasn't serious though. The emergency response was great, but it was excessive for the issue. I think something was simply shorted out and only caused something to start melting, not actually catch fire. So we turned the power off and the issue was dealt with within an hour :)
@linksassin Good enough excuse to call it a day? :P
@Ben Was very tempting. Was a very unproductive day. One of my colleagues wanted to see the electrician the bill for 40 engineers time.
Hahaha yup
We've only got 6, and it was only an hour, but still even that isn't exactly cheap. Can only imagine what 40 x 8 would look like haha
I did the math once for what our quarterly town hall meetings cost. ~400 staff for a 3 hour meeeting. Most of them on engineering salaries. Many dollars...
5:01 AM
The last time I was involved in a fire was during the second tech rehearsal of my 8th grade school play. I was running sound, and a 6th grader was running lights (I’m not sure why he got to do it, though I was already making cue sheets and had to do sound setup). He forgot that the two light boxes can’t be plugged into the same circuit, plugged them in on the same outlet, and left his math homework on top of one of them, which caught fire.
Ruined the light box and made me be at school really late since my dad was the volunteer light designer and he, my best friend’s parents, and the drama
IIRC, he didn’t get to do lights again until he had written out a safety plan on how to properly set up the lights and an apology to the principal who had to turn off the fire alarm before the firefighters showed up (My best friend, the student assistant director, took over for two days and that’s how I learned cats cradle)
That play was amazing
My best friend: “my role is to shout for [the drama teacher] and try to keep people quiet”
5:24 AM
...yeah, that's a pretty accurate description of the AD in the productions I've worked with.
Just replace "drama teacher" with "stage manager."
We had an old air conditioner start blowing smoke at home. We ended up in hospital for a few hours observation for smoke inhalation. The home insurance inspector came out and said, "I'm really sorry, but it didn't actually catch fire..." (claim refused)
@BESW the school was tiny, the drama program smaller, and there were maybe 8 kids doing tech stuff (including set building) and 10-12 actors in any given production. And yet, the shouting was still necessary. Our drama teacher also taught art and ran one PE class (there were only 2 elective teachers for 300 ish kids), so she can shout like you’ve never heard before, and the AD was still needed to do more shouting half the time.
I did the posters and ads for our university's theater productions from fall 2012 'til fall 2019, and shouting is still very much a part of the process.
5:39 AM
@Adeptus that’s too bad.
@BESW I went to a couple set builds for our spring play last year, and even with 5 kids and 3 parents at the build the theater tech teacher (my high school has a really good theater program) still yelled a lot
I guess yelling is just a theater thing
6:12 AM
@BESW I enjoy the fact you're favoriting my Hebrew tweets. I always go and check how they come out in auto-translation.
I especially enjoy the fact that my one about "ferret comes before cat in alphabetical order" makes no sense in English.
@lisardggY That was so funny.
And yeah, the translations are a little wonky but I can usually figure out the meaning and if I can't be pretty confident I understand it, I just scroll on.
@lisardggY that also works in italian IIRC
@Ash yeah I heard that at least one specific time while in High School and immediately thought some kind of football jock must have come up with the phrase (there wasn't a football program at my school I just figured that was probably one of the only ways that could be true, as steriotypical as that is)
@trogdor That phrase is literally the core characterization of Al Bundy on Married With Children, which tells you exactly what it's worth.
@Ash Not the best days, but at least some of the better days, by comparison.
6:24 AM
@lisardggY I have never watched that
@trogdor Well.... don't. It was groundbreaking for its day - especially in breaking standards of vulgarity and "you can't show that on television" and a lot of the forced saccharinity of American television, but it really hasn't aged well.
no you are right
It was an important show for historical reasons, but I wouldn't recommend watching it today.
I just watched a clip of it and it's,.... horrible
that's 7 minutes more of the show than I ever needed already
@trogdor sorry, no refunds
6:29 AM
well at least I learned why the character was used as an example
@trogdor The clip included the recurring "4 touchdowns in one game" line, I take it.
I think Ed O'Neill's role in Married With Children was a big part in his casting for Jay in Modern Family, which in many ways is a reversal of his classic role and, in general, of the portrayal of families.
mostly a lot of fat jokes actually
Ah, yes, a lot of cringe involved.
and really general misogyny
in fact I don't think I saw a single joke that he delivered that wasn't directed at a woman specifically
I mean, this was the late 80's, when TV was general a lot more racist, misogynist, ableist and many other things, and still MwC tried to be more vulgar than that.
6:35 AM
and all the ones that were directed at a man were directly at him
and it seems the main reason for a joke to be directed at him was for him to make one back
It was important for helping TV get over a lot of its puritanism - I mean, it had a whole episode devoted to a toilet because it was still almost unheard of at the time to refer explicitly to toilets on TV - but just because it took justified potshots at bad things doesn't mean it wasn't as bad - or worse - in others.
@trogdor Most of the jokes are aimed at him, and the rest of the family, because (at least for the first several seasons) the family were explicitly made to be unlikeable. They weren't "losers with redeeming qualities", they were vicious, hateful assholes.
In later seasons they started to hit the problem of keeping interest up in unlikeable characters, so they gradually got less nasty.
I typed his name in specifically so I didn't exactly get a picture of his whole family
and really what I did see of his family was HIM insulting his own family members
which is just,... wow
I realize it's definitely not a comprehensive picture in 7 minutes of contactless clips but it's still quite bad
7:36 AM
8:25 AM
No offense to anyone who actually liked the show, but at least to me MwC seemed like one of those things that invariably was on only when you turned on the TV at some weird time and had no idea what would be on. The idea of intending to watch it feels weird to me x)
1 hour later…
9:49 AM
@lisardggY Did someone say ferret?
9:59 AM
@AncientSwordRage Purely.
@lisardggY 😍
2 hours later…
11:46 AM
@BESW I've been watching Leverage recently, and something's just prompted me to remember one of the scenes from it.
Elsewhere I've just been talking about what it takes to make a satisfying narrative defeat of a villain.
In storytelling, to make the defeat of a villain feel satisfying, the exact circumstances of their defeat must come as a direct result of the very same vices and failures that characterised their villainy, and as a result of their refusal to learn and change for the better.
(This is not a universal formula, but I will take it as one common and successful rubric among many.)
For sure
There's lots of good examples from pop culture! In Avatar TLA, Admiral Zhao's pride had him create the very enemy that would defeat him, drive away his allies, and refuse the help that would save him. In Star Wars Episode VI, the Emperor fails to learn the value of love and togetherness, and so is blindsided and overthrown by people acting on those values. Ronan the Destroyer from Guardians of the Galaxy is also defeated the same way.
This is fairly typical of Western storytelling; other cultures will have their own rubric for satisfying conclusions to villainy. Eastern cinema will often follow different rules for example.
But in Leverage, there's an episode where a guy has robbed hundreds of people of their homes. Midway through, the protagonists—being the ridiculously expert thieves and con artists they are—have set up a scheme to bait this guy to get involved in. They try to rope this guy into the idea of profiting at the expense of some people who all have fatal illnesses.
They draw up a list of people who they'll be ostensibly profiting off, and give the guy the list.
Every single identity on the list is made up—no real people are actually involved—but it's later revealed th at the names are all the names of the people whose homes he stole.
The man's greed and lack of compassion was the M.O. of his villainy, and his greed and lack of compassion both drew him into the scam that set up his defeat. His greed and lack of compassion meant he didn't even care about knowing the names of his victims—and if he'd known the names at all, he may have been able to see what was coming his way.
Leverage often leans into one of my favorite tropes from the original Mission: Impossible series, and both use it because it helps give the protagonists moral deniability. They set up the villain in a position where he will be defeated easily if he continues to act villainously.
You're right, they do do that.
12:02 PM
I have... feelings... about this trope. I really like it, but it's also very often used as a moral cop-out to let the protagonists arrange for truly awful things to happen, without the story or the characters feeling obligated to wrestle with the responsibility for those awful things.
@BESW that's also my issue with it
It also often gets used for a sort of reassuring moral passivity message, that villainy is self-defeating and so we don't have to take action against it.
Something that makes the Star Wars example work better for me, for example, is that the Emperor has failed before Luke walks into the room: Luke's friends are going to blow up the Death Star no matter what the Emperor, Vader, or Luke, does. The throne room conflict is a battle for the souls of Luke and Vader, not a battle for the Empire.
That example isn't about the Empire's defeat, it's about the Emperor's defeat.
The empire has already been defeated, but the Emperor himself is defeated separately.
@doppelgreener it's a good example of plot and character tension being resolved separately
Right, but the Emperor's moral failure isn't the cause of his defeat: he chose how he was gonna die, not whether. He was gonna get blown up either way. So there's a call to action against oppression (no "don't worry evil will defeat itself") and a responsibility for tragedy (Luke's friends are responsible for all the deaths on the Death Star regardless of the Emperor's choices).
12:10 PM
Sure. Nothing in this trope I'm talking about suggests their villainy in and of itself causes their defeat.
Yeah. I'm just saying that I see the trope used to say that a lot. I really enjoy it when it's employed in a more nuanced way, but when I use it myself I have to be cautious about what I'm saying with it.
The value of this trope, and the reason it's satisfying, is because of the message that those who are able to change, learn, grow, and exhibit and live by positive traits (often love and compassion) are going to be able to save the day in the course of living by those traits. Meanwhile, those who follow courses of evil and refuse to learn, change, and grow to be better are going to have their downfall because of what they're doing, if we work to defeat them.
[ SmokeDetector | MS ] Bad keyword with email in answer, email in answer, pattern-matching email in answer, potentially bad keyword in answer (262): How can gambling work in a world where magical divination is possible? by Frederick august on rpg.SE (@Rubiksmoose)
@SmokeDetector 25 seconds! That was fast.
@doppelgreener is that peoples opt-in delete votes?
12:15 PM
That was quite fast.
-6 too, people hit that quick.
No, that's me waiting to see that Smokey had caught it so I didn't need to manually report it to it
Im gonna need some help interpreting this number: " i won £3,000000,00, 3 Million pounds"
And a number of those flags are automatic through that system
@AncientSwordRage at a score of 262, it's guaranteed that post had several autoflags cast on it
@ThomasMarkov it's impressive
@doppelgreener WOW
12:17 PM
3,000,000,003,000,000 I think is the correct interpretation.
And those red flags automatically give a downvote from Community friend
@ThomasMarkov that makes sense
@BESW Definitely also real life is showing that it doesn't work this way, but we still feel like it should, so we see the things missing as a failure of the environment around us that we also need to work on.
Re: the trope of evil failing due to its own... sheer impossibility, I there's an even more common, maybe somewhat downplayed version, where the traits that cause the downfall are not by themselves evil, just conductive to evil
On a related note, does anyone else feel like there's been an uptick in spam recently? Or maybe that we're coming out of a downtick? (does this data exist anywhere...)
@Someone_Evil Metasmoke should give you a detailed dashboard describing everything going on on RPG.SE specifically. You can access it because you're a diamond moderator, I can't. I don't remember where to find it but someone at Charcoal HQ should be able to point you to the site-specific stats page if you ask for some help finding it.
12:22 PM
eg. like how Sauron does two major screw-ups in the Lord of the Rings: first, he leads his army personally wearing his supercharger artifact whose loss insta-gibs him, and second, he never accounts for the possibility that his enemies might try to destroy his supercharger artifact instead of using it against him. In both situations, it's his arrogance, underestimating the abilities and wisdom of his foes, that does him in. A foolish trait, not per se an evil one – but certainly related.
we love to associate positive and negative traits together though:
Evil === Foolish, Arrogant, Ugly
Good === Smart, Pretty, Humble
@kviiri I've toyed with how to make a system which showcases the idea that character traits are at the core all positive, but can be manifested in twisted toxic ways. Like confidence/arrogance.
"Thinking everyone else is at least a bit dumb" seems to be a major defining feature of megalomaniac villains like Sauron
@AncientSwordRage True, but I guess I want to point out the distinction that arrogance itself doesn't make one evil – it's a harmful trait but not inherently villainous, and is a fairly common... what's the antonym of "redeeming quality"? For heroic characters, anyway.
@AncientSwordRage Intelligence seems to go both ways. Good being also less smart, and the evil being the cunning one, is not an unheard of portrayal.
@vicky_molokh-unsilenceMonica true
@kviiri Tragic flaw?
12:27 PM
Sauron's arrogance and desire to destroy also lead to a failure to learn and change. His lack of value of life was also instrumental in shaping his army, which was also unable to protect him and unwilling to do anything more for him than it had to.
I'm risking TV Tropes as they often list opposites of tropes
Frequently the heroes themselves exhibit the values that the villain lacks, such that his refusal to learn those values and change is a large part of both his continued villainy and his defeat.
One thing I enjoyed about MLP:FIM was that it repeatedly had antagonists who, when defeated by their failure to comprehend the virtues of the protagonists, humbled themselves to ask for help to learn those virtues themselves.
@Someone_Evil apparently spam significantly decreased during (initial stages of) the pandemic. Could be we're coming out of that
That's network wide btw
@BESW that was nice
12:32 PM
@BESW that's great!!!
Multiple antagonists became recurring guest characters or even main characters in later story arcs.
@Rubiksmoose We also had a run from 19. aug to 8. sep where we only had a fp and that's probably more what I picked up on
...interestingly, I'm having a hard time fitting any of the SRatPoP antagonists into that kind of framework without really forcing it.
Their flaws and defeats weren't really portrayed along those lines.
@Rubiksmoose I'm still impressed by the number of badnesses that started going away as capitalism ground to a halt
@Rubiksmoose yeah, doesn't look to be that marked out on our site. Looking at the last year on MS, those events don't really jump out (they do on site analytics f.ex)
12:44 PM
@doppelgreener hahaha you are absolutely correct.
1:05 PM
Good morning!
@kviiri When it first came on, I immediately disliked it and would not watch it. Now and again it might be on at someone else's house, and what I saw of it I still disliked.
VTC homebrew question that's just asking "what do you think?": rpg.stackexchange.com/q/175687/1204
@doppelgreener agreed
I think the Fool race question can be reopened..
1:32 PM
Can anyone point me to a good game about doing espionage/heist? My school group’s interested in doing something based off of ocean’s eleven or mission impossible (or this book called the great Greene heist) where they do a caper with extensive planning and things start going wrong.
@BardicWizard Leverage RPG was designed for exactly this
I was looking at shadowrun (my dad has a copy that says it’s set in 2050) but I’ve never played it
... Margaret Weis Productions appears to no longer be selling it though. Heck.
I would definitely recommend Leverage over Shadowrun.
They took it off drive thru RPG and there are no copies at any reasonable price on Amazon. :(
They were exiting the RPG business, but did they have to do it like this? :'(
1:37 PM
Hmm I can't find Leverage: the Quickstart Job.
Shadowrun is pretty rich with nitty-gritty details. By my understanding it's geared a lot towards players who want the gameplay to be heavily strategical and tactical
@doppelgreener That one's based on a show, so it might be a licensing issue
@BardicWizard Aeon Wave is a cyberpunk Fate Core setting/adventure with half-pre-made characters hired by a dead client to find out why she died at the heart of one of the most secure corporate R&D sites in the world.
@doppelgreener dang it. I had to fund my own colored pen shopping this year so my budget is already tiny
@Someone_Evil True
1:40 PM
@kviiri yeah, it’ll be too tactical for my players
@BESW nice
@BESW hmm, that could be fun
@BardicWizard I would ask you not to humor the prices on Amazon by paying them anyway
@BardicWizard I uploaded the free Leverage quickstart adventure for you since it seems to be missing from all the places I used to be able to link it from.
My very limited exposure to Shadowrun (through people more experienced with it) suggests that the intended playstyle has lots of planning for different runs, with security measures listed sounding a lot like... well. What one'd expect from actually performing an armed raid on an armed company.
1:41 PM
(I'm trying to only recommend free stuff.)
Some scenario book, by what I was told, instructed the GM that the company expects diversions, so whenever their facility is attacked, it is common prudence to dispatch two security teams: one at the initial site of attack, the other at the complete opposite end of the facility, to see if anyone's coming in that way.
@BESW thanks!
There's usually a World of Adventure for Fate that comes near almost anything a person wants... [rummages]
It's a style of gameplay I'd like to maybe try out once or twice, but not as a rule xD
@BESW yeah, my budget most months spans from “nonexistent” to “I maybe have five bucks”
1:43 PM
> You are a normal person in search of money, adventure, or fame, with multiple Field Agents hanging out in your brain. Will you succeed in your mission? Find out in The Agency, a Fate World of Adventure by Tracy Barnett.
@BardicWizard If you're open to doing some homework, Condensed seemed to work OK for low-resolution, cinematically-influenced heisting for me so far (one heist already done, some intermediate criminal activity in-between, and one underway; players commented on some parallels with Mission Impossible, but I was actually going more for a Blacklist/Hitman kind of feel, and never watched MI, so there may be some differences in the results).
@kviiri and that is why I no longer play heists with one GM. Got us every time with a second team even if we planned for it (once we planned for three teams and got four cause one came from the ceiling)
@vicky_molokh-unsilenceMonica I have time most days, and that could be fun to try; the cinematic aspect is really cool sounding
....oh, huh. Aeon Wave used to be free.
@BESW that is a fascinating premise
@BardicWizard The Fate Worlds of Adventure all have wild premises even when the execution doesn't always live up to it.
1:49 PM
@BESW wow. Some of those are very interesting
@BardicWizard In general, that's one of the reasons why I prefer I games where planning for things can be done as a retroactive feature
(another reason: it generally indicates the game's designers know how to escape some conventional boxes that I dislike in general)
@BardicWizard A great thing about the Leverage RPG is that the end of the heist has everybody do a flashback to describe (invent) something they did off-screen "earlier" in order to justify winning despite the odds "now."
It's basically going around and saying why you're so awesomely prepared that you deserve an extra roll toward victory.
I will also mention that Blades in the Dark has an SRD on its site, and is one of the most popular new heist engines.
Bears in the Dark is a free game designed to introduce people to the Blades in the Dark game engine.
@BardicWizard Fate Condensed is not a heist game; it's a newer way of explaining the same basic core engine that's used in Aeon Wave, The Agency, and all the Worlds of Adventure. It can be heist-y, but I'd recommend using one of the iterations that's been specifically tuned for heisting, and use Fate Condensed as a reference doc.
2:04 PM
Blades in the dark is a fascinating read!
@BESW so noted
@BESW Is this some sort of mix between Blades in the Dark and Honey Heist?
@BardicWizard A lot of people really like it, and developers are making a lot of "Forged in the Dark" games from it.
Also, doesn't Blades just use the Apocalypse World game system?
It's heavily inspired by the "Powered by the Apocalypse" style of game engine, but even PbtA is so wildly varied across its different iterations by different people that "PBTA" is often more of a gesture towards intended style than a description of content. And Blades ventures further from PbtA than most things which carry the PbtA label, both in style and substance.
To say that Blades in the Dark is Powered by the Apocalypse would be about as accurate as saying that No Dice No Masters is Powered by the Apocalypse.
I've heard lots of vague praise towards BitD but for some reason I still have a somewhat negative preconception about it. Maybe someone's been unhappy with it and I just forget
Or then I'm just making stuff up
2:11 PM
I find it... frustrating... because I love a lot of what I'm seeing about the engine but I have yet to find an expression of it that I want to actually play. Maybe Bears in the Dark...
Blades itself is grimdark and a bit misanthropic. A lot of its Forged brethren take thematic cues from that, and I'm not interested in misanthropic play.
Q: We have about 30 questions about Path of War that are not tagged as such. What should we do about them?

Baskakov_DmitriyUsing this search query, one can find slightly more than 30 questions that clearly mention Path of War, an alternative ruleset for Pathfinder published by Dreamscarred Press, but that are not tagged as such. Due to this fact, it's not possible to find them if searching using the path-of-war tag. ...

@TheOracle Are they about PoW, or is PoW just part of the context for a question that doesn't need PoW knowledge to answer?
1 hour later…
3:33 PM
@BardicWizard Ages ago TSR put out a game called Top Secret, but I am not sure if it has aged well. It was an attempt to do a bit of James Bond or The Saint or The Avengers; Leverage (per doppel) I have no experience with, but I have heard good things about it
@doppelgreener I wonder if my copy of Firefly RPG is going to become a collectors item.
@KorvinStarmast Quite possibly
I think I need to read up on why MW productions is exiting the RPG scene. I'd like to hear what she has to say on that topic ... (And yeah, it is a small market)
@KorvinStarmast Here's their announcement: margaretweis.com/blogs/news/cam-banks-acquires-cortex-license
They don't mention much about why except for this bit:
> This announcement coincides with Margaret’s retirement from RPG development to focus on her current novel and film projects.
@doppelgreener Aha, I think I had seen something about that kickstarter, and am glad that Cortex at least remains alive and well. Thanks for the link, and I think I have an idea on why MW stepped back. She's just about a decade older than I am, and I suspect that she's chosen to devote such energy as she's got to her first love, writing.
4:01 PM
@KorvinStarmast - Top Secret was kind of fun at the time, actually. I haven't played it in many years though, so I could not tell you how it has aged.
There was a game I had played at camp back in the early 1990s. Debating about putting up a question for it, but it was like an escape from europe during ww2 rpg.
I'm back!
@kviiri Having played it, I can give some less vague praise: (1) the engagement - score - payoff - downtime loop is a decent outer structure for episodic play but leaves the interior structure fairly open, (2) the core resolution mechanic only has outcomes of "you succeed" and "this bad thing happens", and (3) it has some mechanisms to discourage obsessing over plans, which is otherwise a huge problem when running heist scenarios.
4:18 PM
@KorvinStarmast That makes sense!
I had a thought last night about turning the ranger into a warlock-type build with short rest spell slot refresh with similar progression.
4:40 PM
@NautArch Heck, give ALL non-Spellcasting classes short rest spell slot refresh. Barbarians can have Rage, and only Rage, as their spell list.
@MarkWells :P
I've just been underwhelmed at the spellcasting options for the ranger and thought treating them like a warlock would be interesting.
@NautArch Have you looked at what they get in the class feature variants UA? I have a player using that on a Ranger atm, and it seems fine (admittedly only one session played)
@KorvinStarmast interesting. I’ve never heard of it before
@Someone_Evil I've been pretty unhappy with the class feature variants UA and didn't look that carefully.
but i'll check that out.
5:21 PM
You can still find PDF's here and there but they are of dubious provenance.
I gave the rogue in my campaign a free Ability Score Increase, AMA
@Xirema What is your favorite color?
Purple, but sometimes green or pink depending on my mood
@Xirema what is the average airspeed of an unladen swallow?
@NautArch African or European?
5:33 PM
0km/h because I ate them all.
@Xirema What major factors led to the downfall of the Roman empire? Please format the answer as a 20 page essay.
@Xirema but seriously, do you roll stats or use pointbuy/array?
I mean, it's just going to be "The Carthaginians were ****boys" in 120 point font across those 20 pages.
Hannibal will remember that.
5:41 PM
@NautArch Officially, pointbuy, but some of the characters were imported from other campaigns that used rolled stats.
@Xirema I mean, boosting a stat or giving a feat is more than reasonable
The context for the rogue is A) the player is newer, B) her Dexterity score at level 8 (6 Rogue 2 Int!Warlock) is only 16, C) her spellcasting stat (Int) is 14, D) During the session, across like 10 attacks only one of them landed, and the monster only had an AC of 14, so these were absurdly unlucky rolls, and E) I didn't tell the player they were getting an ASI, I just had their patron (An Archon that can only communicate through emotions) tell them they had to choose "Head or Hands?"
They chose Head, and I gave them a permanent +2 to their Intelligence.
@Xirema I have taken the + aggregate and used it to adjust a PC here and there if everyone else has larger aggregate + during roll up. Works out fine.
@Xirema Did they pick feats instead of ASIs? Or did the multiclass bork their choices.
@MikeQ Was it he who introduced the pairing of fava beans and a nice Chianti?
5:46 PM
@NautArch I don't allow feats from ASIs in this campaign, feats are instead granted at important campaign milestones.
So yeah, they've only taken ASIs thus far.
@Xirema Okay, then just ASIs...did they miss out because of their choice to multiclass?
@NautArch Yeah, basically.
and their starting stats weren't great to begin with? Did they intend to multiclass when they started with their stat spread?
@NautArch They did not, this was a later-in-the-campaign decision.
And their stats are "fine" when looking at the aggregate, it's just that as a rogue, missing your sneak attacks in a turn really hurts your damage output.
So the player had expressed to me a few times they felt like their character wasn't pulling her weight.
@JohnP My exposure to it was quite limited - one of our gaming group got it, and we were looking forward to multiple sessions, but, as can happen, the usual late teenage/early 20's male social friction thing arose - over something else - and that particular group broke up. I didn't get to try to play it again. The next group that formed began playing Chivalry and Sorcery ...
5:49 PM
@Xirema i mean, it's all about having fun, and if the other players are cool with it and they're also having fun, then there really isn't an issue. But I would probably talk with the player about choices and consequences.
@KorvinStarmast We played maybe 10-12 sessions before the same thing occurred.
"are you sure you want to do that? it means this."
@JohnP Heh, I wish I had bought the game, though. I read about it quite a bit in Dragon magazine but never found anyone who had it and wanted to play it in the years following. So it goes ..
@NautArch I mean, all the other characters are significantly better optimized. The Cleric, Fighter, and Monk have 20 in their primary stats (especially the fighter who took the Sharpshooter feat) and the barbarian has tons of HP (and still a 19 in strength).
@Xirema you did the right thing. I'd not worry about it.
5:51 PM
Sounds like you made the right decision then
The rogue's main feature has been absurdly high ability check rolls, since she took the Observant feat. Which is really cool and helpful in a lot of circumstances, but in combat she's fallen behind.
@KorvinStarmast Yes, I do think I made the right decision. =P
@Xirema oh yeah, def right decision. But Id still talk about choices - they may just not understand the consequences.
Also, if you're looking for a short-term patch for unlucky rolls in combat, you could give the player Inspiration if they're failing too much, to offset the bad luck
but if she dominates out of combat, that is a trade off (if that's a big thing)
@Xirema When the cleric casts guiding bolt, that's a good time for her to attack since she'll have advantage ... it's a good combo when the team can pull it off ...
5:53 PM
@NautArch Yeah, it's not like the character sucked totally.
@Xirema Right, it may be a reframing of what they're good at - rather than making them good at everything all the time. I may have opted for a magic item rather than the ASI.
But I'm also a believer that the modifiers aren't the biggest thing in 5e - the die is.
@NautArch Dunno. Combat is usually a significant part of the game. It doesn't quite make sense to equate non-combat utility with in-combat ability.
But she rolled like 4 13s against an AC14 creature between using her daggers and then trying to eldritch blast it, and I was like ".............. okay, maybe it's time for an adjustment"
@MikeQ depends on the game, but I agree
See related: "Pacifist" characters in D&D. There will be large chunks of the game where the player effectively isn't playing.
5:55 PM
BUt that also should have been discussed during character creation and those choices
@MikeQ Generally agree
@KorvinStarmast Probably my favorite old school game that I would play again would be Champions. Designing super heroes is cool.
@JohnP sigh: so many games, so little free time ... back to RL I go ...
offtopic question, has anyone here played Age of Steam?
I want to get some train game to blow off some steam with (:D)
@kviiri haven't. Downloaded Railway Empire when it was free on Epic, but haven't played it.
6:05 PM
i used to love RRT II as a kid and would like to replicate the same industrial strategy thrills with a board game.
Also holy moley RRT II has an atmospheric soundtrack.
@MikeQ But someone who has a modifier of 1 or 2 less than others, but also is the primary out of combat player is still keeping pace.
I'd definitely still throw a new player a bone here, but I'd talk with them about it.
6:32 PM
@MarkWells Forgot to thank you for this insight – the first one in particular sounds good to me (I thrive with rigid frameworks with enough blanks to fill) but sadly I think I won't have the time or energy to play it in any foreseeable near future x_x
6:51 PM
@kviiri Yes, in the negatives column for Blades I'd mention that it is not quite as low-prep as it's often said to be. There's not a lot of prep needed for the score itself, but keeping track of the moving parts of the setting has given me some headaches.
7:30 PM
I had a really weird campaign idea: all bards, singing their way from taverns to the music festival of their patron deity
Is that an idea that is easy to do in d&d or would it be better with a different system?
Would they still fight stuff and face perilous challenges? Or is it just a musical road trip?
Musical road trip for 90% of it, very little combat
my inital thought is don’t use d&d but just use the setting
7:54 PM
non-combat focus isnt great for D&D
there are much better systems for that, but it is doable
getting everyone to say "yeah, i wanna be a bard" may be a bigger hurdle
@BardicWizard That reminds me of Swordsfall - The Summit of Kings
It's more of a tournament arc then a road trip, but it's an adventure written around bards Jalens.
Also it's not D&D, it's using a specific system.
@NautArch not all af my group would agree to it, its one of the things I’m going to add to the list of “things I might eventually do as a one shot if i get a different group”
We had a campaign where we were all members of a hair band
i was the only bard, though
but at one point, there was a battle of the bands
@RedRiderX fascinating
I did a series of one shots where I built the whole party bard characters, but modeled after other classes. The premise was that my Bard in our main campaign was telling stories about ancient heroes. It took three sessions before a character in our main campaign asked my Bard, "are you sure all those heroes were actually bards?" so next time I ran a one shot I pulled out the real characters and let them use them.
8:02 PM
@ThomasMarkov ... that’s amazing. claps
I had the swords bard change into an eldritch knight, I had a whisper bard tun into an arcane trickster, I had a lore bard turni into a sorcerer
8:28 PM
Q: Is my Fool race balanced?

MintySweeTeaI want to create a homebrew playable race called Fools. Essentially the idea is court jesters but as a race. They have bright, multicolored skin. I want them to have the abilities of the original Fool character in my short story, but I'm afraid they might be too overpowered and/or unbalanced. I h...

9:17 PM
@HotRPGQuestions ADV crushing that analysis
Q: Can a creature use legendary resistance to succeed against a scrying spell?

TalMy players recently decided that they would like to cast the Scry spell on a creature that has the Legendary Resistance trait. Does this trait function outside of combat? My major concern is that the creature wouldn't necessarily know it was being scryed on in order to use the resistance to avoid...

@AncientSwordRage Really great first post.

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