View Poll Results: What's your Favorite System?

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  • 1e

    2 2.78%
  • 2e

    2 2.78%
  • 3.5e

    10 13.89%
  • d20 (custom rules, etc)

    10 13.89%
  • PF

    15 20.83%
  • 4e

    6 8.33%
  • 5e

    27 37.50%
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Thread: Tabletop Games Thread

  1. #4761
    Greatness, at any cost mAc Chaos's Avatar
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    FATE is plenty mechanical. It has the usual bonuses and skills and stuff. It's just that it lets the players apply a lot of extra bonuses on top based off their character traits, and the game runs off this back and forth.

    You know what? Have you ever played D&D 5e? You know how characters have personality traits like drawbacks, flaws, bonds, ideals, etc? And that the game recommends letting you get inspiration or roll with advantage when you lean into those? It doesn't happen often because it's sort of an afterthought in 5e, but that concept came from FATE. FATE builds the entire game around it. One of the "problems" with knowing when to give inspiration is what counts as leaning into it. If a player is very mechanical minded they might want to know EXACTLY how many feet they need to rush towards someone for it to count as a reckless charge, if their character is supposed to be a hot head as their flaw. In 5e most of the time it doesn't matter, but FATE has your main character trait based on concepts like this.

    You pick an aspect, which is basically a description of your character, a title. Let's take my avatar, Perfect Cell. If I was using him as a character, I might make his aspect "the perfect being", that being a genetically engineered super fighter who has traits from all the other martial arts characters. There is no list of aspects, it's just whatever you want it to be and the GM approves. OK, so what does this do exactly? Nothing, on its own.

    But when it's time to do some sort of action, in the same way a player might try to pull from his backstory to ask if it helps, like they might say "hey in my backstory I used to be raised by orcs, so would that help me understand these orc bandits we just ran into better", I might say, "as the perfect being, I have the same martial arts knowledge as all these other fighters, so it helps me with this roll to learn what martial arts style this other guy is using." The difference is in the former, it's purely the player basically asking if it's OK and the DM allowing it, while in the latter the game encourages the player to just lead with it and only if it's really crazy would the DM disallow it.

    The DM can also draw on your aspect to put you in tight spots, using the same aspect -- a good aspect should have a good and bad side, not just be all good. For example, as "the perfect being" who has all of the other characters' traits, like Saiyans, the DM might say that I have to spare the characters I just beat because I would want to have a better fight. And I would have to go along with this (or pay some extra resources to overcome it, sometimes).

    So as you can see, it requires the player being a good sport in not trying to constantly push the things they get out of their aspects to absurd lengths while at the same time using them to get most of their advantages, while also being the source of their disadvantages. And this is a negotiation done on the player to GM level rather than something the character has any idea about or decision about, in-game.

    It is basically mechanizing how your character concept would impact the game without breaking it down to a ton of different separate skills and abilities you build out.
    He never sleeps. He never dies.

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  2. #4762
    邪魔 Spanner Random's Avatar
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    So it works better when there's more rapport - or at least trust - between player and GM, and a solid ability to read the room on at least the part of the latter. That makes a lot of sense, definitely a strong argument against jumping right in with this system.

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  3. #4763
    闇色の六王権 The Dark Six Ratman's Avatar
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    In Bioessentialist Birthright...
    Wait, actually, I cannot imagine that at all. If you're writing a game of court intrigue and don't even have 'ew that guy's bloodline is worse than mine', then you don't really have anything. Even if indeed you are writing that as a case study of why bloodline quality may not necessarily determine one's mettle. If you don't even let yourself write the conflict at all, it's all over.

  4. #4764
    邪魔 Spanner Random's Avatar
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    That thread is unhinged but there are some salient points to be made about overcorrection here when you're removing references to traditional beliefs and practices that would be suspect if they were justified, like the whole "driders are shunned as impure" thing or changing "breeding quaggoths" to "recruiting" as if they're submitting resumes and going for interviews. You're already ascribing these things to an entire race anyway - it doesn't make it less bioessentialist to sand the edges off the darker parts.

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  5. #4765
    アルテミット・ソット Ultimate Thot Five_X's Avatar
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    It's on one hand a classic example of the flattening effect of consumer capitalism. All those edges are sanded off with the ideal of appealing to every possible demographic, enabling infinite growth and recursive profits. That this is unsustainable in the long-term gets forgotten. This material component is crucial, and this whole phenomenon wouldn't be nearly as prevalent without it.

    On the other, I think it's representative of how self-consciously inward-looking Anglophone culture has become lately. You can read twenty different essays or articles or books and you'll hear not twenty but only one voice. There's so little playfulness with language and seemingly little joy in just making art that comes from the self. Maybe in that sense it's less literally inward-looking and more excessively outward-looking, a kind of anxiety about separating the perceived world into subjects and objects. I for one am not entirely sure that the injustices in our society can be fixed by changing some words in a tabletop roleplaying game manual, but that's the strange kind of scenario we've collectively wound up in. I think eventually it'll become more clear over time that linguistic overcorrections like these are boring and unsatisfying, and don't help anyone.
    <NEW FIC!> Revolution #9: Somewhere out there, there's a universe in which your mistakes and failures never happened, and all you wished for is true. How hard would you fight to make that real?

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  6. #4766
    祖 Ancestor Ideofago's Avatar
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    If we cannot be, then at least I will be. But who can I be without we?
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  7. #4767
    Greatness, at any cost mAc Chaos's Avatar
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    Now that I know captives are held in quarters for the enslaved instead of slave pens, I can rest easy. I was worried for a moment.
    He never sleeps. He never dies.

    Battle doesn't need a purpose; the battle is its own purpose. You don't ask why a plague spreads or a field burns. Don't ask why I fight.

  8. #4768
    邪魔 Spanner Random's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Five_X View Post
    little joy in just making art that comes from the self
    To be fair, they're not. I don't think anyone would argue that D&D is one of the most aggressively corporate franchises that exists right now. Art isn't made by one person and all that, but we're so far from the idea of an "author" at this point that it's easy to forget that there are people who have to actually write these books.
    I for one am not entirely sure that the injustices in our society can be fixed by changing some words in a tabletop roleplaying game manual, but that's the strange kind of scenario we've collectively wound up in. I think eventually it'll become more clear over time that linguistic overcorrections like these are boring and unsatisfying, and don't help anyone.
    I don't think whoever is stamping this iteration is doing it to "save the world". It's just that it's more profitable to seem actively eager to be inclusive - granted, for good reason, it's a TTRPG - without actually understanding the driving ethos of the modern progressive movement. Some of these changes, even the ones selected by this tweet eager to make them look insane, are completely fine and inoffensive. I think it's actually a good thing to broaden the baddies of that one adventure from "orcs" to "raiders", since there's obviously more freedom in that. But since they so clearly are only interested in keeping up appearances (which is really all they can do anyway because they're literally WotC), everything is superficial, and only the superficiality matters, which will be very obvious when they overdo it.

    Which makes all the difference, right? Masiff Press, for example, explicitly designs games through their progressive political lens on purpose, and you would never catch Lancer doing this shit.

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  9. #4769
    アルテミット・ソット Ultimate Thot Five_X's Avatar
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    Yeah, that's why I mentioned consumer capital first. I don't think you can understand one (corporate puritanism) without the other (intellectual pseudoprogressivism).
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  10. #4770
    Only Half-Troll Cypher Attic's Avatar
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    I didn't even think quaggoths were sentient… regardless I find this sanitization of the FR stupid considering this is a setting where blood magic exists (and was meant to be used by PCs).

    Also, I heard that they were removing terms like "witch", "shaman", and "druid" to avoid offending people. Yet druids died out before Anglo-Saxons conquered England, witch is only used as a religious term by modern sex cults that culturally appropriate old (often non-European) religions, and shamans aren't even tied to any particular religion.

    (I know some people still use the term druid, but it's an identical situation to witches and has additional ties to British ultra-nationalism.)
    I think it goes: "I don't trust people like me." — no, that's not it…

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  11. #4771
    The Plesioth Hip Check Of Life Deathhappens's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ratman View Post

    In Bioessentialist Birthright...
    Wait, actually, I cannot imagine that at all. If you're writing a game of court intrigue and don't even have 'ew that guy's bloodline is worse than mine', then you don't really have anything. Even if indeed you are writing that as a case study of why bloodline quality may not necessarily determine one's mettle. If you don't even let yourself write the conflict at all, it's all over.
    This reminds me of a scandal in Greece a few years ago, when a history book described the massacre at Smyrne (Izmir, nowadays) in 1922 with the word "overcrowded".
    While much of the ensuing furor was purely for political capital, the fact remains that trying to paper over distasteful aspects of human nature (whether in historical fact or in a fantasy setting which still very much reflects it) can only ever be harmful for the people reading it in the long term. You can't eliminate racism (just to choose an example) by refusing to talk about racism. Quite the opposite.
    shit BL says

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    It's like with centaur girls, you're fucking a horse. Sure the human part is the one that moans but your dick is in the horse, no way around it.
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  12. #4772
    The Plesioth Hip Check Of Life Deathhappens's Avatar
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    So, I randomly (or not so randomly) tried picking up Chaosium's Call of Cthulhu (7e) quickplay manual, since despite vague familiarity with the setting I'd never actually gotten into the nitty-gritty of how the rules work (and at 50 full pages for a quickstart pdf, it seems there's a bit of grit to get through here indeed). No farther than the first page have I gone when lo and behold

    Quote Originally Posted by Call of Cthulhu 7th Edition Quick-Start Rules.pdf
    The game draws on the imaginative ideas and creations arising from the Cthulhu Mythos, while avoiding Lovecraft’s own distasteful personal views and racism, which have no place in the game.
    Now, I'm sure Lovecraft was probably pretty racist by modern day standards (just by virtue of having been born in the 19th century, if nothing else) but that anyone feels like this was a necessary disclaimer is... indicative of a mindset I'm not sure I agree with. On several levels.
    Last edited by Deathhappens; January 12th, 2024 at 05:45 PM.
    shit BL says

    Quote Originally Posted by I3uster View Post
    It's like with centaur girls, you're fucking a horse. Sure the human part is the one that moans but your dick is in the horse, no way around it.
    Quote Originally Posted by You View Post
    boytoy angst > fulfilling life of misanthropic extremist environmentalism
    Quote Originally Posted by Rafflesiac View Post
    ladies, he's single
    Quote Originally Posted by OverMaster View Post
    Yeah, but that's because he's got more issues than National Geographic.
    Quote Originally Posted by Araya's Dry Cleaner View Post
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    You are not getting government-handout waifus.


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  13. #4773
    Wyrd oft neređ unfǽgne eorl, ţonne his ellen déah... Skull's Avatar
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    Nothing will ever beat VtM's whole "don't be a fascist in real life" spiel though, that was worth a read if only for the lulz.
    "Here's a bangin lil' tune about takin' on The Man!"

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  14. #4774
    Drunk Anime Is The True Path. Mattias's Avatar
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    He was pretty racist by his own times as well. Shadow over Innsmouth was basically saying that mixing races is akin to fucking a fish. But not a hot fish like Shape of Water.
    Last edited by Mattias; January 12th, 2024 at 05:51 PM.
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  15. #4775
    The Plesioth Hip Check Of Life Deathhappens's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mattias View Post
    He was pretty racist by his own times as well. Shadow over Innsmouth was basically saying that mixing races is akin to fucking a fish. But not a hot fish like Shape of Water.
    Fine, so call him a racist, then. But for one thing, this disclaimer makes as much sense as a club having a sign "While we may play 50 Cent's music in this club, we do not support his distasteful views on height-challenged women, which have no place In Da Club". And for another, "have no place in this game" just rubs me the wrong way. No place on the table, absolutely (though again that's an issue for the GM and players to solve, making the disclaimer pointless). But in the game, it has as much place as death, injury, loss of sanity, pain emotional and physical, violence, prostitution, drug running, and any number of other distasteful or unfortunate topics that we visit in fiction precisely BECAUSE it's a safe vehicle to tackle them and learn more about them and through that about us, the people playing. There is a quote somewhere I'm sure I've brought up before that I can't seem to find now that goes something like this: "Fiction only has worth in what it tells us about ourselves. Everything else is just so much noise". I feel the need to repeat that more and more often, nowadays, which is just plain ODD when more and more genre-defying media like, idk, Slay The Princess seem to be seeing unexpected widespread success.
    Last edited by Deathhappens; January 13th, 2024 at 09:38 AM.
    shit BL says

    Quote Originally Posted by I3uster View Post
    It's like with centaur girls, you're fucking a horse. Sure the human part is the one that moans but your dick is in the horse, no way around it.
    Quote Originally Posted by You View Post
    boytoy angst > fulfilling life of misanthropic extremist environmentalism
    Quote Originally Posted by Rafflesiac View Post
    ladies, he's single
    Quote Originally Posted by OverMaster View Post
    Yeah, but that's because he's got more issues than National Geographic.
    Quote Originally Posted by Araya's Dry Cleaner View Post
    You can rage, but there is no waifu communism.

    You are not getting government-handout waifus.


    Once and always and nevermore.

  16. #4776
    アルテミット・ソット Ultimate Thot Five_X's Avatar
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    Capitalism is dying from internal as well as external causes, & its own leaders & beneficiaries are less & less able to kid themselves. I’m no economist, but from recent reading I’ve been able to form a rough picture of the dilemma—the need to restrict consumers’ goods & to pile up a needless plethora of producing equipment in order to maintain the irrational surplus called profit—which has caused orthodox economists like Hayek & Robbins to admit that only starvation wages & artificial scarcity could stabilize the profit system in future & avert increasing cyclical depressions of utterly destructive scope. Laissez-faire capitalism is dead—make no mistake about that. The only avenue of survival for plutocracy is a military & emotional fascism whereby millions of persons will be withdrawn from the industrial arena & placed on a dole or in concentration-camps with high-sounding patriotic names. That or socialism—take your choice. … All this from an antiquated mummy who was on the other side until 1931! Well—I can better understand the inert blindness & defiant ignorance of the reactionaries from having been one of them. I know how smugly ignorant I was…
    .
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  17. #4777
    闇色の六王権 The Dark Six Ratman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mattias View Post
    He was pretty racist by his own times as well. Shadow over Innsmouth was basically saying that mixing races is akin to fucking a fish. But not a hot fish like Shape of Water.
    I'll actually defend him on that one. Shadow over Innsmouth is quintessential cosmic horror, as it is about all about subverting the presumed superiority of sapience - similar to today's work of C.M. Kösemen. The protagonist realizes not only that the people in Innsmouth are animals, but that humans, fundamentally, are animals, and that he himself is an animal, and the sea is calling out to him. What is human reason against human nature?
    In fact, you'll find that a lot of Lovecraft's works deal with xenophobia as a subject directly; Colour out of Space is entirely Lovecraft describing his own fears of everything he does not understand through the protagonist (who is a stranger coming to an insular community, and himself is the one feared). The parallel is very obvious and direct, the crazy part is taking it to its logical conclusion.

    But yeah, Lovecraft is a rare case where you might genuinely want to put that disclaimer in so that GMs aren't surprised by leaving players after running a game wherein the players discover a terrifying subterranean colony containing countless frog-like eggs, each of them containing a black person about to hatch.

  18. #4778
    Drunk Anime Is The True Path. Mattias's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ratman View Post
    The protagonist realizes not only that the people in Innsmouth are animals, but that humans, fundamentally, are animals, and that he himself is an animal, and the sea is calling out to him. What is human reason against human nature?
    It might have come across better if he hadn't contemplated suicide at the end. Or is his older family member didn't succeed in that when he found out about their mixed blood.



    I also remember hearing form somewhere, maybe it was back in Uni, that just prior to writing Innsmouth Lovecraft found out his mother had significant Welsh heritage, so the story comes instead from his fears about himself. Because apparently the Welsh are fish?
    Last edited by Mattias; January 13th, 2024 at 01:25 AM.
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  19. #4779
    祖 Ancestor Ideofago's Avatar
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    I mean, the Welsh do have a strong fishing industry, as I would bet do most countries in the British archipelago.
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  20. #4780
    死徒二十七祖 The Twenty Seven Dead Apostle Ancestors
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    You know I have to wonder: why were TTRPGs able to get away with more stuff just say 15-20 years ago? Were players asking for these moralizing changes?

    Are these corporate cultures utterly terrified of social media campaigns hitting them because of someone getting angry about orcs being called barbaric raiders or something?

    Is it some mix of that and thinking they're truly progressive when they police language so much and go on the euphemism treadmill again and again?

    I have to wonder if the success of 5e brought in lots of new players who may have been sort of toxic for general TTRPG gaming culture in a way.

    But yeah, the big problem for D&D is modern WotC. If you had given 5e to say Kobold Press, Goodman Games, etc a superior edition would've been made.
    Last edited by warellis; January 23rd, 2024 at 03:22 AM.

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