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Old 05-08-2007, 09:32 PM   #1
RedHawke
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
D&D's been going for 30 years now and people have predicted its decline for years.
Not to mention the numerous crusades (In the 80's and 90's) against D&D because it is encouraging 'Devil Worship'!



Seriously I got called a Devil Worshipper and harassed when my freinds and I was going into the 'Games of Berkley' store in the mid 80's by some of these... nuts. Not fun. ;( Of course the Iron Maiden t-shirt I had on likely didn't help!


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Old 05-08-2007, 11:37 PM   #2
Jae Onasi
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Heh, when I came home to visit from college, I'd get asked at church (which is Baptist) what I was keeping busy with. I always said, "studying." I just neglected to add in the little detail that I was studying my characters sheet, the Oriental D&D book, the Player's Handbook....


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Old 05-09-2007, 08:58 PM   #3
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^^^^
I prefered the DM's Guide... in the Treasure Tables... you would find me there! Plotting! Muahahahaha! *Clears throat*

The Oriental Book was one of my favs, until the Second Ed. adopted the rules formally. The Skills and Powers book released late in the TSR AD&D days is one of my favs.

I miss THACO, and my glorious negative AC ratings. It encouraged using math and having to think, unlike the dumbed down lame D20 system. Not to mention the lameness that D20 calls "Feats" weapon skills are not feats. Example: Two Weapon Fighting is a learned 'skill' not a feat. Ambidexterity, now that's a 'feat'. But I digress.


"Beware the form-fitting black armor-clad Drow hottie with twin Mineral II Greensteel Khopeshes!"
"Liella d'Orien says, '"You're the fool, Devil. -- Witness the power of this fully ARMED and OPERATIONAL Titan!"'"
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Old 05-10-2007, 12:00 AM   #4
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I started playing D&D with Oriental Adventures in '86--I can't remember what edition we had then. We didn't read the DMG if we weren't DMing--ruined too many surprises, apparently. Plus, I was a poor college student and couldn't afford my own copy at that point, and my bf at the time had the only copy for our group. He usually was just wicked and would pull stuff out of the blue, however. It made sense with the story, but you just never could predict what he was going to come up with.

I may modify the game we're playing at home and require training for the 'learned' feats. It'll make a nice little side adventure, too.

Yes, heaven forbid we have to do real math. I remember THAC0, but it was so long between college gaming and current gaming in any kind of real manner that I forgot most of it, except for some vague recollections of big reference tables.... However, it's much easier for my kids to play with the current rules than it would have been with the old ones, and the game moves a little faster (always good with younger kids) so I don't gripe. They like moving the miniatures around more than adding the numbers on the dice to work up damage.

I have to say I like the latest version of stat blocks much better than the old ones. If they didn't have them organized that way already, I'd probably have made my own with some kind of similar style.

Do we have a D&D thread yet? If not, we should make one.


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Old 05-10-2007, 01:10 AM   #5
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Oh I had a huge stack of hardbound AD&D 1st edition books that I'd collected from 1984-1988. I think I had just about everyone except Wilderness Survial Guide. Manual of the Planes was my favorite followed by Deities and Demigods. And I know what you mean RH about staring at the Treasure Tables of the DM Guide... or reading about the Relics? Or about psionic powers in the Appendix?

When I was about 16 I sold them all in a garage sale. *sigh*
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Old 05-10-2007, 10:01 AM   #6
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I still have those books from yester-year... and i couldn't count the dice I have lying around

Unearthed Arcana and the introduction of Comeliness. Finally an ability that definitively separated 'looks' from Charisma! I had so many debates with my friends that even pretty people don't always make great leaders


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Old 05-10-2007, 12:57 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedHawke
I miss THACO, and my glorious negative AC ratings. It encouraged using math and having to think, unlike the dumbed down lame D20 system. Not to mention the lameness that D20 calls "Feats" weapon skills are not feats. Example: Two Weapon Fighting is a learned 'skill' not a feat. Ambidexterity, now that's a 'feat'. But I digress.
Oh, don't get me started. D20-bashing is a particular hobby-horse of mine. Not that it's a particularly terrible system, but it was hopelessly outdated when it hit the streets and has NOTHING to do with the (A)D&D games.

And yes, I still have my 1st Ed. AD&D player's handbook. Didn't use it so much, though - I was more of a 2e nerd for many years. Heck, I still run a 2e game, which the old gaming gang won't let us quit. Maybe I'm just an old-timer in this regard, but I've never been so swayed by the whole d20/3e thing. The worst part is really all the new feats/spells/classes they keep dreaming up in every new bloody supplement. That smells far too much like munchkin fanboy to me, and not in a good way either...

Besides, you can't even get people enraged about D&D anymore. It was much better in the old days, when we were devilworshippers just for having tried that infernal game

Honestly, there are so pretty strange people out there with some rather odd ideas. Have you seen any of Jack Chick's stuff? That man needs help... Seriously! I mean just look at it:

http://www.chick.com/reading/tracts/0046/0046_01.asp


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Old 05-10-2007, 02:19 PM   #8
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Ahhh Dnd a current fun past time for me I play the 3.5v version with a coulple of freinds its a great laugh though I wish more people played.


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Old 05-10-2007, 09:50 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
Yes, heaven forbid we have to do real math. I remember THAC0, but it was so long between college gaming and current gaming in any kind of real manner that I forgot most of it, except for some vague recollections of big reference tables....
There weren't any "tables" THACO was To Hit AC 0, so if you had a thaco of 10 then you would hit an ac of 1 on a 9, an ac of -1 on an 11... simple. Simpler on the GM as well since your players could tell you the ac they hit, IMO anyway. The DM/GM had all the 'tables'.

There was an RPG made about James Bond... now if you ever want to talk about an RPG with a bunch of tables.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
However, it's much easier for my kids to play with the current rules than it would have been with the old ones, and the game moves a little faster (always good with younger kids) so I don't gripe. They like moving the miniatures around more than adding the numbers on the dice to work up damage.
I never liked using miniatures... description only was always more fun, and with the correct 'atmosphere' in the room it could be epic.

Though there were always exceptions to this (like for major fights).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
I have to say I like the latest version of stat blocks much better than the old ones. If they didn't have them organized that way already, I'd probably have made my own with some kind of similar style.
They are the same stats as the old D&D?

If you mean the simplistic formulaic attribute bonuses (+1 for every 2 points past 10), that doesn't really work... it simplifies the game yes, but it makes it less by doing so.

Having a fighter with a Str of 20+ used to really mean something it was not commonplace (You would need an item, a divine 'gift', or have found and studied the 2 different stat tomes/mauals to do so)... now in D20 every fighter above level 8 easily has that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
Do we have a D&D thread yet? If not, we should make one.
Looks like someone else agreed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jediphile
Oh, don't get me started. D20-bashing is a particular hobby-horse of mine.
Me too! We have something in common this is scary!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jediphile
Not that it's a particularly terrible system, but it was hopelessly outdated when it hit the streets and has NOTHING to do with the (A)D&D games.
I agree, though my dislike of the system stems from the destruction of the D6 Star Wars system to the crap that is the D20 Star Wars system.

The D20 system is an ok system for possibly trying to hook kids on the idea of playing RPG's, it is a simple-er game system to learn (I do know of some far simpler ones though that are good 'learner' games), but D20 will never be D&D for me. If I play (A)D&D it is Second Edition all the way.

To me D20 is 'the' game for the ADD Button-Mashing Console Kiddies, it is much more a short attention span game.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jediphile
Maybe I'm just an old-timer in this regard, but I've never been so swayed by the whole d20/3e thing.
Me neither. I think of 2Ed. with the "If it aint broke, don't fix it!" attitude, because the system sure isn't 'broke'.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jediphile
The worst part is really all the new feats/spells/classes they keep dreaming up in every new bloody supplement. That smells far too much like munchkin fanboy to me, and not in a good way either...
Agreed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jediphile
Besides, you can't even get people enraged about D&D anymore. It was much better in the old days, when we were devilworshippers just for having tried that infernal game


"Beware the form-fitting black armor-clad Drow hottie with twin Mineral II Greensteel Khopeshes!"
"Liella d'Orien says, '"You're the fool, Devil. -- Witness the power of this fully ARMED and OPERATIONAL Titan!"'"
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Old 05-10-2007, 10:04 PM   #10
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I read some D&D sourcebooks and I did enjoy their in-game fiction. Sad to say that I have not actually played any D&D as of yet, but I know they are a big influence in all tabletop games, and I hope to engage in a D&D game in the future, if I have time. However, I don't really care what rule system is used, for the tabletop games I play in, whatever the GM says goes.


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Old 05-11-2007, 12:10 AM   #11
Jae Onasi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedHawke
There weren't any "tables" THACO was To Hit AC 0, so if you had a thaco of 10 then you would hit an ac of 1 on a 9, an ac of -1 on an 11... simple. Simpler on the GM as well since your players could tell you the ac they hit, IMO anyway. The DM/GM had all the 'tables'.
I told you it'd been a long time....20 years is quite awhile to remember these details.
Well, I knew the definition of THAC0 --it's possible that I was thinking of tables for something else then. If I still have my books, they're in some boxes in the basement. I'll have to see if I can find them now. I may actually have the SW RPG.
Quote:
Originally Posted by RedHawke
There was an RPG made about James Bond... now if you ever want to talk about an RPG with a bunch of tables.
I preferred Car Wars with all the catalogs. I loved all the different colors of paint you could throw on other cars--red, blue, green, yellow, white, black, purple, fluorescent orange, lime green, peacock blue, metallic gold, a mauvey shade of pinky-russet....`

Quote:
Originally Posted by RedHawke
I never liked using miniatures... description only was always more fun, and with the correct 'atmosphere' in the room it could be epic.
I prefer it that way myself especially since that's what we did in college and I have fond memories of great times with my friends imagining my shape-shifting (raccoon) bushi getting into all sorts of trouble. However, my kids are far more concrete at this point in life, so play is really different. It's a pain to have to blow up the maps and it takes up a lot more space on the table. But if it means our kids can play with us, it works for me. I can picture strategy and tactics in my head, but they can't at age 9 and 6. My daughter, believe it or not, does play more than I expected. At first she just liked rolling the dice and moving the character around on the board. Now she actually makes her character talk. Granted it's in a terribly cheesy fake British accent, but it's the thought that counts.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RedHawke
They are the same stats as the old D&D?
Monster stat blocks--probably close to the same info, just organized in an easier to read format. I have no idea if the stats are the same for monsters between 2 and 3.5 or not. That's what the books are for--so I don't have to memorize that stuff.
Quote:
Originally Posted by RedHawke
If you mean the simplistic formulaic attribute bonuses (+1 for every 2 points past 10), that doesn't really work... it simplifies the game yes, but it makes it less by doing so.
Having a fighter with a Str of 20+ used to really mean something it was not commonplace (You would need an item, a divine 'gift', or have found and studied the 2 different stat tomes/mauals to do so)... now in D20 every fighter above level 8 easily has that.
That is one thing I'd agree with you on for sure--I remember it being a lot tougher to get to that level, too, and you had to work hard to find magic items. I'm using some published campaigns to get used to the 3.5 system (and because I'm plain rusty in the DM department). I've had to max the hp of the monsters in our campaign because it was just too easy otherwise using the average. I also feel like it's a little too easy to level up, but that could be because a. we're playing very low level characters, and b. I'm rusty.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RedHawke
The D20 system is an ok system for possibly trying to hook kids on the idea of playing RPG's, it is a simple-er game system to learn (I do know of some far simpler ones though that are good 'learner' games), but D20 will never be D&D for me. If I play (A)D&D it is Second Edition all the way.
There's nothing saying people can't play earlier editions. It wouldn't be that hard to convert the information in all these new books into something compatible to AD&D. Granted not everything is going to be adjustable, but most would be.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RedHawke
To me D20 is 'the' game for the ADD Button-Mashing Console Kiddies, it is much more a short attention span game.
In defense of the system though, if you're fairly new to the game, 3.5 gets you into gaming a lot faster than 2 did. We still have to look things up in the books, but not as much as i remember when learning AD&D. We're not getting bogged down too often with rules, and the couple times we have I just made a temporary ruling and we went on and I checked it out later. It's freed us up to do more 'pretend' and role-playing--which is what it's supposed to be all about. However, I've never been one (not saying you are, either) to allow the rules to get in the way of the story.

I still haven't admitted to my pastor that I play D&D. And we go to that church every week. I wouldn't hide it from him, but I figure what he doesn't know won't hurt anyone.


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Old 05-11-2007, 09:31 PM   #12
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a mauvey shade of pinky-russet....
Hmm... Where have I heard that before?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
In defense of the system though, if you're fairly new to the game, 3.5 gets you into gaming a lot faster than 2 did.
There is no defence of that system!

"The D20 system is an ok system for possibly trying to hook kids on the idea of playing RPG's, it is a simple-er game system to learn."


"Beware the form-fitting black armor-clad Drow hottie with twin Mineral II Greensteel Khopeshes!"
"Liella d'Orien says, '"You're the fool, Devil. -- Witness the power of this fully ARMED and OPERATIONAL Titan!"'"
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Old 05-11-2007, 10:15 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedHawke
There is no defence of that system!

"The D20 system is an ok system for possibly trying to hook kids on the idea of playing RPG's, it is a simple-er game system to learn."
It's not just that it's simpler to learn (which it is)--it's also a quicker set-up and battles seem to move faster. It doesn't bug me that much either way as an adult--I could play either way. In terms of keeping young kids in the game longer, 3.5 seems to be a little easier to use. I don't know if that's a selling point though--"So easy a 6 year old can use it!!"

And as long as we have fun role-playing and telling the story, that's the important thing for us.


From MST3K's spoof of "Hercules Unchained"--heard as Roman medic soldiers carry off an unconscious Greek Hercules on a 1950's Army green canvas stretcher: "Hi, we're IX-I-I. Did somebody dial IX-I-I?"

Read The Adventures of Jolee Bindo and see the amazing Peep Surgery
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Old 05-12-2007, 07:55 AM   #14
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The problem 3.5e/d20 is that the system is founded on an incredibly forced class- and level-based core.

While this can be deemed reasonable to some extent for D&D in light of earlier version of the game, it is terrible for games like Star Wars RPG or, especially, Call of Cthulhu. I mean, they have EXPERIENCE LEVELS in CoC now for crying out loud!!! Anyone who ever played any of Chaosium's original versions of the game should realise in a few seconds just how utterly pointless that is!

And given that d20 revised D&D so severely that it was willing to kill off many of the "holy cows" of the past, it is inexcusable that the system is as rigid and inflexible as it is. A revision was necessary, yes - the old 2e system was horribly outdated. The problem with 3e is that it tries to fix all the things that didn't need fixing while holding onto all of those who were praying for revision. Classes are still heavily enforced, and the skill system is dictated far more than it ever was before. Sure, you can take whatever skill you want, but if you don't choose the "right ones" for your class and keep pumping them up, then your skills are utterly, utterly useless. That's what d20 is the worst system around - it tries to masquerade as an "open system of choices" when it's really anything but that.

There are far more elegant systems than d20 around. Indeed, I haven't seen a worse system made this millennium. I'll choose GURPS or WW's World of Darkness system over d20 any day of the week!


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Old 05-12-2007, 09:45 AM   #15
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There's definitely a hack-and-slash mentality since you get XP for destroying anything and everything--that part I don't like. I'm just now reading WoD after playing VtMB (and deciding I really can't play that til the kids get older unless I can find a group here in town that plays). I like how they reward 'quests completed' instead of 'things destroyed'--that makes more sense to me. In fact, it took me awhile playing VtM to be comfortable with the concept 'hey, I don't _have_ to kill all these guys--I can sneak around them/lure them away'. With the XP In D&D there's no real incentive built into the game to solve a problem in a creative way, like finding a secret door to get to a room that bypasses the monsters. That's always been an issue for that game. Unless you have a good GM. In some of the published adventures the writers are now starting to say 'if they manage to make the monster happy and not kill him, give them the XP they'd normally get plus x amount for creativity'.

Why you'd want to have a fighter class and just pick 'scribe scroll' for the heck of it I don't know, so yeah, that skill would be useless. In some respects WoD is just as artificial--I have a decent dexterity, but that doesn't give me automatic knowledge of lockpicking or using firearms, and there are no skills outside the ones in the game (which admittedly are quite a few). Your clan does limit your choices somewhat--if you pick a Ventrue you're going to go for different skills than if you play Nosferatu, and in the computer game at least, since your disciplines are set, it does drive the skill levels you pick to a certain extent.

All that being said, a good GM will work with the strengths and around the limitations of the game for the sake of creating a good story for his/her particular group. If you have a fighter who's picked up a funky skill, a good GM can work with that and capitalize on that to create opportunities in the game that s/he might not ordinarily have with a 'regular' character, even if the skill choice is really dumb. So yeah, some skills work better with some classes than others, but that doesn't mean they're always useless. Right now our family game has a party of 2 paladins and a rogue (Jimbo of course. ). Jimbo decided to cross-class as a wizard to add in some magic-using for the party. I'll probably use the tips in DMG 2 to create a prestige class for him to meet the needs of our particular campaign. I think there's one in the 'Complete Adventurer' already but I think with the particular set of skills in our party we'll end up needing something more tailor-made.

In any case, we're having a good time playing together, which is the important thing.


From MST3K's spoof of "Hercules Unchained"--heard as Roman medic soldiers carry off an unconscious Greek Hercules on a 1950's Army green canvas stretcher: "Hi, we're IX-I-I. Did somebody dial IX-I-I?"

Read The Adventures of Jolee Bindo and see the amazing Peep Surgery
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Old 05-12-2007, 11:08 AM   #16
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I still have a pile of first-ed rulebooks, several years of Dragon Mags (going from ish. #40-something, to about 120-something,) a fairly large stack of modules, boxes full of lead figurines (some of them actually painted...) and a small crate of polyhedral dice.

Sometimes I miss those days.

I was 10 in 1980. All my friends in school played it, so I got pretty involved for a few years. Now that I look back I realize that at the time we had no real idea how to actually play the game by anything close to the rules or intent,.. but we had a good time anyway.


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Old 05-12-2007, 12:10 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
There's definitely a hack-and-slash mentality since you get XP for destroying anything and everything--that part I don't like. I'm just now reading WoD after playing VtMB (and deciding I really can't play that til the kids get older unless I can find a group here in town that plays). I like how they reward 'quests completed' instead of 'things destroyed'--that makes more sense to me. In fact, it took me awhile playing VtM to be comfortable with the concept 'hey, I don't _have_ to kill all these guys--I can sneak around them/lure them away'. With the XP In D&D there's no real incentive built into the game to solve a problem in a creative way, like finding a secret door to get to a room that bypasses the monsters. That's always been an issue for that game. Unless you have a good GM. In some of the published adventures the writers are now starting to say 'if they manage to make the monster happy and not kill him, give them the XP they'd normally get plus x amount for creativity'.
Heck, I'd give more xp than killing the monster would kill, since that's a greater challenge. Sometimes that means capturing the monster, which is definitely more difficult than just putting a sword in it.

I do give out xp for kills in my 2e game, but only for monsters, not for treasure claimed, because getting the treasure is a reward in itself. And 2e xp awards for killing monsters are horribly low. Good luck to anyone wanting to rise to high levels doing so in my campaign - it'll take a long time indeed.

Instead I give out story goal awards. In short, if the PCs are able to achieve a goal, especially if they can do it well, then they get extra xp for that. And those xp are much, much larger than anything they can get for monster-slashing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
Why you'd want to have a fighter class and just pick 'scribe scroll' for the heck of it I don't know, so yeah, that skill would be useless. In some respects WoD is just as artificial--I have a decent dexterity, but that doesn't give me automatic knowledge of lockpicking or using firearms, and there are no skills outside the ones in the game (which admittedly are quite a few). Your clan does limit your choices somewhat--if you pick a Ventrue you're going to go for different skills than if you play Nosferatu, and in the computer game at least, since your disciplines are set, it does drive the skill levels you pick to a certain extent.
If Vampire or Werewolf are too dark, then I recommend Exalted:

http://www.white-wolf.com/exalted/index.php

It basically uses the same system, but the characters are all semi-gods in a japanese-inspired fantasy world similar to the anime-movie Ninja Scroll. There's a huge backstory to go through, but it's all very interesting and compelling. Sure, there are also some truly dark areas - like with the Abyssals - but you don't need to go anywhere near them as GM, if you don't want to - you just need to know as GM that they are there and why.

Of course, you could also do what I'm currently considering, which is running my existing D&D game world with GURPS Fantasy/Magic rules.

Your point about xp for achievements instead of monster-slashing is my point out 3.Xe/d20 being "outdated". Most RPGs have long since abandoned the idea that good role-playing is based on hack 'n slash, but with 3e, D&D seemed to insist on returning to the roots of monster-slashing and dungeon-crawling. 2e isn't that much better, of course, but 2e hails way back from the late 80s when tabletop RPGs were barely out of their infancy. And 2e tried purposefully to stay very close to 1e AD&D.

3e, however, makes a point of being a totally different game. That's fine, but for a new system that tries to not be a mere revision of earlier editions, it is incredibly inflexible and rigid for a game system released in the last decade. 2e Player Option rules had far more flexibility than 3e/3.5e has. And 3.Xe also insists on stupid and cumbersome rules like how spellcasters provoke attacks of opportunity if they cast spells near an enemy. That was not in there before. I particularly dislike that rule because it makes wizards more extreme while it also forces them to build the Concentration skill. A low-level wizard has always been puny in D&D - the worst and most limited character you could ever play. Now he's even worse. If the wizard went high levels, however, he was virtually godlike. Now he is even worse in that area, because he can probably concentrate his spells through any attack. That also was not allowed before. High-leveled wizards were already the most powerful characters in 2e. Now they are even worse at low levels and even more undefeatable at high ones.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
All that being said, a good GM will work with the strengths and around the limitations of the game for the sake of creating a good story for his/her particular group. If you have a fighter who's picked up a funky skill, a good GM can work with that and capitalize on that to create opportunities in the game that s/he might not ordinarily have with a 'regular' character, even if the skill choice is really dumb. So yeah, some skills work better with some classes than others, but that doesn't mean they're always useless. Right now our family game has a party of 2 paladins and a rogue (Jimbo of course. ). Jimbo decided to cross-class as a wizard to add in some magic-using for the party. I'll probably use the tips in DMG 2 to create a prestige class for him to meet the needs of our particular campaign. I think there's one in the 'Complete Adventurer' already but I think with the particular set of skills in our party we'll end up needing something more tailor-made.
Decent rules are no substitute for a good GM. Heck, a good GM can make any game work, no matter how stupid the rules are. Because a good GM also know when to throw the rules out. I really don't care how many millions of hit points that fighter has - if he falls from a mountain for a mile onto sharp, pointed while wearing his platemail, then he's dead. Period! I don't care what the bloody rules say! And if you uber-Sith Lord is still aboard that stardestroyer when the rebels destroy it, then you're also dead - I don't care how powerful your character is or what force-powers he had!

I still run a campaign on 2e rules, which we all agree are highly inflexible and inferior to most other rules out there. But it doesn't matter because the campaign works and the characters are interesting. The first is my credits, since I run the campaign and its plots, and the second is to my players' credit, because they've made good characters with rich backgrounds. Sure, that ranger in my campaign might be so good with the bow that he can outshoot Legolas, but that's incidental - it's not the reason why the player will never forget the character.

A good GM can even make 3e work. The question is why he or she would want to? I run 2e because it's convenient to the campaign world I like. 3e, however, just recycles old campaign worlds like FR and GH, so unless it's something original like Eberron, there really is no need.

And for the record, yes, I have played 3e as both player and GM. I've even written adventures for 3e, even though I don't like the system (and no, I won't tell anyone where they can download those).


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Old 05-15-2007, 10:21 AM   #18
Jae Onasi
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Originally Posted by Jediphile
Heck, I'd give more xp than killing the monster would kill, since that's a greater challenge. Sometimes that means capturing the monster, which is definitely more difficult than just putting a sword in it.
Definitely. I've _never_ given xp for finding treasure--treasure is its own reward.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jediphile
Instead I give out story goal awards. In short, if the PCs are able to achieve a goal, especially if they can do it well, then they get extra xp for that. And those xp are much, much larger than anything they can get for monster-slashing.
If I make up a home-brew I'll likely do that as well. For right now hack-and-slash is exciting for the kids, and works for them since their idea of politics at this point is making sure the cookies and milk are divvied up fairly. I love political intrigue and maneuvering and talking my way through something, but it wouldn't work for kids as young as ours. Hopefully when they're older we can start incorporating that (sneaky way to work in some education on different aspects of Real World political systems.... )

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jediphile
If Vampire or Werewolf are too dark, then I recommend Exalted:

http://www.white-wolf.com/exalted/index.php
I'll check it out--our local gaming store has a White Wolf section, and my kids are starting to get into anime. Vampire's not too dark for me (I'm having a great time with VtMB), but I'm not ready to have my 9 year old considering how best to use larceny and stunt-driving skills.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jediphile
Of course, you could also do what I'm currently considering, which is running my existing D&D game world with GURPS Fantasy/Magic rules.
If I weren't running a published campaign and getting the rust out, I'd consider that.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jediphile
Your point about xp for achievements instead of monster-slashing is my point out 3.Xe/d20 being "outdated". Most RPGs have long since abandoned the idea that good role-playing is based on hack 'n slash,
Well, it's kind of standard D&D, and people apparently want that, because they're buying the books. That's its personality and I expect lots of monster-killing and trap-disabling and dungeon-crawling in D&D. I can knock it for doing that in kind of dumb ways at times, but I can't knock it for being what it's always been, which is 'go on a quest, kill the bad monsters, find the treasure'. Monopoly can't be anything but Monopoly, and D&D can't be anything but D&D, either. No game system is ever going to be perfect, and I'm OK with some of the limitations, and other things I'll just adjust to our particular situation (how many parents play D&D with young kids? I'm sure they're out there, but so far I've only heard of us)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jediphile
And 3.Xe also insists on stupid and cumbersome rules like how spellcasters provoke attacks of opportunity if they cast spells near an enemy. That was not in there before.
Attacks of Opportunity and when to apply them is driving me crazy. I understand the idea behind it (even if you have initiative, if you're doing an action that takes a long time and the other guy's doing something that's quicker, he could still hit before you). However, implementing it into the game is a nightmare for those of us who haven't used it before, especially since Jimbo and I know how battles have run with the older rules. I've been trying to give it a fair trial because it could be a learning curve issue, i.e. once we're all more familiar with it and have more actions that provoke AoO memorized, things will go more quickly. I hate to throw something out just because it's not what I'm used to. Right now, though, all it's doing is slowing the fights way down while we consult tables in the PH and on the DM screen to figure out who can do what, when, and where. I also don't like having to adjudicate arguments on whether x action provokes an AoO or not if we can't find it on the tables right away (because the DM screen is missing a few things and we're tired of looking through books). The consensus right now is that it's a big pain in the butt and unnecessarily complicates a battle, and we're seriously considering throwing out AoO entirely.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jediphile
Decent rules are no substitute for a good GM. Heck, a good GM can make any game work, no matter how stupid the rules are....And if you uber-Sith Lord is still aboard that stardestroyer when the rebels destroy it, then you're also dead - I don't care how powerful your character is or what force-powers he had!
Dead is dead.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jediphile
I still run a campaign on 2e rules, which we all agree are highly inflexible and inferior to most other rules out there. But it doesn't matter because the campaign works and the characters are interesting.
For all its faults, 3.5 has a huge number of resources available. Theoretically I could convert those things over to 2e (if I could even find my 2e book at this point), but I don't feel like working that hard. I just want to open up the books and play.


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Old 05-15-2007, 12:46 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
I'll check it out--our local gaming store has a White Wolf section, and my kids are starting to get into anime. Vampire's not too dark for me (I'm having a great time with VtMB), but I'm not ready to have my 9 year old considering how best to use larceny and stunt-driving skills.
Yes, with 9 year olds, that's definitely a consideration. I play exclusively with adult players these days (even if we do play 2e AD&D), so I have the luxury of adding far more complex material and deep plots to the games. Heck, we can go for several gaming sessions without ever having a fight or looking at a map... Yes, in AD&D

If your kids are getting into anime already, then they should love Exalted, though. Basically all players are Solars, returned demigods, who are seen as demons by the general population. Usually you can't see that, but if they use their specific powers (and Solars can hand the standard characters of Vampire or Werewolf their behinds...), then they can begin glowing like the sun and reveal their status as presumed "anathema". Half the game is keeping your true nature secret, but it depends a lot on how hostile you want to make the local population, of course. I do recommend you take a look though. It's great fun. And the rules even try to reward you for attempting wild, heroic actions by giving you extra dice to achieve success. I do miss playing it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
Well, it's kind of standard D&D, and people apparently want that, because they're buying the books. That's its personality and I expect lots of monster-killing and trap-disabling and dungeon-crawling in D&D. I can knock it for doing that in kind of dumb ways at times, but I can't knock it for being what it's always been, which is 'go on a quest, kill the bad monsters, find the treasure'. Monopoly can't be anything but Monopoly, and D&D can't be anything but D&D, either. No game system is ever going to be perfect, and I'm OK with some of the limitations, and other things I'll just adjust to our particular situation (how many parents play D&D with young kids? I'm sure they're out there, but so far I've only heard of us)
Well, to me D&D is not merely monster-slashing and dungeoncrawls. To me it's just heroic fantasy. And the 3e rules are VERY different from the earlier editions in how everything is set up. I mean, multiclassed paladin/monk/sorceror dwarves are fine now. Huh?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
Attacks of Opportunity and when to apply them is driving me crazy. I understand the idea behind it (even if you have initiative, if you're doing an action that takes a long time and the other guy's doing something that's quicker, he could still hit before you). However, implementing it into the game is a nightmare for those of us who haven't used it before, especially since Jimbo and I know how battles have run with the older rules. I've been trying to give it a fair trial because it could be a learning curve issue, i.e. once we're all more familiar with it and have more actions that provoke AoO memorized, things will go more quickly. I hate to throw something out just because it's not what I'm used to. Right now, though, all it's doing is slowing the fights way down while we consult tables in the PH and on the DM screen to figure out who can do what, when, and where. I also don't like having to adjudicate arguments on whether x action provokes an AoO or not if we can't find it on the tables right away (because the DM screen is missing a few things and we're tired of looking through books). The consensus right now is that it's a big pain in the butt and unnecessarily complicates a battle, and we're seriously considering throwing out AoO entirely.
Can't blame you for that. Not sure I ever saw the point in it. I'm fine with the 2e way of doing things - if you're struck my someone, then your spell is gone. Period. Even if you took no damage. Simple and easy to use.

As for tables, I've encounter the problem of missing tables from the book myself, although in my case that was mostly because of my style. I find I can never play a game straight out of the box, because I need to make it fit my style first, which means house rules. For 2e Player Option rules I have a 100+ page Word document with revised critical hit tables, expanded proficiency lists, etc., which obviously aren't on the GM screen. However, I found other tables from the DMG missing from the screen...

Annoying, but there's a way around it that make work for you too. You see, as I found tables missing, I also found myself flipping through the DMG or PHB. Eventually I began making notes of which tables I always looked up. That gave me a list of what was missing. I then copied that to a piece of paper or typed it out (since I have the AD&D Core Rules v2.0 CD-ROM, that's pretty easy) and printed it. Then I used paperclips to put the extra papers over the DM screen. Works beautifully. I have to look under the clipped-on notes at times, but other than that it's all good. And my time spent looking in the books did not so much drop as plummet

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
For all its faults, 3.5 has a huge number of resources available. Theoretically I could convert those things over to 2e (if I could even find my 2e book at this point), but I don't feel like working that hard. I just want to open up the books and play.
Ah well. Given my nature to make a game fit my style, that would never work for me. I've been considering GURPS, but there are things in there that I find a little simple as well... I've even planned my own RPG system, but it's on hold indefinitely because the combat system I'd want would take ages to write (not to mention, combat experience that I don't have...)


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Old 05-15-2007, 02:53 PM   #20
Jae Onasi
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Originally Posted by Jediphile
Yes, with 9 year olds, that's definitely a consideration. I play exclusively with adult players these days (even if we do play 2e AD&D), so I have the luxury of adding far more complex material and deep plots to the games. Heck, we can go for several gaming sessions without ever having a fight or looking at a map... Yes, in AD&D
Oh, I'm not meaning to knock other versions of D&D. I was just pointing out 3e has its good points along with the annoying ones. It's kind of like martial arts--there's no martial art that's 'better' than another one--the 'best' one is the one that meets _your_ needs. If 2e works better for you and everyone's having fun, great.
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Originally Posted by Jediphile
If your kids are getting into anime already, then they should love Exalted, though...And the rules even try to reward you for attempting wild, heroic actions by giving you extra dice to achieve success.
Heh, my son is really into the hero thing right now. Sounds like it'd be fun to GM too.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jediphile
Well, to me D&D is not merely monster-slashing and dungeoncrawls. To me it's just heroic fantasy. And the 3e rules are VERY different from the earlier editions in how everything is set up. I mean, multiclassed paladin/monk/sorceror dwarves are fine now. Huh?
I would exercise my Ultimate Powers as DM to disallow that particular character. There _are_ limits. As the kids mature I imagine the gaming style will also mature. I'd also like to have the home where our kids and their friends can game and stay out of trouble, and if it means playing 3e (or whatever incarnation happens in 5 years), I'm fine with that. We can adjust the rules to work for us. Of course, that'll mean the fridge is empty for a good 10 years....

The other thing is that we're within reasonable driving distance of GenCon, and I'd like to have a decent familiarity with the rules to possibly participate in a game or 2. My son actually asked me a few months ago if we could go. I was not expecting that out of a 9 year old.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jediphile
Can't blame you for that. Not sure I ever saw the point in it. I'm fine with the 2e way of doing things - if you're struck my someone, then your spell is gone. Period. Even if you took no damage. Simple and easy to use.
Yeah, that in particular always made better sense to me, though I can understand the concentration thing because I can concentrate well enough to tune out the world. Probably couldn't in the middle of a battle, though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jediphile
For 2e Player Option rules I have a 100+ page Word document with revised critical hit tables, expanded proficiency lists, etc., which obviously aren't on the GM screen. However, I found other tables from the DMG missing from the screen... I then copied that to a piece of paper or typed it out (since I have the AD&D Core Rules v2.0 CD-ROM, that's pretty easy) and printed it. Then I used paperclips to put the extra papers over the DM screen. Works beautifully. I have to look under the clipped-on notes at times, but other than that it's all good. And my time spent looking in the books did not so much drop as plummet
I may get some excel spreadsheets for some of these tables and just keep it on my laptop and have that on the table with me. Anything to speed up gameplay and not have our noses stuck in books is A Good Thing. I have all the PCs, NPCs, and monster stats on 4x6 index cards and have a filebox to keep them all. I just photocopy the stat blocks out of the book and tape them on the card. Works really well during battles--no book flipping, and I can put everyone in initiative order easily. I have a 'counter' card to keep track of rounds that I put at the end of the stack--it's not seeing a lot of action right now since it's such a low-level game, but it'll get useful for keeping track of multiple spell effects later. I probably could do that on computer, too, but I like to handle my own character sheets like I like to roll my own dice.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jediphile
Ah well. Given my nature to make a game fit my style, that would never work for me.
Well, it doesn't mean we're slaves to the system, but it's easier to work within a game paradigm if you follow most of the rules. D&D has so many different things available that it's hard not to find something that will work most of the time, and we can add/subtract things as needed for the times when we decide that WotC must have been smoking something funny when they wrote a particular rule.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jediphile
I've even planned my own RPG system, but it's on hold indefinitely because the combat system I'd want would take ages to write (not to mention, combat experience that I don't have...)
Heh, Jimbo and I have been in a Renaissance group for 20 years. We've seen combat, or at least as close as anyone's going to get in a non-choreographed tourney or major battle (i.e. about 2000 on each side) using solid bamboo instead of real steel weapons so we don't kill each other on accident. We might be able to answer some of your combat questions, at least.


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Old 05-16-2007, 02:29 AM   #21
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I have a memory of one campaign where our party had a kobold scout leading the way through a cave and led us into an ambush. After we survived that, we caught up the escaping traitor. My friend's wizard gave him a Flesh to Stone spell. He walked around the kobold statue cursing him. Then to add insult to injury, followed up with a Turn Stone to Mud. I enjoyed that.
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Old 05-16-2007, 09:56 PM   #22
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I remember one Pacificon game where one of the pre-made characters I was handed to play was a Paladin (with a 5 Int). The group made elaborate plans for how we were going to go into the dragons cave and kill it, they prepped for almost 2 hours (these people were good in every detail, even sent the Rogue in to scout the place out, much role-playing went on). My Pally's job was vital to get the dragons attention allowing the casters and rogue to get surprise attacks (the one vital flaw in all their plans is they never told me when to do this and didn't take my low Int into account) so after all that planning we went in and I got an Int check and failed miserably so lo and behold before anyone could get into place my Pally started to do his job and shouted...

Dragon! Oh Dragon!

The party wipe was spectacular! Oh and the Paladin lived!

There is another one where our group was fighting a Forgotten Realms Wyrm Red Dragon and during the combat our fighter lost his weapon and the dragon was performing a coup' de' gras on him by lowering her head to him and taking a victory gloat before roasting him alive. He did something... rash... when she did that he reached out and kissed her... she failed her save and immediately flew away. (Unbeknownst to our fighter she had never had that happen and became somewhat smitten/facinated by the fighter).

Afterward beautiful crimson haired elf would follow the party around at a discreet distance and every once in a while that Red Dragon or Elf would come out of nowhere and 'protect' the fighter even though that 'protection' included bar maids, princesses and the like.


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Old 05-17-2007, 01:13 AM   #23
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Last gaming session we had, our fearless heroes searched through a kitchen area. My son, who is playing a Paladin, piped up and said "Hey, there's a fireplace. Can we roast marshmallows?"

I may have to incorporate that into a dragon's weapon or unusual skill or something....


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Old 05-17-2007, 12:01 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Jae Onasi
Last gaming session we had, our fearless heroes searched through a kitchen area. My son, who is playing a Paladin, piped up and said "Hey, there's a fireplace. Can we roast marshmallows?"

I may have to incorporate that into a dragon's weapon or unusual skill or something....

... Marshmellows eh? Your son has chose a great class to play. Paldins are dangerous. Though I usually play the mage. My Dm came up with a skill when it included cooking using a craft cookery check then giving different modifiers for what we cooked on.


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Old 06-01-2007, 03:11 AM   #25
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I'll check it out--our local gaming store has a White Wolf section, and my kids are starting to get into anime. Vampire's not too dark for me (I'm having a great time with VtMB), but I'm not ready to have my 9 year old considering how best to use larceny and stunt-driving skills.
Check out http://www.white-wolf.com/downloads.php?category_id=15

Its an introductory rule set for World of Darkness. The examples given are for Vampire the Requiem, but the rule set applies to all of White Wolf's WoD pnp games. It will let you know if the World of Darkness is for you.
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Old 06-01-2007, 11:01 AM   #26
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Thanks, zinervadonella.

OK, I just had to share this because it's _so_ 9 year old boy.... Toto's playing a paladin, of course. The brave little party of the kids' 2 paladins (Brom and Eragon) and Jimbo's halfling rogue/wizard (Bono) had just finished cleaning up a group of sleeping hobgoblins. Bono Hairfoot had just snuck around the room and silently slit their throats. Then the party had in the next room taken out one other hobgoblin and captured another, questioned him about the Slaughtergarde lab, and chained him up til they were ready to leave the area. Well, after all this, Toto was getting a little tired and punchy, and out of the blue looked at Jimbo, started giggling, and said "Brom pees on Bono." I was laughing so hard I couldn't talk, much less do anything. Jimbo opened his mouth in surprise, and then laughed at our giggling son. Then he said, "Bono's casting magic missile at a strategic spot on Brom."
Now I have to figure out how to adjudicate _that_ next session....

Edit: Brom took 2 points of groin damage. This dropped his hit points just enough that when he got nailed by the howler, he nearly died. It took him down to -1. He got to -8 before making the stabilizing roll. That'll teach him to pee on others....


From MST3K's spoof of "Hercules Unchained"--heard as Roman medic soldiers carry off an unconscious Greek Hercules on a 1950's Army green canvas stretcher: "Hi, we're IX-I-I. Did somebody dial IX-I-I?"

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Last edited by Jae Onasi; 06-12-2007 at 10:26 AM.
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