Author Topic: New question pulled out of thread  (Read 10629 times)

Offline X-Codes

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Re: New question pulled out of thread
« Reply #20 on: December 17, 2011, 04:17:11 PM »
I haven't taught any of those games, nor World of Darkness or Shadowrun. Are you really going down the road of, "if you haven't taught any of my games, then you haven't taught anyone anything?" Because that will win you lots of approval, I assure you. /sarcasm
Grow up.  While you're at it, look up the game "Danger Patrol."  Now, compare that game to 3.5e.  The two would, obviously, be dramatically different in terms of difficulty to teach to a new player.  So yeah, the games that you've taught to people matters.

Seriously.  I'm getting sick of people saying "Well, Josh, I don't have the experience that you claim to have in these matters, but I still say you're wrong because I've done something kinda similar on an order of magnitude significantly smaller than what you've done."  I reiterate, Josh is an asshole.  He shouldn't be, but he is.  The same goes for you people.  You're being assholes, and you really shouldn't be.

Offline Agita

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Re: New question pulled out of thread
« Reply #21 on: December 17, 2011, 06:15:56 PM »

Someone plays D&D a lot? I would argue that they would have little difficulty picking up any tabletop role-playing game.

I think this is where our opinions and personal experience diverge.

I have taught dozens of people dozens of different new rpg's and nothing could be further from the truth.  It is harder to teach a DnD player than someone who knows nothing or someone who only plays boardgames.

Much harder.  They expect things tor work like DnD and then they don't.
This is correct, but it should start going smoother after the first or second game that is not D&D. I've picked up a lot of games over the last two years or so, including Mutants & Masterminds (2e and 3e), World of Darkness (plus a number of its sub-systems), DFRPG, Exalted (and Scion), and a whole bunch of Indie games. Picking up new ones (including catching on to how to min/max with them) got a lot smoother and faster after my group roped me into trying Changeling. My learning process tends to consist of me just reading the books and tossing questions at a knowledgeable player rather than being taught, though.
Still, generalizing from my personal experience, if you want to teach a dedicated D&D player other systems, I think it would be useful to start with one that uses a very different dice mechanic in order to break up conceits. The d10 system is probably the most radically different, but... it's the freaking d10 system. If I were to try to get a D&D player to branch out, I'd probably go with a FATE system, or something else that uses Fudge dice, or else one of the Indie games that use d6s. Analogous thoughts apply to players of other systems, of course - if you have a d10 player (the poor soul), try to get them to try a d20 game.
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Offline BG_Josh

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Re: New question pulled out of thread
« Reply #22 on: December 18, 2011, 02:34:52 AM »

Someone plays D&D a lot? I would argue that they would have little difficulty picking up any tabletop role-playing game.

I think this is where our opinions and personal experience diverge.

I have taught dozens of people dozens of different new rpg's and nothing could be further from the truth.  It is harder to teach a DnD player than someone who knows nothing or someone who only plays boardgames.

Much harder.  They expect things tor work like DnD and then they don't.
This is correct, but it should start going smoother after the first or second game that is not D&D. I've picked up a lot of games over the last two years or so, including Mutants & Masterminds (2e and 3e), World of Darkness (plus a number of its sub-systems), DFRPG, Exalted (and Scion), and a whole bunch of Indie games. Picking up new ones (including catching on to how to min/max with them) got a lot smoother and faster after my group roped me into trying Changeling. My learning process tends to consist of me just reading the books and tossing questions at a knowledgeable player rather than being taught, though.
Still, generalizing from my personal experience, if you want to teach a dedicated D&D player other systems, I think it would be useful to start with one that uses a very different dice mechanic in order to break up conceits. The d10 system is probably the most radically different, but... it's the freaking d10 system. If I were to try to get a D&D player to branch out, I'd probably go with a FATE system, or something else that uses Fudge dice, or else one of the Indie games that use d6s. Analogous thoughts apply to players of other systems, of course - if you have a d10 player (the poor soul), try to get them to try a d20 game.
I would point out that the games you listed are basically the same game.  They have the same GM and GMing style, and in all of them you fight stuff and make skill checks (player vs Environment). 

Games like Shock or Apocalypse World or Freemarket or Burning wheel are as different from each other as they are from DnD.

Offline Agita

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Re: New question pulled out of thread
« Reply #23 on: December 18, 2011, 07:19:57 AM »

Someone plays D&D a lot? I would argue that they would have little difficulty picking up any tabletop role-playing game.

I think this is where our opinions and personal experience diverge.

I have taught dozens of people dozens of different new rpg's and nothing could be further from the truth.  It is harder to teach a DnD player than someone who knows nothing or someone who only plays boardgames.

Much harder.  They expect things tor work like DnD and then they don't.
This is correct, but it should start going smoother after the first or second game that is not D&D. I've picked up a lot of games over the last two years or so, including Mutants & Masterminds (2e and 3e), World of Darkness (plus a number of its sub-systems), DFRPG, Exalted (and Scion), and a whole bunch of Indie games. Picking up new ones (including catching on to how to min/max with them) got a lot smoother and faster after my group roped me into trying Changeling. My learning process tends to consist of me just reading the books and tossing questions at a knowledgeable player rather than being taught, though.
Still, generalizing from my personal experience, if you want to teach a dedicated D&D player other systems, I think it would be useful to start with one that uses a very different dice mechanic in order to break up conceits. The d10 system is probably the most radically different, but... it's the freaking d10 system. If I were to try to get a D&D player to branch out, I'd probably go with a FATE system, or something else that uses Fudge dice, or else one of the Indie games that use d6s. Analogous thoughts apply to players of other systems, of course - if you have a d10 player (the poor soul), try to get them to try a d20 game.
I would point out that the games you listed are basically the same game.  They have the same GM and GMing style, and in all of them you fight stuff and make skill checks (player vs Environment). 

Games like Shock or Apocalypse World or Freemarket or Burning wheel are as different from each other as they are from DnD.
Mind elaborating? Isn't what you describe the core of any game, as in, you roll against a number to achieve something?
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Offline BG_Josh

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Re: New question pulled out of thread
« Reply #24 on: December 18, 2011, 01:51:30 PM »

Someone plays D&D a lot? I would argue that they would have little difficulty picking up any tabletop role-playing game.

I think this is where our opinions and personal experience diverge.

I have taught dozens of people dozens of different new rpg's and nothing could be further from the truth.  It is harder to teach a DnD player than someone who knows nothing or someone who only plays boardgames.

Much harder.  They expect things tor work like DnD and then they don't.
This is correct, but it should start going smoother after the first or second game that is not D&D. I've picked up a lot of games over the last two years or so, including Mutants & Masterminds (2e and 3e), World of Darkness (plus a number of its sub-systems), DFRPG, Exalted (and Scion), and a whole bunch of Indie games. Picking up new ones (including catching on to how to min/max with them) got a lot smoother and faster after my group roped me into trying Changeling. My learning process tends to consist of me just reading the books and tossing questions at a knowledgeable player rather than being taught, though.
Still, generalizing from my personal experience, if you want to teach a dedicated D&D player other systems, I think it would be useful to start with one that uses a very different dice mechanic in order to break up conceits. The d10 system is probably the most radically different, but... it's the freaking d10 system. If I were to try to get a D&D player to branch out, I'd probably go with a FATE system, or something else that uses Fudge dice, or else one of the Indie games that use d6s. Analogous thoughts apply to players of other systems, of course - if you have a d10 player (the poor soul), try to get them to try a d20 game.
I would point out that the games you listed are basically the same game.  They have the same GM and GMing style, and in all of them you fight stuff and make skill checks (player vs Environment). 

Games like Shock or Apocalypse World or Freemarket or Burning wheel are as different from each other as they are from DnD.
Mind elaborating? Isn't what you describe the core of any game, as in, you roll against a number to achieve something?

All these games work the following way (with tiny outlying exceptions)

Game: GM presents an adventure; players try to overcome a series of challenges; at the end they succeed or fail, mark experience and re set up for the next adventure.

system: large scale GM presents a challenge that has mechanics instilled by the GM's decisions (like a combat encounter). small scale GM presents a challenge and the player succeeds or fails, in both cases the GM decides the outcome.

philosopy: These games are heavily steeped in the GM using the negative techniques illusionism, hand waving, storytelling and fudgeing.

The other games work, differently.

In Shock everyone is a GM and a Player.  You decide your own challenge based on a system the group made up, the GM decides a sort of knife twisting subchallenge.  When you roll, everyone at the table rolls.

In AW the GM never rolls and the players know the flat success rates for every move they might make.

In BW the game is built around the decisions you make about your character, namely their beliefs.  And even though the game has a GM most of the system is designed to give all the power to the players.  This enhances the power of the GM because they can go at you hard.  Also by design failure is not a stop, but a complication.

And Freemarket is the game so wacky people who have mastered these other games think it is weird.  It is a game actually about transhumanity.

Offline Unbeliever

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Re: New question pulled out of thread
« Reply #25 on: December 19, 2011, 09:50:13 AM »
^ I think a lot of this is fair.  Although I stipulate my ignorance about games other than D&D and BW. 

The only thing I wanted to add (reiterate?) is that while that might be true -- and that the beliefs, etc. structure of BW, along with the way it treats "failures" is quite interesting -- it also carries with it a lot of baggage, to use a loaded term that expresses my assessment.  This is the setting, character creation, and combat rules criticisms I referred to in my earlier posts.

So, the costs of admission to that system may be high.  For some players, to whom such things are important.  Or, alternately, have not had enough positive experiences with the other aspects of the system to outweigh the bad stuff, those costs may be prohibitive.  This, I think, explains my thumbs up for Mouseguard and thumbs down for BW. 

Further, I think this makes it a bit equivocal whether Burning Wheel qualifies as a "good" games (full stop) or an "ok" or even "passable" game with some really intriguing great elements to it.  Combat, character creation, and setting are, one could reasonably argue, are things central to an RPG.

Finally, I'd say the typology implied by the above post may be pitched at such a level of abstraction to be divorced from actual experience at the table.  For example, I play D&D and M&M pretty regularly, apparently b/c I love ampersands.  According to Josh's typology, they are essentially the same game, and they do share very much in common.  But, I find my experience as player and GM of both to be radically different.  Likewise, it's hard for me to say my experience running/playing Rifts, WoD, Godlike, D&D, M&M, and Star Wars Saga Edition were all, in essence, identical.  What I'm saying is that typology may be an unhelpful one, in the way that saying that Basketball and (American) Football are essentially the same game b/c they both involve balls, scoring, referees, and fouls. 

Offline BG_Josh

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Re: New question pulled out of thread
« Reply #26 on: December 19, 2011, 11:15:24 AM »
Unbeliver,

You use the term "baggage" and I think that is exactaly correct.  The problem that people have coming from sayDnD to Burning wheel is a kind of baggage.  (I argue that the baggage is on the side of the other game)  bw works in a particular way.  It does not run like a modified version of DnD. 

And yes bw character design is difficult, if you have decided your destination.  But unlike DnD you don't need to do that to start.

As for similar play experiences, play a radically different game and then talk to me again.

Offline Unbeliever

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Re: New question pulled out of thread
« Reply #27 on: December 19, 2011, 12:14:27 PM »
Unbeliver,

You use the term "baggage" and I think that is exactaly correct.  The problem that people have coming from sayDnD to Burning wheel is a kind of baggage.  (I argue that the baggage is on the side of the other game)  bw works in a particular way.  It does not run like a modified version of DnD. 
You continue to try and defend a position but don't really offer evidence in its defense.  I have made the following contentions:  Burning Wheel has a clunky combat system (I'd actually go further to say that it borders on the unplayable) and a character creation system that smuggles in really strong presumptions about the game world. 

These, I think, are reasonable, well-thought out, and hardly unique criticisms.  What you could say is that either:  (a) I'm wrong in my estimation for such and such reasons, or (b) that the costs of admission are worth the awesomeness that is Burning Wheel. 

But, instead your response is, roughly, as follows:  (c) category error on Unbeliever's part, he thinks that BW should run like D&D, and it doesn't, and so his evaluations are mistaken. 

This is both untrue and uncharitable.  And, based on absolutely nothing I've written, except the shocking revelation that I play D&D. 

I expect BW to do what it says on the tin:  a fantasy game with meaningful rules for conflicts, some of which will occasionally involve stabbing.  Any game that includes 100+ rules for combat (I checked) can be expected to be judged, to some degree, on the merits of those rules.  And, stabbing people, jousting, and so on is an archetypal feature of fantasy stories. 

As for similar play experiences, play a radically different game and then talk to me again.
This is both arrogant and prickish.  I don't know if that's your intention, and I try to make allowances for written media.  But, this sort of claimed authoritative high-horsing seems to be a theme in your posts. 

This is an argument by authority, and I am willing to guess you know what that is and why it's bad.  Also, by context and by admission I've, y'know, played both BW and Mouseguard.  So, ummm ... yeah ...

Offline BG_Josh

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Re: New question pulled out of thread
« Reply #28 on: December 19, 2011, 02:31:41 PM »
Burning wheel does not have a "combat system" so that alone reperesents a paridigm shift. 

One subsystem called Fight is somewhat complex to encompass but is less complex than any DnD system.  To learn fight, you play it.

How is the game without fight?


Offline Unbeliever

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Re: New question pulled out of thread
« Reply #29 on: December 19, 2011, 04:37:33 PM »
Burning wheel does not have a "combat system" so that alone reperesents a paridigm shift. 
sigh ...  This strikes me as yet another instance where you will have some idiosyncratic usage of a common term.  The Burning Wheel rulebook I have has many many pages devoted to adjudicating combats, and further pages devoted to the implements of such combats (weapons and armor) as well as how entities recover from the rigors of such encounters.  This is a set of rules adjudicating combat, or a combat system, for short.  And, it is a significant part of the game, both in pages and in terms of the genre the game is supposed to emulate. 

One subsystem called Fight is somewhat complex to encompass but is less complex than any DnD system.  To learn fight, you play it.

How is the game without fight?
The complaint wasn't complexity, but "clunkiness."  Which I think is a combination of opacity, imbalance, as well as complexity.  In particular, it was hard to parse the rhyme or reason or internal logic between the modifiers attendant to all the various maneuvers.

I think I described my general feelings on the system above.  Setting aside combat for a minute, I found its character creation system very problematic.  There were balance issues, but I also did not like how firmly it tied you to a very particular image of the setting, one that was never spelled out anywhere.  Indeed, the opposite is stated in the beginning of the Character Burner, if memory serves. 

Besides that, my only other complaint is that there's a lot going on in the Artha, et al. system.  Perhaps too much in the way that all the various things fit together.  Although that might just be a newb problem or one of presentation. 

To reiterate:  I was disappointed by BW.  I purchased it on the recommendation of people, including the Brilliant Gameologist podcast.  And, I think there's a lot of potential for a game that is truly character-driven and deeply-satisfying.  But, I feel the game is hamstrung by particular, and on my read surprising, design choices that lead to restrictive and baroque mechanics.  These, I feel, get in the way of the more interesting and innovative features presented in the game.

This doesn't mean it's not a good game.  But, it does mean that it has issues.  Especially since the elements that I find problematic are reasonably important ones to an RPG.  But, I play and really enjoy lots of games that have issues, and even great games tend to have them (to take an example from another medium, the Witcher 2 is a great action RPG, but it has serious issues). 

Part of me would love to find a group of Burning Wheel players and still try it out and experience it at its best, though I don't have the time nowadays. 

Offline BG_Josh

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Re: New question pulled out of thread
« Reply #30 on: December 20, 2011, 01:08:57 AM »
So, here's the deal Unbeliever. 

BW works like a negotiation. 

Player: I want this
GM: How shall we do that? OR Here is a way to do that
Player: This Way OR I accept/reject that way
GM: what happens if you make it?
Player: This.  What happens if I fail?
GM: This. Are we agreed to terms and mechanics?
Player: Yes/No/ go back to "I want this"
Player Rolls, Play progresses

Now it is never that formal but that is the overview.  Players always are aware of all the mechanics, there are no surprises in that regard.

So to use this for combat the group decides how to apply it.  Skill test, extended test, ranged, fight etc.  So combat can be a kind of skill test or you can use a subsystem.  But in the end you negotiate what you would like to use. 

It's a very different game.

PS:  By design, there is no specific "balance" between players.  That's why you don't see it
PPS: by design character generation is tied to setting, and adventure is tied to character design. 

Offline Agita

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Re: New question pulled out of thread
« Reply #31 on: December 20, 2011, 06:22:55 AM »
So the only difference is that in BW, the DM pitches in on how to solve situations and players are aware of all the consequences of their actions?
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Offline BG_Josh

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Re: New question pulled out of thread
« Reply #32 on: December 20, 2011, 09:45:07 AM »
So the only difference is that in BW, the DM pitches in on how to solve situations and players are aware of all the consequences of their actions?

No.  The gm does not pitch in.  There are many ways of executing a goal.  All the players know these ways.  The player and the gm agree on what the final numbers are.  The job of the gm is to set obstacles and complications as well as push the situation.

Again, it is so different from DnD you really need to experience it.

Offline Unbeliever

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Re: New question pulled out of thread
« Reply #33 on: December 20, 2011, 10:05:19 AM »
I had a longer post, but I don't think I'm going to bother posting it. 

I actually have read BW and played it a bit.  Suffice to say that my feelings on the game differ greatly from Josh's.  And, I think his brief explanations of the system both fly in the face of the book and are tinged by the way he (and maybe lots of people for all I know) run and play the game.  So, are essentially large house rules laid on top of the system.  I also don't think they answer any of the criticisms of the game I've presented.  If anyone's curious on my take I guess they can PM me or something. 

Offline BG_Josh

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Re: New question pulled out of thread
« Reply #34 on: December 20, 2011, 10:36:55 AM »
I had a longer post, but I don't think I'm going to bother posting it. 

I actually have read BW and played it a bit.  Suffice to say that my feelings on the game differ greatly from Josh's.  And, I think his brief explanations of the system both fly in the face of the book and are tinged by the way he (and maybe lots of people for all I know) run and play the game.  So, are essentially large house rules laid on top of the system.  I also don't think they answer any of the criticisms of the game I've presented.  If anyone's curious on my take I guess they can PM me or something.

That's what I expected.  The way I indicate is the way to play the game. So you like many people have been playing your own way.  That may be why you don't like it.  But just as likely, you don't like it.

Offline veekie

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Re: New question pulled out of thread
« Reply #35 on: December 20, 2011, 10:50:29 AM »
If anyone's curious on my take I guess they can PM me or something. 
Why not start a thread in Kitchen Sink for BW specific discussions and issues? Hopefully with an introduction(basic resolution mechanics, basic chargen, etc) to the system in the OP to spark discussion.
I'd like to see the basis for gap between the people who see it as the Second Coming(exaggerated), the people who don't see anything special over other RPGs and the people who can't make it through the rulebook to begin with.
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