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  1. #11
    Senior Member ryancaveney's Avatar
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    Dec 2002
    Manassas, VA
    Quote Originally Posted by Noquar View Post
    I have been gaming off and on now for 20 years. IMO I have noticed a trend in gaming systems over the years from a focus of story telling to munchkin final fantasy style gaming, with powers and feats ect... I am an old school gamer so I like the story telling side better and still think 2nd ed was the strongest in this area. I want more story telling and less game mechanics. I cant seem to get players on this same page and struggle with power hungry players that min max the crap out of the game.
    Up to this point, I'm largely with you.

    Quote Originally Posted by Noquar View Post
    Your high level so you unleash hell at him, but this doesn't happen in real life with such certainty ........duh because you don't know what your up against or what your stats are and your attack bonus is.
    However, I fail to see how this has anything to do with your introduction. In real life, I don't unleash anything precisely because I *know* my STR is only average, I *know* my DEX is low and I *know* my to-hit roll and dodge really suck. I know, in fact, that I put essentially all my XP into Knowledge skills. =) If I were forced to play a game without a character sheet, I think I would *have* to start fights with random strangers in bars, simply because it would be the only way to find out if I were any good at fighting before drawing my sword in earnest! IRL, I have never been in a bar fight, but I have enough other data to predict how it would probably go. That's exactly what having your character sheet gives you -- a pretty good idea of your own capacities, but no data on the other guy's.

    Quote Originally Posted by Noquar View Post
    You might win, but you never know for sure. Maybe you have won most fights in the past but you still don't know your AC or your to hit bonus.
    And here I disagree totally. Yes, you never know for sure whether you're going to win, but that's only because you don't have access to the *other person's* character sheet. You do know your own AC because you know what kind of armor you bought, and if you're experienced you know roughly how good you are at dodging and hitting. You just don't know those things about him. You can calculate odds, but you can never know for sure. I don't see how taking away this information gives you anything you want.

    Quote Originally Posted by Noquar View Post
    They should only have access to as much information as you and I do in real life......none. We don't know our "game mechanics" anymore than the next guy
    Balderdash! Look at 2e for a moment. If you know how much you can bench press, you know your STR. If you know how many languages you speak, you know your minimum INT. If you can cast Magic Missile, the number of times per day you can cast it and the number of missiles which show up each time tell you your Wizard level. And so on.

    Quote Originally Posted by Noquar View Post
    This way they are not distracted by bonuses and feats but instead focus on narrative , interaction and impulse......realism.
    Realism means that the probabilities with which things happen accord with experience. As such, it is a function of the rules system, as expressed in the *interaction* between two opposing character sheets. Taking away self knowledge makes characters delusional, not realistic.

    Quote Originally Posted by Noquar View Post
    it seems no matter how hard you try, every group of players has one bad seed that abuses the rules and sucks what little realism you have developed out of the game.
    I try hard to see such people as (and would prefer to be seen myself as) beta testers who help demonstrate where the bugs in the rules are. No rules system is perfect, and in fact none can ever be -- which means they all are subject to improvement. My absolute favorite book on gaming, and possibly of all time, is Murphy's Rules. It consists of nothing but a compendium of silly rules which didn't work the way they were meant, or at least ridiculously violate reality. To me, the obvious response is not to chastise the player, it is to change the rule! In fact, IMO, the player *helped* you by finding the bug for you.

    In fact, to a great extent, that's my professional career, too. I'm a physicist, which means I am in the business of creating mathematical models of reality. They're certainly not perfect, and aren't even meant to be complete, but under the right circumstances they can be very helpful. Finding places where the model is wrong -- or even better, looks utterly foolish -- is the one and only way to improve the model over time. I see D&D in much the same way. My biggest headache comes in trying to decide what the differences are between the printed rules and the underlying physics of the real gameworld, especially as applied to magic. For example, I know the falling rules are silly because they make it way too easy to survive jumping off a building. However, I have no way to tell whether Fly really ought to be the same difficulty as Fireball, because I have no basis for comparison other than the rules; except that I *already know* the rules are *wrong*, because *all* rules are wrong -- they are the result of a vast pile of simplifying assumptions, some of which are inevitably misleading.

    Quote Originally Posted by Noquar View Post
    So I was tossing around the idea of a "know they self" loophole for players. The idea being that stats or game mechanic descriptions and relative level could be divulged after a wisdom check or specific life event that would help a character reflect on his/her self.
    As far as I am concerned, that life event is living long enough to complete character creation. =) Sure, the player has only known the character for a few minutes, but the character has lived 20+ years as himself already, and so has a pretty good idea of who he is. If you start with higher-level characters (and in D&D, especially 3e, I consider anyone under 4th level to be a rank amateur apprentice), they most certainly know how good they are if they've had a career involving combat and are still alive to continue it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Noquar View Post
    Another aspect I was toying around with is a classless system.
    This, on the other hand, I have always enthusiastically supported! However, given that a class and level is really just a shorthand for a specific package of skills, classless systems need detailed character sheets much more than D&D does. That is, at least before feats got into it, all 7th-level fighters were pretty much the same, as they all fit a very constrained archetype. Anything more detailed really needs the players to take care of all that stuff for themselves. Have you ever tried to roll up a Runequest NPC on the spur of the moment? It can take *days*...
    Last edited by ryancaveney; 01-04-2009 at 08:33 PM. Reason: typo

  2. #12
    Member Noquar's Avatar
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    Jan 2005

    thank you

    Just wanted to say thank you to everyone that contributed there opinions and advice.

    I may post the results of my next game If people want

    take care

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