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Jun. 29th, 2009 @ 02:20 pm World's greatest 3D MMORPG
Someone should make the ultimate 3D MMORPG that includes everything. Everything.

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Nov. 14th, 2006 @ 11:44 pm How much Realism will be accepted in an RPG Combat System?
In almost all RPG systems combat, and exspecially weapon damage and PC constitution, is highly unrealistic. Those three times your character was stabbed with a sword? Just scratches. And that shotgun blast to your head was nothing but a graze. Okay, so your character got a beating, and maybe lost some HP/LP/whatever, but he can walk away from combat just fine, even though he almost died from the wounds. And in a few days he will be just fine again.

I am looking at this from the perspective of game-play: if you do not have to worry all that much about your character actually coming out with some form of permanent damage (from being crippled to being killed) you need not be scared from fights, can be brave, and get into plenty of brawls, allowing you to play out all those combat-related feats/skills you bought. And having to deal with month-long recuperation periods from that one fight that went awry can be plain annoying: after all you want to be out in full capacity again.

I personally could see some benefits in a highly realistic system, too, though: since you have to worry about your character being injured, crippled or killed in combat, you will be more inclined to try to avoid fights to the best of your ability (as i personally would assume most of us do in real life as well). I'd claim that the vast majority of storytellers ("GMs") would in general prefer that, since quite often the players willingness to become violent and just risk the fight can make it a lot harder for them. Also, i personally would be inclined to believe that if less focus was put on fights that would likely make many females far more inclined to join an RPG group, since the situations that players elsewhise often like to solve with a fight - a mob of bandits demanding money for letting the players pass over "their" road, some drunkard spewing out obscenities at one of the players romantic interest, conflict sweltering between two neighbouring groups - would preferably call for a different solution than "Kill 'em ALL!!!", like possibly diplomacy, humor, wit or other social skills to limit the fights to the unavoidable ones.

I strongly wonder whether such an approach would be accepted by the players, though. There certainly are some who actually play RPGs mainly because they want the opportunity to ram their blades down the throats of anyone cocky enough to dare incite their wrath. Slashing an opponent to ribbons can be quite fun (well, maybe not much fun in the D20 system, but some fun even there ; - P ). Eliminating the element of combat from an RPG-system entirely would strongly reduce its appeal to the vast majority of players, would seem to me - but how far do you think one can go?

I know how far you can go in the other direction (i have the GURPS supplement detailing the "Silly Combat Rules") but how much realism in a combat system would players be willing to accept in your opinion?
How lethal may combat become?
How realistic recovering periods, or the chance of a crippling or killing injury (which was rather disquietingly high during early medieval times, when a broken bone would lead to permanent damage, and sepsis had a darn high chance of getting you even after the fight was already over)?
And do you think that taking emphasis from combat through making the combat system more lethal and thus disinclining players to seek out fights but rather encourage them to search for other solutions would draw in female players?

Thank you for responding. I would greatly appreciate it if you could also leave me a note on what your opinion is based on: how many groups you played in and for how long, which different game systems you know/have experienced in use and how their different approaches to this impacted the groups, or whether you already designed your own game system that actually implemented an extremely realistic approach and got a surprising response... I look forward to the discussion. : - ]

Pax vobiscum

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Dec. 19th, 2005 @ 02:08 pm NPCed into a Corner
Hello! This is my first post to this community. I was very happy to see this type of community out there and I hope that I can contribute to the discussions.

One of the reasons I joined is because I'm having a little dilemma with the game that I am moderating. It is a Kingdom Hearts storyline based exclusively in journals, and I created an entire gaming system for it completely from scratch. I was very selective in the application process, everyone was required to submit a sample post, pass an interview and then sign an RP contract so that if any ooc conficts arose then that person could be removed easily.

The game began on December 1st and is scheduled to end sometime in January. So far, things have been going great. The members are incredible and the story is progressing at the pace that I wanted it to. The problem is, because I have an RP system in place and require a lot from my members, people were kind of scared to join. As a result, there's certain characters that I hoped would have their own muns, but are currently being NPCed since no one applied for them.

At the moment the SL is progressing fine with this handicap, but sooner or later we're going to end up in a situation where we're pretty much RPing with ourselves because of the NPCs we control. I would like to avoid this by filling in key characters with muns, but no one wants to join because they 1) The SL is short and has been going on for a while and 2) There's a lot to learn.

Now, I do train every person who comes into the SL so they are proficient in using the system, but this doesn't seem to bring comfort whatsoever to potential roleplayers. I've advertised everywhere and have come up empty. All I really need is one new person to round out this group, but no one has stepped forwards who is willing to take a major role in this RP.

So my question is, does the problem lie in my approach, my rules, or is there even a problem at all? Maybe it's the niche that my fandom is in that's limiting the amount of people I can pull in.

For anyone who's interested, here is the inclusion criteria for this storyline:

Community Information

In addition, here is the gaming system that I put into place:

Community Roleplay Guide

If anyone has any comments or advice, I would be happy to listen.
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Dec. 4th, 2005 @ 07:10 pm Dilemma
Howdy there all, I just recently joined, and I was wondering about a situation my character is in now, and a sort of "What would you do?" question.

So, Background: For any of you that have seen the anime Gunslinger Girl, my character is essentially one of them. For those of you that haven't, my character is a 12 year old girl who was cybernetically enhanced so that she would 1. live and 2. be useful to our group, "The Cause." The Cause was part of the Spanish Inquisition, the group that went out and hunted Vampires, Werewolves, Demons, etc. After the Inquisiton died, the Cause lived on, even until today. So, for a good part of the RPG, my character, Henrietta (yes, I'm uninventive, so sue me), was the brute force behind the group.

We eventually moved from Spain to America, where Henrietta met a boy named Tino that she liked. So, the fight in America then turns toward werewolves. On Halloween, Henrietta goes out trick or treating with Tino and a member of the Cause, Isabella. As we're going along, Tino gets captured. Some people in black cars pull up a minute later and tell us to get in, they're chasing the people who took Tino. So, we go, and it's a ritual sacrifice down at the docks, with Tino being the sacrifice for the werewolves. Henrietta tries to stop them, but she doesn't in time, and Tino dies. The werewolves also maul Isabella, whom Henrietta has had a good relationship with. Henrietta basically loses it, kills a bunch of werewolves, and then runs away. She ends up getting onto a ship bound for Italy, leaving the rest of the group behind.

Now, about 3 months later, the group finally comes to Italy, and Henrietta rejoins. At this point though, she has a new love interest, as well as a serious music career as a violinist. She hasn't gotten in a fight or anything there. Now, suddenly, the group is asking her to take up arms against some vampires. She's really unsure of what to do now. Does she once again embrace the gun, or does she refuse? This is something I really can't decide on, and your help would be most grateful.
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I Kill State Alchemists
Sep. 30th, 2005 @ 12:32 pm (no subject)
A few days ago it occurred to me that a lot of potentially interesting thematic elements get passed over at the game table, and don't get the kind of GM attention that they may deserve. Some types of thematic elements, like those relating to the horror and action genres, receive a lot of attention from the RPG community. Tons of articles have been written on how to incorporate elements of the horror genre into game sessions, for example. But other potentially powerful elements seem to get largely overlooked.

Lately I've been thinking about how I could experiment with alternate thematic elements, and integrate them into sessions.

The first example I can think of would have to be romance. Not stupid eroticism, wussy stuff, or goth-punk angstiness, but compelling shakespearean elements that might provide motivations, flavor, and nuances of tragedy/comedy currently unaccessible to the casual gamer. I've never seen any published material on how to incorporate love stories into role playing sessions. (Referrals always appreciated!)

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Aug. 20th, 2005 @ 12:33 pm Campaign Settings
First an introduction: I followed lottelita and theironjef, both of whom I know in real life, onto this group. 

Now my question: I've been slowly putting together a campaign world between bouts of dealing with real life.  I'm trying to better organize my thoughts about it and start to put it into some sort of finished form.  I'm not sure what I'm going to do with it, but to me that is much less important than the process of thinking it through and creating it.  Anyway, I was wondering what you guys find most important in the description of campaign settings (fluffwise) that you run (whether they're published or ones you make up)?  What parts are the most useful for you as the GM?  I know what I always look for, but I'm curious how others approach a new setting. 
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Aug. 12th, 2005 @ 01:40 am Rules Call!
Assuming the familiar attribute, skill, trait modelCollapse )how do you think the regeneration of attribute damage (a decrease in an attribute score brought about by for example overexcertion, poisoning, sickness or some form of magic) should be handled? Why? What are the benefits of your solution regarding realism, fun, efficiency and balance?

Some of the models i am familiar withCollapse )
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Aug. 10th, 2005 @ 04:10 am (no subject)
Scouring the journal of our newest active member theironjef i stumbled upon an article of him reflecting on how and why robots can be successfully integrated into roleplaying, introducing new challenges and ideas not just as heavy weapon-platforms but as complex character types that may have an entirely different worldview and character-development from normally born characters. Upon requesting permission i was allowed to repost a link to this journal - as a vivid supporter of robotic characters i can only support his opinion.
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Aug. 9th, 2005 @ 09:14 am How to Unmake a Social Monster?
One of the old chestnuts I heard when I first started gaming, and one of the few that's really stuck with me throughout the years I've played, is that regardless of what character they make, people will always end up playing themselves. I've had friends that can play nothing but surly mercenaries, shining paragons, and even one friend who can olny play underpowered world-wandering wide eyed types. And it's true, you can always see right through whatever framework they may have generated for their character, their new skin, as if it were ever-increasingly translucent, like the shades slowly being drawn back or grease slowly being rubbed onto a sheet of thin paper. Now this isn't neccessarily a problem, as people always find reasons to game, and people are drawn to familiarity, take comfort in old situations, so when a friend rolls up his 15th paladin in a row, you don't think "argh, another one," but rather "what would the party be without it's paladin?"

I do indeed play myself every time, or at least my favorite version of myself. Hyper, frenetic, a complicated rush of spur-of-the-moment decision making and razors-edge verbal riposting that tends to keep the party in good, fun, trouble as much as possible. In D&D terms, I favor dexterity and charisma and always play bards. In Exalted (my new love) terms, I favor the Night caste, Dexterity, Performance, and Lore. People are fairly used to me playing the hyperactive jokester character, and while they occasionally complain, I feel like I've got a good thing established, and I'm good at what I do.

So here's my issue. Determined to make something different and succeed at it for once, I've made an Exalted character that is absolutely nothing like me or my traditional playstyle. She's unusually quiet and still, a traditionalist instead of an innovater, would sooner dodge a situation entirely than tell a joke, and derives her greatest joys from simple magics and time spent alone with her familiar and the elementals she summons. I've played her exactly as I designed her, tough to talk to, weird to even look at or deal with, a social outcast with both societal reasons (she's from a shunned and isolated woodlands tribe) and personal reasons (she was the only child in her generation, a freak occurrence, and as such never had much childhood social development). The problem is I made her too weird. SInce she's so drastically unapproachable, she's viewed as a problem. Since she takes pleasure only in weird things and at weird times, she's viewed as psychotic. Since she's so intense and focused, she's thought of as a potential murderer (luckily, the group has an actual murderer, so that takes a little of the focus off). I'm starting to wish I had never made her or her weird personality, I get the impression the group would have been happier with another of my traditional characters, and I'm wondering if there isn't a good way to simplify what's essentially an overcomplicated mess of a character into a slightly more bare archetype without damaging previously established story.

Oh, and incidentally, Hi! I'm a new member of the group, my name shouldn't elude you for too long and I'm just happy to be here.
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Aug. 3rd, 2005 @ 01:23 am A Question of Leadership
Firstoff, i want to repeat my thanks to all who have kindly answered the questions that i posed in my last entries.
Once again, a little question i would like to pose, in line with the discussion that tomorrow_devil initiated: How exactly if at all is a leader determined in your group? Are the decisions generally made in a democratic way, with everyone discussing what should be done and following what the majority thinks is the best idea, or is there one person who tends to make the decisions and take the reigns, or do you alternate between those methods or use entirely different ways of determining the course of action, and if so, how is determined which method to use?
If there is one designated leader – how is he determined? Is that a question of whose character has the highest attributes/skills/appropiate traits in leadership/charisma/etc. or is the personality of the player more important?

A short paragraph on how leaders are determined in our group:Collapse )

If you can find the time i think it would be highly interesting to discuss the different means by which the groups tend to distribute the decision-making.
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