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Akiris

Let's chat about dice and stats

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Hello all. Did you miss me?

No?

Ah... Well points for honesty.

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For those that don't check the patch notes (myself included until recently) MP has been dropped from destruction of a building to destruction of a room. I like this. Without a cap, my feeling is that combat characters get into an arms race mentality. Where one needs a certain amount of power just to stay relevant. Not fun. It's indirectly allowing other people to decide how you play your character.

That's why I feel justfied in claiming that the lowered MP will actually increase build diversity.  If the massive AoE attacks are instead capped at large AoE attacks that can't level the building or whatever you're using as cover. Then many more character types can do more than get one shot.

I'd suggest not being a metamancer that only throws room sized fireballs. On the other hand I'm certain one of you will and I'd love to see the MP reduced again.

We've also have multiple systems floating around. T1 in many of it's forms has the upside of accommodating most characters as is. It's a bit of a variable, but the fact that this is largely running on an honor system is a possible downside.

On the other hand we have the pure dice roll systems. Where the dice decide if you succeed or fail, end of story, write it out. This like T1 can also accommodate most characters. As a variable downside, this also makes what would be considered troll builds even in T1 viable in pure dice roll systems. Because success and failure are dependant on the roll of the dice. Then written out.

While I can say I like the idea of systems with stats and rolls... I have to admit that they would be difficult to implement. Levels. As stated above, I like that the MP got lowered. Ways for characters to get far stronger than others might just make people disinclined to join if they didn't get in at the gate. Additionally, some rule sets greatly exceed what some are willing to read. I can guarantee there will be at least one person that reacts without reading this post. Not to mention some of these systems cannot accommodate characters like the former two. To say stating things up so the homebrew would fit into the system isn't an extensive project, would be a lie.

But would it be worth it?

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So what do you guys think about the new MP and all the dice roll projects that are in progress. Rolls seem to be getting popular. What will it mean for the future of Valucre roleplay?

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Am interested to see how this topic of discussion plays out! Just as a clarifying note the MP ceiling has been dropped only in Terrenus due to the story stuff going on there and has not been changed as it applies universally (though if the board leaders all agreed to the cap I wouldn't mind at all changing it site wide)

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I can't say that I enjoy any form of competitive writing, so take my opinion with a shaker's worth of salt.

 

I wanted to bring a perspective of someone who enjoys the story driven, collaborative writing side of the site. For me, everything should be about writing a good story. I tend to find myself understating the abilities of my character for most of what I write, until it comes to a point where I am writing a post and I say to myself, "Wow! It would be really cool if my character did so and so". I've never considered the "destruction of a building" cap to be a hard cap, I've always thought of it as a soft cap. If there's a good reason for me to destroy something larger than a building, that would lead to me writing a good story? I'll break that rule in a heartbeat.

It's also possible that I temper and restrict myself to prevent such an egregious breach of the "Mary Sue Syndrome". I've never enjoyed a character that could just blow up your house and kill everyone inside with little to no effort. Where's the challenge? The conflict? The hook that makes someone want to read your writing? I want people to read my work and enjoy it, and I can confidently say that when you are writing a story that involves 'combat' or 'fighting' if you don't have any sort of challenge or conflict then it gets stale and boring to read. I've read a whole lot of books on Kindle Unlimited that are written by sub-par authors where each "challenge" the characters come up against are a joke, and it sucks.

The only reason that I could think of needing a character that could blow up a building would be someone who needs to go fight an army totally alone, but this is a collaborative forum right? What's the point in fighting an army alone? To show off? To look cool? More often than not when I read something like that I just roll my eyes and move on to something different.

Losing is fun.

A statement that some might disagree with, but I can tell you that losing is in fact fun, in its own way. A good example thread of this is In the Crossfire (shameless plug), we most assuredly didn't win in that scenario. In fact, it was the culmination of over a hundred thousand words, ten or more pages, and nearly three years (real life years) of planning, work, and dedication. And we lost. But I had an absolute blast doing it, and I don't regret it. I don't think a power was used that would have done more than destroy more than a wardrobe. This led to a lot of really interesting and neat moments to write through.

To sum it all up, I don't think it's necessarily a bad thing to institute a system that restricts the power cap to just one room. I think it might even help in the long run, but in the face of an interesting story it kind of falls by the wayside I think.

Hopefully I didn't ramble too much, I have a nasty habit of doing that.

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I think when it comes to combat and people's growing want for realism in their stories, dice rolls is possibly the best way to go. You can include things like stats and modifiers to shift around the balance, but overall its that bit of realism that you just can't find in standard T1 fights. The honor system gets skirted around nearly all the time, its just how people are wired. Dice force people to be honest, and weeds out the uber competitive from ruining the experience for everyone.

I'm glad that people want more dice roll systems. If it became standard, people would either go by the old way, roll or just collaborate and make a better story. Old T1 may have worked in the past, but now it just feels like one of those things that needs to adapt to survive. 

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The lowered power ceiling in Terrenus is an improvement. 

Levels and stats wouldn't be that difficult to implement. System(s) should be lightweight to remain accessible to as many people as possible; I'm thinking about a page long, since it's doubtful anyone comes here wanting to read a 350 pg Player's Handbook to write a quickie. The real trick is meaningful progression and keeping players interested and committed in creating or joining threads that have been gamified. 

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Hmmm... I know that Risus has a 6 page pdf. It's a D6 system.

Roughly page one and two have character generation info and three and four have game mechanics. (75% of page two is a skimmable example box.)

Page 5 contains 3 advanced options.

Page 6 is about adding other dice types in addition to the D6.

Link to PDF: http://connect.ala.org/files/Risus15.pdf

Not quite as short as one page, but it does have character advancement mechanics and this should be able to cover most existing characters.

Note: This would need a way to get multiple D6 rolls at once. It is doable with the current dice-roll thread, but ex. posting four times to get the result of 4 six sided dice might grate on people.

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