2,146 reputation
616
bio website viktor-haag.livejournal.com
location Ontario, Canada
age 48
visits member for 4 years, 3 months
seen Jul 21 at 21:12

sw design/description. aikido. boardgames. coffee. family.


Feb
20
comment Non-heroic Post-apocalyptic systems
That said, my experience with AW is pretty limited; my assertions are only from my impressions from reading the rulebook and that very limited play: all I mean to point out is that "movie logic" does not automatically NOT mean "gritty". There are lots and lots and lots of gritty movies. Especially in the post-apoc genre.
Feb
20
comment Non-heroic Post-apocalyptic systems
I don't agree that you should think of AW in those terms. An unwounded AW PC could take a shotgun blast to the face, sure. They can also die horribly. The point is that the action doesn't de-facto have mechanical consequences, it has narrative consequences, and that doesn't discount AW from being used for non-heroic-style play. What it means is that is that the gaming group needs to get on the same page with respect to genre expectations. Know the story you're telling.
Oct
1
comment Edge mechanic of Numenera
It might help to also call out that you can only use Edge for a single stat once per action, so if you divide up your Effort stat (to reduce attack difficulty, and increase damage), you can only apply Edge to one of those applications. Keep in mind, as well, that the amount of Edge you can apply to an action is bounded by your Effort levels: if you can only get two levels of Effort on an action, then having an Edge of 6 or more is not useful.
Feb
22
comment Converting a 3.5e Campaign (Shackled City) to a 4e Campaign
Which is all a roundabout way of saying, when approaching monster "conversion", use three operative principles: look for theme and story, choose something that's close from the 4e canon, and tailor appropriate to the PC's level in 4e -- don't attempt to do careful power-level balancing in your conversions. It just doesn't matter.
Feb
22
comment Converting a 3.5e Campaign (Shackled City) to a 4e Campaign
Paizo tends to be a bit more adventuresome with novel Monsters in places than most. But I stuck this firmly into the "Don't sweat the details" category. Amongst all the 4e Monster Manuals there is plenty of choice: choose the closest match and build encounters that make sense for the challenge you want to throw at the PCs. I did not bother at all to directly convert monsters: in some cases, I built my own, but I nearly always started with a close match and customized them a bit, rather than attempt a pure conversion.
Jan
18
comment Efficient / flexible terrain - Creating a clear hex grid
@user1637 I really am not sure what type of plex it is. The total cost was somewhere around $35.00 CDN.
Jul
20
comment What are the differences and similarities between Pathfinder and Fantasy Craft?
My understanding is that FantasyCraft is more than just SpyCraft with Orcs. It's more along the lines of "we're doing for the fantasy genres what SpyCraft did for the espionage genre, and we're thoroughly updating the underlying mechanics as a result of everything we've already learned, doing SpyCraft".
Jun
22
comment Efficient / flexible terrain - Creating a clear hex grid
@Kromey Papercraft terrain is a nice idea; but it's storage-demanding which is why I don't use it -- all the things I use are essentially flat, so that I can store them with minimal fuss. 8)
Jun
22
comment Efficient / flexible terrain - Creating a clear hex grid
@user1637 Very well in the short term. I've been using the system for years, without cleaning with alcohol or anything, just a paper towel to erase, and I've only maybe got the very faintest of discoloration. Like white boards, don't let it sit too long is key (i.e. not for several hours, certainly not overnight).
Jun
16
comment System for Setting: Joe Abercrombie's The First Law
I think Burning Wheel (or Riddle Of Steel, maybe, but it's out of print) is an excellent choice. I would strongly advise you to be aware that Luke Crane (author of BW) is in the process of publishing and releasing a revised (final?) edition of the game this summer (called Burning Wheel Gold). I suspect you'd be well advised to wait for that edition of the game, as it's liable to be as improved as the "Revised" edition was over "Classic". Pre-orders for the game will start at the end of June 2011, and Luke will be selling the game at GenCon 2011. Paizo is also taking orders for it now.
Jun
16
comment System for Setting: Joe Abercrombie's The First Law
System Does Matter, yes, but that phrase typically indicates that the game itself mechanically reinforces the game's theme. In this respect, it's hard to apply it to "I want to do this book or TV show, what system do I use?" The right answer there is probably figure out what the books are about, ask yourself if a game can be about the same thing, and then ask if there's a game already that's about that thing. Burning Wheel is a game about characters being heroes despite the odds, and most especially themselves. To me that sounds like a great fit.
May
13
comment Co-operative story-telling mechanics
@aramis You can thank me listening faithfully to "Sons of Kryos" and "The Durham Three" for encouraging me to think about fudging and improv technique a lot. Sadly, neither podcast is still going, but it's possible their historical archive is still available, and they're generally well worth listening to.
May
4
comment Do Pathfinder elves sleep instead of trance?
Yes. You can choose what you like for your campaign. The magic rules descriptions of how to prepare spells for arcane and divine casters seem written specifically to side-step the issue completely. It doesn't seem to really matter, mechanically speaking, whether Elves sleep or not with respect to spell-casting. Make a call for your world, and be consistent is all that matters, I suspect.
Apr
15
comment What are class skills in Pathfinder?
The story aspect implication of "class skills" are: these are the skills that your class background indicates you have an aptitude towards using. As a member of that heroic class, they're part of your schtick. Therefore, when you put ranks in those skills (you have spent time practicing that skill), your natural role in the ongoing story gives you a bump. As this is a flat plus, the bump pays off much more in the early stage of your character's career than it does later.
Apr
6
comment Are there any tools for creating a campaign from scratch?
The only disadvantage to Evernote is that it's a cloud-hosted app. This is also an advantage. Since you'd like to link to DDI while you're using it, that might not be such a disadvantage for you. For locally hosted tools, you might want to look at similar recordkeeping/notebooking desktop apps. I can personally recommend Scrivener (writing tool) and DevonThink (info database tool) for collecting bits and pieces of various sorts (written, images, links) and gluing them all together, but they're more Mac-centric; others may have PC- or Linux-based recommendations.
Mar
18
comment RPG system based on Diablo?
I agree that the powers aren't precisely treed like Diablo -- however, they are treed in two respects: they're treed by level in that most powers are not selectable until you meet the level requirements; they're also subtly treed by sometimes having harmonic effects (i.e. one power lets you do 'x', and then another power works more effectively against targets that have had 'x' done to them).
Mar
18
comment RPG system based on Diablo?
@CRoss I dispute your "not enough loot" claim. You can very easily simulate the "loot falling from every other enemy" phenomenon by dividing up the treasure packages into sub-units and assigning them to all the monsters in every single encounter. OTOH, you get 10 treasure packages per level, and 10-14 encounters per level, so that's already easily "every other encounter".
Feb
22
comment How does HERO system differ from other systems?
The point about phased ordering within a turn is a very good one, as it certainly adds flavour to the game during play. It also tends to "band" the game along genre lines: the game works out far better when all the characters involved in an encounter have roughly similar Speed (SPD) values, especially with respect to slow player characters trying to function in an encounter where all the others have higher SPDs.
Feb
7
comment When using the polymorph spell is the new shape always centred on the targets old shape?
I agree -- there are issues of reach as well as movement that get brought into play when you don't grow/shrink around the centre of a creature's current size. I'd rule that growth/shrinking can only occur around a creature's centre square.
Jan
26
comment Can a character take actions after his animal companion charges?
I agree with your assessment, but does it fully address the question? Yes, after the Wolf companion has charged it cannot take further actions. However, the Sentinel controlling the Wolf spends a standard action to command the Wolf to charge, and then may of course take a movement or free action. The Sentinel's standard action is not charging, it is commanding. I think the OP was asking whether the Sentinel had any tempo left after the Wolf charged, and I think the Sentinel does (but the Wolf itself does not).