DMed my second game of DnD yesterday.

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User Info: Lightning Bolt

Lightning Bolt
1 month ago#251
ParanoidObsessive posted...
Materials are a separate system which, as-written, can be replaced by a focus which is analogous to a holy symbol.

I'm aware. I don't feel much need to keep track of the details. Inventory management is an unfun thing so I just use the bag as a holy symbol mechanically.
One day dude, I'm just gonna get off the bus, and I'm gonna run in the woods and never come back, and when I come back I'm gonna be the knife master!
-The Rev

User Info: I_Abibde

I_Abibde
1 month ago#252
Bump-ing this because I was eyeballing Castles & Crusades rulebooks at the gaming store, only to be told that C&C does not have proper new "editions", only reprints that change up the cover artwork and tweak rules very slightly, remove spelling errors, etc. I guess that makes sense.
-- I Abibde / Samuraiter
Laughing at Game FAQs since 2002.
To be fair, once you manage to "perfect" a system, updates and new revised editions are honestly kind of a negative anyway. Especially if you're trying to "fix" something that isn't broken (see also, the New World of Darkness, a lot of people's opinions of 4e D&D, etc).

That being said, I have no real opinion on the quality of C&C because I've never played it. But having nearly 20 years of products being perfectly compatible with the rule set you buy today is a nice plus (as opposed to people constantly having to update or convert older D&D books or adventures to modern rules, because you're dealing with a half-dozen different conflicting systems), especially when it means your players won't immediately devolve into edition wars before a game, arguing over which version they'd prefer to play.

The real motivation behind most reworks and updates of systems isn't to make a better version of the system anyway, as much as it is to sell all new copies of the same old books to your older hardcore audience. Once a player owns the core rulebooks, they're no longer a source of income for you unless you keep putting out dozens (or hundreds) of splatbooks, "expanded/advanced systems", and "rules clarification" type books. But doing so tends to overcomplicate the game to the point where new players start being discouraged from playing, at which point you pare it all back, release a new edition, and start the entire cycle over again.

In D&D's case, the only real reason they came out with AD&D and 2e was to screw Gary Gygax out of money, and the reason they came out with 3e was because 2e had grown into a bloated confusing mess (and to push the d20 idea, in an attempt to grab control of the marketplace and public awareness back from White Wolf). 4e in turn was at least partly due to the fact that 3e and 3.5 had similarly grown bloated (especially once you factored in third party support books), but also as an attempt to claw at least a few new players out of the MMO market.

5e seems to be aiming at trying to maintain a balance between being simple enough to appeal to new players while referencing enough older material to appeal to oldschool gamers, and has been doing a good job of avoiding bloat, but WotC will almost certainly come out with a 6e version of the game eventually, because you can only drip-feed out so many setting books and adventure scenarios before people stop buying new books.

"Wall of Text'D!" --- oldskoolplayr76
"POwned again." --- blight family

User Info: Lightning Bolt

Lightning Bolt
1 month ago#254
ParanoidObsessive posted...
but WotC will almost certainly come out with a 6e version of the game

I hope so. Maybe they'll try something new, which is always a plus.
One day dude, I'm just gonna get off the bus, and I'm gonna run in the woods and never come back, and when I come back I'm gonna be the knife master!
-The Rev
(edited 1 month ago)
Lightning Bolt posted...
I hope so. Maybe they'll try something new, which is always a plus.

As I've said many, many times (usually in regards to politics, at least on this board), "new" isn't ALWAYS a plus. "Innovation" isn't always a net positive. And change solely for the sake of change can easily be a catastrophic negative.

Or to put it another way, "If it ain't broke, don't fix it. And if it IS broke, make sure you know what the f*** you're doing before you try to fix it."

If anything, at least 80% of Nintendo's peripheral history is a pretty clear example of coming up with new ideas backfiring more often than not. And if, say, they'd gone out of their way to do things like canceling support for the Game Boy to push the Virtual Boy, they wouldn't still be in business right now. For every Wii, they've had a Wii-U.

"Wall of Text'D!" --- oldskoolplayr76
"POwned again." --- blight family
(edited 1 month ago)

User Info: Lightning Bolt

Lightning Bolt
1 month ago#256
ParanoidObsessive posted...
As I've said many, many times (usually in regards to politics, at least on this board), "new" isn't ALWAYS a plus. "Innovation" isn't always a net positive. And change solely for the sake of change can easily be a catastrophic negative.

Depends on what you want. I want new ideas to play with and innovations to add to my repertoire, but I don't exceptionally care about the creators staying in business. New obviously wouldn't always be a plus to them, and I can respect that, but I still think it's a plus to me.

And yeah, new isn't always good in politics, just "art", if you'll let me get all pretentious for a second.
One day dude, I'm just gonna get off the bus, and I'm gonna run in the woods and never come back, and when I come back I'm gonna be the knife master!
-The Rev
(edited 1 month ago)
Lightning Bolt posted...
Depends on what you want. I want new ideas to play with and innovations to add to my repertoire, but I don't exceptionally care about the creators staying in business. New obviously wouldn't always be a plus to them, and I can respect that, but I still think it's a plus to me.

It's less of an issue when you're talking about RPGs, per se (mainly because, again, the average player can buy a couple of core rulebooks and spend the next 50+ years playing that same system without ever buying another book again, so you don't NEED a company to continue succeeding), but it's still a major problem on some level.

To wit, the moment 5e became D&D's "mainstream success" edition - which has also become the cornerstone to most popular streams or online games - it became the entry-point for most new gamers, and the standard by which they're going to continue to judge the system for the rest of their lives. While some rare few may eventually look back to previous editions and decide they like 4e or 3e or 3.5e or Pathfinder or even BECMI better, the vast majority never will.

And if you're a fan of an older edition, and dislike the "innovations" of newer systems (like, for instance, the mass dislike for 4e that many older gamers felt due to the perception that it radically altered most of the core elements and feel of the game), you can easily be "cut off" from new players, as your favored edition slowly withers and dies. Someone who loves AD&D 2e is going to have a much harder time finding players for their games than someone who wants to run a 5e game. In that sense, constant "innovation" as a core ideal (as opposed to simply releasing optional alternate rules or alternate systems/settings) can absolutely become a detriment in and of itself, even before you consider the value of individual innovations.

New ideas aren't in and of themselves automatically GOOD ideas. And a proliferation of bad ideas (or even just a moderate accumulation of bad ideas in ways that are extremely significant) can easily render a system unplayable, or at least unpleasant to people who prefer playing in a previously established way. Or at the very least, make it less worthwhile than other alternatives, rendering it a mostly shunned/ignored edition/system.

In that sense, it's not an issue of whether or not the business remains in business, it's an issue of whether or not you can even continue to play the game.

If anything, the desire for a business to continue existing helps FUEL innovation for the sake of innovation. Innovation solely for the sake of "art", or function, or quality, can often be detrimental to continued business. Because you need to keep churning out new content (even if it isn't really necessary, or you weren't even remotely inspired to produce something better than what you already had) in order to keep harvesting dollars.

Obviously, this isn't really much of an issue if you're playing a mostly homebrewed patchwork system and have enough players to support such a game long-term, but people like that rarely need new "official release" systems to provide new ideas anyway - there are literally hundreds (if not thousands) of competing systems already out in the world, and people willing to patch in ideas from multiple editions are usually just as likely (if not more so) to just homebrew their own system entirely from scratch anyway (and potentially eventually publish it).

"Wall of Text'D!" --- oldskoolplayr76
"POwned again." --- blight family
Lightning Bolt posted...
And yeah, new isn't always good in politics, just "art", if you'll let me get all pretentious for a second.

New things can just as easily be terrible in "art" as well, though.

And that's not even getting into a long, philosophical discussion about what "art" is in the first place, and if we even really HAVE "art" in the modern era when most artistic endeavor is powered more by financial gain or for entertainment purposes, which have their own aesthetic requirements.

"Wall of Text'D!" --- oldskoolplayr76
"POwned again." --- blight family

User Info: Lightning Bolt

Lightning Bolt
1 month ago#259
ParanoidObsessive posted...
this isn't really much of an issue if you're playing a mostly homebrewed patchwork system and have enough players to support such a game long-term

Yeah I was gonna say. I run Pathfinder with a list of custom rules and 3rd party replacement content (Vancian casting is so badly executed) in a custom setting. And I still have no freaking idea how to make crafting not suck!
I don't buy a ton of new games in general, and I know the market oughtn't cater to me. I just always like it when games coming out are interesting rather than "reliable".

5e gives me nothing that I couldn't do myself with a big red marker and a 3.5e book, for instance. Cutting out complexity could have been an overall improvement worth respecting, but they took it way too far for my tastes.

ParanoidObsessive posted...
New things can just as easily be terrible in "art" as well, though.

You can still learn from them? But yeah, missteps are sort of the price of entry. If you try something new you might fail. Unfortunate.

ParanoidObsessive posted...
And that's not even getting into a long, philosophical discussion about what "art" is in the first place, and if we even really HAVE "art" in the modern era when most artistic endeavor is powered more by financial gain or for entertainment purposes, which have their own aesthetic requirements.

Sturgeon's Law explains that one. Movies and games and such can be art, really any medium can, but 90% of it is crap.
In its basest form, art is something valuable for its emotional impact. We tend to not use the word "art" on the 90% that's crap, but I think it still technically applies to entertainment.
The plus side of such a wide definition being that it feels more consistent, and it lets me say I'm an artist just for running a game where we make pretend we're elves. :>
One day dude, I'm just gonna get off the bus, and I'm gonna run in the woods and never come back, and when I come back I'm gonna be the knife master!
-The Rev
(edited 1 month ago)

User Info: I_Abibde

I_Abibde
1 month ago#260
ParanoidObsessive posted...
That being said, I have no real opinion on the quality of C&C because I've never played it.


In response to your post as a whole: The C&C devs seem to make the bulk of their money from selling modules, which makes sense if you consider the 1st Edition roots of the game. Old school dungeon crawling and adventuring definitely still have their audience (... hence another game called Dungeon Crawl Classics). I do not think I have seen any C&C splatbooks, but there exists a ton of modules.
-- I Abibde / Samuraiter
Laughing at Game FAQs since 2002.
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