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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4285 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 126 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: Can of Worms  (Read 5712 times)
Bankuei
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« Reply #15 on: April 05, 2004, 10:31:43 AM »

Hi folks,

I've found D&D to be a dysfunctional relationship.  It only works as long as you don't play by the rules as written, and its way more work than it needs to be.  Players got headaches dealing with character creation, I got headaches having to guess challenges because the challenge rating system is horribly inadequate for estimating things.

Feats, Spells, Special Abilities, etc.  It's like playing Magic except you have to keep looking up the rules for each card across half a dozen books.

D&D is like the girl you love but can't never seem to get things to work out.

Chris
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ethan_greer
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Posts: 869


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« Reply #16 on: April 05, 2004, 10:47:55 AM »

I beg to differ. D&D, 3 or 3.5, plays just fine when played exactly as written.

But you gotta want it, and you gotta work for it.
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Bankuei
Guest
« Reply #17 on: April 05, 2004, 11:00:10 AM »

Hi Ethan,

I should qualify "works" as a fun game experience for me and anyone I play with.  Granted, fun is different for everyone, but playing by the rules as written brought zero enjoyment to me, nor anyone in a group of 5 players, even with the understanding that we were going balls to the walls gamism.  

What I found particularly broken was the challenge rating system...one CR 3 challenge was a breeze for the group, the next would almost slaughter them, and that's not even with any weird magic or special powers!  The differences between AC, Attack, and Damage alone create a completely complex set of issues that would make an expert Gamist DM worthy of analyzing how fish prices in Peru affect global market economics :P

Chris
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Eric Provost
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Posts: 581


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« Reply #18 on: April 05, 2004, 11:20:07 AM »

I hate levels sooooooo much...

That is... the D&D style levels where -everything- happens at once.  You know... can't get better at Diplomacy 'till you also get better at swinging a sword.  

I hate them!  I hate them!  I hate them!  *pouts*

Know what I hate more than d20 D&D?  d20 Star Wars.  Ewwwwww....


-Eric
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Lance D. Allen
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Posts: 1962


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« Reply #19 on: April 05, 2004, 02:11:23 PM »

The positives:

D20 improved a lot of the issues I had with older versions of D&D.. Namely, how cookie cutter characters were. With feats, and skills being a little bit more prolific, My 3rd level Paladin differs from yours sufficiently to make me happy. I also like some of the alternate systems of hitpoints, such as those used by Star Wars D20.

The negatives: I still hate classes and levels. I have ever since I figured out that there was another way to do it. I think the alignment system is BS, too. Still hate hitpoints, even if they've improved their methods with them. Mind you, these problems aren't specific to the D20 version of D&D.
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~Lance Allen
Wolves Den Publishing
Eternally Incipient Publisher of Mage Blade, ReCoil and Rats in the Walls
Umberhulk
Member

Posts: 64


« Reply #20 on: April 05, 2004, 03:08:10 PM »

D&D 3.0 and 3.5 are fine games and very well designed and playtested for balance.  I used to not really like D&D all that much, but then I started playing Living Greyhawk a couple of years ago.  The people that are complaining that the encounter levels aren't balanced are wrong.  My guess is that their DM didn't know how to play the monsters / opponents to the fullest extent, because I felt that exact same way before playing LG.  Playing a lot of LG is like going to a DnD clinic; You learn about all aspects of the game from rules, tactics and character advancement paths.  

You should play knowing full well that there are classes, levels, and alignments.  A lot of people complain that these are "broken" but really they are the essence of what makes DnD.  You should also play with miniatures and a battle mat.  DnD is intended to be a minis game (plastics ones are available at $9.99 per collectible box :-)..).



Quote
Anyway, anytime RPGs are brought up in the fora, people invariably are playing D&D & act as if they've never heard of or considered anything else.


I agree with this.  There are many DnD fanatics that don't even acknowledge that there are other systems out there...
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ethan_greer
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Posts: 869


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« Reply #21 on: April 05, 2004, 03:15:11 PM »

Quote from: Bankuei
I should qualify "works" as a fun game experience for me and anyone I play with.

Figured as much. :) As I said, you've really got to want it, and so does pretty much the whole group, in order for it to work well.  At least, that's my opinion.
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Scourge108
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Posts: 78


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« Reply #22 on: April 05, 2004, 04:21:32 PM »

I have 2 things to say about d20 and D&D3.5:

1) Most of the improvements they made really were improvements, and the new D&D really is superior to earlier versions.

2) A piece of crap with a nice red ribbon on it is still a piece of crap.

But I'm probably too judgemental.
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Greg Jensen
coxcomb
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Posts: 202


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« Reply #23 on: April 05, 2004, 04:34:09 PM »

Quote from: Scourge108
2) A piece of crap with a nice red ribbon on it is still a piece of crap.


Or, as an old friend of mine once told me: You can't polish a turd.

I've been thinking about this thread, and I think I put my finger on why I played as many D20 games as I did. When it first came out, it had so many improvements over previous versions that it tricked me into thinking that it didn't suck. But after a few plays, the chrome wore off and the same old problems were there.
The biggest one is rules inflation. When you run a game from behind a big stack of books because you need them all to clarify the various feats, abilities, skills, and options, you have a problem.
I know it is the choice of the indiviudal as to how many options to allow, but the basic D&D books left so many holes open to fill, that it's hard to avoid.
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Jay Loomis
Coxcomb Games
Check out my http://bigd12.blogspot.com">blog.
orbsmatt
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Posts: 86


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« Reply #24 on: April 06, 2004, 07:39:29 AM »

Don't know don't care.  I prefer other systems.  I've never really been able to get into the d20 systems.
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Matthew Glanfield
http://www.randomrpg.com" target="_blank">Random RPG Idea Generator - The GMs source for random campaign ideas
Sean
Guest
« Reply #25 on: April 06, 2004, 09:33:54 AM »

I don't agree that the new version is superior, but it really, really depends on what you want to do with it.

If you want to do dungeon crawls, though, which on some views is what D&D is about, the new version is by no means superior in all respects. The combat system is grainier and better defined, which can make for reasonably entertaining miniatures skirmishes. However, this is offset by the addition of a clunky skill system, which is not relevant to dungeon crawling at all, and the fact that monsters now have stats, skills, and feats, meaning that the amount of work necessary to design a dungeon for yourself has increased astronomically.

If you're playing more of a 'generic fantasy adventuring game', the flexibility of skills, feats, and prestige classes does allow for more meaningful characterization of your character. However, this is sort of a trap, in that when you sacrifice combat effectiveness (which you will unless your character idea happens to be an asskicker) the joys of playing the game will gradually decrease as the players who wanted to be combat asskickers always outshine you in the tense situations. The main reward of playing 3e is being able to take shit out in combat. If you are ineffective and your cohorts are effective, the game becomes a drag. So actually all that flexibility is really there for the minimaxers more than anything else.

Another problem is that if you play with only the official feats, there is a right answer as to which ones your character should take, but if you play with unofficial ones, many are broken or poorly integrated into the game as a whole. This means almost everyone I know who plays it patches the feat system for their home game.

Blah, blah, blah.

One thing I will say is this: I'm an old D&Der from back in the day, and I've had grand times playing the old game. But what I loved most about it, especially from the pre-1e/AD&D days, was the experimental spirit that came from everyone essentially having to reinvent the game for themselves. 3e does not foster this creative spirit. The Forge does. So I'm here at the Forge, not necessarily as someone who has a deep need to leave my fantasy roots behind, or as someone who had bad or broken experiences in D&D, but as someone who loved the challenge to my creativity that game represented. 3e doesn't give me that challenge any more. This place does. So I'm here learning from you all even as my Arduin Grimoires, yellow caltrop d4's, old Gygax and Jaquays modules, and all the rest still stay at the ready. Because even though I'm in many ways a simple-minded fantasy gaming grognard, I know what real progress and real creativity look like, and this is the one place I consistently find it in the current world of gaming.
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Lxndr
Acts of Evil Playtesters
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Posts: 1113

Master of the Inkstained Robes


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« Reply #26 on: April 06, 2004, 09:36:58 AM »

My opinion about D20 (at least as it manifests in those gamebooks that put the "D20" label on them) can be summed up thusly:

Ralph was too generous and forgiving.  But bully to you, those who have the fortitude and make-up to enjoy it.
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Alexander Cherry, Twisted Confessions Game Design
Maker of many fine story-games!
Moderator of Indie Netgaming
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