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klecser

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klecser last won the day on June 16

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About klecser

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    Senior Member

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  • RPG Biography
    27 year role-playing veteran
  • Current games
    Call of Cthulhu, Traveller, Savage Worlds, Runequest: Role-playing in Glorantha
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    Omaha
  • Blurb
    Fun first.

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  1. Check your emails if you've been waiting on a coupon! HU2E, CDA, and Smoking Ruins are all in stock at US Warehouses. I got my coupons a couple hours ago. Remember that you need to ask Dustin to combine your coupons if you want to combine shipping and get a single order. There is max one coupon per order, but he'll get you a shiny new one that includes however many purchases you wanna make.
  2. The four scenarios in the Starter were specifically curated as classic CoC scenarios, with Alone Against the Flames a great solo scenario. TheKeeper/player scenarios are all very flexible. The scenarios in Doors to Darkness run a tad bit more "dungeon-crawley." I swear to you I am not trying to insult anyone there. I've ran out of both collections and have had a blast out of both. I personally think that the three group scenarios in the Starter Set are my preferred over the scenarios in DtD. Edge of Darkness (in the Starter) alone is arguably what CoC is all about. And if I could only get one product at a particular time, the Starter Set is one of the best values in gaming, in my opinion. One could argue that an advantage of the Starter is that it has paper copies of handouts (assuming you don't mind cutting the booklet up, saving you printing from PDF) and you won't get that with Doors. But I hope you get lots of opinions because everyone is very different on scenario preferences. I wish you success and keep letting us know how we can support you. Everyone is welcome in Call of Cthulhu.
  3. Solid advice above. Also check out this thread:
  4. Just...wow. He's working with Arc Dream?They're working with him? We are living in a time in which people are seeing what they can get away with. And until the fanbase holds these authors/companies accountable, I fear that poorly run Kickstarters are going to continue. Update as I dig: He's heavily involved with Actual Plays too? All while his Backers have had their money stolen. What the actual heck? I can't speak for other industries, but in mine, if anyone pulled anything even remotely close to this, we would run you completely out of relevancy. We have zero tolerance for shysters.
  5. Role-playing games are for everyone. Your Game Will Vary. Why did I choose these four? They're the ones I felt like talking about today.
  6. I'm glad you posted this, but it also begs the question as to why people aren't posting their lists here. Anyone who has played games for any amount of time knows that official forums are the most likely place to be heard by companies.
  7. Um, doesn't look to me like he read wrong? Did you read his whole post?
  8. IIRC, Mike indicated that there were some special plans for this in the works.
  9. By the letter of the RAW, sure. But YGWV. If a Keeper decides that a player can buy off a firearm malfunction, then they can. Lloyd brings up another struggle we have in the hobby. And that is how different people attenuate to RAW. Personally, I think that it is fully appropriate that, if you go to an FLGS or a Con, it is fair for you to expect the RAW to be used, because it helps players to manage their expectations of what a new Keeper will and will not do. The other side of this coin is that there are also people who seem to think (and I'm not saying that Llyod is one of them) that the RAW of any game should be treated as sacred, and that people who violate the RAW in their home games are "doing it wrong." The truth is that everyone's game will vary, and you can do whatever you want with the ruleset. If I were Keeping at an FLGS or Con and knew in advance that I wanted to play the RAW differently, I would just be upfront about that at the table. This is central to the discussion because everyone has a different base set of assumptions for how mechanics work in the game. People don't like to have their assumptions contended with. Yet, all of us attenuating to universal application of the rules would basically just mean some people wouldn't have fun. I've been wondering why people are so passionate about one side of this discussion. And it may very well come down to perspective on RAW.
  10. Only if purchased from Chaosium or a Bits and Mortar store, I believe. The incentive for PDF is to support small stores and the publisher.
  11. I agree, and I think our perspectives are closer than you think. In the time I've spent thinking about this, it appears as if there is some degree of semantic differences that fuels the difference in perspective. Earlier in the thread Ian Absentia commented that this debate has never been resolved. Yet, we keep flogging the dead horse. Why? I think it is for two reasons. First, we all want everyone at the table to have fun. And there certainly are differences of opinion of what makes something fun. And while fun may seem like something locked to the one experiencing it, in a collaborative game it is not. One person's fun can be another person's dissatisfaction. Second, and related to the first, is the impression I get that some people believe that their fun at the expense of others is perfectly reasonable. This is where the table contract comes in. Any Keeper running a table needs to communicate with their players. And really probe what people find fun and what they don't. Communication is difficult. Questions I am very curious about: To what extent is there a division in the hobby? Tables that define "fun" by a particular creed and tables that define drastically different rules for said fun? How many are mixed and what challenges present themselves under those circumstances? Failure is indeed interesting. But something being interesting and something being satisfying do not always coincide. That is what I was getting at with those examples. Failure in any of those situations would certainly be interesting. But it doesn't satisfy. And I think that might be getting to the crux in differences in preference for story-telling. I personally do not believe that it is easy to craft both interesting and satisfying under random conditions. The dice don't know what satisfies people. People do. And whether one fudges dice or fudges description, the end result is some fudging is needed somewhere if we intend to produce satisfying. And before people jump on me, I never said that satisfying means "players always win." I've never said that. I've given my prime example of dissatisfying earlier in the thread: Random flukes that produce inane, satisfaction-killing, absurd outcomes. We're using them to inject an element of chance. Not complete and total governance by chance. And that is the key to what I oppose. I know role-players that wholeheartedly believe that a story in game should be determined entirely by chance, and if everyone leaves the table having seen nothing fun, interesting, or satisfying happening, then oh well. We were at the "mercy" of the dice all along. I guess the dice didn't allow an interesting story. Can you imagine a novelist rolling dice in writing a story or character? It would be a disaster. And yet, you get role-players treating the dice as if they are the sacred arbiter of story-telling. It is bizarre, and in my opinion is a liability in the hobby. I think it is important to note that positive things can be different and interesting as well. I can't tell you the number of times that my players completely upended my plans and then succeeded. And I had a blast seeing them succeed. Part of me also thinks that there is this delight in seeing people fail. Why can't there be delight and interest in seeing them succeed? But this seems to be the argument of many. If they don't see threat, they can't imagine failure, and if they can't imagine failure, then the endeavor isn't worth doing. It's almost as if the journey is irrelevant to them? The legacy of Gygax is that he has engendered what I consider to be only one perspective as to what can be satisfying in the hobby. I believe his players knew what they signed up for and it isn't my job to tell them how to have fun. But I also think the consequence of Gygax' success is that he created a generation of role-players that equated brutal unyielding chance with fun. I happen to not equate those two things. And I also believe it to be a tactical wargamer's perspective not a story-telling perspective. When someone tells me that I'm cheating by fudging, what I really hear people saying is I define what is fun and what you define as fun doesn't matter. And I basically refuse to accept that. Yeah, I don't disagree. We're closer than you might think. I think the key difference is that I view the satisfying outcome possibilities as being just as interesting under circumstances of "unexpected success" as "unexpected failure." And while don't begrudge anyone their preference of "unexpected failure is more satisfying," I also find it a cynical way to game. To each their own. But gaming is for everyone. Not just the cynical. I think it is important that we discuss these things. If we want better tables, we have to understand each other better. The exact wrong thing to do would be to not talk about perspectives on fudging.
  12. Similar experiences. My players aren't fools. Why do Keepers treat their players like fools? Why do Keepers assume their players will make foolish decisions when given agency? Let's take the gun malfunction as an example for the topic. Jane brings her rifle to bear against the cultist bearing down on her. She pulls the trigger. It jams! But Jane is determined to stop this vile organization. She checks the bolt action quickly, finds a misalignment, and rights it. (Luck spent) *Boom* The Cultist won't be spreading their vile poison anymore! At least this one, of legion. Some gamers prefer for the encounter to go the other way. Jane pulls the trigger and it jams. And that's fine. There is nothing wrong with that. But I think that the key thing here is that there is also nothing wrong with the alternative. I just really dislike the "dice tell the story" exclusively attitude. I understand the logic behind it. People want random elements injected into their stories to make them more exciting. But "random elements" of plot and situation alone are never what make a story interesting. They never have been. Luke misses his shot on the exhaust port because he fumbled the roll is not interesting to me. Professor Armitage fumbling his spell casting in the denouement is not interesting to me. Trinity missing the point blank shot on the Agent, resulting in Neo dying, is not interesting to me. I'm pretty sure that anyone who acts like their stories are completely random are deliberately ignoring the ways in which they make choices that guide story. "Dice alter the story" is more to my taste, and maybe I'm just splitting hairs on the language. But I've listened to gamers speak on this for ages and many that I know act like dice are the only vehicle that alters the story. It's a shame too because that is pretty self-deprecating.
  13. Great question. I predominately do campaigns, but I've also run one-shots at FLGS' and with friends. Keeping each type of game is very different. Pros and cons that I perceive for using Luck in each type: Campaign Pros: Luck can really give a sense of both excitement and relief when it helps players succeed. The Group Luck roll really helps to balance Luck use because everyone suffers if someone blows all their luck in a short time. Players get attached to their characters, and while I appreciate the nature of CoC being about lethality, it also isn't a Keeper's (or anyone's) job to tell anyone how they should feel about their game experiences. All of the "but that isn't the right way to play CoC!' voices in the audience, I'm looking at you. Campaign Cons: The Group Luck roll can also make it so that players are afraid to spend Luck and it actually becomes a source of anxiety for them. Maybe this isn't really a Con, because then you're just playing 1E-6E. 😜 A Con may be that Luck rewards are a thing and it is something the Keeper has to consider and manage. If you don't like managing numeric statistics of a group, that is a downside. One-Shot Pros: Can ease the likelihood of an early player death that leaves them sitting at the table. It gives them the power to decide how big of a risk they want to take in a situation rather than the Keeper deciding that. Obviously bringing extra character sheets can alleviate this too. As above, some players like the idea of a sense of control over big moments or as a security blanket. Players do fear getting an inexperienced or vindictive Keeper that will leave them high and dry for most a game. One-Shot Cons: Min-maxers will deliberately withhold spending Luck until the one critical moment and then blow it all to craft a critical success, thereby getting what they want: "winning" a role-playing game. Many Keepers restrict Luck spending at all in one-shots or limit the total amount of Luck that can be spent in a one-shot. I've heard "no more than half" as a common example. Those are not exhaustive lists. Others will come up with other examples. That's just off the top of my head whilst doing three things at once. All of that said, and on point to this topic, we have trust issues in the hobby. A lot of these discussions seem to boil down to "I can't trust my players" or "I can't trust my Keeper." It boggles my mind that some Keepers especially seem to assume that their players have poor story intentions or aren't smart enough to manage mechanics. And there are certainly both players and Keepers that exhibit all of the traits we dislike about each group. It is important for us to assume the best first, IMO.
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