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NickMiddleton last won the day on April 23 2017

NickMiddleton had the most liked content!

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About NickMiddleton

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    Senior Member
  • Birthday 08/23/1967

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  • RPG Biography
    Playing since 1979
  • Current games
    Al-Qadim, 2300AD
  • Location
    City of the Sons of the Yew aka Eboracum
  • Blurb
    Live in United Kingdom

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  1. See Loz’s post in this thread back in 2008: cheers, Nick
  2. Organisation. I think Jason (as primary author of the revisions / collation of prior art that is the current BRP BGB), Charlie Krank and Lynn Willis (as the editors) did an admirable job of marshalling a large, multifaceted text in to as concise and coherent a whole as they could - but with ten years experience in the wild and perspective I think more could be done to delineate the various optional systems (which ones don't play well together, which ones do; which ones suite particular types of games etc). And absolutely there are options from CoC 7e, Pulp Cthulhu, RQ!7 and indeed Magic World# that are worthy of inclusion. But the crucial thing about such a work of synthesis is organisation. I DON'T think it needs a radical re-write. Chaosium in their hey day were the gold standard in RPG publishing for sparse, elegant layout; concise, direct writing and masterful precision and economy in editing and presentation. The BGB didn't quite hit those heights, nor have subsequent publications IMO (albeit huge strides have been made in the new era in terms of presentation at least) - it would be grand to see a revised BGB that hit those heights again. I agree with G33k that an "outsider" in the editors seat would be a good thing. No offense to the Design Mechanism or Mythras, but the place I would look for pointers in terms of organisation and layout is Monte Cook - since the Ptolus setting book, the large scale published works Cook has put out have set the standard as far as RPG books as reference works go IMO. Cheers, Nick Middleton # I'm flattered someone mentioned Arete - my own feeling is I'd want to extensively re-write that to simplify and streamline it; but I think there's is much in core Magic World's character generation in particular that would be worth including in a revised BGB - the skill allocations by blocks, skill categories and cultures in particular. Put it this way - they are included in every BRP game I've run since I first encountered them.
  3. "Ask ten different scientists about the environment, population control, genetics, and you'll get ten different answers. But there's one thing every scientist on the planet agrees on. Whether it happens in a hundred years or a thousand years or a million years, eventually our Sun will grow cold and go out. When that happens, it won't just take us. It'll take Marilyn Monroe, and Lao-Tzu, and Einstein, and Morobuto, and Buddy Holly, and Aristophanes, and all of this…all of this…was for nothing. Unless we go to the stars." Nick
  4. Yup - fundamentally, don't go up against a master of the sword unless you have a way of tilting things in your favour (e.g. superior numbers). And note that he's rolling a critical on 24 or less - near as dammit 1 in 4 attacks with the Greatsword... 😮 Cheers, Nick
  5. That HPL’s racist and misogynistic views were far more common, even prevalent, during his lifetime is certainly true. Does that make them acceptable, then or now? Even during his life time, Lovecraft's views were not universally accepted - Mahatma Gandhi to pick one famous (and equally if not more complex) contemporary had different views. Lovecraft is rightly regarded as a seminal figure in the development of weird fiction and horror: part of any honest assessment of his contribution has to address his misogyny and racism, both in the context of his life and times (and correspondence with fellow writers such as Robert E Howard) and in what it says about subsequent generations appreciation of his work; especially that apparently it is acceptable to ignore or gloss over this part of his world view. Regards, NDM
  6. In the Southern Reaches I'd make Demons dark spirits of the bleak and forgotten places, tortured denizens of dark and abandoned lands, the bitter children of the misdeeds and vile ambitions of great lords and high princes of ancient times (Fey and Mortal) that sowed poisoned seed on twisted soil. In other settings I'd stick with a more Moorcockian take and similar. I am very fond of the Malazan setting, and in Midnight Tides(the ffith book in the Malazan Book of the Fallen) there's a whole thread where a character befriends a summoned / bound demon - and discovers that is just a citizen of another plane, dragged to the characters home plane and bound in service. Some are also just comedy monsters... (spoilers, obviously!): https://malazan.fandom.com/wiki/Lilac https://malazan.fandom.com/wiki/Kenryll'ah_demon_princes Cheers, Nick
  7. I'd contact Chaosium directly and privately - and this is a good starting point: https://www.chaosium.com/fan-use-and-licensing/ Copyright, trademark law and good practice are almost always more complex and subtle than fans generally assume - and fans always seem to underestimate how important these things are to publishers. Conducting these sorts of discussions publicly thus often gets confused and fraught - best to go to the source, understand the publishers _actual_ requirements and discus with them directly. Cheers, Nick
  8. Except that in my experience it’s none of those things and adds descriptive richness. Please stop generalising your personal preferences into universal objective truth: they are not (neither are mine, obviously).
  9. In a fixed AV system plate armour always stops e.g. 7 points. There is no variability in the performance of the armour, only in the rating of the strike against the armour (the damage rolled). In a variable AV system the random amount of damage rolled represents the strike; the random AV rolled represents the passive defence achieved when / where the strike lands. You clearly don't find that description / concept compelling. Others do.
  10. In the dim and distant,before Cthulhu Dark Ages was formally published, it was a fan thing and IIRC back then it was clearly drawing quite heavily on Elric! (the game magic World is based on) for stuff not covered in the then core CoC rules. Jason Durall also provided an essay on doing Sword & Sorcery in Cthulhu - "Tombs & Tentacles" - in Uncounted Worlds issue 2 (https://www.chaosium.com/content/FreePDFs/BRP/UW001 - Uncounted Worlds Issue 2.pdf) Cheers, Nick
  11. Quantifying physical action down to that level seemed a really cool thing back when I first played RQ - and it tended to chime with the reality of my HEMA experience. But after a decade of HEMA and a couple of decades of RQ and similar systems I came to find the execution unnecessarily fiddly. More abstract systems could capture the feel, and descriptive and narrative logic could supply the colour that location charsets were providing. I haven't run anything using hit locations for over a decade. Just because one doesn't agree with or understand a model doesn't make it dumb. An armour that provides 1D6 protection _by definition_ provides a range of protection - that armour gives you 3-4 protection typically. If fortune favours you / your opponent is unlucky / your position yourself well, you get 6 points of protection (the blow lands absolutely perpendicular in the centre of a piece of armour, maximising its ability to spread the impact / provide the highest resistance to the blow). If it all goes poorly for you / well for your opponent you get a single point of protection (the blow angles in to catch the edge of a piece of armour / gets funnelled in to a gusset or other weak point). Now if your opponent has fluffed their strike (only rolled minimum damage) how you position your body / how lucky you are probably wont matter that much... but if they have executed their swing perfectly (got their full weight behind the blow ) you need to hope fortune favours you... A lot of the factors hit locations are trying to model (but for some get too fiddly / to fragile as a result) are abstracted in the interplay of variable armour values with variable damage rolls There's a separate argument that if using armour value rolls ALL values should be multiple dice (so the distribution is biased to more common value), which would give armours a somewhat more predictable value. But I've generally found that it falls in to the "pay off not worth the effort" pot, as I'm happy with standard values. For me idea that armour provides an absolutely consistent level of protection / damage nullification I find deeply counter intuitive. I like their being a variable element that "belongs" to the defender (AV) as well as one the "belongs" to the attacker (damage dealt) and I have found variable AV and major Wound levels to be _much_ faster / easily communicated to new players / flexible in play. Nick
  12. Not a lot really - the underlying assumption, that one can in any useful sense matriculate between disparate fictional sources (by different authors) to reach a codified taxonomy of exactly how mcguffins and characters rank in some sort of "objective hierarchy" is a nonsense, and has been since the first play ground argument about whether Superman can beat the Hulk. BRP is more than capable of describing different settings: one of the seminal Stormbringer supplements was the Rogue Mistress campaign, and I like many fans I knew had been running plane hopping / multi-dimensional games for a decade or so prior to that seeing release. It can also adapt to far more than the "gritty" style people assume is its only mode (and which is unquestionably its metier). How "powerful" Stormbringer is relative to anything else is a question, like how fast is the Millenium Falcon or how strong is the Hulk that actually has no definitive answer other than "whatever the plot requires at that particular moment". They are all tools of fiction, subservient to authorial intent. And thus are fundamentally NOT amenable to the sort of "objective" codification a game requires, where by definition the outcome is NOT determined by authorial fiat. Good writing provides the illusion of underlying consistency to how something behaves in fiction; great games _in retrospect_ are full of moments that resonate and affect the participants like great fiction - but they get to those similar destinations by fundamentally _different_ means. If a GM decides in their version of the multiverse Stormbringer can cut the One Ring that's fine and true for their multiverse / game - but it is an arbitrary GM decision. Just as it is an arbitrary decision that in _my_ multiverse the gods of Law and Chaos (and Sauron and Stormbringer) flee in terror from Dragnipur... and Stormbringer _cannot_ cut the One Ring, because it can _only_ be harmed by the fires that forged it. Cheers, Nick
  13. Given that duration is pretty consistent with standard Sorcery spells in MW (and Elric!), and Undo Sorcery "weakens" target spells it, I generally favour reducing the effective power (so an Undo Sorcery 1 would reduce Unbreakable Bonds to 2/3rd caster power, an Undo 2 would reduce it to 1/3 caster power, and a 3 point Undo would eliminate it) rather than duration... but I can see arguments either way... Actually Nick J's suggestion is probably best - when casting the Undo Sorcery one has to specify either shortened duration OR reduced power. An Unbreakable Bonds on a mighty-thewed barbarian type one would go with power (they get a chance to break free every round, and you'd expect a Conan type to be able to pull that off in short order); but a sacrificial victim (say a child...) held in place with an Unbreakable Bonds? Might be better to just cut short the duration. Cheers, Nick
  14. I've always tended to make do with the equivalents for Elric! / Stormbringer 5th edition (virtual dientical rules wise to Magic world): http://www.stormbringerrpg.com/?page_id=2533 Although I always intended at some point to use a PDF editor to extract the key tables from Magic World to create a separate "reference" document for use as well. Cheers, Nick
  15. Still remember getting stuck with my kids in a shiny new Virgin Voyager train in Bristol Station in the South West of England ~15 years ago. Train crew struggled for 40 minutes with various issues with the on board systems, we pulled ~200yards out of the station and it conked out, we spent another 40 minutes with lights coming on, going off, information boards blanking and scrolling through, then a disgruntled guard came on the tannoy: "Right, we have tried everything except turning the whole train of and back on again - if that doesn't work we will have to get shunted back in to the station and put you all on a different train".. Apparently it WAS running a version of Windows , because after a hard reboot it ran fine all the way to York... My kids will never let me live that down as I work in the rail industry. Nick
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