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RQ Glorantha desiderata: give me a charsheet with boxes to tick!


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16 hours ago, soltakss said:

RQ2 and RQ3 had experience by tick-box, which led to the Tock-Chase, where everyone tried loads of skills, just to get a tick, with a fairly random set of increases.

I abandoned this years ago, replacing it with a number of Experience Points that the players can choose to spend on increasing any skill, even ones they didn;t use in that session. It works a lot better, as it stops the tick chase and allows players to focus on improving those skills they want to improve.

I've GM'd since the early 80's.  Everyone loves tick boxes.  There's no such thing as Tock-Chase.  It's a myth propagated by GM's who don't know the simple word : NO.  Better yet, the simple phrases: You can mark it. and Don't mark it.

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As a GM, I have better things to do than to than police skill ticks. I also have better things to argue about than whether a skill use gets a tick or not, as the criteria are vague at best.  

Hi, This came up in the BRP forum and Rick Meints suggested me to post in the RQ forum. I was thinking that a great mechanic that I'd love to see back in future incarnations of RQ is the exp

In RQ2 and RQ3, the rules are quite explicit that the skill must be used successfully in conditions of stress. Jumping over a stream or climbing a tree simply to get a check shouldn't cut it. Pendrago

2 hours ago, smiorgan said:

BTW, a house rule I used was to allow to tick all skills, including knowledge skills. When you use knowledge it becomes clearer and more solid in your head. And (depending on the situations) you might also learn new facts.

 

 

When someone in the party makes a World Lore, everyone in the party who failed the World Lore gets to mark it.  You learn something new everyday :)

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26 minutes ago, Pentallion said:

Everyone loves tick boxes.

Except, of course those of us who don't.

27 minutes ago, Pentallion said:

There's no such thing as Tock-Chase.

Whatever you call it, the phenomenon does exist. Just saying it doesn't does not make it so. I have withnessed it myself several times.

29 minutes ago, Pentallion said:

It's a myth propagated by GM's who don't know the simple word : NO.  Better yet, the simple phrases: You can mark it. and Don't mark it.

Just because the GM may say something like this doesn't mean some people will no try. And even the strictest GM may let it slide on occasion. Players are slippery devils.

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5 minutes ago, smjn said:

Whatever you call it, the phenomenon does exist. Just saying it doesn't does not make it so. I have withnessed it myself several times.

I agree; it does exist. I've had a player pull it on me once. And I gave him a look that expressed knock it off, and that was that. If he'd pushed it, I would have said, "stop being ridiculous", and thrown a few Cheetos at him.

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Just because the GM may say something like this doesn't mean some people will no try. And even the strictest GM may let it slide on occasion. Players are slippery devils.

It's blatantly obvious when someone tries this. If they keep trying it, and don't like to be told to knock it off, then I'd question their motivations for playing - power fantasy wish fulfillment at the expense of others? And I'd talk with them about it, and if we couldn't come to an agreement, I likely wouldn't play with them anymore. Most people I've played with are far more reasonable and personable than this, but I've met a few odd-duck gamers that I haven't gotten along with and stopped playing with.

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Ticks can work okay in a game with training rules like Runequest. They don't work at all well in Call of Cthulhu. Without training rules, they make no allowance for things that happen "offscreen" or during downtime.

They also make a lot less sense for knowledge skills than they do for skills based on physical activity. I can see how climbing a wall can make you a little better at climbing a wall. On the other hand, consider a situation in which a player with a 15% in History make a successful roll. Okay, so that fact was part of the 15% you happen to know. Why does this suggest that because he knows this one fact that he suddenly knows more facts? It's a demonstration of knowledge he already he has, not a learning experience. 

As for the whole tick-hunting situation, I agree that it varies from group to group on how big a problem it is. Still, the system is rewarding tick-hunting. It's rewarding you for looking for using every skill on your sheet at least once a session, but if follow the incentives of the system, you are a bad player. 

What I do like about ticks is that they mean players will have skill gains they never would have actually chosen. My feelings on the matter are complicated. 

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14 minutes ago, Baulderstone said:

On the other hand, consider a situation in which a player with a 15% in History make a successful roll. Okay, so that fact was part of the 15% you happen to know. Why does this suggest that because he knows this one fact that he suddenly knows more facts? It's a demonstration of knowledge he already he has, not a learning experience. 

Making use of and applying the character's knowledge in practice helps them make connections they would not otherwise have made. This leads them to gain insight into their excisting knowledge and understand things better. So an "experience" tick might be in order. Other than this, I agree with your post.

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3 hours ago, K Peterson said:

 

It doesn't exist because a good GM doesn't allow it.  GM's, therefore, have no right to complain about it.  They've only themselves to blame if they let it be a problem.   Therefore, the entire argument is invalid.  It's a myth.

 

As for those who don't like tick marks, well, there's always a grinch ;)

 

 

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15 hours ago, Baulderstone said:

They also make a lot less sense for knowledge skills than they do for skills based on physical activity. I can see how climbing a wall can make you a little better at climbing a wall. On the other hand, consider a situation in which a player with a 15% in History make a successful roll. Okay, so that fact was part of the 15% you happen to know. Why does this suggest that because he knows this one fact that he suddenly knows more facts? It's a demonstration of knowledge he already he has, not a learning experience.

While there are certain cases in which use of a knowledge skill is purely a matter of "can you recall this specific fact?", I would say that description primarily fits things like playing Trivial Pursuit - someone asked you a question in isolation and you either knew the answer or you didn't.  In such cases, I agree with you and would not award a tick.

However, the more common real-world case is that you're using the knowledge skill to solve a problem with context around it, which means that, by examining the context, you can be exposed to things you didn't already know and establish connections between them.  For example, I frequently learn new Swedish words by reading newspapers and seeing those words in context, where I can then deduce their meaning.  I made my Language (Swedish) roll (understood the text) and, as a result, gained a tick on the skill (potentially increased my skill level by learning new words, grammatical structure, etc.).

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16 hours ago, Pentallion said:

It doesn't exist because a good GM doesn't allow it.  GM's, therefore, have no right to complain about it.  They've only themselves to blame if they let it be a problem.   Therefore, the entire argument is invalid.  It's a myth.

As a GM, I have better things to do than to than police skill ticks. I also have better things to argue about than whether a skill use gets a tick or not, as the criteria are vague at best.

 

I have seen the tick-chase and didn't like it. In fact, one of the players in one of my old groups drew a cartoon that had a PC searching around, jumping over a stream, climbing up a tree, casting disruption at a skeleton, only for someone to shout "Derak - Have you finished collecting firewood yet?". 

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28 minutes ago, Trifletraxor said:

I like the ticks! And my players get to tick-chase as much as they want within certain limits. We have 3 major (+ some lesser) campaigns going on at any time, so skills going through the roof is not a problem.

Yes tick-chase can even work in favor of good role-playing as a powerful instigator to action and thinking out of the box. Like, the character wants to raise his horse riding so he decides that he is going to impress the young countess with his horseman prowess...

The GM might restrict the awarding of ticks to special moments where the players have to surmount an obstacle with creative use of their skills. In D&D4 these were called skill challenges. You set the difficulty (e.g. 6 successes before 3 failures, one fumble and you're out, criticals make the following roll easy) but it's not necessary that you pre-define the relevant skills. You let your players narrate why their skill rolls are relevant. Each skill challenge is a tick-lottery (e.g. a 6 successes challenge gives 6 experience ticks, plus immediate 1% increase for each critical and fumble). Outside of challenges or combat no ticks are awarded. 

That's a very gamist option and might not be for everyone's taste. 

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On 12/6/2015 at 10:45 PM, Sunwolfe said:

Rather than seek an offical change, I say house rule; house rule; house rule...Just my style and game...

A couple to things:

Rooting about in my "house-rule" ben, I uncovered an odd HR for experience checks that I'd forgotten. The only way a PC could earn a skill check--or tick in the box--was if he/she rolled a crit when using the skill. This slowed progression down significantly as I recall, but my players never complained. We even toyed with the HR that after ten crits, a DnD-like feat would be tailor made (adapted) to the system and made available to the character during training. I can only ever remember one player making the tenth check, but he never settled on a feat to convert before the campaign ended.

Also, players always waited for me to give them the green light to roll skill-checks regardless of tick box checks.

Do your players automatically get to roll for skill-checks after each successful use of a skill or do you regulate when they can or can't roll for improvements in some way?

Cheers!

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12 hours ago, Sunwolfe said:

Rooting about in my "house-rule" ben, I uncovered an odd HR for experience checks that I'd forgotten. The only way a PC could earn a skill check--or tick in the box--was if he/she rolled a crit when using the skill. This slowed progression down significantly as I recall, but my players never complained. 

That's a pretty conservative approach. Did your players leverage training rules during their characters' downtime? And if so, was training house-ruled to slow its rate of progression, too?

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Also, players always waited for me to give them the green light to roll skill-checks regardless of tick box checks.

Do your players automatically get to roll for skill-checks after each successful use of a skill or do you regulate when they can or can't roll for improvements in some way?

Personally-speaking, if the skill roll is in the context of a stressful situation where consequences and randomness are risks, then I'm perfectly fine with a check being awarded for the skill. If the action is routine then no check is awarded; and in many cases, no roll is made if the character has at least some appropriate % of skill.

However, I don't go for rolls-for-checks after every session of play. For me, they occur at an appropriate break in the action/quest/adventure - a period of downtime and reflection. Usually every few sessions. By then, the characters will have a number of skills checked, instead of onesie-twosie-ing advancement. The rate of advancement is slowed some, especially for weapon skills.

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On 12/10/2015 at 7:27 AM, K Peterson said:

That's a pretty conservative approach. Did your players leverage training rules during their characters' downtime? And if so, was training house-ruled to slow its rate of progression, too?

I have read various posts and game-reports relating players given down-time wherein they trained or worked for income as a regular part of game play. Our games rarely had that. When it was time for a session to end, we'd stop the session where ever we were in the continuum--freeze frame--and pick-up at that spot when we got back together again.

We did have a few "training session games,"  at the end or beginning of a new story-arch wherein we actully roleplayed the training as a mini-advenure. As I recall we used the rules from the book (RQ3) fairly straight forwardly. I did/do, however, HR rule that training must involve a "teacher/coach" whose skill is at least 90% or higher in the particular skill being taught. The results of skills training conducted by fellow adventurer's was reduced by halfish.

In retrospect, I skill training sessions were pretty lively. Some players joked that they deserved expereince checks on top of the rolls for the experience session due to intensity--I'm specifically thinking of a player who was a smith and was trying to improve his crafting skills by forging a quality sword under the guidance of a master-weapon's smith. Challenging materials to gather and lots of breakage :-). I think this route may have made those sessions feel a bit more important and therefore deserving of the attention given them, but, as mentioned, I seem to recall only a few such times.

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On 12/7/2015 at 6:54 AM, soltakss said:

As a GM, I have better things to do than to than police skill ticks. I also have better things to argue about than whether a skill use gets a tick or not, as the criteria are vague at best.

 

I have seen the tick-chase and didn't like it. In fact, one of the players in one of my old groups drew a cartoon that had a PC searching around, jumping over a stream, climbing up a tree, casting disruption at a skeleton, only for someone to shout "Derak - Have you finished collecting firewood yet?". 

Sorry you have such rotten players that it's a problem.

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18 minutes ago, Pentallion said:

Sorry you have such rotten players that it's a problem.

I have played with 3 RuneQuest groups in my 30-odd years of roleplaying.

 

The first, at Uni, lasted for 3 years, before we all left and went our separate ways.

The second, post-Uni lasted for eight years before I moved to Ireland.

The third has lasted for 10 years and is still going.

 

Each group has had a fairly constant set of players, the last group having lost and gained one player, so I would not say that any of my players are rotten.

 

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In RQ2 and RQ3, the rules are quite explicit that the skill must be used successfully in conditions of stress. Jumping over a stream or climbing a tree simply to get a check shouldn't cut it. Pendragon went a step further and made it clear that the GM tells the player when they can check for experience, a salutary reform in my opinion.

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It would be more work for the poor referee, but I like the idea of a tick-sheet being in his or her hands, rather than the players'. To some extent this was already the case with "secret" rolls like Hide in Cover where the player didn't know for sure whether a character had succeeded or not.

Edited by Vile
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1 hour ago, Vile said:

It would be more work for the poor referee, but I like the idea of a tick-sheet being in his or her hands, rather than the players'. To some extent this was already the case with "secret" rolls like Hide in Cover where the player didn't know for sure whether a character had succeeded or not.

In some cases, it might actually be less of a pain. If the GM is policing ticks anyway, it can mean a lot of skill rolls get followed by a question from the player about whether they can make a tick. Making a quick tick yourself might be less work then fielding all those questions. And if a player feels they earned a tick you didn't give them, it's discussed after the session, not during, which helps pacing. Players are also only going to question omissions they remember too, which should filter out some truly trivial rolls. 

Next time I use a BRP variant with ticks, I think I'll do that. 

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7 hours ago, Vile said:

It would be more work for the poor referee, but I like the idea of a tick-sheet being in his or her hands, rather than the players'. To some extent this was already the case with "secret" rolls like Hide in Cover where the player didn't know for sure whether a character had succeeded or not.

Doesn't strike me as a problem.  I'm usually taking enough notes during play that also noting when the PCs get skill ticks wouldn't be a significant additional burden.

I'm currently prepping a campaign that will be mostly-RQ6 (which is an Improvement Point-based variant, rather than tick-based), with skill ticks as one of the things imported from other BRP flavors and I was already planning to track the ticks myself to avoid having to tell players when to tick their skills or risk getting into mid-game debates over it.

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On 12/24/2015 at 0:02 PM, soltakss said:

I have played with 3 RuneQuest groups in my 30-odd years of roleplaying.

 

The first, at Uni, lasted for 3 years, before we all left and went our separate ways.

The second, post-Uni lasted for eight years before I moved to Ireland.

The third has lasted for 10 years and is still going.

 

Each group has had a fairly constant set of players, the last group having lost and gained one player, so I would not say that any of my players are rotten.

 

Then the problem with tick boxes IS a myth in other words?

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I have personally never seen a problem with tick boxes. However that may simply be because I never had a problem with tick hunting.

If the players can come up with some rational as to why they need to use the skill in a particular situation, they should be able to check off the skill as far as I'm concerned. As a game master, its not my player's job to keep me happy, its my job to run a game that keeps them happy. If they really enjoy seeing their characters develop at the end of every session, then damn it, their going to. If they feel the need to switch from their battle axe to their longsword in the middle of a pitched battle, just to have a chance to check off the skill (and their willing to waste a round doing so), then so be it.

Its a game, and games should be fun. I let each group determine what's fun for them, and we go from there. If I have to police the game just so its fun for me, then its fun for no one.

Rod

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9 hours ago, threedeesix said:

Its a game, and games should be fun. I let each group determine what's fun for them, and we go from there. If I have to police the game just so its fun for me, then its fun for no one.

Well spoken. Being a GM shouldnt mean being a HR Manager. Each troupe is different, and everyone needs to compromise. The key is to find the group's mojo and hum with that :D

Edited by Mankcam
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