Not bandwagon on some other popular trend (i.e. no OSR, no ______-world, no "fixing" some personal minor issue with whatever edition of D&D, no trying to make a tabletop version of some popular video game or movie, no calling it rules-light in an attempt to pass off your total lack of creative mechanics or game design knowledge as an actual feature, etc...)
>>43038198 How do you feel about two different teirs of systems in the same game? A basic way and a intricate way, and a GM our group decides which version to use either for the whole thing or for individual parts?
Not him, but I can give an example: In 4e, the cyclops has an ability called evil eye. That's not a problem in itself, the problem is that rather than have a an evil eye ability that you could reference, each type of cyclops has a different evil eye ability with little in common besides being called 'evil eye.' One grants a free basic melee attack; another grants a bonus to ranged attacks; another lets the cyclops shift 2 squares instead of 1; another applies a penalty to a target's speed; and so forth.
That's a lot mechanics, but you're not really getting anything for them, and it adds a hell of a lot of confusion. They could have had a base evil eye ability that they referenced with minor changes which would have enriched the game rather than bogged it down, and the players/characters could have some concept of what 'evil eye' actually was and did.
I really want to see more games follow along the same lines as Legends of the Wulin, in that it's a mechanically heavy system yet is also very narrative focused.
I really love that combination. I want to see it applied to more styles and genres of game. I'm bored of dull, crunch heavy days or ultra light narrativist games which have so few rules they barely exist. Getting the best of both worlds is just wonderful, but there are so few games which have even explored that design space.
It'd need a skill system built with the same lavish attention to detail given to most games' combat systems. I'd want to be able to have crafting-focused sessions or overland travel-focused sessions or archive delving-focused sessions in the same way that you can have combat-focused sessions or social-focused sessions and have my group find them exciting enough to post shitty greentexts about them afterward.
>>43042126 If GNS theory did any good in shining light on different creative agendas and inspired people to design games to highlight them, it was an utter fucking fuckup when it claimed that they were mutually exclusive.
My current obsession, the Japanese game Shinobigami, weds an almost entirely player-focused scene building system (basically, once the GM designs the basic outline of a scenario, he has pretty much no input in how the players approach it) with mechanically driven objectives and a beautiful and option-rich combat system that satisfies that itch so so good. To echo OP's wording, I don't think I've ever been more "impressed" with a game, and I hope we see more designers in the future acknowledging that these different elements can coexist in the same game without being "incoherent."
Good art, good organization of rules and fluff, uncomplicated system that lets players do things without rolling bucket-fulls of dice or consulting a table or doing complex math, and maybe a fun premise wedged in there somewhere.
I love the theme, style and setting of TBZ, but I found the combat system a little underwhelming. I love a lot of the concepts, like wounds adding dice or the dead box, but there seemed like a lack of meaningful choice and mechanical interaction during fights.
Dwarf Fortress is a video game designed with the express purpose of establishing a virtual environment with deep rules providing fertile ground for tremendous emergent complexity in both narrative and gameplay.
I want to be able to take a similar focus on emergence to the tabletop.
>>43042516 >>43042452 >>43042344 >>43042097 >>43041903 >>43040663 Thanks for sharing. I got all excited and immediately got sad when I saw it was Monte Cook's "spend 1 point to lower your DC so that you succeed your attempt at not losing 1 point" system. I will say the generic does look a bit better than numenera, though, which isn't saying much because it's what left the salty taste in my mouth.
>>43038138 What impresses me is a system that encourages you to approach the way you think about & play the game in a totally new context.
FATE would be one good example, but the system that exemplifies this most to me is Hillfolk. Even though I've only gotten to run it once, just reading the book seriously changed the way I think about all the games I GM now. That's what I like to see: books that give you inspiring ideas and new perspectives that you can apply to your RPG experience as a whole.
>>43052496 Hillfolk is a game about dramatic storytelling. What it tries to do is take the structure of other dramatic media (television, film, etc.) and translate that onto the tabletop.
The mechanics focus almost exclusively on character interaction, but not in the way that games like Burning Wheel or ASoIaF turn social conflicts into a form of combat. There's no rolling involved, you simply roleplay. But the outcome of any given roleplaying scene awards "Drama Tokens" to the LOSER (the person who doesn't get what they want / gives in to what the other person wants) which can be spent to influence future interactions. At their strongest, Drama Tokens can be used to force another character to make some sort of concession to you in a roleplaying scene—so, if you resist the urge to dig in your heels and not change your mind in early scenes, you get leverage to make things go your way in later scenes that you think are more important to you.
I'm not sure if I've done a very good job explaining it, so I totally encourage you to take a look at the book yourself. The main takeaway is that the structure of the game shifts the focus not just toward having more character interaction, but to thinking about WHY and HOW those interactions play out. The emotions of the characters and the drama that results from those emotions coming into conflict take center stage in a way you don't always see playing other RPGs. It's really damn cool.
For me, it would need to have something that I could point to and say, "Look at this neat thing they do." It doesn't have to be revolutionary or completely new, just at least one thing that really catches my eye.
>Shadowrun - It's Earthdawn but cyberpunk. Don't you wanna play a chromed-up ork?
>4E - It's Final Fantasy Tactics, the RPG
>Don't Rest Your Head - Insomniac superheroes fighting off punny nightmares and exhaustion
On a related note... >What would an RPG sourcebook need to do in order to impress you? Impress your group?
To impress me, I'd want a game that trims the rules down to an absolute minimum without degenerating into pure abstraction. The more mechanics you can squeeze into a similar paradigm so that I don't have to be looking things up, the better, so long a the math behind it is decent.
I'm not a fan of heavy crunch because I think that most things are simply not all that important. What is important is to be giving players interesting choices and encouraging creative play. All a system really needs for this is a way to track relative competence at things, a way to measure odds of success, a way for characters to manipulate those odds, an RNG system for unpredictable outcomes, and player motivation to then act on the results of RNG. This is what keeps it a game and not interactive storytelling.
>>43053418 >What would an RPG sourcebook need to do in order to impress you? Impress your group? I know this is a very vague answer, but I like stuff that inspires me. Fluff that grips me like a typical page-turner novel, crunch that immediately makes me want to go and build a character around it. It's hard for me to say what qualities something has to have to inspire those feelings, though. Stuff that's "novel" (at least for its system) and adds a new kind of dimension to play or to the world, rather than just an arms race of special abilities that obsolete the basic book ones or "our elves are different" fluff.
>>43053905 Nah, that's actually super helpful and reassures me that mine are both in the right direction.
Ultimately, it sounds like you just want something that actually promotes a different experience than what the core ruleset provides for by itself. Instead of just Core Material But Better which a lot of sourcebooks fall into.
Like the Victorian supplements for Vampire and Changeling in WoD, or the Cerulean Seas or DSP's Psionics for Pathfinder.
>>43053706 Dat butt frustration doe. That reason alone is what sold my party on the game, and it's my favorite edition of DnD mostly for that reason.
Mm, maybe. I think Fate has its own fair share of complexity for its own sake. Fate works hard to be a set of rules focused on the narrative. It has a lot of terms and concepts unique to itself, which is neat, but also an extra effort to really pick up and appreciate.
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