A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2
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  1. - Top - End - #61
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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    I'm not especially familiar with either system, but I think it comes down to what happens when you come up with a character concept first and want to represent it in-game. 4e sees to struggle with that, while 13A seems to handle it fine. On the other hand 13A combat seems to descend into "attack, attack, attack" really easily, where 4e clearly brings in positioning and movement throughout combat (even if its just to reach the fleeing minions during mop up).

    Quote Originally Posted by Quertus View Post
    But 4e? You fail a skill challenge when you accumulate a certain number of failures. So you learn early on in life that nobody wants your help. They don't even want you thinking about their problems. Secrecy is the primary motivator of any functional society. Nobody asks aloud, "why is the sky blue", because, if they did, every motion would think about it, and accumulate enough failures that you were guaranteed to never know the answer.
    ...
    So it's kinda like a spoof on a not entirely anachronistic era, of everyone learning a trade, and masters being highly in demand, often passing along their trade through hereditary lines. Where Bob the Thatcher and his crew ("Can we thatch it? Yes we can!") are the only ones in town who are trained in the secret ninja art of thatching, and no-one else dare try ("Can you thatch it? No you can't!").
    ...
    Adventuring parties (or most any other group endeavor) need to find out whose job it is to do what. In fact, it's likely that, in some areas, there's licensing, and official grading. "Hi, I'm Bob the Thatcher, tier 2 Thatcher and Drunken Master grade handling my liquor. I'll do your thatching and your drinking for you." Or "Sally Archer, Olympic hopeful, and 5-times winner of Witch Weekly's most charming smile award."
    To start, regular old skill checks still exist. Swimming through water, for example, isn't a skill challenge. I suppose you could fail at it so much you drown, but that isn't tied to an exact number of failed checks.

    Second, failing a skill challenge doesn't make a task impossible for everyone:
    Quote Originally Posted by DMG1, page 72
    Example: The PCs seek a temple in dense jungle. Achieving six successes means they find their way. Accruing three failures before achieving the successes, however, indicates that they get themselves hopelessly lost in the wilderness.
    "hopelessly lost in the wilderness" doesn't make it impossible to find the your way out later or apply if anyone else seeks the temple (or why the sky is blue).

    There are also seven examples challenges in later in the section of the DMG1.
    • Three involve getting aid or information from a person, something that's likely to fail if you upset the person rather than on a time limit or based on hit points. Again, nothing stopping a third party unrelated to you from trying again.
    • Three suggest in an additional combat encounter or harder combat encounter on a failure. In practice this means one bad roll can't ruin singlehandedly things for the party. This would apply each time the event takes place.
    • The last one models research, and again moves the act of doing it beyond performing a single roll. In this case, when you've hit all dead ends on your leads, that's your failure state. "hitting a dead end" isn't tied to rounds or hit points though, se you need some other system to model it. And again, just because you failed doesn't mean someone else can't try.


    Bob the Thatcher's job is time based, and there's not really any risk of failure. I suppose it could become a skill challenge if he needs to fix a roof before a storm hits (using failures to measure wasted time before the rain starts), but just doing the job would be a skill check he can repeat indefinitely, and the only failure state is "he wasted time."

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Tanarii View Post
    but I though the underlying assumption was that the world didn't go *ping* and suddenly Bards could wear Chain Shirts.
    I was going to make a crack about OotS #1 but looking it up it seems you may have referenced it intentionally.
    Last edited by Hytheter; 2021-09-10 at 12:24 AM.

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Cluedrew View Post
    To Anonymouswizard: I'm out of time, but I'll try to come back to that.
    That's fair, wasn't overly expecting an answer. I was just continuing the direction. In practice the definition I was using is particularly as useless as yours but illustrated my point of 'is this even s worthwhile question'.

    I'm just waiting until this thread gets diverted to a discussion on of the Epic Attribute and Fate rules in Scion 1e are broken (yes, although Epic Attributes can be solved easily on a couple of ways). Although to be fair, part of the reason I like that game is the fact it doesn't work work (I have a houserules document, and need to add another couple of z Birthrights to it).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zelphas View Post
    So here I am, trapped in my laboratory, trying to create a Mechabeast that's powerful enough to take down the howling horde outside my door, but also won't join them once it realizes what I've done...twentieth time's the charm, right?
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Raziere View Post
    How about a Jovian Uplift stuck in a Case morph? it makes so little sense.

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    If 4E doesn't count as an RPG, then a lot of games popularly known as RPGs don't either.

    My opinion on 4E has varied considerably over time -
    First mentions: "Hell yeah, new edition, bet it'll be awesome."
    More info: "What?! That's not how I thought it would work, this is a pile of suck!"
    Actually played it: "Eh, not so bad, but it's not for me. Nice cosmology though."
    Years later, looking again: "Actually, why did I have a problem with this?"
    I'd still rank it below 3.x in aggregate, but it's got some good stuff in there.

    Some of that is ceasing to care about certain things. Like, when 4E came out, I got aggravated about the non-euclidean geometry (aka fire-cubes), convinced that this would cause all kinds of stupid situations. But it really is substantially faster and hasn't caused any issues, and now I use it in PF1 as well.

    The bigger factor is that rules-light games have taken the crown, and now that's what a lot of people want to play. And so when you end up playing a number of those, you get used to things being loosely defined and putting the heavy lifting on GM/group consensus. And from that angle, 4E's (and 5E's) "crimes" are more like minor parking violations.

    DCs are defined loosely, so your chances are highly dependent on how the GM adjudicates the situation? Yeah, welcome to most TTRPGs people are playing. You can 'trip' an ooze even if that's not literally tripping? Result-based mechanics - like every Fate-system game and a lot of others have.

    So to me, "4E isn't D&D" is like talking about how this tuna sandwich is so different than the turkey sandwich that it shouldn't even be called a sandwich. They're a lot more similar than they are different, and a lot more similar than most games out there.
    Last edited by icefractal; 2021-09-10 at 04:18 AM.

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    I like 4e a lot, and I really didn't like 13th Age when I read it back in the day. I haven't played it, and it's been a long time since I read it, so I don't have a lot of very specific complaints. I didn't like the pseudo-storygame direction of it (pseudo, because it didn't really do much at all to help generate developments as far as I could tell, it just told you to make something up wholesale). The way weapon and armor choice was mainly about how much you adhere to the authors' notion of what the archetype should be using rubbed me the wrong way. There were some interesting expansions in the class mechanics that could be cool on top of something like 4e, which did have a few things that cared about, say, if an attack roll was even or odd, but then it went and stripped out more choices and interesting bits than it added.

    I think the escalation die is interesting and I know very many people talked about importing that to 4e in some form, and as I said, there are class mechanics that would make for good expansions on what 4e already does, but... It just completely dropped the ball on actually making me want to play the system or build characters in it.

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by icefractal View Post
    If 4E doesn't count as an RPG, then a lot of games popularly known as RPGs don't either.
    Yeah, this. For something to not even qualify as an RPG, it would presumably be something that you can't roleplay in. Which quite a few people do in 4e, even if Quertus isn't one of them.
    Last edited by Batcathat; 2021-09-10 at 04:44 AM.

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by sandmote View Post
    I'm not especially familiar with either system, but I think it comes down to what happens when you come up with a character concept first and want to represent it in-game. 4e sees to struggle with that, while 13A seems to handle it fine. On the other hand 13A combat seems to descend into "attack, attack, attack" really easily, where 4e clearly brings in positioning and movement throughout combat (even if its just to reach the fleeing minions during mop up).
    Coming up with a concept first and trying to represent it in-game is a problem in all of D&D. 3.x only manages to alleviate it by piling up enough content to blot out the sun and even then there are some concepts that just won't work. 4E might be worse than other editions about it, though, since it does double down on D&D's general restrictiveness.
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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Morty View Post
    Coming up with a concept first and trying to represent it in-game is a problem in all of D&D. 3.x only manages to alleviate it by piling up enough content to blot out the sun and even then there are some concepts that just won't work. 4E might be worse than other editions about it, though, since it does double down on D&D's general restrictiveness.
    It's a problem in every system, even GURPS and HERO struggle to deal with everything (although I believe both let you build a muffin with standard character generation, so they're very broad). But class based games struggle to build anything outside of their supported archetypes.

    This isn't a problem when the game is fairly up front about the archetypes it supports. I personally think that Dark Heresy did this well, just as an example. But D&D pretends to be significantly more broad than it actually is (which is reasonably broad once you know what it supports). Yes each supplement adds more options, but I've discovered that a good general rule of thumb in a system is to shine that nobody in the group owns any particular supplement (and that most won't own the core book).

    At the end of the day there's nothing wrong with a game not supporting a concept. Unknown Armies very much does not support cool disinterested characters and it's one of my favourite games.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zelphas View Post
    So here I am, trapped in my laboratory, trying to create a Mechabeast that's powerful enough to take down the howling horde outside my door, but also won't join them once it realizes what I've done...twentieth time's the charm, right?
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Raziere View Post
    How about a Jovian Uplift stuck in a Case morph? it makes so little sense.

  9. - Top - End - #69
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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Batcathat View Post
    Yeah, this. For something to not even qualify as an RPG, it would presumably be something that you can't roleplay in. Which quite a few people do in 4e, even if Quertus isn't one of them.
    But you can roleplay in anything. If you really wanted to, you could get super in to a game of Monopoly or Clue or Risk and make decisions based on roleplaying, and I think everyone here would agree those are boardgames. People roleplay in MMOs or single-player story-driven games like Mass Effect, and while those are RPGs, I think we can again all agree that they are a different kind of RPG from D&D or Shadowrun or 13th Age.

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by RandomPeasant View Post
    But you can roleplay in anything. If you really wanted to, you could get super in to a game of Monopoly or Clue or Risk and make decisions based on roleplaying, and I think everyone here would agree those are boardgames. People roleplay in MMOs or single-player story-driven games like Mass Effect, and while those are RPGs, I think we can again all agree that they are a different kind of RPG from D&D or Shadowrun or 13th Age.
    Fair enough, though I'm still curious what sort of definition of RPG that would include most editions of D&D, other games we typically consider RPGs (unless there are more games Quertus disqualifies from being RPGs) but specifically not 4e.

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Tanarii View Post
    IMO what's missing in those cases is large open ended but not unconstrained ability to make decisions about what to do, at least in a strategic sense. Not input in terms of story/fluff/flavor/narrative.
    You know what, drop the what the open ended decisions are about, I mean maybe we could slice it up differently and rate how much different decisions matter in different contexts, but really I think its just the fact that various important decisions are open ended in the game has some way to accommodate that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Anonymouswizard View Post
    Oh, any proper definition will probably go on for pages. But I suppose a simplified definition could serve I for now. For the moment:
    OK, well I have slightly different definitions of both role-playing and games, but the really important point I feel is there is some stuff that isn't in the title that is important. "I enjoy first person shooters." "You mean like Portal?"*

    For instance I do not call free-form role-playing a role-playing game, even though it is a game in which you do role-playing. They do have rules, just not about what a character can do. So I think another important part of a role-playing game is the passing back and forth of control between players and the mechanics. Not entirely sure how to define that but it is definitely there. And it is definitely different from the rules of a free-form role-playing game where the limits are basically don't step on each others toes.

    * Just in case, Portal is a game played in first person mode where your primary method of interacting with the world is a gun.

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Cluedrew View Post
    For instance I do not call free-form role-playing a role-playing game, even though it is a game in which you do role-playing. They do have rules, just not about what a character can do. So I think another important part of a role-playing game is the passing back and forth of control between players and the mechanics. Not entirely sure how to define that but it is definitely there. And it is definitely different from the rules of a free-form role-playing game where the limits are basically don't step on each others toes.
    So where would you place a game like Risus or other similar very rules light games? On one hand, they do have rules for what a character can do but the amount and complexity of the rules seems a lot closer to a free-form game than something like D&D. (If you're not familiar, the rules for Risus are like two pages long in total).

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Tanarii View Post
    Also, and I'm not sure on this, doesn't FR get retconned so it's always worked on the latest edition rules when the change occurs. The almost planetary disasters make for convenient breaks, but I though the underlying assumption was that the world didn't go *ping* and suddenly Bards could wear Chain Shirts.
    "Minor" mechanical changes such as "how good are fighters with all weapons to ever exist", "is it possible to wear armor and cast spells" or "feats are a thing" are indeed not reflected in-universe. It's not so much as a retcon of the fiction as simply something that gets modelled differently in the newer editions.

    Changes to magic, though? Those are 100% canon, with cataclysmic events usually involving Mystra dying heralding such changes and new rules getting set in. The Time of Troubles, with Mystra dying and Midnight ascending to her role, brought in the changes between AD&D and 3.x magic, and the Spellplague (again, involving Mystra dying) led to 4e, where magic as previously known stopped working. Finally, the Second Sundering and Mystra's resurrection by way of her favorite boytoy led us to D&D 5e and magic working more similarly to before but still different.

    I predict next edition will see Mystra dying again. Crazy, I know.

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Batcathat View Post
    Fair enough, though I'm still curious what sort of definition of RPG that would include most editions of D&D, other games we typically consider RPGs (unless there are more games Quertus disqualifies from being RPGs) but specifically not 4e.
    Although I don't subscribe to the "not an RPG" claim, if you put 3rd ed D&D (which we would all agree is a roleplay game) on one table, Wrath of Ashardalon (which we would all agree was a board game) on another and told to put 4th ed D&D with which one it is most similar to, there would definitely be a significant number of people that would put it with WoA, and not be doing so just out of spite. Now, it is a little mean to call 4th ed a board game (for one, it doesn't come with a board, so fails the first test), but it definitely rides that line, and I can see why for some, it trips over it.

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Anonymouswizard View Post
    It's a problem in every system, even GURPS and HERO struggle to deal with everything (although I believe both let you build a muffin with standard character generation, so they're very broad). But class based games struggle to build anything outside of their supported archetypes.

    This isn't a problem when the game is fairly up front about the archetypes it supports. I personally think that Dark Heresy did this well, just as an example. But D&D pretends to be significantly more broad than it actually is (which is reasonably broad once you know what it supports). Yes each supplement adds more options, but I've discovered that a good general rule of thumb in a system is to shine that nobody in the group owns any particular supplement (and that most won't own the core book).

    At the end of the day there's nothing wrong with a game not supporting a concept. Unknown Armies very much does not support cool disinterested characters and it's one of my favourite games.
    Obviously, no system covers every possible concept. But D&D is much narrower than most and 4E is in some ways particularly bad about it. Also, D&D doesn't support concepts that it really has no reason not to support. Like, I'm not going to expect it to let me play a diplomat with no combat skills to speak of or an engineer/inventor (though the latter has received support in some third-party material) but a ranger who fights in melee without dual-wielding or a rogue whose preferred weapon is an axe or bow really aren't too out there. And yet, 4E shut these down entirely (other editions also don't have a great track record here).
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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Cluedrew View Post
    OK, well I have slightly different definitions of both role-playing and games, but the really important point I feel is there is some stuff that isn't in the title that is important. "I enjoy first person shooters." "You mean like Portal?"*

    For instance I do not call free-form role-playing a role-playing game, even though it is a game in which you do role-playing. They do have rules, just not about what a character can do. So I think another important part of a role-playing game is the passing back and forth of control between players and the mechanics. Not entirely sure how to define that but it is definitely there. And it is definitely different from the rules of a free-form role-playing game where the limits are basically don't step on each others toes.

    * Just in case, Portal is a game played in first person mode where your primary method of interacting with the world is a gun.
    To be fair it's not the definitions I use in real life. I was just trying to get something workable because I didn't have the free time to be more precise and wanted to make the point.

    Quote Originally Posted by Morty View Post
    Obviously, no system covers every possible concept. But D&D is much narrower than most and 4E is in some ways particularly bad about it. Also, D&D doesn't support concepts that it really has no reason not to support. Like, I'm not going to expect it to let me play a diplomat with no combat skills to speak of or an engineer/inventor (though the latter has received support in some third-party material) but a ranger who fights in melee without dual-wielding or a rogue whose preferred weapon is an axe or bow really aren't too out there. And yet, 4E shut these down entirely (other editions also don't have a great track record here).
    Honestly, I was disappointed at his damage works in 13th Age. I had hoped that it would be used to allow characters to use whatever weapons they want, but instead it punishes Fighters for not using heavy weapons and Rights for not using small ones. There's really no reason beyond thematics for it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zelphas View Post
    So here I am, trapped in my laboratory, trying to create a Mechabeast that's powerful enough to take down the howling horde outside my door, but also won't join them once it realizes what I've done...twentieth time's the charm, right?
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Raziere View Post
    How about a Jovian Uplift stuck in a Case morph? it makes so little sense.

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Cluedrew View Post
    You know what, drop the what the open ended decisions are about, I mean maybe we could slice it up differently and rate how much different decisions matter in different contexts, but really I think its just the fact that various important decisions are open ended in the game has some way to accommodate that.
    It's an important distinction. If the decisions aren't about what the players character(a) is/are doing and is instead about story that characters are in, that's a storytelling game, not a roleplaying game.

    Quote Originally Posted by icefractal View Post
    If 4E doesn't count as an RPG, then a lot of games popularly known as RPGs don't either.
    Clearly Fate and Powered by the Apocalypse aren't RPGs because they don't have real mechanics. Plenty of roleplaying and storytelling, but they're not really Games.

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Anonymouswizard View Post
    Honestly, I was disappointed at his damage works in 13th Age. I had hoped that it would be used to allow characters to use whatever weapons they want, but instead it punishes Fighters for not using heavy weapons and Rights for not using small ones. There's really no reason beyond thematics for it.
    I appreciate class-based damage on principle because gods know equipment in D&D and many other fantasy games is an illusion of choice and half-baked attempts at realism. But I did get the feeling that in practice it pushes some classes towards some weapons anyway. I'd have to check again.
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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Morty View Post
    I appreciate class-based damage on principle because gods know equipment in D&D and many other fantasy games is an illusion of choice and half-baked attempts at realism. But I did get the feeling that in practice it pushes some classes towards some weapons anyway. I'd have to check again.
    The older I get the more I feel like weapons should be fluff. How often does it actually matter of I'm using a sword, a spear, or a frying pan. Give situational advantage or disadvantage for having a suitable weapon and then let people just do whatever reasonable damage for their class and/or skill is (maybe make damage a stat you can buy up in point buy systems).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zelphas View Post
    So here I am, trapped in my laboratory, trying to create a Mechabeast that's powerful enough to take down the howling horde outside my door, but also won't join them once it realizes what I've done...twentieth time's the charm, right?
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Raziere View Post
    How about a Jovian Uplift stuck in a Case morph? it makes so little sense.

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Morty View Post
    I appreciate class-based damage on principle because gods know equipment in D&D and many other fantasy games is an illusion of choice and half-baked attempts at realism. But I did get the feeling that in practice it pushes some classes towards some weapons anyway. I'd have to check again.
    Its one thing I have warmed to over the years with WFRP - initially, when I saw all one-handed weapons were just lumped in under 'Hand Weapon' I was appalled, but in recent years, I really grinds my gears that D&D (for example) chooses to spite people over their choice of bludgeoning weapon (historically it used to be warhammer weilders who got shafted compared to mace weilders, but in 5th oddly its now the other way around). Take out the names and make people select the ability packages, if a Rogue wants to use a light, finesse axe instead of a shortsword, why not?

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    @Quertus:

    While I agree with your conclusion, and find your story an enjoyable read, I think you would probably get similarly silly scenarios if you aplied the same “rules as physics” standard to most any game, RPG or not.
    Looking for feedback on Heart of Darkness, a character driven RPG of Gothic fantasy.

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Tanarii View Post
    It's an important distinction. If the decisions aren't about what the players character(a) is/are doing and is instead about story that characters are in, that's a storytelling game, not a roleplaying game.

    Clearly Fate and Powered by the Apocalypse aren't RPGs because they don't have real mechanics. Plenty of roleplaying and storytelling, but they're not really Games.
    Was blue text really needed there?
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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Eh, I was reading Agon earlier, there you're not allowed to determine what you do until you've rules your dice (partially so you know if you should narrate success or failure). I actually like it's design, but it'll probably pull some people out of the game.

    Now it doesn't remove role-playing, but when outcomes are uncertain it resolves then first before asking you to do any in depth RP.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zelphas View Post
    So here I am, trapped in my laboratory, trying to create a Mechabeast that's powerful enough to take down the howling horde outside my door, but also won't join them once it realizes what I've done...twentieth time's the charm, right?
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Raziere View Post
    How about a Jovian Uplift stuck in a Case morph? it makes so little sense.

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    I mean, when the outcomes are uncertain you always have to resolve before you can narrate the results portion of the attempted actions.

    Are you say you don't even decide among possible actions before rolling dice to see if any kind of action can succeed, or just that the actions are decided as more broad categories of activity and you narrate specific actions depending the the resolution?

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Tanarii View Post
    I mean, when the outcomes are uncertain you always have to resolve before you can narrate the results portion of the attempted actions.

    Are you say you don't even decide among possible actions before rolling dice to see if any kind of action can succeed, or just that the actions are decided as more broad categories of activity and you narrate specific actions depending the the resolution?
    The latter. You roll a dice pool including a fire from s broad category of action (like Arts and Culture) and then describe if you try to calm the monster down or distract them with sculpture when you know if you succeed.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zelphas View Post
    So here I am, trapped in my laboratory, trying to create a Mechabeast that's powerful enough to take down the howling horde outside my door, but also won't join them once it realizes what I've done...twentieth time's the charm, right?
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Raziere View Post
    How about a Jovian Uplift stuck in a Case morph? it makes so little sense.

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Anonymouswizard View Post
    The older I get the more I feel like weapons should be fluff. How often does it actually matter of I'm using a sword, a spear, or a frying pan. Give situational advantage or disadvantage for having a suitable weapon and then let people just do whatever reasonable damage for their class and/or skill is (maybe make damage a stat you can buy up in point buy systems).
    I'm increasingly leaning towards this opinion. If a game isn't willing to go the distance and give me a robust selection of weapons - and most aren't - then just let me use whatever, however and whenever.

    Quote Originally Posted by Glorthindel View Post
    Its one thing I have warmed to over the years with WFRP - initially, when I saw all one-handed weapons were just lumped in under 'Hand Weapon' I was appalled, but in recent years, I really grinds my gears that D&D (for example) chooses to spite people over their choice of bludgeoning weapon (historically it used to be warhammer weilders who got shafted compared to mace weilders, but in 5th oddly its now the other way around). Take out the names and make people select the ability packages, if a Rogue wants to use a light, finesse axe instead of a shortsword, why not?
    WFRP is, however, pretty inconsistent about it. It does lump many weapons into the "hand weapon" category, but then it splits some of them away seemingly at random, like rapiers, flails or spears.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anonymouswizard View Post
    The latter. You roll a dice pool including a fire from s broad category of action (like Arts and Culture) and then describe if you try to calm the monster down or distract them with sculpture when you know if you succeed.
    There are people that play D&D that way, as far back as Thief skills, but more so since 3e skills. Also true in warhammer and palladium system back in the day. So it's nothing new to roleplaying.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Talakeal View Post
    I think you would probably get similarly silly scenarios if you aplied the same “rules as physics” standard to most any game, RPG or not.
    I don't just think, I know that this is the case. Doing it in 3e (Quertus's standard here) makes the universe fall apart entirely--it's entirely not consistent.

    No set of playable rules will be sufficient or even well-adapted as physical laws. And vice versa. No viable set of physical laws will ever be well-suited for a game. That's because they're operating at two completely different layers and don't even address the same questions.

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    And the whole idea that rules and physical laws are the same betrays a complete lack of understanding of the nature of physical law. Rules are legalistic statements (XYZ is permissible, ABC is not), while physical laws are statements of observed reality (under ABC conditions, when XYZ happens, X'Y'Z' are observed). You can break the rules ("that's cheating" is a meaningful statement); you cannot break physical law--the statement is in and of itself nonsense. Instead, you can disprove physical laws by showing that under ABC conditions, when XYZ happens, something other than X'Y'Z' are observed. That means that what you thought was physical law wasn't, and instead the physical laws are different. That's a meaningless statement about game rules.

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Morty View Post
    Coming up with a concept first and trying to represent it in-game is a problem in all of D&D. 3.x only manages to alleviate it by piling up enough content to blot out the sun and even then there are some concepts that just won't work. 4E might be worse than other editions about it, though, since it does double down on D&D's general restrictiveness.
    I'm not sure my idea of "concept" was clear, as I have very little of a problem in 5e, and not much in 4e or 2e. Or maybe I'm just not creative. Since 13A feels closer to 5e on that front (even when keeping a lot of 4e-isms) I figure that might cause some of the discrepancy.

    13A's Class Talents help a lot and the feats seems fairly flexible as well. I might not be able to get mechanical backing for every ability, but there's usually a class that can fully focus on the basic combat idea (beastmaster, or using a spear for area denial, or specializing in a particular type of spell) and still tie on a good variety of other aspects of how I want the character to work (being good at pulling a scam or being wise or being a meathead) independently. 4e is a little worse at this, partially because this is tied much closer to class and so combat focused. Plus more of the feats and powers just make numbers go up; I need a few levels before the build starts reflecting multiple aspects of what I want the Character to be good/bad at.

    I also don't play very often at very high levels, so I prefer both systems to 3.X. While that system handles spellcasting fine, the ways it handles feats, class features, and skill ranks usually forces me to wait for a prestige class before I can get mechanical backing for most concepts. Pathfinder's Archetypes and Traits systems are a big improvement on that (as is the way it handles skill points).


    Focusing back on 4e vs 13A, I think its that initial fist impression I described that sets up the difference in feel, and the ability of Champion/Epic material and Paragon/Epic Destinies Material is less important. I also suspect many people were comparing the early levels of 4e to Epic level 3.X, where 4e swaps out more things and 3.X stacks more on top. I think 13A handles "you get more as you level instead of replacing things" a lot better than 4e.

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    Default Re: 13th Age vs 4th Edition

    Quote Originally Posted by Morty View Post
    I'm increasingly leaning towards this opinion. If a game isn't willing to go the distance and give me a robust selection of weapons - and most aren't - then just let me use whatever, however and whenever.
    Honestly to me the ideal would be dropping them entirely followed by a 'build a weapon' system with a good list of examples. Witch reminds me, I now need to go back to my fantasy RPG and rework both damage and protection.

    An idea I had was for characters in a D&D like game to have a class based weapon die, of they used a shield it drops one step but you gain +2 AC, if you're using a second weapon it drops two steps and take a penalty on your attack but roll two dice for damage. A game which I should probably write.

    So Fighters might have a d10 weapon die, and Wizards might have a d6.weapon die.

    I might also extend the idea to spells, but I'm also considering a spell pool. You have a bunch of d6s you can invest in spells witch determine their randomised elements. Powerful spells would turn give a negative modifier.

    WFRP is, however, pretty inconsistent about it. It does lump many weapons into the "hand weapon" category, but then it splits some of them away seemingly at random, like rapiers, flails or spears.
    I believe it's mostly legacy, if it got special rules in the wargame it gets a new category in the RPG, although some don't fall into that category.

    The one that's definitely legacy is spears. Them being special in the wargame made perfect sense, here the times where their length is an advantage or disadvantage is best left up to the group and GM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zelphas View Post
    So here I am, trapped in my laboratory, trying to create a Mechabeast that's powerful enough to take down the howling horde outside my door, but also won't join them once it realizes what I've done...twentieth time's the charm, right?
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Raziere View Post
    How about a Jovian Uplift stuck in a Case morph? it makes so little sense.

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