RPG Systems and Granularity

Dr. Checkmate, guest blogging over at Uncle Bears, writes: Dr. Checkmate’s Ode to Savage Worlds | UncleBear On a related note, d4 to d12 (or d4-2 to d12+2) doesn’t allow for a whole lot of granularity. You’re basically talking about all traits being on a scale of 1 to 5. Even some how making it […]

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Not Everything Can Be Near

…because where would you put it? In the previous post, I talked about Near and Far thinking in RPGs, and recommended that the GM try to make as much as possible in the game amenable to Near thinking.  As much as possible doesn’t mean everything, though; there are situations where it’s either not possible, or […]

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Near vs. Far Thinking in RPGs

Overcoming Bias: Abstract/Distant Future Bias The latest Science has a psych article saying we think of distant stuff more abstractly, and vice versa.  “The brain is hierarchically organized with higher points in the cortical hierarchy representing increasingly more abstract aspects of stimuli”; activating a region makes nearby activations more likely.  This has stunning implications for […]

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Fluid Combat Rounds Rules

Crunch Fetish Szilard posted an insanely complicated set of D&D 3.0 rules for a less turn-based approach to combat. I can’t imagine actually using those rules (even if they weren’t D&D 3.0 oriented), but it did make me ponder whether there was some way to do the bookkeeping for them that would make it less […]

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In Praise of Randomization

Once is happenstance, twice is coincidence, the third time it’s enemy action. – Ian Fleming Here’s two things about human beings: They are incredibly bad at randomizing They are incredibly good at recognizing patterns The implication of the combination of these facts is that if you’re GMing a game and you think you’re introducing something […]

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Fluffy Crunch and Crunchy Fluff

Matthew Conway recently wrote Fluff and Crunch Are Dead To Me, about how he’s grown to hate the terms, but I see them as getting at something.  To me, anyway, Crunch is all the mechanics of the game: you roll this, and subtract that number from this other thing, if the result is 0 or […]

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