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Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #900 on: January 21, 2014, 03:04:51 PM »
I see what you mean, but it doesn't solve the problem of what happens if i only get six players and five of them are on one side with one on the other... lol!

My mane problem with doing a PvP Freeform sandbox is that I've tried them before and they didn't work - not because there was no system, not because the players didn't play fair - quite honestly, if a player isn't going to play by the rules in a completely freeform game, they aren'y using the technique you describe. It's a useful technique for defining characers but it doesn't help when you only have three players on each side.

I've seen this so often here on E: someone comes up with a great setting, and a great story for it. hey then divide the interested players in two by allowing some on each side. They then have half the players drop out as per usual when the game starts because some people just enjoy making characters but don't actually like roleplaying...

And they are inevitably left with what amounts to two or three separate one-on-one sex scenes that end and everyone drops out!



Anyway... That is kind of an aside and a bit of a rant. Sorry...

What I really waned to know was, do you think it would work? Can it be made to work?

What do people think of the setting, and what would work best: Sand box or MacGuffin Hunt?

If I were to get 30 or so players, then I could make it a rugby match with 15 a side. If I get three, I'll do the original three-way with an extra player...

Chances are I'll get six or seven people interested, which isn't enough to have half on one side half on the other.

Offline greenknight

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Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #901 on: January 22, 2014, 06:49:40 AM »
Setting: my sense of verisimilitude won't accept GB as the one world government. I would definitely consider multiple, some what equal, factions better. For flavor if nothing else, you might want to check out your own (as in, a UK design house) Dystopian Wars setting. It's World War Steam set in the late 1870's. US/GB/Prussia/Japan/Antarctica/France as the major factions with the full spectrum of stuff and Russian, Swedish, et al as minor factions that can ally with the big boys and fill specialized roles.

The point is, it's Victorian steam punk warfare with multiple factions and it's "A Way" to do it or consider as a jumping off point for a two hundred year timeline extrapolation.

System: it doesn't matter really, as long as your dice (ie, random resolution) mechanic is supported by the site. I like your reasons for a system. McGuffin hunts are always a way to focus players on a common goal. And, of course, the secret to a good sandbox is to lay down enough tracks that you can't see the ground underneath.

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #902 on: January 22, 2014, 07:39:08 AM »
Setting: my sense of verisimilitude won't accept GB as the one world government. I would definitely consider multiple, some what equal, factions better. For flavor if nothing else, you might want to check out your own (as in, a UK design house) Dystopian Wars setting. It's World War Steam set in the late 1870's. US/GB/Prussia/Japan/Antarctica/France as the major factions with the full spectrum of stuff and Russian, Swedish, et al as minor factions that can ally with the big boys and fill specialized roles.

The point is, it's Victorian steam punk warfare with multiple factions and it's "A Way" to do it or consider as a jumping off point for a two hundred year timeline extrapolation.

Multiple factions is a big no to me. If this were a board game, then yes great, lets have ten factions, one player per faction, making alliances and battling things out... But it's not board game, it's a text based role-play. And my idea is not to have multiple factions battling each other for supremacy.... That is a totally different idea, which you are more than welcome to run with as your own idea!

The justification for London being the world capital is simply that until the first world war, London was the de facto world capital. Britannia Ruled The Waves. We had the biggest and best navy in the world, the British Empire had territory on every continent, the London Stock Exchange was the financial hub of world trade. It was only after WWI that things began to go down hill for Britain, and WWII was the death knell of the Empire, because as a condition for US assistance in Europe, Churchill agreed to give independence to all UK colonies that were capable of self governance.

However, in my alternate time-line neither world war happened - at least, not in that way. Britain and France intervened in the US civil war, meaning the South gained independence and became an ally of Britain against the North. British technology advanced in secret well beyond her neighbours, and so by the time France and Prussia realised that Britain was suddenly the evil empire, it was too late. The less technologically advanced countries in the world fell quickly. The more advanced fought hard but also lost.

And there you have it. Basically a world ruled by Britain.

Just think of it as being the end result of the game you mentioned, where the player playing the British happened to be a better player than all the others, and won the game...!

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System: it doesn't matter really, as long as your dice (ie, random resolution) mechanic is supported by the site. I like your reasons for a system. McGuffin hunts are always a way to focus players on a common goal. And, of course, the secret to a good sandbox is to lay down enough tracks that you can't see the ground underneath.

I really don't do systems! I'm sorry I even mentioned the possibility of doing it using a system, because that seems to be what people are locking on to.

What I want to know is do people think it can work as a freeform game, and which would work best: Sandbox or MacGuffin hunt?

In fact, my co-gm and I have come up with an interesting possible plot, based loosely on the original two-person idea, that might work. We are thrashing out the details...

Offline Thufir Hawat

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #903 on: January 22, 2014, 03:14:10 PM »
I really don't do systems! I'm sorry I even mentioned the possibility of doing it using a system, because that seems to be what people are locking on to.

What I want to know is do people think it can work as a freeform game, and which would work best: Sandbox or MacGuffin hunt?

In fact, my co-gm and I have come up with an interesting possible plot, based loosely on the original two-person idea, that might work. We are thrashing out the details...
FWIW, your initial post left me wondering whether you want system advice or not, too :P.

And of course it can work in freeform. Just tell the players to withold picking a side, because you want a roughly equal split, then let them hash it out, and you have an equal split!
You should in the meantime monitor the thread for potential problem players, which a discussion and having to compromise often reveals.

That's because McGuffin hunts bore me. If you don't mind them, it would likely be the easiest format to GM for, whether freeform or use the heaviest system ever devised ;D!

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #904 on: January 22, 2014, 04:42:25 PM »
FWIW, your initial post left me wondering whether you want system advice or not, too :P.

Well, I have just gone through my original post and highlighted all the bits that make it clear that I don't do system games! Hopefully that should remove the confusion!

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And of course it can work in freeform. Just tell the players to withold picking a side, because you want a roughly equal split, then let them hash it out, and you have an equal split!

And if I get 5 players interested, I simply ask the two most creative ones to do the original 3-way idea with me... lol!

My main issue with that sort of game is that if the players on one side all drop out, it ends up being totally one-sided. And there is another issue here.... The rebels are lightly armed, unarmoured and relying mostly on stealth. They are up against a vast, well equipped, heavily armed, heavily armoured enemy with all the technology on their side. Who do you think is going to win?

The idea I had is to try and make this fun for everyone (including me) by basically having the rebels fight against impossible odds, get slaughtered and still win the occasional moral victory, while what i do is throw vast waves of battle-armoured NPC troops at them.

The general idea then is that rather than standing up and fighting, they have to think!

Doing it as a faction vv faction thing when the sides are so hopelessly mismatched is going to be unplayable, because both sides are going to get bored. Either it will be a total white wash and the rebels will be massacred, or the Empire will be wandering around unable to actually do anything while the rebels sit in their secret hide out plotting stuff...

This is why I intend to control the empire myself and have any co-GMs help out, with one additional Co-GM as the rebel leader.

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You should in the meantime monitor the thread for potential problem players, which a discussion and having to compromise often reveals.

LOL, I have my ways of spotting them, but yes... any additional tips on that regard would be appreciated.

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That's because McGuffin hunts bore me. If you don't mind them, it would likely be the easiest format to GM for, whether freeform or use the heaviest system ever devised ;D!

Maybe you just never found the right one? lol!



Okay, just to make the point, here are sats, using Ember's rough system, for a typical rebel and a typical empire soldier:

StatisticRebelEmpire
Fire power510
Armour110
Speed310
Agility105
Range510
Stamina48
Stealth71
Close Combat28


Offline Thufir Hawat

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #905 on: January 23, 2014, 04:45:51 PM »
Well, I have just gone through my original post and highlighted all the bits that make it clear that I don't do system games! Hopefully that should remove the confusion!
I guess it would.

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And if I get 5 players interested, I simply ask the two most creative ones to do the original 3-way idea with me... lol!
That works as well ;D!

Either way, that was how I'd do it. Feel free to use the idea, or discard it. I certainly wouldn't mind either.
The rest of my replies are in spoilerblock, because they don't change the point. I just didn't want to leave your reply unaddressed.
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My main issue with that sort of game is that if the players on one side all drop out, it ends up being totally one-sided.
Yes, but why would that be more or less likely than all players in a smaller McGuffin-chasing group dropping out?
Your call, anyway.

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And there is another issue here.... The rebels are lightly armed, unarmoured and relying mostly on stealth. They are up against a vast, well equipped, heavily armed, heavily armoured enemy with all the technology on their side. Who do you think is going to win?
It would be a blood bath for both sides.
On the battlefield, that'd be easy. But we're talking rebels here, not regular forces.
During a rebellion, there's no obvious battlefield. Look at guerilla wars for reasons why I think both sides would have a bloodbath to deal with.

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The idea I had is to try and make this fun for everyone (including me) by basically having the rebels fight against impossible odds, get slaughtered and still win the occasional moral victory, while what i do is throw vast waves of battle-armoured NPC troops at them.
Well, guess that works as well.
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The general idea then is that rather than standing up and fighting, they have to think!
Of course. And the modern world has largely done the thinking for them.

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Doing it as a faction vv faction thing when the sides are so hopelessly mismatched is going to be unplayable, because both sides are going to get bored. Either it will be a total white wash and the rebels will be massacred, or the Empire will be wandering around unable to actually do anything while the rebels sit in their secret hide out plotting stuff...
The factions are unbalanced, eh :P?

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Maybe you just never found the right one? lol!
Possible, but if I didn't find the right one in 15 years, it's likely the "right" ones are simply more work to find than the game is worth.

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Okay, just to make the point, here are sats, using Ember's rough system, for a typical rebel and a typical empire soldier:

StatisticRebelEmpire
Fire power510
Armour110
Speed310
Agility105
Range510
Stamina48
Stealth71
Close Combat28
And that simply doesn't mean all that much. Any regular army can smash a rebellion of unprofessional soldiers with roughly the same overwhelming advantage that is here. Yet rebellions are known to have succeeded.

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #906 on: January 23, 2014, 05:56:51 PM »
Either way, that was how I'd do it. Feel free to use the idea, or discard it. I certainly wouldn't mind either.

To be perfectly honest, the reason I asked was to cement in my own mind the fact ha it could be done. You know how you ask a question, and before they can answer, you answer it yourself and say "Thanks for the help" and they are left blinking at you and saying "huh?"

This is something like that... I do apreciate the helpful input. Actually even Greenknight's comment was helpful in so far as it gave me the historical justification I needed!

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The rest of my replies are in spoilerblock, because they don't change the point. I just didn't want to leave your reply unaddressed.

Not a problem oh purple lipped one! I shall endeavor to reply as such!

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Yes, but why would that be more or less likely than all players in a smaller McGuffin-chasing group dropping out?
Your call, anyway.

The difference between all of one side dropping out when there are two sides and all of one side dropping ou when there is only one side? Mathematics, dear mentat! 1-1=0 2-1=1. If all of one side drop out the other side still want to play, but the game is dead because they have no-one to play against. If everyone drops out, the game was obviously not going to work anyway!

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It would be a blood bath for both sides.
On the battlefield, that'd be easy. But we're talking rebels here, not regular forces.
During a rebellion, there's no obvious battlefield. Look at guerilla wars for reasons why I think both sides would have a bloodbath to deal with.


Exactly. A Guerilla war. In a guerilla war, the regular troops are basically on guard duty, which is boring as fuck. The Guerillas have the initiative, strike hard and fast and fade away. They don't hit the targets where the enemy troops are. They hit soft targets nearby to draw the troops away from what they are defending, then they hit the real target.

So, no bloodbath amongst the troops on either side. The people who suffer are the civilians, caught in the bomb blast, or rounded up and shot in retaliation....

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Well, guess that works as well.Of course. And the modern world has largely done the thinking for them.

Which is sad but true... But if the players can think about their posts, they might actually win...

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The factions are unbalanced, eh :P?

In firepower, size, armour, mobility.

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Possible, but if I didn't find the right one in 15 years, it's likely the "right" ones are simply more work to find than the game is worth.

Fair enough. I shan't ask you to co-gm then... *snigger*

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And that simply doesn't mean all that much. Any regular army can smash a rebellion of unprofessional soldiers with roughly the same overwhelming advantage that is here. Yet rebellions are known to have succeeded

Rebellions are known to nhave succeeded when the rebels have received outside help, or have been assisted by deserters from the regular army. Lybia was assisted by US air power. The American Revolution was aided by the French and by the impossibly long British supply line.

The French revolution succeeded because the French Troops were hopelessly outnumbered by the hatchet wielding civilians, had single shot muskets that could fire a maximum (in the hands of a British infantryman) or one round every 20 seconds, and they didn't want to fire on their own people, plus there were army units that deserted to the rebels. The Russian revolution succeeded because the army was away fighting the Germans and loosing. Name me a rebellion that has succeeded and i will give you the reason why.

There are far more that have been crushed mercilessly, and it is only the big ones that we hear about. Chechnya, for example. The Kurd & Sunni uprisings in Iraq. The Hungarian uprising of 1956. the 1904 Russian uprising, the 1936-39 Palistinian uprising. The Jewish revolt of 0060-70.

Oh I forgot on those stats... support: Rebels 0, Empire infinte. Supplies: Rebels 4, Empire infinite, Numbers: Rebels c6,000, Empire c50,000,000
 

Seriously, I do appreciate this discussion, because it is helping me cement the ideas I need in my head. Every objection raised is one I can think about and come up with a solution to, so please, keep throwing them at me!

Offline Ember Star

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #907 on: January 23, 2014, 07:38:11 PM »
I see what you're saying and compare it to this. I once had a original super hero group where the "bad guys" where a government agency called the MTF (mutant task force) where hunting the the mutants. The mutants were basically a underground rebellion led my my character who was a super genius hacker who was once was experimented on by the MTF but escaped. The MTF had tanks, super anti mutant technology, trained solders and mutants. The mutants had their powers and my character's skill with technology. The MTF however was completely NPCd by me and the other GMs. it worked out well and kept people interested.

Online skyre

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Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #908 on: January 24, 2014, 02:48:29 AM »
Right, I've had a chance to absorb everyone's advice and have a think. Thank you to everyone who helped me, I really appreciate I and you gave me a lot of information that I hadn't even thought about, but now definitely am.
I think I'm going to rework my original idea, as was very astutely pointed out that my initial idea will only appeal to players interested in a pirate story. My current thought is to shift the focus somewhat to hopefully broaden the appeal.
I will definitely make interest check thread and I think I'll stick to threads rather than a wiki. It will be easier for me to manage.
I did find the set of rules you suggested Thufir and they would be perfect for what I was thinking of doing, but I've now decided not to just move the goalposts, but build a basketball court, to use a slightly tortured metaphor.
I think I might also try to get a role as a co-gm as well, that might be useful experience.

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #909 on: January 24, 2014, 07:23:44 AM »
I see what you're saying and compare it to this. I once had a original super hero group where the "bad guys" where a government agency called the MTF (mutant task force) where hunting the the mutants. The mutants were basically a underground rebellion led my my character who was a super genius hacker who was once was experimented on by the MTF but escaped. The MTF had tanks, super anti mutant technology, trained solders and mutants. The mutants had their powers and my character's skill with technology. The MTF however was completely NPCd by me and the other GMs. it worked out well and kept people interested.

Sounds fun, pity I missed it! Sort-of based on "Heroes" and X-Men?

Okay, so far things are looking promising. My co-GM is working on a world map, we're discussing the political and economic system that keeps the Empire in power, we have a scenario or two in the pipeline, which one we use will depend on how many players we ultimately get. Get enough and we might just run two scenarios side by side... I am going to work on the technology next....

Oh and this.....:

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The rebels are lightly armed, unarmoured and relying mostly on stealth. They are up against a vast, well equipped, heavily armed, heavily armoured enemy with all the technology on their side. Who do you think is going to win?

I read that in my earlier post just now and laughed.

It's a trope, isn't it? The answer has got to be, "The rebels, obviously!"

Online skyre

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Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #910 on: January 24, 2014, 07:55:59 AM »
Chrystal, you might want to turn your thought about what keeps the empire in existence of its head. Empires tend to be self sustaining until something internal or external causes them to collapse or undergo a period of change. At least that's my historians perspective on them.
That statement was made on the assumption you intend your bad guys to ultimately fail and their Empire to fall.

Also empires tend to be an expression of the society that creates them, so that's also something you might want to consider. That is what is the reason for your Empire to exist in the first place? Might help set the tone for your bad guys.

I know I'm not a GM or anything, but I'm trying to be useful. :)

Offline Ember Star

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #911 on: January 24, 2014, 09:15:31 AM »
Sounds fun, pity I missed it! Sort-of based on "Heroes" and X-Men?
Sort of. A little more dark than eight one, though. With elements of Dark Angel too, mainly with the fact that the experiments done on my character were to infuse cat DNA into her.

I had the group before I came to E

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #912 on: January 24, 2014, 10:33:49 AM »
Chrystal, you might want to turn your thought about what keeps the empire in existence of its head. Empires tend to be self sustaining until something internal or external causes them to collapse or undergo a period of change. At least that's my historians perspective on them.
That statement was made on the assumption you intend your bad guys to ultimately fail and their Empire to fall.

Also empires tend to be an expression of the society that creates them, so that's also something you might want to consider. That is what is the reason for your Empire to exist in the first place? Might help set the tone for your bad guys.

I know I'm not a GM or anything, but I'm trying to be useful. :)

Actually, we have the political and economic structure pretty much defined. A "democracy" that is a cross between the UK and US systems but taken to the extreme, where parliament is elected by big business rather than the proletariat. Each MP is therefore representing the interests of a multinational corporation and the shareholders there-of rather than the ordinary people.

There is no Labour party, in fact Karl Marx was executed for Sedition prior to ever publishing Das Kapital.

The British Empire was founded on economics and capitalism. This was actually my Co-GM Oberon's idea, that British owned corporations like the East India Company grew more powerful due to the advances in technology and the early industrial and IT revolutions.

The greater wealth brought into the companies by the technology and by increased imperial expansion enabled the country to pay for the wars needed to effectively conquer the world.... British Imperial territories enjoy a high standard of living and some freedoms. Allies remain semi-autonomous. Conquered lands are effectively enslaved, and stripped of resources to support the Empire.

I think I should ask Obe to contribute at this point, as it was his idea that we're adopting, because it was a heck of a lot better than anything I had!

Online skyre

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Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #913 on: January 24, 2014, 11:29:00 AM »
Hmm... You've got some pretty big things to drive social unrest there Chrystal, simply through big changes within your empire's society and that's even before you take into account the native people who tend not to be too amused about being exploited.
I should perhaps point out given the background of your empire that Mercenaries would be more logical than standing armies. Soldiers standing around not fighting are expensive. Mercenaries you pay when you want them. That would also give you a means of divide and rule which your bad guys will definitely need to keep their empire alive by using local friendly forces for repression.
I'm probably hindering rather than helping though.

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #914 on: January 24, 2014, 01:13:34 PM »
The problem with mercenaries, though, is what are they doing when you aren't paying them?

Basically you have a bunch of heavily armed troops sitting around doing nothing, waiting for the next war. If I was one of them, I would perhaps consider starting the next war so I could get some pay.

Mercenaries actually cost more for the time you have them than your standing army for the same period.

The only way to stop said mercenaries from working for someone else is to keep them working for you. That basically means that they become your standing army.

One of my initial objections to Obe's idea was the possibility that these large corporations would each have their own private armies. This would lead to them fighting each other, and the empire would fall apart. Obviously that is unworkable. However, that wasn't what he was proposing. The military is still answerable to the Crown and to the PM. The PM is answerable to Parliament. But Parliament are no longer answerable to the people.

The armed forces are paid for via taxation and are distributed widely around the world, mostly defending important installations like the space elevators. Fifty million men/women under arms is actually not that many. The total numbers of men and women serving in WWII was nearly 92 million and that is just the belligerents. It doesn't include forces of non-combatant countries like those in Central and South America, Africa, and neutral European countries.given that the fifty million includes all branches about half that would be mechanised infantry. I think 1,250 divisions world wide is actually spreading things a bit thin!

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Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #915 on: January 24, 2014, 01:35:07 PM »
Like I said hindering not helping. :)
I'm commenting without enough information on what you've already discussed with Oberon to be helpful. If you'll like an opinion from a historian's perspective I'll be glad to give it if you can bring me up to speed. Otherwise I'm just going to keep making useless observations and I don't want to be a nuisance like that.

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #916 on: January 24, 2014, 01:45:48 PM »
Like I said hindering not helping. :)
I'm commenting without enough information on what you've already discussed with Oberon to be helpful. If you'll like an opinion from a historian's perspective I'll be glad to give it if you can bring me up to speed. Otherwise I'm just going to keep making useless observations and I don't want to be a nuisance like that.

Actually, no, you are helping.

This is all information that needs to be placed into Obe and my world-building thread when we get there. Being asked relevant questions like that helps me to consolidate what we've decided, and even add to it.

People throwing up random suggestions like "use mercenaries" is helpful. Because I hadn't considered using mercenaries, and when you suggested it, I had to give it consideration. Seriously, if it had been a viable option, I would have taken the suggestion!

I have given the detail above to explain why I haven't taken it.

One thing I do hope is that people don't think I'm deliberately squashing suggestions or objections. I'm not. I did give the idea due consideration.

I'm going to take this to "World Building" this weekend. Any suggestions will be appreciated, and may be incorporated into the world.

Offline Oberon

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Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #917 on: January 24, 2014, 02:28:36 PM »
Hi all :-) So, I'm the mysterious co-GM Chrystal was talking about *smiles*

With regards to mercenaries the British do have quite a history of using them, or at least up until Napoleonic times. I distinctly remember reading about them employing German mercenaries as light infantry. That said though I'm with my co-GM that they wouldn't fit this world all that well. We are talking a high (steam) tech world and it would, by necessity, require soldiers that are highly skilled and disciplined considering the complex organisation they are part of. It takes a lot of training to be an efficient cog in the machine that is a modern army. Much the reason I think why modern armies don't use mercenaries anymore, except in some very specific circumstances. So while they certainly could still play a role in a particular story set in our world, they wouldn't be a fundamental part of the empire's military as such. For example you could imagine them using mercenaries to guard things like prison camps or providing protection for dignitaries etc. Again this draws parallels in current history (e.g. Irak and outfits like Blackwater).

Anyway, its great fun creating a world like this. I'm looking forward to your world building thread Chrys!

Offline Thufir Hawat

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #918 on: January 24, 2014, 02:55:10 PM »
Not a problem oh purple lipped one! I shall endeavor to reply as such!
;D
Purple-lipped one? You think I'm speaking in purple prose :P?

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The difference between all of one side dropping out when there are two sides and all of one side dropping ou when there is only one side? Mathematics, dear mentat! 1-1=0 2-1=1. If all of one side drop out the other side still want to play, but the game is dead because they have no-one to play against. If everyone drops out, the game was obviously not going to work anyway!
Check my post again, Chrystal, would you? I said "half of a smaller group", because IME, such games tend to get more participants. So it's more like losing 2 out of 3 vs losing the 2 Empire players when you've got 5 in total. And losing both the guys that chose to play Empire is actually less likely.

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Exactly. A Guerilla war. In a guerilla war, the regular troops are basically on guard duty, which is boring as fuck. The Guerillas have the initiative, strike hard and fast and fade away. They don't hit the targets where the enemy troops are. They hit soft targets nearby to draw the troops away from what they are defending, then they hit the real target.
And hereby you have a game of chess.
Guess where the strike is going to be. Draw the enemy out to strike where you're ready is just the tip of all possible tactics. Not sure how many people would play that, just saying it's doable.

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So, no bloodbath amongst the troops on either side. The people who suffer are the civilians, caught in the bomb blast, or rounded up and shot in retaliation....
Not really, these are just the best-known examples. And they're best-known because there are many civilian deaths >:).
But let's stop before we get to discussing guerilla tactics. Since you seem to have made your mind, I don't see trying to dissuade you as even remotely useful.

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Which is sad but true... But if the players can think about their posts, they might actually win...
Indeed.

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In firepower, size, armour, mobility.
Yeah, sorry for the in-joke. "The factions aren't balanced" is a common complaint in system games (and I hear it is so in wargames and boardgames as well, though I've got less experience there).

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Rebellions are known to nhave succeeded when the rebels have received outside help, or have been assisted by deserters from the regular army. Lybia was assisted by US air power. The American Revolution was aided by the French and by the impossibly long British supply line.
Sure, but these aren't the only options. Besides, troops are like everyone else. Getting them to desert and join you is part of the strategy of any rebels in their sane mind, if it's at all possible.

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The French revolution succeeded because the French Troops were hopelessly outnumbered by the hatchet wielding civilians, had single shot muskets that could fire a maximum (in the hands of a British infantryman) or one round every 20 seconds, and they didn't want to fire on their own people, plus there were army units that deserted to the rebels. The Russian revolution succeeded because the army was away fighting the Germans and loosing. Name me a rebellion that has succeeded and i will give you the reason why.
Sure you want the exercise?
Here you go for the peasant that became king.
And no, technology changes nothing. An armoured noble rider was just as much of a fighting machine as a tank is today.

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Oh I forgot on those stats... support: Rebels 0, Empire infinte. Supplies: Rebels 4, Empire infinite, Numbers: Rebels c6,000, Empire c50,000,000
These are called poor initial stats, that's all >:).
I think we agree: if the players watch their posts, they might win.

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Seriously, I do appreciate this discussion, because it is helping me cement the ideas I need in my head. Every objection raised is one I can think about and come up with a solution to, so please, keep throwing them at me!
These aren't really objections, but have fun ;D!

Offline Thufir Hawat

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #919 on: January 24, 2014, 02:59:53 PM »
Right, I've had a chance to absorb everyone's advice and have a think. Thank you to everyone who helped me, I really appreciate I and you gave me a lot of information that I hadn't even thought about, but now definitely am.
I think I'm going to rework my original idea, as was very astutely pointed out that my initial idea will only appeal to players interested in a pirate story. My current thought is to shift the focus somewhat to hopefully broaden the appeal.
I will definitely make interest check thread and I think I'll stick to threads rather than a wiki. It will be easier for me to manage.
I did find the set of rules you suggested Thufir and they would be perfect for what I was thinking of doing, but I've now decided not to just move the goalposts, but build a basketball court, to use a slightly tortured metaphor.
I think I might also try to get a role as a co-gm as well, that might be useful experience.
I'm just going to remind you that on E., there's no shortage of players that would appreciate a pirate story. So you might still consider posting the thread you had in mind and seeing how much interest you would attract :P.
Either way, when you have a definite idea, I'm pretty sure we could fix you with a system that fits it >:)!

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #920 on: January 24, 2014, 04:53:38 PM »
;D
Purple-lipped one? You think I'm speaking in purple prose :P?

That was an oblique reference to the origin of your user-id. And I got the colour wrong. According to the book, Thufire Hawat had cranberry stained lips.

It is by will alone I set my mind in motion.
It is by the juice of sapho that thoughts acquire speed,
the lips acquire stains,
the stains become a warning.
It is by will alone I set my mind in motion.



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Check my post again, Chrystal, would you? I said "half of a smaller group", because IME, such games tend to get more participants. So it's more like losing 2 out of 3 vs losing the 2 Empire players when you've got 5 in total. And losing both the guys that chose to play Empire is actually less likely.

Ah, okay, sorry. To be honest, loosing half your players in any game is a pain in the backside, regardless of the game set up. However, I still say that for a freeform game like this, having everyone on the same side and the GMs on the other works better, PvE rather than PvP. This does not, in fact, remove PvP from the game. I'm sure players can find ways to fight each other if they want!

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And hereby you have a game of chess.
Guess where the strike is going to be. Draw the enemy out to strike where you're ready is just the tip of all possible tactics. Not sure how many people would play that, just saying it's doable.

I hate chess. It would actually work well in a face-to-face strategy game, I think, but I'm mindful of the fact that it can take months to play out a single hour of game-time in these forums. Most stories tha start with people setting out on a journey never arrive at the destination. If you start your shipwreck story with the ship  in port, chances are it will still be in port two months later when the last player to quit the game posts! This is experience, by the way, not cynicism.

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Not really, these are just the best-known examples. And they're best-known because there are many civilian deaths >:).
But let's stop before we get to discussing guerilla tactics. Since you seem to have made your mind, I don't see trying to dissuade you as even remotely useful.

Well, you can always try, lol. But no, chances are I'm not going to change my mind.

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Yeah, sorry for the in-joke. "The factions aren't balanced" is a common complaint in system games (and I hear it is so in wargames and boardgames as well, though I've got less experience there).

In board wargames I have played it is quite common for one side or other to have an advantage. However this then gives a balance to play when pitting an experienced player against an inexperienced one. However, many such games have optional rules that can be added or taken out to alter the balance of play

However, there are some conflicts that simply do not work as PvP. A great example is Operation Desert Sword, the 1991 liberation of the Kuwaiti Oil Fields. The conflict was so terribly one-sided, the Iraqi troops stood no chance. When a game company (I think it was GDW) created a board game of the conflict, rather than have that complaint levelled at them, instead they created a really excellent solitaire game! It can be played by multiple players, where each takes a different division of the allied force, but everyone is on the same side. (in that case, I would normally suggest having one player control all the Iraqi troops using the paper AI system).

Another great example is a game called Nato Division Commander produced in the 1980s by SPI, where one player controls three Russian divisions, acting more as a GM than a player, and the other player(s) control the regiments of a reinforced US division, defending the Fulda Gap in West Germany. In this game the Russian player has to stick to a pre-written plan and the US player(s) have limited intelligence as o what the Russians are doing.

Sorry, I know that's not really relevant, but I'm just saying I know what you mean, and I'm going by experience with my PvE policy on this one!

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Sure, but these aren't the only options. Besides, troops are like everyone else. Getting them to desert and join you is part of the strategy of any rebels in their sane mind, if it's at all possible.

lol, true. But if the troops are better paid and better fed than the rebels, and their families are looked after, and they are indoctrinated to see the rebels as terrorists, why would they?

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Sure you want the exercise?
Here you go for the peasant that became king.
And no, technology changes nothing. An armoured noble rider was just as much of a fighting machine as a tank is today.

I'll have a look at this, sure.

Technology is relative. An arrow will kill you as dead as a bullet. The technology of weaponry has changed over the years. Armour has evolved to match the power of weapons. In the Napoleonic era armour vanished from the battlefield because to be of any use against the firepower of the time it would be too heavy to move. With the advent of steam locomotion, it reappeared on armoured trains and ironclad ships. With WWI, the internal combustion engine was available and eventually became powerful enough to move an iron plated vehicle, and thus armour reappeared on the battlefield.

Now of course, troops have Kevlar plates protecting their chests and heads, but for mobility are not totally encased in it.

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These are called poor initial stats, that's all >:).
I think we agree: if the players watch their posts, they might win.

That mostly depends on the GMs  >:)

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These aren't really objections, but have fun ;D!

I'm appreciating the discussion. Every point made, either for or against, helps me (and I assume Oberon) work out what we are going to do.

Offline Thufir Hawat

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #921 on: January 25, 2014, 03:45:37 AM »
That was an oblique reference to the origin of your user-id. And I got the colour wrong. According to the book, Thufire Hawat had cranberry stained lips.

It is by will alone I set my mind in motion.
It is by the juice of sapho that thoughts acquire speed,
the lips acquire stains,
the stains become a warning.
It is by will alone I set my mind in motion.

Heh, I'll admit something...
I've never read Dune in English. So I didn't even know the word for the colour "cranberry" existed (but it obviously does, since my spell checker doesn't alert me :P).
Anyway, upon hearing purple, I didn't think of the mentat's lips. Thanks for the explanation, I think we can close this tangent now.

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Ah, okay, sorry. To be honest, loosing half your players in any game is a pain in the backside, regardless of the game set up. However, I still say that for a freeform game like this, having everyone on the same side and the GMs on the other works better, PvE rather than PvP. This does not, in fact, remove PvP from the game. I'm sure players can find ways to fight each other if they want!
Maybe, I just suggested an option. As stated above, not trying to change your mind. Here are some options, have a look, pick or reject them.

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I hate chess.
I love chess, of course >:).

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It would actually work well in a face-to-face strategy game, I think, but I'm mindful of the fact that it can take months to play out a single hour of game-time in these forums. Most stories tha start with people setting out on a journey never arrive at the destination. If you start your shipwreck story with the ship  in port, chances are it will still be in port two months later when the last player to quit the game posts! This is experience, by the way, not cynicism.
That's an argument for in media res beginnings, but less so against PvP games.

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Well, you can always try, lol. But no, chances are I'm not going to change my mind.
I can try, but why would I? We're both happy with things as they are.

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In board wargames I have played it is quite common for one side or other to have an advantage. However this then gives a balance to play when pitting an experienced player against an inexperienced one. However, many such games have optional rules that can be added or taken out to alter the balance of play

However, there are some conflicts that simply do not work as PvP. A great example is Operation Desert Sword, the 1991 liberation of the Kuwaiti Oil Fields. The conflict was so terribly one-sided, the Iraqi troops stood no chance. When a game company (I think it was GDW) created a board game of the conflict, rather than have that complaint levelled at them, instead they created a really excellent solitaire game! It can be played by multiple players, where each takes a different division of the allied force, but everyone is on the same side. (in that case, I would normally suggest having one player control all the Iraqi troops using the paper AI system).

Another great example is a game called Nato Division Commander produced in the 1980s by SPI, where one player controls three Russian divisions, acting more as a GM than a player, and the other player(s) control the regiments of a reinforced US division, defending the Fulda Gap in West Germany. In this game the Russian player has to stick to a pre-written plan and the US player(s) have limited intelligence as o what the Russians are doing.

Sorry, I know that's not really relevant, but I'm just saying I know what you mean, and I'm going by experience with my PvE policy on this one!
Actually, it's relevant. Whenever I hear "this faction is unbalanced", my first reaction is to see whether I can play in a way that they would end up the top dogs ;D!
I usually succeed.

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lol, true. But if the troops are better paid and better fed than the rebels, and their families are looked after, and they are indoctrinated to see the rebels as terrorists, why would they?
Step one, change some of the above.
A current civil war in a country I'd rather not name is a great example, BTW. The troops were better paid, fed and their families were undoubtedly looked over, and they sure as hell are indoctrinated. And yet, it was deserters that really started it.

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I'll have a look at this, sure.
I see you have. But whatever the case, it was an uprising that succeeded, and had to be put down by the forces of the neighbouring empire.

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Technology is relative.
Trivia like cuirrasiers aside, that's what I mean.

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That mostly depends on the GMs  >:)
The above is assuming the GM hasn't pre-decided on the outcome, of course. Of course, if she or he has, I tend to stop seeing the point in the game.
If you prefer, assume that's my bias talking >:)!

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I'm appreciating the discussion. Every point made, either for or against, helps me (and I assume Oberon) work out what we are going to do.
Isn't it better to say it's helping you to work out how you're going to do what you've decided?

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #922 on: January 25, 2014, 05:59:34 AM »
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Maybe, I just suggested an option. As stated above, not trying to change your mind. Here are some options, have a look, pick or reject them.

Which is why we are still discussing this! I am looking for more options, more background data, etc... Which I see as being at least one purpose of this thread. If everyone had said to me, "Don't be stupid, that'll never work", I would have scrapped the idea already!

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That's an argument for in media res beginnings, but less so against PvP games.

Agreed, but it is a pet peeve of mine and it is something I am going to be worrying over with Oberon when we come to set the game up: Where the hell do we start?

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Actually, it's relevant. Whenever I hear "this faction is unbalanced", my first reaction is to see whether I can play in a way that they would end up the top dogs ;D!
I usually succeed.

In fact, "This game is unbalanced" usually results from not reading the rules properly, and is an accusation normally levelled by he looser!

If the winner thinks the game is unbalanced, then it probably is.

One of my favourite board games was called Seelowe, SPI's game of the German plan to invade England. It had three scenarios. Scenarion 1 had the Germans invading in July. British forces were spread thin and were weak, and the Germans were limited to invading the eastern side of the country. This scenario was heavily biased in favour of the Germans. I know because I played it solitaire and the best I could achieve was a draw, but at the end of the game the British troops were so depleted that another two or three turns would see them wiped out.

The second scenario was the OberKommando Heer plan. This took place in September. Weather conditions were worse and would affect the Luftwaffe and transport of reinforcements. British forces were better prepared, much more numerous and a lot more powerful, but the Germans could land along the entire South coast from Thanet to Weymouh. This scenario was very finely balanced and playing it solitaire I would win with whichever side I wanted to win with, and if I changed my allegiance mid game the balance would alwats swing the other way. I also got a lot of "technical draw" results (defined as "The success of the invasion would depend almost entirely on future weather conditions" by the rule sheet).

The final scenario was the Kreigsmarine plan, also in September, but limited to Kent and East Sussex. Now, playing his as a total numpty as the British would result in a German victory. But using a decent bit of common sense as the British player, you could quickly bottle the Germans up in Kent, build your troops and up and push them back into the sea. The bias was there in favour of the British.

Bias in a game is not a bad thing, it just needs to be recognised and taken into account!

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Step one, change some of the above.

Indeed. But that is easy to say, not necesarily to do.

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A current civil war in a country I'd rather not name is a great example, BTW. The troops were better paid, fed and their families were undoubtedly looked over, and they sure as hell are indoctrinated. And yet, it was deserters that really started it.

I can guess which one you mean. Here is an interesting question: At what point does a rebellion become a civil war? I would say, at the point where the regular army splits and starts fighting itself. The US Civil War was never really a "rebellion", as the South already had a "standing army" that was part of the US Army until the Southern states seceded. The Confederate army was led by officers from West Point!

It is possibly worthy of note that if we are talking about the same war, the rebels are currently loosing!

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I see you have. But whatever the case, it was an uprising that succeeded, and had to be put down by the forces of the neighbouring empire.

And I have, I believe given you the unique combination of circumstances that produced that result!

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The above is assuming the GM hasn't pre-decided on the outcome, of course. Of course, if she or he has, I tend to stop seeing the point in the game.
If you prefer, assume that's my bias talking >:)!

I took part in a game where the GM seemed to have this idea that our forces were incapable of winning an engagement. I wasn't the only one to complain.

There is no way I would ever make it impossible for the players to win, but I might make it very difficult, because I'm an evil person!
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Isn't it better to say it's helping you to work out how you're going to do what you've decided?

That too... :D

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #923 on: January 25, 2014, 03:02:37 PM »
Okay, so, I have created an open world-building thread

http://elliquiy.com/forums/index.php?topic=195296.0

Please could anyone wishing to help, contribute or comment, please do so there? Oberon and I would appreciate suggestions and constructive criticism.

Once we have everything decided, we will create a "canon" thread and actually build the world there using the elements from the open thread.

Offline Thufir Hawat

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #924 on: January 25, 2014, 06:48:14 PM »
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Agreed, but it is a pet peeve of mine and it is something I am going to be worrying over with Oberon when we come to set the game up: Where the hell do we start?
Pet peeves are to be respected, but I didn't know this to be the case.

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In fact, "This game is unbalanced" usually results from not reading the rules properly, and is an accusation normally levelled by he looser!

If the winner thinks the game is unbalanced, then it probably is.
Sometimes, and sometimes I'm the winner who thinks it is.

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One of my favourite board games was called Seelowe, SPI's game of the German plan to invade England. It had three scenarios. Scenarion 1 had the Germans invading in July. British forces were spread thin and were weak, and the Germans were limited to invading the eastern side of the country. This scenario was heavily biased in favour of the Germans. I know because I played it solitaire and the best I could achieve was a draw, but at the end of the game the British troops were so depleted that another two or three turns would see them wiped out.

The second scenario was the OberKommando Heer plan. This took place in September. Weather conditions were worse and would affect the Luftwaffe and transport of reinforcements. British forces were better prepared, much more numerous and a lot more powerful, but the Germans could land along the entire South coast from Thanet to Weymouh. This scenario was very finely balanced and playing it solitaire I would win with whichever side I wanted to win with, and if I changed my allegiance mid game the balance would alwats swing the other way. I also got a lot of "technical draw" results (defined as "The success of the invasion would depend almost entirely on future weather conditions" by the rule sheet).

The final scenario was the Kreigsmarine plan, also in September, but limited to Kent and East Sussex. Now, playing his as a total numpty as the British would result in a German victory. But using a decent bit of common sense as the British player, you could quickly bottle the Germans up in Kent, build your troops and up and push them back into the sea. The bias was there in favour of the British.

Bias in a game is not a bad thing, it just needs to be recognised and taken into account!
Yeah, different difficulties can be part of the message. No argument here, but some people will go for the greater difficulty, as I believe you know.
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Indeed. But that is easy to say, not necesarily to do.
Never said it is easy, did I? I said hard makes for just as fun games (and for many people, hard is absolutely required for sex... >:)).

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I can guess which one you mean. Here is an interesting question: At what point does a rebellion become a civil war? I would say, at the point where the regular army splits and starts fighting itself. The US Civil War was never really a "rebellion", as the South already had a "standing army" that was part of the US Army until the Southern states seceded. The Confederate army was led by officers from West Point!

It is possibly worthy of note that if we are talking about the same war, the rebels are currently loosing!
I believe we are. And "currently" is the keyword here.

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And I have, I believe given you the unique combination of circumstances that produced that result!
Yes, you have sent me a very nice analysis. But neither "deserters" nor "outside help" were part of it, therefore, circumstances can change that.

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I took part in a game where the GM seemed to have this idea that our forces were incapable of winning an engagement. I wasn't the only one to complain.

There is no way I would ever make it impossible for the players to win, but I might make it very difficult, because I'm an evil person!
Yeah, I've seen GMs like that one. I don't play with them.
OTOH, my players have called me an evil GM before. They just might have a point ;D!

Okay, so, I have created an open world-building thread

http://elliquiy.com/forums/index.php?topic=195296.0

Please could anyone wishing to help, contribute or comment, please do so there? Oberon and I would appreciate suggestions and constructive criticism.

Once we have everything decided, we will create a "canon" thread and actually build the world there using the elements from the open thread.
Spoilerblocks are handy when you haven't noticed posts like that one.
I guess I'd ask some new questions there.