Recent content by Alex_P

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    Speak Your Mind in the Next Version of Dungeons & Dragons

    Oh, please. The thing about the "open playtest" is that playtesting is what WotC does after these two others stages called "design" and "development". An open playtest is mainly a way to generate buzz and tighten up presentation. It's certainly not the right vehicle for actually collecting...
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    Speak Your Mind in the Next Version of Dungeons & Dragons

    They do get it. But supplements -- particularly ever-narrowing supplements -- are a poor income stream. And, eventually, a lot of people do get tired of a particular ruleset and start looking for something new (just not "too new"). -- Alex
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    Speak Your Mind in the Next Version of Dungeons & Dragons

    Your comparisons to MMOGs are deeply flawed. For example: It's true that aggro largely exists to allow MMOG monsters to make suboptimal decisions, mirroring how a human GM might "roleplay" them in a fight. D&D4's "defender" mechanics aren't aggro. Instead, they aim to remove the underlying...
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    The Ghosts of D&D: Past

    I'm reading these backwards. So, having already seen "Future" and "Present"... You say in the intro that you're looking to figure out an edition schism. But, in this article, which really should be laying the groundwork for understanding all that... 1. The entire history of D&D under Gygax...
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    The State of Dungeons & Dragons: Future

    But look at, like, the actual non-combat rules. They've always been pretty perfunctory. What are skills called in AD&D 2nd Edition? "Non-weapon proficiencies". And, IIRC, they're an optional subsystem. Which is to say, I don't think that "so much more" thing you're describing ever really...
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    Circumcision: a Pillar of American ignorance

    The pain's not that memorable, really. They gave me oxy after my surgery. I chewed the pills instead of swallowing them, because that's a thing I do. Later on I found out that there's an inhibitor component in oxycodone pills, designed to prevent them from functioning if you crush them up (to...
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    The State of D&D: Present

    The quote paints R.A. Salvatore as a guy with a distinct lack of imagination (supposedly D&D4's target audience, if you accept the sketchy paraphrase of Mearls in the "Future" article). He doesn't get tieflings? They've been around -- and popular -- in D&D for over 15 years, through several...
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    The State of Dungeons & Dragons: Future

    People said the same thing about 3rd Edition when it came out. Is D&D4 more combat-oriented? It's really a matter of perspective. At the end of the day, D&D as a ruleset tends to focus on fighting, swag, and dungeon traps; the rest kind grows up organically/haphazardly (depending on who you...
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    The State of Dungeons & Dragons: Future

    This is a problem of tribalism, not divergent games. You don't need to be playing the exact same game to have something to talk about. You just have to have something to say other than "My game is the only one with real roleplaying." To whit: Did he actually "admit" that in so many words or...
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    Gay Marriage: Is It Perhaps Moral to Oppose It Independent of Religion?

    Faulty premises lead to faulty conclusions. I mean, come on! 1. In the modern world, population is not the major limited resource that determines a nation's "power". 2. Just because two people can't get together and reproduce biologically doesn't mean they're incapable of forming a...
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    Vets Protest America's Army Tournament

    Veterans for Peace also prominently protests against military recruiters. -- Alex
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    271: Red Box Renaissance

    Such super-long-running campaigns are a rarity, though, even in the "old-school" community. More typically, campaigns seldom last longer than a year and groups change settings from time to time. I don't consider it at all unreasonable to assume that most players with campaigns that entrenched...
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    271: Red Box Renaissance

    SunHymn, I'm totally with you on, well, practically everything. However... I don't think replacing at-will attacks for fighters with stances (which seem rather lamer to me, too, but the big secret is they're basically the same thing) and digging up a Larry Elmore picture to put on the cover...
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    271: Red Box Renaissance

    I don't see 4th Edition as especially more problematic than 3rd Edition on this front -- just differently so. -- Alex
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    271: Red Box Renaissance

    Surges fit well with the concept of hit points as stamina - you get to take a breather and regain some of your vigor. Cure Light Wounds introduces way more "dissociation" than surges do. I'm not at all holding Guild Wars up as an example of complex or (god forbid) realistic sword-fighting. I'm...