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Old 01-08-2014, 05:31 PM   #31
PK
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Default Re: [RPM] Low-End Grimoire

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Originally Posted by JP42 View Post
Let's be honest, what I want is Designer Notes. I want the spells broken down and explained better why decisions were made the way they were.
Trouble is, those are two different requests, because I (the person who'd presumably be writing the Designer's Notes) only created a minority of the spells. Most came from user submissions. So in most cases, I didn't make the build decisions -- I merely agreed with them.

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I want them built three different ways that are all legal and all legit, and might be different in important ways depending on the relative skills of the caster.
I could see this being useful, sure. That said, I'm not sure if it's interesting enough to sell an issue of Pyramid. Most spells don't really have many alternate approaches, and those that do usually don't have several. I think it's better off to handle this as a discussion, like this one.

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But things like why is Detect Secret Doors an Area spell while Seek Person is a Ranged spell aren't really addressed to my satisfaction.
So it can detect everything at once rather than one door at a time. Sorry if that wasn't clear; I tried to make it such.

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Why does the Alertness spell use Bestows a Bonus, and not require that you the different "Acute" advantages?
I just thought it was simpler. If you prefer Altered Traits, Acute Senses, go for it! That way is definitely correct as well.

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We get plenty on "this is how to use this modifier" but not enough on "this is why" for me. So, what I want is not rules, nor a set of predefined rituals, but a ritual building guide. What Powers is to Advantages, a guide on how to effectively use Advantages to their fullest in character design. I want that for Rituals.
But I think you're missing out on a key point. There is no "one way" to build a ritual. For example, if you wanted to build Detect Secret Doors with Range instead of Area of Effect (presumably renaming it "Detect Secret Door"), then you can. If you think that Crossroads is a stupid Path for that, and would rather call it a Sense Matter ritual, then so it is. Or if you think the proper way to handle that ritual is to target the subject with Altered Traits, Detect Secret Doors, then that's fine as well.

There's no magic formula past what the book lays out. I don't have such a guide in me, waiting to be written. I can't emphasize this enough: the rituals in Chapter 4 are not "the right way to do this." I spelled that out in the final box for a reason. They're a guide. A suggestion.

RPM is art, not science. If the ritual you build feels right to you and the GM, then you nailed it.
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Old 01-08-2014, 05:47 PM   #32
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Default Re: [RPM] Low-End Grimoire

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Originally Posted by PK View Post
RPM is art, not science. If the ritual you build feels right to you and the GM, then you nailed it.
I guess I wish that wasn't the case. Too touchy-feely. Too squishy. I'm craving absolutes and there just aren't any.
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Old 01-08-2014, 06:06 PM   #33
PK
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Default Re: [RPM] Low-End Grimoire

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I guess I wish that wasn't the case. Too touchy-feely. Too squishy. I'm craving absolutes and there just aren't any.
I'm afraid there's never going to be a system that satisfies all of the following:
  1. Flexible enough to let the GM and/or players design new spells, with guidelines and rules for doing so.
  2. Straightforward enough to use as part of a game (e.g., figuring out how to cast a spell takes a few minutes of game time and a few pages of rules, as opposed to days of research through various thick books).
  3. Clearly defined enough that every spell has one obvious build and there's never a need for GM interpretations or rulings.
This is one of those "pick two" situations, and RPM goes with #1 and #2. By way of comparison, systems with a fixed list of spells, all created by fiat (such as GURPS Magic and Path/Book magic) go with #2 and #3.
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#SJGamesLive: I answered questions about GURPS After the End and more!
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