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Old 06-13-2018, 06:31 AM   #1
Jim Kane
 
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Default Examining "Once Per Day" in TFT: Solution or Problem?

Examining "Once Per Day" in TFT: Solution or Problem?

On the subjects of: Healing Spells, Recovery from Injuries, etc., quite often of late in our discussions, the term: "Once per Day" has been evoked as part of an offered solution of how to govern: time, rate, speed, and frequency. While on the surface, a seemingly logical and completely serviceable solution in it's own right, I tend to reflexively resist going down this road as a rule-deliniator for use in The Fantasy Trip.

Why?

As we have no established incremental time-keeping system beyond the 5 second combat turn, which are not minutes or hours, on a day-length scale - of which there are 17,280 of these 5 second combat turns "per day". How then would a GM easily and accurately track exactly which combat-turn *on the next day*, Kov, the wizard, can finally cast again - now, finally re-charged 24 hours later - when down in the labyrinth?

It make a big difference when the Orcs are busting down the door your party has spiked-shut, in order to secure their over-night resting place down in the labyrinth.

And therein lies the rub.

I cannot imagine any GM would want to engage in the bookkeeping required on an Adventure Control Sheet, to accurately determine when a specific figure has completed a cycle of 17,280 combat turns from the time the spell was last cast, or a wound last inflicted.

Yes, a GM can just "fudge" the refractory period, by saying: "Okay, the Orcs have left your bloodied and bruised adventure party shackled to the cold, stone walls, and have left you to rot - if, a troll doesn't come along and eat you first! Anyway, you hang by your chained wrists, and it is now the next day. Kov your magic spell is recharged and you can now free everyone."

That sounds about as exciting to me as... some other game system.

The real problem rears it's head if we consider the question of: "What if the adventure party is not in a downtime period?"

Let us imagine it is sometime the "next day"; however, in this case, the party is in the middle of a heated battle, or, being pursued through the labyrinth tunnels by something large, fast, and nasty... What then?

How will a GM, know exactly when - *on which combat turn* - Kov can cast again?

Is he just going to *fudge it* as a "GM decree"?

If he does, he opens the door to inviting future expectation of such arbitrary and elastic rulings on the part of his players - and those lead to player-abuse, GM-abuse, arguments and case-pleadings further down the road; and worst of all:

A violation of: The Willing Suspension of Disbelief.

And *that* is when this specific game stops being magical, and the spell which is unique to The Fantasy Trip is broken.

While that is just one of the mechanical problems which would face us, the other problem I see with adopting a "once per day" deliniator, is that it is wholly antagonistic to the entire form and structure of our established magical system.

The Fantasy Trip uses a unique Jacksonian magic system, which is engineered around a "Per Usum" platform; whereas, other game systems use a Vancian magic system which is engineered around a "Per Diem" platform.

While both platforms have merit within their own games; however, because we have no time-keeping system which matches our tactical-scale over an extended period of time, we will be lost in a world of "fudging it" every time the question of when a "per day" has passed *every time* the characters are operating on the combat time-scale - the most critical part of the game.

I personally feel we should not take the "easy way out" on this one.

I believe we can come up with a better rule which matches, preserves, and subscribes to our Jacksonian "Per Usum" platform, and still achieves the goal of informing the 24 hour time period with accuracy. And, if we are going to seriously consider adopting the Vancian concept of "Once Per Day" as a rule deliniator, I feel we are obligated to also provide a matching rule for how that passage of time is accurately measured - without much "fudge".

Those are my thoughts on matter; but hey, do what you like.

JK
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Last edited by Jim Kane; 06-16-2018 at 11:12 PM. Reason: Typo & Clarity
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Old 06-13-2018, 07:19 AM   #2
zot
 
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Default Re: Examining "Once Per Day" in TFT: Solution or Problem?

My priest system introduces 5 appointed times per day, many of its ceremonies last "until the end of the day," and a few of its ceremonies can only be performed "at the beginning of the week, at dawn."

I don't think I can credibly be against once-per-day anything :).
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Old 06-13-2018, 07:35 AM   #3
Jim Kane
 
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Default Re: Examining "Once Per Day" in TFT: Solution or Problem?

Quote:
Originally Posted by zot View Post
I don't think I can credibly be against once-per-day anything :).
Neither can I, *provided* the conditional I outlined above is met:

" And, if we are going to seriously consider adopting the Vancian concept of "Once Per Day" as a rule deliniator, I feel we are obligated to also provide a matching rule for how that passage of time is accurately measured - without much "fudge".

JK
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Last edited by Jim Kane; 06-13-2018 at 09:38 AM. Reason: Typo
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Old 06-13-2018, 07:41 AM   #4
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Default Re: Examining "Once Per Day" in TFT: Solution or Problem?

I agree wholeheartedly, Jim. Very, very little should be structured like D and D, cuz... it´s awful.

There are reasons TFT is a great RPG, and you make the correct points.

I didn´t want to get into it with anyone who thinks playing D and D is fun, that is up to them.

But for those that understand why TFT is unique and a game I and my friends will still play after 40 years is a culmination of these fundamental concepts.

Once a day is a kluge, a cheat, and will destroy a piece of what makes TFT worth playing. I hope SJ never uses the proto matter to resurrect TFT.

We could discuss moving to a flat odds curve, say with a single d20, because that would be another disaster for the system.

Next step would be eliminating hexes and just using feet radius for each spell in a giant book of spells with hard to remember details, all of which can only be cast once a day. Make sure to put adolescent monster art on the cover.

We´ll need demonic levels of hell, armor classes, and a lot of stats that are hardly ever used.

What else could we do to ensure an updated and modern TFT that appeals to everyone?

Oh, right, expensive, hard to store, and bulky metal minis instead of convenient and interesting and easy to manage counters.
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Old 06-13-2018, 07:41 AM   #5
Chris Rice
 
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Default Re: Examining "Once Per Day" in TFT: Solution or Problem?

I tend to agree that the “per day” idea is a bit of a lazy one, although I’m not quite so bothered by it. As to the “when exactly” the “day” referred to begins and ends, I’d go with the setting of the sun for the end and it’s rising for the start. Obviously, that would mean not all spells that last for a day would actually last for the same amount of time, but I’m ok with that.
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Old 06-13-2018, 09:52 AM   #6
zot
 
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Default Re: Examining "Once Per Day" in TFT: Solution or Problem?

I find it hard to agree that once per day is somehow lazy or klugey. Dance Macabre, stories of witches and druids, and a host of folklore stories portray magic as sensitive to times and seasons.
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Old 06-13-2018, 10:03 AM   #7
Jim Kane
 
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Default Re: Examining "Once Per Day" in TFT: Solution or Problem?

Be it *lazy* or not, it is unarguably: *not precise*.

And on our 5-Second Combat Time-Scale, this spells the difference between life or death; depending on the exact timing of when a wizard is re-charged for action - as in the examples I cited above.

But hey, do whatever you like.

JK
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Last edited by Jim Kane; 06-13-2018 at 10:11 AM. Reason: Typo
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Old 06-13-2018, 11:42 AM   #8
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Default Re: Examining "Once Per Day" in TFT: Solution or Problem?

My dungeons were so tough that no one EVER had the bright idea to SLEEP in one. (That's true of my AD&D campaigns as well). And I can assure you that they would have regretted the attempt. So, the "sleep in the dungeon to recover" strategy never was a factor in my campaigns.

I would say that "once per day" is an approximation that is useful most of the time. If pressed to identify the exact recovery time required, I'd say that it requires at least 6 hours of good sleep in a 24 hour period. (And no way you can sleep well in a dungeon!) "Good sleep" is sleep in a guarded campsite, room at an inn, etc.

EDIT - Deleted overly fussy system and replaced with simpler system:

Each figure will accumulate 1 fatigue point (FP) at the end of a day if he was minimally active or inactive that day. He will accumulate 2 FP at the end of an average workday (i.e., 10 hours of work, travel, study, etc). He will accumulate 3 FP on a long workday (i.e., more than 10 hours of work, travel, study, etc.)

3 hours of “good sleep” will eliminate 1 FP. So six hours of good sleep is enough to wipe out FPs after a normal work day. 18 hours' good sleep will wipe out all accumulated FP.

A figure will reduce all ST, DX and IQ rolls by one for each FP he starts the day with. This affects the rolls, but not the attribute. So an IQ 12 wizard with 2 FP still knows his IQ 12 spells. DX *is* adjusted for determination of movement and attack order.

Stimulant potions are available for $XX. Each dose eliminates 1 FP for one day. But the FP returns after that. Taking multiple doses may cause an addiction issue.

At the GM's discretion, a good strong pot of coffee, tea or the like will act as a stimulant potion, but only 1 FP can be eliminated.

Of course, in 38 years of roleplaying, I've never needed such a system.

BUT...it might be useful in a pursuit-type scenario.

Or, you can simply require a 2/ST or 2/IQ roll to recover after a night in which the character fails to get 6 hours good sleep. Add one die per consecutive night he fails to get 6 hours good sleep. Failure means that he does not recover.

Last edited by tbeard1999; 06-13-2018 at 12:02 PM.
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Old 06-13-2018, 10:52 AM   #9
Anthony
 
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Default Re: Examining "Once Per Day" in TFT: Solution or Problem?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Kane View Post
As we have no established incremental time-keeping system beyond the 5 second combat turn - of which there are 17,280 of these "per day". How then would a GM easily and accurately track on exactly which combat-turn *the next day*, Kov, the wizard, can finally cast again - now, finally re-charged 24 hours later - when down in the labyrinth?
That's easily solved by ignoring it. The odds of it being relevant are minimal. However, if you need to keep track, just note the time (on a 24h clock) the spell was cast.
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Old 06-13-2018, 11:41 AM   #10
JLV
 
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Default Re: Examining "Once Per Day" in TFT: Solution or Problem?

I think that continuing to sneer at role-playing styles is infantile, but hey, do what you like.

I'd much rather talk about TFT, frankly.

Last edited by JLV; 06-13-2018 at 11:46 AM.
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