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Old 06-24-2018, 03:15 PM   #11
Jim Kane
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Default Re: Request for Clearer Spell Writeups

Perhaps the best answer can be found in "do both".

Keep the primary description format as it is - in the preferred style the designer likes to work in and present information in - then, at the end, include a comprehensive and condensed "Stat Sheet" - as in the style JLV is suggesting - for a quick and easy reference; and allow the GM to by-passing the prose descriptions - as it serves expediency.

Remember, much of the life-blood which contributes to the unique vibe of The Fantasy Trip flows through the prose-style of the designer. I for one would not want to miss a drop of that.

JK
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Old 06-24-2018, 03:36 PM   #12
JLV
 
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Default Re: Request for Clearer Spell Writeups

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Originally Posted by Steve Jackson View Post
For better or worse, I intentionally didn't do that because I wanted it to feel less like a game bestiary and more like an in-world document. Storytelling ftw, or no?
Okay, how about their stats summarized in block form at the end? ;-)

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Originally Posted by Jim Kane View Post
Remember, much of the life-blood which contributes to the unique vibe of The Fantasy Trip flows through the prose-style of the designer. I for one would not want to miss a drop of that.
A valid point. Okay, how about a separate monster summary sheet somewhere that only has the stats (though frankly, I personally would prefer to see the stats in an organized fashion WITH the prose, because I usually refer to both as I play...)
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Old 06-24-2018, 03:38 PM   #13
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Default Re: Request for Clearer Spell Writeups

I enjoy reading and digesting the prose ITL style of descriptions, as they convey the thinking of the designer and how the creature might enter and behave in play. And I think that color is where the most interesting content is in a creature - the part that explains what it is and how it behaves and so on - which is what makes it a non-human creature, and how it plays out. The stats are important, especially the details of differences and exceptions to how humans work, but their nature is what makes them interesting. However they are a bit slower to extract the starts from for use in play.

When Metagaming's Codex gave a dump of creature stats, they made the stats easily visible in one place, but demonstrated the worst of the opposite extreme, where there's a creature name followed by a standard stat block, with little or nothing about what they are and how they act, and possibly dropping important details and special rules, etc.

To me, the main value in creature content is when it really covers all the things that make a creature not just like a human foe with different stats. Every creature should be considered for things like non-human facing diagrams, HTH situation, its behavior in and out of combat, habitat, diet and numbers, how good its senses are, how much the stats of individuals might vary...

Oh, and I've been thinking about starting a thread for this but also: how fast to they recover from wounds and fatigue, especially when they have very high ST and use fatigue for things (e.g. a ST 100 dragon).
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Old 06-24-2018, 03:50 PM   #14
Jim Kane
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Default Re: Request for Clearer Spell Writeups

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Originally Posted by JLV View Post
Okay, how about their stats summarized in block form at the end? ;-) A valid point. Okay, how about a separate monster summary sheet somewhere that only has the stats (though frankly, I personally would prefer to see the stats in an organized fashion WITH the prose, because I usually refer to both as I play...)
Is that different than what I suggested when I wrote: "...Keep the primary description format as it is - in the preferred style the designer likes to work in and present information in - then, at the end, include a comprehensive and condensed "Stat Sheet" - as in the style JLV is suggesting - for a quick and easy reference..." ?

Or, are you seeing some other format?

JK
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Old 06-24-2018, 05:43 PM   #15
Kirk
 
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Default Re: Request for Clearer Spell Writeups

Maybe I missed it in the thread, but I wouldn't mind having the *talents* on legible cards for easier reference in addition to spells that could be passed out to players.
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Old 06-24-2018, 06:06 PM   #16
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Default Re: Request for Clearer Spell Writeups

No, no, that's exactly the same thing -- I just didn't see your comment until later and then went back and edited it into my comment.

I want to emphasize to the general audience here, though, that I would much rather the stat summary block was left WITH the prose portion (whether at the end or the beginning). The prose portion IS extremely important to me (besides Steve having a unique "voice" when he writes these things up), and I certainly don't want to lose that or minimize it in any way. Apparently my phrasing was somewhat clumsy here!
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Old 06-24-2018, 07:04 PM   #17
Oneiros
 
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Default Re: Request for Clearer Spell Writeups

I just really want the spells to be in alphabetical order under each IQ listing! (Same for talents).

Seriously, what was the reasoning for the apparently random order of spells and talents in the original games? Both the Microgames and Advanced/ITL suffered from this.
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Old 06-24-2018, 08:46 PM   #18
Kirk
 
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Default Re: Request for Clearer Spell Writeups

Yes, at least some type of order, for both talents and spells.

Although it was, at the time, an interesting exploratory experience to just read through the talents and spells as opposed to feeling like one was reading a dictionary, an order of sorts is surely worthwhile.

Maybe by cost, or type of spell, or of course by name, perhaps how the codex was meant to be used, but written in the rules.
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Old 06-26-2018, 12:31 AM   #19
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Default Re: Request for Clearer Spell Writeups

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Originally Posted by zot View Post
Maybe this is obvious, but I'd like to request that the new spell writeups have a format that clearly indicates the cost, duration, and any other requirements at the top, before the prose.
I use:
Name (type) [ST cost]: Description.

Blur (T) [1/1]: This defensive spell makes the subject harder to see/hear/smell; -4 DX of all attacks/spells targeting the subject.

Detect Magic (T) [1]: Cast on a single item or person, it reveals the presence of magic enchantment or active spells. It does not reveal what the spell or enchantment is, though. NOTE: The GM makes the roll against the Caster’s adjDX, not the player.

Illusory Guise (T) [1/1]: Similar to the normal illusion spell, the Illusory Guise creates an illusion on the subject (can include the caster) that lasts for 12 rounds. The spell follows all rules for illusions, including disbelief.

Drop Weapon (T) [1 or 2]: Makes the victim drop the object held in one hand – a weapon, shield, potion, or other item, but it will not make a ring or amulet drop off. ST cost is 1; 2 if the victim’s ST is 20+.

Guiding Star (S) [4]: This spell uses the Stars to navigate through the wilderness or seas. It does not give a distance but will show the direction to a known target.
The spell operates by mystically increasing the brightness of a star in the right direction and altering the color to make it stand out. Only the caster sees the change. Success gives the direction. Failure gives nothing. Critical Failure gives an erroneous direction. The spell only works so long as there are Stars in the sky that are not obscured by daylight, clouds, or weather. The target, be it a person or place, must be known to the caster.

I have reworded some spells for clarity. Hmmm... I should probably add something about range from the caster in Illusory Guise.
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Old 06-28-2018, 08:49 PM   #20
ak_aramis
 
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Default Re: Request for Clearer Spell Writeups

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Kane View Post
Perhaps the best answer can be found in "do both".

Keep the primary description format as it is - in the preferred style the designer likes to work in and present information in - then, at the end, include a comprehensive and condensed "Stat Sheet" - as in the style JLV is suggesting - for a quick and easy reference; and allow the GM to by-passing the prose descriptions - as it serves expediency.

Remember, much of the life-blood which contributes to the unique vibe of The Fantasy Trip flows through the prose-style of the designer. I for one would not want to miss a drop of that.

JK
In prior editions, that list was in the Codex... and I found the codex QUITE useful as a GM.
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