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Old 02-20-2011, 04:00 PM   #221
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Default Re: GURPS Monster Hunters: what will you do with it?

To me, "campaign in a box" implies something like D&D's setting books and boxed sets; you get the rules and genre assumptions in the PHB+DMG, but the Dragonlance book(say) gives you maps, settlements, cultures, races and monsters, seeds and hooks, etc. A GM with a general familiarity with the material can pick a town off the map, walk newbie players through creation, pick a hook from a later chapter, and go. The GURPS equivalent would be the setting books(Prime Directive, Alpha Centauri, THS, etc).

Basic+DF, OTOH, gives you the equivalent of PHB+DMG. It's got enough setting assumptions to proceed without picking a specific setting(like D&D gives you Greyhawk), but the town, the inn, the innkeeper, and the dungeon the GM will have to wing, unless they add specific materials to pin that down.

Likewise, MH could be Black Ops or it could be Buffy. There's probably enough assumptions to proceed without picking a specific setting, and you can add specific materials to pin that down.
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Old 02-20-2011, 04:49 PM   #222
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Default Re: GURPS Monster Hunters: what will you do with it?

To me "campaign in a box" implies something like Chad Underkoffler's "Campaign in a Box" column in Pyramid: a short text which in broad terms sketches a setting from bird's eye view, and then offers a handful of locales, NPCs and adventure/conflict hooks to kick start the action.
I.e. A setting which is small and sketchy ("fitting inside a small box"), but nevertheless playable "out of the box" (i.e. without worldbuilding).

It is true that DF, Action and most likely MH make genre and even very basic setting assumptions ("What are Dragon-Blooded?", "What powers have vampires?", "This is basically the real world, but more cinematic."), but they're not really sufficient to start a campaign "out of the box."

You'll have to add "setting" ("What is the Kingdom we're in called? Or is it a Magocraty?", "Are we CIA agents going against the KGB, or professional gangsters robbing a casino?", "Are supernatural monsters known to the public?") to turn it into a real campaign.
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Old 02-20-2011, 06:19 PM   #223
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Default Re: GURPS Monster Hunters: what will you do with it?

Wouldn't a MH Campaign-in-a-box requires the motivations for a big bad (cult/demon/fast food chain) to be worked out for you, with stats for Big Bads, lieutenants and mooks?

Having said that, isn't there something in a Pyramid that would sort of provide something along these lines? Something about Red Sorcery. Sounded like magical steroids for quasi-Cthulhu cultists.
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Old 02-21-2011, 12:19 AM   #224
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Default Re: GURPS Monster Hunters: what will you do with it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by lachimba View Post
no idea about J.
"They prefer to be called junior hunters", perhaps?
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Old 02-21-2011, 01:17 AM   #225
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Default Re: GURPS Monster Hunters: what will you do with it?

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Originally Posted by Brett View Post
"They prefer to be called junior hunters", perhaps?
"Why does it say 'fodder' on my payslip?"
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Old 02-21-2011, 01:31 AM   #226
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Default Re: GURPS Monster Hunters: what will you do with it?

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"They prefer to be called junior hunters", perhaps?
yeah could be
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Old 02-21-2011, 01:50 AM   #227
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Default Re: GURPS Monster Hunters: what will you do with it?

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Originally Posted by Crakkerjakk View Post
They were to my mind.
To mine, too. This is a worked genre example for TL8 that is designed to get the GM from zero to running-a-game in as little time as possible. To me, that says, "campaign in a box," because I see it as the equivalent of a prepackaged dinner that happens to offer several variations in how you can cook it.

If you'd rather refer to things like DF, Action, and MH as "genres in a box" instead of "campaigns in a box," so be it. It's not like either are official terms, or even commonly accepted terms in the industry -- which means it's kind of silly to argue over such a small difference in phrasing, yes?
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Old 02-21-2011, 06:11 AM   #228
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Default Re: GURPS Monster Hunters: what will you do with it?

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Originally Posted by sir_pudding View Post
Neither DF nor Action! contain settings.

Not sure which post you are replying to, since my later one is pretty clear that I'm aware that DF and Action contain NO settings. However, the author of MH series says that MH does (2 of them). He also says that MH is like a "campaign in a box". My contention is it isn't unless there's at least the level of detail presented in GURPS Fantasy Roma Arcana setting.

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Old 02-21-2011, 11:47 AM   #229
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Default Re: GURPS Monster Hunters: what will you do with it?

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Not sure which post you are replying to, since my later one is pretty clear that I'm aware that DF and Action contain NO settings. However, the author of MH series says that MH does (2 of them).
I'm fairly certain I never said that, because if I had, I'd be lying. There are most definitely not "two settings" in MH.

Quote:
He also says that MH is like a "campaign in a box". My contention is it isn't unless there's at least the level of detail presented in GURPS Fantasy Roma Arcana setting.
Griffin, please see my post above. There are no industry-wide definitions of what "campaign in a box" means. Debating it is like debating whether a book is "crunchy" or "non-crunchy" -- the answer is, and always will be, "It depends on what you think that term means, as well as on your opinion of the book." This is the kind of thing I could see derailing the thread completely, so I'm asking everyone to please let it go; I'd prefer not to have to put on my mod hat when doing so.
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Old 02-21-2011, 12:19 PM   #230
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Default Re: GURPS Monster Hunters: what will you do with it?

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Originally Posted by Rev. Pee Kitty View Post
I'm fairly certain I never said that, because if I had, I'd be lying. There are most definitely not "two settings" in MH.
I'm not certain how anyone got the misimpressions that they did, but I'm concerned that it may be my fault. So I'd like to be completely clear here:

First, understand that different people mean different things by "setting." For some people, a setting is as simple as "medieval Europe" or "a terraformed Mars." For others, a setting can't be called a setting until it has a campaign theme, a purpose, and broad sketches of a few key movers and shakers that will affect the plot of the game. And for some, a setting isn't a setting until the GM knows all of the important NPCs and organizations -- and has motivations for each and plots already in place which take their actions into account.

I'll refer to these settings as "rough settings," "detailed settings," and "complete settings," respectively.

It's worth noting that two games could have the exact same rough setting, while having totally different detailed settings (e.g., "a game on modern Earth where you'll be fighting wars" vs. "a game on modern Earth where you're all teachers at a high school"). The same holds for a single detailed setting supporting multiple complete settings (e.g., I could run a game where you're all teachers at a high school, but give one an urban city feel with NPCs and plots lifted from a police drama, while the other has an anime feel with lighthearted humor and romance).

And here's the two great parts:

1. When I say "setting," a third of you think of a rough setting, a third think of a detailed setting, and a third think of a complete setting. And everyone starts talking under that assumption, but continuing to simply use the term "setting."

2. For everything I just said above, you can substitute the word "campaign" for the word "setting," and it all holds true to almost the same extent. One man's "campaign" is another man's "setting" -- I hear the two used to mean the same thing (by different people) all the time. And frankly, I'm not saying this is wrong.

But I digress.

So, let's look at the various "genre series," or whatever you'd like to call them.

Dungeon Fantasy

DF has one rough setting: a pseudo-video-gamey, tongue-in-cheek (but not necessarily silly!) take on medieval Europe.

It had zero detailed settings until DF10 came out. Arguably, the various taverns (and the towns they're in) could be used to run an entire campaign; there's no reason any of those cities couldn't be "the Town." But I'd respect the opinion of anyone who felt that these inns and towns don't count as "settings."

DF has no complete settings.

Action

Action has one rough setting: modern-day Earth (where "modern day" can swing up to a few decades back in time if desired). Since the real world is kind of boring, Action 2 includes a lot of advice on making it feel more cinematic and over-the-top than modern Earth usually does.

Action has no detailed settings. It does have nine "campaign types," however, each of which offers some of the info one would expect in a detailed setting. (This makes sense, since the assumption is that you're out to emulate a particular kind of action movie; thus, Action focuses more on giving you advice and tools for emulating a particular setting instead of offering up a lot of specific, fixed settings to begin with.)

Action has no complete settings.

Monster Hunters

Monster Hunters has one rough setting: modern-day Earth. Our world. ("But there are no monsters in our world," you say? That's what the people in this setting think, too!) For this rough setting, MH2 includes a lot of advice on turning it into a supernatural game with dark conspiracies, properly evil bad guys, and so on.

MH2 has six sample detailed settings. All are relatively brief, but are definitely enough to get the GM and players started.

MH has no complete settings.
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