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Old 09-05-2010, 04:10 AM   #21
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Default Re: The art of Dungeon Fantasy 13: Monsters 1

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Originally Posted by demonsbane View Post
Isn't better to let different people to think and play in different ways, putting "official" value judgments aside?
The great value of GURPS Dungeon Fantasy is its lack of genericness. We've already got a big, generic system for covering any sort of fantasy you want. Dungeon Fantasy is much more specific. Elves are so and all Knights have Born War Leader, and so on. Because the authors know exactly how Dungeon Fantasy works, they can specifically write their material with this in mind. The result is a far more detailed set-up that allows for instant action, rather than requiring extensive world-building before-hand.

Now, if you want to run Dungeon Fantasy differently, you have all the tools necessary to tear it apart and put it back together again your way. You can use Dungeon Fantasy as a spring-board for your own games. But I think the inherent specificity of Dungeon Fantasy needs to be maintained. It's what sold the series so well in the first place.
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Old 09-05-2010, 04:28 AM   #22
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Default Re: The art of Dungeon Fantasy 13: Monsters 1

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The great value of GURPS Dungeon Fantasy is its lack of genericness. We've already got a big, generic system for covering any sort of fantasy you want. Dungeon Fantasy is much more specific. Elves are so and all Knights have Born War Leader, and so on. Because the authors know exactly how Dungeon Fantasy works, they can specifically write their material with this in mind. The result is a far more detailed set-up that allows for instant action, rather than requiring extensive world-building before-hand.

Now, if you want to run Dungeon Fantasy differently, you have all the tools necessary to tear it apart and put it back together again your way. You can use Dungeon Fantasy as a spring-board for your own games. But I think the inherent specificity of Dungeon Fantasy needs to be maintained. It's what sold the series so well in the first place.
Exactly. Now, I personally feel that the silliness is only partially related to the specificity, and that it can be easily be ignored for slightly more serious campaigns. DF can walk this thin edge, and be appropriate for both camps (and it has done so very well so far).
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Old 09-05-2010, 10:24 AM   #23
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Default Re: The art of Dungeon Fantasy 13: Monsters 1

Put me in the "No Munchkin art" bandwagon, not because I dislike Kovalic's art style, but because I enjoy the simple comic-booky black and white ones much more. If they came with Munchkin art, I'd still buy whatever DF products came out, the art in RPGs doesn't isn't anywhere near as important as well written rules and clever presentation, which DF has loads of.

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I agree with you on the fact that it would be nice to not have GURPS DF be a silly game but if there were a cool, high powered fantasy game that was written seriously then I would not care how silly DF degenerated into because I would never buy DF anymore, only the serious high fantasy game. But such is life...
I can't agree with this, or the more general "DnD is serious business" argument. Even though no one pointed out to me how silly an evil black skinned elf who had a thing for spiders and lived in hell (that came in two flavors, one very christian, the other infinite) riding a giant metal spider golem with a palace on it's back, in an entire plane made out of web was, I still thought it was extremely silly. Much like the rest of the genre. If you ask me, DF is far less silly, it points out the the Shadow Elves do not worship a scantily clad spider-woman. ;-)

In all seriousness, if you want a less silly DF game, ignore the silly parts (Elven dye jobs, Leprechauns, references to real world actor/ninjs) dig out your old copy of the FRCS (not the fourth ed. One, it sucks) and use that setting and its fluff and feel. That's what I did, untill I embraced the more fun aspect of DF.
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Old 09-05-2010, 10:41 AM   #24
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Default Re: The art of Dungeon Fantasy 13: Monsters 1

I never got the impression that DF was meant to be as silly as Munchkin... maybe in the same direction but not all the way there.
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Old 09-05-2010, 10:48 AM   #25
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Default Re: The art of Dungeon Fantasy 13: Monsters 1

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I can't agree with this, or the more general "DnD is serious business" argument. Even though no one pointed out to me how silly an evil black skinned elf who had a thing for spiders and lived in hell (that came in two flavors, one very christian, the other infinite) riding a giant metal spider golem with a palace on it's back, in an entire plane made out of web was, I still thought it was extremely silly. Much like the rest of the genre. If you ask me, DF is far less silly, it points out the the Shadow Elves do not worship a scantily clad spider-woman. ;-)

In all seriousness, if you want a less silly DF game, ignore the silly parts (Elven dye jobs, Leprechauns, references to real world actor/ninjs) dig out your old copy of the FRCS (not the fourth ed. One, it sucks) and use that setting and its fluff and feel. That's what I did, untill I embraced the more fun aspect of DF.
Well Queen of the Demon Web Pits was not done by Gygax while the Giant and Drow series were. I think that during this time Gygax wanted out of D&D and dumped off the Queen of the Demon Web Pits to another author. I really do not like this module at all and I asked Gygax what his vision of the final module for the series would be and he said that it would have been something where the PCs had to be very careful because if they made the wrong decisions they could free the Elder Eye (an aspect of Tharizdun) when trying to defeat Lolth. The Elder Eye was what set off the adventure in the first place because Eclavdra worshipped it and she organized the giants to attack the surroundings land so as to get enough sacrifices to free the Tharizdun. So some drow were serving Lolth and they fought against the House of Eilservs (the house Eclavdra rules) which serve the Elder Eye. Eclavdra just wanted to gain power so that she could replace Lolth as the queen of the drow. The Elder Eye just granted Eclavdra powers so that it could become free and this god who destroy the entire universe if it became free so it was merely using Eclavdra.
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Old 09-05-2010, 11:57 AM   #26
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Default Re: The art of Dungeon Fantasy 13: Monsters 1

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Exactly. Now, I personally feel that the silliness is only partially related to the specificity, and that it can be easily be ignored for slightly more serious campaigns. DF can walk this thin edge, and be appropriate for both camps (and it has done so very well so far).
(Bold letters are mine)

I want to second this completely.

Exaggerating the silly aspects (that BTW, aren't exclusive of Dungeon Fantasy in the world of fiction and role playing games (*)) to the point of defining Dungeon Fantasy as comic-relief silly fantasy is committing the characteristical error of taking the partial for the total.


(*)
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Originally Posted by tg_ambro View Post
Even though no one pointed out to me how silly an evil black skinned elf who had a thing for spiders and lived in hell (that came in two flavors, one very christian, the other infinite) riding a giant metal spider golem with a palace on it's back, in an entire plane made out of web was, I still thought it was extremely silly.
A black skinned, twisted elf, has the potential of being a symbol, like a plane made out of webs, or an spider god/dess (well, they are actual, acknowledged symbols) . . . but people not understanding or denying symbolism (an unfortunate trait of the current times) will prefer to laugh at any hint of it, hence "silliness in in the mind of the interpreter".
...Even people-heroes-gods entering into caves, killing or defeating dark creatures and taking their stuff out of the cave (treasures, cows, the waters, it's the same) is/was a symbolic scenareo of key cosmogonic importance, between other meanings and a number of applications.
...OTOH, that "black skinned elf with a giant metal spider golem" isn't, by default standards, more silly than certain Starships, Bioships, Mecha with AI, mutants with superpowers and lots of things we have around here usually independently of Dungeon Fantasy. Again, some people will regard some of such things as meaningful or plausible in some degree, total or partial, and not as mere absurdities, so officially classifying them and their respective genres as "hilarious" and "silly" is completely gratuitous for them, if not worse.

For me, it's a matter of understanding, tolerance and respect towards others thinking differently, that don't want to role play with the "silly" label officially stapled in the back.
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Old 09-05-2010, 12:05 PM   #27
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Default Re: The art of Dungeon Fantasy 13: Monsters 1

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I never got the impression that DF was meant to be as silly as Munchkin... maybe in the same direction but not all the way there.
That's a point.

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(...) So some drow were serving Lolth and they fought against the House of Eilservs (the house Eclavdra rules) which serve the Elder Eye. Eclavdra just wanted to gain power so that she could replace Lolth as the queen of the drow. The Elder Eye just granted Eclavdra powers so that it could become free and this god who destroy the entire universe if it became free so it was merely using Eclavdra.
I believe is easy to understand what you're saying with this: the same plot, twists and themes we can see in other supposedly "non-silly" genres, contradicting statements as:

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It isn't about deep scene-setting or storytelling. It's about whipping out a combat map and slaughtering things to bits for rewards . . . kind of like Munchkin, with GURPS rules.
Because taking the partial for the total results in reductionism.
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Old 09-05-2010, 12:15 PM   #28
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Default Re: The art of Dungeon Fantasy 13: Monsters 1

FWIW, an anecdote:
In my youth, I ran Queen of the Spiders. It took about 3 years playing probably around 2-3 times per week sometimes all day and all night (sometimes for 2-3 days straight...no sleep!). In all that time we completed modules 1-6 (the character sheets were tragically lost just before the Demonweb Pits). It was, needless to say, epic. But it was also about as serious a campaign as teenagers can make.
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Old 09-05-2010, 12:38 PM   #29
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Default Re: The art of Dungeon Fantasy 13: Monsters 1

GURPS bestiaries treating creatures that don't exist in the real world or in myth have, by and large, suffered from a silliness abundance since at least 3e. (And even the mythic GURPS beasts have had some silliness, manifested primarily in the selection of which mythic beasts to include.) Take a look at the space and fantasy bestiaries from 3e to see what I mean.

DF13 would probably not be any different on that point even if DF itself were not silly (at least in Kromm's eyes).
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Old 09-05-2010, 12:38 PM   #30
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Default Re: The art of Dungeon Fantasy 13: Monsters 1

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Originally Posted by Edges View Post
FWIW, an anecdote:
In my youth, I ran Queen of the Spiders. It took about 3 years playing probably around 2-3 times per week sometimes all day and all night (sometimes for 2-3 days straight...no sleep!). In all that time we completed modules 1-6 (the character sheets were tragically lost just before the Demonweb Pits). It was, needless to say, epic. But it was also about as serious a campaign as teenagers can make.
I just want to say that when I played these modules it wasn't as if there weren't jokes and humor but I felt that they were compelling enough to really get my attention and we played these modules the same way that you described and I really felt that that it wasn't silly at all. The same was true of the Temple of Elemental Evil and other modules by Gygax. Later modules were just killing monsters and taking their stuff so I became bored of AD&D and went to cyberpunk and sci fi games but these degenereated into "me have big gun so me shoot you in face" type games and then I stopped playing RPGs until I found the Stormbringer game and Call of Cthulhu and then I was interested again. And now there is GURPS DF and I am interested in playing dungeon delving with lots of cool skills and powers. But I am shifting towards Chaosiums Classic Fantasy using GURPS rules because when Chaosium makes adventures they are of the style that I like. In Search of the Trollslayer was their first dungeon delve adventure and I was very impressed and am eagerly awaiting more adventures from them.

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