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Old 06-13-2021, 12:07 PM   #41
whswhs
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Default Re: When did traps get silly?

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Originally Posted by Kromm View Post
In those old "Real Men, Real Roleplayers, Loonies and Munchkins" memes that used to float around the Internet, I was 50% "Real Roleplayer" and 50% "Loony." I always saw solving problems as being for "Real Men" ("We'll defeat them through major force and good tactics, hrr hrr.") or "Munchkins" ("We'll figure out the optimal use of resources and plusses."). I preferred to do what my alter-ego would do or just what seemed amusing – in both cases, damn the consequences.
I've looked at that system, and I'm 100% Real Roleplayer. In its precursor, Power Gamer/Wargamer/Roleplayer/Storyteller, the Storyteller list might have been targeted at me, and it really was the closest fit to Real Roleplayer (Roleplayer in that older system was closer to Loony).

I'm not very interested in the technical details of traps. But I want to have a sense that they're something that makes sense in the setting I'm envisioning. In medieval or comparable settings, in particular, I mostly prefer to have low-end magic; I'd rather not have wizards be either supers or one-man artillery, at least not without a few years of buildup to the implied power level. Everyone to their own taste, of course!

Another way to describe this, I think, would be to say that the "gamist" element is the weakest in my playstyle. When I read mysteries, for example, it's because I like the characters (as with Dorothy Sayers or Charles Stross) or the milieu (as with Conan Doyle); I hardly ever have any hope of "playing the game" of solving the mystery. But what I primarily want is to set up the situation and say, to quote Gregor Vorbarra, "Let's see what happens."

Though another factor in this might be that I'm definitely an introvert.
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Last edited by whswhs; 06-13-2021 at 12:57 PM.
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Old 06-13-2021, 06:19 PM   #42
Michael Thayne
 
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Join Date: May 2010
Default Re: When did traps get silly?

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Originally Posted by whswhs View Post
I'm not very interested in the technical details of traps. But I want to have a sense that they're something that makes sense in the setting I'm envisioning...

...what I primarily want is to set up the situation and say, to quote Gregor Vorbarra, "Let's see what happens."
This is very much my taste. I want settings that run on a consistent set of rules whose implications can be worked out. Violations of that are mostly what I'm thinking of when I think of "silly" traps.
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Old 06-14-2021, 06:09 AM   #43
ak_aramis
 
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Alsea, OR
Default Re: When did traps get silly?

I often have bypass methods, and most traps in dungeons I've created are fairly sensible.

For example, a door with a fire-trap... which can be disabled from the dungeon side via a physical disconnect which is not reachable from the outside.

the basic mechanism is a flint in the door and a ceiling strike plate, with a series of holes connected to a flush tank leading to above the door swing sprinkler holes. Pulling the lever disconnects the flush valve and raises the striker plate, so no sparks and no fuel. Normal mode? those entering knock, and give the word of the day. A guard inside then disconnects it. And there's a vent shaft, too... but it doesn't connect inside...

This leads to a hall leading to a 30'x30' room, divided into a 25x30 and a 5x30 foot path, separated by fixed iron bars (set in using Slush-Yuck, the T&T version of Earth to Mud). The exit from the narrow side is locked with a steel bar in a hidden slot which is locked when the handle is 15' from the door, and unlocked at 23'. .. noting that the handle is in the large side. Also in the large side is the door to the barracks. There are spears galore in the wide side. So players get stabbed at through the bars, and don't have room to effectively use their own long weapons...

The only other traps in that dungeon are a trapped chest, using a blue puppet dragon (or sometimes, a rasta puppet dragon), and the unintentional traps: the septic pits and the enchanted cold room. Oh, and the drains for the wash-water.
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Old 06-15-2021, 08:10 AM   #44
David Johnston2
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Default Re: When did traps get silly?

I was just rewatching The Last Airbender and came to the part where Aang and Zuko start playing Indiana Jones, by exploring a city belonging to the original Fire Benders. Aang comments that it's surprising that the traps they encounter still work after centuries, but it turns out to be a hint that city is still occupied by a few descendants who are maintaining things.
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Old 06-22-2021, 05:28 PM   #45
Black Leviathan
 
Join Date: Sep 2018
Default Re: When did traps get silly?

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Originally Posted by Anders View Post
Grimtooth's Traps which is a source of many silly traps is from 1981.
Yeah, I pretty much came in to say this. There were some funny traps before Grimmtooth's, but this was the first time I saw attention dedicated to excessive and ridiculous traps and they were a huge hit when they came out, started influencing dungeons to have weirder more pointlessly excessive traps.
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Old 06-23-2021, 03:49 AM   #46
The Colonel
 
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Default Re: When did traps get silly?

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Originally Posted by Irish Wolf View Post
What the first post means by "silly" isn't something like the Grimtooth trap that's a lock whose trap fires a sharpened, poisoned telephone pole from the opposite wall (the poison's for those who claim their character can survive being hit by a sharpened telephone pole), it's the existence of functioning mechanical traps and deadly poisons in structures that haven't seen any maintenance for over a century. (That's why I use such things as indicators that the structure currently has sapient occupants, even if they're not the originals - orcs may not be adept at inventing, say, delicately-counterbalanced levers between a floor tile and a loaded spring-launcher for spears, but they can reload and maintain the launcher and the balancing mechanism.)
Ah. In that case ... I suspect it was always thus and self awareness has only recently crept up on us. Much like "dungeon ecology", which, despite the occasional Gygaxian spasm, was observed more in its absence.
I remember it being highlighted in Oblivion as various NPCs remark on the extroardianry state of preservation of the traps in the Ayelid ruins. Still nothing on their ability to preserve fruit though.
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