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Old 09-25-2018, 12:48 AM   #31
lachimba
 
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Default Re: Does DFRPG more and more resemble a super hero game to you

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Originally Posted by evileeyore View Post
Now? Now?!?!

You don't read the classics much do you?



I'll grant you, it's become more 'archetypal' and 'tropey' in modern fantasy/action'/cliffhanger genres, but there has always been the merry band that unites for common cause, etc, yada.

Could you not reply to me in that manner? I find it really unecessary for you to ask questions about what I read or don't read with that tone.



Thanks.

Regarding the question. I would point to the Odyssey, Beowolf and so on as stories with one very overpowered PC and lots of NPCS.


Perhaps you read different books. I hope you can raise the point you are making in a more friendly manner. Perhaps by referring to said "classics".
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Old 09-25-2018, 02:33 AM   #32
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Default Re: Does DFRPG more and more resemble a super hero game to you

One hero, plus sidekicks, is probably the more common literary form, but it's pretty common in superheroes as well (many, possibly most, superhero comics are single hero titles), and there are plenty of teams in other genres (traditional DF is closer to a heist movie than a superhero movie, and heist movies frequently are team of misfit types).
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Old 09-25-2018, 04:37 AM   #33
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Default Re: Does DFRPG more and more resemble a super hero game to you

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Originally Posted by lachimba View Post
Regarding the question. I would point to the Odyssey, Beowolf and so on as stories with one very overpowered PC and lots of NPCS.
Robin Hood, Le Morte Darthur, The Three (and Four) Musketeers, Dracula, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz*, Argonautica, The Journey to the West...

Hmmm. I thought there were more olde tyme 'hero team' stories... but nope, those are all that I can recall. The hero group really is more popular now than it was then, but it's certainly no modern invention.




* though, to be fair most of the Oz books employ a ragtag team of heroes, so this small number really is a teensy bit larger.
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Old 09-25-2018, 05:34 AM   #34
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Default Re: Does DFRPG more and more resemble a super hero game to you

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Hmmm. I thought there were more olde tyme 'hero team' stories... but nope, those are all that I can recall. The hero group really is more popular now than it was then, but it's certainly no modern invention.
.
I never wrote it was. I used "now" as in "now lets talk about this" not as in "now = today".

Certainly many fantasy stories like Elric, Conan and so on along with many action movies Die Hard, Lethal Weapon, and so on, are either solo or buddy stories. Where there are other characters they are minor characters. If they were all PCs one would be worth much more than the others and get more table time (the GM obviously likes them better). In combat, one is frequently more powerful than the rest, the others may even sit the combat out or rely on the GM to give them something interesting to do.



There are many alternatives, and I'm sure people could point to parts of those stories that do play like modern RPGS. I have no doubt about that.


I merely have pointed out that when playing DFRPG have noticed how much the various PCs performing their roles resemble a super hero squad. They reseemble very much that Avengers style group.
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Old 09-25-2018, 07:26 AM   #35
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Default Re: Does DFRPG more and more resemble a super hero game to you

The team is essential to dungeon-crawling fantasy even if it isn't inherent to fantasy (especially epic and heroic fantasy) in general.

The trope probably firmed up the most with The Lord of the Rings, which featured an adventuring company of four rogues, four warriors of various stripes, and a wizard, using all manner of weapons (axes, bows, knives, shields, staffs, swords), stealth, and magic to pass through at least one genuine dungeon and a bunch of other dangerous places, fighting a variety of monsters. The power levels weren't equal, but I'd be hard-pressed to say that anybody but perhaps Merry, Pippin, or Sam was a "sidekick." It's true that hack 'n' slash fantasy cherry-picked one Tolkien storyline to arrive at that point, but the influence is there nonetheless.

The three things fantasy gaming arguably added were:
  1. Clerics as healers.
  2. Cool ethnic stuff (e.g., your warrior might be a samurai with a katana).
  3. Equally powerful team members.
You could debate #2, because I'm not sure nonhumans aren't just a way to do cool ethnic stuff without reference to real-world ethnicities. Even #1 is shaky, since the differences between "cleric" and "wizard," and between "ancient arts of the healer" and "healing spells," are kind of vague in a lot of cultures' tales. Only #3 is solidly a gaming invention.

Coming around to supers, I think you have the same top-category roles – rogues who use speed and/or wits, warriors who use force (mainly super-strength and super-toughness), and wizards who use strange energies (be they energy blasts or psionics) – but the tropes carry different freight. The equality of power levels is once again an RPG addition, though.

Looking at it like this, I can't help but wonder whether games aren't essentially reskinning the same archetypes (not necessarily Jungian, but hero, trickster, and wise elder are always there) over and over again in every genre.
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Old 09-25-2018, 01:49 PM   #36
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Default Re: Does DFRPG more and more resemble a super hero game to you

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I was responding to what I saw as the OP's interest in character archetypes/roles:
In OD&D the roles were weak, outside of the one or two thing they could do as part of their class OD&D characters are on a level playing field. What a player built around his character in terms of hirelings, henchmen, allies, magic item, tactics, mundane wealth, etc, counted as much if not more.

The impression I got that everybody had their own take that was a mishmash of whatever inspired them in terms of early 70s fantasy and science fiction. Another thing is that the early campaigns either were a bunch of players operating in their own self-interest (Blackmoor) or focused on exploration of a sprawling location (Greyhawk). Blackmoor in particular started as a sophisticated wargame campaign except instead of controlling armies, the players placed a character who was in control of or part of (at first) of an army. There was a good guy side and a bad guy side both comprised of players. Gradually over time especially when the Blackmoor Dungeon were put in by Dave Arneson. Things shifted more to how people normally expect of tabletop roleplaying campaigns where the referee controls a bunch of NPCs and the players are part of a team.

Greyhawk because the campaign was focused on the exploration of the Greyhawk dungeon started out pretty with the players operating as a team.

The whole idea of roles and archetypes operating as a coherent team with defined roles is fairly new. Transferred over from MMORPGs into D&D 3.0. Sure AD&D 1st edition had some of that. Everybody wanted somebody to be the cleric i.e. the healer. But even in AD&D 1st what you got for your class was kinda of weak in terms of what all needed to be done to explore a dungeon or to be successful on adventures. Finding the right magic and coming up with general party tactics counted for as much.

As for for mythic archetype the general template in my experience is that when it mattered to players it was always stated in terms of I want to be X but with Y and Z. For example I want to be Robin Hood but using a naginata as my primary melee weapon. The D&D/AD&D classes pretty covered the more comment request.s. I want to be Gandalf so you played a Magic User, I want to be Aragon so there was a ranger. I want to play Conan so I played a Fighter then later a Barbarian. However most invariably wanted to put their own spin on it. And the adventuring parties that were formed as a result were nearly always a weird mishmash. And the players formed their tactics out of that mishmash.

I hope that makes sense.

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Old 09-25-2018, 02:46 PM   #37
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Default Re: Does DFRPG more and more resemble a super hero game to you

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In OD&D the roles were weak, outside of the one or two thing they could do as part of their class OD&D characters are on a level playing field.
I'm not quite sure what you mean by OD&D. The infantry (fighter)/artillery (wizard mostly)/support(cleric mostly) split existed in Basic D&D back in 1977, it's just that D&D didn't have meaningful zones of control before 3e, so the infantry didn't actually have the tools to do their job (in theory party order was supposed to do that, and in games like Wizardry it did, but in actual play that never worked in anything but corridor fights).
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Old 09-25-2018, 03:42 PM   #38
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Default Re: Does DFRPG more and more resemble a super hero game to you

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I'm not quite sure what you mean by OD&D.
The original release of D&D in 1973 plus its supplements; Greyhawk, Blackmoor, Eldritch Wizardry, etc.


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The infantry (fighter)/artillery (wizard mostly)/support(cleric mostly) split existed in Basic D&D back in 1977, it's just that D&D didn't have meaningful zones of control before 3e, so the infantry didn't actually have the tools to do their job (in theory party order was supposed to do that, and in games like Wizardry it did, but in actual play that never worked in anything but corridor fights).
My point while the cleric as healer, fighter as tank, and magic user as artillery existed, the differences were not strongly defined until much later (D&D 3.0).

The superheroic noted in the OP is a product of how D&D and dungeon crawling was handled in the early 2000s. Not earlier especially OD&D in the 70s.
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Old 09-25-2018, 03:56 PM   #39
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Default Re: Does DFRPG more and more resemble a super hero game to you

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My point while the cleric as healer, fighter as tank, and magic user as artillery existed, the differences were not strongly defined until much later (D&D 3.0).
Right, you were playing a totally different game from me. 3e changed a lot of balance issues, but the roles were super obvious back in 1e.
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The superheroic noted in the OP is a product of how D&D and dungeon crawling was handled in the early 2000s. Not earlier especially OD&D in the 70s.
While there are certainly important differences, they weren't because of the introduction of roles.
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Old 09-25-2018, 04:31 PM   #40
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Default Re: Does DFRPG more and more resemble a super hero game to you

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but the roles were super obvious back in 1e.
I have to agree. I started xD&D with AD&D First Edition in 1979. The roles were already graven in stone at that point. I don't think classes were remotely interchangeable, and I can't think of anything more important than class balance within a party, if all you were looking at was character sheets before accounting for player personality and tactics. As well, there were baked-in assumptions about who did what that you couldn't escape in the GMing advice and adventures published at that point; e.g., there were bottlenecks in adventures where you had to have a thief use skills nobody else could learn, the ranger track because nobody else could, or the magic-user cast Read Magic.
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