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Old 05-29-2018, 11:07 PM   #71
zot
 
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Default Re: priest and theologian

I made a Google Doc for Priests and Theologians. Anyone who would like commenting privileges on this document is welcome to send me a private message.
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Old 05-30-2018, 01:15 AM   #72
JLV
 
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Default Re: Priests should be healers???

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Originally Posted by Jim Kane View Post
JLV, this is an intriguing idea for simulating the "Act of God" and "Deus Ex Machina" elements within a story/Adventure.

However, as a PC, I imagine the character you describe would play on the tactical-level much like the "Vancian-Style Magic-Users" who can only "cast _____ once per day", and then are forced into a liability position within the rest of the Adventure Party.

This idea has potential merit worth exploring. If you really want to open the dialog up JLV, why not start a separate thread so everyone can read your fully fleshed-out ideas on this?

I for one would be very interested in hearing more from you on your idea.

JK
Jim, I'd love to do that, except for the part (as I stated towards the beginning of this thread) I don't actually HAVE any "fleshed out ideas" in this area -- this is something I just recently tried to come to grips with (actually, after reading Dragon Warriors on the subject of religion about a year ago), and I've just been throwing out almost random ideas trying to get people who HAVE thought about this in greater depth to help me puzzle my way through this.

I wonder if Steve et al, ever gave any serious thought to this conundrum back in the day? In game terms (as currently written), really, a Priest is almost irrelevant -- he is actually either a warrior or a wizard, with the skills appropriate to that kind of character and the "Priest" talent sort of thrown in almost as an afterthought. Of course that was totally in keeping with HT's extreme atheism and general contempt for religion and religious people, but this is a Fantasy game, and not just HT's vision of the world, so I really think it could be effectively addressed if people were so inclined. (And I do know that HT was talking about a "Religious Supplement" at one point towards the end there, so apparently he finally relented...) But as for me, I'm just fumbling around the edges here, though, and I suspect this topic will take me at least a year or so to think my way through (so many ramifications, so many potentially unforeseen consequences to tampering with the existing game's structures for magic and magical power...)
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Old 06-06-2018, 06:59 PM   #73
David Bofinger
 
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Default Re: Priests should be healers???

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Originally Posted by JLV View Post
I think it would be VERY interesting to play a character who has little opportunity to directly attack an enemy, but who, at the same time, can indirectly manipulate things to ensure that enemy is defeated before the first arrow flies.
A concern here is what I call the Netrunner Effect. Suppose we have a team of PCs, one of whom is the netrunner who can hack computers by playing a mini-game in cyberspace. The problem is that nobody else is much use in cyberspace, so while that mini-game is being played nobody else is doing anything.

If most of the PCs do things during combat, but one does his stuff before combat, there's a risk of the Netrunner Effect. It's generally better if everyone does things at the same time scale.

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Besides, as we've pointed out in other places on this forum, building and running TFT characters is so easy that there's no reason why you can't have one of each kind.
If everyone has a character who works before and during, or if everyone has a character who works before and another who works during, that could alleviate any Netrunner Effect.
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Old 06-06-2018, 07:44 PM   #74
Jim Kane
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Default Re: Priests should be healers???

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Originally Posted by JLV View Post
Jim, I'd love to do that, except for the part (as I stated towards the beginning of this thread) I don't actually HAVE any "fleshed out ideas" in this area...
You mean: "I don't actually have any fleshed-out ideas *yet*. I know you my friend, the Idea Well will gush forth soon enough. ;-)
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Originally Posted by David Bofinger View Post
A concern here is what I call the Netrunner Effect... If everyone has a character who works before and during, or if everyone has a character who works before and another who works during, that could alleviate any Netrunner Effect.
David, I am afraid that I am simply not following you on this. Would you please explain further so I can understand. I am lost, and my IQ roll was totally blown on this. Thanks.

JK
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Old 06-06-2018, 10:28 PM   #75
Skarg
 
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Default Re: priest and theologian

I always liked that TFT had no official system-level (or even Cidri setting-level) religious / divine powers, and left it up to GMs whether to have any, and what kinds.

This leaves room for all sorts of possibilities, including:

* GMs who don't want to have any magic super-powers.

* GMs who want players to have to discover in play (or at least, by committing to playing a religiously-invested PC) what supernatural effects a religion has, if any, and how they work.

* GMs who want to invent entirely different types of religious powers from whatever a system might publish as an official template for religious powers.
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Old 06-07-2018, 01:06 AM   #76
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Default Re: priest and theologian

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Originally Posted by Skarg View Post
I always liked that TFT had no official system-level (or even Cidri setting-level) religious / divine powers, and left it up to GMs whether to have any, and what kinds.

This leaves room for all sorts of possibilities, including:

* GMs who don't want to have any magic super-powers.

* GMs who want players to have to discover in play (or at least, by committing to playing a religiously-invested PC) what supernatural effects a religion has, if any, and how they work.

* GMs who want to invent entirely different types of religious powers from whatever a system might publish as an official template for religious powers.
The ONLY problem I have with that is that middle item -- I don't like making players "invest" in a character that might not be what they actually want to play when the "big reveal" happens.

Plus, just because someone writes a rule (even someone like Steve Jackson), doesn't mean anyone actually has to use it -- remember the Prootwaddles? ;-)
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Old 06-07-2018, 06:02 AM   #77
zot
 
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Default Re: priest and theologian

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Originally Posted by Skarg View Post
I always liked that TFT had no official system-level (or even Cidri setting-level) religious / divine powers, and left it up to GMs whether to have any, and what kinds.

This leaves room for all sorts of possibilities, including:

* GMs who don't want to have any magic super-powers.

* GMs who want players to have to discover in play (or at least, by committing to playing a religiously-invested PC) what supernatural effects a religion has, if any, and how they work.

* GMs who want to invent entirely different types of religious powers from whatever a system might publish as an official template for religious powers.
Providing a system doesn't eliminate room for possibilities, it just adds another one. GMs are free to disallow anything in the game they want to. Many D&D DMs, for instance, don't allow psionics. So the "don't want it" option is already in TFT and would still be, even if a priest system were to exist.

I agree with JLV about the points. There aren't all that many points for talents and imagine spending points to get IQ 14 just because your character wants Theologian, only to discover late in the game that it was all for nothing. That would snuff your candle of fun. On the other hand, if it's a high trust table and the GM has promised the player that something good will come of this, then the "if any" part doesn't apply because the player knows their points aren't spent for nothing.

GMs can always house rule a priest system, even if a priest system already exists, so having one doesn't eliminate any options. There are plenty of house ruled alternate magic systems for D&D.

It's easy to just throw a subsystem together but creating one that's rich and balanced takes a lot of work. Once a GM does something like that, they should publish it so other GMs can use it. Which is why I made my priest system available. Which hopefully is rich and balanced, our first play test is on Tuesday, by the way :).

But rather than a GM-published homebrew priest system, wouldn't it be nice something that took all that work was already included in the game? Not every GM who wants a priest subsystem has the game design ability, experience, or time to make one that works, feels good, and has a lot of flavor. The ITL talents essentially just delegate all that work to the customers.

We do know the game works without a priest system (we played for around 5 years without one) but that doesn't mean it's better off that way. And it also doesn't mean that people don't want or won't like one. I say make it part of the game and let GMs decide to disallow it like psionics if they want to.

I should also say that although my priest system has healing in it, it takes time (with one exception) and it's based on the Physicker rules, so I don't think it will turn TFT into D&D or WoW.
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Old 06-07-2018, 03:46 PM   #78
Skarg
 
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Default Re: priest and theologian

The converse though is that if the GM is using a published system, or lets everyone know what the powers of every religion are, then everyone knows, even people who shouldn't.

Of course GMs can change it, but many won't. If there are published religious powers, I'd suggest publishing a variety of examples of types.

In practice, what I do is reveal the information to players gradually.

If it's an interest that develops during play, the gathering of information and the choice to commit to study or not can be played out appropriately, which I think is nicely interesting and logical. It's happened in other areas as well, when PCs join guilds or other groups and then may get disappointed when they find out what's really offered and/or expected of them.

For character generation, that means we ask each other questions to determine if there's a match between their interests and what the religion is actually like. I start with commonly-available information about the religion, and ask them what sounds interesting or not about that, and they can ask for more details and so on. If there are some secrets that would best not be let out, I'll carefully not provide a solid answer, possibly even if they decide they do want to join.
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Old 06-07-2018, 10:32 PM   #79
zot
 
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Default Re: priest and theologian

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Originally Posted by Skarg View Post
Of course GMs can change it, but many won't. If there are published religious powers, I'd suggest publishing a variety of examples of types.

In practice, what I do is reveal the information to players gradually.
Er, just so I know we're on the same page, have you taken a look at my priest system? I only ask because I think it can address a lot of what you're saying. It also feels different IMO from other priest systems or magic and I think its simplicity lets it blend well into TFT (which is what I designed it for) without requiring extra attributes, points, etc.

Last edited by zot; 06-07-2018 at 11:08 PM. Reason: clarification
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Old 06-08-2018, 01:19 AM   #80
Skarg
 
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Default Re: priest and theologian

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Originally Posted by zot View Post
Er, just so I know we're on the same page, have you taken a look at my priest system? I only ask because I think it can address a lot of what you're saying. It also feels different IMO from other priest systems or magic and I think its simplicity lets it blend well into TFT (which is what I designed it for) without requiring extra attributes, points, etc.
Not yet, but I will take time to study it this weekend.
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