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RE: (TFT) word value

>> Breaking things down to smaller and smaller pieces to

>> see how they work is almost played out. coagulation

>> lies in our future. The ability to join small pieces

>> together and get a larger result."

> Doesn't this describe many changes in our society. I think

> I agree and it's just human nature to some degree. This

> happens with any set of rules. People get used to the

> rules as written and want to make them "better" so the

> usually add or provide more detail to spice things up.

> So what's to be done about it?


> Aidan

Here are 3 examples.

description (difficulty)

The double entendre (basic)

The community as enchantment (medium)

A sense of broken justice (complex)

The double entendre (basic)

   memetic formula: something = something.

     This is the approach of having zombies represent pollution, magic items
represent membership in the upper class, or a horse represent independence and
adulthood. These are just some examples. Take for instance the gold medal.
While it represents a triumph and an accomplishment in the face of fearce
competition, it can also represent the achievement of a bit of fame. Similarly
in TFT one can run a campaign where any possession of gold represents an
attendant level of fame.

     This motivates and enlivens almost every aspect of the rules. Now Dwarves
crave gold because they are status conscious, and thus probably will not take
insult lightly. One method of deployment could be that early in the game
almost no one is famous, and each land is know for the dragon that controls
and rules over it. I'm sure you see where this is going.

     But in your campaign it can stand for anything. Gold, and the possession
of it can stand for crime & evil, and the only way to cleanse it is to
liberate it and give it to the poor. Gold could also stand for the
responsibility of a military leader to his community of merchants, with you
and your soldiers guarding their every caravan and sea journey.
I trust you get the idea.

The community as enchantment (medium)

     memetic formula: something = something + somepeople.

     The motive for a community to come together and share their identity is
the magic item wielded by their leader. For instance a small mercenary force
around their captain who wields a +1 weapon with dark vision. Anyone who takes
possession of that weapon becomes the leader of that force. Conversely it is
not "just a +1 weapon with dark vision" but it is also a complete mercenary

     Each individual enchantment can tell it's own story by the people it is
made out of, and it is wizards who actually make all communities. A cursed
sword of possession that is tied to a gang of silver slimes. The wielder is
told where to go and who to kill by the silver slimes, who go along to blast
all opposition. An amulet vs drunkenness of hobbits. Where ever the wielder
goes hobbits show up insisting they "buy you a pint", or "slip off to the
tavern." Thus building up your tolerance.

     This is a little more difficult because matching the logic of the
enchantment to make up of the community is best done with a bit more planing,
where as a double entendre can be made up on the spot. Each enchantment has a
number of weeks to make, and a strength per week required. Consequently I
recommend one village per week required, with an adult population at least
that of the strength required. There is also consideration given to the
required components, if any.
I recommend that all enchantments currently being worked on be large outdoor
social events, news of which travels across the land. Old Mad Merlin is
building a dock and has

     called together ten captains, with their ships, something large is
brewing. Or, everyone around this town is an animal handler with tamed wolves.
The wizards guild here sells wolf gems. If you can survive the reaction rolls
to get in that is.

     Hopefully you can see the ramifications of this require a bit more
planning to deal with.

The sense of broken justice (complex)

     memetic formula: something = someplace + something + somepeople.

     This in not just a weapon armor enchantment, or a lesser enchantment.
These are the greater enchantments and the size an complexities of the
villages they are made of necessitate that they have a capitol city, sacred
grove, or field of glory where the ritual of receiving the new enchantment can
be performed.

     There is not enough space here to do this subject justice so I will just
represent it will some played out cliches and trust that you will see the
pattern. The symptom that the wizards guild is ready for a new leader is
usually played out by rumors and whispers. Also multiple complex enchantments
are detailed out in advance so if and when a player achieves an item they have
someone else to fight against.

     "Something is wrong in the land." "They say the king has gone mad."
"Everyone who enters the cursed sea is never heard from again." "Every year
the people land offer sacrifice to a demon." "Just as soon a merchant grows
beyond six wagons, a dragon shows up and devours him." I'll stop here
confident that you are familiar with this kind of campaign.
My island campaign of Branya is a magic ring of invisibility. It has four
other enchantments of great power. Every enchantment is self powered.
Consequently the island is populated by five entire cities, of very different
peoples. In twenty eight years of running the campaign only three people have
ever actually gotten to wear the ring.

     In order those are Opus the boat slayer, who was sent into pick up the
item by Glens Mohamed who was actually too terrified to pick it up himself.
Eric Akbe who murdered his way through prootwaddles to finally achieve it at
the behest of his patron demon. And Mr White who traveled through time gates,
defeated armies, developed his own chain of scroll factories to do it.

     I hope you are now having some ideas of your own.

     Now I have alluded to all of this before back in 2001. Ty Beard asked for
ideas for his Scifi TFT campagin Swords in space. He seemed to really love the
space port bar called "the belly ache" where some of the best of the old west
style brawls have erupted. The "Screaming Buddhists" an anti-terrorist
religion. Who get exp for taking damage. And "The Rabid Puppies" A street
gang, of young punks about 6-8 in age.


     As you can see, this approach makes for unforgettable role playing. Magic
items are fewer, but more powerful at the same time. Greater wizards a
community builders. And the GM always knows where every single magic item in
the game is, and it has word value.

David Michael Grouchy II

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