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RE: (TFT) Variants = flavor of the age

I've always seen the TFT character creation system as the great equalizer.
Unlike D&D where the "luck of the draw" makes a huge difference in character
power [try playing a character with all 11s' v. a character with all 18s']
in TFT you may be faster, but he is smarter and she is stronger, depending
on player preferences.  This isn't necessarily realistic either, but I have
always preferred the level playing field.  It doesn't mandate that everyone
is the same, but that they start equal in their own way.

The big racial differences always made sense to me - they still leave a lot
of room for variation within a race but do seem to model the kind of real
differences we might see if for example centaurs were around.  A relatively
strong human might be stronger than a relatively weak centaur, but
portraying an average centaur as stronger than an average human seems
reasonable.  Since this planet only has one race [I am soooo not getting
into a discussion of dolphins right now], anything we come up with is going
to be guesswork and extrapolation anyway.  

I have made one major change to the races - Orcs havs starting ST 10, DX 8,
IQ 6 with 8 extra points.  I do not think Orcanthropus and Homo are
identical, and that difference better represents my view.  And Orcs heal a
natural 2 ST a day rather than the humans 1.  Makes up for the reaction

One of the many reasons that TFT is always the system I end up with is it's
incredible combination of flexibility and simplicity.  One can model pretty
much any culture, creature, law of metaphysics, etc., with a few simple die
rolls.  This is good.  Especially because having to break the mood by
hitting the reference books is not optimum.  

I consider the extra points to be genetic/environmental variation. As has
been pointed out before TFT is fairly abstract, so unless you are really
into backstories Thud the Barbarian might be strong but dumb because anyone
who wasn't didn't survive the tribe's initiation rites, or it might be
because so were his ancestors back umpteen generations.  On the other hand
Thad the Barbarian might be weak, but quick and smart, because he was an
orphan and starved through childhood and made up for it as best he could, or
because he is a reversion to the travelling pedlar who stayed a week with
the tribe 2 generations ago.



-----Original Message-----
From: tft-admin@brainiac.com [mailto:tft-admin@brainiac.com] On Behalf Of
David Michael Grouchy II
Sent: Thursday, September 11, 2008 3:07 PM
To: tft@brainiac.com
Subject: RE: (TFT) Variants = flavor of the age

> I'd say that the different races are empowered with different 
> statistics for
evolutionary and genetic reasons, not because they tend to work specific


> Yo, David!? You're being a total racist!? Where do the women fit in 
> your
picture?? Is there a homemaker based economy??


> Richard

   Last part first.  Obvious attempt at a reversal.  I raised the issue of
Race because I feel it should be addressed.  Further, TFT was the first game
to explicitly have male and female characters equal so you're second
addition is just clouding the waters.  I assume you are being funny.  Now
about the first line up there

>  statistics for evolutionary and genetic reasons

  This is precisely what I think should be jettisoned.  Having players
choose a Race under these conditions provides almost no opportunity for
creative interpretations.  It is an archaic straight jacket of the 18th
century and it is time for it to go.  How do we explain the 8 point
variation in starting MEN (mankind is a better word.)  Are those points
EDUCATION, SOCIAL STATUS, WEATH, LIFESTYLE?  What are they.  Do we mean to
continue with the 8 points as the normative spread of genetic variation?

David Michael Grouchy II

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