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Re: (TFT) GURPS combat complexity etc.

On Sun, Jun 3, 2012 at 8:09 PM, PvK wrote:

> Sure. The merchant may not even want to go traveling with all his
> shipments, either. Many GM's handwave (or mindwave, or use some abstract
> system (example below), including encounters which don't directly involve
> the PC's, anyway.
Well abstract is okay I guess as I can't really speak to other campaigns
but I prefer to try gameable stuff if I can find a simple entertaining
model for what I want to introduce.

> Example:
> GM: "Hmm I rolled that a dragon met the caravan and no PC's are there,
> seems like I could just roll one die, and on a 1 or 2, the dragon drives
> off the guards and takes whatever it wants from the caravan, on 6, there is
> a battle, and on other results, there was a dragon but the guards stood
> their ground and the dragon flew off. If there's a battle, I'll roll a die
> and on a 1-3, the dragon wins and there are 1d-2 survivors, on a 4-5 the
> guards drive off the dragon with 1d-3 casualties, and on a 6 the guards
> killed the dragon and lost 1d-3 men."
Yep, TFT's publisher was the micro-game company after all and I figure if
no player Figures are around to hear the combat drop then a simple CRT
resolution works well, especially when a basic unit type can be "improved"
as a management decision (Alpha Centauri's units did a version of this).
Of course the RPG wrinkle in units is that groups of people don't move in
coordinated fashion on the map without a Figure with the Leadership Talent
in command.
So far the players who went for merchant chose to lead their caravans
Hiring Leaders is a similar issue to the buying a thoroughbred horse thing
I was talking about a couple of weeks ago.
Set Populations can answer questions like how many individuals in the
region meet the Job requirements but I see no reason to tell the employer
who exceeds the minimum requirements by the largest amount or to assure
them of the validity of the claims of any applicant really.
I'm trying to consider how to fairly deal with player tendency to take the
first NPC that fits the bill.
Not sure if it's table playable but then again if you don't go nuts then
you don't NEED a computer to play Life.

I was looking at the Dwarf Fortress forums and came across this little

"I want to share with you a quick note on a bug that I found vaguely
disturbing though: First, Ibm sure youbve learned by now that dwarves
like death. It leads to depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. Put
simply, if they see enough, they flip out and kill something b themselves
or those around them. However, certain dwarves are sociopaths. They lack
the natural emotional empathy and sensitivity of the proper dwarf. They
look just like every other dwarf b they act just like every other dwarfb&
yet, like Arnold Schwarzenegger in the Terminator, they are perfect little
emotionless machines. They make excellent butchers and fantastic soldiers.
I happened to get lucky and had one of these little soulless wonders as my
butcher. I have a policy of making newborn puppies and ponies available for
adoption and, if ponies are not adopted by the time they grow up, I send
them off to be knackered. It just so happens that I sent out my butcher to
round up the herd and thin the ranks one day. I saw bStray Horse (Tame) has
been struck down! Stray Horse (Tame) has been struck down! Krazen
Ergoblasbit (Tame) has been struck down!b

A sinking feeling hit me. The butcher had just grabbed the wrong horse.
Hebd somehow found someonebs pet and killed it. I expected a dwarf to go
crazy any minute. When I looked at the corpse, I saw that Krazen was marked
as being the pet of the Butcher.

I blinked. Hebd never owned a pet before. I checked his thoughts. He was
ecstatic. He had been comforted by a pet recently. He had adopted a pet
recently. The little bastard befriended and adopted the horse while leading
him to the block, improved his mood, killed him and had ZERO sense of
remorse, guilt or loss. He just didnbt care. Ibm starting to think about
waiting until hebs asleep, removing his door and replacing it with a
floodgate just to give the creepy bastard the Cask of Amontillado

It's hard not to grow a bit of a neckbeard reading that.
System generates story instead of bending to it.
I guess I'm becoming something of an old fuddy duddy these days but it
bothers me to have such a strong focus on killing.
I'm not saying get rid of combat or even changing it (much, who doesn't
have homebrew TFT rules?) but when your talking about a subject like
economics that is basically abstract in relation to TFT AM rules it's not a
great jump to look at games that are framed around economic principals for
something a little bit less abstract and a little more playable for
Of course spawning trade goods from a set of tables (mentions Traveler as a
major influence and I don't think it was the wireframe graphics they meant)
isn't avoiding the fact that the resources required to produce the goods
are being spawned but Traveler didn't have access to world-building game
map scripts to spit planets out with either.
Saying the currency is copper/silver/gold at some exchange rate isn't
economics unless you also describe how much copper/silver/gold there is and
how it's distributed in the region.
You can be abstract in conceiving the economic system but describing it
requires some concrete decisions.
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