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Re: (TFT) Man To Man & GURPS - was Re: (TFT) The return of Ogre - Rick did something silly.

What I got out of the article is that the author is a big Steve Jackson fan
 (so am I, naturally), and somehow feels that credit for RPG fun is a zero-
sum game where someone's reputation can only be supported by detracting fro
m someone else's.  Sure D&D could be the Orc Holocaust, but then, so coul
d GURPS -- it's all about how you want to play and what kind of show your G
M puts on.

My brother and I started with Empire of the Petal Throne (a
ctually, being hardcore wargamers, we thought it was some weird new wargame
 when we first picked it up, only to be disabused of that notion when we st
arted figuring out the rules), and NONE of our games were EVER hack and sla
sh -- even though we started out in the Jakallan underworld tomb-crawling p
aradigm.  Both of us took turns creating and running dungeons for each ot
her, and his work was always a severe mental challenge with lots of psychol
ogical puzzles to figure out, interspersed with a bit of combat here and th
ere, whereas mine were always highly challenging trap labyrinths, with a li
ttle bit of combat sprinkled here and there.  In both our cases, the comb
ats always made "sense" in terms of the tomb we were creating -- never an o
rc mommy and baby to be seen (or slaughtered).  Even when we picked  up
 the D&D white box a year or so later, we never did any of that nonsense --
 the orcs and
 hobgoblins and such like were always war parties or individual champions w
ho had a REASON to be there.

I don't think either one of us was into o
rc-village atrocities.  As we expanded our role-playing into other groups
 and went on with our lives, neither one of us ever reported that sort of t
hing to each other when we talked about the stuff we were doing.  And no 
one in my RPG groups ever got into it either.  The bottom line is that "R
PG-ing" is pretty much what you make of it, and the rules don't really enco
urage (or discourage, for that matter) that sort of play.  I'm pretty sur
e I'd remember if Gygax ever published anything that said it was a positive
 good to dismember babies, just as I'm pretty sure Steve didn't say that an
ywhere either.  If I have a player who thinks its funny to break into an 
orc kindergarten and kill the orc toddlers, I'm pretty much going to treat 
him or her like any other terrorist who would do such a thing.  In game t
erms, that means that the entire orc nation will probably be hunting that c
haracter with one goal in life --
 to butcher him/her like a dog.  Just as that character would deserve. 
 In games with "good" and "evil" aspects, such an action would certainly 
count as "evil" in my book.

Let's face it -- D&D WAS the first of it's
 kind in terms of widespread public access, and sure, the rules are clunky 
and the system is badly dated, especially in terms of how experience points
 were assessed, but things like GURPS were built on that foundation, and ha
ve substantially improved the genre, but wouldn't have existed (at least in
 the form they take) without Gygax and Arneson breaking trail for them.  
To condemn them for being clunky is the same as saying, "Gee, those Wright 
Brothers sure screwed up that airplane of theirs -- take a look at this F-2
2 and then tell me the Wright Flyer was an achievement!"  

 From: gem6868 <gem6868@verizon.net>
To: tft
Sent: Friday, August 1, 2014 12:02 PM
Subject: Re: (TFT)
 Man To Man & GURPS - was Re: (TFT) The return of Ogre - Rick did something

dang, pretty harsh.  While I do vaguely remember that fi
ghting was an 
important part of D&D when we played it in the 80s, I dist
inctly remember 
that the rest of life was there, too, including negotiat
ing, etc.  I think 
the Fineous Fingers cartoon was a pretty good sendu
p of the D&D violence, as 
they attacked pretty much everything, includin
g harmless peasants from whom 
they asked directions.

That being sai
d, in late high school and early college, we did end up 
playing GURPS, e
ntirely at the motivation of one of our more creative 
geniuses, who even
 had himself in his story as a slightly deranged NPC. 
Those were some go
od times.

As the author notes, GURPS allows the GM to give ExPts for w
hatever is "good 
play" and I think lots of people noted that long ago in
 D&D.  But I guess 
the game's design is still something to kick around

-----Original Message----- 
From: De Des
Sent: Friday, August 01
, 2014 2:20 PM
To: tft@brainiac.com
Subject: Re: (TFT) Man To Man & GUR
PS - was Re: (TFT) The return of Ogre - 
Rick did something silly.

uch.  I remember when I was 11 or 12 years old playing DnD with the high

school kids at the library; they were wanting actual role-playing, and I

had my 9th level ranger with an intelligent vorpal bastard sword and my

natural 18/00 strength (naturally) - I think the sword and I both had

psionics - I kept getting switched to different groups, until finally I got

stuck with a group of kids who were arguably even worse than I was.
terally, every game ended with them whipping their brightly-colored
edral dice at each other and screaming obscenities, then rolling
around t
he floor in a general brawl.  I did a little soul-searching after
  My playing and my GM-ing improved.  I still had my lapses, but I
arted seeing the value in characters who had flaws, and who sometimes
n't win.  So maybe the kill-'em-all guy came around too ... that is a
ind of awesome "teaching moment" though.

On Fri, Aug 1, 2014 at 11:
35 AM, Joe Hartley <jh@brainiac.com> wrote:

> On Fri, 1 Aug 2014 11:05
:36 -0400
> De Des <denisdesharnais@gmail.com> wrote:
> > It helps 
avoid the "hobgoblin holocaust"
> > effect.
> >
> >
> http://www.sl
> I liked this article, it explains to me why D&D never clicked 
with me.
> While none of us are above a quick little dungeon crawl just f
or kicks,
> the kill-em-all attitude wears real thin.
> One thing I
 remembered last night was that at one point in my gaming
> group in high
 school, we realised the GM could deduct XP as well as
> grant them.  T
hat stupid move where you pressed the jolly, candy-like
> button
> and 
sprung the should-have-been-obvious trap?  Yeah, you lose a bunch of
points for that.
> We had a new guy come in once and he just killed e
verything in sight.
> The GM improvised and had the party show up in a nu
rsery.  Weapon comes
> out,
> monster baby parts flying everywhere bu
t then oops! human babies in these
> cradles, slashed to bits, followed b
y the arrival of (roll 2d-2) 8
> policemen
> who quickly drag him away.
  The rest of the evening was spent playing
> "Police attempt to transp
ort the Graniteville Babykiller safely to gaol."
> I can't remember h
is character's original name, he became Babykiller and
> it stuck.  Thi
s guy got more and more PO'ed as the evening went on and
> left before hi
s character actually died, because the NPC townspeople were
> leaving off
 before actual death, and just beating the tar out of him, then
> force-f
eeding him healing potions so they could beat the snot out of him
> again
> It turned into one of the most interesting nights of gaming ever,
> there were some really good twists thrown in and the main party had
> very interested situations, but the new guy was screwed because h
> wouldn't
> get out of that kill-everything POV.
> --
>   Joe Hartley - UNIX/network Consultant - jh@brainiac.com
>  Without 
deviation from the norm, "progress" is not possible. - FZappa
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