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Re: (TFT) a survey of Melee and Wizard editions

And I guess that's a pretty good summation of where I stand on the TFT rule
s.  (Sure, I've played CNA, and Advanced Squad Leader, and Fire in the
 East/Scorched Earth, so I know how complex rules CAN be).  I've also 
fenced as a sport, and I can tell you that 5 seconds can be an eternity som
etimes; but I don't feel like I have to account for every sword stroke in T
FT.  I think, in general terms, that 5 seconds is a pretty good passag
e at arms (e.g., an attack, a parry/disengage, a riposte, and a counter) an
d whoever gets the lucky roll actually scores on one of those moves.  
And for me, that's "close enough."

Mind you, there's absolutely nothing wrong with the folks who DO want to ac
count for every sword stroke!  More power to 'em, if that's their pref
erred method of play!  Vive la difference!  ;-)  I've even p
layed that way in other games (the original En Garde! comes to mind -- thou
gh I have no idea how the newest version stacks up against the old one...),
 so clearly it has some value for me too.
I'd love to see your "Cyrano de Bergerac" talent, though...  ;-)

      From: Edward Kroeten <ekroeten@farmersagent.com>
 To: tft@brainiac.com 
 Sent: Wednesday, March 16, 2016 12:49 PM
 Subject: Re: (TFT) a survey of Melee and Wizard editions
Hi Guys,



 I guess my take on Jeffrey's good enough theory is that TFT fits that mo
ld.  Think about it with 5 second turns parries and ripostes are assum
unless someone chooses the all out defensive posture of defend.  After
l any klutz can hit someone with a sword/ax/spear in 5 seconds if the oth
er person is also just hacking away.  The system works for the most pa
there are flaws but at the same time there is a lot of depth in the game 
with aimed shots, crippling blows, waiting for an opening and unusual wea



 Now if you want to go into super detail where combats can take an entire
 day or possibly more then TFT probably isn't the right fit.  Again us
 Jeffrey's example of how a person falls plays out; according to my own e
xperience and everything I have read (history) generally falling in comba
t means that you are meat.  Now of course there are instances where so
ne has survived but that just means that their opponent rolled a 16 or ab



 One thing that I do like that apparently Pvk doesn't is that usually you
 can guess how the combat will come out this is usually a realistic resul
t (i.e. a badly outnumbered party is going to lose).  So unless you ar
e u
sing some house morale rules a small party of 8-10 really good warriors c
an't wipe out a small town like Bendwin in ITL (they get swamped and kill
ed).  Yet at the same time a good warrior has a chance to defeat 2 tow
n g
uards.  If you want to play Cyrano de Bergerac or Scaramouche I have a
lent that I will post later that allows that type of character.  TFT i
s s
o flexible that it will adapt to whatever you want as long as you are wil
ling to go with good enough style of combat and let your imagination fill
 in the blanks.












                Edward Kroeten
                  Farmers Agen

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 ------ Original Message ------
  Received: 11:53 AM PDT, 03/16/2016
  From: Jeffrey Vandine <jlv61560@yahoo.com>
  To: "tft@brainiac.com" <tft@brainiac.com>
  Subject: Re: (TFT) a survey of Melee and Wizard editions




    This particular exchange raises an interesting point. To my m
ind (an
d I sin
      cerely doubt I'm being original here) there are two ki
nds of playe
rs -- the
      "completionist/realism/detail oriented guy (or gal)" w
ho WANTS rul
es for t
      hings like where people land when they fall so they ca
n get into t
he "meat"
      of realism in play; and the "play's the thing/'close e
nough'/ let'
s get on
      with the imagination guy (or gal)" who wants rules tha
t work well 
but are
      simple enough to learn and run in a few hours at most 
so they can 
get down
      to the "meat" of having an adventure.
      I think that's the only real dichotomy here.  We 
all, I think, fel
t th
      at TFT could have been made better, especially if Stev
e had stayed
      with it.  But our definition of "better" is where
 we hit our diffe
      t strides.  Personally, I focus more on improving
 mechanics for th
      like wilderness adventures and how to run town events 
and so on (m
ore of a
      GM's perspective, maybe?), where others want to massiv
ely re-work 
the nuts
      and bolts of combat or magic -- which seems a bit more
      Really, there's room for both of the types if we take 
a moment to 
      d where each of us is coming from.  For example, 
I really apprecia
te R
      ick posting all of the excellent food for thought he's
 been puttin
g up here
      lately (really, "re-posting" I guess), but at the same
 time, he's 
      g a problem that doesn't bother me as much as it does 
him, so I re
ad his st
      uff, and then say; "Hmm, that's interesting..." and th
en tend to g
o on back
      to MY stuff.  Once in a while, someone will post 
something that hi
      MY sweetspot and I'll get all enthusiastic about it; b
ut a lot of 
the rest
      of you come across somewhat negatively to that informa
tion (it's n
ot of int
      erest to you, and you make that clear -- not saying yo
u're "hostil
e" to it;
      I've never seen much hostility here), and so it kind o
f goes away 
after a
      As a recent example, I prefer to run with Wizard and M
elee as my b
asis (wit
      h only a few of the Advanced Wizard or Advanced Melee 
rules in pla
y at any
      given time), but someone (sorry, I forget who, now) ba
sically dema
nded to k
      now why anyone would think that was better.  I ch
ose the soft answ
er (
      much to the surprise of some who know me, no doubt) an
d simply sai
d "differ
      ent strokes for different folks" even though, frankly,
 I felt some
what "att
      acked" for not doing it the "right" way.  But tha
t just serves to 
      strate my point -- that person was firmly convinced th
at AW and AM
 were far
      better than the earlier versions, whereas I remain unc
onvinced; to
 me, sim
      pler is better and AW and AM merely focused on edge ca
ses (though 
with some
      notably useful exceptions in both) at considerable len
gth and incr
easing c
      omplexity.  Now, were I a "realist" player, I wou
ld be much more e
      siastic about all of that than I am -- but I tend more
 towards the
 "close e
      nough" kind of play, at least in my RPGs.  Maybe 
I spent too many 
      s as a wargamer arguing with rules lawyers about comma
 placement i
n the ove
      rrun rule to get much joy out of complexity any more.
  Heck, I hav
      touched Campaign for North Africa in thirty years, now
... ;-)

      Anyway, just thinking about what DMGII and PvK had to 



      From: Peter von Kleinsmid <pvk@oz.net>
      To: tft@brainiac.com
      Sent: Wednesday, March 16, 2016 8:49 AM
      Subject: RE: (TFT) a survey of Melee and Wizard editio

      Interesting. It is true I haven't very often read much
 ITL recentl
      but I nearly memorized it back when I ran campaigns wi
th it, but
      decades ago. I have a very good memory, but not so muc
h for word a
      phrase use. If we can run a count of pairs of words, t
hough, I thi
      "GM discretion" ought to appear a lot. ;-) My copy of 
ITL is worn
      soft like a broken-in shoe, and has plastic side tab l
abels I adde
      for quick reference (same for AM and AW). Cidri is my 
      favorite fantasy setting, and my actual favorite for g
eneric "let'
      do some fantasy gaming" setting. My original TFT campa
ign flows ou
      from the map of the Duchy of Dran in the back of ITL, 
stretching o
      several further maps in all directions until you need 
a fairly lar
      empty room to lay it all out (using the same 12.5km he
x map format

      and extending the map key).

      TFT was my first RPG (when I was 11), and remains one 
of my favori
      games, but after my friends and I had played it extens
ively for ab
      7 years, we could often predict how combats would play
 out, and we

      were more and more sensitive to the limitations, so th
at it starte
      to feel more like an abstract board game that wasn't s
atisfying in

      its representation of how violence might really play o
ut, so we
      started inventing new rules, and then GURPS came out a
nd covered
      everything we were trying to improve, but in a much mo
re elegant,
      playtested and complete and ready to use way (than our
 own rules).


      Many years later, from time to time I have also played
 TFT, and fo
      that I still like it but that I still think it's missi
ng several
      things (that I prefer and am sensitive to, which I kno
w not everyo
      is) from GURPS, but (I was surprised to find) that it'
s also possi
      to add fairly simple house rules that do some of the s
ame things i
n a
      fairly satisfying (to me) way.

      I think I'm just a detail&realism-oriented simulationi
st player, a
      that has me always looking for detailed realism-orient
ed rules. It

      was only about 4 years after switching from TFT to GUR
PS that I
      started adding all sorts of detailed house rules to GU
RPS, too. I
      also show up on GURPS forums and talk about details li
ke how I'm
      working on more detailed house rules for where charact
ers should l
      when they fall down, etc., and how 4e GURPS dumbed dow
n several
      things compared to 3e GURPS.

      I certainly don't read and participate here to be nega
tive. I didn
      realize I was rubbing anyone the wrong way. I don't me
an to be com
      across as saying "GURPS is better", and I think I rare
ly if ever s
      that. I think when I do mention GURPS, I'm trying to o
ffer somethi
      I think may be interesting or useful.



      At 07:26 AM 3/16/2016, David Michael Grouchy II wrote:
      >I'm sorry for delurking,  PvK always rubs me the
 wrong way.  For

      >instance; in the word-count-analysis of ITL, the word
 "will" is
      >ranked as the most frequently appearing at 590 occurr
ences.  The
      >book is full of phrases like "the GM will", "the Play
er will", et
      >But PvK asks "I wonder why 'will'? "  Causing me
 to wonder if he
      >has ever actually read ITL.  Which has now trigg
ered me.  As I h
      >always felt he was anti-TFT.  Like another contr
ibutor who's answ

      >was always "g.u.r.p.s. is better".
      >I have no stomach for a flame war with such hard head
ed negative
      >minded people.  I return to radio silence. 
 /grouchy's submarine

      >sinks back beneath the surface.
      >David Michael Grouchy II

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