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Re: (TFT) Masters of the Amulets

Guy McLimore <guymc@evansville.net> wrote:
> Joe Hartley at jh@metheny.brainiac.com on 11/8/98 6:58 PM said:
> >So how does it get done?  You have to rewrite the rules with an assumption
> >that there's a balance of power for the new technologies, whether that's
> >firearms, electricity, or super powers and abilities far beyond those of 
> >mortal men.  That can certainly be done, and done effectively.  There's
> >a SF variant of TFT that's outlined in Interplay #4, for example, that seems
> >very workable.
> Which is why I never understood the need for StarLeader. (Or UnderEarth, 
> for that matter.) 

I understand Lords of Underearth, which adds combat between companies to
TFT, but I agree about Dragons.  Was there really a need to simplify TFT?
Not really.  I agree that the change to simultaneous actions (losing the
adjDX attack sequencing) simplifies PBeM, but that had already been provided
for in AM.  In fact, as far as I could tell (without getting up and checking
the books - that's disturb the cat on my lap!), there were no real differences
between the Quick Combat system in AM and DoUE.

> I think Howard wanted to change TFT just to change it, 
> to get it away from Steve's vision. Don't get me started on Metagaming's 
> marketing mistakes...

Heh.  If I may spin off here, I think the SJ/HT rift bent HT somehow.  As
has been mentioned, the whole "Turkey" thing was not very nice.  In fact,
I just re-read Interplay #6 with the "Turkeyquest" micro-microquest and #1,
with the "letters" between Some Turkey and Red (John Gault) Darnigame, and
where I had skimmed them before, a re-reading shows some definite venom
there.  (I hadn't realized that Turkeyquest is unwinnable!  BTW, at the
risk of getting email from students of Objectivisim, I have to ask - who
is John Gault? (Red Darnigame)  The Darnigame name seems familiar, but I
can't place it.)

I have the feeling that it bothered HT that his flagship product was built
around SJ's games, and that he wanted to "purge" that from the line.  I
wasn't there, so I certanly don't know any of this for certain, but it
wasn't a direction that needed to be traveled.  Certainly AM/AW/ITL isn't
a terribly complex system when compared to AD&D, so why the simplification?
I think there were some gamers who didn't think TFT was "rich" enough, and
bypassed it (their loss).  So who was the simplification aimed at?  Beats

> One thing we were working on was a scaling system that would have let you 
> roll one die for every 10, or every 100. It seemed to work out pretty 
> well.

Wow - that would have been very nice to see.  If you can remember it, and
if you don't think it's infringement, I'm sure we'd all love to get this in
a bit more detail.

> It had it's limitations (many of which get addressed here daily), but 
> it's still a hell of an act to follow. I hope COMPACT COMBAT holds up as 
> well.

I actually got to play the beta a couple of weeks ago.  While it wasn't
much of a test, it was fun.  The only issue we found was the need for Strength
and/or Coordination minimums for the weapons - my guess it was a card design
problem rather than an omission in the system.  there's a few other minor
things that I intend on writing up if I can decipher my notes, which for
some mysterious reason get harder and harder to read as they progress.  It
must have been that evil Saranac spell that steadily affects Coordination :)

        Joe Hartley - jh@brainiac.com - brainiac services, inc
 PO Box 5069 : Greene, RI : 02827 - vox 401.539.9050 : fax 401.539.2070
  Without deviation from the norm, "progress" is not possible. - FZappa
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