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#21 Donovan Morningfire

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Posted 24 January 2013 - 01:37 AM

LethalDose,

There's a difference between disagreeing and badgering.  Jay Little took time out of his (quite likely) very busy schedule to give folks a peek behind the screen as to what goes in developing a game.  I read your replies on the GSA website, and from their tone I give Jay plenty of credit for taking the time to respond to them with as much depth as he did.  But quite frankly, you came across as a needy, ungrateful internet troll.  And that's not me talking, that's several other folks, most of whom have never seen any of your posts here and thus had no preconcieved notions about what sort of person you were.

You're a math nerd.  Your group are math nerds. You've got a giant collective hard-on for math and analyzing things down to the most minute detail.  Fine, we get it.

But at the end of the day, FFG has decided the dice system they have in place works just fine and in accordance to what their objectives are, and in spite of all your protests and Skywalker-level whining about how the math doesn't work according to your extensive calculations, they aren't going to change it anytime soon.  And from the tone of many of your posts, both in the Beta forum before you decided to take a leave of absence (quite convienently on the same day the Beta feedback submission period ended), there's been little to suggest that you and your group actually enjoyed the game.

As for the lack of full disclosure that seems to be your latest sticking point, there is such a thing as trade secrets, something even Paizo and Evil Hat and WotC have.  Perhaps Jay isn't quite ready to pull the curtain all the way back just yet, if ever.  And given some of your responses when he did decide to offer up some insight, I wouldn't blame him if he choose to remain quiet on the subject going forward.


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#22 ynnen

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Posted 24 January 2013 - 02:42 AM

It is rare I ever post on our own threads, but I wanted to implore everyone to please keep this conversation and thread civil -- all around.

I was happy to share everything I have been able to share up to this point, especially to spend as much time as I have talking about EotE through various outlets like Order 66 and the GSA.

Unfortunately, the reality is I simply cannot talk about certain topics, or go into a level of detail many readers would like. For all the readers / fans / posters out there who have been disappointed or have wanted to learn more about Topic X over Topic Y, I really am sorry. I can (and generally do) share as much as I am able to, because I love the fan community and share the same passion for gaming that many of you do. 

And with that, let's please steer this discussion back on course lest we find ourselves in an asteroid field. And you know how slim the odds are for succesfully navigating one of those.


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#23 mouthymerc

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Posted 24 January 2013 - 03:32 AM

ynnen said:

Unfortunately, the reality is I simply cannot talk about certain topics, or go into a level of detail many readers would like. For all the readers / fans / posters out there who have been disappointed or have wanted to learn more about Topic X over Topic Y, I really am sorry. I can (and generally do) share as much as I am able to, because I love the fan community and share the same passion for gaming that many of you do. 

And with that, let's please steer this discussion back on course lest we find ourselves in an asteroid field. And you know how slim the odds are for succesfully navigating one of those.

"Sir, the possibility of successfully navigating an asteroid field is approximately 3,720 to 1!"

Appreciate the insight on what you can talk about.. Having been on both sides of the fence it is totally understandable that you may not be able to talk about everything. Doesn't stop me from wanting to pull that knowledge out though. Now if only I can get those pesky telepathic abilities working consistantly. Only been able to read my mind up to this point. And boy do I feel dirty now.


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#24 Donovan Morningfire

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Posted 24 January 2013 - 05:30 AM

ynnen said:

It is rare I ever post on our own threads, but I wanted to implore everyone to please keep this conversation and thread civil -- all around.

And with that, let's please steer this discussion back on course lest we find ourselves in an asteroid field. And you know how slim the odds are for succesfully navigating one of those.

Duly noted.

Especially as I seem to have left my tricked-out YT-1300 back at Anchorhead… something about needing to reverse the nuetron flow of the jelly baby or some-such reir


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#25 cparadis

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Posted 24 January 2013 - 05:47 AM

Personally, I'm glad Lethal Dose posts his thoughts on the game. I find them very interesting. I don't typically agree with his conclusions, but to date I have never once seen anyone prove him wrong regarding the math or the facts supporting his arguments. It really is just a difference in opinion regarding what conclusions to draw. For instance, one of the things I find most fascinating about the system is something that LD brings up. LD describes it as problematic  For me, the fact that net success and net advantage are inversely correlated strengthens story telling, in the way I like to tell tell stories. 

Success with advantage = Yes, and …

Success with threat = Yes, but …

Failure with advantage = No, but …

Failure with threat = No, and …

For my Star Wars games, I want to live mostly in the "Yes, but… " and "No, but …" space. For me personally, that's where drama lies, especially space opera drama like Star Wars. Yes, you blast the door, but you sabotaged the bridge controls … No,you aren't able to make it to safety,but a vision of old Ben suddenly appears …

So, Lethal Dose please do keep posting your ideas and comments. 


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#26 LethalDose

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Posted 24 January 2013 - 06:56 AM

Donovan Morningfire said:

 

LethalDose,

There's a difference between disagreeing and badgering.  Jay Little took time out of his (quite likely) very busy schedule to give folks a peek behind the screen as to what goes in developing a game.  I read your replies on the GSA website, and from their tone I give Jay plenty of credit for taking the time to respond to them with as much depth as he did.  But quite frankly, you came across as a needy, ungrateful internet troll.  And that's not me talking, that's several other folks, most of whom have never seen any of your posts here and thus had no preconcieved notions about what sort of person you were.

You're a math nerd.  Your group are math nerds. You've got a giant collective hard-on for math and analyzing things down to the most minute detail.  Fine, we get it.

But at the end of the day, FFG has decided the dice system they have in place works just fine and in accordance to what their objectives are, and in spite of all your protests and Skywalker-level whining about how the math doesn't work according to your extensive calculations, they aren't going to change it anytime soon.  And from the tone of many of your posts, both in the Beta forum before you decided to take a leave of absence (quite convienently on the same day the Beta feedback submission period ended), there's been little to suggest that you and your group actually enjoyed the game.

As for the lack of full disclosure that seems to be your latest sticking point, there is such a thing as trade secrets, something even Paizo and Evil Hat and WotC have.  Perhaps Jay isn't quite ready to pull the curtain all the way back just yet, if ever.  And given some of your responses when he did decide to offer up some insight, I wouldn't blame him if he choose to remain quiet on the subject going forward.

 

 

Well, I'm sorry that you have so much bile for me and my opposing view points.  But maybe watch how you depricate the term "math nerd", especially in this context.  If you don't see what I'm getting at, consider re-reading Jay's first article, starting with the title…

I'm also sorry that you have such distaste for my players, who you have never met, and as I've stated before, don't think you can judge.

Finally, and most regretful of all, I'm sorry that you have such a distaste for math and facts.  Fine, I'm a math nerd, because frankly, it's my job as an epidemiologist and biostatistican.  I use math to improve public health and understand complex systems.  The exact same tools can be used to improve the games we're all so passionate about.  Sometimes you need complex math to describe what's going on.  

You can choose to have a Ludditious view on the use of math and statistics to improve games, and that's your choice.  I can't see how you'd have a problem with better game systems being produced with your benefit, but /shrug.  If I see a designer who's voluntarily posting discussion on the use of math in the design, but making mistakes or unacknowledged over-simplifications, then… yeah, I'm gonna say something.  The same way my colleagues would ask questions in a presentation if I misintepreted results.

Simply, I want a bettter game.

I will always want a better game, no matter how good the current game is (EotE is GOOD!).  And I'm willing to use 'teh maths' to get it.

Again, this isn't antagonistic.  It's just a different point of view.

-WJL


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#27 Voice

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 09:46 AM

Sorry, Lethal, but you *are* antagonistic.  Whether you intend to be or not, it's consistently how you come across, and when someone calls you on it, you simply crank it up a few notches.



#28 LethalDose

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 12:11 PM

Voice said:

 

Sorry, Lethal, but you *are* antagonistic.  Whether you intend to be or not, it's consistently how you come across, and when someone calls you on it, you simply crank it up a few notches.

 

 

Well, since you've already labeled me as antagonistic, instead of the content/tone of my posts antagonisitic, you can't percieve anything I do/say/post as anything but antagonistic.  So trying to convince you otherwise would be as futile as trying to teach math to a troupe of screaming chimpanzees.

-WJL

 


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#29 djext1

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 12:46 PM

To those compaining about the lack of info in the article, and would rather hear more of the design ideas and what led to them, I would suggest listening to the Order66 podcasts that featured Jay Little. 


http://rpggeek.com/r...e-of-the-empire  This is the episode that Jay really gets into game the most I think and was really interesting to listen to.

http://rpggeek.com/r...e-edge-of-the-e  Another show featuring Jay with some great discussion about Edge.

 

Hope this helps some people get some more insight into the games development.


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#30 Droma

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 02:13 PM

I'm going to go with most of you are butt hurt that you can't argue at the same level as LD. As a free-lance dev there were some pretty glaring omissions and side tracking going on by Jay in how he handled questions in that article. I totally see why he had to answer certain questions the way he did because quite frankly giving the exact math and other things away would turn EotE into an OGL which it's not.

As far as math vs gut feeling in game design I think most devs find both equally necessary. In my experience you set a target number for any outcome you desire. Example: You want players to succeed on easy check 80% of the time. Then you figure out using math how to reach that desired number. Then you playtest the crap out of it and see what needs to change.

Final decisions tend to be based on “feeling” more than math though. Does this mechanic feel fun? If yes , then that mechanic is right no matter what the math says.



#31 mouthymerc

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 02:33 PM

Droma said:

 Does this mechanic feel fun? If yes , then that mechanic is right no matter what the math says.

I think this is what it boils down to. Number crunchers and linear thinkers may not enjoy it as much. Many, though, are enjoying results which are not just pass/fail.


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#32 Voice

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 04:26 PM

LethalDose said:

Voice said:

 

Sorry, Lethal, but you *are* antagonistic.  Whether you intend to be or not, it's consistently how you come across, and when someone calls you on it, you simply crank it up a few notches.

 

 

Well, since you've already labeled me as antagonistic, instead of the content/tone of my posts antagonisitic, you can't percieve anything I do/say/post as anything but antagonistic.  So trying to convince you otherwise would be as futile as trying to teach math to a troupe of screaming chimpanzees.

-WJL

 

And that's a perfect example of how you double-down when someone calls you on your behavior.  It's an easily observed behavioral pattern, and I'm *not* the only person who has called you on it, and seen the behavior continue, repeat and scale up.



#33 oatesatm

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 06:43 PM

Our group is fairly new to the RPG arena, we started with the Saga Edition a few years ago, so we don't have the background of years within a gaming system.  We really enjoyed the Saga Edition and still do, but I can also see now that we've picked up EotE, the variety that this dice system can create.  It does put more importance on both the GM (especially the GM) and the players to use their imagination on the fly since it leaves things quite a bit more open-ended then simply exceeding a difficulty check arbitrarily … but also when making a decisions in general.  I like it but it will definitely take some getting used to.  

 

For example … in the Dawn of Defiance campaign of the Saga Edition, the first 'opponent' you're introduced to is the station's central computer system.  What you are told about it is: "The station’s central computer system has an Intelligence of 14 and a Will Defense of 17."  From that, based on your character, you can get a pretty good idea of what your chances are to hack the computer.  What I like about the EotE system is that it simulates the different environments a player might be in when trying to accomplish that task.  It's one thing to try to take your computer expert and hack the computer in the privacy of one's own room, but it would be another thing if that same player were trying to hack the computer in a public area trying to find an alternate escape route while being hunted down by a bunch of Stromtroopers.

 

Technically, LethalDose is correct in that each of those scenarios have an inherent "odds" to either pass or fail the task, and if I understand him correctly, he'd like to know what those chances are and to have that accurately reflected in the dice.  It can be a bit convuluted with this system as opposed to something such as D20 where you are dealing primarily with numbers.  I persoanlly think it will make things fun for our group, and that is how we measure a game, even if perfect percentages are not met … although I can also see the downside if one's group really enjoys the number crunching of an adventure.

 

 



#34 LethalDose

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 06:55 PM

Voice said:

LethalDose said:

 

 

Well, since you've already labeled me as antagonistic, instead of the content/tone of my posts antagonisitic, you can't percieve anything I do/say/post as anything but antagonistic.  So trying to convince you otherwise would be as futile as trying to teach math to a troupe of screaming chimpanzees.

-WJL

 

 

 

And that's a perfect example of how you double-down when someone calls you on your behavior.  It's an easily observed behavioral pattern, and I'm *not* the only person who has called you on it, and seen the behavior continue, repeat and scale up.

I said that because you made it clear there's nothing I could say to change your mind, so yes, I mocked it.  The only reason you should be offended by that  post is if you are, in fact, a chimp is that is good at math.

Though in all seriousness, I should apologize for that post.

I did not mean to offend any chimps that post on these forums, whether they be members of howling troupes or not.  Additionally, I sincerely apologize to anyone who has family members or friends who are chimpanzees, bonobos, gorillas, or other species of ape.  I posted that in haste and frustration and truly regret that a perputuated the unfair stereotypes that any of these noble apes are, as a group, computationally challenged.

 

Anyway, regarding more intellectual comments,

 

Droma said:

I'm going to go with most of you are butt hurt that you can't argue at the same level as LD. As a free-lance dev there were some pretty glaring omissions and side tracking going on by Jay in how he handled questions in that article. I totally see why he had to answer certain questions the way he did because quite frankly giving the exact math and other things away would turn EotE into an OGL which it's not.

As far as math vs gut feeling in game design I think most devs find both equally necessary. In my experience you set a target number for any outcome you desire. Example: You want players to succeed on easy check 80% of the time. Then you figure out using math how to reach that desired number. Then you playtest the crap out of it and see what needs to change.

Final decisions tend to be based on “feeling” more than math though. Does this mechanic feel fun? If yes , then that mechanic is right no matter what the math says.

I completely agree with everything Droma said here.  If you go back and read the first sentence of my first post on this site, I stated I was looking at the math because it seemed that there was something wrong or off with the dice results.  There were 2 primary issues:

  1. Suspiciously low success proportions on pools with several proficiency dice.
  2. Failed rolls with large numbers of advantage

My players were particularly confused about the latter of the issues, to the point where they said it didn't feel fun (see also response #17 in that same thread).  It should be noted that we were not the only ones to notice #2 by far.  So I busted out the maths to figure out what was going on.  I didn't go after this beecause I was bored, or trying to break the game, I was trying to figure out what was wrong with the dice.  I shared what I found, and tried to get some more information when devs posted some responses that were too cryptic to be informative.

Since then, Jay's made it clear that he's got his hands full with design responsibilities and therefore can't post on these board or personally respond to the vast majority of comments here.  That's cool.  And I think it's all that needs to need be said about it.

I'm here for critical discourse.  There are some posters here who can handle that and comprehend that dissention or criticism is not the same as antagonism.

Other's can't.

-WJL


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#35 LethalDose

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 07:43 PM

oatesatm said:

Technically, LethalDose is correct in that each of those scenarios have an inherent "odds" to either pass or fail the task, and if I understand him correctly, he'd like to know what those chances are and to have that accurately reflected in the dice.  It can be a bit convuluted with this system as opposed to something such as D20 where you are dealing primarily with numbers.  I persoanlly think it will make things fun for our group, and that is how we measure a game, even if perfect percentages are not met … although I can also see the downside if one's group really enjoys the number crunching of an adventure.

So, I'm going to respond to oatesatm, because it's a chance for a clarification about where my issue with the dice comes from.  First, you're dealing with numbers in both places, the numbers just have partially different interpretations.

Second, my group does not need, or even neccessarily want, to be able to understand every detail of the math produced by the dice to enjoy a game.  If this were true, I have some players who simply could never enjoy any roleplaying game because they suck at math, and would be the first to tell you that.  This is the reason why online personalities who have never met them calling them math nerds is preposterous.

However!

If something doesn't feel right with the game… If bonuses that are presented as larger or more effective than other bonuses don't seem actually provide those bonuses, we DO ask why!

Especially in a Beta, because that's we're beta testing!

So the math was explanatory and exploratory to figure out what if there even was a problem.  I wasn't doing math to find a problem I hadn't already noticed.

If future players pick up the game, with any level of experience with RPGs, these disconnects between the presented payout and empirical experience are going to cause the groups to get frustrated and give up on the game.  Really, we should be striving to be as inclusive as possible by making games as approachable as possible, and this dice mechanic was getting in the way.

-WJL

 


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#36 Droma

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 09:21 PM

mouthymerc said:

Droma said:

 

 Does this mechanic feel fun? If yes , then that mechanic is right no matter what the math says.

 

 

I think this is what it boils down to. Number crunchers and linear thinkers may not enjoy it as much. Many, though, are enjoying results which are not just pass/fail.



I think you are misinterpretting me slightly. This doesn't actually have to do with pass/fail vs non-pass/fail results as each does not relate to the other in this instance. For example simply replacing the blanks on ability/prof. dice with success marks would increases the chances of you passing any particular roll without reducing the chance for for advantage/threat.

What Lethal Dose and his group seem to be refering to from my understanding of the discussion, is that you don't seem to pass noticably more often even if you gain an ability die or upgrade an ability die to a proficiency die. They felt that something was wrong about the dice. LD then did the math to see just how much benefit you're really getting when you increase your skill/ability and thought it should be higher then presented that information to the board. I haven't seen those threads so I can't say how antagonistic he may have or have not been in those posts but from what I've seen in this thread people are just bashing him and basically calling him and his group math/nerd assholes because they can't make a reasoned discussion about why he may be wrong.

I've been a GM on forums for large MMO games in the past, he'd likely get a warning for flame baiting/trolling but the rest of you would probably get suspensions for active harrasement.



#37 oatesatm

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 03:38 AM

LethalDose said:

So, I'm going to respond to oatesatm, because it's a chance for a clarification about where my issue with the dice comes from.  First, you're dealing with numbers in both places, the numbers just have partially different interpretations.

Sorry, I should have clarified a bit better … I do realize that even the icons present an odds.  The convuluted comment was more of my description on how those odds are interpreted, that they are not so cut and dry as straight numbers when interpreting the result.

 

LethalDose said:

 


Second, my group does not need, or even neccessarily want, to be able to understand every detail of the math produced by the dice to enjoy a game.  If this were true, I have some players who simply could never enjoy any roleplaying game because they suck at math, and would be the first to tell you that.  This is the reason why online personalities who have never met them calling them math nerds is preposterous.
 
 
I hope I didn't come across that way to you.
 
 

LethalDose said:

If something doesn't feel right with the game… If bonuses that are presented as larger or more effective than other bonuses don't seem actually provide those bonuses, we DO ask why!

Especially in a Beta, because that's we're beta testing!

So the math was explanatory and exploratory to figure out what if there even was a problem.  I wasn't doing math to find a problem I hadn't already noticed.

If future players pick up the game, with any level of experience with RPGs, these disconnects between the presented payout and empirical experience are going to cause the groups to get frustrated and give up on the game.  Really, we should be striving to be as inclusive as possible by making games as approachable as possible, and this dice mechanic was getting in the way.

 

I think I see what you mean, playing with the dice roller I've been putting together … after hitting the roll button an inordinate number of times, there does seem to be little difference between the successes advantages whether I put in, for example, GGGG compared to GYYY.  Especially since it is a "Proficiency" die, at least giving the impression that it would make success easier, not simply just provide some sort of advantage, even in failure.

 

The mechanic is, however, intertwined with other aspects of the game, such as how advantages contribute to critical hits … so I'm not really sure how to fix it.  Maybe just turn the blanks on the proficiency dice to either a success or success/success (and do the same on the challange dice as well, possibly).  Problem is, I don't have any background data to determine whether our not that would really mess things up in the other direction.

 



#38 LethalDose

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 05:37 AM

@oatesatm

No, you didn't come across as offensive or problematic at all.  That comment about 'math nerds' was explicitly addressing a comment by someone else.  Scan up through the posts and you should see what I meant without too much difficulty.  And again, I just took your post as a chance to make some clarifications.

@Droma

Nail, head, hitting, etc.  Got nothing to add, other than "Thank You".

-WJL


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