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Missed opportunity I think...


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#41 dholda

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 03:29 AM

 

As much as I love cards and chits and tokens and bits and bobs, I agree with you on that point MorioMortis.  However, I'm talking specifically about the dice mechanic - Narration System, or whatever FFG is calling it.  What began with WFR3 and was refined with EotE.  I think it would be a perfect opportunity to present the 40K setting much like Star Wars is being presented.  They could rework the whole shebang again only with the beautiful dice mechanic they've created.  I don't particularly care about backwards compatibility because 1) I hate d100 systems and 2) setting material will always be compatible.  Anyway, I was simply lamenting and curious if anyone else had the same disappointment.

 

I hate d100 too. I converted DH1 to my version of d10 mechanic and my players like it. I think I'll do the same with DH2. The conversion is really easy so I'm not complaining that much on DH2 being d100. The idea is you throw that many d10 dice as your Char mod and you are using your skill to decrease the default diff of 8. I can go into more details about it if anyone is interested.

Having said, that I would welcome narrative dice in DH2 with Chaos Star and Emperor's blessing as Light and Dark Side points from EotE. Although I have a feeling a lot of people would mark it as yet another system from FFG using their funny dice.

To sum it up I'm happy they do DH2 and they are trying new and interesting ideas without going too radical i.e. WFRP3ed.


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#42 dholda

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 03:39 AM

Problem is that the Star Wars RPG system assumes that you are a rag tag band of hero's fated to defy the powers that be. While I love it, it is not very close to the feel of 40k. In DH you are a fairly normal person (for 40k any how) who is pure enough, skilled enough, or just expendable enough to serve an inquisitor. Like the back of the first edition book says, no one will know what you are doing to protect the Imperium. The wicked and the good, the poor and the rich, the corrupted and the pure, all owe you their lives but will never know your name. You are a nearly nameless agent in a shadow war within an organization that often fights itself. You are the thin and fragile human armor that breaks when it stops the bullet aimed at civilization's heart. It is not meant to be an action hero like existence. You are meant to die or get hurt when you take a bullet. Or when the terrible insectoid monster drops on you from the ceiling and injects you with venom. Or when a daemon possesses your psyker friend and causes him to explode into a portal that radiates warp stuff that melts you into goo, as you hear daemons clamor their way through the still living portal. Or the necron wraith phases through a wall and rends your body. Sure you can survive these things, that is what Fate points are for. But you are always marked by them, always damaged. Maybe just physically, maybe mentally, maybe your very soul will be tainted. And the only true reward you can look forward to is that when you die, your name and deeds will be whispered to a cadaverous man on a golden throne that barely keeps him alive, who is worshiped as a god by trillions. That is why I like the original system: It is brutal, it is in its own way heroic without losing site of the how fragile a human being is. It is rather unforgiving. But it fits the feel of the setting better than a more cinematic game like the Star Wars RPG.

 

I would like to disagree. The book says that PCs aren't just an average Joes. They are cut above the masses as only exceptional characters will server Inquisitors as Acolytes. This invalidates your statement.

PCs in DH are exceptional hence the Fate Points system. The difference is however their destiny against EotE characters’ destinies. DH PCs' future is grim dark and most likely they will die in some Emperor's forgotten place but they will die trying to save Humanity. That's pretty heroic in my book.


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#43 cogollo

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 03:58 AM

I think FFG missed an excellent opportunity to rework Dark Heresy with the Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay/Edge of the Empire dice mechanics.  Alas.

 

I agree with the original poster here. My group has been using the dice mechanics of Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay (and now Edge of Empire) since that game was published and it has been a blast for us. We have played many scenarios in different settings (Warhammer Fantasy, medieval Europe, modern Afghanistan, Star Wars, now planning a horror sci-fi and an Old West adventures)... the dice mechanics is really really cool, and very easy and intuitive to understand... It looks much more complex in paper than in real gaming... About the cards and tokens, they are very cool and add a lot of options to the game, but you don't need to play with them, so this should not be a problem.

 

In between the above games, I run several sessions of Deathwatch for my players and the d100 system seems clunky in comparison... I used to love the d100 system (played a lot of Call of Cthulhu, Warhammer 2 and some Dark Heresy back in the day) and preferred it over the d20 system (we have played a lot of both Pathfinder and D&D4), but still felt clunky compared with the new dice mechanics.

 

In summary, the mathematics of d100 (and d20 and d6 games) get in the way of the narrative. They are cool mechanics for tactics heavy games, but they disrupt story flow... People start looking at their statistics and making too many calculations in their minds and that disrupts play... In comparison, with the new mechanics you just know you are better at some skills and worse at others, but you don't have an exact comparison value: exactly as life works, so it's easier to get into the narrative.

 

 

On the other hand, I fully understand FFG's choice here: they want to cater to a broader fan base and they have already published two very innovative games (Warhammer 3 and Edge of the Empire) and I guess they want to go this time in waters already explored, so that's completely understandable... I hope they would have the resources to also publish a version of the game with the new dice mechanics, but I understand we are in a world with finite resources...

 

Don't know, maybe they could do a Kickstarter and hire some freelance designer (or clone Jay Little? :P I think he is a genius game developer) to publish a conversion of DH2 with the new dice mechanics? My hopes is that they decide in the future to make a Warhammer Fantasy 4 with a new mechanics that takes into account what they have learned these past years (Edge of the Empires dice mechanics is even better than Warhammer 3).


Edited by cogollo, 21 August 2013 - 04:01 AM.

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Hur-Nir ran to the aid of the beaten man, recovering in the process a handful of pennies the thugs had let fall in the man's boots during their hasty retreat. - from Nulner Blues campaign

 


#44 borithan

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 06:26 AM

I hate d100 too. I converted DH1 to my version of d10 mechanic and my players like it. I think I'll do the same with DH2. The conversion is really easy so I'm not complaining that much on DH2 being d100. The idea is you throw that many d10 dice as your Char mod and you are using your skill to decrease the default diff of 8. I can go into more details about it if anyone is interested.

Erg... I generally really don't like "success count" systems. The WFRP one is an honourable exception, but ironically (given I am actually ok with the wiff prone linear probabilities of the 40k rpg system) I generally find them unsatisfying random. I don't know why... maybe I am more ok with wiffing on linear probability rolls than in success count systems. It seems more transparent or something.



#45 illathid

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 03:32 PM

Problem is that the Star Wars RPG system assumes that you are a rag tag band of hero's fated to defy the powers that be. While I love it, it is not very close to the feel of 40k. In DH you are a fairly normal person (for 40k any how) who is pure enough, skilled enough, or just expendable enough to serve an inquisitor. Like the back of the first edition book says, no one will know what you are doing to protect the Imperium. The wicked and the good, the poor and the rich, the corrupted and the pure, all owe you their lives but will never know your name. You are a nearly nameless agent in a shadow war within an organization that often fights itself. You are the thin and fragile human armor that breaks when it stops the bullet aimed at civilization's heart. It is not meant to be an action hero like existence. You are meant to die or get hurt when you take a bullet. Or when the terrible insectoid monster drops on you from the ceiling and injects you with venom. Or when a daemon possesses your psyker friend and causes him to explode into a portal that radiates warp stuff that melts you into goo, as you hear daemons clamor their way through the still living portal. Or the necron wraith phases through a wall and rends your body. Sure you can survive these things, that is what Fate points are for. But you are always marked by them, always damaged. Maybe just physically, maybe mentally, maybe your very soul will be tainted. And the only true reward you can look forward to is that when you die, your name and deeds will be whispered to a cadaverous man on a golden throne that barely keeps him alive, who is worshiped as a god by trillions. That is why I like the original system: It is brutal, it is in its own way heroic without losing site of the how fragile a human being is. It is rather unforgiving. But it fits the feel of the setting better than a more cinematic game like the Star Wars RPG.


While that is certainly true, I think it has little to do with the dice resolution mechanic used. One could easily have a very brutal game with narrative dice or extremely cinematic game with d100's. As such, I don't really get what you're trying to say.

I agree. The d100 system is pretty horrible in terms ease of use and accessibility to new players. While I love WFRP 3e, I agree that keeping the cards and chits out of it is a good idea. Or if you do have them, make it optional. Just my two cents.

 
D100 ist the best system for experienced gamemasters, as it allows for easy and direct calibration of skill test difficulties. An average user with a skill of 50% would succeed that particular task only in 30% of cases? Okay, I'll put a -20 on the test for the player. 

And that highlights the difference between the d100 and a narrative system. The d100 is purely based on success or failure of a given task, while a narrative system allows for more outcomes. The ones I find most interesting in play are the the "you succeed, but something bad happens" and "you fail, but something good happens." I've those to make the actual table play much more interesting.
 

There is nothing difficult or inaccessible about using a d100 for new players. I have yet to meet a single player (or player's girl-friend) who has failed to grasp the concept after a short explanation. Even players with low school qualifications and no sympathy for mathematics had no problems with it.
 


The problem I've seen new players face with is calculating degrees of success. While the concept is not difficult, the actual mechanics as they work out play can be. Subtraction is a harder math to accomplish than addition. And maybe it's just my group, but counting symbols usually is easier to do than subtracting X from Y to determine degrees of success.

#46 MaliciousOnion

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 09:58 PM

And that highlights the difference between the d100 and a narrative system. The d100 is purely based on success or failure of a given task, while a narrative system allows for more outcomes. The ones I find most interesting in play are the the "you succeed, but something bad happens" and "you fail, but something good happens." I've those to make the actual table play much more interesting.


I don't see why a d100 system would preclude a GM from doing this. In fact, I'd suggest that a good GM would do this anyway. Say your techpriest fails his Security roll to open the Armoury door by 1 DoS; instead of just flat failing to open the door, the GM rules that the door opens but an alarm is accidentally tripped. Sure, it might mean a bit of work for the GM but no more than it would for narrative dice.

Perhaps that's what FFG should add to the rules - how to not stonewall your players when they fail a test.
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#47 cogollo

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Posted 22 August 2013 - 12:35 AM


I don't see why a d100 system would preclude a GM from doing this. In fact, I'd suggest that a good GM would do this anyway. Say your techpriest fails his Security roll to open the Armoury door by 1 DoS; instead of just flat failing to open the door, the GM rules that the door opens but an alarm is accidentally tripped. Sure, it might mean a bit of work for the GM but no more than it would for narrative dice.

 

 

You are right here, the GM could do it, but still the dice mechanics do not suggest doing it, and so this type of very interesting situations happen less often in d100 or d20 games than in narrative games. At least, that's what I've seen in my gaming experience.

 

Another advantage of the narrative system is that the dice are also suggesting this kind of situations to the players. Once the players start interpreting their own rolls, you as a GM get access to a lot more ideas for interpretation of the die rolls.

 

A last advantage of a dice pool narrative mechanic is that each roll tells you much more than just a success-failure with DoS. The roll will give you a succes-failure with DoS plus another success-failure with DoS in a second perpendicular axis, plus information on where the successes and failures came from.


Edited by cogollo, 22 August 2013 - 12:35 AM.

Hur-Nir ran to the aid of the beaten man, recovering in the process a handful of pennies the thugs had let fall in the man's boots during their hasty retreat. - from Nulner Blues campaign

 


#48 illathid

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Posted 22 August 2013 - 06:19 AM

I don't see why a d100 system would preclude a GM from doing this. In fact, I'd suggest that a good GM would do this anyway. Say your techpriest fails his Security roll to open the Armoury door by 1 DoS; instead of just flat failing to open the door, the GM rules that the door opens but an alarm is accidentally tripped. Sure, it might mean a bit of work for the GM but no more than it would for narrative dice.Perhaps that's what FFG should add to the rules - how to not stonewall your players when they fail a test.


Yes, I've thought of adding something like that to the current system as well. However, since narrative dice track on different axes, as cogollo mentions, you can have have more varied results. As such you can get results of "you succeed, and something else good happens" and "you fail, and something else bad happens" (or even just plain success or failure with no added effects) in addition to the outcomes I mentioned above.

You are right here, the GM could do it, but still the dice mechanics do not suggest doing it, and so this type of very interesting situations happen less often in d100 or d20 games than in narrative games. At least, that's what I've seen in my gaming experience.
 
Another advantage of the narrative system is that the dice are also suggesting this kind of situations to the players. Once the players start interpreting their own rolls, you as a GM get access to a lot more ideas for interpretation of the die rolls.
 
A last advantage of a dice pool narrative mechanic is that each roll tells you much more than just a success-failure with DoS. The roll will give you a succes-failure with DoS plus another success-failure with DoS in a second perpendicular axis, plus information on where the successes and failures came from.


Yeah, which is all pretty cool. The other thing too is this could be potentially balanced for different atmospheres as well, if you wanted a more "hopeless" feel to your game. For instance, you could balance standard success/failure rates to limit the "whiff" factor people seem to hate so much while having the additional effects balanced much more towards getting negative effects rather than positive ones.

Can you tell I really like narrative dice systems? The One-Roll Engine is pretty cool too, but I haven't spent nearly enough time with it to really know its strengths and weaknesses.

#49 MaliciousOnion

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Posted 22 August 2013 - 07:28 AM

You are right here, the GM could do it, but still the dice mechanics do not suggest doing it...


I don't get it. This is entirely the point of Degrees of Success/Failure. The more DoS you get, the better you do. The more DoF you get, the worse you do. I would argue that it's more straightforward and more flexible than a bunch of symbols.



#50 borithan

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Posted 22 August 2013 - 09:55 AM

There have been at least one attempt to do "success with a cost" with the 40k rpg system (and it is a totally legitimate way of interpreting failed rolls in certain cases). The first adventure in the second adventure trilogy, with them wandering around an abandoned cathedral, has a few instances where it has such rolls. The ones I can remember are Strength tests to bust down doors where a failure still meant they succeeded, but suffered some penalty (primarily fatigue, if I remember correctly).

 

Such a mechanic could be made more explicit.



#51 cogollo

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Posted 22 August 2013 - 11:51 AM

 

You are right here, the GM could do it, but still the dice mechanics do not suggest doing it...


I don't get it. This is entirely the point of Degrees of Success/Failure. The more DoS you get, the better you do. The more DoF you get, the worse you do. I would argue that it's more straightforward and more flexible than a bunch of symbols.

 

 

The phrase you quote has to be read in connection with the rest of my post, so I'll briefly repeat it here. WIth the narrative dice pool you get 3 axis of results: main success-failure axis, secondary advantage-threat axis, you see what gave you the successes/failutes.

 

When you roll one die (with bonuses, penalties, etc.) you only get one axis, and you lose the information on why you were successful/failed... So, indeed you can rule a lot with just one die roll, but a dice pool of special dice makes it much easier as it gives you a lot of suggestions... I have played with both systems and that's what my experience tells me.

 

Now, I fully understand why FFG will still use d100 for DH2, and I think it's the correct move for them to make (my 1 cent opinion, of course). They'll have two great dice mechanics and everybody will be happy with the mechanics they choose... It's just that I would pay for a product+dice which ported this setting to the dice mechanics used for WF3, Edge of Empire, or an evolution of them, so just wanted to add my vote to this topic for this reason.


Hur-Nir ran to the aid of the beaten man, recovering in the process a handful of pennies the thugs had let fall in the man's boots during their hasty retreat. - from Nulner Blues campaign

 


#52 Agmar_Strick

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Posted 24 August 2013 - 07:29 PM

In summary, the mathematics of d100 (and d20 and d6 games) get in the way of the narrative. They are cool mechanics for tactics heavy games, but they disrupt story flow... People start looking at their statistics and making too many calculations in their minds and that disrupts play... In comparison, with the new mechanics you just know you are better at some skills and worse at others, but you don't have an exact comparison value: exactly as life works, so it's easier to get into the narrative.

 

 

I ran a oneshot of Edge of Emprie last night. The narrative dice are just amazing, they are incredibly easy to use and after

about 3 or 4 rolls everyone understood how to read them and were adding their own narrative to the game.

 

I had a single roll determine the outcome of a high stakes Pazaak game. There was enough information in a single dice roll for a detailed description of a complex outcome game (PC's won, pissed off a wookie who swore vengeance against them and got a Hutt lord arrested by an Imperial agent). Compared to what I would get from the dice in DH, its just a different class altogether. I might have made up  the same story, but it wouldn't have been aided by the dice, beside the 'won the tournament or not' aspect.

 

Next time I run Dark Heresy, it will be with EoTE dice and system. it's just that much better.

 

 

 


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#53 illathid

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Posted 24 August 2013 - 10:46 PM

Next time I run Dark Heresy, it will be with EoTE dice and system. it's just that much better.


The only question I have is how will you do so? If you make a conversion of some kind I'd love to see it.

#54 Agmar_Strick

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 03:00 AM

If I make anything coherent, I'll share it for sure.

 

Doesn't look too hard, I plan at this point on simply giving EotE char values, using using DH characteristics and skills. That covers about 90% of the game. I'd need to think about Psychic powers, Insanity, Corruption, Talents, Influence,  Subtlety and Gear. But I'll probably only do each roughly and make up specifics as I need them.



#55 knasserII

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 04:22 AM

My problem with d100 systems is that they tend to have problems with scaling upwards. Eclipse Phase is one of the most elegant percentile systems I've played. It's fast and it's flexible, though it tends to not work that well in combats between unskilled combatants. But the real issue is that once you go beyond the human scales and start trying to assign strength scores for robots etc., you've run out of room at the top. In a system where a human's average strength is 11 and a very strong person has 17, I can make a super strong robot with strength of 30 or whatever and that's fine. When the average human has strength of 30% and a very strong one is 60%, where do I put the robot? You end up not being able to simulate it or with a pile of ugly bolt-on rules.


Edited by knasserII, 25 August 2013 - 04:23 AM.

I lack credentials.


#56 Brother Orpheo

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 06:25 AM

My problem with d100 systems is that they tend to have problems with scaling upwards. Eclipse Phase is one of the most elegant percentile systems I've played. It's fast and it's flexible, though it tends to not work that well in combats between unskilled combatants. But the real issue is that once you go beyond the human scales and start trying to assign strength scores for robots etc., you've run out of room at the top. In a system where a human's average strength is 11 and a very strong person has 17, I can make a super strong robot with strength of 30 or whatever and that's fine. When the average human has strength of 30% and a very strong one is 60%, where do I put the robot? You end up not being able to simulate it or with a pile of ugly bolt-on rules.

It's my opinion that Characteristics should be capped for human PCs (60-70), that target numbers shouldn't be higher than 100, and that bonuses/penalties should be +/-5 rather than +/-10 increments. Unnatural Characteristics as used in Black Crusade and Only War are, in my opinion, an elegant mechanic for representing the pinnacle of Characteristics and Skills.
 

I also altered the manner in which DoS and DoF are determined: add 1 to the tens digit when determining DoS, subtract the tens digit from ten when determining DoF. Additionally, I've added another layer to Tests- Degrees of Difference (DoD). This is used for Opposed Tests, though not strictly against opponents.

 

By way of example...

A security system of a noble's estate might have a Rating of 3 (30, Good Craftsmanship), and rather than rule the player's Security Test is Very Hard (-30) I'll have him make an Opposed Test against the system's Machine Spirit instead. If the Acolytes were trying to break in to a secure Mechanicum facility, I might rule the security system was set by a highly skilled individual (Security  Skill 50), using a Best Craftsmanship system (4), and each DoS on the Security Test to set the system results in an "unnatural" bonus added to the system's Rating- 3 DoS on the Security Test results in the security system having a Rating that reads as 40/+3, and the "unnatural" bonus is used exactly as Unnatural Characteristics, resulting in the system achieving 2 additional DoS (if successful) when the player makes his Opposed Security Test to disarm the system. If making the scenario ahead of the game session, I set the prerequisite number of DoD needed to disarm the system (anywhere between 2 and 5), otherwise the player simply needs to be successful and have more DoS than the system if it's an in-game "on the fly" situation.

 

I use the same House Rule when players are trying to get a junked bulldozer running so they can crash through the front doors of a narco-prince's warehouse hideout: The bulldozer is of Common Craftsmanship (2), but in disrepair, so it's rating reads as 20/-1, meaning the dozer's Opposed Test target number is 20% and it subtracts 1 DoS (to a minimum of zero DoS) from a successful Test.

 

This is the Rating system I use:

Poor (1), or 10%

Common (2)

Good (3)

Best (4)

Artificer (5) 


Edited by Brother Orpheo, 25 August 2013 - 06:28 AM.

=][=


#57 bladerunner_35

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 07:48 AM

If I make anything coherent, I'll share it for sure.
 
Doesn't look too hard, I plan at this point on simply giving EotE char values, using using DH characteristics and skills. That covers about 90% of the game. I'd need to think about Psychic powers, Insanity, Corruption, Talents, Influence,  Subtlety and Gear. But I'll probably only do each roughly and make up specifics as I need them.


Seeing as their core rules are very similar you cold perhaps check out Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay.
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