jmoschner reacted to Exarkfr in Range bands--any worked example from FFG?
Seriously, I understand all that.
The "good" reading you advise is the first reading I got, the one I still have, and the one that makes no sense at all.
Problem is, at the end of the day, someone has to decide that the bushi and shugenja are too far appart just because it makes sense. "He was far away, you moved close to him, so ended up far from were you started" is totally sound and fine.
But what makes even more sense, is either:
- to not use those bands and go full narrative. (as everyone at the table can agree to get rid of numbers)
- to not use those bands and go full tactical. (as everyone at the table can equally agree use more precise and reliable numbers)
Why bother with some clunky in-between mechanics that you sometimes use, sometimes don't, and always end up overruling with fiat and common sense ?
If that is really how they are supposed to be used, I see them as utter failure to achieve anything but a headache.
jmoschner reacted to AtoMaki in Range bands--any worked example from FFG?
Group conesnsus, kinda. Essentially nobody really bothered with what the acting player/GM calculated as the actual Range Band as long as it looked fine. And I can count on one hand how many times it was not fine during the 20+ sessions we played.
Yes, it was the zone system I mentioned earlier.
Hey, no problem, truth to be told english is not my first language, and I do have my problems with the glorious language of misty Avalon, so sorry if things are a bit off sometimes !
Yes, you have to eyeball it, but you can use a map too if you are not very confident with visualizing the battlefield without any help.
jmoschner reacted to Exarkfr in Range bands--any worked example from FFG?
Question is not "What are range bands ?".
Question is "How do you use them ?"
On the 2 threads from Beta linked before, no one could explain that.
One of the first questions after the Beginner Box's release is about range bands.
Warhammer 3 had a bunch of threads on this subject.
Every release of a Star Wars game had this question.
And no one ever manages to explain how they work in game.
And it's worse in L5R than in SW, because range matters more here.
FFG never bothered to explain.
jmoschner reacted to Suzume Chikahisa in Range bands--any worked example from FFG?
I'll have to see how they end up in the final game, but I'm probably going to abstract them into something like Fate zones. Still fluid enough that you don't need minis if you don't want to, but easily compatible with them.
jmoschner reacted to sidescroller in Range bands--any worked example from FFG?
@Ascarel don't get me wrong, I'm a big fan of de-gridding combat space, as well. And I'd love to see a non-grid system in L5R, for a variety of reasons. I also thought range bands seemed great when I first read the rules... and then I tried to use them.
To answer your question, I want an example that shows how the system should work where I found it failed--mostly in skirmishes with multiple combatants moving along two axis. For such skirmishes, the rules do not clarify how to keep consistent range bands without minis or trigonometry. But at that point you're tracking specific distances, which defeats the purpose of range bands. Plus, by specifying a further "fake" target, shenanigans-inclined players can use range bands to reduce the number of maneuver actions they need to reach their actual target, especially once you break out the minis. IIRC, the old thread goes into these issues in more detail, and others as well.
Range bands worked fine for dueling, where there were only two characters--and therefore one line/axis between them--but one would hope that a combat space system designed for skirmishes would actually work for skirmishes.
jmoschner reacted to OriginalDomingo in Specs that don't get played much and why?
I want to like Astrogation and navigator-builds, but while jumping into hyperspace may not be like dusting crops and is an iconic part of the genre, I've found that you can only do the quick jump to avoid the pirates/law so many times before it becomes repetitive. IMHO, a PC built around navigation (only) is a clear indication that you have too many players in your group and not enough weapons on the ship.
jmoschner reacted to Lindhrive in How are Critical Strikes handled?
You have clearly never played with a GM who has a horseshoe crammed firmly up their behind.
That said, I'm curious about this, myself. It always seemed to me that the beta's system was less 'three feet from death' and more 'two Opportunity from testing the table's patience for Monty Python and the Holy Grail jokes' - maiming mechanics have not gone over well with our local group after all that Warhammer.
jmoschner reacted to DGLaderoute in If I Enjoy the Narrative Dice System, Will I Enjoy This?
Gazing into the proverbial crystal ball here, but I think we'll find that the new version of the L5R RPG will attract a devoted following and thrive. Part of this will be because, for players new to the game, it's the only RPG product that's going to be marketed for the setting, and given splashy coverage at things like Gencon; it's also the only RPG product for L5R that will be readily available on the shelves of game stores. Moreover, the NDS, as you call it, has already become established as an accepted "thing" in the RPG industry, so it has become pretty well-known and is much less the "new weirdness" it once was.
That said, a lot of existing players will probably stick with previous versions of the game--especially 4th Edition. This is what they know, they've already invested substantial amounts of money in the books, and are likely involved in ongoing campaigns with existing, beloved characters. This is entirely cool. 4ed was a great system (I wrote a bunch of the stuff that appears in the various books, so I have a "sweat" investment in it!) and I've played a ton of it. It wasn't perfect by any means, but it did a great job of portraying Rokugan; moreover, I think the R&K system developed for L5R is, mechanically, one of the best RPG systems ever developed.
Now, there will inevitably be some players who don't like the new game and will take to the net to complain about it and to try to convince everyone else it's awful. That happens any time anything changes. Just ignore them. They're entitled to their opinions, of course, but they're missing a fundamental point--if FFG wanted to develop an RPG for L5R at all, it pretty much HAD to be significantly different from what's gone before, or what's the point? There'd be almost no money in just developing new supplements for 4ed to accommodate the changes in the story, and FFG is, like all other companies, in the business of making money. There's potentially much more money to be made in building, launching and supporting a new system--which, incidentally, doesn't "undo" previous editions of the game (it's not like all of those 4ed books on people's shelves will suddenly become blank pages). People are free to continue playing older versions because that's what they like, or jumping into the new system, as they see fit. In general, choice is good!
As an aside, the new system does indeed blend the NDS with the R&D system. You assemble a dice pool based on the Skill and Ring being used, roll those dice, then keep a certain number of them while discarding the rest; only the kept dice are used to determine the result. However, the dice being used are d6's and d12's of the "Narrative" type, that use symbols to reflect different types of possible results and effects. So it really is a hybrid of the two, which allows players to experience (or continue experiencing) the cool mechanic that is R&K, while also using the Narrative dice that have become pretty much a standard for FFG systems.
jmoschner reacted to Talkie Toaster in Shields as "Shield Points" instead of Defense
A straightforward version of this is to treat shields as effectively being ranks in Deflect. Suffer X system strain to reduce the damage of an attack (before armour) by X, where X is a number up to your shield rating.
Your system strain functions as a 2nd HP bar, one that can already be regenerated. No extra bookkeeping to do. Plus it makes shielded ships (i.e. the ones the PCs are more likely to be flying) most likely to be disabled by running out of strain, rather than hull, so once the combat ends you can fix them up and participate in the next one- rather than dying or having to spend the rest of the adventure in an escape pod.
jmoschner reacted to nameless ronin in Anyone else start your players out with an above average ship?
Ships are in a weird place for me. On the one hand SW has some iconic ships, it’s nicer if the players have a ship (or ships) that truly feels like their own, and it’s not like we lack for options. On the other hand, unless it's a military campaign with actual space combat that you really need to win, it’s not like the stats usually matter. If you’re in trouble, you hoof it away through hyperspace. If something’s stopping you from doing that, you’re probably in too much trouble to win even if your ship is above-average. And the same thing goes for the other guys. Plus, the space combat mechanics/rules aren’t really all that great. So all in all, we tend to go for cool and quirky more than for performance.
jmoschner reacted to KRKappel in GenCon Event - Wedding at Kyotei Castle
So, as a veteran of running RPG games for FFG at GenCon, I can tell you that these time slots appear to be the standard ones we've used in the past to run Star Wars, Genesys, and End of the World. If you couldn't secure tickets, but still want to get in a game, have hope! The best way to secure yourself a seat is to do the following:
Step 1: Acquire generic tickets totaling 6 dollars.
Step 2: Arrive at the FFG RPG Organized Play Room about 15 minutes ahead of the listed game-start time, making it clear to whoever is at the front that you have generic tickets and were hoping to get into an L5R RPG game in case someone no-shows or a spot otherwise opens up.
Step 3: Wait patiently until 15 minutes after the registered start time, perhaps getting into a game.
The morning games tend to have this happen more often than the late afternoon games (especially after people stay out late Friday and Saturday). It might take a few tries to get in, but a lot of people have success with this method. It also appears they are only selling 5 tickets per table. We can typically accommodate 6 players, so they might be holding 1 seat per generic ticket-holder per table to move on a first-come first-serve basis. This has been suggested to them in the past by those of us that run the games.
Anyway, it might take a couple of tries before you get into a game, but if you really want in, this is the best approach.
Good luck! Not sure what they'll have me running this year between Star Wars, Genesys, and L5R, but this adventure sounds cool!
Edit: For the record, the FFG free play room is usually room 125 or something like that, along that long, long hallway on the Westin side entrance.
jmoschner reacted to sndwurks in Beginner Game
As a product meant to introduce players to the game and setting, you do not want support for more than 4 PCs and a GM. Think back to when you first started roleplaying, not just when you started L5R but when you started in the RPG hobby. How big was that table? How big SHOULD that table have been? For those of you who GM, imagine trying to GM a new game out of the box for a number of PCs. How many PCs do you want at that table?
Honestly, the choice of "4 PCs and a GM" as the base box makes sense. And if you were going to have 4 PCs (and only 4 PCs), which Clans would you choose? The Lion Bushi, Crane Courtier, and Phoenix Shugenja are, basically, your most iconic L5R archetypes, which are the most approachable from an outside media perspective. Lion Bushi are, basically, your Jidaigeki era warriors. Crane Courtiers are your Heian era courtiers. Phoenix Shugenja are your iconic wizard priests / Avatar: The Last Airbender element user. And, honestly? A Dragon Monk is basically your other half of the Avatar equation, with the Shaolin monk / martial artist film to boot.
jmoschner reacted to Nitenman in Beginner Game
Worst is, in previous editions, Unicorn and Crab used to be considered the "easiest" to play for newcomers or folks less familiar with medieval Asian setting, crab for its lack of decorum, and Unicorn for their supposed ignorance of Rokugani customs, because they would be a reason/excuse for political/cultural blunders while Crane and Lion were not advised for newcomers due to their focus on honor, culture and bushido.
Probably an aftermath of the way FFG's L5R forces Giri and Ninjo on players and GM throats, and make what was a Progressive Roleplaying effort an obligation from beginning. Rokugan their way...
jmoschner reacted to sndwurks in Beginner Game
The Topaz Championship is an annual competition to find a given year's Soul of Promise. It is basically similar to the Olympics meets Miss America, only with competitors participating in all the events, and only a single title given out. Still, just to compete is considered an honor, and even if you do not win, prominent appointments abound.
Winning, traditionally, involves taking the Iaijutsu contest at the end of the challenges. The winner is named the Topaz Champion, everyone is given their gempukku, and the Topaz Champion tours the Empire for a year, cutting ribbons and shaking hands, before handing the mantle over to the next Topaz Champion the next year.
jmoschner reacted to Manic Modron in Beginner Game
From what I've read on that, FFG are not allowed to publish PDFs of Star Wars material. For some strange reason, the license to publish electronic media of all kinds, including PDFs, is tied up with the video game license.
They are publishing Genesys as PDFs though, which is completely their own product. Since FFG also owns L5R outright now and they don't have to worry about that sort of thing, PDFs are more likely.
jmoschner reacted to tenchi2a in No role and keep no peace
This one is a major issues for me.
And not for the reasons you may think.
The issues here is Doji Hotaru and Bayushi Kachiko are having an affair, So what?
It was was not a big deal in Japan for two men or two women to have one and was actually common.
Just because it not in our time doesn't make it a big deal in Rokugan.
Also this story is misses the whole point of the original.
First lets clean up some misconceptions.
1. Doji Hoturi and Bayushi Kachiko did not technically have an affair. At the time she was still Shosuro Kachiko.
This one can be confusing due to the story in Winter Court: Kyuden Seppun being a flash-back. As Kachiko and Hoturi have parted ways and are both married at that time. And Shiba Ujimitsu who was not at the winter court in the flash-back is the clan champion during Winter Court: Kyuden Seppun.
2. Before her marriage she told Shoju of the affair and after her marriage she broke off the relationship with Hoturi. And Hoturi married Ameiko (The kitsune)
3 The issues was not that she had had an affair with Hoturi, but that they had a son because of it.
This 2nd and 3rd points is where all the story comes from
The fact that both of them still love each other and where forced apart by society.
The fact that Hoturi killed his son during the scorpion clan coup.
The betrayal of Ameiko by Hoturi.
Kachiko's uses of the egg to get revenge on Hoturi for killing their son.
Kachiko forgiving Hoturi as he die in her arms, and more importantly her insuring Hoturi that Ameiko forgave him to.
all these points and this massive and heart wrenching tale are lost with the simple switch of Doji Hoturi to Doji Hotaru.
jmoschner reacted to Split Light in Starting a Campaign with Beyond the Rim, Hitting a Snag out the Gate with Newer Sourcebooks
This is probably a time to just talk to the two players. Let them know that you are concerned about player harmony, and their characters are going to need to get along. They can have the occasional verbal sparring or playful jab, but they need to work together. If they can't do that then somebody needs to change a concept.
Unless they're both just being doinks I shouldn't think it would be a problem. Paladin and Rogue characters have somehow managed to exist in the same party for as long as their have been these games.
jmoschner got a reaction from DangerShine Designs in First time GM needing help
Go with the EotE one. You have the benefit of having ran it and it is better than the F&D one.
They work together just fine. That said, I'm not a bit fan of the mechanics for morality (the random component doesn't sit right with me). If you're worried about mixing and matching, go with Obligation.
Fun and Story first. Game mechanics after that.
Let players know it is okay to fail and that failure doesn't stop the action, it just diverts it in a new direction.
jmoschner reacted to Stan Fresh in How to handle Languages?
Your first question should be: what do you want to achieve? Then consider how you're going to achieve it, rules-wise.
So: What is it you want out of any language rules? In what way do you want to enhance the play experience? How do you see language barriers adding to the fun during play?