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Krieg

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PostSubject: Evil Empire/Benevolent Dictatorship   Wed Jul 09, 2008 5:34 pm

The Sarge wrote:
To answer the question about the Church, it is common for a purge and the like. Uh think of it like the "Red Scare" in America but not AS severe and public.... The church has it's reason for doing things and most people see it as something that is needed, to the commoner the thinking would be "If they church didn't do WHATEVER it is they do we would be in chaos" basically most commoners don't poke their head in church business but know that the church needs to do what they need to do.
Ok, so, this confuses me.

We started out with the basic premise of being freedom fighters in an evil empire. We discussed fantasy precedents for this, such as the Midnight campaign setting and the Star Wars films/universe. As things developed, this concept changed into one that was much more of a benevolent dictatorship, albeit one with some grey areas. I had started to think of Erathian as an idyllic sort of place, a haven of peace and prosperity surrounded by the unknown darkness.

But purges totally do not go with the picture I have in my head, so I think I need more clarification or something. Because the Red Scare (or even a milder version of it) involves a serious degree of persecution of perceived enemies and the arbitrary exercise of power. When it happens outside of the public eye, with secret police and such, that tends to terrorize people rather than reassure them. The fact that this is for the "greater good" does not mask its essential injustice and violence.

More importantly, though, is that I don't get how the common folk could not care about this. When people disappear, it generally causes concern. In fact, as a pretty universal rule, it entails at the very least vocal opposition, and when legitimate opposition is not allowed, violent resistance. (When this sort of resistance is not present, it's usually because the state is so good at scaring the fuck out of people that they're too terrified to even think bad thoughts, not because they're cool with everything.) It makes sense to me that a significant chunk of people would support repressive measures against internal enemies (ie, illicit magic users, local priests we don't like)--that's how such policies get started in the first place. But I'm unclear how such repression could possibly enjoy universal support.

So I'm not sure how to phrase my question, except to ask if you could clarify this situation for me.
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PostSubject: Re: Evil Empire/Benevolent Dictatorship   Wed Jul 09, 2008 5:59 pm

Maybe there is a secret rebillion that is so secret and so good at what they do that our characters haven't even noticed it or heard of it yet! Neato.
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PostSubject: Re: Evil Empire/Benevolent Dictatorship   Thu Jul 10, 2008 1:24 am

I am not sure what else to say on this. I think the very first concepts for based around something like the Evil Empire situation but it kind of evolved in my mind into what it is. I tried to write the world up as a place that is decent but could defiantly have dark under tones. I didn't want to just say here this is evil but I think you got into that mindset and were out to get the church from the get-go. Honestly I want the players to explore it and make their decision about how they feel about it, maybe the stuff the goes on DOESN'T sit right with the players or some of the populace or maybe the players say no this is the right thing and its for a greater good.


Quote :
picture I have in my head

Maybe that is part of this issue so far? You had one thing in mind or written in your mind and I went in a different direction so it's throwing you off/letting you down. I don't really know how to rectify it because I feel like at this point unless I change it to fit with what you had in mind it might come up short of expectations. I think a lot of it is thinking of it the wrong way. Like....lets say in like Cuba, people don't openly revolt they are just living under it and don't get to voice it. Trying to think of other examples but yes in a generally free society there would be descent but try to think of how these people would think. They were all supporting what would be considered a cult or something in their world at the time and came with a small (relatively) population and did things this way. After time people get used to things if that's "just how they are" and would probably not question much. Maybe the church does a good job of keeping those people in check through non-violent means even. Bringing the guilt of Erathis or shame from others thinking you are not helping move society forward but towards their past history of violence.

I don't know maybe I am wrong here but I think you are thinking of it to much from your personal perspective (which is obviously natural and how we usually tend to think of stuff) i.e. you would revolt if you were repressed ("You see 'im repressing me!")

Referencing my post from another thread: Maybe this isn't the right setting or right tone and isn't going to be fun to play. If so should probably decide now and regroup with what we should do. If we aren't having a good time all playing together then its stupid to play, because I think that is a lot of the fun for me is when everyone is having a good time getting to play a game with a bunch of buddies.
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PostSubject: Re: Evil Empire/Benevolent Dictatorship   Thu Jul 10, 2008 8:53 am

Okay, I'm going to try to pull together a couple different threads:

Quote taken from here
Quote :
Quote :
Granted action points were guaranteeing it but I think the roll adds to that excitement like the rush of a chance to fail or win.

Perhaps I just have to care whether I fail or win, and for some reason so far I don't. I'll think about it some more and see if I can figure out why.

...

... Thought about it, coming back for more.

Actually, I have an idea what it could be. This could all be part of a learning curve, growing pains, low-level characters, etc... and I suppose I just don't have enough patience for any of that right now. On the other hand, historically, I've always enjoyed the first few levels in D&D (except maybe first level) because since we have fewer abilities we are forced to be more "colorful" in our play style, using imagination and creativity over a page-long list of powers. Anyway, I'll roll this around a bit more.

Okay, I really hope no one takes this wrong, and if it is just me I will just deal with it so that I don't spoil the fun for anyone else, but... I think, for me, learning a new rule set, and learning about a new campaign setting, and learning about a new world while that world itself is still being written is just too much. Admittedly, I'm going through a bit of a stressful time at the moment, so my patience isn't what it usually is, so I'm SURE that is part of my problem. But, I also know that if we were hashing out this 4th ed stuff in an already-familiar and fully developed setting I would be faring much better.

To Dean: I am NOT saying this as anything against you or your creations in ANY way because truthfully I'm been downright impressed with the stuff you've put together so far. However, I think maybe creating a playable, consistent world that we can all wrap our heads around enough to immerse ourselves inside it in an RP context is just more work than it seemed it would be at first, not to mention the fact that we are ALSO testing out a whole new rule set at the same time. Maybe it is a fault of our (my?) limited imaginations and closed-minded thought patterns, but I think we need something that is more rounded out from the very beginning.

Having said that, if everyone else disagrees then I promise I'll just try to get into things because I really don't want to spoil the party. But, if you guys do happen to agree I would like to say that I love what has been created to this point in this world, and no matter what I'd LOVE to see it all pulled together eventually so that we can play it, write stories about it, role play within it, etc.
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PostSubject: Re: Evil Empire/Benevolent Dictatorship   Thu Jul 10, 2008 10:27 am

Another note on this...

regarding the homebrew world, I really do like the open-ended concept and the opportunity to define a lot of the world we are playing in, but it don't think it will work in this setting unless we are all willing to deidcate alot of time hashing all of this out together. Unfortunatley, I for one don't have time for that, or the patience for it. Also, even if we did all put in a bunch of time to build this world together I think we'll then face a problem of making all of our contributions consistant.

Of course, as I said before, this is all just my opinion. I don't know how everyone else feels.
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PostSubject: Re: Evil Empire/Benevolent Dictatorship   Thu Jul 10, 2008 12:07 pm

You make good points and I appreciate this post. It seems like you really thought about it and figured out the things bugging you. A lot of other posts seemed like rambling angry so yeah I appreciate a well thought out post. I would say that if there is agreement here then maybe we do need to make a change. It is still early and feasible so there is that. I mean it could be that it was/is to much all at once, because it seems like you and Matthew are struggling with adjusting and yeah maybe asking players/the group to adjust to, new player (patrick), new DM (me), new world, and new edition all at once wasn't the right thing. I think when we talked about it at first we said it would be easier to learn a new system in a new world because you wouldn't fall back on old ways of thinking but yeah I realize for a lot of people they need a frame of reference.

Patrick and Jon, would like some input on this here. What do you think of changing the setting? Because as of now that seems to be a big source of conflict. I am not sure how I would proceed personally since it would change a lot of what I had planned out but I mean I guess it could be done.

In the end I am having personal conflict about it, it's hard not to take all the complaints and whatnot personally even if its a product of whatever the edition or players personal problems etc. It just comes back to my mind, if it was done better their wouldn't be an issue. I appreciate the praise Troy, but again in my mind its hard to justify something else being at fault. Like I said in another thread, I am willing to step aside if my styles will clash with the group. I think in my core believes I consider D&D a combat system built around the idea of roleplaying. Not the other way around (roleplaying system that happens to have combat). I love the new system and combat and all that even in the DMs seat they made it more interesting since monsters have tactics and whatnot too so I think it will be harder for me to design away from that.
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PostSubject: Pleasing the people.   Thu Jul 10, 2008 12:57 pm

I think it really comes down to pleasing all of the people all of the time, it just can't be done. I for one have had a blast and my character and concept have fit pretty well into this campaign. I have the same feeling as you do about D&D that basically at it's core it is a battle system that you can do role playing with especially this new edition. I am also pretty easy going and wouldn't mind at all if we remade characters in a more established setting to help give a better context for those that need it. I also wouldn't mind re-creating our Doomcock characters in Patrick's campaign to get a bit more closure out of that. So basically what I am saying is that I just like playing with you guys and will take whatever I can get. Wink
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PostSubject: Re: Evil Empire/Benevolent Dictatorship   Thu Jul 10, 2008 1:01 pm

Quote :
It just comes back to my mind, if it was done better their wouldn't be an issue.

I want to stress again that there is nothing wrong with the world so far or the way you are DMing, it's just that the world is far from finished enough to offer what I guess I need from it. The thing about D&D that sets it apart from other games, for me, is the character development, the roleplaying, etc., so I really expect to see that in abundance when playing and then have combat be just an extension of the rest. So, I suppose I have a different perspective. For me, D&D is roleplay, character development, and plot development first, then combat after all of that. Unfortunatley, all of this requires a lot of prepared material and a solid (more-or-less) context, which again takes a LOT of time.

Putting a world together is a HUGE task and you haven't had near the amount of time required to do it well yet. Hell, even after playing Forgotten Realms, a world developed by countless people for a very long time, for YEARS, Matt and I still had to spend hours and hours and hours every week developing rich storylines, props, etc. in order to do it well.
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PostSubject: Re: Evil Empire/Benevolent Dictatorship   Thu Jul 10, 2008 1:53 pm

I think the thing that confuses me is that even in Doomcock I didn't feel like there was the HUGE character development. Teo had no background and was cold torturing guy who was in the dark lanterns and could shapeshift and like the finer things. Like in all our months of playing that was the development, versus Baern who has some background regarding being a stonemason and being trained and whatnot. Like maybe honestly the character isn't playing like you want? I guess I just don't see where having 200 more pages of text would help since it doesn't get used. Since as you have noted you don't have the time to develop it in real life.

I am just wondering now if maybe you aren't happy with your character and are taking it out on everything else?
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PostSubject: Corkscrew   Thu Jul 10, 2008 1:58 pm

I think it all comes down to not being able to turn his penis into a corkscrew anymore.
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PostSubject: Re: Evil Empire/Benevolent Dictatorship   Thu Jul 10, 2008 2:18 pm

Quote :
...I am just wondering now if maybe you aren't happy with your character and are taking it out on everything else?

I had Teo developed in my head far better than I have this character developed in my head, which could definitely be due to me not having taken time to work out the details this time around, or maybe not. I'm just not sure. Maybe I am having personal issues that are preventing me from having fun. Maybe I'm just getting sick of D&D on the whole. I tried to think this through and offer feedback, but now I just find myself feeling synical and frustrated. Maybe there's no pleasing me no matter what we do.

Anyway, I think might just take a break from D&D for a bit to see if whatever has me down plays out so I can just relax and have fun. In the meantime, you guys go ahead and do what you will. Perhaps we'll find that I'm the anchor holding everything back at the moment, in which case maybe I'll jump back in when I figure out how not to be.
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PostSubject: Re: Evil Empire/Benevolent Dictatorship   Thu Jul 10, 2008 2:41 pm

Damn....I hate to hear that, I mean selfishly I liked playing with you and I don't want to lose you from the group. See my post on the World/Camp page I offered another option up that can maybe help.

But the unselfish part of me says, maybe you need to take a break if you are seriously having real life stuff like a game we all play shouldn't be a priority over life ever. Ever. So I mean with that, if that's what you decide to do I hope you can come back soon. Crying or Very sad
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PostSubject: Wall of text incoming   Thu Jul 10, 2008 6:47 pm

I'm choosing to voice my overall opinion as a reply on this thread because a lot fthese threads seem like they are blending together. Number one Troy, I think you need to make the final choice about whether to continue playing. We are all friends and we all love playing with you, and the good thing about D&D is you can really introduce a new player at any time and still have it make sense and not interrupt anything. With that said, I still definitiely want to play. I was talking to Dean, and I believe he posted in the campaign specifics thread, that maybe we should try something besides this home brewed world. Dean mentioned to me in the DMG there is a campaign setting in there that is tight and small and we could try using that. I of course have no issues at all making new guys, starting over, and trying something to get everyone involved. So, I would say if you feel up to it and still are interested maybe we try that? Along with that I would try being another class besides cleric because that could be just another factor that you don't like or aren't interested in.

Talking about playstyles that is something that will never change and it isn't a bad thing if we don't all agree. Some people like combat better, some people like roleplay better, some like equally. This to me isn't a problem because D&D is able to encompass all these things. I do like that D&D has storylines plot arcs, and everything because to me that makes battles excentuated and worth fighting. One thing I want to add though is a lot of the story line fights, and plot battles and stuff come in the later levels. If you look back at our early campaign in Eberron the first adventure was really running around fighting and no one had an issue with it. It takes time to develop that story. I'm sure Dean has a story developed its just we haven't given any time to hash it out yet, I think we are jumping the gun in an extreme way calling out a lot of things already. But anyway back to play styles just be a wizard so you can cast prestidigitation and make your penis a corkscrew! haha.

I want to talk about the battle system because I absolutely love it. I always tried to make D&D a tactics game where battle wasn't just stand and hack and slash so I am a big fan of the way things are now. To me the old battles were boring because a lot of it came down to movement on the firt round into positions and then just stand and repeatedly roll your one attack roll and repeat. This is a little more of a change in mindset to try and use movement, and combat advantage, and protectiing allies, I think in the past I tended to already think in those terms so this new edition isn't much of a change and it's exactly what I was looking for. So there might be something to get used to there, but really if anything there is MORE to think about in combat now because you have so many more moves even at lowert levels and they all work in regards to what other people are doing.

Another big topic I wanted to address was the idea that 4e has less roleplay or something. We talked about that rulebooks really are just mechanics of battle for the most part because you don't need rules for roleplay. There can be more or less roleplay no matter what edition you play from 1st to 4th. There are no rules for roleplay really. ALl there needs to be is opportunity. Granted in the miniscule amount we have played in 4e we haven't had much roleplay but that is to be expected with a new group, chracters, dm, adventure. If you look at doomcock there wasn't a whole lot of it either at first, it grew as the campaign did. That just seems to be the natural course. In a related thread the idea of creating this personality of your characters is really an internal thing and not neccessarily based on the campaign. From what I can remember Teo's complete personality and background was built around MAtthew's story of the origin of Doomcock and not really based much at all on the campaign setting. Teo at first didn't have much personality as pertty much no characters do, it takes time to develop... and we haven't given this campaign any time yet.

TO answer you Dean I amn extremely open I really just enjoy playing D&D with you guys, so the setting doesn't matter to me, and of course anyone who knows my history with D&D and any game in fact will know that I have NO issue making a new guy and a new party. For all I care we could play Hello Kitty the Role Playing Game and I would have fun. If it works better for everyone to start in a more familiar realm that is fine with me, im fine to stay in Erathian, I'm good with whatever.

I know i'm all over the place here but im literally responding to like 10 posts all in one place. I think Matthew has responded that he has been reading the official forums and looking on ideas how to fix things and what not. I have two things to say about that...
1.) Forums essentially are an evil repository of likeminded haters who will regurgitate the same complaints over and over until you hate the very thing that the forum is talking about. I'm a big user of different forums and I find this to be the case quite often that I will visiti a forum and all I will find there is people just bitching and I will leave the forum thinking "oh my god, why do I even go there" That seems to be what the D&D forums have turned into and honestly if you keep reading those forums of people complaining it cant help but seep into your own thoughts. Along with that there really isn't anything in 4e that needs fixing, it doesn't need ficing because we havn't given it ANY time play out, we are talking about ficing things after playing the game exactly 1 and a half times and I think it is very premature.

My final words to pretty much everything at this point are this: Calm down, give it some time, and give it some time before anyone makes any judgements.

I'm honestly surprised this much controversy has come up already since we have played barely at all. I think more time has been spent on the forums than has been spent playing.
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PostSubject: Re: Evil Empire/Benevolent Dictatorship   Thu Jul 10, 2008 8:55 pm

I have a positive response to all of this, and a negative response. I'll deliver the negative first.

Negative:
True we haven't played this very much, but you would think being exposed to D&D across four different versions and for something around 15 years would qualify a person to form an opinion about the new version fairly quickly, it's not like we're armatures with no frame of reference. If fact, forming an opinion is exactly what you have done when you decided that you absolutely love the battle system. But anyway, I have already said that I am no longer placing nearly as much fault on these core mechanics, but rather on the underdeveloped world that we are currently playing in.

I've seen alot of comparisons between Doomcock and this campaign, but I think it is important to remember the Doomcock campaign represents a small fraction of our D&D experience and so I'm sure you'll understand when I say that my perspective is coming from the whole of my past 15 or so years of D&D experience applied against this new one. Setting that fact aside though, the Doomcock campaign is really NOT a good source of arguments against the complaints I've been issuing because it was played in highly developed setting with a richly developed history and feel, as well as several well-defined factions and NPCs. The direct result of this is that absolutely any character played in it could already have a clearly defined place and perspective in the world. As an example, even though I did not develop Teo as an individual until a few sessions into the game, from day one he was a changeling from Sharn with connections to House Cannith that suddenly found himself involved in an epic power struggle between well-established power factions, with every single subject in that description coming along with tons of history and background. Thus, Teo and everything around him had an enormous amount of depth the instant we began, which gave us a context in which to play and gave me a point of reference to care about. The same can be said for all of the other campaign settings I have ever played in: Forgotten Realms, Ravenloft, and Planescape. For me this is the sort of thing that makes or breaks the game.

Positive:
I really feel pretty bad about subjecting you guys to a bunch of bullshit drama and almost regret bringing any of it up. So, please accept my apologies for having started all of this crap. I know for a fact that a large part of my negativity has indeed been fueled by stressful circumstances that I am in right now, which have lead me to be less patient and flexible than I would otherwise be. Anyway, I do not intend to take a break from D&D, I am looking forward to playing with Zak again, and I absolutely intend to follow your advice to "calm down, give it some time". I am also going to spend some time reviewing the new ruleset again and exploring different character possibilities. I might stick with my current character, or I might not, partially depending upon what we determine on Saturday. In any case though, I will definitely put some very real effort into not letting this happen again with whatever we decide to do next.


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PostSubject: Re: Evil Empire/Benevolent Dictatorship   Thu Jul 10, 2008 9:12 pm

Baern wrote:
...I am looking forward to playing with Zak again...
Heh? When did this happen? Did I miss some important news?
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PostSubject: Re: Evil Empire/Benevolent Dictatorship   Thu Jul 10, 2008 11:08 pm

Yes Matthew I did post somewhere else here that I wanted toask everyone if it was ok in so many words if Zac joined us. It is a group game and thus a group decision but dean and I have been talking to zac and he is very excited at the potential to play, it was something he came to us with we didn't ask him to play with us or anything. So, ideally we would like zac to play but of course this is a democracy so it's up to the group, if someone has a huge problem with it then it wouldn't really be fair.
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PostSubject: Re: Evil Empire/Benevolent Dictatorship   Fri Jul 11, 2008 10:13 am

To reply to Troy; I am still confused by this whole development thing. Like I said in another post I didn't feel like Teo was insanely developed and you had said part of that was in your mind (his development) and I guess I see where you are going with it. You didn't have the time to do that. Which leads me to my point, for the most part none of us have the time to spend hours finely crafting a character and every detail about them; would it be great? Of course! But the simple fact is there is other stuff in life that we are more responsible for than when we were younger. So with that in mind I didn't develop every nook and cranny of the world.

I could have written more but honestly already was starting to say "Is this overkill" "do players need to know about random founders of the world". The short answer is, maybe. I think the world was very open to player imagination like look at matthews guy he had a ton of stuff using some simple framework of what I had written. That's kind of what I expected that people would either get creative and think of a backstory or they would just make it simple and develop as they move along.

I guess like with Eberron I am curious because like the power groups....who cares when you start. None of our guys were or would be part of them. And no the Houses don't count as real power groups since they were just part of the world (i.e government) and in this case would be equivalent to the church branches that were outlined. My main point is that groups like dark lanterns, emerald claw, the whatever eye of ondair and so on are all things that come up LATER and have nothing to do with initial player creation.

Correct me if I am wrong here but I said to Patrick; I think Troy likes the IDEA that there is all this detail even if he isn't using it. Like there was a whole Players Guide to Sharn but none of us had it or did much with it. But it was there. And like the houses I remember us asking Matthew or Patrick uhhh yeah what is that one again. They were there and had history but we didn't actively use it. But my question is: Is it the "security" of knowing there is history there, even if you don't use it, the key thing?


Quote :

I've seen alot of comparisons between Doomcock and this campaign, but I think it is important to remember the Doomcock campaign represents a small fraction of our D&D experience

But it was the experiance that we all had together and can easily reference as a shared memory, also it seemingly went well for everyone. Thus the natural comparisons.

Quote :
True we haven't played this very much, but you would think being exposed to D&D across four different versions and for something around 15 years would qualify a person to form an opinion about the new version fairly quickly

It allows you to form an opinion but you could form an opinion before it was released. Having 15 years exp means you are more qualified to test it but it doesn't mean you are going to figure it all out and be able to say I like X edition more. It's like driving a car and then one day you have to drive a semi truck, hey they are both vehicles controlled by wheels so you might have a leg up over joe shcmoe who has never driven a car but overall you still won't know what you are doing. It's a different beast. My point is at first it would be awful and hard and you would say oh jeez this sucks but who knows after some practice maybe you say oh my god driving a semi is way better, I can just run over people if they are in the way.....My point is I think regardless of how much any of us have played (even collectively) we need WAY WAY more time with $e as we have just touched the tip of the iceburg.

I wasn't there but what was switching to 3E like for you guys? I mean did you pick it up and get it one the 2nd session? Point is with that everyone seemed to really like 3.5e when we started so I mean how did you transition your mind from 1E or 2E (I dont think you guys did play 2E)?
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PostSubject: Re: Evil Empire/Benevolent Dictatorship   Fri Jul 11, 2008 11:43 am

Honestly, I'm really starting to regret that I said anything at this point since all it really seemed to accomplish was create a lot of unnecessary drama and delay. BUT, becuase I did start all of it, I feel I owe it to you to answer your questions...

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Correct me if I am wrong here but I said to Patrick; I think Troy likes the IDEA that there is all this detail even if he isn't using it.

You are corect. I like to know if I decide to delve into a subject that comes up in the game there will be something there for me when I get there. I consider D&D to be an interactive story, and if that story has depth, whether I see it or not, I appreciate the story more and know I am playing a part in something big and important, which increases the stakes, which makes me care about everything more, which makes it all more fun for me.

Quote :
It allows you to form an opinion but you could form an opinion before it was released. Having 15 years exp means you are more qualified to test it but it doesn't mean you are going to figure it all out and be able to say I like X edition more. It's like driving a car and then one day you have to drive a semi truck, hey they are both vehicles controlled by wheels so you might have a leg up over joe shcmoe who has never driven a car but overall you still won't know what you are doing. It's a different beast. My point is at first it would be awful and hard and you would say oh jeez this sucks but who knows after some practice maybe you say oh my god driving a semi is way better, I can just run over people if they are in the way.....My point is I think regardless of how much any of us have played (even collectively) we need WAY WAY more time with $e as we have just touched the tip of the iceburg.

I'm going to leave this bit alone. I think it is all too subjective and just don't want to go there any more than we already have.

Quote :
I wasn't there but what was switching to 3E like for you guys? I mean did you pick it up and get it one the 2nd session? Point is with that everyone seemed to really like 3.5e when we started so I mean how did you transition your mind from 1E or 2E (I dont think you guys did play 2E)?

It wasn't painful for me or for Patrick because he and I were the ones that wanted it, but I do distinctly recall fairly significant resistance on the part of everyone else, especially Kieth. In fact, I think it took everyone else several months to make the switch and be comfortable with it and that was without changing the campaign setting that we were in. I suppose that should have been a learning experience that we could have applied here too. Anyway, in this case, with 4th ed., I suppose the roles have been reversed a bit with me being the one that is showing resistance.
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PostSubject: Re: Evil Empire/Benevolent Dictatorship   Fri Jul 11, 2008 3:37 pm

Yeah no sweat I don't think (for me) it's "drama" anymore I am just trying to figure out the issues so we can hopefully learn from the and fix them in the future.

Regarding the story part: That was honestly my aim of this campaign but like a good story or book you didn't know every detail out of the box. Let alone that as characters/players I think we are spoiled with like "Guide to" books. Like in all honest would a person know about every faction or power group or whatever? I think more likely they might have heard of one or two and then as time goes on (especially if they are in contact with them) they will have in depth knowledge. The problem with like the Eberron book is it was for DM/Players and a player could dive into info on everything in the setting that honestly their character most likely wouldn't know.

So with that said I felt like without every single every of the setting divulged or discussed it left a lot of freedom for me to swing the arc one way or another versus if the players know tons of info up front they will a. play a certain way and b. expect you to follow these prescribed rules of the setting.

That was part of my issue with Matthew's digging at the church and social structure, I didn't want to say the Church is a. good or b. bad it was supposed to be a mix of both that the players would make a decision on. But even giving THAT info out sets the minds of players to "seeking" mode like ok where is he making us make a choice etc. I guess it was unconventional but I wanted to try something a little new. Unfortunately it seems like this isn't what the players wanted which disappointed me but, oh well that's life not every plan works out. Pick up the pieces and change to something that will work.

I guess regarding 4E I just don't feel like it has been given its "fair shake". My goal in the question regarding 3e was just to kinda make people remember that it isn't always a smooth transition but that in the end it might be for the best. Either way at this point I am not angry or anything just ready to move on and try the next thing out.
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PostSubject: Re: Evil Empire/Benevolent Dictatorship   Fri Jul 11, 2008 3:54 pm

I know this might sound backward after all the discussion that has taken place, but I would be willing to giving everything that we have already done a shot again, if that is what we decide to do. I mean, I don't know how much of my complaints would never have surfaced if I hadn't been so goddam stressed out and impatient. Maybe if that hadn't happened all this stuff would have smoothed itself out and and it wouldn't have been a big deal at all. I don't know if that is what would have happened, but I'm open to the possibility. One thing though that I would say is that I don't think things should be as open-ended. We really do need a it more "black and white" here.
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PostSubject: Re: Evil Empire/Benevolent Dictatorship   Sat Jul 12, 2008 12:03 am

The Sarge wrote:
That was part of my issue with Matthew's digging at the church and social structure, I didn't want to say the Church is a. good or b. bad it was supposed to be a mix of both that the players would make a decision on. But even giving THAT info out sets the minds of players to "seeking" mode like ok where is he making us make a choice etc. I guess it was unconventional but I wanted to try something a little new.
I can totally see why you might want to do this, and I think that it is an interesting way to structure a campaign. I was looking forward to exploring things, and eager to find out the different facets of the church that you had thought up.

The reason that I kept digging is that I could not come up with a consistent way to envision this world in my head. I made reference to this earlier, talking about the "picture I had in my head"). It's not that I need all the answers upfront--I appreciate a good mystery. But my character is part of this world, and as a player I needed to have some sort of way to imagine how he thinks about things. Because even though I as a person do not know anything about Erathian, my character has lived there all his life and knows it intimately.

I think what happened is that you, in your head, had a clear idea of what the church was, how it worked, etc., and you wanted to reveal the whole story in the course of an interactive plot. Hence, I assume, your frustration with my probing. At the end of the day, though, the amount of story that was presented seemed confusing to me. Probably it would all have become clear in time, but to begin it just felt vague.

I think this is an inherent difficulty in coming up with original settings. The professional folks have the luxury of detailing alien societies in great detail over hundreds of pages, because they get paid to do it. Humble DMs, alas, do not.

Perhaps it might be more effective to start out simpler. Say, in an isolated village or whatever. Then the characters can encounter places like Erathian as outsiders. They know exactly as much as we, the players, do; they learn at the same rate that we do. That way you can use all the cool ideas, and all the rich detail, that you have come up with at exactly the pace that you want.
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