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Posts posted by Anaximander

  1. A bit of an update.  I've been reading through many of the OSR PDF's I have downloaded and am in the process of deleting a lot what I doubt I have no attention would ever use, and looking over my DriveThru records reveals that a good deal of the DnD retro-clones have been downloaded through proper channels leaving just a handful of that I should actually purchase.  Fortunately, most of those are cheap if bought as PDF's.  I still need to go through many of the non-DnD related stuff to see what I would be interested in.  Of the one's I have obtained by unquestionable means include Swords & Wizardry, Basic Fantasy, Old School Essentials, OSRIC, and For Gold & Glory.  Of the one's I would like to invest in are Labyrinth Lords, Castles & Crusades, Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcery, and B/X Essentials.  All of these encourage me to creativity and offer a good cross section of rule choices in which to set campaigns.  Related to these, I would like to add Dungeon Crawl Classics.


    I have only done a cursory look at the non-DnD stuff I have downloaded, but I have read through Aftermath! by FGU, and it looks like system that looks fun to play and run and inspires some creativity on my part; although since the copy I have downloaded is just a scan of the original box set, it would be a pain to actually run it.  I noticed that it is available on DriveThru.  If it is reformatted for PDF use, it might be a good investment to purchase. If not, I would hope that someone with some game creation since would take it over to re-write it and re-release it.  There's also the old WEG Star Wars and TSR Marvel Super Heroes games.  Both are readily available and all of the IP owners seem okay with free distribution of those products.


    There are a number of systems that I am interested in for their historical value but am unsure if I would want to run.  Rolemaster/Starmaster is top of the list in that regards. Also, there are some systems that I did own at one point but have gotten rid of during one of those phases where I swear I am done with roleplaying and never want to return to it.  (I've since learned to just put my books in the closet when that mood comes upon me.)  I did buy a PDF of 4th edition Pendragon and would like to re-purchase 1st edition Warhammer.  



  2. 6 hours ago, tkdguy said:


    2nd Edition is also my favorite, along with B/X. How closely does For Gold & Glory emulate 2E? BFRPG is pretty close to B/X, but it has some notable changes such as using ascending AC instead of THAC0 and separating race and class. That makes it different enough to make me buy it. But I still have my 2E books, so I'd get For Gold & Glory only if I needed something compatible for my players to use.


    I'm trying to compare to a product that I haven't done anything with in almost 25 years; so, my ability to an exact comparison is limited, but FGG looks enough like ADD2 that it would be easier to describe the differences.  First it includes the weapon proficiency options offered in the Fighter's Handbook, and it rewrote the paladin description so that he isn't too much of a goody two shoes for most adventuring parties.

  3. I got a PDF of For Gold & Glory that was offered for during the height of the lockdown.  It's based on ADnD 2nd edition with some options that I really like.  My first genuine introduction to roleplaying playing 2nd ed., and in spite of many complaints, second edition is still my favorite.  It makes me want to run and play a game based on 2nd ed. again.  I might even have to order the hard back version of the game; so, I can give them some monetary support to create more products.

  4. I've invested in the system and am interested in giving a try, but I have too many irons of the fire at the moment to do much work with it.  I am also in the process of supporting a Facebook page and Discord channel for the discussion of RPG's with an emphasis on super heroes and science fiction.  I do long hours at work, and I haven't done much to grow my brand, but if you want to lead a discussion on ICONS, I'd be willing to give you an invite.

  5. I'm currently trying to put together a game using all three core rules at once.  It required a little bit of home brewing, but it wasn't tough.  As far as getting them out of the DnD mindset, maybe, you can offer some kind of bonus reward when they play more heroically and let the players know ahead of time that being brave will bring on quicker advancement, but you would also have to maintain trust by not taking advantage of their bravery overly much.  You get what you reward, as they say.

  6. Recently, I developed a yen for old school revival gaming systems and have downloaded several PDF's for perusal purposes, but if I were to play them seriously, I would feel ethically inclined to make sure I owned a legal copy.  A lot of what I have downloaded, I know is legal.  Some I know, I should buy a legitimate copy, but there are some that are in a gray zone.  They are scans of old books that are out of print, and in some cases, the original publishers are out business.  The question is, how can I check whether a download is free and clear or would require some action on my part to make right?

  7. I don't know if this has been mentioned, but villains based on hip culture seems to be popular in teen based hero groups.  I'm not too up on modern teen hip culture, but how about Social Medium, a magic using villain who uses social media platforms to control the minds of victims.

  8. One of the biggest drivers in medical costs in our country is an unfriendly regulatory environment that causes doctors and hospitals to spend way to much time, energy, and money jumping through bureaucratic hoops.  I have worked in the hospital environment before, and I am currently trying to get back in.  Most of the actual effects of our regulations is turning the medical profession into a fear based environment where a lot of resources go into self-protective choices.


    Reforming the bureaucracy associated with the medical profession to the minimum necessary would go a long ways toward improving services and reducing costs.


    Another driver in medical costs is the availability of insurance, Medicaid, and Medicare.  All of these options increase costs to medical providers by increasing the amount of paper work that is needed to do medicine.  In addition, they also function as invisible moneys that have a real affect on the supply and demand curves even though they are effectively fake money.  This pushes the value of medical services to the point that they cannot be obtained without outside resources like insurance, Medicaid, and Medicare.  You want to decrease the cost of medical services you have to decrease the effects of invisible money.

  9. I have connections who have been to Cuba and who are from Cuba; so, I have a lot of first hand accounts of what life on the inside is like.  Cubans who live and work in the tourist friendly areas have it pretty good, but Cubans who live in areas outside of the tourist zones not so much.  They struggle for basic survival, they live in constant fear of the secret police, and they lack even the most basic of human rights.

  10. Regardless of whether or not we are talking about the Republicans or the Democrats, there is a divide between party leadership and the rank and file party members.  Trump's initial advantage was his appeal to the disaffected party members within the Republican Party, Independents, and even some Democrats, and by doing so, he managed to beat both the Democrats and the Republicans leaderships.  Bernie speaks well to the disaffected within the Democrat Party and the party leadership feel their positions threatened.


    That being said, I think the Democrat's best option to win disaffected voters away from Trump was actually Tulsi Gabbard, but she spoke the party line even less than does Bernie; so, she was attacked grievously by both the party leadership and the MSM.

  11. 16 minutes ago, Chris Goodwin said:

    Quick informal poll.  Who of us got started in fantasy reading Lord of the Rings?  If not, what was your introduction?  


    I have never actually completely read the Lord of the Rings trilogy or the Hobbit.  I think I completed the Fellowship of the Ring after having seen the movie.  My introductions to fantasy were the King Arthur stories, Clash of the Titans, AD&D 1e, the Compleat Enchanter, the Sword of Shannara (which I recognized as derivative of a book I hadn't even read, and don't think I got much further in the story), Robert Asprin's Myth Adventures series, Lawrence Watt-Evans' Ethshar novels, Xanth, the Incarnations of Immortality, Poul Anderson's Operation Chaos, Jack Chalker's Dancing Gods series.  


    I have yet to read Lord of the Rings.  I liked Arthurian legend and Greek mythology were my earliest connections with fantasy, and I've read the Myth, Xanth, Dancing God, Mallorean, and Belgariad.  I am also greatly inspired by Robin Hood and the Three Musketeers.  Truth is, I am far more of a science fiction guy and that is where most of my fiction reading goes.   Almost forgot the Adept series which had both science fiction and fantasy elements.

  12. Related to Hermit's statement on religion, I think that his argument can be broadened to differences in station in general.  I might not hold serving people in especially low regard or the well-to-do in high regard.  I judge people equally regardless of station, but I was raised that way, but that is not how I would have been raised in medieval Europe where everyone was expected to live according to their station whether they liked it or not.  So, I find it jarring when I see a character talking smack to noblemen in general conversation without having their heads summarily removed.  Admittedly, enforcing those kind of standards with modern players presents its own issues beyond mere story writing.

  13. What I want most out of a setting is internal consistency.  Basically, the physics and metaphysics of the universe should be true and the same throughout the entire story.  If the physics and metaphysics are thrown together haphazardly or changes from scene to scene without an internal explanation, that throws me off.


    Regarding the use of anachronisms in storytelling, I am mixed and it strongly depends on how it is used.  There are many great and engrossing works of literature and cinema that are chock full of anachronisms.  Some times, the anachronisms are intended.  Sometimes, they are not.  Either way, the stories still maintain immersion throughout.  Regarding the use of anachronistic language in literature and anachronistic fashion sense in cinema, a story writer has to write and dress his stories in order to maintain the attention of the intended audience.  I've had literature classes in college, and I read at a high level, but sometimes, even the references from an American novel from only a century ago can be unapproachable without good annotation while the original English used by Chaucer might as well be a foreign language to most readers.  You have to write in a language and vocabulary sense of the intended audience.  Take the mesmer issue as an example.  I know what the word implies.  It has an oldish sound.  And, the fact that the word would not exist in the period in which it was used is not off-putting to me.


    A similar problem can be had of fashion sense.  Some of the fashion sense of our ancestors would be shocking to us today if we weren't expecting it and could distract a potential audience from the actual story; so, you might get the clothes and hairstyles close to what the audience would it expect them to be even if it is not accurate to what they are supposed to be.  For example, if you want a certain character to considered attractive by an audience, you will want the looking attractive based on the biases of the audience and not to the biases of the people that lived in the time and place that the story is set.


    What does throw me off is an excessive use of slang and pop culture references, especially as I get older and stay up with slang and pop culture less and less.  Okay, they work in comedy when I actually understand the reference.  Two examples where the use of slang and pop culture references are the Naked Gun movies and The Knight's Tale.


    In regards regards Naked Gun, I loved the movies when they came.  The humor is right up my alley.  I saw the trilogy on sale at Walmart for real cheap; so, I bought them.  I still enjoyed a lot of the humor, but I really had to think back to get a lot of the pop culture jokes.  I'm over 50.  I was still a young man when the movie came out and was still active in staying up with pop culture.  I wonder if some guy in his 20s now would even have a chance at getting many of the jokes.


    Then there's The Knight's Tale, I wanted to like this movie and I genuinely tried, but ultimately, I didn't.  The anachronisms and cultural references were just too jarring for me.  First, I was starting to lose my interest in pop culture; so, the pop culture was not endearing to me, and it's use of anachronism was so haphazard that it left me feeling like it didn't know what kind of movie it wanted to be, and that's a shame, because I kind of liked the actual story.

  14. On 2/14/2020 at 8:04 AM, Duke Bushido said:


    I strongly dislike the phrase " the original series." 


    It implies that there were others....  ;)




    My idea for Star Trek is to place it some where between the original series and the movies while adding in nuggets from what I like best of the later series and from some of my own ideas.  I'd keep the design of the original uniforms and phasers.  Older ships would like the ships from the series.  New ships would look like the ones from the movies.  Klingons would be divided into two subspecies, one with the ridges and one without, and they would still be an enemy species.  I would add some of the races from TNG and DS9, and I would make Federation society and economics into something I consider more realistic.  (I'm sorry.  I just can't buy into some of the political and philosophical views espoused by Roddenberry long enough to maintain a whole campaign.)

  15. The biggest problem with the hyperdrive maneuver is that that is not how hyperdrive is supposed to work in Star Wars.  In Star Wars, hyperdrive sends you into an alternate dimension with different time-space physics.  So the time in which a Star Wars ships maintains a high velocity is very short.  For that matter, it isn't supposed to work within the gravity well of a planet either without instantly obliterating the offender.


    The singled kamikaze attack taking out a super star destroyer is stupid, but hubris is the greatest weakness of the Empire; so, it's not outside of reason.


    I've not read much material outside of the main movies; so, I have no idea how to respond to the Force lightning issue, but ultimately, not what can be done with Force lightning.  It's what Palpatine can do with Force lightning.  At no point in any of the movies or the Clone Wars series, does Palpatine show the capacity to knock out entire fleets with Force lightning.  Admittedly, he might have been holding back as part of his grand plan or could have used the time out of lime light to build up his power, but if so, there should be an explanation as to why he did not exhibit that level of power before.

  16. I admit I haven't in the Crisis TV shows.  I've cut the cable a long time ago, and I am not going to pay for umpteen millions streaming subscriptions to watch show for which I am not even the main target audience, but I remember the comic books series.  I grew up reading DC comics in the 70s, and I love the multiple universes where alternate of well known characters could co-exist.  I even use it for my super hero campaign.


    I read the Crisis books, and my feelings were mixed in regards to results.  First of all there was the killing off of favorite characters without the prospect that they were at least still alive in an alternate reality.  Then, there was the unintended consequences of creating plot holes and continuity errors that were as bad or worse than the ones they were trying get rid of.  Finally, they through away a lot interesting story potential by draconicly trying to make all characters comport to the current favored reality.  Frankly, I think it would have been interesting to see characters from different universes struggle as they cope with the confusing of adapting to the new universe.  Worst of all, I was one of the few fans at the time that actually liked the existence of multiple universes even if it did get a little confusing from time to time, but that goes back to no longer being apart of the main demographic that comic books publishers are aiming for.  That being said, I did like many of the changes.  I was also into a system called DC Heroes at the time, and in my head canon, the core DC universe at the time was just one of multiple universes where a Crisis like event occurred, and there was an infinite number of universes that remained completely unaffected by it.

  17. I admit I liked the early 80s than I did the late 80s.  By the late 80s, my tastes were leaning away from pop culture and pop music to more retro styles.  I was listening to a lot of late 60s and 70s stuff before they were called classic rock, and I also listened to a lot golden oldies which comprised 50s and early 60s.  It was also when my interests starting to expand to include blues, jazz, and classical.  I will catch myself enjoying late 80s pop and old school hip hop out of sense of nostalgia even though I did not like those musical styles at the time.  By the way, have I ever mentioned that I am huge music lover?

  18. Popular Movies:


    Fast Times at Ridgemont High


    Raiders of the Lost Ark


    Clash of the Titans



    Popular Bands and Musicians:

    Cyndi Lauper



    Flock of Seagulls

    Men at Work


    The Scorpions



    Iron Maiden


    It was also when I had discovered roleplaying games for the first time even though finding games to actually play in was difficult in my hometown.

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