Re: Ambiguous Abilities (was Does size matter?)

From: Andrew Dawson <asmpd_at_...>
Date: Sun, 26 Mar 2000 13:48:45 -0500

At 10:27 AM 03/26/2000 -0800, you wrote:
>The whole idea is summed up in chapter 2 in the Ambiguous References
>section. ALL abilities really fall under "ambiguous reference". Do you want
>to use your sword and shield ability to look at a sword and test its
>quality? sure, go ahead. While not a normal use of the skill (and thus prone
>to Improv mods), it is a legitimate one in my opinion. What? You say it's a
>close combat skill and not "Evaluate Sword"? Well that's why there's an
>Improv penalty...
>What does Snarl of Darkness do? I dunno, could be an attack feat that
>obscurs the battlefield ("darkness pours from her mouth and conceals thes
>cene from you"), or destroys your morale or your mind (darkness is
>associated with madness...), or acts to boost her own abilities. It does
>what *you* want it to do, and what you can convince your narrator it does.
>Let your mind wander, play with the words, try to think of alternate things
>to do with the ability.

I like this for my own games and I've been doing this type of defaulting for years in my GURPS games. However, I thought that one of Greg Stafford's stated goals was to use Hero Wars to promote Glorantha. IMO, this ambiguity in the game makes the game more difficult for novices (to both gaming and Glorantha). "Figure it out for yourself" is not a newbie-friendly policy and is not in line with promoting Glorantha to a wider audience.

I'm going to be running Hero Wars extensively at conventions because I like Glorantha and I like some aspects of the system, but I'm expecting complaints from players that they can't figure out how Hero Wars is supposed to be played. (This will happen. I have fielded numerous complaints from potential players about how confusing In Nomine is due to its poor organization. If I don't hear comments at cons, I will assume that people aren't even picking up Hero Wars.)


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