Re: Scenarios

From: Tim Ellis <tim_at_...>
Date: Tue, 10 Mar 2009 13:39:41 -0000

> About a quarter of the Sartar Book (the draft of which is very
> nearly finished at approximately 200,000 words, making it about the
> same size as the Pavis & the Big Rubble combined) is dedicated to an
> epic campaign arc

Execellent news.

> and is designed to be "straight out of the box."


> But no stats. :)

Well, which is it? Straight out of the box, or no stats, because they appear to be diametrically opposed. If you need to assign numerical reatings to every ability before you can use it it isn't "Straight out of the box", it's "Some assembly required".

It seems to me that there is a whole spectrum of approaches from the "Everything is relative, so printed numbers are *ALWAYS* worthless" through to the "Published Statistics are sacrosant, and must *ALWAYS* vbe adhered too". From where I'm standing, both are as extreme as each other, but for some reason HQ2 has apparently decided to support the first, and I really am at a loss to understand why.

Using numbers to rank skills is clearer and conciser than using adjectives which can be misinterpreted, or ranked differently by different people (or even by the same person on different occasions), and allows the ability to be used directly in the game without requiring an additional "translation" step. (One of the reasons I prefered RQ/BRP style systems over many others is the default assumption that the number on the sheet is the number you use, rather than requiring a GM always first adjudicate how difficult a task is being attempted).

Having numbers does not prevent a GM from adjusting them, either by just using a different value, or by introducing modifiers or augments (positive or negative) in order that the actual contest provides an "Appropriate" level of challenge (whether determined by slavish adherence to the Pass/Fail cycle, the GM's own sense of dramatic pacing, or just the desire to wrap up the current session at the end of a contest (or alternatively on a cliffhanger) at the end of the night).

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