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  #11  
Old March 14th, 2008, 08:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Garyius2003 View Post
I am really wondering if I should even spend the money for the new books---and I was one that ordered all the T4 stuff even though I knew what it was from the net when I did it.
Since Mongoose was extremely vague on the final changes, I'm unwilling to assume that they fixed the numerous problems that I think existed in v3.2 of the playtest document. Nor can I see the wisdom of making sweeping changes to a game immediately before sending it to the printers. Unless they had an extremely well-organized private blindtest system in place (no evidence of that from the Mongoose forums IMHO), these changes would be deprived of serious playtesting opportunities.

This, combined with Mongoose's lack of specificity makes me very dubious that they (a) fixed many of the major problems I felt the system had; or (b) did so very competently.

The purported demise of the timing system is welcome, but Mongoose's vagueness makes me suspect that it will still be there, just camouflaged. And in any case, I don't think that the timing mechanic is the biggest problem in the rules. Just one of about six.

I'm also skeptical that Mongoose would significantly change systems that they left intact throughout the playtest. Or that they'll do so very artfully.

So if you didn't care for v3.2 of the playtest rules, I'd wait for comments from the initial crowd of buyers. I will be getting a copy, of course. I'm curious as to what changes they did make...

Now, if Mongoose releases the SRD at the same time as the hardback book, players will be able to evaluate the game systems without spending money. I'll be the first to applaud Mongoose if they have the stones to do that.

Last edited by tbeard1999; March 14th, 2008 at 08:50 PM..
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  #12  
Old March 15th, 2008, 03:34 AM
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If they follow the same timeline as MRQ, it will be about 3-4 weeks to the SRD.
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  #13  
Old March 15th, 2008, 02:22 PM
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Gents,

Two general comments about the upcoming release of RTT.

First; RTT's troubles, and given the playtest documents I have reviewed THERE WILL BE TROUBLES, will entirely be due to the fact that they decided to release Yet Another RPG Rules System. Designing a new rule system is the problem here.

Designing a new rules set is extremely hard work. It also requires actual playtesting from the very beginning and not just the typo/don't understand this polishing that passes for internet playtesting thesae days. A real playtest would have diabused the RTT designers of their statistically nonsensical P/E ideas and pointed them in the direction of another system the hobby would actually use. As it stands now, RTT's RPG system will be all but ignored while it's setting materials will be plundered for use in other RPG systems.

Second; the last paragraph hints at my other general observation. Just like the Disc Operating System War it resembles, the RPG System War is over.

Microsoft Windows - for better, and more often, worse - won the DOS War and is now the dominant system no matter what. Apple's systems, Linux, and all the rest amount to a fraction of the market. People in general want to use their computer without much fuss, people in general are more familiar with Windows thanks to exposure to it in their jobs, and until Windows is far more worse than it is now people in general will continue using it. It isn't the best, it isn't the easiest, but it is what people are familiar with and that is all that counts. QWERTY sucks too, but it won the Keyboard War in the late 1800s and nearly all of us still use it in 2008.

d20 is the Windows of RPGs. It isn't the best system and it can only handle non-fantasy genres thanks to clunky "bolt-ons", but it is the RPG system most people are familiar with thanks to D&D and that makes it the RPS system most people are going to use. People want to play, they don't want to tinker with a system or learn a completely different one. GURPS, Traveller's various flavors, and all the rest are like OS X, Leopard, and Linux; they'll only be used be a minority.

Wake up and smell the coffee, Slappy. d20 has won and there's nothing we can do about it.

Although the system war is over, the setting wars will never end. People want new, different, exiciting settings for RPG play and those setting can be of any genre. d20 and it's spin-offs may not perfect or even preferable for those settings, but most people are going to use d20 or a variation of d20 to play in those settings.

All this means that Mongoose can release the most godawful set of Traveller rules since T4 and that release won't effect people's interest in the Traveller setting one bit. So ignore Mongoose's rules and wait for the setting materials instead.

Face it, we've been doing this in one form or another ever since CT!


Have fun,
Bill
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  #14  
Old March 15th, 2008, 02:48 PM
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Bill: Dead wrong on both the OS War and the system mechanics war. Both exist in dynamic markets.

Microsoft continues to lose market share, unlike querty. Why? Because, unlike querty, MS Win is not that different than any other window-based operating system. The techs need to retrain extensively to make the switch, but the end user doesn't, and if the result is a better experience... and the hardware penalty is gone... it will happen. With keyboards, it takes extensive retraining to make the switch, and the few who need the extra speed of, say, dvorak, can take that training, and can implement individually (and are doing so more often now.)

Looking at the previews of D&D4, D20 is likely to fade out. What powers the big bad boy is likely to be seen as useful. But that doesn't mean it will remain D20.

Likewise, there are new designs coming out every year, and no matter your personal opinion, system maters to a great many, and being in stores matters, too. Many do not convert materials.

If the core rules suck badly, and as of draft 3.2, they have some issues, but are not in themselves horrid, just have some poorly thought out results. They do play well, if doing near maximum damage all the time.

I agree that the MoTrav playtest was not properly handled; They probably should have selected a closed group from the volunteers, started earlier in the process, and been more open to mechanical issues, and run longer.

That they have gone to press without public playtest of the final is a non-issue; that they do not appear to have taken and playtested those final fixes...

The other issue is mongoose's history: they treat 1st editions as a public playtest. Conan, B5, MRQ...

Worst case: the public playtest was a sham, and something different was quietly playtested all along out of public sight.
mediocre case: The public playtest draft 3.2 gets published. It plays. it has some easily fixed math issues.
Best Case: They took all the feedback, and did something right, and it's a good engine.
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Last edited by aramis; March 15th, 2008 at 02:52 PM..
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  #15  
Old March 15th, 2008, 03:09 PM
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Quote:
... the RPG System War is over ... d20 has won
Ah, well, not in this theatre of war. I know dozens of RPG players, and not a
single one of them uses d20.

True, many players, especially the younger ones, use d20 as a first system,
and it is also a favourite system of casual players and of many powergamers.

It doubtless has the biggest market share, but on the other hand there are
many, many RPG "territories" where the attempted "d20 invasion" has failed
miserably.
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  #16  
Old March 15th, 2008, 03:14 PM
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I think the fact that Mongoose publishing was very much at the heart of the D20 boom, when it happened, but are now looking for alternative titles like Traveller to add their D20 range - and the fact that they have been luke warm at best about the prospect of supporting D&D 4th edition - very much belies the notion that D20 has won any "war".

Frankly, the evidence is pretty palpable that the D20 'era' is very much drawing to a close. What comes next, I don't know, but it's pretty slim chance that D20 will be around as a commercial force in 5 years from now.
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  #17  
Old March 15th, 2008, 07:06 PM
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Whipsnade, I often agree 100% with you, but re. d20 I don't. As I put it a few days ago on another board:

Compare d20 circa 2003 with circa 2005 with 2008.

What happened is that a choice few d20 games (Spycraft, M&M) have developed a distinct identity and a small, loyal following, and that's it. Those are niche games which, like HERO or CoC, will be around for a long time. Every once in a long while a new, well-designed title will join the gang. Everything else has faded, is fading, or is about to fade.

I do agree with the MongTrav part, though. Rules-wise, I'm not enthused ("Forge-isms" in chargen, however mild, rile me up). But I can't wait to get my hand on a Spinward Marches book that's *not* a grimy copy of an error-ridden tome which some dude on ebay is selling for fifty bucks.
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Old March 15th, 2008, 10:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rust View Post
Ah, well, not in this theatre of war. I know dozens of RPG players, and not a
single one of them uses d20.
My experience is the same, and I live a long way from Augsburg. I know dozens of RP players in several cities, and none uses d20. A few of us have a copy of D&D 3.0 or 3.5 on a shelf, and a couple have the d20 SWRPG. But none of us actually play them.
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  #19  
Old March 16th, 2008, 12:12 AM
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I think the d20 fad was a great ride. But I must agree with many here, it is far from the "winner" nor is it even close to the major share of systems.

I know too many people who play non-d20 games for it to be the major system even. And from what I can see the following is shrinking not growing. Further this 4th edition seems to be causing some folks to rethink their comitment to d20.

Daniel
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Old March 16th, 2008, 12:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by casquilho View Post
...Further this 4th edition seems to be causing some folks to rethink their comitment to d20.

Daniel
Interesting. Not at all the vibe I get from the few d20 boards I lurk on. What I've seen is they like d20 fine and are only annoyed by what they see as yet another edition/money grab by WotC in 4th Ed. The talk I hear is they intend to stick with their 3.0 and 3.5, pick up material they're missing cheap as it's discounted when 4th Ed is released, and never buy WotC product again.

Of course all this is only very peripherally related to Mongoose Traveller
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