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  #21  
Old March 26th, 2008, 10:32 AM
rust rust is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tbeard1999 View Post
The "Planetary Quirks" Table on p. 2 of the second preview. This looks like a typo; I think it should be "Animal Quirks".
I think they called it "Planetary Quirks" because they were thinking of common
quirks of the animals of a planet, to establish differences between the bio-
spheres of planets: On one planet most creatures have six legs, on the next
planet most creatures see in infrared ?
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  #22  
Old March 26th, 2008, 12:42 PM
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You know, for one moment there I thought we were almost to a point of being able to call for a group hug, and then moving on...

Oh well, still I am still looking forward to the game release (in less than a month!)!
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  #23  
Old March 26th, 2008, 12:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Echo View Post
I am still looking forward to the game release (in less than a month!)
You are lucky, I will have to wait for my pre-ordered German edition ...
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  #24  
Old March 26th, 2008, 04:10 PM
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Originally Posted by tbeard1999 View Post
So, I'll ask you to prove up your accusation as well or appropriately qualify it. EDIT--Bad phrasing on my part; you made no such "accusation". Ignore that statement, please.
Drop this crap NOW

This goes for everyone. Take these cross-forum arguments about who insulted who and why someone was banned somewhere else, preferably to PM or private email.
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  #25  
Old March 26th, 2008, 05:37 PM
MongooseMatt MongooseMatt is offline
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Originally Posted by tbeard1999 View Post
If the timing/effect system has truly been relegated to an optional rule, then there appears to be some legacy text problems in the second preview -- the descriptions on p5 of the preview refer to Effect. On the other hand, if timing/effect is NOT optional, then that's unwelcome news to me. I hope my celebration of the demise of the timing/effect system was not premature...
Effect is still present (in a minor way) in combat, Timing isn't. Timing _can_ be applied to skill checks, but it is not mandatory (depends on the situation).

Nothing is optional per se, as we rarely put optional rules in a main rulebook, except in a toolkit sense - always thought it a bit wishy-washy.
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  #26  
Old March 26th, 2008, 05:55 PM
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tbeard1999 tbeard1999 is offline
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Originally Posted by MongooseMatt View Post
Effect is still present (in a minor way) in combat, Timing isn't. Timing _can_ be applied to skill checks, but it is not mandatory (depends on the situation).

Has there been any attempt to address the fact that effect will tend to skew high? Or has that perhaps been taken into account by new Effect rules?

As an illustration, consider the rocket scatter rule on p.5 of the 2nd preview. In some cases, a rocket will scatter (6-Effect) meters. If Effect is determined pretty much the same as it did in the playtest, this means that most rockets will scatter only 0-1 meters. Is that really a rule worth having? Or is Effect determined differently from the playtest rules?

EDIT--After re-reading the example, my original statement is wrong, at least as applied to that example. Since the rocket must first miss, the Effect will tend to skew low, which means the rocket will tend to scatter more. And that's a desirable outcome.

So...I hope everyone is sitting down...it appears that I actually like an application of the Effect rule. Well, like is a bit strong, but I don't see a problem with it. Strange days indeed...

I also note that if timing has been effectively eliminated, how the Effect die is determined seriously impacts the probability spread. If the player has his choice, then the Effect should skew towards the player's benefit (in part because he has no reason not to choose the best die). It's fiddly, but one possible accomodation would be to state that the high die is the Effect if the task fails and the low die is the Effect if the task succeeds. Successes will still tend to a high Effect (and failures would tend to create a low Effect) but not as starkly as would be the case if the player has his choice.

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Nothing is optional per se, as we rarely put optional rules in a main rulebook, except in a toolkit sense - always thought it a bit wishy-washy.
Regarding optional rules, I think that they are a valid design strategy where there is a genuine disagreement about how acceptable/useful a certain rule is. Sometimes, a significant minority of players might really like a rule, but a majority don't. Or, a rule takes more time or models something in more detail than the designer feels is appropriate, yet some folks like it.

I see nothing wrong with including such a rule as an optional rule, although I think that the designer has an obligation to warn players of any downsides to using the rule. For instance, in my own modern miniature wargame rules, here are some (characteristically) blunt warnings -- "The Carl Rule is realistic, but painfully non-intuitive." "The swamp rules are a lot of trouble. If you want, you can simply make swamp impassable to vehicles."

I think that the designer should also give players some guidance on why optional rules are included. Again, from my rules:

Optional rules are additional rules that players (by mutual agreement before the scenario begins) can add. They typically appear at the end of each section and are marked as such. Optional rules usually provide a greater level of detail and different flavor to the game, at a higher cost in playing time. Since the primary design goal of FFT2 was to create a fast-playing set of rules, a number of rules were rejected merely because they slowed the game down “too much” — in the designer’s opinion. Nonetheless, some rules were just too good to leave out entirely. Plus, many were suggested by very thoughtful players who really liked them. So the solution was to implement them as optional rules. But please bear in mind that using optional rules will tend to slow the game down somewhat. It’s your decision as to whether the tradeoff is worth it.

But I do think that way too many game designers have used so-called "optional" and "advanced" rules to foist ill-considered mechanics on unsuspecting players. Or, as you imply, to avoid making hard decisions. So perhaps it's just as well to generally eschew them.

Last edited by tbeard1999; March 27th, 2008 at 12:00 PM..
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  #27  
Old March 26th, 2008, 06:39 PM
Echo Echo is offline
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Originally Posted by rust View Post
You are lucky, I will have to wait for my pre-ordered German edition ...
If you get the pdf. file, you could get it translated online.
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  #28  
Old March 26th, 2008, 07:01 PM
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Well, I hope the German publishers will be fast enough to make that unneces-
sary. As far as I know, they have been working on the translation since Fe-
bruary (and therefore probably had to make quite a couple of changes), and
they promised to have the translation ready "soon after" the English version.
They should give a date any day now, and then I will see whether it would
be worth the trouble to have a pdf translated ...
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  #29  
Old March 26th, 2008, 07:02 PM
far-trader far-trader is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Echo View Post
If you get the pdf. file, you could get it translated online.
With some very interesting "translations" I'd bet

The programming has come a long way, but has a lot further to go before we can rely on it to take the place of human translators.

Though I must say your English is excellent rust.
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  #30  
Old March 26th, 2008, 07:10 PM
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Originally Posted by far-trader View Post
With some very interesting "translations" I'd bet
I once had a part of my setting computer-translated into English and then
back into German. The result was one of the funniest texts I have ever
seen. I could not stop laughing for such a long time that my girlfriend al-
most decided to call a medic.

Thank you for the remark on my English - playing Traveller has some educa-
tional value too, I guess ...
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