mordicai caeli (mordicai) wrote,
mordicai caeli

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i'd like to take a moment to rebuttal an editorial stance at wizards of the coast. there seems to be a weird amount of dungeonmaster cross bearing going on over there; o pity the great martyrs, for no player shall ever respect them! the basics of the jason nelson-brown's statements are pretty decent, & i don't want to come down too hard on him. different people are interested in getting different things out of the story, & that is fine. in fact, it is incumbant on the players to assist each other in this, which can be hard. if this guy wants to have tiny little vignettes for character depth, take that moment! if that guy needs secrets to reveal little by little, work it into the story! but there are certain...nuggets in the wizard's stance. things that...well, they just arn't true. if you players are getting less interested the more detail you provide? well, certainly you could just be blitzing them with made-up names. & sure, you will have some players that find history & politics boring. i don't know though...the campaign setting is a puzzlebox. you're players are out there figuring it out! or at least, fiddling with it. mine were! & it isn't just about feeding your players magic items & new monsters to kill. this is, to step aside for a moment, the problem i am having with the new direction the monster manuals are taking: building a monster for one encounter. now, listen, there isn't anything wrong with that; a monster can scuttle down from whatever horrible lair to menace a party & be done away. but, well...what if i don't want that? what if i want the dragon or the devil or the mindflayer to be the mastermind behind the scenes? sure, i can just add levels, but now we're skewing the cr, & we're pushing the work back over to the dungeon master. the whole point of a monster manual is that a dungeon master can pick out a guy from it & set it to work. sure, all of a pit fiend's abilities & powers won't come up in an encounter, but it might come up in several encounters? heck, that is an easy way to work in multiple sessions without breaking a sweat; think of different venues to showcase all the powers. force them to go to court, where "court" is an invisible pit fiend using persistent image. make them fight their way to an altar protected by created undead to learn the secret charm to protecting oneself from the devil's blasphemy. whatever! squeeze blood from that stone!

i'm not interested in players who just show up to swing a sword. if i was, i'd be a miniatures gamer, & dungeons & dragons has already veered near enough to that event horizon for my tastes. & really, details in a campaign? well, it is like weta workshop figured out. even if the filigree on that elven sword won't show up distinctly on film, or your players might not care about the damned architect who built all those cursed churches? it shows up in the end sum. the aura, the layers, it all lays down a foundation that lets disbelief be a little bit more suspended. it adds to the mystery, & not all mystery needs to be dispelled. people can argue about who that dark figure was, about whether agent cooper is in the black lodge still, about whether the man living brahm clavell stroub's life is really him. i don't know, call my spoiled? i have a good group that cares about the game as a hobby & not a time-waster. my guys show up because the game matters to them, matters to them as a work of communal storytelling. we write our character histories & adventure summaries & descriptions for all our magic items because, well, even if the other players don't know that my +1 amulet of natural armor is really one of the nineteen (19) feathers saved from the hellfires of baator when a planetar fell from grace? it adds just a pinch of spice to the dish, & in the end, that flavour improves everyone's experiance.
Tags: dnd, ideology

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