gaming mechanics

kingdomkome21  asked:

Dunno if anyone has asked, but will there be any NPCs to interact with? A merchant, perhaps? Any other game mechanics in play or in mind that aren't so much about picking the bad guy(which is immensely entertaining and is no doubt the main focus of this game)?

absolutely! npc interactions are a big part of the game. of course, the interaction is done in the same way you interact with everything else

Shepard: Are those huge intelligent war machines that have been killing civilizations far more advanced that ours for hundreds of years and that have just attacked us while we were not ready *loads gun* no problem, guys, I got this shit.

Ryder: Ok, ok, we got this *deep breath* it’s ok, we’ve read the manual, this is going to be ok. Just follow the protocol. Ok, let’s see, a new plant, how niceWHY IS IT TRYING TO EAT ME NO GO AWAY *running sounds* LIAM NO SUVI DON’T LICK THAT ROCK *bullets wheezing by* WHY IS THE WATER ON FIRE *crying on the intercome with Kallo* PLEASE SEND HELP

Like all characters, Pharah and Mercy’s personalities are heavily tied into how they play in the game. Pharah is a protector, who views the battlefield from afar. She looks at the bigger picture and aims to protect as many as possible. Mercy is a saviour, on the other hand, and focuses on one person at a time. She comes rushing to their aid and saves people one by one. She focuses on saving people on a personal level. 

Pharah is heavily tied to the concept of justice. Meanwhile, Mercy is obviously tied to, well, mercy. These qualities are heavily linked to one another, and compliment one another. Without mercy, justice can be ruthless and uncaring, as we see Pharah be in her comic. But without justice, mercy becomes enabling, too forgiving of flaws. You could argue that Mercy is more about quick fixes, easing the pain in the moment, whereas Pharah aims to remove the cause of the pain to begin with, more detached from those she saves. This too is informed by how they play, and how we see them depicted in the trailer (both inspiring, but in different ways).

Justice and mercy are dependent on each other. They are both needed in equal measure. In the game, we see that Mercy is most effective when there is a Pharah she can fly away to, stay airborne beside, and reach many more people from such a vantage point. And Pharah, who is so far away from the nitty gritty of battles, yet makes an easy target, is most effective when there is a Mercy not only looking after her and patching her up, but powering her up as well. 

As such, a Pharmercy combo aids both of them in their goals. With a Mercy helping her, Pharah can soar higher, deal more damage to wrongdoers, and stay alive longer so that she may protect more people. With a Pharah helping her, Mercy can escape danger, see the wounded from afar, and expand her reach so that she may save more.

Protecting and saving. Justice and mercy. Pharmercy is not just a combo with great game mechanics, but also a combo for their ideals, purposes, personality. Together they can soar higher and do more in order to protect and save humanity. That is the true strength of this ship, and that is why it is so incredibly real. 

Barbarian Week: Berserkers and You!

There honestly isn’t much to be said about the D&D 5e barbarian. It’s a class that’s even more about fighting than the fighter. That said, there is always some depth into the mentality and mechanics of this class. I’m going to talk about how the DM, the player, and their allies should be using the barbarian in their game.

image credit: Will Murai

As a DM:

If you have a barbarian in your playgroup, there are some things you should know. For one thing, the barbarian doesn’t do much other than fight and get hit. So delve into the narration of combat. Make every attack dramatic, whether a hit or a miss, and make every attack against them just as dramatic. Combat is the whole reason they chose to play a barbarian. They want to hit hard and often, so you should let them be the hero that they want to be.

It might be difficult if the barbarian doesn’t want to play along with roleplaying encounters. They might screw up diplomatic relations, try to kill a friendly NPC, etc. You could remind them of the consequences of their actions, but it’s much easier to use positive reinforcement. Show them the reward for playing along, like treasure, land, revenge, crushing your enemies, seeing them driven before you, hearing the lamentation of their women, etc.

Be aware of their strengths. Primarily, their STR score and CON score. Fill your adventures with opportunities to test their STR modifier with Athletics checks. Give them pits to jump, underwater encounters, boulders to throw, stone gates to hold open, etc. They will be able to resist most poisons, disease, exhaustion, nausea, indigestion, and transmutation/necromancy spells thanks to their CON. Give them creatures and traps to face that offer a CON saving throw to make them feel strong by how easily they can resist it.

The barbarian runs the most risk of being overpowered. They are built for it. A berserker barbarian can get up to three attacks (at level 5) with advantage just for raging, and with their added damage that’s easily a deadly turn for any victim with less than 40 HP. Remind them that they are not invulnerable, despite their resistance to “bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing” damage. Be mindful that they do have weaknesses.

If you want to challenge a barbarian, you need to give them insurmountable odds. Many, many creatures will have enough attacks to get consistent hits on a barbarian. One or two high-CR creatures will force them to use up lots of healing resources. Even so, these “insurmountable odds” can be swept up by the right adventuring party if spellcasters are present. If you hold up the spellcasters for a turn or two, the barbarian will start to feel those odds stacked against them, which may be enough to remind them of their vulnerability. That is, before the magic-user charms the high CR creature or fireballs the mob of enemies to make things more manageable.

Another easy way to challenge the barbarian is to target its biggest weakpoint: it’s mental ability scores. If a barbarian has to make a WIS, INT, or CHA saving throw, there is a good chance they will fail. Protip: if the adventuring party starts to rely too much on their barbarian, a Dominate Person spell on the berserker is easily the best way to turn the tide and put the fear of God in them.

As a Player:

As someone playing a barbarian, you will be tempted to just roll attacks every round. This is not a bad thing, but remember you have another strength: your Strength! Replace one or two of your attacks with Shove or Grapple attempts to help your allies get the edge they need. You may have advantage while recklessly raging, but your allies could use the help!

You shine brightest as the tank, absorbing damage for your team. You might not have as high of an AC as the fighter, but the halved damage is a huge plus. If you can get items or buffs from your friends or from shops to boost your HP, you will be able to withstand even greater threats. Stay away from seas of enemies unless you can get a surprise round in, since your AC being on the low-end will make those ten or so attacks much more likely to hit. You will have to trust in your allies to defend you. The healer will give you aid when you are low, the bard will boost your damage, the wizard will grant you False Life.

Other tips:

  • Kill the wizard and healer first. They have the lowest HP/AC and are the biggest threat to you since you have a low WIS score (don’t take it too personally, but I mean, you can’t even read or write).
  • Remember that you have Danger Sense! It works on “things you can see” so take Perception as a skill so you don’t miss anything.
  • Get plenty of gadgets. Batman uses them because he doesn’t have magic or superpowers, so you should too! Buy nets, grappling hooks, manacles, Dust of Disappearance, Universal Solvents, anything that you think might help a walking beefcake with no powers.
  • When all else fails, remember that “death” is the best crowd control.

 As a Team:

The barbarian in your group is the only thing standing between you and certain death. Use them to absorb all that damage that would normally be directed at your tender frame. They are glad to do so. Well, “angry” to do so. It’s the rage, you see.

If you’re a healer or support, keep them healed and buffed. Crowd control some of the enemies so the barbarian doesn’t get too claustrophobic. You don’t want them getting too many attacks made against them what with D&D 5e’s concept of bounded accuracy. However, you also want to make sure that multiple enemies are reachable by the barbarian. Thankfully they have increased movement for this, but just keep it in mind that the barbarian’s rage will end if they don’t attack for a round. Stick to the back lines as you do so.

If you’re a melee-type, use the barbarian for a flanking bonus and give them yours, as well. Shove enemies away from the barbarian if they are getting crowded. If you have a higher AC, draw the fire of the weaker enemies and let the barbarian take the big guys’ damage.


Well that’s it for today. Now that we are aware of how to use barbarians in your game, tomorrow I will delve into some homebrew Primal Paths for the barbarian! I’ve been spending time coming up with some homebrew magic items as well, which I will unveil later in the week. Happy Barbarian Week, everyone!

Night in the Woods!!

I just finished this beautiful video game called Night in the Woods that I am now absolutely in love with and here is why: 

  • Casual LGBT representation - the protagonist is canonically bisexual (maybe pan!) and is best friends with a gay couple that have very lifelike relationship problems (that have nothing to do with being gay), and the protagonist continually refers to God as “they.” I’m a fan of the ship Maebea, but it’s not openly canon.
  • Deep talks that are accurate to life - emotions, relationships, beliefs, abuse, mental health, it’s all there and it’s all important.
  • The CHARACTERS. They are so unbelievably loveable and iconic, and have such a range of emotions and specific reactions to the events in the game that make them all very real as well. They are also all cartoon animals (the protagonist is a cat, and her friends are alligators, bears, and foxes, and her neighborhood includes penguins and raccoons).  There’s a character that just tells you a weak poem every day and has no other real significance but to tell you this poem. 
  • The plot is simultaneously about a cult of ghosts and a dissociative disorder, but more on this later
  • Good comedy at no one’s expense 
  • Lots and lots of fantastic one-liners
  • Fantastic graphics, fantastic game mechanics (platforming!! It’s so much fun because there really are no limits. You can walk on the sidewalk or on top of cars or along a powerline, whatever you want) 
  • A+ art style - it utilizes color to set mood and determine setting (or state of consciousness, considering the playable dream sequences left up to interpretation) and even converts to sihlouettes in some places where it’s most chilling to do so. They use the eyes of the characters to show most of the emotions. The music that was chosen for this game is absolutely perfectly placed to get the most out of the storyline. 
  • A+ suspense - the writing is beautiful and compelling. The comic relief is timed perfectly, but I still teared up in multiple chapters of the game. The game starts out where our protagonist just dropped out of college to go back home, and is hanging out with her old friends, but takes a lot of sharp turns to get into a much deeper plot over the little subplots we started. Part of me wonders if the game would change very much if I chose different dialogue options so I may find some playthroughs later, but for now I’d just like to appreciate how smoothly the plot progresses despite how quickly it descends into very deep topics.
  • It is a long game with a lot of story, but that’s part of what I love. It’s just long enough to be satisfying and I’m still sad I finished it already. Despite complications in the plot as the story continues, it’s very easy to follow. Anything that doesn’t make sense is intentionally confusing to highlight the mindset of the character you’re playing as, and I think that’s the best way to do it. 
  • There is also a lot that they don’t explain, a lot to reveal through theorizing only. I could think about this forever and not come up with every theory to be pulled from this. 
  • One of the topics they keep coming back to is the assumed mental illnesses of the different characters, even the protagonist (I only say “assumed” because they never directly say that the characters have any mental health issues, but the way they talk about their fears and the way they view reality points toward very well-portrayed and lifelike mental illnesses, mainly dissociative and anxiety disorders.)
  • Nihilistic existential dread (part of what I love about it, but could trigger some dissociation in people who are more sensitive to that kind of thing. Subtly breaks the fourth wall once to talk about how video games are just shapes and will never exist) 
  • P A R A L L E L S
  • Solid “moral” to take from the story, not even eye-roll-corny
  • What a beautiful ending

The game is about $20 on steam, but if you can’t afford it or prefer to watch games rather than play them, jacksepticeye has flawless voices for all of the characters and some good theories going so that’s the one I recommend

I guess the way I see it is, you either reveal your romance options or you gate flirts.

Like, maybe this is just me, but as a… chick for chicks, let’s say, a ladybro for ladybros, a spectre for spectres… the conversation where the woman you’ve been flirting for several interactions with who’s given no prior indication that she’s straight tells you she’s so not into it? That’s not a clever game mechanic. 

(Oh, it’s realistic, sure, but it’s realistic in the way that a daily shit is realistic, and funny how you don’t see much of that realism in video games.)

It keeps being treated by the writers as this fun thing - explore! discover! you’ll see, haha! - when the interaction they’re describing is one that isn’t even a little fun in real life. When it’s so closely related to the reality that when I came out as bi, years ago, all my straight female friends had to pull me aside and make sure I knew that they weren’t interested in women. (Despite the fact that I was married at the time.) There’s no real awareness on their part that I can see that for a specific group of people that kind of conversation has extremely negative connotations in real life that it doesn’t hold for others.

It’s not about entitlement, or being able to romance whoever you want. It’s about wanting to play a goddamn video game about scanning virtual rocks and seducing aliens without having to sit through the pained-smile-’well-as-long-as-you-know-i’m-not…-you-know’ speech in two fucking galaxies at once.

anonymous asked:

Why is it earlier DnDs gave players armies, estate and political power at later levels? You could be a general at level 10 if you were a Fighter. Does that mean dungeon delving was to be ignored at later levels? Were there systems to manage this?

Yes, actually. Old-school D&D - defined here as anything prior to AD&D 2nd Edition* - was explicitly built around the assumption that the primary mode of play would shift from dungeon-crawling to domain management starting at around 9th level. This wasn’t very well articulated - early tabletop RPGs were notoriously terrible at explaining their assumptions - but it’s dead obvious if you piece together how the system is written. It’s not just fighters and armies, either; basically any wizard spell above 5th level is written with the assumption that your wizard is managing a dungeon, not exploring one - constructing a fully stocked dungeon beneath your tower was one of the things you could do as a high-level wizard.

* 2E still has armies of followers pop out of nowhere at 9th/10th level for some classes, but it’s missing a lot of the game-mechanical infrastructure to make them useful - it’s really where that side of things started to get downplayed.

When a player asks “How many hitpoints does the monster have left?”

Originally posted by yourreactiongifs

“How many hit dice does it have?”

Originally posted by justalittletumblweed

“What’s it’s Damage Reduction?”

Originally posted by yourreactiongifs

Meta-gamey questions are a pet peeve of mine.  There are ways to get the information that are built into the game mechanics and don’t break character.  

Wanna know how hurt someone is?  Roll a Heal Check.

Wanna know if your spell is likely to affect a creature of this power level?  Roll Spellcraft.

Wanna know about the monster’s defenses?  Roll the relevant Knowledge Check.

Didn’t invest points into any of those skills?  Then you’re just gonna have to make an educated guess.

it’s so funny to me how much the homestuck fanbase changed in 2011-2012

like, initially hussie’s audience was largely just nerdy webcomic fans until it kind of branched out and was comprised mostly of those geeky ass cishet dudes who argue about power levels and call themselves gamers and shit

however, around hivebent the fanbase shifted immensely and a lot of teenagers and young adults – esp girls, and esp LGBT ppl – got super into the comic to the point where it pretty much blew up

and a lot of the geeky cishet dudes who followed the comic the longest were super bitter about it and talk at length about how “gayness” and “tumblr” and “shipping” supposedly “ruined” homestuck

however… for the great majority of homestuck’s popularity and updates it was a character-driven story with a super cool concept that carried the story but was largely never explored in-depth. we know very little about the setting (alternia, earth, etc) or the intricacies of the game mechanics (classpects etc) but we DO know quite a bit about the characters’ relationships and interactions

and that’s what kills me! tbh, character interaction and character development was ALWAYS one of hussie’s biggest strengths as a writer. it’s so funny that weirdo nerd guys who care exclusively about classpect nonsense, game mechanics, etc and proudly proclaim the “only ship they care about is john/roxy” don’t like the way the comic turned out

whether they were the intended audience or not, homestuck was never meant to be the type of media they’d really enjoy. i don’t know why they expected back to back epic fight scenes and explosions and grand heterosexual romances instead of hundreds of pages of insecure teenagers talking about their feelings. that’s always been a huge part of what homestuck was.