Jeff Kesselman jeffk at tenetwork.com
Sat Jun 21 14:31:12 New Zealand Standard Time 1997

At 12:36 PM 6/21/97 PST8PDT, you wrote:
>[Jeff K:]
>> At 08:18 PM 6/20/97 PST8PDT,Adam W. wrote:
>> >can't figure out how to interact with the game.  Ours is particularly
>> >bad since the game world is so open-ended (no easy-to-define goals from
>> >the moment you start playing) and so complex (no simple list of
>> >rules as with a pen and paper RPG).
>> I rather object to this characterization.. if you had said "AD&D" or "an
>> OLD pen and paper RPG" I might have agreed.
>> I suggest you look at Hero system, and its child the new Fusion system.
>Well, let me state it this way - as a player of a pen and paper RPG, I
>always know what the rules are, even if they aren't special-case stuff.
>In a mud you have no idea - you push button X and Y occurs, you push button
>Z and A occurs, except much more complex.  Eventually you may figure out

This is totally dependant on your Judge in a pen and paper game.
A bad judge I agree.
A mediocre judge, this is mostly true.
A good to great judge this statement is totally false.  the "rules" merely
provide a STRUCTURE for describing and quantifying the infinite
possabilities in the judge's mind.  Where a rule system is so limiting it
cannot fit the concept, new rules are created by the judge.  That's how D&D
grew into AD&D -- judge created extensions. Hero system is no more
constricting as a set of laws then, say, the laws of physics are in our
world (lexx actually). it is merely a notational system for quantifying the
effects as they pertain to other people and hero has the built in
infinite-extension capabilities of "advantages'a and 'disadvantages" that
re made up by the judge.

I'd say you played pen and paper with very uninventive people.  I defy you
to describe to me something on a  MUD I could not run as an adventure just
about ANY FRP system I chose.

Jeff Kesselman

>'how' something works at the top level - the same way that the Celtic
>druids figured out 'how' herbalism worked.  They knew nothing about
>chemicals or their effect on the body, they just knew that a bit of
>solomon's seal mixed with some yew bark in boiling water made a nice
>headache remedy.  Sometimes pen and paper RPGs 'forbid' (haha) the
>players from knowing the DM's rules...what was that old one where if
>any play demonstrated any knowledge of the game rules, the other players
>were supposed to turn and blow them away?

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