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6/11/2014 8:58 am  #61


Re: AS&SH 2nd Print?

Agreed - I plan to read it again now. I enjoyed it on its own before, but now it's time to read from a referee's perspective.


Blackadder23: Insanely long villain soliloquy, then "Your action?"
BORGO'S PLAYER: I shoot him in the face
 

6/12/2014 7:03 am  #62


Re: AS&SH 2nd Print?

Blackadder23 wrote:

Something like this?

That's awesome!

 

6/12/2014 9:43 am  #63


Re: AS&SH 2nd Print?

k2h2m3 wrote:

That would have come in handy when I read volume VI.

Heh... that would have come in handy when I edited VOL. VI! Nice work, Blackadder23. (I still want a Darlene map, though.)

 

6/12/2014 10:38 am  #64


Re: AS&SH 2nd Print?

Ha ha, well, I'm certainly no Darlene. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/wink.png
I have a copy of her Greyhawk map on the wall of my library. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/love.png


Michael Sipe 1979-2018
Rest in peace, brother.
 

6/13/2014 12:13 pm  #65


Re: AS&SH 2nd Print?

Blackadder23 wrote:

Ha ha, well, I'm certainly no Darlene. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/wink.png
I have a copy of her Greyhawk map on the wall of my library. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/love.png

I have one hanging in my kitchen (where we game):

http://www.swordsmen-and-sorcerers.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/DMP-300x225.jpg

(from http://www.swordsmen-and-sorcerers.com/3-2/about)

 

6/13/2014 12:51 pm  #66


Re: AS&SH 2nd Print?

I think, if I hung that up in the kitchen, my wife would delivery me a sharp check to the nethers.

 

6/14/2014 2:04 am  #67


Re: AS&SH 2nd Print?

Druvas wrote:

I think, if I hung that up in the kitchen, my wife would delivery me a sharp check to the nethers.

That's confusing the map with the territory!

 

6/14/2014 4:45 am  #68


Re: AS&SH 2nd Print?

Handy Haversack wrote:

Druvas wrote:

I think, if I hung that up in the kitchen, my wife would delivery me a sharp check to the nethers.

That's confusing the map with the territory!

<snicker>

 

7/30/2014 7:47 am  #69


Re: AS&SH 2nd Print?

You know what I'd like to see in a second print? Some more advice on devising adventures. Referees not familiar with other D&D-esque games may have a hard time creating dungeons and wildernesses suitable for an exploratory play, and even veterans may need something more than a single page. To sum it up, I'd like AS&SH to be as self-contained as possible.

 

7/30/2014 8:06 am  #70


Re: AS&SH 2nd Print?

Ynas Midgard wrote:

You know what I'd like to see in a second print? Some more advice on devising adventures. Referees not familiar with other D&D-esque games may have a hard time creating dungeons and wildernesses suitable for an exploratory play, and even veterans may need something more than a single page. To sum it up, I'd like AS&SH to be as self-contained as possible.

That's a really good thought. I think I'd like, specifically, some material on what sets S&S (and AS&SH) adventures apart from others--and not just "philosophically" but also in terms of design and structure. I know you stress self-contained, Ynas, but there are just so many resources on the making of adventures that I think what I'd like to see from AS&SH is some way of cutting through the noise to get to the signal of what makes it S&S:

•  More self-contained adventures instead of campaign-style, long-arc planned narratives
•  Let the narrative grow out of the adventures, not the other way round
•  Weird it up--not talking dragons but living worms that eat the petrified carcasses of their ancestors and so slowly petrify even as the next generation begins the spiral again. Also, elk worshiping at Xathoqqua shrines. Just because.
•  *Hyperborean*--Refs should always keep in mind the Hyperborean year, the color of the sun, the nature of the trees (these are pine trees, Donnie; they won't hurt you), how the flow of water changes during the celestial cycle. Hyperborea lives. Any area is going to be crafted by that life-cycle.
•  Resources! There are so many amazing resources already for Hyperborea, from the Drunken Debauchery table (a personal favorite) to the Celestial Phenomena table (to tear stuff up!) to the Masks and Names tables. These can help tremendously.
•  And so on

Anyway, that's whay I'd like to see. Not just adventure making but making adventures Hyperborean.

 

7/30/2014 8:59 am  #71


Re: AS&SH 2nd Print?

Nice posts, gentlemen. These are all points I do take to heart and appreciate.


Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerers of Hyperborea - A Role-Playing Game of Swords, Sorcery, and Weird Fantasy
 

7/30/2014 9:33 am  #72


Re: AS&SH 2nd Print?

I'm not sure that AS&SH (or any of the more "advanced" versions of the traditional fantasy role-playing game) is really that well-suited for a complete tyro of a DM.  There's just too much to absorb and too many judgment calls that have to be made.  My personal recommendation to an absolute beginner DM would be to run Moldvay Basic (or its free doppelganger, Labyrinth Lord) for a while before trying to tackle any of the more complex iterations.  Just my opinion! http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/happy.png


Michael Sipe 1979-2018
Rest in peace, brother.
 

7/30/2014 9:57 am  #73


Re: AS&SH 2nd Print?

@ Blackadder23
I don't think that AS&SH is more complex regarding its procedures than "basic" D&D types.
Not providing help to the Referee how to run the game is, paraphrasing Justin Alexander's metaphor*, like playing Risk or Monopoly without providing a board or guidelines how to create one.

*I must add Justin used it in a slightly different context, but still.

 

7/30/2014 12:47 pm  #74


Re: AS&SH 2nd Print?

Ynas Midgard wrote:

I don't think that AS&SH is more complex regarding its procedures than "basic" D&D types.

It has more "moving parts" to worry about (classes, spells, class abilities, alignments, etc.) and also more areas that require judgment calls (witness several discussions on this forum).  The various Basic versions of D&D (and LL) are very cut-and-dried, so the DM can concentrate on running the game rather than interpreting the meaning of rules.  Once he gains some confidence, he can move on to running an "advanced" game with looser rules and more interaction between the various components.  It's always possible to just dive right in, and some may succeed brilliantly, but as a general rule I would advise learning to walk before trying to run. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/wink.png


Ynas Midgard wrote:

Not providing help to the Referee how to run the game is, paraphrasing Justin Alexander's metaphor, like playing Risk or Monopoly without providing a board or guidelines how to create one.

Fortunately, Jeff's work in that regard was already done for him by Gary in the magnificent 1st edition Dungeon Master's Guide.  All that's really needed is a recommendation to read that marvelous tome, which is back in print (albeit with an ugly new WotC cover) and also readily available on ebay for just a few dollars.  It covers pretty much everything a new DM needs to know, straight from one of the creators of the hobby.  Any DM who hasn't read it is, in my judgment, wasting the time of everyone at the table.  I'm sorry if that sounds harsh, but that's my honest opinion. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/depressed.png

Last edited by Blackadder23 (7/30/2014 12:49 pm)


Michael Sipe 1979-2018
Rest in peace, brother.
 

7/31/2014 12:10 pm  #75


Re: AS&SH 2nd Print?

Blackadder23 wrote:

Ynas Midgard wrote:

I don't think that AS&SH is more complex regarding its procedures than "basic" D&D types.

It has more "moving parts" to worry about (classes, spells, class abilities, alignments, etc.) and also more areas that require judgment calls (witness several discussions on this forum).  The various Basic versions of D&D (and LL) are very cut-and-dried, so the DM can concentrate on running the game rather than interpreting the meaning of rules.

That's very interesting, because "basic" and "original" versions of the game are notorious for the ambiguity regarding many of its rules - one would think that entails more Referee decisions reegarding their resolution.

For instance, there are a lot less pre-defined combat actions in B/X than in AS&SH but OSR gamers would certainly agree that each of them (and more) could be done. In this case, I find AS&SH's combat actions quite helpful for they provide choices that the Referee is not expected to make interesting (they are mechanically interesting in themselves).

 

7/31/2014 1:49 pm  #76


Re: AS&SH 2nd Print?

Ynas Midgard wrote:

That's very interesting, because "basic" and "original" versions of the game are notorious for the ambiguity regarding many of its rules - one would think that entails more Referee decisions reegarding their resolution.

There's a huge difference between OD&D and the Basic sets.  I wouldn't recommend OD&D for the beginning DM either.  I don't think the rules of Basic D&D or Labyrinth Lord are ambiguous at all, except to bored bloggers with nothing better to do than invent controversies. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/wink.png


Ynas Midgard wrote:

For instance, there are a lot less pre-defined combat actions in B/X than in AS&SH but OSR gamers would certainly agree that each of them (and more) could be done. In this case, I find AS&SH's combat actions quite helpful for they provide choices that the Referee is not expected to make interesting (they are mechanically interesting in themselves).

You have found one OSR referee who certainly does not agree. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/cute.png
 When I run Basic your combat options are exactly what it says in the book: melee attack, missile attack, spell, move, move and attack.  You can tell me you're swinging from the chandelier before you attack if you want, but it's still a move and attack.  I don't see anything in the Basic rules that says "players are supposed to invent wacky combat actions and the DM is supposed to judge them".  You can do this of course, but it's not a requirement - which is why I say that Basic D&D, as written, is very cut-and-dried.  You can play the game exactly by the clearly-written rules until you feel more comfortable adding additional complications (like combat manuevers or whatever).  You really can't do that with AD&D, or OD&D, because of the enormous number of judgment calls in every aspect of the game.  It's hard to run those game "right out of the box" because they demand customization (in the sense of defining certain issues) before you can even start to run them. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/errr.png


I'm definitely not trying to bust your chops.  Opinions will differ.  And AS&SH is my favorite version of the "traditional fantasy role-playing game" - and that includes all of the TSR versions.  AS&SH is also far more clearly-written than AD&D, so it's theoretically somewhat more feasible to run it straight out of the box.  But I'm just not sure it would be the best "starter" version to run cold (to play, sure, since fewer judgment calls are required) and so I'm not sure it's worth adding a lot of extremely basic material for beginning referees.  They can get that for free on thousands of websites.  Why use precious pages reiterating all that stuff?  (My other concern about trying to make AS&SH an "introductory" game is the style.  Right now it's not written in Simplespeak and it contains literary and mythological references.  I'd hate to see that change in an attempt to make it more "accessible" - in the WotC sense of the word - to new referees. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/sad.png
 )

But ultimately it's up to Jeff.  I just wanted to voice a bit of dissent in that I actually appreciated the fact that he didn't waste (as I see it) a lot of pages on how to stock a dungeon or draw a wilderness map.  In my view, we already have Gary's massive and definitive tome for those topics, and it made me feel I got a lot more "meat" and less "filler" for my money.  Obviously, you feel differently, which is cool.  As I said, opinions will differ. http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/happy.png


Michael Sipe 1979-2018
Rest in peace, brother.
 

7/31/2014 5:23 pm  #77


Re: AS&SH 2nd Print?

Well, my apolgogies if my above post was misleading -- I really was not thinking of much more than the sort of bullet list Handy provided above. Just some tips that illustrate what heroic sword-and-sorcery gaming is, which (to me) is decidedly different than Tolkienesque high fantasy.

Last edited by Ghul (7/31/2014 5:24 pm)


Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerers of Hyperborea - A Role-Playing Game of Swords, Sorcery, and Weird Fantasy
 

7/31/2014 7:10 pm  #78


Re: AS&SH 2nd Print?

Ghul wrote:

Well, my apolgogies if my above post was misleading -- I really was not thinking of much more than the sort of bullet list Handy provided above. Just some tips that illustrate what heroic sword-and-sorcery gaming is, which (to me) is decidedly different than Tolkienesque high fantasy.

In this case less is more.


“How can I wear the harness of toil
And sweat at the daily round,
While in my soul forever
The drums of Pictdom sound?” 
 

7/31/2014 8:10 pm  #79


Re: AS&SH 2nd Print?

mabon5127 wrote:

Ghul wrote:

Well, my apolgogies if my above post was misleading -- I really was not thinking of much more than the sort of bullet list Handy provided above. Just some tips that illustrate what heroic sword-and-sorcery gaming is, which (to me) is decidedly different than Tolkienesque high fantasy.

In this case less is more.

I think so, Morgan. One thing we never managed to include in the first printing of the game was combat examples, and that is something I'll seek to remedy with the hardback release.
 


Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerers of Hyperborea - A Role-Playing Game of Swords, Sorcery, and Weird Fantasy
 

7/31/2014 10:37 pm  #80


Re: AS&SH 2nd Print?

Cannot wait for the hardbacks personally. I love my boxed set, but the spiral bound books are starting to show some wear and I've pretty much had to shelve them and stick to the pdf (nothing major, but I like to keep things as close to "as new" as possible). At some point I'm anxious for a reading copy.

 

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