Exalted: Any opinions?

Lundgren

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Yes, that doesn't sound so bad. As it is though, the charm is vague, overly powerful, and allows the solar to allow them to carry on indefinitely simply because of the low requirements involved. There were a lot of things that were neat in 2E, but also a lot of things that were bad in 2E. I feel that Taboo Inflicting Diatribe falls into the latter camp.
2E definitely is a "renovation project". It's like buying a rusty old car. If you're willing to put a lot of time into it, ripping out parts and putting it back together, you can end up with a really nice one. Still, even refurbished, it has to fit ones preferences. :smile:
 

Baeraad

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Unless you find the consequences of succeeding making interesting stories. "The road to hell is paved with good intentions," "winning the fights, but losing the war," and all that. :smile:
That argument is very appealing in theory, but it touches on one problem I have with Exalted - the fact that in order to run it the way you're apparently supposed to run it, you need one degree in history, another in economics, and a third in political philosophy. :tongue:

I don't know how a society reacts to the appearance of a sudden new taboo, is what I'm saying. I don't have the education required to know that. If that sort of thing is meant to have consequences beyond the obvious ones, especially ones that are going to come around and bite the PCs in the ass, then I'm going to need to get at least a few guidelines for what they're supposed to be.

(I have a similar gripe about the World of Darkness line, only with different degrees. I could have done with some more hints about just what you can and can't get done by bribing such-and-such official, if bribing officials is supposed to be how we commonly get things done)
 

Lundgren

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That argument is very appealing in theory, but it touches on one problem I have with Exalted - the fact that in order to run it the way you're apparently supposed to run it, you need one degree in history, another in economics, and a third in political philosophy. :tongue:
Yeah... I'm only dabbling in them...

I don't know how a society reacts to the appearance of a sudden new taboo, is what I'm saying. I don't have the education required to know that. If that sort of thing is meant to have consequences beyond the obvious ones, especially ones that are going to come around and bite the PCs in the ass, then I'm going to need to get at least a few guidelines for what they're supposed to be.
Also considering all the different potential variations, as "don't import from Lockshy" is quite different from "owning slaves is bad."

Just from the top of my head.
* Will people outside the group notice the difference, and how do they react?
* How will people inside the group try to do it without breaking the taboo?
* What will happen to those that heed the taboo?
* What will happen to those the taboo is about (those trading with Lockshy, or the now unemployed former slaves)?

"Within the last month" can not only be used to see if anyone will notice the Solar agitating for it, but to make sure it will take the rest of the gaming session, so there is time to think of potential domino effects, and using some devious friend as a sounding board or otherwise bounce ideas against. :smile:

(I have a similar gripe about the World of Darkness line, only with different degrees. I could have done with some more hints about just what you can and can't get done by bribing such-and-such official, if bribing officials is supposed to be how we commonly get things done)
Bribes? What bribe? It is just a small token of appreciation of that officials fine and expedient job. :tongue:
 

Baeraad

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Just from the top of my head.
* Will people outside the group notice the difference, and how do they react?
* How will people inside the group try to do it without breaking the taboo?
* What will happen to those that heed the taboo?
* What will happen to those the taboo is about (those trading with Lockshy, or the now unemployed former slaves)?
Yeah, see, I can think of answers to those questions that will completely screw the players over. And I can think of answers to those questions that will make everything work out just fine. I have no idea which set of answers I should go with. This is a thing that there should be some kind of rules or at least guidelines for.
 

zapbus

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Yeah, see, I can think of answers to those questions that will completely screw the players over. And I can think of answers to those questions that will make everything work out just fine. I have no idea which set of answers I should go with. This is a thing that there should be some kind of rules or at least guidelines for.
The current devs are apparently aware of this issue and are releasing a Storyteller Guide for the purpose of addressing this.
 

Skywalker

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Could you elaborate a bit more on this? Having played both, I feel that 3E and 2E are fairly different in terms of how they play, as well as design philosophy.
This thread has kind of taken off so I am going to bow out. But in answer to your question, the primary similarity between the two is the way they use layering of mechanics to fix perceived issues. Each layer may in and of itself be reasonable and robust, but in aggregate they weigh heavily on the system beneath and create a difficult and bloated mess. Overdrive is an example, but I see that as similar to 3e's different pools of XP to try and fix an issue with XP or creating new keywords like Supernal to create new tiers of power.

This is not really an unexpected approach when you get fans to design new editions of existing RPG. Those people are often skilled at patching issues they have has with those systems with their own house rules. However, these people do not have the experience design systems as a whole IMO, which is a skill that often their predecessors did have.
 

Chris Brady

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Its not the look that bothers me but (Forgive me, Rule of Cool Gods...) the practicality of those surfboard sized weapons. How do you use them in normal or close areas, in tight formations, etc? Their size might offer some advantages though, particularly for sheer intimidation (and there some pretty huge real world blades..like I forget the name a Japanese weapon meant to kill cavalry's horses... and possibly the rider at the same time. O.O)
The blade is known as a Zanbatō, literally 'Horse Killer' I believe. Also, when Samual had the God-Cutter, he only used it for two types of combat: Mass battlefield warfare which would have have wide open spaces and giant (Kaiju) monster slaying, where a 10ft (~3m) blade would do more damage than a basic 3-4ft (~1-1.3m) weapon would do against an 8ft (~2.4m) trunk of a neck. A good War (Demi-) God knows that it's about having the right tool for the right job. If you don't have the space, switch to something else.

Also, here's the thing I've noticed is that a lot of GM's tend to forget little things about having the ability to lift these 'surf boards'. Like collateral damage. If I'm a big 7 foot guy with the power to swing a 100lbs. (~48kg), 10ft (~3m) blade with ease and I'm inside a building? There's not going to be much of building left. I'm going to be able to slice chunks out of it with each arcing strike. And I'm likely to be tough enough to stay standing when said chunks invariably fall on me.

I TRY to remember that, because collateral damage is often a big thing in superhero games, and for ME, Exalted is a slightly more fantastical superheroic game style.

A benefit to Exalted stunt system is the player, if they want, can use the'fluff'to set up the differences of their giant weapon in play. As the game I can offer situational bonuses (or penalties) as well as I see it as appropriate. I think I kept things reasonably fair. There's been no complaints, but that might be due to the.45 I keep beside the GM scree. ;-)
I've never really been able to understand that, I can't seem to wrap my little brain around the concept.

I don't mind exotic looking weapons, armor and equipment overall. I mean I like bat'lifs (sp?) and I know a few hardcore Trekkies that think the're silly. End of the days, its all imagination and taste. What works in the game world is what works in that particular fiction (Lord, if this was that site about rpgs heads would be exploding now...) Its doesn't really even violate the "rule of cool" some folks just find the practical and nominally 'realistic cool.
The Bat'leth is a cool looking, but completely nonviable as a weapon. There's no real way to get a good leverage for a swing, that's why the sword was invented on earth. And frankly, most humanoid weapons would fall into the same design system, which admittedly makes for VERY boring alien weaponry.
 

Nexus

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Huh? That's not how I interpreted that charm. I interpret it so it makes it shameful on owning slaves, which could mean emancipation in time. However, it doesn't change anyone wanting or not wanting to own slaves. So mainly it just makes people stumbling over each other trying to rephrase slaveowning into something else; gossiping about those slave owners, while we proper and decent people have "lifetime employees" (to steal a phrase from the Swedish RPG Noir).
Interpretation of Charms got odd among the fans. Some insisted the written description were literal or very narrow with other saying essentially anything goes as long the results were the mechanical effect almost like an Effects based system something the game's writers (including Grabowski) expressed disdain for.

Go Fig...
 

Lundgren

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Yeah, see, I can think of answers to those questions that will completely screw the players over. And I can think of answers to those questions that will make everything work out just fine. I have no idea which set of answers I should go with. This is a thing that there should be some kind of rules or at least guidelines for.
Well, maybe its also because I'm pretty much a Sandbox GM/ST regardless of what RPG we're talking about, but if I have more than one possible answer; I either just pick one or roll a dice (or use more than one at once). I think the only wrong options is to pick the same set all of the time.

To me, Exalts should be able to change the world. So that the players might come up with a good enough plan so there isn't any fallout, or running around solving the fallout until all of the problems each solution fixes, is in a large part what Exalted is about for me. But this is also combined with that there are a lot of other Exalts, gods, elementals, and Rakshas out there with other ideas on what the world should be.

With some luck, the stuff in the Storyteller Guide that Zapbus mentioned will have what you want. :smile:

I'm definitely going to buy that book myself and mine it for ideas.
 

Lundgren

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Interpretation of Charms got odd among the fans. Some insisted the written description were literal or very narrow with other saying essentially anything goes as long the results were the mechanical effect almost like an Effects based system something the game's writers (including Grabowski) expressed disdain for.

Go Fig...
As long people can manage to agree around the gaming table... :smile: Which, especially when it comes to Exalted, I'm at times surprised enough people can agree enough to actually fill a group. :tongue:

Interpretations of Charms is after all not the only thing dividing the fans... :shock:
 

Nexus

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Well, maybe its also because I'm pretty much a Sandbox GM/ST regardless of what RPG we're talking about, but if I have more than one possible answer; I either just pick one or roll a dice (or use more than one at once). I think the only wrong options is to pick the same set all of the time.

To me, Exalts should be able to change the world. So that the players might come up with a good enough plan so there isn't any fallout, or running around solving the fallout until all of the problems each solution fixes, is in a large part what Exalted is about for me. But this is also combined with that there are a lot of other Exalts, gods, elementals, and Rakshas out there with other ideas on what the world should be.

With some luck, the stuff in the Storyteller Guide that Zapbus mentioned will have what you want. :smile:

I'm definitely going to buy that book myself and mine it for ideas.
Exalted really could use a a Storyteller's Guide and some material to assist GMs in determining what can be done and what was intended. And some consistency in those message. It felt like it shifted from major release to release. And in a sense it did since, for example, the different splats focused on difference moods and themes. Not all of them compatible or even desirable for all players and groups, Somewhat like the World of Darkness. In fact, one of pipe dreams for the franchise was that they would treat the different Exalted types as essentially different games line with someone divergent history and canon... The every one is a PC and meant to be the Hero/Protagonist type just made things a muddled kind of washed out gray mess (And IMO, the Solars suffered the most for it, but that's getting into a whole other rant).

I got into the idea that great power has great responsibility. When you can move mountain, being ham-fisted about it has repercussions. I thought that Solar just being human and prone to mistakes , prejudice, biases, etc might have been some of the reason for the "atrocities of the 1st Age Solars" more than all of them being mustache twirling psychos (though no doubt some of them were intoxicated/corrupted by their power or just assholes to begin with. That is human too.) "Curing Slavery", for instance isn't as simple as snapping your fingers. There are repercussions some of which have been mention: economics, housing and feeding, dealing with old prejudices, etc.

But some guidance or at least suggestions would have helped. GodBound appears to have done a much better job offering support for its premise in that sense.
 

Jetstream

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Exalted really could use a a Storyteller's Guide and some material to assist GMs in determining what can be done and what was intended.


First Draft (The first phase of a project that is about the work being done by writers, not dev prep)

  • M20 Victorian Mage (Mage: the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition)
  • Geist 2e Fiction Anthology (Geist: The Sin-Eaters 2nd Edition)
  • Exalted Essay Collection (Exalted)
  • Trinity Continuum Jumpstart (Trinity Continuum Core)
  • Wraith20 Fiction Anthology (Wraith: The Oblivion 20th Anniversary Edition)
  • One Foot in the Grave Jumpstart (Geist: The Sin-Eaters 2e)
  • Dragon-Blooded Novella #2 (Exalted 3rd Edition)
  • Exigents (Exalted 3rd Edition)
  • Terra Firma (Trinity Continuum: Aeon) Titanomachy (Scion 2nd Edition)
  • Crucible of Legends (Exalted 3rd Edition)
 

Lundgren

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Exalted really could use a a Storyteller's Guide and some material to assist GMs in determining what can be done and what was intended. And some consistency in those message. It felt like it shifted from major release to release. And in a sense it did since, for example, the different splats focused on difference moods and themes.
Well, I think Exalted can be used for a lot of different things, which I think is a great thing. Still, putting down a few of them with good guidelines would be a good idea.

On the other hand, I'm guessing I will end up with more comments like this then. :tongue:

"Ex3 made a deliberate attempt to go out of its way to make sure people get that, so fewer people leave with Lundgren's impression."

Not all of them compatible or even desirable for all players and groups, Somewhat like the World of Darkness.
Nothing will fit everyone.

In fact, one of pipe dreams for the franchise was that they would treat the different Exalted types as essentially different games line with someone divergent history and canon... The every one is a PC and meant to be the Hero/Protagonist type just made things a muddled kind of washed out gray mess (And IMO, the Solars suffered the most for it, but that's getting into a whole other rant).
I'm having pretty much the opposite opinion on this. But as I tend to say, I have an edition I'm happy with enough (well, after a certain amount of tweaking :grin: ), so I think it's great if they make a version that carter to other preferences. I wouldn't mind a cWoD vs nWoD/CofD treatment of Exalted.

I got into the idea that great power has great responsibility. When you can move mountain, being ham-fisted about it has repercussions. I thought that Solar just being human and prone to mistakes , prejudice, biases, etc might have been some of the reason for the "atrocities of the 1st Age Solars" more than all of them being mustache twirling psychos (though no doubt some of them were intoxicated/corrupted by their power or just assholes to begin with. That is human too.) "Curing Slavery", for instance isn't as simple as snapping your fingers. There are repercussions some of which have been mention: economics, housing and feeding, dealing with old prejudices, etc.
Here I think we do agree :smile: However, I guess I'm more coming from a "what happens when you thrust someone into power, without any checks or balances" when it comes to Solars and Lunars.

I think this also comes back to how one is selected to become an Exalt. Personally, I'm going with the "semi-sentient shards", or "seeking missile shards" as some tend to refer to it. So a Solar is more or lessjust someone that did something dangerous, or perceived dangerous, while having an above average "virtue" while a shard was available. A Lunar endured something. So, morals or values has nothing to do with it in my version of the setting. This clashes quite wildly with those thinking the Exaltes are picked by one of the Incarna, and Sol (maybe the others as well) are paragons of morality.

Then, when it comes to the topic of slavery; when I run Exalted I won't even allow a player to have "abolish all slavery" from start (unless running an Isekai, where the character is for example from our world and time). Just as an Exalted single-handely can trigger an industrial revolution, I find it perfectly fine if the character comes to the conclusion that all slavery is bad through play. The characters are from a world where slavery is common, so being against it should probably more start at the "making a better horse" end.

When it comes to the first age, a powerful group that isolate themselves from the general public (when being 1000+ year old, how many would bother making deep connections with more people that just will die on you?), the Great Curse that makes them a bit extra quirky (don't take much), and how humans tend to take the bad apples to be the representatives of other groups. Add a bit of propaganda and rumors on top of that, and the "atrocities of the 1st Age Solars" can be just that.
 

AsenRG

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Exalted really could use a a Storyteller's Guide and some material to assist GMs in determining what can be done and what was intended.
...if you add "but then you can also do this, and this, which we didn't intend but might be fun", then yeah.
If not? The Exalted community has way too much onetruewayism as it is, I don't see the need to add to it:smile:.

It felt like it shifted from major release to release. And in a sense it did since, for example, the different splats focused on difference moods and themes. Not all of them compatible or even desirable for all players and groups,
Exactly.
And this is as it should be, IMO. My group isn't like your group, and we'd probably find different stuff relevant:wink:.

I got into the idea that great power has great responsibility. When you can move mountain, being ham-fisted about it has repercussions.
That's true for Solars, Lunars, Sidereals, Alchemicals and DBs.
For Abyssals and Infernals? Not so much...
For Abyssals, it's more a case of "if all you have are murder instruments, how do you avoid treating people like sacks of blood-red water"?
For Infernals, it is more a "once you've made a pact with demons, how much good you think you can achieve, assuming you're even trying?"
Hence why not all groups need all themes.

I thought that Solar just being human and prone to mistakes , prejudice, biases, etc might have been some of the reason for the "atrocities of the 1st Age Solars" more than all of them being mustache twirling psychos (though no doubt some of them were intoxicated/corrupted by their power or just assholes to begin with. That is human too.)
For some, sure.
For others? See Lundgren's post.

Here I think we do agree :smile: However, I guess I'm more coming from a "what happens when you thrust someone into power, without any checks or balances" when it comes to Solars and Lunars.

I think this also comes back to how one is selected to become an Exalt. Personally, I'm going with the "semi-sentient shards", or "seeking missile shards" as some tend to refer to it. So a Solar is more or lessjust someone that did something dangerous, or perceived dangerous, while having an above average "virtue" while a shard was available. A Lunar endured something. So, morals or values has nothing to do with it in my version of the setting. This clashes quite wildly with those thinking the Exaltes are picked by one of the Incarna, and Sol (maybe the others as well) are paragons of morality.

(...)

When it comes to the first age, a powerful group that isolate themselves from the general public (when being 1000+ year old, how many would bother making deep connections with more people that just will die on you?), the Great Curse that makes them a bit extra quirky (don't take much), and how humans tend to take the bad apples to be the representatives of other groups. Add a bit of propaganda and rumors on top of that, and the "atrocities of the 1st Age Solars" can be just that.
And the two don't even contradict each other...

Then, when it comes to the topic of slavery; when I run Exalted I won't even allow a player to have "abolish all slavery" from start (unless running an Isekai, where the character is for example from our world and time). Just as an Exalted single-handely can trigger an industrial revolution, I find it perfectly fine if the character comes to the conclusion that all slavery is bad through play. The characters are from a world where slavery is common, so being against it should probably more start at the "making a better horse" end.
I agree, though I would allow it. Someone quirky enough might believe slavery is a bad thing, just as some people today espouse deeply unpopular (or outright mad) opinions.
But to this day, I've never had a player trying this and persisting long enough to make a difference:grin:!
 

Baeraad

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...if you add "but then you can also do this, and this, which we didn't intend but might be fun", then yeah.
If not? The Exalted community has way too much onetruewayism as it is, I don't see the need to add to it:smile:.
Meh, people argue endlessly about how the game is meant to be played because the game designers themselves seem to have been in two, three and fifty-seven minds about it, so every fan has honed in on one possible interpretation and is now defending it against all comers. It's not going to get any worse because one more book comes out and adds support to one particular viewpoint. Nor will it make it better, because fans who like that Book X said Y aren't going to abandon that because Book Z comes along and says W, but at least it might provide actual useful support for how to play at least one particular way.

I'm not holding my breath, though. I'll buy the book if I hear good things about it, even though I don't otherwise follow 3E, but I have a depressing suspicious than it will be long on bombastic rhetoric and short on practical advice. As usual. :sad:
 

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I ran Exalted 1e and 2e weekly for most of the 2000's. I jumped in somewhere between the release of 1e Lunars and 1e Abyssals, and my group and I have never had fun with an RPG like we did with Exalted. Two multi-year campaigns, and a host of smaller campaigns after. I was always able to keep the robust forum discussions separate from what happened at my group's table, and maybe my group's attitude was crucial to the game's success with us for so long. We never tried to play the rules like the Charms were a CCG or anything. My players and I just wanted to roam around whatever slice of Creation we were in telling awesome stories, and my players just wanted cool powers to use while doing so. They never invested heavily into perfect defences, and Paranoia Combat wasn't a thing at our table.

Coming in so early into the publishing run was probably a benefit. I was rediscovering Howard's Conan stories at the time, and lots of great wuxia and action anime was coming out. Samurai Jack was also enjoying it's first run around the same time period. So, I always viewed the books as a buffet of setting elements to run in my own style for our version of Creation. My goal was always to try and run Exalted as a sort of Miyazaki-Anno joint production of Robert E. Howard's Romance of the Three Kingdoms. But I also wasn't afraid to crib from whatever cool action media or video game I was playing at the time. Our servings from the Exalted 1e and 2e buffet were the things that we wanted, and it was delicious.

But Exalted 3e? It makes me weary, not excited. I've looked through it. I mean, I got a PDF of it from the Kickstarter. I like a lot of the setting changes, and don't care about the changes I don't like, because I've always treated the books as a toolkit, not holy writ. But the new combat system (which, honestly looks great and fun by itself) is cribbed from a video game, and 3e then applies the CCG-inspired Charm layer on top of that. As I explained to a friend who was having trouble understanding why I went from so excited by Exalted to so frustrated by it, "The Kickstarter promised a streamlining of the system. But what we got was a video game combat engine combined with CCG Charm exception mechanics, as interpreted through a tabletop RPG dice system without a computer to handle the complexities for you. They made it MORE complex and clunky."

And then there's the Kickstarter, the corebook development process, and how backers and fans were treated. After three years of hostility from the development team and the owner/head of Onyx Path, I cannot separate the process from the product. Holden, Morke, and Rich Thomas retreated from any public venue they didn't have some measure of direct or indirect control over, and proceeded to treat the fanbase like they were the ones wrong for being upset that a project they'd invested money in was years overdue and being developed in secrecy when the kickstarter promised openness and weekly updates on the process. After three years of being told we were toxic and acting entitled and we plebeians would see when the corebook finally came out and contained all the splendor the sun, the moon, AND the stars...we got the complicated cludge-mess I described above, with the added bonus of a completely seperate mechanical system for Craft and over 700 Charms in the corebook alone, all written in "natural language" with clarity that makes 1e Charms look like finely honed computer algorithms by comparison. In retrospect, I probably shouldn't have expected more from the team that tried to "fix" 2e with a third Essence pool and new Keyword system just for Dawn/Dusk castes, but we were promised different from the Kickstarter.

Whatever goes forward with the new line developers, I wish them luck. Because if they flop hard, there won't be a 4e, and I'd like there to be one. But I'm sitting out 3e, because no matter how nice a job the Exalted team does going forward, the edition will always be based on what I consider a poorly built mess of a foundation (corebook) with the added "bonus" of stinking like Holden and Morke's poop-smeared handprints. Maaaaybe if the current team rewrites the corebook - simplifying some of the subsystems, giving the Charms natural language fluff and technical language crunch (and some freaking Charm tree diagrams), consolidating some of the incremental-change Charms to tighten up the sprawling lists, and maybe organizing the book a little better...maybe I'll give it another shot. But honestly, I think I may be done with Onyx Path as a company.

In the meantime, I'm looking hard at Godbound, but I'm not a fan of the old-school DnD mechanics. So, I'm considering a massive project to convert Godbound's Words and Dominion systems wholesale to FFG's Genesys system, which I do like. Kevin writes his subsystems with such elegant modularity, it probably won't even be as much work as that sounds like. Onyx Path has made me tired and apathetic thinking about Exalted, so maybe it's time to go forge my own version and rediscover the magic for myself.
 

Nexus

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Nothing will fit everyone.
I never said something would. But making 'single' game where the so called protagonist all support and rely on sometimes vastly different themes, moods, even moralities just felt muddled when the games were mixed together, particularly in there were PCs of various splat in one group. The "from a certain point of vie" way of handling the history just muddled things more(For me) I played in such games and ran one. It always ended unsatisfactorily

3E did nail things down more but we didn't the path it took (which felt like a continuation of a trend across editions...) which, for us, was another strike against it. I would have vastly preferred a game line set up like the very early WoD with the different major character types in their own line. Kindred didn't really exist in Werewolf but were leeches, monstrous creatures of the Wyrm and Garou were't nature warrior of whatever in Vampire but creatures that haunted the wilderness and what kept them mostly in the cities. You could take chunks from game to game as wanted but combining them into one, particularly mixed 'parties' was more a "try at you own risk" option. At least maybe there might have fewer flame threads over which splat was the REAL good guys and why Splat (X) were all total assholes and needed to excised from Creation or even the game.

But that's never going to happen and we've essentially done that ourselves, even changing the history of Creation (Solar weren't there only ones that had some douche bags among their ranks and Sidereals and Dragonbloded weren't white hat Paladins in the affair.) Its not perfect, but works for us. Now we just have to find some mechanics that do the same.
 

Lundgren

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But that's never going to happen and we've essentially done that ourselves, even changing the history of Creation (Solar weren't there only ones that had some douche bags among their ranks and Sidereals and Dragonbloded weren't white hat Paladins in the affair.)
Sounds like you must have stumbled over some text I have ignored on so hard I'm not even aware it exists. Do you mean some writers have managed to take what was supposed to be Realm/Immaculate propaganda and write it as setting fact?

I know I tend to read a lot between the line at times, more reading how I can use and tweak things than what's actually written. But my take has always been that all have good people and douche-bags among them.

When it comes to the usurpation, my take on it have always been that it was a few hard core fanatics, while a lot of Dragon-Blooded where loyal to their Solar or didn't really cared. A good undercurrent of rumors building up tension and paranoia, years in advance, and the carnage and brutality in the aftermath, and several of those might think "yeah, those other Solars are as bat shit crazy and evil as they said."
 

Stevethulhu

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Sounds like you must have stumbled over some text I have ignored on so hard I'm not even aware it exists. Do you mean some writers have managed to take what was supposed to be Realm/Immaculate propaganda and write it as setting fact?
I wouldn’t be surprised. The same thing happened with 1st edition Legend of the Five Rings. A bunch of splats were published from an in world perspective. Only a vocal section of the audience took them at face value. And so did some of the writers.

The game was never quite the same after that.
 

Lundgren

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I wouldn’t be surprised. The same thing happened with 1st edition Legend of the Five Rings. A bunch of splats were published from an in world perspective. Only a vocal section of the audience took them at face value. And so did some of the writers.

The game was never quite the same after that.
A lot of the 1st ed books, at least the Aspect books for Dragon-Bloods were from in World perspectives, and at least 2nd apparently had little of oversight and direction for the writers. So quite possible.
 

Nexus

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Sounds like you must have stumbled over some text I have ignored on so hard I'm not even aware it exists. Do you mean some writers have managed to take what was supposed to be Realm/Immaculate propaganda and write it as setting fact?

I know I tend to read a lot between the line at times, more reading how I can use and tweak things than what's actually written. But my take has always been that all have good people and douche-bags among them.

When it comes to the usurpation, my take on it have always been that it was a few hard core fanatics, while a lot of Dragon-Blooded where loyal to their Solar or didn't really cared. A good undercurrent of rumors building up tension and paranoia, years in advance, and the carnage and brutality in the aftermath, and several of those might think "yeah, those other Solars are as bat shit crazy and evil as they said."
As I understood the text on the Usurpation from late 1st edition onward, particularly in 3rd its descriptions of the 1st Age Solars were quite literal. Commentary from the writers back this up. Heck the fanbase took it that way to the point of dogma including complaints that anything implied it wasn't literal (Sidereal prophecies aren't necessarily set when it come to the Essence users among other things or the canon (previously) existence of exceptions like the Prince and Princess of Whitewall or anything "deprotagonized" the Dragonblooded and Sid...

I'm still not entirely sure what that means, I guess having some of having made a mistake in the past and be mistake made them worse to play but having Solars monsters past and practically destined to become monsters again and walking threats to Creation one and all worked for their ''protagonization' Which I guess is fine for WW/OP/Etc usual fans. You play monsters in all the other games (except possible Hunter: the Reckoning) but that's not the impression or desire we had for Exalted and it felt off for the Solars where there were Abyssals, Infernals, even Lunars.They EAT people, for fraks sake, live 1000s (Longer than Solars) of years...often with animals, etc)

But I'm going down some old roads, likely even worse in my memory. My group and I have made our 'peace' with the game for the most part so really need to finish my bridge and get over it. :smile:
 

Nexus

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A lot of the 1st ed books, at least the Aspect books for Dragon-Bloods were from in World perspectives, and at least 2nd apparently had little of oversight and direction for the writers. So quite possible.
Recruiting the game developers and writers from the fans, mostly online with so little oversight definitely changed things, IMO.
 

TJS

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I think it's a mistake to write things from in-universe perspective anyway.

Unless it's explicitly player material and the GM material lays out what's really going on.

Because of course people are going to use the material you write. Otherwise why are they buying it?
 

AsenRG

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I think it's a mistake to write things from in-universe perspective anyway.

Unless it's explicitly player material and the GM material lays out what's really going on.

Because of course people are going to use the material you write. Otherwise why are they buying it?
Conversely, I find books written from an in universe perspective to be my favourites. Both as player and as a Referee.
 

Chris Brady

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Conversely, I find books written from an in universe perspective to be my favourites. Both as player and as a Referee.
The issue I have is: How can you trust the information? It's what I call the 'Amber Problem'. Amber's setting is all based on the narrative of two liars, and both have conflicting stories. Now, this may work for a novel series, but for a game in which you need physics and assumptions to be pretty reliable, especially one with esoteric rules on how the world works.

It's one thing for the history or the people, it's another when the rules conform to the unreliable narration.
 

EmperorNorton

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The issue I have is: How can you trust the information? It's what I call the 'Amber Problem'. Amber's setting is all based on the narrative of two liars, and both have conflicting stories. Now, this may work for a novel series, but for a game in which you need physics and assumptions to be pretty reliable, especially one with esoteric rules on how the world works.

It's one thing for the history or the people, it's another when the rules conform to the unreliable narration.
Except unreliable narrator gives the GM a lot of leeway to put their on spin on "what actually happened". Just saying, there are strengths and weaknesses of both designs. You don't NEED the rules to be written that way, you just prefer it.
 

Chris Brady

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Except unreliable narrator gives the GM a lot of leeway to put their on spin on "what actually happened". Just saying, there are strengths and weaknesses of both designs. You don't NEED the rules to be written that way, you just prefer it.
So example: When an unreliable author claims that X character could lift buses in one book, then another book with another unreliable author comes out and claims that X couldn't because no one can, and another says that both are exaggerating and X could only lift horses, yet one more claims it was two motorcycles...

Which rule do you go with?
 

Baulderstone

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So example: When an unreliable author claims that X character could lift buses in one book, then another book with another unreliable author comes out and claims that X couldn't because no one can, and another says that both are exaggerating and X could only lift horses, yet one more claims it was two motorcycles...

Which rule do you go with?
The one that suits my campaign. I'm of the opinion that any setting information is merely a suggestion that I can take or leave for my own game though.
 

Stevethulhu

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So example: When an unreliable author claims that X character could lift buses in one book, then another book with another unreliable author comes out and claims that X couldn't because no one can, and another says that both are exaggerating and X could only lift horses, yet one more claims it was two motorcycles...

Which rule do you go with?
The one that's actually supported by the rules seems a logical option. So I'm going to assume it's not there.
 

Nexus

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I think it's a mistake to write things from in-universe perspective anyway.

Unless it's explicitly player material and the GM material lays out what's really going on.

Because of course people are going to use the material you write. Otherwise why are they buying it?
That how I prefer it. If I want to change something, I can but the GM info being "from a certain point of view" (that often changes from sourcebook to sourcebook just makes it muddled to me. If I have the RAW story its easier to plan out the repercussions for any change I make for me.
 

AsenRG

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Except unreliable narrator gives the GM a lot of leeway to put their on spin on "what actually happened". Just saying, there are strengths and weaknesses of both designs. You don't NEED the rules to be written that way, you just prefer it.
Exactly:smile:.
The one that suits my campaign. I'm of the opinion that any setting information is merely a suggestion that I can take or leave for my own game though.
Well, duh, of course it is.
But the unereliable narrator has the added benefit of inducing fits in "cannon purists":wink:.

And I like the sight of their heads exploding:evil:!

Obviously @Nexus prefers it differently. So..."there's nothing that would make everyone happy".
 

zapbus

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Recruiting the game developers and writers from the fans, mostly online with so little oversight definitely changed things, IMO.
Honestly, what does it say when it was the ascended fans that were able to deliver on the only version of Lunars that I'd call actually good? :closed:

But yeah I really do like the changes they made to Lunars so far.
 

zapbus

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I’ll cop to that :tongue: but seriously, 1E Lunars was horrible and 2E was mediocre to bad.

So far the devs are clearing that low bar!
 

Skywalker

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Yep. The rules for Lunars were poorly done in 1e and 2e. As you say though, that is a very low bar to clear :smile:

I personally would caution against taking one specific example to support a broad statement about design skill though.
 

AsenRG

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That you like what they did. Even fans can have fans :smile:
Seriously, I don't even get that argument. Most, if not all, RPG designers were someone's fans at some point.
Even Gygax and Anderson were fans, presumably - at least of some wargame designers, if nothing else:grin:!
 
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Baulderstone

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Seriously, I don't even get that argument. Most, if not all, RPG designers were someone's fans at some point.
Even Gygax and Anderson were fans, presumably - at least of some wargame designers, if nothing else:grin:!
I think it is an argument that works better than applied to characters in fiction than game design, for example, the amount of dialogue in the revival of Doctor Who that revolves around how awesome and beloved the Doctor is. It doesn't make a lot of sense to me when talking about the mechanical design of a game.

I guess Exalted falls somewhere in the middle as it has a lot of big characters and metaplot, so maybe the argument does work in places. As I haven't bought any products since first edition, I really can't say.
 

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The main issue that can arise when fans take over a game is that they are, by definition, the people who are already playing and enjoying the game.

They are not the people who were turned away by problems real or perceived in the game. This may make it difficult to actually grow the audience of the game. It is likely to lead to a game becoming even more what it is. I can imagine a situation in which this could lead to a game carving out a clear and definite niche for itself where it might have prevously lacked one. However, it's probably more likely it would lead to the game appealing more and more to a narrowing circle of existing fans - especially if there are are aspects to the game, such as complexity, which are already a clear barrier to growing the game.

And sometimes fans are just too close so they can't see the woods for the trees. Like the guy who bought and put out a revised edition of Iron Heroes, of which most of the changes seemed to be dicking around with numerous small elements and introducing what looked like his own house rules, while not actually fixing any of the real issues of the game.

There can be a real benefit to getting someone from outside to come and take a fresh look at a system. Someone who doesn't take it for granted that things have to be a certain way.

I see this kind of thing all the time in my own field of education. For example, often the worst people to design a new curriculum for a course are the people who have been teaching it - because they've been hacking their own fixes to how to teach X for a long time and now they want to make sure that X is fixed and taught properly. Whereas someone from outside will look at the whole context of a course and ask "why are we even teaching X"? It's hard to let go of something you've invested time and energy in.
 
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