Reprise: 0 and 1, or The Problem With RPG Combat

This post was originally published on August 11, 2008. I’ve found myself revisiting a lot of my topics, looking at different angles or finding alterations to make to my position, but my thoughts on this subject have stayed pretty constant.
I’ve managed to avoid most of the typical problems with my game groups. We don’t [...]

The Generic Villain on the Proper Use of Philosophy

So you’re a Hand of Darkness who runs to the intellectual side of things. You have style. Depth. The soul of a poet, inherent rather than somewhere in your collection of odd mad scientist trinkets. You might even say you’re a philosophical sort—and being intelligent, you know how not to make the mistakes that turn [...]

The Generic Villain on How Not To Use Philosophy

Even before insanity stopped being a decent excuse to run around conquering or destroying worlds, we Hands of Darkness were often deep thinkers. And why wouldn’t we be? From a Laws of Dramatics perspective, intelligence was often more aligned with evil than mere strength, for the warrior was valued for more for his looks, strength [...]

Gaming Philosophy: Up to Chance

I’ve seen plenty of arguments about the matter of random chance in an RPG. Some people love it, for the risk involved; some don’t, for the way it takes the power to resolve out of their hands. Some don’t like the way the die rolls interfere with their suspension of disbelief, some just plain love [...]

Truth and the RPG

As I finished my riff last week about laying down the canon integration rules in my timeline for newbies, I found one tangentially related question bugging me. The game plays very fast and loose with its setting canon; that’s practically a signature style for me. On the other hand, the numerous bits and pieces of [...]

The Generic Villain’s Digression on Dramatics

I may follow the Laws of Dramatics, I may study and reference them constantly (it’s how you survive in this game, need I say more?), but I’m not going to say that they always make sense. They fit patterns, yes, but I don’t think there’s any logic, human or otherwise, that could fully encompass them. [...]

Generic Villain’s Philosophy Corner: What Is Villainy?

I recently stumbled across a question: What is it that makes us villains, in particular? Why are we the bad guys? Yeah, it’s a little more philosophical than our usual, but it’s worth asking, and even more worth throwing your conclusions in the hero’s face. Just don’t spend so much time contemplating it that you [...]