logo

Welcome Guest! To enable all features please Login or Register.

Notification

Icon
Error

Options
View
Go to last post Go to first unread
Offline vbwyrde  
#1 Posted : Wednesday, February 13, 2013 3:17:00 AM(UTC)
vbwyrde

Rank: Administration

Groups: Administrators, Registered
Joined: 4/18/2014(UTC)
Posts: 312
Man
United States

Hi Chris,
Thanks for bringing that up. It gives me an opportunity to think about the user experience from a fresh point of view.

As for the Elkron aspect, it is somewhat the equivalent of saying "Astrological Influence". It is core to the system as it links to the universal Alignment System which I plan to use to link all worlds via that singular thread. The Meta-Universe will have a 3D view of all worlds as spheres centered on that world's aggregate alignment, and will show the Alignment movements through time, and will, I hope, have some interesting philosophical and academic applications that I plan to have come into play in a later phase of the project.

The main use of the Elkron, as I envision it, is to maintain consistency within the mystical story-aspect of the game. The Elkron, with their correspondences (not currently a highly visible feature as it has to be worked into the Tarot aspect of the Interface) should help GMs keep the various Astrological Influences within their stories consistent and coherent. I actually did seven years of research on Astrology and Correspondences in order to "correctly" meld the Tarot with the 12 Planets (including of course Nirabu, aka Planet X) and the 12 Constellations, something as far as I know that has never been done this way before. That link between Tarot and Astrology was previously implied, but never implemented coherently. The inner-story coherence of having such a system to work with is profound, and I think it will reverberate with a large group of interested people once they see how it works.

For example, the Elkron of the Sun, Palamir, has as his Correspondences the following: Metal is Gold, Bird is Eagle, Tree is Oak, ..., etc. (there are a large number of items which are in the correspondence table). For those GMs interested in having a mystical aspect to their world (as most Fantasy does) it is a way of keeping the symbolism consistent for the GM. However, it is not mandatory that GMs use it, but is rather something that is in place for the many people who will want to use it. This Astrological Influence system has a lot of potential, as it ties the "Gods" and Alignment together in a way that has mechanical efficiency, and story development applications. I've used it in the past with great success, and was delighted to have that system when needed. That said, I don't use it constantly, but instead pepper my campaigns with correspondences symbols here and there where it makes sense during the course of the adventures.

By highlighting all of the correspondences in one test game a few years ago where I was focusing on this design aspect, I found it entirely remarkable how well that system worked and how fascinating it turned out to be by the end of the story. The Correspondences work like a kind of Jungian Archetype Map within the game stories, and it was surprising and something of a marvel how well it seemed that the puzzle pieces fit into place once looked at this way. Somewhat along the same lines as Hermel pulling the Dragon Card on the same night that the Draco Meteor Shower was falling, unknown to any of us. "Fascinating" is the best word I can find to describe that aspect of the Elkron System. But I fully understand that this aspect of the Elthos RPG may not be everyone's cup of tea. That's ok. It can also be safely ignored. Yet for those who do hook into it, I am hoping it will be a source of endless enjoyment and fascination.

Thus, the Elkron system is, in my overall design plan, an essential feature for those reasons. This is why Alignment will eventually be smoothed out, and made easier to manage, but for now it stands pretty much as a mostly-functional, but not completely finished, placeholder.

So as far as the Elkron are concerned, they can be seen as either "Gods" (ie ancient Pantheon such as the Greek or Summarian gods), or as disembodied Astrological Influences (if you ignore their Avatar Characters, which you can do), with associated correspondences for story purposes. The Elkron are given Characters (Avatars) as personifications, though as you see from my own game, they do not need to come into play. They are there also as place holders, but they don't necessarily need to be included in the individual Worlds.

So GMs may or may not take advantage of the Elkron and/or the Alignment System, and may want to ignore them (and Alignment) completely. If so, I could have a toggle in the World Configuration that lets you hide the Elkron Group from your view, so they don't show up in the Groups Administration. I can look into that.

Also that the Elkron show up in the Skills List is an interesting aspect I was working on early in the design phase of the project where Invocations and Skills both may have an Alignment / Elkron association. If so then their use can be tallied and used later as a Alignment Node for the Meta-Universe calculation of where the world is located in the Alignment Grid. The idea is that if there is, for example, a lot of combat in a world then it will drift in the direction of Chaotic Evil. If there is a lot of, say, Diplomacy, and far less combat, then it may drift in the direction of Lawful Good. Again, this aspect is not completely flushed out, and is there as a place holder. And again, I think I can put a World Config option to hide Alignment if GMs do not want to use that, or see that aspect of the system. Their worlds, however, may therefore (necessarily) be excluded from the Meta-Universe, which is fine, but may disadvantage those GMs in that sense later (ie - Oh gosh, my world doesn't show up in the Meta-Universe at all).

I could also Hide the Alignment Options in the Experience Gains section as well, based on the World Configuration Setting that the GM selects ("Hide Astrological Influences Features").

I think as long as I make it clear what the system is doing in regards to the Elkron and Alignment it should be ok. I will need to provide some verbiage about all of these points to the new GM when they create their world, so that the points will be clear - and will do so, as soon as I finish clarify the points for myself, with your and the other play testers help.

Those are the concepts behind the use of the Elkron. It's kind of a grand scheme, and that's my thinking in terms of where I want to go with it long term. Thoughts?
Offline grimjester  
#2 Posted : Wednesday, February 13, 2013 7:41:00 AM(UTC)
grimjester

Rank: Member

Groups: Registered
Joined: 4/24/2014(UTC)
Posts: 29

This is a follow up to a bug report where Manage Skills was causing an error:

Managing skills now works.

I am going to give you a first impression, without having delved into it deeply, or into related areas.

I went to skills first because I would like to have relatively few skills which tend to cover a lot. There will be broad skills which are expensive, but cover a wide range of abilities, and narrow skills, which are cheaper, but only cover one aspect of a skill. I feel like I will be able to do this with the app.

However, looking at the interface, I feel like the system is so deeply linked to Elthos, the world, that I can't make it my own, which I believe is your goal for the user. For example, there are Elkron, Thief, Fighter, Cleric and Spell Chanter categories on the Manage Skills page. I don't want that in my modern/super hero world. At best, I can ignore it.

It may be possible that this is configurable elsewhere in the software, but that isn't obvious from this page. For someone like me, who decided to start with skills, there is a high chance for frustration and abandoning the software.

This is just one example illustrating how confusing the identity of this software is. What is it? Is it a generic system, or is it a system for the Elthos world? As is, it appears to be solidly linked to the Elthos world which limits the user if they want to create their own world.

Personally, I don't care if it's Elthos specific or not. I just want it to be clear, so that I can decide, as a consumer, whether or not I'm going to use it. Elthos, the world, with its Elkron, will appeal to some people, but not everyone.
Offline grimjester  
#3 Posted : Wednesday, February 13, 2013 9:37:00 PM(UTC)
grimjester

Rank: Member

Groups: Registered
Joined: 4/24/2014(UTC)
Posts: 29

Thanks for the insight.

Okay. I've heard about your plans for the use of the specialized Tarot deck before, but never in writing, and in such detail.

I think that the idea will appeal to New Agey kind of people. I am mildly interested myself, as a potential GM, and as you know, I enjoy playing in your Elthos game world. The thing is, I don't know how many other people will be interested in the Tarot aspect. For my super hero modern world, I don't want the Elkron playing a major part, but I could easily see, and probably enjoy, a modern campaign where the player characters are enlightened about the Elkron.

It is now clear that the Elkron are to be integrated with the ODS and I support your vision 100%. The cards are beautiful too, and should make for some much needed eye candy in the ODS. However, I think that the option to click off Elkron references as a one time setting is a good one if you want the system to appeal to more people, because although I can't give you numbers, I'm betting that a significant percentage of people will be turned off by the Elkron.

I think that you really need to expand the rules to include the Tarot, the Elkron and your other goals if that's where you want to end up. As a player, I am simply tuning out the names of the various Elkron and substituting deities from other cultures and games to establish a reference, but in the end, I don't appreciate them because I haven't seen much tangible evidence or discussion of them in the game. Yes, I know that you've weaved them in, but as a player, I'm not seeing the beauty of it the way you are.

Elkron aside, what was going on with the Cleric, Thief and Spell Chanter sections in skill management? Is this configurable? If it isn't, I see this as a problem if Elthos is supposed to be a cross genre system. I am also confused by the codes, despite the key. I know that I could pour through the rules and the rest of the site to clear things up, but I'm giving you my first impression, which I believe is important. You don't want someone to be turned off by something early on and give up. A wizard format, where options are explained and taken in a specific order might help. (That would be A LOT of work, wouldn't it? :D )
Offline vbwyrde  
#4 Posted : Thursday, February 14, 2013 3:29:00 AM(UTC)
vbwyrde

Rank: Administration

Groups: Administrators, Registered
Joined: 4/18/2014(UTC)
Posts: 312
Man
United States

Originally Posted by: grimjester Go to Quoted Post
Thanks for the insight.

Okay. I've heard about your plans for the use of the specialized Tarot deck before, but never in writing, and in such detail.

I think that the idea will appeal to New Agey kind of people. I am mildly interested myself, as a potential GM, and as you know, I enjoy playing in your Elthos game world. The thing is, I don't know how many other people will be interested in the Tarot aspect. For my super hero modern world, I don't want the Elkron playing a major part, but I could easily see, and probably enjoy, a modern campaign where the player characters are enlightened about the Elkron.


I agree with you about the New Agey people. I think, though, that it may be compelling for any GM who has the idea that they want some sort of coherency in the mystical backdrop of their worlds, but have never been able to make that work because there's no readily available framework into which symbols and correspodences tie together and "make sense". That's the big advantage to the Elthos Tarot. This applies to New Agey GMs (and non GMs who may simply be interested in the Elthos Tarot on its own, separate from the game system), but may also appeal for that reason to non-New Agey GMs as well. I'm not particularly New Agey myself, and it still appeals to me a lot. In fact I created the Elthos Tarot because I wanted a coherent mystical symbolism to work with and couldn't find one. Seven years later - I have one. I'm nice guy. I share it. Now WE have one. :) But of course, not everyone is interested in that side of the game, and there's a lot of Gamists out there who enjoy the game for its tactical aspects, in which case all this hubbub about the Tarot won't make a wit of difference. That's ok. They can ignore it safely and still use the Elthos ODS for it's tactical aspects if they like that side of it.

Originally Posted by: grimjester Go to Quoted Post

It is now clear that the Elkron are to be integrated with the ODS and I support your vision 100%. The cards are beautiful too, and should make for some much needed eye candy in the ODS. However, I think that the option to click off Elkron references as a one time setting is a good one if you want the system to appeal to more people, because although I can't give you numbers, I'm betting that a significant percentage of people will be turned off by the Elkron.


Yup. Understood. For now I'm going to say please ignore it. I'm adding this to the features list but it's more of a "nice to have" option than a "OMG the game is broken" kind of thing. I will, however, definitely have to put up some verbeage on the site about what's going on with the Elkron and make the Tarot Page stand out more for GMs. That needs to be beefed up before I do, but it's not a huge amount of work. Can do. I'll add those two things to the To Do List. Thanks.

Originally Posted by: grimjester Go to Quoted Post

I think that you really need to expand the rules to include the Tarot, the Elkron and your other goals if that's where you want to end up. As a player, I am simply tuning out the names of the various Elkron and substituting deities from other cultures and games to establish a reference, but in the end, I don't appreciate them because I haven't seen much tangible evidence or discussion of them in the game. Yes, I know that you've weaved them in, but as a player, I'm not seeing the beauty of it the way you are.


Agreed. I'm planning to do that.

Originally Posted by: grimjester Go to Quoted Post

Elkron aside, what was going on with the Cleric, Thief and Spell Chanter sections in skill management? Is this configurable? If it isn't, I see this as a problem if Elthos is supposed to be a cross genre system. I am also confused by the codes, despite the key. I know that I could pour through the rules and the rest of the site to clear things up, but I'm giving you my first impression, which I believe is important. You don't want someone to be turned off by something early on and give up. A wizard format, where options are explained and taken in a specific order might help. (That would be A LOT of work, wouldn't it? :D )


Yes. A LOT of work!! :shock: ... Making that Wizardy is something I'm not quite prepared to do because it is a LOT of work, and really quite unnecessary once the GM gets the idea of how that section works, which takes about 10 minutes. What I can do, and I think this is a good idea, is provide a MUCH better instruction manual for that page, and maybe even an explanatory video to make it easy to understand.

Here's what the GM needs to know about that screen:

Skills are configured according to who can learn them. Remember, any class can USE a skill without learning it, with a Skill Level of 1. Skills when learned give a bonus on Skill Level, but cost Skill Learning Points. Naturally, some Skills are not appropriate for some Classes, while other Skills may be appropriate for all Classes. The difference between Primary and Elective Skills is how much Experience they award when used. Primary Skills, which are specific to the given Guild Class, earn more Experience when used successfully. For example Fighters using Weapons skills earn more Experience than Fighters using an Elective Skill such as Leather Working. Some Skills, on the other hand are downright Prohibited by certain Classes. Clerics can not, for example, learn Pick Pocketing. Some Skills, like Kung Fu, can only be learned by specific multi-classes. So in that case the sub-classes are Combined into a Multi-Class. Monks are Thief-Fighter-Clerics. So Kung Fu Skills, which can only be learned by Monks, requires the Combination of those three Sub-Classes to learn the Skill, and when learned by a Monk it is as a Primary Skill. From the system point of view these selections show up in the list of Available Skills for the Character, either in their Primary or Elective Lists, according to their Level (unless the override checkboxes are clicked, which then shows all Skills).

I realize that is a bit complicated. But not *That* complicated, and my feeling is it is not quite worth creating a very difficult-to-program wizard interface (not even sure I have an idea how I would approach that) to compensate for. If I can provide a clear definition of how the system works, that's easy enough to understand, then that should, I think and hope, suffice. Otherwise I will indeed have to reconsider the design. I may have to reconsider it anyway, of course, but that is what the GM testing is all about. And thanks for taking the pains and time to help me with this!

Parenthetically, what you might find really annoying is the Guild Class Screen where you have to assign "Thief" "Fighter" "SpellChanter" and/or "Cleric" as the base Classes for any new Multi-Classes you create. That should be, and will become, checkboxes.

All of which is not to say that I have totally missed your point about these four Primary Classes being tied at the hip to the Fantasy Genre. I think that's what you were getting at. Yup. That does seem to be the case. But is it really? We can discuss this one philosophically of course. But from a system perspective changing that aspect would indeed be a HUGE amount of work. HUGE. read that again. HUUUUUUUGE. So I won't take that one lightly. But I will consider it, if it turns out that having those four as the specific base classes causes a HUUUUUGE problem with the multi-genre aspect of the system.

:)
mark
Offline grimjester  
#5 Posted : Monday, February 18, 2013 5:23:00 PM(UTC)
grimjester

Rank: Member

Groups: Registered
Joined: 4/24/2014(UTC)
Posts: 29

How about making the terms more generic?

SpellChanter=Brainy
Fighter=Brawny
Cleric=Holy
Thief=Sneaky

The terms Cleric and Spell Chanter are too fantasy for a system that can handle any genre.
Offline vbwyrde  
#6 Posted : Monday, February 18, 2013 9:54:00 PM(UTC)
vbwyrde

Rank: Administration

Groups: Administrators, Registered
Joined: 4/18/2014(UTC)
Posts: 312
Man
United States

Originally Posted by: grimjester Go to Quoted Post
How about making the terms more generic?

SpellChanter=Brainy
Fighter=Brawny
Cleric=Holy
Thief=Sneaky

The terms Cleric and Spell Chanter are too fantasy for a system that can handle any genre.


I understand your intention, but whatever they might get changed to, they have to work as Class names.

"What are you?"

"I"m a Fighter" ... vs... "I'm a Brawny"

... so they have to fit like that.

"I'm a sneaky" ... does not work.

As for the terms not being cross-genre enough, I'm thinking of genres as Eras in human history. Every era has had these four classifications. There have always been Fighters, and Thieves. So those two are probably ok they way they are. SpellChanter and Cleric are possibly not completely cross-genre, and could possibly be changed. SpellChanter could be something like "Magic User", and Cleric could be something like "Holy Man". I never liked the term "Magic User" for some reason, but I could possibly live with it. "Holy Man"... it's ok. I'm not sure, though how much difference that would make.

One thought I have is that there could be Base Class Overrides for the names, so if you want to rename any of the four Base Classes for your world you could name them whatever you want. But there have to be four names, and the names would have to make sense in terms of multi-class skills. I could contemplate doing something like that, and let the GM decide. That would be a significant amount of work, but it could be done.

I'm not seeing it as urgent as the names will probably work as is for most worlds. But if you think Base Class Overrides is a good enough solution, I can add it to the Enhancements list.
Users browsing this topic
Guest
Forum Jump  
You cannot post new topics in this forum.
You cannot reply to topics in this forum.
You cannot delete your posts in this forum.
You cannot edit your posts in this forum.
You cannot create polls in this forum.
You cannot vote in polls in this forum.

Powered by YAF 2.1.1 | YAF © 2003-2019, Yet Another Forum.NET
This page was generated in 0.341 seconds.