Official Errata Suggestion/Discussion Thread (changes you'd like to see made)

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Post  Stairc -Dan Felder on Thu Jul 18, 2013 2:06 am

Well said Philadelphus.

Sorry for limited commenting - I'm really busy tonight working on a project between me and Newbiespud and I really don't have much to say. After all, Kindulas and Nehiel Mori are still running the show - I just comment when I can. And all of us do have schedules.

But to all the various aspects being raised, I think you'll agree that changing 'pips' to 'energy' is a minor, minor change. Such terminology changes already have precedence with the change from Athletics to Brawn and Stunts to Athletics - which is actually a less clear shift (because those terms were already pretty intuitive). The system didn't crash and burn when that happened and I'm pretty sure it won't now. =)

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Post  ZamuelNow on Thu Jul 18, 2013 2:11 am

Stairc -Dan Felder wrote:The terminology's already been playtested extensively with new players and casuals find it easier to understand. I've had to answer lots of questions about what pips are, why they're called pips and what they stand for too prior to this. Trust me, none of us would make such a basic terminology change or risk irritating established players if we didn't have a lot to back it up with.

I'm curious to how pips were described when introduced to casuals. "What are pips?" seems to be something that should be picked up on quickly, especially if they play RPGs or really anything with a power/energy/fuel system. "Why they're called pips and what they stand for" seems to be more difficult to figure out with the in system information but that feels like a gap in explanation than the term itself. I consider myself a new player. I quickly figured out what pips did but I only just now find out what it stood for despite playing videogames that use PP for years. In a vacuum, I'd be neutral to either energy or pips as a name but I believe thematthew spotlights the biggest problem with this change in that it still causes issues with new players who come to existing games and don't know what people are talking about. There's also the problem that it feels like other changes would feel more pressing than this.
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Post  Xel Unknown on Thu Jul 18, 2013 2:17 am

ZamuelNow wrote:
Stairc -Dan Felder wrote:The terminology's already been playtested extensively with new players and casuals find it easier to understand. I've had to answer lots of questions about what pips are, why they're called pips and what they stand for too prior to this. Trust me, none of us would make such a basic terminology change or risk irritating established players if we didn't have a lot to back it up with.

I'm curious to how pips were described when introduced to casuals.  "What are pips?" seems to be something that should be picked up on quickly, especially if they play RPGs or really anything with a power/energy/fuel system.  "Why they're called pips and what they stand for" seems to be more difficult to figure out with the in system information but that feels like a gap in explanation than the term itself.  I consider myself a new player.  I quickly figured out what pips did but I only just now find out what it stood for despite playing videogames that use PP for years.  In a vacuum, I'd be neutral to either energy or pips as a name but I believe thematthew spotlights the biggest problem with this change in that it still causes issues with new players who come to existing games and don't know what people are talking about.  There's also the problem that it feels like other changes would feel more pressing than this.
I equally am wondering the same... Cause this system was my first gaming system. The only thing about combat the messed me up was the Interrupts and Reactions talents, I thought they could both be used at once. Which I was wrong about. I also knew nothing of videogames link with pips and PP stuff... I had no clue of that either myself. But still it was easy to pick up how pips worked when I was reading up on the combat side of things for the first time on my own.

And I'd also state that they're poorly explaining the why's of this change to make it worthwhile...
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Post  Stairc -Dan Felder on Thu Jul 18, 2013 2:23 am

ZamuelNow wrote:I'm curious to how pips were described when introduced to casuals.
 

They're described as, "Pips are basically how much energy you have to use your abilities."

ZamuelNow wrote:In a vacuum, I'd be neutral to either energy or pips as a name but I believe thematthew spotlights the biggest problem with this change in that it still causes issues with new players who come to existing games and don't know what people are talking about.
 

It wasn't a huge issue with the athletics/stunt change and brawn/athletics. That was a more complex change, as the term 'athletics' was still in use - but it meant something different now. This simpler change should be easier to grasp.

ZamuelNow wrote:There's also the problem that it feels like other changes would feel more pressing than this.

There certainly are lots of pressing changes. This is just an easy one to make. It doesn't require lots of additional balancing math or further playtesting beyond what's already occurred. It took a few minutes to implement. However it, like all changes, takes exponentially longer to discuss. I remember spending hours talking about the minor buffs to the flight talent tree that we made.

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Post  A1C Bronymous on Thu Jul 18, 2013 2:41 am

Well as minor an issue as this is, "Pips" is quicker to say, Pips is quicker to type, and by the sounds of your "playtesting" of the change, pips is slower to GRAWWK than energy the same way 1/100th of a second is slower than 1/1000th of a second. My scoreboard says Pips wins.

Also, now you guys have to change the name for Gather Energy, because you will not be gathering "energy" with it.
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Post  Ramsus on Thu Jul 18, 2013 2:51 am

I still think the largest issue is that pips being an empty term was good and meant it wouldn't be confused with flavor. Energy can mean a lot of things, pips is very clearly a mechanic.

On an aside, since there's no rule this topic can only have one discussion at once and it was brought up earlier. How about we change Horse-Sense to Sense? It doesn't really make sense as Horse-Sense anymore when I'm not even sure if we have any campaigns with only ponies at this point.
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Post  Xel Unknown on Thu Jul 18, 2013 3:23 am

To the topic of removal of horse form horse-sense, I don't mind it one bit. Seems logical.


To the topic of the Pips to Energy change:
Kindulas wrote:the term "pip" has been replaced by the more intuitive "energy"
The fact this is how you sprong this on us... Just seems heartless. And still as Bronyomus states really how is it so slow for people to get their minds around pips and how their mechanics works? And really does "energy" helps figure things get faster to a level that makes it a change that really helps everyone? Sure I can understand wanting to help the newbies and can respect that. But, really, this change feels like just dumbing it down becuase it "might" be too hard for some people. Or something akin to that... COULD WE GET REAL DATA FROM THESE CLAIMED PLAYTESTS that you make you come to think for some reason this change was needed and helpful for the system? Cause all we getting is "it easier for newbs" is the only reason for this term-change, which seems pointless...
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Post  Hayatecooper on Thu Jul 18, 2013 3:24 am

You want to make the game more intuitive? (Created before most of this thread. But I'm sticking with it)
In that case:

I would like a dedicated table detailing EXACTLY the size of creatures in game(Yes DMs can change it but something official would be nice), I would also like a dedicated section stating what the heal check can and can't do in regards to HP out of combat.(Preferably in a table format for X check restores X health just to keep things simple.)

Oh, and remove half of the combat talents. There are like HUNDREDS of the things to go through and that could be potentially confusing and disorientating for new players.

The Combat talent bit arise(The rest of it would actually be helpful) please. PLEASE. Do not claim a simple name change is to make something more intuitive, it's not. It's a name change. It function EXACTLY THE SAME as it did before you started calling it "Energy." Changing the name does not make something more intuitive just frustrating for everyone who has gotten used to calling it a certain thing.

TL:DR Don't rename stuff unless you are changing the mechanics as well, it's just annoying and a waste of time. And yes, I know the above was melodramatic but I feel that it makes my point crystal clear.
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Post  Stairc -Dan Felder on Thu Jul 18, 2013 3:26 am

Hayatecooper wrote:You want to make the game more intuitive? (Created before most of this thread. But I'm sticking with it)
In that case:

I would like a dedicated table detailing EXACTLY the size of creatures in game(Yes DMs can change it but something official would be nice), I would also like a dedicated section stating what the heal check can and can't do in regards to HP out of combat.(Preferably in a table format for X check restores X health just to keep things simple.)

These are both things that need to be clarified. Absolutely. Why don't you PM Kindulas and Nehiel about it, if you haven't already? That'll get their attention.

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Post  Hayatecooper on Thu Jul 18, 2013 3:28 am

Oh.. ahh.. can do!
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Post  Stairc -Dan Felder on Thu Jul 18, 2013 3:36 am

There's a lot of things that fell through the cracks due to the weird way this system came together. Because it was just built to be a thing we did for our oneshot, it was based around the idea of 'Experienced DM included' - where I could explain things like size categories and stuff to my players if they didn't know already. As the game's now developing into a standalone system, it needs to be self-contained in its rules.

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Post  Fury of the Tempest on Thu Jul 18, 2013 10:46 am

'Okay, I attack and gain energy! ... Wait. I just attacked, so I used energy to do so? Why am I gaining energy?! Ah! My brain! It burns!!!!'
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Post  tygerburningbright on Thu Jul 18, 2013 10:47 am

Um are you avoiding the request of evidence on purpose? I for one would very much like to see any of the so called out-cry for this change. Any transcript of your "Playtesting" or even PMs from "New players" would be appreciated. Oh and just one more thing did any one here actually get confused by PiPs for more than a few seconds the first time they read the Handbook?
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Post  Fury of the Tempest on Thu Jul 18, 2013 10:51 am

Did anyone get confused at all?
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Post  SparkImpulse on Thu Jul 18, 2013 12:08 pm

I was far more confused by Stairc's explanation of where pips came from, than I ever was by the player's handbook's exposition on the subject.

I'm a new PH, and have brought four players into the system this month who have never seen this system before, one of whom has only been playing DnD for a month or two and has no RPG experience before that. No one asked me "what are pips?" ... and it's a small, simple question, if it had come up "You spend them in battle"

They're actually not at all like energy ... they're a fiat currency that has no intrinsic meaning or value, but because we give them meaning, they gain the meaning we give them when we trade for them, or trade them back.
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Post  Stairc -Dan Felder on Thu Jul 18, 2013 1:56 pm

tygerburningbright wrote:Um are you avoiding the request of evidence on purpose? I for one would very much like to see any of the so called out-cry for this change.  Any transcript of your "Playtesting" or even PMs from "New players" would be appreciated.

Naturally, we don't hire a stenographer to record transcripts of playtests. We also don't use voice-recording software. What we do is try it out and note the differences. Don't have graphs or anything to show you.

Fury of the Tempest wrote:'Okay, I attack and gain energy! ... Wait. I just attacked, so I used energy to do so? Why am I gaining energy?! Ah! My brain! It burns!!!!'

*laughs*

Like everyone else, you can catch your breath passively. Just like a jogger will walk for a bit to catch his breath, but is still moving forward. That's what [+] powers represent, using a less stressful ability while you catch your breath.


As for people not having much problem with new players that have already read the rules - yes the rulebook is pretty well-written and does a good job explaining various concepts. However, as pips represent energy - we're just going to call them energy now.

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Post  Fury of the Tempest on Thu Jul 18, 2013 2:06 pm

Right. Of course. Because stabbing someone is SO relaxing! And of course, Draining Life and giving it to someone else is so easy to do and requires little to no effort!

PiP's work. Energy doesn't. Change is pointless either way.

The majority are against the change, so don't change.
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Post  Stairc -Dan Felder on Thu Jul 18, 2013 2:15 pm

You know, when you shout like that it doesn't really help convince me you're treating the subject with calm consideration.

No matter how you slice it, energy makes more sense than a made-up abstraction like pips. The sentences, "I've run out of energy" and, "How much energy do you have?" make sense in casual conversation. "I've run out of pips" doesn't make any sense unless you're talking about planting fruit.

Nothing is going to be absolutely perfect, but this is a bit slicker. After all, HP is a bit confusing (especially when you get into negative HP) - but having HP makes more sense than some abstract thing like "Tiks" that we made up.

On another note, does it really make sense to change 'Horse Sense' to 'Sense' in the pony versions? I mean, I know not everyone's a pony - but it's a nice bit of pony flavor. It also frankly makes a bit more sense, due to its use as a slang term, than just 'Sense'.

Oh, and before I forget, I think Zarhon's absolutely right about Judo Throw and It's Not This Day - they need serious buffs. Any suggestions?

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Post  Fury of the Tempest on Thu Jul 18, 2013 2:23 pm

Right. Because people are going to be talking about the combat in Pony Tales casually without playing the game and begin in combat at all.

Your wrong in that 'Energy' makes more sense, as it clashes hugely with the flavour of several of the moves. I've already given some examples, but for Crit Fisher, I have to be doing something to trigger the special moves, and that 'something' will require energy.

And then. Summoning. How on hell are you going to justify that summoning a spark - a ball of energy - is a restful action that allows one to recover their energy.

PiP's has been working completely fine beforehand, so there is no need to change it. These 'reasons' your giving sound more like excuses to me.

Also, I didn't shout.
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Post  tygerburningbright on Thu Jul 18, 2013 2:28 pm

So the only real reason you guys are making this change is because you feel like it no?

You have admitted that you did a good job explaining it in the handbook. And it looks like most of the people that are active in playing the game oppose the change also you can't present any of the "Complaints" made by "New Players" to back up your stance. So why are you making a change?

Some days it just feels like the dev team is trolling the lot of us...
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Post  ZamuelNow on Thu Jul 18, 2013 2:39 pm

Stairc -Dan Felder wrote:Oh, and before I forget, I think Zarhon's absolutely right about Judo Throw and It's Not This Day - they need serious buffs. Any suggestions?

All things considered, I'd just lower the cost of It's Not This Day. The rez is not where I see the value but rather in the Special Move activation. It basically comes down to what worth you place on Special Moves used on their own.
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Post  Ramsus on Thu Jul 18, 2013 2:48 pm

On the subject of Horse-Sense, you state it's slang but, this system is the only time I've seen it (of course it's not like I read fanfics and stuff) and I actually don't have the slightest idea what it's supposed to mean aside from the fact that you added the word horse in front of another word. To me it makes no more sense than Horse-Brawn, Horse-Precision, and Horse-Knowledge would.

Edit: Horse-Precision sounds like a really crummy super power. Then again, so does Horse-Sense. ("My Horse-Sense is tingling!" "Yes, there's an apple somewhere nearby. Whoop de doo.")
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Post  Zarhon on Thu Jul 18, 2013 2:58 pm

For Not This Day, I think it needs to be a free utility. It's a revival talent, so timing that revival is rather crucial. Although yeah, it's main feature is the special move trigger. Maybe rework the revive as something else?

More ideas include:
- Increasing the heal amount (1d6?).
- Adding some kind of temporary protection to that revived ally (e.g. can't be attacked for a turn, or high resist/temp hp values for a turn).
- Freeing up its use to non-KO'd targets as well (e.g. usable on bloodied targets as well, or those under 10 hp, with or without an extra cost).
- Rather than needing a KO / reviving, it works off of any effect that prevents them from normally acting (e.g. stuns, domination, KO, defeated, dead).
- Lowering cost (not sure how much a special would cost, if it takes a KO to do it).

Not This Day reworks:
[-6] IT IS NOT THIS DAY! - Free Utility
Target ally regains 1d4 hp, and performs one of their three Special Moves (their choice), ignoring any effect that would prevent them from doing so or otherwise hinder them. This talent costs two less PiPs if it is used on an ally that is at 0hp or lower.

For Judo throw, it was designed to be both offensive and defensive, but its unusable for the defense option in its current form. I suggested giving it a choice of "ally" and "enemy" option:
- the "ally" option is cheap (2 pips?) and lets you use it as a non-damaging way of punting an ally out of danger (or giving them enough time to gather pips - something like a ally-used smoke screen).
- the "enemy" (or creature) option lets you apply damage at a variable cost, or just fling them for no damage for cheap. Ultimately, it would cost 8 pips to do 3d12 damage.

In addition, the actual time the "fling" duration lasts needs to be reworked, to allow it to be usable irregardless of initiative (if used on an ally right after you, it's pretty much wasted).

Judo Throw rework:
[-2] Judo Throw - Standard Attack
Pick one of the following:
- Fling target ally away from the battle, removing them from combat until the end of your next turn, or any prior point of your choosing (a creature removed from combat cannot affect any other creature in the battle with combat talents or be affected by any combat talents - though it may still use [+] abilities to gain energy).
- Fling target creature away from the battle, removing it from combat until the end of its next turn. When using this option, you may deal damage to the creature, paying an extra 2 pips for every 1d12 damage, up to a maximum of 3d12 damage (for a total cost of -8 pips).
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Post  SparkImpulse on Thu Jul 18, 2013 3:07 pm

Ramsus wrote:On the subject of Horse-Sense, you state it's slang but, this system is the only time I've seen it

LOL at the 'super power' ... but, while it's fallen out of popular vernacular, yes horse sense is a common phrase. It means the same as common sense, and there have been whole articles devoted to diverting that phrase to "mule sense" because RL horses ... don't actually demonstrate much in the way of horse sense. Preternaturally sensitive to minutiae, which can save not only their hide, but that of their rider ... but actual sense? Sorry. As a horse owner, much as it pains me to say it, the phrase is just a tad misplaced.
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Post  Stairc -Dan Felder on Thu Jul 18, 2013 3:10 pm

@Fury - Fury, does walking require energy? Yes. Do joggers slow to a walk to catch their breath, getting some energy back, before jogging again? Yes. Before you repeat the "but *everything* costs energy" argument yet again - please acknowledge this analogy. [+] pip powers still do stuff, they're just not as stressful - more like slowing down your pace in a fight to catch your breath.

@Tyger - If you think I'm spending hours of my busy schedule responding to everyone specifically to troll you - then I don't see how anything I say at this point will make a difference. We've stated our reasons for the change, you don't agree with them. You've stated your reasons for opposing the change, you don't agree with them. At this point, you seem to think we're just wasting our time on a whim - so I don't see much of a reason to respond.

@Zamuel - The tricky part is figuring out precisely what that special is worth so we can make sure it is balanced. Each one is balanced *very* differently. Anyone have any thoughts?

@Ramsus - That's odd. Well, try googling "Horse Sense" and see what pops up. It's an idiom. If people aren't familiar with it though, it'll definitely look weird.

Oh, and a clarification on how we involve community feedback and what goes through our minds when people respond to a change or suggested change.

We look at the forums as a council of advisers. We want to hear what everyone has to say and we pay attention, even if we can't always respond, to everyone's arguments in our goal to make this a better system. As with any council of advisers, we also look at the track record of people posting. If someone has a habit of supporting changes or innovations that end up being great (such as lowering the racial barrier to utility talents and the inclusion of the Genetic Engineering expansion), we give them a bit of extra weight. If someone has a track record of opposing major changes, even when those changes end up working well, we keep that in mind when a new major change comes up. We'll consider everyone's advice, but we still need to agree with the logic behind it at the end of the day. If we don't, we'll try to make the decision we genuinely think is best.

Additionally, we're aware that the rule of thumb in community satisfaction is that people that like an announcement are less likely to loudly voice their opinion than those that dislike it - which is why Geek and Sundry (among others) tends to count a single supporting comment or like as equivalent to 10 opposing comments. This is just how community satisfaction is charted, the logic of the arguments for and against themselves still rule our decision making process.

Factor all that in to this particular change being mostly beneficial to new players while purely unsettling for existing players, and we have to further account for opposition based on that. After all, it doesn't offer much to help old players. And a terminology change isn't going to excite or delight new players, especially since the people it's made for are those that - by definition - probably aren't on the forums already. Their voices are silent, uncountable.

Also, change is pretty much always opposed at first - especially when it's a cosmetic change like this. Just look at the initial outcry over changing the card borders on MTG cards. It's legendary. Now people are cool with it.

We'll give the one-word-change a while for people to get acclimated to. Probably two months or so. Then we'll see what happens.


Last edited by Stairc -Dan Felder on Thu Jul 18, 2013 3:53 pm; edited 2 times in total

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