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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kaptin Keen View Post
    Similarly, some roleplayers find the idea of playing without any numbers or dice rolls to be liberating. I'm going to claim there's a big overlap between non-optimizers, and people who enjoy free-form.
    And Yes I know, free forming is liberating for me as a GM as well. Then I'm fully in the right to negate my players agency and steer the game into the direction I want to and adjucate in a way that serves the narrative best.


    Let me tell you a true story about a power gamer that took part in a GM-less free forming session with me. First he said that his character was very strong, in fact his character was the stronges man in the village. This village was known for having the strongest men in the region, in fact the village held a strong man competition that he had won where all the strongest men from the country had taken part. In fact the some of the gods were jelous of his strenght as his character was stronger than them.

    Now the adventures we were trying to tell weren't about PC's with godly strength, it just didn't fit in. But the player realizing that there was no GM to keep him in check just made his character stronger and stronger until the group told him that his character didn't fit in. So even in freeform you can try to make the character as strong/powerful as you can but like in all other system or systemless games the GM is in his right to veto your character.

    I as a GM will always look to how a character will contribute to the party and adventures we are planning for. If I feel the character won't fit in or is mechanically unbalanced I will work with the player to fix the character or just plain veto him. If somebody ever again comes up with a character that is really a god slumming with some adventurers then NO

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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by 2D8HP View Post
    .
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    If you saw the Errol Flynn movie about the Sea Hawk then that isn't based on the book but an independent adventure.

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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by RazorChain View Post
    If you saw the Errol Flynn movie about the Sea Hawk then that isn't based on the book but an independent adventure.
    .
    Oh yes, I saw the movie, first on television, and then in 1979, on the 400th anniversary of the Golden Hind landing in California, there was a kid-oriented museum exhibition on Sir Francis Drake's circumnavigation of the world, including Elizabethan costumes one could try on, and a screening of The Sea Hawk, on the basis that many of Thorpe's deeds in the film were based on Drake's.

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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by 2D8HP View Post
    Either I'm emulating a specific character from fiction, or combining traits from more than one, or I'm emulating abilities.
    Nice. I do something similar. I will start with a specific favorite character, and then decide exactly how mine will differ from the literary one.

    I built an 2E thief based initially on Tarzan - emphasis on climb, hide, move silently, jungle lore, etc., as an orphan loner who was uncomfortable in cities or crowds, and had no knowledge of his parents or background. He had elven abilities, but heard the word "elf" for the first time at third level. [Then he was changed even further, becasue we got to the table and the others were a Fighter, a Ranger, and a Paladin, and I quickly turned Treewalker into a Thief/Wizard, just to get some spells in the party.]

    My Dr. Strange version superhero was Dr. MacAbre (John MacAubrey, Ph.D.). But he had a multiform he didn't have complete control over - he would occasionally change into a wolf, a bat, or a mist, So being concerned that he might be becoming a vampire, he joined a super group (the other PCs) so he could be taken down if he became evil.

    Doli and Felix were two dwarf brothers, out to get powerful enough to take revenge on the ones who had slaughtered their five brothers. [You have to think in terms of other languages to recognize Doli and Felix as Grumpy and Happy.]

    Jean-Louis was a Flashing Blades character - a street rat based on Disney's Aladdin. But his Secret (every FB character must have one) was Secret Origin. He had no idea why he was left as a baby on the steps of Notre Dame. [Years later, when Disney's version of The Hunchback of Notre Dame came out, I was bemused that I had built a climbing orphan raised at Notre Dame based on a Disney hero, before Disney came out with exactly that.

    Pteppic was a 1e wizard based on Terry Pratchett's Pteppicymon. He was a son of the Pharaoh, trained in an exotic skill, but obviously a wizard, not an assassin. Nonetheless, I gave him a foreign frame of mind from his schooling, and he never trusted the vizier.

    But in each case, I worked with the GM to make optimize the characer's connection to his world, and I optimized the skills to fit that role as effectively as possible.

    And my examples started with each of the three things I try to optimize. Treewalker's character came first, Dr. MacAbre's powers did, and Pteppicymon started by trying to fit into the DM's ancient Egyptian world. But in all cases, I ended up with optimized character, optimized mechanics, and optimized place in the world (to the best of my ability).

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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by gkathellar View Post

    Simply put: optimization is goal-oriented management of mechanical options.
    Looks good enough, Optimization = Anti Role Playing.

    Quote Originally Posted by gkathellar View Post
    The optimizer question's, however, is, "is there a better way to represent that than Iron Gut?" Better could mean more potent, or more flavorful, or that it has lower opportunity costs, or that it has broader applicability. Depending on the parameters of the exercise, the answer will vary.
    See your going beyond just optimization to Exportation: How can I exploit the rules of the game to get what I want to Roll Play.

    Quote Originally Posted by gkathellar View Post
    Even most theoretical optimization is very clearly not about "winning," because then it would just be Pun-Pun and we'd all go home and eat sandwiches. It's about, "how can we use a convergence of mechanics to accomplish a particular set of conditions?" This is why we have builds like the mailman ("how can we create an extremely reliable damaging spellcaster") or ubermounts ("how can we create the world's baddest horse?").
    Except you forget the other parts about Optimzers:

    1.They want to show off and stroke their egos and awe an audience
    2.They want to ruin the fun and the game for others.

    So they won't just sit home. They will lie and sneak into a game and do their best to ruin it and get a good laugh.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay R View Post
    Getting back to the point of this thread, what are the things you are optimizing during character creation?
    I just don't get setting the bar so low that everything is optimization. Like ''my character grew up by the ocean so I Super Duper Optimized my character and took a rank in Profession(fishing)!"

    Quote Originally Posted by NichG View Post

    No game mechanics were involved in the blackmail material or how it would function, but it was definitely a form of optimization to increase my future ability to influence events.
    So now optimization is just being clever? Or playing the game smart?

    Like saying ''my character stops and listens at the door as my character is so optimized".

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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by Darth Ultron View Post
    Looks good enough, Optimization = Anti Role Playing.
    You keep on saying this and then it keeps on not being true.
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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jormengand View Post
    You keep on saying this and then it keeps on not being true.
    Personally I think your overusing the term. Don't put my roleplaying under the same label as what you do. I DON'T want to identify with what you do, because I don't want to identify with otpimization. Thats all there is to it.
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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by Darth Ultron View Post
    So now optimization is just being clever? Or playing the game smart?

    Like saying ''my character stops and listens at the door as my character is so optimized".
    Optimization is, given a set of options, picking options in order to maximize some aspect of the outcome. The main thing that makes optimization behave differently as an approach is that the outcome is held above the method (although the method can be factored in to how the outcome is evaluated). That means that actions or choices may not appear to be immediately coherent, or may not have explanations that fully mesh with the apparent context or 'fluff', if those aspects are not explicitly included in what you're optimizing for. That's what tends to give it a dissonant feeling - someone at the table is making choices on the basis of a goal that other players or the GM disagree should actually be the goal.

    For example, with my spy character, my goal there was 'results are the most important thing, respecting my chain of command and hierarchy is not important'. So I chose actions out of the set of possibilities that maximized that long-term objective. Someone could easily object to my characterization though, saying 'Hey wait a minute, that's incredibly disloyal, doesn't that bother him?'. The former point of view is focused on outcomes, whereas the latter point of view is based on the feeling of appropriateness of an action given (in this case, what the other person assumes) the character's personality is like. Of course in this case, the character's personality is pretty cold, so favoring long-term objectives over the good or bad feeling of an immediate action was consistent. But as part of that optimization process, to some degree 'the character's personality was cold because in that game I as a player prioritized bringing about long-term results over e.g. having a lot of high energy emotional scenes'.

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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Raziere View Post
    Personally I think your overusing the term. Don't put my roleplaying under the same label as what you do. I DON'T want to identify with what you do, because I don't want to identify with otpimization. Thats all there is to it.
    What?

    That entire post is definitely a sentence with a meaning but I cannot for all that is great and good figure out the relevance apart from the fact that it uses some of the same words. You don't want me to call your roleplaying roleplaying? Uh, okay, fine. I'll call it, uh, pretending that your character is good at things the mechanics don't support them being good at?
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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jormengand View Post
    What?

    That entire post is definitely a sentence with a meaning but I cannot for all that is great and good figure out the relevance apart from the fact that it uses some of the same words. You don't want me to call your roleplaying roleplaying? Uh, okay, fine. I'll call it, uh, pretending that your character is good at things the mechanics don't support them being good at?
    No, I'm a roleplayer. I'm not an optimizer. I can be good at things without your stupid umbrellla term, thank you very much.
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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Raziere View Post
    No, I'm a roleplayer. I'm not an optimizer. I can be good at things without your stupid umbrellla term, thank you very much.
    Okay?

    But I happen to be both. So there was no purpose in objecting to my point that optimisation is not "Anti-roleplaying."

    But then again, you doing something with no real purpose ceased to surprise me some time along the line.
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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jormengand View Post
    Okay?

    But I happen to be both. So there was no purpose in objecting to my point that optimisation is not "Anti-roleplaying."

    But then again, you doing something with no real purpose ceased to surprise me some time along the line.
    That doesn't matter.

    I don't identify with optimization. don't put me under the label. Whatever you feel or think about it has nothing to do with that.
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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Raziere View Post
    That doesn't matter.

    I don't identify with optimization. don't put me under the label. Whatever you feel or think about it has nothing to do with that.
    What? Okay, okay, now I know you're BSing. Show me where I said that you were an optimiser. All I said was that DU keeps on saying that optimisation is anti-roleplaying, and that that keeps on not being true. That's it!
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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jormengand View Post
    What? Okay, okay, now I know you're BSing. Show me where I said that you were an optimiser. All I said was that DU keeps on saying that optimisation is anti-roleplaying, and that that keeps on not being true. That's it!
    Indeed, it's so not true that there's even a name for it...

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    I'm hereby proposing a new logical fallacy. It's not a new idea, but maybe with a catchy name (like the Oberoni Fallacy) it will catch on.


    The Stormwind Fallacy, aka the Roleplayer vs Rollplayer Fallacy Just because one optimizes his characters mechanically does not mean that they cannot also roleplay, and vice versa.


    Corollary: Doing one in a game does not preclude, nor infringe upon, the ability to do the other in the same game.


    Generalization 1: One is not automatically a worse roleplayer if he optimizes, and vice versa.
    Generalization 2: A non-optimized character is not automatically roleplayed better than an optimized one, and vice versa.


    (I admit that there are some diehards on both sides -- the RP fanatics who refuse to optimize as if strong characters were the mark of the Devil and the min/max munchkins who couldn't RP their way out of a paper bag without setting it on fire -- though I see these as extreme examples. The vast majority of people are in between, and thus the generalizations hold. The key word is 'automatically')


    Proof: These two elements rely on different aspects of a player's gameplay. Optimization factors in to how well one understands the rules and handles synergies to produce a very effective end result. Roleplaying deals with how well a player can act in character and behave as if he was someone else. A person can act while understanding the rules, and can build something powerful while still handling an effective character. There is nothing in the game -- mechanical or otherwise -- restricting one if you participate in the other.


    Claiming that an optimizer cannot roleplay (or is participating in a playstyle that isn't supportive of roleplaying) because he is an optimizer, or vice versa, is committing the Stormwind Fallacy.
    How does this impact "builds"? Simple.


    In one extreme (say, Pun-Pun), they are thought experiments. Optimization tests that are not intended to see actual gameplay. Because they do not see gameplay, they do not commit the fallacy.


    In the other extreme, you get the drama queens. They could care less about the rules, and are, essentially, playing free-form RP. Because the game is not necessary to this particular character, it doesn't fall into the fallacy.


    By playing D&D, you opt in to an agreement of sorts -- the rules describe the world you live in, including yourself. To get the most out of those rules, in the same way you would get the most out of yourself, you must optimize in some respect (and don't look at me funny; you do it already, you just don't like to admit it. You don't need multiclassing or splatbooks to optimize). However, because it is a role-playing game, you also agree to play a role. This is dependent completely on you, and is independent of the rules.


    And no, this isn't dependent on edition, or even what roleplaying game you're doing. If you are playing a roleplaying game with any form of rules or regulation, this fallacy can apply. The only difference is the nature of the optimization (based on the rules of that game; Tri-Stat optimizes differently than d20) or the flavor of the roleplay (based on the setting; Exalted feels different from Cthulu).


    Conclusion: D&D, like it or not, has elements of both optimization AND roleplay in it. Any game that involves rules has optimization, and any role-playing game has roleplay. These are inherent to the game.
    They go hand-in-hand in this sort of game. Deal with it. And in the name of all that is good and holy, stop committing the Stormwind Fallacy in the meantime.



    If I use my knowledge of the rules to make the best representation ("mapping" in my terminology) of a character within the system we'll be using. Not the most powerful build, not necessarily the most efficient build, but the most robust and truthful representation of that character that I can achieve, because my intent is to roleplay that character. And in doing so, I have OPTIMIZED -- I have created the most optimal build I can for the goal of roleplaying that character.


    One could even build the most powerful possible character for the system and "resources" made available by the GM... and then roleplay the hell out of that character, roleplay it like a boss, roleplay like no one has ever roleplayed before.
    It is one thing to suspend your disbelief. It is another thing entirely to hang it by the neck until dead.

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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by Darth Ultron View Post
    Looks good enough, Optimization = Anti Role Playing.
    You have yet to demonstrate why this is so. What about engagement with the mechanics is antithetical to role playing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Darth Ultron View Post
    See your going beyond just optimization to Exportation: How can I exploit the rules of the game to get what I want to Roll Play.
    Why is choosing options that are mechanically effective representations of your envisioned character's attributes - I'm going to assume you meant to type - exploitation?

    For example: If I envision my fighter as a fearless knight in shining armor and master at arms, is it "roll play" to take a few levels of paladin so that my character can have a few appropriate abilities that will make them fit my concept? What if the campaign turns out to be focused on fighting undead, and I take levels in an anti-undead class to represent becoming good at that? These are both low-end optimization decisions, in that they are mechanical choices that make my character good at certain things, but does that make them intrinsically inappropriate?

    And this is without even getting into the fact that many games are structured so that a failure to keep up mechanically precludes meaningful participation. Say I want to play a monk in 3rd edition D&D: by default, I can look forward to a pretty miserable experience in which I get regularly trounced by CR-appropriate threats. Combats in 3E are lengthy, so in this situation I want to be able to contribute so that the rest of the table doesn't hate seeing my turn come up, if nothing else. Optimization, however, can ease that burden and help me tune a character who keeps up with the rest of the party without outshining them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Darth Ultron View Post
    Except you forget the other parts about Optimzers:

    1.They want to show off and stroke their egos and awe an audience
    2.They want to ruin the fun and the game for others.

    So they won't just sit home. They will lie and sneak into a game and do their best to ruin it and get a good laugh.
    What you've just described is a jerk, not an optimizer. There are absolutely people who are both, but if your entire claim is that being engaged with the mechanics of games is equivalent to being a game-killing, antisocial narcissist, then ... you're wrong. Based on your earlier description of someone flagrantly cheating as "optimization," I'm not even convinced you've ever actually seen real optimization. Knowledge of game mechanics is no more equivalent to awfulness than is, say, skill at improv (if anything, it's less of one, since improv is a cult :P).

    Frankly, I've heard plenty of stories about things going the opposite way, too: toxic players who were deliberately ineffective to the point of disruptiveness, or toxic groups who go out of their way to ignore the rules so as to make even modestly effective decisions into shameful "power gaming." An acquaintance of mine once described an example of the latter a group he joined with the intention of playing a support wizard, using spells like darkness to help the party's fighter and ranger shine - he specifically wanted to avoid taking the spotlight. The DM proceeded to ban the spell for being overpowered, because apparently things in the sphere of darkness it summons are invulnerable. I'll give you a hint: they aren't, and such an interpretation was made up whole cloth. Essentially, the DM changed the rules to make what he was doing overpowered, for the sole purpose of banning it for being overpowered. As my acquaintance characterized it, what the group seemed to really resent was that he wanted to use the options made available in the game, and they made his experience unfun for trying.

    My point here is that jerks are jerks, and that you will find them among role-players of all stripes. Optimization is a skill set, not an indicator of character.
    Last edited by gkathellar; 2017-12-28 at 07:59 PM.

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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by gkathellar View Post
    Frankly, I've heard plenty of stories about things going the opposite way, too: toxic players who were deliberately ineffective to the point of disruptiveness, or toxic groups who go out of their way to ignore the rules so as to make even modestly effective decisions into shameful "power gaming." An acquaintance of mine once described an example of the latter a group he joined with the intention of playing a support wizard, using spells like darkness to help the party's fighter and ranger shine - he specifically wanted to avoid taking the spotlight. The DM proceeded to ban the spell for being overpowered, because apparently things in the sphere of darkness it summons are invulnerable. I'll give you a hint: they aren't, and such an interpretation was made up whole cloth. Essentially, the DM changed the rules to make what he was doing overpowered, for the sole purpose of banning it for being overpowered. As my acquaintance characterized it, what the group seemed to really resent was that he wanted to use the options made available in the game, and they made his experience unfun for trying.

    My point here is that jerks are jerks, and that you will find them among role-players of all stripes. Optimization is a skill set, not an indicator of character.
    Back in the day, we had one of those players. Ugh. Every character he built appeared to be a deliberate series of the most ineffective choices possible, and he reacted to any suggestion of things he could tweak, or things his character could learn as part of growing into the lives they were finding themselves in, with comments like "that seems kinda power-gamey" or "that really doesn't fit the concept"... some of those characters were useless at EVERYTHING, and he refused to change that because the concept was something like "in over his head".
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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    See, people keep trodding out that stormwind fallacy, but it doesn't make me dislike optimizers any less.

    Yes I know they are unrelated. But at the same time, I think of nonsense that people consider an "optimized game" and just automatically reject it, because it gives me absolutely nothing what I want. mechanics get in my way more often than they help. I'm jumping through meaningless hoops just to get to a character I have in my head that I could get to in much simpler ways. Thats crazy.

    I mean not once have I ever looked at an optimized wizard and thought of a character concept I'd want to play using it. Mostly because its just effectiveness, which is just distasteful to me, while I don't need anyones help to make my characters. all those optimization guides? I've looked at them, and they're just boring and makes me think "this tells me nothing of how to build any character I'm interested in."

    Mostly because I look at the fluff first, foremost and most important. crunch is that distant annoying second. optimizing is for people who actually LIKE the mechanics thing, so they idealize it and speak glowingly of it. I don't.
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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Raziere View Post
    See, people keep trodding out that stormwind fallacy, but it doesn't make me dislike optimizers any less.

    Yes I know they are unrelated. But at the same time, I think of nonsense that people consider an "optimized game" and just automatically reject it, because it gives me absolutely nothing what I want. mechanics get in my way more often than they help. I'm jumping through meaningless hoops just to get to a character I have in my head that I could get to in much simpler ways. Thats crazy.

    I mean not once have I ever looked at an optimized wizard and thought of a character concept I'd want to play using it. Mostly because its just effectiveness, which is just distasteful to me, while I don't need anyones help to make my characters. all those optimization guides? I've looked at them, and they're just boring and makes me think "this tells me nothing of how to build any character I'm interested in."

    Mostly because I look at the fluff first, foremost and most important. crunch is that distant annoying second. optimizing is for people who actually LIKE the mechanics thing, so they idealize it and speak glowingly of it. I don't.
    Have you tried not playing a game with mechanics? That way, you can say your character is the greatest swordsman ever and you don't need the mechanics to support that because there are no mechanics.

    To me, at least, it breaks immersion when someone's "Best swordsman who ever lived" can't hit the broad side of a barn. And if you dislike me because I like to have my character be able to do my character's job, then well whatever that's okay.

    You still haven't explained your previous posts, incidentally.
    Last edited by Jormengand; 2017-12-28 at 08:38 PM.
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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by Max_Killjoy View Post
    Indeed, it's so not true that there's even a name for it...

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    If I use my knowledge of the rules to make the best representation ("mapping" in my terminology) of a character within the system we'll be using. Not the most powerful build, not necessarily the most efficient build, but the most robust and truthful representation of that character that I can achieve, because my intent is to roleplay that character. And in doing so, I have OPTIMIZED -- I have created the most optimal build I can for the goal of roleplaying that character.


    One could even build the most powerful possible character for the system and "resources" made available by the GM... and then roleplay the hell out of that character, roleplay it like a boss, roleplay like no one has ever roleplayed before.

    There is also the question if optimization is anti roleplaying then what about pregens?. If the greatest optimizer in the world makes a character and hands it to the greatest roleplayer in the world who plays the character, then what will happen? Will the universe implode?

  20. - Top - End - #50
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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    I was wondering if this would crop up here...
    In any case the need to optimise, or lack there, of is dependent on the game played and how the game master runs it.
    I have been in shadowrun games were only the most bleedingly tweaked out and overamped characters can cut it, and in dnd games were what one decided to try with the latest magical doohickey was far more important than if you were a level 12 knight or level 1 commoner. I think I can guess from the post as to who would prefer which game.
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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by RazorChain View Post
    And Yes I know, free forming is liberating for me as a GM as well. Then I'm fully in the right to negate my players agency and steer the game into the direction I want to and adjucate in a way that serves the narrative best.


    Let me tell you a true story about a power gamer that took part in a GM-less free forming session with me. First he said that his character was very strong, in fact his character was the stronges man in the village. This village was known for having the strongest men in the region, in fact the village held a strong man competition that he had won where all the strongest men from the country had taken part. In fact the some of the gods were jelous of his strenght as his character was stronger than them.

    Now the adventures we were trying to tell weren't about PC's with godly strength, it just didn't fit in. But the player realizing that there was no GM to keep him in check just made his character stronger and stronger until the group told him that his character didn't fit in. So even in freeform you can try to make the character as strong/powerful as you can but like in all other system or systemless games the GM is in his right to veto your character.

    I as a GM will always look to how a character will contribute to the party and adventures we are planning for. If I feel the character won't fit in or is mechanically unbalanced I will work with the player to fix the character or just plain veto him. If somebody ever again comes up with a character that is really a god slumming with some adventurers then NO
    Not sure what you're getting at, but it seems to me you're doing freeform wrong. A player can be absolutely as strong as he desires, as long as it's understood that it's an abstraction, and the GM decides the limits of that abstraction.

    In essence:
    Player: Am I strong enough to lift that rock.
    GM: No.

    End of story.

    Powerplay is literally impossible in freeform.

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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Raziere View Post
    Mostly because I look at the fluff first, foremost and most important. crunch is that distant annoying second. optimizing is for people who actually LIKE the mechanics thing, so they idealize it and speak glowingly of it. I don't.
    I was going to ask why you play D&D, but judging by your posting history I'm not sure you do. Do you? Do you have a lot of house rules? Do you make it work? I hope you do, because D&D is just so crunchy.

    I'm starting to dread seeing Darth Ultron appear in a thread. As far as I can tell, he thinks that Optimizers can be
    A. entitled crybabies that literally break the game with homebrewed rules that make their characters mechanically superior.
    B. raging gasbags that will flip out if their character doesn't succeed on every die role. This also makes him afraid of players having agency, as agency = looking for auto success.

    It's like hearing your friend saying they don't like doctors, then you ask why and they think that all surgical procedures are done without painkillers, anaesthetic or recovery time.

    On the plus side, watching Jormengand flip out at people is refreshing.
    Last edited by Shark Uppercut; 2017-12-29 at 03:44 AM.
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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shark Uppercut View Post
    On the plus side, watching Jormengand flip out at people is refreshing.
    I aim to please.

    I also have a very feedback-dependent mood, which can make me irrationally angry (or very happy, on the rare occasion I get compliments), but people complaining at me for saying stuff I never did doesn't help.
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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shark Uppercut View Post
    I was going to ask why you play D&D, but judging by your posting history I'm not sure you do. Do you? Do you have a lot of house rules? Do you make it work? I hope you do, because D&D is just so crunchy.
    I'm in a pathfinder Eberron game as an artificer on this forum. so technically yes I do.
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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shark Uppercut View Post
    I was going to ask why you play D&D, but judging by your posting history I'm not sure you do. Do you? Do you have a lot of house rules? Do you make it work? I hope you do, because D&D is just so crunchy.

    I'm starting to dread seeing Darth Ultron appear in a thread. As far as I can tell, he thinks that Optimizers can be
    A. entitled crybabies that literally break the game with homebrewed rules that make their characters mechanically superior.
    B. raging gasbags that will flip out if their character doesn't succeed on every die role. This also makes him afraid of players having agency, as agency = looking for auto success.

    It's like hearing your friend saying they don't like doctors, then you ask why and they think that all surgical procedures are done without painkillers, anaesthetic or recovery time.

    On the plus side, watching Jormengand flip out at people is refreshing.
    Read the whole thread DU is already here, lured by the faintest whiff of the Jerk Player Optimizer and Jay R has been trying to keep the thread on topic...which on these forums is almost impossible

  26. - Top - End - #56
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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    I try to optimize for table fun.

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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jormengand View Post
    You keep on saying this and then it keeps on not being true.
    It's very true, there are a couple of exceptions, but not many.

    Quote Originally Posted by gkathellar View Post
    You have yet to demonstrate why this is so. What about engagement with the mechanics is antithetical to role playing?
    Because it is all the optimizer does: play the numbers game. Playing the numbers game IS Roll Playing. The player is obsessed with getting that ''+1 more'', and if they are doing that....they are not role playing.


    Quote Originally Posted by gkathellar View Post
    Why is choosing options that are mechanically effective representations of your envisioned character's attributes - I'm going to assume you meant to type - exploitation?
    They are not and that is what normal gamers do. BUT not what optimizers do.

    Quote Originally Posted by gkathellar View Post
    For example: If I envision my fighter as a fearless knight in shining armor and master at arms, is it "roll play" to take a few levels of paladin so that my character can have a few appropriate abilities that will make them fit my concept? What if the campaign turns out to be focused on fighting undead, and I take levels in an anti-undead class to represent becoming good at that? These are both low-end optimization decisions, in that they are mechanical choices that make my character good at certain things, but does that make them intrinsically inappropriate?
    The easy way to tell a normal player from an optimizer is that the role player can accept weakness, less power and do things that make sense. Like say two players wanted to have a 5th level character that was a merchant wizard. The normal player would take a couple levels of the merchant class(there are some out there) to give the character a couple merchant like abilities and take a couple levels in wizard. The optimizer would never, ever take a lame non-combat class like merchant and would not want to waste levels on it...they want to go all wizard levels so they can get early entry into that one cool prestige class or whatever. So you'd have one player that is a merchant 2/wizard 3, ready to role play a merchant wizard and one player that is wizard 5, ready to roll play some combat!

    Quote Originally Posted by gkathellar View Post
    And this is without even getting into the fact that many games are structured so that a failure to keep up mechanically precludes meaningful participation. Say I want to play a monk in 3rd edition D&D: by default, I can look forward to a pretty miserable experience in which I get regularly trounced by CR-appropriate threats. Combats in 3E are lengthy, so in this situation I want to be able to contribute so that the rest of the table doesn't hate seeing my turn come up, if nothing else. Optimization, however, can ease that burden and help me tune a character who keeps up with the rest of the party without outshining them.
    Only optimizers think monks suck.

    Quote Originally Posted by gkathellar View Post
    My point here is that jerks are jerks, and that you will find them among role-players of all stripes. Optimization is a skill set, not an indicator of character.
    My point is that not all jerks are optimizers, but all optimizers except a few are jerks.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shark Uppercut View Post
    I

    I'm starting to dread seeing Darth Ultron appear in a thread. As far as I can tell, he thinks that Optimizers can be
    A. entitled crybabies that literally break the game with homebrewed rules that make their characters mechanically superior.
    B. raging gasbags that will flip out if their character doesn't succeed on every die role. This also makes him afraid of players having agency, as agency = looking for auto success.
    I approve this above post.

  28. - Top - End - #58
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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Good optimizer does not equal bad role-player, and bad optimizer does not equal good role-player.

    I have been criticised both for having "sub-optimal" PC's and as being bad at role-playing multiple times.

    I am a "roll-player" not "role-player" and I am also a lousy "optimizer".

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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by Darth Ultron View Post
    It's very true, there are a couple of exceptions, but not many.
    There are more examples that break the rule than that follow it.

    Because it is all the optimizer does: play the numbers game. Playing the numbers game IS Roll Playing. The player is obsessed with getting that ''+1 more'', and if they are doing that....they are not role playing.
    You keep saying that and it keeps not being true.

    They are not and that is what normal gamers do. BUT not what optimizers do.
    That's the exact opposite of true - that is what optimisers do and not what optimisers do.

    The easy way to tell a normal player from an optimizer is that the role player can accept weakness, less power and do things that make sense. Like say two players wanted to have a 5th level character that was a merchant wizard. The normal player would take a couple levels of the merchant class(there are some out there) to give the character a couple merchant like abilities and take a couple levels in wizard. The optimizer would never, ever take a lame non-combat class like merchant and would not want to waste levels on it...they want to go all wizard levels so they can get early entry into that one cool prestige class or whatever. So you'd have one player that is a merchant 2/wizard 3, ready to role play a merchant wizard and one player that is wizard 5, ready to roll play some combat!
    You are aware that just like Miko doesn't have any samurai levels, you are allowed to be a merchant without having any access to the "Merchant class"? Plus, the optimiser is going to use those extra levels to get faster access to spells which help with mercantile tasks.

    Only optimizers think monks suck.
    I mean, monks are pretty objectively examples of poor game design...

    My point is that not all jerks are optimizers, but all optimizers except a few are jerks.
    You keep saying that and it keeps on not being true.

    I approve this above post.
    I think that's part of your problem, DU. You're enjoying the fact that everyone justifiably is getting ticked off at the fact that you keep showing up and saying stupid crap while the rest of us are trying to have a meaningful discussion.
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    Default Re: What are you optimizing in character design?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jormengand View Post
    I think that's part of your problem, DU. You're enjoying the fact that everyone justifiably is getting ticked off at the fact that you keep showing up and saying stupid crap while the rest of us are trying to have a meaningful discussion.
    After you see enough of his posts, you start to realize he's exactly the sort of person he spends at least half of every post complaining about -- that player he keeps railing about his him.

    The ignore function was made for people like him.
    Last edited by Max_Killjoy; 2017-12-29 at 10:28 AM.
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