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Abstract Musings

Assorted ideas about games.

  1. Alignment Heresy and A Reformation: Shades of Neutrality

    by , 04-07-2012 at 07:58 AM (Inside lives a goblin that feeds on indecision.)
    In Moorcock's writing the Cosmic Balance is a force unto itself, albeit less forceful than Chaos or Law. Agents of the Balance battle Chaos's attempts to dominate worlds. (Law, apparently, is too lawful to violate the Balance, which doesn't ring true to me.) AD&D had a similar concept in True Neutral, a notably tenet of Druids. Unlike regular neutrals, who for the most part don't care about things that don't affect them, True Neutrals are neutrality extremists, intent on correcting any tilt ...

    Updated 04-29-2012 at 09:13 PM by fmitchell

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  2. Alignment Heresy and A Reformation: Pruning the Nine Alignments

    by , 04-07-2012 at 07:53 AM (Inside lives a goblin that feeds on indecision.)
    D&D 4th Edition assumes that the most important distinctions are between Good and Evil, for some definition of Good and Evil. What if we consider Law and Chaos as primary? Three of our alignments then become Lawful, Unaligned, and Chaos.

    Lawful Good and Chaotic Evil could round out the set ... but really, people follow the Law always think of themselves as doing so for the Greater Good, and there's little difference between capricious and malevolent. Let's try something interesting. ...

    Updated 04-29-2012 at 09:14 PM by fmitchell

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  3. Alignment Heresy and A Reformation: Introduction

    by , 04-07-2012 at 07:48 AM (Inside lives a goblin that feeds on indecision.)
    D&D's various alignment systems provoke a lot of discussion, partly because they have multiple interpretations and multiple purposes. To quickly review changes across editions:

    Original D&D and Basic D&D had only three alignments: Law, Neutrality, and Chaos. (One version of Basic, I forget which, added "Good" and "Evil". Not Lawful Good or Chaotic Good, just "Good".) Essentially it represented which "side" a character was on ...

    Updated 04-29-2012 at 09:14 PM by fmitchell

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  4. Uncounted Worlds, part 3: Other Modes of Travel

    by , 10-21-2011 at 02:53 AM (Inside lives a goblin that feeds on indecision.)
    Many worlds believe theirs is the only timeline. Even "time travelers" believe in only one real timeline; the others cease to exist when the past changes. Previous timelines become inaccessible through linear time travel, so nothing in their science disproves their theory.

    Sufficiently advanced travelers have means beyond these simple "time machines". World Jumpers can identify a parallel time line in infinite-dimensional space and "jump" to it directly. ...

    Updated 04-29-2012 at 09:16 PM by fmitchell

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  5. Uncounted Worlds, part 2.1 (Consequences of Time Travel)

    by , 09-28-2011 at 06:56 PM (Inside lives a goblin that feeds on indecision.)
    Time travel, as described, moves a traveler back and forth along timelines. From the perspective of a naive time traveler, there's only one timeline that changes every time the traveler changes the "past".

    Some other consequences of this model:

    • Travel to the absolute past is impossible. Every trip backwards forks a new timeline; the original past still exists.
    • The traveler enters a world that started identically to a particular moment, but will
    ...

    Updated 04-29-2012 at 09:16 PM by fmitchell

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