• The Infractions Forum is available for public view. Please note that if you have been suspended you will need to open a private/incognito browser window to view it.

What is the least playable RPG?

Jaydee

Off on an adventure
Validated User
The question I'd ask myself is : do all those characters have senses and brains quick enough to get benefits from those possible actions ?
This is DC comics so thanks to the speed force, yes.

I really wanted to like this game when it came out but problems like this and the ridiculously low powered default for the PCs made it unplayable for me. I still have a load of the cool specialist dice that I’d love to find a use for one day.
 

Catharsis Cat

Live Action Anime Girl
Validated User
BESM 1e was unplayable when I tried running it (I was using. It seems simple enough, but when you actually try to play, the whiff factor is insane. I had to stop actually using the rules mid game because the probabilities were too messed up. Attack and defense rolls are pass/fail instead of opposed, and the mechanic is roll under with a hard ceiling. At low levels, you have a low chance of suceeding your attack rolls to you miss. At high levels your oponnent has a low chance of failing their defense rolls, so you miss. It scales so there is that high whiff factor at all power levels.

There are plenty of other issues with the game too, but the whiff factor is what made it unplayable.

This appears to apply to 2e as well, though 3e changed the dice mechanic, so I am unsure if they fixed that issue.
 

Rupert

Active member
Validated User
BESM 1e was unplayable when I tried running it (I was using. It seems simple enough, but when you actually try to play, the whiff factor is insane. I had to stop actually using the rules mid game because the probabilities were too messed up. Attack and defense rolls are pass/fail instead of opposed, and the mechanic is roll under with a hard ceiling. At low levels, you have a low chance of suceeding your attack rolls to you miss. At high levels your oponnent has a low chance of failing their defense rolls, so you miss. It scales so there is that high whiff factor at all power levels.

There are plenty of other issues with the game too, but the whiff factor is what made it unplayable.
Runequest has tended to have a high whiff factor, for the same reason, yet isn't generally considered 'unplayable'. The degree of 'shiff' people find acceptable varies, and not everyone considers 'I hit, they parried' as a failure.
 

smilingbandit2

Darkness is my Ally.
RPGnet Member
Validated User
This is DC comics so thanks to the speed force, yes.

I really wanted to like this game when it came out but problems like this and the ridiculously low powered default for the PCs made it unplayable for me. I still have a load of the cool specialist dice that I’d love to find a use for one day.
Is there a stated reason why players are meant to play such low powered characters?
 

Angel of the Dawn

Registered User
Validated User
Is there a stated reason why players are meant to play such low powered characters?
I presume to make the established characters look awesome. Because the game is selling using the DC brand, and DC probably insisted starting characters not outshine their signature characters. Or maybe that was the game designers' own philosophy. Plus you want to give characters plenty of room to grow, instead of starting them out at the top of their game.

Because you know what would happen otherwise, right? People would roll up a group and immediately make a beeline to Robin and kick his ass. And Batman's. And Superman's, while they're at it.

Of course, this should be easily enough rectified by increasing the number of build points for starting characters, right?
 

DarkMoc

Registered User
Validated User
Is there a stated reason why players are meant to play such low powered characters?
They're supposed to be just starting out (think early Spoiler or when the Superboy clone was first awakened). A short adventure of two or three scenes should award up to 16 Character Points, and generally be at least 10 CP (achieving the goal is 2 CP; good group interaction/teamwork is 6-8 CP; good individual RP is 2-4 CP; being entertaining is 1-2 CP). Advancing a skill costs 3 times its existing die code. Improving a power costs 3 times its Base Cost, which ranges from 5 for things like Elasticity or X-Ray Vision to 30 for Reality Manipulation. Most starting characters can add a die or two to skills or a die to a lesser power every session or add a die to a more significant power every few sessions.

A character like Robin, with no powers and lots of skills, can get to decent die levels relatively quickly. And a lot of decent powers are relatively cheap - crossing comics universes to use Wolverine as an example because everyone knows Wolverine, his powers would be Natural Weapons (5), Supersenses (5), and Healing [Self Only] (13), probably with Superattribute: Physique (10) to make him tougher. He could advance Natural Weapons or Supersenses every session or two, Super Physique every two or three sessions, or Healing every three sessions.
 

Kremlin KOA

Sarcastic Cripple
Validated User
Is there a stated reason why players are meant to play such low powered characters?
There was a game design philosophy at the time that suggested that Licenced universe game Pcs should not be able to compete with the Canon protagonists
Star Wars D6 was the Ur Example.
 

WistfulD

Registered User
Validated User
There was a game design philosophy at the time that suggested that Licenced universe game Pcs should not be able to compete with the Canon protagonists
Star Wars D6 was the Ur Example.
Ah yes, I remember being rather perturbed that Mon Mothma needed to have an insanely high speederbike piloting skill. :p
 

Angel of the Dawn

Registered User
Validated User
There was a game design philosophy at the time that suggested that Licenced universe game Pcs should not be able to compete with the Canon protagonists
Star Wars D6 was the Ur Example.
Maybe that explains Stormtroopers. They're actually optimized characters straight out of chargen, but they can't reliably do anything, like shoot their opponents, resist mind control, or pilot bikes.
 
Top Bottom