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Author Topic: Omnificent Role-playing System ruleset free to download  (Read 2943 times)
dreamborn
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« Reply #15 on: March 03, 2011, 07:04:32 AM »

Quote
Steve Cooper writes,[player] I'll try to pick up whatever I can from the experienced sailors on the journey.

  [gm] that sounds reasonable. You make friends with the first mate, Stubb. He explains how the rigging works and lets you know how to avoid being hurt.You get used to the constantly-rolling decks and overcome your initial seasickness.

  [player] Do I get anything on my character sheet?

  [gm] write down 'apprentice sailor'

Dreamborn responds, ORS would do this automatically, remember ORS requires computer assistance, time required 0.  With that said depending on how much time the player devotes to learning about sailing, (number of hours in a day), ORS continously updates the characters skill, so 2 days into the sea journey which should last 14 days (1 minute into your playing that night) his character skill has been updating continously.  An encounter/situation happens that he needs to use his sailing skills, ORS resolves it automatically and gives him the benefit.  If you as a GM only update his skill 1/game he cannot use anything his character has learned, or you as a GM must think about it and wing it.  It saves you time.  It saves the game time because the player doesn't need to jump out of character and ask you if he can do anything.  Now as an ORS game designer he may not have learned much in 2 days but it is quantifiable in my system at a very fine level of resolution. Which begs the question what is an Apprentice sailor?  In the medieval period many apprentices took years.  So is he a beginning apprentice 2nd year apprentice, 5th year?  Your level of granularity is very coarse.

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Steve Cooper writes, “I'm starting to realise what it is that's been bugging me about the system. What you seem to be doing is building a very fine-grained mathematical model ; the z-scores, action templates, and event modelling are a way to build a simulation. However, a simulation is not a game”

Exactly ORS is not a adventure it is a set of rules and aides to enhance game play.  ORS does not eliminate the GM or the creative process it just makes it easier.  ORS is designed in such a way that it does not inhibit the creative choices of the players or the GM.  It just makes it more realistic, consistent, intuitive and speeds up game play.

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Steve Cooper writes, “Now, the way I understand ORS, it's not going to be easy for a GM to use it to run a game of his own design. If I decide to write a magic system, I think I'm going to have to also write it as a computer program. And that limits the imagination of my players to algorithmic, systematic, formal thinking, which isn't something I want to see in my magic system.”

No you misunderstand  ORS is very easy for the GM to use and run a game of his design.  That is one of the design goals.  ORS is a complete system, the magic system is available to look at.  You have the ability (without programming) to modify the magic system to fit your gaming style.  Now if you want to have games that are not logical, intuitive or consistent then ORS is not for you.  If you want your magic to work one way in the first hour of the game and a different way in the second hour of the game then ORS is not for you.  The GM and the players don’t need to think or do anything in an algorithmic or systemic way.  The just need to think and play intuitively, which IMO most players do anyway.  For example, every player basis what he does off his experiences in real life + plus whatever he/she has learned within your game world.  At the beginning, he ONLY can base his actions off his experiences in life (this includes movies, books etc).

I am not eliminating the GM, or the story telling or the roleplaying in any way.  In my ideal game people are still sitting around a table and talking face2face.  The GM is still telling a story.  I go into this in the ORS GM’s Guide.

Thanks for spending the time to express your concerns
Kent Krumvieda
www.dreamborn.com
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dreamborn
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« Reply #16 on: March 03, 2011, 07:28:12 AM »


Quote
Ari Black writes, “I'm working on an RPG system with a similar goal to yours; essentially, one system to rule them all. I'm also using a skill based system with improvement through use. My approach was different from yours, as I wanted to make the system as basic as possible, with as few rules as possible, so that it was more flexible for different types of games. After completing most of the ground work, I started thinking about how I would play the current game I'm running with the new system that I'd created. “

Dreamborn responds, “GREAT!  Congrats.  I hope it meets your expectations, at least now you can only blame yourself  :^)

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Ari Black writes, “I saw that I would have to rework the mechanic of magic to use the system I had created. This was fine with me, because I expected that GMs would have to add personalizations here and there to make their specific game work. But I realized that, as long as I was creating a set of formal rules, no matter how abstract, I was forcing my tastes in game play and mechanics on the people who would be using the system.”

Dreamborn responds, “You are absolutely right.  Every game out there has the game designers’ tastes and desires.  In ORS, my stated goal was increased realism and playability.  What you see on my sight is a result of my core team’s dream of OUR ideal roleplaying system.  It is open to ALL who want to influence the design.  It is a community project and has been since 2006.  If ANYONE is interested they can contribute by telling me how I did something wrong AND telling me how to do it better within my stated goals.  Notice the AND… 

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Ari Black write, "This is not a bad thing, every RPG system does it. Even if a group was doing pure free-form RPG, they would likely develop a set of house rules to adjudicate even if it was just a basic social contract among the players. A game design friend of mine put it a different way, a way I didn't like at first but now think is probably true for the most part, "People need rules so they know what to break. "

Dreamborn responds, “I agree to a point.  In ORS the GM has the capability to change the rules to suite his and his players individual styles.  The GM even has the ability to insert an outcome for an action, although I don’t do this ORS allows this.  But for the players they have the comfort of knowing the rules and the rule adjudication are consistent.”

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Air Black writes, “You can't make a system that will work for all of the people all of the time. To do so, it would have to be all of the systems and none of them all at once. The best you can hope for is to make a system that's approachable; complex enough to allow for variability and challenge but simple enough for the learning curve and in-game use to not be restrictive. But, at best, it will only appeal to some of the people some of the time.”

Correct!  ORS was designed for those who want more realism and playability.  It enforces consistent game play that is intuitive.  That may not be for everyone, in fact it isn’t.  Some GM’s like the ability to be GOD and hide behind their screen.  Some GM’s want the ability to change any and every rule when and where ever they want.  Some players and GMs never want their characters to die, even if they do something stupid.  If this is the style of play the GM and players want then great!  They can and do have lots of fun.  ORS wasn’t written for this style of gameplay.  NOTE—I AM NOT ATTACK ANYONE OR ANY STLE OF GAME PLAY!!!!

Kent Krumvieda
www.dreamborn.com
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Ari Black
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Posts: 21


« Reply #17 on: March 03, 2011, 08:12:01 AM »

Dreamborn responds, ORS would do this automatically, remember ORS requires computer assistance, time required 0.  With that said depending on how much time the player devotes to learning about sailing, (number of hours in a day), ORS continously updates the characters skill, so 2 days into the sea journey which should last 14 days (1 minute into your playing that night) his character skill has been updating continously.

I'm a little confused. ORS is an RPG system that requires a computer to play? Does this mean that you have created an algorithm for everything and it's up to the GM, or a third party, to implement your algorithm in a piece of software?

If I'm mistaken, how would a GM manually contend with the fine resolution tracking that ORS seems to require?
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dreamborn
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« Reply #18 on: March 03, 2011, 08:57:43 AM »

Quote
Ari Black writes, “I'm a little confused. ORS is an RPG system that requires a computer to play? Does this mean that you have created an algorithm for everything and it's up to the GM, or a third party, to implement your algorithm in a piece of software?

If I'm mistaken, how would a GM manually contend with the fine resolution tracking that ORS seems to require?”

Yes ORS is an RPG system that requires a computer to play.  Yes the design tries to model life, encounters, magic and behavior in a probabilistic way.  Yes the design is rough draft, anyone can influence the game at this point.  Four (4) detailed books are available for free to download <www.dreamborn.com>.  The ORS community is now looking forward to implementing this monster.  Currently the software is implemented in Mathworks MATLAB environment <www.mathworks.com>, and a few things in Mathematica < www.wolfram.com/mathematica>.  If it happens the port will be to JAVA for multiplatform/multi-OS support.  It is or plan (see manuals) to also support smartphones, pocket PCs, etc.

The GM doesn’t’ manually contend with the fine resolution tracking, it is automated.  Feel free to look at the GM’s guide and the other manuals.

Kent Krumvieda
ORS – The Omnificent Roleplaying System
www.dreamborn.com
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SteveCooper
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Posts: 19


« Reply #19 on: March 03, 2011, 09:08:46 AM »

"Dreamborn responds, ORS would do this automatically, remember ORS requires computer assistance, time required 0."

No, I still don't see how that works. The computer can only increment the player's sailing skill when it knows certain facts;

  - The player is on a ship.
  - Time on a ship slowly increases Sailing.
  - On the ship is a Salty Old Sea Dog.
  - A Salty Old Sea Dog is an +2z teacher of the Sailing skill.
  - The player and the Salty Old Sea Dog talk together for 1 hour every day.
  - The player spends 14 consecutive days on the ship.

Now, you need to tell the computer this in order for the teaching process to run in zero time. I might imagine using a formal language, or a UI, to add these features to the computer's internal representation of the gameworld. Some work I can pre-empt and do before a session, some must be done inside a session.

To provide a concrete example; there's a very nice language for designing gameworlds for interactive fiction (text adventures) called Inform. It's a lovely way to describe a gameworld to a computer. ORS is going to need something similar because I must convey my imagination into an executable form within the computer.

Let's imagine ORS doesn't have the concept of ships. I'll need to add in the concept of ships and sailors, and this particular ship and the sailor, Stubb. In Inform, it would probably take me 30 minutes or so to code, by adding rules like 'if the character is on a ship, and the character is awake, apply an environmental learning bonus of +0.01z/hr for the Sailing skill.'

So -- talk me through how, explicitly, I would go about adding the six facts above to my ORS system's understanding of my gameworld. What steps to I take?

"If you as a GM only update his skill 1/game he cannot use anything his character has learned, or you as a GM must think about it and wing it."

Again, this is a non-problem. If, after a week, there is a pirate attack, then I can say "write 'familiar with sailing' on your character sheet" and we're complete.

"Which begs the question what is an Apprentice sailor? [...] Your level of granularity is very coarse."

In the system I'm banging together, Apprentice is rank 5 out of 10, 1 being Sickly, and 10 being Mythic. 'Familiar' is rank 4. Tests are also difficulty-rated on the 1-10 scale, and are resolved with a single 2d6 roll.

It certainly is coarse, because I don't need more fine distinctions. Getting the broad strokes right is extremely important -- a professional soldier should rarely be beaten by an unarmed peasant -- but finer distinctions are harder to justify. For two roughly equal characters, 50-50 is good enough for play to continue.

"ORS is designed in such a way that it does not inhibit the creative choices of the players or the GM. It just makes it more realistic, consistent, intuitive and speeds up game play. [...] ORS is very easy for the GM to use and run a game of his design.  That is one of the design goals.  ORS is a complete system, the magic system is available to look at."

Again, I'll need specifics. If I decided to use ORS as the generic part of my system, and then I decided to add my own specifics, what do I have to do?

Can you take me through two examples; one straightforward, one harder.

First example; I want to run a game where there are things called soul-stones. If you are carrying a soul-stone, it makes you elated, and sharper mentally, but it slowly destroys your sense of self. How would I go about putting that into the system such that players could have a soul-stone in their inventory, and the effects get applied automatically?

Second example; I want to run a game where players cast spells by composing poems. The more complex the poem, the more powerful the effect. Limericks can do petty magic, and twelve-book epic poems can destroy cities. Take me through the steps I'd need to perform to incorporate that magic system.
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dreamborn
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« Reply #20 on: March 03, 2011, 01:40:30 PM »

Quote
Steve writes, “No, I still don't see how that works. The computer can only increment the player's sailing skill when it knows certain facts;

  - The player is on a ship.
  - Time on a ship slowly increases Sailing.
  - On the ship is a Salty Old Sea Dog.
  - A Salty Old Sea Dog is an +2z teacher of the Sailing skill.
  - The player and the Salty Old Sea Dog talk together for 1 hour every day.
  - The player spends 14 consecutive days on the ship.”
Correct, the GM just like in any other game will prepare an adventure ahead of time, the adventure has many of those details.  On game day, the players start playing.  They get on ship, using main screen (page 21 & 25) {{pages are GM guide}, The player then interacts with Salty sea dog (page 29).  Player then uses sailing skill (p25).  Each player would be simultaneously doing their things, (training, sleeping, reading, fishing, etc).  Depending on how much the players deviate from the GMs adventure the GM either does next to nothing or has to interact with the program.  The GM is of course playing the role of the salty old seadog and telling a story.  In my games we actually play this out.  In your example you seem to blow this off (In which case your game would be faster).  Then the even driven sequencer (p 25) cycles through time and updates the characters based upon what they are doing or if an event happens.  Then resolve event via the actions it involves using the action templates or player can personalize choices.”  The software is running continuously only stopping to get input from GM or players as appropriate.  That is when an event occurs that the characters notice (25-27)”.

Quote
Steve writes, “Now, you need to tell the computer this in order for the teaching process to run in zero time. I might imagine using a formal language, or a UI, to add these features to the computer's internal representation of the gameworld. Some work I can pre-empt and do before a session, some must be done inside a session.”
Yes it is a UI, DM UI’s can be seen section II of GM’s guide.  Player’s UI are in Section III of standard rules.  Yes absolutely, the GM needs a world (best situation) or at least an adventure that is done ahead of time, using the GM Toolbox for ORS.  So remember my goal is to add realism and playability during game play.  Now you could argue that the GM has to do A LOT of work.  Yes, if he is doing everything himself, his World, his Adventures, his NPCs, etc, etc..  But Some GMs spend 1-1 or even 2 hours preparing for every hour of game play.  At least, they did back in old AD&D 1st edition days.  Yes I had no life….”

Quote
Steve writes, “To provide a concrete example; there's a very nice language for designing gameworlds for interactive fiction (text adventures) called Inform. It's a lovely way to describe a gameworld to a computer. ORS is going to need something similar because I must convey my imagination into an executable form within the computer.”
Yes, what can I say you are right again.  The ORS GM Toolbox, was the idea BUT Inform may be a way also, if they are compatible.  NOTE:  For ORS the plan is to have a GIS (Graphical Info Sys) as part of the GM Toolbox, see section 11.7 of GM’s guide, and Section VI—The World Setting. 

Quote
Steve writes, “Again, I'll need specifics. If I decided to use ORS as the generic part of my system, and then I decided to add my own specifics, what do I have to do?

Can you take me through two examples; one straightforward, one harder.

First example; I want to run a game where there are things called soul-stones. If you are carrying a soul-stone, it makes you elated, and sharper mentally, but it slowly destroys your sense of self. How would I go about putting that into the system such that players could have a soul-stone in their inventory, and the effects get applied automatically?”
See Appendix, section 37 on magical items.  The GM would create the soul stones using the procedure outlined.  Once created the ORS engine knows how to use it.

Quote
Steve writes, “Second example; I want to run a game where players cast spells by composing poems. The more complex the poem, the more powerful the effect. Limericks can do petty magic, and twelve-book epic poems can destroy cities. Take me through the steps I'd need to perform to incorporate that magic system.”
This is handled already see ORS Codex magic rituals and components, section 3.2, In ORS, singing/speaking poems is considered a verbal component.  More information on how it mods things are in the Magic Rituals and Components section of GM guide section 9.1 page 18.  This would handle it based on the user’s abilities traits and skills.  BUT if you are asking the player to do a limerick/poem, then ORS doesn’t do it.  In my opinion the players are not the ones doing the action, their characters are.  I like to think about my 1st edition AD&D mage.  He had a 19 intelligence and a 16 wisdom, my character is both more intelligent and more wise than I am.  I could figure out a lot of things in games and adventures but it wasn’t my character it was me.  ORS allows the character’s skill, ability and traits to be used in a multi-variate distribution and then based upon the difficulty and the environment around him an outcome is ‘drawn’ from the distribution. 

I realize I didn’t answer all your concerns here but.  I can only type so much.  Sorry about the references but this was quicker for me.  Besides the vision is codified there, my brain is a selective sieve.  Only somethings stick!

Kent
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dreamborn
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« Reply #21 on: March 03, 2011, 01:44:56 PM »

OPPS my mistake...
Quote
Quote
Steve writes, “Again, I'll need specifics. If I decided to use ORS as the generic part of my system, and then I decided to add my own specifics, what do I have to do?

Can you take me through two examples; one straightforward, one harder.

First example; I want to run a game where there are things called soul-stones. If you are carrying a soul-stone, it makes you elated, and sharper mentally, but it slowly destroys your sense of self. How would I go about putting that into the system such that players could have a soul-stone in their inventory, and the effects get applied automatically?”
See Appendix, section 37 on magical items.  The GM would create the soul stones using the procedure outlined.  Once created the ORS engine knows how to use it.

The section on creating magic items in actually on page 34 Section IV of the GM Guide.  The reference above is for items I created from my world.


Sorry for the confusion

K
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SteveCooper
Member

Posts: 19


« Reply #22 on: March 04, 2011, 06:19:26 AM »


Hi, Kent.

What you are describing in ORS seems very much like the Aurora adventure development tools in Neverwinter Nights;

The item designer.

So now, I think I'm understanding what the experience of designing and playing an ORS game is. I'm understanding it to be a computer RPG like Neverwinter Nights, but where certain interactions (like conversation with NPCs) switches everyone out of the computer environment and into freeform, social interactions over the tabletop. Play flip-flops between the two modes.

This understanding is starting to make me more comfortable. I was trying to fit it into a mental pigeonhole; tabletop RPG with computer assistance. But actually, the computer aspects are so dominant that it feels better to think of it as computer RPG with GM assistance.

My main reason for feeling this is considering how we'd both approach the scenario of the PCs on a two-week ship voyage. In my approach (and I think this is typical of tabletop RPGs) I'm simply describing the passing of a large amount of time in a few words. The interactions are conversational. In yours, the time is managed mostly by time spent in a computer UI.

Also, I considered the kind of people I know and the games they play, and wondered who I could get to play ORS. Some of my friends are avid tabletop RPG players but won't play computer RPGs. I think if I were to suggest we play ORS, they'd either decline, or dislike the experience. The required interaction with the computer for every action would pull them away from the things they enjoy in tabletop.

On the flip side, the players who will have LAN parties to play Neverwinter Nights would be more open to a game played like this. They'd be comfortable with the idea of designing characters through a computer interface and managing their inventory on an inventory screen.

Also, of course, there is the matter of designing gameworld; in this system I must build a great deal in a computer, and the players' interactions are largely involved with the computer model, not a discussed imaginitive idea.

--

So we come back now to the idea of design goals. This game is going to appeal to some people and not to others. It's going to be great for certain types of play and rule out others. However, at the moment the story you're telling about it misled me.

The story you need to tell is of a hybrid of computer games and tabletop RPGs. Make it clearer what experiences players and GMs are likely to have. Explain where it sits within the wide range of existing games. See if you can distill it down into an elevator pitch.

I think in order for you to pick up people willing to help, you'll probably need to start looking in some additional places. You might want to talk to people who write interactive fiction (IF), and computer RPG designers. You're going to need a team of programmers for the user interface and the networking, and you'll need a group of people who are willing to code the system itself, and a whole bunch of understanding about how the world works.
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dreamborn
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« Reply #23 on: September 16, 2011, 07:52:35 AM »

Hello All

The latest versions of the 4 core rulebooks have recently been uploaded.

Kent
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