Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Clichés


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So,  Dungeons and Dragons and lots of people saying they never fight dragons. Jez  brought this up and loads of people commented how they haven't encountered an actual dragon in the game.

This began coalescing in my mind along some other comments I've heard recently about the OSR being for many about doing new things the old way to breathe some life into it, and a comment about how I run cliché filled games and how NGR doesn't exactly fit as old school,  but isn't a new "focused" game and still plays as D&D.

So it kind of crystallized as a semi-coherent thought that I like to run old clichés ,  except ideally done well.  There is a lot of talk about how "done to death" old clichés are,  but  what could be more cliché than slaying the dragon? and it seems very few people have actually played a game where that occurred.

I believe D&D does some tropes really poorly.  "Hack ankles until it dies" and weird clusterfudges of rules to make swashbucklers work alongside knights and blah blah blah.  But it strikes me as interesting design difference between finding the tropes D&D does well and rocking the hell out of them (many LotFP adventures do this) and games which focus on making the fantasy tropes D&D does poorly ,  be fun and awesome (to avoid pure self promotion I'll mention  OSH as another example of this)

Or am I did I just accidentally snort a line of Kool-Aid instead of having insight? It is easy to confuse the two?   Have you actually played or ran adventures that played these clichés straight and without irony or a twist?

2 comments:

  1. Hmm... I think it's Pixy Stix you've snorted. :)

    We've done the dragon both ways. As a straight fight (including one with a guy jumping on it's back and trying to strangle it with a spiked chain). And as something different. In one group I'm running it's funny because they've negotiated with far more dragons than they've fought.

    In those cases the dragons were not the main foe and they had goals that the party could exploit in order to avoid the fight.

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    1. Interesting, I tend to run dragons with no goals beyond burninate, kidnap/eat princesses, sleep on money, really heavy on the cheese there.
      Do you find the dragon needs schemes to be fearsome?

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