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Author Topic: An Introduction to the Hybrid System  (Read 5482 times)

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Offline PatMan33

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An Introduction to the Hybrid System
« on: September 29, 2009, 10:26:35 pm »
The Hybrid System
Last Edited 9/29/09

An Introduction

Welcome! After a lot of deliberating and arguing back and forth we've (Neoadept, Yossitaru, Zolinn, and myself) have come up with a system that we feel is ready to test. Special thanks to Mr. Wizard and Yokto for offering additional insight. What we have here is not a replacement for the old system of Role Play; actually, what we've put together will hopefully be a viable alternative to the current system and will allow newer players a chance to actually be able to breathe whilst playing with the veterans. Our primary goal was to eliminate the ever-increasing amount of scripting taking place in our RPs. Scripting (which is basically pre-planning the story) makes for interesting plots but only for those involved; as well, the veteran players pretty much have exclusive rights to scripting and can dictate the entire RP. This is not good for the longevity of what we do. New players suffocate under the pressure of having to comply to the story laid out by the big guys and regular players become frustrated at not being able to exercise their creative abilities. Worse still, the stories have been becoming increasingly predictable and to say that we've fallen into a rut would be an understatement.

The Hybrid systems offers a way to alleviate these problems and without a lot of stress. Basically what we've done is inserted some random chance elements (like what you would find in Dungeons & Dragons) that will impact the outcome of the story as well as faction movements. This should prevent people from planning too far ahead in the RP since now nobody will be able to predict the outcome. Of course, the outcome of a story arc can be influenced; however, it is no longer just a simple matter of writing in the advantage. All of the existing guidelines and concepts will remain unchanged. The Hybrid System offers two major additions to the current system that I will now explain. Please offer feedback, we're very interested in seeing what you think? We've also got a test RP planned which will be starting very soon. We'd love for anyone with an interest to join and help us out!


The Details
There are two major additions that the Hybrid System puts forward and they are the Outcome Roll and the Sabotage Roll. Both are related and both tie exclusively into the plot of the RP.

Outcome Roll: The Outcome Roll is the simplest of the two new mechanics. It's so simple I almost don't need to explain it. During the critical moment of the story a twenty-sided die is rolled to determine the outcome. By default, each faction will have an equal chance of winning the roll. Since we typically only have two factions (heroes and villains) the roll will be easy enough to conduct. There will be opportunities for the factions involved to improve their chances of winning the Outcome Roll; however, neither side is assured victory and the story could go in any number of ways.

In the old system we would leave this up to the individual writers; however, that led to choices that were usually self-serving and more or less predictable. With the Outcome Roll, nobody really knows who is going to come out victorious. It can be used for physical fights amongst characters or elections or even plain old luck. This should drastically cut down on scripting and keep players focused on the present. And really, focusing on the present leads to more fulfilling stories and a better experience overall. It will also mean that newer players will have a much better chance of getting their voices heard.

Sabotage Roll: The Sabotage Roll is the real essence of the Hybrid System. With it a faction has a chance to increase their chances of "winning" the arc. Sabotage Rolls have a direct impact on the Outcome Roll and will be a player's best friend. The way it works is fairly simple; though, there is some basic math involved. To use a Sabotage Roll a player has to be in a logical situation in which their character has a chance to score some points for the team. Now, this does mean that a Sabotage can be used at any time; however, remember that you'll still be operating within the traditional guidelines and so you must be mindful of when and how a Sabotage is being used. There is a lot of leeway in using Sabotage Rolls and it was designed that way such that the players' creative juices won't be stifled.

A few things about the Sabotage Rolls so that we're all clear. As far as the two-faction system is concerned, the villain faction will have one Sabotage chance per arc and the hero faction will have two per arc. This means that some thought must go into using a Sabotage Roll, as all characters in a faction will be drawing from the same pool. There is a 50-50 chance of successfully pulling off a Sabotage Roll. If you succeed in a Sabotage Roll, your faction's chances of winning the Outcome Roll increase. Should you fail the Sabotage Roll, your faction's chances of winning the Outcome Roll decrease. Here is where you have to pay attention. The breakdown of how a Sabotage impacts the Outcome differs depending on the faction. I'll try to make this as simple as possible but if you get lost, please ask questions!

I'll be using the two-faction setup as a model.

Hero:
If you are playing the hero role and succeed with a Sabotage Roll your chances of winning the Outcome Roll increase by 10%.
If you are playing the hero role and fail a Sabotage Roll your chances of winning the Outcome Roll decrease by 5%.

Villain:
If you are playing the villain role and succeed with a Sabotage Roll your chances of winning the Outcome Roll increase by 10%.
If you are playing the villain role and fail a Sabotage Roll your chances of winning the Outcome Roll do not decrease.


And that's more or less it. I tried to make the Sabotage Roll as easy to understand as possible; however, I'm sure there are questions. So I'd like for anyone and everyone with an interest to voice their opinions. Feedback is encouraged and will help us make a better system. Ask anything and tell us anything. If you like it, great! Don't like it? Tell us why. Thanks for your time.



Offline Zolinn

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Re: An Introduction to the Hybrid System
« Reply #1 on: September 29, 2009, 11:35:59 pm »
As you know I think it looks good. I'm sure this test RP will help us figure out what needs changing and what seems to function well. Also, to stress what Pat said, this is NOT a replacement for the current RP system.

Offline Haseri

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Re: An Introduction to the Hybrid System
« Reply #2 on: September 30, 2009, 08:46:21 am »
Well, like any good theory, the only way we'll know it'd work is testing it.

Offline /lurk

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Re: An Introduction to the Hybrid System
« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2009, 08:47:05 am »
So it's just like normal... except at the end you flip a coin and if you get tails, the bad guys win?

What the hell, Patman?
Not a winner anymore.

Offline Yannick

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Re: An Introduction to the Hybrid System
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2009, 08:49:40 am »
The thing that is most stressful, well atleast is was for me, is the fact that most of the RPers are either American or Europeans able to stay awake all night and thus able to participate decently in the RP. While the others have to read up a page or two every day or so.

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Offline PatMan33

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Re: An Introduction to the Hybrid System
« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2009, 09:30:55 am »
That is a tricky issue to contend with, Yannick. Typically the RPs that last don't advance more than a page per day, at least in my experience. I think your efforts might bear more fruit if you play in an RP that is less-manic. That advice is a bit wishy-washy though, isn't it? I mean, in my mind I see the solution as a simple one. With the next RP that you're in, try to make a point of letting the other players know of your situation and request that they post at a slower pace.

You're not alone in that sentiment either. We've had our Western European members and our American members complain of the very same issue. I don't think it is so much an issue of time zones as it is an issue of pacing and restraint amongst the players. If you spell it out clearly that you would like a slower pace the other players should respect that. And if they refuse to respect that you can probably expect that RP to fall apart in a spectacular ball of fire soon anyway. :)

Offline Yannick

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Re: An Introduction to the Hybrid System
« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2009, 09:56:41 am »
Well I wouldn't mind if the action doesn't always happen while I'm sleeping making me miss the villains completely usually.

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Offline PatMan33

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Re: An Introduction to the Hybrid System
« Reply #7 on: September 30, 2009, 10:36:18 am »
That can be arranged, no problem. You should join us in the test RP for this new system!

Offline martyk

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Re: An Introduction to the Hybrid System
« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2009, 12:13:22 pm »
Seems interesting.  Only time will tell whether it works out or not, but I'm optimistic.
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Offline Yannick

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Re: An Introduction to the Hybrid System
« Reply #9 on: September 30, 2009, 12:29:36 pm »
That can be arranged, no problem. You should join us in the test RP for this new system!
Hm, if that can be arranged, I'll sign up any day.

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Offline Darth Grievi

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Re: An Introduction to the Hybrid System
« Reply #10 on: September 30, 2009, 04:42:06 pm »
I agree with Yannick, and I've had some of the same problems, being in the Western US (GMT -8). What would usually happen is that the action went on while I was at school. I think the key here is limiting the pace. Maybe limiting people to 2-3 posts per day (unless it's not directly related to the plot... useless conversation in the introduction and the like.)

Also, I'm in on the test RP! :)

Offline PatMan33

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Re: An Introduction to the Hybrid System
« Reply #11 on: September 30, 2009, 07:12:50 pm »
Hm, if that can be arranged, I'll sign up any day.

Well if that's the case, it has been arranged. ;)

I'd like to be able to trust the players enough so that we wouldn't have to limit posts so I think that should be our first option; however, if at any time you feel as if you're being cheated, say something. We can put a post limit in place or do some other thing to help keep things fair.

Offline Raz

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Re: An Introduction to the Hybrid System
« Reply #12 on: September 30, 2009, 07:26:49 pm »
What? Controlling the story with die rolls? Since when has that been smart? Chance is not good for interesting stories.

Offline Zolinn

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Re: An Introduction to the Hybrid System
« Reply #13 on: September 30, 2009, 07:59:57 pm »
Quite the opposite actually. The story will be interesting for everyone as nobody will know exactly how it will turn out.

Offline Raz

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Re: An Introduction to the Hybrid System
« Reply #14 on: September 30, 2009, 08:29:25 pm »
No? I don't agree with the notion that if force A has done things more intelligently than force B, force B has just as much chance to succeed as force A, which put more time into its planning.