HomeDungeons & DragonsPathfinder and 3.5Why Tabletop Gaming Will Always Trump MMOs


Why Tabletop Gaming Will Always Trump MMOs — 2 Comments

  1. I don’t think you really understand the difference between scripting and real AI.
    Maybe not next year or even ten years from now, but eventually a computer will be able to run that scenario and just about any others you can throw at it. It will probably also do it in photo-realistic 3d with a driving soundtrack composed especially for the occasion.
    No need to get defensive about it though. It will almost certainly be able to run in a subservient mode that allows a mere mortal to act as a sort of director, so good GMs will be even better too.

  2. Wow, Matthew:
    way to miss the point.

    Ina Tabletop game, one with a DM, or at least one in which you interact with people, rather than rules, the rules become more like guidelines and can be suspended or broken for more interesting storytelling. You’ll never do that in WoW or SWTOR, or whatever MMO you happen to play. (and this is an EXAMPLE, so don’t waste my time suggesting you haven’t ever played an MMO).

    I remember one D&D game I was in. My character was a permanently drunk dwarf. The GM let it go, and told me I would get the drunken modifiers instead if I ever became sober. Let’s see you have that freedom and creativity in a video game that isn’t specifically scripted to allow it.

    I don’t think we’re anywhere near AI that can anticipate, and more importantly, understand and react with the ideas that humans can come up with given the freedom Tabletop RPGs allow. I’ve been in games where trying risky Indiana Jones type moves sometimes worked, where the players could be awarded “drama dice” to increase their chances at being successful at facepalmingly stupid manuevers or ideas if they did so in character.

    I’ll give you an example you can hopefully relate to. Did you play World of Warcraft? Of course you did (everyone did). You get into a group of 5 people, and decide to go into a dungeon. While in there, you all perform well, and follow the roles you are expected to, and you get to the boss. The boss is on top of a big pirate ship. How does the boss fight go? Odds are, it’s the same thing you’ve been doing. what innovation can be had in sending in a tank followed by DPS and just pounding away at a giant enemy while avoiding his attacks?

    Try sending in a party of 5 D&D adventurers. They get choices. I’ll bet in a game controlled by AI, you can’t, for example, fire an arrow that can cut the rope holding the sail up, in order to release the cloth so you can use it to wrap and subdue the boss. I’ll bet you can’t attempt to negotiate with him, or bribe him. I’ll bet he can’t attempt to negotiate with or bribe you not to kill him. And suppose he’s really easy for your group. Why, a good DM can change it up, maybe make him a bit tougher, or add something unexpected to the encounter. The boss fight in WoW? The same. every time.

    That’s the point I think, players can try things, make their own rules (more or less) and have an _adventure_ instead of a shared quest.

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