Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Pushing a Rock

In the process of moving my wiki, I have completely moved all the pages that are associated with sage studies ... that is, general subject headings that serve as categories for specific abilities that the players would possess.

For example, one sage study might be "Scouting," something that rangers possess.  And under that heading would be a number of orientation and survival abilities, such as hunting, pathfinding, sheltering, making fire and so on.  Ideally, each of these abilities will have rules that explain how they can be used by the characters: how much food hunting provides, or what sheltering is, or how to make a fire from raw materials, and so on.

Now, I notice that many readers quite like these studies and abilities; several people have told me in the past that they use them in their campaigns, and I often hear someone write that they would like me to "finish" the sage abilities list.  Which is a lovely, lovely thought.

But I'd like to take this moment to point out that, having added sage abilities to all the classes, I now have a total of 80 subject headings.  Please chew on that for a while.  And then please realize that most subject headings are expected to have between 10 and 15 sage abilities attached to them, minimum.  That's somewhere in the neighborhood of 800 to 1,200 separate abilities that I need to write.

Nor is that necessarily the end number.  Any ability of any kind can be created out of thin air, if it makes sense that a player of a certain knowledge level ought to have it.  So I am basically creating a list of every skill known to humans, and then making rules for those skills.

This is a lot of time, and effort, and imagination, and thorough research, supported by a willingness to keep coming up with more and more content as it presents itself, and not quitting out of having a simple rational perspective.

Therefore, I think it needs to be explained that ALL this content on the wiki about sage abilities is FREE, and that I am under no obligation to finish any of it, ever.  Not that I'll quit.  But I do think it is damned inconsiderate for some readers to specifically ask for MORE of this content, when they are not ready to give me a simple donation for what I've done so far and to help pay for the time I would have to spend in the future in order to satisfy their expectation.

This sage abilities stuff is pretty damn freaky.  It is an incomprehensible concept, really, that only exists now through sheer stubbornness on my part.  I never want to charge for it, I encourage people to use it, steal it, incorporate it into their campaigns, freely and openly, because I think it makes all the principles underlying what a player can do with knowledge more rational and user-friendly, for everyone's benefit.

But please, please, don't press me to do more, or push to make me feel guilty because it isn't done yet, or use words like "your only major complaint" to describe how you rate my unwillingness to finish this Sisyphean task.  Unless you want to help me find the time by giving me financial support.

Otherwise, it is simply rude.

1 comment:

Lance Duncan said...

Lol, this is great. Of course it's an endless task. Everything in gaming is. Someone expects you(or their gm) to finish a map of the world when it took the usgs nearly 50 years to map the us, or create in depth rules for something you have no personal experience or knowledge of.

Like others I think your additions to the game are great,but I don't expect you to do my work for me. If I take a rule from you or anyone else I test it and change it for my specific game and create more details where needed. I don't need you to write out every single little rule especially if I'm probably going to change half of them anyway. It's the idea and the method that I use, not the numbers.