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The Game Guy

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Well, until the final disposition of the Torg assets are determined it's mostly just a waiting game. A waiting game where my efforts are better spent on other projects.

 

I look forward to Mr. Gibson detailing the assets up for sale so we can move forward.

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Fans discussing TORG should not be dependent upon such, though I can understand if a prospective potential future publisher might be hesitant.

 

I only wish that Eric's manuscript could be published by whomever gets TORG.

I liked a lot of what he was talking about and it seemed like a good update to the game.

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It's not that I'm not a fan, however Torg is not the only thing I am a fan of.

 

I am a big Torg fan, but I don't believe that the Torg assets currently have great value (no judgements here, just a market fact). While there's a lack of value, I do believe that the appropriate actions might be able to turn this around.

 

Might - because we're heading for bad economic times, and as everyone knows it's the luxuries are the first hit. So at this juncture there's even a concern of recouping any potential investment in any of the WEG properties due to their current state.

 

In order for there to be a turn around, as much as I may also be a fan, there has to be a successful business plan first.

 

And, FWIW, I do discuss Torg with the folks in my weekly gaming crew. (less typing)

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I do find it hilarious that the "bleak financial outlook" can hinder TORG but yet D&D is still operating from the "gamers have unlimited disposable income" school of publishing and yet thriving when the rules of commerce says they should not.

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We derailed this thread pretty good, albeit unintentionally.

 

Sorry folks, welcome to the Torg forums!

 

@ Skeloric : lets take this to one of the threads in the WEG discussion forum.

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New member here!

 

Thanks for the forums, Mike! I just sat down to a game of Torg two weeks ago - first game in ~ ten years. It was everything that I recalled it being. We had a blast and look forward to the next session.

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Just how many of us still visit this area?

Or have EVER visited this area?

 

I feel like I am talking to myself here.

 

I know what you are saying. The forum has slowed down a bit (but I have been to other forums that are slow now too). I think it has to do with people back to school and other things.

 

If we can get the word out more and help this site grow I think it will help.

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Just how many of us still visit this area?

Or have EVER visited this area?

 

I feel like I am talking to myself here.

 

I know what you are saying. The forum has slowed down a bit (but I have been to other forums that are slow now too). I think it has to do with people back to school and other things.

 

If we can get the word out more and help this site grow I think it will help.

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I think I can come close to asserting that I create 90% of the TORG threads in this area.

Most of which consist of just my first opening post.

I certainly hope you don't decide to delete this area for the MiB D6 RPG or Metabarons or something...

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I think I can come close to asserting that I create 90% of the TORG threads in this area.

Most of which consist of just my first opening post.

I certainly hope you don't decide to delete this area for the MiB D6 RPG or Metabarons or something...

 

Yes, it is correct to say you create 90% of the threads and I don't at this current time have any plans to delete this forum.

 

Rest assured on that.

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Skeloric, I have the same fear as you have. This forum started very promising but I fear it is about to take the same route the WEG forum and the Torg newsletter did, which made me skip both. Not that I intend to insinuate my disposition on what this forum should be on anyone. I only want to say why I am here and that I won't be here if I hadn't the hope it could be what I am looking for.

 

I hope this to be a forum where the glitches and possibilities of Torg and other WEG material is discussed in order to improve it, maybe even give it a new start, no matter what the future of the company will be. After all, it is the fans that keep any game going. With nobody playing it even D&D wouldn't exist. Without constant interest of the fans, there would have been no resurrection of Star Trek and no new Star Wars movies. Torg holds so much merit as a background that it could even develop its own life disconnected from the roleplaying market maybe incarnated in a movie or a computer game.

 

 

But this can only happen if there still is a fan base that keeps it alive in some way. There are not many backgrounds out there in the roleplaying market that have this merit. D&D f.i. which was tried as a movie does not. When you take a look at all those movies developed from computer games, it looks as if moviemakers are desperately looking for fresh ideas. Now they are delving into the comics where they have a pletora of material but it is only a matter of time when they will look for ideas in the roleplaying market. And I hope they will stumble upon Torg and recognize its merits. OK, these are very wild wishes but stranger things have happened.

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I fully agree that we do need system discussions but most of them were either co-opted by Jasyn Jones or started by him and always amounted to him gutting TORG completely and making it be something completely different and wholly his.

 

But he did say something that I find I fully agree with, in presenting a HOUSE RULE it should be as simple and concise and -- most importantly -- achieve that which it is claimed to achieve.

Jasyn was also a rabid (foaming even) foe of "kludge", which can be commendable when tempered and focused properly -- which it did not always seem to be...

 

Then there was Jasyn's ongoing desire to have the Axioms fit some sort of mathematical formula that only he seemed to understand and seemed either unwilling or unable to explain beyond asserting that he knew best and the people who agreed with him were a better class of person than the people who didn't.

Still, the current Axioms were hopelessly useless in the original core as there were too many holes that we were to somehow ASSUME what might be in there and I doubt that we'd all have the same assumption even if someone were to start us off with a bunch of leading statements.

 

To be honest despite him being my archenemy and on the top of the list of rogues among the super-villains I battle, I wish he'd recover and return.

Jasyn might have been one to ignite a flamewar in his wake almost continuously, but the forums seemed more ALIVE and HEALTHY when he was around.

People seemed more ENGAGED and more EAGER TO PARTICIPATE when they could drop in and rip Jasyn a new ass.

People just need a villain to be victorious over to feel as if they are really a part of something.

 

 

I'm certain if someone has a system question, KJ will answer it to the point where an entire thread could be named "Ask Kansas Jim" just so a single thread could be referenced to see the questions and his answers.

If I had the power I'd even sticky such a thread -- after checking with him on his desire to participate in such a thread naturally.

 

One thing that always bothered me about the WEG forum's format was two separate TORG topic areas -- one under System and one under worlds.

They both seemed to get an equal share of system and setting threads which seemed to defeat the purpose of two areas.

After all, if I discuss what I like or hate about a Cosm eventually I will discuss mechanics and how they needed to be tweaked in that Cosm.

Or if I were to start discussing the game system, I might eventually mention a Cosm where the game system required some sort of special tweak which could indicate a needed World Law.

It was a situation where we were in a constant struggle to determine the chicken/egg conundrum.

 

But as I once asserted back in 2004, there is more to divide us than to unite us after TORG has been gone so long, there were some who had instituted enough House Rules that they could have as easily been playing FATAL for as much as they deviated from TORG.

And everyone wanted their PERSONAL perversion of the game to become the new baseline which was tearing the forums in about a 100 different directions.

I think I was the quiet still voice that often counseled for no change, in that NO change is better than change just for the sake of change.

Change had to be carefully weighed to determine if it added something desirable and also that it only removed that which was UNdesirable -- usually, what was offered did the exact opposite: adding UNdesirable effects while removing the desirable.

 

Mostly I am experiencing a lot of frustration with the WEG forums themselves.

Only 65 people migrated to the Fan Forums but those 65 were the ONLY people actually participating at all in the WEG forums out of the 900+ members.

We used to have close to 200 people who were D6 fans exclusively constantly posting and another 150 who were exclusive to TORG forums posting there and maybe another sporadic 50 at any one time (out of the last 200) dropping in a rare post wherever they were at the time.

The place was alive and vibrant.

But people just drifted away.

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You show perfectly what the problem was. Though you talk about how there where discussions, you only talk about rules discussions. Torg has a fairly good set of rules. Of course there is always something that could be done better, ther rule system is better than most. On the other hand, the background lacks a lot, but no one on the WEG forum seemed to be interested in discussing how to expand or develop the background. It is as if you where running a TV studio with nearly no ratings and would discuss how to implement 3D and smell but don't give a damn about what you air.

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I'm all about the content.

Other guys can discuss how to tear apart a V8 engine and rebore the "whosits" or putting in high performance pistons.

I want to talk about how the seats could be made comfortable with one of those beaded setback cushion covers and why I prefer blue colored cars over red and, most of all, what locations can I drive my car to and what I can do once I get there.

 

I want to add to the setting.

I want to build a new Orrorshan Horror based upon the firm belief that death might just be preferable to an IRS audit.

I want to tweak Tharkold on a lark until I've created a whole other Cosm completely by accident.

I want to consider what a Star Wars Cosm with the Emperor as a High Lord might be like and what Axioms and World Laws it might require.

That is my vision of TORG.

That is where I want to go.

However, the TORG area remains quiet which has me believing we are in a very minor minority indeed.

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Yes, I fear we are a minority in the group that still plays Torg which is a minority in the RPG community which is a minority in the gamers market which is a minority in the population as a whole. Depressing, isn't it?

 

Do you remember the Torg 2000 homepage? Some people (maybe it was only the GM of a group that developed this setting) took the pains to write a complete new version of Torg. This was great stuff and I think it could work. But it had no effect on the game market, not even on the WEG forum.

 

There are different approaches for keeping Torg up:

1) a new version of the background

2) expanding on the existing background where it lacks

3) finding and fixing the glitches in the background

4) a follow-up on the war (maybe a new version of war's end and what happens after that)

5) new cosms

6) new or better rules

7) streamlining of the existing rules (f.i. spells that follow a set line of rules instead of the existing spells that come each with their own special rules. Shadowrun did a good job in SR4 with the same problem). Kansas Jim has done a good job to begin with but there is still a lot to be done.

 

You might have realized that I mostly refrain from discussing new cosms as I don't have interest in opening new cans of worms while there is still so much to be done in order to make Torg a better game. No slight on you intended, this is just my preference. If there was a plan by a group of fans or a new publisher of Torg to put out new worlds in a Torg setting, I would be quite interested in discussions about these worlds. The charm of Torg is not that you can have a multitude of worlds but that they interact with each other.

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Another line of thought to follow this up

 

Now the media is buzzing about Web 2.0 and user-generated content. Torg has been doing this since when it was started, not in the web at first (though it was in use-net) but the infiniverse newsletter was the same off-line as today is done by publishers online. Give the users a chance to develop new content.

 

The most obvious monument to this are the Creatures' sourcebooks and the Character Collection. I am not sure if Torg was the first RPG company to try this approach, it was the first to use it that radically. It was discussed quite a lot in the roleplayer communities if it is legitimate to let players create content that is at the core of a game like creatures. Shadowrun even went further in letting players from germany create the germany sourcebook. And it turned out to be one of the best Shadowrun sourcebooks.

 

The key to it being a success obviously was that Fasa gave their cooperating partner Fanpro the OK to coordinate the various ideas. I think a collaboration of fans to create stuff can only be done by some kind of coordination. Be it an editor that has the final say or a voting forum, but you need a thumb-up or thumb-down process.

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Another line of thought to follow this up

 

Now the media is buzzing about Web 2.0 and user-generated content. Torg has been doing this since when it was started, not in the web at first (though it was in use-net) but the infiniverse newsletter was the same off-line as today is done by publishers online. Give the users a chance to develop new content.

 

The most obvious monument to this are the Creatures' sourcebooks and the Character Collection. I am not sure if Torg was the first RPG company to try this approach, it was the first to use it that radically. It was discussed quite a lot in the roleplayer communities if it is legitimate to let players create content that is at the core of a game like creatures. Shadowrun even went further in letting players from germany create the germany sourcebook. And it turned out to be one of the best Shadowrun sourcebooks.

 

The key to it being a success obviously was that Fasa gave their cooperating partner Fanpro the OK to coordinate the various ideas. I think a collaboration of fans to create stuff can only be done by some kind of coordination. Be it an editor that has the final say or a voting forum, but you need a thumb-up or thumb-down process.

Now THAT is a lot to chew on.

I think that allowing fan made Cosms to be marketed and sold as a form of Open Gaming License or Creative Commons license might be what you are looking for.

I think such would appeal to me as well.

I'd not look to allowing people to get deeper into the system however, such may be fine for D6 but I think it'd be hellish for TORG.

Mostly as we have SEEN what kind of result we'd get in all of those threads inciting radicalism as a tool for updating an RPG's core game system.

Jasyn Jones may be the first name that a person could conjure with but I think him quite stable in his way next to a few others out there.

 

Let's not forget that I have proven myself a goddamn nuisance even to well reasoned and logical arguments, though I'll also gladly point out I've matured a small bit since 2004-5.

(A man who'll be 40 as of June of 2009 should have matured a hell of a lot earlier but it seems I'd not quite gotten the knack of it until now.)

Oh I recall people trying to claim that Psionics were anything except what they were, a thing wholly itself.

That the group at large seemed to come to this understanding DESPITE Jasyn does not in any way diminish that he was right.

On the contrary, it should have as feeling a bit like asses for dismissing the idea out of it merely being because it was Jasyn proposing it.

Damn I miss him and hope his recovery arrives long before whatever experts he has conferred with have given him.

The forums were so damn alive when we were going at it.

I feel like an old general raising a toast to the fallen general of the enemy's army.

Generals -- it is said -- understand each other in a way that no one else can.

Especially true of old generals, I think.

So I think that Cosms could be allowed to be presented/published by an outside force from the company itself.

Here is a little bit of a test: Try to think up 30 Cosms.

I have no clue how Eric/Hellsreach was managing it, but I have had to pull out every trick I could think of to work up even a half assed attempt at about 7 of my own creation.

But there are more than 30 settings strewn about through companies both extant and defunct, having them translated into TORG Cosms seems a much more satisfactory solution that designing them whole cloth.

A short list:

1. Deadlands

2. Talislantia

3. Champions

4. Toon

5. Ogre (the giant AI driven tank-bots)

6. Paranoia

7. AFMBE

8. Fading Suns

9. 7th Sea

10. 5 Rings

11. Shadowrun

12. Space 1889

13. Castle Falkenstein

14. World of Darkness

15. Traveller

16. Nephilim

17. Warhammer/ Warhammer 40K

18. Marl

19. Shatterzone

(The last two because WEG has 2 properties that could be added quite nicely)

20. Metabarons (they used D6 once for this license during the Humanoids/Yeti days, but maybe returning to produce the game as a TORG Cosm could happen)

21. Midnight (I could see a at least a few of the 3.x games jumping away from D&D 4.0 to TORG -- but only if the company could display a secured position in the marketplace)

 

What do most if not all of these have?

A complete setting, which is exactly what we have so far NOT seen in any Cosm offered to this moment.

 

In this way will we avoid trying to come up with it all ourselves, but it would make TORG the inter-RPG "battleground" RPG, a very nice niche for the system and setting.

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You are thinking Macro while I was thinking Micro. This is not slight to your thought, it would be great to have a bigger Torg universe with more worlds (especially Talislanta which would do for a far better fantasy cosm). But what I would like to see and commit my 2 cents to are in-depth descriptions of the existing cosms. Of course, I could try to do this myself but I am too lazy for that and I have lots of other projects and real work on my mind right now.

 

You need no company to specificially open source it or give a commission to publish fan material, you only need an owner who allows fans to publish fan material (and even this is more in the grey as laws are concerned, but in order to avoid lawsuits, it is necessary to get permission). I don't know of any RPG company that is not glad to see fans create their own material as long as they don't sell it.

 

What WEG did back in the 90s was to ask fans specifically to send in their material so that it can be published as official material. What Fasa did, was to take completely fan-generated material for a sourcebook. For a move like this, you need a functioning game company.

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While the image of fan produced content would be nice -- I've seen a couple of fan made Cosms that I'd like to see get a serious 96 page treatment -- fan conversions of other RPG properties would not be as useful as buying official product where possible.

Granted, the only Star Wars TORG Cosm would by its essential nature be a fan made conversion and such may be true of a few others.

 

Siembeda's Army of goose stepping/sieg heil-ing lawyers would cut to ribbons anyone foolish enough to make a conversion of a Palladium product to anything else, so no product -- official or fan made -- will ever exist.

Even if it would, the Axioms would all be up across the board worse than Tharkold with some World Law of "any thing goes as long as there is an ongoing power creep between supplements".

 

Overall, competing with other companies in the industry to produce Cosms would sure as hell get a much more complete presentation of the original TORG Cosms.

This as much as anything is what drives my desire.

A nice sized selection would not hurt either.

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Of course, this would be interesting especially with those worlds that are not supported anymore by their publishers and those that have no good rules set. But here I would vote for more than just a conversion. With the Torg rules set a conversion can be done easily, but why should that attract fans of the converted world to Torg? The only way to do this is to give additional impetus for roleplaying in the converted world. This could be

 

1) Mix Torg worlds and the converted world. But how does this fit into the overall Poss war? Maybe another invasion with other worlds? F.i. Nile Empire, Space 1889, Talislanta, Dark Conspiracy, Cyberpunk and Land Below.

 

2) Describe the world as being intertwined into the Torg cosmology and giving additional background for the converted world. F.i. the Dark Lords of Dark Conspiracy are nothing less than High Lords (I was amazed when reading the Dark Conspiracy novels about how much this fitted into Torg cosmology)

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