Friday, September 28, 2018

Much Ado For Errybuddy

I been thinking. I'm a zero-prep type. I find that if I prep very little for a session, I'm better able to savor that feeling of discovery and share in it. Also, if I'm running e.g. Barrowmaze or ASE then that GENERATOR lobe is free to get tone across. I noticed recently though that my freeing up of MY brain sometimes leaves players hanging because even if I'm coordinating the thing weird and wooly the way I like with eg Tablesmith, then the very nature of pseudorandom means it's likely a few people going to be bored. Generate 10 rooms. 8 have monsters. Some treasure. No traps. The thief is bored. Damage low. Irritable monsters. Cleric's bored. Etc.

I started recently to focus more on good stuff to build into games on top of the pseudorandom bones of it. So, fighters always going to get the opportunity to smash, intimidate, lift. Thieves to tinker and steal. MUs going to find weird artifacts, demons, etc. Clerics to persuade the ignorant and expand the influence of their God. Robots to hack and not feel emotions. I know who's probably going to make it thanks to FB so I know what I ought to present for them to have a crack at.

My way of thinking about this suggests that instead of generating A feature in e.g. Tablesmith, I ought to generate two or more features based on different classes, stats, or traits and mix it up so that it's not too repetitive in terms of who gets to play with it. Never one solution means nobody will be bored.

I guess these are sound design principles at the bottom i.e. Nothing new there. The important piece is to recognize the balance between shunting responsibility onto the machine system procedurally versus the need to keep players engaged by offering them a range of things to noodle with.

Maybe I'll tinker with the code later and devise some THERES ALSO THIS HERE charts

Maybe look into the 5-room dungeon thing since there's no way I'm able to get more rooms than that into a session

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

UNnatural Language Processing

I was reading about Natural Language Processing - i'm trying to learn how to noodle around with Python. Why? Well, I was going to use it to extract all sorts of cool words from the influences upon D&D, and create tables for Mythic GM Emulator. That's down the road, I think but I'm grokking the prinicples and it's not a bad way to learn.

I'm still mucking around with Python, but I did install it, read up on it, installed the Natural Language Toolkit, and a bunch of packages.

Meanwhile, I give you the 100 most common word-clusters/Noun-Phrases from all the prose stories that HPL wrote hisself. It looks like the most common non-stop words (that is, not included in the most frequently occuring English words) are: Time, Old, House, and Night. But Never and Strange are fairly close behind (time and old are far away more frequent). These were collected by software called KHCoder 3, and I got the corpus from GothicChic's pdf, converted to text. I will scrub the stopwords, maybe, but then all the fun stats change and you never know what you'll get that way.

old man
old ones
one night
mr. ward
great ones
great race
black stone
such things
first time
other gods
one thing
charles ward
dr. willett
terrible old man
old days
old house
young man
joseph curwen
other things
nameless city
other hand
one day
table of contents
next day
other side
strange things
young ward
ancient house
young men
great old
new england
old woman
one side
old town
old people
unknown kadath
old whateley
million years
old men
earth's gods
outside world
many years
old legends
many things
old folk
old world
cold waste
same time
old joseph curwen
black man
old sea
randolph carter
old tales
bearded man
dead city
last night
great abyss
one man
small hours
one place
sunset city
human world
old zadok
two years
ground floor
open space
old times
dead man
old bugs
stone floor
kind o
other times
human beings
certain things
the street
mrs. ward
old ephraim
old keziah
waking world
town street
other end
water street
great old ones
land city
outer world
new city
house of stone
aout o
white ship
great cthulhu
attic room
black abyss
one time
great deal
strange days
next morning
dark man
two men
other time
new york


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