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Explanations why if magic exists folks still live in "medieval" shitholes and why not everyone is a mage

>you have to be born with "the gift" to use magic
>magic is highly expensive, requires special resources
>magic is highly dangerous, if magic is cast unproperly it can instantly kill the caster or even destroy everything around
>there is no such a thing as "good" magic, magic comes only from demons so it's a heresy to use it, priests and paladins fight with it
>magic is considered as something not manly, mostly by barbaric tribes so people avoid using it to not being considered as wimps

Did I miss something?

What kind of explanation do you prefer?
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>>59159095
Rarity has always made the most sense to me.

Medieval stasis still doesn't make sense, by the by, as the existence of magic doesn't make a difference on whether technology will advance or not. The "middle ages" as we know them only were a few centuries long, and even within then there were significant, noticeable technology advancements.
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>>59159095
>magic requires years of study and some level of natural intelligence to even be able to conjure simple cantrips
Sort of the same reason everyone isn't a doctor
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>>59159095
>magic is highly expensive, requires special resources

Education was already a highly expensive thing back in the day.

https://www.quora.com/How-literate-would-the-majority-of-knights-have-been-in-the-High-Middle-Ages/answer/Stephen-Tempest?share=1&srid=OGYI

He is low balling how many people could read at 6%, but at the high end of guess work on literacy rates in medieval England put it at 13% I think.

A education in magic would likely be a thing that is only open to people able to read and write. For those people the way was already open for a large number of jobs, like being a priest, clerk, tax collector, lawyer, judge, etc with very little extra education. You could live a very comfortable life at that point and not have to deal with accidental melting your face off during practicing with magic.

That goes into a another area. In my head canon of D&D arcane magic is dangerous for beginners. PCs, even level 1 PCs, are past that point of course. Think of it like the fires and accident self poisoning that happen when learning the hands on part of high level (3000 and above course numbers) chemistry in college.
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>>59159095
>Magic is inherently limited in some capacity, either it is finite, or regenerates so slowly that it gets used up before any significant progress is made in it's study.

>The way magic works is so esoteric, random, and impossible to understand that no consistent formula for it's use can be made with any reliability, making study and progress impossible.
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>>59159095

Magic have been decaying in the world. The world has been irredeemably and corrupted. The world is in ruins and the few magic left is made of half-forgotten spells that barely work anymore.

This is the last age of magic before it fades away for all eternity.
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>>59159095

Your father must be an incubus.
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>>59159095
Also, >magic doesn’t do anything mundane, so you can’t conjure up a tortilla, you still need farmers.
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>>59159095

Magic is addictive like a drug. The more you use it the more you deteriorate.
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>>59159095
> The specific talents of each magic user are unique and non-reproducible.
> Magical power is based on detachment from the physical world. The more entangled you are, the less you can do.
> Magic is a privilege of ruling classes and serves as a foundation of their power. The lessers are forbidden to study it by design.
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>>59159095
I'd say magic itself is why they're in "medieval shithole". Why develop science if there's magic?
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>>59163715

Magic IS science, anon. Why do you insist in separating them?
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>>59159095

The God of Evil and his agents have steadily corrupted and taken over magic as the ages of the world have advanced.
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>>59163744
Not necessarily. If it's just something people perform innately or receive from beseeching otherworldly entities they might never bother to develop the scientific method (or not as quickly) because they can get power in other ways.
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Magic cannot be easily taught and can only be self-learned by a highly intelligent being. Each mage develops their own personal programming language of how to make magic work, two wizards who both write "fireball" into their spellbooks do so in a way that is completely unique to them, and neither could understand the other's spellbook at all. No magic schools exists
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>>59163807

Or the opposite as men of wisdom will seek to understand magic better, see it as inseparable from the mundane world, and use it to perform crazy experiments for science.
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Magick alters physics to do stuff, Technology uses physics to do stuff. Machinery operating around people using spells are performing nonsense actions — powerful spells will break weaker machines just by being used in the vicinity. Likewise, spells used around machinery are basically inserted into said machinery — powerful machines will cause weaker spells to fail just by operating in their vicinity.
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>>59159095
Well, my idea for it was pretty simple -

Our world today runs on high tech technology and software, so how come not every single person is a super programmer or a high grade scientist/inventor?
Well, to become one, you need education, so you need to be well off to afford it, have enough time for it, be in a place that allows you to get one and then have enough diligence to pursue it and not quit half way and then you need at least basic smarts for calculations and stuff like that.
And all that you need to become at least a middle of a road, average programmer or scientist,and then it's up to your talent, effort, experience and luck to carry you to anything great.

Same thing I applied to magic. Yeah, anyone can learn it, but not every one will have the ability/opportunity/intelligence/diligence to go through with it.
And even when they do, 70% of them will stop at a level that allows them to have a relatively steady and comfortable living, working in a alchemy shop, construction site or a factory.

That said I made my magic pretty limited, no opening holes into 3rd dimension and stuff like that,instead closer to FMA alchemy, but if it's not too OP I think this idea still should apply.
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>>59163744
Magic is usually unexplainable
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>>59165459

You can only have magic unexplainable and rare, or common and mundane.
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>>59159095
i go a 180 and everyone is a mage, but a shitty mage.
Say a farmer has a +33% greater crop because his love and toil make for a better harvest. Or a City Guard can make people speak the truth (wisdom save to lie) with a mean look. The Adjudicator that just comes on the scene of a argument and calms things down. Or the archer that can hit targets twice as far consistently, the lumberjack that can fell trees with 3 hits; you know, the regular stuff of legends shit.
Of course, people don't consider this magic because it's the normal, average thing in their world.
A soldier turned farmer will not enjoy a +33% bonus to crops until he's farmed 10 years and put his soul, sweat and blood into the land.

And within these "mages", those that can control the elements or do magical witch shit are rare because most of humanity's magical talents are spent on surviving; real mages are mutants.
Flinging fireballs isn't that important when your tribe has nothing to eat or when an enemy army falls upon you; the old farmer that's so magical he gets double crops on fallow land and the blacksmith that makes magical arms by skill alone are far, far more valuable for a society, and societies that nurture their producers become far stronger and conquer other societies.

And so magic usually chooses to be productive, subtle and benevolent rather than destructive, explosive and chaotic; less fireballs more farming.
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>>59159175

That's what I use. Just because magic is learnable doesn't mean everyone is a wizard in the same way not everyone is a doctor or scientist.

That said, given as they would have the sort of resources to devot their time to research and exploring ideas they would be the ones to push various innovations being the davincis of their day and such under the patronage of nobles and such
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The only reason people get to live as they do in medieval farms and villages is because of magic.

The only reason monsters aren't tearing you open a new asshole every night is because of magical warding spells that keep them away. The only reason crops grow with any regularity is because your local shaman did rituals over them to sanctify the land. The only reason you aren't getting picked apart by rotting disease maggots is because of the cures and potions made by your local sorcerer.

Magic users are constantly employed in villages and towns to make life easier. In a setting without ridiculously overpowered magic, it's easy to show that the people already live with it in their daily lives.
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>>59166057
>That's what I use. Just because magic is learnable doesn't mean everyone is a wizard in the same way not everyone is a doctor or scientist.

The comparison works to a point, but wizards are like doctors, scientists, engineers, soldiers, and whatever else you want, sometimes all rolled into one. Maybe not everyone would be a mage, but it would become as widespread as possible, if only because civilizations with more mages would push out civilizaitons with less, so you'd naturally trend toward having as many mages as possible.
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I go heavy on the requirements for success in magic, and make users appropriately rare. This also makes them paranoid, lonely, eccentric, and really dangerous.

You gotta be an INTfag. Never mind the literacy requirement, if you aren't at least 130IQ-tier, you will struggle to get even level 1 spells right consistently. Consistency is key, because you don't wanna be the guy who tries casting magic missile and suffers a debilitating stroke instead.

You also have to seek out existing (often from the time of the not-Romans) knowledge, or a willing teacher. Most mages are not looking to share their knowledge freely, and why should they? Humans are unique among the races in that they are reckless enough to want to militarize magic on a large scale, leading to the formation of the College of Magic.

Then you gotta develop your skills without attracting the wrong sort of attention. In all places in the setting, magic is feared. The difference lies in whether the peasants will avoid eye contact and give your tower a mile-wide berth, or drag you out of your bed and lynch you in the woods.

A smart enough person could try to work out magic on his own, but unless he's a genius he probably won't cast anything more impressive than a fireball in his lifetime. He's probably got no defense against anti-mage spells and paltry defenses against offensive magic in general.

Meanwhile a classically trained wizard will dimension door in, and immediately start casting spell thrust as his contingencies fire off stoneskin, haste and globe of invulnerability. A true master might never even leave his tower, sending out simulacrums or astral projections to interact with the world.
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This may or may not help but in my current game magic was restricted to cantrips only until the players showed up.

Some cosmic events that they are not aware of yet have taken place and thus magic has entered into the world.

The party is a group of monster hunters that specialize in hunting down creatures that normal fighting men are not trained for most of which come from European mythology think Beowulf.

The party was exposed to an ancient rune that allows them to use magic above level 0. Thus they are pretty much weapons of mass destruction.
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>>59159095
Also it can be a secret. When nobody likes mages, mages go to great lengths to conceal their spell casting.
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>>59159175
That doesn't make much sense though
If you look at a wizard in dnd, they have a far wider variety of things they can do than a doctor.
They're not the specialized profession a doctor is, their magic could allow them to work in many more fields of employment than a doctor.
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>>59159175
>>59166057
That explains why everyone isn't a mage, but NOT why everyone still lies in medieval squalor. It might be true that not everyone is a doctor, but in all the first world countries, everyone has access to the benefits of modern medicine.
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>>59159095
Same reason not everybody's a neurosurgeon or a rocket scientist. It's a tough skillset to master that requires long and expensive education to git gud. Bumfuck, Nowhere isn't going to have the network of actual mages that would be able to teach you, or the archives full of old arcane knowledge, or the markets that might sell rare and expensive materials needed to do some complicated wizardly shit, and stuff like that.

Sure, every once in a while King Decent McCoolguy might send a few mages around to build some useful magical shit or handle a local problem, but that's not something that happens too often for your average little hamlet.
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>>59159095
>Gods actively reset the world to some arbitrary point every few decades.
>It was all dream of God
>Magic doesn't create energy, the user has to burn the calories equal for every spell
>Magic is an abomination against the nature and the timeline actively undermines every change done via magic
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>>59159095
Its called the dark ages,the majority are illiterate and poor,ruled over by an elite who jelously guard their magic to retain their power
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>>59159095

If magic exists it's probably mostly in monastaries and equivalents in the middle of bumfuck nowhere that didn't get fucked by vikings or muslims and have mostly intact libraries. That dude can maybe do mid level spells on a good day.

Monastaries closer to civilization probably have a few light tricks and spend all day just making copies of minor spells since they're basically the only place you can get that shit.

A noble's court wizard or advisor may be on that level. Something available to lower nobility or knights and the general public will be lucky to get beyond the most basic spells and be prohibitivley expensive, rare, and resource heavy for most of them.

Like everything else in the middle ages the actual high level shit is half rotted in some roman ruins under a collapsed ceiling in a wrecked out villa in the middle of some sinkhole. The dude who owned it died hundreds of years ago and the guys who inherited it had no way of actually deciphering that shit.

The wizardly orders probably infight like knightly and monastic orders about who's style is sweetest and rarely actually trade documents or spells. Sometimes you get a reasonably good king who'll fund some magic stuff but then he dies and his son pawns that shit off to fund a war with some dude in a bathrobe 200 miles away.

Eventually printing technology gets good enough that every major city at last has someone good enough to magic up ice cubes or summon a few glowy lights, but by that point it's the renaissane and that shit doesn't count.
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>>59159095
Two reasons in my setting.
1) rarity: only a fraction of people have the ability to do magic, maybe one in a thousand, and most of those don’t get trained so they can’t do it. Among those who do get trained most aren’t too powerful. As a result of both of these there aren’t too many full, competent wizards floating around.
2) artificial scarcity; wizards know their skills and abilities are incredibly valuable, so they can charge whatever they want for their services, so they do. Very few people can afford their services so only those with money receive the benefits of magic. Some wizards basically give away their services for free, but they find that they can’t make a difference on the wide scale, and are typically ignored or derided by other wizards as foolish bleeding hearts. Those wizards that start trying to train large numbers of people to do magic are tracked down and ‘given a stern talking to’ by other wizards for threatening to upset the cushy little economy they have going.
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>>59170043
A neurosurgeon or rocket-scientist is far more limited in it's specialy than a wizard.
Not only that, but both rocket-scientists and neurosurgeons need expensive materials and equipment that unlike herbs don't simply grow off trees.

Imagine playing a wizard in an urban-fantasy game.
Now imagine playing a rocket-scientist or neurosurgeon in the same urban-fantasy game.
It should be obvious that rocket-scientists or neuro-surgeons would be far more rarely useful than a wizard.
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>>59159095
>What kind of explanation do you prefer?

"Magic" is really a complicated system of asking otherworldly deities for favors. It's rare because you have to know how to ask, and gets harder the more Their (Its?) attention is divided. So it's typically self-limiting, except every now and again some country bumpkin shithead conjures up a mountain of gold or a skeleton army and burns the place down to become king, so technological progress is a mite slow.

>What kind of explanation do you have to give?

"Look, you were the one who insisted on taking all this random shit from splatbooks. These mud farmer assholes don't have those spells or the half-dragon-half-demon-half-vampire-half-elf blood to cast them even if they did. Now you wanna be a middle manager, or you wanna be the king?"
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>>59165697
That's a nice way to swing it.
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I like the Warhammer method where magic just outright kills if overdosed, and eventually you do overdose because it is addictive and powertripping
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in my setting magic has a level of rarity but instead its a mana capacity issue. With high tier mana users being very rare. but the real reason its a medieval shithole is because magicians horde the power at academy cities and they hold the status quo. plus the magical elevators pods and towers of glass neeeed mana to function. that mana is collected from the air around these magical cities and its there because magic users "bleed" mana by casting spells inefficiently and by living, kinda like sweating. So in a large concentration this is a lot of mana that can be harnessed but not in bumfuck villages.

However in large cities these magical artifacts can be powered by the collective amount of mana from non mages. A non mage is someone that has insufficient mana to be a mage but still 'sweats' mana.

So in essense i made it a resource.
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>>59159095
>like technology, magic is not as advanced as it could be.
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>>59159095
Poor education systems
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>>59169332
>Everyone lives in MEDIEVAL squalor.
Medieval kingdoms wouldn't really be that concerned with providing expensive and useful services to their serfs.
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>>59166231

Exactly, for my purposes this is how I would treat it plus, there wouldn't be any medievel stasis because the ideas and research from said magic users would naturally advance the world in the way it will want to develop.

How long before you go from seeing a dude standing outside with a lance getting struck with lightning to figuring out the concept of electricity?
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>>59159095
You need an above average intelligence, the means to pay for an education, a tutor and the aspiration. Why isn't everyone a lawyer?
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They never developed better building materials because why make a building out of steel when you can just pay the town wizard a quarter of that to magically reinforce it? Why bother making cars when you can just slap down a big wall of portals to every town you need to trade with? Stuff like that.
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>>59165697
This is a fantastic idea. Though how would you implement it mechanically in a game? Just make it a perk that gives a passive bonus to a skill?
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>>59174445
Best gif (pronounced gif)
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>>59177360
>Why isn't everyone a lawyer?
Because not everyone wants to be a foul, blood-draining monster.

Oh, I get it now.
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>>59159095
>Magic drains life force - defiles the land around the user. Not going to be useful for innovation if you kill vegetation and age people.
>Magic is restrained by collective believability, and mundane thinking is the majority which limits it's power.
>Traditionalists/government/whatever make every effort to sabotage innovation to maintain the status quo.
>Contentment: No one advances because hell, magic makes things easy to do.
>Wars, a shit ton of wars, keeps civilization locked in military industrial complexes to the point where advances are only being made in warfare industries and nothing else.
>Magic has a high chance of killing someone trying to learn it - most people aren't willing to risk dying to learn it since only a fraction ever manage to succeed.
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>magic is incapable of long lasting change without intense commitment from the mage, meaning that at most any individual mage could create a handful of wonders lasting only as long as the caster does.

>magic inherently makes the user more inhuman, moving them in mind, body, and spirit away (they would say above) normal men. By the time they can do something about the problems of the world, they don't really care to anymore

>Magic is generally limited to illusion and trickery, save in the case of rare and potentially inhuman fringe cases.
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>>59159095

For a while my conundrum was that a bard or druid in 5e could hit level 5, and then basically retire from adventuring and just make long circuits around various farms casting Plant Growth as a ritual and make large amounts of gold that way. For a while I viewed that as a problem but one day I saw it as a solution: With food production doubled, people had more time to pursue their own interests so my setting has advanced to the Age of Sail pretty quickly and I've even got some farm areas are retardedly dependent on a druid to come around every year to help them grow food.
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>>59159095
For some reason magic is only able to release as much works as went into it.
A compression of effort if you will.
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>>59165697
That's what I do, with the added caveat that not only are more classical wizards aberrant they cause other people's Knacks to go haywire. They're pumping out huge amounts of distorted magical energy, or else sucking the area dry. That means they can do wonderful and awful things, but it ruins things for everyone else.
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>>59177924
>I've even got some farm areas are retardedly dependent on a druid to come around every year to help them grow food.
Forcing rapid plan growth, year after year seems a guaranteed way to kill your soil.
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>>59177924
lmao. Urbanites don't even know about crop rotation or that soil gets depleted. HAHAHAHAH >>59178018 this guy hit the nail on the head
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>>59159095
>mages are distrusted by the vast majority of the populace and aside from a few exceptions spend their time secluded and alone, pursuing their studies. Their gifts as well as the attitudes displayed to them has lead to a general disdain for the nonmagical denizens of the realms.
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>>59178018
>>59178060

Which is why I said they were retardedly dependent.
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>>59163517
Cool
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>>59163744
>magic IS science
>science is epic for teh wins!
>nerd power!

Ugh. I played fantasy so I wouldn't have to deal with this sci-fi crap. Let magic be a mystery.
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>>59178069
Or my favorite was when a DM made magic based on monk schools, meaning to be a mage you also had to be a monk, which meant it was very hard to play an unstable mage. This happened after our resident that guy threw a fit over us leaving him to die after our first two sessions were filled with him trying to alternatively charm or fireball every important plot NPC that got thrown at us.
He didn’t roll a mage ever again.
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>>59178170

So your DM really liked Avatar huh?
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>>59163715
Any sufficiently analyzed magic is indistinguishable from science.
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>>59159095
My explanation is basically a mix of a few of yours. Learning magic in a fantasy setting is like learning the rudiments of science in the middle ages - there is legitimately something there, but you're working through layers of astrology and superstition and mistranslation and misunderstanding to get at something even close to the truth. To learn magic you have to bury yourself neck-deep in philosophy and psuedo-science that is absolutely useless for everyday living. You become a wizard, you either love the learning or you want the wizarding, it's not something for people who aren't willing to dedicate a chunk of their lives to it.

Think about how hard it would be to dedicate that time. Even in early modern China with its exam system, most of the people who passed the first level of the exam basically become local teachers without any real power or authority beyond readying other kids to take the exam. It's something poor families would pin their hopes on, and a lot of kids just wouldn't pass.

And then you add on the fact that a lot of magic is just forbidden or lost, because an ancient war where a bunch of powerful magic users managed to fucking flip over an entire mountain and exterminate the dwarf Empire in one blow, and you can understand why not everyone gets involved in magic - users have to be watched, controlled, kept from fucking shit up as they please. Adventurers are the rare indepdent wizards - most are under the patronage of a noble or other powerful individual, or organize themselves into colleges and guilds for a measure of authority and self-regulation. This is dangerous stuff they're working with, and they're also jockeying with astrologers and alchemists and 'scientists' and the priesthood and everyone else who wants to be just as respected and feared as them. And then sometimes sorcerers come along and they just have a natural knack for it that drives most wizards crazy.
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>>59178116
you're an urbanite who clearly doesn't understand. even if a druid uses all their powers, plants cannot grow at all on depleted soil.
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>>59178544

Just use more magic duh that's why its called MAGIC

-t. Urbanite
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>>59159095
A mix of the first and second. Essentially, there's the Bloodline style of magic that developed longer ago, so all nobility is natural mages by extension, since kingdoms with magic nobility would thrive more.

While non-bloodline magic exists, it's much more difficult, and the magical nobility work to regulate it since they want to maintain their semi-monopoly. So even if you are a decent hedge mage, you'd get treated suspiciously if you start flaunting too much power.

Of course, magic. Giftrd by gods and demons exists a bit outside of this, since the nobles are fine with the major lawful churches, and demon magic is easier but far more likely to bite you in the end
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>>59178544
Which is why the druid uses his powers to make the impossible happen, duuuuh.
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In my system, magic requires a decent level of both intellect and spiritual attunement. Most people could learn simple spells, but it takes a while, and much longer still to master a spell well enough to use it multiple times without becoming spiritually exhausted, a state which is as debilitating as the ordinary kind. Most magic users are simple healers, often priests, with the second largest group being specialized soldiers, also mostly healers, but also some gimicky "battle mages". The third most common sort of magic user would be academic mages, working both for the sake of their science and to train the aformentioned soldiers. After that would probably be mercenaries and monster hunters, adding to their bags of tricks.
There are bone fide Wizards, with powers and abilities that defy typical understanding of human metaphysical limits, but they are exceedingly rare, and considered by most to not really be human at all.
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Anyone can be a mage, but you have to pass initiation. It can be whatever you want and even happen without your knowing. Like every person have "become wizard trigger" but only other wizzard may know what it is. Sometimes its totaly suicidal like "You become wizard after plummeting yourself into deep chasm from a cliff and realise you magic potential few meter above ground". Those who cant conjure slow fall "on the fly" usually die.
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>>59178060
There's 2 modes to plant growth.
The first is instant, and causes existing plants in a 100 foot radius to become overgrown.
The second takes 8 hours and enriches the land in a half-mile radius magically for one year. This makes fallow soil yield the normal amount of crops, and rich soil yield double.
Plus, if you're a druid, you could do stuff like move earth on half the land to keep it soft
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>>59159095
Generally, I go for one of two routes: Either the threat of supernatural creatures is enough to slow any progress magic might have brought, or the magic-wielding elite purposely maintain a peasantry system for their own financial gain
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How come not everyone is a scientist?
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>>59178813
hahaha, urbanites don't know shit about nature.
>>59178860
except druidic powers are based on nature. a druid couldn't make a giant redwood grow in the middle of the desert. gtfo urbanite
>>59179254
>urbanite logic
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>>59179464
It's not a skillset that is very useful in people's everyday lives, and while it's a good job, it's not so fantastically well paid that it can make all your dreams come true.
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>>59159095
I think the difficulty of acquiring magic is not illustrated well because the adventuring party is a group of highly trained and rare individuals. A human with the intelligence required to study and become a wizard is rare. Barring that, you have to be born with magic, also rare, or pledge yourself to a powerful entity which has it's own goals and will strip you of power if you stray from it's agenda. There's not enough magic around to boost society, only individuals.
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>>59176127
Not only that but the wealthy and powerful would likely have mages in their employ to rigidly enforce the status quo.
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>>59159095
Magic is primitive and naturalistic. It's used for divining rainy seasons, communicating with the dead and curing warts. There's few if any civilization building uses for it.
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>>59174964
thank
>>59177658
I don't honestly think about it much, I just put it into fluff and just give "classes" a fluff bonus like merchants can reroll haggle dice, farmers get a static +% to crop yield, etc.
It's also the fluff for "Swordmaster is so good with the sword that he gets +2 to every attack and damage roll" kinda deal; he's just an unaware caster.

>>59177995
This is a fantastic idea, loving it. Also gives way to "flashy magic bad and requires witch hunts, unflashy, folk remedies and prayers that work miracles good and encouraged".

Though battle wizards are a great boon to have... probably closed off inside some far away tower, waiting for the Empire to call them to arms.
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>>59179464
Because a scientist is a category of very specific and expensive specialties
Meanwhile, even in setting in whihc you're confined to a certain school of magic it's way more useful and versatile than being a bio-chemist or some shit.
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>>59163715
Well unless magic is filling in for all the ways people used knowledge to improved their lives (aka, technological development) people are still going to continuously find new and better mundane ways to do things. And if magic is filling in for those purposes then people will find new magical ways to do things. Either way being stuck in medieval shitholes for more than a few centuries makes no sense.
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>>59180903
A lot of fantasy has a cycle instead of a continous upward curve. Magic makes things better and better until everyone's living in flying cities and shit, then they blow themselves up, leaving behinds lots of ruins filled with magical treasure, and the next generation starts over from medieval shithole again.
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>>59159095
Magic bandwidth is controlled and locked down by the Magic FCC. If you access magical leylines without a license you'll spend the rest of the days as a mage slave.
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>>59163882
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>>59159095
I always imagined, in combination with not everyone having the ability for magic, that mages must learn how to do shit first, and that because of dangerous shit caused by uncontrolled magic ( kids not knowing what the fuck they're doing so they fireball all over the place and wonder why the fuck their wheat fields are on fire ), that people try to control it and prosecute whoever uses it "illegally".
Much like Dragon Age Origins, where these bitch ass templars hunt down rogue mages and imprison them in an ivory tower dubbed the mage's guild and slaughter niggas when they look at them wrong, while they pretend to be hard niggas and shit.
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>>59182317
Also that this would be directly linked to "why we can't have nice shit" because retards keep shadow bolting innocent shopkeepers by accident and said 7 year olds accidently burning a kingdom's entire supply of wheat.
Thus constantly draining resources to send bitch knights out to gulag these innocent retards who don't know what they're doing instead of only targeting irresponsible niggas and as a result causing a constant divide between the people over opinions.
Even though them 7 year olds have every right to cast recreational fireballs and reanimate recreational prostitute as long as they ain't violating the NAP. But it's faggots not knowing magic is a tool and just because they'd be retards and immediately think "HEY I COULD CAST BLACK PLAGUE ON AN ENTIRE SCHOOL IF I COULD INTO MAGE" and as such, this would cause many wars and conflicts with large economical disasters as a result.
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>>59159095

You forgot

>magic needs a lot of memorization and mental gymnastics to use complex formulas and rituals right.

The very same reason why not everyone is a PhD at something.
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Because /tg/ isn’t really capable of thinking outside of the DnD mindset which is why /wbg/ is the way it is. The number of people who want to write a setting greatly exceeds the number of those who are capable of it.
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>>59182827
A PhD in thermodynamics or someshit doesnt even have as many applications as telekinisis does, let alone the various other spells.
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>>59159175
>Sort of the same reason everyone isn't a doctor


More like, sort of the same reason not everyone learn programming
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>>59159095
If private jets exist, why does anyone drive cars and not aircraft

If human calculators exist, why would anyone use a computer and not just have a person do it
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Lethality, most wizards rely on dungeon diving to gather lost spell knowledge and they’re generally a rough sort as a result and deeply unwilling and paranoid about sharing their knowledge. (wizards who are of comparable power are cultured rivals, those of lower power are either seen as ignorant dabblers, promising juniors or robbery targets more often a combination of all three)
Higher level wizards generally frown on wizards working for secular authorities leaving mostly low-level dabblers in that position, if higher ones are involved in that at all they generally are the authority in question. (more often than not just robber-like extortionists demanding tribute across a major trade hub of multiple kingdoms or setting up a tower in the middle of a capital city and making barely-veiled threatening ”requests” of the rulers)
There’s a separate view of ”temple sorcerers” but they’re almost less well-liked by the authorities than the free ones since they’re explicitly allied to the temples.
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Because plot, GM doesn't want PCs and NPC wizards, warlocks etc changing the world too much because thinking up the results of such a world where wizards can call storms and end droughts would be too hard for a GM to do and would require creativity on part of a GM to roll with it.

Also let's say a mage with the power to call storms and end droughts or fix problems would mage the world boring and there would be nothing for PCs to do in a world without conflict, except say between powerful mages who rule opposing kingdoms.

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/ReedRichardsIsUseless
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Also a reason why GMs are supposed to stop PCs from changing the world too much even though a high powered human wizard could end all wars forever and subjugate all the kingdoms and empires in-universe and unite them all or end in-universe hunger or diseases.
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What people don't get is that the world of D&D is not like our world. There are literal demons, vampires, werewolves, vengeful gods etc that threaten the mortal world at all times. How tf are you supposed to progress technologically if you are a moment away from getting extra-planarly assfucked every waking second.
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Imagine an entire universe where mages end famine with magic, cure diseases with magic, imagine the work thinking up the results as to what would happen in such a word. Too much work and too much of a headache. Besides now there are no challenges anymore. Plus they could just mess up the fantasy economy of a game universe. Think about it if you have magical abilities why would you even want to go fight a dragon or some stupid threat two kingdoms over instead of using your magical abilities to get rich and laid or just overthrow the non-magical idiot ruling the lands and take it over yourself, proclaim yourself king.
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>>59179559
>literally the spell description is just "urbanite logic"
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>>59186367
You're a boring person and I hope you get a splinter in your dick
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>>59186425
>even though a high powered human wizard could end all wars forever and subjugate all the kingdoms and empires in-universe and unite them all
Or there could be a secret society of elite wizards who stand in the way of this. There has to be something powerful preventing it from happening.
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>>59186896
Yeah i'm a boring person because i question stuff too much, point stuff out and i'm not just willing to go along and not say well this thing is stupid. These also apply
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/LawOfConservationOfNormality
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/HoldingBackThePhlebotinum
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/RuleOfDrama
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/StatusQuoIsGod
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>>59159095
The world is kept in stasis to prevent an industrial revolution that would outstrip magical power.

Or

The world is a middle ages shithole because it's recovering from the last magical apocalypse.
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>>59187012
>posts tv tropes as an argument
>hurrr I ask kweschun I speshul
Alright anon. You're boring AND autistc. That better?
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>>59165697
This is cool and good, and closer to real world magical thinking/superstitious beliefs.
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>>59159095

Personally I want everyone to have access to magic. It just feels natural.

What I also want, however, is there to be clear powerlevels. Most people only knowing one spell or two, with only a few being worth shit.

Old MTG flavour put it best "everyone can sing a note, but only a few have the artistry to perform a song".
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>>59186987
The question is why does there have to be? why shouldn't PCs or powerful wizards change things? if a PC gets powerful enough to take on a wipe out said secret society of wizards. also it's kinda lazy plot device having them to stop the in-universe world changing
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>>59187039
I posted those links because of their relation to what i'm saying about rhetorical devices, motifs or cliches like "you all meet at a tavern" as to why the in-universe world cannot change, albeit in a meta way.
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>>59180781
Hey! I'm plenty useful
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>>59159095
Easy low impact option, use of magic leads to sterility and has a bunch of neurological issues. Older wizards are almost all suffering from paranoia or dementia. Litchdom isn't great given the apathy of the dead, while other options tend to be unable to manage the mental disorders.

Being a wizard is awesome, older wizards tend to be unable to give fucks. Litches are sure for some reason undeath was a good idea. Nations use wizards, but it is a pursuit for seventh sons with nothing to lose. Some nobles get into the craft in later life, but lack the time to really accomplish much.

Another fun options is excessive magic use weakens planer barriers. Atlantas likes that try to make magi tech get destroyed by demons/elementals/great old ones.
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>>59180967
It's hard to see that happening over and over again, forever, unless all the gods or equivalent beings are conspiring to keep shit in medieval shithole mode. Like how do ALL the cities fall at more or less the same time? And would the next empire the was built off looting the previous get just a bit more advanced since the have bits and pieces to work with and aren't starting from scratch?
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>>59186367
>citing tvtropes
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I think most of the reasons here make the case for why even learn magic anyway. If overusing magic takes a toll on the age or magic user or magic is addictive, then there's no real point even learning magic, and so if there's no real reason to learn magic why bother having magic? If there's an omnipotent council of mages to stop other magic users like PCs and NPCs from say overthrowing the status quo in-universe and act as a barrier to prevent change then it kind of makes magic and learning magic useless and devalues it's worth.
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>>59186987
Since if you do try those omnipotent mages will just come down on you and stop you from doing it then why aren't they the one's doing the missions instead of the PCs, why even have a PC mage.If these guys are supposed to act as a way to stop mage PCs say taking over the empire then doesn't that make the purpose of a mage PC irrelevant since what's the point if the elite wizards can just come and stop him from doing something the GM doesn't want them to do.
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>>59187531
>If overusing magic takes a toll on the age or magic user or magic is addictive, then there's no real point even learning magic, and so if there's no real reason to learn magic why bother having magic?
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>>59187531
Magic is for the desperate.
Extra sons, family has to many children so one is expected to inherit nothing. They get picked up as the apprentice of a hedge wizard/witch, knowing long term their prospects aren't great. Usually they would like to achieve some amount of wealth to buy a farm/governmental position. For similar reasons they become adventures, seeing the potential wealth it can bring.

Also, option for barbaric tribes is it is the given profession of the crippled. Lose your sight to a fever? Well I guess you better learn to chant, we aren't feeding you out of charity. Sure chances are you will be eaten by demons, but the other option is starving. Some groups might see it as noble self sacrifice, others the most brutal punishment.

Both of these options allow for all the evil wizards in the world. Vengence, desperate grabs for power, pacts with hell make a great deal of sense.
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>>59187119
See I agreed with the first line. Power levels tend to quickly just return to only a few actually having magic.
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>>59173657
>herbs that grow on trees

Scrying, one of the most important services a wizard could provide to a leader, involves a material component worth some 1,000 GP, which is like a brand new BMW or Escalade. Mid-level magic gets expensive. High level magic involves things like powdered gems and other rare things, which could rapidly bankrupt a small town just for a single use of True Resurrection or whatever
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>>59187800
Ok but then what happens when they realize well this isn't good i'm coughing up blood, and some weird shit, maybe i should quit using magic and just use a sword instead, because it isn't worth it. Sure yeah you'd get a few who would still use magic despite that but they wouldn't last long with the after effects. So if mages did exist who continued to use magic they'd be dead pretty soon. Plus those hedge wizards then would have to have also been recruited too as kids, so then where did it all start then? Someone had to train the first one that hen took an apprentice and so on and so forth to take up magic.

Same problem with the barbarian tribe idea, if the risk is being eaten by demons how many will actually take the chance? How long can they last before they get eaten, how any will decide to quit? How any cripples can there be who turn into wizards? Do they all get to become wizards or only a few out of the handful of crippled?
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>>59188169
Most of these settings, magic doesn't cause problems that quickly. Short term they feel fine, and hey they get basically free power/income. If you can't believe people are willing to do stuff for short term gain that will cripple them in the long term... holy shit do you not understand people.

Oh, most hedge wizards haven't cast a real spell in years. They teach apprentices, and get them to do almost all the actual casting. It is by far the most sustainable approach to using magic. Most of their aprentices want to get the same scheme going, but a lot of them die to random chance or leave to seek their fortune.

Depends on the setting, could be...
>God
>a god
>demons
>Spirits
>Some crazy that figured it out
>dragons
>elves
>effects of drugs, so people's habit of trying literally anything once.
>the earth speaking to her children
>Great Old Ones in the far distant past
Any of these work as an origin for magic.

If your choices are do something risky or starve, most people chose the risk. Also magic might provide inherent status, something they lost the chance at when they were crippled. People seek the blind seer's council, were children put rocks in the porage of a blind beggar. If they are lucky, nothing really bad comes of their magic. If they are less lucky, they get 5-10 years into being a magic user before pissing off a demon that eats them. If they are really unlucky, they start off by annoying some local spirit and burst into flame immediately. Hey, better odds then some jobs.

All of this really depends on the setting. I am just saying, you can have magic with drawbacks. People will still use it, just like people have done all sorts of things with a fair amount of risk.
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>>59188631
I didn't say they wouldn't do anything for power i even said hat there will be those that would continue using magic, but there will also be those that start to realize that using magic is messing them up and quit using it.
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>>59188692
Yes? Magic is rare. Most people realize it is a shitty deal long term. It can still exist in settings though, and if someone can brake the problems in their favor(see powerful dark wizards). Your average adventuring hedge wizard might just be living fast, or trying to find some solution.
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My main argument is this if you're gonna GM and build a world for players to run around in and it's filled with magic, you also have to be ready for what happens when players use that magic to change the in-game world. It also helps if as a GM you think ahead when worldbuilding and planning a campaign about the implications of magic in your campaign world so as to revert to things like the handwaving to explain things away or cliches and falling into using tropes. If you're going to have magic in your campaign make sure you think ahead of the problems created by magic.
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>>59187439
whats inherently bad about that?
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>>59188631
The biggest problem then with the whole crippled kids is if magic then exists then why can only the crippled kids do magic? If they get status why aren't some others trying to do the same? the problem again is that there is no other choice and that no one will ever say this is too much of a risk and i don't want to take it. Drawbacks don't mean there will be people who will decide it's not worth the risk, and if only a handful of people are left who decide it is worth the risk to die in 5-10 years then again, magic in the setting then becomes unimportant, save a handful of people who choose to use it and take the risk. Then everything else is basically mundane.
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>>59163517
I prefer this myself. Even better if it turns out that magic is actually technology and you're on far future earth that has no future.
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>>59184133
>implying learning programming is anything like the hell of medical school
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I always liked the "Magic has been so important and dangerous in the past that it is now controlled by a handful of capitalist elite and granted only to those who they groom to take their place." therefore restricting it only to a small handful of users who jealously guard the secrets of how it's done to help maintain their powerbase.
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>>59188929
That was an example of how there could exist a setting that had magic with drawbacks and people still used it. I made it up in about 5 minutes, and it is full of random holes because it is generic. Maybe only cripples use magic because it has a bunch of negative social implications. The blind seer might be respected, but he isn't marrying into a good family even if he could see. Don't you know children of magic users are soulless? Some other desperate people do it, and are treated similarly. It isn't super important to the culture, just the bastard of some one armed shaman is the caster in the party.
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>>59188840
Honest truth? Language barrier. I learned to discuss these sorts of things without a ready vocabulary provided by tvtropes, so to me making use of it comes off as weak, relying on the words and arguments of others instead of formulating your own judgements. I'd rather argue with a person than with a site.

I also feel like in attempting to categorize everything, tvtropes makes everything bland and banal instead of unique in its own context. I'm a bitter 'I hate everything that's been done to death' kind of person enough, going to tvtropes and seeing how everything's following the same basic formulas would kill me, or at least keep me from ever being open-minded and having fun again.
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>>59159095
>Magicians want to maintain their privileged status and so tightly control who is allowed to learn from them and who is not
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>>59178152
What about other way around?
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>>59189098
Exactly that's exactly my point, you made it up in 5 minutes and it's filled with random holes, while yes we were talking about how a magic system with drawbacks would still be used, though it also makes no allowances for anyone choosing to decide its simply not worth the risk and that those who do use magic do so because they have no choice otherwise and they cannot just decide it's not worth it and pursue other means, whatever it might be. But it demonstrates another point i made earlier about how it is important to bear in mind how magic might influence your campaign world. What are the problems with it in-game when implementing it.
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>>59189252
Not really, citing TV Tropes as an example of that trope in action on the topic of worldbuildng and how a fictional world works in the same way one would present examples in any other discussion/debate/argument. it's not really weak to cite examples or cite a source or reference. If we were talking about something and i gave you a reference to a site on the topic would you accuse me as being weak for saying 'here's a reference from this site" or "this guy put forward a really good point or made a really good example"?

To argue how going to a TV Tropes page that cites out something maybe because it points out how something may be cliched or formulaic or reference the use or existence of a trope may stop you from having fun again is less than open minded. TV Tropes doesn't really categorize everything but references the and gives examples of usage in various mediums like literature, comics etc. I don't personally agree that it makes things banal and bland but makes it interesting, it makes you more critical and it makes it a good idea to keep these in mind when you are working on something to avoid falling into cliches and tropes.
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>>59189252
To me TV Tropes is a reference a tool or more like a map showing traps to avoid.
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>>59189637
To weigh in on this as someone who wasted too much of his life getting a literature degree, TV Tropes is actually a piss-poor categorization system, burdened by an unintuitive and often inconsistent naming schema. Propp's Functions might not have hip meme names, but by god they're straightforward. Moreover, the site often fails to consider the role a given element plays in the larger work, or even overarching structure as a whole. Instead, it reduces analysis to meme bingo, where the goal is to say "I found the thing!" and then decide whether it's actually the thing, a subversion of the thing, or an inversion of the thing.

And don't get me started on the fact that a work's tropes are listed alphabetically, rather than sequentially. The use of this kind of structuralism would be to be able to map out a work by its elements and functions. Listing them alphabetically is like taking a company's financial spreadsheets and sorting the columns from smallest to largest.
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>>59189756
>Instead, it reduces analysis to meme bingo, where the goal is to say "I found the thing!" and then decide whether it's actually the thing, a subversion of the thing, or an inversion of the thing.
I don't know much, but I agree with this statement.
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>>59189828
>after session, discussing things with the rest of the group
>interested in possible hints I might have picked up that the recurring villain might not be so keen on where things are going right now
>clearly serving some higher evil
>talk about possibly redeeming him, thinking of maybe something like--
>OH YOU MEAN A HEEL FACE TURN
>resident troper starts listing off various anime and shows in which it occurs
>try to at least contain his autism with "Oh, I didn't realize you were into wrestling."
>he stares blankly
He didn't even know what the fucking term was from. God damn that conversation still pisses me off.
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>>59172850
Fat mage in a little robe
>>
Magic is another universe (like, with different physical constants) infiltrating our own. Exposure causes mental and physical deterioration of magic users if they aren't incredibly careful, but the laws of the system haven't been worked out yet. It's alchemy, not chemistry. Society hasn't yet produced the genius who systematizes magic into a formal discipline, but what it does have is a bunch of people who know enough to be dangerous constantly poisoning and exploding themselves and others on purpose or accidentally.
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>>59189756
I will ignore most of the first part since it mostly pedantic dealing with the naming of the tropes etc. The rest of the first paragraph i will address. The role is unimportant to the overall, the point of something say "You all meet in a tavern" is unimportant to the overall story but references the existence of that cliche within that story, you might take it as "I found the thing!" but i explains the cliche and cites it's usage in various mediums, again as a reference point. Making a analysis of the whole and where it fits in, significance and part it plays, but it does make a good reference point to explain an element. The rest lies with the person to figure how it fits in the larger work. Just because you notice it doesn't mean it's like you're going bingo!, found it. You can still recognize it exists or is overused.

While you do make a point about how it is listed alphabetically instead of sequentially to map elements and functions, it still delves back into the pedantic. I will however say this, i don't think its wrong to recognize a trope or cliche and it's function. How it fits and ones own judgement of something on how that trope as a reference is up to the person viewing/listening/reading the medium. it's not wrong to recognize it exists but it's also silly to say it doesn't or that we should simply ignore overused cliches and tropes to make something more enjoyable.
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>>59190237
>I will ignore any of the actual criticism of the website being discussed
Literally nobody was saying there's anything wrong with recognizing the existence of tropes and cliches, just that TV Tropes is a horrible way of handling them.
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>>59159095
>magic is useless against a guy with a gun
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>>59159095
>Explanations why if writing exists folks still live in medieval shitholes and why not everyone is a scribe
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>>59190427
I never said i will ignore the whole criticism just some of the more pedantic parts that are actually irrelevant like the naming of the tropes that don't really have any real merit.or how they are like a company spreadsheet. Instead addressing the main points being made.

Maybe but i like them as a reference point and explanation of the trope's usage.
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>>59190237
>"You all meet in a tavern" is unimportant to the overall story
No, it isn't. That's the opening context of the story, and is important as it establishes the initial expectations and constraints.

>"You all meet in a tavern."
>"You all meet in a prison cell."
>"You all wake up in a strange room you've never been in before."

All serve the same basic purpose--the initiation. The gathering of characters, usually without any prior interactions. Though I will say that the Dragonlance Chronicles trilogy has always tickled me over the fact that it starts with the party "all meeting in a tavern"--despite the fact that they have years of backstory together. However, the expectations created by the three are vastly different. And that is critical.

This is a function, which, in the context of a tabletop game, I would label as Element 0 - The Gathering. I would probably assign α to the traditional "in a tavern" style, where the PCs have no prior knowledge of one another, and then hopefully have some data to work off of in analyzing what other common variants exist.
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>>59190511
>Instead addressing the main points being made.
You aren't, though. The main points being made were entirely about the categorization structure and overall organization of the information. Nothing in that post says that you shouldn't recognize or use common elements. It's arguably saying the opposite--that they should be engaged with in a more thoughtful and analytical manner.
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>>59190511
>explanation of the trope's usage
That's actually one of my biggest gripes with the site. Reading the actual description of a trope usually requires having to click through to two, maybe three other tropes that are referenced in order to understand what the first one was about.
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>>59190537
i said the same thing abut how it's ok to recognize it but it's place in the overall work and analysis in the overall work is up to the person analyzing it.

I said i agreed with him about categorization structure and organization but i thought the comparison to a spreadsheet was not relevant to the point.
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>>59190524
What i meant by how the "you all meet in a tavern" not being important is as a small part of a whole that one cliche is to the overall story. it can open with a cliche and still be a good story even if it did open with a cliche. However if something is riddles with cliches, you all meet at a tavern.....you meet count _____, a dwarf with a Scottish accent, who sends you on a mission to find an kill a dragon in a cave in a far away land. The whole thing would be a series of cliches and overused tropes..that's not very good.
>>
It's also alright to say that yes that the "you meet in a tavern" is extremely cliched or the deus ex machina is a lazy plot device, it's not wrong to say that or point it out or call it out it's ok to point out that trope or cliche and critique it even if it was a good plot its alright to call out bad elements, bad tropes and cliches.
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>>59190736
>>59190822
TV Tropes doesn't distinguish between cliches and other tropes, so I'm not entirely sure what you're trying to argue here. Every repeated writing element gets repeated, and can be identified. Furthermore, a story constructed entirely of old story structures and cliches can be done extraordinarily well--see the original Star Wars, for instance.

Originality is not quality. In fact, originality often isn't very original, especially when it's driven by a desire to subvert a perceived cliche. Elves not being Tolkien elves is itself a cliche at this point, and we've all seen the threads about how "save the princess" type games have become such a rarity that they're now a novelty instead of a routine.

If you think that quality can be correlated to trope density, you're falling into more or less the same trap as people who think that simply mimicking a successful work will lead to quality. A poorly-written Lord of the Rings knock-off isn't bad because it's inspired by Tolkien, but because it's poorly-written. A competent DM can absolutely run a satisfying and memorable campaign that starts in a tavern, revolves around a McGuffin forged by dwarves who are literally voiced entirely in John Rhys-Davies lines, culminating in a showdown with an evil red dragon atop his pile of gold.
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I love LoTR but i do note some lazy plot devices in LoTR, same with Star Wars and that's ok, it's alright to call it out even though you thought the overall plot/story of something was good it's ok to call out a overused cliche. It doesn't have to ruin something entirely, but it is ok to acknowledge it as overused.
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>>59190919
>bad elements
>bad tropes
>bad cliches
And this shit right here is why TV Tropes is cancer. They're elements of a story. If they're used poorly, they're used poorly. If they're used well, they're used well. It's not as though the first time someone started a game in a tavern, everyone nodded and agreed "This is good this time, and will continue to be good for the next 49 times it occurs, after which point it will be an objectively bad choice to make for starting a game."

The problem lies in mimicry without understanding or context. Like an author who attempts to make up words because Tolkien did it, without understanding the actual linguistic work that went into the elvish languages, so he just mashes together random syllables. But an author who actually does care about linguistics and puts in the time and work to construct a language can produce consistent nomenclature that makes the world feel more cohesive and whole. In the first case, it's hard to remember the names and they just become a blur. In the second, readers and players start to be able to pick up on elements of the language from context, and the world flows more easily for them.

When you remove these writing elements from context, you strip away the capacity to actually learn from them. You reduce them to nothing more than a phrase or a meme. Looking at them from the perspective of their narrative function gives you a better understanding of what they are trying to do, whether a given example is using them well, and whether they are the appropriate choice for a given work.
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My argument is not that overuse of tropes and cliches like the macguffin, stereotypical dwarf or dragon with a pile of gold is to do with trope density or mimicry and quality of said imitation, but how overuse of something and plot devices, especially overused ones lead to it being unoriginal, contrived and lazy, that it degrades the quality and makes for poor writing.
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>>59184133
What happens if a madman delves into both spheres?
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>>59190969
'The reason that clichés become clichés is that they are the hammers and screwdrivers in the toolbox of communication.'

Frequency of usage doesn't degrade the quality of a writing element. If anything, it speaks to its utility. Poor usage can sour the taste, but that's the fault of the usage.
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>>59191124
Meant for >>59189001
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>>59191124
He probably fucks up and forgets to put in a colon somewhere.
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>>59190949
>TV Tropes doesn't distinguish between cliches and other tropes, so I'm not entirely sure what you're trying to argue here. Every repeated writing element gets repeated, and can be identified. Furthermore, a story constructed entirely of old story structures and cliches can be done extraordinarily well--see the original Star Wars, for instance.
nowhere did i say it cannot, it is possible to use some cliches like "you all meet in a tavern" and still have a good story, the problem is overuse that leads to bad storytelling.
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>>59190621
>it's place in the overall work and analysis in the overall work is up to the person analyzing it
Bullshit. If something marks the beginning of the Hero's Journey, it marks the beginning of the Hero's Journey.

Stories have structure. Structure has elements. Those elements can be defined and their functions enumerated.

"Ah, but this time it was a crazy Arabic man with a bunch of camels that provided unexpected assistance!"

Okay, sure, fine. That's still the basic helper function, in this case the bestowal of a magical steed. Its role and function in the overall work are straightforward, not a matter of opinion.
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>>59191175
Overuse doesn't lead to shit.

Bad storytelling leads to inappropriate and flawed implementation of elements that were successful elsewhere. Widely recognized success will lead to widespread mimicry. Mimicry by incompetent writers leads to bad storytelling that implements elements in inappropriate and flawed manners.

A shitty writer who is told "don't use these tropes" will write something without those tropes and it will still be shitty and uninspired. Bad storytelling is endemic to the writer, not the blocking.
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>>59191126
The problem is one of overuse if every campaign you had starts every single time with "you all meet in a tavern" how long before yo get bored of it? That is how cliche's are born, when something is overused it becomes a cliche.Frequency of use does degrade their quality, again like i said how many times can you start off in a tavern before it gets really old? Cliches are cliches for a reason because they're overused.
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>>59191190
What i meant is the place of the trope, it's significance in the overall work is determined by the person analyzing it whether it's good or bad depends on the person analyzing it.
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>>59191265
If it's a well-run campaign? Never. Why would I get bored of starting in a tavern if I know that it's going to lead to intrigue and adventure? What makes it somehow new and superior to be starting in a marketplace instead?

In fact, let's turn it around. If every campaign you play in begins in a new city with a name you can't pronounce, a new governmental style with which you aren't familiar, and a racial makeup that you tried to memorize before session, how long before you get tired of having to remember this new collection of syllables that's only relevant for one campaign? How long before you want something familiar and consistent?
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>>59191243
It does, someone writes something another person used it then someone else tries to replicate it and it becomes a cliche.Mimicry creates overuse that leads to the birth of a cliche. That can lead to bad storytelling when cliches are thrown in especially numerous cliches. That leads to bad writing. not necessarily all the time but if too many cliches as well as bad elements like the lazy deus ex machina leads to bad writing.
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>>59191313
>it's
Okay, first of all, your attempts at debating the finer points of literary construction are sorely undermined by your failure to grasp the difference between the the contraction "it's" and the possessive "its."

Secondly, and vastly more importantly, "significance in the overall work" has exactly fuck and all to do with "whether it's good or bad." I might think that a particular scene in a movie is beautifully done, the absolute pinnacle of cinematography, but that doesn't mean it has any significance or importance to the film as a whole. That's why a lot of scenes get cut from movies--they may be good, but they're not significant enough to keep.

Even if you don't like the fact that the BBEG (ugh) lives in the volcano of Darkbad Evillava, where he hopes to assemble the Eight Law Emeralds, those are significant parts of the story, and their significance is in no way impacted by your qualitative assessment.
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>>59191265
But can't you apply that to everything? Even the response to a cliche, if it becomes widespread enough, eventually becomes cliched.
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>>59191391
>then someone else tries to replicate it and it becomes a cliche
You're still not getting how this works. The repetition is not where the quality degradation occurs. It is where the opportunity exists, yes, but not where it occurs.

The problem is introduced when someone implements an element or function without understanding what made it successful in the original work and without thinking through its place in their own. It is not overuse, but overuse by unskilled authors. A skilled writer can set out to intentionally write a work that uses nothing but cliches and turn it into something masterful. Because the writer is skilled.

What you hate is not some natural process by which a plot element loses its allure, but the fact that people like things without being good at writing. It's a hipster mentality: "People liking this made it bad, so I'm going to prove that I'm not one of them by distancing myself from it." Trying to be different for the sake of being different doesn't introduce quality.

Only quality begets quality. If you want to be a better writer, you need to read good writing and analyze it. Read analyses. Understand what the author was doing and why. Throwing away tropes and plot elements simply because you've seen them written poorly doesn't actually teach you anything about writing WELL.

>>59191469
That's exactly why Pabst Blue Ribbon actively resisted marketing to hipsters. They knew that, if they did, it would lose the very element that drew that market in the first place.
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>>59169332
haven't you ever noticed how hot bitches are in fantasy worlds?

*magic*
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>>59172850
imagine losing weight by casting fireball

"i need to fit in this dress!" "good bye neighborhood, it is for my figure"
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>>59191069
The problem again is overuse, people can normally only deal with it so many times before it becomes overused, people with Aspergers however are a whole different story.

Not everything has to be detailed with a extremely detailed world with a detailed language like Tolkien or memorable names to be memorable or fun overall. Just internally consistent.

I agree the context for their usage matters, as does their narrative function but it does not mean they aren't overused and should never be above critique or calling out as such.
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>>59191442
First of all "it's" was autocorrect, i hit a wrong button and used the autocorrect and it gave me "its" and "it's" i accidentally hit it's and didn't notice as i finished typing the rest out, be as pedantic as you want about it.

The significance of the use of a cliche in the reception of the work and its place in the overall work is in the person reading and or critiquing it, varying on a individual level.
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>>59191565
And again you're conflating usage with quality. If you pay attention to the film industry, you'll realize that there are a hell of a lot of elements seeing a lot more use than anything you brand as "overused." But you don't notice them because they're used well. They're "familiar," or "just part of the genre." You only notice repetition and label it as "overused" when it is bastardized due to misunderstanding of the function and poor writing.

What matters to the quality of a work should never be how other authors have handled an element, but how the author in question has. Or else you say that quality depends on the order in which a reader encounters work. Should the first author to use a convention be labeled as an uninspired hack simply because the reader happened to encounter all his imitators before the original work?

>>59191647
>its place in the overall work is in the person reading and or critiquing it
That's the dumbest thing I've read all night, and you've certainly given it some competition. The place of a plot element in the overall work is determined by its role in the plot and the development of the themes. If a talking animal provides the hero with a magical sword that allows him to slay the villain, that is a plot occurrence that has a place and contributes to the climax. Its significance doesn't vary based on how many stories you've read recently featuring that species of animal.
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>>59191532
Whether of whether they understood it or not doesn't matter what matters is that they did replicate it, then someone else replicated it and so on and so forth becoming a cliche. It's not whether they understood it its their replication and someone replicating the other guy and someone else replicating the other person that makes it a cliche.

Replication over time is where the degradation occurs.

yes presume to know what i hate and that i'm a hipster. i didn't say to be different for the sake of being different but being different for the sake of creativity to do something new and creative.

No but it doesn't make a deus ex machina any ore lazy, the macguffin any more overused and doesn't make a cliche or over used trope, less cliched nor does it put it above criticism, nor should it ever be. It's perfectly fine to say that a deus ex machina is lazy or that the macguffin is overused. The author's intentions don't matter, the quality of the writing matters, the plot matter, characterizations etc those matter and on those a critique made. A good story will have all of those, regardless of the reasons the author gives for why they did that.
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>The astral realm is tainted, so using it to conjure large amounts of anything will probably result in some very bad things happening
>Magic doesn't like to be trapped, so enchanting large areas tends to go wrong
>Wizards are dicks

pick one
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>>59191865
And yet you ignore all the writing conventions, stock characters, and other standard elements that see even more use than the things you brand as "overused," simply because they haven't been ruined by bad writers.

Any element can be used well. Any element can be used poorly. The selection should be made based on what element is most appropriate for the situation at hand, not the fact that some other guy did this once and did it badly. Nor should it be the fact that some other guy did this once and did it well. It should be contained to the context of the work itself, not the work of others. Ignoring the appropriate choice simply because it's been used by others is bad writing. It is a case of making subpar choices for reasons that have nothing to do with the flow or needs of the story.

I also dispute your claim that avoiding tropes is somehow inherently more creative. If you take a paint-by-numbers book and declare "Wherever it says red, I shall instead put green!" you haven't actually done anything meaningful. You're still staying within the lines and coloring according to the numbers. So it is with cliches: By defining your choices with respect to specific cliches that you wish to avoid, you are shaping your work according to those cliches. You will come up with your ideas according to their categories, rather than having more creative reign with which to work.
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>>59191751
I'm not talking about plot elements but cliches in particular, regardless of how it's used it depends on the person receiving it, if i read a book that has some cliches in it i can decide whether i like that story or not as a result, whether that cliche mattered in the overall or not. That depends on the person reading it. while role in the plot and development of themes are important its not what i'm talking about. What i'm talking about is how a trope or cliche is received in it's role towards the overall work depends on the person reading it and whether they thought it mattered or not to them whether they liked it or not.
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>>59192047
Then you've literally never engaged with any of the points in the original post to which you were responding. Well done.
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>>59191751
Again, presume to tell me what i do and do not notice, thank you very much. Do not make observations for me, i can make my own, thank you and yes i have noticed them and i do note them when watching a movie.

That's a misconstruction of what i was saying. The element doesn't matter if it's overused it becomes a cliche, regardless of how it's used. If someone uses it then another after that it's still a cliche regardless of use, a story even a good one that starts with "you all meet in a tavern" even if it is a good one still doesn't make "you meet in a tavern" less of a cliche. It is still a cliche because it is overused.
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>>59192170
If you've noticed them, then you've surely noticed that all fiction, since the time of Homer, is more or less a collection of cliches. People repeat them because they are useful, and "overuse" only exists in the case of poor usage.

I have never claimed that usage makes something "less" of a cliche, merely that it is poor usage that makes it into one in the first place. And that is observable simply by perusing film and literature. Avoiding cliches simply because others have used them confers no seal of quality. It doesn't even truly convey creativity, as you're still writing with respect to the cliche.

What should be criticized and improved upon is poor writing. Not selection of plot elements, nor preference in elf skin tone or dwarven accent. Telling a lazy writer not to start in a tavern won't make them less lazy, it will just make them find a different option to be lazy with.
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>>59192028
Firstly, making presumptions. Secondly, context of the work doesn't make a cliche less of a cliche. Even if the rest of the writing is good, it's still an overused cliche.

That's a very simplistic way of putting what i said and completely out of the context of which i said it. Avoiding cliches and overused tropes and plot devices as part of lazy and bad writing is a good thing, to avoid them and to come up with a better way to deal with the plot so far leading to the end is actually better in terms of creativity and better in terms of quality than to stick to contrived plot devices and cliches. It takes more creativity too than to simply throw in a giant eagle and cop out.
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>>59192252
Where have you come up with this bizarre idea of making "a cliche less of a cliche"? You're the only one to have mentioned it. Cliches are a basic part of writing, they're just a part that rely heavily on execution precisely because they're so familiar.

If a cliche is the appropriate choice for a story, it is what should be used. Avoiding it simply to avoid it does no great service to the story, any more than using it simply to use it. After careful consideration of the options, the choice should be made. Is it a cliche to face the villain in one-on-one combat? Absolutely. It can still be the right choice in a story, especially given a number of different circumstances. Tunneling under the fortress and encountering never-before-mentioned slave ewoks and leading an uprising isn't necessarily a better choice, especially if the story thus far has been about a character struggling to understand honor and obligation. Is it a more inventive and less common solution? Yes. It's also completely inappropriate to the story being told.
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>>59192239
Not only in poor usage any usage since it has been done to death a million times before. it becomes easy to spot. A cliche is a cliche.

When something has been used so many times that you can spot it it becomes a cliche. The quality depends on the reader.

Selection of plot elements do contribute to poor writing. Telling them not to use lazy elements like the deus ex machina means they have to create more creative ways to get themselves out that corner they painted themselves into, which is a good thing. "it will just make them find a different option to be lazy with" which requires creativity.
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>>59192355
>When something has been used so many times that you can spot it it becomes a cliche.
Then, by definition, every conceivable trope and plot element is a cliche, and, by your arguments, something to be avoided. So we should...not have plots. Certainly a novel approach, I suppose.

And you still have the basic relation backwards. Poor writing ability leads to poor selection of elements. Saying "You can't start the campaign in a bar" is like telling a player "You can't play a human." Just like the player will play whatever race the exact same way that they would have played a human, the lazy writer will find a way to put in as little effort as possible. There is nothing special about starting in a bordello rather than a tavern. Nothing meaningful has been gained. The writer hasn't learned anything about actually improving. No creativity goes into the process of changing backdrops. Maybe five seconds on Google, tops.
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>>59192313
Because no one has ever critiques something for cliches nor has anyone ever said anything bad about something having too many cliches in them, besides Aspies they love that.

Not avoiding it for the sake of avoiding it, avoiding it for the sake of creativity and coming up with a possible better way so the story remains interesting. not the best example because it only states the possibility of two choices and no other possible optional choices that the character can take that achieves the same outcome that still shows the characters obligation and honor.
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>>59192430
...are you calling yourself a sperg?
I can't even keep track of the argument you two are having any more.
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>>59192430
If you're defining your writing decision in terms of avoiding the cliche, you've already collapsed it to two possibilities: use the cliche or do something else.

In some cases, the cliche is absolutely the right choice. Cliches become cliches for a reason: they're simple, useful, and often satisfying if executed properly. If you refuse to do something because it's the cliche, you're putting an artificial limit on your creativity. You are saying that, even if it is the correct choice, you will not make it. You are hobbling your own writing solely out of concern for what others have done, and not what you can do.
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>>59163715
someone said 'why tho?'
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>>59192400
So you took away me saying we should come up with new ways of getting around using cliches with equating me as saying we shouldn't have any plots? how did you ever get that?

Yeah e saying we should do something new instead of "you all meet in a tavern" with you cannot play a human character? Again how did you equate these two?

>the lazy writer will find a way to put in as little effort as possible. There is nothing special about starting in a bordello rather than a tavern. Nothing meaningful has been gained. The writer hasn't learned anything about actually improving. No creativity goes into the process of changing backdrops. Maybe five seconds on Google, tops.

So the lazy writer will have to create a new way to resolve it? You mean he'll have to be creative? In order to resolve it. No one said it had to be a bordello, not my words. I would argue your points say otherwise.
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>>59192454
No i said maybe an Aspie would enjoy the constantly familiar and repetitive.
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>>59192539
You said that any plot element used frequently enough to be identifiable becomes a cliche. By definition, anything considered a trope or common element is used frequently enough to be identifiable. If one should always avoid cliches, then one has to avoid doing anything that other works have done. That's not even remotely viable. Basic elements of narrative structure are common threads across works, and for good reason.

I fail to see how there isn't an equivalence between "Don't start in a tavern" and "Don't play a human character." Both are discouraging the addressee from the "cliche" option. And, in both cases, nothing really changes. The GM uses a different setting than a tavern, the player uses a different statblock than a human. Neither one will change how the scene or character is played. If you all meet on the docks, and the scene begins with someone dashing in to say that there's been a murder in the street, it's functionally identically to you all meeting in the tavern and the scene beginning with someone dashing in to say that there's been a murder in the street. There's nothing creative about that in the slightest.
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>>59192550
>nor has anyone ever said anything bad about something having too many cliches in them, besides Aspies they love that.
This is saying that Aspies love saying that something is bad for having too many cliches in it. That, or the other guy's right and you really need to learn to English.
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>>59192472
>In some cases, the cliche is absolutely the right choice. Cliches become cliches for a reason: they're simple, useful, and often satisfying if executed properly. If you refuse to do something because it's the cliche, you're putting an artificial limit on your creativity. You are saying that, even if it is the correct choice, you will not make it. You are hobbling your own writing solely out of concern for what others have done, and not what you can do.

Cliches are overused plot elements that become contrived from overusage. You see it as putting an artificial limit on my creativity i see it as pushing myself to be more creative by coming up with ways that avoid cliches and find a better way around them. You see it as hobbling my own writing, because of your presumption i'm doing it because of concern for what others have done and not for my own creativity or to push myself, test myself.
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>>59192539
>No one said it had to be a bordello, not my words.
I mean...yeah? So? You just said it had to not be a tavern. A bordello is a lazy, uncreative solution to "not in a tavern." If the point being argued is just that "banning X does not result in creativity," you have to show that it results in creativity. Not argue that he isn't being creative enough.
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>>59192602
If you weren't doing it out of concern for what others have done, then you wouldn't be defining your terms based on how often other people have done the thing. Basic logic, man.
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>>59192602
>become contrived from overusage
That doesn't even make sense. Whether or not something is contrived depends wholly on its context. Something completely original can also be completely contrived, while a cliche can be the most natural progression to follow.
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>>59192602
"Can I solve this problem that I created in a specific way that avoids these specific conditionals that I choose" isn't really a particularly valuable way of testing or developing writing skills, though. There are so many areas that are so much more important. Hell, I'd argue that it's more important to understand how to execute well on a cliche than how to avoid it altogether.
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>>59192550
>descending to ad hominem attacks on 4chan
Psh, what a cliche.
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>>59192578
Yeah, not using cliches and writing around them and coming up with other writing methods means getting rid of having a plot or story altogether, makes sense. That's what you're implying not me.

Maybe a false equivalence. So there can be no other possible way than " If you all meet on the docks, and the scene begins with someone dashing in to say that there's been a murder in the street, it's functionally identically to you all meeting in the tavern and the scene beginning with someone dashing in to say that there's been a murder in the street" those were the only two scenarios you could come up with? i bet no one could ever come up with something other scenario to those?
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>>59159095
Magic is simple to powerful, simple to obtain, and not particularly dangerous to the user. Most societies have taken the stance of condemning and punishing magic knowing this, because a bunch of peasants with books bares a real danger to the people in power.
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>>59192737
Actually argue why the two aren't equivalent, then. Both seem to be the stock lazy option. Explain the difference, don't simply assert it.

I'm not trying to come up with more scenarios because my goal is to be lazy, as >>59192604 said. You claimed that banning "You start in a tavern" would necessarily result in a more creative and original premise. But it doesn't. A lazy or poor GM won't suddenly find it in himself to speak with the players ahead of time and work it out so that they're all lodgers at the same residence, where the landlord serves a shared meal every Thursday night. A lazy GM won't suddenly decide to run a bunch of minor scenes before the game actually starts in which the characters meet and get to know each other. A lazy GM will do the laziest thing possible. And there's no creative value in what will result.
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>>59192604
Presuming bordello is the next logical step anyone would instantly make and not something else.

>>59192616
Partially on what they done only because of the prevalence, but mostly to test my own creativity.
>>59192685
Or to come up with a third option instead of resorting to using a cliche or overused plot device to resolve something. Because why do something that's difficult or more creative that requires more thought.
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>>59192798
So...are you going to show how banning taverns results in creativity, or simply be pissy that he found something else lazy to use?
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>>59192798
If you don't understand how difficult it can be to pull off a cliche well, that's because you've clearly never tried. Cliches can have a strong groan factor if you fail the execution. Managing to write the scenario such that the cliche seems natural, fluid, and satisfying can be a hell of a lot of work. Coming up with a third option is sometimes the laziest solution of all, especially given how easily that approach turns into asspull after asspull.
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>>59192798
No matter how many time you repeat the word, "creativity" does not equal "quality." Unicorns that shit sulfur and consume menstrual blood might be creative, but I'm not sure I'd really want to engage with the work in which they appear.
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>>59192795
Go to bed, anon. He's not going to see sense. You can argue this until the thread falls off the board, and he'll still be convinced that his autistic system of box-checking is the true definition of creativity.
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>>59192602
You really don't understand how creativity works, do you?
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>>59159095
There are tribes today that live in neolithic conditions pretty much.

Technological advancement is not guaranteed.

Magic would reinforce this stasis in gaming worlds. Magic is also Arcane aka Secret, Rare, Difficult, Feared and so on.

Technology vs Knowledge is different. Mages may know scientific or technological things but would not apply them as it would seem idiotic for them .

Things don't always progress to massively produced technological junk we have now. Used by billions of morons...
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>>59192931
>There are tribes today that live in neolithic conditions pretty much.
Fuck yes, the Sentinelese.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sentinelese

After a tsunami, India sent a helicopter to check on them and drop some food in case they needed it, and they came out with fucking bows and arrows to defeat the metal sky tyrant.
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>>59192843
Not necessary i think the idea of a third option to conflate it with being a deus ex machina rather than anything well constructed and work to resolve a situation.
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>>59192976
...am I reading this incorrectly again, or are you saying that you like your third options to be deus ex machinas?
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>>59193024
I don't even know, man. It certainly looks like he's saying he comes up with third options "rather than anything well constructed," but most of his posts are a mess.

Honestly, I don't think that plot development should really be his main concern when it comes to improving as a writer. Grammar, perhaps.
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>>59192822
Less ban and more avoid.
>>59192859
Agreed creativity doesn't always imply quality but a well constructed creative story is better than a well constructed contrived one.
>>59192795
You keep arguing what a lazy and poor G would do not what a creative G would do, so what would a creative GM do then?
>>59192899
No, why don't you explain how doing something formulaic over and over again is creative compared to doing something new or pushing yourself to not take the easy way but try to do better and come up with a better solution?
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>>59193024
Yes, Cathy Newman, that's exactly what i said. We should all be lobsters.
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>>59193062
>creative
>contrived
>antonyms in any sense
Some of the most "creative" things I've seen have also been the most contrived. I'd take something natural and familiar over something "creative" and stilted any day of the week.

Creativity does not mean quality. Something is not better simply because it is more creative. Now, a poor writer might produce something more derivative because they don't have any ideas of their own, but that's a symptom of them being a poor writer. A well-written work is equally good regardless of how inventive it is.
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>>59193078
Dude, it's not my fault that you can't speak the fucking language.
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>>59193062
>he doesn't understand that using familiar elements in a new way can require more creativity than reinventing the wheel for the tenth time
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>>59193062
>what would a creative GM do then?
Literally impossible to know without knowing what character concepts they've been given. It's not about what you are or aren't doing, it's about what makes sense given the parameters at the start of the game.

So, let's ask the internet: http://whothefuckismydndcharacter.com/

>bigoted Half-orc Paladin from a man made desert who has never been kissed
>old-fashioned Halfling Rogue from a orphanage workhouse who can't sleep indoors
>nosy Halfling Ranger from the dusty mountains who likes to settle arguments with headbutting contests

First, you work with the players to determine whether they're interested in knowing each other ahead of time. Random.org gives me three Heads when I flip, so apparently all three are good with being associates ahead of time.

We have a bigoted Half-Orc paladin and two halflings, so clearly his bigotry doesn't give him any problems with the halflings. One of them's from an orphanage, but they probably don't know that they're sisters. Not yet, anyway. The dusty mountains sound like they'd be next to the man-made desert, and the one from the city can't sleep indoors anyway, so...

>You've set up camp on the edge of the desert, near enough to the city for the old-fashioned rogue to sniff around for work, but not so close that the paladin gets in fights. The ranger is, as usual, unconscious after getting into an argument with the paladin over whose turn it was to cook dinner. Which, of course, meant that he had to make it anyway. As the moon rises higher in the sky, the rogue returns to camp with a worrying set of wanted posters in her hands. You haven't even done anything this time!
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>>59193098
Kind of ironic that people involved in tabletop games, especially RPGs are the ones that cling to the overtly familiar and utterly contrived instead of creativity.

I disagree a well written creative work is a lot better than a well written derivative story.
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>>59193192
I would argue that anything that can legitimately be labeled "derivative" isn't really well-written. Unless we're considering Tolkien "derivative" of the Nibelunglied and the like, in which case the word kind of loses all meaning.
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>>59193192
>utterly contrived
>instead of creativity
There's no "instead of" there. Something can be overtly familiar and not contrived in the least, and something can be completely new and still contrived in every fashion imaginable.
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>>59193192
Have you ever had a DM spring something "new and creative" on you? That's how you get shit like kender. Not all new ideas are good.
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>>59193062
Dude, just asspulling "some other way" instead of figuring out how the logical response would work IS the easy way out. It means not having to actually think.
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>>59193062
>>59193192
You seem to have somehow decided that "avoiding cliches solely for the sake of avoiding them is dumb" somehow translates to "every plot should be nothing but a string of randomly-chosen cliches, regardless of whether they make sense together, and that any original thought is forbidden."

Get your head out of your ass.
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>>59191143
Worse, he fucks up and forgets a spleen somewhere.
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>>59163744
>Magic is Science
That's wrong. Science is repeatable, stable and you can build upon it. Magic is unpredictable, wild and highly dangerous AND rare.




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