Ten Years of Facebook Has Given The Gaming World....


Sure, Facebook has been around more than ten years. But it was around ten years ago that Facebook gaming chat groups became the dominant medium for gaming discussions (in my view).

I'll start with......


OP: "The best adventures come from the players' own paranoid conjecture. I'm such an edgelord I hardly ever prepare anything for my sessions, I just let my players give me ideas. Who's with me?"

Comment, or add your own "Ten years of Facebook has given... "

These don't all have to be negatives, by the way, feel free to point out the upsides. No need to confine yourself to Facebook either, other social media platforms are fair game.

Here's another:


OP: "Hey, Hivemind. I love building original worlds from scratch. I'm so unique, I never use prepublished settings. But I need some ideas for this new world I'm building. Hivemind, I need some inspiration. Anyone got some great ideas for me to use in my new original setting I'm creating? Go!"


I guess this is an upside. I've seen massive arguments over rules punctured and deflated by the author simply showing up and saying "When I wrote that, this is what I meant......"

Come on you 'greners, I know you're out there. Sooner or later someone will drop by.....

Though I guess that would happen on forums too, not exclusively social media.

Here is my impression of Facebook...

DEADLIEST TRAP. (Bragging about how hard your game is)

TRAPMASTER: I have a trap so deadly that I kill the players before I describe it. Has anyone else made a deadlier trap?

First commenter: Do you mean that you killed the characters? You aren't actually killing the players, right?

TRAPMASTER: No, they knew that the dungeon was dangerous. My NPC Evil McMoustache twirled his facial hair and explained that to them before they went.

Second commenter: I agree with TRAPMASTER, you can't let players just do what they want.

Third commenter: I built a trap deadlier than that. It caused a nuclear explosion. It killed all the players. Even the ones who missed the session.

First commenter: You killed your players too? With a nuclear weapon?

Third commenter: First commenter must be a weenie who never likes killing players. Soft DM's are no good.

Fourth commenter: Check out the video I made on this exact topic... "How to shoot people with fireworks"


Heh heh.


"You don't still make your players keep track of experience points do you Grandad? I use milestone levelling. Way easier and cooler. Complicated addition sums are so Grognard. How on Earth do you make sure everyone levels up at the same time?"


"We played a great D&D campaign last Summer."

I feel like a crotchety old meanie writing these I must admit :D

I don't really mind how people enjoy themselves, it's the bragging that brings out my instinct to tease.

I don't think anyone would take these posts as..."Hey, you guys are having fun wrong!" Rather, I get frustrated at people who make facile or one-dimensional observations and criticisms about a three-dimensional endeavour like gaming. In many cases, they don't have a large enough sample size across the gaming world to earn perspective. Even "veteran" gamers who have played with the same group for years have rather limited viewpoints. Like most of what gets bandied around on FB it has a kernel of truth when viewed from the right perspective, but lacks context, experience, and diligent critique. As such it comes off as entitled, dismissive, or dull, sometimes laughably so.

It seems to me that a lot of the problem with FB type interaction is that there is a tendency to make assumptions, and lack the "why"/"Y"?

"Why do you do 'X' to achieve 'Y'? NOT "Why do you do 'X'?"
"I dislike 'X' because of 'Y'. NOT "I dislike 'X'.

Use of the word "Pally" in place of "Paladin". What's wrong with Paladin? Pally sounds a bit ridiculous to my British ears.

So I shared this to Facebook...

When I first started playing D&D Charisma was the most likely "dump stat..." the least valued statistic on your character sheet. Over the years the game has changed so that Intelligence by many accounts is now the least valuable stat on your character sheet. Of the twelve basic character types, only one relies on intelligence.
As D&D's appeal has shifted from socially-awkward kids, to have a broader appeal, intelligence and strength were downgraded in value. Is there a message in this?

Among the comments I got this...

FB User : "Rofl, charisma the worst stat...lol, people really don't know shit about the old ways."

Me: can you explain why you think it was more powerful in earlier editions?

FB user: Reaction rolls? Henchman number? There's a LOT more than just combat stats in the early games for stats, i just pointed two..

Me:FB user and those outweigh making charisma the prime stat for four casting classes, adding charisma saving throws, and many char based skills? In a two hour session, how many times does charisma become part of the calculation in first vs 5th?

me: You can make a case, not one that I find very compelling, that 1st edition uses CHA more than 5th; but, to proclaim it self-evident to anyone who "knows shit about the old ways," is kinda dismissive.

FB user: Well, i understand that if you make the statistics only weighting the number of uses and rolls, there's totally no discussion to make. Keep going like this.

Me: you keep making sweeping dismissive statements. Make your case. I never suggested there is only one way of analyzing. I suggested one by asking you which stat is used more, the first or the 5th. That shouldn't cause a grown up to run into the corner. Suggest any metric that you find relevant. I'm not the one who proclaimed an answer obvious.

FB user: You spoke about two different things, passing from "more powerful" to "more used". This is enough to explain the problem

Me: [I am getting annoyed at this point... I can't seem to get at the basis of his opinion] Amplitude and frequency are two aspects of power. So, no it's not enough to explain the problem. I don't think you add anything to a discussion. You have completely failed to explain the basis of your position. Everyone else here seems to be able to state an opinion and list a reason. Were you meaning to be derisive by laughing at everyone who thinks that Charisma is more important/useful/powerful in later editions? You implied that holding that opinion means that they don't understand old-school gaming. Do you consider yourself a troll? If you don't consider yourself a troll, can you explain why Charisma was more powerful in 1st or 2nd? Henchmen existed in the follower feat in 3rd. Isn't a reaction roll similar to a persuasion check?

FB user: So..apparently you really don't know either the henchmen "rules" and the reaction roll, as you're asking about them, so i was right saying people don't know shit about old school gaming, based on your answer here and the ones from most of the comments here, and you are surprised that i laugh at the part of your post that is entirely made up by you as you don't really know the older editions?
Let me try with an example: is a pistol stronger than a shotgun, since you can fire the first 15 times and the second only 8?
Is a magic missile spell stronger than a fireball one sicne the first shoots out more projectiles?
Before making a statement, one should at least know what we are speaking about.

[I gave up at this point]
Me: Oh, Okay then.

Is it just me? Or were his comments banal and off-topic? He seemed to act as if his position was self evident.

Ah, "The Old Ways". AKA "My own personal experience of gaming back in the day which I am now going to insist is THE universally true experience for everyone who played back then."

I haven't touched 5e yet, but if this joker really thinks Charisma was a more significant determinant of followers / henchmen / cohorts etc in 1st edition than in 3rd edition, then his range of experience of both is far more limited than he thinks it is.

I'd put this down as a straightforward case of Dunning-Kruger syndrome. Or as Bertrand Russell (or perhaps more originally Oscar Wilde) put it, the trouble with the world is that the ignorant are cocksure while the intelligent are full of doubt.