Nationality Feats!?!?!?!

Discuss Mongoose RPGs here, such as the OGL rulebooks, Jeremiah, Armageddon 2089 and Macho Women with Guns
KDLadage
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Postby KDLadage » Thu Nov 13, 2003 4:37 pm

hassanisabbah wrote:But I pretty much agree with KDLange
KDLange? Isn't that a singer?
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Postby Guest » Thu Nov 13, 2003 8:30 pm

k. d. lang (Kathryn Dawn) is the name of the singer to whom you must be refering. She is a Canadian androgyne who is openly lesbian. Some of you may recall that interesting issue of Vanity Fair with lang and Cindy Crawford.
Although she has won many awards for her music, including three Grammys, none of them were for her albums Drag or All You Can Eat.
Her biggest single, from her 1992 release Ingenue, is "Constant Craving", which was voted by Entertainment Weekly to be least likely song to appear in the soundtrack of the motion picture Alive.
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Postby JonAcheson » Thu Nov 13, 2003 10:51 pm

KDLadage wrote:2. Mongoose continues to publish Nationality Feats in the other racial books, ensuring that they are not restricted to Houses of Centauri, or Casts of Minbari, or Clans of Narn, or what-have-you -- but uses the same "suggested" or "relatively common" but by no means "exclusive" to the houses/casts/clans/whatever involved. After all, it was the Religious Cast that created the Whitestar -- not the Warrior Cast.
I think the national feats are even less of a good idea for the aliens, because in B5 the alien races simply don't have the same national variances as humans, and it's commented on. Humanity is unique that way.

Frankly, the various races of B5 aliens are really more like metaphors for different nationalities anyway.

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hassanisabbah
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Postby hassanisabbah » Fri Nov 14, 2003 4:44 pm

KDLadage wrote:
hassanisabbah wrote:But I pretty much agree with KDLange
KDLange? Isn't that a singer?
Sorry Fellar, wasn't concentrating - Nothing personal - yes, a famous folkie-rock lesbian singer - but very good :oops:
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finally some common ground has been established

Postby LoneStranger » Fri Nov 14, 2003 7:06 pm

KDLadage I'm glad you are finally able (or at least admitting) to seeing things from my point of view. However as to my last post I was doing what I could to emphasize the fact that since everything with the argument was out in the open, I wasn't trying to open another argument as to wether or not the stuff was actually said prompting the "it's important we're here, now how we got here" comment. Also you don't have to preface your posts with any type of disclaimer or whatever, but it would help if you clarified your point at the start.

As far as some of the other stuff, yeah I can see Mongoose putting up a .pdf file giving official sanction to the house rule that a lot of people are already using more as a CYA move than anything else. Also I can also support the same standard being used in all ther other fact books, that is the national/house/caste/whatever feats being strong guidelines unless it's a feat related to tolerance with the climate/region.

As for the comment about how the countries are portrayed, Armageddon: 2089 is a much more balanced and realistic view, they put a lot of effort into making the worldview there more accurate so if you got the money all you'd need is the main book there and work that into the country views for B5.

See KDLange.........err.......KDLadage I can be reasonable if you just talk to me :wink: :D
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Postby Guest » Thu Mar 18, 2004 9:20 pm

Hi there!

First time around here.

I too laughed my head off and finaly stopped crying when I looked at the regional feats and country descriptions.

Is it USA centric, probably much.

Is it simplistic? Probably so.

Is it insulting? I don't think so.

Morever it is 260 years in the future. I don't expect my country (Canada) to have remained the same. So maybe we planted all the trees back and have started back the lumber industry, since by then USA have probably stopped their embargo on canadian wood ; ) Just kidding George don't call the NSA yet.

Look I'm French Canadian (Quebecois) and I laughed really hard when I read that canadians had a french accent. The fact is that in 260 years, french is probably no longer spoken in North America and Canadians probably have a chinese accent. But then WHO CARES!!!! It's sci-fy not a deep sociological study based on historical facts. JMS even had Disney Planet! You'd think they'd learned after Euro Disney no?

What if I decided to play a hungarian charmer or a Koweitee outdoorsman? My GM wouldn't stop.

Anyhow most regional feats suck in B5, so why bother with them.

B5 is a great game. But nobody has to play it in ways they don't like. Keep what you like and chuck the rest out the airlock into hyperspace and be done with it.

My two creds.
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Postby Graknor Stev » Thu Mar 18, 2004 9:22 pm

Oops forgot to sign in.
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Postby Guest » Fri Mar 19, 2004 12:10 am

Neo wrote:The statement that these feats smack of racism is about the silliest thing I've ever heard... seriously dude take a chill pill. :lol:
exactly
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Postby Guest » Tue Mar 23, 2004 2:02 pm

See Neo, the chill pill answer is as infuriating as the flame wars some other people have started on this subject.

Banalizing the subject isn't the answer. There is a problem when authors write up stuff about people they don't understand.

I mean not all americans are crazy gun slinging cowboys, trout fishers, tycoons, rockstars or... muffin bakers. (I don't remember the national feats so I wrote up silly ones instead).

Just as not all Brits drink tea or all french drink wine and smoke.

I remember the GURPS Cthulhu Punk and Cyberworld. Man was that ever a bad piece of research. Of course Quebec seperates yet again from Canada but in this fantasy world... it absorbes the maritimes.
YEAH RIGHT as if Newfoundland would ever be annexed by us, we'd have to bloody invade them. They'd go with the USA or form a seperate state.

And the icing on the cake they called it the "Alliance Quebeçoise Nord Atlantique" there is never a freaking "cedile" under the "c" in Quebecoise, never.

I guess that in retrospect, the EA factbook isn't as bad as many other products. Badly researched, but that is just a small part of the book so let us do as we did for Matrix Revolution and forget it ever happened.

I tell you what, let's just glue those pages together and pretend there is a page numbering error in the book.

OK?
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Postby Neo » Tue Mar 23, 2004 3:50 pm

Anonymous wrote: Banalizing the subject isn't the answer. There is a problem when authors write up stuff about people they don't understand.
Except that that wasn't what I was doing, what I was trying to do however was to get you to calm down and look at what your saying, and about "what" your saying. Your reaction to the content of the book, protrays its content as being hugely offensive and significant to people and the fact of the matter is, is that it isn't at all.
I mean not all americans are crazy gun slinging cowboys, trout fishers, tycoons, rockstars or... muffin bakers. (I don't remember the national feats so I wrote up silly ones instead).
And noone is implying "ALL AMRERICANS" are anything, but the game would be fairly dull if they had to list 10,000 feats to represent every possible feasible facet or characteristic that may encompass an "actual" american or anyone else for that matter. For game purposes, taking some commonly if jokingly stereotypes and saying right well list a couple of things and thats can be the americans in Bab 5 isn't a sleight or even a remote facsimile of one, as the EA Sourcebook is about a make believe version of the earth nations, not "about" the real world americans, asians, europeans or proximans.
My goodness, they could have said all americans were corporate wage slaves of Mc Donalds, wore baseball caps and had thier jeans halfway down thier backsides while singing yanky doodle dandy... but it wouldn't have mattered because its not about "YOU" or any other "Real" american. Just as they could have totally re-written world history and said that WW2 was fought over a game of marbles.. it doesn't matter at all, and if they had should all participants of WW2 be offended and scream "But thats not right, that isnt what happened, it wasn't like that, WERE not like that"? course not, because it isnt about REAL people, or the REAL world or even REAL history :lol: Which is the single HUGELY important factor you seem to be missing in all this.

Heck, if it was an actual history text, written about the real world and real people, as opposed to a ficitional account, which can be protrayed anyway the author desires to represent "That" version of the universe they are writing about then i'd be up in arms about the misrepresentation of people and nations too, but it isn't.
Just as not all Brits drink tea or all french drink wine and smoke.
Well as a brit who does drink tea :) I can tell you I have absolutely no reaction to being stereotyped that way, not does it offend me..but hey thats me. And if the EAs sourcebook had provided national feats suggesting we all wore union jack underpants and indulged in football vioence it wouldn't have bothered me either... because again, the book isn't about me, or ACTUAL britains, its about the britain that exists in the Bab5 Universe, which can be anyway they wish to portray it or colour it. At the end of the day its JMS and Warner Bros who have the say in how things are, and are portrayed in thier universe and if they okay'ed the book for print, which they did.. then thats good enough for me.
I remember the GURPS Cthulhu Punk and Cyberworld. Man was that ever a bad piece of research. Of course Quebec seperates yet again from Canada but in this fantasy world... it absorbes the maritimes.
YEAH RIGHT as if Newfoundland would ever be annexed by us, we'd have to bloody invade them. They'd go with the USA or form a seperate state.
You see, there you go again "it wouldn't have happened" "As if..." these books aren't about whats plausible or would "really" happen. They are about whatever "alternate" version of events suit thier author. I mean the UK isn't going to be annexed by the New Reich of Genetically enhanced clone super soldiers, but if an RPG book comes out thats suggests it might and that Germany may herald a third world war, i'm not going to be screaming bloody hell, as the book is Fiction, as all RPG's are fiction. They may refer to names and places and events we know, but they do not have to be accurate. Heck RPG's are all about what ISN'T feasible, what ISN'T plausible... who the heck wants to play "REAL LIFE d20" not me thats for sure. RPG's are escapism, they give your imagination, creative and unique avenues to explore, they don't need to be bogged down with the plausible, the feasible and the actual. Save those concerns for when the game ends and people return to thier real lives.
And the icing on the cake they called it the "Alliance Quebeçoise Nord Atlantique" there is never a freaking "cedile" under the "c" in Quebecoise, never.
Does it matter? does it affect how you play the game? does it prevent you from playing the game? things like the above are so insginificantly unimportant in the scale of things. I don't know, perhaps itas just how i'm wired, but the above is obviously really significant to you, but i'm afraid to me something like wether there should be a cedile in Quebecoise or not is neither here nor there, and would likely only occupy my thoughts for no more thasn a couple of seconds and have absolutely no bearing on wether the book the mistake was in was then usable or feasible or suitable as a result.
I guess that in retrospect, the EA factbook isn't as bad as many other products. Badly researched, but that is just a small part of the book so let us do as we did for Matrix Revolution and forget it ever happened.
I'm glad you think it has some merit after all this :lol: I actually quite liked Revolutions myself, but then I went to see it without expectations about how it should be, which I suspect many probably didn't. I enjoyed it for what it was a couple of hours of escapism, with some nice effects and an interesting story. Would I have done it differently were I making it, almost certainly, but the trilogy wasn't my vision, it wasn't my job so why worry about it.

I think you'll find if you look for the positive as opposed to fixating on the negative, things in general will frequently appear much cheerier :D
I tell you what, let's just glue those pages together and pretend there is a page numbering error in the book.

OK?
If that is what you wish, but then if you hadn't wanted to talk about it then you should perhaps not have posted your opinions to an open forum, sleighting someones hard work. Work which in my opinion was very worthwhile.

peace
Last edited by Neo on Tue Mar 23, 2004 5:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Mongoose Si » Tue Mar 23, 2004 4:55 pm

Neo wrote:I think you'll find if you look for the positive as opposed to fixating on the negative, things in general will frequently appear much cheerier :D
Well said :)
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Postby hassanisabbah » Tue Mar 23, 2004 5:48 pm

Let Sleeping dogs lie :wink:
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Postby Guest » Tue Mar 23, 2004 6:07 pm

I get your drift Neo about all this being a game and a piece of fiction.

Still, I see these few pages as a blemish on an otherwise quite good supplement.

As for Cyberworld and all the errors it contained, well what can I say. The suspension of disbelief was ruined by their lack of effort into puting out a product of some quality.

I'll use an example from the UK to illustrate my example. It is a common misconception that the London Bridge is that big beautiful bridge you see on all the postcards. It's actually a plain concrete bridge, much similar to any bridge built in the last 40-50 years. In short nothing to write home about.
What if a book or movie used that same misconception? It would bug you.

Now mind you that detail (like national feats) shouldn't be enough to spoil your enjoyment of the rest of the product. Still one could offer a piece of criticism, just to make sure they wouldn't do it again, or at least be more careful in their work.

Just like the teleporting props one sees in some movies, the watch in Benhur, the Jeep in Maverick. It's not critical to my enjoyment of the movie, but if a movie is riddled with such mistakes, I will eventually get fed up.

Just as some posters don't bother to check their writing and lose all credibility in a forum, a product riddled with shortcomings gives me the impression that the creators cut too many corners and don't care about product quality.

All that being said, I believe Mongoose are doing a smashing job so far with B5 and I urge them to keep up the good work. As I said, regional feats are probably my only grudge about the 3 books my GM has allowed me to read so far.

WHile I believe in giving credit for all the good work they have done, I also believe that their mistakes should be pointed out as politely and constructively as possible.

I'll just stick to dismissing the regional feats, as I don't like any of them anyway.
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Postby Graknor Stev » Tue Mar 23, 2004 6:10 pm

Oh crap, forgot to sign in again.

I'm the guest who keeps poping up.

Sorry about that.
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Postby MrFilthyIke » Tue Mar 23, 2004 8:54 pm

don't worry Graknor, we all mess it up here on these boards. :)
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Postby redlaco » Tue Mar 23, 2004 9:55 pm

The fact is, Graknor, that the point has been debated to death a few weeks ago. The message has been received by Mongoose, super loud and clear. The author did apologize for any inconvenience and I think we should, as Hassan hinted, let that beast rest for a long long time, now.

Sleep well, thread.

Shhh, hush now.
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Postby Graknor Stev » Mon Mar 29, 2004 6:40 pm

Actually there is something that has always bugged me about regional or national feats in most RPG's, they usually don't apply to non-humans.

By that I mean that it always seems as if all non humans are the same.
In D&D all orcs speak the same language? WTF? These guys are CHAOTIC evil, they should very diverse in nature.

Mind you the Players' guide to Faerun has corrected this huge obersight and now has regional feats per race.

It seems that aside from the Mimbari, all alien races are homogenous (speak all the same language, have the same feats, etc). I mean there must be some ethnic groups among the Centauri, Narn, Drazi etc. Unless one assumes that though the milenia all ethnic groups have blended together, which would be a decent assumption for some of the alien races. For other more aggressive species, maybe one group became dominant and whiped out the other groups (I can imagine the Centauri or the Narn doing that).

But then again, maybe we'll get some answers to that in the upcoming factbooks...

Go back to sleep thread.

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Reves aux anges jo-o-oyeux...

Ok it's back to sleep now, change thread before it wakes up.
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Postby Guest » Mon Mar 29, 2004 7:15 pm

Graknor Stev wrote:Actually there is something that has always bugged me about regional or national feats in most RPG's, they usually don't apply to non-humans.

By that I mean that it always seems as if all non humans are the same.
In D&D all orcs speak the same language? WTF? These guys are CHAOTIC evil, they should very diverse in nature.

Mind you the Players' guide to Faerun has corrected this huge obersight and now has regional feats per race.

It seems that aside from the Mimbari, all alien races are homogenous (speak all the same language, have the same feats, etc). I mean there must be some ethnic groups among the Centauri, Narn, Drazi etc. Unless one assumes that though the milenia all ethnic groups have blended together, which would be a decent assumption for some of the alien races. For other more aggressive species, maybe one group became dominant and whiped out the other groups (I can imagine the Centauri or the Narn doing that).
You're right, but that's a general problem of Sci-Fi (less in Fantasy, it depends on the background world). Babylon 5, Star Trek or most other settings. It's the same with all major non-human powers: they are just to homogenous.
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Postby nitflegal » Mon Mar 29, 2004 7:39 pm

Anonymous wrote:
Graknor Stev wrote:Actually there is something that has always bugged me about regional or national feats in most RPG's, they usually don't apply to non-humans.

By that I mean that it always seems as if all non humans are the same.
In D&D all orcs speak the same language? WTF? These guys are CHAOTIC evil, they should very diverse in nature.

Mind you the Players' guide to Faerun has corrected this huge obersight and now has regional feats per race.

It seems that aside from the Mimbari, all alien races are homogenous (speak all the same language, have the same feats, etc). I mean there must be some ethnic groups among the Centauri, Narn, Drazi etc. Unless one assumes that though the milenia all ethnic groups have blended together, which would be a decent assumption for some of the alien races. For other more aggressive species, maybe one group became dominant and whiped out the other groups (I can imagine the Centauri or the Narn doing that).
You're right, but that's a general problem of Sci-Fi (less in Fantasy, it depends on the background world). Babylon 5, Star Trek or most other settings. It's the same with all major non-human powers: they are just to homogenous.
Yeah, what he said. The real problem, of course, is that it takes a huge amount of effort just to come up with the comprehensive attributes for a race. For a writer, there's usually just not the time to then take those races and divide them up into 10-30 different cultural sub-groups and flesh them out. It's a huge amount of work that most people won't care much about, so why take the time? It would be nice, but it's just not time or cost effective. Of course, that would probably make a great series of magazine articles, you could go on for years describing the main cultural sub-groups for just the Minbari, Narn, and Centauri.

Matt
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Postby CARTMAG » Mon Mar 29, 2004 7:40 pm

ok personaly I feel this topic has been talked about to DEATH... and enough is enough... I dbt Mongoose will ever do thoes feats ever again.... so cant people just let it rest already..... oO(ponders) (maby its time mongoose locked this thread)
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