Buildings


Archived topics from the different rule forums.

Moderator: Admin

User avatar

Town Member
Town Member

Posts: 817

Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2005 11:45 pm

Post Tue Jan 23, 2007 9:55 pm

Buildings

The issues that passwall creates made me think of similar problems with buildings. I can think of a few that happened at the May event last year, but are ongoing. It's nice to be able to have player-made buildings, but they can create a great deal of OOG problems as far as consistancy and realism is concerned. I missed out on the battle involving a building last game, so many of my questions/suggestions might have been answered there:

Murder/projectile holes that one person is able to utilize at a time seems appropriate, but things should also be able to be tossed back through them. These "slots" should be marked in some way to represent where they are so there isn't a migration. Maybe (This is going to sound a little silly) there should be raised hoops or something :) to represent where these holes are. If you can block something from coming through the hole or avoid it, great.

There shouldn't really be ramparts or raised roof fortifications, because there is no way to properly represent when someone is on top of them. For eample, someone down in the keep shouldn't technically be able to "see" what is going on in a tower or on top of something unless the main building has no roof itself, which would leave it exposed to things tossed over the walls. For example: Billy the Empath is throwing booms from the left tower while Gordon the healer is healing people down in the keep itself. Billy gets hit by an arrow and is knocked unconscious. Gordon shouldn't suddenly be able to get a "sixth sense" that Billy is bleeding to death and be able to run up to the tower to save Billy from bleeding out, but maybe Gordon was going to walk up there anyway to see how Billy was doing? :( If such fortifications are allowed, they should be at an additional cost to the structure and there should be rules allowed for "scaling" a wall.

My other issue with buildings: I notice how most buildings over the last couple years seem to have "translucent" walls and the people inside can see what's going on outside no matter where they are in the building. This shouldn't be possible unless there are big windows which offer further chance for someone to get through them from the outside. If someone is beating on a wall, it's likely people inside can "hear" this happening, but if someone is walking up or standing quietly near the building, it creates a situation where the people inside know he is there, even though they shouldn't be able to see him unless they have someone on sentry outside the building or standing facing a certain direction (since there is nothing on a building that should give someone 360 degree visibility, except for maybe a central tower). By the same token, people outside a stone building really probably shouldn't be able to hear every detail happening inside the building (although one could be cheesy and say the walls are full of holes), but even in that case, the people inside shouldn't know who is eavesdropping. In the case of wood buildings, I don't consider it unreasonable for people to hear what is going on, on the other side, since this is possible on real wooden buildings (like Palmer Lodge, for example). I'm thinking on this because of Mike's description about passwall creating a cheesy roleplaying situation where you know the person is there, but you don't know how you should react realistically in-character. I can't decide on a good suggestion to fix this, other than requiring buildings to have semi-solid walls (like curtains)but that doesn't take care of the other issues.

Doors should either be a great deal more vulnerable than the actual building itself and/or require a reasonable amount of time/people to open and close. A big, heavy door that takes X amount of time to knock down should take a proportionate amount of time/people to open and close. I have seen this abused quite a bit over the last couple years, where someone is able to access the building and quickly open and close a door the same way one would open and close an interior door in a modern house. I think this could be managed somehow for consistancy by requiring a count to open/close a door. Doors should also be properly marked, but I haven't seen a big problem with showing where doors are as I have with magical morphing arrow/magic slits.

Some suggestions may require more work, but I think they should (as part of the responsibility of having something in-game like that) and they would encourage players to come up with more clever phys-reps and add to the ascetics of the game.

I hope none of this sounded snide, I just think they are legitimate problems, especially now that more groups are starting to make buildings. I'm happy to hear any suggestions or current field rules anyone has. Also, with passwall gone, buildings have no "counter."
User avatar

GM

Posts: 4122

Joined: Thu Sep 11, 2003 3:49 pm

Location: Wouldn't you like to know

Post Wed Jan 24, 2007 10:48 am

Buildings need to be phys-repped appropriately. We have been a bit lacks about this lately because we didnt want people to spend a ton of money on building phys-reps when the new site has ACTUAL buildings and an ACTUAL fort that can be used to represent the in-game buildings. If phys-reps need to be made for buildings, however, I actually think there needs to be some sort of opaque material used for walls (Like painter's tarps or something). That would solve a good deal of the issues you bring up.

As far as rules for openning doors and such, all this is just too much to legislate with hard and fast rules. It really starts a bad trend. Five years from now I dont want to be making rules about how long it takes to wipe your bum.
Wayne O
The Game Master Lite
Frag the weak, Hurdle the dead!

GM

Posts: 1088

Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2003 7:44 pm

Post Wed Jan 24, 2007 11:10 am

Wayne has excellent point here

The new site does have watchtowers and a pallisade wall... for other buildings created by players there will be a need for phys reps in the future. Modular buiildings/tents are the easiest way to go, we can use painted canvas/broadcloth to simulate wood and stone for relatively low cost and weight. (We don't like invisible walls and doors either).
Master of witless lore and red herrings
User avatar

Town Member
Town Member

Posts: 1004

Joined: Thu May 04, 2006 6:25 am

Post Wed Jan 24, 2007 12:24 pm

At a minium, every building should have a tag on all four side telling people what it is. Also, every door should have a tag on it telling people it's stat's etc.. If does not have a tag, it does not exisit. I might not have the walls I want, but I make sure everything is tagged to avoid confusion and cheese.
User avatar

Town Member
Town Member

Posts: 817

Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2005 11:45 pm

Post Wed Jan 24, 2007 7:52 pm

I guess my main question then is how people should react to "seeing" someone on the other side of an invisible wall, since it's similar to the situation with passwall?

I hope no one thought I was insinuating anyone in particular, I've seen these minor (most of the time) problems where pretty much most structures are concerned, even ones that aren't PC owned.

I like the way the Order does the keep, with the tents along the outside of the perimeter to at least attempt an illusion of walls with a general "meeting" area in the middle. It's one of the few build structures I've seen up reliably, although maybe some of the other buildings were destroyed and I missed that?

I also don't know why any of this really matters, I doubt I'll ever really be involved with making a building anyway, I just think it's a really cool aspect of the game (PC built structures). I went too far with the windows suggestion, but I didn't get to see how this was handled at the last FH event. I love anything in a roleplaying game that adds customization and while I understand the need to have things uncomplicated, I just thought maybe the issue of the door would be something easy enough to resolve (And it's a far shot from saying you have to lay down rules for people wiping their bums in the future, hehe :P ). I also LIKE that the system isn't crazy; my brain doesn't have the processes to spare on a billion different rules.

How long does it take right now to knock down/force open a door? If it's the same as the rest of the building, why bother knocking down the door (which is probably better protected) as opposed to going for a back wall? Are doors the exact same for every building type?

I always thought for structures it would be cool to do walls like Trevor mentioned, with painted fabric or such to simulate walls. I toyed with the idea of making fabric covers for more modern tents, but there isn't really a good way to do it without ruining the waterproofing of the tent.

I did some sketches way back of how such a simulated walls structure could be laid out, but I run into a problem when trying to figure out what would be a reasonable support for such things. Pvc pipe would work ok if you could get it threaded (So it would be fairly modular and easy takeup/take down) although depending on the side of the structure, it would still take up a fair amount of space to move in vehicles (I want my station wagon back! *cries*). Also there is the joy of putting the canvas or whatever in your trunk wet...quite a few things that you can paint are probably going to soak up water pretty well too.

My big problem is what to use for base supports to hold it up. I thought about maybe coffee cans with cement in them, but that would REALLY suck to have to move around and might not be all that sturdy, especially if there is a lack of solid ground. Any suggestions here? I'm trying to eliminate cord pegs sticking out from the sides, because although I have a nice screen house that people seemed to enjoy, I was really worried about people clotheslining themselves on the cording so I marked them with plastic bags so they would show up in the dark. I hated how that worked.

I'm tempted to see how much one of those smaller wedding tents with the clear plastic vinyl "glass" windows would run, but I'm sure it would take up a lot of room to move, probably not really easy to tear up and down and for the price I'm sure I'd rather start putting that toward a more "real" period tent.
Mike: For the majority of you, choosing to use a packet instead of a weapon is a hindrance because your aims suck.

Travis: Crap he is on to me.
User avatar

GM

Posts: 7553

Joined: Thu Sep 11, 2003 1:43 pm

Post Wed Jan 24, 2007 10:52 pm

Well I hate inviso wall. IMO if you cant see the wall there is no wall, but I am mean that way.

There is just no way in the middle of the night I am going to replay an hour worth of scene because I didnt realize there was a building.

Pitch a tent.
Chris
I be one of the gamemasters so e-mail me questions if you have them
User avatar

Town Member
Town Member

Posts: 1004

Joined: Thu May 04, 2006 6:25 am

Post Thu Jan 25, 2007 6:35 am

As for doors there are rules on how long it takes to break them down based on how they are constructed and what it takes to destroy them. Walls have different rules and different equipment to break them down.

I agree people should phsrep building at a minium with a tent and tags. With out that, there should be no building. And please note all building that give protection need to be built in game at a resource cost.

Now going to extent of having proper in period building as such is to extrem. Many people do not have the money to make this happen, do not have the trialers and such to haul the equipment to and from the event, and the time to construct and break down the buildings. A happy medium needs to happen. Just ask Collin how long it took to make his cool in period building and how long it took to setup and break down.

GM

Posts: 1088

Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2003 7:44 pm

Post Thu Jan 25, 2007 9:13 am

Canvas and Muslin

for the previous question on cloth walls and how to stand them up.

Wayne has been testing this for a while, and we have been fairly successful.

A simple pvc frame actually works fairly well, and can be broken down quickly and transported in small chunks. The entire portal has no pieces longer than around 6 feet, even though it is ten feet tall and 12 feet long across the plinth.

For sqaure structures stretchy fabric is good because it helps hold the pvc in place. For simple walls, the cloth can be fixed to the pvc with gromets and snap ties, or even bungee cords (which you can re-use, unlike the snap ties). You can buy muslin and die or paint it for 1$ per yard, sometimes you can find it on sale at fabric outlets for 2yrds for 1$. At that price you can do a 10x10 section of wall for around 6$ in cloth, and the pvc and corners can cost you another 10-15$. So for 15-20$ you have a 10x10 chunk... if 4 people each bring one you have a 10x10 building painted to look like stone that you can set up anywhere, and colapses into a roll just about the size of a tent... you could also set them up as a 40' long wall protecting one side of your village... etc.

All and all this works pretty well.
Master of witless lore and red herrings
User avatar

GM

Posts: 4122

Joined: Thu Sep 11, 2003 3:49 pm

Location: Wouldn't you like to know

Post Thu Jan 25, 2007 10:36 am

The new cave design incorporates alot of the things Trevor talked about. I will have the fittings and a sample of the pipe at the event for everyone to see. To make a free standing structure that is 20' x 20' x 8' high out of 1" EMT (Metal) conduit and canvas would cost about $200 and pack up into a large military duffel bag.
Wayne O
The Game Master Lite
Frag the weak, Hurdle the dead!
User avatar

Town Member
Town Member

Posts: 2369

Joined: Thu Sep 11, 2003 9:32 am

Location: Michigan

Post Thu Jan 25, 2007 5:39 pm

I'm guessing you still need to sew the fabric?
My posts in no way reflect that of anyone else nor are they in any way official.
User avatar

GM

Posts: 4122

Joined: Thu Sep 11, 2003 3:49 pm

Location: Wouldn't you like to know

Post Thu Jan 25, 2007 11:19 pm

I found a source for cheap 8 oz cotton canvas painter's tarps already cut and hemmed to size. www.tarps.com
Wayne O
The Game Master Lite
Frag the weak, Hurdle the dead!
User avatar

Town Member
Town Member

Posts: 817

Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2005 11:45 pm

Post Fri Jan 26, 2007 5:07 am

Cool, yeah, I remember your gate, Wayne. That seemed pretty neat and if it really packed down nicely, it's something worth looking into. I'll have to check out that link.

Again, my big beef is with the invisi-walls. Even in the case of multiple tents grouped together, for example, although there are tents along most sides, there are still pretty generous openings where you can see what's going on. And most other phys-repped buildings I have seen in-game consist of screen-houses (Which have clear walls) because they tend to be less expensive than real tents which creates buildings with see-through walls.

I don't care if this is ok (Hey, it's there, after all), I just want to know what the preferred method roleplaying wise. Should I ignore what's going on outside if I can't hear what's going on (IE: Billy the bean-picker walking up the road)? Should I justify it by saying "Well, maybe I heard them walking around out there." (Even though I didn't, I just saw them moving since the light inside my building illuminates where there aren't any non-transparent walls).

Like if there is a black-cloaked ninja sneaking up to your building, but your walls are transparent, should you just pretend he isn't there, even though you can see him and you know he is coming to kill you? >.<
Mike: For the majority of you, choosing to use a packet instead of a weapon is a hindrance because your aims suck.

Travis: Crap he is on to me.
User avatar

Town Member
Town Member

Posts: 2369

Joined: Thu Sep 11, 2003 9:32 am

Location: Michigan

Post Fri Jan 26, 2007 8:25 am

ah, so you went grommets and ties I'm guessing? I was thinking dome tent style which would be more of a pita to deal with and set up.
My posts in no way reflect that of anyone else nor are they in any way official.
User avatar

GM

Posts: 4122

Joined: Thu Sep 11, 2003 3:49 pm

Location: Wouldn't you like to know

Post Fri Jan 26, 2007 9:42 am

The fittings are not threaded, they have a set screw. So what I was going to do was tie the tarps to the top with zip ties and grommets. Then I am planning on rotating the pipe a full turn to take up some of the tarp and cover the ties. Finally, set the set screws to lock it into place.
Wayne O
The Game Master Lite
Frag the weak, Hurdle the dead!
User avatar

Town Member
Town Member

Posts: 2369

Joined: Thu Sep 11, 2003 9:32 am

Location: Michigan

Post Fri Jan 26, 2007 12:08 pm

that works but I'd be worried the turned section might unroll (wind, people pushing on it, etc). This would just make it sag a little. If you went without the roll, it'd show the edge but you wouldn't have to worry about it not staying tight.
My posts in no way reflect that of anyone else nor are they in any way official.

Return to Rule Forum Archives

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests

cron
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group

Designed by ST Software for PTF.