posted Wednesday, May 21st 2008 by
If I have one piece of advice to players, writers and dungeon masters this week, it’s this: Just because it’s fantasy, doesn’t mean it doesn’t have to be realistic. Third edition Dungeon Master’s Guide author Monte Cook terms this realism ‘verisimilitude’, the property of a setting being believable through internal consistency. It makes the game fair as well as improving atmosphere.
Fourth edition playtester and fellow blogger NiTessine agrees with me, posting recently to complain about a frustrating suggestion that peppers forum discussions about fantasy realism: “Thereâ€™s no point in arguing for realism when there are wizards lobbing fireballs.” He’s coined what he calls SÃ¤rkijÃ¤rvi’s Law:
“I therefore present SÃ¤rkijÃ¤rviâ€™s Law, in echo of Godwinâ€™s Law: As a discussion about realism in a fantasy setting grows longer, the probability of someone claiming the irrelevancy of realism in the presence of magic approaches one.”