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: “There’s no point in arguing for realism when there are wizards lobbing fireballs.” He’s coined what he calls Särkijärvi’s Law:
"I therefore present Särkijärvi’s Law, in echo of Godwin’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."
Palms law: The more time that is wasted in forum discussion, the higher is the probability that someone will come up with a quasi-relevant law named after him/herself.
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