34

I'm not immersed in RAW, but I've been watching and listening and talking to folks about it for a long time. I'd like to offer my understanding of Rules As Written, as a tool and as a tag, so that others with more experience can draw on it as they see fit. "Rules As Written" is a tool for understanding a game by looking at the game in a particular way. This ...


31

I have a modification to your proposal to make it compatible with how RAW works when it's functioning just fine. This answer isn't an endorsement of the plan. Treat it as an "if this goes ahead, do it like this." Be sensitive to the RAW tag's community during this Be sensitive to the requests of the people active in RAW here, like HeyICanChan and KRyan, ...


29

We Need To Bring This To A Conclusion I did not have a specific solution to propose during the last RAW debate and I said "sure, let's give it another try." But this has failed. The tag is still confusing and we have no super clear theory on how to use it correctly, so it causes edit wars, and has become a lightning rod for hostility and bad feelings when ...


27

Ask questions according to the playstyle of the people who are facing the challenge, and answer questions in ways that you in good faith believe will be useful to the querent. Some RPG systems are explicitly closed while others are explicitly open; most systems that I've encountered imply a stance but don't make it explicit. Naturally every group has the ...


26

Based on what Zachiel drafted up and Baskakov_Dmitriy's conclusions plus the What, exactly, is the RAW tag for? meta's answers, I suggest this as a possible tag warning: Questions about the rules as written are those which: Are investigating as a priority literal interpretations of the rules, even if it leads to absurd situations. Are not ...


24

This is incomplete I don’t have a suggestion for the tag wiki at this moment. That will take a little more time; right now I just have some ideas about what the wiki should and should not look like. But I wanted to get this out there and get feedback on some of these ideas. It’s not [rules] Merely asking a question about how the rules work does not mean ...


23

Citing rules is encouraged, BUT… Yes, citing sources is encouraged. Often, you'll see people linking to SRDs or citing page numbers in answers about rules questions. However, this isn't always possible or appropriate. Because questions on how to "correctly" play RPGs, or how to solve an RPG-related problem, are often subjective in a way that questions on ...


23

I agree with retiring the [rules-as-written] tag. Rules as written questions and answers on the site are fine and we as a community affirm they will always be welcome, but the tag sucks at its own job and it's always been an unclear meta-tag. On why it sucks at covering its own topic There's a broad range of questions people have about rules. There's also ...


22

I like this idea! However, I do share concerns over our history of comments that leave a sour taste in folks' mouths. I don't think it's an exaggeration to say this proposal may sink or swim on the basis of how approachable our clarification-requesting comments will be. Something I've noticed--and several folks have told me they experience it too--is that ...


22

Just answer RAW with RAW. Most games explicitly or implicitly don't constrain their GMs to the RAW. But when someone is asking a RAW question, they are wanting to engage just with the game text and not "what you would rule" - any question on the site that's not tagged RAW is answered with a mix of book rules and judgement calls. If you just answer that to ...


20

Burning the rules-as-written tag is extreme and would be damaging to the site; other, less drastic methods should be found to alleviate any problem behaviour arising from its over-broad use. Eliminating the rules-as-written tag would censor RAW questions de facto, though not de jure. The tag focuses the attention of appropriate experts who would otherwise ...


19

I think it is a good idea and I think it should read something like this: A Rules-as-written question does not simply ask about the rules of a game. It implies finding out the most literal (even if improbable) reading of what has been written in the game aids. By adding this tag, you're asking the answer to avoid speculation about authoral intent ...


18

No You are giving an edition specific example, Rules-as-written is system agnostic tag and should not be changed because one edition of D&D handles their rules canon in one particular way.


18

I think we should do that. rules-lawyering is just a specific sub-set of problem-player in the end, and the frequency that those questions show up don't justify having such a narrow tag. We have more questions that refer to, for instance, the maturity of people at the table than rules-lawyering per se, and we don't have a tag for player-maturity.


17

There isn't such a tag. 95% of what our site does is "official rules problems" and at that level it's not useful to have a tag. Several tags along the lines of "rules" or "mechanics" have been blacklisted for this reason. When to have the rules-as-written tag and when not is kind of fuzzy... but it's important to make sure it's not just "I am asking about ...


15

The [rules-as-written] tag fills the niche of expressing a specific configuration of a couple of dials that are present for questions about the rules. All rules questions non-negotiably require a rules answer, but askers tend to have preferences regarding: whether the rules should be followed literally (even when doing so gets weird), versus whether ...


15

OK, this is just patently absurd, and I cannot believe that this is what we have come to. I am just going to address the elephant in the room, because I believe that too much of this discussion has suffered for trying not to do so. The moderation team is not competent to perform the policing that they propose Two-thirds of the moderation team have an ...


14

Is it alright or just frowned upon to answer from a similar systems perspective to give more options? If the answer is applicable, yes. Answering a 4e question with something from Pathfinder often isn't applicable as the systems are not really related. Answering a Pathfinder thing with a 3.5 thing might be, but it's better to find the Pathfinder rule itself ...


14

It doesn’t have special rules. A question defines a topic. Answers are required to stay on that topic (or stray only after addressing the question on-topic). RAW questions are no different in this regard. The only reason that RAW is perceived to have special rules is because a lot of people want to ignore the topic of RAW questions, and post non-RAW ...


14

About other uses of tagging Beyond the inherent scoping and, well, tagging value of the tag, I am also confused by this claim: zero [value] from a searchability and SEO point of view clearly This is not clear to me. I don’t explicitly search for [rules-as-written] that often (though it has happened), but I have the tag favorited so that (if things were ...


14

Don't rename the tag during the study You say: With a lack of clear data on intended use being a major sticking point in the recent discussion on the rules-as-written tag, we’d like to make a proposal that should gather useful data on how often the tag is used for its intended purpose. So you want to find out how people respond to and use the RAW tag, ...


14

Extend the timeframe beyond 1 month I counted up the questions per month in the rules-as-written tag since it can be counted fairly quickly. (This doesn't cover tag removals and deletions but since I have no info on that, I'm ignoring them.) There were: 30 questions for January 2016 21 in December 2015 25 in November 31 in October 46 in September 39 in ...


14

People ask questions because they want answers. If we allow that the people asking the questions are experts in the things that they are asking about unless there's evidence otherwise, the number of situations in which "Rule 0", on its own, is a good answer to a question about the rules of a system is extremely small. If I ask "What are the rules for ...


14

@doppelgreener's answer is right, but it's worth saying that some things can't be described by tags. If you care what exact sources solutions come from, you just need to say that out loud in your question. Official first-party sourcebooks only? Any published book? Third-party PDF stuff? Unearthed Arcana included? That problem set is too complicated for a ...


13

I'm going to give an extreme answer, but I think it's the right one here. There's a more fundamental problem than what sources are valid as RAW in a given system. The problem is at least twofold. There is not a universal definition of what is and is not RAW. We see that in the differences between PF and 3.5, we can look at mxy's example with 4e and ...


13

No. We don't have the power to dictate how individuals or whole communities interpret a game, which is what you're asking us to do. Even if we did have the power, using it in this matter contradicts our tags policy: tagging reflects how the wider RPG community uses a term, not how we at RPG.SE might like the term to be used. To change the meaning of RAW in ...


13

It is underused for its category of questions This renders it less useful for searching or filtering (possibly not useful), which is a problem when one of the stated objectives of tags is to connect experts with questions (2nd sentence). It was created on June 20 2013, last year, following on from meta discussions about previous tags like rules-lawyering, ...


13

I would like to see evidence that the tag is misused. As far as I can tell, the entirety of the alleged problem with the tag is the idea that it is used by people who don’t know what it means and don’t intend it. Yet in every single one of these discussions, we only get vague comments alluding to this problem, without any evidence. The last time we really ...


13

The tag itself means nothing. Using the rules-as-written tag means and does nothing. It is just a tag. It exists solely to categorise and describe the question based on content already found in the question itself. It introduces no magical rules or restrictions and no new information, and implies nothing whatsoever not already found in the question text. ...


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