A lot of posts on the network are about fluff vs. crunch or at least use those words a lot. Even I have used both fluff and crunch several times in this blog. There are people out there who think fluff is less important than crunch and when they buy a book that contains way more fluff than crunch they feel ripped off.
So, what are fluff and crunch anyway?
According to the Merriam-Webster dictonary, fluff is one of the following:
- down (soft feathers)
- something fluffy
- something inconsequential
- blunder; especially: an actor’s lapse of memory
- an act of crunching
- a sound made by crunching
- a tight or critical situation: as a: a critical point in the buildup of pressure between opposing elements : showdown b: a severe economic squeeze (as on credit) c: shortage <an energy crunch>
- a conditioning exercise performed from a supine position by raising and lowering the upper torso without reaching a sitting position
Kid #1: “Bam! Bam! You’re dead! I shot you!”Kid #2: “No, I am not, you missed me”Kid #1: “No, I shot you, so you have to lie down and stop moving!”Kid #2: “I won’t!”Kid #1: “You will!”
For a long time I couldn’t think of anything that could make someone think fluff is a waste of paper. But if you made your first steps into roleplaying from wargaming or you started with older edition of D&D this probably makes some sense. D&D core books are usually almost fully devoid of fluff and the rules were cleary evolved from wargaming. Early players and DMs were probably to create the fluffy part of gaming themselves.
More modern roleplaying games tend to be more light on the rules (less crunch) and there’s a lot of background and flavor texts (aka fluff). Just look at the White Wolf games. So it’s probably more a question of how you were introduced into the hobby when the like or dislike of fluff is concerned. What do you guys think? Am I completely off track? Is fluff something inconsequential after all? Please leave your comments below.