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"The End of an Era..."

Sunwolfe

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It’s been a few months now since the “Old One’s Returned…” in early June and the only official mention of BRP or MW since has been in Ben Monroe’s tagline: “Chief Operations Officer, Magic World/BRP Guru, Earth Ro-Man”—I wonder if he’s even “Chief Operations Officer” now that the company is a web address? We forumites haven’t heard from him in sometime.

Since June, I’ve been hoping for some official shout out, even a small one, from Chaosium: “We’re keeping BRP, but (understandably) it is the lowest of our priorities…don’t worry though, we remember all our loyal fans…”. Save for brief flashes concerning Epsilon, Blood Tide and After the Vampire Wars, however,—works that were finished just prior or just after the return of Stafford—nadda. Oh, I realize I’m not on the inside; I don’t know the whole story, and if knew what was planned…I’d understand,but in lieu of a leg-up from Chaosium, here’s what I understand: Gloranthaphiles, Cuthulhuites and RQ6ese got news; BRPians and MWers got nothing.

Therefore, in light of that nothing: I’m gonna let this out and hopefully lance the boil, because it’s eating me alive, and, as it adds little to constructive conversation, I’m going to do it here on my blog where it can be easily identified as the negative rant of a mad man who can’t keep his angst to himself and ignored as childish petulance.

Despite “saving” the company, this whole thing has ultimately been a downer. I know Gloranthaphiles or Cuthulhuites are excited and they have a right to be. I, on the other hand, look at my BRP shelf with stuff that stretches back to the 80’s and wonder: what about my loyalty? If I add the investment up, I find I probably could have bought a used car! Yes, yes, I know that the loss of active BRP support doesn’t mean I can’t enjoy the titles I have, but, honestly, since the ‘rescue’, my RPG playing enthusiasm has ebbed. Even my Here’s-Barsoom-In-Your-Eye protest has run out of steam. I know it’s because of the disappointment I feel toward the company and its seeming choice to ignore BRP and that such anger is unreasonable. I mean, it even blows my mind that I’m reacting so emotionally, but I just can’t seem to set it and the feelings of abandonment aside. God, do I need therapy?!

What really gets me is that BRP loyalists, like me, are left to wonder and speculate in isolation. I mean, for God’s sake, there are some here who still actively hope for a MW Chronicler’s Companion! Chaosium, couldn’t you offer a mercy bullet…or even throw a we-will/can-no-longer-support-BRP/MW bone as a reward to those who remain(ed) loyal to the company for BRP sake? I would laugh if I wasn’t so frustrated. What the hell Chaosium?! Is the strategy to keep an oar in the water, so if financial tides turn, an announcement can be made that “The long wait is over BRP fans; we really never gave up on you!”? God, the whole driving-off-into-the-sunset spin just makes my blood boil! Far from romantic (the band is back together) or nostalgic (the end of an era), it smacks of an absentee father who suddenly returns home only to grab his things and leave again after some mumbled nonsense about how ‘I’ll always be your dad…’. Yeah, yeah, I know, completely necessary and expedient for Chaosium to survive and completely unreasonable and childish for me to crave.

Well, if that’s the case, I think it’s high time for me to grow up and lay this foolishness aside. If I must have an RPG system and a company to offer my loyalty to, there are plenty of them out there ready to take my money.

So…good riddins, dad…thanks for the tadpoles and don’t let the door hit you in the ass on the way out.

Now, I need to go meet with my therapist.



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Your frustration is understandable and even justified (IMO).

As one of those here who actively hope for the Chroniclers Companion I can say I was a bit depressed to see the "riding off into the sunset" posts as well. It even got me thinking, like you, about other systems. That and the stunning lack of viable news concerning the system I've been in a short term love affair with has me frustrated. It's like I found my soul mate and a couple months into the relationship I find out she's seeing someone who makes more money. (And has a squid face):)

"It's still early." I keep telling myself. "Restructuring an entire company takes time, much less absorbing and combining two."

But then, as I said above, the lack of ANY news has me wondering if my hopes are misplaced. I "hope" not...

 

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"It's still early." I keep telling myself. "Restructuring an entire company takes time, much less absorbing and combining two."

 

Restructuring an entire company takes time, yes, but how many employees does Chaosium/Moon Design have? It isn't like General Motors and Ford are merging.

I expect everything will turn out OK in the end and that our favourite games continue.

 

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Although I am one of those RQ6ers who is more or less secure that I'll have a system to keep playing in, I'm far from happy with the entire thing. I have been primarily a BGB devotee until this year, and all this is indeed sad news.

I seem to prefer the MRQ D100 SRD builds at present, but I don't like how the generic BRP rules could be going the way of the dinosaur.

One of the things that brought me back to BRP was that it had the BGB, a set of generic rules from which I could build my own genres from. It was not as nice looking as GURPS, yet it had much better rules with the percentile system. Perhaps the BGB could be reinvented with MRQ D100 SRD as the core perhaps (or perhaps this is blasphemy)... but either way I think it is a major step backwards if there are no generic rules in print - this is what attracts us to dabble and tinker with. Prepackaged settings are great, but there are many rules out there doing that. New consumers, the tinkerer types, will go for Savage Worlds, GURPS, Cypher and the like; not only due to their flashy covers, but also due to the fact that Chaosium appears unlikely to be publishing a generic ruleset as part of its strategic plan.

Very sad indeed. And even sadder is that for CoC and RQ to live, it seems that MW and BGB may have to die. 

Your analogies do strike a chord. You captured an intangible feeling that I suspect many of us are experiencing, and minimising with the real world around us ( of which all this will seem trivial). I suspect many of us are quietly feeling the pain

Of course all these games can live on at our gaming tables, but even that may feel hollow at times if the system has no current incarnation on the shelves.

We'll just have to keep hoping for the best, and see how all this pans out.

Thanks for the honesty in your blog Sunwolfe

Edited by Mankcam
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I think your rant is brilliant and beautiful, as sad as it is. I feel the same way, and you articulated it very well. I used to play DnD if I wanted fantasy, Star Wars d6 if I wanted Sci-Fi and Cthulhu if I wanted horror. When BGB came out I saw how I could make anything we wanted with those rules, all running like "old" cthulhu (our favorite game). We made worlds of Superheroes, space operas, modern day espionage, post apocalyptic. I told everyone BRP is the ONLY system you'll ever need. My uncle passed it on to me, I passed it on to my brother and dad, my brother passed it on to his kids, I got 3 generations playing BRP. When my dad thinks role playing, he's thinking BRP cause we never needed anything else. In the last 5 or 6 years I've bought more chaosium products than ever before, yes, I still got a lot of cthulhu stuff, but it was BRP supplements and monographs that got me excited and inspired. If we never see a BRP book again I could continue to play till I die and never really notice, I guess. But still it sucks. I have RQ6 but I prefer BRP. CoC7 is ok, I just really hate the x5 stats. See we have a lot of games where one character from one genre might show up in another world, and it was never a problem. Now how am I gonna take a 1920's character on a TARDIS ride and drop him off in the Southern Reaches. I'll have to do math, boo!

Anyway, now I'm rambling. But I feel your pain, I'm there with you, still waiting, still hoping.

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I'm still hopeful that the hints Rick Meintz has dropped here and there (mostly in obscure places it has to be said) about a compiled WoW will come to something. Everything now looks like a company trying every which way to reduce costs to stay in business. I hope one day things look up again and BRP gets another look in, but that's going to be a steep hill to climb. Even producing acceptable PDFs of old product takes time and money that the return might not justify, and PoD even more so.

Well, that means for now it's back to A:e for me, and Alephtar's upcoming Kickstarter ...

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Sunwolfe said: Since June, I’ve been hoping for some official shout out, even a small one, from Chaosium: “We’re keeping BRP, but (understandably) it is the lowest of our priorities…don’t worry though, we remember all our loyal fans…”.

At our Gencon 2015 news seminar, available as a podcast, and mentioned in several other people's podcasts, I mentioned what we basically intend to do with BRP. 

http://www.mu-podcast.com/whats-new-at-chaosium-panel-gencon-2015/

BRP starts getting asked about at 49:00 minutes in and again at 51:00. Up front I should clarify that you won't be hearing detailed plans for what we intend to do with BRP. What I found interesting though is that I used similar phrasing to what I quoted above.

Side note: we're going to have the BRP softcover big gold book for sale again soon on the Chaosium website, probably right around the end of the month. Also, please note that the BRP BGB remains in the new forum banner.

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Hello, Rick,

Thanks for the response and the link. I'm not a Cthulhu-ite or a Glorantha-phile and thus rarely frequent sites that cater to those interests. That, of course, doesn't excuse poor scholarship on my part--search engines defer neither to the Ancient Old Ones or to the Lunar Empire :-). At the time, I was wishing, very strongly, that something could be posted on Chaosium's blog or news page, or even here, about BRP/MW. Since my post above, things have changed on that front considerably...particularly with these forums becoming an official voice and ear for the new company--hence your post.

Keeping the BGB available and making sure its image appears on the new forum banner is appreciated. I noted it right away as I signed on and thought that was cool. You have high hopes for the new Chaosium, as well you should!--I can only imagine some of the brainstorming sessions you mover-and-shakers have had :-). BRP is changing, morphing into something not necessarily unfamiliar but definitely new and different...RQ6ish different. Please understand though, I had high hopes too--now that the company was in competent and creative hands (yours and the new crew)--that BGB BRP and MW would get the handling they deserved. I was anticipating a Chronicler's Companion and things similar to Wind on the Steppes but from Chaosium itself this time published with the benefit of a coherent vision and plan. I couldn't help but feel a little sad that this was (and is) not going to be. 

Regardless, thanks again for taking the time to post and reply with the grace and manners of a gentleman despite my harsh and emotional words in "The End of an Era...". Forum traffic has risen dramatically since your announcement. I hope it is a good sign for both the company and "...the tribe..." :-)

I wish both you and the company good luck and Godspeed.

Cheers!

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