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deleriad

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deleriad last won the day on November 6 2015

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About deleriad

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  • RPG Biography
    Started with RQII back in 1982. Ran and played in Call of Cthulhu, Ringworld and Stormbringer. Have since run many campaigns in RQ3, DC Heroes/(MEGS as now is) & CoC. Currently running MRQ. Have played in Champions, Star Trek (FASA), V & V, Cthulhutech. Played D&D just twice in my life, Traveller once. <br />
    <br />
    Contributed to early issues of Dagon, Tales of the Reaching Moon and had an article printed in Heroes, right next to one by Jonathan Tweet.
  • Current games
    Mythras - a bit of Luther Akwright. The One Ring.
  • Location
    Edinburgh, UK
  • Blurb
    Blurbidy blubidy blurb.
  1. Official synonyms

    Vitality? Mojo? Well possibly not mojo.
  2. Quickstart/RQG: Movement

    There are quite a few things like that in the rulebook due to it being written back before the dawn of time. E.g. I'm pretty sure it never actually mentions how many times you can parry in a melee round.
  3. Quickstart/RQG: Movement

    As someone who was playing RQ2 first time around, there was never any question that HPs were deducted. I don't even remember seeing any house rules treating location HPs as thresholds. There have been various attempts at using locational hit points as thresholds since then. I suppose, technically there are now three variations: RQ - total Hit Points and Locational Hit Points BRP - Total Hit Points (and major wounds) only The "M" fork - Locational Hit Points only These days I tend to think that classic RQ with Locational hit points and total hit points is overkill. I prefer just one or the other.
  4. Glorantha Second Age

    I suppose there's a more general point that a lot, possibly most, of the first edition of Mongoose RQ were bad gaming products and riddled with Glorantha issues. Some like Blood of Orlanth were I reckon excellent gaming products but still pretty dodgy on the Glorantha front. However, speaking as someone who found the whole clans and cattle-raiding era of HQ profoundly uninteresting, the Glorantha second age material, for all its flaws, really reinvigorated Glorantha for me. I loved the drama and excitement in the era for all of the failings of the products. And maybe, sometimes, it's the flawed material that inspires the most creativity from a reader because it gives you room to rewrite. Ultimately, MRQ and Glorantha the second age provided me with a good 7 years of excellent gaming. I'm sure that almost any other games publisher with something approaching quality control would have provided better product but you play with what's in front of you. I can completely understand Chaosium's decision to focus RQG where they are; they're a small company and they need to ensure that they play to their strengths. Personally though I haven't been inspired by anything I've read yet.
  5. New RuneQuest Design Note (15)

    I suggest that this piece of text is just not a good idea. It confuses things and just opens the way for annoyance. Why mention Mongoose at all? Something more like the following is, IMHO, more useful to a wide range of potential readers. Comparisons to MRQ and other editions so on are better off in a FAQ for those who want to know such things. Especially calling it "earlier MRQ."
  6. Glorantha Second Age

    Two things to bear in mind. One is that they are all set in the second age and that Glorantha was essentially reset at the end of the second age so there is little, that can simply be plugged and played into the third age. To an extent, just how canonical they are is largely irrelevant. The second is that because of Mongoose's well-documented lack of anything approaching quality control you are at the mercy of random circumstance for any individual book. At their worst they are as bad as the Daughters of Darkness but in my opinion there are some real pearls in the mud. Robin Laws' Glorantha second age is in my opinion the best written Gloranthan overview published but is not much use for the third age. I suspect that the Glorantha source book for 13th Age will be more directly useful. The three Gloranthan campaigns - Blood of Orlanth, Pavis Rises, and Dara Happa Stirs - have hundreds of hours of rich, fun and playable material. The second two in particular have plenty of 'historical' information that could be useful and were written by Loz who knows Glorantha pretty well. When I ran Pavis Rises I had my PCs time-travel to the third age and doing the reverse could be a lot of fun. Of the Races books, Aldryami and Mostali are potentially useful. The Mostali book is *very* funny in places, taking Greg's off-hand article about why he hates dwarves and running with it. Both books have plenty of ideas you can mine. The region books aren't a lot of direct use. I happened to really love the Jrustela book; it was the first time the God Learners felt properly fleshed out to me. The HeroQuesting info has long since been superceded but the society and sense of doom is wonderful. Fronela is also full of great gaming seeds. With the exception of Pavis Rises, these are all for the first edition of Mongoose RQ so the rules stuff is, politely, garbage.
  7. Designing the new RuneQuest - part 12

    Really? In 2017. An intro to Runequest is definitely useful but I find it hard to believe that anyone in 2017 who is likely to be the least bit interested would need to be told what a roleplaying game is. I think the idea below, RuneQuest: Initiation is brilliant. A short focused introduction to what RQ is including runes and Glorantha makes perfect sense to me. The USP to new RQ is Glorantha and runes after all. RQ is not being marketed as an awesome new fantasy RPG system with which you can play in any setting it is being marketed as a return to Glorantha for a classic game. At this point there isn't really a BRP "system" as such. There are two closely related games, CoC 7 and RQ, but they pretty much differ in everything but the dice you roll. An intro to BRP makes no sense that I can see because you would be introducing people to a game that doesn't exist. Anyway, that's my 2c as an interested observer. Admittedly I'll be running Glorantha using my preferred system - Mythras - so I'm hoping that new RQ is a big success and generates loads of Gloranthan goodness for me to play with.
  8. What setting licence should Mythras get

    I think a fan-written collection stored in the downloads here would be good fun. Or at least a thread of them. The Goodies as valhalla agents would be quite awesome.
  9. Luther Arkrwright Campaign

    I can truthfully say that this is the most fun anthology I've ever been involved with. There's some seriously tripped-out stuff going on. In fact I just now saw one of the art pieces for Pete's scenario. Great stuff.
  10. Any news on the launch of the new RQ?

    That has been my experience. In as much as it is an issue it's one which Chaosium and Avalon Hill made worse. The starter scenario in RQ3 featured a duck and tree that grows money. In retrospect that looks more like Greg Stafford giving a big FU to Avalon Hill. Similarly the "Keep on the Borderlands" equivalent for RQ3 featured a Warner Bros style cartoon duck on the cover. By the time you've bought RQ3 and the recommended starting scenario, ducks are looking pretty central. Clearly Chaosium aren't going to be making the same mistake with RQ but there's now 30+ years of folk memory out there. If anyone knows next to nothing about RQ the next to nothing they're likely to know is that it's the game with ducks where everyone gets their arms chopped off. Personally, I love the strangeness of Glorantha. It makes it, oddly, more real to me. Bears with pumpkin heads, angry ducks, a hero with a pot on his head, baby giants floating down a river in cradles, occupying authorities making adventurers fill out forms to go adventuring. These all feel like the kinds of things that you wouldn't make up. For me it's fun and creative but I do think that a setting has to "earn" that right rather than just sticking a cartoon duck on the front of the first scenario a new player should buy.
  11. One of the things about the article and some other discussion at the time was that it mounted the best defence of armour being all or nothing (AC) versus armour reducing damage (AP) that I had read. In a more abstract system like D&D it actually makes sense. If you "miss" your attack by a few points (i.e. would have hit if you weren't wearing armour) then you can explain it as a blow that glances off your armour. Because your AC is a combination of parrying, dodging and armour protection then you can quite elegantly model high dex + low armour as the same AC as high armour. Something that is really hard to achieve in AP systems. In RQ2/3 you tended to have an arms race of magically enhanced damage vs magically enhanced armour which meant that Hit Points became almost meaningless.* Once you're doing something like 2D8+1D4+16 damage versus 20 points of magic and armour with 5 Hit Points in a location then an attack either didn't hurt or it killed you with little in between. As a game mechanic that was not exactly brilliant. One of the things I've liked about the Mythras line of development is that the damage vs armour arms race has been dealt with through imposing bounded values. From the previews of RQ new it looks like we're going back to it all being about the size of your plus, which I think is a shame. *RQ3 did have strengthening enchantments; something I utterly detested after spending my early gaming years claiming that D&D style increasing HPs were stupid beyond belief etc...
  12. Experience Systems

    To an extent which is why I did say that these things are, fundamentally, not as different as they seem. There are of course many types of Improvement point system but using Mythras as an example: Improvement Points are a limited resource vs BRP skill checks which are as close to an unlimited resource as you can get. (Limited by the number of skill rolls you get to make.) Improvement Points are generated at the end of a play session. Skill checks are generated during play There are no game constraints to what Improvement Points can be used on though there is an expectation that they will be spent in a way that is justified. Skill checks (house rules notwithstanding) can only be applied to skills successfully used in play and to which the GM has consented. Point 1 tends to lead to specialisation in IP systems versus generalisation in skill checks. Points 2 & 3 affect the interactions between players and GM during session. When all is said and done, skill checks are popular among BRP players because they're seen as a form of simulation. I actually think that RAW they're very poor as simulation hence the myriad of house rules that try to make the simulation more granular. I like Improvement points because they don't try to simulate. This allows people to say "my wizard has been reading the scrolls of Megadeathmage while we're travelling so he spends his improvement points on wizardy things. Yes he may have whacked the burning goblin with his quarterstaff at one point but the main thing he learned from that was to stay further away from burning goblins."
  13. Experience Systems

    I agree. For me the point of an Improvement Point system is that it doesn't try to simulate. Whenever IPs are handed out, players spend them (ideally) in whatever way seems to be appropriate. My preferred way of doing this is that when they're handed out each player briefly explains to the table what they're assigning them to. If something seems a little odd then an explanation justifying it is called for. I would argue that's just an Improvement Point system in disguise. It's often claimed that a skill check system negates the need for GMs to have to "reward" people for role-playing. To be fair, I think this simply shows that in actual use there is probably more of a blurred overlap than a hard and fast boundary. Personally how I like to handle improvement through experience (using Mythras) is: "OK, everyone gets 3 experience rolls plus your experience modifier. You can also all have a free experience roll in the Drow language." I then like to ask everyone what they're spending them on. It means the whole table gets a short little session and often players will suggest things to each other.
  14. Experience Systems

    There are two main reasons that I have gradually come not to like the skill check system: simulation and game play. Growing up, I used to love Walls ice-cream. Then I discovered haagen dazs. Now, if someone buys me Walls I'll eat it to be polite but I wouldn't buy it for myself. That's where I am at with the skill check system. Failures of simulation are plentiful but to name a few: no ability to learn from failure, no ability to learn from repeated success; quality of success is irrelevant; context of success is irrelevant; type of skill is irrelevant; no ability to learn from observation ("ah that's how you do it"). I won't belabour the point with repeated examples and yes I do realise that you can house rule all sorts of granularity into the system in order to increase the number of things it can simulate. In terms of game play I also have severe reservations. Most fundamentally it tends to lead to regression to the mean. Over time most PCs end up with a fairly similar skill set. They become generalists as their pace of improvement in their best skills slows down and the other PCs catch up. It is also in tension with one of the key passages of every BRP rule book ever written: don't call for skill rolls except in key moments. PC progression is related to the number of skill rolls they get per session thus they're incentivized to do something (spamming skill rolls) that goes against the game. This is different to but related to secondary skill check hunting and POW gain through using Disruption several times until you get a POW gain check. Both of these last two interfere in game play because the game has to stop while the player checks whether the skill qualifies for a check. Finally, it means that as a GM you either have to keep an eye on ensuring that a wide-range of skill rolls will be called for each session or start having players complaining that they're not getting a chance to use their favourite/key skills. An improvement point system puts all that stuff in a box and gets it out of the way during play. Everyone focuses on the session rather than having to keep an eye on which skills they're using. In terms of character development, it does incentivise skill specialisation rather than generalisation due to Improvement Points being a limited resource but I regard that as a feature rather than a bug. Now downtime/training is, unlike skill checks during play, a limited resource. So skill checks + training should lead to a balance of generalisation + specialisation but most BRP systems have put a ceiling on training so that you can't increase above a certain value. There are some things you lose when using improvement rolls. It is *fun* as a player to check a box for later and as @RosenMcStern once said you tend to generate a little organic history from those weird skill rolls you made once in a scenario long ago.
  15. New design notes - Sorcery!

    Hey! the tl;dr is a summary of my argument. i.e. if you don't want to read my long-winded explanation of why I didn't like what I was reading then here's my summary. I believe I have a pretty good understanding of what has been presented of the new system. Free INT is the cap on the number of MPs you can put in a spell; spell's strength is based on number of MPs. I happen not to like that model. It divorces effect of spell from skill of user. It treats magic as a machine gun with MPs as ammo. As long as you point it in the right direction you're ok. I prefer effect to scale with skill. However, appearances notwithstanding, I don't actually expect Chaosium to pander to my every whim.
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