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Questbird

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Questbird last won the day on September 21 2015

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About Questbird

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  • Location
    Melbourne, Australia

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  • RPG Biography
    I played D&D in the 1980s, then switched to Elric! for my long running (20 years+) campaign set in Fritz Leiber's World of Nehwon. I've also played some Call of Cthulhu, mostly as referee. Recently I've been a player in a friend's BRP Classic Fantasy campaign. Other games I've played or refereed are: Cyberpunk, Deadlands, Dragon Warriors, Gamma World, Maelstrom, Mechwarrior, Paranoia, Recon, RIFTS, Shadowrun and Traveller
  • Current games
    Still intermittently running my twenty year old Nehwon campaign with Elric! and some BRP rules (Classic Fantasy, Swords of Cydoria, Rubble and Ruin), also playing in other BRP campaigns, as well as a Dragon Warriors and Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay. I roleplay once a month currently.
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    Melbourne, Australia
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    Hmm.

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  1. I'm inspired to give it another look. I've collected sci-fi rules like a sparrow: River of Heaven (I was a backer); M-Space, and non-BRP ones like Coriolis and Fading Suns. Haven't run a campaign with any of them yet.
  2. This is not really about publishing any more so you might want to start a new thread. There are many about magic systems here. Mythras Classic Fantasy is one way to directly convert the D&D experience to d100, if that is your goal. A 'new' character in BRP is not the same as a first-level character in D&D. BRP characters are moderately experienced when they begin, and become somewhat more so over time, but not with the same 'zero to hero' arc as D&D characters. Beginning sorcerers in either system don't have access to many spells, but the few that the BRP sorcerer can access might be quite powerful. Magic is one of the pain points in BRP conversion, and one of the few areas which gets lots of variants and house rules. I think it's because magic mechanics are very setting-dependent. If you want levelled spells (and therefore sorcerers increasing slowly in power like low-level D&D), I did a BRP adaptation of Rolemaster's Spell Law which I use in my games. It would work with any collection of spell lists with levels, such as D&D -- though the work there has already been done by Classic Fantasy, mentioned above. In my system the chance to cast the spell is influenced by the spell level. This means that higher-level spells are not castable until the skill increases; the spell caster automatically 'learns' the higher level spells when their skill % increases sufficiently. To cast the most powerful spells generally requires more POW than the average sorcerer possesses; more can be gained from bargains, braziers of power, sacrifices, rituals and/or magically charged places and times.
  3. That's what I was hinting at in my post about Law/Chaos. Those forces own a piece of you in exchange for their supernatural (or hypernatural in the case of Law) aid. In the original game such a commitment was a much more dubious one, as either of those forces were bad for humanity when applied in excess. Neither was good at reigning themselves in. The Cosmic Balance was their counterweight, and serving it was the closest thing to 'good' you got in the Young Kingdoms. Another particular thing about allegiance to the three forces in Elric! and Stormbringer was that things were heavily skewed towards Chaos in the Young Kingdoms. Chaos allegiance points were much easier to acquire and spend than Law or Balance points. They were like the Dark Side of the Force in Star Wars: "quicker, easier, more seductive". In other words the allegiances were deliberately unequal. I'm not sure whether the Light/Darkness allegiance in Magic World has a similar Balance force. Been a while since I looked at Magic World. One of the great things about the allegiance system is that it is a game mechanic which relies on and supports roleplaying. You gain allegiance points through your actions, including some which provide no mechanical in-game benefit. You need a consistent 20 more points in one force or another to be committed to that force. That consistency requires roleplaying; most people accumulate points for all forces randomly unless they try.
  4. The allegiance system in Magic World evolved from Elric! In that game the Powers were Chaos, Law and the Balance rather than light/darkness. Chaos and Law are more ambiguous forces to serve and in fact you had to think carefully about whether you even wanted to be so strongly associated with either. The sense of 'selling your soul' was stronger, especially to Chaos and Law. Balance was the hardest to achieve by roleplaying, and provided the least mechanical benefits to your character, but that worked in the context of Young Kingdoms metaphysics. Having said that though, yes mechanically there is a tendency to accelerate the accumulation of Allegiance beyond a certain point. And yes it can make characters powerful. I've had two Elric! characters achieve Apotheosis: one in Chaos and one in Law. The Chaos one, a sorcerer, did sort of stop playing soon after, effectively retiring. Later I thought of using his character as an NPC villain. The Law one continued for a time, founded a kingdom, had a few adventures and basically retired too. So character Apotheosis could be a marker 'end game' or retirement (or even NPC-dom, like characters who lose all of their Sanity in Call of Cthulhu). In fact in Elric! that was explicitly stated for Apotheosis of the Balance -- that such a character has 'won the game' and could ignore the general doom of the Young Kingdoms. Another approach (a more D&Dish style) would be to have champions of Light and Shadow routinely challenged by more powerful beings of the opposite side such as demigods, other champions or warlords, depending on your campaign. Basically move the campaign to a power-gaming stance. To delay all of this you can invent or adapt ways to spend allegiance points, either on spells, magical effects or other benefits from the Power. A bit like Fate points or Hero points. Then you can put off the accelerating accumulation of points which ends in Apotheosis. A simple example is calling for intervention from the Power you serve. You could have a character make an Allegiance check. If successful, the Power called helps her immediately somehow (maybe very subtly, depending on your campaign magic level) but she then loses allegiance points equal to her dice roll. Failure has no effect. The character then straps herself into a hamster-wheel of Power-pleasing duties to recover lost allegiance points, and endless adventures ensue.
  5. Or sorcery. But blood will flow copiously when a a master starts fighting.
  6. I found the many factions appealing, but it makes first-time character generation take a long time. I allowed a fairly free-hand with the factions and ended up with some odd combinations in the party. However we didn't get far enough into the campaign to find out their impact.
  7. I started Kingdom and Commonwealth, but only got a session into it. Unfortunately my players didn't 'get' the historical era and basically we went back to bog-standard fantasy (with a different GM). I felt a bit bad that I wasn't able to make it fun for them. One player was a bit more adventurous and enjoyed the religious debates etc. but it wasn't enough to sway the group. I'm still hopeful that we can dust it off again some day.
  8. 😃 sure, sure. Everything's possible in BRP.
  9. There's also the Khajit from Elsweyr in Tamriel (the Elder Scrolls). They have a reputation for being thieves and traders.
  10. Yes the K'Kree and the Hivers were very interesting aliens. On the Cat-people theme, there were also the Kilrathi from the Wing Commander games, who were sort of Klingon- or Aslan- like (honour-obsessed warriors); and the Emirates of Hacan in Twilight Imperium, who were basically wealthy traders and deal-makers but not particularly cat-like except for their picture.
  11. The Chaos allegiance power mechanic as written in Elric!, which awards Chaos points for casting spells and then allows Chaos allies to draw on allegiance points as magic points as well, makes sorcerers pretty powerful. There is an obvious 'power corrupts' message behind Chaos allegiance points, but it is a Hell of a power trip along the way for the individual sorcerer. It was fine for the Young Kingdoms but I found it a bit too powerful for my low-magic Nehwon campaign. But some sort of corruption mechanic is appropriate for a sword-and-sorcery campaign. For me, using allegiance points to power spells works well for priests because it forces players to roleplay some fawning to their god in order to get (or recover) access to the most powerful spells, and also explains why such spells wouldn't be used every day. I suppose sorcerer's allegiance to Chaos is not much different -- the power comes from outside the wizard in exchange for obedience to the cause.
  12. I use Allegiance points to power Channeling spells. That is, one magic point from the caster and the rest from his or her Allegiance.
  13. I really like some of your ideas, especially the half-INT number of initial spell lists and the magical damage bonus idea. My players never really used the damaging spells so I didn't come up with a way to adapt that. The advantage of Spell Law is that you can create really diverse and specific spell casters by using the various spell lists in the book. Good job! The Arms Law criticals idea is interesting too.
  14. Sounds like a Renaissance Big Gold Book project. Good luck!
  15. Don't forget one major difference between Magic World and OpenQuest: the latter is still in print. (Although the former is not too hard to find.)
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