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dulcamara

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About dulcamara

  • Rank
    Junior Member

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  • RPG Biography
    Got started long ago with OD&D (Keep on the Borderlands!), currently play in a long-running retro style AD&D 1E campaign. Also dabbled in other old TSR games (original Gamma World, Star Frontiers, Buck Rogers, etc), some White Wolf offerings, etc. Newcomer to Chaosium, but I think the system & settings are probably the best out there...
  • Current games
    AD&D 1st edition, currently putting together my own BRP campaign setting.
  • Location
    Portland, Oregon USA
  • Blurb
    I enjoy books, the outdoors, rock n roll, et al.
  1. Hi all. I've owned the Gold Book for years but never really took the plunge with it - neither myself nor my players had experience with the system and I just wasn't ready to adapt the toolkit. Fast forward to 2019, I've run a CoC (first 6th, now 7th) campaign for several years & numerous one-shots. Everyone enjoys the basic system and I'm pretty familiar. It is time! Before I start, just looking for some advice on general best practices on adapting the system. Revisiting the BRP book, there are so many options. 1. We really like some of the CoC 7e streamlining, is there anything to keep in mind while integrating that stuff into the "typical" Gold Book mechanics? 2. How do you handle printing out a record of the rules, including customized occupations/skills/abilities/etc in your milieu? Feels like just handing the single copy of BRP to my players and having them memorize which rules we're using or not, isn't really practical. I'm kind of leaning towards typing it all out by hand, but that's a ton of work. 3. Along those same lines, are there any modular character sheet templates you can customize? Tried making my own once and it was ugly as hell, at the same time existing games like CoC, RQ, Elric, etc, don't quite have the right combo of rules and/or skills, etc, for each variant a BRP GM might want. 4. Any other advice for BRP rules/options that you either thought worked really well, or really didn't work in practice? 5. Any other advice in general? FWIW I'm probably going to be doing a "realistic-ish" post apocalyptic setting, with mostly feudal level society and tech (21st century tech acting more as "magic" artifacts), if that informs any of the above. Either that or Sub-Roman Britain. Thanks in advance.
  2. What skills do you apply this to aside from the typical Jump, Stealth, Ride, etc, Physical section listed on the stock BRP character sheets? Obviously in the case of Swim rather than a simple -20% or whatever I'd prohibit it in chainmail or greater, maybe give them a Difficult check to stay afloat. Otherwise specifically in regards to combat skills. The Dodge penalty makes sense. How about Parry? Or the various weapons skills themselves - melee and ranged? Brawl/grapple? Just trying to figure out the main tradeoffs players will be dealing with Re: armor protection.
  3. Appreciate the feedback, sounds like a resounding rejection of ration tracking! Nice to be saved the trouble. FWIW, I was thinking about this whilst reading Lonesome Dove... if I recall, the troupe was heading across Wyoming and ran out of water and the narrative became a desperate quest to find some before succumbing. Just made me think it could make for a pretty taut RPG session, but maybe only in special circumstances...
  4. In your experience is this worthwhile or does it just add another unnecessary roll to combat?
  5. I've never played a campaign in any system where players' food & water rations had any great impact. Maybe a couple times the GM halfheartedly encouraged the players to keep track, but as soon as players expressed that it was a meaningless chore it fell by the wayside. And I tend to agree, in many cases that sort of thing is just prosaic bookkeeping that doesn't add much to the narrative - especially in any heroic scale fantasy or sci-fi. My nascent campaign is going to be fantasy with some post-apocalyptic elements though, i.e. a once flourishing world medieval world in the aftermath of catastrophe. I'm considering using food/water supplies as a point of emphasis, and force the players to actively hunt & forage or at least plan ahead for travels in the more desolate areas. Occasionally use the threat of dehydration or starvation as a plot device. To make things easier I was even going to add a Rations section to my character sheets with handy checkboxes so players could quickly visualize and record their supplies. Sounds good 'on paper' so to speak, but I could see despite my best efforts the players still being kind of bored by it. Then again, it could work great. Any of you guys actually pulled this off? PS - I should mention several of these players will be coming from our AD&D campaign, where I'm probably the only PC who even keeps track of things like arrow or lamp oil (purely for igniting and throwing on monsters of course) supplies.
  6. Ah, thanks for linking to that thread frogspawner. Sorry to beat a dead horse. Just seems strange that Chaosium would opt to publish such a clunky rule that would seemingly come up in nearly every fantasy or medieval historical setting. I did skim through the discussion and there didn't seem to be any consensus on the best fix. I've thought along the lines of your approach Jegergryte, but then wonder about a fix swinging the pendulum the other way and overpowering shields. Since I haven't run a BRP combat with actual players yet I'm not sure how the mechanics play out in a game session, i.e. what parts of the combat process could potentially bog down and whatnot. I'm considering starting out with a different fix mentioned - on a critical hit & successful shield parry, damage up to the shield's current HP is absorbed, while damage in excess of the shield's HP is merely docked from the its permanent HP (dented or cracked, etc). Makes it quite a bit more durable and better protection against critical hits. Dunno if this is better or worse than giving 'free' parries or % bonuses.
  7. Again, as a disclaimer I'm a newcomer to BRP about to run my first campaign, so apologies if I'm just missing a key point in both of these areas... But far as I can tell, the only benefit to using a shield as opposed to any other parrying "weapon" is the durability in HP (re: fumbled parries leading to broken weapon) and protection from missile fire. I guess you could throw in the knockback attacks. Otherwise a player's main weapon will be just as effective defensively, and probably moreso as they can concentrate their skill points there. What's the deal with that? I mean, for a combat system that's relatively realistic ("relatively" being the operative word here) this doesn't make sense. Attacking and parrying with a longsword alone, or attacking with a longsword and parrying with a shield - IRL that is a huge difference. Along those same lines - although I'll probably discourage any dual-wielding in my campaign - fighting with two weapons seems to be based on the same exact mechanics as striking twice with one. There's no real advantage. Is this just lazy mechanics? Or is there a subtlety that I didn't get the first few reads through? If the former, are there variants (I'm especially thinking of shield use here) that make a little more sense?
  8. I got it here: http://www.4shared.com/document/wRt_8CFn/The_Guide_To_Herbs_for_RPGs_5_.html (the author explicitly gives permission to distribute on the net) It should be noted that the nuts & bolts are from a D20/AD&D perspective, but again there's a lot of useful ideas in there - I'm planning to adapt some things for BRP.
  9. Heh, I asked about RPG herbalism on another forum just yesterday. "The Guide To Herbs for RPGs" was by far the best recommended, it may not answer all your questions but is a great toolkit on the subject. There's an online version here: http://www.republicofnewhome.org/lair/games/herb5/herb5illo1.html You can also find the PDF for download, which I kind of prefer as it's a little easier on the eyes and there aren't really too many hyperlinks in the former anyhow.
  10. So you would *increase* non-sorcerers' skill points rather than just *decrease* sorcerers' skill from the default?
  11. Many thanks for all the insights guys! I decided to go with the sorcery system over the skill point-based magic to differentiate those powers from "just another set of skills." Nothing is set in stone though and I do see the balancing effects of skill based magic, things might change. I'll be using random attribute generation (with the option to re-allocate a couple points afterwards), so unfortunately not a ton of point-based balancing for sorcerous characters. Think I'll probably just reduce the starting skill points for magical professions. Also creating an arcane/occult language as a necessity for mages - I figure this directly simulates some of the study required. Great advice on the combat/HP too. I'm still on the fence - personally I'm of the more-grit-less-pulp school, but as icebrand said, it might be easier to downsize HP than rewind an early TPK that finishes off some promising characters due to unfamiliarity with the system. But yeah, I'm kinda weary of the so called cinematic "mow down a legion of mooks, then face the badass villain and his lieutenants", predictable as all hell... so I tend towards the standard BRP Hp and make sure healing is easily available, at least early on... Rosen McStern mentions Fate Points. Anyone use them? They looked a bit overpowered and maybe a little too meta from first impressions...
  12. Hey all... putting together my first BRP campaign and am probably going to start running sessions in about a month or so. I have a handful of Chaosium titles and feel like I have a decent enough grasp of the rules, but you never know until the time arrives. All my players will be new to the system. None of them I'd describe as 'hardcore gamers' though most will come from a long running retro-style AD&D 1st edition campaign I've been in. The setting will be fantasy, but more of a Iron/Dark Age environment than your garden variety Tolkeinesque or High Middle Ages setting, and I'm trying to keep an undercurrent of "realism" (at least in the physical sense) despite the ample supernatural elements. As I'm fleshing things out, questions on the ruleset are popping up left and right. I'm sure some of them will get ironed out in gameplay but I'd like to address as many as possible now, as I want the players to enjoy the system and return! So I'll probably be coming in here regularly with questions... here are a few off the top of my head: 1. Obviously the ratio of skill points available at char creation to number of skills to choose from can have a big effect on players' starting power. I've cut out all the non setting appropriate ones and was thinking of slimming the list down even more, but don't want to unbalance things. Assuming the default "normal" level skill points, what's an ideal # of skills to choose from? 2. I'll be using a magic system along the lines of the Sorcery powers. What kind of tradeoff at chargen (skill points? attributes? other?) works best to balance the advantages of sorcery use? 3. Obviously, coming from AD&D many of the players are used to absurd amounts of HP. Most of us agree that's a problem and I'd like to start with the SIZ & CON average, but not sure if that's too steep a change. Definitely using hit locations. Any of you folks run games with SIZ + CON HP? 4. Any other general advice for a BRP novice? Many thanks in advance...
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