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RuneSlingers - Lightweight pbta roleplaying homage to RQ2

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I don't know if anyone here is familiar with World of Dungeons, but it's a super lightweight RPG in a handful of pages. It's based on the Apocalypse engine as seen in Apocalypse World, Dungeon World and others. It started as a Kickstarter bonus, as an in joke. If Dungeon World was modern D&D in an alternate reality, what might very early White Box and Basic D&D look like?

There have been other World of Dungeons inspired min-hacks since. There's a micro-Warhammer Fantasy RPG called Streets of Marienburg and a micro-Traveller called Rovers. What might a micro-RuneQuest look like in the same vein? Well, here's my attempt at an answer.

RuneSlingers Google Docs

It's a love letter to RuneQuest II in 8 pages, two of which are character and reference sheets. The thing is, these micro-RPGs rely on the reader brining a familiarity with roleplaying conventions, and in particular Powered By The Apocalypse game mechanics. On the other hand, many early RPGs really were extremely bare bones. The idea is to provide the minimum needed to get started, while providing the maximum scope to expand and extend the game your way and really make it your own. It deliberately doesn't answer all the questions you need to deal with to play, but provides just enough tools to reasonably come up with your own solutions. Note, the idea isn't to close RQ or Glorantha exactly. This is trying to be it's own thing.

As an RQ2 homage though, it needs to make sense to people who don't know anything about the PBTA mechanics, and I could rally do with feedback on that. What makes sense, what doesn't?

Edited by simonh
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Just for fun, I made up a set of traditions for playing on the other side of the conflict, as some people are wont to do :P

Always dress richly.
Divine Wrath - 3d6 close. Area near when outside.

Divination - Discern the location of something or someone.

Esoteric Mystic
Never speak clearly.
Abjuration - Gain +3 to resist magic.

Third Eye - Detect and reveal all lies and illusions in the area.

Elite Warrior-Noble
Never retreat.
Shield - Gain +1 armour, minimum 3 points, and +1 to resist magic.

Truespear -  A piercing weapon inflicts +1d6 damage for one battle.

Witch Assassin
Never reveal secrets.
Concealment - Become undetectable by magical means and can only be clearly seen in full light.

Mindblast - One enemy goes mad and acts randomly.

War Wizard
Never touch blood.
Boon - Ally's weapon inflicts +1d6 for one battle.
Curse - All attacks against one enemy inflict +2 for one battle.

Imperial Agent
The empire before all.
Detection - Reveal the location and all pertinent information about someone or something nearby.
Charisma - Gain +2 to influence people.

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Wow, those are awesome. I was thinking of doing an Imperials set as well, but never even sketched out any ideas. I love the Geas for the Mystic, that’s just perfect.

The feats are very much going in the right direction, and a good touch of gonzo I think suits the Imperials just fine. In this system +1 to do anything is a big bonus, and really the biggest mod Id give for any one source. I’ve tried to avoid straight bonuses to do things wherever I can though, and make feats more about changing the situation.

Take the Imperial Agent’s Charisma ability. What do agents do? They cultivate networks of informants and assassins. So how about this:

Infiltrators: Roll+Wits (An agent is in place/you have information/it’s all gone John Le Carré)

Notes: You have a web of informants and spies you have leverage over, in your pay or blackmailed into doing your bidding.

One thing I’m not sure about is expending Will points to invoke feats. I’m not sure it’s necessary. You could just ask for Grit rolls if people start spamming their Feats.

Edited by simonh
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I love the concept of the Esoteric Mystic, but I think the feats need a bit of brainstorming. Resist Magic is a bit too passive IMHO and if anything an Imperial mystic should be creating illusions or warping people’s perceptions or reality, rather than banishing them.

Rather than suggest my own ideas for feats, let’s start with figuring out what these guys are about? There’s no bones about it, the Empire is corrupt and despicable. They’ve sold out to dark powers for material gain, but how would that manifest in a mystic?

I was just thinking about a power that turns other people’s feats against them, or subverts people’s powers somehow.

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