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BRP for RQII (olde version)?


RobP

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Hi All,

I have been a long time player of RQ (since late '70's) and have always felt the most comfortable with the original RQII.

Recently I became aware of BRP which I have heard some claims that it is RQ3/4 (depends how you number :rolleyes: ) in all but name.

I guess my question is:

Is it worth buying BRP to run a RQ campaign? Or would I be better off sticking with my current books? Does BRP bring anything new to the table or is it just RQ without Glorantha?

If it is the latter I'm not entirely sure of its value. On the other side of the coin I guess I could be missing the point - and that is BRP is a Generic system which can be used for anything - something that the original RQ rules cannot be used for.

Can anyone enlighten me on this?

Thanks

RobP

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... and that is BRP is a Generic system which can be used for anything - something that the original RQ rules cannot be used for.

In my view, that is the point. :)

For example, I am currently using BRP to design a hard science fiction setting,

which would have been quite difficult with the original Runequest rules.

And if you take a look at the various monographs that have been published for

BRP since 2008, you will see that almost every possible genre is present there,

which would also have been difficult with the old Runequest rules.

For me, BRP is a "toolbox" system that can be used for almost any genre and

for most styles of roleplaying.

"Mind like parachute, function only when open."

(Charlie Chan)

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If you are a RQ3 fan, you will appreciate it big time. It contains improved rules for a lot of things (closing, shields, etc.), a combat system that fixes the problem of endless combat, and other small fixes over RQ3. But it also allows you to "downgrade" parts of RQ3 to a simpler version in a modular way if your like. You can take away Strike Ranks, Hit Locations, separate attack and parry skills, etc. Or you can keep them. Personally, I now play without Strike Ranks and with unified weapon attack/parry skills, and I feel much better. but it is a matter of taste.

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Hi All, [/qoute]

Hi RobP

I'd say if you are going to run an RQ campaign, then stick with RQ2 or RQ3 depending on which you prefer. While BPR does add new things to the table (and even removes a few things from the table) none of the additions would be of much relevance to a RQ/Glorantha campaign. Not that BRP isn't a fine prodcut, but nothing is closer to old RQ than old RQ.

The core BRP rules are essentially a streamlined version of the RQ3 system, as used in games like Call of Cthulhu and Elric. There are optional rules in the book (lots of them) that will allow aGM to run virtually any variant of the system that Chasoium related in the past, or something fairly close to it. In fact, the main advantage of BRP, other than that it is in print and being supported, is that it is a toolkit of options that the GM can use to customize the core system to handle different genres or styles of play. In addtion to Glorantha and generic fantasy, the game can be used for settings such as modern day, something historical, science fiction, or even superheroes.

If you want to run a RQ/Glroantha game then stick with RQ2 or RQ3. If you would like the use the underlying system for something other than Glorantha, BRP is quite useful (as is/was the old RQ3).

Chaos stalks my world, but she's a big girl and can take of herself.

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Thanks for all the replies.

I think I will buy - if only to see how it can be leveraged for other settings and to see some of the rules used in Chaoism games (I've only ever bought RQ from them).

Although it looks like Mongoose are doing a good job with RQ2, I sometimes wish Chaoism would get it back :)

RobP

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Why wish to have only one publisher doing everything? Competition is always a good thing. If two companies develop and support two similar systems, both will be stimulated to make something better each time the other one comes out with a good product. Now BRP must take a breath and develop a reply to RuneQuest II.

And please note that the systems are actually three if you add OpenQuest to the equation.

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Have you looked at the free-to-download BRP QuickStart?

It gives a good idea of the what the BRP book is like (being basically extracts from it), but is very cut-down (no criticals, no magic, no options...).

It does have the 7 scenarios, which the book doesn't have, though...

What I like least about BRP: The Attack/Parry Matrix, which introduces "Opposed Rolls" for combat (and it's not optional).

What I like most about BRP: It's in print - and acting as a catalyst for loads of good stuff to be produced !

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Why wish to have only one publisher doing everything? Competition is always a good thing. If two companies develop and support two similar systems, both will be stimulated to make something better each time the other one comes out with a good product.

Not really. Since the vast majority of gamers cannot buy everything they would like, competition means that any money spent on products from Company M is money that isn't spent on products from Company C.

Now if Company M produces products in greater quantity and faster than Company C, it could eat up C's market share. For example if someone wants a book to cover a certain genre, say Sci-Fi, and Company M can produce three or 4 books before Company C can, then a lot of people who buy the books from M will decide not to buy the book from C when it finally comes out, since they already have a Sci-Fi book they can use with that system.

Why? If BRP is a solid game with a solid fanbase they don't have to worry about MRQII. I don't think the majority of BRP fans are going to desert to MRQII, and if for some reason they do, then BRP is dead. There is no way Chaosium can match Mongoose's output in terms of quantity.

And I for one, don't consider BRP to have improved upon things (like shield) from RQ3. I think BRP changes are not all for the better. So it is very much a question of personal preference. If I was going to run an RQ game, I wouldn't even bother with BRP. Nothing is more RQ than RQ.

Chaos stalks my world, but she's a big girl and can take of herself.

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I have been a long time player of RQ (since late '70's) and have always felt the most comfortable with the original RQII.

RQ2 was good, but RQ3 was better, in my opinion.

Recently I became aware of BRP which I have heard some claims that it is RQ3/4 (depends how you number :rolleyes: ) in all but name.

I don't think it is, in fact I would like BRP more if it that were the case. To me, BRP is a mix of Stormbringer/Elric/CoC with a bit of RQ thrown in now and again. That's not a bad thing, at all. It is more of a toolkit than a coherent system, mainly because there are so many optional rules.

I guess my question is:

Is it worth buying BRP to run a RQ campaign? Or would I be better off sticking with my current books? Does BRP bring anything new to the table or is it just RQ without Glorantha?

It's definitely worth buying as it is different from RQ2 and even RQ3. For a pure fantasy game, RQ2/3 is probably enough. For anything else then BRP is better than RQ2/3/RQM simply because it does cover different genres, albeit sketchily.

If it is the latter I'm not entirely sure of its value. On the other side of the coin I guess I could be missing the point - and that is BRP is a Generic system which can be used for anything - something that the original RQ rules cannot be used for.

That's exactly it, BRP is pretty good for most settings, in a basic form. To use it properly for many settings, however, you would have to add a lot of detail, not necessarily general rules but certainly equipment and spot-rules.

I think I will buy - if only to see how it can be leveraged for other settings and to see some of the rules used in Chaoism games (I've only ever bought RQ from them).

You probably won't regret buying BRP. It is different to all the other RQs and BRPs around.

Although it looks like Mongoose are doing a good job with RQ2, I sometimes wish Chaoism would get it back :)

There's not much chance of that - why would they try to buy back RQ when they have BRP? We should be able to use pretty much all the RQ supplements and pretty much all the BRP supplements together,, genre permitting.

Certainly Deus Vult/Stupor Mundi/Merrie England/Val de Loupe should be compatible to a good degree. RQ's Eternal Champion should be fairly compatible with Chaosium's. RQ doesn't have a SciFi game, as Mongoose has the Big Beast that is Traveller, but I would guess that OpenQuest's SciFi game would be compatible with BRP's Outpost 19 and Fractured Hopes.

Simon Phipp - Caldmore Chameleon - Wallowing in my elitism since 1982. Many Systems, One Family. Just a fanboy. 

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Hi RobP, fancy seeing you here ;)

IMHO, although there is a lot of intellectual appeal to generic systems, I often find my heart wins over my head and I end up going for systems with a compelling setting. Classic Traveller, and Gloranthan RQ are the obvious examples, which somehow seem to beat their generic offspring (MGT and BRP) precisely because you get the whole thing. It is (to my mind) like the difference between a tournament adventure and a campign-set adventure: the mechanics may be the same but the setting is really key. The final analogy for me is with the WoD games: to my mind the WoD mechanics are very basic, but the settings are so compelling it is hard *not* to enjoy the games. Heck, they even call the system 'storytelling' rather than 'gaming'.

With all that said, there is no reason why you can't have the best of both worlds. Using a sound generic system with a great setting which requires little adaptation sounds like a win-win to me. I guess BRP+Glorantha or Rolemaster+MERP would be examples that spring to mind.

Finally, there is something to be said for current availability, as already mentioned.

The link to the BRP Quickstart is worth checking out, as the quickstart will let you know how much or little BRP differs from the RQ you know and love, it is free, and it contains seven one-shot adventures.

Just my 2c

Stuart

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Recently I became aware of BRP which I have heard some claims that it is RQ3/4 (depends how you number :rolleyes: ) in all but name.

RuneQuest 3 is available on ebay, a great book. RuneQuest 4 exists only as an allmost completed playtest copy that circulate among RuneQuest fans here on the net. Then we have the MRQ and MRQ2, which like BRP, are a bit more distant relatives. MRQ has another "feel" and another version of the Glorantha you're familiar with. BRP with the correct options can be almost identical to RQ3, but the rules are generic.

If you want to continue to play in 3rd Age Glorantha, but would like to check out a different system, I'd recommend RQ3, RQ4 or BRP.

If you like to play a d100 game in Glorantha, and is willing to accept the change in setting which the 2nd Age is, then MRQ2 is the obvious choice.

SGL.

Ef plest master, this mighty fine grub!
b1.gif 116/420. High Priest.

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RobP,

Just to toss in a little more to the mix, if you are a big Glorantha fan there is a RPG called HeroQeust. It is very different from RQ, and uses a very different task system, but gives a lot of new and updated info on Glorantha. A lot of RQ fans have switched over to HQ, and a lot of RQ fans don't like HQ. Nut it is worth mentioning, just in case you are not familiar with it.

Chaos stalks my world, but she's a big girl and can take of herself.

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...Then we have the MRQ and MRQ2, which like BRP, are a bit more distant relatives. MRQ has another "feel" and another version of the Glorantha you're familiar with. BRP with the correct options can be almost identical to RQ3, but the rules are generic.
I picked up MRQ2 last night and my first impression is it's a lot cleaner than MRQ1 and moved back toward RQ3. Overall I think it's way better than MRQ1. I'm glad I purchased it, whereas MRQ1 didn't hold me long enough to finish it.

To thread-jack a little more, MRQ2 also shows one other strength of non-generaic or nontoolkit rules: Because there is one coherent system, it's easier to see what you like and don't like, and it appears easier to trade out specific rules for houserules. In theory, BRP should make this easier, but it's harder to see how it all works together and harder to believe that every combination of options has been play-tested, and that the configuration I want will work. With MRQ2, I assume (reasonable until proved wrong) that Mongoose tested the RAW, so I just need to evaluate whether any change I want to make will unbalance things. That feels easier to me as GM.

Steve

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A lot of RQ fans have switched over to HQ, and a lot of RQ fans don't like HQ. Nut it is worth mentioning, just in case you are not familiar with it.

I'd say a lot of Gloranthaphiles have switched over to HQ, while the RQ fans generally don't like it. ;)

SGL.

Ef plest master, this mighty fine grub!
b1.gif 116/420. High Priest.

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Not even all the gloranthaphiles...

But HQ has its own fans outside Glorantha. It is just another game that provides another kind of game experience. And it is strongly recommended: you do not really know what rpg is until you have read some of this materials by Robin D. Laws.

And, SDavies...

Yes, they tested it. 50% of what you see in the book has been changed after feedback from Deleriad, Simon Bray and me (among others). They considered playtest experience very carefully.

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I'd say a lot of Gloranthaphiles have switched over to HQ, while the RQ fans generally don't like it. ;)

SGL.

I just wanted to include it for completeness. I've got mixed feelings about HQ myself. It does provide more depth on Gloranthan culture, and adds some neat things, but I don't care for the retcons, or the game mechanics. All stats feel the same.

But if RobP is a fan of Glorantha, it is probably worth knowing about.

To thread-jack a little more, MRQ2 also shows one other strength of non-generaic or nontoolkit rules: Because there is one coherent system, it's easier to see what you like and don't like, and it appears easier to trade out specific rules for houserules. In theory, BRP should make this easier, but it's harder to see how it all works together and harder to believe that every combination of options has been play-tested, and that the configuration I want will work. With MRQ2, I assume (reasonable until proved wrong) that Mongoose tested the RAW, so I just need to evaluate whether any change I want to make will unbalance things. That feels easier to me as GM.

That is one of the advantages of focused games vs. generic RPGs. Generic RPGs have more flexibility, but focused RPGs tend to do a better job of handling a specific setting, and with simpler rules. A classic example is Pendragon. The rules are designed to handle knights in an Arthurian setting. The Pendragon rules do not necessarily adapt well for other settings or genres the way GURPS, HERO or BRP can, but it probably handles Arthurian Knights better than any of the generic systems as it is more focused.

Yes, they tested it. 50% of what you see in the book has been changed after feedback from Deleriad, Simon Bray and me (among others). They considered playtest experience very carefully.

That right there is a big improvement. One big problem with MRQI was that Mongoose failed to listen to the playtesters-even going so far as to stop listening to them entirely. Virtually every flaw that popped in in MRQI was pointed out by the playtesters, too. Apparently, they powers that be thought they knew more about what was important that any of the playtesters, even more that Steve Perrin. Apparently, the higher ups got upset when the playtesters didn't rave about all the "improvements".

Definitely a major step in the right direction.

Chaos stalks my world, but she's a big girl and can take of herself.

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And, SDavies...

Yes, they tested it. 50% of what you see in the book has been changed after feedback from Deleriad, Simon Bray and me (among others). They considered playtest experience very carefully.

Great! My comment was poorly worded and probably gratuitous. I'm sorry if it caused anyone to infer I didn't think the rules were tested. I guess it was carryover on my part from the...looseness...of some of the MRQ1 rules.

Your confirmation of testing supports my point: MRQII is a coherent system that works well -- the fact that it is tested to work well in play makes it an easier (IMHO) platform to customize than BRP is.

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It is worth pointing out that BRP does NOT include the traditional RQ magic systems of battle/spirit magic, rune/divine magic, and sorcery. It's magic systems are completely different and not based on RQ/Gloranthan magic. So out of the box it can not recreate that aspect of RQ.

There is the Basic Magic monograph available from Chaosium, which is a straight reprint of the RQ3 magic systems, but it needs some (relatively easy) conversion to be used with BRP.

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Great! My comment was poorly worded and probably gratuitous. I'm sorry if it caused anyone to infer I didn't think the rules were tested. I guess it was carryover on my part from the...looseness...of some of the MRQ1 rules.

Your confirmation of testing supports my point: MRQII is a coherent system that works well -- the fact that it is tested to work well in play makes it an easier (IMHO) platform to customize than BRP is.

As a matter of fact, I was not referring to any of your comments but the many complaints that appeared here and on the Mongoose forums. I think that Matt Sprange has admitted that MRQ 1 failed to achieve some of its objectives, so some of these complaints had, nevertheless, some reasons to exist.

I would not say, however, that MRQ 2 is better to customize than BRP. MRQ still lacks some basic rules for several aspects, and even if some BRP combinations have not been tested together, there are several caveats in the rules against combinations of options that are considered incompatible. Do not forget that BRP as a whole is certainly more tested than MRQ2. So far.

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Do not forget that BRP as a whole is certainly more tested than MRQ2. So far.

And always will be, unless it suddenly ceases to exist. Assuming you mean BRP in all it's incarnations, it has a 30+ year head start, which it will keep as time goes by.

Chaos stalks my world, but she's a big girl and can take of herself.

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Technically MRQ is a version of BRP with some major changes such as removing general hit points and replacing experience checks with improvement roll, innovations such as Dedicated POW and tweaks such as broadening skills. MRQII has refined, altered and added to this with combat style and combat manoeuvres.

So far the most tested and played BRP system is CoC. After that you probably have i order RQ2, RQ3 and Elric!/Stormbringer (though the 1st and 2nd editions are so radically different from the later ones that is is almost a different game).

I don't know actual numbers but I suspect that MRQ has already sold more and been played more than all the BRP systems except CoC and RQ2. I believe RQ3 basically bombed as a mainstream RPG but has been played for a long time by a dedicated core. RQ2 was relatively brief but very popular.

It is pretty likely if the current situation continues that MRQ is going to end up being the second most played and developed BRP system after CoC.

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Uhm, I doubt RQ2 really beats RQ3 in adoption. There were a lot of people who refused to change edition, but AH edition was around for a very long time (10 years?), and was used as the basis for the GW edition, too. So a lot of people were exposed to RQ3, not to mention the large amount of supplements available for it - and most of them were good. What is different is that RQ2 was an actual competitor to D&D, while despite AH's desires RQ3 was not.

As for SPQR, I think Steve had very good ideas with it. I still wonder why he is not marketing SPQR more consistently via the "usual" channels. Neither Newt nor me had incredible marketing resources to start with, and you can see both d101 and Alephtar gaining momentum in the BRP community by exploiting the available retail channels.

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As for SPQR, I think Steve had very good ideas with it. I still wonder why he is not marketing SPQR more consistently via the "usual" channels. Neither Newt nor me had incredible marketing resources to start with, and you can see both d101 and Alephtar gaining momentum in the BRP community by exploiting the available retail channels.
That has puzzled me as well -- Steve has both name recognition, and an interesting set of rules. My conclusion was his interest was in working out those rules as he had time, rather than an interest in wide distribution and adoption. You've been consistent and energetic in using the available marketing channels, and I suspect that is why you're successful. I'm guessing Steve Perrin puts his time into rule tinkering rather than marketing & communication.

Steve (Davies)

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