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skull

Attacks/round house rules or other options besides using strike ranks.

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I think a reliable method to find out what a science fiction roleplaying game needs

is to take a look at the games which are successful, and all of those I know inclu-

de the kind of supplements which BRP is still missing. Even the comparatively gene-

ric and rules light Savage Worlds - certainly not Hard SF - has a Sci Fi Gear Toolkit,

a Sci Fi World Builder Toolkit and a Sci Fi Bestiary Toolkit, and science fiction's hea-

vyweights like Traveller and GURPS Space typically have a whole range of such sup-

plements. The fact that these supplements sell rather well (much better than, for

example, adventures) demonstrates that a majority of science fiction gamers con-

siders them important enough for their games to spend money on them. We could

debate for years whether these customers are right or wrong, but it does not take

a genius to suspect that BRP will fail as a science fiction game if it does not offer

its potential customers what they expect of a science fiction game, and this very

obviously includes at least a detailed technology system.

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It is true that BRP does not offer much for SciFi. But, it is also true, that for our group there is currently no good SciFi RPG out there that suits our style. They are either too simplistic, their settings are not appealing or they are too rules-heavy. A nice SciFi BRP book addressing vehicles, equipment and starships would be something many people would spend money on, that is for sure.

First problem is: many people have different opinions what SciFi is. If we could say that e.g. Classic Traveller by Mongoose is a basis for generic SciFi, we could build up on this.

I personally have finished a document about equipment and vehicles for the 2300AD BRP setting, but I hesitate to make it public for different reasons. One is that it might be seen "outdated" as it only addresses a low tech, hardish SciFi technology, where all the Space Opera goodies are missing. An other reason is that there are no rules for creating equipment and vehicles included. I "could" include these based on my conversion tables and formulas, but I "know" there are loopholes and these design rules need a GM to overlook the created stuff so it won't be over the top.

Doing a book about "generic" SciFi is a lot of thought and work and will look -IMHO- very similar to the Traveller rule book. And then, I can simply use that (or different GURPS books) and convert stuff over. Which takes a minimum of time and I can spend my resources on the story, rather than fiddling with details.

@Atgxtg: you got me wrong, I do not like High Fantasy at all. And I do not like any "Powers" in my games, except Mutations. And this is a part of BRP that feels incomplete as well - out of the box. But as BRP is a toolbox, it is OK and it is easy to build on the stuff that is already there.

Anyway, this thread is no longer about Attacks and House rules ... we should create a new one. ;)

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It is true that BRP does not offer much for SciFi. But, it is also true, that for our group there is currently no good SciFi RPG out there that suits our style. They are either too simplistic, their settings are not appealing or they are too rules-heavy. A nice SciFi BRP book addressing vehicles, equipment and starships would be something many people would spend money on, that is for sure.

I can accept that. But then some would say the same about FRPGs, or any other genre. That's why there are so many differernt RPGs.

First problem is: many people have different opinions what SciFi is. If we could say that e.g. Classic Traveller by Mongoose is a basis for generic SciFi, we could build up on this.

That reallyisn't a problem. Or at least it isn't specfic to SciFi. Somebody just has to take a stab at something and people decide if they like it or not. Same as with everything else.

And that is why I said SciFi RPGs are a lot of work. They tend to need tech to help sell the setting. It can't be a sword and a crossbow, it has to be a lightsaber and a bowcaster. Or some such.

I personally have finished a document about equipment and vehicles for the 2300AD BRP setting, but I hesitate to make it public for different reasons. One is that it might be seen "outdated" as it only addresses a low tech, hardish SciFi technology, where all the Space Opera goodies are missing. An other reason is that there are no rules for creating equipment and vehicles included. I "could" include these based on my conversion tables and formulas, but I "know" there are loopholes and these design rules need a GM to overlook the created stuff so it won't be over the top.

You should make it public, with warnings. Maybe test break it a little to see where it breaks down. Something, is always better than nothing, becuase it gives us something to work from.

Doing a book about "generic" SciFi is a lot of thought and work and will look -IMHO- very similar to the Traveller rule book. And then, I can simply use that (or different GURPS books) and convert stuff over. Which takes a minimum of time and I can spend my resources on the story, rather than fiddling with details.

Yup. Which is precvely why I think BRP needs somebody, to put together a genric SCiFi book. Just so people who want to play SciFi won't go running to Traveller, GURPS, 2300, StarHero or some other system. You loose players that way. And it is a bit much for newbies.

@Atgxtg: you got me wrong, I do not like High Fantasy at all. And I do not like any "Powers" in my games, except Mutations. And this is a part of BRP that feels incomplete as well - out of the box. But as BRP is a toolbox, it is OK and it is easy to build on the stuff that is already there.

Many do like high fantasy. In fact it is the largest RPG segment. For BRP to be successful it has to try to cover the bases. As for mutations, they ARE incomplete. They are pretty much the same as the ones in Hawkmoon, and those weren't much more than a table like the one for Chaotic Features.

Anyway, this thread is no longer about Attacks and House rules ... we should create a new one. ;)

We could,m but I think we can just restore this threat to it's original purpose.

I for one don't see a problem with expanding the riposte rules to handle multiple attacks. Everybody just dies quicker.

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I think a reliable method to find out what a science fiction roleplaying game needs is to take a look at the games which are successful, and all of those I know include the kind of supplements which BRP is still missing. Even the comparatively generic and rules light Savage Worlds - certainly not Hard SF - has a Sci Fi Gear Toolkit, a Sci Fi World Builder Toolkit and a Sci Fi Bestiary Toolkit,

All only available as PDF's - which strongly suggests they are VERY niche products... And, by the very nature of Savage Worlds, pretty abstract as well.

...and science fiction's heavyweights like Traveller and GURPS Space typically have a whole range of such supplements. The fact that these supplements sell rather well (much better than, for example, adventures) demonstrates that a majority of science fiction gamers considers them important enough for their games to spend money on them.

GURPS and Traveller have fan bases established over 25 to 35 years that have a large contingent of fans who are very focused on "gear heading" - and it is pretty well established amongst both fan bases that there is also a significant chunk of fans who are NOT gear heads, and who find the emphasis on gear head stuff problematic. Traveller in particular has always had a tension between the presumption that that the VDS / "Design Sequences" are central and need to be detailed and those who were quite happy with the detailed systems being optional...

How many people ACTUALLY build vehicles or worlds or weapons using these systems? How many buy the books to read, but actually use the gear catalogues for "off the shelf" details? How high amongst general Traveller fans is the regard for Fire, Fusion & Steel...

Given that Traveller and GURPS (and Hero, Spacemaster, Alternity, Shatterzone, Star Wars, Star Trek, Star Frontiers etc etc) have ALL been there before and in many cases are still available (not to mention the great swathe of generic and small press PDF only stuff at DTR etc) for world creation, gear etc, what on earth makes it worth while doing a "BRP" badged re-hash of the same generic stuff? If I want to run BRP 2300AD (or something similar in feel) I can just use the BRP rules and plug 2300AD kit in as necessary (pretty much what I HAVE done in the past in fact).

Tech is an intrinsic part of a setting. Build a setting, THEN it's worth trying to sell a SETTING SPECIFIC Vehicle / Equipment Guide - but a "generic" system won't appeal to the gearheads (they already have their preferred system(s)) NOT the non-gearheads (they have no interest in spreadsheets, they want the setting).

We could debate for years whether these customers are right or wrong, but it does not take a genius to suspect that BRP will fail as a science fiction game if it does not offer its potential customers what they expect of a science fiction game, and this very obviously includes at least a detailed technology system.

I disagree - BRP's weakness as a science fiction game is that it doesn't (and never had has) compelling SF settings, or at least reasonably well supported ones - if people buy in to the settings they will buy in to the idea of BRP as an SF game.

I had copies of Other Suns and Worlds of Wonder in 1983 - so BRP has ALWAYS been an SF game for me and I was quite happy to use supplements for otehr games to patch the gaps (2300AD Equipment Guide; the starship rules from Space Opera; World Generation from Alternity etc etc) as required for the SETTING I was playing in.

Cheers,

Nick

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...I personally have finished a document about equipment and vehicles for the 2300AD BRP setting, but I hesitate to make it public for different reasons. One is that it might be seen "outdated" as it only addresses a low tech, hardish SciFi technology, where all the Space Opera goodies are missing. An other reason is that there are no rules for creating equipment and vehicles included. I "could" include these based on my conversion tables and formulas, but I "know" there are loopholes and these design rules need a GM to overlook the created stuff so it won't be over the top.

Publish it - a book of "Stuff" with a unified look and feel, even if the setting specific have to be filed off for copyright reasons is still very useful and, I suspect, will have far wider appeal than any "gear head" design sequence system

Doing a book about "generic" SciFi is a lot of thought and work and will look -IMHO- very similar to the Traveller rule book. And then, I can simply use that (or different GURPS books) and convert stuff over. Which takes a minimum of time and I can spend my resources on the story, rather than fiddling with details...

Or BTRC's Stuff! or any one of the numerous other such systems...

Cheers,

Nick

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I see your point and agree with much of it, although since BRP itself is a generic

system I still think that a generic supplement (like those for magic, etc.) would

fit in pretty well - at least I have not seen many complaints that those generic

supplements already published were of little use because there is no specific de-

tailed setting for BRP.

Edit.:

Of course one can always use the technology material of another system, like

GURPS or Traveller. I just wonder whether we should encourage players to buy

BRP material or material of other games, and from a business point of view the

approach "buy from the competitor, he has what we do not have" does not

seem utterly convincing.

Edited by rust

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I don't agree with Nick's point about tech being tied to setting. Magic is tied to setting even more than technology, yet BRP has several such systems in the core book. And with tech there is a bit more common ground from one setting to the next than there is with magic. Most SciFi tech ties to at least pay lip service to the laws of physics-even if it bends or breaks them.

I agree that we don't necessarliy need a set of design rules for SF vehicles and spacecraft. But we could ceetrainly use a good genric sampling of such craft to help with setting up own of SF campaigns. Most Gms don't want to create everything from scrath and will probably go with a system that gives them more tools to work with than try to port everything over from a system that does have such tools to one that doesn't. rust is something of an exceptionin that regard.

Likewise, a little something on planet genereation and such would help. We don't need fantastically detailed and accurate stellar and planetary data that would impress Hawking and Sagan, but some simple world generation tables would be nice. Those who want more can just port stuff over from other games or real world textbooks.

In other words, what I think BRP needs is something along the lines of GURPS SPACE or STARHERO. Since BRP is a genric toolkit system, it should give us enough tools to do the job.

Sure, this stems from a lack of SciFi settings from Chaosium. But that sidesteps the issue. Back when Choasium created most of the stuff that wound up in the BRP rules, all thier products were setting specfic. The various rules and subsystems came from various incarnations of RuneQuest, Stormbringer,Elric!, Call of Cthulhu, Elfquest, Nephilim, Worlds of Wonder and so on. So what? The BRP core book changes that. Instead of being a setting specfic book it is a generic toolkit designed to help people to adapt and use BRP for any setting. But since Chaosium didn't publish much SciFi stuff (Future World and Ringworld) there wasn7t much SciFi stuff hanging around that could be included in the BRP book.

If BRP doesn't cover that,it will miss out on that segment of gamers.

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I'll see what I can do, but I use lots of text from the 2300AD books, so I will need Marc Millers OK for publishing it. i do not see why he should not allow me to republish the old stuff, especially when I look at the numbers of downloads for the first two books.

It is easy to include a small, fast but decent enough world builder as well. Also, a creation pyramid for lifeforms can be included. Yes, why not. If people are interested, I will do that - for free, as always.

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I'll see what I can do, but I use lots of text from the 2300AD books, so I will need Marc Millers OK for publishing it.

It could be that you need Matthew Sprange's permission instead, because

his Mongoose Publishing currently holds the license for 2300 AD.

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Only for publishing new stuff. As I am only doing the BRP conversion and reprint/quote old books, it should still be Marc. But he will tell me, I guess.

Not sure what Mongoose thinks of this, though. They might not like it ... ;)

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Only for publishing new stuff. As I am only doing the BRP conversion and reprint/quote old books, it should still be Marc. But he will tell me, I guess.

Not sure what Mongoose thinks of this, though. They might not like it ... ;)

You probably won't have too much trouble with it providing you leave it as just a conversion, do not charge forit, and don't use explain 2300AD setting spefici details.

It's bad form for a RPG company to go after it's fanbase. It generates bad feelings among current or potential customers, and costs money. It also costs money for them to go after somebody, and the conversion would just expand the potential customer base as to use the conversion one must have 2300 stuff to convert.

It's when you start to cut into their profits or use setting specific stuff without permission where most companies act-usually to protect their property or license. Even then, most companies will just contact somebody or send them a cease & desist rather than come down on them hard-since it isn't worth it. Coming down hard will end up costing the company more money than they will get, and make the company look bad.

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