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I'm with BRP any edition


smiorgan

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Hi All,

We all know about the "edition wars" between D&D fans. At a certain moment they were so bitter that rpg.net had to implement special policies against them. Maybe, in part - but only in part- they were a self-inflicted evil on the part of WotC, because of their marketing of 4E. But this is not important. Anyway at a certain moment some D&D fans felt the need of saying:

imwithDND_forumsig1.thumb.jpg.e7aa157396 

I've always thought we BRP fans were different, able to appreciate variety, non confrontational, more convivial and relaxed, and that formus such as BRP central were the proof of that. Well until recently... there is a lingering, creeping feeling of edition wars around here... and one has not to look very far to find signs of that ... it starts with yourself...you think that you are participating in a sensible discussion, that you are entitled to have your opinion, that you are just cracking jokes, that your remark is not only true but also clever...and all of a sudden you realize in horror:

THE EDITION WARRIOR IS STIRRING WITHIN ME!

So, I hereby renounce all edition wars and declare: I'M WITH BRP ANY EDITION

(Yes, that includes CoC7)

You see me now a veteran of a thousand edition wars
I've been living on the edge so long, where the winds of limbo roar
And I'm young enough to look at, and far too old to see
All the scars are on the inside
I'm not sure that there's anything left of me...

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I think you're on to something.

So... what makes something BRP? Are there a set of principles we can agree on that all BRP products share, and that distinguish them from D&D, Savage Worlds, and FATE?

Feel free to add or subtract from this list.

1. Use percentile dice to resolve most conflicts. Percentages are more intuitive than other ways to randomize results.

2. No arbitrary levels: characters get better at the skills they use and the skills they purchase training for.

3. No arbitrary classes: characters are defined by what they are good at rather than limited by an artificial profession. One character can be good at some combination of skills that no other character possesses, like sewing, nunchaku, and spaceship repair, as long as the character can find a way to learn those skills within the setting.

4. Armor reduces damage rather than making something harder to hit. (This is one of my personal beefs with that other system, but perhaps not a defining characteristic of BRP.)

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I think you're on to something.

So... what makes something BRP? Are there a set of principles we can agree on that all BRP products share, and that distinguish them from D&D, Savage Worlds, and FATE?

Feel free to add or subtract from this list.

1. Use percentile dice to resolve most conflicts. Percentages are more intuitive than other ways to randomize results.

2. No arbitrary levelsarrow-10x10.png: characters get better at the skills they use and the skills they purchasearrow-10x10.png training for.

3. No arbitrary classes: characters are defined by what they are good at rather than limited by an artificial profession. One character can be good at some combination of skills that no other character possesses, like sewing, nunchaku, and spaceship repairarrow-10x10.png, as long as the character can find a way to learn those skills within the setting.

4. Armor reduces damage rather than making something harder to hit. (This is one of my personal beefs with that other system, but perhaps not a defining characteristic of BRP.)

I already made my points clear on another thread. But as far as...

3. No arbitrary classes: characters are defined by what they are good at rather than limited by an artificial profession. One character can be good at some combination of skills that no other character possesses, like sewing, nunchaku, and spaceship repairarrow-10x10.png, as long as the character can find a way to learn those skills within the setting.

This really depends on how it is implemented. After all, Classic Fantasy uses classes which are in turn based on Professions. If you make me turn in my BRP license, I'm taking my dice and going home. :lol:

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Join my Mythras/RuneQuest 6: Classic Fantasy Yahoo Group at https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/RQCF/info

"D100 - Exactly 5 times better than D20"

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Hehe... I'm not going to throw anyone off the train. As far as I'm concerned, it can be as all-encompassing as we decide it is. But is BRP any role-playing game that uses D100? If I took AD&D and multiplied all the To Hit and Saving throws by 5, would it be BRP?

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I am not in complete agreement with Andrea on this. The D&D Edition Wars were not a pleasant event, but they did have a merit: they told the publishers they were not doing what their customers wanted.

If the "we love D&D any edition" had overcome the dislike for D&D4e, the resurgence marked by D&D Next would not have happened. Now, I loathe D&D5 and much prefer D&D4, but the majority of D20 players really prefer that other approach. Which means they were correct in lobbying WotC and telling them "go back to the origins or we will buy only from Paizo". It was the tone of the edition wars that was wrong, not the idea that the customers had a saying in what they wanted the publisher to offer them.

As a publisher, I have one principle I try to follow: listen to praise once, and to criticism twice or thrice. Negative comments are what is really useful to a sensible publisher, because they point at actions that he has to take. Praise boosts the publisher's ego and encourages further activity, but hardly does anything to help improve the product.

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Proud member of the Evil CompetitionTM

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Everybody has the right to like or not like any game.

You have also the right to tell other people what you like or dislike about a particular game or edition.

There is nothing in the world that can make me like or dislike a game or edition of it nor should there be a "PC movement" that one has to subscribe to to tell the world that "I love the game no matter what". Because I maybe don't and I probably have a reason for not liking it. And most likely I can tell you my reasons and you might agree or disagree.

That being said nobody should take away other people's fun and enjoyment of a game or edition of it by insulting or ridiculing said people, game or edition.

Stay mature, civil, and all will be and stay well.

And if you can't do that get off the net and play YOUR goddamn game instead of wasting YOUR ( and everybody else's) valuable dice-rolling time with behaving like an arsehat!

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I am not in complete agreement with Andrea on this. The D&D Edition Wars were not a pleasant event, but they did have a merit: they told the publishers they were not doing what their customers wanted.

If the "we love D&D any edition" had overcome the dislike for D&D4e, the resurgence marked by D&D Next would not have happened. Now, I loathe D&D5 and much prefer D&D4,...

... It was the tone of the edition wars that was wrong, not the idea that the customers had a saying in what they wanted the publisher to offer them.

Paolo, maybe we are more in agreement than it seems. I think you express a sound point of view as a publisher. 

In fact, my emotional statement was more about tone than about content. I like to post here because it's a nice place and I felt the tone of certain conversations was becoming unpleasant.

Also, I wanted to start from myself. But edition wars do have many kinds of warriors: there are grognards, moaners, nitpickers and general smart-arses but there are also the self-appointed enforcers of corporate orthodoxy, the "heroic" publishers who expect only praise for their efforts and demand (!) support from the customers. I was trying to point out how easily we can become one or the other of these unpleasant characters.

There are very serious things I want to debate even if it becomes very unpleasant. I just did that at work this morning. But, rpgs are not one of those things. If discussing the relative merits of CoC7 viz. the previous editions is a cause of distress...well, maybe I prefer to let it go. And stress what I have in common with other fans.

Obviously, for publishers it is different. For them rpgs are (to some extent) a serious thing and they should listen even when it's not fun. 

(By the way, I also quite like D&D4. The game has flaws but also a very distinct personality!)

    

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Also, I wanted to start from myself. But edition wars do have many kinds of warriors: there are grognards, moaners, nitpickers and general smart-arses but there are also the self-appointed enforcers of corporate orthodoxy, the "heroic" publishers who expect only praise for their efforts and demand (!) support from the customers. I was trying to point out how easily we can become one or the other of these unpleasant characters.

This would be a very good start for a Fiasco playset.

Anyway, LONG LIVE BRP. In any form!

Proud member of the Evil CompetitionTM

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For me, a lot of it is basic web etiquette (which unfortunately is often lacking on the web). 

State your opinions freely and realize others will do the same.

Avoid ad hominem attacks. 

Be specific about what you like/don't like. Balance criticism and praise. As Paolo notes, criticism is more valuable than praise, but if you hate everything, you clearly are not going to be happy even if all your suggestions are taken. And that means your suggestions are more likely to be ignored.

Be open to considering opinions you don't share. Have a little humility. Realize that you're gonna be wrong one day, and it might even be today.

Don't say anything about someone you wouldn't say to that person, and don't say anything online that you wouldn't say to that person's face, if that person were armed and slightly drunk.

If someone says something you know to be incorrect, you'll get better results if you correct them gently than you will if you humiliate them. 

If you're angry, say so, and say why you're angry, rather than attacking others.

Read your post before hitting Submit Reply. 

If things get heated, try to back the rhetoric down rather than ratcheting it up.

Avoid discussing politics, religion, and your opinions about various ethnic, racial, and national groups (or any other kind of group), except on websites that are expressly devoted to such discussions. Don't make assumptions about people from different groups... you'll inevitably be wrong.

Avoid asking loaded questions like "Why are all X so stupid?"

Remember that sarcasm and satire often does not come across in written language. Also realize that "it was satire" is not a particularly good defense for reprehensible behavior. 

Remember that not everyone has the same frame of reference as you, so try to be as clear as you can.

Never use all caps, unless you're saying LONG LIVE BRP! 

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I myself much prefer D&D5E over 4E (heh! lets have a D&D edition war!) :), however, I think BRP is already a marked difference in terms of the tone in the way fans have behaved towards each other in the past anyway.

Essentially, the schisms between Chaosium's BRP, the newer editions of RQ and the other related systems out there largely mirrors the schism between D&D4E and Pathfinder/3.5E over the last few years - except it never became so bad that gamers fell out or became acrimonious about anything especially. People just accepted other people had different preferences, while others cross-pollinated the systems as they desired. It always felt like a 'family'.

The advent of Chaosium's take-over and subsequent re-organising RQ and BRP under more co-ordinated rules also largely mirrors the advent of D&D5E which, in fact has a mix of ideas from all editions in it (despite what hard-core Edition warriors might argue) and earned a general acceptance as the official D&D rules now. If Chaosium can also get broad acceptance of the Essential merging (heh! see what I did there?) of RQ to BRP rules among fans, then the future for themselves and the fans of both groups is quite rosy.

I do accept that there biggest brand, Call of Cthulhu, won't be operating under these rules as of yet, and it would be foolish of Chaosium to even consider a new edition after the shenanigans of the Kickstarter campaign. However, if the RQ/BRP Essentials rules become an accepted norm over the years, then they might consider them for CoC too in good time. I'm thinking like 2021 maybe (CoC 40th Anniversary edition.....).

On a similar matter, has there been any official celebration of it being Chaosium's 40th Anniversary this year?!

 

 

 

Edited by TrippyHippy
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Unlike D&D fans I suspect BRP fans generally worry less about whatever the 'Official' Chaosium rules are. We didn't have a Gary Gygax ranting about what was/wasn't 'Official D&D' (not that I recall anyway). The mindset just seems different.

We're already used to being a tiny corner of the RPG world... harder to find pickup games with strangers in stores (if that was ever something you wanted)... and we're used to having lots of options to tweak the game play to our tastes.

In the bigger picture, so what if I don't care for CoC 7e and won't be buying/running it? I've still got decades of content to play with. RQ6 is great but I still want the Reaction Formula and Skill Advancement through in-game use/training... not hard to do at all.

I'm not loyal to any one company or system though... I'll pull ideas from wherever I find them.

Edited by Simlasa
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RQ6 is great but I still want the Reaction Formula and Skill Advancement through in-game use/training... not hard to do at all.

In regards to Skill Advancement in RQ6, I use Improvement Rolls as written, although I also allow a bonus Improvement Roll at the end of any scene if a player-character has rolled a Critical Success in that scene. It's kinda a left-over from BRP's more organic method, and is a winner for players who are used to playing one of the earlier builds of BRP.

But yeah, just shows you how you can mix and match from both systems, and get the mechanics you want.

At the end of the day, its all BRP  :D

Edited by Mankcam

" Sure it's fun, but it is also well known that a D20 roll and an AC is no match against a hefty swing of a D100% and a D20 Hit Location Table!"

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Unlike D&D fans I suspect BRP fans generally worry less about whatever the 'Official' Chaosium rules are. We didn't have a Gary Gygax ranting about what was/wasn't 'Official D&D' (not that I recall anyway). The mindset just seems different.

We're already used to being a tiny corner of the RPG world... harder to find pickup games with strangers in stores (if that was ever something you wanted)... and we're used to having lots of options to tweak the game play to our tastes.

In the bigger picture, so what if I don't care for CoC 7e and won't be buying/running it? I've still got decades of content to play with. RQ6 is great but I still want the Reaction Formula and Skill Advancement through in-game use/training... not hard to do at all.

I'm not loyal to any one company or system though... I'll pull ideas from wherever I find them.

If you don't think Gary Gygax ever ranted about people not playing by the official rules, you need to go back and read his columns from the early '80s. :)

 

I don't think any BRP game has really crossed the line that both 3E and 4E did for D&D. Both of those editions completely broke backwards compatibility, which was a new thing for D&D. BRP is more like the D&D OSR but on a smaller scale. You've got multiple versions of what is all basically the same game with players freely mixing adventures and rules between them. 

Even CoC 7E, which is held up as a radical change, really isn't that different. I have played 7E, and most of what happened at the table felt exactly the same. Anything new could easily be jettisoned. 

BRP is just an easier game to mod than D&D as well. Level-based games come with an expectation of balance between PCs and against opponents that BRP simply isn't interested in. That makes it harder to throw the whole thing out of whack if you pull parts out of one BRP and stick them in another. 

I'm not saying there is no room at all for disagreement between BRP people, but the divides are a lot smaller in the BRP world. 

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I agree with much of this sentiment, and I think the analogy to D&D OSR holds up well.

I would be happy if Chaosium goes with the RQ6 BRP build as a priority, and the BRP BGB survives more as a fan entity, just like the D&D OSR.

A return to the cottage industry concept of roleplaying is not a bad thing if we still have a more prolific and presentable commercial set of rules.

I would love to see MW and the BGB thrive with a similar passion to D&D OSR, and I suspect we may potentially be witnessing the emergence of this within the views expressed here in BRP Central.

Interesting times actually  :)

 

Edited by Mankcam
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" Sure it's fun, but it is also well known that a D20 roll and an AC is no match against a hefty swing of a D100% and a D20 Hit Location Table!"

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If you don't think Gary Gygax ever ranted about people not playing by the official rules, you need to go back and read his columns from the early '80s. :)

He didn't rant as such, but he always made sure that people were aware that his rules were 'official' and he was very dismissive of criticism. Noting that the old AD&D 1st edition files have all been made commercially available again recently, it's a reminder just how very arbitrary and restrictive the original rules were too. Yet, at the time (the 80s) about 90% of all roleplayers were playing AD&D, so what could you do?*

 

* Answer: Play RuneQuest! :)

Edited by TrippyHippy
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I would be happy if Chaosium goes with the RQ6 BRP build as a priority, and the BRP BGB survives more as a fan entity, just like the D&D OSR.

Agreed, and noting that BRP and RQ: Essentials will most likely still be reasonably translatable anyway. Having the BRP Gold book and back catalogue still available in PDF and POD ought to allay fears of it being completely airbrushed away.

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I certainly hope that one of the first things Chaosium does next year (i.e. post CoC7 KS) is to formalise their licensing strategy. If BRP Essentials is as stripped-down as looks likely, and the approach is to include the rules within specific game books, the BGB is still there as a resource for individual writers to crib from and add their favourite sub-systems into their BRP book.

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Dreamscape Design: My Corner of BRP Central ... Mine, All Mine! 

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If you don't think Gary Gygax ever ranted about people not playing by the official rules, you need to go back and read his columns from the early '80s. :)

I think you misread me... because I certainly do remember those days. My reference was to not having a similar leader in the RQ/BRP community shouting down the heretics.  Of course, there was probably a lot less money involved in the non-D&D corners of the hobby.

I'm hoping for a BRP OSR as well.

Edited by Simlasa
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You see me now a veteran of a thousand edition wars


I've been living on the edge so long, where the winds of limbo roar


And I'm young enough to look at, and far too old to see


All the scars are on the inside


I'm not sure that there's anything left of me...

Heck, since you're quoting Blue Oyster Cult I'm spellbound to join your cause :D
Talking more seriously, I've never been disappointed with any game of the BRP family that I've played. Now I'm courious about CoC 7.
(...and although I've actually never played it, I believe I wouldn't be disappointed even with the infamous D&D 4e)

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He didn't rant as such, but he always made sure that people were aware that his rules were 'official' and he was very dismissive of criticism. Noting that the old AD&D 1st edition files have all been made commercially available again recently, it's a reminder just how very arbitrary and restrictive the original rules were too. Yet, at the time (the 80s) about 90% of all roleplayers were playing AD&D, so what could you do?*

 

* Answer: Play RuneQuest! :)

Runequest!? In the '80s, I was playing Stormbringer and Call of Cthulhu! Clearly this calls for a bitter edition war between us.

I certainly hope that one of the first things Chaosium does next year (i.e. post CoC7 KS) is to formalise their licensing strategy. If BRP Essentials is as stripped-down as looks likely, and the approach is to include the rules within specific game books, the BGB is still there as a resource for individual writers to crib from and add their favourite sub-systems into their BRP book.

That's something I will be curious to see. 

I think you misread me... because I certainly do remember those days. My reference was to not having a similar leader in the RQ/BRP community shouting down the heretics.  Of course, there was probably a lot less money involved in the non-D&D corners of the hobby.

I'm hoping for a BRP OSR as well.

My apologies. I agree with that. There has been some drama in the scene about whether certain lines will continue to receive official support (RQ 6 fans worried about the fate on non-Gloranthan RQ 6, Magic World fans worried about that line disappearing forever), I'm not seeing any particular faction of the scene calling anyone else the Devil. 

I think it helps that a lot of people, like me, are on multiple sides of the fence. I like the lighter side of BRP when I run CoC, and I like running games with the heavier build of RQ 6. And while RQ 6 is my current go-to for fantasy, I have both Magic World and Advanced Sorcery sitting right next to it on the shelf to use for spare parts. 

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So here's the deal for me: 

  • I don't like CoC 7. I took part in a play test game and it just didn't work for me. The stuff it "fixed" (no snark implied by quotes, honest!) isn't stuff I felt needed fixing.
  • I have no interest in Glorantha. I've always been a home-brew setting kind of guy, and so have most of the folks I've gamed with over the years. I respect the big G, but playing in that world is not in the cards for me. I can count on one hand the number of games I've played in or run that took place in a published setting on one hand. And that's over 33 years of playing RPGs.
  • I generally dislike hit locations, so BRP versions that default to them are low on my list. Nothing against those who dig them, but I'll take the Major Wounds and random armor values approach any day.
  • I like the Resistance Table, so BRP versions that eliminate it are low on my list. Nothing against those who hate it, but it's part of what makes BRP "BRP" for me.
  • I dislike RQ6's Action Points as a method of managing combat. Nothing against those who feel differently. I just happen to dig DEX ranks (especially with an accompanying initiative roll).

So the current plans from Chaosium regarding what they're going to focus on short term (though I understand the business reasons and admit that they're smart) leave me cold. And the plans for BRP Essentials as we understand them make me sad. Still, I wish Chaosium nothing but the best and hold no grudges. I won't trash talk them or their products based on any of the above. I'm not interested in edition wars or internecine fighting. But I am under no obligation to support things I don't like. So I won't.

Instead, I'll be over here with my Big Gold Book, my Elric! and my Magic World, my Worlds of Wonder box, my Superworld, my Ringworld, and all the awesome stuff I've picked up over the (now ended) BRP renaissance (including but not limited to Classic Fantasy, Aces High, Mythic Iceland, Celestial Empire, Dragon Lines, and Blood Tide). If Chaosium (or any licensees) put other something that resonates with me on the fluff side (the next iteration of Mythic Iceland, perhaps?), I'll pick it up and make it work with my preferred version of BRP. That, thankfully, is terrifically easy to do. And if someone I know offers to run a game I'm interested in using a system that's not my favorite, I certainly won't refuse to play outright.

See, I cut my teeth on and spent most of my first 15 years of playing RPGs with The Fantasy Trip, which was already out of print and unsupported by 1983. I comfortably survived the disappearance of Classic Traveller for all the years it was unavailable. I had no problem playing Champions and its siblings when Hero Games was on the ropes. So sticking with the BGB as it lives on as PDF/POD will actually be pretty darn easy. But even though it won't be miserable and untenable, I'll always be a little sad that "my" BRP isn't the one that's getting the love. So don't expect me to be all sunshine and roses about everything that comes next. Just know that I won't feel compelled to rain on your parade. Deal?

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DnD is like CGI of today, while BRP is like a Ray Harryhausen film. I like the old, the obscure, the underground, the DIY, the forgotten, the underdog, the slightly flawed, the human.

Naw, that makes it sound like an apology for BRP being old and busted... it ain't. I played in a game over the weekend that had every bit as much Player narrative and dramatic roleplay as any new 'indie' game could hope for. Just that we didn't rely on hardcopy rules to do so, the players brought it themselves (one of my main gripes about some newer games is their seeming belief that rules can insure 'good' roleplaying and 'good' GMing).

And nothing against DnD... it plays just fine and in an equally wide variety of styles depending on who is sitting at the table.

Edited by Simlasa
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So here's the dealarrow-10x10.png for me: 

  • I don't like CoC 7. I took part in a play test game and it just didn't work for me. The stuff it "fixed" (no snark implied by quotesarrow-10x10.png, honest!) isn't stuff I felt needed fixing.
  • I have no interest in Glorantha. I've always been a home-brew setting kind of guy, and so have most of the folks I've gamed with over the years. I respect the big G, but playing in that world is not in the cards for me. I can count on one hand the number of games I've played in or run that took place in a published setting on one hand. And that's over 33 years of playing RPGs.
  • I generally dislike hit locations, so BRP versions that default to them are low on my list. Nothing against those who dig them, but I'll take the Major Wounds and random armor values approach any day.
  • I like the Resistance Table, so BRP versions that eliminate it are low on my list. Nothing against those who hate it, but it's part of what makes BRP "BRP" for me.
  • I dislike RQ6's Action Points as a method of managing combat. Nothing against those who feel differently. I just happen to dig DEX ranks (especially with an accompanying initiative roll).

So the current plans from Chaosium regarding what they're going to focus on short term (though I understand the business reasons and admit that they're smart) leave me cold. And the plans for BRP Essentials as we understand them make me sad. Still, I wish Chaosium nothing but the best and hold no grudges. I won't trash talk them or their products based on any of the above. I'm not interested in edition wars or internecine fighting. But I am under no obligation to support things I don't like. So I won't.

Instead, I'll be over here with my Big Gold Book, my Elric! and my Magic World, my Worlds of Wonder box, my Superworld, my Ringworld, and all the awesome stuff I've picked up over the (now ended) BRP renaissance (including but not limited to Classic Fantasy, Aces High, Mythic Iceland, Celestial Empire, Dragon Lines, and Blood Tide). If Chaosium (or any licensees) put other something that resonates with me on the fluff side (the next iteration of Mythic Iceland, perhaps?), I'll pick it up and make it work with my preferred version of BRP. That, thankfully, is terrifically easy to do. And if someone I know offersarrow-10x10.png to run a game I'm interested in using a system that's not my favorite, I certainly won't refuse to play outright.

See, I cut my teeth on and spent most of my first 15 years of playing RPGs with The Fantasy Trip, which was already out of print and unsupported by 1983. I comfortably survived the disappearance of Classic Traveller for all the years it was unavailable. I had no problem playing Champions and its siblings when Hero Games was on the ropes. So sticking with the BGB as it lives on as PDFarrow-10x10.png/POD will actually be pretty darn easy. But even though it won't be miserable and untenable, I'll always be a little sad that "my" BRP isn't the one that's getting the love. So don't expect me to be all sunshine and roses about everything that comes next. Just know that I won't feel compelled to rain on your parade. Deal?

I have loads of respect for The Venomous Pao with regards to this post. While I happen to love everything he said that he is not a fan of, he did it in such a way as to not offend... anyone. This can obviously apply to all members of this forum by the way, you all rock. Its just that his post was so perfect that it resonated with me on a personal level. Myself, I only play with hit locations and static armor ratings, for example, but we are all part of the same family. We can all easily adapt any version of BRP to any other, so this is not a problem.

Thanks Mr. Pao, for the very eloquent post.

Oh, and he likes Classic Fantasy as well, so there's that.  ;)

Rod

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"D100 - Exactly 5 times better than D20"

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I have loads of respect for The Venomous Pao with regards to this post. While I happen to love everything he said that he is not a fan of, he did it in such a way as to not offend... anyone. This can obviously apply to all members of this forum by the way, you all rock. Its just that his post was so perfect that it resonated with me on a personal level. Myself, I only play with hit locations and static armor ratings, for example, but we are all part of the same family. We can all easily adapt any version of BRP to any other, so this is not a problem.

Thanks Mr. Pao, for the very eloquent post.

Oh, and he likes Classic Fantasy as well, so there's that.  ;)

Rod

Hear Hear! I was very impressed  (and whole heartedly agree) with Paos post.Well said! 

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