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Generic BRP encounter generator


skoll

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Continued from RQ2 Premium Reprint - What would it take

The programming is not the issue, the main work would be the mapping of skills etc... between different systems (sometimes just a name change, but other cases grouping granular skill sets (eg: RQ2 skills) to simpler skills sets (eg: OpenQuest skills or RQ6 Combat Styles), and potentially more challenging with more abstract systems such as HQ or Fate.

I'm the developer of the RQ6 Encounter Generator. dragonewt is right on the money.

There are basically two ways to approach this. The simple way is to have each system as a separate tool. This would mean, that you need to add all the encounter/enemy specifications for each system separately, but it would be pretty easy to add support for new systems.

The other approach would be to implement some kind of mapping between the systems, so that a Troll Warlord added to OpenQuest would also be available in RQ6, RQ2, Legend, and all the other systems (let's leave non-d100 systems out of this for the time being). This approach requires significantly more work, but would also be more rewarding. Frankly, I'm not sure if this approach is feasible or event possible, as there are several unique features in many of the systems, but if there's enough support in the community, I would be interested in exploring this option.

Maybe a third alternative could be to implement mapping for simple non-magic-using creatures, and leave magic-users system-specific.

Anyways, let me know what you think.

And as mentioned, if the mapping-option can't be done, I can add simple support for a couple of other system, if there's enough interest.

Edited by skoll
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Hi Skoll.

I love the idea of the full mapping - but I think logistically its a nightmare. I said "programming", but what I was referring to was the data mapping exercise, having tangled with a few (probably better specified and bounded) instances of that sort of thing at work. Bluntly, I think by far the simplest solution for everyone is to have a tool for each system.

Personal bias, but I'd love to see one for Magic World, and the BGB, OpenQuest 2, Renaissance and RQ2 are the other obvious immediate candidates for new tools. Less sure about RQIII, WOrlds of Wonder, MRQ1 etc 

Presumably the existing RQ6 tool will continue largely unchanged for Chaosium RuneQuest next year - are the differences between RQ6 and Legend sufficient to make separate tools worth the effort, or are those systems close enough to make it unnecessary? I haven't actually read Legend closely enough to be sure, but my memory is they are very similar.

Cheers,

Nick

 

 

 

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Having done this sorta thing off and on I KNOW it would be easier to have seperate tools. Copy /Paste code then minor editing. I'll second Nicks request for a Magic World generator, if you're keeping score. :)

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Rather than have completely separate tools and data, why not have one data set, calculate differently where required for some output, and store additional data for each system for only where there are differences between systems that can't be mapped or calculated. This in theory might be simpler than managing multiple sets of what are effectively the same data. If an entry has a tag for a given system, use that, else fall back to the generic defaults, or a map could be used to expand a broad skill into a granular set as required.

A simplistic made up example -  Base stats are the same, damage modifiers etc, are calculated per system, hit points and locations are also calculated, for skills store as follows:

RQ2 entry might list: broad sword attack/parry, medium shield parry, dagger attack/parry, head butt attack, grapple, climb, run, jump, throw.

RQ6 entry might list: Viking combat style, athletics.

FYI, these ideas are only brain storming, and would need further discussion.

Edited by dragonewt
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Of course I want the RQ2 version. :D

I guess it depends on how much truly common material there is between editions and versions - not that many, really, as far as I can see. But I leave such matters to more digitally talented individuals than myself.

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You don't need digital talent to participate in this discussion :-) You only need knowledge of the systems. I'm familiar only with Legend and RQ6 (and RQ2 to a degree), so I'm gonna need some help if I'm to implement support for MW for example.

dragonewt, your example was a good one. Yes, everything that can be derived from stats (e.g. damage modifier) is easy to calculate system by system.

But let's take the combat skills... Let's say you are an RQ6 player and create a template in the system. You don't know anything about RQ2 and don't care to know. What combat skills should the system give to the RQ2 instance of the foe? Or, considering how the foes created by the tool are used (cannon fodder), is RQ2 level of combat skill granularity actually necessary?

And the same example from the other perspective. You create an RQ2 template, and add 7 different combat skills to it. How should the system determine the one combat skill for the RQ6 version of the foe?

One question a lot boils down to is one how would/do you use the system: Would you utilize the templates created by others, or would you always create your own templates? If most users create their own templates, this mapping exercise is more or less pointless.

Anyways, I'll start looking into MW and see what it would take to support it. If somebody feels an overwhelming need to compose a list of differences between RQ6 and MW, go for it :-)

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A quick skim through the character gen chapters of MW and RQ6 netted the following:

  • Appearance is a stat, alongside Strength, Constitution, Size, Intelligence, Power and Dexterity
  • Damage Bonus table is different between the two games.
  • Magic World uses Total Hit Points (CON+SIZ/2) and Major Wounds (THP/2), no hit locations
  • Skills are grouped in to five categories, each category has a bonus (derived from stat)
  • each skill has a base score (a few calculated from stats, most not).
  • the skill list has a fair number of differences.
  • There are stat x 5 rolls for Strength (Effort), Constitution (Stamina), Intelligence (Idea), Power (Luck), Dexterity (Agility) and Appearance (Charisma).
  • Power (the stat) determines Power Points (resource for powering magic)
  • Weapon Skills are, effectively by broad categories - a character who increases their named skill in Falchion increases their skill in all class 2 weapons (BROADSWORD, CUTLASS, FALCHION, RAPIER, SCIMITAR & SHORTSWORD); but not "Fighting styles".
  • Weapon Damages are different (e.g. a Long Bow does 2D6+1+ 1/2 DB in MW, vs 1D8 in RQ6)
  • Weapons have Str/ Dex requirements to wield - characters who are below either value halve their effective skill
  • Armour values are global and variable in MW (e.g. Hard Leather is 1D6 with Helm, 1D6-1 without a helm)
  • Armour fits a particular Size (some with a tolerance)
  • Armour penalizes Perception and Physical skills, again varying depending on whether a helm is worn or not.
  • Move is 8 for all humans (varies by race for non-humans)
  • Combat is sequenced by DEX ranks
  • Default Age is 17+1D6 (there is an option for playing older characters)
  • Magic requires POW of 16+
  • Cultures add 10 points to three selected skills (list determined by Culture)
  • Culture determines list of occupations
  • occupations gives list of skills (some choices) and additional starting cash, character gets to add poinst to 8 skills from list in a fixed breakdown (campaign "level" determines which breakdown)
  • Occupations that grant Sorcery (not POW requirement above) gratn INT/2
  • Character gets a further breakdown of points to add to any four skills of their choice.
  • Characters start with 5D100 Bronze (cash or barter goods) plus
    • A complete set of clothes appropriate to culture,species and occupation
    • A personal item (heirloom, keepsake - significant personal, sentimental value only).
    • Any trade tools associated with your occupation
    • Additional money from their occupation (see earlier)

 

I'm sure there are others.

Nick

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For simple skill mapping:

  • For officially listed skills (and ones added to the DB later, such as some commonly used Combat Styles):
    • If the skill is a from a granular system, convert to the equivalent broad skill, at the same percentage. For any other granular skill that also maps to the broad skill, note them, and either: average all the granular skills to know the broad skill percentage, or select the highest (or some other averaging algorithm, that accounts for one at 90% and four at 25%).
      Eg: One Handed Sword attack/parry 40%, Dagger attack/parry 25%, Shield parry 50%, Head Butt 40%, becomes Viking Combat Style 39% (or maybe 50%).
    • If the skill is from a system with broader skills, expand this to multiple skills all set to the same percentage.
      Eg: Blades 60%, becomes Knife attack/parry 60%, One Handed Sword attack/parry 60%, Two Handed Sword attack/parry 60% (Optionally if it expands to more than 3 skills, list the first 3, or 3 randomly taken from the expanded list).
  • For custom skills (user created or unmapped), flag the field with the system the entry was created for, and list as unconverted when displaying in another system.
    Eg: A RQ6 Gun Daddy 55% (Combat Style), would be listed for MW/RQ2 as: Gun Daddy (Unconverted RQ6 CS) attack/parry 55%.
    This method can also be used to record custom skills, such as Smell Breath 450%.

Over time, hopefully people will also help add custom mappings for commonly used custom "Broad" Skills and Combat Styles.

Edited by dragonewt
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I was working with the MW instance of the tool during the weekend and this gave me the chance to review my code and better understand what kind of differences there are between the systems. Implementing a proper mapping support would require a significant refactoring of the whole code base. This is a bit too big of an effort right now, so unfortunately I have to bury this idea for the time being. (I'm not saying, it won't happen ever, but don't hold your breath.)

On the bright side, Magic World instance of the tool is now available at http://ouropa.planeetta.com/rq_tools/mw_enemygen/. Try it out and let me know how does it work for you.

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