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What is the status of RQ6 Glorantha?

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I guess I'm just exasperated that there's no single BRP standard-bearer anymore.

D&D-like games have, well, D&D (with the unpopularity of 4th edition giving rise to Pathfinder and the OSR as alternatives).  The Storyteller/Storytelling system, second edition, extracted out a core system, with a subsequent upgrade; it's not as popular as it was, but that's not a fault in the design.  GURPS has gone through a few versions and a plethora of world books, but several years ago SJG put out 4th edition which (mostly) reconciled differences, consolidated redundancies, and provided a stable base for variations.  Tunnels & Trolls, maybe the second oldest FRPG, has gone through several versions, but at least there's a linear order (even if version 6 never really happened) with the occasional branch.  Cypher System is only a few years old, with only two mostly-compatible variations, but they felt the need for a general Cypher System Rulebook anyway.

According to Chaosium's new plan, they're going back to a regime of The Glorantha Game, the Lovecraft Game, and a generic booklet (maybe).  Meanwhile, the Design Mechanism, D101, Mongoose, Alephtar (soon), and whoever else have their own takes on the same basic mechanics.  Chaosium letting a thousand flowers bloom (maybe) worked in the 1980s when tabletop RPGs were popular yet insular.  In the 2010s having several variations of the same thing, some ultra-specialized and others competing in the same "general system" space, seems destined to create even smaller niches in an already niche market.  And time and attention are scarcer resources than they used to be.  They're competing not only with vendors in the same ecosystem, but potentially with themselves.

Honestly, I wish them well, and if I have the money I'll pick up RuneQuest 2016 (or 2017, or 2018 ...).  It's just that the BGB started to bring all the variations of the same ideas together, and now the variations are drifting further apart than ever.  If this keeps up BRP/d100 will turn into Fudge, just an oddball die convention with suggestions for use.

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3 hours ago, fmitchell said:

I guess I'm just exasperated that there's no single BRP standard-bearer anymore.

D&D-like games have, well, D&D (with the unpopularity of 4th edition giving rise to Pathfinder and the OSR as alternatives).

Food for thought: No such thing as D&D.

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This is disappointing

I like RQ6 its better than the Legend version I had been using for my 14th century game

I played the original RQ in Duck tower ect many many years ago, I wasn't a fan of the setting but parts of the rules I did like compared to D&D

 

Looks like I will be staying with DM and whatever they call their Creation.

I have no interest or cash to buy in to another version and RQ^ does all I want it to do with great flexibility. 

 

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12 hours ago, fmitchell said:

I guess I'm just exasperated that there's no single BRP standard-bearer anymore.

I'm not sure that we need a single BRP standard-bearer as all of the d100 variants are more-or-less compatible with each other. They are nowhere near as crunchy as D&D 3.5 / Pathfinder and it's easy to mix and match elements from different d100 games. The question of whether they are "open" or not is only important if you are a publisher.

One advantage that D&D 3.5 / Pathfinder have is the existence of an official SRD that all variants (even OSR retrogames) take as a starting point. For us, the closest thing is probably the MRQI SRD - which is the point at which OpenQuest and Rennaissance branch off from RQ. MRQ II / Legend / RQ 6 can be seen as improvements upon this core system.

Having said that, the new strategy from Chaosium does seem quite odd. I have a suspicion that they regard the idea that anybody might want to use RQ with anything but Glorantha with a kind of puzzled incomprehension. While it's a good move to leverage Glorantha where appropriate, the fact that there are many RQ campaigns that don't use that setting should also be recogniized. There is a danger that those who are primarily interested in Glorantha will gravitate towards Chaosium while those who want a more generic fantasy system will stick with Design Mechanism. I just worry that Chaosium may overestimate the number of people for whom Runequest = Glorantha (and nothing but Glorantha)!

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The thing that I don't really get is that, on the Glorantha website, the "Required Reading" lists a bunch of Classic Mythology texts from a variety of cultures, along with fictional fantasy too. It's basically suggesting that you ought to look into a variety of myths and fantasy novels to fully appreciate Glorantha as a setting. Yet, this is pretty much what is being offered up by TDM and others via the generic set of rules. Surely having these titles all being compatible with RuneQuest/Glorantha would enhance it's value?

Anyway, I'm due to travel soon so I guess the last thing I'll say is this: It's now clear that BRP/RQ can never be a fully unified set of rules but hopefully the moniker of it being a 'family' of games will continue without acrimony and tribalism.

I hope that we see more standalone products in the future rather than more "generic core rules books", to cut out all the issues of varying creative visions and business plans. If people happen to recognise that rules and systems are similar then all great but my personal model is titles like Clockwork and Chivalry which gave up trying to associate itself with a third party set of rules and just made a whole game with its own rules. Independent and complete.

OGL/Open License/Unified systems simply don't work that well for RQ/BRP based on all the evidence we have seen over the last decade or so.

Have a nice Christmas everybody!

 

 

 

Edited by TrippyHippy
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4 hours ago, Chris said:

I like RQ6 its better than the Legend version I had been using for my 14th century game

That's hardly surprising. RQ 6 is an incremental improvement on MRQ II that benefits from a few years of actual experience in play, whereas Legend is basically MRQ II with the serial numbers filed off. We owe Matt some gratitude for believing in the system enough to release it uunder the OGL rather than let it fall out of print, but it would have been better had Mongoose spent some time polishing the MRQ II system before re-releasing it under the new name. MRQ II is a HUGE improvement over MRQ I, but there was still room for improvement.

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15 hours ago, fmitchell said:

I guess I'm just exasperated that there's no single BRP standard-bearer anymore.

I  understand your point of view, but I am actually glad there isn't an 800 pound Gorilla in the d100 world. The D&D ecosystem is mostly just D&D and various designers interpretations of what they want D&D to be like. The BRP scene has never been dominated by Runequest, which has given it freedom to grow in many directions. 

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7 hours ago, TrippyHippy said:

OGL/Open License/Unified systems simply don't work that well for RQ/BRP based on all the evidence we have seen over the last decade or so.

Legend, Renaissance and OpenQuest are still going strong and producing supplements, all are OGL versions of D100 games. A number of third party publishers have been producing some good work for Legend.

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7 hours ago, TrippyHippy said:

I hope that we see more standalone products in the future rather than more "generic core rules books", to cut out all the issues of varying creative visions and business plans. If people happen to recognise that rules and systems are similar then all great but my personal model is titles like Clockwork and Chivalry which gave up trying to associate itself with a third party set of rules and just made a whole game with its own rules. Independent and complete.

I really cannot understand why these two strategies cannot co-exist. Having a setting free core book does not prevent the creation of variants of that game with the rules included with the setting.

This two-fold approach to publishing works very well with both Fate and Savage Worlds, systems which have gained a lot of momentum over the last years. And they use both the Core + Supplement strategy with two different Fate core rulebooks, the "lite" one and the complete one, and several volumes of Worlds of Fate, and the Complete Game approach with splendid games such as Dresden Files or Mindjammer.

You seem to assume that in order for your favourite all-in-one-book kind of game to exist, you need to have fewer games of the core+setting type, or better even no game of that type. But is it really true?

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1 hour ago, soltakss said:

Legend, Renaissance and OpenQuest are still going strong and producing supplements, all are OGL versions of D100 games. A number of third party publishers have been producing some good work for Legend.

Last product I bought using the Renaissance rules was Dark Streets. Last product I bought using the OpenQuest system was Rivers of Heaven. Both are standalone products. Makes my point for me.

Legend only continues to sell because Mongoose practically give it away at $1. I cannot recall the last supplement for the game that even registered (Mongoose focus much, much more on their Traveller line these days).

Quote

This two-fold approach to publishing works very well with both Fate and Savage Worlds, systems which have gained a lot of momentum over the last years. And they use both the Core + Supplement strategy with two different Fate core rulebooks, the "lite" one and the complete one, and several volumes of Worlds of Fate, and the Complete Game approach with splendid games such as Dresden Files or Mindjammer.

Neither Savage Worlds or Fate have to compete against more 'official' versions of themselves.

RuneQuest/BRP/Legend/OpenQuest/Renaissance/d100 Revolution/TDMs New Game doesn't really get that luxury. That's the problem. Make new games, not new system references, and let the qualities of the complete games stand on their own two feet.

Anyway, just setting off now to go on my Xmas hols. Wish everybody the best till New Year!

 

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And now for the defensive rebuttal portion of the thread ...

18 hours ago, dragonewt said:

Food for thought: No such thing as D&D.

I wasn't talking about "the D&D at the table", which is always different from the rules as written.  (As is every set of rules.)  I'm talking about an Official World's Most Popular Game(tm), which at least has the virtue of giving everyone something to react against.  From what I can tell, 5th edition did a hard reboot back to AD&D 2nd edition, then incorporated better mechanics from the d20 era (and maybe 4e).  Which sounds a little like what Chaosium is trying to do.

 

8 hours ago, Prime Evil said:

... all of the d100 variants are more-or-less compatible with each other. They are nowhere near as crunchy as D&D 3.5 / Pathfinder and it's easy to mix and match elements from different d100 games.

Which is what I find so frustrating about the whole thing.  At the core, all the d100 variants are far more similar than they are different (yes, even CoC 7).  The rest are just details.  What's the skill for ducking out of the way?  Dodge?  Evade?  Something else?  What's the skill for swinging a sword?  Calming a crowd?  Walking across a rope bridge?  How do you define a Critical?  A Special Success, if such a thing exists?  A Fumble?  Who goes first in combat?  How do you figure out the penalty for X?  What are the effects of damage?  How do skills improve?  And so forth.  It would be nice to have a standard vocabulary for all of these, even if some GM/publisher somewhere decides for whatever reason that Sense, Listen, and Search are now a single skill called Perception, or that players only get K improvement rolls per session, or even that basic characteristics are now percentiles for some mad reason.

The structure of the BGB was great: here's the "default" game, and here are options you can mix and match for your game.  Maybe "BRP Essentials" will be the new version of that, only instead of options players and GMs get minimal mechanics they can extend or revise however they like ... which is BRP's greatest strength.  As a rules tinkerer, though, I'd like to see the 30+ years of options in one place, as deltas to the "basic rules".

 

5 hours ago, Baulderstone said:

I  understand your point of view, but I am actually glad there isn't an 800 pound Gorilla in the d100 world.

So am I, but that's not what I'm talking about.  Other companies own their house systems, so that they can decide what, say, Tunnels & Trolls, the Storytelling System, HERO, GURPS, the Cypher System, or whatever is.  WotC let the cat out of the bag with the d20 SRD, but for better or worse they control the D&D brand so that when someone says D&D (and maybe a version number) nearly everyone knows what they're referring to.  It would help explain games to newbies if we could at least say that Call of Cthulhu, RuneQuest, BRP, OpenQuest, Legend, DesignQuest (or whatever), and everything else have the same core rule engine, and it's called ... something?

The Chaosium alumni rallying around the sick man of gaming was an ideal opportunity to rally behind one RuneQuest / BRP / d100 going forward.  Instead, as the XKCD cartoon I linked to above predicted, the answer to all the RuneQuest / BRP / d100 variations is apparently yet another RuneQuest different from all previous RuneQuests / d100s now on the market.  And I guess now we Let The Market Decide ... although, to quote Benjamin Franklin, "If we don't hang together ...".

 

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On 7 December 2015 at 8:29 AM, Prime Evil said:

I wonder whether Design Mechanism could create a generic system based upon the RQ 6 engine. Luther Arkwright and the Firearms supplement suggest that it would be possible. Given that BRP seems top be going into quasi-hibernation for a while, there may be a niche for such a game. 

This. Totally this.

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56 minutes ago, RosenMcStern said:

This two-fold approach to publishing works very well with both Fate and Savage Worlds, systems which have gained a lot of momentum over the last years. And they use both the Core + Supplement strategy with two different Fate core rulebooks, the "lite" one and the complete one, and several volumes of Worlds of Fate, and the Complete Game approach with splendid games such as Dresden Files or Mindjammer.

I agree. I don't understand why BRP doesn't follow the GURPS/Savage Worlds/ Fate model in this respect. This is what I hoped the BGB would have achieved.

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On 12/7/2015 at 6:33 PM, Akrasia said:

What has yet to be explained is why anyone at Chaosium thinks that there is a real demand for a fourth version of RuneQuest in less than a decade.

Their recent statements have included stray comments to the effect that, in Chaosium's mind, RQ == Glorantha and the setting and rules should reinforce each other.  None of the previous RQ versions of the last decade fit that view, therefore they must create a new edition which does.

On 12/7/2015 at 11:29 PM, Prime Evil said:

I wonder whether Design Mechanism could create a generic system based upon the RQ 6 engine.

Some of us consider the RQ6 engine to already be a generic system.

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5 hours ago, fmitchell said:

The structure of the BGB was great: here's the "default" game, and here are options you can mix and match for your game.  Maybe "BRP Essentials" will be the new version of that, only instead of options players and GMs get minimal mechanics they can extend or revise however they like ... which is BRP's greatest strength.  As a rules tinkerer, though, I'd like to see the 30+ years of options in one place, as deltas to the "basic rules".

As someone with 30 years of BRP under my belt, I like the BGB. However, it's a 

5 hours ago, fmitchell said:

 

So am I, but that's not what I'm talking about.  Other companies own their house systems, so that they can decide what, say, Tunnels & Trolls, the Storytelling System, HERO, GURPS, the Cypher System, or whatever is.  WotC let the cat out of the bag with the d20 SRD, but for better or worse they control the D&D brand so that when someone says D&D (and maybe a version number) nearly everyone knows what they're referring to.  It would help explain games to newbies if we could at least say that Call of Cthulhu, RuneQuest, BRP, OpenQuest, Legend, DesignQuest (or whatever), and everything else have the same core rule engine, and it's called ... something?

I've spent enough time in D&D forums to know that D&D has one of the most brutal, divided fanbases of any RPG. Because there is always one official, sanctioned edition of the game. people playing other versions develop a lot of hate for it, and players of that version can get defensive and lash out at other versions. The whole OSR vs. Pathfinder vs. D&D thing that went on for years is due to the fact that having an "official" version doesn't make the fans magically agree with it. It just makes them more contentious about what version is the official one. 

5 hours ago, fmitchell said:

The Chaosium alumni rallying around the sick man of gaming was an ideal opportunity to rally behind one RuneQuest / BRP / d100 going forward.  Instead, as the XKCD cartoon I linked to above predicted, the answer to all the RuneQuest / BRP / d100 variations is apparently yet another RuneQuest different from all previous RuneQuests / d100s now on the market.  And I guess now we Let The Market Decide ... although, to quote Benjamin Franklin, "If we don't hang together ...".

 

No matter what Chaosium does the their new version of RuneQuest, the community is never going to unite around it. For example, Pete and Loz were on board because it was using their preferred version of the rules. When that changed, they moved on to focus on making their own products using that preferred version. Delta Green just finished its successful Kickstarter, and it's not about to drop its variant. Revolution D100 is taking the system in new directions. I don't think Renaissance would have converted over either. 

As in evolution, having a diversity of systems is healthy. Most people playing BRP can find a variant that suits them, which keeps them inside the system. Let's compare RQ6 and Magic World fans. Because RQ6 is supported by another company, fans of it the reject Chaosium's approach have TDM to go to. On the other hand, Magic World is just dead. I know a couple of people that are taking a break from BRP entirely over that. If there was another company making a Magic World clone, they would still be playing. 

It's worth remembering that lots of people support multiple companies as well. I don't play OpenQuest, but I buy OpenQuest games to strip for parts. 

My basic problem with what you are saying is that you are operating from the viewpoint that BRP is sick. RQ6 has been a successful product, and the system is continuing even without the licensed name. Call of Cthulhu has a strong fanbase as seen from its Kickstarter and the Delta Green one. RuneQuest 2 has a strong kickstarter going. I'm not seeing anything wrong here. Now, Chaosium the company was sickly, and had been for a long, long time. Fortunately, other companies kept the torch lit during those times. The system stayed healthy because it is scattered. 

Another issue I have with having a "standard" is that it assumes BRP is done and mounted on the wall. The second you can codify every variant of BRP in a book, it means the system is over. BRP isn't over. RQ6 added some cool innovations. Delta Green adds new things as well. Revolution D100 is taking the system in new directions. As long as BRP is thriving, any attempt to fully catalog it will be incomplete within a year, and I like things that way. 

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14 hours ago, TrippyHippy said:

I hope that we see more standalone products in the future rather than more "generic core rules books", to cut out all the issues of varying creative visions and business plans. If people happen to recognise that rules and systems are similar then all great but my personal model is titles like Clockwork and Chivalry which gave up trying to associate itself with a third party set of rules and just made a whole game with its own rules. Independent and complete.

That's exactly the approach that Jeff Richard spoke of at Dragonmeet, the approach that the new Chaosium seems to be adopting. Jeff said specifically that he didn't want people to have to buy separate BRP rulebook to go with a game system, so that's why Mythic Iceland will contain the BRP rules. And he gave RuneQuest (i.e. the new Chaosium version) as another example of a BRP-based game with integrated rules.

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13 minutes ago, Baulderstone said:

...Let's compare RQ6 and Magic World fans. Because RQ6 is supported by another company, fans of it the reject Chaosium's approach have TDM to go to. On the other hand, Magic World is just dead. I know a couple of people that are taking a break from BRP entirely over that. If there was another company making a Magic World clone, they would still be playing.  

I really must take another look at my musings of what can be achieved with the Legend OGL and d100ii SRD's in relation to cloning Magic World...

Nick

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9 minutes ago, Steve said:

That's exactly the approach that Jeff Richard spoke of at Dragonmeet, the approach that the new Chaosium seems to be adopting. Jeff said specifically that he didn't want people to have to buy separate BRP rulebook to go with a game system, so that's why Mythic Iceland will contain the BRP rules. And he gave RuneQuest (i.e. the new Chaosium version) as another example of a BRP-based game with integrated rules.

"Don't forget, <RuneQuest> came before BRP..."

:P

Nick

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1 hour ago, NickMiddleton said:

I really must take another look at my musings of what can be achieved with the Legend OGL and d100ii SRD's in relation to cloning Magic World...

Nick

I think this is totally doable. 

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I'll be getting RQ6 Glorantha, but I already own a hard and a softcover copies of DMRQ6, so I wish they had just published AiG instead. (It kills me that they actually published a few copies that most people will never see!!!) I was so waiting for that!!

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12 hours ago, nDervish said:

Their recent statements have included stray comments to the effect that, in Chaosium's mind, RQ == Glorantha and the setting and rules should reinforce each other.  None of the previous RQ versions of the last decade fit that view, therefore they must create a new edition which does.

Some of us consider the RQ6 engine to already be a generic system.

Glorantha is an amazing setting that deserves to be recognized as one of the finest feats of worldbuilding that the roleplaying industry has produced. In that sense, I'd rate it alongside M.A.R. Barker's Tékumel, N. Robin Crossby's Hârn, and Terry Amthor's Kulthea. However, I strongly prefer campaign settings to be independent of rule systems so that it is easier to use them with whatever system the GM prefers. In my opinion, locking any game system exclusively to a particular setting is a mistake - except in the rare cases that the system is designed around the unique requirements of the setting (e.g. Eclipse Phase, Unknown Armies, etc). This is not the case with Glorantha, which is often played as a quasi-generic swords and sandals setting in practice.   

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The new edition of RuneQuest is built around the unique requirements of the setting and the hint is in the name.

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2 minutes ago, Jeff said:

The new edition of RuneQuest is built around the unique requirements of the setting and the hint is in the name.

So, actually questing for the runes. That will interesting after all those years of RQ not being that much about the runes.

Actually, MRQ1 tried to do that in a way but it did not work.   

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48 minutes ago, Jeff said:

I can't really say any more at this time without giving away the show.

Jeepers looks like we'll have to get you across again for another UK RPG convention. That'll get the show started!

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