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New Rq Design Notes - Part 7


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Sounds great! I wonder how specific the character generation "life path" is? If you want to generate characters at a different time than 1627, would you have to make up your own, or is it generic enough that it can generate a character anywhere, anywhen? Or is it, as it seems to hint, that the lifepath bit is separate from the numbers generation bit?

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Well the RQ3 example if off. Back then there was a cap on how high your could raise a skill with previous experience. 

32 minutes ago, Mugen said:

15% manipulation bonus, and starting characters that can have weapon skill up to 95% ?

I like that. :D

Will you like it when all the NPC warriors you run into have it? It seems a little too quick and easy. 

 

Oh, and the "here's a secret" bit is wrong. You could never create such experienced characters in RQ3, because skills with a check box couldn't be increased beyond 75% through previous experience.  

Edited by Atgxtg

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

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27 minutes ago, Atgxtg said:

Well the RQ3 example if off. Back then there was a cap on how high your could raise a skill with previous experience. 

Will you like it when all the NPC warriors you run into have it? It seems a little too quick and easy.

Yes, I like the idea that PCs and NPCs have a chance to reach this value. :)

27 minutes ago, Atgxtg said:

Oh, and the "here's a secret" bit is wrong. You could never create such experienced characters in RQ3, because skills with a check box couldn't be increased beyond 75% through previous experience.  

Really ?
I thought this rule was only for the quick creation system, and not the detailed one. So, barbarian warriors aged 20+ were very likely to have more than 75% in their weapon skills, thanks to their x4 multiplier...

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9 minutes ago, Mugen said:

Really ?

I thought this rule was only for the quick creation system, and not the detailed one. So, barbarian warriors aged 20+ were very likely to have more than 75% in their weapon skills, thanks to their x4 multiplier...

You are correct. There was NO 75% cap in the Experience By Occupation rules. The cap was in the Quick Experience System.

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I like the idea to start at low level and to build a character step by step, learning by doing. What we become is not always what we wanted to and the life often offers us unexpected chances (or unwanted constraints). I like the same for player characters, and even if having a rough idea of what I want him to be, I want to discover what he actually becomes, and how and why. I also like to become scared by a mere wolf or a pack or rubble runners, and to loaugh at this after a few years of adventuring. But the 2. rpg trope is that character improvement is veeeeeery slow, to slow IMHO, and I hate it too. You're right, it shall be possible to be a weapon master after 4 years of war, and even to start with. But I'd like to have the option as well to start as a newbie, but having a much faster improvement pace as what RPGs usually propose, at least at lower skills levels.

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Wind on the Steppes, role playing among the steppe Nomads. The  running campaign and the blog

 

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I have a question about the example in the design note. How can you tell again that she is ascetic? Is that the something that is a characteristic of Death in the sense of separation? If so, does this mean that an ascetic in the Kralorelan highlands would be strong in Death?

SDLeary

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No, it's a misstatement to imply that the books definitively instruct you to associate asceticism with the death rune.  I think he was just riffing off of what HQ2/HQG do say about it.

Anyway,

1. there are concepts such as creation, trickery and others that are associated with more than one rune and

2. some concepts don't have a particularly strong association with any rune. In the context of personality and behavior I would not trust the core runes to fulfill anyone's desire for a complete psychological inventory.  They're just not that great for that purpose.  Maybe they could become such if as much fluff were written about them as say the western zodiac, but realistically I think that's neither here nor there.  Meanwhile HeroQuest and Chaosium RuneQuest have spaces on the character sheet for personality traits that aren't runes.

 

What really happened?  The only way to discover that is to experience it yourself.

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Ascetic isn't a huge stretch in some contexts, like if you think about how the owner of the life rune is Uleria.  It makes sense to infer that a vow of chastity, in particular, would increase your death rune affinity.  It just doesn't stretch so far as to cleanly apply to every association one might have with the idea of asceticism.  

Edited by Roko Joko

What really happened?  The only way to discover that is to experience it yourself.

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In this day and age of pulpy systems like FATE and such, I kind of like the old school approach of 'zero to hero', although I must admit we often tended to start with PCs of at least moderate experience to increase their survivability.

I like how the BGB gave you different char gen points based on whether the characters were novices, seasoned, veteran, experts, etc

I assume that the new RQ will take a similar approach. The main thing is that there is some way to account for starting with experienced PCs instead of forcing everyone to start with novice dirt crawlers

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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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As an aside on this, I don't believe that a 21 year old in Glorantha - or in any ancient setting - is a novice dirt crawler. Now my parents both grew up on farms, and I have a lot of farmer relatives, and believe me when I say that a 15 year old who grows up farming can be remarkably skilled at that. Same thing with young scribes. I think we project modern Western assumptions about youth onto ancient settings. And we consider our youth to be unskilled and largely useless (that being said, I have met soldiers who were only 19 or 20 years old who were amazingly skilled at what they do).

In the pre-modern world, we have more examples of people who were already "heroes" at a remarkably young age. Alexander was 22 years old (a starting RQ character) when he fought the Battle of the Granicus - do we really think he did not have a mastery of Battle, Orate, Ride, or Lance attack? Napoleon was 26 when he conquered Italy. Harald Hardrada was a noted warrior at 15 years old. And by age 18 was one of the most successful captains of the Varangian Guard, having fought all the way to the Euphrates. Edward the Black Prince was 16 when he commanded the vanguard of the English Army at Crecy. Now those are all extraordinary characters, but they are the sort of characters imagined in RQ.

Additionally, RQ2 was quite explicit that your adventurer was not the "ordinary, average Joe" - you were the stuff who might "become a Hero, to take one's place in the Hero Wars." And the rules stated it is Perfectly All Right to throw out any character whose characteristics were across the board average or even slightly above average.

I've always liked being able to start with characters who can be good at what they are supposed to do (even if what they are good at is useless in adventuring - something I love about Call of Cthulhu) and the new RuneQuest will reflect that.

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22 minutes ago, skoll said:

If a new character can have her combat skill at 95%, is there room for improvement? How do you improve skills beyond 100%? What are the benefits of having your skill over 100%?

And when two characters with combat skills of 95% meet each other in battle, how will it play out? Does one need to roll a crit to win?

Once you are over 100% (and yes, you can improve beyond 100% although it is slower), you can split attacks (useful against multiple unskilled opponents) and you get a steadily improved chance of special and critical attacks.

And this is Glorantha - when two characters with combat skills of 95% meet each other in battle, the one with better magic usually wins.

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1 hour ago, Jeff said:

In the pre-modern world, we have more examples of people who were already "heroes" at a remarkably young age. Alexander was 22 years old (a starting RQ character) when he fought the Battle of the Granicus - do we really think he did not have a mastery of Battle, Orate, Ride, or Lance attack? Napoleon was 26 when he conquered Italy. Harald Hardrada was a noted warrior at 15 years old. And by age 18 was one of the most successful captains of the Varangian Guard, having fought all the way to the Euphrates. Edward the Black Prince was 16 when he commanded the vanguard of the English Army at Crecy.

The youngest of these probably had good advisors, but were crucial for the morale fo the troops. I'm not sure they were heroes because of their proficiency in a skill. Just like the 18-year old Jeanne d'Arc who led armies to victory without any knowledge of war (or any proficiency in whatever). Being a hero is not realy related to skill: the others make a hero of you.

1 hour ago, Jeff said:

Additionally, RQ2 was quite explicit that your adventurer was not the "ordinary, average Joe" - you were the stuff who might "become a Hero, to take one's place in the Hero W

"become a hero". If I remember well, this was about characteritics, so they mean having the potential to become a hero. Not start as such. "The Adventurer progresses in this way until he's so proficient that he comes to the attention of the High Priest...At this point, he has an option to join a Rune Cult" (RQ2, Introduction).

This is one of the fun in the game. As usual, it is a matter of taste (my favorite statement...), and if you like to start with a multi-90%-skilled character, that's fine for me, there is no good or bad way to play. I only wished there was an option left for players who prefer to start at lower level and see their PC grow up to expert and hero status. Like Frodo or Bilbo. Like in old RQ2. Just to leave the choice. Do the rules allow that ?

Now, starting a player with only a couple of good proficiencies could be an acceptable trade-off as well. It is true that children were raised to hold their future rank in the society and as such had a good proficinecy in usefull skills. They still had to learn in the real life, mostly with the help of a mentor.

How many high level skills (>75%) do the rule allow for starting characters  ?

Wind on the Steppes, role playing among the steppe Nomads. The  running campaign and the blog

 

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5 minutes ago, Zit said:

How many high level skills (>75%) do the rule allow for starting characters  ?

I rarely see a character made with more than one skill above 80%. Two if from a nomadic culture (Ride gets high very easy for nomads, as it starts at 40% instead of 5%, and if you add 30% as a professional warrior, plus put the maximum number of personal points into it that gets you to 90%), but since Ride is primarily a limiting skill (your other abilities are limited by your Ride) it needs to be very high if you do everything while mounted.

But more often what I see is characters picking one skill they want to be really good at, and then a cluster of 2 or 3 skills in the 65-79%range. Then a bigger cluster in the 55-65% range, with the rest being in the under 50%. So frex, a Lunar dart warrior character started with one skill at 92% (2H Spear), two skills at 77 (Dagger and Composite Bow), and a cluster of skills between 51 and 77 (Climb, Hide, Sneak, Scan). Her passions were quite strong with her loyalty to the Red Emperor being 85% and her Fear of Dragons being 80.

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5 minutes ago, Zit said:

The youngest of these probably had good advisors, but were crucial for the morale fo the troops. I'm not sure they were heroes because of their proficiency in a skill. Just like the 18-year old Jeanne d'Arc who led armies to victory without any knowledge of war (or any proficiency in whatever). Being a hero is not realy related to skill: the others make a hero of you.

Standing on the shoulders of giants helped make people look Heroic at an early age their life, and this happens again and again throughout history. From Einstein proposing Special Relativity from 26 years old, to the Heroes listed by Jeff transforming the world in different ways. All have a skill that is special within the context of the time that can Heroically transform the society we live in. Jeanne d'Arc's might have been Oratory?

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I am certainly happy you can start as expert skilled characters, but I would prefer having the choice of different experience levels in the char gen process.

Starting at a heroic level can be alot of fun, but starting much less profficient also has its charms. 

One of the things I enjoyed back in the RQ2/RQ3 days was having characters surviving by the skin of their teeth, patchwork armour, scrambling around for every coin or salvage good. Threats were not always fantastical, they were often just human level, and a party of Uz was a greatly feared encounter. 

It sometimes felt more like Mad Max more than The Iliad, and I really liked that. 

'Zero to Hero' does have a niche, so it would be good if different starting experience ranges are an option I think, even if the focus in more on experts (I guess it is the start of The Hero Wars). 

The other thing I really like with RQ is the tactile flavour of combat, so I am happy to see that this sounds like it is remaining. Streamlining combat by losing Hit Locations wasnt the best move for the Elric! line in my opinion, so I'm happy to see alot of the juicy stuff from RQ2 remaining for this new edition.

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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Always keep in mind a person with a 90% or even 120% skill is not a Hero. A Hero is someone who has bridged the mortal world and the Gods World through their deeds (pretty much always through heroquesting). And given the reality of magic in RuneQuest a character with a 75% combat skill but with 6+ Rune points with a war god (Babeester Gor, Humakt, Maran Gor, Orlanth, Storm Bull etc) is likely going to beat the character with 125% combat but only 3 Rune points (a starting character has 3 Rune points). 

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29 minutes ago, Mankcam said:

One of the things I enjoyed back in the RQ2/RQ3 days was having characters surviving by the skin of their teeth, patchwork armour, scrambling around for every coin or salvage good. Threats were not always fantastical, they were often just human level, and a party of Uz was a greatly feared encounter. 

May be all this is only old school nostalgia of old grognards (as many of us are). But how many of us have now enough game time to raise a beginner to the hero status ?

 

17 minutes ago, Jeff said:

Always keep in mind a person with a 90% or even 120% skill is not a Hero. A Hero is someone who has bridged the mortal world and the Gods World through their deeds (pretty much always through heroquesting). And given the reality of magic in RuneQuest a character with a 75% combat skill but with 6+ Rune points with a war god (Babeester Gor, Humakt, Maran Gor, Orlanth, Storm Bull etc) is likely going to beat the character with 125% combat but only 3 Rune points (a starting character has 3 Rune points). 

ok,so in the new RQ, we don't play beginning humans but beginning heroes instead :). I'm fine with it as well. Does it mean that true improvement comes actually more through runequesting than skill progress ?

Wind on the Steppes, role playing among the steppe Nomads. The  running campaign and the blog

 

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1 hour ago, Mankcam said:

I am certainly happy you can start as expert skilled characters, but I would prefer having the choice of different experience levels in the char gen process.

This isn't something, where you break the game completely, if you don't follow the rules. In the end it's always up to the GM to decide how experienced the characters are when they start out.

But I'm with you - I do enjoy seeing my character overcome obstacles and improving in the process. I feel it makes me appreciate more the heroic skills once I have them.

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