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What was your favourite version of RQ to date and why?


Jon Hunter

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OK mine at the time was RQII, I really didn't like RQ3 when it came out.

In hindsight I think RQ3 was a better system,.

Reasons for not liking RQ3 at that start were,  

  • Not being glorantha based - especially bloody awful games workshop version
  • Bloody awful scenarios and supplements - Compared to Borderlands, Griffin Mountain, Pavis & Big Rubble & Trollpack, Cults of Terror and Cults of Prax
  • No blade venom rules
  • Spirit magic not always working
  • No decent cult write ups
  • Medievil west

Reason I converted over time

  • RQ3 Renaissance stuff was excellent
  • The systems more subtle 
  • The system seems more logically consistent
  • RQ2 mechanics started to date and seem clunky
  • It gave a wider sense of Glorantha
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I was introduced to RuneQuest with its first french edition (based on 3rd edition), and it was my go-to medieval fantasy game for 20 years.

As a result, I've never played a lot in Glorantha, as it was very difficult to grasp the setting with what was available in french. Gods of Glorantha was excellent, but Glorantha:Crucible of the Hero Wars lacked focus on specific areas.

It would be difficult for me to say which edition is my favorite nowadays, as I'm torn between RQ3, RQ6, OpenQuest (which I view as an authentic RQ edition) and StormBringer 2nd edition (which was my first BRP game), and if I wanted to play a "RuneQuest" game nowadays, It would be with a mix of all 4 games, with bits from D100 Revolution.

More precisely, I would use:
-RQ6 base skills value based on 2 stats,
-D100 Revolution limited number of skills with specialties,
-D100 Revolution generic conflict resolution,
-StormBringer Major Wounds, with effects based on RQ6 rules for major and severe wounds,
-A mix between RQ6, OQ and Sandy Petersen's rules for Sorcery,
-RQ6 Special Effects for Combat.

I would NOT use the following:
-RQ2 or RQ3 Strike Ranks,
-Localized Hit Points,
-Skill bonuses.

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Sounds more a heavily houseruled Rd100 to me rather than a mix :) Point #1 is not unique to RQ6, it is shared by Rd100 and OQ as well. Points #4, #5 and #6 are features definitely present in Revolution D100 (the rules for major and severe wounds in Rd100 are the same as in RQ6, and Rd100 Sorcery _is_ based on Sandy's), you are just opting for "the way that feature is implemented in another version of D100" rather than a different feature. But what you are describing is a "limited skill list, no location, effect-based combat" ruleset, which is closer to Rd100 than to any other implementation.

Back from threadjacking, I would say that my favourite versions of RQ (BGB and OpenQuest are excluded, as they never wore the RQ badge, while Mythras did) are:

- RQ3 for high fantasy

- RQ6 for Sword&Sorcery or historical

 

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I think RQ2 had a more 'arts and crafts' old school-y feel to it.  I can see why some people like it, particularly those who learned on it.  It's the same thing for OSR D&D - it'll always have a place in my heart, but I don't play it.

I think as a comprehensive, cogent rules system, RQ3 was the most solid for me.   Plus, I liked sorcery.  I know it's anathema here, but honestly - I could take or leave Glorantha, so that being omitted from RQ3 wasn't a big deal for me.  Didn't love RQ Earth, but built my own and it was fine at that time in my life.

I liked many of the ideas in RQ6, so I've pillaged that for stuff.

TBH the version we play is so heavily houseruled, we jokingly call it RQ3.9.  Have cheerfully bolted on cruft from RQ2, RQ:AiG, Sandy's Sorcery, Sandy's RQ Tekumel stuff, RQ6 - my game is more or less Pidgin RQ, a mishmash of everything.

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1 hour ago, styopa said:

I think RQ2 had a more 'arts and crafts' old school-y feel to it.  I can see why some people like it, particularly those who learned on it.  It's the same thing for OSR D&D - it'll always have a place in my heart, but I don't play it.

Interesting that you should use the D&D analogy.   I'd thought of a similar one, only to the completely opposite effect:

D&D to AD&D was a quantum leap; rules were fleshed out and a great deal more detail was added, and TSR went to the hardbound format.  RQ2 to 3, not so much.  The negative buzz around RQ3's release wasn't a great sign, and when I got around to reading some of it I was less than impressed.  Sorcery didn't add anything at all for me.  (There's really no need for players to create spells, and never has been, in RQ or the vast majority of other RPG's.  If they want to do that, they can run their own game.)  The fatigue/encumbrance system is a joke unless you're into PC-menhirs, the rulebooks were made for planned obsolescence, and RQ2 worked just fine and actually had campaign packs.  RQ3 also didn't have the Gloranthan flavor, which was what drew me to RQ2 in the first place..

By then I'd experienced the BRP games, and pretty much every one of them was more interesting to me than RQ3.  (Of course, it helped that I'm a big Niven, Moorcock, and Lovecraft fan.)  I didn't want a rewarmed version of what I already had, in any event.  If I was going to get a new game system, it would have to be just that...which led eventually to WFRP.    By that point, RQ3 was relegated to the ash heap of history, until the Gloranthan campaigns came out, and even those I converted to RQ2 with a minimum of effort.

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1 hour ago, RosenMcStern said:

Sounds more a heavily houseruled Rd100 to me rather than a mix :) Point #1 is not unique to RQ6, it is shared by Rd100 and OQ as well. Points #4, #5 and #6 are features definitely present in Revolution D100 (the rules for major and severe wounds in Rd100 are the same as in RQ6, and Rd100 Sorcery _is_ based on Sandy's), you are just opting for "the way that feature is implemented in another version of D100" rather than a different feature. But what you are describing is a "limited skill list, no location, effect-based combat" ruleset, which is closer to Rd100 than to any other implementation.

 

You're certainly right. Rd100 is full of options I find natural when thinking about BRP.

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1 hour ago, RosenMcStern said:

Sounds more a heavily houseruled Rd100 to me rather than a mix :) Point #1 is not unique to RQ6, it is shared by Rd100 and OQ as well. Points #4, #5 and #6 are features definitely present in Revolution D100 (the rules for major and severe wounds in Rd100 are the same as in RQ6, and Rd100 Sorcery _is_ based on Sandy's), you are just opting for "the way that feature is implemented in another version of D100" rather than a different feature. But what you are describing is a "limited skill list, no location, effect-based combat" ruleset, which is closer to Rd100 than to any other implementation.

 

You're certainly right. Rd100 is full of options I find natural when thinking about BRP.

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Favorite Version of RuneQuest : I could say Herowars My RQ III ! (yeah we all love customizing)

Actually, I prefer as base system RuneQuest III for it systems, logic and very unique kind of magic. To detail what I like in

  • Combat : Strike Ranks, Weapons special effects and Localisation.
  • System : Skill's bonuses, fatigue and tick box (no XP to manage).
  • Magic : Sorcery was just a perfect discovery.

And I just love the awful lot of extensions describing Glorantha or not such as Land of Ninja (Oriental Ki fighting) and Glorantha Secrets (Greatness of Elder Races).

Reasons I like others but I did not choose them...
RQ 2 : Ideal for survival game type/skill oriented and for its simplicity. why not ? I tend to dislike low level games
MRQ and forks : A Great 2nd Age Exploration. why not ? too much D&D add-on
RQ6 and forks : A great adaptative fighting systems and a lot of good idea. why not ? RQ III is faster and I don't like RQ6 skills
RQ-Slayers : A Great Name... why not : everything else !
RQ-Glorantha : Ruuuuuuuuuuuuunes .... why not : because it's just RQII fighting system + Pendragon V skills + Glorantha's magic

 

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3, which I started with.  Good worldbuilding support and a mostly tight design.  I played enough of it to get into it but not enough to understand its problems.  2 looks like a joke, je ne sais quoi not withstanding, and 6, which I have played a fair bit of, is fine and has some good stuff like combat effects and aspects of its magic, but it's just a little sprawling.

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

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I started with RQ2, which I liked just fine, but it always felt a little incomplete ... but I like my games crunchy and detailed.  So when RQ3 came along, offering a lot more "crunch" and (mostly) refining what I already liked about RQ2, it quickly became my favourite system.

However, as we all well know, as a way to game in Glorantha, RQ3 was a disappointment for a long, long time.  It wasn't a huge deal -- the existing RQ2 supplements were still perfectly usable -- but the lack of anything really new for Glorantha was frustrating.  That, however, is a separate issue from the system, which compared to RQ2, was lacking very little -- other than some desperately-needed errata which, again, was a long time in coming (at least as officially published -- fortunately very early on I had a long list of questions that had been answered by Greg and Sandy covering everything I considered important, touching on many topics that the official errata remained silent about).

One funny thing that sticks in my head is that I noticed quite quickly that the rules version of the HP-per-location chart didn't match the stated 40%-33%-25% breakdown in many areas, which just didn't make any sense to me -- so I wrote a simple program on the university mainframe to print out an accurate chart.  Nowadays, of course, it's comically easy to do the equivalent in Excel.

After some time I of course came up with all manner of house rules and extensions (particularly for combat) which I compiled into my own personal "RQ3.5".  That document has a lot of needed work remaining still, but with the imminent release of RQG I don't see much point in completing it now.  I'm sure I'll adapt many of those house rules into the new game.  It's what we do!

As for other versions ... like many people we got a chance to look at the draft RQ4 and liked many things in it, but never made any attempt to play it.  And there things remained until the first Mongoose edition was released.  We tried it and we hated it.  Hated!  There were one or two interesting ideas that I contemplated retro-fitting into my RQ3.5 but motivation was a bit lacking at that time.  I hear that Mongoose's 2nd edition was a considerable improvement, but the 1st edition had destroyed my interest in it pretty thoroughly.  (I wasn't wildly impressed by Mongoose's publication strategy, either.)  A little later some of my friends tried RQ6 and were generally positive, but I never got a chance to see for myself and had pretty much dropped out of the whole RQ thing (and role-playing in general, to be honest).  I thought I had lost all interest in Glorantha, too, until the announcement of RQG proved how wrong that was ....

So I await RQG and the associated publications to see if we really have gone full circle over nearly 40 years ....

 

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5 hours ago, BWP said:

 

One funny thing that sticks in my head is that I noticed quite quickly that the rules version of the HP-per-location chart didn't match the stated 40%-33%-25% breakdown in many areas, which just didn't make any sense to me -- so I wrote a simple program on the university mainframe to print out an accurate chart.  Nowadays, of course, it's comically easy to do the equivalent in Excel.

 

Is this the program that printed things out in a hit location Mr. Man shape? Many such renderings per landscape page?

SDLeary

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RQ3.

I started with RQ2 and it was good.  Then I got RQ3 and it was so much better.

Sure it wasn't so closely tied to Glorantha and wasn't well supported with quality supplements, but that isn't a flaw in the game system. 

Sure it's encumbrance and fatigue systems are clunky and seemed to demonstrate a lack of play testing but on the other hand:

It is a true D100 system, not a pseudo one like RQ2.

Hit locations in RQ2 were cool.  But RQ3 with different tables for melee vs missile/magic makes so much more sense.

The formal distinction between Pow and MP is great and makes the rules easier to understand.

Siz and Int of 2D6+6 instead of 3D6 for humans is a good change (Siz more so than Int perhaps).

Creatures having a Con of more than 3D6 is good.

The skills bonus calculations is harder to do than RQ2 but is much more logical (and less D&D like).

I never had a problem with it but I have talked with people who complained that the RQ2 Defence concept could get broken very easily.  RQ3 Dodge is not perfect but I think is better than Defence.

Sorcery is not well suited for Glorantha, but for those of us who played in other worlds, and with a bit of tweaking, it can be an awesome magic system, great for players who like to number crunch and plan ahead.

Renaming Battle and Rune Magic to Spirit and Divine is in my opinion good.

 

RQ2 is good.  RQ3 is better. I hope RQG is the best.

 

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On 11/28/2017 at 12:03 AM, Jon Hunter said:

OK mine at the time was RQII, I really didn't like RQ3 when it came out.

In hindsight I think RQ3 was a better system,...

Yup - almost exactly my experience.

Minus the medieval west: I'm not a Gloranthaphile - it's just  a cool example setting, I've not run a game there since the late seventies, just used the source books as springboards for my own stuff.

Add in that RQ3 was heinously expensive for a penniless A Level student in the UK when it was released, and I spent several years from it first appearing being a very grumpy RQ2 grognard... then GW lost the license in the UK and had a fire sale of their hardbacks and I got all five for £25 and actually read and then played the game. It is not flawless, but it is admirably logical and there's a subtle interplay between the sub-systems that really works, without making the game fragile (unlike say d20).

I've re-read both RQ2 and RQ3 a couple of times in the intervening 30+ years - I've never been tempted to run or play RQ2 again, despite fond memories of playing it 1979-1983/4. Where as for a certain type of BRP fantasy I could still see myself breaking out RQ3 (or picking options from the BGB that make it most resemble RQ3) - and in fact did in 2009 for a post apocalypse setting game I keep meaning to go back to.

When I run BRP games these days I generally run either Magic World (or my SF variant), or something that looks very like RQ3, or a pulp variant. But the "spine" of rules logic that lets me adapt each to whatever setting comes ultimately from a blend of Worlds of Wonder, RQIII and Elric!... which were three of the main source texts for the BGB, funnily enough.

Cheers,

Nick

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3 hours ago, Mechashef said:

RQ3.

I started with RQ2 and it was good.  Then I got RQ3 and it was so much better.

Sure it wasn't so closely tied to Glorantha and wasn't well supported with quality supplements, but that isn't a flaw in the game system. 

Sure it's encumbrance and fatigue systems are clunky and seemed to demonstrate a lack of play testing but on the other hand:

It is a true D100 system, not a pseudo one like RQ2.

Hit locations in RQ2 were cool.  But RQ3 with different tables for melee vs missile/magic makes so much more sense.

The formal distinction between Pow and MP is great and makes the rules easier to understand.

Siz and Int of 2D6+6 instead of 3D6 for humans is a good change (Siz more so than Int perhaps).

Creatures having a Con of more than 3D6 is good.

The skills bonus calculations is harder to do than RQ2 but is much more logical (and less D&D like).

I never had a problem with it but I have talked with people who complained that the RQ2 Defence concept could get broken very easily.  RQ3 Dodge is not perfect but I think is better than Defence.

Sorcery is not well suited for Glorantha, but for those of us who played in other worlds, and with a bit of tweaking, it can be an awesome magic system, great for players who like to number crunch and plan ahead.

Renaming Battle and Rune Magic to Spirit and Divine is in my opinion good.

 

RQ2 is good.  RQ3 is better. I hope RQG is the best.

 

Thats detail you don't get into but id agree with virtually all your points bar sorcery which i don't have that experience of.

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You know this is really quite a hard one. I love the RQ2 flavour, yet the RQ3 played well in many ways, but there were some awful aspects like Fatigue Pts etc

The MRQ D100 SRD improved skills to an extent (although I think that great stat+stat idea came from ElfQuest). My RQ6 hardcover is probably one of the nicest versions to actually read. i have a love/hate thing with RQ6 combat manuvers. Sometimes the options are great, but other times they make the game feel a bit cumbersome. RQ3/BGB combat flowed a bit more smoothly in hindsight, but sometimes was a bit stale.

In recent years I played Glorantha using a BRP hybrid mix of BGB + RQ2 + RQ6. That worked reasonably well cherry picking what I liked. If I had gone back to Glorantha a few years later I probably would just run it with OQ out of simplicity (although I still love hit locations at times)

For non-Gloranthan fantasy settings I'll likely go with MW or OQ (also very interested in Newt's new D100% rpg he is developing, like a simpler version of OQ). For other settings I'll probably return to the BGB (however I suspect that RD100 could likely replace the BGB for me)

Given how much the Runes and setting will be embedded in the mechanics of the next edition of RQ, I think RQG will be what I will use for playing in Glorantha

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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On 28/11/2017 at 12:03 AM, Jon Hunter said:

OK mine at the time was RQII, I really didn't like RQ3 when it came out.

RQ2 as it was what I started with. It took me a long time to convert over as I was running Griffin Mountain.

The main problem with RQ3 was the price. The boxed set was very expensive..

On 28/11/2017 at 12:03 AM, Jon Hunter said:

Reason I converted over time

I got a job that paid more.

34 minutes ago, NickMiddleton said:

Add in that RQ3 was heinously expensive for a penniless A Level student in the UK when it was released, and I spent several years from it first appearing being a very grumpy RQ2 grognard... then GW lost the license in the UK and had a fire sale of their hardbacks and I got all five for £25 and actually read and then played the game. 

Same here - then all the spines went on my GW copies.

My conversion was nothing to do with the system, it's just that more material was appearing for RQ3. I still didn't like it and still don't as much as RQ2.

I played most of the other Chaosium systems and fortunately they didn't go through much of an update with new versions, CoC for example. The only one that had a good update in my opinion was Stormbringer to Elric! I much preferred Elric! But that's for another thread.

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I started with RQ2 and played it for about a year, mostly just with my family. Small town in the west country wasn't over-loaded with RQ players. Went to university and RQ3 came out so took out a mortgage and bought it. Ran it for about 10 years. I found that RQ2 felt more evocative but RQ3 was a slightly more coherent system so it became my standard RPG for pretty much everything. I ran 5 long-term campaigns and uncountable sessions of Gringle's Pawnshop.  I enjoyed playing other Chaosium systems (Particularly Pendragon and early Stormbringer; I didn't like the later Elric/Stormbringer versions) but they never really felt like my go-to system.

Drifted out of rpgs, came back in with Mongoose RQ. For me MRQ2/RQ6/Mythras defines my ideal RQ and is pretty close to my ideal generic RPG. I'm more likely to use a stripped-down version without hit locations in casual play.

I'm enjoying the Glorantha renaissance out of Chaosium these days but I would no more go back to running it in RQ2/G than I would go back to riding around on my first motorbike: a Honda CX500 for those keeping count. So RQ2/3 will always have a special place in my heart but Mythras is what I'll play.

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At the time I went to RQ, RQ3 was the only version available in my corner of Germany. My first RQ campaign was based on the RQ3 Vikings box, one of the first original publications after the rules came out. The version I had was the Games Workshop hardcover, and I wasn't that happy with the organisation. In order to get the rules, I started translating them, and I managed to go through about 60% before I learned that a German translation had already been finished.

RQ3 became my baseline for RuneQuest and BRP. I didn't miss Glorantha - while I had Gods of Glorantha and used it as guideline for my world's cults, I didn't have the background that went with it.

My first Gloranthan gaming was the Dragon Pass boardgame, but my RQ campaign remained in my homebrew world that had started with my Viking campaign. I did inherit elements from other RQ publications like Griffin Island (GW edition) and Land of Ninja (GW edition). It was Troll Pak (3rd ed. AH) which made me notice that the Blank Land of Balazar wasn't if it had Votanki hunters like the ones I knew from Griffin Island.

My first Gloranthan RQ game as GM was a playtest campaign using the 1994 version of RuneQuest - Adventures in Glorantha, never published. I found it a solid continuation of RQ3.

RQ3 also remained a go to reference because that used to be the only version translated to German, prior to TDM's RQ6.

I haven't used any of the published scenarios, although I have made good use of the sandbox elements offered there.

By the time the RQ3 renaissance petered out, I had managed to buy the (Games Workshop) RQ2 rules, but those didn't make me want to switch.

Prax never really caught my fancy. I have played a few convention scenarios there, but the beast riders never made me want to play them. Dragon Pass, the Principality of Sartar, and the Holy Country south of it with their Orlanthi and the chance to play just before the Lunar occupation there were a lot more what I wanted from the setting that the boardgame had brought to life for me.

I didn't buy MRQ1 after I found the setting book making strange assumptions about the EWF. I tried to master Hero Wars for Glorantha instead.

I played a single game of MRQ2 hosted by Loz when he was working on the first scenarios of a Harreksaga campaign.

 

For non-Gloranthan fantasy, I guess that I will stick to Mythras, unless the setting comes fused to a BRP rule system. For Gloranthan gaming, I am open for all of the current systems. Writing for HeroQuest is pleasantly laid back as I don't have to produce (and lay out) stat blocks. I still have to see RQG (beyond the Kickstarter) or 13G to see how those will fit my way of running and preparing a scenario.

I still should be able to sit down and improvise a RQ3 scenario, including estimates for hit locations and weapon damage. I don't have that familiarity with any other version of RQ.

 

3 hours ago, Falconer said:

No, but an abundance of quality support material is certainly a great reason to pick RQ2.

That abundance was traded at impossible rates after RQ3 was on the market. I partially completed my RQ2 collection in the 90s, on convention auctions. Compared to that, the Avalon Hill DeLuxe set was dirt cheap.

Edited by Joerg
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Telling how it is excessive verbis

 

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I started with RQ2 while in the Army after playing way too much D&D & Traveller in high school. Some years later I got the RQ3 advanced box used (cheap) and it was ok but not quite the same. Some time after that, Mood Design's edition of Pavis & Big Rubble came out. I scrounged in the stacks for my copy of RQ2 and stuck to that. 

 

Recently I bought the Classic hardcover and gave the old copy of RQ2 to my son to see if it catches his interest (he too, plays & gm's D&D and Traveller ;)

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5 hours ago, deleriad said:

For me MRQ2/RQ6/Mythras defines my ideal RQ and is pretty close to my ideal generic RPG. I'm more likely to use a stripped-down version without hit locations in casual play.

If you descale combat maneuvers and hit locations, then you are pretty much playing OpenQuest, which isn't a bad thing :D

" 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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