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RuneQuest and the Basic Role Playing System
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Below are the 18 most recent journal entries recorded in RuneQuest-Basic Role Playing's LiveJournal:

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Monday, September 17th, 2007
5:00 pm
I'd Like To Know
I know that bobquasit has not exactly been kind to the new edition of Runequest from Mongoose and their other BRP license products, but I would like to know what makes it so very different from the 3rd edition RQ (the Avalon Hill distributed one) and the actual mechanic problems and differences involved.

Since I've only ever played that edition of RQ in the past, I really don't have a good representation of the differences.

I know that Mongoose did this thing where they broke down game material that could easily have been placed in a single volume across about 8 thin hardback books so far... which is problematic in regards to cost, mobility and trying to look up information when you need it (since there is no master indexing system).

And in this case I'm not really interested in the politics internally of the companies involved and how it came about to be published. I'm just looking at things from a mechanics and setting kind of thing.

Wednesday, May 9th, 2007
9:46 am
d100: The Chaosium System Announce!

Basic Roleplaying
The Chaosium d100 system for Fall 2007.

Basic Role Playing
The Chaosium d100 Role Playing System

CHA 2020
Price $34.95
ISBN 1-56882-189-1
252pp (approx)

BASIC ROLE PLAYING presents the core Chaosium game system based on nearly 30 years of use and refinement.

In 1978 we first used this system as RuneQuest explored the world of Glorantha. In the years following, we adapted this system to other worlds including Elfquest, Stormbringer, Call of Cthulhu, Ringworld, Superworld, Worlds of Wonder, Nephilim, and more.

It is with great pleasure that we are finally publishing BASIC ROLE PLAYING as a stand alone game system. At it's foundation, BRP is easy to learn and intuitive to play. It can be scaled to allow for any sort of campaign or game setting. Characters increase in experience by getting better at the skills they actually use, rather than random improvement via levels. Due to their intuitive nature the rules lend themselves to role playing because they stay out of the way. Because of their versatile nature, BASIC ROLE PLAYING can be used to run virtually any campaign, in any setting. This core rulebook is just the first step into a wide realm of BRP gaming possibilities to come.
Thursday, March 8th, 2007
10:44 am
Another Design Poll...
Folks, since I got such a good and useful amount of data from this the last time, I have a short little poll on tabletop roleplaying game design and Character Experience/Growth that I'd love to have you take.

Click Here, please?

Thanks to all that respond.

Friday, March 2nd, 2007
12:09 pm
Poll Closed...

Ok. I closed my poll and have results and offering some analysis (and discussion) about it for those who were involved and wanted to see the end result. You can look at it in detail and discuss it by following this link.

Thanks again for everyone that was involved.

Wednesday, February 28th, 2007
8:23 pm
Tuesday, January 9th, 2007
3:17 pm
Roleplaying Gamer's Poll

Please pop by and give me some input: http://unquietsoul5.livejournal.com/951227.html

Tuesday, August 22nd, 2006
8:10 am
So Who Has Looked

I'm curious as to the impressions of others who have picked up a copy of the new Mongoose edition of Runequest that just came out.


Wednesday, March 29th, 2006
8:30 pm
Magic items & found items
Since this community has been dead for so long, here are some magic items and found items that I whipped up for The Chaos Project on my site.

Magic Items:
Wooden Puzzle, unique
Description: 1d20+20 heavy wooden pieces.
Powers: Assembling the puzzle takes one hour per try, after which an INT x 1 roll must be made. Any number of attempts may be made. Once the puzzle has been assembled, it turns out to be a life-sized humanoid head, which animates. It is inhabited by a spirit, INT 20, POW 20, who knows 1d10+10 spells. The spirit willingly serves the one who assembled the puzzle. It can answer questions (it is highly intelligent, and may have some oracular ability at the GM's option), cast spells, provide magic points (since it is effectively bound by the puzzle-solver)...the only thing it cannot do is give its true name. Nor do Command (Spirit) spells of any type work on it. Once it has performed 10+1d10 services for the assembler, the head immediately sneezes and flies into 1d20+20. The configuration of these pieces are always different from the last time (and every time before). The head is, naturally, deactivated and the spirit effectively disappears until the head is reassembled.
History: No one knows.
Notes/Warnings: The head may also react and sneeze (thereby disassembling) in the presence of one or more GM-determined rare substances, words, or persons.

Skin-changing potion
This potion causes the drinker to regenerate all of their skin in a 24-hour period. The new skin grows in under the old, which flakes off painlessly (although the effect can be rather gross). All scars and tattoos are lost.
The new skin looks younger and healthier than the old skin, increasing APP by 1.
This potion is worth huge sums to wealthy, older nobles.

Temporary healing potions
These poorly-made potions heal damage, but the effect only lasts for 1d10 rounds, minutes, or hours, after which all of the damage reappears. If other types of healing are applied as well, they take priority.

A biographical scroll, unique
Description: An ordinary-looking scroll in a plain case. It detects as magical.
Powers: The scroll contains the life story of the person who owns it. It is historically accurate. However, it also includes the future life and death of the reader. These are entirely speculative (although they are written as if they were already accomplished), and have no effect on the actual life of the character - apart from any incidental fear or life-altering decisions, of course. If the scroll is given to anyone else, the text does not change until A) it has been in the possession of its new owner for 24 hours, and B) it has been rolled up - the text never changes while it is being watched.

Found Items:

  • 1d100+20 twigs covered in birdlime - a STR 5 glue.

  • A bright light is shining directly overhead. It is not the sun, nor does it have any visible physical source. It appears to be 1d100+20 meters up, and perhaps 10 meters round; a roughly circular patch.

  • Everyone looks subtly different here. It must be a trick of the light. The effect fades in 1d10 rounds.

  • A big stick which has been chewed by very lage and sharp teeth.

  • A partially-melted quartz crystal the size and approximate shape of a human palm. It is a natural x3 magnifier, and an effective firestarter.

  • 1d6+2 steel burrs. Very annoying; they cause 1d4 damage, but each round they continue to penetrate all but solid metal armor and do damage. Each point of damage they cause also subtracts 1% from the victim's chance to do anything, due to the pain. If the burrs are removed, the penalty stops. It takes 1d4 unimpeded rounds and a DEX x 5 roll to remove a burr from an easily reachable part of the body; Burrs in hard-to-reach spots (at the GM's option) may reduce the chance to DEX x 3 or even lower. A fumble causes 1d4 damage unabsorbed by armor. Others may remove burrs at a DEX x 10 chance.

  • An animal-shaped cloud.

  • A mist cloud, 1d10+3 meters across and high, which stains everything that is in it for at least one round a random color.

  • Berry bushes which stain anything that brushes against them a dark purple. The stain also has a smell that attracts bugs.

  • A chair covered with STR 14 glue

  • There's hair or fur everywhere. It looks like it snowed around here!

  • Giant claws, apparently discarded. A critical Animal Lore reveals the source is a ______.

  • Steel boots. Incredibly heavy; they each have an ENC of 20. They have 14 AP.

I tend to make these up when I'm bored; during long meetings, for example.

Incidentally, anyone can add their own items to the Chaos Project.

Current Mood: bored
Saturday, March 4th, 2006
3:12 pm
Mongoose RuneQuest v1.5
This version, restricted to a "hard core" "inner circle" (their words) of playtesters is much better than previous releases.

The system is playable, realistic and balanced. It is still very short and relatively souless however.

Whilst it may not make much sense to those who dont't have a copy of the rules, the playtester's comments I sent off to Matthew this morning can also be found here:

Monday, July 11th, 2005
1:05 pm
What bothers me
Here's one thing that bothers me.

From a post by Greg on RPGNet, talking about the new RQ compared to BRP:

"The game will be the same system, not the same copyrighted words."
10:48 am
The New RQ
There's a bit more information available, and it should probably be noted here.

Mongoose, under the auspices of Issaries, will be using much of the BRP system. There are reportedly some substantial changes in combat, and magic has yet to be seen. Chaosium is not involved with this project.

Greg announced that Mongoose would be able to use the BRP mechanics by re-stating them in new words. This allows them to use the system without the permission of Chaosium, since game mechanics can't be copyrighted - only the specific text used to explain them.

So there will be two new RQ-related systems out there. One will be Chaosium's new multi-genre Deluxe Basic Roleplaying, which may be given a new name. The other will be Mongoose/Issaries' new "RuneQuest", which will feature Glorantha and other settings.

Which of these two systems will be closer to RQIII, and what the effect will be of these systems on each other, remains to be seen.
Tuesday, July 5th, 2005
10:29 am
New Edition of RuneQuest?!?
Fwded from rpg.net

Mongoose Publishing is releasing a new version of the RuneQuest RPG next year - and we would like your input!

If you wish to be involved in the game's design and balancing, please drop me a line at spare@mongoosepublishing.com, letting me know a) what it is about the previous editions you most liked and b) what you would like to see in the new edition. From these we'll pick the gamers who are obviously avid RuneQuest fans and ask them to join us for design comments and playtesting.

- - -

Hi guys,

A lot of questions - I thought it may be interesting to some but still . . .

It will not be d20/OGL. It will be a completely new system that will look and smell like the original. However, it will also be a little less 'eighties' and more streamlined. Don't get too worried at this point, you will still be able to deftly parry or nimbly dodge attacks - it will just happen a lot faster. It was the 'tooing and froing' nature of RQ combats that got us interested in the first place. Magic is the biggest area that is facing change right now but we are still just throwing around playtest ideas.

Glorantha will be the first setting released (independantly from the main rulebook, incidentally, which we are intending to be a very cheap hardback), but we want to explore all sorts of areas with RQ and other settings will follow very quickly. King Arthur's Britain is one being talked about at the moment (the realistic Arthur, not shining knights Arthur).

Hope that helps!
Matthew Sprange
Mongoose Publishing
Monday, May 30th, 2005
10:48 am
The Age of Nephilim
Why are Nephilim characters so damn old?

3d6 x5 for starting age. Wow, on average that's 55. My one-on-one game has a character that's 65. Thirty rolls on the aging table.

Dammit, character generation in that game takes long enough as it is.
Wednesday, April 27th, 2005
11:27 am
Dodge, etc.
This started out as a response to an earlier thread, but it exceeded the maximum comment length. Trust me to babble on and on! :D

tcpip > Oh, I agree. That's good programming sense. Heck, I do the same thing to political-economic systems.

So do I. Of course, I have a ring-side seat here in the US as our political system is being tested to destruction. :(

tcpip > Ummm... can I ask what was flawed about it? I know a lot of people read it as meaning if you dodge you can't attack, but that didn't seem the case to me.

This is difficult to explain, but the point is definitely valid. Let me see...

The problem is that statistically, anyone who relies on Dodge as a defense is certain to die.

Why? Let's take two cases: Joe, who parries with (let's say) a shield, and Errol, who relies on Dodge.

There are five possible outcomes on both sides:

We may discount the results of fumbling a defensive roll. It's equally bad for Dodge and Parry.

Likewise, if Joe or Errol fail, the result will be the same for both: they get hit, assuming that their opponent had at least a success. If a special or crit hit was rolled, the defender takes the full effect.

Errol is likely to take the worst of that, since Dodge tends to make more sense when wearing lighter armor, but that's a logical consequence of the choice the Dodger makes and is therefore acceptable - it's not a system error.

But what about success? Let's say that Joe and Errol have both rolled a success in their defense. What's the result?

If the attacker rolled a failure or fumble, there is no difference.

If the attacker rolled a success, Errol avoids all damage and Joe's shield or weapon absorbs its AP in damage. Against a high-damage opponent, Errol is better off. Joe also runs the risk of having his weapon damaged.

BUT - if the attacker rolls a special or critical, Errol is in serious trouble. His successful Dodge has NO EFFECT. He is hit with the full effect of the special or critical hit. Meanwhile, Joe's successful Parry means that his shield/weapon will absorb its AP in damage, possibly even nullifying the spec/crit - and certainly making it a lot more survivable.

Likewise, even a special Dodge sucess is completely ineffective against a critical hit. It's as if the defender simply stood there. But a special Parry is effective even against a crit.

Therefore the Dodge rules as written make it very likely that special or critical attacks will be devastating. It's a matter of pure luck: the Dodger must hope that s/he will be lucky enough to roll a special or critical success whenever their opponent does. The odds are extremely poor, except perhaps for Hero-level Dodge.

The solution that my group applied was a simple one: each "level" of Dodge success reduced the effect of the opposing attack by one category. Therefore:

A normal Dodge success negates a normal attack, reduces a special attack success to a normal one, and reduces a critical attack to a special one. The logic is that the Dodger moved partially away from or with the movement of the attack, reducing its effectiveness.

A special Dodge negates special and normal attacks, and reduces a critical attack to a normal success.

A critical Dodge negates any attack.

Of course another question arises: can a Dodge reduce a failure to a fumble? We chose not to go that route, since it seemed likely to overcomplicate things.

Sorry, that was a long explanation.

By the way, I agree about special knockback; it was another bad rule. It would make more sense to say that...hmm...each point of damage in excess of the defender's SIZ + AP (or armor ENC, although the ENC system is cumbersome) knocks the defender back by 1 meter. Perhaps a DEX x 5 roll should be allowed to the defender...or a Jump roll. But that should be modified by the amount of damage received, right?

Perhaps instead of a DEX x 5 or Jump roll, a resistance roll of STR vs. the damage is necessary to avoid knockback.

Hmm. That rule could also be used generally for attackers who are simply trying to knock their opponents down, in which case the resistance roll might be required no matter HOW much damage was done. Of course, with low damage the chance of success would be minimal...and such a sweep/push attack would probably be limited to inflicting half of the actual damage, at best. In other words, the entire damage would be considered for knockback purposes, but only half of it would be "real" damage.

Hey, that would even work with combatants who are trying to push each other over! They could even both succeed, which makes sense. Wrestling! Jeeze, I love this rules system. :D

Current Mood: good
Tuesday, April 26th, 2005
3:28 pm
Some time ago I got all rosy and nostalgic about RuneQuest, a game I played solidly for a good ten years. Now since I'm a bit of a Gloranthaphile I'm now towing the party line and playing HeroQuest, which has been a bumpy ride to get to grips with but for me runs smoothly now.

However with BM having its 15yr birthday, and marking almost 10 years of my own involvement I decided to return to my gaming roots and run RQ game of Pavis & Big Rubble. Besides I wanted to see how RQ compared after running HQ for the last five years or so.

The con was small so I only got to run once with three players on the Saturday morning.

How the Game wentCollapse )

Overall I enjoyed this. The players enjoyed it because unlike HQ it was less intensive setting wise. As a GM I initially missed some of the wonderful personality/interaction rules that HQ has, but the players were more than up for role-playing their characters. Definitely be taking back this simplified approach to Glorantha, ie don’t explain show as it crops up in the game, into HeroQuest and defiantly thinking about running this game again at a future con.
Wednesday, April 13th, 2005
12:49 pm
RQ Charms
I came up with this idea a while ago, and then forgot all about it. I stumbled across it again on my hard drive, and I'm thinking about expanding it into an article for my site. I'd really appreciate any feedback before I start writing, though. ->PM

Recently I had an idea for a new kind of magic item for RQ; something that seems so obvious that I can't believe someone didn't already create it: Charms.

Lucky charms, that is (no cereal jokes, please), which increase the owner's chance with a specific skill. For example, a little toy bridle made of horsehair which increases the owner's chance to Ride by a certain small percentage. Or a tiny silver arrow that improves Bow Attack similarly.

The thing is, there are a number of decisions to make about how charms would work. Some questions:

1. How much should a charm improve a skill? I'm thinking that the enchanter should be able to choose at the time of creation, either rolling 1d6 or taking a flat 3% (in other words, using the experience gain mechanic). This would allow more variation among charms.

2. How much POW should it cost to make a charm? Does 2 points for +1d6/3% sound reasonable?

3. Restrictions/Requirements? There are many of these. For example, I'd think that the enchanter who makes a charm should have to make a check against the applicable skill when they craft the charm. And perhaps the charm can only increase the skill of the owner up to the skill of the enchanter when it was crafted, so that if Bob the Enchanter has a Ride skill of 78% when he makes a +3% Ride charm and gives it to someone with a 76% Ride skill, it only increases their skill to 78%, not 79%. Also, I don't think that the charm should be factored in when making experience rolls. Should direct contact with the charm be required for it to be effective? Should there be a limit to the number of charms which can be used at one time by one person? Perhaps they need to be attuned, like powered crystals, in which case only one could be used at a time. Or perhaps the limit should be POW/3 or POW/2.

4. Bonuses? I think it should be easier to make a charm by using appropriate substances, or rather it should be harder to make a charm out of an inappropriate material (or materials). For example, making a Ride charm out of horsehair is appropriate - making it out of metal is not (unless it was a piece of metal taken from a bridle, perhaps). The GM should apply a negative modifier to the creator's Enchant roll for inappropriate substances (but how much?).

Contrariwise, magical substances should make it easier to enchant, or possibly in the case of powerful magical materials reduce (but never completely eliminate) the required POW. This sort of logic should probably apply to ALL sorts of magic items!

5. Stackable? I'm inclined to make the charm enchantment stackable, so that more powerful charms can be created. But this would be easy to abuse, so I'm thinking that the POW cost to stack charms should increase exponentially: 2 POW for the first 1d6, 4 for the second, 8 for the third, and so on. Sound reasonable?

6. What about charms for entire skill categories (i.e. Agility, for example)? Or for ALL skills (that would be incredibly powerful). Also, what about charms that improve Luck rolls, or resistance to disease? There should be charms which improve the chance to cast specific spells, and maybe some which work for all spells, too. Though again that would be very powerful.

7. Special success? What happens if the enchanter specials or criticals their Enchant roll for a charm? What if they special/crit the required skill roll for the skill? What if they special/crit both rolls? What would the effects of a Fumble be for either roll?

Anyway, just some ideas. What do you think?
Friday, April 1st, 2005
8:20 am
RuneQuest news group
Apparently someone started a RuneQuest news group.

I'm not sure if it's actually a usenet group, or if it's just a Google-beta thing. I made a post to it, but I'm the only one. The whole thing is kind of...mysterious.
Thursday, March 3rd, 2005
6:17 pm
just a thought
20 years ago our RQ group developed a new skill for the character, a Chaloyna Arroy priest. The skill of "groveling".

And the player would do it too. "oh please mr. tusken Raider, you don't want to kill me...Look I'll clean your cave, I'll tend to your sick beasts."

He got the skill up to about 70% before he killed. (in a messy party thwacking ambush that we could not get good roles to save our souls or characters)
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