Runequest Update!

Als besonderen Service für unsere Leser die allerneuesten Offenbarungen direkt von Mongoose. Wie ich schon vermutete, ist alles auf “realistisches” Fantasy ausgelegt, hoffen wir auf die Skill-Regeln:

(gepostet im z.Z. achtseitigem RPGNet thread, habe das wichtigste herausgefiltert)

All comments pending a final revision by Ken Hite and last minute tweaks. . .

>>>1) The same stats as RQ I-III. They might add up differently, the “stat bonus for skills” might be calculated differently (or even be absent altogether … but I wouldn’t bet on that).

The core Characteristics are pretty much the same. There are new and tweaked Abilities.

>>>2) A couple methods of stat creation, from old fashioned rolling for the Rune Purists (pronounced GRO-nard) to new fangled point buy for the Children of the White Wolf.


>>>3) The skills? I think that the skill list may be highly recognizable, but it seems a sure-fired bet that it will change some. Will they introduce Easy/Medium/Hard/V Hard skills like GURPS? Or perhaps JAGS-like Mastery Levels? I don’t know, but I can’t help but think that the plain old percentile skill list is going to have to have some kind of jazz to bring it into the 21st c … something to say “this isn’t just a reprint of the best of RQ II & III.”

The skill list is indeed different, with some combined into one skill (if you have seen the Lone Wolf RPG, you’ll get the idea). Skills are split into Basic and Advanced, the latter pretty much allowing for anything you wish, and highly expandable. So, everyone can have a go at, say, climbing a cliff but not everyone can do Runesmithing. Otherwise they look quite familiar. How they are actually used from a games mechanics perspective, however. . .

>>>4) Occupation and Age of Character. You know, I liked … no, I really liked the RQ III char-gen. I used very similar ideas for a couple of my silly “Fantasy Heartbreakers” that I used to work on. That being said, it seems too “squidgy” for the modern era. I think we’ll still see “Civilized/Barbarian/Primitive/etc”, but maybe we’ll get age-group based kits or packages of some kind.

You won’t be too disappointed here.

>>>It would also let us start characters across a spectrum, from Johnny Just-Left-Apple-Lane to Jonathan-Rune-Lord status, something that could definitely appeal to players and GMs who want to escape the whole “low-level to high-level” Campbell-Myth thing.

Now this is certainly possible. For scenario purposes, we have ‘graded’ characters – this allows you to start halfway up the tree, so to speak.

>>>5) Advantages & Disadvantages, or whatever? No. Although many games have them, I think if MongooseQuest stays close to its roots we will not see them here.

No. Looked at it, discarded it. There are enough options in character creation to do pretty much what you want.

>>>6) Experience. Want to bet they do away with “skill check hunting” by instead giving out a limited number of free skill checks each session … maybe tied to things you did or tried to do? I can’t imagine there being no rules for plain old practice, training, or instruction. Something like, each week you can study one thing, or two things if you do nothing but study.

Oh, so very, very close.

>>>7) Magic? Runequest without Bladesharp and Befuddle and POW 15 Disease Spirits just wouldn’t be RuneQuest to me. I think we’re going to see very RQ II/III rules for Spirit and Divine magic. Sorcery is here to stay too. Here’s where I put down my hope, not so much my predicton. Sorcery is going to be completely revamped, and may even be more directly tied to Runes (hmmm!) I know there is an alternate “cobble the runes together” system out there on the net. Here’s hoping they use it as an inspiration.

Yes, there are some big changes here. On the other hand, there is no one type of magic. The core rules introduce ‘Rune Magic’ as the ‘default’ but the Companion and Magic of Glorantha add other systems. So, if you are (say) a Demonologist, the magic you use will actually _feel_ different to someone else in the party using Rune Magic and another using Necromancy. Some types of magic will be related, others very different. This means different cultures can (not must) be fundamentally different from a magic-using perspective.

A note here – non-Gloranthan rulebooks (including the core rulebook) are set to deprovincialise RQ. Glorantha is still the default setting but there is more than a nod to other settings, including ‘standard’ fantasy. You can see this with the Cult rules – very important to RQ characters but in other settings you can easily switch the rules to cover Guilds, making this aspect of ‘standard’ fantasy much more important than in, say, the Realms.

>>>8) Combat? I predict initiative based on Strike Ranks are going the way of the Dodo. Too bad, I liked them. I think that we’re going to see a fairly D&D3.5/GURPS style combat system. As in moving, weapon reach, and a variety of available manuevers all suitable for miniatures on a table, not as in tumbline through Attacks of Opporchancity (sic).

SR still there, though very different (they are uncapped now and higher is better, for example). As for miniatures, you _can_ use them (and a new line of RQ miniatures are on the way – lets hear it for the Ducks!) but the absolute brief for the game was that everything could be done in the imagination. No AoO, but you won’t want to turn your back on an enemy. . .

The combat system itself was streamlined from previous versions in a big way and we wanted to find a very ‘dramatic’ set of rules that nonetheless still quantified everything without leaving it to player and GM fiat. Our model was the lightsabre duels of Star Wars, particularly Episode III. So. . .

1. You won’t just stand around bashing your enemy while he bashes back. Fights in RQ are _not_ static. You can move from location to location in the course of a single fight.

2. Combat in RQ has a good chance of effecting the surrounding environment, especially at high ‘levels’ of play.

3. You will ‘feel’ every swing and, more importantly, every dodge and parry. Kinda hard to explain that one but you’ll see what I mean

4. If someone thrusts a shortsword at you, you’ll probably parry. If someone hefts a huge great axe at your head, you’ll want to dodge, no matter how bad at it you normally are. That hunk of metal is not likely to be stopped by your little spear (say). Speaking of spears, they have not been maligned to the degree they normally are in RPGs. They are actually quite good. . .

5. Combat remains deadly and yes, you can lose all sorts of limbs throughout your career. However, the rules for dodging and parrying allow for a prolonged fight between skilled characters, meaning it is never a case of whittling down the HPs of the Big Bad to zero. You will have to _fight_ him.

Funnily enough, there is a touch of the Starship Troopers miniatures game in the combat system, in concept if not in mechanics. . .

>>>9) I think we’re still going to see the same (or very similar) hit locations. A limited number of HP based on Stats, that will be divided among loscations with very little change. And the usual rules for Impaling Weapons/Critical Hits. Likewise, Armour is going to be pretty-much unchanged, and will protect by location.

Some changes here but, basically, yes.

>>>10) And finally, I predict that the glorious Broo will finally be a Player Race! The first sourcebook will be a Broo Splat (shudder .. I don’t want to think about it any more).

As a core option, no. In fact, as core options, only humans appear. However, as in the original game, every monster race will potentially be playable, and there will be enough in the core rulebook to get you going.

>>>Okay. So, not so much with Number 10. Scratch Broo and insert Duck.

The Quack Pack!

Matthew Sprange
Mongoose Publishing

Originally Posted by knightsky
Magic and weapons actually having a different feel (beyond how much damage they do) depending on what options you choose? I think you just made a sale.

It was the existing Parry rules in RQ that brought this about*. I was sitting down, tinkering with rules when, for whatever reason, I began toying with daggers and great axes. So, I thought, this tiny sliver of metal is going to stop a maddened Broo thrashing around with a whopping great axe? Umm, no. . .

Thus began the quest (and it went through many, many variations) to find a simple mechanic that would portray the difference in parrying ability (and the ability to avoid being parried) of various weapons. Then of course, we had to start figuring out how maces and hammers worked in terms of momentum and parrying ability, making arrows as lethal as they should be, spears as cool as they should be, etc. . .

I will say now that there are many people who have used weapons in real life that may not agree with everything we have done. However, I am also gratified that they will also not agree with each other – you’ll tweak this system anyway, right? Still, I remember well the introduction of a rule that stated that you can automatically hit an inanimate object – and then a playtester spoke up and said that he had, indeed, once swung a sword at a fence post and missed.

No RPG can account for everything

The approach to magic, on the other hand, was fairly obvious to us – after having done many variant magic systems in D20 with our Encyclopaedia Arcane series, the idea of different cultures having different magicks seemed logical. Rune Magic, incidentally, originally borrowed a lot from our Dragon Magic book (which I would urge anyone to check out, as it is my favourite EA book by far), in terms of matching magical power to risk – in theory, there was no limit to the magical energy you could attempt to control but the more you pulled into a spell, the bigger the dangers of something going wrong.

Unfortunately, it poroved too unwieldly for a ‘default’ magic system, but it is likely to show up again in the future.

* Parry and Dodge now have slightly different mechanics and, importantly, are different from one another. We wanted you to ‘feel’ the dodge when rolling the dice, which had to be different from the feel you got while parrying.

Okay, that doesn’t make a huge amount of sense. Wait until the game is released in July, you’ll see what I mean!

Matthew Sprange
Mongoose Publishing

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