[Runequest] Runequest Digest, Vol 52, Issue 17

Stephen Posey stephenlposey at earthlink.net
Tue Jan 29 02:17:14 EST 2013

-----Original Message-----
>From: David Cake <dave at difference.com.au>
>Sent: Jan 28, 2013 12:28 AM
>To: RuneQuest Rules <runequest at rpgreview.net>
>Subject: Re: [Runequest] Runequest Digest, Vol 52, Issue 17
>On 28/01/2013, at 9:46 AM, "Andrew" <bgecko at bigpond.com> wrote:
>> Ah yes Bushido. I remember playing around with that game, as well as Daredevils, Chivalry and Sorcery and Empire of the Petal Throne. Always came back to RQ however.
>	And don't forget Aftermath, the other game system that used the loosely defined FGU meta-rules. A 
> classic example of  detail obsessed simulationist design goals (pages of rules on designing your own sling shots! 
> 30 hit locations! the huge catalogue of marginally different firearms!) that was dreadfully undermined by dubious 
> rules in practice (actually, most handguns came down to d10 pr d10 +1 - and the various super high powered 
> weapons could actually become less dangerous as power increased due to rules quirks).

Just to prove how much of a pedant and RPG rules-weenie I am I'll point out that FGU's Pulp-adventure system "Daredevils" is also based on the same Hume/Charette system and can well be considered "Aftermath!-Lite". 

BTW, if anyone is interested, FGU is still going:


They've even got an "Aftermath! Magic" supplement out, which I've been circling for purchase out of gobsmacked curiosity if nothing else.

>	I have a weird love/hate relationship with Chivalry and Sorcery. I bought pretty much every supplement for 
> the 1st and 2nd editions very cheap back in the day. I find a lot of great imagination and inspiration went into 
> the rules and supplements, and they are full of interesting ideas (some excellently researched, some dreadfully), 
> and I still keep them around for inspiration. 

Ditto. The Sourcebooks still resonate for me with how to think about things like handling major wounds, diseases, knocking down doors, complex locks, feudal economics, etc. And I find something very compelling about the handling of alchemists as something other than mere concoctors of potions and weird substances.

>	However, I have alway found the rules almost unplayably bad in practice. Magicians, for example, are 
> either painfully useless or staggeringly overpowered, barely ever anywhere in between. Combats are slow and 
> klunky and have too much detail, without ever feeling realistic. etc. 

I'll concur on all those points. Though I feel compelled to mention a pet bugaboo of mine: despite the general claims in the RPG literature (and not to steal any of Chaosium's thunder, just to set the record straight), I do believe C&S Saurians beat TrollPak by a year as the first "Fully Detailed Non-Human Sourcebook" published.

>	Much as I love the nostalgia, the rules systems we have now really are, for the most part, much much 
> better (and I definitely put RQ6 as an example). That crazy rush of creativity at the start of the hobby, much 
> of it totally mad but so much fun to read (any of Dave Hargraves Arduin Grimoire stuff, for example), I still 
> find inspiring, but we really have learnt a LOT about how to make good rules in the intervening decades. 

OMG, Arduin is so wonderfully over the top. We actually tried to play it for a while, this was back when only the first three digest-sized books were out and could hardly be construed as a COMPLETE system (we tacked on bits and bobs of OD&D and AD&D to make it work). The GM had a lot of trouble keeping things reined in. Great fun, but quickly got out of hand.

Anybody else following this "Old School RPG Renaissance" that's going on on? RPGNow and DriveThruRPG are chock full of clones of OD&D, AD&D, and several other early systems and miscellaneous add-ons, supplements, etc. 

It appears that notstalgia for all that is driving some significant segment of the RPG community these days. 

Stephen Posey
stephenlposey at earthlink.net 

More information about the Runequest mailing list