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General Forge Forums => Game Development => Topic started by: ssem on February 25, 2011, 04:09:08 AM



Title: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: ssem on February 25, 2011, 04:09:08 AM
I started writing a specific fantasy novel in a game world of my design back in the early 80s. this failed mostly to my lack of imagination, 90% English fluency (i have no first language) and my complete inability to describe and envision how people would act and react in certain situations. I also discovered, in my own opinion, that there was a lot of 'reality' based inconsistencies. I was trying to create a new reality and have all the events in the that world be consistent with my idea of what should happen and what shouldn't. so in the early 90s I decided to create a role-playing game that was designed purely for the main stories in that world in the hopes that if there was any doubt if something could happen, the rules of the game would decide. little did I know that most game designers had written stories based on their games already.
one of the gamers in a group i was in at that time when i first started creating the game listened to my description of the world and posted an advert of it on the groups forums as ... Adventures in the land of Jan, where an experienced party of heroes can get wiped out by a single rabbit.
twenty years have passed since then without me having anyone to help with the game design or play testing. I've creating a few hundred different game rules and either thrown them away or lost them. a gaming shop opened almost outside my house over a year ago and i tried advertise my game there and up until about October last year i have had less than no success.
a lot has happened since then. I feel more progress has been made in the last 6 months than the last 30 years. still no one has play tested any parts of my game and the rules aren't really existent as such though they are stabilising. I will freely admit to everyone that I rape and steal every possible rule from every game I find. I believe Dave Arneson and Ian? Livingstone are the only game designers to not have copied a single rule from anywhere else. then again I've only seen published games. I cannot comment on indie games that don't get sold in shops.
and I believe it would help the reader understand the rules I have if I state where I got them from. for example I recently used tunnels and trolls combat style ( copied by usagi yojimbo of fuzion games and pendragon of chaosium) to have one number for melee ability and that both opponents roll against each other and the highest roll hits and the other misses.
I found it great to use. a complete change from all the other game combat styles. but it wasn't what I really wanted so I have changed it. what game did I copy this time? every company in which their combat involves rolling a to hit against a target number would claim I copied them. so I will just say D&D (pre AD&D), the first role-playing game with that style. the core of my game rules try very hard to emulate the original D&D rules merged together with the unheard of Torg game by West End Games. together they form a traditional fantasy game with high heroics and cinematics capable of mixing fantasy with technology.

which brings me to my first question: I am looking for rules that grant various combat manoeuvres to any and every fighting style, I think some people call them katas. there are so many games that have manoeuvres for martial arts. but not kenjutsu or western weapon fighting. while I claim to rape all rules, these rules are converted into my system and are frequently completely unrecognisable as the original. I don't copy the rule, rather I decide how the rule can be translated into the game system. these combat manoeuvres can come from anywhere... LARP, RPGS, boardgames, computer games or maybe even a translation of real fighting styles converted onto paper.
Let me know if you have any suggestions or advice. I ask only one rule question to get the ball started. feel free to ask anything about my game or world. there's never anyone around at the gaming shop interested in discussing my game. they are only interested in playing or GM-ing published games


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: Gregor Hutton on February 25, 2011, 04:42:01 AM
Hello ssem

Welcome to the Forge!

I think this thread might be in the wrong forum (no worries, if it is a Moderator will move it), as it sounded more like Game Development to me,

Threads in Actual Play have the following rules (http://www.indie-rpgs.com/forge/index.php?topic=30748.0) and those in Game Development have these ones (http://www.indie-rpgs.com/forge/index.php?topic=30746.0).

Anyway, I'd like to hear more about your game, do you have a document (even a rough or brief one) outlining the rules and procedures of play?

Cheers,
Gregor

edited to fix link format - RE


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: ssem on February 25, 2011, 06:04:27 AM
thanks Greg :)
I am completely new here. a veteran game designer and veteran just about anything to do with imagination referred me to this site. technology and the internet are difficult concepts for me and I had to ask friends how to use this site. it seemed that I was to introduce myself and game and wishes in this section before considering moving to the game development section which seemed to be for ready to play games.
at the moment I have very simple rules 'for my benefit' scribbled on various pieces of paper. this early design is mostly for my understanding and some of it would need to be translated for use by 'players'. I did start typing basic rules for understanding and comparison with other games and beginning a new character from scratch. but part of my comparisons involved The Better Universal Role-playing Game System (BURPS) my modification for GURPS and i immediately got side tracked typing the BURPS rules out, a game I hadn't touched in over 10 years, for people to know what i was talking about and how to use it with the GURPS game should they find it to their amusement.
I did spent half a week after that designing as much of my game, which I adventurously call Bunnies & Beasties, without any breaks or sleep for the game-convention at the game shop held on February 19th. In that 12 hour game I GMed players could design modern and futuristic characters as well as supers and typically all kinds of fantasy classes. I needed no special rules for modern and futuristic except a list of weapons. I was able to convert most of the powers from Champions the super heroic game by I.C.E. but I didn't have time to create rules for fantasy classes and their skill options. The game world I used on the day was Torg's earth. I am very loath to GM or create adventures in the world the game is meant to be designed for until I am ready and there are players/testers ready and willing to go through it fully and officially. The one time i was able to get a group of players to start the world's campaign for the books I had to stop it almost immediately due to what I consider extreme player error's.
To describe how the game rules affect game play...if you could ever find a copy or source explaining the Torg universe. that would help... I would at this genesis phase call the similar to basic dungeons and dragons for character design and choices of races classes and equipment. but I strive to have game play cinematic with many feats of heroism as found in Torg games. The game uses 2D10 for everything involving 'chance'. skill rolls, combat and damage, 'saving throws'. the majority of character abilities will be a simple (to complex) formula of stat bonus + skill rank added to 2D10 whenever they get used.
let me start converting paper to word document today. I probably wont finish so it could be sometime next week where i can move the word document to a google doc to send a link of some rules I've decided on so far.
and I may be known as Jan by all here as well as by all in the role-playing field globally.


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: dreamborn on February 25, 2011, 08:10:27 AM
Ssem, wrote “I started writing a specific fantasy novel in a game world of my design back in the early 80s. this failed mostly to my lack of imagination”
Dreamborn, “It didn’t fail it was just put on the back-burner!  If it is a good idea for you its time will come.”

Ssem, “one of the gamers in a group i was in at that time when i first started creating the game listened to my description of the world and posted an advert of it on the groups forums as ... Adventures in the land of Jan, where an experienced party of heroes can get wiped out by a single rabbit.”
Dreamborn, “Don’t take it too hard.  In my experience the online community can be very harsh, or supportive.  If you are behind it try to make it happen.”

Ssem, “twenty years have passed since then without me having anyone to help with the game design or play testing. I've creating a few hundred different game rules and either thrown them away or lost them. a gaming shop opened almost outside my house over a year ago and i tried advertise my game there and up until about October last year i have had less than no success.”
Dreamborn, “Yes I have experienced a similar situation also.  I wouldn’t try to advertise your game solely at a brick and mortar store.  The internet is potentially your vehicle to advertise.  Also I would recommend volunteering to run your game at the local shop if they have that option.”

Ssem, “I will freely admit to everyone that I rape and steal every possible rule from every game I find.”
Dreamborn, “Be sure to give credit if your take it verbatim, otherwise it is plagiarism/copyright issues.  Also, remember what can and can not be patented.  It is the application/method used that is key.  You cant patent algorithms or a formula, you can only patent the enabling application as described in the claims.  Just make sure you don’t violate copyright/plagiarism issues.”

Ssem, “am looking for rules that grant various combat maneuvers to any and every fighting style, I think some people call them katas.”
Dreamborn, “Every marital art has them, even western styles.  Look at De Silver’s Paradoxs of Defense, written in 1600 AD.  The key here they are unique to the system.  Musashi, (arguably greatest swordsman ever) eventually came to the conclusion the best system is the system with no katas.  That is the way I have done it in my gaming system.”

Good luck and welcome

Kent Krumvieda
www.dreamborn.com


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: Gregor Hutton on February 25, 2011, 08:17:54 AM
Thanks Jan

Yes, I'm familiar with TORG and other "MasterBook" games (I was looking through my boxed set of Shatterzone the other night) so I know where you are coming from.

Putting your ideas down in a Word/Google doc is a good idea. It gives a foundation that you and everyone else can refer to.

It's probably best to leave discussions of the system and what you want out of it until we have the Google doc. And take as much time as you need to get the doc together, there is no rush.

All the best,
Gregor


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: ssem on February 25, 2011, 10:28:09 AM
Greg- am hoping I will get what I can done by Monday latest. looks like we've been moved to the gaming forums. I thought I needed a link to the rules of my game to be allowed to post in this area. and as I need a minimum of 3 posts to send a tell to the moderators about the exact terms and conditions mentioned I didn't know how to proceed,

Kent-yes that gaming group overreacted to my description of the world. I've always had trouble trying to explain what's in my mind to others so that they can see what's there. as a result they didn't want to take the time to generate heroic characters who will die to anything cute and fluffy.
ever since the gaming shop, Chimera, opened. I've constantly offered to be a Gm there as well as ask around for play testers. It is a shop as a secondary purpose, and a store to host every non computer game that could be played at a table primarily.
indeed I make public where I get my rules ideas from. that is my way of honouring other game producers and I am constantly worried that some stuck up company will attack me for it. I ran a Rolemaster Game set in the world of Conan for a group of players who most were employees of the ultra hated games workshop. they noticed the map I had drawn for the game was on a hex sheet sold by games workshop and they half heartedly threatened to take me to court for using a games workshop product for a non games workshop game. I secret believe that my game system is Dungeons and Dragons 2nd Edition (nothing to do with the AD&D 1st to 4th editions owned by WotC) but I know it will only be in my heart and mind and I will never be able to even hint my system as being anything to do with the original D&D game.
the main reason I am trying to create combat manoeuvres for the game is that the world the game is based on is mostly high level manga style fantasy. I want characters (and players) from other main stream fantasy games to 'appear' in that world and feel bland and colourless compared to warriors of that world. sort of the experience a western medieval man at arms would feel if he were to visit a Chanbarra saturated orient. The alternative combat moves which anyone can try in my game aren't enough to show this high skilled flowery melee.
but as Greg said, first things first, create a link to some makeshift rules before getting into a heated discussion. (Heh musashi, I have the stats of miyamoto usagi in my system for comparison :))


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: dreamborn on February 25, 2011, 01:27:29 PM
Greg wrote, "gaming group overreacted to my description of the world. I've always had trouble trying to explain what's in my mind to others so that they can see what's there:"
Dreamborn, "That happens but take it as a datapoint, one of hopefully many.  But it is a feedback or sorts"

Greg wrote, "the main reason I am trying to create combat manoeuvres for the game is that the world the game is based on is mostly high level manga style fantasy."
Dreamborn, "Ah, I begin to see.  It may be hard to capture a visual in a gaming system, but I would like to be proven wrong.  I will eagerly wait then until monday to see the draft"

Miyamoto Musashi wrote, “Do nothing which is of no use.  The important thing in strategy is to suppress the enemy's useful actions but allow his useless actions.  You should not have any special fondness for a particular weapon, or anything else, for that matter. Too much is the same as not enough. Without imitating anyone else, you should have as much weaponry as suits you.  The primary thing when you take a sword in your hands is your intention to cut the enemy, whatever the means. Whenever you parry, hit, spring, strike or touch the enemy's cutting sword, you must cut the enemy in the same movement. It is essential to attain this. If you think only of hitting, springing, striking or touching the enemy, you will not be able actually to cut him.  Know your enemy, know his sword."

 


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: dreamborn on February 25, 2011, 01:47:11 PM
Opps I meant to say Ssem, not greg.  Sorry greg.


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: ssem on February 26, 2011, 10:37:33 AM
just posting to say I'm still alive. copied 5 pages onto Word and that's taken over 6 constant hours to do.
Kent- my nasty side loves proving people wrong in everything. but I will endeavour to curb my evil nature most of time while posting here. however I believe almost nothing is impossible, especially where role-playing games are concerned. decades ago I let people, who claimed such and such wasn't possible, get me down and give up trying. many times since then I've seen the so called impossible and now translate a critics term of impossible, as meaning impossible for him, and not everyone else. a classic example. '' hey Paul, I want my game to compare values within normal human max and mins meaningfully, and also to handle super human ranges that compare with normal humans meaningfully too, without the rules breaking down on me like it does in so many other games (here I quote GURPS to him and rant briefly about how I hate Steve Jackson and his highly inferior game) can you help me design such a system?''
Paul replies '' what you ask for is impossible, you can't have normal human ranges together with super human ranges and make them fit together''
that chat happened fairly far down my gaming history and so while he response dismayed me, I didn't give up and take his claim as gospel. infact I can quote both Fuzion and Torg that do this more or less really well.
So I will be more than happy to prove you wrong, not in an antagonistic way, but rather in such a proving it will mean I have yet another game rule element for my system.


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: Ron Edwards on February 26, 2011, 10:53:25 AM
Hello,

I am willing to spot you some time in getting your external document ready.

Best, Ron (moderator post, in response to the implied question)


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: dreamborn on February 26, 2011, 02:16:21 PM
Ssem, I am more than willing to wait.  It took me and my group years to get our thoughts down about Omnificent Role-playing System (ORS).  It is only now available for people to download.

"itimi non carborundum"!  (Don't let the bastards wear you down!)

Kent Krumvieda
www.dreamborn.com


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: ssem on February 26, 2011, 03:05:50 PM
thanks Ron.
I've done 8 hours of MS Word typing. was calling it a night and decided to move what I've done so far to google docs. the transfer succeeded. but the doc couldn't translate the very first table in my Word document. that's a massive mess on google but the rest of the document is fine. I'm a bit of an egotistical perfectionist and would hate for people to see the mess google docs made. is there another way to place my Word document on-line so that I can link what I've done so far?


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: Gregor Hutton on February 26, 2011, 04:03:08 PM
Hey Jan

You could try uploading to http://www.scribd.com/ or a free online hosting company (filedropper, mediafire, etc.).

All the best,
Gregor


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: ssem on February 26, 2011, 04:21:17 PM
Thanks Greg
was searching Google for an on-line solution. my browsing ability is very poor. I did find MS Word Web and that I was already a member as I've created a hotmail for my role-playing group. tried for a long time to send my document there and ended up copying and pasting the document. no luck...all the tables and headers were omitted. think I need office 2010 to be able to use it fully.
off to scribd dot com I go. wish me luck. I'm sure computer experts (kids) will be sighing and doing face-palms at my incompetence.


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: ssem on February 26, 2011, 04:48:40 PM
http://www.scribd.com/doc/49616084/Bunnies-Beasties-Rules (http://www.scribd.com/doc/49616084/Bunnies-Beasties-Rules)

downloaded today's work on scribd. now if only i can work out how to link the document. the text and tables viewed on that site are really really tiny. there's an option to download it to word doc. there's not enough rules to create characters yet. and about 40% of the entire rules are undecided an highly open to advice for alterations.
crossing fingers that I did the link right.
tomorrow I'll add more of the rules and if I don't finish what I know then hopefully I will sometime Monday.
I really appreciate your patience. This is the first time in a very long time anyone has 'sat down' with me to learn the rules. translating what I know and take for granted for another requires some rules adjustments.


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: Ron Edwards on February 26, 2011, 06:15:03 PM
Shows up fine for me!

You are now officially recognized as in compliance with the forum requirements. (I couldn't type that with a straight face. Welcome, man!)

Now let's talk about the game.

Best, Ron



Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: ssem on February 27, 2011, 02:43:43 AM
Hehe thanks Ron, that's a big weight off my shoulders
Hmm how do I respond....compliance acknowledged Master. I really must go to robot school :)
While I continue to add more of the rules these next two days as promised my original question for the forum is still.. valid?

how can I create various manoeuvres for all fighting styles, not just martial arts. I was thinking of allowing those who passed the manoeuvre requirements to chose from a selection based on their fighting style for each increase of combat skill. I wanted some who had skill but not trained in these styles, usually grunts/minions/lackeys or those from a game reality where all you do in combat is hit and be hit. and I think 'generic' monsters and animals will only have combat skill and no manoeuvres- the griffin advances menacingly and performs the Conan Web of Death manoeuvre with its beak, in no time you are scattered about at random places on the ground with a look of shock and horror on your face- I think not.

In this I am searching through my numerous RPGs and scouring my mind of games, computer included, I've played. Some games have potential material, champions, torg, feng shui,(no I cant say it, argh I must) AD&D 4th Ed. I think I have Fuzion's sengoku somewhere, maybe that has something.


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: ssem on February 27, 2011, 12:16:27 PM
pesky technicalities. Mr anti-tech is baffled yet again.

just updated a whole page! woohoo! except when i upload it to scribd it doesn't override the old document and the exact link changes slightly. tried to upload twice and needed to delete the previous 2 docs. clicking on the link I posted on this thread gets me to a deleted doc. do I have to keep sending a new link with each change or can people see the latest version?

ah well here's the latest link. I intend to continue on it today so it will be out of date by tomorrow.
http://www.scribd.com/doc/49654459/Bunnies-Beasties-Rules (http://www.scribd.com/doc/49654459/Bunnies-Beasties-Rules)

To those (all of you) who aren't sure what I want from the game system. I want to eventually create a complete set of rules to cover every aspect of gaming in my Game World. This is something I feel requires hours and hours of sitting and chatting with someone who has dedicated themselves to helping me in this to make him understand clearly the type of World it is. So bear with me on this and don't be dismayed if I seem unwilling to answer questions about my World. In the process of creating these rules I want to incorporate a generic game system that can handle many different genres and styles without actually making it custom designed for any specific campaign or world. So don't be surprised when you see guns and swords and magic and psionics and super powers and such in my rules.


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: ssem on February 27, 2011, 01:38:02 PM
OK I'm done for today's downloading my game. all that seems left to do is print some gaming rules like combat options and interaction and anything else players can use to test the system out.
http://www.scribd.com/doc/49658775/Bunnies-Beasties-Rules (http://www.scribd.com/doc/49658775/Bunnies-Beasties-Rules)
maybe I'll think about what else do add overnight. I am toying with the idea of limiting various classes to certain skills by adding costs to skills or a skill level cap per level of character. while the current cap for levels and skills will remain the same I have this nagging feeling that characters don't have enough points to spend on skills. generating these class modifiers as well as spells and super powers will take a heck of a lot of thought and work on my part and so could well be put off for the near future.
So with the final page tomorrow that's all the rules I need to run adventures with this game..../whistle, thinking about my rules I recall something that I always supply with every game i create - a short list of MONSTERS and a few sample characters for me and others to compare. That shouldn't take me any time to add.
As of Monday I am free for all questions, criticisms, suggestions and clarifications about my game, set in an unknown world where regular adventurers fear to tread.


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: dreamborn on February 28, 2011, 09:10:41 AM
Hello Jan

I looked at the current upload.  I realize you have just started putting pen to paper, but I have a quick question.  You mentioned in a previous post you have a desire to "I am trying to create combat manoeuvres for the game is that the world the game is based on is mostly high level manga style fantasy."

Did I miss it?  I didn't see how you intend to do this.  Will this be in a future upload?

Just asking as that was one of the primary things we were talking about.

Kent Krumvieda
www.dreamborn.com


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: ssem on February 28, 2011, 09:31:08 AM
 i am still in the process of typing out random creature stats and then game play rules which i use. however there are no rules for special 'class' manoeuvres for characters with varying combat skills and i am looking through other games and trying to come up with some idea to use to create these manoeuvres these manoeuvres will be available to those who train in them not something others can do and so goes deeper than simple role-playing and describing flowery moves which any character can do..


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: dreamborn on February 28, 2011, 12:18:09 PM
Jan

I read the 10 page email over lunch.  Here are my comments so far on Bunnies & Beasties.  NOTE:  I am limiting my comments to this document as your vision should be in this document not as a post.  I understand as most do, you spent a long weekend to summarize these pages.  Doing charts in Word is a very time consuming thing.  I am wondering if this is the best expenditure of your time at this point.
1.    You need an introduction and perhaps a philosophy of your vision.  This is in words.  Take some time and put your dream into words.  Don’t minimize this task.  The introduction/executive summary is the first thing people will read AND if you don’t grab their attention here, they will not even read the rest of your document
2.   Now here comes the difficult part.  Personally this is hard to do for me also.  Why your system?  IF your system which seems to be a blend of D&D, Rolemaster, Earthdawn, Warhammer, Shadowrun and Whitewolf, is great, why is it great because you blended these elements?  This may be obvious to you but few will work hard to figure this out.  So help us.
3.   You seem very concerned on mapping other systems to your system.  This is usually done as an appendix but I find it interesting that you are doing this BEFORE you have even defined your system.  You state you eventually will have a level-less system but you seem unsure of how to incorporate Rolemaster’s Magic (your magic system) yet.  Perhaps you have this.  If so I would suggest you type these notes up first.  You have a unique opportunity to present your vision but you may lose it depending on your presentation.
4.   The Stat Comparison Chart.  Should I assume that you are writing a universal roleplaying system.  We have, fantasy, super heros, GURPS etc conversion so is this your goal.  NOTE this should be in Intro/Exec Summary.
5.   As a baseline giving a character the ability to lift his own weight, is a starting point.  Is this a bench press and dead lift?  Frankly the chart is a bit confusing.  A few more sentences would be helpful.  Is it desirable to be 87 feet tall in your system?  If so why?
6.   In regards to your 5 stats perhaps you could explain your understanding of these stats.  We can not read your mind.  If you want you could say I use the standard AD&D 1st edition definition, at which point everyone will understand where you are coming from.
7.   You define an average human having 1D8 hit points, just like in AD&D.  Note Gary Gygax went out of his way to clarify that a 1st level character is NOT an AVERAGE human.  A first level character in AD&D was vastly superior to an average human,  Even so, you are defining your mean (average), good.  I think I see where you are going with your description but you might want to break a table out with text for each stat.  Just a thought.
8.   Organization is confusing.  The Random Character Creation Rules are a good start but should have been presented earlier.  Most people, I am assuming here, will read it from beginning to end.
9.   Your starting characters are level 10?  That is nice, but is that the metric you recommend for everyone or is this just an example?  Wait!  I thought you said level-less? 
10.   The larger something is the easier it is to hit?  I would totally agree with projectile weapons.  But I don’t know about melee weapons or martial arts.  In boxing for example, people with longer reach are harder to hit than those with shorter arms….
11.   In regards to armor and damage…  You could always write a quick bit of code to see how it really pans out.
12.   Sample Weapon damage..  AD&D ‘like’ plus a luck factor?
13.   Skills List seems heavily biased at the moment.  Min/Maxers will take advantage of this if they can.
14.   NO I don’t want you to convert damages from D&D.  If you can’t present the system, pros, cons, advantages, coolness, then I don’t need t see it.  Also who says D&D even did the damages correctly?  Just using a formula to do a port isn’t a compelling argument for your system.
In conclusion.  You are full of enthusiasm, GREAT!  Take a breath, relax and introduce us to your system.  You need to sell your game.

Kent Krumvieda
www.dreamborn.com


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: ssem on March 01, 2011, 08:41:05 AM
oh my. you have given me so much to think about and more to actually do. as I type this I'm torn between answering your various question and adding to and adjusting the document. what to do what to do. certainly I will take your advice and mull it over without any rush or stress.
what can I say? I HAVE FEEDBACK FINALLY! some one is actually 'talking' to me! in this way i can reply to my own questions brought to life by another so that I can see the questions and answer them directly.
I shall compare you to someone who is a role-player and has played my games and everyone claims is my BEST friend. I have asked for his help with my system and he replies that it is not something he would enjoy doing and so answers no, not unless I employ him to work for me via money. and here comes a complete stranger who goes out of his way to study my system and chat with me about it.
thank you for giving my dream a visible direction.


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: Gregor Hutton on March 01, 2011, 10:14:13 AM
Hi Jan

Congratulations! You got your stuff down in a document, and it's a starting point. This is far easier said than done, and I know this from the number of people who talk about games or rules but don't try to do it or write them out.

I think Kent is on the money with some early questions, but I'll try coming at it from a different angle.

Imagine that you, Kent and me are sitting round a table. You are going to GM "Land of Jan", while Kent and I will be your players. Kent and I are keen and enthused to place "Land of Jan" with you here and now.

So, for the document...
1. How would you explain the game to us? Write down what you'd say to Kent and me around that table.
2. And the game world? And these can/should just be short enough so that we can create characters here and now. That is, the detail of the world and system we can find out later.
3. Then how do we create characters? What are our options? What sort of characters might Kent and I choose to play? What should we be playing in your idealized vision of play?
4. What advice would you be giving me and Kent on the options? Think about what you'd say to us to help us use your system.
5. Then, assuming that Kent and I have a pair of characters that fit, where are we at the start of the game?
6. What are we doing in the game world? Why are we doing these things?
7. And when we try to do these things how do the rules and procedures decide/control that?
8. How does play happen? What might you say to Kent and me? What might we say to you? When might we roll dice and so on.

So, take a deep breath and it's OK to think on this. No one is rushing here. It's taken a long time to get this far, so we're all good with doing this in its own time.

I'm super pleased that Kent has given feedback too. Thanks, Kent. This site is exactly about mutual help, and I think you have shown what a wonderful thing that is, and how much that is appreciated.

I'll try and find more time next week to give some more feedback on where I've had similar designs in the past, and what I got out of them.

All the best,
Gregor


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: ssem on March 01, 2011, 11:07:12 AM
lengthy reply to Dreamborn without actually acting on his advice at this stage (wipes sweat off borw-so much to do and consider)


(1) So true. I think I need to sit down in a quiet place and write my thoughts on paper and then add them to the document. It will be difficult for me because I don’t want to give anything about my game world away. I will have to try a describe something which isn’t there and that no one can perceive. That in itself will be a feat, but I think I know how: grab the readers attention, make them think you are describing something that will appear in their minds, yet in the explanations this image never forms and at the end I have passed on a lot of information except that which the curious are begging to hear.

(2) hehe you might be surprised to find I answered these questions in reverse order though posting them in the same order of the questions. So it feels to me I’ve covered this a bit. I think hidden in my rules I mentioned in small print that the purpose of the system is for my game world first, and everything else second. Maybe I am of a select few who freely admit their game is similar to others and that the other games have a strong influence to the design of the system. Other than D&D (0th edition as I call it to those who think AD&D is D&D), virtually every RPG in existence has copied rules from other game systems and they differ in that they will claim till they die that everything they’ve done is completely original with no influence whatsoever. I want players to clearly see where my rules are coming from so that when I write a rule it will seem familiar and not totally alien. As I claim in answer 3. I don’t think there’s anything great about my system compared with all other games. My original goal is for the game to work completely with my game world and I strive to search the gaming universe for any rule that could help achieve this.

(3) It is not a concern as such but rather an obsession of mine to see how I can compare various games together. I do feel the burning need to say this next: my rule system is no better than any other. All games have their pros and cons and it is down to individual tastes mostly that players chose a particular game to play. I absolutely refuse to try and sell this game to players by claiming they should use it instead of the games they are currently using. The system for my Bunnies & Beasties is a collection of rules taken or altered from other games or completely invented by myself or other players in an effort to create a ‘Universal Fantasy System’ that I am happy with. Up until I visited the Forge, everything in the game was put there for me, for my needs as a GM and adventure designer and world creator. Now I have to open the rules system to try and accommodate others who wish to try out the system for themselves.

(4) My system serves two purposes    1. I myself want to run any game I want with it, I usually GM in the Torg universe and that has virtually every gaming genre mishmashed together. If I or any other groups wish to adventure in a particular game world then I hope the rules here will be enough to convert the other game to use here.   2. The true goal of the system is to become the system that best works for my game world. Regardless of what I do with the system or where it takes me. The ultimate goal is to use the system to run a series of adventures with pre designed characters and a play testing group to play the adventures which I will then write as a book and publish.

(5) You know… you have hit a point I am not able to make a ruling on. I have actually done my best when GMing to avoid what a persons lifting ability actually means. I always say that a person can lift their STR’s measurement for free without rolling and move around with the weight indefinitely. I usually allow characters to lift this weight as high as they want and it is then some players argue realism. In the game play section will be a little table of how to exert your STR above the normal. As this is a 2D10 roll it will count as the action for the round. And of course a character can use his lifting skill instead. The concept of being in different positions and the weight being at different heights compared to the character is not something I feel I am qualified to quantify…. Size…while a person Size comes with advantages and disadvantages…I do want my game world to view big creatures as more scarier than tiny creatures (not counting bunnies). Some could argue it’s a purely psychological aspect when a 5ft5’’ wimp comes face to face with a 7ft muscle-bound barbarian and his knees start to give way. I want this fear to be purely physical and rational… the bigger they are, the harder they hit and the harder it is to hurt them… thus smaller characters will feel, rightly, scared when fighting a much bigger opponent.

(7) that is my definition yes. I define heroes by their skills and stats and other little details, such as the option to let all heroes and villains have 7 extra Hit Points. There are a few other little tweaks that separate heroes from Joe to be printed in the game play section. (6) Text for stats? The 5 base stats? Yes I could, though to me they are subconsciously understood and I might struggle to add a description that isn’t too blatantly obvious.

(8) I know and I apologise for the chaotic ordering. I have almost zero ability to make presentations and a sexy girlie has offered to help me stating that she can do things like proofreading and such. Maybe she can help me present the rules in an order that makes sense and is easier on the reader to follow.

(9) Yes I want the final published product to not need any levels for players and GMs using the system for their own purposes. However I use levels to convert and compare various games with my system as well as known creatures and heroes. The characters in my game world originated from D&D and so have levels and such. Once I’ve designed my system I will need to convert them and flesh them out in a points based fashion. This non level style will allow me to create characters that break the conventional level mould, which I have to say is just about 80% of everyone in my game world. Level 10 in this system is the level of starting heroes in the Torg universe. I have some concept of what hero means. Someone better than the average Joe who both more talented and skilled than poor Joe and has had enough world experience to gain some small fame and knowledge that he is a cut above the rest. A lot of games are out there where the starting characters are on a similar level to Torg heroes. I would highly recommend this ‘level’ of power for beginning adventures.
Imagine my utter disdain when I played my first AD&D 4th Ed game. Woohoo starting ‘heroes’ had an average of 14 in their stats, and the characters are already heroes and better than Joe and his kind, according to the GM. Ready to perform heroic deeds we set out and are ambushed by some goblins. We are heroes. Everyone knows goblins are weaker than peasants. HAH! These goblins don’t stand a chance. What’s this? All the goblins have the same stat values as us? And they are level 2 and 3?! And they all have more Hit Points than our tank?! And they are all utilising various combat powers like us?! Heroes, yeah right. Welcome to Runequest and Rolemaster where the starting characters are weaker than the weakest lowest level humanoids.

(10) With this system a larger creature will by default have a lower average DEX, but the DEX penalty is less than the STR and Size bonus for melee ability and damage. A creatures Size only affects the parry value indirectly from the lowered DEX. And for non PCs a creatures Size is usually proportional to their Hit Dice and thus their Combat ability. Size generally affects Dodge ability more. In the game play section to be produced all opponents with enough intelligence to have self preservation and desire to kill the opponent more can interchange their Melee Adds, damage bonus and Parry Adds. So a big and strong, and skilled opponent with low DEX can take off some of his high Melee Adds to add to either his damage or Parry or both on a one for one basis.

(11) Well, I really want to consider everything and all angles. I want worn armour to be encumbering but not more crippling than the protection it gives a proper fighter. I keep adding and deleting rules and modifiers because sometimes they seem too much and sometimes without them is not enough. (Hinting his game world) the system needs to be able to handle as much as I can throw at it from my game world without the rules falling apart. In this I try converting creatures and characters from all around to poke the skin of the game to see if its starts bleeding anywhere. (Forced to open a window into his world) I want an average human sized epic hero to face a titanic, say, 30 foot tall God - whose stats and skills are far beyond mortal ken. This titan has no weaknesses, except personality, and is better than any human in every fantasy profession – and I want the hero to win. Yes I know that 99% of readers will say ‘Impossible!’ and yes in every game I’ve come across it has been impossible, but I want my game to cope with as much shrapnel as possible and then I need to go and look at these 2 antagonists and arrange a way that makes the impossible POSSIBLE!

(12) everything in the game that involves chance to some degree is resolved with a roll of 2D10 + whatever is being used, usually against a TN of 11 + modifiers for difficulty or opposed abilities. Skill rolls, damage rolls, saving throws, attacks and anything else the Gm and players can think of. In direct answer to your question, very much like D&D: 2D10 + weapon modifier + STR for melee + Luck – the opponents total armour value = damage done.

(13) Yes, I’ve noticed in the rare games I’ve done, players selected only a few skills and put all their points in them. Charisma does have a use other than simple peaceful talking. Taunt and intimidate are valid combat attacks that weaken opponents. These everyman combat options I need to do ASAP so people can see how game play works. Unfortunately this game play style is not my own, I use Torg and D&D rules to decide what characters can and cant do. I had developed an xp system that was to allow characters with low stats an advantage over characters with high stats. It was this change in rules that caused one of my gamers to leave. His argument was that my rules were to avoid power gamers abusing the system, yet it was crippling his character. He claimed that he and the other players in the group weren’t power gamers yet he neglected all his skills except 2 combat skills which he kept increasing to the point combat was no longer a challenge unless I constantly hosed him. And it furthered his argument because the stat used for the skills was high. He refused to return unless I changed the rules back and let him increase his 2 skills without limit, he claimed that all good GM’s listen to the players and change the game rules whenever the players tell him to. I am first to admit I’m not a very good Gm but I strive to modify the game for the players as best I can within reason. This feedback and reaction of his hurt me greatly.

(14) Answered in mail.


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: ssem on March 01, 2011, 12:04:20 PM
Morning Greg ( a bit woozy from replying to the all wise Kent, no that isn't sarcasm or put down)

my first answer to Kent's first question mirrors some of what I say here. describing the game and the adventures we could play together that I would be willing to GM for you and others is vastly different from describing and playing the adventures I would run in my game world.

call me a zealous and suspicious and overly protective writer. but I will allow no one from the general public a peek into my game world and I will never consider running adventures in my game world until a specific portal in time has been unlocked. the requirements for the will be after the game system has completed, after I've run the set adventures in my world with a group of play testers playing pre-set characters, and after the books on such adventures have been published satisfactorily. only then will I open my world for public use and will have to create source books for the various continents and peoples. I apologise for coming across as cold and stern. but I want all rights to my game world to belong to me and no one else until I've done what I wanted and no one else has made it public.

Now having said that I will answer your questions as best I can. There are 5 pre designed fantasy characters to chose from with their own personalities and backgrounds. The characters are in a generic fantasy world and are minor heroes. I will ask you both (and the other 3 players, assume there's 6 of us at the table) to design 2 level 2 characters each. Based on their level you will have a certain number of points to spend on stats and skills and will have a limited selection of free spells based on your character type. You can chose virtually any fantasy race in such a bland environment without restriction: elves, dwarves, humans, halflings. There might be special rules for no humans to make sure they balance out point wise. I would tell you not to get as attached to these characters as you should the main five. I will forewarn the players that the adventure is highly dangerous and that the 'extras' are meant to cushion the dangers. You could ask anything about the world the characters are in and my answers wouldn't be too revealing. I would let each player have in their own mind what they think a generic fantasy world is like. I will tell you what quest you've started and what the goals of the quest are and what your orders are. I will tell you that the entire world is at war. evil has overrun the world and is systematically killing the innocent. every living person has to take up arms and do what they can to survive. your auxiliary characters can be equipped as the players see fit. I never quibble about currency in my games, either you have enough money or you don't, either the shop has the item you want or it doesn't. In this particular I wouldn't try to steer the players in what characters the wanted to design. It is a time of war and combat will be involved. If the players want to grow attached to one of these cannon fodders then I wont deter them. If they were on the side of evil, they wouldn't be in the party. I could always suggest a wide selection of classes to round off the main heroes weaknesses. where are the characters once created? together at the very start of an epic adventure with the gods watching them. what they do will have a direct impact on an entire world. scared? I'm sorry its too late to turn back now.

That is the answer I have for characters in my game world. Hi! I'm Jan the mad GM. Welcome to my gaming group! Before you decide on what characters to play, let me first tell you about the world they are in. Its Earth and Invaders have come from somewhere else. Who they are and why they chose Earth you don't know. You do know they are pure evil and their intent is to some how rape the planet before destroying it and all life. With them come a near infinite supply of armies and they have usurped their reality over the areas they've conquered so far. These realities are alien to Earth all within have to abide by the laws of the realities. For example on Earth  there is no magic or miracles or super powers or futuristic science. These things don't exist normally on Earth and if they did, the Reality of Earth would forbid their use. So when the invaders came with their realities, most of these forbade the use of technology of modern Earth and so the various countries' armies' weapons and vehicles and equipment stopped working. Earth didn't stand a chance, and now there are only a few pockets of resistance fighting the invaders on their own without any outside help. You are one such group fighting back the enemy alone to save all life on the planet. you are heroes of the war on earth and you fight for every part of Earth and a lot of your fights involve travelling a lot through various realities across the globe. You can choose virtually any type of character. you are all level 10 and we don't use fantasy professions. think of any heroic character from any genre you want to play and we can discuss the rules governing such characters and how they fit in such a world. the key thing is you are heroes fighting for the people of Earth. you cannot be evil, and if neutral you have to have some selfless spark or goodness to fight the good fight. it is an ongoing war your characters are in so creating any characters with little or no fighting ability will either get them beaten up constantly or they will be stuck for things to do a lot of the time. but remember you aren't just heroes. you are the heroes that authors write about and that film makers direct. you are the audiences favourite characters who kick ass constantly and make the baddies look inept and comical.


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: Gregor Hutton on March 01, 2011, 12:20:16 PM
Hello Jan

Reading that I wanted to point you to this thread: http://www.indie-rpgs.com/forge/index.php?topic=31217.0

Cheers,
Gregor


Title: Re: a game originally called: adventure in the land of Jan
Post by: dreamborn on March 01, 2011, 01:34:28 PM
Jan

Glad you liked the comments from Dreamborn the wise-ass, um I mean Dreamborn the wise.

No offense taken and after taking years to get ORS to where is currently is I will just be happy if it becomes a reality.  Needless to say I have no plans on retiring based on ORS.  It was/is a labor of love.

Kent Krumvieda
www.dreamborn.com