So, recently I started on a project. I'm combining the core rules book and the ODA into one compiled work. I figured it'd be easier than flipping back and forth between the two, and when finished I intend to submit it to basicfantasy.org as a PDF in hopes that'll be available to anyone that would like it. Most of it will remain intact, just sorted and arranged as appropriate; ie, all the races together, all the classes together, etc., but some decisions needed to be made although nothing that will alter gameplay (much). Assassins are listed as a subclass of thieves, sorcerers are subclassed under magic-users, jesters are a class of their own. With the moderator's permission I'll post updates here and may occasionally ask for an opinion. The first major decision I had to make was the carrying capacity of the new races. I gave half-orcs and half-elves the same carrying capacity as humans, elves and dwarves (60 light, 150 heavy), but gave half-ogres a base of 75/175. Any comments or suggestions are welcome.
So far, the Introduction remains unchanged, the characters & spells sections are combined, and I'm working on the adventure section.
Nice idea. I had thought of doing something like it myself (but just for my own use); basically just adding the races that I cared to use personally, classes, spells, etc. I had also intended to make my own house-rule tweaks into the document also. I was never going to share the material doctored in such a way though.
As a useful tool for all to use, I would suggest that you somehow mark or notate when something is optional/supplemental. Something as small as a check box next to the entry could be utilized so that an individual GM could decide which items are inclusive to his or her personal campaign. Regardless of how you manage it, an Expanded Complete Edition of BFRPG might be a very popular version... especially if you get the table of contents and indexes updated completely.
The idea of noting what was ODA material or my own additions did cross my mind. I may add an occasional note where I've made any kind of change they would affect game play (such as the Half-Ogre carrying capacity, or the integrating of the new spells into the spell listings). Things that won't affect game play won't be pointed out. (Calling Assassins a subclass of Thieves doesn't change how they play.)
The other thing I was wondering is if I should integrate some of the other projects like Illusionists, Druids, Sentient Weapons, etc, and if so, which ones? Or should I look at combining all those at a later date as the ODA2? Combining all the material (except for the modules, of course) would be a daunting task, and I'm not sure it's one I'm willing to tackle.
Before I call it final I'd like to send a copy to a few different people to proofread. Maybe a section or two to each; people are more likely to catch all the errors in a small section rather than trying for go through the whole thing. I'm currently working with Word 2007, but the final will be a PDF. Any volunteers?
One other note: I do intend on finishing the document with a character sheet similar to James D. Jarvis' with all the page numbers for the completed work. I think he had a great idea with that. --- "Expanded Complete Edition of BFRPG". I was trying to think of how to title this. "2nd Edition Plus" sounded too much like a commercial (It's new and improved! Order yours today!) and "3rd Edition" seem too presumptuous. If Mr. Gonnerman wants to call it 3rd Edition that's his decision to make. Just not "2.5", ok?
Last edited by Latex Spikes on Sun Sep 06, 2009 11:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
I've been looking at the secondary skills and how to work them in with the new classes. As written, Barbarians, Rangers, Paladins, Sorcerers, Assassins and Jesters only have access to the general skills, unless you allow the fighter subclasses access to the fighter skills as well. I am considering (or have already done) the following changes:
1) Putting ALL the skills into one big pile and making a chart of who gets what. Not really a change in itself, just another way of laying out the skills. The main reason is to make other changes easier to work with. Something like:
Knowledge is also being broken down into seven separate skills (the six listed under knowledge plus the thieves' knowledge (rumors around town). I'll probably expand on the descriptions of the first six just so they're more consistent with the rumors skill.
2) Some classes (if not all) will get a skill point in certain areas automatically. The first step away from the original secondary rules skill. There are some skills that I feel certain classes should have automatically; Rangers should know riding, Jesters should know how to tumble. I haven't gone through every class and skill yet, but I intend to. I'll post my opinions here and, as always, I'll welcome the input of others.
3) Not everyone will have access to what's currently under the general category. For the most part this will be unchanged; just a few minor tweaks here and there. Some didn't seem to quite fit. Barbarians with a background in Alchemy or Engineering is the first one that leaps to mind.
4) "If the character has a background or additional knowledge in a skill...." Dropping that. My opinion is that the skills should be picked with the character's background in mind. Ok, you can select Craft- Blacksmithing for being the son of a blacksmith. While you were doing that, other players were learning to swim, ride, etc.
5) Adding "- STR" after the Labor skill. I believe this was just a minor oversight.
6) Optional Skills Rules section: I plan on writing the first part into the main rules, but I'm dropping the second part. In the beginning of the secondary skills section is says you get 3 skill points per level after the first level, but under optional skills rules it says you get 1 point for each Charisma bonus (1 minimum). Charisma? Really? Wisdom or Intelligence makes more sense to me, but either way, I'm writing it as 3 per level. Like every other rule in the book, individual GMs can play it as they see fit.
I'd like to add pictures for the Half-Elf, Half-Orc, and Half-Ogre races to keep them consistent with the other race descriptions. I'd also like to add graphic on the Magic-User page to assist with page layout. I may also want some more graphics to assist in page layouts as I go on. I don't want to over do the graphics; this is a rules book, not an art book. If you've got some drawing skills and would like your art in my compilation, please send them to me at email@example.com along with your name for the credits. I'll decide which ones I like and put them in my version of the rules, but Chris Gonnerman will have the final say if he wants the new graphics, no new graphics, or someone else's work. No whining if either one of us doesn't use your drawing. Keep them appropriate to the game and to a family setting. Rocket wielding topless amazons need not apply.
By submitting a drawing you're stating that it's your original work, that you own the rights to it, and you're giving Basic Fantasy full rights to the work to use as they see fit, even if that means it ends up lining a bird cage. There my be some other legal hoops to jump through, but I'll leave that to Chris to worry about.
I have been working on a reworking of the Monsters as Races supplement, and I realized that I needed to go over some of the information on Combination Classes to accommodate traditional offerings. Here is that text, which might find a place within the Dungeoneer's Almanack (amending (all or in part) the text found on page 3 of the Almanack). -----------------------------------
Recapping and extrapolating upon the core rules, to become a member of a combination class, a character must meet the requirements of both classes. Combination class characters use the best attack bonus and the best saving throw values of their original two classes.
When allowed by the Game Master, certain optional subclasses might be allowed as a component of the combination class. The Game Master may allow or disallow any particular combination class option based upon the race involved, campaign circumstances, or other factors. As always, the GM is the ultimate judge on this.
Fighter/Magic-User: These characters may both fight and cast magic spells. Some races retain armor use in varying degrees such as Elves having the ability to utilize any armor and still cast spells. A Fighter/Magic-User must gain experience equal to the combined requirements of both base classes. Fighter/Magic-Users roll six-sided dice (d6) for hit points.
Cleric/Magic-User: These rare characters combine the features of divine and arcane spell casters. Humanoid races often call these practitioners Witch Doctors, while other more civilized races often call them Theurgists. Generally, Cleric/Magic-Users do not have the ability to cast arcane spells in armor. Some races retain armor use in varying degrees such as Elves having the ability to utilize any armor and still cast spells. Cleric/Magic-Users must abide by the weapon restrictions of the Cleric class. Cleric/Magic-Users must gain experience equal to the combined requirements of both base classes, but get to roll six-sided dice (d6) for hit points.
Magic-User/Thief: A Magic-User/Thief may wear cast spells while wearing leather armor, and may use any weapon allowed by the base classes. A Magic-User/Thief must gain experience equal to the combined requirements of both base classes. These characters roll four-sided dice (d4) for hit points.