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Realms of Wonder (not BFRPG compatible)

Posted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 11:07 pm
by Solomoriah
I've just put out a new release:

Realms of Wonder r7 -- August 5, 2009

After a few days of thinking, I've put together another release. Most of the spells are done, the combat rules are polished up (with details about initiative and order of action filled in, and dodging and parrying added), some of the background material improved, and finally, some organizational changes.

NOW... I need to playtest the combat rules. So I'm proposing a test, right here online. The first ever Anderian Warrior Federation SMACKDOWN!

Anyone interested should PM me. I'll take the first two people willing to actually read the combat rules. We'll start by generating some warriors, and then we'll pit them against each other. Along the way, I expect I'll figure out what parts of the rules are hard to understand, and what just plain doesn't work (whether it needs tweaked or pitched).

Re: My "other" game... Realms of Wonder

Posted: Thu Aug 06, 2009 4:45 pm
by Solomoriah
Well, THAT was a resounding silence...

Let me try to "sell" this a bit better. Games like old-school D&D use very abstract combat systems; in most rounds of combat, a fighter rolls for initiative, then on his turn he rolls to hit. More "modern" games (like the current D&D editions) grant to the fighter an ever-increasing list of powers (feats) to choose from, most taken more or less directly from comic books.

Read a pulp fantasy novel and you see combat that is abstract, but not so abstract... different strategies for different fighters, and not everyone looks just the same. Face it, in classic D&D, fighters who haven't yet gotten their hands on any magic generally go for plate mail, shield, and longsword. Cookie cutter.

Realms of Wonder provides a brief, tight, yet detailed approach to combat. The armor rules, combined with the dodge and parry rules, lead to some fighters being like the "tanks" of D&D (heavily armored with a shield and sword) and others looking entirely different, with light or no armor and some entirely different weapon; and combat should be similarly interesting, due to the several choices a player might make in a given round. A recounting of a combat in RoW should sound very much like a similar fight in a swords & sorcery story.

There is a bit of a learning curve, but the ruleset is small and should be able to fit into your brain with a little practice. However, I'm sure the rules aren't as clear as they could be, and they may well have problems besides that; so I need to playtest them.

I'd like two players to join in here. Each will create a warrior using the standard rules for character generation, and then they will fight each other. Each battle will be fought until one or the other character goes down; then, both will get to roll their experience gains, and we'll review the battle. Then we start again, with tougher characters, thus stressing the rules from low to high "level."

I'd like to hold the "fight" in the thread on Dragonsfoot, mainly because it gets more traffic overall; I'm hoping to create a buzz with this, maybe find a few people who'd like to try something beyond (A)D&D and the clones thereof for a change.

This is NOT going to replace BFRPG in any way! This is a different game, for a different world, with a different feel, and there absolutely is room for both styles of game in the world.

Re: My "other" game... Realms of Wonder

Posted: Thu Aug 06, 2009 5:53 pm
by SmootRK
I am interested in looking it over, if only for ideas to incorporate into my main game. Like I said in another thread about 'other basic games/settings', I would prefer to play only one main system (BFRPG to be exact, but it is effectively just D&D to me), and have knowledge of a few more (mainly I love Star Frontiers also (another fine old-school game)). I look over a few other systems to see how they do things, and small tidbits might make good ideas for inclusion.

I have not looked at your other game yet, but plan to when possible (and time allows). I would state that perhaps if it covered another sort of setting/genre it might draw more interest than just adding to the plethora of standard fantasy games. Maybe if it took on something weird like future+fantasy (Thundar style), modern+sci-fantasy (Xfiles etc), or went Early Explorer+some fantastic (Tarzan, King Kong, Solomon Kane, etc)... then your mechanics might get a jump start from those who are looking for 'something different'.

Again, I will check it out soon. I am sure it is worthy of exploring... just look at what you have done for BFRPG!!

Re: My "other" game... Realms of Wonder

Posted: Thu Aug 06, 2009 10:34 pm
by Solomoriah
Realms of Wonder is mechanically very different, and Anderia may be fantasy, but it's not D&D fantasy. Things work differently there. A look through the character races, or the monsters, should give that away. More fey, more "storybook," more mythic... less wargame, less "kill the monster, take the treasure."

Nothing wrong with the D&D way, mind you. Just that this is a different way. I don't eat the same food every day, after all, so why play the same game?

Project 74 Supplement for BFRPG

Posted: Wed Aug 06, 2014 12:09 pm
by Dimirag
Solo, have you eve though on using your Project 74 rules to make one or more supplements for BF?

I can see some interesting rules like the Ability modifier, the skill mechanic (along with the thieving skills), spell replacement, simplistic saving throws, etc etc...

Re: Project 74 Supplement for BFRPG

Posted: Wed Aug 06, 2014 4:12 pm
by Solomoriah
Funny you should mention this, since I was paging through that game last night.

First of all, let me say that Project 74 was a failure. It did not do what I wanted it to do. Basic Fantasy RPG was inspired by that failure, so it wasn't a total loss, but still... no, I'm not making a supplement out of any part of it.

But why was I paging through it? Well, I have this other game that I keep working on but never get finished. It's called Realms of Wonder. I've talked about it here before:


The main page is here:

Realms of Wonder has a long, checkered history in my gaming group. Many years ago, I set out to write a game system. I was not prepared to do it, mind you, not nearly, but I thought I was. I mashed together parts of several different games I admired, trying to build a skill-based fantasy RPG. At the same time I created a world, Anderia, which was the site of the adventures we played using those rules.

One of my players called it "Reams of Wonder" because of all the changes and reprints I made. He was still using pages from the rules for scratch paper a few years ago, actually, and I wrote the game in 1984.

A couple of years ago I got the urge to run some adventures in Anderia, and I dug up the old rules, converted from AppleWorks (on the //e, of all things) to plain text and then to MS Word. They sucked more than I remembered. But I had hardly given up writing game systems. I borrowed rules from another game I wrote, one which I had never gotten to run, and I rewrote a bunch of the old material to go along with it. I even redrew the map. This was back in 2006, the same year I started BFRPG.

But playtests, both on Dragonsfoot and at my own table, showed me that those rules sucked also. I had tried to create a game with a proper Core Mechanic, and as I had learned with Project 74, it really doesn't work for me.

So I set it all aside and forgot about it. Oh, I messed with it here and there; the previous posts here on the forum were in 2008. But I couldn't figure out how to fix the game.

Late last week, as I made a long drive home from a customer site, I was thinking about the game for no particular reason, and I realized my mistake. Realms of Wonder needs to be more like BFRPG.

RoW isn't a class-and-level game, and it shouldn't be. Anderia doesn't work that way. But the low-roll system I was using was too limiting. I think I avoided a high-roll system because of d20, but really that's not necessary... I had high-roll games that worked well before d20 ever appeared.

I started rewriting it over the weekend. I changed the combat mechanic to one that would seem familiar to someone used to BFRPG or other similar games, removing a lot of the crunch and maneuvers from the rules. I changed the skill mechanic to work with high rolls, and I defined two different rolls vs. ability scores: a saving throw of 1d20 equal or less, and an ability roll using the abstract version of the 1-n on 1d6 mechanic.

The most important thing is, I made the game numerically equivalent to BFRPG and similar games. So equivalent that I could use BFRPG materials with these rules with a moderate amount of work (though of course I have no plans to do so... that would lose Anderia's special flavor). Beginning characters are about like 2nd level characters in BFRPG, very roughly speaking, and non-humanoid monsters map well between the two. Humanoid monsters need to be revised to work correctly, since they are all "character" (but not necessarily "player character") races in Anderia.

The advantage of this is I know pretty well by now how to balance a game like that. Innovative rules are a pain, I'm discovering.

So why was I looking at Project 74? Numerical equivalence means that I can borrow those bits of Project 74 that work with the new Realms of Wonder core, and I did exactly that.

The version of Realms of Wonder on the website now has been rewritten down to the Magic section. That section is begin gutted, as it's mostly crap, and replaced with something much simpler and maybe a bit more familiar, yet with some interesting options.

... I started out to answer you, really I did, but it turned into a blog post. Sorry. :D

Re: Project 74 Supplement for BFRPG

Posted: Wed Aug 06, 2014 4:39 pm
by Dimirag
Don't worry, I enjoyed the post, I have more than 10 game system under development, I have two huge problems: whenever I hit a wall I take a break and start a new system, or start one by using some rules that I like but don't fit into that other system, and second, I like my system to be different from each other (so I really struggle with having different mechanics).

I still think there are good rules to take from P74, in fact, this thread started because I'm doing a Saving Throw supplement (you know me, I don't like old ST), and ended up making the same ST that P74 (plus 4 more double saves, so each class has one table in case the GM wanted different values per class), I grabbed the P74 pdf and read some rules that I like (and some that I am planning to use on my houserules where present there!).

Mixing game parts is like the first step into creating rpg rules (I have a acquaintance that played with me both Marvel Superheroes and WitchCraft, so, what did he do when he wanted to create his own game? he mixed both systems... it was an ugly mess). But its the same that happens to most drawing students (I used to be one), at some point you want to do a comic (if that's what took you into drawing), even if you know you can't draw half the things needed, but you still do just to see that it was right that you could not do it, but after that you really start progressing.

Like mu teacher says: Its a necessary mistake that frees you so you can become better at that an more.

Re: Project 74 Supplement for BFRPG

Posted: Wed Aug 06, 2014 7:24 pm
by Jered Taikith
Just putting in a quick aside here because Dimirag mentioned hitting walls. I'd hit one big one while working on a campaign setting until today when I swallowed pride and basically begged for -1warrior to act as sounding board / second head. He was very kind and agreed and we met for a chat over on roll20. Chatted for quite a while (probably a lot longer than he'd intended but he was very kind and didn't mention it). Long story short. This chat did the trick and we busted that wall right down. Anywho. I've bookmarked RoW and am looking forward to reading it because designing games is something I love to do also although I'm much better at designing board games than rpgs so far.

Project 74 Supplement for BFRPG

Posted: Wed Aug 06, 2014 8:45 pm
by Jered Taikith
Solomoriah, I've been reading RoW and I notice that so far I don't see anywhere that states clearly what coin is being used on the equipment tables. I know you said that the silver centum is the standard coin so I assume that that is the coin but I'm not sure. Just thought I'd bring it to your attention. I like what I'm seeing so far though. :)

Re: Project 74 Supplement for BFRPG

Posted: Wed Aug 06, 2014 8:49 pm
by Jered Taikith
Never mind. I found it on page 5 under The Weapons Table Explained. Dur.