Beginner's Essentials

Creating game materials? Monsters, spells, classes, adventures? This is the place!
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Hywaywolf
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Re: Beginner's Essentials

Post Thu Apr 21, 2011 4:49 pm

To find a balance between a functional streamlined beginners essentials and an exciting streamlined beginners essentials will be a seesaw battle. Personnally I just want the rules that a 1st level player needs in one place without all the other confusing stuff. It doesn't need to sizzle.
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Solomoriah
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Re: Beginner's Essentials

Post Thu Apr 21, 2011 7:08 pm

Agreed. Seems fine to me as is.
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Sir Bedivere
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Re: Beginner's Essentials

Post Thu Apr 21, 2011 7:18 pm

josha wrote:I find the Begginer's Essentials a little plain and lifeless. Perhaps they should be presented in a format similar to the D&D 4e Red Box.
Ah, you mean this? http://wizards.com/dnd/Product.aspx?x=d ... /244660000

With all this?
* 32-page book for players, with rules for character creation and a solo adventure
* 64-page book for Dungeon Masters, with the rules of the game, advice on how to run the game, and adventure content
* 2 sheets of die-cut tokens for characters and monsters
* Cardstock character sheets and power cards
* Double-sided dungeon map
* 6 polyhedral dice
A BFRPG starter kit could be pretty useful if a whole group were just starting out. That might be a future project, or a project I would be interested in helping out with.

Beginner's Essentials, on the other hand, was designed with the idea that the GM, at least, would already be familiar with the game. Its purpose is to provide new players with a quick reference booklet that gets them through character creation and the first few playing sessions, basically until they know enough that the full Core Rules won't seem overwhelming. I intentionally kept it as brief as possible because I imagined the GM printing out several copies for his players and didn't want to deplete his supply of expensive printer ink. Initially, I envisioned a 10-page booklet and would have liked to have stuck to that, but a little overrun is acceptable.

I thought about taking it up to 2nd level, but that went beyond my goal of getting new players through the first few sessions, and it would have doubled the number of spells, adding several pages to the text. Maybe I'm being too parsimonious with printer ink? If enough people wanted it, I'd certainly add the second level stuff.
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Hywaywolf
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Re: Beginner's Essentials

Post Thu Apr 21, 2011 7:47 pm

I think it is fine the way it is. Don't let mission creep ruin a good thing.
Sir Bedivere
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Re: Beginner's Essentials

Post Thu Apr 21, 2011 9:19 pm

Hywaywolf wrote:Don't let mission creep ruin a good thing.
Sound advice. I would only add stuff if a number of people wanted it, and so far the votes are going the other way.

I should add that some votes are bigger than others, and if Solomoriah says it's fine as it is, that's probably how it will stay. I'm also happy that a BF veteran like yourself likes it the way it is.
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Joe the Rat
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Re: Beginner's Essentials

Post Fri Apr 22, 2011 9:12 am

emphasis mine
* 32-page book for players, with rules for character creation and a solo adventure
This is actually something I'd like to see - something along the lines of the choose-your-own-adventure-like piece from one of the Basic D&D sets (I'm not terribly edition-savvy, but I suspect someone knows which one I'm talking about). This doesn't really fit Beginner's Essentials, however. BE gives you the rules and information for getting going in the BFRPG system, not on roleplaying in general. For most of the audience, it would be pure fluff.

I think the 1st to 2nd/3rd level, art and narrative version with solo adventure to introduce you to both gaming and the BFRPG rules set would be a different document altogether.
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Solomoriah
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Re: Beginner's Essentials

Post Fri Apr 22, 2011 9:28 am

Joe the Rat wrote:I think the 1st to 2nd/3rd level, art and narrative version with solo adventure to introduce you to both gaming and the BFRPG rules set would be a different document altogether.
Indeed, and one I'm not interested in pursuing. Honestly, why do we need it? We have the whole game available for free download. Such introductory items are generally intended to convince people to buy the full version... we don't need that.
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Hywaywolf
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Re: Beginner's Essentials

Post Fri Apr 22, 2011 9:51 am

there is already so much information for BF. The reason I am such a fan of the Beginners Essentials is that it is everything a new player needs to know to play the game and nothing else. The DM can print it out or send the link to prospective players. They don't need to get bogged down with anything else, just read the essentials and show up for the game. The DM does the rest.

As for a guidebook for levels 1-3, that was what the original Basic D&D was and then the Expert rules came out. Now we had two books and had to flip back and forth between the two. BFRPG put it altogether. To go back to two books would seem rather circular.
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Joe the Rat
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Re: Beginner's Essentials

Post Fri Apr 22, 2011 10:22 am

In that light, yeah, it would be dividing rather than simplifying.

Take it off the table.
Sir Bedivere
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Re: Beginner's Essentials

Post Fri Apr 22, 2011 11:12 am

Hmm, I don't know. I kinda like the idea of an introductory set. A lot of people who might play OSR games are pretty isolated from others who already know how to play, so the point wouldn't be to get people to buy the bigger product, but rather to introduce OSR gaming to people who can't find a DM to "do the rest."

I'm not proposing any changes to Beginner's Essentials; we keep that as it is for the GMs who know how to do the rest and just want to introduce new players to the game.

However, think about this:

Take the BE material as a start, stick a name like "BFRPG Starter's Kit" on it, and expand it by a few pages to include an introduction to OSR role-playing (something Hyway suggested earlier) and all the stuff for second level PCs. Aim it at the guy who thinks the idea is cool but can't find a group to play with. Then, add in an 8- or 10-page solo adventure that would be both fun and instructional, so he can get a bit of the feel of playing the game (and catch the OSR bug). Top it off with a short 'Introduction to GMing': where to find adventures, how to make and run your own, and ideas for other BF downloads that could be useful. All of this could probably fit into 40 pages -- not too much to download & print out for someone who's interested, and a lot cheaper than buying the 4e Red Box mentioned above.

The goal would be to get our guy familiar enough with the rules that he felt confident GMing, and to make it fun and interesting enough to motivate him to do so.

This 'Starter's Kit' doesn't introduce Hyway's '2-book' problem because we already have the Core Rules. Once a gamer finishes with the Starter's Kit, he (or she) hands it off to a friend or kid brother / sister and downloads the Core Rules.
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