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PostPosted: Mon Aug 10, 2009 9:01 am 
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How do you like your game-mechanics?

As for myself, I like:

1) Rules-light, easy-to-prep, fast-play. Why? Because RL limits my prep time and I want to make the best out of the limited time for it; I also like to roll on with the action and plot of the game rather than spend too much time consulting the rulebooks during play (beyond a GM screen, a few GM notes and a few reference sheets, that is).

2) Single-dice (linear) or two-dice (curved) roll-high mechanics. Why? higher roll=better result is intuitive, and I can easily grasp the probabilities of success of either single-die (e.g. 1d20) or two-dice (e.g. 2d6) rolls.

3) Unified task-systems. Why? I like to play with minimal (if any) page-flipping during the game, so if most game-mechanics are handled in the same simple way I can learn them by heart and then GM without referring to the book. A unified task-system is also quite easy to improvise with - just pick a skill (or ability or both) and a difficulty level and you can resolve most "mechanical" situations on the fly with a single roll.

4) Simple, skill-based systems with a few broad skills. Why? Because this allows easy character generation while keeping things flexible, keeps the character-sheet tidy, and focuses on character mechanics that get frequent use in actual play. As a GM, it also allows me to quickly improvise task-rolls on the fly while letting most characters a chance to shine. This also gives the players good chances to improvise, as most characters have broadly-defined areas of professional knowledge rather than narrow specialties.

5) Fast and lethal combat. Why? I prefer action, not grind, and besides the real fun in RPG combat is action, tactics and "special effects" rather than taking out every mook one scratch at a time. I also like combat feeling realistic and dangerous (only feeling realistic - not actually over-detailed in its realism), and most weapons should be able to cause serious damage to people.

I guess that both Classic and Mongoose Traveller fit my tastes pretty well. My main problems with CT are the lack of a unified task system and the lack of vehicle rules; my main problems with MGT are the slightly too high (for my taste) number of skills and the damage mechanics. But in both cases I can live with these problems and enjoy these rules.

So, how do you like your RPG game-systems?

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 10, 2009 10:49 am 
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Let me see ..

1) Easy to adapt rules. I want to be able to make up a rule on the spot without breaking the game. That's why i like percentage systems, it's easier to think in those terms.

2) Linear dice systems, 1d20 or 1d100. Like i said, bell curves confuse me under pressure, and a referee is always under pressure.

3) I don't so much like task systems as a single, unifying and underlying concept. Like percentages.

4) Simple, skill-based systems with a few broad skills. I go with that.

5) Lethal combat, but I'm not too worried about fast - because i never run games with lots of combatants. I used to think RQ was slow, but then I realised it was only because I was running hordes of broo ...

That means only one thing, and has done for (eek) 25+ years. Basic Rleplaying! :mrgreen:

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 10, 2009 4:05 pm 
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I love D&D 4e. I don't play or even look at anything else anymore. As far as I'm concerned the mechanics for that are pretty much perfect, as is the presentation.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 10, 2009 5:29 pm 
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Rules-lite, levels of complexity can always be tacked on later. I view my RPGs an exercise in collaborative storytelling. True, the Referee as the author/playwright has many more devices and contrivances than the average player but once the groove is established, it leads to harmony. Essentially, I look poor upon rules that inhibit play and favorably upon sourcebooks that help me describe something not in the everyday experience of most players. Mood takes precedence over all else...hence my use of multimedia pyrotechnics.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 10:19 am 
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Using % dice makes sense to me; I like the overall idea of BRP, but I absolutely *hate* roll under dice mechanics. I'm also not a fan of using multiple funny shaped dice either; some very, very bad past experiences of D&D mean I am multi-polyhedral-averse, and I despise the "handsful of dice" mechanic. I'd much rather use one type of dice (be it d6, d10, d20, d100/%) and use that die/dice for everything.

So unless there is a BRP OGL/SRD somewhere in which the core mechanic can be turned upside down I can't use it.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 2:06 pm 
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John wrote:
[...] some very, very bad past experiences of D&D mean I am multi-polyhedral-averse.

Hey, don't you know some therapists? I'm sure that's fixable! :lol:

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 12, 2009 11:49 am 
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D&D4 with a group that likes it should cure that.

Doesn't BRP use polys for damage?


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 12, 2009 2:23 pm 
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Gallowglacht wrote:
Doesn't BRP use polys for damage?

Mainly that, and some creature stats, IIRC (haven't played a fantasy game in a long while). I love my large bag of polyhedral dice. Image

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 12, 2009 3:56 pm 
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I like simple, but realistic.

I have played BRP (and I like it) but I also think roll under is not intuitive.

Traveller's 2D mechanic is simple enough and after 30 years, the bell curve is memorized, so I can make things up pretty quickly (the MGT standard task system helps too).

I like simple skills, but figuring out what should be it's own skill has always been tricky. As an Engineer, I know that Mechanical and Electronics Engineering are VERY different and really don't have a lot of crossover. But in most games, they are combined into one skill. I have learned to live with that.

I DO like Mongooses Specialties for Traveller. I think that is a nice compromise between too much specialty and too much generalization. I wish they had taken it a step further and combined a few more skills into Specialties. For a simple game, you can just use the main skill and not bother with specialties; but they are there if you need them.

Mega Traveller used Cascade skills, and that is similar, but I like the mechanics of the MGT version better.

I worked on a game that never got published and it used D10 only. It was actually quite elegent.

As long as the mechanics make sense and are easy to pick up and use, I can live with just about any of them.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 12, 2009 7:47 pm 
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I like rules light-ish, intuitive systems which, increasingly, include some form of drama/fate/editing points under the player's control.


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