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RuneQuest Essentials
par Christopher T. [Acheteur vérifié] Date Ajoutée: 06/23/2015 22:50:50
I bought the hardback full book and picked this up later for my players to put on their tablets during play (since it's PWYW). There's only one possible rating for RQ6 and that's at the very top. While the huge book is a kitchen sink full of stuff, much of it is the world building and non-essential things to getting in and playing, this has just what you need. In terms of a free product to get you playing, Essentials is an excellent start and you could probably play RQ for years without needing the main book and looking at the bestiary, a lot of the old Glorantha stuff as well.

System-wise there are lots of things I like, and two things I really like about RQ6. First is the detailed and fast combat which gives players the opportunity to make very interesting choices while still resolving quickly. There's a lot to it, but essentially you roll the dice and see what happens and (except for magic) there's not a ton of stuff on people's sheets to distract them from the story. Note that the combat has been described as 'deadly' but what that means is it can resolve quickly with someone defeated. The way the system works is that not all (or even any) fights need to end in death or dismemberment depending on your style of game. The second thing is that, except for the magic systems, the rest of the game is quite simple to run and adjudicate all sorts of different checks and tasks and all that other stuff. Character creation can take a bit longer than your OSR games or Numenera, but probably on par with 5E or 13th Age in terms of time spent creating characters.

The two magic systems, Folk Magic and Theism, are ones you will use the most as players. If there was one omission for me here as a GM it would be Sorcery because that's what the bad guys use!

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Luther Arkwright: Roleplaying Across the Parallels
par Anthony B. [Acheteur vérifié] Date Ajoutée: 06/09/2015 03:02:23
Luther Arkwright: Roleplaying Across the Parallels, is a campaign setting guide and expansion for RuneQuest 6th Edition. RuneQuest by the Design Mechanism is one of the finest toolkits for fantasy campaign design that I have ever had the pleasure to read and use. Focused on a bronze age with a variety of magical and mystical elements, a creative GM can turn it to emulate virtually anything they might want from primitive levels of technology on up to the personal use of steel.

With Luther Arkwright in hand, the GM's creative reach has now been expanded across time and genre to reach to star-faring cultures from the birth of the Industrial Age, taking on whatever aspects of SF and Fantasy you might like along the way.

As inspiration, guide, template, and exciting setting in its own right, the dimensions of Bryan Talbot's graphic novels showing the exploits of the titular character and his fellow agents against the machinations of the Disruptors across infinite parallels of existence are presented in spell-binding and complete detail.

If you are looking for a compelling and challenging setting to use as is, or looking for a toolkit for invention, SF, psychic powers, dimensional travel, modern or futuristic combat, or some mixture of them all this book may be the answer.

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Mythic Britain Preview: Caves of the Circind
par Darren P. [Acheteur vérifié] Date Ajoutée: 06/08/2015 12:16:54
Have not played it yet, but it looks classy and extremely well thought out. Reminiscent of the excellent novels by Gillian Bradshaw with. Hawk of may (the central character is the hero of this supplement). Excellent.

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RuneQuest Essentials
par Darren P. [Acheteur vérifié] Date Ajoutée: 06/08/2015 12:12:38
After I got this I felt a bit guilty that I didn't pay more. Hi standard and well thought out. Can be easy go get lost when choosing and adding percentiles to skills. Character sheet would do with the little symbols they use on d and d sheets to show what you have picked. Beautiful cover and a lot of value for a pay what you want product.

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RuneQuest Essentials
par Michael J. [Acheteur vérifié] Date Ajoutée: 05/19/2015 20:23:52
I really did like Runequest when it first came out. Unfortunately they took a good clean design, and added rules for everything. Then took out the original setting for a generic fantasy. And added yet more rules. This edition seems to have reverted to the same era as the original.

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RuneQuest 6th Edition
par Douglas N. [Acheteur vérifié] Date Ajoutée: 05/03/2015 10:40:47
I picked this up after getting the Essentials version. It's not often that I can pick up a free version that fits the bill for 3 campaigns I had in my head, and then decide that I need the full version at $25 (pdf)

RQ6 is a great system. RQ is old, and the last time I played it was more than 20 years ago. Honestly, it felt like they decided to do 20 years of patch revisions to make the system better, not new. That I really appreciate. That means most all of the mechanics are fully baked, and things have been thought out. The book has nice sidebars talking about some of them.

Despite it's apparent complexity, it's actually a relatively simple system. Combat is nuanced, surprisingly fast, surprisingly deadly, and interesting, and real choices have to be made with weapons - damage, reach, defensiveness, unique abilities.

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Monster Island
par Steve P. [Acheteur vérifié] Date Ajoutée: 03/06/2015 17:01:05
This is excellent. Well written and interesting. Useable in many different ways...as a monster manual, an adventure site and a fantastic source of inspiration for your games, even if you don't use the Runequest system. For intelligent, thought provoking roleplaying...This is how it should be done. Thanks.

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Mythic Britain Preview: Caves of the Circind
par Will R. [Acheteur vérifié] Date Ajoutée: 09/26/2014 15:27:51
As a fan of both RuneQuest 6 and Bernard Cornwell's Warlord Trilogy, Mythic Britain is everything I could want out of a game and this is my first taste of it.

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RuneQuest Firearms
par Te B. [Acheteur vérifié] Date Ajoutée: 04/25/2014 16:16:23
Cleverly done. RQ has been in need of such a writeup for some time. Easy to read, easy to understand.

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Monster Island
par Brian P. [Acheteur vérifié] Date Ajoutée: 03/08/2014 19:09:21
I thought the new edition of Runequest was fantastic, but if it did have a flaw, it's that it was entirely a toolkit with no setting included other than the Meeros sidebars designed to explain the various systems of the game. Well, Monster Island is entirely a setting book, and it more than lives up to the high expectations Runequest set.

The capsule description can be pretty obviously drawn from the book's title. The setting is a lot like King Kong's Skull Island, being a tangled, overgrown volcanic jungle island crawling with dinosaurs and weird monsters, but also draws a lot from Clark Ashton Smith's Hyperborean stories. The island used to be part of a larger continent and the mountain peaks were the sacred Mount Yoormiphazreth where the gods dwelt, until Man Grew Proud, the gods descended to earth for a cage match, the mountain blew up, and everything went to hell, destroying the ancient sorcerous civilization that built the giant causeways that crisscross the island and the Smoking Mirror portals to other worlds that they used to bring in creatures for their amusement or for magical experiments.

The Smoking Mirrors are an especially nice touch, because it provides a great rationale for why the island is crawling will all kinds of incredibly and improbably dangerous flora and fauna that aren't related in any way to each other. Explorers can conceivably find just about anything in the jungles or mountain peaks or seas, and to that end, Monster Island has almost 100 pages of animals, plants, spirits, and weird things to fill out the island. A lot of them are drawn from East Asian or Oceanic mythology, like the Aswang, Manananggal, Nanaue, Rokurokubi, and Tikbalang, but there's plenty of other creatures in there too. The Trifronds, or the allosaurs, with a note that the natives call them "gwangi," or the vorslurp, plus dozens and dozens of others. Even if you aren't interested at all in a new setting, the book is absolutely worth the price for the monsters alone.

There's also a brief section about what sword and sorcery is--focus on human characters with the non-humans being definitely inhuman, the odd and sinister nature of magic, mostly human opponents and occasional weird monsters instead of whole other species--and how to run a sandbox setting, include random encounter charts suited for Monster Island. There's also tweaks to the way Magic Points are recovered such that most of them either come from specific places of power or from the sacrifice of living creatures.

The remainder of the book is about the three cultures of the island--the lizardmen savages, the serpentmen High Folk, and the human colonists.

The lizardmen are divided into stone-age tribes named after their gods--who are also kaiju--with names like the Ghidori, the Gamari, the Gyaosi, or the Kumongi. The tribes live in particular territories, which they don't leave because their tribal shamans perform the rituals that keep the gods asleep beneath the earth to prevent another battle royale between them. Instead, they engage in ritualized warfare to keep their numbers low, but don't wipe each other out because that would wake one of the sleeping gods. Also, they tattoo their deeds on their skins, pass messages through the jungle with giant drum relays, and have a strict division of labor where the young fight or hunt and anyone who lives long enough becomes a shaman.

The High Folk are divided into three cities which spend a lot of their time scheming against each other, but they never manage to gain a hand up over each other because they're also too busy scheming against the colonists and the savages to actually succeed. Also, they're too busy stabbing each other in the back and hoarding sorcerous knowledge for themselves to really actually get much done. Certainly not enough to replicate the great feats of the past.

The humans live in the ruins of one city on the far end of the island. The basic assumption is that it's a trading colony with people from many different lands, but nothing is ever detailed so it's equally possible for them to be shipwrecked sailors or castaways who came through the Smoking Mirrors and banded together for survival. The colony is ruled by a governor, but a lot of the power is held by the various cults of different gods brought from overseas. The gods are pretty explicitly hideous Lovecraftian (well, actually Clark-Ashtonian) entities, and include Thasaidon, Atlach-Nacha, Tsathoggua, and Ubbo-Sathla.

This is a really good example of how to use the Runequest rules to create cultures and implement the magic rules. The humans have Theism, the High Folk have Sorcery--with changed spell names to fit the setting. Hide Life becomes Ensconce Vitality, Regenerate becomes Meliorate Maltreatment, Smother becomes Antagonistic Asphyxiation, and so on--and the savages have Animism.

There's also a list of various locations around the islands, like the ancient causeways walked by the ghosts of old warriors, a city build on the underside of a giant carved lizard head, the tomb of a pre-cataclysmic sorcerer, a nest of birdmen from beyond the Smoking Mirrors who worship the ancient power armor their ancestors wore when they first came through, an abandoned mine filled with radioactive gold, a tower with a bound storm demon that lashes the eastern coast of the island with storms, and so on. They're great, especially the bird men with power armor. I admit, I'm a sucker for science fantasy, and lost high-technology is a good sword and sorcery trope.

The whole book drips with ideas, and even if you don't like the actual setting, you'll find plenty in here to use for inspiration. The locations and the monsters alone make it worth reading. After Runequest and this, I'm pretty much in the camp of buying anything Design Mechanism puts out sight unseen.

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RuneQuest 6th Edition
par Brian P. [Acheteur vérifié] Date Ajoutée: 12/02/2013 00:00:00
Like most early RPGs, Runequest was originally developed because someone was unhappy with parts of D&D. Originally it was pretty closely tied to Glorantha, but this edition has decoupled itself and is a more generic fantasy system, though a lot of Glorantha's setting assumptions still carry forth into the end product.

In contrast to most fantasy RPGs, which take place in a kind of nebulous Renn Faire-esque medieval/early Renaissance period, Runequest is designed to evoke more a Bronze Age or early Iron Age feel (though it doesn't have to, as the free firearms rules available indicate), and all the examples of rules or concepts in the text are illustrated using a Greek city-state expy called Meeros.

I actually really liked the stories about Meeros and the world around it, and I found it far more interesting than most examples of game fiction usually are. Cynically, rulebooks tend to be fanfic followed by stereo instructions--that was why I found Alternity so hard to read--but Runequest actually manages to be quite readable, even though it's very long and fairly dense. Maybe it's how the examples are sidebars next to the text instead of interrupting the text itself, or maybe it's just that I'm happy for a change to hoplites in formation instead of medieval knights. Regardless, I'd buy a Meeros setting book if they ever published one.

The system is percentile, and is pretty easy to summarize: skills are rated as percentages, roll under the percentage to succeed, on opposed rolls higher numbers are better. If you've ever seen Call Of Cthulhu or Basic Roleplaying, then you already know how it works, and there aren't too many tricks here. It's very much a "roll the dice and it fades into the background" type of system. One mechanic to deal with skills above 100 that I like is that the amount above 100 is subtracted from everyone else opposing the character in contests, so there's still a reason to raise skills when they hit 100 beyond the small increase in the critical threshold.

The book is mostly a toolkit, and there's heavy emphasis throughout on including the elements that fit the individual GM's world. This is most evident in the magic chapters (about which more later), but shows up earlier as well. Character creation is filled with options, advice on how to determine where the characters come from, how to tailor the available professions to the setting of the game, how to integrate social classes and the influence of culture, and so on. The skill list is somewhat fiddly, but it avoids the problem most games with fiddly skill lists seem to have by giving the characters about ~20 skills to cover the normal things the average person can do--try to persuade people, run, climb, swim, resist physical or mental assault, and so on.

Also, boating. I wouldn't think that's an innate ability, but maybe I'm an outlier? Anyway, characters are rounded out with "Professional Skills" based on their jobs, upbringing, and any organizations they're a part of.

In one really neat change from the way most RPGs deal with combat skills, Runequest doesn't have separate skills for various weapons. Instead, they have "combat styles" that draw several weapons designed to be used together and trained with together under the same skill. These are designed to be campaign-specific and GM-created, though there are some examples given. Anathaym, the character that illustrates most of the Meeros examples, has the Meerish Infantry combat style that provides training in spear, shield, and shortsword. She also learned Meerish Slinger during her girlhood running around the hills outside the city. Each combat style also has a special trait associated with it. The first lets her lock shields to form a shield wall, and the second lets her sling while on the run. There's a full list of traits provided. All in all, it's a great way to deal with fighting that prevents a proliferation with weapon skills while providing some useful context to how each character learned to fight.

Combat itself is a gritty, brutal affair. A good hit to a character will probably cripple or kill them outright if they aren't wearing any armor, combat is typically over in three turns or less, and much emphasis is based on footwork, flanking, ganging up on your opponents, active defense, and other tactical combat measures. Though movement is mostly abstracted, there is an option to make it more tactical at the end of the book, as well as GM advice for how to pace and set up combat so that the deadliness and long healing times don't cripple the game when they come up. Finally, there's a maneuver system, including disarming, tripping, grappling, flanking, getting inside an opponent's spear range (or keeping them on the outside of your own spear range) and so on, all of which are chosen after the dice are rolled, so it prevents the usual problem where players have to choose between doing damage and doing something cool.

The whole section was like catnip for me--I love gritty, grinding, brutal combat in TTRPGs, and Runequest is that with the maneuvers section on top of that base to make sure combat stays interesting. The combat rules made me immediately want to run a combat-focused game, which almost never happens. Even though too many combats might lead to players losing limbs and accumulating masses of tissue. Then again, I love WFRP, which has similar mechanics. Maybe it helps that I'm usually running the games instead of playing?

The section on magic is the longest single section in the book, but mostly because of the toolbox approach. In addition to a basic chapter on magic, giving GM advice on how to integrate it in the game and determine the power level and prevelance of magic, there are individual chapters for Folk Magic, which is low-power common effects like starting fires, cleaning utensils, making plows or swords sharper, creating light, and so on; Animism, involving making contracts with spirits and getting them to perform effects for you; Mysticism, which is new to this edition of Runequest and covers concepts like supernatural martial arts and asceticism; Sorcery, the classic sword and sorcery magic learned from tomes or demons or ancient organizations; and Theism, which is probably the highest-powered magic since the power comes directly from a spirit or deity, but has a limited ability for the caster to replenish their magical energy.

This takes up a lot of space in the book, but it's all designed to pull whatever elements are necessary to properly create the world. This is one place where the influence of Glorantha shows through pretty strongly, because talk about the runes and their influence is woven throughout the text. There's advice on how to determine a magical school's repertoire based on their runic influence, or how the runes influence spells, and also how to ignore the runes completely if that works better with the setting.

The magic is mostly template-based. For example, there's a "Teleport" spell under Sorcery, but the examples given indicate how to tweak the spells for setting context--one example is a group of air wizards who cannot teleport unless they're not in contact with the earth, and another is the secret of shadowmancers who can flit from one patch of darkness to another.

I especially like how Theism has a spell specifically for appeasing wrathful deities. Not too many fantasy worlds include the idea of making sacrifices to the storm god to prevent lightning strikes, or to the plague god to prevent epidemics. Usually worshippers of the plague god are sociopaths, but that's not really how historical religion worked.

After that, there's an entire chapter about cults and brotherhoods, and a lot of emphasis is placed on the social connections the characters form with other individuals and with other members of their culture. As before, there's a lot of examples of different generic organizations that can be tweaked to fit the setting.

There's the usual bestiary, some parts of which are suitable for PCs if it fits the setting. The usual elves, dwarves, and halflings--with a note about how their stats can be used for, say, humanoid ducks--are there, but there are also centaurs, hawkmen, panthermen, and lizardmen. The monsters are your standard fantasy mixture with a bit of a mythic Greek twist, featuring cyclopes, gorgons (snake-women, not the D&D rockbulls), harpies, and so on, and there's also spirits to populate the world and interact with Animists.

If I can digress for a moment, the inclusion of Animism and the focus on spirits is something I really like. A lot of fantasy worlds, especially those derived or heavily-influenced by Dungeons and Dragons, will have a pantheon of deities, maybe the ghosts of the dead and other spectral entities, but basically nothing in between. Real-world cultures, especially in the Bronze Age that Runequest takes as the inspiration, tended to have a variety of local deities, nature spirits, tutelary deities, ancestral spirits, and other inhabitants of the unseen world. I always think that's a huge blind spot in most fantasy worlds, and I love that it's explicitly a part of the world here.

On another note, I'd heard a story that part of the inspiration for Games Workshop coming up with the Warhammer world, and specifically with Chaos and the Beastmen it creates, was that it used to produce Glorantha miniatures but lost the license and needed to do something with the Broo miniatures that it had. After seeing the stats for the Chaos Hybrid (Runequest's version of Broo) and the mutating influence of Chaos in the game, that story sounds pretty credible to me.

The book ends with a bunch of GM advice. More on how to tailor cults, how to deal with combat in a system where a single hit can take a combatant out of the fight or even be fatal, how to adjust for slow healing times, a way to adapt the rules for crafting to social situations, ways to structure investigative games so resolving the mystery or discovering the secret doesn't all come down to a single die roll, and how to adapt the structure of magic to fit the setting. It's pretty general, but it wraps up the toolkit approach pretty nicely.

Runequest is quite long, but in being long it's extremely comprehensive, and the toolkit approach means that you don't need to use the entire book if you don't want to. It'd be entirely reasonable to ignore almost all the creatures in the bestiary and all of the magic and run a purely historical game set in the eastern Mediterranean Bronze Age, where the PCs are members of a Mycenaean trading group, or members of Sargon of Akkad's army. Nearly half the book would be useless at that point, but it's certainly possible.

All-in-all, it's fantastic. You could get years or decades of gaming from just this book, and I'm really excited to try to use it. Two thumbs up: d(^_^)b

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RuneQuest 6th Edition
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Monster Island
par John-Matthew D. [Acheteur vérifié] Date Ajoutée: 07/26/2013 15:10:37
I was very excited about this book, as I love bestiaries. There are many reasons for this: they are filled with new creatures, new takes on old creatures, they help fill out a setting’s feel, and usually spark my imagination with many adventure ideas. Some of my favorite ones have actually changed the course of my planned game, as they have presented a better idea or foe than I originally thought of (I am thinking of you Anima: Those Who Walked Amongst Us).

So when Design Mechanism sent me three PDFs (including Monster Island) reading this one, reading this first was a no brainer. Man was I surprised. This is not a bestiary, at least not in the traditional sense. The RuneQuest team presented a complete adventure setting in this book. And after I got through it, I feel they made a great call.

I enjoyed Monster Island. Perhaps more than I would have enjoyed a straight bestiary. It took me a while to get to this thought, as I was expecting three hundred pages of monsters and had certain expectations going in. But, it is a great example on how to apply RQ6 to a setting idea; what level of detail I would need to flesh out where, and where the mechanics really need to interact with the setting.

The book is a great buy even just as a bestiary, but you get so much more than that.

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Glorantha: The Second Age
par Phillip B. [Acheteur vérifié] Date Ajoutée: 03/23/2013 10:42:55
This ia an essential supplement for anyone planning on running a second age campaign although I was annoyed to discover that it was essentially a direct duplication of the Glorantha Second Age core rules under a different name which made it a bit redundant for me, although for the special purchase price I can't get too upset. That said it is well produced and full of detail on the different factions of the age

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RuneQuest 6th Edition
par Malcolm M. [Acheteur vérifié] Date Ajoutée: 02/19/2013 08:45:49
Almost certainly the best-written, best-organized core rpg rulebook I've seen in 20+ years of gaming.

While not a lot of support material currently exists for RQ6 -- as of this writing -- the transparent nature of the underlying Basic Roleplaying (BRP) game system means that materials from the Mongoose Runequest II line (e.g. the Monster Coliseum monster book), and even the Basic Roleplaying line (e.g. Classic Fantasy), can be adapted into RQ6 with a minimum of heavy lifting by the Gamemaster.

If you've ever wanted to give RuneQuest a try, start with this edition.

An excellent product in many, many ways. Full marks from me.

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Pavis Rises
par Pepito F. [Acheteur vérifié] Date Ajoutée: 10/28/2012 11:44:39
En general, este libro está bien, incluye información para dirigir una campaña en la ciudad de Pavis en la Segunda Edad y ofrece ideas para aventuras, enemigos y tramas diversas. Además, incluye 5 escenarios, alguno de ellos con ideas buenas.

Por el lado negativo, si el máster ya conoce Pavis a través de los suplementos que hay ambientados en la Tercera Edad, este libro puede ser decepcionante, porque aporta poco nuevo. Además, hay demasiado espacio en blanco en el libro, que podría haverse aprovechado mejor incluyendo más PNJs, por ejemplo. Algunos detalles de los escenarios dejan mucho que desear.

Para una reseña más extensa, ver:

http://frikoteca.blogspot.com.es/2011/03/resena-de-pavis-
-rises_22.html

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