BrikWaRPG, Quantumsurfer Edition

Supplement ideas, house rules, homemade stat cards, homebrew weapon types, and other cool variations

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BrikWaRPG, Quantumsurfer Edition

Post by Quantumsurfer » Sun Dec 28, 2014 3:07 pm

I've been working on this for awhile now, on and off, and finally began writing it a couple of months ago. Primarily inspired by BrickSyd's superb rpg playtest, my love for BrikWars, and being an avid roleplayer myself for many years, I decided I wanted to design and contribute my own BWRPG. As a side benefit, I would also have something to use when I ran my For Great Justice spinoff, PS8. In this latter case, though, I was totally going to seek permission to use BrickSyd's system. He said that he was interested in seeing what I'd come up with and gave me some good ideas, so I chalked that up as another reason to go ahead and get it done. Further encouragement came from my friends in the chat, so thanks for that as well.

Now, the version I wrote is absurdly long. Which is natural given the time I spent on it and probably pretty expected by anyone who's read my work given my silly propensity for verbosity. Still, no apologies on that front. I perfectly understand if it is tl;dr, so as a gesture of goodwill, I included QuikWaRPG rules at the very end of the document that are only 2 pages long (with half a page being a modified stat card standing in as a QWRPG Character Sheet).

I do apologize a little, however, if it is stilted, awkward, or disjointed. It's a first draft, so some of that is a little understandable but some of that won't change in future revisions either. The first bit before the table of contents is copied over and modified from other similar documents I've written. I think it all fits well enough. I felt like including it made me seem like I was taking myself WAY too seriously (as if the length of the document hadn't done that already), but please let me stress that I felt it was necessary for me to be respectful to my inspirations and to Mike and his game. As for the rest, I'm sure I can clean up the disjointedness and any awkward phrasing with future revisions (if I can ever be arsed to make any). Also, I didn't realize how difficult it would be to write a supplement to a game I didn't create in the first place. It's not for lack of familiarity. I just wasn't sure what to reiterate and where, how to cite the source material appropriately, and just generally how to line it up so that it flowed naturally from BW. I definitely feel like I wrote too much in this regard and some of that could stand to get the axe if I can suss it out. I'm afraid the tone will likely remain the same, however. Sadly, I do not possess the comedic brilliance of Rayhawk writing. I'm super envious.

Anyway, without further ado (god, shut up already, Quantum), I present:

BrikWaRPG, Quantumsurfer Edition

Please let me know what you think of it. I can already see several balance issues. In particular and for example, I'm worried that the Skill to Armor ratio is off somehow, with Skill being capped and Armor not. I tried to mitigate that in several ways, as I'm sure you'll see. Don't know if it balances, though. Hopefully PS8 will serve as a good playtesting ground.

Also, I made an expanded character sheet (you wouldn't have to use the whole thing if you didn't need to but I tried to cover all my bases), which may or may not be a little fuzzy having been shoved into the initial document. Here are the individual pages as image files:

Character Sheet, Page 1
Character Sheet, Page 2
Character Sheet, Page 3
Character Sheet, Page 4
Character Sheet, Page 5
QuikWaRPG Character Sheet

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Re: BrikWaRPG, Quantumsurfer Edition

Post by devincp » Sun Jan 11, 2015 2:14 am

I really like the StoryBuilder element to this rules set. It is of course a bit long winded but then it is not as large a rule book as many other RPGs out there. Would love to see you play test and get in on that game whenever it happens. Just a couple of questions to start:

6. How many scenes would the characters from tower of justice gone through during that whole campaign?

7. I will come up with more questions as I reread the rules you have shared.
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Re: BrikWaRPG, Quantumsurfer Edition

Post by Quantumsurfer » Sun Jan 11, 2015 6:34 am

It is long winded. So much so that I was afraid no one would ever comment on it. I've gotten a couple of positive-ish responses in chat, though. So between that and this, I'm satisfied. I'm glad you seem to like it.

I haven't made up the thread for the first game I intend to use it in but the prologue to that game is here. So your number six question is actually super relevant. I'm going to keep it simple and just say 22, which was the number of rounds in ToJ. All the starting characters are going to be able to begin with up to 22 Scenes, at the default of 10 Scenes per Level Up (for a total of 2 Level Ups to start).
devincp wrote:I will come up with more questions as I reread the rules you have shared.
Please do. Having written games and supplements before, I'm fully aware that I very probably missed several important things or made decisions that could definitely be improved upon.

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Re: BrikWaRPG, Quantumsurfer Edition

Post by Zupponn » Mon Jan 12, 2015 12:24 am

No offense, but 47 pages is way too long for me to even bother reading. My favorite thing about my BrikwaRPG system was its simplicity.
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Re: BrikWaRPG, Quantumsurfer Edition

Post by Quantumsurfer » Mon Jan 12, 2015 1:27 am

No offense taken. I really liked that too. I do have a page in the half in the back for QuikWaRPG as a nod to that.

About half of the thing is a list of Abilities. They take up a lot of real estate. Players who play in my rpgs won't be expected to read full in. I'll give the gist, help construct, and handle the mechanics. So please don't let that dissuade you from joining any of the games I run using it.

Still, the option is there for players who want it.

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Re: BrikWaRPG, Quantumsurfer Edition

Post by stubby » Mon Jan 12, 2015 11:28 am

My main comment is that this reads real heavy on detailed particulars and light on guiding principles. The rulebook text doesn't give me a clear idea of a unifying conceptual framework or design aesthetic to put all of the examples in context. It makes it tricky to make any overall comments or critique; I can't tell if any given section is hitting the mark because I can't quite tell what the mark is.

Is the point of the game to tell dramatic stories? To create new Kanon? To set off crazy events? Even if it's not stated explicitly in the text, there should be some common goal that lets you make choices about "this rule furthers the goal, this rule needs redirection to align with the goal better, this rule is irrelevant to the goal and is getting cut."

Overall though, seems like a lot of people are commenting about the length, and I tend to agree - not because 47 pages is too long for a rulebook, but because 47 pages is too long for 20 pages' worth of material. It's normal to overwrite everything when you're getting all the details worked out, but at some point you'll have to put on the editor hat and pare that way down. (For further examples of rulebooks with this problem, see all of the second half of BW2010.)

To that end, I'd suggest putting some energy into breaking up the opaque walls of text. Break the big sprawling paragraphs into multiple shorter, single-topic focused ones, put key concept introductions in bold, maybe add some punchy callouts.
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Re: BrikWaRPG, Quantumsurfer Edition

Post by devincp » Mon Jan 12, 2015 11:42 am

Stubby wrote:
My main comment is that this reads real heavy on detailed particulars and light on guiding principles. The rulebook text doesn't give me a clear idea of a unifying conceptual framework or design aesthetic to put all of the examples in context. It makes it tricky to make any overall comments or critique; I can't tell if any given section is hitting the mark because I can't quite tell what the mark is.
This is exactly what I could not put into words the first time that I read through the rule book. so thank you Stubby for putting it into words for me.

I really like most of the concepts in here especially the parts about character building and scenes verses interludes. but I was often not clear on exactly how each of the pieces fit together sometimes. eventually there will pictures or short examples to help explain certain rules.

As far as the length goes once i realized that the last 20 pages were just abilities that your choose from and only really need to skim over and then reference it made reading the rules much less daunting.
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Re: BrikWaRPG, Quantumsurfer Edition

Post by Quantumsurfer » Mon Jan 12, 2015 9:28 pm

Fantastic, thank you very much.

I had initially worried that I went way overboard with the Abilities. As I wrote them, I felt a power creep coming on, as well as a rise in specificity. The latter is fine(ish) for the Abilities mechanical concept but not so hot for the aim of simplicity inherent in the parent concept. I am glad that I kept with the idea of placing the Ability list in an Appendix, for referential use. Originally, I was going to keep them in text. I can see now, even more, how that would've been a bad idea and would have added to the confusion. In any case, I can definitely cut a few of them out. They're example powers anyway and the system is intended to allow for versatility in character creation.

I can also see how I need to edit some walls of text down. I tried to explain everything in words and you're right...looking back through it, it does seem unnecessary in spots. I did originally consider putting a face on it. That introductory bit of setting based narrative you often find in RPG books that usually wraps up with something to the effect of "YOU are that adventurer!" In this case, it would provide at least a starting point (if not a strong guiding light) for the question "why do I want to play the game in this way?" Reading back through, I can see a few areas where I wandered off from the central idea.

I'll give it some thought and start in on a second version when I've got some time and energy. Thanks again for your thoughts, Devin, Zupponn, Stubby. Please let me know if you have any more.

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Re: BrikWaRPG, Quantumsurfer Edition

Post by RedRover » Sat Sep 26, 2015 9:43 pm

I'm interested in this and would love to see it happen / participate

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Re: BrikWaRPG, Quantumsurfer Edition

Post by Quantumsurfer » Sat Sep 26, 2015 10:59 pm

Thanks, Red. What will probably happen is (whenever I get off my arse and do the write up for the first draft and BrickSyd and I can get back together) Syd and I will publish our BWRPG Collaboration Edition. DevinCP was helping out but he vanished awhile ago and we've gotten some good suggestions from other users. The aim with the CE is to take the best of his RPG and mine, mix it up with some other neat ideas, and then simplify into something fun and digestible. Hopefully, the end result will cater both to the players who have expressed a wish for a BWRPG that is a bit richer and more sustainable and also to the players who want something quick and easy. So, as I'm working on that, I probably won't create a second version of QE. The combined effort is already, in theory anyway, turning out to be way better.

In any case, once it's published, I intend to use it for Escape from Prison System Eight. And I welcome any interest. Syd might have an interest in using it for his excellent forum rpg. I'm not sure if he's going to switch mechanical gears midway though. You'd have to ask him. Whatever the case, if it works well, it'll be my standard for going forward with forum or chat rpgs.

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Re: BrikWaRPG, Quantumsurfer Edition

Post by runnybabbit223 » Sun Sep 27, 2015 7:43 am

RedRover wrote:I'm interested in this and would love to see it happen / participate
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