02 June 2012

Design Mechanism Seminar, 27 May

Your chronicler with the poster of the panel.
The Sunday panel of the Eternal Convention was dedicated to RuneQuest 6, the latest incarnation of the classic "D100" role-playing game (and sytem); the speakers were Loz and Pete of MRQII fame, who started their own company to write, publish, and sell RuneQuest 6. Loz and Pete were unable to make it to the con this year, so they participated through a G+ hangout. It worked out pretty well despite the unreliable connection; Nick Brooke acted as the local speaker, often 'translating' questions from the audience to Loz and Pete who couldn't always hear them well.

First of all, Pittel (Andreas Pittelkow, one of the organisers of the Eternal Con) had received extended preview printouts from Loz and had prepared a nice board with all the sheet laid out for us conventiongoers to read before the panel actually started. This enabled us to prepare our questions for Loz and Pete. Mysticism, the new magic system featured by RuneQuest 6 on top of the regular ones, obviously attracted special attention.

Now on with what I have been able to transcribe from the seminar.

First, the name. After all the abbreviations for the various editions of RuneQuest, RuneQuest 6 will simply be called 'RuneQuest'.
The Design Mechanism holds exclusive rights to the 'RuneQuest' name for 5 years.

The upcoming book— it will be as complete as possible in terms of rules, magic, creatures, and GM advice. Expect a softcover book with a total of 456 pages. A hardcover book is not in the works, except maybe as a future collector's item.

Amongst the novelties:
  • In terms of magic systems, it will feature the usual RQ magic systems plus mysticism.
  • Passions: each character starts with three passions (see the preview)
Expect a sword and sorcery feeling in the way the rules are presented, e.g., in the character examples in the side bars.

Of course, the new RQ is generic and not tied to Glorantha any longer — although the various magic systems can obviously be used to replicate Glorantha. Sorcery has been streamlined and should be more easily usable than in RQ3. Combat has an added level of complexity compared to RQ3; however, the way combat works, it should be over il less time than it used to mostly because you don't want to fight to death: you would either surrender or flee.

(The following stems from questions from the audience)
Opposed skill resolution: under your skill but as high as possible (so-called 'blackjack' mechanism).

Mysticism is Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and jedi knights, but it will be magic point-hungry. Possibly similar to the super powers section in the BGB.

Compatibility with other D100 games: high, not only with former RQ versions, but also with D100-based games in general.

In the works/future plans:
  • Monster Island, by Pete: trying to capture the feeling of King Kong and sword and sorcery, with oodles of monsters, much in the style of Griffin Island.
  • Book of Quests, by Loz: loosely related sword and sorcery scenarios.
  • Mythic Greece
  • Mythic Britain
  • Mythic Constantinople
  • Mythic Mesopotamia
  • Glorantha will be supported, even though it's not yet a priority. Possibly, the first book will be Adventures in Glorantha, with advice as to how to use the rules in Third Age Glorantha; the book might also contain RQ statistics for already-published HQ books, e.g., Pavis.
  • There is also a licence in the pipe. Unfortunately nothing further can be revealed.
  • Also expect a free online downloadable magazine à la Signs & Portents.

The price of RuneQuest 6 will be approximately 48 euros. It should be available in July. You will soon be able to pre-order a hard copy directly from the Design Mechanism web-site. Pre-ordering it from the Design Mechanism web-site should entail a discount and/or the free PDF, and it is a nice way to support Loz & Pete.

Foreword by Steve Perrin. Only fitting. Shame on Mongoose for not having mentioned Steve in the MRQ books!


  1. +1 sur Perrin.

    Cela m'avait aussi choqué que Mongoose refuse de mettre son nom. Surtout que Perrin les avait même aidés sur le système MRQ de magie !!

  2. Mongoose is a problem belonging to the past - exactly as Avalon Hill is. Whatever they did, it is no longer relevant.

    Steve Perrin gets the credit he deserves for designing the basic D100 system 30+ years ago (along with Ray Turney et al., by the way). This is the ONLY thing that matters.