22 March 2023

5-Year RuneQuest Campaign Podcast

I have played an online RuneQuest campaign game set in Sartar for five years (I reckon it must be the second-longest I’ve ever played). We played approximately every fortnight; you can imagine the sheer number of episodes the campaign entailed!

The game started with RQ2 on Roll20, then moved on to the RQG rules (and Foundry) as soon as they were made available, and ended up with a hybrid RQG-OpenQuest ruleset, with the occasional “Runes in the Dark” homebrew for our (many) heists. 

Despite the many dangers, our party of five remained the same during the duration of the campaign... I was the only one to transition from a first character, killed in a single blow, er sting, by a Chaos wasp who rolled a crit in his head, to a second one, so we all ended up with Rune-level characters. The whole zero-to-hero shebang.

Our GM extraordinaire, Steve, has devoted an episode of his Orlanth Rex’s Gaming Vexes podcast to reminiscing about salient events, favourite rules changes, character arc vs story arc, and whatnot, from these five glorious years of gaming. Oh, and did I mention Chaos wasps?


20 March 2023

New BRP Book Coming!

 A replacement for the “Big Gold Book” is coming, along with a dedicated licence (ORC). Can’t wait!

(from the bluebird site)

28 February 2023

Cults of Glorantha

The tease is over! It appears we’ll be getting 10 books: the Prosopaedia plus a single book for each pantheon, instead of the three tomes (2 cults books + 1 prosopaedia) initially announced.

Not sure what the Mythology book will consist of. When asked on social media what this latter tome would encompass, Jeff Richard said it would be a surprise. For my part, I really hope the Mythology book will contain the long-delayed heroquesting rules.

14 January 2023

Industry News (OGL Debacle, ORC, and Monster Revolution)

A lot has happened in our beloved RPG industry in the last few months and weeks.

First of all, Flying Buffalo has sold Tunnels & Trolls to Webbed Sphere, who has been basically sitting on the IP and doing nothing with it since the purchase. Fortunately, Ken St Andre kept the rights of Monsters! Monsters! (which is basically the same game as T&T but with a different title), and now all the new supplements are marketed for M!M!, for which a new edition is in the works. — But more about M!M! later.

However, the big talk of the moment amongst RPG enthusiasts is obviously the OGL debacle by WotC. For those who have lived under a stone since Christmas 2022 I’ll try and summarise what happened.

1. A new version of the so-called Open Gaming Licence (OGL) has been leaked (intentionally or not, who knows). This new version implies a much tighter control by WotC over what is published under the OGL and, more importantly, is supposed to retroactively replace the licence that has been in place since the early noughties and under which a ton of games and settings have been published.

2. There has been a general uproar by players, designers and publishers alike, and many reactions, from closing shops and removing OGL-based products to moving to a different engine altogether.

3. WotcC clumsily denied what happened and said the new licence would be reworked. But that was too late: Paizo is currently launching the Open RPG Creative Licence initiative, also known by its acronym ORC, with allies Kobold Press, Chaosium, and Legendary Games. Little is known about ORC, mostly that it will be  a system-neutral open RPG licence that can be freely used across the RPG industry.

Many companies are also offering cheap versions of their RPG engines to show creators that there is much to be found outside of the OGL and the D20 engine.

Chaosium, for instance, is selling the PDF versions of the Basic Role-Playing System, of the RQ Starter Set and of the CoC Starter Set for a mere 99¢ at DTRPG.

Back to M!M!— Ken St Andre is allowing third parties to use the M!M! engine for their own products for a small percentage of the generated revenue. 

The Lair of the Leopard Empresses by Sarah Newton is the first RPG that has been announced for this new licence. The game should be released in spring 2023 and it is expected to be a ~250-page game that will include a fully-fledged campaign, city maps and gazetteers, full rules, spells, magic, treasures, and an introductory adventure.

Erik Tenkar of Tenkar’s Tavern fame is also preparing a M!M! supplement titled Sovereign Monsters! under this new licensing agreement. See his posts here [edited 2023-01-17] and here.

Exciting times ahead!