Thursday, 29 September 2016

Valiant Fantasy - Goals.

This will eventually take shape into a fully fledged game. For now, just thinking out loud.

Initial thoughts were here

What is Valiant Fantasy? (or what is it going to be, in any event).
We shall abbreviate this as VF.

*A way to play games inspired heavily by "classic high fantasy".
This strongly takes its origins in "Lord of the Rings" and "Three Hearts and Three Lions".
It also includes things such as the David Edding "Eleniad" series and you might argue even classic "fantastic literature" such as King Arthur and Robin Hood.

*The default mode of play is the Quest.
The heroes set out to achieve a goal or objective, whether one given to them or one they have decided themselves.
Quests may involve dungeon crawling of course, but the assumption is that there's a reason to go beyond loot.

*Characters are heroic but firmly within the range of mortal achievement.
"Random death" is less common.

*The game will assume that the characters are indeed heroes aiming to do some measure of good in the world, though they will often be flawed and faced with their own shortfalls.

*Be a bit more story and character-driven than typical OSR campaigning, without being a "narrative" indie-style game.

*Power corrupts. You are no exception.

*The rules must be as approachable as possible.
This will mean they will rely as heavily as possible on existing conventions, to make them function as similar to games like Labyrinth Lord or Swords & Wizardry as possible.

*The game is aimed to be broadly compatible with other OSR material, again for ease of use.
As such, the bestiary will look very familiar but tweaked to fit within the rules.

What is Valiant Fantasy not?

*It is not going to have a baked-in setting, though it will have an implied one (similar to how OAD&D implies Greyhawk)

*While aimed at what could be considered "wholesome" gaming, it is not a political statement on the morality of typical gaming campaigns or some such.

*It is also not a commentary on, criticism of or correction to the "hardcore gaming" approach many OSR games take (high chances of character stuff, low life expectancy etc.) even though it will be avoiding many such conventions.

(in other words, put down the pitchforks, Stormbringer 1st edition is one of my favourite games of all time)

*It is not intended to be ground-breaking design. Instead, it is intentionally derivative, intended to work within the general sphere of OSR gaming.

What will it look like?

*Low cost, print-friendly PDF, limited artwork most likely unless there's significant interest.

*It'll be aimed at experienced gamers, so it will focus on game rules and "crunch" rather than GM'ing or player advice.

*Intended to be self-contained and usable on it's own as a "complete" game (meaning all game rules required and a selection of critters and treasures)