Building a Random World. Part 4: System. By Yasadu De Silva

wfrp3_contents

Hello all,

As you know, the world I am creating is for a tabletop RPG (see Part 1 if you don’t know what a tabletop RPG is). Thus, I need to decide what tabletop RPG (or system) I’m going to use to play the world. The system is important because the character options and rules can dictate the setting. For example, the world’s most popular RPG, Dungeons and Dragons, is a RPG of high fantasy with flashy explosive spells. If I use D&D in my world with no modifications, my world will eventually become something closer to high fantasy, which is not what I want. So before I do anything else, I will decide my system. Below is a list of systems I considered, and their pros and cons.

Name Pros Cons
Warhammer Fantasy Roleplaying: 2nd Edition WFRP2 has a grim feel, which is good for low fantasy. In addition, it has many rules, including optional rules for armor layers and hit location (stab the torso or the right arm, etc.). It uses a d100, which I’m familiar with. WFRP2 assumes that you are using the Old World setting, which affects some of the rules (equipment, races, monsters, etc.)
Harnmaster  Harnmaster is a low fantasy RPG. It also has detailed rules for armor layers and hit locations, which are more detailed than WFRP2. It has low magic, being near-mundane. It uses a d100, which I’m familiar with. The complexity is mostly in character creation, but it might scare my friends away from playing. In addition, the only races are human, dwarf, and elf.
Runequest 6  It uses the same basic engine as another RPG, Call of Cthulhu, which is one of my favorites. One of my friends and his group is also familiar with CoC, so they might like RQ6. Has rules for health per hit location. Apparently, this book is poorly organized. For example, sprinting is mentioned on page 58, but finally elaborated upon on page 438.

After deliberating, I have chosen to use WFRP2.

Thank you,

Yasadu De Silva

Building a Random World. Part 3: Sociology: Races. By Yasadu De Silva

dice

By: Yasadu De Silva

Hello all,

I’ve recently begun building a world for a tabletop RPG. To see what a tabletop RPG is and what I will use to create the world, look at my Part 1 post.

Sociology is important because it is the people and races that inhabit the world. Without it, my world would literally have no sentient life, which isn’t good for the RPG I want to play (it may be interesting to play non-sentient life in a rules-light system though). To develop sociology in my world, I followed these steps.

First, I need to decide what races inhabit my world, and which ones are major, minor, and dominant. I need to roll a d3 (or d6 divided by two) and subtract 1 (d3-1 in short form). I get two. Then, I roll for major races. Rolling d4+2 gets me four. Finally, I roll for minor races. Rolling 4d4 gives me four minor races. Then I need to roll d100s to find out which races are in my world. I get: giants and humans as dominant; elves, halflings (hobbits but without copyright), lizard men, and gnolls (hyena people) as major; and hsing-sing mammals (here: http://www.lomion.de/cmm/hsingsin.php), doppelgangers, arakocra (bird people), and dwarves as minor. Now, I need to create subcultures for some of the races. Let’s pick: humans, lizard men, giants, and elves. After rolling, I find that: giants have 3 seperate subcultures, humans have 4, elves have 3, and lizard people have 2. I will flesh out these subcultures later. But first, I should decide where these races live. After rolling, I find that: giants tend to the mountains, humans to the forests, elves to rivers, halflings to the northeast, lizardmen to the southwest, gnolls to subtropical regions, hsing-sing mammals to the jungles, doppelgangers go wherever, aracockra to the southeast, and dwarfs to the grasslands.

Next time, I will be taking a look at a system, then I will be returning to Sociology for kingdoms.

Thank you for reading,

Yasadu De Silva

Building a Random World. Part 2: Geography and Seismology. By Yasadu De Silva

hexographer

By: Yasadu De Silva

Hello all,

I’ve recently begun building a world for a tabletop RPG. To see what a tabletop RPG is and what I will use to create the world, look at my previous post.

Geography is important in a world because it can shape civilizations. For example, the first settlements were built near water sources. Land formations such as mountains can make a nation difficult to invade. The steps below show my process in fleshing out the geography for my world.

I need to create a map of the world. For this map, I am using the free version of a program called Hexographer. The map is divided into 20 triangles, called regions. First, I need to decide my world shape. To make it simple, I’ll choose sphere. Then, I must find my world size. Rolling a 100 sided die (referred to as a d100. Six sided die are referred to as a d6, Four sided as a d4, etc.) I get a 39. If you don’t have the necessary fancy gamer dice, use this dice roller: http://www.wizards.com/dnd/dice/dice.htm. The 39 gets me a 4800 mile diameter (For reference,  Earth has a 8000 mile diameter). It also means that one hex on the world map equals 300 square miles. After finding the world size,  I need to find how much water there is. Rolling a d100, I get 71. Looking at the table, that means that the world is 80% water. I begin to add in the amount of land needed. Then I roll 4 d4s, or 4d4, to find the number of plates. Rolling a d6 for each plate size, I get: 5, 2, 1, 1, 6, 2, and 3. Adjusting for the inaccuracy of drawing, I get this: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B1lnBRWcjbSBN2puOUVGYnExVkk/view?usp=sharing. Then, I roll for plate movements and earthquakes/volcanic islands. I get this:https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B1lnBRWcjbSBN3ZuZFpmeVFneEk/view?usp=sharing.

Next time, I will be looking at political geography, or the various races and kingdoms that inhabit my planet.

Thank you for reading,                                                                                                                         Yasadu De Silva

Building a Random World. Part 1: introduction. By Yasadu De Silva

rpg2

By: Yasadu De Silva

Hello all,

Recently, I had the idea to start a new tabletop RPG campaign. A tabletop RPG is where a group of friends sit around a table telling stories about characters they made up. All the major points of a story are there (setting, plot, etc.) However, there are two major points in which tabletop RPG’s differ from collaborative storytelling. Firstly, what the characters can do in the story is determined by rules and dice. There can be many rules; for example, RPG’s like Pathfinder or Shadowrun, or very little rules, for example RPG’s like Risus or Dungeon World. Secondly, the setting and the non-player characters are controlled by one person who does not have a character, called the GM. Sometimes, most of the setting is included in the rules, sometimes, the GM makes the setting by his/herself. For me, this is the case. I want to make a dark, low fantasy (low to no magic) setting for a RPG. I haven’t decided specifically which RPG, but most likely, it will be a RPG with many rules.

To do this, I have employed the aid of a book called the World Builders Guidebook, by Richard Baker.

Image result for world builder's guidebook

It is now out of print, but you can find many copies floating around on the internet. There are many random tables inside, which I will use to build the world I want.

Thank you for reading,

Yasadu De SIlva.

Undertale Review

Undertale, a fairly new video game, is a very unique RPG (role-playing-game.) The game takes place in a world that has both monsters and humans living together. However, war broke out, and the humans were the victorious species. The humans sealed the monsters underground with a magic spell, nothing can get out, but anything can get in. You take the role of a child who has fallen down through the monster barrier. You will meet many characters who you can choose to befriend or kill. In fact, you can go through the entire game without hurting a single person, you could kill everyone you meet, or combinations of these two. Whatever you do will affect the ending of the game, and the endings will make you think twice about the choices you’ve made throughout the game. I won’t go into much details to prevent spoilers, but you can get the game and soundtrack for $10 or try the free demo here or you can get it off of Steam. Speaking of the soundtrack, this game has the best one I have ever heard, from “Megalovania”, to “Bonetrousle”, to “Spear of Justice”. The main aspect of this game is humor, character dialog, and player choice (Undertale Website). There are a wide range of characters, ranging from sans to PAPYRUS, each with their own personality and memorable quotes, from “do you wanna have a bad time?” to “NYEH HEH HEH!” This game, many, many, times, breaks the fourth wall. Some characters remember what you did in previous runs of the game, others will talk to you about certain things that actually have meaning with multiple runs of the game. Overall, this is the best game I have ever played and I highly recommend getting it.

Cole, 8th Grade