Following on from my last post about movement and mounted combat I have been thinking about combat rounds.
There are three combat round lengths in the ICE world. RM2, Spacemaster and I guess RMSS use the 10 second round. RMU uses 5 second rounds and HARP uses a 2 second round.
If was obvious that the 10 second round didn’t work for modern day and Sci Fi. There is no way you can only squeeze the trigger of a gun once every ten seconds. The fix was to introduce fire phase 1 and 2 into the standard RM2 phased combat round.
I am having a frustrating week this week. I had so many plans, my wife is away at the Edinburgh Fringe so I could really dedicate loads of time to just writing (and horse riding whenever I get stuck). As it happens I have spent the week mostly in the car going from one place to another and have achieved very little and I have the same in store all weekend! This was supposed to be the week I tackled my Rolemaster for young players project (GameMaster Kids). For a bit of light relief I was going to put some more meat on the bones of my HARP/FATE hybrid under the working title of FART. I am way behind with my 50 in 50 adventures and that just about sums up my week.
I am intrigued by ITDs critical tables. I have never seen them but it came up recently in a discussion on on armour by the piece that there are different critical tables by location and only three locations; limbs, head and body.
For me the only piece of RM that has to be retained is the critical; everything else has to earn its place at the table. If it is more effort that it adds to the game I am inclined to cut or replace it.
There was a comment to my last post that read:
I am spending the day travelling today. I was up at the crack of dawn to get the train to London and right now I am sat in Caffè Nero at Heathrow terminal 5 waiting for my flight to Switzerland. Initially I thought I may end up missing my Friday article this week. One the Iron Crown forum there is a discussion going on about allowing a character to change professions.
Professions are so ‘loaded’ in Rolemaster that I knew this would turn into one of those rambling threads.
We all know the skills system(s) in Rolemaster are a bit of a shambles, the stats system is decidedly wonky with its 11 stats working in several different ways. The magic system seems to have as many people favouring HARP scalable spells as those that like the lists and those that like spells as skills. What almost everyone seems to agree on is that the Criticals with their mix of graphic description, dark humour make Rolemaster completely Rolemaster.
A nice round 11 stats
Deconstructing Rolemaster a little, the stats system is not particularly outstanding. The whole stats system lacks conviction, there is one option to use just a single stat bonus with skills, another to use the average of two or three stats and the latest version with smaller stat bonuses that are added together. If you bring HARP into the frame then there are 8 stats, in Rolemaster there are 10 stats if you ignore the poor relation of Appearance that makes 11 stats.
I thought I would skip my “Weekly Roundup” for a player challenge. The challenge: suggest an interesting, creative or clever RM profession/magic item combination. The basic guidelines:
- One profession and one item.
- Artifacts are excluded.
- The combination should strive to make the “whole greater than the parts” or add an interesting dynamic or ability to the character.
- Extra kudos to the player who comes up with the best combo using the least powerful magic item.
This is a preview of
Rolemaster Player Challenge. Finding the perfect pairing
. Read the full post (415 words, 3 images, estimated 1:40 mins reading time)
I was reading Gnomestew blog the other day (and linked to some on the Weekend Roundup) and started thinking about optimal party size for me personally as a GM. It’s certainly harder to put together any group as I get older—conflicting schedules and responsibilities of adult players creates significant barriers to game times. Right now I have 3 core players who can attend our bi-weekly game and another 2 that attend less frequently.
After decades of GMing one of my greatest challenges has been to consistently invoke the feeling of surprise, wonder, fear and even caution into gameplay. While they may not be “jaded”, my gaming group have seen it all: there is no plot device, game trope or foe that will truly surprise them. We will probably never replicate the wonder and surprise we felt gaming when we young teenagers but I would still like to instill some caution into my players—they often make decisions based on the assumption that every encounter is perfectly balanced or that they will get bailed out by “greater forces” if they get in over their head.
This is a preview of
In Search of the Unknown: Reintroducing caution to your players.
. Read the full post (870 words, 3 images, estimated 3:29 mins reading time)