Tuesday, November 24, 2015

The Ease of Basic Fantasy

I challenged myself to tease out of my bookcase the text tools I've accumulated to run a game instantly. What would I grab? Would it work?

First experiment is Basic Fantasy Role-Playing Game (free pdf) with Richard Leblanc, Jr.'s AX1 D30 DM Companion, AX2 D30 Sandbox Companion, and CC1 Creature Compendium.

I got all four of these products through Lulu as a print on demand product. Granted Basic Fantasy is a completely free product as a pdf, but at less then the price of a pint of vodka delivered to your door I think it is worth spending for a print version.

AX2 has an Adventure Generator so this is the right start. The adventure generation tables have ten categories which require a roll on a d30. It is explicate on the tin, use of the product requires a d30. I don't have one, but online tools are readily available to generate random numbers, so honey badger don't give a shit.

Adventure Generator

Trigger:            Diary
Major Goal:     Defend Location
Obstacle:          Fix “broken” item.
Location:          Tower
Feature:            Library
Phenomena:     Fear
Villain Goal:    Power
Artifact:           Codex/Manual/tome
Theme:             Glory
Key NPC:         Slave              

Trigger:            Transaction
Major Goal:      Stop Impending Devastation
Obstacle:          Acquire Key Parts
Location:          Village
Feature:             Plaza
Phenomena:      Monster Plague
Villain Goal:     Utopia (at all cost)
Artifact:             Horn
Theme:              Wonder

Key NPC:          King

I rolled two times in each category just to see how different random rolls on these tables would perform. Doesn't disappoint. The first adventure generated makes the object of the game session an object, a "McGuffin". The second an exchange between (at least) two disparate parties. As the gods of probability dispatch their judgment you end up with divergent adventures. So far so good. You could go on with this. Adventure hook after adventure hook. But the PC's will make a move, then you will need meat on the hoof. 

Location will most likely be any player groups first move, so don't worry about the details of the goal, the scheming NPC's. price of drink, etc. They will move from point A to point B to achieve the goal. this means you will need to illuminate to your satisfaction the Obstacle which stand in the way of the PC's success. Scenario 1 considers a broken state which needs fixing while scenario 2 postulates the assemblage of particular parts of a greater whole are needed for success. Hand in hand kind of thinking here. Sorry, I didn't write the charts. So I will run to AX1 D30 DM Companion. Why? Because I am making it up as I go, 

So the PC's decide defending a tower containing a valuable book will get them to next level faster than the other (only) adventure opportunity on the table. So the AX1 book gives me table to generate the salient interior features of the "tower" but I can use the AX2 book to create overland challenges; yep, that easy. Not going to bore yo with the details, but it seems with these for books, a bag of dice yo can show up anywhere and get interested parties involved in one f'ed up adventure. Great sport.