Friday, 10 February 2012

The big fight round up

So, we've had our challengers, how did they compare?

FU
Narratively great, it really suits the swashbuckling genre, but things can go bad quickly. No numerical values for anything.

FOR
Narratively rich.

AGAINST
A few Conditions and you can be swamped.
A narrow field of expertise.

SOLUTIONS
Beef up FU Points, you can decide on the outcome desired.

SCORE 4/5

LES DANGER CORPS
Didn't go quite as well as I expected. The roles were good but the general mechanics didn't really work.

FOR
Very broad Skills/Roles.
Nice use of all the funky dice I rarely use.

AGAINST
Hard to pit against a solitary foe, racking up danger and introducing threats,

SOLUTIONS
Come up with an alternate danger/threat mechanic. Maybe 1, 2, and 3 mean different things if they are rolled. 3 a complication or escalation, 2 a reduced hit, 1 a full hit?

SCORE 3/5

FATE 2
An easy victory for the accomplished swordsman, shows how much the rank really means.

FOR
Uses plain language, meaning challenges are easy to guage.

AGAINST
Even low powered enemies can hang around a long time with the standard damage rules.
Damage from weapons is not variable, meaning even a small hit can step up with a large weapon.

SOLUTIONS
Don't use the standard damage track for inconsequential foes.
Introduce a variable damage mechanic, like a damage dice for each +1 weapon damage modifier with + increasing MoS by 2, 0 staying at 1, and - reducing it 1. Statistically the damage will average the same, meaning no change to standard values.

SCORE 4/5

ADVANCED HEROQUEST
Worked well, although the Heinrich profile was pretty potent against the Goblins/Bandits.

FOR
I get to use miniatures, and I've got a lot of stuff I'd like to use.
A nice simple system (with familiarity), especially with the Career system tacked on, could represent anyone.

AGAINST
No narrative push as it was originally a boardgame.
The standard stats were probably too good.
Would probably have to work up some ready to use NPC profiles for various trades/ages/statuses etc.

SOLUTIONS
Amend the human average, say 4-5 in most things with 7s and 8s being exceptional, heroic average probably 5 to 7. See if there is a quick way to generate stats based on broad principles.

SCORE 4/5

PENDRAGON
A very good system, as the others are, but maybe a little too heavy and unfamiliar to me.

FOR
A detailed combat system.
Passions can really make the solo experience work, taking over the GMs role.

AGAINST
I simply don't know the system well enough to run it on the fly.
There are a lot of stats and skills so I would need the book to hand at every turn.

SCORE 3/5

OVERALL
Well clearly it is between FU, Fate 2 and Advanced Heroquest. FU is very good narratively, and the rules are incredibly simple while doing it. Fate 2 itself is incredible, there is so much to like about it, the Aspects, the Fudge dice and adjective ladder. Advanced Heroquest is an underused little gem, combat focused it provides easy rules, perhaps not as narrative as the other two, but does allow miniatures, something I'd love at this stage.

I think for what I want, Advanced Heroquest is the winner! It gives me the option to use miniatures, I know the rules inside out so I can run a quick game anywhere, and it has a little more crunch in the combat rules. I just need to do my tweaking and I think I'm set. FU is probably second, it is so rules light and narrative it is perfect for solo play, but I'm after a little more crunch here. Which I guess leaves Fate 2 as third, not bad in this line up, and really only just missing out in stellar opposition.

Until next time Steve

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