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Discworld - Best system?

NewLifeForm

First Post
I'm going to be running a campaign set in the universe of Terry Pratchett's Discworld. What system would you recommend for doing so? Oddly, I started to think a rules lite, very simple system would work best, but now I'm not so sure. When one thinks comedy, one thinks simple rules and yet Discworld is full of action, details and people do get killed (but rarely the main characters).

I'm considering Ars Magica (Ars Discus?) for it's easy yet detailed rules and it's comprehensive magic system. Any other ideas?

NewLifeForm
 

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Caliban

Rules Monkey
NewLifeForm said:
I'm going to be running a campaign set in the universe of Terry Pratchett's Discworld. What system would you recommend for doing so? Oddly, I started to think a rules lite, very simple system would work best, but now I'm not so sure. When one thinks comedy, one thinks simple rules and yet Discworld is full of action, details and people do get killed (but rarely the main characters).

I'm considering Ars Magica (Ars Discus?) for it's easy yet detailed rules and it's comprehensive magic system. Any other ideas?

NewLifeForm

There is a Gurps Discworld book already in print, if you like that system.
 

Stone Dog

Explorer
Caliban said:
There is a Gurps Discworld book already in print, if you like that system.
It also comes prepackaged with Gurps Lite so it is a stand alone game. Regardless of the system, Gurps Discworld is an excelent resource for any GM intending on running a Discworld game. Maybe I'll never actually run a game of it, but I love reading that thing. Plus my copy is signed by Terry Himself. :D
 

NewLifeForm

First Post
Yes, but No

:p

While I appreciate the heads up, I happen to own the hardcover version of that game and will be the first to say it's an excellent sourcebook, as most GURPS books are. I will also be the first to say that while I love the material, I don't like the rules. I'm looking for suggestions on an alternative.

Let me also be the first to say Slefgamenkel, for no good or discernable reason.

NewLifeForm
 



Stone Dog

Explorer
NewLifeForm said:
:eek: Please allow me to worship the bookshelf you keep that book on!

NewLifeForm
Tithing baby. As any advanced Discworld priest will tell you, it is all about the tithing.

I also have Monsterous Regiment signed with some sort of message that I didn't ask for and I can't decipher. If he ever comes back to San Diego I'll have to ask him "Excuse me, but what exactly does this mean?"
 

Wombat

First Post
While GURPS Discworld has lots of great information, I don't think it is necessarily the best system for such a campaign. Equally, as much as I love Ars Magica, I think it is a bit rules-intensive (and too magically oriented) for such a campaign.

Personally I would go with either Fudge or Over the Edge. Both are very simple systems that allow a character to have a number of broad, appropriate skills that may then be interpreted to fit the given situation.

Discworld strikes me as the ultimate Rules Lite setting! :)
 

Stone Dog

Explorer
Wombat said:
Discworld strikes me as the ultimate Rules Lite setting! :)
Not to me. The level of detail in GURPS Discworld is just what I need out of the setting. It runs very well on Gurps Lite and most of the crunchy bits are in character creation (substantially cut down by the excelent templates). Once you get past that then the rest of the game is 3d6 under your effective skill. Easy. Oh all the charts and stuff in the main books? You don't need them. You don't really even need everything in Gurps Lite. I couldn't imagine playing Discworld with any other system and enjoying it. Really, I've tried.

God I've never wanted to play a dwarf so much as when I saw the little gritsuckers in Gurps DW. I love it so.
 

Psychotic Jim

First Post
I don't know. I think rules flexible would be as important as rules lite. A system that allowed a lote of handwaving for special cases seems to me to be the best. A lot of things on the Disc might not fit perfectly into a really concrete, defined system.

But then again, a mindset might be just as good as a ruleset. I ran a successful game of Discworld using 2nd Edition D&D rules a while ago. I think the GURPS book is useful no matter what rules sytem you use.

It might be a different purpose from what it was intended for, but I suspect the BESM engine might work for Discworld.
 

Jürgen Hubert

First Post
True20 might also work well, especially the PDF version, since it doesn't have unrealistic things like escalating Toughness saves.

Invoking "realism" in the above sentence was deliberate, by the way. Especially in the later books you get the feeling that despite the comedy and the slapstick, Discworld is relatively "realistic" - more so than most other fantasy settings out there. People still bleed and even die. No one is really invulnerable, and ultra-cinematic stunts are a rarity (it should be noted that some of the most badass fighters in the setting are more than a hundred years old with lots of age-related health problems, not to mention dead.

And magic seems to be very fatiguing, so the True20 magic system should work fine as well.
 

HellHound

ENnies winner and NOT Scrappy Doo
Stone Dog said:
It also comes prepackaged with Gurps Lite so it is a stand alone game.

Standa alone game... grumble grumble...

I used to be a fan of SJGames. However, I had long ago given up GURPS and had sold all the core rules for GURPS 1st edition, and hadn't bought any of the new GURPS material, because GURPS really wasn't my cup of tea.

I bought GURPS Discworld through the SJGames website for my wife as a present, excited because it claimed to be a stand-alone game. My wife and I were very interested in running an Unseen University mini-campaign with another friend.

And of course, GURPS Discworld / GURPS lite doesn't include the GURPS rules for magic.

Yep - fantasy setting - with magic, wizards, spells, etc... but no rules for magic.

One geek-rific anniversary gift down the tubes, I asked SJGames for a refund, or at least for an excerpt from a book that does describe how magic works in GURPS. I got a 'friendly' response that I would have to (a) buy the core GURPS book to get the rules and no they won't send me the excerpt and (b) suck it up, they don't give refunds and the book -is- a stand-alone RPG since no one actually needs the magic rules to play the game.

I ended up indeed buying two core books of GURPS rules, but never ran the game because of the bad taste left in my mouth from the horrible customer service. To this day, I only buy non-RPG products from SJGames because of this, and get REALLY rilled up whenever I see a release that claims to be "powered by GURPS".

(BTW, the purchases from Warehouse 23 weren't completely wasted, I also picked up two boxes of boosters for one of my fave OOP CCGs, XXXenophile).
 

Darmanicus

I'm Ray...of Enfeeblement
Oh man, I've still got this mini-adventure in an edition of a Gamesmaster mag set in Discworld and there's this hilarious scene where I think the party's paladin's intelligent weapon kicks off at another guys intelligent weapon; a bar brawl ensues I do believe! It was very funny.
 

PJ-Mason

First Post
HellHound said:
Standa alone game... grumble grumble...

I used to be a fan of SJGames. However, I had long ago given up GURPS and had sold all the core rules for GURPS 1st edition, and hadn't bought any of the new GURPS material, because GURPS really wasn't my cup of tea.

I bought GURPS Discworld through the SJGames website for my wife as a present, excited because it claimed to be a stand-alone game. My wife and I were very interested in running an Unseen University mini-campaign with another friend.

And of course, GURPS Discworld / GURPS lite doesn't include the GURPS rules for magic.

Yep - fantasy setting - with magic, wizards, spells, etc... but no rules for magic.

One geek-rific anniversary gift down the tubes, I asked SJGames for a refund, or at least for an excerpt from a book that does describe how magic works in GURPS. I got a 'friendly' response that I would have to (a) buy the core GURPS book to get the rules and no they won't send me the excerpt and (b) suck it up, they don't give refunds and the book -is- a stand-alone RPG since no one actually needs the magic rules to play the game.

I ended up indeed buying two core books of GURPS rules, but never ran the game because of the bad taste left in my mouth from the horrible customer service. To this day, I only buy non-RPG products from SJGames because of this, and get REALLY rilled up whenever I see a release that claims to be "powered by GURPS".

(BTW, the purchases from Warehouse 23 weren't completely wasted, I also picked up two boxes of boosters for one of my fave OOP CCGs, XXXenophile).

See...now this worries me. I saw the gurps sourcebook for Hellboy and i planned on getting it. I thought to myself "Hey, i can stand to play gurps if it allows me to run a great Hellboy campaign". Now i wonder if it would be incomplete? Hmm..well i probably will get it just to have a good background sourcebook for a Hellboy campaign. Its not like i don't have 101 systems i could use for it, but it would nice if the book does what it claims it can.
 
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kolikeos

First Post
although thats a great idea and i really like terry prachets books i don't see myself ever running a compaign in discworld. but if i did it will probobly be a d20 system, dnd 3.5 most likely, as i never actually used any other system and probobly never will.
 

NewLifeForm

First Post
In this vein...

PJ-Mason said:
Hmm..well i probably will get it just to have a good background sourcebook for a Hellboy campaign. Its not like i don't have 101 systems i could use for it, but it would nice if the book does what it claims it can.

You've hit the nail on the head with this statement. This is how I view GURPS and running anything in that system. I've already got a million complete rules systems. I like the material and just need to find the game that fits it instead of the other way around.

True20 is very intriging, but it would mean I have to buy another new system (sigh). I'm starting to think it may be a good idea though. Can anyone else recommend a D20 lite system worth looking into?

NewLifeForm
 

MoogleEmpMog

First Post
Silhouette Core from Dream Pod 9 would make a solid Discworld system. It's got a good variety of stats and skills but remains both rules-lite (or rules-liter) and very fast to play. Also, it's quite deadly in most incarnations.

One of the complaints I've heard against SilCore (higher skill levels give you a negligible chance of doing better because they cost more and add less) actually makes sense for Discworld - how many competent people exist on the entire Disc?

True20 would be a solid d20 alternative.

If you went the rules-heavy approach, you might as well use GURPS since there's already a GURPS Discworld book. Otherwise, I would go with HERO, but that's personal preference.
 

Mustrum_Ridcully

Adventurer
MoogleEmpMog said:
Silhouette Core from Dream Pod 9 would make a solid Discworld system. It's got a good variety of stats and skills but remains both rules-lite (or rules-liter) and very fast to play. Also, it's quite deadly in most incarnations.

One of the complaints I've heard against SilCore (higher skill levels give you a negligible chance of doing better because they cost more and add less) actually makes sense for Discworld - how many competent people exist on the entire Disc?
Hmm. Maybe two? The Patrician and Granny Weatherwax? :)
 

PJ-Mason

First Post
NewLifeForm said:
You've hit the nail on the head with this statement. This is how I view GURPS and running anything in that system. I've already got a million complete rules systems. I like the material and just need to find the game that fits it instead of the other way around.

True20 is very intriging, but it would mean I have to buy another new system (sigh). I'm starting to think it may be a good idea though. Can anyone else recommend a D20 lite system worth looking into?

NewLifeForm

Yeah, i think maybe the people who make non-system specific sourcebooks or rp aids have the right idea. Give me a great rpg oriented Hellboy sourcebook and allow me to pick my own system. Or maybe with a real simple system to indicate character strengths for easy modeling to everyone's favorite system/ like a 1-10 rating for character abillities in the sourcebook. That would probably be easy to relate to your own system.
 

Jürgen Hubert

First Post
PJ-Mason said:
See...now this worries me. I saw the gurps sourcebook for Hellboy and i planned on getting it. I thought to myself "Hey, i can stand to play gurps if it allows me to run a great Hellboy campaign". Now i wonder if it would be incomplete? Hmm..well i probably will get it just to have a good background sourcebook for a Hellboy campaign. Its not like i don't have 101 systems i could use for it, but it would nice if the book does what it claims it can.

From what I've heard, Hellboy is much better in that regard.

"The Discworld RPG powered by GURPS" was originally "GURPS Discworld" (though it still had GURPS Lite), and it works much better as a supplement than an RPG in its own right.

We'll see how the "Girl Genius RPG" (also "powered by GURPS") will do in that regard...
 

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