OpenQuest

By on 24 April 2010

Way back in the mists of time, my gaming life started with Runequest.. (yeah someone rewrite Apple lane for me and make it cool). Ive played various inceptions of the % system ever since including all RQ up to and including MRQ, and of course Cthulhu in all its forms. However maybe its because im getting old or the fact that i have been spoilt by the rise of the independant game.. with the release of Runequest 2 by Mongoose im starting to get annoyed by IMO pointless crap such as Combat Maneuvers, Multiple actions and reactions per round, worrying about if i can parry as my weapon in 2 sizes smaller than the one im being hit with….. This stuff aint my bag so, on reccomendation im trying this and these are my views. Firstly i have never met Newt Newport, and know him only from his occasional posts here.. So here are my thoughts

Openquest D101 gaming made easy

The book is a nicely produced softbound A4, and 180 pages long. the paper quality is good, pages clean and layout easy on the eye, the book is an easy read and has a very oldschool feel to it. Ok the cover is colourful and somewhat gaudy.. I would say non professionally done, but its better than some covers ive seen… It would definatly draw a browsers eye, and the artist (Simon Bray) i think has definatly stuck with the oldschool theme going on. Interior art ranges from the really good to hard to see fine line drawings and standard fantasy clipart.. its not overdone but there is enough to beak up the text…i like it.. its been well thought out by the designer, layout person.

Chapter one – Is a why this game exists chapter.. Basically Newt is saying that like me he got disillusioned with all the chaff that had crawled into % style games.. So what he did was take his 20 years experience and make this system form all the cool stuff disregarding all the turd… That gets my vote from the start…. But does he actually have the dice to b ack this statment up… lets find out..

Characters – what we can expect from the standard % character build, non rigid and points buy.. Open quest gets rid of the add 5-10% here and there for outside factors and says hey stop beancounting either add nothing or add 25%.. like it, there are clear examples throughout as we watch Rurick come to life

Skills – As stated before OQ stops alot of beancounting and now if somthing is normal your on a base skill % roll simple is +25% and easy is +50%, the other way difficult and hard are -25-50%.. cant really say simplier than that skill discriptions and well explained and consise..

Equipment – Oh no a price list for flint and tinder and a 3m ladder, also i now know there is a 50sp difference between a draft horse and a riding horse!!! cant we just assume that all adventurers have flint and steel and a waterskin?? this section maybe pays homage to the RPG’s of old however IMO could have been half a page long saying if they want it let them have it..

Combat – this for me is where the game takes off no longer do we worry about strike ranks and weither or not i have enough actions for 2 attack and then a dodge …. praise the lord now in each round every one gets 1 attack and i defense… Yay 🙂 also no longer do characters have 1H sword 35% Throwing Axe 15% Spear 26% we now have three skills to cover it all Close, Ranged and Unarmed.. Ive run a few combats now and take it from me Openquest combat is as fast as it comes, and rightly so lets get it out of the way and get on with the game… However it may be to ‘indie’ for those that get a chubby over 5 foot steps and spring attacks and stuff.. for me this is the best part about openquest. Combat does give certain options such as all out attacks and total defends giving +25% here and there.. once again examples and clear throughout

Magic – Openquest has 3 kinds of magic Battle, Shaman and Divine. battle magic is non for pure physical combat but spellcasting in general, Shamanastic deals with the spirit world and divine obviously the gods… I like the fact that all characters have access to a little magic though thier cults and backgrounds and such… Like combat, casting is simple and well explained throughout

The Quest – This section deal with how to set up scenarios and also rules that may come up whilst generally gaming such as Travel times, light and illumination, falling encumberance and all that kind of tosh…. take it or leave it its up to you

Cults – A staple of Runequest, example cults and given with an expantion into divine magic and sorcery

Creatures – Badguys (and goodguys) to throw at your party a good spread and sound advise for making your own

The Game World – The stock setting The Empire of Gatan…. With The savage North already released as a setting for OQ this is only a rough starting point for a novice GM

Scenarios – We have two scenarios provided in the book which are the standard expected fair

Optional Rules – For those that want them

OVERALL THOUGHTS

Despite me thinking i would hate it, i actually really dig Openquest, its fast simple gaming. i could hand this book to a grizzled veteran or teenage newbie and we could be up and running in minutes. Its a nice book to look at and if i want to do fantasy now this is where ill be coming.. A nice well priced decent game from a British gamer Openquest is very vey good

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Guest isn't a real person, but this review has been written by one (a real person that is). They kindly submitted it for publication here. Their details are contained in the body of the review.

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