Friday, December 25, 2015

Scoping GURPS Crusades Character Creation and Campaign Book 4E

This is how GURPS character creation crusades would look like if I had the permission/blessing to make it with just GURPS Lite material. Its purely character creation and its design with being something fun to do and writing exercise.

Note: this comes with a Spreadsheet (the most Automation I can do by myself) that automates all the rolls and generates a stat block of such a character. It expresses the values by its "chapters". Again I prefer this to be in a Booklet of A5 or Statement where it is easy to reproduce and distribute. 

I believe on a style of play and set of details that would help expand GURPS user base and not just cater to the existing market. Its lonely being the only GURPS guy in the Philippines - I want the game's cost to learn and accommodate to be low that many casual gamers can get into it... that is for a longer monologue and rant about GURPS.

Chapter  0: Introduction to Crusades. 
  • Historical Game 
  • Human Ranges - assumptions of this character system based on adventuring human 
    • Attribute Scores of 8 to 14
    • Emphasis on Adventuring Humans and how much they are above the norm. even if they are born with Social Status, the stats make these characters exceptional than most. Rules for "Normals" exists (capping maximum stats and social status, and having more traits)
  • Since the booklet does not go into details of the system. Entries will have the Basic Set references (like B11 standing for basic set p. 11). 
  • Notes about Women in the Ages and how to Run such Games with women boiled down to a few bullets and 400 words. 
Chapter 1: Character Generation System. 
  • Roll Stats. 
    • "Gifts or Curses you were born with" Roll 3d6 on a table for the following stats: ST, DX, IQ, HT, Will, Perception, Basic Lift, Hit Points, Damage, Speed and Movement. Lowest end is an 8, and Highest is a 14. 
      • Note that stats can get lower because of various events and various traits.   
      • Brief description of these stats. 
    • Roll for Physical and Mental Traits.
      • Rolls d36 (roll 2 d6s, one as tens and the there as ones). 
      • Players get at most 2-3 traits. Because its hard to keep track and Role-play consistently more than such and Character gains more traits in "Life Events".  
    • "The Lot you were born in" Roll Social Status. expecting this to be several pages of tables and explanation per entry of classes per culture and an entry for each culture. If I can I will try to make maps of what the area consists off. The maps would be awesome as a 2-page spread and its regions before every Table, with greyed out areas of nearby regions that have blended peoples that relate to each table. 
      • Low end is Outcast or Underclass. Highest End is a scion of a Count level.
      • There is a Table to Roll for which Cultural Group you roll in. Its made up of its Eite and its Vassal or Client peoples. Players may Choose or Roll here
        • This is a table where PCs can roll 3d6 on for where the Character Comes from. 
          • each of this is a table for the Players roll where in Society their characters come from within these groups. 
        • Roman means rolling in a table where the Ruling society are the Byzantine Greeks. 
        • Holy Roman Empire is oriented around Germany and Germanic Elite. 
        • Frankia oriented around france and Frankish Elite
        • Italian Peninsula  
        • Iberia and North Africa
        • Levant and Islamic States
        • Turks and the Steppe Nomads. 
        • Kievan Rus and the Balkans (11C) 
        • The British Isles and Ireland. 
        • Scandanavia (Fins, Swedes, Danes, Norwegians) 
    • Roll for Social Traits. 
      • These bumps up or down the social status by a minor degree and grants social nuances to the character.  This also includes various obligations and undertaking. 
      • This also determines if the character has Siblings and Oaths to certain individuals. 
      • This is where the Character may be "Heir"
    • Roll Opportunities/Education. 
      • This is a roll to access to opportunities or education within or outside one's social status aka "lot in life". 
      • This is when the Character gets skills from their Family or their Background. Sometimes these skills aid the character in entering a profession.
      • Certain Backgrounds grants Literacy.  
      • Certain backgrounds also grant a Bonus to enter into a Profession. 
Chapter 2: "Change your stars" this is the opportunity to do so where the Player chooses the character's profession and let the dice fall. Of course they can go "with the flow" and gains a big bonus to enter a particular profession. In case they fail they can try to go by Circumstance.  
  • Choose Profession and roll to enter it and live as such. This is one of the few opportunities players try to roll and enter.  Typically its a Skill check, and default penalties apply for trying to get into it without the necessary background that grants at least the most basic understanding of it. 
    • These Professions have a specialty. 
      • They all have a page: like in Traveller. A page spread that looks at its Basic Skills, Specializations, Training Tables, and  "Events".
      •  Certain backgrounds make certain Professions Easy to enter. 
      • if a Character fails theree are other options and a Table to roll for as "Profession by Circumstance".   
    • Warrior - Kinda the most elaborate and I have to break it up to multiple entries. I haven't figured it out yet. 
    • Clergy - from monks to priests, and its higher echelons: bishops 
    • Artisan - basically all the skilled trades
    • Merchant - a buyer and seller, in the lowest ranks its a trader or monger, in the highest its a ship owner, monopoly holder, or banker.   
    • Scholar - specialities of Alchemy, Physician, and Arcanist (keeper of rare skills and knowleges). 
    • Agents - Someone who makes a profession as someone representative and personal agent. 
    • Steward (a literate Administrator) - IQ and Writing
    • Wanderer - someone whose had to wander for work and opportunities. 
  • Rules for Terms or Periods of Life in that profession, before the next opportunity to "Change Stars" arises. 
    • Life Events Tables including various circumstances. 
    • Contacts and Bonds Template for every Term. Where relationships with other PCs and NPCs are created and fleshed out. 
  • In the Spreadsheet Character generator this option would be tricky to make since its kinda open ended. 
Chapter 3: Fleshing out The Characters and Party
  • Party Skill Package, Equipment Packages, Hireling/Henchman Packages, Fleshing out the Character's current Circumstance (Initial Challenge Fronts), Rival and Enemy Creation, and Patrons Creation and Patron's Retinue. 
    • Load Outs and Packages galore
    • Minor NPCs and Patrons Templates (typically Baron and higher level of Status). 
    • Front Tables of Party Circumstance
  • Fleshing out NPCs and Bonds. 
    • Tables to add Traits or Nuances to Various Relationships, Equipment, Circumstances and NPCs. 
      • Tables are also used by the GM to create hidden dangers or opportunities with current NPCs. 
    • Hirelings and Companion Tables. 
Chapter 4: NPC galleries and various tables. A place to generate Social, Strategic, and Tactical Problems. It is almost a walk through of Dungeon world Fronts with tables for each part of the conflict. This adds a lot of value to such a program and to create a Doc template for other GMs to fill in their custom details would be exceptional. 
  • A library of an NPC every Profession and notes of Variances. If the Intended user is curious and wants to roll up a Circumstance and the NPCs around the circumstance. A kinda Self GM what the PC would do in this rolled up circumstance.  
    • This would be about 60 npcs with notes to modify them and make some wild card elements in them. 
  • This is meant for the GM to make "random" encounters. it has some basic notes of Dungeon World's Fronts. 
This would easily be in A5 or Statement a 100page booklet and a large Spreadsheet file. The output would be generated into a Txt File for easy storage of the file in the GM's devices (smart phone or tablets) or the GM can run in Gdocs Spreadsheets. A bored GM can use Chapter 4 and make a writing exercises connecting a random number of plot hooks, complications, and connections. - It emphasizes "connecting ideas" thinking. 

First One is Free

The booklet that would take a lot of work and would be needed that would be for sale: The Years leading to the crusade 1085-1095 and the years of the First Crusade. Time line, People, Peoples, and Places of 1085 up to 1099 and what was happening in most of the western and middle eastern world.

 Disclaimer on Accuracy (working with what is available for access in the time this was written and note that we cannot use PAID sources like JSTOR and various $1500 dollar history books in Google Bookstore. Notes on Altering History and going down the consequences of such. 

You can have tons of fun using the Free Character Creation Booklet. A bunch of hours enjoying making characters and a party, and creating various encounters in Chapter 4. Which results in: Knowing enough about gurps and understanding the kind of encounters a PC will find. It prepares you a bit, but not until an Adversarial GM starts running those characters. 

This includes Org-Charts of Familes and Succession. It talks about Armies and Economies, and Logsitics. How to randomly generate the GM's own complicated Families and the Libreoffice Spreasheet file of making such complicated families. The complicated rules of succession and claims. (Stuff any Crusader Kings 2 Player would know and love to try to play out). It will cover from Western Europe AND the Middle east

It will have a 4'x4' sections of the world map in PDF attachments. the GM can have it printed in a TARP at 300dpi and decorate his walls or set up in his Roll20 account. it will probably take 3x 4 x 4 maps to have enough detail. 

Here I would want to Include my SIMPLER narrative combat system and my simpler mass combat system specifically design to be easy on the GM's workflow.  Plus spreadsheet automation of all of this to be at a click of a button. 

Output Notes

  1. It would probably take 3 months (if full time) to write the free booklet and 5 months to write the second booklet. Triple if done part time but can be faster If I can work with a writer and scope and edit the work. Lolz by 2017 a book to try to revive interest in GURPS lolz. I think i can find local artists and co-writers and researchers in the Philippines and Online and manage them lolz.
  2. The Crusades Guide book is 200+ pages or the 20usd by gurps page to cost count. 
  3. In the end the GM is armed with a ton of usable material that takes in consideration optimized Workflow. The goal is a detail you can use and to give that detail page real-estate based on how much its going to be used. 
    1. People who have the booklet can share it and its designed to be gifted. I will make various videos of walk through of the booklet in 4mins, 7 mins, and 10 minutes. (note if the audience can go through these videos in youtube's x2 speed). 
    2. I will document my Running of such a game with the tools and publish my entire workflow so that people can see how much time it takes to make it - it also shows the GM skills i use. I keep my notes Open when it Comes to GMing.
    3. if this works out I'll schedule various Yotube Walk through of 4mins (so 2 mins if you speed it up) of various mechanics and play through. 
    4. Less than an hour to prep an adventure for 2-4 hours, and the ability to generate useful details mid-Session (in a 20-30 min break) when the Players really go far far outside expectations. 
    5. The ability to run for 2 players or faster decision making parties - the challenge being that they tend to make decision much faster and get through material much faster.  
  4. The ability to Reproduce the feeling of Historical Immersion and Framing of Historical Events in light of the people and its time. 
  5. Sadly people will need to find all this in about Basic Set (500 pages), Low Tech (200 pages), Martial Arts (200 pages). I cannot really influence this but I think a "Packaged" bundle is in order lolz Otherwise it would be a 150usd entry value lolz. 
  6. If people like it and want an additional head ache: magic and magical doctrine - how the world would look like if magic was real in the events of the crusades and Saints and Angels interceded in the events. 
  7. The eastern equivalent of this would be: Chronicles of the Three Kingdoms  its eastern equivalent would be as fun. And as a Mandarin Language student make it as a great entry way to learn mandarin lolz. 
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