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Author Topic: Homestuck Pen and Paper RPG  (Read 1993 times)

Zanzetkuken The Great

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Homestuck Pen and Paper RPG
« on: October 18, 2013, 07:39:52 am »

Thread title currently says it all.  Any advice on where to start?

I realized just how unspecific I was with the former thread title and OP content.  Therefore, I have redone it so that people can give relevant advice.

This is going to be a pen and paper RPG based upon the webcomic Homestuck.  However, while this is going to be based off of homestuck, please do not give wild suggestions that only have the reason, 'because it captures the chaotic feeling of Homestuck,' because, when you remove the story and just look at the inner mechanisms of Sburb, you see that the entire webcomic all follows a system of defined rules.  Much, if not all, of the 'chaotic feeling' actually comes from the story itself, but not the mechanics.


Spoiler: Current Information (click to show/hide)
« Last Edit: October 18, 2013, 06:52:33 pm by Zanzetkuken The Great »
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MaximumZero

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Re: Working on a new tabletop game system.
« Reply #1 on: October 18, 2013, 09:04:30 am »

That depends on what you want to do with the game. I mean, there's no point in making a combat system if you're going to do nothing but run a shop, amirite?
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Bauglir

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Re: Working on a new tabletop game system.
« Reply #2 on: October 18, 2013, 09:25:39 am »

Figure out what you're trying to do with the game. Why do you want to make a game instead of just playing one that already exists? What will your game do that nobody else's game does? You'll want a better focus than doing something that another game does, even if your game does it better.

After that, the next step is to figure out how you're going to do that. Then, fundamental mechanics that dovetail with that. Make sure you have the tools to understand any relevant statistics. Finally, you start throwing on the details, like actual stats for things. Consciously think about how those details are going to affect gameplay.
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In the days when Sussman was a novice, Minsky once came to him as he sat hacking at the PDP-6.
“What are you doing?”, asked Minsky. “I am training a randomly wired neural net to play Tic-Tac-Toe” Sussman replied. “Why is the net wired randomly?”, asked Minsky. “I do not want it to have any preconceptions of how to play”, Sussman said.
Minsky then shut his eyes. “Why do you close your eyes?”, Sussman asked his teacher.
“So that the room will be empty.”
At that moment, Sussman was enlightened.

Fniff

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Re: Working on a new tabletop game system.
« Reply #3 on: October 18, 2013, 11:36:01 am »

I frequently make my own homebrew mechanics for a tabletop game system I have in my head. Here's my suggestions. Try focusing on what you're going to do in terms of theme. I would suggest against making a medieval fantasy hack & slasher, as that tends to be rather overused. If you can't think of anything, think about a genre in fiction like survival horror or romance: how would you make an RPG out of that genre while remaining true to it's spirit? It's a good thought exercise.
« Last Edit: October 18, 2013, 11:54:05 am by Fniff »
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Zanzetkuken The Great

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Re: Working on a new tabletop game system.
« Reply #4 on: October 18, 2013, 12:07:22 pm »

Sorry I wasn't more specific earlier.  I ran out of time and had the leave for my classes when I noticed.  Anyway, the game is going to be a pen and paper RPG.  I'm not worried about making money with this since it is going to be based off of another work, homestuck.
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Bauglir

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Re: Working on a new tabletop game system.
« Reply #5 on: October 18, 2013, 01:30:18 pm »

Okay, so since it's homestuck, I would recommend overly complicated, inconsistent mechanics. Ordinarily, this is stupid, but if you're going Homestuck, you need to go wacky. For instance, tasks might be accomplished by the roll of a die. Say, a d20 with a target number (arbitrary example). Special powers can be used by playing various cards, some of which are modular (allowing or requiring you to play them with other cards at the same time). Many will modify your die rolls (whether by adding a modifier, extra dice, or giving you a dice pool, or whatever else you can think of), and others will grant you special actions that you just couldn't otherwise take.

Each class and aspect comes with certain cards, which are shuffled together into a player's deck. At the beginning of each narrative turn, which may be a distinct category from combat turns, a player may draw a card either from their deck, or a shared Skaia deck, which is mostly Weird Time Shit, plus several cards that add new rules to the game (for instance, the Green Sun, or Trickster Mode). Each of these special rulesets comes with their own deck of cards, one card from which is played every turn the decks are in play. Many should require increasingly bizarre mechanics - for instance, if God Tiers are out, you might need to get a particular score in a game of darts in order to determine whether your death was just or heroic, but a variety of other powers (for instance, Light powers) can let you alter your effective score.

Maintaining balance will be difficult, to say the least. At any rate, this is all off the top of my head. I wouldn't recommend actually using it. It's more an example of how inane your rules should wind up being, if you want to capture that genuine Homestuck feeling. The whole thing should wind up feeling like a game of Calvinball.
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In the days when Sussman was a novice, Minsky once came to him as he sat hacking at the PDP-6.
“What are you doing?”, asked Minsky. “I am training a randomly wired neural net to play Tic-Tac-Toe” Sussman replied. “Why is the net wired randomly?”, asked Minsky. “I do not want it to have any preconceptions of how to play”, Sussman said.
Minsky then shut his eyes. “Why do you close your eyes?”, Sussman asked his teacher.
“So that the room will be empty.”
At that moment, Sussman was enlightened.

freeformschooler

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Re: Working on a new tabletop game system.
« Reply #6 on: October 18, 2013, 01:48:00 pm »

Okay, so since it's homestuck, I would recommend overly complicated, inconsistent mechanics. Ordinarily, this is stupid, but if you're going Homestuck, you need to go wacky. For instance, tasks might be accomplished by the roll of a die. Say, a d20 with a target number (arbitrary example). Special powers can be used by playing various cards, some of which are modular (allowing or requiring you to play them with other cards at the same time). Many will modify your die rolls (whether by adding a modifier, extra dice, or giving you a dice pool, or whatever else you can think of), and others will grant you special actions that you just couldn't otherwise take.

Each class and aspect comes with certain cards, which are shuffled together into a player's deck. At the beginning of each narrative turn, which may be a distinct category from combat turns, a player may draw a card either from their deck, or a shared Skaia deck, which is mostly Weird Time Shit, plus several cards that add new rules to the game (for instance, the Green Sun, or Trickster Mode). Each of these special rulesets comes with their own deck of cards, one card from which is played every turn the decks are in play. Many should require increasingly bizarre mechanics - for instance, if God Tiers are out, you might need to get a particular score in a game of darts in order to determine whether your death was just or heroic, but a variety of other powers (for instance, Light powers) can let you alter your effective score.

Honestly, this just sounds like an even wackier Savage Worlds.

Which even has a full Homestuck mod.
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Zanzetkuken The Great

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Re: Working on a new tabletop game system.
« Reply #7 on: October 18, 2013, 06:42:15 pm »

Well, now that I am home and have access to a computer for a long enough time, I can get out all of the ideas me and one of my friends have hammered out so far.

Sylladex cards
Rather than having a list upon a page, sylladex cards will instead be made on their own separate cards, either a printed out version or the minimalist flashcard cut in half along the wider side.  With the printed-out cards, one side has the image of the item in the card, the other has the captcha code.  With the flashcards, the 'blank' side would be used for the image of the item, and the 'lined' side for the captcha code.

Strife Specibus
A maximum of three different strife specibi can be held by a single player at one time, with a maximum of six weapons per specibi.  If two specibi wind up matching (broken being an exception), then the contents of one are transferred over to another, with the excess past 6 being dumped out, and one of the two returns to a default '_____kind' specibus.  If the weapon you are wielding becomes broken, then it transforms the whole specibus it is attached to transforms into that '-kind' unless you have a matching broken '-kind' of that type elsewhere.    Broken '-kinds' can be repaired into the original '-kind' by fixing the broken weapon.  Besides this, the strife specibus becomes permanently of the '-kind' you originally allocate it to be, so be careful in your choices.  All players start out with one specibi, with the rest possibly being gained over the course of the adventure.  Strife Specibi cards are similar to the Sylladex cards in structure, but have a characture of the -kind the specibi is on the front, and the weapons being upon the back.

Roll bonuses
Rather than having the roll bonuses being tied to stats and skills, each will instead be tied to various 'feats' (name may be changed later) that can be gained if you fulfill the statistic and level requirements.

God Tiers
There are three ways to have the character's god tier selected.  First, the game master simply chooses the god tiers for the characters.  Second, the game master instead has the players take an online quiz as their characters would answer to have that select the god tiers (fairly comprehensive one here.  Third, roll the dice to have it randomly decide the character's god tier.  Note: the latter may not lead to a viable session without GM manipulation in smaller groups.

Character Sheet
-image here later-

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

This is a good idea, but that could get a tad too difficult to manage with a card-based system from my point of view.  I'm not worrying too much about the 'feeling' right now, I'm just wanting to get the basic mechanics working, then start adding the chaos.  Honestly, if you look away from the story of homestuck, you can actually see that it all follows an internalized logical system that isn't deviated from all that much.
« Last Edit: October 18, 2013, 06:47:49 pm by Zanzetkuken The Great »
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Quote from: Eric Blank
It's Zanzetkuken The Great. He's a goddamn wizard-dragon. He will make it so, and it will forever be.
Quote from: 2016 Election IRC
<DozebomLolumzalis> you filthy god-damn ninja wizard dragon

Zanzetkuken The Great

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Re: Homestuck Pen and Paper RPG
« Reply #8 on: October 20, 2013, 08:33:34 am »

Is everyone waiting for the character sheet, or is there no interest?  I'd really like feedback on the above ideas, as well as some suggestions for the roll chart, abilities, feats, etc.
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A Rose for a Kingdom (FF.net) - A YGO/RWBY crossover I'm working on that may take time away from posting.
Quote from: Eric Blank
It's Zanzetkuken The Great. He's a goddamn wizard-dragon. He will make it so, and it will forever be.
Quote from: 2016 Election IRC
<DozebomLolumzalis> you filthy god-damn ninja wizard dragon