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Old 05-07-2019, 07:12 PM
vihkr vihkr is offline
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Lightbulb Crowdsourced / Co-branded Alternative v4 Rules

I know this has been discussed before but I wanted to have a thread on this with the news of v4 and Modiphius being confirmed by Marc Miller. I have long been mulling over being involved in a v4 release and supplementary materials, like many of you have, while some of us have been actively working towards by releasing their own v1 and 2.2 sourcebooks and materials.

I propose that we crowdsource (forum-source?) our own fan-approved alternative version of v4 and release it during the same timeframe as Modiphius' version, or soon after. Competition is healthy, after all. I have a few suggestions on how we can proceed and if there is interest, why don't we just do it? We can work out the general plan here. Kickstarter is an option.

Ruleset discussion--which one to use?:

First a note on copyrights of existing games and game mechanics.

1. Create a version of GDW House Rules System, hybrid v1 and v2.2 if you will, with enhancements: v2.X. The general consensus here is that v2.2 is not broken, being a cornerstone in the GDW/FFE "house rules" system.

Pros are character generation, a feature and notoriety it shares with Traveller, a generally good combat system including vehicles and skill resolution with enough crunch to tackle relatively complex systems such disease and long distance travel and survival. I personally miss the deck of cards NPC motivation system from v1 but can live without it. Another big pro is the wealth of sub-systems which have been developed for it, many of them originating from this forum. A pro we can't deny is that we have a built-in, experienced in v1 and v2.2 playtest audience here.

Cons are its crunch (especially for the modern, post-Masquerade RPG audience), and its relationship with Traveller. Traveller 5e was a disorganized mess and it got creamed and rightfully so, in reviews. Furthermore, Twilight 2000 v1 or v2.2 generally scores between 2 and 3 out of 5 stars on popular RPG sites so call it a 2.5. This score is generally replicated by T5e on these same sites. Ironically, T2300AD tends to score higher, despite having the same rule system, but I partially attribute this to its setting. In all 3 cases, it is not a popular system with the modern RPG audience. Another con is its lack of integrated miniatures or skirmish rules to resolve larger battles (partially resolved with supplements) nor rules for the strategic aspect (like taking over a cantonment and becoming a local warlord). Another big con is that T2000 is really a sandbox system with poor organization and lack of coherent narrative to realize that kind of gameplay (until Twilight Encounters came out). Sandbox games have become really popular since the concept was (re-)popularized in retro gaming circles in 2012 or so. See this blog for more on T2000 as sandbox.

2. Go with a GURPS supplement or BRP system (like D101 from OpenQuest).

Pros are a built-in audience for those types of platforms and generally good market awareness and marketshare (and reviews). It would also be comparatively simple to graft our setting into either one of these game systems, which would allow us to come to market in relatively short order. A derivative of the latter system, Delta Green, even has detailed rules for modern systems such as electronics, hacking, holographic sights and recent body armour and a great way to model automatic weapons fire, as well as fear and reactions during combat. It also has a gear catalogue which rivals T2000! In a lot of ways, a derivative of BRP is a shoe-in for a system to consider.

Cons: if we go GURPS, we'd have to qualify as a licensed supplement with SJG; a BRP derivative, no such problem. GURPS and to some degree BRP, are rather crunchy systems, with extensive skill and equipment lists with heavy record-keeping which are generally out of vogue with the modern gaming crowd. GURPS and BRP are known as love-it or hate-it systems, but judging by purchases of either, there's a lot of people who love them. The character generation systems for both also leave a lot to be desired (point-buy vs. old-school D&D).

3. Warhammer/WFRP Hybrid: very much how like Flames of War and Team Yankee are derivatives of Warhammer, and WFRP is an RPG implementation of the latter, we could create our own version of WFRP but set in T2000.

The big pro is miniatures and the massive popularity of these games. While most of the RPG industry flounders, the titles listed above are growing. Check out BF Events and bear in mind that they are the junior partner to giants such as GW, Warmachine and Fantasy Flights Games with their Star Wars line of miniatures games and RPGs. Ease of accessibility, nice physical accessories and appeal to a wide market are all drivers of these games. As a follow-on RPG, WFRP has been praised as a great game system, although its setting largely helps with this. Built-in audience.

Cons: the rules themselves have been criticized as being tournament-focussed. The telescopic scale systems are gamey. There is a considerable cost and time to entry (unless we are talking about a Team Yankee RPG as the existing miniatures collections could be transferable). We'd have to negotiate licensing with Battlefront to go the Team Yankee way.

4. Ambush Alley/Force on Force-RPG Hybrid: add an RPG element to a skirmish game system.

Pros: a good skirmish game has been a long time coming and Ambush Alley filled the bill. Now repped by Osprey and with some sort of connection to Battlefront, this is effectively WFRP-lite but for Battlefront and Team Yankee. The same pros as above apply but the system itself is truly sublime. Like Fistful of Tows, Ambush/FoF biases character skill over everything else. This is a system which begs to be expanded into an RPG. A lot of players have huge modern and/or apocalyptic 20mm 1:72 miniatures collections and that is perhaps the scale which always worked best for T2000. We should consider 1:72 as a default scale for any T2000 v4.

Cons: may be difficult to make an RPG out of a skirmish game. Same cons as 3., above.

5. "Open World Survival" (i.e. retroclone B/X D&D):

Pros:
Forgotten Lands was a pretty huge success in this "new" field of games as of late. It's not really new as it's just a re-imagining of B/X D&D but with a clear hexcrawl sandbox bent. It has rules to facilitate the strategic aspect of the game, like fortress maintenance and domain expansion, without simply being a shopping list of what it costs to employ serfs to build the walls. Into this marketspace you could also add any retroclone, but IMO, Forbidden is the best of them, taking the crunchiness of B/X D&D or Torchbearer, for instance, and making the rules as simplistic and easy to play as possible. The key pro is that these types of games are immensely popular, for the fantasy RPG market, at least. They have a small barrier of entry (vs. say v2.2 or GURPS) and can introduce new audiences in short order.

Cons: The big one here is how to develop a contemporary ruleset in this type of framework without ending up with a busted system like d20 Modern. I haven't seen anyone be able to do it, although perhaps RECON came close and is the best example of this type of effort. In a lot of ways, Ambush Alley is really a modern imagining of RECON. Another con is the d20 moniker. Maybe we can go out on a limb here and use 2d6 or 2d12 or something but then we're in Modiphius' territory.

Settings:

1. Double down and go straight T2000 v1 or v2.2. Pros: alternate timeline nostalgia. Cons: not very popular, especially with everyone else outside this forum who couldn't even tell you what the Cold War was.

2. T1965. Pros: homegrown alt-timeline from this forum. Cons as above.

3. Team Yankee (the 198X alt-history timeline): Pros: good tie-in with rules system 3. or 4., above. Relatively popular, especially with wargamers (who can and do cross to RPGs). Tie-ins with a wealth of material such as Viktor Suvorov, Chieftains, Red Army by Ralph Peters, Red Dawn, Red Storm Rising and recently Brad Smith* Cons: licensing is going to be a legal issue, especially if designing a WFRP version of Battlefront's Team Yankee.
* Interesting side-note: Brad Smith is a wargamer and could be persuaded to be involved in our little project.

4. T2025 or T2035. As 1. and 2., above. Pro: outlined right on this forum. A big con is that this timeline is subject to becoming irrelevant like T2000.

5. Go more mass-market appeal with a generalized apocalypse setting with a military feel. Pro: appeal. Cons: misses the central design premise of T2000, which was: How do we roleplay military characters and weapons without the restrictions of the military? Another con is that the field is swamped--anyone wanna play Fallout RPG?

If you are still reading, thanks, I wasn't expecting to create a 9500 char post.

Last edited by vihkr; 05-07-2019 at 07:16 PM. Reason: URLs
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Old 05-07-2019, 10:18 PM
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I have only one general comment to add, I strongly believe any T2k successor should be keeping the "Cold War gone hot" concept and presenting it as alternate history.
However the issue is one of marketing because as you said, many of the potential customers don't even know when or what the Cold War was (and the few that do, think it's "ancient" history in the same way that we think of the wars of the Greco-Roman period as ancient).
I think an easier (although I hesitate to claim it would be "better" just yet) marketing approach would be to list it as a more real-world based post-apocalypse than other post-apoc games. There are a few players out there who are tired of the zombie/mutant apocalypse games on offer because there are so damned many of them (and a number of them aren't particularly good in my opinion). An alternative to that could be a welcome addition?
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Old 05-08-2019, 07:07 AM
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I would be interested in this project, but I also would ask, why don't we invite the guy who's working on this thing to come here and hear us out? As much as "competition is healthy", my concern is we would be splitting the community, and that would be bad.

The rest of your comments are good, especially about Ambush Alley and GURPS. I have a few ideas along both lines and wouldn't mind being a part of trying to help foster some unity and get us miniatures folks intergrated into the rpg rules from the beginning.
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Old 05-08-2019, 08:05 AM
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I would definitely be up for a continuation of the V1 and/or V2.2 timelines and rules as I suspect so would Raellus. I loved the old timeline and having the ability to continue it and flesh it out further and move it forward in time or detail areas that were never fleshed out in the original releases would be of huge interest to me - i.e. thus my release for Kenya and East Africa. I have no idea what the V4 will be but I dont see why there couldnt also be releases for the "classic" timeline as well to complement it.
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Old 05-08-2019, 08:28 AM
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...why don't we invite the guy who's working on this thing to come here and hear us out?
Their absence (surely they HAVE to know this forum exists) is one reason why I'm very, very cautious about the 4th edition. To me, this would almost have to be their first stop (amongst the handful of facebook groups and the like) to get a feel for what people are actually looking for.
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Old 05-08-2019, 08:44 AM
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Their absence (surely they HAVE to know this forum exists) is one reason why I'm very, very cautious about the 4th edition. To me, this would almost have to be their first stop (amongst the handful of facebook groups and the like) to get a feel for what people are actually looking for.
Craptacular. Lemme see if I can extend an invite through the various FB groups and see if we can get them to give us an audience? At least we can say we tried if it fails?
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Old 05-08-2019, 09:12 AM
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Lemme see if I can extend an invite through the various FB groups and see if we can get them to give us an audience?
I messaged them through their website about half an hour ago with an offer to discuss the three books which are already out plus mine.
Two working day reply time apparently....
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Old 05-08-2019, 10:37 AM
vihkr vihkr is offline
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Their absence (surely they HAVE to know this forum exists) is one reason why I'm very, very cautious about the 4th edition. To me, this would almost have to be their first stop (amongst the handful of facebook groups and the like) to get a feel for what people are actually looking for.
I was going to say. Looking at their website, however, it's pretty clear that this company is rather large (for a gaming concern), and is going to do it their way, and damn our opinion. I had considered this an option (talking to them or offering input) but discarded it as a viable idea for a number of reasons:
  • They have creative control
  • I don't like their 2d20 "cinematic" house system
  • We'd be effectively begging them to include our ideas to maintain our nostalgia
  • We don't know what the details are of the agreement between FFE/Miller/Modiphius
  • The smart play (as mentioned in another thread on v4) would've been to make the development process transparent, ala D&D NEXT, which led to v5 <-- this is a move we should seriously consider if we undertake our own development project: distro an early beta to all possible playtesters in our market and have them test it and send feedback early

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Old 05-08-2019, 12:15 PM
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I have only one general comment to add, I strongly believe any T2k successor should be keeping the "Cold War gone hot" concept and presenting it as alternate history.
That has General Sir John Hackett's name written all over it. When we started with T2000 it was 1984 anyway, so essentially we played a T1984 campaign and largely ignored the T2000 setting. In a lot of ways, this was because the source material was contemporary and the T2000 setting was speculative. The 198X timeline is what spawned all the popular fiction about the Cold War in any case (Red Dawn is the niche to mass-market linchpin here).

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I think an easier (although I hesitate to claim it would be "better" just yet) marketing approach would be to list it as a more real-world based post-apocalypse than other post-apoc games.
I tend to agree: apoc setting but with a 198X bent to appeal to both audiences. "Realistic apocalypse setting" without zombies, mutants or anthropomorphic turtles.
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Old 05-08-2019, 12:21 PM
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The rest of your comments are good, especially about Ambush Alley and GURPS. I have a few ideas along both lines and wouldn't mind being a part of trying to help foster some unity and get us miniatures folks intergrated into the rpg rules from the beginning.
When my buddy played AA for the first time, his immediate reaction was: why isn't this an RPG? Ironically, this was a claim made by the RECON developers back in 1982. Except for that and WFRP, and to some degree Warmachine, there hasn't really been a successful attempt at this type of hybrid, IMO. And a military/tactical game like T2000 has just been begging for it.

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Old 05-08-2019, 12:28 PM
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I would definitely be up for a continuation of the V1 and/or V2.2 timelines and rules as I suspect so would Raellus. I loved the old timeline and having the ability to continue it and flesh it out further and move it forward in time or detail areas that were never fleshed out in the original releases would be of huge interest to me - i.e. thus my release for Kenya and East Africa. I have no idea what the V4 will be but I dont see why there couldnt also be releases for the "classic" timeline as well to complement it.
We all have the nostalgia for it, brother. The issue lies in the fact that we don't have any idea what FFE/Modiphius are going to do with it. Furthermore, we start to cross into sticky IP copyright territory if we were to adapt the setting and then expand on it, without a legal agreement. In effect, we can emulate the v2.2 rules mechanisms and rewrite them without any infringement, but using the setting as well? That's asking for it.

That's why the T198X Cold War, or other settings I listed are better options. The setting millieu developed by Hackett and subsequent authours is broad enough that we can create our own T2000'esque storyline in that era. Heck, we could even pay Brad Smith royalties for his recent stories and directly include the scenarios he describes in his works. It's a great marketing tie-in for him. And I get that you guys have invested considerable time and effort into expansions for the v1 and v2.2 timelines; that work need not go to waste. Your Kenya and East Africa materials can be modified to fit our new setting, instead of being expansions on v1/2.2.
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Old 05-08-2019, 01:21 PM
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We all have the nostalgia for it, brother. The issue lies in the fact that we don't have any idea what FFE/Modiphius are going to do with it. Furthermore, we start to cross into sticky IP copyright territory if we were to adapt the setting and then expand on it, without a legal agreement. In effect, we can emulate the v2.2 rules mechanisms and rewrite them without any infringement, but using the setting as well? That's asking for it.

That's why the T198X Cold War, or other settings I listed are better options. The setting millieu developed by Hackett and subsequent authours is broad enough that we can create our own T2000'esque storyline in that era. Heck, we could even pay Brad Smith royalties for his recent stories and directly include the scenarios he describes in his works. It's a great marketing tie-in for him. And I get that you guys have invested considerable time and effort into expansions for the v1 and v2.2 timelines; that work need not go to waste. Your Kenya and East Africa materials can be modified to fit our new setting, instead of being expansions on v1/2.2.
Herein lies the question? Will this product be sold? If so, then we're yeah, trampling over the copyright like a herd of elephants. If however, we're honoring the terms of the FFE copyright language for fan products, then we are golden. That said, it's kind of a pain in the ass to do this for free.

I do however, have an idea.

Ok, in the early part of the oughts, FASA went under and Battletech had gone on a bit of hiatus. Meanwhile, Whizkids had gone and come out with "Mechwarrior", or as we in the community derisively called it..."click tech." It was not met well by a lot of the old hands and try as they might, we really didn't want anything to do with it.

Needless to say, "clicky tech" died screaming, and now, you can get the stuff for bargain prices on ebay and at cons. But, TPTB realized, there was a lot of vocal fans with money who wanted their old Battletech back. So what did they do? They came up with "Classic Battletech." Like Classic Coke, it survived where New Coke did not.

So where am I going with this? We need to make a case for "Classic T2K, by the fans, for the fans." Marc's done this before. He made Foreven Sector in Traveller a referee's preserve, for ref's to do with as they will. I am sure, with the right approach, we could get a similar outcome for Twilight: 2000.
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:02 PM
vihkr vihkr is offline
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Herein lies the question? Will this product be sold?
To be clear, we should sell this. We've all spent enough time making released and unreleased gaming materials for free, some of us for decades. I envision an LLP or LLC with those that are truly "in". I work at a big firm so the legal paperwork will likely be free or paid in kind (with booze or hunting trips).

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They came up with "Classic Battletech." Like Classic Coke, it survived where New Coke did not.

So where am I going with this? We need to make a case for "Classic T2K, by the fans, for the fans." Marc's done this before. He made Foreven Sector in Traveller a referee's preserve, for ref's to do with as they will. I am sure, with the right approach, we could get a similar outcome for Twilight: 2000.
I hear ya but there was a legal licensing agreement between WizKids (who owned FASA's IP) and FanPro, that produced Classic BT. This is similar to Marc Miller and FFE now. GDW went down, Miller and/or FFE bought/assumed/stole the rights to GDW and they are licensing some or all to Modiphius, and yes, I'm speculating here but it seems likely.

So if we want "Classic T2K", done the way we want it, and get paid for it, we'd have to:
  1. Figure out the arrangement between GDW-Miller-FFE-Modiphius
  2. Negotiate with both parties
  3. If Modiphius wants to do Classic T2K, we're screwed
  4. If FFE and Modiphius don't like Classic T2K because they are unveiling "new T2K", we're screwed
  5. Generally we're screwed unless we release Classic T2K for free under FFE fan licensing, which is subject to change at any time

That's why I'm a big proponent of T198X, cause we can do whatever we want while FFE and Modiphius do their own thing. Think Traveller v1, The Traveller Book, Mongoose Traveller and all of those divergent paths. One of those paths led to T2300 and GDW (via T2K), then to FFE and then to Modiphius. That's what I'm talking about.
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:38 PM
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Make of this what you will, but Marc Miller wouldn't consider publishing new material for the established T2K lines during his negotiations with Morphius.

I have not sold the rights to my e-published T2K works and would love to see them get the treatment that I think they deserve.

I'm worried, though, that my work is in a sort of legal limbo, because it was released by Miller under the FFE banner. Despite this seemingly "official" status- and the fact that he's making money from my work- he won't add my two titles to the canon list, ostensibly because of the license transfer. What does this mean? I don't know. I haven't reached out to Morphius because I don't want to get my hopes up. I'm curious to see what his response to Legbreaker's proposal is.

My gut feeling is that, moving forward, Marc is only interested in earnings from the existing T2K back catalog, not "new", compatible material, and that the new license owner is going to take things in a different direction. In other words, they have final say on any T2K material, new or "classic" from here on out.
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Old 05-08-2019, 04:02 PM
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Herein lies the question? Will this product be sold? If so, then we're yeah, trampling over the copyright like a herd of elephants. If however, we're honoring the terms of the FFE copyright language for fan products, then we are golden. That said, it's kind of a pain in the ass to to this for free.

I do however, have an idea.

Ok, in the early part of the oughts, FASA went under and Battletech had gone on a bit of hiatus. Meanwhile, Whizkids had gone and come out with "Mechwarrior", or as we in the community derisively called it..."click tech." It was not met well by a lot of the old hands and try as they might, we really didn't want anything to do with it.

Needless to say, "clicky tech" died screaming, and now, you can get the stuff for bargain prices on ebay and at cons. But, TPTB realized, there was a lot of vocal fans with money who wanted their old Battletech back. So what did they do? They came up with "Classic Battletech." Like Classic Coke, it survived where New Coke did not.

So where am I going with this? We need to make a case for "Classic T2K, by the fans, for the fans." Marc's done this before. He made Foreven Sector in Traveller a referee's preserve, for ref's to do with as they will. I am sure, with the right approach, we could get a similar outcome for Twilight: 2000.
First just a semantics thing, my understanding is that FASA did not go under, they thought that the gaming industry was going to die so closed up shop when the going was good. But regardless I think that there are two other issues to use the BattleTech example, first BattleTech (or Classic BattleTech) was never out of production/Dead when FASA closed up shop FanPro got the license and keep making stuff (with a lot of the same staff), and later Catalyst Games (who holds it currently) so it has been in production from creation to now (with possible exceptions for very short times when one company closed/lost license and next took over).

Also you are correct that lots of old hats did not like MechWarrior Dark Age (or clicky tech) but some of us thought it was OK, overall it lasted for six years. It was still selling when Tops (the baseball card company who owned Wizkids) shut down Wizkids.

So not saying that this is a bad way to look at going, but saying it may not be as easy as it sounds.
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Old 05-08-2019, 08:15 PM
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I know this has been discussed before but I wanted to have a thread on this with the news of v4 and Modiphius being confirmed by Marc Miller. I have long been mulling over being involved in a v4 release and supplementary materials, like many of you have, while some of us have been actively working towards by releasing their own v1 and 2.2 sourcebooks and materials.

I propose that we crowdsource (forum-source?) our own fan-approved alternative version of v4 and release it during the same timeframe as Modiphius' version, or soon after. Competition is healthy, after all. I have a few suggestions on how we can proceed and if there is interest, why don't we just do it? We can work out the general plan here. Kickstarter is an option.
I agree that competition is healthy if there is enough room for both, if not then you are taking from one to support the other, leaving not enough for either to survive. Now is this the case I do not know, but should we not at least wait to see what they are coming out with before we say I want nothing to do with it?


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Ruleset discussion--which one to use?:

First a note on copyrights of existing games and game mechanics.

1. Create a version of GDW House Rules System, hybrid v1 and v2.2 if you will, with enhancements: v2.X. The general consensus here is that v2.2 is not broken, being a cornerstone in the GDW/FFE "house rules" system.

Pros are character generation, a feature and notoriety it shares with Traveller, a generally good combat system including vehicles and skill resolution with enough crunch to tackle relatively complex systems such disease and long distance travel and survival. I personally miss the deck of cards NPC motivation system from v1 but can live without it. Another big pro is the wealth of sub-systems which have been developed for it, many of them originating from this forum. A pro we can't deny is that we have a built-in, experienced in v1 and v2.2 playtest audience here.

Cons are its crunch (especially for the modern, post-Masquerade RPG audience), and its relationship with Traveller. Traveller 5e was a disorganized mess and it got creamed and rightfully so, in reviews. Furthermore, Twilight 2000 v1 or v2.2 generally scores between 2 and 3 out of 5 stars on popular RPG sites so call it a 2.5. This score is generally replicated by T5e on these same sites. Ironically, T2300AD tends to score higher, despite having the same rule system, but I partially attribute this to its setting. In all 3 cases, it is not a popular system with the modern RPG audience. Another con is its lack of integrated miniatures or skirmish rules to resolve larger battles (partially resolved with supplements) nor rules for the strategic aspect (like taking over a cantonment and becoming a local warlord). Another big con is that T2000 is really a sandbox system with poor organization and lack of coherent narrative to realize that kind of gameplay (until Twilight Encounters came out). Sandbox games have become really popular since the concept was (re-)popularized in retro gaming circles in 2012 or so. See this blog for more on T2000 as sandbox.
With Traveler being under the Mongoose Publishing currently how does that rule set work (if at all) with TW2000 V1 to V2.2? If it does not (my guess but I do not know) then does it really matter that they were basically the same rule set once? Now I am not a game designer or anything like that but how difficult would it be to fix some (all?) of the cons that you listed? I do think keeping the old rules or even slightly updating them (but keeping them backwards compatible) is a good thing as it give you several sourcebooks right from the get go (maybe hard to find in Dead Tree, but available in PDF). Right now with how much thought I have put into it this would be my first choice.

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2. Go with a GURPS supplement or BRP system (like D101 from OpenQuest).

Pros are a built-in audience for those types of platforms and generally good market awareness and marketshare (and reviews). It would also be comparatively simple to graft our setting into either one of these game systems, which would allow us to come to market in relatively short order. A derivative of the latter system, Delta Green, even has detailed rules for modern systems such as electronics, hacking, holographic sights and recent body armour and a great way to model automatic weapons fire, as well as fear and reactions during combat. It also has a gear catalogue which rivals T2000! In a lot of ways, a derivative of BRP is a shoe-in for a system to consider.

Cons: if we go GURPS, we'd have to qualify as a licensed supplement with SJG; a BRP derivative, no such problem. GURPS and to some degree BRP, are rather crunchy systems, with extensive skill and equipment lists with heavy record-keeping which are generally out of vogue with the modern gaming crowd. GURPS and BRP are known as love-it or hate-it systems, but judging by purchases of either, there's a lot of people who love them. The character generation systems for both also leave a lot to be desired (point-buy vs. old-school D&D).

Now it may be because I like more depth but I do not think that the crunchy systems are as disliked as some think. I do think it is the case that a fair amount of youth today have no attention span, and so do not like the crunchy system. However I assume that if they are like most of my family they barely even have the attention span to play games were everything you need to play is on the cards you play, and if that is true then those players will not be playing any RPG. So I am guessing that we might lose a few players, but I do not think it will be as many as I hear people say. So GURPS would be my second choice as my understanding is that the system has been very stable (it was a long time ago that I last played GURPS).


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3. Warhammer/WFRP Hybrid: very much how like Flames of War and Team Yankee are derivatives of Warhammer, and WFRP is an RPG implementation of the latter, we could create our own version of WFRP but set in T2000.

The big pro is miniatures and the massive popularity of these games. While most of the RPG industry flounders, the titles listed above are growing. Check out BF Events and bear in mind that they are the junior partner to giants such as GW, Warmachine and Fantasy Flights Games with their Star Wars line of miniatures games and RPGs. Ease of accessibility, nice physical accessories and appeal to a wide market are all drivers of these games. As a follow-on RPG, WFRP has been praised as a great game system, although its setting largely helps with this. Built-in audience.

Cons: the rules themselves have been criticized as being tournament-focussed. The telescopic scale systems are gamey. There is a considerable cost and time to entry (unless we are talking about a Team Yankee RPG as the existing miniatures collections could be transferable). We'd have to negotiate licensing with Battlefront to go the Team Yankee way.

My first concern is that several of the companies are not well know for supporting games that are not hot sellers, so what happens if they pull support? Some (GW especially know for this) are not well balanced, how well will we be able to get around that if using there rule set? Several of the companies change their rules more frequently than I think is needed, if/when they do how does that affect us? and last concern that I have right now with this one is that some of the companies are disliked by portions of the gaming community (that does not mean they do not sell well) so how will this affect sales for a new/returning game that has no history with them? My thought right now is that this one is not a good option, but could be convinced otherwise.


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4. Ambush Alley/Force on Force-RPG Hybrid: add an RPG element to a skirmish game system.

Pros: a good skirmish game has been a long time coming and Ambush Alley filled the bill. Now repped by Osprey and with some sort of connection to Battlefront, this is effectively WFRP-lite but for Battlefront and Team Yankee. The same pros as above apply but the system itself is truly sublime. Like Fistful of Tows, Ambush/FoF biases character skill over everything else. This is a system which begs to be expanded into an RPG. A lot of players have huge modern and/or apocalyptic 20mm 1:72 miniatures collections and that is perhaps the scale which always worked best for T2000. We should consider 1:72 as a default scale for any T2000 v4.

Cons: may be difficult to make an RPG out of a skirmish game. Same cons as 3., above.

I have to admit I did not know anything about this game, so went to their web site and took a look at their forum, it may be even less active than this one. Only four posts with a date within the last year (OK, one more is at 11 months and 3 weeks) and most of those are 5 months or more. So with that level of activity how popular is the game? As for scale I have lots of 6mm (thousands), 15mm (hundreds), an 28-34mm (hundreds) and maybe it is because I do more tabletop games than skirmish games (all the skirmish games are done in the 28-34mm) so the 20mm just sounds like an odd size to me, as I know no one in my group has anything in that size. Then as it has the same cons as above makes this look like a poor choice to me.


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5. "Open World Survival" (i.e. retroclone B/X D&D):

Pros:
Forgotten Lands was a pretty huge success in this "new" field of games as of late. It's not really new as it's just a re-imagining of B/X D&D but with a clear hexcrawl sandbox bent. It has rules to facilitate the strategic aspect of the game, like fortress maintenance and domain expansion, without simply being a shopping list of what it costs to employ serfs to build the walls. Into this marketspace you could also add any retroclone, but IMO, Forbidden is the best of them, taking the crunchiness of B/X D&D or Torchbearer, for instance, and making the rules as simplistic and easy to play as possible. The key pro is that these types of games are immensely popular, for the fantasy RPG market, at least. They have a small barrier of entry (vs. say v2.2 or GURPS) and can introduce new audiences in short order.

Cons: The big one here is how to develop a contemporary ruleset in this type of framework without ending up with a busted system like d20 Modern. I haven't seen anyone be able to do it, although perhaps RECON came close and is the best example of this type of effort. In a lot of ways, Ambush Alley is really a modern imagining of RECON. Another con is the d20 moniker. Maybe we can go out on a limb here and use 2d6 or 2d12 or something but then we're in Modiphius' territory.

Settings:
I will admit that I have only played D&D once, but found it to be OK, would have liked more meat to my character. By that I mean it just felt like there was not enough to the character they were just print and play. One warrior did not feel different from another. I also see a huge issue with trying to do anything with Palladium Books especially if it has to do with kickstarter after they screwed over a large group of people with their Robotech Tactics game, I think anything that they are even remotely affiliated with will have issues.

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1. Double down and go straight T2000 v1 or v2.2. Pros: alternate timeline nostalgia. Cons: not very popular, especially with everyone else outside this forum who couldn't even tell you what the Cold War was.
I am not sure how this is really different than the first option? Are you saying just option 1 is modifying these rules and this is using them just as written?

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2. T1965. Pros: homegrown alt-timeline from this forum. Cons as above.
I am unfimilure with this alt-timeline, it is on this forum? I am guessing it starts in 1965? If that is the case I think it could be a good supplement but think what really sets TW2000 apart is the WWIII and "you are all on you own". It could be started in 65 but if the cold war is too long ago I think 65 would be worse. Having said that I do think it would be a good supplement like Merc 2000.

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3. Team Yankee (the 198X alt-history timeline): Pros: good tie-in with rules system 3. or 4., above. Relatively popular, especially with wargamers (who can and do cross to RPGs). Tie-ins with a wealth of material such as Viktor Suvorov, Chieftains, Red Army by Ralph Peters, Red Dawn, Red Storm Rising and recently Brad Smith* Cons: licensing is going to be a legal issue, especially if designing a WFRP version of Battlefront's Team Yankee.
* Interesting side-note: Brad Smith is a wargamer and could be persuaded to be involved in our little project.
As I have said in other posts on this forum I do not think that it is as popular as is being made out to be. My local group plays at least ten different table top war games at multiple locations, however when I asked most recently none of the players or staff know anything about Team Yankee. Now, yes maybe my location is the extreme outlier but I just have a hard time believing that we are that far out there. Also if we are going to try and do this on kickstarter BattleFront does not have the best reputation there after the Dust kickstarter that they were part of, not as bad as Palladium Books but still very far from positive. Also all the concerns I have with option three and four would apply here.

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4. T2025 or T2035. As 1. and 2., above. Pro: outlined right on this forum. A big con is that this timeline is subject to becoming irrelevant like T2000.
Regardless of what time you have it start in the timeline is always going to be come irrelevant in someways. As WWIII did not happen and knock on wood will not then you are going to have to make some adjustment to history. So I think either pick a date in the not to distant past and make changes from there, or some date in the near future and make the changes there. So I guess I kind of see this as potentially part of the other options.

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5. Go more mass-market appeal with a generalized apocalypse setting with a military feel. Pro: appeal. Cons: misses the central design premise of T2000, which was: How do we roleplay military characters and weapons without the restrictions of the military? Another con is that the field is swamped--anyone wanna play Fallout RPG?

If you are still reading, thanks, I wasn't expecting to create a 9500 char post.
I agree that does not have the correct feel to it. In a nut shell I think that first we should at least wait for more information on version 4 before we all decide to jump ship and make our own. However if it is wrong I do think there are some viable options from good to very bad, but just my thoughts and the are worth what you paid for them.
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Old 05-08-2019, 09:37 PM
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FYI Marc did confirm that there will be V4 and that there will be an announcement about it in the late fall. Chris Lites works for Modiphius and he is the person who announced he is working on it. However not sure if we have confirmation that its Modiphius who will be the new owners. Most likely a very good bet though.
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Old 05-08-2019, 09:54 PM
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However not sure if we have confirmation that its Modiphius who will be the new owners.
Hoping to have confirmation one way or the other on that by the end of the week.
Even if they say it's not them, it's still more than we know now.
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Old 05-08-2019, 10:19 PM
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I agree that competition is healthy if there is enough room for both, if not then you are taking from one to support the other, leaving not enough for either to survive. Now is this the case I do not know, but should we not at least wait to see what they are coming out with before we say I want nothing to do with it?
Understood but T2K is barely surviving as it is. Maybe Modiphius comes out with out something we like, maybe they don't and it's a T2013 debacle. Who knows? The point is that the market has come of age and we could actually produce a product we wanted to see now, regardless what Modiphius and Marc want to do. And so we're clear, I speculate that their offering is going to be slick, overproduced, hot sewage ala their current offerings and similar to what FFG has managed to spew out.

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With Traveler being under the Mongoose Publishing currently how does that rule set work (if at all) with TW2000 V1 to V2.2? If it does not (my guess but I do not know) then does it really matter that they were basically the same rule set once? Now I am not a game designer or anything like that but how difficult would it be to fix some (all?) of the cons that you listed? I do think keeping the old rules or even slightly updating them (but keeping them backwards compatible) is a good thing as it give you several sourcebooks right from the get go (maybe hard to find in Dead Tree, but available in PDF). Right now with how much thought I have put into it this would be my first choice.
I get that there's a lot of faith with the v2.2 rules but we can't really "fix" them. They're too outdated, clunky, verbose and poorly organized. And no-one today is going to suffer the level of record keeping necessary to play. Besides, they're generally rated generally poorly by the gaming public at large.

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Now it may be because I like more depth but I do not think that the crunchy systems are as disliked as some think. I do think it is the case that a fair amount of youth today have no attention span, and so do not like the crunchy system. However I assume that if they are like most of my family they barely even have the attention span to play games were everything you need to play is on the cards you play, and if that is true then those players will not be playing any RPG. So I am guessing that we might lose a few players, but I do not think it will be as many as I hear people say. So GURPS would be my second choice as my understanding is that the system has been very stable (it was a long time ago that I last played GURPS).
I'm a Phoenix Command and Rolemaster aficionado. Would I recommend these games to a new player? No way. Same with GURPS. There is a happy balance between the extremes I mentioned and Magic the Gathering.

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My first concern is that several of the companies are not well know for supporting games that are not hot sellers, so what happens if they pull support? Some (GW especially know for this) are not well balanced, how well will we be able to get around that if using there rule set? Several of the companies change their rules more frequently than I think is needed, if/when they do how does that affect us? and last concern that I have right now with this one is that some of the companies are disliked by portions of the gaming community (that does not mean they do not sell well) so how will this affect sales for a new/returning game that has no history with them? My thought right now is that this one is not a good option, but could be convinced otherwise.
I was citing examples of rules systems which could be adapted to become the next T2K, not partnerships.

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I have to admit I did not know anything about this game, so went to their web site and took a look at their forum, it may be even less active than this one. Only four posts with a date within the last year (OK, one more is at 11 months and 3 weeks) and most of those are 5 months or more. So with that level of activity how popular is the game? As for scale I have lots of 6mm (thousands), 15mm (hundreds), an 28-34mm (hundreds) and maybe it is because I do more tabletop games than skirmish games (all the skirmish games are done in the 28-34mm) so the 20mm just sounds like an odd size to me, as I know no one in my group has anything in that size. Then as it has the same cons as above makes this look like a poor choice to me.
Ambush Alley was immensely popular when it first launched, some of the people of this forum helped produce materials for it and know the designer. Osprey Publishing bought the license and now produces and distributes it as Force on Force. In either case, it's a great system which could be modified and expanded to be an RPG.

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I will admit that I have only played D&D once, but found it to be OK, would have liked more meat to my character. By that I mean it just felt like there was not enough to the character they were just print and play. One warrior did not feel different from another. I also see a huge issue with trying to do anything with Palladium Books especially if it has to do with kickstarter after they screwed over a large group of people with their Robotech Tactics game, I think anything that they are even remotely affiliated with will have issues.
Again, I'm not recommending partnership with any of these companies for rules systems, just ideas we can use to drive the design of a new rules system.

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I am not sure how this is really different than the first option? Are you saying just option 1 is modifying these rules and this is using them just as written?
I am now talking about settings we could adapt, not rules mechanics. And we can't use this one anyway because FFE owns it and licensed it Modiphius.

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I am unfimilure with this alt-timeline, it is on this forum? I am guessing it starts in 1965? If that is the case I think it could be a good supplement but think what really sets TW2000 apart is the WWIII and "you are all on you own". It could be started in 65 but if the cold war is too long ago I think 65 would be worse. Having said that I do think it would be a good supplement like Merc 2000.
Yes came from posts on this forum. He recently came back after a hiatus and starting posting again. Your note about it being a potential supplement is a good idea.

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As I have said in other posts on this forum I do not think that it is as popular as is being made out to be. My local group plays at least ten different table top war games at multiple locations, however when I asked most recently none of the players or staff know anything about Team Yankee. Now, yes maybe my location is the extreme outlier but I just have a hard time believing that we are that far out there. Also if we are going to try and do this on kickstarter BattleFront does not have the best reputation there after the Dust kickstarter that they were part of, not as bad as Palladium Books but still very far from positive. Also all the concerns I have with option three and four would apply here.
I agree these companies don't have the best rep, especially for Kickstarter. However, Team Yankee is alive and well, I assure you.

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Regardless of what time you have it start in the timeline is always going to be come irrelevant in someways. As WWIII did not happen and knock on wood will not then you are going to have to make some adjustment to history. So I think either pick a date in the not to distant past and make changes from there, or some date in the near future and make the changes there. So I guess I kind of see this as potentially part of the other options.
You're spot on here. However, the only Cold War timeline that really has any legs is the Sir General John Hackett - Red Storm Rising - Red Dawn - Team Yankee one. The rest are generally unknown outside of this forum.

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I agree that does not have the correct feel to it. In a nut shell I think that first we should at least wait for more information on version 4 before we all decide to jump ship and make our own. However if it is wrong I do think there are some viable options from good to very bad, but just my thoughts and the are worth what you paid for them.
The cost of your thoughts has a very attractive price! But I firmly believe that acting now is the best course of action.
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Old 05-09-2019, 01:15 AM
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I'l just wait for whatever region and adventure supplements come out, and covert it all to Gunmaster anyway
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Old 05-09-2019, 08:16 AM
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I'l just wait for whatever region and adventure supplements come out, and covert it all to Gunmaster anyway
Now that is a good idea
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Old 05-09-2019, 08:19 AM
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So Jason got confirmation its not Modiphius - i.e. the inference that it would be them based on Chris Lites working for them was a good guess but incorrect

So we will have to see who it is based on the posts by Chris Lites in the Twilight 2000 facebook group he is on that he is working on version 4, that it wont be like Twilight 2013 and that there will be an announcement this fall.

And Marc has confirmed a version 4 for sure. So basically back to pins and needles and see if Chris or Marc gives any more information on it in the meantime
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Old 05-09-2019, 01:19 PM
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Understood but T2K is barely surviving as it is. Maybe Modiphius comes out with out something we like, maybe they don't and it's a T2013 debacle. Who knows? The point is that the market has come of age and we could actually produce a product we wanted to see now, regardless what Modiphius and Marc want to do. And so we're clear, I speculate that their offering is going to be slick, overproduced, hot sewage ala their current offerings and similar to what FFG has managed to spew out.
I think one issue is that it does not sound like everyone wants the same thing. I have never played a Modiphius game, but know several people who love their games. Now I am not saying you are wrong as I do not know you, but I am more inclined to trust those who I do know, so with that said I would be wiling to give Modiphius the benefit of the doubt if they were to make a TW2000 game.

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I get that there's a lot of faith with the v2.2 rules but we can't really "fix" them. They're too outdated, clunky, verbose and poorly organized. And no-one today is going to suffer the level of record keeping necessary to play. Besides, they're generally rated generally poorly by the gaming public at large.
I am not sure what you mean by outdated, but clunky, verbose and poorly organized are things that I think could be fixed. As for level of record keeping I am not sure that really is the case, BattleTech is often pointed as a outdated, clunky game with way to much record keeping needed to play. However one of our players in my local area took it upon himself to get a league organized and not counting our regular BattleTech play group, he has got the largest store in the region to sign on and has about a dozen or new players. With even more who have been showing interest but not willing to step up (yet?) and buy into the game. So what I am saying is that record keeping does not seam to be the big stumbling block that some say it is.



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Ambush Alley was immensely popular when it first launched, some of the people of this forum helped produce materials for it and know the designer. Osprey Publishing bought the license and now produces and distributes it as Force on Force. In either case, it's a great system which could be modified and expanded to be an RPG.

I am not saying that it was not "immensely popular" or that it is a bad game, I have never heard of it (but there are so many games out there that is not a big surprise, and really does not mean much) but just based on the activity of their own forums it does not look like it is very popular now, with only five threads active with in the last year, now compare that to this site (from my understanding not know for being a high traffic site) where we have fourteen by my count active this month alone. So in one month almost three times as many active threads as they had in a year, that does not sound like a popular game. Now maybe it is because there rule set is so tight that there are no questions about it, or maybe it is because most of the players are offline only, I do not know.


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You're spot on here. However, the only Cold War timeline that really has any legs is the Sir General John Hackett - Red Storm Rising - Red Dawn - Team Yankee one. The rest are generally unknown outside of this forum.
As much as I loved the book Team Yankee, I would actually say that I think his Scott Dixon line might be a better way of staring the war (just take a bit of tweaking) and I think that even Sir General John Hackett - Red Storm Rising - Team Yankee are not well know outside of this forum. Yes I know you are going to say that the Game Team Yankee is the most popular game ever and all that, but as I have said it may be very popular in some areas, but it is not all over. I would kind of guess it is like Dust depending on the location doing very well, but in others it is if not outright dead on extreme life support.
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Old 05-09-2019, 02:36 PM
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Yes I know you are going to say that the Game Team Yankee is the most popular game ever and all that...
You are mis-representing what I originally wrote in order to prove some point about Team Yankee. I never stated it was the most popular and even stated that it was a small fry compared to GW. It's simply a currently popular miniatures game. What's your deal here?
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Old 05-10-2019, 12:02 AM
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You are mis-representing what I originally wrote in order to prove some point about Team Yankee. I never stated it was the most popular and even stated that it was a small fry compared to GW. It's simply a currently popular miniatures game. What's your deal here?
No deal, I was trying to lighten the mode with some hyperbole, I know you never said that it was the most popular game ever. However you keep talking about games that you think are popular, and I just do not see it. I think it is more like Dust Tactics, is it a popular game? Yes and no, depends on where you are, and who you ask. If you ask the internet it is a dead game and has been for years, however for a "dead game" it is still for sale, has its own nationals and is even getting tables at GenCon. So even though I think it is a fun and well made game it is not currently popular, even though it was at one point. Now is Team Yankee a popular game? I am guessing it is kind of the same, it is probably popular in some locations, but in others (like mine) it is dead.
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Old 05-12-2019, 09:35 PM
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I don't have any empirical evidence to back what I'm about to say, but my feeling is that for new versions of T2K in the current tabletop RPG gaming environment, most writers on new rules sets will err on the side of simplicity. The brutal truth is unless it's a labour of love, the idea is to achieve some level of profit, and if there is no profit a new system will be dead in the water, with few or no supplements coming after the initial release.

I say err on the side of simplicity because on the rools-lite to crunchy spectrum, there is an element of personal taste as well as an element of what the user can actually cope with. People who don't cope well with even basic maths and/or tricky rules concepts won't play a complicated game because they're simply not capable of it. People who are capable of it will play whatever attracts them. So complicated rules systems are going to tend to do less well in the broader TTRPG market, because as well as contending with personal tastes, their complicated nature is a genuine barrier to entry.

I have no beef with people who like cinematic, free-flowing gaming and feel that rools-lite delivers that for them. I do think it's a shame that simpler rules systems has been the trend for quite some time now in part due to the reasons I've outlined above.
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Old 05-13-2019, 10:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Targan View Post
I have no beef with people who like cinematic, free-flowing gaming and feel that rools-lite delivers that for them. I do think it's a shame that simpler rules systems has been the trend for quite some time now in part due to the reasons I've outlined above.
Agree with your post. However, there is an optimal way to rules-light a complicated (old-school) system and a not effective way. Take Command Decision, Fire & Fury and Spearhead, for example. These are good examples of old-school miniatures rules. I think an optimal ruleset that largely supplanted these (except amongst Grognards) would be Blitzkrieg/Cold War Commander and my personal favourite, Fistful of TOWs. Clearly updated thinking about how to achieve the same deterministic results, but without the cheese. If this could be done in RPG systems, and I don't see why not, it could be a winner.
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Old 05-16-2019, 07:06 PM
swaghauler swaghauler is offline
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I'l just wait for whatever region and adventure supplements come out, and covert it all to Gunmaster anyway
MASOCHIST! I've played "RulesMaster" a time or two.
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Old 05-16-2019, 09:28 PM
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Targan Targan is offline
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MASOCHIST! I've played "RulesMaster" a time or two.
Harnmaster/Gunmaster, the King of Rules Systems. Good for what ails ya
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Old 05-31-2019, 09:38 PM
swaghauler swaghauler is offline
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Harnmaster/Gunmaster, the King of Rules Systems. Good for what ails ya
I'm all for "crunch," but you're playing the "Grapenuts" of RPGs. Any more crunch and you might as well be eating glass!
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