04 April, 2018
#AprilTTRPGMaker 3: How did you start creating TTRPGs?
"Hey, I'm picking and choosing the bits I like from different games anyway... why not just write down my favpurite bits from different games, stick them together and then I'll have the perfect system for my style of play"
It wasn't that easy.
I keep most of my design notebooks, and this post is running late because I wanted to take a photo of some of my earliest ones... these have got to be 25+ years old. The very first game design I came up with, I no longer have. A friend in high school borrowed it, ran his own campaigns with it, then we lost contact with one another as our post-high-school lives moved in different directions.
The basics involved rolling 2d6 (plus attribute+skill) compared to a difficulty (6 easy, 9 average, 12 hard, 15 extremely hard). Attributes were rated from 0 to 3 (0 bad, 1 average, 2 good, 3 awesome!!), skills were rated the same way. I remember there being 10 attributes: 5 were internal (charisma, intelligence, luck, memory, wisdom), 5 were external (beauty, endurance, reflexes, speed, strength). Skills were all sorts of things with hundreds of them, but they were linked to specific occupations. Occupations were divided into groups such as adventurer, warrior, religious, psionic, and magical. Hit points were based on endurance score and a multiplier determined by the character's race. Races also provided a base number of free skills that a character could choose at generation, a range of attribute modifiers, a couple of quirky abilities, and possibly some kind of limitation on starting occupation.
I remember playing once or twice with this system, but my friend ran it far more. We were going to work together to make it awesome...but we didn't see each other for over a decade (I actually ran into him on my third buck's night, on the evening before my wedding...but that's another much longer story).