True20 Frequently Asked Questions
What is the origin of the True20 system?
Several years ago Green Ronin began working on a project called Blue Rose. The idea was to create a roleplaying game that would appeal to readers of Romantic Fantasy fiction. The existing d20 ruleset wasn't right for the genre, so the goal was to create a stripped down version that'd be easier to run and play and more attractive to new roleplayers. After a couple of false starts, Steve Kenson became the Blue Rose developer and put together a system that was right for the game. When the PDF of Blue Rose was released in January, the new system got a lot of attention. So much so that Green Ronin President Chris Pramas decided to name the game system for the print version of Blue Rose, so it'd be easy to indicate compatibility with future products that used the same system. He dubbed it the True20 System, since you only need one 20-sided die to play. Although Green Ronin already had plans for future True20 games, it was soon decided to release the rules on their on as well. This is how True20 Adventure Roleplaying came about in its current form.
What material from Blue Rose is in True20 Adventure Roleplaying?
The majority of the game system material from Blue Rose can be found in the True20 Adventure Roleplaying PDF. The notable exceptions are any material strongly tied to the Blue Rose setting of Aldea, including: Backgrounds, Heroic Paths, Heroic Calling, Light and Shadow Natures (although True20 has something similar called Virtues and Vices), Corruption, much of the Bestiary, and, of course, the actual setting material and information on Narrating romantic fantasy games.
In the setting search submissions, what sort of mix of mechanics and background are you looking for?
One thing we want to see is clever adaptations of the rules for specific settings, so certainly at least some of the 15,000 words of each submission should be dedicated to mechanics. While there are no hard and fast rules, such material should probably make up 20% to 50% of submission.
Would it be appropriate to include Heroic Callings and Backgrounds like those in Blue Rose in setting search submissions?
Yes, certainly. They are both tools that can help you customize the rules for your setting.
Are you planning a program like M&M Superlink for the True20 System?
Not in the short term. This is for several reasons.
First, use of the True20 logo is one of the key benefits that winners of the setting search receive. If we just start giving that away right now, it takes some of the wind out of the sales of the contest.
Second, the setting search itself was conceived as an alternative to a M&M Superlink type of program and we want to see how it works out. M&M Superlink has been a successful program, but it hasn't all been smooth sailing. It takes up a fair amount of staff time to run all the approvals and we weren't keen to pile more work onto the shoulders of our already overburdened developers with another program. Also, we've received consumer complaints about the quality of some Superlink products. While we can reasonable argue that we are not responsible for the quality of another company's products, we do want to be careful that our programs do not reflect poorly on us.
The setting search is designed so that True20 can gain a group of quality supporting publishers. We encourage interested publishers to participate in the setting contest if they want to develop True20 material.
OK, then can other publishers license True20 directly from Green Ronin?
As we've said, we'd prefer that interested publishers get involved in the setting search. However, publishers that are serious enough to want to enter a formal, royalty-based licensing agreement can contact us if they want to enter negotiations.
Why were the Backgrounds from Blue Rose left out of True20? [Added June 24, 2005]
Because the Backgrounds were setting-specific and True20 is more general. However, we do have plans to address adding Backgrounds to True20 for those who want to use them.