What system will this use?

Discuss our dark fantasy adventure tabletop roleplaying game based on BioWare's computer game, Dragon Age Origins.

What system will this use?

Postby _x_ » Tue May 05, 2009 8:38 am

The game system Bioware are using in the video game, true 20, SIRFP's system, or something completely different?

Since this puppy is slated to come out this summer, it means GR have already been hard at work on this with most of the stuff already done. (in fact its probably going through the final phases before being sent for publishing amirite?)

Reveal all Pramas! :green:
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Postby pathfinderap » Tue May 05, 2009 10:25 am

I would also like to know more about the state of play on this,
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Postby Nikchick » Tue May 05, 2009 10:44 am

Chris will be popping over here in the next couple of days to post more information and we'll have regular updates between now and release but I can tell you that this is a system Chris designed from scratch to best reflect the license, just as we did with the game design on A Song of Ice and Fire.
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Postby pathfinderap » Tue May 05, 2009 11:42 am

Nikchick wrote:Chris will be popping over here in the next couple of days to post more information and we'll have regular updates between now and release but I can tell you that this is a system Chris designed from scratch to best reflect the license, just as we did with the game design on A Song of Ice and Fire.


Well you guys did an outstanding job of Ice and Fire,
so unless its something really left field, no worries then,

:D
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Postby mhensley » Tue May 05, 2009 12:01 pm

here's some possible info about the system I found in an interview with the bioware guys-

"We use a class-based system that has levels--we're staying that close to our D&D roots. You start off with three basic classes, the wizard, fighter, and rogue, just to get you started. Very quickly, you get access to advanced classes, and even within those classes you get to customize abilities, stats, and talents--you buy points, build it up, and after a short while you'll be able to pick even more advanced classes. If you want to have a fighter-type character with magic-like abilities, there'll be a route you can take for that. If you want to be a barbarian berserker, you can do that, too...there's a route for everyone so players can build their character the way they want. There's a stupid number of class abilities and special abilities...I think it's more than in any other BioWare game."
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Postby pathfinderap » Tue May 05, 2009 12:15 pm

Not big on the d20,

But I don't mind classes as long as combat is skill based, not BAB
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Postby Ogrepuppy » Tue May 05, 2009 1:07 pm

First, CONGRATS to GR for this license! I look forward to both the PC and P&P games.

Please, for the love of Azathoth, let's have you do two-weapon fighting and multiclassing (or your version of it) in such a way that is actually usable, please? (Unlike a certain dragon-sized RPG in a 4-edition dungeon. :evil: )
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Postby Pete Whalley » Tue May 05, 2009 2:11 pm

Ogrepuppy wrote:Please, for the love of Azathoth, let's have you do two-weapon fighting and multiclassing (or your version of it) in such a way that is actually usable, please? (Unlike a certain dragon-sized RPG in a 4-edition dungeon. :evil: )


So long as it's not the silly old 'two weapons means extra attacks' rubbish that we've had in the past.

That bugs the bejeezus out of me. A second weapon is for parrying and feinting, not stabbing someone another couple of times.
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Postby mhensley » Tue May 05, 2009 5:44 pm

Pete Whalley wrote:
Ogrepuppy wrote:Please, for the love of Azathoth, let's have you do two-weapon fighting and multiclassing (or your version of it) in such a way that is actually usable, please? (Unlike a certain dragon-sized RPG in a 4-edition dungeon. :evil: )


So long as it's not the silly old 'two weapons means extra attacks' rubbish that we've had in the past.

That bugs the bejeezus out of me. A second weapon is for parrying and feinting, not stabbing someone another couple of times.


like wfrp does...

A classed based game will have to do something really special to get me away from wfrp right now.
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Postby MD » Thu May 28, 2009 3:42 am

As far as I got it from '' Pramas Interview on Dragon Age RPG''

The system seems to be fairly simple.
So an ideal start for new players, as well as for all the guys that are quite a while in the hobby, but have nowadays families and quite time demanding jobs! :D

The only thing that would interest me now is, what ''abilities'' mean.
Only a few attributes for everything, the classical mix (Attributes+Skills), or basically the same approach they took for A Song of Ice and Fire ?

Anybody an idea?
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Postby 77IM » Thu May 28, 2009 8:40 am

Some info I've gleaned, mostly from the unofficial wiki:

From Pramas's interview we know that the core mechanic is 3d6+Modifier (which is not the most inspired mechanic, but is at least very conceptually simple for an introductory game). Also, the starter set will only cover levels 1-5 (which I think is pretty nice, assuming the next set, levels 6-10, comes out reasonably quickly).

It will feature the same 3 classes as the game: warrior, rogue, and mage. In the video game, you can get a specialization at around level 7, which is like a prestige class/paragon path, a sort of sub-class. Presumably, these would be a major focus of the second RPG set (levels 6-10)?

The video game will feature 6 attributes: Strength, Cunning, Magic, Constitution, Dexterity, Willpower. The first three are closely linked to the three classes (Strength for warriors, Cunning for rogues, Magic for mages). The second three seem more general-purpose, and I speculate more defensive. Attributes start at 10, plus race and class bonus, plus 5 points to distribute at character creation, plus 3 per level up. I'm not sure how much of this will be preserved in the RPG.

There are also skills (available to everyone) and talents (exclusive to warriors and rogues) and spells (exclusive to mages). They all work the same way: They are either passive (always on), sustained (you turn it on and off), or activated (you use it as an action). From the list on the wiki, skills tend to be passive (or activated, with passive upgrades); spells tend to be activated (a few are sustained); and talents are a mix. Skills/talents/spells don't seem to have levels, but are binary, like feats (you either have it or you don't). However, some have prerequsites, for example each skill has an "Improved," "Expert," and "Master" level that you can get after getting the basic skill. (I think they should have called them "Basic," "Expert," "Companion," and "Master." :wink:) I have no idea how any of this will translate to the RPG. Pramas that spells will use magic points/mana, but I haven't heard about talents and whether they use any sort of points.

In the video game the computer can perform very elaborate and precise calculations. So a mechanic like "Each point of Strength adds 2.5% to damage with melee weapons, or 3.5% on a two-handed weapon" might be great for game balance in the video game but would not work at all in the PnP RPG. So, it's really hard to know what the core mechanic might be like based on info about the video game: 3d6+Modifier, where +Modifier might include attribute, some derivative of attribute (ala D&D), level, skill/talent/spell bonus, equipment bonus, class bonus, who knows.

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Postby Zapp » Thu May 28, 2009 10:40 am

mhensley wrote:A classed based game will have to do something really special to get me away from wfrp right now.

Based on the little I've garnered Dragon Age seems to be a much more "classic fantasy" game - pitching the game much more as a D&D competitor than a WFRP one.

At least, that's my hope. Cannibalizing on the meager non-D&D sales (i.e. "gritty fantasy") doesn't bode well (for either DA or WFRP)...
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Postby Valyar » Sun May 31, 2009 2:39 am

I am more bothered by the editing. If the book is full with errors and mistakes like ASIFR I will skip it until there is second printing. I really don't like to buy a half baked product and half year later to buy it again, just because the original is hard to use in game session.
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Postby MrJones » Sun Aug 09, 2009 1:23 am

Ditto. Errata is a massive turn off for me. I can put up with some, it's inevitable, but once you go past the threshold, that's sloppy.

Also, why 3d6+mods for task resolution? Bell curve? I'd go with 2d10. Simpler, quicker.
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Postby 77IM » Sun Aug 09, 2009 2:28 pm

My guess (and this is pure* speculation) is that, because DA is an "introductory" game, they wanted to keep things familiar and straightforward for new players. Everybody has seen a d6 and knows how to roll them and add them up.

Adding modifiers afterwards is also a pretty simple concept (higher = better). And due to the distribution of 3d6, every little +1 matters a lot -- so you probably won't need to be adding +17, more like +3 (which is a faster bit of arithmetic to perform).

Everyone has a few six-siders laying around the house so acquiring dice is not a barrier to entry. If the box-set includes dice, it's also possible that d6s are cheaper to produce than other dice, because of the demand.

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Postby Spence » Sun Oct 11, 2009 2:06 pm

Is there a possibility of a source-book/supplement written to run the setting using Warriors & Warlocks?
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Postby Ryngard » Wed Oct 14, 2009 12:36 pm

Highly doubtful. This game is made for the world and I don't see them making a product to use a different game in this world... shouldn't be too hard to do yourself though... the world is just backdrop fluff.
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Guffaw

Postby jasko » Wed Oct 14, 2009 8:28 pm

"...the world is just backdrop fluff"


I take it you've never created a campaign world.
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Postby Ryngard » Thu Oct 15, 2009 4:12 am

Jasko,

I've been DMing/GMing since 1988. I've created campaigns that lasted more than 8-9 years at a clip and spanned multiple versions of their game (and in the case of our Star Wars campaign, we even moved from the official SW game to a few other games). I've run three custom settings, all different feels, at the same time (back when we gamed that much).

I've created from scratch five distinct campaign worlds, complete with history, religion, cutom races, etc and any of them can be used as a setting for any fantasy RPG.

My statement was NOT to down settings, it was to highlight the fact that the SETTING is "fluff" (that is the real term as opposed to "mechanics" which is what the game (D&D, GURPS, etc) provides).

Any DM worth his or her salt can easily take Dragon Age and convert D&D 4e (or 3e or 2e, etc) to work there. The biggest obstacle is to remember that it is the STORY and not the strict adherance to a video game stat or spell that counts.
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Postby jasko » Thu Oct 15, 2009 3:51 pm

You started in 1988? Johnny come lately! Why, I remember when we had to crayon in the numbers on our dice! :)

A little background is in order: I'm a writer and aspiring game designer who's currently in the throes of creating multiple settings for his new system. And it seemed to me like you were flippantly dismissive of the effort required to create an original, expansive, internally self-consistent game world.

Obviously, that wasn't the case. We can now return to our regularly scheduled internet.
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Postby Ryngard » Fri Oct 16, 2009 7:41 pm

Heh, I had a set of those dice too! :)

Yeah, total misunderstanding methinks. I was just saying that you didn't need a supplement to use Thedas in another game.

:)
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Postby Spence » Fri Oct 16, 2009 7:54 pm

Ryngard wrote:Highly doubtful. This game is made for the world and I don't see them making a product to use a different game in this world... shouldn't be too hard to do yourself though... the world is just backdrop fluff.


We look at it different I guess. For me the most time consuming part of a campaign is the tedious and mind numbing write ups versus the easy part, story and background.

And yes I am an old timer and have been actively GMing since D&D 1st ed (or Chainmail if you consider that an RPG :wink: ).

Anyway, converting a bestiary, NPC's and/or adapting a magic system is the part I hate. Keeping the story is the easy part. Heck a PDF product that jus has a straight conversion of stats without any of the 'fluff' as you put it, would be best for me.

Of course YMMV...
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Postby miburo530 » Wed Oct 21, 2009 11:58 am

Part of the funnest parts for me is creating interesting adventures and tying in character backstories to the the pre-existing world.
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Postby Iltsuger » Tue Nov 10, 2009 6:14 am

77IM, what wiki page did you get that information from?
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Postby 77IM » Wed Nov 11, 2009 7:48 am

http://dragonage.wikia.com/wiki/Dragon_Age_Wiki

However, now that the video game is released, I (and probably half the people on this forum) can answer mechanics questions straight from the source. (As for story questions... I am only level 6 and in Lothering, so I'm not sure I even know enough to post spoilers!)

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