Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Give It Another Go

Here we are again, trying the blogthing a second time, and also revisiting 7th-plus edition Tunnels & Trolls. After having played 5th edition since 1983, I knew the system inside and out, knew how to balance it the way I wanted to play it, and knew the setting (my take on Trollworld) intimately as well. When 7e came out I eagerly bought my copy, rounded up a group of eager but inexperienced players, developed a new setting (based off of the Lejentia material) and went about starting a fresh campaign after more than 20 years in the previous one!

We started to play, and everyone enjoyed the ruleset and the setting...at first. Soon, difficulties set in...ah, what a glorious goatscrew it became. Part of the problem was the setting - Lejentia is awesome, and has great stuff...for low level and high level. But at mid-level there isn't much and filling in all of the gaps myself was too burdensome. The other issue, and more what I am concerned about in this blog, was the rules for 7e. Your taste may vary, but to me the rules were broken, and that became obvious very quickly. First level SR for a Ranger to hit any target? Um, no. Ditto on Leaders' ability to influence people. 100x the attribute for leveling purposes? Way too slow, but at the same time, Talents became super-inflated very quickly and characters were easily able to make pretty much any SR. To what I was used to in 5e, things were out of sync with each other and the balance was quickly lost. I pulled the plug on that campaign after about 6 months and went back to a modified version of 5e (and Trollworld), with the best bits of 7e added as house rules - Talents (without inflation), new types, new spells and equipment, a different way to handle magic resistance. It has all been working fine for the past year or two now.

However, with 7.5 resolving some of my issues, and what I feel now is a better understanding of the differences between editions, I've been wondering what another crack at it might be like. Now that school is starting back up, and a regular routine will be re-established, I want to start a new campaign for my sons on Friday nights. I think that 7.5 will fit the approach I want to take with the setting and main dungeon I am building. This will be an experiment to see if I can find the balance I want using 7.5. I plan to blog about our sessions and any gaming related issues that arise.