Brewing a System

Well, after an initial playtest over spring break.  I’ve realized that the spell/potion system may be a little too vague, but overall the impression from the playtesters was a positive one.  One instance of feedback I’ve received was to develop a set of guidelines for spell/potion use, so the GM doesn’t have to resort to “Hand of God” tactics in order to manage their player’s creations.  This may take some effort considering there is 64 different symbols, and symbols may be chained up to a length of five to create spells/potion effects (In total 64 * 64 * 64 * 64 * 64 = 1,073,741,824 base combinations, and not counting the different effects one may come with for the same symbol….).

As a result I’m thinking I may go with some form of creative commons license as I get further along with the progression of the system.  That way players may create their own homebrew spells/potions, and share them equally.

Some of the symbol use guidelines;

Damage – lethality is equal to the intelligence of the casting/creating character + their esoteric lore/alchemy skill. Wound inflicted is a light wound for skill up to apprentice level, major wound for journeyman, and grievous wound for master.

Healing – heals one check box per esoteric lore/alchemy skill.

Active Duration Effects – lasts 5 minutes per skill level.

Passive Duration Effects – lasts 1 hour per skill level.

And a sample spell;

Necrotic Orb (Symbols used; Dark, Body) – Temporary weakens the target character upon being hit/touched by the orb (marksmanship or pugilism skill check required). Reduces Fortitude by points equal to the caster’s Esoteric Lore skill, and the duration is equal in minutes to the Esoteric Lore skill. Hits from multiple orbs may kill a target if their fortitude hits 0 or lower. Stat Check of Fortitude is allowed to prevent effect. Lethality is equal to Intellect + Esoteric Lore of the caster. (Reagents Required – A glass orb at least 1 inch (2 cm) in diameter, Human Ashes, and Decayed Flesh). Number of orbs that can made from one casting is equal to Esoteric Lore skill +1. Morality Effect; -1 for every orb created.

So It Begins….

Well, this is another step towards the path of a game developer, and hopefully not the last.  I’ve been working on game variants now for the past five years, and this is the one of the first steps I’ve taken towards publicity of them.  The main game that I’ve been working on has the working title “Decayed Laurels”, and as of last week I’ve decided to take a break from it for awhile so I can regain perspective.


Having stated that, I’ve started on a new game the past week which is tentatively titled “Alchemy”.  It is an RPG system that is based upon the real world alchemy with its abstract symbols, and varied meanings.  The spell/potion system is going to be vague, and players have to derive meanings/effects from the symbols their characters learn in order to create spells to cast and potions to create.  More information will be coming regarding this system as it progresses.