I’ve been hard at work on Block, Dodge, Parry; a classless, levelless fantasy adventure RPG, which combines many of the ideas I’ve written about on this blog into one coherent system. Besides bundling those ideas, it expands upon them, making for a toolkit of procedures that hopefully spark your imagination. But… what’s actually in it?
Image Credit: A remix of the Block, Dodge, Parry cover art by Bertdrawsstuff
I aim for BDP to be like an Advanced Edition of Yochai Gal’s Cairn. As such, it includes many parts of base Cairn, so that it can be played as a standalone experience.
It currently contains, in no particular order:
- Time, Gear & Skill; a system for ‘skill checks’ without requiring a whole list of skills, that rewards the character’s background and preparation.
- Fantasy Species; a simple framework to play as non-humans with special properties.
- Extended rest rules, rewarding more comfortable places of rest with more rejuvenation.
- Social Conflict; an alternative to physical combat, allowing for tense negotiations. It straddles the line between “complete abstraction” and “having the players actually argue with the Warden” by using dice rolls as prompts.
- Blocking, Dodging & Parrying, the namesake of the system, giving players more tactical options during combat while maintaining its overall flow and simplicity.
- Location-based critical damage; an optional system to add a bit of impact to your blows.
- Weapons; wherein each weapon can deal one of three types of damage, combined with fast, balanced, and heavy attacks and different special properties, which characters master by using.
- Careers: 16 careers, including common knowledge (things any person of that career would know)
- Skills: 97 skills, which give you tangible new options during play. These skills can be picked at character creation, or learned along your travels.
- Magic; a free-form magic system inspired by GLOG, allowing you to freely sculpt energy, hinder opponents or alter reality. To inspire the free-form system, 12 common magic effects are expanded upon, and the offensive magic section has more than 15 tags to start with.
- Miracles; divine magic allowing you to banish your foes or aid allies. Compose your own Higher Power using one of the 85 domains, and dedicate your actions to your Higher Power to receive healing and bonuses.
The cover art is already done, and the image of this post is but a preview.
I hope to finish up writing and editing soon, and to have the full digital release on itch.io before 2023!