I recently got my hands on Victoriana 3rd edition. It's got a lot to recommend it to me as an inveterate lover of steampunk and gaslamp fantasy; but also a lot that runs absolutely contrary to my ethos as a dyed-in-the-wool grognard of the old-school, rulings-not-rules persuasion.
Still, it's much easier to trim cruft and ignore what I don't need than it would be to build up on a lighter system. And V3e's steampunk engineering and magic systems are absolutely perfect for the kinds of settings I like to run in.
So I just wanted to swing by and throw up this cute little number: my down-home, southern-fried, homebrew character sheet for a rules-lite variation on the game that I hope to be playtesting soon. It takes some of those Queensberry rules up at the top of the forum and cranks the simplicity dial up to eleven. (I don't have a cute name for my rules yet. If I did, it'd probably be some sort of French Revolution reference. Something to do with the Jacobins or Robespierre or the Committee for Public Safety. Or maybe the Napoleonic Code. That last idea at least has old-school war-gaming connotations in its favor.)
But the real truth is, it's not the quality of "rules-lightness" that makes an RPG "old-school"—not by a long shot. No, it's how you motivate the players. The real sine qua non for a grognard's campaign is ensuring that experience points are tied to something concrete in the game world. In my case, I'll be implementing a good ol'-fashioned rule for "Murderhoboin' and Sandboxin' Around": for every £25 worth of treasure that the intrepid heroes wantonly dissipate to no discernible material advantage, they earn 1 XP. That's how a grognard referee rolls.
A world of adventure in an age of sorcery and steam. Join the fight against the enemies of Queen and Empire. Battle ancient evils, uncover sinister plots, and root out predators stalking the cobble-stoned streets. Your tools are arcane magics, steam-driven marvels, and a stiff upper lip. Learn more at our website: http://www.cubicle7.co.uk/our-games/victoriana/
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