Why Conan

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Epemitreus
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Why Conan

Postby Epemitreus » Wed Jun 04, 2008 2:40 am

Hey Everyone, as of now I am completely tired of 1st,2nd and third editions of dungeons and dragons in fact i am completely bored with them . So i'm looking for a new game for my group and I to play. I had a few questions about the game system for Conan. What kind of classes does it have(If any) and what is the general gamesystem like? If any you have played Dungeons and dragons before how is it better? Thanks for your Help.
Ichabod
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Postby Ichabod » Wed Jun 04, 2008 4:14 am

I have a rather dim view of the class balance, not that D&D is any better, so before I go off on that, I should address your other questions.

Conan has the mechanics of D&D with all of the stuff relating to magic ripped out and replaced with a far more restrictive and flavorful spellcasting system and with virtually none of the toys (i.e. magic items). The damage is ratcheted up and the threshold for massive damage is only 20 hit points in one shot to where combat can be brutal. Natural healing is relatively quick because magical healing is scarce. High level characters can still be taken out by low because of things like these. Skills [should] matter far more than in D&D, where the latter can have every problem solved with magic.

In other words, where D&D is a videogame, Conan captures some elements of one of the major fantasy fiction genres - sword and sorcery.

Better depends upon what you want. I vastly prefer Conan because D&D is just silly to me with its endless nonhuman races, reliance on magical equipment, reliance on spells to solve problems, no internal logic to the typical world, goofy mix of religions, etc. D&D is just a really bad system for capturing the nature of almost all of the fantasy I've read in my life.

I like that attributes go up quicker in Conan, that skills matter, that the various peoples of the world are something you can relate to since they mirror historical tribes of humans.

On the other hand, Conan is a low magic, close to real world, more horroresque game that may not handle the sort of fantasy or sort of gaming experience that one might want to play. D&D is the more general fantasy game, though it lends itself to its own genre of fantasy that has little resemblance to most fantasy fiction. Conan is a variant that tries to reflect a particular genre of fantasy fiction.

Classes:

Barbarian

Borderer [ranger]

Noble

Nomad

Pirate

Scholar [class that lends itself to playing a magic-user]

Soldier

Temptress

Thief

Not much in the way of prestige classes and the ones that exist are often undesirable to a PC. Multiclassing is easy. In my view, only barbarian, scholar, and thief are worth playing as a PC. Most of the others aren't unplayable, just so clearly suboptimal without clear side benefits.

Borderer and nomad suffer from being horribly outclassed by barbarian who is virtually strictly better at every level. As NPC classes, they might be worth it as their narrow abilities can be better exploited.

Noble and Temptress - the social classes - both have a problem in that their specials are too situational. The noble, in particular, gets shafted mechanically. You might want to have one with the party, but they are better as NPCs. I really can't see the desirability in playing a noble as it has so little going on and some of what it has going on is purely supportive to where it would bore me. If the game were rewritten, I would eliminate it and have nobility be feat-based or something, which would solve another problem, namely that the noble often gets a weird mix of abilities to where it neither captures the war leader nor the dilettante but some odd mix of the two.

Pirate has some decent stuff, but it's basically, mechanically, a cross between a barbarian and a thief. It has some internal synergy problems with how it wants to fight that a barbarian/thief wouldn't.

Soldier I could only see in a campaign (or adventure) where all you ever did is fight. Maybe an 18 INT soldier isn't unplayable in a more diverse campaign, but there's just no point when you could play a barbarian instead. I'm just amazed that other people find this a playable class. Either we use skills way more often or there are lots of people out there who just care about combat.

I sum it up with: If you want to play a fighter, play a barbarian. If you want to do magic, play a scholar. If you want to do other stuff, play a thief.
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Postby Aholibamah » Wed Jun 04, 2008 7:21 am

The one area where nobles are suitable characters is a more intrigue based game. As for soldiers, I've run purely military type campaigns. Many of the points you make are valid though. It's kind of like playing Elric and choosing to play a sailor from the Purple Towns instead of a Melnibonean Sorceror. Ultimately though some people want a pure roleplaying experience and fair enough for them.

There is no perfect system but if you like this genre then Conan is fun; be prepared to make a few of your own house rules.
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Postby Sting52jb » Wed Jun 04, 2008 8:27 am

If you are disappointed with D&D because of Game mechanics, I wouldn't suggest going to Conan because it basically uses the same mechanics with some changes, it is essentially a d20 game.

If you are looking for a new world to game in with low magic, and virtually no other races but Humans then Conan might be what you are looking for. I enjoy both systems, and have taken elements from both for my own world.

other than that Conan is a great system, except i don't like how they handle magic, I still think it is to open for to many people to use, as in the Conan stories it seems there are only a very few magic users and most are all part of some cult or sect, that practices magic.
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Postby Clovenhoof » Wed Jun 04, 2008 9:17 am

Sting52jb wrote:If you are disappointed with D&D because of Game mechanics, I wouldn't suggest going to Conan because it basically uses the same mechanics with some changes, it is essentially a d20 game.
Well, once upon a time I tried to houserule D&D to a more manageable magic level, but all the fiddling didn't do a lot of good. I switched to Conan because I was tired of D&D and lo, the Conan system fixes (almost) everything I dislike about D&D. See Ichabod's post - I can only repeat the sections about magic spells and items especially.
Still, the system isn't perfect and a few houserules are useful. In my group, the total houserules are less than 2 normal letter pages in big font.

My latest discovery, for instance, was that the class-based Defense progressions are too stingy. Again, a simple houserule that bumps up each and every Defense progression by one step (e.g. 1/2 level becomes 3/4 level) should solve the problem, and makes playing Borderers or Nomads more worthwhile.

Another word about class balance; what makes the Barbarian so good is that he is the ultimate generalist. He can fight anywhere, with any weapon (and if it's a broken chair) with the same efficiency and has the skills to survive on his own. Borderer, Nomad abilities are way more situational (tied to Terrain type and/or being mounted), whereas the Soldier, as Ichabod said, can only fight and sucks at skills.
Pirates aren't half bad however; it's true they are like a Barb-Thief multi but get their benefits without level delays that a multiclass would suffer.
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Postby Hervé » Wed Jun 04, 2008 12:27 pm

Yes, barbarians are pretty powerful in the Conan RPG. But what did you expect from a Conan game? :wink:
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Postby Clovenhoof » Wed Jun 04, 2008 12:34 pm

By the way, if you have a more profound dislike to the D20 concept, you may be better off with an altogether different system, like Savage Worlds. One nice thing about the Conan system is that it incorporates many moves taken directly from the stories, like Bite Sword, Pantherish Twist and of course magic spells like Draw Forth the Heart, just to name a few of many examples.
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Postby Hervé » Wed Jun 04, 2008 1:35 pm

Even if I also have myself a "profound dislike to the D20 concept", I have to agree with Clovenhoof. A great deal of research has been done for the game to try to catch the essence of the Conan stories (races, creatures, magic, special rules and so on). That's why I'm curently using this system, even if I find the D20 monolithic, unrealistic, heavy, complicated and sometimes totally stupid.
I guess you can't have everything...
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Sting52jb
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Postby Sting52jb » Wed Jun 04, 2008 5:14 pm

I game in the Conan world and find it quiet enjoyable, I haven't used too many of the different classes, just Barbarians, Borders, and Pirates. I only allow Magic Users as a NPC class in my campaign.

For a more Magic filled world I game in a World of my own design Which has totaly eliminated Magical Items, besides a very few that were created by the gods during their war, which has made the games more enjoyable.
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Postby Der Rote Baron » Wed Jun 04, 2008 6:57 pm

My PC-group consists of a Noble/ Soldier, a Borderer, a Soldier, a Nomad/ Soldier and a Pirate/ Thief -and sometimes a Barbarian.

I can't say that any of them is outclassed by any of the others. In fact in a one-on-one-fight the Pirate/ Thief is going to make mince-meat out of any of the others: Improved Feint, Finesse Attack and a high Bluff plus Zingarian backgroudn and Sneak Attack will force any of the Save vs. Massive Damage in thefisrt round of Combat!

On the other hand you can see that my group really likes the combat abilities of the Soldier Class - and the Pirate/ Thief is very vulnerable to damage (no armor).

I think that the classes are pretty well-balanced. No experience yet with the Temptress and the Scholar as a pc, though.
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Postby Malcadon » Wed Jun 04, 2008 11:06 pm

I think most of us gone into the Conan game because of a general dislike for how D&D, as a fantasy, as gotten (that, and Howard's yarns kicks ass!). How can anyone capture the feel of a Heroic Fantasy when fighters rely so heavily on magical toys, spell casters can blasts hordes with a mighty fireball, and Clerics who just piss out healing!

Mind you, I'm still a fan of 1e AD&D, but at least you can tone down the magic, and alter the game just so slightly to make it feel like S&S. You cant do that with 3e D&D! The rules are meshed into itself, that just removing Alignment throw everything into chaos! One of the thing I dislike about d20 is that it is bulky and restrictive. I like to play with systems that are fairly light. When I play D&D, I use simplified versions of D20 (much like Pathfinder), then I use much of the Conan RPG rules, and I just make up my own worlds (often throwing in a good number of AD&D elements in to the fold). In my games, you can still find Magic Items, but they are not just rare and dangerous, they usually have a wide range of powers (and side-effects), and a mind of their own! Encounters are in keeping with Conan - human encounters are vary common, with the occasional encounter with an otherworldly creature. I also like to look though the old Deities & Demigods (note that I count the Cthulhu, Melniboné, and Hyborian Age mythos as apart of the selection, as they were dropped do to copyrights) book to look for Gods and Demon Lords to full my worlds. When I do use Humanoid races, they are typically rare or unplayable. An Elf for example, play more like a Nymph then a Tolkien Elf, and gains Druid abilities as they advance in what level they are advancing in (they need twice the amount of EXP to gain levels). As for the Conan rules, it has more of what I like in a fantasy. I hate Paladins! D&D Rangers are gay! Temptresses are way better them Brads. Allegiance, Reputation, and Honour is way better then Alignment. I love the Dodge/Parry Defense system (you become to dependent on heavy and magic armor without it). The sorcery is really cool. And most of all, the way the Conan book tells players how they can take all that retarded sh!t Wiz-bros passes off as fantasy, blow it out your ass!

Oh, if you are going to use the Sorcery system, using the Savant: Variant Scholar class & Sorcery rules is the best way to go!
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Postby Epemitreus » Fri Jun 06, 2008 2:17 am

Thanks for the replies Guys. I definitely think about picking up conan when I get a chance.
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Postby afro-slav » Sun Jun 08, 2008 5:54 am

I just checked out Dnd 4.0 and it makes me love Conan all the more.
First let me state that I use Conan as a generic rpg game vs running "Conan"
per se.

I love that there are HUMANS!!!!! There are no Eldarin, Elves, Dragonkin, Halfings, Teifliengs, Dwarves, etc...

Magic is DANGEROUS

It is a LOW MAGIC world. It is brains and brawl not game breaking spells that rule the day.

Its seems that 4.0 DnD is a tabletop video game.

Afro-slav
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Postby afro-slav » Sun Jun 08, 2008 6:11 am

I wish to thank those who all responded before I posted. I have now just read your reviews which were all better articulated far better than my quick mental flatulence that was posted above.

Regards,

Afro-slav
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Postby BARDOBARBAROS » Thu Jun 12, 2008 3:22 pm

afro-slav wrote:I just checked out Dnd 4.0 and it makes me love Conan all the more.
First let me state that I use Conan as a generic rpg game vs running "Conan"
per se.

I love that there are HUMANS!!!!! There are no Eldarin, Elves, Dragonkin, Halfings, Teifliengs, Dwarves, etc...

Magic is DANGEROUS

It is a LOW MAGIC world. It is brains and brawl not game breaking spells that rule the day.

Its seems that 4.0 DnD is a tabletop video game.

Afro-slav
That's the way i feel too right now
BARDOBARBAROS DOES NOT KILL.
HE DECAPITATES!!!
Barbarossa Rotbart
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Postby Barbarossa Rotbart » Thu Jun 12, 2008 5:21 pm

D&D has several big problems:
- unrealistic armour rules
- many too many monsters
- too great reliance on magic (especially for defense)
- multi-classing is too restricting
- skills included but not really supported
- classes are either combat or magic oriented

(The 4th edition makes most of those problems worse and makes all classes equal in combat.)

Conan is much better because:
- there is a difference between parrying and dodging
- Armour only decreases damage and ist therefore optional
- limited list of monsters
- low magic (and magic is not really needed)
- nearly no limits in multi-classing
- skills are much better supported
- broader classes roles
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Postby Malcadon » Thu Jun 12, 2008 6:26 pm

You forgot something!

3e & 4e D&D has several big problems:
- unrealistic armour rules
- many too many monsters
- too great reliance on magic (especially for defense)
- multi-classing is too restricting
- skills included but not really supported
- classes are either combat or magic oriented
- has female genitalia, but is still a male
- is gay without being a lesbian or homosexual
- is sponsored by Tampax
- gives off sweet, perfummy sent
- cant even level the dame table right :?

Conan is much better because:
- there is a difference between parrying and dodging
- Armour only decreases damage and ist therefore optional
- limited list of monsters
- low magic (and magic is not really needed)
- nearly no limits in multi-classing
- skills are much better supported
- broader classes roles
- has really big male genitalia
- as tick, bushy chest hair
- gives off a pungent locker room smell
- can kick Chuck Norris's ass, and throw him to the conner to pimp is ass :twisted:

Am I missing anything? :wink:
Barbarossa Rotbart
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Postby Barbarossa Rotbart » Thu Jun 12, 2008 6:30 pm

@Malcadon:
Okay, I should have written Conan RPG instead of just Conan or you would not have added this ******.
Malcadon
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Postby Malcadon » Thu Jun 12, 2008 7:02 pm

Barbarossa Rotbart wrote:@Malcadon:
Okay, I should have written Conan RPG instead of just Conan or you would not have added this ******.
No, I was still talking about the RPG. And what I sad about the games are vary much true!
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Postby Barbarossa Rotbart » Thu Jun 12, 2008 7:28 pm

Malcadon wrote:
Barbarossa Rotbart wrote:@Malcadon:
Okay, I should have written Conan RPG instead of just Conan or you would not have added this ******.
No, I was still talking about the RPG. And what I sad about the games are vary much true!
:roll:

This
Malcadon wrote: 3e & 4e D&D has several big problems:
...
- has female genitalia, but is still a male
- is gay without being a lesbian or homosexual
- is sponsored by Tampax
- gives off sweet, perfummy sent
- cant even level the dame table right :?
and this
Malcadon wrote: Conan is much better because:
...
- has really big male genitalia
- as tick, bushy chest hair
- gives off a pungent locker room smell
- can kick Chuck Norris's ass, and throw him to the conner to pimp is ass :twisted:
are really no features of roleplaying games, but complete and utter nonsense!

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