oops..The Direction Lone Wolf is going

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wayward_sage
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oops..The Direction Lone Wolf is going

Postby wayward_sage » Sat Nov 20, 2004 7:02 pm

Okay i gotta chime in here for a bit,

I'm a long time fan of Lone Wolf. While I love the new revitalization of the game, i'm a little concerned with the direction its going in. All of the supliment books just keep churning out classes. Where are the descriptions of different places of magnamund? Game Plot ideas? Interesting cities, cults, enemies, plots. Maps!! Maps were a huge thing in the original lone wolf. I'd love to see a whole book on full color, (or heck the old black and white ones we got in the original game books in the US) I'd love to see very detailed maps of different regions, important countries and even cities.

Lone Wolf is not just more and more unique classes. It's about the titanic struggle between good and evil. But as a DM i need more source material! I need the meat of an RPG not just more bones.

I see the release shedule should focus on the following in this order:

1. Regional Sourcebooks (give us ideas of places to place new campaigns! And places to see, things to do!)

2. Monster Manual- This is very needed. Good illustrations on ever monster, monster templates, and a hefty serviing of what makes monsters unique in magnamund.

3. Book of Maps- A manual of loose, or binded maps that cover all of northern and southern Magnamund. I'd love to see this because Maps were the soul of the original game.

4. Adventures, Class Sourcebooks- This would be more apropriate down the line when we are able to build our campaigns. Most DM's make their own adventures. I'd actually like to see a book that is exclusively on the Kai Monks! A full tome about their history, culture, rituals, powers and important NPC's in the world at this time. Who's the leader of the Kai right now?! And i'd like to see at least a dozen high level or unique Kai monks stats with little bios about them. We have that on the darklords. Now how bout the other side?

Tell me what you think guys,

sunwolf
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Re: oops..The Direction Lone Wolf is going

Postby Sabbak » Sat Nov 20, 2004 8:22 pm

First of all I must tell that I'm very found of the Lone Wolf RpG and I think the work that has been done by August on the supplements is tremendous! The information and the style: everything is great (and the illustrations? er... that's another story...).

That said... I must confess I agree 80% with you, Sunwolf.
wayward_sage wrote:Where are the descriptions of different places of magnamund? Game Plot ideas? Interesting cities, cults, enemies, plots.
That's it! As a GM, what I need is exactly what you have said. Classes and rules and super-over-huge-disciplines of grand-over-super-upper-magnakai level are okay but I can always built something myself.
It's technical stuff... a bit boring...
wayward_sage wrote:Maps!! Maps were a huge thing in the original lone wolf.
Hehehe! :D
I really LOVE maps! And I have made city maps of Holmgard, Port Bax, Toran, and so on...
Come on towerofthesun.com and check out my map of Holmgard and the Travelguide of the Lastlands! :wink:
wayward_sage wrote: 1. Regional Sourcebooks (give us ideas of places to place new campaigns! And places to see, things to do!)
Yes! I would like to see this kind of supplements!
wayward_sage wrote: 2. Monster Manual- This is very needed. Good illustrations on ever monster, monster templates, and a hefty serviing of what makes monsters unique in magnamund.
Why not?
But not in the top-3 of my personnal list. Many monsters are allready (very well) discribed. And talking about illustrations: in fact, I use the illustrations by Gary Chalk instead of thoses provided in the RpG...
wayward_sage wrote: 3. Book of Maps- A manual of loose, or binded maps that cover all of northern and southern Magnamund. I'd love to see this because Maps were the soul of the original game.
I agree 100%! :D
If Mongoose is interested in "officially" publishing my B/W maps (sorry sunwolf, no colour for me), I'll be very pleased!!! :wink: :D :P
wayward_sage wrote: 4. Adventures, Class Sourcebooks- This would be more apropriate down the line when we are able to build our campaigns. Most DM's make their own adventures.
I don't totally agree... I would like to see more adventures. At least, in order to give me new ideas, NPC, places "ready to use", and so on...
wayward_sage wrote: I'd actually like to see a book that is exclusively on the Kai Monks! A full tome about their history, culture, rituals, powers and important NPC's in the world at this time. Who's the leader of the Kai right now?! And i'd like to see at least a dozen high level or unique Kai monks stats with little bios about them.
Yes!
I vote for this kind of book!

As usual, everyone has his own very personnal idea of what should be published next. I must confess that sunwolf's propositions are close to mine!
:)

Just my opinion,

Sabbak
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Postby C. Chapman » Sat Nov 20, 2004 9:51 pm

wayward_sage wrote:Okay i gotta chime in here for a bit,
(snip)
Tell me what you think guys,
sunwolf
Personally, I think it's a little early to be getting concerned, what with the fact that only two supplements have been released, and one of those (The Darklands) actually did have plenty of flavour information, background, locale descriptions, and important NPCs.

That said, I do agree with some of the points, even if I personally find them a little overstated. :wink:

Addressing some of your individual points, I severely doubt that a book of maps would sell adequately to make it a viable project (least of all in full-colour), especially for such a relatively small press game such as LW. You certainly won't see reprints of the original LW maps any time in the future unless something changes, because unless I'm much mistaken, Gary Chalk has not given permission for Mongoose to use said maps, or any of his original artwork for that matter. Besides, all of the original colour maps are readily available online anyway.

Game plot ideas, adventure seeds, or whatever else you want to call them, are also relatively unimportant and low priority. For one thing, a cursory read through of the game by a creative GM will conjure up many adventure ideas already, and fans supporting a game will provide many others (such as the 60+ adventure ideas found of these very forums). Now, I'm not saying a nice selection of adventure nuggets in some other publication, occupying no more than a couple of pages, isn't a nice idea, but I'd definitely place it down the list.

Adventures are always difficult prospects, sadly because most of them just don't sell very well, and of those published many are subpar, or simply might not fit whatever campaign the GM might already be running. Die-hard fans that buy everything for a given line, good or bad, while a nice foundation, don't make up the majority of gamers, so an adventure can be a very hit-or-miss affair for the publisher. A far better idea is to take an existing adventure from another rpg that you know is good (like I'm doing with the Enemy Within campaign for WFRP) and adapt it. Given that LW is OGL (and therefore loosely based on the d20 System) finding adventures to convert is relatively easy and simple.

Regional sourcebooks is something I'd definitely like to see, but rather than see separate class books, I'd rather see both aspects combined. A single book on Sommerlund might provide detailed info. on the Kai monastery within it, as well as important NPCs, and suitable adventure seeds, and appropriate maps, hitting most of the targets you want to see more easily while avoiding the risky publication of far more focused supplements.

Monster manuals are something I'm relatively neutral about, but can certainly see a use for. However, the core rulebook, as well as The Darklands, already present a decent plethora of critters, so again, it might be better to include region-appropriate critters in the back of regional sourcebooks instead, though I have little doubt a Monsters of Magnamund book would sell to the GMs of the game.

The above is, of course, simply imo.

cheers!
Colin
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sunwolf

Postby sunwolf » Sat Nov 20, 2004 11:32 pm

I agree with you. What i'm personally fond of is what Wizards of the coast has been doing with their forgotten realms supliments.

I personally own the Underdark, and the Shinning South. And both are some of the best suppliments i've ever seen. Very detailed. Fantastic artwork. And they seem to have found a nice way to showcase a realm by including maps/classes/magic items/a tour of the areas+flavor text and adventure hooks.

I think a game like Lone Wolf would benifit from this approach. And, i mean, with the MoM and the might of magnamund, (more than likely gonna happen) there will be PLENTY of classes to play in the future.

What i mean is Lone Wolf should now move to source books that are based in great areas to adventure in and contain a slew of info so a dm could run a full campaign or a mini campaign in a certain area.

Such as:

1. Wildlands and surrounding areas

2. Lencia and the crusade lands

3. Vassagonia and fiefdoms

4. The Plague Lords of Ruel

5. The Stornlands and the Hardlands

Each of these areas has major trouble spots and would be perfect for a sourcebook containing history, maps, NPC's, Monsters, adventure hooks, secret organizations..etc.

I feel that Lone Wolf would work best if each of the books were packaged suppliments that give the GM a slew of source material. I know there is fan stuff out there, and that I could create my own. But i work alot, and i'd love to have a book i can just read on my offtime and get tons of ideas to put an adventure together in my head.

sunwolf
sunwolf

Postby sunwolf » Sat Nov 20, 2004 11:41 pm

Excellent maps btw Sabbak,

Really, you should send them to Mongoose. They remind me alot of the old 2nd ed. DnD Forgotten realms overhead maps. They look professional!

Any chance we can see Hammerdal? Helgedad? Kaag?

I'd love to see more!

sunwolf
Xex

Postby Xex » Sun Nov 21, 2004 5:41 am

Anyone can make up adventures of their own, you do not need sourcebooks for that. It is the rules for classes, adn the srot that need to be published. Everything else can be made up using our own imaginations.

Bland sourcebooks are just boring; why read through a plethora of stuff instead of making up my own? The gazateer in the rpg gives all the info I need, and it should be enough for anyone.

That said, we will be getting sourcebooks soon, if LW keeps selling well. For cults and the tyoe, check out darklands.
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Postby Confused Wolf » Sun Nov 21, 2004 9:22 am

Anyone can make up adventures of their own, you do not need sourcebooks for that. It is the rules for classes, adn the srot that need to be published. Everything else can be made up using our own imaginations.
Well, anyone can make up classes and stuff like that of their own, too.
Bland sourcebooks are just boring; why read through a plethora of stuff instead of making up my own?
Because it saves time. I think most (maybe even all) people here could make up their own setting or flash out Magnamund. But that's usually a lot of work.

While I don't like "over-detailed" settings, I'm always glad to have more setting information than presented in the gazetteer section. (That is not meant as a criticism of that section: it's quite good but of course, as it must describe a whole continent on relative few pages, leaves too many questions open.)

That doesn't mean that I'm a slave to "official setting material" - what I don't like I just change.

My suggestions: why not include new classes and new monsters in the regional sourcebooks? (Just like as in The Darklands). It does have the disadvantage that more general information would be spread out over different books, but that way everyone would get at least something that he/she likes.
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Postby C. Chapman » Sun Nov 21, 2004 11:15 am

I have to agree with the sentiments expressed that some setting development is a very good thing, and also with the fact that it shouldn't be overdone, and should still have a large degree of openness about it.

Don't get me wrong, I do love detailed settings, but I also increasingly appreciate settings that leave the GM with plenty of room to add the fiddly details, flesh things out, etc. so my ideal supplemental approach would walk that balancing line. I think The Darklands supplement hit the right balance of, "Just enough, but not too much", setting detail for me, so it's an approach I'd like to see carried over to other setting supplements (should they ever materialise).

cheers!
Colin
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Postby Sabbak » Sun Nov 21, 2004 6:09 pm

sunwolf wrote:Any chance we can see Hammerdal? Helgedad? Kaag?
Thanks for the comment sunwolf! :D

To answer your question: yes, Hammerdal is the next one I'm drawing (a hard one because of those damned moutains that surrounds the city!!!). After that I'll do Anskaven and perhaps Barrakesh in a near future.
You'll find all of them in the TravelGuide version 2, 3 or more! (or I can send the original scan to you with a kind e-mail... :wink: ).

Darklands cities are not planed but that's an idea that I keep on a corner of my brain. I was a bit disappionted by the map in the Darklands supplement (quite good but... not so "nightmarish"!).

To come back to the point of this thread, I must say I don't agree at all with Xex (nothing personnal Xex! :wink: ). Rules are simply not my cup of tea and, for me, are only the "technical" part of a RpG. That's not enough for me. I find this far too poor.
What I need is some new ideas to feed my imagination, to push my brain in other directions and to stimulate my love to tell stories.

I need to read new NPC, places and organisations descriptions, new adventures hooks or full adventures! I think THIS is RpG.

Colin said that he uses the "enemy within" campaign to built new adventures. Okay, but somebody had to write the Enemy Within first!!!
I can't only recycle the oldies to entertain myself and the players (who are not 10 yrs old boys and girls... usually! :wink: ).

But to make everyone happy, I think that August work on the Darklands is not far from perfect: many descriptions, NPC infos, new artifacts and... some rules and new classes.

But I think adventures books or gazeteer supplements are essential to get out of those damned tunnels just killing trolls and growing in power...

RpG is not just playstation stuff!
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Postby Ghost of Landar » Sun Nov 21, 2004 7:42 pm

add to the discussion here. I know for some of us Lone Wolf fanatics, these RPG books and supplements are the only means of getting "new" Lone Wolf stuff and maybe getting further information on Joe's creation. That's why it was slightly disappointing for part of that creation timeline to be an adaptation of an earlier fan-fic timeline, but a great deal of the material is new and gives insight into the world.

Especially since new Lone Wolf books aren't coming out soon and no solo RPG computer adventure seems headed into development, this is all we have. So any details are appreciated. I'm pretty sure that the amount of details in the Prisoners of Time doesn't greatly restrict a GM in creating the story. Heck, I'd love to see a supplement for the Daziarn.
Xex

Postby Xex » Sun Nov 21, 2004 10:59 pm

Confused Wolf wrote:
Anyone can make up adventures of their own, you do not need sourcebooks for that. It is the rules for classes, adn the srot that need to be published. Everything else can be made up using our own imaginations.
Well, anyone can make up classes and stuff like that of their own, too.

Really? And have them playtested by a plethora of playtesters, and be confident that any place you go to game everyone will be using the same classes? Going by that I suppose there was no need for an official kai class at all; the hundreds of homemade could have done just as well.
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Postby Confused Wolf » Mon Nov 22, 2004 8:23 am

Well, anyone can make up classes and stuff like that of their own, too.

Really? And have them playtested by a plethora of playtesters, and be confident that any place you go to game everyone will be using the same classes? Going by that I suppose there was no need for an official kai class at all; the hundreds of homemade could have done just as well.
You can playtest your self-made classes by yourself, too. Yes, that takes time, but that's exactly the point I made for books not just with new classes but also with setting material.

And if you change your gaming group you probably have to learn a new interpretation if the setting (and maybe some house rules), too, so why not also learn a new interpretation of the classes? Thus I see no reason why we absolutely need "official" classes.

But of course it is nice to have the official classes. My point was not that they are useless or absolutely unnecessary. Rather I argued that they are not (vastly) more essential than setting information. I think we need both - rules stuff and setting stuff - equally.
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Postby mthomason » Mon Nov 22, 2004 1:41 pm

Confused Wolf wrote:I think we need both - rules stuff and setting stuff - equally.
The ideal RPG purchase for me is about 20% rules/stats and 80% narrative text about the setting. I'm far more comfortable being given an essay on (for example) Giak physiology and society and being left to extrapolate the rules than being given a set of stats and nothing to tell me where these things live, what they do, what their motivation is, etc. Of course, having both is preferable. If I'm GMing a setting, I don't want to have to flick through numerous references to make sure I've got something right (despite the fact that as GM, what I say is right anyway), I'd much rather have all the necessary reference material in the book, and not have an RPG that expects me to have prior knowledge of the setting.

Of course, the LW RPG doesn't expect that, and has a wealth of information for people new to Magnamund, so I have no complaints about it. Plus I'm a longtime LW fan anyway, so I have most of the reference works necessary to do research... I'm thinking more of other settings by other manufacturers that could use improving :)
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Postby Sabbak » Mon Nov 22, 2004 1:56 pm

mthomason wrote:The ideal RPG purchase for me is about 20% rules/stats and 80% narrative text about the setting.
As a GM, I'm very close to mthomason's point of view. :)

But I think the economical point of view is quite different... :?

If you produce a book with classes and powers descriptions you aim not only the GM but also the players. White Wolf had understood that long ago with all those clanbooks... the GM needs them, but the player needs them too. The customers are multiplied (like pieces of bred by JC) and the company is happy!

In a perfect world, this will allow the company to produce less "economicaly attractive" but more "confidential" material... In a perfect world... :P
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Postby Balgin Stondraeg » Fri Aug 12, 2005 9:04 pm

When I first picked up the Lone Wolf books back in the late 80's I really loved them. Lone Wolf did things that other characters just simply didn't have to do in other gamebooks (like Fighting Fantays for example, the The Way of the Tiger Ninja roleplaying gamebooks are an exeption). Lone Wolf often had to run, hide, sneak and generaly do things that made sense rather than just stand still and fight every monster that he met.

I never envisaged Lone Wolf as being a "really powerful individual" but as one who had to play the underdog to survive. After fights the text would indicate his exahustion, he would be poisoned and actualy suffer side effects (as opposed to other gamebooks where poison might have some effect like direct damage but in the Lone Wolf series the npc's would notice your condition and react to it). This and Joe Dever's wonderful ability to write helped make Magnamund seem real. The world felt really alive and filled with deep cultures and that helped draw me into it.

When I picked up the Lone Wolf RPG I saw that it seemed to be mostly focussed on character classes without much of a world for them to live in. I would have prefered it if it had offered more of a welcoming world that drew me in than trying to stun me with "mega" classes but that's quite alright. There's enough information in the gazeteer section to prompt me to dig out the gamebooks (and head over to Project Aon for books 10-12 which I never managed to get) and replay them to get a decent feel for the world. This in turn is preparing me for when I start the Magnamund campaign at my local gaming club (which is temporarily nonexistant due to the machinations of some materialistic people who want us to more than double the rent on the venue).

Now I could complain that the Lone Wolf roleplaying game is too focussed on classes (and not much else) but what I'm (slowly) doing is bulking out the rest by digging up what I can and supplying other stuff to make the world seem more alive. It also wouldn't be fair to say that the LWRPG focusses too heavily on characters because whilst the rulebooks (core and supplements) are very class heavy (:() the adventures published so far are very setting heavy and give a great feel of a living, breathing world. This is great, it's a good thing. The published adventures evoke the old Dever feel of making the world feel really alive and welcoming, they draw you into the world in which adventures happen.
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Postby jadrax » Mon Aug 15, 2005 12:35 pm

The important thing is the line sells, the more people buy it, the more likley they will bring out more stuff.

You only have to look at Deciphers, LotRs line, which despite huge movie interest, still got ended due to lack of sale to realise that world background books just don't seem to sell that well.

Bring out the comercialy viable stuff first, then target the collectors with more in depth stuff.
Xex

Postby Xex » Mon Aug 15, 2005 1:10 pm

I agree with jadrax; though the decipher line had other faults that resutled in the game being stopped. (bad handling by decipher, a broken system: had they taken the kinks out and it would have been one of the best rpg's IMO)

The adventures and world info released in signs and portents should satisfy those craving fluff info; what we ned now is the might of magnamund classbook, so the sorcerors and warriors can be balanced. After that mongoose can focus on more fluff than crunch.
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Postby Balgin Stondraeg » Mon Aug 15, 2005 10:21 pm

But what's the point of having characters if they don't have a world to live in?

Most people will have probably bought the LWRPG book as a "classes to use in their own campaigns" book and if there'd been more setting related stuff then maybe they'd be playing in Magnamund and buying the expansions and adventures and miniatures. As it stands it seems to be a supplementary book of classes for people which is probably why it's not selling as well as it could (and also a lot of the Conan players probably bought the game because they'd seen the films and never knew anything about the short stories by Robert. E. Howard). If there had been a LOne Wolf film things might've been different.
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Storm Raven

Postby Storm Raven » Tue Aug 16, 2005 2:58 am

I'm in agreement with xex and jardax. The Might of Magnumund book does need to come out, so that there is a balance between Magic and Men of Arms. I understand the desire to have more background and setting information for the campaign world, but we must all realize that the Lone Wolf approach to classes almost dictates the need for class books. With each class being unique to itself and and a complete carrier path for a character, classes are not as easily mixed and matched without some very careful planning and understanding of the possible fall backs of such multiclassing in the Lone Wolf setting. This is very much unlike D&D where multiclassing is not only a highly viable option, but also an option that is encouraged with the hundreds, if not thousands, of prestige classes available. Also the Classes in Lone Wolf follow a bit more of a structured routine to reflect the training and background of a particular class, as where with D&D you can have a fighter character that takes no other classes but, depending on feat selection, can be groomed to be a Kings archer, a sly duelist, brute of a warrior, or any other type of warrior that the player can imagine. The class that comes closest to this in Lone Wolf is the GM's Warrior Class which is not really intended to be used as a character class and when compared to the other Character Classes falls a little short on adventuring viability and power. Then again, the role of the Lone Wolf GM Warrior Class is not that of a player class. Rather it is designed to help the GM flesh out the world and provide allies and opponents for the players. But this is just my long winded 2cents. Gee, who knew two cents could get so much :?
-KaiLord

Postby -KaiLord » Tue Aug 16, 2005 9:04 am

Okay, discussing whether something shoud be published is fine. What I want to know is this:

IS anything else going to be published? So far this year, there isn't much in the harvest for us fans to reap. I really feel like Lone Wolf is being neglected and/or forgotten. Lots of things were talked about in the past, along with dodgy answers in the style of "we have things planned".

I'd just like a bit of honesty on what the future of the line is, something not cryptic or along the lines of "there's more planned." Specifics. That's what we need at this point.

KL, ever the pessimist, hungry for more

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