Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Kult: Trimming the fat part one.

Skinning the fat from the rules of Kult.

The very basic system for the Kult rpg isn't actually to bad. It's pretty simple, roll a D20 and get under your skill. Damage uses a wounds system. You have some added flavor like Advantages, Disadvantages, mental balance and, of course, your dark secret. However a lot of that the simple ideas are buried under some mid to late 80's game design. So I started cutting down on what is there and I'll go over it bit by bit one blog post at a time.

First off I'm giving the skill section an overhaul. Games from this time period loved their skill lists and man does it show with the pages and pages of them. Don't get me wrong I used to love them as well and would go through all my games and compile a master skill list for everything.... yeah but I got over that. Vampire: TM was the game that sort of opened my eyes to the 'simpler is better' approach. Their base list of thirty skills covered a lot of what was ever necessary in most games. Not to mention tossing what other games had several skills for under one title. Like just having 'firearms' instead of pistol, long gun, shotgun, etc.

So going with the simpler is better approach works best in this area. Athletics can cover swimming, climbing, etc; anything sports of physical activity related is good to throw into there. Firearms replacing all the different gun types. Brawling and Martial Arts replace all the special maneuvers and strange attacks (more on how I work them specifically will be in a future article).

Now I know combining them like this isn't realistic. But I toss realistic out the window when it comes to making something smoother, faster and easier to use.

Then I also remove another part of old style game design. I remove the skills based on attributes or special stats idea altogether. No more CHA based, or MOVE based, etc. They stand alone from your attributes in every way. How this changes attributes I'll have to go over later.

In the end I have a half made list that is strangely like that of the old World of Darkness games. Plus being open to player suggestions or specialization. If it's not on the list they can ask if they can buy it and then I say yes or tell them which existing skill it falls under or suggest a better broader skill to buy. Example: Say a player wants Acupuncture as a skill, I could either let them buy it or suggest that they buy Eastern Medicine as it will give them Acupuncture along with some other handy stuff.

I'm not posting up a skill list yet as I'm still revising and tossing ideas around. Currently playtesting with pregenerated characters and getting feedback. But when I'm all done I will make a final suggested list.


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