Re: Epic NPCs and their stats

From: David Dunham <david_at_K357L3ISAdUovZtzV-N_ZgSLr9a7of1rhauqjWJBQveknQOs1doBgauqWSMy9tm9Mhm9cd>
Date: Thu, 16 Aug 2007 19:17:42 -0700

I've said a bunch, so I'm trying to keep quiet, but


>And heck, I want stats, not exclusively for the numbers but for all
>the background goodies (like followers) that you get with them.

Nobody is saying that NPCs shouldn't be described. But on this side of the Atlantic, "stats" means numbers. You can easily describe NPCs and their followers without numbers.


>What's wrong with letting those of us who would like to have the
>numbers have our way. Our game will benefit, and your own will not be
>effected in the least.

In an ideal world, and assuming that the numbers aren't actually misleading (can our group really take on Harrek and have a chance at winning?), you'd be right.

As a practical matter, leaving out numbers means more space for background goodies (like followers). And leaving out numbers probably means less time spent in manuscript preparation, since the numbers don't need to be haggled over. Who knows, these efficiencies might result in an extra book worth of information each year.

However, I actually proposed a relative rating. This would take the same space (you'd have abbreviations like VG for Very Good), but probably less argument (Harrek and JarEel are both Superlative, you don't need to figure which is 11W4 and which only 10W4). If you need an absolute number, you could have suggested values (e.g. VG might be 10W2). This approach would thus be useful both to numeroclasts like Jeff or Kevin and numerodules like you.

>those of us wanting the stats are actually going with the scales in
>the HQ book

As I've pointed out, the book is not internally consistent, providing character improvement rules that are at odds with the scales. (And completely different from stats published for Hero Wars rules.)

I think it's easier for each Narrator to come up with appropriate story-based resistance than to try to fix the character advancement rules to work with two sets of stats (Hero Wars and HeroQuest).

Especially once they have the NPC descriptions that help them run a colorful contest. For example, even though Domast Longear's numbers in Barbarian Adventures (a Hero Wars supplement) are way too low for a HeroQuest game (remember our rule of thumb, if you can't get a +20 augment you don't care about the contest), I know that he will often raise legal concerns when he's engaged in diplomacy.

Oh, one more thing about character advancement rules: it's not just the rules, it's the play style. Frex, I do expect players to be spending some HP each session. But I also expect them to keep a few to improve with -- unlike Greg who expects his players to use almost all their HP during the session. And even within a group, you might have stingy people like Trotsky, who might be willing to lose but keep HP, and others who spend more to get better victories. So it's really impossible to fix the rules, because different groups will behave differently.

So it's easier for each game to have a different Harrek, in terms of whether he's 10W4 or 10W6. But he's really not different, because either way he wears a white bearskin and can kill almost anything.

Donald replying to Simon

> >I'd include a catch-all Lunar Heroine 10W4 just to allow her to
>>brush off minor things. Someone throws a spirit at her? Doesn't
>>matter because she's a Lunar Heroine.
>I don't like catch-all abilities of that sort, particularly at that
>rating. Loses any sense of character because whatever's happening
>she only needs the one ability.

Nor does it help the Narrator explain how she deals with the spirit. "Heroically?"


David Dunham
Glorantha/HQ/RQ page:


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