Last year I began work on a no-magic, historical RPG using a modified d20 / OSR chassis. As I worked on the rules, that chassis began to grow and mutate. Lots of rules and subsystems. Accounting for social class dynamics in the “long sixteenth century” and more.
It got to over a hundred pages – and that was without example enemies and historical references. That’s all perfectly fine. Lots of people enjoy some crunch in their games and a lot of mechanical moving parts. I certain do!
The reality is all of my gaming these days is with very rules-light systems. My busy, grown-up friends and I just don’t have the available brain space for memorizing crunchy rules. And I, when acting as GM, don’t have the interest in the heavy prep those rules require.
So, I’ve pivoted significantly. I’m still fascinated by the 16th and 17th centuries, obviously. I still really want to game in that historical setting.
So to actually do that I am draping OSR sensibilities over a rules-light narrativist framework (heavily inspired by and using a distilled version of the City of Mist narrative mechanic).
This is the first WIP of the revised character sheets I feel comfortable sharing! 🤣 That sidebar needs some love but it will get there.
That bottom Strength and Weakness section? The art that looks like paperclips? Your eyes aren’t tricking you – that’s exactly what that corner is designed for. Details on that coming later.
I’ve also shared this pics over on my Instagram, which I’m starting to use more: