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Old 07-22-2018, 06:37 PM   #1
JLV's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Far northern California
Default In My Perfect TFT...

Per a discussion on another thread, Steve Jackson suggested that we discuss what kinds of future products we might be interested in for TFT.

Suggestions that Steve already has on board (and that I'm pretty sure he already has on his plate as possible future products) include a Bestiary, and probably some kind of Cidri splat book, so I don't think we need to make those suggestions again.

What I think he's hoping for are something more than just general ideas. What I think he wants from us at this point are specific suggestions.

To that end, I'll start it off with three I've already made elsewhere:

Mass Combat (possibly including Siege Combat); either as a splat book or as a game (that would provide counters and maybe a generic map or two of a battlefield and hopefully a walled city). What I have in mind is something that would be a TFT version of a classic wargame like Centurion or Spartan, and maybe a siege battle like Gondor from the old SPI company, only on a mini-game format (such as Gondor was). Ideally it should relate to the other two types of combat listed below. For example, the units you could purchase to man the ships in Ramspeed provided an interesting concept that could be used in a land mass combat game (you could buy various types of land combat units and siege machines to put on your ships).

Water Combat (ship to ship, fleet, and underwater -- if a game, something like an expanded Ramspeed, see also above...) Underwater is a little more difficult, especially for mass combat, but maybe someone has a bright idea on how to approach that?

Aerial Combat (both individual/small group, and mass combat). No one has ever really done this well as far as I know for individual combat (most aerial combat games involve jet fighters and are way too complex for what we want), so I don't have any good examples to offer -- maybe someone else does? As far as the mass combat version goes, some sort of subroutine similar to what was used in Flashpoint: Korea or Frank Chadwick's old Third World War game might be a useful model, but again, I don't know for sure.

Those are three off the top. I know that Steve has mentioned he's interested in GM-run adventures (not just solitaire games) and settings (and I don't think the settings need necessarily be confined to Cidri -- he'd probably like a well done "Ancient Rome" or "Viking" setting too, if someone could offer him one).

So what ideas do YOU have? Let's share them and see if we can pique some interest by Steve in some of them! ;-)
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Old 07-22-2018, 09:18 PM   #2
Jim Kane
Join Date: Mar 2018
Default Re: In My Perfect TFT...

Now that SJ has Guy on-board as the line-editor (Hooray!), as I have said in other posts before, I would love to see Guy teamed and working with Scott Haring as the TFT Product Manager - again, purely for Scott's innovative product creativity and pacing, in filling out a line with the proper support material concepts - as he did so magnificently with Car Wars.

Ideally, I envision Scott musing aloud: "Perhaps the line now needs a (___ expansion, ___ supplement, ____ reference, or ____ adventure), and Guy replying: "I'm on it!" :::insert furious keyboard typing sounds here:::.

Again, as I have said many times in the past, to see the product of those two Creatives working together would really be something - with Scott suggesting the product vehicles (no pun intended), and Guy and SJ filling in those product concepts with their creative brilliance.

Now, barring that reality, again, as I have said in the past, I would like to see the game rules expanded from the Labyrinth scope to "the next level".

To me the next level is where the PCs can take their ill-gotten treasures and then, acquire land (through purchase, claim, or strong-arm); onto which they can build a home-base (be it a tower, keep, or castle; including underground labyrinth, of course), and become a presence on the economic/sociopolitical landscape - with the ability to define a country or city-state, as one defines a figure, and establish trade routes, economies, and of course war against other countries.

But all that starts when the PCs can enter the bigger game.

For example, *What If* a group of PCs decided to erect a keep somewhere deep in the Huldre Forest, or, atop a summit along the southern Gargoyle Mountains (See map TFT:ITL p 73)?

Might the PCs grow so rich and powerful that they one day overthrow the Duke himself? Or, do they simply pay their taxes to the local Baron when he comes to call?

We have no rules for this whatsoever.

And, if they did build such a keep within the Duchy of Dran - without a land-grant from the Duke, how might he respond (and with what force)?

Again, we have no rules for this scope of gaming in The Fantasy Trip - what you do with the big money after you have bought gold weapons and all the enchanted armor available - and *this* is the point where D&D (specifically AD&D) leaves TFT far, far behind.

And, this is *only* because TFT never had a chance to grow into itself, beyond the Labyrinth level. This is a shame, as TFT:ITL has so many thing in it which suggested *the bigger game*.

All of my TFT gaming buddies have always felt that had SJ stayed with Metagmaing - and Metagaming not gone "belly-up" - TFT would have totally blown D&D off the map - purely due to better and more functionally usable rules.

We just never had the chance to get there.

The AD&D world has an amazingly huge scope to it, *but* what they don't have is a Steve Jackson-style integrated rules base; and that is where we have the distinct advantage.

All we need do (he said) is to fill out and expand the scope beyond the Labyrinth level.

Guy touched on this in his most-excellent GrailQuest adventure; but there was no way to sustain a presence in that reality - *but* the suggestion is there.

So, that, as a general direction for TFT that would constitute "my perfect TFT"; with the perfect guys (SJ, Guy, and Scott) working on it together.

If I were in the position, I would probably just throw Guy and Scott the old 1st edition Dungeon Masters Guide from 1979, and say: "Break it up, throw out all their combat, magic, etc, and make the rest of the game work for TFT."

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Old 07-22-2018, 10:33 PM   #3
Join Date: May 2018
Default Re: In My Perfect TFT...

Er... a supernatural religion system, of course!
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Old 07-23-2018, 03:15 AM   #4
ak_aramis's Avatar
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Location: Alsea, OR
Default Re: In My Perfect TFT...

Originally Posted by zot View Post
Er... a supernatural religion system, of course!

In a book of optional rules.
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Old 07-23-2018, 04:50 AM   #5
Chris Rice
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: London Uk, but originally from Scotland
Default Re: In My Perfect TFT...

In my perfect TFT.....

.... we'd be making up for lost time. All the other major games that were around when Metagaming went bust (D&D, T&T, RQ etc) have had continuous development over the last 35 years. I'd like us to hit the ground running with lots of new quality content:

*Cidri book
*expanded Magic Book (Colleges etc)
*Religious Magic
*New Microquests
*New GM adventures
*Adventures focussing on Wizards with challenges specific to their abilities.
*ditto for thieves, etc.
*GM screen
*Play mats
*Lots of counters
*Figure bases
*Regular Magazine
*Apps for character/dungeon/map creation
*Character cards
*TFT specific minis (Octopii)

and most importantly: a Worldwide community of people playing a "living game."

That's not much to ask for, is it?
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Old 07-23-2018, 07:44 AM   #6
The Wyzard
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Default Re: In My Perfect TFT...

Cidri book.
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Old 07-23-2018, 08:03 AM   #7
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Coquitlam B.C.
Default Re: In My Perfect TFT...

Originally Posted by Chris Rice View Post
... we'd be making up for lost time. ...

and most importantly: a Worldwide community of people playing a "living game."

That's not much to ask for, is it?
Hi Chris, all.
Very well put Chris. Pretty much what is on your list but add...

-- Supplement on artifacts and how to make them fun.
-- A 'hymenopteran like' expansion.
-- More emphasis on terrain for building more variety in battles.
-- A expansion that goes into a lot more detail on the wizard's guild and the internal politics, relations to powerful nobles and the nitty gritty of how it works.
-- Nice expansion on economics.

Warm regards, Rick.
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Old 07-23-2018, 01:41 PM   #8
Join Date: Jul 2018
Default Re: In My Perfect TFT...

All of the above!

But a natural next step would be to build on the life outside of adventure!

TFT was the first game with jobs that paid and you could even die in between real adventures. You have one of the more workable rule systems for creating magic items, cost and balance wise. How and why to hire apprentices and even basic union rules of maximum fST you get from them. :-D

Work more on these systems. How could a feudal keep system work, with taxes, general "crop" yields and number of inhabitants? Maybe divide them into different levels like unskilled, skilled and masters. And a system to keep track of moral, wellbeing, wealth, prestige, etc. And maybe tie this into a basic war game with levies and hired mercenaries. Most likely the system should not be detailed and exact, like 200 men at arms, but use 1 unit of normal martial land troops. The exact headcount or quality is up to the GM to decide, but a system of relationships. Like one fortified land area can support one land troop of ST 1 OR give 1 extra wealth point of taxes OR improve one building 1 step OR... And then the players and GM can fill in the details of their assets, military units, buildings, land areas and wealth levels. Maybe that unit is The Millers' Levy or The Fifth Mounted Balrog Battalion.

A good start would be to take a look at the Stolen Lands in the Kingmaker campaign from Paizo or Pendragon with its generation type of play. The best campaigns and the most memorable I have played have been those where you fight for things you have built or invested in; sacrificed your men for your village people, where you had to defend your wizard academy or backstabbed to keep on top of your thieves guild. A world where men are some of the worst enemies there is and the players greatest accomplishments are not their XP level, trophies on the walls or their magic items, but their friends, allies, enemies and lasting mark on the world.

Encourage that sort of play and TFT will never die again... :-)
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Old 07-23-2018, 01:46 PM   #9
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Location: Far northern California
Default Re: In My Perfect TFT...

That's a really good suggestion!

I'd like to once again recommend both a macro Economic game, and a macro Political game; very simple, with some useful mechanics that allow both backgrounds to facilitate play at all levels.

I'd also like to see a religion system of some kind at some point, even if it's more political than "powerful," if you know what I mean...
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Old 07-23-2018, 05:00 PM   #10
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Default Re: In My Perfect TFT...

I also want to throw into the pot for everyone's consideration, some kind of Solo Campaign system, along the lines of Gloomhaven or similar games, so that plots and adventures can be generated for people who don't have groups available to play with, or who just want to play solo for a while.

It could be generated via card play or random tables, or some combination of the two that would create new missions, allow interactions with third parties, lead to newly generated dungeons and so on.

Ideally, it would also allow some kind of wilderness/cross country adventure (Barbarian Prince did this pretty well), either through a pre-existing map, or through one which is randomly generated as play advances (I think some Euro games do this pretty well) en route to the dungeon, and would include a random "dungeon" generator of some kind.
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