The World’s Favourite Fantasy Roleplaying Game made the Dungeon famous.  You and your players have played that game many, many times.  It’s a safe, familiar option, but you are ready to try something a bit different and have picked up OpenQuest to broaden your and your player’s horizons.

It’s a path that many D100 fans, including myself, have taken.  Those early games where we stuck to the template we already knew and created narrowly defined stereotypes the best we could using the unfamiliar character generation system.  Then we threw our newly created characters into the first battle that came along, hoping to get a reward, ending up grievously wounded and with very little to show.  Sensing the disappointment, the Referee, who had read the rulebook cover to cover, tried to guide the players.

“Did you know you could have talked to them, convinced them with your Influence skill and probably got what you wanted that way?  Or even used your Deception skill, which everyone has, not just thieves, to sneak past them?  Perhaps Ralph’s character, who he’s configured to be more of a magician, yet who can still wield a sword and wears chain mail from his days as a noble, could have cast Protection 3 on Carol’s character, a farmer turned warrior. Then with that Ringmail armour they wear, they would have been invulnerable to those goblin’s attacks?  If you had talked to them, and I know some of you have Goblinoid as a Language skill, you would have learnt they are members of the Bloodied Fang cult and how they are related to the villainous Burning Horde, and that’s the real treasure of this encounter.  It’s a shame you missed that since it opens up all sorts of possibilities.” 

This approach may have mixed results.  It may open up worlds of wonder and opportunities for more expansive play for some players.  Others may be horrified by the perceived density of rules and tactics that they feel are necessary to master to play the game properly.

This book aims to ease both players and Referees into OpenQuest, by using that familiar setting of the Dungeon, starting small and with baby steps, gradually easing everyone into system mastery.

It doesn’t try to replicate the World’s Favourite Fantasy Roleplaying Game’s rules, assets, and feel.  Instead, suppose the players want to start in familiar territory, such as creating a character who has casting magic as a focus. In that case, the book will explain how to do that and then point out where they go after they start naturally breaking out of the limitations of that approach.  And that’s the aim of the OpenQuest rules to provide a vehicle that goes wherever the players want to take their character.

OpenQuest Dungeons cover by Jon Hodgson