Share good ideas and conversation.   Login, Join Us, or Take a Tour!
comment by Devac
Devac  ·  666 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: I am in need of minimal opensource D20-esque systems

    I find it kind of interesting that D&D wasn't your first pen and paper RPG and that that's true for most people in Poland. Here in the states, D&D is like a gateway drug.

I have started with hand-me-down Warhammer Fantasy Role Play 1st edition from my brother (the oldest RPG here, first one that was translated to Polish in late '80s o around that time) and in the meantime I was playing:

- Cyberpunk 2020

- Neuroshima

- Wolsung: The Steam Pulp Fantasy (original title was way better though; Wolsung: The Magic of the Age of Steam)

- Monastyr

D&D was probably my third or fourth system overall :). It's not because of popularity, although it's not the most played one here, but because D&D books are fucking expensive when compared to some of the other RPGs. Admittedly, they have some of the best production quality out there, but for a price of 3.5 PHB alone, back when it was new, you could buy Neuroshima core rulebook and one flavor book (literally, very low on mechanics but about 70 page worth of scenario inspirations in stories and rumors you can find during your adventures).

These are not the only games I know, but it's a good selection of ones really popular here aside of recent surge of Dark Heresy and similar 40k games.

I'll try working on the English version of the setting and start sharing it here, but after reading it last night myself I have to say that it is more likely to be a major rewrite than just translation. Let's say that idea started when I was about 13-14 and you can likely guess how that might look. While I pride myself to have no Mary Sues in the setting, I have a hard time finding a page where there is nothing for which I don't want to travel back in time and slap my younger self :P.

rd95  ·  665 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Wow. I'm surprised to see that Poland has so many resources available. That's actually awesome as hell. In fact, I think it's safe to say that you've played more game systems than I have. Now I feel a need to rectify that.

Devac  ·  665 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Most people here start hobby around high school or university, but before publishers started to recognize that most people can't really drop 1/3 of their scholarship on one book and made some steps to reduce the cost… people had two options. Don't play or make their own setting. According to my father and brother, in the '90s you could bet that most groups had one or two books and at least one collaborative home-brew setting or system. After all, you can pinpoint a fantasy or sci-fi book that your group likes and make a setting together for a cost of few nights worth of coffee… significantly less than hardcover RPG ;). Hell, there were at least six versions of Witcher RPG before even the Polish book series was completed (around 1997 IIRC).

A lot of the modern Polish authors started by getting recognized as particularly prolific people on Polish parts of Usenet, IRC or fora. There is still a magazine called "Tawerna RPG" ("RPG Inn" would be the best translation) that started their distribution around 1996 via one CD-ROM gaming magazine. They had a part of their CDs dedicated to readers creations. Games, magazines, long-form blogs etc. I'm not even sure if that magazine still exists, but Tawerna prevailed ;).

It's actually a bit sad that many people choose to buy books instead of making their own materials. It seemed almost like a honed tradition until less than a decade ago.

But it's not exclusive to Poland. Germany had similar if somewhat less prolific scene. Sweden almost relishes in gaming exclusively the Swedish RPGs. Reasons were similar to Polish: a lot of the books were insultingly expensive while having a simply pathetic amount of printed copies. Right now D&D is not the most popular game, or even considered as the gateway drug, in any of the countries that I have mentioned.