EPK Review 3_part3&last: OPEN LEGEND, an Open Source RPG to tell Stories of Legend!

The second part of the interreview about OPEN LEGEND is here! Pictures in the interreview posts are from Open Legend’s homepage and community. At least several of them are, originally, from an artist named Saryth. Brian Feister, the author of OPEN LEGEND, owns the copyrights of the pictures. You can find more of Saryth in Deviantart!

Third and last part of the interreview, we continue a bit with the rules!

Back to character’s creation, to set Attributes’ scores you can use Quick Builds or a Custom Build, with a purchase system. Some Archetypes can help you to set in an instant the attributes of certain character types: there are no Classes, per se, but a clever distribution of the attributes sets the first step in creating the, fully customized, character you want! I like this kind of freedom since a long time ago and it is there in precious, few, games, like one of my preferred ones Star Wars (no, no, not THAT thing of Disney … the old one) with the D6 system, from West End Games.

archetypes Other scores, like Defenses from attacks and Hit Points, depend on some Attributes value. To complete the character you get to choose from a list of many Feats (the Archetypes can help you there too), races, equipment et voilà! A part for some finishing but important touches, like physical and mental description and the background, your character is complete: it could even take less than 5 minutes, taking all the shortcuts, a very useful thing should you need to create a new Hero in a pinch, or for a DM creating a few last-minute NPCs.

though-as-nailsYou can better tailor your characters to your needs with Banes and Boons that you can use, provided you possess the right Attribute at a sufficient value. Using Open Legend team’s own words: “Banes allow you to stun your enemies, set them ablaze, or otherwise hinder them with devastating status effects. Boons are perks that you grant yourself or allies, such as magical healing, damage resistance, and flight.” Your fighter can, thus, disarm, stun or make his foes fall on the ground, not only hitting it with a weapon.

About the setting, as we said, you can use your preferred one; the rules are easy to adapt and you can quickly create a new Race or Feats, Banes/Boons and so on, comparing with the established ones for sake of balance. So let’s start again with questions.

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8)      Brian, we noticed that the artworks in your homepage come from a Deviantart artist, named Saryth: is he the main artist in your products?

Saryth is an amazing artist, I’ll be forever grateful to him as much of the look and feel of the game (which people have enjoyed) comes from his work. However, he’s moved onto other projects now and the art was commissioned years ago. Some of my amazing illustrators featured in the Core Rules and Amaurea’s Dawn campaign setting include: Randy Vargas (Vargasni), Crystal Sully, Ivan Sevic, and Ilse Gort, and Yunior Guerra.

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9)      Looking forward to see the new graphics then! There is already something new in your homepage about Amaurea and, also, a new logo of Open Legend, between question 8 and 9: you can compare it to the previous one in part 1 of the interreview and tell what you think in Open Legend community! This is an evident sign that, even though the game is complete, the project is still very alive and well! We also happy to know that you have several followers! It is normal, with a good product, a blog and an active community: what can you tell us about it? Are these friends and fans important for the development of new projects? How do you interact with them?

I interact with fans, collaborators, developers, illustrators, and writers on a daily basis. I have an incredible team working on the project and I’m honored that they have placed their trust in me to make something great. Thanks to them I think it’s very much going to happen and the game will make a lasting impression on the industry. Most of these people are friends that I have met through Open Legend. Yes, these people are all very important to the project and knowing that they are playing and enjoying the game is the most powerful source of personal drive and determination to keep pushing forward.

In terms of the community, I think people should check it out for themselves! Stop by https://openlegend.mightybell.com/ and have a look at our growing community of players, ask questions, pitch in your own ideas.

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10)      A good advice, I went to take a look there and I was quite envious, I would like to have a similar community for our blog; but we are young (as a blog, only as a blog), we will see in time! A part for Open Legend itself, did you develop several products? We only mentioned in passing “A Star Once Fallen.” What about fan-made Open Legend products, both commercial and non-commercial? In addition, what about the licenses?

I recommend checking out the development board for Open Legend which includes some early drafts of campaign settings and other community contributions. Right now we have people working on everything from Space Opera, to Post-post Apocalyptic Future, to Modern Psychic Spy / High-tech, to 1800’s London Superheroes. The development board is a good place to get in touch with the authors of those other content items. And once I get the Kickstarter off the ground for Amaurea’s Dawn (per my comment last week), I’ll turn my attention to the writers and making a decision about which content to focus on publishing next.

For licenses, we’ve kept things simple: Non-commercial is completely open, so you can go ahead and put it right up on DriveThruRPG if it’s free, or you can go with our royalty-free Commercial license, which requires content be submitted for approval prior to publishing, at which time we give our approval and then publishers can go ahead with their content.

I’m aware of this being slightly problematic compared to OGL content which does not require any approval, I’d like to give 3rd Party Publishers the same peace of mind and am planning to work with lawyers to hammer out something that allows publishers to release work without getting publisher approval but also prevents the rules from being copied and repackaged with only minimal changes / adjustments.

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11)      I think it is very reasonable to try to avoid a misuse of what you created, with other people’s help too, and in many years. It is also quite generous to let the others use it without asking something back. But about other worthy things, it seems you organize several events; do you care to tell us a bit more? When and where are the next ones?

My main event right now is my weekly Sunday 1pm EDT game Open Legend game featured on http://twitch.tv/EncounterRoleplay. Will, Sydney, and the cast there are amazing and have been wonderful friends throughout the process of marketing and promoting the game. Other than that, I’m always looking for GMs interested in running the system and happy to help connect them with interested players to fill up their games, it’s particularly helpful to play online via Roll20 or similar to break through geographic barriers.

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12)      Good, I hope many people participate! And now, the mother of all questions. What are your plans for the future? New products and so on. I have to admit that I am VERY curious: from some tweets of you and last week answers, I saw many well-known names in the gaming world that will collaborate with you. PLEASE tell us something more!

Haha, well I guess I spoiled this surprise earlier, but YES, we’re very excited for the Amaurea’s Dawn campaign setting which will Kickstart in October and feature Matthew Mercer (the GM for Critical Role on Geek & Sundry), Ed Greenwood (Creator of the Forgotten Realms), and John Wick (Author of 7th Sea RPG), Savannah Broadway (Paizo), BJ Hensley (Rite Publishing, and many others), and Ryan Schapals (Hyper RPG).

In Amaurea’s Dawn, there is home world, with an epic megalopolis of a city 100 miles wide and 5 levels high. Ed Greenwood is the writer for Schlectenberg, a smog-wreathed cesspool of progress and mechanical ingenuity. This resource-starved city is a sprawling metropolis that has grown, consumed, and steamrolled many subcultures in it’s growth toward the behemoth that it is today.

Driven to the brink of self-destruction, the Council of Three (Archmages that form the ruling Magocracy) have re-opened a portal that was opened nearly 100 years ago, except those who traveled though it never returned and were never seen or heard from again. Re-opening and stepping through that portal in a desperate gamble, the people of Schlectenberg step through into a savage jungle world in hopes of supplying the needed resources to  save their dying home world. Amaurea (the jungle world) is Inhabited by a number of vastly different Elven tribes, savage shamanic elves strung-out on drugs and lost in “The Weave” (web that binds all life together) but tainted by a nightmare energy, advanced bioengineers that tamper with the basic building blocks of life – and others say ought not be tampered with, and a noble and heroic Elven House that is in a state of decline while their leader is blinded by bitterness, and a tribe of freakish mutants who have taken bioengineering too far and turned themselves into monsters.

In diplomatic relations with the Amaureans, there is a problem – dark forces from the home world (Schlectenberg) work to alter the course of history. A cult of supposed prophets, the Voices of the Light, who use dark magic to bend the minds of anyone they deem important. This cult has allied with weapons manufacturers who are fanning the flames of war and will stop at nothing to return to the glory days when Schlectenberg was a conquering nation that devoured everything in it’s path with their military might.

The main theater / stage of the campaign story is the conflict zone, which is Amaurea (hence the campaign’s name “Amaurea’s Dawn”), a typical campaign involves the players being set free to explore Amaurea and discover it’s intricate blend of danger, adventure, and political turmoil that makes the situation far more delicate than meets the eye.

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Everything seems so cool, Brian! Thank you for your friendliness and openness, well you seem to have a knack for it, and we hope our readers will come, en masse, on your homepage and that they read and play Open Legend! We will for sure keep a close eye on this last project, maybe we will do a review of the Kickstarter or, at least, speak about the follow-up of the project but our readers can be sure that this is not the last time they hear about Open Legend and Amaurea’s Dawn! In fact you can find already something on the homepage of Open Legend …

We hope you all enjoyed this interreview as much as we did in writing it and we will see other nice projects in a short time!

See you soon.

 

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  1. Pingback: EPK Review 3_part2: OPEN LEGEND, an Open Source RPG to tell Stories of Legend! – Entire Party Killed

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