After this weekend's game, we found that there were still a lot of niggling annoyances with the rules. So I took it upon myself to get it updated (again) and well, I think it's nearing the stage where I can finally give it a 1st Edition stamp.
You can get the updated version of Book of the Arbitrator right here.
Apart from updating Book of the Arbitrator then I've also been working on World Guide: Refuge's End and more specifically I've been working on some campaign rules which I've included in this here post.
However, it is important for me to note that these campaign rules are not specifically tied to Refuge's End but could be used for any campaign really (and were greatly inspired by the Baron's Blog and their Medieval Warfare campaign rules). However, they are still a work in progress and as such then any input and comments are more than welcome!
Changes to Book of the Arbitrator 1.3
- Improved Activation Sequence
I finally gave in! The Initiative-based activation sequence was just more trouble than it was worth in the end. Instead it has now been replaced by a more 'modern' alternate activation system, which basically means that players alternate between activating their units. The biggest difference is that now players may choose, for themselves, which units to activate!
- Reworked Vehicle Section
First off, I changed the Vehicle damage section a bit which now allows weapons some chance of glancing vehicles. So now Lasguns are no longer unable to shoot an average car to bits and pieces.
Furthermore, the various armor values of vehicles have been changed to reflect the change made; I'm still working on an "armor value translation" system. It'll get there, eventually!
- Reworked Weapons Section
This was a basic overhaul of the weapon firing modes; there were simply too many die rolls involved in firing a heavy weapon on autofire, along with other alterations.
I'm also working on a "Generic Weapon List" which will give the stats for a generic Bolt Gun, Lasgun, Plasma Gun etc. The idea is then to let players choose, for themselves if they want a specific pattern of a weapon or simply just a generic weapon. Incidently, this also makes it a lot easier to design scenarios for henchmen.
- Wounds and the Injury Roll
And finally, another point where I gave in; the injury roll is back! After having played a couple of games with multiwound characters I simply had to reinsert the injury roll; multiwound units are a bit of a pain to deal with and, point in fact, the injury rules just work. Happy now, Col. Kane? ;)
Grand Campaign Rules for Book of the Arbitrator
Note: These rules have been written for my rather ecclectic gaming groups purposes; we have a very scattered and random attendence which means that a grand campaign, were each players sticks to one faction forever and ever are rather difficult to set up.
The Grand Campaign is a system designed to ease both story telling and the complex machinations of a power struggle on an Imperial Planet or similar, although it could be used for any given setting (or indeed any given ruleset really).
In order to play a Grand Campaign, then you'll need to establish a story or a setting for the campaign which must include at least two or more factions, and at least a couple of players for the campaign as well.
The Grand Campaign
When setting up a grand campaign, choose a storyline or a setting (in my case I'm using Refuge's End as my setting). This storyline must include at least two factions, but can include many, many more. The Grand Campaign is similar, in structure, to Season Story Archs; to use an equivilant term.
Each of the factions are vying for influence or control; either in order to subdue their enemy, to establish themselves as ruler of the planet or simply to gather as much income as possible. This is simulated by using Influence Points.
The Grand Campaign runs for as long as you wish; but it is suggested to end a Grand Campaign once a faction has reached 10 Influence Points.
In order for players to gather these influence points, then they have to participate in a campaign. Either a fully fledge, multi-week territorial map campaign; or just a short and intense three-scenario-narrative-campaign. In any case, at the end of this campaign, then players are awarded the following influence points:
Not showing up; only part of half the campaign: 0 points
Playing at the very least half of the campaign: 1 point
Winning the campaign: +1 point
(Note: I still need ideas for other ways of getting these points.)
These points must now be assigned to any faction that are included within the Grand Campaign, at the individual players discretion. He may assign the points to either the faction he played during the campaign or any other faction which he thinks has what it takes to win the Grand Campaign.
Each point spent on a faction by a player, must be noted down for that player only. These influence points will grant him some special tools and abilities in forth coming campaigns, provided that he plays a game with a faction that he has given influence points.
(Note: Ideas on what benefits could be gained from giving Influence Points to a faction would be very welcome! Also, note that the rules are left vague so that they can suit each individual Arbitator's needs.)
The Arbitrator then organizes either a campaign or a bigger skirmish; prepares the scenario/campaign and then invites people to that campaign. Once the campaign ends, players will then have recieved Influence Points which they can spend on furthering any Faction.
Once a faction reaches 10 or more Influence Points, that faction has established itself as a powerhouse and will thus win the grand campaign.
Notes for the Arbitrator
It is suggested to use the Influence Points as a gauge to see which sort of match up the various players are interested in. The more Influence Points a faction has, the more it will become active in the greater scheme of things.
If a player, however, wants to continue using a faction, even though it has little to no influence, then allow him to do so - these rules are, after all only guidelines and should be used as a tool in order to make it easier for the Arbitrator to design and run campaigns.
+++ End Transmission +++
Well, that's it for now. Hopefully I didn't drone all of my readers to sleep.
As stated, then these are to be considered pure musings right now and are definately not set in stone. I'm still looking for inspiration and ideas on how to merge a narrative story driven campaign with an eccelctic gaming group which is not tied to any single player (as we are rarely in full attendance) and must also keep it fun when involving multiple players.
If you have a suggestion, idea or simply just a comment - then don't hesitate to write!