It’s been a long, long time since I did any serious update concerning Grey Lotus, but I have good reasons. I won’t go into all of them here, but suffice to say that it’s been a rough road. Apparent lack of interest is another factor, of course. Recently I found two torrents distributing it, though, so I figured I may as well put a bit more effort into it once MektonHelper is taken care of.
The biggest problem, though, is the sheer scope of the changes. I thought I should toss out some of the changes underway to both explain why it’s such a big revision, and to see if anyone had any actual opinions on what I’m doing.
I’ve been unhappy with the name Grey Lotus for quite some time now, but it’s been a bear to change it. Not only do all of my friends refer to it that way, but it’s extremely difficult to come up with a name that is descriptive, not generic, and distinctive. It’s all well and good to call it Chronicles of the Sidhe, but nobody can pronounce that and frankly, it’s more about the war against the Kurr’d-ah. I’ve been meaning to post a poll concerning the name here, since I do have a few choices, but… lazy The current frontrunner for a new name is Legacies.
The Magic system is one thing that I’m quite proud of, so the basic concept will be kept. I’m attempting to streamline things a little bit so that it’s easier to understand the process of making and casting spells. I’m still keeping Aspect, but it will be an optional system for those who want it, and it won’t be quite so bookkeeping-intensive. I think the biggest change will be how Backlash is handled. New Magic won’t have a Backlash stat… instead, the spellcasters will take the Backlash as a mental strain value that gives them Fatigue. The Fatigue tracking will also be more vague, so that this way, Fatigue and spellcasting will be as imprecise as wounds… a spellcaster will never know exactly how many more fireballs can be tossed, only that it’s a bigger and bigger risk. Maintaining spells will make resisting Fatigue more difficult, rather than directly reducing from available Fatigue.
Advantages of being from different kingdoms or regions have been eliminated, at least as a free bonus. In some cases, similar abilities can be purchased as special abilities. This also eliminates the overpowered Valtan advantage, though the Prodigy ability will give a more limited version of this. I’ve cut down on the number of kingdoms as well, and gotten rid of the patchwork culture bit in favor of something more realistic. Each region will receive much more detail, though, and have subcultures associated with them.
The biggest change for skills is in the Rating/Dice division. Before, the Rating determined both number of dice rolled, and the base number added to the die roll. Now, Rating and Dice are purchased separately, with Rating determining experience and a raw baseline, and Dice representing how well the character applies what they’ve learned.
Weapons and Combat
AP is probably getting very simplified, as in actual play it’s hard to remember to add it in. It’s one more calculation to worry about, so a good candidate for streamlining. Weapons particularly lethal against certain armors may get a special quality to compensate, as that’s easier to remember. Reach will remain, since it’s an optional system anyway and can be tossed out without skewing game balance too much, but is nice for people who want a touch more realism.
I’m toying with the idea of a more dynamic combat system where attack and defense can be adjusted more freely by the player. It would need tested, however.
Techniques and Schools
Techniques are still around, no worries! Schools will be less associated with nation of origin, though some will still be prevalent in those nations or named after them. Ryantran Blademastery is still Ryantran, etc. Elementalist Schools will have more distinctiveness, and Faerie Magic will have Traditions, which are effectively the same thing.
The current state of Religion is pretty dull and flat. The new setting has a much more fleshed out version. It is still largely monotheistic, but divine favors can be granted by agents of the Creator, similar to praying to an angel or saint. The religion will have two main branches, a Soluman and an Anathasian branch, with several splinter sects within each one. In addition, ‘pagan’ religions will be covered in future releases, and the Fey will have their own versions.
In the old version, some special abilities could only be purchased at character creation. These are now separate from the other advantages and flaws. Tentative names for them are ‘Legacies’ or ‘Birthrights,’ with a tending toward the former since not all of them are passed down through bloodlines. Most likely this will be how you start with Magical Aptitude as well.