Classic Fantasy is Coming to the Legend System
Many of you know me as the author of Chaosium's BRP Classic Fantasy Monograph.
For the last year I have been converting and expanding Classic Fantasy to the Legend system. It's still maybe a year away from completion but enough has been finished that I figured I would post about it.
What is Classic Fantasy?
Classic Fantasy is a way of playing the Legend RPG that better mimics pre-third edition D&D, primarily 1st ed. AD&D to be precise. Included are all the classic player races and classes, spells, monsters, etc. It is a standalone product that is completely self contained. All of the rules to play will be found in the three core books, yet Classic Fantasy will remain 100% compatible with the rest of the Legend line, and maybe 80-90% compatible with other BRP products.
How does Classic Fantasy differ from Legend?
For the most part, Classic Fantasy uses the entirety of the Legend system without significant change. However some changes are made to better reflect the original source material. The most obvious is the use of classes. In Classic Fantasy, a "Class" is simply a Legend "Profession" with special abilities that reflect the class abilities found in AD&D; things like the fighter's weapon mastery, the clerics ability to "turn undead, demons, and devils", and the thieves backstab proficiency.
However, after character generation, for the most part the player is able to develop his character in whatever direction he chooses.
Classic Fantasy introduces an alignment system. However, unlike AD&D, these alignments do not dictate how you must play your character, instead, how you play your character dictates your alignment.
One change from Legend is Skill Advancements. The BRP fan base seems equally split on whether they prefer Skill Advancement Awards, or Skill Check Boxes. I happen to prefer the latter and the book is being written to reflect this. Assuming that there is space to include it, I will include rules for Advancement Awards as an option.
Finally, Classic Fantasy introduces a different magic system from those proposed in Legend. It uses familiar terms such as duration, magnitude, etc. and works very similar in many ways to the other systems, however increasing the spells magnitude will typically grant ALL the benefits of casting the spell at a higher level in AD&D. For example, increasing a spell by a single level of magnitude may increase its range, duration, and damage, dependent upon the spell in question. This allows the spell to better scale as its AD&D counterpart.
The spell is NOT forgotten however. :)
What is being included in the "conversion"?
Unlike the original BRP version of Classic Fantasy where I faced significant space limitations, this version will be including every spell from the 1st ed. AD&D Players Handbook and every monster from the 1st. ed. Monster Manual (that I'm allowed to use according to the OGL), as well as a near-complete conversion of magic items.
Because of this, Classic Fantasy will likely be several smaller books. More than likely a Player's Book, a Game Master's Book, and a Monster Book. One BIG book isn't out of the question however.
How far along are you?
Here is an overview of the progress to date.
Done with the exception of spells, of which I have only finished about 20-25% of them. There are literately hundreds of spells.
Game Master's Book
About 80% finished. Not counting magic items.
Only about 40% finished, should be over 300 monsters.
Who is going to publish it?
I'm not even thinking about this yet. I have had two different publishers contact me about the prospect, but I'm not yet ready to commit. I may even self-publish. This is something I work on in my spare time, a little every day, but publishers mean deadlines and I may not make them. So I figured when the books are written, but before layout has begun, at that point I'll get more serious about negotiating with interested parties. Like I said, self-publishing is a tempting option.
Are you going to release the books as you finish them or when their are ALL done?
When they are ALL done. That way as I work on the later books and realize I need to change something in the Players Book I can do it without having to release addenda.
Is there anywhere else I can find out more about the new version of Classic Fantasy?
Yes there is actually, I have just created a new Yahoo group just for the Legend version at...
I usually post about the progress of Legend: Classic Fantasy there before posting anywhere else and your welcome to join. I already posted a copy of the Legend: Classic Fantasy Character Sheet, some example characters, and a write-up of the Fighter character class.
Anyway, there it is. I can't give any idea as to when it will be ready. It will take time. I have a small cadre of outside playtesters going over it as well as my own group and things are looking well so far.
Thanks for taking the time to read this.