Thursday, December 6, 2012

GURPS Dungeon Fantasy buying order

If you ever wondered what you'd need, in what order, to get into GURPS Dungeon Fantasy, the line editor lays it out right here.

Lots of books, yes (16 counting the monster book, 17 with the adventure), plus the Basic Set and Magic, but lots of the supplements are inexpensive. If you bought the lot it would only be $138.83 for all of them. And as Sean Punch points out, you don't need all of them. Or even really half of them.

15 comments:

  1. and this is why i don't play gurps

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Forgive me for intruding, but... I presume the objection is related to a perceived "need" for too many books?

      First... all you really need is Basic Set. That's two hard back books for 4th edition.... After that you might have a yen to get something that caters to your particular genre preference. Usually that's going to be either Martial Arts or High Tech or whatever-- but it's optional. If you want to do fantasy gaming, you have three options: roll-your-own setting with GURPS Fantasy, use the GURPS Banestorm setting, or do gonzo old school with however much of the GURPS Dungeon Fantasy line you want to do.

      I enjoy using my GURPS supplements, but in the course of play, I see that I never "needed" them they way I thought I would. It's usually just some good chrome here and there to make the game more tightly emulate things without forcing me to hand wave so much. Valuable, but not essential.

      Delete
    2. That's what I'm thinking - "I need 16 books?" - No, you don't. The GM doesn't need them all for a DF game, anymore than you need the PHB, DMG, MM, FF, MM2, and D&DG books to run AD&D. They are there if you need them.

      To play DF, all you need is DF1 plus Basic Set: Characters (and you can get by with GURPS Lite!). You might want Campaigns and DF3 and DF11, but you don't need them. GURPS Magic is needed for spellcasters, too. Some of my players have exactly zero books.

      To GM it, you need only a couple more books, which Sean Punch points out. You can use all of them if you want, but you don't need them. If you have Basic Set, all you need to run DF is a couple books.

      Not to be too defensive, I hope, but this post is meant for folks who think "GURPS Dungeon Fantasy looks cool, but there are a lot of books - which ones do I need if I want to play?" I linked to an answer explains what they all do and when you might need them. That's really all.

      I'm sympathetic to the "I want a one book system" folks, but I don't know any GMs or serious players who only have one book . . .

      Delete
    3. Honestly, in order to play anything GURPS related, you only really need the Basic set. The rest of the books are merely worked examples and tips, much like "The Complete [fill in the blank]" books in D&D. Want to add Psionics to your campaign? There's a few books to help out. Want a band of clerics with henchmen? There's two more books. And few of the books have many dependencies outside of the core rulebooks. You could play a perfectly fine Fantasy game with just the Fantasy supplement and a handful of the spells from the Basic book. And when you're done, you can play a perfectly fine game of any other genre as well.

      Delete
    4. Most of the DF supplements are of the "worked example" model. For a game that gets trashed a lot because you have to do everything yourself, trashing it because someone went out and wrote a book to help you NOT have to do that is . . . well, inevitable, I suppose. :-)

      Delete
    5. The "GURPS has too many books" and "GURPS makes you do it all yourself" memes? I just assume they aren't the same people.

      The "too many books" = "too complicated" meme is odd, though, since I don't think that the number of books determines complexity.

      Delete
    6. To echo everyone, you don't need much to play. Most of my players don't have any books. One has Basic Set: Characters, another has just DF 12: Ninjas, another has just Powers: Divine Favor (which we use for clerical magic). I think that two have downloaded the free GURPS Lite. The GM might need more, but most GMs end up buying more books with any system.

      In any case, it isn't as if I bought everything at once. I got DF 13: Loadouts when I was running a science fiction campaign in order to see how the loadouts were put together for my own home-brewed campaign in a different genre. I got DF 1 and 2 when contemplating a campaign using the series. I got DF 3 when I was sure I was going to run such a campaign. The rest I've picked up as I wanted something to read. These books are released on such a schedule that you aren't going to be breaking the bank if you buy them at release. I spent as much on magazines over the same time period. The threshold for entry gets more imposing as time goes by, I guess, but only if you think you want all the books.

      Delete
  2. The only way GURPS DF would appeal to non-GURPS people is if the books were compiled in books liked the AD&D Player's Handbook and Dungeon Master's Guide. In my experience new players get lost trying to create PCs if they have to leaf through a lot of different books. It is better if all of the information for character creation is one place and called the Player's Handbook or something similar. It should be self-contained and not need to have the GURPS Basic set, all of the Advantages, Disadvantages and skills should be explained in a way that is relevant to GURPS Dungeon Fantasy. GURPS Magic is ok but many troublesome spells need some modification. The Dungeon Master's Guide would need more DF material for it to sell well however. There would need to be some more information on dungeon creation and maybe some tables for random monsters and treasures.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. GURPS may be a less lean. Maybe he can be not summarized in just one book with everything needed to roll a fantastic campaign. But the system is not limited in fantasy scope. In most cases i do not have to worry about inventing a house rule to cover any case - and if i want, i can do too. To New players are easiest to build a character referring only one book? yes. But with a good game master a GURPS player will not have more difficulty in create it as a DnD player. Perhaps this is the greatest fault of GURPS, he needs a more competent GM to give up with its infinite possibilities.

      Delete
    2. @b-dog: I agree with you there - I'd love a "GURPS Dungeon Fantasy Player's Book" with everything in it. But I just don't see how it's economically possible. They'd need everybody who bought DF1 to buy this to even approach breaking even on it. Probably many more. But I'd love to have one.

      @Doutor Bacon: I wouldn't say you need a more competent GM. You need a competent GM in any system. It's just that GURPS can trip you up in places that other game systems don't, so you need to learn where.

      Delete
    3. Isn't modern D&D at least as bad, though? I mean it starts off all right with the (huge expensive) PH/DMG, but soon enough there's a PH2 and other supplements, and you still end up looking through a bunch of books to pick your character... except they were all really expensive books.

      Delete
    4. It compares very well to modern D&D. It compares pretty well to AD&D, too, based on my collection of official, required stuff.

      The comparison to retroclones is still pretty good. You only need a free download to get the basic rules for most of them, but if you wanted all the Labyrinth Lord compatible stuff, it would cost more than the whole DF line and the two Basic Set books. GURPS does have a little buy in, but most game systems do.

      I regard the large amount of books as a plus - they are there if I need them. Better a well supported game line than a paucity of supplements, in my opinion.

      Delete
  3. I think you are right that a Player's Handbook would be difficult to swing but I believe it would good for the players to have a book to look at while creating PCs. Players mostly want the cool stuff that goes into creating their PCs that is laid out in an easy to follow format. Having a lot of different books to look through makes the players become bored. Sure I usually just ask them what they want and then fill out the template for them but I feel the players are not as involved in their character creation as I would like. When I used to play AD&D I used to enjoy looking through the Player's Handbook to find the type of PC and spells I thought would cool to have. With the way GURPS DF is set up, players just let me pick what I think is best and so the PCs do not really belong to them the way AD&D my characters seemed to belong to me.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I used to make chargen the first session, so that all the players could consult one another and make sure that they covered the niches the campaign called for. I have decided that it is better to meet with players individually to create characters. It gives us more time to look things up, answer questions, and so on without my attention being too divided. If I can't find room in someone's schedule to meet for this, I question whether they can really commit to the game.

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...