Produced by Cakebread & Walton and Cubicle 7 there is another free RPG system available for download : Renaissance. On the same base as Runequest and Legend is designed for historical and fantasy gaming in the age of black powder weapons.
Renaissance is a free RPG system intended to be able to run several different historical and fantasy campaigns, mostly in the age of black powder weapons. Based on Newt Newport’s OpenQuest, it’s created on the same vein as the previusly reviewed Legend and RuneQuest, but with several differences. It’s already known, that Cakeward & Walton are building their new Clockwork & Chivalry 2ed on this new system.
So for those who know the previous titles Renaissence provided familiar mechanics: d100 based checks, a grim and gritty combat system, professions, backgrounds, and so on.
It’s also include two different kinds of magic: battle alchemy (first appeared on Clockwork & Chivalry 1st edition) and revised and streamlined rules for witchcraft (originated from the Divers & Sundry suplement), as well as an extended list of equipment, and factions.
I think the developers successfully adapted the d100 system for the setting, from simple things as equipments to more elaborate things like religious factions and conversion.
Compared to Legend and Runequest the combat is somewhat simpler, but still deadly. There are no combat manuevres, and there is an overall HP instead of HP/body part, which could be a plus for those who want a simpler system. Body parts only come to play with serious wounds and grave wounds, when we must randomize the effect, hovewer I’m not completey sure what happen, is somebody receive two grave wounds on the same part.
For factions, it’s an interesting choice that above religious and political groups, and easily adjustable sample factions (like gangs) you may also choose some kind of self-interest. You may even match your self-interest against religious fanatics or political figures in a rightousness contest.
I think the rules for the presumed setting are all in place, like black power weapons, artillery and alchemy. It’s also good, that we receive several hints about what equipment and weapons are used by the diferent types of military units in the period.
In the end, it’s again a very good RPG system for free, which I could recommend for potential players.
You may download the rues here, if you are interested : Renaissance download
Zoltán “Cain” Mészáros