Arkyn
 member, 698 posts
 ISO: WWII game; Star Wars
 Solo Pathfinder/Kingmaker
Tue 20 Jul 2021
at 12:39
Middle Earth game system
Whatís the best one, based on Content, Approachability, & Ease?

Thereís setting specific systems, like MERP and One Ring
Thereís systems that everyone knows, like GURPS et. al. that modify simply
Thereís systems that while theyíd have to be heavily modified, are easy, like D&D

Then thereís so many other variants like Savage Worlds, PbtA, and others.

I just want to tell a story (well, two stories, really) but players and GMs alike need a framework.

Thoughts?
pdboddy
 supporter, 708 posts
 EST/EDT [GMT-5/GMT-4]
Tue 20 Jul 2021
at 12:42
Middle Earth game system
If everyone knows the system, MERP and One Ring both work well.  MERP is hilariously awesome with the crit tables.

But if playpers have more familiarity with other systems like GURPS or D&D, go with those systems.
deadtotheworld22
 member, 140 posts
Tue 20 Jul 2021
at 13:04
Middle Earth game system
Depends a lot on how much structure you want and what your game is going to be like - if you just want something that puts some numbers behind your characters so they don't end up taking a mile and one-hitting a Balrog, then you can probably find something rules-lite or homebrewed which will do you fine just to serve as that limitation, but means you can focus on the roleplaying aspect.

I think you've hit the nail on the head with the main issues with using the other systems, which is accessability vs. suitability.

I'm not sure how well MERP holds up nowadays, and you run the risk of players not owning/ beingconfident with systems like One Ring, but if you can get them to buy in, you'll probably save yourself a lot of work in the long run.

On the flip side, a lot of people will know how to play 5e but unless you're using something like Adventures in Middle Earth (which runs into the problems above), then there's a risk that you dilute a lot of the Tolkein-ness of the setting by having stand ins for X, annoying your players by limiting their options (especially around magic), or having to literally rewrite the entire book to make sure it fits.

All in all, it's probably your judgement call about what you want to run and how much resource you're willing to put into it (be it cost or time).
Rogue Leader
 member, 36 posts
 Standing by.
Tue 20 Jul 2021
at 13:08
Middle Earth game system
For what it's worth, I have Decipher's Lord of the Rings RPG and love the CODA rules system, so will always throw my hat into the ring for that.
Alyse
 member, 760 posts
 Pretty, witty, and gay
 [married since 2011!]
Tue 20 Jul 2021
at 14:39
Middle Earth game system
The One Ring is my personal favorite.
kbdevil1a
 member, 179 posts
Tue 20 Jul 2021
at 14:49
Middle Earth game system
Adventures in Middle Earth for 5e is pretty good in my experience
Jarodemo
 member, 939 posts
 My hovercraft
 is full of eels
Tue 20 Jul 2021
at 16:57
Middle Earth game system
I think whichever system you choose you will find players who are interested. Some will like the system and want to join, some not like it but will join anyway, and others wonít join. But in the end you will find a pool of enough players to make it worthwhile.

Whatís really important is choosing a system that YOU like and want to use. If you lose a player or two, not a problem, but if the GM folds, game over man!

(Having said all that, I like the 5e AME rules and I also have the One Ring PHB but have never played it).
Frili
 member, 255 posts
Tue 20 Jul 2021
at 17:18
Middle Earth game system
In reply to Arkyn (msg # 1):

If story is the only reason or intent you might want to check out Microscope by Ben Robbins. Iím currently also having a blast playing with
The Pool.
DarkTraveller
 member, 58 posts
Tue 20 Jul 2021
at 21:14
Middle Earth game system
I spent nearly a decade running monthly games of The One Ring and having owned MERP, and Decipher's Lord of the Rings RPG, I feel like TOR is the closest to achieving the feeling of Middle-Earth as seen in The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings. My players almost unanimously loved it as well (there were some rules related stumbling blocks in the earlier days but we were all new too it so it made sense later once we understood things better) and even though it's been about two years since our last game they're all eagerly awaiting the release of the second edition currently in development.

In terms of current content it starts 5 years after The Hobbit with four adventure sets (each made of 7 linked adventures) one set in Wilderland proper, one set in Eregion, one set in Rohan, and the last set in the Dalelands. There is an epic campaign that covers 30 years as the darkness of Dol Guldur grows to try and reclaim Mirkwood for the Enemy. There are region books describing Wilderland and Mirkwood, Rivendell, the Breelands, Rohan, Dale and Erebor (with dozens of NPCs for the forces of Light and Shadow).

The new edition is moving the starting timeline forward about... 30ish years IIRC and will start off around the Shire and Eregion with a long awaited supplement on Moria in development.

I have a lot more I could say about TOR but probably the best I can say is that it is undeniably my favorite take on Middle-Earth in a TTRPG format and feels most like something that Tolkien would have fully endorsed were he alive.
Arkyn
 member, 699 posts
 ISO: WWII game; Star Wars
 Solo Pathfinder/Kingmaker
Tue 20 Jul 2021
at 21:20
Middle Earth game system
Iíll take a look at all these thx team!!
locojedi
 member, 199 posts
Wed 21 Jul 2021
at 06:16
Middle Earth game system
TOR certainly captures the "feel" of Middle-Earth and isn't hard to learn. Check the online character generator/sheet for ease...

http://azrapse.es/tor/sheet.html
Arkyn
 member, 701 posts
 ISO: WWII game; Star Wars
 Solo Pathfinder/Kingmaker
Wed 21 Jul 2021
at 23:15
Middle Earth game system
Are TOR (The One Ring, pub. 2011) and AIME and (Adventures in Middle Earth, pub. 2016) the same?  Because _SO_ much of the text is the same.  Some of the same people, but...

too many samesies.

Am reading them both atm.  At first blush, I think I prefer the AIME's connectedness to 5e though I am very undecided.
DarkTraveller
 member, 59 posts
Wed 21 Jul 2021
at 23:21
Middle Earth game system
In reply to Arkyn (msg # 12):

AIME is the 5e version of TOR. As far as I'm aware, all the books from TOR were translated for 5e and I think (not 100%) that they are going to continue releasing AIME when TOR 2.0 releases.
Arkyn
 member, 702 posts
 ISO: WWII game; Star Wars
 Solo Pathfinder/Kingmaker
Wed 21 Jul 2021
at 23:24
Middle Earth game system
Ah, got it. Thanks.  I've been reading that TOR won't release 2.0?
DarkTraveller
 member, 60 posts
Wed 21 Jul 2021
at 23:42
Middle Earth game system
2.0 was kickstarted a few months ago, it's currently being worked on:

THE ONE RINGô Roleplaying Game, Second Edition, via @Kickstarter https://www.kickstarter.com/pr...ndroid_project_share
Gatecrasher
 member, 75 posts
Thu 22 Jul 2021
at 03:16
Re: Middle Earth game system
DarkTraveller:
2.0 was kickstarted a few months ago, it's currently being worked on:

THE ONE RINGô Roleplaying Game, Second Edition, via @Kickstarter https://www.kickstarter.com/pr...ndroid_project_share

And if you backed the KS, the Alpha version of the rules is outÖ
DarkTraveller
 member, 61 posts
Thu 22 Jul 2021
at 03:53
Re: Middle Earth game system
In reply to Gatecrasher (msg # 16):

I should probably check for that :)
Andhaira
 member, 562 posts
Thu 22 Jul 2021
at 09:14
Re: Middle Earth game system
Arkyn:
Whatís the best one, based on Content, Approachability, & Ease?

Thereís setting specific systems, like MERP and One Ring

I just want to tell a story (well, two stories, really) but players and GMs alike need a framework.

Thoughts?


There is also the recently released Against the Darkmaster, which is an upgraded version of MERP. It's really good.
Arkyn
 member, 703 posts
 ISO: WWII game; Star Wars
 Solo Pathfinder/Kingmaker
Thu 22 Jul 2021
at 14:15
Re: Middle Earth game system
There's a lot going on with these systems.  Again, at first blush with Against the DarkMaster...it's def. my 4th or 5th choice - with AIME, TOR, MERP and GURPS ahead of it.

I'm experimenting with the character creation in AIME rn.  While working, of course, but like geeze, c'mon people, I'm trying to play a game here!
darknash
 member, 164 posts
Mon 16 Aug 2021
at 21:09
Re: Middle Earth game system
Pure content, MERP. Its Rolemaster lite so rules heavy, and its OOP but you can find material and players out there.

Personally, for the others, I've looked at The One Ring and found it lacking.
Arkyn
 member, 704 posts
 Dedicated player
 Occasional GM
Mon 16 Aug 2021
at 21:19
Re: Middle Earth game system
Iím a RM player from the 90ís so I love me some RM (and MERP) of course.  Iím not sure I have it in me to manage the mechanics in any format, but pbp even less so.

Iím still considering game and system tho so no need to set stuff on fire as yet.
darknash
 member, 165 posts
Mon 16 Aug 2021
at 21:22
Re: Middle Earth game system
I would never set anything on fire.::Smiles:: Only voiced a personal opinion to a semi-broad question.
PCO.Spvnky
 member, 485 posts
Mon 16 Aug 2021
at 22:22
Re: Middle Earth game system
I think the One Ring was an amazing system, :)
Arkyn
 member, 705 posts
 Dedicated player
 Occasional GM
Mon 16 Aug 2021
at 22:23
Re: Middle Earth game system
Oh hey - no I meant that i didnít want to get people fired up for nothing.  Im still at least a month away from putting up even an IC for a middle earth game.  I used to run amazing RM campaigns, but I literally needed computer systems to do so and not get bogged down in combat and that was FTF games.  I canít imagine how that would go in pbp games.

Anyway, yah, def. love MERP; all the right feels, and no doubt there are players out thereÖsomewhere. But Iím still a bit away from it.  I need to home-solo playtest AIME, which so far is my front runner; itís the MERP is to RM what AIME is to 5e.  Mechanics same but setting independent.  Iíll be back here when I make a decision for sure.