Topic: Base for Rules System  (Read 6622 times)


« on: December 28, 2018, 05:11:17 PM »
Perhaps I am wrong, but I have noticed heavy similarities in the rules system between URW and a (unfortunately less known) tabletop RPG system called "Harnmaster".

Is there any basis for this, or is this just a (happy) coincidence?
« Last Edit: December 28, 2018, 05:13:41 PM by Xrazlyn »


« Reply #1 on: December 28, 2018, 06:49:16 PM »
I believe it has been mentioned in the past that the UrW rules are based on Hârn, although I have no direct knowledge myself.

Ara D.

« Reply #2 on: December 28, 2018, 08:25:44 PM »
We have rules? ;)

First rule of UrW: Stay alive
Second rule of UrW: Don't die
Third rule of UrW: You will die


« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2018, 04:34:16 AM »
UnReal World combat mechanics are greatly inspired by HarnMaster roleplaying system, but seriously customized and tweaked further over the years.


« Reply #4 on: December 29, 2018, 10:30:22 AM »
URW is based on Harnmaster? That's cool - we tried that system back in the 90s, but it never really got off the ground, as we found the system to get in the way of roleplaying (same thing happened with Rolemaster as well - too many tables to roll on). So we ended up using the RuneQuest system with the Hârn sourcebooks, and that worked a treat. Now that I think of it, the Hârn vibe is obvious - that system had the greatest sourcebooks, and IIRC, Orbaal felt a lot like URW...

Dungeon Smash

« Reply #5 on: January 01, 2019, 01:26:55 AM »
Harn was (relatively) quite a bit more popular when URW began its development.  It's hard to remember for some people, but roleplaying back in the 80's/early 90's was MUCH more rules-heavy than today's games.  After all... there wasn't anything else to do, with no internet and few distractions besides reading.  If you were a socially-awkward misfit (like myself), it wasn't too crazy to spend hours poring over complex and byzantine systems, memorizing rules, and finally playing with other like-minded individuals.  Sessions might last for 8 hours or more, and if a ruleset required extra time, that was sometimes considered a good thing!  Especially if it added more realism.  Anyway, those systems were honestly far more suited to a computer program... and luckily, we have games like URW now as a result!


« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2019, 07:42:19 PM »
Yes the core of the rules is Harn, I still play it every week(tonight is Harn night!). It is funny though, to keep selling books CG  have gone through generations of Harn adding stuff etc. i think the company split a decade ago into two companies that both keep selling. But the fundamentals are identical and I think still the best.  I spotted some changes Sami made to automate it and I remember liking some of them, do not recall which they were.
Yes the silly tables in Role
But Harn itself is not so complex, just the issue of defense not being passive and being based on skills which are based on attributes training and development(like all skills). And armour is in layers. Given those design concepts, Harn is about as simple as it can be.
I have turned some of my Harn buddies onto URW over the years, they find it to complex, lol.

Dungeon Smash

« Reply #7 on: January 10, 2019, 09:02:03 PM »
I agree, I never played Harn because I couldn't afford all the books... and it was hard to source them back in the day.  I was a RuneQuest player, I still love RuneQuest <3

R.I.P. to Greg Stafford