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Modular: Chaosium Announces New Version of RuneQuest

Monday, April 10th, 2017 | Posted by John ONeill

Runequest Quickstart Free RPG Day-small

Chaosium announced last week that a new version of its classic RPG will be released by Christmas 2017.

The new edition of the iconic roleplaying game RuneQuest will be formally known as RuneQuest: Roleplaying in Glorantha, or ‘RQG‘ for short, Chaosium announced today… RQG is built off the chassis of the acclaimed RuneQuest 2nd Edition (1980). This enables RQG to be compatible with RuneQuest Classic, the updated reprints of the RQ2 line which Chaosium recently kickstarted to great success.

“Fans had been referring to the new rules variously as ‘RQ4‘ and ‘RQ7‘”, said Chaosium creative director Jeff Richard, “But our new game is simply not a layer atop the Avalon Hill edition (RQ3) or the Mongoose variants that came after that. Nor is it built from the version Design Mechanism produced under license (RQ6). So, rather than try to give the new edition a number, calling it ‘RQG‘ neatly avoids any confusion…”

The products scheduled for 2017 release are the RuneQuest: Roleplaying in Glorantha core rules, a Gloranthan Bestiary, and a scenarios book featuring adventures by game design legends Steve Perrin (RQ1 & 2), Ken Rolston (RQ3‘s ‘rune czar’, Morrowwind, Elder Scrolls), Chris Klug (DragonQuest II, James Bond 007 RPG) and the ‘grand shaman of gaming’ himself Greg Stafford… The first new RQG product is the RuneQuest Quickstart, which will be available in June for Free RPG Day and at the Chaosium website from July 1, 2017.

The products will not be kickstarted. The Art for the RuneQuest Quickstart is by Andrey Fetisov; old-school gamers will recognize it as an homage to Luise Perrine’s much-loved cover for the classic 2nd edition.

Pavis Gateway to Adventure-smallThree years ago, we covered the excellent Design Mechanism RuneQuest supplements produced in support of the 6th Edition rules by Pete Nash and Lawrence Whitaker; more recently we’ve examined a handful of other supplements as well, including the stellar Pavis: Gateway to Adventure by Moon Design, and the original Borderlands boxed set.

Our previous RuneQuest and Glorantha coverage includes:

Chaosium’s Borderlands: Can Playing RPGs Really Make You a Billionaire?
Pavis – Gateway to Adventure: The Classic RPG City is Back! (Part One) by Sarah Newton
Pavis – Gateway to Adventure: The Classic RPG City is Back! (Part Two) by Sarah Newton
The Guide to Glorantha Kickstarter by Sarah Newton
Monster Island by Pete Nash & Friends
The Other Appendix N by James Maliszewski
Monster Island by Howard Andrew Jones
Appendix N: Carrying on the Flame by Pete Nash
Choice of the Petal Throne by James Maliszewski
RuneQuest 6 by Pete Nash and Lawrence Whitaker
RuneQuest: Korantia and Mythic Britain by Howard Andrew Jones

See all of our recent Game coverage here.

8 Comments »

  1. Ah, the classic Runequest cover (which appeared on the 1st edition, as a monotint), lovingly described as “A somnolent guest at a Marquis de Sade masquerade feeding a tortilla chip to an oversized Gila monster”. Good times, good times!

    Comment by Eugene R. - April 10, 2017 9:37 pm

  2. I love that description.

    Comment by John ONeill - April 10, 2017 9:45 pm

  3. My group is still very happy with RQ6 (now Mythras). Honestly can’t be bothered with the capital outlay and conversion. Actually starting to get RQ version fatigue.

    I will likely get criticised for this but I perceive this version (and I suppose the never published RQ4 Adventures in Glorantha circa late 1990’s) to be an attempt for players to recapture some of the wonder of their past. Well I suppose most retro games, dungeon crawls classics etc. Problem is most of the players who recall the wonder of when they began gaming cannot recreate it as it is a part of their youth and the world and expectations have moved on. So capitalising on this nostalgia does of course make sense but I also think some players will invariably be left disappointed, bemoaning the new version missed the mark, notwithstanding the efforts of Messrs Perrin, Stafford et al.

    Comment by Tiberius - April 11, 2017 2:28 am

  4. I think I missed the right moment to develop nostalgia for Runequest.

    My main recollection of it from the 90s is that a starting character could be killed by a diffident sheep — an assertion my college gaming group tested and proved by means of actual sheep combat.

    Comment by Sarah Avery - April 12, 2017 1:20 am

  5. So true Sarah. The warning we always gave new players who had some D&D experience was “this game is lethal, if you don’t like your character dying consider every move you make carefully”. Also started in 1990s with RQ3 Avalon hill, while I enjoyed the world of glorantha and some of the cool ideas etc I never really “got” it. I suppose we used RQ more for the system we loved than the world that spawned the system.

    Comment by Tiberius - April 12, 2017 1:58 am

  6. I’m looking forward to seeing what old masters like Steve Perrin and Ken Rolston are going to do with this material.

    I refuse to contemplate just what your college gaming group was doing with those sheep, Ms. Avery. Unless it involves Cthulhu, in which case anything goes.

    Comment by John E. Boyle - April 14, 2017 11:00 pm

  7. Mostly we were getting head-butted to death by the sheep.

    For Call of Cthulhu, we’d break into the psychology building — that’s its own kind of perfect — and play in a faculty lounge that looked like exactly the kind of beautifully appointed room where Lovecraft’s characters would have read their arcane tomes while losing their minds. We’d have to play by low light so as not to get caught by campus security. Good times.

    Comment by Sarah Avery - April 15, 2017 9:51 pm

  8. What a perfect setting for Call of Cthulhu! Talk about atmosphere!

    Comment by John E. Boyle - April 16, 2017 3:38 am


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