We spoke to the creators about this fantastic project
While video games were still thinking of gaining a foothold, tabletop RPGs reigned supreme as the most democratic way to live out their own story. Now, decades later, we are witnessing a real resurgence of RPGs – present even in Big Brother Brazil’s elimination discourse.
Every weekend, streaming sites are invaded by RPG games played by influencers, captivating an increasingly passionate audience. But after watching hours and hours of Critical Role, The Secret in the Forest, or The Goblins’ Guild, you might be dying to embark on your own adventures.
The problem is that the most popular systems are not suitable for beginners at all. But there is one system designed exactly to make learning easier for those just starting out – Tome of Order & Chaos.
Created by game designer Felipe Caravelli and game composer Filipe Silva da Rosa, this Brazilian system leaves you ready to play in just 25 pages. Learning RPG has never been easier! The Legion of Heroes decided to speak to them to better understand how the process made this experience so much more accessible.
A practical system
At first, Order & Chaos – or O&C as it was nicknamed by gamers – was born out of the duo’s simple desire to get back into the habit of playing RPGs. The traditional books that explain the gameplay are very long, so they decided to use their vast background as players to create something more practical.
This baggage began in childhood. Caravelli started playing around the age of 6, encouraged by a neighbor who knew a Pokémon RPG. “He had his own card there, he had the parts and the data. It was the first contact I had, […] I didn’t quite get it, but it already left me… “Gee, that’s cool, man.” It’s different from video games. It’s different from board games, even if it’s similar… ”
This interest remained dormant until I met Filipe Rosa, in an Internet forum. Philip was older and introduced his friend to more complex systems he was familiar with. “Around the age of 13, the first RPG I started playing was Vampire: The Mask, [depois] 3D & T of Pokémon, Storm, D&D 3.0… ”.
At that point, they ended up getting even closer when they started making digital RPGs – similar to Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest. This knowledge came in handy recently when the duo got together to develop a tabletop RPG that required little preparation.
At first it was something they did for themselves, just for fun. They started by analyzing systems they already knew to understand what elements were essential in an RPG. “We had managed to deconstruct some things that were a bit complicated before, or that took time, and we made a really good synergy of those resources that we were creating.” explains Caravelli.
After playing games with friends on a prototype of the system, they realized they had something precious in their hands. Reviews from friends helped refine the book further, understanding what could go on and what needed to come out. After a lot of work, the final result is available for free on the O&C site.
Simple but deep
In today’s society where we’re trained to absorb information ever faster, Tome of Order and Chaos aims to update tabletop RPGs for an audience that has less and less time. “In the process, we started to think about what type of player we could include in the type of game we were developing. […] I could serve a slice of the community [nova] RPGs, mostly beginners… ”Rosa said.
The key to winning over an audience with limited RPG knowledge and more experienced gamers at the same time was to combine simplicity and flexibility. O&C keeps only the most essentials, which any newbie should know, but it brings tools that allow a seasoned master to create new rules that work best for your scenario.
“We placed as a core value a balance, mainly in the combat part, which could be right and that the interpretation of the character was what guided the campaign, on the right – the RPG game session – and not the character’s abilities. , as in D&D for example. . Rosa added.
Dungeons & Dragons is the granddaddy of modern RPGs, but since it’s the oldest it ends up being too complex for new players and requires a lot of preparation for people with a more complicated routine. “Nowadays, D&D books […] ease of many systems to make the game smooth[…], but it is still very plastered, still requires some study on the system. Ours… We tried to simplify it even more, in a way that worked well within the rules. Caravelli said.
O&C was designed to house different fictional universes, depending on the wishes of the players. Rather than limiting its rules to a medieval setting, such as Storm, or apocalyptic, such as Mutant Chronicles, this system can easily work in a variety of contexts – whether it’s futuristic campaigns, your favorite movie, or even with superheroes. “If you want to create a story that mixes Knights of the Zodiacs, with Star Wars and Dragon Ball… If you want to put it there, somehow it will work. Interpretation is the main pillar of the system. “
Creativity is your weapon
Another item that tends to confuse and alienate new players is Complex Magic Systems. Inevitably, it is necessary to describe the limits of what magical powers can accomplish in your system, but O&C has managed to condense hundreds of library pages by categorizing magic into half a dozen types.
There is greater freedom for players to agree with the masters to certain agreements that govern the magical properties of each game, leaving creativity as the only limit for an accomplished wizard. “The main pillar of the magic system was to believe that players and masters will have the ability to describe magic well and that it is compatible with the session in which it is played.” Rosa explained.
So instead of worrying about decorating and pre-selecting a series of specific spells, in addition to remembering the exact situations in which they work, O&C allows players to create unique spells by following the guides in this spells. which is allowed in the game. “We have inserted several models and explained in general how this works for testing, but we have not limited the type of visual and physical effect this event will cause in the game.”
But don’t worry if you’re more into the physical characters, as the combat system was designed to accommodate everyone. One of the biggest challenges was to fit combat into O&C’s simplistic philosophy, especially given the commitment to only using a single d20 to make the game more accessible.
It took a lot of balancing to come up with the effective rules that govern battles, but it was worth it. Today, the system holds up well even to players who decide to compete. “When we talk about player versus player, we need the data to clearly capture the actions of the character. The challenge of using a single data was to translate [o resultado] sometimes as a percentage (calculate success) and sometimes as a sum (calculate damage). “
Start your adventure
After reading the 25 pages of the Basic Book, all you need to start playing is to fill out the Reader Form.
Five attributes have been handpicked to govern the character’s abilities: stamina, skill, intelligence, perception and mastery. It’s easy to deduce what each means in the context of the game, making it easy to adjust them to build your character.
It may seem like a difficult, even intimidating choice. In general, attributes define your character’s ability in any situation, but care has been taken to ensure that they accurately reflect the characteristics of the character. “The attributes chosen say something about the character, but they don’t necessarily define how good or bad the character ends up being.” Your numbers can help, but interpretation is always the priority.
Average values represent an ordinary human being, so expect most characters to begin to approximate the initial values, with as little divergence as possible. After all, no one starts off being very good at what they do. It comes with time.
It is now possible to create all kinds of adventures with the base book available on the Order & Chaos site, but there are even more to come. The duo intend to create new storylines and expansions to more clearly explore popular community themes, but it has not yet been revealed what the next step is for this adventure.
The way is to keep following the project here at Legião dos Heroes, as well as on O&C Instagram, Twitter or Facebook, to always be up to date with the news.
While we still can’t get together in person, learn the rules of Order & Chaos, gather your friends in a virtual room, and get ready to experience legendary adventures in this RPG system accessible to all audiences.