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Lejendary Adventure revisited

Fri Jan 31, 2014 10:10 pm

So, when I first got into C&C I also picked up the Lejendary Adventure Essentials PDFs. It sort of irked me that I didn't have a complete game (or more like, I wasn't sure if I had one.) I never ended up running it, but not terribly long ago I picked up a game that is remarkably similar on LuLu called Perilous Journeys, which did seem to have everything needed to play and eased up on some of the terminology that was off-putting in LA.

Today I received
The Lejendary Rules
Lejend Master's Lore Premier Edition
Beasts of Lejend Cyclopedia of Creatures
Screen

all by Hekaforge or Trigee. Looking through them, on one hand you can see why it would be off-putting; to a cynical reader it seems clear that Gary was in opposite-land trying to do whatever D&D didn't. He wouldn't have wasted his time on this I think, however, if he didn't think he had a good idea to run with.

And it does look like a pretty good idea. I like the system of complex characters and simple monsters to make things easier on the Lejend Master. The powers listed get some of their Vancian mystique back after years of becoming too familiar with the D&D spells. In a lot of cases the deliberate departure from D&D by a guy who knows the rules enough to break them seems to work.

It's a shame this stuff will never see the light of day on a commercial scale again, but of course it doesn't stop me from playing it. The materials are out there on eBay and Noble Knight, in nice condition, and in some cases for about the same price or less than when it was produced. With three versions of it to use for reference now I should be able to get something drummed up.

Re: Lejendary Adventure revisited

Fri Jan 31, 2014 10:23 pm

I actually like the system until the magic. I never could buy into how he has magic work. I mean, it seemed to fit the "power scale" of the game, but I just never became a fan of it. I do love playing warriors in it.

Re: Lejendary Adventure revisited

Sat Feb 01, 2014 3:00 am

Aergraith wrote:
*snip*

Looking through them, on one hand you can see why it would be off-putting; to a cynical reader it seems clear that Gary was in opposite-land trying to do whatever D&D didn't. He wouldn't have wasted his time on this I think, however, if he didn't think he had a good idea to run with.

And it does look like a pretty good idea. I like the system of complex characters and simple monsters to make things easier on the Lejend Master. The powers listed get some of their Vancian mystique back after years of becoming too familiar with the D&D spells. In a lot of cases the deliberate departure from D&D by a guy who knows the rules enough to break them seems to work.

*snip*



Hi G.

IIRC, after Gary had the legal issues with Mythus, he created this game and was careful to use terminology that he couldn't be sued for. Also, being such an intelligent fellow, I think he liked to fiddle with his D&D game and create a "variant" like he did with chess.

LA is really an extraordinary game, IMO - once you get past the minor rule variations and terminology.

It plays just like OD&D and I know this to be true as I played both games with Gary.

The thing that made the game so much easier to understand for me, was to create a character. Try it!

Best,

Rhu. :D

Re: Lejendary Adventure revisited

Sat Feb 01, 2014 3:04 am

I always thought the print editions of LJ was rather meh. Let's face it, they had early 80's production values in a late 90's marketplace.
Then I played in a game run by Chris Clark at Gary Con and I saw the beauty of the system.

Essentials was a step in the right direction. If given the time to comlete the project (I saw Peter's art and layouts on the re-prints at Troll Con) I think TLG could have raised the games profile and it would have had some traction in the market.

Woulda Coulda...

Re: Lejendary Adventure revisited

Sun Feb 02, 2014 11:34 pm

I've wanted to play Lejendary Adventures at some point, but gaming time at a premium has meant waiting and reading over the materials. One thing I thought that was particularly interesting was the means by which the human-centric campaign was brought about. Rather than the frustrating level capping of earlier editions of AD&D, the idea that joining an order would only be possible on most occasions with humans seemed interesting. Also, revisiting the Kobold as a player-class and making it more in-line with mythology regarding kobolds was an interesting design choice.

Re: Lejendary Adventure revisited

Thu Feb 20, 2014 9:54 pm

If you want to try the game cheaply, check out Perilous Journeys. It is basically a clone of LA but with cleaned up terminology and it is a bit more clear in presentation. There used to be a free pdf but I can't seem to find it anymore.

[Edit] Found the pdf. It can be DLed here.

Re: Lejendary Adventure revisited

Mon Mar 10, 2014 9:56 pm

Why did Mrs. Gygax end the publishing agreement with Troll Lord Games for Lejendary Adventures? Troll Lord Games always did a great job of supporting LA. So the fact that Mrs. Gygax removed the LA license baffles me. Now the game is in limbo which is sad. I am pretty sure that Gary would not have wanted things to have gone this way.

I will have to give Perilous Journeys a look if it is a Lejendary Adventures clone.

Re: Lejendary Adventure revisited

Sun Mar 30, 2014 1:44 am

Had a chance to try this game out with a great group of gamers new & old. We used the Quickstart version and it lasted a few sessions.
Don't remember all the details, but it had witch and a goblin type hole. I remember it being fun but I had to extensively fix the layout of those Quickstart rules.

The thing I didn't like was the terminology change - Harm being one, using "dollar" for currency, and weird names for monsters. The distance yourself from D&D thing went way too far IMHO. The Knacks, and orders were pretty cool though.

Picked up the Hexforge/Trigee Stuff, along with several of Trolls boxed sets and whatever adventures were around before they stopped printing. Portals Magazine you might still be able to find out there as well.

Much like Castle Zagyg, I would like to see Lejendary Essentials back in print and done by the Trolls - as intended.

Re: Lejendary Adventure revisited

Wed Dec 10, 2014 2:51 am

Ok, the other night's game fell through due to technical difficulties. However, it did lead to a great BS session between us as we waited to see if the server would reset etc.

One thing that came up was LA. I commented how I had it, wanted to play it, but never had the chance. That really got the discussion going on the merits (many of them) of the game and the (few – specifically the use of terminology) merits of. However, we all agreed that wasn't too big a hurdle to the game in reality.

Now, today had I a free hour during lunch – boy it is amazing how much free time a teacher has when he doesn't have students to teach – so I dug through my external hard drive and found my TLG LA PDFs. This lead to me finding my notes and ideas for a home brew setting, new classes (well orders) etc.

As I set through another briefing this afternoon, I didn't pay attention to the other section leaders as they babbled on about all the great things their section did this cycle. I kept thinking about LA and my home brew stuff and comparing it to my C&C.

I realized when I think C&C I tend to think lower magic/fantasy and picture a Tolkienesk early medieval setting. However, when I think LA, I automatically think high magic/fantasy and have a 'Starfall' & 'Princess Bride' setting. I even had notes for modifying the sailor order from Hekaforge (I have the books boxed up somewhere) to make it a 'flying boat' navy.

Is it just me that LA draws toward that type of play/setting or am I just aby-normal?


Now that said, are there any home brew orders anyone made?

Re: Lejendary Adventure revisited

Wed Dec 10, 2014 11:08 pm

Valerus, don't quote me but I thought the decision to drop LA from the Troll Lord lineup was to allow the guys to concentrate more on Castle Zagyg. For two seconds, I thought Mongoose was going to do LA instead. My memory is foggy on these matters, but I think this happened before Gary passed. Could be wrong.

Re: Lejendary Adventure revisited

Wed Dec 10, 2014 11:21 pm

LA went with the GFW series, CZ, the Gord reprints and everything else in the pipe when the license was pulled. Mongoose's Flaming Cobra imprint was supposed to print LA afterward but that never happened. Of course there was a lot of strife and bad feelings over this and bad tastes were left in many mouths.

Re: Lejendary Adventure revisited

Thu Dec 11, 2014 12:23 pm

Lurker wrote:I realized when I think C&C I tend to think lower magic/fantasy and picture a Tolkienesk early medieval setting. However, when I think LA, I automatically think high magic/fantasy and have a 'Starfall' & 'Princess Bride' setting. I even had notes for modifying the sailor order from Hekaforge (I have the books boxed up somewhere) to make it a 'flying boat' navy.


Not familiar with Starfall, but there is a subtle difference between the worlds of D&D and LA, though I am not sure how much the system makes that so (though the use of Orders does shape the world in a way classes don't.). If you look at Gygax's later adventures for C&C and LA, I think his head was in the same place for both.

Re: Lejendary Adventure revisited

Thu Dec 11, 2014 12:43 pm

Was just looking over Perilous Journey and LA in more detail. We had discussed briefly if we were going to play this, which we'd use. Hekaforge, TLG, or Perilous Journeys.

All of them are "dead"; I don't think PJ gets any further attention, and discussion on Dragonsfoot isn't too lively.

PJ is free (http://www.perilousjourneys.com/downloa ... easev2.pdf), or $12.75 softcover from Lulu. It's not really LA though. The differences aren't just renaming, but genericizing and splitting some systems like Orders into Professions and Guilds, and require more initial work from the LM. I recommended it for the accessibility, but if the goal is to experience LA, I think it might not be the best way.

Hekaforge LA has several auctions on eBay right now and the Rules for All Players can be had for ~$25, and for about $10 more on Noble Knight. These are the most complete rules legally available AFAIK and are complete and understandable. The burden on the LM would be greater if they wanted all of the other books. The drawback is there are no legally available PDFs that I know of.

TLG LA Essentials has the advantage that PDFs were distributed. It is missing the following Alfar races: gnome, Veshoge, all three Orc types, and Wylf. It also lacks some of the orders: demonurge, desperado, elementalist, mariner, warlock, which without checking probably correspond to the first rank skills of the missing Alfar. For Magic, it only includes Enchantment and Theurgy. I haven't tried to play it to see if it is complete, but any time a system gets cut down I find stuff gets overlooked. An LM with all available materials with players only possessing the Essentials would probably call on other sources to round it out. There is one copy available on eBay right now for ~$25.

Re: Lejendary Adventure revisited

Fri Dec 12, 2014 11:06 pm

Aergraith

Good question. I didn't realize DJ was dead too (thanks for posting the link by the way).



I would suggest (of course take it with a grain of salt!) using LA essentials as the primary rules that everyone has uses for the game. Use DJ as a reference for those that are hung up on the phraseology of LA, but where there is a conflict default to LA.



Then you as the DM use the Hekaforge LA rules to fill in the blanks and expand the choices as needed.

For character creation, give the players summaries of the races, orders etc that are not in the LA essentials. Then get their character concept & ideas and give them 2 or 3 options from the H LA rules and let them chose which best fits their specific concept.

An added bonus will be that there is no min/max munchkin character creation.



Oh yeah, I found where I have notes for LA orders from the TLG book 'Canting Crew'. I'm not sure what other books have orders that my need to be added to the list of 'supporting' books for the game.



Oh by the way, I liked your idea (from our BS session) where you had a specific item from the skills bundle they selected to have a bonus in. That way you have a gambler and a street thug with the same level of Urbane but are completely different in their use of that ability.
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