EABAnywhere

EABAnywhere

From: Blacksburg Tactical Research Center

Reviewed by: Ron McClung

EABAnywhereis a new Role Playing Game Rules System from Blacksburg Tactical Research Center.

EABA is a role playing game system by BTRC that claims to be the End-All-Be-All for roleplaying. I had the opportunity to review the original system rules for EABA, which can be found here in Gaming Report. EABA in general is a good and solid system so I looked forward to diving into EABAnywhere.

From page # 1.2 of the EABA Core Rulebook: “EABA is a role-playing game system for the new millennia.”

In short, I do like the EABA core system. It reminds me of a more refined and sophisticated West End Games d6 System and Masterbook system with a little GURPS and Hero System influence. The author, Greg Porter, credits certain games like Hero System and GURPS for their influence on his gaming design. The character generation system is a little clunky with a little more number crunching than I would normally like, but the system is really elegant, simple and easy to play. I personally can not say that it is truly the end-all-be-all system, but it is a system I can see myself running.

EABAnywhereis basically a portable version of EABA. Primarily usable in a Live-Action Role Play (LARP) situation, it also can be used for gaming “on-the-go.” It is a free PDF that is only 8 pages long. It is safe to say that it reallystrips down the EABArules. Character Generation (Char-Gen) is point allocation like EABA but with fewer points. Attributes are the same (Strength, Agility, Awareness, Will, Health, Fate). There are also Hits, Dodge and Run as secondary abilities. Where EABAuses d6 dice and level values for each attribute, EABAnywhere uses a number of dots.

Char-Gen also has traits and skills. The skill list is short but like EABA, you can make up your own that best fits your game. Traits however are left to the player. There is a general guideline on how much they cost, how much one can spend, and how much of a bonus or penalty they supply, but the GM or Storyteller needs to work out the details of each trait together. This is where the character concept becomes relatively important. Traits are not huge modifiers to the character but are subtle changes that make the character different. You are only aloud a few, so people need to be fairly selective. Any trait from EABA can be ported into this trait system, of course.

From EABA Web Site: “EABA is heroic in scale, but still realistic.”

The system is several rounds of Rock-Paper-Scissors (R-P-S). However, the system is a step above the standard R-P-S system. It allows for heroic successes and gives people that are significantly disadvantaged at least a chance to get heroic success, even if it is slight. Difficulties are number values, and the R-P-S rounds gain bonuses or penalties to your skill total (attribute level plus skill level). Difficulties in this system range from Very Easy (1) to Impossible (7). In all cases of task resolution, a player can spend Fate to reduce or increase a difficulty.

Combat and task resolution are similar in that they involve the multiple rounds of R-P-S. Combat allows for dodging but it does not impact as much as other games. Combat rounds can be assumed to be about a second long, allowing a player to move or attack or do something else simple. There is a certain vagueness in the rules about distances in movement and ranged combat, but one can extrapolate from the rules that it is up to you how to measure it as long as it is all agreed upon. Distances are in meters, and a ranged difficulty is the range to the target. How you measure that is up to you. I would suggest approximating it out by stepping the distances.

Also included in these rules are Powers, but they are considerably more simplified than the EABA system. Powers basically act as skills, but add to one’s sorcery skill (or whatever supernatural skill you are using for your genre). Powers effects are measured by one’s fate attribute and general mechanics are based on regular task resolution.

Throughout the PDF, there are conversion rules for EABAto EABAnywhereand back. This is of course only handy if you have bought the EABABasic Rules (reviewed by me earlier). EABAitself is a good RPG system and EABAnywhere, although somewhat different, does show you the basic philosophy of design behind EABAreally well.

In conclusion, one thing I like about Greg Porter’s stuff is that it is well thought-out and designed. Greg Porter of BTRC is a gamer’s game designer. He doesn’t design something brainless solely to make money. He designs intelligent systems that are fun to play for the gamer. EABAnywhereis a good example of that. There is some generalness in it, leaving a lot to the readers’ assumptions, but Greg assumes his readers are reasonably intelligent enough to figure some minor details out. I think I would have put a little more detail and clarification in some areas, but in general it is a good solid mechanic and easy to understand.

For more details on Blacksburg Tactical Research Center and their new Role Playing Game Rules “EABAnywhere” check them out at their website http://www.btrc.net.

EABAnywhere

From:Blacksburg Tactical Research Center

Type of Game:Role Playing Game Rules

Written by:Greg Porter

Game Design by:Greg Porter

Developed by:Greg Porter

Number of Pages:8

Game Components Included:One PDF File

Retail Price:Free

Website:www.btrc.net

Reviewed by: Ron McClung