Should I get it?

It’s been a while since I’ve checked on the forum, (my hard drive burnt out), but before it did, torchbearer was being kick-started. I think I understand the gist of it; It seems to be burning wheel like with rule twists for more of a classic dungeon-crawl experience. I play with (at this point) what amounts to 6 total newbies, a few slightly experienced players, and me, the GM. I love BWG, and really enjoy the BITs system that was present, but it’s a little bit to complex for my players. What I would like to know is:

A) How similar is Torchbearer to Burning Wheel in its core mechanics?
B) Would it be easier or more difficult to learn for a group like mine?
C) Is their a resource/demo/starter rules of some sort I could use to run it through with my players before asking if its something that they would play?

(sorry if this is the wrong thread-it seemed the best place to ask)

A) Torchbearer is closer to Mouse Guard than to Burning Wheel.
B) Tough question. Torchbearer is fairly unforgiving. It’s fun, but it’s brutal. The mechanics aren’t really that difficult, though. I think either Luke or Thor described it as Advanced Mouse Guard, and that seems pretty apt.
C) Not really, although I think you can get the first chapter of the book in the web store for free.

B) You may have some issues running it with 9 players. It can start to drag a bit even with 5.

We run with six players and a GM. I wouldn’t play with more than that. 3-5 players is optimal.

Thanks for the tips.

Would Mouse-Guard be a better place to look then?

You’re going to run into the same issue with your number of people.

9 players is extreme for pretty much any system. You might want to see if someone else in the group wants to try GMing a game and have two games going simultaneously, each with a GM and 4 players.

Thanks Everyone.

Yeah… so aside from saying it’s Advanced Mouse Guard the difference I see between BW and Torchbearer is that Burning Wheel is a bit more open to whet your campaign is about and our games tend to turn out a little more “blood opera” if you’re really pushing beliefs (it doesn’t have to be but it lends itself more readily). Torchbearer is more focused on dungeon crawling/adventuring with clear dinilialted spaces and a stronger structure.

I think MG and Torchbearer happen to be more streamlined and cleaner systems and while not very forgiving (its all about struggling) they lend themselves to very even handed conflicts of all sorts. BW leans toward social and physical “combat.”

I have run BW with a lot of people but I wouldn’t if I had a choice. I think both games suffer when you throw in more than 5 unless you have very good (or very patient) players.

If you want a game with slightly more external conflict (compared to internal) Torchbearer, as written, is more setup from the get go.

A) Torchbearer is nearly identical in core mechanics to BW. More focused. More streamlined to dungeon crawling focus. And conflicts have a wider base in the types of extended conflicts you have.
B) I think Torchbearer is an easy sell and easier to learn. (of course, 9 players is rough… personally I think you should try)
C) Torchbearer could use a demo dungeon… hmmmmm

Hope that helps,

Like The Dread Crypt of Skogenby, or were you envisioning something shorter?

Thanks all. I’ve decided to get it anyway, just to have for when the group gets just a tad more advanced, and maybe have one of the other player’s GM as recommended.