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Pony Tales: Aspirations of Harmony

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Pony Tales: Aspirations of Harmony
Pony Tales Cover
The cover art of the Player's Handbook
Creator(s) Staric
Art Inky Quills
ThousandYearSunrise
Heat Wave
Alcazar Ward
Soaring Song
Date published July 14, 2012
Type of game Tabletop RPG
Platform/engine d20 system
Based on Dungeons and Dragons
Pony Tales: Aspirations of Harmony is a d20 RPG system created by Dan Felder. Carson Douglas, Alex Wagner, and Kat Schell also worked with him on the project under his leadership. The team also had a slew of playtesters and artists. In the credits, several people are given Special Thanks for undisclosed contributions. Currently the group has completed the first edition of the Player’s Handbook as well as the dungeon master’s guide (dubbed the Ponyhandler’s Guide). They plan to make the monsters manual, however, as a community driven project. “Pony Tales: Aspirations of Harmony” is not to be confused with the open d6 system going by the name “Pony Tales.”

Premise

The goal of “Pony Tales: Aspirations of Harmony” is to function as a tabletop RPG system that is harmonious with the concepts and ideas of “ My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic”, as well as being simple enough to be played over a simple voice chat. The player’s handbook allows players to create their characters as well as all the basics involved in playing a game whilst the Dungeon Master’s guide allows for Dungeon Masters to quickly adapt to the new concept of a “My Little Pony” centric RPG as well as basics in creating their very own campaigns and a monster creation guide. The upcoming monster manual will provide an additional slew of monsters for a Dungeon Master to use in his or her gaming group’s campaign.

Gameplay/Controls

Combat

To achieve the goal of a straightforward tabletop RPG system, the boards, graphs, figurines, and tokens of traditional D&D were done away with to be replaced with a JRPG fighting mechanic. Instead of calculating for hit/miss rolls with distance modifiers and other factors involved, the new system only accounts for how much damage is in a roll with all rolls considered to be a “hit.” In order to make sense of what goes down visually, the loss of hitpoints is more a representation of the player’s exhaustion of stamina rather than actual chunks of flesh being cleaved away.

PiP

Also akin to JRPG fighting systems, players are given “PiPs” to spend on their special attacks similar to how “action points” are applied to a traditional JRPG. However, some attacks give a player PiPs whereas have no cost at all. There is no “basic attack” in the combat system so players must calculate their battles with the PiP cost in mind at all times.

Skill Checks

In order to cater more to “My Little Pony: Friendship is magic’s” Friendship based theme. The old statistics and calculations of traditional D&D were also rewritten so that it is more highly encouraged that a group work together to pass skill checks. Whereas a single player has the ability to do most tasks on his own, having the group chip in to maximize the outcome of a skill check can allow the players to perform incredible feats.

Harmony Points

Another great difference is the removal of the traditional experience points to be replaced with “harmony points.” Instead of rewarding the with the points for overcoming obstacles, completing challenges, and winning battles; harmony points are given to the group for making the world more “harmonious” by helping others, resolving conflicts, and spreading the magic of friendship. Also unlike experience points, the Dungeon Master can take points away if the players commit rather extreme acts of disharmony such as killing innocent townsfolk or their fellow players without good reason.

Other Mechanics

Finally other things like racial traits, cutie marks, elements of harmony, and other things allow the game to function quite properly whilst maintaining the distinct “My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic” feel and theme.

The game has many people playing it, adding to the developing process their own ideas and a multitude of playtesting games on the forums.

The game's forum

Discussions relating to game development and practically anything else are conducted on a forum dedicated to the game.

External links

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