I’ve put quite a lot of thought into the idea of running a World of Warcraft inspired game in GURPS. The more I read into the story of Azeroth, though, the less I liked it for tabletop. I’m unlikely to ever run it myself, but I guess it would be a shame to leave all the time spent on gurpsifying WoW to waste. Thus I’m going to post some of my thoughts, unpolished and unplaytested as they are.
First off: mages.
Required books: Magic.
Spells cannot be powered with Fatigue nor Hit Points, but with a dedicated Energy Reserve*. Should I refer to it, I’ll call it “Mana Reserve” to link to the WoW resource but keep it distinct from the GURPS concept of mana. I intend to keep the mage spell list very restricted, similar to the one in the computer game, so every character with Magery gets Mana Reserve 15 for free. You cannot get points for reducing your Mana Reserve.
Magic Rituals: Skill has it’s usual effect on spell cost and casting time, but regardless of skill, you need to make a 2-handed gesture and speak a couple quiet words to cast a spell. Magery stays at 10 points per level (you don’t get a discount for Dance or Song limitations). On Azeroth you aren’t prone to Low Mana or No Mana Zones, so the pros and cons cancel out in my opinion.
I find the Magery and Effect rule very important and assume it’s in use.
Holding a Melee or Missile spell is very important for GURPS mages. You can cast an offensive spell, rest, and then go into the dungeon armed with a 9d fireball and full energy. If you find the option unfitting to the world and intend to ban it, I suggest rising the starting Mana Reserve to 20.
All mages have Code of Honor (mage’s) for -10 character points: never wear armor other than cloth. Don’t teach magic to anyone who does. Any respectable mage would react poorly to an idea of using heavier armor. (Code of Honor is the closest fit I find, though you might reword it as Disciplines of Faith, Vow, or a custom Tradition or Uprising disadvantage. It’s a cultural thing, and something that is just wired into each magical adept’s world view). Should a player want to play an armored mage, you may use any combination of Unusual Background, negative Reputation, and Social Stigma. You might even use the New Inventions rules in-game to make the character come up with an idea of this revolutionary tactic.
I haven’t put much thought into enchanting, but I think Staff and Powerstones should be available.
As I mentioned earlier, the spell list should be cut a lot: only the spells that are part of Arcane, Fire and Frost specializations, and Enchanting profession, are available – I’m going to discuss them in separate posts.
Gnomasz out, cheers!
*) Energy Reserve is a concept explained in Powers, Thaumatology and some other supplements. It’s a separate energy pool for powering spells and abilities in place of FP. It costs 3 points per level, it has no 1/3 threshold and can never drop below 0. It recharges at the same rate FP does, though it does so even if the character isn’t resting.