I've wanted to make a simple rpg for a while where stats aren't as important as the story.... But I still want stats in my rpg. How could I create a rpg using only paper, pencils and a couple of dice. I also intend to make most of the story on the spot.
closed as not a real question by mxyzplk♦ Jul 9 '11 at 0:32
It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form. For help clarifying this question so that it can be reopened, see the FAQ.
Stage 1: Figure out your audience. You've got to be writing for a specific group.
The audience informs your design, your complexity, and what kinds of fun you provide.
Stage 2: Make sure you know your statistics. You have got to be able to completely model your game, statistically speaking, before you elaborate on the mechanics. If you can't "prove" (in the mathematical sense) your system, it's far too complex. Complex systems, unanalyzed, have annoying edge cases.
Stage 3: Create a system to support your audience's desires. Make sure it behaves, statistically speaking, the way you need it to behave.
Stage 4: Explore your setting, build your setting on top of the system so that the setting is a fun place to play and the system supports that fun. Did you change anything mechanically? Go back to stage 2.
Stage 5: See if your intended audience is satisfied by your game. (Fun may not be a requirement, satisfaction is.) If not, go back to step 1.
Stage 6: Once you've polished your setting and mechanics and insure that it appeals to your intended audience, hire a good editor. You cannot edit your own work. You cannot edit your own work. You cannot edit your own work. (I've worked in the industry. Watching authors trying to self-edit is painful.) Does your editor understand games? If not, get a better editor.
Stage 7: Start running it at local cons, get feedback. Go to stage 1.
Try Tracy Hickman's Xtreme Dungeon Mastery- There is a RPG in the book exactly like what you describe. The whole book is about how you run a game like what you describe as well. His system is called XD20.
First off, you need to figure out, in much better detail, your design goals.
Then simply start writing your mechanics.
Then playtest it.
There are a lot of games without minis-based combat.
So, realize, you're essentially reinventing the wheel, and the audience is likely to be ungrateful.
If you want to try, tho', do it. Just do it. Do it for yourself, tho'.