I've been asked to piece together parts of Microlite74 to produce a complete single volume Microlite78: First Edition Lite and add a "few things" to make it more like the 1978 "First Edition". It would be dead simple to toss the rules from Microlite74 Extended with the descriptions from Companion II (Treasure), Companion IV (Bestiary of Monsters) and Companion V (First Edition Spells) together in one volume. However, the request is for a bit more. He'd like classes written up in more detail (like I do in Microlite81, including the more normal XP treatment) and some of the system altered a bit to make it more like 1e. These requests makes it more than a two day (or so) job.
When I did not sound enthusiastic about adding this to my workload, he offered a $100 donation to The RetroRoleplaying Cancer Fund for me to write it. My wife vetoed this as she thinks adding this to my RPG design schedule should at least pay off one of our our remaining lab bills -- like from her annual CT scans. $596 would pay off the one from 2012, so I told the person requesting this that he'd need to donate about $600 before my wife would allow me to add this project to the schedule. We compromised. He'd donate $100 (which he has) and I'd do Microlite78 if the remaining $500 was donated by the end of the month of April from other people who like the idea. So if you'd like to see a free Microlite78: First Edition Lite available, please donate as much as you can via Paypal to the RetroRoleplaying Cancer Fund ASAP. If I receive most the the needed donations by the 20th of April, I'll work on an early draft copy during the last ten days of April so donors will get something they can download quickly.
Anyone donating $10 or more during April will be listed as a sponsor in Microlite78: First Edition Lite. A $10 donation gets a "First Level Sponsor" listing, a $20 donation gets a "Second Level Sponsor" listing, a $30 donation gets a "Third Level Sponsor" listing, etc. All donations of $25 or more will be listed as a sponsor of all the Microlite81 games as well. April donors will also be eligible for some AD&D 1e items in drawings (I'll list those in a blog post tomorrow or Monday). One chance for every $10 donated and these items will be given away even if the $600 goal is not met. BTW, as of this post we have %120 in donations so we are at 20% of the goal now).
Naturally donors get all the standard benefits from donating to the RetroRoleplaying Cancer Fund: special donor downloads, access to donor draft copies of works in progress, etc. You can donate this Paypal link .
Some questions and answers about this project:
1) Will Microlite78 be based on 1e or the weird BX/1e mix you used back in the 1980s? While Microlite78: First Edition Lite will include my "standard" house rules (those in Microlite74 Extended), it will not be Microlite81 Advanced. The idea is to produce something like a "1e lite" not a major B/X variant, so it will not be based on my BX/1e plus the kitchen sink rules that will appear in Microlite81 Advanced.
2) Race as Class? No, 1e -- like 0e with the supplements -- had separate races and classes. Both had level limits. I have yet to decide if Microlite78 would use level limits or the adjusted XP system from Microlite74 Extended.
3) What about Bards and Psionics? Bards will be included as an optional class. However, it will be a stand alone class; that is, Bards will not have to progress through a series of other classes before becoming a Bard as they did in 1e. Psionics will be available as well, although it will be based on my system from Microlite74 Companion I, not the 1e version. Both the Bard class and psionics were optional in 1e, probably because neither worked all that well with the rest of the system. They will be an option in Microlite78 as well, but if a GM decides to use one or both they should should work much better with the rest of the system.
3) What about Alignment? The standard nine alignments from 1e will be used instead of my Light/Neutral/Dark system.
4) Will this project delay other projects? It probably will, but not by much as the next 4 to 6 weeks would be devoted to Microlite20 collection updates and other small projects anyway. Much of the heavy-lifting on Microlite78 has already been done with the various Microlite74 publications. For example, the monsters can be taken from the Bestiary of Monsters with only minor changes (e.g. alignment).
5) Will all the optional rules available with Microlite74 work with Microlite78? 0e with all the supplements is very much like a "lite version" of 1e. This means that many optional rules from Microlite74 would probably work with Microlite78 if one makes some minor changes to better fit the 1e paradigm, however, there no guarantees that your favorite Microlite74 optional rules would work. I have no plans to do Microlite78 conversions of all the Microlite74 optional rules.
6) Will adventures written for 1e work with Microlite78? As far as I can tell, you can use just about all TSR-era adventures and settings with Microlite74 or Microlite81 with only minor modifications that most GMs can make on the fly as they run them. This should apply to Microlite78 as well.
7) What if the $600 goal is not reached by the end of April? Microlite78 would probably still get written, just not in anything like the near future (sometime in 2016, perhaps). The closer we come to that goal, the more priority the project will have (as my wife will be more willing to give me more time to work on it). If we go over-goal, even more priority will be possible.