It would be interesting to make an RPG out of only words, no math, no charts, just words. Maybe it would be simple and refreshing.
A game like that could easily become just as or even more complex than any normal RPG though. In order to build a world engine that only used descriptions, could end up taking up a huge amount of time to convey.
To circumvent that eventuality, it may be useful to give the engine a direction so that things stay simple. This is what I thought of.
Every story worthy element has One Rule. The GM gives the world a rule. Players give their characters a rule. Important (special) equipment gets a rule. An important NPC or maybe a group of NPCs get a rule. Weather can get a rule. A maze can have a rule.
There are a few conditions that make things clearer.
No two elements can have the same rule. This is important so that two unstoppable forces don’t collide and annihilate everything.
A more specific rule supersedes a more general rule. If one player has a character that is “The greatest fighter in the world” and another has the rule that they are “The greatest swordsman in the world” as long as the fighting is being done with swords, the swordsman wins out.
That’s very Amber like in it’s certainty however. A character can always win in a specific contest, a randomizer could be employed, but that doesn’t seem interesting. I’ll have to play with the idea and see if it I can make something of it.