Archive for the ‘game’ Tag

Simple but not Basic   Leave a comment

I have ran a game for awhile now that my players loved to play and it was great to DM but what I think is surprising in some ways is that I did by basically cutting everything.

The game used the basic six stats from dnd str, int, wis, dex, con, cha.

but in some ways that was it. I didnt let the players choose classes or races they were all just human people, their equipment was chosen based off of what matched their stats and they were kept rather poor. Such as someone with high int might be dressed as a scholar and maybe have a scroll and/or some writing material. Someone with high str might make sure too keep a good pair of boots and maybe own a weapon.

Anyone could use weapons without penalty and anyone with a good int could cast from scrolls. (at the time I didn’t have them vanish either) Despite being poor it wasn’t hard for the characters to quip themselves with quickly made clubs and sharpened sticks as spears.

I told all the players they could pay for further training and maybe gain some kind of proficiency (or even 3rd edition dtyled feat) but that the amount of training they could have would be limited by level.

And that was basically it each player could quickly roll new characters if one died and those with a good wis score might receive divine help. The players were ran through some old TSR adventures and they had a great time.

There was no need for skills (which I think hinder role play) or even to hit charts or saving throws. It wasn’t hard to balance the adventures either and once PC’s got some feats it equaled everything out pretty well when compared to the to hit bonus and such that they weren’t getting.

I still think my favorite part was how quick and easy it was to roll up a new character but It still felt to everyone like they were playing dnd. And if a character died then we didn’t even need to pause while a new one was rolled up.


Posted August 18, 2011 by heromedel in Basic Edition

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Adventures Dark and Deep Play-Testing   Leave a comment

Yesterday I talked about Adventures Dark and Deep from the Greyhawk Grognard. Today I’m mostly going to talk about a new way I might try to make characters that I am going to play test using ADD.

After showing Thaylie the books and layout she almost as excited about them as I am (although I think she is a little more excited about “The Secret of Fire“. Which does sound pretty cool especially for the price. I might write about that game but maybe after I play it. Although I was amazed by its testimonials from people including Monte Cook and Gail Gygax.

So Far with ADD I have gone through most of the Player’s Manual and making a character was fun and I actually am new to some of these classes so I am finding them kinda interesting. I don’t exactly know what it means that some are sub-classes but I think its basicly just that they are related but harder to get into such as a paladin compared to a cavalier.

Also it was great being able to discuss my opinions and such on the play-testing forums. I think I managed to help out a little and also got what I wanted sorted out, lol.

So anyway here is my idea I might try out on my players for making some characters: (This idea basically has nothing to do with ADD except that I’m going to try it for an ADD game.)

1. Each player is going to choose how old their soul is without knowing what that is going to effect but it will determine their base race. Their options are:

  • Ancient (Elf)
  • Very Old (Gnome)
  • Old (Dwarf)
  • Mature (Half-Elf)
  • Young (Halfling)
  • Very Young (Human)
  • New (Half-Orc)

These are based off of the maximum age of each race.

Once I know what their base race is I am going to pose them each two questions which will determine their starting alignment and then I will give them the sub race that best matches. I will most likely ask the questions in a much more dramatic and less predictable way.

The basis of the questions are:

  1. You see a light do you move towards it (lawful, look around(neutral) or run back(chaotic).
  2. You realize you are being born into the world, do you choose a family that will give you comfort (good), discipline(neutral) or do you not care (evil)

So once I have their base race and alignment I am going to use this list I made to determine their actual race.

  • Gray Dwarf = Evil or Lawful Evil
  • Hill Dwarf = Neutral or Good
  • Mountain Dwarf = Lawful
  • Human = Any
  • Drow = Chaotic Evil
  • High-Elf = Lawful
  • Wild Elf = Chaotic
  • Wood Elf = Good
  • Gray Elf = Neutral
  • Half Elf = Any
  • Deep Gnome = Good
  • Gnome = Neutral
  • Hairfoot Halfling = Chaotic
  • Stout Halfling = Lawful
  • Tallfellow = Good
  • Half Orc = Chaotic

2.  To figure out their stats I am going to start with all 1d6 randomly and then based on my campaign settings solar system ask them what was visible in the sky when they were born. I am then going to roll another set of 1d6’s and assign the highest ones to the corresponding stats of what they choose. They will able to choose any configuration of the following being in the sky at the time of birth.

  • Yellow Sun (STR)
  • Blue Moon (Int)
  • Green Moon (Wis)
  • White Moon (Dex)
  • Red Sun (Con)
  • A special event like an eclipse (Cha)

3. Then I am either going to DM them through their childhood or ask more questions to simulate what they might have done in their youth. I intend to bend it too match their race and such. Depending on what they choose or do during their childhood I will assign the final group of 1d6’s.

It will basically work like this I will role 6d6 and then put them in a situation. if they choose to respond in a way that corresponds to strength then the highest d6 will go to str but no other situations will have a strength way out. eventualy each d6 will be assigned.

First I’m starting with birth order

  •  Middle Child (Str)
  • Youngest (Int)
  • Second Born (Wis)
  • Orphan (Dex)
  • Only Child (Con)
  • First Born (Cha)

As they are growing up their family as a whole runs into troubles do you

  • Do as your asked too (Str)
  • Help when you are able too (Int)
  • Watch how other families are getting by (wis)
  • Ask your family questions about their problems (Dex)
  • Run Away (Con)
  • Try to fix all the problems (Cha)

Your favorite class while being educated

  • Dropped out to Get a Job (Str)
  • All of Them (Int)
  • Alchemy or Herbalism (Wis)
  • Never Went to school (Dex)
  • Weapons or Fighting Training (Con)
  • The Easy Classes (Cha)

How did you handle Bullies

  • Join Them (Str)
  • Fight Them (Int)
  • Ignore Them (Wis)
  • Trick Them (Dex)
  • Tell on Them (Con)
  • Bully Them (Cha)

What do you want too be

  • Mercenary (Str)
  • Scholar (Int)
  • Sage (Wis)
  • Rich (Dex)
  • Knight (Con)
  • Good Person (Cha)

The Final d6 gets assigned to whatevers left.

So by this point they should have stats similar too 3d6 randomly and they were assigned based on hopefully fun choices and also know their race. I wil then let them choose their class by offering opportunities to go get training in them.They also should have a good idea of who they are and what they have been through, especially if I do Role Play all of this.

And then to top it all of I will probably have these questions come up once the campaign is actualy under way. I did not come up with these next questions but I forget where they came from.

  • Who are you?
  • What do you want?
  • Why are you here?
  • Where are you going?
  • What do you want?
  • What have you left behind?
Looking back at all this I wonder if it will appear to be a complete mess to someone reading it, but I am going to see how it goes, what kind of stats and characters come out of it and what the players think.

Posted August 15, 2011 by heromedel in Adventures Dark and Deep

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Legends and Labyrinths   Leave a comment

Justin Alexander over at TheAlexandrian has recently announced that his creation Legends And Labyrinths has been set up as an 8-bit funding project.

Although I haven’t Personaly seen anything in this book I am excited about its release for two reasons.

1. it claims to “take 3rd Edition and strip it down to its most basic components. It removes everything non-essential, leaving behind a simple, fast-and-loose, easy-to-use system.”

2.The Author has written numerous articles on his blog that has helped me as a DM and keep my interest in 3rd edition. In fact if it weren’t for his D&D: Calibrating Your Expectations article, I might have quit playing 3rd edition all together.

I am hoping to be paying for 2 of the 50 dollar perks.

Update: I ended up only funding one $50 perk.

Posted August 15, 2011 by heromedel in Legends and Labyrinths

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Adventures Dark and Deep   Leave a comment

Adventures Dark and Deep (ADD) is based off of 1st edition AD&D but under the premise of what would 2nd edition have been like if Gary Gygax had made it. I believe it was made by Joseph of the Greyhawk Grognard, and there is a great review of it at Classic RPG Realms.

It is currently in a play-testing phase and free to download.

I highly recommend reading the review because it does a great job of explaining what the game is and even taught me a little more about it. But what I’m going to talk about is what the game is too me.

I played alot of AD&D when I was younger but by the age of 12 3rd edition was out and since that was the edition I played for the next 13 years I am not exactly a veteran too old school gaming. I recently tried to get back into the earlier editions.

First I tried playing 1st edition since I still own the core books for that edition. It was fun for awhile but gave me head aches and my wife didn’t like the edition at all, mostly I think it was because of things like font, organization and that touch of riddle Gary seams to be able to write into almost any paragraph.

When then tried the retro clones which simply felt too bland for me, and then even began playing basic D&D. Eventually switching too a version of my own that stripped alot of various aspects of charactor generation too speed things up and make them less confusing but I did it in a way as too not lose flavor at least from the players perspective.

This essentially left me playing AD&D adventures with a completely house ruled game.

Then I saw ADD, which as far as I can tell collects everything from 1e and lays it out in a format that is clean and useful but without taking anything away from the game. For example it includes many classes such as the Cavalier, Mystic and Jester I believe 17 in all.

The races chapter includes many popular subraces and the bestiary is divided into sections like Wilderness/Dungeon, Prehistoric and Extra-planar.

I can’t quite explain it but it appears ADD is exactly the game I have been looking for I just hopre Joseph continues to support it for years too come.

Tomorrow I will talk about some of my experiences play-testing it and how I am going to have my new players role up their characters in what will hopefully be a very interesting way.


Posted August 14, 2011 by heromedel in Adventures Dark and Deep

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