Sunday, May 10, 2009

Random Rules Post 1

I find myself spending way too much time perusing boards ( & Dragonsfoot mostly)for ideas rather than coming up with my own stuff. I'll read and read and read,and always get more ideas than I can ever use, and I LOVE IT! So there.

By the way, can anyone recommend others that have enough "Classic" content to consider? I know there's the OD&D Discussion board, but it really does focus on OD&D, which isn't quite my thing.

One of the things this blog will help me to do is, as I said, get those ideas on paper so that I can focus on incorporating the ones I decide to actually use. So, this post will be the first in a series, I imagine. As I poke about the interwebs and find "stuff", I'll put it here for further consideration.

Two for this morning. Discuss.

  • "Death's Door" Rules: I've always played in small groups and it sucks gettting killed too easily, so I see the value of not dying automatically at 0 HP. The "Survive to -10" seems arbitrary, and too much, as does "Survive to - CON" (survive to -14, or -18, really?), two options I've seen. I kind of like the "Save or Die" option from the RC, it gives you a chance, based on your class and level. Another good choice seems to be "Survive to - CON Bonus" which rewards those with high CON. Makes sense to me.
I guess my vote will be either "Save or Die" or "- CON Bonus"

  • Critical Hit/Fumble: I know that in "Classic" that Natural 20 doesn't actually mean anything. But like most people (as far as I can tell), it is house-ruled so that it does. At the minimum, it becomes an automatic hit, usually for Max or Double damage. I lean to max damage. What about more specific critical hit rules or damage. A recent thread on turned up2 cool charts: here and here , but are they just more rules? What about teh "Natural 1"? An Automatic miss, yes. Chance to hurt yourself or an ally? Lose your weapon? I actually don't remember using this really, just Natural 20 rules.


  1. There's also the "Survive to a negative number equal to [Level +1)", so 5th level characters would survive down to -6 hp. This seems kinda cool since low-level characters are still very fragile and high level characters in which people've invested a lot of time are more durable. My problem with this is that it's going to make high-level characters almost invincible.

    Something I've thought about is the "-CON Bonus" option with one additional exception. The exception being that attacks that do more damage than your class's rolled hit die *and* result in a negative HP total result in death. So, a fighter with a +2 CON Bonus and 10 hp could obviously survive an attack dealing 9 points of damage. However, let's say he's down to 8 hp at the start of combat and then takes that attack dealing 9 hp of damage. Even though he could survive going that low in terms of hit points, he wouldn't in this case since 9 is greater than 8.

    To my mind, this has the advantage of toning down the generoisty of "-CON Bonus" even more, giving fighters and dwarves the most benefit in terms of survivability potential, and making huge, succesful attacks more succesful than glancing blows (i.e. an attack dealing 1 hp of damage to an already wounded character). However, it does get kinda complicated and lacks the nice simplicity of "-CON Bonus".

  2. @X: Thanks for your comments! I don't think I've seen the "-(Level+1)" option before, so thanks for that one. I can see it being fair at lower levels, but as you said, at higher levels? Eek.

    The extra twist to "-CON Bonus", I don't know. I think most weaker characters (MU,Thieves) would die anyway, and more often the tougher characters would still survive, so it may just add a level of complexity that isn't needed. I'll have to think that over a bit more.