28 December 2011

My Old School RPG House Rules

As is the custom, I have pulled together a few house rules for my old school players.   These can be found here (google docs).   Most of these are self-evident, but there are a few worth pressing on.

Get off on the right foot: level 1 characters get the maximum hit points

As the Labyrinth Lord manual says "characters die."  However, I have found the character generation is a longish process and one I would like to minimize.   This bonus doesn't seem overly generous.

When levelling, any HP roll may be re-rolled. The second roll must be used

What can I say?  I love gambling.  If the player wants to press his luck, that's fine with me.

Character generation: roll 4d6; drop lowest.  Generate 7 numbers; drop lowest. Place anywhere.

As I said, character generation is pretty tedious and who wants to play a character with several crippling stats?  This method doesn't produce "muchkins," but it should make the player feel like they have a character with a decent shot at survival.

Roll both “to hit” 20 sided die with the dice needed for damage at the same time

This is a time-saver.  The player can get all his "dice ducks" in a row to make combat less latent.

Each point of strength above 9 gives the character +10 pounds of carrying

Don't you hate it when you can't get the entire dragon's hoard of gold out in one haul?

Carrying weight rules vex me in the paper and pen world, but games like Fallout taught me that there is some fun in having to make choices.

I am going to try playing with OD&D with encumbrance rules, which I loathed in the past.  I hope that by tracking characters in google spreadsheet, the tedious (there's that word again) task of bean counting can be automated.  This leaves me with tracking time and movement rates (ick).

On a technical note, I tried out Google+ hangouts today and it works very well.  I log into the hangout with two different machines with two different accounts so that one camera is on me and the other is pointed at a "dice arena."  This, I hope, adds a layer of accountability to my rolls.  It's also a nod to the roots of the game.   Who doesn't love rolling funny looking dice?

Speaking of which, I picked up some new dice today.  Here they are:

Chessex CHX 25403