A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2
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    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    GnomePirate

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    Default 2nd AD&D Perception checks?

    I am starting a new campaign tonight and as I have written this campaign over the last 3 years and wrote it for multiple editions as I rotated through motivation, I ran into a problem as I was rereading tonight's portion. I know we solved this in the 90s, I just cant remember how.

    How do you roll for perception in 2E? Like in an example

    "If PCs check the body on an easy perception check they find it belongs to a familiar Baron Joris Iselmere of France. A difficult perception check notes a small incision in the back of his neck between where his helm and his chain shirt cover as if made by a small dagger. A moderate investigation check reveals this was a murder not a battle wound."
    This works for editions 3+ But how do I pull it off here?
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    Lord Torath's Avatar

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    Default Re: 2nd AD&D Perception checks?

    It all comes down to PC actions. If the player states they investigate the body, you tell them who it is (assuming he's known to the PCs), and that he's dead. If they ask how he died, you tell them about the wound. In short, if the player asks about it, you tell them. No dice required.

    If there's something you need a special skill to know about (the rope was tied with a special knot, unique to the assassins based in Nice, France), if one of the PCs has the right back ground or skill, you tell them. If none of them do, you tell them only the things they can see (it's a special knot, but they've never seen its like before).

    That's how I run it, anyway. When in doubt, share the information. Almost every adventure is made better by giving the PCs more clues.

    The closest thing that 2nd Edition has to a perception test (that I'm aware of) is the Surprise Check. Other than that, tell them what's before their eyes.
    Last edited by Lord Torath; 2021-08-18 at 01:36 PM.
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    JadedDM's Avatar

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    Default Re: 2nd AD&D Perception checks?

    Yeah, using the specific example you gave:

    If the PCs know who Baron Joris Iselmere is, or have seen him before, just tell them that, no roll needed.

    If the PCs think to check the back of his neck, mention the incision. If they state they check the entire body carefully for wounds, that can still count. If one of them has the Diagnostics proficiency, you can have them make a proficiency check instead (the description specifically states you can use it to determine how someone died).

    Basically, make a judgment call based on their background and skills if they know something or not, or just answer specific questions. In later editions, a PC might roll a search or perception check to notice that pulling down the red book on the shelf causes a secret door to open, but in 2E the PC will have to actually physically try pulling the red book down to discover it.

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    Default Re: 2nd AD&D Perception checks?

    If you prefer relying on nonweapon proficiencies, Observation and Investigation were both introduced in Player's Option: Spells & Magic. Oddly, both are only found on the Priest proficiency list. I'd expect at least Observation to be important for rogues.
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    Librarian in the Playground Moderator
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    Default Re: 2nd AD&D Perception checks?

    Quote Originally Posted by Corsair14 View Post
    I am starting a new campaign tonight and as I have written this campaign over the last 3 years and wrote it for multiple editions as I rotated through motivation, I ran into a problem as I was rereading tonight's portion. I know we solved this in the 90s, I just cant remember how.

    How do you roll for perception in 2E? Like in an example

    "If PCs check the body on an easy perception check they find it belongs to a familiar Baron Joris Iselmere of France. A difficult perception check notes a small incision in the back of his neck between where his helm and his chain shirt cover as if made by a small dagger. A moderate investigation check reveals this was a murder not a battle wound."
    This works for editions 3+ But how do I pull it off here?
    A simple method is Wisdom or Intelligence checks; I tend to use Wisdom for things you notice, while Intelligence for things you investigate.

    Rule of thumb is Easy is +3 (So, an easy perception check would be Wisdom+3 or under on a d20), Moderate is +/-0 (So, under Wisdom on a d20), and difficult is -3 (so, Wisdom-3).

    You might also look at proficiencies. Recognizing the Baron might be Local History, Etiquette, or Heraldry. Noting the incision on the back of the neck, and the fact that it was not a battle wound, might be Healing.
    The Cranky Gamer
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    *Picard management tip: Debate honestly. The goal is to arrive at the truth, not at your preconception.
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    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: 2nd AD&D Perception checks?

    If I remember correctly, there was an article in an issue of Dragon that talked about a perception type score. I can't remember all the specifics but what our group wound up doing for a while was taking the average of your Int and Wis scores and using that as your perception score.
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    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    GnomePirate

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    Default Re: 2nd AD&D Perception checks?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mutazoia View Post
    If I remember correctly, there was an article in an issue of Dragon that talked about a perception type score. I can't remember all the specifics but what our group wound up doing for a while was taking the average of your Int and Wis scores and using that as your perception score.
    Yeah I remember that as well. Also a Comeliness score in addition to Charisma to reflect CHR being personality and ability to charm people while Comeliness is pure appearance.
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    Librarian in the Playground Moderator
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    Default Re: 2nd AD&D Perception checks?

    Another good option for "General Perception" (not "Do I recognize this person as the Baron" but "Do I see anything") is the skill Detect Noise. Everyone has it, just at the base level for their race (which is 15% plus racial and armor modifiers), while thieves and bards are best at it. It gives a boost to thieves and bards but, quite frankly, the thieves need it.
    The Cranky Gamer
    *It isn't realism, it's verisimilitude; the appearance of truth within the framework of the game.
    *Picard management tip: Debate honestly. The goal is to arrive at the truth, not at your preconception.
    *Two Tales of Tellene, available from DriveThruFiction
    *The One Deck Engine: Gaming on a budget
    Avatar is from local user Mehangel
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    Titan in the Playground
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    Default Re: 2nd AD&D Perception checks?

    I like rolling against Wisdom, and you need to roll low.

    One advantage is that if they are trying to spot something real, and they roll low, they successfully see it. But if they are saving against an illusion, and they roll low, then they see the illusion as real. So the process of rolling a saving throw doesn't inherently tell the players that there is an illusion. This protects the game from (one aspect of) meta-knowledge.

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    Default Re: 2nd AD&D Perception checks?

    I like rolling under wisdom, because wisdom just doesn't do a whole lot otherwise, except for divine spellcasters.

    Also, assuming you use the non-weapon proficiency rules from the PHB, it makes sense to add perception as an NWP, based on wisdom.

    And yes, perception and comeliness where the most common "extra stats" that people houseruled in, based on the really old unofficial (banned-by-T$R) D&D handbooks on the web. I don't think comeliness actually does anything, but it was a common stat.
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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Kobold

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    Default Re: 2nd AD&D Perception checks?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kurald Galain View Post
    I like rolling under wisdom, because wisdom just doesn't do a whole lot otherwise, except for divine spellcasters.

    Also, assuming you use the non-weapon proficiency rules from the PHB, it makes sense to add perception as an NWP, based on wisdom.

    And yes, perception and comeliness where the most common "extra stats" that people houseruled in, based on the really old unofficial (banned-by-T$R) D&D handbooks on the web. I don't think comeliness actually does anything, but it was a common stat.
    I could have sworn Comeliness came in under the 1e Unearthed Arcana?

    EDIT: Oh man, it totally did and it had the weirdest mechanical effects. Both in how it was calculated (adjustments based on your Charisma and on your race, among other things) and how it worked (anything from 'everything that sees you is repulsed' up to actual Fascination effects.)
    Last edited by Lapak; 2021-09-02 at 08:15 AM.

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    Librarian in the Playground Moderator
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    Default Re: 2nd AD&D Perception checks?

    For roll-under mechanics, I have always preferred "Higher is better, until you're too high." If Sarah has a 15 and Bob has a 13, Sarah MIGHT succeed, but less than Bob (i.e. she rolls a 7, he rolls a 10), and it's easy to tell; you don't have to worry about "margin of miss" rules or the like, just straight number comparison. But since Sarah can roll a 14 or 15 and succeed, there's a range where she can succeed and Bob simply can't.

    It also meshes with the Psionics system, which is the only explicit choice on the roll-under mechanics.
    The Cranky Gamer
    *It isn't realism, it's verisimilitude; the appearance of truth within the framework of the game.
    *Picard management tip: Debate honestly. The goal is to arrive at the truth, not at your preconception.
    *Two Tales of Tellene, available from DriveThruFiction
    *The One Deck Engine: Gaming on a budget
    Avatar is from local user Mehangel
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    If you need me to address a thread as a moderator, include a link.

  13. - Top - End - #13
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    Lord Torath's Avatar

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    Default Re: 2nd AD&D Perception checks?

    I also really like the "Roll High But Not Over" mechanic (anyone else remember The Price is Right??). It makes it trivially easy to resolve opposed ability score checks.
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