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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    GnomePirate

    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Appalachian Mountains

    Default Legends [homebrew system] [PEACH]

    Alright, so I was looking at this system, which is designed for running a game in middle earth. Here is a link to the system, which is Free. My goal is to divorce it from the setting, so it can be used as a universal system, and to also give it some more crunch.

    Task Resolution
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    For those who don't want to read through that, here is the basics of the system mechanics. There are a number of skills, which all start at 8, barring racial modifiers. A variable number of d6s is rolled, and the goal is to roll under your skill. The number of dice rolled is determined by the difficulty of the task, which typically range from 1 (easy) to 6 (really hard).

    There are two types of rolls, tests and contests. A test has a difficulty set by the storyteller, and an example of a test might be climbing a tree with Athletics.

    A contest is essentially an opposed skill check. The initiator determines the starting difficulty, and then rolls. If he fails, he fails. If he succeeds, the defender rolls his applicable skill at the same difficulty, or chooses to roll at a higher difficulty. This continues until one fails, thus determining the victor. An example of this would be trying to convince someone to do something they wouldn't normally do, likely with the Friendship or Intimidate skill (opposed by Willpower, typically).

    OK, so that covers basic task resolution. Roll Xd6, with X being the difficulty of the task, on a scale of 1-6. The goal is to roll under your skill level.


    Combat
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    Now on to combat. Here is where I think some changes are needed to make this system work. As written, combat is a contest, and the loser of the contest must then pass a stamina roll (difficulty equal to the failed combat roll), or be 'defeated', defeated typically meaning slain for an extra, or wounded for a named character, grievously enough to be out of the fight, at the least.

    Here is my revision to the combat rules. Initiative is determined arbitrarily, since I haven't worked out a good system for that yet.

    On your turn, you roll an attack roll, which is either melee or archery, unless you are doing something unusual. It would be a ride roll to trample someone while on horseback, for example. You set the difficulty of the roll, which represents how skillful/powerful an attack you make. If you succeed, you score a hit, and the target must roll a stamina roll at the same difficulty, or take a wound. Most extras are defeated if they take a wound, but named npcs and pcs can take multiple wounds. I will cover that system later.

    If you are subjected to a successful attack, you may give up your next action to attempt to defend yourself in some way. You make a roll of an appropriate skill at the same difficulty that the attacker's roll was made at. If you succeed, you evade the attack. You can evade multiple attacks in a turn, but you are at a penalty for doing so. I haven't gone over bonuses and penalties and other modifiers yet, but I will later. One might use Acrobatics to leap out of the way of an attack, or Melee to parry, or Ride to guide your mount away from the attack, for example. In a particularly dramatic game, you might even use Intimidate to stare down your opponent, ruining their attack. It is generally encouraged that you be flexible in terms of what skill can be used here.


    Death and Dying
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    On to wounds for PCs and named NPCs. When a character takes a wound, he must make a second stamina roll, with a difficulty equal to the total wounds taken (including the current one). If he fails, he is mortally wounded, and incurs an additional wound immediately, and is unable to take any actions. He may or may not be able to move or speak, or be conscious, depending what is dramatically appropriate, but any action that requires a roll automatically fails.

    A mortally wounded character must make an additional stamina roll every round, with a difficulty equal to the number of wounds he has taken. If he fails, he incurs an additional wound, and must roll again the next round. If he succeeds, he stabilizes, for the moment. He is still considered to be mortally wounded, and can still not take any actions that require a roll. If he is still left untreated, he must make another roll in one minute. If he fails that roll, he takes a wound, and must begin rolling again every round. If he passes that roll, he does not need to roll again for another hour. If he fails that roll, he takes a wound and must roll again every round. If he passes that roll, he recovers one wound, and must roll again every hour, either failing and taking an additional wound (and starting over), or recovering a wound. He is no longer considered mortally wounded once he passes three consecutive hourly healing rolls.

    Characters with a wound take a penalty equal to the number of wounds, except on stamina rolls to resist bleeding out (as that is already included above).

    A character is dead when he is mortally wounded and his number of wounds exceeds his stamina (as it is then impossible for him to succeed on his stamina roll to resist bleeding out).


    Recovery
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    Ok, so I've covered how damage is dealt, and how one can bleed to death. how do you recover a wound. First is natural healing. You can make one natural healing roll for every hour of rest, which is a stamina roll, with a difficulty equal to the total number of wounds taken. If successful, you recover one wound.

    Second, an appropriate skill roll can be made to tend a character's wounds. One roll can be made per round to stabilize a bleeding out character, at a difficulty equal to the number of wounds. Once successful, the character no longer has to make rolls to resist bleeding out, as long as you continue to tend his wounds. You must continue to care for the mortally wounded character for at least one hour, and the target receives a bonus on his stamina roll to recover a wound. If he succeeds, he is no longer mortally wounded. If he fails, you must make an additional skill roll as he starts to bleed out again.

    Thirdly, spells and magic can be used, with varying degrees of potency depending on the magic/science level of the setting. In Middle Earth, a spells roll can be used as an appropriate skill to tend a subjects wounds, and a successful roll recovers a wound after an hour of treatment, unless the wound was of a particularly grievous nature (such as the Morgul blade). A Magic roll would immediately recover one wound, and completely heal the target after an hour with a successful roll and the expenditure of a story token (again, except for wounds from exceptional sources, such as the Morgul blade).


    Skills
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    Skills in this system are broken down into three groups, Prowess, representing physical skills, Bearing, representing mostly social skills, and Lore, representing knowledge and trade skills.

    Prowess:
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    Acrobatics
    Alertness
    Archery
    Athletics
    Melee
    Riding
    Sneaking
    Stamina


    Bearing:
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    Deceit
    Friendship
    Intimidation
    Leadership
    Magic
    Rhetoric
    Truth
    Willpower


    Lore
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    Art
    Beasts
    Craft
    Regional lore
    Performance
    Spells
    Survival
    Tradeskill


    I don't really agree with how all the skills are matched up, but that is the as-currently written skills. Notably lacking is any kind of medical skill, aside from possibly tradeskill (doctor).


    Story Tokens
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    A character begins the game with a certain number of story tokens, based on their race and class. A hobbit for example gets 4 story tokens. I will be adding a system for designing classes and races, and one of the tradeoffs for a more powerful race/class is to start with less story tokens.

    Story tokens refresh at the beginning of every game session, or, in the case of a marathon 18 hour game, every 3-5 hours or so.

    A story token can be used in the following ways:

    -Rerolling a failed skill check.
    -Dramatic Editting. You can spend a story token to alter a small detail about a scene. This is up to the storyteller's discretion. For example, if you returned to a town to find it burnt to the ground, you could spend a story token for their to be a small group of survivors that made it to a safe place, perhaps with a specific NPC from the town amongst them.
    -Uses of the Magic skill. The Magic skill is used to perform truly wondrous and powerful effects, and its use requires a story token, or possibly more, if you are using weak magic, such as Elven magic in the core rules.


    Spells and Magic
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    There are two skills in this setting that pertain to the use of magic, or, in some settings, advanced science. In some settings, the spells skill should be re-named science, and the magic skill might be re-named psionics, or super-science, or heck, even technobabble.

    The Spells skill represents having a special knowledge of how the universe 'really works'. To those who aren't privy to this information, what you do seems like magic, but it really isn't. For example, in the middle earth setting, words really do have power, and so weapons ensorcelled with runes and speaking the right words to open a sealed door would all be the Spells skill (although Crafts is also involved in making weapons, and magical weapons involve Crafts, Arts, and Spells, and possibly also Magic, depending on what you are doing, which I will get to later).

    Similarly, in say, Greyhawk or Forgotten Realms, throwing a fireball with 'magic' is something that makes perfect sense to someone who knows how. Speak the right words, and make certain passes with your hands, while holding the right components, and certain effects happen in a predictable manner.

    The Magic skill is used for much more potent effects, that is beyond the purview of the Spells skill. In Middle Earth, the forging of the One Ring would have involved the Magic skill, as would Gandalf breaking Saruman's staff, turning pinecones into fiery missiles, and shattering the bridge in Moria.

    Now a look at the mechanics of these two skills. First, use of the Magic skill always requires a story token. If you are using weaker magic, it requires two story tokens for any task with a base dice of 4 or more. The spells skill does not.

    The Spells skill should be able to do the following tasks:
    -Grant a bonus to another skill roll. The difficulty of this roll is equal to the difficulty of the skill roll to be given the bonus, plus the amount of bonus desired. So, to give a bonus to a difficulty 3 skill roll is a difficulty 4 Spells roll, and to give a bonus of two would be a difficulty 5 Spells roll. This is generally the same action as the skill to be boosted, but not always, and typically requires the ability to speak magic words, make strange gestures, or access to components. This can be used to give a bonus to a Magic skill roll as well.

    -When setting appropriate, be used for some form of magical attack. A attack using the Spells skill will always allow the target to resist, without forfeiting their next action to do so, and without a penalty to future rolls to avoid an attack. A wizard casting a fireball would be rolling Spells to hit, and the opponent would likely use Acrobatics to dodge (or possibly Spells to use a counterspell).

    An attack spell that can effect multiple targets should have a penalty based on the area it effects, or on the number it effects, if it effects multiple targets without hitting an 'area'.

    -More as they come to mind.

    The following effects are the purview of Magic:
    -Replacing another skill roll with a Magic roll, especially Prowess skills.
    -Making a magical attack. An attack made with the magic skill does not allow any defense except with the Magic skill, or with the Spells skill at a penalty. Defending against Magic with Magic requires a story token, as with any other use of Magic.
    -Dramatic and powerful effects, such as stopping time.

    With dramatic uses of Magic, the sky is the limit. The storyteller assigns a difficulty based on how powerful the effect is. If you want to call down a meteor to destroy the planet, that is probably going to have a pretty high difficulty, possibly in the 7 or 8 range. Magical effects with a difficulty of 8 or higher require an additional story token per 4 difficulties above 4. With weaker magic, an extra story token is required for magic with a difficulty of 4 or higher.





    Character Creation
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    1) Determine whether or not you have access to magic, and whether you have Magic or "Weaker Magic". If you have access to Magic, you receive 2 story tokens, if you have access to Weaker Magic, you receive 3 story tokens. If you do not have magic, you receive 4 story tokens.

    2) Assign Skills. You may assign a +2 to any 10 skills. You may select one skill which you can take three times (+6), and two skills which you may take two times (+4). You may take a -2 penalty on two skills in the same group to get an extra +2 to assign as normal.

    3) Spend starting advancement levels (usually two).


    Glossary
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    Base Dice: the number of dice rolled before bonuses and penalties are applied. In a contested roll or in combat, the base dice is the number of dice your opponent must roll, before his modifiers.

    Bonus: Every bonus you have on a roll removes a die from your roll (before the roll is made). Expressed as a bonus or bonuses on the roll. (i.e. you are at a bonus to this roll, or at a bonus of two to this roll).

    Penalty: Every penalty you have on a roll adds a die to your roll. Expressed as apenalty or penalties on the roll.(i.e. you are at a penalty to this roll, or at a penalty of two to this roll).

    Modifier: Certain items increase or decrease your actual skill (in my version of the rules, not in the core rules). Expressed as +/- X to a skill. (i.e. the crossbow gives a +2 to the user's archery skill)

    Level: Some advancements reference a level of the advancement. An advancements level is equal to the number of points in the advancement.

    Increment: Some advancements reference increments. Increments are the levels at which an advancement gives additional benefit. The increments use a mathematical function I don't recall the name of:
    1/3/6/10/15/21/28/36/45/55/66/78/...
    Last edited by Skjaldbakka; 2008-05-02 at 05:05 AM.
    Aratos Tell
    HP:53/53 AC:19,FlatFooted:16,Touch:13
    Active Effects: Speak w/Animals
    Spells Prepared: Cure Minor Wounds*4, Flare, Calm Animals, Charm Animal, Cure Light Wounds, Animal Messenger, Flaming Sphere, Lesser Restoration, Hold Animal, Cure Mod. Wounds*2, Speak w/Plants

    Megiddo
    HP:26/26 PP: 40/40 AC:14,FlatFooted:13,Touch:13
    Active Effects:
    Spells Prepared: Light*2, Burning Hands*2, Protection f/Evil, Magic Missile, Shocking Grasp, See Invis., Acid Arrow, Scorching Ray*2

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    GnomePirate

    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Appalachian Mountains

    Default Re: Legends of Middle Earth RPG (tweaking)

    Advancements:
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    Every game session, a player should receive 3-5 advancement points. At character creation, 2 starting advancement points are recommended (referenced above as 'special abilities'). The following Advancements can be purchased. Advancements follow a certain pattern, each increment is the total number of advancement points that need to be spent to gain that level of the advancement.

    Extra Story Token (1/3/6/10/15/...)
    -each increment gained in this advancement grants the use of an additional story token each session.

    Mighty Prowess (1/3/6/10/15/...)
    1- When you spend a story token to re-roll a failed Prowess Skill, you gain a bonus on that roll.
    3- You may spend a story token to gain a bonus on all Prowess rolls made for 1 round, or for all rolls made in a single Prowess contest.
    6- You may spend a story token to gain a bonus on all Prowess rolls for the rest of the scene.
    11- You gain a special "Prowess" story token, which can only be spent to augment Prowess rolls.
    15/...- You gain an additional "Prowess" token for each additional invrement of this advancement. All of your Prowess skills improve by 1 for each additional increment of this advancement.

    Regal Bearing (1/3/6/10/15/...)
    1- When you spend a story token to re-roll a failed Bearing Skill, you gain a bonus on that roll.
    3- You may spend a story token to gain a bonus on all Bearing rolls made for 1 round, or for all rolls made in a single Bearing contest.
    6- You may spend a story token to gain a bonus on all Bearing rolls for the rest of the scene.
    11- You gain a special "Bearing" story token, which can only be spent to augment Bearing rolls.
    15/...- You gain an additional "Bearing" token for each additional increment of this advancement. All of your Bearing skills improve by 1 for each additional increment of this advancement.

    Sage Lore (1/3/6/10/15/...)
    1- When you spend a story token to re-roll a failed Lore Skill, you gain a bonus on that roll.
    3- You may spend a story token to gain a bonus on all Lore rolls made for 1 round, or for all rolls made in a single Lore contest.
    6- You may spend a story token to gain a bonus on all Lore rolls for the rest of the scene.
    11- You gain a special "Lore" story token, which can only be spent to augment Lore rolls.
    15/...- You gain an additional "Lore" token for each additional increment of this advancement. All of your Lore skills improve by 1 for each additional increment of this advancement. Only one type of Regional Lore or Tradeskill is improved at each level.

    Improved Skill, ____ (1/3/6/10/15/...)
    -The chosen skill improves by 2 for each level of this advancement. This advancement is taken seperately for each skill.

    Increased (Prowess/Bearing/Lore) (1/3/6/10/15/...)
    -You increase three skills in the appropriate category by 1 for each level of this advancement. This advancement is taken seperately for each skill group. You are not required to advance the same set of skills with each level of this advancement.

    Jack of All Trades (1/3/6/10/15/...)
    -You increase two skills by 1 for each level of this advancement. You do not need to select the same skills for each level of this advancement.

    Field of Blood (-/3/-/10/15/...)
    3- All unnamed opponents are at a penalty to attack you, defend against your attacks, and to resist damage from your attacks. This has no effect on named opponents or attacks made with Spells or Magic.
    10- As level 3, but the penalty applies to all opponents without Field of Blood 3.
    15/...- As level 10, but the penalty applies to all opponents with a lower level of Field of Blood. Unnamed opponents are now at a penalty of two.

    Majestic Presence (-/3/-/10/15/...)
    3- All unnamed opponents are at a penalty on any Bearing contests against you, and you receive a free re-roll on one failed Bearing roll against a unnamed opponent per scene. This does not apply to uses of the Magic skill.
    10- As level 3, but to all opponents w/o Majestic Presence 3
    15/...- As level 10, but to all opponents with a lower level of Majestic Presence. You may re-roll a failed Bearing roll any number of times per scene (but still only once per test or contest).

    Wisdom of the Ages (-/3/-/10/15/...)
    3- All unnamed opponents are at a penalty on any Lore contests against you. You receive a bonus on all Lore tests. This does not apply to uses of the Spells skill.
    10- As level three, but applies to all opponents without Wisdom of the Ages 3.
    15/...- As level 10, but applies to all opponents with a lower level of Wisdom of the Ages. A Lore skill of your choice (other than spells) improves by 1 for each additional level of this advancement beyond 15.

    Fell Blade (-/-/6/-/-/21/-/-/47/...)
    6- Opponents are at a penalty to resist damage from your successful offensive uses of the Melee skill.
    21- You may give your opponent a bonus on their roll to resist damage from your Melee attack rolls (negating the penalty from level 6 of this advancement). If you do, you inflict an additional wound if they fail to resist the damage.
    47/... Opponents are at a penalty to resist damage from your successful offensive uses of the Melee skill. This continues to cycle in the same manner as 6 and 21, alternating an increasing penalty to resist damage with an option to deal additional damage.

    Lucky Number (-/3/-/10/15) might also be called Luckbearer
    3- You may spend story tokens to allow an ally to re-roll a failed roll. This decision is made out of game, so it can be used on skill rolls that you do not know about IG.
    10- You may spend story tokens to force an enemy to re-roll a successful skill check against you or an ally. This decision is made OOG, and so can be used against attacks made from surprise, for example.
    15- Rerolls you grant to allies are now made at a bonus, and rerolls you force on enemies are now made at a penalty. This has no effect on rerolls you make yourself.

    Black Arrow (-/-/6/-/-/21/-/-/47/...)
    6- Opponents are at a penalty to resist damage from your successful offensive uses of the Archery skill.
    21- You may give your opponent a bonus on their roll to resist damage from your Archery attack rolls (negating the penalty from level 6 of this advancement). If you do, you inflict an additional wound if they fail to resist the damage.
    47/... Opponents are at a penalty to resist damage from your successful offensive uses of the Archery skill. This continues to cycle in the same manner as 6 and 21, alternating an increasing penalty to resist damage with an option to deal additional damage.

    Skilled Defender (1/3/6/10/15/...)
    Each increment of this advancement allows you to negate one penalty for making multiple defenses in a single turn.

    Master of Strategy (-/3/-/10/-/21/...)
    For every other increment of this advancement, you retain the bonus from rolling the highest number of intitiave dice for an additional round.

    Master of Tactics (-/3/-/10/-/21/...)
    3- You gain a bonus on your intitiative roll.
    10- You may re-roll your intiative roll once per combat, or the initiative roll of one of your allies.
    21- You may select an opponent to be at a penalty to their initiative roll. You may select an additional opponent for each additional increment of this advancement. If the storyteller is using group initiative for unnamed opponents, the penalty applies to the group (but does not stack). You may not select the same opponent twice with this advancement.


    Initiative
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    Finally worked out how I plan to do this. Every character involved in the combat secretly selects a number of dice, representing how much time they spend taking stock of the situation, looking for ways to gain an advantage. Then the dice are rolled, and the character with the lowest roll goes first, and actions are taken in ascending order. In the case of a tie, the character that rolled the smaller number of dice goes first. The character that rolled the highest number of dice gains a bonus on all Prowess rolls made in the first round of combat. In the case of a tie, all tied parties gain a bonus.

    Unnamed NPCs always roll average on initiative (3.5 x # of dice rolled, rounded down), unless there is a small enough group of them that the storyteller decided to actually roll.

    If you would be at a penalty to this roll, you are considered to have rolled one less than you actually rolled, and you must roll a number of dice equal to at least your total penalties +1. If you are at a bonus to this roll, you are considered to have rolled one greater die than you actually rolled.
    Last edited by Skjaldbakka; 2008-05-02 at 05:28 AM.
    Aratos Tell
    HP:53/53 AC:19,FlatFooted:16,Touch:13
    Active Effects: Speak w/Animals
    Spells Prepared: Cure Minor Wounds*4, Flare, Calm Animals, Charm Animal, Cure Light Wounds, Animal Messenger, Flaming Sphere, Lesser Restoration, Hold Animal, Cure Mod. Wounds*2, Speak w/Plants

    Megiddo
    HP:26/26 PP: 40/40 AC:14,FlatFooted:13,Touch:13
    Active Effects:
    Spells Prepared: Light*2, Burning Hands*2, Protection f/Evil, Magic Missile, Shocking Grasp, See Invis., Acid Arrow, Scorching Ray*2

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