Showing posts from January, 2021

AD&D1e: open game table

The first of the house rules is to have an  open game table . Any player can come or go at any time. The reason for this is accessibility: if you want people to try your business, product, service or game, you must make it as accessible as possible. Many gamers hold an ideal in their minds of the same group of 4-6 best friends gaming together in some grand epic campaign over 10 years. This is cool, but rarely actually happens. Most commonly a group gets together, and about a third of the time they spend their first session generating characters and the group never meets again, the rest of the time they play for 12-18 sessions before enough players get bored and drift off and the game is suspended indefinitely.  Better to accept that players will come and go, and plan for it by having a constant supply of new players - you need accessibility .  Accessibility  means a few things, Advertising : Before anyone can come, they have to know about your game. When I first started gaming in the

Conflict: Readiness

This article on overcoming the friction of combat, along with the same authour's article on wounding, got me thinking on the ideas which now form Conflict. For those who have not experienced a life-threatening conflict or extreme trauma situation, here is an experiment on feeling adrenaline.  go for a hard  run, flat-out for two minutes - use the timer on your phone. Look before you cross the road, and look at the street signs.  when you feel you can no longer go on, set the timer for another two minutes, and go flat out again .  now stop, and get out your phone, and without looking up for any signs, use it to write down the name of the street you just passed. Try.  place thumb and forefinger against each-other, and rub them together by your ear. See if you can hear them. Try. slap yourself on the thigh. Can you feel it? Try.  Most likely, you cannot remember the name of the street you just passed, your fine motor skills have degraded significantly, and you're almost deaf.  Th

CT: "I died during character generation"

In Classic  Traveller , famously your character can die during character generation. The character generation system has you throw for six attributes, then attempt a four year term or more of service in army, navy, and so on; in each term you gain skills. However, at the end of each term you must roll for survival, to see if something killed you during that term. Keep going for long enough and you gain quite a few skills - if you survive! It's not uncommon for a surviving character to have had 3-6 terms of service, and thus be 30-42 years old. Some lucky or merchant characters may even get into their 50s.  Which is to say that they have already had a life - what will be for many a full career.  One famous science fiction space explorer , for example, died in a reactor repair at 55 years of age after 35 years of service (it is said there were later stories, but this is unproven). And so the player who is creating a CT character is creating one who has  already had a full life  - and

AD&D1e: House Rules

In my campaigns, I use a few house rules designed to create a certain playstyle. I'll talk about each of them in detail in later posts, this is the summary. Open game table - anyone may come or go at any time Bring snacks Character generation : roll 3d6 down the line, choose from fighter, magic-user, cleric or thief. Regardless of rolls, characters may be of any of fighter, magic-user, cleric or thief, but will suffer a 10% malus to XP if they lack a prerequisite attribute. You character may not commit suicide, but if they happen to die, you can roll another character.  No backstory : The Dungeon Master will not test your patience with boxed text, we as a group ask that you return the favour. You don't begin with a story, you create one as a result of play. You will in the game experience a series of events, which you may later choose to tell as a story.  Weapon vs AC : a modified version of these rules are used.  Common Men have 1 weapon proficiency, noncombatants none, and