This is a site for discussing roleplaying games. Have fun doing so, but there is one major rule: do not discuss political issues that aren't directly and uniquely related to the subject of the thread and about gaming. While this site is dedicated to free speech, the following will not be tolerated: devolving a thread into unrelated political discussion, sockpuppeting (using multiple and/or bogus accounts), disrupting topics without contributing to them, and posting images that could get someone fired in the workplace (an external link is OK, but clearly mark it as Not Safe For Work, or NSFW). If you receive a warning, please take it seriously and either move on to another topic or steer the discussion back to its original RPG-related theme.
The message boards have been upgraded. Please log in to your existing account by clicking here. It will ask twice, so that it can properly update your password and login information. If it has trouble recognizing your password, click the 'Forgot your password?' link to reset it with a new password sent to your email address on file.

Author Topic: Old school questions  (Read 3576 times)

Bren

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7544
    • View Profile
    • http://honorandintrigue.blogspot.com/
Old school questions
« Reply #90 on: August 26, 2020, 11:53:55 am »
Quote from: mAcular Chaotic;1146553
The idea is you get another chance to live... but what if people just bring along 50 shields...
Then their opponents will cut them off from the train of 10 pack mules carrying all those shields. Seriously though, having a squire or retainer who carries an extra shield for the hero fits certain settings e.g. Arthurian Knights. Another example is the duel in "The 13th Warrior" where the duelists start out with 3 shields each and are allowed to pick up a new one when one is wrecked.

Quote from: Steven Mitchell;1146558
I prefer to use such a rule only when also using critical hits.  Sacrifice your shield, turn what was a critical into a regular hit.  You still get hit.
I like that.
Currently running: Boot Hill 2E      Currently playing:_D&D 5E and Call of Cthulhu
My Blog: For Honor...and Intrigue
I now have a gold medal from Ravenswing and Gronan now owes me 9 beers and I owe him 2 beers.
And this just in, jeff37923 has jumped on the beer wagon. He now owes me 1 beer.

mAcular Chaotic

  • All Evils of this World
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2046
    • View Profile
Old school questions
« Reply #91 on: August 26, 2020, 05:53:28 pm »
Negating critical hits is good except that is supposed to be the role of adamantine armor. Hmm...

In any case, this is a common houserule I've seen proposed on OSR blogs, so I thought it was interesting.
Battle doesn't need a purpose; the battle is its own purpose. You don't ask why a plague spreads or a field burns. Don't ask why I fight.

Pat

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • P
  • Posts: 1944
    • View Profile
Old school questions
« Reply #92 on: August 26, 2020, 06:28:25 pm »
Quote from: mAcular Chaotic;1146585
Negating critical hits is good except that is supposed to be the role of adamantine armor. Hmm...
Not in old school D&D. Adamantite was just required to make +5 armor and weapons (in AD&D).

estar

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 9625
    • View Profile
Old school questions
« Reply #93 on: August 26, 2020, 06:28:46 pm »
Quote from: mAcular Chaotic;1146553
The idea is you get another chance to live... but what if people just bring along 50 shields...
would not be inconsistent with how things worked in our middle ages.

HappyDaze

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • H
  • Posts: 2700
    • View Profile
Old school questions
« Reply #94 on: August 26, 2020, 07:40:28 pm »
Quote from: mAcular Chaotic;1146553
The idea is you get another chance to live... but what if people just bring along 50 shields...


That's not at all uncommon, especially when you're bringing along 50 armed & armored followers

estar

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 9625
    • View Profile
Old school questions
« Reply #95 on: August 26, 2020, 11:54:35 pm »
Quote from: Pat;1146555
Not a huge fan, feels too metagamey, like a once an encounter absolute defense.
A shield gets about 40 hit points, if the attacker misses you by 1, they hit your shield instead dealing damage. Axes do double damage. A loose translation of various medieval researchers found about the durability of shields in melee combat.

A shield with the rim edged with leather formed in a way so that it shrinks to hold the planks together and then faced with leather can survive about six axe blows. And considerably more blows from a sword or spear. Given the average damage of various weapons in classic DnD this works out to about 40 hit points.

Alternately you can use this from Judges Guild's Dungeon Tac Card from the 1970s.

SHIELDING (optional)
Shielding can only be performed with a shield (oddly enough). Your shield will absorb a certain number of hit points before being destroyed. After announcing that you are shielding in your round (by which you give up your chance to strike), you then roll for the following if you are hit by the opponent in his upcoming round (however, hits from behind are not affected by shielding). Roll 2 dice (dice type is based on your Dexterity rating).

GP Cost/Encum./Damage Pts.
Damage Pts. - able to absorb before being destroyed.
Large - Small
Leather 12/100/16 - 7/50/9
Iron 25/150/25 - 15/90/15
Wood 15/120/20 - 10/60/11
Wicker 8/80/12 - 5/40/7

WillInNewHaven

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • W
  • Posts: 652
    • View Profile
Old school questions
« Reply #96 on: August 27, 2020, 10:23:29 am »
Quote from: mAcular Chaotic;1146523
What do you guys think of this house rule I see floating around OSR blogs: "Shields Will Be Splintered. When a player takes damage, they can sacrifice their shield to negate that damage."

Good? Bad? Too easy?


Bad, not old school. It requires that the player, in the midst of gameplay, make a decision that the character cannot even know about. It could be nuanced so that the character could decide "I interpose my shield" but that's what one does with a shield anyway.

Kyle Aaron

  • high-minded hack
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 8875
  • high-minded hack
    • View Profile
    • The Viking Hat GM
Old school questions
« Reply #97 on: August 27, 2020, 11:03:48 am »
Quote from: estar;1146619
A shield with the rim edged with leather formed in a way so that it shrinks to hold the planks together and then faced with leather can survive about six axe blows. And considerably more blows from a sword or spear. Given the average damage of various weapons in classic DnD this works out to about 40 hit points.
It would seem simpler to say, "Each time your shield stops a blow, roll 1d6; on a 6, it's shattered and useless."
Rules for effective DMing:
1. Bring snacks.
2. The dice are always right.
3. I master the game, the game does not master me.
4. Momentum over perfection.
5. The game must go on!
https://vikinghatgm.blogspot.com

Zalman

  • RPG Evangelist
  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 442
    • View Profile
Old school questions
« Reply #98 on: August 27, 2020, 11:47:26 am »
Quote from: estar;1146619
if the attacker misses you by 1, they hit your shield instead
If we're going for emulation here, wouldn't the nearest miss be best represented as "stopped by armor", with the furthest misses being blows avoided entirely and missed-because-of-shield somewhere in between? Just sayin' :)

I like the simplicity of Kyle's idea, but then any such rule begs the question: why doesn't armor also get destroyed in play? Mixing armor class and some form of damage reduction from armor (or shields!) never seems to work out in play to my satisfaction.

(Edit: I am reminded of the old "I try to hit it in the head for extra damage!" You're always trying to hit it in some extra-vulnerable spot, just as much as you're always trying to block blows -- or critical hits -- with your shield.)
« Last Edit: August 27, 2020, 12:00:30 pm by Zalman »
Zal

Old School? Back in my day we just called it "School"

Ghostmaker

  • Chlorine trifluoride
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 884
    • View Profile
Old school questions
« Reply #99 on: August 27, 2020, 11:54:41 am »
The more I think about 'sacrifice your shield to block a critical hit', the more I kinda like it.

If I was doing this for Pathfinder...

Shield Block: If you are subject to a critical hit, after the confirmation but before damage is rolled, you may opt to use your shield (if you have one) to absorb the brunt of the blow. A nonmagical shield immediately loses half its hit points and gains the broken condition. A magical shield can make a Fortitude saving throw (using either its bearer's Fortitude or 2+ half the caster level for the item, whichever is better) to reduce the damage by half. The DC is equal to the damage dealt.

Example: Ronald the Fighter is unlucky enough to be critical hit by an orc wielding a falchion (will deal 4d4+8 damage). Ronald is wearing a heavy steel shield (hardness 10, HP 20). Ronald opts to shield block and his heavy steel shield is now broken (with all the penalties that accrues).  

Second example: Ronald the Mighty is still unlucky with orcs hitting him, but this time he is wearing a +1 adamantine heavy shield (hardness 15, HP 30). This time, Ronald opts to save against the swing, which will still damage his shield but (hopefully) not break it.

Hmmm. This might need more fine-tuning.

estar

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 9625
    • View Profile
Old school questions
« Reply #100 on: August 27, 2020, 07:26:09 pm »
Quote from: Kyle Aaron;1146669
It would seem simpler to say, "Each time your shield stops a blow, roll 1d6; on a 6, it's shattered and useless."


Doesn't seem like how it works in life it more about being worn away. I am not keen on going to the level of detail Judges Guilds does but just assigning a flat total seems to be right way to go if a shield sacrifice seems too metagamey.

estar

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 9625
    • View Profile
Old school questions
« Reply #101 on: August 27, 2020, 07:29:58 pm »
Quote from: WillInNewHaven;1146663
Bad, not old school. It requires that the player, in the midst of gameplay, make a decision that the character cannot even know about. It could be nuanced so that the character could decide "I interpose my shield" but that's what one does with a shield anyway.
Circa 1977, Judges Guild. Doesn't really get much more old school.

[ATTACH=CONFIG]4792[/ATTACH] [ATTACH=CONFIG]4793[/ATTACH]

estar

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 9625
    • View Profile
Old school questions
« Reply #102 on: August 27, 2020, 07:43:59 pm »
Quote from: Zalman;1146673
If we're going for emulation here, wouldn't the nearest miss be best represented as "stopped by armor", with the furthest misses being blows avoided entirely and missed-because-of-shield somewhere in between? Just sayin' :)


It a wash, either way there is a 5% chance in the 1 to 20 that a miss occurs because the combatant was wielding a shield. Miss by 1 is far more playable than the alternative in the campaign I ran with Swords & Wizardry and my Majestic Fantasy rules.

Quote from: Zalman;1146673

I like the simplicity of Kyle's idea, but then any such rule begs the question: why doesn't armor also get destroyed in play? Mixing armor class and some form of damage reduction from armor (or shields!) never seems to work out in play to my satisfaction.
Because accounts of shield (and weapons) are far more frequent than armor getting hacked up to the point where it falls off of the person's body. As for damage reduction, it works as a mechanic but doesn't feel very D&Dish in my opinion. In contrast The miss by 1 rule (or the reverse) flows out of how the to-hit roll interacts with armor class.

Quote from: Zalman;1146673

(Edit: I am reminded of the old "I try to hit it in the head for extra damage!" You're always trying to hit it in some extra-vulnerable spot, just as much as you're always trying to block blows -- or critical hits -- with your shield.)
I allow that in my campaign, except the target gets a saving throw. The general idea is that the result of a successful attack doesn't have to be hit point damage, it can be some disadvantageous to the target. But the catch is like anything else "bad" that happens to a character (PC or NPC) the target gets a saving throw. So things like hitting a target in the back of the head, knocking a chalice out of their hand, tripping a combatant, become things to attempt when the situation is right.

Also they not as likely to work against a higher level or hit dice foe. If you look how these are handled in other system like GURPS, Runequest etc. They involve to a greater or lesser degrees use of a character's skill. A result special manuevuers don't work as often against a highly skilled combatant combat. The use of a saving throw to resolve whether a "combat stunt" works out because it gets easier to make as the character levels.

You can read how I handle it here
http://www.batintheattic.com/downloads/MW%20Majestic%20Fantasy%20Basic%20RPG%20Rev%2010.pdf

I also expanding and revising these rules and started a kickstarter to pay for the editing and some art.
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/batintheatticgames/the-majestic-fantasy-rpg

mAcular Chaotic

  • All Evils of this World
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2046
    • View Profile
Old school questions
« Reply #103 on: August 30, 2020, 03:35:56 am »
I've finally started running the game! The players are taking to it and lots more are interested.

One of them pointed out that with the gold for XP setup that the local town they all spend their money in is going to turn into El Dorado. Is it common to run these games with silver as the XP currency instead?
Battle doesn't need a purpose; the battle is its own purpose. You don't ask why a plague spreads or a field burns. Don't ask why I fight.

Premier

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • P
  • Posts: 1140
    • View Profile
Old school questions
« Reply #104 on: August 30, 2020, 04:18:52 am »
Quote from: mAcular Chaotic;1146956
I've finally started running the game! The players are taking to it and lots more are interested.

One of them pointed out that with the gold for XP setup that the local town they all spend their money in is going to turn into El Dorado. Is it common to run these games with silver as the XP currency instead?

Well, that feature is actually sort of built into old-school D&D anyway. The price lists found in the books are utterly out of whack with reality and with how much a gold coin was actually worth in history. One could easily argue that the prices already factor in a boomtown inflation.

But switching over to a silver standard and replacing treasure accordingly is also a perfectly workable solution that people do.
Obvious troll is obvious. RIP, Bill.