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About Algesan

  • Rank


  • RPG Biography
    Pretty much anything from OD&D onwards through the 80s
  • Current games
    Variants of multiple genres using AD&D/OSRIC
  • Blurb
    I'm just here to do some research
  1. Character Creation - Figuring Skill Caps

    I'll give you the point on balance here, but I think we mainly agree and are talking past each other a bit. Okay, I'm confused about the use of Base Chance in BRP then. Isn't the calculation for your starting percentage = Base Chance + Skill Category Bonus + Points spent from either the Professional or Personal pools? I'm not sure how you are figuring that. Actually, rereading the section on Base Chances (pg 48, BRB) says that each skill's Base Chance is what every character starts with for that skill before points are added. The only actual problem with that comment comes from the various weapons which use the same skill, but have different Base Chance numbers. What I'm using for a house rule (since it obviously isn't clear or official) is that when a character is created, the weaponry the character starts with equals the Base Chance and the skill isn't altered by using different versions of the same weapon. Note that this only relates to weapons, every other skill in the game has one and only one Base Chance percentage. The other issue I have is that some weapons aren't covered correctly. A buckler (the center grip 6-12" version anyway) is more of a Brawling weapon in many respects (especially given that the fight books we have from the Middle Ages and later include "Brawling" and "Grappling" style moves), just like a short version of a short sword is pretty much a long dagger so I'd let either skill work for that weapon. I'm not going to get into the fact that brass knuckles are "Brawling", while cestus and armored gauntlets are "Hand"....WTH, over? 1&2. Two ways I'm going to deal with that one. They get to spend 10% of their "professional" points in upgrading a skill, which must go into the skills listed for their profession. The "personal" points (INTx10 in BRB) must be spent on other skills with the same +X limit...with the proviso that they can use those points to raise some of their professional skills up to 50% (I've done up a few starting characters simulating 2x four person parties) and this works out rather well IMO. A number of skills end up in the 40s, but some skills ended up in the 50%+ range. 3. Absolute best, they could have a +20% Category bonus, which would mean they rolled at least three 18s, which would give then some real high combat numbers for starting skill. More than likely I'll be seeing ~10% Category bonus, which would mean skills in the mid-50s at best, but as you pointed out, it doesn't really matter in the long run if they get a small leg up. 4. (sigh) And that is the problem, just one really, but I'm used to it. Always "enhancing" those combat abilities. Amusing how it shows up when he GMs though. Pretty much run a fighter type and gets slightly pissed that, although strictly by the rules, a well played wizard is survivable and does more damage than the fighters that could ginsu the wizard in melee. OTOH, that is one reason I picked BRB to swap over to, a "fighter" is just a character that knows a lot of weapon related skill and a "wizard" is just a character that has maybe one weapon skill because the rest are in spell related skills, but both can melee effectively enough. Interestingly enough, it gets to be real old school when the OD&D cleric was supposed to be more of a religious warrior (think paladin) with some casting skill and a bit lesser fighting skill.
  2. Character Creation - Figuring Skill Caps

    Well, there has to be some balance, but if anyone thinks that AD&D characters are balanced, then they are mistaken. Note: I didn't go past 1st Ed AD&D, so I cannot speak to later versions of D&D in the post-Gygax era. I never did RQ, but I did do quite a bit with the original Stormbringer and Hawkmoon games. They were a bit easier (if less "realistic") to do with roll, stats, roll (or pick) class and get skills A, B, C, D, E, & F at a fixed percentage plus bonus with a d6+2 other skills at a d50 plus bonus. Converting over from what is basically AD&D, but set in the starship Warden. It actually is working a lot better, except the characters are close to completing that game (and actually we could finish the main arc by simply doing some choices and me telling the story of what happened). The only thing left would be lots of details, which just consume time without actually doing anything new. The original question did come up because one of the characters was using the BRP Laser Pistol (directly replacing the base MA laser pistol) and decided to go with one of the disruptors (I got rid of the Protein/Metal variation since it was only useful in the context of the original MA system) that I had ruled as a BRP Disintegrator Pistol. The Laser has a 20% Base and the Disintegrator has a 5% Base which caused a little question, but since the cap on the conversion was 101%, it wasn't that big a deal. On the character creation front, I was looking and seeing some issues where starting character X starts with a Buckler (5%) and uses that to reach the cap, then swaps out for any other shield to get an extra +10%. Some other such games are possible among the weapons. Looking beyond my next game I'm running (where the starting characters will have fixed skills, gear and equipment for the Professional points), I'm actually going to probably go with the suggestion of Nick Middleton above where players can add X point max to any one skill, which leaves out the hard cap and still limits the starting percentages to a close range of what I'm looking for.
  3. Character Creation - Figuring Skill Caps

    Actually, thanks for some answers, especially if there is no official response for this. What I've boiled it down to is that for "hard" caps in character creation, that Cap = Base + Bonus + Points spent....and if it just so happens that Base + Bonus > Cap, then so it is and congrats on your good stats. For weapons, since I'm pretty much handing out the starting weapons (i.e. what they have skill in), then they have to use the Base associated with their starting weapon...and if they get one with a bigger Base, good for them and if they get one with a lower Base, too bad, so sad (at least you didn't need to pay for another skill). Finally for the specific campaign, I simply kind of stole a bit from the NPC list and gave them the same skills (in this case, since they are all just coming out of training) and locked many of those at what I wanted for the starting max...including the weapons they start with. Yeah, it takes a little bit of figuring after accounting for the bonus, but they can spend any extra points in Professional skills I neglected to take to the Cap.
  4. Character Creation - Figuring Skill Caps

    Thanks for the input.
  5. Hitpoint-less combat

    And part of that issue just depends on the person {shrug}. Nothing wrong with the idea itself, as I pointed out my local group has long done a "minion" style thing that allowed for quick kills of swarming fodder. OTOH, to do the Star Wars type thing, you pretty much have to take away all chance of them hitting (or insure that their weaponry sucks so badly compared to the PCs armor) because you don't want a chance crit popping through using this system. "Opps, sorry, peon #69 just popped a crit on you, so make your roll" "Oh darn I failed" "Well, that's that, let's see if you survived after the battle after we finish up" OTOH, using the minion rule (one hit, two hit, three hit minions), they can still attack with their low levels of proficiency because the PCs will still be using their hitpoints to take the damage while still providing a bit of potential drama while not clogging up the system with a bunch of dice rolling.
  6. Hitpoint-less combat

    I like the idea of the resistance roll for weapon/shield breakage on parries, but for the purposes of simplifying minion fighting (definition of minion: low HP, low AP swarms meant to be butchered) in my group (no clue who started this, but we all do it), we simply make them "one hit", "two hit" or "three hit" types. Damage doesn't matter, just how many times they've been hit. Yes, evaluating how many hits they take does have something to do with comparing damage vs armor, but it works out rather well. Other than that, it is an interesting system, although as was proposed, I might want it to have a few more "steps" on the way down to "out of the fight", especially for PCs. Heh, started to give suggestions, but realized that worked against the idea of rolling for the actual damage at the end of the fight.
  7. Okay, maybe I missed this in the BRB, but I'm trying to work this since while I'm currently doing a familiarization run with converted characters, I plan on starting a new campaign with new characters later and this has been brought up. The question is about skill percentage caps. For purposes of this discussion, assume creating characters with skill cap of 50% 1. Skill category bonuses: Do they add on top of the skill cap or are they part of the skill cap? 2. Using the assumption that the Base Chance for a skill simply gives a "bonus" of free points, so that it only costs, for example, 20 points to max First Aid at 50, how does one handle skills with variable Base Chance, specifically weapons. Energy Pistols can be from 5% to 20% base chance, so does the character have to be capped at 50% including the base chance (and category bonus?) depending on the weapon they use? Or in the case of weapons (which is really the only place this applies), does the character get to buy the skill up to Max Skill -5 (minimum base chance) or does their starting Max Skill depend on the weapon they use? (NOTE: I'm just seeing some potential for even accidental min-maxing going on by buying up the skill using a lower Base weapon, then swapping out quickly to a higher base weapon, but given that this also affects skill increase rolls, it can be an issue.) Thanks.
  8. Friends, Romans, countrymen....

    Heh, more accurately, modeled on some mythical version of this particular historical European empire. Even the Romans were well aware that they were mixing in "good stories" to substitute for more pedestrian facts to spice up their history..... Well, I could say that there is one other historical empire similar to it, that of Victorian England...and both of them happened to include historical myth-making of unbelievable proportions that were accepted as "facts" by contemporaries and later historians. Interestingly enough, the major purpose in both cases was to highlight the superiority of their own culture at that time in all possible manners. Oh, having read the Dark Osprey Roman Cthulhu book now, yep, it is for background setting for the period. So, I'd go with Drake's Vettius book as a primary example if I was going to do a Roman one myself. A few primaries, with at least one being a Roman noble (minor is fine) type so they can get legionnaires as red shirts as needed.
  9. Friends, Romans, countrymen....

    David Drake, Vettius and His Friends Great series about a Roman officer going around being a troubleshooter for the weird and mysterious. Amazon. David Drake's Page Also, he has another book called Killer, but instead of the supernatural, this one is an alien escaped from its keepers. Both are out of print, but you might find them for free on the Baen Books page. A game based on them would be more episodic, think weird mystery of the week with a recurring cast. For Rome (and then Hundred Years War English) meet Cthulhu as he is rising....the Ranks of Bronze series, which you can get electronically, but that is the aliens buy some legionnaires being sold as slaves after one of the big defeats and using them for low tech warrior slaves. I just got, but haven't read the Dark Osprey book about the Cthulhu Campaigns in Ancient Rome but the USA book is pretty cute. EDIT: Okay, I glanced over the Dark Osprey book quickly. It is definitely big picture, but you could probably use the stuff in there to get the core background for several campaigns.
  10. Ark_of_the_Apocalypse.pdf

    Never mind, fixed it, my security software was picking up a cross scripting attempt by the file(s). I just did a temp turn off and it worked fine. This XML file does not appear to have any style information associated with it. The document tree is shown below. Keep getting an error when trying to download this. It is a flaky error, it seems to be hitting everything before August 2015, although I did get the Folio of Fiends & Big Darn Book of Monsters, everything before that fails to load for the same reason, so I'm guessing some sort of setting on the file.