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BRP variant? roll-over / higher-is-better


g33k

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Pretty much as the Topic says... does anyone know of a BRP variant, clone (erm, "mutant"?), or just "similar" game, which simply reverses the better/worse scale, so "success" is high rolls, not low?

 

Thanks!

 

 

- Steve, the g33k

 

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RoleMaster springs to mind.

 

In it's simplest form you just add the skill score to the die roll and try to get over 100. 

 

The drawbacks to such a system are:

 

1) It's a bit more crunchy. Some people don't like to add, say,47 and 58 to make a skill roll.

2) It's harder to incorporate success levels. 

Chaos stalks my world, but she's a big girl and can take of herself.

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RoleMaster springs to mind.

 

In it's simplest form you just add the skill score to the die roll and try to get over 100. 

 

The drawbacks to such a system are:

 

1) It's a bit more crunchy. Some people don't like to add, say,47 and 58 to make a skill roll.

2) It's harder to incorporate success levels. 

What Atgxtg said. That includes HARP which is much simpler relative to RoleMaster.

Not sure that I agree on Atgxtg 2nd drawback without more explanation.

 

But the first drawback one is dead on. And it all depends on what kind of player group you have. If you have players that don't mind the crunch well just go for it. In our group most are ok except one player but he finds it an acceptable obstacle to the entertaining and brutal combat system.

With the BRP system you don't have to bother about adding the skill and dice roll together you just have so see if it is higher or lower. And if you still want more detail in combat you can just add the hit locations. But things considered we still keep playing RM and in fact I am just about to head of to one of our RM sessions. But BRP is still no. 1 in my eyes though.  :D

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Not sure that I agree on Atgxtg 2nd drawback without more explanation.

 

 

Okay. In BRP you have success levels - that is you can get critical success, special success, fumbles and such depending on the die roll. With a roll low system it's easy to incorporate. The good results are at the low die roll end, bad results at the high end. 

 

But if you use a roll high method, you probably want to put the good results up at the high end. Otherwise it gets complicated because someone with a 90 skill who rolls a 90 (total of 180) will get trumped by someone with a 20 skill who rolls and 01 (a critical in standard BRP). 

 

Now you can try to fix this by "reversing" the success tables, subtracting the success chance from 101% to get a roll high equivalent. For example if someone had a 3% critical chance and a 12% special chance, they'd become critical 98+, special 89+.The bad thing about that is that you would still have to deal with cases where success level would require you to trump the total score. For instance one character might get a total of 150, but lose to a character who only got a 120, but who rolled a 99, and got a critical. 

 

Another option would be to base success levels on the difference between each side's total. Maybe beating the opponent by 50 is a special, beating him by 100 is a critical, or some such. That works, but now ties the result to the opponent's roll. That means that someone will never be able to roll a critical parry to stop a critical hit, and so on.  So you'd probably have to do some more fiddling with the rules. 

 

See what I mean?

Chaos stalks my world, but she's a big girl and can take of herself.

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Success levels in roll-over tend to become linear. E.g. a normal success is to roll 100+ on skill+roll, a special success is 150+ and a critical 200+.

Unlike BRP this means that success levels can become either impossible to attain or trivially easy. For this reason one option is to allow "exploding rolls" - i.e. if you roll 95+ you can roll again and add. That becomes very close to saying that the equivalent of a natural 20 (5% chance) is a special or a critical depending on how good your base skill tends to be. 

 

Another option is to say that if you succeed and roll a double you get a critical while if you fail and roll a double that you fumble. That roughly simulates the 10% critical range of RQ6/Legend et al. However you never get better than an absolute 10% chance of a critical no matter how good you are.

 

So there are fairly simple solutions but none of them are as elegant or scalable as roll-under.

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Yes they are simple, but you loose out on some aspects (increasing with high skill, criticals remaining rare, etc.). There are some other ways to do it, but it's still a trade off.

 

Frankly, if I were going to go with a roll high variant, I probably wouldn't add the skill score at all but still keep it as the target value. Kinda like what Pendragon does. 

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Chaos stalks my world, but she's a big girl and can take of herself.

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just add the skill score to the die roll and try to get over 100. [...] It's a bit more crunchy. Some people don't like to add, say,47 and 58 to make a skill roll.

 

There's a solution (I call it "roll under and add") that doesn't seem to hold much general appeal: compare the result to the skill rating. If R>S, R is your final result (proceed to compare it to the action's target number); if R<=S, your final result is R+100. Basically your best possible roll is R=S, that yields a final result of S+100, and your worst possible roll is R=S+1, that yields a final result of S+1.

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