Monday 29 August 2011

Project Odd: Core Ideals

Another month, another rpg project. This one is purely for personal use as much for enjoyment of the process as anything.

These are the core ideals I want the currently unnamed game to embrace:

- An impartial GM. The GM uses the rules provided to challenge the characters and does not alter the situation to aid or hinder them.
- Adventure Module compatibility. The game assumes the GM is using a pre-planned environment and hazards, whether their own or by another writer. Classic rpg modules will be easily adaptable.
- Rolled characters. The core of your character is random and you do not choose a class. You buy equipment but have no input on your character’s innate abilities.
- Focus on Ability Scores. Rather than being secondary to level and class, a character’s rolled Ability Scores are the most important thing about them. The same goes for Monsters. A Dragon is terrifying because it’s huge (Strength 27?), scaly (Armour 6) and breathes fire (INT Save vs STR or 2d6 Damage!), not because it’s a Level 15 opponent.
- Save against Consequences. The player always has a chance to beat the consequences facing them with a saving throw based around Ability Scores.
- Common sense. The rules are written with the assumption that those playing will agree on a rule’s intention without the need for paragraph-long mechanical explanations.
- Limited power growth. Characters get better through improving their ability scores slightly, but more through learning spells, amassing resources and finding magic treasure.
- Embrace the weird. This game will get scifi, horror and humour in your fantasy, as well as any other genres I see fit.

This will be the first game I've written on a base of D&D, something I think is inevitable for takers with any exposure to the classic game. Next time I'll show you the core of the game: Ability Scores and Saving Throws. If you read my dragon example carefully you can already get a sneak preview of what I have planned.


  1. Really glad I read this! All these aims come across in the rules, either implicitly or explicitly, so I think I'm on the right track GMing.

  2. I think you've got a good start here, but I think you need to make it more modern to really have something memorable. Maybe... Add some electric elements?

    1. Bold, I like where that train of thought is headed. Now hear me out here, what if we added... sapient puppets? Like Fake People. Fakeries... Mockeries if you will.