Saturday, December 29, 2018

Reading Books

Upon picking up a book, you'll be given the title - if it's in a language you can read - and a very short, simple explanation of what the book is about. I don't want to force players to read the books just to know what they're about, if it isn't any use to them or they're not interested, then they should be able to tell from the title and short synopsis.

Whole system as James Young's, but more forgiving.

For every two hours of study, you can roll for questions about the book, compared to James' one hour.

Your roll starts at 1d6, compared to James' 1d4.

So studying:

1 book lets you roll 1d6
2 books lets you roll 1d8
3 books lets you roll 1d10
4 books lets you roll 1d12
5 books lets you roll 
6 books lets you roll 

on the following table:

1.   Knowledge eludes you.
2.   Yes or no to a simple question.
3.   Yes or no to a complex question.
4.   Short answer to a simple question.
5.   As 4, roll 1d4.
6.   As 4, roll 1d4 twice.
7.   Full sentence answer to a simple question.
8.   As 7 and 2.
9.   As 7 and 3.
10. Full sentence answer to a complex question.
11. Detailed answer to a simple question.
12. As 11 and 4.
13. As 11 and 7.
14. As 11 and 10.
15. As 11 and 10 and 7.
16. As 11 and 10 and 7 and 4.

Probably just goes with James' system in a pinch.

Book Generator

Made possible by this genius.

A Scholarly Essay
Absentminded Musings
Incoherent Ravings
Drunken Ramblings
Short Parables
Collected Anecdotes
Short Stories
A Novel
Passed Down Tribal Knowledge
A Formal History
The/A Taxonomy
An Ecological Lesson
One Man's Thoughts On
One Woman's Thoughts On
Illustrated Field Guide
The Innermost Thoughts and Secrets
The Financial Ramifications
Alchemical Manual
Painter's Guide To
Informative Pamphlet
Sexual Fantasies

To Do With
On the Subject Of

Written By
Penned By
Put To Paper By
Recorded By
Collected By
Authored By
Constructed By
Dreamt By

Great Serpents
Common Game Animals
Magical Artifacts
Lost Cities
Siege Weaponry

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Called shots, notches and the weapon abilities tied to them.

I've been playing around with notches, working off Logan Knight's system.

These mechanics are for the mix of 5E and OSR that we play at my table.

Each weapon has double it's damage die in notches.

These notches are minor and major.

Minor notches cost 10% of the value of the weapon to fix per notch. So if you have a 1d6 sword valued at 100 silver pieces and it has 5 notches then you'll have to pay 50% of the value to fix it. Your sword still has 1 minor notch and 5 major notches that can be repaired. Major notches cost 100% weapon value to fix. If you get to the 6th major notch, your weapon is irreparably broken.

Under my new system, you can take a notch three ways:
1. Rolling a natural 1 on your attack roll.
2. Doing stupid shit with your weapon, like trying to chop down a tree with your long sword.
3. Taking a notch to use your weapons special ability.

The weapon special abilities are more like tags that you use actively. I wanted to differentiate the weapon types and add something to notches other than your sword breaking because you're rolling natural 1s. They're listed below and probably horribly unbalanced. I outright copied some of these from here, adapted others and might have made one or two up myself.

I forget who to credit, but I'm using someone else's called shots. Roll to attack twice, if they both hit then it happens, if one misses you miss, if two miss it happens to you. Probably Logan's.

Aim: Take two notches, give yourself advantage to hit. Ranged attacks only.

Attached: You can't be disarmed. This was the only passive. I considered taking a notch to automatically succeed an attempt to disarm, but that didn't feel right either.

Balanced: Take a notch to throw your weapon at it's max range without disadvantage. Thrown only.

Cranked: Take a notch to ignore the loading property of your crossbow. I'd apply this to bows as well if I could make it sound good.

Crushing: Take a notch to reduce an armored enemies AC by one until the start of your next turn.

High Draw: Take a notch to use strength to attack with your bow, as opposed to dexterity. Notches should cost more for this and the repair would require replacing the string as its under great strain from the heavy pull that would require a bow to use strength.

Hooked: Take a notch to attempt to disarm someone of their weapon, shield or to pull them off their horse. Make a contested strength check.

Impale: Attack as normal, but take a notch to impale your weapon into the enemy. The enemy takes your weapon damage as normal and then the next smallest damage die down when the weapon is pulled out. If the creature is large or large, you have advantage to checks made to climb onto the creature. Polearms only.

On a chain: Take a notch to ignore the enemies shield.

Parry, Shield: Take a notch to deflect a blow completely. Your shield has notches equal to the damage it can soak when sundered. Your Parry is a reaction.

Parry, Weapon: Take a notch to deflect a blow with your weapon. Roll your weapon's damage die and add it to your AC for this attack. Your Parry is a reaction. This needs a restriction, one handed, light. Something like that.

Parry and Riposte: As Parry, but make an attack as well. Attack does not add ability modifier to damage. This also needs a restriction. Parrying Dagger maybe.

Piercing: If you hit, you may take a notch and add the difference of your attack roll and the targets AC to your damage. Bows only, but maybe it's bolts/arrows only and not the bow itself.

Set in: Brace for a charge, take one notch - you may add one half of your weapon's damage die to your armor AC or make the attacker take that damage as he's gored on your spear. Polearms only.

Stagger: If you hit, you may take a notch to reduce the enemies speed by half and stop them from taking reactions until the start of your next turn.

That's all I've got for now.

Sunday, September 23, 2018

GLOG Class: Witch rough draft

Wizards trap themselves in musty tombs and windswept towers pouring over ancient tomes in search of lost knowledge.

Sorcerers force reality to bend to their whims through sheer force of will.

Warlocks make pacts with powerful entities in exchange for arcane prowess. 

Druids coexist with the natural magical forces all around them.

Clerics beseech a divinity for favor.

But Witches? Witches grab hold of handfuls of fire and try their best to throw it at their enemies before they're too badly burnt themselves. Witches, like Warlocks, use power the power of a high entity, but Witches lack the layer of safety that a proper Patron maintains between practitioner and power. Witches take power they didn't earn and can't control; they're bright flames that gutter out as quickly as they light.

Class: Witch

Starting equipment: Witch's cauldron/cookpot, a ritual weapon, a grimoire.

Roll your preferred dice combination to generate your Witches maximum age. 9d20 seemed to be giving reasonable numbers here

A: Unlimited Magic Dice/Spell Slots/Spell Points
B: Coven of Witches, Dark Ritual
C: Dark Bargain
D: Witch's Cauldron.

Unlimited MD/SS/SP¹

To be a Witch is to be a candle in the dark, burning alive to shed light to see by. Each time you cast a spell, you age 1d6 years per MD/SS/SP used. This number may be reduced by your Witch level, if GLOG, and by ½² Witch level if you're playing with 1-20 progression.

Coven of Witches²

You recruit a small following of the disenfranchised and downtrodden to function as your Coven. These Witches have Morale 9 in service of you, but Morale 6 if treated badly by you. They will typically be sad and broken individuals who will treat basic human kindness as stellar treatment and will be content with most anything provided you don't beat/degrade/etc them.

When casting a spell using MD/SS/SP greater or equal to the number of Witches helping with the casting, the age penalty may be spread around across all Witches involved.

Dark Ritual³

I haven't worked this one out, but I feel it's integral to the picture of Witches I have in my head. Naked women performing sacred/profane rights beneath the light of a full moon.

"Once per week, at night, you may lead your Witches in a ritualistic dance. You can do this every week but you probably shouldn't. Save it for times when you might really need extra power. You need an isolated area: a hilltop, a meadow, a basement, a ruined tower. Make up some mystical stuff about the full moon and the stars being right if it gets your Witches in a proper mood.

The ritual takes 1hr and must involve some boundary-pushing act for the Witches. You don't need to go into detail (please don't go into detail), but in general:
1. the first time the Witches do the ritual, just doing it will be enough.
2. the next time, doing it naked will be enough.
3. the next time, doing it naked and sacrificing a small animal will be enough.
This resets if all the Witches die.
If the ritual is interrupted by an outsider, it fails if the interloper lives past sunrise"

I was thinking maybe you have to do the Dark Ritual to take advantage of the Coven of Witches. I'm still spitballing.

Dark Bargain

The Witch may cast a spell without aging if she makes a dark bargain and the requestor will take the age penalty. The bargain must be genuine, not manufactured for the Witch's gain and the requestor must be a willing participant, not coerced or intimidated into a bargain.

Witches Cauldron⁵

The Witch can distill spells into potions. She may only use 1 MD/SS/SP on each potion and they have the minimum effect - [sum] and [dice] will always be 1 for a Witch potion. This doesn't age the Witch. The spell has to make sense as an effect that could be applied to a single target. You can have a potion of Flight, but not a potion of Dimension Door or Magic Missile. Or maybe you can, hijinks factor and all.


Design Thoughts

1. This is the main source of inspiration. The idea of infinite spell slots felt like it was something new to me and not just "this caster will use wisdom instead of intelligence." I'm coming from 5e, so it blew my mind. It's also definitely what I'd call a Con Caster for 5e, and those are my favorite. So thank you Dmiurgy.

2. Witches come in Covens, in my head. This is a little thrown together because I feel like it should be there, but don't really know how to execute it yet. Thank you Skerples.

3. Again, this just belongs here. It's quintessential Witch to me and Skerples' take on it is literally copy and pasted because it's 99% of the way to perfect.

4. I think this one is pretty much just me and what I think Witches should be. The cocky youths go seek out the wise old woman in the woods to procure a potion or a spell to solve all their problems, the Witch will give them what they asked for, but now what they wanted.

5. DMiurgy  again. "This means that witches prefer to cast small, slow, careful, cantrippy spells in their day-to-day lives, but if you piss them off royally they can unleash unholy cans of curse-ass that wizards simply can't rival. So that fits my idea of them being reclusive and prone to using herbalism and countercultural common sense to advise whatever small village they live in/near rather than spells, but at the same time nobody wants to get on a witches bad side, not even squads of trained warriors." Again, that's pretty much perfect 1:1 what I'm picturing in my head

Monday, April 2, 2018

40 Alternative Dragon Breaths

Inspired by these guys' alternate breath weapons

1.   Sleep
      1. Dreamless and restful, conferring the benefits of a long rest
      2. Prophetic, true
      3. Prophetic, false
      4. Nightmares
      5. Cursed; i.e. broken by true love's kiss
      6. Mundane, no benefit.
2.   Amnesia
      1. One fact about the world
      2. One fact about yourself
      3. One fact about your friends
      4. Roll twice and take both.
3.   Emotion
      1. Anger
      2. Fear
      3. Happiness
      4. Sadness
      5. Distrust
      6. Surprise
      7. Roll 1d10
4.   Secrets
5.   Rumors
6.   Harmless substance, weaponized
7.   Portal/Gate/Wormhole
8.   Anti-Magic
9.   Magic in its purest form
10. Molten metal
      1. Currency
      2. Not
11. Insects, rodents, or other low animals.
12. Not breath, but vomit OR filth or waste as breath.
13. Time
      1. Forward
      2. Backward
14. Silence
15. Suffocation
16. Bad luck
17. Undeserved renown or honor.
18. Darkness
19. Light
20. Music
21. Scent/Perfume
22. Pain
23. Loss of class level/skills
24. Sound
25. Quests, an unbreakable oath.
26. Memories
27. Lies
28. Belief in superstition(s)
29. Religious devotion
30. Phobias of mundane objects/creatures
31. Decay
32. Shrink
33. Nuisance
34. Undeath/Necromancy
35. Apathy
36. Arrogance
37. Mental illness
38. Family curse
39. Mild Radiation that will cause your children to be born with deformities
40. Roll twice and keep both.

I'd intended 100, but it was more difficult than I thought and I was trying to make sure each entry was distinct so I wasn't padding the list so I've got Mental illness instead of individual illnesses as individual entries. Some of my ideas were positive - a dragon that breathes knowledge or training isn't very scary, some of them just didn't feel gameable. Some of these probably aren't, and some of these are definitely more suited to fairy dragons or what have you.

Many of these can be rolled for again using the Amnesia template, such as secrets about yourself/the world/the party.

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Most stray cats are lost girls

Most stray cats are just lost little girls with too many problems to sort out on their own. A lost girl can't become a stray cat before she is old enough to think and talk. Some lost girls suffer from such a deluge of bullshit they find themselves turning into stray cats at an alarmingly young age, but most of the time these will be teenage girls.

The nature of being lost is hard to pin down, but it isn't literal. You can't blindfold a teenage girl and drop her off somewhere she's never been and watch her turn into a stray cat.

For a lost girl to become a stray cat, she must feel truly hopeless and sad, she must feel that she is alone in the world, that her problems are the size of mountains resting on her shoulders and there exists not a single person who cares enough about her to lighten her load - to become a stray cat, a girl must be unquestionably lost.

If she is not genuinely lost, someone will come along - usually a kindly old woman with plenty of stray cats of her own - and tell her that she is not so lost as she feels.

The old woman will take the girl into her home for a time. Sometimes the girl will leave the next morning after she has slept in a warm bed and eaten good food made with love and care. Sometimes the girl who thought she was lost will stay with the old woman until the time of her passing, helping to take care of her strays cats all the while. Undoubtably, some oft these stray cats will be just that, and not lost girls, but the difference is nearly impossible to spot.

The old woman will take care of her stray cats, caring and providing for them as best she is able, but the strays will never mistake her failings for a lack of care because even small sad portions of food and worn carpet in front of the hearth of a dilapidated shack are more sincere care than most of the stray cat lost girls have ever known.

After a time, maybe as quick as weeks and maybe as long as years, each stray cat will turn back into the person she was, having aged the length of time she was a cat. With renewed confidence in herself, she will leave the old woman and make her way back out into the world. Wherever she goes, she will always be a friend to stray cats, and may house some of her own lost girls when the time is right.

Friday, March 16, 2018

Cursed weapon that makes you poor

A weapon of any kind with some sort of bonus to hit or damage that simply can't be turned down by your PCs because of how great it is, but each time they hit, miss, or swing at all - depending on how severely you'd like to fuck them - it takes a notch.

If you're not familiar with Logan's notch system, basically your weapon can take as many notches as it has damage dice, so a D4 dagger takes four notches and so on, and then you test for breakage. I believe Logan is running with a quality system with some roll under and over quality bits, but I prefer weapons to take notches on natural ones as it's simpler than tacking on the quality system, and it lets you utilize some natural one punishment without the absurdity of some tables/systems critical fail results.

That's the gist of it. Your sword is cursed, it's the ultimate murderer, but eveytime you use it, it breaks a little more and costs you precious silver to repair it. Far too small item card example below.

I need to go back and add flavor to this stuff, but I don't think I'm confident enough for that yet, so you just get brass tacks for now.

 EDIT: 11/20/18

I've been playing with notches and weapon tags/special properties/whatever you want to call them and made this almost obsolete.

Currently, my weapons have double their damage die of notches. I make little item cards for the players and they've got little boxes they can check off - a set on the left and a set on the right.

If you get roll a natural 1, you take a notch. If you do stupid shit with your weapon like pry open a door, you take a notch.

Your first set of notches are 10% of your weapon value to fix. Your second set are 100% of your weapon value to fix. So on a 1d6 sword worth 100 SP, you can notch it 6 times and it'll cost you 60 SP to repair it. You can notch it an additional 5 times, but it'll cost you 100% for each of those notches. With this system, you can find yourself paying more than the sword costs to repair it, this is intentional. The 12th notch, you break your shit and it's irreparable.

The original weapon in this post is a more extreme version of all my weapons, but now wouldn't work at all under my new system. To fix it, I'd say you'd just have to adjust the price of repairing notches and then have it notch as normal, or possibly notch on natural 1s and 20s.