Friday, March 29, 2019

20 questions about OSRenstein

Somebody pointed out this post to me and suggested I should answer the list. Some of these have been covered already, but who cares? Let's go!

1) Ability scores generation method?
Roll 3d6 and record the sum result for each Ability in order: Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, Intelligence, Wisdom, and finally Charisma. If none of your rolls is 13 or higher, then raise your lowest roll to 13. You may swap two Ability scores. Notate your Ability score modifiers under STR, DEX, CON, INT, WIS, and CHA.
You have two derived stats: Luck and Load.
Your Luck score is 2 + your highest Ability score modifier.
Your Load is 5/10 + your STR modifier (ex: a +2 STR generates a Load of 7/12).
Players also choose a few things for their characters: race, background, class, and class kit. These are all from more extensive lists than I can reproduce here.

2) How are death and dying handled?
NPCs reduced to zero Hit Points are either dead or mortally wounded, GM's call. When a PC is reduced to zero Hit Points they fall unconscious and must make a Constitution saving throw or die. Similarly, if a PC suffers more than half their total Hit Points in a single blow they must make a Constitution saving throw or die.

3) What about raising the dead?
There are no Raise Dead or Resurrection spells.

4) How are replacement PCs handled?
When a character dies, the player can make a new character with half of the XP total of the previous character, round up.

5) Initiative: individual, group, or something else?
PCs act before NPCs. If two PCs are fighting each other, then the one with fewer Hit Points acts first - if they're tied then their actions are resolved simultaneously.
In combat scenarios with large groups of enemies or a major "boss" villain use a shuffled deck of cards. Each NPC combatant gets a single card draw, and each PC draws a number of cards equal to 1 plus their DEX modifier, minimum of 1 card. Once everyone has their cards, the GM counts down using the card values starting with Ace then King, Queen, Jack, 10, and so on. For tied cards, PC actions happen before NPC actions. Unless PCs are fighting each other, tied actions are simultaneous. Players still only act once, but high-DEX characters get more chances to act earlier in the round.

6) Are there critical hits and fumbles? How do they work?
Fumbles, no. Hits, Yes. When a player rolls a result 10 points higher than what they needed to hit with their Attack roll, and when a player rolls a 20 on their Attack roll - the only exception being that when a player needs to roll a 20 to hit, no Critical is possible.

7) Do I get any benefits for wearing a helmet?
Helmets are situational to some critical hit effects. Wearing a helmet by itself gives no bonus, but not wearing a helmet with heavy armor reduces your Armor by -1 (because you've given your opponent an exposed target to aim at).
EDIT: I changed this in my rules. Helmets give +1 Armor now, with the exception of heavy armors like Plate (described above) because those have helmets.

8) Can I hurt my friends if I fire into melee or do something similarly silly?
No fumbles, and as a GM I find this boring, as a player I find it frustrating. No.

9) Will we need to run from some encounters, or will we be able to kill everything?
Talking is always preferable to fighting, running is always better than fighting to the death, and some opponents shouldn't be engaged at all.

10) Level-draining monsters: yes or no?
Yes, but they drain Hit Dice, not levels.

11) Are there going to be cases where a failed save results in PC death?
Yes, definitely.

12) How strictly are encumbrance & resources tracked?
Players are responsible for tracking their gear and Load, but the GM can call for an audit. Anything not written down isn't there. Carrying too much has immediate consequences.

13) What’s required when my PC gains a level? Training? Do I get new spells automatically? Can it happen in the middle of an adventure, or do I have to wait for down time?
The PC has to have enough experience points to attain the next level and then conduct a Rest, no strenuous activity for 6 hours. No training costs, though learning to speak or read a language takes time. Learning wizard spells takes time, and the spells need to be "found." Leveling up can happen whenever the character can Rest.

14) What do I get experience for?
A successful encounter. The GM determines success but shouldn't obfuscate the conditions of success. An encounter that can't end in combat or hostility should be clearly stated as such. At the end of the session, the GM multiples the number of successful encounters by the number of players present and this is the base XP award. Every time during the session that the GM was impressed, entertained, or genuinely surprised by a PC action should also be tallied and added to this encounter calculation. A session with 4 players and 4 encounters where the GM was surprised or entertained 3 times would be worth 19 XP, or (4x4)+3.

15) How are traps located? Description, dice rolling, or some combination?
Any character can potentially find a trap. If a PC is actively looking for one this might require a description of how they're looking to automatically find one, but a Skill Check could be called for if the player or GM is more interested in moving things along. Activating a trap would require a Saving Throw.

16) Are retainers encouraged and how does morale work?
Yes, retainers are suggested and followers are given to every class once they reach 9th level. Morale and reaction both are 2d6 rolls, higher rolls are better than low.

17) How do I identify magic items?
Wizards can identify magic items at 1st level. They must spend 6 hours with the item without interruption, no spells or material components required. If you don't have a wizard in your group, you may need to hire one!

18) Can I buy magic items? Oh, come on: how about just potions?
Potions and scrolls might be the only magic items you could purchase since they do not require a great expenditure of power from their creators. Hedge wizards and sorcerous academies would sell these. More powerful magical items would likely not be sold unless the person didn't know what they had.

19) Can I create magic items? When and how?
Any wizard of 5th level or higher can make magic items. The more powerful the item, the more time and money is needed to create the item. At minimum, a wizard can make a 1st level scroll for 25sp after one day of work. Potions take weeks to make, and more powerful magic items take months.

20) What about splitting the party?
There are no rules for it, but if you're the player you can have your characters do whatever you want them to.

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