Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Potential Variation in Rolemaster

One of my favorite things in Rolemaster Express is the lack of Potential Stats.  Making an average Rolemaster Classic character takes around 45-60 minutes and probably 15 minutes of that is rolling up stats and potential stats, cross-referencing multiple tables as you go.  The Express version saves you nearly all of that 15 minutes.

With Rolemaster express assign a set group of  5 numbers to your primary and development stats.  This is quick and allows you to customize your character.

Adding more variety:

As a house rule, I'm going to allow my players to replace the standard set of 5 numbers:




This will give you the ability to get that 1 really great stat at the expense of two others if you wish and will give PC's more options.  I thought about allowing stat point trading, but I think that is almost too flexible and prone to min-maxing.  I will only allow players to swap out either their primary stats or their development stats with this method (not both).

Potential increases:

While I hated the mechanism of "potential" stats, I did like that you could increase your stats during the life of your character.  As another house rule, I'm going to allow players to mark or "star" 3 stats out of 10.  Each time they level their character, if they can roll higher than that stat, they can increase the stat score by 1 pt.  I will probably max this increase out by ~5 pts.  Maybe to allow for some variation I will allow increases of 1d3+4?  If they choose a stat this is really high, it will be hard to increase due to the small chance of rolling high enough.  I may allow PC's to spend a few development points in this case to increase their stats by only 1pt per level.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

The Armored Cleric Dilemma

One of the largest struggles I had to overcome to merge Rolemaster to a D&D based gameworld like forgotten realms is why can't Clerics wear metal armor.

After mulling it over for a while I came up with a solution that changes things in an interesting way for me.   Here it is:

It has been two decades since the great disaster, it is remembered as the Time of Troubles. The gods walked amongst men. Their war in the realms nearly destroyed all of Abeir-Toril. In the years after the gods returned to the heavens, the war continued. God slew god, and the demons and devils combined forces and destroyed the new god Cyric. It is rumored that these demons have gained the spark of deity and now walk Fearun as demigods! Rumors of devil worship abound in the far reaches of the realms, some say that demons have wrested control of the entirety of Mulhorand.

A decade ago the gods war ended abruptly, in what is remembered as the Spirit Gasp. Overnight, clerics found it much harder to channel the might of their gods. They were forced to trade metal armor for leathers, and the potency of their spells was far less. Many of the minor gods seemed to fade away overnight, perhaps departing for other realms. The days of the gods meddling in the afairs of men seems like it is over! Some in Faerun cried out, some rejoyced. All could agree that things had changed.

During this retraction of gods, the goddess of magic Mystra gave her life to preserve her weave forever. She bound her weave to the planet, establishing magic power as an essence, forever connected to all living things in Toril. However, without a guiding deity to control magic, areas of wild magic and magic dead zones drift spontaneously througout all of Toril. Wizards throughout the realms have begun meeting and discussing the future of magic at each of the yearly Mage Fairs. Without a god to control things, they have taken the responsibility of preservation of magic.

Now that the Time of Troubles is over, and the overt meddling of the gods a thing of the past (for now), the future of the realms will be decided by the free races. Now is the time for bold heroes to make names for themselves by deeds of sword, and spell!

By extending the Time of Troubles, I was able to: Kill off a bunch of gods that I've never liked away.  Minimize the power of all lesser and intermediate powers - to reduce the number of deities I have to come up with Rolemaster spell lists for.  Explain a larger presence of animists/druids in Faerun.  Explain why clerics have lesser powered spells (I also am removing the life mastery spell list - no Resurrections, period!) and can only cast spells easily if they aren't wearing armor.

What do you think?

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Quasi crystals

Gotta love it when Lovecraft is right.

I saw this article in wikipedia about quasicrystals and immediately thought about the Haunter in the Dark.

This is a icosahedral Ho-Mg-Zn crystal grown by chemists in a furnace which is a naturally occuring d12.

Rock on!