- Ability scores generation method? Grid method. Roll 3d6 six times for each ability score in six columns. You can choose one score per ability but once you do, you can no longer select any scores from that column. This usually creates heroic characters without too many super-high or super-low scores that satisfy the players and enable them to qualify for whatever class they want to play.
- How are death and dying handled? As per the rules. -1 to -9 is dying (unconscious and losing 1 hp per round). -10 is dead. Some campaigns I choose negative Constitution.
- What about raising the dead? As per the rules.
- How are replacement PCs handled? You meet them in town, on the road, or rescue them in the dungeon. Whatever is faster and more expedient.
- Initiative: individual, group, or something else? Depends on what is more expedient. Small skirmishes are usually individual. However, if the PCs are being attacked by 20 goblins, group initiative makes more sense.
- Are there critical hits and fumbles? How do they work? As per the rules for critical hits. Critical fumbles either result in the character losing a turn or the enemy getting a free attack/attack of opportunity depending on the situation. Ranged critical fumbles into melee combat result in friendly fire.
- Do I get any benefits for wearing a helmet? As per the variant rules (if any) for helmets. Otherwise, I assume they're part of the entire AC adjustment for any armor worn.
- Can I hurt my friends if I fire into melee or do something similarly silly? As per the rules. If they say so, yes. If they don't, then only on a critical fumble.
- Will we need to run from some encounters, or will we be able to kill everything? Use your best judgment. Sometimes discretion is the better part of valor. If you read my previous posts, yes, players have run from encounters.
- Level-draining monsters: yes or no? As per the rules--the monster can drain a level? Yes. If the rules say it's temporary, fine. If they say permanent, it's permanent.
- Are there going to be cases where a failed save results in PC death? Yep.
- How strictly are encumbrance & resources tracked? I try to make the PCs keep these things tracked. I keep up on them to make sure they're being honest.
- 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? You gain the level next time you sleep a full 8 hours. No, you do not automatically gain new spells unless you are a cleric/favored soul/etc. that would.
- What do I get experience for? Killing stuff. Good roleplaying. Clever ideas. Self-sacrifice. Teamwork and comraderie. Spending gold frivolously (1 XP per gp spent carousing/wenching/drinking/etc.).
- How are traps located? Description, dice rolling, or some combination? As per the rules. Perception/Spot checks. However, if you ask questions I'll give you clues. Keep asking and no rolls are needed. Same with secret/concealed doors, hidden compartments, etc.
- Are retainers encouraged and how does morale work? As per the rules of the system. Morale is based on "what would they do in real life?" Morale checks in 2nd edition were a pain to keep track of. If half your team drops in one round, you're going to probably try to escape.
- How do I identify magic items? Spells to identify them. Detect magic spells while using Spellcraft skill to try to get hints or clues. Testing them. Trying to figure out command words. Research and comparing them to items in old tomes. Knowledge (arcana) rolls to recognize what sort of item it is by its appearance, design, sigils/runes, markings, etc.
- Can I buy magic items? Oh, come on: how about just potions? As per the setting. Does the town have an alchemist? An apothecary? A powerful wizard? Do they have shops? Depends on when, where, and who.
- Can I create magic items? When and how? As per the rules. If we're playing 3.5 or Pathfinder, you need the feats. If we're playing 2nd edition or earlier, you follow those rules. Either way, I'm going to come up with ingredients and other stuff you need to make it and you have to find it. (Example: for a wand of lightning bolt you need the heartwood of a tree that had been struck by lighting and survived).
- What about splitting the party? If you don't mind sitting and waiting while I deal with the other half of the party, knock yourselves out. I wouldn't recommend it--it's more fun to not split up and stick together.
Monday, February 27, 2012
I got these from Dennis over at What a Horrible Night to Have a Curse.