The Work Begins

I have started to put together the guidebook for Lost Worlds. I already find that it’s a good thing I documented so many of my thoughts here on this blog.  Still, when I see the gulf of empty space on the page, I’m a bit overwhelmed.

I’m thinking through a rough outline of the sections now, and how they should be presented.  Here’s my initial Table of Contents:

I. Game Overview
II. Ability Scores
III. Races
IV. Classes
V. Aspects
VI. Backgrounds
VII. Factions
VIII. Feats
IX. Equipment
X. Spells
XI. Exploration
XII. Combat
XIII. Magic Items
XIV. Prestige Classes

The most obvious gap I have right now is the lack of a core mechanic. My instinct is to stick with the d20, which gives a nice even distribution in 5% increments, which is about the sweet spot in terms of granularity. The downside is I lose a little bit of that gritty realism I was looking for in terms of having a bit of a bell curve built into the resolution system. 2d10 is still an option. As a reminder, I’ll compare the two:

Result 1d20 2d10

1

5%

0%

2

5%

1%

3

5%

2%

4

5%

3%

5

5%

4%

6

5%

5%

7

5%

6%

8

5%

7%

9

5%

8%

10

5%

9%

11

5%

10%

12

5%

9%

13

5%

8%

14

5%

7%

15

5%

6%

16

5%

5%

17

5%

4%

18

5%

3%

19

5%

2%

20

5%

1%

Downsides of 2d10: Can’t roll a 1, requires rolling two dice, requires an additional calculation on every roll, and has a very low chance of rolling a 2 or 20 for critical success or failure (could be extended to 19-20, and would still be less frequent than a 20 on a 1d20).

Upside of 2d10: Bell curve distribution (Technically, it’s not a bell curve yet, more like a “V” but still better than no curve at all.

I’m also still kicking around the idea of a 2d6 or 3d6 mechanic.  Most people are used to a 2d6 distribution (especially you settlers players). The downside of this would be an even more cramped distribution area.

I think custom dice are overkill at this point, cards are going to be a hassle to keep shuffled – although I might play around with it at some point. I think a bidding system is a very interesting board game mechanic, but too intense for a resolution mechanic (too much emphasis placed on the meta-resolution, not enough on what’s happening in the game).  I feel like stepped dice are a little gimmicky, and I want a consistent feel to the resolution mechanic.

So, I’m looking at three main choices: 1d20, 2d10, and 2d6/3d6. Any thoughts?

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7 thoughts on “The Work Begins

  1. Brian

    I would have to play test the 2d10 system to be able to really comment on it…I see the value mathematically, but there is more to it than that….

    Reply
  2. Andy

    I’m inclined to default to d20 because I still don’t see a specific benefit of changing, but I’d be willing to try 2d10 if you think it will help the rest of the system flow smoothly.

    Reply
    1. JackOfHearts Post author

      The main benefit is that the dice aren’t quite as swingy, and so much randomness in the final roll result (more than half is random with a d20 even at the higher levels).

      Reply
  3. Pingback: First Draft: Core Mechanic | Lost Worlds

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