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Messages - ian54

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Roll for Initiative Podcast / Re: What do you want to hear on the show?
« on: October 18, 2018, 11:56:20 AM »
I tracked down your theme song, it is called The End by Farhan Khan. It also appears as the backing track to a rap song called En Trois Temps by french rapper MOH, if you're interested in that sort of thing.

First Edition AD&D / There and back again
« on: August 05, 2018, 08:27:16 AM »
I wanted to share a small journey I undertook recently.

My original gaming background was almost exclusively AD&D 1e, I went through the emergence of the 1e supplementary books, the revisions in Dragon, all the way up to 2e and stopped shortly after that (not before amassing another huge collection of splat books).

Last year, primary driven by a D&D sale on PDFs, but also due to the occasional references in the OSR community, I got all the Original D&D books and supplements and decided to go through them all to see what gems they had. In the end I decided to accumulate them into a single document, first by copy/pasting the original three books, and then cutting out parts of each supplement and inserting or amending where necessary. I made some "changes of comfort" like combining the class experience and abilities tables, and reorganising monster stats into the more familiar format. All the while I was learning the rules and seeing the origins of the game unfold before my eyes.

My journey was nearly finished but so many things were missing from my compleat tome; monsters, classes, treasure. So to complement it I went though all seven issues of Strategic Review and the first ten issues of Dragon, taking out the additional rules, classes, monsters, treasure, and also articles such as the description of the inner and outer planes, and added them all into my ever growing compendium.

The final result of my labor, was ... a slightly rough version of Advanced Dungeons and Dragons (1e), it was all there. Without doubt the issue of the 1e books was really a composition and reworking of the original rules, and that was it. Not to play this down, as the rules for 1e were (IMO) close to perfection, but I really understood how they came to be and the huge amount of ideas that Gygax and company had churned out in those early years, it really made me appreciate it all the more.

Additionally, what struck me was just how "basic" the eventual Holmes Basic edition that succeeded it was and how much of a rewrite it had become, no wonder it emerged as a separate product stream, I had some idea that Original edition was going to be pre-basic, but I was truly amazed at how much detail was in those first rules.

As a postscript, I can thoroughly recommend any 1e aficionado to take a moment to explore the OD&D rules, it does actually explain a lot and how the 1e rules came to be.

Classic D&D / Re: OD&D Help needed to find missing stuff
« on: July 05, 2018, 03:39:53 PM »
Thanks for reply, I've actually got the Strategic Review and Dragon, so I can scan through those, I can see some of the "missing" monsters and some explainations of rules, but there is still the higher level xp that I cannot determine, this does not seem to have been addressed in the Greyhawk Supplement or beyond it.

Classic D&D / OD&D Help needed to find missing stuff
« on: July 02, 2018, 04:07:55 PM »
I've been on a bit of a journey starting with the OD&D books and then combining the supplements into them, trying to use as much of original text and possible and bring certain aspects up-to-date without ruining the original concept (for example combining all the monster statistics together like in later editions).

Some points and rules seem to be debatable and I was wondering if anyone could guide me to where I could find answers, perhaps editions of Strategic Review or Dragon?

* what is the xp progression for higher level Fighting-Men, Magic-Users and Clerics
* do Druids attack and save as Clerics?
* rules regarding spell memorising, there is an indication that the spells/level matrix applies daily, but no rules as to how the character regains spells or actually needs to specify which spells beforehand (as per later editions)
* the alignment tables don't cover all monsters
* some monsters are missing statistics altogether, e.g. Brain Mole

Roll for Initiative Podcast / Re: RFI Vol 8 issue 201
« on: June 29, 2018, 04:08:15 PM »
A triumphant return, love the idea of reviewing the cartoons, but sounds a bit like what Something Awful have done. Please bring back Blackstone's Vault and the old stuff!

Thanks. I am in the process of rebooting RFI and its coming back soon. The cast is slightly different.

Your show is missed. I've been busying myself with AP The Book of Sorrows, which I noticed you uploaded complete last year, what is the theme tune called?

Roll for Initiative Podcast / Re: Volume 7 mini issue 12
« on: October 26, 2017, 10:27:00 AM »
My anecdote is about a half-orc fighter who was a little bit fanatical with his deity, he-who-is-not-named, and unfortunately started naming him, actually forgetfulness on my part but the DM ran a "if you say it your character says it" rule, so consequently he got struck down with partial blindness in one eye.

Roll for Initiative Podcast / Re: Volume 7 issue 196 - Campaign Beginnings
« on: September 22, 2017, 12:49:35 PM »
Isn't Vince also "The Evil DM"? If so, why doesn't he allow evil player characters in games? Does he want all the evil to himself, like those guys who take all the cashews?

Classic D&D / Re: Monster Summoning
« on: September 21, 2017, 02:14:29 PM »
What I am trying to establish is what happened to the Monster Summoning spells, I managed to find them in Greyhawk supplement but they seem to have gone, only re-emerging in Advanced. Someone pointed me at the B/X Companion, but using think that was official

Really like the show, please do TFT, please?!

Classic D&D / Re: Monster Summoning
« on: September 18, 2017, 02:38:04 PM »
Sorry, that's Advanced, not Classic.

Roll for Initiative Podcast / Re: Volume 7 Mini Issue 10 – Too Much Gold?
« on: September 17, 2017, 12:12:10 PM »
I always assumed the gp=xp rule was to represent "mission accomplished", if the party killed the monsters and stole their loot then that's the bonus xp, it ties in with the treasure tables as to what that bonus was. Of course the loot needed to be secured, how it was spent was immaterial. Note that a bigger party, and paying off any retainers, or sharing loot with NPCs, all reduces the gp share and thus the xp bonus, as it should as the task was effectively easier, so it's actually a nice way to balance all the rewards and consider it a game mechanic rather than some "real world" rule.

Classic D&D / Monster Summoning
« on: September 17, 2017, 08:22:23 AM »
I was compiling an adventure and intended it to be based on B/X or BECMI, when I realised that the Monster Summoning spell, which I had intended the nemesis to use, was conspicuously absent from the spell lists, I checked B/X, Basic (BECMI) and the Rules Cyclopedia, and it is not there, a wiki told me it was in OD&D Greyhawk Supplement, but can anyone confirm where this spell is to be found? TIA

First, this podcast has become one of my favourites, keep up the good work.

Regarding experience, whilst four years game time seems long remember that jumps take a week and you’ll spend a week in system, so this represents only 100 or so jumps, easy in the scope of a campaign, I recall some published adventures covering 30+ weeks of travelling. It’ll go by really fast as most referees will just wave by the rather boring bit in jump.

Regarding rules for robots, these were first proposed in JTAS #2 in 1979, Book 8 was a final compilation, so it wasn’t that long to wait.

Regarding Steward, quite a valuable skill as it would be needed for carrying those in high passage in your ship, a far more lucrative trade than carting vegetables.

Glad that no-one mentioned computer size! Even though I have an explanation for that.

Finally, a last word on survival. This is like in Pass The Pigs where you have to make a risk on whether to carry on and gain skills, or die and start again. Taking an easier career is no better, you may have lots of skills, with the travel time applied to an older character you’ll soon be making aging rolls between adventures.

Traveller was an alternative at the time to level based game systems, you did it justice, thanks.

Can we have a Traveller sub-forum, please?

First Edition AD&D / Re: AD&D Unclassified
« on: August 30, 2017, 12:33:52 PM »
The approach I have tried to represent is flexibility.

2e just tried to address this by hundreds of prestige classes, but the class restrictions remained.

In the example of the thief retraining as a mage, the point I was trying to show is why they could not switch between the two and when appropriate, say, train to a competent thief level, do a bit of training as a mage to learn the Knock spell, then switch back to thievery.

All this could be done without the restrictions of the dual or multi-class rules, which I think were added on to the existing class rules that were inherited from original D&D, I have tried to maintain as much of the existing rules as possible, and accommodated the "specialist" classes as well, as it happens I wasn't eschewing the training aspects of DMG 86 either, this is purely creating an alternative to the class restrictions.

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