There has been a lot of hot discussion in the D&D 5th edition thread about game mechanics. One thing I have come to realize is that there are a lot of Table Top RPGs out there that I love, but none of them cater to exactly what I want.
So this thread is twofold. One is to talk about all the mechanics we love, the mechanics we hate and explain both. Secondly I think I’m going to try to start piecing together my own game using the OGL and I’ll periodically post updated releases once I make sure all my contents unique (I don’t want to steal!). I’m going to need help though, especially with balancing the math.
So let’s start with some of the various things I love from different systems.
Let’s start with Weapons. I love how “Legend” (See Link) does weapon creation. All weapons do base 1d6 damage per level, and then at creation you add 3 modifiers. For example my friend made a flame thrower. 1d6 base damage, then for his weapon traits he took “Magical Damage: Fire”, “Reach” and scythe. So you have a weapon that does magical fire damage 10ft out from a character than can also catch other adjacent enemies in the attack. Seems like a flamethrower to me, and it took all of a few minutes to come up with, and fits perfectly in the framework of the game.
Next up is 4th Edition Character/Encounter design. What I love in this system is that all the characters mechanically have the same actions during a turn. Everyone gets Standard actions, Movement Actions and bonus actions, and they are explicitly called out. Along with that everyone gets standard attacks, encounter attacks and daily attacks. I love this design because it makes playing any class real easy. You just have to focus on the unique things about that class and it’s flavor, and not on the underlying mechanics of the game itself. Now of course this design is not perfect, especially with character progression being so closely tied with magical items and random bonuses. I’m a big fan of “you’ve got this big awesome sword that has its own history etc…”. When you’re constantly changing out magic weapons so you can hit the bad guys you can lose that uniqueness. They addressed this in a great way with inherent bonuses though. Every level or two you gain +1 attack/damage. Pretty straight forward but I think that whole issue could be designed out in early design of a game now that it’s been identified as an issue.
Finally, in an attempt to keep this OP short, is I love how in 13th age you are big damn Heroes. I’ve come to have a beef with the rest mechanic in D&D games. The games want you to be these big heroes exploring these super dungeons, but the 5 minute work day and finding places to rest 8 hours in a dungeon, or leaving always felt weird, and the exact opposite of being a big damn hero. In comes 13th Age. Make it through 4 tough (or equivalent) combats? Congratulations, you’ve dug deep and found the will to keep going, to persevere. You regain all your abilities and HP and can continue to kick ass and take names.
So yea, let’s talk about the things we love, and the things we don’t like! Let’s keep it light and none of that "you’re playing it wrong” shit. I want to hear why you think something is great, backed up by reasons with the same rigor that’s applied to tearing apart a mechanic.Links!OGL FAQOGL TextPathfinder
. The D&D of OGL games. Plays like a more streamlined 3.5 with less trap feats and player punishment. At least browsing an optimization forum is recommended though, and god help your DM if you make it past level 11. 26 d6 rolled on successful sneak attacks. Mmmmmm.13th Age
, one of many of the new guard Table Top RPGs trying to bridge the gap between old school D&D and a lot of modern game design philosophy. Arguably one of the most popular of the new games too.Dungeon World
, a more rules light TTRPG with a focus role play and theatre of the mind. Enough rules and systems to sink your teeth into though. Want to pick up a system and have a great time from the word go? Here you are!Legend
by Rule of Cool. They are pretty much dead in the water but by god they were able to squeeze out a 1.0 version. Free to download from the website! I love their character creation and class design, as well as weapons. It is also dead simple to pull D&D 4th ed monsters over to this system with just a little tweaking.
Edited for spelling and Grammar