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View Full Version : Generating Attributes (And There Was Much Weeping and Gnashing of Teeth)



Farcaster
06-06-2007, 05:43 PM
My players have always been a bit reticent (to put it mildly) about using the point buy system in D&D. In fact, I've resisted it myself in the past, which is interesting because the idea of rolling statistics seems to be an antiquated method of character generation in modern gaming. I didn't think about it twice when using the character points systems in WoD or GURPS. Why then, other than nestalgia, should D&D be any different?

Perhaps it is the idea of gambling with (and beating) the system that seems so attractive. If I'm lucky enough, with one set of rolls, I can pave the way to having an awesome character for the rest of the campaign -- perhaps even better than the other players? Does it boil down to a subtle form of status? There are the attribute-haves and have-nots? The idea of having a better character than everyone else is definitely prevalent in MMPOGs, and certainly isn't unheard of in table-top gaming either.

But, should I roll poorly and be forced to *gasp* roleplay a less than stellar character, a character with actual flaws, youíd think the world had come to an end. For low and beyond, there shall be much weeping and gnashing of teeth. Of course, how many of us don't imagine our character as being center-stage? How many actually want to play the comedic relief, bumbling his way along in the story even if such a character has the most opportunity to triumph?

Should a set of dice rolls made in a couple of minutes have such an enormous impact on a character I may well be playing for years to come? I certainly don't believe that a low-stat character is a loss, but should a random dice roll determine for me what my roleplaying opportunities are going to be? The more I think about it, the more I think that using the point buy system just makes much more sense. If I want to play a laggard who has to sweat to add two and two, then I can choose to build him that way instead of letting chance suck the creativity out of the process. And, if Iím a player who cannot abide by a single negative adjustment next to one of my attributes, then the point buy can satisfy me tooÖ Perhaps the only thing that just canít be satisfied using this system is the sometimes subtle urge to be envied.

What do you think? What system do you use in your games? The standard 4d6, keep the highest three? A point buy? Something else? Do tell. I'm interested.

starfalconkd
06-06-2007, 06:16 PM
I generally use 4d6 drop the lowest. I sometimes allowed players to roll two sets through this method and choose which set they like, but not often.

Ed Zachary
06-07-2007, 05:26 AM
I don't like the randomization method, because some people always seem to roll extremely well in character generation. That and the bell curve tends to lump most scores in the middle. The point buy-in system levels the playing field, but I prefer giving each players the following set of numbers to start with and to assign as they want:

18, 16, 14, 12, 10, 08

The "4d6 drop the lowest" method will give an average score of 12.2, the above set gives an average of 13.0 and is equal to a 38 point buy-in. The problem with buy-ins is that they make having higher ability scores very prohibitive, and too easy to remove low scores. I like the characters to have some high and some low scores. Adventurers should be the best of the best, but still have some flaws.

For example I recently joined a group with a 32 point buy-in. I gave the character five six-point boosts and a two point boost in Charisma. If you select a race with some good ability increases, you get a character with awesome scores and no real weaknesses.

Moritz
06-07-2007, 09:14 AM
4d6 drop the lowest. Assign them in any order and you're able to move 1 point from one attribute to another if you so wish. Further, if you do not like your results, you can re-roll the entire group.

I'm really nice.

ronpyatt
06-07-2007, 09:19 AM
I don't really care for the dice method. It seems cheap and easy to outbalance other characters in the party. I like idea of the point buy, but as Ed mentioned, characters are prevented from having those awesome scores that make a great hero. Random numbers do not usually produce a fair and balanced party. If I don't like the way my character is turning out, then I'll just keep rerolling another character until I'm satisfied.

I've played characters with the straight-up 3d6 method, the 4d6 drop 1, the point buy, and so far I hate them all. I end up not being able to get a particular feat or something else prohibited to the development of the character.

My method is restricted to what the GM requests if it's point buy, but if it's a dice roll that is required then I'll just pick my numbers without rolling. This set seems to be the best combination for keeping me and the GM happy: 18, 17, 16, 15, 14, 12. It's the Count Down method, and if I need to tweak it a little more then I'll allow myself to move one point over from one ability score to the other or even drop a point to make it look random. Since I like to play Half-orc sorcerers or psions, my numbers end up looking like 16, 15, 16, 15, 14, 14.

Skunkape
06-07-2007, 10:01 AM
I use point buy, but it's really my point buy system, not DnDs. I would rather give the players a lower number of points and just allow characteristic buys as a 1 point for 1 point version of the buy system. I know higher stats are supposed to be better, but I don't agree that you have to spend more points as you get your stats higher. That just increases the amount of complexity. Just have each increase cost 1 point per and give the players fewer points to purchase their stats.

I really do agree that dice rolling is a fairly bad thing as how lucky/unlucky someone is can either make or break the game for them. The set values for stats, like the expert array or standard array is also a good way to generate characters!

Moritz
06-07-2007, 10:08 AM
I liked the point buy system in NWN, but most of the RL players I know, hated it. Guess they wanted the chance to re-roll for 300 times to get that straight 18 set.

Ed Zachary
06-07-2007, 10:50 AM
I use point buy, but it's really my point buy system, not DnDs. I would rather give the players a lower number of points and just allow characteristic buys as a 1 point for 1 point version of the buy system. I know higher stats are supposed to be better, but I don't agree that you have to spend more points as you get your stats higher. That just increases the amount of complexity. Just have each increase cost 1 point per and give the players fewer points to purchase their stats.

I believe that the PCs should represent the best of the best, and have a few good stats. But I am also a stickler about giving them weaknesses, and having them build the character's personality on how they deal with that weakness.

That's why I stick them with one 08 score. Nobody is going to pick a race that gives a stat bonus, and put that bonus to turn the 08 into a 10.

My best character has an 06 for a strength, and I wouldn't have it any other way.


I really do agree that dice rolling is a fairly bad thing as how lucky/unlucky someone is can either make or break the game for them. The set values for stats, like the expert array or standard array is also a good way to generate characters!

Beware the player who wants to bring in his great character with stats pre-rolled at home.

Has anyone ever brought in a "great character" with mediocre or poor pre-rolled stats?

Has anyone ever seen an established character with less than average Hit Points?

Ed Zachary
06-07-2007, 11:00 AM
Speaking of players cheating with Hip Point rolls... As a DM, a player brought in a Thief character with HP so high, that even if he rolled all 6s on his d6 his score would've been lower. Just as I've established stats (18, 16, 14, 12, 10, 08) for abilities, I've also taken the dice rolling out of HP too.
d4=3
d6=4
d8=5
d10=6
d12=7

I like the randomization that dice rolling gives during game play, but not for the permanent attributes that stay with a character. It's too easy to fudge, and nobody ever rolls below average.

You (anyone) don't have to comment on this, but look at the HP of your main characters. Do any of them have below average dice rolls?

Moritz
06-07-2007, 11:02 AM
I allow them max hit points up to level 5, then they have to roll.

Ed Zachary
06-07-2007, 11:13 AM
I allow them max hit points up to level 5, then they have to roll.

A friend of mine had a dwarf fighter (Sir Beerslayer), and he had an 18 Con. I personally saw him roll his first two 10s for HP. After that we all watched him on further HP rolls. Not because we thought he was cheating, but out of interest. He rolled 10s at 3rd and 4th levels too, but no more afterward.

We had another player, let's call him "Sleaze" (I wasn't the DM). He always rolled his d20s into a wall he made with his cupped hand. And yes, he always made all his saves, and always hit when he had to. Later on we made a rule... "no sleaze rolling allowed". all dice had to be thrown into the middle of the table. Most of the time nobody checked, but it was a good move to keep things fair.

starfalconkd
06-07-2007, 01:54 PM
I like to let my pcs have high hps. I generally allow someone the option to reroll the die, but they are stuck with the second result. I'd rather my pcs have above average hp.

Ed Zachary
06-07-2007, 06:45 PM
As a shameless self-promo, check out the game thread that was just started in the Play by Post folder (http://www.penandpapergames.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=69).

Skunkape
06-08-2007, 06:30 AM
I had a Traveler character that had almost max stats, and I rolled the dice right infront of the GM. He wasn't very happy about the results, but I've also had players who cheated on dice rolls. I'm not talking the occasional fudge, I'm talking making all of the required rolls all of the time.

I trust everyone in my current group, they've been honest so far and we've been playing together constantly for the past 3+ years.

As far as HPs are concerned, I let the PCs roll their hits if they want to. I track characters using DM Genie, and one of the PCs always had me let the program roll his hit points instead of rolling them himself. For the most part, the PCs usually had average rolls for hits.

One of the games I'm playing in, the GM had us roll 3 characters using the 4d6 drop the lowest and take the one we liked best. Although I haven't looked at everyone's characters, from what I've gathered through watching, we all have one maybe two high stats, 16 -18, two to three average stats and two lower stats, a few of us having 8s. So I don't think anyone cheated when generating their characters.

The way the GM has us roll stats is you roll the die, if you don't like the result, you can let the GM roll for you, but you take whatever he rolls. I had gotten a little below average hits on my character, we're just hit 6th level, and let the GM re-roll two of my rolls, his rolls were higher than mine, so my hits went up. I've also seen with other players lower rolls from the GM, even a 2 on a d10 getting replaced by a 1, but for the most part, our characters are just a little above average.

NikoONeil
06-09-2007, 01:21 PM
Most of the games I have ran have been newbie ones. As such, I wanted the characters to be powerful so they could be sure and survive. I let them roll 6d6 add 12 to each and that is their stats. As for the method I like the best it is a modified point buy. I give them a total of +8 on their modifiers before racial adjustments. This seems to work well and generally gives ballanced but diverse characters.

Ed Zachary
06-09-2007, 01:37 PM
So if I rolled a 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 & 6... that means I had 13, 14, 15, 16, 17 & 18 for ability scores.

Could I then take that +8 and make my 18 a 26?

NikoONeil
06-11-2007, 08:28 PM
Ha Ha. No, I use one or the other. You dont get the benifit of both, also max stat of 18 pre racial adjustment, kinda a given but wanted to clarify.

gurusloth
06-14-2007, 01:12 AM
I've had some complaints from people about the fact that the 4d6 method is biased towards being average, so I like to use a single die with a modifier for each stat, like 1d12+6 or 1d10+8. Also, I only allow re-rolls if the total bonus for all six stats is under +6, and then you have to abandon everything and re-roll all six stats again.

Moritz
06-14-2007, 08:13 AM
Dang thing won't save spaces, so it's just a bumbling of numbers

4d6, drop lowest

4d6, drop lowest
This table details the odds of rolling each of the possibilities when rolling up a character.

Roll Chance Total chance naturally rolling of this modifier
3 (-4) 1 in 1296 0.08%
4 (-3) 1 in 324 0.31% 1 in 324 (1.08%)
5 (-3) 1 in 129 0.77%
6 (-2) 1 in 61 1.62% 1 in 61 (4.55%)
7 (-2) 1 in 34 2.93%
8 (-1) 1 in 20 4.78% 1 in 20 (11.81%)
9 (-1) 1 in 14 7.02%
10 (0) 1 in 10 9.41% 1 in 10 (20.83%)
11 (0) 1 in 8 11.42%
12 (+1) 1 in 7 12.89% 1 in 7 (26.16%)
13 (+1) 1 in 7 13.27%
14 (+2) 1 in 8 12.35% 1 in 8 (22.45%)
15 (+2) 1 in 9 10.11%
16 (+3) 1 in 13 7.25% 1 in 13 (11.42%)
17 (+3) 1 in 24 4.17%
18 (+4) 1 in 61 1.62% 1 in 61 (1.62%)

Grimwell
06-16-2007, 03:03 PM
Question, why is an 18 more likely than a 3? In both cases, each dice has to have the exact same number unlike every other result where the dice can be more independent. I'm not saying your math is bad, but I'm not making the logic jump on my own...

Jakebow
06-16-2007, 04:42 PM
we use 5d6 and reroll 1. you need good score to surive in are world.

Moritz
06-16-2007, 05:02 PM
Question, why is an 18 more likely than a 3? In both cases, each dice has to have the exact same number unlike every other result where the dice can be more independent. I'm not saying your math is bad, but I'm not making the logic jump on my own...

No idea, got that a while back from some statistics page. Added it to my house rules to show the benefit for the players so they'd quit whining about this or that all the time.

Ed Zachary
06-16-2007, 05:10 PM
Question, why is an 18 more likely than a 3?

Because when four dice are rolled, players are more likely to drop a 1 than a 6?

Grimwell
06-18-2007, 11:04 PM
You know what, that's probably it. I was thinking 3d6 instead of 4d6. To get a 3 you have to roll 1, 1, 1, 1. To get an 18 you can roll 6, 6, 6, X.

Makes a lot of sense.

TheOtherMonica
06-24-2007, 03:32 AM
4d6, drop the lowest if what I prefer. A certain amount of randomness is good, and you can end up with strengths and weaknesses that aren't typical for the archetype. I have a special set of blue d6s that roll well for character creation and really poorly for everything else.

I had one DM that wanted everyone to have at least one score below 10 to represent a weakness and another above 14 for a special strength. A different DM that wanted bonuses of at least +6 when added together, preferably more, for his swashbuckling Monty-Haul Merchant adventuring campaign with a party of three multi-classed rogues... and a bard. Yet another DM was a let the dice fall as they may sort, but with one automatic 18. The dice were kind for that character, I rolled 10, 18, 16, 18, 17, 18. :eek: I asked if he wanted me to re-roll for something more balanced. He asked if I wanted to turn the 10 into the auto-18. I said no, that array was fine. :cool:

Overall, I think the needs of the campaign and the group dictate how you generate characters. If everyone wants the characters to be as equal as possible, then you use point buy, or give everyone the same set of scores to place where they want. If the players can deal with differing scores, than the dice add variety.

starfalconkd
06-24-2007, 09:12 AM
Now that you mention extraordinary rolls, the best I ever rolled was 17, 17, 16, 16, 16, 13, not in that order. That was using 4d6 drop the lowest. I also once got an exceptional set of stats because I was lucky. I played a fighter, not my usual class, and had rolled decent stats including one 18. This was my first fighter so I put the 18 in strength. This was back in 2nd edition so i rolled my percentiles in front of the dm and rolled 00. My dm was horror struck and I was ecstatic. He offered me an overall better set of stats which I don't remember right now in exchange for me giving up the 18/00. I put a 17 in strength. Later in the game he gave me a book (because I a good sport about giving my huge strength) to raise strength by one and I ended up with 18/60-something.

Ed Zachary
06-24-2007, 09:52 AM
I like randomization, but I think it's more important to start each character on equal footing. For permanent numbers that stay with a character forever like ability scores and hit points, I like to keep things the same for everyone.

[18, 16, 14, 12, 10, 08]

blue_jean13
06-24-2007, 10:28 AM
so i pretty much dont understand the point buy gamestyle. ive played icewindale and baldurs gate where they buy points but thats fairly easy on the game. so if any one can explain it to me.

Ed Zachary
06-24-2007, 10:37 AM
so i pretty much dont understand the point buy gamestyle. ive played cewindale and baldurs gate where they buy points but thats fairly easy on the game. so if any one can explain it to me.

1) Start with six 08s.

2) Buy points at a one for one rate to a max of 14.

3) Then buy points at a two for one rate to a max of 16.

4) Then buy points at a three for one rate to a max of 18, and so on.

Nerve Gas
06-29-2007, 10:09 PM
I feel it has to do with the game and the DM more than being fair. For example, when I DM I make it tough, but I watch what is happening and adjust the encounters to always give the characters a chance. I am not saying I let them win, but if they are smart, they will survive. So sometimes I use a straight 3d6 assigned in the order they are rolled. That also makes for some great comedy. Had a guy play a wizard with a 18 Str, 6 Dex, 13 Con, 15 Int, 5 Wis, and 6 Cha. If role-played well, this guy is a walking brick of smarts, but boy do people think he is crazy and ugly.
Getting ugly numbers and figuring out what kind of character to make with them also gets people out of thier comfort zone. It sometimes gets old rolling characters with the guy who is going to be a dwarf paladin. Why? Because he is always a dwarf paladin. If someone always plays casters and gets a 6 int, 6 wis, and 6 cha, they is going to have to play something else. But those people usually are the ones who end up having the most fun.
With hitpoints though I always take a different tact. Max all the time. I feel that low hp is the worst thing that can happen. I played in a game one time where we rolled for hp. I was a fighter. I had a decent con, but my hp rolls were horrible. These were my results up to fifth level.
I had a 15 con = +2 hp so 10 pts there.
Rolled a 2,3,1,3,1. So my fifth level fighter had 20 hp out of a possibly 60. The wizard in our group was lucky. He had a 12 con = +1 so 5 pts there. Then he rolled 4,4,3,4,4 for a total of 24 hp out of 25.
It is always nice to see the big tank wizard protecting the wimpy fighter. I think that allowing the max really seperates the character classes.

smashthedean
07-01-2007, 11:35 AM
I'm partial to a high power point-buy (usually 32 or 36) as then the player is in control of how he wants to build his character and doesn't get screwed over by a bad roll. Also it helps to balance the party as everyone will have approximately the same quality of ability scores. When I do occasionally generate with dice, such as when teaching the game to new players, I usually do 4d6 seven times, reroll ones and drop the lowest.

Ed Zachary
07-01-2007, 12:07 PM
It is always nice to see the big tank wizard protecting the wimpy fighter. I think that allowing the max really seperates the character classes.

That might be interesting for one game, but are your players going to want to build a long term campaign around that?

I doubt that it would have my interest for the second game.

TheOtherMonica
07-02-2007, 02:53 AM
sarcasm, I'm pretty sure.

Nothing to see here folks, move along.:D

Zorastor
07-08-2007, 07:52 PM
Ok..some are going to say " man your building gods" but this is what I let my players do.
roll 4d6 re-roll 1s and drop the lowest, repeat 4 times for 4 sets and pick the best then assign as you like..

hahaha....gods

Farcaster
07-09-2007, 05:39 PM
Well, not quite gods, but it definitely sounds like it would generate lopsided characters. And, when you get down to it, how fun is it really to play a two-dimensional, paper-thin character with all heroic features and no flaws? Nonetheless, this seems to be exactly what many players want to do.

Ed Zachary
07-09-2007, 05:48 PM
Ok..some are going to say " man your building gods" but this is what I let my players do.
roll 4d6 re-roll 1s and drop the lowest, repeat 4 times for 4 sets and pick the best then assign as you like...

I tried that, I rolled a 14, 17, 16, 18, 13, 12. That's equal to a 54 point buy-in.

Skunkape
07-19-2007, 07:24 AM
I think main thing to remember here is, are you and your players having fun with the game? I know we're just discussing ways of generating characters here and there is no right/wrong way to do it, there's only opinions on which is your best way.

As long as you're players are happy with the way their characters are created and you're happy with running them through your missions and how easy/difficult it is for them, does it really matter about how their characters are created?

Just use whatever system you and your players like best.:D

TheYeti1775
07-19-2007, 12:03 PM
Done all the above, including a few others.

Point buy + random is one.

DM wanted a very high powered game.
36 points + 3d6 rolled in front of him.
You can get all sorts of combinations like that.

Farcaster
07-19-2007, 12:48 PM
Just use whatever system you and your players like best.:D

Therein lies the rub though, doesn't it? It isn't always easy finding a system that both the GM and the players are going to agree on. I recently started running the "Expeditions to Undermountain" module (the first module I've tried running in a long time) and I decided to try the point buy system, and trust me when I say the expression "weeping and gnashing of teeth" didn't quite cover it. Of course, that was partly my fault because I had them roll at first and then later changed to the point buy (before the game started, of course.) -- I know, bad DM, bad.

Moritz
07-19-2007, 01:39 PM
You mean the players have to agree on the system - you say that like they get a vote? Either they agree, or they just don't play :)

Inquisitor Tremayne
07-19-2007, 01:42 PM
For the games I GM I have the players roll 4d6 and drop the lowest one. If none of their scores are over 13 then they may reroll a new set. But they must do this at the table with me watching. Otherwise they must use a 30 point buy.

I found with our D&D group (in which I am a player) our attributes are all over the place and we are as average as you can possibly be. I think only one character has an 18 stat. And everyone rolled their stats.

I am very much against attributes that provide negatives, especially in D&D when your class is only giving you 2 + Int modifier in skill points. Which if you have a -1 you only get one skill point every level! Your character can't do a thing at higher levels.

I'm also all for ROLEplaying your character including the flaws. And lets face it, an attribute of 12 in D&D, especially higher levels, can be considered a flaw. A measly +1 to whatever your weakest save is and can be done for.

Now I am just ranting and I lost my point. I prefer 30 point buy. I agree that rolling scores is archaic.

Literalmn
07-20-2007, 10:29 AM
I am currently planning a campaign that I've already subtitled Deadly D&D. Because of this I want the PC to have a chance, and to do so I want them to be exceptional (the best of the best) but not godly. So I'm going to let them work it as follows: roll 12d6 use the best three, for two ability scores; 8d6 use the best three, for two more ability scores; and then 4d6 use the best three, for the final two scores; no re-rolling ones for any stage. Then assign these six as desired.

I think that this will give good scores: an eighteen (or three), but there will still be two scores that may not be be all that good.

I think this would probably not work in a 'standard' campaign. I'm only planning on allowing this for the campaign I'm starting soon, because of it's less than forgiving (bleak, deadly, evil) nature.

Moritz
07-20-2007, 10:34 AM
I rolled all 6's again! Oh my god, I'm so lucky!

Nah, but really, I did manage to pull this off my first time around with the rolling method described by Literalmn

18, 18, 18, 17, 17, 16

Ed Zachary
07-20-2007, 10:42 AM
When you roll for ability scores (and hit points), you take a chance on whether you're born a Rockefeller, a poor slob in Bangladesh, or somewhere in between. These rolls stay with the character forever, and can make or break a character. It sucks for the player who rolled the worst scores in the group. That's why I like to keep these permanent scores even and not random, then let the random events that occur during gaming to be influenced by the dice. All players should get the same starting shot. What they do with the character afterward is their choice and up to fate.

And I agree with Literalmn, the characters should have good scores, but not as good as Moritz' scores.


I am currently planning a campaign that I've already subtitled Deadly D&D.

We called our evil AD&D game "Advanced Deceit and Deception", or "Always Death and Destruction".

Moritz
07-20-2007, 10:59 AM
I'm always keen on letting the player re-roll the set of 4d6 - drop the lowest, over and over until they get the rolls they desire. But it has to be in a set of 6. It cannot be just reroll individual characteristics until they get it. This prevents the 'poor slob in Bangladesh' and gives them a fighting chance at living.

But I've got to be there to watch, cause "Oh my god, I rolled another 20!"

Moritz
07-20-2007, 11:04 AM
We called our evil AD&D game "Advanced Deceit and Deception", or "Always Death and Destruction".

AD&D "Attention Deficit Disorder" - "Hey look, a bunny." - and while the DM is looking away, "OH MY GOD, I ROLLED ANOTHER 20!"

Literalmn
07-20-2007, 11:40 AM
Usually, the 4d6 rolls end up being in the 14-8 range. I'm going to do some more research before the campaign starts (excel spreadsheet) and see what typical scores look like. If I get what Moritz got a lot a may try going with a 9-6-3 d6 progression instead.

That said, those scores would help you survive and make you a tough character. However, in the campaign I'm planning that set of scores wouldn't guarantee a walk in park. Balors, Pitfiends, and Dragons; oh my!


I rolled all 6's again! Oh my god, I'm so lucky!

Nah, but really, I did manage to pull this off my first time around with the rolling method described by Literalmn

18, 18, 18, 17, 17, 16

Inquisitor Tremayne
07-20-2007, 11:44 AM
This is about rolling hit points. I think its actually pretty decent.

It was posted over on WoTCs Star Wars boards.


Hmm. This reminds me...

Instead of rolling the actual die for HD, I use a system where it's not possible for players to roll anywhere below the halfway point.
D4s: 1d3+1 (2-4)
D6s: 1d4+2 (3-6)
D8s: 1d4+4 (5-8)
D10s: 1d6+4 (5-10)
Makes things easier on me, as far as fairness goes. Frankly, I don't understand why a system like this isn't by default. (Rolling 1s for HPs is, frankly, a load of B.S.. Players shouldn't have to deal with random crap like that.)

Sorry for getting off topic.

Literalmn
07-20-2007, 11:54 AM
But on another note: What do y'all think of a spell system that allows for a spell pool rather than a number of specific spells of a given level:

The total power of the pool is equal to the casters total number of spells per day X spell levels. For example: A caster w/4 first level, 3 second level, 2 third level, and one fourth level spell available per day has a total power pool of (4x1)+(3x2)+(2x3)+(1x4)=20. Thus, the caster could choose 5 fourth level spells, or 20 first level spells or 5 second level spells a fourth level spell and one first level spell. 0 level spells would be handled differently (haven't figured it out yet).

So beside the logistical challenge; does anybody see any other major pitfalls with this system. The system would be for both PCs and NPCs/Monsters.

Ed Zachary
07-20-2007, 12:20 PM
A player that thinks and plans will usually have the right spells for the circumstance.

Sure, that would be great for wizards. It would be like allowing fighters to change their feats as they they see fit at the time.

Farcaster
07-20-2007, 12:52 PM
This is about rolling hit points. I think its actually pretty decent.

I've participated in a few discussions out on the WotC forums about hit points too. In my games, I keep track of all hitpoints. My players don't even know what their hit points are, and honestly, this has precluded a lot of hitpoint-anxiety. All they really know is that the Mystic Theurge is soft and squishy, the rogue is a feather weight (if he gets hit), the Paladin's a pretty tough bastard, and the Dwarven Warrior can take an inconceivable amount of punishment. All of that tracks with their expectations, so if they're on the lower end of the averages or the higher end, it doesn't make much difference. But, do I throw out less than average rolls or even 1s? No.

shilar
07-20-2007, 03:27 PM
I don't usually have a problem with low scores. I just find ways to stack the odds in my favor in other ways. High skill point classes or ones with a lot of bonus feats can basically work around any stat problem with the right build by mid-levels. Not to mention just using good tactics like flanking, cover, surprise rounds, bluffs, and so on. A small bonus or penalty can be easily made up for. And there are always magic items to make up for more difficult shortcomings.

blue_jean13
07-21-2007, 02:40 AM
Ok throughout this whole Thread no one has adressed that stats are stats just stats they give no "flavor" to the character. I dont care if i role all 12 and just have the average joe adventering with a party of gods my character would do the best with what he had and would strive to be better. this dosnt mean others forms of D&D are bad i just dont like when my some people in my party start debating who has the better character and the decideing factor being stats. i beileve i could play a character fairly well with 12's across the board. just give um a good personality and the DM will keep that character alive

Ed Zachary
07-21-2007, 04:22 AM
Ok throughout this whole Thread no one has adressed that stats are stats just stats they give no "flavor" to the character. I dont care if i role all 12 and just have the average joe adventering with a party of gods my character would do the best with what he had and would strive to be better.

Ability scores affect the survivability of the character. A wide range of scores (good and bad) allows the player to play to his characters strengths and compensate for weaknesses. All 12 would be... boring.

Literalmn
07-21-2007, 10:00 AM
Well, spells still have be pre-memorized. This plan is not to make every caster a spontaneous caster (a' la the sorcerer). This allows wizards (or clerics) to load up on spells they think they might need. If a mid-level wizard thinks he's going to need a boat-load of lightning or magic missles he can load up on those spells.

Like most situations in life that provide freedom: there is extra responsibility. Without per level limits on spells if a mid-level caster forgets to memorize mage armor, for example, while loading up on offense; that's just so sad and too bad: "The kobold's blade stings and burns as it sinks into your soft midriff."


A player that thinks and plans will usually have the right spells for the circumstance.

Sure, that would be great for wizards. It would be like allowing fighters to change their feats as they they see fit at the time.

Moritz
07-21-2007, 01:41 PM
Is this an Unearthed Arcanum / DDO concept? Where you have mana points or spell points to pull from and spend on certain spells?

Argent
07-22-2007, 12:45 PM
Since time out of mind (or 1980, whichever) I've used 4d6 drop the lowest. And I keep using it just because it is what I have always used. And in the beginning, yes, rolling big stats was pretty awesome. But as I've "grown" as a role-player :) the stats stopped being so important, which is a big factor in why I never switched my method. After all, smart/strong people make bad choices all the time; that way lies fun.

I do play Living Greyhawk, however, which does use a point system. As does the Xendrik for Eberron. So I'm not opposed, but if I have a chance to roll...

Karui_Kage
07-23-2007, 04:43 PM
I use Sphyre's Pointbuy System, available for viewing here: http://dmkaruikage.proboards78.com/index.cgi?board=general&action=display&thread=1184603857

I used to do Point Buy, but liked rolling, and so did the players. I set off to find something that combined both, and found this. We tried it, use it, and love it. It takes away the randomness of pure rolling, at least to the point of one player having all +3s/+4s and another having all +1s, and allows every player to easily have at least one stat with a +3/+4. With Contingency Points, ranks, and the option of Hardcore/Softcore, it is a variant I plan to use for many years to come.

Inquisitor Tremayne
07-26-2007, 10:44 AM
I use Sphyre's Pointbuy System, available for viewing here: http://dmkaruikage.proboards78.com/index.cgi?board=general&action=display&thread=1184603857

I used to do Point Buy, but liked rolling, and so did the players. I set off to find something that combined both, and found this. We tried it, use it, and love it. It takes away the randomness of pure rolling, at least to the point of one player having all +3s/+4s and another having all +1s, and allows every player to easily have at least one stat with a +3/+4. With Contingency Points, ranks, and the option of Hardcore/Softcore, it is a variant I plan to use for many years to come.

I checked out that link and almost went blind! That blue screen and white text!

Anyway, it looks good. I think my players will say its too complicated. They are already against a point buy system so we will see.

I was thinking about doing a 28 or 30 point buy and after scores are assigned and racial mods factored in you get to roll a d4 and the result is a number of points you can add to any score.

So, lets say you get:

Str 15
Dex 14
Con 13
Int 12
Wis 12
Cha 10

Then roll a d4 and say you get a 3. You can then spread those 3 points out amongst your scores or add them all into one score.

So its planned and customized generation and still a bit random.

What do you think?

Karui_Kage
07-26-2007, 10:51 AM
I wouldn't see that as far from point buy. Being able to add 1-4 to your skills is a little random, but it isn't that much.

Sorry about the text. I thought it was easy on the eyes, personally. Doesn't seem much different than the default headers for this forum, which is also white text on a blue background.

If you check out the link to the original thread on Sphyre's point buy, he makes a good point that it really isn't any more complicated than point buy or rolling. Sure, it's different, but no more complex. You buy Ranks, roll all your stats, then use leftover points to boost up a stat or two. Tried it with my players, and none of them had problems. :) The nice benefit is that players who dislike point buy should love it. While it is more controlled than pure 4d6 drop the lowest, it's still mostly random. The player's results should be a bit more even, and everyone is almost guaranteed one good score with a Rank A.

If you are going to go with your 28-30 point buy and a d4, I might just recommend giving them 32-34 points instead. It seems like it would give about the same results, rolling an extra d4 is pretty minor, in my opinion.

InfoStorm
07-26-2007, 10:53 AM
Of the primary topic, I must admit that we have been using the point buy method for character creation since 3.0 came out. I consider it a balances way to make characters for all players, and allows players to design characters as they see fit. We've been using a 32 point, point buy for as long for Primary PC's, while cohorts are designed off of 28 points, and generic population are designed off of 24 points.

For Hit points, we generally go with dice rolls after a couple levels, but have a little but of fudge at first. As usual, full hp for 1st level. At 2nd level, they players roll 4 dice and take the best one, at 3rd, 3 dice and take the best one, and 4th roll 2 dice and take the best. After that they get what they roll, except for 1's being re-rolled. This gives PC's a better chance at surviving those fragile first few levels, but after that it's up to their witts.

Inquisitor Tremayne
07-26-2007, 11:04 AM
I wouldn't see that as far from point buy. Being able to add 1-4 to your skills is a little random, but it isn't that much.

Sorry about the text. I thought it was easy on the eyes, personally. Doesn't seem much different than the default headers for this forum, which is also white text on a blue background.

If you check out the link to the original thread on Sphyre's point buy, he makes a good point that it really isn't any more complicated than point buy or rolling. Sure, it's different, but no more complex. You buy Ranks, roll all your stats, then use leftover points to boost up a stat or two. Tried it with my players, and none of them had problems. :) The nice benefit is that players who dislike point buy should love it. While it is more controlled than pure 4d6 drop the lowest, it's still mostly random. The player's results should be a bit more even, and everyone is almost guaranteed one good score with a Rank A.

If you are going to go with your 28-30 point buy and a d4, I might just recommend giving them 32-34 points instead. It seems like it would give about the same results, rolling an extra d4 is pretty minor, in my opinion.

I never said I thought it was complicated. I know my players will be against it claiming that its too complicated at first glance.

As far as the point-buy and adding a d4, the big difference is that you add those d4 points AFTER you assign your scores and factor in racial mods. You can't do that with normal full point buy. You may or may not get the same results, I don't know, I haven't tried it out yet.

Karui_Kage
07-26-2007, 11:11 AM
If you're going that way, I would recommend a clause to say a character can't boost their score higher than 20 with it. Most of the rolling rules out there try to prevent a starting score of 18, for good reason. Other than that, yeah, go try it out. :) Do ask what your players think of Sphyre's. You'd be surprised, maybe they won't find it as complicated as you think they will.

Inquisitor Tremayne
07-26-2007, 11:12 AM
Anyone have their books handy?

What would the following arrays give you for point buys:

14, 14, 8, 12, 13, 10

15, 14, 13, 12, 12, 10

16, 15, 14, 13, 12, 10

15, 14, 14, 12, 10, 8

Thanks

InfoStorm
07-26-2007, 11:25 AM
Anyone have their books handy?

What would the following arrays give you for point buys:

14, 14, 8, 12, 13, 10

15, 14, 13, 12, 12, 10

16, 15, 14, 13, 12, 10

15, 14, 14, 12, 10, 8

Thanks

Books, don't need no skinking books:

1 = 6+6+0+4+5+2 = 25

2 = 8+6+5+4+4+2 = 29

3 = 10+8+6+5+4+2 = 35

4 = 8+6+6+4+2+0 = 26

Inquisitor Tremayne
07-26-2007, 11:39 AM
Books, don't need no skinking books:

1 = 6+6+0+4+5+2 = 25

2 = 8+6+5+4+4+2 = 29

3 = 10+8+6+5+4+2 = 35

4 = 8+6+6+4+2+0 = 26

Most impressive!

Lets go with the highest one, 35 points. 16, 15, 14, 13, 12, 10.

Lets say Elven Fighter (archer) with the assigned scores:

Str 15
Dex 18
Con 12
Int 12
Wis 13
Cha 10

Then we get to roll a d4 and add that to any of the above scores, topping out at 18. Lets say we max out our d4 and get 4 points. 1 in Str to make it a 16, 2 in Con making it a 14 to boost the hp, and 1 in Wis making it a 14 giving us nice even numbers.

Str 16
Dex 18
Con 14
Int 12
Wis 14
Cha 10

Thats not so bad. I can live with that. Dropping the point buy should give you lower scores.

However this does make playing a human MUCH more attractive because you don't have to spend any of your d4 points in boosting up lowered scores.

Its a good thing there aren't any power-gamer/min-maxers in our group!

Farcaster
07-26-2007, 12:25 PM
If you're going that way, I would recommend a clause to say a character can't boost their score higher than 20 with it.

I would take it a step further and say that the player could not add more than 2 points to a single statistic.

Inquisitor Tremayne
07-26-2007, 12:46 PM
I would take it a step further and say that the player could not add more than 2 points to a single statistic.


I think capping the ability at 18 is enough. Putting the restriction on how many points you can invest in a single stat takes away the illusion that they are really boosting their scores.

Take the example above. This time with a 29 point buy, the one I am more likely to use.

you get 15, 14, 13, 12, 12, 10

Elven Fighter (archer)

Str 13
Dex (15) 17
Con (14) 12
Int 12
Wis 12
Cha 10

Then maxing out the d4, 1 point in Dex to max it out at 18 and 3 points in Str bringing it up to 16, for an array that looks like this:

Str 16
Dex 18
Con 12
Int 12
Wis 12
Cha 10

Still not bad. No negatives but not overpowered. Can excel in the selected focused area.

With a human and maxing out the d4 you can get:

Str 14
Dex 15 (18) +3
Con 13 (14) +1
Int 12
Wis 12
Cha 10

Inquisitor Tremayne
07-26-2007, 12:50 PM
Hey InfoStorm, what are the point buy totals with the above arrays?

Just to see what the difference is.

Ed Zachary
07-26-2007, 01:50 PM
Why stop an ability score at 18? If a player puts all their attention to one ability, the other abilities will suffer. You will get a more interesting character that's stronger where you want it, and severely flawed in other areas. It's better for role playing.

One of the clerics in my game just made a kick ass roll for Dispel Magic. She had extra spells because of a godlike Wisdom, and was able to cast that spell. But she neglected her Constitution and the spell failed because she missed her Concentration check.

Karui_Kage
07-26-2007, 02:21 PM
I'm saying to stop a score at 18 before racial modifiers (it can get to 20, or even 22+ afterwards) because it makes sense. At 1st level, a character only has basic experience. For him to already have a score that rivals the greatest of his time at level 1 is a bit silly. That, and it makes sense for balancing.

Ed Zachary
07-26-2007, 04:02 PM
I'm saying to stop a score at 18 before racial modifiers (it can get to 20, or even 22+ afterwards) because it makes sense. At 1st level, a character only has basic experience. For him to already have a score that rivals the greatest of his time at level 1 is a bit silly. That, and it makes sense for balancing.

OK, that makes sense. I wouldn't have a first level character start with anything higher than an 18 before the racial modifiers.

Skunkape
07-27-2007, 07:21 AM
Any of the games I run with point buy systems, which have included GURPS, Hero System, Tri-Stat and DnD, I've always had an upper limit to the character stats prior to racial modification. The max depends on the system in use of course, but it makes better sense to have some kind of limit like that. I think it's a good choice for a GM to do that.

Course, I also usually go the other way to, and make sure the characters have minimum stats as well. Usually, it works out to the character having a minimum rolled, etc, using DnD as an example, 3 would be the minimum stat I would allow, if players could lower their stats to gain more points to use that is.

Most systems don't allow the players to subtract points from a stat to increase another one, but some do, so that needs to be taken into account, or a system will make the characters start with 0 in each stat and buy it up from there, so that's why I set a minimum for those systems.

Argent
07-27-2007, 08:06 AM
I like that point buy plus d4 method, I'll have to give that a whirl the next time I start a group of players. Actually, I have a d20 Modern game coming up, maybe I'll use it then.

Here's a question, a bit of a tangent: as DMs, do you insist that stats get generated in front of you, or do you accept characters generated in absentia? I'm curious. I usually insist that all characters be generated at a first session, so that the party can find a balance.

InfoStorm
07-27-2007, 08:27 AM
I think capping the ability at 18 is enough. Putting the restriction on how many points you can invest in a single stat takes away the illusion that they are really boosting their scores.

Take the example above. This time with a 29 point buy, the one I am more likely to use.

you get 15, 14, 13, 12, 12, 10

Elven Fighter (archer)

Str 13
Dex (15) 17
Con (14) 12
Int 12
Wis 12
Cha 10 = 29 (we knew that)


Then maxing out the d4, 1 point in Dex to max it out at 18 and 3 points in Str bringing it up to 16, for an array that looks like this:

Str 16
Dex 18
Con 12
Int 12
Wis 12
Cha 10 = 36 (the +3 in STR = 5 pts, +1 in DEX = 2pts)


Still not bad. No negatives but not overpowered. Can excel in the selected focused area.

With a human and maxing out the d4 you can get:

Str 14
Dex 15 (18) +3
Con 13 (14) +1
Int 12
Wis 12
Cha 10 = (same as last)


Opinion: Fudging the point but, to me, is worthless. If you don't think XX points is enough, just grant 2-4 more points for the point buy. I've discovered from my copious character building that a 32 point buy is enough to make any sufficiently powerful character. I admit that sometimes I wish I had a couple more points, but I prefer keeping the characters balanced even more.

Side note: I use the point buy also when I make important villians, with full adversaried getting the same 32 pts as characters, with -4 points per level below them in whatever bad-guy structure I'm using. Keeps the players realizing that if they are foolish, they'll get their butts handed to them.

Heck, just this Wednesday, the PC's in my game went "RUN AWAY! RUN AWAY!" from an encounter they ran into because of a wrong decision, well a bad decision and 100 points of damage to a PC in 1 round.

Inquisitor Tremayne
07-27-2007, 09:27 AM
Here's a question, a bit of a tangent: as DMs, do you insist that stats get generated in front of you, or do you accept characters generated in absentia? I'm curious. I usually insist that all characters be generated at a first session, so that the party can find a balance.

This is the reason I am soooo keen on initiating a point-buy for my games. I insist that stats be rolled in front of me or you use a point buy in absentia. But inevitably there is going to be a player who rolls stats away from the table and thinks that they are fine and comes in with them as that. I usually let it go but I want a level of equality across the board.


So from InfoStorms point buy calculations: You can take a 29 point buy plus a d4 and get what essentially would be a 36 point buy.

Interesting.

Vimachipal
07-27-2007, 09:32 AM
This is the reason I am soooo keen on initiating a point-buy for my games. I insist that stats be rolled in front of me or you use a point buy in absentia. But inevitably there is going to be a player who rolls stats away from the table and thinks that they are fine and comes in with them as that. I usually let it go but I want a level of equality across the board.

Where is Moritz, I think he rolled all 18s!

Hi there!!! :):):)

Karui_Kage
07-27-2007, 10:41 AM
I give them Sphyre's stat option only if they roll in front of me, or they can use regular point buy elsewhere. If they bring in stats they rolled elsewhere, they need to re-roll them.

Moritz
07-27-2007, 12:07 PM
Where is Moritz, I think he rolled all 18s!

Hi there!!! :):):)


Oh totally, you shoulda seen the dice fall, it was like magic. They were tumbling across the table and when I thought it was going to be a four, that split second and inertia made it a third six.

Vimachipal
07-27-2007, 12:33 PM
Oh stop it, just admit you painted 6s on each side of your dice...

Moritz
07-28-2007, 11:54 AM
Funny you should say that. In a champions game, I had taken white-out to 3d6 making the 4 a 2, the 5 a 1, and the 6 a 2. (You want to roll low in this game)

Hence the reason I think everyone, given the opportunity, will fudge or cheat. Because for the most part, I'm Lawful good with Neutral slants, and I'll even fudge a roll from time to time.

Oh my god, another 20!

Skunkape
07-30-2007, 07:29 AM
Yeah, if I were allowing dice rolled characters, the players would roll at the table during the first session, but since I use a point buy method, they can create their characters before the first session and we can start playing then. I will have also had discussions with the players about their characters prior to that first session, making sure they've decided on background information, character motivation, etc.

I've also had a chance to look over their characters and get ideas as to how to torture...err I mean how to hook them into the game with the rest of the group.:D

rabkala
07-30-2007, 10:02 PM
I usually use the countdown method. 18,17,16,15,14,13 ; but I have also allowed all 18's for everyone. Better than anything I have ever seen anyone roll in front of me and best yet fair. The players are happy with the incredible characters, until they realize I have bumped up all the monster scores as well.
:eek:

I once allowed them to use a character generator program on the computer. Only one player actually took the first roll to make his character, while the others all re-rolled hundreds of times.

Ed Zachary
07-30-2007, 10:05 PM
I usually use the countdown method. 18,17,16,15,14,13 ; but I have also allowed all 18's for everyone.

I use 18(+4), 16(+3), 14(+2), 12(+1), 10(+0), 08(-1)... better spread.

Argent
07-31-2007, 07:54 AM
I have used an 18 as a player reward before. I always ask the players to bring me a character background before we start play, so that I can customize the game to them. But I don't hound them, and I don't ask more than once. Anyone who actually got it to me by the deadline would get to increase one ability score to 18. If they all ready had an 18, they could increase a score to 17, and so on. I would make sure to announce at the first session what they were getting and why. After that, not surprisingly, the players were more inclined to listen when I suggested an "extra-curricular" assignment. ;)

Skunkape
07-31-2007, 07:56 AM
I have used an 18 as a player reward before. I always ask the players to bring me a character background before we start play, so that I can customize the game to them. But I don't hound them, and I don't ask more than once. Anyone who actually got it to me by the deadline would get to increase one ability score to 18. If they all ready had an 18, they could increase a score to 17, and so on. I would make sure to announce at the first session what they were getting and why. After that, not surprisingly, the players were more inclined to listen when I suggested an "extra-curricular" assignment. ;)

Very good way to get the players to give you, as GM, the kind of information you need. I did something similar to my players, had them fill out a questionaire and gave them extra skills, contacts, items, etc from them filling out the questionaire.

Argent
07-31-2007, 08:02 AM
Very good way to get the players to give you, as GM, the kind of information you need. I did something similar to my players, had them fill out a questionaire and gave them extra skills, contacts, items, etc from them filling out the questionaire.

That's an excellent idea. I love giving the players rewards that, while not as tangible as an boosted stat, can help them out in the right situation. And rewarding them with things based on their background encourages them to role-play, which is never a bad thing.

InfoStorm
07-31-2007, 10:05 AM
I used to, and still do, award good backgrounds with bonus initial equipment. Normally a potion/scroll or two with 1st level characters, sometimes a mostly used wand or a special weapon, not necessarily magical, but sometimes special materials.

Moritz
08-01-2007, 05:16 PM
I remember a HERO game once where the GM promised an additional 5 points to everyone who got their characters in by a certain deadline (three days prior to the game); and when her husband hadn't even generated his character or background even by the night of the game, she still gave him the 5 points. Many were pissed. PS: It's the same guy from the other thread.

rabkala
08-03-2007, 10:41 PM
I remember a HERO game once where the GM promised an additional 5 points to everyone who got their characters in by a certain deadline (three days prior to the game); and when her husband hadn't even generated his character or background even by the night of the game, she still gave him the 5 points. Many were pissed. PS: It's the same guy from the other thread.

I had a similar thing happen in a game in which I played. While I wrote a well thought out six page background, the DM's brother scribbled a simple paragraph on the back of his character sheet. His brother was rewarded heavily, while I was not. When I questioned this, he explained that he expected more from a college grad like me than his highschool dropout younger brother.

Moritz
08-06-2007, 08:35 AM
That just sets the mood for the entire game, knowing that you will never get beyond the DM's favored player.

Ed Zachary
08-06-2007, 09:02 AM
Beware the DM who introduces his favorite character as an NPC.

It can do and know everything better than the PCs, and always has good luck.

starfalconkd
08-06-2007, 09:24 AM
Is it wrong that my spectacular favorite NPCs with excellent stats and cool items occasionally get killed or make horrific mistakes due to their expectation of overwhelming luck? I prefer my PCs to be the stars of the show, if my npcs upstage them at lower levels it only sets the stage for the pcs to save said npc at higher levels I especially enjoy having pcs befriend these apparent super heroes and begin to understand they have some sort of huge flaw that drives them to their apparent perfection.

Moritz
08-06-2007, 09:28 AM
In my world, the game revolves around the PC's. But the world still goes on in the background with or without their influence.

There was a time when the party came across another group of NPC adventurers on the same quest. Revealing the game isn't instanced.

TheYeti1775
08-06-2007, 11:10 AM
Very good way to get the players to give you, as GM, the kind of information you need. I did something similar to my players, had them fill out a questionaire and gave them extra skills, contacts, items, etc from them filling out the questionaire.
A friend of mine created one like that. I have it on PDF if anyone is interested.

Skunkape
08-06-2007, 12:53 PM
In my world, the game revolves around the PC's. But the world still goes on in the background with or without their influence.

There was a time when the party came across another group of NPC adventurers on the same quest. Revealing the game isn't instanced.

My players understand that the world continues running while they are busy somewhere doing whatever it is that they do. Some of my encounters are timed events that happen at a particular time, whether the PCs are there to view the event or not.

Plus, I try to make sure that the NPCs of the world aren't just standing around waiting for the PCs to show up and interact with them in some way. Course, I do use past PCs as NPCs, but so far, per my PCs, I do a pretty good job of making sure they aren't omniscient and will give the PCs information and opinions according to what the NPC believes, whether it's the correct belief or not.

I've even had one PC complain to me that I was giving him conflicting information, at which time I explained to him that not every NPC knows the correct information, they color it according to their own particular point of view. Course, then he accused me of trying to lead him down the wrong path, but he would have also been mad if I didn't give him multiple courses to follow.:D


A friend of mine created one like that. I have it on PDF if anyone is interested.

I'd like to see it, send it to my Hotmail account, johnprime69. I always like to look over what other GMs are using to help PCs create a background. Not all PCs need help, but it's always good to have something available for them if they want/need it.

TheYeti1775
08-06-2007, 01:52 PM
Sorry tried to attach it.
Was too big.

I'll email it from home.

Yeti

TheYeti1775
08-06-2007, 08:11 PM
Email sent.

Skunkape
08-07-2007, 06:35 AM
Got it, Thanks! I'll check it out when I get time!:D

rabkala
08-07-2007, 11:33 AM
I remember using the hardcore 3d6 method in several of the first games I played in. I am glad to see nobody would think of using it now.

Kind of a related side question:
Does anyone use software/ programs like E-tools, PC Gen, Hero forge, etc. for their character?

TheYeti1775
08-07-2007, 01:19 PM
I remember using the hardcore 3d6 method in several of the first games I played in. I am glad to see nobody would think of using it now.

Kind of a related side question:
Does anyone use software/ programs like E-tools, PC Gen, Hero forge, etc. for their character?
Yes, I have both E-Tools and PC-Gen.
I rarely open E-Tools anymore.
PC-Gen, I mainly use to make up NPC's or help make characters for newbie players.
Generally though for tracking my characters I use the character sheet from http://www.ssa-x2.com/[/URL] I use his sheet, both the Reader and the Full versions since I have the full Adobe at home and reader at work.
An even simpler one that can fit on a 3.5 disk for an 'application' character sheet is the one here: [URL]http://frozen.kontek.net/misc/apps.shtml (http://www.ssa-x2.com) It is good small application, great for NPC's. Can store thousands of them on my flash drives.

So whats your question about on those tools?

Moritz
08-07-2007, 06:42 PM
http://frozen.kontek.net/misc/apps.shtml

LOVE IT...
Thanks

TheYeti1775
08-07-2007, 09:26 PM
LOVE IT...
Thanks
Glad you like it, if you scroll further down on that page, he provides the source code also for anyone that wants to improve on it.

Argent
08-08-2007, 12:17 PM
A friend of mine created one like that. I have it on PDF if anyone is interested.

Yes, please! argentbear@gmail.com, please and thank-you.

TheYeti1775
08-08-2007, 01:46 PM
Yes, please! argentbear@gmail.com, please and thank-you.
Will email it tonight when I get home.

Farcaster
08-08-2007, 01:52 PM
Yeti, send it to me and I'll post it up for everyone to be able to download.

As an aside, I strongly recommend not posting your email addresses in any public forums because bots can pick these up and add them to spam lists. If you want to give someone your email address, you may just want to send it to them by PM instead.

Skunkape
08-08-2007, 02:57 PM
Yeti, send it to me and I'll post it up for everyone to be able to download.

As an aside, I strongly recommend not posting your email addresses in any public forums because bots can pick these up and add them to spam lists. If you want to give someone your email address, you may just want to send it to them by PM instead.

That's why I posted the Hotmail addy, I use it for just that problem.:D

TheYeti1775
08-08-2007, 04:37 PM
Yeti, send it to me and I'll post it up for everyone to be able to download.

As an aside, I strongly recommend not posting your email addresses in any public forums because bots can pick these up and add them to spam lists. If you want to give someone your email address, you may just want to send it to them by PM instead.
Farcaster,
I sent you a PM for your email, since you can't attach on the Board's email.


Yes, please! argentbear@gmail.com, please and thank-you.
Went ahead and sent it to you Argent.

Inquisitor Tremayne
08-09-2007, 08:02 AM
So I am pretty much sold on being "progressive" and switching completely over to point buy.

Who's with me!!??

InfoStorm
08-09-2007, 08:50 AM
Inquisitor, your fellow St. Louisian gamer is already at point buy... I don't know about the other in the area :).

Then again, we just switched ovr to Alternity game rules for a little, so it's entirely different.

Moritz
08-09-2007, 10:14 AM
I still like random die rolls. And making the players work for it.

Inquisitor Tremayne
08-09-2007, 11:20 AM
Inquisitor, your fellow St. Louisian gamer is already at point buy... I don't know about the other in the area :).

Then again, we just switched ovr to Alternity game rules for a little, so it's entirely different.

I have a player in my group who is very much against point buy. One player is for it. And the other is indifferent.

We'll see how it goes.

Ed Zachary
08-09-2007, 12:19 PM
I have a player in my group who is very much against point buy. One player is for it. And the other is indifferent.

Does the guy who's against it roll his stats in his basement when nobody is looking?

TheYeti1775
08-09-2007, 12:34 PM
I have a player in my group who is very much against point buy. One player is for it. And the other is indifferent.

We'll see how it goes.

As the DM which do you prefer. :D
But really you could easily do both, if there is a great discrepancy in their starting stats that would cause a RP problem, use another method of awarding something to the lesser of the two. Perhaps a heirloom +1 item. Extra starting gold. Something minor that doesn't affect too much outside that character.



I still like random die rolls. And making the players work for it.
I like rolling to, but have found I like the point buy to a certain extent. So I just combined it as I mentioned earlier.

Inquisitor Tremayne
08-09-2007, 03:47 PM
As the DM which do you prefer. :D
But really you could easily do both, if there is a great discrepancy in their starting stats that would cause a RP problem, use another method of awarding something to the lesser of the two. Perhaps a heirloom +1 item. Extra starting gold. Something minor that doesn't affect too much outside that character.

As the DM I prefer point buy. But I have yet to enact it officially for my game.

As a player, I don't really mind either one. Except I have a tendency to roll low ALL the time so I am leaning toward the point buy.

rabkala
08-09-2007, 07:38 PM
I don't think I have even met a player who liked point buy.

One good way to find those with the greatest power - gamer streak is to tell them to generate their abilities on their own. There is always somebody who rolled miraculously.

TheYeti1775
So whats your question about on those tools?

No real questions, just wondering. I have e-tools but rarely open it myself. I guess I am horribly stuck in the past, using notebooks most of the time.

Moritz
08-10-2007, 09:09 AM
Does the guy who's against it roll his stats in his basement when nobody is looking?

OH MY GOD, I ROLLED ANOTHER 20!

Moritz
08-10-2007, 09:13 AM
No real questions, just wondering. I have e-tools but rarely open it myself. I guess I am horribly stuck in the past, using notebooks most of the time.

Dude, I'm about the same way. I've avoided using my laptop for D&D games (except in pre games, such as map drawing, character creation, and the such). I'm totally down with just using pencil and paper.

While in heroic games, I'm often using my laptop.

Inquisitor Tremayne
08-10-2007, 09:30 AM
Strictly pencil and paper here.

TheYeti1775
08-10-2007, 10:25 AM
I have a spiral notebooks filled with notes and all about creation or game related stuff.

But for the 'final' sheet (i.e. what I show up to the game with), I put it all into a nice electronic sheet and print it out. I update it each week.

Moritz
08-12-2007, 03:08 PM
Love spiral notebooks, and the yellow legal pads too. Some of my best game notes are on those yellow sheets. Oh, and graph paper. I remember in days gone past walking through the school supply areas of stores looking for the perfect rule of graph paper. I always dug on the 10 lines per inch scale.

Inquisitor Tremayne
08-13-2007, 07:22 AM
So I am curious.

If no one is drawing their maps on graph paper any more, what are you using to create maps?

Moritz
08-13-2007, 07:36 AM
Check campaign resources in fantasy (here (http://www.penandpapergames.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2845)).
There's a huge list of what some of us use.

InfoStorm
08-13-2007, 08:22 AM
So I am curious.

If no one is drawing their maps on graph paper any more, what are you using to create maps?

Maps? I just use any scratch paper I can find and rough it in, with notations on distances. I haven't drawn a single location with more than 4-6 rooms in ages. I do much more above ground adventuring and urban settings.

TheYeti1775
08-13-2007, 10:15 AM
I have loads of Graph Paper at my house.

O and Staples and Office Depot both sell an Easel size pad of 1" square grided paper. Great for drawing out before hand.

Moritz
08-13-2007, 11:21 AM
Oh, and also if I'm really feeling frisky, I just make up the map as I go on the Miniatures Grid.

TheYeti1775
08-13-2007, 11:32 AM
Oh, and also if I'm really feeling frisky, I just make up the map as I go on the Miniatures Grid.


I do that when the group is within 'unmapped' areas of the Underdark. :)

Only describing the area they can see with their torches. Telling them left or right for forks in the tunnel. So far they have been good about keeping track on their own.

Inquisitor Tremayne
08-13-2007, 11:36 AM
Wow! Really? I feel like a control freak.

Maybe its the artist in me but my maps, I HAVE to draw out before hand and they are ALWAYS highly detailed. My players complain that I take too long drawing them out on the battle map. But I like to have everything figured out for when they ask all those questions about the little details.

I'll even sometimes map out the security patrol routes of the guards so I know when a guard comes by or not.

As detailed as they are and as much crap as my players give me they always compliment me on them in the end.

I have to know where security cameras are and the area they cover, where the guard barracks are, where the captains quarters are, where the power station is located, how many technicians they have on hand, how they get their supplies, etc...

Maybe I am over thinking things...

Moritz
08-13-2007, 11:37 AM
We once had a player in our group that was 'mapping' as they went along.

I'd never seen such a horrible rendition of a map, ever.

It was like mapping Zork.

TheYeti1775
08-13-2007, 11:41 AM
Wow! Really? I feel like a control freak.

Maybe its the artist in me but my maps, I HAVE to draw out before hand and they are ALWAYS highly detailed. My players complain that I take too long drawing them out on the battle map. But I like to have everything figured out for when they ask all those questions about the little details.

I'll even sometimes map out the security patrol routes of the guards so I know when a guard comes by or not.

As detailed as they are and as much crap as my players give me they always compliment me on them in the end.

I have to know where security cameras are and the area they cover, where the guard barracks are, where the captains quarters are, where the power station is located, how many technicians they have on hand, how they get their supplies, etc...

Maybe I am over thinking things...

No that control of the map is needed for what you are talking about. For general overland travel, very rarely do you need a complete map. So sometimes it is just whim of where the marker falls.

For my underdark area, I simple keep track of the turns they take out of how many choices. As the passages all wind back and forth up and down, I can send them anywhere I like.

Argent
08-14-2007, 12:00 PM
I should probably break down and pick up some mapping software at some point. But I just love sitting down for a few hours with a pencil and then pencil crayons, and making a map by hand. It was one of the first things I did when I was a young gamer, and I never stopped loving it!

And yes, the 1" square paoster size grid sheets from Staples are brilliant! I draw the map on in coloured marker, and then it allows us to draw on the map in light pencil as we go. For locations that will get used over and over again, I take the sheet and laminate it. Awesome!

Moritz
08-14-2007, 02:49 PM
Back in the day, I had a notebook of hex paper. I was feeling industrious and decided to draw some of the planes. I did excerpts from the 9 levels of hell, several areas of the abyss, and other outdoor regions.

Since then, I've lost the notebook.... not like it was any good or anything, but they were maps that would be cool to have now.

With it on the computer, maps are a little better saved/backed up/printed. But for the most part, I still have all my old gaming stuff in a few rubbermaid boxes.

InfoStorm
08-14-2007, 03:07 PM
My favorite maps were the ones from the (original) D&D maps that came with the Gazetteers. You could cover a wall with them if you wanted to. They had more then enough detail. I wouldn't mind having a program that could make a map like those.

Ed Zachary
08-14-2007, 05:11 PM
I liked the 1/2 inch hex grids.

MortonStromgal
10-17-2007, 04:38 PM
I like point buy when you know what you want to play. I like 3d6 or 4d6 drop the low down the line when I want to get a "random" character.