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## Re: [Forge-main] Mechanics

 From: Ricardo Gladwell Subject: Re: [Forge-main] Mechanics Date: 03 Nov 2002 14:31:18 +0000

```Hi all,

Despite the fact you are unfamiliar with d20 or the Storyteller system
your observations are intelligent enough that this doesn't seem to

On Sun, 2002-11-03 at 01:17, Sisyphus D wrote:
> THE GOAL
> --------
>
> Unless I am indeed misunderstanding our goal -- a
> distinct possibility, so let me know -- we'd like to
> create a versatile, fast-moving system based upon
> (ability + trait = roll modifier) => roll modifier +
> die roll vs. target difficulty.

You are absolutely right here, although the above is not so strictly set
in stone. I want a simple, 1-5 or 1-10 decimal scale using one dice roll
only (if possible) per check. However, the mechanic I published is not
set in stone (see the alternative mechanics below for other examples of
the type of things I'm looking for).

> First, it may be inconvenient for a fast moving system
> to involve charts -- unless, for instance, said charts
> were printed on the character sheet, of the modifiers
> were calculated beforehand.  It may be better to adopt
> a straightforward equation of ability + skill + die
> roll vs. target difficulty.

You are absolutely right here, and this was the prime reason I dislike
this mechanic. A way around it would be to simply change the dice to
1d20 or 2d10 and simply add ability and skill scores to the roll. Of
course, this means taking away the elegant 0-10 decimal scale of the
1d10 mechanic.

> Next, the d10.  Personally, I'm in favor of a good d10
> to decimal results.  On the other hand, the results of
> a d10 are flatly distributed -- that is to say, a roll
> is just as likely to result in a 9 as it is to result

I concur, which is why I selected the d10. Another alternative would be
to use 2d6, which would give results 3-12, with 5-7 being the most
likely results.

> in a 1.  And when it comes to rather low targets (3 to
> 9, as mentioned above), even a relatively ordinary
> individual of [Ability]:3 and [Skill]:2 will obtain a
> 9 10% of the time -- i.e., he'll successfully
> accomplish a "near-impossible task" 10% of the time.
> Meanwhile, a character with [Ability]:4 and [Skill]:3

Hmm... you are right there, although looking at d20 a ability score of
10 (average) and a difficulty of 19 (quite high) gives you a 10% chance
of success as well. However, I think you are right. Is there anyway we
can modify this to make it more realistic?

> -- change the potential values of abilities and skills
> to a sleek 0 through 10 system (e.g., Agility will
> range from 0 to 10, as will Intelligence, etc.), which
> also fits in nicely with the "decimal" idea;

This still leaves us with the problem of how to deal with the 10%
problem you mentioned above - changing the scales means changing the die
roll to 1d20 and we still end up with the same problem - how do we
attribute roll modifiers? How do ability and skill scores affect the
roll?

> * Another quick note about why d6's might be easier:
> If we want to make a truly generic and universal
> system, we should consider the players, and we might
> take into account that potentially large numbers of
> them will find d10's more difficult to get hold of
> than d6's.  When I was living in Romania, for example,
> I had to play with d6's, and d6's alone -- I simply
> couldn't find any others.  Not that there were none to
> be found, and not that I necessarily minded; I'm
> simply making the point that while d6's can be found
> from here to Bangkok, other polyhedral dice are less common.

Actually, I absolutely agree here. The advantage of d6 is that they are
so prolific. The only problem is that they don't give a natural result
range. It boils down to 1-10 versus 1-6. Also, with the proliferation of
computers and programmable calculators people can create dice-like
results without the actual physical objects. We could create a 2d6
system, though, what do you all think?

So, in order to facilitate more discussion I've included three
alternative task resolution mechanics below. I'm not happy with any of
them, so if they inspire you for your own ideas please let me know :)

Alternative Mechanic #1
-----------------------

In this system you add a chosen Ability and Skill together to get the
roll score. You must the roll a 1d10 and get your roll score or under to
make a successful check. The difficulty is moderated by adding -1/2/3
penalties or +1/2/3 bonuses to the roll.

Pros: Simple and quick mechanic. No charts,

Cons: Too simple - no granularity of difficulties.

Alternative Mechanic #2
-----------------------

Here, as in the default mechanic in Forge 0.0, you add an Ability and
Skill score together and choose a difficulty. However, the Ability +
Skill score determines and additional dice that may be added to the roll
as a bonus. For example, a Strength (3) + Brawl (1) roll would give a
result of 4 which would give him a bonus 1d4 to his roll. Odd numbers
are simply added to the score (3 = 1d2 + 1).

Pros: No charts.

Cons: Requires many different dice. What about scores that don't have
dice, such as 14?

Alternative Mechanic #3
-----------------------

Instead of having traits as being 0-5, traits will be -3 to +3 (average
-1/-2). Skills would be +1 to +3. Simply set a difficulty between 3 and
9, roll a 1d10 and add the scores to the roll.

Pros: Simple scale.

Cons: Removes intuitive, elegant 0-5 trait scale.

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