Half-orc

By Michael Wallace on November 23, 2001

  • Prime Requisite: Strength. Other Requirements: Constitution 9, or better.
  • Experience Bonus: 5% for Strength 13-15; 10% for Strength 16-18.
  • Hit Dice: 1d8 per level up to 9th level. Starting with 10th level, +2 hp per level and Constitution adjustments no longer apply.
  • Maximum Level: 12 (36, if optional rules are used.)
  • Armor: Any; shields permitted.
  • Weapons: Any.
  • Special Abilities: Fighter Maneuvers (Lance Attack and Set Spear vs. Charge maneuvers at 1st level; at 660,000 XP, Fighter Combat Options); extra languages (Orc and player’s choice of: Ogre or Goblin); infravision; Hear Noise; Detect by Smell

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Modified Mystic or Monk

By Michael Wallace on June 25, 2001

Modified Mystic and Monk from Dragon Magazine 09/1981

  • Prime Requisite: Strength and Dexterity. Other Requirements: Wisdom 9, or better.
  • Experience Bonus: 5% for Strength or Dexterity 16-18; 10% for Strength and Dexterity 16-18.
  • Hit Dice: 1d6 per level up to 9th level. Starting with 10th level, +2/level after 9 with no CON adjustments.
  • Maximum Level: 21.
  • Armor: None; shield not permitted.
  • Weapons: Any.
  • Special Abilities: At 1st level — Armor Class bonuses, increased Movement, Find Traps, Climb Walls, Move Silently, Hear Noise, Martial Arts and Mystical Abilities.

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Exotic Weaponry

By Angelo on June 23, 2001

This post updates and replaces the previous exotic weapons chart.  Morning Star and Flail are both weapons in original D&D that somehow got left out of the Cyclopedia.  Broadsword is taken from AD&D where it is 2d4.  Rapier stats are also from D&D described in Dragon #175.

The optional rules are provided to add something unique to the weapons, so they’re a little more interesting than just finding “a different kind of sword” that different in name only.

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Topics: Equipment | 1 Comment »

New Mystic Class

By Angelo on June 10, 2001

This is a combination of the Mystic/Monk classes I have posted before.

  • Prim Req: Wis and Dex; Other Requirements: Wis 13+, Dex 13+
  • Experience Bonus: 5% for Wis or Dex 16-18; 10% for Wis and Dex 16-18
  • Hit Dice: 1d6/level, +2/level after level 9 with no Con bonus
  • Maximum Level: 16
  • Armor: None; shield not permitted
  • Weapons: Any
  • Hit Rolls: as Fighter
  • Saving Throws: as Fighter

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Random Encounters

By Angelo on May 23, 2001

Tired of the tedious wandering monster charts in the Rules Cyclopedia that take forever to roll, and seem to produce the same monster over and over?  Try out these encounter tables instead.

  1. Roll 1d20 per day to determine if there is an encounter on that day.  Compare this to the chance of an encounter based on the type of terrain (for example there is a 6 in 20 chance of an encounter).
  2. Roll 2d10 to determine the encounter below.
  3. The DM can assume a 10% chance of bad weather when the encounter occurs.

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Topics: Monsters | 1 Comment »

Handling Poison

By Angelo on May 3, 2001

The purpose of this document is to provide the DM with a system for handling poisons that can be as complicated or as simple as desired. Different ways of handling poisons range from instant death (as found in the Dungeons and Dragons game) and the simple 1 point of damage per round (as found in video games like the Ultima series). These are both very simple, but not realistic ways of handling ALL poisons. Some games have cumbersome charts that still have their limitations. And even with a chart, poisons shouldn’t be completely random. So hopefully this document will help the DM come up with a satisfactory method of handling poisons. This is by no means a scientific analysis of poison or any attempt for reality. This is merely for game play. See the rest of this entry…

Topics: Rules Hints & Tips | 1 Comment »

Dungeon Master Tips from the Astral Plane

By Angelo on September 8, 1999

This is just a list of guidelines I made for myself as a young gamer. Most of these should be obvious, but maybe we need a reminder from time to time.

  • Concentrate on role-playing monsters, think less of numbers
  • Create characters with different personalities
  • Create strong villains who fight intelligently
  • Don’t let all monsters always fight to the death
  • Don’t tell the players everything
  • Don’t give the players suggestions
  • Don’t let the players be in control, be fair, and don’t go ahead until you’re ready
  • Keep game rythm in mind and have encounters as neccessary
  • Keep monster menu, not a chart, and choose from this
  • KISMIF (keep it simple, make it fun) – see Dragon Magazine issue no. 175
  • Action is more fun than architecture
  • People are more interesting than buildings
  • Don’t create lengthy battles with unworthy adversaries

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Optional Rules for Classic Games

By Angelo on September 6, 1999

Written by Angelo and Jeff

Here are some optional rules that you may want to adopt in a more basic type campaign (which I find more fun). When deciding on a rule, go for whatever is more fun or will make a better story-line in the game.

Attributes

Even though it may not be fair to my old players, I think I might adopt this system also. Just roll 9d6 for each phsyical (STR, DEX, CON) and mental (INT, WIS, CHA) attributes and then let the players choose where they want to put them. Allow players to trade 2 for 1 between the 2 categories. If you want, you might consider just rolling 10d6 for each category to give a better chance of getting good scores. Also, don’t roll ability checks much, if at all. Too much rolling dice makes the game too random and not enough story. If you can’t base it on a saving throw, you probably shouldn’t roll it. How creatures react to players should be based on how the players have acted, not on a charisma check. See the rest of this entry…

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