Friday, March 4, 2022

Creative Problem Solving

The way that the Resolve ability has been re-framed as a broader sense of health, spirit, willpower, and overall 'fight' you have left has given me more wiggle room to use it mechanically. Furthermore, the knowledge that the game is built for solo play means that I have to work on some monster abilities to make them more appropriate. For example, let's look at a Medusa's glare.

Normally, this is a one-roll thing; you fail your check, you are turned to stone. However, that's no fun in a solo game, and it's not really that simple - every round, the medusa wears down your resolve and willpower, tempting you to look into her eyes; every time her voice gets into your head a little bit, you lose a point of Resolve. If you get to Resolve 0, you make eye contact with her - just for a second - and are turned to stone. It fundamentally changes the way that an encounter looks and feels with the medusa.

By the way, that's the big thing I'm working on with monsters - each one has one ability that makes combat with that creature different from others. Battling an ogre and a cyclops should feel different, even though both are big, strong, dumb brutes that live in the hills. 

Here's the draft of how the Medusa's glare works in the rules:

Every round, you must check Focus (CR 11) on your action, before you attack. If failed, you suffer 1 damage as you edge closer to looking at the Medusa. When you reach Resolve 0, you make eye contact with the Medusa and are turned to stone. Use the solitaire framework to determine whether or not you are ever freed; it will be at least 1D6 years (if ever) before another hero slays this Medusa, and there is no guarantee that your statue form will remain unbroken at that time. 


  1. Good idea - I can see how you could craft a similar simple ability for dryads/sirens/vampires etc to enthrall a hero.

    1. Right - a harpy's song doesn't have to equal instant death with a failed save; when you have multiple characters, it's no big deal, but when you are solo, it's time to roll up a new character.