Wednesday, March 22, 2023

More Philosophical Shifting

In the ongoing effort to streamline, simplify, and clarify the rules for Hack'D & Slash'D, I've reversed course on a few things I've recently argued in favor of... the most recent update to the rules (which as of this moment is only done through the rules on Common Spells on page 19) includes these changes:

- I've ditched the rules for multi-classing, and instead inserted several options to make characters more flexible within their existing classes. This was prompted by the problems that I was starting to run into with levels... if you are a mystic 3 with arcane 2/light 1, what is your caster level, exactly? Yeah. That's what I thought. Now, you have a way to make mystics more versatile casters, to add a little bit of casting to the warrior and rogue, and to increase your diversity as you advance. Adding tags at levels 3 and 5 means that you can now be a warrior caster at 1 (but you'll be a relatively vanilla warrior), or add the casting later in your career. This allows you to become the traditional D+D cleric pretty easily: warrior with conjuring tag and light magic. Bingo. You can go more traditional paladin approach (add that caster tag at level 3), or wait until level 5, and use it to round your character out at the end of your career. Rogues can now be bards with relative ease, and mystics can end up picking up several fields over time and becoming quite diverse. All of this feels better.

- I totally overhauled rules for mana. Instead of mana being a separate check, it's now embedded in the original check to cast a spell. All spells require a check, and you only lose mana on a bad failure; the more challenging the spell, the more likely you lose a mana point. If you fail with a 4, you lose a mana point if the spell was rank 4 or higher. There's going to be a crossover where by level 6, you only fail on a roll of 4 or lower, so you're insulated a bit from losing mana on a 5 or 6... since a 5 on the die is going to be a success by the time it matters. The rules for mana have gone through a tremendous evolution over the last few months. 

I pulled xp scaling wayyyy back. There was no reason for numbers to be as big as they were (except B/X hanging over the game still). 1 xp now means something. I'm toying with the idea of awarding xp based on the level of the foe, modified by the difference between the heroes and the foe... but then you have to factor in the number of heroes. It might be easy enough to go with something like this; a creature is worth xp equal to its level. 1-2 creatures = that level; 3-5 creatures = +1 level; 6-10 creatures = +2 levels. Add or subtract the difference between equivalent levels. A level 1 hero vs. a level 1 monster earns 1 xp (same level, level 1 foe). A group of 4 level 4 heroes against 1-2 level 5 monsters each earns 5 xp (same equivalent level defeating level 5 foe). At level 2+, defeating a solo level 1 creature solo is not worth any xp, because it's too easy... but 3-5 of those creatures grants you 2 xp. Still tinkering with these ideas. 

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