Nov 122012

So I’ve going over the Barebones Fantasy RPG some more and few random thoughts popped into my crazy little head. The guys over at DWD Studios keep posting some awesome resources on their site so be sure to check it out.
As I’ve said before the glory of this game is its simplicity and with simplicity comes the ability to easily house rules and convert all sorts of goodies. When I see a percentile based system, I think of Call of Cthulhu just like so many other people. I was thinking about how interesting and easy it would be to throw in some crazy nasty magic, Sanity and unknown horrors into a game. I’m probably not the only one who’s thought about that.
Speaking of percentile. Some players just hate math. I mean really, really hate it. It’s not that the math is difficult it’s just that it’s easier with smaller numbers. In the back of my mind, I’ve been thinking about basing the skills and abilities on d20 rolls. Basically dividing just about everything by five and fiddle with a few other things to get the math right. You get the idea. Smaller numbers might mean faster play but I know at least one person would complain that their dice would be jinxed by rolling low on a d20.
Going Gonzo: Races are pretty easy and with Skill/Level system, it could be damned fun to go all gonzo with races. Just build special racial sort like skills and there you go. The only limit your imagination and GM approval.
Development Points: The guys at DWD have posted a handy DP tracking sheet. My initial thought is to just have a nice pile of tokens/stones or whatever to hand out during the session. Quick and easy.
Descriptors & Development Points: This probably because I’m running a FATE based game right now but I really see how Descriptors are like Aspects. So my initial gut reaction is to tweak the rules a bit and make them work more like Aspects. To put it simply, negative Descriptors that make a character’s life more “interesting” would grant a DP. A player could use his character’s positive Descriptors for a re-roll of a Skill or Resistance check. It would just cost him a DP.
There you go. Some random thoughts on the Barebones RPG. It’s going to really to fun to watch this game grow.

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  5 Responses to “Some More Random Thoughts on The Barebones RPG”

  1. Let me know when you “d20-ify” it. I would love a copy of those conversions. I completely agree with you about smaller numbers and rolling high is ‘good’.
    Also, player perception of numbers is HUGE. For example, tell a player he only has a 30% chance to hit something with his sword, and he thinks his PC sucks. But give him a +6 bonus on a d20, and he thinks his PC is well-skilled.

  2. Will do. It’s on my very long to do list. :)

  3. My initial thoughts…
    A conversion from d00% to d20 is pretty straight-forward. The only problem is simulating the “doubles” mechanic for BareBone’s d00%. Using a natural ’20’ on d20 is similar, but not quite the same thing.

    Another possibility is using Green Ronin’s Dragon AGE task resolution system: roll 3d6 + stat, with doubles allowing for a ‘stunt’. 3d6 also give a nice bell-curve result, and its range (3-18) is close enough to d20’s to use similar modifiers.

  4. That’s exactly where I’m having my mental hang up on this.

  5. The easiest way I can think of doing this. And easy is what Barebones is all about. Is this. If a skill is less than 20 then Crit on a Natural 1, Fumble on a Natural 19 or 20. If a skill is 20 or more then crit on a Natural 1 or 2 and Fumble on a Natural 20.

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