I totally just used to abbreviations in my post without telling you what they were first. Aren't you proud?
|title unknown by Richard M. Powers|
". . . USING THE UNIT MORALE CHART: Use this chart when a unit's morale is called for, such as facing up to a Demon. If the roll is missed on one die, the unit must withdraw from the action for one turn at half movement, and then check again. The facing of the unit is up to the player whose unit is affected. If the morale save is made, the unit will obey battle orders . . ." (Becker, 27)
". . . Monsters and NPCs are an entirely different matter . . . The DM makes their decisions, trying to think like each creature or non-player character, in turn.
In combat, thinking like a creature mainly means deciding what actions it takes and how badly it wants to fight - the morale of the creature.
As a general rule, monsters and NPCs are no more eager to die than player characters. Most withdraw when a fight starts to go badly. Some panic and flee, even casting their weapons aside. If they think they can get mercy, brighter foes might fall to their knees and surrender. A few bloodthirsty or brainless types might fight to the death - but this doesn't happen too often. These are the things that make up morale, things the DM must decide, either through role-playing or dice rolling . . ." (Cook, 69)
|Jeff Easley title unkown|
". . . The first (and best) way to handle morale is to determine it without rolling any dice or consulting any tables. This gives the biggest range of choices an prevents illogical things from happening . . . To decide what a creature does, think about its goals and reasons for fighting . . ." (Cook, 69)
". . . Unintelligent and animal intelligence creatures attack, most often for food or to protect their lairs. Few ever attack for the sheer joy of killing . . . A mountain lion, for example, doesn't hunt humans (as a rule) and doesn't stalk and attack humans as it would a deer . . . Such creatures normally allow a party of adventurers to pass by unhindered, without even revealing themselves. Only when the creature is close to the lair does the chance of attack increase . . . When they do become involved in combat, animals and other creatures rarely fight to the death . . . Their interest is in food . . ." (Cook, 69)
". . . Intelligent Creatures have more complicated motivations than the need for food and shelter . . . Greed, hatred, fear, self-defense, and hunger are all motivations, but they are not all worth dying for . . . As a guideline for intelligent creature and NPC motivation, consider the actions of the player characters. How often do they fight to the death? Why would they? At what point do they usually retreat . . ." (Cook, 69)And here comes a point where I begin to understand why I might have simplified monsters' motivations. My players almost never retreat. Not once in the 13 years that I've been running have I had a group that fell back (though I have been a part of two groups who fell back as a player). Typically my players fight to the death every time the enter into an encounter. This begs the question, though: do they determine their notion on how to handle a fight from the way that my monsters interact with them, or do I take my lead from them?
"I think all they're suggesting is A) Sexy monsters will try to be sexy to people besides straight teen boys. B) Not all female monsters will be sexy or sexy in the same sort of Franzetta way that they were in the 1e Monster manual. C) D&D doesn't show nekkid boobs (or boob-like nipple free domes) anymore - presumably for the children and to head off the next satanic panic.
I mean that's nothing to freak out about. Sounds a lot like the inclusivity bit in the 5e starter set - which to me seems pretty reasonable. Table top has always been a haven for folks that feel a bit outcast from the everyday world - and these days folks are starting to recognize that's a lot of people besides white teenage straight boys whose souls are melting form the conformity of the Mid-Western suburb."
|Judge of Ages by John Harris|
Boys, get ready. We're burning down the mountain next Tuesday. Bring your dice and get ready 'cause Tut said you ain't got a hair on your asses and you ain't shit.
". . . It doesn’t help that most RPGs, rightly or wrongly, don’t have much in the way of balls when it comes to restricting the player character in any way. Compare, say, Baldur’s Gate 2 with Dragon Age 2 – partly because it’s a good comparison, partly because it wouldn’t be a good week if I didn’t annoy someone on the Codex. I’m thinking in terms of magic specifically. Baldur’s Gate 2 largely takes place in the city of Amn, and one of the cardinal rules there is ‘no magic without a license’. Dragon Age 2 takes place in a city controlled by Templars, whose job it is to keep mages under control, and not without some reason. Magic isn’t just whizzy-whizzy-bang-bang, but linked to demonic possession and all kinds of other health hazards.
Despite this, being a mage – an illegal, ‘apostate’ mage at that – doesn’t mean a damn thing. The guards will completely overlook fireballs in the street, you solving your problems with lightning bolts and all kinds of other stuff like that, even before you get to a point where you’re important enough to turn a blind eye. It’s a continuation of one of Dragon Age’s fundamental lore issues, that magic is meant to be rare and special and dangerous, but fuck that because players want to be/fight mages.
The trouble is that in not giving magic users at least some sense of threat or actual sense of being under the thumb, who cares? Baldur’s Gate 2 meanwhile made being a spellcaster a problem. Break out the elements and some very tough wizards would show up to impolitely request you not do that, with your three options being a) apologise and stop, b) buy a damn license, or c) prove yourself too powerful for them to stop. The latter especially is one of the most satisfying things you can do in that game. Even before that though, that tiny mechanical demand to keep the metaphorical magic wand holstered made a big difference to both mages and the setting . . ." (Cobbett).
|Against the Giants cover by Bill Willingham|
. . . Giant's Bag Contents: There will be numerous occasions when bags and chests will be searched by the party. The contents of these containers may be determined randomly by using the table hereafter. The number of items in the bag or other container is simply determined by rolling five four-sided dice (5d4) to obtain a random number of items between 5 and 20 . . .
Giant's Bag Contents Table:Die Roll ______ Item In Bag or Other Container ______01 - 03 old axe blade for use as hand chopper04 - 17 boulders, small (1-4)18 - 19 bowl and spoon, tin or pewter, battered20 - 21 brass item, various and sundry, bent22 - 23 caltrops, iron, large (1-6)24 - 25 cheese, hard, slightly moldy and stinky26 - 30 cloak, shabby, wool or hide31 -32 comb and hairpins, bone33 - 40 cooking pot, iron41 - 43 horn, drinking44 - 47 knife, skinning48 - 53 linens, various, soiled, patched54 - 60 meat, haunch of61 - 64 money, copper (100 - 400 pieces)65 - 67 money, silver (20 - 80 pieces)68 - 69 money, gold (10 - 40 pieces)70 - 76 pelt, fur, worthless and mangy77 - 83 rope, 10' - 120 ' coil, very strong84 - 85 salt, small bag or box of86 - 90 sandals, old91 - 98 skin, water or wine, full99 - 00 teeth or tusks, animal, no ivory value (1 -8)
It is suggested that no item be duplicated; roll again if a duplicate item is indicated by any given roll . . . (pg 2 - 3, Gygax)
Shortly before I was going to run my first game back in the early months of 2005 I was sitting in the Den working on a list of things that...