Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

The Off-Topic forum for anything non-LDS related, such as sports or politics. Rated PG through PG-13.
honorentheos
God
Posts: 1505
Joined: Mon Nov 23, 2020 2:15 am

Re: Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

Post by honorentheos »

I had to come up with Giant Rabbit Race mechanics for this coming week. Doubt that Res is around or anyone else cares, but if someone does and has thoughts on the mechanic they'd be appreciated. Come Friday I'll find out how it really played out. It's crunchy, which reflects my old school gaming experience and something I enjoy. The intent was to give the players something they could be creative with and try to use their players strengths in unique ways to hopefully make it interesting and somewhat balanced instead of just having the players with the highest animal handling scores run away with it.

Giant Rabbit Race: The rabbit races use the following Giant Rabbit stat block. (text box)

Each round, the rider can choose to move the rabbit’s base movement. Or the rider can choose to perform a dash. To perform the dash requires a combination skill check.

First, the player needs to propose how they are going to try and get ahead of the pack. The DM decides which skill check is applicable and has the player roll. The DC base for the check is 10. This is followed by an animal handling check against a DC of 12, adjusted based on the rabbit’s associated base score for the ability score affected by the method of accelerating or getting ahead. For every point above 12, the DC is lowered by 1, for every point below 12, the DC is raised by one. The animal handling check DC is raised or lowered depending on the degree the previous check succeeded or failed.

Skill Check Result (Against DC 10) Effect
10 No change
11-12 Minus 1 from Animal Handling Check DC
13-15 Minus 2 from Animal Handling Check DC
16-19 Minus 3 from Animal Handling Check DC
20+ Minus 3 from Animal Handling Check DC, and roll w/ Advantage
6-9 Add 1 to Animal Handling Check DC
5 or below Add 3 to Animal Handling Check DC and roll w/ Disadvantage

Example Skills:
Desired action; Rider’s Skill Check; Rabbit’s Associated Skill or Saving Throw for Animal Handling DC
Spurring rabbit to get it to race ahead; Strength (Athletics;) Constitution Save (Not get injured or exhausted by spurring)
Scare other rabbits to get ahead of them; Charisma (Intimidation); Wisdom Save (not get scared itself)
Take inside line to get ahea;d Intelligence Check; Strength (Athletics) to make the necessary moves
Try to sweet talk the rabbit into running faster; Animal Handling; Wisdom Check
Drop caltrops in front of other rabbits to get ahead; Sleight of Hand; Acrobatics to Avoid Caltrops

Players are encouraged to think of what alternatives above or other ideas would be the best options for their character. Be creative.
If the attempt to Dash fails, the rabbit only advances half their base movement instead and cannot dash or power hop on their next turn, either. If the Dash attempt fails by 5 or more, the rabbit revolts against the attempt to control it and attempts to buck the rider off instead. This results in the rabbit taking one of its Power Hop actions in a random direction to be determined by a roll of a d10. A 10 is a jump straight up in the air, the others represent one of the nine squares around the square the rabbit occupies going clockwise, starting with 1 being straight ahead. The distance jumped is 1d4 times 10 ft. Upon landing, the rider must make a STR (Athletics) check or Animal Handling Check DC 15 (rider’s choice) to avoid being ejected from the back of the rabbit. A rider who is ejected takes 1d6 damage for each 10 feet the rabbit power hopped, and lands prone 10 feet in the same direction of travel as the landing location of the rabbit. A rabbit who jumps straight up causes the rider to fall 5 feet behind them. The rider is stunned for 1d4-1 turns. If the rabbit is out of Power Hop actions it can take this day, it instead lays down and refuses to move for 1d4+1 rounds.

Examples of how it works:
On his turn, Sirius wishes to dash and decides he will try to guide his rabbit into the inside lane to race ahead. The DM determines this will be a straight intelligence check for Sirius to find the inside line. Sirius has a +4 on intelligence and rolls a 16, for a total of 20. The DM determines the rabbit would need athletics to take the inside line, which the giant rabbit has a 12 base for athletics, so there is no adjustment to the DC based on the rabbit’s base score. With the success on the previous skill check (-3 to DC and Advantage), the DC becomes a 9, and Sirius gets to roll the animal handling check with advantage. Sirius has a +2 for animal handling, rolls a 13 minus 1 for being an unskilled rider for a total score of 14 (13+2-1=14), beating the DC 9, and successfully takes the dash action to move 100 ft this round.

An NPC Gnome also wishes to dash and decides he will try to spur his rabbit to race ahead. The DM determines this will be a strength athletics check. The Gnome has a +1 for athletics and rolls a 6, for a total of 7 which will raise the animal handling DC by 1. The DM determines the rabbit would need to make a constitution save after being spurred to dash ahead, which the giant rabbit has a 13 base for Constitution. The gnome is also proficient in rabbit racing, so the base is raised by his PB of +1 to 14. This lowers the DC to 10. But with the 7 on the previous roll this is raised by 1 for the final DC of 11 against the Gnome’s animal handling check. Unfortunately, he rolls a 6 again so his +3 in animal handling only achieves a 9 which fails the DC by 2. The rabbit gets kicked in the ribs when he tries to spur it on and can now only move ahead 25 feet this round, and it cannot attempt to dash or Power Hop the next round, either.
honorentheos
God
Posts: 1505
Joined: Mon Nov 23, 2020 2:15 am

Re: Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

Post by honorentheos »

Res Ipsa wrote:
Wed Dec 30, 2020 5:46 pm
honorentheos wrote:
Mon Dec 28, 2020 4:54 am


Hey Res,

To follow up, I have a plan in the campaign now set up for this to occur. They were all asked to create level 12 characters to have available for our next session with the caveat that triggering the need for the sheets is going to based on their decisions but it could conceivably occur very soon. It's possible they will visit a high level druid either this coming session or the next. If they go some other way, I expect to be able to drop it through either a sorcerer who is the magic item auction house dealer they frequent or have it be the story in a history book since they've recently discovered the library in the City.

Plan A is to have the druid put them under the influence of a mystical vision where they live out the events involved in the rise of one of the main villains in the campaign. The reason the party will likely go visit the gnome druids is because the party currently has an amulet that contains the trapped, tortured soul of a High Elf that was intended to be payment to an NPC they don't know other than the NPC is referenced in a letter they recovered, and the amulet was meant as currency in exchange for a certain book. They've been told that high level druids are likely able to break the enchantment, which involves a little fetch quest if they choose to go that way.

I told them not to get attached to their characters but since we took the week of Christmas off I've heard that they have been getting into them. It will be sad when they are crushed mercilessly by a Death Knight and an army of undead protecting a particular necromancy book of the occult, but through their actions it will be lost from the Death Knight's possession and put the Death Knight under the influence of a certain Archmage they know of who is looking for the book and responsible for the High Elf soul being trapped. The intent is to give them more backstory and a taste for just how nasty this BBEG (big bad evil guy for the acronym-challenged) is going to be.
Honor, that sounds like a blast. Please let me know how it goes.
It lasted four sessions and was very well received. I left the door open for their being able to revisit the characters again at points in the campaign.

Thanks again for the idea.
Res Ipsa
God
Posts: 5472
Joined: Mon Oct 26, 2020 6:44 pm
Location: Searching for the missing pieces of the Bothell Codex

Re: Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

Post by Res Ipsa »

You're welcome. I'm glad everyone enjoyed it.
he/him
"Everything we see hides another thing, we always want to see what is hidden by what we see."
– Rene Magritte
User avatar
Dr. Shades
Founder and Visionary
Posts: 705
Joined: Mon Oct 26, 2020 2:48 pm
Contact:

Re: Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

Post by Dr. Shades »

The cultists are excited because their blood witch leader has claimed that Rakdos himself will come to Orossads on the longest night to see the great show promised by the witch[.]
Does this campaign take place on Ravnica?
honorentheos
God
Posts: 1505
Joined: Mon Nov 23, 2020 2:15 am

Re: Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

Post by honorentheos »

Dr. Shades wrote:
Tue Apr 06, 2021 6:05 am
The cultists are excited because their blood witch leader has claimed that Rakdos himself will come to Orossads on the longest night to see the great show promised by the witch[.]
Does this campaign take place on Ravnica?
No, but I liked the flavor of the Rakdos guild so I made adjustments to be able to use it. Rather than a guild, it's purely a cult with the demon lord Rakdos being easily able to enter the material plane if one of his worshipful carnivals perform entertaining enough acts of carnage and chaos. He is working in tandem with the demon lord Yeenoghu, both of whom are being stirred up by an ancient black dragon who has been hiding in human form as the highest priest of a religious order as the Holy Hand of Hanging Garden. His motive is to keep the humanoids from reforming stable alliances between the city states that were left after the collapse of an empire. He has a few different ways of keeping that pot stirred. Chaos and carnage being one. Feeding greed and power lust in other places is also useful.
honorentheos
God
Posts: 1505
Joined: Mon Nov 23, 2020 2:15 am

Re: Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

Post by honorentheos »

I ended up using a mechanic in last weeks game that worked well and thought I'd share. I didn't invent the idea of it, but instead saw it mentioned on a forum and thought it was exactly what I needed. That mechanic was the planning montage.

The players had finished the previous session with a problem. They had decided the solution to the problem was best found through capturing a member of a local gang. The challenge was that this gang is the muscle in the town they are in presently, and they exercise this muscle by patrolling the main market place and surroundings at night in pairs. The party had spent a little time at the end of the session watching the main road out a window and ended that sessions with the simple plan of going out and grabbing one. Then yadda-yadda-yadda, captured gang member and problem solved.

As the DM, I was stuck trying to think of ways of making this interesting and more fun than a couple of stealth checks, some fighting, and perception checks. I was struggling for ideas when I read someone mention they had used a planning montage in a session where the party was trying to infiltrate some home or castle or whathaveyou. That set off the idea light bulb.

So the next session was on Friday when they were going to capture a random gang member for reasons. The way I set it up was to give the players a map of the area they had been in before with the location of torches they would be familiar with and the general layout of the buildings, where alleys were known to be, etc. And I also provided a marker line showing the locations in the torch light where they had seen patrols move and in what direction. Then I told them they had 15 minutes to discuss ideas for planning out how they might go about capturing a member of a patrol. Once time was up, I would go around the table and ask each player to tell me what they did specifically to help the party in their plan and what the goal of it was. They were to describe it like it was a movie scene, Rocky-running-up-steps, A-team lashing gas cans to toilet paper bundles - The more montage trope the description the better. I'd assign a skill and DC to it, and they'd roll to determine if it was a success or failure. I told them in advance that it would help them in their activities.

They did all that, and it made for a fun time at the table. The first few minutes required they get on board with coming up with a plan, but once they got into it they started generating interesting ideas. I held them to describing narratively what they did as their part of the planning, and they had fun with the ups and downs that come with rolling dice against a success threshold. Once completed, I totaled up the successes minus the failures, and told them that every time they performed an action that involved something included in the planning montage they got to add the success total to their modifier roll. Turned out they had six successes total (one rolled a 20 so I let them have a critical success for +2 for fun's sake) and only one failure. So they got a +5 for almost all of the activities involved in the scheme. But more importantly, they had a story already formed for how they'd go about executing the plan which meant the game play was a little more colorful and fleshed out by them as well.

Anyway, it was a happy discovery so I thought I'd share for anyone else who happens to read and runs games.
Res Ipsa
God
Posts: 5472
Joined: Mon Oct 26, 2020 6:44 pm
Location: Searching for the missing pieces of the Bothell Codex

Re: Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

Post by Res Ipsa »

I like that mechanic. Thanks for sharing it.
he/him
"Everything we see hides another thing, we always want to see what is hidden by what we see."
– Rene Magritte
honorentheos
God
Posts: 1505
Joined: Mon Nov 23, 2020 2:15 am

Re: Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

Post by honorentheos »

Hey Res -

It sounded like you were getting back to the table with friends. Mind if I ask what you are playing these days? Ever played Delta Green and have an opinion on it? It caught my eye recently as an alternative CoC that I ran into after going back down the rabbit hole that is the first season of True Detective (best season of television ever made, no debate).

I don't believe I mentioned before I started painting minis for our game which has now gotten a bit out of hand as a side hobby. Even DW is getting interested in painting figures. No war game minis, just ones for our DnD sessions. But I'm at the point I probably have over 500 minis, over half of which need painted. A year ago, this was not even really a twinkle in my mind's eye.
Res Ipsa
God
Posts: 5472
Joined: Mon Oct 26, 2020 6:44 pm
Location: Searching for the missing pieces of the Bothell Codex

Re: Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

Post by Res Ipsa »

honorentheos wrote:
Thu Aug 12, 2021 3:58 am
Hey Res -

It sounded like you were getting back to the table with friends. Mind if I ask what you are playing these days? Ever played Delta Green and have an opinion on it? It caught my eye recently as an alternative CoC that I ran into after going back down the rabbit hole that is the first season of True Detective (best season of television ever made, no debate).

I don't believe I mentioned before I started painting minis for our game which has now gotten a bit out of hand as a side hobby. Even DW is getting interested in painting figures. No war game minis, just ones for our DnD sessions. But I'm at the point I probably have over 500 minis, over half of which need painted. A year ago, this was not even really a twinkle in my mind's eye.
I was, but in light of our new numbers and directives from my local health district, I've gone back to online only. I hope its for a relatively short period, but I gotta be flexible. My only current RPG is the Warhammer RPG. It will likely stay remote for the foreseeable future because one of players has very young children and wants to reduce the risk of exposure. One of my sons was DMing a D&D game for the family, but I've been crazy busy, so that's been on hold.

I'd started our biweekly Eldritch Horror game at the game pub, but I'm seriously considering putting that on hold again. It involves 8-12 people crowded around a couple tables for 3-5 hours. Just a bit more contribution to slowing the velocity of this Delta sucker a little.

My coop group just finished up the campaign for The XXXXX Initiative. It was a ton of fun. It's a game within a game that centers around breaking codes and ciphers. It's a legacy game, so one playthrough only, although there are 14-15 additional puzzles to solve after the story is finished. I had a blast with it. We just started the Vienna Connection, which is four episodes. It's spy v. spy during the cold war. Similar to the Detective series, but more complicated. Choices you make in each episode effect what happens in the following episodes. So far, I'm really liking it.

I really want to get Dune Imperium to the table sometime soon. Same thing with the expanded edition of Anachrony. Probably going to be another few weeks.

If work gets less crazy, I'm thinking of picking up either Paranoia or Tales from the Loop and trying to GM. I've also got a roleplaying card game called Expedition that I need to take a look at. I've never played Delta Green, but I'll take a look. I've heard very good things about True Detective.

So many games, so little time....
he/him
"Everything we see hides another thing, we always want to see what is hidden by what we see."
– Rene Magritte
honorentheos
God
Posts: 1505
Joined: Mon Nov 23, 2020 2:15 am

Re: Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

Post by honorentheos »

I've seen a game at game stores called Eldritch Horror that looked like it was similar to the Betrayal at House on the Hill. Is that the same game you play biweekly? If so, I'm curious if it is like Betrayal and your group is playing through scenarios every couple of weeks? Betrayal is good fun so I'm intrigued if you have a regular game time to play something like that.

Paranoia is the only one of the games you mentioned I've played before, and that was before the internet was a thing so I'm sure it's very different now. Or maybe not. Commies never get old as "villains" I assume? Or have they changed to terrorists? In a sense, friend computer may be a bit too real now...hmmm.

I've seen a bit of the Warhammer universe, had a high school friend buy some figures once that we tried out for a squad-level war game but it didn't really go anywhere. I've had some exposure to Dark Heresy which really seemed interesting as an RPG. But I am not very familiar with that or any other RPGs. Does the game you play take place in a fantasy setting?

Tales of the Loop looks very interesting. I may have to check it out in more detail. Haven't heard of the show until googling it. Very cool.

If you haven't watched the first season of True Detective, I have a feeling you'd probably enjoy it. It's the most liminal sublime viewing experience I've had as an adult. Possibly the only TV season I have rewatched multiple times and have no problem sitting down with someone to rewatch if they haven't seen it. Our daughter hadn't watched it which I didn't realize so we ended up spending a few days over the Memorial Day weekend binging episodes of it. I tried to watch the second season and I think I finished it....maybe. It wasn't great. It wasn't bad but it's hard to watch a bad imitation of something that was so great and not feel like someone had passed off oregano as weed and kept looking at the audience and was earnestly asking, "You're feeling that, right? RIGHT?! You're getting a buzz off this, RIGHT?" in my opinion, what made the first season great started with the sense of liminal space it created that was intensified by brilliant acting on the part of both Woody Harrelson and Matthew McConaughey. The second season assumed it was the noir atmosphere that was really just a vehicle for the former and whiffed by taking the LA-noir to 11 without any of what really made the first season great. Anyway, I was feeling the cold turkey come down after binge watching it again and was going into any promising alley to find a friendly hand down when I stumbled on a few Delta Green write-ups.

I hear you about too many games, not enough time to play. DW isn't really a game player so I'm lucky our daughter loves games. A few friends and a couple of neighbors are into games, too, but like you the DnD session has been the extent of gaming I've done over the last year. Once vaccines were available we started playing in person and the mini obsession started.
Post Reply