Monday, February 27, 2012

Untimately's 20 Questions

Since everyone else is doing it, here are my answers to Untimately's 20 Questions

Ability scores generation method? 3d6 in order, or arranged to order.  I leave this up to the group a a whole.
How are death and dying handled? Per 2e.  0 hp and below is unconscious. -1 hp per round.  -10 is dead.
What about raising the dead?  Per the raise dead, reincarnate and resurrection spells.  If you want an NPC cleric to raise a PC it is really going to cost you.  In most cases the PC will have to undertake a quest for the NPC in exchange for the service of raising the dead character.
How are replacement PCs handled? New PCs enter the game 1 level below the average level of the party.  Or the player's character had any henchmen, they can take over one of those characters as a PC.
Initiative: individual, group, or something else? Individual.
Are there critical hits and fumbles? How do they work? If the group agrees to it.  Natural 20 is max damage.Fumble depends on the weapon used.  It generally means they dropped the weapon.

Do I get any benefits for wearing a helmet?  I don't track helmets unless they are particular magic helms.
Can I hurt my friends if I fire into melee or do something similarly silly? Yes.
Will we need to run from some encounters, or will we be able to kill everything?  Yes.  Some encounters can not be beaten through brute force.
Level-draining monsters: yes or no? Yes.
Are there going to be cases where a failed save results in PC death? Yes.
How strictly are encumbrance & resources tracked?  Not very strictly, unless the situation calls for it, such as a travelling through a desert.
What's required when my PC gains a level? Training? I leave this up to the group when the game starts.  I like training, but generally players don't.
Do I get new spells automatically? Clerics yes, Magic Users no.
Can it happen in the middle of an adventure, or do I have to wait for down time? If we go for the no training option, it can happen in the middle of the adventure.
What do I get experience for?  Anything I as the GM decide to award experience for.  This includes defeating monsters, gaining treasure, getting past traps.  I reward extra points for critical thinking and good roleplaying.
How are traps located? Description, dice rolling, or some combination? Description + dice roll.  No description of how they are checking lowers the chance of finding a trap.  The closer the description of the search is to matching the actual trap, the bigger a bonus I give on the roll.
Are retainers encouraged and how does morale work?  Retainers are encouraged, if the entire group wants them.  Morale is based on the charisma of the PC that hired them, modified by current working conditions.  Morale is checked when I feel that it should be.
How do I identify magic items?  Scrolls can be identified via read magic. Common potions can be identified by a wizard.  Armor and weapons through use.  Wands, staves and rods need a keyword, but one it is know item is identified.  Only unique magical items really require the identify spell.
Can I buy magic items?Oh, come on: how about just potions? Low level potions and scrolls can be purchased.
Can I create magic items? When and how?  Yes.  Generally I give Magic users the equivalent of the 3e item creation feats, though I do not require XP costs.  Scrolls can be scribed anywhere there is the Magic User has some privacy (a room at an inn) as long as the have the required materials.  Everything else requires a permanent laboratory.
What about splitting the party?  I allow it, but if some people stop having fun because they are left out, I'll have to stop it.

I'll have to expend on some of these answers in other posts.  The questions on magic items, retainers and traps are of particular interest.

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