Tuesday, March 12, 2013

"Perfect" System Update: Thinking of Creature Stat Changes

One of my goals with building my hack of the SWN system is to try and keep the simple OSR feel, but also incorporate some of the elements of later iterations of D&D into the system as well. After all, there are parts that I feel old school games did far better to their contemporary counterparts, while there are things I think that were improvements on the old way of doing things.
For the most part, I like SWN’s statblocks. They are clean and simple. However, all the creatures be built from the same table doesn’t appeal to me as much. Plus, I’ve never been a fan of Morale as a stat. I’ve never used it in any AD&D game I’ve ever ran, since I prefer to be the decider on when and if foes attempt to break from combat.
Some of the changes I’m considering are:
·         Tying HD rolled to the creature’s size. Along with assigning size to creatures, I’m going to implement size categories and the bonuses and penalties to attack rolls and AC as found in 3rd Edition D&D and the various D20 games. Yes, this will add some complexity, but not much and the changes will better fall in line with the minis play that I tend to use in game.  
·         Dropping Morale. Morale is solely up to the GM with hints to the creature’s relative courage given in the description and further bolstered by the Intelligence stat (see below).
·         Adding Intelligence. This isn’t a character type value, but is in line with what was seen in AD&D 2nd Edition with general descriptive levels of Intelligence.
·         AC, like in all of my games will be Ascending.
·         There will be differing save scores for different Hit Die, like in Hulks and Horrors. This falls in line with the idea that bigger, sturdier creatures will be able to shrug off effects easier.
·         Movement will continue to be in feet.
·         Attack bonuses will likely stay as they are in SWN

Here’s what a Stat block will look like:
Collector Drone
Size: Medium
AC: 15
HD: 3d8
AB: +4
Dmg: 2d6 energy rifle or 1d6 claws
Skill: +1
Group: 1d8
Save: 11+
Move: 30’, Fly 50’ (see below)
Intelligence: Low

Collector drones are the standard Collectors that most people hear about when tales of this species are told. They are armed with strange, organic looking, energy rifles. They can fly across short distances for one round before needing to land. They can fly again after a round of rest and their flight comes with a very noticeable buzzing sound.
Collector Drones can be controlled by a Collector General. These “Harbingers” take on an appearance of nearly bursting with energy. When a Collector General takes direct control of a drone, use the Harbinger stats below.
Collector Drones have limited cognitive abilities, but they do have access to the Stealth skill, but use of this skill is only applicable while walking, not while flying.

By and large the stats aren’t different. AC, AB, Dmg, and so forth are the same. A Collector Drone will get a bump in save score (though I may modify that back closer in line with SWN). Finally, Morale is gone, and Size and Intelligence are added. These are just rough ideas so far, and I’ll post my finished ideas when I’m done.

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