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  1. - Top - End - #31
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    Default Re: Dishonour Before Death!

    Quote Originally Posted by AvatarVecna View Post
    So...any updates?
    Well, I now have a list of things I need to do and how much of them I've done:

    Spoiler: Jormengand's Work-O-Meter, not quite as flashy as Rich's
    Show
    Introduction 100%
    - Basic Principles 100%
    - Roll Durations 100%
    (Overall intro: 100%)
    Character Creation 100%
    - Replacing Old Characters100%
    (Overall Chargen: 100%)
    Statistics, Skills and Abilities 100%
    - Using Skills and Statistics 100%
    - Competence Levels and Probability Chart 100%
    - Statistic Descriptions 100%
    - Skill Uses 100%
    (Overall S/S/A: 100%)
    Combat 100%
    - Timing 100%
    - Combat Objectives and Ending Combat 100%
    - Actions in Combat 100%
    - Moving, Positioning and Distance In Combat 100%
    - Conditions in Combat 100%
    - Objects and Features in Combat 100%
    (Overall Combat: 100%)
    Damage Boxes and Effects 100%
    - Causes of Physical Damage 0%
    - Causes of Mental Damage 0%
    - Causes of Magical Damage 0%
    - Damage Tables 25%
    (Overall Damage: 25%)
    Abilities and Advancement 100%
    - Earning and Spending AP 100%
    - Archetypes 0%
    - Basic Statistic and Skill Abilities 100%
    - Passive Abilities 0%
    - Active Abilities 0%
    (Overall Abilities and Advancement: 50%)
    Equipment and Wealth 0%
    - Wealth and Money 0%
    - Weapons 0%
    - Armour and Shields 0%
    - Tools 0%
    - Miscellaneous Equipment 0%
    - Magic Items 0%
    (Overall Equipment and Wealth: 0%)
    Magic 100%
    Spell List 100%
    - Unleashed Magic 10%
    - Task Magic 5%
    - Finesse Magic 0%
    - Blood Magic 10%
    - Ritual Magic 0%
    - Balance Magic 0%
    - Volatile Magic 5%
    - Channelled Magic 0%
    - Spells with Multiple Drawbacks 5%
    (Overall Spell List: 13.5%)
    Monsters 0%
    Character Sheet 50%
    (Overall Dishonour Before Death: 51%)


    Now, it sorta took me a month or so to get even to this point, but a lot of that was adding and removing and altering things that didn't quite work. For example, damage used to be so severe that every point of damage you took beyond the first 2-10 (depending on how tough you are) inflicted some kind of nasty condition on you. Now it's a quarter of as severe, so this has involved rewriting the spells. Oh, and I spent a while on attempting a class-level system of sorts and something called a "Luck save", which are both dead ducks and contribute to the time but not the actual amount written (there's a totally different advancement system and rather than a luck save, I might make it so that some spells have fixed difficulties so literally only luck can save you from them, or I might not because that's kinda un-fun).

    Also, that 51% is pretty misleading. Not only are there three pages which aren't listed on the contents (because they're before, or are, the contents) but there are 4 pages of Introduction, 5 pages of Skill Uses, and only one page for the Combat, Timing and Combat Objectives and Ending Combat sections... combined. I expect that Causes of Assorted Damage will be one page each, Archetypes will probably be one or two pages, Passive Abilities and Active Abilities will probably be a fair few pages but they aren't fundamentally about coming up with new rules, so it should be okay, most of the Equipment and Wealth section should be relatively short, and the spells are maybe going to be quite long page-wise but not actually involve a lot of text that's hard to come up with. I expect that the 47-page long document should only grow by, we'll say another 28 and make it a nice 75 (and also 28 is roughly in line with what I expect). Definitely rules-medium.

    Let's give a few more sneak peeks at parts of the rules, and we can see what everyone thinks, hmm?

    Spoiler: Introduction sneak peek
    Show
    Dishonour Before Death is designed to handle a variety of settings, from mediæval fantasy to hard science fiction – although if you want to have a game without magic, you would have to delete the magical elements of the game. It functions just fine without them, though. A lot of the example situations in the rules are made for a mediæval setting, particularly the one in the example on the first page. This is the setting in which most of the examples are based.

    However, the examples are just that – examples. The example with the bookshelf would work just as well if it weren't a man dropping a bookshelf on a woman but an alien dropping a shelf full of disks on the living incarnation of a deity. The skill examples remain mostly true regardless of technology levels. Mainly, the difference is in weapons, armour and other equipment.

    The game's rules are designed to be well-defined enough that the Arbiter can make consistent decisions on common situations just by looking at the rulebook, while loose enough that there's flexibility for the Arbiter to adjudicate situations where one of the players attempts something unusual. As a player, you shouldn't have to worry that a different Arbiter may make a different ruling on how hard a wall is to climb, because which walls have which difficulty level is clearly written in the description of Grab, the skill which allows you to climb walls. However, the fact that there are no rules for what happens if you knock over a bookshelf (or a shelf full of disks) – as in the example above - shouldn't dissuade you from trying it either. The rules that do exist regarding weapon attacks and falling objects should allow the Arbiter to come to a reasonable decision: essentially, the existing rules form a basis on which the Arbiter can decide fairly what should happen when someone does something exceptional.
    Spoiler: Roll Durations sneak peek
    Show
    A pair of rolls (one by the attacker and one by the defender) might represent one of three things. Which of them is the case will be specified in the description of the statistic or skill used.

    One, you take some action, usually in combat, which will waste time if failed (or have less effect) but you can usually try again next round if the target remains relevant[...] this is known as an Instance roll duration – each roll represents a single instance of an attack or attempt.

    [...]

    Two, you do some kind of action which immediately works or doesn't.[...] This is known as an Immediate roll duration – it determines your success or failure and you can't try again.

    [...]

    Three, you do something with a duration, such as trying to sneak past some guards.[...]This is a Continuous roll duration – you can try once, and your success or failure lasts for the duration of the action.
    Spoiler: Statistics, Skills and Abilities sneak peek
    Show
    People have nine statistics: Might (MT), Dexterity (DX), Agility (AG), Vigour (VG), Intellect (IN), Awareness (AW), Personality (PR), Will (WL) and Magic (MG). Each one starts as 1, except Magic, which starts at 0. These are advanced via purchasing passive abilities, which is part of character advancement.

    Two of these nine statistics are applied to each of 36 different skills listed in the table below, including attack and defence skills (italic in the table), saving throws (underlined in the table), skills which represent your resistance to damage (italic and underlined in the table) and types of magic (which are all MG-based). Checks made against a statistic directly are made using double that statistic. In general, you roll a number of d6s equal to the sum of the relevant abilities. Some abilities will provide extra dice to a skill in specific. Each skill also either specifies a skill used to oppose it, or a number of difficulty dice used to oppose an attempt at a specific task (usually just the task's difficulty).
    Spoiler: Skill Uses sneek peek
    Show
    Craft (MT-IN)
    Uses: You use Craft to make or repair objects.
    Difficulty: Listed in the item's description. It's 2 points easier (minimum 1) to repair something than to make it from scratch.
    Duration: Continuous/Instance. The roll is made to see how well you craft and whether you waste materials doing it. If you fail, you make a mistake partway through and must try again, having wasted some materials.
    Spoiler: Damage Boxes and Effects sneak peek
    Show
    Some of your skills or other game statistics reference damage boxes, particularly injury boxes, wound boxes, harm boxes, distress boxes, trauma boxes, affliction boxes, flux boxes, taint boxes and corruption boxes. A box is a measure of how much pain of one kind or another your character can take before taking real damage. Damage is either physical, mental, or magical: physical damage deals injuries, wounds, harm or death to the target. Mental damage deals distress, trauma, affliction or insanity to the target. Magical damage deals flux, taint, corruption or possession to the target.

    A damage box of any of the nine types is an indication that you can take four points of damage of that type rather than a worse type – it is represented as a box with four sections that can be filled out on your character sheet. Taking four points of damage means that you've suffered an injury, suffered a wound, suffered harm, or so forth for mental and magical damage. If you take damage when all of your boxes of that damage type are checked, you suffer the worst effect for that damage type: death, insanity or possession. For example, if you have three injury boxes, four wound boxes and six harm boxes, the first twelve points of physical damage you take are tantamount to three injuries, the next sixteen are four wounds and the next twenty-four are six harms. You then die if you take any more physical damage, so don't do that.

    Injuries, flux and distress do absolutely nothing in the slightest except for filling up the relevant boxes. They represent minor injuries which impose negligible effects on your abilities, the convulsing but ultimately harmless flow of magical energy, and minor aggravations which pose little threat to your mental well-being unless compounded. Wounds, harm, taint, corruption, trauma and afflictions have more serious and lasting effects. Death, possession and insanity are permanent and all spell the end of a character's career as a player character.
    Spoiler: Abilities and Advancement sneak peek
    Show
    Characters in Dishonour Before Death have the ability to advance by gaining advancement points, or AP. A character generally has some background experience which means that they start with an amount of AP appropriate to who they are. In general, a character who has been thrust into the adventuring life without much relevant experience should have about 100 AP to start. This is enough to increase two statistics to 2, to increase a statistic to 2 and improve 2 skills and have 10 AP left, to increase 5 skills, or to improve your magic to 1 and learn to cast 2 first-level spells, among other possibilities. Those who are already somewhat experienced may have about 200-300 (note that 275 or more allows a character to start with second-level spells known) while seasoned adventurers may have hundreds or even thousands of AP to start (You can start with third-level spells at 800 or fourth-level spells at 2100).

    In general, however, starting AP for a new character should usually be 100, particularly for your first game. This allows players to get a handle on their limited set of abilities (usually, they'll have access to 28 skills, 9 of which have essentially or entirely defensive applications only; they'll also perhaps have a couple of spells or special abilities to work with) rather than jumping straight into analysis paralysis (with 1000 AP, it's entirely reasonable to purchase 20 or more spells or special abilities).

    In general, there are two ways to gain AP – defeating either enemies, or non-combat challenges. Each has their own rules for how many advancement points you gain, but first, it's important to be clear on what “Defeating” means. If you walk into a room and murder everyone in the room, that doesn't count as defeating (even if they are very much defeated in a literal sense). Similarly, you cannot repeatedly climb a ladder again and again for no reason but to earn AP: it doesn't represent a real challenge.

    In order to be considered to have defeated a challenge, combat or otherwise, you need to have a goal. In the process of that goal, something with a difficulty greater than 0 or someone who has the ability to fight you must represent an immediate threat to the completion of that goal. You must then, through whatever means, render that task or enemy non-threatening.

    Example: John and Lana have a goal: to steal an item from a house. They are beset by challenges, such as locked doors which get in their way, and an angry pair of vigilantes. They would earn AP for opening or bashing down the doors, and for killing, incapacitating, routing or even befriending the vigilantes.[...]
    Example: Mycah and Lana are infiltrating a mage's hideout in order to kill him. The mage's guards are extremely vigilant against attackers and represent a threat to the duo's goals. Mycah casts a spell which allows Lana to walk through a wall and stab the mage to death. Because the goal has been completed, everything that was an immediate threat to that goal – such as the guards – is considered defeated.
    Example: John and Fatima are out in the wilds when they are beset by wolves. This immediately gives them a decent goal, even if they originally didn't have one: escape alive. The wolves are obviously a threat to this. They receive full AP for each wolf irrespective of whether they kill the wolves or run away.
    Example: John and Mycah are protecting a magical device from attack by furious Undercity mobs. Every attacker that they kill, incapacitate, rout, or otherwise deal with provides full AP. However, one of the Undercitizens finally breaks the machine, and the remaining attackers flee the vengeful warrior and mage. They still get AP for the attackers they fended off prior, even though they failed in their mission, but any members of the fleeing mob that they blast down won't give them any more AP.
    Example: Lana and Fatima are sneaking past some guards. The guards pose a threat to their goal. Unless they end up fighting the guards, they're a non-combat challenge.
    Example: Mycah and Fatima are on a mission when Fatima takes the chance to eliminate someone she's noted as a wanted criminal. That's a goal, even if it's not the mission they're on, so she earns AP. If Mycah obliterated the criminal with a spell accidentally or on a whim, that would earn them no AP.


    If there's anything else people are curious about, I'm happy to talk about it and talk about the behind-the-scenes reasons behind everything too.
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  2. - Top - End - #32
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    AvatarVecna's Avatar

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    Default Re: Dishonour Before Death!

    Quote Originally Posted by Jormengand View Post
    Roll Durations sneak peek

    A pair of rolls (one by the attacker and one by the defender) might represent one of three things. Which of them is the case will be specified in the description of the statistic or skill used.

    One, you take some action, usually in combat, which will waste time if failed (or have less effect) but you can usually try again next round if the target remains relevant[...] this is known as an Instance roll duration – each roll represents a single instance of an attack or attempt.

    [...]

    Two, you do some kind of action which immediately works or doesn't.[...] This is known as an Immediate roll duration – it determines your success or failure and you can't try again.

    [...]

    Three, you do something with a duration, such as trying to sneak past some guards.[...]This is a Continuous roll duration – you can try once, and your success or failure lasts for the duration of the action.
    I'm trying to think of a difference between Instance and Immediate the way they're described here. I think I've got an example of Immediate from experience with other systems, but I wanted to get it clarified since I'm not sure.

    So, if I'm understanding correctly, Immediate rolls are for when you either know something or don't. I mean, it could maybe apply to "figuring out this person is lying", but that would probably be an Instance roll, since you could try to lie to somebody even after they catch you in a lie, even if it's just harder to attempt to lie to them a second time. But rolling to see whether you know something or not...that sounds like the kind of thing you couldn't just re-attempt. You either know something or you don't, and you couldn't reasonably reroll a knowledge check unless you've had some opportunity to gain new knowledge (memory block taken off, cracked open a book on the subject, talked about it with a friend, etc).

    Presuming that this example of an Immediate roll is appropriate, could you list some other examples?
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  3. - Top - End - #33
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    Default Re: Dishonour Before Death!

    Instance means that you can keep trying as many times as you like, and you will only lose time or suffer whatever the consequences are of failure if you screw up. For example, Athletics' roll duration is:

    "Duration: Instance. If you fail to swim you may start drowning but can try to save yourself next round. If you outrun someone, they may outrun you if they can escape and start running again."

    Focus' duration is:

    "Duration: Instance. You can attempt whatever task you were doing again."

    On the other hand, Heal's duration is:

    "Duration: Immediate. Failure means your efforts do nothing; the creature recovers in the normal time."

    And Disable's is:

    "Duration: Immediate. Either you can disable the mechanism or you cannot."

    As for figuring out that someone's lying, generally reactive skills are practically always Immediate - if you fail a Ranged Defence roll, you don't have another opportunity to mitigate that ranged attack, and if you fail an Insight check, you don't have another opportunity to realise that that person's lying about that one thing.

    "Immediate" doesn't necessarily mean "You can never try this skill again on the same person" so much as "You cannot immediately try this skill again to do the same thing to the same person." You can certainly lie about something else, but Instance would mean that you could keep trying the same lie over and over again until the person believed you.

    Similarly, you can fail a Disable check to open a lock, then try a new one to take the door off its hinges.
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  4. - Top - End - #34
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    Mar 2015

    Default Re: Dishonour Before Death!

    Quote Originally Posted by Jormengand View Post
    Spoiler: Jormengand's Work-O-Meter, not quite as flashy as Rich's
    Show
    Introduction 100%
    - Basic Principles 100%
    - Roll Durations 100%
    (Overall intro: 100%)
    Character Creation 100%
    - Replacing Old Characters100%
    (Overall Chargen: 100%)
    Statistics, Skills and Abilities 100%
    - Using Skills and Statistics 100%
    - Competence Levels and Probability Chart 100%
    - Statistic Descriptions 100%
    - Skill Uses 100%
    (Overall S/S/A: 100%)
    Combat 100%
    - Timing 100%
    - Combat Objectives and Ending Combat 100%
    - Actions in Combat 100%
    - Moving, Positioning and Distance In Combat 100%
    - Conditions in Combat 100%
    - Objects and Features in Combat 100%
    (Overall Combat: 100%)
    Damage Boxes and Effects 100%
    - Causes of Physical Damage 0%
    - Causes of Mental Damage 0%
    - Causes of Magical Damage 0%
    - Damage Tables 25%
    (Overall Damage: 25%)
    Abilities and Advancement 100%
    - Earning and Spending AP 100%
    - Archetypes 0%
    - Basic Statistic and Skill Abilities 100%
    - Passive Abilities 0%
    - Active Abilities 0%
    (Overall Abilities and Advancement: 50%)
    Equipment and Wealth 0%
    - Wealth and Money 0%
    - Weapons 0%
    - Armour and Shields 0%
    - Tools 0%
    - Miscellaneous Equipment 0%
    - Magic Items 0%
    (Overall Equipment and Wealth: 0%)
    Magic 100%
    Spell List 100%
    - Unleashed Magic 10%
    - Task Magic 5%
    - Finesse Magic 0%
    - Blood Magic 10%
    - Ritual Magic 0%
    - Balance Magic 0%
    - Volatile Magic 5%
    - Channelled Magic 0%
    - Spells with Multiple Drawbacks 5%
    (Overall Spell List: 13.5%)
    Monsters 0%
    Character Sheet 50%
    (Overall Dishonour Before Death: 51%)
    Is it bad that I am more impressed by the detail and organization of your to-do list than anything about the system itself so far? Not that the system itself has been too shabby, but I am working on my own system and my to-do list is a vague cloud of things I want to add or fix.

  5. - Top - End - #35
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    Default Re: Dishonour Before Death!

    Quote Originally Posted by Cluedrew View Post
    Is it bad that I am more impressed by the detail and organization of your to-do list than anything about the system itself so far? Not that the system itself has been too shabby, but I am working on my own system and my to-do list is a vague cloud of things I want to add or fix.
    It's really just the contents section with a bunch of percentages strapped to it. But I'm glad you like it, if a little perplexed that my organisational skills are what you love about DBD.

    Unfortunately, due to writer's block (which I can no longer think of as anything other than a cuboid feline) and depression and actually trying to get a job, I've not made much impact on those percentages apart from nudging a few of the spell list ones. If you like hilariously powerful fourth-level spells, however, I have some good news.

    Spoiler: Kinetic Bombardment sneak peek
    Show
    Kinetic Bombardment
    Type: Channelled/Ritual/Volatile 4
    Difficulty: 15 (see text)
    Target: Ten locations within 2 kilometres
    Duration: 2 hours
    General Effect: Every 12 minutes, a magical projectile falls from orbit and strikes one of the locations you chose, or a location near it. Any creature or object struck directly by the projectile takes 15d6 points of physical piercing damage. Every creature and object within 10 metres takes 5d6 points of physical fire damage, and every creature and object within 100 metres takes 10d6 points of physical laceration damage.
    Full Effect: The projectile hits the location targeted.
    Partial Effect: The projectile misses by 100 metres for every single point by which you failed. It might easily land outside the spell's range. Randomly determine the direction (you can use 60*(d6-1)+10*(d6-1) as a number of degrees clockwise from a given direction, or use a spinner).
    Drawback: Implicit, plus you must spend two hours casting before the spell even begins and another two to get the full use out of it as above.
    Last edited by Jormengand; 2018-02-22 at 01:28 PM.
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