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Alternate dice mechanic

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  • Jon Lang
    I like ICONS differential dice rolling convention. However, I d like to suggest an alternative. This version may well end up being easier to use for some,
    Message 1 of 2 , Nov 3, 2010
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      I like ICONS' "differential dice" rolling convention. However, I'd
      like to suggest an alternative. This version may well end up being
      easier to use for some, though explaining it is a bit more involved:
      deisgnate one die as good and the other as bad, and roll them; then
      toss out the bigger number. If you're left with the good die, apply
      it to whatever trait you're checking as a bonus; but if you're left
      with the bad die, apply it as a penalty. If you get a tie, toss out
      both dice.

      The probability distribution for this "opposed dice" method is exactly
      the same as for the "differential dice" method that ICONS normally
      uses. For the most part, deciding whether you want to use
      differential dice or opposed dice depends on which you feel more
      comfortable doing: subtracting one number from another (differential),
      or picking between two numbers (opposed).

      There is, however, a more radical optional rule that complements the
      "opposed dice" method quite nicely: namely, another way to handle
      Determined Effort: instead of the current method of spending
      Determination for "automatic" successes, you replace the normal die
      roll with "aligned dice". This works exactly like opposed dice,
      except that both dice are good and you still only toss one out if you
      get a tie. The result is always a bonus to your trait, ranging from +1
      to +6 and averaging between +2 and +3. If that isn't enough to get
      the desired outcome, spend another Determination to reroll the dice
      and try for a better bonus. You can do this as often as you like, as
      long as you have Determination to spare.

      This method is radically different from the normal Determined Effort
      rules: in the normal rules, you might get a really bad roll and have
      to spend as many as three points of Determination to upgrade a -5 roll
      to a +1 roll; using the aligned dice option, a single point of
      Determination will guarantee that the worst you will do will be a +1
      to your trait. OTOH, the normal method can also give you an
      arbitrarily high bonus; no matter how difficult the task before you,
      nor how unsuited you are to the task, y6ou can always achieve whatever
      level of success you want if you have enough Determination. With the
      "aligned dice" alternative, the best you can manage is a +6 bonus.

      A slightly more complex variation on the "aligned dice" concept is to
      allow them to explode on doubles: if both dice are the same, set
      asidew one of the dice as a bonus; and then roll two more dice for
      another bonus, cumulative with the first. Keep doing this as long as
      you keep getting doubles. As before, you can spend a point of
      Determination to try again if you don't like the result.

      Thoughts?

      --
      Jonathan "Dataweaver" Lang
    • Soylent Green
      I think the first alternatie dice idea might be good for people who have not been exposed to Fate or FUDGE before. However as Fate is gaining popularity
      Message 2 of 2 , Nov 4, 2010
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        I think the first alternatie dice idea might be good for people who have not been exposed to Fate or FUDGE before.
        However as Fate is gaining popularity (relatively speaking), overally you are more likely to find people already used to the d6-d6 concept.
         
        And that is one key element of game design, the sooner people get used to a mechanic, the sooner it fades into the background.
         

         

        To: icons-rpg@yahoogroups.com
        From: dataweaver@...
        Date: Wed, 3 Nov 2010 16:27:53 -0700
        Subject: [icons-rpg] Alternate dice mechanic

         
        I like ICONS' "differential dice" rolling convention. However, I'd
        like to suggest an alternative. This version may well end up being
        easier to use for some, though explaining it is a bit more involved:
        deisgnate one die as good and the other as bad, and roll them; then
        toss out the bigger number. If you're left with the good die, apply
        it to whatever trait you're checking as a bonus; but if you're left
        with the bad die, apply it as a penalty. If you get a tie, toss out
        both dice.

        The probability distribution for this "opposed dice" method is exactly
        the same as for the "differential dice" method that ICONS normally
        uses. For the most part, deciding whether you want to use
        differential dice or opposed dice depends on which you feel more
        comfortable doing: subtracting one number from another (differential),
        or picking between two numbers (opposed).

        There is, however, a more radical optional rule that complements the
        "opposed dice" method quite nicely: namely, another way to handle
        Determined Effort: instead of the current method of spending
        Determination for "automatic" successes, you replace the normal die
        roll with "aligned dice". This works exactly like opposed dice,
        except that both dice are good and you still only toss one out if you
        get a tie. The result is always a bonus to your trait, ranging from +1
        to +6 and averaging between +2 and +3. If that isn't enough to get
        the desired outcome, spend another Determination to reroll the dice
        and try for a better bonus. You can do this as often as you like, as
        long as you have Determination to spare.

        This method is radically different from the normal Determined Effort
        rules: in the normal rules, you might get a really bad roll and have
        to spend as many as three points of Determination to upgrade a -5 roll
        to a +1 roll; using the aligned dice option, a single point of
        Determination will guarantee that the worst you will do will be a +1
        to your trait. OTOH, the normal method can also give you an
        arbitrarily high bonus; no matter how difficult the task before you,
        nor how unsuited you are to the task, y6ou can always achieve whatever
        level of success you want if you have enough Determination. With the
        "aligned dice" alternative, the best you can manage is a +6 bonus.

        A slightly more complex variation on the "aligned dice" concept is to
        allow them to explode on doubles: if both dice are the same, set
        asidew one of the dice as a bonus; and then roll two more dice for
        another bonus, cumulative with the first. Keep doing this as long as
        you keep getting doubles. As before, you can spend a point of
        Determination to try again if you don't like the result.

        Thoughts?

        --
        Jonathan "Dataweaver" Lang

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