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Wilderlands Cool Rules of the Week; UPDATE 3/3/08 
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Ulthal

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Well, it's not going to get posted tonight. It will be finished tonight, and should be up sometime tomorrow. As usual, it has grown a bit more complex than was originally planned...

Can you say, "Warrior-Mages of the Wilderlands"?
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Thu Mar 13, 2008 12:38 am
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Renegade Mage
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Sounds like we're in for the usual level of 'awesomeness' then!
M
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Thu Mar 13, 2008 1:26 am
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Sounds sweet. A big, bad, bag of sweetness. Looking forward to this and the next Wilderlands release.

-O
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Thu Mar 13, 2008 1:28 am
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Ulthal

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The Warrior-Mages article is done and is in layout, should be ready to post early tomorrow. 6 1/2 pages, including the fighter/wizard multi-class, three warrior-mage traditions (elven spear or sword-mage, Karakhan nine-ring sword-mage, and elven bow-mage), 19 new warrior-mage special abilities, and 14 new warrior-mage spells.

This article has a bit of an anime/wuxia-style theme going, rather than sword & sorcery style...
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Thu Mar 13, 2008 7:44 pm
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Ulthal

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The new Cool Rule of the Week is now on the website. This Cool Rule is for this week and next week; the Cool Rule of the Week will return on March 24. Enjoy!
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Fri Mar 14, 2008 4:18 am
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AWESOME!

I've downloaded... I'm printing it as I type this... and plan on reading it over during breakfast.

Thanks James!

M

EDIT: Um... a 7-sided die for HD? Guess I'll have to use a d8 with a re-roll on an 8. Or I'll be generous and have them roll 1d6+1

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Fri Mar 14, 2008 11:34 am
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Lunch-time reading material. Nice.

-O
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Fri Mar 14, 2008 1:07 pm
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Well, I've read it and I like the concept. As a multi-class concept, this has potential and with the way I tend to do multi-classing, this would fit it rather nicely. That said, it'll likely be designated as a 'restricted-class' -- at least at first. By restricted, I mean it won't be normally available to players. However between the first release and this one, I'm certainly going to make a villain for the players to go toe-to-toe with:

A true 'sword-sorcerer'; a Moshijian Warrior Mage who's in a pact with a powerful demon! Thanks for the inspiration for that one.

At first, even though good, I was a bit worried at all the powers/abilities.

However two important things made the difference for me (and might for other people reading this):

One is that the CK decides when these powers might be given which means a player can't expect one upon reaching a certain level. Secondly, having to expend a spell to use a given ability is perfectly fine with me since this just means abilities are just like very versatile spells.

If I find that it's still a bit too powerful, the easy way around it is to expend additional XP to buy said abilities ... much like the Secondary Skill system presented in Yggsburgh.

With the way I'm introducing the is my campaign (with aforementioned villain), it'll also be established that this is new... and rare... and thus limited (ergo restricted) which I'm sure a couple of my players will love. The new spells alone will be fun enough!

Thanks again for this effort James! At this point I owe you a couple of donations! Keep up the fantastic work!

M
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Fri Mar 14, 2008 1:45 pm
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Ulthal

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Quote:
moriarty777 wrote:
EDIT: Um... a 7-sided die for HD? Guess I'll have to use a d8 with a re-roll on an 8. Or I'll be generous and have them roll 1d6+1



Actually, Gamescience has seven-sided dice available. You can see them at Noble Knight Games.
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Fri Mar 14, 2008 2:04 pm
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Battle Stag
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I got a pair of these dice some 10 years ago, and still have not needed to use them for anything. Plus, even for Game science I think the perfectly random aspects of the physics on this die is off.

But this would be the first time I've seen a souce use the d7. Bravo.

-O
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Fri Mar 14, 2008 2:15 pm
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Ulthal

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Quote:
moriarty777 wrote:
At first, even though good, I was a bit worried at all the powers/abilities. However two important things made the difference for me (and might for other people reading this):

One is that the CK decides when these powers might be given which means a player can't expect one upon reaching a certain level. Secondly, having to expend a spell to use a given ability is perfectly fine with me since this just means abilities are just like very versatile spells.

If I find that it's still a bit too powerful, the easy way around it is to expend additional XP to buy said abilities ... much like the Secondary Skill system presented in Yggsburgh.



Indeed, inclusion of any materials presented in the Journal or in the Cool Rules of the Week are entirely at the discretion of the judge. I've tried to make the methodology of characters gaining special abilities as open-ended as possible, so that the judge can use whatever system she wants with minimal effort. XP requirements, time training, level requirements... all of these are at the discretion of the judge, to be based on the needs of her campaign.

Personally, I generally require several things for a character to gain a new special ability:

1) He must find a mentor who already has the ability. He must convince this mentor to spend time training him in the new special ability, either by becoming his ally, performing services or duties, cold hard cash, or other methods.

2) The character spends a full level in training, in between adventures. First, the time in training is at a minimum of one week per level to be gained. Second, training takes place from the point of XP completion at the level begun to the equivalent point of XP completion of the next level gained, i.e., if the character starts training midway between 2nd and 3rd level, training is not complete until midway between 3rd and 4th level. This is based on percentage of XP. If, somehow, the character does not have enough time in training by the time the new level is gained, he must still train with his mentor of the full amount of time (usually as "downtime") to complete his training and gain the new ability. It behooves the character to complete this training, as he cannot start learning another special ability till he completes training for this one, or abandons this one in favor of another special ability (and re-starts the XP calculation).

It should not be easy to gain a special ability. Unlike feats in d20, these are not automatically gained as one rises in levels; one must earn the special ability, much like a treasure or other thing of value, through play in the campaign.
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Fri Mar 14, 2008 2:17 pm
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Battle Stag
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Sounds like good material for an article about WoHF and alternate classes, cool rules, etc.

-O
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Fri Mar 14, 2008 2:18 pm
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Quote:
Omote wrote:
I got a pair of these dice some 10 years ago, and still have not needed to use them for anything. Plus, even for Game science I think the perfectly random aspects of the physics on this die is off.



I took a look at the link that James provided. I'm inclined to agree that the physics might not be perfect. Kinda cool... but I almost ashamed to admit that it doesn't look like *real* dice!
However, I'm sure I've seen a 14 sided dice which duplicated the 1-7 range on the dice twice. I've been thinking of acquiring 'odder' dice ever since I had to track down and replace that d30 I had to experiment with the Cleaver the Pit rules.

M

EDIT - DOH! Can't find them... found regular d14 instead.
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Fri Mar 14, 2008 2:22 pm
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Yeah, d14s are out there. Who makes them? Where did you find them?

-O
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Fri Mar 14, 2008 2:32 pm
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Skobbit

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Quote:
Omote wrote:
Yeah, d14s are out there. Who makes them? Where did you find them?



I think they are also gamescience dice. I just bought 1 of each strange number from goodman-games dot com/store dot php (Can't use a URL until I get 5 posts.)

Click on Dice after navigating there.

E.


Fri Mar 14, 2008 3:31 pm
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Battle Stag
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Thanks ludyee!

-O
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Fri Mar 14, 2008 3:48 pm
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Mogrl

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Quote:
jamesmishler wrote:
Indeed, inclusion of any materials presented in the Journal or in the Cool Rules of the Week are entirely at the discretion of the judge. I've tried to make the methodology of characters gaining special abilities as open-ended as possible, so that the judge can use whatever system she wants with minimal effort. XP requirements, time training, level requirements... all of these are at the discretion of the judge, to be based on the needs of her campaign.

Personally, I generally require several things for a character to gain a new special ability:

1) He must find a mentor who already has the ability. He must convince this mentor to spend time training him in the new special ability, either by becoming his ally, performing services or duties, cold hard cash, or other methods.

2) The character spends a full level in training, in between adventures. First, the time in training is at a minimum of one week per level to be gained. Second, training takes place from the point of XP completion at the level begun to the equivalent point of XP completion of the next level gained, i.e., if the character starts training midway between 2nd and 3rd level, training is not complete until midway between 3rd and 4th level. This is based on percentage of XP. If, somehow, the character does not have enough time in training by the time the new level is gained, he must still train with his mentor of the full amount of time (usually as "downtime") to complete his training and gain the new ability. It behooves the character to complete this training, as he cannot start learning another special ability till he completes training for this one, or abandons this one in favor of another special ability (and re-starts the XP calculation).

It should not be easy to gain a special ability. Unlike feats in d20, these are not automatically gained as one rises in levels; one must earn the special ability, much like a treasure or other thing of value, through play in the campaign.



Just to throw more ideas into the pot, there is the way I have players learn new "powers".

Have them make a SIEGE check to use the "power" they wish to use. I usually have the CL be the difficulty of their opponents. Once they succeed

"X" number of times they have mastered it.

In the case of several of the powers you have come up with I would have them find a teacher to show them the basics, then have them make SIEGE checks in play to try and learn/master it "under fire".

Or I give them a year of downtime and have them make stat checks (whatever is most relevant to what they are trying to learn to do), I usually use this rule for training to increase their stats.

For example: To increase their STR from 12 to 13 is a TN13, and costs 100 gp per month the training lasts. Each failed roll gives a cumulative +1 bonus to the next roll.

Example: They roll of 5 for the first month, failure. So the next roll is +1 and they roll and 11, for a total of 12. Soooo close. Then the next month they roll with a +2 bonus and roll a 15 (+2), success!!

So they trained to increase their STR from 12 to 13 in 3 months at a cost of 300 gold.

So just change this "guideline" around to accomodate training for any kind of power/ability/etc....
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Fri Mar 14, 2008 4:32 pm
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Hlobane Orc

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How do I roll a d7?
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Fri Mar 14, 2008 8:00 pm
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Ulthal

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Quote:
Storm Queen wrote:
How do I roll a d7?


Basic Method: Buy a seven-sided die from your friendly local game store; if they don't have it, you can have them order it. It is made by Gamescience (Lou Zocchi's company). You can also sometimes get them on eBay, though right now only a seller in the UK has them...
Alternate Method: 1d8 and roll 8's over
Weird Method: Instead, alternate the warrior-mages hit dice every other level. 1d8 at 1st, 1d6 at 2nd, 1d8 at 3rd, and so on, until at 10th level she has 5d6+5d8.
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Fri Mar 14, 2008 8:44 pm
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Maukling
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Quote:
Storm Queen wrote:
How do I roll a d7?



Roll 2d4 and subtract one from the result.
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Fri Mar 14, 2008 9:04 pm
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Mogrl

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Except that two dice have an average, whereas a single one does not. That means the 2d4-1 will tend to give more uniform results than 1d7 would, despite having the same number range. Its because getting a 7 on 2d4 is 1:16 (roll of 4 on both dice) as opposed to 1:7 on just the d7, meaning you'd expect to get max on d7 twice as often... but, whatever.


Fri Mar 14, 2008 9:12 pm
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Maukling
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Quote:
serleran wrote:
Except that two dice have an average, whereas a single one does not. That means the 2d4-1 will tend to give more uniform results than 1d7 would, despite having the same number range. Its because getting a 7 on 2d4 is 1:16 (roll of 4 on both dice) as opposed to 1:7 on just the d7, meaning you'd expect to get max on d7 twice as often... but, whatever.



So? The question was "How do you roll a d7"

No one said anything about "How do you roll fairly on a d7"
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Fri Mar 14, 2008 10:15 pm
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Mogrl

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Oh yeah. Sorry.


Fri Mar 14, 2008 11:01 pm
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Ulthal

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Hit die type aside, what does everyone think of it? Is it balanced? Are the special abilities too much? Is this the kind of thing you want to see, "adapted multi-classes" or "themed core classes" rather than "new" classes?

Feedback helps. If it's good, let me know. If it sucks, let me know. In either case, let me know why... and how I can improve the next article! Thanks!
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Sat Mar 15, 2008 7:54 pm
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Ungern
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Looks good to me
I'm not sure how well balanced it is, but for me balance in not a big issue. When I start my campaign up in the next 2 to 3 weeks I'll probably only have 3 players in the mix, so versatility and survivability is what i'm looking for.

Ah heck, balance was never a main concern in AD&D either


Sun Mar 16, 2008 1:20 am
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Lore Drake

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Quote:
serleran wrote:
Except that two dice have an average, whereas a single one does not. That means the 2d4-1 will tend to give more uniform results than 1d7 would, despite having the same number range. Its because getting a 7 on 2d4 is 1:16 (roll of 4 on both dice) as opposed to 1:7 on just the d7, meaning you'd expect to get max on d7 twice as often... but, whatever.



When you start cumulating hit dice across levels, the difference between summing a lot of 2d4-1 and summing a lot of d7s becomes negligible (central limit theorem).

So, both you and Peter are "correct"
(oh, and as a technical point, 2d4-1 gives LESS uniform results than 1d7)


Mon Mar 17, 2008 8:39 am
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Mist Elf

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Quote:
jamesmishler wrote:
Basic Method: Buy a seven-sided die from your friendly local game store; if they don't have it, you can have them order it. It is made by Gamescience (Lou Zocchi's company). You can also sometimes get them on eBay, though right now only a seller in the UK has them...
Alternate Method: 1d8 and roll 8's over
Weird Method: Instead, alternate the warrior-mages hit dice every other level. 1d8 at 1st, 1d6 at 2nd, 1d8 at 3rd, and so on, until at 10th level she has 5d6+5d8.



How about Weird Method II: Roll 2d6 ("number die" + "control die.")

If control die = 1-3, read the number die as written.

If control die = 4-6, add 1 to result of number die.


Mon Mar 17, 2008 5:46 pm
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So what... I can never get a result of 4?! Some people like 4HP per level.
-O
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Tue Mar 18, 2008 1:58 am
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Skobbit

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Quote:
Omote wrote:
So what... I can never get a result of 4?! Some people like 4HP per level.
-O



Huh? Number die = 4 & control die = 1-3 results in 4 I believe.


Tue Mar 18, 2008 3:30 pm
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Yes, I initially misunderstood the process. I'm OK now. Everything is going to be just fine. Fine.

-O
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Tue Mar 18, 2008 4:16 pm
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