Thursday, June 21, 2012

Hacking Fallout

I have played Fallout 3 a lot. I love the game. I love the setting and atmosphere. Quests are generally interesting. Exploring the world is fun. Collecting items and scrap has a new meaning when you sell those to vendors to get more items to survive.

I love Fallout 3.

I like playing it so much I constantly was thinking while playing how much I'd like to play it as a tabletop roleplaying game. There are some Fallout fan-made rpg's already and there are other post-apocalyptic games. But I wanted to play Fallout 3.

My first sketch was basically translating Fallout 3 into a p&p system. It worked ok when I tweaked some aspects of the Fallout 3 "rules" into more playable form. It was ok but there was so much work to do to build a new system. So I forgot it.

But playing Fallout 3 I kept thinking about Fallout-ish p&p rpg. Then I started my current project I have already almost written.

I took something from Fallout 3 and started to use D20 system as a basic. This is what I got:

Character creation is familiar. Roll 3d6 in a row (alternatives are 3d6 swap two and 4d6, drop lowest, assign as you like). I just renamed Dexterity to Agility and replaced Wisdom with Perception.

Other characteristics like Hit points, Carry Capacity etc. are based on attributes.

Skill system is different. Skills are in percentile, but every 10% is +1 to d20 roll. So you have d20 mechanics with percentile skills. Point is you share points to skills at character creation and leveling up. And by reading skill books of course. So +1% can get you +1 to roll if you are at x9 currently. Small touch you could do with just giving +1's and so on, but I wanted to include the Fallout 0-100 skill scale.

Carry Capacity I ripped from Lamentations of the Flame Princess. Instead of calculating every little stone in your inventory you got three categories of items: unencumbering, normal and heavy. The weight/size of item affects how many you can carry.

Combat is a bit like Dungeonslayers. You roll d20 + skill + damage + modifiers (Attack Value or AV) against d20 + defense + armor + modifiers (Defense Value or DV). The difference of results is damage. So if AV is 25 and DV is 15 target suffers 10 points of damage (25-15=10).

Weapons have damage x/dx. Solid number what basically is bonus to attack roll and dice to roll to attack. So with a weapon 2/d6 you add +2 and d6 result to your d20+skill+modifiers.

I think the system is simple and easy.

There are also saves for radiation, explosives, poison, enviromental hazards etc. what work similarly to d20 games.

Armor are simply +x to DV.

Items do break and they need to be repaired. That is one big point of Fallout 3. Stuff breaks. But I haven't included the penalty to damage and armor value depending on condition. At the moment it feels a bit too complicated for me.

There are also some advanced combat rules like shooting enemies behind a cover, sneak attacks, attacking from a back etc. little tweaks. Not too complicated though.

Explosive rules are something I have written but am not sure are they satisfying. The area-of-effect and undirect fire makes them different from shooting guns.

This far I am quite happy with this. Need to write (copy-paste) stuff to make it whole and then start to play it and tweak the rules if I am not happy with them. Testing is they key to master this. There are few problems I already know but I won't fix them before testing them in action. Sometimes it is waste of time to write theory without experience.

Anyways, it can be found here (not ready yet):

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