Alloy Primer: Revisions

I did some testing and I found that I thought the main task resolution for Alloy was a bit dry. In other words, it was tried and true but there weren’t as many moments where everyone might crowd around the table to see the results of a single critical roll. So I revised it at the 11th hour, and am now incorporating that into my rules draft. For the most part costs have changed, but statistics have not. This means that I expect not to have to redo statistics endlessly, so I’m not pushed back from releasing things quite as badly as I could be with a more total overhaul.

To give you an idea of the most basic change, before a character with Strength 3 and Brawling 2 would roll 5D6*, and hope for 5s or better on each of them to get enough successes to meet his opponent’s Parry pool. Now, this would be 3 Dice from Strength and 1 Die from Brawling, (because Rank 1 Brawling gives you a benefit instead of dice), but the goal number is now 4 for all rolls. Now, I’m sure I hear some of you wondering how that is more exciting? Well by itself it isn’t, but 6s and 1s do different things now. If you roll a 1 you reroll it and see if it fails again. If you confirm your failure it eats a success. If you roll a 6 on a trained skill test (you have the skill), you add a die which may succeed. Sorry explosion fans, you only add dice to the pool the one time, but 6s sure look nice if you manage them on your new dice.

* I mistakenly put this as 3D6 when I first wrote this post.

Lastly, Augmented is a status which now allows you to reroll your lowest die result, and Diminished is a status which forces you to reroll your highest success. Both of these steps happen last. Rules of 1s and 6s go first, then Augmentation/Diminishment. If you have both a 1 and a 6 their special effects are canceled out on a 1:1 basis, and you cannot be both Augmented and Diminished. Even though their effects aren’t in direct conflict they are also canceled out rather than both rolled. I’m trying to eliminate some needless chaos here.

I decreased the number of skill ranks, so skills have to cost more. However, Core Skills are now more potent because rank 1 is more expensive than it used to be, so their cost may go up. I’m busy updating text in task resolution right now, so I’ll make a final decision about that when I get there.

I’ve also simplified the list of maneuvers, combining some and made certain ones into stunts. I felt that you should know what the basic maneuvers do and what their TNs and AC costs are because there is a short list of them, and they are simple. Honestly the most confusing ones are grab and grapple, and those are often the cause of a rules reference in any system, although I feel my versions aren’t overly complicated. The ones which are now stunts, disarm, and trip etc. you’d probably want to look up in any game system unless you memorized them.

When I finish with the rewrite, I’ll reformat a download. I won’t be updating the posts as well, so look forward to that PDF.

About Byron D. Molix

I am an information technology professional in Missouri. I've been an avid fan of fantasy and science fiction novels, comic books, pen and paper role-playing games, computer games and console video games for the last two decades. My dream would be to one day make a comfortable living while having the time to pursue writing (novels, rpgs, etc.) as a full-time hobby.

Posted on August 8, 2015, in Alloy, Editorial, Gaming and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. So, before the changes, a character with Strength 3 and Brawling 2 had to roll 5 or higher on their 3D6. Is the higher TN the result of those two character values? I only ask because the follow-up example had a characted with Strength 3 and Brawling 2 needing to roll 4 or higher on 4D6. So, from those examples it appears that becoming better at a skill increases the difficulty of achieving a goal. I’ve played a lot of D&D and Champions (Hero System), and usually increasing one’s prowess in a skill makes things easier. Am I simply confusing different aspects of your game? 😛

    • I made a typo. And no it’s more straightforward than doing a comparison before rolling. Before, the goal on each die to achieve a single success was 5 (or 2 results out of 6). If you had a higher skill rank this margin would widen by 1 or 2 (depending on how much skill you have) but bonus dice were capped at +2D.

      Now, you always want to see a 4 or better on each Die. I don’t have a handy probability chart with me, but basically it’s more advantageous to roll less dice but look for a wider margin to determine success than to roll twice as many dice because the default percentage per die is 50% and 33% respectively. The change also gives you more bonus dice when you increase a skill to a high rank (whereas before the main benefit was lowering the goal).

      Having the success be 4 or higher at all times streamlines it, and makes the curve of expectation more predictable (until you add in the Rule of 1s, the Rule of 6s, Augmentation and Diminishment) in that you should get on average, half as many successes as the pool for any test. It’s how I handle automatic successes for out of combat tests. (I did this before as well, giving the player the benefit of the doubt even though the math might be against them).

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