Saturday, June 12, 2010

Remedies to D20

As anyone who has read this blog more than twice probably knows, I don't like d20. It is all I played for three or four solid years, and those years left me with no desire to return to it.


Recently I found a pair of "mods" that remedy all the problems I have with the game.

Firstly, I picked up True20. I found it used and in totally pristine condition for ten bucks, and I bought it for a friend who had expressed some interest in it. I came to find out he already ordered it online, so I decided to keep it.
I like True20 so far. It addresses a number of issues I had with 3.5, the most prominent being the hot mess of multiclassing, dipping, prestige classes, and other related bullshit. Character classes are reduced to broad categories (the combat guy, the magic/powers guy, the skill guy). The interesting thing is that the D&D classes are there, if you want to build according to the 3.5 diagram for the class. I'm still picking through combat, particularly in hopes that it makes special maneuvers (grapple, anyone?) not make me want to gouge my own eyes out.

Secondly, I discovered E6 through one of the blogs on my blog roll. The short version: E6 is 3.5 that caps at 6th level. It's low magic. It rewrites the assumption that everything in WotC D&D is a balanced, level-appropriate encounter meant to exhaust only X% of your total resources. Evan a die-hard anti-d20 friend of mine expressed excitement at the idea of E6. My wife finds it interesting as well. I think this is what I was trying to do with D&D 3.5 by just making magic and treasure scarce. (That route doesn't really work, by the way.)

I've been thinking on a new campaign, anyway. Perhaps it might be time to experiment with one of these.


  1. True20 + E6 sounds like a d20 peeve-buster alright.

    Hmmm... add in point based/XP-costed* attributes with the anime20 SRD and I think you've got everything you could want and nothing you don't.

    *"XP needed for Level Y = (Level Y-1) x 1,000"... at 5 character points per level, you could dismiss levels except as a means of 'costing' character points. 1 CP would cost (Current Level) x 200 XP ... I think ;) ... players could just spend the XP as they earned them, banking only if they needed to build up CP for something expensive like Metamorphosis or Teleport.

  2. Sounds good to me.

    When do we play the same set of characters that slew the Medusa?
    --I don't care which system...


  3. E6 looks like an interesting way to play 3E, thanks for the link!

  4. E6 is probably my favorite d20 mod. Either that or Microlite d20.