Wednesday, November 18, 2020

OSE: Progress

 Tonight was a resounding success for the players.

One player decided to shelve his druid and bring out his gnome. (I'll be writing a separate post about why druids in OSE are fuckin' terrible) They hired three fighters and kitted them out in plate mail, shields, spears, and bows. The players were tired of mucking about as a bunch of broke, perpetually first level scrubs. It was time to kill the minotaur or die. 

A lot could've gone wrong, but luck was with the players. They navigated the maze much better. They no longer had lots of fire beetles or stirges to deal with. The minotaur failed two saving throws, both against phantasmal force and darkness. (Courtesy of the gnome and the drow, respectively.) The party rolled much better for missile fire. The magic-user came prepped with magic missile instead of sleep. 

In the aftermath, the party was able to recover the belongings of their slain cleric compatriot and two retainers. (Their remains had, for the most part, been eaten.) The assassin found the secret door to the minotaur's treasure hoard. A couple of crowbars and some caution avoided the poisoned needle in chest #1. 

The party dismissed the three fighters after paying them, but kept their hired thief on retainer. The gnome spent money on better equipment. The magic-user gained a level, met another of his kind, and negotiated a spell swap, gaining charm person and light in the process. The drow has the magic plate mail and the healing staff after the party had the magic loot identified by a wise man. The assassin compensated for her low charisma by buying rounds of honey mead and eavesdropping on adventurers. 

So now we've got another 2nd level character, the assassin is nearly 3rd, and the gnome is off to a decent start. The players are contemplating swapping the druid and drow out for wilderness and underground adventures, respectively. Both in and out of character, they are debating raiding the caves again or moving on to other adventures. 

Good stuff. 


  1. Sounds like a whopper of a game session. (My play-by-post game, meanwhile—which I began nearly two weeks ago!—has only just just reached round 1 of its first combat encounter…)

    It looks like you're playing OSE + Advanced Fantasy. How do the OSE versions of the 1e classes stack up against Advanced Labyrinth Lord (or actual AD&D)?

    1. I'm not actually familiar with the Advanced LL options, I only ever played regular LL.

      As for OSE Advanced Genre vs. AD&D, the overall power level and complexity has been "BXified." Some examples:

      -Weird hybrid classes like bard and thief-acrobat (now just acrobat) are playable from 1st level

      -Weird little asynchronous elements and idiosyncrasies are removed: rangers don't start with 2 hit die for no reason and they don't use magic-user spells and weirdly specific magic items. Assassins don't have an entire section of rules for how they can be uniquely targeted by law enforcement. The knight (rework of the cavalier) doesn't have special rules for using a shield that don't apply to how shields otherwise work, etc.

      I'd say OSE just boils the class down and tries to make the mechanical bits similar to how the core classes work instead of a bunch of one-off/case-by-case basis approaches.

    2. Well that does sound interesting. ALL also BXified the AD&D materials, but it generally preserved quirks and stayed faithful where possible, only simplifying what it needed to.

  2. These kind of successes can really galvanize a party. Of course, they can also lead to over-confidence (and swift death)...hopefully, they won't fall into that trap just when they've started rolling!

    [2nd level PCs are still immensely vulnerable to, say, owl bears or packs of zombies...just zombies! Not even ghouls!]

    I've only read through the basic (B/X) OSE tome, so I don't know how they handle the AD&D expansions. Would love to hear how/why druids are terrible in OSE, because they're fairly beefy in 1E.

    1. I need to talk to the druid's player one more time to make sure I've also got his take on the class.

    2. I should also mention I've been mighty curious how some of your Complete B/X Adventurer classes would fit into OSE, but given that the game has 30 official classes right now, I think I will hold off a bit before I throw more ingredients into an overfull pot.