Thursday, September 30, 2021

Useless Crabbin' in 3 Parts

Canto 1 

 Goddamn, I miss Wizardawn. It was so easy to generate maps, the maps were exactly what I wanted, and it was free. I tried to download and run my own Wizardawn server, but I couldn't get it to work on my shitbox of a laptop. (I am also not super great with computers beyond basic user stuff.) When I was running OSE, I found some online mappers that were okay, but they didn't do it for me the way Wizardawn did. I could break down and pay for Hexographer, (or I guess it's called Worldographer now?) but then I have to do all the work... I much prefer being handed a blank map and letting my imagination fill in what it is. 

Canto 2 

Why did I never notice how awful experience points are in B/X as a youngster? (Actually it was Cyclopedia/BECMI but whatever) Like... an orc has a pretty even chance of murdering a 1st level character of any class, but an orc is worth a paltry 10 xp. Even if you kill one by yourself... I mean, a fighter has to kill 200 of those motherfuckers to gain a level. While the word 'round the campfire is that 75% of experience comes from treasure, my experience is that it's more like 95%.  

I'm guessing I didn't notice because e 1.) I was ten years old and 2.) We moved on pretty quickly to AD&D 2nd edition and that's where most of my D&D experience was in my formative years. 

Paging JB, Paging Doctor JB to the Operating Room.  

Canto 3 

6th edition is a thing? Or is it 5.5? Fuck, I don't know. If it's backwards compatible I guess that's chill. 


  1. Re Canto 2: Hell yes, I noticed. The impossibly stingy way XP was awarded for defeating enemies made it effectively mandatory to use the idiotic "gold = XP" rules if you ever wanted anyone to level up. Or you had to house rule things so you got about 10-20 times as much for winning and extra XP for non-combat success like handling traps or negotiating well - at which point you could drop the amount of treasure you had to hand out for levelling to sane amounts.

    Re Canto 3: It's not due till 2024, so more like potentially a thing. Can't get fussed about it personally, I stopped playing "official" D&D when 5th dropped.

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  3. Hey, man, the doctor is IN and I have the CURE for your blues: it's first edition AD&D y'all.
    ; )

    Here's why:
    - More x.p. for monsters
    - Awarding x.p. for magic items
    - Appropriate drains on PC coffers (so their cups don't overflow, as in B/X)
    - Higher survival rates even at low levels thanks to increased hit die size, increased clerical power, and the appearance of hit point "buffer zones" (negative HPs).

    ALSO: if you still need cheering, check out Prince of Nothing's recent dungeon contest:

    The review of the "winners" entries are well worth peeping, stealing from. My own entry did NOT make the winner circle (it was a slovenly effort by comparison) but still fun:

    Giddyup, man! Good stuffs on the horizon (and, no, not 6E. That's just another chance to set your money on fire for WotC. Fuck that noise!)!
    : )

    1. Can I get the generic brand medicine? (OSRIC) I usually get the generic brand with my RL medicine, so...

    2. I’m probably going to need to check out OSRIC (you’re the second person to bring it up with me the last week or so). Unfortunately I can’t really speak to its effectiveness as a cure…though I’ve heard good things.
      ; )

    3. When I ran AD&D 1st edition back in like 2009 (early in my blogging days), I recall I used the "orange spine" books to plan the campaign, but OSRIC was the book at my table.

      But but but...I just want OSE to be good. I just want it to do what I want it to do. *whine*

  4. Yes, getting 11 to 18xp per orc sure speeds things up! You only need to solo kill 150 or so without dying for your level 1 fighter to level up...

    Or you could work as a party, let the thief burn some with oil, let the magic-user put some to sleep, and you and the cleric beat down any that remain. And everyone shares the XP. :D

    Of course, smart parties find that working together to bring down a higher HD creature (I've seen 5 member level 1 parties take down 6HD creatures without casualties). Probably has more loot than those orcs, too.

    1. Working as a party, each member gets like 2.5 xp per orc... and obviously I was just being illustrative, bro. I don't have many D&D games where a single fighter challenges an unending legion of orcs. :p

      As for higher level beasties, one of my favorite examples I quote when discussing the B/X xp dilemma is the medusa: she can kill your ass dead twice per round, and she's worth a paltry 420 xp. Her treasure hoard, on the other hand, is Type A, which I think is worth around 10k...

    2. Oh, I know. Once, when we were kids, though, just for fun, my best friend's level 8 or 9 fighter did decide to single-handedly challenge a group of 30 or so kobolds to single combat. Just to see what would happen, I had the kobolds accept.

      With magic weapons and armor, and high hit points, the fighter was at a huge advantage. If the kobolds had come as a group, the fighter likely would have been toast. Even then, he was pretty low in hit points by the end. :D