Mystic Ages Publishing

{imagination + fun}

It's been slow here in Mystic Ages land.

I have been excited about the response for the Basic Hack - quite a number of people have tossed some spare change my way or downloaded it for free, more than I expected. It needs some work, I think, so look for an update and some clarifications. Plus, I do have a Lulu version possible, but I got a bit of fixing to do on it as well.

On the game design front, I still am working on some things in the midst of a busy life. I've got a draft going for my old Journey to Cannibal Island mega adventure, probably ported to 5E. And I keep toying with an idea of a simplified/streamlined 5E/OSRIC clone centered way too much on Advantage/Disadvantage.

Here is where I am stuck, for now.

I love Advantage/Disadvantage. It seems a way to both support some narrative kind of play and bolster roleplaying as well as giving some real mechanical benefit to gameplay. However, it seems that you get bogged down if you turn a D20-esque game into a dice pool system, rolling multiple D20s and keeping the largest. Rolling 2 max is just about perfect, keeping the highest or keeping the lowest.

In 5E, it does seem the balance tips toward advantage/disadvantage being a bit rare or uncommon in most situations. If you make it more common, kind of like how I play with it in the 2D10 One Page system, you end up with a tiny dice pool mechanic. I don't like it.

So what about building a setting and simplified OSRIC system where getting Advantage is the goal in all situations? And it's hard to get. And where even in the setting, the PCs and NPCs talk about having advantage/disadvantage.

For example, a hero wants to defeat some evil wizard. Fine. His goal will be to figure out some way to get advantage over that wizard. Is that discovering a secret name? A magical spell? An artifact?

Alternately, an evil wizard has a hero in disadvantage - because he captured his lover, has some super secret info, or is just plain better than the hero. In this case, the hero is going to do everything he can to avoid confrontation until he can level the playing field.

Do you get it?

I'm kicking this around - a more storytelling-esque OSRIC - and will let you know if something comes of it.

Happy gaming!

Cover Image of the 2D10 One Page system

Just a few days after dusting off an ancient version of the 2D10 roleplaying game system, I went to work on a new one, taking a little bit of the old text and creating something new. I'm excited about it, although it needs more work. I've even launched a little thread on RPG.Net to stir up a few more comments. Please join in.

You can grab the draft here: (Updated)

I've got a couple of other pieces for it ready too - a Hero Sheet and a Beasties & Bandits supplements for creating villains and allies the heroes will face.

My major questions remain:

  • Get the default DR right. 12 might be too low. 15 could be the sweet spot.
  • Is halving the best mechanism? Or would a stock +4 bonus for using an occupation and feat be a little smoother? I think I fixed this in the latest draft.
  • I need to add some sort of initiative or very basic idea of how to handle group contests. Fixed this too. Awesome.

More to come.

-- Nathan