Posts Tagged ‘D&D Next’

While surfing the blogosphere tonight, I came across a post that caught my interest on The Alexandrian about D&D Next. (I had previously blogged about the Advantage / Disadvantage mechanic, and ended up incorporating the concept into Dwarven Glory.)

The bit that got my attention relates to the “Hazard” mechanic and reads as follows:

Essentially, if you fail a roll by 10 or more you suffer the hazard. This immediately gives you a consistent mechanical framework for all kinds of stuff: Fail a climbing check and you don’t make any progress; but if suffer a climbing hazard you fall. Fail a check to disarm a trap and you didn’t disarm it; but if you suffer a hazard on the check you’ve actually triggered the trap. And so forth.

This seems good; consider it swiped.

In practice, whenever a player wants to try something “cool” (and the referee agrees) they can attempt a relevant skill check (Athletics, Subterfuge, or Lore). Succeed a check against “Target 20” and your awesomeness is assured. Fail against “Target 10” (or roll a natural 1), though, and you could be in for a world of hurt.

I wouldn’t want to punish characters by inflicting automatic suckiness – a saving throw should be allowed to avoid an embarrassing outcome – but there is always a risk when trying to think “outside the box”, and I think the Hazard mechanic models this reasonably well.

Once again, I must give an unexpected thanks to D&D Next for supplying a useful rules mechanic…

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Based on what I’ve seen on the OSR blogs, there’s a concept from the D&D Next playtest that could be worthwhile in old-school games – namely the Advantage / Disadvantage rule. You can read the post at wizards.com, but the gist is as follows:

If you’re deemed to have an advantage, you roll 2d20 and take the higher of the two rolls. If you’re at a disadvantage, you roll 2d20 and take the lower.


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