Stars/Worlds Without Number (General Thread)


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Yora

Legend
I've been looking up the probabilities for rolling hit points in AnyDice, and I'm really not seeing an improvement of replacing 1d4 with 1d6-1 and 1d10 with 1d6+2.

The average amount of hit points for characters remains exactly the same. However, the odds for very high and very low results change quite significantly.

For mages, rolling 1d6-1 means they have a chance to roll a 5, but also a chance to roll a 0, which also counts as 1 hp.
1d4 with a +1 Con modifier means a spread of 2 to 5. (1d6-1)+1 results in a spread of 1 to 6.
Mages get a chance to get higher hp than on a d4, but this comes with a much greater chance to get only 1.

For warriors it's the opposite. They end up with a deceased chance to get very high hp, and a decrease chance to get very low hp.

I feel that this hurts mages a lot more than it helps warriors. And increases randomness for low level characters, while higher level characters are trending closer to an average anyway. (Fewer dice means more outliers, more dice means closer to average.)

A fighter with only modest hp isn't great, but at least it has some hp to work with. A mage with almost no hp is having a much worse day. This seems like a bad change to me.
 

Aldarc

Legend
I've been looking up the probabilities for rolling hit points in AnyDice, and I'm really not seeing an improvement of replacing 1d4 with 1d6-1 and 1d10 with 1d6+2.

The average amount of hit points for characters remains exactly the same. However, the odds for very high and very low results change quite significantly.

For mages, rolling 1d6-1 means they have a chance to roll a 5, but also a chance to roll a 0, which also counts as 1 hp.
1d4 with a +1 Con modifier means a spread of 2 to 5. (1d6-1)+1 results in a spread of 1 to 6.
Mages get a chance to get higher hp than on a d4, but this comes with a much greater chance to get only 1.

For warriors it's the opposite. They end up with a deceased chance to get very high hp, and a decrease chance to get very low hp.

I feel that this hurts mages a lot more than it helps warriors. And increases randomness for low level characters, while higher level characters are trending closer to an average anyway. (Fewer dice means more outliers, more dice means closer to average.)

A fighter with only modest hp isn't great, but at least it has some hp to work with. A mage with almost no hp is having a much worse day. This seems like a bad change to me.
I prefer using set/average HP anyway.

Thanks to @Yora's threads, I may whip up a more S&S inspired setting for WWN.
So as a follow-up:

Here is my new iteration for a Sword & Sorcery setting: Dunia. In many respects, however, it also leans heavily into Sword & Soul, including Crawford's Spears of the Dawn and Charles Saunders's Imaro, but the campaign uses WWN. It sets WWN's idea of weird, alien Outsiders who have come and gone from a world they have altered but puts it in the context of humanity in a quasi-African setting, so there are also post-colonial tones to it.

The Azulans are the optional Elves/Melniboneans/Atlanteans. The Saurians are the obligatory Snake/Lizard-folk. Not sure what else there may be as far as demihumans go.

This map was done on Wonderdraft. It's still a draft.

Dunia.jpg
 

kenada

Legend
Supporter
Our “first” session is this weekend. I’m going through adventure creation, flip through the exploration challenges section, and see a part on generating points of interest for hex crawls. Why isn’t this stuff all in one place? There’s a bunch on generating points of interest in the wilderness tags section of the setting creation chapter. Why have something slightly different in the adventure chapter? These things should build off and complement each other.

This is my biggest frustration with WWN. I miss this stuff and default to my old ways, which is Alexandrian-style hexcrawl prep (i.e., all the things). I’ve generated so much unnecessary crap. I think I have a handle on it now, but I could have done without the frustration. With all that said, I love the tags-based generators. I’m pretty good at riffing off a few bits of input. I just need to not burn myself out in the process. 😅
 


Yora

Legend
That would greatly depend on what people like about 3rd edition. I really started with 3rd and WWN does feel very familiar to what I'm used to as the default for D&D. I believe Ben also got into D&D later, so that might also be his perception.
But there's really not that much that is specifically like the main distinguishing elements of 3rd edition. There's only three classes (with five mage traditions) and you're locked into your initial pick for the whole campaign. Foci are like feats, but those are in 5th and I believe 4th edition as well. There are skill points, but they work quite different from 3rd edition. And the whole magic system is almost entirely different.
I really don't know where the similar feel to 3rd edition comes from, but I'm with Ben on this that it seems taking influences from that system.
 

Aldarc

Legend
That would greatly depend on what people like about 3rd edition. I really started with 3rd and WWN does feel very familiar to what I'm used to as the default for D&D. I believe Ben also got into D&D later, so that might also be his perception.
But there's really not that much that is specifically like the main distinguishing elements of 3rd edition. There's only three classes (with five mage traditions) and you're locked into your initial pick for the whole campaign. Foci are like feats, but those are in 5th and I believe 4th edition as well. There are skill points, but they work quite different from 3rd edition. And the whole magic system is almost entirely different.
I really don't know where the similar feel to 3rd edition comes from, but I'm with Ben on this that it seems taking influences from that system.
I would propose True 20 as a transitional form that likely influenced Stars Without Number.

True 20 came out as a generic version of Blue Rose RPG during the d20 OGL era of 3E. BR and T20 stripped everything down to a single d20 die and all the classes down to three: Warrior, Expert, and Adept. These were the NPC classes from 3E D&D. But then they split up levels between feats and talents. Also every class got a unique ability for starting in that class as your base class: e.g., a Warrior could spend one Conviction point to erase all bruised and hurt conditions. Magic involved skill rolls (often against fatigue) and used powers as opposed to spells.

IMHO, while Crawford clearly deviates from this, there does appear to be influence. Warrior, Expert, Adept in BR/T20 -> Warrior, Expert, Mystic in SWN and Warrior, Expert, Mage in WWN. Adept Powers in T20 become Mystic Psionic Techniques in SWN.
 


kenada

Legend
Supporter
I was also reminded of 3e when I first read WWN. You can see where it’s built on B/X, but character customization and the action economy are both very reminiscent of 3e. I haven’t played any T20-based games, so I can’t speak to that influence, but it stuck me as doing the sorts of things with 3e that people were doing in their house rules.

I was also reminded a bit of 4e (particularly the lack of iterative attacks and the powerful class abilities), but I try not to draw too much attention to that to my players because they didn’t like 4e. 😅
 


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