Player-Facing Rolls

There’s been some discussion on the web relating to using “player-facing rolls” (e.g., Gamer: The Blogging: Player-Facing Rolls.). In D&D, this is where you flip the mechanic over and have the players roll defense vs a static offense statistic (offensive rolls are made normally). Here’s a link that explains it more from the SRD. The DM essentially never needs to touch the dice (unless they’ve got some hidden roll they want to make).

I’ve considered them before and while I’ve never used them, the idea intrigues me. However, I’ve noted that there is a strong polarization around the idea. People either love the idea or hate the idea. Some of the “Love” may be the shininess or appreciation of its cleverness and some of the “Hate” may be related to “don’t mess with how I’ve always played my game!”. This thread on the Troll Lord Castles & Crusandes forum speaks to how old-school type games seem to perceive the idea (I know “Old-school” is a loaded term that may mean a lot of different things, but I think my point remains the same regardless of whether you view C&C as strictly Old-School or not).

I’ve been thinking of using it for my Atlantis/C&C/HAGIS mash-up, but am leaning against it. Not that I don’t like it, I do. I just want to remove any perceived bumps in the road. With the limits on all our time, all the logistics in setting up a game, and all the changes I’m making to rules that will require some explanation….I just don’t want another thing to explain. Perhaps another time I’ll use it….or swap it in later. We’ll have to see. I’d love to hear what others think about it….especially those who’ve used it.


Mash-up RPG

warrior1OK, its time to build the PBP I mentioned here. I plan on doing two of these actually. The second, HAGIS: The Mythos Files, will essentially be The X-files meets Call of Cthulhu. I’ll table it for a bit since its a bit more complicated…plus my wife will be involved. She’s not a gamer as of yet, but has expressed an interest in such a game…in fact, I’m not sure if we’ll do that one as a PBP…It might need to be live. The first will be HAGIS: Atlantean Adventures (Aega Mythea?) and will be  set in the Atlantean world (High Swords & Sorcery a la Bard Games Atlantean Trilogy…with my own spin of course).

OK, Here’s the mix:

The Atlantean Trilogy (Bard Games’ The Arcanum, The Lexicon, and The Bestiary…the last two of those were also published as a combined volume called Atlantis: The Lost World). This will serve as the core setting. It is essentially our own Earth or proto-Earth before the Oceans drank Atlantis. It contains all the real-world cultures all mashed up anachronistically. This is my favorite setting of all time.

FUDGE/FATE – I like the aspects provision or Fate (kind of like the Spiritual Attributes of TRoS). We will be making free and frequent use of  metagame elements. In fact, I plan on the players having much more information than their characters do. It will be expected that player and character knowledge will be kept in different buckets…I’m going to think about how much interchange between these two will be permitted/encouraged. I also am looking at the 5by4 Magic system on Steffan O’Sullivan’s page….or maybe the Magical Medly system…hmm, need to think on this.

Castles & Crusades – I really love this game. I’m still not crazy about the Vanican Fire’n’Forget style magic, but its really not that hard to write that out. The point here is that I’m going to be using class-like structures, call them archetypes, whatever. Pretty much pick a class from any source D&D, C&C, The Arcanum, etc. and I’ll adapt it to our Mashup.

the HAGIS TriDie system – as previously discussed, roll three d20’s and use the median result (unless we have some meta-game funk going on and then either the hi or lo result is used….).

True20 – I’m looking at their positive/negative tags and their magic system.

No Kung-Fu is better than swords crap.  So monks and martial artists are pretty much out for this dance.

As I look at this, I realize that my Mash is a mess. That’s OK though; it was only intended as a brainstorming session. I will work on tightening this up and throwing some of it out….I only need *one* magic system for this. I can always try another one later.


The Stars Over Mestea

One of my fellow members (Maurice Forester) at the YahooGroup that’s dedicated to the old Bard Games “Atlantean Trilogy” has an excellent writeup for his short ( but sweet) campaign “The Stars Over Mestea” on his website:


It makes for a good read and I personally find it very inspiring in working on my own gaming endeavors. I know, I know; it is pretty geeky reading other people’s campaign write-ups for out-of-print games…. and I’m guilty as charged.

I’m actually hoping to get our own Doc Pazzazzu to post some of his geeky, gaming goodness sometime soon. Now those were some good times in Atlantis, let me tell you. Come-on, Doc. Doesn’t the Lay of Elric, Adaen, & Slash deserve to to be told again?

[uh huh huh huh….Hey, Beavis….he said “Lay”]

Aega Mythea Thought Item – Notation for HAGIS Dice Rolling

 Note: This was posted to the RPG Create Yahoo Group and there is some discussion there.

Flaming Bowl of Seeing

Notation for HAGIS Dice Rolling:


Full Notation


Roll a number of dice in which x = the number of dice, d is merely an identifier that dice are involved, y = number of sides on each die, and a = the number of the die in order from highest to lowest.

e.g., a standard mid20 roll would be noted 3d20(2). A hi20 roll would be indicated as 3d20(1). A tri20 roll would be noted as 3d20(a); the “a” is left to indicate that the middle value is used unless a meta-game influence would indicate a different value be used.



Abbreviated Notation(s)


Roll three d20’s and take the middle die value (see also mid20). In instances in which a PASSION (a metagame influence) has been invoked or otherwise triggered, the high or low value (see also hi20 and lo20) is used as appropriate for the circumstances related to the meta-game influence activation. A tri20 roll can be represented as 3d20(a); the “a” is left to indicate that which value is used is subject to meta-game circumstances (the middle value is used as the default unless a meta-game influence would indicate a different value be used).

e.g., a standard tri20 roll might generate a 12, a 3, and a 15 which using the default middle value (i.e., mid20) yields a value of 12.



A tri20 roll taking the middle value of the three dice. This is the default for a tri20 roll.


A tri20 roll taking the high value of the three dice. This is not the default for a tri20 roll and is only used when indicated by a meta-game influence


A tri20 roll taking the low value of the three dice. This is not the default for a tri20 roll and is only used when indicated by a meta-game influence

Aega Mythea, an ancient recipe for High Adventure is made with HAGIS!


Note: This was posted to the RPG Create Yahoo Group and there is some discussion there.

Aega Mythea – Update Coming Soon

I’ve been a little slow on posting over the last two weeks. In part due to personal time constraints and in part because I’m hoping to get some more Aega Mythea materials worked out and posted.

I have some time over the next few days; so there should be some new development content up here by the end of the week.

-Adaen of Bridgewater