Dark Albion House Rules

Dark Albion House Rules

Character Creation Summary

Every character begins as a level 0 character. Roll their social class background and prior events. They begin the game with 1d6 hit-points, modified by CON (Scots Men get a further +1 bonus hit-point). The GM can automatically move them to level 1, or play one adventure as level 0; yet, if level 0 the players should already have a clear idea of what class they want their character to become at level 1, particularly if they plan for the character to become a magister or cleric (who will be apprentices or acolytes).

Characters begin speaking Anglish (Cymri speak old cymric if they have INT 9+; Scots only speak Scot, which sounds vaguely similar to Anglish at times). Characters speak one extra language for every +1 to their INT modifier.

Exp to Level 1: Finish one adventure.

Level 0 Saving Throws

Breath Attacks

Poison or Death

Petrify or Paralyze

Wands

Spells or Spell-like Devices

17

14

16

15

18


RAW Prime Requisite is in effect

Instead of using your Prime Requisite as a bonus to XP gained, subtract it from XP needed to level up. Instead of +5% bonus, just assume you only need 95% as much XP.


Backstab

When you succeed in moving silently and attack a target who is unaware; you receive a +1 bonus on that attack.


Encumbrance

Encumbrance in Coins

Move in 1 Turn

Up to 400

120 : 40 : 120

401-800

90 : 30 : 90

801-1,200

60 : 20 : 60

1,201-1,600

30 : 10 : 30

1,601-2,400

15 : 5 : 15

2,400+

0

Mule

Move in 1 Turn

Up to 3,000

120 : 40 : 120

3,001-6,000

60 : 30 : 60

6,001+

0

 

Encumbrance Rule of Thumb: 1 Pound is equivalent to 10 gold coins

HD Complexity House Rule

alternative title: Blood and Breath

In this house rule, both your hit dice and your hit points may effectively be decimated given the mechanics that follow.

Assumptions

  1. HD is short for hit dice.
  2. HD measures the amount of dice to be used to determine Maximum HP.
  3. HP is short for hit points.
  4. This house rule assumes a ruleset that applies a cap or limit on regaining hit points.
  5. This house rule assumes a ruleset that utilizes frequent re-rolls of hit points.

CON Bonus

Your modifier from your Constitution’s ability score will no longer be applied to your hit points. Instead, it will be treated as either a penalty or a bonus for any damage done directly to your hit dice. Hence, when you express your HD, it should look like this:

HD 8(-3)

Hit Points

Thus, being that CON scores no longer modify hit points, their rate of results should now be more or less uniform among those of the same class. This is especially important for house rules where hit points are periodically re-rolled.

Hit Dice Decimation

Currently, there are only two direct or ordinary ways of damaging HD. These are through critical hits and backstabs. By themselves, these two will behave mechanically as they ordinarily do given an OSR ruleset.

Hit points serve as a sort of damage soak as well as a measure of combat effectiveness for any given creature. Where a hit is critical, or a backstab is successful, hit points are ignored and damage is directly delivered to hit dice.

As a general rule, loss of hit dice will not immediately affect a creature’s hit point value. Instead, the following things may occur.

0 HD

If a creature is reduced to zero hit dice, it must now make a save against death. If it fails this save, it dies from the hit. If it succeeds on this saving throw, it must now roll from the critical injury table below.

Critical Injury Table
1d6 Result Description
1 Maiming suffer permanent ability score loss to an ability appropriate to the situation
2 Organ Failure creature incapacitated, must make save against death everyday until major surgery is performed
3 Minor Internal Bleeding 1d3 hit point loss per round of combat or per turn of dungeon exploration until major surgery is performed
4 Major Internal Bleeding 1d6 hit point loss per round of combat or per turn of dungeon exploration until major surgery is performed
5 Partial Crippling Minor loss of limb, suffer -2 penalty on all actions or reduce movement speed by a third until lost appendage is regrown
6 Total Crippling Major loss of limb, inability to perform actions or inability to move until lost appendage is regrown

After applying the injury, the creature shall remain at 0 HD until major surgery is performed or decides to convalesce. At 0 HD, a creature is only ever entitled to 1 hit point should a re-roll apply.

In the meantime, whatever hit points remain after hit dice decimation shall benefit the creature for as long as it lasts or until it is re-rolled.

0 HD and 0 HP

If a creature is ever reduced to 0 hit dice and 0 hit points at the same time, said creature dies immediately without save or exception.

Hit Dice Decimation Rate

When hit dice is decimated, the rate of reduction is not directly proportionate to the damage delivered. Instead, we follow the HD decimation rate table below.

HD Decimation Rate Table
Damage Decimation
1 to 5 1 point of decimation
6 to 10 2 points of decimation
11 to 15 4 points of decimation
16 to 20 5 points of decimation
21 or more 6 points of decimation

Separating Hit Dice from Hit Points, and complicating Armor Class

HP and HP

The HD and HP idea comes apes the Flesh and Grit mechanic of another OSR ruleset I forgot the name of, but I learned about from Cavegirl’s own OSR game. But, I’m going to complicate it a bit by adding Scarlet Heroes’ HD damage table.

Some attacks damage HD directly. Most attacks, however, must deplete HP first. Zero HD is death. Zero HP is loss of combat effectiveness. HD can only be replenished through major medical attention. Damaged HD will also the number of dice used for HP accordingly. HP is replenished through rest and eating, or minor medical attention.

Separating HD from HP also makes it a simpler thing to use that other mechanic I found out about concerning re-rolling HP whenever a party rests and eats, with good quality rest and eating choosing whichever roll is highest, and so on.

And as for CON bonuses, such bonuses will only apply as extra hits to one’s HD, not extra dice.

So, in summary: HD+Hit Bonus is separate from HP. Only HD creates HP.

AC and AP

With the same idea as above. AC creates Armor Points. Armor points act as Damage Soak and Durability for the armor and will make equipment maintenance much more present in games.

Primarily, the rules here are for ascending DC mechanics.

So, AC will serve as a base for AD, or Armor Dice. Armor Dice will be based on quality, ranging from poor quality D4 armor all the way up to legendary d20 armor. AC will also determine how many of said AD will be thrown to determine AP.

Before an attack could hit HP, it must first deplete AP. But, and attack from behind ignores AP. If an enemy hits, the attack goes straight to HP.

So, in summary: deplete AP first to deplete HP, then deplete HP to deplete HD.

Repairing armor allows you to re-roll your AP, but Zero AP means the armor is salvageable.

Alpha 408c Playtest 1.5

I haven;t actually yet decided just what or who these Ogres are. Would I make them the second sentient race to occupy this world? But first, let’s ask some World Building questions to confirm some ideas I have in my head.

ORACLE
Me Is the [Human] race native to Mauba’na’?
ORACLE Yes.
Me IS the [Nonhuman] race native to Mauba’na’?
ORACLE Yes, but, with complications. A piece of gear has failed to work for either the hero or an NPC.
Me Interest. Was this [Nonhuman] race once human?
ORACLE No.
Me I’m going to interpret this as a race that had once been something else, but changed due to the failure of used artifact. What was the nature of this failure?
ORACLE Treachery because of History and Duty then Coins.
Me Interesting. What is the nature of their relationship with the World Creator?
ORACLE Despair then Guilt. Innocence and Fear then Courage.
Me What is the nature of the relationship between the native [Human] race and with the world creator?
ORACLE Honor. Pride. Blindness and Seizure and Poison.
Me Did the World Creator also create the races?
ORACLE Yes.
Me Oh wow, that is a very interesting turn of events. Ok. Did the World Creator have anything to do with the Artifact?
ORACLE No, but a fact the hero thinks they know is actually wrong.
Me Oh wow, which means the Artifact and its use and consequent failure remains a mystery. Ok. Well, this settles it. The Ogres are the [Nonhuman] race of Mauba’na’.

That said, some ideas I’d like for an [Ogre] race:

  • A monstrous looking race. They have spines for hair.
  • An enourmous race. They have six arms.
  • An insectile race. Explains the six arms. Vestigial wings as secondary set of arms; used to hold equipment. Smaller, more dextrous tertiary arms beneath the primary ones, serve as communicative aids and fine-tool using arms. Tertiatry arms can’t hold weapons, Secondary arms can’t use weapons. Also, they grow carapace instead of skin, an exoskeleton instead of a skeleton. Still, the appearance is tempered somewhat with more homonid features. Almost like a six armed giant wearing powerarmor.
  • An Arthurian Ogrish race, they are bearded and extremely magical.
  • Carapace Color Spectrum: Red, Orange, Yellow. Red is Boss. Orange is Mage or Elite. Yellow is Minion. Some of it is dazzling, most of it is dull and basic.
  • Ogre; No. Appear: 1d6 (2d6); Armor Class: 5; Attacks: 1 fist +4 or 1 weapon +4; Damage: 1d6 or by weapon; Move: 30’; Morale: 9; Hit Dice: 4; Skill Bonus: +2 Treasure: H3 (H4)

That’s enough for now. Next entry, we progress the plot.

Technological Aspect Generator Alpha 1.5

Just a little something to generate classes.

Flexible tag allows multi-classing
This is a Fantasy Class System Generator
TAG Type Purpose TAG
Base Your most significant determinator of abilities Race, Tool, Magic, Skills, Profession, Archetype
Treatment How it translates mechanically as Class, and Class, is Class
System How it behaves mechanically as a Class System Absolute Might and Magic Classes, Flexible Might and Magic Classes, Flexible Holy Trinity Classes, Absolute Holy Trinity Classes, Flexible Holy Trinity+1 Classes, Absolute Holy Trinity+1 Classes, One-Class, Job-Class
Mechanics How the system operates
Pick five tags
Defensive Subclassing, Offensive Subclassing, Support Subclassing, Utility Subclassing, Control Subclassing, Niche Protection, HP: Flesh and Grit Points, HP: Meat Points, HP: Plot Armor, Tiered Abilities, Leveled Classes, Gold XP, Kill XP, Skill XP, Ascending AC, Descending AC, AC: Damage Reduction, AC: Damage Rejection, Skill Sets, Traits and Abilities, Skill Trees, Proficiencies
Spectrum The spectrum of traits and abilities these classes are expected to abide by. [Splat] vs. [Splat]; [Splat] vs. [Splat]; All Access [Splat]
Splats: Offensive, Defensive, Support, Control, Utility, Gimmick
Usage How widespread is its use Adventurers Only, Social-Class Only, Birthright Only, Everyone is Classed
Fluff How is it fluffed? High Fantasy, Low Fantasy, Historical Fantasy, Modern Fantasy, Techno-Fantasy

Alpha 408c Playtest 1.4

ORACLE
Me Did my laborer get out?
ORACLE No
Me Oracle, do they capture us alive?
ORACLE Yes
Me Why did they capture us alive?
ORACLE Shame
Me Could you elaborate on that, I’m afraid to ask.
ORACLE Rot because of Pride but Duty.
Me A bit more detail please.
ORACLE History: Wealth.
Me Oh, okay, I think yeah. That gives me something to work with, thanks.

No, my laborer did not make it out. They took most of my equipment, actually, all of it, leaving me only my clothes and my pride. Their purpose? To shame me, to leave me to rot in their dungeon. To swell their pride, but duty demands they keep me alive. The history that exists between this Ogre race and that of my own, a human, involves a great deal of wealth. At least that’s what I could gather from their arguing and jostling. A few did want to eat me. But the boss, the Boss Ogre wanted ransom. Wanted debts paid.

I think this would be a great time to elaborate on the peoples of this setting; and I think I’ve established enough facts, now, to help me shape the world.

ORACLE
Me Did they eat my laborer?
ORACLE Yes
Me Why?
ORACLE Naiveté because of Rapacity; Loyalty. Foolishness but Longing because of Honor.
Me Ooh, that makes for a great dynamic among the Ogres. The young ones are rapacious, and the Boss Ogre hands them the human meat to repay their loyalty. This is foolishness, no doubt, and may cause war with the humans, but honor dictates he satisfy their longing for human flesh. Oh, it has been so long since the Ogres have tasted human flesh.
0R.1.Zen Wouldn’t you like to know about the laborer you let them eat?
Me Not particularly, no.
0R.1.Zen Then let me tell you, my treat.
Me Unless it’s a way out of this shit, I’m not particularly interested.
0R.1.Zen Oh, but I insist. Here, feast of facts now established, of a man now dead.

They wished to ransom me, but I knew none would follow. I chose Outsider for a trait, pooled all two of my traits, because I believed it would make for a great cheat. I was wrong, of course. I don’t know how to use it, to be honest, because I haven’t defined the fucking trait yet.

Hence, I have very little time in my favor. Best I plan accordingly. Take stock of my prison, take stock of this academy, and take stock of the area around it. The more facts I establish, the bigger the world I create, the more I collect in certainty.

I think that makes for a great non-cheat mechanic for playing solo. Certainty of a quesiton being directly proportional to the number of facts you’ve established. Hmm…very interesting.

ORACLE
Me Oracle, did they post guards? I believe they would.
ORACLE Yes
Me How many?
ORACLE Kinship. Confusion and Stupidity.
Me I’ll interpret that as a skeleton crew of relatives. It’s been a long time since anyone actually been locked up in their dungeon, and they’re not sure how to go about it. The Ogres end up bullying their younger relatives into doing shifts.
Okay, I try and talk to one of the guards. I get zero bonus from my charisma. Obviously, these assholes are unfriendly.
ORACLE Qualified Consent: Innocence.
Me Great, we start talking. I start asking about general things.
ORACLE Ignorance. Inheritance.
Me Fuckin’ A. Shitbreath has shit for brains. I ask some more general questions about the academy and the surrounding area.
ORACLE Skillfulness then Illegality then Truth.
Me Man, well, that’s enough for now. Time to do some interpretations.

Since I did manage to get this guy to open up, that should allow me enough leeway to establish some more facts, specifically, about this place and about the Ogres in general.

The Demon-ruled academy belongs to what nation?
The Nation of Uo was first established as an excavation site. After centuries of projecting its influence and power, all while acquiring territory from its neighbors, it became a NEAR-FUTURE MARCH. Led by a trusted and respected citizen at the head of what is ostensibly a powerful TYRANNY, this valley nation survives on easy access to metal, infrastructure, and hard labor but needs trade to acquire fauna, wealth, and flora.
The look and feel of this nation is a mix of Arthurian mythological themes mixed with Aztec cultural materialism and aesthetic.
A RESIGNED people, they lack ambition or hope, and endure their present difficulties with stoic patience while OPPRESSION strangles society. FREEDOM OF CONSCIENCE does not exist; all are expected to subscribe to the religious beliefs of the dominant group even if the freedom was once held. Although said freedom is blamed for some great disaster. More than a few rulers and officials secretly sympathize with the malcontents.

Hmm, that’s enough for now. I’ll do some more interpretations later.