Tuesday, January 5, 2010

3d6: On the Offence

Yesterday I talked about how 3d6 causes average rolling. In combat that means fewer Critical Hits, but also fewer critical failures. One way to compensate for fewer critical hits is to increase the odds. Say instead of crit-ing on a natural 18 (.46% chance with 3d6) that you crit on a 16 or higher (something like a 4.6% chance). This makes the odds of criting go up to be about on par with D&D. You could likewise increase the odds for “fumbles” if so desired.

On the other hand instead of making them more frequent, you could make Critical hits mean more. The standard (read D&D) method for rewarding high rolls in combat was to have you confirm your critical hit with another d20 roll, then deal double damage. This was nice but did not necessarily mean that your hit dealt any more than a regular hit depending on how much damage you rolled. With a poor damage roll you could end up feeling like you “wasted” a Crit.

In a vitality point system, where a character has an amount of hit points and an amount of vitality points equal to his CON modifier, a critical hit could bypass the hit points and deal straight vitality damage with a good damage roll you could severely hurt an opponent, and that’s what players want when they crit.

One of the, at first, unseen benefits of moving to a 3d6 system, is the ability to “enrichen” the dice. Let’s say you were to use this 3d6 crazy thing. What if then, all your damage was based around the d6. You could eliminate the need for damage dice because your attack and damage are the SAME roll. This means that when you Crit, you’ll probably really Crit.

Tomorrow I’ll go in to Hit Die


  1. If using only d6es, will you use increasingly large dice pools? Or will you try to keep the dice low and use your character's abilities, as you mentioned?

  2. @ Anonymous
    Ultimatly I will use whatever I think works best. Between those two choises, I think focusing on improving your stats is easier that having to roll 15d6.