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T O P I C    R E V I E W
Dalor Darden Posted - 17 Apr 2008 : 03:07:56
So...

I was sitting at my desk today doing some writing and became stumped on something (how to make an encounter where a party gets completely trounced and has to run away, but I don't kill any of them) and I was a little at odds against myself because in 3.5 it is hard to do just that! Combats are very quick and lethal at times...especially compared to earlier editions. Then I happened to glance over at my 1st Ed. books and had what could only have been, for me, a revelation:

Each edition of this game seems to make combat much quicker and deadlier for one side or the other.

For 4th Ed. they have said exactly that, that they are trying to make combat that much faster to resolve...

When was the last time any of you can remember fighting 40+ Trolls in a long and drawn out combat? Well, for me, it was 1st Edition...and that got me to thinking.

I had sworn when Gary Gygax died that I would run my next campaign using 1st Edition rules...and so I'm going to do just that!

But I'm going to run it as an ONLINE game...not a PBEM game...but online using a chat room with a dice bot. I just don't have the patience for anything other than quick action I guess...a personal flaw perhaps.

So...(again)

Who here would be interested in playing a 1st Edition AD&D game set in the Forgotten Realms? And, MORE IMPORTANTLY, who here can show me how to get that done using existing technology that is free for anyone wanting to play?

I don't even know what night I would be doing this on...most likely Wed. Nights like this where I have some time on my hands...and there are some rules:

1) You MUST have at least a 1st Edition Player's Handbook at your disposal.

2) You MUST have enough dedication to be at the game every time we play (which will be at least every other Wed. Night if not more).

3) It would HELP a great deal if you were near the same Time Zone as me so we don't have too much conflict...I live in Montana U.S.A. (Mountain Time).

4) I'm looking for a voice chat capable program so that we can all use it to cut down on typing...so you MUST be willing to role-play! Dice are for combat in 1st Edition...not for roll-playing.

5) You MUST be of legal age to hear profane statements...I'm not saying I'm a vulgar person, but if my evil wizard wants to curse the party he's going to do it!

6) You MUST be willing to give me a dang good character description and history IN WRITING to play in this game. For 1st Ed...there isn't much else to define your character!

7) The only races allowed are standard per the 1st Edition Player's Handbook...class restrictions will be as published (No Drow, no Genesai, no Shades, etc...).

8) It will help if you are willing to not be a Canon player. My knowledge of the Realms is good...but there is SOOOOOO much I don't know and might "mess up" in the game.


Enough ver(gar)bage for now...if anyone is interested, please let me know. It will be several days in the making once I even have people that are interested...

Later

EDIT NOTE: So much has changed in the process of putting this game together I thought I would strike out all the "requirements" as most of them aren't valid any longer...This has turned into a PBEM game, so I didn't want anyone to have the wrong idea.
25   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
Seravin Posted - 06 Mar 2019 : 11:44:52
Yeah I always viewed that as larger monsters have more hitpoints and to balance that take more damage from certain weapon types reflecting that a hit would strike a larger area of their body (as a counter balance). But I think some weapons did less damage to larger creatures as well? Must've been some logic to it!
Diffan Posted - 06 Mar 2019 : 10:36:39
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

quote:
Originally posted by Diffan

So another 1e question. My previously mentioned Paladin gets proficiency with 3 weapons at 1st level (I chose Bastard sword, glaive, and light crossbow) and I'm confused by the damage die. I get they don't use die but ranges of damage. My Paladin's 15 Str means he adds nothing to attack or damage, but what gets me is the attacking opponent damage change. A bastard sword deals 2-8 damage (2d4) vs. a Small and Medium creature but 2-16 (2d8) vs. Large creatures. So why the change in damage and more effecting larger foes?



Larger target means more of it gets hit by the blade.



That's.....kinda odd. Maybe it's mitigated by extra HP bigger creatures get? Well at least I read it correctly lol.
Wooly Rupert Posted - 06 Mar 2019 : 10:08:11
quote:
Originally posted by Diffan

So another 1e question. My previously mentioned Paladin gets proficiency with 3 weapons at 1st level (I chose Bastard sword, glaive, and light crossbow) and I'm confused by the damage die. I get they don't use die but ranges of damage. My Paladin's 15 Str means he adds nothing to attack or damage, but what gets me is the attacking opponent damage change. A bastard sword deals 2-8 damage (2d4) vs. a Small and Medium creature but 2-16 (2d8) vs. Large creatures. So why the change in damage and more effecting larger foes?



Larger target means more of it gets hit by the blade.
Diffan Posted - 06 Mar 2019 : 09:01:04
So another 1e question. My previously mentioned Paladin gets proficiency with 3 weapons at 1st level (I chose Bastard sword, glaive, and light crossbow) and I'm confused by the damage die. I get they don't use die but ranges of damage. My Paladin's 15 Str means he adds nothing to attack or damage, but what gets me is the attacking opponent damage change. A bastard sword deals 2-8 damage (2d4) vs. a Small and Medium creature but 2-16 (2d8) vs. Large creatures. So why the change in damage and more effecting larger foes?
Dalor Darden Posted - 08 Feb 2018 : 17:44:32
I don't think a month goes by where I don't think about this particular game and how I wish I hadn't blown it.

Had awesome players and just messed it all up.

I really like Melvaunt as a place to adventure from in the Moonsea area too.

My son wants to start a new game, so I may start in Phlan with Ruins of Adventure...
Ayrik Posted - 12 Nov 2017 : 20:47:49
Well, psionics were always "optional" (and unwieldy) in every game edition and setting, barring Dark Sun and perhaps 4E.

All of the rules in 1E Unearthed Arcana were "optional", and those which survived the transition into 2E PHB/DMG were sidebarred as "optional". Meaning that straight roll-d20-for-THAC0-vs-AC is all that's really needed in the strictest sense.

But of course if you're gonna play 1E AD&D then you're gonna use *all* the "optional" AD&D rules and complexities. Otherwise you're gonna play Basic D&D.

The Sneak was a party's surety for survival in the 1E era, the first line of defense against instantly lethal traps scattered by the antagonistic DM. The Tank, Healer, and Artillery wouldn't last very long without the Sneak. Too bad the classic dirty treacherous cowardly little Sneak evolved into the foppish/elegant/emo Rogue then became discarded by the new paradigm of gishy parties with increasingly blurry/overlapping hybrid roles.
Wooly Rupert Posted - 12 Nov 2017 : 16:20:15
quote:
Originally posted by Ayrik


If you think the THAC0 mechanics are bad then just wait until the psionics come into play, lol.



I'm a huge fan of psionics, but they've been poorly integrated into D&D - any edition. Dark Sun is the one exception, because the setting was built from the ground up with psionics in mind.

As much as I like psionics, I've pretty much concluded that they don't belong in D&D. I'm not saying they don't belong in fantasy RPGs -- they just don't belong in a system that was designed around having a sneaky person, a tank, a buffer/healer, and a magical artillery person.
Ayrik Posted - 12 Nov 2017 : 07:05:10
I recall a big timesaver was to write out a little table on each character sheet which paired all the attack rolls (1 through 20) with the actual Armor Classes they'd hit. For each particular weapon type the character was likely to use, lol. So the player says "I attack with my longsword, I rolled 14, hits AC-2 vs plate or AC0 vs chain or AC3 vs leather, etc". Instead of player says "I attack with my longsword, I rolled a 14 ... wait while I consult four tables in three books to determine which AC I hit". High Str scores do add a bonus to melee attacks, as high Dex scores add a bonus to missile attacks.

If you think the THAC0 mechanics are bad then just wait until the psionics come into play, lol.
idilippy Posted - 12 Nov 2017 : 03:28:47
Thac0 also changed in 1e, though 1e used a to hit chart by class. As you went up in level your chance to hit got better every couple of levels. Thac0 was just a shorthand 2e used that gave you one number, your score required to hit an armor class of 0, and then you could extrapolate from there. 1e laid the whole chart out for what AC different rolls would hit.

For a specific example, looking in the DMG page 74, a first level fighter hits an armor class of 3 on a 17, or an armor class of 0 on a 20. An 8th level fighter hits an armor class of 3 on an 11, thac0 of 14. How you use the chart is you roll your d20, add any strength to hit adjustments, magical swords, specialization bonuses, etc and get a final number, which the chart tells you hits a certain armor class.

Using thac0 the easiest way in my opinion is to subtract the armor class of the opponent from your thac0 for a target number. It's also possible to just roll and compare the difference between your rolled score and your thac0 to find what AC you hit and announce that. If you have a thac0 of 20 and you roll a 15 you are 5 worse, so you hit an AC of 5.

Also the fighter attacks allow them to make bonus attacks against monsters of less than 1 hit die. These would be things like goblins and kobolds, ordinary men like generic bandits and pirates, and other less that 1 hit die threats, but not orcs or bugbears or larger threats. Combined with their fairly good saving throws and best armor/weapons fighters are sturdy in 1e, relatively, especially early on.
Wooly Rupert Posted - 12 Nov 2017 : 02:57:57
I don't know about 1E, but THAC0 did change as characters leveled up in 2E, making it easier to make attacks.
Diffan Posted - 12 Nov 2017 : 01:51:27
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

THAC0 and the 1E-2E Armor Class system combined to be a really weird mechanic. If they'd started with AC0 as the worst, instead of being right in the middle, the mechanic would have been a lot easier.

I recall that there was some trick to making THAC0 easier, rather than remembering to add or subtract the AC -- but by the time I heard of that trick, 3E had made it moot.



Yea, it's certainly....different if I must say. What confuses me is the notion that level doesn't change you're to-hit chance. An 8th level Fighter is just as capable to hit an AC 3 Monster as a 1st level Fighter but will most likely have a magic weapon to make the chance better..I guess? The biggest difference that I've seen is that higher level characters simply get more attacks per round plus (and this is what I've found so amazing about 1e Fighters) their ability to make any number of attacks equal to their level against monsters with less than d8 hit die . Wow what a wasted opportunity they had in 3E to make Fighters actually pretty awesome.

EDIT: As a side question, did 2E AD&D retain the Fighter's ability to make any number of attacks = fighter level vs. low Hit Die creatures or was that specifically a 1e thing?
Wooly Rupert Posted - 12 Nov 2017 : 00:21:33
THAC0 and the 1E-2E Armor Class system combined to be a really weird mechanic. If they'd started with AC0 as the worst, instead of being right in the middle, the mechanic would have been a lot easier.

I recall that there was some trick to making THAC0 easier, rather than remembering to add or subtract the AC -- but by the time I heard of that trick, 3E had made it moot.
Diffan Posted - 11 Nov 2017 : 22:37:34
quote:
Originally posted by Thauramarth

quote:
Originally posted by Diffan

So I got copies of AD&D 1e PHB, DMG, and the Monster Manual and Im just completely baffled. I got, to a point, character creation down but every thing tied to combat, Initiative, attack matrices is all very confusing. Is there a To-Hit system? I see the table for weapons and such with the AC and attack rolls but what does that mean?

Ah, the attack tables. The attack matrix is bascially the "To hit" system. The attack matrix will indicate which value you need on the d20 roll to hit a particular AC. This corresponds pretty much exactly to 2nd Edition's THAC0. Apply bonuses and maluses for strength, magical bonuses, etc.

The Weapons tables - everyone's favourite bit in AD&D 1st edition. Right - the weapons tables. Gygax & Co developed a detailed matrix of how good particular weapons were versus particular types of armor. The +x / -y of a weapon versus a particular type of armor is the bonus or malus of that weapon. Apply to the D20 roll. Easy, peasy, lemon squeezy (except it's not,really )

AD&D's 2nd Edition's THAC0 approach simplified the combat system soooooo much. You can use the THAC0 system, gleefully ignore the weapons tables, and be done with it (unless you feel like it).



So level of character really doesn't affect this table? I rolled up a Paladin (S 15, I 12, W 13, D 12, C 13, Ch 17) but a Str 15 doesn't really do anything besides affect lifitng, carrying, etc.?

Do stats go up at all like d20 systems or higher level effect a better chance of hitting enemies?

Edit: bear with me, i played 2e over 15 years ago a few times and it wasn't exactly a pleasant experience. My D&D exposure has been pretty exclusive to WotC's 3.X, 4e, and 5e so even THAC0 is still alien. If I remember correctly it was basically 3e's Base Attack Bonus system with a (subtract 20) from your roll added in.
Thauramarth Posted - 11 Nov 2017 : 22:14:25
quote:
Originally posted by Diffan

So I got copies of AD&D 1e PHB, DMG, and the Monster Manual and Im just completely baffled. I got, to a point, character creation down but every thing tied to combat, Initiative, attack matrices is all very confusing. Is there a To-Hit system? I see the table for weapons and such with the AC and attack rolls but what does that mean?

Ah, the attack tables. The attack matrix is bascially the "To hit" system. The attack matrix will indicate which value you need on the d20 roll to hit a particular AC. This corresponds pretty much exactly to 2nd Edition's THAC0. Apply bonuses and maluses for strength, magical bonuses, etc.

The Weapons tables - everyone's favourite bit in AD&D 1st edition. Right - the weapons tables. Gygax & Co developed a detailed matrix of how good particular weapons were versus particular types of armor. The +x / -y of a weapon versus a particular type of armor is the bonus or malus of that weapon. Apply to the D20 roll. Easy, peasy, lemon squeezy (except it's not,really )

AD&D's 2nd Edition's THAC0 approach simplified the combat system soooooo much. You can use the THAC0 system, gleefully ignore the weapons tables, and be done with it (unless you feel like it).
Diffan Posted - 11 Nov 2017 : 11:38:34
So I got copies of AD&D 1e PHB, DMG, and the Monster Manual and Im just completely baffled. I got, to a point, character creation down but every thing tied to combat, Initiative, attack matrices is all very confusing. Is there a To-Hit system? I see the table for weapons and such with the AC and attack rolls but what does that mean?
froglegg Posted - 08 Nov 2015 : 03:19:10
quote:
Originally posted by Dalor Darden

I really like the simplicity of BECMI for sure!

I'm just stuck in AD&D...


Nothing wrong with that.




John
Dalor Darden Posted - 07 Nov 2015 : 03:56:50
I really like the simplicity of BECMI for sure!

I'm just stuck in AD&D...
froglegg Posted - 17 Oct 2015 : 23:07:27
Also the Grey Box with B/X rules with the B/X Companion or BECM would rock too!




John
froglegg Posted - 24 Apr 2011 : 06:14:52
((Bump))
froglegg Posted - 01 Aug 2010 : 14:17:49
Dalor Darden thanks for your kind words. I think it just depends on just what she wants to do and just where she wants to go. And thanks for taking the time to go look.

John
Dalor Darden Posted - 01 Aug 2010 : 04:18:24
Looks fun! I wondered, like the other poster in your forum, how she would handle the tougher fights.

Easily enough: Zhentil Keep is full of fodder...and she has not only a Charm Person spell, but looks too!

Easy enough to find an even willing sellsword to act as a meat shield!
froglegg Posted - 01 Aug 2010 : 03:55:16
Here is mine that just started. What do you think?

http://www.dragonsfoot.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=26&t=44334

Thank you for looking.

John
froglegg Posted - 30 Jul 2010 : 20:18:02
quote:
Originally posted by Jorkens

quote:
Originally posted by Dalor Darden

To me, there is nothing better than the simplicity of 1st Edition.




I have some pretty warm feelings for the D&D game too (for me that's the Mentzer and Cyclopaedia editions). In many ways the looseness of the system and the archetype structures fit even better there.


Nothing is as freeing as flying by the seat of your pants gaming!
So I will say I am +1 with what Jorkens ha said.

John
Thauramarth Posted - 30 Jul 2010 : 12:27:55
Ah, the heady days of 1st Edition... I'll be the first to admit that I like tinkering with stats and classes and come up with "killer kombos", but it is very true that the (relatively) rules-light approach of 1E (and OD&D before and in parallel with that) made for some more freewheeling development. Same thing in OD&D and 2E. I play a hybrid based mostly on 2E these days, but still... reminiscence of the simpler days. Plus, it also reduced the conscientious objection against killing off player characters, as you could get a new one up and running in under ten minutes ;

In 3E, I get the impression (only an impression - I am ready to be corrected) that if a player says, "I'd like my fighter to a buccaneer-type character", someone will say "OK, where's the prestige class for that?"
Jorkens Posted - 30 Jul 2010 : 12:09:26
quote:
Originally posted by Dalor Darden

To me, there is nothing better than the simplicity of 1st Edition.




I have some pretty warm feelings for the D&D game too (for me that's the Mentzer and Cyclopaedia editions). In many ways the looseness of the system and the archetype structures fit even better there.

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