Anyone roll ability scores btb?

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slimykuotoan
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Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by slimykuotoan »

btb = by the book

I'm currently playing an 'old school' C&C game with a few members here, and we went btb (3d6) when rolling ability scores. It's been a blast.
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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by tylermo »

I generally haven't. Usually the roll 4d6/subtract the lowest method. Since last year's campaign started, most of my players started at 2nd level. That's not always a given for me. Sometimes we start at 1st.

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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Treebore »

I let my players generate their ability scores however they wish, even just assign all 18's if that is what they want. Or roll 3d6. I just want my players to be playing a character they like.
Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by alcyone »

slimykuotoan wrote:btb = by the book

I'm currently playing an 'old school' C&C game with a few members here, and we went btb (3d6) when rolling ability scores. It's been a blast.
Yes, I've done it often.

However, it makes the game much deadlier in the face of saving throws. I should pull out the save charts from the various D&D games and compare, but I suspect low average scores in C&C are much more likely to outright kill you in a save-or-die situation on a non-prime. Not to mention, any class abilities based on scores.

I like how Tree does it. I find it interesting how little people choose straight 18s even though there is no reverse psychology at work here.
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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Treebore »

Aergraith wrote: I find it interesting how little people choose straight 18s even though there is no reverse psychology at work here.
I've had two or three people try all 18's, not be be munchers or a power gamer, just to see what it felt like. One thing I've learned in all my years of running games, its just as easy for me to kill a PC with all 18's as it is to kill a PC with all 9's. The hardest part of running a game, is to make it a "fair" challenge. Which, to me, means, they have a very real chance of dying, but if they are smart and lucky enough, will live far more often than not. Which I actually find harder to do at higher levels, because just one bad/failed roll versus that Poison spell or Disintegrate spell, etc... will kill you, which is why I added my Luck Point rules.
Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
Sounds obvious to me! -Gm Michael

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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Captain_K »

With PCs rolling scores, I like 4d6 drop lowest and arrange as you see fit... usually not the most heroic stuff, but could get lucky.

Lately, I like to give them the option to use the random dice roller site (see below) and hit "roll" many times until they get one no higher than 30 or 32 PBE. This keeps the scores arranged and sort of random without the pure min/max of the Point Buy methods.

http://www.brockjones.com/dieroller/dice.htm

In our last event to show them how sucky rolls could be, the group rolled up 6 PCs... only one was "good" and tied the 30 PBE pre-generated score flights I had written out and laid on the table for them to use as a back up incase their rolling was not to their liking.

My belief is this is a fantasy game, Joe Normal 12, 9, 13, 7, 11, 10 is truly that, Joe Normal, he'll be home plowing the fields. Fantasy folks want to play Jose the Great 15, 9, 13, 11, 14, 12 or Just Plain Joe 17, 11, 17, 8, 13, 12.

So save the BTB for the NPCs, filler folks, but let the PCs be heroic..
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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by pawndream »

Depends on the players and the game, but I sometime go old school and do the 3d6 thing. The problem with this method is it tends to produce mostly average characters and, as others have pointed out, people play RPGs to play exceptional characters performing heroic deeds. For some, it is hard to get into a character if their stats are no better than Joe the Farmer.

For this reason, my preferred method is 4d6, drop lowest. It tends to produce slightly better than average characters who have 1 or 2 good ability scores.

In many games I also leave it up to the player, between 1 of 3 methods: 4d6 drop lowest, standard array, or point buy. They can choose whatever they want. Doesn't really matter to me.

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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Warunsun »

I allow my players as a group to choose between two methods: Table Array for the Campaign or Point Buy Individually. With a Table Array each player at the beginning of the campaign rolls 4d6 drop the lowest for one attribute roll. I record them on a master list. Then each player can arrange those scores as desired and then apply racial modifiers. So every player has the same base raw statistic numbers before modification and arrangement and are on even footing. As a group they could roll poorly or they could roll well. So far this method has worked out pretty decently. Since I offered it up they haven't opted for the Point Buy method. I haven't had individual players roll separately for statistics since early in Third Edition or perhaps the end of Second Edition. It just sucks when you are the only guy with a 13 as your maximum statistic and some guy has multiple 17's or 18's. I want folks to enjoy their characters and random rolls are used hugely in the game as is. We don't need a few bad random rolls at the beginning to poison the well for a year or more. :)
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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Litzen Tallister »

For C&C, I go for 3d6, rolled six times, then applied to whichever abilities the individual would like. I also allow plea to CK in the case of horrendous scores (e.g., nothing higher than a 9). I like it for C&C as it's easy to make characters as a group and therefore monitor for fudging. In our latest D&D campaign, we're using the Standard Array method (which is very much like the Table Array, which also sounds like a good way of generating stats), since character creation is more involved and tends to require characters made in advance (and therefore opens the option of re-rolling until getting the 'right' numbers). That way, it's easy to make sure someone's using a legit set of stats.

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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Arduin »

slimykuotoan wrote:btb = by the book

I'm currently playing an 'old school' C&C game with a few members here, and we went btb (3d6) when rolling ability scores. It's been a blast.
Naw, I let them use 74 points (which equals 4D6 drop lowest) assign as desired; 3 min, 18 max. This works really well when all players are starting and they want to create a group with all the archetypes represented.
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slimykuotoan
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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by slimykuotoan »

Arduin wrote:Naw, I let them use 74 points (which equals 4D6 drop lowest) assign as desired; 3 min, 18 max...
I might try this.
For crying out loud, do what you can with the attributes the dice have given you. This is what separates the men from the boys... -Kayolan

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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Kayolan »

I like the btb 3d6 style best. High stats are memorable, and the players focus less on their attribute scores and more on decision making. I don't agree that a character with average attributes is "average" as far as the common populace goes. Just being a classed character makes one above average in my world. The players in my 3d6 group have been doing very heroic things indeed, so I don't think it matters that much if you don't have a +1 or +2 on a given attribute. And if a character does have an 18 in something, he is going to truly be memorable for that stat and not have it be just another 18 that half the party members also have.

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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Arduin »

slimykuotoan wrote:
Arduin wrote:Naw, I let them use 74 points (which equals 4D6 drop lowest) assign as desired; 3 min, 18 max...
I might try this.
It's nice to be able to create a PC that you envision without going munchkin.
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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by serleran »

Way back when the game was in design phase, yes, to see how the rules worked as written. After that, not so much because it doesn't matter.

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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Jyrdan Fairblade »

I’ve also long been a fan of 4d6, drop the lowest. That being said, I really like D&D 5e’s standard array system, because you always have to make that choice “what stat do I put that 8 in?” That and there’s no way for players to fudge and reroll a stat.

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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Arduin »

Jyrdan Fairblade wrote: That being said, I really like D&D 5e’s standard array system, because you always have to make that choice “what stat do I put that 8 in?”
Weird to have a system that forces every adventurer to have a below average stat at the same value. Random would be better than cookie cutter.
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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Snoring Rock »

Kayolan wrote:I like the btb 3d6 style best. High stats are memorable, and the players focus less on their attribute scores and more on decision making. I don't agree that a character with average attributes is "average" as far as the common populace goes. Just being a classed character makes one above average in my world. The players in my 3d6 group have been doing very heroic things indeed, so I don't think it matters that much if you don't have a +1 or +2 on a given attribute. And if a character does have an 18 in something, he is going to truly be memorable for that stat and not have it be just another 18 that half the party members also have.
+1

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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Treebore »

I basically got to the point of realizing the character is the PLAYERS character, not mine, so I let them "build it" however they wish. I give some suggestions, but as anyone here knows, who has played in my games, you get to make your character precisely how you wish to, by picking Class, Race, Sex, and even selecting what attributes you want, or which method you determine them by.

I've now gotten to the point where I do not understand why such an important character aspect was ever taken out of the "hands" of the players, and effectively put under the control of the CK/GM/DM, or random luck. I much prefer knowing my players will definitely be happy playing the character they will be playing.
Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
Sounds obvious to me! -Gm Michael

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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by pawndream »

Treebore wrote:I basically got to the point of realizing the character is the PLAYERS character, not mine, so I let them "build it" however they wish. I give some suggestions, but as anyone here knows, who has played in my games, you get to make your character precisely how you wish to, by picking Class, Race, Sex, and even selecting what attributes you want, or which method you determine them by.

I've now gotten to the point where I do not understand why such an important character aspect was ever taken out of the "hands" of the players, and effectively put under the control of the CK/GM/DM, or random luck. I much prefer knowing my players will definitely be happy playing the character they will be playing.
My thoughts exactly. While some players do enjoy the challenge of playing whatever the dice happen to churn up, many more players have a pretty specific idea about how they want to spend their precious free time in imaginary worlds. It sucks to come to a game expecting one thing and getting something altogether different just because the dice won't cooperate.

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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Treebore »

pawndream wrote:
Treebore wrote:I basically got to the point of realizing the character is the PLAYERS character, not mine, so I let them "build it" however they wish. I give some suggestions, but as anyone here knows, who has played in my games, you get to make your character precisely how you wish to, by picking Class, Race, Sex, and even selecting what attributes you want, or which method you determine them by.

I've now gotten to the point where I do not understand why such an important character aspect was ever taken out of the "hands" of the players, and effectively put under the control of the CK/GM/DM, or random luck. I much prefer knowing my players will definitely be happy playing the character they will be playing.
My thoughts exactly. While some players do enjoy the challenge of playing whatever the dice happen to churn up, many more players have a pretty specific idea about how they want to spend their precious free time in imaginary worlds. It sucks to come to a game expecting one thing and getting something altogether different just because the dice won't cooperate.
Well, that is why I leave it completely up to them. If they like and want the challenge of rolling 3D6, they are free to do so. The only person I recall ever doing that was Rhuvein. I don't think he has done it since, but its not something I've tried to remember either, character creation is my players concern, not mine.
Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
Sounds obvious to me! -Gm Michael

Grand Knight Commander of the Society.

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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by alcyone »

Treebore wrote: I've now gotten to the point where I do not understand why such an important character aspect was ever taken out of the "hands" of the players, and effectively put under the control of the CK/GM/DM, or random luck. I much prefer knowing my players will definitely be happy playing the character they will be playing.
Since C&C doesn't have class or race ability minimums and maximums, I don't think there is much reason to not at least allow a generous point buy, if not just as Treebore suggests; pick your scores. Also, it's much less likely in C&C that your scores will ever improve unless your house rules or magic item availability allows for it.

Even in AD&D where there are minimums, few people ever had the patience to wait out the dice to get the character they wanted to play.

In AD&D it was probably a pre-emptive balancing mechanic to ensure the core roles were covered and keep the whole table from playing specialists, but time has shown that probably wasn't necessary. In OD&D your scores barely mattered so the randomization probably just carried over from wargames (though, come to think of it, in wargames a tank is a tank, a soldier is a soldier, so maybe not.)
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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Rhuvein »

I'm fine with btb for rolls, we did in the early days of C&C and would do it again in a ftf game.

For online gaming, I prefer house rules that allow for higher scores.
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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Geoffrey McKinney »

Both as a referee and as a player, I prefer 3d6 in order, set in stone. You haven't lived until you've played a wizard with a 3 intelligence.

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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Lord Dynel »

My house rules state 3d6, 12 times, take the best six. That's how I've ran my past two campaigns.

My next one, I'm considering 3d6 in order. My first time running I used RAW and it worked fine.

I agree with Tree somewhat, in that it's just as easy to kill a character with all 18s as it is with any other scores. Where I differ, though, is that I think scores do matter. I think that if a player rolls a 16, 17, or 18 (heck, even a 14 or 15 when using 3d6!) that should be an exciting event. It really gives that PC the feel that he is better than the common rabble. But that's how I usually envision my games. My GM'ing philosophy when it comes to characters is that they are, in fact, usually cut from the same cloth as everyone else. Everyone has the same opportunity to pick up a sword and go slay goblins as anyone else. And I think that's okay - you don't have to have all 18s, or two or three 15+ scores to be a hero. Your actions should define you as such. But roll a couple 13s or higher on 3d6 and that PC really is something else, someone a bit more than the common folk.

4d6 dropping lowest, point buys, or other systems that either allow high scores (by allowing you to take lower scores elsewhere) or make the "random" roll gravitate towards higher scores are fine for others, but I like the rolling attributes that put characters about on par with everyone else. Some will have flaws, some will be a bit better than normal. Then I start the campaign and let their adventures really mean something. :)

I like the method I use (a quick roll up got my best six as 15, 12, 10, 10, 9, 8) and it has stood up pretty well. I'm itching to try RAW again.
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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Buttmonkey »

Tree has me intrigued. I use luck points (everyone gets 5 per session, they don't roll over between sessions). The next time one of my players rolls up a PC, I may give him/her the option to select whatever stats they want in exchange for foregoing luck points. Hmm...
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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Jyrdan Fairblade »

Hahahah, indeed! We did a completely random race/class, 3d6 roll in order game once. I think I played a wild mage with 2 HP and some of the worst spell choices ever.
Geoffrey McKinney wrote:Both as a referee and as a player, I prefer 3d6 in order, set in stone. You haven't lived until you've played a wizard with a 3 intelligence.

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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Rigon »

I did a btb attribute score game once. I, as the CK, didn't like it. On average, the PC's attributes were a detriment to the game. I prefer my heroes to be heroic. That stars with attributes. Now I use 4d6 drop the lowest, roll 7 times and drop the lowest score, arrange as desired.

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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Arduin »

The use of 3D6 made sense back when classes had minimum attribute requirements. It kept the class population ratios at certain levels. With the ditching those rules, the rational is also gone for 3D6 only rolls.
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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by Treebore »

Lord Dynel wrote:My house rules state 3d6, 12 times, take the best six. That's how I've ran my past two campaigns.

My next one, I'm considering 3d6 in order. My first time running I used RAW and it worked fine.

I agree with Tree somewhat, in that it's just as easy to kill a character with all 18s as it is with any other scores. Where I differ, though, is that I think scores do matter. I think that if a player rolls a 16, 17, or 18 (heck, even a 14 or 15 when using 3d6!) that should be an exciting event. It really gives that PC the feel that he is better than the common rabble. But that's how I usually envision my games. My GM'ing philosophy when it comes to characters is that they are, in fact, usually cut from the same cloth as everyone else. Everyone has the same opportunity to pick up a sword and go slay goblins as anyone else. And I think that's okay - you don't have to have all 18s, or two or three 15+ scores to be a hero. Your actions should define you as such. But roll a couple 13s or higher on 3d6 and that PC really is something else, someone a bit more than the common folk.

4d6 dropping lowest, point buys, or other systems that either allow high scores (by allowing you to take lower scores elsewhere) or make the "random" roll gravitate towards higher scores are fine for others, but I like the rolling attributes that put characters about on par with everyone else. Some will have flaws, some will be a bit better than normal. Then I start the campaign and let their adventures really mean something. :)

I like the method I use (a quick roll up got my best six as 15, 12, 10, 10, 9, 8) and it has stood up pretty well. I'm itching to try RAW again.
Like I said, if the players WANT that excitement, they are free to roll 3d6 whenever they want. The characters are about THEM, not what I, the CK, thinks it should be. So I let my players decide how they do everything about creating their character. After character creation, its pretty much all me and what I decide, so my players get full control of their PC creation. Typically, 95% of the time, if not more often, they use my suggested methods, because when it gets down to it, players want to know they aren't going to have sucky attributes. Which is fine, like I said earlier, I want my players to play a character they KNOW they will at least like, if not really enjoy. So giving them full control over their attribute generation is the least I can do as their CK/GM/DM. After all, it is THEIR character, not the CK's. We get all the NPC's, and we can create them however we wish.
Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
Sounds obvious to me! -Gm Michael

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Re: Anyone roll ability scores btb?

Post by serleran »

I'm getting partial to Amber's auction system. Each player has to decide if they want to be the strongest, smartest, most enthralling, etc of the group and then, if someone else says they also want to be that, it comes down to what the other gives up. The larger the sacrifice, the more you get.

Kinda neat.

Not intended for normal archetype play but could be fun to try.

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