Ability Rolls

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wynteriii
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Ability Rolls

Post Fri Sep 20, 2013 1:00 pm

So has does your group handle "skill checks/ability rolls" if you even have them.
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Dimirag
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Re: Ability Rolls

Post Fri Sep 20, 2013 1:28 pm

Until i finish my open skill system i would rule as follows:
Att check: roll d20 under att score
Skills: use the alternate rule with full level for direct skills, half level for simple skills and no level benefit for open skills.
Sorry for any misspelling or writing error, I am not a native English speaker
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Maliki
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Re: Ability Rolls

Post Fri Sep 20, 2013 6:18 pm

There is a section in the core rules (pages 141-142 of release 78) that deals with ability rolls.
wynteriii
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Re: Ability Rolls

Post Mon Sep 23, 2013 2:38 pm

Here is an example,

An adventure fell into a spiked pit after I had him roll a saving throw and he rolled a two. The group decided to through some rope and pull him out. This adventurer is a heavy dwarf who is wearing heavy armor so I wanted an ability roll for strength. That would mean that one would have to roll 17 or higher with D20+Str bonus/penalty. No one could alone so I gave a +1 bonus for every helping adventurer.

I started thinking that 17 is a bit high but realized that these are level 1 PC's. Still green behind the ears in adventuring so they will fail on a regular basis if not die.

This seems to work out.
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Joe the Rat
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Re: Ability Rolls

Post Mon Sep 23, 2013 3:07 pm

Here's a question: Is there a reason why a higher level character would be significantly better at lifting a heavy weight?

The ability roll mechanic is good for addressing skill-like actions (knowledge of esoteric lore, ability to hunt up enough food for a day, make repairs to a wagon). These are the sorts of things that characters would probably get better at as they go up in level.

Sometimes you need to represent something that is a sheer raw ability test - no skill involved. The classic example is breaking down a door: A 1 in 6 (or 1 in 10, or 1 in 20 depending on how stuck/locked the door is), with your odds improved by your ability modifier*. This can be generalized to any Feat of Strength (or other abilities, though I'm having trouble with a Feat of Wisdom example). So like 1in6, plus the best strength modifier, with another modifier for multiple pullers?

OR you could see if the party has the carrying capacity to lift him, and use that to determine if they can collectively pull his sorry metal hinder out of the pit, or need to resort to block and tackle.

* - As an aside, the way I run this is that success requires the maximum value on the die being used, but you add your ability modifier to it. So a 1 in 6 challenge needs a 6 or better. With a +2 ability modifier, a roll of 4+ will succeed.
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Dimirag
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Re: Ability Rolls

Post Mon Sep 23, 2013 8:55 pm

I would compare the dwarf weight with the pullin characters strength. If tje dwarf weights more than the limit make a str roll. A d20 equal or less under the pulling char str.
Sorry for any misspelling or writing error, I am not a native English speaker
Drawing portfolio: https://www.instagram.com/martin.dimirag/
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Gold
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Re: Ability Rolls

Post Tue Oct 15, 2013 3:51 am

I do not use the scaled-by-level "ability roll mechanic" that's in BFRPG. My campaign is taking place at only 1st-5th level, which will take a very long time (many sessions of game play, full duration of campaign). I don't see the need to scale or improve it by level.

So I just use, what I think are "standard" or traditional ability checks.

EXAMPLE, Dexterity check.
  • The player says "I walk carefully along the narrow ledge".
  • GM replies, "Roll a Dexterity check. Remember try to roll low, and roll under your Dexterity score. You get a -2 bonus as you tip-toe carefully along."
  • Player rolls d20, and announces "I rolled a 15, minus 2 for the bonus makes 13. My Dexterity is a 16 so I made it easily."
  • GM replies, "You got across the ledge no problem."
  • Player: "Cool. I hop off the other end."
EXAMPLE 2, Dexterity check,
  • The player says "I run across the narrow ledge, leaping to stab at the mountain lion".
  • GM replies, "Roll a Dexterity check at +4 because that's a difficult maneuver. Try to roll low, under your Dexterity score."
That's about the range of bonuses or penalties I will apply, subjectively, on-the-fly, as the player announces what they want to do. Maybe a -2 or -1 bonus, maybe a +2 or +4 penalty if it's really heroic and almost outlandish. If no check is needed, we never use this --- if it's a standard action they can easily accomplish (no check), or an insane impossible action that the GM rules out (no check). We will use the Ability check If the GM deems that some dice-rolling would be fun, and help give the player a feeling of chance and doing it themselves -- then I will call for the ability roll that best matches the situation.

We've used all 6 ability scores for "ability checks" at various times. It's often a situation where ONE PC can help the whole party -- so this is a way to give that one player who has the best Charisma, or the best Wisdom, a chance to make a good roll, sometimes.

In my view, players LOVE the ability scores they rolled up, and which I let them "assign" to the abilities as they like. Having them roll directly against those ability scores is simple, engaging, rewarding, and sometimes helps the players express their personality.

When the roll is a success, I let the Player describe how they "stick the landing". When the roll is a failure, it's not a disaster, it's just an occasion for the GM to change the flow of the action in an unexpected way. It adds to the fun. We've never had a problem with this kind of ability checks, so the alternative solutions to it haven't been needed yet in my low level games.
Mhogrymm
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Re: Ability Rolls

Post Fri Oct 18, 2013 6:09 pm

I used to use the BFRPG default, and liked it a lot but I really don't think it puts enough weight into the abilities. Though the standard under on a d20 puts to much.

I like the multiple d6 approach to ability checks. 2d6 for easy, 3d6 for average and 4d6 for difficult. It seems to me if abilities were rolled with d6s then the checks should be made using them. High dice always fail and low dice always succeed. The standard +2 to -2 modifier given in B/X doesn't seem to put quite enough weight on difficulty for me.

I like modifying by levels as well. I think it makes since that if Bulgar the Barbarian has seen and done enough to get to 10th level he should have an edge on doing things, even lifting. Weight lifting is not just a matter of raw strength, it is balance, knowing when to shift. I could be just as strong as Brian Shaw and not nearly as effective because I haven't lifted all the crazy weight he has.
saskganesh
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Re: Ability Rolls

Post Tue Nov 05, 2013 2:10 pm

I've abandoned roll under as a mechanism so everything is now roll high.

Use d20+Ability score=20+ = success.

No level bonuses. Situation modifiers always in play, which can go -5/-10/ or more for hard, very hard, crazy hard etc. Magnitude of failure depends on the roll and the situation

If they have to make a saving throw because of some hopefully entertaining complication, that's when their level comes into play.
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3rd year of GMing BFRPG on the Savea Costa. Now back to a six player table.
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The Angry Monk
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Re: Ability Rolls

Post Tue Jul 05, 2016 12:16 pm

saskganesh wrote:I've abandoned roll under as a mechanism so everything is now roll high.

Use d20+Ability score=20+ = success.

No level bonuses. Situation modifiers always in play, which can go -5/-10/ or more for hard, very hard, crazy hard etc. Magnitude of failure depends on the roll and the situation

If they have to make a saving throw because of some hopefully entertaining complication, that's when their level comes into play.
I like this. Simple and clean.
“It was written I should be loyal to the nightmare of my choice.”
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