PDB-6 is a point-distribution based, no-class, no-level, DM-heavy RPG system with a very light learning curve. It only uses six-sided dices, and all the rules can be summarized in a couple of pages. I design the system for casual games with gamers and newbies. The system is highly modifiable and can be used for a variety of settings from Star Wars to fallout to expanse.
The game is mainly designed for short, high risk (lower hit points/easier character death) games and it borrows elements from GURPS, D&D, The OpenD6, Fate and Shadowrun systems. Players can create a character in minutes (after learning the rules) making it possible for them to create new characters in the same session right after the unfortunate (but quite possible) demise of the previous one. On a side note: I urge GMs to think about the ways to integrate these new characters into the game without much metagaming.
Overall, the system is more suitable for one-shots or short games, but longer campaigns are also very viable (I have done many). GMs must discuss all aspects of the rules (they are more of a guideline) before the game (session 0) to prevent possible misunderstandings/frustrations as the material is not that text heavy. This is not a game designed to please RAW fetishists and rules lawyers.
Simply put, players roll one or more D6s (six-sided dices) to figure out if they are successful whenever they make an attempt (attack, skill, power etc.). Each roll with 4 or more is considered as a success. If the number of successes is at least equal to the difficulty of the attempt, the result is successful. The number of the D6 rolls determined by the character (skills, feats).
Whenever I give information relevant only to the game master, I started with GM and a colon (GM:) and it is written in italic.
The character sheet will be used as a rules guide. You will use it a lot. Print them for offline gaming.
GM (game master): Determine the level of characters depending on the story and reward players with points stated in the table blow (also on character sheet P1: upper middle) accordingly. You may reward players with separate points to proficiencies and/or equipment depending on the setting/game style (for example 20 to distribute + 1 free proficiency + 1 free exceptional equipment).
|Starting Level||Low||Med||High||V. High||Epic|
Write down your name along with the name of the character (character sheet P1: upper left). Then distribute points (rewarded by GM) to the skills (middle left) and the feats (middle right). Feats are optional. You do not have to spend all your points and you can keep some (for emergencies) to decide later as hidden talents or as moments of fate.
GM: Max number of points kept free should not be higher than one tenth of starting points (1 to 5) unless you are going for a mystery/amnesia kind of a game.
Skill distribution will be based on skills/value table (below and on character sheet P1: upper right). You can only spend exactly indicated values to obtain skill levels which determines your chance to succeed in a related check by altering the number of dices you roll. You probably will distribute the most of your points to the skills. Whenever you gain points you may use them to improve the skill level (bu spending the difference between the aimed level and the current level)
Fill the skills section (middle right) by using values of the skills corresponding to the skill level.
Value represents the number of six-sided dices you will roll for a skill check (i.e., if you are an apprentice of the skill then the value is 3 and the player should roll three D6s). Since each roll gives you a chance for success, thus more value is better. Values also may influence main stats such as Life or Stamina.
Except for doctor, computer, electronics and power you can roll one dice for a skill even if you have no skill level (the value of untrained is 1).
Melee: Hand-to-hand (melee and unarmed) combat capabilities. Kicking, punching, swordplay. Parrying opponents’ attacks, grappling, tripping and disarming.
Endurance: Physical fitness, raw strength, fortitude and constitution. Attempts of lifting, pushing, pulling and breaking something. Climbing, jumping and swimming skills. Determines Life and Stamina values. Provides defense against diseases, toxins, poisons, hunger, tiredness and physical traumas.
Survival: Skills required to survive in harsh environments. Tracking, hunting, skinning, animal-handling, pathfinding, setting up/disabling traps, knowing what to eat, how to find water and how to survive in extreme conditions (lack of gravity, heat, nutrition etc). General knowledge regarding the geography, weather and nature.
Perception: General awareness of your surroundings and the keenness of your senses. How well you see, hear, smell etc. Used for detecting hidden enemies/objects, spotting the unnoticeable and hearing the quiet.
Ranged: Effectiveness in firearm combat. A measure of your aim and ranged combat capabilities. Throwing sharp objects or explosives.
GM: Since different weapons have different optimal ranges (shotguns: close to medium, sniper rifles: far), attacks should suffer from disadvantage when not fired from the optimal range. It is also disadvantageous to fire a gun in a melee range, especially if the opponent is fighting via melee weapons.
Agility: Quickness, reflexes, initiative and overall hand-eye coordination. Attempts of balancing and performing acrobatic stunts. Provides defense against traps and projectiles.
Reasoning: Ability to reveal true intentions. Analytic and critical thinking. Understanding the whole by looking into pieces, reading clues from objects or people and remembering past knowledge. Represents will power and provides defense against negative effects on mind like fear, rage and lust as well as the effects of some mind-effecting drugs.
Doctor*: Performing first-aid, treating wounds or illnesses, administrating drugs and performing small-scale operations.
Computers*: Using computers. Hacking terminals, cyborg parts, robots, vehicles, weapons etc. Effectively accessing databases and social network profiles.
Electronics*: Maintaining, repairing or manipulating electronic circuits, nodes and boards of tools, devices, vehicles and weapons. Bypassing locks and computer controls, redirecting power and short-circuiting.
Diplomacy: Convincing someone of something via social graces, arguments, good nature and/or intimidation. Gathering information by mingling with locals. Exhibiting proper etiquette and leaving a good or a fearsome overall impression via words and actions.
Deception: Skills required to survive in slums or as spies. Sleight of hands, concealing or fast drawing a weapon, stealthy movement, using disguises, distracting an opponent, trickery and lying. Knowing how to smuggle. Hiding the truth of words or actions.
Feats are optional and modifies characters in a specific way for specialization purposes. Points required to spend to obtain feats are given within parentheses.
Strong (6pts): The values of following skills are increased by 1: melee, endurance and survival.
Dexterous (10pts): The values of following skills are increased by 1: survival, perception, ranged, agility, doctor and (non-verbal) deception.
Smart (10pts): The values of following skills are increased by 1: reasoning, doctor, computers, electronics, diplomacy and deception.
Focus (5pts): Focus grants +1 rolls to specific checks of one skill (such as using sniper rifles for ranged skill checks, pushing people with telekinesis, performing acrobatic stunts with agility, utilizing endurance for defense) or to checks of multiple skills in a specific condition (such as multiple skill checks against a favored enemy, in a favored terrain or whenever your life is low). Focus can be customized to meet various needs: focusing on knives may give bonuses to both ranged and melee, focusing on dialogue may affect multiple related skill checks (deception, diplomacy, perception, reasoning).
Powers (6pts): You gain a power (such as teleportation, phasing, elemental control, energy/sonic blast, invisibility, telepathy, telekinesis, shapeshifting, transmorphing). Choose to power you desire and add this power as a skill to your skill list. You are going to have to spend points on that skill to earn skill levels. Powers may inflict harm (life/action/sanity/stamina loss) or improve defense (see: main stats).
When you choose a power, you must first discuss it with the GM and agree on how that power works. It will depend on the setting as well as the balance of the game. If you are playing in a superhero setting, becoming Hulk or Thor will be possible via this mechanic.
GM: In certain settings you may want to (you don't have to) limit the number of times that the power can be used. It can be indicated as per rest as usual for RPG games, but it can also be indicated as "per encounter" (ensuring a more frequent use) or you may utilize both. Value of the power skill could be used to determine the number of uses. For example, a character with apprentice level of telekinesis may have 3 per encounter (for less powerful effects) and 3 per rest (for more powerful effects) uses. You may also award the players with free power uses whenever they roll very high. For example: A player rolls 3 successes in a case where 1 success was enough, so it doesn't spend from her per-encounter (or per day) quota. If all the uses are depleted you may prohibit the player from using the skill or let her use it by taking a stamina damage.
Traits (6pts): You gain a passive ability or attribute such as appendages (wings, tails, claws), resistance (disease, physical, poison, elemental, energy, radiation etc.), regeneration, enhanced senses (vision, scent, tremor, hearing). Choose the trait when you choose this feat.
Appendages will give you… Well, appendages. This may help you carry out more restricted actions (like an extra attack action) in a turn or improve related skills by providing advantage (see skill checks). Resistances increase the defense (+1 or +2) against selected effect. Regeneration lets you regain lost life (exact number/hour or turn will be determined by the GM depending on the setting). Enhanced senses provide perception advantage (see skill checks) and lets you sense your surroundings in situations you normally cannot (such as pitch-black darkness).
GM: You may let players create their own traits as long as they are on the same levels as the ones above. These traits may be a result of a mutation, genetic modification, alien blood or super serum as well as a normal attribute of a species depending on the setting.
Resistance: Defense bonus is +1 for common and +2 for rare types of harm. In regular settings (where the primary damage type is physical) this corresponds to + 1 for physical and +2 for everything else. However, if the setting is more like Star Wars, then the bonus could be +1 for energy and +2 for everything else.
Drawbacks (-5pts): Drawbacks grants you 2 (weak) or 5 points (sluggish, dim-witted) to min/max your character by sacrificing skills you are not planning to use.
Weak: decreases the value of melee, endurance and survival by 1.
Sluggish: decreases the value of survival, perception, ranged, agility, doctor and (non-verbal) deception by 1.
Dim-witted: decreases the value of reasoning, doctor, computers, electronics, diplomacy and deception by 1.
If the value drops to 0 because of this feat, you cannot make checks with that skill. Do not pick this if this is your first game. You cannot have 0 endurance.
Proficiency (2pts): Proficiencies lets you use an equipment or perform a complex task with one of your skills or expand a skill beyond its traditional uses. Knowledge of a subject (such as history of a species or quantum mechanics) via reasoning (or another relevant skill), proficiency in using a device (such as a lockpick or an electronic disguise set) via deception (or another relevant skill), operating a vehicle (such as a spacecraft or a mech) via perception, agility (or another relevant skill), performing a job (such as legal counselling, poetry or dance) via a relevant skills or speaking a language. Speaking a language does not require a skill check.
GM: If a proficiency is very internal to your game (such as flying a spacecraft in a space opera), then make it s separate skill instead of a proficiency.
A proficiency also lets characters use a skill (melee, ranged, doctor etc.) with a complex equipment or for complex procedures. For example: since melee/ranged skills are very general, some weapons (lightsabers or phasers) may require proficiency just to be able to use them with related skill. Similarly, a procedure may be too complex to be carried out via doctor, electronics or reasoning without a proficiency. Finally, a power-armor may be too complex to equip without a proficiency.
GM: This feature "tax", exists for balance reasons, and it may be ignored depending on the setting. Decide whether if it is fair for the character use the skill without a prerequisite and act accordingly.
You may select this feat more than once to receive multiple proficiencies.
Equipment (2, 5 or 10pts): This feat provides the character with an exceptional, elite or unique item depending on points spend. These items may improve skill checks by increasing the value by 1, 2 or 3. They may provide different types of defense (1, 2 or 3). It may also modify other stats as the GM sees fit (GM: consider game balance). However, if you choose not to be boring, these items can do much more than stat modifications. Think of it as magic items. Depending on your setting you can create cyborg enhancements, lightsaber, pip boy, jetpack, psionic lash, stun phasers and maybe even an arrow controlled by whistles. For the rest of equipment related content see: inventory and currency. You may select this feat more than once to receive more equipment.
The effects of skills/feats on the main stats are listed on the bottom (character sheet P1: middle and right).
Race and classes: Since there are no races/species/classes, you must create your own by choosing a combination of relevant skills and feats. For example, a Klingon might be strong while Vulcans are smart. Force could be a power for a Jedi, a Turian may have radiation-resistance trait, and a Zealot may possess psionic blades equipment. GM could (and should) help with this process. Since not everything is written, player and GM will work together to decide the best way to represent the character.
Skill check is the way of testing whether a character succeeded or failed in an attempt. Players roll the d6s and count the number of successes. A successful roll is 4, 5 or 6 (above 3). Count the number of successes [S]. Below and on the second page of character sheet there is a probability table (character sheet P2, upper left) listing probability of success for different skill and difficulty levels.
|Success/fail probability table|
|Difficulty Level||Number of rolls|
|Very Easy (1)||50%||75%||88%||94%||97%||98%||99%||100%|
|Very Difficult (5)||0%||0%||0%||0%||3%||11%||23%||36%|
|Near Impossible (6)||0%||0%||0%||0%||0%||2%||6%||14%|
Basically, if it is a very easy check, then the players need at least 1 success [S]. Similarly, you need 2 [S] for easy, 3 [S] for medium, 4 [S] for difficult, 5 [S] for very difficult, 6 [S] for near impossible and 7 [S] for impossible (it is not really impossible, just highly improbable).
You always roll D6 dices for a check. The number of (D6) dices you will roll for a check depends on the value of the skill as well as feats and other circumstances.
GM: Difficulty levels on the success/fail probability table will be used to determine in-game challenges. Only checks against one another (two hackers fighting via computer checks, attacking an opponent via laser rifle) will not use these table.
Vs Defense: If the character is using her skill in a way that would harm (life, stamina, sanity or action damage) another (PC or NPC), then the character makes a check (melee, ranged, hacking, power, etc. ) against a fixed defense value (instead of rolling against a difficulty level). Please see main stats section for more information.
Opposing checks: If two characters are competing one another via skill checks (like hackers fighting in cyberspace via computer or runners trying to beat the other via endurance), they both roll and the one with highest number of successes win. This also may cause harm.
Critical hit: A critical hit is rolling two sixes in a single check. It increases the the number of success by 1. For example lets say you are rolling for an apprentice check and you rolled: 6, 6, 2. Normally what you have is two successes (two dices are above 3) but it is counted as three successes because of the critical double six. Since multiple-sixes will be more common if you roll more dices, critical chance depends on the value (the level) of the skill. Naturally, you cannot score a critical hit if you are untrained in a skill as you only roll the dice once. You can have multiple criticals (with proficient level or more)
Critical failure: If all the dices rolled ones or you roll three ones in a single check, it is a critical failure. Besides failing, something bad might happen at GMs discretion. It is harder to have a critical failure in higher skill levels.
Advantage/Disadvantage: If there is an advantageous (such as attacking from an advantageous position or to a distracted opponent or having a password during a hack) or disadvantageous (wiring cables in the dark or trying to balance in a slippery surface) circumstance affecting the check, GM may reward players with one (single advantage) or two (double advantage) rolls or penalize players by decreasing the number of rolls by one (single disadvantage) or by two (double disadvantage). If there are zero rolls, it is an automatic failure.
5. Levelling up
During the game (if it is not a one-shot) you will receive points that you can spend to improve your character. You will do that by increasing the value of the skills and choosing new feats. Please consult the GM if your choice is appropriate.
GM: I tend to award players with at least one point at the end of each session. If a milestone has been reached or if they have accomplished something remarkable I reward them with two points instead. In some cases I also award MVPs. However this should be very rare and it should not upset other players. Try not to award a play-style (like by giving extra points to the DPS) but the team-players.
The points required to improve a skill from one level to another can be calculated via substracting the points spent from the points required.
6. Main stats
|Action||2 + 1 (being proficient in any one skill)|
|Life||Value of endurance|
|Sanity||Value of reasoning|
|Stamina||Value of endurance|
|Defense||Agility/2 + 0-3 (equipment) + 0 or 1 (trait) + 1 or [S]/2 (defensive action)|
Action: The number of things you can do in a turn such as attacking, moving to a position or using a skill (like a power). Characters begin with 2 actions. After becoming proficient in one skill (distributing at least 6 points to a skill) character receives another action (3 in total).
Action types: move, use a skill, ambush
Move: Moving 8-10 meters (4-5 squares). Moving through enemies or complex/difficult terrain may require an agility check.
Use a skill: Using skills require one or more actions depending on the complexity of the attempt. During combat, skills may bu used to harm/distract/cripple/pacify enemies, boost/heal teammates, overcome/create obstacles (unlocking a shortcut door to an escape route, sabotaging enemy vehicles). You may combine multiple skill checks into one action to save time (2 disadvantaged checks with 1 action) or you can combine multiple actions to one more guaranteed skill check (spend 2 actions for 1 double advantaged check). If you use your skill to harm an enemy, you roll against a fixed defense value or vs a skill of the enemy. If you score more successes than the enemy (or more than the defense) the harm will be inflicted. See defense part for more information.
Defensive action: You may spend one action to increase your defense until your next turn. Using covers, shields or similar equipment may increase your defence by 1 against projectiles. Skills may increase your defence by half of the successes ([S]/2) according to the result of a skill-check (agility for acrobatics/defensive maneuvers, melee for parrying or powers like the force or telekinesis). You may also use this action to support the defense of an ally (shielding via equipment or power, or providing covering fire via ranged).
Ambush: You may invest one action to set up an ambush with a skill (like: melee, ranged or power) which will triggered as a result of an action of an enemy (attacking you or an ally, leaving the cover, passing through the doorway etc.). You may only set up an ambush with a proficient (or higher) skill. When an ambush is triggered, it immediately happens (even if it is not your turn).
GM: An action is essentially something that takes 4-5 seconds to complete. An attack does not have to be a single strike, you may consider it a burst-fire or a flurry of blows for story-telling purposes. I usually let moving 8-10 meters (4-5 squares) per action. Dexterous players may move more. Complex activities like hacking or disabling a trap may require more than one action to complete. However, the goal must not be realism in this case as real-life hacking may not be fun to role-play. Therefore, you should go for a balanced but not so realistic middle ground. Players may complete such complex activities in multiple turns.
Increasing the actions. Powers (like a berserker rage which gives you an extra attack action), equipment (like a built in stimpack which would give you a bonus action) or circumstances (like a morale boost) may increase actions per turn. Think of the drawback though, maybe after the rage soldier passes out or the stimpack is extremely addictive. You may also think of action pools from which the character draws. An equipment or a power may provide an action pool (lets say of 4 actions) and players may use them in different turns (max 1 per turn).
Life: The value of damage a character can take before perishing. It is equal to the value of endurance. 0 is death. Players can be healed via doctor skill or with powers.
GM: Depending on the setting doctor skill may act as a magical healing (instant gain of life) or a more-realistic healing (life gain per rest). Number of successes [S] can determine the amount of gained life based on the setting. I would use [S]/2↓.
Life loss may cause other types of harms depending on the severity of the damage (cripple, bleed, action/stamina damage).
If you do not want to kill off your characters right away you may let them roll an endurance to avoid death.
Sanity: It is your mental hit points. Whenever you experience a mentally distressful event you suffer a sanity damage. If sanity becomes 0, you become completely insane.
GM: Reduce sanity by one after a terrifying/traumatizing event. You may let players avoid sanity loss if they can succeed a reasoning check. Players may gain their sanity back after a certain amount of time (or never) depending on the setting/circumstances. You may choose not to track it if your game does not include cosmic-horror, gothic or Lovecraftian elements. Some powers may cause sanity damage (and using some powers may cause sanity loss).
Stamina: You loose stamina after heavy labor, exertion or if you could not rest when you must. Each stamina loss increase your tiredness until you pass out due to exhaustion when stamina becomes 0. You can gain it back after resting.
GM: If you want a very simple game you may ignore stamina altogether. Just replace any harm to stamina with life loss.
If you are going to use it mind that each combat encounter may cause a stamina loss due to exhaustion. You may let players avoid stamina loss if they can succeed an endurance check. Being tired due to stamina damage may cause disadvantages to skill checks and may cause action loss as it represents fatigue. I usually go with one disadvantage per 2 damage, 1 action loss with per 3 damage.
Defense is how characters protect themselves from attacks which may cause life, stamina, sanity, action loss or others harms. Defense value depends on agility, equipment (armors) and traits (depending on the attack) is calculated as follows:
Defense = Agility/2↓ (0, 1, 2, 3...) + Equipment (0, 1, 2, 3) + Traits (0 or 1) + Defensive action (1 or [S]/2)
Whenever you attack, you make the check and if you beat your the enemies defense the harm is inflicted.
GM: You may also make custom defenses using whatever skill you see fit using a similar formula:
Defense = Skill/2↓ (0, 1, 2, 3...) + Equipment (0, 1, 2, 3) + Traits (0 or 1) + Defensive action (1 or [S]/2)
Equipment: armors, shields or different type of equipment may contribute to your defense depending on the situation. GM will inform you if the equipment you have can help you against the attack. Some equipment (like shields) may not contribute the defense passively and may require using a defensive action.
Traits: resistances (disease, physical, poison, elemental, energy, radiation etc.) may contribute to your defense if it is relevant to the effect which will harm you.
Defensive action: Powers (like telekinesis to deflect projectiles), melee (like parrying in a light saber duel) or other skills (including agility for acrobatics) may also improve your defense via defensive action if their effects can help you avoid the harm (see actions). Make a skill check and add [S]/2 to your defense.
Harms: There are different types of harms (which happen when the success of an attack surpasses the defense):
Life/action/stamina/sanity loss: If the attack is successful the target loses 1 life/action/stamina/sanity. Its always going to be 1 damage. The only exception is when the attacker beat the defender by 3 or more successes. In that case the target receives 2 damage instead of 1. (GM: think of this as a head-shot or a similar critical hit).
One damage is significant in this game, so tread carefully. It is a wound received after a struggle (like falling without a successful check, escaping from a burning building, getting hit by a slow car, surviving a serious bar brawl). You may also collect multiple instances causing smaller wounds into a single damage.
Other harms: Cripple (unable to use a limb), bleed (1 life loss/turn), confusion etc...
GM: Cripple or other harms may cause disadvantages or double disadvantages in skill checks. Confused/insane/enraged characters may not effectively be controlled by the player. You may create other harms depending on the situation.
GM: Initiative. I preferably do not use initiative rolls. If you must, then let them roll agility or their highest combat skill (melee or ranged). You may also let them use perception, reasoning and deception (or power if they posses a relevant one). I usually just determine the order based on the situation. I give dexterous characters an edge though. You may also let your players wait till the end of the turn to act.
Players complete their characters by creating their personality to direct their role-play. Instead of alignment (which I dislike greatly), I use conducts along with other personality traits. Personality features are listed below and on the character sheet P2, lower right.
|Curiosity, Wealth, Influence, Heroism, Self-betterment, Fame, Personal Achievement (___________________)|
for each row)
(choose 1 to 2)
|Self, Lover, Family, Friends, Organization, Faith/Entity,
Ethnics/Species, Life, Nature, Other: __________
(choose 1 to 3)
|Generous or selfish, Rational or emotional, Neat or untidy,
Progressive or traditionalist, Austere or hedonist,
Cheerful or melancholic, Kind or rude, Humble or arrogant, Racist or xenophilic, Spiritualist or materialist
Motivation: Why your character is out there adventuring? Choose one. This is more like a long-term goal, and it can even be something that your character pursues unaware. You may change this in game according to your experience and achievements. If the pre-existing motivations are too broad for you, you may write down your own specific motivation (saving my daughter, becoming a Star Fleet officer, freeing my people from the oppressor).
Conduct: This is the most important determinant of role play. This determines the way your charter reacts to different stimuli. Choose one for each row (three at total). Conduct is written as opposites, if you do not strongly tend towards one of the opposites, choose "neutral".
GM: The closest thing to “good and evil” in this game is “compassionate and cruel. You may use it if you need alignment to make your game work. If you need an evil scientist as BBEG? Curiosity, Neutral, Neutral, Cruel. You need a Joffrey? Influence, Neutral, Impulsive, Cruel
A couple of examples: Palpatine is cunning, prudent and cruel with influence motivation. Pickard is honorable, prudent and compassionate with curiosity motivation. Jack from mass effect is neutral, impulsive, neutral with a personal achievement (destroying Cerberus).
Bonds: These are what you feel attached to, may take risks and break your rules for. If you choose two, please determine the main one (so the GM can exploit it). You can write down details (like the name of the organization or faith) to the "Player Notes" part.
Defining characteristics: Other personality traits that might help to detail your characters personality. Choose up to three of those. Similar to the conduct, this is written as opposites, and you may not choose both of the opposites.
In this game there is no class but if you want to determine the role of your character in the world she lives in, you can pick one from the list (upper right). This is mostly for role-play purposes and depending on the game/setting/campaign this could have been chosen by the GM for you.
If you have saved some of your starting points, you can spend them in-game. It is as if you suddenly reveal that you have a hidden talent. Let us say that you meet with a bunch of Krogans speaking only in their native language. You may go "In fact, I can speak Kroganese" by spending at least 2 points for the profession (for apprentice level). Obviously, you must consult your GM first as the final decision is hers.
GM: Consider if the hidden talent makes sense or not in given circumstances and if it is fair, then decide accordingly. If the player had the chance to reveal such talent but never did, you could ignore the request.
Moments of fate are somewhat magical interventions. It basically provides players with something they need in a dire situation or in a case of a lethal emergency. Let us say that the characters desperately need food and water in a desert. Even though the chance of finding an oasis may be extremely low, they can spend a point to improve (or maybe guarantee) their chances. Similarly, players can force enemies to miss their shots, find exactly what they have needed in a very convenient place or ensure their success in an attempt via spending these points. This exists to provide a way out from impossible corners that the players occasionally drive themselves into.
GM: Moments of fates are supposed to be extremely rare situations and feel free to deny any unreasonable request.
GM: Items are not mentioned in this game except for the ones obtained via feat (equipment). I occasionally do not keep track of currency and just decide if characters can afford something or not depending on their personality, role and the past. When I do, I use a generic credits system. Mundane items (simple and skill related equipment) can be freely given to the players considering they do keep track of their belongings. Please discuss and clarify this with the players in game zero. If you want to keep track of the money, you are going to need to come up with a system (or borrow one). However, I do not think it is necessary for one-shots. For longer games you can reward your players with credits which can be used to purchase equipment. Since players can obtain items with points as well, I suggest determining a conversion factor to clarify relationship between points and the currency.
GM: Whenever a player searches a place please ask if she is looking for something specific. If so, then roll a probability check if she could have found it or not. I usually determine a value and roll a D100. However, you can always use D6s instead. I recommend using following formula to calculate the percentage: (2D6-2) x 10 (please just multiply and do not roll for ten times). If she is not looking for something specific, then you may use some random item generator to fill the place up or reward her with whatever makes sense under the circumstances.
GM: I usually do not keep the track of distances as squares or hexes, but I let my players know the distance between two objects of interest (like the character and the enemy) as meters. I consider 1 action approximately as 5 seconds and try to estimate if the action they are trying to accomplish can be completed in that time or not. Personally, I tend to focus more on story telling than the maps and the movement mechanics. That being said, you can always use a map that is designed for D&D or another game.
GM: For simple one-shots I use the adventure table on the upper section of GMs sheet. By rolling multiple dices you may determine many features of the game.
Setting: The place in which the game takes place.
Mission: Main goal of the players. Here are the most common tropes used in similar stories.
Threat: The main antagonist of the players aiming to prevent players from reaching their goals.
Valuable: The "thing" that is important for players and may be the antagonist. MacGuffin.
Twists: Plot twists to keep things interesting.
|Setting (D4/2)||Setting-2 (D6)||Mission (D8)|
|1.City / Station
3.Village / Valley
2.Clear a place from a threat
3.Escort valuable to safety
4.Secure a strategic place
5.Seek (built) a shelter from a threat
6.Solve the crime/mystery
|Threat (D12)||Valuable (D4)||Twists (D20)|
|1.Must stay undetected
3.Something is an illusion
4.Someone is enchanted
7.On the clock
8.Valuable is evil
9.Valuable is fake
10.Extra hidden threat
12.Threat is hidden
14.Evil have minions
15.Minions serve an evil
GM: I know the phrases are vague and it is up for interpretation. GMs may apply it as they see fit. You may also go ahead and use one of many online tools to design a one-shot or a short story.
|Level||Very Low||Low||Medium||High||Very High||Epic|
GM: I use the table on the lower section of GMs sheet to generate common enemies depending on character level. Here GMs can diversify the opponents by moving one or two cells to the right or left for one or two attributes.