Friday, October 11, 2013


I believe that I'm going to cap the Beacon advancement at level 12. I'm not going to do any drastic changes to the level progression or realign spells to levels or anything else that might really change the game simply because, well, it would really change the game.  I do think that capping the rule book tables and charts at level 12 will simplify everything however.  If people want to run past that level they can figure out the progression and extrapolate but I don't think I would want to play a level 15-16 character in Beacon anyway, I think things tend to break down by that point. I might have liked to make things even simpler with an even 10 levels but there's no real good reason to do that. By level 12 all classes have had a chance to get a couple bumps to their attack bonus, a few class based skill bumps and access to level 6 spells so I think it's the natural place to stop. This way I won't have to consider adding in level 7 or 8 spells, or worry about characters with triple digit hitpoints.

I'm also experimenting with replacing the attack bonus with an attack dice, ala Dungeon Crawl Classics.  I'm not going to go so far as to introduce zocchi dice or anything, however I think that with the basic d4-d12 you can get a pretty decent progression.  I'm mainly looking at how this impacts the fighter at the moment as they get the full range of the bonus and if it works for them, it will be easy to make it work for the other classes.

Here's the current attack bonus chart:

And here's an example of how that progression would map as an attack bonus roll:
L1 L2 L3 L4 L5 L6
Dice(av) d2(1.5) d4(2.5) d6(3.5) d8(4.5) 2d4(5) d12(6.5)
Low-Hi 1-2 1-4 1-6 1-8 2-8 1-12
L7 L8 L9 L10 L11 L12
Dice(av) 2d6(7) 3d4(7.5) 3d6(10.5) 2d10(11) 2d12(13) 3d8(13.5)
Low-Hi2-12 3-12 3-18 2-20 2-24 3-24
with magic users topping out at d8 and the other classes topping out at d12 
I tried to keep the average equivalent to existing values, but still the first thing that you will notice is that the high and low values are pretty wild, a possible +3 or +24 to hit at level 12.   I don't think that is a deal breaker, but it is pretty jarring, and I can see players not liking that much randomness.  I really don't like it very much so I've also considered doing this with more smaller dice in order to curb those outliers.  Also there's something cool about rolling a handful of dice and having more dice in that roll would model the reliability that comes from experience.  Doing this would expose more gaps in the progression but it would work out across the 12 levels and I'd have to jigger level 1 and 2 a bit so it would probably* look something like this:
L1 L2 L4 L6 L8 L10 L12
Dice(av) +1 d3(2) d4(2.5) 2d4(5) 3d4(7.5) 4d4(10) 5d4(12.5)
Low-Hi +1 1-3 1-4 2-8 3-12 4-16 5-20
 In this case magic users would top out at d4 and the other classes at 2d4
That is a lot more reasonable for my taste although the magic users get screwed.  I'd have to adjust that I think.  Also it is a new arbitrary mechanic with a lookup table to reference and it does nothing to address all the other mechanics that rely on incremental bonuses, like skill and magic rolls.  That means it's more complicated than what was there before and I'm not sure it adds a co-responding value to the game.  I'll have to think about this some more.

*yes I know

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