Sunday, December 11, 2011

Mirolite20: Considering Stats

Not having gotten any feed back from my initial discussion of Stats for the conversion of Microlite20 to the system I want to use for Humanity's Reign & Ruin, I flipped a coin and decided to move on by expanding on the assumption that I would use Fortitude, Reflex, and Will as the default Stats. These will equate to Strength, Dexterity, and Mind of the standard Microlite20 rulebook.

As I mentioned in the proceeding post, Charisma is an often added stat for Microlite20 (simply M20 for here on out). Though I usually play with this added stat, I am apprehensive in trying to add it, based on my current decision to switch to the fore mentioned; Fortitude, Reflex, and Will stats, because there is no save in this capacity found in the source material (d20 SRD).

Proponents of the, "Don't use Charisma, just make it a Mind save" for conventional M20, have a point, considering my choice to change the default stats. Though I did not like the idea of using Mind as a charismatic save previously, it does makes a bit more sense to me now as a Will save. Even so, I have been toying with the thought of adding some form of 'Composure' stat, and relating save.

On Stat Values: Determining stat values vary from incarnation to incarnation of M20. Purest Essence, which I consider to be the default version, has Players roll 4d6 and drop the lowest and assign them as they are rolled. I had been thinking that I would drop Stat values altogether, but have reconciled that notion to my pending True20 project of M20. So how do I want to generate Stat values? Neither of these approaches appeal to me for this iteration of rules. The convention of 3d6 in order is suitably 'old school', and has the advantage of being gritty especially considering my adaptation of Feats, which I will blog about in later post. Though I want gritty, I don't feel compelled to gimp the Players out of playing the Class that they want to play. This is a rather weighted decision because of the possible perception that I am limiting Players on Race, which again I will address in subsequent posts. The short of it however, is that in Humanity's Reign, Humans will be the primary Race and in Humanity's Ruin, Demi-Humans will be.

So, currently I am planning on going with having Players roll 3d6, assigning the highest to the 'Prime' Stat for their Class and the remaining two scores (three if I decide to go with a 'Composure' Stat) go in order for the other two (or three) Stats.

On Stat Bonuses: Like Stat Values, Stat Bonus calculations vary widely on their mathematical determination depending on version of M20 you are playing. Purest Essence says, "Stat bonus = (STAT-10)/2, round down." On the high side, this could grant a +4 bonus with an eighteen Stat Value ((18-10)/2). Though this corresponds to the source material, I am much more partial to the normal spread found in older versions of the game, ranging from -3 to +3 with the bell curve resting on a +0 for the 9 to 12 range.

So, do I want to stick with the convention established with Purest Essence and the SRD, or do I want to tone it down and flatten the bell curve  bit? This is a harder question to answer in my opinion, and one that I am not ready to decide upon at this time. Advantage goes to flattening the bell curve for the gritty feel I want, but unlike changing the Stat names, changing it adds one more hurdle for compatibility.

I hope you have enjoyed watching my head implode over what might be thought of as trivial decisions, but I would REALLY like to hear some input, or thoughts, on the matter.



  1. This is a good idea, I thought of doing something like this for Beacon but I realized that I wanted players to be able to improve their saves by adding skill points instead. I wouldn't worry about compatibility too much. As a proponent of Charisma I would convert it to Will and come up with something else for the MIND stat (or just go fortitude, reflex, Mind and Will.)

  2. Thanks for the comments Todd. Your Beacon blog and rules are a strong motivator for me to push on with this project. I had intended to do as you did with skills improving saves. Just using the Stat name and the skill instead of having yet another term.

    Example: A Reflex Save to dodge a fireball might be (Reflex + Physical), or to sense a landslide might be (Reflex + Survival), or even (Fortitude + Physical) for poison, etc.

    I like the idea of a fourth stat; Fortitude and Reflex are good for toughness and speed of body. Will, is the toughness of the mind. I think rather than Charisma, I will look at speed of the mind now.


  3. While trying to figure out the correct verbiage for Stats, I was looking for "Speed of Mind". Interesting I found this, "Response time is the sum of reaction time plus movement time." ~ I lost the source.

    I also found 'Cognition: The mental action or process of acquiring knowledge and understanding through thought, experience, and the senses.' and from it, 'Comprehension: capacity of the mind to perceive and understand; power to grasp ideas; ability to know.'

    Leaning toward comprehension at the moment if I do decide to go with a fourth stat.

    So the combination of comprehension + reaction could equate to response time, or in this context, Initiative! ~ I like that.


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