Feb 22 - New Adventure, Game Balancing & Version 0.2

The Heroes of Adventure rules have been updated to version 0.2 following the first sweep of typos, layout edits and game balancing.

Version 0.2 Change Log

  • Spell effects have been updated (to make it harder to cast spells against larger/higher level opponents - see note below)
  • Combat momentum rules removed following feedback (too random and added another step in combat)
  • 'Dodge' ability added for Barbarians, Rogues, Rangers (gives lighter armoured heroes greater chance in combat)
  • Various typos and wording tweaks (nothing game altering)
  • Mage ability list was missing spell some domains and has been updated
  • Spell lists have been re-ordered alphabetically after Arcane Magic

Starter Adventure Released

I have also written up the first adventure I ran with my play-testers many months ago called Lair of the Mutant which is available for download here.  

It's a straightforward adventure with a location to explore, a threat to be discovered and a number of tactics, tools and options you can find and use to help overcome the challenge and I think it makes a good 'starter' adventure.

Game Balancing

The first major flaw to balance was the spell rules.  

Our mid-level heroes had travelled through the dark barren Shadowlands and descended deep within the Temple of the Kadmos to discover the tomb of the Dead God ensorcelled in a shield of eldritch power. The shield was fading and a creature of evil known as the Forbidden, one of the Nine Dead Gods was awaking from its magical slumber. The Forbidden were a threat to all in the mortal realm.

Do you stand and fight or do you flee the Shadowlands destroying the portal and protecting the Fallen Lands from this threat?

What I had expected to be a major magic-based encounter against a tough opponent turned out to be a less than satisfying war of attrition. I give credit to my players for engaging with the rules and finding some simple spells and combination of actions which reading the rules as written meant they could cast these easily and keep a single deadly opponent off-balance for the entire encounter whilst they chipped away at it's health until they eventually defeated it.

Following a post-game review and feedback session (note, I allowed the players to take advantage of the rules as written and 'win' the encounter) I have re-written some of the spell effects to prevent this happening again. 

In simple terms, if you cast a spells which immobilise or disable opponents then there is a limit on who may be affected by these spells at their basic level (i.e. lower level or medium sized creatures). You will be able to use these spells against higher level or larger creatures but it will require the spells to be amplified (costing more health and requiring a higher target number to roll). 

I want the players to be able to use these spells against tougher opponents but this should be more difficult (and as a result hopefully more satisfying when a move does play out as planned).

Future Rule Tweaks/Thoughts

I am toying with making all spell failures cost health to cast but will reflect on this further as I may be guilty of taking too much away from spell-casting characters (who from a setting theme perspective should be rare individuals)

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