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So I took a look at the SRD and the Open D6 books, but I was wondering if there was some sort of "meta" D6 system reference. For example, there are flavors of D6 (mini-six, open D6, Star Wars D6) and they all have a damage system. Some have wounds, some have body points, but there isn't one document that describes the fundamental needs of a damage system.

 

Here is an example with the damage system. Open D6 has both body points and wounds options. If I were to make a new system, it would be nice to know what the sorts of damage ranges are. I can wander over to the weapons section and look at the "normal" weapons and figure it out myself, but it would be nice if there were some sort of meta-model that said "3D6 damage is a severe wound for a human." Then I could make a damage system that would support that. Also, I could configure weapons, spells, etc. to make sure that they would work with any damage system.

 

As another example I've always thought of giving players attack and defense with no MAP penalty. Why? Well, this is what most people *want* to do, and eliminates the -1D on everything. I always feel that in game design the "normal use case" should invoke as few special case rules as possible. But then I thought to myself, this means that all attacks and defense have one more die. Okay, that balances in pure opposed tests. But does it balance with damage, default difficulty numbers and other things if each player essentially has +1D in all normal combat situations? Should I have everyone start with one die lower in combat skills to offset, or increase range target numbers? If I had some sort of meta system document that describe how each rules subsystem was designed then I could design that better.

 

So in short I'd like to find a document that describes the underlying assumptions and relations between the subsystems regardless of what they are called. I can probably extract one, but I don't want to re-invent the wheel.

 

Anyway, I don't know if anyone has seen this sort of thing for D6 before, but it would be nice to assemble. Especially as the world starts to accumulate more variants and people start to plug and play house rules more.

 

Hope this makes sense.

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It makes sense, but it would be a heck of a task to accomplish. The thing that would be a problem is the slightly varying fluctuations in the attribute maximums and/or how wounds are handled that would give you the "baseline" numbers you're referring to. Granted, we have some good number crunching people here on this site that could probably sit down (assuming time) and come up with something like this.

 

Suffice to say, there definitely isn't something like this out there right now.

 

Welcome to the boards!

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As another example I've always thought of giving players attack and defense with no MAP penalty.
This confused me for a moment but, do you mean MAP = "Multi Action Penalty"?

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So I took a look at the SRD and the Open D6 books, but I was wondering if there was some sort of "meta" D6 system reference. For example, there are flavors of D6 (mini-six, open D6, Star Wars D6) and they all have a damage system. Some have wounds, some have body points, but there isn't one document that describes the fundamental needs of a damage system.
While this would be nice, there are some fundamental problems.

 

First, "the fundamental needs of a damage system" doesn't apply to just OpenD6, it's variants, etc. It applies to pretty much EVERY RPG system out there. Maybe something diceless like "Amber" doesn't need one. So this would be more a generic, systemless "Needs to Consider When Designing a Damage Mechanic For RPGs"

 

Second your "few special case rules" referring to MAP, basically what you call special case is really closer to a normal case, and is applied across the entire mechanic. The underlying thinking basically is "You can focus your attention on doing one thing at a time OR You can try to do multiple things and accept the natural penalties that come from trying to multitask (basically your brain can only do so much at one time). A huge majority of the gamers I've played with/GM'd for are the "I want to do this, and that, and some other thing..." I mean Shoot at one guy, then dodge behind something, while having a long conversation with someone else etc. So a MAP is quite close to the norm (and if you think about it this pretty much is the same in real life, just no dice rolling).

 

Now you ask about messing with the number of die for combat or changing target numbers. I say "Why"? I can imagine that you don't want to be deciding in advance how many actions you are going to take for the round and have the MAP applied? The OpenD6 system is, as written, already handles the "just one thing", represented by the dice listed for the skill. Do more than two things in the round, bingo MAP kicks in.

 

Why +1D only in "normal combat situations" but not in anything else that might happen in a round... translating text in a hurry, trying to communicate information during a fight, attempting to fix that radio and call in an air strike while being shot at? If all the character does is focus on that ONE task why wouldn't they get the +1D too.

 

What about non-combat situations? Can't a player/character to more than one thing during a non-combat round? Yes rounds are used when the actions of PCs/NPCs are happening simultaneously and keeping track of what happens when/where is important. (EX. the PCs are robbing a bank and the location of the guards as the PCs move through the building, crack the vault etc. VS are the guards early on their rounds because they want to see the big game? - Leverage, Season 1)

 

Lastly, there is "D6" (a logo/name owned by a commercial company, copyrighted), "OpenD6" (the OGL base version of the rules), then variants like "CinemaD6", "Legend D6" and such. They all have differing ways to do certain things. Would all them need to be recognized.

 

Andrew, I suggest you get the core OpenD6 document. It's not a role playing game system but a cook book to create your own RPG. It's great. The combat section alone talks about the different mechanic options and how a GM can even switch between mechanics in the same session (uses the faster paced mechanic most of the time, but goes to the slower more detail version for the big Boss fight so it's not over in two rounds). You will find a great deal of insight there.

 

Welcome aboard.

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This confused me for a moment but, do you mean MAP = "Multi Action Penalty"?

 

Sorry, yes! In other games I've played people usually just declare "Attack/Defend" and move on to their round.

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GamerDude,

 

Thanks for welcoming me!

 

Thanks for all the great questions and tips. This is exactly the sorts of issues I'm looking to identify and was hoping to find some sort of "D6 theory" book somewhere.

 

The things I'd like to see are nicely highlighted by your excellent questions. Let me pick some out:

 

While this would be nice, there are some fundamental problems.

Second your "few special case rules" referring to MAP, basically what you call special case is really closer to a normal case, and is applied across the entire mechanic. The underlying thinking basically is "You can focus your attention on doing one thing at a time OR You can try to do multiple things and accept the natural penalties that come from trying to multitask (basically your brain can only do so much at one time).

 

That's a great design statement "focus your attention on one thing at a time" and that's the sort of stuff I'm looking for. When I've made/tweaked RPGs in the past, I've struggled with "what is one thing." For example: When I spar someone in martial arts attachking and defending against my opponent is one thing. But certainly attacking one guy and watching for attacks from other people are two different points of focus. I'm just trying to sort out the D6 philosophy. (paraphrase) "So what the rulebooks tell me is true, from a certain point of view." In Over the Edge people have skills like "fighter pilot" or whatnot. The skill conveys a huge pile of context and makes it very clear about what is going on. The guy isn't a competition shooter, but he's shot a pistol on the range, but probably not in combat.

 

 

While this would be nice, there are some fundamental problems.

 

Which is why I was hoping someone else had done it. ;)

 

Why +1D only in "normal combat situations" but not in anything else that might happen in a round... translating text in a hurry, trying to communicate information during a fight, attempting to fix that radio and call in an air strike while being shot at? If all the character does is focus on that ONE task why wouldn't they get the +1D too.

 

Precisely! What are the skills calibrated against? I imagine that each skill is calibrated against its expected use pattern. For example I expect my sword skill isn't in relation to "Hit a stationary combat dummy" but instead is related to "Hit the gorram reaver trying to gnaw on my innards." Are all skills calibrated for combat? Is fix radio a combat skill? If I calibrate attack/defend to be used in tandem, then I would expect that using one solo would get a bonus. So from a meta-system I would like to see something like "skills levels are for working in the normal environment" or "skills levels are designed for working in combat." Now, I'm not saying we have different adjustments and tables during play, but it would be nice to see this clarified for the designers so we can hide it into the game in the right way.

 

So to make it easier for my players I could say "I assume you're going to always attack/defend so change your character sheet to be -1 on your attack and defense skills, and if you don't do them together add +1D". Mathematically it is the same and based on what you said it should be precisely the same. But are there any other gotchas? It would be nice to look at a meta-model a-priori instead of having a crappy session.

 

Lastly, there is "D6" (a logo/name owned by a commercial company, copyrighted), "OpenD6" (the OGL base version of the rules), then variants like "CinemaD6", "Legend D6" and such. They all have differing ways to do certain things. Would all them need to be recognized.

 

Good question. I'd haven't fully loaded all the variants into my head yet, but from what I've seen most seem to be compatible. They seem to work well because they've been playtested and they figured out what works. What I'm trying to find is a reasoning framework as opposed to having to use empirical evidence. Using medicine as analogy; This is a "western" approach instead of "eastern." And maybe for that reason doomed to fail, but the engineer in me is trying to get to the roots.

 

Andrew, I suggest you get the core OpenD6 document. It's not a role playing game system but a cook book to create your own RPG. It's great. The combat section alone talks about the different mechanic options and how a GM can even switch between mechanics in the same session (uses the faster paced mechanic most of the time, but goes to the slower more detail version for the big Boss fight so it's not over in two rounds). You will find a great deal of insight there.

 

I'm not sure what you mean by "core OpenD6 document' but I am looking for insight. I've been looking through all the WEG PDF's (aren those the cord documents?), Legend D6, Cinema6 and MiniSix and I have a bunch of Star Wars D6 from way back. I've looked at the website with the SRD on the openD6 wiki. But they all seem to explain the rules, not the justifications for the rules. I guess I just need to reflect on them more.

 

It seems to me that if I keep posting enough questions, I'll probably elicit the meta-model from this list, and I just need to type it up. :)

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Sorry, yes! In other games I've played people usually just declare "Attack/Defend" and move on to their round.
Ahh... no majority of my players over the last 30+ years have been "how much can I squeeze into a round and get the GM to buy it". So a MAP is good, and actually brings a level of realism in without being overly combersom.

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Most of my other games (RQ, Harnmaster, d20, etc.) have been outside of D6 where they handed multiple actions differently. Having the players try to squeeze in as much as they can will be a nice change. But certainly, MAP is a requirement when the system allows the player to do arbitrary amounts of actions.

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Most of my other games (RQ, Harnmaster, d20, etc.) have been outside of D6 where they handed multiple actions differently.
I understood your original question - maybe from all those years of RQ. Yeah, in Star Wars D6 you have to mentally compute that if you go first, your attack is your roll and your defense is -1D. If you go second both actions are -1D. It works pretty well for blaster and dodge where you mentally aren't thinking of those as a unity. It is a bit odd for melee, brawling, and lightsaber skills where often attack and defend are a tactical and training unity. So you have to mentally recalibrate that axe attack 5D, axe parry 5D really means 4D (because of the -1D MAP) unless your opponent is just kind of standing there letting you hit him.

 

It might have been nice to have calculated it the way you do, since that is how melee and hand to hand combat works, though the actual game practice makes for a single uniform rule - any action over 1 causes a MAP. You just have to mentally recalibrate what your skill means.

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I am currently working on a variant for both OpenD6 and Traveller to deal with handling multiple actions, what you can do etc. The idea comes from another game but basically you can call it "Fluid" or "Dynamic" initiative.

 

The basic concept is this: Time is handled in 1 second increments. Your "initiative" determines when your 1st action of the encounter happens. Then what you choose to do (one action, and free action of saying 1 normal sentence). Then you declare your 2nd action, which takes X seconds before you can complete it. So loading/reloading weapons, pulling out weapons or gear, time between shots on a particular weapon. No rounds etc anyone on the same 'tick' of the initiative track pretty much goes at the same time.

 

Quick example. (these are my quick estimates please don't take them as Real Life accurate)

1) a 9mm Glock with a 15 round magazine would take 1 second to draw from holster, and then fire one round each second no bonus for aiming/no penalty for not aiming.

2) An old single action revolver. Again 1 second to draw, but because the hammer has to be drawn back I give it 2 seconds before it could shoot.

 

So lets say both take first action on count 3

COUNT 3

Glock: pulls gun - Declares shooting target "A" This takes 1 second, initiative set to "4"

Revolver: Pulls gun - Declares shooting at target "A" This takes 2 seconds, initiative set to "5"

COUNT 4

Glock: Fires first shot at target "A" - Declares will shoot again same target. This takes 1 second so initiative set to "5"

Revolver: Busy cocking the hammer - no game effect

COUNT 5

Glock: Fires second shot at target "A" - declares one aim then fire at target "A". This takes 2 seconds Initiative set to "7"

Revolver: Fires first shot at target "A" - declares one aim then fire at target "B" (standing next to "A"). This takes three seconds initiative set to "8"

 

etc...

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Ok, so to finish my thought (silly "post" vs "preview").

 

A system like this where the time increment for a"round" is so small that you really can't accomplish multiple actions in one round. This eliminates trying to squeeze in too many things AND any MAP.

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I remember doing something like this in a previous game, like Top Secret or some such. I also remember on time where on guy who was "far away" couldn't get there in time to do anything useful. Too much micro-management and the cinematic value was lost.

 

Actually, I think MAP is a great idea overall. My initial question was about find the background to reasoning about it.

 

One question: For the people who try to squish in so many actions, do you play with the bonuses from result points? I was reading through D6 Fantasy and came across "One-fifth of the result points from an attack roll can be included as bonus to damage." I wonder if that is straight points or dice.

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Actually, I think MAP is a great idea overall. My initial question was about find the background to reasoning about it.
I think you've got it now.

 

I was reading through D6 Fantasy and came across "One-fifth of the result points from an attack roll can be included as bonus to damage." I wonder if that is straight points or dice.
I infer this comes from the optional rule in SWRPG (I think from the Spec Forces supplement) where you increase damage for accuracy. One of the options was +1 damage per 5 points over the target number. Since I use that with a always round down interpretation, unless the result points are pretty high 15+ you don't get to a whole die. Whether to treat it as +3 or +1D6 - I would leave that as GM's choice. Generally I convert numeric pluses > 2 to dice so +4 = 1D+1, but for someone reason I have left the bonus for accuracy as a simple numeric.

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Quick example. (these are my quick estimates please don't take them as Real Life accurate)

1) a 9mm Glock with a 15 round magazine would take 1 second to draw from holster, and then fire one round each second no bonus for aiming/no penalty for not aiming.

2) An old single action revolver. Again 1 second to draw, but because the hammer has to be drawn back I give it 2 seconds before it could shoot.

 

So lets say both take first action on count 3

COUNT 3

Glock: pulls gun - Declares shooting target "A" This takes 1 second, initiative set to "4"

Revolver: Pulls gun - Declares shooting at target "A" This takes 2 seconds, initiative set to "5"

COUNT 4

Glock: Fires first shot at target "A" - Declares will shoot again same target. This takes 1 second so initiative set to "5"

Revolver: Busy cocking the hammer - no game effect

COUNT 5

Glock: Fires second shot at target "A" - declares one aim then fire at target "A". This takes 2 seconds Initiative set to "7"

Revolver: Fires first shot at target "A" - declares one aim then fire at target "B" (standing next to "A"). This takes three seconds initiative set to "8"

 

etc...

 

Did you know this is almost identicle to one of the initiative options in "The D6 System" book? That book was also released to OpenD6. :)

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1 second action rounds are a little too GURPS like for me. It dissects the action to the point where stretches of turns can turn into a stop motion animation of trying to get a line of sight on a target, of course YMMV.

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GURPS used the traditional "ok, you're all acting 'at the same' time in the round BUT.. fred if you accidently hit johnny then that will affect is roll, but if on his turn he hits you of course that doesn't affect what you already did"

 

I used "iincrement" not "round", initiative clock/track because they aren't rounds. Nothing that happens at Initiative 5 has an effect on anyone else going in imitative 5 so it is much closer to truly "simultaneously".

 

I guess the way I see it is, anyone using the "round" system of D&D, GURPS, etc doesn't have the feeling of people acting at the same moment. The initiative track I mentioned does (to me at least)

Edited by GamerDude
bad spelling

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I understand how you split up the initiative, I am just saying that breaking down the action to that degree can seriously slow the flow of the game. Detail wise I think it is great (though realistically you can get a lot more done firearms wise in a second ;) ), just my experience with games that break down the action to that degree tends ot be negative for medium to large groups. GURPS and Champions is great for 2-3 players, 4-5 not so much especially as the number of NPC's the GM has to handle grows.

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I understand how you split up the initiative, I am just saying that breaking down the action to that degree can seriously slow the flow of the game. Detail wise I think it is great (though realistically you can get a lot more done firearms wise in a second ;) ), just my experience with games that break down the action to that degree tends ot be negative for medium to large groups. GURPS and Champions is great for 2-3 players, 4-5 not so much especially as the number of NPC's the GM has to handle grows.

 

Ok, let me put it this way: It's the same basic system used in "Aces & Eights" by Kenzer&Co. They have demoed it for years at Gencon. Trust me the *only* slowdown is people just not freaking paying attention. Literally it totally destroys the "multiple actions per round" simple because the is no time to do eight different things and that is clear. D&D and others? 6 sec rounds, 3 sec rounds? A person can easily argue that many particular actions are all possible within that time ("You know how many beers you can pop open in 3.3 seconds? 13" Johnny Dep, 21 Jumpstreet)

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Listen... I'm not going to reply any more on this. I know that 3, 4, 5, 6 second rounds are totally ingrained into so many RPG systems, and that soooo many gamers have gotten into their head how 1 sec rounds are just like the devil's playtoy or something.

 

But honestly, I've been there, I've done that. I've taken people who HATED GURPS just because how one MIB explained things particularly rounds (not explaining they were 1 sec) and these folks refused to have another thing with the game. I got them to try one small session with me and they came out loving it, because they understood it.

 

I don't want a fight, or an argument. I am simply conceding that long term personal experience makes some things very near and dear, and the multi-second round is definitely one of them.

Edited by GamerDude

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Ok, let me put it this way: It's the same basic system used in "Aces & Eights" by Kenzer&Co. They have demoed it for years at Gencon. Trust me the *only* slowdown is people just not freaking paying attention. Literally it totally destroys the "multiple actions per round" simple because the is no time to do eight different things and that is clear. D&D and others? 6 sec rounds, 3 sec rounds? A person can easily argue that many particular actions are all possible within that time ("You know how many beers you can pop open in 3.3 seconds? 13" Johnny Dep, 21 Jumpstreet)

 

I guess I am not being very clear. My point is this, if you want or use any degree of tactical detail, the game will inevitably slow down. While less is being done on a per turn basis, more turns are required to resolve the same thing. You may very well have multiple turns where the only thing happening is PC 1 moves one hex, PC 2 moves one hex, PC 3 takes a shot at NPC 1. NPC 2-10 move one square. What I am trying to get at is that when you break the time down to that level you almost guarantee a more tactical/board game feel, and a less narrative presentation. As the tactical aspect of a game increases so do the rule questions, and conflicts, additionally the divide between experienced characters and novices is reduced. If you want to portray a more cinematic setting breaking things down to where everyone gets to do the same thing in the same amount of time, becomes a rather large hurdle. At least in my mind the strength of the D6 system beyond its flexibility is that it is inherently rules light, and provides the perfect engine for a cinematic game.

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I guess I am not being very clear. My point is this, if you want or use any degree of tactical detail, the game will inevitably slow down.
I don't know what to say because I hear you and... that is *your* opinion/experience. I totally accept and acknowledge your experience, feelings, and opinion on this and have been. But well, would be nice to hear a little less "rigidity in thought" and a little more of the same acceptance in kind for my experience, feelings and opinions.

 

Peace out!

Edited by GamerDude
[EDIT: Had listed my experiance to show that I have a clue, but understand it was taken as me being a bully]

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I accept what you are saying, and fully respect it, I just don't think it will work for me, or the people I play with, since I have used games with a similar pacing in the past. Perhaps it works for you, but I am simply pointing out what I see as things people should consider before using it.

 

I understand you have a long history of gaming, but when you whip it out so to speak your credibility suffers, particularly when you don't know where the other persons experience comes from. I have been GMing for 32 years, countless game systems, at sea, air, and land, here and abroad. I have had campaigns that lasted over 3000 hours of game play in multiple systems, officially play tested multiple systems, and contributed to their development or publishing in other ways. If you have a valid point to be made it should stand regardless of your experience, or mine, especially on the internet ;)

 

Anyway I was not trying to be offensive or belittling, I was simply stating an opinion which I thought pretty clearly pointed out potential issues with implementing it that other GM's might run into.

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