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Tag: mechanic (Page 1 of 4)

Doubles and Lonely Dice

This is the description I found on the troll dice roller website about a novel dice mechanic. An anonymous person was experimenting with an idea for a GURPS magic system using the site. The mechanic was documented this way:

Experiment with a custom magic-system in GURPS using HP as blood sacrifice, using 2-10 d6.
Doubles, triplets and above count as their value, lonely dice only add +1 per dice.
a roll with 5 dice [4,5,5,2,6] will make 1+5+5+1+1=13.

I immediately played with various numbers of dice and wrote scripts for d8s, d10s, and d12s. Yet after all that, I was drawn to 5d6. It reminded me of Dice Throne and ultimately Yahtzee. I had to admit that I was drawn to this idea using 5d6 because of the endless games of Yahtzee and Kismet I played as a kid. That shared memory makes this dice mechanic feel intuitive through repetition.

This is the point where my co-worker would say that my Nerd is showing.

When I began looking at the probabilities, however, it inspired me for possibilities in my home game with the kids, retroclones, and various other games. For the curious, here's a handy table.

At this point, my co-worker would use their teacher voice and talk about all the work they need to do.

The next few posts are going to explore how this dice mechanic can be used in 5e and other role-playing games. It not only provides an interesting sub-system, but it can be a part of the world-building. Specifically, I'm going to look at using this to build a bolt-on and hopefully simple way to make magic different.

Advantage, Disadvantage, and Fate

If a magic item or circumstance provides an advantage to a character, any subtraction results on the Fudge die are treated as addition.

For disadvantage, multiplication results are treated as subtraction.

For magic items or traits that leave the results to the fickleness of Fate, addition results are treated as multiplication.


After each session, the referee awards up to 3 xp based on criteria agreed upon before play. If I flesh out this idea more, there will be suggested criteria depending on what all the players and referee consider fun for them.

After XP is awarded, a player may spend 2 XP to buy a trait, 3 XP to increase their luck, or 4XP to increase their skill.

Traits cannot be increased above +1. A character has a limit of nine positive traits at any time. A player exchange one positive trait for a new one at any time, but this is required if a character already has nine positive traits.

In play, a character may acquire a negative trait due to a curse or other circumstance. It costs 1 XP to eliminate it, however, a character must always have at least one negative trait.

Increasing skill or luck advances the die up a step d4 > d6 > d8 > d10 > d12. The limit for a luck die is d10, a skill die is capped at d12. With powerful artifacts, other dice can be used above, below, or between the thresholds stated here.

Players are encouraged to provide a brief story about why a trait was gained, exchanged, or added. The same is true for an increase in skill or luck. It is assumed that these stories take place between game sessions. These are entirely optional.

Target Numbers

A target number of 12 is roughly equivalent to the top 5% of human achievement. A target number of 0 is considered easy while a target number of 24 is superhuman.

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