What’s your ultimate Franken-system?

And by Franken-system, I mean mash-up of D&D editions and variants.

Here’s mine:

  • Probably use Sword & Wizardry Whitebox as the base – easy to run, easy to modify and plenty of material out there for it; plus it uses ascending AC and the unitary saving throw (maybe invert the saving throw to roll d20 + save >= 20)
  • Probably use modified d6 as damage for all weapons (light weapons do 1d6-1 w/ a minimum of 1; 2-handers do 1d6+1), because it’s A) simple and B) reduces the incentive for players to min-max their weapon selection
  • Naturally, I’d use my own S&W material (scroll down a bit), like the feats and classes
  • I like the idea of a unified XP advancement chart, ala 3E/Pathfinder, so I’d probably just grab the Fighter XP advancement chart from the S&W WB and use it for all classes in the game; may have to tweak the demi-humans a bit to compensate (especially Elves)
  • Just flat out steal the encumbrance rules from the excellent Lamentation of the Flame Princess (and maybe the skills too…not entirely sold on the necessity of a formal skill system, though)
  • I’m a fan of crazy gonzo, so I’d draw inspiration from sources like Carcosa, Planet Algol and Anomalous Subsurface Environment…and anything else that caught my fancy

What would your Franken-system look like?


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7 Responses to “What’s your ultimate Franken-system?”

  1. Koren nRhys Says:

    I started my current campaign using WhiteBox, with just a couple of additional classes. I wanted to keep it as simple and by the book as possible. Once I got my crew of newbies up to speed, I transitioned the game to BECMI/RC D&D.

    Now I’m finding that I want to add more and more goodies – classes, races, etc, as I develop the game world. Since I also want to compile a Players Guide, and be able to legally share it, I’ve finally caved in and officially decided to run Labyrinth Lord as opposed to “real” D&D. This lets me mash together all the OGL stuff I want to.

    I’ve been using Delta’s Target 20, but still like the simplicity of
    Ascending AC/BAB and the single saving throw from S&W (Core or Complete).
    Goodies pulled from Mutant Future, Realms of Crawling Chaos and Starships & Spacemen (all from Goblinoid Games), maybe some bits from the Red Tide books by Sine Nomine. There’s just so much LL material out there it’s mind boggling.

    • edowar Says:

      Ah, Realms of Crawling Chaos, I almost forgot about that one. Even though it’s for LL, it would be easy enough to convert material to S&W. And the new Starships & Spacemen is supposed to be compatible with LL, so I’ll have to check that out, too.

      Delta’s Target 20 is very clever, but I’m with you that Ascending AC/BAB is much easier to use.

      Thanks for commenting.

  2. David Jenks Says:

    Mash-up of D&D editions *specifically* is the rule?

    Damn. I guess that excludes my Basic Role Playing (Elric!) / Barbarians of Lemuria mash-up. I’d make sweet, sweet love to a system like that. Several times a night.

    I’d have to go with Trailblazer (minus all references to grid-based combat, including AoOs and 5-ft steps) + Pathfinder Beginner Box (with the Edowar race and class expansions). Stir vigorously and bake at 350 degrees, until the PF BB actually lets a character pass 5th level. 😉

    • edowar Says:

      Well, I guess it doesn’t have to be just D&D mash-ups, but I figured that would be easiest because all the various editions have so much in common. Plus, it’s the most popular RPG in the world. 😉

      I don’t know much about BRP, but Barbarians of Lemuria is a neat little game.

  3. David Jenks Says:

    BRP is the “generic” version of the rules that Call of Cthulhu uses (minus horror-specific stuff), and is a percentile-based game.

    I fell in love with the simplicity of the CoC rules, and always wondered how I could use them to run D&D type adventures. Then I found Elric!–based (obviously) on Michael Moorecock’s novels–and that scratched some of my itch.

    Then, about 5 or so years ago, they released the BRP rules, which is a baseline, generic, setting-transparent rules engine with chapters dedicated to modular add-ons to that base. Want fantasy + horror + psionics? Want sci-fi + magic? You can mix & match them.

    I also have to admit, 13th Age (Pelgrane Press) is sounding very intriguing, like a mash-up of various tasty bits of previous editions….

  4. The Recursion King Says:

    Dragonmech + Darksun would be quite awesome… Steam power in the desert, lunar dragons attacking city states ruled by sorceror tyrants and city mechs arriving unannounced at reservoirs and draining them of water…

    I’m starting a Dragonmech campaign up this weekend so I’ve been reading the source books in preparation.

  5. thebabblingbane Says:

    My monster wouldn’t be that far off yours Ed. Except maybe the last “gonzo” part. I like my fatasy dark, gritty, and deadly. I would probably swish in some D&D RC stuff like dominions and cap it at 9th level or so. Or, I would go with PFBB, like I am now, and add in dominion stuff ala Book of the River Nations.


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