Tuesday, 1 March 2011

System Hacking: Dragon Age

Elemental MagesThere's been much discussion of DARPG around - enough to warrant me reading the Players' Guide and GM Guide through quickly to see what all the fuss is about - with a lot of gripes leveled at the fact that the initial Set 1 release only caters for levels 1-5.

Personally, I think this is a good thing: let players grow into the game before you throw everything at them.  There's been a lot of discussion of broadening the classes over at darkAgeOracle, to cater for the likes of Clerics and Archers, and given my love of polyhedral dice (d6s are sooo dull) I soon developed an idea - probably spawned by WyRM's "define your character as a mix of Warrior, Rogue and Mage" spin on the traditional class idea...

Here's my fix: Three classes (as it stands) and three dice suggest to me that one could use one die per class, d8 representing the character's "favoured" or primary class, d6 for their secondary class, and d4 for their tertiary class (or remaining classes, assuming more are to be released?).

At creation, a player defines the character as Warrior/Rogue (for example) which will designate the d8 to Warrior and d6 to Rogue, with Wizard and any other new classes using the d4.  The PC starts as a Level 1 Warrior, as this is his/her primary class.

Roll d4 + d6 + d8 as you normally would to make checks in Dragon Age RPG - the distribution is pretty much bang on what you get from 3d6, so it shouldn't affect the difficulty - but use the Class Die as the Dragon Die for the action.  Thusly, utilising the abilities of the Primary Class will gain the player more stunt points, at the expense of the Tertiary Class(es)... I thought the chance of doubles would be a lot less, but you can see here that it's actually not much less - still around 40%.  Thanks to catlikecoding for the program there!

Common sense should be used as to which Class the action falls under, using the primary attributes and powers/focuses granted from each.  Players may be allowed to shift powers and focuses between adjacent die types to create hybrid characters; I'll leave that to your (and your GM's) discretion.

Players can choose to take a level in any class, providing that their Secondary level does not exceed their Primary level, and their Tertiary does not exceed their Secondary.

It's rough and ready... but it just might work!  Feedback would be appreciated.

Image by Dunechaser
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  1. I like it a lot! The AGE system seems to be the perfect mix of elegance with simplicity that really cries out to be modded and fiddled with, and I really like what you did here.

  2. Thanks - it's just an idea but I'd be interested to hear if anyone uses it... and how it pans out.


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