Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Character Generation (Fayetteville Rules)

So, it's taken me a while, but here are some more of those D&D variant rules being used in early 1980 in Fayetteville, Arkansas: the first version of the D&D rules I learned.

I shd stress that these are for the most part typed, with the exceptions hand-copied.*  Nothing was typeset or xeroxed** from a book or even a magazine. 

Character Generation
Human    01-80
Elf           81-86
Dwarf      87-92
Hobbit     93-95
Gnome    96-97
Other       98-00

Group I     01-65
Group II   66-95
Group III  96-00

Group I
Eagle-Winged Human 01-30
Bat-Winged Human     31-36
Centaur                         37-66
Werewolf                      67-86
Werebear                      87-94
Werelion                       95-96
Wereboar                      97-98
Other were                    99-00

Group II
Common Troll   01-20
Common Ogre   21-44
Cave Troll          45-56
Hill Troll            57-67
Frost Giant         68-78
Fire Giant           79-84
Hill Giant           85-90
Storm Giant        91-96
Mountain Ogre   97-00

Group III
Ogre Mage         01-25
Mountain Troll   26-45
Cave Giant         46-70
Stone Giant        71-99
Hellmarch Troll*      00

   *2% chance of being a troll mage

Social Class
Royal                 00
Noble            90-99
Guildsman    66-89
Townsman    41-65
Yoeman        26-40 [sic]
Serf               01-25

--also on this page, probably just because it fit, are the rules for changing ability scores, lowering one score in order to raise another:

Str to Agil 2:1  not reversible
Str to IQ    2:1  reverible
Str to Wis  3:1       "
IQ to Wis   2:1       "
Wis to Dex 2:1  not reversible***

Next up comes the Characteristic Table, listing all the pluses and minuses you get based on what race your character turned out to be, with the ability scores listed along the top and the character race along the left margin.  The ten characteristics given are Str, IQ, Wis, Dr, Dex, Ag, Voi, Com, Sz, & Con.

For example, a Hobbit (so named) gets no change to Str, IQ, or Wis; +6 Dr, +4 Dex and Ag, no change to Voi and Com, -12 to Sz, and +6 to Con.
By contrast, a Stone Giant got +10 Str, -33 IQ, no change to Wis, Dr, Dex, or Ag, -5 to both Voi and Com, +55 to Sz, and +10 Con.

Also on this page are possible bonuses and penalties for rolling really well or really poorly on characteristics. If you rolled 18, you could roll again. A 16 on this second roll gave you +1 to the characteristic [=19, I suppose]. A 17 gave you +2, and an 18 a +3 and the right to roll again (and so forth). Similarly, if you'd rolled a 3 when generating the character you had to roll again. A 5 on this second roll gave you a -1 to that characteristic [=2, I suppose]. A 4 gave you a -2, and a 3 a -3 and you had to roll again. I'm not sure how a characteristic score of 0 or below worked; hopefully not many had to face that dilemma. 

Also on this page is a note that female characters all get -3 to size, and two more minor random tables

01-75 R
76-97 L
98-00 A

L  01-30   N 31-70   G 71-00
G 01-30   N 31-70   E 71-00

As you can see, this game really believed in random dice rolls.

More to come.

--John R.

(*by me -- my handwriting was more legible in those days)

(**because we didn't 'photocopy' back then)

(***this tends to confirm my memory that you didn't get to arrange the scores: you had to take them in the order rolled. So if you wanted to play a magic-user and rolled a high strength and low intelligence, you were just out of luck)


David Empey said...

Interesting! What were the extra characteristics? I suppose Ag was Agility (but how did that differ from Dexterity?) Com was Comeliness, and Sz perhaps was Size, but I can't guess what Dr and Voi were.

These old rules are kind of fun to read about now (takes me back to my glory days), although I suppose I'd find them frustratingly arbitrary and inconsistent nowadays.

John D. Rateliff said...

Dear David.

Yes, Ag = Agility. Dr = Drive and Voi = Voice.

I cdn't tell you the difference between 'Dexterity' and 'Agility', but I bet you the people who came up with these rules and the people who bought into them cd have given you a long and impassioned explanation of not only why those two stats were different but why all right-thinking people wd agree.

On some of my filled-out character sheets included in the folder (I seem to have gone through about a dozen characters in short order, none of them making it beyond third level), three stats (Drive and Size and Constitution) are crossed off or left blank. I have no idea why. --John R.