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Thursday, September 22, 2016

Looking at White Box: Fantastic Medieval Adventure Game (S&W WB House Rules)

I've had more than a few people ask me "why haven't you posted about Charlie Mason's excellent houserules / rewrite of Swords & Wizardry White Box?" My answers were always the same. While working on Swords & Wizardry Light, effectively a strip down of S&W White Box, I did not want to find myself being influenced by another's work. Sure, Charlie was expanding upon White Box and I was distilling it but I didn't want to find myself with some sort of "criss contamination." That's probably too strong a phrase, but I suspect you know what I mean.

Recently, White Box: Fantastic Medieval Adventure Game showed up on my radar again, as its now available in Print on Demand in both softcover ($5.99) and hardcover ($14.99) at OBS (as well as a free download in PDF, so really, you should stop reading my drivel and start reading White Box : Fantastic Medieval Adventure Game.)

We took fairly similar approaches to the thief class (which isn't even in Matt Finch's original WB), which was to do away with the percentage chart and go with a d6 for thief skill resolution. Surprisingly, the Light version of the rules broke out a few of the skills whereas FMAG ties them all up in a single bundle. Funny how that all works out.

There is nothing horribly new in FMAG, but at the same time there is nothing that will turn off your average S&W / OSR gamer. It's a fresh coat of paint to a familiar set of rules and it adds some new life to a well worn ruleset.

Here's a list of changes I lifted from Charlie's blog:
Thief class
Magic-User establishing a tower at 10th level
14 monsters
Better attack damage for some big monsters like golems and dragons, etc
Adventuring Rules; like torches, finding secret doors, etc.
Underworld monster stocking tables
Wilderness Transportation Movement Rates
Jousting rules
Reaction roll table 
Modified the Sleep spell, like victims HD
Other small changes here and there, for example; with Clerics Charlie changed the reason for only being allowed blunt weapons to secret religious practices rather than being forbidden to shed blood.
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1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the shout out Erik! The thief class added is from the man himself; James Spahn. I modified the Thievery chance of success a bit though.

    I didn't want to change it up too much. It's still very similar to the game everyone knows. I was hoping to build up the community around the game more, by making it more accessible from different outlets and to have more frequent updates. You said it best "It's a fresh coat of paint to a familiar set of rules and it adds some new life to a well worn ruleset"