Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Now That I Have a Few Sessions of ACKS Under My Belt, a Few Thoughts

Last Saturday was the third session of our aptly named Adventurer Conqueror King or Die! So far I am very happy with the system.

My main complaint is the confusing Throws / Rolls crap. This really didn't need to be so confusing. I've already mentally changed the system to work as every other OSR game with ascending AC does. Actually, it's how ACKS works anyway, but you wouldn't know from the wording.

I'm mentioned some of my house rules previously, so I spare you the repetition. Suffice to say, I haven't broken the system. It plays like the system would basically play untweaked. I didn't really touch anything that was core.

The Reptilian Gladiator might be a tad over powered, especially at lower levels. Our's tears through ranks of goblins like a hot knife passes through butter. Three attacks per round is nothing to sneeze at, especially when there is a strength bonus to the damage. This may require a tweak down the line (its from the Player's Companion).

Combat in general works fine without a grid. When something comes up that requires distance / facing / etc we just work it out, like in days of old.

The whole gold=expo thing, while eminently Old School in nature, was never something I was all that happy with back in my AD&D days. This too may require a tweak, whether it is increasing the expo for defeating foes, expo for completing goals, or something else. No rush on this, just thinking out loud.

It's a real pleasure playing a game with a rulebook I don't need to repeatedly refer to. The few times we needed to look up something (throwing flaming oil) I houseruled for the immediate use and let the players find the section for later.

The key to any RPG is not to get bogged down in looking up rules - pacing is key.

The tables for possible lasting injuries (or death) for going to 0 HP or lower can be brutal, but certainly add a level of suspense to combat that wouldnt be there otherwise. I wasn't sure I would like that part of the system, but I do.

I ran the first 2 session rolling my dice off screen - behind the DM Screen, if you will. Starting with the last session, it's pretty much all been on screen (except for certain rolls the players shouldn't see). Again, it just adds to the excitement of combat and other situations.

As a side note, I whole heartedly endorse DM Improvisation. I just need to make note of any improvisations that suddenly turn into House Rules ;)

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