Very few RPG rulesets survive intact before the first session of a new campaign when placed in my hands, and Swords & Wizardry Complete is no different.
I think the Luck house rule, inspired by the DCC RPG, worked better in game then I could have ever hoped. Actually, it went so well, one of my players is considering using the same house rule, adjusted for his upcoming LotFP Weird Fantasy game. There is no greater flattery in gaming than having a creation of yours, no matter how big or small, used by another.
Anyhow, here's the latest revision to the Luck Rules, as used in my S&W Complete / Wilderlands Campaign that kicked of this past Saturday:
- Luck -
All characters start with 5 points of luck, adjusted as follows -
Thieves + 2
Clerics + 1
Monks + 1
Halflings + 2 (race and class bonuses are cumulative)
Once per encounter, a player can decide to burn luck after rolling a die or after a die roll that would effect him / her (NPC or monster attack / damage / surprise / etc)
1 point spent equals + 2 to the roll
2 points spent equals a reroll
Halflings can spend their "once an encounter" luck ability on another PC at twice the stated cost - 2 points or 4 points
At the end of each session players get back some luck, but in no case more than they started the campaign with:
Thieves get back 1d4
Clerics / Monks get back 1d3
All other classes get back 1d2
Halflings add + 2 to the roll
(multi-class characters use the best class to determine the size of the die)
Note: I'm considering allowing the "burning" of luck - a permanent loss of luck (probably 1d3 points) to avoid death - the PC would instead be a "zero" HP
Certain adventures - large quests at the behest of a god or the like, may result in the permanent increase of a character's Luck total by 1d2 points. These quests would obviously be rare and dangerous.