Saturday, August 29, 2009


In my personal Algol campaign (houseruled 1st ed. AD&D), I've removed the weapon restrictions for the various classes, while using the weapon proficiency rules, the weapon vs.armor type modifiers and weapon speed factors.

As well, I've implemented strength and dexterity requirements for various weapons, cribbed from runequest. If you're not strong or dexterous enough for a weapon, the character is unable to gain proficiency with it, and are subject to the class specific nonproficiency penalty.

The reason for these choices are to make the choice of weapons for a character important, adding verisimilitude and for the "adventuring everyman" theme I'm exploring in this campaign.

Not every mercenary is muscular enough to fight well with a great sword or a longbow, and daggers become the weapon of the everyman.

Weapon vs. armor modifers are very interesting, many weapons are absolute monsters against unarmored or lightly armored foes while others are efficient at punching through plate.

It adds a level of tactical complexity to combat, you may have trouble hitting an agile, unarmored target with a heavy, high damage dealing weapon or you may be up the creek without a paddle when your fighting a heavily armored opponent without a weapon that can penetrate their protection. Crossbows are more accurate than bows, and better at punching through armor but bows users can fire two arrows per round.

The combination of limited weapon proficiencies, ability score requirements and armor modifiers (as well as the damage by target size) really differentiates the battle axe from the broad sword, the spear from the short sword,, etc. Your weapon choice matters!

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