February 26, 2009

Equipment Lists

Filed under: Games — bilbo @ 9:40 am

I am a strong believer in “My equipment lists suck”.  This is mostly because when I run a game, I am the type of GM that does not worry that much about money and often will just let the little things go. Want a flash light? I am not going to make you take 20 minutes out of game time to go and negotiate with the Ace Hardware guy over the lumens of the flashlight you want. Want a Dragonov Sniper Rifle? Well, then we might have a mini adventures on our hands.

This bleeds over to my game design. I often have what I would term “Don’t sweat the small stuff” approach to equipment in my games. Zombipocalypse is making this rise to the front of my consciousness. Here, I need to have a scavenging system and I think I came up with a neat enough one. All items have a Rarity. This is a number between 1 and 10. When scavenging, a player adds the Rarity to a target number (say 9) and then rolls 3d6 and tries to beat it. The GM can adjust the number (looking for ammo in a knitting store will be different than doing so in a gun store) for conditions and locale. The player may add Mind and Scavenging to the roll. I think it will make it somewhat fun.

Still, I need to write the equipment list…:(


  1. I also like the general approach of rolling some suitable skill to see if character remembered to take something along when that something has not been mentioned. Roll luck/intelligence/intuition to check if you took the piece of equipment along. Roll wealth or resources or stealing to see if you can acquire one quickly.

    Comment by Tommi — February 27, 2009 @ 7:11 am

  2. The scavenging roll looks sweet, Bill – especially for this game. I just wonder if the 1-10 spread is enough. I mean if a player is good enough, they might just find that sniper rifle in the knitting store, which would harm rather than help the feel of the game. Can the GM explicitly – that is not by invoking Rule Zero – disallow scavenging rolls for particular items in particular places? I don’t mind my players scavenging a sniper rifle, but by the power of Grayskull, they won’t find one in that knitting store! That would make me feel better about the 1-10 spread.



    Comment by clash bowley — February 27, 2009 @ 8:07 am

  3. Clash- Yeah, the point to the scavenging rolls is to represent what might in a location that might have it. So, finding canned food in a bus station may be rare, someone might have dumped their groceries. How we address that is by saying canned food has a base 3 Rarity. This makes the base chance 12. Now, the GM says “You are looking for canned food in a bus station? +10!” for a total of 22. Remember, we are talking roll 3d6 so odds get shoved towards an 9, or 10 or 11. Even if they have a scavenger skill and apply the Mind stat you need to make up 11 at the high end.

    And all that said, I will have a blurb about trying to find canned food in an iron foundry;i.e. the GM can always say NO!

    Again, we need to do some playtesting but the numbers look good.

    Tommi – I know what you mean. I often even fore go the luck check. If it is logical you would have rope going into a dungeon I am not going to get hung up about it.

    Thanks guys!

    Comment by bilbo — February 27, 2009 @ 10:21 am

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

Powered by WordPress