20 Quick Questions, Answers

Sourced from Jeff’s Gameblog, here are 20 quick questions for a rpg campaign.

  1. Ability scores generation method? Standard purchase method using 7 base points for all Magi, Companions, and Grogs
  2. How are death and dying handled? Death is permanent, and is hopefully rare. Dying is typically painful, and prolonged. Characters will hopefully die due to magical backlash rather than arrows.
  3. What about raising the dead? Not as a true return to life, but necromancers an do some funky things.
  4. How are replacement PCs handled? Resolved as story elements as appropriate. Allowed, but discouraged.
  5. Initiative: individual, group, or something else? Individual, re-rolled each round.
  6. Are there critical hits and fumbles? How do they work? Yup, both allowed, and faciliated via
  7. Do I get any benefits for wearing a helmet? Its assumed that all combatants in armor are wearing a helm or skull cap. If they say they are not, then they do not get the protection in that area – although no real hit location rules apply, I’d hand-wave a penalty.
  8. Can I hurt my friends if I fire into melee or do something similarly silly? Yes, often, always.
  9. Will we need to run from some encounters, or will we be able to kill everything? Players need to expect that some things are just too nasty, and they should flee.
  10. Level-draining monsters: yes or no? Nope. Souls yes, but the game does not have levels.
  11. Are there going to be cases where a failed save results in PC death? in Ars Magica that is like having your resistance penetrated, so yes – it could occur.
  12. How strictly are encumbrance & resources tracked? Roughly, and brutally punished if it is found to be exploited.
  13. What’s required when my PC gains a level? Training? Do I get new spells automatically? Can it happen in the middle of an adventure, or do I have to wait for down time? Spend XP where you like, subject to be logical to what you have encountered.
  14. What do I get experience for? The passing of time and defeating major story objectives.
  15. How are traps located? Description, dice rolling, or some combination? Both magic and skills + roll can be used.
  16. Are retainers encouraged and how does morale work? Almost mandatory, and they are played by other players, so they often get a lot of life, and full personalities of their own.
  17. How do I identify magic items? As per the InVi rules and lab activity – its not hard to know, but darn hard to find out all the information
  18. Can I buy magic items? Oh, come on: how about just potions? Yes, but characters won’t be able to afford many. Spend wisely.
  19. Can I create magic items? When and how? Baseline core rules all are used, and encouraged.
  20. What about splitting the party? Love doing it, as it makes for better stories.

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