The ease of cross-pollination between the two is not a coincidence since most of the games we crank out here at The ChaosGrenade are either based on the WyRM System or grew from it. The goal of this blog post is to present a variant resolution mechanic for WR&M while allowing the character creation process to remain intact with minimal edits or conversions.
While WR&M is already a pretty elegant game, playing it using the Fate’s Wheel mechanic or the d10 variant may speed up play even more for those on a time crunch, those wanting to play in situations or locations where dice aren’t optimal, or those who feel the original 1d6 mechanic was too simplistic for their tastes. And like we’ve posted earlier, this system works great for Play-by-Posts.
Overview of the Fate’s Wheel Mechanic
For those just tuning in and are unfamiliar with our CarPG resolution mechanic — visualize a wheel that is numbered 1-10 in a clockwise formation. For any action where dice are rolled for the player, they choose a number in that range. The GM likewise chooses a number and keeps it to their self. The player then adds a bonus (usually equal to the related attribute and skill) and this becomes their Success Range. If the GM’s chosen number is within that range, the player succeeds. If not, they fail.
For groups that prefer die rolling, the same results can be determined using a 1d10 roll — roll the die, add your bonuses, and if it’s equal to 10 or higher you succeed.
There’s a bit more depth involved when it comes to opposed rolls and combat, but for brevity’s sake I recommend downloading the 8-page CarPG document for more information.
Applying this to Warrior, Rogue & Mage
The biggest change here is that Difficulty Level is taken out of the game. This can be seen as either good or bad — on the plus side, it keeps pacing quick and the narrative moving along. On the down side, Game Masters who prefer scaling challenges may be put off. I personally recommend just arbitrating difficulty by adding a penalty to the player success range — a every -1 or +1 is roughly a 10% change.
Character creation as it is should work fine. The following are the few adjustments that would need to be made:
- No Defense Rating: Since the CarPG mechanic uses no Difficulty Levels, there’s no keeping up with Defense Ratings.
- Armor Value: Armor works differently. Cut the listed WR&M armor value in half (rounded down). Armor is now used to penalize the opponent’s Success Range. Shields are now at a flat +1.
- Spellcasting: In lieu of the lack of Difficulty Level, a simple solution is that the caster takes a penalty to their Success Range equal to the circle of the spell being cast. Mana costs and armor penalties remain the same.
- Damage and Other Effects: Weapons now have a flat damage value, equal to half their maximum rating (rounded up.) Any effect that calls for a die roll (such as magic or poison) takes the average result.
- Talents: The core talents, overall, should work fine as written. It gets weird with the optional racial talents — Exceptional Attribute and No Talent For Magic require rolling 2 dice and taking the best or worst result. With the d10, it should be no problem. On the Wheel of Fate, I’d probably allow two number picks and take the best/worst result of the two. And again, anything that requires a roll versus a DL I’d leave it up to the GM to adjudicate.
A big thing to note is that the CarPG mechanics place a cap on the maximum bonus applied to the Success Range is +8. I’d say any bonuses going over will help mitigate penalties, but otherwise there will always be a 1 in 10 shot at failure.
Using any of NPC’s and critters in the Bestiary chapter should work fine. Just remember the above statement on the final SR never being more than +8. Also, ignore the defense ratings, and whatever is listed as an armor bonus cut in half.
I’ll admit this isn’t a perfect hack, and mileage will vary based on personal tastes. It’s also centered on the core WR&M document — supplemental materials and options may make or break this thought exercise. Still, for me it looks like a very sexy variant that can breathe some more life into the title.
Opposite of that, looking at these guide lines may inspire those wanting to run a fantasy CarPG game to “go back” to the source and troll for some ideas on how to implement magic.
Hope this has been a fun read — feel free to drop a line in the comments or ask any questions or poke holes in any of the ideas I’ve presented here.