Thursday, April 1, 2010

Give Me That, Stat!

One of the major issues facing me as I work on this project is what attributes I should use. The Palladium uses a set of 8, six of which are readily identified as the same ones D&D uses (Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma). Physical Beauty is equivalent to the Comeliness score used in earlier editions of D&D. Speed is its own thing, elevating a character's movement rate to the status of a rolled stat.

What's the logic? There are 3 mental stats and 5 physical stats. At least that's how it looks, since Physical Beauty is nominally a physical stat, even though it doesn't provide bonuses to physical stuff.

They actually make a degree of sense if you look at them as a series of Attack/Defense pairs. Strength and Constitution are the "physical" pair. Strength (P.S) has to do with dealing damage, while Constitution (P.E.) is all about resisting and surviving damage. Dexterity (P.P.) and Speed are the movement pair, with Dexterity being the basis for weapon skills and Speed attaching itself to dodging ability and a few other things (for those Palladium nerds out there who remember when high Speed gave a bonus to Dodge). Intelligence (I.Q.) and Wisdom (M.E.) form the mental pair.

That just leaves Charisma (M.A.) and Physical Beauty (P.B.). While they can be considered the "social" pair, they really are an odd couple. But then, many old school games (which Palladium certainly is) do not have strong support for social interaction in the mechanics. Adherents insist that it's part of the charm of these games, that the inability to simply "roll for it" fosters roleplaying and thinking in character.

So what do you think, guys? Should I bring this game fully into the 21st century (or at least the 1990's) with detailed rules for social interaction? Or should I drop all social mechanics and let players resolve it at the table, old school style?

Comments are open!


  1. Most complains go to that direction. So IMHO BTR should have social interaction rules.

  2. I had contemplated a social attack/defense pair of Charisma/Savvy. Getting farther than that is going to take some thinking.

  3. I would like to see a social mechanics pair myself. If you are updating then do it full on!