Using the LW Gamebooks as a starter adventure

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LoneWolf1984
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Re: Using the LW Gamebooks as a starter adventure

Post by LoneWolf1984 » Thu May 17, 2018 5:33 pm

PhilOfCalth wrote:
Wed May 16, 2018 4:19 pm
LoneWolf1984 wrote:
Thu May 10, 2018 11:33 pm
Then how to handle player death?

So far I'm thinking that when a player falls to 0 EP he is unconscious, unless all players in the group fall to 0 EP during that combat in which case they all die.

Otherwise, after the battle is over a player can head over to an unconscious player and revive him back to 1 EP.

What do you think?
The master rules for death on pg 34 of the Book of Kai Wisdom played well for me, giving a real feel of bleeding out.

I generally don't like a game that doesn't have the possibility of death. Specially in survival scenario's such as FftD, the fear of death should be a constant thing, and the thrill of survival is a counter to that. The "OMG we all survived" doesn't exist otherwise. It's just a "that was fun". Just my opinion though.
I agree, without that tension of "I could die here", a tabletop RPG loses excitement.

The bleeding out rules you refernce look good, and aren't that much different that what I was considering using at first except they require a "luck" roll and skill rolls if a player attempts to heal another player that is near-death.

The only thing is it looks to me like using these rules would require players to have the Willpower attribute.

I wasn't planning on using WIllpower in this beginner level game, but maybe there is another way.

Maybe I can make it so that 0 EP is unconsciousness, and -10 is death.

Each round of combat when a player has their turn come up they must roll a 5 or higher or lose 1 EP. And when combat is over a play must roll a 7 or higher AND a player has to pass a Luck test (roll 5 or higher) in order for the healing to take effect and the player to be "stabilized" and brought back to 1 EP.

Magical healing can maybe give +4 to the skill test.

I like the idea of the fear of death being more present, I just don't see a use for WIllpower Flight From the Dark other than for this situation so Im what I'm writing here is my attempt to come up with another way of doing the same thing essentially (since Willpower would never be lowered during the course of play except for if it was used in this near-death situation.)

I'd definately like to hear more of your thoughts on this. I'm mostly trying to keep everything as simple as possible just because this whole FFTD adventure is really meant to allow everyone to jump right in and get their appetites whet for further adventures, which is where we'll start using the more intricate and advanced LWAG rules like Willpower, fighting styles, special combat actions, etc...

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LoneWolf1984
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Re: Using the LW Gamebooks as a starter adventure

Post by LoneWolf1984 » Thu May 17, 2018 5:42 pm

PhilOfCalth wrote:
Wed May 16, 2018 4:47 pm
LoneWolf1984 wrote:
Thu May 10, 2018 11:40 pm
When it comes to how to handle enemies I agree that for the most part, simply adjusting the number of EP for the enemy is the best way to handle it (double EP for 2 players, triple EP for 3 players, etc).

My initial concern with having only one enemy was based on thinking that the players would be getting in two attacks instead of one but then I realized that each roll on the combat table is for an attack for both the player and the enemy, so each a player attacks the enemy he's attacking gets to attack as well.

Regular RPG combat doesn't usually work like this, two players attacking one enemy would get 2 attacks to the enemies 1, but these players are all gonna be new to RPG's so they won't know the difference! haha

I went through the book and mapped out all the combats.

Image


Almost every enemy encounter is with one enemy. I think what I'll do is that if the players happen to pick a path that has a bunch of "one enemy" encounters, I might occasionally increase the enemy counts (but not increase their EP), so that a variety of encounters is maintained. Otherwise, I will stick to the encounter numbers as written.
In fact RAW characters can only cause endurance damage once per round (BoKW pg 27). So the a single character with a higher EP will not have the same damage output. I'd stick with multiple enemies where you can. Where it doesn't make sense up the CS (a little) as well as the EP, even consider giving the enemy a defense rating.

It'll be worth switching out enemy stats for ones from the RPG, where you have them.
LoneWolf1984 wrote:
Thu May 10, 2018 11:40 pm
I went through the book and mapped out all the combats.
project aon has something like this already under paths:
https://www.projectaon.org/en/Main/FlightFromTheDark
https://www.projectaon.org/en/svg/lw/01fftd.svgz

I don't know if that will suit your needs...
LoneWolf1984 wrote:
Thu May 10, 2018 11:40 pm
Your second point had me thinking, "How will I handle those choose-a-random-number sections?"
The random number sections generally either represent LW's skill or a random event. Where it is related to a skill, that's a skill or disipline test.
Where it's a random event I have just read ahead and picked the most interesting choice with the most number of pictures : )

I hope that helps

Well for combats in this particular way of doing a beginner adventure, using the FFTD game book as an adventure module and keeping the choose-your-own-adventure style for the players, you bring up a good point and one I am still on the fence about.

One on hand I was thinking I could just keep the encounters limited to the number of enemies written in the book, and just double their EP. This could work when I keep to the system to where everytime a player attacks an enemy he gets an attack back. A little unrealistic since the enemies gets to attack multiple times a combat round, but I like said these are new players to RPG's and they might not question that the way seasoned RPGers would.

So the other option is doing like you're describing here and increasing the number of enemies to match player count. And then keeping their stats the same as originally written. Im not sure what would be gained by using the RPG stats vs the stats in FFTD, what is your thought with doing that?
And giving a Defense rating seems like complicating things to me but maybe I'm missing something?

And that's super cool, the link you put to the flow chart with all the book paths and combats mapped out. Thank you much for sharing that I somehow missed it and I was looking for something like that!

And PhilOfCalth I appreciate your thoughtful replies! Definately helping me shape this a little better.

I am planning on running the game next week using all the different tweaks we've come up with here!

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Re: Using the LW Gamebooks as a starter adventure

Post by PhilOfCalth » Fri May 18, 2018 10:17 am

I didn't realize that you planed to not use the master rules, so many of my explanations above may be a bit off.
LoneWolf1984 wrote:
Thu May 17, 2018 5:17 pm
It's a little confusing to me because it looks like you're using the Mongoose version of FFTD and that has a slightly different storyline...so im having trouble figuring out just how are having players input decide which direction to go in the story
I did use the original version of FftD, or the one on project aon. I also made some changes so that people couldn't just read the book and make the correct choices based on that. All of my players having read through these books before : )

My players are also all experienced RPGers, so I gave them options in a different manner than the gamebooks, trying to make more of an RPG of it. Simplification was not one of my goals.

As explained above, I didn't have players roll for random events, I just chose the most interesting ones, or used skill tests.
LoneWolf1984 wrote:
Thu May 17, 2018 5:33 pm
I agree, without that tension of "I could die here", a tabletop RPG loses excitement.
...
Maybe I can make it so that 0 EP is unconsciousness, and -10 is death.
...
Magical healing can maybe give +4 to the skill test.
If you want to keep it simple without coming up with your own death system, you could layer in the D&D 4e system. Every round on their turn if they are at 0EP, they roll 1d10. 9 = back up, 4+ = 1 success, 1-3 = 1 failure, 0 = 2 failures. 3 failures in one combat and you're dead. Any type of healing will get you back up on 1Ep.
LoneWolf1984 wrote:
Thu May 17, 2018 5:42 pm
A little unrealistic since the enemies gets to attack multiple times a combat round, but I like said these are new players to RPG's and they might not question that the way seasoned RPGers would.
You obviously know your players better than I do, but I'd suggest that experience with any other adversarial game (such as wargames, or turn based strategy games) will leave people with a fine instinct for the unfair. It also might be worth a thought that if later you may want to come up with a scenario where the PCs are overwhelmed by enemies and you don't want the give the PCs the same ability, players might find that a bit harsh/unreasonable.

Using the basic rules, this is almost a non problem if you're not telling the players about the EP being lost by their enemies and your describing the enemies abstractly. Then 3 groups of giaks function the same as 1 group that can hit back every time. It's only when you have a solo character that they encounter that it may be an issue.
LoneWolf1984 wrote:
Thu May 17, 2018 5:42 pm
So the other option is doing like you're describing here and increasing the number of enemies to match player count. And then keeping their stats the same as originally written. Im not sure what would be gained by using the RPG stats vs the stats in FFTD, what is your thought with doing that?
And giving a Defense rating seems like complicating things to me but maybe I'm missing something?
This is me thinking you were using the master rules. The RPG stats are still worth looking at for cool/fun mechanics, but I'd say 98% of the time you're fine sticking with the stats the game books.

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Re: Using the LW Gamebooks as a starter adventure

Post by LoneWolf1984 » Sun May 20, 2018 7:27 pm

Yes, my mission here is to come up with an alternate starter-adventure for the LWAG game that can be used by players and Narrators (Game Master's) that have little or no experience. So I'm looking to keep the rules simple.

I'm trying to have it be something that is as plug-n-play and close to zero-prep as possible.

The starter adventure in the LWAG boxed-set is a great option and my intent here is to provide another option.

An option that I can use in my groups and also I'm sharing all my thoughts here so that other groups might benefit as well, and also so I can bounce ideas of the Lone Wolf faithful :)

To that end, I'm trying to make the rules stick as closely as possible to the game books, which is what the Basic rules for the LWAG game pretty much are too.

I described in detail in my earlier posts in this thread as to some of the reasons why I think using the Flight From the Dark gamebook could be such great option for getting new players involved in tabletop roleplaying and/or get them interested in further exploring the world of Magnamund.

My intention is that once I have put a group of players through Flight From the Dark, and they have successfully reached Holmgard, there they will be given a new quest by the King.
In that 2nd adventure, I can start introducing the regular free-form play of tabletop RPGs and the Master level rules


So those are my main goals with this "project"

1. To create a way to use FFTD as a starter adventure for the LWAG that a player aged 8 through 80 could play or GM with 10 minutes or less of prep

2. To share the game notes and any tips generated by myself or other members of the LW community so that other people can use FFTD as a starter adventure for their LWAG games and therefore increase the popularity of the LWAG system which increases the money Cubicle 7 will make which will increase the likelihood of Cubicle 7 to continue to make more material for the world.

In other words, I think the LWAG has the potential to be the BEST beginner-level rpg on the market and that having a choose-your-own-path kind of adventure for a starter module could potentially go a long way towards making people choose the LWAG over other RPG's when it came to running games for first-timers.
Last edited by LoneWolf1984 on Sun May 20, 2018 7:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Using the LW Gamebooks as a starter adventure

Post by LoneWolf1984 » Sun May 20, 2018 7:35 pm

PhilOfCalth wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 10:17 am
I did use the original version of FftD, or the one on project aon. I also made some changes so that people couldn't just read the book and make the correct choices based on that. All of my players having read through these books before : )

My players are also all experienced RPGers, so I gave them options in a different manner than the gamebooks, trying to make more of an RPG of it. Simplification was not one of my goals.

As explained above, I didn't have players roll for random events, I just chose the most interesting ones, or used skill tests.
Ok now that makes sense as I'm reading through the Main Play posts, it is helpful to see how you handled things.
I'm curious if you used the map of FFTD that was posted on the Project Aon forums by a member there or if you made your own map of the land or just kept it all in your head?
Last edited by LoneWolf1984 on Sun May 20, 2018 7:39 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Using the LW Gamebooks as a starter adventure

Post by LoneWolf1984 » Sun May 20, 2018 7:37 pm

If you want to keep it simple without coming up with your own death system, you could layer in the D&D 4e system. Every round on their turn if they are at 0EP, they roll 1d10. 9 = back up, 4+ = 1 success, 1-3 = 1 failure, 0 = 2 failures. 3 failures in one combat and you're dead. Any type of healing will get you back up on 1Ep.
I like this a lot, i think its perfect. Now by any type of healing do you mean any player can apply first aid?
Or healing can only be provided by players with the Kai discipline of Healing or some healing item?
And would you require a skill check when applying healing?


A little unrealistic since the enemies gets to attack multiple times a combat round, but I like said these are new players to RPG's and they might not question that the way seasoned RPGers would.You obviously know your players better than I do, but I'd suggest that experience with any other adversarial game (such as wargames, or turn based strategy games) will leave people with a fine instinct for the unfair. It also might be worth a thought that if later you may want to come up with a scenario where the PCs are overwhelmed by enemies and you don't want the give the PCs the same ability, players might find that a bit harsh/unreasonable.

Using the basic rules, this is almost a non problem if you're not telling the players about the EP being lost by their enemies and your describing the enemies abstractly. Then 3 groups of giaks function the same as 1 group that can hit back every time. It's only when you have a solo character that they encounter that it may be an issue.

yeah good point, i guess that brings me back to making it so every encounter has at least as many enemies as there are players (in order to keep the difficulty level on par with the originial game book)

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Re: Using the LW Gamebooks as a starter adventure

Post by PhilOfCalth » Mon May 21, 2018 1:21 pm

LoneWolf1984 wrote:
Sun May 20, 2018 7:35 pm
I'm curious if you used the map of FFTD that was posted on the Project Aon forums by a member there or if you made your own map of the land or just kept it all in your head?
I was aware that the PCs would want to be going towards Holmgard (SE) and I was aware that the bridge would be a story point that I wanted to hit. I then read all the entries and put the ones I thought were the most fun in front of them. There was a little bit of phantom ogre involved : )
LoneWolf1984 wrote:
Sun May 20, 2018 7:37 pm
I like this a lot, i think its perfect. Now by any type of healing do you mean any player can apply first aid?
Or healing can only be provided by players with the Kai discipline of Healing or some healing item?
And would you require a skill check when applying healing?
For simplicity I'd say only the healing discipline or potion of lampsur (or other magic thing). In the basic game there are no skills, so having the healing disipline, is basically the same as being trained in medicine. If that character isn't trained in medicine then he has no business trying to treat the fatally wounded!

The real question is, can someone who has already received all their healing for the day from the healer, still be brought back up by him? I'd lean towards no... It keeps things simple. I'd just warn people about this when they are healing each-other.
LoneWolf1984 wrote:
Sun May 20, 2018 7:37 pm
yeah good point, i guess that brings me back to making it so every encounter has at least as many enemies as there are players (in order to keep the difficulty level on par with the originial game book)
So long as your descriptions involve them cutting down enemies with good rolls. Be unafraid to not allow the outnumbered foe to hit back. This is all good, I'd say.

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