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Monday, March 08, 2010

Saving Throws

Even though it may get my Old Schooler Card revoked, I have to say I like the 3-save system (I made into a 4-save system by re-adding an old school element) more than the archaic 6-save system from back in the day. Having 3 categories for general use that shows how well a character can resist those effects instead of arbitrary attack forms is alot easier (to me) to just tell a character to roll X save without really needing to think it over. Back in the day, I had a hard time differentiating between Magic Wands and Spells for oddball saving throws. But this is the system I use for Onn:

From time to time, a spell or some other kind of hazard requires you to make a saving throw. A successful saving throw means that the character (or monster) avoids the threat or lessens its effect. Each character class has a group of Saving Throw target numbers, which gets lower and lower as the character gains levels. To make a saving throw, roll a d20. If the result is equal to or higher than the character’s saving throw target number, the saving throw succeeds. Monsters can also make saving throws (a monster’s saving throw target number is listed in the monster’s description). There are three typical categories of saving throws: Ego, Dodge and Toughness. Each covers a select type of effects and are listed below:

• Dodge - Dodge saving throws are used to lessen or avoid some targeted attack forms, such as a traps and the like.
• Ego - Ego saving throws are used to avoid mind-affecting attacks and effects that would override the character’s own thinking and/or decision making ability or self identity.
• Toughness - Toughness saving throws are used to resist effects that alter or cause damage the physical form or body of a character.

The fourth type of saving throw is used in special situations that aren’t affected by class or level of a character because it relies on the character’s inherent ability to withstand great physical and/or spiritual adversity: the System Shock. This is checked on percentile dice (d%) rolled over a number based on the character’s Constitution ability score. The System Shock is used when the character’s physical and spiritual being are damaged or transformed so drastically that a typical saving throw would not apply - suffering magical aging, being changed into a different form, being brought back from the dead, taking over 25 points of damage from a single, non-magical source, such as a single attack (even if it is from a magical weapon), or over 50 points from a magical source (such as a Fireball). These last two events causes instant death regardless of current hit points if the System Shock saving throw is failed.

Even though player characters have their saving throws delineated by class and category, monsters use a single saving throw. The Referee should feel free to add any modifiers he deems fit. The Referee is the final arbiter of what type of saving throw an attack form uses if there is any confusion or question. Regardless of modifiers, a natural ‘1’ or ‘01’ always fails, whereas a natural ’20’ or ‘00’ always succeeds.

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