Steve Jackson Games - Site Navigation
Home General Info Follow Us Search Illuminator Store Forums What's New Other Games Ogre GURPS Munchkin Our Games: Home

Go Back   Steve Jackson Games Forums > Roleplaying > Roleplaying in General

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 03-08-2018, 09:30 AM   #1
Jackal
 
Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: New England
Default Parabolic Curves & Funky Dice?

Idle curiosity:

Has anyone else played around with alternatives to bell curves? That is, replacing Xd6 as a roll mechanism?

(No, I'm not suggesting TFT replace Xd6. At least not yet, lol)

We ended up using 2@3d20 and were very happy with the results. (Translation: roll 3d20 and use the middle value rolled.)

Plug that formula into http://anydice.com and then compare it to 3d6. You'll see something cool: a parabolic curve instead of a bell curve.

Why the heck did we bother? And why use parabolic? Can't we leave well-enough alone?

Smoother curve. Modifiers shift the odds less dramatically across the range.

Broader range. Full 1-20 instead of 3-18 makes for more results and easier OSR scenario conversion.

Funky dice!! OK, totally stole this from DCC RPG: way better "advantage/disadvantage" mechanic: 4d6 becomes 2@3d24. 5d6 becomes 2@3d30. You can even model, "Uber surfing, dude: roll 2@3d16 vs. DX to totally crush that wave!"

Wicked fun: after the initial "Huh?" factor, players LOVE it. More dice to roll! Weird dice to roll! Extra moment of excitement! It's like a mini-game where you try to be the first to scan the die and pick the middle one. Silly, but I suspect it acts as an intermittent reinforcer.

Thoughts? Crickets?
Jackal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2018, 09:35 AM   #2
Andrew Hackard
Munchkin Line Editor
 
Andrew Hackard's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Austin, TX
Default Re: Parabolic Curves & Funky Dice?

Moved thread because it's not a specific TFT question.
__________________
Andrew Hackard || Munchkin Line Editor, Steve Jackson Games

Twitter: @SJGames || Facebook: SJ Games and Munchkin || Medium: @SJGames
Instagram: @stevejacksongames || YouTube: Steve Jackson Games

New Munchkin player? Visit our Munchkin 101 forum!
Andrew Hackard is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2018, 11:02 AM   #3
JLV
 
JLV's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Default Re: Parabolic Curves & Funky Dice?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jackal View Post
Idle curiosity:

Has anyone else played around with alternatives to bell curves? That is, replacing Xd6 as a roll mechanism?

(No, I'm not suggesting TFT replace Xd6. At least not yet, lol)

We ended up using 2@3d20 and were very happy with the results. (Translation: roll 3d20 and use the middle value rolled.)

Plug that formula into http://anydice.com and then compare it to 3d6. You'll see something cool: a parabolic curve instead of a bell curve.

Why the heck did we bother? And why use parabolic? Can't we leave well-enough alone?

Smoother curve. Modifiers shift the odds less dramatically across the range.

Broader range. Full 1-20 instead of 3-18 makes for more results and easier OSR scenario conversion.

Funky dice!! OK, totally stole this from DCC RPG: way better "advantage/disadvantage" mechanic: 4d6 becomes 2@3d24. 5d6 becomes 2@3d30. You can even model, "Uber surfing, dude: roll 2@3d16 vs. DX to totally crush that wave!"

Wicked fun: after the initial "Huh?" factor, players LOVE it. More dice to roll! Weird dice to roll! Extra moment of excitement! It's like a mini-game where you try to be the first to scan the die and pick the middle one. Silly, but I suspect it acts as an intermittent reinforcer.

Thoughts? Crickets?
Ty Beard has. He replaced the XD6 system with a flat D20 roll. He wrote several extensive comments over on the "The Fantasy Trip" thread on this subject, along with a couple of other comments on various other rules-centric threads. Well worth reading if you have the time to look them up.

Personally, I don't agree with doing that for TFT -- one of the things that makes TFT work as well as it does as a game is the bell-curve results -- but I can see why people might like to do so. Ty's system also has the benefit of flattening the Attribute Bloat curve somewhat (though the problem still lurks out there in the distance...).
JLV is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2018, 08:13 PM   #4
Jackal
 
Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: New England
Default Re: Parabolic Curves & Funky Dice?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JLV View Post
Ty Beard has. He replaced the XD6 system with a flat D20 roll. He wrote several extensive comments over on the "The Fantasy Trip" thread on this subject, along with a couple of other comments on various other rules-centric threads. Well worth reading if you have the time to look them up.

Personally, I don't agree with doing that for TFT -- one of the things that makes TFT work as well as it does as a game is the bell-curve results -- but I can see why people might like to do so. Ty's system also has the benefit of flattening the Attribute Bloat curve somewhat (though the problem still lurks out there in the distance...).
Cool cool. I will look those up. Thanks for the tip.

And yes, I can see how it would help with bloat -- but as I've alluded in other threads, I don't think there's a solution to that without separating Attributes from Pools -- but that is waaay off topic so I'll leave it at that.

Thanks again.

- Jack
Jackal is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
bell curve, dice, funky dice, odds, parabolic curve

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Fnords are Off
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 08:14 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.