Posted by : David Guyll June 03, 2016

I mentioned in this post that we were considering changing adventurer Defenses to static values and giving monsters Attack Pools, and today we finally got around to running three playtests back-to-back to see how it (plus armor-as-Wounds) worked in actual play.

The short answer is great. The game ran just as quickly and smoothly as before. Even better, since we already have the math and numbers largely figured out from numerous playtest sessions and even a long-term campaign, we didn't have to tweak anything much.

In every instance Melissa's fighter was dropped during the last encounter, though in her defense she was on the front line getting hammered by numerous monsters at once, and I was pretty much eyeballing encounters (going with a ratio of something like one monster per character as a baseline).

We only used armor-as-Wounds in the third playtest (wanted to see if static Defenses was any good, first), but we really liked it as it provided the adventurers with a handful of "buffer " Wounds, that could be recovered without relying on magical healing, Reserve Wounds, and/or a short-term healing rate. You get 1-3 depending on what type of armor you're wearing (magic/masterwork armor could have more), and when you're not in combat you can mark off uses from an armorer kit to replenish them.

We'll playtest both changes a few more times, but all signs are pointing to keeping them both: it makes sense, gives adventurers something to spend their cash on, and still keeps things simple.

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