simplednd wrote:Tim, great question!
SimpleDnD grew out of my love of the classic redbox from 1983. I wanted to teach it to my kids, who at the time were 7, but so much of that rule set is based on random dice rolls. So I started with it as the base and piece by piece clarified and changed the rules adding elements from everywhere. Gone are the 3d6 stats (you only need the bonuses), the spells were changed to be less of a forget it as you use it (lame) and more of a point buy system with mana that increases at each level, so are alignments - heroes are good, monsters are bad, etc. The other big feature that groups really like are Heroic Points used to reroll any roll in the game. Notice was also a concept added from Passive Perception (great idea) as well as benefits for great rolls with the +5 rule. From there each of the classic rules are revisited, updated for consistency, and maybe added.
That's super helpful. Thank you for sharing that. I like the Heroic Points; I enjoy games that offer Icon Relationship Points, Rune Points, Bennies, FATE points, Inspiration, Action Points, Fortune Points, etc. These give a bit of the game narrative back to the players in a way that's explicit and codified in the rules.
simplednd wrote:All of the rules are summarized in a single page - and it works with any d20/Pathfinder or 5e adventure out of the box. At the core it's redbox - it feels old school but plays like any of the current systems.
When you say it works with d20/Pathfinder and 5e out of the box, how do you handle the quickly-diverging math between those systems and BECMI (e.g., Red Box)? Pathfinder numbers get huge at higher levels. 5e uses bounded accuracy to keep the numbers smaller. Hit points vary dramatically, too. They have different saving throws. Are there suggestions on how to perform quick conversions in the SimpleDnD rules? Are the conversions fast enough that they can be performed "real time" by the DM?
I like games with modern, streamlined mechanics but an old-school feel. Castles & Crusades, the Black Hack, and Dungeon Crawl Classics all offer different takes on "old school," each with unique emphases, but they each have unified mechanics.