Friday, March 17, 2006

Mapless D&D Combat, part 1

I'm considering getting rid of the battlemat and figures for my next d20 campaign. The main disadvantage in doing so is that several sections of the rules are designed for to allow for tactical advantages based upon positioning. In this post I'll tackle Area Effects in abstract combat. I'm saving the whole AoO's and Flanking for a future date. But first, how many orcs does my fireball hit?


5' radiusd4d3+1d2+2d2
10' radiusd8d6+2d4+4d3
15' radiusd20*d12+12d6+18d4
20' radiusd30d20+24d10+34d6
15' coned6d4+2d3+3d3
30' coned20*d12+12d6+18d6

*Substitute a d24 if one is available.

Adjust the number rolled based upon foe size. For example, double the number affected if the foes are small and divide the number rolled by 4 for large numbers.

At the DM option specifying a particular target in a group ('I center the effect on the wizard') bump the dice range one category to the left. Crowded groups are treated as average density and average groups as sparse. Half the numbers rolled for sparse groups.

The special 'vs PCs' column is designed to take into account that most players are smart enough to avoid crowding up against a dragon or fireball-lobber. A DM could probably get away with occasionally using this column for tactically-minded NPC groups.