Regular readers can probably tell that sometimes I just blog about whatever fool thing pops into my head when I'm sitting in front of the computer. But sometimes crazy ideas come to me when I'm not near one of these new-fangled electric calculation devices. It used to be I would scrawl these flashes of dumbspiration onto whatever paper was handy. But recently, in an attempt to keep better track of this stuff, I've started carrying a little notebook, a pocket-sized Moleskine cahier. I get mine at one of the local big box bookstores. You can get blank pages, line rules, or graph paper. Of course I go for the latter so I can make dungeon maps.
Here's the latest thing I did in my notebook. I got it into my head that maybe it would be neat to make OD&D monsters that were scaleable by level, like the way T&T monsters are sometimes expressed as X number of Monster Rating points times the level they're encountered on. This idea came to me at work, so over my lunch break I got out my copy of Rat On A Stick (What? You don't keep yours in your briefcase?) and wrote down the critters on the wandering monster chart. I then attempted to make scaleable stats for them. Here's what I ended up with:
Under this scheme most monsters simply gain Hit Dice. Some monsters gain increased damage, such as a 9th and 10th level Rats biting for 2d6 or the ogre's ever-biggening club attack. Some critters gain additional numbers, listed as a simple "+d6" or "+2d6", while others gain friends (basically an additional wandering monster teams up with them). So a 10th level Orc encounter consists of 3d6 big, burly 2 hit dice orcs being bossed around by some other 10th level monster, while a 4th level Harpy encounter consists of a normal group of harpies plus d6 (presumably charmed) friends.