for the most part this game uses the D&D 3.5 core rules (PHB DMG & MM). but there are several significant differences and additions. the most drastic of these is the skill system. perhapse next in line is the setting itself; we’ll be using the ravenloft core and suplemental books from sword and sorcery. additionally on the topic of setting, it is a bronze age game (think Conan).
Let’s take a look at some diffrences form the PHB
there are four playable races at the very beginning of the game.
human and halfling have some changes from standard
most any class can be played other than Clerics or Paladins and the like. I encourage you to play gritty Bronze-Age-appropriate classes like “Bear Warrior”. oh, and you need to know what class you’re going to take at the beginning of the next chapter. this has to do with skills which is right after XP.
we’ll be using a significantly different Skill system
not much changes here. there’s the addition of Ravenloft feats. feats from the AEG Feats book can be requested on a case-by-case / feat-by-feat bases. of course all feats taken must be made known to me, and I reserve the right to disclude the availability of any feat for setting or thematic reasons.
finally there is the addition of of a mechanic I’m calling “Blunders”. many games feature “Trates” and or “flaws” and that is good; I like it when we get to customize our characters. there’s another mechanic called anti-feats. it was designed to give arch-villans more umph but keep them balanced. players got a hold of it & started giving it to their PCs. OK that’s fine too depending on the game in question. Blunders are somewhare between the two. more varied than “flaws” and less damning than “anti-feats” they’re just a little more spice in your gumbo.
this is how they work: at character creation you role D% and I consult the feats chart in the PH. you get a feat bonus feat (for which you must otherwise qulaify normally) and a dis-ad corrisponding to the feat indicated by your role. sounds like “anti-feats” I know. the diffrence is they are intended not to negate the same feat.
for example: if you role “Leadership” it’s not that you lose the availability of a cohort and followers as friends; you gain a bully and his gang as enimies. :-) see? or let’s say you role weapon focus. you won’t be getting a -1 to hit w that weapon; you’ll be getting a -1(Dodge) to AC when attacked by someone using that weapon. so in that way it’s supposed to enrich the world and your PC, oh yeah and you get a bonus feat. you get to do this up to twice if you want
not much has changed here system-wise. there’s the “5 Colleges” <link> with their respective “Masters” <link> but this is little more than IC flavor. the Ravenloft core rules has some significant changes that we should all be aware of. (I own hard copies of those for use during game). and there’s no ‘cure’ spells or any other magical way of getting HP back. I am allowing “Good Berry” because I like the feel of this under-used spell. and the only other thing I can think of for now is XP as a spell component.
- chip it
we’ll be using Poker chips ala-Deadlands! mechanically they’ll serve as “Action Points” or “Force Points”
more on this later