Thursday, February 17, 2011

Putting the L in SPECIAL

My last post about using bottle caps for bennies got me thinking about the role of luck in Fallout and Savage Worlds respectively. In the SPECIAL ruleset, Luck is a primary stat (if somewhat less important than the others) and can be modified during character creation. It affects how likely the character is to succeed in a roll or score a critical hit. There are certain Perks which can only be taken with a high enough level of Luck.

Savage Worlds on the other hands only has the metagame bennies which allow a player to reroll an action or used for soaking damage taken. These are distributed equally to all players. The Luck and Great Luck Edges can be taken to get up to two additional bennies, but that's it. It comes down to it that in SW you can get (limited) more luck, but not actually better luck. As I like the role of Luck in SPECIAL, I'd like to try and tweak it so luck has a bigger impact in my SW Fallout campaign.

(Of course there's the irony that making a character luckier would reduce the player's reliance on the luck of the dice to achieve successful actions, but that's just getting too philosophical for me. ;) )

As creating a Luck Attribute would throw the balance of character creation off, it would probably best be handled through Edges. I'm thinking stuff like:

Background Edge: Better Luck (Luck): +1 bonus when spending a benny

Combat Edge: Better Criticals (Fighting or Shooting d10, Luck): +1 damage bonus on a critical hit, or +1d8/1d10 damage instead of 1d6

Combat Edge: More Criticals (Fighting or Shooting d12, Great Luck): Additional die damage on two or more raises on the attack roll

Professional Edge: Scrounger (Notice d8, Luck): Additional loot found when scavenging

Weird Edge: Mysterious Stranger (Ch 2, Luck): A mysterious stranger occasionally shows up and helps out in fights

These are all off the top of my head so balance might be an issue. I wouldn't want to make players feel like they have to take the Luck Edge when creating their characters, or else miss out on too much cool stuff. If anyone has any ideas on the subject, I'd be interested to hear them!

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