28 March 2021

E-Mail-Friendly Fudge Dice Roller

Sometimes I like to do a Google search for "FudgeRPG" and see if there is anything new (or anything at all written by me) in the results. Today, I discovered an online Fudge dice roller for use in online games (presumably play-by-e-mail). The PBE Games: Fudge Dice Roller enables one to set the base level, apply a modifier, and include a description for up to five rolls in one e-mail. I haven't played Fudge online (yet), but this seems to be a useful tool.

27 February 2021

Random Potion Description Generator

Sometimes it is expedient to use a random table to generate treasure that may be found by player characters in the course of their adventures. What these tables often lack, however, are descriptions, which are left to the GM to invent if he or she is so inclined. The following tables are designed to help GMs concoct spur-of-the-moment descriptions of one particular type of treasure: potions.

Roll on as many or few of the tables as desired to create a description for any magical potion. If, like me, you are not an advocate of the philosophy that all enchanted and/or cursed items are identical unless used, worn, or consumed, then you might find it useful to make a note of any descriptions generated. Then, whenever the item is encountered again, the player characters will be able to recognize what it is likely to be. Note that any description does not necessarily indicate what all potions of that variety are like, but what that particular recipe is like. Healing potions from different regions or different schools of healing craft may be very different from one another yet have the same curative properties. Potions with very different effects may also have have similar descriptions. Careful adventurers who catalogue the descriptions and effects of various potions should be rewarded for their efforts by a faithful consistency in representing previously encountered potion recipes.

These tables are not all-encompassing. Although it is possible to generate a wide variety of descriptions using them, the GM is advised to add extra details to complete the potion description. For instance, a randomly generated potion might be described as transparent, syrupy, sweet, and hot, with a hint of clover. Another potion could be opaque, syrupy, sweet, and cool, with a silvery blue color and tasting faintly of raspberries. Any two different potions may have one or more qualities in common (including extra details), but none will have all of them in common. If they do, then they are of the same recipe, and thus possess the same properties.

These tables are for use with Fudge dice, but a d6 [or, indeed, a d3 or d5 as appropriate] may be substituted.

Table A
1dFResult
+Transparent
0Translucent
-Opaque

Table B
1dFResult
+Effervescent
0Watery
-Syrupy

Table C
1dFResult
+Sweet
0Salty
-Bitter

Table D
2dFResult
+2Hot
+1Warm
0Tepid
-1Cool
-2Cold

Bonus potion: The potion of aquatic existence is translucent, effervescent, salty, cold, green in color, luminescent in the dark, and similar to broccoli in flavor. It grants the drinker the ability to exist comfortably underwater for seven days. The beneficiary of this enchantment is able to breathe underwater, survive the pressures of the greatest depths, and withstand the coldest waters with no harm whatsoever.

These tables are meant to generate descriptions for previously determined potions, but the potion above is an example of generating the description first and inventing a potion based on the results. The extra details were added once I decided on the nature of the potion.

[Originally posted in Fudgery.net/fudgerylog on 27 May 2011.]

30 January 2021

A Faulty Nomenclature Is No Gift

I am not the first to complain about the terms "gift" and "fault" as they are used in Fudge. How can virtues such as Honesty or Code of Honor be faults? They are limitations of a sort, to be sure. One could even call them disadvantages, which is certainly more accurate and descriptive, but they are in no way faults. If anything, they are strengths. I am aware that "advantage" and "disadvantage" were avoided because of their use in GURPS, but those terms are not trademarked, and let's face it, they are self-explanatory, which is really the ultimate test of rules clarity, especially for a game like Fudge. So, in my own games, I'll be trading "gift" and "fault" for "advantage" and "disadvantage" because I will take any measure necessary to reduce confusion and get to the role-playing as quickly as possible.

31 December 2020

Fudge Forward 2021

Let's make 2021 the year we play more Fudge and make (or revive) more Fudge-focused Web logs.

30 November 2020

Fudge Thought of the Day 2020-11-30

Sometimes I wonder if Fudge might benefit from "swingier" results than are typically afforded by 4dF. I know some consider heavily centered rolls to be preferable, but I consider it somewhat less than exciting. Using 3dF or 2dF increases the randomness, but also reduces the range of possible results. Still, if it smooths the curve a bit, it might be worth trying.

25 October 2020

In Memory of Fan Sites

One of the things I really miss about the 1990s and the early 2000s was the proliferation of dedicated RPG fan sites. Before the blogs, gaming hobbyists built their own sites through which they could share their house rules, settings, and variants, and they often reached their audience with the help of Web rings whereby sites could link with other sites of the same interest. Fudge was one of those games that benefited from the creativity and prolificacy of its fan-maintained sites, and my own Fudgery.net was my modest contribution (unfortunately close to the end of the Golden Age of RPG fan sites).

Fan sites were surpassed by Web logs, and link pages were rapidly made obsolete by broken links, just as Web logs were, in time, eclipsed by Google+. Now that Google+ has been relegated to the dustbin of bittersweet nostalgia, blogs are making a comeback. I recently started a fifth gaming blog (as if trying to post regularly to four of them were not difficult enough), and although I enjoy the medium (even as I acknowledge that I am really just whispering into the hurricane), I still find myself yearning for those oases of the Internet where hobbyists shared their lore, their expertise, and their passion with likeminded explorers. Most of those well-loved sites are gone, like the fanzines of yore, but they are not forgotten. Rest in peace, Fudge fan sites in particular. You were Superb.

03 October 2020

Return of the Optional Wound Gauges

I just rediscovered one of my old articles from Fudgerylog and added it to the Elaborations tab. Read about some alternative ways to handle injury in Wound Gauge Options for Fudge.

01 October 2020

Return of the Glossary

I just thought I would point out that a new tab has been added to Creative Reckoning, namely the Glossary or, as it was originally known in Fudgery.net, the Glossary of Fudge and General Role-Playing Terms. First posted in 2007, it slipped my mind that I had not yet transferred it here. So, here it is.

30 September 2020

How to Adapt the Palladium Compendium of Contemporary Weapons to Fudge

The Palladium Weapon series of books is a resource requiring a bare minimum of effort by the GM to adapt to Fudge. As it states on the cover of every book in the series, it is "For use with any game system" and as such, it seems perfectly suited for Fudge. Even the game-related abstractions can be used with little or no conversion necessary.

The Compendium of Contemporary Weapons

The information presented in this article will enable you to use the Palladium book The Compendium of Contemporary Weapons, written by Maryann Siembieda (with additional writing by Matthew Balent and Kevin Siembieda) and published by Palladium Books, in your own Fudge game. The Compendium of Contemporary Weapons is required to make use of this information.

The first section deals with firearm ammunition, including definitions of terms, descriptions of different types of ammunition, prices, and suggestions of how to translate firearm damage into game terms. Much of the material can be used without modification.

Ammunition Damage and Penetration Tables

Tissue Damage Rating: The Tissue Damage Rating system offers a numerical damage value for each type of round rather than each type of weapon. Thus, any weapon that fires a .45 bullet will cause the same amount of damage, although other characteristics of the weapon (such as effective range, capacity, etc.) may vary. A table lists the ratings as General Damage Ratings (a number followed by a description) and Tissue Damage (a suggested die roll). Both refer to tissue damage, but the first can be used in Fudge as the offensive factor of the weapon. This number (in parentheses) is used in the cartridge descriptions.

Penetration Values: The Penetration Value of a round refers to its ability to penetrate hard (i.e. non-flesh) substances, such as armor. A table lists the ratings as numbers followed by descriptions, both of which can be used in Fudge as the penetration factor of a weapon.

Incorporating Tissue Damage and Penetration Values

In summary, one can refer to a firearm as having both an offensive factor and a penetration factor. The offensive factor is the ability of the bullet to cause injury to a target. The penetration factor is the ability of a bullet to penetrate hard substances such as armor. If the penetration factor is lower than the defensive factor of a piece of armor or other substance, the bullet is deflected by or embedded in the armor or substance even if the bullet's offensive factor is higher. If the penetration factor is higher than the defensive factor, then the bullet uses whichever factor is higher to determine damage: offensive factor or penetration factor (plus relative degree). The defensive factor of the target is then subtracted from this number.

Damage Ratings by Cartridge Type

This section is divided into Revolvers: Caliber Cartridges & Damage, Automatic Pistols: Millimeter Cartridges & Damage, and Rifle Cartridges & Damage. In all cases, the Tissue Damage (offensive factor) is listed in parentheses, and the Penetration Value (penetration factor) is denoted by the initials P.V. A brief description is provided for each cartridge.

The section Special Cartridges, Bonuses & Penalties may be used unmodified.

Firearms & Damage in RPGs

Shock Rules (optional): Use unmodified if so desired.

Blood Loss (optional): This could be adapted by simply having each wound increase to the next higher severity per minute.

Hit Location, Damage & Penalties (optional): This can be used as is, for the most part, but it could slow combat considerably more than other Hit Location rules that have been designed for Fudge.

Damage at Point-Blank Range (optional): Use unmodified if so desired.

Body Armor

For Fudge purposes, it is probably best to simplify the way body armor is handled by reducing it to defensive factors. Each type of body armor is described as belonging to a particular class with various characteristics. The characteristics most relevant to Fudge follow.

Class I/IA: defensive factor +4

Class II/IIA: defensive factor +5

Class IIIA: defensive factor +6

Class IVA: defensive factor +6 (also resistant to many special rounds)

Class IVB/C: defensive factor +6 (also resistant to all special rounds)

Class V: defensive factor +6 (also resistant to all special rounds and .30-06)

Statistics of Firearms

Firearms are divided into sections on Revolvers & Pistols, Rifles, Shotguns, Submachine Guns, and Machine Guns. In all cases, replace the listed damage with the offensive factor derived from the cartridge used.

Statistics of Other Weapons

The remaining sections are devoted to Combat Hand Grenades, Light Support Weapons, Special Support Weapons & Anti-Tank, Anti-Aircraft, Mortars, Pyrotechnics, Surveillance Equipment, and Tanks & Armored Vehicles. Most of the information can be used as is, but the damage ratings will have to be adapted according to the needs of one's particular Fudge game. Structural Damage Capacity (along with the damage ratings listed for anti-tank, anti-aircraft, and other heavy weapons) may be used as a parallel method of combat resolution for use with vehicles and buildings, or it may be modified to one's own Fudge game or ignored entirely.

[Originally posted in Fudgery.net in 2007.]

29 September 2020

How to Adapt the Palladium Book of Weapons & Castles to Fudge

The Palladium Weapon series of books is a resource requiring a bare minimum of effort by the GM to adapt to Fudge. As it states on the cover of every book in the series, it is "For use with any game system" and as such, it seems perfectly suited for Fudge. Even the game-related abstractions can be used with little or no conversion necessary.

Weapons & Castles

The information presented in this article will enable you to use the Palladium book of Weapons & Castles, compiled by Matthew Balent and published by Palladium Books, in your own Fudge game. Weapons & Castles is required to make use of this information.

The first section of the book deals with the subject of ranged weapons prior to the era of gunpowder. The main categories are Bows and Crossbows and require little work for adaptation to a Fudge game. The remaining sections, Castles and Sieges, require no modification at all and can be used as is. Skills such as Weapon Use (Siege Engine) or Engineering (Siege Engine) and the determination of Ranged Combat Difficulty Levels are all that need to be added.

The terms used in the first section (and their Fudge interpretations where appropriate) follow.

Missile Weapons

TYPE: For bows, the categories are: Self, Built, Backed or Composite. For crossbows, the categories are: Wood, Composite, Backed, or Steel.

LENGTH: Use the metric measurement or convert as desired.

MASS: Use the metric measurement or convert as desired.

PULL: This is a measurement of the force required to draw the bow.

EFFECTIVE RANGE: This is the typical range limit of the weapon's accuracy. Hitting a target beyond this range is possible only if firing en masse at a target.

MAXIMUM RANGE: This is the absolute range limit of the weapon.

DAMAGE: Adjust this number by +1 to account for the sharpness of arrows, bolts, and darts. For blunt projectiles such as rocks, stones, and lead bullets, leave the listed number unmodified.

Arrows and bolts have two types of damage factors: offensive factors and penetration factors. Offensive factors consist of the listed damage +1 (to account for sharpness as noted above). Penetration factors are identical to offensive factors except for Scythian bows, Turkish bows, and long bows. For these bows, the penetration factor is calculated by doubling the listed damage and then adding +1 for sharpness.

The offensive factor is the ability of the projectile to cause injury to a target. The penetration factor is the ability of a projectile to penetrate hard substances such as armor. If the penetration factor is lower than the defensive factor of a piece of armor or other substance, the projectile is deflected by or embedded in the armor or substance even if the projectile's offensive factor is higher. If the penetration factor is higher than the defensive factor, then the projectile uses whichever factor is higher to determine damage: offensive factor or penetration factor (plus relative degree). The defensive factor of the target is then subtracted from this number.

In cases where armor is described as possessing a variety of defensive factors, the penetration factor of hunting arrows and hunting bolts are compared to the armor's thrust defensive factor, whereas the penetration factor of military arrows and military bolts are compared to the armor's impact defensive factor.

SHOTS PER MINUTE: The typical length of a round in Fudge is pi seconds long (or approximately 3 seconds), so the rate of fire becomes the following:

SHOTS/MINSHOTS/INTERVAL OF ROUNDS
.671 per 30 rounds
11 per 20 rounds
1.51 per 15 rounds
21 per 10 rounds
41 per 5 rounds
121 per 2 rounds

[Originally posted in Fudgery.net in 2007.]