I worked on some tables and graphs to represent the dungoen world probabilities.

I worked on some tables and graphs to represent the dungoen world probabilities.

I worked on some tables and graphs to represent the dungoen world probabilities.

Take a look at the second sheet, it represents the probabilities for the rule variant of advantage and disadvantage.

It’s taken from ‘The Walking Mind’ (http://walkingmind.evilhat.com/)

who wanted to transplant this idea from D&D5e to DungeonWorld

as he describes it :

“What we did do is replace +1/–1 forward with a variant on the Advantage/Disadvantage rule from 5e. +1 forward became an advantage, and with advantage, the player rolled 3 dice rather than 2, and counted the two higher ones. –1 forward became a disadvantage, where the player rolls 3 dice and keeps the two lowest.

So, for example, when Sanguinus charged, it gave Dogan a +1 forward on his subsequent Hack and Slash roll (because of a Paladin ability). Normally that would mean he’d roll 2d6 + 4 (he has an 18 Strength), but in this case he rolled 3d6 and got a 2, 4 and 5. Taking the best 2 (4 and 5) he rolled a 9, plus 3 for a 12, a most palpable hit.

For the curious, the math is that an advantage or disadvantage equates to approximately +/- 1.5, so it’s a little more robust, but still in bounds. Importantly, it still keeps the result within the curve, so you get some interesting results. If you haven’t used bonus or penalty dice before this may seem weird, but for us, the experience felt really smooth. More, it made the +/–1’s simply feel a little more engaging. I’d be hard pressed to say exactly why (perhaps just the tactile component, perhaps the die making the bonus or penalty feel a little more concrete). Also, “advantage” is just nicer language than “+1 forward).We’ll absolutely be using it in the future.”


I’m planning on using it in my next session for the same reasons he just described.

What do you guys think ?

21 thoughts on “I worked on some tables and graphs to represent the dungoen world probabilities.”

  1. I think this is the best change to DW yet. We’ve implemented it a few times. I really like it.

    My next step: Get rid of bonuses altogether (like that paladin with the +3 strength? Instead of a +3, he gets +3 extra dice), in order to get rid of the arithmetic.

    But, that’s a ways down the line. I haven’t yet talked anyone into it.

  2. I should note, I have now been using this hack for a while, and It still holds up very well.

    The one oddity is when characters get a +2.  it doesn’t happen often, but it’s come up once or twice.  It’s rare enough that it probably doesn’t break anything to give 2 advantage dice in that situation, but making it an advantage die +1 might be more apt (or possibly just take the 5e path that any amount of +1s equals advantage)

  3. William Nichols I’ve been pondering a hack along those lines as well. You can actually do Risus style chargen with ti really well – here are 10 dice, divide them among broad descriptors, and go.  It’s very fast and loose, but it’s fun for pickup and play.

  4. Rob Donoghue Nice. Problem is having less than 2 for any particular — then you can’t do better than a 6-, which …yeah. Problematic. Maybe do as the bonus dice, with one being a negative? Use a different color and that might be easy.

  5. So, my lazy baseline assumes you are always rolling 2 dice, and the extra dice are bonuses on top of that.  That said, this assumes a very high level of competence (like, movie action hero stuff) or a system that depends on spending dice for effects (which I’m still fiddling with)

    But, yeah, the necessity of the second die bites my ass sometimes, since it would be very interesting to be able to occasionally let people roll 1 die (with a 6 being a 7-9)

    Though now that I say it, I suppose that could just be the “unskilled” rule. Hmm.

  6. a 16% chance of a 7-9, and a 5/6th chance of a 6- would be … I think players would avoid going to it ever. It is too harsh a penalty.

    That being said, having something you are bad at — a disadvantage die — is pretty awesome. Maybe that could be done with simply no bonus dice, though i think the chances are still in your interests there.

  7. Would this be awesome?

    1. Assign bonus dice.

    2. All rolls are by default 2d6

    3. If you want a bonus for a particular roll, pickup one of your bonus dice.

    4. To generate extra advantage dice, you can take a disadvantage dice. Assign the stat it goes to when you get it.

    That keeps it 2-12 at all times, gives a little resource management, and lets the player decide when to take a chance.

    Is this horrible or wonderful? I can’t tell.

  8. Wonderful.  That actually comes very close to a thought I had (stealing from an obscure supers game called “above the earth) where instead of any character sheet, I just gave you a pool of extra dice, and you apply them as you like (in the manner you describe), but use them up as you do so.   Only thing I’d add is a more robust means of regaining dice (possibly as bribes from the GM for certain choices).

    I’d want to tune it a little further for specific genres, but it’s a really solid startign point. 

  9. You mention there specifically having no moves as such and only having rolls trigger off of “can I do this”

    What about making it two triggers?

    “Can I do this?” from the player side, and “What do you do?” from the GM.

    Or taking pbta a step further, the players always roll, but the GM always decides what/when to roll?

  10. Totally may do something like that, but I’m just putting a pin in the moves until the rest of it is tuned. Moves are powerful enough tech that I want to do them thoughtfully, but I can also do them at the end of the process (especially when talking about tuning the game to specific genres)

  11. Nice! The “pin it to cliches” starts sounding like aspects, starts sounding like Fate. There’s a fairly important divide between “make up your own stats” and “these are your 6 stats” which has some important design decisions. Obviously, having stats and playbooks makes it easier to get into initially — “I’m a Barbarian. Like Conan. Cool”, while coming up with cooler descriptions and making sure the PCs are all in the same genre is harder work at game time.

    Not that one is better or worse, but I think the predefined makes for an easier time than openended.

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