The Meaning of Higher Levels

Alex wrote an excellent blog post about levels in ACKS and what they mean/where they sit in the distribution of power.  You can read it and it’s copious examples here.

Done?  Good.  Now, it’s fits brilliantly with ACKS and B/X assuming a world in which 14 is the absolute limit.

But what if it isn’t?

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I’ve always loved psionics.  Yes, they were a terrible mess.  Yes, we almost never used the psionic combat matrix back in 1E.  Yes, the psionics in 2E were also a mess and left characters that were either terribly weak or terribly powerful, depending on the kind of game you ran… but there was still something about them that made them ‘shine’.

Maybe it was the idea of a power outside of your leveling arc that appealed, or the Dark Sun idea of everyone with strange powers that really lit my adolescent mind on fire.  I don’t know.  When I ran my campaign world, I integrated psionics into it, had a powerful NPC psionic end up marrying one of the main PCs and bearing his child (an even more powerful psionic).  The NPC in turn, as a kind gesture, performed psychic surgery on another PC and awoke a truly potent Wild Talent… who later killed her husband in part with the powers he gave her.

Yeah, it got nuts.

So, finding a psionic system (that works) is a big deal for me.  I want to add psionics to ACKS but it has to meet several criteria.

One, mostly balanced.

Two, wild talents (systems that only create a psychic class don’t fill the role for me).

Three, psionic class (systems that lack a purely dedicated psionic don’t work either).

Four, psionic combat that works with the rest of the system.

Yeah…not easy.

However, I’ve been looking at some options.  If you have any suggestions, I’d love to hear them!

[House Rules-Monster]Shadow Savant

I have always had a soft spot in my heart for the Dark Savants in Talislanta.    In the first edition book, there were almost no details about them making them even more mysterious.  There was very little about them except these cool pics:

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House Rules-Sundered Empires Part 3

Dual Classing

This particular set of house rules (untested yet) will undoubtedly be controversial.  I know a lot of people in the advanced circles have strong feelings about dual-classing, and it doesn’t even exist in B/X.  But it existed (and made a huge campaign impact) in my first campaign, so its important to me that players have this as an option.

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House Rules-Sundered Empires Part 2

I knew when I started the House Rules post that the house rule would be something like a living document with periodic updates.  Well here are a few I forgot/just came up with!

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Level Limits

I’ve never met a player of old school games that did not have an opinion on Level Limits.  Some people love them.  Others, such as myself, hate them.  Very few people are apathetic towards them.

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House Rules-Sundered Empires Part 1

Everyone has their own house rules.  Everyone tweaks and modifies games to suit their own interests.  Here are mine (well, most of them…and mostly the ones I can think of right now).

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