LBB 9 ADVENTURER ! Traveller, Original D&D and What if.

Yes, the long avoided, over emphasised, self-indulgent classically derived* equipment lists for adventurer !

Below is the rule text. The link above includes the actual equiptment list which doesn't fit here and is formatted to boot.

read, enjoy, comment.

* as in, not medieval.Campaign Economics

Money and Equipment
Even a short perusal of the actual historical literature on item costs will show that it is extremely hard to know what items cost in ancient societies, let alone what their value was. Also, one finds a plethora of coinage systems, differing from realm to realm, and often city to city. In order to make such a mess somewhat playable, much has been abstracted, and some has been invented.
That said, I tried to keep a few constants in setting prices. First is that ratios were more informative than any statement of coinage value, especially given that it is not always able to clear about what coinage is referred to. The second is that what items are available is sharply defined by social class as much as location. In general, each of the main social classes had their own level of currency, with some overlap, and luckily enough they correspond somewhat to the types of money used.
Finally, I decided to adopt a standard similar to that of Augustan Rome, both for flavor reasons and documentation, which was a mix of official documents and private documents (often graffiti), which provides both a theoretical/official viewpoint of what things should cost, and what things cost to the actual consumers.

In adventurer, it is assumed that while all realms and many cities have their own coinage, that basic market forces will allow us to define a common set of coins which can be spent to buy stuff. For Adventurer, there are four basic coin types: Copper, Bronze, Silver and Gold.
The poor and the peasant tend to use copper, the laborers and common workers bronze; merchants and professionals silver, and the wealthy and the governments, Gold. For flavor reasons I’ve named them as follows

Copper Aes,
Bronze Sesterces,
Silver Denarius, and
Gold Solidus.

Their relative values are as follows:

1 Solidus = 25 Denarii =100 Setercii, = 400 As.

Partial and multiple value coins of all the denominations exist, especially at the lower end of the scale. To give some context, an As is about the price of a 1lb loaf of bread, a sesterces is a half days pay for the lowest paid workers, or a sit down common meal, 1 Denarius is a days pay for a semi-skilled laborer or low grade soldier, 2-4 denarius is a days wage for skilled worker (stonemason, carpenter) or skilled soldier (Legionary); a Solidus is a good draft animal such as an Ox, or an acre of unremarkable farmland.
Items are assigned to lists based on coinage type more than function; thus, some have a fairly large value in one list, and this indicates that while they could be bought with a higher grade currency, that they are more appropriate to the social class that uses that list. Conversely, they are less likely to be used by other social classes that use other lists. This mainly works in the upward direction: a peasant is unlikely to want (or need) to buy armor (generally on the Solidii list), whereas a rich man may well buy a 1lb loaf of bread; the difference is that the rich man can also buy 1lb of stuffed hummingbirds for lots more than 1 As if he wants.

Given the above concepts, a limitation on availability is how many of the given social class exist in a given city, and access to sufficient coinage of the proper type. . In general, an entire list will be available or not, largely for simplicity. The simplest determination is to look at the lower of wealth or population rating on the below table. Any given city has that list and all lower.
Item List Minimum
As 1
Sestercii 3
Denarii : 5
Solidii 7

Generally a list can be assumed to be available for barter at one level lower. (Denarii items can be traded for at a city with a population or wealth rating of 4.

One could add a list of modifiers for location and situation, but as this is a game of heroic adventure, not ripping accountancy that is left to the GM to decide.

For those who are interested, I'm posting the Beta 2.0 verion of Adventurer over this week, and an omnibus edition sometime next. If you enjoyed the first Beta or earlier, check it out. The first four parts are up now.
(and feel free to comment, naturally !)

1. Characters and Kit

2. Sorcerors and Spells

3. flashing blades and
fearsome creatures:

4 Perilous Inhabitants

EDIT: fixed links......

This is amazing. I may never use it, but I certainly appreciate the work that went into it.

But there is certainly a place for it in some campaigns. Andre Norton mixed magic and high tech in many of her books, with some quite creepy results.
srogerscat said:

This is amazing. I may never use it, but I certainly appreciate the work that went into it.

But there is certainly a place for it in some campaigns. Andre Norton mixed magic and high tech in many of her books, with some quite creepy results.

Thank you !
Rikki Tikki Traveller said:
Captain, I was only able to get the link to Part 1 to work.

Anyone else have trouble linking to the other files?

I think I've fixed the local links. try now......
Two more files for Adventurer (a traveller/FRPG S&S mashup)
Okay, I've got an unfinished first pass at the dungeon sections (the ever popular UDP universal dungeon profile) including all the basics (size, type, who lives there, how they keep it safe) as well as their treasure horde determination.

Also, this inspired me to a first pass on writing magic item and creation rules.

The latter in particular is a first pass -I'd really appreciate some comments or critique this time; I know we're all busy, but hey, this is free, and can only be improved by help.

New files:
Magic Items:
Towers and Terrors:
I've been following this thread with interest and downloading the files, thanks for the work and offering it up.

I'm concerned about keeping the files up to date. Are you planning on eventually putting out a "final product" when you get there?
AKAmra said:
I've been following this thread with interest and downloading the files, thanks for the work and offering it up.

I'm concerned about keeping the files up to date. Are you planning on eventually putting out a "final product" when you get there?

Thanks, and you are most welcome !

And, yes, absolutely. Its close to there, but not quite. Since I'm revising it bit by bit at this point, it seemed that sections were the best way to get it revised but avoid forcing a huge download to (say) get some updated tables.

Along those lines, feel free to add any comments, particularly if you think there's something you might want to see, or you think doesn't work. But do it soonish ! I'm probably stepping on to other stuff for a while once this hits Beta 2.0 complete.
Yes, Adventurer, the traveller pastiche of D&D is still progressing. Its been undergoing playtesting and a serious reedit and reorganization which I'm now adding to the main ms -which will eventually be available for download.

For now,I'd appreciate comments on once particular change I've decided on: modifiers for characteristics. They are very genre appropriate, but often come to dominate chargen and task resolution. Specifically, Traveller, (and I) seem to be predicated on the concept that while your basic makeup is important, what one learns is more important. The classic example is this: would you rather have heart surgery by another character with average stats and Medical -1, or an unskilled character with a +4 dex modifier (assuming Dex is what should be used, substitute whatever works for you) ? How about an average character with Medic 4 vs the high dexterity medic 0 ? Both have the exact same chance of success, but should they ? In other words, a high Stat modifier allows a character access to lots more skills by balancing out the unskilled penalty.

Yet, genre conventions of Swords and Sorcery are full of the characters superior makeup (mighty thews, catlike grace, pantherish speed and all that ) being of notable importance. So, here's how I'm hoping to address it in adventurer.

 Traveller (and by extension Adventurer) is based on the premise that what a character knows and learns is more important than what abilities they were born with. While it is important not to let the characteristics become more important than the skills, the genre is full of examples where a protagonists raw makeup, be it strength, endurance or intelligence, makes the difference, particularly in a contest of equals.   Accordingly, extreme scores provide a modifier to unskilled task attempt (discussed in the section on skills).

   Stat      Mod
    0-2       -2
    3-4       -1
    5-9        0
    10-11     +1
    12+       +2

    For opposed skilled task rolls, the characteristic effects the contest by providing a +1 to the character with the highest relevant characteristic.


    For simple unopposed tasks rolls, no characteristic modifier should be used. It is assumed that the characters native trait is included in the skill level.

Hows that sound ?
An interesting solution to stats overwhelming the system, which I agree is a potential problem.

Stat mods: I think the new stat mods are an improvement. I was considering the following for my Traveller games:
Stat 0-2 Mod -2
Stat 3-5 Mod -1
Stat 6-9 Mod +0
Stat 10-14 Mod+1
Stat 15+ Mod +2

Unskilled task rolls: The stat mods being applied to unskilled task rolls is good.

Opposed skilled task rolls: Makes sense.

Skilled task rolls: I think the rule works, but it's the one most likely to make players balk. The PC with the better stat mod is going to feel he/she should end with a higher skill level given the same training as someone with a lower stat mod.

I won't argue against your solution, but I think I would use my stat mod table and let the PC add their stat mod to skilled task rolls and opposed task rolls. My skill mods are more draconian; but, other than the new stat mods, it's RAW and doesn't introduce the new idea of adding a set +1 to the PC with the higher stat.

I'm looking forward to the final product.
Stat modifiers differentiate characters with identical skills. Without directly specialized knowledge/experience - the -3 DM is offset by innate skill, but usually only at most to level 0.

In MgT, level 0 represents mostly having knowledge, whereas higher levels differentiate more experience (with knowledge as well). So a surgeon who has the basic knowledge and better dexterity, say, might be a better choice for a routine surgery than one who has lots of experience, but not so physically talented.

A rule mechanic 'fix' being that some tasks should require higher skill levels (experience) or suffer penalties. (Actually closer to CT's special handling of certain tasks, though it lacked the flexibility of the modern system.) I handle this by slightly redefining MgT difficulty levels to not being fixed - i.e. what is difficult for Medic-0 might not be for a Medic-2 on a case by case basis. (Ex: tonsillectomy vs. brain surgery)

This offsets the huge stat advantages that can make for less believable odds. Though the 2d6 range is rather limited and changes a bit too linearly. 3d6 is better for this, as it has a higher range and is more (statistically) normal (i.e. extreme DMs have progressively lower impact past mid-point).

In real life, I'd rather have the innately talented doctor at times rather than the 20 year experienced one who is all thumbs and only average reasoning skills - with my preference being the former with said 20 years ;)
For the Opposed Check, how about using the DIFFERENCE between ability scores rather than a simple +1? Imagine the proverbial 90-lb weakling (STR = 4) against Charles Atlas (STR = 14) in an arm wrestling match...

A +1 doesn't make sense in this situation, but a +10 to Charles seems to high as well (although would a STR=4 person have a chance against Mr. Atlas?????)

I went back and forth over where to include the 5 and 9, and went with what I had becuase I'm a psychometrics geek, and I like the fact that 5 through 9 covers ~ 2/3 of the cases, which is a goodish approximation of an average sample of population. That said, I see that you've made it asymmetric, and weighted towards positive modifiers, ie, the players benefit. It never even occurred to me to not make it symmetric, due to my own dweebsiness, and I think I prefer your approach. I mean, its not like characters are a valid population sample (insanity and sociopathy being way to high if nothing else), and it gives players a bit more chance of having a modifier, without hosing the rolls much. Thanks !
it's the one most likely to make players balk.
I agree....roleplaying games would be so much easier to design if there just weren't players involved.... :wink:

Keep an eye on my blog, also.

I undertand your points, and probably would have been in line with them not too long ago -I also recognize that I have a minority opinion on what is a very basic issue for skill based games.
My "AhHa !" moment was this: I realized that while two characters could be doctors (Medic-3) the smarter one had an easier time of it, and possibly did it faster. They have the same level because they are equally as good. The clumsier character who trained as long as the one with natural talent would be a medic-2, not medic -3. At least that's how I'm going to sell it if I have too.

Oh yeah, plus I dislike level 0 skills as a concept.

I'm reminded of the scene in time bandits where little john is arm wrestling and literally tearing peoples arms off. Or perhaps in Superman II where the evil Kryptonian woman challenges a huge redneck to arm wrestle (talk about revenge of the nerds..).

I get your point, but that kind of disparity really shouldn't be rolled for; plus, you're at a disadvantage for not having seen my latest revision of all the rules - an arm wrestle isn't a skill based test, but would be a simple STR vs STR test, which involves rolling under the stat, but still as high as possible. Once skills come into play, its easier to see (say) a 90lb weaking beating Charles atlas in a brawl if the 90lb weakling is the classic little old man with a stick from kung fu movies - possessing Melee (fist) and Melee (stick) both at 5 .

Thanks ! Good stuff -its Golan's stuff, and he's a good bet for quality stuff. have you seen Mercator by Mithras ?
BenTOGS said:
So... When will we see the Traveller 3.5 Edition, or even better, Traveller Pathfinder? :shock: :shock: :D

When they pry Adventurer out of my cold, dead fingers....... :twisted:
captainjack23 said:
BenTOGS said:
So... When will we see the Traveller 3.5 Edition, or even better, Traveller Pathfinder? :shock: :shock: :D

When they pry Adventurer out of my cold, dead fingers....... :twisted:

I think yu're misquoting Gygax... He said Dungeons & Dragons.