Monday, September 5, 2011

Quick Start Characters are for Suckers

The Quick Start rules in HackMaster Basic allow you to create characters very quickly (10-15 minutes), but the characters made just don't compare to scratch built characters using the full rules. Why? Simple, they don't spend all of their available build points- in most cases, not even close to all their build points. Here's the breakdown-

Everyone starts out with 50bp. QS pc's all get a 50bp bonus for leaving their stats as rolled. 100bp total now. QS pc's are all human so every class costs 25 bp. So 75bp total. Every pc gets +2 stat points which costs 40bp. 35bp total.

Ok, so every QS pc at this point has 35bp to spend. This is where they diverge.

The Fighter spends 5bp on weapon proficiencies, 7bp (maximum) on 2 random skills, and 20bp for level one specialization in longsword. This only leaves him with 3bp left over. That's pretty fair.

The real problem is with the other classes.

The Cleric (True) spends 2bp on weapon proficiencies and 0bp on skills (all his skills are free). This leaves him with a whopping 33bp left over.

The Thief spends 4bp on weapon proficiencies and 6bp (maximum) on 2 random skills. This leaves him with 25bp left over.

The Mage spends 2bp on weapon proficiencies and 9bp (maximum) on 2 random skills. This leaves him with 24bp left over.

So you can see that every QS class other than the Fighter gets shafted. How do we fix this? The main thing that separates the Fighter from the other classes in efficiency is his specialization. This is kind of an advanced concept in my opinion and would be best if left out of QS pc generation. That would bring the Fighter back more into line with the other classes and leave him with 23bp left over.

Now to spend those left over points in the easiest, most effective way. Simply give each pc an extra point to add to any stat (worth an extra 20bp). Plus I'd give every pc a bonus skill- pick either literacy or observation for free (both skills that everyone can find useful and are fairly expensive). That should bring Quick Start characters to a more even footing with their made the hard way brethren.