The Landshut Rules: Arnesonian rpg rules



Download these rules as a handy pdf: The Landshut Rules v2


Ready-to-play hacks:


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Some of you know of my brave forays into the primeval ages of roleplaying. As a result of these beautiful journeys, I finally formulated our homebrew rules. I called them Arnesonian rules because that's what they are, effectively.

Still, I feel they deserve at least some kind of reference, a name that tells others where they originated from. So, I decided to stay traditional and name our rules after the place they come from: Landshut, the Lower Bavarian town I was born in. The Twin Cities had and still have their Twin Cities gamers and several variants of Twin City rules, and now Landshut has its Landshut rules, and I think it's fitting.

So, without further ado, I'd like to present to you



The Landshut Rules.

CHARACTER CREATION
  • Write down a few words about your character.  
  • Note one special power that allows you to do things others can't. Special powers are defined before play by the ref and the player. By design, this is open to interpretation. 
  • Your character has no stats, but you may write down "strong", "agile", "tough", "charming", "smart" or "wise". If this helps you in a situation, add +1 to the roll. 
  • Your character can get hit/injured a certain number of times; the exact number of hits is determined by the referee. In combat, if the winning result is really high (again, the referee has the final say in this), or your actions leading to this situation were stupid enough, it is entirely possible that your character is severely injured or even dies. (Note for referees: a good number is four hits: after the first hit, you're stunned, after the second, lightly injured, after the third, severely injured, after the fourth, mortally wounded. Armor gives the character a number of "free hits" – think damage sponge – before they start getting hurt).
  • In mass combat, you count as four men.
  • If you're playing a published rpg setting: 
    • roll attributes. Write down only extremely low and extremely high stats. 
    • pick 5 or 10 skills from the rulebook (if the game uses skills)
    • pick 2d6 pieces of regular equipment/gear from the book, then lose 1d6 of them
    • pick 2 "Powers": special equipment, spells, special abilities, connections, special backgrounds etc.

BASIC ROLLS 



  • When the ref calls for it, roll 2d6: 
    • High = good (10+)
    • Middling = does not change the situation, or negotiated/mixed results (fleeting success, success with a downside, failure with an upside) 
    • Low = bad (5-)
  • The ref can also roll his 2d6 against the player's. Higher result wins and gets to say what happens.
  • You can also use a d20 instead of two regular six-sided dice. If a character has an advantage of any kind, the player may either roll 2d20 and pick the higher result, or add +5 to his 1d20 roll. For disadvantage, roll 2d20 and pick the worse result, or subtract 5 from a 1d20 roll.

ONE-ON-ONE COMBAT 


  • You roll 2d6, I roll 2d6. Who rolled higher determines what happens. If we're close, we negotiate. 
  • Winning with a high number (ref determines what that means) means a really good and/or severe hit.
  • Shields grant a character 1 free hit before they can get injured, light armor also 1 free hit, medium armor 2 free hits, heavy armor 3 hits. So a player character wearing leather armor (=light armor) can get hit once without major consequences, after that, he can usually take 4 hits before he dies.

MASS COMBAT 


  • Melee is simultaneous. Only the first row of combatants can attack, except for polearm/spear attacks from the second row.
  • Each figure may move up to one length of a pen in normal terrain. Difficult terrain halves movement. Very difficult terrain allows movement of up to 1/4 of a pen. Fast or slow combatants move farther or shorter than one pen -- come up with your own rulings here.
  • First, Missles are fired, second, spells are started, third, combatants move, fourth, spells started in step 1 now take effect; fifth, archers who didnʻt move and havenʻt been engaged in melee may fire again, sixth, Melee
  • Using light weapons: roll 1d6 for every 3 men 
  • Using medium weapons: roll 1d6 for every 2 men 
  • Using heavy weapons: roll 1d6 for every man 
  • Using superheavy weapons, or mounted: roll 2d6 for every man. 
  • Attacking heavily armored opponents: 6 is a kill 
  • Attacking opponents in medium armor: 5, 6 kills 
  • Attacking opponents in light or no armor: 4,5,6 kills 
  • 1 hit kills a normal being. Monsters and npcs can take a number of hits depending on how many humans they're equivalent to. E.g. A bear that's as powerful as 4 humans can take 4 hits. 
  • Hirelings die first; player characters only start taking damage after their hirelings have died.
  • Check morale with 1d6 when a unit has lost 3+ figures, when a unit has lost more than half of its members, when a unit is attacked from behind or in the flank, or when friendly units are routing nearby.
  • If the unit rolls higher than the its morale number, it is routed and immediately turns in the opposite direction and moves as far back as it can. It will continue to do so till it reaches the end of the playing field; at that moment, itʻs considered defeated.
  • Morale numbers: under fire
    • Civilians: 3, Soldiers: 4, Veterans/Elite Soldiers: 5, Heroes: 6
  • Morale numbers: routing/other
    • Civilians: 2, Soldiers: 3, Veterans: 4, Elite Soldiers: 5, Heroes: 
  • A leader might be able to rally fleeing troops; roll 1d6 and stay at or under the leaderʻs Leadership Skill (1=uninspired, 2=typical, 3=talented, 4=superb, 5=tactical genius).
  • Modifiers to Morale: 
    • Attacked in flank -1
    • Attacked from behind -2
    • Leader close by +1
    • Double ranks (formation wider than deeper) +1
    • Triple ranks (formation wider than deeper) +2
    • Lost half or more figures in unit -2
    • Witnessed the loss if their leader in this turn -2
    • Lost a general -3


optional:

Variable damage 1: an optional rule for Landshut gaming 

Are there rules for variable damage? Or do you guys handwave it? Truth be told, yes, we handwave this. But there’s also a simple add-on to solve this:

If you hit, determine the damage you inflict:
unarmed - roll 2d4 and pick the lower result.
lightly armed - roll 2d4 and pick the higher result.
heavily armed- roll 2d6 and pick the higher result.
extremely heavily armed - roll 2d8 and pick the higher result.

Fragile characters start out with 4 hits. Resilient characters start with 6 or even more. Armor absorbs between 1 and 3 damage. If damage leaves you with below zero hits, roll above average to avoid critical damage. If you end up with less than minus 3 hits, you're dead-dead.

optional:

Variable damage 2: 

A player character has 10 hits. 
In combat, players roll 2d6 against each other, as usual.
Higher total hits, as usual. Results from 2 to 9 deal 1 point of damage, 10 does 2 pts, 11 does 3 pts, and 12 scores 4 points damage.

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