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Optional Rules


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Weapon luck: Some Players have commented on how Fantasia leads to power gaming, particularly with super-skilled Characters. Well, actually, it's designed to do just that, because Fantasia is more about heroes, and traditionally in myths, medieval heroes are more or less superheroes for their world. Still, everyone being the greatest swordsman in the world gets a bit dull, and takes away from such a concept being special at all. There are of course ways to encourage others to be Skilled in other weapons, such as providing more (and more appealing) exotic weapons that are not swords. Or, with this rule, one may find he's just naturally lucky with some sort of weapon: Devise a rolling chart for all the weapons, so one's 'lucky weapon' is random, with greater rolling ranges for less often used but still decent damage dealing weapons. Whatever weapon one is lucky with he can have either a bonus of +1 to his rolls on Table 14 or 15 with it, or be able to get Critical Hits with a '19' as well as a '20' (in the case of magical weapons one is lucky with, this factor goes down by 1 to compensate, so if he has a weapon +4 he's lucky with, he'd get Critical Hits on a natural '16' or higher).

Translation Experience: It seems like a lot of trouble to translate ancient writing, runes and other Handouts. Now, these acts are meant to be part of the role-playing experience, and even if a Player doesn't want to role-play that much he can still easily bypass them if he has his Character learn Languages. But, still, why waste the Handouts? At the GM's option, a Player will receive 10 Experience Points for each line he translates on any given Handout.

Wounds. Rather than simply have all wounds accounted for with a single penalty, regardless of the degree of the blow or multiple blows, the question may arise as to "How bad is it?" At the Player's option, he can roll his Damage Variable Dice whenever he is hit with a new wound, to determine what his Fatigue factor will be from that point on (indeed until wounded again, or until the Character is fully healed when it disappears). This way, Fatigue can rise or fall, accounting for such things as adrenaline, compounding wounds, blood loss and sheer determination among others. If the roll is '1', the Character's Fatigue penalty becomes -4. A roll of '2-3' means -3. '4-5' means -2. '6-7' means -1. A roll of '8' means no Fatigue at all.

Damage Variable. Instead of the minimum Damage done always being simply '1', the GM can choose for Protection to stop only Base Damage, and thus the Damage Variable will always be suffered. It is important to remember that this works both ways, and so while the Player Characters may suffer more Damage, they will have an easier time smashing and slashing through their foes.

Fear. This modified rule is included in newer prints of the Core Rules, but those people who posses earlier prints may use the existing Fear Check rules, or this errata. At the beginning of any battle against non-human creatures, all Player Characters and NPCs must make a ‘Fear Check’, to see if they are brave enough to face their foes. Each creature in the Master’s Book has a fear factor. If multiple creatures face the party, the highest Fear factor must be rolled against—the others are insignificant. A Fear Check (which does not take a Turn) is made by rolling the D20, aided by +2 for every Experience Level of the party’s leader (if they have one), and +4 if the Character is learned in the lore of that type of creature (no Skill Check is necessary). If a Fear Check fails, many different things can happen, depending on the situation. If a terrified Character has a higher Movement Rate than the creature he fears, he will flee before battle begins (no roll necessary). He will run away 10’ multiplied by the difference of what he totaled for his Fear Check and what was required—if he rolls a natural ‘1’, he will not stop running until forced to. If such flight is made indoors, the GM should roll with as high a dice as necessary to count the numbers of all Encounters, and the result will be the Encounter the fleeing one runs toward, whether he has been there or not, pushing through whatever may lie in his path (if at all possible). If a frightened Character cannot outrun the enemy he fears, he will stand transfixed, paralyzed, or simply crumble to his knees in terror. He will be able to re-attempt his Fear Check each time an enemy is slain (by others). But while in this state, he cannot defend himself—should any enemy attack him, it needs no roll to strike him. In either event, one can attempt their Fear Check anew at the beginning of each Round.

Treasure power. Exotic treasures are not just 'better stuff'. To treat them as such is to belittle their true potential, not just statistically, but especially in the minds of the Characters, to whom such items not only give a decided advantage, but glory and a greater connection with the universe. At the GM's option alone, the more exotic treasures one has, the more it will effect him, as their power effects his being at a basic level. In this, each exotic item one carries, whether he wields it or not, will increase one Ability Score by +1 and lower another by -1. Accursed treasures raise Intuition but lower Strength. Dwarven crafts raise Endurance but lower Dexterity. Elven magics raise Charisma but lower Strength. Magic items raise Wisdom but lower Combat. Artifacts raise Courage but lower Charisma.

Racial weapons. Each of the Free Peoples of Fantasia has a favored weapon type, based upon their physical prowess, culture and other details. If the Game master agrees to use this rule, each race will gain a bonus of +1 to Attack Rolls using a general weapon type. Men are best served by the sword, for its balance, how its reach compensates for their lack of speed, and also that as it is the symbol of the Cross it is the weapon of Angels and so using it gives them strength. Elves make the best use of bows, as it is most effective in their hands, given their keen eyesight and steady limbs that allow for the best aim. Dwarves are most effective with axes and hammers, as they have such raw strength but also such limited reach. Halfmen are the most confident when using thrown objects, despite their small size, because it is the most common type of fighting they have learned in their peaceful society.

Duels. Oftentimes, a battle can come down to just a few PCs and NPCs whose Defense Scores are so high that they need natural '20's to hit each other, and so an endless dice battle begins, bouncing between Initiative and empty Attack Rolls, which gets boring quickly. Such a situation can be sped up if all combatants agree to the following rule (including the GM who controls the NPC creatures). In this manner, instead of rolling countless Attack Rolls that never hit, one must continue to do better with his Attack Rolls as the duel builds towards a climatic point, in that one's Attack Roll must equal or exceed the last Attack Roll made, whether it was his own or that of his opponent. If one's Attack total is less than the previous Attack Roll, then his enemy gets a free Turn, and indeed this can bounce back-and-forth, as a duel would. The wise choice, thus, is to parry, as one would in a duel, waiting for an opening, building his Attack bonus. Furthermore, when one parries in a duel, he does not gain just a +1, but rather he rolls D4 to determine how much of a bonus he gets, so an endless duel of parrying does not get created.

Boomerangs. These weapons were considered when the game was going through its final revisions, but I felt that they were far too rare to be put down in the rules, for anything in the rules is considered commonplace, or at least common enough, and the presence of boomerangs would create the false picture that every rogue has one. But, since you have come here to this hall, I believe I can give you a boomerang: it costs 4gp, has a 3 Encumbrance, and can be thrown up to DEX x 5'. If it hits a target, it will deliver a Base Damage of 0, and whether it hits or not, it will always return to the one who threw it.

Story Penalties. Fantasia is a game designed for more mature, more idealistic players, and is by no means a 'hack-&'slash' game. Still, players will play what they want, and after perverting a game system with "This is too stupid a rule" kind of modifications complain how the system as a whole doesn't work. This is where Story Points come back into play, indeed to reward good role-playing and allow the role-player to do what the rule-player cannot. Still, Story Points, like any rule, can and will be abused. So, what is the solution? Preferably, if one's Players are so fargone, choose a game that is suited more to their tastes. But if they insist on abusing Fantasia, then Story Points can be made to work both ways. At the GM's option alone, each action attempted by a Player that is clearly out of character, out of theme with the setting or adventure, or is simply done in bad taste merits one 'Penalty'. Now, Penalties can work two ways. The first is that, if Story Points are indeed used, each Penalty cancels out one earned Story Point when they are awarded, and if one's Penalties exceed his award, they carry over into his previously earned Story Points! The other way Penalties may be applied, indeed in a game where Story Points are not used, is that each Penalty immediately and irrevocably costs the Character a significant loss, rolled by the GM (1: one random Ability Point, 2: one Health Point, 3: one Skill Level of the Player's choice, 4: his highest Value exotic treasure, 5: his next 1-6 Turns, 6: the Player's ability to speak for the next 1-6 minutes or else he suffers this roll again, with the result of '6' being re-rolled).

Starting Acquisitions. When a new Character is created, in order to create a greater sense of realism or to prohibit abuse of rules (such as an all Dwarven party buying loads of Elven bread because 3gp is easy to come by), the GM may rule that while one can indeed purchase anything he can afford, he can only purchase those things that are available to the same Acquisition Dice covered by his History Roll, and if no such dice is specified, then Men use the D10, Halfmen and Dwarves the D20, and Elves the D30.

Swapping Ability Scores. As this is a classic part of role-playing games, inevitably some Players insist on doing this. If one wishes to, the best system we have found is that it requires the loss of two Points from one Ability Score to raise another, and that one cannot lower any single Ability Score more than once, nor lower or raise any Score below or above the lowest and highest that was originally rolled, reflecting the Character's inherent potential.

Choosing targets. While 'called shots' are not a part of the Fantasia game, it is still good strategy to select one's opponents in battle and concentrate one's attacks based on how effective they can be against particular targets. Battle-wise Players will do this naturally. However, if one does not specifically state which foe they are attacking in a given Round ("The one who had his armour broken", "The one that Regie hit last Round", etc.) then the GM should randomly determine which foe is struck every time someone lands a successful blow.

Fortune. Perhaps there is more than mere luck involved with extreme dice rolls, indeed, perhaps Fate has more of a hand in one's rolls than a Player imagines. Each individual Player (and the GM himself) may use this rule for their dice rolls, but it will not apply to those who wish it not. One can change their mind about the application of this rule only at the beginning or ending of an adventure, or at such Encounters where Story Points are normally awarded. Those who do use this rule will find that two consecutive Criticals in battle will be a sign of great fortune or great misfortune. This does not mean that one needs two Critical Hits or two Critical Misses in a row, only that if their next two rolls are Critical at all (hits or misses, or even spellcasting), then the second such roll will be either a blessing or a blight. Indeed, the second Critical rolled in succession will either 'bless' all those who use this rule (if it is a hit), or 'blight' all who use this rule (if it is a miss). For example, if one makes a Critical Miss, then his next is a Critical Hit, this would 'bless' all who use this rule, as per the Miracle. However, if the roll following his first Critical is a normal hit or miss, this re-sets this ratio. Furthermore, if one rolls three Critical Hits in a row, the blessing will remain until the next such point of choice as described above. Likewise, if one rolls three Critical Misses in a row, he will not only suffer a blight until such a time as described above (and can indeed at that time find a means to cleanse the blight), but that blight will have the added penalty of negating the positive effects of this rule for that particular Character (i.e. from rolling Critical Hits).

Backpacks. Considering the bulk of a backpack and the gear carried in it, one may argue that such a pack is effective armour. If your GM allows it, a backpack will indeed provide some Protection against Damage. In this ruling, a backpack provides 1 Protection, +1 more for every 10 Encumbrance specified to be carried in it (rounded down). Hence, a full backpack would provide 4 Protection! Note, however, that just as backpacks can fall, so can they be hit as well, and thus have their contents damaged. For if one is indeed hit in so far as a blow's Damage equals or exceeds his total Protection, then, as with being dropped, all of a backpack's fragile contents are destroyed. However, as the damage was suffered with valor, no dire consequences should be enforced (i.e. ink won't stain spellbooks but rather it will simply stain the ground and be lost).

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