Classic Dungeons and Dragons and Old School Gaming

D&D etc.

"Heir to a crumbling summit: to a sea of nettles: to an empire of rust: to rituals' footprints ankle-deep in stone."

-Mervyn Peake

"...and that, my liege, is how we know the Earth to be banana shaped."

-Sir Bedevere in Monty Python and the Holy Grail

Monday, November 7, 2011

Lamentations of the Flame Princess Language Variant

I really like LotFP's rules on languages.  I tend to run smaller groups when I play though, and I feel like the rules as written are meant for or work much better with larger groups.  In a larger group, you are sure to have a specialist and/or a wizard or two, and odds are somebody is going to roll a 1.  In a small group though, the by the book rules can cut down on your number of social encounters, so I've come up with the following variant.  The purpose of these rules (both this variant and the rules as written, as I see it) is to randomly give a different PC the spotlight when new creatures are encountered.  This variant just increases the chance if not guarantees that someone will be able to speak to an NPC or monster.

(because I like it when the players can talk to the mud people/giant spiders/pirates from the blood sea)


 When making language rolls, every player rolls a D6.  With normal languages the low rolling PC understands the language with the number rolled being an indication of how well they speak and understand the language.  The lower the better.  Example: three PCs encounter a swamp troll who is trying to tell them that the cave to the north has a group of harpies living in it.  They roll 3, 3, and 5.  The two who rolled 3 can both understand the swamp troll, but not very well.  Maybe they get that he's warning them about the cave, but they don't understand the word for harpy.  Characters who have an INT modifier or specialists with ranks in Languages can roll an additional die for each pip or plus, and take the lowest.  Stranger languages, or languages of creatures from other planes may require two or more low rolls and a maximum roll of say, one or two.

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