Sunday, February 20, 2011

Cal & D: 2nd Edition

Yesterday's game of Cal & D brought many of the same experiences as our first session: beer drinking; discussions of music, movies, and books; and acting like 12 year-olds.  Oh, yeah, and we actually gamed, too.

Session 2 of our adventure through the Mud Sorcerer's Tomb also coincided with a new edition of the game, Cal & D: 2nd Edition.  Although you may think that "2E" meant that we were all of a sudden overwhelmed with three hundred campaign settings and Steve's and my characters were replaced because gnomes were no longer part of the core rules, you'd be wrong.  The evolution of the rules in this case meant a couple of things:

1) The players actually rolled dice this time.  I'm really not one of those types of gamers who feel like you're not playing if you don't open your dice bag, but a lot of people do feel that way.  It was decided that it would be more "true" RPG experience if the players rolled some dice.  Our die rolls yesterday consisted of the basic ones you'd think: attack rolls, damage rolls, saving throws, and some miscellaneous skill checks.  None of us are really certain what skills our characters have, but that's part of the beauty of system.  We just describe what we're trying to do, and then we roll a D20, to which the DM adds a modifier based on our description and also how likely it is that our character might be good at that particular action.

2) We also experienced "exploding dice", ala Savage Worlds.  (I also understand a similar system was used in Rolemaster, but I can't quite be sure, having never played that system).  Basically, if you roll the highest number possible on a given die, then you get to roll again and add the result.  So, if you roll a d8 for damage and are lucky enough to roll an "8", then you roll again.  Sadly, I don't think any of us actually did this yesterday.  Our die rolls mostly consisted of getting either a "4" or a "7" on a d20.  This happened to my friend Steve about 3,826 times. 

3) Do not touch Wil's dice bag.  I'm pretty sure this is now codified in the 2nd Edition rulebook.

4) If you drop someone in combat and do not immediately follow with a clever pun, then you didn't actually drop your opponent.  I'm not entirely sure if this is a universal rule, or one that was just directed at my character, Glinbiddle Hodgemalkin, gnome paladin of Garl Glittergold.  I'm patterned off of the Travelocity Gnome, and make comments throughout the game about not needing to worry about the potentially bad consequences of exploring scary areas of the dungeon, because our trip is "guaranteed" and all I need to do is make a quick call to get Clan Travelocity to help us make things right.  Yesterday I succeeded in tripping an annis hag with my gnomish hook hammer (because, really, what other weapon would I be using?), but failed to follow my awesome attack with the requisite "Have a nice trip!" pun.  I was even challenged by the group, who helpfully shouted a countdown directly in my face ("FIVE!  FOUR!  THREE!...") and I was laughing so hard I couldn't come up with the most simple of puns.  So, the annis hag, it turned out, immediately got back on her feet and attacked me.

Those are the major rules differences in Cal & D: 2E.  We were happy with the changes, for the most part, although I'm sure a schism will start and whole message boards will be founded on the basis of wanting to hold true to the essence of "OC&D" and going into why C&D: 2E is "teh suck." 

Personally, I'm waiting for the Cal & D Rules Cycalpedia.

And, you can bet that I'll be practicing my puns in anticipation of our third session.


  1. The pun thing is a double-sided gnomish hook hammer, indeed. I had a Living Arcanis Enchanter that continually made pad puns. And sure enough one of my GMs did basically what yours did - I was casting a Tasha's Hideous Laughter and I had to tell a joke... to a Six-Headed Hydra. (he said normally the spell should just fizzle but he wanted to give me a chance).

    Nothing came, and he counted down, then I came up with the lamest joke possible: A Hydra walks into a bar... ouch... ouch... ouch... ouch... ouch... ouch... .

    Yeah, he almost made all 6 heads attack at once with an attack of opportunity. :(

    Sometimes it doesn't pay to be clever. ;)

    Alex Pope

  2. You know - the thing is... in our game, your joke would've been totally appropriate and I'm pretty sure would've made sure that the annis hag stayed tripped. I chuckled a little out loud when I read your joke.

    I liked your comment on Wil's blog about how Wil has a "+2 Blogging Keyboard." :)


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