Optional Rules: But it’s not in the Rulebook!

“But it’s not in the Rulebook!” some people might say when presented with a Fan Made rule. Don’t let that kind of talk stop you. If you have a great idea, use it anyway. You might be able to tweak an ability here, make an action occur more smoothly there, or simplify combat with “one simple trick.” I am in favor of optional rules and encourage you to make them for Unchained Heroes. Unchained Heroes spawned out of making so many optional rules for my favorite game systems that it made a lot more sense to make my own game. The “optional rules” ended up being built in as part of its...

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Turk Zapt’s 25 Metagaming Rules of RPG Combat

Combat is a considered a complex part of most games and has many rules to cover the different scenarios that might come up. Most of the time, we end up seeing people simply trading blows and it loses its luster. This is because a number of different factors; the biggest being that Auto-Attacks are easy. Beyond that there is a host of other metagaming factors that are occurring behind the scenes. If you understand what those are we can use them to get us away from monotonous combat and make it more exciting. The first step in making combat more exciting is understanding the more nuanced...

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Using the Dynamic Battlefield

We don’t have a square grid or a hex grid setup as is found in many traditional RPGs. Unchained Heroes uses the Battle Zones and Battlefields instead. We call it the Dynamic Battlefield, mostly because we want people to start thinking about the Battlefield as something more than just a place you stand across from your foes. It is a lot more than that, a proper battlefield has a personality of its own and makes combat exciting. Let’s look at this very simple scenario where you and a mortal enemy of yours are finally ready to throw down in the middle of the street. Scene without Dynamic...

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Identify, React, Adapt: How Brinedeep Thrived

The Wisdom of Adaptation It’s said that no plan ever survives first contact with the enemy. This phrase is true in GMing, although instead of “enemy” I would change this to “gaming group”. I felt that I had GM’ed my way into a corner of sorts, and was having trouble coming up with interesting storylines that progressed the plot to where I could reveal THE BIG THING. At first I thought perhaps a time skip would solve the problem – maybe level the group up and advance the plot this way. Then I thought I would hand the GM reins over to Kurt for awhile. But this felt like I was abandoning...

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Item Level: It’s not just a Statistic

Our first few weeks are past and it has been a good run. I am sure all of you are starting to have some questions about various aspects of Unchained Heroes and I wanted to point out an overlooked mechanic of the game that has the potential to add a lot of flavor to your game play. The concept of Item Levels distributes all Weapons, Armor, and Magical Items on a scale of 0 to 15 and gives you a bonus to various stats based on that value. Anything of Item Level 0 is considered the run-of-the-mill, common equipment you find in the world, but anything of Item level 1 or higher builds into...

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Creating an Adventure: Part 2

This is the last part of the Creating an Adventure Series. You can find the first part through this link: Creating an Adventure – Part 1. This part wraps up the adventure creation process and should give you a framework to use for your own adventure creation in the future. When this article is complete, we will have two versions of this Adventure Module for you. The first one will be a more basic Outline version of the Adventure and available immediately. Download the Adventure Prison Break on our Downloads Page. The second will be a more detailed Adventure with more flavor and...

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