THE MASTER SERIES
by Peter Brink
This rules set assumes ownership of GURPS Basic Set published by Steve Jackson Games and HarnMaster 3 published by Columbia Games.
The purpose of this rules set is to improve the rules of HarnMaster so that they become coherent and above all playable. This is done by replacing the percentile skill resolution system of HarnMaster with a Task Resolution system, the character generation system and the magic system will also need to be replaced or altered.
The rules are based on a 3d6 Task Resolution engine. The Task Level is a modification to the Skill Level which together with possible additional modifications gives a Target Number, success is measured by comparing the Task Resolution Roll to the Target Number, the difference divided by four and rounded to the closest whole integer gives the Result Pool. When two entities compete the sum of their Result Pools are compared, the winner is the one with the largets Pool. A roll of 18 is always a failure and a roll of 3 is always a success.
Skills are graded on a scale ranging from 1 to 20+. Attributes are also graded from 1 to 20+. Both skills and attributes can, by themself or togheter be the base value for the Task Level.
A humanoid character is assumed to have a value of 10 in all his attributes, only those attributes which have above or below normal values need be noted on the character sheet. There are plenty of possible attributes, among others: Agility, Constitution, Dexterity, Intelligence, Power, Strength and Will. The system uses the maxim that experience and knowledge is always able to defeat raw talent, a strong character will usually be defeated in arms wrestling by a weaker but more experienced wrestler.
There are also plenty of skills, grouped in broad categories, such as: Communication, Crafts, Lores and Physical. Each skill is rated for it’s complexity, which ranges from 0 to 5, this rating is used to find out the base chance of a skill. All skills are opened at 8 - complexity. Some skills are Group Skills, these skills have subskills which governs specific usages of a skill, Group Skills can either be developed at the root level or at the branch level.
Character creation is done by a point based character design system, the player chooses among a large set of traits which gives the character various abilities and skills. All characters are thus in theory equally well equiped with cons and pros.
Combat is resolved using the Task Resolution system the same way all other conflicts in the game are solved. For each point an attacker has left in his Result Pool he rolls one die and adds the impact rating of his weapon to the result. The defenders armour rating is deducted from this sum and any remaining points is the damage done to the defender. The amount of damage is checked against a table and the type of would is recorded. There are four types of wounds: Light, Serious, Grevious and Deadly. Deadly wounds cannot be healed by normal means only magic or miracles can save the life of someone suffering a deadly wound.
Wounds take time to heal, it’s quite possible to die from the suits of a battle, infections may kill the most noble warrior.
Spells and magic is resolved in the same way as all other skills, the spell is a Task and the relative level of success governs the effects a spell have. The system is designed to be used with any kind of “magic system”, wheter the spells need special indegriences or other props or not.