[End Times] Health and Vitality in my system

Marmalade

Bottlecap Joe
Validated User
#1
Heya buds, hope everyone had a pleasent holiday season so far. I thought today Id do a quick post for feedback on my game End Times Health and Vitality system, see what people think.

Health: Health is pretty basic. You run out, youre unconsious, you take too much damage after that (an amount equal to your Brawn score, creative I know) you are dead. Health is relatively scarce in End Times, but you do gain a comparatively large amount at first level. For example, someone taking the Wildman class would gain 15 at level 1. However, health gains taper off in End Times. That same Wildman would gain 4 on levels 2-5, and after that, a mere 2 HP per level. You gain additional HP based on your Brawn Score, but you only gain this HP on levels 1-5, so that once you reach that point, each +1 to your vitality is only worth 5 HP. Though in End Times, that could very well be an extra hit!

HP is kept low to encourage tense, intentional gameplay in the vein of many OSR games.


Vitality: Vitality is a secondary Health statistic, and is an abstraction of your ability to tough out wounds, recover from battle, and your will to keep trucking in general. Vitality is not reduced when you take damage (save for some very special circumstances), rather it is a resource used to heal after a combat or suitably life threatening situation. After such a situation you are forced to spend you're level+1 Vitality to heal your HP at a 1 to 1 ratio. For example, Sonja, a level 5 character, can spend up to 6 Vitality to heal her HP after a fight. Vitality must be spent, its not optional (there a many reasons for this, but primarily its to cut down on players having lengthy round table discussions about how much healing the party has access to and how much Vitality to spend). However characters cannot spend more than they have and cannot heal over maximum.

Characters gain Vitality each level based on their class and gain additional Vitality based on their Presence Score. Most classes gain 2-3 Vitality per level, however you gain your bonus Vitality from Presence every level, without restriction. Vitality does not taper off like Health does, however it starts off smaller. Vitality has other uses but these are all dependent on unique abilities.

Vitality is designed to allow combat to be tense and lethal but to allow gameplay to continue without grinding to a halt after encounters, be they combat or non combat. Its not a lot of healing, but it typically supplements a party's other means of healing.


So, with all that said and done, comments, critiques, feedback? Thanks for your responses.
 

eeldip

Registered User
Validated User
#2
its pretty crunchy, but in terms of what i see as the design goals, i like the direction. make combat lethal, but avoid too much *resting* or other not so much fun ways to regain health that bog down play.

also like the power curve, in that its non linear and tapers off a bit, so that high level type characters aren't superhumanly immune to damage.

how much damage does the average weapon do on average? like 5 points? hard to tell.... (trying to figure out how many hits a character can take)
 

johnthedm7000

Social Justice Witch
Validated User
#3
How is Vitality recovered? What about Health? The answer will really determine how much play grinds to a stop after combat. Because speaking from experience, with dangerous combat people *will* take every possible extra precaution to regain HP to enhance their survivability even if it's not as fun as pressing on. Unless of course there's an inducement of some kind to continue on: either a benefit for characters who press on, or a threat to characters that means that choosing to rest to recover your reserves is a strategic decision.

I'll echo Eeldip's question as well: how well this works depends on how much damage weapons do on average. Designing Vitality to be a "buffer" is a fine line to walk, as if it's not significant enough it'll feel like needless busy-work, but if it's too impactful then it will minimize the need for characters to prepare healing magic, medkits, or the like. I look forward to hearing more about the system as things move forward.
 

Marmalade

Bottlecap Joe
Validated User
#4
its pretty crunchy, but in terms of what i see as the design goals, i like the direction. make combat lethal, but avoid too much *resting* or other not so much fun ways to regain health that bog down play.

also like the power curve, in that its non linear and tapers off a bit, so that high level type characters aren't superhumanly immune to damage.

how much damage does the average weapon do on average? like 5 points? hard to tell.... (trying to figure out how many hits a character can take)
The damage dice range from 1d4 to 1d8 typically, and adding anywhere from +1-+4 to those is the typical norm. There are many things that go against these rules. A flamethrower can hit for 2d8+4 pretty regularly for example. Multiple attacks can be made per turn but successive attacks are less effective.
 

Marmalade

Bottlecap Joe
Validated User
#5
How is Vitality recovered? What about Health? The answer will really determine how much play grinds to a stop after combat. Because speaking from experience, with dangerous combat people *will* take every possible extra precaution to regain HP to enhance their survivability even if it's not as fun as pressing on. Unless of course there's an inducement of some kind to continue on: either a benefit for characters who press on, or a threat to characters that means that choosing to rest to recover your reserves is a strategic decision.

I'll echo Eeldip's question as well: how well this works depends on how much damage weapons do on average. Designing Vitality to be a "buffer" is a fine line to walk, as if it's not significant enough it'll feel like needless busy-work, but if it's too impactful then it will minimize the need for characters to prepare healing magic, medkits, or the like. I look forward to hearing more about the system as things move forward.
Resting grants 1+level HP and about 4 Vitality, Short rests do half. However, medical specialists, magic, and items can all contribute to this in more impact ways. Vitality can be healed with food, which is not needed to survive by default, contributing only to healing vitality really.

Weapon damage is mentioned in above. Thanks for your interest in the game. It's good to know that I'm basically guaranteed your insights each time I post.
 
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