Tuesday, October 23, 2012

d30 Sandbox Companion: A Report from the Front

From my point of view, one of the most interesting things that occurs when I develop something like the d30 Sandbox Companion or the d30 DM Companion, is the way things evolve -- evolution which often happens unknown to even the closest followers. One of the other things that seems to happen is the ongoing exclusion/inclusion of certain materials. Finally, I seem to generate so much d30 content on an ongoing basis, that I sometimes forget I have something else that should have been included. This past weekend was a case of "all of the above."

It all started with a chart I did in November of last year (one of the charts that really kicked off the d30 thing for me, just weeks after launching this blog.) Sure, that chart had its issues, and it was out of place in the d30 DM Companion, but it was one of the things that led to the idea of a d30 Sandbox Companion. Ironically, I don't think I ever gave the chart serious consideration for inclusion in d30 Sandbox Companion. I even did a visual refresh of it as recently as this past August. I say "visual" refresh because I didn't really do much other than a type/layout update; the content stayed essentially the same... until this weekend, when I was making sure there was nothing completed that I thought should be included in the d30 Sandbox Companion.

So I pulled out this chart and gave it another look, especially with the insight of making GREAT progress on the weather charts. (Be on the lookout for this Friday's d30 Feature of the Week!!!) In looking at this chart again, that little light bulb over my head came on! First, I changed the determination of severity (formerly a 1d3) to a calculated set of impairments (thus the addition of the "Impairments" sub-table at bottom left). I also changed the numbering of the "hex-protractors" for the final die roll; before it was pretty much left-to-right. Now, the higher the die roll result, the more "off course" the party will actually be. I also added the ability to make adjustments to the off-course roll for any overriding skills/knowledge on the part of the PCs. What I ended up with is something that feels "complete," and much less like the space filler it could have been.

Here's some more irony for you... in the post from August as part of a "d30 Sandbox Week" theme, I had planned on a "Vegetation Generator" but didn't have time to complete it, so I did that "visual refresh" of the "Off-course" chart that I mentioned above. Now that this "Off-course Determination" chart works so well (IMHO), I'm scratching the inclusion of a "Vegetation Generator" (which was added to the list of inclusions as recently as last Friday's d30 Sandbox Companion update.)

Check out the complete evolution of the "Off-course Determination" chart below...

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