1.0 Preview: Environmental Hazards and Energy Drain

So you’ve fought your way through the hordes of the mummy king, lopped the head from his rotting undead neck, and looted the great treasury beneath his pyramid. Now, laden with heaps of gold, you emerge from the dungeon, only to remember that a hundred miles of desert separate you from the nearest market.

Sometimes it’s not the monsters that make a location memorable, but the environment. Even the weakest monsters can become challenging when the players are trying not to drown and fight them at the same time. A singular ninja might be no match for a team of trained guards, but when he uses the darkness to strike and disappear, they will have a much harder time catching him. Fighting the BBEG is one thing, but fighting him near a 500 ft cliff while an avalanche threatens to push you over is a very good argument for putting off the final confrontation.

Now, you’ll have the tools to make all these things possible. The environmental hazard preview includes rules on suffocation and starvation, falling to your doom, a list of environmental factors for magical or exotic locations, and rules for handling the wide variety of “big things that push you around” that nature has on tap.

The environmental rules also make use of the new [Energy drained] condition, which is a replacement for the role that negative levels and ability damage used to play. It is our opinion that referring to a single scaling source of penalties is a lot easier than changing half of your sheet every time a necromancer gives you a high five.

6 comments on “1.0 Preview: Environmental Hazards and Energy Drain

  1. Marshall on said:

    This release is going to be awesome. Logical new rules, environments and, hopefully, new art.

    • The Kickstarter update about this rules update also reveals a related piece of art:

  2. Make that “definitely new art”.

  3. some guy on said:

    I was a bit disappointed that you didn’t list any examples of combinations of enviromental hazards, like deceptive, haunted and tricksy for a forest plagued by evil trickster spirits that delight in causing travellers to lose their way. I’m also a bit flabbergasted that you didn’t list an example or two for each severity level of onrush, and you seem to be missing environmental hazards for extremely cold and hot environments (I don’t think elemental areas will cover it). But overall it looks pretty good.

    • One of the major selling points of the Legends system is it’s flexibility and how open ended it is. I like being able to have different physical laws. In one of two campaigns I’m running, a rock-slide across a path half-way up a 110 degree slope would be severity 5. My other campaign has more of a Naruto or Diablo feel, and that would only be severity 3. Once they’re higher level, it’ll only be severity 2.

      • some guy on said:

        A Naruto or Diablo feel? How is that even comparable, I don’t even….

        Anyhow, I think you missed the point of the level system. By virtue of being higher level (and therefore having higher hitpoints and fortitude saves) a severity 3 is going to be about the same threat, perhaps even less of a threat for some character builds, than a severity 2 is now. The onrush becomes less of a threat without its severity being changed. Sure, you can do what you plan to do to provide a sense of faster power growth, but the lack of internal consistency is probably going to rustle someone’s jimmies.

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