World of Ultraviolet v0.3

Grey tree under purple clouds
Photo by Pascal Debrunner on Unsplash

As previously discussed, I have started playing Ultraviolet Grasslands using World of Dungeons as a framework. “World of Ultraviolet” is the working title, because “World of Ultraviolet Grasslands” is just a mouthful.

At this point, we’re on version 0.3 and have played one (1) session, which consisted mostly of character and group creation with some initial patron-seeking at the end. Major changes include:

  • No attributes. At all. Not numeric, not qualitative, though some of the talents (abilities) can trace back to them (Agile, Tough).
  • No more rolling for armor: the game tries to get away from fiddly rolls and modifiers.
  • Pared down the skill list a little more so players can just roll a d20 twice if they want to generate their character randomly. You can get a few more while leveling, but hopefully they (and the talents) reflect in-universe growth.
  • Hit dice somehow escaped my attention before. I still don’t love them, and they increase very slowly: we want this game to focus on exploration and interaction, not combat.

I still have some things that could change. “Talents” versus “Abilities” may not matter much, but I keep using them both and should settle on one.

Advancement via XP has two problems. First, the growth happens semi-passively rather than directly in the foreground. I don’t really know how to model characters improving at exploration as they do it more, so this abstraction will do for now. I continue to think about better ways to trigger advances, though.

Second, what does “advancement” really mean? Does constraining players to “HD / skill / talent” really make the most sense, or instead can we have the players set in-universe goals and then work out what achieving that advancement looks like?

If you have thoughts or suggestions, I’d love to hear them!

2 thoughts on “World of Ultraviolet v0.3

  1. I ran a campaign in Ultraviolet Grasslands. I didn’t use the Seacat system, instead using a very simple homebrew system. One of the primary advancement systems we used just gave the group more capacity for inventory supplies. We played it as quite difficult (at first) to travel very far in the wilds, and as they gained the ability to carry more, they could explore more. It turned the ‘big map’ into feeling (mechanically) like a big dungeon that the players repeatedly went into and retreated from.

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    1. I forgot to say how we described it ‘in-world’… that the characters used their experience earned through travel and exploration in order to improve how well they pick good, high quality supplies and pack it more efficiently.

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