Monks and rarity

I had our new player roll up her character last night, and she rolled well enough to qualify for the monk class.

This is actually quite exceptional. There is some leeway with stats in Hackmaster, you may adjust your stats with building points. So an average character with a few flaws will start with approximately 40-50 building points. These are used to increase Ability Scores, and purchase Talents, Skills, and Proficiencies. Each Ability Score requires 4 of these to raise by one whole number, so although there is some leeway, your class is very often decided by the roll of the dice.

In her case she rolled exceptionally well. Monks require very high ability scores (like Paladins and Cavilers) so this has the effect of making them less common. In a single game, you're unlikely to notice the difference really, but having been running campaigns for almost two full years now this is the first monk I've had. I look forward to killing one of those. In that time I've had no Paladins, one single Caviler, and just one Ranger. I've had lots of Fighters, Thieves, and Magic-Users. The end result is that these special classes are just that - special.

It's one of the nice things about old school gaming. When things that are statistically unlikely happen, it's interesting. Roll enough dice, and they will happen sooner or later. This is counterbalanced by Grigori's player who's last rolls for a character were bad. He got a 16 for strength, and the rest of his Ability Scores were below 8. I think he's having difficulty dealing with a numerically substandard character, but this too is one of the things that's interesting about old school play. Your Ability Scores are not tied into your survival rate. It'll be interesting to see how that goes.

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