On A Roll All the Dice Table: Locks

Hello, hello!
Per the question, how does the thief open locks, initiated at Rather Gamey, then covered by Telecanter, Zak S, and Roger, I've written a table for locks, and have another idea for a way to make it more like a game.

I've created a "roll all the dice table" for locks, to go along with my "roll all the dice table" for keys.

I really liked the discussion regarding BURP & guessing, but dislike the whole thieves only get one card that once they use is gone forever idea. Rogers comment got me thinking about lock mini-games and what would be fun for a thief, but was something any player could do.

An Example from the table! Rolls were d4:4, d6:4, d8:7, d10:9, d100:80, d12:6, d20:19

You find a Storm Arch Steelpin lock made from Bronze with six Tumbler Pins
Hidden DM Info, The lock has 10 guesses, and the pins are
T1: Probe
T2: Rake
T3: Probe
T4: Probe
T5: Probe
T6: Probe

Roll all the dice!
Describe the lock name!
Determine each tumbler pin's action required to open ("set"). Write this down and keep it hidden. Any player may attempt to disarm the lock. Have the player make his guess for the first tumbler. Let him  know the status of the first pin. It's set if the player guessed correctly, it's stiff if the player missed the correction option by one, and it's jammed if they missed the correct option by more than one. The player can retry if the lock is stiff, and can try to guess the next tumbler pin if the current tumbler pin is set.

Thieves: A thief can unjam tumbler pins. A thief can unjam a number of pins in a lock equal to the thief's level. Lockpicks allow the thief one extra unjammed pin. Masterwork lockpicks allow two extra unjammed pins. After this limit is reached, the thief may attempt to unjam pins by rolling his open locks percentage.
Action Required Jams When
Bump Rake or Probe
Undulate Probe
Rake Bump
Probe Undulate or Bump
If you choose an option more than 1 space away, You jam the lock.

Guess limit: After the number of guesses reaches the guess limit (i.e. if the limit is 4, after the fourth guess) all pins in the lock (including any already set) jam. If every pin is then unjammed by a thief, the whole lock resets and the guess limit starts over.

Each guess and each pin that is unjammed takes 1 round.

Once the tumbler pin is jammed, if the thief is out of auto-unjams, and fails his open locks roll to unjam a lock, the lock is Joskeyed and can no longer be opened.

Traps: Roll the D4, D6 and D100. Traps work *just* like locks, except in reverse. Jamming a pin allows you to move onto the next, and setting a pin requires you to 'unset' the pin (which works like unjamming the lock). If you hit the guess limit, the trap is triggered.

Modifying: Certain high level traps and locks will have 8 options, using the BURP actions above, each with a hard and soft technique. If the wrong technique is used on the tumbler pin, the pin jams. (i.e. the pin requires a soft undulate in order to set the pin. A hard rake is tried. Even though rake would normally make the lock stiff, it jams because any hard technique jams the pin.)

You may also make the table circular, this makes Bump and Probe less extreme options. Circular means that probe is next to bump and rake  and  bump is next to undulate and probe in the listing, meaning each option is jammed by only one other option.

And now the table! Remember, roll the dice only once - read the die multiple times for each table! Read the d8+d10 table, by finding the number shown on the D8 and then finding the number on the d10. The name of the lock is made by reading table Name 1 and Name 2, using data from Name Fill to fill in the second name. They 8 d10 options in name 1 table are arranged by theme, so if you have a specific theme, you can ignore the d8 result and just pick the one you want.

D4 D6
This is the number of tumblers This is the guess limit, set to the number of tumblers + this roll.

Name 1:d8+d10 Material Constructed From: d6+d8

  1. goblin
  2. kobold
  3. orc
  4. gnoll
  5. hobbit
  6. elven
  7. dwarven
  8. gnomish
  9. hobgoblin
  10. ogre
  1. Heckler
  2. Kerr
  3. Samson
  4. Kruger
  5. Massey
  6. Phillips
  7. Morgan
  8. Knoppix
  9. Carlsbad
  10. Stark
  1. drow
  2. duergar
  3. ettin
  4. eagle
  5. bear
  6. turtle
  7. gazelle
  8. giant
  9. guard dog
  10. lion
  1. mage
  2. wizard
  3. thiefstopper
  4. elemental
  5. sentinel
  6. gate
  7. defender
  8. trueguard
  9. tripleguard
  10. sureguard
  1. fort
  2. house
  3. tower
  4. castle
  5. chest
  6. safe
  7. vault
  8. forge
  9. trench
  10. outpost
  1. gatekeeper
  2. rose
  3. blackthorn
  4. ivy
  5. oak
  6. timber
  7. frost
  8. ice
  9. storm
  10. firebreak
  1. square
  2. triangle
  3. sphere
  4. arrow
  5. heft
  6. sword
  7. shield
  8. armor
  9. divine
  10. arcane
  1. spellbreaker
  2. keyless
  3. astral
  4. etherial
  5. jewel
  6. vigilant
  7. solitude
  8. shadow
  9. fortress
  10. spire

1. (No Entry)
2. Wood
3. Ivory
4. Glass
5. Marble
6. Steel
7. Silver
8. Copper
9. Iron
10. Bronze
11. Bronze
12. Brass
13. Nickel
14. Gold

Name 2 D20 Name Fill D12
  1. (W) Ward
  2. (W) Ball
  3. (W) bolt
  4. Mark (#)
  5. (L) Ring
  6. Number (#)
  7. (W) Lock
  8. (L) series
  9. (W) Pin
  10. (W) Wheel
  11. Catch/Clip/Claw (pick 1) -2 tumblers
  12. (W) gripper (-1 tumbler)
  13. (L)-(#) Plate
  14. Demon (+ Reread table using d10) +1 Tumbler Pin
  15. Mighty (+ Reread table using d10) +1 Tumbler Pin
  16. Solid (+ Reread table using d10) +1 Tumbler Pin
  17. Nested (+ Reread table using d10) +1 Tumbler Pin
  18. Grated (+ Reread table using d10) +1 Tumbler Pin
  19. Arch (+ Reread table using d10) +2 Tumbler Pins
  20. Dragon (+ Reread table using d10) +2 Tumbler Pins
Read the name fill as either the number on the die (#), the word (W) or the letter (L)
  1. Dead / A
  2. Rim / C
  3. Hold / G
  4. Iron / J
  5. Odd / H
  6. Steel / K
  7. Turn / L
  8. Draw / M
  9. Smooth / S
  10. Double / O
  11. Triple / T
  12. Stone / X

Tumbler Type: D100

Bump Undulate Rake Probe High Level
Tumbler Pin 1 01-25 26-50 51-75 76-00 Even = Soft
Odd = Hard
Tumbler Pin 2 Both Dice Even 10's die odd 10's die even Both Dice Odd Soft = <50
Hard = >50
Tumbler Pin 3 Total of both dice less than or equal to six Total of both dice less than or equal to 10 Total of both dice less than or equal to 14 Total of both dice less than or equal to 18 Total of both dice is even = soft, else hard
Tumbler Pin 4 Read dice backwards, with ones die first. Assign as Tumbler Pin 1 Even = Hard
Odd = Soft
Tumbler Pin 5 Read the d4 die, calculate this Tumbler Pin as the number on this table that is shown on the D4. Use the opposite result of the calculation selected (i.e.if a 2 is shown on a d4, Hard is <50)
Tumbler Pin 6 Read the d8 die. Divide by 2 and round up. Calculate this tumbler as the # shown. Use the opposite result of the calculation selected (i.e.if an 8 is shown on a d8, 8/2 is 4 so, if the reversed number is even, soft is choosen)

Notes: Tumblers and guesses cannot be reduced below 1, and tumblers cannot be increased beyond six.


  1. I like this. I'll have to try it out in my next game. Thanks.

  2. I like the detail that results from this, I got a Vigilant Silver Turn Lock! Those things are reliable :)

    I think it might be more than I'd want to have to sort through at the table. So I'd need to prepare locks ahead of time.

  3. I agree Telecanter - I almost exclusively use the lock table in prep. It *might* be doable if instead of using the d100 and calculating, you just rolled xd4 where x is the number of tumblers.

    If I had to do it in play, that's what I'd do.

    The key table however is something that although it takes a second (20 seconds or so) allows you to come up with a key right at the table.

  4. Very cool! Not often you get to roll all the dice at once.


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