“One of the characteristics of old-school inspired games such as this one is the large number of unique, special-case systems that arise. A given alien beast might have a 20% chance of knocking a human prone with its attacks, for example, or a 1 in 6 chance of swallowing a person it bites. A forgotten research station might be glowing with a deadly radiation that drains away one point of Strength for every ten minutes the PCs stay inside. Players shouldn’t be surprised to face these situations. Part of the charm of the genre is that PCs can never be entirely certain of their chances, or wholly confi dent about what an alien creature or abandoned outpost might do to them. GMs should avoid creating such one-shot systems when more general systems would serve just as well, but they shouldn’t feel obliged to transform every peril into something that can be diced out with the rules in this chapter.”
My first response after reading this? “Amen!” I said to myself.
As I’ve talked about before, the GM doesn’t have to follow the same rules the players do. The GM needs to be fair, consistent, and not be a jerk, but otherwise the rules can be bent, ignored, and/or modified as the GM deems necessary to create a fun, involving game.
In other news, I completed my entry for the Secret DM’s contest (see the blogpost immediately below this one). There’s now little point in anyone else entering because of the sensational surprises in “The Sinister Silo”. Ergo, y’all might as well just let me win. Right?