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  1. #1

    [Programming] [5E] Your Input Needed for new Fumble Table Concept

    BACKGROUND
    Fumbles can make the game more fun.

    REQUEST
    • If you're interested in this idea, please let me have your comments and suggestions to improve it.
    • If you are experienced with FG MOD creation, your advice in coding this would be most welcome!


    ISSUES WITH FUMBLES AS CURRENTLY IMPLEMENTED
    If a fumble is based off a static probability per attack (e.g. a '1' on 1d20) then a high level character is much more likely to fumble than a low level character because they have more attacks per round. Why would a 20th level fighter fumble more often in a fixed time period than a 1st level wizard, when the fighter would have much more skill with a weapon? (note that the same issue does not arise with criticals).

    PROPOSED CHANGE TO FUMBLE
    1. A roll of a '1' indicates that a fumble is possible
    2. A second check is taken to see if the fumble occurs or not with a DC based on a number of variables (straw-man ideas for this check are below): Chance to fumble = 20 - modifiers 1-6. below
      1. subtract proficiency bonus
      2. subtract dexterity bonus
      3. each attack action per round > 1, subtract 5 (e.g. subtract 5 for 2 attacks per round); bonus attacks do not adjust the modifier
      4. Magic weapons subtract 1 per +1 of the weapon
      5. Light weapons subtract 1
      6. Heavy weapons add 1


    EXAMPLE 1
    A Nat 1 has been rolled and the player has a 9th level fighter with 12 dexterity, wielding a +1 maul who rolls the second check.

    1. Base Chance to fumble = 20
    2. subtract proficiency bonus (3)
    3. subtract agility bonus (1)
    4. each attack action per round > 1, subtract 5 (e.g. subtract 5 for 2 attacks per round); bonus attacks do not adjust the modifier (5)
    5. Magic weapons subtract 1 per +1 of the weapon (1)
    6. Light weapons subtract 1 (0)
    7. Heavy weapons add 1 - a maul is heavy (1)


    Fumble DC = 20 - 3 - 1 - 5 - 1 - 0 + 1 = DC11

    So the player rolls a second 1d20 and fumbles if s/he fails to roll 10 or less (50% probability of fumbling).

    EXAMPLE 2
    A Nat 1 has been rolled and the player has a 1st level wizard with 15 dexterity, wielding a dagger who rolls the second check.

    1. Base Chance to fumble = 20
    2. subtract proficiency bonus (2)
    3. subtract agility bonus (2)
    4. each attack action per round > 1, subtract 5 (e.g. subtract 5 for 2 attacks per round); bonus attacks do not adjust the modifier (0)
    5. Magic weapons subtract 1 per +1 of the weapon (0)
    6. Light weapons subtract 1 - a dagger is light (1)
    7. Heavy weapons add 1 (0)


    Fumble DC = 20 - 2 - 2 - 0 - 0 - 1 - 0 = DC15

    So the player rolls a second 1d20 and fumbles if s/he fails to roll 14 or less (70% chance of fumbling).
    ____________
    We can tweak the base chance and value of modifiers to adjust the chance such that a 20th level fighter, despite having multiple attacks per round, fumbles much less frequently than a 1st level wizard.

    Thanks in advance for your ideas and suggestions.

  2. #2
    LordEntrails's Avatar
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    I myself don't use fumbles in my games (because imo 5% is too high), but I think your approach is valid. You'll need to make an extension and not just a module. Maybe your extension can call upon a fumble table that can be loaded from a module, that way people can more easily change the results of what happens when a fumble occurs.

    Will be watching to see how this goes

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  3. #3
    As much as it can be fun. Please note that Fumbling outside of the natural 1 for an automatic miss, can be deadly to the point a party can wipe due to a fumble. In my campaigns combat is generally very tough. Fumbling with the variations there in could easily lead to either a wipe or an easier fight.

    I dont like the none player tactical choice within and the luck or unluck factor. An automatic miss is enough.
    If your running a vanilla, raw, low level campaign and do not make any adjustments to monsters as per MM, and no NPCs with player classes. Basically the most boring encounters you can think of, which in general Monsters Manual monsters are. Then by all means knock yourself out to add flavor to an already boring encounter. But if you like me testing player tactical abilities and maximizing their class with feats, then its a 100% guaranteed that players will die sometimes due to a fumble. And as per above, 5% is just way too much.

    If you roll a double 1, which is 1 in 400, by all means add a fumble for on a natural 1, do not do it. No one will ever like it. Its fun the first few times when your level 1-3 but at mid, high level, forget it.

  4. #4
    Thanks both for your thoughts. I agree that fumbles at 1 in 20 are way too common. I like the idea of a GM being able to tune the second roll according to their preferences. 1 in 20 may be OK for a 1st level mage, but 1 in 400 may still be too likely for a 20th level character. I'm not proposing any new consequences of a fumble rules, just tuning the probabilities. Also, if you've ever GMd a game when the ogre dropped his club, it can create some unexpected fun!

  5. #5
    Don't forget to disallow the proficiency bonus if they are not proficient with the weapon (or make them roll at disadvantage)

    Also, I don't like the bonus due to multiple attacks. If anything that would make you more likely to fumble as you are trying to do more in a shorter time span...imho
    Last edited by deer_buster; November 15th, 2019 at 14:35.
    aka Laendra

    Discord: Laendra#9660
    Ultimate license (FGC/FGU)
    Current Timezone : Central (CDT) (GMT -5)
    Playtime: Prefer 8pm Central, or later
    Playing: Looking For Group (5e purchased/homebrew)
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    Organized Play: 2369539

  6. #6
    Great idea re non-proficiency, @deer_buster.

    Re. Multiple Attacks bonus. Interesting point of view. And a great point too. Perhaps a mutliplier to proficiency would be more sensible. Eg 2x, 3x or 4x proficiency bonus for tier 2, 3 or 4 characters. Alternatively another tier modifier could be added - modifier=tier (1-4).

  7. #7
    I think the prof bonus scales up sufficiently to handle that, honestly. Perhaps a bonus if you use less attacks than you otherwise could, to indicate you taking your time to do it right
    aka Laendra

    Discord: Laendra#9660
    Ultimate license (FGC/FGU)
    Current Timezone : Central (CDT) (GMT -5)
    Playtime: Prefer 8pm Central, or later
    Playing: Looking For Group (5e purchased/homebrew)
    DCI: 3317036507
    Organized Play: 2369539

  8. #8
    Best option for fumble tables, don't.

    As a DM I understand the attraction.
    As a player I NEVER enjoy games where fumble tables are used.

    Also if you are using fumble tables, shouldn't you also use Crit tables? Same sort of math but with a chance to insta-kill the target?
    Code:
                            .         -=BuBaDragon=-
               _._           ( .   
             .'   `-. (\\     )    He ain't real smart,
           .'    )   `'  _\__'     but boy can he lift
          / (   (___ `.  ___^\_    heavy objects.....
          \ '^^^^^^ .\\-\___\\-`   
    *******`""""""") ;***********************************
                   |/
                   '

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by BubaDragon View Post
    Best option for fumble tables, don't.

    As a DM I understand the attraction.
    As a player I NEVER enjoy games where fumble tables are used.

    Also if you are using fumble tables, shouldn't you also use Crit tables? Same sort of math but with a chance to insta-kill the target?
    Thanks for sharing your perspective. I grew up playing Role Master, so learned to love them! I appreciate that not all house rules are for everyone.

    I do use critical tables in my game, however, the probability of a critical in a given round tends to scale in an intuitive fashion based on an increasing number of attacks per round. It does raise a question for spell casters, however, for those GMs who use fumbles and critical for spells (I don't). Should the probability of fumbles reduce and that for criticals increase as a character level rises?

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by BubaDragon View Post
    Best option for fumble tables, don't.

    As a DM I understand the attraction.
    As a player I NEVER enjoy games where fumble tables are used.

    Also if you are using fumble tables, shouldn't you also use Crit tables? Same sort of math but with a chance to insta-kill the target?
    Whereas I really enjoy them, as some of them get quite creative and puts your party in sometimes hilarious situations, even when those situations can be deadly. Nothing funnier than when your archer has to re-roll his attack as he shoots you in the back instead of the goblin he was aiming at, gets a crit on you, dropping you into death save territory. Everyone groans, then laughs about it, and then you make your death save or get healed, or TPK ensues. All in good fun.
    aka Laendra

    Discord: Laendra#9660
    Ultimate license (FGC/FGU)
    Current Timezone : Central (CDT) (GMT -5)
    Playtime: Prefer 8pm Central, or later
    Playing: Looking For Group (5e purchased/homebrew)
    DCI: 3317036507
    Organized Play: 2369539

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