Thursday, June 16, 2016

Quick thought on wandering monster checks

A very short post today.

In B/X, the rules specify rolling for wandering monsters every other turn in the dungeon, with a 1 on 1d6 indicating that an encounter will take place next turn.  For whatever reason, I always had trouble with this "every other turn" procedure.  I'd forget whether I had rolled or not last turn; sometimes I ended up rolling several turns in a row, and sometimes I'd skip several turns, distracted by more pressing matters.

Well, wait a second - we've got that seldom-used d12 just lying around.  How about rolling every turn, with a 1 on 1d12 indicating an encounter?  The odds aren't quite identical, but are within 1% of being equivalent to 1 on 1d6 every other turn, and it's one less thing I have to remember from turn to turn at the game table.


  1. I linked to this post on my blog, FYI. I like this idea, very simple and elegant.

    1. That explains the sudden spike in traffic to my humble little blog. Glad you found a worthwhile idea here!

  2. This is an excellent little idea and I'll implement it right away in my game. I like how it eliminates "safe turns". "Oh, the DM rolled last turn, so THIS turn, nothing will happen." In particular, 1-in-12 times, a new encounter will take place while the characters are treating their wounds from the last one, looting the bodies etc.


  3. I will also be implementing this into my game as well.

  4. I also often have the problem of forgetting the check every other turn, or when I made the check last.

    I must echo the comments of others in that I really dig on there being no more "safe turns." I don't think any of my players gamed the system that way (or at least not out loud), but I always like anything that adds tension and danger to the ol' dungeon crawl.

  5. The d12 IS seldom used, still . . . I'm in the habit of just having a monster show up when my guys have nothing to do. I may have to incorporate this d12 suggestion into my own game.


  7. the rules specify rolling for wandering monsters every other turn in the dungeon,

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