I got this weird inspiration while working on the mechanics for Norvendae. I wanted to bridge players from Dungeons & Dragons to my system as seamlessly as possible, but I didn’t really want to go to the trouble of rewriting a bad system. It started with the idea of streamlining monster creation. The project is called “Dee Point Five.”

Fourth Edition Dungeons & Dragons made some great leaps forward in terms of making a game of D&D, as opposed to what some designers, optimizers, and gaming philosophers would refer to as “Magic Tea Party” (a tad redundant, I might add), and what I aim to do is make the game more playable from the monster end first.

Which game, though? Third Edition. While Wizards of the Coast seems to apparently be distancing itself from the innovations of Fourth Edition, the idea here is to use what was learned in 4e to make some core changes to 3.x that make the game easier to run, build for, and play, starting with the infamous “Page 42” concept.

Page 42 (the ultimate answer to life, the universe, and everything) of the Fourth Edition Dungeon Master’s Guide has a table with the basic formula needed to create a monster of any level in all of 4e D&D. It reduces the Monster Manual to what amounts as “Downloadable Content,” being that it’s just a bunch of stat blocks.

I’ve made a preliminary table for Third Edition creatures, to emulate the feel of Fourth Edition’s “one creature per character” concept, though the strength of it’s monsters is sort of predicated on one house rule I devised for determining starting hit points for players: Constitution score plus maxed hit die at 1st level.

Also recommended, but as of yet untested: at each level, characters gain a fixed number of hit points, which is unaffected by their Constitution. For sorcerers and wizards (and other classes that use the d4), this is 3 hp per level. Those who gain one-dee-six hit points, instead gain 4 hp per level, and so on (5 for d8, 6 for d10).

I must emphasize, don’t add Constitution to hit points beyond first level.

Beyond this, I’m taking inspiration from Fourth Edition for the formatting of creature stat blocks and special powers. Creatures will no longer have ability scores at all, and should thus be immune to all forms of ability damage and drain. This will render most poisons, which players don’t get anyway, and a few spells, ineffective.

Stay tuned for more information.