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D&D 3E
Combining D&D with d20 Modern? 
24th-Aug-2006 05:23 pm
Disney-Mermaid MythandMagic
Hello! Last night while I was at work (I work at a bookstore), I had a brainstorm for a campaign concept and I'm wondering if anyone of you have tried it or thought about it or have any ideas or concerns. I'm still at the pondering stage, and have a lot of research to do first, but the idea won't seem to dislodge itself from my mind.

I've always played D&D, though I have a little bit of experience with the White Wolf systems. But it occured to me last night that it might be entertaining to combine D&D with d20 Modern. Basically, you'd have a 'story' where the heroes are people from our world who find themselves in a fantasy world. I've never played d20 modern and am going to pick up the manual tonight. I have noticed that there are several rules that are different in d20 Modern, but I had ideas on how to work those. For example...

In d20 Modern, you don't keep track of exactly how much money you have in your investments and stocks and mortgage and savings accounts and checking accounts, etc. Instead, you make a roll similar to a skill check to see if you have enough money accessable at that moment to purchase the item or service. My thought is that I would keep that when the PCs are in their home world. But as they wouldn't be the first group to be sent to the fantasy world where they are going, they would be provided before hand with an "allowance" of the native coin. And *that* money we would keep track in the same way that gold coins are tracked in D&D. Likewise, there may not be specific magic-casting classes in d20, but there would be nothing to keep the PCs from getting their hands on a magic item or two. There are also stats in d20 Modern for historical weapons, and I figure that the team would have been trained in swords and bows, since you can't walk into a fantasy setting shooting a pistol.

But beyond that, I still need to research d20 Modern a lot more. I've never actually played it, but I hoped you guys might be able to offer some advice. Is there any major reason why combinging these two systems this way wouldn't work? Have any of you tried it before and if so, how did it go? And most importantly, would you play a campaign like this if you were offered the chance to?

Ideas, thoughts, concerns, questions are all welcome.
24th-Aug-2006 10:49 pm (UTC)
D20 Modern and D&D should combine pretty well. Indeed, I've often thought about rewriting D&D to use the Modern base classes and stuff.

I'd pick a system to use. Either it's a D&D game, or a Modern game (in terms of classes, skills, feats, etc). While you can ditch the Modern credit system while in the "D&D world," I would decide which version of the classes you want to use. Either the characters can use a long sword as a martial melee weapon, or as an archaic melee weapon.

I've heard this kind of idea before--and I think if you use Modern it might work. I see the characters being thrown to the D&D universe by accident--somethig goes wrong and they wind up in a different world. The first arc involves trying to get back to the Modern world. And perhaps once they do, the need to stop the various D&D creatures from taking over. So it starts as a D&D game on a Modern base, and then becomes a straight Modern game with perhaps a high level of fantasy.

Would it work? Depends on the individual adventurers. You could always try it. If you want to run it online, I'd play in it ;)
24th-Aug-2006 11:05 pm (UTC)
Hmm... I like those ideas.

I would definitely use the modern classes and 99% of the modern rules. The only thing I would consider changing is the money system while in the fantasy world, and maybe adding a few new skills, specifically knowledge ones. Someone with the craft pharmaceutical skill who finds themself in a new world would want to know which new flora and fauna might have medicinal capabilities, so a knowledge (herbalism) or something like that might be helpful.

For some reason, I find myself worrying that things could go way out of control if the characters aren't prepared to be in a new world, but I like your concept suggestions. I might consider using that, but flipping the order. So, first their world is invaded by various D&D creatures, then they have to go into the D&D world to close the barrier and protect their world... no doubt unsure if once they do they'll ever be able to make it back.

Hmm... I'll have to do more brainstorming. Thanks!
24th-Aug-2006 11:31 pm (UTC)
That could work too. It becomes a Modern game with a twist after the first story arc, which works.

Actually, that's a nice way to run a Modern game for a D&D group--modern characters dealing with D&D problems. I think if I ever run a Modern game I'd use that story :)
25th-Aug-2006 08:02 am (UTC)
Wow, that sounds like the plot of the first season of Digimon
25th-Aug-2006 01:22 pm (UTC)
Pure coincidence ;p. It's also the basic structore of most every modern vampire film (if you adjust D&D to mean "undead horror") and Harry Potter (at least at the beginning).

The "worlds-colliding" plot is kind of a standard.
25th-Aug-2006 08:29 pm (UTC)
Yeah, but the division between worlds isn't as solid in your 'modern fantasy' examples, compared to the 'separate D&D world'/digimon scenarios. Those are really more of a hidden society, really.
25th-Aug-2006 05:46 am (UTC)
I played in two games like this, and both of them worked out fairly well, rule-wise.

Game-wise, unless the PC's have full knowledge beforehand that they're entering into a different world, the driving mission will likely to be getting back home. It works fairly well, going both ways.

One game we were Modern characters that were thrown back into a D&D world, and in another we were D&D characters thrown into a d20 Future (same system, more tech ;]) world. Was good fun, if you could get around the culture shock (and even if you can't.)
25th-Aug-2006 06:02 pm (UTC)
The money system from D20 Modern is terrible. I've played with it before and its confusing, not fun and an all-around terrible gameplay mechanic.

For RPGs in general one of the things that most players enjoy is the collection gameplay. Finding and hording new items and treasure. The D20 money system takes this away and makes it annoying instead.

My advice is to avoid it at all costs.
25th-Aug-2006 08:52 pm (UTC)
Perhaps so, but given the way money can be managed and micromanaged in a modern society, much less a futuristic one, isn't it less of a headache to just use one number? It's not like the players are trolling around looking for treasure chests filled with cash every adventure. Surely the acquisition of new equipment and knowledge is collection enough for Modern players.
25th-Aug-2006 10:03 pm (UTC)
Well, I certainly wouldn't argue that a single cash value accurately represents modern finances... but I would argue that modern finances are not fun.

If I were running a modern campaign (or a campaign thats takes place partially in the modern world) I would NOT use the D20 modern money system because it is not fun. I would use a single cash-in-my-wallet number to represent player wealth. Credit, loans, bank accounts and other forms of finance that the D20 money system is meant to represent are just not interesting or fun. Having $15,600 in your pocket is much more fun than having a Wealth Rating of 9.

This suggestion comes directly from my experience playing the game (the money system was the single worst part of D20).
25th-Aug-2006 10:29 pm (UTC)
So are you suggesting that the player have a solid number for total wealth, or simply have only access to spending money?
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