The Initiative in Savage Worlds

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Tartenpion
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The Initiative in Savage Worlds

#1 Postby Tartenpion » Mon Feb 15, 2010 6:02 am

Hello everybody !

The first rule about the initiative in Savage Worlds is with deck cards.

But I know that there are alternative rules about the initiative.

One with a D12 and one with the Agility Tests. And I don't find these rules in the Savage Worlds Explorer Edition. If you know these alternative rules do you agree to give me it?

Thank you very much

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#2 Postby kreider204 » Mon Feb 15, 2010 10:33 am

I think those are just house rules. Those who use them might chime in. A couple of possibilities I can imagine:

1) roll Agility die
2) roll d12 and add Agility die type
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#3 Postby shadd4d » Mon Feb 15, 2010 11:46 am

The really old rules (1st Printing) had use a d20 to get initiative with a 20 having the effects of a Joker. The problem with this (and what is really great about the card system) is that there will be ties (not in the card system).

Personally, I recommend using cards like normal.
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#4 Postby Clint » Mon Feb 15, 2010 1:22 pm

shadd4d wrote:The really old rules (1st Printing) had use a d20 to get initiative with a 20 having the effects of a Joker. The problem with this (and what is really great about the card system) is that there will be ties (not in the card system).


Actually, the original option used a d12, making ties (and Jokers!) more common. The d20 version was an alternative I proposed on the forums later.

Basically, roll a d20 for initiative instead of drawing cards. Edges work basically the same way except Level-Headed (or Improved) allows roll 2 or 3 dice and taking the best, and Quick allows rerolls on a 5 or less.

It's not nearly as visual as the card system, but since players don't use d20s for anything else in the system, they can roll and leave the die in front of them to note when they go. And a 20 counts as a Joker.
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#5 Postby Jordan Peacock » Mon Feb 15, 2010 3:55 pm

Clint wrote:Basically, roll a d20 for initiative instead of drawing cards. Edges work basically the same way except Level-Headed (or Improved) allows roll 2 or 3 dice and taking the best, and Quick allows rerolls on a 5 or less.


This is basically what I had to do for an online mostly-text-based Savage Worlds campaign, since we had a die-roller program rigged up, but a card-based initiative program would have been more complicated to put together, with little in the way of payoff. (We wouldn't benefit from the tactile nature of having a card in hand, anyway.) To reduce the chance of ties, since we were playing with "electronic" dice anyway, we just upped it to "percentile dice," and changed the ranges for Quick and for Jokers accordingly. I still prefer using cards when I get the chance, but given the peculiar gaming environment, it sufficed.
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#6 Postby ron blessing » Mon Feb 15, 2010 4:05 pm

This is a little more fiddly, but you could roll Agility + Smarts as a fixed roll (no Wild Die). Quick gives you +2; Level-Headed gives you a re-roll. If the high roller has a raise over the second highest, they gain the Joker effect.

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#7 Postby CAM » Mon Feb 15, 2010 6:17 pm

For some reason I don't like the card system either. No sure why, but it just feels out of place for me - most will disagree however, and feel it is very much "in place' for Savage Worlds.

I've been using the D20 + Agility rules that Clint explained above, and this seems to have worked well for most of our sessions. I recommend doing that if you don't want to try the card system.

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#8 Postby Winsling » Mon Feb 15, 2010 7:38 pm

Ron Blessing wrote:This is a little more fiddly, but you could roll Agility + Smarts as a fixed roll (no Wild Die). Quick gives you +2; Level-Headed gives you a re-roll. If the high roller has a raise over the second highest, they gain the Joker effect.
The problem is how that variant would interact with the edges that take effect (which I can never remember the names of) when you draw a joker. If multiple people in the party want a joker under the current system, it's more or less even. If multiple people want one under your modification, it's likely nobody would get one.

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#9 Postby ron blessing » Mon Feb 15, 2010 8:39 pm

Winsling wrote:
Ron Blessing wrote:This is a little more fiddly, but you could roll Agility + Smarts as a fixed roll (no Wild Die). Quick gives you +2; Level-Headed gives you a re-roll. If the high roller has a raise over the second highest, they gain the Joker effect.
The problem is how that variant would interact with the edges that take effect (which I can never remember the names of) when you draw a joker. If multiple people in the party want a joker under the current system, it's more or less even. If multiple people want one under your modification, it's likely nobody would get one.


First off, this came off the top of my head, so this is all conjecture. That said, it seems to me it won't be uncommon for #1 initiative to be 4 higher than #2, so I'd bet the Joker effect would happen more, rather than never. But it would need to be tested to prove it. I'm sure it could be mathed out, too.

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#10 Postby 77IM » Tue Feb 16, 2010 10:18 am

Another idea: For initiative, you roll a d12. This can Ace, and if you get 20+, it counts as a Joker. This has roughly the same probability as drawing a Joker from a deck of cards. Edges work the same as Clint's d20 idea.

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#11 Postby Takeda » Tue Feb 16, 2010 11:13 am

77IM wrote:Another idea: For initiative, you roll a d12. This can Ace, and if you get 20+, it counts as a Joker. This has roughly the same probability as drawing a Joker from a deck of cards. Edges work the same as Clint's d20 idea.

-- 77IM



I suppose ... but drawing cards is cool ... you can't compete with that! Pulling a Joker or an Ace at a critical moment is almost worthy of applause ... rolling a d12, acing and then rolling almost another ace is noteworthy at best. Just my opinion but there you have it.

And another thing is ties = another roll off.

And what if there are effectively 2+ Jokers in play at the same time because of lucky dice rolls ... then more dice-offs.

If you have Quick you re-roll rolls of 5 or less. With Level-headed you roll twice and keep the best ... just adds a lot more dice-rolling when you could just draw a card. Rolling is simply not F!F!F!

If you don't have a deck of cards then fine ... roll away. If you have a deck of cards just "DRAW!"
Dean: "Ya' know she could be faking."
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[Dean nods]
Sam: "Dude, you're not gonna poke her with a stick?"
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#12 Postby ron blessing » Tue Feb 16, 2010 11:29 am

Takeda wrote:If you have a deck of cards just "DRAW!"


I'm with you on this. I've found faster methods of doing initiative in RPGs, but this is by far the most fun.

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#13 Postby Takeda » Tue Feb 16, 2010 11:31 am

Ditto! And I've played a massive amount of RPG's in the last 30 years ...
Dean: "Ya' know she could be faking."

Sam: "Yeah, what do you wanna do, poke her with a stick?"

[Dean nods]

Sam: "Dude, you're not gonna poke her with a stick?"

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#14 Postby Clint » Tue Feb 16, 2010 11:42 am

77IM wrote:Another idea: For initiative, you roll a d12. This can Ace, and if you get 20+, it counts as a Joker. This has roughly the same probability as drawing a Joker from a deck of cards. Edges work the same as Clint's d20 idea.


Gets a bit tricky with Quick as the odds of drawing a 5 or less is a bit different from rolling a 5 or less on a d12.

Maybe another idea would be to use a single d6, and if it aces twice (for a 12+), the character acts as if they have the joker.

Quick allows rerolls on a 1-2, and Level-Headed additional dice.
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#15 Postby ron blessing » Tue Feb 16, 2010 11:49 am

Here's an old favorite (OD&D). Each side rolls a d6. The high roll goes first, meaning the players can put together team tactics. Then throw initiative-based Edges out. :D

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#16 Postby Takeda » Tue Feb 16, 2010 12:12 pm

Clint wrote:
77IM wrote:Another idea: For initiative, you roll a d12. This can Ace, and if you get 20+, it counts as a Joker. This has roughly the same probability as drawing a Joker from a deck of cards. Edges work the same as Clint's d20 idea.


Gets a bit tricky with Quick as the odds of drawing a 5 or less is a bit different from rolling a 5 or less on a d12.

Maybe another idea would be to use a single d6, and if it aces twice (for a 12+), the character acts as if they have the joker.

Quick allows rerolls on a 1-2, and Level-Headed additional dice.


That's a good and FFF alternative!
Dean: "Ya' know she could be faking."

Sam: "Yeah, what do you wanna do, poke her with a stick?"

[Dean nods]

Sam: "Dude, you're not gonna poke her with a stick?"

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#17 Postby Magnus » Tue Feb 16, 2010 1:11 pm

Ron Blessing wrote:Here's an old favorite (OD&D). Each side rolls a d6. The high roll goes first, meaning the players can put together team tactics. Then throw initiative-based Edges out. :D


Hold on! Rules that old belong in a museum... Next thing you know you don't get a Notice roll before putting your hand in the dark hole and touching the sphere of annihilation...

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#18 Postby 77IM » Tue Feb 16, 2010 1:58 pm

Clint wrote:
77IM wrote:Another idea: For initiative, you roll a d12. This can Ace, and if you get 20+, it counts as a Joker. This has roughly the same probability as drawing a Joker from a deck of cards. Edges work the same as Clint's d20 idea.


Gets a bit tricky with Quick as the odds of drawing a 5 or less is a bit different from rolling a 5 or less on a d12.

True, but that is also true of the d20 idea. For d12, if you let Quick reroll on a 4 or less, the odds are about the same. For d20, you could let Quick reroll on a 6 or less.

Takeda wrote:I suppose ... but drawing cards is cool ... you can't compete with that!

Totally agree! I was a big skeptic about the cards, but it turns out it works really well, and now I really miss it in other systems.

But the OP asked for ideas and I cannot resist when asked for ideas. ;}

-- 77IM

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#19 Postby Poor Wandering One » Tue Feb 16, 2010 2:06 pm

OT
Sphere of Annihilation
Bolt 3x3d10 HW. No range. Target must be killed or there is no effect what so ever. If the target is killed the body and all it's gear is forever destroyed.

Back to the topic.
I LOVE the cards. They are easy to use. Very visual and you can do lovely things with them. I was running a modern supernatural game where the players were fighting a tarot based demon called the Ten of Swords. The demon had a number of things it could do every turn so I decided to use the deck to decide. Without the players knowledge I pulled the clubs out of the deck replacing them with more spades. I used the number of spades drawn in a round to decide what the demon did. It worked out quite well. The players caught on after a round or so and began to get into it. At one point the player with level headed chose to go with a lower card in an attempt to influence the demon by putting another spade in play. You could never do this kind of things with dice.

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#20 Postby Atomic Scotsman » Thu Feb 18, 2010 7:04 am

CAM wrote:For some reason I don't like the card system either. No sure why, but it just feels out of place for me - most will disagree however, and feel it is very much "in place' for Savage Worlds.


The first time I read through SWEX and got to the card system my first though was: "Damn that's stupid. It has to go."

But I think it's one of my favorite parts of the game now that I've actually used it. I even went so far as to buy a "fancy" deck of cards at the drug store made of some weird vinyl.

I like to mess with my PLayer's heads by randomly picking the deck up and shuffling it. Makes them think something bad is about to happen. :mrgreen:


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