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Ozerulz
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Funnel

Post by Ozerulz » Tue May 21, 2019 11:51 am

How many of you run your funnels as written with 1d4 to start? Generally the characters end up dead with any contact at all. I am considering running future ones at 1d4+2 so they might at least survive one whack possibly.

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GnomeBoy
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Re: Funnel

Post by GnomeBoy » Tue May 21, 2019 3:36 pm

I'm pretty sure I've heard of Brendan LaSalle giving Zeroes in the Funnels he runs max hp (so 4 in most cases).

I've run maybe a dozen Funnels myself, and never found the RAW version to be a problem in any way. Any character with more than 1 hp can survive a hit, and I've certainly seen that happen at times. If Zeroes were clearly dropping too fast, I have once or twice just dropped monster/trap damage a step down the Dice Chain for the rest of the adventure to reduce lethality a micron or two.

But I don't think you'll break anything by adding 2 hp to all the Zeroes. If you've got a smaller group of players, it might even be advisable! :mrgreen:
Gnome Boy • DCC playtester @ DDC 35 Feb '11. • Beta DL 2111, 7AM PT, 8 June 11.
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Kuruz, Mendicant, N • AC 8, 4 hp • R-1, F0, W0 • S9 A8 S9 P11 I16 L8
Zend, Grave Digger, L • AC 9, 3 hp • R-1, F0, W1 • S14 A6 S9 P13 I13 L6
Mercer, Outlaw, N • AC 12, 2 hp • R0, F-1, W1 • S7 A9 S6 P13 I8 L13
Dejah, Ropemaker, C • AC 10, 2 hp • R0, F1, W-1 • S8 A12 S15 P7 I11 L7

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Turelus
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Re: Funnel

Post by Turelus » Wed May 22, 2019 2:09 am

All the funnels I've run have been completely random HP. I always assumed the idea that the characters die in one hit is somewhat intended, as the funnel is meant to weed out characters so by its end they have one or two each.
I found in my groups it also added to a level of investment with the characters that did have good HP, as it was another good stat they wanted to keep a character alive so they had that advantage at level 1.

I've run Portal Under the Stars and Sailors on the Starless Sea with complete random HP and had the groups complete both.
I think both times it was about 16 level zero characters which went though, I think I did give some top-up characters in Sailors and I know by the end of the adventure one player was out of characters the other three had one or two each.

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Re: Funnel

Post by BanjoJohn » Wed May 22, 2019 3:01 am

We've always used random hp. Sometimes its a problem, sometimes its not, its random.

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Ravenheart87
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Re: Funnel

Post by Ravenheart87 » Thu Jun 06, 2019 5:50 am

Ozerulz wrote: Generally the characters end up dead with any contact at all.
That's pretty much the point of it. Players learn to not rely on stats and use out of box thinking because of it. It deconstructs the usual modern D&D mindset quickly.
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Ozerulz
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Re: Funnel

Post by Ozerulz » Sat Jun 08, 2019 12:43 pm

Ravenheart87 wrote:
Ozerulz wrote: Generally the characters end up dead with any contact at all.
That's pretty much the point of it. Players learn to not rely on stats and use out of box thinking because of it. It deconstructs the usual modern D&D mindset quickly.
Doesn’t that only leave “run” as the only option?

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Raven_Crowking
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Re: Funnel

Post by Raven_Crowking » Sat Jun 08, 2019 1:32 pm

Ozerulz wrote:
Ravenheart87 wrote:
Ozerulz wrote: Generally the characters end up dead with any contact at all.
That's pretty much the point of it. Players learn to not rely on stats and use out of box thinking because of it. It deconstructs the usual modern D&D mindset quickly.
Doesn’t that only leave “run” as the only option?
Sometimes. Not usually.

There are all kinds of ways that one can approach encounters so that you don't have to fight them, and so that you don't have to run. The Portal Under the Stars, for instance, explicitly grants you the means of negating its largest "threat" encounter without seriously risking all of your characters.
SoBH pbp:

Cathbad the Meek (herbalist Wizard 1): AC 9; 4 hp; S 7, A 7, St 10, P 17, I 13, L 8; Neutral; Club, herbs, 50' rope, 50 cp; -1 to melee attack rolls. Hideous scar.

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GnomeBoy
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Re: Funnel

Post by GnomeBoy » Sat Jun 08, 2019 4:27 pm

Ozerulz wrote:
Ravenheart87 wrote:
Ozerulz wrote: Generally the characters end up dead with any contact at all.
That's pretty much the point of it. Players learn to not rely on stats and use out of box thinking because of it. It deconstructs the usual modern D&D mindset quickly.
Doesn’t that only leave “run” as the only option?
Out of all the Funnels I've run, I can only think of one case of the group 'falling back' to re-assess the situation. In the end, it didn't really make a difference, they still had to face what was out there... The problem that had them 'adventuring' to begin with wasn't going away because they retreated.

So running is the "only option" in a Funnel the same was it was on Normandy beach....
Gnome Boy • DCC playtester @ DDC 35 Feb '11. • Beta DL 2111, 7AM PT, 8 June 11.
Playing RPGs since '77 • Quasi-occasional member of the Legion of 8th-Level Fighters.

Link: Here Be 100+ DCC Monsters

bygrinstow.com

Kuruz, Mendicant, N • AC 8, 4 hp • R-1, F0, W0 • S9 A8 S9 P11 I16 L8
Zend, Grave Digger, L • AC 9, 3 hp • R-1, F0, W1 • S14 A6 S9 P13 I13 L6
Mercer, Outlaw, N • AC 12, 2 hp • R0, F-1, W1 • S7 A9 S6 P13 I8 L13
Dejah, Ropemaker, C • AC 10, 2 hp • R0, F1, W-1 • S8 A12 S15 P7 I11 L7

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Ravenheart87
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Re: Funnel

Post by Ravenheart87 » Sat Jun 08, 2019 11:01 pm

Ozerulz wrote:Doesn’t that only leave “run” as the only option?
Only if they are unimaginative. Luring enemies into traps, trying to persuade them with food or treasure, drawing a bigger monster upon to them, setting stuff on fire around them, flooding them with water, collapsing the ceiling, using a disguise to bypass them, are all options among many others. And yeah, sometimes fighting too. That's why you get a crapton of characters for funnel. Half of them will likely die. Deal with it, it's part of the game, and part of the funnel's fun. My players still share stories from earlier DCC RPG campaigns about how their zeroes died.
Vorpal Mace: a humble rpg blog with some DCC-related stuff.

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herecomethejudge
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Re: Funnel

Post by herecomethejudge » Sat Jun 15, 2019 7:47 am

1d4 + STA as intended has worked well for us. Yes, there are tons of deaths, but that's the point. It makes survival for the others that much sweeter. That's also why many funnels are written with built-in "Here are some extra PCs" checkpoints built in -- for example, the Beastmen tower in "Sailors on the Starless Sea." More than half the party got wiped out fighting the Vine Horrors near the main gate during a really bad bout of dice rolls, so they were needed.

Ozerulz
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Re: Funnel

Post by Ozerulz » Sat Jun 15, 2019 4:55 pm

For me I think DCC is the best thing to happen to RPGs since Gygax. So many unique quirks added to make it so much more interesting. However when I started this last campaign the players sat down and the first thing they said was “who cares they’re all dead anyway”. Yes remembering the deaths can be good and make the living so much the better but for me a character with 1 or 2 hp has zero chance. You can make something amusing out of their end but that’s all they’ve got. Personally at 3 Hp there’s some chance of surviving one hit at least. There’s so many different directions to go with DCC anyway.

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herecomethejudge
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Re: Funnel

Post by herecomethejudge » Sun Jun 23, 2019 8:34 am

Ozerulz wrote:However when I started this last campaign the players sat down and the first thing they said was “who cares they’re all dead anyway”. Yes remembering the deaths can be good and make the living so much the better but for me a character with 1 or 2 hp has zero chance. You can make something amusing out of their end but that’s all they’ve got.
I've been saving all the dead PC character sheets in a folder called "The Graveyard." There are about 30 in there now. At some point, I'm planning on having their ghosts return to fight the party as a spectral horde which can only be put down by banishing their spirits by magical ritual. So there's also that as far as remembrance!

Ozerulz
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Re: Funnel

Post by Ozerulz » Sun Jun 23, 2019 3:49 pm

herecomethejudge wrote:
Ozerulz wrote:However when I started this last campaign the players sat down and the first thing they said was “who cares they’re all dead anyway”. Yes remembering the deaths can be good and make the living so much the better but for me a character with 1 or 2 hp has zero chance. You can make something amusing out of their end but that’s all they’ve got.
I've been saving all the dead PC character sheets in a folder called "The Graveyard." There are about 30 in there now. At some point, I'm planning on having their ghosts return to fight the party as a spectral horde which can only be put down by banishing their spirits by magical ritual. So there's also that as far as remembrance!
Hahaha very nice I like that idea a lot. Thanks for the idea

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Re: Funnel

Post by BanjoJohn » Mon Jun 24, 2019 5:00 am

I think one thing to keep in mind during a funnel is perhaps keeping track of experience. Depending on what they go through, your players could/should be leveling up to level 1 before the end of the funnel if you award experience after each encounter/teachable moment kind of thing. If you are only awarding experience at the end, or giving an automatic level up after completing the funnel, then it can be more deadly.

One idea I have heard is maybe giving level zero characters a "death throws" or "death curse" that they can do one final action after being taken to zero hp. Or of course you could extend the "rolling over the body" rule to level zero characters.

Ozerulz
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Re: Funnel

Post by Ozerulz » Tue Jun 25, 2019 5:56 pm

I love DCC and I love the funnel. I have zero problem with killing off most of the characters in the funnel. My players however would like to have more than 1 HP. Problem solved 1d4+2 HP for the funnel. No death saves etc but at least on a roll of 1 or 2 the character can decide to run if they want. The first funnel we had the halfling with 1 HP left rolled 2 nat 20s in a row decapitating a goblin and then a goblin leader and the rest failed their morale save. Instant classic moment but that doesn’t always happen and players don’t mind dying if they felt there was some chance to live.

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Re: Funnel

Post by ThickSkullAdv » Wed Jun 26, 2019 6:03 am

Ozerulz wrote:How many of you run your funnels as written with 1d4 to start? Generally the characters end up dead with any contact at all. I am considering running future ones at 1d4+2 so they might at least survive one whack possibly.
I always start my funnel PCs with 1d4+2 (if you go into Jon Marr's Crawler 0-level party generator, that's one of the starting HP options - he named it after me calling it the "Snake Method" or something similar (Snake was my jr. high / high school nickname...)

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