“KD&D,” Part 5: Simpler and Better Combat (Explained)

This post is part of a series describing the rule changes I've made for my current fantasy role-playing campaign. "Kenton's Dungeons & Dragons," or "KD&D," is a full-fledged variant of the 1st Edition Advanced Dungeons & Dragons game initially released in 1977. Feel free to use some or all of these rule changes for your own D&D gaming, no matter what edition you play.

After many years of role-playing retirement, I started, in 2020, running a 1st Edition AD&D campaign at the request of my neighbors and family. Coming back to the game, I’ve realized that, while it’s still my favorite, the mechanics of it can be clunky and difficult, and that some parts are lame.

To make what I consider to be improvements to the core rules, I’ve borrowed ideas from issues of Dragon magazine and later D&D editions, as well as come up with a few of my own. My operating motto for re-tooling the game is to make it, “Simpler & Better.”

Thus far in this series, I’ve talked about:

This time, I’d like to take a deep dive into making combat “simpler and better” by looking at the 10 steps to a  melee round that I listed in the previous blog post. Those steps are:

  1. Is Anyone Surprised?
  2. How Far Away is the Enemy?
  3. What Are You Going to Do?
  4. How Will You Fight?
  5. Who Goes When?
  6. Roll “To Hit”
  7. Is it a Critical Hit?
  8. Roll Damage
  9. Does the Enemy Hit You?
  10. The End of the Melee Round.

Again, I developed some of the revisions myself, but most of them, I cribbed from the 1e Players HandbookUnearthed Arcana, and DMG, as well as the 2e Player’s Option: Combat and Tactics book.

So, grab your favorite beverage (I take my tea with lots of lemon and sugar), and perhaps a snack, and let’s have a long chat.

Continue reading ““KD&D,” Part 5: Simpler and Better Combat (Explained)”

“KD&D,” Part 4: Simpler and Better Combat (The Basics)

This post is part of a series describing the rule changes I've made for my current fantasy role-playing campaign. "Kenton's Dungeons & Dragons," or "KD&D," is a full-fledged variant of the 1st Edition Advanced Dungeons & Dragons game initially released in 1977. Feel free to use some or all of these rule changes for your own D&D gaming, no matter what edition you play.

After many years of role-playing retirement, I started, in 2020, running a 1st Edition AD&D campaign at the request of my neighbors and family. Coming back to the game, I’ve realized that, while it’s still my favorite, the mechanics of it can be clunky and difficult, and that some parts are lame.

To make what I consider to be improvements to the core rules, I’ve borrowed ideas from issues of Dragon magazine and later D&D editions, as well as come up with a few of my own.  My operating motto for re-tooling the game is to make it, “Simpler & Better.”

Thus far in this series, I’ve talked about:

This time out, I’ll tackle a fundamental, huge, and often overly-complicated component of AD&D, or any role-playing game: combat.

Continue reading ““KD&D,” Part 4: Simpler and Better Combat (The Basics)”

Tigers of a Different Stripe

The Fighting Tigers of Veda have been online for almost 21 years, and every so often, someone will e-mail me photos of their Tiger minis. I’m always glad to see what someone who can actually paint decently does with them! If you’ve painted up some and would like me to share them here, shoot an e-mail to me: kentonkilgore@kentonkilgore.com.

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A Sacred World, Part 1

The following is an excerpt from my upcoming novel Stray Cats, about the adventures of a cat named Pimmi across nine worlds, one of which will be familiar to visitors to this site. 

If you like 40K fiction (and/or cats), I think you'll like this, which incorporates a lot of Jungle lore, with adjustments made to avoid infringing on Games Workshop's intellectual property.

Chronology: 14.038.379

Sector: Udaipur <> System: Bagha <> Planet: Vedah

Like many other cats on this hot summer afternoon, Pimmi is napping in a patch of sun when the Kurindans come to end the world.

A shrill keening from high above jerks her awake. The kitten cringes, head tucked, ears flat, eyes following those of the thin boy sitting next to her on the cracked stone steps of the shrine, forgotten by almost all. A silvery shimmer, streaming white smoke, screams from the empty blue sky, spinning a flawless spiral for a second or two. Then it smashes into the village in the shallow valley below, a thundering explosion as the ground shakes. Pimmi’s heart beats a single time, and then the shockwave of the strike knocks the boy atop her as the scores of other cats who live here scatter.

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You Want Tigers? Have Some Tigers

(Models and header image by Bryan Stiltz. Used with permission)

Lately, I’ve had two separate Jungle visitors ask me the same question, and it’s one that’s come up a few times over the years. That question is, “May I start my own Fighting Tiger army?”

The answer is, “Absolutely.” Not only that, I’d be honored if you would.

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The ‘Bots Are Back: the 9e Necrons

Every time Games Workshop comes out with a new edition, they release new minis and codexes for two armies to get everyone excited. Ninth Edition is no different, and this time out, GW has published army books for Space Marines, as well as for Necrons. So, let’s take a look at the latest Tome of the Toasters, shall we?

Weighting in at a trim 120 pages, the new Codex: Necrons is still too long to do a thorough examination, so I’ll just cover what jumped out at me from the rules sections. But just so you know, if you liked the Post-C’Tan-Sassy-and-Liberated-Robot fluff, and the Heavy-On-The-Spectral-Green art from previous versions, you’ll find more of the same in the latest.

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Drinking From A Firehose: The New Space Marines Codex

If you’re having deja vu, it’s because Games Workshop published a Space Marine codex in 2019, and here we are, a year later, with a brand new one for 9th Edition. So, consider this review a follow-on to the one I did before.

As always, I’m not going to cover everything, because there is so much jammed into the new book’s 200+ pages. Instead, I’ll only discuss the things that jumped out at me. Like last time, I focus on the rules, but rest assured that there are plenty of cool background material and artwork in the new codex, almost 90 pages’ worth.

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Armies of the Jungle: The Kurindans

In this series, we showcase armies used by your humble Jungle Guides. By detailing how the army was collected, how the background and color schemes were developed, and how the army is used on the battlefield, we hope that this series will provide inspiration for those interested in collecting similar armies.

First Sergeant Jeremiah Zumwalt had seen—and killed—many foul xenos over his decades of service to the Imperium, but he had never before seen these: purple reptilian humanoids accompanied by a variety of green monstrosities, and towering over all of them, a charcoal-gray beast with jagged dorsal spines, whose plodding footsteps actually made the ground shake beneath Zumwalt’s feet, and whose roars threatened to burst the eardrums of him and his men.

Not that First Sergeant Zumwalt knew why these aliens were here. As on almost every other terrestrial planet in the galaxy, nickel was a common metal here on Esmarkka IV, used mostly for making steel. The bastions and the small garrison of troops here were in case of raids by wandering human barbarians on this sparsely-settled world, and even so, they had not been necessary for several years.  

Yet now, this mine was under a determined attack by a horde of xenos, cloaked in swirling green gas that made shots go wide, and a living nightmare large enough to blot out the sun. 

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No Point (For Me) In Points Values

Unless someone insists, I’m not going to use Points Values in 40K ever again.

Like probably the vast majority of you–barring those folks who started playing during the recently-departed 8th Edition days–I’ve always used Points Values when making my army lists. For many years, I’ve set my lists at 2,000 points, which has meant splitting 5 out of my 6 armies into separate lists so that I could make sure to use every figure and vehicle I own. I’ve spent hours configuring them just so, and carefully calculating each point.

No more of that. From now on, I’m just using Power Ratings, even though I never thought much of them before.

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Armies of the Jungle: Twilight Marauders

In this series, we showcase armies used by your humble Jungle Guides. By detailing how the army was collected, how the background and color schemes were developed, and how the army is used on the battlefield, we hope that this series will provide inspiration for those interested in collecting similar armies.

by Patrick Eibel

When you have been playing and collecting for as long as I have, you may find yourself too many figures, figures you got for army ideas never-built, or just want to create another army to fight against your current armies.  This is somewhat how my (now rather large) Chaos force came about.

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