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Adventure in the World of Imagination - Rules of the Game

My son always loved dice...
Last week I posted about my latest passion project, Adventures in the World of Imagination. This is a simple, yet fun and flexible game to play with kids of 3-4 years old and up. I made this game thinking about my son, and I have been playing with him for a few weeks and we've had some fun times. Today I will post my draft of the chapter that contains the rules of the game.

Chapter 2: Rules of the Game

This game is all about using creativity to solve problems and overcome challenges, but even though some rules must be established in order to put organize how the heroes created by the players will do all this.

Core Rule

The core rule revolves around the acting player character rolling a D6 and adding all their bonuses (that can come from character traits and the player’s own creative actions) and comparing the result to a D6 rolled by the Referee, which is also modified by the obstacle bonuses. This rule is used whenever a situation involves risk and it’s unsure whether the hero would be able to accomplish the action or not.

If the player rolls higher than the Referee, they decide what happens, narrating how they defeated the challenge or overcame the obstacle. If the Referee rolls higher than the player, they describe what happens, how the character was unable to overcome the obstacle and the character loses one of his traits temporarily (which can be recovered). In case of a tie, the one with the highest die roll wins. If that’s still a tie, the character will need to try again.

The great space knight Zultan is trying to reach the Crystal Moon before the Great Meteor hits it and destroy the moon. He is a Space Knight and has Rocket Boots as his traits, meaning that he add +2 to his D6 roll. Pablo, the player of Zultan also says he is going to use his Super Speed and that he is going to throw other rocks in front of the Meteor to slow him down. As the player described 2 creative actions, he gains another +2, meaning he will roll a D6+4. The Referee will roll a D6+2 as the Great Meteor has the Super Fast and Gigantic trait. Pablo rolls a 3 for a total of 7 and the Referee rolls a 4 for a total of only 6. This means Zultan was able to stop the meteor from hitting the moon, saving everyone!

Combat

When the heroes are battling foes, the situation is resolved very much the same as described above. However, for each Trait the Monster have, they can lose one die roll against the players and still fight another round. That means that more powerful enemies will have more traits and can last longer in fights.

Player characters will also lose traits if they lose the roll, and are taken out of action if they lose all their traits. This can mean any number of things depending on the situation, from just being knocked unconscious, being captured, fallen into a deep chasm. Death however, might be out of the table for a while, as it can be hard to deal with for kids (although an adventure in the spirit world might work for some).

Surprising everyone, a crack in the meteor surface opens, and a creature slowly steps out of it. Made of living lave, the monster screams “DESTROY!!!”, and beats the ground with clenched fists before lounging towards Zultan. Pablo tells Zultan will put water on his mouth and spray the magma monster with it, as he saw on a cartoon that water can cool down magma, turning it to stone. Zultan has the Super Strong trait and Pablo had two great ideas, cool him down and throw water at him. That means Pablo will roll a D6+3. The magma monster has the Very Hot trait, so it roll a D6+1. Pablo roll a 1, for a total of 4, but the Referee rolls a 5, for a total of 6. This means that the magma monster wasn’t affected by the water and managed to harm Zultan with his extreme heat. Zultan is weakened and temporarily loses the Super Speed trait. After that, Pablo says his hero is going to shake his arms really, really fast to create a hurricane, cooling the magma monster down and blowing him away. This time, he rolls a 5, for a total of 8 (5 plus the Super Strong trait and the idea to cool it down and throw it away). The magma monster rolls only a 2, for a total of 3. He is thrown away and is slowing being turned to stone. For the final round, Pablo declares Zultan will just smash the monster to bits with his Magic Hammer. That also allows him to roll a D6+3, as Zultan has a Super Strong and Magic Hammer trait, and the idea to smash stones with a hammer gives him another +1. The monster has lost its Very Hot trait anymore, so it will roll just a D6. Pablo rolls a 4, for a total of 7, which the Referee can’t beat. The monster is defeat!

Teamwork

When two characters act together, helping one another, they apply all the traits that are applicable (although the same trait cannot be applied twice, even if multiple characters possess it) and a D6 is rolled for each character taking part in the action, with the highest rolled result being used.

The first time Zultan faced magma monster was when he was training in the Academy of Star Rangers, and he was in a mission with his friend Sasha, the Warrior Princess. At that time, they attacked a magma monster together applied both his Super Strong and Magic Hammer traits, as well as her Solar Sword and Warrior Princess, for a total of +4 bonuses. They would also roll 2 D6 and use the one with the higher result!

Facing Multiple Foes

When a single character is facing multiple enemies, the Referee will combine all the applicable traits, not repeating any of them, and roll a single D6 for every foe, using the best result to compare with the player’s result. Facing multiple enemies at one without any help can be very dangerous for our heroes.

If more than one magma monster had come out of the great meteor, Zultan would be in bigger trouble. The Referee would roll two D6 and add the modifiers to the one with the highest result.

Optional Rule: Critical Success

To make things a little faster and more exciting, Referees may allow players to achieve a Critical Success when they roll a “6” on their die. This means they automatically succeed on the action, no matter what the Referee rolls on their. In combat, a Critical Success completely defeats the opposition, no matter how many traits they have left to lose. Referees and players are also free to describe additional beneficial effects a Critical Success might have on a specific situation.

After dealing with this great threat to the people of the Crystal Moon, Zultan decides he wants to make a great statue out of the gigantic meteor that was going to hit it to impress the King of the Crystal Moon. Zultan has the Super Strong and Magic Hammer trait, and Pablo describes how carefully Zultan will sculpt a statue of himself stopping the meteor. This means he will roll a D6+3 again. The Referee rolls only a D6 as the meteor had no particular trait to make it more difficult. Pablo rolls a 6 on the die and the Referee declares a Critical Success. Zultan creates such a magnificent statue the King declares him Hero Protector of the Moon!

Recovering

After losing traits due to failed rolls, a character can recover a lost trait by resting and taking other actions that would help them recover. If the player decides to take a rest or perform an action to recover a trait, they do so automatically. They usually cannot take multiple actions to recover multiple traits in sequence, as this requires help from others. If they seek help, each person helping them recover an additional trait. This takes time between the action in the adventure, and things can get more complicated for the heroes.

Zultan was harmed by the magma monster and temporarily lost the Super Speed trait. To rest and recover from this injury, Pablo says he will rest his feet on a pool at the Crystal Moon. Thus, after this scene, Zultan has recovered his Super Speed trait.

Making Rulings

The rules of this game are very simple and abstract. They are not intended to foresee every possible situation that arises. Kids are some of the most creative people you can ever play with. Thus, Referees will be required to make Rulings, which means judge specific situations and determining what happens and how to apply the rules to them. The Core Rule is very versatile can apply to almost anything, and every obstacle can be turned into a trait for purposes of modifiers for the D6 roll.

Zultan has been working as a Hero Protector on the Crystal Moon for a long time now, and everything has been calm, but now a group of space ghosts are approaching in an invisible spaceship, and the Referee asks pablo how is Zultan protecting the Crystal Moon and keeping guard. Pablo says how fast Zultan flies around the moon, always keeping his eyes open for any trouble. His Super Speed trait and the action of keeping his eyes wide open give Pablo a D6+2 to roll, and the space ghosts will roll a D6+2 too, as they are ghosts in a invisible ship (that’s twice as hard to spot). Pablo grabs the dice and rolls a 3, for a total of 5, and the Referee rolls a 5, for a total of 7. Those space ghosts are going to cause problem now...

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