Natural 1s and 20s in MYFAROG

MYFAROG has been a work in progress since its first inception back in 2015. Some things worked better than others, and many things have been vastly improved upon over the years. Originally, I really wanted to use 3D6 for skill resolutions, and therefore stuck to it for a long time. Too long, I think, because it never really worked as intended. Modifiers mattered too much, and results became too predictable. When I finally gave up on the 3D6 and started using a D20 (basically a percentile die [D100] in 5% increments), for the 4th edition of the game, all the problems with the 3D6 were solved (and I felt stupid for not doing so earlier), but some new problems arose.

With 3D6 a natural 3 worked fine as an automatic failure, because it occurs only 0.46% of the times you roll the dice. Likewise, a natural 18 worked fine as an automatic success, for the same reason. With a D20 though, the natural 1 and 20 each occur 5% of the time, and you have the same chance to get a 1 or 20 as you have to get any result between 1 and 20.

Now, going from a 0.46% chance to auto-fail or auto-succeed to a 5% chance changes the game dramatically, and not in a good way. Those natural 1s and 20s occur during play all the time.

After some time, suffering from this flaw, this has (finally, in October 2022) been solved for the MYFAROG system and let me explain how. Yeah, I want to tell, because I am really proud of this solution.

Instead of an auto-fail or auto-success on a natural 1 or 20 respectively, you now get a result called “Critical Failure Risk” when you cast a 1 and an “At worst Success Chance” if you cast a natural 20.

Page 33, MYFAROG. Changes are underlined in green:

What is a Critical Failure Risk and a Success Chance? Page 33, MYFAROG:

What this means in effect is that a character with little skill (e. g. +0) have little chance to succeed at absurdly difficult tasks (where you have to roll a 20 to succeed), but the more skilled characters actually have a chance to succeed, and the more skilled they are, the higher the chance for success. The 5% chance to auto-succeed (or achieve a semi-success) (by casting a natural 20) has been reduced to between 8.3% of 5% (= a 0.42% chance) (for characters with +0 or less in skill proficiency) up to 91.2% of 5% (= a 4.6% chance) (for characters with +10 in skill proficiency).

You see, in MYFAROG your skill proficiency can normally (without racial modifications or sorcerous or high-quality items at your disposal) not get any higher than +10. You can get +3 for your attribute modification, +5 if it is a Character Role skill, and +2 for Talents. A character with the ability to get +11 or +12 proficiency in a skill with have 5% chance to succeed or semi-succeed even at tasks more than absurdly difficult to perform.

A highly skilled character is thus less likely to fail critically (not least when performing a task he otherwise is very likely to succeed with). Which of course makes sense.

NB! This is an updated rule in MYFAROG and is present in the version that is for sale on Amazon. If you have an older edition, where this rule has not been included, you can update your book directly, by using the information you get in this blog post!