The Opal Houses of Van-Karal, part II

found here:

Yesterday’s suggestion for a new way to create interesting fantasy characters generated some interest, and I find myself having a half hour time on my hands (a rarity these days), so I’d like to expand on my thoughts.

I also have decided to call my new game “The Opal Houses of Van-Karal” because I like the sound of those words.

To recap: Each character randomly determines three Abilities. These are special skills or powers. Regular skills come with the class and what can be reasonably infered by it. My suggestion yesterday was to use Zak’s Class System. But it doesn’t have to stop there. You can include Dungeon World Moves and Quest Abilities, as well.

So why not let the die rule and have it decide?

To determine the literary source of your character’s Ability, roll 1d6. Roll for each of the three Abilities.
1–4: Use Zak’s System
5: Use Dungeon World Moves
6: Use Quest Abilities

I have weighted the table in favor of Zak’s System because it is more OSR-is than DW or Quest, and I like it that way.

So you have rolled the source and pulled it up online. For Zak’s tables, it’s simple: you just roll a d100. For Dungeon World Moves and Quest, you’ll have to count the number of moves/abilities and come up with a method to determine them randomly. The quickest way is using, but I love the clattering of dice on the table, so what I’m doing is I’m counting the number of moves and use a die size that’s either exactly that number, or bigger. If a roll comes up “empty”, I simply reroll.

A sample character:

Zosh, a 1st level Lizard Barbarian
His first Ability is a DW move, the second one is from Zak’s, and the third one from Quest.

1. DW even has a Barbarian class. It has 26 moves, so I roll a d6 to determine the tens digit: 1–2 is Moves 1 to 10, 3–4 is moves 11 to 20, and 5+ is moves 21 and up. I roll a 3, so it’s move 11 to 20. Now I roll a d10 to determine which: 6, so Zosh´s first Ability is the DW barbarian move #16. It says: “Indestructible Hunger: When you take damage you can choose to take 1 ongoing until you sate one of your appetites instead of taking the damage.” I interpret this as follows: Zosh’s passion is fueled when he gets hit. When I choose this option, the referee writes it down and will grant me an appropriate boon of some kind later in the game. This costs 2 Adventure Points. Done.

2. Zosh’s second Ability comes from Zak’s. How convenient, there’s a Barbarian class in there, as well. I roll a d100: 69. It says: “Eye of the Deeply Uncivilized. +2 to checks to intimidate people, -1 to charm or lie to fancies. +2 when your re-roll this thereafter.” Beautiful! I can use this as-is on the Results Table. The ref says it’ll cost 1 Adventure Point. Done.

3. The third ability comes from the Quest rpg Community Creators License. It doesn’t have a barbarian class. But there’s the fighter. So I’m using that one. The Fighter class has five Ability categories. I roll a d10: 9, so it’s the last category – “Body”. That category has 5 different Abilities, so I’m rolling the d10 again (I could also roll a d6 and discard all sixes): a 9 again, so it’s the last Ability: “Defy Death: If you would die from an enemy’s attack, you overcome fate to make a last stand. [4 ap]”. Great, and I can use it straight out of the box, Adventure Point cost included.


This is…

Zosh, a 1st level Lizard Barbarian

  • Indestructible Hunger: Your passion is fueled when you get hit. If you choose so, the referee will grant you an appropriate boon of some kind later in the game. 2 ap.
  • Eye of the Deeply Uncivilized: +2 to checks to intimidate people, -1 to charm or lie to fancies. +2 when your re-roll this thereafter. 1 ap.
  • Defy Death: If you would die from an enemy’s attack, you overcome fate to make a last stand. 4ap.

10 hp
10 ap

One thought on “The Opal Houses of Van-Karal, part II

  1. Hi, Norbert! The good ol’ Yori here. Man, I must confess that this is pure GOLD. This inspires me to solve some minor problems in my fantasy games. Recently I found Tormenta 20, the recent encarnation of a famous Brazilian TTRPG. It’s D&D-like and I wanted to convert it to FKR. My idea is to keep a simple a d20 resolution system and keep the Classes “powers” as is, and they cost Mana Points (MP) as it says in the rulebook. Is a good game, but I don’t the Crunch on my way, so I will play with minimal rules and less numbers and modifiers. So, Opal Houses will be one more source of inspiration for me. Thank you. Peace.


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