Hexatome - An Introduction

This is version 0.2 of Hexatome, the author's gift to the role playing community. Have fun with it.

What It Is [Edit]

Hexatome is a role playing rules system, that is, it provides a set of rules needed to play role playing games. By role playing game standards Hextome's framework may be regarded as lean and sleek comprehending only those rules needed to smoothly run the game. Its rules aim at the players' freedom rather than complexity, but may be easily extended and adapted to specific personal needs.

The manual you just started to read contains everything you need use Hexatome - well, almost everything. You still need some players to share the fun with, some sheets of paper and some pens or pencils. Hexatome fits into the category of pen & paper role playing games, that is, although almost the whole game takes place in the players' imagination they will often find it useful to take down some notes which may be referred to at a later date. The character sheet, too, exists in the form of a sheet of paper (yet another prerequisite: you probably also need a printer connected to a computer system to print out the provided character sheet, but you could also redraw it manually, if necessary) and is written onto.

Last, but not least, you need some dice. Hexatome uses ordinary six-sided dice which can be obtained in packs in almost any toy shop or even malls for the price of a loaf of bread. Imagine all the fun you'd have, if you refrained from buying the bread and instead took the dice - only once, since the dice won't decay in decates, whereas the bread won't be edible in just a few days. However, particularly while role playing, an empty stomach usually turns out to be quite a handicap and that's where a loaf of bread would come in handily. Thus, those who can afford both - the dice and the bread - will most probably experience most fun.

As you will see the number of six plays quite important a role in the realm of the Hexatome rule system. hexa- is Greek and refers to things that have to do with the number of six. Six dice with six sides each will do for the game, if shared among the players. Some players, however, may prefer to own their own set of dice to avoid handing them over to other players all the time.

It should be remarked that role playing games can also be played without using dice at all. Indeed, Hexatome with its light weight set of rules does not suffer too much, if stripped of its dice rules altogether. But, and that's what most players seem to prefer, dice can also help to spice up the game with a certain factor of unexpected effects. On the other hand, you should never underestimate the creativity and capability of the human mind to judge even fictional situations by employing common sense. Clinging to dice too rigorously may easily ruin your game. Not everything should be codified by rolling dice.

What It Is Not [Edit]

Hexatome is a mere role playing game rule system and as such does not provide any background or setting for your game. What seems to appear as a lack of an essential part of the game at the first glance turns out to be intentional. The setting, indeed, may be considered as one of the essential parts of the game, but Hexatome still does not provide one. The reason is that Hexatome should be flexible enough to be combined with any setting, as long as it meets certain prerequisites which will become clear as soon as you have read the first sections of the rules.

Please note also that Hexatome does not provide some kind of "amusement guaranty". Hexatome is free. You may try it out for free. If you like it, all the better. If you do not like it, leave it alone. You do not incur any debts when trying it out. If, eventually, you find out that it does not please you you could still reuse your brand new set of dice to play Scrabble.

Characters [Edit]

Player and non player characters often consist of numerous numbers and values which is also the case in Hexatome and which will be dealt with in the next section. Before we dive headlong into the numbers a few words should be spent on the essence of characters.

A character represents a player's self within the boundaries of the game. During the game the player plays the character as an actor would play his role. He is responsible for the character's appearance, his attitude and his actions. A good actor lives in his character and knows his behaviour. It does not take him much time to figure out what to do even in critical circumstances of the plot. The actions come by themselves. Of course, not all players are equally good in acting their roles, not all players have the same experience and knowledge. But it cannot be overemphasized what a player's dedication to his character can add to the game as a whole.

A player should at least know about her character's motivation, be it obvious or hidden to the world around her. Her demeanour shown to the world around her does not necessarily reflect her true feelings and aims. People may appear shy and helpless while secretly conspiring against others. Then, helpless people often try to mask their true nature by fierce and aggressive behaviour to protect themselves against a harsh environment.

She needs to know about her past and preferences, the former often determining or influencing the latter. A person without a past is like a blank sheet - she has nothing to refer to and nothing to cling to. Although it permits a quick game start if players do not have to think about their character's past it may sooner or later turn out to hamper the game, in particular, if they try to determine decisions which have to be made according to one's past.

Note also that it is so much easier to pour a character into numbers after a player has drawn at least a rough outline of her character's personality. Having an image of the trench coat dressed, quick fingered, tough guy in mind who nervoursly inhales the blue smoke of his cigarettes in night bars as well as the shy college girl turning out to be the misjudged ugly beauty may both, for instance, serve as well known stereotypes of imaginable characters. Both of them, however, would still need a lot of fine tuning to be usable in the game.

To avoid complications and enviousness by other players a player should always present his character to the game master before the game session starts. Since the game master alone knows of all secrets and places the players are going to be thrown into he can often judge the player's intentions best. Nevertheless there should always be room for discussions and compromises, because everyone wants to be happy at last.

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