Ran my first ICRPG game for 3 players. I used Roll20 as we all live in different states. The first dungeon I ever DMed was the intro dungeon in the red box D&D Basic Set in 1983. I decided it was time to run it again and converted it to ICRPG, which was super easy. I made sure to include timers, effort items and as many features as possible.
The players pointed out what the game was missing a few times, and I can’t blame them. I dismissed ICRPG after I read through it the first time since it seemed unfinished. It was only after I thought about those ideas and watched some YouTube videos did I see the light.
I did want money in my game, just not the hassle of loose change. Following some ideas I found in this forum I went with “bags of gold”. Each bag is worth about 100gp. You might find half a bag or some other fraction, but we are not keeping track of coins. I pointed out the first time they killed some giant rats that they found 10 silver and 100 copper asked if someone wants to pick it up and keep track of it, or just skip all that and get a bag of coins later on? Nobody wanted to keep track of the silver. A rust monster ate the priest’s mace so he needed another one. He had 2 bags of gold at the end and maces cost 5 gold coins. By this time the players were on board so the priest getting a mace was a quick side comment and no math was needed.
The players pointed out other items “missing” from the game as we played. My character has no languages! When do I get skills? After talking we agreed there was no point in writing down the obvious things. If it is not obvious it is an ability, so put your obscure language or special skill there.
Some of the players were also not fans of one target number for everything at first but during play it seemed to work well. By making things Easy or Hard the rolls did not all feel the same. If we look at the original D&D stats the To Hit needed for the rats, skeletons, goblins and rust monster are 10, 10, 11 and 15. So having a target of 10 and making the rust monster Hard to hit gives just about the same result with less stuff to keep track of and look up. I am not sure the players appreciated how nice that was but as the GM I really did. I have dyscalculia (hard to keep numbers in my brain) so I rely heavily on notes and refer to them constantly. Having less numbers to worry about let me spend more time describing the scene and interacting with the players.
I did have one issue when converting HP to Hearts. In the adventure as written the sample fighter had 8 HP, rats 2 HP, skeletons 4 HP and goblins 5 HP. I gave the rats 1 HP. I pulled the Skeletons from the ICRPG Manual so they have 1 Heart. I used the Gerblin Traitors stats for the Goblins, giving 1 Heart each. The players defeated them but it was more of a struggle than I had expected forcing us to use the Death rules a few times. If I run it again I will give the skeletons and goblins each a Half-Heart, so 5 HP. It seems like a big jump from 1 HP to 1 Heart and I really feel we need something in between.
Overall the players liked the ruleset. As the GM I really liked the ruleset and look forward to the rest of the campaign. There will be one more simple dungeon so we can work the bugs out of the system and characters and then I will unleash the Heckoon Carapace.