an alternative to dice for Electric Bastionland, Into The Odd and Cairn
Replacing the dice
Take a regular pack of playing cards.
Remove the twelve court cards (each Jack, Queen and King).
Introduce one of the jokers (I recommend the guarantee one).
This forms a communal stock that’s drawn from whenever players would roll a dice.
Once a card is drawn, build a communal discard pile; this is shuffled into the stock whenever the joker comes up in play (like in Savage Worlds).
“Rolling” the “dice”
Aces are always low (they always score 1).
The joker is always the optimal value for the task at hand (4, 10, or 14 damage; 1 for Saves).
Instead draw two cards and sum the values (this is almost identical to 2d10, though probabilities skew as the discard pile builds).
Regardless of damage dice, weapons now deal as much damage as a single draw (this means damage is likely to be higher; you might want to impair more attacks).
Impaired and enhanced
If a draw is impaired, instead use the suit as value: spades have 1 point, hearts have 2 halves, clubs have 3 segments, diamonds have 4 edges.
If a draw is enhanced, instead add the suit value to the pip value. (The 10♦️️ is the best card in the pack: ten pips plus four edges for a diamond.)
- Draw seven cards.
- Create three pairs in any order that you choose & assign each score to STR, DEX & WIL.
- Treat the unpaired card as impaired. This value becomes hp.
- Assign equipment as usual.
Check this out with my Mandelbrook adventure for Cairn.