I am making a game, but finding players to delve into something completely new on the internet is kinda hard, so, I thought I'd try testing specific mechanics in a more familiar system instead.
I figure the game story will revolve around explorers and treasure hunters exploring a massive metal ship that recently crashed. It isn't technology, but rather a magic ship. It would be several towns have grown around the crash as brave folks venture inside.
The inside is basically random dungeon, but there is some story elements involved. How closely the players interact with that story is up to them.
I figure on testing out only one or two of my mechanics at a time. Pathfinder is roughly compatible with my game, so swapping out a few mechanics will usually be simple.
I will leave it to interested persons to pick which mechanics to test out first.
The big one to test, and that requires the most adjustment, is the health and armor system. Basically, it is a fort save with ever increasing penalties, a failure means you gain a wound of some sort (like being lamed, or losing a limb), the severity of the wound depends on weapon penetrating value (piercing damage penetrates further than bludgeoning for example). Armor mitigates damage received and the reduces the severity of wounds received.
Some simpler to implement houserules,
Spellcasting, instead of slots, there is a strain mechanic. Casting a spell requires a strain roll. The more powerful the spell, the more likely to fail. Each time you fail, you reduce the power you can channel at once, and increase the chance you will fail further strain checks. Eventually strain hits zero and you can't cast any spells at all. This basically lets you cast tiny spells all day but high powered spells will quickly drain you dry. There are no hard limits on how many spells you can cast, but rather as you cast spells you start to inhibit how much power you can wield for any one spell, and drawing on too much power and your magic can fail all together.
There is a fatigue mechanic, basically like spellcasting, except applies to physical abilities and prowess, such as stunning fist. It penalizes physical skills once you get reduced enough. Combat maneuvers require fatigue checks as do certain combat abilities. Should be fine going through a fight or three, but spells that cause fatigue or exhaustion, (or other things, like rage) will certainly have a different impact. Also, this becomes a soft limit on things like stunning fist, instead of a hard cap. Basically, you can continue making such attempts as long as you like, but not only do you start to take penalties after a while, but eventually you start running the risk of falling unconcious.
The loot system. Basically you have Loot. Loot is the undefined lesser stuff you find in dungeons. Things like jewelry, spoons, bowls, clothes, crafting materials, etc. You don't track the specific items, just the value, quality, and weight. Quality determines the lowest quality stuff you can find in your loot. For example, with low quality loot, you pick up everything that isn't nailed down, thus if you need, you can make a search check to find a cheap mundane item in your loot, such as a pot or bowl, if you need something of that sort. If you stick with high quality loot however, you pick up only the pretty stuff, thus you gain less stuff, but you get all the high value stuff. High quality loot however lacks any of the cheap stuff you may want, such as string, pots, flint and steel, etc.
Another mechanic to try is that players roll all the dice related to various things. Player casters roll against the npc static save scores. And other similar things.
I have other mechanics if there is any pathfinder mechanic you'd like to try an alternative for.
Also, I will be using the 3d6 alternative to a d20. My system uses a bell curve so I want to preserve that. A really minor issue for a d20 game. I'll double check the pf version, though I doubt they would change it much from unearthed arcana.