Has anyone tried flat damage instead of rolling dice at high levels?


Homebrew and House Rules


I've been in a high-level mythic game for a very long time and I think we spend most of our sessions rolling damage for spells and attacks anymore. And, yes, we are using dice apps for pretty much anything with more than 10 dice. I've floated the idea of switching to flat damage and I think the last couple sessions convinced me to push for it. Wondering if anyone has tried that in practice. Especially since at high levels, weapon damage rolls barely matter from all their bonus, and spells are more subject to the law of averages. Plus, we're already using single attack rolls from Unchained for our martials so we can give them a similar treatment.

So I'm think if, say, a spell does XdY, then in the interest of pacing the formula for damage becomes X * ((Y/2) + 1), as if you rolled the median rounded up for that die. So mythic disintegrate, for example, would turn from 60d6 to 60 * 4 = 240. This is pretty similar to how 13th Age ended up handling enemy damage.

Like I said, curious if anyone else has tried this or something like this. In any RPG that works like this. Thanks.


If the number of dice, you are rolling is pretty high this might save some time. I would probably not bother with it if you are not rolling at least 10 dice. Once you hit that many dice the chance of deviating from the average is pretty slim. If you are going to do this, use the actual average not the median and do not round off. So, the 60d6 would be 210 not 240. Rounding up will substantially increase the amount of damage a spell caster will do. Spell casters are already powerful enough that the last thing they need is a power boost. In your example the damage is 30 points above average. If you use the empower metamagic feat the extra damage jumps up to an extra 45 points above what the average empowered damage is.

The one thing that I have seen is that a lot of players like rolling huge amounts of dice. For some people this is part of the fun of gaming. Unless the game is being bogged down you may be fixing something that is not really a problem. Sometimes though a player will roll either incredibly good or really bad. Those are often the things that get remembered about the game long after they happen. This system will eliminate those.


There are ways to force average or max rolls. So unless there is an issue with the amount of dice being rolled (which there doesn't seem like there is) changing it for the sake of changing it can feel pretty bad.

Also for average the formula is X*((Y+1)/2) because the average of a dice is half way between the two medians. Adding +1 after getting the median has the effect of skewing the values towards the high side, just like not adding 1 would skew the values towards the low side. What is the difference?

Skew high: 60*((6/2)+1)=60*(3+1)=60*4=240
Skew low: 60*(6/2) = 60*3=180
Average: 60*((6+1)/2)=60*(7/2)=60*3.5=210.

For reference: (180+240)/2 = 210.


I pretty much use this method on any of the enemies I use as a GM. I've also built an arcanist that uses Orderly Casting just so I am not bothered to roll damage for them any more. Just revised the average damage on each level up and let it fly.


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You can go to Google search and type in "roll 18d6" or "roll 20d10" and it will roll for you.


You can split the difference by averaging most of the dice, then rolling the last one or 2. Average dice are usually half max +1. D10 or more are half +2. Since epic weapons might be bigger than a D20, bigger than that are half +3. Thus the giga slayer spell might be D percentiles per level at ground zero, but most of the damage dice are 53 points, before other adjustments. Yeah, it still skews toward the high side so the GM could rule one less plus, but then it's not keeping up with hit dice.


In Stormbringer, Agents of Law did not roll for weapon damage as it was always the maximum, Chaos had been banished.

For the simple average of NdX die use N*((X+1)/2) then round (down).
You can do the average, 72-80% of the maximum, and the maximum.

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