Home Forums General General Do You Count the + and the –

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    Avatar photoAlvin Molethrottler

    When a game mechanic has both players rolling dice against a list of modifiers, some of which are “+” and some of which are “-“, do you just convert one player’s “-” into the other guy’s “+” so that only one player gets his die throw modified?

    I ask this because it happened to me on Saturday while playing Age of Eagles with some friends. An example being: in a melee I ended up with a -2 to my d10 throw whilst my opponent had a +3 to his, the umpire ruled that this meant my opponent threw his die at +5 and that my die throw was unmodified (for the record the result of melee is determined by the difference between the two scores). Something about this irked me.

    I’m pretty sure this skews the result in some way but I’m not mathematically savvy enough to figure out how. I briefly brought this up during the game but was roundly assured that the end result was not affected at all. Nevertheless, and at the risk of looking foolish, I thought I’d ask here about the subject.

    Avatar photoMike

    Using mods on each roll:

    You roll a
    1 which is really -1
    5 which is really 3
    10 which is really 8

    he rolls a
    1 which is really 4
    5 which is really 8
    10 which is really 13

    so if you both roll a 5 then you get a 3 and he gets a 8, the difference is 5

    With just him adding +5:

    if you both roll a 5, you get 5 he gets 10, the difference is 5.

    seems legit?

    However, either way, I would not do it like that, as it does feel like you are being robbed of some ‘action’.

    Avatar photoirishserb

    It would annoy me a little.  Probably was just easier for the GM to keep straight in his mind. I’ve played in games where GMs have done similar things with 2D12 systems, and have skewed the results for “save” rolls.  Thus, I prefer that they just leave it alone, and don’t risk “skewing” things up.

    Avatar photokyoteblue


    Avatar photoCerdic
    Avatar photoJohn D Salt

    I’m pretty sure this skews the result in some way but I’m not mathematically savvy enough to figure out how.

    Not for addition and subtraction it doesn’t, because of the way addition and subtraction work. You’re just taking steps up and down the number line.

    Quite different for multiplication and division, though, so don’t try this in DBA. A -1 for the other guy is worth more than a +1 for you in a DBA-like system where doubling the enemy’s score does something dreadful to him.

    All the best,


    Avatar photoMr. Average

    Personally, I just dislike the psychological effect of doubling down one player instead of giving both their DRMs. It feels like more attention going to one player than the other, even if mathematically it’s a wash.

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