Kits for BX and Earlier Editions

Well, why not? This idea popped into my head while listening to a podcast. I’m not sure which one. I think THAC0’s Hammer. I remember the kits of Second Edition. In case you don’t here’s the low down.
Basically, kits were specializations for each class. Sounds pretty simple, right? Well, TSR did go kind of overboard with kits for every class and some of them were overpowered while others were just plain meh. What I’m thinking here is something much more simple and expands on the idea of sub-classes.
First, we start with the four basic classes; Fighter, Cleric, Magic-User and Thief. Then we apply the “kit” concept to make the “Advanced” classes. Now, I did talk about something similar in one of the early episodes of Playing It Wrong where I talked about Class Vs Job. And I guess this expands on this concept. To apply this, it’s a game of give and take. The base class has to lose something in order to gain some other special ability.
Let’s look at the Fighter. OK, the class as written is pretty boring. Most hit points. Best Armor and best To-Progression. That’s it. Most retroclones and some house rules give the Fighter something extra beyond the fore mentioned. For my games, I use the “Chop While Drop” rule and the “Shattered Shield” rules as extras for the fighter. So for the Fighter kits, the character losses those two abilities. For Kits, we’ll start off with the two most common. Ranger and Paladin.
Rangers are know for Tracking, Survival, being a badass (in the old school games), some spell casting at high level, and doing extra damage to some foes. For this exercise, we’ll focus on the Tracking/Survival and extra damage. Let’s give the Ranger a new “skill” called Hunter and it’s rated at 4 in 6. Use this for tracking, foraging, and even stealth check’s if you want. Then like some versions, then they also get a damage bonus equal to half their level against goblinoids. And there you go.
I’m not going through every class in this post. This is just a sample/proof of concept for the idea. What do you think?

3 thoughts on “Kits for BX and Earlier Editions”

  1. I love it. I have been thinking of doing soemthing like this for the B/Xgame I have been planning… starting out with basic classes, but adding “subclasses” as we go.

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