House Rules

The baseline rules are Tunnels & Trolls, 5th edition. The publisher, Flying Buffalo, Inc., has kindly made a “lite edition” available online. The rules are greatly reduced, but more than enough to play with. In fact, I hope to run the game in such a way that players won’t need to consult the rules, except for spell use.

I am hoping to run the game with a strong “old school” feel. Part of old school playing, is changing the rules. Here are the notable changes.


The attributes for the game will be the default set for 5th edition:

Speed will default to Dexterity, and not be rolled separately.

Because I think that a powerful spellcasters should be built more like Gandalf than Conan, spellcasters will burn Charisma to power their spells instead of Strength. Along the same line of thought, Merlin shouldn’t be more spry than a ballerina, so the Minimum Dexterity score for spells is replaced by a Minimum Luck score.

Character Types (Classes)

The following character types are permitted in the game:

WeaponsAnyAny, but Damage is capped at 2d+3Any
Armor2× ProtectionNormal2× Protection
Personal Adds+LevelNormal+Warrior Level
Spell UseNoYesYes
Level AttributesStrength, DexterityIntelligence, CharismaTrack each class separately.
XP to Raise Attributes10× current attribute level10× current attribute level20× current attribute level
NotesThis is everyone who can’t cast spells. If you want a “thief”, pick warrior and act like a thief. If you want a “monk” pick warrior and act like a monk.This is the person who can cast spells, but not that great at fighting. Unlike the rules as written, they can use any weapon, but the damage will be capped as noted.This is the person who can both cast spells and fight. Their level is tracked separately for Warrior and Wizard. Advance more slowly than other types.

Kindred (Race)

For now, at least, the Barony is only open to human PCs.


Out of respect for the publisher’s copyright and a desire to have the equipment listing free to all players, the “official” T&T equipment listing will not be used. Instead, we will use Equipment Emporium: A Basic Fantasy Supplement. It is available as a free download from the Basic Fantasy downloads page (search for the word “Emporium” on that page to find it). In order to make it T&T compatible, the following changes have to be made to that document:

Weapon Damage

Basic Fantasy
Tunnels & Trolls

Missile Weapons

Missile weapon ranges are as given in Basic Fantasy, and translate to the following Dex saves:

Range Level Save Needed
Short L2
Medium L3
Long L4

Armor Values

Armor is exactly as stated, except the T&T armor value will be 11 less than the AC given in the Basic Fantasy text. Thus in Basic Fantasy, Chain-mail has an AC of 15, so we would treat it as providing 4 points of protection per round. A Warrior would get 8 points of protection from it.

Shields protect as stated. So the carrying a buckler with your chain mail will protect you from 5 points round from a sword, but only 4 from an arrow.


Here and there are other game-specific references that will be adjudicated as needed.


Spite Damage & Armor Ablation

Any time a “6” comes up on the damage dice, this is “spite damage”. It is automatic damage--and it applies even if the player that rolled the 6 was on the losing side. Unlike normal damage, however, spite damage comes from your armor first; if you have no armor protection, then it comes from your constitution like regular damage.

Armor reduction lasts until the armor is repaired by an armorer, at a cost proportional to the damage taken compared to the total protection remaining (thus it can cost more to repair armor than to simply replace it). PCs with the appropriate Talent and an Armor Patch Kit (from the price list) can repair 1 point of armor in 10 minute. A single patch kit will repair up to 10 points.

Magic armor repairs itself at the rate of 1 point per game turn (not combat turn). Magic armor that is destroyed (i.e. has its protection reduced to 0 or lower) can not repair itself.