Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Burn it to the Ground, Burn it All


In every group there seems to be a pyromaniac.  He's the guy who has more flasks of oil than healing potions.  A dedicated lot.  Zealots of the flame.  Fire freaks.  Combustible mamas.  Whatever you want to call them, you'll find one in the group somewhere.

We have our pyromaniac, Chris from Clash of Spear on Shield, is ours.  He plays Dante...hmm, I wonder if that's a coincidence?  Anyway.  His guy has kegs of oil.  He doesn't piss around with flasks.  Flasks are for sissies and people who like to drink with their pinky sticking out.  Dante likes to burn things.  Dante likes to burn people.  Dante likes to watch the flame crawl over and envelop and feed.  He's a flame psychopath and I approve.

Because of his passion for the flame and our constant need to look up the flaming oil damage rules I went through a bunch of rulebooks and collected the different rules for systems I could find.  If you know of another rule for another system please put it in the comments so I can add it. And please add any house rules you use in your game. 

Adventurer, Conqueror, King: Dealing 1d8 points of damage for 2 rounds. 
Adventures Dark & Deep Roll d20, 18 or less breaks. If it bursts on the target, 2d6 first round, 1d6 on the second, then burns out. If it bursts on the ground, 1d3 to everyone in 3' radius. All assuming that the vial breaks as above, and if the oil is ignited. Pg 92-93
Ambition & Avarice: 1d8 damage to anyone directly struck and 1d4 splash damage
Bare Bones Fantasy: three damage grades: mild (1D), moderate (2D), or severe (3D). Flammable objects have a 50% chance to catch on fire and continue to cause 1D damage each turn 9(...) Factors such as (...) dousing in oil may modify the roll. (p.33)
Basic Fantasy: Oil does 1d8 for two rounds (p. 49).

Blood & Treasure: Burns for two rounds and deal 1d4 points of fire damage. 
Castles & Crusades: Could not find information about oil damage.

Crypts & Things: Could not find information about oil damage. 
Dragon Age: Could not find information about oil damage.

Dungeons & Dragons, 1st Ed: 2d6 damage the first round, 1d6 damage the second round. 
Dungeons & Dragons, 3rd Ed: 1d6 on a direct hit, 1hp of damage for splash damage. 
Dungeons & Dragons, 4th Ed: Oil burns for 2 rounds and deals 1d3 points of fire damage to each creature in the area. 
Five Ancient Kingdoms: A flask of oil may be set alight or hurled at an opponent with a normal missile attack roll (a hurled flask cannot achieve a "bulls-eye" result). Success indicates the target takes one hit of damage, and an additional hit every round thereafter until the flames are extinguished. A flaming torch may be used as an improvised melee weapon (see Brawling) but will not set a target aflame unless extremely flammable (for example, already covered in oil).

GURPS: If it bursts on the target, 3d burning, then 1d burning per second. If it hits the ground, 1d-1 burning per second to everyone in a 1 yd radius. Either way, it lasts 10d seconds and DR protects at 1/5 (unless sealed). p. 411
HackMaster 4th Ed: Oil causes damage only when it is lit. Sometimes this requires a two-step process, such as when tossing oil into melee with allies. Step one is soaking the target in oil. Step two is hitting him with a torch, candle, open lantern, Fireball or the like. Thus, using flaming oil often requires two successful attacks. Another method is to light a soaked piece of cloth tied to the oil flask. . . Use this method when there are no friendly troops involved or when you dislike your allies. A direct hit from flaming oil burns for two rounds, causing 2d6 points of damage the first round and 1d6 points of damage in the second" Page 137
HackMaster Basic: Oil cannot be used as a weapon. 
Labyrinth Lord: 1d8 for 2 rounds.
Lamentations of the Flame Princess: 1d4 points of damage. If the damage roll is 4, make a save vs. breath weapon or take 1d4 more damage on next action. If that roll is a 4 as well, character is engulfed in flame, taking 1d8 damage per round. (p. 61)
Neoclassical Geek RevivalCould not find information about oil damage. 
OSRIC: "A mummy is susceptible to fire as follows: a hit from a torch will deal 1d3 hp damage, a flask of burning oil causes 1d8 hp on the first round and 2d8 hp on the second round, and magical fires deal +1 for each die of damage." (p248 OSRIC - A5 2013 Version)
Pathfinder: Oil burns for 2 rounds and deal 1d3 damage to those within the area.
Swords & Wizardry Complete: 1d4 damage on a successful hit, and 1 more point of damage per round for the next 2 rounds.
Swords & Wizardry Core: see S&W Complete
Tunnels & Trolls: Could not find information about oil damage.
As you can see there are a lot of systems I couldn't find the damage or it there was a ruling on using oil.  If you know it let me know.  One of the more surprising things I found was how HackMaster didn't allow it.  The game that has 142 different fireball spells.  All of a sudden wanted to go realistic with the oil.  Thought that was a bit amusing.  The deadliest is still AD&D.  Devastating weapon. 

These are all the systems I had available on my shelf.  I'm not sure which version of T&T I have.  So if you play and know the rule for another system let me know.  I want to be the definitive place where you can whip a flask of oil and know what to expect.

35 comments:

  1. Labyrinth Lord p.54

    1d8 damage for 2 rounds

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  2. GURPS is on p. 411: if it bursts on the target, 3d burning, then 1d burning per second. If it hits the ground, 1d-1 burning per second to everyone in a 1 yd radius. Either way, it lasts 10d seconds and DR protects at 1/5 (unless sealed). This is because "oil flasks" in GURPS are Greek fire bombs, since lamp oil doesn't burn like that in actuality. There are other fiddly details, but mainly about things like what happens if you fall while carrying them, or how an enemy can target them on your belt.

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    1. Adventures Dark and Deep is on the Ranged Weapon table on p. 92-3: roll d20, 18 or less breaks. If it bursts on the target, 2d6 first round, 1d6 on the second, then burns out. If it bursts on the ground, 1d3 to everyone in 3' radius. All assuming that the vial breaks as above, and if the oil is ignited.

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    2. Or, in more simplified form:

      GURPS: 3d burning, then 1d burning per second for 10d seconds.

      Adventures Dark and Deep: 2d6 damage the first round, 1d6 damage the second round.

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    3. Excellent work. I looked all over in Adventures Dark & Deep. Sometimes find the oil rules is a hunt. They don't seem to have a standard spot in the books.

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    4. As an aside, that "18 or less" in the Adventures Dark and Deep description is based on the saving throw vs. crushing blow for an oil flask ("vial" in AD&D1E), which is 19.

      There are no rules for flaming oil in Swordbearer. The same goes for Fantasy Gaming and also Fantasy Wargaming.

      I couldn't find rules for flaming oil in Hârnmaster, Spears of the Dawn, or Dragons at Dawn, though I wouldn't guarantee they aren't in there.

      What surprises me is that I can't find flaming oil in the Palladium RPG (though, mine is the first printing, and I understand that there were some changes in the "Revised" edition).

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    5. A couple more:

      Reign has no rules that I could find for flaming oil. Neither does The Arcanum, which is kinda surprising given that game's focus on alchemy. The Arcanum is basically a variant of D&D, though, so you could use the Labyrinth Lord rules (or any other D&D version) with no problems.

      Chivalry & Sorcery (2nd edition), similar to GURPS, assumes that "flaming oil" means "naphtha bomb", and has: if the flask hits, roll d6. 1-3 breaks. If it doesn't break, but is underfoot, roll again (presumably once each combat turn) to see if it is kicked/stomped open. A burst flask covers an area 5' by 5', and burns for 1d3 combat turns, doing 1d10 damage each combat turn.

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  3. None of these is very "realistic". Course when was it ever?
    Back in Jr. High we had a campaign the devolved into a Fafhrd & Grey Mouser urban campaign (DM & two players). So we started robbing places. As a barbarian (from The Dragon) I was the back-up and decoy for the thief. Initially my guy was painted multiple colors, naked and would run around causing as much chaos as possible. After he leveled up a couple of times, he changed tactics.

    Since he had enough hit points, he'd pour a flask of oil over himself and set it on fire. And then run around causing chaos. He was never at risk, and we had a friendly cleric who would heal him for a cut of...err a donation to his church. It was nonsensical, but fun.

    As for pyro-man-next time he sets off a trap, have it polymorph him into Origami-man. Highly flammable.

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  4. Hackmaster 4e, Page 137:
    "Oil causes damage only when it is lit. Sometimes this requires a two-step process, such as when tossing oil into melee with allies. Step one is soaking the target in oil. Step two is hitting him with a torch, candle, open lantern, Fireball or the like. Thus, using flaming oil often requires two successful attacks. Another method is to light a soaked piece of cloth tied to the oil flask. . . Use this method when there are no friendly troops involved or when you dislike your allies. A direct hit from flaming oil burns for two rounds, causing 2d6 points of damage the first round and 1d6 points of damage in the second"

    It what world is Hackmaster not a superior game, one in which all considerations are taken into account? It is the single most enjoyable, most imaginative game ever created!

    Of course oil can be used as a weapon!

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    1. Also, Because Hackmaster uses exploding dice, It in fact is the most deadly!

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    2. I stand corrected, Hackmaster is the most deadly. Exploding dice! I wonder how much damage they do?

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  5. Five Ancient Kingdoms (Volume 1, page 31):

    Fire: a flask of oil may be set alight or hurled at an opponent with a normal missile attack roll (a hurled flask cannot achieve a "bulls-eye" result). Success indicates the target takes one hit of damage, and an additional hit every round thereafter until the flames are extinguished. A flaming torch may be used as an improvised melee weapon (see Brawling) but will not set a target aflame unless extremely flammable (for example, already covered in oil).

    5AK has different rules for fire in naval combat, which might be helpful if Dante decides to travel abroad.
    ; )

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    1. I'm targeting to get a copy of 5AK within the next couple of weeks. Save me a copy.

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  6. Only OSRIC flaming oil info I could find was this:

    "A mummy is susceptible to fire as follows: a hit from a torch will deal 1d3 hp damage, a flask of burning oil causes 1d8 hp on the first round and 2d8 hp on the second round, and magical fires deal +1 for each die of damage."

    (p248 OSRIC - A5 2013 Version)

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    1. Thanks. I'm not sure which version I have.

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  7. Dante just told me he's glad to be famous for something. ;)

    A couple of others that didn't appear to be on the list (unless I missed them)

    Basic Fantasy RPG: there burning oil does 1d8 for two rounds (p. 49).

    Bare Bones Fantasy: three damage grades: mild (1D), moderate (2D), or severe (3D). Flammable objects have a 50% chance to catch on fire and continue to cause 1D damage each turn 9(...) Factors such as (...) dousing in oil may modify the roll. (p.33)

    Lamentations of the Flame Princess: 1d4 points of damage. If the damage roll is 4, make a save vs. breath weapon or take 1d4 more damage on next action. If that roll is a 4 as well, character is engulfed in flame, taking 1d8 damage per round. (p. 61)

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    1. Thanks for these. I actually have Basic Fantasy coming to me in mail today! And the other two I have, but so many systems and I got rulebook fatigue looking through them.

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  8. I'm sorry to say that I'm that guy in our group :)

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    1. Nothing to apologize for Billy. Burn it hot and often, just leave the tavern intact.

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  9. Wow you guys did your homework. I know we are missing a couple systems so keep the info coming.

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  10. Blueholme: The To Hit roll is modified by the size of the target, not the AC. The "ignition" roll is modified in similar fashion.

    Damage is determined as follows: Oil thrown in this manner (and ignited) will cause 1d8 damage at the end of the first round and 2d8 at the end of the second; it burns out or is put out by the third round.

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    1. I actually really like this rule, but I would drop a bit.

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    2. I like the "to hit" aspect of it, not the damage. Way too much.

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  11. *The Fantasy Trip*: flaming oil does 4 hits on every one in the target hex, and 2 on every person in an adjacent hex. Armor stops hits normally. If you're in the target hex, make a 4d DX roll to avoid getting soaked with flaming oil. If you're soaked with flaming oil, you take 4 every turn for a minute (12 turns total), or until put out. Armor doesn't stop these hits.

    The flaming oil burns in the hex for a minute. If anyone walks through, they take 2 hits. If they stop in the hex, they take 4.

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  12. Well, it seems like most of the players in my regular group have varying degrees of pyromania! Well, at least their CHARACTERS are pyros! ;-) Yes, indeed, they have a long and storied history of setting structures ablaze! The most memorable structure fire was when they set a tannery on fire. That burned quite nicely...

    Oh, and monsters. Setting monsters on fire is another favored passtime for them, but not usually anything that's too humanoid. Memorable moment: one player filled a waterskin with lamp oil and tried to use it as a makeshift flamethrower against some giant spiders. He made the mistake of squirting flaming oil straight up over his head, trying to hit a spider crawling on the ceiling above him...

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  13. I usually use the following, but it depends on situation.

    You hit 1d6 people for 7 damage minus the amount of people you hit.

    Roll a one, one guy got smacked for 6 damage, roll a 6 and a little bit of oil hits 6 people for 1 damage.

    But otherwise it is just the fire rule. being on fire deals 1d6 damage a round. It goes out on a 1, and adds an extra die on a 6.

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  14. AAAARGGGG!!! Oil doesn't burn like that. They aren't flasks of GASOLINE. To loosely quote Edna Mode, "No flasks".

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  15. Ah, but what about FANTASY oil?! ;-)

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  16. Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay 1e

    Incendiaries (Molotov cocktails) will burn for d4 rounds after it is ignited. Fire damage is a strength 3 hit, biut rolling a d4 for damage. (D4+3 damage each round.)

    If a 4 is rolled, there is a 10% chance of additional damage. If additional damage occurs, keep rolling the d4 until you roll something other than a 4.

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  17. Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay 2e

    Generally speaking, fires range from Damage 1 (a small campfire) to Damage 10 (a raging inferno). The GM should determine the damaged based on the fire's size and ferocity. If a character is exposed to the same fire source for two or more consecutive rounds, he must make and Agility Test each round or catch on fire. Once blazing, a character loses 1d10 Wounds (with no reduction for armour or Toughness Bonus) each round until the fire is extinguished.

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  18. Well Jeremy that depends on if your 200 BCE polytheistic culture with 15th century technology (except missing 300 years worth of guns), with available magic, and a mid 20th century economic model saddled with an 8th century political system has gasoline or if they still use olive oil for burning.

    I think flasks of Kerosene makes for a more fun dungeon experience personally.

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    1. Though I agree with the basic sentiment, polytheism doesn't have an expiration date in history. There are a number of polytheist cultures in the modern world, for instance (Japan, India, Haiti, Iceland, and so on).

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  19. Heroes & Other Worlds:
    1d6 Damage per turn, armor does not protect. Lasts 12 turns.
    Passing though, roll 1d6, 1 = something flammable catches on fire on them.

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  20. These are the house rules I use in my OD&D game:

    Burning Oil

    Burning oil does 1d6 fire damage and requires the target to make a saving throw. On success, the fire goes out and will do no more damage. On failure, the fire keeps burning and will do another 1d6 damage (and require another saving throw) during the following round (repeat this procedure every round until the fire is extinguished). In addition to the per-round saving throw, a burning creature may opt to spend their turn trying to put out the fire (this grants an additional saving throw). Flasks of oil may be lit beforehand and then thrown (this takes two actions, one for prep and one for throwing) or thrown unlit and then ignited by a separate action (such as a thrown torch), requiring a second attack roll. In either case, the two actions may be taken by separate characters if situationally appropriate. A natural attack roll of 1 indicates that the attacker has fumbled and doused themselves in oil instead (if this oil is already burning, follow standard procedure as outlined above). A flask of oil is significant for encumbrance purposes.

    http://www.necropraxis.com/2013/08/02/house-rules/#burning-oil

    Also, nice work on this compilation.

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