Multiclassing in Microlite75?

Multiclassing was possible in 1970s versions of D&D, at least for demi-humans. Human could dual class in AD&D1e. Microlite75 does not yet have any rules for multiple classes, either for demi-humans or for humans. This is because I can’t decide exactly how I want to handle it. Here are some of the major possibilities. I’d love to have comments on them:

OPTION 1: Demi-humans can start with multiple classes. They advance in all classes at the same time. They need XP equal to the total of XP needed for the next level in each of their classes to advance. The classes they can multiclass in vary with race (that is, they add the Experience base of all their classes together). Humans cannot multiclass, but may switch classes once. They start at first level in their new class, but keep the abilities, HP, etc. of their old class. They can never gain levels in their old class again. This is similar to how it was done in 1e.

OPTION 2: All races can start with multiple classes. They advance in all classes at the same time. They need XP equal to the total of XP needed for the next level in each of their classes to advance (plus a penalty for multiclassing). That is, they would add the experience base of each of their classes together and then increase it by 5 if they have 2 classes and by 15 if they have three classes.

OPTION 3: Do it like 3.x, let people switch classes at will at any level change. This would be complex as the experience base varies with class, but it could be done. While 3.x fans might love this, would probably be more complex than it was worth as there is no way I will switch to a single XP advancement rate for all classes. Worse, it would have all the problems multiclassing does in 3.x — at least if the DM doesn’t ride herd on it.

OPTION 4: No multiclassing, but have a system for custom-designed character classes similar to onr one in Dragon for BECMI D&D or the improved version published in OD&DITIES #7. This would probably be more trouble than it was worth. Not because it would be hard to design, but because it would be a min-maxer’s wet dream.

OPTION 5: Just don’t bother with multiclassing.

OPTION 6: I’m open to other ideas.

Comments and opinions are welcome. I’ve been thinking about this for months and am not really any closer to making a decision than I was when I started.

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5 Responses

  1. Talysman says:

    How about Option 3A? Characters can switch classes at any level change, but use the highest experience base of all classes acquired. Total levels for all classes currently acquired and multiply by the experience base to get the cost of the next level earned.

    This allows the flexibility of Option 3, but with simpler experience calculations, at the cost of higher advancement costs.

  2. Randall says:

    Talysman — I'm still not sure I want the 3.x multiclassing method in M75, but if I were to use it, your XP method would work great. It's far more simple than anything I had thought of and simple is good. Thanks!

  3. My vote: no multiclassing. Maybe the single-switch dual-class.

    If you want to play a spellsword (a la Jeff Talanian's _Astounding Swordplay and Spellcraft_ or whatever the acronym resolves to), then design a new class which is a slightly crappier fighter than a fighter, a slightly crappier MU than an MU, and requires slightly more XP than either to advance.

    3E-like multiclassing only works if there's a single consistent and coherent advancement formula, and if the classes are inherently pretty balanced. It's that last thing that fell apart in 3E, and I think it's too damn hard to be worth attempting.

  4. anarchist says:

    If characters start at level 1 of several classes, you'd have to decide what that meant for Hit Dice:

    i) They start with several Hit Dice.
    ii) They start with the average of the Hit Dice they'd get from each class.
    iii) They start with 1 Hit Dice, and add 1 every time they advance in any class.

    This comes from my experience trying to work out the OD&D elf. It turned out that there were lots of interpretations of the rule.

  5. Although both multi-classing (elves) and dual-classing (changing character class) appeared in Men & Magic (more or less), I’m inclined to think they ought to be left out of a microlight game & left to add-on rules.