The more I play, the bigger hipster I become. I don't like it, but there it is. I'm a snob, and the kind of snob I am is the kind that likes it the way it was in the Old Days. Or, at least how we modern folk perceive it was played in the Old Days.
In my case, I like the idea of limiting everyone to d6s and d20s. That's all you really need. In a way, this is a follow-up post from the last one where I groused about the puny d4 hit points a starting Magic-User gets. That complaint is part of a larger one I guess.
(I'm going to show you the tables I use for character level progression in my game, Mythical Journeys. The game assumes that people are going to use all their dice. But I'll also include a column for how many dice to roll when you are only using d6s.)
Using Six-Siders For Hit Dice:
For a little while at the very beginning of this hobby, the players only used six-sided dice for Hit Dice, rather than the more glamorous array we use today. Some say it's because those kinds of dice weren't much available back then. But believe it or not, there are good reasons to use only six-siders for these kinds of rolls.
The first reason is that there is symmetry between the different classes. Using only d6s means you can clearly see that, for instance, a level 5 Magic-User is about as tough as a level 3 Fighting-Man, because each has the same number of hit dice.
The second reason is that the player-characters can then use the same Attack Matrix as the monsters do. No longer do you need a different chart for PCs and their allies. Again, you can see how Hit Dice relate precisely to attack ability.
A third, less-obvious reason is that characters with more full hit dice (like Fighting-Men and Dwarves) gain more HP advantage from a high Constitution over time, which maintains balance between the classes a little better. These three reasons please some players and referees.
But there is a downside.
First, PCs will have on average slightly fewer Hit Points than when you use the several polyhedral dice. It only comes out to about one-half hit point per experience level, but it's worth noting.
Second, part of the fun is rolling the many fun dice. People like dice. Taking the unusual ones out of the rotation may dampen the fun for some folks.
Presented for your use in the extended character level charts below are the alternate Hit Dice progression that uses only d6s alongside the normal progression. Due to the vagaries of the Blogger platform, the charts will be at different font sizes here, even though they are made in the same format on my computer. As always, click on an image to enbiggify it.
Using Six-Siders For Weapon Damage:
If you make all Hit Dice into six-siders then it makes sense for weapon damage to work the same way. If you do this, then players can give their character the weapon they best imagine rather than picking a weapon that deals the most damage. Therefore this actually improves the choices for many players. Additionally, since weapon damage is lower overall, the bonus Fighters get from Weapon Specialization and the damage bonus from high Str mean more.
The lower Hit Point totals from all d6s as Hit Dice matches the lower weapon damage output by all d6 weapons.
On the other hand, the same problem happens here as with Hit Dice: people really like rolling the different dice, and this means they get to do it less.