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** Ironically, AD&D, in its first edition, broke away from OD&D's rules; "Roll 4d6 and drop the lowest, rearrange as desired" is Method I of the four recommended methods for determining character attributes. The other three are "Roll 3d6 twelve times and retain the highest six scores", "roll 3d6 six times for each ability score and retain the highest result" and "generate twelve sets of ability scores, each time rolling a 3d6 for each ability score, and retain the single set the player prefers". "Honest rolls" is ''not'' a recommended method for [=PCs=], and even general [=NPCs=] use a variant of the "honest rolls" method. By the Unearthed Arcana, the suggested method was to choose character class first, which then determined how many dice could be rolled for each stat; for a class’s prime requisite stat, that meant rolling 9d6 and dropping the lowest ''six'' rolls.

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** Ironically, AD&D, in its first edition, broke away from OD&D's rules; "Roll 4d6 and drop the lowest, rearrange as desired" is Method I of the four recommended methods for determining character attributes. The other three are "Roll 3d6 twelve times and retain the highest six scores", "roll 3d6 six times for each ability score and retain the highest result" and "generate twelve sets of ability scores, each time rolling a 3d6 for each ability score, and retain the single set the player prefers". "Honest rolls" is ''not'' a recommended method for [=PCs=], and even general [=NPCs=] use a variant of the "honest rolls" method. By the Unearthed Arcana, the suggested method was to choose character a character’s class first, which then determined how many dice could be rolled for each stat; for a class’s prime requisite stat, that meant rolling 9d6 and dropping the lowest ''six'' rolls.


** Ironically, AD&D, in its first edition, broke away from OD&D's rules; "Roll 4d6 and drop the lowest, rearrange as desired" is Method I of the four recommended methods for determining character attributes. The other three are "Roll 3d6 twelve times and retain the highest six scores", "roll 3d6 six times for each ability score and retain the highest result" and "generate twelve sets of ability scores, each time rolling a 3d6 for each ability score, and retain the single set the player prefers". "Honest rolls" is ''not'' a recommended method for [=PCs=], and even general [=NPCs=] use a variant of the "honest rolls" method.

to:

** Ironically, AD&D, in its first edition, broke away from OD&D's rules; "Roll 4d6 and drop the lowest, rearrange as desired" is Method I of the four recommended methods for determining character attributes. The other three are "Roll 3d6 twelve times and retain the highest six scores", "roll 3d6 six times for each ability score and retain the highest result" and "generate twelve sets of ability scores, each time rolling a 3d6 for each ability score, and retain the single set the player prefers". "Honest rolls" is ''not'' a recommended method for [=PCs=], and even general [=NPCs=] use a variant of the "honest rolls" method. By the Unearthed Arcana, the suggested method was to choose character class first, which then determined how many dice could be rolled for each stat; for a class’s prime requisite stat, that meant rolling 9d6 and dropping the lowest ''six'' rolls.


** The very first version of D&D (commonly nicknamed [[FanNickname OD&D, BD&D or BECMI]], to distinguish it from the more famous AD&D, which was printed later but ran concurrently) had the character creation rule of rolling 3d6 in order, which is where this trope originated. But even it came to acknowledge there were problems in it; the release of the Rules Cyclopedia came with the rule of adjusting stats by dropping 2 points from one stat (although you couldn't decrease Constitution or Charisma) to boost another stat by 1 point. This couldn't be used to reduce a stat below 9, though, so it was still only really useful if you had pretty high rolls to begin with.

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** The very first version of D&D (commonly nicknamed [[FanNickname OD&D, BD&D or BECMI]], to distinguish it from the more famous AD&D, which was printed later but ran concurrently) had the character creation rule of rolling 3d6 in order, which is where this trope originated. But even it came to acknowledge almost from the earliest there were problems in it; the release of the Rules Cyclopedia came with the was a rule that by concentrating on training one stat, a character could boost that stat by 1 point, at the cost of adjusting stats by dropping 2 points from one stat (although you couldn't decrease Constitution or Charisma) to boost another stat by 1 point. This couldn't be used to reduce a stat below 9, though, so it was still only really useful if you had pretty high rolls to begin with.stat.


''D&D'' consequences: One stat below 8[[note]]For any given stat, there is approximately a 16.2% chance that it will be 7 or less in the 3d6 scenario[[/note]] will severely limit your character abilities; two or three can render it unplayable as a PC. And that's ''before'' you actually try to play the character and have to deal with the penalties for below-average stats, which was anything from a -1 penalty to hit and damage for a low Strength for the earliest versions, to a big penalty to AC if your Dexterity was the stat that took the hit in the later versions. Prior to 3rd edition, this problem was even more pronounced, as you needed a ''bare minimum'' in certain ability scores to qualify for certain classes AND for certain races (which were one and the same, in the original D&D). Which meant that if you had your heart set on playing ThePaladin, you were almost certainly screwed over if the DM insisted on this trope, as its extremely high stat requirements in multiple ability scores.

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''D&D'' consequences: One stat below 8[[note]]For any given stat, there is approximately a 16.2% chance that it will be 7 or less in the 3d6 scenario[[/note]] will severely limit generally not impact your character abilities; two or three can render it unplayable as a PC.abilities, because most classes don't use most stats (see also: DumpStat). And that's ''before'' you actually try to play the character and have to deal with the penalties for below-average stats, which was anything from a -1 penalty to hit and damage for a low Strength for the earliest versions, to a big penalty to AC if your Dexterity was the stat that took the hit in the later versions. Prior to 3rd edition, this problem was even more pronounced, as you needed a ''bare minimum'' in certain ability scores to qualify for certain classes AND for certain races (which were one and the same, in the original D&D). Which meant that if you had your heart set on playing ThePaladin, you were almost certainly screwed over if the DM insisted on this trope, as its extremely high stat requirements in multiple ability scores.



** Fifth Edition uses a more complex version of the Point Buy System with optional expanded rules. By default, the standard array of skill points is 15, 14, 13, 8, 10, 12, arranged as you like, plus racial scores. You can also start with an 8 in everything and distribute 27 points, and then distribute your racial points if your DM allows it. You could ALSO do a random roll, 4d6 drop lowest (average of about 11 or so), or your DM could give you pre-made stat arrays for you to do with as you saw fit. 5th edition emphasizes character customization, so you have four different ways to solve it.

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** Fifth Edition uses a more complex version of the Point Buy System with optional expanded rules. By default, the standard array of skill points is 15, 14, 13, 8, 10, 12, arranged as you like, plus racial scores. You can also start with an 8 in everything and distribute 27 points, and then distribute your racial points if your DM allows it. You could ALSO do a random roll, 4d6 drop lowest (average of about 11 or so), or your DM could give you pre-made stat arrays for you to do with as you saw fit. 5th Interestingly, this is the only edition emphasizes character customization, so where rolling for stats will possibly get you have four different ways better stats (because rolling can get you up to solve it.an 18, and point buy only a 15).


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* ''TabletopGame/{{Paranoia}}'', in early editions, gives you a roll-for-stats system that intentionally ends up with highly random and/or ludicrous characters, because the point of the game is that you're going to die regardless of your stats.

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** Second edition Pathfinder moved to point buy as the default option, but 4d6 drop lowest is still an optional alternate method.

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** Early editions of ''WFRP'' actually mandated this, so you roll random stats and random careers (though you do at least have the choice of your race). Some people found this limiting and unfun and so made house-rules around this, others found "making do" added to the charm. There's something inspiring about rolling up a peasant ActionSurvivor and surviving by the skin of your teeth. 4th Edition found a happy compromise by using a hybrid system; if you have a specific character concept in mind or [[EasyModeMockery happen to be a big baby]] then you have alternative systems, but rolling is encouraged by granting characters bonus starting experience points scaling with how much randomness their player was willing to accept in their creation.


This method of generating character stats isn't popular these days (indeed, even back then HouseRules frequently circumvented this) because, since the rolls are honest, they are also completely random. You will get average or below-average stats more than half the time, and stats well below average on occasion, especially if you forgot to pay homage to the RandomNumberGod before you rolled; and if you had your heart set on a pre-conceived character concept, the dice were more than happy to mess up your plans, [[FinaglesLaw usually by placing a low number into a score that you really needed a high number in]]. (In the times when Honest Rolls characters were the default, it was expected that [[KillerGameMaster you'd go through several characters]] during a campaign, so a single set of rolls not fitting a concept you had in mind wasn't such an issue.)

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This method of generating character stats isn't popular these days (indeed, even back then HouseRules frequently circumvented this) because, since the rolls are honest, they are also completely random. You will get average or below-average stats more than half the time, and stats well below average on occasion, especially if you forgot to pay homage to the RandomNumberGod before you rolled; and if you had your heart set on a pre-conceived character concept, the dice were more than happy to mess up your plans, [[FinaglesLaw usually by placing a low number into a score that you really needed a high number in]]. (In [[note]]In the times when Honest Rolls characters were the default, it was expected that [[KillerGameMaster you'd go through several characters]] during a campaign, so a single set of if your rolls not fitting a didn't fit the concept you had in mind were hoping to use that wasn't such an issue.)
issue - you could just save the concept for your next PC.[[/note]]


This method of generating character stats isn't popular these days (indeed, even back then HouseRules frequently circumvented this) because, since the rolls are honest, they are also completely random. You will get average or below-average stats more than half the time, and stats well below average on occasion, especially if you forgot to pay homage to the RandomNumberGod before you rolled; and if you had your heart set on a pre-conceived character concept, the dice were more than happy to mess up your plans, [[FinaglesLaw usually by placing a low number into a score that you really needed a high number in]].

to:

This method of generating character stats isn't popular these days (indeed, even back then HouseRules frequently circumvented this) because, since the rolls are honest, they are also completely random. You will get average or below-average stats more than half the time, and stats well below average on occasion, especially if you forgot to pay homage to the RandomNumberGod before you rolled; and if you had your heart set on a pre-conceived character concept, the dice were more than happy to mess up your plans, [[FinaglesLaw usually by placing a low number into a score that you really needed a high number in]].
in]]. (In the times when Honest Rolls characters were the default, it was expected that [[KillerGameMaster you'd go through several characters]] during a campaign, so a single set of rolls not fitting a concept you had in mind wasn't such an issue.)


** Ironically, AD&D, in its first edition, broke away from OD&D's rules; "Roll 4d6 and drop the lowest, rearrange as desired" is Method I of the four recommended methods for determining character attributes. The other three are "Roll 3d6 twelve times and retain the highest six scores", "roll 3d6 six times for each ability score and retain the highest result" and "generate twelve sets of ability scores, each time rolling a 3d6 for each ability score, and retain the single set the player prefers". "Honest rolls" is ''not'' a recommended method for PCs, and even general NPCs use a variant of the "honest rolls" method.

to:

** Ironically, AD&D, in its first edition, broke away from OD&D's rules; "Roll 4d6 and drop the lowest, rearrange as desired" is Method I of the four recommended methods for determining character attributes. The other three are "Roll 3d6 twelve times and retain the highest six scores", "roll 3d6 six times for each ability score and retain the highest result" and "generate twelve sets of ability scores, each time rolling a 3d6 for each ability score, and retain the single set the player prefers". "Honest rolls" is ''not'' a recommended method for PCs, [=PCs=], and even general NPCs [=NPCs=] use a variant of the "honest rolls" method.


* First Edition AD&D actually averts this.


''D&D'' consequences: One stat below 8[[note]]For any given stat, there is approximately a 16.2% chance that it will be 7 or less in the 3d6 scenario[[/note]] will severely limit your character abilities; two or three can render it unplayable as a PC. And that's ''before'' you actually try to play the character and have to deal with the penalties for below-average stats, which was anything from a -1 penalty to hit and damage for a low Strength for the earliest versions, to a big penalty to AC if your Dexterity was the stat that took the hit in the later versions. Prior to 3rd edition, this problem was even more pronounced, as you needed a ''bare minimum'' in certain ability scores to qualify for certain classes AND for certain races (which were one in the same, in the original D&D). Which meant that if you had your heart set on playing ThePaladin, you were almost certainly screwed over if the DM insisted on this trope, as its extremely high stat requirements in multiple ability scores.

to:

''D&D'' consequences: One stat below 8[[note]]For any given stat, there is approximately a 16.2% chance that it will be 7 or less in the 3d6 scenario[[/note]] will severely limit your character abilities; two or three can render it unplayable as a PC. And that's ''before'' you actually try to play the character and have to deal with the penalties for below-average stats, which was anything from a -1 penalty to hit and damage for a low Strength for the earliest versions, to a big penalty to AC if your Dexterity was the stat that took the hit in the later versions. Prior to 3rd edition, this problem was even more pronounced, as you needed a ''bare minimum'' in certain ability scores to qualify for certain classes AND for certain races (which were one in and the same, in the original D&D). Which meant that if you had your heart set on playing ThePaladin, you were almost certainly screwed over if the DM insisted on this trope, as its extremely high stat requirements in multiple ability scores.


''D&D'' consequences: One stat below 8[[note]]For any given stat, there is approximately a 16.2% chance that it will be 7 or less in the 3d6 scenario[[/note]] will severely limit your character classes, sometimes even to a single class (earlier editions of ''AD&D'' even had stat requirements for playing specific classes); two or three can render it unplayable as a PC. And that's ''before'' you actually try to play the character and have to deal with the penalties for below-average stats, which was anything from a -1 penalty to hit and damage for a low Strength for the earliest versions, to a big penalty to AC if your Dexterity was the stat that took the hit in the later versions.

to:

''D&D'' consequences: One stat below 8[[note]]For any given stat, there is approximately a 16.2% chance that it will be 7 or less in the 3d6 scenario[[/note]] will severely limit your character classes, sometimes even to a single class (earlier editions of ''AD&D'' even had stat requirements for playing specific classes); abilities; two or three can render it unplayable as a PC. And that's ''before'' you actually try to play the character and have to deal with the penalties for below-average stats, which was anything from a -1 penalty to hit and damage for a low Strength for the earliest versions, to a big penalty to AC if your Dexterity was the stat that took the hit in the later versions.
versions. Prior to 3rd edition, this problem was even more pronounced, as you needed a ''bare minimum'' in certain ability scores to qualify for certain classes AND for certain races (which were one in the same, in the original D&D). Which meant that if you had your heart set on playing ThePaladin, you were almost certainly screwed over if the DM insisted on this trope, as its extremely high stat requirements in multiple ability scores.



* ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'':
** In earlier editions, the rule was simply to roll 3d6 for stats, and use them in the order you rolled.[[note]] 10 is average on 3d6, roughly. That's why it's the average stat. [[/note]]
** Third Edition is a little easier on rolling characters. The DMG explicitly encourages the rerolling of characters whose stats are too below average, and makes the default rule "Roll 4d6 and drop the lowest" rather than 3d6, so above average results will be more common (and the default is that instead of rolling for each stat in order, you roll six times and ''then'' distribute the results to the stats -- this means that while you are still susceptible to getting results above or below average, you can at least make certain that the character's stats roughly fit the role you had in mind). It also lists several alternatives, such as using a "point buy" system or fixed stat array, changing these methods from HouseRules to officially sanctioned options. Fourth Edition actually makes point-buy the default, though the Player's Handbook mentions rolling as an alternative (if one slightly slanted to produce worse stats than one could buy, on average).

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* ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'':
** In earlier editions,
''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'': One trait that spans all editions is the rule was simply to roll 3d6 idea of 10-11 as the "average" for stats, and use them in the order you rolled.[[note]] 10 is average on 3d6, roughly. That's why it's a stat; that's the average stat. [[/note]]
result of rolling 3d6 and adding them together.
** The very first version of D&D (commonly nicknamed [[FanNickname OD&D, BD&D or BECMI]], to distinguish it from the more famous AD&D, which was printed later but ran concurrently) had the character creation rule of rolling 3d6 in order, which is where this trope originated. But even it came to acknowledge there were problems in it; the release of the Rules Cyclopedia came with the rule of adjusting stats by dropping 2 points from one stat (although you couldn't decrease Constitution or Charisma) to boost another stat by 1 point. This couldn't be used to reduce a stat below 9, though, so it was still only really useful if you had pretty high rolls to begin with.
** Ironically, AD&D, in its first edition, broke away from OD&D's rules; "Roll 4d6 and drop the lowest, rearrange as desired" is Method I of the four recommended methods for determining character attributes. The other three are "Roll 3d6 twelve times and retain the highest six scores", "roll 3d6 six times for each ability score and retain the highest result" and "generate twelve sets of ability scores, each time rolling a 3d6 for each ability score, and retain the single set the player prefers". "Honest rolls" is ''not'' a recommended method for PCs, and even general NPCs use a variant of the "honest rolls" method.
** Even more ironically, AD&D 2nd edition would bring OD&D's "3d6 in order" rule back as the first of ''six'' methods of ability score generation; the other methods were, in order, "Roll 3d6 twice for each ability score, and then keep which result you prefer for that score", "Roll 3d6 and arrange the results to whichever ability scores you want", "roll 3d6 twice, keep the results you want and arrange to taste", "roll 4d6, drop lowest, arrange as desired", and "start with an 8 in all stats, then roll 7d6 and add the results from each dice to each ability score as you prefer".
** Third Edition is a little easier on rolling characters. The DMG explicitly encourages the rerolling of characters whose stats are aren't too below average, and makes the default rule "Roll 4d6 and drop the lowest" rather than 3d6, so above average results will be more common (and the default is that instead of rolling for each stat in order, you roll six times and ''then'' distribute the results to the stats -- this means that while you are still susceptible to getting results above or below average, you can at least make certain that the character's stats roughly fit the role you had in mind). It also lists several alternatives, such as using a "point buy" system or fixed stat array, changing these methods from HouseRules to officially sanctioned options. options.
**
Fourth Edition actually makes point-buy the default, though default option for generating ability scores "assign the Player's Handbook mentions rolling as an alternative (if one values 16, 14, 13, 12, 11, and 10 to whichever ability scores you prefer, then add your racial ability score modifiers". As alternatives, it allows you to customize your score through a combination of a default stats array and points buy, or roll your score with the "4d6 and drop the lowest" method first seen in AD&D 2nd edition. It does note that this last method will, on average, produce slightly slanted inferior results to produce worse stats than one could buy, on average).using the default ability score array.



* ''TabletopGame/{{Pathfinder}}'' also adopted the "Roll 4d6 and drop the lowest" as its standard character creation rule, but there are a couple of other options available, including the tournament standard of points buy. Fifth Edition returns to "Roll 4d6 and drop the lowest" as the standard method, but also endorses a specific point buy systems, including a premade stat array.

to:

* ''TabletopGame/{{Pathfinder}}'' also adopted the "Roll 4d6 and drop the lowest" as its standard character creation rule, but there are a couple of other options available, including the tournament standard of points buy. Fifth Edition returns to "Roll 4d6 and drop the lowest" as the standard method, but also endorses a specific point buy systems, including a premade stat array.



* First Edition AD&D actually averts this. "Roll 4d6 and drop the lowest, rearrange as desired" is Method I of the four recommended methods for determining character attributes. "Honest rolls" is ''not'' a recommended method.

to:

* First Edition AD&D actually averts this. "Roll 4d6 and drop the lowest, rearrange as desired" is Method I of the four recommended methods for determining character attributes. "Honest rolls" is ''not'' a recommended method.

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** Fifth Edition uses a more complex version of the Point Buy System with optional expanded rules. By default, the standard array of skill points is 15, 14, 13, 8, 10, 12, arranged as you like, plus racial scores. You can also start with an 8 in everything and distribute 27 points, and then distribute your racial points if your DM allows it. You could ALSO do a random roll, 4d6 drop lowest (average of about 11 or so), or your DM could give you pre-made stat arrays for you to do with as you saw fit. 5th edition emphasizes character customization, so you have four different ways to solve it.


''D&D'' consequences: One stat below 8 will severely limit your character classes, sometimes even to a single class (earlier editions of ''AD&D'' even had stat requirements for playing specific classes); two or three can render it unplayable as a PC. And that's ''before'' you actually try to play the character and have to deal with the penalties for below-average stats, which was anything from a -1 penalty to hit and damage for a low Strength for the earliest versions, to a big penalty to AC if your Dexterity was the stat that took the hit in the later versions.

to:

''D&D'' consequences: One stat below 8 8[[note]]For any given stat, there is approximately a 16.2% chance that it will be 7 or less in the 3d6 scenario[[/note]] will severely limit your character classes, sometimes even to a single class (earlier editions of ''AD&D'' even had stat requirements for playing specific classes); two or three can render it unplayable as a PC. And that's ''before'' you actually try to play the character and have to deal with the penalties for below-average stats, which was anything from a -1 penalty to hit and damage for a low Strength for the earliest versions, to a big penalty to AC if your Dexterity was the stat that took the hit in the later versions.


* In ''{{Rifts}}'' and other Palladium Games, this is pretty much the default for non-human characters. This is because, unlike humans who roll 3D6 for every stats, most non-humans have different die rolls for each stat. In practice, most [=GM=]s institute a house rule equivalent to the D&D 3.0 "Roll 4d6 and drop the lowest" rule.

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* In ''{{Rifts}}'' ''{{TabletopGame/Rifts}}'' and other Palladium Games, this is pretty much the default for non-human characters. This is because, unlike humans who roll 3D6 for every stats, most non-humans have different die rolls for each stat. In practice, most [=GM=]s institute a house rule equivalent to the D&D 3.0 "Roll 4d6 and drop the lowest" rule.

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