I am working on a project based upon Microlite 2020 Complete, but set in the modern age. How would be the best way to deal with alcohol and drug use and perhaps abuse?
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Update (19 Jun 23):
As I mentioned many weeks ago, maintaining the seldom used Wordpress side of this site became too much of a bother, especially as parts of Wordpress are constantly updating and some those updates break things -- like access to this forum. I'm finally had time to remove it. The forum should stop disappearing from view now.
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Discussion and Reviews of rules-lite tabeletop RPGs (games like Microlite20, The Black Hack, etc.)
I think the best way to handle alcohol is to treat it like a poison: DC 10 Fortitude save or gain the Poisoned condition for one hour, DC and condition duration increases by +1 for each drink after the first.
I think the problem here is that if you use the words 'alcohol and drugs' instead of 'potions' you get a very different response from folks -- perhaps because potions are generally only shown to be beneficial in most fantasy game settings. The reason why people use alcohol and drugs is because they are effective to one degree or another at mood enhancement and pain reduction as well as enhancing other things like strength, dexterity, acuity, etc. They also come with serious risks associated with addiction and side-effects (even when prescribed). Militaries have and continue to tolerate and even encourage the use of powerful performance enhancing drugs that would be illegal in the civilian populations.
I get it that people may not be interested in playing a game that introduces too much realism or touches upon sensitive topics, but all the same I am curious about the best game mechanic to show the beneficial side as well as the dangerous and harmful side. I think I found some ideas out there and I will see if I can make them apply.