Opportunity Attacks: A Little House Ruling

So I’ve binging on various OSR Anchorite podcasts of late and Radio Grognard got me thinking. I think it was Episode 10 when Glenn mentions Opportunity Attacks and well like I said, I got thinking. I dug out my Swords & Wizard book. Yep, they were there. I looked at my Mentzer Red Book. Yep, it’s there too. Although there is an option to half move without getting whacked. Hmm. Let’s think about these for a moment. Not sure why these are there (like Glenn said) but I do know how they ended up impacting, at least, our games. This made the fighters up front even more like meat shields for the magic user. Monsters would have to go thru gauntlet to get to that fragile but dangerous spell caster. Also, it made even more unlikely that PC’s wold run away from a fight that they should. Let’s by the time they figure out that they’re outclassed, it’s probably too late. My little mind set about for a simple way to do these without have such dire consequences and make them fell less like an attack but more like an escape. Because I think it’s more about one party escaping rather than the other attacking. And the answer is pretty simple. Saving Throws.
Here’s the deal. Want to back out/flee/go for the soft target. Make a Saving Throw. To keep the theme of Thieves as dodgy little buggers, go ahead make this like a Save vs Traps. Fail and take damage.
If a monster is avoiding a character, the damage is the base damage for the character’s primary weapon in hand. No bonus for any class stuff or high ability scores. But if there’s a penalty that applies.
If a player character is avoiding a monster, use the base damage of the monster’s primary attack. Do not apply any special conditions of the attack such as poison, paralyzation, level drain and so on.
There you go simple with some risk but not really an attack per se. I think I already said that.
Keep ’em rolling and enjoy.

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