Pokemon for open legend

I stumbled across a partial 5e homebrew of some Pokemon monsters and was curious as to if it was possible to do a Pokemon style game in open legend


It would be totally do-able.

You would most likely have to re-word the base rules to make it sound like Pokemon, but you could easily use it’s mechanics.

Mostly because the Feats and such are worded in such a way, and the attributes are openly named.

Really your just re-naming things to make it sound Pokemon-ish.

Energy falls into a lot of the “types”
Creation could be a few different ones
Mental attributes fall into “psychic type”?

It can be done.

The thing that makes Pokémon so great, in my opinion, is how the different types interact with each other. I’d definitely create all the different Pokémon types as some sort of energy (or martial attack for normal, fighting and such) and then create some resistances and vulnerabilities to go with each type.

Something like:

  • Water-type deals 5 more damage against Fire, Ground, Rock ect. if the attack is a hit.
  • Fire-type deals 5 more damage against Grass, Bug, Steel ect. of the attack is a hit.
  • Some feats, like flying, should be baseline for flying types, and each evolutionary step of a Pokémon could have a higher amount of attribute and feat points.

All in all a very intriguing idea. I’m looking forward to see how this evolves (pun intended ^_^)


Just make it so:

Fire, Ground, Rock, etc have -5 Guard vs Water-type. That’s how you would want to do it in this system. Though 5 might be a bit much. 3 would probably be a better target number.


What about granting advantages against creatures vulnerable to certain energy types? Like fire creatures granting any water attack against them 3 advantages? I guess in OL such issues would be mainly handled via the advantage/disadvantage mechanics.

This wouldn’t work, b/c if you chose to multi-target 3 pokemon, and only 1 had Advantage b/c of type.

Normally you would roll with 3 disadvantage, but b/c 1 target has advantage, how do you modify the roll to not apply to the other other 2? You can’t.

so you modify their Guard for your attacks.


Good point, didn’t think about multiple targets or area attacks.

What about half damage for resistance against an energy or double damage against vulnerable creatures?

You could Homebrew/House rule something like this, but that isn’t in nature of how OL works.

Directly affecting Guard/Toughness/Resolves as an impact on damage, since the roll and damage are one and the same.

a -5 to Guard is the same as saying +5 damage on a hit. But doubleing and halving things takes away from the awesomeness of explosions.

You roll 40 past someone’s guard… and… hurt them a little… 20 to HP vs 35 to HP. Explosions are suppose to have that huge impact.

Sure, on just a 7 past HP, 3 to HP vs 2 to HP isn’t much, but on the explosions is where it matters more.

Plus that is why defend interrupt is there.


Been thinking and reading a lot about how to approach this concept. I think it really does have a lot of potential and can turn into a really simple fun RPG. Well that is the plan anyway :smiley: Here is an example of Pikachu using the complex NPC rules. The reason I am using the complex rules is because I plan to allow the pokemon to level up and gain abilities. I found the pokedex for Generation 1 (Pokemon Red/Blue) and will use that as the level plan. Anyway here he is:

Pickachu (level 1)
Attributes: Might 2, Agility 3, Fortitude 3, Perception 3, Will 2, Presence 3, Energy 4
Defenses: Toughness 15, Guard 15, Resolve 15
HP: 26
Speed: 30’
Favored Actions:
• Thundershock – Energy (d20+d10 w/ Adv 1) vs Guard (triggers Immobile Bane on 5 damage or more)
• Growl – Presence (d20+1d8 vs Resolve inflicts Demoralize bane
Feats: Attack Specialisation(Lightning) 1, Bane Focus(Immobile)

Just as a general note in regards to the types of pokemon (electric, grass etc) going to use the advantage/disadvantage for the special attacks.


I think Pokémon would be really interesting to do in Open Legend, but one would need to function more on a “cartoon” cinematic level than like the video game, which is insanely crunchy for a game about pixel critters. Because of that, I think focusing too hard on things like type matchups would ruin a lot of the fun of this genre. In the show, battles are more about the bond between Pokémon and trainer, clever use of terrain features and strategy. I’d only worry about it in special circumstances (for example, for ground Pokémon I would give them a high level of the Energy Resistance feat against electric attacks).

Honestly, I think the harder and more essential mechanic of a Pokémon game is player power vs. Pokémon power, and figuring out how to represent “catching” ability and balance out what Pokémon you have in your party. Do you take it as a “Creation” attribute and work it out through the summoning boon? Do you have the Trainer take Unending Charm and represent it through Influence? Do you force them to take the companion feat multiple times? How do you quantify evolution?

The natural limits of power at various levels, at least, are a good mechanic for representing the trainer’s limited ability to control Pokémon of higher levels. I’d probably award a level or XP every time one got a badge.

Sorry to hijack the discussion, I have looked for a LONG time for a bookkeeping-lite way to tabletop Pokemon and I’m still turning this over in my head!


Exactly… :100: :dart:

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Yeah I agree in keeping in simple. The overall “feel” of this RPG should be like everything Pokemon, lighthearted and fun. I will get a wiki or website up soon in regards to my thought processes and plans but for now the general concept im trying to focus on is Trainers and their Pokemon travelling having adventures. So Trainers would still have some stats (Physical, Mental, Social) but no Extraordinary and no feats (yet). Not sure how to balance out the point buy for that yet. The pokemon themselves will be able to level up, Im going to go through the Gen 1 moveset and convert it to OL. The Pokemon themselves will be using the “simple” NPC creation rules and the movesets are where the feats will be applied. Hopefully this all makes sense :D.

Whats ironic is that whilst I am loving building this system, I’ll have to GM it and I have no idea what to do for encouters or storyline LOL.

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Not meaning to argue, but just a pushback on the “no extraordinary attributes”–I think there can be good story reasons for pokemon trainers to have those. After all–A pokemon world is inherently magical/hyperscientific by sheer virtue of pokemon existing. We know that some Psychics are pokemon trainers–maybe your pokemon trainer wants to take a few points in prescience! That would make for an interesting story. What about that little girl from the Entei movie–by all appearances, the Unown’s connection with her give her incredible powers of creation and/or alteration. True that isn’t HER, per se, but it would be easier with OL mechanics (in my opinion) to represent that than it would be to give her a bazillion pokemon at her beck and call. Even something as silly and minor as the dude who makes puzzles in Hoenn and creates robots, complicated labyrinths, and teleportation panels overnight . . . there are plenty of places for extraordinary attributes to make their appearances in a pokemon setting, and not all of them are the pokemon themselves.

I’d also encourage you to think a little more “fast and loose” with the pokemon design–you don’t need to go through all of the moves and assign them to specific feats or what have you. Think instead about what main things you want to accomplish with a specific pokemon/one character’s version of that pokemon. The Ghost gym leader likes to use her Gengar for sleep and draining life? toss a couple feats her way that do that. Whether she calls it “hypnosis” and “dream eater” is immaterial. Maybe her friend, with a different Gengar, focuses on poison and big-hitting entropy moves instead.

I mean, if you want to go through and work to replicate various moves with specific feats, you go gangbusters, my dude. I just think that’s creating a lot of extra work!


That’s a valid point in regards to trainers wanting to focus on specific types of Pokemon certainly, using the feats to give types of Pokemon bonuses would definitely work I think. In regards to Pokemon abilities themselves, there are only 160 or so moves in Gen 1 and I’m thinking about consolidatibg some but I think they need to stay simple because their moves are iconic to Pokemon itself and so far it’s pretty easy to convert them to OL.

Quick question though, if I keep down this path doing a Pokemon rpg for OL would there be any chance Nintendo would catch wind of this and lay down the cease and desist usage of our intellectual property hammer?

Very unlikely. You aren’t benefiting financially from it, and they can’t dictate what you do in your own home. Nor can they truly censor your words on the forum (to an extent they might can, but generally speaking no).

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Well that’s good to know :laughing: now back to making the site

I’m super excited that this is being talked about. There’s obviously a lot of things to consider but I wanted to post ,in my excitement, about PokéBalls

all of this is coming from one with basic knowledge of Pokémon and decent enough knowledge in open legends to play while looking specifics up occasionally.

One could use an advantage system to an agility roll based on static and conditional bonuses of the ball used, one could use the gen 1 system of just getting a random number in a parameter based on the power of the ball, catch rate of the Pokémon, and status effects, etc…

To fully consider this, though, we’d need to know how challenge rating for catching each Pokémon is determined.

A lot of this could be just simplified by the will of the GM, but I’d appreciate any ideas.

Edit: There may be some confusion but what I would like optimally is some system that allows for me to consistently compensate for when someone uses a Pokeball vs. when someone uses Taming or Influence.


It probably would be more difficult to capture higher level pokemon, the challenge rating would probably be determined by the GM to match the party better, and the type of pokeball could infer advantage on the capture. Of course, the rule could also be set so that rather than a finishing blow, a player captures the pokemon with a challenge DC appropriately determined by the level. This would make it even harder to capture a stronger pokemon early on, as a pokemon that was too strong would ruin the early game.

Of course the idea could follow something completely different, relying on the PC’s ability as well, such as a variation of the Summon Creature boon for example. If that were the case, then depending on the pokemon, the score focus could follow the general idea of the pokemon, such as the highest stat being energy(fire) for a charmander, or simply might for something like a machamp. At that point, the only question becomes what attribute the player wants to use to catch it, be it protection to trap it in a barrier, or agility for throwing the ball, or maybe even influence to hypnotize the pokemon.

But if you REALLY wanted to be as close to the franchise as possible, you could use their formulas and do the crunchwork for each individual attempted capture (here).