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Three is for 3D6 (three six-sided dice).  That’s what you roll to create the beginning statistics for Tunnels and Trolls characters.  That should produce a nice bell curve of numbers ranging from 3 to 18 with average values being betwen 9 and 12.  But it doesn’t!  Because in T & T, triples add and roll over (TARO).  Thus, the lowest possible attribute a character could have is a 4.  Except it isn’t.  Some characters have reduced or multiplied attribute ratings.  For example: a Hobb only has 1/2 X STR.  Thus if you rolled a 1, 1, 2 on your 3D6,  you’d have a 4 times 1/2 = STR of 2.  That’s a terrible attribute, even for Hobb, so throw that character away and start again.

Three is also for triples.  When you roll the same 3 numbers on your dice for an attribute,  you may create a Specialist character in Tunnels & Troll 7.5.  His/Her specialization should be based on the attribute that is a mutant ability as indicated by the triples.  If you tripled in Speed, for example,  you might want to create a Messenger specialist–the character has the unique ability to move around very quickly.  All sorts of specialists could be created–it just depends on your imagination and how much rope the Game Master is willing to give  you.

Three should also be for the Triune Goddess.  I love the Goddess, and she’s in Tunnels and Trolls as Lerotra’hh, the Death Goddess, patroness of the Monster Kindreds, but she really isn’t triple, so that connection simply isn’t there.

Half elf, half uruk, the Death Goddess of Khazan is all hellcat!

Three is for Third Level.  T & T characters are third level if they have one of their key attributes in the 30s.  Thus, a Warrior with a Strength of 35 would be third level; a Wizard with an Intelligence of 39 would still be third level.  Third level is a great level to play–powerful enough to do a few unusual things–not so powerful that the character overshadows everyone else.

Of course, the level thing could be said for any number (grin).  I’ll try not to use it again, but I might have to use it for 31.

There really aren’t that many threes in Tunnels and Trolls, but I can think of one more.  You’ll see it on my site at  The challenge reads:  If a member of Trollhalla you would be, you must answer questions three.

I’ll award a free membership to Trollhalla or 300 trollish victory points to the first person to identify the source of that quote in a comment.

Come back on May 4 to see what I have for the number 4. 

end (a word with 3 letters)


  1. The challenge quote (“If a member of Trollhalla you would be, you must answer questions three.”) is from the Welcome page on Trollhalla–specifically the “What is going on here?” section.
    The three questions to be answered are: name and mailing address, desired Trollish name, and desired password. 😀

  2. That quote is from Monty Python & the holy grail, right? “You must answer questions three, ere the other side you see” or something like that.

    Confession time: When I first saw a physical copy of T&T back in the mid-1980s at a hobby shop, my brother & I flipped through it and saw the character generation rules that gave some races x2 or 3 on some stats and x1.5 on others, decided that there was a complete lack of balance and put it back on the rack. Nowadays lack of balance is not a deal-breaker for me but back then we were annoyed that humans looked like they were the worst of the lot (we did not read further to see if other things made up for that perceived weakness).

    I don’t know if T&T attracts munchkins or not but I assume they all play trolls.

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