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Diffan
Great Reader

USA
3477 Posts

Posted - 12 Jan 2012 :  05:27:25  Show Profile Send Diffan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Well with the whole 5E being official and the strong emphasis on new Playtesting and what-not, I think this is a good thread to kick-start up again. Now, I'd rather not have yet another "What do you want to see in 5E!" kind of thread because those are all numerious yet often only lead to yelling about what's better than what with no rhyme or reason.

Instead, I'd like to hear one or two (three if you truely must) ideas that would fit into a d20 system-engine that benefits the game as a whole (not just one person's love for Vancian spellcasting or the removal of feats because they're "icky") and how that might be applied to such a system. These don't have to be strictly mechanically natured with math and numbers factored in, but general thoughts. Also, I'd like to hear the ideas of other systems (or even video games) on how they might be applied to the over all game in a positive way. Also, explainations are really helpful to fully understand the need for said idea to be incorporated.


I guess I'll go first:


  • One-half level approach: This was something that started first with Star Wars: Saga but became a main staple point with 4E. First, I think the best reason for this approach is that it doens't hold anyone back, including PC that like to branch out to other aspects areas of knowledge such as the Fighter dabbling in magic or the priest dabbling in a bit more sword-play. Second, it helps add up in the long run. In earlier editions, one had to be truely carful how bad their BAB got when multiclassing or taking a Prestige Class becaus just a few drops from the top performance meant a significant reduction in anything combat releated. These gains weren't strong enough to warrent such drops and thus fueled those who loved to Min/Max. By going half-level, this eliminates the drive for Min/Max in this fashion and makes dabbling a big more appealing.


  • Ability Scores and their role with combat: One thing that I've become enamored with about the current edition was that not every class that focuses on attacking must do so through Strength. Rogues do so automatically through Dex, Clerics can do so through Wisdom, and Paladins can choose to use Charisma. But how does this effect one's simulationist vision of the game?

    Personally, I felt that melee-based classes (ones that get up-close and personal) were instantly gimped when they were pretty much required to put a LOT into one attribtue, namely Strength, even when most of their features or spells or what have you came from something else. Further the line of thinking to other areas of the PC like saving throws, HP, and AC which all play a large factor overall. It's almost as if Synergy of Abilities Scores and character generation were at odds with one another. I don't think this is the best way to proceed namely because it wasn't the case for everyone.

    Certain classes were exempt from this area because everything they received was all based off one or two abilities and they could affort to have 2 or 3 "Dump Stats". I'm ok with one, espically in a game where Point Buy and Stat Array are becoming the standard norm, but lets keep most classes a little more synergetic at performing their role.


  • Skills: Ah, this feature of the game has caused SOO many arguments, created so much love, and everything in between. First, i"d like to say that I hope they remain with D&D for the duration of it's career. But that doens't mean that they got them right the first or (in Pathfinder's case) the second or even third time around. But as each edition comes and goes, they all take their swipe at this area. My perspective is, we need to give classes more but divide areas. What I'd like to see is 3 separate columns of Skills. Ones that direcly involve Combat, ones with social aspects, and ones for character backgrounds. Each race/class can have training or proficiency or whatever in a few from each column.

    The question is, ranks or no ranks? I can say I've NEVER been a fan of Ranks mainly because it's a pain in the butt when your making a 13th level NPC with 68 ranks to distribute among 28 skills and keeping in mind what skills are available at which time with what class. It became too much. Pathfinder made it a bit simpler, paring down a few skills and putting the ranks to equal your ECL. 4E made it more simpler, saying you have training in X amount but your not restricted to any of them, good luck. So I'd have to say I'm a fan of the static bonus and training over the multidued of skill ranks that a PC gets every level. But I'm not without compromise and I feel if a Rank-system is more popular, then it should be more like Paizo and have X amount of ranks but no more than your total-ECL. I also feel that keeping certain skills together was an oveall success such as Stealth, Perception, Athletics, Acrobatics instead of 2-3 different skills for each.



Ok, what I posted were my own opinions which I feel you may or may NOT agree with. That's ok and i'm very open to constructive criticism. That being said, feel free to bring up your ideas or comments on what I said (or to just talk about mechanics in general).

4E Realms = Great Taste, Less Filling.

"If WotC were to put out a box of free money, people would still complain how it was folded."
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Old Man Harpell
Senior Scribe

USA
473 Posts

Posted - 14 Jan 2012 :  17:33:45  Show Profile  Visit Old Man Harpell's Homepage Send Old Man Harpell a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Multi-classing; One thing that 4th Edition did that found favor with me was stepping on the endless multi-classing (especially just so you could get X Prestige Class and then the Y Prestige Class - which, as a player, I admit I too exploited mercilessly). I have completely forbidden multi-classing in my Pathfinder game, and since we are still at relatively low levels, am looking into ways to utilize the 'half level' approach.

Split Stats: One thing we are looking into, which started in Second Edition (and which I really haven't seen since) is Split Statistics. This lends to emphasis on aspects which may end up making a difference, not just in roleplay, but in mechanics aspect.

By way of example, my wife plays a half-orc fighter. Using Point Buy, she came out with a Charisma of 14 (and a Wisdom of 7...ouch). Since the missus hates being party leader or making decisions beyond keeping her companions and herself alive, she has little use for the things that define being a strong leader. Conversely, she has described the half-orc as being uncharacteristically attractive for one of her species - apart from skin tone and a tiny pair of tusks, she looks like six feet of muscular blonde Norse valkyrie. Even those who normally give half-orcs a hard time look twice to be sure she is what she appears to be.

So if we split that Charisma of 14 into its components, Leadership and Appearance, we trade off points on a one-for-one basis. Make it Leadership of 12 and Appearance of 16, for example - for every point you take one of the sub-attributes in one direction, you take the other in the opposite direction. Min/maxing becomes as detrimental as not in cases like this. Yes, it's still possible, but sacrifices are still to be made if things like this are used. And you can require a justification for it (such as the above half-orc).

That sorcerer may have a Charisma of 18, and split it 14/22 for the bonus spell slots (which, if I recall, 4 points either way was the recommended limit), but he'll take a hit in Reaction and physical appearance interaction, even as he becomes a walking artillery piece...which I, as a GM, enforce ruthlessly. Make that fey or infernal aspect shine, baby (heh, heh). "No, I'm not a tiefling, fool, pay the glowing eyes no attention!" Build in certain aspects beyond the numbers, and have them accept it if they want the number aspects of those attributes.

Just a couple of (long-winded) items that sprang to mind.
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Zireael
Master of Realmslore

Poland
1190 Posts

Posted - 14 Jan 2012 :  20:33:25  Show Profile  Visit Zireael's Homepage Send Zireael a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Old Man Harpell

Multi-classing; One thing that 4th Edition did that found favor with me was stepping on the endless multi-classing (especially just so you could get X Prestige Class and then the Y Prestige Class - which, as a player, I admit I too exploited mercilessly). I have completely forbidden multi-classing in my Pathfinder game, and since we are still at relatively low levels, am looking into ways to utilize the 'half level' approach.

Split Stats: One thing we are looking into, which started in Second Edition (and which I really haven't seen since) is Split Statistics. This lends to emphasis on aspects which may end up making a difference, not just in roleplay, but in mechanics aspect.

By way of example, my wife plays a half-orc fighter. Using Point Buy, she came out with a Charisma of 14 (and a Wisdom of 7...ouch). Since the missus hates being party leader or making decisions beyond keeping her companions and herself alive, she has little use for the things that define being a strong leader. Conversely, she has described the half-orc as being uncharacteristically attractive for one of her species - apart from skin tone and a tiny pair of tusks, she looks like six feet of muscular blonde Norse valkyrie. Even those who normally give half-orcs a hard time look twice to be sure she is what she appears to be.

So if we split that Charisma of 14 into its components, Leadership and Appearance, we trade off points on a one-for-one basis. Make it Leadership of 12 and Appearance of 16, for example - for every point you take one of the sub-attributes in one direction, you take the other in the opposite direction. Min/maxing becomes as detrimental as not in cases like this. Yes, it's still possible, but sacrifices are still to be made if things like this are used. And you can require a justification for it (such as the above half-orc).

That sorcerer may have a Charisma of 18, and split it 14/22 for the bonus spell slots (which, if I recall, 4 points either way was the recommended limit), but he'll take a hit in Reaction and physical appearance interaction, even as he becomes a walking artillery piece...which I, as a GM, enforce ruthlessly. Make that fey or infernal aspect shine, baby (heh, heh). "No, I'm not a tiefling, fool, pay the glowing eyes no attention!" Build in certain aspects beyond the numbers, and have them accept it if they want the number aspects of those attributes.

Just a couple of (long-winded) items that sprang to mind.



Split stats are an excellent idea - can you tell me where I can find more?

I like this
quote:
One thing that I've become enamored with about the current edition was that not every class that focuses on attacking must do so through Strength. Rogues do so automatically through Dex, Clerics can do so through Wisdom, and Paladins can choose to use Charisma.
, since after a little tweaking it allows removing (or lessening) dump stats.

One-half level is also a good thing.

--------------------------------------

Personally, I would remove the levels and challenge ratings from Next D&D, and place the giving-out of XP completely in the DM's hands.

------------------------
Do you prefer AD&D/3e Vancian system (spell slots, etc.), or the Tome of Battle system (Encounter/Per-Day/Stances) or maybe the 4e system?

Would you keep the difference between the wizards and the fighters (nicknamed 'Linear Warriors Quadratic Wizards') or would you streamline them - I don't mean giving warriors spells, but applying the same mechanics to them - something like Tome of Battle manevuers for every class...

SiNafay Vrinn, the daughter of Lloth, from Ched Nasad!

http://zireael07.wordpress.com/
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
15654 Posts

Posted - 15 Jan 2012 :  01:00:34  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Would someone explain the one-half level thing to me? I read something about it a long time ago on paizo's site, before they finalized the rules, but I forget the specifics.

Split stats are excellent. I have never used just the base ones - I have had systems with everything from 7 stats to 35 (I like to have stats for the senses, as well). For instance, someone needs to roll an 18 or better to notice something - they get to add their alertness bonus, which would be the bonuses from Vision and hearing (and smell, if applicable). The stats are the same bell-curve as the normal ones, and use the same bonuses. This also helps quite a bit differentiating the races.

I also don't believe in negative numbers while generating characters - my system fixed that, and alleviated the need for all those rolling systems. For instance, a human's strength is 2d+6, A Half-orc gets 2d6+8. Everyone rolls just two dice. NPCs roll the normal three (if you generate them randomly - I don't). In this system, Dwarves would have a 2d6+8 STR as well, but only a 2d6+4 CHA. It removes any crap stats, and you don't get any oddities like a dwarf with a CHA of 1. Heroes are supposed to be better, otherwise they'd just stay home and pick corn.

I'm also a fan of armor-as-damage-reduction. I know thats not classic D&D, but it allows for a better system of unarmored fighting. dextrous fighters should be harder to hit then one encumbered by a hundred pounds of plate... but they aren't under the regular rules. You Agility (a split of dexterity) should determine how hard you are to hit, along with training. Armor just keeps you from getting killed when you do get hit.

I am all for each class having its stat determine its combat-effectiveness. A rogue doesn't rely on brute force, he relies on a carefully place kill-shot.

I mentioned in another thread turning 'HP' into stamina, and having that work as spell points as well. That allows a Mage to endanger himself by over-casting (and passing out). It makes sense (in 4e/CRPG world) that HP no longer represents hits at all, since you can now recover them faster (and on your own). Criticals should be 'real' hits, counted against CON, and only healed by a cleric or potion). Thats a nice blend of old and new - fans of the classic game can rationalize that they aren't really 'healing' faster - they were just winded.

Thats all I got for now - it was part of a new system I was working on. Maybe I'll call it 6e (sexy?)

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone

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Kentinal
Great Reader

4337 Posts

Posted - 15 Jan 2012 :  01:12:39  Show Profile Send Kentinal a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Half levels under current edition I can not explain, however prior editions have approached it in a few ways.
Being "monster" and class one advanced part as the "monster" and part of the class (or classes). There also was duel classing and versions of multi-classing.
Half levels basically came dome level up part of character to a higher level then other part of character (And having those abilities available quicker then achieving a full level first).

"Small beings can have small wisdom," the dragon said. "And small wise beings are better than small fools. Listen: Wisdom is caring for afterwards."
"Caring for afterwards ...? Ker repeated this without understanding.
"After action, afterwards," the dragon said. "Choose the afterwards first, then the action. Fools choose action first."
"Judgement" copyright 2003 by Elizabeth Moon
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Ayrik
Great Reader

Canada
6589 Posts

Posted - 15 Jan 2012 :  01:47:13  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I've experimented with different "Natural 20" options.

The default we usually adopt is an assumption that 20 always hits and always doubles whatever damage was rolled on the dice: ie; 2 x Weapon damage, damage bonuses from Str/etc still added but not doubled.

I've tried 20 = maximum damage, 20 = a free bonus attack, 20 = opponent loses an attack, 20 = roll on the infamous Critical Hit Tables, even 20 = player's choice from these options. We still tend to return to our trusty default, for consistent speed and simplicity.

We also assume 20 always hits (though for normal damage roll) even when the attack is "impossible" and would normally require 21+ to successfully hit. Likewise 1 = Fumble, pretty much the opposite effects ... although none of the Fumble Tables I've tried have ever been popular in my groups.

[/Ayrik]
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Old Man Harpell
Senior Scribe

USA
473 Posts

Posted - 15 Jan 2012 :  01:56:06  Show Profile  Visit Old Man Harpell's Homepage Send Old Man Harpell a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Zireael: Here is the base information on Split Statistics. Warning - this is a long post. This is a Nth-generation cut-and-paste, and does not include the numbers (obviously). Also, this is (I believe) Second Edition information, so YMMV:

Strength (Muscle and Stamina)

Muscle: Your ability to cause damage and bring your Strength to bear in short bursts.
- Attack Bonus (melee weapons)
- Damage Bonus
- Abilities requiring bursts of power (Bending, Breaking, Lifting)

Stamina: Your ability to move and bring your Strength to bear over a long period of time.
- Movement Rate (Walk, Run, Jump, Swim, Fly)
- Encumbrance
- Abilities requiring endurance

Dexterity (Aim and Balance)

Aim: Determines how well you can manipulate objects with your hands.
- Attack Bonus (missile weapons, finesse, touch)
- Severity of Fumbles
- Skills requiring hand control (Forgery, Lock Picking, Set/Disarm Traps, etc)
- Crafts requiring hand control (Music, Painting, Sculpting)

Balance: Determines how well you can control your body movement.
- Armor Class Bonus
- Saving Throws: Reflex
- Quickness and Initiative
- Skills requiring body control (Balancing, Climbing, Escaping, Jumping, etc)
- Skills requiring stealthiness (Hiding, Moving Silently)
- Performances requiring body control (Dancing)

Fortitude (Constitution and Toughness)

Constitution: Your ability to resist disease and death magic.
- Saving Throws: Fortitude (Health/Necromancy)
- Resist Toxins (Disease, Poison, Paralyzation, Petrification, etc)
- System Shock

Toughness: Your ability to sustain physical damage, and once damaged heal from it.
- Hit Point Bonus
- Resist Elements (Acid, Cold, Electricity, Fire, Sonic)
- Natural Healing

Intelligence (Knowledge and Reason)

Knowledge: How much information you can store in your memory.
- Number of Skills known
- Arcane spells known
- Skills requiring knowledge (Knowledge, Profession, Spellcraft)

Reason: Your ability to learn new knowledge, and see through falsehoods.
- Learn new Arcane Spells
- Bonus Arcane Spells (Wizard)
- Skills requiring reason and logic (Appraise, Decipher, Research, Use Device)

Wisdom (Intuition and Willpower)

Intuition: Your common sense and ability to be aware of what is around you.
- Bonus Divine Spells
- Skills requiring awareness (Heal, Listen, Sense Motive, Spot, Survival)

Willpower: Your mental strength, used to influence or resist mental attacks.
- Saving Throws: Willpower, Mind, Magic
- Skills requiring mental discipline (Concentration)

Charisma (Appearance and Leadership)

Appearance: Your physical beauty, how others see you.
- Physical appearance
- Reaction Bonus
- Skills requiring appearance (Disguise, Seduction)
- Fate, Fortune and Luck

Leadership: Your personality, likability and ability to influence and attract others.
- Bonus Arcane Spells (Sorcerer)
- Attract Cohorts, Followers and Henchmen
- Skills requiring leadership (Acting, Bluffing, Diplomacy, Gathering Info, Handling Animals, Intimidation)

- OMH
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
15654 Posts

Posted - 15 Jan 2012 :  06:47:24  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Okay, its not the same half-level thing that was being discussed on the Paizo boards (I have no idea if it was ever implemented in the final rules). It had something to do with adding half your second level's BAB to your primary levels BAB to determine your comabt effectiveness. In other words, it was a great way to 'munchinkinize' one of the major drawbacks of multi-classing (which you usually need to get those yummy PrCs).

My solution is to simply have a Martial Aptitude replace BAB, and people can hand-tailor their character any way they like, by putting points into it (just like a stat). In fact, if they wanted to really do it right, split it into MA (Melee Aptitude) and RA (Ranged Aptitude).

And screw PrCs anyway - they can accomplish the same thing with Feat-trees, without all that clutter. It was a great concept initially, but then it morphed into something unweildy. Just make certain feats only available to certain organizations and races (groups), and that would function in the way PrCs were originally intended.

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone

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Diffan
Great Reader

USA
3477 Posts

Posted - 16 Jan 2012 :  13:59:11  Show Profile Send Diffan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Markustay


Okay, its not the same half-level thing that was being discussed on the Paizo boards (I have no idea if it was ever implemented in the final rules). It had something to do with adding half your second level's BAB to your primary levels BAB to determine your comabt effectiveness. In other words, it was a great way to 'munchinkinize' one of the major drawbacks of multi-classing (which you usually need to get those yummy PrCs).

My solution is to simply have a Martial Aptitude replace BAB, and people can hand-tailor their character any way they like, by putting points into it (just like a stat). In fact, if they wanted to really do it right, split it into MA (Melee Aptitude) and RA (Ranged Aptitude).


The 1/2 level approach (in 4E) is the driving mechanic behind your defenses, attacks, initiative, and skills. For example, a 10th level Fighter would automatically get +5 to hit, +5 to his Fort/Ref/Will, +5 to his Initiative, +5 to his AC, +5 to all his skills (even ones not trained in). This keeps people on the same pacing with these very basic and simple practices that don't necessarily reflect your class. A rogue of the same level shouln't stink worse than the fighter for attacking by example. From there, you add in Ability modifiers, armor, weapon proficiencies, magic etc. I'm not really sure I've seen the +1/2 level mechanic in Pathfinder's finalized rules. There is some thing akin to this in Star Wars: Saga though.

quote:
Originally posted by Markustay


And screw PrCs anyway - they can accomplish the same thing with Feat-trees, without all that clutter. It was a great concept initially, but then it morphed into something unweildy. Just make certain feats only available to certain organizations and races (groups), and that would function in the way PrCs were originally intended.


PrCs should enhance your already gaining abilities, not supplant those aspects. First thing they need to do is do-away with a load of Prerequisites. Period. No more mechanical requirments for them except maybe a class or race if it's warrented. Second is to have more, less SUPER-POWERFUL features because this is where min/maxing get's ridiculous.

@ Ayrik: I like some of your examples and my use them with some homebrew rules I'm creating. For myself, I always consider a Natural 20 automatic success or Crit if it's an attack. I abolished confrim criticals in 3.5 for any natural 20 because you don't confirm natural 1s. I also like the idea of the attack doing max damage plus any other modifiers the weapon entails. So if you crit with a Longsword and normally deal 1d8+5/19-20x2 then it'll be 26 damage (13x2). It makes thing simpler instead of critical rolls doing less than a normal hit might do.

@ Old Man Harpell: While I think your break down of ability scores is really interesting and it's something I've never considered doing, does it become a bit too micro-managable? I mean, I personally don't see how you describe your character's appearance to have any sort of reflection of Charisma-modifier. An elf fighter could have an 8 in Charisma but still be a stunning or attractive individual. But they lack the social graces of communities outside of elves or act snobbish or be aloof.

4E Realms = Great Taste, Less Filling.

"If WotC were to put out a box of free money, people would still complain how it was folded."
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Old Man Harpell
Senior Scribe

USA
473 Posts

Posted - 20 Jan 2012 :  05:34:19  Show Profile  Visit Old Man Harpell's Homepage Send Old Man Harpell a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Diffan
@ Old Man Harpell: While I think your break down of ability scores is really interesting and it's something I've never considered doing, does it become a bit too micro-managable? I mean, I personally don't see how you describe your character's appearance to have any sort of reflection of Charisma-modifier. An elf fighter could have an 8 in Charisma but still be a stunning or attractive individual. But they lack the social graces of communities outside of elves or act snobbish or be aloof.


I admit it does involve some extra bookwork, as you have to travel up and down the attribute chart for what effectively becomes two separate attributes. And some attributes, the DM may simply say 'no, I can't see that'. I would never, for example, allow a wizard to Split his Intelligence - that's simply too much headache, and despite my earlier example, I would be hesitant to allow a sorcerer to do the same with his Charisma. The mechanics themselves appeared in, I believe (I may be misremembering) Unearthed Arcana for 1st Edition.

One of my players is playing a (human) Witch (Pathfinder's Advanced Player's Guide). She (the witch) has a Charisma of 14, which was promptly split into Leadership 10/Appearance 18 (the maximum drift). The player created quite an excellent history that beautifully explained why, so I allowed it. While a beauty, she is embittered, suspicious, manipulative, and trusts absolutely no one (as a quick encapsulation). Since Charisma isn't a necessary attribute for her class (Intelligence is), and since she has a good explanation why, I allowed it.

Your point on Charisma not necessarily having anything to do with Appearance is well-taken...Hitler proved that in a sick, cultish way, as well as others in history. I see it as just another way to explain certain traits about a character.

Another system that was introduced was that of 'Comeliness' (this might have been the mechanic in Unearthed Arcana I was thinking about), and the fellow who was (is, on occasion) my DM used this mechanic. Simply put, Comeliness is your character's physical attractiveness, expressed in a number that is completely divorced from Charisma. Thus, as in your elf example, that elf fighter could indeed be a radiant beauty, but her personality (to non-elves, most certainly), would be akin to having a discussion with a grouchy aurumvorax.

Comeliness would either be determined with a die roll, like the other attributes, or simply hash out with the DM what you think it should be, and why you think a score of X is justified (this is what I would be inclined to do were I to use this mechanic, especially since I use Point Buy, and would not want to have to force players to allocate Points specifically to their Physical Appearance as well as the others).
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Ayrik
Great Reader

Canada
6589 Posts

Posted - 20 Jan 2012 :  06:50:16  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Old Man Harpell

She (the witch) has a Charisma of 14, which was promptly split into Leadership 10/Appearance 18 (the maximum drift). The player created quite an excellent history that beautifully explained why, so I allowed it. While a beauty, she is embittered, suspicious, manipulative, and trusts absolutely no one ...

Hmmm. I see my ex has joined your gaming ...

But back on topic, the Comeliness attribute introduced in 1E Unearthed Arcana was a fairly detailed and greatly imperfect system, much abused by players and DMs alike. It was essentially an add-on seventh attribute, usually rolled up then modified from Charisma and other factors; in the end it was usually a sort of second Charisma stat which often fell to exaggerated extremes.

I've played with some DMs who used the Comeliness stat, some who didn't. One had devised an intelligent house rule which basically made physical appearance important only for first impressions; the fascination or disgust it might invoke would only affect any given individual once, lasting impressions would subsequently be formed more by Charisma (and actions, and gold) than by Comeliness. Although extremely comely characters might not be killed when encountering an orc band, they might wish that they had been.

[/Ayrik]

Edited by - Ayrik on 20 Jan 2012 07:00:24
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Old Man Harpell
Senior Scribe

USA
473 Posts

Posted - 21 Jan 2012 :  00:41:39  Show Profile  Visit Old Man Harpell's Homepage Send Old Man Harpell a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Ayrik

quote:
Old Man Harpell

She (the witch) has a Charisma of 14, which was promptly split into Leadership 10/Appearance 18 (the maximum drift). The player created quite an excellent history that beautifully explained why, so I allowed it. While a beauty, she is embittered, suspicious, manipulative, and trusts absolutely no one ...

Hmmm. I see my ex has joined your gaming ...

But back on topic, the Comeliness attribute introduced in 1E Unearthed Arcana was a fairly detailed and greatly imperfect system, much abused by players and DMs alike. It was essentially an add-on seventh attribute, usually rolled up then modified from Charisma and other factors; in the end it was usually a sort of second Charisma stat which often fell to exaggerated extremes.

I've played with some DMs who used the Comeliness stat, some who didn't. One had devised an intelligent house rule which basically made physical appearance important only for first impressions; the fascination or disgust it might invoke would only affect any given individual once, lasting impressions would subsequently be formed more by Charisma (and actions, and gold) than by Comeliness. Although extremely comely characters might not be killed when encountering an orc band, they might wish that they had been.


I am very glad I wasn't drinking anything when I read the first line of your post...

All of my players understand the ups and downs of having high attributes of a certain type, I realize that not every player does, though.

My son is even more vicious with his playing group than I am with mine - your observation about an attractive character and orc bands is even more true of his style of DM'ing than of mine.

A lot of it boils down to how big a role that physical appearance plays plays. Some, like the example you gave, use it only for first impressions, but I would argue that it goes a bit deeper than that - I can recall no romantic tragedies where the female protagonist is not attractive, or her appearance simply isn't mentioned. Most lechers will typically pursue the finest specimens of their gender proclivities first, all dependent on society, their chances, and so forth.

Sometimes, such things can be played for laughs (Macho Women With Guns comes to mind), but much of the time, physical appearance is a defining trait, and not just a 'starting kick' (if you will pardon my use of sports terminology). This is particularly true of bards, to say nothing of warriorettes in the stereotypical chainmail bikini (and the Realms has shown itself to support such attire, as Alias demonstrated).
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Jakk
Great Reader

Canada
2165 Posts

Posted - 22 Jan 2012 :  02:41:38  Show Profile Send Jakk a Private Message  Reply with Quote
This is a very interesting scroll... I admit to having done more than my share of rules-tweaking in my time, and I've been playing RPGs since 1982 (Tunnels and Trolls boxed set as a tenth-birthday gift).

quote:
Originally posted by Hawkins

<snip>I also suggest that you maybe read Trailblazer, a 3.x supplement that breaks down a lot of the math of the game.



I'd love to get hold of that book... but it's not on amazon.ca and Noble Knight Games is out of stock and says it's out of print too. Any other ideas on where a Canadian customer can find it online?

Edit: Not overly worried about this for now; I found it in PDF on DriveThruRPG.com.

Edit: Fixed typo.

Playing in the Realms since the Old Grey Box (1987)... and *still* having fun with material published before 2008, despite the NDA'd lore.

If it's comparable in power with non-magical abilities, it's not magic.

Edited by - Jakk on 28 Feb 2012 19:56:22
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Jakk
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Canada
2165 Posts

Posted - 28 Feb 2012 :  19:55:50  Show Profile Send Jakk a Private Message  Reply with Quote
To return this scroll to topic and refresh its content, there was a lot of speculation regarding D&D Next that it would be something of a "rules construction kit" providing a means to reassemble older editions with subsets of its game mechanics. This has since been backed away from, but they are standing by their statement of keeping the game as simple or as complex as desired. I'm really looking forward to the idea, but I just hope that they provide the right kinds of options for us... and on a more specific note, personally, I think Vancian casting and non-Vancian magic can coexist. Taking 3.5 as an example, I would use the standard PH wizard, but I would have sorcerers (and possibly clerics and druids as well) use the spell point system from Unearthed Arcana. Any thoughts on how well these systems work together? How does the balance work?

Edit: And by "balance" I mean "balance within the spellcasting classes" - if it's balanced with what a fighter or rogue can do, either it's not magic, or your fighter or rogue is doing it too. See my signature.

Playing in the Realms since the Old Grey Box (1987)... and *still* having fun with material published before 2008, despite the NDA'd lore.

If it's comparable in power with non-magical abilities, it's not magic.

Edited by - Jakk on 28 Feb 2012 19:58:00
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Diffan
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USA
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Posted - 24 Apr 2012 :  19:31:55  Show Profile Send Diffan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Jakk

To return this scroll to topic and refresh its content, there was a lot of speculation regarding D&D Next that it would be something of a "rules construction kit" providing a means to reassemble older editions with subsets of its game mechanics. This has since been backed away from, but they are standing by their statement of keeping the game as simple or as complex as desired. I'm really looking forward to the idea, but I just hope that they provide the right kinds of options for us... and on a more specific note, personally, I think Vancian casting and non-Vancian magic can coexist. Taking 3.5 as an example, I would use the standard PH wizard, but I would have sorcerers (and possibly clerics and druids as well) use the spell point system from Unearthed Arcana. Any thoughts on how well these systems work together? How does the balance work?


From what I've been reading, they're still going along with the Optional-modular approach with very basic things being CORE and branching out from that to include stuff individuals or Groups prefer. I very much doubt we'll get variants for CORE classes in the terms of providing either Vancian or Non-Vancian styles, however. From their L&L articles and blogs, they've (and by they I mean Monte) has made it very clear they'll be using Vancian spellcasting for Wizards and probably Clerics too. But they've also mentioned that there will be options a character can choose to obtain more consitant/at-will magic, probably something akin to Complete Mage's Reserve Feats. Too bad they're options as I hate spending character's limited resources on stuff they probably should be able to do in the first place.

quote:
Originally posted by Jakk

Edit: And by "balance" I mean "balance within the spellcasting classes" - if it's balanced with what a fighter or rogue can do, either it's not magic, or your fighter or rogue is doing it too. See my signature.



Balance is in the eye of the beholder and it varies from person to person, group to group. Some groups are prefectly fine with Wizards and other full-casters power at high levels because they paid the price for being chumps at low level play. Others feel that their non-magical characters should still be able to contribute equally as magical classes at high levels of play. Personally, I don't want my Fighters doing anything "Magical" at all, but I never thought their powers in 4E were magical in the slightest. They required brute strength, a big weapon, and close proximity to scary monsters to be effective. By that same token, my Invoker (think ranged-spellcasting priest) wouldn't dare get into the fray becuse he wasn't capable of handling big monsters with a weapon nor could he take the punishment of a few hits. So he stood in the back, summoned angels and blasted monsters with his radiant power AND shielded allies in the process. (man I loved that Invoker).


4E Realms = Great Taste, Less Filling.

"If WotC were to put out a box of free money, people would still complain how it was folded."
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Diffan
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Posted - 24 Apr 2012 :  19:44:00  Show Profile Send Diffan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
So I was reading some posts over at Paizo about what aspects we'd like to see in D&D:Next and the topic of Combat came up. Some hoped that combat would resemble that of 3E (and previous editons) where Powers were minimal or non-existant. From my own experience, I'd hope that there are some options for character to pick up powers while keeping the CORE attributes fun and enticing as well.

From that, we stemmed off of D&D:Next and back to the fundamentals of v3.5 Base Attack Bonus system. I feel it's greatly flawed, with iterative attacks making combat longer and, due to the math progression, somewhat pointless if those attacks rarely hit. And then it hit me, what if there was NO progression? And by that, I mean no Good, Average, Poor BAB. What if everyone's BAB scaled with their level, obtaining a +1 per level ratio? The catch is, those who are build to be in the thick of things or to use weapon-based combat are going to be better and get multiple attacks far more often than those who don't.

So for example, we take the Fighter: For him, nothing changes. He gets a +1 at every level and obtains multiple attacks at 6th, 11th, and 16th level. The only change is that the modifiers do not drop. So at 11th level, his attacks will be +11/+11/+11.

From there, we get to the main problem of the "Average" BAB. The changes here are that they still get the same +1 bonus per level but only one additonal attack at 8th level and then a third time at 15th level. This would mean Rogues, Monks, Clerics, Druids, and all the other 'mid-combat' guys would still be effective in combat but wouldn't have to jump through hoops at later levels when their BAB just stinks.

At last we come to spellcasters, who only get two measily attacks for their whole character progression (at 12th level).


But what does this man for the static AC? I mean, sure the first attack from a full-BAB guy is going to have a good chance of hitting, but then does the AC only become important in deterring all those other attacks? Should AC scale with the +1/2 level aspect of 4E so that it keeps up with multiple high attacks? This process also works for monsters too, so when they reach the 6+ HD, their attacks will be just as devestating.

Thoughts?

4E Realms = Great Taste, Less Filling.

"If WotC were to put out a box of free money, people would still complain how it was folded."
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crazedventurers
Master of Realmslore

United Kingdom
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Posted - 25 Apr 2012 :  00:33:09  Show Profile  Visit crazedventurers's Homepage Send crazedventurers a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Diffan
But what does this man for the static AC? I mean, sure the first attack from a full-BAB guy is going to have a good chance of hitting, but then does the AC only become important in deterring all those other attacks? Should AC scale with the +1/2 level aspect of 4E so that it keeps up with multiple high attacks? This process also works for monsters too, so when they reach the 6+ HD, their attacks will be just as devestating.

Thoughts?


If I misunderstand your point and the mechanics then please ignore my post as I am not au fait with 4E at all.

Are you saying that in 4E your AC is improved because of your level and not only because of the armour etc you are wearing? If so then I hope this does not make it into D&D Next as I can't see the point in increasing to hits and also armour 'bonuses' by level as well as they would cancel each other out. It would seem to me that you would have the same chance to hit a 'standard monster' at 1st level as you would do at 20th? Why bother with 20th level if the ratio of hits are the same and the only thing that is different is the amount of rounds it takes to finish off the opposition due to hit point increase (am assuming a simple die/level + con stat bonus progression here a-la 1E-3E and not something along the lines of dice plus con stat).

I would also want to see all attacks at full attack bonus, the minus 5 for each extra attack from 3.x is pointless and just slows the game down (especially with confirming criticals as an additional roll - I would much prefer no criticals in D&D Next).

Lets take combat back to basics, and keep it simple and make it quick.

Cheers

Damian

So saith Ed. I've never said he was sane, have I?
Gods, all this writing and he's running a constant fantasy version of Coronation Street in his head, too. .
shudder,
love to all,
THO
Candlekeep Forum 7 May 2005
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Diffan
Great Reader

USA
3477 Posts

Posted - 25 Apr 2012 :  06:20:17  Show Profile Send Diffan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by crazedventurers


If I misunderstand your point and the mechanics then please ignore my post as I am not au fait with 4E at all.

Are you saying that in 4E your AC is improved because of your level and not only because of the armour etc you are wearing? If so then I hope this does not make it into D&D Next as I can't see the point in increasing to hits and also armour 'bonuses' by level as well as they would cancel each other out. It would seem to me that you would have the same chance to hit a 'standard monster' at 1st level as you would do at 20th? Why bother with 20th level if the ratio of hits are the same and the only thing that is different is the amount of rounds it takes to finish off the opposition due to hit point increase (am assuming a simple die/level + con stat bonus progression here a-la 1E-3E and not something along the lines of dice plus con stat).

I would also want to see all attacks at full attack bonus, the minus 5 for each extra attack from 3.x is pointless and just slows the game down (especially with confirming criticals as an additional roll - I would much prefer no criticals in D&D Next).

Lets take combat back to basics, and keep it simple and make it quick.

Cheers

Damian



To answer the question about the levels adding to AC, yes. In 4E you start with 10 (like in 3E) and you add 1/2 your level (rounded down) and then start to add in armor, shield, blah, blah to get your AC. This 1/2 level aspect, however, is prevalent in most fundamental aspects of 4E as you also gain +1/2 level to hit, to your non-armor defenses (Fort, Reflex, Will), you Initiative, and ALL skills (even ones your not trained in). The general idea is that you don't just improve on one or two aspects as you gain experience because your experiencing a LOT of stuff like knowledge, combat proficiency, and general better understanding of the world when you adventure.

As for the point in why it levels, really it's to keep thing balanced over the course of the game. A first level fighter isn't going to ever beat a Pit Fiend based on the Pit Fiend's AC/level and the 1st level Fighter's level but a 20th level Fighter will have a good chance (near 50% or there-abouts) to hit a Pit Fiend. When the math came out, PCs were generally missing over well 50% of the time at high levels of play unless they started their characters with a 18 or 20 in their primary attack stat, which then dropped the percentage to approx 50%. That's why they came out with the Expertise feats, a bonus to hit with a specific weapon or implement that increased over your career. So a Fighter who takes Heavy Blade Expertise gains a +1 bonus to attacks with a heavy blade and it increases to +2 at 11th level and to +3 at 21st level.

Personally, I'd like things to be challenging at the level I'm, but balanced as well to avoid TPKs. And, of course, MORE challenging against things that are levels above me and less challenging against things that are levels below me.

For criticals, I'm happy with the Max damage approach of 4E. In 3E, a critical hit was just too swingy for my tastes and annoying when you added in the Confirm-Crit rules which I threw out with Nat. 20 rolls.

Combat should be fun and involved IF that's something the group wants in their games. Should it be SUPER involved like it was with 4E? Perhaps not, toning it down a notch or 3 wouldn't be all that bad but have those gamist-combat elements there anyways. Powers, attacks, and Stances that move monsters around the board or quick blasts of magical attacks that knocks targets prone or dazed or action points that gives characters additional abilities are all great things but supplemental points that can be removed at the drop of a hat should the group choose.


4E Realms = Great Taste, Less Filling.

"If WotC were to put out a box of free money, people would still complain how it was folded."
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crazedventurers
Master of Realmslore

United Kingdom
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Posted - 25 Apr 2012 :  21:42:16  Show Profile  Visit crazedventurers's Homepage Send crazedventurers a Private Message  Reply with Quote
One of the things I have been thinking about recently is tying in mythology to my Realms. Specifically to do with how unique creatures from myths have become 'numerous' under all the (A)D&D rule sets.

I am wondering how we went from The Minotaur, The Medusa and The Hydra (as examples), to (potentially) lots of them and whether I want to keep them as singular, unique creatures for the ongoing campaign. From a home-game design perspective I assumed this would be fairly easy to do but does this mean I should ignore the 'rules' and in-game premise that they are a normal monster with multiple 'copies' floating around Faerun? (I have only ever had a medusa feature once in a game in the 30 odd years of DM'ing, so that's a easy fix, but I have used Hydra's alot!)

I am toying with the idea of having a legendary version of said critter, but does that cheapen the effect? Does the Medusa Queen strike fear into the hearts of the PC's or does meta-gaming creep in and the players realise that she/it is simply a ramped up version of a normal medusa?

Should I have one hydra for each number of heads, or just one 12, 16 or 20! headed hydra in the campaign world?

Am wondering if legendary creatures are the way to go? When Orcus gets mentioned the players ears prick up and they check their character sheets for anything they have that will save them from it! I want the same effect when the Medusa is mentioned, I just can't quite see how I am going to get the effect and whether I need to bother with it at all and rely on Orcus, Grazz't and Demogorgon et al as my unique's?

So my questions are:

Do one of a kind monsters mean anything special to you and your players?

Should taking on The Medusa be a pinnacle moment in the adventurers career?

How would you go about creating the mythology for making a 'commonplace' monster into something unique?


Thanks

Damian

So saith Ed. I've never said he was sane, have I?
Gods, all this writing and he's running a constant fantasy version of Coronation Street in his head, too. .
shudder,
love to all,
THO
Candlekeep Forum 7 May 2005
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Ayrik
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Canada
6589 Posts

Posted - 25 Apr 2012 :  23:13:44  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
As you point out, a monster which only ever appears once is already unique, characters might safely assume that tales about an entire species are just the elaborations of fanciful bards. Then again, characters are usually in for an rude shock when they encounter a nasty monster they thought was already dead. I can imagine the looks of horror around the table when the PCs slay the tarrasque and learn they've really angered a second tarrasque. Killing the last (and noblest) survivor of a legendary species can be a decent moral conundrum for heroes.

And, as you also point out, there is always the option of using legendary exemplars of the species; ubers, champions, scions, purebloods, smarter, faster, bigger, uglier, whatever your monster manuals prefer to call them.

The 2E-era Realms had countless "Beast Cults" which each venerated a legendary member of the species. Most of these were actually treated as entry-level demigod sorts, they could grant their handful of priests/worshippers minor spells and even a unique special power or two. Lurue the Unicorn Queen was originally described this way. The Cult of the (Dead) Dragon has many beast cult cells, there have also been many beholder cults, a kraken cult, and a wererat cult. A medusa cult seems perfectly acceptable, indeed almost a requirement in a Faerūn populated by the scaly peoples of the sarrukh.

The 3E-era Realms was really more about making unique monsters through a mix-and-match combination template-stacking approach. Not just any medusa, but an excessively overstatted fiendspawned vampiric shadow medusa with elemental powers and a selection of prestige classes.

[/Ayrik]
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
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Posted - 29 Apr 2012 :  21:02:44  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The best system I have seen for charisma was in Chivalry & Sorcery - it was a stat derived form all your other stats. Picture something along the lines of using the stat-bonuses from your other stats to find your natural charisma. To me, this makes more sense then a random roll.

That game also had stats for Appearance (looks) and Bardic Voice (voice quality), so there were at least two other stats that Charisma derived from (besides the ones D&D has).

You also got bonuses from height and weight (actually... you got penalized for being overweight... very un-pc, I know). The height bonus doubled for leadership (which was derived from Charisma + combat ability). Very comprehensive (and difficult to play) rules, but also the most accurate representation of such abstract concepts I've seen in an RPG.

I don't like a rolled Charisma stat - charisma is a combination of things. I also absolutely HATE that it takes the place of 'Presence' in 3e, charisma and presence are two very different things, IMO. A thousand-year-old elf should have a humongous presence, but could be an ornery old racist (so fairly low charisma). D&D simply does not allow for outside-the-box situations.

Presence, by the way, is like 'bearing', but more esoteric - its how the universe warps itself around you. Some people have it, and some people don't, and some people have it a LOT. Picture 'presence' having weight, and reality was cloth stretched tight between two lines. Some people walk across the cloth without any sign, for others it stretches a bit, but with some folk reality itself is twisted and bent to conform to their footsteps - the landscape changes around them as they walk, and things lean toward them, or are pulled-in.

Thats what they turned Charisma into in 3e, and it doesn't work for me. I always thought most Paladins were a bunch of self-righteous a-holes, but thanks to 3e rules, they all have to be sweet and charming.

*Bah*

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone


Edited by - Markustay on 24 Dec 2017 19:24:53
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Markustay
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USA
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Posted - 24 Dec 2017 :  19:22:55  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Bringing this Back. I forgot this thread even existed, but I searched 'Game Theory' and found the exact topic.

Back when the 4e 'Presents' books were released (those two 'previews' they had the audacity to charge money for), there were actually quite a few concepts I liked. unfortnately, most of those they seemed to have dropped as development finalized. One I abslutely loved that gelled well with my own thinking was the three you' - that person was made up of three main 'cosmic ingredients' - The Mind, the soul, and the body. I merged this with holistic stuff for Body, Mind (spirit), & Soul. Your body is your physical form, and contains the Id (reptilian brain in psychology). Its very primitive, and is made-up of the 'plane-stuff' (every being, on every plane). The Prime Material differs from the others in that it has this whole 'birth' thing, where the three are fused as one being. Soul is what it sounds like, and I've repurposed 'spirit' to mean the mind of the particular incarnation of a person. Thus I've also folded the concept of reincarnation into all this, by saying the 'mind' (spirit) gets but one life (ignoring D&D Rez rules right now). The soul is eternal, and can have many lives, so many minds can be attached to it over the aeons. This also ties into the RW theories about 'familiar spirits'.

The preview (4e D&D) books covered this subject in regards to undead - how each undead type can be made up of one or two of these things still, but not all three (thus, their 'undead' status). For example, a vampire would have a body and a spirit (mind), but no soul. An Animus (2e), or what EB refers to as 'undying' probably have dead bodies, but still both a soul and a spirit. In fact, the 4e preview books even referred to the 'motive' (life) force in a physical body as the animus. I thought this was a great, systematic way of approaching the subject, because it makes it far easier to adjudicate rules regarding various undead types (what effects what).

Now, in another thread I started discussing energy types, and how we can apply that to new rules. Part of this would be adding-in a 'life' energy type, but it would also double as magic. Mana is overused in games, but it might be the easiest to term to use. Prana might be closer to what I need, but it doesn't sound very cool. 'Qi' is too Asian, so it really only works in an OA setting, IMO. Anyhow, no matter what we call it, by manipulating THAT energy type, you could get both priests and necromancers, depending on if they were additive (Preservers) or subtractive (Defiler) types.

And you would use the same system across the board. Heat & Cold would really be the same energy type, just a matter of whether you were adding or subtracting from it. The reason why I brought up the stuff about undead and Body, Mind, & Soul is because I was thinking that instead of the five base energies we have in D&D, it might be fun to expand the list to 15, with five associated with each type of 'self'. I also associate the three 'selves' with Aether (the Ethereal) for 'mind', and the Astral for 'soul' (the Material plane is obviously 'Body'). The only annoying part is that D&D say that a person's persona (their 'spirit', or Mind) gets stored in the Astral, which should be wrong. Souls should go into the Astral, get judged, and then 'move on' to the higher (or lower if you suck ) planes. Spirits - the person's one-shot 'life' they had on the prime Material needs to go to the Ethereatl, for all this to work. But I can just say that in the D&Dverse, this got 'broken' by the Gods (the estelar did NOT want the primordials to be able to gain any sort of advantage over them).

So in the realm of 'Body', we would have five energy type - the standard five (probably) we have in D&D. Acid, Electrical, Fire, cold, and sonic. Except that kinetic energy is an energy type, and likely the one used for many 'Force' type spells. We'd have to steal one, then, from this list to add to the others.

So now we have Soul and Mind - what energies can associated with these types? We might be able to use both prana and Qi here - say prana is the Soul-version of Qi, which would be associated with the body. But wait... that means we'd have to take another from 'Body' to balance things. Hmmmm... maybe only have three energy types? That would make Nine, three for each (and then we have the 'rule of three' thing I like so much). And if we add 'conditions' to the three within the three - additive, subtractive, and static - we could get the three of three of three - VERY 'cosmic'. I could build a whole magic system off of that.

And suggestion about other energy types? Psychic jumps to mind (pun intended). I don't want this to look to much like 4e, but there might be something from there we can mine for ideas.

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone


Edited by - Markustay on 24 Dec 2017 19:23:58
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Diffan
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USA
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Posted - 25 Dec 2017 :  10:24:27  Show Profile Send Diffan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Thats a really cool concept, one I utilized for my own personal RPG I'm making. It uses 3 main stats (Body, Mind, and Spirit) to which skills and abilities stem from. It's a lot simpler though as to be quick and easy. But the premise is certainly a cool one.

4E Realms = Great Taste, Less Filling.

"If WotC were to put out a box of free money, people would still complain how it was folded."
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
15654 Posts

Posted - 25 Dec 2017 :  17:32:41  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I realized when I awoke this morning there was one major promise with my 'three sets of three' premise - the Material planes NEED to have five, or at the bare minimum four, because of the elemental planes. I've also seen a system that separated Wood from metal, so we'd have six. Still not enough, though.

So now I am thinking, we really don't need balance like that. We could have five energies for the Material Planes, and maybe 2 for the Soul/Astral, and then just 1 for the Ethereal (although I'd love to swap the ethereal and astral planes at this point, but that's a bit too firmly set in D&D cosmology). This would give us EIGHT, which corresponds to the number for Chaos, which also works for me.

So I think I'd have...

 Energy        Material 
         Body   
Corrosive       Earth             
Electrical     Air/Wind
 Thermal        Fire
 Kinetic        Water 

     Mind (Spirit)
  Qi        Chakra Points
Psychic       Ectoplasm

        Soul
 Prana        Incarnum


Water has now been given kinetic energy, which would include anything in the 'force' category (including things like Bigby's Hands and Tenser's Floating Disc), as well as sonic because it would include anything based on vibration. Not sure though - it was the easiest route, but perhaps I should put Kinetic with 'Air', but then I'd have to put Electrical with water, which is another change (but if I am building a totally different magic system, why should that matter?) Does Water + Electrical make sense? Water is a good conductor, and air is not. The problem is, Air is usually associated with 'Sky' (and Wind), and those are both associated with lightening/electrical. I'm not sure here.

The Mind ones are self-explanatory: Qi might make more sense under 'body', but a body is just a physical vessel for Qi - it doesn't exist once a person is dead, hence me putting it under 'Mind' instead (plus, it takes mental discipline to do all those cool things with Chi/Ki). Prana isn't such a great word - not really perfect - but close enough - it would be 'life itself'; the 'divine spark' which is both the soul, and the basis for all (raw) magic. I could use the term 'Mana' instead, but then I'm not getting the 'soul' part... hmmmmm.... Prana... Mana... I may be onto something here. Maybe I could call it 'Ana', and say if its internalized its called Prana, and if its externalized its called Mana. That could work. Also, it would come in 'flavors', based on emotional states, and just as someone could specialize if 'spheres of magic', one could also specialize in emotions (using them, harnessing them, etc.). I have some ideas for 'imprinting' left-behind emotional states on inanimate objects. No Power Rings though.

So I think I'd end up with a system where every type of caster (Arcane, Divine, and Psionic) were all forms of Benders/Shapers, and you could have sub-categories of specialization, and even specialize in additive or subtractive within an energy type (and like existing specialist rules, you'd get better at the one while getting worse at the other, so some folks might choose not to specialize and be more 'flexible', over being a munchkin).

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone


Edited by - Markustay on 25 Dec 2017 17:39:38
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