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Pen and Paper

Discussion in 'Gaming and PC Discussion' started by Coyote, Apr 27, 2012.

  1. Jon

    Jon The Demon Mayor Admin DLP Supporter

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    [​IMG]
     
  2. Hawkin

    Hawkin Minister of Magic

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    That made more sense!
     
  3. Jon

    Jon The Demon Mayor Admin DLP Supporter

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    What time AEST are you guys playing? Depending on the time I can join in.
     
  4. redlibertyx

    redlibertyx Professor

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    You mean Kirk Langstrom?

    In something related to the thread, I've been workshopping an idea for a Waterworld-esque campaign. So the player party would own and operate some sort of boat and skip around a largely aquatic environment. And so a lot of the encounters would be sort of FTL-esque. That is to say there'd be two maps: (a) the ship-scale map where the players are fighting pirate ships and giant squids and (b) the player-scale map where they fight the actual pirates or squid tentacles. I'm still picking through the playable races (aquatic elves instead of forest elves, maybe lizard folk or kappas as playable races) but I really like the idea.
     
  5. Probellum

    Probellum Death Eater

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    So, been playing a game of PbP 5E for awhile now and have come to a couple conclusions.

    1: I absolutely hate, hate, hate the Proficiency modifier system. I get that they wanted to streamline things, so players wouldn't have to keep track of BAB, and Save Bonus, as well as Skill Ranks, but I think they went a bit too far in combining them all into one system. It's dumbed everything down, and makes i feel like you have less options available to you, especially when it comes to Skills. You can get a total of +11 to a Skill Roll, at 20th Level. That's it.

    I get they probably lowered a bunch of DC's and crap too, because of it, but t just feels so...mundane. I like rolling a d20 with +19 on a Skill Roll at low levels. It makes me feel like my character has accomplished something. And you can get +19 or +20 or w/e on a roll by the time your like, 4th level. At level twenty, it'd be atleast +35.

    I like that high number. it makes me feel all giddy inside.

    2ndly: The fact you have to choose between either getting your ability score bonus every four levels, or swapping one of the bonuses out for a feat. Or all the bonuses out for feats.

    Only being able to get a feat every four levels? When some builds are just so goddamn Feat intensive? You have to take like 3 different feats to make using a Glaive viable, and in doing so sacrifice the ability bonus you'd otherwise get at those levels.

    Again, I feel like they went a bit overboard in streamlining.

    All that said, I do like the other aspects of the system, and all the classes are pretty good. Alot of classes are really 3 in One. For example, the Paladin can be a typical Paladin, a more Nature Themed Warden-esque character, or an Avenger. (Or even a Blackguard, if you break your oath)
     
  6. Hawkin

    Hawkin Minister of Magic

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    1PM (UTC-5). So that would be +15hours for AEST...which means 4AM (AEST). However, I have all of my players so far. If someone desist, I'll let you know.

    ---------- Post automerged at 10:46 ---------- Previous post was at 10:43 ----------

    I think it's actually really good that they removed skill points and all that crap. I makes it much faster and easier to introduce someone to D&D but I also feel that it reduces the chance of min-maxing a character so much that he becomes broken. Having +20 at level 4 was plain stupid and would force the GM to make NPC just as broken to pose any sort of challenge in a skill contest with the player. It creates very 1 dimensional character. Now, even though you are proficient, someone who is not still has a chance to counter your attempt at persuasion for example or intimidation.
     
  7. Typhon

    Typhon Unspeakable

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    This.

    I've played in campaigns where social skill resolution to a conflict was all but completely off limits to all but one PC, because they specialized to a point where it was either that or make every challenge something that they could breeze through. Limiting that sort of bullshit is nice.

    Specializing is good, but it shouldn't break the game.
     
  8. Probellum

    Probellum Death Eater

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    I won't deny it can break things, but if you specialize n something, you should be able to fucking do it better than others. And it's not just Social Skills. Things like Acrobatics (Which used to be split into like, three different skills) can be really damn useful in combat. Perception is widely regarded as the most important skill, so as to find clues and avoid ambushes.

    If you focus on those stats, you should naturally be able to pass most obstacles associated with them, because it means you're character is was above average there. Changing things around so that every enemy or obstacle that comes the player's way accounts for such things is cheap, because then it means the average for the world is much higher than it should be.

    Let's say the average for a skill is 5. A player has 15 in that skill, way above average. To account for this, the GM makes it so every monster or encounter has a way to avoid this, or even has the same skill at the same level. Well, if every person the character meets is just as good at that thing as them, they're not really above average any more, are they?

    And the thing is, the Proficiency System limits you to what? 4-6 Skills? Well, what if I wanted to have a bit of skill in say, Arcana, but not to the same point I'd have in Survival. You just can't do that any more, either.

    I get what they were trying to do with Proficiency, but they failed imo. They wants to avoid such scenarios with the +20 to X Skill at Level Y, and went to far in restricting it.
     
  9. Hawkin

    Hawkin Minister of Magic

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    So, you'd prefer to have a broken character that requires specific challenges that cannot be overcome by anyone else but that character. It's stupid and boring for the other players. Hell, we had something of the sort recently in our game of ASOIAF with @enembee, the guy was so broken combat wise that enembee had to create enemy just as broken to pose a challenge. Result: even the other combat oriented players (who had a more rounded up skill set) could barely make a dent in those NPCs.

    Dealing with an overpower player is not as fun as you make it sound.
     
  10. Typhon

    Typhon Unspeakable

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    I see what you're saying, Probellum, and agree to some extent. Within reason, that specialization is good. But in a world where you're playing with people that you aren't really friends with, at least not the day to day/RL sort of friends, I think the system for 5e is much better.

    Because min-maxing happens. It just does. And with good role playing, participation, etc., it's fine to a certain extent. But, for instance, if I play a sorcerer who has a Cha of 20 at level one and specializes in bluff, fully skilling it and maybe even taking a feat and/or a trait for it, then you get the sort of retarded character who, in conversation with normal guards, can kill someone for kicks in front of them and talk their way out of it with a decent roll.

    So then there's a decision to make for the GM - do I up the skill of the enemies, or not? Not doing so will see the player continue to break the game, as often as not, and doing so makes it impossible for those who are just average at the skill to handle social interactions, much less below average.

    And that's not even touching on the fact that to make this broken character, the player has sacrificed combat skill (usually). So, as often as not, that player is breaking one aspect of the game and proceeding to play on their phone in the others because to break the game they had to gimp themselves.

    So yeah. I've had some great times in Pathfinder, but unless you're an established group or good RPers or whatever, 5e is just better to me. In some ways it is oversimplified, and it can be exploited like everything else, but a lot of the game breaking stuff is gone, which is pretty damn nice.
     
  11. Probellum

    Probellum Death Eater

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    ...That's pretty much entirely misrepresenting what I said. In fact, I said don't do that. In my opinion, it's even worse than just having a broken character, because it sacrifices the believability of the setting.

    Specialization is good. Can it be taken too far? Yes. Is taking it too far a problem? Also yes. But keeping Specialization within the realms of possibility, while allowing for players to eke out just a tiny bit more in some cases, is fine. Desirable, even, because it allows each player to feel like their character is essential within the group.

    My +20 to X Skill at Lvl 4 Character was pretty insane for that, but the +20 didn't make him unbeatable in that area (Though I'll admit, it comes a bit close) and I could have taken it even further with a couple different options. And tbf, that campaign was a Highpowered Gestalt Game, so insanity was expected from the onset.

    In another game, this time a PF one, I have a character with +15 Diplomacy because it's centered around a politics heavy setting. It's high skill score, and the character is Level 3, but that +15, while making it quite a bit easier to navigate the social encounters, hasn't entirely cut it. I still have to essentially roll a 10 or higher to actually achieve much of something, but even if I roll a 2 or 3, i didn't actually fail.

    That's what should be aimed for. Being able to excel at a particular aspect, without particularly breaking the game.

    You know, a lot of people hated on 4e, but I never really encountered the problem of anybody breaking the game in such a manor like that.
     
  12. enembee

    enembee The Nicromancer Prestige DLP Supporter

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    So your problem with 5e is that the numbers don't go high enough?

    I hear the DBZ RPG lets you go over 9000.
     
  13. Hawkin

    Hawkin Minister of Magic

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    Get the feat : Skilled (+3 proficiency)

    No, it represents exactly what you are saying. Someone who put all of his stock into one aspect of the game. While the system are different and I won't go into that, the principle is the same. You have one character who is so above average that you need completely specialized encounter(challenge/puzzle/combat) to actually make them interesting for said character or to actually make the encounters relevant to the rest of the group. No one likes to stand around doing nothing while the warrior charges forward and kill all the enemy.

    The system could be broken, hence it is not a good system.

    You fail to understand my point. We don't care what the actual score is. You could have +25 in Diplomacy. The question is: what's the NPCs diplomacy at and what is the other PCs diplomacy at? If by boosting your diplomacy so high you forced the DM to design encounters that are actually impossible to succeed for the other PCs, than you have broken the system.

    While it might seem less aggravating in term of skills like diplomacy vs. combat, the idea is the same. You broke the system. You forced the DM to create something that only YOU can pass with moderate success. à

    Trust me, I understand the need to be special. That's the core of playing RPG game. You want your character to be unique and have interesting mechanics that are relevant to your group. Guess what, you do in 5E. As soon as level 1 in fact. But it's not because of your proficiency so much as the whole system being more balanced. Let's play with actual numbers to illustrate my point.

    You want to play a politic savy wizard; go ahead, pick the noble background and the wizard class. Invest in charisma and intelligence. Boom. Doesn't mean you'll be able to convince everyone at the snap of your fingers. It'll mean it will be easier. And you are better than most. The warrior in your group, unless he took a background that granted him proficiency in persuasion, will have a -2 malus minimum for those check at level 1. You have +3 CHA, +2 Prof. Warrior has +1CHA, +0 PROF. Tada +5 vs. +1. If you don't want to noble background, pick human an grab that Skilled Feat mentioned before, or any other background that gives you persuasion.

    The DCs are set in accordance to those changes. You don't see DC35+ anymore. DC25 is really hard to break, even later on. Say you increase your CHA at level 4 for +4. Good job, you're now standing at +6 for your persuasion. That's 6 times the skill bonus of the warrior (in that example). How can you tell me you don't excel at it? Yes, the warrior might get a lucky roll ((18+1)) and trounce your ass in diplomacy ((You 10+6)). Perhaps he had a lucky streak and knew just what to say to that NPC. Or perhaps you were in a bad mood and came across as aggressive to the NPC. However, most of the time you'll probably roll higher than anyone else on your group for those check.

    It doesn't mean it's impossible for them to succeed.

    EDIT: NINJA!
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2015
  14. Probellum

    Probellum Death Eater

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    ...You....you're not reading a damn thing I'm saying are you? Like, fuck, I keep acknowledging that breaking the game is bad. Making it so that it's impossible for any other character beside your own to do this one thing because the GM upped the difficulty is bad, but I'm of the opinion the GM shouldn't do that in the first place.

    No. I am not wasting a Feat on a measly +3 when they're so sparse and I have to give up an ability bonus for it. In every possible situation there is something better I could use that feat for.



    What I've been sayin this whole goddamn time is that the skills are too fucking dumbed down in 5e. I'm not saying the 3.5 version is better. I keep saying that breaking the game is bad. What i am saying is that the Proficiency System is not the way to fix it.

    And f the GM is making encounters that can only be overcome from one single angle, that GM is bad. Near every encounter should have multiple avenues of success, whether it be bluffing, negotiating, combat, sneaking or just plain immobilizing via spells.

    Honest answer? Yes. The way things are now, they're too luck based, especially in the beginning levels. I've already had several parties in different games all die within the first 4 levels because their roll would continuously fail to meet the DC's, whether for Skill Check, or Attack Rolls, even on results of 12 or 13. The PC's then get killed in quick succession because 5e makes lowlevel characters extremely squishy.

    My other main point is the constraint. I'm resigned to 4 or 6 skills at Chargen, and can never put any kind of focus or versatility in any other skill, ever, for the rest of the game. Not unless I waste a feat on it, which is just much too expensive to do.
     
  15. enembee

    enembee The Nicromancer Prestige DLP Supporter

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    Then clearly skills aren't that important to your character concept?
     
  16. Probellum

    Probellum Death Eater

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    If you're in any way shape or form inclined towards optimization, then taking a feat for +3 to a Single Skill over the +2 to an Ability Score (Which results in a +1 to anything from Attack Bonus, to Several Skills, and your Spell Save DC) is just plain not worth it.

    Let's say I put the +2 in my Dex. That's a +1 to my AC, my Attack/Damage Bonus for Finesse Weapons, My Reflex Save, and Acrobatics, Stealth and Sleight of Hand. All together way more than the +3 to one single skill.
     
  17. Hawkin

    Hawkin Minister of Magic

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    I'm on my phone so I'll comment on your other posts later but: Skilled = become proficient in 3 skills of your choice or tools.
     
  18. enembee

    enembee The Nicromancer Prestige DLP Supporter

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    Why would you be?
     
  19. Lamora

    Lamora Definitely Not Batman

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    There's a rule under proficiency which lets you become proficient in any skill or tool provided you spend 1gp and hour a day practicing it for 250 days.
     
  20. Hawkin

    Hawkin Minister of Magic

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    I wanted to point that out but I couldn't find the relevant passage! Glad I didn't imagine it.