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16  Community / License to Improvise / Re: New kind of class? on: July 19, 2015, 09:43:38 PM
Are you meant to have rage basics before entering the class?

  I batted it around as a way of creating a sort of common root for the whole array of 4e barbarian inspired classes but eventually found it wasn't necessary mechanically so I dumped it in favor of easier accessibility. (in my head I'm also thinking Mad Skillz would be in effect - class skill lists are a suggestion not a definite fence-line for how you can spend your skill points)

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I'm also wondering why people would take this when it's going to mess up their progression to their gamebreaker?

  Ideally because gamebreakers are less appealing than a bundle of effects that let you express a theme you enjoy on a round-to-round basis compared to a once a session supreme moment of cool. The odds of seeing your dream theme embodied in a renown class go up as more renown classes are available. But beyond various hybrid builds you just might be playing a short campaign where life beyond level 10 was never that relevant to begin with. I'm still considering dropping the career level requirement to 2+. One level of base to get your start and your core ability and boom, jump on in.

  That said, thinking on the long term interactions I'm feeling better about some of the more powerful abilities in the first test run being within tolerances. I knew there'd be a little leeway just because the A,C,E sequence might be B/M/S feat-like, but still don't add to feat tree counts.
17  Community / License to Improvise / The Windrunner on: July 19, 2015, 06:07:30 PM
Ok, first attempt~

Windrunner [Renown Class]
  The windrunner is a figure of romance, a quick-witted warrior who is equally quick on his feet. Using speed and accuracy rather than armor, the windrunner bets their life on their ability to control position and distance throughout the fight.
  In your campaign, a windrunner could be…
•   A tribal warrior in tune with the spirits of the air.
•   A tireless messenger who has learned a few tricks along the road.
•   A hedonistic swashbuckler seeking revenge against the muscular louts that murdered his kin.

  Power: Mobility in combat.
  Party Role: Combatant.

Class Features
  Requirements: Career Level 3+, Heroic Renown 1+
  Favored Attributes: Dexterity, Charisma
  Melee Specialist: Your Base Attack Bonus for melee and unarmed attacks is higher than for your ranged attacks (see class table).
  Class Skills: Acrobatics, Athletics, Impress, Notice, Resolve, Ride, Sneak, & Survival
  Skill Points: 4 + Int modifier
  Vitality: 12 + Con modifier per level

Class Abilities
  Strike of the Shifting Winds: At Level 1, your base speed increases by 10 ft. When you hit with a melee attack that would add your Strength modifier to the damage, instead of adding your STR mod, you may add +1 for each square you have moved on foot this round to a maximum of +10 (e.g. if you have moved 30 ft. this round when you hit, you may add +6 to the damage roll).

  Windrunner’s Rage: At level 2, you may enter the Windrunner’s Rage stance a number of times per scene equal to your class level.

  Windrunner’s Rage (rage stance): You may not enter this stance while wearing armor with a hard construction save (see FC, pages 155 and 174). While in this stance you gain a +3 dodge bonus to Defense and a +3 bonus to Reflex Saves. You ignore difficult terrain and may ignore adjacency with up to 1 enemy when taking move actions. You may remain in this stance even while prone. When you leave this stance you become fatigued.

  Dance on the Red Wind: At Level 3, other characters may not add their Strength modifier to damage rolls affecting you.

  Tethering Strike: At Level 4, Each time you spend an action die to boost a melee attack check or melee damage roll, if the attack hits the target is also rooted until your next initiative count.
  (rooted characters have all of their move speeds reduced to 0 and may not take 5-foot steps. This does not cause flying characters to fall even if they cannot normally hover.)

  Endless is the Wind: At Level 5, each time you defeat one or more enemies with a melee attack you may take a standard move as a free action. If at least one of those enemies was a special character you also recover vitality equal to your Charisma score.

Table Paragons.1: The Windrunner
Lvl MAB RAB Fort Ref Will Def Init LS Lgnd Abilities
 1   +1  +0  +0   +2  +1   +0  +1  +0  +1  Strike of shifting Winds
 2   +2  +1  +0   +3  +2   +1  +1  +0  +2  Windrunner’s Rage
 3   +3  +2  +1   +3  +2   +1  +2  +1  +3  Dance on the Red Wind
 4   +4  +3  +1   +4  +2   +2  +2  +1  +3  Tethering Strike
 5   +5  +3  +1   +4  +3   +2  +3  +1  +4  Endless is the Wind


18  Community / License to Improvise / New kind of class? on: July 19, 2015, 06:19:02 AM
  I have some 4th ED D&D books I'm carrying around for light reading and was thinking that while I've turned some of their paragon paths into feat chains in the past, there comes a point were madly populating feat chains raises the system mastery requirement for floating feats to an uncomfortable level... so what about some other way of 'porting those themes/mechanics into Fantasycraft. Paths aren't terrible as a framework, having 5 abilities, but the rate they are acquired (every other level) loses some of that focused progression I was trying to enable. Right now I'm pondering 5 level "mini-classes" with one ability per level (A, B, C, D, E) with power in those slots being directly comparable to a base class. So sorta a base class cut down to it's 5 level preview. The D slot could even draw on base class D slot options. A, C, and E would be be roughly analogous to a 3-feat chain. I'd set these classes up t have a lot less choice compared to a base class -

  Don't have working example yet. Still deciding on what kind of minimum level it should have and what sort of requirements it can have to build a foundation to support the short class abilities list.
19  Community / License to Improvise / Re: A Comprehensive Critique and Critically-Considered Correction of Crossbows on: July 18, 2015, 09:58:36 PM
The major issue with focusing the changes on bows rather than crossbows is that crossbows are weak not only in comparison to bows, but in comparison to everything. The problem is not that bows are too strong, but simply that crossbows are too weak. And because crossbows are so weak, nerfing bows down to a level where crossbows truly are a reasonable alternative even with no buffs to crossbows themselves, you'd only make bows essentially useless as well. Because the proposals of just making longbows exotic and giving bows load 1, removable with Bow Basics, just don't cut it.

  To be clear - a small nerf to bows is a change that stands on its own because bows are extremely effective. I think a lot of players/GMs could see the merit entirely separate from looking at crossbows. It may also serve to set better expectations for what ranged weapons should be doing vis-ŕ-vis all other attacks in the game  Wink. But. It was a suggestion that was never intended to 'cut it' on its own Smiley. I also reject your slippery slope entirely - no one is going to make a convincing case to nerf bows down all that far in absolute terms - again entirely independent of crossbow performance. Not just because of iconic expectations but because actual historical examples are fairly impressive.

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Nerfing bows for entry-level users doesn't make crossbows any more appealing for anyone, and if Bow Basics undoes the nerfs then it certainly doesn't make crossbows any more appealing for non-entry-level users.

  Reducing the discrepancy from the top is a good step to getting your basic min/max evaluation occasionally pointing to the crossbow - if bows are broken good, no quest for parity is going to stop until crossbows are also broken good - and that really doesn't serve the system as a whole well. In other words comparing crossbows to bows isn't a good argument for change because bows themselves are not baseline.

  The changes I suggest weren't picked out of a hat  Smiley. Currently Bow Basics offers a static benefit (+2 AP) that crossbows don't need or utilize in the vast majority of practical situations. Further the existence of that benefits lets bows easily reach practical maximums of AP which directly strips crossbows of a working niche. Removing that is as important as what it's replaced with. Since most crossbow improvements focusing load, even a 1 action reduction makes the altered feat MUCH more valuable to a crossbow user over 2 AP (while the bow user gets nothing but a net loss of 2 AP).

  I also see the place for a cranks/bandolier analogs, but in a shoot-then-melee environment which the whole combat system caters too (Seriously, realistic initial engagement ranges are far to large to be dealt with on a 5' grid in most cases) load is almost a meaningless drawback to begin with other than it blocks Angry Hornet. How many fights are you actually playing out where surprise round-to-adjacency takes more than 3 rounds?

  I encourage you to find approaches to greater parity that don't hinge on reducing load. Average crossbow damage isn't ever going to match bows and it shouldn't - you have bows for that. Fill a different niche.
20  Community / License to Improvise / Re: A Comprehensive Critique and Critically-Considered Correction of Crossbows on: July 18, 2015, 08:45:16 PM
Benefit: When you wield a bow ignore the load 1 quality or reduce the load quality by 1 if it is 2 or greater. You also gain a stance:
Change that to "When you wield a bow you reduce its Load quality by 1.  This may reduce Load to 0."  Less tangled.

  I started there (give or take a word), I just didn't feel completely confident that there would be zero confusion about "load 0" blocking or not blocking the Angry Hornet feat chain...

The prone thing does serve to differentiate footbows from other types

  Well technically foot bows MUST be used from prone position. Shooting while prone is an area where I'm inclined to favor cinematic realism (and less rules text) over vigorous simulation.
21  Community / License to Improvise / Re: [Notebook] We ask only... for WAR! on: July 18, 2015, 11:14:07 AM
  This system is designed so it can 'port in mechanics from the L5R card game pretty casually (taking inspiration from follower cards (units), personality cards (character feats/class abilities), and action cards (mostly battlefield tricks). I'd certainly be willing to review it for changes that would make it easier to integrate with other house rules for running battles and managing larger campaigns. Its pretty abstract already so hopefully it  can be tuned pretty easily to reflect/account for other battlefield considerations you'd like to emphasize.
22  Community / License to Improvise / Re: A Comprehensive Critique and Critically-Considered Correction of Crossbows on: July 18, 2015, 10:57:56 AM
  Well, following up on the strategy of toning bows down slightly to narrow the performance gap between bows and crossbows I would suggest~

  Longbow becomes an exotic weapon.
  All bows gain load 1 if they don't already have the load quality.
  Bow Basics benefit now reads:
Benefit: When you wield a bow ignore the load 1 quality or reduce the load quality by 1 if it is 2 or greater. You also gain a stance:

  Net result is~
  Completely unskilled archers have good reason not to mess with longbows at all (exotic weapon penalty).
  Forte-but-not-feat archers have a load time pretty much cutting the firepower in half (and making Bow Basics functionally required before taking Angry Hornet when using bows).
  Bow Basics is now MUCH more appealing to crossbow shooters (making repeating crossbows valid for Angry Hornet!) and removing the AP benefit from the feat makes that aspect of crossbow stat-lines more valuable.

  As prone is representative of "down on the ground in a way that serves you well" rather than any specific belly-down or butt-down configuration I think it's reasonable that heroic archer types can still shoot while prone - envision them on their backs with their feet more or less in the direction of the target.
23  Community / License to Improvise / Re: New Guns on: July 18, 2015, 10:35:18 AM
  Well, I'd argue 9mm is a 'good caliber'... for a smaller shooter Smiley. Still hoping to get a smooth heft/recoil mechanic for dealing with firearms in contemporary and sci-fi settings.
24  Community / License to Improvise / Re: Potions: making them more usable? on: July 14, 2015, 03:00:38 PM
  Keep in mind there is a very dangerous trend that the more you can benefit from something, the more you MUST benefit from it.

  In the case of healing potions you rapidly go from occasional source of breathing room or a rare spectacular save/squeaking by with 3 vitality to "don't leave home without (a six pack of) 'em"...
25  Community / License to Improvise / Re: [Notebook] Seizing Initiatve on: July 02, 2015, 03:50:27 PM
  My current thinking is to rephrase the "shooting uphill" as a -2 penalty to attack characters with a higher initiative rather than a +2 defense bonus (same effect, hopefully cleaner text).
26  Products / Spycraft Third Edition / Re: [DEVELOPMENT] Let's talk a little about art... on: July 01, 2015, 01:36:25 PM
  I guess in a serious, grounded espionage environment for the most part spies should be/are invisible. I mean there may be some call for a high society couple (long dress and tux) if you're infiltrating an embassy, and there are a few general types of guard/mook NPC you have to overcome (the rent-a-sentry, the cartel heavy) but workaday spies are pretty low key.

  All the really pops out at me is the vision of the lightly dressed, heavily sun-glassed version of the North American White-Guy in the tropics/desert as we see so many overseas CIA agent/handlers presented. The guy who is sensibly attired for the sun/heat, but clearly ain't a native to those climes.

  And maybe the ubiquitous "I'm a government guy" dark suit.

  That and tactical-turtlenecks, but that goes without saying Wink.
27  Products / Fantasy Craft / Re: Mysterious Freelancer Revealed! Plus Spellbound Status Report! on: July 01, 2015, 02:00:39 AM
  I doubt they would hide solid information if they had it Smiley.
28  Community / License to Improvise / Re: A generic trick about synergy on: June 30, 2015, 07:27:02 PM
  I'm wondering if it might be better to allow success with skill A to allow skill A to be used for a check normally made with skill B. Partially because I'm slightly nervous about the trick allowing a character already at max ranks on skill be to exceed what is normally possible with a skill A/4 bonus.

  So after a successful bluff, you may then bluff your way through a bargain check targeting the same character.
29  Community / License to Improvise / Re: [Notebook] We ask only... for WAR! on: June 17, 2015, 07:19:41 PM
  Ok, I've completely re-written the Unit Creation Rules for greater clarity while adding a few new options Smiley. Hopefully that's significantly easier to use!
30  Community / License to Improvise / Re: [Notebook] We ask only... for WAR! on: June 17, 2015, 05:30:48 PM
This is a bit of thread necromancy but my Sunchaser Campaign is starting to use these rules and we're having some trouble building new units to properly measure the things we've purchased/acquired (Pahnoru Forces, Cannons, Raptor Cavalry) using the generation rules in this system.

  Cool. Glad its of some interest to you Smiley.

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First of all, what does Glory do and how do you generate it?

  Glory is a designer-picked value when creating a unit profile. You could adjust any existing unit's glory up or down to create a new type of unit.

  Glory serves three roles in the system.

  Gating Access: As mentioned in the first post Glory acts as a gate, limiting the best units to the most established commander/heroes~

• You may only choose units with a Glory equal to or less than your highest Renown rank.
 
  High Glory units are the reward for becoming a respected part of a faction or hero of the people.

  Cost Discount: Because the unit's value is split between Glory and cost, the higher the Glory, the cheaper the unit is for the punch it's delivering.

  Unit Size: For roleplaying and general setting sanity, it gives you an idea how many people are in the unit. There's no direct mechanical effect, but it's helpful for the GM describing forces to players when they are up on the hill looking down at their army or an invader's troops.

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  The current formula eaves Glory undefined as a stat and I'm having trouble making the Cost, Value, and Glory table work with units. For example, the Samurai Infantry is listed as Cost 10 but the table on page 1 suggests their cost should be 16? (6 Force + 6 Force + 4 for trick.) Some easier to understand formulas for determining Cost, Value, and Glory would be greatly appreciated, or a better explanation of the formula already given.

  The 16 value is split up between 10 cost and 6 glory. Basically, they work cheap for the right badass commander.

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Also, does Troop Size have anything to do with any part of the system? It's automatically generated based on Glory but I'm not seeing it have any impact on a fight at all. Is it just there to show you how many guys are in a unit for other purposes? There doesn't seem to be any impact on having a force of 500 versus a force of 8.

  Yup! If one of the 99 knights rides up to your gates to parley/bluster a bit with only 8 ogres following him... Those ogres probably aren't ill-equipped peasants... But the 2,000 goblins camped on the ridge over there might be.

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Our Sunchaser group would really appreciate any more clarification you can put on this system. It's so far the only war-system that matches up with "Spend Reputation to get an Army to fight The Crone", but it's unfinished and we're arguing about how to interpret stuff.

  Hopefully this helps Smiley.
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