If I edit things out, I'm not trying to take you out of context, I'm trying to direct my comments and keep things readable. I am verbose
I had not considered that, but it is worth doing so. At first glance I have a few concerns with doing that. 1 is that it makes the steps considerably more powerful than they are, and I had been intentionally trying to limit their power.
I'm not insisting on a power level, but the feat level step was easy because it's a common unit of power in Mastercraft, it's comparable to existing paths, and it let me use feats as steps. The Charge power can almost be built of a combination of the Charging Basics tree and the Cleave tree. Of course, that would leave out the wall-smashing goodness you could incorporate from Jack.
2 is that the powers in Mass Effect are very narrowly focused. When you first gain one, it gives you a new ability to use, and investing further in it improves that ability, but has virtually no effect on any other part of the game. I was trying to duplicate that behavior.
I'm not sure I follow. The tech armor I posted has activate and explode buttons, just like the ME3 power. The rush is all stance, though I guess you'd have to activate the multiattack feats. I'm not sure that having a bit more buttons for the player to push is a bad thing though. Tabletop combat is going to be slower and making sure players have an active option each round. If this isn't what you mean, sorry.
Lastly, as they are the paths are all fairly consistent with each other. But if some grant feats and other don't or grant different numbers of feats, it loses some of that consistency.
Still that's all just my initial reaction, those may not be problems, and even if they are, they are probably not insurmountable.
I think we lose some consistency but we gain easier balancing (I can firmly say 3 of the steps of tech armor are no more powerful than feats
). But please, take everything I post as opinion. I'm no expert at this stuff.
Stripping the priest down to make a single base class for all six mass effect classes is probably the way to go. It does mean that a ME soldier would have a lower BAB than a MC soldier. That can be fixed although.Also not a bad idea. My first reaction there is that even with feats, Priest only gets something like 12 steps, and in the video games, over the course of the game you get the chance to fully invest in 5 or 6 abilities. If people are comfortable with only being able to fully invest in 2 abilities, then I suppose there's no problem there. In that case, each step of the powers would need to be more powerful than they are. Or, as an alternative, these paths could have less than 5 steps. If each only has 3, then the Priest derived class could fully invest in 4 powers.
In ME2, Sheppard can max 5 powers and squadmates can nearly max 3. In ME3, Sheppard can max 8(!!!) powers, squadmates 4 with a bit left over. In ME3 multiplayer, each character can max exactly 4 powers. I think 4 is a reasonable number to shoot for.
I think a combination of limiting each power to 4 steps and trading some priest abilities for more path steps is going to do it. The 2/11/19 and 6/9/12/15/18 are both possibilities. Given the thinness of the ME classes, you can almost remove all the priest abilities. Anything not removed of course will need to be changed.
I also don't think there's any reason to limit the "gain a step in a power" feat to being a one time only deal. If our steps are close to feats in power, that's self balancing too. The extra power feat (gain a new power and take the first step) might need to be once only. Maybe not if we're allowing any character to gain powers, rather than trying to simulate Sheppard's bonus power.
It may be nice to move some things, like ME2's selectable 4th level evolution, out to tricks. Reave and Channel are essentially Warp tricks, while Lift, Throw, Slam, and Pull should all be tricks on the same power. I'd argue that Combat Drone and Sentry Turret could share a power too and all of the ammo powers might be stances or tricks.
I'll work on hacking up the priest. (There's a line that will be repeated should I ever be arrested.) I think we have enough tools to accommodate those who want a power or two and those who go power crazy.
What made each power tree its own interest? You might still have your Engineer alignment but other specialties might simply grant access to the Tech and Combat trees.
I'm not sure what you mean here.
You made an alignment for each ME class. Also make one for each tree. This would allow those with non ME classes to have powers too. They purchase the alignment, then use the extra power and gain a step feats. That has the nice side effect of restricting non-ME classes to one tree.
Regarding shields, I think base shields = vitality is the best solution. I think defensive powers should be split among Defense, DR, and Damage Resistance. If barrier needs a non time based timer, it might negate a certain number of hits before it stops working.