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Author Topic: A problem with conversion  (Read 400 times)
Salvatos
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« on: July 25, 2013, 12:21:08 PM »

So we decided to convert an old campaign we never finished. I'm doing the NPC stats roughly to get the feel rather than using the conversion tools strictly.

My problem is that I end up with a lot of special characters in encounters and the XP count is going up really fast. Even with a measly 50-60 XP per head/mob, I end up with an "extreme" encounter (210 XP) right out the door because there's too many individuals rather than mobs. We've never played on this scale yet (level 15); should I expect a wipe out?

Should I lower the NPCs' TL? Or will I have to make them weaker or remove some of them?
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Ares
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« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2013, 12:47:21 PM »

Be sure not to overload those special npcs and keep their health low enough
You could voluntarily include a weakpoint (achilles heel). It's a lot of fun to find the weak spot of npcs (i.e. no Acrobatics and low Dex means he'll be tripped easily, no Athletics make him easy to grapple, no Sense Motive makes him easy to taunt, etc.)
Low Will saves lend itself to threaten attacks, low Fort makes him susceptible to subdual.

Those weaknesses will also bring you back some XP and lower the overall cost of the encounter

 
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Plan B: Use more fire
Creamor
Salvatos
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« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2013, 01:14:28 PM »

I did give most of them Health I or II only to speed up combat, and leave most of their abilities at 10 if they weren't relevant to their "build" (going up to 16 at most). I'm a bit afraid of making all of them irrelevant individually and ending up in a situation where none of them can do significant damage even though taken together they're supposed to be super tough.

Looking at the bloat, a bunch of it is coming from powers or skills that aren't going to be relevant in the fights although they're characteristic enough to be kept in the stat block (e.g. a fire elemental's immunity to fire against a group that isn't going to use fire damage either way), so hopefully that will alleviate the issue.
Weak points shouldn't be too much of an issue since most of them will have next to no Signature Skills.
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Ares
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« Reply #3 on: July 25, 2013, 01:30:59 PM »

Then I can tell you, you won't have to worry to much about your PCs.
Fire immunity is not necessarily reactive: If the elemental ignites parts of the scenery it can be quite dangerous for the npcs to engage in melee.
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Plan B: Use more fire
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Deral
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« Reply #4 on: July 25, 2013, 04:12:31 PM »

I've not messed around too too much with the OGL conversion- why are so many of them Special characters? I figure, if you're going to have low health on each one anyway, they'd be just as difficult to defeat as a standard, but I'm not real clear on the situation.
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Salvatos
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« Reply #5 on: July 25, 2013, 04:21:51 PM »

Mostly they're named or ranked characters. One officer with a group of guards, one spellcaster in the patrol, one strong/unique monster guarding something... Suddenly having 4 of each in one place wouldn't make sense.
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Deral
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« Reply #6 on: July 25, 2013, 04:36:44 PM »

Mostly they're named or ranked characters. One officer with a group of guards, one spellcaster in the patrol, one strong/unique monster guarding something... Suddenly having 4 of each in one place wouldn't make sense.

Of course not, but you can build a unit with character and make it standard- instead of having a mob of them have just one standard- if you have 4 players, sure it's worth 1/4 the normal XP, but in the rest of the crowd it's a tougher but similar enemy (especially since you can build it knowing what you want). Just because you have 1 of an enemy doesn't mean it has to be special, and repeated fights with Specials, or fights with multiple specials can become downright mind numbing, or can load on the XP (you're already giving them a fight roughly as difficult as just 1 standard character, but xPlayers the XP).

Basically, the 1-per-player part of Standard Characters isn't mandatory, if you have 4 players, you can have 1, 3, 10, 17- at the end you just add'em up, divide that number by the number of players, and multiply the XP by that amount. I think that'd be the best solution- make the officers higher XP costing Standard NPCs instead of Specials- add Tough, Veteran, or Cagey to them to prolong the fight or make them more difficult.
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Coyote0273
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« Reply #7 on: July 25, 2013, 09:01:31 PM »

What Deral said. I ran into that problem myself, but then combat got bogged down by too many tough bad guys. So having tougher standards made it a whole lot easier.
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Salvatos
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« Reply #8 on: July 26, 2013, 10:59:02 AM »

Well, it turned out that they utterly destroyed everyone and everything in their way with barely a scratch. I really have the hardest time making balanced encounters with this system.
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