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 STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)

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Garthanos
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Sat Apr 28, 2018 10:04 pm

Chris24601 wrote:

Wizardry is what smart characters who lack the strength or reflexes to be lethal with a sword or bow. Their attack spells are about as dangerous as a skilled heroes’ bow attacks. An arcanist’s feather fall and a monastic’s slow fall both use the same mechanics... but one uses Acrobatics and the other Arcana.

Does this have a problem with ALL things coming from basically 1 skill for the magical... and things coming from multiple for the martial? Do you allow the martial types to be more skilled in compensation?

_________________
Born To Be Kings and Heros -- From the Ashes Phoenix
“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” - Lazarus Long via Robert Heinlein.

One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Sat Apr 28, 2018 10:06 pm

I have been fairly annoyed with the fighting man being the "unskilled" for some time now.

_________________
Born To Be Kings and Heros -- From the Ashes Phoenix
“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” - Lazarus Long via Robert Heinlein.

One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Sat Apr 28, 2018 10:11 pm

Some of your utilities read as Skill Powers, and some as practices and some just plain powers. A friend of mine was commenting that in his design by not doing as stringent of categorization he made things much easier.

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Born To Be Kings and Heros -- From the Ashes Phoenix
“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” - Lazarus Long via Robert Heinlein.

One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Sat Apr 28, 2018 10:15 pm

Chris24601 wrote:
A base effect that improves with resource expenditures is the default mechanics for the game. Focus is essentially what you burn for ‘encounter powers’. Surges are the currency of ‘daily powers’ and ‘action points.’ (and rituals... nearly all the rituals cost a surge to complete).

The different currency pools is very interesting.

Chris24601 wrote:

The core concept for most of my magic is that it’s an alternate path to the effects that mundane effort can produce. Skilled heroes can use focus and surges to pull off effects on par with magic.

Wizardry is what smart characters who lack the strength or reflexes to be lethal with a sword or bow. Their attack spells are about as dangerous as a skilled heroes’ bow attacks. An arcanist’s feather fall and a monastic’s slow fall both use the same mechanics... but one uses Acrobatics and the other Arcana.

The problem has always been its very easy for most to imagine just about anything under the guise of magic... where as the mundane effort has limits we either understand (or even exaggerate) based on real world rather than opening it up to the legendary or mythic.

_________________
Born To Be Kings and Heros -- From the Ashes Phoenix
“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” - Lazarus Long via Robert Heinlein.

One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Sun Apr 29, 2018 7:17 am

Garthanos wrote:
Does this have a problem with ALL things coming from basically 1 skill for the magical... and things coming from multiple for the martial? Do you allow the martial types to be more skilled in compensation?
Its not really an issue. Most rituals have completely defined effects. The only thing that Arcana affects is casting time. A dunce without any training might need an hour to go through all the procedures a ritual entails while a wizard skilled in Arcana can pull it off in half that time or less (an epic level master Arcanist could pull off such a spell in a minute or five). Spellcasters also do not have the ability to learn every spell in the game... indeed, learning one specific spell is a utility, just like the Combat Engineer, Fortify Position and Master Plan (all of which produce specific benefits in excess of someone without those utilities can produce... combat engineer for example more than 10 times as effective as the actual expected amount of material a laborer using hand tools is capable of).

Most skilled utilities also have defined effects and there are a whole series of universal utilities (available to all backgrounds) that let you use different ability scores than normal for your skills (Ex. Nothing to See Here lets you use Presence in place of Reflexes for Stealth checks as you are literally so good at bluffing and looking like you belong there that viewers just don't question why you're there and don't even remember it as anything worth notable).

"Martials" or the Skilled Archetype as they're called in Terrors & Tactics also have options that mean they generally need only Strength or Reflexes to pull off most physical tasks and their next highest score to be effective is either going to be Intellect (if they have Tactical focus), Wits (if they have Wary focus) or Presence (if they have Daring focus). Each of the focuses also allows additional benefits (ex. daring can reuse certain presence-based actions like Create Diversion and Gain Advantage without the usual penalties for using it more than once in the same battle while tactical uses their focus score; a number that will likely range from 3-9 depending on level; for the Aid Offense and Aid Defense actions instead of the usual +2 bonus).

Garthanos wrote:
I have been fairly annoyed with the fighting man being the "unskilled" for some time now.

Hasn't been an issue with my system since very early on. First, everyone gets the same number of skills and the fighting man classes have either Strength or Reflex as their primary ability (i.e. used for attacks) and then either Intellect, Wits or Presence as their secondary ability (used for everything else) so they're going to have at least one good mental score.

Second, the list of skills has been cut way down so they're pretty broad; Acrobatics, Arcana, Culture, Deceit, Engineering, Fitness, Insight, Intimidate, Medicine, Nature, Persuade and Stealth. All characters get proficiency in three of these to start... two from their background and any one of choice. Humans either get +2 to any three skills or an extra proficiency in one skill and +2 to another. The typical human hero starts with proficiency in a third of all the available options.

Also worth noting is that, instead of being determined by a skill (though Fitness; which keys off the Endurance ability score; can assist) climbing, jumping and swimming aren't skill checks on their own, but set speeds the character is capable of (with a Fitness check needed only if the terrain exceeds their ability) and governing attribute for those is Strength or, if you're a skilled PC with the swift combat style you can use Reflexes-1 in place of strength. Spider climb might let the wizard treat all climbing terrain as normal, but with their -1 STR they're only going to be climbing 1 pace per round while the 4 STR fighter can advance two paces up a slippery rock wall without needing to make a check and with no utility use at all. If they have the Up the Walls ability they can climb the same sheer surface as Spider Climb can and at equal speed as the wizard.

Garthanos wrote:
Some of your utilities read as Skill Powers, and some as practices and some just plain powers. A friend of mine was commenting that in his design by not doing as stringent of categorization he made things much easier.
Utilities are any non-combat related ability that exceeds normal skill use or progression. Some are powers, some allow you to use skills in non-standard ways, others just give you bonuses to checks because a number of skills get extra effects, some downright mythical, if you succeed by 5 or 10 and a +5 bonus makes those possible to reach at earlier levels just by taking 10.

Garthanos wrote:
The problem has always been its very easy for most to imagine just about anything under the guise of magic... where as the mundane effort has limits we either understand (or even exaggerate) based on real world rather than opening it up to the legendary or mythic.
Honestly, I'm not worried about how other game systems do things.

In mine, by rules as written, a starting strong tactical skilled hero in armor can leap a twenty foot chasm or climb anything short of a literal frictionless vertical surface without making a check. They can jury rig an entire AIRSHIP out of spare parts in just eight hours or a boat or wagon in minutes (with the Rapid Jury Rig utility) without help without making a check. They can speak multiple languages fluently, know the cultural significance of Riverhold's Festival of Petals (and how to pass as one of the priests who performs the opening rites) and how to survive in the wilderness, track game and train beasts.

And they still have another utility (two and another skill selection if human) plus their actual archetype/class benefits yet to further define their abilities.

If you're a skilled hero, you start at AMAZING and progress from there.
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Sun Apr 29, 2018 8:58 am

Chris24601 wrote:


Garthanos wrote:
The problem has always been its very easy for most to imagine just about anything under the guise of magic... where as the mundane effort has limits we either understand (or even exaggerate) based on real world rather than opening it up to the legendary or mythic.
Honestly, I'm not worried about how other game systems do things.
Basically just pointing out how the design paradigm of magic has classically been problematic, it seems you are very much aware of the issues.
Chris24601 wrote:

In mine, by rules as written, a starting strong tactical skilled hero in armor can leap a twenty foot chasm or climb anything short of a literal frictionless vertical surface without making a check. They can jury rig an entire AIRSHIP out of spare parts in just eight hours or a boat or wagon in minutes (with the Rapid Jury Rig utility) without help without making a check. They can speak multiple languages fluently, know the cultural significance of Riverhold's Festival of Petals (and how to pass as one of the priests who performs the opening rites) and how to survive in the wilderness, track game and train beasts.

And they still have another utility (two and another skill selection if human) plus their actual archetype/class benefits yet to further define their abilities.

If you're a skilled hero, you start at AMAZING and progress from there.
cheers


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Born To Be Kings and Heros -- From the Ashes Phoenix
“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” - Lazarus Long via Robert Heinlein.

One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Sun Apr 29, 2018 11:13 am

Incidentally from your sig;

change a diaper - competency is presumed.

plan an invasion - Culture and Insight skills, possibly Engineering if a siege is involved, Master Plan utility and tactics specialization; not to mention the Captain class.

butcher a hog - Nature skill.

conn a ship - Seamanship utility (+5 to all ship-related tasks... equal to level 7 proficiency in any relevant check) or a combo of Nature (navigation), Acrobatics (balance) and Fitness (extra effort when lifting, climbing or jumping).

design a building - Engineering skill.

write a sonnet - Persuade and Culture skills.

balance accounts - competence with math is presumed. Culture for any obscure tax laws.

build a wall - Engineering again.

set a bone - Medicine skill.

comfort the dying - Persuade or just roleplay it.

take orders - no skill needed.

give orders - Persuade or Intimidate (depending on style); also the whole shtick of the Captain class.

cooperate - rules for “aid the strong” and “aid the weak”

act alone - most any PC can be self-sufficient if you build for it.

solve equations - basic math is presumed. Arcana is functionally math on the theoretical physics level and Engineering covers just about anything else.

analyze a new problem - Insight skill.

pitch manure - Strength, though the Fitness skill makes it easier.

program a computer - not really relavent to the setting, but Arcane spells are essentially programs that run on the Arcane Web so Arcana would be the closest.

cook a tasty meal - presumed competence, maybe Insight if not following a recipe and Nature if dressing game before cooking it.

fight efficiently - each class is essentially ‘how to fight most efficiently with the ability scores you have.’

die gallantly - more of a roleplaying consideration, but heroic surges generally keep you from being ganked by a random arrow.

Specialization is for insects - note that insectoid Beastmen are a valid player species too.

* * * *

It should be further noted that a human could begin with proficiency in more than half the full skill list if they spent their starting utilities on extra skill proficiency. Just enough to cover every task above if you go the nice-guy route to give orders and get by with your basic Strength and Agility instead Fitness and Acrobatics. You could also fudge the Fitness with some class abilities.

For the record I would build this omnicompitent individual as a Strong Daring Captain with proficiency in Acrobatics, Arcana, Culture, Engineering, Insight, Medicine and Nature and +2 to Persuade, the clever tricks of Push the Limits and Guide the Fight, the basic tactics specialization and the Mobile Harrier and Recover Momentum combat stances.

And that’s a STARTING character in Terrors & Tactics.

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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Sun Apr 29, 2018 3:41 pm

Chris24601 wrote:
Incidentally from your sig;

change a diaper - competency is presumed.

plan an invasion - Culture and Insight skills, possibly Engineering if a siege is involved, Master Plan utility and tactics specialization; not to mention the Captain class.

butcher a hog - Nature skill.

conn a ship - Seamanship utility (+5 to all ship-related tasks... equal to level 7 proficiency in any relevant check) or a combo of Nature (navigation), Acrobatics (balance) and Fitness (extra effort when lifting, climbing or jumping).

design a building - Engineering skill.

write a sonnet - Persuade and Culture skills.

balance accounts - competence with math is presumed. Culture for any obscure tax laws.

build a wall - Engineering again.

set a bone - Medicine skill.

comfort the dying - Persuade or just roleplay it.

take orders - no skill needed.

give orders - Persuade or Intimidate (depending on style); also the whole shtick of the Captain class.

cooperate - rules for “aid the strong” and “aid the weak”

act alone - most any PC can be self-sufficient if you build for it.

solve equations - basic math is presumed. Arcana is functionally math on the theoretical physics level and Engineering covers just about anything else.

analyze a new problem - Insight skill.

pitch manure - Strength, though the Fitness skill makes it easier.

program a computer - not really relavent to the setting, but Arcane spells are essentially programs that run on the Arcane Web so Arcana would be the closest.

cook a tasty meal - presumed competence, maybe Insight if not following a recipe and Nature if dressing game before cooking it.

fight efficiently - each class is essentially ‘how to fight most efficiently with the ability scores you have.’

die gallantly - more of a roleplaying consideration, but heroic surges generally keep you from being ganked by a random arrow.

Specialization is for insects - note that insectoid Beastmen are a valid player species too.

LOL... in real life I feel humanity has become awesome on the whole less because individual versatility than because of specialization. However the lack of broad knowledge filters we seem to have  makes people vulnerable to hoaxes which play on emotions  are also because of lack of versatility (both are of value)

Quote :

* * * *

It should be further noted that a human could begin with proficiency in more than half the full skill list if they spent their starting utilities on extra skill proficiency. Just enough to cover every task above if you go the nice-guy route to give orders and get by with your basic Strength and Agility instead Fitness and Acrobatics. You could also fudge the Fitness with some class abilities.

For the record I would build this omnicompitent individual as a Strong Daring Captain with proficiency in Acrobatics, Arcana, Culture, Engineering, Insight, Medicine and Nature and +2 to Persuade, the clever tricks of Push the Limits and Guide the Fight, the basic tactics specialization and the Mobile Harrier and Recover Momentum combat stances.

And that’s a STARTING character in Terrors & Tactics.


Attempts to build Lugh in 4e ended up being a rogue though it somewhat distorted his fighting style which was more exemplified by a spear wielding barbarian.

And yes it missed his Warlord aspect which it sounds like your Captain definitely has.

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Born To Be Kings and Heros -- From the Ashes Phoenix
“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” - Lazarus Long via Robert Heinlein.

One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Mon Apr 30, 2018 6:41 am

The Captain is indeed the Terrors & Tactics equivalent to the Warlord. I like the name better because etymologically speaking its one of the oldest titles out there... it simply means "head" which also makes it basically "Chief" in another language.

In additional to the Strong/Swift/Berserker style, Daring/Tactical/Wary focus and Combat Specializations that all skilled characters get, the Captain's abilities are Clever Tricks (special minor actions that provide advantages), Team Player (which allows any positive benefits they receive from one of their attack powers or a clever trick to instead be given to one or more of their allies) and Inspiring Words (allows allies you've given a Clever Trick benefit to the chance to Rally/regain Edge).

I consider them to generally be the most survivable of the classes for solo play due to their ability to buff themselves if no allies are present and the ability to heal in mid-fight as effectively a free action if needed... falling under the "able to act alone" from the list above.

Now other classes can certainly be built to fight independently, but the captain does it without any special build required.
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Mon Apr 30, 2018 8:02 am

Chris24601 wrote:


Now other classes can certainly be built to fight independently, but the captain does it without any special build required.

Warlords in 4e often were pretty dependent on allies to do interesting things.... I wanted more martial controller style maneuvers for them even a control build where they manipulated enemy into doing what they wanted, things which induce more friendly fire or intimidate them (perhaps with psychic damage output)  or sucker them into movement etc. The roles allowed focused design but didnt always do service... Heck the argument that the guy with the itty bitty weapon ought to be more controller hamstringing and disabling enemies as they run passed them and only sometimes doing spiked damage seems tenable.

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Born To Be Kings and Heros -- From the Ashes Phoenix
“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” - Lazarus Long via Robert Heinlein.

One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Mon Apr 30, 2018 8:06 am

Captain has very old origins hence why Tolkein used it no doubt...

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Born To Be Kings and Heros -- From the Ashes Phoenix
“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” - Lazarus Long via Robert Heinlein.

One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Mon Apr 30, 2018 11:09 am

For martial control you’re looking at the Acrobat or Sharpshooter... or at least multi-classing with it.

Multi-classing is a specialization with basic (available at creation) and expert (available at level 6 or later) tiers.

Basic tier gives you limited functionality. For example... multi-classing into Captain gets you one of their clever tricks (full Captains start with two and gain extra ones for free at 3, 8 and 13) and team player (so you can give it to an ally).

Expert tier gives you roughly what a level one member of the class has. The expert tier for Captain gives a second clever trick and Inspiring Words for example.

One thing I used to keep multi-classing balanced is that the class role features are pretty cleanly siloed into minor actions. The Captain’s tricks and Edge restoration are minor actions. The Defender’s taunting mechanic is a minor action. The Acrobat’s flurries (auto-hit conditions) are minor actions. If you want to use the role abilities of another class you have to stop using your normal role abilities while doing so.

This is also why I didn’t put any limits on how much you can multi-class... because it won’t add more power, just more options.
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Tue May 01, 2018 6:15 am

I definitely like the idea of role functions being an opportunity cost.


This is a power conceived with a Hector "Controller" Warlord in mind.

It's a classic body shield after you convince them it's an actual attack of opportunity.


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Born To Be Kings and Heros -- From the Ashes Phoenix
“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” - Lazarus Long via Robert Heinlein.

One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Tue May 01, 2018 11:04 am

The one problem with that power is that unless your own attack stat is abysmal, its pretty much worse than a lot of other powers because first you have to hit (60%-ish) and then the enemy has to hit (even with the +4 its still only going to be in 70-75% range for accuracy because monster accuracy is generally lower than the PCs) and monster basic attacks rarely do much more a PCs basic attack will.

That sort of maneuver sounds more like defensive utility (or specialization in Terrors & Tactics); as an interrupt to you or an adjacent alley being attacked you make a X vs. Y check on a different adjacent creature and, if successful, you can swap the target’s position with the other and they become the target of the attack. I’d make it an encounter ability in 4E or cost a focus in T&T (though reactions that require checks are pretty atypical... free strikes do flat damage in order to speed up off turn actions for example).
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Tue May 01, 2018 6:54 pm

Chris24601 wrote:
The one problem with that power is that unless your own attack stat is abysmal, its pretty much worse than a lot of other powers because first you have to hit (60%-ish) and then the enemy has to hit (even with the +4 its still only going to be in 70-75% range for accuracy because monster accuracy is generally lower than the PCs) and monster basic attacks rarely do much more a PCs basic attack will.

Its actually also subject to some class features ... which add psychic damage to the one who you caused to hit their friend and ones that enhance the distance of the moves and shifts. It should be quite worthy for the build actually designed for. I am not sure about the scaling yet.

It is directly analogous to a Mage power, but like other classes its potency is often in class feature modifying it.


Chris24601 wrote:

That sort of maneuver sounds more like defensive utility (or specialization in Terrors & Tactics); as an interrupt to you or an adjacent alley being attacked you make a X vs. Y check on a different adjacent creature and, if successful, you can swap the target’s position with the other and they become the target of the attack. I’d make it an encounter ability in 4E or cost a focus in T&T (though reactions that require checks are pretty atypical... free strikes do flat damage in order to speed up off turn actions for example).

It has a defense flavor that is for sure... even without the defense function... remember there is a come and get it element where one is creating a false opening in order to gain and offensive effect rather than create a defensive one.

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Born To Be Kings and Heros -- From the Ashes Phoenix
“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” - Lazarus Long via Robert Heinlein.

One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.


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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Tue May 01, 2018 7:07 pm

Theoretically could be triggered by a successful defense instead of an attack, that might fit even better, but I do think that kind of lacks a measure of volition. Where as it stands they are definitely doing it.

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Born To Be Kings and Heros -- From the Ashes Phoenix
“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” - Lazarus Long via Robert Heinlein.

One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Tue May 01, 2018 9:53 pm

Chris24601 wrote:
For martial control you’re looking at the Acrobat or Sharpshooter... or at least multi-classing with it.

Not sure a William Tell is able to pull of great amounts of control, though maybe pinning enemies en mass... Hiawatha mass barrage of arrows.

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Born To Be Kings and Heros -- From the Ashes Phoenix
“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” - Lazarus Long via Robert Heinlein.

One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Tue May 01, 2018 10:09 pm

Sharpshooters get Certain Aim (autohit for less damage... essentially magic missile using real projectiles), Fistful of Arrows (your ranged attack targets a ranged blast) and Disabling Volley (minor action to subject 1/2 Focus targets with effects like cover fire (can’t take reactions), distracting volley (target is flat-footed), herding volley (slide the targets), or shanking shots (slowed) as just a few examples.

Basically, they’re a rapid-firing trick shooter or knife thrower.
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Wed May 02, 2018 7:55 pm

Ullysses/Odysseus seems to be in a sense the mythic martial controller. Archer-Warlord / Rogue...

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Born To Be Kings and Heros -- From the Ashes Phoenix
“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” - Lazarus Long via Robert Heinlein.

One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Mon May 07, 2018 10:01 am

Time for a fresh update.

Today's update is brought to you by the letter Ø... as in 'empty set.'

Specifically, as I've continued to design monsters, including some more animated traps, it quickly became apparent that just assigning a really low score (or really high score in some cases) to something where the random element is a d20 just won't truly capture certain elements a creature might lack.

As the most prevalent example among the monsters, its not just that an animal is bad at culture/language, engineering and magic lore... its that animals aren't even capable of making those checks and even with a -5 a natural 20 lets them succeed on a TN 15 check. By the same token, some monsters shouldn't have an END score. Non-sapient golems for example don't get tired and don't need to eat or drink or breathe and don't get sick... and they don't repair themselves on their own.

Enter the Ø. If a creature just doesn't have certain capabilities, that ability score gets a Ø instead of a number. This means it does not have that ability score at all. It can't make checks using it and can't be proficient with skills that use that ability score.

Animals don't use intellect, they get by with their wits and presence. Non-sapient golems don't get tired, but they can't push themselves using Fitness either; they have whatever strength they were built with and no more. Spirits don't have a STR score... they can't lift even the lightest of objects unless they have an ability that lets them do so.

This doesn't affect any of the playable species at all; even the golems have arcane batteries that need recharging via "rest" and thus have an END score (allowing them to regain spent Surges); but its going to make designing certain monsters and other threats a LOT easier.
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Tue May 08, 2018 8:26 am

That bit reminds me of old RuneQuest rules.

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Born To Be Kings and Heros -- From the Ashes Phoenix
“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” - Lazarus Long via Robert Heinlein.

One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Tue May 08, 2018 11:16 am

I suspect its a case of there only be so many ways to solve a problem within a given mechanical framework as much as anything. 3e solved the problem by setting animal intelligence at 1-2 (just below the minimum a 3d6 roll could produce... though, in theory, a half-orc could start with a 1 Intelligence in 3e) and then it too had a separate category for "lacks ability score" (ex. undead lacked Constitution and some undead and constructs lacked Intelligence).

I'm not a fan of just setting animal intelligence really low, there are just too many differences between a dog brain and a human brain for that to work in a system where the dice range is bigger than the gap between smart animal and dumb human.

Conversely, I never entirely liked the "unintelligent undead" approach in 3e either. The idea that they were just machines doing exactly what they were programmed to by their creator just doesn't feel right for creatures that prey on the living. Yeah, an animated skeleton may not have anything like a human intellect, but how menacing can they be if the wrong set of orders just makes them stand there and take hits without fighting back or even dodging?

The same goes for long abandoned golems that might have gone "glitchy" after centuries or millennia.

Setting the empty set value for Intelligence at "animal intelligence" solves this, at least in my mind, when coupled with their remaining mental ability scores, specifically Presence. A true automaton would also have an empty set for Presence. They have no sense of self, they can't persuade or deceive, they just follow their instructions as given until complete, then wait for orders.

That doesn't mean all Automatons have to have an empty set Intellect. An automaton that builds things might have Intellect for Engineering, but no Presence so builds exactly what its told to without question.
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Tue May 08, 2018 8:57 pm

Certain spirits didnt have various attributes you could create fetches by granting them some.... it was kind of wierd

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“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” - Lazarus Long via Robert Heinlein.

One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Thu May 10, 2018 11:37 am

Today’s update is two-fold; first, the Fetch mechanics are done, now it’s on to the fluff. Mechanically they’re a Dex/Wit + Int/Pre species with +2 to Culture, Persuade and Stealth, darkvision, resistance to shadow damage and one shadow aspect (shadow-themed utilities) and the option to take additional ones in place of the specialization or utilities or by gaining a vulnerability to star metal (as they of similar kind to elves despite their shadow origin).

The aspects include those I’d put into the half-shade entry (stealth in dim light, teleport through shadows,
Etc.), plus shadow mask (a changeling like ability that aligns with the Fetch mythology of appearing in the form of someone soon to die, with the benefit of changing clothing as well, but the drawback of direct sunlight ending the disguise instantly), lay to rest (super bless weapon vs. undead), shadow tools (draw/create items from shadows) and wings of night (fly via shadowy wings) and shadow-walker (use the plane shift ritual with no check needed, but only to the Shadow World).

I ended up dumping the idea of two types of Fetches based on whether they came for the righteous or the wicked and instead chose to run with the idea of death as the ultimate in egalitarianism and an open question as to whether the Grey Huntress they serve is truly an Astral goddess, a primal spirit or something else entirely (that the Fetches are neither Astral nor Primal in origin makes it an excellent place to muddy those waters).

* * * *

Growing out of this was that as I started working on the Fetch example adventurers I decided to take a close look at what I already had for the other species, since the last time I really did an in depth look at them I still had giants and dragons as separate species from Avatars and Halflings/Shadelinge were still on the playable list.

To say it needed some work was an understatement. Half of the Skilled PCs were swift/daring and only two were Strong (and both of those were tactical) and there wasn’t a wizard left among the examples.

So I spent the better part of a day rebuilding the example PCs to make them a better balance of archetypes, classes and backgrounds. In some cases this involved dropping some examples and moving others. Sister Jadia went from a Half-Shade (human species) to Half-Orc (mutant species) as the nature of Shades without the goblin/orc/ogre aspects made them a poor fit for the Ferrycross massacre (shades are sliding more into the cold sociopath niche since the mutant orcs/ogres still fill the might-makes-right conquering horde niche).

She ended up displacing Dreadmaw (who probably makes a better NPC anyway) because there were already two other Wardens (one of which was also Primal) floating around while a new half-avatar human from a barbarian tribe that had long co-mingled with Avatars let me both get a better background balance and replace one of the over abundant spellcasters (15 of 27) with another skilled PC.

The end result of this tinkering is that of the 30 examples (once Fetches are re-inserted) half will be skilled and half spellcasting.

There will be five strong (two daring, two tactical, one way), five swift (two daring, one tactical, two wary), three Berserkers (one of each) and two sidekicks (a daring and a wary) for the skilled classes. There are seven Arcane (two gadgeteer, two rune, two sorcerer and one wizard), five Astral (two faithful, three militant) and three primal spellcasters.

There are seven controllers, seven enablers, eight guardians and eight slayers for the roles.

There are two arcanists, courtiers, entertainers, monastics, nobles and outlaws. There are three artisans, barbarians, commoners, military, religious and travelers.

I also caught several cases where names or mechanics had been changed, but I’d missed changing it in the examples.

In short, the sample NPCs are now again a balanced array of options for players who just want to grab one and go to choose from. The plan right now is to put filled out character sheet versions of them on the website when it launches (I’ve actually had a conversation with the guy who will be doing it, including the need for a proper forum, game resources, dev blog and storefront).
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PostSubject: Re: STILL Not Dead (Terrors & Tactics Updade)   Fri May 11, 2018 7:13 pm

I very much feel like building that APP with a rpg character creation and reflavoring API. Feature 1 will be reflavoring and sharing of abilities and feature two creating,sharing and loading custom content.

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Born To Be Kings and Heros -- From the Ashes Phoenix
“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” - Lazarus Long via Robert Heinlein.

One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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