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Feats that scale with level
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Absentminded_Wizard
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 05, 2004 9:34 am    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

RC wrote:
And this is what I object to. If you think a feat should be worth +5 AC then give that +5 upfront at first level or whenever you take the feat. A 25% swing is a 25% swing, at any level. If it's ok to hand that out at level 20 then it's also ok to hand that out at level 1.


confused

Then why do spells like GMW and Divine Favor scale with level? If scaling is okay for spells, then why not feats?
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FrankTrollman
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 05, 2004 4:42 pm    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Quote:
There will always be creatures, NPCs and PCs who rely strongly on normal attack rolls. It is not always a simple matter to convert these to touch attacks. If you're a fighter for instance, you're exclusively making normal attacks. You can't switch to save or dies like a mage can. You're basically hosed.

It's the paradigm that "attacks don't matter at high levels, so it's ok to make them worth jack shit" that makes fighters suck in the first place. Maybe part of the problem is that we are undervaluing normal attacks here?


There's a fallacy in your argument, and it's based on the fact that player characters and NPCs are different things and made with different rules. When we introduce the ability for player characters to get very high ACs, or even complete immunity to one or more kinds of physical attacks (such as granting incorporeality), we are in no way making Fighters hosed - we aren't even making them weaker. We are hosing Giant Scorpions, and Giant Scorpions alone.

See, when we create a feat which provides a +5 Dodge Bonus to AC, we aren't changing the AC of monsters at all. A monster simply has whatever AC the DM assigns it, and always has. A Giant Scorpion's AC is primarily based on its Natural Armor, which in turn is simply an arbitrary (and very high) number which is in no way based on stacking various bonuses together or limited by anything except the DM's appraisal of the skills of the PCs.

So the things which the "Fighters" of the world are attacking are not actually in any way affected by the introduction of a worthwhile version of Dodge.

So what's the problem?

-Frank
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RandomCasualty
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 06, 2004 2:51 am    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Absentminded_Wizard wrote:

Then why do spells like GMW and Divine Favor scale with level? If scaling is okay for spells, then why not feats?


GMW, shield of faith and barkskin scale because they're granting bonuses you're getting normally from more valuable magical items. So the spell basicalyl replaces a magic item. this doesn't really cause any balance problems, aside from giving spellcasters cheap gear. But you aren't giving them a bonus they couldn't normally have because they don't stack.

Divine favor is an anomaly. It scales too much IMO for a 1st level spell, and should probably be cut to a +3/+3 flat bonus because right now it's useless at low levels and broken at high levels. But lemme instead use divine power, which is actually a good example of a balanced scaling buff. DP takes an action to cast (or uses the quickened action), which the feat doesn't. As written in the core this isn't a broken spell. However, it does become broken if you make it persistent. Though I have always said that persistent spell is broken, and I always will.

And as a whole spells tend to scale because you can only cast 1 spell per round. Having cone of cold memorized doesn't make your fireball any better for instance. Where as with feats, you can have multiple feats and magic items working at once. When you use dodge, you can also use weapon spec, weapon focus, spring attack, elusive target, cleave and power attack in the same round. Spells aren't like that. That's why they scale.

Quote:

There's a fallacy in your argument, and it's based on the fact that player characters and NPCs are different things and made with different rules. When we introduce the ability for player characters to get very high ACs, or even complete immunity to one or more kinds of physical attacks (such as granting incorporeality), we are in no way making Fighters hosed - we aren't even making them weaker. We are hosing Giant Scorpions, and Giant Scorpions alone.

You're really not hosing giant scorpions though, because they'll still probably be able to hit, you're hosing balors, nightcrawlers and all the other monsters that aren't ridiculous like giant scorpions. Now those monsters in turn have to use magical attacks, because they can't count on physical attacks much at all.

And once you start accepting that all non-Tarrasque style monsters use magic attacks exclusively then you've hosed fighters. Because half of what fighters do is get great ACs and good hp, so they can win at normal physical combat. Once you accept as a design goal that physical combat becomes obsolete, well that means everything shifts to magical combat, that means everything the fighter has focused on for the past 20 levels is now obsolete.

Oddly enough you've made the feat worse by improving it, because when you improved it you accepted the design paradigm that the feat doesn't matter because only a select few monsters use physical combat and you geared the feat to combat the giant scorpion while totally making the balor and pit fiend unable to hit the character, therefore completely forcing them to resort to magical combat exclusively.

For the fighter's hit points to mean something, creatures of all kinds have to keep using physical combat. I'm not just talking about Tarrasque style creatures, I'm talking about balors, undead, golems, dragons, NPC fighters, NPC rogues, etc. etc. and it has to work reasonably well, otherwise they'll all use magic or they'll simply be chumps.

I don't have any problem with having Tarrasque style creatures require magic to deal with, because those creatures are a distinct minority. If you feel there's a problem with them, then I would redesign those creatures, as opposed to trying to redesign a general feat which ends up making them the only creatures capable of landing a hit.

If the goal is to level the playing field agaisnt huge monstrosities, then you simply create a feat that does something like doubles the size penalty to attack, or gives a +4 bonus against gargantuan or bigger creatures. If you think characters need help against big stuff, then target the fix exclusively there, instead of making NPC rogue and fighter opponents as well as any number of other powerful creatures totally obsolete.

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Absentminded_Wizard
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 06, 2004 8:07 am    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I think part of the problem here is that everyone's debating how this feat would work if it was incorporated into a game that otherwise used the core RAW. Ideally, you wouldn't just rewrite Dodge to scale and introduce it into the game; you'd rewrite other feats to scale as well.

RC, how would you feel if, hypothetically, someone wrote a series of replacement feats that all scaled with level--including some version of this Dodge feat and scaling Weapon Focus and Weapon Specialization? In other words, is your problem with the concept of scaling feats in general, or with this proposed scaling feat in isolation?
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FrankTrollman
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 06, 2004 3:05 pm    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Quote:
You're really not hosing giant scorpions though, because they'll still probably be able to hit, you're hosing balors, nightcrawlers and all the other monsters that aren't ridiculous like giant scorpions.


...and Balors can simply switch to Blasphemy or Firestorm, or Implosion if for some reason they aren't connecting much with their vorpal sword. So again, what's the problem?

A high level monster that can't do anything but attempt to stab you in the face is kind of a joke anyway, so why are you so very concerned about making it slightly less effective by dint of allowing people to get a meaningful bonus out of Dodge? Do you roll around on the ground because ghost form exists? What about the fact that shapechange can reproduce incorporeal, flying, and naturally invisible forms?

-Frank
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RandomCasualty
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 07, 2004 7:48 pm    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Absentminded_Wizard wrote:

RC, how would you feel if, hypothetically, someone wrote a series of replacement feats that all scaled with level--including some version of this Dodge feat and scaling Weapon Focus and Weapon Specialization? In other words, is your problem with the concept of scaling feats in general, or with this proposed scaling feat in isolation?


Well, you could do that, but I think that would generally just create more "must take" feats. For instance, now all your monsters are going to have weapon focus in the weapon they use so they can hit. And I'm not sure why you'd want to do that. Yeah, you're making certain feats more special, but that just ensures everyone takes it.

Weapon spec I suppose could possibly scale to some limited degree, because a +1 to damage isn't a 5% swing, it's going to be something much smaller than that.

Quote:

...and Balors can simply switch to Blasphemy or Firestorm, or Implosion if for some reason they aren't connecting much with their vorpal sword. So again, what's the problem?

A high level monster that can't do anything but attempt to stab you in the face is kind of a joke anyway, so why are you so very concerned about making it slightly less effective by dint of allowing people to get a meaningful bonus out of Dodge? Do you roll around on the ground because ghost form exists? What about the fact that shapechange can reproduce incorporeal, flying, and naturally invisible forms?

The moment the balor stops using his sword is the moment your fighter starts to suck really hard. As a fighter you want him to use his sword against you. You've got tons of hp, heavy armor and crappy saves. The more he uses physical attacks, the more you gain. The very existance of a low tier feat that everyone is going to have which makes you unhittable to balors is actually hurting the fighter, a lot.

Unless you have a feat on the other side of the spectrum that does the same to protection from magical attacks, then you're now encouraging everyone to be a spellcaster. Exactly what the fighter doesn't want, because he sucks against spellcasters. If I can't take a feat to become virtually immune to blasphemy, implosion and firestorm except 5% most of the time, then you are greatly hosing physical combat.

You can't just walk in and say "AC isn't important because physical combat is a waste of your time. All my balors are pure spellcasters." because you're designing something so that monsters will always target a fighter's weak spot. AC and hit points are the fighter's main thing. You cannot ever make those a nonfactor in standard combat. Ever. You should routinely be meeting stuff that just does a straight out attack in addition to its other stuff. Because if everything is a spellcaster that can just outright ignore the fighter's two advantages, well then he really is hosed.

If your paradigm is: magical combat > physical combat, then you simply can't expect the fighter to ever be good or useful.

The answer is not to write off AC and just say "well every creature at high level that isn't the Tarrasque can cast spells, so it doesn't matter if the fighter can't be hit by them."

Remember the fighter doesn't want them casting spells, because spells hose him. He'd prefer to eat the damage from a full attack, because that's what he's good at.
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FrankTrollman
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 08, 2004 5:40 pm    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Bored

So making it so that you can protect yourself from certain types of monster attacks makes player characters who use similar attacks useless? How does that make any sense?

Does the player getting Mindblank make PC access to Charm Monster useless? Does PC access to Shapechange make Power Word: Stun a useless spell? Why?

If player characters are immune to an attack form with the proper form of investment, how does that render their use of that attack form better or worse in any way? Unless the monsters are immune to it, there's no difference at all in the effectiveness of the attack form in the hands of the players.

And we aren't even talking about making characters immune to physical attacks, just give them ability to invest in having a higher AC - which isn't the same thing at all.

So on what planet does any portion of your argument hold up? You are doom saying that player characters having the ability to be more resistant to a certain kind of monster attack form is going to make player characters who use a similar kind of attack form against monsters useless. That's insane.

Me having a flak jacket does not invalidate me having a gun. Actually it makes me having a gun better. A lot better. If melee combat is more survivable for player characters, hitting people with a sword is a more viable strategy, your argument is completely backwards and meaningless.

-Frank
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RandomCasualty
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 09, 2004 10:40 pm    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Frank, it's like this. You have a bullet proof vest which grants you good protection against bullets. You've spent lots of money on it. Now, you want your opponents to be shooting at you. In fact if they don't end up shooting at you, then your vest doesn't do you much good at all. The vest doesn't have to be perfect in terms of defense either. So long as it reduces the damage you're taking by a worthwhile amount, that's good.

However, if these vests are cheap (and your opponents know it) then they'll stop using guns and use something else. This in turn really screws you over because you wasted your money buying your vest. Now everyone is using spells and swords against you because your defenses are so good against guns. In turn because bullet proof vests are so cheap and effective you don't meet hardly any encounters where people use guns.

Trying to invalidate AC is pretty much the same thing. It just means your opponents stop using melee attacks, and having immunity to an attack form nobody uses is indeed useless. Your immunity is only meaningful if people actually use the attack type agaisnt you. And if your game world becomes structured in a way that melee attacks are pointless, then people stop using them, so your immunity to them in effect becomes useless.

For resistance to melee attacks to mean something, then someone has to come in there thinking that melee is going to work and you surprise them by being resistant. If they expect to fail, then they won't bother using it.

You simply cannot have a paradigm that deliberately invalidates physical combat... because the only one that helps are the spellcasters and the paladins because they have magic immunity and awesome saves. The moment you say "I don't care if your AC is astronomically good, because all high levle monsters use magic", you get your wizards and paladins drooling at the mouth and your fighters throwing up their hands.

Basically by offering a +5 dodge feat you're offering PCs a highly situational bonus that applies only when you're fighting a collossal scorpion or the Tarrasque, other than that it's good only against ray spells, because monsters don't bother using physical combat anyway in your games.

Is it just me, or wouldn't you rather just have the standard dodge feat and know that things are actually going to be attacking you, so your AC will mean something. I'd rather have a tree of 5 feats that each give a +1 AC, because then when you've got that AC specialization you can count on things actually being surprised by it.

This really seems to me to be a case where you let your PCs sell their dicks for condom money, and claiming the deal is somehow helping them.
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FrankTrollman
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 09, 2004 11:03 pm    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

RC, that is one of the most pathetic slippery slope arguments I've ever seen.

1. Dodge Being comparable in size to a Ring of Protection makes ACs that are unhittable.

This assertion is just sort of perplexing, as it does nothing of the kind. Even your boogeyman of the super AC character as posted by you didn't have an unhittable AC, even with Dodge being five times its present size.

2. If ACs can be made which are unhittable, ACs in general will be unhittable.

This next part of the chain of assumptions is laughable - a specific case does not prove a general state, and a min/maxxed AC is the biggest AC, not "all ACs".

3. If ACs are in general unhittable, the NPCs will automatically know this and use other weapons immediately.

Again a strange claim to make, why exactly do the monsters know what directions the PCs have min/maxxed themselves?

4. Non-AC dependent attack forms screw non-spellcaster characters.

Ahem. What?! Warriors have more hit points, and a higher incentive to multiclass than spellcasters, giving them better saves. I am truly not following you on the claim that they are somehow more vulnerable to save-dependent attack forms. On account of warriors have better saves.

So your slippery slope is wrong at every level. You keep hand waving these assumptions as if they were obvious, but they are stupid. If you make player character hit points last longer in a fight, each hit point is worth more, so having more of them is a bigger advantage.

I am honestly curious as to how much liquor was required to make your slippery slope argument which concluded in total that making Player Characters who invest in armor class get more for their money made Player Characters who fight with swords die more often.

That's just crazy talk.

-Frank
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RandomCasualty
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 09, 2004 11:52 pm    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

FrankTrollman wrote:
On account of warriors have better saves.


Um... right...

If you don't have divine grace you're screwed as a warrior. Just blast the guy with a will save and he's dead. Sure your fort save is crazy high if you're a multiclass whore, but your will save looks like total garbage and leaves a gaping hole in your defenses.

Changing the game around so that it's easy to max out your AC is a bad idea. Especially with an introductory feat that many monsters already have, or could have.

You aren't restricting this stuff to fighters, so it's not powering them up any. The party cleric is going to have this crap too, because it's a 1st tier feat. So I don't see what you're doing besides screwing up the game.
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fbmf
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2004 4:05 am    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Tension scale is at about a 9. Let's bring it down to a 2 or so.
[/The Great Fence Builder Speaks]

Game On,
fbmf
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Absentminded_Wizard
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2004 10:22 am    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

RC wrote:
Absentminded_Wizard at 3:07:13am 7/6/04 wrote:

RC, how would you feel if, hypothetically, someone wrote a series of replacement feats that all scaled with level--including some version of this Dodge feat and scaling Weapon Focus and Weapon Specialization? In other words, is your problem with the concept of scaling feats in general, or with this proposed scaling feat in isolation?




Well, you could do that, but I think that would generally just create more "must take" feats. For instance, now all your monsters are going to have weapon focus in the weapon they use so they can hit. And I'm not sure why you'd want to do that. Yeah, you're making certain feats more special, but that just ensures everyone takes it.

Weapon spec I suppose could possibly scale to some limited degree, because a +1 to damage isn't a 5% swing, it's going to be something much smaller than that.


But if you rewrote all (or almost all) feats to scale with level, then they would all be "must haves." Or, to put it another way, they would all be good enough that people would actually want to take them.

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RandomCasualty
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2004 10:16 pm    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Absentminded_Wizard wrote:

But if you rewrote all (or almost all) feats to scale with level, then they would all be "must haves." Or, to put it another way, they would all be good enough that people would actually want to take them.


People already do take weapon focus and weapon spec. That +1 to hit and +2 to damage are helpful, just because they stack with everything. They aren't amazingly awesome, but hey, ever little bit helps, they're still worth it. Weapon spec could probably afford to be a +3 or +4 though, because it is a 4th level feat. Weapon focus is fine at a +1. People would take dodge more often if it were just a straight +1 bonus to AC.

Making introductory feats give +5 bonuses is bad, because you're just inflating the game. By 20th level, lots of people are going to have these feats, so you arent' helping the fighter any by having weapon focus give a +5 to hit, because the cleric with war domain has it too.

If you intend to help feat based characters, you dont' make introductory feats super powerful, you make powerful feats with lots of prereqs.

If you had a +5 AC feat with requirements of : dodge, mobility, elusive target, combat expertise, and a few other feats, then you'd be helping the fighter.

But to hand out +5s like nothing to all the classes is just blatant power inflation, and beyond just trying to make PCs harder to hit against monsters, what purpose are you really serving here?

D&D is really all about adding up the little +1s from different sources and coming up with a big bonus in the end. If a +1 ceases to be significant then you have a problem, because that means all your sitautional modifiers, like flanking and attacking from higher ground, etc. become devalued, and that shouldn't happen.
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FrankTrollman
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 10, 2004 11:12 pm    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Random wrote:
People already do take weapon focus and weapon spec.


And their characters suck. Maybe the fact that the feats are ass is the reason that the Fighters are ass. Considering that their only class feature is their stupid feats I think that hypothethis is looking pretty good.

The fact that people spend a feat for +2 Damage, because they don't have anything better to spend it on does not militate against making feats, in general, better. If the best feat in the whole game gave you +1 to Gather Information only on Tuesdays people would still take it, and that wouldn't mean that it was balanced for the feats to be that shitty.

I mean honestly, what are Fighters supposed to do to prove that their feats aren't good enough? Boycott their feats and fight with their BAB only? They wouldn't be that much worse off if they did that.

How would Clerics fare if they decided to not prepare any spells?

---

At high levels, Fighters suck ass. At low levels, the only reason they can compete is because the world is so nuclear that anyone with basic equipment can be a meaningful adjunct to combat regardless of attack bonus or class features. At 2nd level, having four or five extra Experts with crossbows would be totally awesome - and so the fact that a Fighter doesn't have much of a bulge on NPC classes armed with simple weapons isn't that ig of a deal.

As soon as having some extra warriors at your back stops being a big deal, so does the Fighter. And this happens because feats are stupid. Not for any other reason really. Combat classes get insufficient class features which are too small.

Feats are the basic building block of warrior class features, so they need to be better. They need to scale, they need to make a noticable difference at high level.

-Frank
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RandomCasualty
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 11, 2004 4:23 am    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

FrankTrollman wrote:

And their characters suck. Maybe the fact that the feats are ass is the reason that the Fighters are ass.


Suck compared to what? They'll beat creatures of their CR if they're well equipped and have a few decent PrCs.

I mean seriously what are you weighing them against? The uber persistent spell abusing cleric, the munchkin druid, the frenzied berserker?

Yeah I mean when you're playing with stupid broken spells like spikes and other stupid broken crap, then yeah you do need to blatantly inflate fighters to compete, buit that shit shouldn't be in the game to start with.

And inflating feats won't even do what you want it to do. It just means the cleric archer and the druid just pick those up too, and now they're even more uber. It doesn't close the power gap at all. It just means PCs rape monsters even easier and throws the CR system out of whack. It's Magic the gathering all over again. You counter the latest wave of faster, bigger, badder with something even more powerful and sooner or later your game sucks ass, because it's so power creeped that you really don't have many options anymore.

The answer is not powering up feats... the answer is a relentless flurry of blows with the nerf stick on those uber classes. They're the real problem.

Take away persistent spell, take away the non-core buffs like spikes, and the cleric isn't all that powerful unless you use cheese like teleport ambush after buffing. If you have to use rounds to cast your buffs and all youv'e got are divine favor, divine power, and righteous might, you're really not going to dominate. You can only cast 2 of those a turn assuming you've got quicken, and that's going to take your entire turn. This means you're taking a minimum of 1 buff round to get to full power.

We all know that the druid and cleric are crazy powerful... the answer is to use that conclusion and nerf nerf nerf. There's nothing wrong with breaking out the nerf stick and whacking away. And you'll get a lot farther than trying to buff up everyone else to compete, because after you finish making the fighter super uber, then the rogue is going to be complaining, and the bard and the barbarian and the ranger... and god knows who else.

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Lago_AM3P
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 11, 2004 3:18 pm    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Quote:
Suck compared to what? They'll beat creatures of their CR if they're well equipped and have a few decent PrCs.


Are you fucking kidding me?

Crack open a Monster Manual II. Hell, just crack open a regular Monster Manual. Fighters suck ass against almost every single monster past CR 10, and a large portion of these monsters do nothing but run up and attack.

Fighters get their asses reamed by simple things like CR 9 monstrous centipedes pumped up by an invisible cleric's fly spell, an extremely unexciting monster in almost every respect.

Someone tell me how fighters are supposed to stand up against ghosts.

A fire giant will completely rip a damn fighter's face off.

Hell, even a roc will give a fighter a run for his money, and all they can do is fly and full attack! This is completely unacceptable.

Fighters totally and utterly suck at any encounter past CR 10, especially if you use books geared towards a harder difficulty set of monsters (Monster Manual II, Fiend Folio). If you'll pick up little boxed adventures, they pretty much tell you that you have to have a spellcaster carrying the fight or you're done.


Someone fucking tell me why we should hold fighters as the fucking paradigm of balance right now when even the goddamn game designers admit that they don't do their job properly, or I'm completely through arguing this.
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Absentminded_Wizard
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 12, 2004 10:03 am    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

RC wrote:
Suck compared to what? They'll beat creatures of their CR if they're well equipped and have a few decent PrCs.


This isn't a good counterpoint to Frank's argument that fighters suck. Any core class that absolutely requires you to PrC out of it to be effective is by definition too weak.

Your most effective argument is the possibility of buffing clerics and druids picking up these feats. Rewriting feats to scale with level would leave fewer feats if you simply rewrote the core rules feats, since the "Greater X"-type feats would be absorbed into the new scaling feats. For the project to work, new feats would have to be added, from either non-core sources or the designer's own ingenuity, in order to make getting more feat slots mean something.


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RandomCasualty
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 13, 2004 5:47 am    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

OK, let me clarify. When I say "fighters" I mean fighter type characters. People who take normal stuff and pick up a fighter PrC. A relatively normal one, like weapon master. Not the broken stuff like frenzied berserker. I could come up with some examples of one fighting various monsters, but I don't really think I have to. I could do this but seeing that most people interpreted my statement to mean the core fighter class, I won't bother because I agree that the core fighter is underpowered at higher levels.

If you want to talk core fighter only, then if anything should scale, it should only be his fighter only feats, like weapon spec, and improved weapon focus, etc. and they should scale based on his fighter class level, not his overall hit dice. Thast might be balanced, because the fighter class needs help anyway.

If you want it to scale based on fighter level only, then that'd probably be fine, because you can consider them class abilities of the fighter class. Don't give the cleric and druid even more cheap bonuses to cash out on by making introductory feats uber.

If you want to make fighters better make their feats actually better not feats anyone can take. Or at the very least feats high on the feat chains.
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 13, 2004 1:28 pm    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

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If you want to make fighters better make their feats actually better not feats anyone can take. Or at the very least feats high on the feat chains.


Then if we're making character options exclusively for a select few, why don't we just make them CLASS FEATURES, like the 4 special abilities a rogue gets?

Seriously, if you're restricting abilities to the point where you can only get them if you have a certain title on your sheet, then they're selectable class features.

Which is actually a fine way of doing things, just don't say this and then say that the fighter class as-written is fine, because you just admitted that it is not.
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FrankTrollman
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 13, 2004 3:40 pm    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

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OK, let me clarify. When I say "fighters" I mean fighter type characters. People who take normal stuff and pick up a fighter PrC. A relatively normal one, like weapon master.


OK. At 7th level you're supposed to be able to melee a Hill Giant to a standstill. Good fvcking luck with that. Even broadening the defintion of "fighters" to "people who don't have more than 2 levels of fighter", a rather peculiar claim to be sure, you've still got the problem that people who take crap like weapon master blow.

So we have this Weapon Master character, and he's 10th level. How is he going to deal with a Roper? How is he going to deal with a Fire Giant? How is he going to deal with a Devil? Or an 8th level Cleric Vampire? Or a Giant Scorpion?

What is the CR 10 monster that a Fighter 2/ Barbarian 2/ Ranger 2/ Templar 1/ Exotic Weapon Master 3 can take even half the time? I can't actually find any. I think the fact that you so blandly deny your need to go through the numbers hides the fact that you know that the numbers simply aren't going to back you up on this.

And the numbers aren't going to back you up on this. Unless you go into stuff like Frenzied Berserker (something you claim is broken, apparently because it is better than a fighter of all things), you just can't beat CR 10 monsters as a 10th level Warrior character. This has been well established after years of playtesting and debate. This issue is dead.

-Frank
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Oberoni
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 13, 2004 4:06 pm    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I don't get this. RC wants to somehow stop some feats from scaling unless the fighter, and only the fighter, can get his hands on them.

Why?

The whole point of the fighter isn't that you get feats, it's that you get more feats. Who cares if other classes pick up 2 scaling feats? You're a fighter, you've got 6.

I would hate making sucky feats non-sucky, but only if the freakin' fighter gets them. It would be like baking a delicious pie that only albinos are allowed to eat.
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RandomCasualty
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 13, 2004 8:55 pm    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Oberoni wrote:

The whole point of the fighter isn't that you get feats, it's that you get more feats. Who cares if other classes pick up 2 scaling feats? You're a fighter, you've got 6.

Because you can't take stuff twice. You can't as a fighter take the upgraded dodge feat twice or three times, so the cleirc has as good AC as you do. Having more feats doesn't help if you can't double up on benefits. The point is that you're getting a +5 AC, and the cleric is too... you can't spend 2 more feats to make that a +10 or a +15, you have it and he has it.

Quote:

I would hate making sucky feats non-sucky, but only if the freakin' fighter gets them. It would be like baking a delicious pie that only albinos are allowed to eat.


The point is that you're actually giving the fighter a new class feature, scaling feats, which are tied to his main class ability right now: feats. Since feats are his thing anyway, that kind of makes sense. We have always said the fighter needs more class abilities, and this is a perfect way to allow it. It also improves the core fighter, which is a good thing.

Quote:

Which is actually a fine way of doing things, just don't say this and then say that the fighter class as-written is fine, because you just admitted that it is not.


Yeah, I do admit the core fighter is not. It's so ingrained in my mind that fighters need PrCs that I just say fighter when I mean any combat type from fighter/weapon master to fighter/dervish or whatever. The single class figther does indeed suck bad. So badly in fact that I don't even regard a single class fighter as a reasonable choice. Fighter is basically a 4 level class at most.

Quote:

What is the CR 10 monster that a Fighter 2/ Barbarian 2/ Ranger 2/ Templar 1/ Exotic Weapon Master 3 can take even half the time? I can't actually find any. I think the fact that you so blandly deny your need to go through the numbers hides the fact that you know that the numbers simply aren't going to back you up on this.


If you want to start up a new debate about this stuff, I'd be game, but I really don't want to get too much into this for fear of totally derailing this topic.
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FrankTrollman
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 13, 2004 9:44 pm    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Quote:
The point is that you're actually giving the fighter a new class feature, scaling feats, which are tied to his main class ability right now: feats. Since feats are his thing anyway, that kind of makes sense. We have always said the fighter needs more class abilities, and this is a perfect way to allow it. It also improves the core fighter, which is a good thing.


If only the Fighter can take scaling feats, and only the scaling feats are allowed to be good, you haven't actually solved anything. You've given the Fighter some static class features, and then given them the entirely illusory ability of "choice" where they can "choose" to get abilities which are by design total crap instead of good abilities.

This is like the "choice" to multiclass into "warrior". Sure it's a "choice", but it's sucktastic by design. And unsurprisingly, it sucks. The whole point of bonus feats instead of, say, a rigid set of class features, is that you get to choose. If only a small set of available choices are any good by design, then you don't really have a choice that means anything.

Death or Cake is not an acceptable option. Everyone takes cake and it's just like there wasn't a choice for death. Or maybe someone takes death anyway because their character conception is cakeless and game balance gets screwed.

Either way, that's crap. If you are going to have feats that are sucky by design in the option pool, you might as well get rid of the entire concept of bonus feats entirely and then limit all feats to sucky ones. As long as noone is supposed to be glad when they get a feat, feats don't have to be any good.

If anyone is supposed to be happy when they get a feat (as is necesitated by the concept of bonus feats as class features), then you're just going to have to accept that feats have to be good enough in general to make people happy when they get them.

As long as all feats are good, then the fact that a Fighter gets 2 more of them by 2nd level is good. As long as any of the feats are supposed to be suck-ass, the Fighter will run out of the good ones eventually, and eventually he'll take the sucky ones and his class feature won't mean shit any more.

A hierarchy of good and shitty feats is not sustainable. It has to be all good or all shit. And if people are being served it for dinner it can't be shit.

-Frank
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Oberoni
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 14, 2004 1:54 am    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

RandomCasualty wrote:

Because you can't take stuff twice. You can't as a fighter take the upgraded dodge feat twice or three times, so the cleirc has as good AC as you do. Having more feats doesn't help if you can't double up on benefits. The point is that you're getting a +5 AC, and the cleric is too... you can't spend 2 more feats to make that a +10 or a +15, you have it and he has it.


What the fruit is this?

Seriously, even by your own logic on this, getting pimped out in 8 areas is still cooler than getting pimped out in 3 areas, right?

I don't freaking care if a Cleric takes a good feat. I really don't. The point is that if way more feats are good, he has to seriously pick and choose among the good feats, and the fighter can pick up a ton of the good feats.

Maybe both the Cleric and the Fighter have Cool Dodge and Cool Weapon Focus. However, the Fighter has Cool Whirlwind Attack, Cool Save Bonus Increase, Cool Charge, and Cool Weapon Specialization.

I hope that it's manifestly obvious why that fighter gets hooked up here, even though his Cleric buddy still has the same AC.

---------------

RC, you really, really have to get past your "Caster types cannot see a drop of benefit from improved feats" block you have.

If you want to maintain the status quo, you will of course let divine casters et al be better by default.

If you instead want good feats to be fighter-only, the divine casters et al will just keep taking the same feats they always did, the Fighter will be pimped out, and the other melee classes and PrCed characters will be left in the dust.

No, feats should rule, simple as that. All of them. Make them scale by level.

It's a paradigm that is so simple, I can't for the life of me see why anyone would want anything different.
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Absentminded_Wizard
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 14, 2004 3:11 am    Post subject: Re: Feats that scale with level Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Yeah. Now that I think about it, I'm not even sure that rewriting all the feats to scale would really eliminate enough to make the fighter nonvialble vs. clerics. I can only think of about 3 feat chains, involving about 4 "excess" feats total, that would be compressed by scaling all the fighter's bonus feats.

If you scale spellcasting-specific feats, the number increases to 5 by adding the Spell Focus and Spell Penetration mini-chains. I'm sure RC will have a heart attack at the idea of scaling spellcaster-specific feats, but does it really hurt for wizards to have Scaling Spell Focus if all the save-boosting feats scale too?
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