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Parabellum: Sins of the Children (OD&D-inspired)
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CatharzGodfoot
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 11, 2011 11:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

How's about turning Perception into class features like Base Attack Bonus? There are reasons for turning Athletics, Stealth, Illicit, and Mysticism into class features as well, but I can see why you might not want to.

Spells are said to come as "cantrips", "charms", "spells", but the examples are "charm", "spell", and "weird".
This system is less interesting than putting a mana minimum for free casting on spells. The current system leads to casting weirds/spells until you have one mana left and then casting spells/charms, with the possibility of using one weird/spell as a knock-out before retiring.
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virgil
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 12, 2011 5:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Placing a mana minimum for free castings was part of the original spell system idea, but I dropped it in favor of simplicity. However, the current goal is for there to be a 3 mana cap, which wouldn't be reached until the higher levels anyway. This makes the encouraged behavior of burning spells until you reach one not a hugely encouraged one. This could go even farther depending on how I decide to work the mana recovery rules.

I don't want Perception to be level-based, because that makes it so urchins can't pick PC pockets. Ultimately, I largely want direct combat to be the part that rises with level while noncombat options are an option between characters of virtually any level difference.

I am aware that the ability to become invisible, which I don't intend to be an option until level 6 or so, is the same thing as a +Infinity to Stealth (Hiding). The ability will to do so with Stealth or any other skill will be a notable, character defining trait, and not the situation where any PC could have a pile of skills they auto-win at.

Making it so that the ability to inflict and survive murder is the only thing that truly scales with level creates a setting where even demigods could get tricked by con artists who would have trouble fighting a house cat. It also allows for a setting where powerful villains could plausibly be thwarted by low-level heroes, so long as the PCs never tried to get into a sword-fight.
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CatharzGodfoot
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 12, 2011 5:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Well, either uchins are going to be pick-pocketing at the Master level or PCs (with maxed-out Perception because they are not stupid) will have no problem spotting them.
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virgil
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 12, 2011 12:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

The only characters that even can get Master level Perception are going to be some pair of Martial Artist/Shifter/Beserker who took a Perception-based race (elves?), and the urchin can still have an actual chance of success even if Pick Pocketing is at Expert, especially if there are circumstantial bonuses on his side. Also, what makes Perception the first/only skill players want at Master? Getting flat-footed is essentially giving the enemy a single attack that will likely deal something like 1d6 damage.
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CatharzGodfoot
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 12, 2011 3:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Perception is the skill that lets you
  • Notice hidden creatures, like a gelatinous cube
  • Hear sneaking creatures, like a unit of bugbear ninjas
  • Notice small items or inscriptions
  • See who it is at a distance
  • Hear your friends shouting for help
  • Notice traps before they are sprung
  • Find the dragon's weak point
  • Detect a hidden door
  • Figure out that those damn urchins are picking your pocket before they run off with the Sword of Kas

    I think that qualifies it as the single most important skill for any adventurer. But if you're putting class-based limits on perception, that's effectively the same thing as making it a class feature like BAB: Everyone will max it out, and the high perception classes will have higher scores.
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    virgil
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    PostPosted: Wed Oct 12, 2011 4:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    If you notice, all skill levels are determined by class/race. There currently isn't an option for 'maxing' out a skill. In that way, yes, it's a class feature; but not in the same way as Base Attack Bonus, because that also increases with level.

    I absolutely do not want a high level character to be immune to urchin pick-pockets, nor farmers incapable of hiding from a passing dragon, by virtue of level difference.
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    virgil
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    PostPosted: Fri Oct 14, 2011 9:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    As it's turning out, my first thought on representing races is just giving them specializations rather than full on skills. In fact, I'm going to upgrade the races so they have two specializations.

    In retrospect, this is probably a good thing, as it will make Master level training at 1st level only be in a specialization. At higher levels, the PCs can get another feat to allow for actual skills to reach full mastery in an entire skill.

    Higher level feats will either just be access to another one, or I can create 'prestige feats'; no prerequisites, just feats that have more power than the original feats available.

    I'm really tempted to change Feat into Job, giving it a more obvious reference to Final Fantasy Tactics.
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    PostPosted: Fri Oct 14, 2011 10:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    This looks interesting. I've been trying out various minimalistic fantasy RPGs for a while now, but I haven't found anything really satisfactory yet. I look forward to seeing the playtestable phase.
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    virgil
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    PostPosted: Mon Oct 24, 2011 9:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    This should be complete enough for proper playtesting.
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    PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 3:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    As someone coming in halfway through a conversation: If OD&D doesn't stand for Original D&D, what does it stand for?
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    virgil
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    PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 4:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    It does stand for Original D&D. What I'm making is an extremely heavy revision, the goal being that of a minimalist RPG fitting the D&D aesthetic that cares about rooms without being required to use miniatures.
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    virgil
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    PostPosted: Sat Oct 29, 2011 5:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Now the question here is whether I set the HP/healing system right or not.

    As it stands, a character can have anywhere from 5 to 9 at first level, and 9 to 34 at 5th level. Damage output doesn't really scale except with fireball. So level increases only serves to make attacks/defenses more certain against weaker opponents and to increase lifespan in combat.

    Starting games will likely go with the expectation of 3rd or 4th, when the PC has their second Job, and to give them just a little bit more of survival. Though I do wonder whether the current idea is too soft on players for them to feel like fighting is worth bothering.

    I am tempted to give PCs narrative meta-toughness, and have monsters/henchmen inherently die at 0HP instead of getting a wound unless the attacker goes out of their way to let them live.
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    PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2011 7:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Some notes made while putting together characters for a playtest scenario:


    Hit points per level refers to a "Con score" rather than Strength modifier

    I see references to feats in the skill section. Are those still planned?

    Is Cure intended to heal allies who are damaged, but not yet at 0 HP? How is it intended to balance with Mage Armor?

    PCs clearly start with a specialization in Artisan. Do they start out Untrained barring a race/feat/job that gives a proficiency?

    In the "Magic System" section, the spoiler tags aren't working. I think this is because the forum BBCode in use doesn't allow you to retitle sblocks. Perhaps you should just italicize "Flavour & Background" and put it over the sblock.

    In the chase scene rules, Wide Lead has a reference to stunts based on "Intuition + Primitive" left over from the source material.

    Under "Squaring the Circle", the "Group" bullet should probably end with something like "... will result in Engaging with all creatures in the Group."
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    virgil
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    PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2011 1:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Thanks a bunch for the comments! Jobs were originally titled feats, which is why the text retained language referring to them. I was thinking feats at first, but then I realized what they were doing and they could make a readily recognizable reference to the Final Fantasy games, especially as 'feats' were intended to be this game's form of multiclassing.
    The balance of Cure vs Mage Armor is that of preemptive vs reactive/preventative healing. I'll include the fact it can heal those who aren't at 0HP, but because you can return to full HP in 5 minutes after a fight, it's wasteful to do so. It's primary intent is to bring back KO'd characters in the middle of a fight, and as a Charm it'd be difficult for the wounded condition to see much use.
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    PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2011 3:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    You're welcome. I'm hoping to run a couple of playtest scenarios as a supplement to an existing MTP strategy game, and I'm partway through putting together characters for it. Here's 3 mostly-complete characters that will see use. Not sure whether this is an ideal character sheet format.

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    =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-
    Other notes:

    My current understanding is that races grant both a level of proficiency and a specialization in their skills, but the writing could be clearer.

    "Beserker" may be misspelled
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    Hicks
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    PostPosted: Wed Nov 02, 2011 5:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Why do you have combat broken into phases when just before you explain that action resolution goes from highest to lowest BAB?

    You may also slip the reaction/diplomacy phase in after the surprise check (I.e.. opponents get reaction rolls after they become aware of the player character(s)).


    Never mind, upon rereading your rules I now understand what is going on.
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    Hicks
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    PostPosted: Wed Nov 02, 2011 7:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    What happens when you double a x2 bonus? For instance, an N level Assassin with STR +2 attacks some poor fool with a two handed weapon while having Combat Advantage and the assassin has the Edge and uses the combat maneuver Crush; how much bonus damage does this provide?

    2d6 (7 average) + 4 Two Handed Weapon + 4 Strength Bonus + 8 Crush?
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    virgil
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    PostPosted: Wed Nov 02, 2011 1:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    The skills granted by race are only in the specialization listed, not the base skill itself.

    As for the zweihander assassin, you have it right. I am unsure as to whether the assassin's bonus is too much, though the character IS doing 1d6+8 base damage to begin with.

    Addendum: I still need to decide on the process for gaining levels, as well magic items. The philosophy is going to be one of abilities and traits, not bonuses; a belt of giant strength will make strength equal to that of a giant instead of a fixed increase, or even a specialization in Athletics (lifting), or both. Spellbooks will be magic items, having charms and spells built into them that draw upon the user's numen.

    I am unsure on the beguiler, and think I would do better making it a mystic (enchanter), and letting the concept be Beguiler = Rogue/Enchanter.
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    virgil
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    PostPosted: Thu Nov 03, 2011 1:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Should ranged weapons get a stat bonus to damage, either from Strength (greater force applied, bows assumed built w/sufficient draw) or Dexterity (improved accuracy/called shots)?
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    CatharzGodfoot
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    PostPosted: Thu Nov 03, 2011 5:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    virgil wrote:
    Should ranged weapons get a stat bonus to damage, either from Strength (greater force applied, bows assumed built w/sufficient draw) or Dexterity (improved accuracy/called shots)?


    It's pretty arbitrary, but given that you already apply dexterity to attack rolls, you might as well apply strength to damage. Longbowmen were fucking massive. How is it that you're keeping ranged weapons from totally dominating melee?




    I think I've made this clear in the past, but IMO strength should add to damage with melee an ranged attacks, agility should add to melee attack rolls, and perception should add to ranged attack rolls. I think that represents the archetypes better.
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    virgil
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    PostPosted: Thu Nov 03, 2011 8:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Ranged attacks automatically go last in the round if the attacker is engaged in melee, so archers will get one shot in before Team Monster charges into their personal space, then they'll be immobile for nearly the entire round if they want to fire while in melee (ranged attacks aren't available as a miscellaneous action, you have attempt back in the missile phase and then wait). In addition, ranged attacks are inaccurate when firing into conflicting groups.

    I can see the argument in making Strength (weapon damage), Dexterity (melee attack), and Cunning (ranged attack). However, it does spread out requirements for improving physical offense, while caster offense is largely a single stat.

    I definitely need to write up a comprehensive list of status conditions that special abilities and spells can draw off of.

    Addendum: Played around with the stats such that Strength affects weapon damage, while Dexterity influences weapon attack.
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    CatharzGodfoot
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    PostPosted: Thu Nov 03, 2011 11:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    If you're worried about attribute balance, you could use dexterity & cunning for illusions, presence & strength for evoker magic, dexterity & presence for transmutation, and cunning + presence for conjuration. Or something like that.

    But yeah, the Dex & Str vs Cun & Pre is simple, makes intuitive sense to gamers, and keeps the magickers magicking and the fighters fighting.
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    virgil
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    PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2011 3:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Martial Artist upgraded. Minion rules attached.
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    CatharzGodfoot
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    PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 3:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

  • Skill descriptions still say that races grant a skill level rather than a specialization.
  • Jobs don't seem to indicate what happens when you take on a new job with some skill overlap. Do they stack up to the max?
  • Are the listed 'endeavors' for the skills all possible specializations?
  • Shapeshifters need spells.
  • Minion rules are interesting, but at the moment seem to suggest that everyone should waltz into the dungeon surrounded by a horde, rather than just hiring one or two professionals to fill gaps in the party's knowledge or capabilities.
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    PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2011 7:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    How much does this resemble what you'd imagine an area map looking like in this engine?

    Demon Cave: South Entrance
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