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 Post subject: Theoretical Maximums for the Defense Pools?
PostPosted: Sun Jun 15, 2008 3:38 pm 
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Far-Sighted Wanderer

Joined: Sat Feb 16, 2008 9:16 pm
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A question for those with more experience with the system, what are the theoretical "practical" maximums for each of the defense pools; active, and passive?


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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Maximums for the Defense Pools?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 19, 2008 8:20 pm 
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Cold-Blooded Diabolist

Joined: Sat Sep 08, 2007 11:32 pm
Posts: 528
Randy responded to this one, as it's his "department":

"OK, so you have 177 total points to play with through level 15.

So for Johnny one skill
If you dumped 100% into a single thing, say weapons, and you REALLY wanted to maximize your DP's, you would only buy the 1d4 level in anything, so LOTS of specials and masteries. You would only ever get 3d4 to hit (remember we are maximizing DP here), but you would have that with basically all imaginable weapons.

So, with a little math, you'd be left with 88 different specials and masteries, all at the 1d4 level, and have a weapons DP of 352 ... wait, no ... 356 because of the base 1d4 you get for free.

That's the theoretical max for a PC. BUT such a character would have no other skills, a lousy po-harm, and would be vulnerable to attacks that could not be stopped by weapons. There is 1 point left over for an advantage.

By that same token, you could create a character with the 88 different specials and masteries spread among all the DP generating skills.

We can ignore the "free" 1d4 (or 4 DP) for unrestricted skills, since everyone gets those. so we have the same 352 points, but if we spread them around all the dp generating skills, Weaponry, evade, dodge, deflect, toughness and resistance, we can have a fighter (not skilled in arcane defenses) with D Pools of 58 in each. As before, he has only a max of 3d4 in any skill he tries, and there would be one DP with an additional skill point, so one of them would have 62.

The second character would have a better survival rate. While the individual DPs may be lower, he would at least have a chance at whatever attack was thrown his way. He still would not hit very hard. This would be a character with a lot of finesse in combat, but would still be useless outside of the combat role.

Even better, spread the same 352 DP points around to all 6 DP skills PLUS arcanum, and you basically have 48 DP points in each (that's 24 cp per skill with 9 extra CP to dole out as you see fit). The skills with an unrestricted base still get the 1d4 added in, you are STILL limiting your character to 3d4 in max attack power, but you now have added arcanum powers to the mix. This character might make an interesting martial artist indeed! No one hit is very powerful, but there are lots of things in his bag of tricks. Still not a well rounded character, but a fighter for sure."


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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Maximums for the Defense Pools?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 19, 2008 10:09 pm 
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Far-Sighted Wanderer

Joined: Thu Jun 19, 2008 9:44 am
Posts: 11
Really Dan, why should you get extra defense because you have knowledge of weapons that you are not wielding? Personally, it would make more sense if you only got DP for what is in your hand(s). You cannot parry very well with that sword that you left at home, or the pike you sold in the last town.


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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Maximums for the Defense Pools?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 19, 2008 10:29 pm 
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Cold-Blooded Diabolist

Joined: Sat Sep 08, 2007 11:32 pm
Posts: 528
orcface wrote:
Really Dan, why should you get extra defense because you have knowledge of weapons that you are not wielding? Personally, it would make more sense if you only got DP for what is in your hand(s). You cannot parry very well with that sword that you left at home, or the pike you sold in the last town.


Weaponry DP is the abstract score of a character’s overall knowledge of weapon-based defensive maneuvers...that's why I allowed a creature to switch between weapons without affecting the DP points. This is, admittedly, for the sake of simplicity, as I noted in the book.

You could run combat as you said. I didn't play it that way, so I'm not sure how much it would really affect a character's survival rate, at least not without "running the numbers". Don't get me wrong, I see exactly what your saying, and we did rule that way for mastery bonuses (as per the weapons chart), where you can't get that bonus unless the specific weapon is wielded.

Are you running your game as you say (or have you had a chance to play yet)? If so, have you noticed your fighters are at a disadvantage? Of course your rule wouldn't affect a fighter who stuck with one or more similar weapons within the same weapon group specialization... unless you would penalize for not holding specific weapons. It would mostly affect the "weapon master" type, who would otherwise benefit from a higher Weaponry DP from multiple weapon group specializations.


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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Maximums for the Defense Pools?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 19, 2008 10:40 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 30, 2004 3:47 pm
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You could also argue that knowledge of how to use swords is very useful in defending against swords, even if you're currently wielding a mace. Of course, if you and your opponent are both using maces then it's hard to say exactly how skill with a sword would help.

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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Maximums for the Defense Pools?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 19, 2008 11:14 pm 
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Cold-Blooded Diabolist

Joined: Sat Sep 08, 2007 11:32 pm
Posts: 528
mythfish wrote:
You could also argue that knowledge of how to use swords is very useful in defending against swords, even if you're currently wielding a mace. Of course, if you and your opponent are both using maces then it's hard to say exactly how skill with a sword would help.


There's another reason to play it as written...it's easier on the player, less bookkeeping. It can sacrifice realism in some situations, but nobody in playtest seemed to notice. Otherwise, it seems to me, it forces the player to keep track of one "sub-DP" for every weapon group specialization, as well as a a sub-DP for every mastered weapon. I was afraid that would make it something of an accountant's game? :shock:

And yet, if a GM were to ask me to keep track like that, I'd have no problem with it. What I'm saying is I went with the simplified version for the majority, because adding in the extra conditions and complexity is easier than starting with a lot of contingencies in print and scaling it back later. :)

Edit: I took out the words "there only one reason to play it as written", because as Randall has shown, that's not entirely accurate. We can always find ways to justify the rules, although it gets into dangerous territory for debate when we seek to justify them in terms of what's "realistic". Those debates I personally try to avoid, because I suck at them. LOL


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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Maximums for the Defense Pools?
PostPosted: Thu Jun 19, 2008 11:18 pm 
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Cold-Blooded Diabolist

Joined: Sat Sep 08, 2007 11:32 pm
Posts: 528
Randy's reply to this issue backs the "internal consistency" of the rules, as we sought to justify the abstract combination of all Melee ranks into a single Weaponry DP:

Mr. Petras said, "The answer is simple; because knowledge of weapons, even the ones you are not wielding at the time, gives the character greater skill with weapons in general. While you may be wielding a sword, your knowledge of pike combat will offer some knowledge of how to fend off all long handled weapons. As one acquires more skill breadth, the character inherently uses his knowledge of those other weapons to increase his repertoire of moves. Some technique you have learned about pike combat just may save your life even though you are wielding a sword and your opponent has a mace. Perhaps you learned an effective block vs a mace with your pike, and can try a variation on that with your sword.

Similarly, if the character has melee -> Sword -> (variety of sword masteries) and no other specialties, the overwhelming training this character has with swords gives him knowledge of many sword techniques.

This argument applies to any skill with a d-pool, but also to any skill that can be "defended".

The next question will obviously be, "then why not add all the skill trees to the po-harm?" That too is easy.

There are two strong arguments. The main reason is that defense is generally easier than offense. Anyone with weapons training will tell you, the thing you learn first and best is how to defend yourself. Learning attack skills always takes second place, because you can not attack if you are dead. Second, possession of a skill at d12 implies that the character knows the techniques by which to use that weapon to it's fullest in order to cause harm. That is, by definition, what a d12 means! D12 in the general skill implies general knowledge. In this case general knowledge of melee weapons. At d12, you know everything you can possibly know about the general application of damage with hand weapons. If you wanna be better you have to get specific training. Specialties imply specific techniques with that weapon class, and mastery, obviously, with a particular weapon. It shows training in the ways of the rapier as opposed to the broadsword for example. Both swords, but very very different fighting styles.

Indeed, slapping people upside the head with the full brunt of 3d12 should be relatively uncommon! A fighter fighting with his primary weapon of choice may be doing just that, but should he drop his trusty broadsword and have to wield a longsword instead, he's down to 2d12. (unless he happens to have mastery of that as well!!!)"


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 Post subject: Re: Theoretical Maximums for the Defense Pools?
PostPosted: Fri Jun 20, 2008 8:19 am 
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Far-Sighted Wanderer

Joined: Thu Jun 19, 2008 9:44 am
Posts: 11
OK, I see now. I had not reasoned it all out. We have not had a chance to start yet, so I am just looking at starting characters and exploring development in my head.

[This is a great forum as everyone is helpful, amiable and thoughtful. Not like forums for some other games, not to mention names. Thanks everybody!]


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