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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 12:27 pm 
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The rules spell out that only the specific demi-human can take their appropriate class, but doesn't specifically say they can't take another class. It's probably logical and easy enough to make a ruling that is the ONLY class they can take, but the rules as written is vague (emphasis is mine), "The demi-human classes of dwarf, elf, and halfling may only be selected by characters whose 0-level occupation was of that race."

It's interesting to see where people are coming from. Some people don't hesitate to change the rules they don't like. Some people will only play a game where the rules are exactly how they want to play. While most are somewhere between the two with tendencies towards one end or another. I'm somewhere towards the latter. When I buy a set of rules, I want to play those rules. But I don't have a problem (but I do hesitate) to change something I don't like. Some munchkins are the type that see rules are things to exploit (I don't want to go there.) When you get into organized or convention play a standard set of rules becomes absolutely necessary. (and probably why power-gamers are so hungry for crunchy rules heavy stuff and love organized/convention play... OT...)

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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 12:49 pm 
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jmucchiello wrote:
rabindranath72 wrote:
jmucchiello wrote:
Choosing a class a 1st level is the FIRST choice you make about your character that is not dictated directly by die rolls. (Occupation is optionally not rolled. But I can imagine folks min/maxing that occupation chart already.)

The point is there is nothing unbalanced about some birth augurs being better than others. Some of the Mercurial Magic effects are better than others too. Is that "unfair"? The concept of balance assumes that the game is supposed to be fair. It isn't. It's a meat grinder. Only the fittest survive, whether by strength of arms, quickness of wits, or plain old dumb luck.

No, the game need not be "fair" for one option to be definitely better than another. "Dumb luck" can get a boost if you get a +1 to ALL saves, vs. a +1 to only 1 save. As a matter of fact, in the same condition, one character is going to be better than another.

Then you also have to throw out the Mercurial Magic table because some 1st level character is going to get d30 on magic missile and be too powerful compared to the guy who rolls d16 on his magic missile.

Then by your reasoning why not rolling the attributes on d20 instead of 3d6? The 3d6 makes sense since you want that lucky (or unlucky!) characters have the same chance to roll extreme values.
I guess we have a different interpretation of what "luck" is. To me, it's about beating the odds. With a uniform roll on an unordered table there are no odds to beat.
Your example is misleading, because to highest rolls correspond highest benefits. Not so with the Luck Score table. It's not ordered and it's unweighted.

As an exercise I am going to re-design the table so that Luck really plays a role: if you ARE lucky, you will get a table entry with a LOW ODD, which gives an higher benefit w.r.t. someone LESS lucky than you which rolled an entry with an HIGH ODD.


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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 12:50 pm 
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reverenddak wrote:
The rules spell out that only the specific demi-human can take their appropriate class, but doesn't specifically say they can't take another class. It's probably logical and easy enough to make a ruling that is the ONLY class they can take, but the rules as written is vague (emphasis is mine), "The demi-human classes of dwarf, elf, and halfling may only be selected by characters whose 0-level occupation was of that race."

It's interesting to see where people are coming from. Some people don't hesitate to change the rules they don't like. Some people will only play a game where the rules are exactly how they want to play. While most are somewhere between the two with tendencies towards one end or another. I'm somewhere towards the latter. When I buy a set of rules, I want to play those rules. But I don't have a problem (but I do hesitate) to change something I don't like. Some munchkins are the type that see rules are things to exploit (I don't want to go there.) When you get into organized or convention play a standard set of rules becomes absolutely necessary. (and probably why power-gamers are so hungry for crunchy rules heavy stuff and love organized/convention play... OT...)

Nope, there are XP tables so the demihumans work actually as classes.


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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 1:14 pm 
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rabindranath72 wrote:
As an exercise I am going to re-design the table so that Luck really plays a role: if you ARE lucky, you will get a table entry with a LOW ODD, which gives an higher benefit w.r.t. someone LESS lucky than you which rolled an entry with an HIGH ODD.

I realize it isn't "right". It doesn't have to be, it's luck. How about the fact that 11 only affects find/remove traps? It that worthless to any non-thief? How can that be balanced correctly?

How are you going to balance attack bonus in melee versus damage bonus in melee? Which one is better? The answer is It Depends. So how are you going to make a static chart that takes that into account. Good luck with your endeavor. But once you try to balance All saving throws versus All Fort Saves you then need to balance Fort Saves versus melee attack bonus versus bonus damage on all melee attacks versus AC bonus versus initiative bonus (which is a group roll at low level and an individual roll at high level) versus number of languages known.

When you are done, there are other windmills to tote at: Tackle the occupation table since I doubt 3% of all the world's 0-level population are apprentice blacksmiths. And the number of apprentice blacksmiths probably doesn't exceed the number of caravan guards by 50%.


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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 1:20 pm 
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rabindranath72 wrote:
As an exercise I am going to re-design the table so that Luck really plays a role: if you ARE lucky, you will get a table entry with a LOW ODD, which gives an higher benefit w.r.t. someone LESS lucky than you which rolled an entry with an HIGH ODD.


In my imaginary and idealized Judges Guide, there are Luck tables based on culture & geography, making the results customized for any given characters background.

I think it's more important that they be INTERESTING than statistically balanced.


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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 1:48 pm 
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rabindranath72 wrote:
Nope, there are XP tables so the demihumans work actually as classes.


I'm not sure what you're referring to.

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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 1:54 pm 
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jmucchiello wrote:
rabindranath72 wrote:
As an exercise I am going to re-design the table so that Luck really plays a role: if you ARE lucky, you will get a table entry with a LOW ODD, which gives an higher benefit w.r.t. someone LESS lucky than you which rolled an entry with an HIGH ODD.

I realize it isn't "right". It doesn't have to be, it's luck. How about the fact that 11 only affects find/remove traps? It that worthless to any non-thief? How can that be balanced correctly?

How are you going to balance attack bonus in melee versus damage bonus in melee? Which one is better? The answer is It Depends. So how are you going to make a static chart that takes that into account. Good luck with your endeavor. But once you try to balance All saving throws versus All Fort Saves you then need to balance Fort Saves versus melee attack bonus versus bonus damage on all melee attacks versus AC bonus versus initiative bonus (which is a group roll at low level and an individual roll at high level) versus number of languages known.

When you are done, there are other windmills to tote at: Tackle the occupation table since I doubt 3% of all the world's 0-level population are apprentice blacksmiths. And the number of apprentice blacksmiths probably doesn't exceed the number of caravan guards by 50%.

Oh, I love sarcasm :roll: :lol:
You don't need that fine level of detail. It's enough to know that having a +1 at all saves is intrinsically BETTER than +1 at only one save. Just weight the items which are clearly better. Since at the moment a +1 to attack is considered equivalent to a +1 to damage, you can leave them as is, and in analogy, if there is an entry which gives +1 to All attacks and +1 to All damages, then you can give both the same weights.


Last edited by rabindranath72 on Wed Jun 08, 2011 1:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 1:56 pm 
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reverenddak wrote:
rabindranath72 wrote:
Nope, there are XP tables so the demihumans work actually as classes.


I'm not sure what you're referring to.

On page 19 there are separate XP tables for demihuman classes. Unless you are suggesting to multiclass, I don't see how you can combine a Dwarf and Thief, for example.


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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 1:58 pm 
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talmor wrote:
rabindranath72 wrote:
As an exercise I am going to re-design the table so that Luck really plays a role: if you ARE lucky, you will get a table entry with a LOW ODD, which gives an higher benefit w.r.t. someone LESS lucky than you which rolled an entry with an HIGH ODD.


In my imaginary and idealized Judges Guide, there are Luck tables based on culture & geography, making the results customized for any given characters background.

I think it's more important that they be INTERESTING than statistically balanced.

I guess INTERESTING varies according to the person. To me, it's interesting that to get a hefty bonus you must be really, really LUCKY.


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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 2:02 pm 
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jmucchiello wrote:
... Tackle the occupation table since I doubt 3% of all the world's 0-level population are apprentice blacksmiths. And the number of apprentice blacksmiths probably doesn't exceed the number of caravan guards by 50%.



It's not a chart of the worlds population, but the % of those that become adventurers.

Here's one way to look at it, 3% of the world's apprentice blacksmiths become adventurers, etc. I can think of several apprentice blacksmiths that did.

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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 2:18 pm 
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rabindranath72 wrote:
On page 19 there are separate XP tables for demihuman classes. Unless you are suggesting to multiclass, I don't see how you can combine a Dwarf and Thief, for example.


I'm still not sure what you're getting at. But I'm guessing you're saying that I'm saying that a player can pick any class, even if their character's occupation is, for example, a dwarven herder--he can choose to be a thief. I'm not saying that, but I am saying is that the rules don't specifically say otherwise. That's all. I think it would be logical (and easy enough for a group to make a ruling) that any character of a dwarven occupation can ONLY pick Dwarf as a class when they make level 1.

The XP tables refer to level progression by class, that's all. They make no indication of class/occupation restrictions.

And, as I was saying, the only restrictions (RAW) are that humans can't pick demi-human classes.

thus, if that is the case (that officially a character of dwarven occupation can be a thief, cleric or wizard) it would be less confusing if the Dwarf class be called Dwarf Fighter, etc.

If it's not the case (which I'm totally cool with) then it's a non-issue.

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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 3:09 pm 
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jmucchiello wrote:
rabindranath72 wrote:
As an exercise I am going to re-design the table so that Luck really plays a role: if you ARE lucky, you will get a table entry with a LOW ODD, which gives an higher benefit w.r.t. someone LESS lucky than you which rolled an entry with an HIGH ODD.

I realize it isn't "right". It doesn't have to be, it's luck. How about the fact that 11 only affects find/remove traps? It that worthless to any non-thief? How can that be balanced correctly?


One thing to remember, the number 11 is not relevant on the luck chart. The only numbers that are specifically relevant on the luck chart are the numbers near one and twenty. Remember the luck chart is a linear chart. So modified 4-17 have exactly the same chance of occurring no matter what they luck score is. The numbers 1-3 and 18-20 have a smaller chance of success because the fall into the realms of being modified enough by the luck bonus to either be below 1 or over 20.

Does that make sense?

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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 3:17 pm 
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No it didn't make sense because we are talking about table 1-2 where you roll an unmodified d30 and a result of 11 gives you a luck modifier to all find/remove trap attempts.


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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 3:32 pm 
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Kruvil wrote:
I think the example of an elf's infravision and iron vulnerability speak to the need for an experienced judge in the game.


Odd. My 0-level elven forester started with iron vulnerability & heightened senses.

Where does the PDF say elves get them at first level?

Likewise, my 0-level halfling vagabond started with infravision, etc.

Maybe I was seeing what I wanted to see, but I interpreted racial abilities as being inherent from birth.


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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 4:02 pm 
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Ogrepuppy wrote:
Maybe I was seeing what I wanted to see, but I interpreted racial abilities as being inherent from birth.


Logically, you're correct, they are/should. But this isn't AD&D. So in the aspect of this game, they don't. Simplicity is key in this game. I see advanced rules being created sooner than later, unofficially and officially.

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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 4:06 pm 
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reverenddak wrote:
Ogrepuppy wrote:
Maybe I was seeing what I wanted to see, but I interpreted racial abilities as being inherent from birth.


Logically, you're correct, they are/should. But this isn't AD&D. So in the aspect of this game, they don't. Simplicity is key in this game. I see advanced rules being created sooner than later, unofficially and officially.

No, the whole point of the game is the experienced DM smooths over the holes in the rules and if the DM says elves are elves from birth (and who wouldn't) then they get their racial abilities at 0-level, too. "Officially" doesn't enter into it.


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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 4:10 pm 
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Ogrepuppy wrote:
Odd. My 0-level elven forester started with iron vulnerability & heightened senses.

Where does the PDF say elves get them at first level?

Likewise, my 0-level halfling vagabond started with infravision, etc.

Maybe I was seeing what I wanted to see, but I interpreted racial abilities as being inherent from birth.

This is true as long as you follow the stereotyped path of the racial class. If you say "well, I'm elven but don't want to be an Elf class" you forfeit the racial abilities and follow the class that you choose instead.

Essentially, you are a fighter (or whatever) with pointy ears who acts just like any human fighter (or whatever).

The game encourages elves to be in the Elf class, but does not demand it.

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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 4:17 pm 
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finarvyn wrote:
This is true as long as you follow the stereotyped path of the racial class. If you say "well, I'm elven but don't want to be an Elf class" you forfeit the racial abilities and follow the class that you choose instead.

Essentially, you are a fighter (or whatever) with pointy ears who acts just like any human fighter (or whatever).

The game encourages elves to be in the Elf class, but does not demand it.


This is how I read it, and will probably Judge it.

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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 4:32 pm 
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Ogrepuppy wrote:
Maybe I was seeing what I wanted to see, but I interpreted racial abilities as being inherent from birth.

As finarvyn is trying to say, Elf class describes a typical Elf born and raised among Elves.

If you play an orphan Elf raised elsewhere, you can choose then one of the four human classes.

Do you have no Infravision? Description doesn't say it's innate, so you can assume an Elf can enhance his sight through decades of night training (something he wouldn't do if raised between humans).

Do you have no Vulnerability to Iron? Raising in a different environment can make your body stronger (if you go to India drinking water could not be so healthy, but a young Indian guy can drink it with no problems being more resilient to specific bacteria).


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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 4:34 pm 
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As I've said before. It's a deal breaker for getting some of my players to read the book. So I'd prefer that it not read that way. That an Elf fighter has racial abilities and is still just a fighter otherwise.


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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 4:37 pm 
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jmucchiello wrote:
No, the whole point of the game is the experienced DM smooths over the holes in the rules and if the DM says elves are elves from birth (and who wouldn't) then they get their racial abilities at 0-level, too. "Officially" doesn't enter into it.


The beta, maybe. I doubt that's the point of the actual game. I think Joe is trying to create pretty complete and comprehensive Fantasy Roleplaying Game in one book. I'm not sure anyone would pay $35 for "rules light." "Official" might not be important some people, but why have any written rules at all? So if a DCC RPG Judge says a 0 level character don't get or need "racial" powers, they don't. Not just because he says so, but because they're the rules.

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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 4:45 pm 
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jmucchiello wrote:
As I've said before. It's a deal breaker for getting some of my players to read the book. So I'd prefer that it not read that way. That an Elf fighter has racial abilities and is still just a fighter otherwise.


I agree, because this not being "official" will be a deal breaker to a lot of my regular players. But what can you do other than house-rule the whole race/class system (which a ton of people will end up doing.) I personally don't want to do it, so I'm not.

I have no problems with the rules as written, a bunch of my players will. I'm used to, and loved BEMCI, it's what a started playing before I got into AD&D. So I don't have a problem with Class as Race. I just have concerns that i know I'm going to have to address in real life with my regular group.

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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 8:14 pm 
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Well, I'm a long time AD&D player that never really liked race as class. But, to be honest I never really _tried_ it. And since I love this game concept I'm keeping an open mind.

To me the race as class concept seems designed to evoke a certain spirit into the game. If you tinker too much you might lose that "essential" quality that the designers were trying to acheive. So I'm trying to embrace the idea, and it's honestly growing on me. For a number of reasons that aren't quite relevant here, but I like it. race as class has some inherent suspension of belief" problems but so does any game system. They are all inherently artificial if you look too close. But for now I'm liking race as class, and I hope it isn't changed too much for the release in November.

The problem of whether 0 lvl pcs should have racial abilities is different. But I don't read this stated one way or the other in the rules, so that gives GMs some wiggle room.

My thought on starting a 0 lvl elf pc that makes it to level 1 and then decides to not be an "elf"; ummm, I have a bit of a suspension of disbelief problem with that one. I would think the occupation limits set on demi-humans is designed to keep the numbers of demi-humans low to reinforce the spirit of the setting. Ending up with an elf (or a dwarf or a halfling) and not wanting to play one is sort of the same as ending up with the pc who has no stat higher than 10. You may have not wanted to play that one, but hopefully the pc funnel has helped you grow attached to him/her. The rules don't specify this, but I'll probably rule that a 0 lvl elf is always an elf ... if he lives that is :twisted:


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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 8:54 pm 
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The odds are there won't be too many people with more than one level 0 non-human. If they don't want to be an elf they have their level 0 who goes first and opens all doors for the group! Shouldn't be a problem.

I have been looking at the Free RPG module for a while and thought the funnel might not be 'tight' enough to weed the group down. Then I looked at some of the characters people posted on the forums here today. Someone had 4 Hit points between all 3 of their level 0 characters. I immediately re-evaluated things!


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 Post subject: Re: Demi-human classes...
PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 9:10 pm 
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Just as a reminder, these rules are a BETA. I've been playing this game regularly with a wide variety of people across the country for around 18 months...and all the rules are very clear in my head. Why can't you read my mind?? :)

Thanks for pointing out a couple things that need to be clarified in the final rules:

* 0-level demi-humans really should get their basic racial powers (infravision, etc.) at 0-level. That really doesn't come up much (they die off fast) but it's a good observation regarding a hole in the rules as written.

* My intent with demi-human characters is they have to take their associated class; e.g., a level 0 dwarf has to level up as a dwarf, and can't choose "thief" as a class. That said (and this is becoming a speech I've made so many times I really need to prep an FAQ), I acknowledge that most of the people playing this game are experienced gamers and I'm sure one or more of them will come up with some cool alternate demi-human classes (e.g., elven sage, halfling acrobat, dwarven runelord, etc.). At some point in the future, I suspect there will be more options for demi-human characters. BUT that's outside the scope of what I'm intending to do. I'm shooting for a simple, fast game where a character can be created in the first 10 minutes, killed in the next 30 minutes, then replaced 5 minutes later. Us old guys with families and jobs and commitments need fast, fun games, not something to agonize over for 3 hours as we build the ultimate optimization! Sorry for the rant there but I think you get the idea!

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