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 Post subject: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Sat Jul 16, 2011 1:09 pm 
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Far-Sighted Wanderer

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Here's an idea for handling stat increases:

Instead of building the stat increase into the character level itself, why not have levels that are only a stat increase?

Hear me out: So any level after first level, instead of getting the next level's hp and spells and whatnot, the character gets to increase his stats, in a best case scenario, by two. What I mean by best case scenario: A wizard is supposedly more geared toward the intellectual, so if he works on his strength, he gets a single increase in a physical stat. Warrior is the opposite, he gets only a single increase if he opts for a mental stat. to go up. Clerics can increase either without penalty, being somewhat between the physical and the mental.

So here's what I'm thinking if this is even kind of acceptable:

Warriors, Dwarfs: +2 physical, +1 Mental
Clerics, Elves: +2 Either
Halflings, Wizards: +2 Mental, +1 Physical
Thieves: Should be one increase on each side, or be in the same category as the cleric.
Or: None of that and a flat plus one to two stats.

When you skip a level, you don't lose XP or anything. You just hit the next level at the next XP milestone instead. If the wizard hit's level 2 at 1200 XP normally, he'd hit level two instead at whatever the 3rd level was, but be level 2. It's a big tradeoff for the stat bump, but it could be very useful for characters who just want to get rid of a pesky negative 1, and it reflects the hard work it takes to get into metal and physical shape.

What say you?


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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Mon Jul 18, 2011 3:38 pm 
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Mighty-Thewed Reaver

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I have a question...

Why are people into stat increases?

What does it honestly add to the DCC RPG game?

This is not intended to be inflammatory, but an honest question on what it brings to the game.

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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Mon Jul 18, 2011 4:21 pm 
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As written the game routinely applies permanent stat loss. I'm just looking for rules to balance that so that characters over time actually gain a bit of power as they gain levels instead of getting progressively weaker.


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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Mon Jul 18, 2011 6:49 pm 
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Hamakto wrote:
I have a question...

Why are people into stat increases?

What does it honestly add to the DCC RPG game?

This is not intended to be inflammatory, but an honest question on what it brings to the game.


My players don't have a big problem with stats of 9 plus but they get frustrated by the negative modifiers of scores of 8 and below (even if mathematically they make little difference). The biggest issue though is how often a characters stats don't make "sense" to them. Such as when a character with 16 strength and 14 agility has a 6 for stamina. Or a Miner has 7 for strength, or a character can't really fit a role (ie. what appears to be a warrior with 15 strength but 5 stamina to go with it). Some of these you can explain "ie. the character had a horrible disease and his stamina suffered, he never really wanted to be a miner which is why he changed careers etc.) but this gets old. Even after a couple playtests the other DM in the group keeps telling the other players that when he DMs us "he will allow us to assign rolls so it makes sense".

So it's not so much "adding" to the DCC game but removing a source of frustration. In a system like I suggested in another post they players will probably boost their low scores a bit and will likely never boost their high ones. In total they might get 2 or 3 bonus points, nothing that likely even cause a bonus but might get rid of a negative modifier or two. And that's after 10 levels, something they will likely never see.

The point of it though is providing a feeling that they have a way to "fix" their character a bit if needed, and maybe help them embrace a less than ideal PC. The point (for us) is definitely NOT to make super men.


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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Mon Jul 18, 2011 7:11 pm 
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I have mixed feelings about the whole thing. There aren't enough levels in the Beta to really see the long-term effects of Ability Score attrition, also not enough levels to test some sort of stat Increase.

I do want to see the characters get stronger & smarter as they gain levels, and I'm not sure that it's reflected in levels alone, and it's only seemingly natural for the scores to increase as we get "better" so ability score increases do seem pretty logical and reasonable. But how much and how fast?

I'm not sure how I feel about permanent ability loss either, permanent ability loss should be rare, but temporary loss seems totally in the spirit of the game (and the genre.) especially when reflected in Fumbles and Crits.

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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Tue Jul 19, 2011 12:25 pm 
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reverenddak wrote:
I have mixed feelings about the whole thing. There aren't enough levels in the Beta to really see the long-term effects of Ability Score attrition, also not enough levels to test some sort of stat Increase.

I do want to see the characters get stronger & smarter as they gain levels, and I'm not sure that it's reflected in levels alone, and it's only seemingly natural for the scores to increase as we get "better" so ability score increases do seem pretty logical and reasonable. But how much and how fast?

I'm not sure how I feel about permanent ability loss either, permanent ability loss should be rare, but temporary loss seems totally in the spirit of the game (and the genre.) especially when reflected in Fumbles and Crits.


A good question here isn't the whole stronger and smarter get taken care of in the level increases already?

Examples:

Warrior adds class die to damage rolls (partially skill, partially strength).
Wizard gets more spells known and more skill to cast the ones he already does. Does that imply an incremental increase in power?

I do agree with the people who say that you can bench weights to gain Strength and some Stamina (they are closely linked here). I can give you that. But how will you gain AGL, INT, and PER?

No matter how hard I try, my Agility will never be any better. But I might get better balance (skill), etc... but generally I will still trip over the crack in the sidewalk as I walk down the street.

I like the concept that any incremental increase to statistics are already worked into the class level abilities.

AFTER saying that....

I like I.C.E. systems where you roll your starting ability and then your roll on a separate chart for a potential ability score to aspire do as you level up. But that is a completely different game system and I do not see how that would work in DCC RPG w/out cause more imbalance than satisfaction.

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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Tue Jul 19, 2011 1:13 pm 
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Hamakto wrote:
A good question here isn't the whole stronger and smarter get taken care of in the level increases already?


I'm not convinced. Ability loss will likely be greater per level than the increases from class level gains. But I haven't played enough to really see it, so I don't really know.

Hamakto wrote:
I like the concept that any incremental increase to statistics are already worked into the class level abilities.


If that was the case, it would be less of an issue. But it isn't. Level (or even half-level) isn't added to regular ability/skill checks. Only the Attack bonus (or die) for attacks are reflected. Casters get to add their level, and Thief abilities increase, which is fine. But in no way is that +1/level going to reflect all the crits, fumbles, corruption and disapproval effects between levels. Again, how often are the effects permanent? I can't really tell. It may be a non-issue.

If levels 1-10 ( or 1-5 as originally proposed) is supposed to reflect a career in adventuring, there must be some increases in those middle levels to reflect heightened physical training & study. Using real-life examples, Olympic athletes get better with experience and training, and professors don't become professors until some 6+ years of study. Then you have attrition due to age at the ends of their careers. So I imagine at least some ability increases through middle levels or so is pretty reasonable. And yes, athletes do gain more agility with training, students become more intelligent with study and public personalities get better with practice. I'll admit my fat-ass doesn't improve my cycling sitting behind a keyboard on RPG forums. That said, Class level increases alone don't reflect training and study outside of attacks, thief abilities and spell casting.

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"[...] there is no doubt that Dungeons and Dragons and its imitators are right out of the pit of hell." - William Schnoebelen, Straight talk on Dungeons & Dragons


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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Tue Jul 19, 2011 1:33 pm 
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bholmes4 wrote:
So it's not so much "adding" to the DCC game but removing a source of frustration. In a system like I suggested in another post they players will probably boost their low scores a bit and will likely never boost their high ones. In total they might get 2 or 3 bonus points, nothing that likely even cause a bonus but might get rid of a negative modifier or two. And that's after 10 levels, something they will likely never see.

The point of it though is providing a feeling that they have a way to "fix" their character a bit if needed, and maybe help them embrace a less than ideal PC. The point (for us) is definitely NOT to make super men.


After just one session of DCC play, I saw a two permanent stat drops in a party. Extrapolate that over 10 levels of adventure, each constituting multiple sessions per level, and some option to increase stats is imperative, IMO.

Not to "boost" or "max" out a character's stats. Just for them to keep up with their 0-level selves.

I prefer bholmes' system of rolling 3d6 either every level or every other level on a stat that is either chosen by the player or randomly chosen somehow. If the player rolls higher than the ability rating on 3d6, then the character's stat goes up by one point.

I challenge anyone to min-max that system.

It's not about improving a character to demigod status. God no.

It's about giving them enough of a boost to keep them going. In fact, I'd doubt seriously that even doing the 3d6 thing every level would staunch the stat-loss of a spellcaster. Which is kind of the point. After 3 sessions of losing (roughly) 1 ability point every other session, and (maybe) getting back one... well, I think you get the picture. At it's best it's "one step forward, two steps back". Which is why I like it.


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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Wed Jul 20, 2011 2:29 am 
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the best solution i've read so far was:
every other level, the character tries to roll 1d20 over the stat he wants to increase. If he succeeds, he gains +1 on that stat.
If he fails, he does the same with another stat. If he fails again, he can try another stat. Until all stats have been tried. He then starts the order again, from his first choice, until he succeeds.
This system takes into account the player's choices, the fact that higher stats are difficult to increase and gives a steady +1 every other level, but with no real chance of "minMAX-ing"

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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Wed Jul 20, 2011 7:57 am 
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abk108 wrote:
the best solution i've read so far was:
every other level, the character tries to roll 1d20 over the stat he wants to increase...

...was that a d20, or 3d6? Those two options would make for different results, but I'm not going to demo the math (and probably don't need to, anyway) at 5 to 7 in the morning...

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Han Dee, (Weaver) Neutral Thief, Str 10, Agi 13, Stm 11, Per 11, Int 15, Lck 14, AC 13 (Leather), HP 25, Luck Die d6, Backstab 3, Sneak Silently 10, Hide In Shadows 9, Pick Pocket 10, Climb Sheer 10, Pick Lock 9, Find Trap 9, Disable Trap 9, Forge Doc 10, Disguise 3, Read Lang 5, Handle Poison 3, Cast Scroll d14+2, birth augur (Born under the loom) +1 to all skill checks (including thief skills), Banepicks (auto pick lock/disable trap, but lose 1d3 random ability loss, if a 3 then 1 pt is perm)


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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Wed Jul 20, 2011 8:07 am 
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GnomeBoy wrote:
abk108 wrote:
the best solution i've read so far was:
every other level, the character tries to roll 1d20 over the stat he wants to increase...

...was that a d20, or 3d6? Those two options would make for different results, but I'm not going to demo the math (and probably don't need to, anyway) at 5 to 7 in the morning...

I think the 3d6 is more appropriate for unfettered stat gain. The d20 is better for stat recovery (Can't rise above starting value). And I would see no reason to limit these rolls to every other level. Each level, pick a stat to rejuvenate and roll.


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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Wed Jul 20, 2011 9:55 am 
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GnomeBoy wrote:
...was that a d20, or 3d6? Those two options would make for different results, but I'm not going to demo the math (and probably don't need to, anyway) at 5 to 7 in the morning...


That is the first time I have seen that d20 system presented here.

In the system I suggested it was 3d6 and you had one shot to boost a stat of your choice, every 2nd level. If you failed that was it. No chance to raise a stat past 18, and very difficult to raise higher stats at all. Players that are gifted with high stats from the start might never see a boost to a score even after 10 levels. Characters that were unlucky in generation will have a very high chance of improving just a bit.

I am not in favour of using a d20 (changes the math) and don't like the idea that you can keep rolling stats until you get a boost. I want the chance for a Conan to be fighting alongside his fumbling, sickly, loser friend who defied the odds but has somehow made it to 7th level. I want huge variations in what types of characters are rolled up and by not guaranteeing a boost to any of their abilities, and allowing for a "lucky" character to continue his luck streak and boost even higher, you allow for that. The main purpose of this, for my group anyway, is to provide them with a carrot that they will one day be able to "fix" a character they enjoy but whose stats they aren't quite happy with. And for those that enjoy roleplaying their 6 Strength Warrior and the difficulty it imposes on them, they simply try to boost a different stat.

That said, if the d20 system works for your group go for it.


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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Wed Jul 20, 2011 10:41 am 
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I honestly don't remember if it was 3d6 or 1d20. It just moves the odds for increasing high stats, so it depends on how "nice" or "strict" a judge you want to be.

What's important is that the "rotation" of abilities until you get a +1, is something to make sure that everybody gets the same overall increase, +5 in 10 levels. It's nothing unbalanced, if you have such a limited control over it.

For example, you have Konan the warrior:
STR 16
AGI 8
STA 12
PER 11
INT 12
LUCK 6

Assume the player wants to raise in this order: STR, AGI, STA, LUCK, PER, INT
using d20: he has the following chances on the first rotation:
STR 20%
AGI 48%
STA 12,8%
LUK 13,44%
PER 2,6%
INT 1,26%
with the chance of having to keep rolling of 1,9%

If he wanted to adopt a different order, eg: AGI, STA, STR, LUCK, INT, PER
using d20:
AGI 60%
STA 16%
STR 4,8%
LUK 13,44%
INT 2,3 %
PER 1,56 %
with again chance of having to keep rolling of 1,9%

You can see that both the order (choice of player) and the starting value are important to determine the chances for that particular stat to be increased. However, it all comes down to the dice so the player has no real control over it. But this won't create a character who got 5 increases just because of a few lucky rolls, and another who got none.

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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Wed Jul 20, 2011 10:48 am 
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I prefer the 3d6.

It's bell curve would prevent rampant stat increases, would serve better to recover damaged stats and limit stat increases beyond 18.

The proposed d20 system would do poorly in those areas, IMO. And it can be gamed. As written, I would always roll my highest stats (not lowest), knowing that I have a likelihood of increasing my stats with a d20 and also knowing that I could easily address my lower scores if I failed at boosting the highest ones. And the higher the stat increase, the easier it is to acquire the next bonus (e.g. 9-12 = 0, 13-15: +1, 16-17: +2, 18: +3). So I'm rewarded for having that higher stat and rolling on it too.

A character with a 17 in an stat only has a 3% chance of increasing to 18 using the 3d6 system. With the d20, there is a 15% chance of increase. And what happens when a character with an 18 rolls a 19 or 20? There's a 10% chance of that happening. While it's a non-issue with the 3d6 system.

With the 3d6 system, I'd be mentally injured if I neglected to roll on my lowest stats. They have the highest chance of success. And there's no "do-overs" as with the proposed d20 system. No going down the list of abilities until I get a success. So if I get clever and decide I want to try and roll over my INT of 15 and roll a 13, I'm done. There's no safety blanket waiting for me to address my 6 Stamina. By all rights, I should've rolled 3d6 against my Stamina and will be kicking myself throughout the next level or two to do so.

That said, if a group wants to use the d20 stat increases, it's cool by me. I wouldn't use it and I'd use the 3d6 system in its stead if it were core. The rules make no allowances for stats above 18. And it's highly likely that a group would see at least one character with a 19 or 20 in a stat over the course of 10 levels of increases using the proposed d20 stat advancement.

Just my $0.02.


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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Wed Jul 20, 2011 12:35 pm 
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So is it considered off-topic when no one even mentions what the original poster had to say?

I think an alternate level is pretty elegant, can be taken in lieu of a regular level for those who choose to do so, and when they need to do so, and otherwise does little to impede progress.


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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Wed Jul 20, 2011 4:56 pm 
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Quote:
I prefer the 3d6.

It's bell curve would prevent rampant stat increases, would serve better to recover damaged stats and limit stat increases beyond 18.

Oh that's cool for me too :) I just wrote probabilities for 1d20 because they're easier :)

Quote:
The proposed d20 system would do poorly in those areas, IMO. And it can be gamed. As written, I would always roll my highest stats (not lowest), knowing that I have a likelihood of increasing my stats with a d20 and also knowing that I could easily address my lower scores if I failed at boosting the highest ones.
I'm not sure about this. I might really want to get rid of a penalty rather than getting a +2 STR; besides, having to roll your 15 STR and failing the (thin) 25% chance (or less, if you're using 3d6) to improve it, means you'll probably end up gaining a +1 in another STAT, which might as well be your 10 PER.

Quote:
And the higher the stat increase, the easier it is to acquire the next bonus (e.g. 9-12 = 0, 13-15: +1, 16-17: +2, 18: +3). So I'm rewarded for having that higher stat and rolling on it too.

that's a problem with the bell-shaped bonuses :) i agree that with 3d6 it's better, but still you're going to see that, starting at STR 13, the first 2 increase make no difference, the next 2 bring a +1, and the last one another +1... it's still weird, isn't it?

Quote:
A character with a 17 in an stat only has a 3% chance of increasing to 18 using the 3d6 system. With the d20, there is a 15% chance of increase. And what happens when a character with an 18 rolls a 19 or 20? There's a 10% chance of that happening. While it's a non-issue with the 3d6 system.

Well with d20 it was obvious that you'd get to improve a 17 on a 18-19-20. And that you can't improve a stat over 18! :?

Quote:
With the 3d6 system, I'd be mentally injured if I neglected to roll on my lowest stats. They have the highest chance of success. And there's no "do-overs" as with the proposed d20 system. No going down the list of abilities until I get a success. So if I get clever and decide I want to try and roll over my INT of 15 and roll a 13, I'm done. There's no safety blanket waiting for me to address my 6 Stamina. By all rights, I should've rolled 3d6 against my Stamina and will be kicking myself throughout the next level or two to do so.

That's the point: i'd like the warrior to get a nice chance of buffing up STR even if it's 15 already, i don't want him to raise INT that's just 5. Who cares for that anyway!? :roll: By going through the list of skills, he might end up with increasing INT anyway but at least he can juggle the probabilities a bit with the order. And the thing that really boggles me is: think you are the 10 STR Warrior. You got three chances to increase already and always got under your not-so-cool STR. Another player, a wizard, with already 14 INT, rolled 3 times and got +1 two times, so he's at 16 now. Despite the brilliant equity of the 3d6 probabilities, if you're rolling only a few times anything can happen. Since this increase is something that you get only every other level, i'd like that everyone got something at least. Your warrior in the example above might not have increased his STR but maybe got +1 STA +1 AGI and +1 LUCK over the 3 increases. Not too bad, and generates ever growing, unique characters...

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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Wed Jul 20, 2011 5:13 pm 
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jferngler wrote:
So is it considered off-topic when no one even mentions what the original poster had to say?

I think an alternate level is pretty elegant, can be taken in lieu of a regular level for those who choose to do so, and when they need to do so, and otherwise does little to impede progress.


Alternative levels would work if there was standardized XP/levels, there aren't and for the same reasons there isn't any kind of multi-classing.

I like the concept of regaining lost abilities when leveling, but creating a new "class" just seems more complicated than it needs to be.

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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Wed Jul 20, 2011 5:32 pm 
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It's not a "class." It's an attribute bump instead of a level increase. If you imagine that a level is constant training and practice to achieve a new tier of mastery, this would be like lifting weights or reading to do the same to an attribute instead of class powers, personal instead of professional. The XP wouldn't have to change, if you only did the attribute "level" once, you would reach 10th level at whatever 11th level XP might be for a given class.


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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Wed Jul 20, 2011 5:43 pm 
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jferngler wrote:
The XP wouldn't have to change, if you only did the attribute "level" once, you would reach 10th level at whatever 11th level XP might be for a given class.


Nope, it's still a "level" in something that's not your class. It'd just be simpler to wrap ability increases into class levels. That's all I'm saying.

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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Wed Jul 20, 2011 7:33 pm 
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Quote:
If levels 1-10 ( or 1-5 as originally proposed) is supposed to reflect a career in adventuring, there must be some increases in those middle levels to reflect heightened physical training & study. Using real-life examples, Olympic athletes get better with experience and training, and professors don't become professors until some 6+ years of study. Then you have attrition due to age at the ends of their careers. So I imagine at least some ability increases through middle levels or so is pretty reasonable. And yes, athletes do gain more agility with training, students become more intelligent with study and public personalities get better with practice. I'll admit my fat-ass doesn't improve my cycling sitting behind a keyboard on RPG forums. That said, Class level increases alone don't reflect training and study outside of attacks, thief abilities and spell casting.


Ahh... but in 3e they have skills and feats that cover that. Not ability score increases.

Feat: Running

Balance Skills

Reflex Saves

All of those go up as you train higher levels. No ability score is modified to give those bonuses. In 3e and 4e, they just compound the problem with ability score increases and ready access to ability score boosting items.

Now I will give you that there are no equivalents to that in DCC RPG. But the solution is left up to the DM and character RPing.... A character with Sailor background will know swimming skills. But a regular character can learn them as he adventures if the campaign calls for it. This is a strength of DCC RPG is that you get away from a ton of book keeping and skill management. If you have a good reason to know swimming, tell the DM. He may not agree, but you can work on that in the future in your character 'down time'. You will never be as good as someone who has a background in swimming, but you can learn the basics. If you have a good RPG case for becoming an expert in swimming, then make it to the DM (i.e. I almost drowned when I was level 1... I am not going to let that happen again... so when we rest I am going to start to learn how to swim).

But I have not seen anything here that really says 'you need an ability increase to simulate character growth'. So many other things grow with a character that an ability increase does not matter.

Raw strength for opening the door? Yeah that does not increase for gaining a level. Nor should it.

I cannot see a case for gaining intelligence as you grow levels. INT of 7 does not mean that you are book dumb. It equates to a slow learning process. I have friends who are challenged in learning. No matter how far they get in life, they will never get more intelligent. They may be more book smart, but the raw mental agility does not change once they are adults.

They will balance permanent ability drain in the modules. But to be honest, it is DM fiat to determine if the poison attack was permanent or not. If the party is getting hit hard, wing it. DCC RPG is not about being a rule lawyer, but instead going with the flow. If the RAW flow is a little rough for the module, then alter it for your campaign. Some parties like the challenge of overcoming obstacles.

The biggest thing to remember is that a character does not need a ton of positives to survive in DCC RPG. In 3e/4e you need to be a perfect Demi God design character to survive the 'power curve balance' that was written into the game. In DCC RPG you are supposed to be imperfect and have flaws and problems.

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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Wed Jul 20, 2011 8:14 pm 
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The power levels in 3x/4e are ridiculous, and that's something we both agree that DCC is trying to avoid. In no way am I saying the Ability increases should be absolute, or a total reflection of power gained. Just a little bit of both power gained and a bit of power-loss recovery. I'm talking about a small but reasonable increase, not the stupid power-levels of 3x/4e.

I am saying that some sort of ability increase would be reasonable. That's what I'm trying to explain, the reasoning behind it. In your words, "to simulate character growth."

RAW there isn't any, at all. Losing 1 or 2 points of ability score an adventure (as one poster has brought up) is serious attrition compared to the minimal gains of a single level.

I think that's terrible.

The "possibility" of increased ability scores is better than none, and is definitely better than the bump you get every so many levels, and the addition "skills" and "feats", which are, for all practical purposes, just granular ability score increases like 3x/4e-- another thing DCC is trying to avoid.

I know that the power-level to fun ratio is going to be different for everyone. Playing weak characters is not for everyone, but I can guarantee that no one is going to like watching their character wilt into useless characters in the span of a few adventures--that's what I'm currently seeing without some sort of ability score increase.

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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2011 8:25 am 
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abk108 wrote:
That's the point: i'd like the warrior to get a nice chance of buffing up STR even if it's 15 already, i don't want him to raise INT that's just 5. Who cares for that anyway!? By going through the list of skills, he might end up with increasing INT anyway but at least he can juggle the probabilities a bit with the order.


Ah. Then we have different basic reasons here. I don't care about that part I bolded. I'm more concerned about the Warrior who started out at Level 1 with 13 STR and now has a STR of 11 at 4th level. I want some means for that guy to get back up to 13 STR.

abk108 wrote:
And the thing that really boggles me is: think you are the 10 STR Warrior. You got three chances to increase already and always got under your not-so-cool STR. Another player, a wizard, with already 14 INT, rolled 3 times and got +1 two times, so he's at 16 now.


I'd like to point out that this is less probable with 3d6 than it is with 1d20. So the dice systems don't support the example. It's possible sure. But I could also have a Warrior with a +d7 Attack die and a Wizard with a +3 Attack bonus. If the Warrior rolls a 2 on his attack roll and a 5 on his attack die and misses and the Wizard rolls a 19 and hits, is that a problem with combat? Or just a bad roll?

abk108 wrote:
Despite the brilliant equity of the 3d6 probabilities, if you're rolling only a few times anything can happen. Since this increase is something that you get only every other level, i'd like that everyone got something at least. Your warrior in the example above might not have increased his STR but maybe got +1 STA +1 AGI and +1 LUCK over the 3 increases. Not too bad, and generates ever growing, unique characters...


I'm not convinced whether it should be every other level or every level (with the 3d6 thing). So the assumption that driving the cascading of these rolls isn't something I've signed my name to just yet.

The d20 proposal, as written, is gameable -- however. I think the system rewards players who roll against their highest stat first and then cycling through their lowest stats. And, of course, never rolling on Luck. But who would roll on that with the 3d6 system either?

Depending on what the lowest stats were, it may not behoove a class to raise them. Sure, Stamina is a given. Due to its effect on hit points, a potential +1 on STA (either through increasing a bonus or removing a penalty) would have priority over increasing Personality. That's true for the 3d6 thing as well. But there's no "gamble" in the d20 proposal. If I'm going to take a risk to increase my 16 INT, I'm going to have to weigh it against how likely I am to increase my 7 STA. I like that. And it also drifts everyone towards the middle. Such that you'd see more characters in the 10-12 range.

I think with the d20 proposal you'd see a lot of characters with 8s and 16s or higher. It doesn't drift characters towards the middle. It encourages them to boost the highs and lift up the lows, IMO.

I prefer something that isn't geared towards increase so much as stasis. It doesn't bother me that a Warrior can go through 10 levels and not get any stronger. What bothers me is that a Warrior can go through 10 levels and get significantly weaker. We appear to be at cross-purposes.


abk108 wrote:
Well with d20 it was obvious that you'd get to improve a 17 on a 18-19-20. And that you can't improve a stat over 18! :?


Not really. As written, the rule read that if I had an 18 and rolled a 19 or 20, I'd get a +1. Meaning I could get as high as a 20 in an attribute. If the intent was to set a limit at 18, it wasn't obvious.


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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2011 10:30 am 
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Agree with everything Smathis says.

Even if you don't want to simulate the potential for "growth" I still have a problem with the declining stats as you level. If this was 4d6 or other method that generated above-average characters it wouldn't be an issue. Even after a few declines they would still be above average. Instead you have a system (3d6 in order) that creates typically average humans, not heroes but commoners. So now you have Mr. Joe-Average as your PC and due to game mechanics will probably end up with Mr. Joe-Below-Average after a few levels.

I like gritty play but you shouldn't end up the weakest, slowest, most easily-winded man in town after a few adventures.


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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2011 12:30 pm 
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bholmes4 wrote:
Agree with everything Smathis says.

Even if you don't want to simulate the potential for "growth" I still have a problem with the declining stats as you level. If this was 4d6 or other method that generated above-average characters it wouldn't be an issue. Even after a few declines they would still be above average. Instead you have a system (3d6 in order) that creates typically average humans, not heroes but commoners. So now you have Mr. Joe-Average as your PC and due to game mechanics will probably end up with Mr. Joe-Below-Average after a few levels.

I like gritty play but you shouldn't end up the weakest, slowest, most easily-winded man in town after a few adventures.


If you do not want people to lose stats then make all ability damage (outside of corruption) the kind that you can heal one point per day or week. Or make it that permanent damage can only be recovered via magic or quest.

I do agree with other posters that at some point too much grit is rough to keep players enthused with their characters. But I honestly believe that this whole discussion can sum down to the following.

1. Leave the rules as written
2. Side bar on ability damage stating something like this:
Quote:
Not all RP groups enjoy the same style of game. DCC RPG is intended to be gritty and dangerous. If your group is going to have problems with taking permanent ability score loss, then just adjust the ability score loss to be temporary or only semi-permanent. Semi-permanent would be that it would take a week per point to recover and/or require magic spells.


I honestly believe that implementing a system to 'gain' ability scores will have a far more detrimental to the balance of DCC RPG than a side bar telling DM's to cater to their group.

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 Post subject: Re: Alternate physical levels
PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2011 12:58 pm 
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Hamakto wrote:
I honestly believe that implementing a system to 'gain' ability scores will have a far more detrimental to the balance of DCC RPG than a side bar telling DM's to cater to their group.

But most of the comments in here are about a system to "regain" ability scores. Still, I suspect the sidebar is more likely than a system.


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