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 Post subject: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Sun Jun 19, 2011 7:56 am 
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Far-Sighted Wanderer

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So, as I understand it, if you aren't profiecient with a weapon, you are -4 to hit with hit. 0-level characters are only proficient with their starting wpn. but the -4 is waived for them?

So a 0 level can use any weapon, but as soon as they level up, they can't?


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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Sun Jun 19, 2011 9:09 am 
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ogbendog wrote:
So, as I understand it, if you aren't profiecient with a weapon, you are -4 to hit with hit. 0-level characters are only proficient with their starting wpn. but the -4 is waived for them?

So a 0 level can use any weapon, but as soon as they level up, they can't?
Yes. While it defies logic, it works well as a RPG design tool.

Basically, 0-level characters are primed to die since they have so few hit points, and putting in the additional disadvantage of applying the non-proficiency penalty proved just too deadly. Works better if you simply forgive them the penalty as long as they are still 0-level.

I like to think of the 0-level "funnel adventure" as somewhat different from the campaign itself. They run through the gauntlet just to see who survives, then the real campaign begins. That's when I start to apply the penalty.

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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Sun Jun 19, 2011 12:05 pm 
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finarvyn wrote:
I like to think of the 0-level "funnel adventure" as somewhat different from the campaign itself. They run through the gauntlet just to see who survives, then the real campaign begins. That's when I start to apply the penalty.


I understand the game design logic, but this last statement won't work for every group. My campaign, for example, looks like it will have seven or eight players of whom 3-5 will likely show for any given session. It is also a sandbox where characters can be of different level. Our second adventure had three players with level 1 characters and three players each having a 3 character level 0 group.

I'd really prefer to be able to apply consistent rules to all players. I think something damage related would be appropriate. Either a -2 damage or all non-proficient and improvised weapons do 1d4 damage or something similar.

Actually, I'd rather just have a list of weapons restricted for clerics by god, for thieves to use in a backstab, and possibly by strength for the heavier damage dice, and just do away with other weapon training lists. Instead, give warriors a way to reduce that horrific armor check penalty (cut it in half?) as their training bonus.


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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Sun Jun 19, 2011 1:21 pm 
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but 0 levels are prof with their starting weapons, why would the -4 ever come up? The only time I could see is a guy with a missle wpn picking up a melee, or the other way around

or PCs who "I decided to become an adventureer and bought a longsword" which defies logic to me.


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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Sun Jun 19, 2011 1:41 pm 
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ogbendog wrote:
but 0 levels are prof with their starting weapons, why would the -4 ever come up? The only time I could see is a guy with a missle wpn picking up a melee, or the other way around

or PCs who "I decided to become an adventureer and bought a longsword" which defies logic to me.


Becomes pretty obvious in play. Most common scenarios are:

1 - I started with a sling and have lower agility than strength, I'll swap with you for your melee weapon because you have an agility bonus.
2 - I'll take the spear from the fallen goblin.
3 - Ooh, we found a silver dagger? Sounds important, I think Garth will carry that.
4 - Hakma is going to swing her torch at the beast (like a club).
5 - I'm going to grab [random object lying around] and throw it at the closest cultist. (In my last adventure it was the prize radish a farmer had brought with him).

From what I've seen, easily a third of level 0 characters end up trying to attack with some item/weapon they didn't start with. I like encouraging this improvisation and creativity.


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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Sun Jun 19, 2011 3:23 pm 
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Well, you make a compelling argument. Try using the -4 penalty and see how it goes. You may find that it is more logical and works for your group better! 8)

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"Don't ask me what you need to hit. Just roll the die and I will let you know!"
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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Sun Jun 19, 2011 5:51 pm 
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I think I'd allow some wpns to be used, either at no penalty, or at reuced. things like club, staff, dagger, and sling


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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Mon Jun 20, 2011 11:42 am 
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meinvt wrote:
From what I've seen, easily a third of level 0 characters end up trying to attack with some item/weapon they didn't start with. I like encouraging this improvisation and creativity.

Then eliminate all "starting" weapon proficiency and change the non-weapon proficiency penalty to -2. Then it is consistent throughout all game levels. The game is deadly enough without the -4 penalty. -4 is just punishing.


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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Tue Jun 21, 2011 7:25 am 
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jmucchiello wrote:
meinvt wrote:
From what I've seen, easily a third of level 0 characters end up trying to attack with some item/weapon they didn't start with. I like encouraging this improvisation and creativity.

Then eliminate all "starting" weapon proficiency and change the non-weapon proficiency penalty to -2. Then it is consistent throughout all game levels. The game is deadly enough without the -4 penalty. -4 is just punishing.

Solid advice. Making it a standard -2 for everyone is a pretty good idea!

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DCC Minister of Propaganda; Deputized 6/8/11
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DCC RPG playtester 2011, C&C playtester 2003,T&T since 2003,
ADRP Since 1993, OD&D player since 1975

"The worthy GM never purposely kills players' PCs, He presents opportunities for the rash and unthinking players to do that all on their own."
-- Gary Gygax
"Don't ask me what you need to hit. Just roll the die and I will let you know!"
-- Dave Arneson


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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Tue Jun 21, 2011 8:11 am 
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finarvyn wrote:
jmucchiello wrote:
meinvt wrote:
From what I've seen, easily a third of level 0 characters end up trying to attack with some item/weapon they didn't start with. I like encouraging this improvisation and creativity.

Then eliminate all "starting" weapon proficiency and change the non-weapon proficiency penalty to -2. Then it is consistent throughout all game levels. The game is deadly enough without the -4 penalty. -4 is just punishing.

Solid advice. Making it a standard -2 for everyone is a pretty good idea!


Agreed!

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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Tue Jun 21, 2011 11:15 am 
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In a differnt thread, I suggested that there be no non-prof penalty, but that the class bonus to his only apply to proficnet weapons. So yeat, a 0 level char is +0 with everything.

a higher level char has a bonus to his with class wpns, and is still +0 with others.


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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Tue Jun 21, 2011 11:24 am 
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But that requires rebalancing the attack bonus listed in all the class tables and the warrior class die is thrown out of whack. Not to mention escalation in attack bonuses means ACs need to rise.


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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Tue Jun 21, 2011 12:27 pm 
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why?
the current rule is, you get your attack bonus to hit, or attack bonus -4 with non-prof wpns. Attack bonuses do escale at you get higher in level

my idea is, the current attack bonus is only applied to wpns you are profient with, it's the equivalnet of saying that the non-prof penalty equals your attack bonus. which at least at lower levels, is less than 4.
and it explains why a 0 level character canuse everything equally badly, and doesn't suddenly become worse with some wpns at 1st level

if you use a prof wpn, this rule would be the same as the current official one. the only difference is if you are using a non-prof wpn


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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Tue Jun 21, 2011 12:52 pm 
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How is that simpler than a flat -2 penalty for using a non-proficient weapon regardless of your level or class?


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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Tue Jun 21, 2011 1:45 pm 
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it depends on if -2 at 0 level is to brutal. So far, -4 has been playtested, and rejected. no non-prof penality has been playtested, and accepted, it just has the weirdness of the -4 kicking in at first leve.

if -2 is ok for 0 levels, that's probably fine, it just hasn't (to my knowledge) been playtested yet


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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Tue Jun 21, 2011 1:58 pm 
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jmucchiello wrote:
How is that simpler than a flat -2 penalty for using a non-proficient weapon regardless of your level or class?


I think that could work but I'd like to see the Occupational Proficiency remain but have it fixed. You're a Herbalist, and you've got a Staff? You're proficient with staves. Period.
I think most people would pick up and use other weapons they find in the first dungeon anyway, because you basically exchanging a 10% chance of hitting with a different average damage roll (shortsword, handaxe have 1d6, which means +1 avg dmg; spear +2avg dmg..), or the chance to pick enemies before they get you (Sling). Other weapons may fit your abilities better (maybe you got higher Agility and it cancels out the -2).
And honestly if i were the one walking in the creepy dungeon, and found a bow or a battleaxe, i would take it. And use it.
There's no need for waiving the -2 penalty for 0-level PCs, if it's just a -2.

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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Tue Jun 21, 2011 5:23 pm 
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We have all these fancy dice now, can we just make non-proficient weapon attacks a d16 instead of a d20?


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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Tue Jun 21, 2011 5:42 pm 
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yeah, the "you were prof in the last thing you used" seems goofy. I like the idea that your orig prof carries over


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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2011 8:42 am 
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Halafax wrote:
We have all these fancy dice now, can we just make non-proficient weapon attacks a d16 instead of a d20?

I'm guessing that would shift a critical hit from 1 in 20 to 1 in 16. Giving a non-proficient weapon attack a higher critical percentage seems odd. I guess they could say a non-proficient weapon can't auto-hit or crit ever though I'm a fan of having some chance of auto-hit.

-Dave


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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2011 11:06 am 
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ogbendog wrote:
yeah, the "you were prof in the last thing you used" seems goofy. I like the idea that your orig prof carries over

Yes this does seem goofy. I can see a lot of fights over who gets to use the longsword last just so they can be prof with it at level one.

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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Wed Aug 24, 2011 11:26 am 
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To quote the Beta rules:
"All 0-level characters are trained in the one weapon they possess carried over from their former occupation. If a 0-level character handles multiple weapons over his career, he is considered trained in the last weapon he fought with. At 1st level, a character gains training in additional weapons, based on the class he chooses."

For myself, I think this line implys that a 0 level will pick up a bunch of weapons until he gets a good one that he settles on and then gains first level. The -4 is waived for 0 level play. Adding a line of text to the final draft would help clarify.

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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Wed Aug 24, 2011 11:30 am 
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Forgot to post the rest of the Beta Quote.
"Generally, using a weapon without training imposes a -4 attack penalty. However, this penalty is waived for 0-level characters. It is assumed their naturally poor combat abilities reflect equal incompetence with the martial use of all weapons. (Not to mention that in playtests, applying the -4 penalty increases the 0-level death rate to absurd proportions.)"

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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Thu Aug 25, 2011 7:42 am 
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icetower hit the shark on the nose wrt rules as written, and it worked for my first group fine.
There are a number of viable options to explain it:
Adrenaline and fear are making them better fighters for now.
Suspend the disbelief, or I'll add more notches to my screen for your characters.
Because I'm the DM and I said so.
Because DCC is not real life (my favorite)


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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Thu Aug 25, 2011 10:25 am 
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The last time this was brought up I tendered the simple solution but it hasn't gained a lot of mindshare: Just change the penalty to -2 and apply it to characters of all levels.


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 Post subject: Re: Non-prof penalty
PostPosted: Thu Aug 25, 2011 10:49 am 
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I still think the simplest, most elegant, most logical, and all around best solution is: your attack bonus/attack die only applies on attacks with weapons at you are proficient with, and there is no additional penalty for using a weapon you are not proficient with. Everyone starts out fighting like a mook. The survivors get better at it over time, but only with weapons they are proficient with.


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