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 Post subject: A thought or two on Race & Class
PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2012 9:31 am 
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I understand folks wanting to separate Race from Class and be able to play Elven Clerics and Dwarven Thieves and such...

At one point in the game's development, the concept was you might have a zero-level elf survive the funnel and decide to level them up as a Warrior, instead of using the Elf class. Your elf would be less 'Elfy' than some other Elves, but hey, you'd be playing what you wanted to play!

But people (generally) didn't like that. They wanted to be ALL Elfy, and ALL Warriory, too. "Why should my Elf be less of an Elf than other Elves???"

But my question is: Why should they be exactly as Elfy as all the other Elves?

Human Traits:

Humans see a broad range of the color spectrum -- except those that can't.

Humans can run a mile in 5 minutes or less -- except those that can't.

Humans are good with numbers and calculations -- except those that aren't.

Humans are good at reading body language and recognizing emotions in others -- except those that aren't.

etc.


Why do all the Dwarves have to be like all the rest of the Dwarves? All Halfling like the rest of the Halflings? All Elves identical?

Why not embrace (or at least try/experiment with) trading off some Dwarvish traits that may or may not come up, in order to play that Dwarven Cleric?

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Gnome Boy (a.k.a. "Jon") • DCC play-tester @ DDC 35, Feb 2011. • Beta DL 2111, 7:00 AM PT, 8 June 11.
Playing RPGs since 1977 • Quasi-occasional member of the Legion of 8th-Level Fighters - Holds the power to play gnomes at will!

Here Be DCC Monsters...

General Yoros, Warrior, Str 13, Agl 8 (10), Stm 17, Per 13, Int 11, Lck 8; Law, HP 39, AC 17, R+2, F+4, W+2, band/shld, warhammer, longsword, longbow, pitchfork

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: A thought or two on Race & Class
PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2012 8:28 pm 
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Other people have written volumes about this very issue and it'll never be settled. I think the most simple answer to the question "Why is my elf just an elf?" is that it is an attempt to accentuate the alien-ness of non-human characters.

Do what's fun and satisfying for you. I'll keep my elves as elves. :D


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 Post subject: Re: A thought or two on Race & Class
PostPosted: Fri Aug 03, 2012 11:38 pm 
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Indeed, this was essentially my line of thinking with the "Race and Class" post elsewhere... essentially, many of the "typical" demihuman traits are particular and common to most of the members of those races because they follow the same traditional training regimen... not necessarily because they possess the abilities innately due to their genes. They are acquired and earned through environment, not nature...

The primary argument against all the abilities being innate to the racial makeup is that the characters will not have them at 0-level… regardless of how old the character might be or how related his profession might be to the “racial” ability, only a few abilities are possessed and not earned until 1st level… abilities officially possessed at 0-level are noted with an asterisk.


Dwarf Class

Attack Modifier, Mighty Deeds, and sword and Board: All due to standard dwarven military training;

Infravision*: Innate to dwarves, and seems natural for a race that truly lives underground all the time (unlike elves and the smial-dwelling halflings);

Slow [Short]*: Innate;

Underground Skills: States explicitly that these skills are due to "long life living underground," not innate;

Luck: "applies to attack rolls... just as a warrior's does." Trained, not innate;


Elf Class

Magic, Caster Level, Supernatural Patrons: "Elves practice arcane magic sustained by traffic with otherworldly creatures.” Trained, not innate;

Infravision: Could be innate, but just as likely, due to the class description and lack of possessing it at 0-level, as being gained through their traffic with otherworldly types; (though the lack of possessing it at 0-level might be an oversight, as with the halfling’s “Small Size,” below);

Immunities: Same as Infravision;

Vulnerabilities*: Could be understood as due to the traffic with otherworldly beings, I went with it as being innate, to give the elf race a counterbalance like the slow speed of the dwarves and halflings;

Heightened Senses*: Again, could be due to traffic, but I went with this as being innate;

Luck: Long lifespan + practice with magic, not innate;


Halfling Class

Two-Weapon Fighting: Training

Infravision*: Innate, and officially, the only racial ability a 0-level halfling has (IMC they don’t have infravision at all).

Small Size: This should be innate and possessed at 0-level; halflings don’t just shrink when going from 0 to 1st level, after all!

Stealth: Could be training, could be innate; in my version of the 0-level demihuman abilities, it is innate and related to their size, rather than Infravision.

Double Luck: This could, I suppose, be considered innate, in the stead of the Stealth or Infravision;

Luck Recovery: As the Thief gains essentially the same ability, this seems more a training than innate ability;

Good Luck Charm: This is the ability that every player who wants to play a “halfling thief” or other class would insist that, of course, it must be innate! However, if it were truly “innate,” the “one lucky charm halfling per party” rule could not stand. It is, as mentioned a “fickle thing governed by gods,” and thus not truly innate. The gods, it seems, smiles on halflings who follow their traditional cultural paths, not those who eschew these ways and follow other paths…


That’s why I go with the following innate abilities for 0-level demihumans:

Dwarf: Infravision and Short (base speed 20')

Elf: Heightened Senses and Iron Sensitivity

Halfling: Stealthy (+2 Sneak Silently and Hide in Shadows) and Short (base speed 20'), though officially it should be Infravision and Short, and the argument could readily go for Double Luck and Short… maybe Stouts have Infravision and Short, Tallfellows Stealthy and Short, and Hairfeet have Double Luck and Short…

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 Post subject: Re: A thought or two on Race & Class
PostPosted: Mon Nov 19, 2012 4:01 am 
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There's the argument that we're projecting too much of our humanity onto elves, dwarves and such.

The argument I think sums it up is that humans are humans, we can act within broad ranges of capacity and skill. And in a fantasy setting our strengths are our tenacity to do so much in our short lives thanks to our inborn ambition. We are so short lived, we are hard wired to specialize. Where dwarves only expand what's already in their caves, we build castles from the ground up that protect ourselves and have mastered the art of engineering. Where orcs can run for days and days, we broke horses to our will and became equestrians. Demi-humans do not have the range or nearly the capacity to act as we do. Basically what I'm getting at is we are more free-willed and ambitious than other races and our culture accepts thinking outside the box because we have to make accommodations for a 40-70 year lifespan where other races, even halflings live to at least a hundred.

I'm not entirely sold on this idea as well, except for retro style games because that's how basic D&D did it. DCC is sort of my "hey, let's take a quick break from pathfinder" system, not my go-to system. If it were to replace Pathfinder as my main system, first thing DCC would need is an "Advanced Dungeon Crawl Classic" supplement that gives players the option to have demi-humans take character classes instead as. I love random characters, i love the funnel. But not enough to completely do away with having choices.


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 Post subject: Re: A thought or two on Race & Class
PostPosted: Mon Nov 19, 2012 9:52 am 
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Demihumans are not as diverse genetically as humans, thus they are more similar to their kin than humans. This is why they are going to fall over time and be replaced by humanity. :)

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 Post subject: Re: A thought or two on Race & Class
PostPosted: Mon Nov 19, 2012 10:46 am 
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LondonDry wrote:
...gives players the option to have demi-humans take character classes instead...

Well, this was the point of my post -- but in the pre-Beta version of things from the playtest days...

If your character is an Elf at Level Zero, you could level him up from there as a Cleric if you wanted. You'd not get all the Elfy-ness of the Elf class, but you'd have that Cleric you wanted to play. In this case, an Elven Cleric. As a thought experiment, I don't see a problem with that. But (at the time of the original post) folks were talking about layering demi-human class elements with the other classes. My question was why? Why can't you say your character is an Elf, his DCC occupation is Elf, he could be treated like an Elf in RP, but the character is using the Cleric class...?

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Gnome Boy (a.k.a. "Jon") • DCC play-tester @ DDC 35, Feb 2011. • Beta DL 2111, 7:00 AM PT, 8 June 11.
Playing RPGs since 1977 • Quasi-occasional member of the Legion of 8th-Level Fighters - Holds the power to play gnomes at will!

Here Be DCC Monsters...

General Yoros, Warrior, Str 13, Agl 8 (10), Stm 17, Per 13, Int 11, Lck 8; Law, HP 39, AC 17, R+2, F+4, W+2, band/shld, warhammer, longsword, longbow, pitchfork

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: A thought or two on Race & Class
PostPosted: Mon Nov 19, 2012 1:32 pm 
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I've been toying with providing _all_ of the classes the opportunity to train in another class at a certain point. I'm eying 5th level (or actually 6th level) for this change to be available.

Thus an Elf is an "elfy elf" for 5 levels, and then can decide to become a Cleric. I hadn't thought too much about the Elf being able to use all his elfy elf powers AND clerical powers, but I'm not sure that it matters much. If your Elf makes it to 5th level and then wants to take on the powers of a 1st level cleric, I don't see that much as a game breaker. Especially since I wanted to build in a bunch of roleplaying "requirements" for the Elf to even be considered for the cloth by the god of his or her choice. For instance, the Elf just can't make the choice -- he or she would have to have spent time, money, service and possibly a quest or two in the god's service before he or she could become a full-fledged priest/cleric. And this could start when the 0-level elf is rolled up. That character starts as a worshipper of the god and has aspirations for spending his or her life serving that god -- and thus roleplays that desire throughout the character's life...etc.

I don't see that race and class is much of a problem. I did at one time, but there are many many opportunities in game (both within the rules and with the individual Judge's campaign) for characters to become more than the standard class description. A cleric can become a druid simply by worshiping a nature god that only provides "nature-oriented" spells to its adherents. A fighter could become an assassin by joining a secret cult of assassins and passing all the various tests and training -- thereby either being granted some special assassin power or not. The fighter could just use a certain style of fighting -- or have a special set of Mighty Deed of Arms maneuvers.

I think I'm approaching this question the way that DCC seems to approach a lot of things -- there is no _one_ way to skin this cat. So, why codify a set of "player options" when the Judge can handle it just as easily in game and personalized.

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 Post subject: Re: A thought or two on Race & Class
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 1:08 am 
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I think all the different ways we do it, is the right way. It all makes sense to me, and doesn't bother me that others do it their way. The Wizard in my campaign started out during Beta, it's the same character but was a Dwarf Blacksmith when 0-level. The player is OK with that, losing (or never had) the racial abilities, like seeing in the dark or smelling gold, but became a stocky bearded spell caster instead. I think it's fine, and makes for interesting conversation.

I like the idea of Advanced DCC, but because of the modular nature of DCC, it makes more sense that it be presented more like Unearthed Arcana, in that it's all optional. I think that's why the next official rules book for DCC RPG will be an Annual instead of an Advanced version/addition. Not sure if that makes sense.

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 Post subject: Re: A thought or two on Race & Class
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 7:38 am 
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I'm hoping to hear something... anything about this Annual being in the works.


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 Post subject: Re: A thought or two on Race & Class
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 8:43 am 
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cthulhudarren wrote:
I'm hoping to hear something... anything about this Annual being in the works.

There was definitely a post by Harley, spilling the beans that one was in the works, but no word on when it would hit the streets.

My purely speculative guess: the anniversary of the game's release.

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Gnome Boy (a.k.a. "Jon") • DCC play-tester @ DDC 35, Feb 2011. • Beta DL 2111, 7:00 AM PT, 8 June 11.
Playing RPGs since 1977 • Quasi-occasional member of the Legion of 8th-Level Fighters - Holds the power to play gnomes at will!

Here Be DCC Monsters...

General Yoros, Warrior, Str 13, Agl 8 (10), Stm 17, Per 13, Int 11, Lck 8; Law, HP 39, AC 17, R+2, F+4, W+2, band/shld, warhammer, longsword, longbow, pitchfork

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: A thought or two on Race & Class
PostPosted: Wed Dec 19, 2012 12:53 pm 
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Personally, I bought the book because it reminded me of the old way of playing D&D. I have a good chunk of the books released in the early 80s and that is what I cut my teeth on for rpgs. So, all dwarves were warrior-like and elves were wizard-like and archer-like. I will admit that I am not a fan of the plethora of books that get published by WotC and Pathfinder. I am all about less is more. :)

Wild Bill 8)

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 Post subject: Re: A thought or two on Race & Class
PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2012 6:55 am 
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wildbill wrote:
Personally, I bought the book because it reminded me of the old way of playing D&D. I have a good chunk of the books released in the early 80s and that is what I cut my teeth on for rpgs. So, all dwarves were warrior-like and elves were wizard-like and archer-like. I will admit that I am not a fan of the plethora of books that get published by WotC and Pathfinder. I am all about less is more. :)


I got on Pathfinder early on, but quickly got off as multiple books came out every month.


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 Post subject: Re: A thought or two on Race & Class
PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2012 8:08 am 
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One thing I've thought about trying is getting rid of racial bonuses for everyone. This would force players to pick race based on character concept instead of getting an extra advantage somewhere. (I do this with weapon damage in some of my OD&D games, where all weapons do d6 so that players pick what fits their concept instead of looking for a plus somewhere.)

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