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 Post subject: Re: Updated Cleric Class
PostPosted: Wed Aug 24, 2011 12:48 pm 
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Chaos-Summoning Sorcerer

Joined: Mon Mar 14, 2011 5:28 am
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Of course, the other solution is to have unique deities and make the rules for "getting spanked" (or not) dependent on the deity in question. Aloof deities might have a "don't bug me unless the world is exploding" attitude and spank often. While a nurturing deity might not mind throwing magic around as long as it for ultimately used for "good", whatever good means to it.


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 Post subject: Re: Updated Cleric Class
PostPosted: Wed Aug 24, 2011 3:52 pm 
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Far-Sighted Wanderer

Joined: Tue Jun 21, 2011 2:54 pm
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That works, of you roll them randomly. Or make the cool gods brutal, like of you use Bahamut, and piss him off, you might eventually get blasted by him. Maybe Cthulu sends along a mind flayer and you suffer permanent Int loss if you piss him off.

I'm thinking along the lines of my fav roguelike Nethack, prayer too often angers the gods, stripping you of divine protection, levels, and other forms of punishment, including summoned demons bent on ripping your head off


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 Post subject: Re: Updated Cleric Class
PostPosted: Fri Aug 26, 2011 11:00 am 
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Mighty-Thewed Reaver

Joined: Tue Aug 28, 2007 10:50 am
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Location: West Suburbs of Chicago
Tortog wrote:
Ducaster wrote:
...
2) They all say:- "Why on Aerith" does a Failure cause a an add to dissaproval! Surely it should be the other way around. If your spell fails at a critical moment that's penalty enough but if it succeeds then that is reason for the Deity to be relectant to help you twice (or more) in a given day. IE the more you bother them/it the more reluctant the Deity is to help again, as evidenced by growing penalties on the dissaproval roll.
...


I've been wondering about the logic of this one ever since I read through the 1st version of cleric. If a cleric character is the living embodiment of their deity on Aereth, then they (IMO) have obligations to the deities faithful worshipers. As such they should be able to call upon the clerics of their faith for aide and it just doesn't make sense that the cleric would be penalized for using the power of their deity in such a fashion.

I've been tempted to house rule in that if the Cleric is actually using the magic to directly further the agenda of their God(dess) then no penalty should be incurred at all. I'm calling it the Instant Deity Approval System, otherwise the only time a cleric ever hears from their boss is when they are getting spanked. Yes, I realize that this radically increases the power of a cleric: and that is as it should be, they are the embodiment of a deity after all. Otherwise a deity ends up with its best "sales-reps" being penalized for doing their jobs well... the revision just makes the process a little faster.


To provide a little insight into the design of this...

When designing the power use mechanic for a cleric, we had to design something that would put a limit on what a cleric could do. In the early versions of the cleric, you would accumulate a -1 on failure and/or success (depending on the version you were playing). This created a progressions where a cleric would effectively run out of spells.

The problem with that method (as brought up in countless discussions), is that after a few -1's a cleric can no longer successfully cast a higher level power or even achieve a high spell result. So by noon, he is weak... by 3 in the afternoon his holy symbol is more effective than his spells.

The new design keeps the cleric bonus consistent throughout the day. They still have the same chance to pull off a 3rd level spell in the morning or evening.

Since a cleric does not lose a spell on failure like a Wizard, there has to be another limit imposed.

The limit that seemed to work best for spells, healing and turning seemed to be to incur disapproval of your god for additional actions. There were a ton of ideas that were thrown out there and discarded. Some very cool ones, but they necessitated a ton of bookkeeping and/or promotion of fight/rest/fight/rest/fight/rest style of play.

The one that rose to the top during the discussion was to tie it to spell failure. Lower level clerics will accumulate failures far quicker than higher level clerics. Remember a cleric does not lose a spell like a Wizard on failure.

This creates a progression for both low and high level clerics to limit the number of powers you can invoke during a given day. A low level cleric will accumulate spell failures far quicker than a higher level cleric. Eventually, the automatic failure number grows large enough that even if you have a high spell craft check, you will most likely fail a spell check. That is a sign that your deity is NOT very happy with how many requests you made.

Mathematically it seems to do well to limit spell casting.

Design-wise is seems to do well in its simplicity. All three areas of the cleric (spells, lay-on-hands, and turning) can use the same success/failure mechanic.

RP wise... you never really understand why your god does something... :)

Does that help a bit?

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 Post subject: Re: Updated Cleric Class
PostPosted: Fri Aug 26, 2011 3:38 pm 
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Hard-Bitten Adventurer
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Hamakto wrote:
..... That is a sign that your deity is NOT very happy with how many requests you made.

Mathematically it seems to do well to limit spell casting.

Design-wise is seems to do well in its simplicity. All three areas of the cleric (spells, lay-on-hands, and turning) can use the same success/failure mechanic.

RP wise... you never really understand why your god does something... :)

Does that help a bit?


Yes it does. The mechanic works for me. It was just a logic problem that stymied me. I had no answer to give my genuinely puzzled players. Now I can say that each spell attempt is noted by their god but no approved (for whatever reason) and the Deity is getting annoyed with your continuous appeals for help.

Nice one, much appreciated. +d16

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 Post subject: Re: Updated Cleric Class
PostPosted: Sun Aug 28, 2011 1:58 pm 
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Mighty-Thewed Reaver

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Thanks for the explanation!!!


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 Post subject: Re: Updated Cleric Class
PostPosted: Sun Aug 28, 2011 11:25 pm 
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meh... It's a game mechanic... I'll use it; but I'll be quite liberal with knocking down the accumulating modifier. Anytime the cleric is using their powers to further their Gods ethos: no penalty applied. To me it makes no sense to do otherwise.


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 Post subject: Re: Updated Cleric Class
PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 8:28 am 
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Mighty-Thewed Reaver

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Location: West Suburbs of Chicago
Tortog wrote:
meh... It's a game mechanic... I'll use it; but I'll be quite liberal with knocking down the accumulating modifier. Anytime the cleric is using their powers to further their Gods ethos: no penalty applied. To me it makes no sense to do otherwise.


Tortog,

You can house rule anything you want. But if you do not put a limiting mechanic in play, you are going to have the clerics run hog wild over your campaign. If they are doing a quest for the ethos, then they will have unlimited casting potential?

Sounds like it could open a can of worms. :)

Plus, if my DMing history is any indication.... What is part of the ethos can be subjective and can create some hard feelings / conflict between a player and the DM when they disagree if something is or is not part of the God's ethos. You may have exceptional players, but most people do not have that luxury.

I do not remember if it made the text (I will have to re-read it), but one of the design points of our system was that if a Cleric did something their deity would not be happy with... it would automatically add one to the failure range. Even if the spell was successful!

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 Post subject: Re: Updated Cleric Class
PostPosted: Tue Aug 30, 2011 4:17 am 
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Mighty-Thewed Reaver

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Hamakto wrote:
...But if you do not put a limiting mechanic in play, you are going to have the clerics run hog wild over your campaign. If they are doing a quest for the ethos, then they will have unlimited casting potential?


Simply being on a quest for ones Deity is not enough to qualify in my games... clerics are expected to be "out and about" & just because they are on a quest doesn't absolve them of their other responsibilities. A cleric of Justica out questing must still set time aside to hear the petitions of folk (high and low born) seeking justice. A cleric of Elyr who fails to seek out & heal all the sick and injured of a town when they arrive (and anyone they meet along the way) is risking permanent excommunication. The rest of the party learns to occupy themselves while the clerics attend their duties; otherwise they lose access to their walking box of band-aids.

Quote:
Sounds like it could open a can of worms. :)

Plus, if my DMing history is any indication.... What is part of the ethos can be subjective and can create some hard feelings / conflict between a player and the DM when they disagree if something is or is not part of the God's ethos. You may have exceptional players, but most people do not have that luxury.


I suppose the potential exists, but I stop most of the problems before they start by clearly defining each of the deities and the duties of the clerics when the player signs on to the cleric character. I also spend time discussing with them in advance what my concepts of "good" & "evil" are so we have those debates before the game happens... It is my opinion that all players can be great players if the DM doesn't take a totalitarian approach to the game and takes the time to understand what interests the player. Players like to know that their opinions matter & might have a chance to change the DMs mind on things.

Quote:
I do not remember if it made the text (I will have to re-read it), but one of the design points of our system was that if a Cleric did something their deity would not be happy with... it would automatically add one to the failure range. Even if the spell was successful!


It does say that. Which gets back to one of my points above; most of the rules input the player receives in terms of their deity's mood is when the deity is peeved. For a player I imagine that's like being blindfolded and wandering through a cluttered room. Personally, I think the Gods portrayed in DCCRPG have the mental and emotional maturity of a 5 year old. There is 1 sentence tucked in at the back of the "sacrifices" section on p. 22 that suggests other possibilities for appeasement.

Quote:
A great deed, quest, or service to a deity may also count as a sacrifice, at the judge’s discretion.


To my mind, none of the healing that a cleric of Elyr performs accrues a penalty; but, clerics are not allowed to kill and are limited to weapons that don't do more than 1d6 stun damage. There are always options to balance things out. :D


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 Post subject: Re: Updated Cleric Class
PostPosted: Tue Aug 30, 2011 8:09 am 
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Deft-Handed Cutpurse

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This all implies that it is the cleric "doing the healing" or "casting the spell". My interpretation is that the cleric is just a conduit. It is the god doing all those things. And that takes work and is distracting. So, the god makes it clear to the cleric that no matter how perfect the activity, there are still limits to the divine power they can channel. That is why sometimes a cleric needs to just pick up a mace or bandage and do the work with their own two hands.


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 Post subject: Re: Updated Cleric Class
PostPosted: Tue Aug 30, 2011 10:54 am 
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Mighty-Thewed Reaver

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meinvt wrote:
This all implies that it is the cleric "doing the healing" or "casting the spell". My interpretation is that the cleric is just a conduit. It is the god doing all those things. And that takes work and is distracting.


Aha! I've deduced the heart the difference in our viewpoints. :D I've never been fond of the clerics are "celestial lightning rods" theory. The Deities in my games are "G" Gods, not "g" gods... Within their spheres of influence they are omnipotent. Otherwise they're just a bunch of cranky posers.

Quote:
So, the god makes it clear to the cleric that no matter how perfect the activity, there are still limits to the divine power they can channel. That is why sometimes a cleric needs to just pick up a mace or bandage and do the work with their own two hands.


To be clear, I never said I would stop using the cumulative -1: just that I'd be more liberal in applying instant good karma to reduce the build up. To me the logic of the accumulating negative to casting/healing is better explained as: repeated exposure to such cosmic power is taxing... causing the cleric to eventually grow too tired to cast or heal. But what about turning checks? I'm not willing to accept that a Deity (especially one with a hatred for undead) could somehow not be effective at some point in the day. "Sorry, your cleric has cheesed off their god by casting too much earlier in the day: so the cleric is passed their freshness date when the mob of zombies creeps out of the room into the hallway..." 8) I say turn check should be free. Let the pass/fail on the die roll be the judge of whether the clerics faith is strong enough to turn back the dead. I don't remember any limits on turning undead in 1e or 2e... but it's been a while since I spent any time with those rule sets.


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 Post subject: Re: Updated Cleric Class
PostPosted: Tue Aug 30, 2011 12:18 pm 
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Deft-Handed Cutpurse

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Location: Central Vermont
Tortog wrote:
just a bunch of cranky posers.


Sure, but they still throw the best parties.


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 Post subject: Re: Updated Cleric Class
PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2011 8:30 pm 
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Mighty-Thewed Reaver

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meinvt wrote:
Tortog wrote:
just a bunch of cranky posers.


Sure, but they still throw the best parties.



:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:


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 Post subject: Re: Updated Cleric Class
PostPosted: Fri Sep 02, 2011 2:01 pm 
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Cold-Blooded Diabolist

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I had an odd thought while driving home yesterday -- Why have a Cleric class at all? Wizards use "patrons" and clerics use "gods." Potato Potaahto in my mind. Make a class called "Adept" or something less wishy-washy and have the adept choose a _Patron_ that grants the traditional abilities of a cleric (healing, turning evil/good, etc). As far as I can tell, "gods" are just patrons with a better mortal organization. You already have wizards with the ability to bind others to their patron. Sounds like religious conversion to me. The "demon," "demigod" "god" "super-deity" are mere tags that the mortals use -- out there in the "Outer Dark" beyond our ken, they are all super powerful beings that grant power to crazy mortals.

Anyway. Just a thought.

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 Post subject: Re: Updated Cleric Class
PostPosted: Sat Sep 03, 2011 1:44 am 
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Chaos-Summoning Sorcerer

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Mr Goodman rejected that idea a long while back.


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 Post subject: Re: Updated Cleric Class
PostPosted: Sun Sep 04, 2011 6:13 pm 
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ragboy wrote:
I had an odd thought while driving home yesterday -- Why have a Cleric class at all? Wizards use "patrons" and clerics use "gods." Potato Potaahto in my mind. Make a class called "Adept" or something less wishy-washy and have the adept choose a _Patron_ that grants the traditional abilities of a cleric (healing, turning evil/good, etc). As far as I can tell, "gods" are just patrons with a better mortal organization. You already have wizards with the ability to bind others to their patron. Sounds like religious conversion to me. The "demon," "demigod" "god" "super-deity" are mere tags that the mortals use -- out there in the "Outer Dark" beyond our ken, they are all super powerful beings that grant power to crazy mortals.

Anyway. Just a thought.

I also think that this is a good idea. It's easily fixed--just don't allow the cleric class, and create a few new patrons. Plus new spells for healing and turning undead.


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 Post subject: Re: Updated Cleric Class
PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2012 2:58 pm 
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Just a thought... why not get rid of disapproval in favor of approval?

Something in the line of Adepts charges in Unknown Armies would be fitting:
The Cleric start its day with zero approval (or with the score of the previous day minus some points, -Gods are not always fair-, or with a default approval score depending on level). By its daily actions (prayers, sacrifices, various deeds), depending on its divinity, it earns "approval Points" that can be spent to "buy" divine interventions (turn enemies of the faith, heal, miraculous spells, etc...).

It would put the service of the god in the center of the cleric life, and not only when disapproval goes too high.

To define a god would be an exercise similar to define a Patron:
- define a deed table to gain approval
- define some broad range "domain spells" related to the divinity domains. The cleric can beg any action that fit into those domain spells (Hopefully, that would avoid the cleric player to have to book-keep 22 spells at level 5)
- optionally, a cost table for the various divine interventions. I guess some miracles would be easier depending on the divinity agenda.

As an added value, clerics will have very different abilities with this system (Wants a Thulsa Doom Official Reptilian Abilities domain spell?). For now, whatever their god is, they look very similar.

The current system of disapproval seems more fitting to express a kind of natural magical ability, with "disapproval" meaning "exhaustion" (I have ideas for some character classes that could use this mechanic).

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