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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4285 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 66 - most online ever: 565 (October 17, 2020, 02:08:06 PM)
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Author Topic: D&D and the Strategy Guide concept  (Read 13077 times)
Mike Holmes
Acts of Evil Playtesters
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Posts: 10459


« Reply #45 on: July 21, 2004, 11:51:30 AM »

Ethan, when I said CA, I meant "subset of Gamism CA." That is, I'm guessing that the idea of Gentlemen Gamism would be foreign to them, or just not to their tastes? That they're more Powergamers?

Hans, that's a pretty large delta. But, again, I ask, was it player lack of skill, or are the Iconic's paragons of design? If the latter, then it seems to me like this is a design flaw to use these characters as the baseline. If the former, well, then the players just didn't play up to par.

Mike
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Member of Indie Netgaming
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inky
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Posts: 51


« Reply #46 on: July 21, 2004, 12:03:10 PM »

Quote from: hanschristianandersen

This also implies that the game's monsters and challenge ratings were calibrated w.r.t. the effectiveness of the Iconics at each experience level.


I think this is without question the case. If you look at a more experienced d20 forum like enworld or rec.games.frp.dnd, you can see a number of examples of monsters that have a relatively low challenge rating because they have some weak spot, or adventures aimed at a certain level that require a high-level cleric able to turn undead, or a high-level rogue able to detect certain traps, or something of that nature. If a group doesn't have the character breakdown expected (a common problem being unfocused power due to multiclassing, or not having some archetype) of course they'll run into problems. This doesn't make the game unplayable or anything, but certainly a group will run into problems if the DM blindly tries to run adventures out of the box without seeing how they match with the characters. One thing you can perhaps blame the game for is not making this more explicit; but it's hard to cover all the details, and it does do it to some extent (eg, the hydra's description talks about how it's aimed at parties with the Improved Sunder feat).
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Dan Shiovitz
hanschristianandersen
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Posts: 102


« Reply #47 on: July 21, 2004, 01:09:07 PM »

Quote from: Mike
If the latter, then it seems to me like this is a design flaw to use these characters as the baseline. If the former, well, then the players just didn't play up to par.


Beats me.  If I had to guess, I'd say it was probably a bit of each.

Like I said a few posts ago, my games rarely go above 7th level.  Within that range, there's plenty of room to play a non-optimal character (for reason's of Style Points, or Gentleman's Handicap, or I'm Tired Of Optimizing And Just Want To Hack Something) while still remaining effective.
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Hans Christian Andersen V.
Yes, that's my name.  No relation.
Halzebier
Member

Posts: 216


« Reply #48 on: July 21, 2004, 02:18:54 PM »

Quote from: Mike Holmes
I ask, was it player lack of skill, or are the Iconic's paragons of design? If the latter, then it seems to me like this is a design flaw to use these characters as the baseline. If the former, well, then the players just didn't play up to par.


Our group played "The Bastion of Broken Souls", i.e. the last adventure of the Adventure Path series, as the capstone to our 1st to 20th level campaign.

We found it way too easy, so the DM upped all ECLs by at least two early on. We also thought the stock characters were weak compared to ours.

However, our characters had three advantages:

(a) Slightly higher hit points, as we had a house rule that stated a hit die could not result in less than half the maximum. That amounts to about 1 additional hp/level (less for wizards, more for barbarians).

(b) Equipment was optimized. We had only our level's due, but all the equipment was handpicked, i.e. none of our wealth was tied up in non-optimal items. This is potentially a big advantage.

(c) One character had a sorcerer cohort, who practically functioned as a fifth character. That's perfectly within the rules (feat, XP and treasure shares included), but seems like an overpowered option in retrospect.

That said, we partially nerfed _Haste_ (which hurt us more than it did the monsters) and banned _Planar Ally_ (which is insanely powerful under 3e under all but the most unfavourable reading).

Regards,

Hal
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Ben Lehman
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Posts: 2094

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« Reply #49 on: July 21, 2004, 10:02:32 PM »

Quote from: Mike Holmes

Hans, Ethan, OK, so given that apparently one can play with handicapped characters, what does that say about Ethan's experience? I'm guessing that maybe this has to be a group CA for it to work? That is, Ethan didn't feel that way because there was no support for playing a sucky character well amongst the group?


BL>  I'd reckon that this is simply the difference between batting left-handed as a handicap and batting left handed because you don't know how to hold the bat.  One generates respect, the other derision.

yrs--
--Ben
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