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PA comic: Wednesday Nov. 30, 2011 - The Conflux, Part Four

13

Posts

  • PiptheFairPiptheFair Registered User regular
    Aegeri wrote:
    PiptheFair wrote:
    any good fighter build will obliterate an animal companion at any level

    Not exactly true really, but misses the point entirely again: The druid has an animal companion and is still a druid. So the druid has something that can engage in melee combat comfortably and can still cast spells. So yeah a fighter might be better than a companion, but the fighter has to be better than the companion AND the druid at exactly the same time (And again IMO the fighter isn't even better than the companion in all cases at low levels especially).

    So yes, they are still poorly thought out - it's just not as extreme as 3.5 until much later (where again, the fighter is worthless). Out of curiosity, have you played very high level pathfinder? Because if you haven't, then it's no wonder you think fighters are okay, because at lower levels they sort of are but like 3.5 when you can abuse a wide range of spells (some still infuriatingly ambiguous) that there is a problem.

    I've played multiple adventure paths, completely through

    and action economy is a problem that exists in basically any system that uses standardized turns/actions

    STEAM
    Spoiler:
  • AthenorAthenor Registered User regular
    I can never get into D&D discussions, as I never played the game in an extended campaign.

    My poison is Shadowrun. And my players expect to die at any moment. There is always something bigger than them, bullets don't care about magic, and the void of space is easily accessible for those who have shield/deflect magic.

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    Steam & NNID - Athenor // 3DS: 3883-5283-0471
  • Der Waffle MousDer Waffle Mous WALK 3X FASTER New Yark, New Yark.Registered User regular
    Dragons care not about bullets.

    They do have a crippling weakness against carbombs, though.

    zaku.png
    Steam PSN: DerWaffleMous Origin: DerWaffleMous Bnet: WaffleMous#1483
  • PiptheFairPiptheFair Registered User regular
    Dragons care not about bullets.

    They do have a crippling weakness against carbombs, though.

    rip dunkelzahn

    STEAM
    Spoiler:
  • valiancevaliance Registered User regular
    Pathfinder is hardly old school. If you want real old school feel go for one of the "retro-clone" old school renaissance games like Swords and Wizardry http://www.swordsandwizardry.com/corerulesproducts.htm or better yet Crypts & Things http://d101games.co.uk/books/crypts-and-things/

    I am all about this OSR old school revolution stuff. labyrinth lord, LOTFP, S&W, OSRIC

  • PMAversPMAvers You wouldn't have heard of it, anyway...Registered User regular
    edited December 2011
    Athenor wrote:
    I can never get into D&D discussions, as I never played the game in an extended campaign.

    My poison is Shadowrun. And my players expect to die at any moment. There is always something bigger than them, bullets don't care about magic, and the void of space is easily accessible for those who have shield/deflect magic.

    I just realized I havn't played in a Shadowrun storyline event at GenCon in ages. Those were always a blast, especially since somehow Fate decreed that I'd end up playing with the same guys at my table every year for like four years straight.

    The Renraku Cleanup event was... something, to say the least. The Tomb of Horrors would've looked green with envy at the body count. Something like 30 runners, split into six teams. Only around five or six made it to the end.

    PMAvers on
    persona4celestia.jpg
    COME FORTH, AMATERASU!
  • AlphastreamAlphastream Registered User
    It's great that Gabe is trying out a new game. Everyone should try as many RPGs and editions of RPGs as they can. It gives you greater perspective and better tools with which to play whatever game happens to be your favorite. New games also keep you fresh - they prevent or at least forestall what for most is an inevitable burnout regardless of the quality of any one RPG/edition. Pathfinder (like D&D and so many RPGs) is a great game and we should all want to encourage a gamer to try it.

    But the comic really leaves me puzzled. Did they not realize the comic and blog post basically says that Pathfinder is better? We can set aside the strange comparison of an intro boxed set to Epic play (which has never been perfect in any edition). Do they really not know the effects of that at a time when edition wars have divided our hobby and prevented much needed collaboration and community? Did they really think through how "Old Testament" is both inaccurate and inflammatory? I expected more from these guys, who otherwise work to promote the hobbies of gaming in appropriate ways. Then again, I also thought they would do a better job of giving both WotC and all other RPG companies better locations at PAX. If the idea is to promote RPGs being attractive to video game players they have a lot of room for improvement.

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  • MaddnessMaddness Registered User
    edited December 2011
    Wait a freaking second. Trying Pathfinder is a horribly dumb idea if the whole purpose of the game is to challenge people. The chief criticism of 3.5E/Pathfinder that I've seen people who both hate and love the system is the fact that its next to impossible to challenge people because of how horribly disjointed, bad, and inconsistent the combat system is. Its also not that big of a difference between the two systems except that 4th is cleaner in implementation meaning that all of the problems are going to be compounded.
    Epic play (which has never been perfect in any edition).
    Actually, Epic play in 4th edition is pretty fun. The problem is that if you don't know the system very well its seems like power glut but in reality Epic tier is the demigod tier. Its always been the demigod tier. I'm pretty sure I've seen people in this forum describe it as the "Death is only a speedbump" tier.

    Maddness on
  • Jam WarriorJam Warrior Registered User regular
    Maddness wrote:
    Actually, Epic play in 4th edition is pretty fun. The problem is that if you don't know the system very well its seems like power glut but in reality Epic tier is the demigod tier. Its always been the demigod tier. I'm pretty sure I've seen people in this forum describe it as the "Death is only a speedbump" tier.

    As an example of this, et level 20 in 4e you choose your Epic Destiny which is your intended route to immortality. A typical starting line for an epic destiny granted power will be:
    Trigger: Once a day when you die...

    TingleSigBar.gif
    WiiU: JamWarrior
  • MaddnessMaddness Registered User
    edited December 2011
    Maddness wrote:
    Actually, Epic play in 4th edition is pretty fun. The problem is that if you don't know the system very well its seems like power glut but in reality Epic tier is the demigod tier. Its always been the demigod tier. I'm pretty sure I've seen people in this forum describe it as the "Death is only a speedbump" tier.

    As an example of this, et level 20 in 4e you choose your Epic Destiny which is your intended route to immortality. A typical starting line for an epic destiny granted power will be:
    Trigger: Once a day when you die...
    Which of course has always been like that since the very first Players Handbook.

    Maddness on
  • caubocalypsecaubocalypse Registered User
    Let me start off saying I'm a huge fan of Pathfinder. I own more of their products than I like to admit (although Paizo sure is happy I own all this stuff). I GM constantly for Pathfinder Society (organized play campaign) and run a Pathfinder AP home game.

    The thing about Pathfinder is that it really fixed and streamlined issues from 3.5. While you can take 3.5 and easily use it with PF, the stuff Paizo puts out and is largely balanced. One thing is that they've drifted away from Prestige Classes and moved towards Archetypes, which is where I think a lot of problems arose in 3.5. There are no more save or die spells, usually you have to fail two saves or get hit with an attack then fail a save.

    With the Core, Paizo did a lot of work to curb the madness of epic levels. "Epic" in Pathfinder are levels 15-20. I mean, it is not everyday that you see a level 19 cleric walking down the street. And they've taken this idea and used it as a guide for shaping the world of Golarion (Pathfinder's setting). But have no fear, I'm certain you'll see "mythic" level (post-20) rules get released sooner than later from Paizo.

    /If you don't think you can be challenged in Pathfinder at any level, come down to Atlanta and take a seat at my table.
    //I get that same look Tycho does every time new players sit at my table.
    ///Floods, Plagues, and Pillars of motherfuckin' Salt indeed.

  • ZzuluZzulu Registered User regular
    d and d comics are not for me

    t5qfc9.jpg
  • MaddnessMaddness Registered User

    The thing about Pathfinder is that it really fixed and streamlined issues from 3.5. While you can take 3.5 and easily use it with PF, the stuff Paizo puts out and is largely balanced. One thing is that they've drifted away from Prestige Classes and moved towards Archetypes, which is where I think a lot of problems arose in 3.5. There are no more save or die spells, usually you have to fail two saves or get hit with an attack then fail a save.
    Yeah then explain to me why the creator of the game actually admits that there are certain imbalanced aspects of the game just because of fluff reasons.

  • Loopy1492Loopy1492 Registered User regular
    Impossible to challenge people? Inconsistent, disjointed, and bad combat system?

    Whatever it is you have, dude, PASS that shit!

  • MaddnessMaddness Registered User
    edited December 2011
    Loopy1492 wrote:
    Impossible to challenge people? Inconsistent, disjointed, and bad combat system?

    Whatever it is you have, dude, PASS that shit!
    You mean a brain. Remember Pathfinder for all intents and purposes is using a system that its creator said was purposefully designed to screw over new people due to abject ignorance and it really didn't change all that much from 3.5E to Pathfinder.

    Maddness on
  • MagicPrimeMagicPrime "We're ready to believe you..." FireSideWizardRegistered User regular
    edited December 2011
    Some of the stuff people bring up to example the over-power of casters isn't even possible in the PF ruleset.

    I mean, 'Iron Guard' or whatever isn't even a spell.
    And you can't summon a Balor Demon, even with Summon Monster IX.

    And all this is assuming that the Fighter always fails his Saves, the Caster always passes his Touch Attacks and/or Concentration checks.

    MagicPrime on
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    This neo-feudalism would be more tolerable if our betters had fancy titles.
  • admanbadmanb the bored genie Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    edited December 2011
    It's great that Gabe is trying out a new game. Everyone should try as many RPGs and editions of RPGs as they can. It gives you greater perspective and better tools with which to play whatever game happens to be your favorite. New games also keep you fresh - they prevent or at least forestall what for most is an inevitable burnout regardless of the quality of any one RPG/edition. Pathfinder (like D&D and so many RPGs) is a great game and we should all want to encourage a gamer to try it.

    But the comic really leaves me puzzled. Did they not realize the comic and blog post basically says that Pathfinder is better? We can set aside the strange comparison of an intro boxed set to Epic play (which has never been perfect in any edition). Do they really not know the effects of that at a time when edition wars have divided our hobby and prevented much needed collaboration and community? Did they really think through how "Old Testament" is both inaccurate and inflammatory? I expected more from these guys, who otherwise work to promote the hobbies of gaming in appropriate ways. Then again, I also thought they would do a better job of giving both WotC and all other RPG companies better locations at PAX. If the idea is to promote RPGs being attractive to video game players they have a lot of room for improvement.

    ... it is a three-panel comic on the internet.

    admanb on
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  • Loopy1492Loopy1492 Registered User regular
    True, admanb, but it has surfaced an argument that runs deep in the industry's being, like the roots of an ancient Ent who's soul has grown black with taint. Not talking about it anymore is probably a good idea, though.

  • Der Waffle MousDer Waffle Mous WALK 3X FASTER New Yark, New Yark.Registered User regular
    MagicPrime wrote:
    Some of the stuff people bring up to example the over-power of casters isn't even possible in the PF ruleset.

    I mean, 'Iron Guard' or whatever isn't even a spell.
    And you can't summon a Balor Demon, even with Summon Monster IX.

    And all this is assuming that the Fighter always fails his Saves, the Caster always passes his Touch Attacks and/or Concentration checks.
    The problem is, the second any one of those things happens, the fighter is either dead or otherwise completely fucked.

    Which still isn't addressing the other, arguably large problem of the caster being able to fill any role in the party, better than the classes dedicated to that role, for a minimal investment.


    Also, WOTC had half of the Halofest building dedicated to their stuff. I know Paizo's presence wasn't as large, but they had their own panel, and Privateer Press's booth was awesome.

    zaku.png
    Steam PSN: DerWaffleMous Origin: DerWaffleMous Bnet: WaffleMous#1483
  • admanbadmanb the bored genie Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    Loopy1492 wrote:
    True, admanb, but it has surfaced an argument that runs deep in the industry's being, like the roots of an ancient Ent who's soul has grown black with taint. Not talking about it anymore is probably a good idea, though.

    There are a lot of arguments that run deep that are also dumb as shit.

    twitter, github, resume/portfolio, if you like to play or host boardgames online, check out handtracker
  • caubocalypsecaubocalypse Registered User
    Maddness wrote:
    You mean a brain. Remember Pathfinder for all intents and purposes is using a system that its creator said was purposefully designed to screw over new people due to abject ignorance and it really didn't change all that much from 3.5E to Pathfinder.


    Mind digging up some quotes? I would love to respond but I can't really do that to nebulous "well their game creator says" without seeing what was actually said.

  • MaddnessMaddness Registered User
    edited December 2011

    You've never actually seen Monte Cook's Ivory Tower article about 3E.
    http://www.montecook.com/cgi-bin/page.cgi?mc_los_142

    Maddness on
  • The Good Doctor TranThe Good Doctor Tran Registered User regular
    admanb wrote: »
    Loopy1492 wrote:
    True, admanb, but it has surfaced an argument that runs deep in the industry's being, like the roots of an ancient Ent who's soul has grown black with taint. Not talking about it anymore is probably a good idea, though.

    There are a lot of arguments that run deep that are also dumb as shit.

    This, pretty much. Why is it remotely PA's problem that RPGamers are so infantile they can't agree to disagree and play the game they enjoy more? Or, god forbid, play both? If the 'community' of 'our hobby' needs Mike and Jerry to come down from the mountain and get everyone to sing Kumbaya, that's a long wait for a train don't come.

    They are both good games. If you're concerned about the argument over which one is better I suggest not having the argument anymore.

    LoL & Spiral Knights & MC & SMNC: Carrington - Origin: CarringtonPlus - Steam: skdrtran
  • MaddnessMaddness Registered User
    admanb wrote: »
    Loopy1492 wrote:
    True, admanb, but it has surfaced an argument that runs deep in the industry's being, like the roots of an ancient Ent who's soul has grown black with taint. Not talking about it anymore is probably a good idea, though.

    There are a lot of arguments that run deep that are also dumb as shit.

    This, pretty much. Why is it remotely PA's problem that RPGamers are so infantile they can't agree to disagree and play the game they enjoy more? Or, god forbid, play both? If the 'community' of 'our hobby' needs Mike and Jerry to come down from the mountain and get everyone to sing Kumbaya, that's a long wait for a train don't come.

    They are both good games. If you're concerned about the argument over which one is better I suggest not having the argument anymore.
    No not really. Gabe and Tycho did actually provide a pretty subjective and measurable quantity in terms of game play. If complicated mechanics is their problem then well neither system is good with Pathfinder being worst.

  • Loopy1492Loopy1492 Registered User regular
    edited December 2011
    They are both good games. If you're concerned about the argument over which one is better I suggest not having the argument anymore.

    Exactly. They are two games, each with a strong following and each with its own benefits and flaws which lend themselves to different play styles and different personalities. I, personally, choose not to run 4e. It is not what my group is looking for in a fantasy RPG.

    However, for fun, we sometimes pick up the 4e-ish Ravenloft board game. That's fun for an off-evening and we can easily include kids. We also have been running a Star Wars Saga Edition game. I think that system works rather well with the Star Wars universe and I actually do wish they'd gone full 4e with it (well, actually, I wish my buddy was interested in running the d6 version, but that's a whole different conversation LOL).

    Loopy1492 on
  • The Good Doctor TranThe Good Doctor Tran Registered User regular
    Maddness wrote: »
    admanb wrote: »
    Loopy1492 wrote:
    True, admanb, but it has surfaced an argument that runs deep in the industry's being, like the roots of an ancient Ent who's soul has grown black with taint. Not talking about it anymore is probably a good idea, though.

    There are a lot of arguments that run deep that are also dumb as shit.

    This, pretty much. Why is it remotely PA's problem that RPGamers are so infantile they can't agree to disagree and play the game they enjoy more? Or, god forbid, play both? If the 'community' of 'our hobby' needs Mike and Jerry to come down from the mountain and get everyone to sing Kumbaya, that's a long wait for a train don't come.

    They are both good games. If you're concerned about the argument over which one is better I suggest not having the argument anymore.
    No not really. Gabe and Tycho did actually provide a pretty subjective and measurable quantity in terms of game play. If complicated mechanics is their problem then well neither system is good with Pathfinder being worst.

    They pretty clearly stated the problem was power creep. You know, like where Tycho says: "Fourth Edition suffers under an especially heavy yoke when it comes to power creep in our experience". I don't know where you're getting mechanics from.

    LoL & Spiral Knights & MC & SMNC: Carrington - Origin: CarringtonPlus - Steam: skdrtran
  • GabrielGabriel Registered User, ClubPA, Penny Arcade Staff, PAX Staff staff
    Just as a heads up. Space in the comic strip can not be purchased.

    Carry On.

  • MaddnessMaddness Registered User
    edited December 2011
    They pretty clearly stated the problem was power creep. You know, like where Tycho says: "Fourth Edition suffers under an especially heavy yoke when it comes to power creep in our experience". I don't know where you're getting mechanics from.
    No they really didn't state it clearly enough because I'm entirely confused as to what is different in Pathfinder. A level 1 Wizard in Pathfinder has access to twenty different spells. And note it doesn't actually work like it does in 4th edition. You literally have the choice of twenty different spells to pick from. A level 1 Cleric has the same number of choices more or less.

    Maddness on
  • The Good Doctor TranThe Good Doctor Tran Registered User regular
    Maddness wrote: »
    They pretty clearly stated the problem was power creep. You know, like where Tycho says: "Fourth Edition suffers under an especially heavy yoke when it comes to power creep in our experience". I don't know where you're getting mechanics from.
    No they really didn't state it clearly enough because I'm entirely confused as to what is different in Pathfinder. A level 1 Wizard in Pathfinder has access to twenty different spells. And note it doesn't actually work like it does in 4th edition. You literally have the choice of twenty different spells to pick from. A level 1 Cleric has the same number of choices more or less.

    But that's mechanical complexity. Their concern was power creep. They are hoping that epic level power will be easier to balance against in Pathfinder than 4e. Whether or not this is the case is up for debate, but you keep bringing up points having to do with choices, which isn't what's at issue.

    LoL & Spiral Knights & MC & SMNC: Carrington - Origin: CarringtonPlus - Steam: skdrtran
  • Der Waffle MousDer Waffle Mous WALK 3X FASTER New Yark, New Yark.Registered User regular
    Really, it's not even up for debate. There's a reason why a lot of the official material suggests stopping character progression a little more than halfway up the totem pole.

    Honestly for all my edition warrior bullshit and distaste for that edition, I'm not that bothered by the fact that Gabe is trying Pathfinder. If he enjoys it, more power to him and his group.

    I'm actually pretty damn sympathetic towards his complaint that the amount of information start dealing with on your character sheet starts getting pretty damn overwhelming and/or distracting. It's just that porting characters over into a high level PF game is just going to make things worse.

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  • AegeriAegeri Registered User regular
    Maddness wrote: »
    They pretty clearly stated the problem was power creep. You know, like where Tycho says: "Fourth Edition suffers under an especially heavy yoke when it comes to power creep in our experience". I don't know where you're getting mechanics from.
    No they really didn't state it clearly enough because I'm entirely confused as to what is different in Pathfinder. A level 1 Wizard in Pathfinder has access to twenty different spells. And note it doesn't actually work like it does in 4th edition. You literally have the choice of twenty different spells to pick from. A level 1 Cleric has the same number of choices more or less.

    But that's mechanical complexity. Their concern was power creep. They are hoping that epic level power will be easier to balance against in Pathfinder than 4e.

    Yeah, they're totally going to get an awful surprise there. Epic play in Pathfinder is just as broken as it is in 3.5, for basically the exact same reasons. But bear in mind, that fans of Pathfinder/3.5 are basically happy with that if they aren't continually playing in the "sweet spot". 4E has actually made great strides in reducing its power creep in epic, creating improved creatures and generally being more coherent. Core problems like "Having a ton of powers" is always going to be an issue in 4E and not one that is easily solved. Then again, this isn't solved with Pathfinder either, as spellcasters at epic have an exponential amount of choices and far more flexibility power within those choices than 4E.

    The point is that I have experience (extensive experience) with 3.5 epic play, a lot of 4E epic experience (wrote extensively on it) and have played in epic level pathfinder games. From my impressions, Epic Pathfinder was just about as broken as 3.5 - differently broken, but still entirely broken. 4E is also broken, but it's broken not because one guy can do everything and one guy does one thing that's no longer as useful - which is more important to me.

    I would even say if Gabe wanted to do something different, there was also Fourthcore as an option. Which blends 4E mechanics with older 2E/3E concepts like save or die effects.

  • sunnykodasunnykoda Registered User regular
    He should have pulled out Rolemaster...

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  • AegeriAegeri Registered User regular
    Or Call of Cthulhu. What do you mean just looking at Astaroth melts my brain out my ears and that encountering him directly in the first place is doing it wrong.

  • LincolnSmashLincolnSmash Registered User
    edited December 2011
    IMHO, it's pretty bad to look at mechanics in isolation from actual play, no matter what 'side' you're on, since RPGs are an inherently social medium where the real important stuff only happens once you have real people interacting with the procedures and rules laid out in the text. The real question is, "Does this game produce fun for my group when we sit down to play?" The answer is going to be different for every group, or maybe even variations of the same group with some people left out or a few new people added in.

    For a lot of people, 4e fixed things that were actively getting in the way of their fun. Other people weren't bothered by those things, and continued to play 3.5 or migrated to Pathfinder. Does 3.x have a lot of weird mechanical oddities when you look at it on paper? No doubt. Can that sometimes crop up in play? Certainly. But that doesn't mean it's going to ruin the game for you, or necessarily get in the way of your fun. A lot of this is just subjective taste about how the game unfolds in play, and no amount of math-crunching is ever going to replace what happens at the table and the feelings of fun (or unfun) that you get from that. Personally, while I can admire the design of 4e as being elegant, it doesn't hold up for me in actual play for the long-term campaigns when I'm playing a PC. But when I GM? I would much rather run 4e than 3.x -- it's just more fun for me as a GM than 3.x/PF. It's weird, but it's the way it is for me. Ultimately I'm not that big on either 3e or 4e (more of a Burning Wheel or FATE guy), but I can still have fun playing them.

    While I think that technical and formal quality of a work of design or art is important, what's most important is how that piece of work speaks to us or how we interact with it as individuals. I'm sure everyone here likes a band or a writer or an artist who isn't that good by technical standards, but whose work still connects with them on a personal level in a way that even more talented musicians or artists couldn't. Similarly, while I recognize that we've come a long way since TSR-era D&D in terms of design and understanding how games work, my group of friends is still having fun playing Basic D&D. It's not nostalgia, either, as most of us are in our early 20s. We've just figured out how to make the game work for us at the table. Better designs have failed to produce fun for us as a group.

    So if Gabe has found a game that he really digs and he wants to try it out with his group, why not? If it works for his group, they'll play it and have fun. If it doesn't, they'll move on to something else. Just like the rest of us have done: 4e players, Pathfinder players, or people who play the lots of other cool RPGs out there. We can all argue about how messy, tidy, balanced, unbalanced, or whatever else each edition is, but that's not going to change whether or not someone enjoys 4e or Pathfinder. They just have to figure that out for themselves.

    Anyway, sorry for the rant.

    LincolnSmash on
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  • AegeriAegeri Registered User regular
    edited December 2011
    Actually I much prefer 2E to 3E and Pathfinder if I am going for that "style" of game. In fact, I had more fun playing 1E for a laugh than I ever did with 3E. Personally, while 2E shares many of the same problems, 3E exacerbated all the problems that magic had to such an extreme there was no going back (Pathfinder simply did not do enough). While 2E has some illogical elements to it, there is a sort of charm in the way the game works that I still enjoy even now. I wouldn't want to run 2E on a very long term basis, but I do enjoy the system for amusement now and again. I just actively hate 3E, after it basically provided the most miserable roleplaying (arguably more "Mechanically abuse the incredibly broken system-playing") experiences of my life. It soured me so very much that I didn't even take an interest in 4E until literally a month before it was released (games day). Otherwise I would have stuck with my WoD or Call of Cthulhu.

    Better design has more than made me appreciate the way 4E works, yet very bad design (The core of how 3.5 works, which is still in Pathfinder IMO) has more than made for numerous unpleasant gaming sessions.

    Aegeri on
  • AurichAurich Registered User regular
    Gabriel wrote:
    Just as a heads up. Space in the comic strip can not be purchased.

    Carry On.

    I'm going to have to rethink my christmas gift for my little brother.

  • The Good Doctor TranThe Good Doctor Tran Registered User regular
    Aegeri wrote: »
    Maddness wrote: »
    They pretty clearly stated the problem was power creep. You know, like where Tycho says: "Fourth Edition suffers under an especially heavy yoke when it comes to power creep in our experience". I don't know where you're getting mechanics from.
    No they really didn't state it clearly enough because I'm entirely confused as to what is different in Pathfinder. A level 1 Wizard in Pathfinder has access to twenty different spells. And note it doesn't actually work like it does in 4th edition. You literally have the choice of twenty different spells to pick from. A level 1 Cleric has the same number of choices more or less.

    But that's mechanical complexity. Their concern was power creep. They are hoping that epic level power will be easier to balance against in Pathfinder than 4e.

    Yeah, they're totally going to get an awful surprise there. Epic play in Pathfinder is just as broken as it is in 3.5, for basically the exact same reasons.

    I do wonder if the solution isn't simply to reduce the ceiling of epic for non-power gamers. Just say 20 is cap, lower damage thresholds across the board for 'epic' threats that you want to use and go from there.

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  • rahkeesh2000rahkeesh2000 Registered User regular
    Long time fan who registered just to offer a few clarifications that I hope Gabe/Tycho might read.

    First if you're looking to convert existing 4E characters to 3E/pathfinder, I would not do a straight level conversion. 4E Wizards are just barely unlocking the equivalents of 3E 9th level spells as they approach 30. This means that level 13 would be a more even starting point. But I think this is likely obvious to them as Pathfinder itself doesn't even support 20+ play.

    Second as mentioned, high-level 3E is even worse than 4E, including pathfinder. There are many topics on the Pathfinder forums where numerous fans talk about level 12-15 being a retirement point. Every time support for true Epic (20+) is brought up, people start complaining that the last 5 levels need a rewrite first. For players who never touched 3E before jumping straight into that level of complexity will be insane, and even if you figure it out, even more slow and bogged down than 4E. If you somehow convince your players to start at low levels while continuing the campaign then great, otherwise this wouldn't pan out so well.

    Third, I would suggest getting Tycho to read over the free materials on True 20 if he hasn't already. It is OGL and based on 3rd edition, but vastly, vastly simplified. Most importantly casters have a small list of saner powers that can be easily controlled or added to. With the more flexible character building system, you may have an easier time replicating the specific power configuration of your existing 4E classes. Although simplified the rules are still very close to d20, and converting 3E content to work in the system, or doing a hybrid inbetween the two, is very reasonable.

    Fourth, there are some pretty simple things you can do within 4E, if you can get your players to accept them. As for the challenge side you might check out Fourthcore for some lessons as to how 4E can be as deadly and terrifying as the modules of old. From anecdotes I have found on the net, those that do DM epic levels find the WotC encounter guidelines need modification, such as running monsters 2 levels higher than expected, or setting up for a handful of long, large encounters with alot of room, and increasing player XP per encounter to accomodate the slower rate of combat so you don't need to spend so much time on it to level up.

    On the other side, if you are tripping over too many 4E power cards, you could take the contraversial approach of limiting them. For example, remove the lower one or two daily and encounter powers from your characters. The utility list should also be trimmed in a similar way, perhaps to half it's size. You might even simplify down to one or two utilities, but allow them to be used a certain multiple of times. You could even allow the two higher level daily/encounter powers of your characters to be used twice if you don't want to strip their power as much, or a psuedo-point system such as "you can use either of your two daily powers a combined total of 3 times per day", etc. The uses on magic items can also be dropped back down to one per day, or you can stop awarding uses on milestones.

    Really if your 4E problem is literally "too many combat decisions" then cutting back on those decisions is the most direct fix, and with the modularity of 4E powers this is fairly easy to do. The only trouble would be getting your player characters to accept direct nerfs, they rarely excite anyone, wheras will often be swallowed gladly if it's in the guise of something new.

  • jwalkjwalk Registered User regular
    You just need better dice.

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