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Idea on deciding which feats/PrCs/etc to allow

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Anonymous
June 24, 2005 1:28:56 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Here's what you do as DM:

Pick a conservative group of books from which all options will be
allowed... For example, PHB, DMG, and the four "Complete" books.

Allow other stuff on a case-by-case basis.

If a player wants to use something not in your group of "allowed" books,
get online.

Go to your favorite search engine.

Do a web search using keywords "Character" "Optimization" "XXX", where
"XXX" is the feat/PrC/whatever in question.

If it is mentioned more than two or three times on the WotC Character
Optimization boards, it is right out.

This handily eliminates such over-the-top nonsense as "Nymph's Kiss",
"Vow of Poverty", and "Item Familiar".

Enjoy!

- Ron ^*^
Anonymous
June 24, 2005 6:10:40 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Werebat wrote:
> Here's what you do as DM:
>
> Pick a conservative group of books from which all options will be
> allowed... For example, PHB, DMG, and the four "Complete" books.
>
> Allow other stuff on a case-by-case basis.
>
> If a player wants to use something not in your group of "allowed" books,
> get online.
>
> Go to your favorite search engine.
>
> Do a web search using keywords "Character" "Optimization" "XXX", where
> "XXX" is the feat/PrC/whatever in question.
>
> If it is mentioned more than two or three times on the WotC Character
> Optimization boards, it is right out.
>
> This handily eliminates such over-the-top nonsense as "Nymph's Kiss",
> "Vow of Poverty", and "Item Familiar".

I actually do this (except I don't really have to search Google, since
I read the CO board regularly).

The method needs more finesse, though; there are plenty of character
options that are perfectly well balanced (and very interesting), except
for a weird rules abuse or two which puts them over the top. Sublime
Chord is a perfect example (and you'll find it all over the CO board).
In these cases, it's much better to ban the specific rules abuse, not
the whole option.

Laszlo
Anonymous
June 24, 2005 9:19:39 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Werebat wrote:
> laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu wrote:
> >
> > Werebat wrote:
> >
> >>Here's what you do as DM:
> >>
> >>Pick a conservative group of books from which all options will be
> >>allowed... For example, PHB, DMG, and the four "Complete" books.
> >>
> >>Allow other stuff on a case-by-case basis.
> >>
> >>If a player wants to use something not in your group of "allowed" books,
> >>get online.
> >>
> >>Go to your favorite search engine.
> >>
> >>Do a web search using keywords "Character" "Optimization" "XXX", where
> >>"XXX" is the feat/PrC/whatever in question.
> >>
> >>If it is mentioned more than two or three times on the WotC Character
> >>Optimization boards, it is right out.
> >>
> >>This handily eliminates such over-the-top nonsense as "Nymph's Kiss",
> >>"Vow of Poverty", and "Item Familiar".
> >
> >
> > I actually do this (except I don't really have to search Google, since
> > I read the CO board regularly).
> >
> > The method needs more finesse, though; there are plenty of character
> > options that are perfectly well balanced (and very interesting), except
> > for a weird rules abuse or two which puts them over the top. Sublime
> > Chord is a perfect example (and you'll find it all over the CO board).
> > In these cases, it's much better to ban the specific rules abuse, not
> > the whole option.
>
> Unfortunately, you are right.
>
> The problem is that some players, once they realize this, will try to
> finagle the same way they do when they don't have a rule like this
> staring them in the face.
>
> "Well it's really not any more powerful than Power Attack, when you
> think about it..."
>
> Bah.
>
> It's best to just stick with the hard and fast rule. The loss of
> Sublime Chord, etc. is a little sad, but much less annoying than opening
> up a can of worms for the finagling player to do his cat's cradle BS with.
>
> If you're fortunate enough to not have such a player, being lenient is
> more of an option. If you do have such a player, though, they'll sense
> your "weakness" and pounce.

I know the feeling. I _do_ have such a player. To avoid problems, I
always tell my players to tell me their character advancement plans in
advance, especially if they're planning on some funky combo or obscure
feat. That way, they won't be unpleasantly surprised.

I still catch flak for it sometimes, though. In my current campaign,
one of my players was playing a Whisper Gnome rogue. He wanted to take
Titan Fighting (Races of Stone, I think). I took one look at the feat,
declared it overpowered, and suggested some fixes.

Well, he didn't like any of the fixes, and ended up not taking the
feat. In the next battle, he rushed straight into a mass of monsters
and got killed (he's not the most tactically adept person). I'm still
getting flak about how his poor gnome would have survived if I'd let
him take the feat.

This player always keeps me on my toes... before the gnome, his last
character was a Dweomerkeeper, which should ring warning bells for
anyone who's familiar with the class.

> Just out of curiosity -- what's your take on the Radiant Servant of Pelor?

I'll answer this tonight, when I have access to my books.

> On Kineticists with Energy Stun and Energy Missile?

There are very few truly overpowered psionic powers. Energy Stun,
Energy Missile, and Ego Whip are the three big ones (I'm still on the
fence about Vigor).

I'd nerf all three. They are far too powerful and versatile.

> On Raptorian clerics with racial substitution levels?

Again, I'll have to check my books. I've never had a Raptorian PC.

Laszlo
Related resources
Anonymous
June 24, 2005 11:11:50 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu wrote:
>
> Werebat wrote:
>
>>Here's what you do as DM:
>>
>>Pick a conservative group of books from which all options will be
>>allowed... For example, PHB, DMG, and the four "Complete" books.
>>
>>Allow other stuff on a case-by-case basis.
>>
>>If a player wants to use something not in your group of "allowed" books,
>>get online.
>>
>>Go to your favorite search engine.
>>
>>Do a web search using keywords "Character" "Optimization" "XXX", where
>>"XXX" is the feat/PrC/whatever in question.
>>
>>If it is mentioned more than two or three times on the WotC Character
>>Optimization boards, it is right out.
>>
>>This handily eliminates such over-the-top nonsense as "Nymph's Kiss",
>>"Vow of Poverty", and "Item Familiar".
>
>
> I actually do this (except I don't really have to search Google, since
> I read the CO board regularly).
>
> The method needs more finesse, though; there are plenty of character
> options that are perfectly well balanced (and very interesting), except
> for a weird rules abuse or two which puts them over the top. Sublime
> Chord is a perfect example (and you'll find it all over the CO board).
> In these cases, it's much better to ban the specific rules abuse, not
> the whole option.

Unfortunately, you are right.

The problem is that some players, once they realize this, will try to
finagle the same way they do when they don't have a rule like this
staring them in the face.

"Well it's really not any more powerful than Power Attack, when you
think about it..."

Bah.

It's best to just stick with the hard and fast rule. The loss of
Sublime Chord, etc. is a little sad, but much less annoying than opening
up a can of worms for the finagling player to do his cat's cradle BS with.

If you're fortunate enough to not have such a player, being lenient is
more of an option. If you do have such a player, though, they'll sense
your "weakness" and pounce.

Just out of curiosity -- what's your take on the Radiant Servant of Pelor?

On Kineticists with Energy Stun and Energy Missile?

On Raptorian clerics with racial substitution levels?

- Ron ^*^
Anonymous
June 24, 2005 3:58:53 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Werebat wrote:
> Here's what you do as DM:
>
> Pick a conservative group of books from which all options will be
> allowed... For example, PHB, DMG, and the four "Complete" books.
>
> Allow other stuff on a case-by-case basis.
>
> If a player wants to use something not in your group of "allowed" books,
> get online.
>
> Go to your favorite search engine.
>
> Do a web search using keywords "Character" "Optimization" "XXX", where
> "XXX" is the feat/PrC/whatever in question.
>
> If it is mentioned more than two or three times on the WotC Character
> Optimization boards, it is right out.
>
> This handily eliminates such over-the-top nonsense as "Nymph's Kiss",
> "Vow of Poverty", and "Item Familiar".
>

You could just go with Hong's rule of thumb, and ban everything.

Actually I like your idea, I just banned the entire Book of Exaulted
Deeds because of the horror stories I'd heard. I've allowed the
complete books, but I'm a bit worried about it. I'd thought of banning
everything, and just using the core books.

I'd actually find such a list extremely useful since I like to give
players as many options as possible, but don't want to worry about all
the abuses. I'm sure a bunch of other DMs would as well, if anyone
feels up to it we could start the "net list of banned 3.5 feats & PRCs"
or some such. Other things to consider banning would be items (like
mercureal swords), spells (dominate monster comes to mind), and
domains.

One could start with that, then go on to fixes that the majority can
agree on if people are interested enough. I'm pretty exited about
this idea!

- Justisaur
justisaur.rpgpit.com
Anonymous
June 24, 2005 4:16:22 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Werebat wrote:
> laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu wrote:
> >
> > Werebat wrote:
> >
> >>Here's what you do as DM:
> >>
> >>Pick a conservative group of books from which all options will be
> >>allowed... For example, PHB, DMG, and the four "Complete" books.
> >>
> >>Allow other stuff on a case-by-case basis.
> >>
> >>If a player wants to use something not in your group of "allowed" books,
> >>get online.
> >>
> >>Go to your favorite search engine.
> >>
> >>Do a web search using keywords "Character" "Optimization" "XXX", where
> >>"XXX" is the feat/PrC/whatever in question.
> >>
> >>If it is mentioned more than two or three times on the WotC Character
> >>Optimization boards, it is right out.
> >>
> >>This handily eliminates such over-the-top nonsense as "Nymph's Kiss",
> >>"Vow of Poverty", and "Item Familiar".
> >
> >
> > I actually do this (except I don't really have to search Google, since
> > I read the CO board regularly).
> >
> > The method needs more finesse, though; there are plenty of character
> > options that are perfectly well balanced (and very interesting), except
> > for a weird rules abuse or two which puts them over the top. Sublime
> > Chord is a perfect example (and you'll find it all over the CO board).
> > In these cases, it's much better to ban the specific rules abuse, not
> > the whole option.
>
> Unfortunately, you are right.
>
> The problem is that some players, once they realize this, will try to
> finagle the same way they do when they don't have a rule like this
> staring them in the face.
>
> "Well it's really not any more powerful than Power Attack, when you
> think about it..."
>
> Bah.
>
> It's best to just stick with the hard and fast rule. The loss of
> Sublime Chord, etc. is a little sad, but much less annoying than opening
> up a can of worms for the finagling player to do his cat's cradle BS with.
>
> If you're fortunate enough to not have such a player, being lenient is
> more of an option. If you do have such a player, though, they'll sense
> your "weakness" and pounce.

I've got a player who would do just this. And if you don't ban the
items, and you don't have a player who would do this, you never know if
you might pick up a player who would. best to be fair and just get it
out of the way to begin with.

>
> Just out of curiosity -- what's your take on the Radiant Servant of Pelor?
>

Which book is this from?

> On Raptorian clerics with racial substitution levels?

And this?

- Justisaur
Anonymous
June 24, 2005 6:05:49 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Sheldon England wrote:
> Justisaur wrote:
> >
> > You could just go with Hong's rule of thumb, and ban everything.
> >
> > Actually I like your idea, I just banned the entire Book of Exaulted
> > Deeds because of the horror stories I'd heard. I've allowed the
> > complete books, but I'm a bit worried about it. I'd thought of banning
> > everything, and just using the core books.
>
> Our GM allows anything from the four key books by default. He also uses
> a certificate system in which, at the end of each session, he hands out
> a yellow "good roleplaying" cert. as applicable (usually just one per
> session per group), the purple "whoops, you were right, I was wrong"
> cert. (which is rare because the bastard knows the rules inside and out
> <g>) and every player gets one blue "+1 to any roll" cert. (which can be
> stacked).
>
> There are others but the relevant one to this post is the yellow one. It
> allows a player to choose any feat, PrC, or spell from any non-core book
> "with the GM's approval." No yellow cert, no funky PrC.
>
> It keeps us players with our feet mainly on the ground but also allows
> great roleplayers the opportunity to improve/train beyond the core rules
> and do something different. BTW, the GM doesn't decide who gets the
> yellow cert. -- the players do.
>

This wouldn't work in my game. Unfortunately the serial rules rapist
I've got is also an excelent RPer. He just loves the spotlight, and I
have to keep a close eye on him so the other players don't feel he's
hogging it too much. He's playing a relatively tame (in comparison to
his usual characters) spiked chain trip based fighter this game, and
even with that some of the other players have been complaining his
character is overpowered.

- Justisaur
Anonymous
June 24, 2005 6:12:36 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Werebat wrote:
> Justisaur wrote:
>
> >
> > Werebat wrote:
> >
> >>laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu wrote:
> >>
> >>>Werebat wrote:
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>>Here's what you do as DM:
> >>>>
> >>>>Pick a conservative group of books from which all options will be
> >>>>allowed... For example, PHB, DMG, and the four "Complete" books.
> >>>>
> >>>>Allow other stuff on a case-by-case basis.
> >>>>
> >>>>If a player wants to use something not in your group of "allowed" books,
> >>>>get online.
> >>>>
> >>>>Go to your favorite search engine.
> >>>>
> >>>>Do a web search using keywords "Character" "Optimization" "XXX", where
> >>>>"XXX" is the feat/PrC/whatever in question.
> >>>>
> >>>>If it is mentioned more than two or three times on the WotC Character
> >>>>Optimization boards, it is right out.
> >>>>
> >>>>This handily eliminates such over-the-top nonsense as "Nymph's Kiss",
> >>>>"Vow of Poverty", and "Item Familiar".
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>I actually do this (except I don't really have to search Google, since
> >>>I read the CO board regularly).
> >>>
> >>>The method needs more finesse, though; there are plenty of character
> >>>options that are perfectly well balanced (and very interesting), except
> >>>for a weird rules abuse or two which puts them over the top. Sublime
> >>>Chord is a perfect example (and you'll find it all over the CO board).
> >>>In these cases, it's much better to ban the specific rules abuse, not
> >>>the whole option.
> >>
> >>Unfortunately, you are right.
> >>
> >>The problem is that some players, once they realize this, will try to
> >>finagle the same way they do when they don't have a rule like this
> >>staring them in the face.
> >>
> >>"Well it's really not any more powerful than Power Attack, when you
> >>think about it..."
> >>
> >>Bah.
> >>
> >>It's best to just stick with the hard and fast rule. The loss of
> >>Sublime Chord, etc. is a little sad, but much less annoying than opening
> >>up a can of worms for the finagling player to do his cat's cradle BS with.
> >>
> >>If you're fortunate enough to not have such a player, being lenient is
> >>more of an option. If you do have such a player, though, they'll sense
> >>your "weakness" and pounce.
> >
> >
> > I've got a player who would do just this. And if you don't ban the
> > items, and you don't have a player who would do this, you never know if
> > you might pick up a player who would. best to be fair and just get it
> > out of the way to begin with.
> >
> >
> >>Just out of curiosity -- what's your take on the Radiant Servant of Pelor?
> >
> > Which book is this from?
>
> Complete Arcane, which is one reason why it is problematic -- it is
> close to "core".
>

I hardly consider them close to core, they are option books much like
the old 2e ones, whch were often banned in many DM's campains.

>
> >>On Raptorian clerics with racial substitution levels?
> >
> > And this?
>
> Races of the Wild, I think. I don't have the book, one of my players
> wants to have one for a cohort.

Don't have access to that one.

One of the problems is the options are starting to get a bit out of
hand like the old 2e days... So many books... So little time for a DM.

Maybe I'll go back to my old 2e rule. I have to have the book, if I
don't you can buy it for me and get a freebee out of it.

- Justisaur
Anonymous
June 24, 2005 7:41:15 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu wrote:

>
> Werebat wrote:
>
>>laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu wrote:
>>
>>>Werebat wrote:
>>>
>>>
>>>>Here's what you do as DM:
>>>>
>>>>Pick a conservative group of books from which all options will be
>>>>allowed... For example, PHB, DMG, and the four "Complete" books.
>>>>
>>>>Allow other stuff on a case-by-case basis.
>>>>
>>>>If a player wants to use something not in your group of "allowed" books,
>>>>get online.
>>>>
>>>>Go to your favorite search engine.
>>>>
>>>>Do a web search using keywords "Character" "Optimization" "XXX", where
>>>>"XXX" is the feat/PrC/whatever in question.
>>>>
>>>>If it is mentioned more than two or three times on the WotC Character
>>>>Optimization boards, it is right out.
>>>>
>>>>This handily eliminates such over-the-top nonsense as "Nymph's Kiss",
>>>>"Vow of Poverty", and "Item Familiar".
>>>
>>>
>>>I actually do this (except I don't really have to search Google, since
>>>I read the CO board regularly).
>>>
>>>The method needs more finesse, though; there are plenty of character
>>>options that are perfectly well balanced (and very interesting), except
>>>for a weird rules abuse or two which puts them over the top. Sublime
>>>Chord is a perfect example (and you'll find it all over the CO board).
>>>In these cases, it's much better to ban the specific rules abuse, not
>>>the whole option.
>>
>>Unfortunately, you are right.
>>
>>The problem is that some players, once they realize this, will try to
>>finagle the same way they do when they don't have a rule like this
>>staring them in the face.
>>
>>"Well it's really not any more powerful than Power Attack, when you
>>think about it..."
>>
>>Bah.
>>
>>It's best to just stick with the hard and fast rule. The loss of
>>Sublime Chord, etc. is a little sad, but much less annoying than opening
>>up a can of worms for the finagling player to do his cat's cradle BS with.
>>
>>If you're fortunate enough to not have such a player, being lenient is
>>more of an option. If you do have such a player, though, they'll sense
>>your "weakness" and pounce.
>
>
> I know the feeling. I _do_ have such a player. To avoid problems, I
> always tell my players to tell me their character advancement plans in
> advance, especially if they're planning on some funky combo or obscure
> feat. That way, they won't be unpleasantly surprised.

This is a good idea, and one I always mean to enforce but never do. I
should bring it up next session.

Trouble is, only 2-3 of the players (myself included) actually bother to
graph out character advancement in advance like that. The others would
find it to be a chore.

*Prediction Mode On*

So I'd tell them they didn't HAVE to do it, but if they didn't, I
wouldn't be responsible if/when they had some pivotal feat or PrC nerfed
on them. And when it inevitably happened, they'd get pissed anyway.

*Prediction Mode Off*

Heh. Yeah, that's pretty much how it'd go.


>>Just out of curiosity -- what's your take on the Radiant Servant of Pelor?
>
>
> I'll answer this tonight, when I have access to my books.

Sure -- I'm always curious what people think. I myself am in a bit of a
funny situation with it, as one of my players has just taken it for his
cohort. This player is the other local DM, and I have an interest in
playing a cleric of Pelor in the future (which would invariably be in
one of his future games). While I plan to focus him on Thaumaturge, I
recognize that I'd be a fool not to dip into RSP with him on the way, so
I'm leery about banning it unless it really needs to be banned. :^)

The two of us recently had to come to an "arrangement" about Web, as it
seemed overpowered in the hands of his wizard and I had a fighter/rogue
with UMD maxed out in his game. As written, Web is a spell where you
are generally screwed even if you make your save, so my wand-armed
fighter/rogue would be nearly as much of a threat as his wizard in the
web department. We had sort of a MAD thing going on there and ended up
nerfing Web somewhat (DC 5+ to move through after breaking out, instead
of 10+).


>>On Kineticists with Energy Stun and Energy Missile?
>
>
> There are very few truly overpowered psionic powers. Energy Stun,
> Energy Missile, and Ego Whip are the three big ones (I'm still on the
> fence about Vigor).

LOL and the player IMC who gives me headaches with this sort of thing
was playing a Kineticist with guess which powers? ;^)

(Clarification -- he didn't have Ego Whip. He did have Vigor and Energy
Stun. I think he was planning on getting Energy Missile.)

In the end I toned down Energy Stun by using the common houserule of
dropping the nonstandard DC pump, and standardizing all of the energy
effects to fire's +1 damage per die (nerfing the electric stun). The
player got frustrated and quit the character to play a bard with Nymph's
Kiss, which I later looked at more closely when he wanted his cohort to
take Nymph's Kiss, too, and nerfed. :^/

I had also had to nerf the psicrystal "pet" of the Kineticist character
because it was too easy to use it as a scout that could die over and
over again and come back at no real cost after 24 hours. But that's
another story. And one I still don't completely understand.


> I'd nerf all three. They are far too powerful and versatile.
>
>
>>On Raptorian clerics with racial substitution levels?
>
>
> Again, I'll have to check my books. I've never had a Raptorian PC.

The clerical racial substitution levels for Raptorians in Races of the
Wild reminded me of the Radiant Servant of Pelor in that they almost
seemed designed to be "stealth cheese", because they were clearly more
powerful than the standard cleric levels at no real cost, but not
*extremely* so. They can summon air elementals at one spell level lower
than they should, for example, but don't really lose anything for the
privilege (maybe they drop to d6 hit dice -- heh, just like the RSP).

- Ron ^*^
Anonymous
June 24, 2005 7:48:24 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Justisaur wrote:

>
> Werebat wrote:
>
>>laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu wrote:
>>
>>>Werebat wrote:
>>>
>>>
>>>>Here's what you do as DM:
>>>>
>>>>Pick a conservative group of books from which all options will be
>>>>allowed... For example, PHB, DMG, and the four "Complete" books.
>>>>
>>>>Allow other stuff on a case-by-case basis.
>>>>
>>>>If a player wants to use something not in your group of "allowed" books,
>>>>get online.
>>>>
>>>>Go to your favorite search engine.
>>>>
>>>>Do a web search using keywords "Character" "Optimization" "XXX", where
>>>>"XXX" is the feat/PrC/whatever in question.
>>>>
>>>>If it is mentioned more than two or three times on the WotC Character
>>>>Optimization boards, it is right out.
>>>>
>>>>This handily eliminates such over-the-top nonsense as "Nymph's Kiss",
>>>>"Vow of Poverty", and "Item Familiar".
>>>
>>>
>>>I actually do this (except I don't really have to search Google, since
>>>I read the CO board regularly).
>>>
>>>The method needs more finesse, though; there are plenty of character
>>>options that are perfectly well balanced (and very interesting), except
>>>for a weird rules abuse or two which puts them over the top. Sublime
>>>Chord is a perfect example (and you'll find it all over the CO board).
>>>In these cases, it's much better to ban the specific rules abuse, not
>>>the whole option.
>>
>>Unfortunately, you are right.
>>
>>The problem is that some players, once they realize this, will try to
>>finagle the same way they do when they don't have a rule like this
>>staring them in the face.
>>
>>"Well it's really not any more powerful than Power Attack, when you
>>think about it..."
>>
>>Bah.
>>
>>It's best to just stick with the hard and fast rule. The loss of
>>Sublime Chord, etc. is a little sad, but much less annoying than opening
>>up a can of worms for the finagling player to do his cat's cradle BS with.
>>
>>If you're fortunate enough to not have such a player, being lenient is
>>more of an option. If you do have such a player, though, they'll sense
>>your "weakness" and pounce.
>
>
> I've got a player who would do just this. And if you don't ban the
> items, and you don't have a player who would do this, you never know if
> you might pick up a player who would. best to be fair and just get it
> out of the way to begin with.
>
>
>>Just out of curiosity -- what's your take on the Radiant Servant of Pelor?
>>
>
>
> Which book is this from?

Complete Arcane, which is one reason why it is problematic -- it is
close to "core".


>>On Raptorian clerics with racial substitution levels?
>
>
> And this?

Races of the Wild, I think. I don't have the book, one of my players
wants to have one for a cohort.

- Ron ^*^
Anonymous
June 24, 2005 10:42:22 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Justisaur wrote:

>
> Sheldon England wrote:
>
>>Justisaur wrote:
>>
>>>You could just go with Hong's rule of thumb, and ban everything.
>>>
>>>Actually I like your idea, I just banned the entire Book of Exaulted
>>>Deeds because of the horror stories I'd heard. I've allowed the
>>>complete books, but I'm a bit worried about it. I'd thought of banning
>>>everything, and just using the core books.
>>
>>Our GM allows anything from the four key books by default. He also uses
>>a certificate system in which, at the end of each session, he hands out
>>a yellow "good roleplaying" cert. as applicable (usually just one per
>>session per group), the purple "whoops, you were right, I was wrong"
>>cert. (which is rare because the bastard knows the rules inside and out
>><g>) and every player gets one blue "+1 to any roll" cert. (which can be
>>stacked).
>>
>>There are others but the relevant one to this post is the yellow one. It
>>allows a player to choose any feat, PrC, or spell from any non-core book
>>"with the GM's approval." No yellow cert, no funky PrC.
>>
>>It keeps us players with our feet mainly on the ground but also allows
>>great roleplayers the opportunity to improve/train beyond the core rules
>>and do something different. BTW, the GM doesn't decide who gets the
>>yellow cert. -- the players do.
>>
>
>
> This wouldn't work in my game. Unfortunately the serial rules rapist
> I've got is also an excelent RPer. He just loves the spotlight, and I
> have to keep a close eye on him so the other players don't feel he's
> hogging it too much. He's playing a relatively tame (in comparison to
> his usual characters) spiked chain trip based fighter this game, and
> even with that some of the other players have been complaining his
> character is overpowered.

LOL in the game I play in it would become a metagame fest with people
making deals -- "I really need the yellow slip this level, if you vote
for me I'll vote for you next level when YOU need it..."

:^)

- Ron ^*^
Anonymous
June 25, 2005 12:23:49 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Justisaur wrote:
>
> You could just go with Hong's rule of thumb, and ban everything.
>
> Actually I like your idea, I just banned the entire Book of Exaulted
> Deeds because of the horror stories I'd heard. I've allowed the
> complete books, but I'm a bit worried about it. I'd thought of banning
> everything, and just using the core books.

Our GM allows anything from the four key books by default. He also uses
a certificate system in which, at the end of each session, he hands out
a yellow "good roleplaying" cert. as applicable (usually just one per
session per group), the purple "whoops, you were right, I was wrong"
cert. (which is rare because the bastard knows the rules inside and out
<g>) and every player gets one blue "+1 to any roll" cert. (which can be
stacked).

There are others but the relevant one to this post is the yellow one. It
allows a player to choose any feat, PrC, or spell from any non-core book
"with the GM's approval." No yellow cert, no funky PrC.

It keeps us players with our feet mainly on the ground but also allows
great roleplayers the opportunity to improve/train beyond the core rules
and do something different. BTW, the GM doesn't decide who gets the
yellow cert. -- the players do.

FWIW.


- Sheldon
Anonymous
June 25, 2005 12:32:11 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Sheldon England wrote:
>
> There are others but the relevant one to this post is the yellow one. It
> allows a player to choose any feat, PrC, or spell from any non-core book
> "with the GM's approval." No yellow cert, no funky PrC.

Er ... specifically, one yellow cert. for a spell, two for a feat, three
for a PrC. It's not easy.


- Sheldon
Anonymous
June 25, 2005 5:45:17 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Werebat wrote:
> Just out of curiosity -- what's your take on the Radiant Servant of Pelor?

Yep, clearly overpowered, even when there are no undead to consider.

Think of it this way. The only advantage a cleric has over a RSoP is an
average of +1 HP per level. If you allow Improved Toughness from CW
(not a feat I'm terribly fond of, but it passes the "would anyone take
it" and "would everyone take it" tests), then clearly, the cleric's
advantage is not worth even a single feat.

Meanwhile, the RsoP's extra domain _alone_ is easily worth more than a
feat. The will save aura is also worth more than a feat. And the
improved healing, better light spells, etc is just gravy.

> On Raptorian clerics with racial substitution levels?

Tough to evaluate. As you said, it's pretty subtle. Overall, yes, I
think it's slightly overpowered. But I'd still allow it, because it's
not _clearly_ broken, and because it's stylish enough for me to go
along with it.

Laszlo
Anonymous
June 25, 2005 11:52:50 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Werebat wrote:
> laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu wrote:
>
> > Werebat wrote:
> >
> >>Just out of curiosity -- what's your take on the Radiant Servant of Pelor?
> >
> > Yep, clearly overpowered, even when there are no undead to consider.
> >
> > Think of it this way. The only advantage a cleric has over a RSoP is an
> > average of +1 HP per level. If you allow Improved Toughness from CW
> > (not a feat I'm terribly fond of, but it passes the "would anyone take
> > it" and "would everyone take it" tests), then clearly, the cleric's
> > advantage is not worth even a single feat.
>
> Well, it is worth exactly a single feat.

Nope. Improved Toughness gives +20 HP over 20 levels; RsoP loses only
10 HP over 20 levels.

> > Meanwhile, the RsoP's extra domain _alone_ is easily worth more than a
> > feat. The will save aura is also worth more than a feat. And the
> > improved healing, better light spells, etc is just gravy.
>
> I hadn't thought of the extra domain or will save aura. Yes, those are
> very handy. Especially since one of the arguments people use about the
> RSP being "balanced" is that to use all of its abilities you are
> restricted to taking the Sun and Healing domains. Obviously, if you get
> an extra domain, that restriction isn't much of a restriction (not that
> I feel those kinds of "restrictions" ever work as counterbalances
> anyway... "Yes, I get +20 to hit with every attack, but in order to get
> that ability I *have* to be a deep gnome Bard with Combat Reflexes,
> Quick Draw, and one level of Ranger!").

I agree, to a degree. Restrictions can be useful for balancing if
they're normally suboptimal choices.

For example, Mystic Theurge levels are clearly superior to, say,
sorcerer levels; the reason the PrC is weak is because of its
restriction, which involves a suboptimal class combo.

In fact, one of the most important skills for a true munchkin (that is,
character optimizer) is finding loopholes that allow you to take
powerful PrC levels while finding a way around their restrictions (True
Necromancer, I'd like you to meet my good friend Precocious
Apprentice).

> >>On Raptorian clerics with racial substitution levels?
> >
> > Tough to evaluate. As you said, it's pretty subtle. Overall, yes, I
> > think it's slightly overpowered. But I'd still allow it, because it's
> > not _clearly_ broken, and because it's stylish enough for me to go
> > along with it.
>
> I'm allowing it for now, but it bugs me because it is clearly more
> powerful than the normal cleric levels.

Well, not _clearly_. Besides the slight HP hit (2 points for the level
1 substitution level, and 1 each for the other two), he has to give up
somewhat relevant abilities. There aren't many "Earth" spells, but
there are some very useful ones (Meld Into Stone is great). Gutting
Planar Ally also hurts; there's much better stuff you can summon with
it than mere air elementals.

I agree that they're more powerful, and I'd take them in a heartbeat as
a player, but I don't see them as being any worse than, say, the
Loremaster PrC.

Laszlo
Anonymous
June 25, 2005 12:20:16 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Werebat wrote:
> The trouble with cleric PrCs, I think, is that the cleric doesn't have a
> heck of a lot in the way of special abilities that you can take from him
> in order to "pay" for the special abilities of the PrC. Wizards have
> their bonus feats and familiar advancement, for example. Clerics have
> turn undead advancement, and... Umm... Well, that's about it.

Right. Sorcerers are even worse: their familiars are the only thing
they can _possibly_ give up (you can't get any lower than d4 HP, 2
skill points, bad BAB, and a single good save), which is why Sorcerers
will generally run, not walk, to the nearest PrC as soon as possible.

> RSP grants turn undead advancement, the the RSP doesn't even lose that.
>
> About the only other thing you can take from the cleric class is
> spellcaster levels.

Well, they could fall to poor BAB. This is what the Cloistered Cleric
variant uses to balance its bonuses. Might be worth considering for the
RsoP, perhaps.

> So, how about it? How many spellcaster levels would the RSP need to
> lose in order to be "balanced"?

One is plenty.

> When would he have to lose them?

Level 1. But certainly no later than level 3.

> Would players still choose to play an RSP?

Maybe. Probably not. Losing a caster level hurts, bad. And when we get
right down to it, none of the RsoP's bennies have the "wow" factor
needed to overcome the loss of a caster level.

I'm thinking that dropping their BAB to poor might be enough. None of
the RsoP's abilities are combat-focused, and this change would template
the RsoP as a true believer who walks in a transcendent state of faith
and bliss, receiving more powerful boons from Pelor while losing out on
earthly things like combat effectiveness.

> Say he lost a spellcasting level at 1st level in the class. Would it be
> balanced then? Would anyone take it?

I'd say it would be balanced on paper, but nobody would take it, for
psychological reasons. When taking a PrC, most players tend to focus on
what they lose out on. Losing a caster level right up front is real
bad, and they won't have anything hugely flashy to look forward to in
latter levels.

Losing BAB might be better, because it's a much more "gradual" loss,
making it somewhat more acceptable.

YMMV, of course.

Laszlo
Anonymous
June 25, 2005 12:41:48 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Werebat wrote:
> laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu wrote:
> > Werebat wrote:
>
> > Maybe. Probably not. Losing a caster level hurts, bad. And when we get
> > right down to it, none of the RsoP's bennies have the "wow" factor
> > needed to overcome the loss of a caster level.
> >
> > I'm thinking that dropping their BAB to poor might be enough. None of
> > the RsoP's abilities are combat-focused
>
> Bzzt. They get martial weapon proficiency, for some unknown reason. So
> they can use longbows and greatswords.

Huh. Weird. Like the PrC wasn't powerful enough.

> I think they gave them martial weapon proficiency so players who want to
> get the PrC past their DMs can "volunteer" to "give up" martial weapon
> proficiency to "tone the PrC down", which is something they weren't
> going to use anyway. :^)

Wha? MWP for cleric is _awesome_. For certain builds, at least. "Combat
clerics" are very viable, and not having to spend a feat on MWP for a
weapon is a great boon.

> > Losing BAB might be better, because it's a much more "gradual" loss,
> > making it somewhat more acceptable.
>
> Thematically I agree with you, especially if you also drop martial
> weapon proficiency.

Yeah, drop it. The PrC has plenty to offer without it.

Laszlo
Anonymous
June 25, 2005 1:19:44 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Werebat wrote:
> Justisaur wrote:
>
> >>Just out of curiosity -- what's your take on the Radiant Servant of Pelor?
> >
> > Which book is this from?
>
> Complete Arcane, which is one reason why it is problematic -- it is
> close to "core".

Just a quick correction: it's Complete Divine, not Complete Arcane.

Laszlo
Anonymous
June 25, 2005 1:37:50 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Werebat wrote:
> laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu wrote:
> >
> >>>Losing BAB might be better, because it's a much more "gradual" loss,
> >>>making it somewhat more acceptable.
> >>
> >>Thematically I agree with you, especially if you also drop martial
> >>weapon proficiency.
> >
> > Yeah, drop it. The PrC has plenty to offer without it.
>
> So, resolved: drop martial weapon proficiency, lower BAB to wizard
> levels. Do you think those changes basically balance the PrC? Because
> I think one other thing I could do is drop the Fort saves to Poor
> instead of Good, since what we're doing is making it less of a martial
> class.

I don't think that's necessary. One of the main strengths of a cleric
is their ability to rival a primary melee build when necessary, and
otherwise act as a primary caster.

With low BAB and d6 HP, the RSoP's melee role is effectively neutered.
Clerics as pure casters are weak. The RSoP's extra abilities make up
for this, making the PrC a great addition to any party in the
buffer/healer/undead killer roles. I don't foresee any balance
problems.

Laszlo
Anonymous
June 25, 2005 2:31:00 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu wrote:

> Werebat wrote:
>
>>Just out of curiosity -- what's your take on the Radiant Servant of Pelor?
>
>
> Yep, clearly overpowered, even when there are no undead to consider.
>
> Think of it this way. The only advantage a cleric has over a RSoP is an
> average of +1 HP per level. If you allow Improved Toughness from CW
> (not a feat I'm terribly fond of, but it passes the "would anyone take
> it" and "would everyone take it" tests), then clearly, the cleric's
> advantage is not worth even a single feat.

Well, it is worth exactly a single feat.


> Meanwhile, the RsoP's extra domain _alone_ is easily worth more than a
> feat. The will save aura is also worth more than a feat. And the
> improved healing, better light spells, etc is just gravy.

I hadn't thought of the extra domain or will save aura. Yes, those are
very handy. Especially since one of the arguments people use about the
RSP being "balanced" is that to use all of its abilities you are
restricted to taking the Sun and Healing domains. Obviously, if you get
an extra domain, that restriction isn't much of a restriction (not that
I feel those kinds of "restrictions" ever work as counterbalances
anyway... "Yes, I get +20 to hit with every attack, but in order to get
that ability I *have* to be a deep gnome Bard with Combat Reflexes,
Quick Draw, and one level of Ranger!").


>>On Raptorian clerics with racial substitution levels?
>
>
> Tough to evaluate. As you said, it's pretty subtle. Overall, yes, I
> think it's slightly overpowered. But I'd still allow it, because it's
> not _clearly_ broken, and because it's stylish enough for me to go
> along with it.

I'm allowing it for now, but it bugs me because it is clearly more
powerful than the normal cleric levels.

The RSP bugs me even more now. I'm going to have to go over that one
with a fine toothed comb.

- Ron ^*^
Anonymous
June 25, 2005 3:00:43 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu wrote:
>
> Werebat wrote:
>
>>laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu wrote:
>>
>>
>>>Werebat wrote:
>>>
>>>
>>>>Just out of curiosity -- what's your take on the Radiant Servant of Pelor?
>>>
>>>Yep, clearly overpowered, even when there are no undead to consider.
>>>
>>>Think of it this way. The only advantage a cleric has over a RSoP is an
>>>average of +1 HP per level. If you allow Improved Toughness from CW
>>>(not a feat I'm terribly fond of, but it passes the "would anyone take
>>>it" and "would everyone take it" tests), then clearly, the cleric's
>>>advantage is not worth even a single feat.
>>
>>Well, it is worth exactly a single feat.
>
>
> Nope. Improved Toughness gives +20 HP over 20 levels; RsoP loses only
> 10 HP over 20 levels.

The trouble with cleric PrCs, I think, is that the cleric doesn't have a
heck of a lot in the way of special abilities that you can take from him
in order to "pay" for the special abilities of the PrC. Wizards have
their bonus feats and familiar advancement, for example. Clerics have
turn undead advancement, and... Umm... Well, that's about it.

RSP grants turn undead advancement, the the RSP doesn't even lose that.

About the only other thing you can take from the cleric class is
spellcaster levels.

So, how about it? How many spellcaster levels would the RSP need to
lose in order to be "balanced"? Whe would he have to lose them? Would
players still choose to play an RSP?

Say he lost a spellcasting level at 1st level in the class. Would it be
balanced then? Would anyone take it?

- Ron ^*^
Anonymous
June 25, 2005 3:31:29 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu wrote:
> Werebat wrote:

>>So, how about it? How many spellcaster levels would the RSP need to
>>lose in order to be "balanced"?
>
>
> One is plenty.
>
>
>>When would he have to lose them?
>
>
> Level 1. But certainly no later than level 3.
>
>
>>Would players still choose to play an RSP?
>
>
> Maybe. Probably not. Losing a caster level hurts, bad. And when we get
> right down to it, none of the RsoP's bennies have the "wow" factor
> needed to overcome the loss of a caster level.
>
> I'm thinking that dropping their BAB to poor might be enough. None of
> the RsoP's abilities are combat-focused

Bzzt. They get martial weapon proficiency, for some unknown reason. So
they can use longbows and greatswords.

I think they gave them martial weapon proficiency so players who want to
get the PrC past their DMs can "volunteer" to "give up" martial weapon
proficiency to "tone the PrC down", which is something they weren't
going to use anyway. :^)


> and this change would template
> the RsoP as a true believer who walks in a transcendent state of faith
> and bliss, receiving more powerful boons from Pelor while losing out on
> earthly things like combat effectiveness.

This makes some degree of sense, and is in keeping with the lower hit
points -- but not the martial weapon proficiency.


>>Say he lost a spellcasting level at 1st level in the class. Would it be
>>balanced then? Would anyone take it?
>
>
> I'd say it would be balanced on paper, but nobody would take it, for
> psychological reasons. When taking a PrC, most players tend to focus on
> what they lose out on. Losing a caster level right up front is real
> bad, and they won't have anything hugely flashy to look forward to in
> latter levels.

I think 3rd level would be the time to lose a spellcaster level, right
when they gain +2 to Will saves and offer the same to anyone standing
near them.


> Losing BAB might be better, because it's a much more "gradual" loss,
> making it somewhat more acceptable.

Thematically I agree with you, especially if you also drop martial
weapon proficiency.

- Ron ^*^
Anonymous
June 25, 2005 4:29:43 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu wrote:
>
> Werebat wrote:

>>I think they gave them martial weapon proficiency so players who want to
>>get the PrC past their DMs can "volunteer" to "give up" martial weapon
>>proficiency to "tone the PrC down", which is something they weren't
>>going to use anyway. :^)
>
>
> Wha? MWP for cleric is _awesome_. For certain builds, at least. "Combat
> clerics" are very viable, and not having to spend a feat on MWP for a
> weapon is a great boon.

I was going to point out the d6 hit points, but I just realized a
powergamer could cherry pick the class for this ability and then switch
back to cleric levels. Damn.

You're right, that *IS* a powerful ability in the right build.


>>>Losing BAB might be better, because it's a much more "gradual" loss,
>>>making it somewhat more acceptable.
>>
>>Thematically I agree with you, especially if you also drop martial
>>weapon proficiency.
>
>
> Yeah, drop it. The PrC has plenty to offer without it.

So, resolved: drop martial weapon proficiency, lower BAB to wizard
levels. Do you think those changes basically balance the PrC? Because
I think one other thing I could do is drop the Fort saves to Poor
instead of Good, since what we're doing is making it less of a martial
class.

- Ron ^*^
Anonymous
June 25, 2005 4:30:08 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu wrote:

> Werebat wrote:
>
>>Justisaur wrote:
>>
>>
>>>>Just out of curiosity -- what's your take on the Radiant Servant of Pelor?
>>>
>>>Which book is this from?
>>
>>Complete Arcane, which is one reason why it is problematic -- it is
>>close to "core".
>
>
> Just a quick correction: it's Complete Divine, not Complete Arcane.

Eh, sorry -- silly mistake on my part.

- Ron ^*^
Anonymous
June 25, 2005 5:35:49 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu wrote:
>
> Werebat wrote:
>
>>laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu wrote:
>>
>>>>>Losing BAB might be better, because it's a much more "gradual" loss,
>>>>>making it somewhat more acceptable.
>>>>
>>>>Thematically I agree with you, especially if you also drop martial
>>>>weapon proficiency.
>>>
>>>Yeah, drop it. The PrC has plenty to offer without it.
>>
>>So, resolved: drop martial weapon proficiency, lower BAB to wizard
>>levels. Do you think those changes basically balance the PrC? Because
>>I think one other thing I could do is drop the Fort saves to Poor
>>instead of Good, since what we're doing is making it less of a martial
>>class.
>
>
> I don't think that's necessary. One of the main strengths of a cleric
> is their ability to rival a primary melee build when necessary, and
> otherwise act as a primary caster.
>
> With low BAB and d6 HP, the RSoP's melee role is effectively neutered.
> Clerics as pure casters are weak. The RSoP's extra abilities make up
> for this, making the PrC a great addition to any party in the
> buffer/healer/undead killer roles. I don't foresee any balance
> problems.

Cool. Works for me, both as a DM and a player who might want to pick up
the PrC someday.

- Ron ^*^
Anonymous
June 26, 2005 1:50:51 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

All of this wouldn't be a problem if you'd just have mature players and
DMs who don't think players with characters who can do "nifty" stuff
are inherently a bad thing. Any player doing one or two level dips in
Prestige Classes is not caring about the prestige classes but rather
the abilities. That's an immature player. However, someone else
playing a bard then going into Subline Chord all the way just wants to
play a Sumbline Chord. If a cleric Pelor sees travels the world and
notices a lot of undead about, it's logical sense for him to want to be
a radiant Servant. If the players, not just with radiant Servant, are
coming up with lots of interesting ways to deal with undead, it's the
DM's fault because it is the DM who's constantly sending undead at
them. It's only natural the players are going to come up with tactics
to deal with them.

Gerald Katz
Anonymous
June 26, 2005 3:40:33 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

In article <1119717469.914136.160620@g43g2000cwa.googlegroups.com>,
laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu says...

> > So, resolved: drop martial weapon proficiency, lower BAB to wizard
> > levels. Do you think those changes basically balance the PrC? Because
> > I think one other thing I could do is drop the Fort saves to Poor
> > instead of Good, since what we're doing is making it less of a martial
> > class.
>
> I don't think that's necessary. One of the main strengths of a cleric
> is their ability to rival a primary melee build when necessary, and
> otherwise act as a primary caster.
>
> With low BAB and d6 HP, the RSoP's melee role is effectively neutered.

Is it? IME, a cleric who wants to melee will be casting divine power
anyway. Of course, the d6 HD are still there, and the RSoP is weaker on
those less important fights where he doesn't cast divine power, but if
you think RSoP is clearly overpowered with medium BAB (I agree), I'm not
sure just dropping it to weak BAB is enough to fix it.


--
Jasin Zujovic
jzujovic@inet.hr
Anonymous
June 26, 2005 6:39:11 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Jasin Zujovic wrote:
> In article <1119717469.914136.160620@g43g2000cwa.googlegroups.com>,
> laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu says...
>
> > > So, resolved: drop martial weapon proficiency, lower BAB to wizard
> > > levels. Do you think those changes basically balance the PrC? Because
> > > I think one other thing I could do is drop the Fort saves to Poor
> > > instead of Good, since what we're doing is making it less of a martial
> > > class.
> >
> > I don't think that's necessary. One of the main strengths of a cleric
> > is their ability to rival a primary melee build when necessary, and
> > otherwise act as a primary caster.
> >
> > With low BAB and d6 HP, the RSoP's melee role is effectively neutered.
>
> Is it? IME, a cleric who wants to melee will be casting divine power
> anyway. Of course, the d6 HD are still there, and the RSoP is weaker on
> those less important fights where he doesn't cast divine power, but if
> you think RSoP is clearly overpowered with medium BAB (I agree), I'm not
> sure just dropping it to weak BAB is enough to fix it.

Good point. I guess I'd have to see a RSoP in action. A normal cleric
can still hold his own in combat (to some degree) if Divine Power wears
off, or is dispelled, though. I think that does make a difference.

Also, like you said, Divine Power won't be up for all (or even most)
encounters. And for the times when it _will_ be up, the RsoP's other
abilities won't really come into play.

Laszlo
Anonymous
June 26, 2005 7:07:10 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Benjamin Adams wrote:
> Werebat <ranpoirier@cox.net> wrote in
> news:xkeve.141237$sy6.16019@lakeread04:
>
> > So, how about it? How many spellcaster levels would the RSP need to
> > lose in order to be "balanced"? Whe would he have to lose them?
> > Would players still choose to play an RSP?
> >
> > Say he lost a spellcasting level at 1st level in the class. Would it
> > be balanced then? Would anyone take it?
>
> The Living Planar campaign

Is that like Living Grayhawk? I always wanted to get involved in that,
but never quite got around to it.

> often uses this mechanism (giving
> spellcasting PrCs 9 caster levels out of 10) to balance things.
> They call this "instabalance". Interestingly, they use this to
> boost weak classes who don't get enough caster levels, in addition
> to knocking down high-powered PrCs.

Meh. This is a good fix in some cases, and not so good in others.

<snip>
>
> And these classes gain caster levels from instabalance:
> Spellsword (yes, this makes the Eldritch Knight redundant; this isn't
> a bug, it's a feature)

Well, it doesn't _totally_ make it redundant: the Eldritch Knight gains
a feat at level 1, while the Spellsword doesn't. :) 

Laszlo
Anonymous
June 26, 2005 7:39:27 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Justisaur wrote:
> You could just go with Hong's rule of thumb, and ban everything.
>
> Actually I like your idea, I just banned the entire Book of Exaulted
> Deeds because of the horror stories I'd heard. I've allowed the
> complete books, but I'm a bit worried about it. I'd thought of banning
> everything, and just using the core books.
>
> I'd actually find such a list extremely useful since I like to give
> players as many options as possible, but don't want to worry about all
> the abuses. I'm sure a bunch of other DMs would as well, if anyone
> feels up to it we could start the "net list of banned 3.5 feats & PRCs"
> or some such. Other things to consider banning would be items (like
> mercureal swords), spells (dominate monster comes to mind), and
> domains.
>
> One could start with that, then go on to fixes that the majority can
> agree on if people are interested enough. I'm pretty exited about
> this idea!

That's a great idea, for the reason that some GMs are at
severe risk of going into a paranoid "ban everything except
PHB/DMG"-mode. A somewhat authorative "white"-list, compiled
by some of the best rules lawyers of rec.games.frp.dnd, is
an excellent weapon in the hands of a player who wishes to
oppose a paranoid "ban everythin"-type GM.

As a secondary effort, once the pseudo-core supplements
(Completes, Miniatures Handbook - and which others?) have
been sorted through, would be a "white"-list of approved
ability swap-outs, e.g. a player giving up the Evasion
ability of his Rogue character in return for one or more
other boons - clearly specified.

--
Peter Knutsen
sagatafl.org
Anonymous
June 26, 2005 7:39:28 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

On Sun, 26 Jun 2005 03:39:27 +0200, "Peter Knutsen (usenet)"
<peter@sagatafl.invalid> wrote:


>That's a great idea, for the reason that some GMs are at
>severe risk of going into a paranoid "ban everything except
>PHB/DMG"-mode.

Well hell, it's a lot cheaper.
Anonymous
June 26, 2005 11:12:03 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Werebat <ranpoirier@cox.net> wrote in
news:xkeve.141237$sy6.16019@lakeread04:

> So, how about it? How many spellcaster levels would the RSP need to
> lose in order to be "balanced"? Whe would he have to lose them?
> Would players still choose to play an RSP?
>
> Say he lost a spellcasting level at 1st level in the class. Would it
> be balanced then? Would anyone take it?

The Living Planar campaign often uses this mechanism (giving
spellcasting PrCs 9 caster levels out of 10) to balance things.
They call this "instabalance". Interestingly, they use this to
boost weak classes who don't get enough caster levels, in addition
to knocking down high-powered PrCs.

This is the instabalance list for the latest version of Living Planar.
The following classes lose caster levels from instabalance:
Archmage
Incantrix
Mystic Theurge
Alienist
Contemplative
Radiant Servant of Pelor
Auspician
Heartwarder
Windwalker
Lion of Talisid
Fochlucan Lyrist
Arcane Heirophant
Jade Magistrate
Cerebromancer

And these classes gain caster levels from instabalance:
Spellsword (yes, this makes the Eldritch Knight redundant; this isn't
a bug, it's a feature)
Acolyte of the Skin
Blood Magus
Enlightened Fist
Master Transmogrifist (but Infinite Variety is banned and polymorph
works totally differently in LP)
Mindbender
Pale Master
Black Flame Zealot
Entropomancer
Hospitaler
Shining Blade of Heironeous
Void Disciple
Warpriest
Tamer of Beasts
Divine Agent
Ollam
Scar Enforcer

And the Fatespinner and Wayfarer Guide have their caster levels
rearranged, so that all levels except the first increase spellcasting.

Now, for some of these classes, instabalance may be too much or not
enough. However, one of the goals of LP is that the rules be simple.

-Ben Adams
Anonymous
June 26, 2005 1:52:59 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Hadsil wrote:
> All of this wouldn't be a problem if you'd just have mature players and
> DMs who don't think players with characters who can do "nifty" stuff
> are inherently a bad thing. Any player doing one or two level dips in
> Prestige Classes is not caring about the prestige classes but rather
> the abilities. That's an immature player. However, someone else
> playing a bard then going into Subline Chord all the way just wants to
> play a Sumbline Chord. If a cleric Pelor sees travels the world and
> notices a lot of undead about, it's logical sense for him to want to be
> a radiant Servant. If the players, not just with radiant Servant, are
> coming up with lots of interesting ways to deal with undead, it's the
> DM's fault because it is the DM who's constantly sending undead at
> them. It's only natural the players are going to come up with tactics
> to deal with them.
>

I don't think wanting to be the best at what you are is "immature".

- Justisaur
Anonymous
June 26, 2005 5:37:17 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Justisaur wrote:

>
> Hadsil wrote:
>
>>All of this wouldn't be a problem if you'd just have mature players and
>>DMs who don't think players with characters who can do "nifty" stuff
>>are inherently a bad thing. Any player doing one or two level dips in
>>Prestige Classes is not caring about the prestige classes but rather
>>the abilities. That's an immature player. However, someone else
>>playing a bard then going into Subline Chord all the way just wants to
>>play a Sumbline Chord. If a cleric Pelor sees travels the world and
>>notices a lot of undead about, it's logical sense for him to want to be
>>a radiant Servant. If the players, not just with radiant Servant, are
>>coming up with lots of interesting ways to deal with undead, it's the
>>DM's fault because it is the DM who's constantly sending undead at
>>them. It's only natural the players are going to come up with tactics
>>to deal with them.
>>
>
>
> I don't think wanting to be the best at what you are is "immature".

Me either.

My own character is something of a trip monkey, and has certainly been
min/maxed. He uses the spiked chain, took the Thug variant of fighter
for better skills (he has rogue levels as well), and has levels of
Exotic Weapons Master for Flurry of Strikes and Trip Attack. But even
with him, there are two or three build aspects that I urged my DM to ban
so I wouldn't feel obligated to take them, because I did feel they were
overpowered. For example, the old Expert Tactician feat, the Item
Familiar feat from UA, and UA's Perform: Weapons Drill. All of these
were great for my character but I felt them to be overpowered as
written. I proposed something more balanced for each one, and ended up
dropping Expert Tactician and Item Familiar from my build. Had I known
about Nymph's Kiss at the time, I would have asked the DM to alter or
ban it too because I'd be a fool not to take it if it were available,
and I wanted my other options to be equally attractive.

Krass (my chain fighter) is great at what he does, and what he does
includes tripping, sneak attacking, and "underworld" social skills such
as Gather Information, Knowledge: Local, Bluff, and Intimidate (as well
as a "toned down" version of Perform: Weapons Drill). I don't see him
as a munchkinfest, though. I could make a vanilla barbarian with Power
Attack, Cleave, and Great Cleave who would be as effective in combat as
Krass, if not more so.

- Ron ^*^
Anonymous
June 27, 2005 12:02:16 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Justisaur wrote:
> Hadsil wrote:
> > All of this wouldn't be a problem if you'd just have mature players and
> > DMs who don't think players with characters who can do "nifty" stuff
> > are inherently a bad thing. Any player doing one or two level dips in
> > Prestige Classes is not caring about the prestige classes but rather
> > the abilities. That's an immature player. However, someone else
> > playing a bard then going into Subline Chord all the way just wants to
> > play a Sumbline Chord. If a cleric Pelor sees travels the world and
> > notices a lot of undead about, it's logical sense for him to want to be
> > a radiant Servant. If the players, not just with radiant Servant, are
> > coming up with lots of interesting ways to deal with undead, it's the
> > DM's fault because it is the DM who's constantly sending undead at
> > them. It's only natural the players are going to come up with tactics
> > to deal with them.
> >
>
> I don't think wanting to be the best at what you are is "immature".
>
> - Justisaur

Tell that to 3.0 complainers about one level drops into ranger ...

Then why all this worry how many "hits" a prestige class gets in a
google search? Then it just comes down to a DM not wanting the player
characters to do "nifty" things, define "nifty" with other quotables as
"powerful", "versatile", "unique", "something a particular monster can
do too", "something just different" "a character who is really, really
good at something" ...

Obligatory disclaimer: Yes, a DM is entitled to have control of the
campaign world. Just because something was published doesn't mean it
has to be in the game. Blah Blah Blah.

2E was generally about what player characters could not do.** The
Players' Options series talked about they could do. That series was
panned. 3E changed the perspective, providing stuff and support of
what player characters could do. People cried foul, giving us 3.5 to
tame things deemed out of control, yet some apparently still aren't
satisfied, define "some" as a colloquial term not any individual.

** 2E did have kits which was what a player character could do
perspective. However, they also got panned, Bladesinger being chief
among them, thus continuing my point.

Gerald Katz
Anonymous
June 27, 2005 3:07:04 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Justisaur <justisaur@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> Maybe I'll go back to my old 2e rule. I have to have the book, if I
> don't you can buy it for me and get a freebee out of it.

The rules for my game:

1. I will always bring the core books (PHB, DMG, MM) for my reference
(when I finally get a laptop I'll use an electronic copy of the RSRD)
2. Bring a PHB or share with someone else; mine is for *my* use
3. If you want to use something from another source
a. I must review it and decide whether it's allowed in the game or
not (I'm usually pretty easy this way)
b. I must have a copy to review while I'm away from the table (my
library is fairly extensive, so odds are good... if I don't have
it, a good photocopy will suffice)
c. I am not responsible for having it at the table when we play. If
I want to look something up and it's not there, you can't use it.

I'm fairly willing to add materials from other sources, and do. I've
come to the conclusion that if I also have to bring the references for
the other players, it gets way too unwieldy -- there could be stuff from
a dozen books. I'm responsible for the references I use, everyone is
responsible for theirs, and I need a copy so I don't get blindsided
during a game).

Some of the players who like to use non-core material got in the habit
of making two copies -- one goes to me, the other goes in a binder they
use as reference.

Hmm... I think I may request a copy anyway, with the addition clearly
marked. It's one thing to have the book it's from, it's another to have
a sheet of paper with the item clearly marked... something like an
explicit reminder that somebody's got it.


Keith
--
Keith Davies "Trying to sway him from his current kook-
keith.davies@kjdavies.org rant with facts is like trying to create
keith.davies@gmail.com a vacuum in a room by pushing the air
http://www.kjdavies.org/ out with your hands." -- Matt Frisch
Anonymous
June 27, 2005 1:35:44 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu wrote in news:1119780430.759267.43020
@z14g2000cwz.googlegroups.com:

>>
>> The Living Planar campaign
>
> Is that like Living Grayhawk? I always wanted to get involved in that,
> but never quite got around to it.

Living Planar is a good bit different from Living Greyhawk. For one
thing, LP is not associated with the RPGA. Also, they've changed
some of the rules around in quite significant ways.

Check out the LP-Talk group on Yahoo. If you have any questions,
I'll be happy to answer them.

>> often uses this mechanism (giving
>> spellcasting PrCs 9 caster levels out of 10) to balance things.
>> They call this "instabalance". Interestingly, they use this to
>> boost weak classes who don't get enough caster levels, in addition
>> to knocking down high-powered PrCs.
>
> Meh. This is a good fix in some cases, and not so good in others.

Yeah, but they were going for a simple fix that does most of what you
need. One thing to keep in mind is that, unlike a lot of other
campaigns, you can start out as high as 14th level, play a wide
variety of races (including ones with LAs), and buy magic items
(using a sizable pile of cash) at character creation. However,
a number of magical effects don't work in the default setting,
which changes the balance of some prestige classes.

-Ben Adams
Anonymous
June 28, 2005 2:02:01 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Werebat wrote:
> Justisaur wrote:
>
> >
> > Hadsil wrote:
> >
> >>All of this wouldn't be a problem if you'd just have mature players and
> >>DMs who don't think players with characters who can do "nifty" stuff
> >>are inherently a bad thing. Any player doing one or two level dips in
> >>Prestige Classes is not caring about the prestige classes but rather
> >>the abilities. That's an immature player. However, someone else
> >>playing a bard then going into Subline Chord all the way just wants to
> >>play a Sumbline Chord. If a cleric Pelor sees travels the world and
> >>notices a lot of undead about, it's logical sense for him to want to be
> >>a radiant Servant. If the players, not just with radiant Servant, are
> >>coming up with lots of interesting ways to deal with undead, it's the
> >>DM's fault because it is the DM who's constantly sending undead at
> >>them. It's only natural the players are going to come up with tactics
> >>to deal with them.
> >>
> >
> >
> > I don't think wanting to be the best at what you are is "immature".
>
> Me either.
>
> My own character is something of a trip monkey, and has certainly been
> min/maxed. He uses the spiked chain, took the Thug variant of fighter
> for better skills (he has rogue levels as well), and has levels of
> Exotic Weapons Master for Flurry of Strikes and Trip Attack. But even
> with him, there are two or three build aspects that I urged my DM to ban
> so I wouldn't feel obligated to take them, because I did feel they were
> overpowered. For example, the old Expert Tactician feat, the Item
> Familiar feat from UA, and UA's Perform: Weapons Drill.

Ick, UA... The book basically comes with a warning in it that the
options in it could be overpowered. I would go the opposite way with
it and decide what you would allow, not what to disallow. Especially
as many of the options do not fit with each other.

- Justisaur
Anonymous
June 28, 2005 2:19:50 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Keith Davies wrote:
> Justisaur <justisaur@gmail.com> wrote:
> >
> > Maybe I'll go back to my old 2e rule. I have to have the book, if I
> > don't you can buy it for me and get a freebee out of it.
>
> The rules for my game:
>
> 1. I will always bring the core books (PHB, DMG, MM) for my reference
> (when I finally get a laptop I'll use an electronic copy of the RSRD)
> 2. Bring a PHB or share with someone else; mine is for *my* use
> 3. If you want to use something from another source
> a. I must review it and decide whether it's allowed in the game or
> not (I'm usually pretty easy this way)
> b. I must have a copy to review while I'm away from the table (my
> library is fairly extensive, so odds are good... if I don't have
> it, a good photocopy will suffice)
> c. I am not responsible for having it at the table when we play. If
> I want to look something up and it's not there, you can't use it.
>
> I'm fairly willing to add materials from other sources, and do. I've
> come to the conclusion that if I also have to bring the references for
> the other players, it gets way too unwieldy -- there could be stuff from
> a dozen books. I'm responsible for the references I use, everyone is
> responsible for theirs, and I need a copy so I don't get blindsided
> during a game).
>
> Some of the players who like to use non-core material got in the habit
> of making two copies -- one goes to me, the other goes in a binder they
> use as reference.
>
> Hmm... I think I may request a copy anyway, with the addition clearly
> marked. It's one thing to have the book it's from, it's another to have
> a sheet of paper with the item clearly marked... something like an
> explicit reminder that somebody's got it.
>

That's a pretty good idea. I'm already carrying enough stuff to the
game for a mule.
Anonymous
June 28, 2005 8:18:08 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Justisaur wrote:

> Ick, UA... The book basically comes with a warning in it that the
> options in it could be overpowered. I would go the opposite way with
> it and decide what you would allow, not what to disallow. Especially
> as many of the options do not fit with each other.
>
> - Justisaur

I'll take your "Ick" and raise you a "Cool". Yes, I agree Unearthed
Arcana offers powerful stuff. I like the gestalt rules, for example,
not because of what they do but rather they exist at all as a produced
3E product. It is refreshing to see for a change game rules up-front
admitting and at the same time promoting an idea that makes for
"powerful" characters, something in support of those who like
high-powered games. I'll accept Unearthed Arcanaa not for everyone but
only on condition you agree it's not for no one either, and especially
no "except for Munchkins".

By the way, the book even admits itself not all of its rules work
together.

Gerald Katz
Anonymous
June 28, 2005 10:12:48 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Justisaur wrote:

>
> Werebat wrote:
>
>>Justisaur wrote:
>>
>>
>>>Hadsil wrote:
>>>
>>>
>>>>All of this wouldn't be a problem if you'd just have mature players and
>>>>DMs who don't think players with characters who can do "nifty" stuff
>>>>are inherently a bad thing. Any player doing one or two level dips in
>>>>Prestige Classes is not caring about the prestige classes but rather
>>>>the abilities. That's an immature player. However, someone else
>>>>playing a bard then going into Subline Chord all the way just wants to
>>>>play a Sumbline Chord. If a cleric Pelor sees travels the world and
>>>>notices a lot of undead about, it's logical sense for him to want to be
>>>>a radiant Servant. If the players, not just with radiant Servant, are
>>>>coming up with lots of interesting ways to deal with undead, it's the
>>>>DM's fault because it is the DM who's constantly sending undead at
>>>>them. It's only natural the players are going to come up with tactics
>>>>to deal with them.
>>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>I don't think wanting to be the best at what you are is "immature".
>>
>>Me either.
>>
>>My own character is something of a trip monkey, and has certainly been
>>min/maxed. He uses the spiked chain, took the Thug variant of fighter
>>for better skills (he has rogue levels as well), and has levels of
>>Exotic Weapons Master for Flurry of Strikes and Trip Attack. But even
>>with him, there are two or three build aspects that I urged my DM to ban
>>so I wouldn't feel obligated to take them, because I did feel they were
>>overpowered. For example, the old Expert Tactician feat, the Item
>>Familiar feat from UA, and UA's Perform: Weapons Drill.
>
>
> Ick, UA... The book basically comes with a warning in it that the
> options in it could be overpowered. I would go the opposite way with
> it and decide what you would allow, not what to disallow. Especially
> as many of the options do not fit with each other.

Actually I think UA is overall pretty good and balanced -- even some of
the things that LOOK overpowered aren't (<cough> Human Paragon <cough>).
Being able to buy off LA actually makes playing low-number LA races a
viable option. The variant classes like Thug are flavorful and quite
well-balanced IMO (thug gives up the 1st level fighter bonus feat and
heavy armor proficiency in exchange for "underworld" class skills and 2
more skill points per level). And so on.

Gestalt characters are WAY overpowered, but are meant to be so and the
book itself says they aren't balanced in the "typical" campaign.

Item Familiar and Weapons Drill are the only two things from UA that I
have found to be problematic, although to be fair I haven't pored over
the whole book. And any other munchkin radiance it might have is
probably outshone by my copy of BoED sitting on the shelf with it.

- Ron ^*^
Anonymous
June 28, 2005 11:50:17 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Werebat <ranpoirier@cox.net> wrote:
>
>
> laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu wrote:
>> Werebat wrote:
>
>>>So, how about it? How many spellcaster levels would the RSP need to
>>>lose in order to be "balanced"?
>>
>>
>> One is plenty.
>>
>>
>>>When would he have to lose them?
>>
>>
>> Level 1. But certainly no later than level 3.
>>
>>
>>>Would players still choose to play an RSP?
>>
>>
>> Maybe. Probably not. Losing a caster level hurts, bad. And when we get
>> right down to it, none of the RsoP's bennies have the "wow" factor
>> needed to overcome the loss of a caster level.
>>
>> I'm thinking that dropping their BAB to poor might be enough. None of
>> the RsoP's abilities are combat-focused
>
> Bzzt. They get martial weapon proficiency, for some unknown reason. So
> they can use longbows and greatswords.
>
> I think they gave them martial weapon proficiency so players who want to
> get the PrC past their DMs can "volunteer" to "give up" martial weapon
> proficiency to "tone the PrC down", which is something they weren't
> going to use anyway. :^)

That's a dumb design decision, then. If it gets taken out by 'all
right-thinking DMs', it gets left in by the not-so-right-thinking.

AFAICT, RSP are *not* martial classes -- they've got the lower hit die
and get bunches of supernatural abilities.

>> and this change would template
>> the RsoP as a true believer who walks in a transcendent state of faith
>> and bliss, receiving more powerful boons from Pelor while losing out on
>> earthly things like combat effectiveness.
>
> This makes some degree of sense, and is in keeping with the lower hit
> points -- but not the martial weapon proficiency.
>
>
>>>Say he lost a spellcasting level at 1st level in the class. Would it be
>>>balanced then? Would anyone take it?
>>
>>
>> I'd say it would be balanced on paper, but nobody would take it, for
>> psychological reasons. When taking a PrC, most players tend to focus on
>> what they lose out on. Losing a caster level right up front is real
>> bad, and they won't have anything hugely flashy to look forward to in
>> latter levels.
>
> I think 3rd level would be the time to lose a spellcaster level, right
> when they gain +2 to Will saves and offer the same to anyone standing
> near them.

That makes some sense, in that you are getting something else nifty 'in
exchange'.

>> Losing BAB might be better, because it's a much more "gradual" loss,
>> making it somewhat more acceptable.
>
> Thematically I agree with you, especially if you also drop martial
> weapon proficiency.

I agree. After having read the class in question:

.. keep reduced HD
.. reduce BAB to poor (1/2)
.. remove MWP

This is a 'magicky cleric', not a 'combatant cleric'.

RAW he gets a bunch of magic goodies that make him better than a cleric,
without requiring any suboptimal choices (IIRC) -- he has to take Extra
Turning and focus on clerical skills, *wah* -- and only having to give
up 1 hp/level.

Very nice. Too nice, IMO. *Nerf*. Now better balanced.


Keith
--
Keith Davies "Trying to sway him from his current kook-
keith.davies@kjdavies.org rant with facts is like trying to create
keith.davies@gmail.com a vacuum in a room by pushing the air
http://www.kjdavies.org/ out with your hands." -- Matt Frisch
Anonymous
June 28, 2005 11:53:06 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu <laszlo_spamhole@freemail.hu> wrote:
>
>
> Werebat wrote:
>
>> I think they gave them martial weapon proficiency so players who want to
>> get the PrC past their DMs can "volunteer" to "give up" martial weapon
>> proficiency to "tone the PrC down", which is something they weren't
>> going to use anyway. :^)
>
> Wha? MWP for cleric is _awesome_. For certain builds, at least. "Combat
> clerics" are very viable, and not having to spend a feat on MWP for a
> weapon is a great boon.

.... and these ones get *all* of them.

Too nice. Not as bad if you only use one, but potentially horrible.

OTOH, I could see a 'martial cleric' with combat goodies rather than
more magic (War domain leaps to mind) that full MWP would suit. Of
course, it's probably easier to say "be a Ftr/Clr if you want that".

>> > Losing BAB might be better, because it's a much more "gradual" loss,
>> > making it somewhat more acceptable.
>>
>> Thematically I agree with you, especially if you also drop martial
>> weapon proficiency.
>
> Yeah, drop it. The PrC has plenty to offer without it.

"RSP gains no weapon or armor proficiencies."


Keith
--
Keith Davies "Trying to sway him from his current kook-
keith.davies@kjdavies.org rant with facts is like trying to create
keith.davies@gmail.com a vacuum in a room by pushing the air
http://www.kjdavies.org/ out with your hands." -- Matt Frisch
Anonymous
June 28, 2005 11:55:38 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Werebat <ranpoirier@cox.net> wrote:
>
> So, resolved: drop martial weapon proficiency, lower BAB to wizard
> levels. Do you think those changes basically balance the PrC? Because
> I think one other thing I could do is drop the Fort saves to Poor
> instead of Good, since what we're doing is making it less of a martial
> class.

I don't think it's necessary. It feels about right just losing the MWP
and reducing the BAB. They're healers and undead-hunters, they should
be running into disease and negative level checks fairly frequently.
The good Fort is appropriate.


Keith
--
Keith Davies "Trying to sway him from his current kook-
keith.davies@kjdavies.org rant with facts is like trying to create
keith.davies@gmail.com a vacuum in a room by pushing the air
http://www.kjdavies.org/ out with your hands." -- Matt Frisch
Anonymous
June 29, 2005 12:05:35 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Keith Davies wrote:

> Werebat <ranpoirier@cox.net> wrote:
>
>>So, resolved: drop martial weapon proficiency, lower BAB to wizard
>>levels. Do you think those changes basically balance the PrC? Because
>>I think one other thing I could do is drop the Fort saves to Poor
>>instead of Good, since what we're doing is making it less of a martial
>>class.
>
>
> I don't think it's necessary. It feels about right just losing the MWP
> and reducing the BAB. They're healers and undead-hunters, they should
> be running into disease and negative level checks fairly frequently.
> The good Fort is appropriate.

Good point.

- Ron ^*^
Anonymous
June 29, 2005 12:41:00 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Justisaur <justisaur@gmail.com> wrote:
>
>
> Keith Davies wrote:
>> Justisaur <justisaur@gmail.com> wrote:
>> >
>> > Maybe I'll go back to my old 2e rule. I have to have the book, if I
>> > don't you can buy it for me and get a freebee out of it.
>>
>> The rules for my game:
>>
>> 1. I will always bring the core books (PHB, DMG, MM) for my reference
>> (when I finally get a laptop I'll use an electronic copy of the RSRD)
>> 2. Bring a PHB or share with someone else; mine is for *my* use
>> 3. If you want to use something from another source
>> a. I must review it and decide whether it's allowed in the game or
>> not (I'm usually pretty easy this way)
>> b. I must have a copy to review while I'm away from the table (my
>> library is fairly extensive, so odds are good... if I don't have
>> it, a good photocopy will suffice)
>> c. I am not responsible for having it at the table when we play. If
>> I want to look something up and it's not there, you can't use it.
>>
>> I'm fairly willing to add materials from other sources, and do. I've
>> come to the conclusion that if I also have to bring the references for
>> the other players, it gets way too unwieldy -- there could be stuff from
>> a dozen books. I'm responsible for the references I use, everyone is
>> responsible for theirs, and I need a copy so I don't get blindsided
>> during a game).
>>
>> Some of the players who like to use non-core material got in the habit
>> of making two copies -- one goes to me, the other goes in a binder they
>> use as reference.
>>
>> Hmm... I think I may request a copy anyway, with the addition clearly
>> marked. It's one thing to have the book it's from, it's another to have
>> a sheet of paper with the item clearly marked... something like an
>> explicit reminder that somebody's got it.
>
> That's a pretty good idea. I'm already carrying enough stuff to the
> game for a mule.

Which, keeping a paper ('single-sheet') copy of any non-core references?
I wasn't (quite) doing that before. Most of the non-core stuff I was
using was monsters, though, so I'd make a copy of the monster writeup
and bring that. Also handy because I could scribble notes on it at the
table, etc.

Or do you mean my rules in general? I found they worked fairly well,
once the players got into the habit of "Keith's not going to bring
everything *I* need".


Keith
--
Keith Davies "Trying to sway him from his current kook-
keith.davies@kjdavies.org rant with facts is like trying to create
keith.davies@gmail.com a vacuum in a room by pushing the air
http://www.kjdavies.org/ out with your hands." -- Matt Frisch
Anonymous
June 29, 2005 12:44:02 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Hadsil wrote:
>
> Justisaur wrote:
>
>>Hadsil wrote:
>>
>>>All of this wouldn't be a problem if you'd just have mature players and
>>>DMs who don't think players with characters who can do "nifty" stuff
>>>are inherently a bad thing.

I still struggle with my old ADnD aversion to that these days, but
it's getting better. 8]

>>>Any player doing one or two level dips in Prestige Classes is not caring
>>>about the prestige classes but rather the abilities.

Pretigue classes are just a chain of abilities with a stack of
prerequisites; no more, no less. Any sensible DM will let you join the
assasins guild without taking Assasin levels, and visa-versa.

>>>That's an immature player. However, someone else playing a bard then
>>>going into Subline Chord all the way just wants to play a Sumbline Chord.

Or just wants to play a Brd with 9th level Src/Wiz spells.


>>>If the players, not just with radiant Servant, are coming up with lots
>>>of interesting ways to deal with undead, it's the DM's fault because it
>>>is the DM who's constantly sending undead at them. It's only natural
>>>the players are going to come up with tactics to deal with them.

And if the players take RSoP levels regardless of the number of
undead (or Loremaster when you don't care about knowing stuff, and so
on) then you've just distorted the game in a bad way.

Remember: it's not that a thing that's slightly overpowered is a
problem in itself, it's that it tends to invalidate the 100 other
development tracks you /could/ have taken.

>>I don't think wanting to be the best at what you are is "immature".
>
> Tell that to 3.0 complainers about one level drops into ranger ...

The real problem there was the lack of 2nd level rangers in
existance. I didn't mind the idea that most TWFers had spent some time
training with the local Rangers club, there just didn't seem to be any
logical reason for there to be a club of rangers to train them; the
class was just too narrowly focused.


> Obligatory disclaimer: Yes, a DM is entitled to have control of the
> campaign world. Just because something was published doesn't mean it
> has to be in the game. Blah Blah Blah.

You've got to go pretty far off-base before you're unable to fit
the classes in a world with a quick re-write of the flavour text. I tear
alot of them apart and replace them with a feat chain.


> 2E was generally about what player characters could not do.** The
> Players' Options series talked about they could do. That series was
> panned. 3E changed the perspective, providing stuff and support of
> what player characters could do.

That was the media line. Good to see someone swallowed it.

> People cried foul, giving us 3.5 to tame things deemed out of
> control, yet some apparently still aren't satisfied, define "some"
> as a colloquial term not any individual.

3.5 Core can be played quite nicely out of the box (as could 3.0,
if you could stand the 'must have' spells and items), and the 1001
PClasses and feats are better than the 3.0 versions across the board.
Doesn't mean it's perfect, but there's only a dozen or so new
things that are out of whack. Fixing the too good stuff opens up a
_huge_ range of options if you've got the various splatbooks: it's just
hard to know up-front what the slightly-too-good stuff is.


> ** 2E did have kits which was what a player character could do
> perspective. However, they also got panned, Bladesinger being chief
> among them, thus continuing my point.

If you don't think the Bladesinger had serious design flaws, you
weren't playing the same game as the rest of the world.

--
tussock

Aspie at work, sorry in advance.
Anonymous
June 29, 2005 12:44:03 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Hadsil wrote:

> I do recognize that this is only my personal experience, but I don't
> like the implied assumption through aquiesance there's a wrongness that
> a prestige class can do something "kewl". It is a matter of degree,
> but I don't see every cleric of Pelor going into Radiant Servant.

Then they are fools. There is no reason NOT to take the class, RAW, as
opposed to more cleric levels.

Yes, yes, "roleplaying". When I make a cleric of Pelor, he will go into
Thaumaturge because that's something I'd like to play. But I'm not
blind, I'm far better off taking RSP from a powergaming perspective, and
that bugs me. I don't want to feel obligated to take RSP if I'm playing
a cleric of Pelor.

- Ron ^*^
Anonymous
June 29, 2005 12:44:41 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

tussock <scrub@clear.net.nz> wrote:
> Hadsil wrote:
>>
>> Obligatory disclaimer: Yes, a DM is entitled to have control of the
>> campaign world. Just because something was published doesn't mean it
>> has to be in the game. Blah Blah Blah.
>
> You've got to go pretty far off-base before you're unable to fit
> the classes in a world with a quick re-write of the flavour text. I
> tear alot of them apart and replace them with a feat chain.

I'm working (sometimes) on a similar project. It's surprising how many
classes you can get rid of with carefully chosen feat chains.

You need more feats to do it, but I think many classes can go away.


Keith
--
Keith Davies "Trying to sway him from his current kook-
keith.davies@kjdavies.org rant with facts is like trying to create
keith.davies@gmail.com a vacuum in a room by pushing the air
http://www.kjdavies.org/ out with your hands." -- Matt Frisch
Anonymous
June 29, 2005 12:45:32 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Justisaur <justisaur@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> Ick, UA... The book basically comes with a warning in it that the
> options in it could be overpowered. I would go the opposite way with
> it and decide what you would allow, not what to disallow. Especially
> as many of the options do not fit with each other.

Indeed.

UA has lots of goodness in it... but you need to be careful in picking
what you want to include.


Keith
--
Keith Davies "Trying to sway him from his current kook-
keith.davies@kjdavies.org rant with facts is like trying to create
keith.davies@gmail.com a vacuum in a room by pushing the air
http://www.kjdavies.org/ out with your hands." -- Matt Frisch
!