I did a short mock adventure with a Hunter the other day. Nothing fancy, just a lvl 5 Hunter vs some goblins, goblin dogs and wolves.
I think the Hunter needs Wild Empathy, both its parent classes have it, and it fits the class.
Second: I'd rather see the Hunter gain Trapmaking than their wild aspect. Trapmaking woulod give the hunter some battlefield control and nifty tricks. It would also make the class more suited for "solo" play or smaller party play since it would have the Animal Companion, some battlefield control and some spells for buffs and heals.
A two-man party of a Hunter and Summoner should be able to play through an AP with relatively little trouble. Right now the Hunter has an unthematic ability.
I learned to roleplay by reading Jack Chick's Dark Dungeons and watching Tom Hanks in Mazes and Monsters.
I roleplay so intensely that when I die in the game I die in real life.
I ROLEPLAY WITH THE INTENSITY OF A THOUSAND EXPLODING SUNS!
Prince of Knives wrote:
I think that your perception of spellcasters is skewed by your GM's leniency. If APL CR combats in my game had the wizard twiddling his thumbs 3/4 of the time there would be a problem.
I have a Wizard AND a Sorcerer in my group of players, and they usually spend more than one spell a combat. They aren't dumb players, they just need to contribute meaningfully to the challenges at play.
This means that at levels 5+ on an average day of adventuring (5 encounters) they are going to be low on spells.
The Arcanist is going to face some real problems when it comes to meaningfully contributing to combat every round.
Prince of Knives wrote:
The average combat lasts 4 rounds. What do you do with the other three?
Rubber Ducky guy wrote:
Quit complaining, you had a replacement character waiting in the very next encounter.
Prince of Knives wrote:
No concerns here, I'll see how it plays out in a playtest though :)
Your characters ran away, and came back with a better plan. What did your GM expect you to do? Just keep running your heads into the bloody thing until it rusted to death thanks to the salt content of your blood?
As a GM who has run this very scenario I applaud what you managed to do. A Cleric has a Wisdom of 18+, and would intuit that there is a better solution than standing in two rows and politely hitting each other with magic weapons. That's not even a great solution since in this particular scenario:
It can get healed by Gorum.
Other fun solutions include:
Stone Shape - Just put a stone box around the Golem (or a pit beneath it followed by a lid). If it can't perceive you, it won't attack you. And even if the GM fiats it, it'll take time to bust through all that rock. Just skip past it and be on your merry way.
Golems are literally the worst creature in the Bestiaries, they are immune to practically everything and fights with them just end up a slog.
moon glum wrote:
I don't agree with your assessment on dips. Anyone that would dip a rogue level (and quite a few would), would end up picking investigator instead because they would get Sneak Attack AND Inspiration AND Extracts AND Trapfinding. There's a lot of gold in them thar hills.
Delaying sneak attack to 2 mitigates some of those issues.
They have paid, experienced designers to theorycraft.
The ability to crowd source playtest data is something they can't do in house.
I think theorycrafters are listened to as well (see Arcanist revision). But they need to see if the hypotheses put forth by the designers and theorycrafters hold water in actual play.
As for not having time to playtest. I've been running Kingmaker for going on 4 years now. I asked my group if we could take two weeks to run a playtest at level 1 and level 7. They were cool with it and so that's what we're doing. Long-term campaigns will still be there when the playtest is over.
I hope the core spellcasting stays the same, but I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the redirection we're seeing here. This is the "Chosen One" mage that the Avatar, Pug of Crydee and countless other mages are built around.
I can't wait to see the update.
The idea of higher crit multiplier weapons granting more panache would be a good incentive to try weapons other than the rapier and scimitar.
Another idea to regain panache: If you succeed on a combat maneuver against a foe with HD equal to your level or higher (for whip builds).
After my playtest on Wednesday I got to thinking about the Swashbuckler's Parry & Riposte abilities.
I think they should be rolled into a single ability.
Thus he expends only one AoO and one Panache when he does his neat trick. It also means that Combat Reflexes becomes an OPTION rather than a REQUIREMENT to use what I think is the class' signature trick.
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
While I'm all for the class having Sneak attack (it fits the hitting the weak-spot flavour for Sherlock), I do think it just needs to be toned down (perhaps to a maximum of 5 or 6d6). Nobody should be sneak attacking at the rogue or ninja level.
Also I would also like to posit another point of inspiration (and it's who I based the Investigator Build from in my first playtest): Samuel Vimes of the Ankh Morpork city watch. Sam Vimes is a bit more of a hardboiled detective, and he solves his crimes through a combination of dogged determination and constant working on the problem. He fights dirty when needs be and sneak attack definitely fits.
Another point of inspiration might be Bigby Wolf from Fables.
I guess what I'm sayingn is that the Investigator does need to be a bit of a bastard, and the hardboiled detective might need to ramp up SA while the classic detective might need to ramp it down.
Here's what I asked at the end of my playtest:
What was the most fun aspect of your character's class? (This is to gauge what works, it's important to let the design team to know this).
What was the least fun aspect? (This is just to gauge what the player didn't enjoy about the class. They don't need to have an answer to this if they enjoyed it all. This is important data.)
What bit of rules did you have most trouble with, for example what did you find confusing, or not useful about your abilities, what abilities didn't you use at all this session? (This question is to gauge what language might be unclear, and whether some abilties need to be cut or changed)
Would you still play [component of class] knowing this class exists as an alternative? (This question is to gauge whether the hybrid robs too much of the parent classes uniqueness.)
This may be a tangent but it must be said: A swashbuckler buckles swash. Swashing buckles? Well that makes no sense. Upper Class Laugh.
My notes on Steampunk Pitax are still being compiled, since you're just starting you have a bit of time so hopefully before the end of the month you'll have what you need to finish on a great capstone in book five :)
Matt Thomason wrote:
I agree with the Dwarf and his collection of strange artifacts and his horribly piscine friend.
They've already said the book will have ways for characters who don't take the hybrids to get some use out of the hybrid's abilities, so let's all just do that one thing that we're meant to do and test by playing.
Fun Fact: In 3.0 & 3.5 due to a misunderstaning of the rules this is how we played ALL of our spellcasters (Prep in the morning and cast in any combination all day), Cleric and Druid included (the latter two just never needed to prepare Cure or Summon Nature's Ally spells). It was a lot of fun to play that way and it's a lot less intimidating to new players.
Here's why: A new player prepares their spells for the day and then comes across a situation where they didn't prepare the "right" spell for the job, they feel stupider than their character (who with an intelligence of 18+ might have guessed their future needs). The Arcanist is a great "my first prepared caster", they might eventually graduate to Wizard (who is consistently firing at a higher power level).
I would like to see the Swashbuckler regain Panache by making a pun, joke or insult along with their attack, if it makes the table laugh they get the Panache back.
Perhaps as an optional rule (in the same way the Gunslinger got Daring Deeds in a side-bar as a way to recharge grit).
While I like the hybrids using mechanics of their parent classes, I would like to see some more niche protection.
At this point an Investigator gets: Sneak attack (9d6), Trap Finding AND Poison Use, with the addition of Inspiration to increase skill successes AND rogue talents that can be taken as investigator talents this is a class that just makes a vanilla rogue a worse choice for doing all the things a rogue is supposed to do. Please try to protect some of the niches.
I should probably leave another note:
The villain of the adventure was a Ratfolk Shaman (Bones), with a Rat Familiar. He did pretty good at getting both of his first level spells off against the PCs before getting completely murdered. As far as a 1st level villain goes the Shaman is pretty simple to run and figure out tactics for. A good pick for a GM looking for an interesting divine caster foe (particularly as a cultist as I reflavoured this one). I think a Cultist archetype for the Shaman might be a go.
Tonight me and my players got together to play a first level dungeon with some of the new Hybrid classes. Our party consisted of five characters, using 15 point buy and the average gold listed for each class.
Adventure flavor text
A plague runs rampant in the city, and the only clue are rats with strange sigils carved into their bodies. Five heroes brave a sewer dungeon to find the source of the virulent plague.
Encounter 1: Sewer Entrance (CR 1)
A trio of ratfolk are hidden behind a curtain of sticky vines and moss inside a sewer pipe. The Investigator spots them and combat begins (nobody is surprised).
The ratfolk use their swarming ability but don't really land any hits against the party. Once two are dead the third flees into the sewers closing a portcullis behind him.
Verdict: At this point not much besides basic attack rolls are exchanged. Nothing to really differentiate any characters at this point.
Encounter 2: Skill Challenge Portcullis
Despite an alternate route our PCs decide to give chase and come to the portcullis. The Brawler holds up the portcullis so the others can squeeze through, it's the Slayer who spots the lever to pull the thing up.
Encounter 3: Dire Rat Kennels (CR 1)
Creatures: Ratfolk. Dire Rat (x3)
Another exchange of attack rolls. This time the Brawler focuses on grappling the Ratfolk who has been sniping the PCs. At this point the slayer has used his Favoured Target ability almost every round with his shortbow.
Some Dire rats get some lucky strikes against the Slayer, but this fight is more or less a foregone conclusion.
[b]Encounter 4: Horned Rat Trap (CR 1)
The Brawler tries to kick a statue of a horned rat, but before he can do so the statue charges forth and knocks him down for 7 damage. He uses a potion to heal up while the Investigator completely disables the trap (DC 16 Perception/Disable Device. Mechanical Trap. Attack roll +10. 1d6+1 damage). Springing the trap makes the next room aware of the party's approach.
Encounter 5: Congregation of Rats (CR 3)
The players discover a scroll detailing a terrible ritual that gives a small aspect of Murnath to normal rats via an unspeakable ritual. This is what they need to give to the temple to solve the problem. Time to leave.
Encounter 6: ZOMBIES! (CR 2)
Creatures: 8 x Kobold Zombies (With further -2 Str, no armour bonus, but ratling swarming ability)
The PCs decide to explore the one unexplored room on the upper level and it almost spells their DOOM. The Swashbuckler still very weak from the previous fight refuses to go near the zombies and throws daggers at them. The Arcanist ENLARGES the Brawler who immediately grabs a zombie and starts tanking. Drawing ALL their attention.
Arcanist (Destined Universalist) - Never played a prepared caster before and only realized near the end she could play spells in any combination. Liked the blood power, but was wary of spending that last point (she wanted to be able to RUN from those zombies) Also the party was surprised to discover the Arcanist didn't have Use Magic Device, they felt it would be a great fit for the class but it's just not available.
Swashbuckler - Liked Panache and that it could come back, but felt that parry and riposte were too expensive to use considering she only has 3 panache to start with. (Two Panache and TWO attacks of Opportunity!) She also missed a lot of attacks because her build is DEX focused and Swashbuckler's Finesse doesn't arrive until 2nd level (and doesn't seem to qualify the Swashbuckler for any feats in the finesse tree). It means Combat Reflexes becomes the MUST HAVE option at level 1. Perhaps triggering Riposte just whenever the enemy misses might be a more economic way of doing it.
Slayer - Player enjoyed the class, but felt it didn't have a lot of variety in actions. Every round seemed to be "Favoured Target, Attack". Even reading higher levels the player felt that an actual Ranger/Rogue had more interesting options (due to archetypes).
Brawler - Felt that it was a great monk fix, but would still play a monk for ki abilities.
Investigator - Felt that the Inspiration mechanic didn't do enough, that perhaps a flat bonus being added to the die roll (perhaps Intelligence Mod) would be a better way to model the ability, as spending TWO points of inspiration on an attack roll and STILL missing felt flat. As a GM I felt the Investigator plunders too much from the rogue (9d6 sneak attack, trap finding AND can pick rogue talents, AND 6 skill points per level AND all the rogue's key skills, PLUS extracts and alchemy and poison use AND better at skill rolls thanks to Inspiration? It steals what tiny shred of niche protection the rogue had left). I feel the Investigator should maybe drop Sneak attack down to 5d6 to 6d6 maximum (levels 4, 8, 12, 16, 20). A hybrid class can freely borrow from the vocabulary of other classes, but probably shouldn't be more fluent in their language (so to speak).
Over all everyone had a fun time, and though the dice weren't with our party much of the night there was something learned by all.
Next week we hope to try a level 7 one-shot titled: "Lair of the Wererat King".
(Full stats for the characters will be available sometime tomorrow as I have to scan and upload some of the sheets).
Haha, now you can add appropriate voice acting.
That doesn't mean it's been done right.
You hate THEMES? Who hates THEMES? That's like hating FLAVOURS."Some things are unpleasantly bitter. I hate all flavours now."
Without themes all that we have is a game of Mathematics and Spreadsheets. I've heard of people who do accounting as a hobby. Those people frighten me in profound ways.
I am sad to see no Engineer class.
With any luck we might see it in a future product (say an Advanced Genre Guide?) but the Brawler has me excited.
The Skald is interesting, but doesn't grab me.
I hate having to wait until level 3-5 to embody my concept. Swashbuckler via duelist takes a LONG time to get off the ground.
The Investigator is something I've really wanted for a long while, a non-magical character that can capitalize on intelligence.
A slayer sounds like a great 1st level assassin.
The Shaman sounds like it's pretty aura based thanks to its spirits. So I'm excited to see what the playtest brings.
Oh, and Candlemere is the home of the Candlemere Academy for Magically Gifted Youngsters.
I tried to warn them against building a magical academy atop an unstable Elfgate that had already drawn the attention of Yog-Sothoth AND the Fellnight Queen but NOOOOOO, who would listen to me. I'm just every NPC ever >:-D
This is going to end badly.
I think perhaps it might be better to stay on topic and talk about house rules.
At the beginning of a campaign the group decides whether to go with Point Buy or to Roll an Array (4d6 drop the lowest). Everyone uses the same array for character creation.
I love Mutants and Masterminds, but being a d20 based game it can also get a little bit combat heavy (although the combat is simplified thankfully).
Running Mutants and Masterminds you can fill a lot of different comic book genres, anywhere from an investigative Batman/Question/Daredevil style game (which I ran for a few sessions to my player's delight) to a more Four-Colour Avengers blockbuster style (which I have also done).
I think the best model is to run a PL 6 or 7 "High School Heroes", like X-Men, Teen Titans or M&M's own setting's Claremont Academy (in Freedom City). M&M is still my #1 favorite game.
Character creation can be daunting, but as long as you clearly establish the genre conventions and don't get too bogged down in details, the game itself runs smoothly.
The best part is the "hero point" economy, it's what allows you to have those very genre satisfying early defeats for the heroes so that they can bounce back and take down the villain later. Always err on being too generous with Hero Points rather than stingy and you'll be golden.
My group is playing Kingmaker for 4 years now. We love it. I'm GMing and yes, it's a fantastic skeleton for a campaign. I think you need to know that going in you will need to do work. You will need to adapt to your players and make the villains your own.
Go see my profile for how I've done it.
It's super important to remember that in Kingmaker it's the first time the players can be completely proactive. Everything the PCs do is the story. The world reacts to them. It's important for the GM to remember to update the reactions.
Krom the Barbarian worship gods that help him achieve victory and if they won't help? Then to HELL with them!
Krom have druid friend to reincarnate Krom. So him effectively immortal anyway.
What Krom alignment you ask? NONE YOU BUSINESS! This why Krom regularly eat lead paint, this make Krom undetectable to magic.