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I am in the same boat as Tinkergoth- I usually try to keep my campaigns very open. I like letting my parties make their own calls a decide how to carry their quest. Unfortunately 2/3rds of my gaming parties don't like the lack of direction and usually just wait for some NPC to tell them what they should be doing, so I often end up with railroaded games to party choice.
I also have an extensive library of character options (Core, Third Party, and Homebrew) to really create diverse characters...but my current group tends to have one class they play- over and over again. I still use these options for NPCs, but my group is actually pretty good at avoiding planned conflict, so they rarely get to battle my corbie scavengers or lamia gladiators but often end up in bar fights with drunks and well meaning guards.
Interjection Games wrote:
Alright, so there's interest. Let's change the topic, then. Barring the tinker, which needs a facelift, which class would you like to see in print? I can do one or two to test this out :)
I think having the Ethermancer and Edgewalker would be two really strong starting points.
The thought has crossed my mind but I am a fairly patient person. I am actually hoping he'll drop the current character and play a full blown healer, as that seems to be the role he is trying to fill right now. But let's not derail.
The Conduit from LIC does looks good, as does everything else in that book. Definitely take a look at it.
I use 3rd-party material extensively in my games, 3rd-party classes especially so. And in all of my experience I can say it has been worth it, even with the occasional ups and downs. Here are a few specific things I can think of:
Tinkers, Artificers, and Wonderbread Makers: In my extensive collection of 3rd-party classes I have started to notice a trend and that is engineering, tech-focused, build all the magic items classes are really popular among 3rd-party publishers; they work well in almost any game, but I have found two common issues that sprig up with these handymen classes.
1.) In a game where you want magic items to be rare or hard to find, these classes will just ruin your games. I had a game once set in the apocalyptic world of Metro 2033 where a player was running an artificer (the one found in the Tome of Secrets) which we played his class features off as weird science, not magic. Anyway the character was great but we quickly unraveled the sense of terror I had set up for the game with his ability to make really good gear. Going against an irradiated-dire bear in tight corridors? no problem, the artificer made all our bullets out of weird metal that bursts into flame, we got this. Oh no! Our home station is under siege by spider-bugs! No prob, the artificer can create some magic traps for us to set. Now this won't be problem in every game, but in the resource limited world of Metro it ruined the sense of limited supplies I was going for by making the stuff they did have super-good.
2.) The people playing these classes really need to learn how crafting works. This is actually happening to me right now- every odd Saturday I run a Necropunk-sorta game where one of my players is an artisan from Drop Dead Studios. Which is fine with me as I want someone to craft not-quite-magical, psionic powered necrotech, however the player doesn't know how crafting works and they refuse to actually learn. Every five second they are not involved with combat he tells me he is going to start making vials of cure light, and I then respond in a cave they have neither the equipment (he wasn't gotten a portable lab even though I have recommended it about five times) nor the time unless the party wants to wait hours for him to maybe make one (they don't). He says okay and then asks to do it again shortly after that.
I recommend writing up however your crafting rules work in your setting and handing these to your players who insist on playing the craftsmen classes.
Aside from this one gripe on artificer classes though I love every 3rd-party class I have ever purchased and ran, and think that having so many choices is what helps keep my gaming experiences fresh.
I have it and want to try it out, but unfortunately haven't had the chance yet. The game I am currently running is science-fiction, so dragons would be a bit out of place as NPCs, and the game I am in is okay with many 3rd-party classes but the world has no dragons so I have ended up play testing Incarnem there instead.
How would you say it plays firsthand? I've only been able to read and theorize, not test it out yet.
Co-founder, huh? Flattering but consider me more a minion at the moment- you're calling the shots' I'm following the orders. If I had an equal say in things we'd probably be left running in circles. That said where do you want to start?
First off consider me very on board. I really want to break into pro game design and I feel like a project like this will really help my experience. That, and I have longed to share my rules for shonen-Pathfinder campaigns; what a better place than here.
On to your feelings about Pathfinder classes- with a shinobi tier system the ninjas will not be on par with standard Pathfinder characters. Your absolutely right- Itachi would trounce a standard Pathfinder fighter, even if they were like 18th plus level; however how would Itachi stand next a that same fighter with a splash of mythic tiers? The fight is much ore even. Plus you even said so yourself you wanted this to not become too separated from standard Pathfinder. Designing a system were the usual classes can be utilized will allow just that. If you want we can still build a few base classes from the ground up but I still think the best design system is to allow a class and tier progression.
Speaking of tiers I had an idea- what if we had specific tiers to choose from. Again the tiers work basically like mythic ones: they are earned through story progression (read 'at GM's discretion') and offer you drastic abilities on top of your own. Specifically all the shinobi tiers would grant access to chakra and thus jutsu creation. But their would still be more beyond that.
One, we could have specific kinds of shinobi tiers, paths of ninja that iconic characters in the series have taken: jinjuriki, sage, prodigy, bloodline, and kinjutsu are the paths I can see now working in the system, each one representing the route in which the shinobi attains their power and what benefits/types of jutsu that gives them as they level.
Two, like access to chakra these tiers could have different universal bonuses they give. Such as making characters more acrobatic and martially inclined (again, that wuxia source book had rules calling from everyone to have the jumping abilities of monks and Improved Unarmed Strike as a free feat), as well as introducing active combat. When I ran my first Naruto game we hit a snag real quick- how do you recreate the last minute dodges and tactical deceptions set up in a turn based game? The answer is you really can't, not without preparing and delaying actions, something that really slows down games and will often leave matches were both opponents stare each other down for a whole round waiting for the other to go first.
So I made something called active combat, which is shoddy at best, I'll admit but could be refined easily with some group effort. The idea behind this was that players had another pool separate from their chakra that let them spend a reaction point to preform an immediate action, such as using a jutsu (if they either had the feat for it, or the jutsu was designed to be used like that, such as the replacement technique) or one of several different 'tactics' like avoiding dodge (+4 dodge bonus vs. attacking enemies attack) or even painful setup (letting the enemy hit you to add a bonus to your own follow up attack). I let players start out with three tactics and let them get one more at every 4th level, as well as through feats.
But anyway sign me aboard.
As a rule set, I'm not wanting to create an entirely new game per say. Just a modified version of Pathfinder.
I hear ya, neither am I. I'm just offering up a few ideas to make a campaign setting to do Naruto justice. Now if you just want to add shinobi to your Pathfinder game I can tell you how to do that in an instant, but they will be nerfed to be in line with Pathfinder characters.
Alright, I hear ya. I can even see your point on gestalt characters, that's just a personal opinion of mine anyway. But I say this next bit to help you, I really do: don't try making a shinobi base class. Or at least not just one with a few archetypes UNLESS your goal is to incorporate these characters into a standard Pathfinder campaign. Keep in mind I am stressing rules for a setting set specically set in the Naruto world.
Throwing out gestalt I hold utterly the best way to create the Naruto experience at this time is too have normal base classes (or at least special ones but the key point here is multple base classes) and then a seperate shinobi tier system. The reason behind this is because, well, just look at the ninja in Naruto; consistent they are not.
Now they all are pretty acrobatic and have access to killer jutsu, but beyond that they usually have nothing in common. Shikimaru is a fairly squishy ninja who emphasizes out-maneuvering his opponents. However we also got guys like Gai and Hoshigaki who wouldn't know subtle if it stabbed them in the face.
This is the problem you face making a single shinobi base class, because trust me I tried- everyone is going to have their own opinion of what the Naruto ninjas are like, and they won't be wrong. Even if you make archetypes you will have to make the changes so drastic you are basically making whole new classes instead. No, if you use base classes to cover broad character concepts and then you have a tier system to give everyone some common abilities and room to grow, it pays off in the end. Trust me on this.
I think we are agreeing on everything else though. I like your chakra rules as they are basically the ones I use, and recommend you make a chakra pool along the lines of (Con Mod + Wis Mod) x Level or Tier.
I am interested.
I run a lot of RPGs using various different systems- Naruto d20 is one I share a special connection with. I have ran it on three different occasions and each time there is fun to be had but also a headache as in the past the rules have been very up in the air. Thus I have been theorizing numerous routes to take to make a more solid rule set.
1.) Gestalt characters. Little Red Goblin games had a bunch of new rules in their recent wuxia source book that complemented Naruto well, and I feel one of these rules especially was true: gestalt. While making several base classes for the Naruto system seems like a good idea, I have found that simply letting someone combine two classes together freely lets them make a more varied ninja. In my games I would even consider letting wizard or sorcerer gestalts to represent someone with excess chakra. That said, I am not suggesting using magic in place of spells and such; rather...
2.) A Shinobi Tier System. Mythic Tiers are neat, but I feel like the mechanics of them can be broken down for other uses. So I propose this: While ninja characters gestalt to determine class features, they should have shinobi tiers that dictate things like their chakra pool, types of jutsu they can use, and even how strong that jutsu can be. Which leads us to...
3.) Jutsu themselves. In other established versions of Naruto d20 I have seen, everyone either wants to make lists of jutsu for either Vancian casting or psionic style manifesting. But both of these solutions remove crafting your own abilities, taking away a fun aspect of the game. In past games I ran I always had a learning system that while not perfect was flexible and let you make your own techniques. The principal was based on your level you had technique points- this wasn't an expendable pool but rather a limiter -you could use to build jutsu. Different features had different costs, like damage, saves, buffs, ect., you could buy for different technique points. These added togeather would determine A.) The mastering DC to learn/create the technique, and B.) The rank of the technique (E,D,C,B,A,S). It would also determine the chakra tax.
Looking for ideas like these?
1.) I like the idea behind an Int-based Warlord; someone who approaches tactical combat in a manner similar to Sun Tzu but the Warder does seem like a good fill to that notch. Still, if you ever like to continue the Int focused Warlord please feel free to share it here.
2.) Sorry to hear your distaste for psionics, it's a system I personally love (though not to the degree of 'let's replace it with everything' mantra some other fans for it have); that said how do you feel it is too close to the PP system? Aside from possible cost of maneuvers (and I am a bigger fan of tiering anyway) how does it make you feel it's oriented to psionic systems? Because I don't see how it is close to psionics mechanically other than having spending costs, but monks have ki and magus have arcana without crossing those wires I'd imagine.
As for your dice mechanic I am actually familiar with it and enjoy the concept- I just think it's ill suited for something like martial maneuvers. I feel like when you add a certain amount of randomness to a system, even in just the case of exertion, it paints that system as a random force in the game world. With certain types of magic and even psionics I think this would fit mechanically, but I feel that martial arts are a calculated thing, something that warriors prefer because it is something sure- an element that only depends on their skill, not the tides of fate. It's one of the things I really disliked about the Crusader from 3.5.
That said, I do really like the up and down dice mechanic representing extra effort and I was hoping you'd let me use it in an idea I had for the myrmidon's meta-combat system. Yes?
3.) While it may be true that Path of War probably covers all the missing ground, I've never felt that as being any reason to stop. In a game of character creation and customization I have found more options are never a bad thing. I mean look at the wizard and sorcerer- both fill the same role at the end of the day. However because both can be play in two different manners they can both exists, even in the same party at the same time.
New initiator classes, both official and homebrew, probably will step on the toes of PoWs existing three; I don't see that as any reason to not make new ones.
4.) I am glad my discipline concepts caught your eye. I was hoping people would find the ideas cool and it seems they do have potential. I have a few of them flessed out somewhat but need feed back and support to really get them off the ground.
Associated Skill: Preform(percussion)
Associated Weapons: Hammers, shields, clubs, and whip/flail weapons.
These are the ideas I have so far for Thundering Bell. Opinions?
So Dreamscarred Press is currently releasing their take on the Bo9S and with three core classes out it is looking good, even though I was skeptical before. That said, I have found myself often considering new maneuvers, disciplines, and even classes to add to the system. It's a project I have found a little daunting however, so I was hoping maybe I could get some help.
The purpose of this thread is to share ideas and concepts that people who like the idea Path of War (and Bo9S, for that matter) have come up with. Let's hear some ideas people.
Now I love the idea behind maneuvers (though not always) but I think it's weird that a martial system has it's initiator's preparing their maneuvers like wizards. So my ideas is to use a stamina system to represent strain that initiators face when preforming these devastating moves but still letting them freely pick from the attacks they know. Only characters who use maneuvers have stamina pools, though if anyone can think of any reason to let everyone get them let me know.
For initiators who receive their maneuvers from a source other than their class, like a fighter with the Martial Training feat series: 4 + highest BAB. For example, a fighter of 7th level with Martial Training II would have 11 stamina total (4 + 7 from highest BAB).
Natural initiators (warders, stalkers, warlords, etc.) have a slightly different pool formula: 4 + double their initiator level. If a character begins play in a non-initiator class but gains a stamina pool (like our example fighter) and then later multiclasses into a natural initiator he either uses whichever method would give him the greater amount of stamina.
Continuing, stamina is a fairly accessible resource. During any full round that stamina goes unused the initiator gains an amount of stamina back equal to the number of attacks they can make due to a high BAB. Again, using our level 7 fighter as an example- let's say he uses a maneuver that leaves him with only 7 stamina left. On his next round, if he opted to not make use of anymore maneuvers, he would recover 2 stamina as his BAB is +7/+2 at 7th level.
Naturally initiating classes can recover stamina this way too, or they can make use of their existing class features. These class features that normally allow these classes to recover one expanded maneuver instead recover an amount of stamina equal to their total initiator level.
Finally their is how fatigue and exhaustion factor into stamina. In addition to the normal penalties involved, and initiator who is fatigued has his stamina pool halved for as long as the condition persists, and must double the duration it takes to regain stamina through waiting (our fighter would have to wait two full rounds without initiating to get back his 2 stamina). The exhausted condition is even worse for our poor initiators- as long as the condition persists the initiator can only use 1/4th of their pool, and recovers no stamina until the condition is removed.
NOTE: The only thing I cannot decide on for this house rule is how much stamina should maneuvers cost for their level?
My ideas so far have been:
1.) Maneuvers follow the same formula for psionic powers, i.e. 1st level maneuvers spend 1 stamina, 2nd level 3, etc.
2.) Maneuvers are grouped in tiers, with the price increasing by two for each one. Tier One: 1st and 2nd level maneuvers cost 2 stamina, while Tier 2: 3rd and 4th level maneuvers cost 4 stamina to utilize, etc.
Disciplines and Classes
This section is a bit of a cop out as I don't really have anything here fleshed out but would love some help doing so.
First are class ideas, to which i have two, maybe three:
1.) The Myrmidon- again, I like the Path of War material so far, however I have found something kind of weird. With PoW, we have a initiator that is a stealthy monk, a living tank, and a bard who uses axes instead of lutes (the stalker, the warder, and the warlord respectively). Cool classes but I (and I bet I'm alone of this) feel like we are missing a pure kensei sort of class, an initiator who is not only a student of the blade but one who lives it, like the old swordsage and the warblade.
Basically I am looking to make a fighter alternative with class features to that revolve around mastering maneuvers, maybe even a class specific 'meta-combat' system to augment their maneuvers. I have few ideas but nothing concrete. Help appreciated.
2.) Halo Knight (Rebuild)- Dreamscarred had a pretty cool class out during the days of 3.5 called the Halo Knight that I recently have taken to updating to Pathfinder by mixing it with the Spirit Warrior class from Necromancer's of the Northwest; I recently have considered adding maneuvers to this class rebuild to add a missing edge to it. I have a version of this that is almost done for community view.
3.) The Marauder- this is a homebrew class I have used in my games for a while now that uses grit, favored enemies, and an injury system to inflict pain on his prey. I have but some thought into reworking it a bit to use maneuvers.
As for disciplines, well this is what I am really looking help for, as well what neat ideas you guys can come up with.
On my part I have a few ideas but need serious help fleshing them out.
1.)Thundering Bell- a sonic oriented discipline with the idea of using noise for distracting and deafening techniques.
2.)Phenric Will- the psionic discipline, intended for use with the halo knight. Supernatural in nature, this one would be based of the abilities of the aegis and soulknife, manifesting constructs of pure metal energy as the them of this style.
3.)Treachery- a dirty fighting discipline, with all sorts of tricks and deception involved to beat your opponent in an unfair fight.
4.)Another Ranged Discipline- I like Solar Wind but it feel weird that that only range emphasized discipline is a supernatural one focusing on fire. I'd love to here ideas for a new one that is a little more mundane.
5.)Monad's Might- a discipline along the lines of Black Seraph but oriented towards aeons, and cosmic balance instead of devils and pure evil.
I have a few ideas for maneuvers but not nearly enough to create full lists- I would greatly appreciate feedback and ideas to get these functioning.
Ideas, either for your own stuff or to help me?
Thank you all, I am getting a lot of great feedback. A three class gestalt would be a new and interesting take, and it might just prove to offer the customization I was hoping for.
As for magic I hadn't put much thought into which specific magic system to use but considering it I'll likely use the Spheres of Power beta system. It does a good job of recreating the Fable spells, at least in my opinion.
Thank you for the feedback but I do believe you and I are referring to two different Fables.
I am talking about the one that takes place in the land of Albion, where a human with ability to use Will (read as 'magic') defeated a group of three god-like beings called the Court. The human became known as the Archon, became immortal, a proceeded to have many children, grandchildren, and so one. These descendants become the Heroes of Albion following a age of crisis and over time their presence has waxed and waned.
In the first game, set in a very Feudal setting, Heroes wer everywhere thanks to a Guild that sponsored them and gave them training from a young age. In this one the last surviving member of the Court, Jack of Blades, resurfaces in an attempt to end the Archon's line and restore a very potent weapon called the Sword of Aeons.
In the second game, set long after the first and during a time of progress, you play one the last people with a lineage to the Archon; following the first game people blamed the Heroes as the source of the destruction that occurred (Jack had been pretending to be a Hero prior to the events of Fable, so most of the common people believed he was a normal Hero who went power hungry).
And in the third game you play the child of the second game's protagonist during a new industrial age. In this one your brother and acting king is a despot that you lead the revolt against only to learn a terrible secret: you're brother was an ass but only because of a great threat that was looming over the horizon. Through the game you go on an adventure similar to one your brother carried out and through it you meet a creature called the Crawler, something that may or may not be the embodiment of Darkness, and learn it decimated an exotic land some years ago and has the same goals in store for Albion. After dethroning your brother you have a choice- become the kind of king people want you to be and spoil them but in doing so not prepare them for a shadowy apocalypse. Or be a despot too to raise enough resources to combat the Crawler.
My Fable game will take place immediately after the events of the third with the PCs playing orphans from the Crawlers rampage across the land. Following sometime they come into contact with a old object that releases the dormant abilities of the Archon, making them a new generation of Heroes. The only think I can't decide is if mythic better represents this, or if gestalt all-in-all will create a closer feeling to the game for the players (again, most PCs in Fable end up being Jacks of All Trades, but NPC Heroes are almost always masters of either combat, magic, or cunning).
Hmm, not sure I agree that is the best approach. I personally only find a few of the classes in the ACG fun to play, and my players are likely to feel more distant from them then me (I have one player who's only ever played either a gunslinger, witch, or inquisitor, and he doesn't seem keen on changing).
I suppose the matter I face is this:
Gestalt- Players will be stronger and far more varied than the common folk, and will allow a better chance to mimic the customization of the franchise.
Mythic- Players will be far stronger than the common people and better represent the 'paragons' often seen in the Fable lore. In the games most of the powerful Hero NPCs are specialists in one field and Mythic would better represent this, as well as serve as a thematic source of 'this is why we are above mere mortals, hence the hero title'.
Only problem is I am not sure which to implement. I do feel though the ACG won't fill either role though, but thanks for the suggestion.
Quick question of opinion: if you were going to run a game set in the Fable universe and wanted PCs to be Heros with unique properties while NPCs use regular rules what would you do?
Use Mythic tiers or have the party gestalt? I feel conflicted on the issue. While that games have shown many Heroes are paragons of one discipline (Strength, Guile, or Will), I wonder if gestating will let my players let them create a more varied (and thus potent) character. Thoughts?
I have the PDF.
Over all I think it is wonderful. The World of Aden provides a neat magitech/steampunk setting with a whole new assortment of character options. Even if you don't want to make use of the setting itself the new classes, races, archetypes, feats, equipment, and rules (neat ones for vehicles).
I know this is why I got the PDF at first, however after reading into the setting can honestly say it stands out. Not because of the abundance of steampunk and guns- God, if I had a dollar for every time a 'original' setting came out with these highlights -but rather of the central conflict on Aden. The way I have come to understand it is that Aden is a world that has only recently come into contact with true evil; this isn't saying the world hasn't had it share of problems. Wars have raged across it and there have been barbarous races that have tried to leech off of civilization like ticks, however these things weren't truely evil in the D&D sense.
Violent and maybe pointless, yes, but not evil. No, Aden has just recently come into contact with real evil in an event called the Darkfall- a strange event that seemed to cause everyones' nightmares to manifest as real things and decimated the population. Basically those creatures in the Beastiary that are absolutely vile things? Fiends, evil fey, and aberrations? Things like those? They all showed up at once and Aden has never had to deal with things like those, a truely bitter task in a largely godless world (faith abounds but it is less the pantheon variety and more the philosophical path). The people that survive on Aden now strike back with magic and steel but who can say what will happen?
Basically it's like Ebberron's technology got lost in a world that smacked into Ravenloft; and it is glorious! Buy it now!
I suppose I understand. And taking more time to look into it I see there are more ranged options than I first recall (I'm playing a vizier until I can bring in my daevic so I usually get their Veils list mixed up with others). Still, I feel like the vizier will only be hampered by these drastic changes to it's hit die and BAB. It definitely has more staying power than a wizard, I can't deny that. However it's damage is not on par and versatility is still beaten out by a a true caster.
I'll give more feedback if you need it here, or do you need me to place it somewhere else. I'd look it up but there is a whole lot to sift through.
Just looking at this I have to ask what was with the massive nerfing to the Vizier? I can understand most of the Veil changes and the updates to the other classes but why the massive changes on the Vizier? With the Veils we have at the moment I worry that the Vizier will be at a huge disadvantage with such a low BAB and hit die. There are not many Veils with great range and I don't like the idea of such a squishy guys getting up so close. I cannot beg enough for you to maintain a 3/4 BAB and d8 hit die.
I'd be happy with any class but I would like to see a take on a Talented Summoner- the other existing classes I can imagine what'd you do with them. However I have no idea how you would create the Talented Summoner but I imagine I'd like what you'd make. Let's challenge him people- vote for the Talented Summoner.
Another good entry into the series; I not usually a fan of prestige classes so I was a little hesitant to make this purchase, as that seemed to be the focus of this entry. However I can say that I am not disappointed and i might very well have some prestige classes to play around with now.
Thank you, Little Goblin! Thank you for robbing me blind but leaving awesome trinkets in your wake.
[Rite Publishing] In the Company of Dragons Playtest Cover Preview (You know you want to play a dragon!)
I'm glad to hear you're making print versions; I'll need to grab myself a copy.
This setting is great and I can see the effort put into it was extensive. Leveling with you I normally hate the idea of steampunk: it usually feels tacked on to try and make a setting feel 'original', despite everything using it nowadays, and it often just comes off as a artificial addition (in a not awesome way). However Pure Steam doesn't give me that feeling- the steampunk fits Ullera naturally (in an ironic way I suppose). Keep up the good work.
[Rite Publishing] In the Company of Dragons Playtest Cover Preview (You know you want to play a dragon!)
so has anyone just use that AA classes as just normal classes? I haven't gotten The Sensitive yet but by description it looks like the psychic class I wanted as opposed to the psionic one I got
I do; I often use Enforcers and Toughs in my games, and I even ran an Investigator in a Carrion Crown/Midnight game who I modeled off of Rorschach.
I like, though stating them as aberrations may be a bit of an issue from the git go. Maybe something like humanoid(aberration), something I can definitely see as I recall illithids being parasitic reproduces, gaining some traits from their 'parent' race. So illithids from human, elf, dwarf, ect. stock would still be aberrant in nature but still possess many traits in common with with their parents.