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Jason Bulmahn Speaks for himself (4th Ed)


D&D 4th Edition (and Beyond)

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Benimoto wrote:
The ranger for example, had "Nimble Shot" where he'd shift one space and then make a normal attack,

Can you, or someone, tell me why this power is needed?

I mean, a one space shift is a move action and a normal attack is a standard action... So what does this power do for you?

I'd imagine it would allow you to keep your move action... But I want details please.

Qadira

CharlieRock wrote:

So what are you going to do? Dictate to the players what class they can and can't play?
"No guys, Tim won the roll off. He gets to be the Cleric. Everybody else has to pick other classes ... "

We did something similar in my group when 3E came out. I had the players write down their favorite class, their second favorite class, and the class they had no interest in playing. We looked them over and after a quick round of player to player diplomacy we had a group with all of the bases covered. It worked out really really well.


Cralius the Dark wrote:
A few people have compared 4E to a miniature game. Well, 3 and 3.5 rules were mini heavy so thats no big deal.

I never saw them as such. Maybe it is in the presentation. Having to convert distances and ranges to squares to facilitate mini use doesn't come off as mini heavy.

Having to convert squares to distance to facilitate "imaginative" play does.

Paizo Employee Lead Designer

Hi there all,

Thank you for not posting my blog here. I would prefer to keep it separate from my work. To that end, I will not answer questions here either. If I see something that warrants an addendum to my post, I will post it up on my blog.

Thanks and enjoy.

Jason Bulmahn
Gamer and Game Designer


crosswiredmind wrote:
CharlieRock wrote:

So what are you going to do? Dictate to the players what class they can and can't play?
"No guys, Tim won the roll off. He gets to be the Cleric. Everybody else has to pick other classes ... "

We did something similar in my group when 3E came out. I had the players write down their favorite class, their second favorite class, and the class they had no interest in playing. We looked them over and after a quick round of player to player diplomacy we had a group with all of the bases covered. It worked out really really well.

So really, with 4e needing no bases covered by a mix of classes, how can you stop players from making an all-cleric team?

D&D4 is the "we don't NEED any class to get along" D&D.

Osirion

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Pawns Subscriber
Disenchanter wrote:
Cralius the Dark wrote:
A few people have compared 4E to a miniature game. Well, 3 and 3.5 rules were mini heavy so thats no big deal.

I never saw them as such. Maybe it is in the presentation. Having to convert distances and ranges to squares to facilitate mini use doesn't come off as mini heavy.

Having to convert squares to distance to facilitate "imaginative" play does.

"mini heavy" might be a bit much. You're right, it is more in the presentation that 'nudges' you in the mini direction.

That said, our group ditched the squares and uses a ruler and common sense to figure out range, cover, etc.


Of course it is miniature-centric style gameplay. Hasbro is printing plastic money on round bases with those things.


CharlieRock wrote:


So what are you going to do? Dictate to the players what class they can and can't play?
"No guys, Tim won the roll off. He gets to be the Cleric. Everybody else has to pick other classes ... "

Not at all. I was just pointing out that the world would not be filled with first level clerics with unlimited ammo. The players can play an entire team of Clerics, but in doing so would absolutely represent something above and beyond the norm. And GM's should try to avoid creating kingdoms filled with first level Wizards and their unlimited MM. Because even a single Wizard should represent something special in any given fantasy world.

Sure NPC's could have levels...as blacksmiths, scribes, seers...but on the whole not PC classes. Every bar should not be owned by an ex adventurer with five levels of rogue, most should just be owned by...a bartender.


Jason Bulmahn wrote:

Hi there all,

Thank you for not posting my blog here. I would prefer to keep it separate from my work. To that end, I will not answer questions here either. If I see something that warrants an addendum to my post, I will post it up on my blog.

Thanks and enjoy.

Jason Bulmahn
Gamer and Game Designer

You bet.

Sorry if this thread is not what you would have hoped for.

EDIT: Jason commented on his LiveJournal that he doesn't object to this thread continuing on without him, bearing in mind what's he said above.

I thought I better mention that it's okay to continue.

Qadira

CharlieRock wrote:


So really, with 4e needing no bases covered by a mix of classes, how can you stop players from making an all-cleric team?
D&D4 is the "we don't NEED any class to get along" D&D.

My understanding is that you still need a variety of classes, hence the whole "role" thing.


crosswiredmind wrote:
CharlieRock wrote:


So really, with 4e needing no bases covered by a mix of classes, how can you stop players from making an all-cleric team?
D&D4 is the "we don't NEED any class to get along" D&D.
My understanding is that you still need a variety of classes, hence the whole "role" thing.

I must have missed that one in the brochure. I could have sworn they said that D&D4 would allow players to adventure without the "required" classes. The 'roles' were just so the players would know where to stand during a fight (in not so many words). Remeber the "we don't need rogues to find traps" previews? Or the "everybody will have some kind of reliable healing ability so we don't require a cleric anymore" bit?

Qadira

CharlieRock wrote:
crosswiredmind wrote:
CharlieRock wrote:


So really, with 4e needing no bases covered by a mix of classes, how can you stop players from making an all-cleric team?
D&D4 is the "we don't NEED any class to get along" D&D.
My understanding is that you still need a variety of classes, hence the whole "role" thing.
I must have missed that one in the brochure. I could have sworn they said that D&D4 would allow players to adventure without the "required" classes. The 'roles' were just so the players would know where to stand during a fight (in not so many words). Remeber the "we don't need rogues to find traps" previews? Or the "everybody will have some kind of reliable healing ability so we don't require a cleric anymore" bit?

Reliable healing does not mean that it will be good healing. Folks that played at D&D XP said that clerics were still critical and that healing surges could only delay the need to have a cleric heal them. Rogues will still excel at trap finding but they are no longer the only class that can even begin to find and counter a trap.

Just because classes are shifting slightly does not mean that roles are a thing of the past.

Cheliax

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Tales Subscriber
Aragura wrote:
CharlieRock wrote:


So what are you going to do? Dictate to the players what class they can and can't play?
"No guys, Tim won the roll off. He gets to be the Cleric. Everybody else has to pick other classes ... "

Not at all. I was just pointing out that the world would not be filled with first level clerics with unlimited ammo. The players can play an entire team of Clerics, but in doing so would absolutely represent something above and beyond the norm. And GM's should try to avoid creating kingdoms filled with first level Wizards and their unlimited MM. Because even a single Wizard should represent something special in any given fantasy world.

Sure NPC's could have levels...as blacksmiths, scribes, seers...but on the whole not PC classes. Every bar should not be owned by an ex adventurer with five levels of rogue, most should just be owned by...a bartender.

Aragura, that's just your take on the way clerics should be handled. The DM has the final say in his game, and since the situation you are describing is not in the RAW, then clerics can be as common, or uncommon, as a DM wishes.

Regarding 4E as a whole, I finally got a chance to read Jason's blog (thanks, Watcher!) and it further cemented me in the anti-4e crowd.

It seems that combat can get a little monotonous, as each monster had the same abilities, and each PC seemed to use the same action over and over again. I believe this was one of the "issues" 4e was supposed to "fix."

Couple that with how unlikely a PC will die in an encounter, and I remain unimpressed. The rationale from another poster that PCs can still die, just not usually by the attack that felled them, stands out as a glaring issue to me. It just doesn't jibe that I could be knocked out by a kobold's attack, but wouldn't die unless some area of effect spell or random boulder comes bouncing my way while I'm unconscious.

And don't even get me started on At Will ranged attacks with unlimited ammo. If I wanted to see that, I'd watch a few Lone Ranger serials on my DVD player.

4E may not be a bad system. Heck, it may be a lot of fun to play. But it doesn't "feel" like D&D to me. (Based on what I've read, it actually feels a lot like Confrontation, to be perfectly honest). I'm sure it has its place in the gaming community, just not at my game table.

In any case, 4e does not meet my expectations, and is not a game I would attempt to use for an ongoing campaign.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Mary Yamato wrote:

(And even though the powers are combat-oriented, Fay Step for example has obvious implications out of combat. How does eladrin society deal with this?)

This is what bothers me the most ... But if I can't reason about the gameworld, I can't use the system.

Isn't this the exact same problem 3e has? Blink Dogs have Dimension Door as a free action once every round, Trolls have Regeneration, Wraiths are insubstantial and can Create Spawn.

All of those would have vast implications on the way the world evolves. One wraith wandering into a small village on the outskirts of civilization should have an army of 100 wraiths within an hour. Trolls should kill virtually every non-troll within their hunting area (and then, presumably, starve).

This doesn't happen in the real world because we're nastier than 98% of the creatures on the face of the planet. In D&D, we aren't, yet the world is set up as if we were. Even if no one has any ranks in Heal, a reasonably wise character being aided has about a 25% change of curing a DC 20 disease. How are there any plagues in 3e D&D?


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Disenchanter wrote:
Benimoto wrote:
The ranger for example, had "Nimble Shot" where he'd shift one space and then make a normal attack,
I mean, a one space shift is a move action and a normal attack is a standard action... So what does this power do for you?

It is a standard action, which means 1) you can't use another standard action (like the "Careful Shot" which is +4 to hit over Nimble Shot) and 2) you keep your move action. It's great if the monsters get in your face, you can Careful Shot out of the way, shoot them, then move behind the meatshields. Assuming you're not fighting something that can take an AoO when you shift, of course.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8

Jason Bulmahn wrote:
More drinks were had, including some fine wine, and a great glass of cognac to wash it all down (I love desert liquor.. what a great concept).

I myself find desert liquor a bit dry for my tastes


Aragura wrote:


I was just pointing out that the world would not be filled with first level clerics with unlimited ammo. The players can play an entire team of Clerics, but in doing so would absolutely represent something above and beyond the norm. And GM's should try to avoid creating kingdoms filled with first level Wizards and their unlimited MM. Because even a single Wizard should represent something special in any given fantasy world.

Sure NPC's could have levels...as blacksmiths, scribes, seers...but on the whole not PC classes. Every bar should not be owned by an ex adventurer with five levels of rogue, most should just be owned by...a bartender.

The only problem is if 4e forces us to create a world where this is true. You have stated your preferred gsming style, with the PC's as heroes and that is fair enough. But many people prefer to create a world were first elvel PC's aren't anything special. I personal feel that the whole 'marked for greatness' thing really cheapens the the ffeling of achievement when the PC's do something. I mean once in a while its a pretty cool story hook but if every PC in every 4e game is already something special at 1st level then I think it will get tiring pretty quick.

My worry is that 4e won't be able to support this kind of humble hero in the same way. I'm not saying I want every town to have its own arch mage in it but I don't want my PC to be the biggest dog in town especially at 1st level. Still this is just my preference in playing style.


crosswiredmind wrote:

Reliable healing does not mean that it will be good healing. Folks that played at D&D XP said that clerics were still critical and that healing surges could only delay the need to have a cleric heal them. Rogues will still excel at trap finding but they are no longer the only class that can even begin to find and counter a trap.

Just because classes are shifting slightly does not mean that roles are a thing of the past.

What are you talking about?

Quote:


Rogue

"You look surprised to see me. If you’d been paying attention, you might still be alive."

CLASS TRAITS

Role: Striker. You dart in to attack, do massive damage, and then retreat to safety. You do best when teamed with a defender to flank enemies.
Power Source: Martial. Your talents depend on extensive training and constant practice, innate skill, and natural coordination.
Key Abilities: Dexterity, Strength, Charisma

Where does it say he is the trap-guru?

I read several previews to DDXP. I didn't see any of them mentioning traps. The Fearless article didn't mention them either. Most previews downplay the traps dealiness anyway.
And my point was if clerics are the only really needed class, why play any others? All your doing is reinforcing the opinion that a team full of Clerics would be overpowered.


crosswiredmind wrote:
CharlieRock wrote:
I'd wondered a while back that if a team of all clerics would seem indestructable. Or it would take a serious amount of damage (and overpowered encounters) to take them down.
I have a friend whose current 3.5 campaign is a group of clerics - all clerics - and they are kicking butt. So this may not be a 4E "problem".

The obvious example being "CoDzilla".

Lack of craft rules and non-combat abilities/spells bums me out, I hope the 4 PHB reveals this to just be a low level thing and not a game wide thing.

Qadira

CharlieRock wrote:


Where does it say he is the trap-guru?

I read several previews to DDXP. I didn't see any of them mentioning traps. The Fearless article didn't mention them either. Most previews downplay the traps dealiness anyway.
And my point was if clerics are the only really needed class, why play any others? All your doing is reinforcing the opinion that a team full of Clerics would be overpowered.

Rogues have Thievery as a class skill and according to the Wizards article that is the key to finding and beating traps. Rogues also have dungeoneering which seems to have something to do with traps as well.

Can other classes find and beat traps? Sure but according to WotC rogues can still be relied upon to fill that role.

Furthermore - I never said clerics were the only required class. You said that everyone can heal so why do we need clerics and folks here played at D&D XP and confirmed that healing is still best performed by a cleric and without one things can go horribly wrong.

I assume that other classes have similar centers of excellence that they perform better than any other class. Again, WotC based part of its 4E class design on the notion that each would fulfil a specific role that others would not.

4E is not a play-what-you-want-and-it-won't-matter kind of game.

Qadira

F33b wrote:
Lack of craft rules and non-combat abilities/spells bums me out, I hope the 4 PHB reveals this to just be a low level thing and not a game wide thing.

One of the WotC folks on these boards mentioned that there will be robust out-of-combat capabilities. I don't know what that looks like but they said it was in the PHB.

Cheliax

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Tales Subscriber
crosswiredmind wrote:


4E is not a play-what-you-want-and-it-won't-matter kind of game.

This is EXACTLY what 4e seems to be.

I believe one of the designers even said that 4E would allow a non-traditional party to function effectively in any situation.


Crosswiredmind:
I am given to understand that there are 3rd Edition parties that find traps by sticking someone with a ten foot pole out front and a lot of HP, and don't bother with a rogue. Unless 4E specifically disallows usage of 10 foot poles to trigger traps, it strikes me that there will be as little requirement for a rogue in some 4E parties as there would have been in their corresponding 3rd Edition/3.5 counterparts.
Perhaps even less need given that it has been reported that 'there are no Save or Die' effects in 4E, so rogues are no longer necessary to deal with those unpleasant traps which in earlier editions when triggered had the potential to cause an instant casualty, irrespective of Hit Points.

Edit:
The requirement outlined that 4E rogues work best when paired with a 'defender' (who I guess will usually have a 'hit you if you try to attack anyone else' ability) sounds to me as if Rogues in 4E may be being pushed into a niche, at least in terms of value and flexibility; I'm hoping that there will be at least some sort of 'sniper' role open to rogues in 4E, which in third edition/3.5 meant that Rogues had some non-flanking dependent attack options open (admittedly still paired with some sort of usually magical blinding/disabling effect), but I am concerned that that the 4E sniping option may have been concentrated on the Ranger class, given what has been reported from D & D XP.
But we will get an idea of the sort of options that there may be in the system core, when the first installment of the core rules come out in June/July.

Qadira

Larry Lichman wrote:
crosswiredmind wrote:


4E is not a play-what-you-want-and-it-won't-matter kind of game.

This is EXACTLY what 4e seems to be.

I believe one of the designers even said that 4E would allow a non-traditional party to function effectively in any situation.

I have not read anything that suggests a party can heal as well as they could if they have a cleric. In fact the whole discussion of roles indicates that a mix of defender, striker, controller, etc. is optimal. I have read that a party might be able to get by without having each of these roles filled but it may find the going difficult.

Qadira

Charles Evans 25 wrote:

Crosswiredmind:

I am given to understand that there are 3rd Edition parties that find traps by sticking someone with a ten foot pole out front and a lot of HP, and don't bother with a rogue. Unless 4E specifically disallows usage of 10 foot poles to trigger traps, it strikes me that there will be as little requirement for a rogue in some 4E parties as there would have been in their corresponding 3rd Edition/3.5 counterparts.
Perhaps even less need given that it has been reported that 'there are no Save or Die' effects in 4E, so rogues are no longer necessary to deal with those unpleasant traps which in earlier editions when triggered had the potential to cause an instant casualty, irrespective of Hit Points.

i do not think that there will be a need for a rogue but finding and beating traps will be easier with them than without them - same with 3.5.


Cheddar Bearer wrote:


The only problem is if 4e forces us to create a world where this is true. You have stated your preferred gsming style, with the PC's as heroes and that is fair enough. But many people prefer to create a world were first elvel PC's aren't anything special. I personal feel that the whole 'marked for greatness' thing really cheapens the the ffeling of achievement when the PC's do something. I mean once in a while its a pretty cool story hook but if every PC in every 4e game is already something special at 1st level then I think it will get tiring pretty quick.

My worry is that 4e won't be able to support this kind of humble hero in the same way. I'm not saying I want every town to have its own arch mage in it but I don't want my PC to be the biggest dog in town especially at 1st level. Still this is just my preference in playing style.

I think I have led the thread astray, I was only trying to point out a possible solution to an obvious hole in the new rules.

The obvious intent of the new 4E rules is to allow players to "continue on" the game without having to resort to heading back to town and resting a day by giving them access to a power that is flavored to their class that is usable all the time. Gamers seem to want to plow through a story in one go, rather than exploring tentatively. Which is fine, but the old 3.5 does not support the new mentality well. So now everyone is being given shinny powers to allow them to go non stop.

The real question, which we all seem to be waiting on the release of the books to answer, is did they pull it off. Or as we are now speculating, cause an unfortunate loophole where everyone will be a cleric or wizard. And the world will be full of people who can heal themselves at the drop of a hat. And level 10 heroes will be slaughtered by the evil tyrants cadre of 20 level 1 wizards that blasts him to bits with their MM's.


Larry Lichman wrote:
Couple that with how unlikely a PC will die in an encounter, and I remain unimpressed. The rationale from another poster that PCs can still die, just not usually by the attack that felled them, stands out as a glaring issue to me. It just doesn't jibe that I could be knocked out by a kobold's attack, but wouldn't die unless some area of effect spell or random boulder comes bouncing my way while I'm unconscious.

On the other hand, look what we were fighting. Kobolds rarely struck the fear of death into characters in any edition without using their traps or combined forces. With almost any of the characters, maximum damage from any of the tougher stuff could easily take them from 1/4 of their HP to dead in one solid hit. Plus, like I said, I saw 3 deaths and a TPK in two adventures. How brutal of a system were you hoping for?


Larry Lichman wrote:
crosswiredmind wrote:


4E is not a play-what-you-want-and-it-won't-matter kind of game.

This is EXACTLY what 4e seems to be.

I believe one of the designers even said that 4E would allow a non-traditional party to function effectively in any situation.

I know that the developers have said that a party composed of all martial characters would be as viable as a party composed of a mixture of roles with different power sources.


Disenchanter wrote:
Benimoto wrote:
The ranger for example, had "Nimble Shot" where he'd shift one space and then make a normal attack,

Can you, or someone, tell me why this power is needed?

I mean, a one space shift is a move action and a normal attack is a standard action... So what does this power do for you?

I'd imagine it would allow you to keep your move action... But I want details please.

Like CNB said, it allowed you to do stuff like shift away from an enemy, shoot, and then move away. Or, I suppose you could use it to squeeze one more square out of your movement.

The time I used it in the playtest was against some kobold "defender" types that had an ability to shift with a character the first time they shifted away. So, as the ranger, I shifted first, then they shifted with me, so then I used the nimble shot ability.

So I don't know, it just gave a little more versatility to the ranger in certain situations without making him uber at 1st level. It seemed okay.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

From what I've heard form this weekend (especially thanks to great reports from Jason and others) and especially after seeing the rather anemic list of wizard powers from the 2 page spread preview, I think I can best articulate my current feelings toward 4e as "the rules sound great, but the classes don't".

Hopefully seeing the full rules will help alleviate those feelings, and most of my worry is because these were 1st level characters after all, but I had been sliding into a full 4e convert until I saw the details on the classes. I'm not sure how much you can separate the rules (including skill and save advancements and such) from the classes and their features, but one side of that really excites me and the other side seems quite a let down.

Maybe that means I can retrofit some of the rule aspects into my 3.5 games and be happy with that. Or maybe I'd prefer reworked classes under 4e. I don't know without seeing the full rules, but that's where I am now.

Personally, I'm one of those people who isn't overwhelmed by hundreds of spell choices at each level (and the majority of the best ones NOT just damage dealing), and instead loves that aspect of the game. Vancian casting or spontaneous casting, whatever. But seeing what these characters had available, and especially that disheartening two page spread of wizard spells, these classes just don't seem nearly as inspiring to me.

The best analogy I can think of is Mutants and Masterminds, where powers are like "You can blast someone for X damage. You decide whether it is fire, electricity, etc. and whether it is a mutant power, some technology, etc." In M&M, it works since there is such massive variety in superhero concepts (and massive variety of powers available). With 4e, it is sounding like every class typically has +X to hit and Y damage. With fighters, it's melee weapon damage. For rangers it's ranged. For wizards, it's from a spell, etc.

It may be balanced "perfectly", but if each class within a role does the same fundamental thing with different labels, and even between roles each class has pretty much the same attack roll for the same damage, then a lot of fun and variety seems to have been balanced out of the game.

Of course, this is just based on preview info, and may change with the full ruleset. But it was a bit of a rollercoaster as reports from early in D&DXP had me rethinking my summer campaign plans so we could go 4e sooner rather than later, then reports and previews only a couple days later making me wonder if I would ever convert at all.


Shroomy wrote:
Larry Lichman wrote:
crosswiredmind wrote:


4E is not a play-what-you-want-and-it-won't-matter kind of game.

This is EXACTLY what 4e seems to be.

I believe one of the designers even said that 4E would allow a non-traditional party to function effectively in any situation.

I know that the developers have said that a party composed of all martial characters would be as viable as a party composed of a mixture of roles with different power sources.

I think the key there is the martial party in question would have nearly every role covered (the only role that doesn't have a martial class would be the Controller). By categorizing classes into roles, you can lessen the "we need a Cleric" of 3.5.

So, in some ways, the NEED for a class X or Y is lessened. But the NEED for certain roles no doubt remains. I expect an all Cleric (or Warlord!) party would have trouble doing enough damage (or soaking enough damage) as the levels go up, but (as with pretty much everything here) it is just speculation until the books hit the shelves.

Cheers! :)


I did not take time to read all the prior comments, but want to say that this is the first thing I read that made me want to stick with 3.5. No spells at all? Forget it.

Qadira

Tsulis wrote:
I did not take time to read all the prior comments, but want to say that this is the first thing I read that made me want to stick with 3.5. No spells at all? Forget it.

There are spells. What leads you to say that there are none in 4E?


Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
crosswiredmind wrote:
CharlieRock wrote:
I'd wondered a while back that if a team of all clerics would seem indestructable. Or it would take a serious amount of damage (and overpowered encounters) to take them down.
I have a friend whose current 3.5 campaign is a group of clerics - all clerics - and they are kicking butt. So this may not be a 4E "problem".

A party of all 3.5 clerics is extremely vulnerable to Ref save effects. Clerics are the strongest class in the PHB, by most standards, but they are weak in some situations.

Cheliax Contributor

crosswiredmind wrote:
Tsulis wrote:
I did not take time to read all the prior comments, but want to say that this is the first thing I read that made me want to stick with 3.5. No spells at all? Forget it.
There are spells. What leads you to say that there are none in 4E?

There are spells in name only, from what Jason was telling us. They are no different from the fighter's abilities or the rogue's abilities.

Cheliax

Mike McArtor wrote:
crosswiredmind wrote:
Tsulis wrote:
I did not take time to read all the prior comments, but want to say that this is the first thing I read that made me want to stick with 3.5. No spells at all? Forget it.
There are spells. What leads you to say that there are none in 4E?
There are spells in name only, from what Jason was telling us. They are no different from the fighter's abilities or the rogue's abilities.

How magical. That's sure to evoke a sense of wonder in my group. }; P

Cheliax

Dragonchess Player wrote:
crosswiredmind wrote:
CharlieRock wrote:
I'd wondered a while back that if a team of all clerics would seem indestructable. Or it would take a serious amount of damage (and overpowered encounters) to take them down.
I have a friend whose current 3.5 campaign is a group of clerics - all clerics - and they are kicking butt. So this may not be a 4E "problem".
A party of all 3.5 clerics is extremely vulnerable to Ref save effects. Clerics are the strongest class in the PHB, by most standards, but they are weak in some situations.

So you have to wear something or cast something to buff your Ref save. Shouldn't be too hard.


Mike McArtor wrote:
There are spells in name only, from what Jason was telling us. They are no different from the fighter's abilities or the rogue's abilities.

Having take a look a the 6 pre-generated characters, I am having trouble too understand why spells are not spells anymore regarding to Jason... Are spells must necessarly be Vancian magic? Or does he feel that other class having abilities at each level that are balance with the relative power of a wizard of the same level is a bad thing? A magic missile or a sleep spells are still spells that no other roles will be able to emulate with 'normal' abilities.... Magic missile and sneak attack are both abilities that are dealing or increasing damage... only one of them is magical... having rogue or fighter performing stunts doesn't make those abilities magical... the source of the abilities define the rules and the possibilities of each class... and I guess that Wizards and Clerics spells will look a lot differents and more powerful than fighter or rogue manoeuvers at higher level... else Wizard should get the same BAB and hits points than the fighter...


Ken Marable wrote:


The best analogy I can think of is Mutants and Masterminds, where powers are like "You can blast someone for X damage. You decide whether it is fire, electricity, etc. and whether it is a mutant power, some technology, etc." In M&M, it works since there is such massive variety in superhero concepts (and massive variety of powers available). With 4e, it is sounding like every class typically has +X to hit and Y damage. With fighters, it's melee weapon damage. For rangers it's ranged. For wizards, it's from a spell, etc.

I don't see this problem. I went back and re-read the powers, and while the offensive powers are based on the same core mechanic (with differentiation for the stat used to attack, implement, range, energy type, power type, etc.), almost every one had a different additional effect that made them distinct.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Mike McArtor wrote:
There are spells in name only, from what Jason was telling us. They are no different from the fighter's abilities or the rogue's abilities.

That's no different than the (Ex) (Sp) (Su) distinction in 3.5. I mean, my dervish can, once a day for 5 rounds, move while taking a full attack action. Hellcats are non-magically invisible in light. And it's somewhat difficult to understand how marshal auras work when they're not magic.

If anything, it looks like they slightly dialed back the combat options for spellcasters, and greatly increased the combat options for non-spellcasters. We'll see if ritual casting preserves the versatility of spellcasters outside of combat; as for the rest of it it's just flavor text, isn't it?


There's a lot about the "spells" that are unclear to me.

No, I don't think spells have to be Vancian.

However, to be DnD- there has to be some flexibility in your spell array. I don't object to a minor attack power that you always have access to- that does make it feel like it looks in popular media.

But can I swap out different "spells" in 4th edition? Do I have utility spells like "Rope Trick" and "Grease"?

I assume as I increase in level that I get new "spells" with that new level, but do I get more lower level "spells" as well?

*******

You see, I kinda like how they've eliminated Vancian magic with the "at will", "once per encounter, "once per day"...

But does that come at the price of customability and flexibility?

(I actually don't know, so feel free to tell me)


They kept a vestige of the Vancian system in the wizard's daily powers. It apparently comes from a spell book and you need to select them each day.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
etrigan wrote:
... and I guess that Wizards and Clerics spells will look a lot differents and more powerful than fighter or rogue manoeuvers at higher level...

I kind of doubt that; one of the goals is to balance all the classes against one another. It was actually one of the problems with 3.5, where wizards suck until level 5, and just own everything after level 11. Rogues and fighters do the best in combat at level 1, but severely fall off after about level 10. That's one of the things that contributes to the "sweet spot" in 3.5, because around levels 5-10 all of the classes are contributing without overshadowing any of the others. Even so, I challenge anyone to show me a Rogue 20 build that's anywhere near as powerful as a Rogue 1/Wizard 19 build.

Of course, the scaling of wizard power was actually a design decision inherited from 1e, where just surviving was how you "earned" the ability to cast powerful spells. Of course, in 1e, once you died you were supposed to reroll, so I wouldn't take that as a good model.

I suspect the fighter and rogue abilities in 4e are going to involve a lot of moving around the battlefield and getting in peoples faces, with rogues dealing massive amounts of damage then getting out of the way, and fighters locking people down (that's probably where the trip and disarm feats went). Wizards are going to have more distance and group effects. In other words, they're going to feel different, even though the power level will be comparable.


I have to hand it to you CNB.

Your tenaciousness makes me want to get 4th Edition, not to replace DnD, but for light easy fun games.

Sczarni

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Maps, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
CNB wrote:


All of those would have vast implications on the way the world evolves. One wraith wandering into a small village on the outskirts of civilization should have an army of 100 wraiths within an hour. Trolls should kill virtually every non-troll within their hunting area (and then, presumably, starve).

Spoiler:
that exact thing happens in 'the cahmpion's belt' adventure in the age of worms adventrue path -- if the characters don't kill the big enraged zombie worm in x rounds, all the 1000 spectators become wraiths and the pcs can expect to fight their way through 25000 wraiths to get out of the city

Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Watcher wrote:

However, to be DnD- there has to be some flexibility in your spell array. I don't object to a minor attack power that you always have access to- that does make it feel like it looks in popular media.

But can I swap out different "spells" in 4th edition? Do I have utility spells like "Rope Trick" and "Grease"?

Well, the wizard released at DDXP had two "daily" spells--Acid Arrow, and Sleep--and got to choose one at the beginning of the day. I assume as they level up they'll have similar options, possibly even extending to their encounter and at-will powers. It could even be that you can choose a daily power at level 1 to be an encounter power at level 5, and "at will" at level 9.

Rope Trick is going to be a ritual, though. I'm sure Grease is in, though--it's a perfect fit for a controller class, and it's dead simple to write rules for (1 square burst within 10, all creatures must immediately save or fall prone, all squares are now considered difficult terrain and anyone not standing in it has combat advantage over anyone standing in it).


Mike McArtor wrote:
There are spells in name only, from what Jason was telling us. They are no different from the fighter's abilities or the rogue's abilities.

So, you're saying that because it's a consistent power mechanic instead of completely separately rules for entire groups of classes, that it's no longer a spell, despite obviously magical effects (like an illusion, light, or missiles of arcane force springing from your fingertips)?

Osirion

bwmathis wrote:
Mike McArtor wrote:
There are spells in name only, from what Jason was telling us. They are no different from the fighter's abilities or the rogue's abilities.
So, you're saying that because it's a consistent power mechanic instead of completely separately rules for entire groups of classes, that it's no longer a spell, despite obviously magical effects (like an illusion, light, or missiles of arcane force springing from your fingertips)?

well to me it doesnt feel like spells they feel like magic ablitys but not something i invoke ,not a combination of arcan gestures and words not a complex formula for unleshing power. just spell like abilitys like a beholders or a mind flayers . so no they dont "feel" like spells to me

Qadira

Mike McArtor wrote:
crosswiredmind wrote:
Tsulis wrote:
I did not take time to read all the prior comments, but want to say that this is the first thing I read that made me want to stick with 3.5. No spells at all? Forget it.
There are spells. What leads you to say that there are none in 4E?
There are spells in name only, from what Jason was telling us. They are no different from the fighter's abilities or the rogue's abilities.

Except that they look act and read like spells. The powers on the other characters do not look act or read like spells.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Watcher wrote:
Your tenaciousness makes me want to get 4th Edition, not to replace DnD, but for light easy fun games.

I'm glad at least someone's paying attention to me. I seem to have caught the same DDXP plague everyone else did, so propping myself in front of a computer for a couple hours is all I can manage between naps and Tang.

As I've said elsewhere, what was previewed at DDXP was a good tactical combat simulator. A very good tactical combat simulator. It's worlds better than the D&D minis game, and I've never been interested in the minis game. It's fast, the rules are clear and concise, and everyone has a unique role to play. The reason virtually everyone got smoked on the black dragon was because most groups didn't jell--if you were smart and had the paladin and the fighter keeping the dragon locked down, the cleric helping boost the AC of the tanks, the warlock keeping a curse up, and the ranger dealing damage, you had a decent shot of taking it down. Of course, decent in this case means 10%, but you would have acquitted yourself better than my party, which was headed well into TPK by the third round.

What we haven't seen is anything except the combat. If the "extended skill checks" work, and if the rituals and the rules for milestones and the fluff works then you'll have a solid role-playing game. We simply haven't seen enough to know if that's true, and it's ridiculous to argue 4e sucks just because we haven't.

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