I do, but I prefer the Sorcerer method. Sleep, color spray, ghoul touch, hold x, are all save-or-die spells when I've got a longspear. Spells which directly inflict death are also on the menu, as are spells which deal damage and some which have noncombat use. But a 1st level spell with a 15' cone of save or die (for creatures of 2 HD or less, 3d8-3 damage from a CDG is still probably dead, those that survive might still fail their fort save.)
Granted, it's a save-or-die that takes a full-round action to make it official, but Suffocation, Mass doesn't instantly kill, either.
It's also worth noting that a lot of the SoD spells from Pathfinder are limited in terms of valid targets, but that PCs are typically fully vulnerable.
I think I'm being misinterpreted. I don't care IF save-or-die abilities are unbalanced. They can be made over or underpowered by other means.
I object to putting an entire fight on one random element. A necromancer with an army could easily be balanced against a fighter with supreme cleave, or a wizard with Acid Fog. Or a siege engineer with a trebuchet. Or a banker with a company of mercenaries. Balance isn't about concepts, it's about numbers, and those numbers can be any value desired.
I object to the concept of "A large portion of this fight will be determined by one random chance."; that is a very distinct concept from "If these players both play perfectly, or with similar levels of skill, they start with an equal chance of winning."
I would also like to point out that, if Ambar of Kotu is coming around to my shop, and buying Widgets in bulk from me at a price that allows him to resell them to Probitas for 5 gold each, it's really not in my best interest to turn around and sell a Widget directly to Probitas for less than 5 gold. I might make a marginally better profit on that single Widget, but I'm also likely to lose the sustained business I've been doing with Probitas.
I wouldn't look at it as 'selling 100 widgets at about 3 gold each'. I'd look at it as 'selling 100 widgets of total material cost 100 GP and time cost 105 minutes for 310GP, or 2 GP profit per minute.' and compare that to 'selling 1 widget of material cost 1 GP and time cost 6 minutes for 13GP, or 2 GP profit per minute.' (Assuming that a widget takes 1 GP to make, and a sale takes 5 minutes total time- a rather extreme example used to make a point.)
If the merchant can take those 100 widgets and get them to his store and ready for sale in an hour, and sell them all for 5 GP in a month with prorated retail expenses of 70GP, he is making exactly as much as the creator. (60 minutes of labor, 380GP costs, 500GP income, for 2 gp/minute). The creator can't do his own retail, because the shop sells more than just widgets, and the fixed costs of running the shop are prorated among all the goods sold. The market for widgets isn't big enough for one store that sells thousands of widgets each month, owned by a co-op of widget makers.
Check the blog again: Player-controlled hexes, if there are such a thing, won't be kingdoms.
The highest level of social organization is the player kingdom. These are created when two or more player settlements agree to bind themselves together to create a single political entity.
Either there can be multiple settlements in a hex, in which case a kingdom can be smaller than a hex, or there cannot, in which case a kingdom must span multiple hexes. I think 'at most one settlement per hex' or 'settlements must have n nonsettlement hexes between them' are both good rules, depending on exactly how much territory a hex actually is.
If I face a horde of undead that will surely defeat me, there remains the chance that I will take some of them with me before I join them. Given that, I can be victorious even if I am killed, if I can inflict casualties that cannot be restored.
If, on the other hand, I have a 40% chance of dying instantly in the first round, a 40% chance of dying in the second round, provided I participate in the second round, and win if I close to melee distance, there is no territory between 'flawless victory' and 'hopeless defeat'.
Stunned is quite a bit different from asleep, 'unable to attack' is different from helpless, and a feat which requires BaB of +16 or better is not available at the same time as first-level spellcasting. Stunning Assault is roughly equal to Power Word Stun, so "Goodnight everybody" would be the feat for level 1 rogues that applies nonlethal sneak attack damage to everybody within range, in order to be roughly equivalent to Sleep?
I was saying that dragon's aren't pets, and aren't mounts in the same sense that horses or even griffons can be.
You can't rent a dragon large enough to carry a person in combat. You just might be able to convince such a dragon that your interests coincide enough to cooperate for a time, but that makes such a dragon an ally, not a mount or pet.
Regular humanoids, on the other hand, can become loyal members of an army who may or may not be willing to die by following orders.
What's the rogue ability equivalent to 'hold person' 'ghoul touch' or 'sleep'? "Qualifying target must save or become helpless" is such a powerful effect at all tiers that it would have to be as difficult to acquire as other instant-kill abilities. If you don't mind a rogue getting an automatic critical ranged sneak attack repeatedly, then you can have a "kill" spell at that point.
Why not force the defenders set the time when they are vulnerable, within a window defined by the attackers? Or make the siege engines take a long time to construct, during which time the attackers have to continuously defend the siege from sortie?
There are lots of options that don't make destroying a settlement easy or quick, even for large groups. -Raiding- a settlement, on the other hand, should be something which can be done without notice; perhaps base the rewards for a raid on the number or percentage of members or officers of the target which are online at the start of the raid. (The goal would be to cause all of the members to be occupied elsewhere and raid their base, or to cause a significant number of them to abandon their action elsewhere to defend their homes.)
More on the matter of maps. Adventuring, exploration and mapping all go together. Could we not have a skill which will allow players to produce in-game maps, both for their own use and for sale to other players? The Cartography skill could have several ranks, allowing the production of increasingly detailed maps. Apart from anything else, this would provide a useful money-making skill for adventuring types, who normally don't have much in the way of productive crafting skills.
This, plus require the creation and duplication of maps to require parchment and ink and time in addition to travel. High-quality maps should be nontrival to create, and have some expense to distribute.
I actually still think there's room for a single character to swoop in riding a powerful dragon if it took a significant number of players a significant amount of time to unlock it, and then would only last a limited amount of time.
You mean a dragon raiding a settlement along with its PC minion, right?
Of course, in such a scenario there would be no advantage to someone else not knowing your name- they can just mark you as an enemy, and you will always show up that way.
Constructs, especially colossal constructs, should have a combination of a very large price tag and a specific weakness due to material type; iron golems are stopped and eventually destroyed by rust effects, wood constructions become animated firewood, and other thematically appropriate effects. The balance side would have their upkeep be lowered somewhat, but their construction cost per unit effectiveness would be much higher: A 1,000,000 GP golem that needs only 100 GP a month in maintenance might be a match for a mercenary company that costs 10,000 GP every month that it is in use, or an undead army that costs 100,000 GP to raise and 1,000 GP every month to feed and maintain.
I think that characters should belong to only one settlement, but that organizations should be able to have buildings in multiple settlements, under the conditions defined by the settlement.
A character should certainly be able to be a member of a chartered company (or companies?) and a settlement, but he can only homestead in one place.
I might hedge my bets, and play two mains. I figure that at least part of the business plan involved being able to develop new skills and abilities a few steps ahead of the players, so the capstone abilities will be introduced in order to make the characters who get them somewhat, but not too much, cooler than the characters who did not have the limits growing up.
I know what the movement other than dice rolls is, and I know what properties are more likely to be hit in the next few turns. In the short term, I might take a very large risk by mortgaging properties less likely to be hit in order to develop the properties more likely to be hit. If I judge the costs, risks, and benefits of that tactic wisely, I will on average come out ahead. In the larger scheme, I need to be able to determine what a property is worth to me, and what it is worth to deny that property to others. I need to do this in a game where the value of cash is also variable. That's a lot of decisions which effect the outcome, and making those decisions in such a manner as to win IS skill.
I don't have a problem with there being some random elements. I have a problem with the result of the game being a single random element.
Arbalester, you are mistaken. In SWG if you wanted to buy or sell something not available within the limits of the bazaar, you went to Corelia and shouted outside the spaceport until you got an interested person.
In terms of scale, consider that the goal for PFO is to be a tiny fraction of the size of the current big boys. Considering also the sheer scale of what is suggested (it looks like an intermediate goal is to have the entire River Kingdoms part of the game world, and you can walk across every acre.)
I would love to see someone try 24/7 botting against people willing to get bounties. After a little observation, the bandits will learn roughly when the botter unloads. About an hour before that point, the bandits swoop in, drops the botter in a few seconds, and get killed by the guards. Their accomplice slips in and loots the botter's corpse and gets a percentage of the entire day or week's worth of gathering.
If the botter tries to put a bounty on the bandits for that, the bandits turn themselves in to the authorized agents, repeatedly. Everyone knows, or can see for themselves, that the botter is a botter, so they collect and split the bounty repeatedly, or just refuse to collect the bounty.
Probitas: If PvP cannot be fair because it is different, than PvE cannot be fair for exactly the same reason.
Imagine a game of Monopoly which has the normal rules and one addition: Whenever someone rolls a 12, they win, and whenever someone rolls a 2, they go bankrupt.
Strictly speaking, it remains as fair a game as it was before. It becomes a lot less fun, however, and loses most of the strategic elements in favor of becoming "who randomly wins and loses?"
There does NOT need to be a superficial element to getting a pet. It is entirely possible to say "You need to cast this spell, with this rare and expensive component on a corpse to get a skeleton."
Then the rarity of that component can be compared to the rarity of the resources needed for other things which provide benefits.
There is no need to assume that the economy will not have scarcity.
A heavy axle rail car has a max gross weight of 315,000 lbs; if a train has can carry only ten of those (very conservative) it needs to drag 3.15m pounds under -very- favorable circumstances. I'll give it twice the capacity of 'favorable' circumstances, for 20x "lift off ground.
Got a magic item or extraordinary ability that gives +43 to CMD? Then you can stop a train, some of the time.
I read that as "Groups larger than some arbitrary size will be unsupported."
That means that "A couple of dozen" is the absolute largest that 'groups' will ever be. Not the smallest, but the largest.
Is the rollout of player settlements going to be a hard rollout, or a soft one? Is everyone going to get the ability to form a settlement in the same patch, or will there be skill and resource requirements that simply take months to acquire?
Getting hit by a train isn't an attack against AC.
It's an extraordinary effect that allows a reflex save to negate. Your +5 shield does nothing to it, but your boots of reflexes help you jump out of the way.
The giant swinging a club typically is an attack against AC, so your shield can stop or deflect it. If it's a bull rush attempt, I don't think your shield helps you, but other things might.
Strictly speaking, +5 shield means "grants a +5 bonus to shield AC", which makes attacks against AC more likely to have no effect. Attacks which miss have no effect because they miss; kinetics doesn't apply in the absence of magic or giants, so why should it apply in their presence?
I'm going to point out that virtually every adaptation of D&D for a CRPG has either eliminated the save-or-die spells, or made them always fail versus important characters.
Save-or-die also has a lot of different meanings: I include everything from color spray to hold monster to phantasmal killer in that category; if it can make someone go from maximum condition to helpless in one go, it isn't fun for anybody else.
Save-or-be-stunned-for-a-bit, or save-or-be-knocked-back-really-far, on the other hand, would be good things to implement. 'Greater Command "drop"' can be a much more effective spell than 'slay living', even though it doesn't do any damage directly.
Ryan Dancey wrote:
Replace "are supposed to be doing" with "have indicated that you want to do"; the sandbox should tell you what the tools are, and indicate some way of how they were intended to be used. The sandbox should not indicate that the intended use of the tools is the only one. If I want to play as a naturalist observing creatures in their natural habitat (or some role which the designers didn't put in mechanics for), and just find and hide out around wild creatures, I should be able to turn off the 'tell me what to do' messages and play a different game than everyone else. Whether one has fun playing Jane Goodall is a different matter entirely than whether one is 'supposed to' play that way.
Ryan Dancey wrote:
There will also be a lot of guilds that don't demand exclusive membership. Churches and trade organizations won't need or expect the same level of dedication from all of their members as those guilds which demand that members have only one character.
Please, let the guilds determine what the qualifications for entry are, not the middleware vendor...
If it can be exchanged for goods and/or services, it is money. I would like it to be handled in-game, rather than having to have a guild officer go to the guild website and log each transaction as it comes; far simpler to have a guild accountant set the rates for buying and selling, or approve a buy or sell request from within the in-game guild interface.
If it is already handled in-game, why not allow transactions between unaffiliated players? If a mining guild has promised that their script will always be redeemable for ore at the mines (either at a fixed rate or at a floating rate), that script goes from fiat currency to a backed currency. Other players can then use a backed currency as a medium of exchange- and if the rates and volume is high enough, a merchant will start offering to buy that script for gold in town, exchange the script for ore at the mine, transport the ore back to town and sell the ore for gold at a greater profit.
It does require that merchants who wish to engage in such trade keep track of the various guild scripts, their value, and the creditworthiness of each guild. A guild which took advantage of that system by printing loads of script and unloading it before the market adjusted would make a quick buck, but would be utterly annihilated once the merchants collectively announced that whoever did damage to the rogue traders would be given favorable rates on all products, in proportion to the damage documented.
I love the idea of 'guild script', but only if a guild can buy and sell that script for coinage as well as merchandise/resources.
People who hold it do run the risk of the guild going bankrupt, and leaving them with paper valuable only to collectors.
I like the idea of counterfeiting said script being possible, but I can't figure out any way to make counterfeiting possible without it making the script worthless; the primary deterrent in reality is the threat of imprisonment, or in some cases execution, but I don't think that deleting a character for being the second-best counterfeiter is appropriate.
Ah. WoW has items with a specific type of icon, which are only usable to sell to NPC merchants for a pittance. The term there is 'vendor trash'. Anything that can be broken down to crafting materials is 'resources'.
That's the terminology I thought you were using; sorry for not making sure you were saying what I was hearing.
It's not "You cannot cast spells with verbal components" or "you suffer penalties" or "you must make a check". Silence affects the spell, just like dispel magic would affect the spell.
I'm still mixed on "if I am in an area affected by silence during the casting of a spell with a verbal component, is it effected or not"- I don't see a rule describing at what moment a spell is cast (transitive verb).
What's this talk of "vendor items"? Why are we assuming that the mechanics of WoW are the norm?
There exists gold, proxies for gold, items which are useful, and items which can be made info useful items; 'vendor trash' is really just 'gold' with an added inventory minigame.
Some usable equipment should be available directly from adventuring. Customized equipment should be available from crafting. Want a weapon? Raid a tomb. Want a +3 undead bane holy flaming scimitar? Gather the eyes of a lich, tears of a salamander, and a feather of an angel along with some steel and precious gemstones and convince a swordsmith to make one for you.
By analogy, spell resistance:
Spell resistance has no effect unless the energy created or released by the spell actually goes to work on the resistant creature's mind or body. If the spell acts on anything else and the creature is affected as a consequence, no roll is required. Spell-resistant creatures can be harmed by a spell when they are not being directly affected.
Upon the casting of this spell, complete silence prevails in the affected area. All sound is stopped: Conversation is impossible, spells with verbal components cannot be cast, and no noise whatsoever issues from, enters, or passes through the area. (Emphasis added)
Silence does not effect creatures in the area; it affects sound, conversation, spells with verbal components, and the area.
You, objects in your possession, and magic objects that emit sound, when targeted by silence, get a saving throw and spell resistance to negate the spell. If you, your attended items, or your magic items that emit sound are not targeted by silence, you are not affected by silence- sound, conversation, spells with verbal components, and the area are the ONLY things that are directly affected.
Quick, Ryan made a post! Everybody dogpile him with questions far too specific to be answered at this stage of development!
What about oversized pauldrons? Are we going to have armor which significantly reduces peripheral vision for no apparent benefit other than intimidating style? Will our heads, nay our horses' heads look like insignificant specks next to the massive pieces of steel which adorn and protect our shoulders? Will our armor check penalties to stealth be purely because the plates which themselves cover a joint between other plates are visible from low orbit?
A CN character who is being oppressed by a LN society might very well "intentionally disrupt organizations as part of a campaign of anarchy", motivated solely by enlightened self-interest.
Evil characters typically aren't 'kick the dog' types. That's Bioware Evil (tm). Evil characters control an empire through fear and terror, but also make sure the trains run on time and that violent crime is the exclusive turf of the secret police.
With all due respect, in the best possible outcome, one of those would be the game server, toward which all meaningful development time was spent, and the other would be the ghetto server, which is like the game server except with one arbitrary and untested rule change. In the next best outcome, development resources are wasted trying to make the two types of play equally good, making compromises that degrade the quality of the game. In the worst possible outcome, development resources are split between the two concepts, and equally good games are developed on both sides of the fork.
The hitch is that development time and money are limited, and spending time on anything other than the project means not spending that time on the project.
EDIT: To clarify, the only change that could increase the development time (time until release) would be more money. More money to the tune of the total operating costs of Goblinworks for the time period involved. I have no idea how much that is, but I would guess it to be in the realm of $100k USD per month.
I'm all for some system where rare components are consumed in the creation of magical items, and at least some of those rare components should be parts of dangerous creatures.
To some degree, I would like to see a dragon have a lot of dragon scales, but only one set of organs. Damaged scales would be plentiful, and have many uses, while pristine scales would be rare, and make better versions of the same thing. The lightning glands of a blue dragon, however, would have to be undamaged by combat and also removed by an expert in such things, then preserved without delay (don't just stick it next to the ore chunks for a month).
Lots of cheap 'Chipped blue dragonscale pendants' could be made for every sword of shocking burst that way.