How do you think about Vitality / Wound Points?


Alpha Release 3 General Discussion

1 to 50 of 63 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | next > last >>

Ok, I wonder what you all think about the Vitality/Wound point system.
I found it quite interesting, because they actually make it "understandable" what "Hitpoints" are and give players a faster healing progression so they don't need a priest THAT much.

Wait, is it OGL?

PRO:
- better understanding
- faster healing w/o priests

CON:
- Two pools to remember

NEUTRAL
- lucky hits more deadly
- no non-lethal damage (but I would reintroduce them once all vitality points are used up: critical hit with a sap, *bumm*, victim unconcious)


No. Good god no.

Vitality/Wound Points do nothing but make it easier for the player characters to die, add complexity to combat (which is complex enough), and require me as GM to spend extra time when making my notes for every monster they'll fight.


I like the vitality/wound system. It does make death one crit away,or close, but if you like games more based on reality it would work rather well. I considered using it for my game, but decided against; the chance of a one hit death while at full health... ouch!

Dark Archive

DracoDruid wrote:

Ok, I wonder what you all think about the Vitality/Wound point system.

I found it quite interesting, because they actually make it "understandable" what "Hitpoints" are and give players a faster healing progression so they don't need a priest THAT much.

Wait, is it OGL?

PRO:
- better understanding
- faster healing w/o priests

CON:
- Two pools to remember

NEUTRAL
- lucky hits more deadly
- no non-lethal damage (but I would reintroduce them once all vitality points are used up: critical hit with a sap, *bumm*, victim unconcious)

I have long since used the vitality/wounds system from UA (and yes, it's OGL), and I absolutely love it!

I house-ruled it a bit, and in my games wound points slightly increase during level progression - and feats such as Toughness gain a huge appeal even at high levels.

It works better along an improved/easier healing mechanic - I like the one from he Book of Experimental Might I best - and gives a more realist feeling to combat, especially at mid-high levels, where large numbers of HPs sometimes make up for funny situations.

It must also be stressed that it is more geared for a gritty, deadly style of gaming.
Moreover, a bit of overhaul of weapon tables and mechanics should be taken into account, as the critical range threat becomes a too much important factor in the standard UA rules.

I would be very happy to see a PFRPG optional rule based on this mechanic.


The fact that the VP/WP system has never survived in any d20 system that it was presented in should be a clue that it doesn't work out well. In concept it seems more realistic, but in play it means players die more easily, which is generally bad for the game. Not that I am in favor of the whole idea of removing all death effects from the game, but I don't believe we need to make the game deadlier.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
golem101 wrote:


I have long since used the vitality/wounds system from UA (and yes, it's OGL), and I absolutely love it!
I house-ruled it a bit, and in my games wound points slightly increase during level progression - and feats such as Toughness gain a huge appeal even at high levels.

It works better along an improved/easier healing mechanic - I like the one from he Book of Experimental Might I best - and gives a more realist feeling to combat, especially at mid-high levels, where large numbers of HPs sometimes make up for funny situations.

It must also be stressed that it is more geared for a gritty, deadly style of gaming.
Moreover, a bit of overhaul of weapon tables and mechanics should be taken into account, as the critical range threat becomes a too much important factor in the standard UA rules.

I would be very happy to see a PFRPG optional rule based on this mechanic.

It probably also would work a lot better for a low magic type campaign where the threat scaling isn't quite so asymptotic. In the upper levels where you've got attacks that do high digit damage, a crit is going to be a one shot kill. It works well in Star Wars that with the exception of things such as light saber combat, most weapons don't scale that much as the APL climbs.


I have tried to do the Wound/Vitality thing, its nice having a differentiation for what Hit Points represent, but it is a kludge to get it to work. It would be a pain for the backwards compatibility camp. So I went with a half and half idea. Basically a number of HP equal to your CON score plus Level equals "real damage" and the rest if "near miss" damage. In all other respects Hit Points remain unchanged, we just call out at what point the damage becomes "real".
something like this could be included in the rules without damaging backwards compatibility.


Baquies wrote:
I have tried to do the Wound/Vitality thing...

You aren't alone.

I haven't tried this variant, but it looks somewhat interesting.

Dark Archive

LazarX wrote:
It probably also would work a lot better for a low magic type campaign where the threat scaling isn't quite so asymptotic. In the upper levels where you've got attacks that do high digit damage, a crit is going to be a one shot kill. It works well in Star Wars that with the exception of things such as light saber combat, most weapons don't scale that much as the APL climbs.

Agreed. I forgot to add that my campaigns where I used the W/V system have always had a cap/narrative end at around 12th level.

Liberty's Edge

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure, Companion, Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Not a fan.


My group uses it, and so far, so good (but we play a low level, low magic game).


No....just no, it does not lead to the type of game D&D is, maybe an overhauled option for more "realistic" games, but still it goes against the high fantasy genre which is D&D's niche. GURPS is what you want for a low-magic, realistic game (from what I hear).

And yes, I have tried it out, it worse a nightmare, one guy got down the first hit just because I rolled a 20, not fun.


As I can see the one CON that is brought up over and over again, is that critical hits are just TOO deadly.

But there would be an easy solution:

- Let critical hits work as usual
- Coup de Grace automatically inflict wound damage
- Problem solved

With this fix, the system is quite brilliant, ESPECIALLY for high fantasy settings, since Vitality Points heal like non-lethal damage (1/level/hour!) which makes the characters even faster back to action!


I use a vitality/wound system in my homebrew system, but I don't think it should be the default in Pathfinder. It takes a lot of effort to keep track off and increases the lethality. Plus, it tends to lead to things like hit location tables which are even more complicated.

Wouldn't object to having an optional rule through. I've been playing around with the idea of tying a D&D VP/WP system into the ranks of a cleric's healing spells - e.g. light, moderate, serious, critical & harm (mortal), but the results are probably too 'gritty' for most D&D players, even though it has only a fraction of a critical hit's damage go to WP.


I don't like them!

Why?

Just read:
http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=starwars/article/sw20070322jc101

under: What's Wrong With Vitality Points and Wound Points?

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I liked the concept of vitality/wound points. In the end, I like how WotC handled injury with its Star Wars Saga Edition better.

I've been a proponent on these pages for some time to have Paizo amend Massive Damage Threshold (MAS), so that it's no longer save or die, but rather, reflects a condition track during battle. E.g.,

MAS = Constitution Score

Any damage in excess of one's MAS requires a Fort Save v. Damage Taken. A failure results in -1 to Attacks, Armor Class, Saves, and Checks. This is cumulative.

You can remove negative conditions by healing in an amount greater that your Constitution score (+1 for each time greater than Con score), resting 8 hours, and restoration magic.


Not enough bang for the bookkeeping, I think. Yck on more bookkeeping. So, no thanks on this one.


Use it in my group. Keeps the players on their toes, even at higher levels.


I use it in my more experienced gaming group. Crits dont have a multiplier, they just do wound=CON dam. Only crits on 20. Every 2 levels you gain an extra wound, and Toughness adds directly to wounds. We also play AEG L5R which is a grittier sytem, so it all depends on how your gaming geeks feel.

Liberty's Edge

Not a fan, personally.

I think hit points need a little more clear of an explanation, in the fact that they're not a perfect indicator of plain physical damage; there's a large cinematic element to them. I think a lot of players and DM's miss that point.


I don't like it at all. We tried it in a past campaign that lasted up to about 8 level, and the DM insisted to use this, along some other tweaks to the system (spell points and so on), and it didn't work. Things got ugly pretty fast.

Dark Archive

When my group tried using it with the old d20 Star Wars game it was more of a hassle than anything and we ended up simply making our own hit point system for the game. Like someone else said, every time it has been used in an official capacity it has ended up being dropped or made an optional rule like in UnA. I would say if you want to use it, that's great. It might even work great with the new energy channeling mechanic, but leave hit points for those of us who would rather use them.


Yeah sure. I wouldn't vote for PF using them if half of you don't like em.
This had no use I guess.
But I plan to use them in my Set of D&D3.75 and just wanted to hear what your experiences are.

From what I have read, the biggest problem are the criticals directly dealing wound damage (which could be easily solved).
The next thing was the need to tailor with two different sets of "hitpoints" which I don't think is that much of a problem.
Whether you call them wound points and let them drop not under 0,
or using similar rules for negative hit points and let them drop to -CON is no difference for me, except that I prefer non-negative values.

So thanks again to all of you.

Liberty's Edge

airwalkrr wrote:
The fact that the VP/WP system has never survived in any d20 system that it was presented in should be a clue that it doesn't work out well. In concept it seems more realistic, but in play it means players die more easily, which is generally bad for the game. Not that I am in favor of the whole idea of removing all death effects from the game, but I don't believe we need to make the game deadlier.

maybe the players need to learn to use strategtic instead of just charge vs the enemy :P

i see it as the difference between halo and gears of war...

mind you i like both... but in one you see people jumping and shooting and in the other you see people covering and using their heards because a lucky shots sends them to the ground.


It's good, as it stands in the SW D20 and in UA, but it's not very D&D and it's not very backwards compatible either.

I hope this doesn't make its way into 3P.

Peace,

tfad


I use the Vitality/wound point system with a small change. A Crit Hit does not do straight Wound damage. Instead, it does damage as a normal hit to Vitality, with extra bleeding over to wound points. However, it automatically does a single point of wound damage.

This means that a critical hit has an extra level of deadlyness, without being over-done.

As for healing, when applied, healing magic always applies to Wound points first.

This system has been working for me so far. Wound point damage means that a character is REALLY in trouble, and it definatly puts a fear of Character Death into my players.

Still, I would keep it optional. It DOES add to the paperwork.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

I used WP/VP in my 3.5 game for a long time and the headaches it caused led to me trying to re-engineer 3.5 into using a Damage Threshold (DT) to get it to work well across various levels of play. In addition, my players were ABOMINABLE at math and even including a damage tracking chart (to show when VP spilled over the DT into WP) didn't help overly much.

Now when SW Saga Edition came out, I was immediately impressed that the DT system they created had a condition track rather that simply two separate pools of "HP". In hindsight, this would have worked much better than my approach which still worked better than the SRD version of VP/WP.

In terms of "how I think of VP/WP"... Vitality Points = The Bruce Willis Factor. Wound Points = "Oh God, my leg is off!"

Dark Archive

DracoDruid wrote:
Ok, I wonder what you all think about the Vitality/Wound point system.

Great for the right campaign. Not for PFRPG -- too many backwards-compatibility issues.


Why would BWC be a problem?
You keep your old hit points as vitality points and would add a number of wound points to your char.
(Besides, this would be nearly the same as the initial hit point boost option when using CON as additional hit points - hope you know what I mean)

Sure, some feats should be reworked (I think about toughness) but what else, which isn't rewritten one way or the other?

Dark Archive

DracoDruid wrote:

Why would BWC be a problem?

You keep your old hit points as vitality points and would add a number of wound points to your char.
(Besides, this would be nearly the same as the initial hit point boost option when using CON as additional hit points - hope you know what I mean)

Sure, some feats should be reworked (I think about toughness) but what else, which isn't rewritten one way or the other?

Undead (who have no CON score).

Increased PC deaths (see Unearthed Arcana on the developers' thoughts) especially at mid-to-high levels as monsters not only inflict higher damage, but greater chance of inflicting crits to bypass HPs and affect wounds.

Reworking feats, spells, and special abilities to accommodate Vitality/Wounds system (again, see UA)

There's no non-lethal damage in the system, so abilities that inflict such damage will have to be adapted.

Healing and how it affects both (i.e., how does variable healing affect VP/WP versus fixed healing like the Heal spell, etc.?)

Adjusting CR (see UA).

Increased complexity. I agree with you: while I don't find the system complex, other posts here and other sites indicate many a DM and their players can't wrap their mind around it.

Liberty's Edge

I have a variant hit point system of "Vitality / Stamina" that I've been using for my current Shackled City game - characters are now 12th level.

It is vastly different from what my original proposal was - and that is due to playtesting - but as of a few games ago, I feel that its evolution has finally reached its nadir, and is now a thoroughly play-tested and balanced system that we are enjoying.

The details (along with all my house rules and campaign info) is found on my messageboard I use for the camapaign.

as a warning: hit points is a very basic system; but serves it's purpose - it's easy, simply to use, and quite understandable. But its simplicity is its own flaw.

My system is far more complex - but playtesting has provided the means for its synergized use with 3.5 mechanics such as healing, power attacks, sneak attacks, etc; thus it does take into accound many of the concerns voiced on this thread. I assure you - it has been being playtested for quite a while, and now works (for us) quite well (albeit far more complex than just a simple hit points total).

If you dont mind it's complexity, have a look-see .

If you want a game that kills PCs faster and harder to survive - this is not the system for you. If on the other hand, you want a system that limits the amount of healing needed, and lets the PCs cling to life and battle on a little longer like true heroes, this system provides that means. My players have enjoyed their enduring longevity even in the most hardest-fought battles. That is not to say that death has not occurred: there has been 4 confirmed PC deaths so far in Shackled City. But since we as a group, prefer long-term campaigns and long-term story-arcs, it really throws a wrench in, when a PC dies and/or can't come back as it screws up the story - so we prefer games where the hero sticks around - like the R.A. Salvatore novels.....

Robert

Sovereign Court

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure, Companion, Lost Omens, Maps, Rulebook, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

I like the idea of Wound/Vitality (although I've never tried it). It strikes me as a good option but not a core rule for Pathfinder.

Question for you all who've tried it. Has anyone come up with a solution for the no non-lethal damage issue? That always struck me as a problem. Is it just Vitality and when you get to 0 Vitality you're knocked out?


I came up with a quite easy solution:

- vitality points are reduced by lethal/non-lethal damage without difference.

- wound points differenciate between lethal/non-lethal as normal:
If your non-lethal damage exceeds your momentary wound points (= Max. WP minus wound damage) you fall unconscious.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Mosaic wrote:
Question for you all who've tried it. Has anyone come up with a solution for the no non-lethal damage issue? That always struck me as a problem. Is it just Vitality and when you get to 0 Vitality you're knocked out?

That's basically what I did, yes. To reduce the chance of PC death, I counted lethal and non-lethal BOTH as Vitality. When VP fell to 0, the character would fall unconscious.

Another possibility would be to treat a character whose VP falls below their Constitution score as having a condition similar to disabled. However, this would require 4E-style greater than normal VP at 1st level.

Weakened: When a character's Vitality Points drop below their Constitution score, that creature is considered weakened. A weakened character may take a single move action or standard action each round (but not both, nor can they take full-round actions). They move at half speed. Taking move actions doesn’t risk further injury, but performing any standard action (or any other action the game master deems strenuous, including some free actions such as casting a quickened spell) deals 1 point of Vitality damage after the completion of the act.

Upon reaching 0 VP, the character falls unconscious. Characters with the Diehard feat do not fall unconscious at 0 VP. Instead upon reaching 0 VP such characters suffer 1 point of Wound damage after the completion of a strenuous act.

Grand Lodge

A suggestion of mine would be just use a % system.

Just do it in teirs.
Example one: Say a character has 40 hit points so he's at 100%, he's fine. So follow the chart below. Make the penalties to whatever you need to.

HP % Penalty
40 100% -0
30 75% -2
20 50% -4
10 25% -6

In this example you wouldn't be at a -4 penalty until you hit 19 hit points. Obviously hp won't always divide this clean, so you'll have to round up or down, DM's choice.

Or you could make it longer or shorter.

Example
HP % Penalty
40 100 -0
32 80 -2
24 60 -4
16 40 -6
8 20 -8


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

The problem with increasing penalties like that is "The Slippery Slope". Basically, You are further increasing the difficulty for a character that is already "losing".

That's not to mention needing to make room on the character sheet for a chart of HP percentages — one that must be recalculated at each level or whenever the CON modifier changes for some reason. Also, You would have to trust the player to remember to apply the appropriate penalties at each %band. As DM there's no way I'm going to be able to keep track of that for 4+ players...


The "slippery Slope" however, is far closer to reality. In any fight, it is ALWAYS harder to come back from a losing position, and it gets more and more difficult the more you 'lose' (HP).

Except for pro-wrestling... there you have to lose for awhile first. Which shows you what 'reality' D&D HP systems are closer to.

Anyhow, I am a big fan of simulation, but I also understand that the game needs to be fun for the players, so perhaps adding the penalties AFTER the current encounter would be a simple solution? We could just say adrenaline (shock?) is keeping the fighter from noticing his arm is hanging off until after his friends are safe - then he collapses.

That would simulate realism while also allowing the PCs to finish up whatever brutal fight they are in the middle of.

I'm also a fan of Wound points, but I think some sort of % system might work better then two seperate scores. I've toyed with several different systems over the years, and I was never quite happy with any of them.

Another consideration is using a flat number for the various levels a PC is hampered at. It seems rather unfair that a character with 100HP and 50 left is penalized the exact same way as a character with 8HP and only 4 left. Maybe have a choice, like a character is considered wounded (-2) at 50% HP [i]or[i] 20HP, whichever is lower. That way, high-lev PCs will be able to lose most of their HP before going 'into the red'.

Liberty's Edge

Diodric wrote:

A suggestion of mine would be just use a % system.

Just do it in teirs.
Example one: Say a character has 40 hit points so he's at 100%, he's fine. So follow the chart below. Make the penalties to whatever you need to.

HP % Penalty
40 100% -0
30 75% -2
20 50% -4
10 25% -6

In this example you wouldn't be at a -4 penalty until you hit 19 hit points. Obviously hp won't always divide this clean, so you'll have to round up or down, DM's choice.

Or you could make it longer or shorter.

Example
HP % Penalty
40 100 -0
32 80 -2
24 60 -4
16 40 -6
8 20 -8

The problem with this system is at low levels, it doesn't take much before you're at these worse conditions, thus making the difficulty in overcoming the combat exacerbated.

A 2nd level character with a generous 20 hit points would be suffering penalties after just 5 measly points of damage.

A 1st level character with 12 hit points needs suffer only 3 before making surival even tougher.

It's a good concept; one that I agree with; but the mechanics are flawed in this case IMO in that it's too punitive. If you haven't had a chance to peruse my designed system for this which I posted the link in a previous post, it does contain mechanics similar to this -- that slowly debilitates the creature as their stamina wanes. (doing what some people have suggested - causing penalties to attack rolls etc), and it adds that level of realism that people have iterated about - like a boxing match that watches the combatants slowly wear themselves out - until the knock-out punch.

Robert

Sovereign Court

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure, Companion, Lost Omens Subscriber

Just wanted to say I've had experience with Vitality/Wound Points from Star Wars(version before the Saga Edition?) and tried it briefly when it was suggested in Unearthed Arcana. I thought the system was OK for Stars Wars, but not great and very ckunky for DnD, not heroic at all, too slow. I didn't like it.


Well this is a real shame ‘cause I like the VP/WP system for the way it clarifies the idea of damage beyond the abstract HP format and helps give an extra boost of survivability to low-level characters when they need it the most. PLUS it recognizes that a man, no matter how experienced he is in fighting, can still be killed by a sword through the lungs.

Still, I’m going to take y’all’s word on this because I frankly don’t have the experience with the high level adventuring where you say this really becomes a problem. Looking at some numbers, though, it seems that adventuring in the teen levels often puts characters up against critters with attack bonuses in excess of the character’s AC and damage outputs up to 1/4 of a fighter’s hit points. Barring any ‘1’s on the monster’s part, that PC is dead in four rounds and that’s only assuming one attack per round.

What goes on at high-level games that keeps that from happening and why doesn’t it work to revive fallen WP/VP sufferers?


You know, I personally /love/ Vitality and Wound points because they not only clarify what Damage really means more than the abstract hit-point system, but they necessitate armor actually blocking damage, and make critical hits deadly, all things I enjoy.

VP/WP system is the system we often see in movies, character shields, character importance. It takes the abstract hard to explain method of hit points and makes it, for me, easy to explain suddenly, and makes the RP that much more immersive.

They make PC's more survivable at low-levels, and more vulnerable at high levels. If you only can use Vitality when aware and capable of responding to an attack they make all Classes capable of sneak attacks and surprise knockouts provided they roll well. (and with a tweak to Rogue's sneak attack, they suddenly don't need all those extra D6's and can focus the class and balance elsewhere.)

They add an element of randomness and grit to the game, especially when the loss of wounds causes a loss of combat effectiveness, and suddenly heroes may be bad-ass but they're also Mortal.

However, I've learned that people seem to like randomness when it comes to rolling for HP's making your Barbarian one shot away from death at 5th level, but they don't like the same thing when a 15th Level hero Critted by a dragon is in the same dire straits.

Personally I dislike SWRPG Saga edition for how much they've moved away from SWRPG Revised, which was in my opinion one of the most fun D20 games I've ever played, and I still continue to play it. It just needed a few tweaks, extra feats, and they changed the entire system to be much much worse.

I've also learned that what I like is largely not supported by the community, so I will just have to play my SWRPG Revised or UA in the privacy of my own home.


I actually like wounds/vitality in place of straight HP, but I recognize it's not a very graceful system.

I thought that the concept of "bloodied" from 4e too wasn't bad. In place of wounds/vitality, I wouldn't mind seeing a flip state, where at various points of HP (1/2? 1/4?) a player starts to suffer penalties or some sort. I think others have referred to this as the "slippery slope" system?

Overall the goal should be to make it interesting, exciting, and with some degree of realism.

/2cp

Scarab Sages

Not good.

There are actually many unbalancing effects to wounds/vitality, and it makes the game more complicated in practice. More cons than pros, really. The play's the thing.

The Exchange

We've been running Vit/Wds in my group for 2 years now-- tweaked from Unearthed arcana's system a decent amount though. Major Changes:

1. The "crit = wound damage" only occurs once a person is at 1/2 Vitality or less (i.e. "Bloodied" ala 4th Ed). This prevents the "first hit= death from 40+ damage" that high level play can bring and actually keeps players interested in maintaining their Vit above a certain level. In my game, players like to gamble against having Full Vit when resources are limited, since each hour can bring healing, but know they need to keep above bloodied to avoid devastating Wound damage.

When a crit hits a non-bloodied individual, they took two times damage or higher, see #3).

2. Add 2 Wd to a PC/NPCs Wound pool for every 3 class levels-- this was a somewhat arbitrary determination but has been shown to raise survivability at an optimal rate.

3. Keep crit ranges as written in the PHB; when a scythe hits a non-bloodied foe it deals x4 damage. If it hits a bloodied foe, it deals 2x to Wound, given its brutal nature. An axe would be x3 and x1.5, respectively. Its nice to keep versatility with the weaponry

4. If a foe lacks any Vitality and is critted, they take the full crit damage (x2, x3, or x4)... they're in bad shape and then just got hit in a major location.. death is imminent.

We've done even more with the static saves, rate of recovery, thresholds for becoming fatigued, interaction with fast healing, regeneration & healing magic, etc.

It's quite fun for us, but its not a great system straight out of the book I'm afraid, though I've run our version for people at a GenCon game who had no prior exposure and they responded quite well. I'd be happy to provide our full rules list if anyone is deeply interested.


For those of you who have used this system in high-level games, how much more deadly is it to the PCs? How many PC deaths per adventure are we talking here?


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
DracoDruid wrote:

As I can see the one CON that is brought up over and over again, is that critical hits are just TOO deadly.

But there would be an easy solution:

- Let critical hits work as usual
- Coup de Grace automatically inflict wound damage
- Problem solved

With this fix, the system is quite brilliant, ESPECIALLY for high fantasy settings, since Vitality Points heal like non-lethal damage (1/level/hour!) which makes the characters even faster back to action!

I like your solution to the problem of crits and would vote to have this included as an optional method in Pathfinders.

Doug


Magagumo wrote:
...It's quite fun for us, but its not a great system straight out of the book I'm afraid, though I've run our version for people at a GenCon game who had no prior exposure and they responded quite well. I'd be happy to provide our full rules list if anyone is deeply interested.

I am! If you like send a copy at: Myname (with a dot in between) at gmx dot net

THX!


Magagumo wrote:
I'd be happy to provide our full rules list if anyone is deeply interested.

You can bet I am.

My group is very experienced, and my games have a big deal of drama, AND my players like the idea of dying because of a sword blow, even if you are the great hero, like movies, comics, etc etc (someone mentioned Salvatore, and the Devil Due's legend of drizzt comic helped my players like this idea even more), but I still need to take a good look at the vitality / wounds thing.

Also, I would like some ideas for you people. With the starting point that this thing of gritty realism is okay for my players and our games, and that we like the idea of "low-to-mid-to-mid-high-leves",I need opinions about the system.

There are many differences in the system I use, but I'll list the few that I need help with.

1st: Characters use defense bonus, as UA.
Changes: If you have two classes that use the same table of progression (say, rogue and bard) you add their levels to find your defense bonus. If you have two with different progressions, you use the one you have a better value.
How's Working: Nice until now.

2nd: Vitality and wounds points.
Changes: I'm trying to use the system as written, with the exception that damage reduction still reduces the damage you suffer on your WP with a critical hit. In the critical hits, we use a random table of effects. In more than 30% of it you cause normal (wound) damage, in some 15% you cause double wound damage (ugh), and the rest you cause normal wound damage, plus some cute effect like "helm removed, stunned for xdx rounds", "chest injuries, 1d6 strenght damage" and "possible decapitation".
Ho's working: This table is not the problem until now, it seems.
Problem: The healing. It doesn't look well. It seems strange this realism and healing the wounds first, also, the "+ bonus" healing the wounds seems strange, as a Healer would heal almost all wound points of average joe with a cure light wounds spell, by level five...
Idea: Don't know... maybe healing spells healing normal damage to vitality, but 2 wound points per level of the spell (healer adding his cha bonus to this...), or anything....

3rd: Armor as damage reduction.
Problem: Armor give half its value as damage reduction, plus any enhancement, including reducing wound point in critical hits?

or

Armor giving whole value as damage reduction of vitality, and converting "lethal wound damage" to "nonlethal wound damage"?

or

Armor giving half value plus enhancement as dr, and converting this amount of lethal wound to nonlethal wound?

Until now (still don't playtestet it) the second one sounds better to me... But then, I need help with this.

Any ideas?

Ps: Sorry about the bad english. Me-no-native.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Magagumo wrote:
I'd be happy to provide our full rules list if anyone is deeply interested.

Yes please! I would love to see your rules. Don't know if I'll use them, but I accept any and all inspiration. That, and I'm sure it will make a fun read. :P

As far as the VP/WP system is concerned, I generally think it needs a lot of tweaking to work for DnD. I find it works much better in d20 Modern and it worked all right in Star Wars, but those heroes tend to be grittier "Die Hard" characters rather than Conan-the-I-Just-Crushed-Your-Head-With-A-Stick that shows up in DnD. I would like to see Pathfinder address the abstract nature of hit points and make sure that players know that they don't represent what they do in computer RPGs. The storytelling nature of pen-and-paper RPGs needs to be stressed. Heck, that's the DM's job!

And Diego, I would not have been able to tell English was your second (or third?) language. You already know more than me: I can just read a little latin.


It seems like reviving an old post, but I have something to say.

I started using the vitality / wound system, combined with some other variants.

I started using the defense system of UA, with the exception that armor gives half its value to DR, and the other half I call Damage Conversion. When a character takes vitality damage, he uses his DR, and when he takes wound, he discounts the DR, and then use the damage conversion to convert the wound damage to non-lethal wound damage.

That, with characters gaining 2 more wound points per 3 HD solved the problem and the system works really nice. The characters are rarely hit, but when they are (and the monsters are) the consequences are terrible!!!

1 to 50 of 63 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | next > last >>
Community / Forums / Archive / Pathfinder / Playtests & Prerelease Discussions / Pathfinder Roleplaying Game / Alpha Playtest Feedback / Alpha Release 3 / General Discussion / How do you think about Vitality / Wound Points? All Messageboards