PROPOSAL: Critical range enhancing Fusions (modified)!


Homebrew


Thanks to Garretmander and Windblaze for their feedback.

I am a bit underwhelmed by critical effects and weapon fusions with crit effects in this game, mainly because of the fact that they never happen (you need a 20, and even then, often there are saving throws attached), while the added cost is pretty high, especially for fusions.
So I want to add some fusions that could help bring back a little of that crit range that I miss and also make crit effects (especially fusion based) more palatable to players:

THREATENING (lvl. 2)
DANGEROUS (lvl. 5)
DEADLY (lvl. 8)

THREATENING:
the critical range of this weapon is increased to 19-20. This means that you can score a critical hit on a natural 19 or 20 with this weapon (as per normal rules, pag. 245 of the Core Rulebook). However, you need to confirm the critical hit in order to gain any critical effect and damage that the weapon might have. To confirm, you must roll the attack again, with the same bonuses, against the target's EAC. If you fail the confirmation roll, you treat the attack as a normal hit. This fusion is not compatible with weapons that naturally deal non-lethal damage, and you cannot benefit from the enhanced range if your attack is dealing non-lethal damage.
You can only have 1 critical range enhancement fusion installed in a weapon at any given time.

DANGEROUS:
the critical range of this weapon is increased to 19-20. This means that you can score a critical hit on a natural 19 or 20 with this weapon (as per normal rules, pag. 245 of the Core Rulebook). However, you need to confirm the critical hit in order to gain any critical effect and damage that the weapon might have. To confirm, you must roll the attack again, but with a +2 bonus on top of any other bonuses the original roll had, against the target's EAC. If you fail the confirmation roll, you treat the attack as a normal hit. This fusion is not compatible with weapons that naturally deal non-lethal damage, and you cannot benefit from the enhanced range if your attack is dealing non-lethal damage.
You can only have 1 critical range enhancement fusion installed in a weapon at any given time.

DEADLY:
the critical range of this weapon is increased to 19-20. This means that you can score a critical hit on a natural 19 or 20 with this weapon (as per normal rules, pag. 245 of the Core Rulebook). However, you need to confirm the critical hit in order to gain any critical effect and damage that the weapon might have. To confirm, you must roll the attack again, but with a +4 bonus on top of any other bonuses the original roll had, against the target's EAC. If you fail the confirmation roll, you treat the attack as a normal hit. This fusion is not compatible with weapons that naturally deal non-lethal damage, and you cannot benefit from the enhanced range if your attack is dealing non-lethal damage.
You can only have 1 critical range enhancement fusion installed in a weapon at any given time.

Let me know what you think. I think the item levels are on par, if you consider that the highest level of fusion in any published manual is 10. Also, note that there's the added trade off that if you fail the conf. roll on a 20 you give up your crit effect that you would otherwise have had, such is the price of the extended range.

Sovereign Court

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I kinda like that we're not rolling confirmation rolls on crits anymore. But I agree we don't see enough of fancy crit effects.

My preferred solution would not be using more fusions, because they eat up money and room for other fusions on your weapon.

Rather, I'd like to increase the crit range on weapons, while removing entirely the extra damage effect of crits. So say that all weapons threaten a crit on a 17-20, and confirm if the attack roll hits on numbers along (not just because a nat 20 always hits). But the only extra damage you get is if your crit ability deals extra damage.

Suddenly, crit effects become a LOT more common, close to 4x more common. (A 17 on the die is usually a hit.) And the enemy is less likely to die from pure damage before the crit effect does anything.

When every weapon crits often, the search for fusions that add crit effects to weapons without any built-in effect becomes more relevant.

I do think the crit effects with no save may need a bit of tuning (knockdown for example).

Remembering that "17+ on the die is super" is easy. Not a lot of calculation involved.


Ascalaphus wrote:

I kinda like that we're not rolling confirmation rolls on crits anymore. But I agree we don't see enough of fancy crit effects.

My preferred solution would not be using more fusions, because they eat up money and room for other fusions on your weapon.

Thanks for the feedback. Personally I am not a fan of confirmation rolls either, but that was 1 easy way of balancing the fusions without making them too powerful. I also don't feel like changing how crits work in the entire game, as it would be to difficult for me to understand the broad repercussions.

Sovereign Court

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Removing 2x damage from crits, but widening the range at which extra effects pop up, would definitely change the game.

I don't think you need to do anything for players - if they have a weapon with a crit effect they're good, if not that's exactly the incentive to buy crit fusions that was missing.

I think you need a fallback option for monsters that would be left with nothing. The thrill of "oh crap the boss just rolled a 20" needs to be there. It's good that you can't quite count out "he did this much damage with a normal hit, so I can survive for X more hits" or "I can provoke from him, he can't drop me in one hit". The risk of the occasional damage spike throwing your calculations into chaos should be there, otherwise combat becomes too plannable.

So for monsters without a crit effect on their weapon, maybe add their CR again to the damage? Not as much as a full crit, but then again they're critting more often.

Having much more common crit effects would definitely change the tone of combat a it - more people running around on fire. I would like to see that in action


Ascalaphus wrote:

Removing 2x damage from crits, but widening the range at which extra effects pop up, would definitely change the game.

I don't think you need to do anything for players - if they have a weapon with a crit effect they're good, if not that's exactly the incentive to buy crit fusions that was missing.

I think you need a fallback option for monsters that would be left with nothing. The thrill of "oh crap the boss just rolled a 20" needs to be there. It's good that you can't quite count out "he did this much damage with a normal hit, so I can survive for X more hits" or "I can provoke from him, he can't drop me in one hit". The risk of the occasional damage spike throwing your calculations into chaos should be there, otherwise combat becomes too plannable.

So for monsters without a crit effect on their weapon, maybe add their CR again to the damage? Not as much as a full crit, but then again they're critting more often.

Having much more common crit effects would definitely change the tone of combat a it - more people running around on fire. I would like to see that in action

Cool. How about: extended range 19-20, and then 18-20 at the highest, no confirmation roll, but:

>> if you hit nat. 20, you can deal your normal crit with everything legal (no change)
>> if you hit nat. 19 or 18, instead you can apply the crit effect/s, but you DON'T get the extra damage.

How about something like that? :)

Sovereign Court

What I'm proposing is actually a bit more radical: increase the range for everyone. Not through fusions or specific weapons. The problem with doing it through fusions is:
* It eats up space on how many fusions you can put on the weapon, including space you might use for adding crit effects.
* It doesn't really work for NPCs
* It doesn't work for natural attacks

What I would do:
* Crits don't do double damage anymore. They only do crit effects.
* A crit happens on a roll of 17+, assuming the attack hits.
* If an NPC doesn't have a crit effect, they add their CR x 2 as bonus damage on a crit. (That's generally less than a real crit effect.)

This doesn't require rewriting any statblocks. It's a bit less punishing for level 1 PC vs. boss fights. It makes crit effects 4x more common. And all those weapons that seem really overpriced because they have a fancy crit effect, become competitive.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

So, exactly what benefit do *PCs* get, if they are using a weapon with no crit effect?

Sovereign Court

Metaphysician wrote:
So, exactly what benefit do *PCs* get, if they are using a weapon with no crit effect?

None. That's intended. Go out and either pick out a weapon with a crit effect, or a slap a fusion on your weapon.

Right now, weapons and fusions with crit effects seem to be valued high by the writers for those crit effects, but we're not seeing it. We pay in credits, item levels, smaller damage dice, and get crit effects in return.

So to make that trade more attractive, the value of crit effects should go down. That means that items without crit effects lose (relative) value.

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