Seminar Transcript - Reimagining Skills and Ability Scores - Page 20


What's on your mind?

  1. #191
    Registered User
    Novice (Lvl 1)

    thzero's Avatar

    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Streamwood, IL
    Posts
    48
    Reviews
    Read 0 Reviews

    ° Ignore thzero
    My communities:

    Quote Originally Posted by Primal View Post
    It is indeed a lot slower; we tried it in 3.5, and combats took forever. Especially at level 15+ it was a pain to roll DCs and opposed defense rolls (vs. attacks). Never again in D&D, never again...
    Perhaps its because I played a lot of M&M with it this way; now granted M&M doesn't have the iterative attacks either. I have used in it Conan though, replacing the static 10 in defense with a d20 and it worked out ok. But again while there are iterative attacks going on, there is a lot less things happening in combat due to lack of magic items and all the D&D spells.

    That all being said I'm not necessarily sure its a good thing to have for the base D&D experience, but as an option, especially if you are doing a magic light campaign it would be nice to have.

 

  • #192
    Registered User
    Acolyte (Lvl 2)

    Tricky110974's Avatar

    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Worksop
    Posts
    39
    Reviews
    Read 2 Reviews

    ° Ignore Tricky110974
    Quote Originally Posted by stonegod View Post
    Dump stats have existed as long as I can rember: Fighters with Int 8 and Wizards with Str 6 in my 2E games. 3/4E did tend to make one/two stats more important per class, but dumping is not new.

    A balance needs to be reached. If every stat is important, no stat will be special, to misquote a fine movie. If I can't afford to give my Fighter a good strength lest his low Int kill him, everything will be 12s. Trade offs give choice: I know a low score may hurt me, but there is a gulf between hurt and debilitate. The 3/4E styles seemed fine to me. What did they do wrong (or conversely, who did it right)?
    Agree that dumping is not new, but I never noticed such an impact until 4e, where I saw so many characters that were focused on 1 or 2 scores only (dependant upon class/powers) and very rarely skills. This led to situations where a player would simply say, 'My character can't do that." with the reasoning that he need a character that could be effective in its role and use its powers.

    Making no score special may have some potential, with balance, as it was mentioned that the class would supplement those abilities that were required: a fighter gets a bonus to Str therefore, hopefully, avoid debilitated characters.

    I am running PF and the skills seem to work, but I spend most of the time (as GM) winging the outcomes of skill use. I think it has to do with the how the results of skill uses are handled. Most adventures pivot on combat encounters and skills fill in the space between. Making skills and their use have more effect on the game would be a step in the right direction for me. I will admit that I do try and make skill use more critical (a failed roll can result in something similar to a failed saving throw, as far as story progression goes) but the rules don't seem to lend themselves inherently to this type of application.

    If skills and saving throws are going to tied to ability scores as hinted in the seminar then this is OK for me.
    Currently running Pathfinder and really enjoying it.

  • #193
    Registered User
    Novice (Lvl 1)



    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    6035 Bidwell Trail, Mississauga, ON L5V3C8
    Posts
    40
    Reviews
    Read 0 Reviews
    Blog Entries
    2

    ° Ignore dimonic

    Race and ability scores

    Quote Originally Posted by Morrus View Post
    I've always been of the opposite school of thought. I've always wanted race to be more important than it is.

    Usually, it has a bit of an effect at first (not much) and by 5th level there's no difference to note between a hafling and a half-orc. But I WANT there to be a real noticeable difference between those two choices for the entire character life. A half-orc should be big and strong, and halfling should not (unless you do some weird stuff).

    I'd go further. I'd make the usual modifiers +/- 4. You KNOW that's a half-orc. He's big and strong, whatever career he chooses. The halfling is never going to be as strong as a half-orc.

    I think I'm in a minority there. Certainly Monte Cook doesn't agree with me.
    I have really enjoyed how 4e has made race important - and yet it has managed that without a negative modifier, and a +2 to two stats - and a class feature or two that continue giving regardless of your level, and then racial feats that continue to accentuate the differences. I generally play characters that choose the racial feats and even racial paragon paths - I have a human wizard - adroit explorer, for example, and really play up the human feats.

    I won't mind if there is a negative stat, but I would like two positive for the one negative. It also seems like there will be a stat boost for class slection as well, so +4 is probably way overkill. I think -2, +2, +2 for the race would be overkill, because it would stack with a +2 for class. Of course every player would have a 22 in their prime stat through this. Using -1, +1, +1 and +1 for class seems a little measly.

    I like the feel -2, +1, +2 for race, and another +1 for class.

  • #194
    The Guvnor
    Orcus on an Off-Day (Lvl 22)

    Morrus's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    Southampton
    Posts
    27,387
    Reviews
    Read 18 Reviews
    Blog Entries
    4
    13th AgeSupermanCircvs MaximvsENniesPathfinderZEITGEISTDoctor Who

    ° Ignore Morrus
    My communities:

    Quote Originally Posted by dimonic View Post
    I have really enjoyed how 4e has made race important - and yet it has managed that without a negative modifier, and a +2 to two stats - and a class feature or two that continue giving regardless of your level, and then racial feats that continue to accentuate the differences. I generally play characters that choose the racial feats and even racial paragon paths - I have a human wizard - adroit explorer, for example, and really play up the human feats.

    I won't mind if there is a negative stat, but I would like two positive for the one negative. It also seems like there will be a stat boost for class slection as well, so +4 is probably way overkill. I think -2, +2, +2 for the race would be overkill, because it would stack with a +2 for class. Of course every player would have a 22 in their prime stat through this. Using -1, +1, +1 and +1 for class seems a little measly.

    I like the feel -2, +1, +2 for race, and another +1 for class.
    Whether it's a positive or negative modifier is just nomenclature. I think poeple get too hung up on the word "negative".

    You can achieve the same effect by lowering the baseline, and handing out more positive modifers - just some races don't get them for some abilities. Same mathematical result, but now a bunch of folks are happy because they're not getting a negative modifier.

  • #195
    Registered User
    Gallant (Lvl 3)

    Tilenas's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Twilight Hall
    Posts
    211
    Reviews
    Read 0 Reviews

    ° Ignore Tilenas
    Melkor:
    4D6 drop the lowest as default is my preferred method as well. It IS D&D.
    Disagree. 3D6 in order, crumble up character sheet, rinse, repeat IS D&D ;-)
    Quote Originally Posted by RangerWickett View Post
    This led us to creating in our game "thunderdeath furywheat" because in 4th edition, normal wheat just isn't awesome enough.

  • #196
    Registered User
    Guide (Lvl 11)

    WizarDru's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    Downingtown, PA
    Posts
    5,612
    Reviews
    Read 0 Reviews

    ° Ignore WizarDru
    My communities:

    Quote Originally Posted by Mallus View Post
    But even so, I was never thrilled w/the implementation.
    Agreed. I think the tools given were poorly executed...had WotC actually worked more on them, I think they would have truly been an innovation worthy of regular use. But too often, skill challenges were used sloppily or as just a combat using skills instead of powers. Piratecat's 4E story hour showed some stellar uses of the skill challenge format, redefining IMHO what they could be and how they could work. I wish the 4E team at WotC put as much effort into theirs.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mallus
    This worries me a bit, too. I want the numbers to stay small and manageable --and whatever situational modifiers the DM assigns to stay relevant-- throughout the campaign.
    Exactly. The manageability issue is a big one, too. In the 3E at high levels, a player might have bonues from items, spell effects, feat, class abilities and how knows what else. 4E just had tons of statuses and niggling effects.

    I just don't want the game to come to a screeching halt every time someone has to figure out their situational skill value ("Well, normally my jump is 10', but I have the Marshallow Climber skill and it's Winter, so I'm at +8' until Lunchtime!")
    "I'd say it's more appropriate to say that videogames are RPG-ish, wouldn't you?"

    Have you read our current Zad/Wizardru's New Story Hour (Updated 9/8)

    or our older WizarDru's Story Hour?
    You Should.
    I ain't linking to Piratecat's story hour...no sir, I just won't do it. He can just get the next half-million reads on his own.

    Did I mention that I have a Livejournal? It's possible that I have.

  • #197
    Registered User
    Minor Trickster (Lvl 4)

    gweinel's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    314
    Reviews
    Read 3 Reviews

    ° Ignore gweinel

    skill (less) system...

    It seems that they haven't decided 100% yet what the skill system will be.

    In today's rule of three: Dungeons & Dragons Roleplaying Game Official Home Page - Article...

    What does this mean going forward? It means we're still working on it. Skills are clearly important to many players as a customization element. The questions remaining in my mind are, "How can we create a system that provides the customization players get out of skills, while still making it easier for DMsŚand players who don't want to use a skills systemŚto adjudicate actions at the table.
    They want to make a skill-less system but i am not sure if it will gonna make it to the end.

    Regarding skills, imho, the thing of greatest important is character customization. I don't know how classes/races/themes work on the skills but in such system i am afraid the homogeneity of the characters. Every elf fighter with noble theme would have exactly the same skills? This is something i wouldn't like happening. The difference between a human noble and and dwarf noble would be only on the racial skill modifiers? This sounds awful too.

    Now on the other hand a character may have choices: The elf race has 10 racial skill bonuses (that would be a +2 to perception, +2 nature, +2 arcana, etc etc) and you must choose 4. The noble theme has 6 theme skill bonuses and you can take 2. The fighter class has 12 class skill bonuses and you can take 6. This kind of treatment of a skilless system is something that i would like more.

    And after that what about advancing? If i would like to learn a new skill? It would be a feat? I hope not. I think noone took feats for skills.
    A more organic skill advancement would be a guideness: "After you lvl up discuss with your dm what skill your character would like to take/raise (or what is appropriate - story based) and put a +2 on that skill. If it is not on your race/class/theme then put a +1. A solution like this is more of my liking.

    In any case i would suggest to make one or two good skill modules more since as i see everyone wants a different skill system :P

  • #198
    Okay, there's a lot of great stuff in here but I'm going to try to respond to just a few things that I might be able to clear up. Here's my obligatory bit about how we're still playtesting and designing and any of this stuff could change.
    Quote Originally Posted by Stalker0 View Post
    I generally like the ability score idea they are going with, my only real concern is will ability scores be too important?

    For example, in 4e one of the "issues" people quoted was because your primary ability score was so important you would always do your best to raise it, even only taking races that had a bump to that score.

    If the majority of your attack,damage, and even saves is your ability score, would that phenomena be even worse?
    So ability scores are important, but I don't think maxing out an ability score will be as uber important as it has been in some editions. You get stats, and then you choose your race and class. You race could give you a stat bump, and then your class could give you a stat bump too. So if you want to synergize you can, which could bring you a lot closer to that hard stat cap without rolling or point buying that 18.

    Another thing that goes into making these stats important but not "OMG I NEED 18S IN EVERYTHING!!11!!" goes along with that ability score ceiling. By shrinking the distance of ability score growth, they can condense the scale of challenges as well. So a +1 or a +2 to a specific stat or skill check really makes a difference.

    I'm hopeful that we'll see through playtesting that while stats are still important, people won't feel left behind or that they need to max a stat to feel useful or to have fun.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sammael View Post
    Aaaaannnnndddd... it's gone. My interest in D&D Next, that is. We have several deal breakers here, but the two critical ones are:

    1. Using ability scores for everything instead of skills (this is COMPLETELY the opposite of what I want in ANY role-playing game)

    2. NPCs don't follow the same rules as PCs.
    Ability scores are still used for skills. You need to jump across chasm - the DM looks at your strength stat and if it's high enough, you make it. If not, then maybe he has you make a strength roll. If you get a bonus to strength rolls made to jump, then that gets factored in. It's still a strength roll though, so it's based on your stat.

    And for NPCs not following the same rules as PCs, the idea is that those NPCs don't have to follow the same rules - not that you couldn't build an npc or monster that did. Maybe I don't understand the underlying issue with that one but I think uncoupling NPC or monster creation from the same rules that PCs might use when creating their characters makes things easier for the DM. I haven't had any difficulty running these monsters or seeing how they work, even with this idea behind it.

    Quote Originally Posted by interwyrm View Post
    If ability scores are random AND determine combat efficiency, I'm not going to switch to 5e. It's not fun feeling completely ineffective in the team... I know, I've played a poison focused character in a mod full of undead.
    One of the options for ability score generation is the roll 4d6 drop the lowest, but it's not the only option. I would suspect that the area on stats when we're all done with this will have a main option that it suggests (which might be the 4d6 roll) and some other options such as point buy and array along side it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sir Robilar View Post
    Has it been announced yet how basic ability checks are made in this system? 2E's roll under mechanic or the later approach of d20 + ability modifiers against a set DC? Can't find the information...
    We're running with the d20 + mods rolls at the moment.

    Quote Originally Posted by gweinel View Post
    It seems that they haven't decided 100% yet what the skill system will be.
    We definitely have not, but hopefully people understand that we're not set on things yet as we're still in the very early stages of playtesting. Everything is still an idea, some tested more than others. That's what this is all about.

    That said, I can definitely envision a base skill system like the one they've mentioned working in our final version - perhaps with a more robust, optional skill module in the initial release as well, one that reflects the specific skills and ranks like the most recent D&D editions. Time will tell though.

  • #199
    Moderator
    Superhero (Lvl 15)

    Stalker0's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Atlanta, GA
    Posts
    8,206
    Reviews
    Read 0 Reviews

    ° Ignore Stalker0
    My communities:

    Quote Originally Posted by WotC_Trevor View Post
    Another thing that goes into making these stats important but not "OMG I NEED 18S IN EVERYTHING!!11!!" goes along with that ability score ceiling. By shrinking the distance of ability score growth, they can condense the scale of challenges as well. So a +1 or a +2 to a specific stat or skill check really makes a difference.

    I'm hopeful that we'll see through playtesting that while stats are still important, people won't feel left behind or that they need to max a stat to feel useful or to have fun.
    .
    Hehe, after all the big posts and articles I've written, this few sentences is the one that gets read by WOTC

    Trevor your point makes a lot of sense. I think another avenue I would like WOTC to consider in the point buy realm is to return to 3e point buy scores. I felt that one reason 4e was more min/maxed was because raising a 13 to a 14 (getting the +2) costs 2 points instead of 1. That meant if you were raising a stat you might as well push it hard.

    In 3e, you could get a 14 fairly cheap in point buy terms, so having a character with a lot of "average" stats wasn't a bad way to go.
    Is your game having issues with Grind? Check out Stalker0's Guide to Anti-Grind

    Do you want a skill challenge system that is less mechanical and encourages more roleplaying? Try my Obsidian Skill Challenge System

    Like the core 4e system, but prefer a more balanced system with additional options? Try my Alternate Core Skill Challenge System

  • #200
    Commutiny Exporter
    Guide (Lvl 11)

    tuxgeo's Avatar

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Western Oregon, USA
    Posts
    1,441
    Reviews
    Read 0 Reviews
    Blog Entries
    4
    D&D

    ° Ignore tuxgeo
    My communities:

    Quote Originally Posted by Morrus View Post
    Whether it's a positive or negative modifier is just nomenclature. I think poeple get too hung up on the word "negative".

    You can achieve the same effect by lowering the baseline, and handing out more positive modifers - just some races don't get them for some abilities. Same mathematical result, but now a bunch of folks are happy because they're not getting a negative modifier.
    Probably close enough; but not exactly the same, because Point-buy's "Higher=Costlier" effect would actually give slightly different arithmetic results.

    For an example contrasting "negatives" against "lower baseline, positive only," try this one using Third Ed.'s "tough" 28 Point Buy (starting from scores of 8):

    METHOD 1 - "WITH NEGATIVE ADJUSTMENTS":
    Elves get +2 DEX and -2 CON. Make a high-CON elf using the "tougher" 28 total Third Edition points, getting these scores before applying racial adjustments:
    # STR 10 # DEX 16 # CON 15 # INT 10 # WIS 12 # CHA 10 #
    (Those unaugmented scores of 10-16-15-10-12-10 would cost 2+10+8+2+4+2, which add up to the specified 28 points by 3E rules.)

    After racial adjustments, the FINAL SCORES for that Level 1 PC would be:
    # STR 10 # DEX 18 (=16+2) # CON 13 (=15-2) # INT 10 # WIS 12 # CHA 10 #


    METHOD 2 -- "LOWER BASELINE, POSITIVE ADJUSTMENTS ONLY":
    Give Elves +2 DEX & +2 WIS, but lower the point-buy by 4 to 24 instead of 28, because we're giving out 2 bonuses of 2 for a net gain of 4, instead of leaving it balanced at 0 with a +2 canceling out a -2.

    To get those SAME FINAL SCORES, SUBTRACT both bonuses to get point-buy scores of:
    # STR 10 # DEX 16 (=18-2) # CON 13 # INT 10 # WIS 10 (=12-2) # CHA 10 #

    For that, the point-buy in 3E terms would be 2+10+5+2+2+2 = 23, not the 24 that we would expect by subtracting 4 from 28.

    Where did the extra point go? It's that 15 we started with: it cost 2 buy points to raise from 14, but took only 1 adjustment point to drop it back down to 14 when we were converting from "negatives" to "lower baseline, positive only."
    Original Member of the Rouseketeers! ("mmnnaarrrrrrrrr")
    "I'll take sitting around on my laurels because my character died any day over feeling like regardless of what I do, my character can't fail no matter what." -- Hobo

  • + Log in or register to post
    Page 20 of 27 FirstFirst ... 101112131415161718192021222324252627 LastLast

    Similar Threads

    1. Rethinking Ability Scores and Skills
      By DonAdam in forum D&D 5th Edition
      Replies: 3
      Last Post: Tuesday, 28th May, 2013, 12:54 PM
    2. Replies: 260
      Last Post: Thursday, 16th February, 2012, 06:38 PM
    3. Replies: 42
      Last Post: Monday, 6th February, 2012, 02:16 AM
    4. Replies: 68
      Last Post: Tuesday, 31st January, 2012, 09:31 PM
    5. Anyone use associated ability scores for skills?
      By s-dub in forum Older D&D Editions and OSR Gaming
      Replies: 6
      Last Post: Sunday, 17th February, 2008, 02:10 AM

    Posting Permissions

    • You may not post new threads
    • You may not post replies
    • You may not post attachments
    • You may not edit your posts
    •