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  1. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by Falling Icicle View Post
    If they deliberately design an item to stack with other AC boosting items, they can put that in the item's rules. There can always be exceptions to general rules. Right now, the general rule is that AC bonuses all stack and an item must specifically state that it doesn't stack, as with the ring of protection. I just want to reverse that, and have the general rule be that they don't stack unless the item specifically says otherwise. No "design space" would be closed off by doing that.
    I'm not sure if I agree or disagree. What I do care about is that the armor bonus be defined in the story. One thing that third edition did well with it's keywords is to give a sense of what the magic bonus is doing for you. A deflection bonus is a force field. An enhancement bonus makes your armor stronger. Preventing abuse matters, but I also want effects that would sensibly stack to stack.
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    The comments on the belts also make me think it's wierd that an 18-20 str fighter, when the party is deciding (together) who it should go to depending on how it would benefit the party the most, is almost undoubtedly towards someone with lower strength to begin with. So, higher order belts to the already strong character, and lower ones to the mid-strength characters who can actually use it.

    Not sure if that's a bug or a feature. At first glance, a belt of Giant Strength should go to the party fighter, but on second thought, giving a bump of 8 points of strength to the war cleric instead of maybe 2 to the fighter, would seem to be far more worthwhile. And if you only ever encounter one belt in your adventuring days? Well, voila, the cleric with a middling strength spends a substantial portion of the campaign as the strongest character.

    Do not want. I'm thinking the belts should give either the minimum strength listed, or a + to the current value, whichever amounts to the higher. So a 19 str fighter with a hill giant strength belt is still seeing at least a modest boost to his attack roll.

    This may seem like kind of "gamist" and munkinney thinking, until you realize that optimizing the party's output is a smart thing to do, and if giving all but the fire or storm giant belts to the second-strongest person in the group is a common practice, you'll know it's a fail from a rules POV. A magic belt that makes a weak man stronger should make a strong man stronger too, to my mind. Maybe not as staggeringly so, but there should be *some* benefit to wearing it, regardless of your natural strength.

    Such as you can wield heavier weapons or larger weapons, suitable for giants perhaps!! that, I could live with.

  • #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by Falling Icicle View Post
    Second, without a general stacking rule, there is no limit on player AC. Players can effectively have an infinite AC, the only limit on it being the number of items they are able to obtain. Even in 3e with its infamous christmas tree effect and several different keywords, there was still an effective limit on how high players can go. Right now, 5e is even more liberal in allowing high ACs than 3.x was, and that's saying alot. In 5e, there is no limit to how high it can go. None.
    Maybe not a clear hard limit but there's something pretty close.

    The best armour you can get is what, +3 Plate? +5? Best shield is +3? Plate armour defeats Dex. to some extent, so the best you'll likely get there is (to be generous) another +3. Rings etc. don't work with armour, so they're out. Let's be really nice and chuck in a +3 Defender, all on defense, as well.

    That gives, if my math is right, an AC of 30. (if the Plate is +5)

    Let's try the armourless route. Bracers, historically, have gone as low as AC 2; that's 18 in newspeak. Ring of Protection doesn't usually get better than +5. If Dex. is capped at 20 there's another +5 assuming (again generously) 3e-style bonuses. What else? Oh yeah, the Defender, again at +3 all to defense.

    By my rough reckoning that gives AC 31.

    From these, it seems there's a soft cap at about 30-31 that one would have to work pretty hard to exceed.
    And it's not just AC, either. Nothing is stopping people from having any number of stat-boosting ioun stones orbiting their head, either, allowing people to have effectively infinite ability scores, even though natural ability scores cap at 20.
    Well, nothing stops people other than cost, and rarity, and everybody else wanting them too...

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  • #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by Falling Icicle View Post
    Have I not provided enough thoughtful analysis (even if you disagree with it) to demonstrate that my reaction isn't "kneejerk" and that I'm not "panicking?" You seem to be implying that my position is irrational and purely based on emotion. It's not.
    It is kneejerk because instead of looking for were the problems actually lie you react by screaming "AC 26 is to high! We need bonuses to not stack as the default!" You have not actually examined

    As for the stats of higher level monsters that we haven't seen yet, I have two things to say about that. First, the bounded accuracy design philosophy that they're using promises that high level monsters will not have vastly greater stats than lower level monsters. Assuming that they mean what they've said about that, we can expect the difference in attack bonuses and AC between low and high level monsters to be much smaller than in the past.
    True, but high level monsters will have better stats and it does not seem unreasonable that a Ancient Red Dragon or Demon Lord would have a total to-hit of +12 or +15.

    Second, without a general stacking rule, there is no limit on player AC. Players can effectively have an infinite AC, the only limit on it being the number of items they are able to obtain. Even in 3e with its infamous christmas tree effect and several different keywords, there was still an effective limit on how high players can go. Right now, 5e is even more liberal in allowing high ACs than 3.x was, and that's saying alot. In 5e, there is no limit to how high it can go. None.
    No apparent limit is different from no real limit. 3.X had an apparent limit, but in actuality it had no real limit because of the ease of creating new bonus types and there was no hard limit on how big a bonus could be. 5e currently has no apparent limit, but outside of using Ioun Stones it currently has a real limit.

    And it's not just AC, either. Nothing is stopping people from having any number of stat-boosting ioun stones orbiting their head, either, allowing people to have effectively infinite ability scores, even though natural ability scores cap at 20.
    This is an actual problem that all of the bonus granting Ioun Stones have, and this problem can simply be fixed by preventing Ioun Stones of the same color or those that grant the same bonus from stacking.

    "Multiplicative" is not a word I used. What I said was that two items that stack can have a bigger impact than either item would by itself.
    "Multiplicative" synergy is synergy that is as you said "greater than the sum of their parts," and I'm not seeing it. I'm seeing additive bonuses and several non-stacking bonuses but no bonuses that are greater than the sum of their parts.

    Not all magic armor has + bonuses either, elven chain being one example. I don't know whether they intend to have +X shields or not. I hope they don't. I was only mentioning it as a possibility.

    If they deliberately design an item to stack with other AC boosting items, they can put that in the item's rules. There can always be exceptions to general rules. Right now, the general rule is that AC bonuses all stack and an item must specifically state that it doesn't stack, as with the ring of protection. I just want to reverse that, and have the general rule be that they don't stack unless the item specifically says otherwise. No "design space" would be closed off by doing that.
    The problem with that is that if bonuses do not stack at default then everything that grants bonuses that you want to stack (spells, abilities, magic items etc.) you want to stack you have to include the exception in their text. There are far more things that should stack than ones that should not stack.

  • #65
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    On Belts, perhaps the belts only allow you to go above 20 if you're already at 20 (Attunement requirement)? Anything lower is just brought to 20.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gorgoroth View Post
    The comments on the belts also make me think it's wierd that an 18-20 str fighter, when the party is deciding (together) who it should go to depending on how it would benefit the party the most, is almost undoubtedly towards someone with lower strength to begin with. So, higher order belts to the already strong character, and lower ones to the mid-strength characters who can actually use it.
    This one time, playing 2E, I had a F/M/T with 18/50-something strength.

    We were running a round-robin DM game, so each player would take a turn DMing a game or three. My brother was running the game, and based it around having his PC (Fighter/Magic-User) charmed. My PC and the human Thief (with 10-14 STR if I remember correctly) found that "PC" and rescued him, though he was in a bad way at the time.

    He also had gauntlets of ogre strength. Which we took off of him and gave to the Thief.

    Then we proceeded to kill most of the bad guys in a Wall of Fog. The Thief was very effective, much more so than if my PC (who was more Fighter than him) had used the gauntlets.

    But in general play there was a reason why the Fighter/Magic-User had those gauntlets instead of the Thief. He had the HP and the attacks/THAC0 to make better use of them.
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  • #67
    Quote Originally Posted by nightwalker450 View Post
    On Belts, perhaps the belts only allow you to go above 20 if you're already at 20 (Attunement requirement)? Anything lower is just brought to 20.

    It seems 20 is the limit, but if the DM wants to throw in Storm Giant Str, bam, done.

  • #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by Falling Icicle View Post
    I'm hoping there won't be +X shields at all. That said, it wouldn't be a big deal if their magical bonus didn't stack with that from armor or other AC enhancement items.
    I think I'd like to see shields add their enhancement bonus to Reflex saves instead of AC. It would simulate the bringing up the shield to cover yourself from a fireball or what have you.

  • #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ultimatecalibur View Post
    It is kneejerk because instead of looking for were the problems actually lie you react by screaming "AC 26 is to high! We need bonuses to not stack as the default!" You have not actually examined
    "Screaming?" I didn't put my post in all caps, did I?

    But seriously, I'm not sure what I've said that gives you cause to say I'm being hysterical and unwilling to examine the facts. We can disagree with each other without being rude about it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ultimatecalibur View Post
    True, but high level monsters will have better stats and it does not seem unreasonable that a Ancient Red Dragon or Demon Lord would have a total to-hit of +12 or +15.
    We'll see. I'd rather the attack bonuses not go that high. It's kind of hard to see how a bunch of orcs are supposed to challenge a high level party when they need ACs in the mid 20s to have a decent defense against higher level monsters. The DM could have like 50 orcs attack you and roll in the hopes of getting a 20, but rolling all of those attacks doesn't sound very fun to me. Bounded accuracy doesn't work if the accuracy isn't, you know, bounded.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ultimatecalibur View Post
    No apparent limit is different from no real limit. 3.X had an apparent limit, but in actuality it had no real limit because of the ease of creating new bonus types and there was no hard limit on how big a bonus could be. 5e currently has no apparent limit, but outside of using Ioun Stones it currently has a real limit.
    You say you could just create new keywords with ease in 3.x, but in 5e you can just create new items with ease. So how is it that 5e's limit is more "real" than 3.x's?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ultimatecalibur View Post
    This is an actual problem that all of the bonus granting Ioun Stones have, and this problem can simply be fixed by preventing Ioun Stones of the same color or those that grant the same bonus from stacking.
    So you at least agree with me that those shouldn't stack. That's progress.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ultimatecalibur View Post
    "Multiplicative" synergy is synergy that is as you said "greater than the sum of their parts," and I'm not seeing it. I'm seeing additive bonuses and several non-stacking bonuses but no bonuses that are greater than the sum of their parts.
    From a purely mathematical point of view, bonuses are just the sum of their parts. From a game design standpoint, however, once you allow things to stack beyond a certain threshold, the likelihood of the players being hit just becomes so unlikely that the game ceases to be challenging and, for most people, fun. I don't know very many people who would think it's fun to only be able to hit (or be hit) on a roll of 20.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ultimatecalibur View Post
    The problem with that is that if bonuses do not stack at default then everything that grants bonuses that you want to stack (spells, abilities, magic items etc.) you want to stack you have to include the exception in their text. There are far more things that should stack than ones that should not stack.
    Advantage doesn't stack, despite there being quite a few things that grant it. There are good reasons for that, and there are just as many good reasons why magical AC bonuses shouldn't stack.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ultimatecalibur View Post
    "Multiplicative" synergy is synergy that is as you said "greater than the sum of their parts," and I'm not seeing it. I'm seeing additive bonuses and several non-stacking bonuses but no bonuses that are greater than the sum of their parts.
    Perhaps I can help you, here.

    Let us take an example character who, without "bonus" protection, is hit by a monster's attacks 60% of the time. In this state, we can say that they will last out against the monster's attacks for a number of rounds, N.

    Now suppose they get a defence bonus of 20%, such that they are now hit by the monster's attacks only 40% of the time. We'll assume that, with this bonus, the monster's attacks still deal the same damage, so the character will now, on average, last 1.5N rounds before falling to the same monster.

    Finally, let's suppose that the character acquires another 20% defensive bonus that stacks with the first. The character is now hit by the monster's attacks only 20% of the time (60 - 20 - 20). If the second bonus were merely "additive", we would expect the character to last 2.0N rounds against the monster, given that a single bonus allowed them to last 1.5N rounds. If the bonus were even "multiplicative", we could expect the character to last 2.25N rounds (1.5 * 1.5 times as long as with no bonus). But in fact it's even more extreme than multiplicative. The character with two bonuses actually lasts, on average, 3N rounds against the same monster attacks. By (at least) one measure of "effectiveness", therefore, the two bonuses are beyond "multiplicative" - they are highly exponential. This, I think, is where @Falling Icicle perceives a problem, especially if the system is supposedly based on the concept of "bounded accuracy".
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