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Thread: Here Comes . . . the Monk!
Wednesday, 14th November, 2012, 09:23 PM #81
Myrmidon (Lvl 10)
The whole reason Deadly Strike seemed so cool at first glance was because it gave the fighter a source of heavy, reliable damage that was unparalleled by other classes - and that existed in tension with an equally powerful damage mitigation power, also unrivaled. When other classes could beat out the fighter in damage, they did so through their own completely different mechanics. Spellcasters blew daily spells, rogues positioned themselves for sneak attacks, etc. I was excited at that point to see the unique and interesting way other martial classes would stand up to the fighter in damage. Would the ranger have a Quarry mechanic to let him excel at single-target damage? Would the monk use his lightning-fast attacks to build up punishing combo strikes?
Now, not so much. Everyone does weapon+3d10 damage at tenth level, maybe with some variations or preconditions. If you're a rogue, you have to be flanking; if you're a monk, you roll more attacks. /grumpy
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Wednesday, 14th November, 2012, 09:48 PM #82
Superhero (Lvl 15)
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Now I don't want you to agree with this, but IMHO a Monk class would be great if it would be versatile by offering different philosophies (in a campaign setting, these could be tied to specific monasteries, but this is perhaps not very feasible in a settings-free core book). Just like Wizards have Traditions, Fighters have Styles etc., Monks could have philosophies roughly inspired by Shaolin temples, Zen buddhism, Taoism, something related to Hinduism, Shinto... and this could be reflected in different mechanics: "ki" for some, meditations for others, even spell-like abilities for someone else. If this was the setup, there really shouldn't be any alignment restriction on the whole class, perhaps on some of its subchoices.
Otherwise if the Monk class is not versatile, it could just become a Fighter's Fighting Style: it already uses the same ED mechanics, and "ki" could be a Specialty with "Lawful" as requirement for its feat.
The dedication and discipline needed to learn martial arts actually require you to actually spend a great deal of time looking at your inner self and practicing/experimenting on your own, and then with your peers. Of course you normally have a "master" to trust blindly, but this is not enough to actually require you to be lawful towards everyone else. We might have a certain image of monks temples in the real world which are very regimented to the point that a non-lawful character may feel it unbearable to live there, just because he would dislike strict hierarchies and invasive rules, but this doesn't have to be the case. There are aspects in real-life or fiction martial arts that suggests a more chaotic approach, such as some elements in Bruce Lee's philosophy of Jeet-Kune-Do, or the Drunken Master fighting style.
"There is no survival without order, there is no evolution without chaos."
"You have to see past the RAW to understand the rules of the game."
"And rules are OVERRATED by the way!
Wednesday, 14th November, 2012, 10:11 PM #83
Myrmidon (Lvl 10)
Yes, I expect to see some sort of Smite progression on damage akin to Deadly Strike. It might not even be dice-based, though. Beyond that I expect some static resistance or immunity progression like the monk and a limited number of divine magic spells - mostly words of power or spells he can cast against the victim of his Smite as a follow-up. It seems kind of appropriate for him to combine some limited, simplified functionality from the Cleric and the Fighter and then have his own unique Smite shtick and a few bolted-on cookies.
Oh, and he'll probably be able to summon a Sacred Cow ... er ... Paladin's Mount, just 'cause.
The thing is, every edition prior to 4th Edition has needed some way for the "hit it with a stick" type characters to make up for the fact that they didn't do 10d6 damage in a 20 foot radius with a single action or just get to tell people "save or die," all the time. Success in that field has been limited.Now, not so much. Everyone does weapon+3d10 damage at tenth level, maybe with some variations or preconditions. If you're a rogue, you have to be flanking; if you're a monk, you roll more attacks. /grumpy
On top of that, flatter attack math and the objective of speeding combat have made damage escalation more necessary. While the return of Vancian casting means some spells are probably getting reigned in, I think they are better off with a more-carrot, less-stick approach. Bringing the Grogs up to snuff with a simple core mechanic that can be shared across several basic classes and diversified is probably less divisive than putting all the Magicians to the stake.
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Wednesday, 14th November, 2012, 10:14 PM #84
Thaumaturgist (Lvl 9)
As for 4E-think, I'm staring at the Mythic Adventures playtest for PF, and wondering when they took a sip of the 4E kool-aid. Many of those abilities are refluffed 4E powers. >_<
Wednesday, 14th November, 2012, 10:20 PM #85
Thaumaturgist (Lvl 9)
Twitter comments from @MikeM earls
"So, the monk was a quick turnaround because it used maneuvers. Don't expect paladin, ranger, or "redactedx3"
to use them via class features."
"It's likely maneuvers will end up something that you can gain via feats, somewhat like you can gain spells via feats."
"Also, regarding monk alignment restrictions - we'll just use feedback to find a direction. Easier to include it and ask for feedback."
"I have to admit whenever we start a new project, I want to give it a name like Project Puppy or Operation Sir Snuggles-A-Lot"
Ok, the last one was just giggle-worthy.
Wednesday, 14th November, 2012, 10:30 PM #86
Myrmidon (Lvl 10)
Yes, which is why rogues need Sneak Attack, rangers need Quarry, monks need Flurry of Blows, etc. But that doesn't mean all those things have to share exactly the same mechanics.The thing is, every edition prior to 4th Edition has needed some way for the "hit it with a stick" type characters to make up for the fact that they didn't do 10d6 damage in a 20 foot radius with a single action or just get to tell people "save or die," all the time. Success in that field has been limited.
On top of that, flatter attack math and the objective of speeding combat have made damage escalation more necessary. While the return of Vancian casting means some spells are probably getting reigned in, I think they are better off with a more-carrot, less-stick approach.
For example: maybe monks could do a few quick attacks per round, with a "combo finisher" move if they all hit. Rangers do escalating damage for each consecutive round they target the same enemy. Paladins use up some of their divine energy to smite enemies, unless those enemies are attacking their allies or innocents (or are demons/undead/etc). Warlords get a bonus to damage for each ally that has struck their target since their last turn. Barbarians work themselves into a rage as they take hits in combat.
Some of those effects COULD be squeezed into the expertise dice system, but why? Expertise dice are great for expressing the combat versatility required of a fighter (every six seconds he has to pick the best possible option to keep himself and his friends alive for the NEXT six seconds), but they don't do anything to model the pre-planning and opportunism of the rogue, the focus and skill of the ranger, the mystical power of the monk, the tactics of the warlord, the rage of the barbarian, the divine inspiration of the paladin, and so on.
Wednesday, 14th November, 2012, 10:35 PM #87
Myrmidon (Lvl 10)
That makes me happy, although I feel like a maneuver-based redactedx3 could work well."So, the monk was a quick turnaround because it used maneuvers. Don't expect paladin, ranger, or "redactedx3" to use them via class features."
And I guess you just get 1d4 die to use it with? I guess that's fine, especially since all the damage-dealing ones are class-specific. (He also mentioned in his feed that Parry will be fighter-specific again, which is good.)"It's likely maneuvers will end up something that you can gain via feats, somewhat like you can gain spells via feats."
Wednesday, 14th November, 2012, 11:22 PM #88
Guide (Lvl 11)
Everyone is weird, but those who are weird in the same way call themselves normal.
Thursday, 15th November, 2012, 01:14 PM #89
The Great Druid (Lvl 17)
And all for what? I just don't see the upside.
Thursday, 15th November, 2012, 01:53 PM #90
I get a real "blah" feeling about it. Expertise dice. Whee.