DrSpunj's Class Balance Spreadsheet - Page 15
Page 15 of 22 FirstFirst ... 5678910111213141516171819202122 LastLast
Results 141 to 150 of 213
  1. #141

    Acolyte (Lvl 2)



    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    North Liberty, IA
    Posts
    821
    Quote Originally Posted by SSquirrel
    Any chance you could forward me that info as well? Would be interesting to see the other things that go along with that system.
    I'll try and remember; I only have access to it at home, and I only tend to check this thread while I'm at work!

    Quote Originally Posted by SSquirrel
    Hmm....I'm not entirely sure I personally would do the 1 at 1st level and 3 every level thereafter. I mean yeah it would show that its easier to start with more weapons than it is to learn them down the road, but I almost think it would make more sense to just have WP slots cost 2 each. That's just my desire to never have changing costs.
    The problem I have doing it that way is then you can "beat the system". Most other things you can buy at 1st level give you more than they do at later levels.
    • HD - maxed at 1st level
    • BAB - Have to buy at 1st level if you want a Full BAB
    • Defense - can likely be purchased a level or two later if you're buying it up at all, though you can buy it up to +2 at 1st level, thereafter can only increase by +1 max
    • Saves - can only buy up to +2 at 1st level, thereafter can only increase by +1 max for each save
    • Skill Points - x4 at 1st level
    • Feats & Magic - if you don't buy them, you don't have them!


    If Proficiency groups for Weapons & Armor cost a flat rate at all levels then there's very little reason why anyone would buy them with their 1st level CPs. They could instead buy up any number of things and get by at 1st level with a Club. Having more of anything in that list is arguably a far better deal than being able to use a Light Mace, let alone a Short Sword or Battle Axe.

    If they are cheaper up front (and 1 CP vs 3 CPs is significant when you're talking about only having 11 CPs to spend at each level past 1st) then there is real incentive to put a few points there. Maybe not as many as you would like, but I at least appreciate having the warriors of the world be somewhat different in that they aren't all proficient with every single blasted martial weapon in the world. I like the fact that one warrior may know how to use axes, clubs & spears but disdains (and isn't proficient with) swords. <shrug> YMMV.

    Quote Originally Posted by SSquirrel
    I've been real busy lately and just now got around to downloading the new version of your sheet so I'll look at it later.
    Cool. Look forward to your thoughts.

    Quote Originally Posted by SSquirrel
    I really don't think that its an excessive bit as done in the Core rules. I mean if someone wastes all of their feat slots in regular 3E on Extra Rage they have someone who can Rage like mad but has few other tricks really.
    If you're going to make them singles make them cost only 2. I would go ahead and keep it like the Core rules have it with 2 and 4 for the various feats.
    I don't have a problem with it either balance-wise, but if my system only gives you +1 Rage per day as an Expansion feat, I can't really allow the "Extra Rage" feat (even at the Base feat cost) that gives you +2 uses per day at the same time. No one would ever take the former. Still, I'll likely just keep it the way it is because of how well things worked out and just chalk it up to the cost of drastically more versatility with this system.

    Thanks.

  2. #142

    Cutpurse (Lvl 5)



    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    louisville ky
    Posts
    1,818
    Quote Originally Posted by DrSpunj
    The problem I have doing it that way is then you can "beat the system". Most other things you can buy at 1st level give you more than they do at later levels.

    • HD - maxed at 1st level
    • BAB - Have to buy at 1st level if you want a Full BAB
    • Defense - can likely be purchased a level or two later if you're buying it up at all, though you can buy it up to +2 at 1st level, thereafter can only increase by +1 max
    • Saves - can only buy up to +2 at 1st level, thereafter can only increase by +1 max for each save
    • Skill Points - x4 at 1st level
    • Feats & Magic - if you don't buy them, you don't have them!

    If Proficiency groups for Weapons & Armor cost a flat rate at all levels then there's very little reason why anyone would buy them with their 1st level CPs. They could instead buy up any number of things and get by at 1st level with a Club. Having more of anything in that list is arguably a far better deal than being able to use a Light Mace, let alone a Short Sword or Battle Axe.

    I like the fact that one warrior may know how to use axes, clubs & spears but disdains (and isn't proficient with) swords. <shrug> YMMV.
    Oh trust me I like seeing some variety in the warriors as well. Actually having it cost 1 at 1st level and 3 later will discourage differences. Allow me to explain. People interested in gaming the system will ALWAYS do so and in a piecemeal style point buy system, it is the law of the land. If they can spend just a few points on the "best" weapons (Longbow or heavy crossbow for ranged and 2 hand sword for melee) they'll stop there and never spend more. If they cost 1 then that's 2 points spent. If they cost 2 that's 4 points. If _I_ was going to game the system like that and had a different cost at different levels, I would definitely blow them at 1st level and never gain more weapon profs.


    I guess like we've seen several times already, our thoughts just won't mesh on everything. I think that while some things like skills just sort of HAVE to have a front loaded benefit, I don't think EVERYTHING needs one. Ranger was improved in 3.5 b/c front loading was removed and it was fleshed out better. I'd actually be curious to see a "gamed" vs a "non-gamed" fighter type trying for the same basic skillset. Let's say you're shooting for a good swashbuckler type guy and plan for things like 2 handed fighting etc. How much of a difference will it make for this guy to have 1 or 2 pt cost at 1st level and 3 or 2 at levels after that? I'm expecting the gamed guy to start off slightly weaker b/c he buys all his WPs (or most) at 1st level and thus saves more points towards future stuff he wants. The 2pt flat cost will probably start with fewer weapon choices and possibly slightly stronger to begin with, but ends up behind the other guy cuz he saved points by getting all his WPs at first level.


    The flat cost actually encourages character growth along the way in their weapon development, whereas a scaled cost does not.



    Of course, that's just my thoughts on it all. Feel free to disagree *grin*


    Hagen

  3. #143

    Cutpurse (Lvl 5)



    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    louisville ky
    Posts
    1,818
    So I was finally looking at the new version of the spreadsheet and wondered a couple of things:

    1)If the guy who made that formula for converting spell levels is cool with it (and I think you said he is) why not go ahead and wrap that in as an extra page?

    2)Why is the Cleric not getting the Turn Undead ability until 5th level?

    3)I really like the fact that you have atable explaining the choices at the top of the character pages. Makes much more sense instead of trying to guess what each level of purchasing really means.

    4)For those interested, here is a mana system:

    Bonus mana points are given based on the Attribute table, with 0 level spells providing 1 extra mana point each. 0 level spells can be cast freely at no cost, however, healing magic of 0 level can only be utilized on the same person 3 times per day.

    You receive one point for each spell level you are able to cast. So an 18 Intelligence would give 1 bonus spell of 0-4th level. A 3rd level caster would only gain the benefit of the 0-2nd level spells (total of 4 extra points) while the 7th level caster would receive the full 11.

    (Note:I'll decide on a mana regeneration rate later. Want to look at a few different systems to decide. Easy version is do the math to see what percentage of your points has regenerated yet and drop all fractions and say that many have recovered.)

    (Note:These tables will show additional points each level, rather than the ongoing total, also the spells readied at one time table is still used with this system)

    Half Caster:

    1 2
    2 1
    3 1
    4 1
    5 2
    6 2
    7 1
    8 4
    9 3
    10 2
    11 5
    12 4
    13 3
    14 7
    15 5
    16 4
    17 9
    18 6
    19 5
    20 11

    Full Caster:

    1 4
    2 2
    3 2
    4 3
    5 4
    6 5
    7 5
    8 8
    9 7
    10 10
    11 9
    12 13
    13 12
    14 16
    15 15
    16 19
    17 18
    18 22
    19 11
    20 22

    I'm debating that casters get their spell attribute bonus per level as well (or maybe half of it for half casters) but I'm not sure if that woul be unbalancing.

    Hagen

  4. #144

    Acolyte (Lvl 2)



    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    North Liberty, IA
    Posts
    821
    Quote Originally Posted by SSquirrel
    1)If the guy who made that formula for converting spell levels is cool with it (and I think you said he is) why not go ahead and wrap that in as an extra page?
    If it was an extra page/sheet I'd do it happily. And I could probably include a sheet with all the tables and text explaining what to do with them, but the separate spreadsheet I came up with and attached to this thread a couple pages back is spread over ~6 sheets of its own. I'm not a real Excel guru by any means. I know you can Hide some columns and sheets and stuff but I'm not that savvy. I'd rather make each file very straightforward and give my players multiple files than hand over one big file and confuse them with which sheets they have to pay attention to. YMMV, but it's easy enough to copy everything from the Spell spreadsheet into the Balance spreadsheet if you want to. Should work fine.

    Oh, except that...I need to fix that spreadsheet when I find some time. It doesn't do any checking with your bonus spells to make sure you can actually cast spells of that level before adding in your bonus spells from your casting ability. This is most readily apparent when you have just a single level of Basic or Advanced Magic and enter an Ability score of 18. According to the numbers that are calculated you can cast a single spell of 2nd, 3rd & 4th levels! I'll work on it when I find some time and then post the updated sheet(s). I just need to make sure there aren't any levels in there where a bonus spell would actually allow you to cast the next higher level of spells like Core does with the Paladin & Ranger advancement. I don't think so but I haven't checked either.

    Quote Originally Posted by SSquirrel
    2)Why is the Cleric not getting the Turn Undead ability until 5th level?
    The easy answer is: because he doesn't have the points available until 5th level!

    The harder answer is, of course, more difficult. You can argue that the system of values I came up with should have been balanced to allow the Cleric to get all his Divine Casting abilities, 2 Domains and Turn Undead all at 1st level. You can say that, I'll just disagree with you.

    The Cleric is at either at the top of the class heap power-wise, or perhaps comes in just behind the Druid. I've seen the vast majority of people here at EN World agree with that statement in a multitude of threads more than not by a large margin. Either way, when attempting to bring all the classes more in line with each other using a system like this the Cleric was going to lose some things.

    Now, you can choose to rebalance the Cleric differently, of course, but I chose to drop the Fort save down to Average and trim away a few of his Proficiency groups. (Realize he also gets a single Martial Weapon Group--a bonus, but if you'd rather pick up Medium Armor Proficiency or Shield Proficiency be my guest!)

    Either way, because of the way the points worked out I was forced to wait until 5th level to give him his third class ability. He's supposed to get 2 Domains and Turn Undead at 1st level according to Core. Since Domains give you nifty abilities along with extra Spell Slots & Readied Spells each day I figured that was a no-brainer when compared to an ability that is only useful when the DM decides it is, and even then it may not be a good option to actually try. In a campaign with lots of low-level undead then it's easy enough to take Turn Undead at 1st level and wait on another Domain until later. If having 2 Domains and Turn Undead is very important to you at 1st level then figure out what other things you're going to give up. Your HD? A few Saves? Only Basic Magic? It may be easier/better to pick the 3rd ability up at 2nd level when you've already underspent by 3 points; then you only have to find 2 more, but you've only bought a d8 and Advanced Magic so it's still not straightforward.

    I admit that it gets tough, but the Druid & the Cleric get trimmed under this system because they are up there. The only way to give them all three abilities at 1st level along with pretty much everything else Core gives them is to use the Cleric as the new "standard" and adjust all the other classes accordingly. That's not a power upgrade I feel is necessary or willing to play with personally. <shrug>

    Quote Originally Posted by SSquirrel
    3)I really like the fact that you have a table explaining the choices at the top of the character pages. Makes much more sense instead of trying to guess what each level of purchasing really means.
    Good, I'm glad that's helpful. I wondered about putting it on one of the intro pages then basing all the calculations off that and pulling them into the class sheets. I didn't do it because I liked being able to use the horizontal split slider bar to keep the value table in view at the top while messing around down below.

    I know it would be far slicker if there were Cell Menus where you could only select between the 3 or 4 options for each Cell, but I don't know how to do that and haven't picked up the Excel for Dummies yet to figure it out. If anyone wanted to teach me how I'd be very interested...

    Quote Originally Posted by SSquirrel
    4)For those interested, here is a mana system:
    Good to see you still working on this, both for ouini's sake if he's going to go with it and because I like to see a variety of potential options for people to pick from (since I know not everything is going to do things as I want to).

    Thanks.

    DrSpunj

  5. #145

    Acolyte (Lvl 2)



    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    North Liberty, IA
    Posts
    821
    Quote Originally Posted by DrSpunj
    Oh, except that...I need to fix that spreadsheet when I find some time. <snip> I just need to make sure there aren't any levels in there where a bonus spell would actually allow you to cast the next higher level of spells like Core does with the Paladin & Ranger advancement. I don't think so but I haven't checked either.
    And sure enough, I was wrong. The Mage Blade progression that I'm basing Basic Magic on does indeed give access to higher level spells with a high casting ability score, starting right off at level 1!

    But, the good news is the fix only took about 3 whole minutes of work. Please let me know if you find any errors. I've attached the new versions here. [EDIT: See Post #155 below!]

    Thanks.

    DrSpunj
    Last edited by DrSpunj; Friday, 20th August, 2004 at 08:32 PM.

  6. #146

    Novice (Lvl 1)



    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    North Liberty, Iowa
    Posts
    81
    SSquirrel: I probably wasn't the only person to notice a while ago that, overall, the mana advancement table for a regular (full) caster that you posted above comes out almost exactly to:
    - at first level, you get 2-4 points of mana,
    - after first, whenever you gain a level, add your new level to your mana pool.
    - ...and half casters get about half that.

    I'm using this technique, instead of tables which are derived from core tables (which were in turn quite possibly extrapolated from a "gain your level in mana" rule of thumb), because there's no question or hassle each level.
    * half caster? Gain half your level in mana.
    * full caster? Gain your level in mana.

    This is the simplicity for which I think it will be all right to trade in the traditional table-based (or newly generated and carefully balanced new tables-based) system, for a mana-based system.


    DrSpunj: After playing with the Excel files for a while, I can say I agree that at least for the non-spellcasting classes, the system looks and feels quite balanced. For the spellcasters, I think it should be balanced, but I have to admit I still don't understand how to use the 1/2 or full caster tables to derive your spells each level. That is, I get that you can just cheat and use the cool "Total Spells" tool that tells you, but I don't grok its derivation. I did once, when I first read that guy's article/proposal, but have since lost the thread.

  7. #147

    Acolyte (Lvl 2)



    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    North Liberty, IA
    Posts
    821
    Quote Originally Posted by ouini
    DrSpunj: After playing with the Excel files for a while, I can say I agree that at least for the non-spellcasting classes, the system looks and feels quite balanced. For the spellcasters, I think it should be balanced, but I have to admit I still don't understand how to use the 1/2 or full caster tables to derive your spells each level. That is, I get that you can just cheat and use the cool "Total Spells" tool that tells you, but I don't grok its derivation. I did once, when I first read that guy's article/proposal, but have since lost the thread.
    Here's the original link where I got it:
    http://home.pacbell.net/jdchambe/Arc...rogression.doc

    His derivations are really pretty simple. If you compare the Magister and Mage Blade tables (what I'm using for Advanced/Full & Basic/Half magic, respectively) you'll notice that at 20th level the latter gives you roughly as much magic as the former does at around 12-13 levels. So saying half-magic is really a misnomer, since it's closer to 3/5 magic. Regardless, this guy simply tried to find a way to mix & merge levels of both and come up with a reasonably close approximation. To do that he's come up with a nifty mechanic that really approximates a Base Magic level to be equal to 2/3 of an Advanced Magic level.

    You start out by looking at the Basic Magic/Mage Blade tables and find the row designated by however many levels of that type you have. That tells you how many base spells you have from your Basic Magic levels. You do the same with the Advanced/Magister tables for those levels.

    His final part involves figuring out how many additional spells you get by mixing classes/types of magic. He does that with the Base Magic Power (BMP) mechanic. By multiplying any levels of Advanced Magic by 3, and multiplying any levels of Basic Magic by 2, and adding them together you come up with the BMP for that PC. You then find the proper row corresponding to your BMP level (it ranges from 2-60 representing 1 level of Basic Magic all the way up to 20 levels of Advanced Magic) and add those spells to your previous total.

    Voila! You've now got 3 rows of spells representing your Basic Magic (Mage Blade) spells, your Advanced Magic (Magister) spells, and those from combining the two with the BMP mechanic. Add each column together to find out how many total 0-level, 1st-level, etc. spells you have.

    He's reverse-engineered them so that if you stick with all Basic Magic or all Advanced Magic the combination of using that particular table plus the appropriate BMP gives you the proper number of spells as listed in Monte's AU in the tables.

    So it works well if you don't mind the 2/3 fudge factor for the BMP mechanic. By that I mean a level of Basic Magic is really only worth a little more than 3/5 (0.6+) as I said above, but not as much as the 2/3 (.667) he's using here, so Basic Magic is a bit overvalued with his system. Still, that meshes very well with the prices as I have them since Basic Magic costs 4 CPs per level and Advanced Magic costs 7 CPs per level, so you're only paying for it as if it were worth 4/7 (which is .57).

    All in all I'm very happy with how it's all come together!

    My last big hurdle is trying to simplify the ability prereqs. I really kind of like what d20 Modern did, and especially most of Wulf's adjustments with his Grim Tales book. There they call class abilities Talents because you can only pick them up at odd levels and they had to differentiate them from Feats which you get at every even level.

    Now, I don't feel compelled to keep that distinction but I think I may borrow the underlying mechanic it represents, namely that stackable abilities you can only get every other level. Sneak Attack, for instance, is already limited this way, as is Rage. I think it's a pretty straightforward to make that a general rule and I can't see that Wildshape or any number of other abilities would be broken as long as you couldn't take it the first time too early.

    The other thing d20 Modern did that looks nifty is create 6 "classes", each one based upon one of the six ability scores. They are Strong, Fast, Tough, Smart, Dedicated and Charismatic. Each of them allows access to specific Talent Trees. For instance, you can pick up Rage and Damage Reduction by taking some levels of Tough. Again, I'm not interested in keeping the classes here, but it's pretty straightforward to convert all the Class-Specific Talent Trees into Ability score prerequisites rather than the labels they use in d20 Modern. By that I mean, to pick up Rage you'd need a Con score of at least 13. To choose the Charismatic Hero's Charm ability you'd need a Charisma of at least 13. Thanee is suggesting doing just that in her thread here.

    I'm not sure if I'd go with an ability score prereq of 15 for Advanced Talents or not, since they already come with the caveat that you must be at least 3rd level to take Advanced Talents in the first place, and that is enough to effectively keep them out of 1st level PC hands on its own.

    Thanks.

    DrSpunj

  8. #148

    Acolyte (Lvl 2)



    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    North Liberty, IA
    Posts
    821
    Here's my first pass at converting the prereqs to something along the lines of Thanee's suggestions.

    There are only 2 things to remember when looking down the lefthand column:

    1) Any feat name followed by a + you can take multiple times, it's effects stack. However, you can take it no more often than every other level and it may have further restrictions and increasing prereqs that keep you from taking it even that often. Sneak Attack is an example of the former. Favored Enemy is an example of the latter.

    2) Any feat name italicized is an Advanced Feat. You must be at least 5th level to take any of these feats, plus meet all the other prerequisites listed. Special Mount & Improved Uncanny Dodge are examples of this.

    Now, I did italicize a few feats in the second (prerequisites) column. I did that to draw attention to prereqs from another feat tree. For instance, Inspire Courage leads to Inspire Greatness and then to Inspire Heroics, however you must have Inspire Competence before you can get Inspire Greatness; Inspire Competence is therefore italicized.

    Finally, I greyed out a number of things that I won't be using in my campaign. These are very few and usually have to do with alignment (like Detect Evil, or Ki Strike (lawful)) or are effectively being replaced with access to better spellcasting (Lay on Hands & Remove Disease). If you don't about that then just Select All and change Text Color to Automatic to get rid of it.

    There are a few spots where I'm debating a prereq one way or another, but overall I'm pretty pleased with how things have "cleaned up". I think it's simpler once you understand the two points I explained above, but you'll have to let me know if you agree.

    EDIT: I just realized I forgot to adjust Damage Reduction. It should be an Advanced feat with it's only prereq being Con 13. I've probably missed some others. Please let me know if you see anything amiss.

    EDIT2: I've updated the Feats Cheat Sheet after correcting a few minor things.

    EDIT3: A few more minor changes and I've posted all the files together in Post #155.

    Thanks.

    DrSpunj
    Last edited by DrSpunj; Friday, 20th August, 2004 at 08:34 PM.

  9. #149

    Cutpurse (Lvl 5)



    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    louisville ky
    Posts
    1,818
    http://www.enworld.org/forums/showth...2&page=1&pp=20

    Someone (Sigil on here) has released a product that seems to do pretty much what we've been discussing. Maybe we should check it out *grin*

    Hagen

  10. #150

    Acolyte (Lvl 2)



    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    North Liberty, IA
    Posts
    821
    Quote Originally Posted by SSquirrel
    Someone (Sigil on here) has released a product that seems to do pretty much what we've been discussing. Maybe we should check it out
    I bought it the day it came out. I'd been keeping an eye out for it. He does some pretty cool stuff but he created his system on the primary assumption that Core was balanced, then came up with numbers that fit that scenario. Since my underlying assumption was that things were not balanced, I'm mining it for what I can but it certainly isn't something I'm going to use.

    He also gets away from CPs by having PCs buy their abilities wholly with XP. That way you essentially upgrade on the fly instead of using level breaks. They use a very similar system in Mutants & Masterminds which I enjoyed very much so one thing I've already swiped is something similar:

    Since each level after 1st gets you 11 CPs I'm going to award the players 1 CP for each 1/10 of XP they need to get to the next level, then 2 CPs when they actually cross the level boundary. You also don't get any of the "free stuff" until you cross the level boundary. This way you're getting some CPs after nearly every session and have to figure out if you're going to spend them on things that only cost a few CPs, or save them up for a Feat or Magic. Having done that in an M&M game I can tell you it's easy to agonize (in a fun way IMO) over what to do with your points. Spend them? Or Save them?

    He also went with variable costs for all the abilities, he almost had to to get things to sum up with all the classes being equal right from the start. I have to look over his prereqs to see what he's done, but haven't taken the time yet.

    Thanks.

    DrSpunj

Quick Reply Quick Reply

Similar Threads

  1. Class Balance - why?
    By Dellamon in forum *Pathfinder, Starfinder, Older D&D Editions (4E, 3.x, 2E, 1E, OD&D), D&D Variants, OSR
    Replies: 371
    Last Post: Wednesday, 1st February, 2012, 03:15 AM
  2. Trying to do a little class balance.
    By JacktheRabbit in forum *Pathfinder, Starfinder, Older D&D Editions (4E, 3.x, 2E, 1E, OD&D), D&D Variants, OSR
    Replies: 30
    Last Post: Thursday, 12th August, 2004, 04:34 PM
  3. Trying to do a little class balance.
    By JacktheRabbit in forum *General Roleplaying Games Discussion
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: Tuesday, 10th August, 2004, 10:11 AM
  4. [AU] Runethane rune spreadsheet, and Witchery spreadsheet
    By EricNoah in forum *General Roleplaying Games Discussion
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: Monday, 18th August, 2003, 04:17 PM
  5. Class balance changes in revised PHB?
    By Dark Jezter in forum *General Roleplaying Games Discussion
    Replies: 72
    Last Post: Thursday, 9th January, 2003, 07:17 PM

Posting Permissions

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