3 Favorite Things About Your Favorite System - Page 2
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  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arilyn View Post

    And I will stop because I'm not following the guidelines of this thread.
    No worries, it is interesting to read what everyone likes about their various games. Often I think it comes down to player preference and play styles, that is ok too.

  2. #12
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    I can't really think of what my favorite system is, so I'll take this opportunity to shill for Gishes & Goblins. These are the three things where I really think I hit it out of the park:

    1) Efficiency of class differentiation. The primary difference between a druid and a warlock is that a druid has some nature spells on their spell list, while a warlock has dark/evil spells instead. (All spellcasters can cast any spell that they know, and their spells scale automatically with level, so you don't need to justify how your cleric/wizard/whatever uses warlock mechanics just because those are more convenient for you.) The difference between a warlord and a monk is that a warlord has some leadership abilities on top of their fighter abilities, while a monk has some kung fu stuff on top of their fighter abilities; but they both swing swords the same way, and they both have the same number of attacks (including Action Surge), because changing those things isn't necessary to differentiate those character concepts.

    2) Enemies that can hold their own. Taking a page from 4E, elite monsters have the HP of two standard monsters put together, and boss monsters have three times as many HP. Taking it one step further, elite monsters typically have two actions per turn, and boss monsters typically have three actions per turn. Fighting a lich is like fighting a wizard, fighter, and rogue at the same time; except they share a health pool, so you can't focus fire one down in order to spoil their action economy. A boss monster is actually more powerful than its component parts.

    3) Ease of Homebrew.If you want to add new classes/races/monsters/whatever, there are guidelines to keep it balanced. There's an index full of generic monster stats, listed by role and level, so you can generate a level 15 sniper or a level 3 tank if you need one. Creating a sub-class is the easiest thing in the world, since it's literally just a progression of seven class features that you can add on top of any other class.

    Some honorable mentions, while I'm here and on the topic:

    4) Fewer Trap Options. The only real choice that you have when levelling is in selecting a feat - er, merit - every three levels. Every merit gives you a cool effect in addition to a stat boost. While it's impossible to balance cool things against each other, the real power comes from the stat boost, so you don't lose out on power if the cool thing is less useful than you'd hoped.

    5) Slower Progression. The sweet spot of adventuring in D&D has traditionally been between level 3 and level 9 (or so), but players also really like gaining levels, and expect to hit end-game after a year of play. G&G solves that by flattening out the power curve, so low-level wizards aren't starved for spell slots, and high-level fighters can't just keep fighting forever. A level 20 G&G character is more like a level 13 D&D character.

    6) Class Resource Balance. I almost forgot, since it's getting late into the day, but this is actually my favorite thing. Short rests are only 5 minutes long, with the assumption that you'll definitely take one after every fight. Class balance doesn't get skewed by pacing.

    I'll stop there. In retrospect, after compiling this list, maybe I do know what my favorite system is.
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  3. #13
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    [QUOTE=Saelorn;7620697]I can't really think of what my favorite system is, so I'll take this opportunity to shill for Gishes & Goblins.


    I purchased your game a few months back. Haven't played it yet, but there are some things I really like.

    Two weapon fighting: it makes sense. I've always disliked two weapon fighting in D&D, especially 5e. I really like your version.

    Armour Points: I think this is overdue.

    Classes: They have an old school simplicity, with enough abilities to add interest and distinctiveness.

    Question: The spellcasters lack utility spells. What is your reasoning behind this? Is it a balance issue? 13th Age lumps utility spells together, treating them as a feature wizards can choose. Your thoughts?
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  4. #14
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    L5R 5th

    • Very flexible character advancement.
    • Powerful but subtle behavior shaping via the honor system... at least when the player cares about the benefits honor has (or the drawbacks a lack of it has).
    • Excellent custom dice driven mechanics.
    • A wonderful new take on an excellent setting.
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  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arilyn View Post
    Question: The spellcasters lack utility spells. What is your reasoning behind this? Is it a balance issue? 13th Age lumps utility spells together, treating them as a feature wizards can choose. Your thoughts?
    The main reason is because spellcasters have so few spells known. I wanted to make sure that any spell was useful enough to cast seven times per day, and most utility spells in D&D are the sort of thing you only cast once every few levels. Water Breathing, for example; even if you learn it as a ritual, and it comes up once or twice in the campaign, it mostly just takes up space on your character sheet.

    I did try to make sure that the most important utility spells were there - Knock/Lock, Locate Object, and Teleport. I intentionally avoided Goodberry and Create Water, because of how controversial they are. I also added a couple of utility effects into the Merits section, so you can have at-will Mage Hand or Light if you really want that to be a defining part of your character. A lot of it's down to personal preference, of course, but there's a limit to how much content I could realistically include in a book that I was writing in my free time.
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  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elfcrusher View Post
    1) Very flat power curve. There are no levels, but veteran characters arent significantly (by RPG standards) more powerful than newly created characters. And yet there are lots of incremental rewards along the way.
    Quote Originally Posted by DrunkonDuty View Post
    2. Consistency of Rules. Once you know the rules there's very little need to open the rule book. This makes play a lot faster.
    Quote Originally Posted by Saelorn View Post
    3) Ease of Homebrew.If you want to add new classes/races/monsters/whatever, there are guidelines to keep it balanced. There's an index full of generic monster stats, listed by role and level
    I'll take any and all games conforming to these ideas.

    And for good measure, from Modos RPG:
    4. Goals and Flaws. A character concept/background contains at least one goal and flaw of the character. The goal helps to motivate the PC when things get murky, and the flaw is a reminder that a PC isn't just a bag of bonuses. Players aren't required to act on their goals and flaws, but can earn story and/or rules benefits for doing so.
    Modular, open source, free role-playing rules: Modos RPG
    modos-rpg.obsidianportal.com
    Tweets: @MichaelTwtr
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  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by aramis erak View Post
    L5R 5th

    • Very flexible character advancement.
    • Powerful but subtle behavior shaping via the honor system... at least when the player cares about the benefits honor has (or the drawbacks a lack of it has).
    • Excellent custom dice driven mechanics.
    • A wonderful new take on an excellent setting.
    I like L5R. I really do. I love the way the rules support the style of the game.

    BUT I have the 3rd edition rules. They are not coherent. That is they are poorly laid out in the book and the rules themselves have many bugs/holes/inconsistencies. I had to do a lot of sifting and re-writing of rules to make the game actually playable.

    Has 5th edition fixed this and made it more playable as written?
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  8. #18
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    I'll do GURPS.

    1. Character Vision from the start. Almost any character can be modeled and it allows people to create their vision from he start and make tweaks and improvements as you play. I like the balance between skills, talents, powers, and stats.
    You can have a powerful old wizard and the young talented fighter without both having to be be level 1.

    2. Your actions matter. The actions you take affect how you can defend or be hit. All out Attacks are dangerous to both the attacker and the defenders.
    Tick off a guy with a crossbow and your day might be painful.

    3. Cross worlds mostly easily. Want to mix up tech and magic and psionics? Knock yourself out. Plus there's the fun of grabbing 2+ random GURPS splat books and building a campaign.
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  9. #19
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    I'm going to do two systems here, because there's always the question of "Favorite system for what?". Anyway, let's start with generic fantasy/sci-fi.

    HARP

    1. Mixed-races are not presented as full races, they're made either with exactly one or two blood talents or exactly one or two genetic adaptation racial/species talent swaps.

    2. Sure, it's class/level based (Professions), but that's more of a starting point than "You can do X because you're a Y".

    3. Spell scaling. Want to cast a spell while wearing plate? Go ahead, just remember you need more PP (therefore a higher rank) and you take penalties for every PP over initial cost.

    Anthropomorphic Fantasy

    World Tree

    1. I can remember all the commonly used rules in my head.

    2. Sure, your character is human-like, but still has some animal instinctual trait that screams "you're still an animal".

    3. An explanation of "laundry list" style spells. Yeah, it's basic, but it explains why the pattern spells are made that way.
    Last edited by Zhaleskra; Tuesday, 18th June, 2019 at 06:21 PM. Reason: precision
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  10. #20
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    Hero System (Champions! c1981 through HSR/BBB c1989-99 & FRED was OK, too)

    1) Effects-based universal point-buy system. You can build any character, monster, gizmo, power, cool move, hazard, or, heck, plot point, from any medium or genre, based simply on what it actually /does/, not it's press releases, not what it "is" or how it does it, just the actual 'effect' it accomplishes in the story. Then you just describe all that other fun stuff how you like. You can even create the system artifacts that make other systems 'unique.' Want your plate mail to deflect hits but offer no actual protection, even though that's not what "armor" does in Hero? No problem: +8 DCV, OIF:Platemail.

    2) Geometric scaling, including the Time, and (a stretch, perhaps) Speed charts. The Speed chart is a way of letting some characters be a lot faster than others, while still letting them all participate reasonably in the same fight. The Time chart was a roughly geometric progression that you could walk a 'power' or modifier up or down to get a value for things like a casting or warm-up time or a fixed duration or a rate of travel for your interstellar drive or what-have you. And, the in-story magnitude of any weapon/ability/superpower/whatever scaled geometrically as the mechanical points invested in it progressed linearly (typically by steps of 5pts, but not always) - which, surprisingly, is not that 'unrealistic'(a .44 is deadlier than a .22, but it's not strictly 8x as deadly, even though it has 8x the kinetic energy) - which enabled playing a team with wildly different power-levels, without making most of them useless compared to the one heavy-hitter.

    3) Cost Breaks: The build system would not have held together without secondary characteristics and power frameworks that allowed a character to be somewhat rounded and still viable. Without them, the point-buy system could have incentivized extremes - glass cannons and teeny hammers and the like - too much. And without Disadvantages and limitations to give characters and their abilities weaknesses, drawbacks, and genre caveats.
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