Discussion in 'It's Galley's Turn' started by Carcosa, Jul 20, 2015.
@Aviari, do you happen to know what @Salem's answer would be?
Salem is a 2, Pathfinder and some D&D
Thanks! Okay, that makes it pretty simple, everyone knows the basic structure. Here's the big differences, as best I can remember (I don't actually know Pathfinder or recent D&D that well.)
Spoiler: Levels and Tiers
First of all, the range of levels you're expected to play goes from 1 to 10. Levels 1-4 are called "adventurer tier", 5-7 is "champion tier", 8-10 is "epic tier." Each new tier allows better feats and better magic items, but of course your challenges will get tougher too. Anything above level 10 is generally an icon.
Spoiler: Attacks and Damage
When you want to ruin some poor monster's day, you roll for the attack - even if you're casting a spell. Your base attack bonus is your level. Period. Some attribute always gets added - Str for melee attacks, Dex for ranged attacks (or Moth in melee, bards are bouncy), Int for witch spells, Cha for sorcerer and bard spells. Your roll is compared to one of the target's defense numbers - AC for physical attacks, PD for most damage dealing spells (think Reflex save) or MD for mind-affecting spells (think Will save).
There are not many modifiers. The big ones are penalties from using a weapon you're not proficient with, bonuses from magic items, and status conditions. Modifiers from different sources generally stack, modifiers from similar sources generally don't. Under extreme conditions I might even apply a circumstance bonus or penalty.
If you hit with a weapon, you roll for damage: the type of die is determined by the weapon, from d4 for a dagger to d10 for a lance. The number of dice is equal to your level. Then you add the same attribute you added to your attack roll. (At higher tiers you add the attribute more than once.) So, right now if Taiga stabs someone with a dagger, she deals 1d4 damage - she's level 1, daggers are small weapons that deal d4 damage dice, and her Str is 0. If Twp slashes someone with her saber, she deals 1d8+4 - she's also level 1, but serious weapons like cavalry sabers deal d8 damage dice, and her Str is +4. But as characters gain levels, damage numbers start looking really big by D&D standards. When Twp levels up, she'll deal 2d8+4 damage, then 3d8+4, then 4d8+4. At level 5 she's reached champion tier, and so the strength bonus doubles - she'll deal 5d8+8 damage with basic attacks. The Bullroarer is level 11, iconic tier, with Str +6, so his basic attacks are pulling 11d8+24 damage for an average of about 74 HP per swing (except he's probably using his equally iconic mace, so call that 11d8+28.)
If you miss with a melee weapon, you still do damage equal to your level - you didn't actually whiff, you staggered your opponent's guard or bashed on their armor or something. If you miss with a ranged weapon, you actually missed, sorry. No damage.
Spell damage is listed in the spell description, but in general at-will spells will lag a little behind the brawlers' weapon attacks, while recharge and daily spells will do much more, usually to multiple targets. Miss damage for spells tends to be better, too - the big daily spells often do half damage on a miss.
Using a ranged attack or ranged spell will give every enemy in melee with you a free attack of opportunity on you.
Another important mechanic is the "save." It is not the same as the roll by the same name from D&D. A save means you roll d20, and if you get 11 or higher, the thing you wanted happens.
Continuing effects like status conditions or ongoing damage are ended by rolling a save (after your turn, so you always have to deal with whatever it is for one round.) If you keep flubbing the save, then you have to keep suffering for several rounds.
To disengage from melee safely (get away from that orc in your face without drawing an opportunity attack) you roll a save for each enemy engaged with you.
Once in a while you'll see a "hard save", where you have to roll 16 or better, or an "easy save", where you only have to roll 6 or better.
Saves usually have no modifiers - no +level, no +attribute.
Your basic ability to regain HP is the "recovery." You get eight recoveries per day. Using a recovery means you get to roll to regain HP: a number of dice equal to your level, of a type determined by your class, plus your Con.
The basic way to use a recovery is to "rally." This is a normal action (that is, you do it instead of attacking) and it lets you use up one of your recoveries to regain HP.
Most healing magic expends a recovery from the target. The benefit of using a spell or potion instead of a rally is usually speed, extra hit points, or just having someone else spend the time on healing while the injured character keeps pouring on damage. (Btw, while I was writing this I had a balance thought about the witch spell Weal, so I buffed it a bit.)
Some really good healing magic, like the witch/cleric spell Cure Wounds, allows a "free recovery" - that is, the target regains HP as though they used one of their recoveries, but they don't actually use the recovery up.
You regain your recoveries at the same time that casters regain their spells. The rules like to say this is "at the end of the day" but what this really means is the end of a minor arc or episode of the story, when the party has a chance to rest in safety. It may or may not be an actual calendar day. Expect about four battles per "day" unless I tell you otherwise.
Everyone's spell slots work the same way. There is no rules distinction between "memorized" (wizard/cleric) and "improvised" (sorcerer/bard) magic like there is in D&D. Classes have special features that affect the rhythm of their magic - witches have hexes, bards have songs, sorcerers can gather power and have a lot of at-will spells, etc. - but the basic mechanics are the same. You have x slots, and you fill them with spells from your class' spell list. At-will spells are infinitely reusable, daily spells are gone after one use (until the end of the "day"), and other types fall somewhere in between. The next day you can pick different spells if you want, or get the same spells back.
By the book, the levels that indicate the power of a spell are all odd numbers, and you get access to spells when your level equals the spell's level. In practice I think this gives casters an uneven and nerfed damage progression compared to physical attackers, so I'm going to kludge in even-numbered spell levels.
Your spell slots level with you. By the time a caster is level 4 they have no level 1 spell slots any more. You can still take and use the spells you had at first level, but now you're casting powered-up versions. (There are also just more powerful spells that you can't take at all until level 3 or 5 or whatnot.) So, when Incandescence hits level 3, they can take Breath of the Iron in a third-level spell slot, and it'll deal 5d6+3 damage to each target instead of the 3d6+3 it used to do. Or, they can take the newly available spell Breath of the Mercury in that slot, which deals 18 ongoing damage every round until the target makes a save (but no damage immediately).
On the other hand, high level casters get fewer total spells than they would in D&D. A tenth level sorcerer gets only nine spell slots per day, though they're all 9th level. (Or, with my house rule, maybe 6 9th level and 3 10th level slots.)
Researching new spells is plot-driven, there's no formal rules for it. But special non-combat magic effects are generally handled as rituals of spells you already have - a Cure Wounds ritual could cure a disease, or a Burning Hands ritual could smelt and shape metal. Taiga has ritual magic for free and Incandescence took the feat for it, so rituals should be pretty well available.
Spoiler: Skill Checks
A skill check (anything dramatic and risky that's not an attack) is rolled as d20 + level + attribute + background. Backgrounds don't stack, if you have more than one that would apply only the highest counts.
In adventurer-tier environments, most skill checks need a modified 15 to succeed. Particularly tough stuff might require a 20, and if you're not really supposed to succeed it'll be a 25. Anything that would be easier than a 15 is boring enough that I won't require a roll. Champion-tier environments add 5 to all those numbers. Epic-tier environments add 10.
The philosophy of the system is "fail forward." If a skill check doesn't succeed, it's not an embarassing total failure. Rather, you did something awesome, but it didn't work out quite like you wanted it to. The example in the book is failing a skill check to get an NPC on your side - the NPC doesn't hate you, but it turns out they have a cannibalism kink (seriously, that's the example in the book, I didn't make that up) and think you're interested. You have succeeded in getting the NPC to like you, in a way, but things are definitely not going well. (Obviously the next "failed" make-a-friend roll would go wrong in a different way.)
You can make skill checks in battle if it's something you can finish in that time scale. It's usually a normal action, replacing your attack.
Spoiler: Escalation Die!
The escalation die is a counter that goes up by one every round. In the first round of combat it's at 0, then next round it increases to 1, etc. The maximum is 6.
PCs add the escalation die to all attack rolls. Monsters do not, unless the monster is very badass (think dragons.)
Since you're less likely to miss when the escalation die is high, it's often a good idea to save daily spells (like Lightning Fork or Disaster) and other one-use tricks for later in a combat. This makes them work more like "finishing moves."
Other mechanics interact with the escalation die in special ways. Wood elves are more likely to get extra actions as the escalation die goes up. Wizards have spells they can cast repeatedly as long as the escalation die is even. Some barbarians can rage for free when the escalation die is high enough.
Monster abilities can interact with the escalation die even if the monster isn't adding it to attack rolls.
As you'd expect characters (or monsters) can have abilities that override these rules. Incandescence's spells never count as "ranged" for purposes of drawing opportunity attacks, even when the spells strike at a distance. Moth can teleport out of melee without needing to roll to disengage. Twp can sometimes start the escalation die at 1 instead of 0. Taiga's magic can apply a modifier to a save, which usually don't get modifiers. Etc. etc.
Okay, looking at what people said about times, I propose 4 pm eastern on Friday the 28th for our first game. I'm familiarizing myself with Roll20 now, I should at least have the basics set by friday. I hope the session will last about four hours, but sometimes I run long. Is that cool for all concerned?
Sounds good to me! I also have decent roll20 chops, if you want advice.
Thanks! I'm looking at documentation now. (There is documentation content that is ONLY IN VIDEO FORM seriously who thinks that's a good idea they are wrong) I'll let you know if I have any questions. Any general advice / important pointers?
/w and /as only apply to the line before a line break
If you shift+enter to get a line break without posting, you need to put another /w or /as if you want the bit after the line break posted as a whisper or from an NPC, respectively.
Also, learn the keyboard shortcuts. Especially alt+scroll to zoom (rather than ctrl+scroll which will just zoom the entire goddamn tab)
I'll be late-- I get off at 3, so I should be good to go around 3:30-ish
*blinks* Are you in a different time zone from me, @Salem? I picked 4 because you said you were off at 3.
I think @Salem is an hour back from EST, she meant 3 her time.
Ah. Then let's make it 5 my time, or 4 her time.
Okay, this is a fun program. I made macros for everyone's spells and other powers that involve dice rolls. And I uploaded the art that @Aviari and @Wiwaxia posted for Taiga and Twp as their avatars. If anyone has pictures or theme songs you want to put in, just let me know. Time to make some monsters!
Heh. @Salem and I went kinda nuts in the Dollmaker Game thread, we have avatars coming out our ears.
Nix is going to be so coooool :3
Spoiler: Taiga, before the Apocalypse happened to her wardrobe.
Also going nuts with the idea of "Legend Over-Exaggerates Everything" wrt Nix.
ETA: Taiga Icon
Awesome, because the image I've got for Moth now is Edward from Final Fantasy 4, and while he is sufficiently fancy the hair is all wrong.
ETA: I don't have time right now, but for next time I (or someone) should edit these images so they have a 1:1 aspect ratio and don't get all stretched when I put them in the map grid.
@TheSeer game's at 5:00 EST, right? also can you PM us the player link to the game?
Yes it is, and sure I'll do that now. If Salem (and everyone else) happens to arrive early we can start sooner, but I wanted to give her some buffer. Personally I wouldn't want to get home from work and immediately have another commitment.
I'm home and about 80% settled! I'll get you a pic of Moth (or the closest I've come so far, which isn't very close at all) in a sec
Behold this nerd
I have given him life
Do we want to splinter off into a new Lost Ages Game thread, so that this one can be further used for "I have no group, halp" purposes?
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