View Full Version : Playtesting wanted, CR system.

2009-10-06, 03:35 PM
The CR system is functionally flawed, we all know that. Last night while trying to fall asleep I came up with this and I would like some feedback, and like it even more if a few people would playtest it out.

For simplicity M=Monster, P=Player.

For average daily encounters
If CR = APL then the ration is 1M/4P
If CR = APL -1 then 1M/2P
If CR = APL -2 then 1M/1P
If CR = APL -3 then 2M/1P
If CR = APL -4 then 4M/1P

For "boss" type fights treat APL as 2 levels higher for purpose of calculating proper CRs.

Again, any feedback is encouraged, especially from any sort of playtesting.
And sorry that it doesn't take into account the way WotC seems to randomly assign CRs to monsters.

2009-10-06, 05:03 PM
Is "M" always the same monster? Or is this supposed to be a system for deciding how many monsters there are in a given combat?

2009-10-06, 05:18 PM
The biggest flaw I see is that it's still designed on the idea that the CRs are given accurately...I see a fairly wide spread of CRs in mobs, really.

2009-10-06, 05:46 PM
The Problem is that CR is that is not applied well universally to all monsters.

What you are doing is redesigning the EL charts. But the EL charts are actually the best, clearest, and most correct part of the CR system.

The only problem is that CR of given monster X is not always well represented compared to monster Y and compared to a party.

So you are getting rid of the part of CR that works great, but still using the part that works badly.

2009-10-07, 01:20 AM
CR's are pretty useless, because characters can range all the way from monk with great cleave to nanobots.

2009-10-07, 09:45 AM
It's not just that player optimization differs...thats not that hard to adjust for. It's that not all mobs of the same CR are equally challenging. There's a pretty wide range there...

Sinfire Titan
2009-10-07, 10:06 AM
Actually, the real problem is more than just class design or monster design. It's actions. 1 vs 4 doesn't work in 3.5 unless you are abusing stuff like Celerity. It gets worse with larger parties, as the enemy has to 1) beat all of them in Init, and 2) manage to outlast their actions long enough to pose a threat.

Even in a party of 5 20th level Fighters, a single CR 20 monster has to survive 16+attacks (assuming they have a method of Swift action movement or pounce, neither of which are that difficult to get). A CR 20 has fairly low AC, especially unbuffed.

Doc Roc
2009-10-07, 10:33 AM
Everything that Sinfire says is true. But there really is an enormous spread in what CR means. Disregarding any claims of balance or propriety in the rest of core, the CR of monsters is one of the few things I think everyone can agree is just completely awful.

Take a look at the Hezrou for example. Spamming blasphemy will probably Just Work, and with the Hezrou's int, it probably knows that. Stack that on top of a passive AoE disable with a high DC that's constitution based and you have tonnes of fun. Oh and if you save? You still get sickened. Meaning your chance of saving against all his other save or sucks drops. Oh, and he has a goodly amount of hp at 138.

And improved grab.

It's CL is 13, it's CR is 11. This means that blasphemy is almost certainly auto-daze + auto-weaken. Which means it's going to kill most party members simply by spamming it three times for 6d6 strength damage and three turns of daze.

All this is naked, with no gear, and both toughness and cleave for feats.
Switch one of those to ability focus(stench), and this starts to become a sick joke. Switch the other to say.... Well, does it really matter at this point?

I'll tell you what, I've never been so happy to see toughness as a feat on any creature. Fortunately, its touch AC is trash, so it's basically just Enervation fodder. Unless it goes first, then its 50-50 for a TPK, boiling down to how spread out the party is.