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Just to Browse
2013-07-03, 01:21 AM
So I'm considering having classes that naturally counter each other, similar to how rock-paper-scissors works. The rock class would naturally be good at tactics that screwed over the scissor class, and the paper class would be naturally good at techniques that messed with the rock class, etc.

If we were to construct a similar paradigm using fighter, mage, and rogue (or some other generic trio of archetypes), who would beat who and why do you think so?

inuyasha
2013-07-03, 01:56 AM
well for starters: Fighters=rock, stubborn and tough and not easily damaged, but able to dish out a lot when thrown at someone
Rogue=scissors, can be safe at times and often appear very fun to play with, but the inner edges are sharp and stabby
Mage=paper, a blank slate that is full of creativity that anything can be drawn on, as well as its ability to fold into different shapes to take on different jobs depending on the parties current needs.

Was this helpful or no?

GunbladeKnight
2013-07-03, 02:04 AM
I have also considered this. If I were to do it, I would have it as such:

Fighter beats rogue: The fighter is trained in all forms of combat and to always be ready for anything. They are a master of arms and combat while the rogue is only a dabbler.

Rogue beats mage: The rogue is trained in surprise attacks, catching the mage off guard or tricking them and taking them out with a surprise attack.

Mage beats fighter: The mage can control the battlefield and use various other forms of magic, from having their own guardian to sending a massive fireball. The fighter may be a master of combat, but magic is a whole different dimension.

That said, I wouldn't focus on it. A few abilities here and there, sure. The problem people have with casters over others is that they are better at doing their jobs, as well as others at the same time.

Vadskye
2013-07-03, 02:18 AM
GunbladeKnight has the right idea on the direction of superiority, I think. (Whether it actually works that way mechanically is, of course, a different question). And I think D&D is healthier for not focusing too much on a rock/paper/scissors dynamic; that sort of system works better in games where you have the ability to customize your strategy "on the fly". D&D characters (except prepared casters) have their basic skill sets fairly solidly set in stone.

Just to Browse
2013-07-03, 01:35 PM
That's three for rogue -> mage -> fighter. Interesting.

Yitzi
2013-07-03, 01:49 PM
Yeah, rogue beats mage beats fighter makes more sense unless you completely rewrite the mage.

And a rock-paper-scissors system is generally good, as it naturally leads to balance, whereas balance is nearly impossible without one.

inuyasha
2013-07-03, 02:17 PM
hey...can we add in Priest and Incarnate to make it Rock-Paper-Scissors-Lizard-Spock?

Deepbluediver
2013-07-03, 02:24 PM
The potential issue I see here, is that D&D has a lot more than 3 classes; are you planning on fitting everything into this same, neat little paradigm? Will other classes have their own rock-paper-scissors/acid-machine gun-dynamite dynamic? What happens for characters that don't fit easily into any one category like bards or rangers?

137ben
2013-07-03, 02:24 PM
hey...can we add in Priest and Incarnate to make it Rock-Paper-Scissors-Lizard-Spock?
Well, as long as we have an odd number of classes, it should work:smalltongue:

Zombimode
2013-07-03, 02:28 PM
So I'm considering having classes that naturally counter each other, similar to how rock-paper-scissors works. The rock class would naturally be good at tactics that screwed over the scissor class, and the paper class would be naturally good at techniques that messed with the rock class, etc.

If we were to construct a similar paradigm using fighter, mage, and rogue (or some other generic trio of archetypes), who would beat who and why do you think so?

Hm, why would you want to do this?
PnP games (at least those with fighters, rogues and wizards) tend to be cooperation-based, often with enemies not conforming to those roles.
Also, this kind of bottom-up design can easily lead to flavor dissonances and arbitrariness ("so I, as a fighter, get a damage bonus against, rogues who are lightly armored, but not against wizards besides them also being lightly armored humanoids (or fighters without armor)?").

inuyasha
2013-07-03, 02:29 PM
The potential issue I see here, is that D&D has a lot more than 3 classes; are you planning on fitting everything into this same, neat little paradigm? Will other classes have their own rock-paper-scissors/acid-machine gun-dynamite dynamic? What happens for characters that don't fit easily into any one category like bards or rangers?

well, rangers were (originally) fighters, a subtype of the fighter class, so they go there

Bards were essentially the first PrC ever made, because you needed to have a combination of skills, and they were very highly dependant on thieves skills, with a little spellcasting, so they go under rogue type. I brought up incarnate and cleric as a joke because...well i dont know :p they would both fit under mage pretty well however

Yitzi
2013-07-03, 03:03 PM
Well, as long as we have an odd number of classes, it should work:smalltongue:

Actually, it's an interesting mathematical question: With three and five, there's really only one possibility (i.e. any other option is just the result of moving the names around), it's an interesting question if you can get two distinct possibilities with higher odd numbers.

Rakoa
2013-07-03, 03:03 PM
Just use this thing here (http://covenation.files.wordpress.com/2013/01/rockpaperscissors.jpg) if you want to add some more classes in to the mix.

Just to Browse
2013-07-03, 04:16 PM
Just use this thing here (http://covenation.files.wordpress.com/2013/01/rockpaperscissors.jpg) if you want to add some more classes in to the mix.

Psh, casuals. (http://www.umop.com/rps101/rps101chart.html)

I wasn't really thinking of making the game only three classes, or turning every set-up into RPS fights, but using the archetypes of Fighter, Rogue, Mage, and having each class fit into those archetypes. So all paladins, barbarians, death knights, and swashbucklers would generally be weak against all priests of Pelor, rage mages, necromancers, and elementalists, who would in turn all be weak against assassins, scouts, thief-acrobats, and shadowdancers.

The idea is twofold:
Players will need to have mutable strategies in fights. No one character can be "the striker" or "the support", but each one will need to be effective at killing (when their preferred target comes up) and defending/supporting (when their enemy target comes up).
The system could possibly be used by the DM to moderate situations where one player is doing better than the other. If the paper tiger (rogue) is winning all the fights, you could throw more elementals, swordwraiths, and dragons (fighters) against them.

EDIT: Come to think of it, that feels very restrictive. It shoehorns all mages into being anti-fighter, but I can envision blood mages or buffmancers that play like fighters and archers/rangers that play like rogues. Perhaps it would be better to use three archetypes that aren't pre-loaded with flavor: Maybe bruiser, assassin, carry?

Pesimismrocks
2013-07-03, 04:31 PM
hey...can we add in Priest and Incarnate to make it Rock-Paper-Scissors-Lizard-Spock?

Why stop there? Say hello to Wizard Sorcerer Monk Barbarian Cleric Bard Fighter Rogue Spellthief Druid Ranger Incarnate Totemist Truenamer Binder Marshal Dragon Shaman Favored Soul Dragonfire Adept Warblade Swordsage Crusader Knight Psion Archivist (http://www.buamai.com/image/10881)

Truenamer beats archivist by way of breaking their brains with their complicated and useless mechanics.

Just to Browse
2013-07-03, 04:33 PM
Three posts in a row and counting.

EDIT: I just realized I broke the chain. Time to not waste your bandwidth and talk about useful things:

The Triad
I don't know. Cockroach-Nuke-Japan doesn't sound so family-friendly.

The triad is the description of the class archetypes. Each archetype is especially effective against one type of enemy and especially ineffective against the other, which hopefully leads to organic tactical decisions at the beginning of every battle. The three archetypes are (names are stolen from LoL and subject to change):
Bruiser: Beefy with good defenses, but low mobility and little to no ranged attacks. Bruisers are king in close-range combat, but getting there might be a problem. Expect passive defenses, movement negation, and close-range nukes.
Assassin: Squishy but dangerous with high mobility, a little range, and significant damage. Assassins can use hyperbeam overexert themselves, hitting the hardest and fastest, but leaving themselves vulnerable afterwards. Expect gap-closers, close-range disables, and defenses that break when you attack.
Carry: Also squishy with big range and little mobility. Carries can blow things up from afar, and their best moves are solar beam ones that charge up. Their abilities tend to suck if someone's standing next to them. Expect long-range nukes, terrain effects, and defenses that increase space.

Bruisers beat assassins because they can survive the initial onslaught of assassin abilities, and then will just wail on assassins with their higher damage and movement negation. Carries beat bruisers because they can keep range easily while the bruiser has no compensation. Assassins beat carries because they can close distances easily and blow close targets up while the carry doesn't have appropriate attacks for melee combat.

What Makes Classes Different?
But this time it's actually necessary. (http://thepunchlineismachismo.com/archives/comic/its-what-vin-would-have-done)

So in each archetype, there will be classes, and each class needs to feel distinct from other within its archetype without violating the boundaries set by that archetype. So how do we go about that?

In order to achieve a legitimate feeling of difference, the classes need to do something else. I feel like that can be one of three things:
Out-of-combat schticks, like sneaking or diplomacy, but this isn't enough to distinguish a paladin from a knight.
Support abilities that make the fight easier without going through the RPS of archetype design. The types I'm thinking of are:
Clearing minions. No matter what part of the triad the minions are on, a class focused on horde breaking should be able to do it easily. E.g. Barbarian (bruiser), Arcanist (carry), Jedi (assassin).
Ally buffs. Classic bonuses to HP, damage, mobility, skill checks. E.g. Paladin (bruiser), Marshal (carry), Telepath (assassin).
Immunity or resistance to conditions and saves. This is separate from the above because buffs are a big category, and different classes can hold the ideals differently. E.g. Dragon Rider (bruiser), Priest (carry), Witch (assassin).
Enemy debuffs. Inflicting major conditions like nausea is not part of this list, but reducing saves, DR, and removing immunities is. E.g. Death Knight (bruiser), Necromancer (carry), Hexblade (assassin).
Further differences in damage types inflicted. This would play directly into a numerical weakness system, where certain races have a little more weakness to certain types of damage. Ideally this would be customizable between classes. E.g. the arcanist can choose what type his energy bolt and energy ball will be with a ritual, make him a fire mage or acid mage with a week of downtime. Paladins can choose to be Defenders of the Faith and inflict melee damage with their abilities, or Guardians of the Sun to deal fire damage with their abilities.