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  1. - Top - End - #241
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    Default Re: OOTS #863 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by AutomatedTeller View Post
    As for Elan - there's a very good reason why he would be bad in this fight, which is that his competence is tied to his puns. I'm guessing that if the opponent cannot hear the pun, he is no longer oddly effective Elan, but just a guy singing a song Elan.
    Excellent observation.

    -----------------

    By the way, I am reminded that Xykon can't remember Roy's name. Is there any chance that if he sees a party of adventurers a few hundred feet from the pyramid, he will assume it's that group that's been trying to pester them? Redcloak might "recognize" Nale as Elan, and they've just been conveniently separated from the obvious differences - the demon, the succubus, and the lizard cleric of death.

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    Default Re: OOTS #863 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    "He is not a barbarian, or ranger, or paladin, so he's not a blackguard."

    The conclusion in no way derives from, or even relates to, the premise.
    Alright, I may not have been clear enough in my previous post. I meant that since most Blackguards seem to be former Paladins (sharing the same important stats like CHA and getting huge benefits from trading their ex PAL levels in) I assumed that Tarquin was not likely to be a Black Guard.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    ...Once again, not really a reply to what it's claimed to be. Your original argument was that Tarquin must be epic level because he'd been adventuring so much longer than the Order. I said that how long he'd been adventuring was not strong evidence, since adventurers level in bursts, not steadily. The Order has, indeed, gained a large number of levels in a relatively short amount of time. That's the point.
    I've played RPGs for at least 15 years and I cannot say I've seen that burst progression you mention. With a good, coherent DM not giving his PC group silly (too hard/ too easy) challenges, I've always seen steady leveling (and I've played a lot of different games, thank you very much, before you argue that not every game XP system works the same) be it with D&D, Warhammer FRP, Star Wars, Rolemaster, CoChtulhu, Stormbringer, Reve de Dragons, Empires & Dynasties, etc.


    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    So I take it you're a member of the "Miko was much higher level than the Order when she beat them up" club.
    Nope, sorry to burst your bubble but I'm with you on this one. I assume she's a member of the "broken " Monk Class. Add some crazy good paladin features and I'd say you don't need a higher level Mikko to be much more efficient than the OOTS at their respective level.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    (For the benefit of anyone reading this who remembers a certain old argument: Yes, I argued against someone's blithe assertion that Tarquin has a Ring of Mind Blank. And I'd do it again, because "the ring on Tarquin's not-committed-to-the-Ring-of-True-Sight finger is a not-from-D&D-books*, epic** item permanently enchanted with this eighth-level spell" is both an oddly specific claim, and an even more extreme one than simply "Tarquin is epic level." That's not the same as arguing that Tarquin has nothing that boosts his Will save in any way.)
    Cloak of Protection +5 FTW
    Doesn't T mention a Ring of Regeneration (my crazy bet would be he sports a Ring of Rapid Healing) in a conversation with Elan ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    So wait. Are you saying Tarquin is epic level, or that he's level 17?
    Does my english suck so much that you seem to misread half of what I wrote ?
    I was just stating that even in the very unlikely case that T was only a 17th fighter we hadn't seen half of his potential.
    Last edited by hakflem; 2012-09-15 at 11:02 AM.

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    Default Re: OOTS #863 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    Really?

    So you had questions when Nale went from Expeditious Retreat to Suggestion? Or when Redcloak summoned a fiendish elephant?
    Ooooooh, my turn to nitpick :)

    Why do you assume he didn't have both spells in the first place ?

  4. - Top - End - #244
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    Default Re: OOTS #863 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by hakflem View Post
    Alright, I may not have been clear enough in my previous post. I meant that since most Blackguards seem to be former Paladins (sharing the same important stats like CHA
    Let's unpack this assumption a bit.

    Set aside, for the moment, the argument that having levels in a class which shares stat dependencies with another class means you must necessarily have levels in that other class as well, so that every fighter is also a barbarian, every rogue also a ranger, every sorcerer also a bard.

    Do you think Tarquin has poor Wisdom and Charisma?

    If you don't, "Blackguards use Wisdom and Charisma" makes an odd argument that he would not be one, does it not?

    and getting huge benefits from trading their ex PAL levels in)
    This is a flat-out misunderstanding of the rules. An annoyingly common misunderstanding...but a misunderstanding nonetheless.

    A blackguard who is an ex-paladin 9 (or below), or who has 10 levels of ex-paladin but chooses not to trade in all of them, or trades in some levels of ex-paladin but still has some left over, gets some trifling benefits for those nine (or however many) otherwise-useless trailing levels of ex-paladin. Such a blackguard is nowhere near as powerful as an otherwise-identical blackguard who is a fighter 9 instead.

    A blackguard who has 10 or more levels of ex-paladin can trade those levels in for blackguard levels, one for one. If s/he does so, that is all s/he gets from them. A blackguard 5 who traded in five levels of ex-paladin for those five blackguard levels is in no way more powerful than a blackguard 5 who gained those five levels with XP.

    Neither narratively, nor in terms of power, is being an ex-paladin more logical for a blackguard than being a fighter or fighter/rogue. "Tarquin was never a paladin" is a logical belief. "Therefore Tarquin has no blackguard levels" is not.
    I've played RPGs for at least 15 years and I cannot say I've seen that burst progression you mention.
    Really?

    Take the character you've played who covered the most levels over the course of play. Might be a character who started at level 1 and leveled to 20, or a character who started at level 10 and leveled to 15, or a character who started at level 2 and leveled to 9, I don't know what characters you've played. But, for the one who covered the most levels over the course of play, how many years did that take? That is--assuming my first example above--how old was the character at level 1, and how old was the character at level 20? (If there were time-skips in the campaign, please mention them.)

    In any case, in OotS, Roy has gone from level 7-9 to around level 16 since the comic started. How many years of in-comic time would you say have passed?
    With a good, coherent DM not giving his PC group silly (too hard/ too easy) challenges, I've always seen steady leveling
    You're not getting this. At least in OotS, the PCs are high level at this point, the spellcasters casting seventh and eighth-level spells. None of the human PCs is over the age of 30. That is a lot of leveling in a burst relative to their total lifespan. "I've always seen steady leveling over the course of a game" doesn't really relate to what I'm saying, because the "bursts" I'm talking about are "the course of a game."
    Nope, sorry to burst your bubble but I'm with you on this one. I assume she's a member of the "broken " Monk Class. Add some crazy good paladin features and I'd say you don't need a higher level Mikko to be much more efficient than the OOTS at their respective level.
    You're missing the point. You asserted that...let me find the words..."A couple levels over them won't be enough," for Tarquin being able to fight the entire Order.

    Why is that the case for Tarquin but not Miko?
    Doesn't T mention a Ring of Regeneration (my crazy bet would be he sports a Ring of Rapid Healing) in a conversation with Elan ?
    Yes.

    Quote Originally Posted by hakflem View Post
    Ooooooh, my turn to nitpick :)

    Why do you assume he didn't have both spells in the first place ?
    No such assumption necessary. You said, "You can't have him cast much more powerful spells from 1 strip to another without raising questions." (Bolding mine.)

    That is exactly what Nale did. First-level spell, then, the next time we saw him cast a spell, fourth-level spell. No way around it; Rich did exactly what you said he couldn't do. And, in fact, he does it all the time; having a character cast a new higher-level spell is his most common way of heralding, "This character is now high enough level to cast this spell."
    Last edited by Kish; 2012-09-16 at 07:44 AM.
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    "You are what you do. Choose again, and change." --Miles Vorkosigan

    "The really unforgivable acts are committed by calm men in beautiful green silk rooms, who deal death wholesale, by the shipload, without lust, or anger, or desire, or any redeeming emotion to excuse them but cold fear of some pretended future. But the crimes they hope to prevent in the future are imaginary. The ones they commit in the present--they are real." --Aral Vorkosigan

    Quote Originally Posted by The Giant View Post
    This, in a nutshell.
    Yes, exactly.

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    Default Re: OOTS #863 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay R View Post
    Excellent observation.

    -----------------

    By the way, I am reminded that Xykon can't remember Roy's name. Is there any chance that if he sees a party of adventurers a few hundred feet from the pyramid, he will assume it's that group that's been trying to pester them? Redcloak might "recognize" Nale as Elan, and they've just been conveniently separated from the obvious differences - the demon, the succubus, and the lizard cleric of death.
    pretty sure Xykon can tell the difference between an aging white man with a full head of hair and a youthful black man whos bald

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    Default Re: OOTS #863 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Forikroder View Post
    pretty sure Xykon can tell the difference between an aging white man with a full head of hair and a youthful black man whos bald
    Tarquin's wearing a helmet.
    group hug!
    Hold person.
    ...

    Quote Originally Posted by The Giant View Post
    You forgot that the half-orc cleric who researched it is Redcloak's niece.
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    Awesome elf cleric avatar made by Kurien. Many thanks!

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    Default Re: OOTS #863 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay R View Post
    By the way, I am reminded that Xykon can't remember Roy's name. Is there any chance that if he sees a party of adventurers a few hundred feet from the pyramid, he will assume it's that group that's been trying to pester them? Redcloak might "recognize" Nale as Elan, and they've just been conveniently separated from the obvious differences - the demon, the succubus, and the lizard cleric of death.
    You know... that's a decent point. Tarquin is even dressed in predominantly purple armor now, same as Roy. The fact that none of the Order could tell he wasn't Thog would imply that his armor leaves none of his flesh visible, so it is kind of conceivable that someone could confuse him for Roy.

    ...although his armor is only purple because of a magical illusion. As Xykon and Redcloak are heading in to the stronghold of a known illusionist, it seems pretty unlikely that they wouldn't have the spells necessary to see through it constantly on.

    Quote Originally Posted by hakflem View Post
    I've played RPGs for at least 15 years and I cannot say I've seen that burst progression you mention. With a good, coherent DM not giving his PC group silly (too hard/ too easy) challenges, I've always seen steady leveling (and I've played a lot of different games, thank you very much, before you argue that not every game XP system works the same) be it with D&D, Warhammer FRP, Star Wars, Rolemaster, CoChtulhu, Stormbringer, Reve de Dragons, Empires & Dynasties, etc.
    V is at least a hundred years old. I know a specific age is given in one of the books, but I don't have my copies at hand right now, so let's assume she is 100, which I know is probably an underestimation. According to the Class and Level Geekery thread, V started the comic at level 8. V is now a minimum of level 15, as a result of the events taking place in the comic. How long have those events taken? A year? Two? V gained 8 levels in the previous 100 years of her existence, and 7 over the course of the last 2. V had been gaining levels at a rate of .08 levels per year for the last 100 years, and is now gaining levels at a rate of 3.5 levels per year. I, for one, would consider that a tremendous burst of leveling.

    Nope, sorry to burst your bubble but I'm with you on this one. I assume she's a member of the "broken " Monk Class. Add some crazy good paladin features and I'd say you don't need a higher level Mikko to be much more efficient than the OOTS at their respective level.
    ...you know that when people say the Monk is broken, they mean the bad kind of broken, not the good kind of broken, right?

    Edit: Ninja'd. Almost completely.
    Last edited by rgrekejin; 2012-09-15 at 02:55 PM.

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    Default Re: OOTS #863 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by AutomatedTeller View Post
    As for Elan - there's a very good reason why he would be bad in this fight, which is that his competence is tied to his puns. I'm guessing that if the opponent cannot hear the pun, he is no longer oddly effective Elan, but just a guy singing a song Elan.
    While it is true that Elan's opponent must be able to hear his pun to be an effective dashing swordsman, Roy benched Elan before he even knew Durkon wanted to cast holy word and deafen the Linear Guild.
    Last edited by KillingAScarab; 2012-09-15 at 12:04 PM.
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    Default Re: OOTS #863 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post

    No such assumption necessary. You said, "You can't have him cast much more powerful spells from 1 strip to another without raising questions." (Bolding mine.)

    That is exactly what Nale did. First-level spell, then, the next time we saw him cast a spell, fourth-level spell. No way around it; Rich did exactly what you said he couldn't do. And, in fact, he does it all the time; having a character cast a new higher-level spell is his most common way of heralding, "This character is now high enough level to cast this spell."
    Suggestion is only third level. And there isn't really an equivalent 2nd ot 3rd level spell that would have served as well as an escape with the +12 to jump checks. He was probably pretty close to casting 3rd level spells at that first meeting and then went off for a while murdering and stuff.

    So I didn't find anything like a jump there.

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    Default Re: OOTS #863 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by rgrekejin View Post
    You know... that's a decent point. Tarquin is even dressed in predominantly purple armor now, same as Roy. The fact that none of the Order could tell he wasn't Thog would imply that his armor leaves none of his flesh visible, so it is kind of conceivable that someone could confuse him for Roy.

    ...although his armor is only purple because of a magical illusion. As Xykon and Redcloak are heading in to the stronghold of a known illusionist, it seems pretty unlikely that they wouldn't have the spells necessary to see through it constantly on.
    Ooh, now here's an interesting thought. (Though to be fair, I'd call Roy's current armor blue, not purple, but they are similar. *shrug*)

    I doubt Xykon would give much thought to exactly who he was fighting, anyway - they're probably gonna get in the way regardless, so why not kill them even if they aren't exactly who he thinks they are? Wouldn't surprise me if Redcloak noticed the differences and rushed to tell Xykon, who then responded with exactly that thought and continued meteor swarming.
    LGBTitP

    Quote Originally Posted by ti'esar View Post
    I just want to say that if this isn't the weirdest line of argument I've seen this thread take yet, it's not for lack of trying.

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    Default Re: OOTS #863 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by zimmerwald1915 View Post
    why are people assuming Z's going to consciously betray Nale for Tarquin? He's stayed loyal to Nale for over eight hundred strips, and has been working behind Tarquin's back, on Nale's behalf, for a significant part of that time. A small kindness by Tarquin is enough to persude him otherwise? Why? Because Tarquin has magical friendship powers? Now, I like MLP as much as the next guy, but this story is not that one.
    Not for a simple healing salve, for sure.

    OTOH Tarquin does pretty much have magical friendship powers; his charisma is one of his big strengths. He's been shown multiple times charming the crap out of other NPCs (and at least one PC, for that matter!). He holds the whole continent under his thumb by subtle manipulation of people instead of force of arms. I would not put getting the drow on his side eventually as beyond his abilities.

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    Default Re: OOTS #863 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by luc258 View Post
    Because female drows are completely unbalanced - in all the best ways.
    I don't think we ever saw a female drow in this comic.

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    Default Re: OOTS #863 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by 2xMachina View Post
    I don't think we ever saw a female drow in this comic.
    Yes we have.

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    Default Re: OOTS #863 - The Discussion Thread

    Oops. didn't see the last page's links.

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    Default Re: OOTS #863 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay R View Post
    By the way, I am reminded that Xykon can't remember Roy's name. Is there any chance that if he sees a party of adventurers a few hundred feet from the pyramid, he will assume it's that group that's been trying to pester them? Redcloak might "recognize" Nale as Elan, and they've just been conveniently separated from the obvious differences - the demon, the succubus, and the lizard cleric of death.
    Xykon will probably barely remember that Redblade guy. Redcloak probably has little reason to recognize anyone who looks like Elan (though Elan did shout at him as that junk was fleeing Azure City), but he did have to just crush that resistance which Haley had started. Still, Tsukiko was the one who really seemed to know anything about her (unless there's something in the books).

    Quote Originally Posted by Sorator View Post
    Ooh, now here's an interesting thought. (Though to be fair, I'd call Roy's current armor blue, not purple, but they are similar. *shrug*)

    I doubt Xykon would give much thought to exactly who he was fighting, anyway - they're probably gonna get in the way regardless, so why not kill them even if they aren't exactly who he thinks they are? Wouldn't surprise me if Redcloak noticed the differences and rushed to tell Xykon, who then responded with exactly that thought and continued meteor swarming.
    You seem to be confusing Xykon with Belkar, Sorator. Xykon kills people or has them killed for him to find amusement in their deaths. Except, of course, when they teleport away from him like that elf with the bird and that paladin did. That elf with a bird who who made him make Redcloak make all those hobgoblins waste their lives for months looking for his phylactery. That elf with a bird who looked alot like that elf with a bird over... there...
    Last edited by KillingAScarab; 2012-09-15 at 07:19 PM.

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    Default Re: OOTS #863 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by KillingAScarab View Post
    You seem to be confusing Xykon with Belkar, Sorator. Xykon kills people or has them killed for him to find amusement in their deaths. Except, of course, when they teleport away from him like that elf with the bird and that paladin did. That elf with a bird who who made him make Redcloak make all those hobgoblins waste their lives for months looking for his phylactery. That elf with a bird who looked alot like that elf with a bird over... there...
    Sure, most of the time. But most of the time, he's not steps away from completing the goal he's been working toward for the last few years. I think he may be a touch more driven due to the recent phylactery mess, too.
    LGBTitP

    Quote Originally Posted by ti'esar View Post
    I just want to say that if this isn't the weirdest line of argument I've seen this thread take yet, it's not for lack of trying.

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    Default Re: OOTS #863 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    Let's unpack this assumption a bit.

    Set aside, for the moment, the argument that having levels in a class which shares stat dependencies with another class means you must necessarily have levels in that other class as well, so that every fighter is also a barbarian, every rogue also a ranger, every sorcerer also a bard.
    Where exactly did you read in my post that they MUST do so ?
    It just stands to reason if one wants to multiclass that it will be even easier and give better benefits if both class share the same primary stats. But you seem to know better.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    Do you think Tarquin has poor Wisdom and Charisma?
    No I don't because he didn't blow his Will Save, and he's got good CHA too since the twins share his good looks and at least one of them is CHA18+. Andnot everyone sees WIS as a dump stat.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    This is a flat-out misunderstanding of the rules. An annoyingly common misunderstanding...but a misunderstanding nonetheless.

    A blackguard who is an ex-paladin 9 (or below), or who has 10 levels of ex-paladin but chooses not to trade in all of them, or trades in some levels of ex-paladin but still has some left over, gets some trifling benefits for those nine (or however many) otherwise-useless trailing levels of ex-paladin. Such a blackguard is nowhere near as powerful as an otherwise-identical blackguard who is a fighter 9 instead.

    A blackguard who has 10 or more levels of ex-paladin can trade those levels in for blackguard levels, one for one. If s/he does so, that is all s/he gets from them. A blackguard 5 who traded in five levels of ex-paladin for those five blackguard levels is in no way more powerful than a blackguard 5 who gained those five levels with XP.

    Neither narratively, nor in terms of power, is being an ex-paladin more logical for a blackguard than being a fighter or fighter/rogue. "Tarquin was never a paladin" is a logical belief. "Therefore Tarquin has no blackguard levels" is not.
    Fortunately for us poor stupid readers, we've got G Gygax' secret son her to enlighten us once again...

    An ex paladin loses all his special powers when he turns to evil, but will regain about the same benefits and then some (extra sneak attack dmg, smite good, extra pet, LoH) by trading in his PAL lvls. How is that not an Advantage to trade useless lvls to gain instant lvl 10 in a prestige class ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    Take the character you've played who covered the most levels over the course of play. Might be a character who started at level 1 and leveled to 20, or a character who started at level 10 and leveled to 15, or a character who started at level 2 and leveled to 9, I don't know what characters you've played. But, for the one who covered the most levels over the course of play, how many years did that take? That is--assuming my first example above--how old was the character at level 1, and how old was the character at level 20? (If there were time-skips in the campaign, please mention them.)
    Moot point here again, are you talking real years of RPG playing or game years ? Be specific for once (like the taste of your own medicine ?). I've played some PCs for years sometimes once a week, sometimes once a day for months, and Ive always seen the same ratio of xp/session.

    [QUOTE=Kish;13902204]In any case, in OotS, Roy has gone from level 7-9 to around level 16 since the comic started. How many years of in-comic time would you say have passed?[QUOTE]

    Who cares, and how is that even a point since you believe in bursts of experience ? They might very well not earn a single XP for months and then gain 3 levels within a week.
    Did Rich draw a strip regularly over thhe past few years or did he have hiatus ?

    [QUOTE=Kish;13902204]LYou're not getting this. At least in OotS, the PCs are high level at this point, the spellcasters casting seventh and eighth-level spells. None of the human PCs is over the age of 30. That is a lot of leveling in a burst relative to their total lifespan. "I've always seen steady leveling over the course of a game" doesn't really relate to what I'm saying, because the "bursts" I'm talking about are "the course of a game."[QUOTE]
    So what, early levels are really easy to come by, this is only normal PCs should raise to lid level very quickly, then the process will slow down a lot

    Monk class broken...paladin class crazy good...the OotS beaten because Miko [QUOTE=Kish;13902204]was a standard monk/paladin...abba...wibble...ANYWAY.[QUOTE]
    You're right again I suppose, enhanced move, Evasion, a couple of extra feats, good reflex save, a bonus to save vs enchantement, possible WIS AC bonus with only a few Monk levels, and then a handy CHA bonus to every save, a couple immunities, buff spells, LoH are negligable, even more so at low-mid levels when saves are not important at all.... I'm seriously starting to wonder if we're talking about the same game -)

    [QUOTE=Kish;13902204]You're missing the point. You asserted that...let me find the words..."A couple levels over them won't be enough," for Tarquin being able to fight the entire Order.

    Why is that the case for Tarquin but not Miko?[QUOTE]
    Once again, I feel so lucky to have such a great teacher as you that spends some time to educate retarded children like myself... You might also want to drop that teacher tone, as well as the habit of using cool latin stuff to sound extra smart when a few english words will do the job...YMMV

    Fighters have feats, high AC, high HP and can pack a punch especially against low AC opponents, that's it. Mikko had spells, fancy moves, good saves, special abilities, and her pet to play with

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    No such assumption necessary. You said, "You can't have him cast much more powerful spells from 1 strip to another without raising questions." (Bolding mine.)

    That is exactly what Nale did. First-level spell, then, the next time we saw him cast a spell, fourth-level spell. No way around it; Rich did exactly what you said he couldn't do. And, in fact, he does it all the time; having a character cast a new higher-level spell is his most common way of heralding, "This character is now high enough level to cast this spell."
    How will a Suggestion spell help Nale flee Elan when he needs to run fast and/ or jump high to escape both OOTS and nearby monsters ? Thank you very much for your pointless question though.

    On the other hand, you could blame Rich for giving PCs/ NPCs the right spells to use in situations to come (a la Raistlin in Dragonlance who prepares spells that will be very handy later on), with a few exceptions though (the first V and black dragon encounter comes to mind)



    I've tried to stay civil in my previous posts despite your constant nitpicking over silly stuff, but I won't anymore. I don't mind it when people disagree with me and argument things with clear, valid points, but if your only goal is to run for "the anal retentive teacher in the plaground" (don't worry you'll get my vote) who knows it all, and to sound like a jerk who wants to be right at all cost no matter what we answer, then please do so with someone else because I won't bother answering you, it's no use anyway.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    Let's unpack this assumption a bit.

    Set aside, for the moment, the argument that having levels in a class which shares stat dependencies with another class means you must necessarily have levels in that other class as well, so that every fighter is also a barbarian, every rogue also a ranger, every sorcerer also a bard.
    Where exactly did you read in my post that they MUST do so ?
    It just stands to reason if one wants to multiclass that it will be even easier and give better benefits if both class share the same primary stats. But you seem to know better.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    Do you think Tarquin has poor Wisdom and Charisma?
    No I don't because he didn't blow his Will Save, and he's got good CHA too since the twins share his good looks and at least one of them is CHA18+. Andnot everyone sees WIS as a dump stat.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    This is a flat-out misunderstanding of the rules. An annoyingly common misunderstanding...but a misunderstanding nonetheless.

    A blackguard who is an ex-paladin 9 (or below), or who has 10 levels of ex-paladin but chooses not to trade in all of them, or trades in some levels of ex-paladin but still has some left over, gets some trifling benefits for those nine (or however many) otherwise-useless trailing levels of ex-paladin. Such a blackguard is nowhere near as powerful as an otherwise-identical blackguard who is a fighter 9 instead.

    A blackguard who has 10 or more levels of ex-paladin can trade those levels in for blackguard levels, one for one. If s/he does so, that is all s/he gets from them. A blackguard 5 who traded in five levels of ex-paladin for those five blackguard levels is in no way more powerful than a blackguard 5 who gained those five levels with XP.

    Neither narratively, nor in terms of power, is being an ex-paladin more logical for a blackguard than being a fighter or fighter/rogue. "Tarquin was never a paladin" is a logical belief. "Therefore Tarquin has no blackguard levels" is not.
    Fortunately for us poor stupid readers, we've got Gary Gygax' secret son her to enlighten us once again...

    An ex paladin loses all his special powers when he turns to evil, but will regain about the same benefits and then some (extra sneak attack dmg, smite good, extra pet, LoH) by trading in his PAL lvls. How is that not an Advantage to trade useless lvls to gain instant lvl 10 in a prestige class ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    Take the character you've played who covered the most levels over the course of play. Might be a character who started at level 1 and leveled to 20, or a character who started at level 10 and leveled to 15, or a character who started at level 2 and leveled to 9, I don't know what characters you've played. But, for the one who covered the most levels over the course of play, how many years did that take? That is--assuming my first example above--how old was the character at level 1, and how old was the character at level 20? (If there were time-skips in the campaign, please mention them.)
    Moot point here again, are you talking real years of RPG playing or game years ? Be specific for once (like the taste of your own medicine ?). I've played some PCs for years sometimes once a week, sometimes once a day for months, and Ive always seen the same ratio of xp/session.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    In any case, in OotS, Roy has gone from level 7-9 to around level 16 since the comic started. How many years of in-comic time would you say have passed?
    Who cares, and how is that even a point since you believe in bursts of experience ? They might very well not earn a single XP for months and then gain 3 levels within a week.
    Did Rich draw a strip regularly over thhe past few years or did he have hiatus ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    LYou're not getting this. At least in OotS, the PCs are high level at this point, the spellcasters casting seventh and eighth-level spells. None of the human PCs is over the age of 30. That is a lot of leveling in a burst relative to their total lifespan. "I've always seen steady leveling over the course of a game" doesn't really relate to what I'm saying, because the "bursts" I'm talking about are "the course of a game."
    So what, early levels are really easy to come by, this is only normal PCs should raise to lid level very quickly, then the process will slow down a lot

    Monk class broken...paladin class crazy good...the OotS beaten because Miko
    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    was a standard monk/paladin...abba...wibble...ANYWAY.
    You're right again I suppose, enhanced move, Evasion, a couple of extra feats, good reflex save, a bonus to save vs enchantement, possible WIS AC bonus with only a few Monk levels, and then a handy CHA bonus to every save, a couple immunities, buff spells, LoH are negligable, even more so at low-mid levels when saves are not important at all.... I'm seriously starting to wonder if we're talking about the same game -)

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    You're missing the point. You asserted that...let me find the words..."A couple levels over them won't be enough," for Tarquin being able to fight the entire Order.

    Why is that the case for Tarquin but not Miko?
    Once again, I feel so lucky to have such a great teacher as you that spends some time to educate retarded children like myself... You might also want to drop that teacher tone, as well as the habit of using cool latin stuff to sound extra smart when a few english words will do the job...YMMV

    Fighters have feats, high AC, high HP and can pack a punch especially against low AC opponents, that's it. Mikko had spells, fancy moves, good saves, special abilities, and her pet to play with

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    No such assumption necessary. You said, "You can't have him cast much more powerful spells from 1 strip to another without raising questions." (Bolding mine.)

    That is exactly what Nale did. First-level spell, then, the next time we saw him cast a spell, fourth-level spell. No way around it; Rich did exactly what you said he couldn't do. And, in fact, he does it all the time; having a character cast a new higher-level spell is his most common way of heralding, "This character is now high enough level to cast this spell."
    How will a Suggestion spell help Nale flee Elan when he needs to run fast and/ or jump high to escape both OOTS and nearby monsters ? Thank you very much for your pointless question though.

    On the other hand, you could blame Rich for giving PCs/ NPCs the right spells to use in situations to come (a la Raistlin in Dragonlance who prepares spells that will be very handy later on), with a few exceptions though (the first V and black dragon encounter comes to mind)



    I've tried to stay civil in my previous posts despite your constant nitpicking over silly stuff, but I won't anymore. I don't mind it when people disagree with me and argument things with clear, valid points, but if your only goal is to run for "the anal retentive teacher in the plaground" (don't worry you'll get my vote) who knows it all, and to sound like a jerk who wants to be right at all cost no matter what we answer, then please do so with someone else because I won't bother answering you, it's no use anyway.

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    FWIW as a general note on the Miko thing, when the giant actually wrote out the fight with Miko she didnt seem especially higher level, but its worth noting that when he did it he rolled a rare natural one on his knowledge (DnD mechanics) check because he misremembered the resist check for stunning fist which ended up being rather central to Miko's strategy
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    six guns is not actually a verb.
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    Quote Originally Posted by hakflem View Post
    Monk class broken...paladin class crazy good...the OotS beaten because Miko
    You're right again I suppose, enhanced move, Evasion, a couple of extra feats, good reflex save, a bonus to save vs enchantement, possible WIS AC bonus with only a few Monk levels, and then a handy CHA bonus to every save, a couple immunities, buff spells, LoH are negligable, even more so at low-mid levels when saves are not important at all.... I'm seriously starting to wonder if we're talking about the same game -)
    The problem with saying "Monk is Broken" or "Paladin is C**** Good" is that it is not entirely accurate, at least not in 3.5.

    Spoiler
    Show
    The Monk and Paladin, as you point out, have some pretty decent class features. The problem is that they epitomize the idea of Multiple Attribute Deficiency, or MAD; for a Monk or Paladin to be capable of even using most of their abilities, they need to roll exceptionally well on their starting abilities.

    Monks, for example, need high Dexterity because they cannot wear armor and keep their best abilities, need high Strength and Constitution to survive as front-line melee characters with 3/4 BAB and a d8 hit die, need high Wisdom because it powers most of their class features, and need high Intelligence for skill points and to qualify for Combat Expertise feats. The only stat they can dump is Charisma.

    Add on Paladin, which needs Charisma for their best abilities, and the only way Miko could be effective is if she rolled at least 15 on every single one of her starting abilities. Not impossible, but pretty unlikely.

    In addition, every single thing a Monk or Paladin can do is done much better by another less MAD class. Clerics are much stronger melee combatants than Paladins due to their multitude buff spells, without sacrificing casting or healing the way a Paladin does. Psychic Warriors and Unarmed Swordsages have all the same fluff as Monks, and most of the same abilities, while also being demonstrably more versatile and operating off fewer abilities.


    When people say that Monk and Paladin, Tier 5 classes both, are bad, what they mean is that those classes are very very difficult to build at the same level of power of a bog-standard Bard. It is possible, and fun, to make strong capable Monks and Paladins, but it is more about luck when rolling and optimization knowledge of the player than any inherent power in the class.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hakflem View Post
    An ex paladin loses all his special powers when he turns to evil, but will regain about the same benefits and then some (extra sneak attack dmg, smite good, extra pet, LoH) by trading in his PAL lvls. How is that not an Advantage to trade useless lvls to gain instant lvl 10 in a prestige class ?
    I don't think you understand how the Blackguard/Paladin thing works.

    Quote Originally Posted by d20 srd
    11 or more

    A fallen paladin of this stature immediately gains a blackguard level for each level of paladin he trades in.

    The character level of the character does not change. With the loss of paladin levels, the character no longer gains as many extra abilities for being a fallen paladin.
    Emphasis mine. Say Character A takes ten levels of the Blackguard prestige class. Character B takes eleven levels of paladin. When character B turns evil, they trade in ten levels of Paladin for ten levels of Blackguard. Since character B no longer has those ten levels of Paladin, they no longer get the extra benefits that a Blackguard gets for being a Fallen Paladin. A Blackguard who has traded in ten levels of Paladin for ten levels of Blackguard gets exactly the same benefits from his ten levels of Blackguard as a character who was never a Paladin, but took ten levels of Blackguard. If the ex-Paladin had more than ten levels of Paladin, then they're stuck with the remainder. Those levels do still qualify for the Fallen Paladin perks, but those perks are so weak when compared with what the character could have gotten by being, say, a multiclass fighter/rogue, that the Paladin really doesn't come out ahead here.

    Quote Originally Posted by hakflem
    Moot point here again, are you talking real years of RPG playing or game years ? Be specific for once (like the taste of your own medicine ?). I've played some PCs for years sometimes once a week, sometimes once a day for months, and Ive always seen the same ratio of xp/session.

    Who cares, and how is that even a point since you believe in bursts of experience ? They might very well not earn a single XP for months and then gain 3 levels within a week.
    Did Rich draw a strip regularly over thhe past few years or did he have hiatus ?

    So what, early levels are really easy to come by, this is only normal PCs should raise to lid level very quickly, then the process will slow down a lot
    I really don't think you understand Kish's argument.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish
    Your original argument was that Tarquin must be epic level because he'd been adventuring so much longer than the Order. I said that how long he'd been adventuring was not strong evidence, since adventurers level in bursts, not steadily. The Order has, indeed, gained a large number of levels in a relatively short amount of time. That's the point.
    Nothing about real-world time matters at all here. What is being pointed out to you is that adventurers do not level steadily over the course of their lifetimes, but instead gain most of their levels in a few short bursts of time (usually referred to as "adventures").

    Let's take Haley as an example. According to the Class and Level Geekery thread, Haley started the comic at level 8. She is now at least level 15. She has gained seven levels over the course of the comic. Haley's age is also known to be 24 or 25. The starting age for a Rogue is 15+1d4 years, so we'll say she stated at 18. That means she has been adventuring for 7 years. The events of this comic take place over, what, two years? A year and a half? We'll call it two. So, for the first five years of her career, Haley gained 8 levels, a rate of 1.6 levels per year. In the last two years, she's gained seven levels, a rate of 3.5 levels per year. That is what is meant by "gaining levels in a burst". She's gained a bunch of levels quickly over the course of an adventure. If you are correct and level gain is a constant process, then by the time she's thirty Haley should be approximately level 33 given her current rate of level gain. I think we can both acknowledge that that is probably not going to happen.

    You try to correct for this by arguing that the process of leveling should slow down a lot at higher levels, which would seem to contradict the argument you're trying to make about level gain being constant, but whatever. Since your original argument was that Tarquin has to be much higher level than the OotS because he's been adventuring so much longer than them, shouldn't Tarquin have hit the wall at some point, and started to gain levels really slowly if it takes longer to gain the higher ones? If so, why does he have to be much higher level than the OotS? Maybe he's stuck just a few levels above them. Which is it - is level gain constant, or is it slower at higher levels?

    Quote Originally Posted by hakflem
    You're right again I suppose, enhanced move, Evasion, a couple of extra feats, good reflex save, a bonus to save vs enchantement, possible WIS AC bonus with only a few Monk levels, and then a handy CHA bonus to every save, a couple immunities, buff spells, LoH are negligable, even more so at low-mid levels when saves are not important at all.... I'm seriously starting to wonder if we're talking about the same game -)
    If you're contending that a Monk/Paladin is an overpowered class combination, maybe we're not talking about the same game. The post above this one, by Water_Bear, does as good a job as any of addressing this.

    As a final note, please stop being so rude to other people just for disagreeing with you. All Kish or anyone else has done is point out various flaws in your arguments, and you're treating them like they've made some kind of personal attack. It's really very unseemly.
    Last edited by rgrekejin; 2012-09-16 at 01:22 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rgrekejin View Post
    Since your original argument was that Tarquin has to be much higher level than the OotS because he's been adventuring so much longer than them, shouldn't Tarquin have hit the wall at some point, and started to gain levels really slowly if it takes longer to gain the higher ones? If so, why does he have to be much higher level than the OotS? Maybe he's stuck just a few levels above them. Which is it - is level gain constant, or is it slower at higher levels?
    Has Tarquin been *adventuring* for such a long time? So far as I can see he hasn't done much real adventuring in 20 years--he's been too busy running all the countries on the Western Continent simultaneously, which might be good for some XP if you have a friendly DM, but definitely not as much as killing all the high-level nasties in the region would.

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    Quote Originally Posted by factotum View Post
    Has Tarquin been *adventuring* for such a long time? So far as I can see he hasn't done much real adventuring in 20 years--he's been too busy running all the countries on the Western Continent simultaneously, which might be good for some XP if you have a friendly DM, but definitely not as much as killing all the high-level nasties in the region would.
    Doesn't he get XP for toppling a country or two every few years?
    Last edited by M.A.D; 2012-09-16 at 12:51 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by M.A.D View Post
    Doesn't he get XP for toppling a country or two every few years?
    Only if he overcomes some kind of challenge in doing so.
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    Quote Originally Posted by rgrekejin View Post
    I don't think you understand how the Blackguard/Paladin thing works.

    Emphasis mine. Say Character A takes ten levels of the Blackguard prestige class. Character B takes eleven levels of paladin. When character B turns evil, they trade in ten levels of Paladin for ten levels of Blackguard. Since character B no longer has those ten levels of Paladin, they no longer get the extra benefits that a Blackguard gets for being a Fallen Paladin. A Blackguard who has traded in ten levels of Paladin for ten levels of Blackguard gets exactly the same benefits from his ten levels of Blackguard as a character who was never a Paladin, but took ten levels of Blackguard. If the ex-Paladin had more than ten levels of Paladin, then they're stuck with the remainder. Those levels do still qualify for the Fallen Paladin perks, but those perks are so weak when compared with what the character could have gotten by being, say, a multiclass fighter/rogue, that the Paladin really doesn't come out ahead here.
    that seems really odd, it would mean to to trade in 10 levels of ex paladin and get the perks as a 10th level paladin you'd need to be a lvl20 PAL, which would be completely ridiculous IMHO. if that's the case, then please both accept my apology.

    It's really not the way I'd read it, and I don't think that was the way it worked when I was toying with the Code Monkey Publishing Etools some time ago, but I might very well be wrong here

    The way I saw it was you're an 12ex paladin, you can trade in 10 levels, and get the benefits of said 10 ex pal levels plus the advantage of becoming lvl10 BG.
    So you're now 10/2 BG/ex pal


    Quote Originally Posted by rgrekejin View Post
    Nothing about real-world time matters at all here. What is being pointed out to you is that adventurers do not level steadily over the course of their lifetimes, but instead gain most of their levels in a few short bursts of time (usually referred to as "adventures").

    Let's take Haley as an example. According to the Class and Level Geekery thread, Haley started the comic at level 8. She is now at least level 15. She has gained seven levels over the course of the comic. Haley's age is also known to be 24 or 25. The starting age for a Rogue is 15+1d4 years, so we'll say she stated at 18. That means she has been adventuring for 7 years. The events of this comic take place over, what, two years? A year and a half? We'll call it two. So, for the first five years of her career, Haley gained 8 levels, a rate of 1.6 levels per year. In the last two years, she's gained seven levels, a rate of 3.5 levels per year. That is what is meant by "gaining levels in a burst". She's gained a bunch of levels quickly over the course of an adventure. If you are correct and level gain is a constant process, then by the time she's thirty Haley should be approximately level 33 given her current rate of level gain. I think we can both acknowledge that that is probably not going to happen.
    I get his point, but I just don't buy it.
    The starting age is completely irrelevant. I see the way PC level like a NFL player carrier. They get X years to play as much as possible, get as many rings and the best contracts they can in a limited span before they retire.

    I see non adventuring time as absolutely irrelevant as far as RPG PCs are concerned. Rich could very well show us some strips of the OOTS splitting to live their respective lives for a few months/ years before they resume adventuring, settle down, build their tower/ hobbit hole/ house/ guild? but my bet is no one would be interested in seeing that.

    Let's take V for exemple, and his starting age. Elves are supposed to be superb wizards, and yet they will start as lvl1 after several decades of hard training with their wizard master ? Now let's compare that to any stupid 17yo human would be wizard who went to some magic university, skipped most lectures to get some booze & bone some wenches and who will also start playing as a lvl1 wizard ? What way would you chose ?

    Could you say from that how many cantrips & lvl 1 spells/ year both human and elves get and say that humans are way better because they do it way faster ? Rich even wrote a strip to show the silliness of such reasonning

    Quote Originally Posted by rgrekejin View Post
    You try to correct for this by arguing that the process of leveving should slow down a lot at higher levels, which would seem to contradict the argument you're trying to make about level gain being constant, but whatever. Since your original argument was that Tarquin has to be much higher level than the OotS because he's been adventuring so much longer than them, shouldn't Tarquin have hit the wall at some point, and started to gain levels really slowly if it takes longer to gain the higher ones? If so, why does he have to be much higher level than the OotS? Maybe he's stuck just a few levels above them. Which is it - is level gain constant, or is it slower at higher levels?
    You're right here, I should have given better exemples.

    To get any level, you'll need to kill X Mobs Of ECL Y, Y being about the same level as your group of PCs. If. I'm not mistaken, this process is true qt any level

    Early on this can go very fast, a dozen of skellies or Orcs will make you ding. But later on killing monsters of your ECL will require more time, more resources, will sometimes fail (-> downtime, rest, prepare new spells), and will be harder even if your group of PCs also got more powerful.

    I don't claim to be true about Tarquin, but the way I saw him have fun with the whole OOTS (using may be 50-60% of his capabilities) and then kick their butt when he's tired of this little game made me think he's got to be more than just a few level above Durkon or Roy. Even more so since I think he's plain fighter and not some fancy multi classed/ cheesy prestige class


    Quote Originally Posted by rgrekejin View Post
    If you're contending that a Monk/Paladin is an overpowered class combination, maybe we're not talking about the same game. The post above this one, by Water_Bear, does as good a job as any of addressing this.
    I didn't say they're all powerful, just that. They can get a very good synergy of boni, immunities, extra feats, and that can give a very efficient character

    Quote Originally Posted by rgrekejin View Post
    As a final note, please stop being so rude to other people just for disagreeing with you. All Kish or anyone else has done is point out various flaws in your arguments, and you're treating them like some kind of personal attack. It's really very unseemly.
    Once again my apology if you felt it that way, but I don't think I've been "rude" to anyone but Kish. I'm a really nice bloke nd being wrong has never been a problem with me, I've been and always be glad to admit I was wrong if that's the case :-)

    I've always treated people the way they did me, so if some sarcastic know it all who looks down on me and keeps writing as if I had a 70 IQ who can't understand squat and keeps sounding like he knows better, then I will tell him I feel that way.

    But no worries, there won't be anymore rudeness to poor Kish which I guess I will ignore from now on. Unless he goes down from his e-pedestal and quits his condescending style.

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    Quote Originally Posted by snikrept View Post
    r.e. Tarquin being super prepared: Were he a PC, Tarquin would be *normally* prepared by the standards of many campaigns. Or even underprepared. All he brought for healing options is that jar of ointment that effectively does CLW, at his level of resources? And he didn't even bring it with him into the dungeon? And he has no backup damage weapon?
    Grossly underprepared. My wife's current character has 8 different weapons on her person (most in extradimensional storage), an endless quiver + a bunch of special material arrows, 3 magically summoned mounts and two normal mounts (one flying, one non), two command word items that teleport her and companions to refuge locations, and a number of other items.

    She's not crazy prepared. No one in the game would accuse her of being crazy prepared, heck she's only got TWO ways to teleport out of trouble and both of them need a command word, that's almost crazy LACK of preparations.

    Previous editions (and Tarquin started under previous editions), I've seen characters much lower level than we know Tarquin to be duel by throwing their spare magic items at each other. They had bags of holding FULL of +1 and +2 crap that the random treasure tables and various modules in those older allegedly low magic games gave out (almost all your XP came from found items, but then you were largely stuck with the items given the lack of "magic-mart").

    Tarquin has ONE backup weapon, ONE weak healing item, both back with his pack rather than in his extradimensional storage, and people are complaining about the level of preparation being too HIGH!

    DougL

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    Speaking of that single weak healing item...If it is called "Cleric in a Can", is 71% magic and contains the heart of a virgin killed on their wedding night, how likely is it that said heart(s) could be that of one or more Clerics? Just sayin'...
    Last edited by IW Judicator; 2012-09-16 at 04:09 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hakflem View Post
    that seems really odd, it would mean to to trade in 10 levels of ex paladin and get the perks as a 10th level paladin you'd need to be a lvl20 PAL, which would be completely ridiculous IMHO. if that's the case, then please both accept my apology.
    That is correct. It is always possible to houserule in something else, but by default, this is the way it works. The reason for the bonus perks is not to make Blackguards who were once Paladins more powerful than ordinary Blackguards, but to make ex-Paladin levels semi-viable for those characters that are stuck with them. A level in Fallen Paladin is more or less equivalent to a level in the Warrior NPC class. NPC classes are by design weaker than PC classes, so to be playable, the ex-Paladin needs something to cover for the class features they lost by falling. The bonus features for Blackguard are designed to make a character with ex-Paladin levels playable. If the character can trade in their Paladin levels for Blackguard levels, then they gain the class features a Blackguard normally has, and therefore don't need the perks for ex-Paladins to pick up the slack.

    Quote Originally Posted by hakflem
    I get his point, but I just don't buy it.
    The starting age is completely irrelevant. I see the way PC level like a NFL player carrier. They get X years to play as much as possible, get as many rings and the best contracts they can in a limited span before they retire.

    I see non adventuring time as absolutely irrelevant as far as RPG PCs are concerned. Rich could very well show us some strips of the OOTS splitting to live their respective lives for a few months/ years before they resume adventuring, settle down, build their tower/ hobbit hole/ house/ guild? but my bet is no one would be interested in seeing that.
    Ah, I see your point. We really don't disagree on anything fundamental here, we're just using terminology differently. When I say a "burst of activity", I'm referring to that person's adventuring career, in respect to their entire lifetime. But, while actually adventuring, the level gain occurs at a relatively constant rate, which is what you're arguing. I more or less agree with that statement. The question becomes, then, how long did Tarquin adventure before he retired? Did he actually adventure longer than the OotS? Did he retire young? I don't think there's really any way of knowing. All we can be sure of is that he's higher level than the OotS. You're convinced that he's much higher than them. I'm not so convinced, but I think there's reasonable room for disagreement on that point.

    Quote Originally Posted by hakflem
    Could you say from that how many cantrips & lvl 1 spells/ year both human and elves get and say that humans are way better because they do it way faster ? Rich even wrote a strip to show the silliness of such reasonning
    He did write a strip lampooning such reasoning. I would like to point out, however, that one thing that strip shows is that such silliness actually does take place in this universe.

    Quote Originally Posted by hakflem
    To get any level, you'll need to kill X Mobs Of ECL Y, Y being about the same level as your group of PCs. If. I'm not mistaken, this process is true qt any level

    Early on this can go very fast, a dozen of skellies or Orcs will make you ding. But later on killing monsters of your ECL will require more time, more resources, will sometimes fail (-> downtime, rest, prepare new spells), and will be harder even if your group of PCs also got more powerful.
    ...I'm not sure this is always true. According to my trusty DMG, Challenge Ratings are calculated such as that you should always need exactly 13 and 1/3 level-appropriate encounters worth of experience to level regardless of what level you are. But the appropriateness of your encounters to your level is always going to vary widely with any DM, so is probably more a function of DMing style than anything built hard and fast in to the rules.

    I guess what it boils down to is simply a disagreement over in what light we view Tarquin's recent battles. The ease with which he's dealt with the OotS up to this point seems to you to suggest that he's Epic. To me, they suggest that he's high level, but I don't see any reason just yet to assume that he's Epic. There's nothing he's done that a 18th or 19th or so level character couldn't have done, and I don't see any reason to assume he's Epic until he does something that can only be explained by him being Epic. But this is a point on which reasonable people can differ, so I'm not going to try to argue you out of your position. I'll simply state that I haven't seen enough evidence yet to convince myself that Tarquin is Epic.
    Last edited by rgrekejin; 2012-09-16 at 06:09 PM.

  29. - Top - End - #269
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    RedWizardGuy

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    Default Re: OOTS #863 - The Discussion Thread

    Okay. My inner logic specialist (logician? Huh. Firefox's spellchecker accepts it.) is crying from the miscommunications in this thread, so Ima clear some of em up and summarize some of the discussion, focusing on the points between Kish & hakflem because they're getting snippity and I don't like that.

    (In writing this, I'm attempting to actively avoid a condescending tone - please do not read it with one. I do this because I think it's simpler to look at discussion this way when they become this complex, not because I believe academia has the solution to every problem or that I'm better than anyone else. My apologies if this attempt is not fully successful upon each individual's reading of the following.)



    Starting point:
    Quote Originally Posted by FujinAkari
    We should note that neither epic level nor warrior[/fighter] are anything more than speculation and certainly not reinforced by anything in the comic.

    All that we KNOW abotu Tarquin is that he is at least 17th level.
    Let's first tackle the whole issue of Tarquin's class, in particular his Blackguard potential.

    Here are the quotes I'm drawing from: (my apologies for not linking to every single one of them)
    Spoiler
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    Quote Originally Posted by hakflem
    ...He's definitely not a Barbarian (not thick enough), nor Ranger, or Paladin (yeah right) so I guess Blackguard is also out of the way too. What's left ? Assassin ? Dwarven Defender ? Eldricht Knight ? Marshal ?

    With such a high BAB, fighter is the only answer we have left IMO, but who am I to make such dumb asumptions ?
    Quote Originally Posted by Kish
    This sentence belongs in the dictionary under "non-sequitur."
    Quote Originally Posted by hakflem
    Alright, I may not have been clear enough in my previous post. I meant that since most Blackguards seem to be former Paladins (sharing the same important stats like CHA and getting huge benefits from trading their ex PAL levels in) I assumed that Tarquin was not likely to be a Black Guard.
    Quote Originally Posted by Kish
    Let's unpack this assumption a bit.

    Set aside, for the moment, the argument that having levels in a class which shares stat dependencies with another class means you must necessarily have levels in that other class as well, so that every fighter is also a barbarian, every rogue also a ranger, every sorcerer also a bard.

    Do you think Tarquin has poor Wisdom and Charisma?

    If you don't, "Blackguards use Wisdom and Charisma" makes an odd argument that he would not be one, does it not?
    Quote Originally Posted by hakflem
    Where exactly did you read in my post that they MUST do so ?
    It just stands to reason if one wants to multiclass that it will be even easier and give better benefits if both class share the same primary stats. But you seem to know better.

    Point-by-Point Summary
    Spoiler
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    hakflem: Thesis 1: It is reasonable to assume Tarquin primarily has levels in fighter.
    Point 1. Tarquin needs to be a martial class to do what the comic shows him doing.
    Point 2. We can reasonable rule out Barbarian, Ranger, Paladin, and Blackguard as classes/PrCs he primarily has levels in.
    Point 3. There are no remaining core martial classes.
    Conclusion: Tarquin must therefore primarily have levels in Fighter.

    Kish: Counterpoint 2: It is not reasonable to rule out Blackguard, or at least not by the line of reasoning you presented.

    hakflem: Thesis 2: Tarquin is probably not a Blackguard.
    Point 4. Most Blackguards seem to be former paladins, since they a) share the same stats and b) have exclusive benefits for taking levels in both.
    Point 5. Tarquin is probably not a Paladin.
    Conclusion: Therefore, Tarquin is probably also not a Blackguard.

    Kish: Counterpoint 4. Ex-paladin Blackguards are actually statistically worse off than, say, fighter/rogue Blackguards, as the 'exclusive benefits' really aren't that great. So, it doesn't really follow that most blackguards are former paladins.
    Conclusion: Tarquin could still be a Blackguard, even without taking levels of Paladin, and your Conclusion is now invalid.

    Cutting out the excess side arguments and squabbling, that's what I find (at least on that subject). Thoughts?

    Now let's do the same for his level, specifically Epic vs high-teens.

    Again, these are the quotes I'm drawing from:
    Spoiler
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    Quote Originally Posted by hakflem
    Considering Tarquin must have been adventuring for far longer than The OOTS have, seems to have been be very succesful at staying alive despite a lot of opposition, monsters, PCs, assassins, that he's been the ruler of an empire of doom for a long time, and that said OOTS members are around level 15 by the end of the latest book IIRC, I'd even bet he's to lvl 30 than lvl17.
    ...
    Don't let his fleeing and defensive fighting deceive you, he can single handedly kick the OOTs' butt any time he wants just like Xykon would, and he will do so when he's done playing with both his sons.
    Quote Originally Posted by Kish
    You also originally asserted Tarquin was... epic-level... And other than "he's been adventuring for a lot longer than the OotS," which is evidence although not very compelling evidence (how many levels do you figure Roy's gained in the past, oh, five years or so? Adventurers level in bursts, not steadily), there seems to be a marked lack of evidence in your post that he's epic-level.
    Quote Originally Posted by Sweet_Goddess
    He is higher level then Durkon (I doubt he is epic. Epic is a major deal, Epic requires far more dedication and focus then Tarquin has had time for)
    ...
    If Tarquin was Epic level, with so much specialization, he'd have done far more damage with any strike... (Seriously, check what Thog used to do with his Greataxe, and try to argue that an Epic character with specializations with one would not be able to one shot most foes)
    Quote Originally Posted by hakflem
    On the matter of OOTS levelling, I think you guys underestimate how far they've gone since the time they had to flee from a dozen goblins or a couple ogres. Trying to guess their lvl according to their number of attacks or highest level of spells cast can be done but won't be very accurate. Just like stating that according to my experience as a RPG player, when Roy came in possession of a +5 sword a very long time ago I will guess that he must have been lvl 13-14 at the very least at the time.

    And as I pointed in a previous post, you need to be fairly powerful/ high level to be able to handle almost on your own a whole group of lvl 15-16ish PCs, and a couple levels over them won't be enough, which is why I wrote I thought Tarquin's epic level. Did yo usee how easily he passed saves against D spells (want to try & estimate the DC of that Will Save which as everyone knows is the forte of Fighters? and how he got rid of R and B ? got mildly annoyed by H's backstabs which must pack quite a punch, how easily he avoids/snatches H's arrows?
    ...
    If you're a meatshield, with high AC, high INT, the best defensive tools out there are Combat Expertise & Defending Weapon. YMMV.
    ...
    Yes I'm supposing T's an epic level fighter with lots of flashy Feats he'll use soon.
    Quote Originally Posted by Kish
    ...Once again, not really a reply to what it's claimed to be. Your original argument was that Tarquin must be epic level because he'd been adventuring so much longer than the Order. I said that how long he'd been adventuring was not strong evidence, since adventurers level in bursts, not steadily. The Order has, indeed, gained a large number of levels in a relatively short amount of time. That's the point.
    ...
    So I take it you're a member of the "Miko was much higher level than the Order when she beat them up" club.

    I'm not. Tarquin hasn't done anything that couldn't be done by a fighter the same level as Roy who focused on defensive rather than offensive feats, except possibly the Will saves, which are most likely explained by some manner of item (even if he's epic level, if he doesn't have any kind of item that boosts his Will saves in some way, he's making absolutely no effort to cover his Achilles heel, which would be odd).
    Quote Originally Posted by lio45
    I think you don't understand one fundamental trait of "OOTS leveling": NPCs don't need to actually level up. They can be paradropped in front of the PCs any time and when that happens, they'll magically be at the "right" level, appropriate for the story and challenge.
    Quote Originally Posted by Snails
    Tarquin could be as low as level 15-16 or as high as Epic. More likely somewhere in between.

    I have two quibbles with Tarquin being Epic level:
    (1) It is impressive to toy with a group of opposing characters just 2 or 3 levels lower than you, because it can easily go wrong. If Tarquin is 21st+ level, it is just toying with outright inferiors. That is not impressive at all. It is just a DM Pet peeing on the PCs with impunity (yet again).

    (2) I have suspension of disbelief difficulties with Epic NPCs lying around. The OotsVerse doesn't feel (to me) like a world where there are many challenges around to actually push past the mid-teens. IMHO, of course.
    Quote Originally Posted by hakflem
    I agree with you as far as one shot vilains are concerned, but that would be silly for recurent ones like Red Cloak for exemple. You can't have him cast much more powerful spells from 1 strip to another without raising questions.
    Quote Originally Posted by Kish
    Really?

    So you had questions when Nale went from Expeditious Retreat to Suggestion? Or when Redcloak summoned a fiendish elephant?
    Quote Originally Posted by hakflem
    Nope, sorry to burst your bubble but I'm with you on this one. I assume she's a member of the "broken " Monk Class. Add some crazy good paladin features and I'd say you don't need a higher level Mikko to be much more efficient than the OOTS at their respective level.
    ...
    Why do you assume he didn't have both spells in the first place ?
    Quote Originally Posted by Kish
    You're missing the point. You asserted that...let me find the words..."A couple levels over them won't be enough," for Tarquin being able to fight the entire Order.

    Why is that the case for Tarquin but not Miko?
    ...
    No such assumption necessary. You said, "You can't have him cast much more powerful spells from 1 strip to another without raising questions." (Bolding mine.)

    That is exactly what Nale did. First-level spell, then, the next time we saw him cast a spell, fourth-level spell. [Actually 3rd, not 4th.] No way around it; Rich did exactly what you said he couldn't do. And, in fact, he does it all the time; having a character cast a new higher-level spell is his most common way of heralding, "This character is now high enough level to cast this spell."
    Quote Originally Posted by hakflem
    You're right again I suppose, enhanced move, Evasion, a couple of extra feats, good reflex save, a bonus to save vs enchantement, possible WIS AC bonus with only a few Monk levels, and then a handy CHA bonus to every save, a couple immunities, buff spells, LoH are negligable, even more so at low-mid levels when saves are not important at all.... I'm seriously starting to wonder if we're talking about the same game -)
    ...
    Fighters have feats, high AC, high HP and can pack a punch especially against low AC opponents, that's it. Mikko had spells, fancy moves, good saves, special abilities, and her pet to play with
    ...
    How will a Suggestion spell help Nale flee Elan when he needs to run fast and/ or jump high to escape both OOTS and nearby monsters ?
    Quote Originally Posted by rgrekejin
    If you're contending that a Monk/Paladin is an overpowered class combination, maybe we're not talking about the same game. The post above this one, by Water_Bear, does as good a job as any of addressing this.


    I see several sub-arguments here, so I'll try and break it down by subject now, from the shortest & most-specific first to the longest & most-broad last.

    On the subject of Nale's spells:
    Spoiler
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    lio45: Point 1. NPCs can level automatically with their nemesis.
    Conclusion: The amount of time Tarquin's been adventuring isn't as relevant as you may think. [I'm taking some liberties here, but I think that's what he was getting at. Note, however, that Tarquin isn't a clear nemesis for any of the OOTS anyway.
    hakflem: Thesis: Agreed with some villains, but that doesn't make sense for all of them.
    Point 1. It wouldn't make sense for a recurring villain, like Redcloak, to have a significant jump in spell level from one comic to the next. [Note that this is going slightly off-tangent - Redcloak isn't a clear nemesis or foil for any of the OOTS either, and this "NPC nemesis auto-level" is a perfectly viable way to address a power jump in-comic (as was explicitly done with Crystal & Haley).]
    Conclusion: This wouldn't work for Tarquin.
    Kish: Thesis: I don't think your reasoning for Point 1 makes sense.
    Counterpoint/Question 1: Were you surprised when Nale jumped spell levels, from Expeditious Retreat to Suggestion? [The former is level 1, the latter is level 3 for Nale as a sorcerer.] [The expected answer is, of course, "No," which would then invalidate that point.]
    hakflem: Question 2: Why not assume he had access to level 3 spells to begin with, instead of assuming he didn't at first but power-jumped later? Note that this is another option to explain the "power-jump" genitally described - that there wasn't one at all.]
    Kish: Answer 2: From what you said in Point 1, you didn't allow that as an option.
    hakflem: Counterpoint 2: "How will a Suggestion spell help Nale flee Elan when he needs to run fast and/ or jump high to escape both OOTS and nearby monsters ?" [This is a bit of a non-sequiter, and I really don't know what the intent here was - I'm guessing something like "Different contexts justify different power levels"? But even then, it's still irrelevant to Question/Answer 2...]


    On the subject of Monks and Paladins:
    Spoiler
    Show
    Kish: "So I take it you're a member of the 'Miko was much higher level than the Order when she beat them up' club."
    hakflem: No. I believe the combination of "broken" Monk and "crazy-good" Paladin class features makes it unnecessary for Miko to have a level advantage to beat the Order.
    Kish: Why doesn't that also work for Tarquin?
    hakflem: Thesis: The different class features between Fighter and Monk/Paladin mean that a Fighter would need a level advantage to beat the Order, while a Monk/Paladin would not.
    Point 1. They have different class features.
    Point 2. The combination of Monk and Paladin class features is very strong.
    Point 3. The class features of a single-classed Fighter are not especially strong.
    Implied Point 4: If you have strong class features, you are a strong character.
    Implied Point 5: Tarquin is a single-classed Fighter. [See the class discussion above as to why this is not necessarily a valid assumption.]
    Conclusion: Tarquin needs to be significantly higher-level than the Order to beat them, while Miko did not.
    Water_Bear/rgrekejin: Thesis/Counterpoint 2 & 4: While the class features themselves may be strong, and the needed ability scores are shared, that doesn't always make a strong character.
    Point 6: To fully utilize a class feature, you must have a sufficient or superb corresponding ability score (Str/Dex/etc.).
    Point 7: The combination of Paladin and Monk class features which hakflem described require good-to-superb scores in every ability.
    Point 8: Most characters have some good, some bad, and some mediocre ability scores. Corollary: Very few characters have all good-to-superb ability scores.
    Point 9: Very few characters would be able to take full advantage of the combination of class features hakflem described.
    Conclusion: Counterpoint 2 & 4 - your conclusion is invalid, at least by that line of logic.


    On the subject of leveling in bursts vs consistently over time:
    Spoiler
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    I think this quote explains it well enough to end that argument:
    Quote Originally Posted by rgrekejin
    Ah, I see your point. We really don't disagree on anything fundamental here, we're just using terminology differently. When I say a "burst of activity", I'm referring to that person's adventuring career, in respect to their entire lifetime. But, while actually adventuring, the level gain occurs at a relatively constant rate, which is what you're arguing. I more or less agree with that statement. The question becomes, then, how long did Tarquin adventure before he retired? Did he actually adventure longer than the OotS? Did he retire young? I don't think there's really any way of knowing. All we can be sure of is that he's higher level than the OotS. You're convinced that he's much higher than them. I'm not so convinced, but I think there's reasonable room for disagreement on that point.
    (bolding mine)
    I omitted the quotes about that sub-argument from the above list & won't summarize the points involved, since it's basically one big misunderstanding which this quote resolves (I hope).


    On the overall subject of Tarquin being Epic or not:
    Spoiler
    Show

    hakflem: Thesis 1: It is safe to assume that Tarquin is Epic. [Alternatively, "It is more likely than not that Tarquin is Epic." - this has a lower assumed burden of proof, but is a distinctly different point to make. I'll proceed with the first, but keep the alternative in mind, too.]
    Point 1: Tarquin has been an adventurer for a long time, much longer than the Order.
    Point 2: Tarquin has been reasonably successful, despite significant opposition.
    Point 3: The Order has gained lots of levels during the course of the strip, and are currently around level 15.
    Implied Point 4: Tarquin has also gained a relatively similar amount of levels during the course of the strip.
    Conclusion 1: Tarquin is probably around level 30, and is thus Epic.
    Kish: Criticism of Point 1 & 2: These are not especially strong points.
    Conclusion 2: While Conclusion 1 may be valid, you need more evidence to support it.
    Sweet_Goddess: Point 4: If Tarquin were Epic, he would deal far more damage than he is shown as dealing.
    Point 5: Thog deals more damage than Tarquin with the same weapon against the same opponents, and Thog is not Epic.
    Conclusion 3: Tarquin is probably not Epic.
    hakflem: Point 6: Guessing the Order's levels from their number of attacks or spell levels is inaccurate. [This seems to be a non-sequiter - it never gets used to support any conclusions later on, at least from my view.]
    Point 7: To "handle" an entire PC party on your own requires a significant level advantage.
    Reiterate Point 3: OOTS is likely level 15+.
    Point 9: A defensive meatshield likely has the feats Combat Expertise & Defending Weapon. [Another point that is stated and never used - and what exactly is the Defending Weapon feat?]
    Point 10: Tarquin is probably an epic level fighter with lots of feats. [I'm sure this isn't how it's intended to go, but when I read this I thought "Point 10: I am using circular logic."]
    Reiterate Conclusion 1: Tarquin is probably Epic.
    Kish: Counterpoint 7: Tarquin's actions can be explained without resorting to Epic levels.
    Counterpoint 7 & 9 & 10: Tarquin can substitute various magic items for the feats required to accomplish defeating the Order.
    lio45: Counterpoint 1 & 2 & 4: NPCs can auto-level (see earlier subdiscussion)
    Snails: Point 11: It is better storywriting for Tarquin to not be Epic.
    Point 12: It is more impressive to the reader for Tarquin to not be Epic.
    Point 13: An Epic Tarquin strains reader suspension of disbelief, as that implies there are a number of relatively unknown Epic characters throughout the world that have not yet been seen.
    Reiterate Point 11
    Reiterate Conclusion 3: Tarquin is probably not Epic.
    Kish: Point 14: Miko defeated the Order without being significantly higher level than them.
    Point 15: Tarquin can do the same.
    Reiterate Conclusion 3: Tarquin is probably not Epic.
    hakflem: Counterpoint 14 & 15: Miko could do that due to a stronger class combination than Tarquin has. (see earlier subdiscussion)
    Water_Bear: Counter-Counterpoint 14 & 15: Miko likely does not actually have a stronger class combination than Tarquin.
    rgrekejin: Reiterate Counter-Counterpoint 14 & 15: Miko likely does not actually have a stronger class combination than Tarquin.


    And that is what I see in review of those subject in this thread. Thoughts?
    LGBTitP

    Quote Originally Posted by ti'esar View Post
    I just want to say that if this isn't the weirdest line of argument I've seen this thread take yet, it's not for lack of trying.

  30. - Top - End - #270
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    RedWizardGuy

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    Default Re: OOTS #863 - The Discussion Thread

    P.S: That took way too much time to compile and edit. >.>
    Last edited by Sorator; 2012-09-17 at 01:53 AM.
    LGBTitP

    Quote Originally Posted by ti'esar View Post
    I just want to say that if this isn't the weirdest line of argument I've seen this thread take yet, it's not for lack of trying.

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