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  1. - Top - End - #31
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    Quote Originally Posted by Morithias View Post
    -4 to spot and -4 to listen in my campaigns are suicide for one simply reason.

    Meet the shadowrunners. A group of DARK Changeling Assassins, many who have deathstalker levels instead of assassin levels.

    +8 to hide, +6 move silent, +10 disguise.
    The thing about this is that anybody who would take that Flaw was already planning on failing those checks- they likely are a class that doesn't have Spot/Listen as in-class skills (and doesn't have enough skill points to even think about cross-classing!) and has at best a slightly above-average Wisdom. Any character with an actual investment in stealth skills could sneak circles around them *before* the Flaw; taking the Flaw just gives them a benefit for something they had already given up as not important to their build. You aren't actually taking advantage of any new weakness by sending stealth assassins at them.

  2. - Top - End - #32
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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    Quote Originally Posted by Morithias View Post
    Edit: my point basically being that many of the flaws are DM dependant. I'm seriously considering cutting flaws all together and just giving everyone bonus feats for free.
    That's what I went for. Flaws are dumb in so many ways, and people tend to just take flaws that simply aren't relevant to their characters. Also, as a DM I can't be arsed to constantly keep the PCs' flaws in mind, and players themselves tend to "forget" about them. Also, flaws make characters awfully frontloaded.

    So long story short, we simply use an improved feat progression where everyone gets a character feat on every odd level rather than on every third level. So, like Pathfinder, but without castrating individual feats. [Also, feats that normally become available at levels 6 etc. get their requirement reduced by 1.]
    That's a total of 3 extra Feats over 20 levels, no frontloading and no cheesy non-issue flaw numbercrunching.
    So you know, university Physics D&D 3.5 Optimization is essentially three seven years of this discussion among like-minded enthusiasts. Done with supercomputers, access to the textsplatbook collections of five continents and thirty languages with thousands of classes, prestige classes, feats and spells.
    On four hours sleep a night.
    With no sex.
    You're not going to find the loophole these guys missed.

  3. - Top - End - #33
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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    Quote Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post
    I'm not so kind a DM. If you fail your Spot check (with appropriate circumstance modifiers) and still can't make out the guy who's hitting you in melee combat, then tough cookies. You can attack squares blindly, just as anyone else following the rules is required to do.

    Flaws aren't just free feats.
    The guy who's hitting you in melee combat is taking -20 for attacking, plus ACP, even if you insist that you need a Spot check to see something that not only isn't hiding, but isn't trying to. Getting above a -20 on a check is not a concern for even a character with 1 Wisdom and that flaw.
    Quote Originally Posted by JaronK View Post
    Frankly, a Wizard can suck even more than a Fighter could ever dream of sucking. A Fighter can stab himself to death, but only a Wizard could Plane Shift to some horrible far realm to be tortured for an eternity of insanity.


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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    As someone mentioned earlier, I really dig the Dragon Mag flaws for a few more flavorful options. On my Unseelie Fey Silverbrow Human Bard, I took Metal Intolerance, taking an additional 1 point of damage from metal weapons (stacking with the extra 1d6 I already take), and Arcane Performer, requiring a DC 10+Spell Level perform check whenever I cast, or I lose the spell. Fits with both the flair, and the lineage.

    But yeah, Fussy is always good. Bestial Instinct (penalties to attacking with non-natural weapons) if you're a Totemist or Monkalike, Loudmouth (penalties to Diplomacy and Move Silently) if you're not the party face or ninja, etc. etc.
    Last edited by Terazul; 2012-10-15 at 09:50 PM.
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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    I might be the minority here, but I like taking flaws based on character concept...sometimes leaving me book-diving for a cool feat to take afterwards.


    Here in the Playground I've got (as examples):

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    An Orc Crusader so devoted to Gruumsh that he put out an eye (Murky Eye'd flaw, which bought him the Willing Deformity [Eyes] feat)

    A pseudodragon who's master was duped by a demon because of his gullability (Weak Willed flaw)

    A Water-orc Dragonborn who's basically a big dumb moose brimming full of faith who relies on his deity to preserve him (Poor Reflexes, Vulnerable)

    An AoO machine who's fighting style is to pull the Kenpachi Zaraki Anime Badass and leave intentional openings for someone stab him so he can grab their sword and bash their face in (Vulnerable)

    Just in case, in any game I've applied to without being selected: DMs are more than welcome to use my submission as an NPC as they wish!

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    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    No one mentioned exiled from Dragonmarked. Only penalty is that you can't use any services from that dragonmarked house. Might be a pain for role playing but it has no mechanical draw backs. Easily the best flaw in the game.
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    AssassinGuy

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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    Quote Originally Posted by Flickerdart View Post
    The guy who's hitting you in melee combat is taking -20 for attacking, plus ACP, even if you insist that you need a Spot check to see something that not only isn't hiding, but isn't trying to.
    The rules specify the necessary Spot check DC for things that are in plain sight; see page 64 of Player's Handbook. Just because it's a very easy check doesn't absolve you from the requirement of passing it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Flickerdart
    Getting above a -20 on a check is not a concern for even a character with 1 Wisdom and that flaw.
    The DC is not the problem. The problem is that if you fail the first time (likely before the combat modifiers come into play), it's going to cost you an action to try again.
    Action: Varies. Every time you have a chance to spot something in a reactive manner you can make a Spot check without using an action. Trying to spot something you failed to see previously is a move action.

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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    Quote Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post
    The rules specify the necessary Spot check DC for things that are in plain sight; see page 64 of Player's Handbook. Just because it's a very easy check doesn't absolve you from the requirement of passing it.
    Table 43: Difficulty Class Examples
    Difficulty (DC) Example (Skill Used)
    Very easy (0) Notice something large in plain sight (Spot)

    That's for something which is doing nothing, just being in plain sight. If it were to take actions which impose a penalty to its Hide check, then the DC would be lower than the above for obvious reasons.

    Furthermore, those are just examples of the types of checks which are made at those DCs, not every check of that type is that exact same DC, otherwise every approaching guard in the game would be a DC 10 Listen check, even if that guard was attempting to move silently. Those are examples of actions which are representative of varying difficulties of checks, it is not a RAW DC for the given type of action regardless of other circumstances.


    The action scaling from reactive to a move action is likewise not all-encompassing. If the hiding opponent makes another hide check, or if his hide check result changes due to a penalty based on his actions, then there should be another reactive check.

    "Every time you have a chance to spot something in a reactive manner you can make a Spot check without using an action."

    I'd say that every time a hidden foe makes an attack, that's a chance to spot them and anyone within line of sight is entitled to a reactive check. Even if that's not the case, if the DC is penalized below someone's original spot check then they should see the opponent regardless.

  9. - Top - End - #39
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    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    At the level of optomisation that I normally play at (fairly low) Unreactive isn't an awful flaw.

    I'm sure that several playgrounders will jump in to tell you that initiative is king and must be maximised But... If whoever goes first is going to win then you are playing rocket tag, at lower levels of opimisation the battle isn't won or lost on the first initiative pass so not going first can even be an advantage. (E.g. Non pounce non ubercharger melee: going second might mean that the enemy charged you, allowing you to deliver a full attack against their single attack on you). Most of my actual game builds have unreactive and still occasionally win initiative.
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  10. - Top - End - #40
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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    Back in the days, the saying was "Going first is good, going last is better".
    I guess that may still apply for certain (low) levels of optimization.
    So you know, university Physics D&D 3.5 Optimization is essentially three seven years of this discussion among like-minded enthusiasts. Done with supercomputers, access to the textsplatbook collections of five continents and thirty languages with thousands of classes, prestige classes, feats and spells.
    On four hours sleep a night.
    With no sex.
    You're not going to find the loophole these guys missed.

  11. - Top - End - #41
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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    Quote Originally Posted by Firechanter View Post
    Back in the days, the saying was "Going first is good, going last is better".
    I guess that may still apply for certain (low) levels of optimization.
    The reason you go last is because everyone else is dead and there's nobody else to go after you. It's like the saying, "It's always in the last place you look." Well duh. That's because you won't keep looking if you've already found it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Firechanter View Post
    That's what I went for. Flaws are dumb in so many ways, and people tend to just take flaws that simply aren't relevant to their characters. Also, as a DM I can't be arsed to constantly keep the PCs' flaws in mind, and players themselves tend to "forget" about them. Also, flaws make characters awfully frontloaded.
    What self-respecting swordsman would be bad at swinging a sword? What halfway decent marksman would be bad at firing a bow? If you're going to spend your life perfecting a skill (or set of skills), it's only logical that you not completely suck at it to begin with.
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  12. - Top - End - #42
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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    Quote Originally Posted by Rubik View Post
    If you're going to spend your life perfecting a skill (or set of skills), it's only logical that you not completely suck at it to begin with.
    Sure. It's sensible to pick flaws that don't really affect you -- but that also means that all you are doing is frontloading a couple of free feats. Which is why I got rid of the flaws altogether and just hand out free feats a bit later.
    So you know, university Physics D&D 3.5 Optimization is essentially three seven years of this discussion among like-minded enthusiasts. Done with supercomputers, access to the textsplatbook collections of five continents and thirty languages with thousands of classes, prestige classes, feats and spells.
    On four hours sleep a night.
    With no sex.
    You're not going to find the loophole these guys missed.

  13. - Top - End - #43
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    MonkGuy

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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    Quote Originally Posted by Firechanter View Post
    Sure. It's sensible to pick flaws that don't really affect you -- but that also means that all you are doing is frontloading a couple of free feats. Which is why I got rid of the flaws altogether and just hand out free feats a bit later.
    I sorta like this idea, but sometimes flaws can help build personality. I just created a mystic thruge last night, hes got Bravado and Noncombative. That makes him self confident, and distaining of anyone who resorts to Physical combat due to his dual mastery of magic.

  14. - Top - End - #44
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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    Quote Originally Posted by Morithias View Post
    If you take [Inattentive] in my setting, NEVER piss off a noble or crime lord or your throat WILL be slit in the night. Their top member is level 20+. With deathstalker and legacy champion levels, AND she has unseelie fey's winter chill ability. Basically her DC is 10 + 2*class level + charisma*2.

    Hell even being a wizard won't save you.
    But that relative +4 to Spot and Listen will?

    Assuming that your assassins have chosen to focus on raising Dex and Cha and are maxing out their Hide, Move Silently, and Disguise class skills, then only PCs who are raising Wis and are maxing out their Spot and Listen class skills are going to be able to keep up with them in a straight skill roll battle.

    If you're playing a character whose class features and party roles rely on stats other than Wisdom and whose classes don't have Spot and Listen on their lists, your perception modifiers are going to fall behind their stealth modifiers very, very quickly with or without the flaw.

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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    Quote Originally Posted by Firechanter View Post
    Sure. It's sensible to pick flaws that don't really affect you -- but that also means that all you are doing is frontloading a couple of free feats. Which is why I got rid of the flaws altogether and just hand out free feats a bit later.
    That is not an unreasonable statement or reaction.
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    -Unskilled writers use "said" and "asked."
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    -Masterful writers avoid using any of them.

  16. - Top - End - #46
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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    Quote Originally Posted by Morithias View Post
    Hell even being a wizard won't save you.
    Really? You don't say..
    Quote Originally Posted by Emperor Tippy View Post
    By level 20 though, you aren't capturing a wizard. A character lives to level 20 by being the most ruthless, lucky, capable, and paranoid bastard around. A wizard is throwing around a 30+ Int score and has, entirely in character, planned contingencies for his contingencies. He may well be running around with flat out total immunity to harm, he does not walk outside without an entire bevy of defensive magics around him and enough magic items to buy himself a nation.

  17. - Top - End - #47
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    DwarfBarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    Luposlipaphobia

    That is all.
    I am not crazy! I prefer "reality impaired".

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    AssassinGuy

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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    Quote Originally Posted by Biffoniacus_Furiou View Post
    I'd say that every time a hidden foe makes an attack, that's a chance to spot them and anyone within line of sight is entitled to a reactive check. Even if that's not the case, if the DC is penalized below someone's original spot check then they should see the opponent regardless.
    There's room for DM judgment here.
    Trying to spot something you failed to see previously is a move action.
    Possibilities for this "something" span a range:
    • the same creature or object
    • the same creature or object in the same location
    • the same creature or object in the same location taking the same action
    • the same creature or object in the same location taking the same action in the same way
    A DM who wants to give Hide more power will favor the top of the list; the DM who wants to give Spot more power will favor the bottom of the list. But someone standing in the same place and attacking with the same weapon is always going to require a move action Spot recheck to detect if their opponent fails the first (reactive) Spot check to see them. You never spot someone "regardless" in D&D 3.5; only forest fires and avalanches have rules stipulating that they're automatically Spotted.

  19. - Top - End - #49
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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    Quote Originally Posted by Slipperychicken View Post
    Contingency - Keeper of the Fang knife. Raise dead doesn't work when the knife that killed you prevents resurrection.
    Alarm - Dispell magic?
    Rope Trick - See invisible + Dispell magic, plus you can't hide forever, eventually you're going to have to come out, and most of them are changlings. Many of them can kill you in daylight too.
    Mansion - Once you can cast that, they're basically going to be hunting you down in daylight. So unless you give up all human contact besides the other PCs....

    My point was they were immune to divination. There's no "Scry on whoever is hunting use to find and kill them."

    Once you're dead, you're dead, and those knives will KEEP you dead.

    lol Still doesn't best the time I unnamed a guy though. "Truespeak is useless" indeed. Let's see how you like NOT EXISTING.

  20. - Top - End - #50
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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    • Feeble almost never has a drawback for anybody except skillmonkeys, even physical characters. I suppose it might count as a -2 initiative.
    • Noncombatant has no effect on any non-melee.
    • If you're a focused melee you might take shaky. It usually doesn't have a drawback but sometimes you need to use a backup weapon.
    • Many dragon magazine flaws mentioned in this thread likewise have a trivial or easily overcome drawback.
    • Murky-eyed on any caster that doesn't use attack rolls. Sure those spells are alright but there's never a need to select them. He can even select a couple of the better gems and simply not use them on foes with concealment; he has other spells.
    • Pathetic is pretty easy to take on a dump stat.


    Sure the others might sometimes be tolerable but why bother when there are options with almost no drawback? The obvious min-max fuel is why I don't like flaws. Abilities should be balanced based on the best reasonable use of them not the worst use of them. To have flaws that have no effect on certain characters is bad design. Even to have a flaw that has minimal effect on certain builds means you must make the penalty large enough that even on those builds the drawback is worth a feat.

    Or I also like the suggestion to give the extra feats for free. It gets around the needless complication of taking meaningless flaws to get what are basically free feats anyway.
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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    Quote Originally Posted by Morithias View Post
    Contingency - Keeper of the Fang knife. Raise dead doesn't work when the knife that killed you prevents resurrection.
    Alarm - Dispell magic?
    Rope Trick - See invisible + Dispell magic, plus you can't hide forever, eventually you're going to have to come out, and most of them are changlings. Many of them can kill you in daylight too.
    Mansion - Once you can cast that, they're basically going to be hunting you down in daylight. So unless you give up all human contact besides the other PCs....

    My point was they were immune to divination. There's no "Scry on whoever is hunting use to find and kill them."

    Once you're dead, you're dead, and those knives will KEEP you dead.

    lol Still doesn't best the time I unnamed a guy though. "Truespeak is useless" indeed. Let's see how you like NOT EXISTING.
    Congratulations, you've just killed the wizard's Astral Projection. Now you have a moderately inconvenienced and somewhat pissed off wizard coming after you. Really, if you want to play the paranoia game to it's fullest (which many casters don't since they still want to have an actual game), you're simply not touching a wizard as a non caster. At most you'll be bumping into his minions, Astral Projections, Simulacrums and Ice Assassins.

    Regarding flaws, I think the whole design premise behind them is flawed (pun intended). The designers seemed to have thought that people will be building well-rounded characters, so a penalty would hurt at some point. Problem is d&d rewards specialization to such a degree that past the early levels, if you don't invest the resources to be really good at something you might as well stop trying altogether. The pace at which you advance abilities as you level means that soon an expert in a field would be completely off the RNG compared to a dabbler. At that point, the difference between slightly trying and not trying at all is exactly 0.
    Last edited by LordBlades; 2012-10-17 at 01:36 AM.

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    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Default Re: The "Best" Flaws

    Quote Originally Posted by Morithias View Post
    Contingency - Keeper of the Fang knife. Raise dead doesn't work when the knife that killed you prevents resurrection.
    Alarm - Dispell magic?
    Rope Trick - See invisible + Dispell magic, plus you can't hide forever, eventually you're going to have to come out, and most of them are changlings. Many of them can kill you in daylight too.
    Mansion - Once you can cast that, they're basically going to be hunting you down in daylight. So unless you give up all human contact besides the other PCs....

    My point was they were immune to divination. There's no "Scry on whoever is hunting use to find and kill them."

    Once you're dead, you're dead, and those knives will KEEP you dead.

    lol Still doesn't best the time I unnamed a guy though. "Truespeak is useless" indeed. Let's see how you like NOT EXISTING.
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