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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Firechanter's Avatar

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    Default CRs by character class?

    First off, if this has been done already, I'll happily take a link. ^^

    We all know that not all classes are created equal, linear Fighters and quadratic Wizards etc. (Actually, in case of the Fighter I'd say the curve is logarithmic) Yet, by the rules a level 15 Fighter and a level 15 Wizard are both CR15.

    Is there a reasonable formula to fix this? If not, feel like developing one? ^^
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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    NecromancerGuy

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    Default Re: CRs by character class?

    There really isn't much point, as you can break CR in all sorts of ways. You can make a ridiculously over powered monster who is under CR, and vice versa.

    That said it works well enough there isn't a lot of reason to change it. Perhaps try decreasing the cr by half the tier.
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    Default Re: CRs by character class?

    To be honest, I think that mid/low-tier classes could be good "on-CR" encounters. They use up some party resources (spells, HP -> more spells, maybe some consumables) but aren't especially dangerous unless the party is running on empty or there are unusual circumstances.

    I'd just give well-made high-tier NPCs a higher CR, since they represent a greater chance of "wait, I died? He did, too? That's not good" than a fighter or rogue or ranger or similar.
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    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: CRs by character class?

    optimisation has to large an impact i think to make a percise cr system imposible.

    not to mention stuff like a bard is a lot more dangerous in a party then he is by himself.
    Last edited by awa; 2012-11-02 at 10:58 AM.

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    Chimera

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    Default Re: CRs by character class?

    As a general rule of thumb, I like to peg physical combat classes' cr as 2/3 of class lv. So a fighter12 would be cr8 (with gear appropriate for a cr8 npc). Dunno why, that number seems about right when compared to existing MM monsters (compare a hill giant with a fighter9, for instance).

    Spellcasters are tricky, because they have so little hp. Maybe use mid-hd monsters and non-associated class rules?
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    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: CRs by character class?

    im not certain i agree a hill giant is hyper focused on hitting stuff in melee so any physical charecter would have a hard time beating it in that particular area but even an unoptimised charecter could still take it because the hill giant has no items. A ranger with some gear like a tangle foot bag and a good ranged weapon could take one down easily.

    if that ranger was riding a mount it becomes even easier.

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    Chimera

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    Default Re: CRs by character class?

    Quote Originally Posted by awa View Post
    im not certain i agree a hill giant is hyper focused on hitting stuff in melee so any physical charecter would have a hard time beating it in that particular area but even an unoptimised charecter could still take it because the hill giant has no items. A ranger with some gear like a tangle foot bag and a good ranged weapon could take one down easily.

    if that ranger was riding a mount it becomes even easier.
    My point was comparing them as npcs.

    Take a human fighter9 (cr9). Stat-wise, it seems comparable at best to a hill giant (cr7). Here are some simple numbers.
    Fighter (assuming +1greatsword, +1fullplate, 13dex, melee weapon mastery feat (PHB2) and quaffs a potion of enlarge person prior to fight)
    Fighter9
    HP: 59 (9d10+18)
    AC: 20 (base10+9armour+1dex)
    Saves: +8/+4/+3
    Attack: +16/+11 (bab+9+3feat+1weapon+4str-1size)
    Damage: 3d6+11
    Run of the mill hill giant (wielding a large greatsword)
    Hill Giant
    HP: 102
    AC: 20
    Saves: +12/+3/+4
    Attack: +16/+11
    Damage: 3d6+10
    As you can see, they both have the same AC, attack values and damage, but the giant has more hp and better fort saves. Using this as a yardstick, a fighter9 shouldn't be more than cr6 at best. Though if you optimise a little (say build a barb1/fighter8 instead), the disparity is less (because of rage bonuses), so that may be closer to a cr7.

    This disparity only grows for melee at higher lvs, because gear becomes prohibitively more expensive, while monsters continue to enjoy superior stats as compensation for the fact they get no eq (or at least, no eq that benefits them directly in battle). There is no way a fighter20 is expected to provide the same challenge as a tarrasque or wyrm black dragon.
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    Default Re: CRs by character class?

    You could use a "base CR progression", like BAB/BSB: set up Tier 5 and 6 as ½ CR progression, T4/T3 as ¾ progression, and T2/T1 as full CR progression. Main problem is they might end up being almost universally CR'd slightly too low, so add +1 CR for all of them after third level or so.
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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: CRs by character class?

    If you rearrange CRs by Tiers, the Balance Point should probably hinge on T3 or T4, depending on the dominant tier of your party.
    So if you have mostly T3s in the party, then a T3 NPC would have CR=ECL, a T4 might be 0.8*ECL and T5 0.6*ECL, or something like that.

    Alternatively, you could take BAB and Caster Level /Spell Level into account. A rough shot might be CR = 1/2 BAB + 1/2CL + max Spell Level, but that would rate the Rogue worse than it actually is.

    Besides, lowlevel Wizards/Sorcs are fantastically easy prey; then at lower mid levels they are about on par with the rest, and it's probably around level 11 that they really take off. If you really want to take that into account, you need a formula with a quadratic term, but that quickly gets annoying to calculate, probably not worth the effort.
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    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: CRs by character class?

    Yes if an unoptimized fighter trys to take a hill giant head on in a physical fight it will probably lose but good item choices or a more optimized build like riding a horse and using a lance means the hill giant wont stand a chance.

    even just using fighters and no superior physical characters like a war blade optimization can massively alter the nature of the fight.

    heck by level 6 a ranger could be flying around shooting arrows from a dire bat much more dangerous then a hill giant (using that feat to boost animal companion).

    a hill giant is a massive one trick pony classed character with his wealth by level has a lot more options makes them much harder to render completely useless

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    Chimera

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    Default Re: CRs by character class?

    The thing is, you are supposed to compare an npc build to the next best alternative (and adjust his cr accordingly from there), not necessarily to a Hill Giant. However hard you try to optimise them, chances are, there is a specialized monster somewhere which simply does the job better.

    So if you have built a charger, I would compare its effectiveness using a centaur as a yardstick (which, according to races of faerun, may take spirited charge without needing to meet the prereqs). In the same vein, the centaur has superior physical stats and the added advantage of being its own mount (one less variable that can be disrupted). At 3rd lv, a centaur wielding a large lance can charge for 6d6+18 damage, easily one-shorting any PC.

    A ranger6 with a flying mount? A quick flip of the MM turns up the manticore, or even a harpy or gargoyle wielding a ranged or reach weapon.

    So if you want to use cr as a gauge of how challenging an npc would be, it will almost never be an accurate gauge save for a few narrow 'sweet spots'.
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    Daemon

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    Default Re: CRs by character class?

    Quote Originally Posted by Firechanter View Post
    First off, if this has been done already, I'll happily take a link. ^^

    We all know that not all classes are created equal, linear Fighters and quadratic Wizards etc. (Actually, in case of the Fighter I'd say the curve is logarithmic) Yet, by the rules a level 15 Fighter and a level 15 Wizard are both CR15.
    Well, according to the CR system, all classes are supposed to be exponential, scaling at a rate of SQRT(2). So if we go by that, even Quadratic Wizards gain power too slowly.

    Yes, this might be semantics, but it kinda matters if we are trying to make a mathematical formula here.
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    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: CRs by character class?

    a monster with a nonstandard build is no longer the monster in the monster manual.

    a manticore is extremely vulnerable to tangle foot bags. with its clumsy maneuverability one struck with a tangle foot bag most double move in a straight line every round or fall out of the sky not to mention turning becomes a huge deal someone ridding a more maneuverable bat with the longer range bow will eat them alive.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: CRs by character class?

    I have to interject here, since I see no way in the world a ranger of less then 7th level would beat a hill giant, mount or not. Did everyone forget that giants throw rocks? Really really far? For that very reason a hill giant is arguably more dangerous to ranged characters, since ranged types typically have less armor and less hit points. Also, unless the fight is taking place on a featureless plane, I think the giant would be smart (or cunning) enough to seek cover after it became apparent it was going to be a ranged battle.

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    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: CRs by character class?

    they do throw rocks but in the case of the hill giant they have only half the accuracy of a club blow

    in addition there is a low cost item that grants +5 ac vrs ranged attacks which if you are a flying ranger its almost a must.

    hill giants only have a +8 to hit with thrown rocks can only throw 1 a round (no quick draw) and have a fairly small number of rocks.

    by using a tangle foot bag or the entangle spell you drop that to +4 to hit

    which against a ranger with decent stats and full wealth by level is pretty bad

    edit also my argument is a level 7 ranger can beat a hill giant in opposition to the early argument that it was balanced against a level 9 martial character.
    Last edited by awa; 2012-11-04 at 03:44 PM.

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    Troll in the Playground
     
    Chimera

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    Default Re: CRs by character class?

    Quote Originally Posted by limejuicepowder View Post
    I have to interject here, since I see no way in the world a ranger of less then 7th level would beat a hill giant, mount or not. Did everyone forget that giants throw rocks? Really really far? For that very reason a hill giant is arguably more dangerous to ranged characters, since ranged types typically have less armor and less hit points. Also, unless the fight is taking place on a featureless plane, I think the giant would be smart (or cunning) enough to seek cover after it became apparent it was going to be a ranged battle.
    It's not supposed to. I stress again that I am comparing how challenging an npc is against a standard 4-member party, not how well it would fare against another monster.

    Anyways, it's not that hard to optimise a hill giant for throwing. Feats are mutable, so I see no reason why you can't swap them out to better challenge your party. There is this feat somewhere which lets you use your str for ranged throwing attacks instead of dex. That's an instant +8 attack right off the bat.

    But I digress. Anyways, my response to the OP is still this: Build your character, then base its cr off the closest monster equivalent.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tvtyrant View Post
    I can never understand WOTC's reasoning; taking RAW as a whole is like grabbing a book filled with fortune cookie sayings and basing your life off of them.
    My humble efforts at re-cr'ing MM2
    http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=215727

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