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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by Answerer View Post
    Then what are you posting in this thread for?

    Your every post has been asserting the negative qualities of the tier system. You seem determined to convince everyone that it is bad, wrong, and ruins the game. Else why are you even here? Why did you even click on the link?

    There are many threads here I don't care for in the slightest. That I think are a bad idea to even attempt to do. I don't go into them and tell the people who are attempting them that they're wrong for even trying.

    And yet that is what you have done. You have gone into the thread for a project you are already familiar with and already know you do not like. You have entered this thread, and posted assertion after assertion of the negative effects of the project.

    What purpose did you have?
    Well he has been highlighting the biggest problem with the Tiers with every single post. The people who use it without fully understanding it.
    It's quite possible that if JaronK put a notice at the top of the post, less people would come here and just, make assumptions. That would be beneficial and could earn the Tiers a better reputation.
    Although it is just as likely that the people in question will continue to ignore any supplemental information.
    Last edited by Threadnaught; 2013-01-24 at 08:45 PM.

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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by Threadnaught View Post
    Well he has been highlighting the biggest problem with the Tiers with every single post. The people who use it without fully understanding it.
    It's quite possible that if JaronK put a notice at the top of the post, less people would come here and just, make assumptions. That would be beneficial and could earn the Tiers a better reputation.
    Although it is just as likely that the people in question will continue to ignore any supplemental information.
    I keep trying, but that never seems to work. I've even got a summary of the ideas and the point at the top. Do you have any suggestions for what such a thing might say?

    JaronK

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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by Threadnaught View Post
    Well he has been highlighting the biggest problem with the Tiers with every single post. The people who use it without fully understanding it.
    It's quite possible that if JaronK put a notice at the top of the post, less people would come here and just, make assumptions. That would be beneficial and could earn the Tiers a better reputation.
    Although it is just as likely that the people in question will continue to ignore any supplemental information.
    That is not, and cannot be called, a flaw of the tier system.

    That is a flaw of the readers, or more accurately, those-who-talk-about-it-without-reading-and-understanding-it.

    And there are notices all over the thing. It is the responsibility of the reader, not the author, for everything to actually get read.


    Basically, his entire argument is that it's somehow JaronK's fault that people are stupid. That's not just absurd, were I JaronK I'd find it quite insulting, the claim that I somehow have guilt for this fact.
    Last edited by Answerer; 2013-01-24 at 09:13 PM.

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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    I interpreted his point to be that while the tier system itself is fine, it causes lots of trouble when people who don't understand it try to "use" it.This makes the tier system more trouble than it's worth.

    Am I interpreting your point correctly Togo?
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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by JaronK View Post
    I keep trying, but that never seems to work. I've even got a summary of the ideas and the point at the top. Do you have any suggestions for what such a thing might say?

    JaronK
    I honestly don't think that you could get much more obvious and direct in your explanation of what the tier system is. The problem, as I gather, isn't really with the material presented, the problem is that people don't read the posts fully, don't understand what they're reading, and then misapply what they've "learned." No amount of formatting, editing, or warnings will stop people from doing those things, so I'm not really sure what more you can do. Maybe you need to put the warnings in size 72, bold font at the top?

    You could, and I'm not sure it would help at all, strictly separate the purely descriptive parts (looking at the version in this thread, this would include most of the content from "Psionic classes are merely absent..." to the end of the first post, excluding sections like "it's a bad idea to have parties with more than two tiers of difference," and also including a few of the FAQ questions that explain why the tier system doesn't accurately reflect all games and what its assumptions are) from the parts that recommend how the tier system should be used (the first part of the first post and most of the FAQ). This would address some of the complaints that people (like WhatBigTeeth in this thread) have about the perceived bias in the post, especially since the descriptive portions of the tier system are pretty hard to argue against, but it wouldn't stop people from misusing the information, and in fact might contribute to more misunderstandings if recommendations on how the tier system should be used are divorced from the explanation itself.
    Last edited by Karnith; 2013-01-24 at 09:27 PM.

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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    You also might want to remove the comment about psionic classes being absent, since last I checked, they're totally on the list.
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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by Answerer View Post
    Basically, his entire argument is that it's somehow JaronK's fault that people are stupid. That's not just absurd, were I JaronK I'd find it quite insulting, the claim that I somehow have guilt for this fact.
    Peace, man, he never blamed the system itself, he just said that he dislikes how people misuse the system, and hence prefer not using nor pointing anyone to it. I won't say I agree with him, the tier system has done more good than harm in my groups, but it's certainly a reasonable and respectful stance.
    Quote Originally Posted by cerin616 View Post
    I just like to think that Smaug's "cry of pain" was "OH GOD, MY PRETTY! YOU HIT MY RIGHT IN THE PRETTY."
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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by shadow_archmagi View Post
    You also might want to remove the comment about psionic classes being absent, since last I checked, they're totally on the list.
    He might be referring to the lack of Ardent, Divine Mind, Lurk, Psychic Rogue, and Wilder


    Also, I think my last question got missed in the swarm of "blah I hate tiers", but I appreciate the fact that Jaron doesn't want to assign a tier to classes he's not familiar with, but I'm also unfamiliar with the Incarnum classes, is there a community accepted tier placement for them?

    *Edit* that is to say, I'd assume there's probably been a few threads about their placement in the past, and am curious to if there was placement for them that wasn't too disputed.
    Last edited by MeiLeTeng; 2013-01-24 at 09:44 PM.

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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by Larkas View Post
    Peace, man, he never blamed the system itself, he just said that he dislikes how people misuse the system, and hence prefer not using nor pointing anyone to it. I won't say I agree with him, the tier system has done more good than harm in my groups, but it's certainly a reasonable and respectful stance.
    I disagree; I think it is neither.

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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by MeiLeTeng View Post
    He might be referring to the lack of Ardent, Divine Mind, Lurk, Psychic Rogue, and Wilder


    Also, I think my last question got missed in the swarm of "blah I hate tiers", but I appreciate the fact that Jaron doesn't want to assign a tier to classes he's not familiar with, but I'm also unfamiliar with the Incarnum classes, is there a community accepted tier placement for them?

    *Edit* that is to say, I'd assume there's probably been a few threads about their placement in the past, and am curious to if there was placement for them that wasn't too disputed.
    I seem to recall that they were spread from 3 to 5 or so, with Totemist being the best and Soulborn being the worst.
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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by MeiLeTeng View Post
    Also, I think my last question got missed in the swarm of "blah I hate tiers", but I appreciate the fact that Jaron doesn't want to assign a tier to classes he's not familiar with, but I'm also unfamiliar with the Incarnum classes, is there a community accepted tier placement for them?

    *Edit* that is to say, I'd assume there's probably been a few threads about their placement in the past, and am curious to if there was placement for them that wasn't too disputed.
    I have not played the incarnum classes myself, but from what I've read/heard/reasoned out, totemists and incarnates are tier 3, with totemist getting the nod as the stronger class, and soulborn is tier 5 (a low tier 5, I might add).

    Good Lord soulborns are awful.
    Last edited by Karnith; 2013-01-24 at 09:59 PM.

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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by elvengunner69 View Post
    (I understand you were also making an example of how someone can optimize a fighter).
    Not really. Maybe I should claim a victory here for getting 2 people to say that a fighter with Weapon Focus, Weapon Specialization, and Greater Weapon Focus is optimized
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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Hmmmm... Say, JaronK, would you consider, in a hypothetical next reposting of the system, adding a third post saying the commonly accepted tier of the classes you decided not to test yourself, with proper disclaimers of course? It might be useful. Then again, I'd totally understand if you'd rather not, not being your work and such.

    Quote Originally Posted by Answerer View Post
    I disagree; I think it is neither.
    Oh well. Still, it's better not to dwell on it, right? Live and let live, as they say.
    Last edited by Larkas; 2013-01-24 at 09:53 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by cerin616 View Post
    I just like to think that Smaug's "cry of pain" was "OH GOD, MY PRETTY! YOU HIT MY RIGHT IN THE PRETTY."
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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by rockdeworld View Post
    Not really. Maybe I should claim a victory here for getting 2 people to say that a fighter with Weapon Focus, Weapon Specialization, and Greater Weapon Focus is optimized
    And...

    Improved Bull Rush, Shock Trooper, Leap Attack

    even then w/o the gauntlets of Ogre Power I am not sure how your math works out so completely but I've never used Shock Trooper so maybe that's the key. I know little about the feat.

    By my reckoning it would still be less than the Druid -- but it's all good. In our group the fighter did not take those feats I can say 100% as he does more in the 10-20 range of damage (with a +2 Great Axe)

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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by elvengunner69 View Post
    but I've never used Shock Trooper so maybe that's the key. I know little about the feat.
    Let me put it this way...

    Spoiler
    Show

    Well, let's see what a level 6 Human Spirit Lion Totem, Whirling Frenzy Barbarian with Power Attack does on a charge...

    Human, Spirit Lion Totem, Whirling Frenzy Barbarian 6

    Feats:
    1. Power Attack
    Hu: Battle Jump
    3: Improved Bull Rush
    6: Shock Trooper

    Items of note: A +1 Baatorian Greensteel Gloryborn Valorous Greatsword (a +2-equivalent weapon with some mundane benefits).

    A +2 Enhancement item of strength.

    Assumptions: He starts with an 18 strength and he puts his level 4 bonus to strength, and he maxxes Jump.

    Here is his attack routine on a Whirling Frenzy-enabled Heedless Charge, jumping at the enemy to enable Battle Jump, with full power attack, at level 6:

    Attack 1:
    25 str (+7)
    -2 to hit from whirling frenzy
    +6 bab to hit
    +1 enhancement to hit
    +2 charge

    Damage: 2d6
    +1 enhancement
    +10 strength (7 +3)
    +1 Gloryborn
    +12 Power Attack
    +1 from Greensteel

    Multiplier x3 = Battle Jump (x2) + Valorous (x2)

    (So a 2d6 changes into 6d6 after the x3 multiplier)

    Damage on first attack is 6d6+75

    So +14/6d6+75
    or an average of 96 damage.

    Attack 2:
    25 str (+7)
    -2 to hit from whirling frenzy
    +6 bab to hit
    +1 enhancement to hit
    +2 charge

    This is the same as the first attack, so +14/6d6+75
    again, an average of 96 damage.

    Attack 3:
    25 str (+7)
    -2 to hit from whirling frenzy
    +1 bab to hit
    +1 enhancement to hit
    +2 Charge

    +9 to hit

    Damage:
    2d6
    +1 enhancement
    +10 strength (7+3)
    +1 Gloryborn
    +12 power attack
    +1 from Greensteel

    So this is +9/6d6+75
    again, an average of 96 damage.

    So 288 damage at level 6. That's considered 'quite good' damage...

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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by JaronK View Post
    Only if I play them or see them in action. I'm fine with other people adding in their opinions of course, but I don't want to misplace anything.
    This feels odd. Shouldn't anecdotal experience seeing the class at your table be largely irrelevant?

    I understand your sentiment of the tier list being "complete enough" that most people that understand it should be capable of placing new classes, "Casts cleric spells in a Sorceror like fashion" would be sufficient for me to say "tier 2" and it would take something radical and unexpected like the ability to pull any spell off the cleric list a few times a day or some strange mechanic that makes casting nigh impossible in practice to move its tier.

    I also understand if its largely a lack of motivation and share your sentiments on Incarnum.

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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by Gavinfoxx View Post
    Let me put it this way...

    Spoiler
    Show

    Well, let's see what a level 6 Human Spirit Lion Totem, Whirling Frenzy Barbarian with Power Attack does on a charge...

    Human, Spirit Lion Totem, Whirling Frenzy Barbarian 6

    Feats:
    1. Power Attack
    Hu: Battle Jump
    3: Improved Bull Rush
    6: Shock Trooper

    Items of note: A +1 Baatorian Greensteel Gloryborn Valorous Greatsword (a +2-equivalent weapon with some mundane benefits).

    A +2 Enhancement item of strength.

    Assumptions: He starts with an 18 strength and he puts his level 4 bonus to strength, and he maxxes Jump.

    Here is his attack routine on a Whirling Frenzy-enabled Heedless Charge, jumping at the enemy to enable Battle Jump, with full power attack, at level 6:

    Attack 1:
    25 str (+7)
    -2 to hit from whirling frenzy
    +6 bab to hit
    +1 enhancement to hit
    +2 charge

    Damage: 2d6
    +1 enhancement
    +10 strength (7 +3)
    +1 Gloryborn
    +12 Power Attack
    +1 from Greensteel

    Multiplier x3 = Battle Jump (x2) + Valorous (x2)

    (So a 2d6 changes into 6d6 after the x3 multiplier)

    Damage on first attack is 6d6+75

    So +14/6d6+75
    or an average of 96 damage.

    Attack 2:
    25 str (+7)
    -2 to hit from whirling frenzy
    +6 bab to hit
    +1 enhancement to hit
    +2 charge

    This is the same as the first attack, so +14/6d6+75
    again, an average of 96 damage.

    Attack 3:
    25 str (+7)
    -2 to hit from whirling frenzy
    +1 bab to hit
    +1 enhancement to hit
    +2 Charge

    +9 to hit

    Damage:
    2d6
    +1 enhancement
    +10 strength (7+3)
    +1 Gloryborn
    +12 power attack
    +1 from Greensteel

    So this is +9/6d6+75
    again, an average of 96 damage.

    So 288 damage at level 6. That's considered 'quite good' damage...
    I'm not getting how he goes from 18 to 25 str? Is it Frenzied Barbarian? If so you are moving so far away from fighter I'm not sure your point other than to show how great shock trooper is IF you choose these very specific classes?

    And if he played a Barbarian he'd be waaaaaaaaaaaaaay more useful in my opinion. Straight fighter vs straight Druid -- Druid wins with my Dire Lion. And at lvl 8 (9 now technically) I can also summon in a horde of animals plus my black bear animal companion who is my lvl -3 who gets the benefit of our shared spell link so I wasn't even counting the 3d6 + str mod for His 2 claw attacks & his bite 1d8 or something (Black Bear) -- plus I could make him twice as big -- making me twice as big and giving us an even more absurd strength bonus.

    So minmax all you want -- I still like how the Druid stacks up :) Go Team Tear One!!
    Last edited by elvengunner69; 2013-01-24 at 11:51 PM.

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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by Karnith View Post
    I have not played the incarnum classes myself, but from what I've read/heard/reasoned out, totemists and incarnates are tier 3, with totemist getting the nod as the stronger class, and soulborn is tier 5 (a low tier 5, I might add).

    Good Lord soulborns are awful.
    Your last point is spot-on. Even Sinfire Titan found the class subpar, and he loves Incarnum enough to have wrote four entire handbooks on it! As for the Incarnate and Totemist, I'd wager they are a lot like Sorcerers: Capable of being potent, but the ceiling is quite far from the floor. You can do some impressive (Tier 3) stuff with either, but it takes a ton of effort to even begin to play one in a way that they don't suck (Tier 5, possibly Tier 6).

    But nothing can save the Soulborn.

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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by Togo View Post
    How about the opposite of your idea? Is there a common thread amongst those who don't find the Tiers useful that they tend to make sufficient changes to a character to move it up or down a Tier, thus making the Tier system a relatively poor predictor of how their characters turn out in practice?
    This is an incorrect application of the system, in my personal opinion. It's non-applicable to specific characters and builds. It's designed to measure classes as a whole.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hand_of_Vecna View Post
    This feels odd. Shouldn't anecdotal experience seeing the class at your table be largely irrelevant?
    I actually do QA work for a living. Once I start to see a class in action, I tend to analyze the heck out of it. Make builds with it, look at the abilities it has, figure out how it links in with everything else, and so on. It's just what I naturally do. The unincluded classes tend to be ones that I've not seen in action, don't inspire me, and generally that I then don't understand with confidence.

    So, it's a lot more than just anecdotes.

    As for putting community suggestions in, I played with that in one version that was lost. In that, I had stuff in itallics to mean "I don't actually know, but others seem to say it's here."

    I might do that again.

    JaronK

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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Let me put it this way: the Tier system is well organized, not very hard to understand, and for the most part probably correct. However, it is of little practical use in games I play, because
    1. For some reason the uselessness of the lowest tiered classes just isn't apparent. Monks, fighters, knights, rogues, they all do just fine. (note that I typically play levels 3-10)
    2. Obsessing about where to tier a multiclassed character (where most toons end up eventually) is more work than worth, thus decreasing the value of tiers in the first place
    3. Game specific details (odd dungeons, other environmental factors, etc) skew the tiers this way or that, further decreasing the value of the ranking.

    That said, I'm sure others find immensly useful.

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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by Amphetryon View Post
    As I read the posts with negative opinions of the Tier System, the objections appear to be with the root idea behind it - for whatever reason - rather than the quibbles that have cropped up in past Tier discussions over whether, for example, Beguiler is T2 or T3 and if Warblade should be T3 or T4. Objections that are systemic in nature don't seem to be rooted in "you misplaced X Classes," instead reading as "no ranking system of this nature has value."
    Sure, but if you regularly yank about individual characters so that they go up and down Tiers from where the ranking system would put them, then the ranking system doesn't have value, nor would any similar system, because it doesn't in fact tell you anything about an individual character. The Tier system tells you about the potential flexibility of each class. If you table doesn't in fact start with a class and only then build out what they're going to play from there, then the system is of far less practical benefit.

    Quote Originally Posted by 123456789blaaa View Post
    I interpreted his point to be that while the tier system itself is fine, it causes lots of trouble when people who don't understand it try to "use" it.This makes the tier system more trouble than it's worth.

    Am I interpreting your point correctly Togo?
    Yes, although I also don't find the Tier system terribly useful when it is used correctly, because it's a formulation of a sub set of points about balance that I understand already.

    Basically, when balancing a game between different PCs, I don't find balancing class choice useful. Think about it for a moment - what reason is there to worry about the balance between what choices could be made for a particular class, when what you actually need is to consider the specific characters that are being proposed for your particular game? If I'm looking at a poorly built blaster sorceror, and a highly optimised wildshape ranger, the Tier system tells me almost nothing about how these will balance in the game. If I understand how the blaster sorceror has made inflexbile choices, and why the ranger is so highly optimised, then I can fit them in more accurately, but I don't need the Tier system to do that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gwendol View Post
    Let me put it this way: the Tier system is well organized, not very hard to understand, and for the most part probably correct. However, it is of little practical use in games I play, because
    1. For some reason the uselessness of the lowest tiered classes just isn't apparent. Monks, fighters, knights, rogues, they all do just fine. (note that I typically play levels 3-10)
    2. Obsessing about where to tier a multiclassed character (where most toons end up eventually) is more work than worth, thus decreasing the value of tiers in the first place
    3. Game specific details (odd dungeons, other environmental factors, etc) skew the tiers this way or that, further decreasing the value of the ranking.

    That said, I'm sure others find immensly useful.
    Exactly. Due to the nature of your particular game, and kinds of builds you get in practice, the Tier system doesn't give you a reliable prediction.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Togo View Post
    Exactly. Due to the nature of your particular game, and kinds of builds you get in practice, the Tier system doesn't give you a reliable prediction.
    Amen to that. The value of any given model typically lies in its predictive power. The tier system gives you descriptive power (for single base classes).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Togo View Post
    Basically, when balancing a game between different PCs, I don't find balancing class choice useful. Think about it for a moment - what reason is there to worry about the balance between what choices could be made for a particular class, when what you actually need is to consider the specific characters that are being proposed for your particular game? If I'm looking at a poorly built blaster sorceror, and a highly optimised wildshape ranger, the Tier system tells me almost nothing about how these will balance in the game. If I understand how the blaster sorceror has made inflexbile choices, and why the ranger is so highly optimised, then I can fit them in more accurately, but I don't need the Tier system to do that.
    Right, but then the tier system is merely a tool that can be used to address that more easily - if used correctly. You said it yourself: you are an experienced DM. Less experienced DMs can use the tier system as a shortcut to know what they are doing wrong in their game, and take the steps necessary to make all their players feel useful. And I don't mean telling them to reroll characters in the right tier. Maybe he needs to throw more loot towards the guys in lower tiers, or maybe he needs to talk about Polymorph with the party's Wizard. If everyone in the game is reasonable, that is all that might need to be done.

    Following up with the tool analogy, if you are very proficient when using a cast iron hammer and are happy with the results, it makes sense not wanting to use a balanced, tempered steel one. But it also makes sense for other people opting to use the latter. You might argue that they will never know what it really means to hammer down a nail, but they will be doing a fine job nonetheless. And you can't even discount the fact that some old-timers will change to that hammer simply because they find that it makes their work more efficient.

    TL;DR: If people find that their game is lacking in balance, it is fine to use the tier system if that will result in an overall better experience. After all, D&D is about having a good time with friends, and if someone is feeling left out, the right thing to do is to try and let him/her in the fun.
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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by Karnith View Post
    Maybe you need to put the warnings in size 72, bold font at the top?
    I can tell that's sarcasm on your part, but if it catches someone's attention, it's more likely to be read, maybe something a little more like this?

    WARNING: The Tier System is not meant to be used without a basic understanding of the ideals behind it's creation. Any use of it without prior reading of both posts in their entirety, may cause more problems than the Tier System is intended to solve.

    As I've said, it's possible that something like this at the top of JaronK's first post could help, but it's just as likely to be ignored and the problem of ignorant people ignoring all his supplemental material will persist.


    Also Answerer, I know that the people who use a system wrongly aren't a flaw in the system itself. However, they are a problem some people have with using the system. If we can't educate people in the correct use of the system, then the ones with the potential to learn from their mistakes, never will.
    Last edited by Threadnaught; 2013-01-25 at 08:55 AM.

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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by Big Fau View Post
    Your last point is spot-on. Even Sinfire Titan found the class subpar, and he loves Incarnum enough to have wrote four entire handbooks on it! As for the Incarnate and Totemist, I'd wager they are a lot like Sorcerers: Capable of being potent, but the ceiling is quite far from the floor. You can do some impressive (Tier 3) stuff with either, but it takes a ton of effort to even begin to play one in a way that they don't suck (Tier 5, possibly Tier 6).

    But nothing can save the Soulborn.
    The incarnate does have an atrociously low op-floor, that's true, but I don't think that the totemist's is as low; it's pretty evident what you're supposed to do when you're playing a totemist (almost all of its soulmelds grant natural attacks in one way or another), its class features are pretty evidently powerful (totem bind, anyone?), and thanks to its chassis and the bonuses from its soulmelds it looks like it'd be good at doing what it does out of the box.

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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    It seems to me that a lot of detractors of the tier system simply can't see past their own navel.

    "I don't need it", "I can judge whitout it", "But this character in my campaign does better than this one even though the system say the opposite should happen".

    They go around thinking the tier system is a definitive guide to which class will be more powerful than any other no matter what and then claim it's worthless when in their experience it doesn't happen.

    Except no one claims it's the end all be all of class ranking, it's a general guideline for the system as a whole.

    And yet they keep making the same stupid arguments (claiming a vanilla ice cream is worthless and shouldn't be called a dessert because it's not a banana split is a pretty stupid argument) no matter how many time you explain the situation.

    It's not because specific trump general that general has to be deemed worthless forever. It still work for most situation.

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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by Elderand View Post
    It seems to me that a lot of detractors of the tier system simply can't see past their own navel.

    "I don't need it", "I can judge whitout it", "But this character in my campaign does better than this one even though the system say the opposite should happen".

    They go around thinking the tier system is a definitive guide to which class will be more powerful than any other no matter what and then claim it's worthless when in their experience it doesn't happen.

    Except no one claims it's the end all be all of class ranking, it's a general guideline for the system as a whole.

    And yet they keep making the same stupid arguments (claiming a vanilla ice cream is worthless and shouldn't be called a dessert because it's not a banana split is a pretty stupid argument) no matter how many time you explain the situation.

    It's not because specific trump general that general has to be deemed worthless forever. It still work for most situation.
    Nonsense. Everyone knows that if you can find an exception to a given rule, that rule must be thrown out as bogus forever.
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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by Togo View Post
    Exactly. Due to the nature of your particular game, and kinds of builds you get in practice, the Tier system doesn't give you a reliable prediction.
    You do realize it's not supposed to give you a prediction, right? Do you realize what it's supposed to do?

    JaronK

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    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by Elderand View Post
    (claiming a vanilla ice cream is worthless and shouldn't be called a dessert because it's not a banana split is a pretty stupid argument) no matter how many time you explain the situation.
    Except I am not trying to persecute the tier system for its simplicity. A closer analogy would be claiming that it is wrong for a judge in a banana split competition to try to judge the entries solely based on which brand of vanilla ice cream they used in their creations. And furthermore, intimately studying the parameters of different ice cream brands is ultimately a useless endeavor, because it has very little effect on the final flavor of the banana split, therefore the information will likely just establish an unnecessary bias.


    Quote Originally Posted by A Whole Bunch of People
    It's not the hammer's fault, guys!
    Not all tools are created equal. Some tools are elegant in design and intuitively made. Some tools cause more problems than they fix. Just because something can be classified as a tool does not absolve it from its responsibilities of functionality. And you can't automatically compare tools. Tools must be judge based off of their individual merits. Norton anti-virus is a tool and it is horrible. I can't compare it to a hammer and then suddenly make it ok.


    I will try one more time to try and list my insights on the design problem of the tier system, since i don't feel that my argument is properly understood at this point.

    First, lets establish some facts.

    Fact #1 The tier system expertly analyzes the RAW class component of D&D solely from a design standpoint, and then ranks said classes based on their potential capabilities.

    Fact #2 The tier system admits that it will be influenced by other game parameters outside of class design. It calls on you to re-assess the information with the new factors in mind.

    Fact #3 Because the tier system must be re-assessed with the addition of new factors, AND because player capability, GM interpretation, and prestiging are all "new factors", the tier system will always need to be re-assessed. Every single table in the world will have to re-assess the information provided in the tier system.

    Fact #4 Using the tier system without properly re-assessing the information is a misuse and can cause a laundry list of negative outcomes.

    Now, these facts force only a few possible outcomes for users of the tier system.

    Either

    #1 You lack the capability to re-assess the information in the tier list. In this case you shouldn't use the tier system at all. You will ALWAYS force a misuse. The consequences of a misuse can vary greatly from non-existant to detrimental. However, it is worth noting that a positive experience from a misuse can not be credited as a positive mark for the design of the tier system as it was a misuse of the system. This is an inherent design flaw of the system as it was intended to be a way to make the information easily accessible and useful to all the community. However, if the entire community does use it, there will automatically be misuse. In other words, it is intended to be widely used for benefit of a community, but is designed (whether intentionally or not) to be detrimental if used improperly and has a skill requirement to be used properly.

    Or

    #2 You use the principles of the tier system to learn how to accurately gauge the power of the characters in your game. In this instance, the tier system has been used as a critical thinking teaching tool. In reality, what you have done is reverse engineer the thought process behind the original analyzing of the classes in order to learn how to accurately analyze power. On this front, the tier system is a success for a lot of people, however much of the tier systems design is unnecessary for achieving this goal. You do not need to rank the classes numerically in order to teach people critical thinking, for instance. So as a result, this positive outcome of the tier system does not absolve the negative outcome of the system stemming from poor design.


    Or #3 You were already capable of analyzing data and gauging the respective power of a group of characters. In this instance, the tier system is superfluous.




    So you can see my complaint with the system is not with the people who misuse it, it is mainly that it is designed to always force a misuse in some % of the users. It will either be misused, unnecessary, or partially useful. Being partially useful does not outweigh the constant misuse.


    In response to the "well what would u do?" questions. I think that removing the ranking system altogether and adapting it to be solely a guide to critical thinking that focuses on how JaronK reached his original assessments instead of focusing on the results of those assessments. Essentially, in every positive story I have heard about the tier system, the users have already been using the tier system this way. So why not just change to guide to only be about those principles of classification. That way it removes the unwanted misuses.

    Example:
    "Disclaimer:
    This is intended to be a guide to show how to accurately access the capabilities of characters. The information provided in this guide is not conclusive and will be detrimental if transposed directly onto your campaign. You must repeat the analytical process for each individual character within the parameters your table provides. It is meant as a teaching tool to arrive at an accurate assessment of group compatibility in an attempt to create groups where all members can contribute and no one is overshadowed."



    P.S. I respect JaronK's analytical mind, and bare no ill will towards him. I also feel his intentions were nothing if not admirable. I do not speak from ignorance and have studied the tier system in depth and pondered the issues at hand long and hard. I hope you understand and receive my point of view, even if you do not agree with it.

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