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  1. - Top - End - #151
    Ogre in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Structural Class Changes (Mana, Talents, Clear gish structure)

    Ignore my mention of "end of next turn" earlier. I'm on vacation and only briefly read it. End of current turn as written is the intended behavior.
    It's quite a strong 3rd level feature.

    Quote Originally Posted by iridisink View Post
    Thank you again for all this work. One of the very cool things about your rules is the ability to mix-and-match abilities without too much fear of throwing off the balance. For example, one of my players is a warlock whose patron is a hybrid fey-shadow to suit the in-game story (shadow spells, shadow abilities at levels 6, 14, fey for all the rest). I know your rules aren't explicitly designed for this kind of hacking, but that flexibility is great for aligning the mechanical side with the story.
    Great to hear you enjoy the rules! Thanks for the feedback!

  2. - Top - End - #152
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    Default Re: Structural Class Changes (Mana, Talents, Clear gish structure)

    Aura of Discord
    At 6th level, you emanate an aura of discord, which gives you the following benefits.
    Cull the Herd. You have advantage on melee attack rolls against any creature that has one or more of its allies within 5 feet of it.
    Treacherous Strike. If a creature within 5 feet of you misses you with a melee attack, you can use your reaction to force the attacker to reroll that attack against a creature of your choice that is also within 5 feet of the attacker. The ability fails and is wasted if the attacker is immune to being charmed.
    The aura lasts for 1 minute or until you fall unconscious.
    You can use this ability three times. You regain expended uses of it when you finish a short or long rest.

    Was wondering, if the aura lasts for 1 minute, how is it activated?
    Also, using the aura 3 times per short rest seems like a lot, compared to something like "push 10ft" from Tempest. Is it that you can only use Cull/Threacherous 3 times per aura?

    Edit: Aura of Discord is level 6 Trickery Domain.
    Last edited by Ugganaut; 2018-03-29 at 04:44 AM.

  3. - Top - End - #153
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    Default Re: Structural Class Changes (Mana, Talents, Clear gish structure)

    Another thing I noticed with the new mana system, is that 1/3 casters at level 4 and 5 have their mana pool increase from 2 to 3, but the limit is still 2. They have no way of spending that extra mana point, making the increase pointless. Was it just how the math worked out?

  4. - Top - End - #154
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    Default Re: Structural Class Changes (Mana, Talents, Clear gish structure)

    Aura of Discord is straight from the Paladin UA.

    I added "The aura lasts for 1 minute or until you fall unconscious." which makes it unclear. Removing that allows the ability to be used 3 times which should be more clear.
    The tempest ability can be without limit (besides mana), though as you say it's a bit on the weak side. I plan to look through all houserules in the next month and clean some things up.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ugganaut View Post
    Another thing I noticed with the new mana system, is that 1/3 casters at level 4 and 5 have their mana pool increase from 2 to 3, but the limit is still 2. They have no way of spending that extra mana point, making the increase pointless. Was it just how the math worked out?
    More mana without an increase in limit is there in case the mana can be used for other things. For example a monk multiclass could allow 1 mana to be used. There are other cases of 1 mana uses as well.

  5. - Top - End - #155
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    Default Re: Structural Class Changes (Mana, Talents, Clear gish structure)

    Quote Originally Posted by Kryx View Post
    Aura of Discord is straight from the Paladin UA.
    Ah, so the 3 limit seems to be linked to Treacherous Strike, and Cull the Herd is always active with the aura.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kryx View Post
    More mana without an increase in limit is there in case the mana can be used for other things. For example a monk multiclass could allow 1 mana to be used. There are other cases of 1 mana uses as well.
    Was looking at Bloodrager. That makes sense though.

    Thanks again.

  6. - Top - End - #156
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    Default Re: Structural Class Changes (Mana, Talents, Clear gish structure)


  7. - Top - End - #157
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    Default Re: Structural Class Changes (Mana, Talents, Clear gish structure)

    With these minor changes to a small amount of the classes is it right to assume that the amount of Talents is in a sweet spot at the moment where there aren't too many of them given out in your view? I believe I read earlier in the thread that you thought you might shrink the amount the classes get down.

    And aside, anything on the Dueling Fighting Stance change found (just as a quick reminder)?

  8. - Top - End - #158
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    Default Re: Structural Class Changes (Mana, Talents, Clear gish structure)

    9 talents is a good spot with a good progression - it'll remain.

    As before Dueling fighting stance is balanced, adding about 11-13% over defense when the goal is ~10%.
    Dueling needs a talent, and that may then adjust that math, but I struggle to make decent martial talents that aren't pure math. If you have ideas or links to peoples ideas please feel free to share.

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    Default Re: Structural Class Changes (Mana, Talents, Clear gish structure)

    I don't really have any ideas as I'm not a mathy person nor a homebrewer, I was more asking as that was the fighting style my character has (which, should I ever convince my group to move to your system, would be a moot point as you can stance dance in your rules). It was just mere curiosity about the change is all, I was interested in hearing the reasoning behind it. So thank you for the response!

  10. - Top - End - #160
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    Default Re: Structural Class Changes (Mana, Talents, Clear gish structure)

    All and all, this keeps getting better, so once again my hat is off to you. That being said, i thought about what you said about the undeath domain stuff, and I came up with this real quick. I have no idea how balanced it is, though, but it may give you ideas, so I'd appreciate an opinion on it...

    Spoiler: Acolyte Undeath Domain
    Show
    Domain Spells

    1st: Cause Fear, False Life
    3rd: Blindness/Deafness, Ray of Enfeeblement
    5th: Animate Dead, Vampiric Touch
    7th: Blight, Death Ward
    9th: Dance Macabre, Enervation

    Skeletal Servants

    At 3rd level, you learn how to raise your own personal skeleton minions. Once per-long rest, you can raise a single skeleton with the following benefits as a bonus action:

    • Its hit points (and hit point maximum) equal 2 x your proficiency bonus d8 + your Acolyte level.
    • It adds your proficiency bonus to its weapon damage rolls.

    You can command skeletons you create this way as if they where created by an Animate Dead spell cast by you, and they remain reanimated for 24 hours, or until you finish a long rest (whichever comes first) Starting at 4th level, you can raise a number of skeletons equal to your proficiency bonus when you use this feature instead. However, when you do this, they gain none of the additional benefits this feature grants normally. (So their hit points are not increased and they do not recieve a damage bonus).

    Channel Divinity

    Also at 3rd level, you gain the following Channel Divinity options:

    Command Undead. As an action, you target one undead you can see within 30ft and invoke your divine authority over it. It must make a Charisma saving throw. On a failed save, it must obey your commands for the next 24 hours, or until you use this Channel Divinity again. Undead who's CR are equal to or greater than your level are immune to this Channel Divinity.

    Marshal Undead. As an action, you rally the undead under your control, making them fight harder. When you do this, all undead you control that can hear your voice gain advantage on their weapon attack rolls for 1 minute.

    Master Reanimator

    At 6th level, you learn how to surpass the normal limits of necromancy and animate stronger undead. If your mana limit would not normally allow you to cast Animate Dead, you can treat your mana limit as 5 for the purpose of determining whether or not you can prepare and cast Animate Dead, as well as for actually casting the spell (but not any other purposes). When you can cast Animate Dead, you can extend its casting time to 1 hour to have it create stronger undead. If you do this, that Animate Dead spell can target small and large creatures, and non-humanoids, in addition to the medium humanoids it could target normally. Any Animate Dead spell you cast this way also gains an expensive material component: 25gp worth of black onyx per-hit die of each undead the spell would raise (which is consumed in the casting).

    Additionally, any skeletons or zombies created by that Animate Dead spell do not use their standard monster statistics. Instead, they use the statistics of the creatures they where in life altered by the skeleton or zombie NPC features (DMG pg. 282). However, regardless of how many times you cast Animate Dead this way, you can only control a number of skeletons and zombies with statistics altered by this feature whose total combined CRs do not exceed your Acolyte level. (Your DM also witholds the right to bar you from reanimating any creature they deem too problematic.)

    Unlife Healer

    Starting at 14th level, you learn how to use your heal the undead. You treat undead as living creatures instead of undead for the effects of Acolyte spells and class features that heal hit points or remove conditions (such as Cure Wounds, Greater Restoration and your Lay on Hands Channel Divinity). Additionally, whenever you would heal hit points due to the effect of a Vampiric Touch spell, you can instead distribute that healing among yourself any number of undead you control within 30ft. (the total combined healing all creatures you heal this way receive must equal the hit points that use of Vampiric Touch would heal.) You can also make a ranged spell attack with a range of 30ft instead of a melee spell attack when using a Vampiric Touch spell.

    Undead Transformation

    At 20th level you achieve your much-sought after transcendence, entering into a twilight state between life and undeath. You no longer age, and do not need to eat, sleep or breath to survive. (Though you may still ingest substances, take rests and gain the benefits of both.) You canít be blinded, deafened, frightened, or poisoned, and if an attack is a critical hit against you, it doesnít deal its extra damage to you. You also gain resistance to your bludgeoning, piercing and slashing damage from non-magical sources.

    However, you count as undead rather than living for spells and abilities that specifically target only undead or effect undead differently than other creatures. (So a Cure Wounds spell cast by an ally would not heal you. However, due to your Unlife Healer feature, a Cure Wounds spell you cast on yourself would.)

    Additionally, with your body primed for transition into undeath, you are now ready to undergo your transformation into a true undead. With your DM's permission, you may complete a dark ritual that allows you to transform into an undead creature of your choice (Typical choices being the Lich, Mummy Lord, Vampire and for Paladins the Death Knight). Your DM determines how exactly this will change your statistics and what the ritual entails, though it typically involves expensive material components and committing at least one horrifically evil act. (Such as sacrificing a celestial or humanoid child.) Your DM may make you undergo a trial or quest to discover the instructions for this ritual, or may make it a reward for you to receive at the end of the campaign.


    Again, no idea how balanced this mock-up subclass is, but I took your ideas/advice on it and created this VERY rough mock up for you to comment on/look at if/when you have the time.

    EDIT: Made some edits to the domain, mostly clarifying language and fixing up a few of the rougher features. Still may not be totally balanced, though.

    EDIT #2: Just realized the 6th level ability was useless to Paladins when they gain it, so I altered it to make it not useless for paladins at the level they get it. More balance comments appreciated, as normal.
    Last edited by Giegue; 2018-04-02 at 06:48 AM.
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  11. - Top - End - #161
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    Default Re: Structural Class Changes (Mana, Talents, Clear gish structure)

    I'm in the middle of a rework of spells which will alter how I do subclasses. That rework makes it unnecessary to have multple of the same spell at different power levels (Invisibility/Greater Invisibility, Lesser Restoration/Greater Restoration, Animate Dead/Create Undead/etc). That will impact the undeath theme in the new system, but I can try to provide some quick feedback:

    Quote Originally Posted by Giegue View Post
    Skeletal Servants
    At 3rd level, you learn how to raise your own personal skeleton minions. Once per-long rest, you can raise a single skeleton with the following benefits as a bonus action:

    • Its hit points (and hit point maximum) equal 2 x your proficiency bonus d8 + your Acolyte level.
    • It adds your proficiency bonus to its weapon damage rolls.

    You can command skeletons you create this way as if they where created by an Animate Dead spell cast by you, and they remain reanimated for 24 hours, or until you finish a long rest (whichever comes first) Starting at 4th level, you can raise a number of skeletons equal to your proficiency bonus when you use this feature instead. However, when you do this, they gain none of the additional benefits this feature grants normally. (So their hit points are not increased and they do not recieve a damage bonus).
    This feature is to fix the statblock of undead creatures. I'd suggest fixing them directly instead of doing it via this feature. I created a whole spreadsheet to calculate the effectiveness of creature summons. So creating a CR 1 skeleton that has +5 to hit and does 2d6 + 3 damage would be sufficient and then anyone who casts the spell can make it useful. Conjure Animals and similar spells are also available to all subclasses so Animate Dead should be as well. Your subclass is using a subclass to fix an underpowered spell - not a good option imo.

    Quote Originally Posted by Giegue View Post
    Channel Divinity
    Also at 3rd level, you gain the following Channel Divinity options:

    Command Undead. As an action, you target one undead you can see within 30ft and invoke your divine authority over it. It must make a Charisma saving throw. On a failed save, it must obey your commands for the next 24 hours, or until you use this Channel Divinity again. Undead who's CR are equal to or greater than your level are immune to this Channel Divinity.

    Marshal Undead. As an action, you rally the undead under your control, making them fight harder. When you do this, all undead you control that can hear your voice gain advantage on their weapon attack rolls for 1 minute.
    As I said last time "Control Undead" exists in my Death domain and the Oathbreaker. It is worded better than your "Command Undead".

    "Marshal Undead" seems out of character for undead. It is flavored as a morale booster, but should be flavored with necrotic damage or something else. I'd have to think through options here.

    Quote Originally Posted by Giegue View Post
    Master Reanimator
    At 6th level, you learn how to surpass the normal limits of necromancy and animate stronger undead. When you can cast Animate Dead, you can extend its casting time to 1 hour to have it create stronger undead. If you do this, that Animate Dead spell can target small and large creatures, and non-humanoids, in addition to the medium humanoids it could target normally. Any Animate Dead spell you cast this way also gains an expensive material component: 25gp worth of black onyx per-hit die of each undead the spell would raise.

    Additionally, any skeletons or zombies created by that Animate Dead spell do not use their standard monster statistics. Instead, they use the statistics of the creatures they where in life altered by the skeleton or zombie NPC features (DMG pg. 282). However, regardless of how many times you cast Animate Dead this way, you can only control a number of skeletons and zombies with statistics altered by this feature whose total combined CRs do not exceed your Acolyte level. (Your DM witholds the right to bar you from reanimating any creature they deem too problematic.)
    As above animate dead should be a viable spell and not need these type of fixes.
    Beyond that this is insanely overpowered. PCs will generally fight equivalent level CR creatures or higher and as soon as one is killed the PC now has a NPC pet with the CR +/- 2 of the PC level. A 6th level PC having a CR 8 pet is off the charts broken. For comparison a Wizard has to be level 9 to summon a CR 5 elemental which they don't even have full control over.

    Quote Originally Posted by Giegue View Post
    Unlife Healer
    Starting at 14th level, you learn how to use your heal the undead. You treat undead as living creatures instead of undead for the effects of Acolyte spells and class features that heal hit points or remove conditions (such as Cure Wounds, Greater Restoration and your Lay on Hands Channel Divinity). Additionally, You can make a ranged spell attack with a range of 30ft instead of a melee spell attack when using the Vampiric Touch spell by using your move as a part of that attack. (you do not actually move when you do this.) Whenever you would heal hit points with a Vampiric Touch attack made this way, you can instead distribute that healing among yourself any number of undead you control within 30ft. (the total combined healing all creatures you heal this way receive must equal the hit points that use of Vampiric Touch would heal.)
    The first part seems mechanically fine, though out of flavor of a necromancer. A necromancer would just reanimate the bones/flesh after letting it fall apart or it would get a new body to animate.
    The second part is mechanically problematic - 5e doesn't have a move action and using a part of a move as a resource is faux pas. If anything it should be a bonus action. The rest seems fine though.

    Quote Originally Posted by Giegue View Post
    Undead Transformation
    At 20th level you achieve your much-sought after transcendence, entering into a twilight state between life and undeath. You no longer age, and do not need to eat, sleep or breath to survive. (Though you may still ingest substances, take rests and gain the benefits of both.) You canít be blinded, deafened, frightened, or poisoned, and if an attack is a critical hit against you, it doesnít deal its extra damage to you. You also gain resistance to your bludgeoning, piercing and slashing damage from non-magical sources.

    However, you count as undead rather than living for spells and abilities that specifically target only undead or effect undead differently than other creatures. (So a Cure Wounds spell cast by an ally would not heal you. However, due to your Unlife Healer feature, a Cure Wounds spell you cast on yourself would.)

    Additionally, with your body primed for transition into undeath, you are now ready to undergo your transformation into a true undead. With your DM's permission, you may complete a dark ritual that allows you to transform into an undead creature of your choice (Typical choices being Lich, Mummy Lord or Vampire). Your DM determines how exactly this will change your statistics and what the ritual entails, though it typically involves expensive material components and committing at least one horrifically evil act. (Such as sacrificing a celestial or humanoid child.) Your DM may make you undergo a trial or quest to discover the instructions for this ritual, or may make it a reward for you to receive at the end of the campaign.
    Undead Transformation seems like something that would occur around 14th level (See "Indestructible Life" under the Undying Occultist or "Resilient Warrior" under the War Domain Acolyte or "Earth Aspect" under the Iron Mountain Monk). I'd drop the blinded condition immunity and a few others, instead favoring the ones used by the lich. Critical avoidance is not a thing in 5e so I'd drop that.

    I wouldn't make a lich transformation part of a subclass - none of the subclasses that are themed on dragons, phoenixes, etc turn into those creatures. The idea of "Throw out your character sheet and use this statblock" doesn't work well. If it's executed well I could see it work, but not via that method.

  12. - Top - End - #162
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    EvilClericGuy

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    Default Re: Structural Class Changes (Mana, Talents, Clear gish structure)

    Thats understandable. Like I said, it was/is all very rough. I was just spitballing ideas, is all. Thanks for all the help, though! You talk about altering the spells instead of actually making the subclass, which is a fine idea if the spells where actually altered. However, as of now, your still using the same exact animate dead spell from core, which is pretty terrible without the bonuses the school of Necromancy wizard gets in vanella 5e...the most important of which is the health increase, as one of the two main reasons the skeletons and zombies from animate dead are so bad is their extreme frailty/lack of HP.

    I know you think the wizard bonuses are a bad idea, but I feel the most simple/elegant sollution to this necromancer issue is to just turn the school of necromancy's undead thralls feature into a talent available to Acolytes, Mages and Occultists...which would allow all three classes to be decent with animate dead without reinventing the wheel or leaving it in the hands of the DM to alter monster statblocks themselves/require DM fiat to make the spell useful. I understand if your against this and all, but I really think its the best solution to the "animate dead issue", and it would likely look something like this:

    Undead Mastery
    Prerequisites: Acolyte, Mage, or Occultist, ability to cast Animate Dead

    You can animate stronger undead and control more undead than other spellcasters. When you cast the spell Animate Dead, you can target one additional corpse or bone pile and create one additional skeleton or zombie (as applicable). Additionally, when you create one or more undead creatures with a necromancy spell (such as Animate Dead or Create Undead), they gain the following additional benefits:

    • They increase their hit point maximums by your level
    • They add your proficiency bonus to their weapon damage rolls


    Conversely, if you plan on ever giving other classes such as sorcerers and naturalists a way to access animate dead (such as converting the spores druid circle from UA to the naturallist), you can just add those classes onto the list of ones that can take this talent/into the prerequisites so literally every spellcasting class can be made into a necromancer instead of just limiting it to one archetype, if thats not what you want.
    Last edited by Giegue; 2018-04-02 at 07:11 AM.
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  13. - Top - End - #163
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    Default Re: Structural Class Changes (Mana, Talents, Clear gish structure)

    Quote Originally Posted by Giegue View Post
    Thats understandable. Like I said, it was/is all very rough. I was just spitballing ideas, is all. Thanks for all the help, though! You talk about altering the spells instead of actually making the subclass, which is a fine idea if the spells where actually altered. However, as of now, your still using the same exact animate dead spell from core, which is pretty terrible without the bonuses the school of Necromancy wizard gets in vanella 5e...the most important of which is the health increase, as one of the two main reasons the skeletons and zombies from animate dead are so bad is their extreme frailty/lack of HP.
    I did a rough DPR calculation in the spreadsheet that I linked. Allow Animate dead to either summon 2 CR 1/2 or 1 CR 1. For CR 1/2 just add multiattack. For CR 1 add multiattack and increase the dex modifier by 1. Increase their HP to match CR 1 creatures and you're good to go.

    Quote Originally Posted by Giegue View Post
    I know you think the wizard bonuses are a bad idea, but I feel the most simple/elegant sollution to this necromancer issue is to just turn the school of necromancy's undead thralls feature into a talent available to Acolytes, Mages and Occultists...which would allow all three classes to be decent with animate dead without reinventing the wheel or leaving it in the hands of the DM to alter monster statblocks themselves/require DM fiat to make the spell useful. I understand if your against this and all, but I really think its the best solution to the "animate dead issue"
    My feedback will always be that balancing the spell via a subclass is a bad idea. You're free to handle it however you wish, but keep in mind that doing it the way you're doing it just makes it a worse version of other conjure spells as those work by default and don't have effectively dead subclass features to fix the spells.

    Just modify the monsters yourself and save yourself the trouble of subclass features. The DM doesn't need to do so - you can provide a higher CR skeleton. Monster CRs needn't be static - there are rules for adjusting them in the DMG. Trying to keep static CR monsters and adjusting them elsewhere will always provide poor results imo. Things like AC, multiattack, resistances, and other features that should exist for higher CR monsters will be lost.

    Quote Originally Posted by Giegue View Post
    Conversely, if you plan on ever giving other classes such as sorcerers and naturalists a way to access animate dead (such as converting the spores druid circle from UA to the naturallist), you can just add those classes onto the list of ones that can take this talent/into the prerequisites so literally every spellcasting class can be made into a necromancer instead of just limiting it to one archetype, if thats not what you want.
    In my new spell themes version every class will be able to access any theme that they desire. So a Druid could choose the Undeath theme and the spells in that theme will be viable themselves without needing a subclass/talent tax that fixes it.

  14. - Top - End - #164
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    EvilClericGuy

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    Default Re: Structural Class Changes (Mana, Talents, Clear gish structure)

    So in your new spells theme version are you going to make the updates to the undead minions you listed above "canon" and an official part of the actual rules text or are you still gonna need DM approval of homebrew custom statblocks for undead (aka DM fiat) to make animate dead useful? If the former, then thats a fine fix and I look forward to seeing the new version.
    Last edited by Giegue; 2018-04-02 at 08:49 AM.
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  15. - Top - End - #165
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    Default Re: Structural Class Changes (Mana, Talents, Clear gish structure)

    I will add standard statblocks - I've already done so for Acid Elemental, Ice Elemental, and Lightning Elemental.

    I'm cleaning up the system now and will post a rough preview within the next few hours. (not including undeath)

  16. - Top - End - #166
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    Default Re: Structural Class Changes (Mana, Talents, Clear gish structure)

    Alright, cool! I will ask, though, is the Acolyte staying wis or cha for both archetypes? I asked because I REALLY liked how you can now have charismatic clerics (which I always thought should be a thing) and wise Paladins, and would find it sad if Clerics where forced to go Wis and Paladins forced to go Cha again. So I will throw my vote in the hate now for keeping that aspect of acolyte in-tact. I also vote for keeping their unarmored defense feature, as the "cloth/robe-wearing priest" is a pretty iconic character trope due to MMOs and games like Final Fantasy, and something both myself and my friends all have wanted to be in this game for a while.
    Last edited by Giegue; 2018-04-02 at 10:02 AM.
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  17. - Top - End - #167
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    Default Re: Structural Class Changes (Mana, Talents, Clear gish structure)

    Quote Originally Posted by Giegue View Post
    I will ask, though, is the Acolyte staying wis or cha for both archetypes? I asked because I REALLY liked how you can now have charismatic clerics (which I always thought should be a thing) and wise Paladins, and would find it sad if Clerics where forced to go Wis and Paladins forced to go Cha again. So I will throw my vote in the hate now for keeping that aspect of acolyte in-tact.
    I expect classes, archetypes, and subclasses to change in the following ways:
    • the mana and mana costs will be adjusted to the 1-6 mana system that I'm working on
    • classes will start with X amount of themes (say fire and frost)
    • subclass spells will likely be eliminated in favor of open ended spell choices or possibly limited to a theme
    • some subclass features will be moved to spells (which are granted 1/short rest for free or howver appropriate)
    • general clean up


    Quote Originally Posted by Giegue View Post
    I also vote for keeping their unarmored defense feature, as the "cloth/robe-wearing priest" is a pretty iconic character trope due to MMOs and games like Final Fantasy, and something both myself and my friends all have wanted to be in this game for a while.
    I only recently wrote that rule down. It's been in my head for a while, but now it's officially in my rules. It won't change either.


    I will keep the old version available for those who prefer to stick to 5e spell levels.

  18. - Top - End - #168
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    Default Re: Structural Class Changes (Mana, Talents, Clear gish structure)

    A preview of Thematic Spells. The themes completed so far likely will remain pretty similar in the final version. I'm working on other themes now.

    I'm using Spell Themes Balance to balance damage spells. Themes TODO isn't set in stone - I'm whittling my way down to figure out where everything fits.

    Feel free to suggest spells that fit the theme and aren't already covered in my lists. My general goal is around 20 for major themes (Fire, Frost, Earth, Shadow, etc) with less for less prominant themes (Corrosion, Poison, Time). I generally prefer to pull ideas from 5e and PF, though could possibly use other sources.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kryx View Post
    A preview of Thematic Spells. The themes completed so far likely will remain pretty similar in the final version. I'm working on other themes now.
    This looks really interesting. Look forward to seeing the finished product.
    I know my group would hesitate with the removal of mundane spell components, even though I personally like the simplicity. Our DM hasn't figured out a focus bypasses them already.

    I only had a brief skim through, I'll try have a better read when you're done.
    A few things I noticed.
    Meteor Swarm doesn't have a radius for the spheres. Edit: Which I now see spells have default areas listed at the start.
    Armor of Agathys seems like a Frost spell.
    Shadow Anchor looks particularly powerful for a cantrip. One failed save and they are restrained until they successfully escape using their action for the round.
    Firebolt does 1d8 instead of 1d10. Although igniting things could be a useful secondary benefit(or hindrance), other cantrips like Frostbite do the same damage with a more useful secondary effect. This might be a benefit or taking a particular theme though.
    I've mentioned before, I personally like your original balancing of cantrips. Firebolt was d10, a "weak" damage type(due to common resistance and possible collateral damage), good range. From there, the more useful the damage type/secondary effect, the less damage/range it did. Frostbite and Vicious Mockery were d6 for example. Eldritch Blast maybe d8 or d6 due to good damage type, range, and multiple attacks stacking with things like Hex.

    What made you start this rewrite?
    Last edited by Ugganaut; 2018-04-03 at 12:28 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ugganaut View Post
    I know my group would hesitate with the removal of mundane spell components, even though I personally like the simplicity. Our DM hasn't figured out a focus bypasses them already.
    Check out Fixing Spell Components: Keep Your Flavour, Mike Mearls, I Donít Like It. Spell components, as they work in D&D, only capture a small subset of fantasy ways of casting a spell. It should be an option to use them, but I'm aiming to not have it be the default option. In general they have almost no impact on mechanical balance, only hinder some cases like TWF, Sword & Board, etc.
    I'm aiming to provide them as a variant option, but we'll see how that is fleshed out when I get there.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ugganaut View Post
    Meteor Swarm doesn't have a radius for the spheres. Edit: Which I now see spells have default areas listed at the start.
    As you've found out: Spell areas have default sizes that scale with the mana expended. This is to allow spells like fireball to start at a size comparable for the mana and grow from there. See the "Changes" section at the end which talks about linear scaling a bit.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ugganaut View Post
    Armor of Agathys seems like a Frost spell.
    I chose shadow after reading https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carceri#Agathys. I'm unsure if ice or "void" is a larger component of Agathys. Perhaps ice is more important. I'll re-examine.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ugganaut View Post
    Shadow Anchor looks particularly powerful for a cantrip. One failed save and they are restrained until they successfully escape using their action for the round.
    Shadow Anchor is grappled, not restrained. Grappled is effectively speed 0 while restrained is much much stronger. Perhaps I'll increase the damage and change the grappled condition to 1 turn.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ugganaut View Post
    Firebolt does 1d8 instead of 1d10. Although igniting things could be a useful secondary benefit(or hindrance), other cantrips like Frostbite do the same damage with a more useful secondary effect. This might be a benefit or taking a particular theme though.
    I've mentioned before, I personally like your original balancing of cantrips. Firebolt was d10, a "weak" damage type(due to common resistance and possible collateral damage), good range. From there, the more useful the damage type/secondary effect, the less damage/range it did. Frostbite and Vicious Mockery were d6 for example. Eldritch Blast maybe d8 or d6 due to good damage type, range, and multiple attacks stacking with things like Hex.
    Spell Themes Balance indicates that cantrips have a good internal balance. Fire Bolt for example has some benefits over frostbite: It has a range of 120 vs 60 for frostbite, it is an attack which generally will have a 65% chance to hit compared to 55% change of frostbite applying, it can crit which makes it deal ~5% more damage on average, and lastly it can damage objects.
    If you think a cantrip is not balanced vs other cantrips please point out where my math has failed. Disadvantage on next attack for example I've weighted to be worth a modifier of 26% more valuable than no effect. That's calculated on the spells settings page.
    Damage types being different in value is quite overblown. People have this idea that fire spells are less valuable due to the plethora of demons and devils in the MM, but I've found that to simply be untrue. I'm not sure what you mean by "collateral damage" as it doesn't set things on fire.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ugganaut View Post
    What made you start this rewrite?
    If you check the changes section you can see several aspects of the 5e spell slot system that do not function well. I've tried to work within it for a very long time, balancing damage and trying to provide options for other damage types, but I've come to the point where it doesn't work for various reasons.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kryx View Post
    Check out Fixing Spell Components: Keep Your Flavour, Mike Mearls, I Donít Like It. Spell components, as they work in D&D, only capture a small subset of fantasy ways of casting a spell. It should be an option to use them, but I'm aiming to not have it be the default option. In general they have almost no impact on mechanical balance, only hinder some cases like TWF, Sword & Board, etc.
    I'm aiming to provide them as a variant option, but we'll see how that is fleshed out when I get there.
    I'd prefer it as a variant option too, for those that like that gritty feel. Aside from consumed components, which you still have, I find them completely pointless at best. I liked the Focus solution, because it gave casters a reason to carry their iconic symbols(staff, wand, holy symbol etc), now that implements aren't a thing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kryx View Post
    I chose shadow after reading https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carceri#Agathys. I'm unsure if ice or "void" is a larger component of Agathys. Perhaps ice is more important. I'll re-examine.
    I personally don't like spells with names like Agathys. It makes it feel so limited. I'd rather things like that be features in archetypes/subclasses. Mordenkainens Faithful Hound doesn't make much sense if your world has no Mordenkainen. Ice Armor seems like a better name for that spell. Just my opinion of course.


    Quote Originally Posted by Kryx View Post
    Shadow Anchor is grappled, not restrained. Grappled is effectively speed 0 while restrained is much much stronger. Perhaps I'll increase the damage and change the grappled condition to 1 turn.
    For a cantrip, I think 1 turn would be better.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kryx View Post
    Damage types being different in value is quite overblown. People have this idea that fire spells are less valuable due to the plethora of demons and devils in the MM, but I've found that to simply be untrue. I'm not sure what you mean by "collateral damage" as it doesn't set things on fire.
    Our DM's beg to differ :) Firebolt for instance, says "A flammable object hit by this spell ignites if it isnít being worn or carried." Which is fine if you hit your target, but if it misses, it hits something else usually. AoE fire spells tend to light up flammable objects. Thunder is another one I have issues with due to sound and unstable terrain in our games. Creature resistance isn't often an issue as you said, but combine those two things, and I'd prefer d8 force than d8 fire.

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    Flame Blade vs Shadow Blade.
    Both 2 mana, 5mins/mana.
    Both do 2d8 damage.
    Shadow Blade augments using d8, Flame Blade d6.
    Shadow Blade has advantage on dim/darkness, while Flame Blade is bright light. Flame Blade produces bright light, so unless they can negate it, it always has advantage day or night.
    Both say "If you drop the weapon or throw it, it dissipates at the end of the turn.", but only Shadow Blade has a range.
    It's possible there is nothing wrong with either of them, if the trade off for the constant advantage of Flame Blade is off-set by lower augment and no thrown option - just remove "or throw it" from Flame Blade.

    Fiery Rebuke - Spell does 3d6, then "Augment. The damage increases by 4d6 for each additional mana expended."
    Is that the right augment? Not use to the higher augment numbers.
    Edit: Actually this seems to be common throughout, so guessing its by design.
    Last edited by Ugganaut; 2018-04-03 at 10:22 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ugganaut View Post
    I'd prefer it as a variant option too, for those that like that gritty feel. Aside from consumed components, which you still have, I find them completely pointless at best. I liked the Focus solution, because it gave casters a reason to carry their iconic symbols(staff, wand, holy symbol etc), now that implements aren't a thing.
    Iconic symbols is something interesting to think about, but they shouldn't be required. A possible boon like 4e implements.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ugganaut View Post
    I personally don't like spells with names like Agathys. It makes it feel so limited. I'd rather things like that be features in archetypes/subclasses. Mordenkainens Faithful Hound doesn't make much sense if your world has no Mordenkainen. Ice Armor seems like a better name for that spell. Just my opinion of course.
    In general I'm removing all named aspects of spells. So "Melf's Acid Arrow" becomes "Acid Arrow"
    I agree with your message, but Armor of Agathys isn't Ice Armor so I have to be a bit careful with the naming. I'm wondering if Armor of Agathys even has design space if I add a "Winter's Bite" (like fiery rebuke) or "Ice Armor" (like gale cloak). Perhaps I should add one like shadow that is a bit of AC and a bit of damage. Then Armor of Agathys doesn't have much design value imo.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ugganaut View Post
    For a cantrip, I think 1 turn would be better.
    Agreed - I'll make this change

    Quote Originally Posted by Ugganaut View Post
    Our DM's beg to differ :) Firebolt for instance, says "A flammable object hit by this spell ignites if it isnít being worn or carried." Which is fine if you hit your target, but if it misses, it hits something else usually. AoE fire spells tend to light up flammable objects. Thunder is another one I have issues with due to sound and unstable terrain in our games. Creature resistance isn't often an issue as you said, but combine those two things, and I'd prefer d8 force than d8 fire.
    Flammable is not the same thing as damage resistance. You're talking about the ability to damage objects as not all fire spells have that ability (spells specify if they do or do not have such ability)
    If you play with the misses hit other creatures/objects rule (variant) then damaging objects matter, but that is not the normal rules for Fire Bolt.

    I'll have to think about it, but Fire Bolt is already a strong cantrip for its niche (range, attack&crit, damage objects). If you play by the misses hit other creatures/objects rule then I'd say Fire Bolt isn't the cantrip to use in closer proximity and one should probably favor a different cantrip.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ugganaut View Post
    Flame Blade vs Shadow Blade.
    Both 2 mana, 5mins/mana.
    Both do 2d8 damage.
    Shadow Blade augments using d8, Flame Blade d6.
    Shadow Blade has advantage on dim/darkness, while Flame Blade is bright light. Flame Blade produces bright light, so unless they can negate it, it always has advantage day or night.
    Both say "If you drop the weapon or throw it, it dissipates at the end of the turn.", but only Shadow Blade has a range.
    It's possible there is nothing wrong with either of them, if the trade off for the constant advantage of Flame Blade is off-set by lower augment and no thrown option - just remove "or throw it" from Flame Blade.
    Flame Blade augmenting as a d6 is a mistake. Spells will never augment as a dice different than the main dice (unless there are multiple damage dice sizes and then it'll choose one or both)
    I'll take a second look at the other aspects of the spells later tonight.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ugganaut View Post
    Fiery Rebuke - Spell does 3d6, then "Augment. The damage increases by 4d6 for each additional mana expended."
    Is that the right augment? Not use to the higher augment numbers.
    Edit: Actually this seems to be common throughout, so guessing its by design.
    Augmentation of spells is intended to provide actual improvements, not minor 1d6 improvements. It's one of the design goals. It is all still in line with the guidelines I've set which is quite close to the DMG guidelines for spell damage.

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    Changelog to Thematic spells:

    General
    • Added a note about more prominent themes for each damage type under "Changes" (many existed before, but a few are added below)

    Corrosion
    • Eruptive Pustule now does half as much damage the next round and its damage has been adjusted

    Earth
    • Added Rock Shield

    Fire
    • Flame Blade reworked a bit to remove the advantage and increase the damage

    Frost
    • Winterís Bite replaces Armor of Agathys

    Shadow
    • Shadow Anchor already lasted 1 round, though I've recalculated the damage and increased it to 1d8 from 1d6
    • Shadow Blade now has an after-image like umbral blade. It deals half as much damage as normal
    • Umbral Weapon automatically hits on a miss

    Storm
    • Wrath of the Storm now prevents reactions and its damage has been adjusted
    • Lightning Lure damage increased to 1d12 from 1d10

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    I am really digging the spell themes....I can't wait to see Undeath come out since thats the one I REALLY want. Likewise, I assume that the classes will start out with access to different numbers or free choices of spell themes to address the disparity between d8 casters like acolyte/naturalist and d6 casters like mage, occultist etc...? Like, say, a mage has her choice of four spell themes and gets one free bonus theme from her arcane tradition, while an acolyte has her choice of two spell themes and gets one free bonus theme from her domain choice and then the life theme as a second free bonus theme, regardless of domain.
    Last edited by Giegue; 2018-04-03 at 08:17 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Giegue View Post
    I am really digging the spell themes....I can't wait to see Undeath come out since thats the one I REALLY want. Likewise, I assume that the classes will start out with access to different numbers or free choices of spell themes to address the disparity between d8 casters like acolyte/naturalist and d6 casters like mage, occultist etc...? Like, say, a mage has her choice of four spell themes and gets one free bonus theme from her arcane tradition, while an acolyte has her choice of two spell themes and gets one free bonus theme from her domain choice and then the life theme as a second free bonus theme, regardless of domain.
    If you read the spells known section under spellcasting you'll see how it works. The number of themes will be up to each character, with each theme coming at the cost of spells known.

    I expect to aim for 15-25 spells known and about 3-5 themes for a full caster as the norm. We'll see what works. Also keep in mind I'm combining some spells so a few less spells known should be required.

    The mage will have the ability to swap out X amount of spells known on a rest (which is effectively what prepared spells are). The acolyte will have something similar. I think I'll swap the naturalist to spells known.
    Last edited by Kryx; 2018-04-04 at 01:31 AM.

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    "Umbral Weapon
    2 mana; concentration, 1 hour/mana
    As an action, a nonmagical weapon you touch becomes a magic weapon. For the duration, a shadowy afterimage trails behind the targeted weapon, potentially damaging foes even when the weapon misses. If the weapon misses a creature, it takes psychic damage equal to 2d4 + your spellcasting ability modifier."

    With Shadow Blade, you get a consolation prize for missing - half damage. Umbral Weapon you'll most likely do more damage on a miss than a hit. Is that right?

    "Alternatively, you can touch a quiver containing arrows or bolts. When a target is hit by ranged weapon attack using a piece of ammunition drawn from the quiver, the ammunition has the same shadowy afterimage. The spellís magic ends on a piece of ammunition after it hits or misses. "

    If the arrow misses, it doesn't have the afterimage, and therefore doesn't do damage on the miss?

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    Stoneskin.
    What do you think of an augment option to make it apply to magical b/p/s as well?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ugganaut View Post
    "Umbral Weapon
    2 mana; concentration, 1 hour/mana
    As an action, a nonmagical weapon you touch becomes a magic weapon. For the duration, a shadowy afterimage trails behind the targeted weapon, potentially damaging foes even when the weapon misses. If the weapon misses a creature, it takes psychic damage equal to 2d4 + your spellcasting ability modifier."

    With Shadow Blade, you get a consolation prize for missing - half damage. Umbral Weapon you'll most likely do more damage on a miss than a hit. Is that right?
    Average chance to hit is around 65% so the chance to miss is around 35%.
    Normal magical weapons add 1d4 to the damage of a weapon. .65*2.5 = 1.625
    Umbral weapon adds 2d4 + spellcasting on a miss. .35*(5+3) = 2.8. If I remove the spellcasting ability it'd be .35*5 = 1.75

    Hitting generally has many more benefits like rage, sneak attack, GWF, or other cases so hitting still wins out. I'm not fully happy with the implementation. I'll probably change it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ugganaut View Post
    "Alternatively, you can touch a quiver containing arrows or bolts. When a target is hit by ranged weapon attack using a piece of ammunition drawn from the quiver, the ammunition has the same shadowy afterimage. The spellís magic ends on a piece of ammunition after it hits or misses. "

    If the arrow misses, it doesn't have the afterimage, and therefore doesn't do damage on the miss?
    I'll update the wording here. Though as above I'm not fully happy with the implementation so I'll revisit it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ugganaut View Post
    Stoneskin.
    What do you think of an augment option to make it apply to magical b/p/s as well?
    Would probably be fine - magical weapons on monsters are rare anyways. Perhaps 1 more mana.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kryx View Post
    Hitting generally has many more benefits like rage, sneak attack, GWF, or other cases so hitting still wins out. I'm not fully happy with the implementation. I'll probably change it.
    There would be situations, like a full caster, where you're weapon will most likely be a staff or dagger. Admittedly you'd be better off using something like Shadow Blade, but any situation where the goal would be to get disadvantage and miss just seems wrong. See how the changes go.

    Will you add a Force theme?

    Was talking with my DM about the new spell themes, he really liked the idea. Looking forward to seeing the final product, great work as always :)

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