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    Pixie in the Playground
     
    BarbarianGuy

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    Default DMing a PC with Character Flaws

    How do some DM's out there treat Flaws? Do you make it come up a lot? Or let players get away with free feats? Or do you not use them at all?

    Im DMing tonight and one of my PCs is asking about flaws. He's a fully Melee character, so I told him he couldnt have the Shaky flaw, but I dont know how the others will really affect balance. Any input?

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    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    GreataxeFighterGuy

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    Default Re: DMing a PC with Character Flaws

    It's easier to determine if you can ask him to tell you what he intends to pick, assuming you allow him to do it, and then decide.

    I've always thought that anyone with a full BaB should automatically get power attack. And extra feats helps fighter-types get up to the strength level of casters. However, since fighter-types start out stronger at the beginning anyway, they don't really need to start the game with three feats.

    One idea for balance, would be to say "ok, you can start with two flaws, and no bonus feats. However, you'll get an extra bonus feat at level 5 (when wizards get fireball), and maybe at level 10 or something (just cuz it's a round number).

    That way, you give them the extra boost when they really need it, which is later on in the game, not at the beginning, where they're already stronger than the casters.

    Edit: Actually, fighters start to fall off to casters at around level 12 it seems like. So maybe, they get their first bonus feat at around level 10, and their next one at around 14.
    Last edited by Craig1f; 2008-01-23 at 03:08 PM.

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    AKA_Bait's Avatar

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    Default Re: DMing a PC with Character Flaws

    Generally, I disallow them. They strike me as ripe for abuse. Most of the flaws I've seen are pretty minor and the benifit if a free feat far outweighs the harm.

    Craig1f makes a point though. If they really want the flaw his suggestion is pretty good. Of course, it seems more reasonable to me not to have a mechanical flaw and just give the melee types at bonus feat at higher levels to keep things even regardless.
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    TheMeanDM's Avatar

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    Default Re: DMing a PC with Character Flaws

    If they have a flaw, EXPLOIT IT.

    Not, like, a ridiculous amount...but definitely make it apply in game situations.

    Someone wrote in a character background that they were afraid of bats.

    They didn't take it as a flaw (I don't allow them), but by golly, if I choose their character then they can expect to see some bats (or other winged creatures like them!).
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    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Kobold

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    Default Re: DMing a PC with Character Flaws

    Flaws have never come up in any game I've played in. I think my groups all mutually decided that flaws were a cheesy way to get extra feats so nobody bothered. We do roleplay with flaws though because it's fun. They just don't have a mechanical aspect.

    As a DM I'd allow flaws if they were interesting and if the player accepted that the flaw would come up in game. The character would need to endure some amount of suffering to get his feat. Hmm. I'd definitely consider giving the player the flaw right off the bat, but not granting a feat until the flaw had come up and made a difference in game (and would probably come up again later).
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    horseboy's Avatar

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    Default Re: DMing a PC with Character Flaws

    Quote Originally Posted by Craig1f View Post
    I've always thought that anyone with a full BaB should automatically get power attack. And extra feats helps fighter-types get up to the strength level of casters. However, since fighter-types start out stronger at the beginning anyway, they don't really need to start the game with three feats.
    You mean four feets, right?
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    Mewtarthio's Avatar

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    Default Re: DMing a PC with Character Flaws

    Quote Originally Posted by horseboy View Post
    You mean four feets, right?
    I don't really care about the feets. The important thing is that they've got two handses.

    *rimshot*
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    Default Re: DMing a PC with Character Flaws

    I wouldnt allow flaws... TO cheesy.
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    Behold_the_Void's Avatar

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    Default Re: DMing a PC with Character Flaws

    The problem I have with flaws is most of them aren't really that conducive to creating an interesting character. I far prefer Traits.


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    averagejoe's Avatar

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    Default Re: DMing a PC with Character Flaws

    Quote Originally Posted by Mewtarthio View Post
    I don't really care about the feets. The important thing is that they've got two handses.

    *rimshot*
    Unless they take a flaw that removes one of their handses in exchange for some extra feets.

    Don't recall if that one's in DnD, though. In general I'd dissuade you from using flaws, just because they are any minmaxer's best friend. Just tell your players that they can roleplay flaws if they want them that bad.


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    EvilElitest's Avatar

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    Default Re: DMing a PC with Character Flaws

    Is it possible to use non cheesy flaws, or do min maxers always take advantage of them
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    Alleine's Avatar

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    Default Re: DMing a PC with Character Flaws

    My group uses flaws. Its a nice way to get some extra feats to some of those feat starved classes, or get your character more to where you want them mechanically.

    They definitely CAN be cheesy though, I know some of my group cheese themselves out to the max with the help of flaws.
    There are definite downsides to flaws though. The ones on the SRD are usually pretty balanced, since all of those things come into play at some point.

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    Infinity_Biscuit's Avatar

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    Default Re: DMing a PC with Character Flaws

    Quote Originally Posted by EvilElitest View Post
    Is it possible to use non cheesy flaws, or do min maxers always take advantage of them
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    It's entirely possible to do it. I had one of my characters take Weak Willed so that he could have a -6 Will Save (because that's totally awesome) and took (I think) Great Fortitude for it.

    Then again, you also have my flatmate, who takes Inattentive and Shaky whenever given the chance...

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