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[Length of Combat] Which option(s) or hack do you use?

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  • [Length of Combat] Which option(s) or hack do you use?

    I've been doing simulations in preparation for my first game of FAGE. High armor makes combat really long. The goblins at 14DEF + Armor 3 are really annoying for beginning party of four with a mage and a rogue (low armor). It lasted 9 rounds. Which option of the FAGE Companion do you use? Did you create a personal hack? Thanks in advance for the help !
    marc c (also know as shesheyan on other forums)

  • #2
    I haven't actually used this in Fantasy AGE, but increasing the damage by 1d6 and only giving the CON-Bonus to Health comes close the pulpy mode of Modern AGE, with which I have made good experiences.

    But it's not exactly that, so take this with a grain of salt. The characters will have less Health per level and do and receive more damage than their Modern AGE counterpart. This is countered by a higher starting Health and better armor values in Fantasy AGE.

    To make it more in line, give 1 + CON Health per level and a flat +2 bonus to all damage from weapons.

    If you try it, let us know how it went.
    Last edited by mrkwnzl; 06-03-2019, 07:42 AM.
    My AGE Character Sheets: https://roninarmy.com/forum/dragon-age-rpg-age-system/modern-age/8450-age-fan-made-character-sheets

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    • #3
      Originally posted by mrkwnzl View Post
      I haven't actually used this in Fantasy AGE, but increasing the damage by 1d6 and only giving the CON-Bonus to Health comes close the pulpy mode of Modern AGE, with which I have made good experiences.

      But it's not exactly that, so take this with a grain of salt. The characters will have less Health per level and do and receive more damage than their Modern AGE counterpart. This is countered by a higher starting Health and better armor values in Fantasy AGE.

      To make it more in line, give 1 + CON Health per level and a flat +2 bonus to all damage from weapons.

      If you try it, let us know how it went.
      I tried that and it can create a lot of damage. My level 1 fighter with a two-handed sword could do 3d6 base+1d6 with the option +1d6 for a stunt +3 strength = 5d6 (17,5 average +3 = 20) ! An orc at 2d6+3 base +1d6 option +1d6 if it's a stunt = 4d6+3 (14 average +3 = 17). Not sure I would reduce PCs Health in such a context.
      Last edited by marc c; 06-03-2019, 08:02 AM.
      marc c (also know as shesheyan on other forums)

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      • #4
        I use the Minion rules in the FAGE Companion and assign some no-name creatures the SP ranks needed. So, in the case of your Goblins, I might make them 1SP Minions. This allows heroes to spend 1SP to take down one Goblin (or in some cases mow through six of them with 6SP).
        DT Butchino | Writer, Designer, Illustrator | Sketchpad Studio
        [url=http://www.rpgnow.com/browse.php?manufacturers_id=648]Get VILLAINOUS with the Acts of Villainy Line for M&M3e.[/url]

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        • #5
          One other thing I remembered. What level were the PCs in your test? The jump to level 2 is significant because of the Focus they get. It will most likely be spend on the main attack ability of the character. This +2 bonus is a huge boost in combat. Even so huge that I don't usually start at level 1. It will make Defense 14 of the Goblin much more manageable.
          My AGE Character Sheets: https://roninarmy.com/forum/dragon-age-rpg-age-system/modern-age/8450-age-fan-made-character-sheets

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          • #6
            We wanted a different feel from the usual 'cinematic' fantasy (and less focus on combat) so we reworked the Health:
            Health: Base + (3 x CON) + level
            -Warriors = 20 + (3 x CON) + level
            -Mages & Rogues = 15 + (3 x CON) + level
            * negative CON is only subtracted from base, not doubled and subtracted

            Adversary Health: Threat Base
            -Minor= 10 + (2 x CON)
            -Moderate= 20 + (3 x CON)
            -Major= 30 + (3 x CON)
            -Dire= 45 + (4 x CON)
            -Legendary= 60 + (4 x CON)

            Not as deadly as Warhammer or OpenQuest but combat can get people's attention. Originally we added focus bonus +1 to damage if available and tried 1d6+CON health every even level but it still didn't feel overly different from another fantasy rpg.

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            • #7
              What you can do to get a feel for the length of combat is pit one creature against a copy of itself. I made this spreadsheet a while ago to figure out combat pace - https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets...it?usp=sharing
              Pitting on goblin against another lasts on average 8.1 rounds. From my experience a balanced fight (50% of winning) should last about 5 rounds.

              In general I can off the following advice:

              1) Reduce Armor - Leather, 1AR; Mail, 2AR; Plate, 3AR
              In my value system 1 AR is equivalent to an extra 5 HP, so the FAGE Goblin has an equivalent of 30 HP. AR is really powerful and it warrants being nerfed that much. You could still have items with high AR, just know that +10AR heavy plate is the equivalent of +50HP.

              2) Define adversary threat by how many rounds it takes to take down and adjust stats accordingly.
              I use 2/3/4/5/6 rounds for minor/moderate/major/dire/legendary. This also makes it a relative scale as your PC's scale up, threat level may decrease. Versus a player with 2d6 damage and one +2 focus we can use the spreadsheet to adjust the goblin 2 ways.
              - We can remove the 3 AR and reduce its HP to 12 to get close to 2 rounds
              - We can keep the 3 AR but reduce its HP to 7 to get close to 2 rounds

              This works in reverse as well to gauge how powerful the PC's are in relation to adversaries, to know how many rounds your players will last as we have only dealt with adversary survivability. The goblin would last 2 rounds under attack, but if it has a 3d6 weapon the PC only last about 2 rounds as well. To balance this you would adjust the adversaries hit and damage to where the PC has a desired number of rounds. I would say this is similar to the idea of "gritty" hp rules in Modern AGE. As such a gritty fight versus a goblin (so that the PC has a greater >50% of winning) the PC should last 3 rounds. For a slightly easier battle go with 4 rounds (pulpy) and for story mode (cinematic) go with 5 rounds. The goblin's attack is already about 5 rounds compared to the PC (25 HP, 10 Def). In the relative sense a gritty fight the PC will have a 1 round advantage, a cinematic fight will have a 3 round advantage.
              [URL="http://herdingdice.tumblr.com/"]Herding Dice[/URL] - A tumblr where I put things about Adventure Game Engine design.

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              • #8
                Mdlthree, I just want to make sure I understand your advice. Lowering the AR would be sufficient to speed up combat? No need to houserule the damage and health?

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                • #9
                  I am thinking about introducing a modified "Gritty game mode" from Modern Age:

                  Characters get the usual Health of 1st level FAGE characters. Health is never increased, except by raising Con.

                  No Breathers.

                  First Aid gives 1 + Healer's Int of Health back.

                  A night's sleep recovers 5 plus Con Health.

                  Anybody ever tried something like that?

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by gabeprime View Post
                    Mdlthree, I just want to make sure I understand your advice. Lowering the AR would be sufficient to speed up combat? No need to houserule the damage and health?
                    TLDR; halving AR will help a lot, but I think there is a lot more room to improve. Half the AR and the HP for adversaries and increase PC damage by 1d6 is what I would recommend to modify published adversaries by

                    With my toy example (1v1 goblin vs basic PC) reducing the AR from 3 to 0 doubled the combat pace (10 rounds reduced to 5.7). Especially at low levels with lower damage output this does substantially improve the pace.

                    Going from 10 rounds to 5.7 though for a minor enemy isn't quite enough for me. That's why I also tinkered with HP values. Halving the HP also doubled the pace going from 10 to 4.6. Doing both brings it down from 10 rounds to 2.67 which is more inline with my guidelines of 2 rounds for a minor adversary.

                    With respect to increasing damage, I need to increase the PC damage from 2d6 to 3d6 to reduce the rounds from 10 to 5.3. You could also reduce defense from 14 to 10 and see a drop from 10 rounds to 4.5.

                    The FAGE Companion (pg 114) includes the strategy of halving HP and increasing damage by 1d6 as options. If you did both those things AND also halved AR, that brings Mr. Goblin from 10 rounds to 1.96, a nearly perfect number of rounds for a minor adversary.

                    Extra credit examples, do all three to:
                    • FAGE Ogre versus my PC, rounds drop from 14.3 to 3.77. Just about right for a moderate adversary.
                    • FAGE Manticore rounds drop from 112 to 7.47, good for a major adversary. Rounds are stupid high here because it has base of 6 AR which is basically untouchable for 2d7 (avg 7 dmg) attack.
                    [URL="http://herdingdice.tumblr.com/"]Herding Dice[/URL] - A tumblr where I put things about Adventure Game Engine design.

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                    • #11
                      Interesting options.

                      One thing I'm trying out with my solo adventure is fixed damage values. Instead of rolling the damage dice I use the average every time. For exemple 2d6+3 becomes 7+3=10. It shortens combat. It is also less time consuming than modify the creature's statistics. Some players might not like this because they went to tempt lady luck - and they love to roll dice. Personally I take the average every time instead of having a stupid character death because of a sting of low rolls.
                      marc c (also know as shesheyan on other forums)

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by marc c View Post
                        One thing I'm trying out with my solo adventure is fixed damage values. Instead of rolling the damage dice I use the average every time.
                        Someone posted similar rules i believe. That person averaged might blow to 4 and used the dragon die as a variation added to damage.
                        Have you tried something similar?

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                        • #13
                          I've used con-only health bonus from levels 4-10, but I don't think it's going to be sufficient past level 10. When my group starts up again I'm likely going to cut the con-bonus in half or maybe even try to switch to the new damage system in the modern age companion.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by AdamK1095 View Post
                            Someone posted similar rules i believe. That person averaged might blow to 4 and used the dragon die as a variation added to damage.
                            Have you tried something similar?
                            That was me. It really makes combat faster, specially if you use only one roll for attack/damage.

                            Here's the complete stuff.

                            [URL="http://roninarmy.com/threads/5902-AGE-DRAGON-AGE-STUFF-Characters-Creatures-etc-NEW-GENLOCK-NECROMANCER-amp-RISEN-OGRE"]My Dragon Age Thread: Characters, Organizations, Optional Rules, Items, Monsters and More[/URL]
                            [URL="http://roninarmy.com/threads/1589-Dragon-Ball-AGE"]My Dragon Ball conversion for AGE (incomplete)[/URL]
                            [URL="http://roninarmy.com/threads/1478-ICARUS-STUFF-MORE-PL-4-Archetypes-(Street-Fighter-Shotoclones)"]My M&M3E Builds[/URL]

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