Pity for Parry

Ask your True20 rules questions here, or answer questions from other True20 fans. And don't be surprised if you get official answers as well!
Locked
ChopSockey
Posts: 129
Joined: Wed Feb 07, 2007 11:36 am

Post by ChopSockey » Wed May 16, 2007 10:28 pm

mamelon wrote:I don't know if this helps much, but in my games I've been treating Shield as a separate kind of bonus, making three types. There's some overlap, which isn't much different than what has been described here. Wearing certain shields gives special bonus to Shield defense, where weapon enhancements apply to Parry.

Actually, I also had a type called Intercept, which involved catching or deflecting attacks manually. Of course, that's only really relevent for those with stuff like Deflect Arrows. In a sense, that involve alternate rules for how such attacks would be deflected. Intercept used Dex instead of Str.

Has anyone ever considered using something like a skills version of combat bonus? For instance, having ranks in Sword, or Shield, etc. Then you could have specific combat skills for Parry, Dodge, Shield, etc.
I love the idea of combat bonus being essentially just another skill, but I don't know how to do it without screwing the Warrior role out of it's niche (as well as messing with a few feats like attack focus).

I gather that by M&M paradigm, combat bonus is like 4 times as valuable as skill ranks, so I figure it would have to be busted up into at least "sub-skills". Melee, Ranged, Parry and Dodge maybe?

ValhallaGH
Posts: 1859
Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2006 11:05 pm
Location: Home of the Tigers
Contact:

Post by ValhallaGH » Thu May 17, 2007 5:54 am

ChopSockey wrote:I gather that by M&M paradigm, combat bonus is like 4 times as valuable as skill ranks, so I figure it would have to be busted up into at least "sub-skills". Melee, Ranged, Parry and Dodge maybe?
Actually, by M&M, Combat Bonus is sixteen times as valuable as a skill rank.
One point gets you four skill ranks, but it takes four points to get one combat bonus.

ChopSockey
Posts: 129
Joined: Wed Feb 07, 2007 11:36 am

Post by ChopSockey » Thu May 17, 2007 10:34 am

ValhallaGH wrote:
ChopSockey wrote:I gather that by M&M paradigm, combat bonus is like 4 times as valuable as skill ranks, so I figure it would have to be busted up into at least "sub-skills". Melee, Ranged, Parry and Dodge maybe?
Actually, by M&M, Combat Bonus is sixteen times as valuable as a skill rank.
One point gets you four skill ranks, but it takes four points to get one combat bonus.
Whoa! That's huge. Does that assume combat is sixteen times as frequent as any other skill use or type of challenge? Why is there such a premium on combat bonus?

ValhallaGH
Posts: 1859
Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2006 11:05 pm
Location: Home of the Tigers
Contact:

Post by ValhallaGH » Thu May 17, 2007 2:16 pm

ChopSockey wrote:Whoa! That's huge. Does that assume combat is sixteen times as frequent as any other skill use or type of challenge? Why is there such a premium on combat bonus?
Nope. It assumes that combat-related rolls are sixteen times more frequent than any particular skill check.
Which is a fair assumption.

You make a search check to find a trap. You don't find a trap. The trap finds you and rolls to hit your (combat based) defense. Then either the trap tries again to hit you, you try to hit the trap, or the trap in finished and alerts the dozen guards who come to investigate why this trap went off and subdue / kill the person that set it off.
1 skill roll, 1 to four combat rolls, plus another twenty or so combat rolls once the guards show up; and this is a fundamentally skill-based encounter.

Remember, Combat Bonus factors into a huge number of actions. Attacks and defense, obviously, along with wrestling, snatching falling objects/characters, assessing possible foes, and so on. More so, these actions are repeated, frequently, before success is (generally) achieved. Skills, on the other hand, are usually a success-failure result, giving us a single skill check to cover ten seconds to five hours of work versus a pair of combat actions (attack and defense) to cover a second or three of action.

While I usually see a large number of skills and skill rolls used each session, I've actually seen every skill on the sheet used in one session and I am often calling for skill checks, with the exception of Notice, no single skill gets used even one eighth as frequently as the attack bonus. Since combat adds to both attack and defense, it factors into the bad guys' side of that equation, bringing the ratio closer to 1:16, excepting the Notice skill.

rpgobjects_chuck
Posts: 100
Joined: Tue Nov 21, 2006 2:42 pm

Post by rpgobjects_chuck » Thu May 17, 2007 2:27 pm

Ive been following this thread with interest while doing the Blood and Fists conversion.

Just wanted to let people know there's a couple of new Parry wrinkles in my upcoming Blood and Fists book.

I have Parry Focus (ok, not rocket science... still) and another Weapon Bind-esque feat for Parry, Counterattack, for all you would-be counterpunchers out there.

I also did a similar feat for Dodge, Momentum Throw, that lets you make a free Trip attack when someone attacks and misses while you're using your Dodge bonus.

mamelon
Posts: 28
Joined: Mon Aug 21, 2006 10:54 pm

Post by mamelon » Thu May 17, 2007 10:06 pm

ChopSockey wrote:I love the idea of combat bonus being essentially just another skill, but I don't know how to do it without screwing the Warrior role out of it's niche (as well as messing with a few feats like attack focus).

I gather that by M&M paradigm, combat bonus is like 4 times as valuable as skill ranks, so I figure it would have to be busted up into at least "sub-skills". Melee, Ranged, Parry and Dodge maybe?
Oh, for sure. The way I had it arranged, there were about fourteen or fifteen different combat skills.

And as ValhallaGH points out, a point of combat bonus really should be worth more than a rank in a skill. I should point out, I don't mean treating combat progressions as normal skills that you can buy with skill points. No, I just made "combat skills" a separate category than normal skills. I'd like to think of a better name for them that doesn't involve the word "skill," which is somewhat confusing, but oh, well. Anyway, different roles have different capacity for combat skills, just as skills vary. Warriors get the most - about 10 combat skills (I figured a higher number was best, since I haven't allowed characters to add any ability score to combat skills known); Experts get 6 combat skills; Adepts get the least at 4 combat skills. You have ranks in a combat skill equal to your level +3, just as with powers and normal skills. Combat skills include Dodge, Parry, Shield, Intercept, and various weapon skills such as Light Swords, Two-handed Swords, Bows, Bludgeons, Whips, Unarmed, etc.

The biggest issue I see thus far is that most people see an adept's low combat modifier as part of the adept's balance. With my combat skills model, an adept can actually have a good combat bonus for some cases, such as Defense (by choosing Dodge) or with a weapon or two. So far it doesn't appear to be much of an issue, though i'll have to watch it. One of the combat skills is Esoteric Attack, which is attack bonus with attacks such as elemental Blasts. Most adepts would automatically choose Dodge for one and Esoteric Attack as another, leaving them two more. They could, therefore, be good at wielding two different kinds of weapons. Even then, most adepts have very low Strength and moderate Dexterity, and lack the combat feats to really improve their skills. And in any case, they still cannot compare to Warriors who not only can be good at just about any type of weapon and defense, but have access to specialized combat feats to further their prowess.

ChopSockey
Posts: 129
Joined: Wed Feb 07, 2007 11:36 am

Post by ChopSockey » Thu May 17, 2007 11:32 pm

Well since BCB is valued at 16 times that of skill ranks, I'd like it if it were busted into 4 Combat Proficiencies: Melee, Marksmanship, Dodge and Parry. Each Proficiency can be boosted by one per 4 skill ranks.

This, by the way, is in line with an idea about not having roles, and everybody gets a bunch of Skill Ranks (like 12 maybe) and Feat at every level to spread about as they see fit.

Incidently, how do Skill Ranks and Save Bonuses stack up to eachother?

ValhallaGH
Posts: 1859
Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2006 11:05 pm
Location: Home of the Tigers
Contact:

Post by ValhallaGH » Fri May 18, 2007 6:04 am

mamelon wrote:[Adepts]could, therefore, be good at wielding two different kinds of weapons. Even then, most adepts have very low Strength and moderate Dexterity, and lack the combat feats to really improve their skills. And in any case, they still cannot compare to Warriors who not only can be good at just about any type of weapon and defense, but have access to specialized combat feats to further their prowess.
None of which really matters if the adept's targeted elemental blast is hitting most rounds because he's just as good with it as the warrior is with his attack. Add in the fact that the adept's dodge skill is high enough that the warrior can miss and things get to looking quite messy for the warrior.
ChopSockey wrote:Incidently, how do Skill Ranks and Save Bonuses stack up to eachother?
One point for four skill ranks or one point for +1 to one save. So four to one, factoring in the specialization of selecting a single save or skill.

I thought I'd mentioned that earlier but it's no trouble to repeat myself.

P.S. Thank you for your complimentary comments in the other thread, ChopSockey.

Gomez
Posts: 11
Joined: Fri Mar 23, 2007 8:07 am

Post by Gomez » Fri May 18, 2007 6:25 am

In the Conan RPG shields give a parry bonus vs. Melee and a dodge bonus vs. ranged attacks.

ValhallaGH
Posts: 1859
Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2006 11:05 pm
Location: Home of the Tigers
Contact:

Post by ValhallaGH » Fri May 18, 2007 6:46 am

Gomez wrote:In the Conan RPG shields give a parry bonus vs. Melee and a dodge bonus vs. ranged attacks.
Which is how they are supposed to work in True20. It seems that the book didn't get that word before publication. ;)

mamelon
Posts: 28
Joined: Mon Aug 21, 2006 10:54 pm

Post by mamelon » Fri May 18, 2007 7:22 am

ValhallaGH wrote:None of which really matters if the adept's targeted elemental blast is hitting most rounds because he's just as good with it as the warrior is with his attack. Add in the fact that the adept's dodge skill is high enough that the warrior can miss and things get to looking quite messy for the warrior.
Why shouldn't an adept be able to hit with powers?

In d20, spellcasters are frequently very overpowered. However, none of their overpoweredness comes from their ability to hit with rays (which are touch attacks that easily connect with most d20 foes) and their ability to dodge attacks (it's not that hard to get you DC high in D&D, even for a wizard who can't wear armor). If you suggest that these would make ana dept outshadhow a warrior, I' have to disagree. On paper it might seem suspect, but based on observations from my games, saying that the adept steps on the warrior's toes in this way is extremely inaccurate.

Kuni
Posts: 308
Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2006 6:58 pm

Post by Kuni » Fri May 18, 2007 7:30 am

mamelon wrote:
ValhallaGH wrote:None of which really matters if the adept's targeted elemental blast is hitting most rounds because he's just as good with it as the warrior is with his attack. Add in the fact that the adept's dodge skill is high enough that the warrior can miss and things get to looking quite messy for the warrior.
Why shouldn't an adept be able to hit with powers?

In d20, spellcasters are frequently very overpowered. However, none of their overpoweredness comes from their ability to hit with rays (which are touch attacks that easily connect with most d20 foes) and their ability to dodge attacks (it's not that hard to get you DC high in D&D, even for a wizard who can't wear armor). If you suggest that these would make ana dept outshadhow a warrior, I' have to disagree. On paper it might seem suspect, but based on observations from my games, saying that the adept steps on the warrior's toes in this way is extremely inaccurate.
Actually, in d20, some of their overpoweredness DOES come from having rays with no saving throw and an almost guaranteed to-hit rolls. Split Empowered Rays of Enfeeblement, Enervation, and Scorching Ray are some of the nastier items in a properly built wizard's arsenal.

In True20, the obscene scales-by-level damage of an adept's Elemental Blast is "balanced" only by the fact that an Adept has a very hard time hitting a Warrior 's Defense, and that the Blast is fatiguing, preventing him from doing it as often as the warrior can swing his sword. Allowing the Adept to hit more often would exacerbate existing issues with Blast.

mamelon
Posts: 28
Joined: Mon Aug 21, 2006 10:54 pm

Post by mamelon » Fri May 18, 2007 7:35 am

Kuni wrote:Actually, in d20, some of their overpoweredness DOES come from having rays with no saving throw and an almost guaranteed to-hit rolls. Split Empowered Rays of Enfeeblement, Enervation, and Scorching Ray are some of the nastier items in a properly built wizard's arsenal.

In True20, the obscene scales-by-level damage of an adept's Elemental Blast is "balanced" only by the fact that an Adept has a very hard time hitting a Warrior 's Defense, and that the Blast is fatiguing, preventing him from doing it as often as the warrior can swing his sword. Allowing the Adept to hit more often would exacerbate existing issues with Blast.
In both of these cases, the real problem is with the power or spell being used, not the user's ability to hit with it. There's an argument about balance that claims that a spellcaster's often-too-strong spells are acceptable as long as the spellcaster is bogged down in enough disadvatages along the course of his or her career as a spellcaster - low hit points, little ability to wear armor, etc.
But I find that an indequate way to achieve balance. If Ray of Enfeeblement is too strong, the answer isn't to reduce the spellcaster's ability to hit with it, or to penalize them in other situations such as how easy they are to hit, but to reduce the effectiveness of the spell even when it does hit.
Similarly, I've also reduced the damage bonus of Blast powers considerably in my games. Frankly, I'd see merit in that anyway. Damage bonus equal to level is huge, and many people on this forum have already voiced reasonable concerns about it despite the adept's slow combat progression, which appears to have done little to hinder it.

And I recall that I did state, up front, that this idea might pose a problem to people who specifically wanted the adept to be balanced on poor defense and attack accuracy. I merely claim that in my games, this issue has not presented itself as a problem in practice.

On, and as an unrelated comment - about the value of combat bonus. If combat bonus is split into 10 or more different categories, then one rank in one of those categories becomes a good deal less valuable than one point of universal combat bonus is.

The Shadow
Posts: 1525
Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2005 12:49 pm
Location: Oregon, USA
Contact:

Post by The Shadow » Fri May 18, 2007 8:46 am

May I suggest that there's already a thread about fixing Elemental Blast, and that this isn't it?

Nor is it the thread for point-based True20.

iwatt
Posts: 1141
Joined: Wed Aug 09, 2006 1:31 pm
Location: Lugar de Condores

Post by iwatt » Fri May 18, 2007 9:02 am

rpgobjects_chuck wrote:I have Parry Focus (ok, not rocket science... still) and another Weapon Bind-esque feat for Parry, Counterattack, for all you would-be counterpunchers out there.

I also did a similar feat for Dodge, Momentum Throw, that lets you make a free Trip attack when someone attacks and misses while you're using your Dodge bonus.
Those seem interesting, and I can't wait to check them out.

A lot of the opinions based on parry seem tos tem from the same low opinion of Strength in True20. Personally, this all goes away when you allow a feat for strength to melee attacks, simialr to the one in the Companion (Brute Force). This meakes High Str, Low dex characters more effective, whith the added effect of making Parry users more common.

Locked