Author Topic: [3.75] Project Phoenix  (Read 8745 times)

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Kerrick

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Re: [3.75] Project Phoenix
« Reply #20 on: April 28, 2009, 06:02:28 AM »
Best to have both. That way you can create a distinguishable difference between free actions and actions that are quick enough to be done in addition to move/attack actions but still take a time investment.

And the only new action added to the economy is swift. One swift per round on top of your move, attack, and free actions. Immediate actions are a special type of swift action that can be used out of turn, but they still consume your swift action for the round.
Ah. Like I said, I'm not really familiar with swift/immediate actions. So we have (in terms of time) full-round action, standard and move action, swift action (basically a half-move action) and free action. Hmm... If I included swift actions, I could change combat step, counterspell, dodge... it has potential.


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If you're basing yourself on physical damage and you only have a 3/4 chance of hitting with your first attack, before any kind of miss chance or other defenses are applied, then your character is a poor point of balance. That's a character that can't do it's job. And if your character isn't based on physical damage (primarily skill role, ambush tactics, BFC) then it's still a poor point of balance for physical combat.
Yeah, my build was a bit underpowered in regards to damage output (sneak attacks aside), but I had a standard middle-BAB (30 levels of mid-BAB classes).

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This actually doesn't fix anything. It just makes full BAB and that fourth iterative less special. One less reason to take Fighter and it's ilk in epic games.
It fixes the "which class came first?" problem you get with L20+ characters. The oft-used example of this is the Ftr 20/Wiz 20 vs. the Wiz 20/Ftr 20. With this rule, there's no need to figure which order you take your classes and levels, which is the whole point. The increase in middle BAB was only a side effect, though a beneficial one. The 4th attack for mid- and low-BABs is still so low as to be a waste of time, but with the increased mobility built into the system (sacrificing attacks for movement), it's really moot.


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There's only two core Small races, and with being moved away from the base races page to see their details, it'd be nice to have all relevant information for any race represented directly on their stats page. It's just a copy/paste job, not like you have to actually retype it each time.
Yeah, I realized that too and fixed it.


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All sections. Especially in digital media (where it's so easy) I'm a big fan of user friendly redundancy of information. The less places I have to look for information to get the information I need to do a specific thing, the better.
So you're talking about if I mention concealment, I should also include the effects of concealment (or fear effects, or whatever)?

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While I disagree, even if that's the balance point you want for your game, why not just convert all bonuses into Intrinsic, External, and Internal? It's essentially the end goal of what you're doing anyway, and gets rid of the whole two tier system for bonuses.
You don't think there are too many bonuses? Hmm. Anyway, I got the idea from someone else and adapted it a bit, but after looking it over, it is a bit complex. I'll see what I can do with it.

BTW, this is why I need someone else to look over my work - my rules tend to lean toward the complex at first, until I look at them a few weeks or months later and say "WTF was I thinking when I wrote this?" and make it simpler and easier. :)

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To clarify:

"What is the point of adding these whole new categories when your point is to actually just eliminate certain stackings? Just rule either that "All X bonuses are now Y" (All Luck bonuses are Morale bonuses for example) or that "X and Y bonuses" don't stack(Luck and Morale don't stack for example). No need to make new groupings and categories and new exceptions. And the modifiers section break down is good, but you didn't even put in that section which of the three of your new types of modifier each is (even usually - Armor, for example, is listed as intrinsic under intrinsic, but the Armor Bonus section makes no mention of this)."
That would probably be the best way to go - cut down the number of bonuses, and limit which ones stack with which. Which was what I was attempting to do in the first place.

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As I get time I'll go over more and more.

And the difference in tone alone between this review and that one should say at least a little something to you. ;)
Heh, yeah. :)

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One new thing I will add now is that I'd really love to see fractional BAB/saves (you've got them up as variants currently) worked into the system to begin with. They make the most sense the way the rest is presented, and doing it from the start would allow for massive simplification and standardization. They really should have just been presented as the standard in the first place when it switched from 3.0 to 3.5, but old schoolers still couldn't bear to see multiclassing so encouraged, even though it's the core of flexibility and beauty in the 3.5 system.
I actually am using them for the monsters and such - I should just make it official, since this is a new system.
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EjoThims

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Re: [3.75] Project Phoenix
« Reply #21 on: April 28, 2009, 06:55:23 AM »
It fixes the "which class came first?" problem you get with L20+ characters.

A better fix is to say that the 'epic attack bonus' and your 'base attack bonus' are cumulative to determine iterative attacks but can never grant more than 4 (if going with current standards) total. I personally think that, for a full system fix, more attacks should come in the form of flurry style abilities from class levels, with BAB iteratives capping at 2-3.

So you're talking about if I mention concealment, I should also include the effects of concealment (or fear effects, or whatever)?

Essentially, at leas tin summary. If it's within the site's power (and your capabilities), mouse-over tooltips like what's used on Wowhead (scrolls down to the purple item links) and some ad sites would likely be best, imo.

This is also one of the things that annoys me with how the online SRDs are organized, though, so it's not specifically your project. ;)

You don't think there are too many bonuses?

I think that the number of bonuses doesn't really have any impact on any kind of balance within the game when from the get go it's so broken as to try to validly compare Fighter 20 and Cleric 20.

Kerrick

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Re: [3.75] Project Phoenix
« Reply #22 on: April 29, 2009, 05:03:16 PM »
A better fix is to say that the 'epic attack bonus' and your 'base attack bonus' are cumulative to determine iterative attacks but can never grant more than 4 (if going with current standards) total. I personally think that, for a full system fix, more attacks should come in the form of flurry style abilities from class levels, with BAB iteratives capping at 2-3.
Then you'd still run into the same problem. I don't really care if all the classes get 4 iteratives so much as I do about being able to make a L20+ PC more easily. I've already limited offhand attacks to 3 - Perfect TWF is gone, on the premise that you can never have more offhand attacks than primary attacks.

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Essentially, at leas tin summary. If it's within the site's power (and your capabilities), mouse-over tooltips like what's used on Wowhead (scrolls down to the purple item links) and some ad sites would likely be best, imo.
Oh. No, I can't do that on Wikidot. The best I can do is extensive hyperlinking like d20srd.org, and that's a huge amount of work.

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I think that the number of bonuses doesn't really have any impact on any kind of balance within the game when from the get go it's so broken as to try to validly compare Fighter 20 and Cleric 20.
Given that the extreme number of bonuses, and the stacking thereof, is part of the reason the cleric is so broken, I think it has a huge impact.

And speaking of bonuses, I tossed this idea out on another forum, where I discussed the original idea.

There are three types of modifiers: Intrinsic, enhancement, and circumstance.

Intrinsic modifiers are granted by a character's inherent abilities, or those of the items he uses, and are always extraordinary in nature. [Ability, armor, craft, natural armor, racial, resistance, shield, and size.]

Enhancement modifiers are granted because of the character's or creature's innate abilities, or the improvement thereof. [Competence, dodge, enhancement, insight, and morale.]

Circumstance modifiers are granted by an outside source and are usually temporary. [Circumstance, deflection, and luck.]

Under this system, intrinsic modifiers, no matter the source, always stack; enhancement and circumstance modifiers overlap another bonus of the same type, but stack with each other and intrinsic modifiers.

Under the 3.5 rules, a rogue with 17 Dex wearing leather armor, a buckler, an amulet of natural armor +2, and a ring of protection +1 with the Dodge feat and under the effects of a prayer spell would have:

AC 20/21 (+3 Dex, +2 armor, +1 shield, +2 natural, +1 deflection, +1 dodge* +1 luck) *Counting the Dodge feat.

Under this new system, it would be:

AC 20 (+8 intrinsic, +1 enhancement*, +1 circumstance) *Counting the Dodge feat

The only major problem I can see is that the new system doesn't show the math - you can't tell where all those modifiers are coming from. It is a lot easier, though; with only three modifiers, you can easily tell what stacks with what, and it takes up a lot less text.
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SiggyDevil

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Re: [3.75] Project Phoenix
« Reply #23 on: April 30, 2009, 07:51:05 AM »
Fewest number of bonus types possible, each not stacking with their own but always with each other.

Then, regulate which classes gets what type of bonus (magic for casters, physical for warriors) and in which amounts.

No more of this Deflection crap coming from items. It you wear an item, it either reduces damage you take (DR) or makes you harder to hit (AC), as coming from an item source.
Just because a defense bonus is described as;
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Deflection Bonus: Magical deflection effects ward off attacks and improve your AC.
.. doesn't validate any FURTHER stacking on top of body armor, parrying, scales, and so on.

Also, Pathfinder was indeed a shit twinkie. I wash my hands of it even while I never bothered to set things right over there at Paizo. ... although the art is at times decent.

EjoThims

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Re: [3.75] Project Phoenix
« Reply #24 on: April 30, 2009, 12:29:00 PM »
Then you'd still run into the same problem. I don't really care if all the classes get 4 iteratives so much as I do about being able to make a L20+ PC more easily.

So your only concern in changing how epic attack bonus works is that order of taking classes doesn't matter? I hope you're changing the x4 skill points and full HP at level one as well then. ;)

I've already limited offhand attacks to 3 - Perfect TWF is gone, on the premise that you can never have more offhand attacks than primary attacks.

PWF only allows more offhand attack than primaries when you use abuses like in my 1.6 million attacks in one action build (linked in my sig). Otherwise all it does is set your off-hand attacks equal to your main-hand. And even without PWF, it's super easy to get more off-hand attacks than main-hand attacks, you just need more than two arms. PWF (with a no doublings clause) is what TWF needs pre-epic to achieve balance; it shouldn't be taken away.

Oh. No, I can't do that on Wikidot.

A shame. I'd suggest brief summary copy/paste work then. A pain, I know (trust me), but even in my own works, I vastly prefer the redundancy.

Given that the extreme number of bonuses, and the stacking thereof, is part of the reason the cleric is so broken

False. Bonuses and access to them is only the reason the Cleric is a better fighter than the Fighter is. 9th level spells is why a Cleric is broken, and even with bonus changes, Clerics (and Wizards and Druids and etc) will all still be broken as long as spellcasting works the way it does. This problem includes (but is not limited to) spells as access to a better action economy, spells as better BFC, SoD/SoS, and spells like Wish/Shapechange/Gate.

And speaking of bonuses, I tossed this idea out on another forum, where I discussed the original idea.

Other than naming, I don't see what's different with the new idea? It's still a new tier with it's own exceptions and causes just as much complication as before. It would be far better to either outright state that "X and Y" bonus types no longer stack (such as saying "Dodge and Deflection no longer stack" for example) or consolidating bonuses (all Deflection bonuses are now Armor bonuses, for example).

I still disagree that bonuses are at all an issue. Access to them is, yes, especially when those with the easiest access to miscellaneous bonuses are the ones who are already most powerful (spellcasters), but that's a problem of limiting access, not type or stacking.

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Re: [3.75] Project Phoenix
« Reply #25 on: April 30, 2009, 05:03:01 PM »
Fewest number of bonus types possible, each not stacking with their own but always with each other.

Then, regulate which classes gets what type of bonus (magic for casters, physical for warriors) and in which amounts.
So you're saying go back to the original bonus system, but limit when and where they're applied?

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Also, Pathfinder was indeed a shit twinkie. I wash my hands of it even while I never bothered to set things right over there at Paizo. ... although the art is at times decent.
I thought the art was the worst part of it - too anime-ish. There were a few decent pieces, but on the whole, it looked like a BESM comic book.
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Kerrick

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Re: [3.75] Project Phoenix
« Reply #26 on: April 30, 2009, 05:21:47 PM »
Gods, what I wouldn't do for Multiquote...

So your only concern in changing how epic attack bonus works is that order of taking classes doesn't matter? I hope you're changing the x4 skill points and full HP at level one as well then. ;)
Skill points, yes. I'm doing the 1:1 system from Pathfinder (I came up with it first, but they refined it). Hit points? No. Taking barbarian instead of mage a big difference at L1, but not so much by L5-6.

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PWF only allows more offhand attack than primaries when you use abuses like in my 1.6 million attacks in one action build (linked in my sig). Otherwise all it does is set your off-hand attacks equal to your main-hand.
I know, and what I meant was that I wanted to keep offhand attacks less than the primary - so if you have 4 primary attacks, you can never get more than 3 off hand. It's intended to reduce dice rolling and ridiculous damage output.

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And even without PWF, it's super easy to get more off-hand attacks than main-hand attacks, you just need more than two arms.
Not if you require the creature to take multiple TWF feats for each arm. Think about it - a marilith can take 3 feats to gain 24 attacks per round. Is that balanced to you?

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A shame. I'd suggest brief summary copy/paste work then. A pain, I know (trust me), but even in my own works, I vastly prefer the redundancy.
I'll look into it. I really should do it for minor stuff like the conditions.

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False. Bonuses and access to them is only the reason the Cleric is a better fighter than the Fighter is.
Oh come on - that's part of the reason they're broken. Let's not argue semantics here. :)

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9th level spells is why a Cleric is broken, and even with bonus changes, Clerics (and Wizards and Druids and etc) will all still be broken as long as spellcasting works the way it does. This problem includes (but is not limited to) spells as access to a better action economy, spells as better BFC, SoD/SoS, and spells like Wish/Shapechange/Gate.
True, very true. But I've taken care of those, too; gate is now just a greater plane shift (no calling), shapechange (and all the polymorph spells) are limited by CR instead of HD; the symbols aren't that broken - they affect 150 hit points, take 10 minutes to cast, AND they allow a save. I'm not sure what BFC is, though.  ??? Wish/miracle got bumped up to L10 (I have rules for 10th+ level spells) and were nerfed slightly, I think.

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Other than naming, I don't see what's different with the new idea? It's still a new tier with it's own exceptions and causes just as much complication as before.
I can see where it would be confusing, but there are three bonuses. Period. All the stuff listed in brackets is how the old bonuses would convert over.

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It would be far better to either outright state that "X and Y" bonus types no longer stack (such as saying "Dodge and Deflection no longer stack" for example) or consolidating bonuses (all Deflection bonuses are now Armor bonuses, for example).
Yeah. I've already consolidated as much as I'd really like, but making a few more restrictions like you noted above would probably be easiest.

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I still disagree that bonuses are at all an issue. Access to them is, yes, especially when those with the easiest access to miscellaneous bonuses are the ones who are already most powerful (spellcasters), but that's a problem of limiting access, not type or stacking.
If it's out there, someone will find a way to gain access to it - all you have to do is create a spell/feat/PrC. If you say "You can't do that" (deflection and dodge don't stack, e.g.), it gives more support for the DM who wants to limit his players' power, and he can easily house rule it away if he wants. I realize it's a fine balancing act; some DMs feel constrained by the rules and can't house rule something away, but the majority should feel comfortable changing the rules to fit their group and their campaign, as long as it's not too much work.
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SiggyDevil

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Re: [3.75] Project Phoenix
« Reply #27 on: April 30, 2009, 08:57:41 PM »
So you're saying go back to the original bonus system, but limit when and where they're applied?

I don't know which original you mean specifically, 3.5 'vanilla' perhaps, but I mean no more than 6-7 total.
Concise, etc.

Your concept of Intrinsic, I/E, and so on would be a match, but only in the sense that they are broader groups.


All bonuses coming from magic items would usually not stack with spells.
They would be Magic bonus if they create a spell buff, Item bonus for constant enhancement.

Race/Racial bonus would be a catchall for anything coming from... well... race.

Level bonus would be for anything you don't want stacking between classes.
Example: most of the base save bonus. Skills go here.
Class bonus would be for that little extra gained from multiclassing on top of Level bonus.
Example: a small portion of each save bonus, varies by class.

Other exotic and often temporary bonuses are up for debate. Names vary but I've found common themes:
• Time
• Speed
• Circumstance
• Situation
• Position

Kerrick

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Re: [3.75] Project Phoenix
« Reply #28 on: May 01, 2009, 03:22:45 AM »
I meant the vanilla 3.5 bonuses, yes. I was thinking about this at work, and having deflection and armor overlap seems like a good idea. It might piss off a lot of players, but eh. :P If they want to change it, they can house rule it back. This change would enable me to make mage armor and bracers of armor into a deflection bonus (which is what they should be - it's FORCE). I've already changed all the divine (profane/sacred) bonuses to deflection, so this would be a good nerf for the cleric. As far as the other bonuses, luck can go away - it's the same as circumstance. This would leave us with...

Ability, armor, circumstance, competence, craft, deflection, dodge, enhancement, insight, morale, natural, racial, resistance, shield, and size. That's still a lot of bonuses, but armor, deflection, dodge, natural, and shield apply only to AC, racial is applied only once (when you make the PC), and size is rarely applied at all, unless you happen to be Small or Large or use a lot of shapechanging magics. Craft only applies if you use the mastercrafting system.

That leaves us with 8 bonus types. Of those, insight is extremely rare (usually applied to monsters), though still useful, so 7 commonly-used bonuses. That should be good, eh?
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EjoThims

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Re: [3.75] Project Phoenix
« Reply #29 on: May 01, 2009, 04:08:42 AM »
Gods, what I wouldn't do for Multiquote...

I just open the quote based posts in multiple tabs and then splice them together with copy/paste. :D

Skill points, yes. I'm doing the 1:1 system from Pathfinder (I came up with it first, but they refined it).

Hadn't gotten there yet, bsuy with work. lol

Hit points? No. Taking barbarian instead of mage a big difference at L1, but not so much by L5-6.

Then we've got some philosophical differences, as I believe that if it ever matters (even for prebuilt at high levels) what order you take classes in, it should always matter. I'll try to keep it in mind when I offer alternatives, but it still feels very clunky to me, though that's likely a side affect of the epic attack bonus in the first place.

I know, and what I meant was that I wanted to keep offhand attacks less than the primary - so if you have 4 primary attacks, you can never get more than 3 off hand. It's intended to reduce dice rolling and ridiculous damage output.

Then just make GTWF into PWF with a -1 clause. So that it gives the same standard affect, but characters that focus on multiple weaker attacks still have a viable way of giving themselves a competitive average (they don't currently without PTWF).

Not if you require the creature to take multiple TWF feats for each arm. Think about it - a marilith can take 3 feats to gain 24 attacks per round. Is that balanced to you?

It's a lot more balanced than requiring them to take 15 feats for the same affect, especially when a one armed creature holding one two-handed weapon is still likely to do more damage and that marilith has a massive ECL. Now, spellcasters can make abuses of this, but again, that's because spell casters are broken, not because MWF is.

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False. Bonuses and access to them is only the reason the Cleric is a better fighter than the Fighter is.
Oh come on - that's part of the reason they're broken. Let's not argue semantics here. :)

I'm not. I genuinely don't think that Clerics being better Fighters than Fighters is why they're broken, I think it's a result of how broken they are. Even if you removed every stacking bonus in the game, Druids and Clerics and Wizards would still be able to out fight a Fighter.

BFC is, though.

Battlefield Control.

I can see where it would be confusing, but there are three bonuses. Period. All the stuff listed in brackets is how the old bonuses would convert over.

Yeah. I've already consolidated as much as I'd really like, but making a few more restrictions like you noted above would probably be easiest.

Ah, I see. I was thinking the other bonuses were still existing and still categorized as a higher tier type as well, where instead you simply convert hem all to the new type (which was one of my suggestions, so we're roughly on the same page after all).

If it's out there, someone will find a way to gain access to it - all you have to do is create a spell/feat/PrC. If you say "You can't do that" (deflection and dodge don't stack, e.g.), it gives more support for the DM who wants to limit his players' power, and he can easily house rule it away if he wants. I realize it's a fine balancing act; some DMs feel constrained by the rules and can't house rule something away, but the majority should feel comfortable changing the rules to fit their group and their campaign, as long as it's not too much work.

New PrCs/Feats/Spells are under DM control as well. To me, the point of the 3.5 system was pre-DM player flexibility in character presentation. Having a wider base with more restricted access and saying "The DM can tighten it further as needed" seems to fit into that design better than a thinner base with easier access and saying "The DM can loosen it further as needed."

And I swear I'm moving on to review other things as well, finally got some days off. :D

SiggyDevil

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Re: [3.75] Project Phoenix
« Reply #30 on: May 01, 2009, 05:43:29 AM »
7-8 is good.
You should provide Insight as by divination applied to combat, research on a dangerous encounter put to good use, and of course certain precognitive abilities (example: Foresight), not just for monsters.

EjoThims

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Re: [3.75] Project Phoenix
« Reply #31 on: May 01, 2009, 05:56:40 AM »
For a brief overview of the rest:

I like the changes to the basic skill system, especially as it simplifies level 1 and the rank cap. I can't find any information on cross-class skills though, just that class skills get the +3 bonus. I'd personally leave CC at 1/2 max rank, but not costing extra (or vice versa).

If you are going to leave Divine Feats as not allowing other turning to count towards the prereq of taking them, make sure you specify that other turning also cannot be used to power them. As it reads now, as long as you can turn/rebuke Undead to take a Divine Feat, you can use other types of turning/rebuking to power your Divine Feats.

I like the changes to max dex. I think you should decide off the bat whether you want max dex to limit armor contribution from alternate abilities though (wisdom, con, cha) for example, and either state directly that it doesn't, or change it so that it imposes a penalty to all ability scores that contribute to armor.

The EU stuff is way too complicated when we're already worrying about sheer weight, however. It really is a wholly unneeded addition.

I'd suggest either moving massive damage to a variant rule or making the threshold for it scale off of Con. It doesn't make sense that a hit that could nearly outright kill a low Con, low hd target anyway can also be massive damage on a high con, high hd target that the actual numeric value of it would barely scratch.

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Re: [3.75] Project Phoenix
« Reply #32 on: May 01, 2009, 05:39:27 PM »
I just open the quote based posts in multiple tabs and then splice them together with copy/paste. :D
Heh. That works.

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Then we've got some philosophical differences, as I believe that if it ever matters (even for prebuilt at high levels) what order you take classes in, it should always matter. I'll try to keep it in mind when I offer alternatives, but it still feels very clunky to me, though that's likely a side affect of the epic attack bonus in the first place.
See, it shouldn't matter, ever. That's what I want to do - make it completely unimportant, so that players don't have to worry about stupid things like that.

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Then just make GTWF into PWF with a -1 clause. So that it gives the same standard affect, but characters that focus on multiple weaker attacks still have a viable way of giving themselves a competitive average (they don't currently without PTWF).
A -1 clause?

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It's a lot more balanced than requiring them to take 15 feats for the same affect, especially when a one armed creature holding one two-handed weapon is still likely to do more damage and that marilith has a massive ECL. Now, spellcasters can make abuses of this, but again, that's because spell casters are broken, not because MWF is.
Let's leave out feats (and spells and whatever) from non-core sources for the time being. I can't account for all that.

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I'm not. I genuinely don't think that Clerics being better Fighters than Fighters is why they're broken, I think it's a result of how broken they are. Even if you removed every stacking bonus in the game, Druids and Clerics and Wizards would still be able to out fight a Fighter.
After thinking about this, I think I understand what you're saying - the fact that clerics are better fighters than fighters is simply a result of all the things they get. They have mid-BAB, d8 HD, heavy armor, a moderate weapon selection, and spells. None of these alone would be enough to push them over, but all of them... yeah. Monks get 3 of those, and rogues have only two, which is why they're not nearly as effective in combat. If we reduce the cleric's armor to medium and nerf some of the spells, I think it will strike the balance of keeping them effective in combat without being able to overpower the fighter. (Oh, and fighters also get a boost.) The problem with druids is their wildshape. I've taken care of that also.

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Battlefield Control.
Ah. That goes back to spells. Fighters now have some maneuvers and a lot more feats that enable them to control their enemies, though not nearly so much as 4E (and I'm not going that far).

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Ah, I see. I was thinking the other bonuses were still existing and still categorized as a higher tier type as well, where instead you simply convert hem all to the new type (which was one of my suggestions, so we're roughly on the same page after all).
Yeah. I decided to go back to the original (vanilla) bonus system and just trim it down a bit - it's less of an overall change.

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New PrCs/Feats/Spells are under DM control as well. To me, the point of the 3.5 system was pre-DM player flexibility in character presentation. Having a wider base with more restricted access and saying "The DM can tighten it further as needed" seems to fit into that design better than a thinner base with easier access and saying "The DM can loosen it further as needed."
Yeah... my system does provide a lot more options. I'll think on this.

7-8 is good.
You should provide Insight as by divination applied to combat, research on a dangerous encounter put to good use, and of course certain precognitive abilities (example: Foresight), not just for monsters.
Oh, I do. I said it's mostly for monsters, but there are still spells and abilities for PCs that provide it, like foresight.
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Kerrick

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Re: [3.75] Project Phoenix
« Reply #33 on: May 01, 2009, 05:46:49 PM »
I like the changes to the basic skill system, especially as it simplifies level 1 and the rank cap. I can't find any information on cross-class skills though, just that class skills get the +3 bonus. I'd personally leave CC at 1/2 max rank, but not costing extra (or vice versa).
Oops. I thought I'd mentioned that somewhere. Cross-class skills simply don't get the +3 trained bonus. This makes it a lot easier to handle skills, and everyone can be somewhat effective at things like Perception, instead of just the rogue.

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If you are going to leave Divine Feats as not allowing other turning to count towards the prereq of taking them, make sure you specify that other turning also cannot be used to power them. As it reads now, as long as you can turn/rebuke Undead to take a Divine Feat, you can use other types of turning/rebuking to power your Divine Feats.
Ooh, good catch. I'll have to fix that.

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I like the changes to max dex. I think you should decide off the bat whether you want max dex to limit armor contribution from alternate abilities though (wisdom, con, cha) for example, and either state directly that it doesn't, or change it so that it imposes a penalty to all ability scores that contribute to armor.
The monkish Wis bonus is now an insight bonus (there ya go, siggy!), so no worries there. I'm not sure that alternate abilities like that would be a big deal; they're extremely rare (the monk's the only one I know of, outside of custom classes).

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The EU stuff is way too complicated when we're already worrying about sheer weight, however. It really is a wholly unneeded addition.
It's just an optional variant, and it's really just for figuring out how much crap you can cram into that bag.

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I'd suggest either moving massive damage to a variant rule or making the threshold for it scale off of Con. It doesn't make sense that a hit that could nearly outright kill a low Con, low hd target anyway can also be massive damage on a high con, high hd target that the actual numeric value of it would barely scratch.
Yeah, good idea. Maybe massive damage = 3 times Con score?[/quote]
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EjoThims

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Re: [3.75] Project Phoenix
« Reply #34 on: May 02, 2009, 12:55:47 PM »
See, it shouldn't matter, ever. That's what I want to do - make it completely unimportant, so that players don't have to worry about stupid things like that.

I agree, I just don't think you can feasibly get rid of everything that makes it matter without drastically shifting how the game plays in actually progressed play. Like skill and feat prereqs for PrCs, for example.

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Then just make GTWF into PWF with a -1 clause. So that it gives the same standard affect, but characters that focus on multiple weaker attacks still have a viable way of giving themselves a competitive average (they don't currently without PTWF).
A -1 clause?

"as many attacks as you make with your mainhand minus one." So flurry and swift rage and other boosts would still also increase offhand attacks, but you'd always make one less offhand attack than mainhand.

Let's leave out feats (and spells and whatever) from non-core sources for the time being. I can't account for all that.

I was. Core is where 90% of the most broken material rests. And without SA, a Marilith or other MWFer is still going to be outdamaged most of the time by a Barbarian with PA, even in Core. And that's with the Marilith costing so much to play (though again, spellcasters bypass those costs).

After thinking about this, I think I understand what you're saying - the fact that clerics are better fighters than fighters is simply a result of all the things they get. They have mid-BAB, d8 HD, heavy armor, a moderate weapon selection, and spells. None of these alone would be enough to push them over, but all of them... yeah. Monks get 3 of those, and rogues have only two, which is why they're not nearly as effective in combat. If we reduce the cleric's armor to medium and nerf some of the spells, I think it will strike the balance of keeping them effective in combat without being able to overpower the fighter. (Oh, and fighters also get a boost.) The problem with druids is their wildshape. I've taken care of that also.

I think the biggest problem is the low power of the Fighters (even Bards can be better fighters than them with the right tweaks), with the second biggest problem being what spells can do. Armor and HD and BAB is just icing on the cake after that. I've not yet given your class reviews a go over, but I'll add them (and the rest of the project) to my Rewrite Compilation, and it's a good source of further inspiration for other classes and feats, especially with some of the non-core material compiled there. Included (and in my sig under Verold) are my own takes on fixes for many of the base classes and feats.

Ah. That goes back to spells. Fighters now have some maneuvers and a lot more feats that enable them to control their enemies, though not nearly so much as 4E (and I'm not going that far).

This is the biggest reason I think you really should include swift and immediate actions, they allow combat maneuvers to not take up other more important spaces in the action economy. I'd suggest Parry, Dodge, and Counterspell as Immediate, and Disarm, Trip, Bull Rush, and Overrun as swift (with feats like Improved Trip allowing their use as attack actions as well since they then no longer eat up actions).

I'm not sure that alternate abilities like that would be a big deal; they're extremely rare (the monk's the only one I know of, outside of custom classes).

Deepwarden is the big one, replacing Dex with Con. By RaW, it's not limited by Max Dex, but if you'd like to change that, it's something that should probably be addressed here. The ghost's ability to use Cha for armor is another example.

It's just an optional variant, and it's really just for figuring out how much crap you can cram into that bag.

Ah, I missed the variant part.

Yeah, good idea. Maybe massive damage = 3 times Con score?

That would actually lower the threshold for most characters, so I'd suggest something like 40+Con score if you want the average to be about the same and a lower scaling, or 5 times Con if you want the average to be the same and a higher scaling. Personally, I'd just move it to a variant rule and present all three options.

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Re: [3.75] Project Phoenix
« Reply #35 on: May 02, 2009, 06:07:52 PM »
I agree, I just don't think you can feasibly get rid of everything that makes it matter without drastically shifting how the game plays in actually progressed play. Like skill and feat prereqs for PrCs, for example.
I'm not following. The new skill system drastically changes prereqs anyway, and really makes that point moot - since everyone can take a rank in any skill for 1 skill point, it still makes order of classes superfluous. And, yes, I had to account for that by boosting some of the prereqs.

"as many attacks as you make with your mainhand minus one." So flurry and swift rage and other boosts would still also increase offhand attacks, but you'd always make one less offhand attack than mainhand.
I thought that's what you meant, but I wasn't sure. Flurry doesn't account for offhand attacks - it uses both hands equally. I'm not sure what swift rage is. But really, my intent is to put a hard cap on the number of attacks per round: 4 with the main hand, and 3 with the off hand. This limits the amount of dice rolling in combat, and keeps combat flowing. That's a very common complaint among 3.5 gamers - combat drags, and high-level combats can take hours. I've seen this myself; in our epic campaign, a fight that lasted 4-5 rounds could take upwards of an hour.

I was. Core is where 90% of the most broken material rests. And without SA, a Marilith or other MWFer is still going to be outdamaged most of the time by a Barbarian with PA, even in Core. And that's with the Marilith costing so much to play (though again, spellcasters bypass those costs).
Oh, my fault - I thought you were referring to Monkey Grip (which is a hideously broken feat). Marilith don't have a listed LA, so I can't really say what their ECL is (though according to UK's rules, it's 17). You forget, too, that marilith also have PA and a high BAB, AND they're wielding large longswords (2d6+9), so they're easily a match for a barbarian 17 with a greatsword, damage-wise, since they have nine attacks (99 avg damage) vs. the barbarian's four (64). If we give the marilith those three feats, her damage output jumps to 64 * 6 = 384 points per round, assuming all her attacks hit. I've seen a character equal that, but he was an epic barbarian/legendary dreadnought (our epic campaign). Course, you'd have to advance the marilith 9 HD to get those feats, so she'd have 25, so it's close.

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I think the biggest problem is the low power of the Fighters (even Bards can be better fighters than them with the right tweaks), with the second biggest problem being what spells can do. Armor and HD and BAB is just icing on the cake after that.
Agreed. Fighters get nothing but feats, and that's a poor substitute for actual class abilities.

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I've not yet given your class reviews a go over, but I'll add them (and the rest of the project) to my Rewrite Compilation, and it's a good source of further inspiration for other classes and feats, especially with some of the non-core material compiled there. Included (and in my sig under Verold) are my own takes on fixes for many of the base classes and feats.
Cool, I'll check that out.

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This is the biggest reason I think you really should include swift and immediate actions, they allow combat maneuvers to not take up other more important spaces in the action economy. I'd suggest Parry, Dodge, and Counterspell as Immediate, and Disarm, Trip, Bull Rush, and Overrun as swift (with feats like Improved Trip allowing their use as attack actions as well since they then no longer eat up actions).
I'm going to include swift actions, and make immediate actions a special form of swift action (it won't be called an "immediate action", just "a swift action that you can use any time"; I was looking over the new spells I'd posted a couple weeks ago, and I found I already had that. :D ). Disarm and trip are already attack actions. I'm not sure I'd make bull rush a swift action, though... it requires a "build-up" of sorts, especially if you're pushing someone back more than 5 feet. If it were a swift action, you could have PCs bull rushing someone halfway across the map and still being able to make a full move or get a full attack. Overrun, however, should be a free or swift action, since it's taking place during the move. I'll fix that.

While we're speaking of combat actions, what do you think of the grapple rules and the opposed check? I borrowed the check system from Pathfinder Alpha, before they went to the CMB.

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Deepwarden is the big one, replacing Dex with Con. By RaW, it's not limited by Max Dex, but if you'd like to change that, it's something that should probably be addressed here. The ghost's ability to use Cha for armor is another example.
Well... if we make deflection and armor not stack, it renders the latter point moot. As far as monks go, the Wis bonus applies only if they're not wearing armor; I assume this is how the Deepwarden works?

It's just an optional variant, and it's really just for figuring out how much crap you can cram into that bag.

Ah, I missed the variant part.[/quote] [/quote]
Well, it doesn't say "optional" or "variant", but since most DMs hand-wave encumbrance anyway, I just considered it as such.

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That would actually lower the threshold for most characters, so I'd suggest something like 40+Con score if you want the average to be about the same and a lower scaling, or 5 times Con if you want the average to be the same and a higher scaling. Personally, I'd just move it to a variant rule and present all three options.
I never much cared for massive damage rules, myself. I'll just make it a variant with the three options.
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Re: [3.75] Project Phoenix
« Reply #36 on: May 03, 2009, 01:12:59 PM »
I agree, I just don't think you can feasibly get rid of everything that makes it matter without drastically shifting how the game plays in actually progressed play. Like skill and feat prereqs for PrCs, for example.
I'm not following. The new skill system drastically changes prereqs anyway, and really makes that point moot - since everyone can take a rank in any skill for 1 skill point, it still makes order of classes superfluous. And, yes, I had to account for that by boosting some of the prereqs.

Skills probably weren't the best example, but BAB, saves, feats and HP still cause class order to matter as you're building up classes, so the order will still matter when making a higher level character.

Flurry doesn't account for offhand attacks - it uses both hands equally.

While true ideally, mechanically it is false. Flurry attacks are mainhand attacks (they use mainhand modifiers and damage) and using a flurry action does not limit you from making offhand attacks.

I'm not sure what swift rage is.

Flurry style rage variant.

But really, my intent is to put a hard cap on the number of attacks per round: 4 with the main hand, and 3 with the off hand.

Then you should take steps to either increase the power of TWF vs Two handed weapons, or you should lower the feat investment of TWF, probably down to one feat, two at the most.

Oh, my fault - I thought you were referring to Monkey Grip (which is a hideously broken feat).

If by 'hideously broken' you mean 'hideously underpowered and the biggest trap in the world,' then yes. It's (on average) a net gain of 3.5 damage per attack and it doesn't stack with a lot of other similar abilities that are more cost effective.

Course, you'd have to advance the marilith 9 HD to get those feats, so she'd have 25, so it's close.

And that's with much less HD and options, plus the cost of enchanting more weapons, plus lower returns on Str boosts with continued optimization, which, no offense, was lacking if a level 25 Barbarian couldn't dish out more than 400 damage per round post epic.

Disarm and trip are already attack actions.

And I'm suggesting that, if you'd like to make them viable, you make them into swift actions instead, with the improved versions of each allowing you to make them as attack actions in the improved trip style in addition as a secondary option. For example:

[spoiler]Improved Disarm [General]: You are able to disarm your opponents with a flourish, never interrupting your own rhythm.
Prerequisite: Int 13, Combat Expertise.
Benefit: You do not provoke an attack of opportunity when you attempt to disarm an opponent, nor does the opponent have a chance to disarm you. You also gain a +4 bonus on the opposed attack roll you make to disarm your opponent.

Additionally, you can choose to use an attack action (provided you have one available to use) when attempting to disarm your opponent and, if successful, you immediately get a melee attack against that opponent as if you hadn’t used your attack for the disarm attempt.

Normal: Disarming is a swift action. See the normal disarm rules for additional information.
Special: A fighter may select Improved Disarm as one of his fighter bonus feats.

A monk may select Improved Disarm as a bonus feat at 6th level, even if she does not meet the prerequisites. [/spoiler]

I'm not sure I'd make bull rush a swift action, though... it requires a "build-up" of sorts, especially if you're pushing someone back more than 5 feet. If it were a swift action, you could have PCs bull rushing someone halfway across the map and still being able to make a full move or get a full attack. Overrun, however, should be a free or swift action, since it's taking place during the move. I'll fix that.

That's easy, using it is a swift action, but the movement must still be paid for through movement costs, so bull rush would work about the same as you're seeing overrun working, except pushing them along with you instead of just knocking them over when you pass.

But honestly, if you move trip to a swift action, you don't need overrun rules at all any more, you simply make a trip attempt as you run past whenever you would have previously made an overrun.

While we're speaking of combat actions, what do you think of the grapple rules and the opposed check? I borrowed the check system from Pathfinder Alpha, before they went to the CMB.

First hing I notice is actually the changes to IUA, which I like. Makes the feat a lot more worthwhile, especially to non-Monks, and allows you to remove Improved Grapple (though watch for it as a pre-req). I may just steal that change. ;)

Second thing I notice is the set DC for defense (based on opponent's scores), which I like, and the change to a standard action, which I don't like. This will make grappling even slower in play.

There needs to be more spacing between the end of the 'pinned' entry and '[t]he defender can attempt to break the grapple.' It appears as if that text down to the colon only applies to the 'pinned' entry.

I like the basic idea of the scaling grapple, but I don't like the auto success on higher checks, nor the fact that one of the steps shares a name with the overall mechanic (creates confusion). I'd renamed the 'grappled' step to 'wrestled' or something similar (but less silly). Then I'd take the size note out of the 'grapple' text and have each step have it's own notes on size limits. This allows one to say, hold or grab, a smaller creature than one can wrestle or pin without having to have just as many exceptions as it would take to list out the sizes anyway.

You have also taken away the need to first make a touch attack, which I do not like. It makes it so that agle creatures now have virtually no defense against grappling except as an escape, whereas before (even though AC scaling is poor compared to attack bonus), they theoretically had the chance to apply their dexterity to avoiding the grapple attempt in the first place.

I like the concept with the multiple grapplers, but it doesn't come through well. I'd just make a note in the multiple grapplers section that two creatures of one size count as a creature of one size larger. So two medium creatures working together to grapple count as a large for relative grapple size.

I also don't like the size ratio things under multiple grapplers, and it would be moot anyway with the more clear and mechanically smoother two for one size ratio.

You also need to clarify on each section that the damage done is only if taking action to do damage, the way it's worded now implies it's automatic if you initiate that grapple.

As far as monks go, the Wis bonus applies only if they're not wearing armor; I assume this is how the Deepwarden works?

Swordsage works in armor, adding Wis while still adding Dex. Do you want that limited as well as Dex? And Deepwarden adds Con instead of Dex, no matter the armor worn. Do you want that limited as well as Dex? There are other similar abilities (though not many), but they will present problem cases if you don't clarify one way or another now whether Max Dex applies to all abilities that modify armor or if it only applies to dexterity.

Well, it doesn't say "optional" or "variant", but since most DMs hand-wave encumbrance anyway, I just considered it as such.

Ah.

I'd also suggest you either completely dump sunder or you revise it entirely. It is currently not only a waste of actions, but actually a detriment (especially in higher level play). You're wasting an action on something that's unlikely to work, and if it does work, you've just lost a ton of cash. If you're dead set on having it, change it so that disables items instead of destroying them, and repairing it takes a nominal fee (5% of craft cost or some such), but honestly, disarm mechanics can do the same thing just as well without any gold cost (you could even add a feat or class ability that cause a successful disarm to make retrieving the weapon totally combat inefficient, such as requiring a search check to retrieve it or some such, or even 'items you disarm cannot be retrieved or used again for the remainder or the encounter').

Also, please simply delete your Called Shots page, or at least move it to a 'gritty' variant since it includes rules for bodily damage (I'm assuming it's not already a variant since your sunder rules link directly to it and reference it's mechanic). Called shots already exist in 3.5. They're called Power Attack, and it's a mechanic by which you sacrifice accuracy to hit a more vital spot or simply cause more intense harm to your target. A dex based copy-cat feat named "Called Shot" that worked 100% the same as Power Attack would do exactly what you want out of Called Shots (conditions and ability damage should be ability use or DM fiat anyway) and be 200% times simpler.

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Re: [3.75] Project Phoenix
« Reply #37 on: May 03, 2009, 08:19:54 PM »
Skills probably weren't the best example, but BAB, saves, feats and HP still cause class order to matter as you're building up classes, so the order will still matter when making a higher level character.
Not if you're using fractional BAB/saves. I don't see how feats matter, and like I said, 1st level hit points cease to matter after L5-6, and that's if you go barbarian and then wizard.

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While true ideally, mechanically it is false. Flurry attacks are mainhand attacks (they use mainhand modifiers and damage) and using a flurry action does not limit you from making offhand attacks.
They use the main hand BAB because it's a special action - you're treated as using two weapons (you're making one extra attack, as per TWF, thus the -2 penalty); the text specifically says that you can use unarmed attacks and monk weapons interchangeably, implying (again) that you're already using two weapons in a flurry.

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Flurry style rage variant.
I though we weren't bringing non-core material into this discussion?

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Then you should take steps to either increase the power of TWF vs Two handed weapons, or you should lower the feat investment of TWF, probably down to one feat, two at the most.
I've already reduced the power of Power Attack (limited to 5 points, as with Combat Expertise), which should bring them more into parity. If I reduce TWF to one feat (say, a feat that automatically increases the number of offhand attacks as your main increases), that would be make it no-brainer to take, especially for rogues.

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And I'm suggesting that, if you'd like to make them viable, you make them into swift actions instead, with the improved versions of each allowing you to make them as attack actions in the improved trip style in addition as a secondary option.
As a swift action, you can do it once per round only, but "for free" - it's outside of the normal attack sequence, which means that even if it misses, you don't lose any attacks. Losing the attack on a miss is the balancing factor here (that and the AoO), and I just can't justify getting rid of it.

As an attack action, you can try it as many times per round as you have attacks (which, when you think about it, is kind of broken...). If it misses, you wasted the attack, but it would've been the same as a normal attack anyway (i.e., a miss = no damage).

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That's easy, using it is a swift action, but the movement must still be paid for through movement costs, so bull rush would work about the same as you're seeing overrun working, except pushing them along with you instead of just knocking them over when you pass.
Ah, I see what you're saying now. Okay.

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But honestly, if you move trip to a swift action, you don't need overrun rules at all any more, you simply make a trip attempt as you run past whenever you would have previously made an overrun.
You do have a point here. I'll think on it.

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First hing I notice is actually the changes to IUA, which I like. Makes the feat a lot more worthwhile, especially to non-Monks, and allows you to remove Improved Grapple (though watch for it as a pre-req). I may just steal that change. ;)
IUC, you mean? Improved Unarmed Strike is still there, but I added Improved Unarmed Combat to give monks a boost. Improved Grapple was folded into Improved Offense, along with Improved Sunder and Improved Overrun.

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Second thing I notice is the set DC for defense (based on opponent's scores), which I like, and the change to a standard action, which I don't like. This will make grappling even slower in play.
Not sure why I changed grapple to a standard action.

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There needs to be more spacing between the end of the 'pinned' entry and '[t]he defender can attempt to break the grapple.' It appears as if that text down to the colon only applies to the 'pinned' entry.
Gotcha.

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I like the basic idea of the scaling grapple, but I don't like the auto success on higher checks, nor the fact that one of the steps shares a name with the overall mechanic (creates confusion). I'd renamed the 'grappled' step to 'wrestled' or something similar (but less silly). Then I'd take the size note out of the 'grapple' text and have each step have it's own notes on size limits. This allows one to say, hold or grab, a smaller creature than one can wrestle or pin without having to have just as many exceptions as it would take to list out the sizes anyway.
Good idea, that. You should be able to "hold", but not "pin" something one size larger, etc. This would also eliminate high-level fighters being able to pin giants or whatever.

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You have also taken away the need to first make a touch attack, which I do not like. It makes it so that agle creatures now have virtually no defense against grappling except as an escape, whereas before (even though AC scaling is poor compared to attack bonus), they theoretically had the chance to apply their dexterity to avoiding the grapple attempt in the first place.
Yeah, I should've kept that too. I played judo in college, so I have a fair idea of how grappling works, but when I revised the rules, I went a bit overboard trimming it down.

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I like the concept with the multiple grapplers, but it doesn't come through well. I'd just make a note in the multiple grapplers section that two creatures of one size count as a creature of one size larger. So two medium creatures working together to grapple count as a large for relative grapple size.

I also don't like the size ratio things under multiple grapplers, and it would be moot anyway with the more clear and mechanically smoother two for one size ratio.
Yeah, I can clean that up a bit.

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You also need to clarify on each section that the damage done is only if taking action to do damage, the way it's worded now implies it's automatic if you initiate that grapple.
Oh, you mean on the first round? There shouldn't be any damage applied in the round the grapple is initiated, since you're establishing the hold. I'll fix that.

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Swordsage works in armor, adding Wis while still adding Dex. Do you want that limited as well as Dex? And Deepwarden adds Con instead of Dex, no matter the armor worn. Do you want that limited as well as Dex? There are other similar abilities (though not many), but they will present problem cases if you don't clarify one way or another now whether Max Dex applies to all abilities that modify armor or if it only applies to dexterity.
Ahh, I see what you're saying. Yes, it should apply to any ability score used to modify AC.

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I'd also suggest you either completely dump sunder or you revise it entirely. It is currently not only a waste of actions, but actually a detriment (especially in higher level play). You're wasting an action on something that's unlikely to work...
Ooh. I just noticed that it says "part of an attack action as a standard action". That's incorrect - it should be as an attack action.

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If you're dead set on having it, change it so that disables items instead of destroying them, and repairing it takes a nominal fee (5% of craft cost or some such)
That's what I'd intended, but it does imply that the item is completely destroyed (as per the vanilla rules). I do have repair rules included in the Craft skill. It costs 1/5th the item's price, which is the same as vanilla.

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Also, please simply delete your Called Shots page, or at least move it to a 'gritty' variant since it includes rules for bodily damage (I'm assuming it's not already a variant since your sunder rules link directly to it and reference it's mechanic).
I did provide a disclaimer at the top. I think that should be enough; I mean, I spelled it out pretty clearly that "If you use this system, you may well destroy your PCs". I can put in a parenthetical "optional" note on the combat actions table.

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Called shots already exist in 3.5. They're called Power Attack, and it's a mechanic by which you sacrifice accuracy to hit a more vital spot or simply cause more intense harm to your target. A dex based copy-cat feat named "Called Shot" that worked 100% the same as Power Attack would do exactly what you want out of Called Shots (conditions and ability damage should be ability use or DM fiat anyway) and be 200% times simpler.
Called shots are precise attacks, like sneak attack. Power Attack is just sacrificing accuracy for power. There are already feats that deal ability damage with sneak attacks (PHB II has a couple, I think, and Song and Silence), so... yeah. It was never really intended to be anything other than a variant; I just didn't spell it out well enough, apparently.
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Re: [3.75] Project Phoenix
« Reply #38 on: May 04, 2009, 11:34:41 AM »
I don't see how feats matter

Bonus feats can affect the order in which you qualify for things, which then affects the order you can take them. Taking 2 fighter levels at the beginning of a mixed build versus at the end allows for that much more PrC requirements to be met. Same with BAB.

you're treated as using two weapons (you're making one extra attack, as per TWF, thus the -2 penalty); the text specifically says that you can use unarmed attacks and monk weapons interchangeably, implying (again) that you're already using two weapons in a flurry.

This is nothing but flavor, and flavor =/= mechanics. Mechanically all you are doing is making an extra mainhand attack and suffering a penalty to all your attacks for doing so. Otherwise flurry would require TWF feats or have harsher penalties, plus your flurry attack would only receive half strength.

I though we weren't bringing non-core material into this discussion?

I'm sorry, I got my streams crossed. Whirling Frenzy was what I was referring to, and it's in the SRD here. Regardless, it was simply an example of those types of abilities.

I've already reduced the power of Power Attack (limited to 5 points, as with Combat Expertise), which should bring them more into parity.

Bringing the good down to the same level of the bad is not the best way to fix a problem, especially when the good in this case is still so far below so many other options.

If I reduce TWF to one feat (say, a feat that automatically increases the number of offhand attacks as your main increases), that would be make it no-brainer to take, especially for rogues.

Yea, just like it's a no brainer to take power attack when you use a two-handed weapon. There's no reason for someone who's not using a shield or a two-handed weapon not to take the TWF tree now, it's just that they are currently overly punished for doing so. Not to mention that shield wielders are even more punished, since they must take the TWF tree on top of their shield feats.

As a swift action, you can do it once per round only, but "for free" - it's outside of the normal attack sequence, which means that even if it misses, you don't lose any attacks.

That's exactly the point of moving them. They're not worth doing otherwise.

Losing the attack on a miss is the balancing factor here

No, losing the attack even on a miss is why they are entirely worthless uses for your actions.

This would also eliminate high-level fighters being able to pin giants or whatever.

Personally I don't see that as a problem, provided the bonus is enough. I'd eliminate the automatic scale up of grappling status (let them burn attack actions to ramp it up), I'd add in a feat that allowed you to take someone instantly to wrestled (so burn a feat to remain at the current status quo which would give a lot of relative power after the changes), and have every +10 to +15 that you beat the DC of the grapple check by allow you to act as if you were one size larger, if you so chose (so that you aren't disqualified from grappling smaller creatures if you do too well). This way extremely grapple focused characters still have a way to work on even much larger foes, if they can conjure Herculean efforts of wrestling.

it should be as an attack action.

Even as an attack action, sundering is a poor option.

I do have repair rules included in the Craft skill. It costs 1/5th the item's price, which is the same as vanilla.

This is exceptionally high, especially when you can only then resell the item for 50% of it's value. You're now only making 30% profit on any enemy weapons that you are actually able to use your focused maneuver on.

Power Attack is just sacrificing accuracy for power.

As is a Called Shot, as specifically attempting to strike a more vital area will cause an overall drop in your ability to inflict any damage at all, unless your opponent is caught off guard or you are especially adept at taking advantage of a distracted opponent (sneak attacks against flat-footed and flanked opponents). I believe that, once more, you are confusing how an ability is described as working with how it affects the numbers of the game. ;)

Kerrick

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Re: [3.75] Project Phoenix
« Reply #39 on: May 05, 2009, 04:05:59 AM »
This is nothing but flavor, and flavor =/= mechanics. Mechanically all you are doing is making an extra mainhand attack and suffering a penalty to all your attacks for doing so. Otherwise flurry would require TWF feats or have harsher penalties, plus your flurry attack would only receive half strength.
In this case, I think flavor = mechanics. I'm sure you've seen martial artists fight. They use both hands, their feet, knees, elbows, whatever - they don't just flail away with one hand. A monkish flurry is a special action whereby he gains an extra attack. It doesn't really matter which hand it's with, because he's attacking with both equally.

Here's an interesting tidbit: The 3.0 SRD states that "A monk may also use the flurry of blows if armed with a special monk weapon (kama, nunchaku, or siangham). If armed with one such weapon, the monk makes the extra attack either with that weapon or unarmed. If armed with two such weapons, she uses one for the regular attack (or attacks) and the other for the extra attack. In any case, her damage bonus on the attack with her off hand is not reduced."

I think we can agree that this is pretty awkward, and probably the reason they changed the wording in 3.5 to allow them to make attacks with any weapon interchangeably.

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Bringing the good down to the same level of the bad is not the best way to fix a problem, especially when the good in this case is still so far below so many other options.
Such as...?

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Yea, just like it's a no brainer to take power attack when you use a two-handed weapon. There's no reason for someone who's not using a shield or a two-handed weapon not to take the TWF tree now, it's just that they are currently overly punished for doing so.
Wow, too many negatives. I'm confused. :(

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Not to mention that shield wielders are even more punished, since they must take the TWF tree on top of their shield feats.
There's only one shield feat (unless you're delving into PHB II), and I could see adding the effects of TWF to it - it applies to a single "weapon", so it wouldn't be overly unbalancing.

Side note: I was thinking about how to get additional attacks, and I thought "Well, wouldn't it just scale? You'd get a new shield bash attack for each additional primary attack." Which is, of course, what you suggested for TWF a couple posts ago. It might not be a bad idea... creatures with multiple arms could just take MWF once for each extra arm and be done with it. I'll have to think on this.

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No, losing the attack even on a miss is why they are entirely worthless uses for your actions.
But... if you make a normal attack and miss, you've done exactly the same thing. How is this any different?

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Personally I don't see that [fighters pinning giants] as a problem, provided the bonus is enough.
You can't grapple anything more than one size larger anyway, so it's kind of a moot point. :)

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I'd eliminate the automatic scale up of grappling status (let them burn attack actions to ramp it up)
That's already there - each round, you can either just maintain the current hold and deal damage, or attempt to get a better grip (but then you run the chance of actually worsening the hold, if you roll badly).

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I'd add in a feat that allowed you to take someone instantly to wrestled (so burn a feat to remain at the current status quo which would give a lot of relative power after the changes)
Got the first part - feat to put someone in the wrestled/grappled condition - but I'm not following the second part.

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and have every +10 to +15 that you beat the DC of the grapple check by allow you to act as if you were one size larger, if you so chose (so that you aren't disqualified from grappling smaller creatures if you do too well). This way extremely grapple focused characters still have a way to work on even much larger foes, if they can conjure Herculean efforts of wrestling.
Not a bad idea. It would be really hard to get more than 1, maybe 2, sizes larger, so it's not that unbalanced. Or make it a feat - I could bring back Legendary Wrestler, which would either grant the PC a virtual size category or let him gain the bonus you mentioned above. In the first case, it'd have to have pretty high requirements; in the second, it might not be worth it. Hmm...

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Even as an attack action, sundering is a poor option.
If you're attacking someone's armor/weapon, sure. I tried (obviously not too well) to tie sunder into the Smashing Objects rules, to unify them. I was thinking about something else, too. If an item is reduced to 0 hp, it's damaged - it can't be used until it's been repaired, but it's not completely destroyed. If it's reduced to its damage threshold (0 minus hardness) it's completely destroyed and can't be repaired short of magical means. So, for instance, a steel sword at 0 is just beat to hell and not good for much of anything (deals half damage); at -10, it's shattered. Items with hardness 0 (paper and glass) are simply destroyed when reduced to 0.

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This is exceptionally high, especially when you can only then resell the item for 50% of it's value. You're now only making 30% profit on any enemy weapons that you are actually able to use your focused maneuver on.
Why would you sunder an item you intended to sell later?  ??? If I wanted to keep/sell it, I'd attempt to disarm it.

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As is a Called Shot, as specifically attempting to strike a more vital area will cause an overall drop in your ability to inflict any damage at all
Technically, yes, since reducing the chance to hit = reducing the chance of dealing damage. There are times, however, when making a called shot is useful - fighting a beholder, for instance. YMMV.
Project Phoenix. 4E the way it should have been done.