Author Topic: Your grievances concerning skills  (Read 18146 times)

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DavidWL

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Re: Your grievances concerning skills
« Reply #120 on: June 02, 2011, 05:54:00 AM »
I agree with many others.

Here is an interesting article:
http://www222.pair.com/sjohn/blueroom/hedge.htm

For skills to compete, they have to compete with magic.  Also, in general, I'm against radically changing the system.

Thoughts:
1)  Since a skill is competing with magic, a skill should let you do things that are supernatural
2)  Since you have a very finite number of skills, but can do it over and over, it should be more flexible (because it is more finite), but also weaker
3)  Since (I) don't want to radically change the rules, feats buy you access to this.  Lots of different options (1 feat per skill, 1 feat per "tier" of skills, etc.)
4)  Since skills should be roughly level appropriate, they should not be quite so random in performance ... a feat lets you rule 2D20 and take the best of 2.  A 2nd feat lets you roll 3D20, etc.

We'd have to detail it out, but roughly speaking, I'd say that (ranks/5, round down = spell level). 

Sneak, 20 ranks ~ "normal" 4th level spell.  Greater invisibility at will, evasion from scrying, short-range teleportation, etc.   It costs you a few feats, and a lot of skill ranks, but you get to do cool stuff.  Colorful description encouraged.  Keep in mind that others are throwing around miracles.

Linguistics, 10 ranks ~ "normal" 2nd level spell.  Speak with anyone, speak with animals, delivery messages with the wind, have a conversation saying one thing to one person and a completely different thing to a different person, etc.  (At higher levels, you can talk with the earth, the wind, the dead, contact other plane, etc.)

Etc.

Spend a feat or 3, and skills become magical.  The feat rogue (where feats are for skills) becomes quite powerful.

Best,
David
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Non-PC activities like out of combat healing should be left to wands and NPCs. It's not fun to play a walking wand of CLW. Likewise, being a combat wall is not a viable PC role. A Wall of Force could do that.

-Sort of, but you left out the important note that a Wall of Force does it better.

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snakeman830

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Re: Your grievances concerning skills
« Reply #121 on: June 02, 2011, 11:01:21 AM »
That's a terrible idea.  Now you're saying that, to balance skills, we have to make anyone who wants to use them for anything resembling level equivalency burn multiple feats on it.  No.  Terribad idea.  You say that it's balanced because Clerics are throwing around Miracles?  Hell no!  The Cleric doesn't have to do a damn thing other than have 19 Wisdom to be throwing them around!  But the Rogue has to set 3 feats on fire just to replicate a couple of spells?  No.  Not to mention that good Hide/Move Silently are better than Greater invisibility, since they aren't beaten by True Seeing and actually work with Darkstalker.
I am constantly amazed by how many DM's ban Tomb of Battle.  The book doesn't even exist!

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MalcolmSprye

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Re: Your grievances concerning skills
« Reply #122 on: June 02, 2011, 11:18:41 AM »
That's a terrible idea.  Now you're saying that, to balance skills, we have to make anyone who wants to use them for anything resembling level equivalency burn multiple feats on it.  No.  Terribad idea.  You say that it's balanced because Clerics are throwing around Miracles?  Hell no!  The Cleric doesn't have to do a damn thing other than have 19 Wisdom to be throwing them around!  But the Rogue has to set 3 feats on fire just to replicate a couple of spells?  No.  Not to mention that good Hide/Move Silently are better than Greater invisibility, since they aren't beaten by True Seeing and actually work with Darkstalker.

I agree.  If that idea were to be used, it would have to be: you have x ranks in y skill ->Gain z ability. 
No feats burned, just gain it.

At least that helps out the skill monkeys.  The BSF is left out in the cold still.  That's okay though, because he can't have nice things. :P

DavidWL

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Re: Your grievances concerning skills
« Reply #123 on: June 02, 2011, 01:48:24 PM »
I want it to cost _some_ amount of feats, because otherwise it makes everyone stronger ... more power creep.

But if it costs a feat or two (or something), then it doesn't make the Wizard "simply stronger" ... if he wants to play the skill game, he has to spend a feat like everyone else, and the Wizard finds that feat more expensive than the feat-rogue.

Best,
David
Some Cool Quotes:  [spoiler]
Quote from: unknown
Non-PC activities like out of combat healing should be left to wands and NPCs. It's not fun to play a walking wand of CLW. Likewise, being a combat wall is not a viable PC role. A Wall of Force could do that.

-Sort of, but you left out the important note that a Wall of Force does it better.

Quote from: Runestar / skydragonknight
The most powerful character is the one that you actually get to play.

Quote from: Operation Shoestring
I often have to remind people not to underrate divination.  The ability to effectively metagame without actually metagaming beats the ability to set things on fire more times than not.
[/spoiler]
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Nytemare3701

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Re: Your grievances concerning skills
« Reply #124 on: June 02, 2011, 02:22:45 PM »
I want it to cost _some_ amount of feats, because otherwise it makes everyone stronger ... more power creep.

But if it costs a feat or two (or something), then it doesn't make the Wizard "simply stronger" ... if he wants to play the skill game, he has to spend a feat like everyone else, and the Wizard finds that feat more expensive than the feat-rogue.

Best,
David

In this case, stronger is a GOOD thing. I'm balancing my entire rewrite against Tier 3. The mundane classes are getting significantly boosted (check my class rewrites) and the tier 1 & 2 classes are being scaled back (mostly by giving other characters easier counters, and changing some of the spell school rules to fix a LOT of the abuse)

Let me run some numbers...

Wizard with 18 INT gets 24 skill points at first level. 8 of them are wildcard points, while the remaining 16 are Int only.
Rogue with 14 INT (good for a skillmonkey) gets 40 skill points at first level. 32 of them are wildcard points, 8 of them are Int only.

The rogue is already pulling ahead at this point.

Now let's factor in the physical scores.
The full wizard statblock is 10,12,14,18,10,10 (That seems to be the goto build for a pure casting wizard)
This gives our wizard another 4 dex points & 8 con points. That should cover concentration, and work toward 5 in balance.

Meanwhile the rogue with his MAD build (14,16,14,14,10,10) gets 8 str, 12 dex, & 8 con. All of those points are going to be useful to him.

Totals:
Wizard: 36 (Mostly in INT only)
Rogue: 68 (Many of which can be used wherever the rogue likes)

If that's not versatile enough for you, how about making class-derived skill points (the "X" in "X+Int") ignore the cross-class rules? Now the skillmonkey really CAN learn almost anything.



Oh, and about our BSF? X+STR+DEX+CON= 2+3+2+3=40 Skill points, mostly on physical skills. 8 of them are wildcard. STILL higher than the wizard, and more useful for his chosen profession.




Rejakor

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Re: Your grievances concerning skills
« Reply #125 on: June 06, 2011, 05:18:01 PM »
I want it to cost _some_ amount of feats, because otherwise it makes everyone stronger ... more power creep.

But if it costs a feat or two (or something), then it doesn't make the Wizard "simply stronger" ... if he wants to play the skill game, he has to spend a feat like everyone else, and the Wizard finds that feat more expensive than the feat-rogue.

Blurp.  Base it on ranks in trained skills add proviso that trained skills are now class specific for max rank cap and that bonus ranks don't exist.  For the purposes of skill abilities.  Specific > general.  So the wizard can turn into a dusk giant and get 500 ranks in spot, but those don't count for the purposes of Spot Skill Abilities as you specifically disallow that.

Making things cost feats for the already feat starved archetypes (skill monkeys, BSFs) is dumb.  Wizards can afford to blow feats on stupid crap like this.  Rogues and Fighter Archers can't.

Daniel678

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Re: Your grievances concerning skills
« Reply #126 on: June 06, 2011, 06:20:31 PM »
In my opinion there need to be several changes to skills. Choosing your skills should be relevant. The gap between optimizing a skill and just putting points in should be reduced.

A nice change would be if spells and magical items gained bonuses for either having ranks in a skill or being able to make a check. For example, the haste spell could automatically grant increased movement speed but only give an extra attack to a player who had some ranks in acrobatics or who could make a check. Part of linguistics could be understanding and replicating subtleties in languages so that someone with just tongues would be marked as a foreigner unless they had points in linguistics. Charm person could allow an instantaneous diplomacy roll with a lower combat penalty than normal. Knock could allow a spellcraft check to replace an open lock check. There are so many ways to incorporate skills into spells. This would also reduce the sheer flexibility of magic and encourage areas of specialization. It would also make magic items stronger for classes with relevant skills instead of having magic items be a (now) poor man's wizard.

At the same time skills alone should be made more relevant. Unused skills or skills that quickly become useless should be combined. For example jump would be rolled into an acrobatics skill. Skill tricks could provide bonuses to certain subsections of a skill.

Also, a lot of skill bonuses should be removed. Stacking skill bonuses can really make ranks almost irrelevant. I agree that feats should provide neat and interesting ways to use skills. They should not give small bonuses and there should not be a feat tax.

Endarire

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Re: Your grievances concerning skills
« Reply #127 on: June 07, 2011, 03:27:21 AM »
Nyte: What's progress on your updated skill system?
Hood - My first answer to all your build questions; past, present, and future.

Speaking of which:
Don't even need TO for this.  Any decent Hood build, especially one with Celerity, one-rounds [Azathoth, the most powerful greater deity from d20 Cthulu].
Does it bug anyone else that we've reached the point where characters who can obliterate a greater deity in one round are considered "decent?"

X-Codes

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Re: Your grievances concerning skills
« Reply #128 on: June 07, 2011, 11:36:46 AM »
They don't get a sizable chunk.  They get 4+ int.
Crusaders get 4+int and are likely to get a base 14 Intelligence for Improved Trip (maybe 13 in a lower PB game).  The end result won't be as many skill points as the other two classes, but they easily have the best class features, anyway.
Swordsages get 6+int, and Unarmed variants might qualify for Carmendine Monk to make better use of a high Int.
Warblades get 4+int and all their class features except a few are based on their Intelligence mod, so you can be sure that it's getting a solid investment early on, even if Strength is still the primary focus.

They are all miles ahead of the Paladin and Fighter, who net a measly 2+int skill points, and the Barbarian and Monk don't have as good of class skills.

Also, Knowledge skills are good, but not that good.  Stuff like Handle Animal, Use Magic Device, and Diplomacy are way better, and Wizards don't get any of those.

veekie

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Re: Your grievances concerning skills
« Reply #129 on: June 07, 2011, 04:18:54 PM »
Granted, they don't really NEED those, theres a spell for it!
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Nytemare3701

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Re: Your grievances concerning skills
« Reply #130 on: June 07, 2011, 05:23:27 PM »
Nyte: What's progress on your updated skill system?

Not going well. My normal brainstorming crew has been busy for the last 3 months >.<

I'm going to use Amechra's task template, with minor modifications to allow for "Truenamer" style usage.