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Sylvius the Mad

Why I'm not entirely happy with Update #7.

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Update 7 raises two concerns.

 

First, I am not immediately comfortable with the idea that combat and non-combat skills will be purchased separately. I like having to choose between magic missile and herbalism. I like being able to focus on one thing and get REALLY good at that thing, paying for that by lacking versatility, and I like being forced not to be especially good at things if I choose to have versatility. Versatility has value. Therefore, versatility should have a cost.

 

Maybe the game world will be designed such that this will still work, but at first glance don't like the idea that I can make an expert in non-combat solutions who is also an expert in combat solution.

 

 

Second, not penalising people for avoiding combat is good, but Tim specifically referred to getting XP for quests as opposed to getting XP for killing things. How does that work when challenges are overcome without those challenges being tied to a quest? Is that effort wasted? In some cases, perhaps it should be wasted: grinding low-level monsters probably shouldn't grant XP is there's no reason for killing them. But if I ignore the quests available to me and start stealing from people, does that mean I won't earn XP for that stealing?

 

I can imagine world designs where that would work, but I can imagine many more where it wouldn't.

 

I'm not saying these features will make the game worse. I'm saying they worry me.

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God used to be my co-pilot, but then we crashed in the Andes and I had to eat him.

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I liken it to the difference between skills and perks in Fallout, that worked out OK didn't it?

 

As to the argument for and against experience points for finishing quests/tasks and not for whacking mobs ... the best PnP games I ever played rewarded players at the end of the game session with no regard for the creatures killed, it was all about obstacles overcome. perhaps there will be a way to track these kinds of obstacles overcome in the game without them being strictly tied to a formal "quest?"

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I have considered possible ways to track XP outside of formal quests when using quest-based XP. It typically involves generating mini-quests on the fly for each thing done when that thing isn't tied to a quest, but the implementation always gets really complicated when I try to work it out.

 

And I'm forced to admit that I haven't played the original Fallout games. My gaming history runs 1983-1993, 1998-present. I was dark for a period, leaving a mid-90s-shaped gap in my gaming knowledge. If Fallout had this sort of segregation of combat and non-combat skills, and it worked, then my fear on that front is at least partly assuaged.


God used to be my co-pilot, but then we crashed in the Andes and I had to eat him.

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I am actually quite ecstatic with everything from Update 7.

 

The further from D&D, the better. :)

 

Seriously, though, if you're realism simming, of course training more in gunplay will not leave you as much time to practice basket weaving... but for fun and game balance (at least for those of us who don't enjoy managing spreadsheets or find enjoyment in weighing the pro's and con's of two unlike things drawing on the same resource (do I cast Alarm or do I sharpen my sword for the next day, I can only do one in the given time, gah!)) I think separating combat from non-combat is the right way to go.

 

I also have never been a fan of XP fo killing things. I like XP for solving problems.

 

Given my druthers, there'd be no XP for stealing things, either. But that's me.

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"I am actually quite ecstatic with everything from Update 7.

 

The further from D&D, the better."

 

Eh. Nothing in that update really makes it much different from D&D. D&D tends to seperate combat and non combat skills too. And, there's different ways to give xp as well and is 100%b up to the DM.

 

Nothing original in that update and that's a good thing 'cause sometimes creating soemthing new is not needed when the 'old' already works.


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I am actually quite ecstatic with everything from Update 7.

 

The further from D&D, the better. :)

 

Actually, what Tim describes isn't a million miles from D&D. You get separate skill points per level in 3E D&D and many of those skills are non-combat skills. There is a parallel system of feats, admittedly but the idea that skills are divided into different application mechanics was introduced into D&D in 2000 with the advent of 3E.


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"I am actually quite ecstatic with everything from Update 7.

 

The further from D&D, the better."

 

Eh. Nothing in that update really makes it much different from D&D. D&D tends to seperate combat and non combat skills too. And, there's different ways to give xp as well and is 100%b up to the DM.

 

If you ignore 4E for a moment (and most D&D fans will - I prefer 4E, but that's a distraction)

 

Magic system - you have the same spell slots for light, magic missile, armor and charm person. Utility spells versus combat spells, and damage spells versus defensive spells. Even the addition of cantrips and orisions doesn't change this up much save put the most useful utility spells (detect magic, light, etc.) into a separate category but later levels the same thing will still happen.

Skills - Knowledges are in the same set of skills as sneaking, performance and crafting in the same set as tumbling and concentration - skills used largely outside of combat drawn from the same resources as they used primarily inside combat --- (I realize this is a bit broader, as you can sneak or tumble outside of combat, but you practically never use knowledge or craft in a fight)

Feats - Skill Focus, Skill Training, and any non-combat feats draw from the same number of feats you can choose as combat-oriented feats.

 

So, yes, separating combat skills and such from non-combat is different from D&D.

 

And while there are optional rules and house rules for XP for things other than killing monsters, outside of 4E your primary source of XP is killing things. So, again, moving away from D&D.

 

You might have a different view... but once the magic system is announced (and, I'm willing to be it ain't vancian) it'll be even more NOT D&D.

 

Nothing original in that update and that's a good thing 'cause sometimes creating soemthing new is not needed when the 'old' already works.

 

That's assuming you think it works.

 

I enjoyed much Basic, 1st and 2nd ED D&D in my day. And I really like 4E. But I'lll be happier for Obsidian to make their own way with their own unique mechanics that fit the game, world and story they want to tell!

 

 

Actually, what Tim describes isn't a million miles from D&D. You get separate skill points per level in 3E D&D and many of those skills are non-combat skills. There is a parallel system of feats, admittedly but the idea that skills are divided into different application mechanics was introduced into D&D in 2000 with the advent of 3E.

 

What 3E did was add a lot of restrictions to character creation, not freedoms.

 

Prior to 3E you could use the optional non-weapon proficiencies, if you wanted to , in 2nd ED. Or, like 1st ED, you could just create your character and tell you DM "My character is a very talented horse rider who also breeds horses and knows all the heraldry and pageanty as he wants to be a knight someday!" and the DM would say "Okay, cool" and you role-played as such without needing codified rules for that.

 

Being a cRPG, we'll need rules so the mechanics can work with such things...

but, tabletop? You really probably only want rules mechanics and dice rolling for things where you want a chance of failure, usually due to some kind of direct conflict.

 

But I digress.

Edited by Merin

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I was very pleased with update #7, I do not share your concerns and I liked what was proposed I have to admit.

 

I agree and I like the fact that they are trying something new.

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I hope the magic system is non-Vancian too and see nothing wrong with mana-based systems personally.

 

Merin, you are the first person I have ever met on this forum who actually likes 4E D&D. As a grognard I have obviously never touched it, how does it manage skills?


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I like the idea of the majority of the XP going toward completing quests. It can encourage multiple ways to play the game, rather than just building a tank who brawls with anything to earn the most XP.

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"Console exclusive is such a harsh word." - Darque

"Console exclusive is two words Darque." - Nartwak (in response to Darque's observation)

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I hope the magic system is non-Vancian too and see nothing wrong with mana-based systems personally.

 

Merin, you are the first person I have ever met on this forum who actually likes 4E D&D. As a grognard I have obviously never touched it, how does it manage skills?

 

It pairs down the number of skills from 3E, so instead of Hide in Shadows and Move Silently you have just Stealth, and instead of Jump, Climb and Swim you have Athletics.

 

It also advances them differently. You don't add points every level - you are either trained or untrained, which gives you a +5 bonus, and then all your skills (trained or untrained) go up as you level.

 

Otherwise, checks are made the same - d20 vs. a DC. You can take 10's and 20's. Etc.

 

I can't stand 3rd ED. And if there are parts of 4E I cannot stand, it's stuff that 3rd introduced (no class restrictions for races, unfettered multi-classing (as nerfed as it was in 4E, you still could do anything into anything from any character, more or less), skills and feats.)

 

I had a group of friends who all preferred 4E and we played a lot. Then many of us moved around the same time.

Edited by Merin

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I think one of the few mistakes DX:HR made compared to DX was not forcing the player to choose a build and play style. I like that there's a conflict between being good at non-combat and being good at combat. A separate profession system that doesn't use the same xp as combat would be OK if there's a enough variety that you're still forced to choose, there's still a conflict that needs to be balanced.

Edited by AwesomeOcelot

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What is not clear is whether or not you have a limited pool of points or level cap. Level capping for example, would force a player to choose and choose well his or her point allocation.

 

If there is no level cap nor point pool cap, it would be interesting to see just how that will work out.

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Och..! 4E...

I remember the April Fools charSheet they released the same year 4E would be released. At release I was horrified to see that the joke wasn't actually that far from the final product. :wacko:

 

 

As for Update #7:

Not giving xp for kills is a very bold move, but I absolutely approve!


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XP from completed quests thereby encouraging/rewarding non-psychotic behavior?

 

Viable non violent rpg paths and skills?

 

I like.

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I'm perfectly happy with Update 7, and cannot say I share any of the OP's worries, especially as my main P&P RPG dropped the idea of pure monster kills giving XP somewhere in the early 90s. That concept just feels strange...

 

Edit: Although it will probably give combat ability-XP, which is just practical.

Edited by walkir

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This seems ridiculous. Impossible to please everyone I suppose....there will always be the one that cries outrage over the lack of rainbow-colored unicorns. :bat:


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Great update.

 

Personally, I'm hoping that XP awards will be handled similarly to VtM: Bloodlines. In that game, it only mattered that you completed your goal(s), not how you did it. If you hacked and slashed your way through a quest, that was fine, but you could have just as easily snuck past your opponents or talked your way through. The point is, it was entirely up to the player to decide how to resolve quests.

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I assume he was refering to multiple ways of doing quests. For example, clear an area of bandits. Kill, them, talk them into living by intimidating them, by scaring them, whatever... They all should generate quest completion XP even if you did not kill them. Right?

Edited by Audron

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Merin, you are the first person I have ever met on this forum who actually likes 4E D&D. As a grognard I have obviously never touched it, how does it manage skills?

Badly. lol

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