3.5, Oh Noes!!!

Discussion concerning the upcoming Toril 2.0 update as well as general 3.5 edition D&D discussion
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3.5, Oh Noes!!!

Postby daggaz » Thu Aug 16, 2007 4:16 pm

So.... what are you imms all going to do, now that Wizards is apparently about to announce the upcoming release of DnD 4e?

Its bad enough the rest of us are going to slowly be forced to scrap all our semi-new books for the new crap, but dang, they could have given you at least a year of up time with toril2.0 before switching all the rules out again, eh?
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Postby Shevarash » Thu Aug 16, 2007 4:37 pm

Well...this is probably a good thing. - assuming that 4th Edition will be another round of fixes and additions to the base d20 system. We're already a "loose" interpretation of d20 rules, so we'll just adapt and use new rules when they suit our purposes.

The whole 2.0 system is designed to be easily updated and modified as well, so minor rule changes are no big deal, and content addition such as feats/spells/skills is a snap.

Just to be clear, 2.0 is not meant to be a slavish recreation of 3.5 - we have very purposefully been "cherry picking" those elements of 3.5 that we like, while changing those that need it, whether for balance purposes or just due to translation to the MUD medium.
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Postby Ragorn » Fri Aug 17, 2007 1:59 am

I was SO hoping that Toril 2.0 would go live today, same day as the 4e announcement :D
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Postby Shevarash » Fri Aug 17, 2007 1:19 pm

I'd like to actually see the 4.0 announcement. The D&D site has been down since yesterday afternoon.
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Postby Ragorn » Fri Aug 17, 2007 5:33 pm

The forums are now at forums.gleemax.com for whatever reason.

http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dn ... ND062006FP

That's the link to the main D&D page, which is now plastered with 4th edition stuff.
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Postby Shevarash » Fri Aug 17, 2007 7:26 pm

D&D 3.6, now - with Tieflings!


I dunno, I haven't seen anything particularly interesting, game mechanic wise, thus far.

I'm a little put off that they are touting this as "easier" than 3.5. 3.5 is already easy enough, what it needs is MORE interesting dynamics, not less. Maybe that's just me though.
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Postby Tasan » Fri Aug 17, 2007 8:54 pm

Shevarash wrote:what it needs is MORE interesting dynamics, not less. Maybe that's just me though.


Sounds a lot like what a lot of us have been saying about this place for years...

Ahh progress.
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Postby Sarvis » Fri Aug 17, 2007 10:07 pm

Shevarash wrote:D&D 3.6, now - with Tieflings!


I dunno, I haven't seen anything particularly interesting, game mechanic wise, thus far.

I'm a little put off that they are touting this as "easier" than 3.5. 3.5 is already easy enough, what it needs is MORE interesting dynamics, not less. Maybe that's just me though.


This is based on someone elses post, and I'm not sure what his source was. (Could check, but lazy.)

Anyway, apparently they are getting rid of things like saving throws. Apparently only the caster will roll, and if his roll beats the targets save stat it succeeds. Supposedly they are also simpling rules for grappling and such.

I don't really think the rules need simplification either, and if they did I'm not sure that's the right direction...
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Postby Guardias » Fri Aug 17, 2007 11:37 pm

Argh, bet they are going to do it the way they redid the Star Wars Rpg that they printed in May, in making the game so much simpler they are losing the flavor that makes it what it is.
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Postby Shevarash » Sat Aug 18, 2007 3:55 am

Tasan wrote:
Shevarash wrote:what it needs is MORE interesting dynamics, not less. Maybe that's just me though.


Sounds a lot like what a lot of us have been saying about this place for years...

Ahh progress.


Sorry, no point for that. Try again, this time with funny!
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Postby Ragorn » Sat Aug 18, 2007 4:06 am

Some of the rules could use some simplification. Grappling is a great example. Did you know all of these grappling rules off the top of your head?

1. You draw an AOO when you initiate a grapple attempt, unless you have Improved Grapple, in which case you don't. If the AOO hits you, the grapple attempt is forfeit... unlike disarm, where you still get the disarm attempt if the AOO hits you.

2. When grappling, you lose your Dex bonus to AC... to everyone except the person you're grappling with.

3. Ranged attacks that target anyone involved in a grapple always hit a random target in the grapple, unless the attacker has Improved Precise Shot. Melee attacks resolve normally.

4. If you're grappling, you may not cast any spell with somatic components, nor can you cast a spell with material/focus components unless those components are in your hand when you get grappled. Even if you can cast a spell, it requires a Concentration check with DC... well, you tell me what the DC is :)

5. You can't move while grappling. You can, however, move up to half your speed by winning an opposed grapple check against the person you're grappling. This is a standard action, not a move action. If you win, you drag your grappling opponent with you. Both of you incur AOOs for that movement, if applicable.

6. Even if you aren't the one who initiated the grapple, you can still attempt to pin your opponent.

7. Releasing the grapple is a standard action that requires an opposed grapple check, even if you were the one who initiated the grapple. If you win, you then step into any adjacent square, which presumably (though it is not stated) provokes an AOO from the guy you just released. If you're pinning an enemy, releasing the grapple becomes a free action.
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Postby Tasan » Sat Aug 18, 2007 4:45 am

Shevarash wrote:
Tasan wrote:
Shevarash wrote:what it needs is MORE interesting dynamics, not less. Maybe that's just me though.


Sounds a lot like what a lot of us have been saying about this place for years...

Ahh progress.


Sorry, no point for that. Try again, this time with funny!


Did you hear about that 2.0 thing? It's coming soon, just like Trap!

HAHAHAHAHAAH.
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Postby Ragorn » Sat Aug 18, 2007 8:11 am

Image
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Postby Shevarash » Sat Aug 18, 2007 3:42 pm

Ragorn wrote:Some of the rules could use some simplification. Grappling is a great example. Did you know all of these grappling rules off the top of your head?


You're right of course - there are some clunky things like Grapple that do beg for simplification. I think those things are the exceptions to the rule though - for the most part I find core 3.5 to have just about the right level of complexity. I would like to see more advanced optional rules in further supplements, and they've actually been doing a pretty decent job at that lately with some of the stuff in PHB2, Complete XYZ, Tome of Battle, etc.

So there's no doubt that an update to the rules is in order every couple of years, but this big push to a shiny new version number and accompanying marketing materials might be good for the business of D&D, but I'm not convinced yet that it's good for the players. However, I was impressed with 3E (despite all of it's problems) and 3.5, so I'll give them the benefit of the doubt until I can actually read the new books and get the whole picture at once.

As for how this relates to 2.0 - we will continue using the d20 system and will modify it and update it as we feel is best for this MUD.
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4th Edition

Postby Old School » Sat Aug 18, 2007 4:47 pm

Hey All,

As someone who runs table-top games I found 3.5 just about right. A great point was made about addressing a few elements (Grapple was excellently described) but on the whole I did not see many issues that needed fixing let alone a new edition.

Like Shev stated, time will tell and we'll have to wait for the posts. I just dread the fact I'll need new books. I still have 1st and 2nd Edition material. I may need a new house to store everything in.

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Re: 4th Edition

Postby Lilira » Sat Aug 18, 2007 4:58 pm

Old School wrote:Hey All,

As someone who runs table-top games I found 3.5 just about right. A great point was made about addressing a few elements (Grapple was excellently described) but on the whole I did not see many issues that needed fixing let alone a new edition.

Like Shev stated, time will tell and we'll have to wait for the posts. I just dread the fact I'll need new books. I still have 1st and 2nd Edition material. I may need a new house to store everything in.

Rho


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Postby Ragorn » Sun Aug 19, 2007 5:25 am

Shevarash wrote:You're right of course - there are some clunky things like Grapple that do beg for simplification. I think those things are the exceptions to the rule though - for the most part I find core 3.5 to have just about the right level of complexity.

I actually agree with you, for the most part. The level of complexity in the rules is right around optimal, it's simple enough to get into quickly but deep enough that you continually find new aspects. They just need to properly simplify some of the mechanics (grappling, concealment, polymorph, etc).

As for 3.5 itself, I think it has some major flaws that I hope are worked out in 4th. There's a real disparity between the core base classes, with Druids, Clerics, and Wizards (in that order) dominating the martial melee classes. It only gets worse with splatbooks, as ridiculous new spells are added much faster than useful feats (Tome of Battle notwithstanding, which essentially turns martial classes into spellcasters anyway). And almost all of the base classes introduced in the PHB2 and the Complete X books are total crap. The only exceptions are the Warlock and Duskblade, and perhaps the Favored Soul and the Spellthief if you're feeling generous. Does anyone actually play a Shugenja? Scout and Swashbuckler are decent dips, but base classes should be more useful than a three-level dip.

I despise the skill system. Level of effort isn't a consideration in your skill checks... if I spend a full-round action to glance over the room, my Spot check should get a bonus over someone who takes a free action to look around. Likewise, taking longer to Search a room just lets you roll more Search checks, you can't increase your potential maximum roll. If you need to hit DC 30, you simply can't do it if your Search check is +5, no matter how many hours you spend Searching.

So yeah, we'll see. I'm not thrilled about having to buy new books, but if they fix the holes in 3.5, I'll give it a whirl.
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Postby moritheil » Sun Aug 19, 2007 3:47 pm

WotC is really pushing the envelope in terms of seeing how far the general (or gaming) public is willing to go to keep up to date with the latest DnD rules. The splatbook model of business itself is to blame for power inflation, since they have to provide an incentive to buy optional books.

Ragorn wrote:Some of the rules could use some simplification. Grappling is a great example. Did you know all of these grappling rules off the top of your head?


Yes. But then, I'd hardly expect most players to.

Shugenja is good for one thing only - as a counterspelling machine, with Improved Counterspell. As such, I have seen them a few times in campaign play. Otherwise the class is essentially a watered-down sorc.

Beguiler, Ninja, Healer, and Marshall are also useful base classes, though as you pointed out, it's really rare to see someone taking them as a single class for an entire progression.

Ragorn wrote:I despise the skill system. Level of effort isn't a consideration in your skill checks.


IMO that's as it should be. Spending extra hours of effort on something that you just can't do (like a complicated bypass surgery) when you have no training shouldn't make something possible. Maybe for untrained skills, it makes more sense, but I can certainly see why the mechanics are they are for "trained only" skills.
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Postby Kordon » Mon Aug 20, 2007 12:56 am

Shevarash wrote:I'm a little put off that they are touting this as "easier" than 3.5. 3.5 is already easy enough, what it needs is MORE interesting dynamics, not less. Maybe that's just me though.


i am a first time dm with a group that is half newb, and half veteran of ADnD and i have actually gotten the opposite complaint from the. The veterans think it is much harder than the first 2 editions, and the newbs just in general think that it's hard. but now that they have gotten to second level, and are starting to learn it better and better, they may come around, but i know one thing for certain. Even though i know a lot about 3.5, i would never dm with books right by my side. i have to look things up a few times a game.

"What does craft alchemy do?", "if i'm grappling, can i pick the guy up and throw him?", "If I use gust of wind can I ....."
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Postby Yayaril » Mon Aug 20, 2007 3:17 pm

Ragorn wrote:Some of the rules could use some simplification. Grappling is a great example. Did you know all of these grappling rules off the top of your head?

1. You draw an AOO when you initiate a grapple attempt, unless you have Improved Grapple, in which case you don't. If the AOO hits you, the grapple attempt is forfeit... unlike disarm, where you still get the disarm attempt if the AOO hits you.

2. When grappling, you lose your Dex bonus to AC... to everyone except the person you're grappling with.

3. Ranged attacks that target anyone involved in a grapple always hit a random target in the grapple, unless the attacker has Improved Precise Shot. Melee attacks resolve normally.

4. If you're grappling, you may not cast any spell with somatic components, nor can you cast a spell with material/focus components unless those components are in your hand when you get grappled. Even if you can cast a spell, it requires a Concentration check with DC... well, you tell me what the DC is :)

5. You can't move while grappling. You can, however, move up to half your speed by winning an opposed grapple check against the person you're grappling. This is a standard action, not a move action. If you win, you drag your grappling opponent with you. Both of you incur AOOs for that movement, if applicable.

6. Even if you aren't the one who initiated the grapple, you can still attempt to pin your opponent.

7. Releasing the grapple is a standard action that requires an opposed grapple check, even if you were the one who initiated the grapple. If you win, you then step into any adjacent square, which presumably (though it is not stated) provokes an AOO from the guy you just released. If you're pinning an enemy, releasing the grapple becomes a free action.


Don't forget that you can use the opponents weapon against them with an opposed grapple check, provided that the weapon is light. Great for those poisoned assassin daggers!

Altogether, I find the grapple rules to be pretty straight forward. I think what makes them foreign to a lot of old school gamers is that they are a new addition to the game.

When 3.0 first came out and my gaming groups started using it, I ran an adventure which had the players use a lot of the new rules and taste how they work. After this adventure, the players understood how grappling, disarm, over run, bull rush, and other mechanics of the game worked and they didn't find it strange at all (they even initiated these special maneuvers whenever it was beneficial).
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Postby Ragorn » Mon Aug 20, 2007 3:32 pm

You can also disarm an opponent of a small item while pinning them, but they get a +4 bonus to the opposed grapple roll that precedes the disarm check... oy vey.

Grappling isn't particularly difficult to understand once you've read the rules, but a lot of the minutae are subtley different from similar rules and it's tough to keep everything straight. Like the initial AOO... if the AOO hits you, the grapple attempt fails. Disarm also provokes, but you can continue with the disarm attempt even if you're hit by the attack. Lots of things like that. The Concentration check to cast while grappled is 20+level, but the Concentration check to cast while entangled is 15+level. It's these little inconsistencies that make the rules much more difficult to get a handle on, and this stuff should be simplified in the next edition.

We had a tripper in one of our campaigns, and my epic Duskblade got in the habit of using disarm a lot. Did you know that if you cast True Strike and then attempt a disarm, that the +20 insight bonus applies to your opposed disarm check? It does :) Tripping a target requires you to roll a melee touch attack to see if you connect, but disarm doesn't make you do that. You simply declare your attempt, take your AOO, and then roll "opposed attack rolls" against your target. Thus, your "next attack roll" after casting the spell is the disarm check, and you get an astronomical bonus. I used this to disarm the BBEG of her epic artifact weapon ;)
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Postby Shevarash » Mon Aug 20, 2007 4:29 pm

Heh. The disarm/true strike trick works exactly the same way in 2.0. I'm not sure if that's a testament to the quality of our d20 port, or a target for the nerfbat...

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Postby Nokie » Mon Aug 20, 2007 6:15 pm

Ragorn wrote:
Shevarash wrote:Scout and Swashbuckler are decent dips, but base classes should be more useful than a three-level dip.


Well I'll say this: If you're running a gestalt campaign, try looking at Warlock // Scout 19/Ranger1 (1 level of ranger for the 'swift hunter' feat from complete scoundrel). Scout, IMHO, synergizes quite well with warlock.
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Postby Shevarash » Mon Aug 20, 2007 6:24 pm

Eh, Rags wrote that, not me. I don't play wacky non-core classes.
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Postby Ragorn » Mon Aug 20, 2007 7:09 pm

Nokie wrote:Well I'll say this: If you're running a gestalt campaign, try looking at Warlock // Scout 19/Ranger1 (1 level of ranger for the 'swift hunter' feat from complete scoundrel). Scout, IMHO, synergizes quite well with warlock.

Funny you should say that, I'm actually playing a multiclass Scout/Warlock in a non-gestalt campaign right now :) He works great as the party's skillmonkey, since so many of the low-level invocations involve ridiculous bonuses to important skills.
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Postby Birile » Tue Aug 21, 2007 4:33 pm

Shevarash wrote:I would like to see more advanced optional rules in further supplements, and they've actually been doing a pretty decent job at that lately with some of the stuff in PHB2, Complete XYZ, Tome of Battle, etc.


Tome of Battle is just cheese as are the tricks in Complete Scoundrel. I rather adore PHBII and most of the other Completes--but adding tricks and stances and all of that crap is, well, crap. ToB made a "regular" Fighter just about useless except for a dip for the quick feats (IMHO).
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Postby Branthur » Tue Aug 21, 2007 5:02 pm

Birile wrote:
Shevarash wrote:I would like to see more advanced optional rules in further supplements, and they've actually been doing a pretty decent job at that lately with some of the stuff in PHB2, Complete XYZ, Tome of Battle, etc.


Tome of Battle is just cheese as are the tricks in Complete Scoundrel. I rather adore PHBII and most of the other Completes--but adding tricks and stances and all of that crap is, well, crap. ToB made a "regular" Fighter just about useless except for a dip for the quick feats (IMHO).


I'm thinking that (and I could be WAY off here) ToB and things like skill tricks from CS were playtests for 4th edition. I'm guessing a lot of the ToB mechanics are going to find their way into the new fighter (if not the actual abilities). I've never actually played anything from ToB or seen it played, so I can't account for it being cheese or not.
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Postby Shevarash » Tue Aug 21, 2007 8:13 pm

I'm not a big fan of ToB either, and I haven't ported anything from it to 2.0. I do like the fact that it exists though, as it shows they were at least trying to figure out a way to spice up martial classes with new optional rules...
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Postby Guardias » Wed Aug 22, 2007 1:17 am

I loved ToB because it finally allowed me to play fighter that was as complicated as a wizard. Overall the ToB classes are equal or even a little weaker than the fighter class. Most of the ToB classes have less versatility in that they don't get the massive number of feats and ToB classes have to have more downtime than a normal fighter.
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Postby Ragorn » Wed Aug 22, 2007 6:38 am

They've now mentioned that Fighters and other martial classes will draw on some kind of "martial power pool." I don't know what they mean by that, but I think we can expect Tome of Battle to become the new standard for Fighters. I never used it either, my play group didn't want to expend the effort to accept a radically different system into our game. But I respect their effort to make martial classes useful.

Fighter was never any good, not even in core when the "best" feat available was Whirlwind Attack. PHB2 gave him a nifty feat tree, culminating in Weapon Supremacy, and there are some neat Mageslayer feats in Comp Warr. But they never gave the poor guy his due, there are only a handful of feats worth taking after level 12. The Fighter was best as a two-level dip, or a four-level dip if you were going TWF with Weapon Specialization.
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Postby Sarvis » Wed Aug 22, 2007 12:14 pm

[quote="Ragorn"]They've now mentioned that Fighters and other martial classes will draw on some kind of "martial power pool."/quote]

There's an article on Gamespy. Apparently, a bunch of ideas were ripped from MMORPGs. So yes, we can probably now expect warriors and mages to have a mana pool and all special attacks/spells will drain it and have shiney effects.
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Postby Lilira » Wed Aug 22, 2007 2:34 pm

Mmmm... best part guys!!

We don't have to play it.

Heck, I've run into probably 20 different people who refuse to budge from AD&D2E.

I like 3.5. I grew up playing 2E, and 3.5 simplified so much (bye THAC0!), and I'm not even one of those Gary's (Re: Knights of the Dinner Table) who has memorized every single rule and loophole.

Wizards can kiss my bum.. I think we're sticking with what we have. If that means we run out of source books at some point? Oh well, that's what imagination is for.
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You group-say 'my chars will carry the component on them if I can.'
Inama group-says 'hopefully they'll have some sort of volume discounts on ress items for people like you'
You group-say 'oh? Ya think? *giggle*'
Inama group-says 'they could at least implement frequent dier miles'

Suzalize group-says 'oh, eya's over weight i bet'
Guardias
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Postby Guardias » Fri Aug 24, 2007 10:41 pm

Ill be sticking with 3.5 as well. Simple enough and anything simpler just takes the fun out of the game.
I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it. *Voltaire*



The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts. *Bertrand Russel*
Gurns
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Postby Gurns » Sat Aug 25, 2007 3:35 am

Lilira
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Joined: Thu Aug 28, 2003 3:53 pm

Postby Lilira » Mon Aug 27, 2007 2:53 am

lol Gurns
~\o--Lilira Shadowlyre--o/~

You group-say 'my chars will carry the component on them if I can.'
Inama group-says 'hopefully they'll have some sort of volume discounts on ress items for people like you'
You group-say 'oh? Ya think? *giggle*'
Inama group-says 'they could at least implement frequent dier miles'

Suzalize group-says 'oh, eya's over weight i bet'
moritheil
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Posts: 4845
Joined: Wed Jan 31, 2001 6:01 am

Postby moritheil » Wed Oct 10, 2007 3:26 pm

Birile wrote:ToB made a "regular" Fighter just about useless except for a dip for the quick feats (IMHO).


Of course, the verdict for most powergamers was that Fighter was useless except for bonus feats long before ToB came out . . . so to them there wasn't that much of a change.
Yotus group-says 'special quest if you type hi dragon'

Shevarash OOC: 'I feature only the finest mammary glands.'

Silena group-says 'he was so fat and juicy..couldnt resist'
Ragorn
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Joined: Mon Jan 29, 2001 6:01 am

Postby Ragorn » Wed Oct 10, 2007 5:27 pm

Fighter is a 2-level base class.

Although, to be fair, Wizard is a 5-level base class.
- Ragorn
Shar: Leave the moaning to the people who have real issues to moan about like rangers or newbies.
Corth: Go ask out a chick that doesn't wiggle her poon in people's faces for a living.
moritheil
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Postby moritheil » Fri Oct 12, 2007 3:39 am

Ragorn wrote:Fighter is a 2-level base class.

Although, to be fair, Wizard is a 5-level base class.


Well, Cleric is a 4-level base class as normally seen, but few tend to complain that they lack power. I'm pretty sure that comparison breaks down :P
Yotus group-says 'special quest if you type hi dragon'

Shevarash OOC: 'I feature only the finest mammary glands.'

Silena group-says 'he was so fat and juicy..couldnt resist'
Ragorn
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Posts: 4732
Joined: Mon Jan 29, 2001 6:01 am

Postby Ragorn » Fri Oct 12, 2007 2:09 pm

moritheil wrote:Well, Cleric is a 4-level base class as normally seen, but few tend to complain that they lack power. I'm pretty sure that comparison breaks down :P

Well yes, but only because many prestige classes continue to advance Cleric spellcasting :)

That's one of the breakdown factors between casters and melee. Casters rely on spell progression for the bulk of their power, melee classes rely on class features. And what happens when you prestige? Spellcasting continues to progress, but class features don't.

If there were a Fighter PrC that gave you extra damage, fast movement, bonuses to Jump and Climb, and still allowed you to choose a Fighter bonus feat every other level, that would go a long way toward making Fighter a viable base class.
- Ragorn
Shar: Leave the moaning to the people who have real issues to moan about like rangers or newbies.
Corth: Go ask out a chick that doesn't wiggle her poon in people's faces for a living.

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