Last visit was: It is currently Sun Oct 21, 2018 8:26 pm


All times are UTC - 5 hours




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 24 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: Re: To Slip the Surly Bonds of Earth
PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2014 12:53 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2013 10:40 am
Posts: 2046
Let me clarify a few things...

I never stated or implied that I wouldn't have the villains use the spells at their disposal. I agree that it's important to challenge players and characters with new threats (be it blindness, the need for ranged weapons, or the need to flee a combat rather than die to overwhelming odds). The answer was more to the paraphrased question "do you have all the shamans use diminish senses and blind everyone at the start of the fight?"

If the unfortunate happens that you have the shamans go first and everyone is blinded, that will certainly inspire a lot of terror in the group but mechanically it is likely to spell TPK for the table. Even if someone has Restore Senses, they have to do themselves first, then slowly restore for the others. If someone's using Fate to Unravel the Thread, the chances of success are very low, since they probably don't have a casting stat to add to the roll and are trying to beat numbers like 22-23. Then, to further the 'villains will not softball', there's no reason why immediately upon a Diminish Senses being dispelled why it wouldn't be put back on right away by one of the shamans while the others attack.

Motivation is important and I always use that to determine what tactics the enemy uses. I just try to temper that with player enjoyment. It really is NO fun if all characters are spending actions for about 12 ticks just trying to get unblinded. Maybe you will consider that 'softballing' on the part of the GM but I use other methods to increase the challenge, along with utilizing the villain's abilities.

I have found through many (many!) years of organized play that the perception that GM's are trying to kill tables of players, whether it's true or not, often leads to friction that erodes the fun for everyone. This is particularly true during BI's and other events (for all systems, not just Arcanis), where there is a perceived (real or not) notion that GM's are competing to kill players. In those cases, the players become very defensive and every decision or ruling becomes overly scrutinized and nitpicked and the 'go with the flow' that usually occurs when things are running smoothly ends.

So in summary, I agree we need to challenge players. However, while having your 8 casters with diminish senses blind everyone on Tick 1 may be a great tactic if the enemies are trying to escape, but it will frustrate most tables if the goal is for the enemies to kill the PC's. I certainly don't apologize for how I roll, but I understand others may do it differently.

John

_________________
- John Bellando

Kelb'Bakari Masalio, Dark-kin Altherian Corsair, Gentleman Archaeologist, and Wandering Bard
"The highest compliment an Altherian can pay you is to shoot you with his flintlock. It means you were worth the expense."


Top
Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: To Slip the Surly Bonds of Earth
PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2014 12:54 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2013 10:40 am
Posts: 2046
deviknyte wrote:
SamhainIA wrote:
Wilcoxcon:

at the chroniclers discretion, one can spend a fate point to "do the impossible" to gain temporary use of a feat, ive seen this used very effectively by many people

That feat could be "Learn spell: Unravel the Thread" or Restore Senses

and if your in a party with no casters.... well your going to have other problems

How long do you get that talent maneuver or spell? I've had GMs say an action and others say a scene.


I've always ruled "For the action". I've never seen a GM rule it "for the scene" nor do I think that's a reasonable expectation of the Fate Point as really no other use (besides negating wound penalties) lasts for the scene.

John

_________________
- John Bellando

Kelb'Bakari Masalio, Dark-kin Altherian Corsair, Gentleman Archaeologist, and Wandering Bard
"The highest compliment an Altherian can pay you is to shoot you with his flintlock. It means you were worth the expense."


Top
Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: To Slip the Surly Bonds of Earth
PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2014 1:00 pm 

Joined: Sun Nov 24, 2013 9:12 pm
Posts: 609
I'm with John on this. Josh and Matt that kind of offensive thinking is what leads to people feeling like they have to optimize and that arms race. I'm surprised to hear that from you guys. You have to adjust to the party that is in front of you. Especially in a shared campaign. Some people do have have an all elorii table or an all Ss'ressen table ready for each convention. Done don't have control over who is sitting at their con table and not each table is going to be optimal for certain combat, social, or skill challenges. You can't just tell people to go all out and take cheap shoots at people.


Top
Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: To Slip the Surly Bonds of Earth
PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2014 1:40 pm 

Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2013 8:36 am
Posts: 1548
John, its breaking the rules, its up to the chronicler, I've always treated it as a Divine bestowal (in the case of divine characters)

Devin, when did this become, about taking cheap shots at people. I'm talking about way to counter tactics. my position is that this tactic should be easily countered, and if the players aren't coming up with that counter then maybe the chronicler should drop em some hints instead of creampuffing them through a combat.

Attacking people in different ways is Precisely the thing that is need to break up optimization in one direction or another. Attack the glass part of the glass cannon not the cannon part.

_________________
--Josh Elliott
Oswald val'Inares V, The True King of Milandir
Harvester Lord of the Eastern Fields of Iowa, and the dominions of Coralville and Dubuque


Top
Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: To Slip the Surly Bonds of Earth
PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2014 2:14 pm 

Joined: Sun Nov 24, 2013 9:12 pm
Posts: 609
Casting 8 diminished senses right in the a row is a cheap shot. And telling a non caster they can fate point for a chance to remove it isn't a solution. The OP's question is legitimate. You can't just blind the entire party atev ery table. Sure you could do that to mine, but we have 6 casters. You have to adjust to your table.


Top
Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: To Slip the Surly Bonds of Earth
PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2014 2:21 pm 

Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2013 8:36 am
Posts: 1548
Devin, I'm not denying it can be a dick move. I'm saying that it should not be discarded out of hand as a valid tactic.

In theory every party should be able to CRUSH some kind of encounter, and in theory every party should be DESTROYED by a different kind of encounter, its all in the luck of the draw

_________________
--Josh Elliott
Oswald val'Inares V, The True King of Milandir
Harvester Lord of the Eastern Fields of Iowa, and the dominions of Coralville and Dubuque


Top
Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: To Slip the Surly Bonds of Earth
PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2014 4:00 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2013 1:06 am
Posts: 1828
Location: Portland OR
I'm the older D&D days these kinds of encounters were called "Save or Suck" encounters. As one might expect they were unpopular with the player base and hashed out endlessly on other forums. Mostly I disliked them as a player too.

I appreciate the discussion. Many interesting points to respond to.

As a note about Fate: yes I allow fate to temporarily gain access to a talent that you don't have...as long as you meet the perquisites. If your dumb mook of a PC has never paid more than lip service to a temple suddenly and has never cracked a book in his her or her life ... and suddenly wants to start casting spells ... At my table that PC is out of luck. IMO using fate that way is just another kind of softballing. I wouldn't let a vanilla wizard use a fate point to take murderous precision either.

The party I'll by GMing for will have one or two spellcasters. No one will have restore senses. The one caster I can count on for sure is a Neurite and his player may be grumpy if all he gets to do during the fight is eat strain to free people from blindness. I am guessing other people will be grumpy going through most of the fight blinded.

If there are clever tactics that people can think of that the party might employ I would love to hear them. At the moment I don't know of any.

I am not especially interested in creampuffing anybody, but at the same time I either think the module author did not think through the implications of this fight ... Or if he did then it happens that i do not like the way this encounter is written. Especially since the module also says to kill the PCs if they are somehow all defeated.

_________________
Eric Gorman

AKA Ambassador Tukufu, man of letters, tomb raider and Master Sword Sage
. . . and Sir Szymon val'Holryn, Order of the Phoenix
Formerly Sir Jaeger val'Holryn. Weilder of the Holy Avenger: Thonanos. Gave his soul to help free King Noen


Top
Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: To Slip the Surly Bonds of Earth
PostPosted: Fri Jan 10, 2014 2:52 am 

Joined: Fri Oct 11, 2013 5:01 am
Posts: 83
Make the spells harder: is there a blindness advanced spell that the shamans could try to cast instead so that they have more of a failure chance? Drop their skills a small amount so that they cannot auto cast it? Give them a different spell to use instead? Let the players use cover to avoid line of sight? Depending upon how the encounter starts can they back off and try again later? Can they set up an ambush? Can they parley their way out of the combat or to chance the conditions of it? Is there a character that represents something (holy symbol, ethnicity etc) that will incline the shamans not to kill everyone but rather just vanquish them? Could a time limit be imposed so that if they aren't dead by 24 ticks the enemys get called away to more pressing matters?


Top
Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: To Slip the Surly Bonds of Earth
PostPosted: Fri Jan 10, 2014 7:51 am 
User avatar

Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2013 10:40 am
Posts: 2046
SamhainIA wrote:
John, its breaking the rules, its up to the chronicler, I've always treated it as a Divine bestowal (in the case of divine characters)


Never said it wasn't up to the chronicler, just that I've never been at a table, including ones you've run, where a Fate Point gave access to a Talent, Spell, etc. for an entire scene. It's always been 'one time'. If other Chroniclers want to give access for a scene, that's great! It just shouldn't be an expectation.

John

_________________
- John Bellando

Kelb'Bakari Masalio, Dark-kin Altherian Corsair, Gentleman Archaeologist, and Wandering Bard
"The highest compliment an Altherian can pay you is to shoot you with his flintlock. It means you were worth the expense."


Top
Offline Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: To Slip the Surly Bonds of Earth
PostPosted: Fri Jan 10, 2014 10:50 am 

Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2013 8:36 am
Posts: 1548
john you misunderstand me, in saying that "its up to the chronicler" is that its a point for negotiation Or for leniency.

expectations on anything are a bad idea

_________________
--Josh Elliott
Oswald val'Inares V, The True King of Milandir
Harvester Lord of the Eastern Fields of Iowa, and the dominions of Coralville and Dubuque


Top
Offline Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 24 posts ]  Moderators: james.zwiers, PCI Eric Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3  Next

All times are UTC - 5 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group
Theme created StylerBB.net & kodeki