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Discussing Magic 
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Prophet of Tzeentch
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Well I have my doubts about the whole thing, but I would be happy to test it out, I have been known to be mistaken before.

Personally I think we may be overcomplicating this, could it be possible to simply add some low level spells to the skills list and give each a manna rating with one of the skills being increased manna? I don't have a lot of experience with this kind of thing so tell me if I am just being naive.

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Tue Jan 12, 2010 11:30 am
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Drainial wrote:
Well I have my doubts about the whole thing, but I would be happy to test it out, I have been known to be mistaken before.

Personally I think we may be overcomplicating this, could it be possible to simply add some low level spells to the skills list and give each a manna rating with one of the skills being increased manna? I don't have a lot of experience with this kind of thing so tell me if I am just being naive.


I wouldn't say you were being naive... I think simple is good. Looking back at the discussion so far I think we could indeed be overcomplicating it. I have my doubts too, more in that we would stuggle to make it work than that it was a bad idea.

So, perhaps something like Drainial stated?


Tue Jan 12, 2010 6:32 pm
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What if we made the disciplines themselves skills? i.e. Level 1 Fire magic would allow weak fire balls, or conjuring a flame to allow light, but level 5 would allow for larger, exploding fireballs or lights you could let hang in the air and follow you around.

Make the descriptions general as per the other skills instead of deals like: Fireball. Mana 5. Damage 6.

I'd also suggest a mana skill too (as per Drainial), but I'd also suggest only having a few 'lores'. Say;
Destruction (fireballs, dark bolts, lightning etc.)
Illusion (buff skills for seeing in the dark, or hiding in the shade.)
Mysticism (skills like levitation or opening locks.)
Healing (basic healing and protection skills.)
Mana (how much power you can draw on.)

Something like that, where the terms are nice and broad?

The only problem I could see here is potentialy someone having a spell for every circumstance, but I reckon a good character would be limited to related skills by the player; so no casting a fireball, while levitating the prisoner out of the cage, before sending a telepathic message to the cover team, if you please. :P


Last edited by Desmodeus on Wed Jan 13, 2010 2:15 am, edited 1 time in total.



Tue Jan 12, 2010 6:58 pm
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Well if someone manages to accrue that many skills then they are in an advanced group and are missing out on other skills. If the magic is balanced it shouldn't be a problem.

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Tue Jan 12, 2010 10:39 pm
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True enough... and I suppose it's not as though we're humans and have to concentrate on one lore...

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Wed Jan 13, 2010 2:14 am
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Looking at this part of the creation process:

Quote:
If you are a Shade, your minimum Intelligence has to be a 3.
If you are a Warrior, your minimum Strength has to be a 3.
If you are a Trainee, your minimum Dexterity has to be a 3.


I feel it might be better, if a mage became available, to have it as follows;

If you are a Shade, your minimum Dexterity has to be a 3.
If you are a Warrior, your minimum Strength has to be a 3.
If you are a Disciple, your minimum Weapon Skill has to be a 3.
If you are a Mage, your minimum Intelligence has to be a 3.


I feel Disciples of Khaine (a term many now use to cover trainee) would rely on Weapon Skill more than Dexterity, just as shades would rely on Dexterity more than Intelligence. This also opens up Intelligence as the base minimum for the Mage, a class that would clearly rely on power of mind over anything else.



I know this is just a longshot too, but it could then open the possibility of another class with a base minimum of Toughness 3. The obvious choice would be Corsair, although I'm not too sure they would require a class of their own as many Warriors write in their background that they are indeed Corsairs. It could work to make it a seperate class though, giving a sea dragon cloak, hand weapons and repeater handbow. Skills of Shipmastery could be made available.

Just an idea.


Wed Jan 13, 2010 7:00 pm
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I wouldn't say it was a problem if two classes had the same base requirement, a minimum of 3 isn't really taxing anyway. My current character's stats (still at their basic) could be used for any of the classes, including the new additions. If you felt changing it was more appropriate lore-wise, I couldn't see why not? I doubt many (if any) players will have useful stats at 2, even if their character is new.

It could be an idea for later, but perhaps focussing on the mage 1st; taking on too much at once would be a bad idea. Besides, we could draw on any wisdom gleaned from creating the mage for any further additions.


Wed Jan 13, 2010 8:32 pm
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Desmodeus wrote:
I wouldn't say it was a problem if two classes had the same base requirement, a minimum of 3 isn't really taxing anyway. My current character's stats (still at their basic) could be used for any of the classes, including the new additions. If you felt changing it was more appropriate lore-wise, I couldn't see why not? I doubt many (if any) players will have useful stats at 2, even if their character is new.

It could be an idea for later, but perhaps focussing on the mage 1st; taking on too much at once would be a bad idea. Besides, we could draw on any wisdom gleaned from creating the mage for any further additions.


Agreed, I wasn't suggesting we discuss it now but was merely stating it as a possiblity for the future. I personally don't feel it is even needed, was warrior covers corsair, but it was just food for thought.

As for the Mage, I feel Intelligence is the way to go. I don't have a problem with more than one class having Intelligence as the base stat, but I feel the othe two should be switched anyway. As you pointed out though, most people have stats of at least 3 in every option anyway. Perhaps therefore, the minimum for said stats should be 4, rather than 3.

But enough discussion on that. This topic is about the Mage ;)

How about something like this then...


Character Class: Mage
- Minimum Intelligence 4
- Starting equipment: dagger, cloak
- Starting skills: Draw Mana

Skills,

DRAW MANA
prerequisites: Mage.
Allows the bearer to draw on energy from the winds of magic. Having this skill allows them a basic grasp of magic, and they can use it to summon the energies needed to cast other spells.
With this spell, they can roll a D6 to draw X amount of Mana at any time. This summoned Mana is then used to cast another spell. If they do not draw enough mana for the other spell, the other spell fails to cast.
Levelling up in this Skill allows for +1 to the D6 roll each time.

Can Pick ONE spell to also have. Other spells must be learned in-game.

and some example spells...

FIREBALL
Mana 5, Power 6.
Medium Range.
The Mage summons a ball of fire and hurls it at their foes, burning all that it hits.
Mage must summon at least 5 Mana before they can cast the spell.

HEAL WOUND
Mana 4
Short Range.
The Mage summons the energy of Life, which can be transfered to his or his companions' wound and remove it.
Mage completely heals a recent wound to one member of the group.

OPEN LOCK
Mana 2
Short Range.
The Mage summons a small amount of energy and tries to reverse the mechanisms of a nearby lock
If successfully cast, the lock is unlocked.


Wed Jan 13, 2010 8:47 pm
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I had hoped for more general spell descriptions, but no doubt this system would work. I suppose this way limits their skill as mages to 'total begginer' though, which was the idea.

Next step more spells?

FIREY BLAST
Prerequisites; Fireball, Intelligence 5
Mana 8, Power 9
Medium Range
A more powerfull burning missile, the Mage must expend more energy but is rewarded with more destructive potential.
The Fiery Blast 'bursts' on impact and thus effects foes standing near the target.

LANTERN
Prerequisites; Mage
Mana 2
Self Range
The Mage draws the winds of magic into his hand, illuminating his way.
If successfully cast, the caster for all intents is now holding a lamp which can't be dropped nor occupies his hand. i.e. A two handed weapon may still be used alongside the spell, but the erraticaly waving light may prove more of a hindrence than a help when used in this way.

SPARK
Prerequisites; Mage
Mana 5, Power 7
Medium Range
Arcs of power leap from the Mage's fingers, earthing through his foes.
When using this spell remember how electricity behaves near water or that long, metal sword your ally is waving through the air...
Higher levels will leap between nearby enemies (and allies, terrain or anything else conductive!)

What about a method for miscasting? Nothing horribley gribbly or no one will ever play the Mage for fear of an early grave, but something to balance the high end spells perhaps? Maybe mistargetting or losing concentration?


Wed Jan 13, 2010 9:16 pm
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I think that that is too restrictive, I think that this should be more along the lines of a warrior/shade/trainee who can also use a bit of magic. Much in the same way as said classes could learn to be acrobatic.

I think the spell system would work perfectly well, but it might be more interesting to have them vauger and allow the players to do a little inovating. Take fire for example, just say fire and leave out the ball, sudenly there are a whole host of oppertunities from blinding enemies with a brief flash of blinding light to arson attempts, and yes they can still try and throw a ball of fire if they gather enough manna. Leave it more in the hands of the players and the mods I say, it might be five manna to hurl a ball of fire, but a few sparks onto those paper documents... well that could easily just be one.

I supose it depends on whether we create a whole new class (as seems to be the popular idea) or not.

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Wed Jan 13, 2010 11:33 pm
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Drainial, I'm really voting for both, with all the classes having access to the simplest spells (i.e. the lock tweaking or light making skills) and the Mages having access to the lot (leaving fireballs and lighting bolts Mage-only.)

I also liked the less strict usage you're suggesting for the spells, but I reckon the reason Kinslayer keeps coming back to the 'listed spells' idea might be pure simplicity.

Say we gradiate it? The levels will have pre-requisites that must be met before unlocking, but thereafter the character can choose which level of spell he or she casts? This of course would require Kinslayer's mana skill to lose its prerequisite of 'Mage.' For example:

CONJURE FLAME
Level 1, 2, 3, 4
Mana 1, 3, 5, 8
Power 1, 4, 6, 9
The Mage conjures and manipulates magical flames, shaping them for his purpose.
Level 1: Touch Range. Sparks gutter from the Mage's palms. (Int 4)
Level 2: Touch Range. Curls of flame envelope the Mage's fists and drip from his fingers. (Int 4)
Level 3: Short Range. The Mage throws out his hands, a short burst of heat flashing out before him. (Mage only)
Level 4: Medium Range. The Mage conjures a ball of fire and hurls it at his foes. (Mage only)
Level 5: Medium Range. The Mage launches a large ball of flames at his target to burst over its target. (Mage only, Int 5)

The Mod who rolls for the spell's success can also bear in mind the actual dice roll and alter the spell's effectivness as he or she sees fit; So a spell that just makes the mana cost might struggle to do its job, whereas one with a surplus might be more vigourous than intended?


Last edited by Desmodeus on Fri Jan 15, 2010 6:24 am, edited 1 time in total.



Thu Jan 14, 2010 2:06 am
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I was thinking perhaps each time a spell caster wants to use a spell they should be able to state how much manna they wish to spend on it at the same time as stating the intent. If the intended thing is simple and they spend more manna it will be more likely to be successful, likewise they can try something big with less manna but they will be unlikely to get it right.

If we say as a generic fact that each turn every player gains 1 manna (which most people cannot use, owing to a lack of training) but that the maximum a normal character can hold at any one time is, for example, 3, the spell caster can then try and put 3 manna into any effect with their chosen skill they please. 3 would be more than enough to light a lantern, you might manage to set someone’s clothes on fire, but at the same time you can spend less for a less dramatic effect.

As a skill separate from the disciplines we could have a skill which simply increases the maximum manna an individual is able to hold at one time (and therefore the power and complexity of spells they can attempt.)

Yes a list of set spells would be simpler, but it would also leave less room for innovation and bright ideas which I think give an RPG a little more flare.

Just my ideas on how this could possibly work, if we decide to do it.

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Thu Jan 14, 2010 3:14 pm
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Yeah, I know what you're saying. The gradiated idea was my way of trying to get the players' likely description defying ways of using the ability to (in my example) conjure fire to have some form of structure to it. It also gives a method for growth during the game's progression and limits the number of powerful spells the character knows.

You'd need to learn 3 new skills to be able to launch proper fireballs this way, but if you just had to learn the 'Fire', or 'Lightning' skill, then the same Mage now has two powerful spells plus room for another...

I do want to stress that the little italic text in the descriptions aren't "This is what the spell does, no more or less." deals. Your fireball could be a spear or a sheet of flame, you could maintain that blast of heat as a barrier, you could command the flames on your hands to spread, forming a burning suit of armour.

These skills can be used to represent anything from burning a message in one's hand, to cauterising an ally's wound, to charring a design into wood when one is bored. You could hold the sparks in your hand to cook that lump of meat you're holding, you could use short blasts of heat to dry your clothes.



Though the idea of constant mana growth and a max storage mimics the way magic works in Warhammer, it carries the problem of needing a miscast system (they are begginers after all, they'll make mistakes) or Mages spending turns doing nothing useful while the mana builds. The RPG method makes this system too slow in my eyes.


Fri Jan 15, 2010 6:21 am
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What something is for depends a great deal upon what people think it is for, if your description specifies something allot of people will accept that as what it does, make it broader and you encourage broader thinking.

If we have a separate mage class then the last objection has some merit, but in that case we can say that mages have greater max manna to begin with, yes they might end up doing nothing for a couple of turns, but only if they blow all their manna on one big spell, if they only use two-three a turn, get one back each turn and have a max of 6 then they shouldn't have all that many occasions during combat were they can't do anything magical, and there is always the option of smacking someone over the head with the big stick they are carrying.

That said I am still against a separate class for mages, I just can’t get over the question of balance, a mage should be able to rip holes in regiments, even a level one can throw out spells killing five or six rank and file troops, I don't see how that can be balanced inside an RPG.

As for miscasts, leave it up to the mod as punishment for bad posting or over ambitious magic attempts.

Really I think there is only one thing we can do at this point, we need to set up a test group with at least one person being a specified mage, others taking a magic skill (we will have to bend the rules a little I am thinking) and still others taking no magical skills (they should probably be allowed another skill to keep things balanced in the group).

Talk is all well and good; we need to see if any of this is practical in game.

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Fri Jan 15, 2010 1:06 pm
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That's a fair point... Changing the descriptions would probably allay that though.

CONJURE FLAME
Level 1, 2, 3, 4
Mana 1, 3, 5, 8
Power 1, 4, 6, 9
The Mage conjures and manipulates magical flames, shaping them for his purpose, be it smiting his enemies or drying his rain-soaked cloak.
Level 1: Touch Range. Sparks gutter from the Mage's palms, warming them and igniting kindling or destroying secret messages. (Int 4)
Level 2: Touch Range. Curls of flame envelope the Mage's fists and drip from his fingers, crawling along his arms to envelope his body or shaping themselves into a weapon. (Int 4)
Level 3: Short Range. The Mage throws out his hands, a burst of heat flashing out before him to stun enemies or hang in the air as a barrier. (Mage only)
Level 4: Medium Range. The Mage conjures a projectile of fire and hurls it at his foes. (Mage only)
Level 5: Medium Range. The Mage launches a large ball, spear or dart of flames at his target to burst on impact. (Mage only, Int 5)

Any better? Or should a blanket statment of "The spell descriptions are mere examples of what the spell can do, don't let this hamper your ingenuity!" simply be added to the Magic section added to the rules?

Ah... Ok, I see how that would work, it would punish a mage being careless too and make him or her think about what spells to use. It would stop non-Mage's needing to learn 2 skills to cast spells as well (the spell plus Draw Mana).

Yeah, the Mages are meant to be 'Level 0' Wizards, hence why my suggested equivalent to the 1st spell in Lore of Fire is the Level 5 Conjure Flame spell with an Intelligence 5 and Mage only requirment to learn... That's between 3 and 4 level-ups to achieve the skill, and that's not even counting increasing the mana storage enough to use it.

If, using your mana method (by the way; mana or manna?), and the Mage's mana storage starts capped at 6 as you suggest, he or she still needs to increase it by 2 to even use (in my example) the Level 5 fireball after it's been learned, and even then that adds a lot of downtime as the mana recharges for another spell.

Basically, it's pretty hard to become a powerful mage without a good deal of time put into it; you'd have to be in quite an advanced group with a limited skill set to have the maximum level in any spell and be able to use it.

Mods handling miscasts is as good a system as any (no work for us either! :p).

Agreed, but we're only really reaching agreement on the most basic parts of the system at this point. Once we're all agreed on a working system we can start fleshing out spells and start a test group.


Fri Jan 15, 2010 2:33 pm
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I think the concept of a level 1 mage in Warhammer, who can indeed kill several enemies with a simple spell, is one of a well trained character who has begun mastering their gift. In the RPG our Mages would just be rogues with no real training other than what they have taught themselves. In Warhammer terms they would be level 0.2 mages, or whatever you want to think. Thus a class would be a bit more balanced, since you would basically be a dark elf warrior with less military training but a slight gift for the arcane.

As for keeping it more open and in keeping to Warhammer fluff then, I have come up with this:

8 New Skills, as follows:

Power of Aqshy (fire) - the character has a basic grasp on the fire element.
Power of Chamon (metal) - the character has the power to affect metals.
Power of Ulgu (shadow) - the character can twist shadows with their mind.
Power of Ghur (beasts) - the character has an unnatural affect on beasts.
Power of Azyr (heavens) - the character can call to the skies for power.
Power of Hysh (light) - the character can conjure light to expel the darkness.
Power of Ghyran (life) - the character can manipulate wounds with the mind.
Power of Shyish (death) - the character can summon the energies of death.


The descriptions here are VERY open. It doesn't state what will happen when used, as this is up to the player. If their character had learned the Power of Aqshy spell, they could manipulate fire to burn a letter or light a candle, or if more advanced to summon a fireball. I think it is a good idea to let the group mod decide on Miscasts should the player be too bold and try something out of their league, or post badly.


All elven character could have access to learning these spells. A Mage class could be created, who starts with one of these spells already learned.

Each 'Power' / Skill could be learned by anyone, and then a Mage could improve to lvl 2.

At level 2 the player has a much wider grasp on the chosen Wind and can, for example, conjure fireballs rather than simply light candles.

Mana could be drawn each time a spell wanted to be cast simply by the mod rolling a D6. If they wanted to try and cast a fireball whilst only having level 1 Aqshy, he could deem they need a roll of 6 to succeed. If they are a level 2 Aqshy Rouge Mage and simply want to ignite a candle, he could deem they only need to score a 2+ on his dice.


This covers pretty much everything too.

Want to light a candle? Aqshy.
Want to open a lock? Chamon
Want to heal a wound? Ghyran
Want to make lightning strike? Azyr
Want to tame a wild horse? Ulgu


Last edited by Kinslayer on Fri Jan 15, 2010 10:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.



Fri Jan 15, 2010 5:44 pm
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That seems like a perfectly good system, I have no problems with it. I am still not entierly convinced that a mage will be balanced, possibly they might be too weak under these curent preposed rules, but for a trial run they seem good.

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Fri Jan 15, 2010 10:16 pm
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Alright then, so let's playtest this and see what happens. I don't mind modding a test group if desired?

I'm thinking a group with one non-Mage player with no powers, one non-Mage player with a power skill, a Mage with 2 different lvl 1 powers, and a Mage with a single lvl 2 power.

Thoughts?

Who wants in on the playtesting? (I guess anyone can apply!)


Fri Jan 15, 2010 10:26 pm
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I have no objections to the mix, I would like to be part of the play testing seeing as I don't have a group to play in at the moment anyway. For preference I would go for the non mage with a power skill but I don't realy mind.

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Last edited by Drainial on Sat Jan 16, 2010 10:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.



Fri Jan 15, 2010 11:55 pm
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Alrighty then. See here: http://www.druchii.net/viewtopic.php?t=64379


Sat Jan 16, 2010 12:47 pm
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Can I just charge in here suddenly after being absent for half the discussion and say: I have a perfectly appropriate idea that would accomodate not changing the current statistics of the other classes.

If you are a Mage, your minimum Toughness has to be 3.

As mentioned before, in Warhammer Magic, if you were to have lower than 3 Toughness expect to be swiftly absorbed and obliterated by the warp when you attempt to use magic.

And I think we still need to address the Intelligence issue. If Intelligence is the only statistic a Mage needs then giving those Intelligence reqs for magic Levels seems quite considerably unfair. No Mage won't give himself I5. What if we make the other skills more involved:

Intelligence affects how many skills you can learn.
Toughness affects how likely you are to get backlash from the warp.

And certain spells can have Strength and Dexterity requirements for them, DEX for elaborate somatics and STR for force involved in the casting of the spell.

Hmmmmmm, that unfortunately does not solve our problem. With 18 points you could still go 5, 5, 5, 1, 2 and not harm your character's effectiveness.

'tis a dilemma.

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Sat Jan 16, 2010 6:42 pm
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I think you are over looking the fact that at the end of the day a mage is still going to be in combat on a fairly regular basis, even if not of his own free will. Most shades rarely want to get into hand to hand, but they do anyway.

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Sat Jan 16, 2010 10:06 pm
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More food for thought I guess; the playtesting is on Kinslayer's last game-system related post. If any modifications are needed we'll probably be back (If not I'll be adding Ulgu or Ghur skills when I can!)

Oh! Quick question: If I wanted to buff my fighting speed or strength, that would be Lore of Life, yes? (Think of the twin shades in the Malus books.)


Sun Jan 17, 2010 11:12 am
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I would think Lore of Life was more about healing but could be used to boost your own powers. Lore of Beasts can also be used to buff yourself up a little, just based on the idea of the Bears Anger spell (although a rouge mage would only produce a lesser 'version' of the spell).

I like the idea of basing their requirements on Toughness actually. I agree with Drainial though, that a Mage will be in combat as often as they are not, and that they so would need to have good all-around stats like everybody else.

Minimum 3/4 Intelligence on the skills then, and Minimum 3 Toughness for the Mage class?

We'll keep things updated as playtesting unfolds.


Sun Jan 17, 2010 11:45 pm
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Executioner
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Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2009 9:22 am
Posts: 199
Location: Glasgow, Scotland, UK
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Well, if Ghur has such buffs attached, I'm happy; it fits my character very well indeed (for later games of course).

Another random idea (I may plague you with these): If one had Level 2 Shadow and Level 2 Light, could one then create illusory objects?

I suppose by extention what I'm asking is; As druchii who can combine the winds, can we use two lores at once for greater effect? Obviously it'll be extremely risky for the low level casters we have here, but you see where I'm going.

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Anast: Ws4 S3 T3 D4 I4 0G
Short Sword, Repeater Crossbow, Shade Cloak, lock-picks, choke-wire
Skills: Basic Stealth, Wilderness Lore


Mon Jan 18, 2010 12:54 am
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