Spreadin' the word

Medieval fantasy mechs powered by steam, magic, or the labor of a thousand slaves.

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Arek
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Spreadin' the word

Post by Arek » Thu Feb 14, 2008 9:03 pm

On another forum I keep up with, someone asked if anyone knew any interesting settings.

I'm sure you can figure what I suggested.

I ended up sketching in the realities of mechs vs. magic in terms of cost-effectiveness, and pointing them to the freebies section.

A couple of people have mentioned some interest. If they ask questions, I'll answer 'em, and let this board know the results.

(I'm actually pretty interested in this, because that board contains a pretty hardboiled bunch of people. They are often pretty abrasive but, oddly, they're never actually malicious.

...Oh, and some of the people here could powergame a commoner. I've certainly seen a build to make a wizard who can beat Krakens and Dire Bears in Grapple checks.

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Wyatt
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Post by Wyatt » Fri Feb 15, 2008 7:24 am

I actually think Dragonmech's best strengths are its new classes and mechanics more than the actual setting. When I saw it, I was more immediately attracted to the rules for mechs and steam powers and engines, more than the rest. But I'm a very homebrew-exclusive kind of guy. Don't play any published settings for the most part...

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Post by mythfish » Fri Feb 15, 2008 8:08 am

Wyatt wrote:I actually think Dragonmech's best strengths are its new classes and mechanics more than the actual setting. When I saw it, I was more immediately attracted to the rules for mechs and steam powers and engines, more than the rest. But I'm a very homebrew-exclusive kind of guy. Don't play any published settings for the most part...
See, I thought the exact opposite when I first read through it. I thought a lot of the mechanics were a bit clunky, but I loved the setting. And I too am a mostly homebrew sort of guy. DragonMech is the only pre-published D&D setting I've DMed since the early days of 2nd ed.
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Arek
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Post by Arek » Fri Feb 15, 2008 1:00 pm

mythfish wrote:
Wyatt wrote:I actually think Dragonmech's best strengths are its new classes and mechanics more than the actual setting. When I saw it, I was more immediately attracted to the rules for mechs and steam powers and engines, more than the rest. But I'm a very homebrew-exclusive kind of guy. Don't play any published settings for the most part...
See, I thought the exact opposite when I first read through it. I thought a lot of the mechanics were a bit clunky, but I loved the setting. And I too am a mostly homebrew sort of guy. DragonMech is the only pre-published D&D setting I've DMed since the early days of 2nd ed.

What's really interesting is that I like both sides of Dragonmech--the mechanics help break the superiority of magic by letting you get better results for a much cheaper price, and the details about the setting of Highpoint are very worthwhile and enjoyable.

In the case on the forum, I was explaining more of the mechanics.

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Post by Arek » Sat Feb 16, 2008 3:42 pm

Okay, if anyone who's actually involved in Goodman Games reads this:

I'm about to slap up a Dragonmech review/info thread. I'd like to get an okay before I start describing the actual continent of Highpoint and why this setting has mechs and steam technology and the like. I mean, it's not like I'm going to reproduce Second Age of walkers for the, but I'd like to be able to give them some context to place the other information in.

Things I'd like to mention:

-Lunar rain and the lunar creatures
-A summary of the positions of the major races on Highpoint (elves, dwarves, humans, etc).
-The Dragonmech classes (general descriptions, although I'd like to sketch in how steam powers work.)
-Some random examples of technology and equipment (weapons, armor)
-Mechs and their benefits/problems.

Someone's already said he's interested in the setting after hearing a bit more about it.

So I'm asking for permission because it's polite (and I think a couple of the things I plan to mention are technically part of Product Identity. Lawyers scare me, so I'm doing my best to avoid them).

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Wyatt
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Post by Wyatt » Sat Feb 16, 2008 3:58 pm

mythfish wrote:
Wyatt wrote:I actually think Dragonmech's best strengths are its new classes and mechanics more than the actual setting. When I saw it, I was more immediately attracted to the rules for mechs and steam powers and engines, more than the rest. But I'm a very homebrew-exclusive kind of guy. Don't play any published settings for the most part...
See, I thought the exact opposite when I first read through it. I thought a lot of the mechanics were a bit clunky, but I loved the setting. And I too am a mostly homebrew sort of guy. DragonMech is the only pre-published D&D setting I've DMed since the early days of 2nd ed.
Yeah, some of them are. But they provide a really nice baseline. I'd end up chewing rubber in an asylum if I had to come up with something like steam power and mechs entirely of my own. Balancing and tweaking someone else's system though, I can do without major headaches, so hence the attraction.

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Post by Arek » Thu Feb 21, 2008 1:18 pm

Update:

Well, one person has gone ahead and bought the core rulebook. He says it's pretty interesting, although he questions some stuff, like Clerics sometimes not receiving their spells.

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Post by mythfish » Thu Feb 21, 2008 1:35 pm

Arek wrote:Update:

Well, one person has gone ahead and bought the core rulebook. He says it's pretty interesting, although he questions some stuff, like Clerics sometimes not receiving their spells.
Eh, the chance that a cleric won't receive their spells is relatively small, and more than made up for by the detect lunar ability and the fact that they can spontaneously cast any spell when working against lunar interests.
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Arek
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Post by Arek » Thu Feb 21, 2008 1:41 pm

mythfish wrote:
Arek wrote:Update:

Well, one person has gone ahead and bought the core rulebook. He says it's pretty interesting, although he questions some stuff, like Clerics sometimes not receiving their spells.
Eh, the chance that a cleric won't receive their spells is relatively small, and more than made up for by the detect lunar ability and the fact that they can spontaneously cast any spell when working against lunar interests.
Not to mention, it's just another aspect of the flavor of Highpoint: You can't even depend on the gods. That forces you to change your point of view towards this setting, rather than just taking the divine magic for granted.

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Post by Arek » Fri Feb 22, 2008 5:01 pm

Further Update:

It seems a couple of more people have bought it, and one even thanked me!

He says the only thing that keeps it from being his new favorite setting is his concern that the new classes weren't properly balanced.

And I have to tell you, Goodman Games, these are people who can find fault with both the fluff and crunch of Eberron. I'd say it's further proof that you turn out a high-quality product.

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Post by Ken Hart » Fri Feb 22, 2008 6:54 pm

Arek, thanks for the update and for spreading the word! It's always good to hear about new fans.

I'm curious about the comments regarding the new classes. Sure, maybe this is a hard-to-please group (which makes the thumbs-up for the setting ever better), but anything in particular that you recall? I've heard a couple of criticisms of the steamborg, for instance, and the steamborg Mk II in Steam Warriors was meant to offer more flexibility for those readers.

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Arek
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Post by Arek » Fri Feb 22, 2008 7:05 pm

Ken Hart wrote:Arek, thanks for the update and for spreading the word! It's always good to hear about new fans.

I'm curious about the comments regarding the new classes. Sure, maybe this is a hard-to-please group (which makes the thumbs-up for the setting ever better), but anything in particular that you recall? I've heard a couple of criticisms of the steamborg, for instance, and the steamborg Mk II in Steam Warriors was meant to offer more flexibility for those readers.

--Ken
They are a pretty tough crowd, and a good portion of them can usually beat the people on the wizards.com CharOp boards (A couple of people from this board are responsible for the Wish and the Word).

They have some views on what makes a class able to keep up with the other classes and a lot of them play by the Frank and K rules that enable non-casters to be as effective as casters without having to trawl through multiple books for feats and classes.

They haven't said anything too specific--although the Clerics possibly losing spells for a day isn't a favorite feature, and I think we'll have to wait for them to play it a few times and report on the results.

Although they ARE pretty vocal about stuff.

To give you an idea of how these people roll, I'll pick out some stuff from the Tomes and post it over in d20 Conversation. Probably the wish economy...

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Post by Arek » Fri Feb 22, 2008 11:44 pm

Okay. I got the samples of the Tomes up. I may or may not have already put up links to them in another thread, so...

Check for 'Best of Dumpster Diving' for the links and check Frank and K's work in d20 Conversation for the samples. I'm about to go put up the base classes from the Dungeonomicon...

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Post by Arek » Sat Feb 23, 2008 3:24 pm

Okay, the jury is currently working on what you can use steampowers for, but the initial impression is that they're underpowered compared to magic; if used creatively they can be used to overcome nonmagic people, but that's it.

I'll try to get them to lay down some examples, but it might help if I had some good uses of steampowers for reference, besides the stuff like flamethrower, cold-ray, giant Iron Arm, and so on.

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Wyatt
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Post by Wyatt » Tue Feb 26, 2008 6:10 am

Well, Steampowers require a lot of DM interpretation, and furthermore, I don't think they were really meant to supplant magic. I mean, vancian magic is pretty much the strongest system in D&D with the most possibilities and exploits. Everything is underpowered in comparison.

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