Death & Dying in DCC RPG

If it doesn't fit into a category above, then inscribe it here, O Mighty One...

Moderators: DJ LaBoss, finarvyn, michaelcurtis, Harley Stroh

smathis
Cold-Hearted Immortal
Posts: 1091
Joined: Fri Jan 28, 2011 12:52 pm

Re: Death & Dying in DCC RPG

Post by smathis » Fri Mar 18, 2011 6:18 pm

Hamakto wrote:What you described as a HP system is very similar to what I suggested.

You at d4+3 for warriors and me a d6+2 for warriors. They both average out to the same rolls.
That was on purpose. I think sometimes we fail to see when we're talking about the same thing. I recognized that your points and my points were of a mind. And I wanted to try to point that out.
Hamakto wrote:You do throw some interesting stats about what they look like with ability bonuses, but for the purpose of the forum discussions I do not think we can worry about the extremes as much. Since Joseph has already committed to the 3e ability bonus (+1 every 2 points), they have inherited the problems that come with higher bonus numbers. That if a character does roll a 16, that +3 is a huge bonus in DCC. When it comes to con, it is going to be very large.

(I actually prefer the 13-15 = +1, 16-17 +2, 18+3 system. It keeps things from getting as out of balance)
I strongly prefer the B/X attribute bonuses. First for the reason you mention about them. Second, because they model the bell curve of 3d6. I think that's important.

That said, I think the extremes are important to consider. I don't think we can ignore them. Only considering the averages is misleading, IMO. Sure, it's fine to say on average a Fighter at 10th level will have 55 hp. If you're going to track down problems with a system, it's going to be at the edges. Not on the averages. So while I wouldn't sell the farm on the highs and lows, I think they're worthy of consideration.

I think DCC needs to get the CON bonus out of hit points per level. I think they're overly punitive for low CON scores and overly beneficial for high CON scores.

Think about this. A 10th level Fighter with an 8 CON will have 45 hp "on average". A 10th level Fighter with 16 CON will have 85. Fighters of comparable skill level. One has almost half the other's hit points. Why? How does the Fighter with 16 CON parry an attack better than the one with 8 CON?

And why in the world would anyone play a Wizard with anything under 14 CON?

It's a dumb move. And here's why.

Because that -1 CON at every level hurts every class worse than the Fighter. If DCC keeps CON bonus per level, my advice to players... Never play a Wizard unless you have CON of 12 or higher. If you have a negative CON bonus, play a Fighter. Does that make any sense? I didn't think so either. But it's what the system promotes.
Hamakto wrote:Because of the 3d6, the way that character HP's work (in 3e numbers) is that a squishy (wizard) has 1/2 as many HP as a meat shield (warrior). The Thief and (Militant) Clerics fall somewhere in between.
I don't see how what I was talking about changes that.
Hamakto wrote:I do not think giving 1st level characters too many bonus HP's is what Joseph has in mind for the game. He wants things to be deadly (i.e. start with 3 zero level chars and maybe you will have one survive by level 2 or 3). If you bump up the HP's too much at level one, you drastically change the base feel of the game.
Again, I don't see how what I suggested did that. Zero-level characters will have (max) 8 hit points. A Zero level character (with a d4 hit die and +4 CON bonus) in 3e can have a (max) of 8 hit points. A first level character will have between 3-17 hp. How is that bumping up hit points too much at level one?

Assuming DCC zero-level characters have any hit points at all... and assuming that those carry over to 1st level... A 1st level DCC Fighter could have as many as 22 hit points.

I apologize for not communicating well. I feel I've over-explained myself. I'm not talking about inflating or deflating hit points. What I'm talking about is narrowing the range and pushing them all towards the center of a common curve.

To create a high-low range that's not 10-100 at 10th level. I don't think people are going to be playing with averages. That's what 4e does. It turns the averages into a flat bonus. I don't think either of us like that option.
Hamakto wrote:1. AC will not scale like 3e/4e. That means that based on the Warrior combat progression, people will probably get hit more often
Yup. It also means that Wizards will get hit more often. And Thieves. I'm suggesting that they get a little boost towards the middle. To keep the outliers from getting whacked. What I'm suggesting doesn't penalize the Warriors. It just brings them back down to earth a little. Everyone towards the center of a common curve. Instead of everyone existing on their own curve.

On average, we talk about Wizards having 1/2 the hit points of Fighters. But in reality, they could have 1/3 or 1/4. And they'll be getting hit more often. I'm not sure what more I need to say here.
Hamakto wrote:2. Classes will possibly max out at level 10. That puts an effective cap on HP.
Yup. And I'm suggesting the "cap" for Fighters is too high. And a significant percentage of the problem is adding the CON bonus every level.

Consider this... If you're a Wizard with 18 CON from the luck of the die, you'd get more hit points from your CON bonus than your hit die. You could potentially have more hit points than the party's Fighter. Actually, if you're lucky enough to roll up a character who has an 18 CON, I'd encourage a player to choose Wizard unless the character had less than 10 Intelligence.
Hamakto wrote:3. Ability bonuses will be non-existent for most characters. The core rules need to float primarily for them.
I disagree. Ability bonuses will float around the -1 to +1. With most characters having at least one +2. That lucky roll on a CON score nets the character 20-50% more hit points (depending on class) every level, until the end of time (or 10th level). And it gets used everytime a Fortitude save is rolled. And probably means the character heals twice as fast as everyone else.

What other attribute nets that kind of awesome?
Hamakto wrote:4. I think I read that Warriors might be adding their combat dice to weapon damage (or a bonus die) as they level up.
I would wonder how Monster damage fits into all this. Because that would make the squishy pretty squished, IMO. If the Monsters get combat dice, then ouch. Watch out 10th level Wizard with 25 hp!
Hamakto wrote:I know I proposed a wound system earlier. You proposed one... and I think a few others have chimed in with a few ideas on the boards. I am really starting to lean towards not promoting a wound system for DCC. There is no real simple way to do one that keeps the base spirit of HP in DCC/DnD. Unless you are willing to re-do the entire spell/weapon damage system to go along with it (I think that would be too drastic of a change).

To be honest, I think the fighter will need his 55hp on average to survive in his party role of meat shield. You want the squishies to tremble in fear when they get into melee. You still handing out too many HP to them, and that part of the game dynamic starts to go by the wayside.
I agree. But I don't see how that applies to what I was talking about. A Wizard with an 18 CON would be as good (or better) a meat shield as an "average" Fighter.
Hamakto wrote:(as a side note): I have always done max HP as a house rule. And I think that should be part of level one in DCC. (using d6 method you end up with 6-8 hp for 1st level chars)... With a min(-2)/max(+4) range in your example of (4-12hp). This keeps things deadly without providing too much life to the characters at first level.
So, another thing to consider. By my suggestion, the max a 1st level fighter could have is 17 hp. But they're far more likely to be towards the middle of that range. By using max HP at 1st level (CON 18 and 1d10 hit die) and assuming just "average" on 1d4 at zero level, a 1st level Fighter would have (2 + 4 + 10 +4) 20 hit points.

So I don't see how I'm suggesting handing out way too many HP.
Hamakto wrote:The problem with all of our discussions is that there are so many unknowns out there that it is difficult to work out a system that fits easily into the game and keeps the loose rule feel that Joseph wants.
I agree. But I'm hoping that at least these numbers on hit points help get the point across. I feel like I'm singing into an air tunnel but I'm hoping that someone understands what I'm saying.

I see it as a problem with 3e and I've talked about it before. I don't think it so bad with the B/X bonuses. And that's why I pushed for those as well. But I believe those are off the table. So hopefully this gets read.

And I don't think changing the hit dice per level to something more equanimous is an intrusive change. It's basically your suggestion, Andy. 1d6+1, 1d6+2, 1d6+3 with d4s as you've pointed out. That was the point of my last post. I've just come up for reasons why it's a really, really good idea.

Can we agree or must I continue defending your really great idea?
Last edited by smathis on Fri Mar 18, 2011 6:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

smathis
Cold-Hearted Immortal
Posts: 1091
Joined: Fri Jan 28, 2011 12:52 pm

Re: Death & Dying in DCC RPG

Post by smathis » Fri Mar 18, 2011 6:26 pm

Hamakto wrote:
smathias wrote:But, looking at DCC, spellcasters already have Pyrrhic Victories with Spellburn. And it seems like it's a lot of fun in play, no? Getting eaten up by a frog-god? Classic!

I think it stands to reason that non-spellcasters should have a similar option in the form of Skillburn. Whether you like it or not, it's in the fiction. And, specifically in regards to what I'm writing, it's one of the defining moments -- in fact the only memorable moment -- for a character in the most important publication of the genre.
If we follow this line of logic, then everyone should have a chance at a MDoA... etc. Just because that mechanic exists for a wizard does not mean it should be spread out for all of the classes. DCC is in my opinion, moving back to the old school gaming where character classes were all separate and different. Their abilities did not overlap and you could not easily gain them (i.e. like the skill system).
I disagree. And we can agree to disagree. Skillburn will keep the classes "separate and different". I'm not pitching it for DCC. It will likely have to appear in the thing I'm writing. If you don't like it, don't use it.

smathis
Cold-Hearted Immortal
Posts: 1091
Joined: Fri Jan 28, 2011 12:52 pm

Re: Death & Dying in DCC RPG

Post by smathis » Fri Mar 18, 2011 6:38 pm

Hamakto wrote:But look at it this way. You are looking at 140hp and going OMG what a range. The problem is that it is not a linear line where someone can get 140hp. The chance of someone getting 140hp at 10th level is 1 in 10,000,000 (for rolling a 10 on a d10 for each level) * 1 in 1296 chance of rolling an 18 in CON (note 18 is 1 in 216 chance * 6 because CON is a specific ability score) === for a net chance of it happing 1 in 12,960,000,000. The number on the flip side is nearly as great...
I'm not looking at 140 hp and saying "OMG what a range". I'm looking at the entire range and saying there's too much variance there. I think I've explained what I'm talking about as completely as I can explain it. Please don't put words in my mouth.
Hamakto wrote:So the average of someone with 18con is 95hp. But if you are LUCKY enough to have 18 con, then congratulations if you want to be a fighter. If you are a wizard (i.e. you rolled a 6 STR, and 12 INT to go with it), then your survival rate greatly increases.
Actually, I'd propose that you're better off playing a Fighter with an average or negative CON bonus. Better off than any other class in the game. If you've got a CON of 14 or higher and a WIS or INT of 10 or higher, I'd say you'd be, um, not living up to your potential if you chose anything other than Cleric or Wizard.

DCC. Min-maxed. Right there.
Hamakto wrote:If someone wants to figure the standard deviation, they are welcome to. That gives a far better indication on the hp ranges per levels and it would provide a better comparison.
I feel you're insinuating that what I'm talking about should be disregarded because I didn't bother to do statistical analysis. Even though it was your idea first.

Please help me to understand. Because, at this point, it feels like my ideas are getting Auto-Challenged -- regardless of what they contain or who they came from first.

Hamakto
Mighty-Thewed Reaver
Posts: 307
Joined: Tue Aug 28, 2007 8:50 am
Location: West Suburbs of Chicago

Re: Death & Dying in DCC RPG

Post by Hamakto » Sun Mar 20, 2011 8:30 pm

smathis wrote:I feel you're insinuating that what I'm talking about should be disregarded because I didn't bother to do statistical analysis. Even though it was your idea first.

Please help me to understand. Because, at this point, it feels like my ideas are getting Auto-Challenged -- regardless of what they contain or who they came from first.
That was not my intent to have your ideas disregarded at all. I have to admit *sheepishly* that I made some of those posts late at night and stressed out (we had server crashes at work --- and I was recovering them).

So, after re-reading my posts, they come out a bit more negative (and disjointed) than I intended.

So you have my apology, it was not my intent to be so confrontational. I am going to review everything again and put another post out there that should be more constructive and not disruptive to the continued discussion at hand. I will try to get it done tomorrow (monday) night.
Andy
Blood Kings
2007 & 2008 DCC Tourney Champion

smathis
Cold-Hearted Immortal
Posts: 1091
Joined: Fri Jan 28, 2011 12:52 pm

Re: Death & Dying in DCC RPG

Post by smathis » Mon Mar 21, 2011 5:36 am

Hamakto wrote:That was not my intent to have your ideas disregarded at all. I have to admit *sheepishly* that I made some of those posts late at night and stressed out (we had server crashes at work --- and I was recovering them).

So, after re-reading my posts, they come out a bit more negative (and disjointed) than I intended.

So you have my apology, it was not my intent to be so confrontational. I am going to review everything again and put another post out there that should be more constructive and not disruptive to the continued discussion at hand. I will try to get it done tomorrow (monday) night.
Thanks for the reply, Andy. Apology accepted and I offer my own apology for getting hot under the collar myself. I was confused by the posts and assumed the worst, mostly because of being really tired and having worked a long day myself.

I was running some numbers over the weekend and found that many of the issues with disparity of hit points is alleviated by removing CON bonus every level. And bringing either Fighters down to 1d8 or Wizards up to 1d6 for hit dice.

Almost no one would choose, in vanilla D&D, to have a CON score less than 10. And I think that's informed by how overly important that extra hit point bonus per level is. I'm all for getting rid of CON bonus every level. Or adopting another approach to hit points similar to what you've described with a common hit die and a smaller range of bonuses per level based on class (+1 to +3 or -1 to +2 instead of -3 to +4).

I'd hope DCC would consider something along these lines but I wouldn't be surprised if it carried on the problems introduced by 3e. I'd hope it would take the road less traveled in this instance though because I see it solving many other issues we've all discussed with damage and such -- like falling damage being lethal at high levels, massive damage, etc. I think Massive Damage is no longer necessary if we keep hit points within a reasonable range.

Thanks again for the reply. I'm very interested in hearing your ideas on this. I think it's one area where we share common ground.

Post Reply

Return to “DCC RPG General”