Talk:Epic Path

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Breaking things

  • manufactured things Are immune to earth glide, tunneling, burrowing
  • need a method for building up sunder to-hit over time; “aim”

multi-classing

Casters can burn a spell of any level when casting another spell to increase the save dc to hybrid

  • can also burn a spell to increase spell effects as though caster level was character level
  • you can't increase spell level above what your character level (NOT class level) would enable you to cast
  • doing so moves the spells damage up on the damage scale. for each step you move up, requires one spell to be burned.
  • ex1: a 25th level wizard casts the old classic, fireball. fireball does 3rd level spell damage, 1d6 per level, max 10d6. the wiz moves it to a hybrid save and 9th level spell damage, 1d6+3 per level, max 25d6+75. this costs eight spell slots, the 3rd level slot for the spell, one spell slot to change the save to hybrid, and six spell slots to move the damage up six levels.
  • ex2: a 13th level wizard/ 12th level fighter casts the old classic, fireball. fireball does 3rd level spell damage, max 10d6. the wiz/fig moves it to a hybrid save and 9th level spell damage (since the character level of 25 would enable a straight wiz to cast L9 spells), which is 1d6+3 per caster level max 25d6+75. this costs the wizard/fighter eight spells slots (which is MUCH more expensive for a 13th wiz), but gets a full-tilt 25d6+75 fireball.
  • metamagic feats stack normally, and only escalate the 'base' spell slot.
  • any spell slot may be burned, but it must contain an un-cast spell. once burned, the spell is gone until recovered normally. this gives a solid use for low level slots.
  • scrolls can be used as fuel as well.

Highest Priority Things To Do

  • spells pass - rebalance / retool all spells; cut out really terrible / useless spells
  • review Icy Prison (Spell) and Icy Prison, Mass (Spell). Too powerful for being the same caster level as Hold Person, but good flavor.
  • make sure bonus types like "enhancement bonus," "competence bonus," "morale bonus," etc. do not appear in spells... Spells which have any bonus types should lay a charge, making the bonus type 'arcane' or 'divine' or 'dual'.
  • printable character sheet, with worksheets to calculate everything.
  • update monster rules to state clearly that they can never have more than one (stateful) condition on them at a time.
  • If a player uses an ability which would apply a new condition on a monster that already has one, the ability deals any damage as normal, and the player can choose whether to apply the new condition (replacing the old one) or leaving the old one in place.
currently, this rule is only in the Designing Combat Encounters page.  Should it be anywhere else?
  • create new monsters for CR's 18 through 25
  • racial abilities - normalize what levels you (might) improve your racial abilities, and add it into the class tables
  • legendary skills as super-powers
  • Add Linguistics skill use for 'Identify Accent' to determine ethnicity or origin of a speaker.
  • Add Knowledge (Local) skill use for 'shopping' to determine how many magic items you can purchase in a single full day.
  • needs modifier for 'speed shopping'.
  • create a bunch of magic items that are useful for pure caster classes, to give them something to spend money on.
  • extend duration of spell
  • increase level cap on damage of spell (doesn't change scaling)
  • increase # of targets for spell
  • an item that can go into any slot (but must go into a slot) that grants 1 additional spell slot of a specified spell level.
  • consider deleting some of the less popular metamagic feats and turning them into magic items.
  • some items specific to styles of casting:
  • ray casters -- bonus ray; 5-foot step before and/or after casting ray; better damage;
  • aoe casters -- change AOE shape, larger AOE, add AOE to touch or single-target spell (?), 1 free 'selective' target
  • summoners -- more hp's, increased move speed; increased to-hit, damage, DR, ER, etc. -- one bonus effect per item
  • synergists -- increase damage from synergies; leaves condition in place (epic?)
  • consider fixing the pricing models for the magic item creation sub-pages.
  • Add definition of triggered free action
  • review 'breaking objects' page, in light of changes to vehicle combat and removal of abstract encounters rules
  • siege weapons - how do they work with the vehicle combat rules?
    • unless we want siege weapons to continue to be cumulative forces, though it seems like people hated all the dice rolling of the abstract encounters
    • right now, vehicles will never penetrate heavy defenses and fortifications; the target DC's are way too high, as are many of the durabilities
  • add weights for all doors and such on the 'breaking objects' page, for purposes of the Might skill.
  • Redo analysis pass for all character classes
  • I'd like to revisit the Brawler's restriction on magic weapons (e.g. Amulet of Mighty Fists). Why? (I forgot)
  • feats:
    • Warlord - more formation dice
    • Ranger - more quarry dice
    • Ranger - better traps (better action economy, use against an occupied space)
    • Prowler - improve save DC for encroaching jolt?
    • add a feat to allow "deny saving throw" under Heal to be non-provoking, and take only a move action (no bonus to check)
    • Update/Remove any feats which apply to abstract encounters
    • Review barbarian feats again
    • Fighter - able to challenge one additional target each round (epic?)
    • agile runner - able to make a single turn during a run movement (scale w/level? require the Runner (Feat)?)
  • Add feats per Jeff to boost Dispel Magic, similar to Dimension Door, Lightning Bolt, etc.
  • Counterspell Feedback - When you counter and enemy's magical effect with a counterspell, you gain an effect based on the type of spell used. Effects last to the beginning ot the opponent's next turn unless otherwise specified.
  • abjuration - gain a +2 to save and AC against the opponent
  • conjuration - move the enemy 5 ft per spell level used
  • divination - enemy insight - gain knowldge of the enemy as if you made a challenging check
  • enchantment - opponent is distracted
  • evocation - do 1d6 damage per spell level
  • illusion - fog senses - everything beyond 5 ft from the opponent has concealment
  • necromancy - unsettled - opponent is shaken
  • transmutation - opponent is slowed
  • change death checks to fort save, dc equal to negative hit point total.
  • three failed saves equals death
  • create a dr type for ‘mundane/non-magic’
  • update spells page:
  • when we update bonus types, many sections, but in particular the 'stacking effects' section, will need updated
  • descriptor section - should probably be simplified. Monsters don't use many descriptors (we may change this, but for now, it's not widely used, which is a nerf to many abilities which rely on a particular descriptor being present).
  • add some notes to the Spells page, regarding GM's adjudicating 'fluff' vs 'crunch'.
  • Specific examples are direct damage (crunch) vs. illusions (fluff).
  • Rules for bonuses from fluff which give general 'not to exceed' values.
  • plus for caster level (+1 to +3), and plus for creativity (+1 to +2).
  • consider calling out a "Rogues Cheat!" class feature for rogues, which spells out that they always do at least half damage against creatures immune or hardened to precision damage, and they can always flank creatures, even if they cannot normally be flanked.
  • Perform: performance complexity - clarify to setting the CR of the song
    • same for entertaining an audience
  • create set of magic items for endless ammo (for each type), as well as clarifying costs of single expendable ammo
  • converting magic properties - implements / armor / shields into templates
  • defining equipment
  • magic item crafting rules are only halfway re-written
    • need to update rules for magic enchantment of projectile weapons, but not ammo
  • continue writing Cosmology of Creation page
  • need to update / create page for monster types and subtypes.
    • need to review any broken links to subtypes that we don't actually want to define (e.g. azata)

blood magic

  • blood magic - a form of deep magic (true dweomers?) which, in addition to requiring a high level spell slot to cast, also requires a significant hit point cost from its caster. However, this hit point cost can also be paid from the blood of nearby recently-dead creatures, helpless creatures, or willing creatures.

Stolen Ideas Worth Contemplating

Full Attacks

  • starting at level 1, all classes get two attacks when making a full attack. The total number of attacks at higher levels doesn't change, we just front-load it.
  • (optional) instead of an iterative -5 to each attack after the first, all attacks suffer a -5 penalty to hit when making a full attack.
  • on average, this would not change the to-hit numbers for any characters except full bab characters, after they get their 4th attack.
  • on average, this would lower to-hit numbers for characters that make use of haste, cleave, or other bonus attack methods, used during a full attack.
  • as a result, I don't think this change would require any changes to monster AC's, or feats. It should just 'work'.

Shields

  • AC bonus from shield isn't applied unless you spend an action to bring your shield to bear.
  • probably a swift? maybe a move? definitely not a standard.
  • could give different AC's depending on what action type you use
  • in addition, when wearing a shield, you can use an immediate action to reduce a single attack's damage as an immediate action
  • amount of damage reduction based on shield size, but would need to be enough to be 'worth' an immediate action
  • 3 + 1/2 level for buckler, 3 + level for lt shield, 3 + double level for hvy shield (?)
  • shield focus feat would grant a bonus immediate action for the shield block, allowing user to keep their normal immediate action
  • could shield block more than once per round, but see 'monkeying with AOO's' above for other uses of immediates.

Non-Lethal Damage

  • Instead of tracking it separately, only the killing blow to a creature (the one which reduces it to 0 hit points or fewer) counts towards lethal/non-lethal. If a creature's hit points are reduced to 0 or fewer by a non-lethal attack, they are KO'ed instead of killed. In all other cases, non-lethal damage behaves exactly like damage, and is tracked exactly like damage.
  • this would mean healing would become somewhat weaker in fights where non-lethal is used against players, since it wouldn't be a separate healing stack from regular damage.
  • however, it would greatly simplify the hit point tracking in the game.

Skills

  • Replace Skill Focus (Feat), and Skill Focus, Epic (Feat) with Skill Expert (Feat), Skill Specialist (Feat), and Skill Prodigy (Feat).
  • Skill Expert (Feat): +2 bonus to skill, crit on 19-20 (+5 to result), no longer critically fail on a 1
  • Skill Specialist (Feat): +2 bonus to skill, crit on 18-20 (+7 to result), new skill uses available (current epic skill uses)
  • Skill Prodigy (Feat): +1 bonus to skill, crit on 17-20 (+10 on result), new skill uses available (champions level super-hero stuff)

Pets

  • use one or more of their owner's attacks in order to act (one or more times)
  • would allow secondary/tertiary attacks to go as pet's full bab/secondary bab
  • makes balancing pet damage much easier, since it directly subtracts actions/damage from the owner

Haversacks and Cubic Feet Limits

  • suggest allowing haversacks to hold anything, as long as the item(s) don't exceed the haversack's weight limit; ignore bulkiness.
  • we could have more than one model of haversack, since they are basically mandatory magic items anyway; interesting choices.
  • we could say that no character can ever have more than one haversack, or we could just make them expensive enough that having more than one is a bit painful.
  • 'normal' haversack - good weight capacity, low actual weight (5 lbs, regardless of what's in it), only a 3' diameter opening -- nothing bigger than 3' in any dimension can be shoved into it.
  • 'wide-mouthed' haversack - slightly less weight capacity, higher actual weight (10 lbs, regardless of what's in it), no limit to size of things you can shove into it, as long as it doesn't exceed weight capacity of bag.
  • 'quick-draw' haversack - x times per day, draw an item from the sack as a free action (instead of swift). lower weight capacity, but otherwise same as 'normal' haversack.
  • 'kidnapper's' haversack - can keep willing (or helpless) living things in the sack, in a state of stasis. 30 lbs actual weight.
  • 'smuggler's haversack - looks like a shirt, takes up chest slot (isn't slotless). 1 lbs actual weight, but less the capacity than a normal one (half?).
  • I realize this steps on portable holes and potentially bags of holding.
  • never liked portable holes anyway.
  • bags of holding could still be auxiliary storage, and we could add a consumable trait to them, allowing them to be permanently merged with a haversack to increase it's storage capacity somewhat.
  • this increase would (maybe) get blown away if/when the haversack gets upgraded, so it's a short-term means of bridging the gap to the next haversack model.
  • would need to make it more expensive to tack on enough bags of holding to bring the haversack up to the next equivalent weight class.

Damage Resistance and Energy Resistance Simplification/Expansion

All resistance is simplified down to a Resistance Type, Abundance, and a Keyword.

Energy: Common, Uncommon, and Rare (exact terms to be defined)

Physical: Common, Uncommon, or Rare (exact terms to be defined)

Examples: Fire, Cold, Sonic, Lightning, and Acid are (Energy, Common). Negative, Positive, Light, Force are (Energy, Uncommon). Holy, Sunlight, Darkfire, Thundercrash, Freezacid, are (Energy, Rare).

Examples: Slashing, bludgeoning, Piercing are (Physical, Common.) Falling, Drilling, Gnashing are (Physical, Uncommon.) Fracture, disintegration, Dissolution, are (Physical, Rare.)

Spindle, mutilate, lascerate, crushing, buffeting, poison, corrosion, necrosis, flensing

Many attacks are coded by naked keywords (fire damage), but all resists are coded by (Type, Abundance). Only six types of resists are available. If you have all three of a Type, it is effectively /-.

NOTE: We can, if we want, have 'limited' versions of abundances. For example, skeletons could have DR (Common physical) that is bypassed by bludgeoning. As I think of it, this keeps the flavor of skellies but uses the new mechanics.


Implications:

This change greatly expands physical damage. This change greatly expands energy damage. This change makes getting "/-" easier. This change implies that physical DR is going to be 'reversed' so it works mechanically like ER. This narrows physical damage. This change will allow us to re-look the weapons, qualities, and properties, if we want. This change will require us to re-look and re-define the dweomermetals. This change will require us to rebuild/redefine several class features. This change will require us to re-look/rebuild monsters. (Template changes? Again? Ugh.....)


The upside is it 'cleans up' the godawful DR vs ER mess, and it allows us to greatly expand/improve monsters, weapons, shields, dweomermetals, etc.

Energy Damage Types

Abilities or items that grant ER will grant one of four variations:

  • ER versus a single element of the player's choosing, chosen at time item or ability is gained (or specified by the item or ability). Cannot be changed.
  • ER versus a single element within one of the energy categories: element, fundament, rudiment. Type is chosen as a swift action, and can be changed at any time to any other type within that energy category with another swift action.
  • ER versus an entire energy category. Cannot change which category it defends against, but defends against all energy types within the category.
  • ER versus all energy types.
  • element (common energies)
  • fire
  • ice (water)
  • lightning (air)
  • acid (earth)
  • sonic
  • poison [ toxin ]
  • fundament (uncommon energies)
  • necrosis (death)
  • radiance (light)
  • nascent [ vital | germinal | élan ] (life)
  • quiescence (stillness)
  • desiccation (dehydration)
  • psychic
  • rudiment (exotic energies)
  • force
  • void
  • soul [ spirit | anima ]
  • stellar [ solar | lunar ]
  • tenebrous [ umbral | shadow ] (darkness)
  • eldritch [ aura | anagogue ]
  • primal (creation energies)
  • irresistible damage type - always bypasses DR and ER.

scaling:

  • ER vs. single energy types: scales to grant 80% resistance to damage from that energy type.
  • ER vs. a class (element, fundament, rudiment): scales to grant 60% resistance to damage from those types.
  • ER vs. all non-primal energy (ER x/-): scales to grant 40% resistance to all non-primal energy damage.
  • this will encourage single energy-type resistances, while still making communal resistances attractive.

Bonus Types

There are 29 bonus types:

  • Untyped Bonus
  • Alchemical Bonus
  • Armor Bonus
  • Armor Enhancement Bonus
  • Circumstance Bonus
  • Competence Bonus
  • Deflection Bonus
  • Dodge Bonus
  • Enhancement Bonus
  • Feat Bonus
  • Inherent Bonus
  • Insight Bonus
  • Integral Bonus
  • Level Bonus
  • Luck Bonus
  • Martial Bonus
  • Material Bonus
  • Morale Bonus
  • Natural Armor Bonus
  • Profane Bonus
  • Racial Bonus
  • Resistance Bonus
  • Retraining Bonus
  • Sacred Bonus
  • Shield Bonus
  • Shield Enhancement Bonus
  • Size Bonus
  • Training Bonus
  • Weapon Bonus

Based on current plan for magic redo, the following bonus types might be eliminated:

  • Alchemical Bonus
  • Competence Bonus (?) - does a bard's performance count as a "charge"?
  • Insight Bonus
  • Luck Bonus
  • Martial Bonus (?) - does a warlord's battle standard count as a "charge"?
  • Morale Bonus
  • Profane Bonus
  • Sacred Bonus

to be replaced with:

  • arcane bonus
  • divine bonus
  • vital bonus (both arcane & divine)

Item Activation

All command word items can still be activated by a standard action. OR, they may be activated, once per round, by a swift action and by expending hit points equal to 5+ the CL of the item.

(RD) the more I think about this, the more I think it should be a feat, or class feature, or something. It's too powerful, even with the HP loss.  It's effectively the Quicken Spell feat for magic items.

slotless notes

  • get rid of synergy bonus for multiple enchants on single items.
    • instead, first enchant is normal cost, any additional enchants cost double.
  • slotless items which are only available as slotless items (e.g. handy haversack, flying carpet, etc.) are normally priced
    • items which are normally "slotted" items but are converted to slotless cost triple normal price.

multi-classing / dual-classing

  • if you choose to multi-class or dual-class, you permanently give up the use of action points.
  • multi-classing: commit to no fewer than 5 levels of any class. If you have at least 5 levels in a class, you may choose to start gaining levels in a different class instead, committing to that new class for a minimum of 5 levels.
  • dual classing: pick two classes at character creation. You level up in an alternating pattern, gain 1 level in one, then gain 1 level in the other. You cannot deviate from this pattern, nor can you choose to multi-class until you have at least 5 levels in BOTH classes.

Things to consider for multi-classing / dual-classing

  • Feat Support: We will need to create a fair number of new feats for each character class akin to the Shaping Focus (Feat).

magic weapons notes

  • remove ability to enchant ammo; only projectile weapon can be enchanted
    • update limitless quiver to allow other ammo types, but non-magical.
    • ammo also cannot have dweomermetals — dweomermetal effects are instead conferred by the projectile weapon shooting the ammo.
  • create some non-magical ways of adding +to-hit and +damage to weapons/shields/armor/implements
    • will not stack with magic, but cannot be suppressed by anti-magic/dispel, etc.
    • instead of costing more, I think they just shouldn't go as high as +9
    • no properties? (we could, but it would be a lot of work that we don't really need to do right now)
      • quenches of oil, water, brine, blood for +to-hit
      • tempers of single, triple, and seven-fold for +base damage

Siegemetal Alloys

  • like a dweomermetal - any enhancement bonus or magic properties on weapon (or armor?) become extraordinary instead of magic-based.
  • Tempered Siegemetal - max absolute bonus of +5 (12-10)
  • Annealed Siegemetal - max absolute bonus of +10 (20-10)
  • Quenched Siegemetal - max absolute bonus of +14 (28-10)
  • Forged Siegemetal - max absolute bonus of +18 (35-10)
  • DR x/magic works against this weapon, since it is not magic.

Skill Challenges

  • use initiative as a means of controlling who acts when
  • require more skill checks each round than there are players -- make the players decide which parts of the challenge they care about most
  • determine what happens if each of the checks isn't made -- consequences are fun. Use the consequences to trigger the event of the next round
  • the first round should simply lay out the challenge, and let people know what skill checks exist
    • may also want to include mystery checks -- players who don't want to do any of the 'mandatory' checks can try something different
    • set the scene -- make sure there's lots of gimmicks, treats, odds & ends to interact with
    • determine the timer -- there should be a clearly defined timer -- "if the foe gains ground at least three times, they escape".
  • the second round should add a complication or twist, or perhaps a boon (if the players did really well)
  • skill challenges should probably be timed to last about 3-4 rounds, just like combat. This would allow traps to become skill challenges, for example, but also weird things like poisons and disease. Chase scenes, bar brawls, verbal sparring, contests, etc. are all also good examples of skill challenges.
  • abstract encounters re-tool -- exceptional success rewards a d6 (or even 2d6) which can be applied to anyone's future checks during the skill challenge. Bonus dice are additive, and as many as you want can be applied to a single roll. However, any roll which has bonus dice applied to it cannot gain bonus dice itself. If you want to accumulate bonus dice, don't get help.
  • need to work out how xp and treasure would be awarded for skill challenges, especially when they are taking place in the middle of a fight (traps, poisons, contests). The challenge itself would ideally represent one or more monsters of the same CR as the encounter, but the math seems a little fuzzy.
  • common skill challenges (bar brawls, chase scenes) might have a random table of complications for the GM to roll. Complications don't occur right away -- the players are notified that the complication might occur if they don't take action to prevent it, and are given a round to deal with it (in addition to dealing with all the other skill checks required).
    • each complication should have a few variants of outcomes, depending on how well the players mitigated it, ranging from "made it worse", to "not as bad", to "didn't happen at all".

character sheet changes

  • include might skill modifiers to encumbrance
  • bailiwick skill ranks granted to associated knowledge skill
  • add button functions from Rick's sheet
  • start listing out the possible moving parts relevant to combat in the buffs and debuffs tab

Lower Priority Things To Do

  • templates:
    • consider moving rogue talents pages into templates
    • consider moving fighter tactics into templates/separate pages
  • Epic Bloodline (archaic bloodline) writeups
  • Sorcerer Bloodlines page
  • Cleric Domains page
  • Auramancy
  • True Dweomers

Character Classes

  • Physical Adept class (Fleshcrafter?) - arcane-powered melee, re-tool eidolon-style abilities as self-buffs
  • Mentat Warsage Storm Knight class - intelligence-based melee and thrown weapons user.
  • Toxotes - high damage ranged attacks, trick shots (possibly just create via new rogue talents?)
  • Galvanist
  • Seeker
  • Templar
  • Effigy (Artifact? Vestige?)
  • the character is an actual artifact, which is intelligent. The actual artifact is /somewhere/, though even the player may not know where. They have extended their consciousness into a remote effigy (moppet?) with which they interact with the world.
  • they can use their experience to augment their effigy, giving it better abilities
  • like a summoner or pet class, except that the master isn't present on the battlefield
  • Assassin
  • inflicts and spreads bleeds; can end all bleeds to deal that much damage to all enemies (even non-bleeding ones)

Interesting Links