Jump to content
Gauntlet

Why purchase a Skill Level with All Attacks?

Recommended Posts

Well the raw data is this:
+1 OCV = 5 points for all attacks

+1 DCV = 5 points for all defenses

 

+1 Damage Class = 5 points ...ish, because it can add to KA's as well so maybe 7 points for the "also KA" advantage?

So any level is worth 3.5 points for the damage bonus

 

+1 vs all combat is around 13 points (half a damage class plus +1 OCV or DCV) active but since you can only use one or the other, it probably should cost less.  Maybe 10 points total, since you have to choose and cannot gain the benefit of both OCV and DCV at the same time. And DCV doesn't get the damage bonus so maybe it should cost slightly less?

 

Being +1 OCV against everything should be around 8 points by this logic. 

But +1 DCV should be cheaper, since it doesn't give you the damage bonus, its just 5 points.

 

+1 OCV vs only melee or only ranged attacks is what, a -½ limitation?  Because you're buying levels only for the attacks you'll use, so while its limiting, its not especially so.  But the damage bonus also only works against melee or ranged, so its got to have a limitation as well, maybe -¼.  So its now 6 points (5.6) or 3 points per level.

So OCV with only one or the other should cost you about 6 points.

 

+1 OCV with only a couple of attacks is an even bigger limitation (-1?), probably totalling around 2 points, plus the damage bonus which again is limited a bit more, maybe a -½ to 5 points total

So around 4 points per level.

 

+1 OCV with only a single attack is a pretty major limitation, maybe -2.  And the damage is only for a single attack rather than any maybe a -1. 

So its 2+1 or around 3 points

 

And again with all of these: DCV gives no damage bonus so its cheaper at each stage.

 

I dunno, just thinking as I'm typing.  Whatever it ought to be, its really obvious that the present cost schedule is completely wrong.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Christopher R Taylor said:

Well the raw data is this:
+1 OCV = 5 points for all attacks

+1 DCV = 5 points for all defenses

 

+1 Damage Class = 5 points ...ish, because it can add to KA's as well so maybe 7 points for the "also KA" advantage?

So any level is worth 3.5 points for the damage bonus

 

 

That DC is also 0 END. 

 

The only precedent we really have is the martial arts DC, which is 4 points for a 0 END DC that applies to any martial maneuver (so at least a bit more limited than "only HTH").

 

7 hours ago, Christopher R Taylor said:

+1 vs all combat is around 13 points (half a damage class plus +1 OCV or DCV) active but since you can only use one or the other, it probably should cost less.  Maybe 10 points total, since you have to choose and cannot gain the benefit of both OCV and DCV at the same time. And DCV doesn't get the damage bonus so maybe it should cost slightly less?

 

Three abilities, choose one to use at a time, sounds a lot like a Multipower to me.  That's a steep discount.  I'm not sure how you see OCV getting a damage bonus, but DCV not getting a damage bonus.  You can use any one of the three at a time.

 

How much would it cost to build a combat skill level?  If we assume your +1/2 for a "floating DC", and another +1/2 for 0 END, we can buy 2 levels as a 10 point Multipower pool, and three Flex Slots of +2 OCV, +2 DCV and +1 Floating 0 END DC, so 2 points each for 3 slots, +10 for the pool = 16 points.

 

That's one level for 8 points.

 

Only range or only HTH for about 5 points seems OK - a -1/2 limitation.

 

Maybe "only three maneuvers or a tight group" should be 4 points (-1), but that does not feel like much of a discount.  3 points still "feels" reasonable, although that is more like a -2 limitation.  That would suggest +1 OCV for 3 maneuvers/attacks should be a -2 limitation as well, so 5 points for +3, cheaper than our present 2 points for +1 OCV to only one attack.

 

Just thinking out loud as well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

I'm not sure how you see OCV getting a damage bonus, but DCV not getting a damage bonus. 

 

It doesn't specifically say so in the rules but how would DCV levels be used to increase damage with an attack??

 

I mean, I'm pretty skeptical that levels should be allowed to use to increase damage to begin with, its not like your gun will shoot harder if you're really accurate with it.  The only way it makes sense is if you're doing faux hit locations with skill levels, which either don't exist in superheroes games or are actual, you know, hit locations in heroic games.  Dropping the dubious concept entirely would make building skill levels much easier and cleaner.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, Hugh Neilson said:

You don't buy "OCV skill levels" or "DCV skill levels".  One skill level adds either 1 OCV, 1 DCV or 1/2 DC.

 

You could purchase 'DCV' Skill Levels in older versions of Hero. And in those cases if you purchased a Skill Level with DCV you could not use them to increase damage.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The "all DCV level" was always a kludge, and never worked quite right.  Does it still exist in 6e?

 

Why buy a "combat skill level" for DCV only rather than buy "DCV, only when doing X"?  I would not pay 5 points for +1 skill level, all combat, DCV only  - I'll just buy +1 DCV, which I do not have to use a zero phase action to "assign".


 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
23 hours ago, Christopher R Taylor said:

You're better off doing it that way, since you're getting ripped off if you buy it as a skill level.

 

And therein lies the problem.  I'm fine with multiple ways of achieving the same, or similar, mechanical effect, but only when they carry the same, or at least similar, costs.  Paying 20% more to get the same effect another way is already excessive, and that's paying 6 points instead of 5.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, ScottishFox said:

The best reason I've seen so far - at one of the tables I run - is that you've hit the campaign OCV/DCV cap and that the 10pt all combat level is now the same price as double-cost OCV/DCV point and more flexible.

Wouldn't it still be better to buy a 5pt DCV level and a 5pt OCV level? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, ScottishFox said:

The best reason I've seen so far - at one of the tables I run - is that you've hit the campaign OCV/DCV cap and that the 10pt all combat level is now the same price as double-cost OCV/DCV point and more flexible.

 

YMMV, but for me "because it might actually be worth it if the cost of the other way to buy a similar ability were doubled" does not suggest the ability is appropriately priced.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

+1 OCV costs 5 points.  What should "only with ranged attacks" or "only with HTH attacks be as a limitation?  +1 with a broad group of ranged or HTH attacks should reasonably carry a higher limitation, and a narrow group is even more limited than that.  Only with one attack is even more limited. 

 

Even if we dropped off one point for "only range" or "only HTH", that's 4 points, 3 for a broad group, 2 for a narrow group and 1 for a single attack, if each declines by one point.

 

Viewed another way, 1 skill level with three maneuvers costs 5 points.  It can deliver OCV, DCV or damage, so only getting one seems pretty limiting on its own.  Even -1/2 would reduce the cost to 2 points.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Champions has always had a philosophical problem with its limitation values.  The problem being that they aren't consistent, and this results in weird price differences.

 

Part of the philosophy of the game is the idea that you get what you pay for.  But there's an undercurrent of mistrust there as well, that maybe somebody has found a way to sneak something through.  As a result, there has long been a tendency to undervalue limitations and price things higher than they should be.  This is evident any time you look at a power or ability that is effectively a "pre-limited" version of another power.  Skill Levels are an example of this.  In 6th edition they are primarily limited OCV, in earlier editions they are limited Dex.  But you can't build Dex back out of the Skill Levels -- it comes out way more expensive.  That's because the "hidden limitations" that make up Skill Level pricing are too low.

 

You will never ever get a satisfactory price relationship with these pre-limited powers until you address this philosophical problem.  Or How I Leaned to Stop Worrying and Love the Limitation.

 

Now to a certain degree, that fear makes sense.  Harry the Werewolf has powers that only work during a full moon.  But you just know that Harry's player is going to bitch and moan every time the game takes place any other time of the month, until the GM caves in and skips over most of that time.  As a result, you don't want to give him the -5 limitation that "only during a full moon" is probably actually worth.  Instead you want to give him maybe -1/2 or so (too far in the other direction).  There's a conflict between how technically limiting something may theoretically be, and how actually limiting it will be in the game.

 

Relating this to Skill Levels, of course +1 OCV across the board is better than a 2 point level that gives you +1 with a single attack.  But what about Johnny Lightning Bolt, whose only attack is a 15D6 Energy Blast?  That 2 point level is giving him +1 OCV with every attack he ever intends to use.  Why does he get such a great discount?  You can second guess yourself forever when it comes to pricing things.  You have to either accept that in certain situations a guy is going to get a nice cost break, or you have to accept that you can't rebuilt a basic game mechanic out of its component parts.  The only other option is to drive yourself crazy, forever, which is apparently what many of you have chosen. ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

On the micro point

 

For 20 points, Johnny Lightning Bolt gets +10 OCV with his Lightning Bolt. 

 

For 30 points, he could have the choice of +10 OCV, +10 DCV or +5d6 damage with his Lightning Bolt.  And he can have a small group of attacks, so he has actually lost some value there.

 

That 10 points buys a ton of versatility.  The opponent is Stunned, Entangled or otherwise low DCV?  +5d6 is a lot better than +10 OCV.  Down to 3 STUN?  Extra DCV feels pretty useful.

 

If Johnny tosses that Lightning Bolt into a Multipower later and adds a couple of extra attacks, the extra 10 points becomes that much more valuable.

 

On the macro point

 

Limitations are often hugely short of the actual impact.  Defenses "only vs" are a primary culprit.  Really, only -1/2 for "only versus electricity"?  Maybe if Johnny is the only opponent I'll ever face, but would you let me buy Defenses against everything but electricity for -2 if I'd meet other opponents?

 

If the game wishes to sell itself on the basis that "you get what you pay for, and you pay for what you get", then yes these balance issues should be addressed.

 

With Harry the Werewolf, the answer is to sit down and have a rational discussion.  If Harry gets that -5 limitation, then there will rarely be a full moon - suck it up, and build a viable character for daylight encounters.  If it will be a full moon more often than not, a reduced limitation is appropriate.  A lot depends on how much control Harry has over the timing of activity, and that limitation may very well mean "only gets to play in every sixth scenario" if he's useless outside a full moon.  That's no more a viable character than one who spends all his points on one huge Blast, and should be disallowed  by the GM just as quickly.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/20/2019 at 7:48 PM, Hugh Neilson said:

 

YMMV, but for me "because it might actually be worth it if the cost of the other way to buy a similar ability were doubled" does not suggest the ability is appropriately priced.

 

We are not in disagreement.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
46 minutes ago, Christopher R Taylor said:

I think we'd be better off working out the prices skill levels ought to cost than rehashing how screwed up they are again and again.

I think we'd be better off not having two different ways to buy the same thing, and telling players that if they want OCV they should buy OCV by buying OCV (with whatever Limitations and Advantages they and their GM think make sense). 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Quote

I think we'd be better off not having two different ways to buy the same thing

 

OK but then we're in the same territory as deleting Transfer and saying "build it yourself."  It would be easier for players and builds if you had pre-built skill levels that people could just buy and indicate with a single, simple line rather than yet another block o' text don't you think?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
20 minutes ago, Christopher R Taylor said:

OK but then we're in the same territory as deleting Transfer and saying "build it yourself."  It would be easier for players and builds if you had pre-built skill levels that people could just buy and indicate with a single, simple line rather than yet another block o' text don't you think?

I don't agree with you that CSLs should exist.  I hold that CSLs have no business existing in 6e and are garbage left over from DEX determining CV. 

Bob wants to take his OCV from 7 to 9?  Then he should buy another two points of OCV.  That's even simpler than mucking about with having OCV be both its own thing and a skill thing. 

 

I also don't believe that any price variation from breadth of CV applicability is good for the game.  If Laser Eye Larry can buy +1 OCV for 2pts while Swordgun Fistkick has to pay 5pts for the same effect, certain character concepts become cheaper for no good reason. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Honestly, it wouldn't feel like HERO system without combat skill levels.  I mostly do heroic campaigns now, so that is probably a factor.

 

But I do like guys who are good at certain things and not others and the idea of shifting the focus of your skill towards offense, defense or damage feels right.

 

Static OCV and DCV numbers don't feel right by themselves.  I like them as a baseline, but there has to be some room for offensive and defensive shifting.

 

Plus I find skill levels to be pretty intuitive for the players.  You have fixed offense and defense values and you have a number of floaters that you can shift to one side or the other when your turn starts.

 

That was one of my biggest gripes with D&D 5th edition.  A level 20 fighter is just as easy to hit as he was at level 1.  His offense soars over the levels, but aside from gear upgrades, he's as easy to hit as the day he started.

 

Meanwhile in Fantasy HERO the equivalent fighter has OCV/DCV values in the 7-8 range, plus martial maneuvers with his weapons of choice and 4-6 combat skill levels to float around.  If he doesn't want the novice to hit him - then he doesn't get hit.

 

Based on a decent amount of martial arts training over the decades - this feels more accurate to me.  It's part of why I've stayed with Fantasy HERO.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...