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ScottishFox

Pillars of Eternity 1 - HERO

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Having wrapped up our Pathfinder campaign I convinced the players to try a Pen and Paper play through of Pillars of Eternity I using HERO system and the Pillars of Eternity 2 class advancement schemes.

 

In our last campaign I hadn't restricted spells to per/day or per/long-rest casting and as a result - over time - the characters felt very much like Fantasy super-heroes instead of classic D&D characters.

 

This time we're using a House Rule of all spells and class special abilities being restricted with per-fight charges.  We've tossed Multipower to the wind as it was universally agreed (at our table of 5) that the discounting was too good and lead to characters having a host of spells since they could add new ones for just 2-3 points.

 

Each ability is bought separately, but we used the Hero Designer customer cost multiplier of 0.4.  Each major ability is now 5-6 points and everyone is pretty happy with that.

Spell caster abilities are build on 2 recoverable charges - per spell level - per combat and cast times from the game.  A spell that takes 3 seconds to cast leaves the caster immobile and vulnerable until 3 segments (on their DEX) after they started casting.

Martial types use class resources (Fury, Discipline, etc.) that are also recoverable charges - per combat - but have slightly larger numbers since they are not broken into ranks / levels.

 

Session 1 was largely character creation and then the Prologue Encampment.

 

Dropping from 350 point end-game heroes back to 125 point beginners took a few minutes to get used to.  No magic weapons, no invincible golden plate armor, no Staff of the Element Lords, etc.  Back to good old settlers looking for a free land deal in Gilded Vale to help repopulate the area after a recent civil war had decimated the population.

 

So far - so good!

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Session 2 went by just fine.  Did the intro dungeon and the Cilant Lis cutscene.

 

The players made their way to Gilded Vale where they promptly lost their sh*t at discovering the Hollow Born malady and Lord Raedric's hanging tree.

The players were getting caught up on the lore of Eora and system conversion was less prominent.

 

A fair whack of work will need to be done by me as I convert 6 of the class trees from Pillars 2 to HERO system (one guy multi-classed).

 

Between game-maps.com and some of the walk-through sites I've been able to run this pretty close to pen and paper so far without too much additional prep work.

 

More to come!

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53 minutes ago, Tywyll said:

Any conversions yet? Would love to see them!

 

Nothing set in stone yet.  My Saturday group is pretty tolerant of my systems tinkering so we're trying to get the right feel while maintaining a good balance between characters.

 

Stats converted pretty much directly.  The only tricky stat from PoE is Perception which contributes to Accuracy (OCV) and Reflex (DEX Rolls).

Characters get 5 CP per level for Stats and Skills along with their level up active/passive ability choices.

Weapon conversion turned out to be very easy.  PoE max weapon damage is 200% of max weapon damage in HERO. 

Ex:  Saber max damage (prior to skill / STR bonuses) is 18 points.  Cut that in half and max damage 9 = 1.5d6 K.  I tested several weapons and the formula works pretty consistently.

PoE weapons with +5 Accuracy are +1 OCV in HERO.

I brought back the older FH edition power of Piercing.  Rather than making weapons armor piercing they get a flat piercing amount based 2/3rds of their DR bypass rating.

Armor in PoE is 50%  higher than HERO system values so as an example they have Plate Armor as DR 12 where HERO would have 8 rPD/rED.

 

So far we're using the "per encounter" resource system of PoE 2 since limiting spell casters to a very small number of daily casts would require those spells to have very large effects on combat outcome.

 

So far so good.  If the players are amenable I'll upload some character sheets in the near future.

 

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16 hours ago, ScottishFox said:

 

Nothing set in stone yet.  My Saturday group is pretty tolerant of my systems tinkering so we're trying to get the right feel while maintaining a good balance between characters.

 

<snip>

I brought back the older FH edition power of Piercing.  <snip>

 

So far so good.  If the players are amenable I'll upload some character sheets in the near future.

 

 

Very cool. Nice breakdown!

 

What's the Piercing power?

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5 hours ago, Tywyll said:

 

Very cool. Nice breakdown!

 

What's the Piercing power?

 

If I remember correctly it is a flat 3 points to bypass 1 point of resistant defense.  It's been a couple of decades so I might be off a little on the original pricing.

 

But, it's pretty handy to simulate something like a stiletto where it's so sharp and pointy that you let it ignore the first two points of armor, but not be armor piercing against a dragon.

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36 minutes ago, ScottishFox said:

 

If I remember correctly it is a flat 3 points to bypass 1 point of resistant defense.  It's been a couple of decades so I might be off a little on the original pricing.

 

But, it's pretty handy to simulate something like a stiletto where it's so sharp and pointy that you let it ignore the first two points of armor, but not be armor piercing against a dragon.

 

Nice! Do you remember which edition it came from?

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This last Saturday our intrepid band of adventurer's worked their way down to the 3rd level of the Endless Paths of Od Nua.

 

There they met the Ogre Thulgar and learned of the cannibalistic tribe of Ogre Druid's that would need to be defeated to reach the 4th level.

 

They promptly packed up their !@#$ and headed to Defiance Bay which had me scrambling to collect all of the quest givers and available plot threads as they derailed my plans for the day.  :)

 

So far the game is working out pretty well.  The per-fight resources are working well with the magic/maneuvers having big impacts.  The flip side is having those moves thwarted REALLY hurts (spell interrupts, enemies diving for cover, blocking, etc.).

 

The HERO converted spell casting rules hit the spot in terms of feel.

 

Each rank of spells has some quick cast (1/2 or full phase) spells that are weaker than the others of the same rank.  Stronger spells have a cast time of 3.0 to 4.5 seconds.  Which in HERO is a very long time.  During this casting window the casters can be interrupted and the delay allows defenders to always have an option available (dodge, dive for cover, etc.) to avoid the hard hitting spells.

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Last Saturday went well though using HERO to simulate the abilities has resulted in some cost differential problems.

 

I've decided to go an unusual route and use a default cost of zero for all abilities that are on the level-up rails.

Characters will get a smaller amount of CP for stats, skills and custom abilities, but everything on the class lists will be ignored for character totals.

 

I'll have to see how this plays out as one of the things HERO does well is balance point costs of abilities.  If the level-up abilities aren't netting out in terms of cost it's probably because they're inherently unbalanced in power.

 

 

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