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Having an issue with 2 combat PCs


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#1 malkieth

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Posted 31 March 2013 - 12:30 PM

Hi, 

Had a session last night and during the combat encounters I found that the two main PCs I have for combat have "reckless cleave" action card. This is a highly powerful card which I have noticed sees these characters take down monsters like trolls with as little as 2 hits at times. This is proving to give me a headache to create challenging combat situations for my party. 

 

Currently I have been considering making some subtle changes to the card, be it increasing the recharge time and stopping them from being able to put recharge tokens on defences to increase damage. As I've found defences are barely used by such characters. 

 

The other possibility I have thought of is giving reckless cleave to all monsters that they face so they will be hit back just as hard if not harder than the PCs. 

 

Have other GMs had similar issues with this card? And if so how have they dealt with it? 

 

Any ideas would be appreciated.

 

Thanks 



#2 Emirikol

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Posted 31 March 2013 - 04:15 PM

You need to nerf this RIGHT AWAY before it gets worse.  See my house rules in my sig.  Tell the players that you're nerfing it (and a couple others) and they can choose a different card.

 

DO IT NOW.  It is as broken as double strike and rapid fire were before they got nerfed as well.

 

Tell them that it will prevent you from having to dice escalate later.

 

jh



#3 gmanjkd

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Posted 31 March 2013 - 08:08 PM

@ Emirikol,  were these 3 cards officially nerfed?  If so where can I find these nerfed versions?  Thanks Emirikol!

 

Gary

 



#4 gmanjkd

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Posted 31 March 2013 - 08:08 PM

@ Emirikol,  were these 3 cards officially nerfed?  If so where can I find these nerfed versions?  Thanks Emirikol!

 

Gary

 



#5 khaali

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Posted 31 March 2013 - 08:32 PM

There is an official new version for Double strike and Rapid fire: http://www.fantasyfl...?eidm=93&esem=4

There is no official new version for reckless cleave, but many GM have nerfed it. Personnaly, I decided that this card (and some others) are considered Advanced, only for rank > 3.

 



#6 Yepesnopes

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Posted 31 March 2013 - 09:47 PM

Welcome to the club.

I am trying to discuss this card and some others which are also broken (you will discover them sooner or later) in this thread.

I proposed my own version, but I will also like to see what other people proposes, the more heads thinking about it the better.

 

@Emirikol: I will check at your house rules, I did not know you had a version of reckless cleave.

 

Cheers,

Yepes


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#7 ragnar63

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Posted 01 April 2013 - 02:38 AM

I am afraid that there are numerous cards that quickly become broken, when combined with other action cards particularly. This will get worse as your PC's collect Action Cards. Unfortunately the Core combat cards were never playtested with what came later in mind. In my group we changed our combat cards twice because of the GM's frustration at NPC's dying too quickly.Partly this is because combats are badly written by FFG. I would advise not hamstringing the PC's ability to do damage to NPC's too much otherwise they may well go the other way and turn every combat PC into the equivalent of Ironbreakers with armour, shields and defensive cards. Thats what happened with us just before we called it a day.

What GM's have got to do is give the NPC's the offensive and defensive firepower of PC's and make combat that much more deadly for PC's. If necessary bring back 2nd Edition Fate Points to replace fortune points if necessary, to partially mitigate this. This the third edition has lost, particularly at first rank where PC's are already too close to heroes before they have rolled a dice. In 1st and 2nd editions, beginning PC's were not marginally much better than NPC's in their first career.



#8 malkieth

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Posted 01 April 2013 - 07:35 PM

After some of that input… I'm thinking it might be worth just adding recharge tokens to the action or something like depending on the rank of a character how often it can be used for an encounter…

I guess I find it annoying how well characters seem to fair against enemies in an encounter. Have discussed the issue with the players and in a way it is my fault allowing them to choose careers this time around, as they were new players. Next time I will make them generate random careers.  And also will limit the use of actions like reckless cleave and the like to be dependant on characters rank level.

I do want my PCs to feel mortal and not god like. Ironically this party killed the beast of falguimere when they first encountered it after smashing up two trolls, the best part is they are all struggling with wounds threshold now so even a single troll scares them. That being said, 2 characters at strength 5 with reckless cleave makes minimal work of a troll along with the support attacks from a crossbowman, wizard and a Wardancer. 

Do find cards like these though annoying and over powering… My pcs have admitted the actions are their trump cards as such. I just want to challenge them can't find a balance really, which is what I am looking for. 



#9 Yepesnopes

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Posted 01 April 2013 - 08:44 PM

ragnar63 said:

I am afraid that there are numerous cards that quickly become broken, when combined with other action cards particularly. This will get worse as your PC's collect Action Cards. Unfortunately the Core combat cards were never playtested with what came later in mind. In my group we changed our combat cards twice because of the GM's frustration at NPC's dying too quickly.Partly this is because combats are badly written by FFG. I would advise not hamstringing the PC's ability to do damage to NPC's too much otherwise they may well go the other way and turn every combat PC into the equivalent of Ironbreakers with armour, shields and defensive cards. Thats what happened with us just before we called it a day.

What GM's have got to do is give the NPC's the offensive and defensive firepower of PC's and make combat that much more deadly for PC's. If necessary bring back 2nd Edition Fate Points to replace fortune points if necessary, to partially mitigate this. This the third edition has lost, particularly at first rank where PC's are already too close to heroes before they have rolled a dice. In 1st and 2nd editions, beginning PC's were not marginally much better than NPC's in their first career.

Sadly to say, but you are totally right. I have the same feelings and experience with this game. We have not yet got to the point to dump the game, but we are dangerously close to it, I am trying to hold it long enough to end the current campaing.

 

Cheers,

Yepes


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#10 valvorik

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Posted 02 April 2013 - 01:55 AM

I took Reckless Cleave out of the game and don't allow more than one of any non-basic action in the game.  Luckily I did this before anyone took it so it was changing a character's existing choice mix.

 



#11 ragnar63

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Posted 02 April 2013 - 08:25 PM

valvorik said:

I took Reckless Cleave out of the game and don't allow more than one of any non-basic action in the game.  Luckily I did this before anyone took it so it was changing a character's existing choice mix.

 

Rather sounds like you might as well take the cards out of the game full stop. It will certainly make certain professions a bit of a waste of time if they can only really take the compulsory action card per career.

The solution in my book is to give the NPC's access to the same cards as the players, makes combat a whole bundle more deadly. I am sure Emirikol would approve of that.



#12 Yepesnopes

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Posted 02 April 2013 - 09:27 PM

ragnar63 said:

Rather sounds like you might as well take the cards out of the game full stop. It will certainly make certain professions a bit of a waste of time if they can only really take the compulsory action card per career.

Indeed, and I tried this, which is the approach of the new Star Wars EotE.

No action cards.

Each success adds +1 damage

A list of effects for boons and sigmar comets.

There are some problems arising though, the whole character advance thing needs a lot of rework.

May be some day I will go back to work on it.


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#13 valvorik

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Posted 03 April 2013 - 12:30 PM

ragnar63 said:

 

Rather sounds like you might as well take the cards out of the game full stop. It will certainly make certain professions a bit of a waste of time if they can only really take the compulsory action card per career.

The solution in my book is to give the NPC's access to the same cards as the players, makes combat a whole bundle more deadly. I am sure Emirikol would approve of that.

 

 

You mean all action cards out of game? Noooo, I permit just one of each type as in the core set etc. come with one of each, once it's taken that's that.  Good Witch Hunter/Bad Witch Hunter is the only exception as it came with two and is obviously intended for a "Green/Red Team use".

I picked up a Players Box of cards and use those "duplicate" cards for NPCs.  I order two of each POD for same reason etc.  And I guess, I should admit, Beastmen do get Reckless Cleave at times.  Bwa hah hah, it's an NPC action card only!   Though I don't even let NPC's use that "staple you in place" ranged attack card.



#14 Jericho

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Posted 03 April 2013 - 04:53 PM

Funny, I often read threads like these but I have yet to encounter the same problems in my group.

And my PCs are all rank 4, with 2 dwarfs and 1 human being very powerful.

I would personnally suggest you make the encounters more difficult by raising the opponents power level, not by nerfing the cards.

There are so many ways that you can do that. Better armour, numbers, ranged attacks, attacks ignoring soak, etc.

Characters with 5 strength and Reckless Cleave basically are Conan. 5 Strength is like what, an orc? A Black orc?

 

Try this for once: have them encounter disciplined mercenaries, Str4 To4 WS trained, halberds, plate and chain, thundering blow, improved guarded position. Maybe 4 of them in formation, one always uses improved guarded position each round. At least 2 hit on the same PC. Have 3 crossbowmen standing behind as support if the PCs want to go ranged.

I garantee you they will feel the pain.

Give your Trolls mail shirts, or two handed axes (troll size, DR 8, CR 2).

 

My two cents.


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#15 ragnar63

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Posted 03 April 2013 - 08:23 PM

Jericho said:

Funny, I often read threads like these but I have yet to encounter the same problems in my group.

And my PCs are all rank 4, with 2 dwarfs and 1 human being very powerful.

I would personnally suggest you make the encounters more difficult by raising the opponents power level, not by nerfing the cards.

There are so many ways that you can do that. Better armour, numbers, ranged attacks, attacks ignoring soak, etc.

Characters with 5 strength and Reckless Cleave basically are Conan. 5 Strength is like what, an orc? A Black orc?

 

Try this for once: have them encounter disciplined mercenaries, Str4 To4 WS trained, halberds, plate and chain, thundering blow, improved guarded position. Maybe 4 of them in formation, one always uses improved guarded position each round. At least 2 hit on the same PC. Have 3 crossbowmen standing behind as support if the PCs want to go ranged.

I garantee you they will feel the pain.

Give your Trolls mail shirts, or two handed axes (troll size, DR 8, CR 2).

 

My two cents.

My feelings exactly!



#16 flyndad

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Posted 05 April 2013 - 06:05 AM

I must say that I am in the same camp as Jericho and Ragnar on this one.

Sometimes I feel like I am GMing totally off the reservation when I read threads like these.

My feelings are: This is ROLEPLAY folks! Why would any GM allow the "official rules" to limit their control over the game?

On a rare occasion I have had players with card/card combos that would typically make them "too powerfull", but this has NEVER been a problem. Simply using some imagination solves the "issue" everytime.  There are 1000 ways to deal with it, at the moment, on the fly, with NO negative consequences what so ever.  They key is to do so without the players feeling like they are at the whimsicle mercy of the GM; that all the goings on are within the confines of the game rules.

The "Big Picture" issue is to make the PC feel "mortal", that they are being challenged by the game. Is that sooo hard to do? regardless of what action cards they utilize? This isn't Warhammer Quest. PC's don't get X amount of gold for killing a monster.  

This EXACT situation came up just last night.

***SPOILERS!!!!!*** Horror of Hugeldal

In the opening combat scene I had a Gambler PC with a Long Bow (don't ask) immediately jump ontop of the wagon the PC's were using to travel to Hugeldal and used Rapid Fire on one of the three bandits along the treeline. After some REALLY amazing dice rolls, 2 of the treeline bandits were dead AND Tarwin Fleisher was wounded,… in ONE TURN of ONE PC !!  I immediately felt as though the player with the Gambler sank a little at the lack of challenge. Solution??  Three more bandits were hiding in the treeline right next to the Gambler and all three attacked, each using their expertise dice with the last crossbow bolt having been intentionally tainted with the Ghoulpox. Result?? Gambler PC starts the next turn with 2 wounds left, suffering from the Rattled condition, contracted a rather nasty disease AND has 3 very angry bandits to deal with .. Needless to say, the Gambler is feeling quite mortal now and decided to jump off the wagon and asked me if she could get some defensive benefit if she crawled under it.   Problem Solved.

Removing "over powered" cards from the game is NOT "fun" for the players. I like to see a players excitement when finding one of these cards available for their charachter. You can almost see the wheels turning in their heads with how they plan to use it, thinking it gives them a sense of advantage. 

 

Other ways to deal with "powerful" cards:

1. Just because an NPC card says it has 15 wounds does NOT mean you, as GM, can't change it. You CAN, and can do so on the fly. Not ALL Gors are EXACTELY the same,… how boring,.. adjust wounds slightly up or down as needed to give that creature one last wack at a PC if you feel the PC should have lost more wounds.   

PC's cut every one of your monsters down waaay tooo fast? Need that last one to survive 4 more rounds?,.. well just DO IT!!  So what if your players are wondering why a simple Gor just won't DIE!?!   If they start to question why,.. well,.. Use Your Imagination in a skillful way! ….. again, a 1000 different ways to address it,..  Maybe the PC's search the body when it FINALLY dies and they find a Mark of one of the Chaos Gods on it, and for some "unknown" reason this particular Gor was being closely watched by it's Chaos God controller,…..   maybe, upon a REALLY successful Observation check the PC's discover some unusual looking plant in it's stomach, which, if they decide to investigate further, they come to find is an extremely rare and exotic herb that only grows in this very small particular area of The Old World,…. This alone could make a pretty interesting one off side adventure.. 

And all of this is needed only IF the PC's care to find out WHY that Gor wouldn't go down. 90% of the time they won't. I have found that the vast majority of the time they simply say "MAN!!,.. That was one TOUGH mother! " and move on,…. 

 

I suppose my point is that there are  SO MANY tools WFRP3e offers to GM's to balance an "over powered" player that  powerful action cards shouldn't really be an issue,….   

[ fully preparing myself to get slammed reagrding this post……] enfadado  

 

 

 



#17 No:12

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Posted 06 April 2013 - 05:47 AM

Hi,

Agree with Flyndad, Jericho and Ragnar.

There have been a few cards that I have felt the need to tweak (immobilising shot I'm lookin at you…), to avoid situations where mechanics break the suspension of disbelief. However, even at rank 4-5 PCs its not been a problem making encounters challenging by giving NPCs a little help (action cards and skill training). I do like combats to be hard, fast and deadly. 

I have to say though the players I GM for are mostly uninterested in trying to create game breaking combo's, where it has occurred a swift chat has sorted it without any hard feelings. In three years of 3rd ed ive only had to run for four characters with a stat of 5, none in str and tou. As has been said before in many other threads if your players are trying to create Conans then they will leave stat weaknesses elsewhere….



#18 Necrozius

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Posted 07 April 2013 - 02:37 PM

Jericho said:

Funny, I often read threads like these but I have yet to encounter the same problems in my group.

And my PCs are all rank 4, with 2 dwarfs and 1 human being very powerful.

I would personnally suggest you make the encounters more difficult by raising the opponents power level, not by nerfing the cards.

There are so many ways that you can do that. Better armour, numbers, ranged attacks, attacks ignoring soak, etc.

Characters with 5 strength and Reckless Cleave basically are Conan. 5 Strength is like what, an orc? A Black orc?

Try this for once: have them encounter disciplined mercenaries, Str4 To4 WS trained, halberds, plate and chain, thundering blow, improved guarded position. Maybe 4 of them in formation, one always uses improved guarded position each round. At least 2 hit on the same PC. Have 3 crossbowmen standing behind as support if the PCs want to go ranged.

I garantee you they will feel the pain.

Give your Trolls mail shirts, or two handed axes (troll size, DR 8, CR 2).

My two cents.

Sorry to full post quote, but this information is so valuable to these recurring discussions that I felt it was worth it.

Give armor, weapons and Action Cards to your antagonists. Makes a HUGE difference.

Oh and go all out in the first round. Use the A/C/E budget!

 



#19 Emirikol

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Posted 07 April 2013 - 05:51 PM

My players just cake-walked an encounter in The Enemy Within.  I could have made it more difficult, but, I actually wanted to get to the inquisition part where they had to quiz the survivors..otherwise the combat was pointless and supposed to be easy.  The players looked at me like, "oh c'mon, give us a challenge!"

Next time…next time…. ;)

jh



#20 dvang

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Posted 11 April 2013 - 07:18 AM

I have to agree with a lot of what others are saying. I wouldn't necessarily nerf the players' cards.  I would compensate by buffing the NPCs.  Give them their own cards. Increase their wounds. Give them more A/C/E.  Simply increase the numbers of enemies in the encounter.  Etc.

This way you aren't taking anything away from the player, but are still keeping the difficulty up.  

Personally, I prefer adding wounds and A/C/E to my monsters to adjust a combat's difficulty.  If the players are smashing through enemies, start loading them up with A/C/E.  Have them use them on PC attacks, especially attacks like Reckless Cleave.  Adding 5 misfortune dice to a PC's attack is nothing to scoff at, for example.

Really, boiled down, Warhammer is about the story.  NPCs die when YOU decide they should die (especially true for bosses).  The dice merely help to tell the story.






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