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FireHive

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  1. I'd work on weakening them a bit before the encounter and holding the pressure. Give them a test that attacks their fatigue and before they can rest hit them with an enemy. Several stats will be fatigued and almost everyone will be at -10 to all tests. Then, to help with balance, I build a potential 2 part battle. Send the regular threat lvl of enemies and play as normal and if they are still killing it then "SUDDENLY"... Backup has arrived, a sniper is in position, the boss kicks in a special talent that summons daemons or brings the dead to life, a command order causes grunts to throw inferno grenades or molotov cocktails setting fire to your cover. Really, anything you can think of to take the advantage away from the players and re-energize the battlefield so players must to adjust their usual strategy.
  2. Balance for me involved creating a system where each character's role offers a varied, yet equal importance in all aspects of a game. I look to DnD as the bellwether for this (though many hate to make similarities). You can choose to play as an elf/dwarf/human/gnome/giant in any number of roles. Generally speaking, some builds synergies better than others, but the rule-set was designed so a gnome/fairy bard can be as important as a Goliath Barbarian in BOTH combat and roleplay. In narrative situations, the Bard may coerce while the barbarian intimidates with a potential success on either side based on dice roles and the NPC's disposition. DH honors narrative time in a similar way and it works very well (i'd say even better with built in mental narrative mechanics like subtlety/corruption/insanity/and influence to keep player actions in check). In DnD combat, the Barbarian may be uncontested in strength and power, but the Bard, with very little offensive skills, still has the ability to use his charisma to Buff, heal, or protect his warriors contributing invaluably to the fight while staying true to his character. The current build of DH does not support its "non-combat" player builds in this fashion. If you decide to avoid advancing a broken dodge skill and investing heavily in battle-based aptitudes, to instead be a Nobel bureaucrat, you would very well have little to nothing to contribute in structured combat and will be left as a by-standard to a very large mechanical aspect of the game. Though this may make sense realistically, at the end of the day this is a game designed to be played for enjoyment first and foremost. The lack of meaningful inclusion in a gaming situation based on build is "imbalance" IMO and only further encourages power builds. DH could have countered this by investing more in-combat abilities for people advancing in Leadership/social/fellowship/influence. These characteristics are perfect for stat boosting, removing fatigue/fear/stunned effects, and introducing more entertaining out-of-combat skill talents, and controlling reinforcements. I actually made a list of about 16 talent options for players who wish to build characters with social aptitudes, and the really sad thing is most were pulled right out of existing official supplements and NPC rules from the Rulebook itself! Even worse, most are far more flavorful and fun than the existing talent options. I know that some would argue it's the genius of the game is to allow you build this into your campaigns, but in practice, players design characters based on what they know is available at creation. If these options aren't readily available, players will shy away from perceived fluff builds in lieu of visibly effective combat builds. You could say I may have fixed my own complaint by simply building these house rules, but in truth, most of these "built talents" have 0 play testing and may get out of hand if they make up too much of a campaign. ------ DH RULEBOOK TALENTS Socially Resilient: Once per conversation, the magnate may make another character in the conversation re-roll one successful skill test which targeted him. Do You Know Who I Was?: The dissolute noble can, as a Full Action, make an Ordinary (+10) Deceive test. If he succeeds on the test, a number of characters in line of sight and earshot (up to his Fellowship bonus in metres) suffers one level of temporary Fatigue from his sordid presence. This effect lasts for a number of rounds equal to his Fellowship bonus and does not stack with multiple uses. When used in narrative time, this action can be taken as part of conversation. Leverage: Once per round, the Rogue Trader may use his Influence in place of another characteristic for a single test. If used in narrative time, the effects of this last for one hour. Dig In: As a Half Action, the Cadre Officer may make an Ordinary (+10) Command test to instruct his allies to take cover. If he succeeds, a number of allies in line of sight and earshot of the character (up to his Intelligence bonus) increase the armour granted to them by their current cover by 2. This bonus lasts until those characters leave their current cover, and does not stack with multiple uses. Haggle: A merchant gains a +20 bonus when making an Opposed Commerce test. Entertaining: A performancer can re-roll a Charm test. Holy Oration: Once per encounter, as a Full Action, a preacher may make an Ordinary (+10) Command test to inspire his allies. If he succeeds, a number of allies in line of sight and earshot of the character (up to the character’s Fellowship bonus) immediately gain one temporary Fate point. These points last until the end of the current encounter, and can be spent in the same way as a normal Fate point Shady Deals: A dealer can use his illicit connections to acquire hard-to-find items for PCs. If a PC uses this, he gains a +10 bonus to his next Requisition test. If the test fails, however, the warband’s Subtlety value decreases by 2d10. TAU Rogue Trader TALENTS Perfect Lure Type: Full Action Subtype: Movement, Fellowship The Explorer makes a Challenging (+0) Fellowship Test. If he succeeds, one enemy within 30 metres gains a +10 bonus to Weapon Skill and Ballistic Skill Tests to strike the Explorer and suffers a –30 penalty Weapon Skill and Ballistic Skill Tests for attacks made against the Explorer’s allies. For every Degree of Success he scores on the Test, he can affect one additional foe within range this way. GREATER THAN THE SUM Prerequisites: Fellowship 45, New Allies Once per session, the Explorer may spend a Fate Point and either gain the benefits of a Talent an ally possesses or grant the benefits of a Talent he possesses to an ally. The character temporarily receiving the effects of the Talent need not meet its Prerequisites to benefit from it. This effect persists until the end of the encounter Follow My Lead Type: Half Action Subtypes: Concentration Until the beginning of his next Turn, each allied Tau character within 10 metres who undertakes the same Half Action this Explorer performs after his Follow My Lead Action gains a +10 bonus to any Tests associated with that Action.
  3. Glad to hear it wasn't awkward. What I may do is ask them to roll a second character if they loose a limb or something particularity grave and I introduce them in a natural way. Then, as the player finally heals, the PC can choose to jump back to their original build or leave them while I NPC the other for future sessions. It could give me the ability to create great moments by capturing/Killing a former PC that the group is actually emotionally invested in rather than some "important" NPC no one has met.
  4. Really liking the idea of playing with addiction and endurance. Forcing an endless choice between rest and taking yet another hit of slow-release Stimm and/or morphine to pursue a timely lead. Ideally, characters will never have time to recover fully making encounters more and more risky (though weapon damage will be controlled and individual encounters on the easy side). For my group of mainly DnD (combat-loving) friends, it will be a nice learning experience in the importance of non-combat characters and their influence/persuasiveness. The fatigue and pain will also help push the insanity track for some as they try to deal with the stress. Lastly it could provide a bit of comedy in the event the team must infiltrate an aristocratic event while drugged up/tweaking. I think I'll tweak my rules for a slow release stimm and morphine (1 will ignore existing wounds for the purpose of calculating future damage and the other will boost Toughness tests and Bonus's for avoiding damage all together). Of course they will increase fatigue, slowly reduced potency, and be highly addictive really raising the stakes of the mission over time.
  5. I agree this is an issue. The distribution of aptitude types vs. Available talents (good or bad) is skewed. I actually addressed this in my personal house rules by building several additional talents for lesser picks like fieldcraft ad fellowship. It's also one of the reasons I offer the 7th aptitude (though switching is just as good) as it eases the pressure for players to metagame their stats while still maintaining an advancement structure (and I always try to reward flawed/fun character play over optimised ones). Also we only play once every other week so a small growth in relative aptitude matching is fine (if they get to good I can always make the enemies tougher )
  6. So this is my first campaign with DH. I have had an idea brewing in my mind for the last few years and have recently decided to make the dive into the handbook to get something on paper. After acquainting myself to the rule-set, while I build my long-awaited campaign, I find a large potential problem arising. Player injury recovery time does not fit well with a short timeline campaign. In a situation where players only have a few weeks time to solve an issue, and a crippling injury can take them out for most of the plot, i am struggling to find a way to keep my players "active" through the whole campaign outside replacing their characters left and right. I have read several threads on player death, and i understand it's built into the game and will happen. However, in a campaign where players may be in combat several times in a week, with little rest, stacking injuries seem justified, yet dangerously against this type of action movie theme. I am wondering if anyone has come up with intuitive solutions to deal with PC's who are knocked out of games due to injury (but will eventually return before the end). I was looking for ways to have players run multiple PC's in case one is injured or unavailable for the event. However I fear the awkward possibility of both characters "on screen" at the same time would result in a player essentially talking with themselves. Currently, I am leaning towards granting players twice their standard healing with no required "rest" unless the damage is critical. This recovery process can also stack with first aid tests (which function RAW) to help offset daily injuries. Additionally, the medical team will have made a slow release custom "Stimm" drug that lasts for 12 hours. This drug will "ignore" TB+1d5 in existing wounds when calculating new injuries, even if they have existing critical damage (to potentially avoid adding critical effects when taking damage). It will of course be highly addictive and loose potency over time. If characters die, then they die, but I would prefer not to end a campaign with a completely different party than we started with. Any thoughts would be appreciated.
  7. I personally found a simple compromise is to let everyone just pick 1 additional aptitude of their choice. This additional aptitude represents a personal variance in life experience or physicality that should be reflected in their background. For me, it's often used to grant my players a thematic Talent to help fulfill a personal character vision, or round out a weak link in the Party as a whole. It shifts your potential talent tree slightly without breaking the character's focus all together. -Maybe a highborn Administratum was previously sent to observe and record events with a Desparado who told him he would need to learn to draw more than his text if he was to work with him on a Feral World (granting him some aptitude in Ballistics). -Perhaps a Astra Telepathica Seeker spent his early years investigating mundane crimes undercover in a particularity dark underhive granting him some aptitude in fieldcraft (so he may take the Blind Fighting or Sprint talent more readily) or Weapon skill (As he may of had to take part in several brawls to keep his identity secret). That said, all examples may or may not fit the Lore entirely, but I am always willing to nudge the universe to accommodate a interesting PC creation.
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