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Aramithius

Get 2nd ed or tweak 1st ed?

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Especially curious how various in-game mechanics will or will not change... I do hope it will have the Psychic-Mechanics of the first Edition, cause I really love them. Like, really really... muchj better risk vs. reward system in my opinion then in other systems of the wh40k RPG-line.

 

sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but it's got the psychic system of Only War. =P

 

 

So there's one thing I might House Rule cause I don't like it or I might not House Rule it because I'm too lazy. 

Curses!

Edited by darkforce

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Hehe, guess our tastes in RP-Systems are quite different at least in that regard.

 

I blame Das Schwarze Auge 4th Edition. Ever since seeing the freeform model in action there, I keep thinking something like that ought to be the standard everywhere.  :lol: Not to mention the way its characters were created...

 

I remember a Dark Heresy Campaign of mine where the players got quite a lot of those, as I really like handing out Adventure-Specific rewards (like Peer-Talents and some Lore-Skills and Secret Tongue/Ciphers where also among them). Not that the Aptitude-System makes that impossible, by the simple virtue of allowing everyone to buy everything, however, it devalues those rewards... but then again, one could always say that being a problem of the restrictions of the Advancement-Scheme system in itself. 

 

You could still make it so that players have to have any advances they want to buy get "confirmed" by their GM first, with the requirement that they have to either reflect something that happened during the session or special training acquired during downtime. I've played games (in a different system) like this in the past, and thought it was a cool idea. :)

 

And yeah, I thought the original psychic system was best, too. I guess it was just a different vision due to a different design team.

 

But still, I'm curious for the second edition... not gonna adapt it for the campaign I'm writing currently though, since one does not change horses in mid-stream, right?

 

Understandable. ^^

 

I'm on the fence as well. DH2 does feature some cool new ideas (including desirable features introduced in the other games), but on the other hand it's also taking a few steps backwards, or not going far enough with other changes ...

I guess we shall see!

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4th Edition of the Dark Eye had sadly a few very big foul ups in the character creation section that could be exploited.

And as a GM i did not keep a too close eye on the necessary training sessions required to advance a skill (getting one or a special maneuver was a different thing) since they could make advancing very tiresome. And skill points in DSA are your bread and butter.

But i also love the 'free' advancement you have. You could go in any direction.

Pacifistic Healing Mage that only uses illusions and stuns in fights, soldier-with-bought-nobility learning etiquette ... fun times.

Something like that should be do-able for DH.

Edited by segara82
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huh... quite a lot of Dark Eye players in here (I, myself am one as well, a pretty avid one at that). Curiously, I also really like the Freeform Advances of Dark Eye 4, but it somehow... idk, might be some sort of fear of too much change or something (having played DH/RT/DW for quite a long time) I think the rank-system fits more with my vision of Warhammer 40k being mostly suffocating, keeping most people down etc etc. 

 

Interestingly enough, Dark Eye is currently getting a 5th Edition and my GM is far from happy with some of the changes, the biggest one being Magic and Divine Intervention now working exactly the same way with difference in name only. Also, the various Advantages and Disadvantages are either too cheap (in case of the Advantages) or too expensive (in case of the Disadvantages) for the further development of the character. 

 

And, yeah 4th Edition could be Powergamed quite heavily... especially when specializing in summoning magic, wow, the stories I heard xD

 

Anyway, I think sometime in a few years I'll make some sort of Franken40kSystem brutally cannibalizing the various systems for parts... not that I'm not doing that already...

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5th Edition DSA? Wow, I've been out of touch. Maybe this time they'll keep an international release in mind - I recall the only English books that got published were the core rules and two supplements before the subcontractor vanished into thin air...

 

Not that your description sounds promising. :( I'll have to investigate ...

 

And yes, I've had the same thought stuck in my head @ Franken40k :D

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Well, my GM said to the overall System "Good Ideas implemented badly"... lot of skills got dumped (like the transition from Deathwatch to Black Crusade), that annoying cost-table got boiled down, Characters are created by using EP only, no more "Creation Only" resource... it addresses a few points, but creates problems at other parts. Probably the same with DH 2nd Edition^^

 

That said, I should probably take some time to post a system I made differentiating rudimentary between weapon length, allowing someone with a spear keeping a sword-fighter and bay and stuff.

 

Overall, however, in DH a system where the various skills have set costs (determined by sorcery?) along with Talents having a lot more requirements (I.E. Blademaster requiring WS 40, Swift Attack, Parry +10 and 2 Melee Weapon Trainings or something)... I think what really annoyed me about the Aptitude-System really was often the lack of prerequisites, allowing for (already mentioned) overspecialization and some quite brutal talents potentially being available very early. Yeah, I could restrict that, but that'd sort of invalidate the point of the whole system again, no?

 

Guess I'm just not a friend of players growing in power too much too fast, sort of. But I should get back to writing House Rules and Adventures for my campaign... still needs a hell lot of work... or simply sleep considering the time here :/

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That said, I should probably take some time to post a system I made differentiating rudimentary between weapon length, allowing someone with a spear keeping a sword-fighter and bay and stuff.

 

Oh yeah - I did enjoy the Attack and Parry modifiers in DSA4. Much more elegant than in the previous 3 editions (where you still had to compare both weapons and calculate stuff). I wonder if something like this could be worked into DH ... probably a question of how much crunch people are willing to tolerate in their games.  :lol:

 

I think what really annoyed me about the Aptitude-System really was often the lack of prerequisites, allowing for (already mentioned) overspecialization and some quite brutal talents potentially being available very early. Yeah, I could restrict that, but that'd sort of invalidate the point of the whole system again, no?

Guess I'm just not a friend of players growing in power too much too fast, sort of.

 

I dunno if it'd invalidate the point - I think it would depend on just how you restrict it. In my opinion, the point of the Aptitude system is not to make every Talent or Skill available immediately, but to make it available, period. Which is also why I happen to be fine with Talent Trees, as long as they don't grow too convoluted.

 

Alternatively, it could simply be a matter of pricing, in that higher tier abilities are considerably more costly, whilst the XP your players get increase gradually the more dangerous/important the stuff is they pull off. This might have the effect that players who start it slow might get an ordinary amount of low-tier Skills and Talents early on, and take the higher costed stuff later when they receive more XP - whilst on the other hand there is always the option to get that one Talent you think you absolutely need for your character right away, if you're willing to save up enough XP ... thus missing out on other potentially useful stuff.

 

As mentioned earlier, I believe that if you have players who are fine with overspecialising, then that's a problem of the player - and they will always find ways to minmax; the system could merely attempt to govern how much ... but it'd do so to the chagrin of every other player who might like a more balanced approach, but whose character concept would be invalidated or sabotaged by stricter rules.

 

Another idea entirely for more well-rounded characters would be to "split" XP into different categories, so that players may only invest a portion of the XP they gain into combat Talents, being forced to buy at least some social and/or knowledge stuff. It could be justified for just about any Career/Role.

 

 

Oh, and: good luck, or good night.  :P

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A quick note about psychic powers in DH2: while the system overall looks similar to the OW power rules, they massively changed the way psychic tests work in the last beta update. Basically, you choose the effective Psy Rating of each power when you cast it. A lower effective PR gives you a greater bonus on the Focus test (+10 per point under your own Psy Rating) but weakens the effects of the power. There is no Fettered power level, so there is no way to manifest powers without any chance of Psychic phenomena.

IMO, this is a massive improvement over both the original DH psychic system and the OW system. The out-of-control scaling of psychic powers (Force Barrage, that means you) has been brought in check, and the variable PR setting gives players meaningful choices when manifesting their powers. I have some disagreements with the selection of available powers: there is no Mind Probe-like in-depth mind reading power, and some of the Divination powers have very strange in-combat effects (though there is a detailed sidebar explaining how to use them narratively). The psychic disciplines in general are too combat focused in general, and I'll probably houserule in a new "utility" power for each discipline. Overall, I really like the new system and will definitely be using it in my campaign.

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That sounds quite promising... in fact, the more I think about it, the more I like it.

 

Simple, elegant, effective. 

 

A lack of "utility-type" powers is regrettable, especially due to my interpretation of psykers being the best game-changer - the right power at the right time can be the difference between life and death, but should you totally botch it... uhm, yeah, life and death. 

 

Then again, the new system might make it quite easy converting the powers from RT/DW/BC/OW in certain cases... simply replace "Degrees of success needed for effect X" by "effective psy-rating used", although that'd need a few adjustments depending on the actual power... maybe a conversion of 1 DoS = 2 EPR (Effective Psy-Rating) is better... increasing the difficulty of Focus Power Tests when employing higher Psy-Ratings (from... 6 or 7 upwards?) might also be necessary.

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The DH2 system is probably an improvement, but in my opinion it makes the same core mistake of all the WH40KRP psychic power systems: treating powers like D&D magic spells. Rather than narrowly-focused powers, I would prefer broad categories of powers that can be 'sculpted' by the psyker for various effects, with the overall power level determined by the Psi Rating of the psyker. Hence, a 'Telepathy' category power could be used to send psychic messages over short distances at Psi Rating 1, or to dominate a mob of people at Psi Rating 5. 

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The DH2 system is probably an improvement, but in my opinion it makes the same core mistake of all the WH40KRP psychic power systems: treating powers like D&D magic spells.

To be fair, that's how powers have always been treated in terms of game mechanics for all of GWs IPs.

But oh man, I can't express the depth of my agreement. I wish some clever soul out there would come up with a completely new system.

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hmm... maybe a system, where you get alloted a pool of points according to your psy-rating which you can then use to increase certain aspects? Like "Range, Mind Control, Information-Extracting, Number of Targets" for Telepathy, or "Lifting Power, Precision, Force, Range, Target-Count" for Telekinesis, with increasing Psy-Rating first leading to the ability to manifest more aspects of the power at the same time (or increase power of one aspect) while later allowing for interesting combinations...

 

WOuld certainly be interesting

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Something like this must already exist somewhere. There's sooo many games out there ...

Perhaps GURPS? Or one of those superhero P&Ps where you can build your own powers?

 

I tried to build something (very) remotely comparable for a German Star Wars game once (probably only interesting if you can read German tho :P) ... it basically used the three "common" themes of Sense, Control and Manipulate as categories, and then branched out into a number of disciplines, which each had sub-abilities to unlock. Which you could put further points into for some bonus. However, to get really good at something specific, your character needed to know at least the basics of a connected discipline. For example, you couldn't reach the Advanced level of "Healing" without at least Basic knowledge of "Force Sight". In this way, every single ability was connected to one of the disciplines, promoting a somewhat broader skillset even for characters that would specialise in something.

 

It was still prefabricated, but the system at least felt like everything was connected/related to everything else rather than just a random assortment of spells. And you had the option of basically "inventing" new abilities by combining two disciplines as a new Force Secret - with approval of the GM, of course.

 

Maybe something like that would at least be a good starting point - unless someone manages to come up with a good idea on how to construct and properly balance a sort of toolkit that lets you go wild? I'm sure this would be the best possible solution simply for the creativity it allows the player to exert, and how it reflects the inner workings of the Warp, but it sure would be a tough job to get it right!

Edited by Lynata
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Gonna give it a read once I've got a bit more time... pretty busy lately with work, studying and various presentations :/

 

I do know that BESM: 3rd Edition has a pretty interesting concept of building abilities, weapons, etc, allowing you to build... basically anything... comes at the price of the system being slightly bloated. 

 

Hmm, I should totally check out that World of Darkness: Mage system or something... if I remember, it has a very interesting concept of magic itself and the rulesystem might work as an inspiration... gonna see if that is of some use, but we should probably move our discussion on the Powers of the Warp and how they can be better expressed in rules to another thread, should we continue these thoughts :)

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Something like this must already exist somewhere. There's sooo many games out there ...

Perhaps GURPS? Or one of those superhero P&Ps where you can build your own powers?

 

Ars Magica and Dresden Files, I think. GURPS doesn't really do on-the-fly magic, at least not as far as I'm aware.

 

I actually played Ars a long, long time ago and still have a couple of the books. But if I ever try to tackle this, it won't be any time soon.

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WoD's Mage line has my favorite magic system of any RPG system. There are 10 Arcana representing different areas of magical influence (Fate, Force, Matter, Spirit, etc.) that you advance separately, and as you do so your power over that arcana grows. You also have a stat called Gnosis that represents your overall magical power (like Psy Rating in 40k). When you want to casst a spell, you literally just come up with whatever you want the spell to do (within the limits of your power -- a starting mage won't be stopping time or summoning armies of the dead) and roll dice to see how well it works. There are a number of example effects to choose from, but if you think up a cool new use for your power you can work with the GM to figure out the in-game effects.

 

That said, there would be some problems with porting such a free-form system to a crunch-heavy game like DH. A central theme in Mage is hubris, and some high-level effects really blur the line between mortal and god. A person with a single dot in Life magic can detect other life forms or interpret an animal's feeling, while a five-dot master of Life can transform their enemies into insects or create mythological creatures like dragons or manticores. A master of Fate can call down Biblical plagues of locusts, a master of Space can create their own (permanent) pocket dimensions, and a master of Matter can -- 100% literally -- turn military helicopters to Swiss cheese. DH Psykers are already crazy enough at high levels; Mage is a good starting point for designing a new power system, but directly copying it will not work in a DH setting.

 

EDIT: Here are the utility powers I'm currently considering for my game:

  • Biomancy -- Alter the bodies of you and your fellow Acolytes to survive in extreme heat/cold, breathe underwater, withstand pressure from vacuum or deep ocean, etc.
  • Divination -- This is the most utility-focused discipline in the game, so it doesn't need any help in this department.
  • Pyromancy -- Use "precision pyromancy" as a melta-cutter, letting you cut through armored bulkheads... with your MIND!
  • Telekinesis -- A super-strength version of Telekinesis that lets you lift very heavy loads, say 100kg per PR (the standard version is only 2kg per PR). Would only function on immobile objects and take an extended amount of time for the sake of balance.
  • Telepathy -- Mind Probe ability that lets you conduct in-depth interrogations of a target, or the ability to plant a suggestion in a target's subconscious that will be triggered later (for example: "The next time you see the governor, shoot him").
Edited by Covered in Weasels

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That would be nWoD then.

Mage the Ascencion (oWoD) had only 9 spheres, and a score called Arete (not exactly 'Enlightenment', but close enough), that you actually rolled. Very strong magic system, but could at times be so vaguely defined that we spent more times figuring out what was meant than actually playing.

 

Shadowrun* had spells, but also had guidelines for designing new spells. Maybe something could be adopted from there?

 

My favorite though, has to be Ars Magica, which I play more than the 40k systems put together.

With spells and spontaneous magic, even limitations on what magic can and cannot do, it's probably the strongest magic system currently in print. Certainly the best I have ever seen. It can take a bit of getting used to though.

 

 

* 2nd and 3rd editions anyway. I never got around to reading the newer ones.

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Meanwhile, I just finished porting all 50 Minor Powers - now called Potestas Minoris ("powers minor"... I hope think) - to our warp powers sub-system. Now to the fun of creating a Phenomena table for the minors Discipline.

 

... The hours of my life I'll never get back :P

 

+++

 

For the curious, we've turned all Warp-fuelled powers into Disciplines, regardless of whether they're sorcerous or psychic, miraculous or ruinous.

 

Disciplines basically work the same way Skills do, except they start with a base value equal to their governing Characteristic, and each Rank - called Mastery - adds a +10 modifier. In other words: they start off a bit better than Skills, that's essentially the difference.

 

Manifestation rolls - using a power - works like Skill rolls too, except a psyker (or whatever) has the option to add their Mastery to the roll. And the more bad-ass powers tend to come with an inherent penalty to the roll (basically, if it's DH RAW Threshold is 10+, there's probably a penalty).

 

When psykers aren't adding their mastery, the only way to get a Phenomena roll, is to fail the Manifestation roll. If they are adding their Mastery, then Phenomena (and Perils) may happen regardless of Manifestation success or failure.

Basically, roll over Manifestation DoF on the ones die to avoid Phenomena. Add Mastery, if you add Mastery.

 

In addition to general re-jiggering of the Phenomena tables, we've upped the value you need to fail by, to cause Perils. Basically, you now can't Peril unless you added Mastery to the Manifestation roll.

It's contrary to the fluff that sucky psykers are less likely to cause major calamities, but we couldn't come up with anything better that was as playable at the actual table. To off-set that slightly, we've designed Phenomena so that low rolls tend to be worse than moderately high ones.

 

We're also designing the powers to have different values depending on whether you're playing abstract or with minis & terrain. And IMO that really is the way to go. A flashbang shouldn't use anything larger than the pie plate on the tabletop. Which translates to 3 meters in abstract play, which would be laughable.

 

+++

 

That last bit is probably the ultimate reason our group is bothering trying to come up with something that suits us better than RAW. If only the actual professionals hadn't completely disregarded tabletop play, and in the process ruined it in a million ways, I don't think I could have been talked into all this work.

 

I kind of wish FFG would give people like us a 50% refund for making us do half the job we paid them to do for us. I'd be a whole lot kindlier disposed towards them if they did. But really, I'd just appreciate if they didn't piss all over the tabletop crowd.

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The only reason I took Perform (Singer) as a Sister back then was because I thought it fits to the character. I could've skipped it entirely, just like I'd take it again in a Freeform system. So in my opinion this particular problem rests with the player, not the system.

 

I see what you did there...

 

sisteract.jpg?w=750&h=422

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On the topic of free-form magic systems, Strands of Fate introduced a mechanic (or rather a sub-sytem) called Control.

 

You would choose an element to control, and for 40K this would likely be the various psychic disciplines. Then there are rules for "building" the effects of powers within this area, both on-the-fly and with options for "rotes", which are basically pre-defined sets for which you use repeatedly (fireball), and for which you can gain a bonus to use.

 

I never used this in real-play, but I really liked what I read.

 

I found a Dark Heresy to Strands of Fate conversion on-line once, which mentioned the way to handle the various powers. Good stuff :)

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Now that 2nd ed DH is out what's the consensus? I have several DH1 books that I'd hate to go to waste and would still like to use them. I probably won't be able to buy DH2 for a couple of months. Now that my kid is a bit older I want to introduce him to DH. He knows about 40k thanks to the table top game and video games. I guess I'll just stick to DH1 and later see if it's worth getting later. Still I'd like to know what you all think.

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You can still use the material and fluff from your splat books. But DH2 doesn't have ranks or classes anymore. Skills and talents have been combined or gotten rid of as well and psychic powers are in line with OW and BC.

 

It's just a lot smoother. Currently I'm using DH2 and running the Haarlock Trilogy, doesn't seem to be much issue so far. If you want to get down to the core of it you'd be spending some time reworking npc stats to be in line with DH2's system. But DH2 is smoother running that DH1 ever could hope of being.

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It's basically the same system for skills/characteristics. Aside from the odd skill, there's literally nothing preventing you from using DH1 materials in DH2 and vice versa.

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If you want to get down to the core of it you'd be spending some time reworking npc stats to be in line with DH2's system.

By that do you mean lowering them or raising them?

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