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 Worst Parts About 4e?

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chaosfang
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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Fri Sep 27, 2013 6:54 pm

I understand that it's frustrating for some people, but the way I see it, both the AEDU setup and flexible attack system works to avoid the attack spam done pre-4E, where the only real optimal choice is to either super-specialize in a certain tactic (trip-a-holic), or simply abuse Full Attack.

In the system you propose -- which like I said, mimics my own classless 4E system in 2012 (originally posted in WotC's homebrew section, further improved by Bjarki) based its concept on having every weapon-based attack instead be a basic attack + one triggering ability as a free action -- the only difference between it and the current system (assuming you'll use the AED power scaling system) is that you decide which power to utilize after you hit, as opposed to which power to utilize in order to hit, essentially making all non-at-wills reliable, rendering the reliable keyword and associated game elements redundant. Given the normal restrictions on free actions as well, this setup can be detrimental to the Fighter class as well, as their in-turn actions are even more limited.

The biggest issue with this -- which is partly why I didn't feel like continuing the project, as there was no solution to it other than paring down options or throwing D&D 4E out wholesale and restarting from scratch -- is that everything that stacks with basic attacks, stacks with this, making charge-centric builds even more powerful than they already are. Especially if we're talking about a Slayer who trades off one use of his Power Strike with a free action encounter or daily power.

Regarding "tactics", you're already "dumbing down" the Fighter the same way Essentials dumbed down the Fighter, albeit not to the exact same degree: instead of planning ahead what to use and then executing your battle plan as expected, you attack first, then pick up your cardspowers and use what is most appropriate. There's no placement, short-term or even long-term planning done outside of picking what powers to get at each level, unless each power is explicitly designed to work under very specific triggers that are based on factors that aren't part of the d20 die roll, which makes it even more likely to have certain powers that are more optimal (and more spammable) than others, resulting in abilities that will likely see very little to no use.

[ You can already see this in action by taking the 13th Age Fighter and turning the flexible attacks into AED powers. I also understand that the 13th Age Rogue is also part way there with its own array of powers, so you might want to look that up too. ]

Regarding prone, the prone effect as part of Wolf's Rend, for example, is worth the encounter because the prone not only does a bit of static damage, but also gives the second attack an effective +2 to hit from combat advantage.  Simply saying that knocking an enemy prone is worth an encounter power just by the mechanical effect of either combat advantage + a -2 to hit while prone, or wasting an action (that by itself isn't even worth negating if the enemy is able to hit their target even when prone) doesn't really justify it if you ask me, and of course the ability to knock enemies prone is even less significant at higher levels, when teleport and hovering flight -- both of which don't really hamper enemies by much (since hover negates the fall-inducing effect of prone vs. flight -- become more common. If it scaled well, like how even Daze works better at higher levels due to how many attacks and combos are negated by it, then it would be worth an encounter power. Otherwise... probably not worth an encounter power.

[ Personally I feel that being able to choose what to use when I hit is more like a combo attack, as opposed to opportunistic exploits as seen in flexible attacks. Flexible attacks themselves would be unrealistic, but when you combine flexible attacks with class talents, that results in a fighter who sometimes gets to choose what combos to execute, and at other times takes advantage of openings and blunders by the enemy that, given the heat of the moment, simply chalks up to luck.

And frankly I'd prefer that randomness of the dice (as seen in the multi-attacking ranger of 13th Age), as it would make things a little more interesting than "I Twin Strike my way to victory" (as seen in the optimal, multi-attacking ranger of 4E). At least with the former you can't always expect everything to fall in your favor on the onset, while in the latter it's no different from pre-4E's Full Attacks... aside from how different encounter powers do additional effects (otherwise virtually all multi-attacking encounter powers of the ranger work exactly like Twin Strike, except they add ability modifier damage and don't scale in terms of [W] at level 21+). ]
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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Sat Sep 28, 2013 8:07 am

Chris24601 wrote:
svendj wrote:
Ah, so you'd replace the boring old BA with a choice of 3 at-will powers. I agree that would do a lot to avoid the feeling of having to spam one or two powers. OTOH, you'd have to design a bunch of powers that are all equally useful and good, otherwise you're only going to get the Twin Strike problem again (while Rangers have 12 at-will powers, none come close to Twin Strike). But that's a balance issue.
Personally, I think the Scout class handed the ranger twin-strike issue properly by turning the offhand weapon attack into its striker damage feature. For an improved ranger class I'd drop both twin-strike and hunter's quarry and replace them with a free basic attack (melee or ranged) on your turn.
Nods

One thing to remember is in principle if something seems too good? sometimes you dont nerf it, sometimes you dont remove it... sometimes you give it to everyone. *like distributing as a striker feature.

An example of this... if a certain weapon allows one to spend hit points to deal more damage and its really popular for its mechanics perhaps you want to flavor it several different ways or give it as a heroic feature *a boon (or make it an every hero move call it a risky move or over exertion)

The above connects with my thinking that healing surges need expanded to be heroic surges in keeping with there many uses and many potential uses

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One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Sat Sep 28, 2013 8:30 am

Tequila Sunrise wrote:

My two big complaints about 4e are the math holes -- really, how rushed must the release have been for them to miss that glitch? And of course the stealth errata feat taxes we got instead of actual errata.
I sometimes wonder if it was a glitch or the current team not really knowing why or not buying in to the reasons.

The characters math started at level 1 with the math having enemies a couple levels higher being close to equal then over the course of play it gradually faded at low levels you need more enemies which are viable to battle so having a couple levels advance on them allows you to have some weaker ones... by the time you reach the highest levels.. you again need access to more as you lose the ones who are higher level (you really cant over populate that area in epic). So a few of the level -4 or even -6 you might want to be more viable.


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One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Sun Sep 29, 2013 1:27 pm

chaosfang wrote:
In the system you propose -- which like I said, mimics my own classless 4E system in 2012 (originally posted in WotC's homebrew section, further improved by Bjarki) based its concept on having every weapon-based attack instead be a basic attack + one triggering ability as a free action
Except that is NOT my proposed system.

My proposed system is to have 3-4 actual at-will attacks (i.e. anything from Tide of Iron to Storm Pillar depending on the class) as the only standard action choices for most classes, these standard actions are then supplemented by 3-4 free action triggers (of either encounter or daily variety) that can be selected from after a hit (or miss depending on the power) is scored. There would also exist minor-action attack powers that buff the character's combat ability (ex. extending reach, adding a condition to each target hit, etc.) for some period of time (next turn for encounters or until the end of the encounter for dailies).

The only real difference from standard 4E to what I'm proposing is reshuffling the powers a bit so there's not a large clump of standard actions to wade through because having 8-10 choices for what to do with your standard action on your turn is one of the primary sources of option paralysis in the system. If you instead make it 3-4 choices for a minor action that will buff all your attacks for a period of time, then 3-4 choices for your standard action attack, then give them another 3-4 choices after a hit is scored for a free action buff... you've changed it from a single choice with too many options to multiple choices with a more optimal number of choices (in psychological terms) for each.

Quote :
the only difference between it and the current system (assuming you'll use the AED power scaling system) is that you decide which power to utilize after you hit, as opposed to which power to utilize in order to hit, essentially making all non-at-wills reliable, rendering the reliable keyword and associated game elements redundant.
I don't find the Reliable keyword to be sacred-cow worthy. Let it die if that's what it takes to build a better game.

Quote :
Given the normal restrictions on free actions as well, this setup can be detrimental to the Fighter class as well, as their in-turn actions are even more limited.
Which is why I said I want the classes to have regular at-will attacks (i.e. "Tide of Iron" is what I want, not the "Hammer Hands" stance). I don't know where you're getting the idea that I want the classes to only have basic attacks as standard actions, but that's flat out the opposite of what I want.

My thinking on action economy for a fighter is that during their turn they should be picking from 3 standard action at-will attack powers and then, if they hit, picking from about 3 free action encounter attack powers to buff their attack. They should also have access to 3 daily minor action stances that allow them to buff their combat abilities for the entire battle and 3 move action utility powers that help them get into position on the battlefield. For their off-turn actions they should have their mark punishment attack and a choice of 3 triggered defensive powers (ex. Shield Block) for when they come under attack.

Quote :
The biggest issue with this -- which is partly why I didn't feel like continuing the project, as there was no solution to it other than paring down options or throwing D&D 4E out wholesale and restarting from scratch -- is that everything that stacks with basic attacks, stacks with this, making charge-centric builds even more powerful than they already are. Especially if we're talking about a Slayer who trades off one use of his Power Strike with a free action encounter or daily power.
Except that my suggestion doesn't do what you seem to think it does because I'm not doing a "basic attack + free action" concept that you appear to be projecting from your project onto the ideas that I'm talking about. I'm talking about giving classes REAL at-wills like Tide of Iron, not the E-class Hammer Hands stance.

You can further solve just about every other issue just by using the right wording on the triggers... such as "when you hit with an at-will attack on your turn." That immediately rules out the ability to use the power to boost any off-turn attacks the character might be capable of (such as those granted by a warlord).

Likewise, the issue you're referring to isn't due to free action attack powers, of which there are already many. The issue is the result of the rather shoddy errata to Power Strike that made it a "no action" so it would work with the Scout's dual weapon attack which was gimped by their decision to allow only one attack boost free action per turn (what they probably should have done is just written a special version of power strike for the scout that took the free action limitation into account). If you use the written version Power Strike from HotFL/FK (where its a free action) there would be no such issues at all with any other free action attack boosters.

That said, even IF you were to keep Power Strike as a no action power, its not going to be any more unbalanced than taking the Practiced Killer feat and then combining its extra damage with the extra damage of a power strike on the same attack or adding in any number of theme based no action powers (since there's no rule for stacking as many of those as you want if they apply). A practiced killer damage boost (no action) + power strike (no action) + takedown attack (mercenary theme; no action) + dual weapon attack (free action) is already possible in the rules as they stand right now. And while that can deal potentially 2d8+1d6+12 damage and prone the target in a single action at level 1, it's also burning up three encounter resources at once to do so and leaving them with nothing but at-wills for the rest of the fight, which I don't find too terribly unbalanced.

I would also contend that if its charging builds that are causing so many problems then we should look at changing the charge mechanics themselves instead of the hundreds of powers that can interact with a charge. Here's a simple one... change it from "At the end of the move, the creature either makes a melee basic attack against the target or uses a bull rush against it" to "At the end of the move, the creature makes the following attack against the target or uses a bull rush against it." The "following attack" would be a melee attack of Strength +1 vs. AC for [1W] + Strength modifier damage (increased to [2W] at level 21) and would immediately remove every basic attack booster from charge attacks because charge is no longer a melee basic attack.

Quote :
Regarding "tactics", you're already "dumbing down" the Fighter the same way Essentials dumbed down the Fighter, albeit not to the exact same degree:
How does making an encounter attack reliable reduce the tactics required for a fight? The only thing its changing are the conditions for when a resource is expended (i.e. on a hit instead of when you make the attack) not the tactics of when it'd be a good idea to try and prone someone. If you fail to hit the target you still fail to prone them just like before, you just retain the ability to attempt it again later in the same fight which allows for more tactical decisions at later points in the same battle where previously they'd be down to just at-will spam.

Indeed, I'd actually argue the opposite is true. Reliable powers that you can count on coming into play at some point in a battle increase the likelihood of tactics being employed. If you only have a couple of encounter attacks that may or may not hit, you can't really build tactics around putting those powers into play because there's no guarantee you'll actually hit. But with a reliable power you can count on coming into play as soon as a hit is landed and the other members of the party can react as planned to that condition (ex. "once I prone the enemy, you move in and hit him while he's down").
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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Tue Oct 01, 2013 8:35 am

Chris24601 wrote:
My proposed system is to have 3-4 actual at-will attacks (i.e. anything from Tide of Iron to Storm Pillar depending on the class) as the only standard action choices for most classes, these standard actions are then supplemented by 3-4 free action triggers (of either encounter or daily variety) that can be selected from after a hit (or miss depending on the power) is scored. There would also exist minor-action attack powers that buff the character's combat ability (ex. extending reach, adding a condition to each target hit, etc.) for some period of time (next turn for encounters or until the end of the encounter for dailies).

The only real difference from standard 4E to what I'm proposing is reshuffling the powers a bit so there's not a large clump of standard actions to wade through because having 8-10 choices for what to do with your standard action on your turn is one of the primary sources of option paralysis in the system. If you instead make it 3-4 choices for a minor action that will buff all your attacks for a period of time, then 3-4 choices for your standard action attack, then give them another 3-4 choices after a hit is scored for a free action buff... you've changed it from a single choice with too many options to multiple choices with a more optimal number of choices (in psychological terms) for each.
Except you're still wading through 9-12 powers at any given time; in fact, I'd say you're adding option paralysis because not only do you have to worry about the number of powers

  • 3-4 standard action at-wills
  • 3-4 minor actions that may be either encounter or daily
  • 3-4 free
  • 5 utilities?


But now you have to decide which combos are best utilized at any given time. The very fact that you yourself stated that you're giving "multiple choices with a more optimal number of choices (in psychological terms) for each" means that now the player has more routes to pick, more choices to make per turn, which overall requires more time to process. After all, Tide of Iron may not always be the best at-will to start off with, Come and Get It may not always be the best encounter option to follow-up with, and boosting attacks might not even be the best option this round/encounter.

If the purpose of the system you're proposing is to lessen the decision time spent during one's turn, then it should actually lessen the decision time spent during one's turn.

"Buff attacks minor, buff attacks free, standard action attack" sounds almost exactly like how Essentials work, come to think of it.
Chris24601 wrote:
Which is why I said I want the classes to have regular at-will attacks (i.e. "Tide of Iron" is what I want, not the "Hammer Hands" stance). I don't know where you're getting the idea that I want the classes to only have basic attacks as standard actions, but that's flat out the opposite of what I want.
So rather than simplify options so that you only need to worry about how to improve your basic attack via stances, you prefer basic attacks + 3-4 at-wills for a total of 5-6 standard actions to worry about per round?

Personally my only real issue with Essentials is the lack of dailies and the fact that pre-Essentials heavily stacked up on basic attack boosting feats. But regarding stances, I'd pick them over attack at-wills any day.

Chris24601 wrote:
My thinking on action economy for a fighter is that during their turn they should be picking from 3 standard action at-will attack powers and then, if they hit, picking from about 3 free action encounter attack powers to buff their attack. They should also have access to 3 daily minor action stances that allow them to buff their combat abilities for the entire battle and 3 move action utility powers that help them get into position on the battlefield. For their off-turn actions they should have their mark punishment attack and a choice of 3 triggered defensive powers (ex. Shield Block) for when they come under attack.
So, during their turn the Fighter has 16 powers to shuffle around each round at the first round, including the decision of whether or not they should use their dailies this fight or not.

The problem with daily stances (which I think is why Essentials opted not to go there) is that by the time any daily is actually worth pulling out, several rounds have already passed, so either the fight's already dragging too long already, or the fight feels like it's already about to end and it wouldn't feel like it's worth pulling off that daily stance.

The very nature of dailies, combined with the very nature of the game -- wherein you can't expect the DM to conform to the rules of 3-4 fights per day -- makes the assumption on daily stances impractical at player level.

[ I'm basing this off of my observations of my players' behaviors in LFR. ]

I already covered the issue with multiple at-wills + multiple encounters earlier.
Chris24601 wrote:
You can further solve just about every other issue just by using the right wording on the triggers... such as "when you hit with an at-will attack on your turn." That immediately rules out the ability to use the power to boost any off-turn attacks the character might be capable of (such as those granted by a warlord).
Aside from the fact that basic attacks are at-wills, it's again a matter of how many choices and how many optimal choices you have at a given situation, as well as how fast you can decide which choice is optimal. I'd prefer stances that enhance basic attacks, I'd prefer only having to worry about which special effect I'd want to apply on a hit with a basic attack, as opposed to having to choose which at-will to use and which abilities to use to enhance those at-wills.

Chris24601 wrote:
If you use the written version Power Strike from HotFL/FK (where its a free action) there would be no such issues at all with any other free action attack boosters.
Except for the feats, class features, paragon paths, themes and epic destinies that boost basic attack damage that aren't free action or no action attacks, which you conveniently pointed out in the following paragraph.

Chris24601 wrote:
And while that can deal potentially 2d8+1d6+12 damage and prone the target in a single action at level 1, it's also burning up three encounter resources at once to do so and leaving them with nothing but at-wills for the rest of the fight, which I don't find too terribly unbalanced.
Mechanically it's still roughly balanced, but isn't the issue here iteration time rather than game balance? Wasn't spending less time taking your turn the whole point of your system?

Chris24601 wrote:
I would also contend that if its charging builds that are causing so many problems then we should look at changing the charge mechanics themselves instead of the hundreds of powers that can interact with a charge.
So how would powers that can be used in place of a basic attack when charging be affected by this change (including the Essentials' stance that boosts charging, granting it +3 to hit)? Yes you removed basic attack enhancements from charge attacks, but that doesn't replace the enhancements to charge attacks themselves.

Chris24601 wrote:
Reliable powers that you can count on coming into play at some point in a battle increase the likelihood of tactics being employed. If you only have a couple of encounter attacks that may or may not hit, you can't really build tactics around putting those powers into play because there's no guarantee you'll actually hit. But with a reliable power you can count on coming into play as soon as a hit is landed and the other members of the party can react as planned to that condition (ex. "once I prone the enemy, you move in and hit him while he's down").
Except CharOps has already shown that accuracy can be made negligible with the right setup -- up to 95% accuracy especially at epic tier, but even 80% accuracy is enough to build tactics around powers; Come and Get It being a power with the Weapon keyword (thus benefiting from weapon proficiency bonus) that attacks what is generally thought of as the lowest NAD is the best example, but I'm sure even less optimal powers that can have high accuracy and a significant number of benefits (hit or miss) can go in here -- and making every tactic 100% reliable might actually be detrimental to one of the core elements of the game: the element of uncertainty, the tension built from not being sure if the tactic will actually be pulled off, and the feeling of being rewarded for "playing the game smart".
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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Tue Oct 01, 2013 9:47 am

I like the division in to stances and strikes which parallels some real life elements of martial practice. It was from ToB so I am not giving that credit to essentials ;-p

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One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Tue Oct 01, 2013 1:41 pm

chaosfang wrote:
Except you're still wading through 9-12 powers at any given time; in fact, I'd say you're adding option paralysis because not only do you have to worry about the number of powers ... [clipped for space] ...But now you have to decide which combos are best utilized at any given time.

The very fact that you yourself stated that you're giving "multiple choices with a more optimal number of choices (in psychological terms) for each" means that now the player has more routes to pick, more choices to make per turn, which overall requires more time to process.

If the purpose of the system you're proposing is to lessen the decision time spent during one's turn, then it should actually lessen the decision time spent during one's turn.
Except that for most people, it actually does take less time to make multiple smaller choices than it does to make one big one. The time it takes to make choices doesn't scale linearly with the number of options. This is because what's going on at a subconscious level with choices isn't A vs. B. vs. C. Actually, your mind is making three separate comparisons of A vs. B, A vs. C, and B vs. C in order to arrive at the best choice.

If you add in a fourth choice its going to make twice as many separate comparisons (AvB, AvC, AvD, BvC, BvD, CvD) in order to reach a decision. Bump it to six choices and you're making three times as many comparisons despite only doubling your choices. By the time you get to nine choices in the same category your mind is making twelve times as many comparisons (36 vs. 3) for only three times as many options (9 vs. 3).

By comparison, if you split those nine options up into three separate decision points with three options each the total number of comparisons made is only nine (three sets of three) because they're only going to use the results of their first choice to evaluate their next choice and so forth.

Then throw in the fact that, for traditional characters, even if they don't have as many options for free, minor and move actions as they do for standard actions, they still GET those actions and will try to find something to do with them.

Quote :
"Buff attacks minor, buff attacks free, standard action attack" sounds almost exactly like how Essentials work, come to think of it.
And as I said, I believe some of Essentials' efforts to streamline the game were good ideas (making the encounter attacks into free action buffs of your standard attack for example). What WAS bad was that they greatly reduced the options available to many of the martial classes (such as your only encounter power choice being power strike).

Quote :
So rather than simplify options so that you only need to worry about how to improve your basic attack via stances, you prefer basic attacks + 3-4 at-wills for a total of 5-6 standard actions to worry about per round?
Three to four at-wills would include the basic attacks... i.e. two at-will attack powers (as normal for 4E) plus a melee and/or ranged basic attack for a total of 3-4 standard action options depending on whether the character is equipped to make ranged basic attacks or not.

Quote :
So, during their turn the Fighter has 16 powers to shuffle around each round at the first round, including the decision of whether or not they should use their dailies this fight or not.
Psychologically though its only four powers at any giving choice point because they are not deciding their standard, move, minor and free actions at the exact same moment. Their dailies would be mixed in with those same four powers per choice and so don't increase the shuffling. Further, depending on how the class is designed, all your dailies might fall under just one of those action choices (all minors for example) and so, once the decision to not use a daily is made, that entire action category can be removed from your choices during the rest of the combat.

Quote :
The problem with daily stances (which I think is why Essentials opted not to go there) is that by the time any daily is actually worth pulling out, several rounds have already passed, so either the fight's already dragging too long already, or the fight feels like it's already about to end and it wouldn't feel like it's worth pulling off that daily stance.
And my experience with my group has been that, unless they're down to their last daily, they will nearly always open with a daily during each fight in order to end the fight more quickly with a minimum of healing surge loss. Our fighter uses daily stances right now (and prefers them to one-hit dailies) and will usually activate one of his daily stances during their first turn of the first two battles of the day and then save their last for a later fight that looks like its gong to be a tough one.

Quote :
I'd prefer stances that enhance basic attacks, I'd prefer only having to worry about which special effect I'd want to apply on a hit with a basic attack, as opposed to having to choose which at-will to use and which abilities to use to enhance those at-wills.
And I prefer basic attacks to be what they were originally intended to be, inferior options to the class at-will attack powers used mainly for non-standard action attacks (i.e. opportunity attacks, warlord granted attacks, etc). The reason for this is that you can better control for what off-turn attacks will accomplish if they don't have as many other things modifying them.

Quote :
Except for the feats, class features, paragon paths, themes and epic destinies that boost basic attack damage that aren't free action or no action attacks, which you conveniently pointed out in the following paragraph.

[my quote omitted for space]

Mechanically it's still roughly balanced, but isn't the issue here iteration time rather than game balance? Wasn't spending less time taking your turn the whole point of your system?
And in the above case you would be spending less time on your turns over all. One turn would be skewed by the extra dice rolling and take a bit longer than normal. But after that, the character is down to melee basic attacks for the rest of the fight and their turns will go by very quickly.

Quote :
So how would powers that can be used in place of a basic attack when charging be affected by this change (including the Essentials' stance that boosts charging, granting it +3 to hit)? Yes you removed basic attack enhancements from charge attacks, but that doesn't replace the enhancements to charge attacks themselves.
They'd be "you can use this power in place of the charge attack" instead. My charge attack change is still pretty much a basic attack in terms of its performance, but is written out as a "charge attack" so that all of the basic attack boosters do not apply to a charge.

As to the second part, why would you NEED to remove the enhancements to charge attacks that are designed and balanced around being uses with charge attacks? That's what those options were DESIGNED to do. What they may not have been designed to do though was interact with all the basic attack boosters out there and that's what the change would do; it would only allow powers specifically designed to modify charges to modify charges.

Quote :
Except CharOps has already shown that accuracy can be made negligible with the right setup ... and making every tactic 100% reliable might actually be detrimental to one of the core elements of the game: the element of uncertainty, the tension built from not being sure if the tactic will actually be pulled off, and the feeling of being rewarded for "playing the game smart".
Unless you've got a 100% hit chance there will ALWAYS be an element of uncertainty, even with triggered powers precisely because the trigger has to go off for the power to come into play. If I miss with my at-will attack, there's no way for the encounter power that only triggers on "I hit with an at-will attack on my turn" to come into play and any tactics based on using that encounter power can't be used at that time.

What would be different though is that I'll still have a chance to try and use that tactic at a later point in the battle, whereas with a standard action encounter power any opportunity to attempt it again is lost. Only once I successfully hit my opponent can the enemies tell what it was that I was actually trying to do on those previous turns and so they won't be suckered in again).

The point though is that making sure that certain powers aren't wasted by a miss doesn't reduce the uncertainty of being able to use them on any given round because you still have to hit your target first. Frankly, by the time you DO connect the conditions of the battle may have changed in such a way that you don't want to try the same tactic at that point anyway (which is why I'm in favor of three different encounter free action attacks instead of three power strikes).
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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Tue Oct 01, 2013 3:23 pm

Chris24601 wrote:

What would be different though is that I'll still have a chance to try and use that tactic at a later point in the battle, whereas with a standard action encounter power any opportunity to attempt it again is lost. Only once I successfully hit my opponent can the enemies tell what it was that I was actually trying to do on those previous turns and so they won't be suckered in again).
The analogy of a reliable encounter power to the subtle trick,is a favorite of mine. I also often consider the roll to incorporate an aspect of did the opening really happen? If the roll fails then the character misread it... - of course I am not bothered thinking the powers grant a measure of limitee narrative control either.

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One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Wed Oct 02, 2013 7:24 am

Chris24601 wrote:

Quote :
I'd prefer stances that enhance basic attacks, I'd prefer only having to worry about which special effect I'd want to apply on a hit with a basic attack, as opposed to having to choose which at-will to use and which abilities to use to enhance those at-wills.
And I prefer basic attacks to be what they were originally intended to be, inferior options to the class at-will attack powers used mainly for non-standard action attacks (i.e. opportunity attacks, warlord granted attacks, etc). The reason for this is that you can better control for what off-turn attacks will accomplish if they don't have as many other things modifying them.
I agree, I see it as: The definition of Basic meaning simple enough to be pulled off without much preparation being different than the definition of Basic meaning fundamental to be used primariy as a basis for further enhancement. Swapping out and in effect confusing those definitions by Essentials created a tension in the design and undermined assumptions in the original design.

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One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Thu Nov 07, 2013 7:24 pm

One of the problems I remembered was how do charms effect mindless and undead creatures... Unless they directly control their body.

Though, that's probably just a bad habit old school D&D instilled in me.

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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Thu Nov 07, 2013 8:16 pm

warrior makes a shallow cut on his arm and waves that wonderful man flesh in the air just as the breeze hits right and zombies go mad instant come and get it... the range ought to be higher ;-p

Anything can be influenced... use techniques appropriate to your subject ;p

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One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Tue Nov 26, 2013 11:31 am

Not sure if this has been mentioned... But the way Essentials seemed to separate some of the 4e fanbase. I absolutely hated that, it happened like that.

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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Tue Nov 26, 2013 12:36 pm

Fans of previous editions trolling the forums.Panic 

Just no smileys sad enough to express that one.

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One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Tue Nov 26, 2013 5:16 pm

Garthanos wrote:
Fans of previous editions trolling the forums.Panic 

Just no smileys sad enough to express that one.
That was driving reason to create this forum...

So far we haven't come across any trolls.
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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Wed Nov 27, 2013 12:58 am

I started with 4th ed. I then moved onto Pathfinder. I then moved to 2nd edition. I'm now looking to move back to 4th ed. For all the flaws of 4th ed, it is the closest to the type of game I want to play and run.

Wealth by Level Chart and Magical items
In 3rd edition this was a codification of the unwritten rules for pre-3rd edition D&D. 4th ed went on to codify it even further. IMO this was a mistake and they should have provided the option for Inherent Bonuses in the DMG rather than DMG2.

Rules Bloat a.k.a The Illusion of Choice

WotC made a couple of decisions early on in the process that severely impacted 4e for the worse IMO. They decided that powers would be grouped by class (rather than power source or even not at all). This caused a lot of duplicate powers that were either identical (e.g. Precise Strike and Careful Attack from the PHB1) or so close as to not make a meaningful difference (e.g. shift after an attack vs spend a move action with the first 5 ft not provoking any AoOs).

Furthermore they decided not to have powers automatically scale (beyond at-wills). This caused a lot of powers to be duplicated yet again, just with bigger numbers this time.

These two decisions caused a lot of rules bloat in PHB1 and later supplements. Where some people look at DDi and see hundreds of powers, others look at the powers and see the same thing 3 or 4 times with minor permutations. This resulted in core classes from prior editions (Barbarian, Druid, Bard) not being supported out the gate simply due to a lack of space.

Roles on Classes Instead of Subclasses/Archetypes/Builds
Looking into Fighter, Ranger and Rogue, their powers are all quite similar (except for the Rogue who gets a slight boost). The role defining mechanic is quarantined in class features such as warrior's mark, sneak attack, hunter's quarry. IMO WotC would have been better off taking full advantage of this and offering multiple roles for the same class. So fighter's could be defenders (traditional role in OD&D through to 2nd edition) and Strikers (role for some Fighter builds in 3.5e).

Long Combats
Everyone's favourite bugbear, long combats. However after playing Pathfinder where everyone's an NPC (or horribly outclassed by the PCs or BOTH!), I'm just resigned to the fact that I'll be making my own monsters. Plus it's a fair amount of fun. By creating my own monsters I can take 4th ed monsters, look up level and role and then swap out the HP and double-check the DPR. Not that difficult anymore.

----
Not that man issues. My issues with pre-4th ed are much greater in scope.
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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Wed Nov 27, 2013 7:40 am

That's an honest assessment. Most of this can be compensate for or ignored if everyone is having fun.

Interestingly, with Essentials and post, we got some of the role changes for subclasses: a controller ranger, a striker fighter, a leader druid, a defender barbarian, a controller warlock, a striker(ish) wizard.
Granted, some of these were pretty weak and dysfunctional, but others were great fun. And even the weak ones could be fun if the flavor worked for you. I love me some hunters, sentinels, and berserkers. Felt the slayer was incredibly boring and the luster wore off the bladesinger far too fast. Never heard a good word about binders but haven't tried one or seen one in play.

Maybe not the diversity everyone was looking for, and many not full AEDU, but I think the design team was headed down an interesting path and could have done more had it not been for the negativity toward 4e from some many and the negativity toward Essentials for a portion of the 4e crowd.

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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Wed Nov 27, 2013 8:00 am

I am not a big fan of all those floating bonuses and malus (whats the english plural for that?). Player tend to forget all the stuff and I, as the DM refuse to keep track of all their stuff.
Its always like:
R:"I roll a 17 for attack"
D:"did you include my +2 Bonus to attack?"
R:"yes, but wait, doesn't M grant me another +1?"
M:"No thats already gone"
Me:"okay thats a miss, next one"
3 mins later...
C:"Wait guys, I forgot, I grant +2 bonus until end of encounter, did you use that on the attack 3 minutes ago?"
R:"No..."

I mean I like the idea of it. Teamwork and stuff. Helping others to succeed. Contributing even ifs not your turn. But its just so annoying to keep track of.
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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Wed Nov 27, 2013 8:52 am

JohnLynch wrote:
I started with 4th ed. I then moved onto Pathfinder. I then moved to 2nd edition. I'm now looking to move back to 4th ed. For all the flaws of 4th ed, it is the closest to the type of game I want to play and run.
Been looking at Pathfinders Mythic Adventures and thinking... I wish this wasnt pasted on such an imbalanced core system. I feel like I can fine tune 4e in predictable ways to achieve what I want and know I am starting from a reasonably balanced starting point and have clear ideas about what my changes might impact (not being riddled with subsystems helps). I can trust my starting point - perhaps that is a touch of system mastery talking.

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One suspects Lugh Long-hand Samildánach (a wright/carpenter, a sailor, a smith/bronze craftsman, a healer, a champion, a harpist, a poet/historian, a sorcerer, cupbearer) would agree.
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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Wed Nov 27, 2013 8:54 am

JohnLynch wrote:


Rules Bloat a.k.a The Illusion of Choice

WotC made a couple of decisions early on in the process that severely impacted 4e for the worse IMO. They decided that powers would be grouped by class (rather than power source or even not at all). This caused a lot of duplicate powers that were either identical (e.g. Precise Strike and Careful Attack from the PHB1) or so close as to not make a meaningful difference (e.g. shift after an attack vs spend a move action with the first 5 ft not provoking any AoOs).

Furthermore they decided not to have powers automatically scale (beyond at-wills). This caused a lot of powers to be duplicated yet again, just with bigger numbers this time.

These two decisions caused a lot of rules bloat in PHB1 and later supplements. Where some people look at DDi and see hundreds of powers, others look at the powers and see the same thing 3 or 4 times with minor permutations. This resulted in core classes from prior editions (Barbarian, Druid, Bard) not being supported out the gate simply due to a lack of space.

Roles on Classes Instead of Subclasses/Archetypes/Builds
Looking into Fighter, Ranger and Rogue, their powers are all quite similar (except for the Rogue who gets a slight boost). The role defining mechanic is quarantined in class features such as warrior's mark, sneak attack, hunter's quarry. IMO WotC would have been better off taking full advantage of this and offering multiple roles for the same class. So fighter's could be defenders (traditional role in OD&D through to 2nd edition) and Strikers (role for some Fighter builds in 3.5e).

These are the main reasons 4e can bug me. Poor Power Choices in early books was a lot of the problem. Also classes seemed to just really blur together. The only things that really made classes super different was their class features which was fixed with later books and classes.

You're right though. The problems with 4e are often minuscule in comparison to other editions. This gives me a topic idea.

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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Wed Nov 27, 2013 11:50 am

Felorn Gloryaxe wrote:
Not sure if this has been mentioned... But the way Essentials seemed to separate some of the 4e fanbase. I absolutely hated that, it happened like that.

Frankly, I think that WotC could have done a much better job making it clear that Essentials was not incompatible with "regular" 4e.

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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Wed Nov 27, 2013 1:28 pm

Lindeloef wrote:
I am not a big fan of all those floating bonuses and malus (whats the english plural for that?). Player tend to forget all the stuff and I, as the DM refuse to keep track of all their stuff.
Its always like:
R:"I roll a 17 for attack"
D:"did you include my +2 Bonus to attack?"
R:"yes, but wait, doesn't M grant me another +1?"
M:"No thats already gone"
Me:"okay thats a miss, next one"
3 mins later...
C:"Wait guys, I forgot, I grant +2 bonus until end of encounter, did you use that on the attack 3 minutes ago?"
R:"No..."

I mean I like the idea of it. Teamwork and stuff. Helping others to succeed. Contributing even ifs not your turn. But its just so annoying to keep track of.
That has been in D&D for years, going back to at least 2nd Edition.  A method to streamline bonus tracking would be a nice tool.  Perhaps there is a tracker sheet somewhere for DMs? scratch
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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Wed Nov 27, 2013 1:38 pm

JohnLynch wrote:
I started with 4th ed. I then moved onto Pathfinder. I then moved to 2nd edition. I'm now looking to move back to 4th ed. For all the flaws of 4th ed, it is the closest to the type of game I want to play and run.

Wealth by Level Chart and Magical items
In 3rd edition this was a codification of the unwritten rules for pre-3rd edition D&D. 4th ed went on to codify it even further. IMO this was a mistake and they should have provided the option for Inherent Bonuses in the DMG rather than DMG2.

Rules Bloat a.k.a The Illusion of Choice

WotC made a couple of decisions early on in the process that severely impacted 4e for the worse IMO. They decided that powers would be grouped by class (rather than power source or even not at all). This caused a lot of duplicate powers that were either identical (e.g. Precise Strike and Careful Attack from the PHB1) or so close as to not make a meaningful difference (e.g. shift after an attack vs spend a move action with the first 5 ft not provoking any AoOs).

Furthermore they decided not to have powers automatically scale (beyond at-wills). This caused a lot of powers to be duplicated yet again, just with bigger numbers this time.

These two decisions caused a lot of rules bloat in PHB1 and later supplements. Where some people look at DDi and see hundreds of powers, others look at the powers and see the same thing 3 or 4 times with minor permutations. This resulted in core classes from prior editions (Barbarian, Druid, Bard) not being supported out the gate simply due to a lack of space.

Roles on Classes Instead of Subclasses/Archetypes/Builds
Looking into Fighter, Ranger and Rogue, their powers are all quite similar (except for the Rogue who gets a slight boost). The role defining mechanic is quarantined in class features such as warrior's mark, sneak attack, hunter's quarry. IMO WotC would have been better off taking full advantage of this and offering multiple roles for the same class. So fighter's could be defenders (traditional role in OD&D through to 2nd edition) and Strikers (role for some Fighter builds in 3.5e).

Long Combats
Everyone's favourite bugbear, long combats. However after playing Pathfinder where everyone's an NPC (or horribly outclassed by the PCs or BOTH!), I'm just resigned to the fact that I'll be making my own monsters. Plus it's a fair amount of fun. By creating my own monsters I can take 4th ed monsters, look up level and role and then swap out the HP and double-check the DPR. Not that difficult anymore.

----
Not that man issues. My issues with pre-4th ed are much greater in scope.
Agreed, and not every system is perfect.  Although if someone came out with a 4.5 or Advanced Dungeons and Dragons 4th Edition, that just focused on these points and perhaps reorganized everything so the layout was more concise, I know I would be looking into it.
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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Sun Dec 01, 2013 3:22 pm

thanson02 wrote:
JohnLynch wrote:
I started with 4th ed. I then moved onto Pathfinder. I then moved to 2nd edition. I'm now looking to move back to 4th ed. For all the flaws of 4th ed, it is the closest to the type of game I want to play and run.

Wealth by Level Chart and Magical items
In 3rd edition this was a codification of the unwritten rules for pre-3rd edition D&D. 4th ed went on to codify it even further. IMO this was a mistake and they should have provided the option for Inherent Bonuses in the DMG rather than DMG2.

Rules Bloat a.k.a The Illusion of Choice

WotC made a couple of decisions early on in the process that severely impacted 4e for the worse IMO. They decided that powers would be grouped by class (rather than power source or even not at all). This caused a lot of duplicate powers that were either identical (e.g. Precise Strike and Careful Attack from the PHB1) or so close as to not make a meaningful difference (e.g. shift after an attack vs spend a move action with the first 5 ft not provoking any AoOs).

Furthermore they decided not to have powers automatically scale (beyond at-wills). This caused a lot of powers to be duplicated yet again, just with bigger numbers this time.

These two decisions caused a lot of rules bloat in PHB1 and later supplements. Where some people look at DDi and see hundreds of powers, others look at the powers and see the same thing 3 or 4 times with minor permutations. This resulted in core classes from prior editions (Barbarian, Druid, Bard) not being supported out the gate simply due to a lack of space.

Roles on Classes Instead of Subclasses/Archetypes/Builds
Looking into Fighter, Ranger and Rogue, their powers are all quite similar (except for the Rogue who gets a slight boost). The role defining mechanic is quarantined in class features such as warrior's mark, sneak attack, hunter's quarry. IMO WotC would have been better off taking full advantage of this and offering multiple roles for the same class. So fighter's could be defenders (traditional role in OD&D through to 2nd edition) and Strikers (role for some Fighter builds in 3.5e).

Long Combats
Everyone's favourite bugbear, long combats. However after playing Pathfinder where everyone's an NPC (or horribly outclassed by the PCs or BOTH!), I'm just resigned to the fact that I'll be making my own monsters. Plus it's a fair amount of fun. By creating my own monsters I can take 4th ed monsters, look up level and role and then swap out the HP and double-check the DPR. Not that difficult anymore.

----
Not that man issues. My issues with pre-4th ed are much greater in scope.
Agreed, and not every system is perfect.  Although if someone came out with a 4.5 or Advanced Dungeons and Dragons 4th Edition, that just focused on these points and perhaps reorganized everything so the layout was more concise, I know I would be looking into it.
Same here. IMO, that would be a near perfect system. I also would like a little bit more rule modularity. Perhaps a "real" Unearthed Arcana.

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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Tue Jan 07, 2014 1:02 pm

In my opinion, the worst part of 4e is that in order to make a character that isn't 'standard', you really need to have bought all books or have a D&D insider subscription. It really makes it hard to make the character you want to make when you haven't got access to all the books.

That being said, I do have access to a lot of the books, and I enjoy making weird and unusual characters. (Melee wizard, unarmed tempest fighter, archer fighter)
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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   Tue Jan 07, 2014 5:32 pm

itaav wrote:
In my opinion, the worst part of 4e is that in order to make a character that isn't 'standard', you really need to have bought all books or have a D&D insider subscription. It really makes it hard to make the character you want to make when you haven't got access to all the books.

That being said, I do have access to a lot of the books, and I enjoy making weird and unusual characters. (Melee wizard, unarmed tempest fighter, archer fighter)

I have to agree with this. I hate not having certain books. It makes me feel like I'm missing too much. I still really need to pick up the Essentials Heroes line.

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PostSubject: Re: Worst Parts About 4e?   

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Worst Parts About 4e?
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4ENCLAVE :: 4th Edition :: 4e General Discussion-
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