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  1. #1
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    Do you think that minor, major greater and true bloodlines are enough? Would'nt the tainted derivation be a reasonable addition?

    Why is it excluded?
    my purpose is now to lead you into the Pallace where you shall have a clear and delightful view of all those various objects, and scattered excellencies, that lye up and down upon the face of creation, which are only seen by those that go down into the Seas, and by no other....

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    It isn't, really. The equivalent of 2e "tainted bloodlines" in 3e are bloodlines so low that they don't provide any blood abilities; you can consider a bloodline of 9 or lower to be "tainted" in general. Beyond that, the rules as they are does not support this as a separate category.
    Jan E. Juvstad.

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    Site Moderator Ariadne's Avatar
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    I don't cry about removing the tainted bloodline. Most rolled anew, if they got one...
    May Khirdai always bless your sword and his lightning struck your enemies!

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    Site Moderator geeman's Avatar
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    At 07:42 PM 2/5/2003 +0100, Mark_Aurel wrote:

    > It isn`t, really. The equivalent of 2e "tainted bloodlines" in 3e are
    > bloodlines so low that they don`t provide any blood abilities; you can
    > consider a bloodline of 9 or lower to be "tainted" in general. Beyond
    > that, the rules as they are does not support this as a separate category.

    I`ll write up a more thorough analysis in the next couple of days, but this
    is one aspect of the bloodline system that I don`t much like. Generally, I
    just don`t think casting bloodline into the format of an ability score is
    the way to go. I understand that it is a legacy of Doom`s original
    conversion, but I`ve never thought it really made much sense. Aside from
    it being a dramatic and largely unnecessary change from the original system
    one loses several things by putting the concept into the ability score
    mechanic, tainted bloodlines being just one of those things. Given that a
    bloodline of any sort would allow access to true magic this is a pretty
    significant difference between the original idea of a bloodline and how it
    is being portrayed in this rules set. I`ve had many wizards who had only a
    tainted bloodline since that`s the minimum required. Using this conversion
    those characters would have to be more much "significantly blooded" than
    was the original intention or is really necessary.

    Gary

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  5. #5
    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    Actually Gary they wouldn't. Anyone can be blooded, the distinction is in what they gain. As Mark pointed out the 2nd ed "tainted" essentially gave very little bonus. There are ECLs for major and higher bloodlines, the minor bloodline still gives access to minor blood abilities, the blood score can still increase and grant access to more (only limit is they must be minor) - anyone with a bloodline (of any strength) can be a wizard. It just seems to be kind of useless to mark a distinction between a minor and tainted bloodline. Marraiges will be arranged on strength (no one is going to arrange to marry into a lower {minor or weak minor (aka tainted)} bloodline without risk of diluting the line).

    By using an additional ability score for this mechanic it helps to update the old 10% experience point bonus that non-blooded characters received. They can simply choose to apply their best scores into abilities that fit their adventuring class. Ability scores are more of a permanent benefit than an experience point award.

    So if a player wishes to run a wizard (and not be an elf or half elf) he rolls (or assigns points) to 7 ability scores. He can then arrange them where he wishes in order to create the type of character he desires. If he wishes to be blooded, then he keeps his blood ability score and can thus be a wizard - essentially he has chosen a minor scion template with a lower blood score, otherwise he is non-blooded and disgards his lowest score.
    Duane Eggert

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    Ariadne wrote:

    >This post was generated by the Birthright.net message forum.
    > You can view the entire thread at: http://www.birthright.net/read.php?TID=1266
    >
    > Ariadne wrote:
    > I don`t cry about removing the tainted bloodline. Most rolled anew, if they got one...
    >
    Is there a sense in rolling at all, if you do not keep what you roll?
    Then better use the point-buy variant if you cheat yourself in rolling
    until you get something you want.
    bye
    Michael Romes

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    Certainly the flexability is nice. Both systems have benefits but most people, most of the time want to make their own character. In the game I'm running I've long wondered whether the 32-point buy system was to much. Since I run the low magic, low powered campaign world 32-points seems appropriate to counter the extreme lack of magic.

    Either way you make your characters, its all good, as long as its fun.

    Mike Spehar

  8. #8
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    Originally posted by geeman


    At 07:42 PM 2/5/2003 +0100, Mark_Aurel wrote:

    > It isn`t, really. The equivalent of 2e "tainted bloodlines" in 3e are
    > bloodlines so low that they don`t provide any blood abilities; you can
    > consider a bloodline of 9 or lower to be "tainted" in general. Beyond
    > that, the rules as they are does not support this as a separate category.

    I`ll write up a more thorough analysis in the next couple of days, but this
    is one aspect of the bloodline system that I don`t much like. Generally, I
    just don`t think casting bloodline into the format of an ability score is
    the way to go. I understand that it is a legacy of Doom`s original
    conversion, but I`ve never thought it really made much sense. Aside from
    it being a dramatic and largely unnecessary change from the original system
    one loses several things by putting the concept into the ability score
    mechanic, tainted bloodlines being just one of those things. Given that a
    bloodline of any sort would allow access to true magic this is a pretty
    significant difference between the original idea of a bloodline and how it
    is being portrayed in this rules set. I`ve had many wizards who had only a
    tainted bloodline since that`s the minimum required. Using this conversion
    those characters would have to be more much "significantly blooded" than
    was the original intention or is really necessary.

    Gary

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    Actually, I have to disagree about the format conversion. The d20 system is all about one rule -- roll the d20 and remember that higher is better. By adapting the old bloodline system into a stat, Doom brought it into line with that rule. Yes, the old system could have been kept, but then you run into conformity issues.

    Another important aspect of 3rd ed DnD that you might have noticed is "choices." By converting the system into a stat, the option of choosing your own powers has been provided and characters of equal strengths are now 'equal' in powers. The randomness of extreme rolling has been removed to provide for more balanced scions. This doen't mean that you have to pick your powers, the random tables are there. You have the option to use them.

    You obviously have access to the old system, so you have the choice to use that instead of the new one. But remember that BR has been off the market for years and that some of us late comers (and all those potential players out there) don't necessarily have the old stuff. Since a system had to be provided for us in the conversion, shouldn't that system be based on the same concepts of the d20 system?
    May the blessings of divine Haelyn be always at hand for you, friend.

  9. #9
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    Okay, the current bloodline system is terrible. Just like democracy. Just like Churchill said. It's terrible, but there isn't really any evils around that are lesser. I'm going to go through the reasons, in brief:

    -Mechanical compatibility; the ability mechanic in 3e is used for several things in 3e - setting DCs is a pretty important thing. If bloodline wasn't there, this'd default to charisma. Why should bards and paladins have better bloodline abilities than members of other classes? The other alternative would be flat DCs, which doesn't really exist in 3e.
    -Balance. 3e balances characters, level by level. 2e "balanced" things by using a system where you'd get random abilities, and "balance" the powerful ones by making them rare. That wouldn't really work in 3e.
    -Character design decisions. 3e gives you much more control over character design than 2e did - when there were subsystems for new abilities in 2e, such as blood abilities, red steel abilities, wild talents, or whatever, they were random and "balanced" by randomness. Class abilities were rarely customizable to the extent they are in 3e (particularly through feats); 3e is still a class-based system, of course, but it keeps simplicity while allowing a greater level of choice.

    That's the Player Character part. Bloodlines create a further headache, of course, because it's a mechanic that interfaces with two different aspects of the world - both player characters and the domain rules.

    There's numerous examples of alternate ways to do bloodlines and blood abilities; some of the more immediate ways are:
    -Keep the old system and screw balance. Doesn't work, because it goes contrary to 3e balance and mechanics.
    -Keep the old system, but change the balance a bit - mix the ability of picking bloodline strength (tainted-great) with a random roll of dice to generate starting bloodline value. Doesn't work either, because it introduces yet another single roll that can screw your character, or make him overpowered.
    -Use blood abilities as feats or templates, perhaps with salient divine abilities in mind. Doesn't work either - doesn't interface with the domain rules properly.
    -Use the bloodline ability score as is, use a feat/template system ala salient divine abilities, remove RP from the system altogether, use bloodline ability modifier as a modifier to all domain-related rolls instead. Doesn't work - sacrifices what is a true sacred cow for the BR domain system, the RP pool.
    -Use random generation in a manner similar to Omega World (recent issue of Polyhedron); this would be more balanced than the old random generation, but would still leave the issues of domain interaction, and player choice in designing characters (easy enough to pick, though).

    I'm fairly eager to see criticism of the system as is - but I also think presenting an alternative is good, and especially keeping in mind the design goals of this part:

    -Keep the bloodline system interactive with domains;
    -Balance in 3e fashion;
    -Character choice in 3e fashion;
    -Keep 3e rules for things like DCs in mind;
    -Don't give something for nothing (i.e. don't create another random value that is balanced only against itself - aka the old bloodline strength score);
    -Keep the sacred cows around and don't change _too_ much (i.e. the blood abilities themselves, RP)

    Since the conception of the bloodline ability score system, I've also toyed with a lot of other systems in a theorethical fashion; some turned out to work fairly well in a 3e mechancial fashion, but they also deviate extensively from what the original system made them.

    To repeat myself, I'd be very interested to see this debate continue - especially if good alternatives that keep in mind the design goals are presented. I could present some discarded alternatives myself, if that'd help the discussion be more fruitful.
    Jan E. Juvstad.

  10. #10
    Site Moderator geeman's Avatar
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    At 03:05 PM 2/7/2003 +0100, Gavin Cetaine wrote:

    >Actually, I have to disagree about the format conversion. The d20 system
    >is all about one rule -- roll the d20 and remember that higher is
    >better. By adapting the old bloodline system into a stat, Doom brought it
    >into line with that rule. Yes, the old system could have been kept, but
    >then you run into conformity issues.

    The domain rules with the original bloodline system used a single d20 roll,
    and bloodline only rarely entered directly into that. Bloodline wasn`t an
    ability score in that system, and it doesn`t need to be now. To me making
    bloodline an ability score puts it into a 3e-like format, which might be
    easier for many people to digest, but it doesn`t really need to go that
    direction, and there are several game mechanical reasons why it shouldn`t.

    >Another important aspect of 3rd ed DnD that you might have noticed is
    >"choices." By converting the system into a stat, the option of choosing
    >your own powers has been provided and characters of equal strengths are
    >now `equal` in powers. The randomness of extreme rolling has been
    >removed to provide for more balanced scions. This doen`t mean that you
    >have to pick your powers, the random tables are there. You have the
    >option to use them.

    Couldn`t one still do so without turning bloodline into an ability
    score? In fact, one of the weird things about reflecting bloodline as an
    ability score is that provisions for a random method weren`t included in
    the BR 3e document. There are dozens of methods for rolling random ability
    scores, so converting bloodline to an ability score without assuming some
    sort of die-roll method of performing character generation seems a little
    out of whack to me.

    >You obviously have access to the old system, so you have the choice to use
    >that instead of the new one. But remember that BR has been off the market
    >for years and that some of us late comers (and all those potential players
    >out there) don`t necessarily have the old stuff. Since a system had to
    >be provided for us in the conversion, shouldn`t that system be based on
    >the same concepts of the d20 system?

    So you haven`t seen the original bloodline system? There certainly were
    faults to the original bloodline system but it was pretty simple. A 3e
    version that was more in-line with the original wouldn`t be that much of a
    leap for anybody. You could, in fact, keep it with probably a lot less
    conversion than reflecting bloodline as an ability score required.

    Gary

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