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  1. #1
    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    Should ECLs be used for the different bloodline strengths?
    Duane Eggert

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    Yes.

    According to the design diaries of various d20 developers I've read, ECL is one of the best ways to balance characters in the system. However, not ALL scions should have ECLs, even if they have a template that gives them one.

    For example, let's take a minor scion (Ftr5, Bld 18) and a major scion (Ftr5, Bld 12). According to the rules, the minor scion is an ECL 5, and the major scion is an ECL 6. The minor scion has a +4 modifier, and the major scion has a +1 modifier. The minor scion has 3 bloodline abilities, all minor, and the major scion has one minor ability.

    The minor scion is obviously the stronger of the two, due to the abilities gained and the strength of the score, and the major scion is the weaker. However, due to the rules, the major scion is considered a higher ECL.

    This is also a problem with the connection between Bloodline score (which grants the modifier and the abilities) and the templates (which grant the strength). In short, there is no connection between them.

    The Bloodline ability score could be used alone, along with an ECL modifier, in order to represent the strength of bloodlines. When you gain a certain amount of bloodline abilities to be equal to a character of a higher level, you gain an ECL adjustment. Thus, if having a Bloodline of 18 granted you enough abilities to be considered one level higher, that's when you get the level adjustment.

    Then again, gaining ECLs during play can unbalance the game. A commoner (Ftr5) and a scion (Ftr5) are travelling together and the scion commits bloodtheft and becomes a major scion (or in my alternate, an 18 Bloodline), gaining an ECL +1. Now, the scion is considered a 6th-level character, and the commoner is still a 5th-level character. How to balance this out during game play, since every mixed (commoner and scion) game may have to deal with this at some point.
    I walk this fine thread...

    Mourn

  3. #3
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    On Mon, 10 Mar 2003, Mourn wrote:
    > This is also a problem with the connection between Bloodline score
    > (which grants the modifier and the abilities) and the templates (which
    > grant the strength). In short, there is no connection between them.

    This is an effort to mimic the old duality of bloodline strength and
    score. It was kinda clunky then, and should probably be done away with,
    or at least streamlined. If we end up with bloodline as an ability score,
    then the `tainted, minor, major, great, true` should be done away with as
    categories, though they could remain as descriptors. Someone with a
    bloodline up to 10 might be described as having a `minor bloodline`, for
    instance.

    > Then again, gaining ECLs during play can unbalance the game. A
    > commoner (Ftr5) and a scion (Ftr5) are travelling together and the
    > scion commits bloodtheft and becomes a major scion (or in my
    > alternate, an 18 Bloodline), gaining an ECL +1. Now, the scion is
    > considered a 6th-level character, and the commoner is still a
    > 5th-level character. How to balance this out during game play, since
    > every mixed (commoner and scion) game may have to deal with this at
    > some point.

    And what if your score lowers, and you`re all of a sudden a lower ECL?
    Bleh.

    Blooded scion, as a template, is rather like the drow or tiefling or
    whatever template, in concept at least. The Savage Species approach might
    be useful here- a scion is considered to have a level of the `blooded
    scion` race, which gives him a d10 hp (+10 max at first level, hitting
    that old chestnut successfully), a Bloodline ability score, and the
    ability to use bloodline powers, plus a coupla skill points and whatever
    a species `level` gives you. Someone who gains a bloodline through
    whatever means would get the ability score, but no powers until they took
    a level of this racial class.

    All scions would then be ECL +1. Saving throws on their abilities would
    be, I dunno, 15 + Bld modifier, rather than 12 for minor, 15 for major,
    and 18 for great as it stands now I think.

    You could even extend the racial class out further for awnsheghlien and
    ersheghlien, requiring the appropriate blood ability to take the
    additional levels.
    --
    Communication is possible only between equals.
    Daniel McSorley- mcsorley@cis.ohio-state.edu

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  4. #4
    Site Moderator geeman's Avatar
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    At 04:05 PM 3/10/2003 -0500, Daniel McSorley wrote:

    >Blooded scion, as a template, is rather like the drow or tiefling or
    >whatever template, in concept at least. The Savage Species approach might
    >be useful here- a scion is considered to have a level of the `blooded
    >scion` race, which gives him a d10 hp (+10 max at first level, hitting
    >that old chestnut successfully), a Bloodline ability score, and the
    >ability to use bloodline powers, plus a coupla skill points and whatever
    >a species `level` gives you. Someone who gains a bloodline through
    >whatever means would get the ability score, but no powers until they took
    >a level of this racial class.

    Well, let me apologize for holding out on everyone.... I actually wrote a
    "Scion" character class up as a sort of alternate bloodline system a while
    back, but I`ve been leery about introducing the topic to the BR community
    since so many folks seem to prefer bloodline as an ability score (also
    because I haven`t had the idea fully fleshed out.) It is at least as much
    of a departure from the original 2e system as bloodline as an ability
    score, so I`ve been revealing it in dribs and drabs. Since the primary
    merit of bloodline as an ability score seems to be that it is "a more 3e
    way of doing things" I think bloodline as a character class makes even more
    sense.

    The class uses the system of bloodline points that fits into some recent
    posts I`ve been suggesting in other threads. Here it is:

    The Scion
    Blood BL Max Blood
    Level Score BAB Saves Points Abilities
    1 1-7 +0 +0 1 1
    2 8-14 +1 +0 2 1
    3 15-21 +1 +1 3 2
    4 22-28 +2 +1 4 2
    5 29-35 +2 +1 5 2
    6 36-42 +3 +2 6 3
    7 43-49 +3 +2 7 3
    8 50-56 +4 +2 8 3
    9 57-63 +4 +3 9 4
    10 64-70 +5 +3 10 4
    11 71-77 +5 +3 11 4
    12 78-84 +6 +4 12 5
    13 85-91 +6 +4 13 5
    14 92-98 +7 +4 14 5
    15 99-105 +7 +5 15 6
    16 106-112 +8 +5 16 6
    17 113-119 +8 +5 17 6
    18 120-126 +9 +6 18 7
    19 127-133 +9 +6 19 7
    20 134-140 +10 +6 20 7

    The Scion as a class has d4 hit dice. I also gave the class 2 skill points
    per level, but the only skills available to the class were a few
    specialized ones meant for blooded characters like "Sense Bloodline" which
    allowed scions to recognize other blooded characters. (Several of those
    skill descriptions I`ve sent to the list in the past, so they should be in
    the archives.)

    The primary difference between the Scion as a character class and a regular
    character class, of course, is that one does not increase one`s Scion class
    by levelling up through experience points. Only increasing bloodline score
    (by bloodtheft or good realm management) can do that.

    One could replace the bloodline points and max abilities with minor, major,
    great blood abilities fairly easily if one felt that system is too cumbersome.

    In playtesting I found it a bit hard to balance in that it`s difficult to
    compare directly with "standard" character classes for the ECL
    purposes. It`s not any less or more unbalanced, however, than bloodline as
    an ability score from what I can tell. I`ve been considering dropping all
    the class features and just going with bloodline strength and bloodline
    points--which is what I presented previously as "2e bloodlines in 3e style."

    So the choices for other ways of doing bloodline would seem to be:

    1. Make it an ability score.
    2. Make it a character class--sort of.
    3. Make it an independent system more in line with the original 2e system.

    Gary

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  5. #5
    Site Moderator Ariadne's Avatar
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    IMO a "virtuell" ECL is enough. A major scion might count as 3rd level, if he is 2nd, but he should still need the XP for 3rd...
    May Khirdai always bless your sword and his lightning struck your enemies!

  6. #6
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    On Tue, 2003-03-11 at 09:43, Gary wrote:

    At 04:05 PM 3/10/2003 -0500, Daniel McSorley wrote:

    >Blooded scion, as a template, is rather like the drow or tiefling or
    >whatever template, in concept at least. The Savage Species approach might
    >be useful here- a scion is considered to have a level of the `blooded
    >scion` race, which gives him a d10 hp (+10 max at first level, hitting
    >that old chestnut successfully), a Bloodline ability score, and the
    >ability to use bloodline powers, plus a coupla skill points and whatever
    >a species `level` gives you. Someone who gains a bloodline through
    >whatever means would get the ability score, but no powers until they took
    >a level of this racial class.

    Well, let me apologize for holding out on everyone.... I actually wrote a
    "Scion" character class up as a sort of alternate bloodline system a while
    back, but I`ve been leery about introducing the topic to the BR community
    since so many folks seem to prefer bloodline as an ability score (also
    because I haven`t had the idea fully fleshed out.) It is at least as much
    of a departure from the original 2e system as bloodline as an ability
    score, so I`ve been revealing it in dribs and drabs. Since the primary
    merit of bloodline as an ability score seems to be that it is "a more 3e
    way of doing things" I think bloodline as a character class makes even more
    sense.

    This came up in some (much) earlier posts - and I tend to agree. Blood
    abilities gained gradually over experience/time makes more sense and
    would make for more balanced character especially when comparing blooded
    to unblooded..


    The class uses the system of bloodline points that fits into some recent
    posts I`ve been suggesting in other threads. Here it is:

    The Scion
    Blood BL Max Blood
    Level Score BAB Saves Points Abilities
    1 1-7 +0 +0 1 1
    2 8-14 +1 +0 2 1
    3 15-21 +1 +1 3 2
    4 22-28 +2 +1 4 2
    5 29-35 +2 +1 5 2
    6 36-42 +3 +2 6 3
    7 43-49 +3 +2 7 3
    8 50-56 +4 +2 8 3
    9 57-63 +4 +3 9 4
    10 64-70 +5 +3 10 4
    11 71-77 +5 +3 11 4
    12 78-84 +6 +4 12 5
    13 85-91 +6 +4 13 5
    14 92-98 +7 +4 14 5
    15 99-105 +7 +5 15 6
    16 106-112 +8 +5 16 6
    17 113-119 +8 +5 17 6
    18 120-126 +9 +6 18 7
    19 127-133 +9 +6 19 7
    20 134-140 +10 +6 20 7

    The Scion as a class has d4 hit dice. I also gave the class 2 skill points
    per level, but the only skills available to the class were a few
    specialized ones meant for blooded characters like "Sense Bloodline" which
    allowed scions to recognize other blooded characters. (Several of those
    skill descriptions I`ve sent to the list in the past, so they should be in
    the archives.)

    Why only d4 hit dice? A d4 hit dice represents poor combat abilities.
    I`d argue that at least human standard (d6) would be applicable. And
    most scions of noble houses should be better fed and better trained -
    (even if not trained as warriors) - so perhaps even d8.


    The primary difference between the Scion as a character class and a regular
    character class, of course, is that one does not increase one`s Scion class
    by levelling up through experience points. Only increasing bloodline score
    (by bloodtheft or good realm management) can do that.

    But why not? (use experience) What if a character has a potential to
    become a great scion? i.e. Forget generating all the bloodline points
    first up, and generate them at each level of experience. Say a d6 for
    minor bloodlines, d8 for major and d10 for great. Or work toward a
    predetermined maximum value (which can change due to domain actions,
    bloodtheft etc) - such that a Scion would have a score like 14/25.
    Regents use the raw (or maximum) power, while the amount of the raw
    bloodline that the Scion can focus (to use blood abilities) depends on
    how much experience they`d had doing it.


    One could replace the bloodline points and max abilities with minor, major,
    great blood abilities fairly easily if one felt that system is too cumbersome.

    In playtesting I found it a bit hard to balance in that it`s difficult to
    compare directly with "standard" character classes for the ECL
    purposes. It`s not any less or more unbalanced, however, than bloodline as
    an ability score from what I can tell. I`ve been considering dropping all
    the class features and just going with bloodline strength and bloodline
    points--which is what I presented previously as "2e bloodlines in 3e style."

    Yes, the blood abilities are hardly balanced with respect to each other.
    However, you could work out a way of assigning points to each blood
    ability rather like the old psionics and allowing a Scion to have a
    non-mnemonic based variety of powers (defined by bloodline derivation,
    and restricted by the Scions bloodline points). Sort of a Scionicist,
    hee hee. The points could be drawn against the Scions (focused)
    bloodline points rather than their potential maximum.


    So the choices for other ways of doing bloodline would seem to be:

    1. Make it an ability score.
    2. Make it a character class--sort of.
    3. Make it an independent system more in line with the original 2e system.

    Gary

    or 4. Something else

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  7. #7
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    >3. Make it an independent system more in line with the original 2e system.

    I strongly favor this approach.

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  8. #8
    Site Moderator geeman's Avatar
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    At 12:18 PM 3/11/2003 +1100, Peter Lubke wrote:

    >This came up in some (much) earlier posts - and I tend to agree. Blood
    >abilities gained gradually over experience/time makes more sense and would
    >make for more balanced character especially when comparing blooded to
    >unblooded.

    I hadn`t really thought of it in those terms, but I guess you could use
    this kind of thing to reflect a character gaining his bloodline and blood
    abilities gradually by doling out their bloodline strength points at some
    sort of regular rate.

    >>The Scion as a class has d4 hit dice.
    >
    >Why only d4 hit dice? A d4 hit dice represents poor combat abilities. I`d
    >argue that at least human standard (d6) would be applicable. And most
    >scions of noble houses should be better fed and better trained - (even if
    >not trained as warriors) - so perhaps even d8.

    Normally d4 represents poor combat abilities, but in this case d4 hit dice
    because they add up over time. The idea was that the levels in this Scion
    character class would be the direct, 3e interpretation of a similarly
    powered scion in the original 2e bloodline system. A blooded PC would then
    be by default a multi-classed character. Scion levels don`t count for the
    purpose of multi-classing XP penalties (which I generally don`t care for
    anyway.) All the bloodline as a character class features are then
    coincident with other traditional character classes, so bloodline as a
    character class adds hit points on top of already existing HD from the
    regular character class. A scion with good combat abilities would take
    fighter levels (or ranger, paladin, whatever) in addition to his bloodline.

    >>The primary difference between the Scion as a character class and a
    >>regular character class, of course, is that one does not increase one`s
    >>Scion class by levelling up through experience points. Only increasing
    >>bloodline score (by bloodtheft or good realm management) can do that.
    >
    >But why not? (use experience) What if a character has a potential to
    >become a great scion? i.e. Forget generating all the bloodline points
    >first up, and generate them at each level of experience. Say a d6 for
    >minor bloodlines, d8 for major and d10 for great. Or work toward a
    >predetermined maximum value (which can change due to domain actions,
    >bloodtheft etc) - such that a Scion would have a score like 14/25.
    >Regents use the raw (or maximum) power, while the amount of the raw
    >bloodline that the Scion can focus (to use blood abilities) depends on
    >how much experience they`d had doing it.

    That`s interesting. You mean make the bloodline a sort of scaled
    template? You could go that way, I guess. It`s much different from the
    original BR system, though, which is what I was trying to do there.

    > In playtesting I found it a bit hard to balance in that it`s difficult to
    > compare directly with "standard" character classes for the ECL
    > purposes. It`s not any less or more unbalanced, however, than
    > bloodline as
    > an ability score from what I can tell. I`ve been considering
    > dropping all
    > the class features and just going with bloodline strength and bloodline
    > points--which is what I presented previously as "2e bloodlines in 3e
    > style."
    >
    >Yes, the blood abilities are hardly balanced with respect to each other.
    >However, you could work out a way of assigning points to each blood
    >ability rather like the old psionics and allowing a Scion to have a
    >non-mnemonic based variety of powers (defined by bloodline derivation,
    >and restricted by the Scions bloodline points). Sort of a Scionicist,
    >hee hee. The points could be drawn against the Scions (focused)
    >bloodline points rather than their potential maximum.

    I think that`s basically the direction bloodline points takes the
    system. I`ve written up a few of those blood ability descriptions in the
    bloodline point style. Here`s another one.

    Regeneration (An, Az, Re)
    You are able to heal more quickly than would a normal person.
    As a minor(1) ability you are completely healed after one night of rest
    no matter how much damage you suffer the previous day. For additional BPs
    you can advance the Regeneration power per the table below. By spending an
    additional +1 BP you can regenerate lost limbs or recover from physical
    injury causing paralysis, blindness or deafness.

    BP Regeneration Limb Regeneration
    Cost Rate (+1 BP)
    2 1hp/10 minutes 91-100 (1d10+90) days
    3 1hp/minute 8-10 (1d3+7) days
    4 1hp/round 1 night of rest
    5 2hp/round 2-4 hours
    6 3hp/round 41-60 minutes
    7 4hp/round 8-10 minutes
    8 5hp/round 2-5 minutes

    For example, a scion with Regeneration as a major(5) ability will heal 2
    hit points per round. By dedicating one of those BP to the ability to
    regenerate lost limbs, however, that same major(5) ability would regenerate
    1hp/round and regrow lost limbs after 1 night of rest.
    By spending 2BP on this ability a scion will return from the dead when
    reduced below 0 hit points (or -10 if that optional rule is in
    effect.) Note that an act of bloodtheft performed on a scion destroys his
    bloodline and blood abilities, removing his bloodline and ability to return
    from the dead.

    Gary

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  9. #9
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    daniel mcsorley wrote:

    >On Mon, 10 Mar 2003, Mourn wrote:
    >
    >>This is also a problem with the connection between Bloodline score
    >>(which grants the modifier and the abilities) and the templates (which
    >>grant the strength). In short, there is no connection between them.
    >>
    >
    >This is an effort to mimic the old duality of bloodline strength and
    >score. It was kinda clunky then, and should probably be done away with,
    >or at least streamlined. If we end up with bloodline as an ability score,
    >then the `tainted, minor, major, great, true` should be done away with as
    >categories, though they could remain as descriptors. Someone with a
    >bloodline up to 10 might be described as having a `minor bloodline`, for
    >instance.
    >
    The descriptors should definitely stay: While very few people in Cerilia
    will actually know the bloodline points of Prince Avan, nearly all will
    know that he has e.g. a "great" bloodline. It is so common knowledge for
    blooded scions that familys e.g. would not let the daughter of a great
    line marry into a minor (a commoner is totally out of question!) because
    the childrens blood would be diluted - and that all in addition to the
    normal considerations of aristrocracy.
    bye
    Michael Romes

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    Technically, what you are describing here is Fast Healing, not regeneration.
    I guess you should try to name a blood ability Regeneration if it does not
    confirm to what regeneration is in 3E.

    /Carl


    ----- Original Message -----
    From: "Gary" <geeman@SOFTHOME.NET>
    >
    > Regeneration (An, Az, Re)
    > You are able to heal more quickly than would a normal person.
    > As a minor(1) ability you are completely healed after one night of rest
    > no matter how much damage you suffer the previous day. For additional BPs
    > you can advance the Regeneration power per the table below. By spending an
    > additional +1 BP you can regenerate lost limbs or recover from physical
    > injury causing paralysis, blindness or deafness.
    >
    > BP Regeneration Limb Regeneration
    > Cost Rate (+1 BP)
    > 2 1hp/10 minutes 91-100 (1d10+90) days
    > 3 1hp/minute 8-10 (1d3+7) days
    > 4 1hp/round 1 night of rest
    > 5 2hp/round 2-4 hours
    > 6 3hp/round 41-60 minutes
    > 7 4hp/round 8-10 minutes
    > 8 5hp/round 2-5 minutes
    >
    > For example, a scion with Regeneration as a major(5) ability will heal
    2
    > hit points per round. By dedicating one of those BP to the ability to
    > regenerate lost limbs, however, that same major(5) ability would
    regenerate
    > 1hp/round and regrow lost limbs after 1 night of rest.
    > By spending 2BP on this ability a scion will return from the dead when
    > reduced below 0 hit points (or -10 if that optional rule is in
    > effect.) Note that an act of bloodtheft performed on a scion destroys his
    > bloodline and blood abilities, removing his bloodline and ability to
    return
    > from the dead.
    >
    > Gary
    >
    >
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