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Thread: Battlewise

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    Senior Member Osprey's Avatar
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    So this is probably aimed at Irdeggman, but I have a question: Why was the Battlewise blood ability revamped for the BRCS? In 2e, it added +1 to attack and defense of all units under the scion's command - a truly significant advantage in any battle. In fact, here is the exact description from the original rulebook:

    The scion with this ability is a military genius, blessed with an uncanny power to analyze enemy weaknesses, create sound plans of attack, and inspire troops to victory. Any army he leads is far more effective than a similar force under another commander.
    There's a few other things: the +1 attack and defense to all units commanded personally, and the fact that 2 leaders with Battlewise cancel out each others' advantages from the ability.

    So...this is a blood ability that essentially gifts a scion of Anduiras or Azrai with a decisive natural talent as a tactician and battlefield commander. But it's definitely focused on tactical brilliance, with inspirational leadership being the last (and IMO most minor) aspect.

    The BRCS ability, by contrast, grants the scion with Battlewise the ability to apply a Morale bonus based on his ranks in Lead to his own and allied units on the field. Oh yeah, and he adds +2 EL to the hero unit of which he is a part. Bonus.

    While giving morale bonuses to his own and allied troops is nice, does it really compare to giving an attack and defense bonus to all troops under his command? Also, does it truly represent the power's description, that of tactical genius? Seems more like a purely pyschological effect - inspirational leadership yes, tactical genius, not really. High morale and high combat effectiveness aren't quite the same thing. In 2e, Great Courage was the ability meant to grant that decisive morale advantage to one's army. Now the 2 abilities are somewhat redundant, except that Great Courage has been dumbed down so that it affects only one unit.

    Why? Were they too powerful in 2e?

    Why not a direct conversion of Battlewise, and one that compliments Great Courage? +2 Attack and Defense to all units under the scion's command (but NOT all allied units) would have been a direct conversion into the BRCS battlesystem.

    Then Great Courage could have been done as the BRCS version of Battlewise - add the scion's Lead bonus to morale of all friendly units on the field so long as the scion is physically present and visible.

    Wouldn't these powers be more complimentary and less redundant this way, as well as keeping the original flavor of the Battlewise ability?

    -Osprey

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    IMO, the Battlewise ability WAS too powerful in 2e. Any character WITH this ability vastly overpowered those that didn't, and campaigns generally devolved down to each nation having one (or more) generals or regents with this ability, and that was it. Thus negating how special it was.

    However, I believe you are correct, Osprey. Battlewise should be a tactical ability, not a morale influencing ability. The +2 to the EL adds power to the unit he leads, but not to the army.
    Granting the ability to the whole army may still be a little too powerful. And, it should only be a +1 to defence and attack still, nothing more. Instead, how about giving it to a number of units equal to either the modifed Leadership score, or the skill level in lead of the army?

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    Depending on how usefull the Warcraft is in your campaign you might consider Battlewise giving a considerable bonus to this skill.

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    Senior Member Osprey's Avatar
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    However, I believe you are correct, Osprey. Battlewise should be a tactical ability, not a morale influencing ability. The +2 to the EL adds power to the unit he leads, but not to the army.
    Granting the ability to the whole army may still be a little too powerful. And, it should only be a +1 to defence and attack still, nothing more. Instead, how about giving it to a number of units equal to either the modifed Leadership score, or the skill level in lead of the army?
    I think you are correct that it was quite powerful to have a commander with Battlewise in 2e. However, this did match the power's description, and reflected Anuire's military history from what I could tell: armies with Battlewise leaders "are far more effective than a similar force under another commander."

    If you minimize the power too much, then the power no longer matches the description. A bonus to Warcraft gives initiative advantages, which are useful, but doesn't make a huge difference without the troops to back it up.

    In my battlesystem, a commander can personally command up to [10 + 1 per +5 Lead] units on the field at any one time. The BRCS system currently has system for command limits, so it does become more problematic.

    I would still vouch for +2 Attack and Defence added to units under the commander's direct command. This is still significantly weaker than the orignal power, yet still fairly similar in its effect.

    In the old system: +1 Attack and Defense was bigger, because the old warcard system was on a scale of 1-6. The BRCS system is on a 1-20 scale. So +2 on a
    1-20 scale is really a weaker equivalent bonus.

    Second, the old power applied to ALL allied units on the field! This is immense, as it could mean 3 or 4 allied armies could all be getting bonuses from one battlewise scion on the field.

    So +2 Attack and Defense to all units under the Battlewise scion's personal command seems like a fair compromise to bringing it in line with the original power but toned down a bit to fit a major power.

    Not knowing how or if Ch 6 is going to be revised, it's hard to hammer it down or make it fit any better than this right now.

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    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    Not knowing how or if Ch 6 is going to be revised, it's hard to hammer it down or make it fit any better than this right now.
    Yes, that about sums it up. We need to see what happens to Ch 6 and then relook at how this fits. I have no problem with that (in fact it was something in my mind from the beginning sort of like bloodform and bloodtrait).

    In some of our earlier discussion of the BRCS-playtest morale benefits had varying effects (that is we had had several different concepts in mind) and thus it made sense at the time to tie the two together and leave it at that.

    IMO I really don't like the + to attack and defense. That doesn't at all seem to fit the description of the ability. A tie into warcraft does make sense, probably a bonus to warcraft checks and a bonus to the EL of the hero's unit (reflecting the units commanded personnaly concept), maybe extending that bonus to units in the same stack. Somehow have to be careful not to allow the bonus to apply if the commander is always in the reserve. This just doesn't fit the concept of commanding personnaly to me.

    Regardless we need to see how Ch 6 pans out and then try to fit in the mechanics.
    Duane Eggert

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    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    I just rechecked the Chap 2 text along with what is in the playtest Ch 6.


    Battlewise (from sanctioned chap 2)

    "In addition, as long as the scion is on the field of battle, all allied units gain a bonus to morale. This bonus is equivalent to the bonus that the scion would normally provide to a unit under their direct command (+1 bonus to morale for every 5 ranks of Lead)."

    This does reproduce the effect from the 2nd ed rule fairly well using the mechanics of the BRCS playtest. Every unit gains the effect as if the scion was in the unit. The way morale bonuses work in 3.5 it translates to the attack and defense bonus so it is actually performing what was intended by the 2nd ed description. Even though the phrasing may seem to be otherwise, the way that 3.5 mechanics work it translates fairly well. And since it slides with ranks in Lead it allows for scaling with scion's level.

    Now for Courage, great. Let's see the original 2nd ed description said all units within the scion's area of the battlefield. The present way that Ch 6 is written there can only be 1 unit in a square so this does translate pretty directly.

    Again, once the mechanics of Ch 6 are finalized I'll take another look to ensure that these blood abilities match the mechanics being used. But as it stands they pretty much do a very true and direct correlation from the 2nd ed abilities.
    Duane Eggert

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    Senior Member Osprey's Avatar
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    IMO I really don't like the + to attack and defense. That doesn't at all seem to fit the description of the ability. A tie into warcraft does make sense, probably a bonus to warcraft checks and a bonus to the EL of the hero's unit (reflecting the units commanded personnaly concept), maybe extending that bonus to units in the same stack.
    Where does the "unit commanded personally" concept come from? The power's description from 2e talks about making any army he leads far more effective.

    While granting a Warcraft bonus makes logical sense, the problem is that the advantage from Warcraft isn't a decisive enough advantage compared to what is implied by the power's description. An EL bonus to other units only works if heroes are leading affected units in the first place.

    A bonus to attack does, IMO, simulate an ability to analyze [and exploit] enemy weaknesses and create sound plans of attack. If a Warcraft check also granted this sort of ability, then I'd be all for the power granting a skill bonus.

    One option: for every 5 ranks in Warcraft, a commander with Battlewise may treat one additional unit on the field as if he were personally leading it (thus treating the unit as if it had a commander whose EL equals the scion's). Distance for this effect depends on the new rules.


    Somehow have to be careful not to allow the bonus to apply if the commander is always in the reserve. This just doesn't fit the concept of commanding personnaly to me.
    Yup, I had always assumed a commander must be physically present on the battlefield to grant the Battlewise bonuses. Would be good to include this in the description.

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    Senior Member Osprey's Avatar
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    This does reproduce the effect from the 2nd ed rule fairly well using the mechanics of the BRCS playtest. Every unit gains the effect as if the scion was in the unit. The way morale bonuses work in 3.5 it translates to the attack and defense bonus so it is actually performing what was intended by the 2nd ed description. Even though the phrasing may seem to be otherwise, the way that 3.5 mechanics work it translates fairly well. And since it slides with ranks in Lead it allows for scaling with scion's level.
    So are you saying then that Morale will be dropped as a seperate stat for units in the revision? Currently, the bonus was only to the unit's morale rating. Now if this is a Morale bonus to attack and defense, this is an entirely different mechanic than the BRCS used. It's confusing as to what Morale is referring to.

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    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Osprey@Jul 31 2004, 03:05 PM
    IMO I really don't like the + to attack and defense. That doesn't at all seem to fit the description of the ability. A tie into warcraft does make sense, probably a bonus to warcraft checks and a bonus to the EL of the hero's unit (reflecting the units commanded personnaly concept), maybe extending that bonus to units in the same stack.
    Where does the "unit commanded personally" concept come from? The power's description from 2e talks about making any army he leads far more effective.
    BRRB (pg 24)

    Battlewise

    "The scion adds one point to the attack and defense ratings of any army he commands personally - he must be present at the battle to gain this advantage."

    I guess it comes down to what "he commands personally" means and how to best interpret this. Using that it applies to every unit on the battlefied definitely makes this ability waay too powerful.

    The text description also includes inspiring troops ". . .to analyze enemy weaknesses, create sound plans of attack, and inspire toops to victory."
    Duane Eggert

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    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Osprey@Jul 31 2004, 03:05 PM

    An EL bonus to other units only works if heroes are leading affected units in the first place.
    I think you are missing something in the text. The EL bonus applies as if the scion was personally with the unit. So a hero does not need to lead the unit.

    "In addition, as long as the scion is on the field of battle, all allied units gain a bonus to morale. This bonus is equivalent to the bonus that the scion would normally provide to a unit under their direct command (+1 bonus to morale for every 5 ranks of Lead)."
    Duane Eggert

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