View Poll Results: What should the base DC for Domain Actions be?

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  • (1) 5

    0 0%
  • (2) 10

    4 33.33%
  • (3) 15

    3 25.00%
  • (4) 20

    2 16.67%
  • (5) Other (please provide suggestions with as much detail as possible)

    2 16.67%
  • (6) Abstain

    1 8.33%
Results 1 to 8 of 8
  1. #1
    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    Note this is the base only, the modifers will on a different poll. Only 4 are provided since they cover the most common variations.

    Also assume that all of these polls are for a regent performing the action himself. Any additional adjustments/modifiers for Lts performing actions will be determined later after we nail down the 'core' mechanics.

    Things to keep in mind (already voted on):

    (1) Most Domain actions will require RP to be spent to perform.
    (2) The success will be determined by a modified skill check (basically a d20 roll with all modifers {for a skill check} divided by 5.
    Duane Eggert

  2. #2
    Birthright Developer Raesene Andu's Avatar
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    I voted for other because I do not think there should be one sole DC that covers all actions. Not all actions are equally difficult.

    One other thing to consider reintroducing if you decide on a higher DC, is allowing province levels to affect DC of actions performed. A province ruler should be able to influence the actions of holdings within his lands.

    Personally, I would use something like the following for the DCs.

    Adventure: No DC
    Agitate: DC = 20
    Build: DC = 10
    Contest: DC = 10
    Create Holding: DC = 10
    Create Province: DC = 20
    Declare War: No DC
    Decree: No DC
    Diplomacy: DC = 15
    Disband: No DC
    Espionage: DC = 20/30 - level of province (20 with spy network, 30 without)
    Finances: No DC
    Forge Ley Line: DC = 10
    Fortify: DC = 10
    Grant: DC = 0/10
    Investiture: DC = 0/10/20 (0 for willing ceremonies, 10 for investing conquered provinces/holdings, 20 for divestiture).
    Lieutenant: No DC
    Move Troops: No DC
    Muster Armies: No DC
    Ply Trade: No DC
    Realm Spell: No DC
    Research: Special
    Rule Holding: DC = 10 + level of holding
    Rule Province: DC = 20 + level of province
    Trade Route: DC = 10
    Training: No DC
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  3. #3
    Senior Member Osprey's Avatar
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    One thing to consider is this: when determining base DC's, we now know that Rp will be required for most actions. However, can RP be spent to modify all domain actions? In the current BRCS rules, Rp can be spent for most actions except Diplomacy and Rule Province. Are we going to keep it this way? Personally, I like that setup. However, if RP cannot be spent to support these actions, then the DC's need to be carefully set to make those actions challenging without being impossible.

    Raesene,
    If the DC to rule a province is 20+province level, then how exactly is ruling a high level province even feasible any more? By setting the DC that high, we are saying that only a ruler with great skills has even a chance of ruling even the lowliest province up. And ruling a high level province will be out of reach for all but the most amazing of rulers. Let's take Ilien - say the ruler wanted to rule it up to level 8. That's DC 28. A 10th level ruler, say with Master Administrator and Regent Focus: Rule Province, and an Administrate skill of at least +15, will get a total of +9 to the Rule Province action, +10 if the province is Helpful. So a fairly high level regent with most of the right skills still needs an 18 to succeed - almost impossible, and very expensive to even try.

    Now, if you've done all of this math yourself, I'm guessing that setting the Rule Province base DC at 20 means you prefer the BR world to be one where province levels rarely change.

    Personally, I think this is a bit too harsh. I prefer DC's to be attainable but not easy. I think setting the DC at 15+target level for most rule/contest actions keeps things reachable.

    When Ruling a province, this means it's still possible for a less-talented regent than in the above example to rule a low-level province with a small chance of success, or for a more talented regent to have at least a 50/50 chance of success on the easier ones (levels 1-4). Ruling a high level province like above would now drop the DC by 5 - so ruling Ilien to 8 with the above regent would need a 13+ in a best case scenario - still only a 40% chance of success. It's still probable that the attempt will fail, but good enough odds to be worth trying - IF the regent is dedicated to ruling provinces by taking 2 key feats and maxing out his Admin skill.

    So my vote goes to base DC of 15 + target holding level, but this is really only for Rule and Contest actions, possibly Agitate as well - other actions may have different DC's depending on the action and circumstances. Espionage and Diplomacy especially need to have variable DC's depending upon what goals are being attempted.

    Trade Routes: flat DC 10 is ridiculously easy. From a mechanical viewpoint, these are big cash cows that need to be balanced rather than encouraged becuase it's a piece of cake to set one up. Realistically, there are a LOT of logistics involved in setting up a steady trade route that will last indefinitely (barring it being contested). IMC I make the DC's for trade routes 10 + the total GB value of the route - and I would have no problem upping this base DC to 15+GB value as well, since RP can be spent to ensure its success and the rewards are quite worthwhile in most cases.

    Osprey

  4. #4
    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    I tend to mostly agree with Osprey here.

    Ian your proposed DCs and the leading vote getter so far (DC 10) mimic the 2nd ed mechanics.

    We have already determined that the domain actions will be easier to succeed at due to the nature of the 3.5 game mechanics. We have also voted to use all modifers divided by 5 vice the ranks divided by 5 as a modifier to the d20 roll thus making success even easier.

    Many feats have been modified to add to the success chance. Regent focus alone gives a +4 to the check - note that these domain action feat bonuses are to the check and not a skill modifier, although some have both. And all of these bonuses will stack since they are unnamed and the check isn't a skill or attack roll.

    We haven't even addressed the affect of domain attitude on domain actions in a province - many people expressed a desire to have it apply bonuses to all domain (or almost all).

    It will be highly likely that a 1st-2nd level character can have +7 to his check for a given domain action. This is even more likely to happen in a domain-based game where the characters aren't worrying about gaining adventure level feats and would focus on domain level ones primarily.

    The only times a natural 1 is a failure and a natural 20 a success are for saving throws and attack rolls (when they can hit). Something to keep in mind - there is no automatic failure. Heck if the modifiers are sufficient then there is not even a dice roll since success is automatic.

    We need to start looking at how things fit together as a whole and not taking everything as an individual question. We can't lose the forest for the trees.

    IMO a base DC (for most domain actions) of less than 15 is pretty much tantamount to saying the action will be relatively automatic. IMO a DC of 20 is actually more reasonable given the large amount of modifiers happening to the check (and even more coming, IMO, once we get down to the nits of domain actions, domain attitudes, etc.)
    Duane Eggert

  5. #5
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    Originally posted by irdeggman@Oct 15 2004, 09:15 PM
    I tend to mostly agree with Osprey here.

    Ian your proposed DCs and the leading vote getter so far (DC 10) mimic the 2nd ed mechanics.

    We have already determined that the domain actions will be easier to succeed at due to the nature of the 3.5 game mechanics. We have also voted to use all modifers divided by 5 vice the ranks divided by 5 as a modifier to the d20 roll thus making success even easier.

    Many feats have been modified to add to the success chance. Regent focus alone gives a +4 to the check - note that these domain action feat bonuses are to the check and not a skill modifier, although some have both. And all of these bonuses will stack since they are unnamed and the check isn't a skill or attack roll.

    We haven't even addressed the affect of domain attitude on domain actions in a province - many people expressed a desire to have it apply bonuses to all domain (or almost all).

    It will be highly likely that a 1st-2nd level character can have +7 to his check for a given domain action. This is even more likely to happen in a domain-based game where the characters aren't worrying about gaining adventure level feats and would focus on domain level ones primarily.

    The only times a natural 1 is a failure and a natural 20 a success are for saving throws and attack rolls (when they can hit). Something to keep in mind - there is no automatic failure. Heck if the modifiers are sufficient then there is not even a dice roll since success is automatic.

    We need to start looking at how things fit together as a whole and not taking everything as an individual question. We can't lose the forest for the trees.

    IMO a base DC (for most domain actions) of less than 15 is pretty much tantamount to saying the action will be relatively automatic. IMO a DC of 20 is actually more reasonable given the large amount of modifiers happening to the check (and even more coming, IMO, once we get down to the nits of domain actions, domain attitudes, etc.)
    I havent voted yet because Im a bit confused.


    It will be highly likely that a 1st-2nd level character can have +7 to his check for a given domain action. This is even more likely to happen in a domain-based game where the characters aren't worrying about gaining adventure level feats and would focus on domain level ones primarily.
    But that would be for a character who was min/maxed for a specific domain action, right? If a character is specificaly engineered for a domain action he should be good. There might even be some resonable roleplaying explanation for such a focused character (Endier and espionage for example). However, this regent would be average or useless at other domain actions.
    But perhaps we should also consider the average regent or even the minimum regent.
    IMO a base DC (for most domain actions) of less than 15 is pretty much tantamount to saying the action will be relatively automatic. IMO a DC of 20 is actually more reasonable given the large amount of modifiers happening to the check (and even more coming, IMO, once we get down to the nits of domain actions, domain attitudes, etc.)
    I dont yet have a clear picture of all the modifiers that can happen to each check, but you think that even an average regent (one not specifically engineered to exploit domain rules) will have 5-10 + on a large spectrum of domain actions? I play a roleplaying emphasized style, where some characters even have trouble with the BRCS regency collection ratings because of their lack of domain skills (fighters get 2 skill points&#33. For us taking a regency focus on a domain action would be rather unlikely. Would a DC of 20 cut us out from effective domain actions without buckets of RP?
    This goes along with my earlier arguments against a base RP cost. There are numerous ways to deal with a base RP hurdle in the BR setting (RP for adventuring, DM fiat giving RP NPCs, etc) to help out the little struggeling regent. I'm cool with that mechanism of making blood important.
    But the base DC goes to the core of the entire domain rules. Let me provide a few examples to explore the ramafications:
    A seventh level fighter: Has a maximum skill rank of class skills at 10. Low to average skill points might be 20-25. So from skills he might expect a get a total bonus of +4 to +5 to spread to a few domain action checks. If he gets cross class skills related to domain actions, the total bonus will drop. He will probably spend skill points on some adventureing skills so this will drop the bonus even further. If he doesnt spend any points on adventuring/real life skills, then he will have difficulty functioning outside of the beauracracy (DM think assination/kidnapping attempt). If he doesnt get a domain regent feat, he might have a bonus, of +1 or +2, on one or two domain actions from his skills. With a DC 20, an average 7th level fighter would need quite a few good bonuses from other factors to do anything without alot of RP. Is a 7th level fighter a bad regent? A quick look at 2e BR shows many regents who are fighters 7th or below (Thurazor, Osoerde, Coeranys,Markazor, Mur-kilad, Cariele, Alamie, Diemed, Roesone, etc). Some of these will become nobles in 3e, but noble is not available in all regions [and I suspect that the fighter will remain D&D staple].
    Of course this is just a rough look at the math. You probably have a better idea of how it would play out. But the low end of the spectrum is important to consider as well as the topped out regent. I intentionaly took the fighter as my example because he is wide spread in Cerelia and hurts for skills, but almost every class will have a domain action which they are at the low end of the spectrum for.

    We need to start looking at how things fit together as a whole and not taking everything as an individual question. We can't lose the forest for the trees.
    I know we are just looking at domain action that the regent is personally involved in, but thinking holisically... For luetenants or court actions will the base DC change? Would this not be a bit confusing? Maybe a straight negative for different ways of the doing the action would be understandable, but with a DC 20 making it harder when the court acts would make it really hard because in general arnt courts worse then regents? Just some random thoughts....



    I think a DC 15 action might be almost automatic for someone who was min/maxed for that action and had conditions in their favor, but that same regent would think DC 15 is hard for other actions.


    Am I missing common modifiers which will effectively bring down the base DC for most actions (more than 1 or 2)?

    By the way I kinda agree with Raesene Andu that different actions might have different difficulties....if we can ever figure out the mechanics for a typical or base action.

  6. #6
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    I generally agree with Raesene. Ian and I see eye to eye on a lot of these core rules. At a quick glance, his DCs look acceptable.
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  7. #7
    Birthright Developer Raesene Andu's Avatar
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    There is no precedent for one base DC in 3.5E rules. If you look at skills checks, poison DC, strength of locks, anything really, all have different DCs. Settling on a single base DC for domain actions, be it 5, 10, 15, or 20, doesn't make sense. No matter what you will do, you will need to adjust the DC of each action to balance the rules.

    This is why, I propsed a different DC for each action. Now I'm not set on the actual DCs, the ones I present were just examples that I wrote up without really thinking about them too much, but I do think that limiting the rules to a single base DC is a bad idea.

    Now to everyone's comments.

    I did do the maths on rule province, and yes I agree without RP being spent and with a DC of 20 it does become a more difficult action to achieve, but this is a good thing. Easily increases to province level is at the core of most balance issues in the BR domain rules. I would even make it harder, but saying that a wizard's souce holding levels could be applied to increase/decrease the DC of the roll. This gives wizards some power to stop province rules just increasing the level of the province and destroying their holdings seemingly at will.

    Trade Routes: Raise the DC if you think it necessary, however, trade routes can be shut down very easily by province rulers, with no way for the guild to prevent it happening. Also, trade routes have already been significantly curtailed from 2E rules. They cannot be created as a realm action any more, so you can only create 1/domain round. Their income has been cut for the most part, and they are still just as easy as ever to shut down. Increasing the DC to create them makes guild regent less likely to do so. I wouldn't be opposed to making the DC 10 + GB value though, that would fit.

    Agitate: This is a significant action. It can make sweeping changes to a realm's loyalty very quickly. This is why I proposed the DC = 20. You then adjust that by the regent's skills, and I would also adjust the DC by the levels of temple and law the regent might control.

    Oh, and the DC I proposed are for the most part at least +5 over the 2E chance of success. The only exceptions were rule holdings and contest, which remains at DC = 10. To counter bonuses due to 3.5E skills, I have no problem with the base DC of those two actions being increased to 15. Rule holding does need to keep its +level of holding modifier though, as it can have RP spent to adjust the roll.
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  8. #8
    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    I'm closing this poll. I had a feeling it was premature and based on comments, etc. I'm convinced it is.

    Before we get down to setting DCs for domain actions we need to figure out all (or most of them) modifiers that may apply.
    Duane Eggert

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