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  1. #1
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    In http://www.birthright.net/forums/index.php...t=0&#entry29855]this tread[/URL], the idea of named bonus types for domain actions came up and seems to have some merit. Exactly how they might work and how their non-stacking properties would help stop the explosion of modifiers to actions needs a bit of work though. [Pg 21 of the 3.5e DMG has the original bonus types]

    On the surface all of the named bonuses in the DMG dont seem to apply to domain scale. They seem to all influence an individual. Some might influence the regent or luetenant performing the action and thus help either indirectly (by increasing skills etc that then influence a modifier) or directly. However, the descriptions and names of the regular DMG named bonues are so vauge that it doesnt take much peotic liscence to expand them to a whole province of people and things. Duane pointed this out and due to my Dilbert-esque persona Im going to pound on it with the dull thud of logic and analysis until something elegant is forged.

    A completely anal list of all the Core 3.5 named bonues and some province scale appliactions:

    Alchemical: Some arcane realm spells or mass quantities of potions or magic items might directly help/hinder a domain action. A potion of thruthfulness might help in interrogations for Espionage checks. Potions which the regent imbues himself might also give an alchemical bonus. Currently, I dont think there are any examples of this kind of bonus being used to directly influence domain action checks.

    Armor: A named armor bonus type has some obvious applications in the military unti system. Giving all of your troops nice new shields would be an example.

    Circumstance: I think in an unstated manner this bonus is already in the d20 domain system. Circumstance bonuses usually stack, and thus wont help keep domain action modifiers in a sane range. Mostly up to DM to control.

    Competence: This named bonus is so obviously what the skill modifier divided by five is. I think we should systematically refer to this skill based modifier as a competence bonus. In making this skill based modifier a named bonus we gain several things. First of all it makes it possible to open up each domain to multiple modifying skills. Each applicable skill could be used to calculate a competence bonus, however because the different competence bonuses would not stack only the highest would be applied. Profession(merchant) or appraise might apply to Create Trade Route; Sense Motive, Gather Information, Forgery, etc might apply to Espionage; Lead and Perform(oratory) might apply to Agitate. This would help open up game play in the way 3e opened up classes. There could be several different ways to become good at a domain action. This would let PCs and their DM create a richer and deeper roleplay around the simple domain action check. Exactly what skills to include might be tricky (is PC great at forgery alone good at espionage). However, because this skill type of bonus is already used extensively you can easily see how making it a named bonus can be helpful in game balance. Other things might be considered a competence bonus. Having a skilled advisor help the regent. The difference between a regent, skilled luetenant, an unskilled luetenant, or a court perform the action might be expressed as a competence bonus or penalty. The regent mastery feat might give a competence bonus.

    Deflection: Ummm.... Province wide deflector shields, ala Star Wars,... Maybe not for Cerelia. Maybe something in the combat system...

    Dodge: Again only for the combat system possibly....

    Enhancement: This named bonus is so vaguely worded that we could apply this classification to any set of domain action bonuses that we wanted to stop from running wild. The bonus that you get from regency expense or bloodline abilities could be an enchancement. The potion of Regency in the BRCS gave a +2 enhancement bonus to a domain action. Any spells which directly influence a domain action check could be an enhancement bonus. [There is a whole class of buff spells which assist domain level actions that could be added to the realm spells. Currently Honest Dealings is the only spell which directly places a modifier on a domain action check.] Other magic items might give an enhancement bonus

    Inherent: "An inherent bonus is a bonus ... that results from powerful magic, such as a wish spell." Originally for ability score modifiers only, the above description might work for bloodline regency and abilities. The above potion of regency might instead be renamed to inherent. Then when using the potion you are in a way getting a +2 bonus from free RP. But to get to +3 bonus instead of spending 1 RP you would have to spend 3 RP, because the +2 and the +1 would not stack. Other ways of classifying blood power might be better.

    Insight: Probably the kind of bonus a divination spell would give to a domain scale action. An Army of Haelyn commanded by a paladin with the True Strike realm spell?

    Luck: More magic obvious possibilities....

    Morale:
    Duane said:
    Morale bonuses have been made to fit the domain level of play by applying them to troops in BRCS, so the precedent has already been set to "expand" the normal use to include domain level of play.
    The attitude/loyalty bonus that is being discussed as I type, would naturally fit as a morale bonus.

    Natural Armor: Again military...

    Profane: Evil spells which dont yet exist...

    Racial: These bonuses are so obvious that I am amazed they havent found their way into BR. Surely the elves are better at some domain actions then others?

    Sacred: Good spells which dont exist....or another place to put regency bonuses given their divine origin...

    Size: The bonus derived from holding levels could work as a domain level size bonus. The size of ones court could also fit in here. Would source level fit here or in some more magical bonus type?

    Unnamed: Freely stacks. Virtually every modifier in the domain rules now.

    Almost all of the original named bonuses fit quite well into the domain and military unit level of play. Having named bonuses that dont stack help game balance, consitency, and ecourage balanced play rather than min/maxing. In going thru the above list many ideas for new modifiers come to mind because their individual level counterparts already exist. A good way to think about the domain rules is each domain as a person, the regent the brain, the land and the people are the soul and the body, etc. Bringing 3e mechanisms into the domain rules is then a bit more obvious.
    However, my using the named bonuses to brainstorm new modifiers is kind of the opposite of what I set out to do. The biggest power of named bonuses is to help provide a range of modifiers that doesnt blow up and break d20. It does this by not allowing bonuses to stack. To best incorporate named bonuses into the domain level of play we have to identify if there are any bonuses which are getting out of hand and need to be hemmed in. With a set base DC that does not scale with character level (unlike most combat DC and many skill DCs in adventure level play) domain actions cant have modifiers totals from 15 to 20 and on up. Any base DC set to challenge a regent with action modifiers 15+ (before RP/GB spent) will be impossible for a non-min/maxed regent with a modifier ~1-2. Even if some bonuses arnt getting out of hand naming them now lets a variety of realm spells and magical items be invented later with the same name.

    That being said to frame the discussion, I really like some of the new spells and other modifiers which come to mind when looking at the above list. Let the modifier population explosion begin! Dont worry its balanced, they dont stack. :P

    Of course we dont have to use the original DMG named bonus types, they are just a good starting point that everyone have seen and would understand.

  2. #2
    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    Way to go Danip.

    Good topic and lay out.

    Inherent bonuses only apply to ability scores, if I'm reading the rules correctly.

    I think we should keep out the ones that apply to combat only (like armor, etc.) since they would apply to troops - which aren't really at the domain level of play we are talking about, IMO.

    But new bonus types are something definitely worth a look at.
    Duane Eggert

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    I like Danip's idea. Allow me to chime in and give Dilbert-esque taxonomy of the bonus types he's mentioned.

    Originally posted by Danip+Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM--></div><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (Danip &#064; Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'>Alchemical: Some arcane realm spells or mass quantities of potions or magic items might directly help/hinder a domain action. A potion of thruthfulness might help in interrogations for Espionage checks. Potions which the regent imbues himself might also give an alchemical bonus. Currently, I dont think there are any examples of this kind of bonus being used to directly influence domain action checks.[/b]
    Currently in D&D v.3.5, the only thing that can give you an alchemical bonus is an antitoxin. :blink:

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Armor: A named armor bonus type has some obvious applications in the military unti system. Giving all of your troops nice new shields would be an example.
    "This is the bonus that nonmagical armor gives a character", says my DMG. It also says that a shield bonus "represents the protection a nonmagical shield affords." I don&#39;t think these are really usable at the domain level.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Circumstance: I think in an unstated manner this bonus is already in the d20 domain system. Circumstance bonuses usually stack, and thus wont help keep domain action modifiers in a sane range. Mostly up to DM to control.
    Searching through the d20 SRD, I find that it&#39;s mostly equipment that gives circumstance bonuses. For example, crowbar, portable ram, silk rope, alchemist&#39;s lab, masterwork artisan&#39;s tools, climber&#39;s kit, disguise kit, healer&#39;s kit, magnifying glass, masterwork musical instrument, merchant&#39;s scale, masterwork thieves&#39; tools, masterwork tool, cold weather outfit, and military saddle all give circumstance bonuses, nearly all of them +2 (one of them +5). However, it&#39;s a general rule that favorable/unfavorable conditions can give a +/-2 circumstance bonus/penalty to any (skill) check. I think it&#39;s definitely easy to extrapolate this to the domain level. Certain weather or terrain conditions might give circumstances bonuses or penalties to certain checks, the presence of rivers or roads might give circumstance bonuses, siege engines might give an army circumstance bonuses in a siege, etc.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Competence: This named bonus is so obviously what the skill modifier divided by five is. I think we should systematically refer to this skill based modifier as a competence bonus. In making this skill based modifier a named bonus we gain several things. First of all it makes it possible to open up each domain to multiple modifying skills. Each applicable skill could be used to calculate a competence bonus, however because the different competence bonuses would not stack only the highest would be applied. Profession(merchant) or appraise might apply to Create Trade Route; Sense Motive, Gather Information, Forgery, etc might apply to Espionage; Lead and Perform(oratory) might apply to Agitate. This would help open up game play in the way 3e opened up classes. There could be several different ways to become good at a domain action. This would let PCs and their DM create a richer and deeper roleplay around the simple domain action check. Exactly what skills to include might be tricky (is PC great at forgery alone good at espionage). However, because this skill type of bonus is already used extensively you can easily see how making it a named bonus can be helpful in game balance. Other things might be considered a competence bonus. Having a skilled advisor help the regent. The difference between a regent, skilled luetenant, an unskilled luetenant, or a court perform the action might be expressed as a competence bonus or penalty. The regent mastery feat might give a competence bonus.
    On the one hand, loads and loads of magic items give competence bonuses. On the other hand, there&#39;s only two spells that give competence bonuses. :huh: There&#39;s a small number of other sources that grant competence bonuses, most notably some classes abilities, like a couple of bard songs and a number of terrain masteries of the horizon walker prestige class. My v.3.5 DMG has the following to say on the matter: "When a character has a competence bonus, he actually gets better at what he&#39;s doing". So it seems a competence bonus does not result from one&#39;s own competence, but rather grants one a higher level of competence. That&#39;s a tricky one.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Deflection: Ummm.... Province wide deflector shields, ala Star Wars,... Maybe not for Cerelia. Maybe something in the combat system...
    "A deflection bonus increases a character&#39;s AC by making attacks veer off," says my DMG. No, probably not suitable for the realm level.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Dodge: Again only for the combat system possibly....
    Well, as my DMG words it: "A dodge bonus enhances a character&#39;s ability to get out of the way quickly." That&#39;s an interesting formulation, as it does leave the field wide open as to what kind of checks you could apply a dodge bonus. But no, probably not suitable for the realm level.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Enhancement: This named bonus is so vaguely worded that we could apply this classification to any set of domain action bonuses that we wanted to stop from running wild. The bonus that you get from regency expense or bloodline abilities could be an enchancement. The potion of Regency in the BRCS gave a +2 enhancement bonus to a domain action. Any spells which directly influence a domain action check could be an enhancement bonus. [There is a whole class of buff spells which assist domain level actions that could be added to the realm spells. Currently Honest Dealings is the only spell which directly places a modifier on a domain action check.] Other magic items might give an enhancement bonus
    "An enhancement bonus represents an increase in the strength or effectiveness of a character&#39;s armor or weapon," says my DMG, "or a general bonus to an ability score". I&#39;m just wondering, if we follow up on your idea of treating a realm as person, basically—and I must admit I&#39;ve had similar musings in the past about this subject—then we could give a realm ability scores, right? If we don&#39;t, however, I don&#39;t really see how could apply this one to the realm level.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Inherent: "An inherent bonus is a bonus ... that results from powerful magic, such as a wish spell." Originally for ability score modifiers only, the above description might work for bloodline regency and abilities. The above potion of regency might instead be renamed to inherent. Then when using the potion you are in a way getting a +2 bonus from free RP. But to get to +3 bonus instead of spending 1 RP you would have to spend 3 RP, because the +2 and the +1 would not stack. Other ways of classifying blood power might be better.
    "An inherent bonus is a bonus to an ability score that results from powerful magic," says my DMG. A definitive no-no, I would think.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Insight: Probably the kind of bonus a divination spell would give to a domain scale action. An Army of Haelyn commanded by a paladin with the True Strike realm spell?
    "An insight bonus makes a character better at what he&#39;s doing because has an almost precognitive knowledge of factors pertinent to the activity," says the DMG. Insight bonuses in v.3.5 are basically only given by spell and magic items (and by the horizon walker terrain mastery benefits). However, I don&#39;t see why a ruler couldn&#39;t get an insight bonus from having a team of really good advisors or from getting some really good military intelligence. Of course, then having bad advisors and bad military intelligence can give you an insight penalty. (And I&#39;m sure we can all think of a real-life example here... )

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Luck: More magic obvious possibilities....
    "A luck bonus is a general bonus that represetns good fortune," so sayeth the wise DMG. A few spells and a good number of magic items give these kind of bonuses, but that&#39;s about it. Perhaps we could build some kind of good luck/bad luck mechanism into the realm level of play? Just a suggestion.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Morale:
    Duane said:
    Morale bonuses have been made to fit the domain level of play by applying them to troops in BRCS, so the precedent has already been set to "expand" the normal use to include domain level of play.
    The attitude/loyalty bonus that is being discussed as I type, would naturally fit as a morale bonus.
    Now this is a sure-fire winner we have here. There&#39;s a number of class abilities that give morale bonuses, either to the character itself or to others, there&#39;s a number of magic items and a host of spells that give them, and there&#39;s even a race that has a morale bonus. Note that a morale bonus "represents the effects of greater hope, courage, and determination", so practically anything that can increase hope, courage and determination can give a morale bonus to one thing or another. I can see this type of bonus being used a lot at the realm level.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Natural Armor: Again military...
    Yeah, let&#39;s not go there. This has absolutely no place at the realm level.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Profane: Evil spells which dont yet exist...
    "A profane bonus represents the power of evil," says the DMG. Sounds like something a bloodline of Azrai could grant somehow. In v.3.5, it&#39;s only spells that do this, however.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Racial: These bonuses are so obvious that I am amazed they havent found their way into BR. Surely the elves are better at some domain actions then others?
    Oh yes, this one&#39;s a real prize, too. The bonus, or penalty, should depend on the race of the inhabitants of the province, and not on the ruler, though, I would think.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Sacred: Good spells which dont exist....or another place to put regency bonuses given their divine origin...
    Same yada as for profane bonuses.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Size: The bonus derived from holding levels could work as a domain level size bonus. The size of ones court could also fit in here. Would source level fit here or in some more magical bonus type?
    Yeah, I don&#39;t know. I can&#39;t really imaging how this one would be used on the realm level.

    <!--QuoteBegin-Danip
    @Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Unnamed: Freely stacks. Virtually every modifier in the domain rules now.[/quote]I think we have get rid of as much as these as possible. We really have to encourage more min/maxing—as opposed to pile-it-on max/maxing.
    <span style='color:darkgray'>&quot;I like to be passionate and sincere, but I also like to have fun and act like a dork... Geeks unite.&quot;
    &#160;</span>&#160;<span style='color:brightgray'>&#160;&#160;—Kurt Cobain</span>

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    Originally posted by the Falcon+Oct 28 2004, 07:49 PM--></div><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>QUOTE (the Falcon @ Oct 28 2004, 07:49 PM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'> I like Danip&#39;s idea. Allow me to chime in and give Dilbert-esque taxonomy of the bonus types he&#39;s mentioned.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Alchemical: Some arcane realm spells or mass quantities of potions or magic items might directly help/hinder a domain action. A potion of thruthfulness might help in interrogations for Espionage checks. Potions which the regent imbues himself might also give an alchemical bonus. Currently, I dont think there are any examples of this kind of bonus being used to directly influence domain action checks.
    Currently in D&D v.3.5, the only thing that can give you an alchemical bonus is an antitoxin. :blink:

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Armor: A named armor bonus type has some obvious applications in the military unti system. Giving all of your troops nice new shields would be an example.
    "This is the bonus that nonmagical armor gives a character", says my DMG. It also says that a shield bonus "represents the protection a nonmagical shield affords." I don&#39;t think these are really usable at the domain level.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Circumstance: I think in an unstated manner this bonus is already in the d20 domain system. Circumstance bonuses usually stack, and thus wont help keep domain action modifiers in a sane range. Mostly up to DM to control.
    Searching through the d20 SRD, I find that it&#39;s mostly equipment that gives circumstance bonuses. For example, crowbar, portable ram, silk rope, alchemist&#39;s lab, masterwork artisan&#39;s tools, climber&#39;s kit, disguise kit, healer&#39;s kit, magnifying glass, masterwork musical instrument, merchant&#39;s scale, masterwork thieves&#39; tools, masterwork tool, cold weather outfit, and military saddle all give circumstance bonuses, nearly all of them +2 (one of them +5). However, it&#39;s a general rule that favorable/unfavorable conditions can give a +/-2 circumstance bonus/penalty to any (skill) check. I think it&#39;s definitely easy to extrapolate this to the domain level. Certain weather or terrain conditions might give circumstances bonuses or penalties to certain checks, the presence of rivers or roads might give circumstance bonuses, siege engines might give an army circumstance bonuses in a siege, etc.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Competence: This named bonus is so obviously what the skill modifier divided by five is. I think we should systematically refer to this skill based modifier as a competence bonus. In making this skill based modifier a named bonus we gain several things. First of all it makes it possible to open up each domain to multiple modifying skills. Each applicable skill could be used to calculate a competence bonus, however because the different competence bonuses would not stack only the highest would be applied. Profession(merchant) or appraise might apply to Create Trade Route; Sense Motive, Gather Information, Forgery, etc might apply to Espionage; Lead and Perform(oratory) might apply to Agitate. This would help open up game play in the way 3e opened up classes. There could be several different ways to become good at a domain action. This would let PCs and their DM create a richer and deeper roleplay around the simple domain action check. Exactly what skills to include might be tricky (is PC great at forgery alone good at espionage). However, because this skill type of bonus is already used extensively you can easily see how making it a named bonus can be helpful in game balance. Other things might be considered a competence bonus. Having a skilled advisor help the regent. The difference between a regent, skilled luetenant, an unskilled luetenant, or a court perform the action might be expressed as a competence bonus or penalty. The regent mastery feat might give a competence bonus.
    On the one hand, loads and loads of magic items give competence bonuses. On the other hand, there&#39;s only two spells that give competence bonuses. :huh: There&#39;s a small number of other sources that grant competence bonuses, most notably some classes abilities, like a couple of bard songs and a number of terrain masteries of the horizon walker prestige class. My v.3.5 DMG has the following to say on the matter: "When a character has a competence bonus, he actually gets better at what he&#39;s doing". So it seems a competence bonus does not result from one&#39;s own competence, but rather grants one a higher level of competence. That&#39;s a tricky one.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Deflection: Ummm.... Province wide deflector shields, ala Star Wars,... Maybe not for Cerelia. Maybe something in the combat system...
    "A deflection bonus increases a character&#39;s AC by making attacks veer off," says my DMG. No, probably not suitable for the realm level.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Dodge: Again only for the combat system possibly....
    Well, as my DMG words it: "A dodge bonus enhances a character&#39;s ability to get out of the way quickly." That&#39;s an interesting formulation, as it does leave the field wide open as to what kind of checks you could apply a dodge bonus. But no, probably not suitable for the realm level.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Enhancement: This named bonus is so vaguely worded that we could apply this classification to any set of domain action bonuses that we wanted to stop from running wild. The bonus that you get from regency expense or bloodline abilities could be an enchancement. The potion of Regency in the BRCS gave a +2 enhancement bonus to a domain action. Any spells which directly influence a domain action check could be an enhancement bonus. [There is a whole class of buff spells which assist domain level actions that could be added to the realm spells. Currently Honest Dealings is the only spell which directly places a modifier on a domain action check.] Other magic items might give an enhancement bonus
    "An enhancement bonus represents an increase in the strength or effectiveness of a character&#39;s armor or weapon," says my DMG, "or a general bonus to an ability score". I&#39;m just wondering, if we follow up on your idea of treating a realm as person, basically—and I must admit I&#39;ve had similar musings in the past about this subject—then we could give a realm ability scores, right? If we don&#39;t, however, I don&#39;t really see how could apply this one to the realm level.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Inherent: "An inherent bonus is a bonus ... that results from powerful magic, such as a wish spell." Originally for ability score modifiers only, the above description might work for bloodline regency and abilities. The above potion of regency might instead be renamed to inherent. Then when using the potion you are in a way getting a +2 bonus from free RP. But to get to +3 bonus instead of spending 1 RP you would have to spend 3 RP, because the +2 and the +1 would not stack. Other ways of classifying blood power might be better.
    "An inherent bonus is a bonus to an ability score that results from powerful magic," says my DMG. A definitive no-no, I would think.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Insight: Probably the kind of bonus a divination spell would give to a domain scale action. An Army of Haelyn commanded by a paladin with the True Strike realm spell?
    "An insight bonus makes a character better at what he&#39;s doing because has an almost precognitive knowledge of factors pertinent to the activity," says the DMG. Insight bonuses in v.3.5 are basically only given by spell and magic items (and by the horizon walker terrain mastery benefits). However, I don&#39;t see why a ruler couldn&#39;t get an insight bonus from having a team of really good advisors or from getting some really good military intelligence. Of course, then having bad advisors and bad military intelligence can give you an insight penalty. (And I&#39;m sure we can all think of a real-life example here... )

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Luck: More magic obvious possibilities....
    "A luck bonus is a general bonus that represetns good fortune," so sayeth the wise DMG. A few spells and a good number of magic items give these kind of bonuses, but that&#39;s about it. Perhaps we could build some kind of good luck/bad luck mechanism into the realm level of play? Just a suggestion.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Morale:
    Duane said:
    Morale bonuses have been made to fit the domain level of play by applying them to troops in BRCS, so the precedent has already been set to "expand" the normal use to include domain level of play.
    The attitude/loyalty bonus that is being discussed as I type, would naturally fit as a morale bonus.
    Now this is a sure-fire winner we have here. There&#39;s a number of class abilities that give morale bonuses, either to the character itself or to others, there&#39;s a number of magic items and a host of spells that give them, and there&#39;s even a race that has a morale bonus. Note that a morale bonus "represents the effects of greater hope, courage, and determination", so practically anything that can increase hope, courage and determination can give a morale bonus to one thing or another. I can see this type of bonus being used a lot at the realm level.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Natural Armor: Again military...
    Yeah, let&#39;s not go there. This has absolutely no place at the realm level.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Profane: Evil spells which dont yet exist...
    "A profane bonus represents the power of evil," says the DMG. Sounds like something a bloodline of Azrai could grant somehow. In v.3.5, it&#39;s only spells that do this, however.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Racial: These bonuses are so obvious that I am amazed they havent found their way into BR. Surely the elves are better at some domain actions then others?
    Oh yes, this one&#39;s a real prize, too. The bonus, or penalty, should depend on the race of the inhabitants of the province, and not on the ruler, though, I would think.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Sacred: Good spells which dont exist....or another place to put regency bonuses given their divine origin...
    Same yada as for profane bonuses.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Size: The bonus derived from holding levels could work as a domain level size bonus. The size of ones court could also fit in here. Would source level fit here or in some more magical bonus type?
    Yeah, I don&#39;t know. I can&#39;t really imaging how this one would be used on the realm level.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Unnamed: Freely stacks. Virtually every modifier in the domain rules now.
    I think we have get rid of as much as these as possible. We really have to encourage more min/maxing—as opposed to pile-it-on max/maxing. [/b]

    Falcon, glad for the feedback. Allow me to use the comments you made as a sounding board.

    First a few general things.
    The domain as a person is a useful metaphor for thinking about how to expand the Core rules to domain scale. But I think it is taking it a bit far in thinking about ability scores, hit points, or other such easy cut and pasting of rule elements.

    To expand the original named bonuses into the domain scale I&#39;ve taken some obvious liberties with the original definitions which you have picked up on. You even noticed my selective quotes of the DMG (drats&#33. However, with the domain scale missing many of the elements of individual DnD, I think it is fair game to expand what the original named bonuses apply to. Several of the original bonuses are defined to apply only to weapons, armor, or ability scores or some such thing. The thing to look at for our purposes is what causes a bonus rather than what the bonus used to apply to.

    Keeping the original named bonuses for the domain scale has several advantages. People are familar with these terms/names. Calling the skill modifier divided by five an applied skill bonus doesnt have the same power as calling it a competence bonus. Players and DMs with a bit of experience with the system will immediately recognize the competence name and understand what we are getting at (non-stacking named bonus type). Any new name for the thing would need to have a section in the BRCS explaining the new type.

    If we are keeping the original names, wide but resonable lattitude on applying the names will be required. There are several goals we should have in mind before we start slapping these named bonuses onto things (in no particular Dilbert-esque order):
    A. The original goal = To keep current and future modifiers to domain action checks within a balanced and playable range.
    B. Some realism. The next greatest boon that named bonuses bring is allowing more and more varied modifiers be considered without breaking the d20 mechanic (see A). However, the non-stacking of bonuses can get odd situations that you just have to live with.
    C. Understandablity. It shouldnt be a great strech of the imagination to figure out why a certain name goes with a certain bonus. We have the power to label anything as anything and set a bad precedent.
    D. Expansion = Already in the process of looking at these bonuses nearly everyone has come up with a new spell, racial trait, blood ability, etc. Rather than create a new specific definition of what the original bonuses mean and apply to at the domain scale, we should embrace and facilitate this creativity. For the sake of house rules, future adventures, magic items, spells, and all other creative expansions to what the BRCS is the foundation of, we must keep that in mind.

    That was a bit wordy and general, so let me respond bonus by bonus to your comments:


    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Alchemical: Some arcane realm spells or mass quantities of potions or magic items might directly help/hinder a domain action. A potion of thruthfulness might help in interrogations for Espionage checks. Potions which the regent imbues himself might also give an alchemical bonus. Currently, I dont think there are any examples of this kind of bonus being used to directly influence domain action checks.
    Currently in D&D v.3.5, the only thing that can give you an alchemical bonus is an antitoxin.
    A perfect example of looking beyond current applications. Even in 3.5e this is a rarely used named bonus, but it is there for future writers. Us included.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Armor: A named armor bonus type has some obvious applications in the military unti system. Giving all of your troops nice new shields would be an example.
    "This is the bonus that nonmagical armor gives a character", says my DMG. It also says that a shield bonus "represents the protection a nonmagical shield affords." I don&#39;t think these are really usable at the domain level.
    Let me leave all bonuses like this which specifically deal with combat and might in some vauge way be put in the military unit combat system out of the conversation. Im just going to limit talk to the domain actions.


    Competence:
    On the one hand, loads and loads of magic items give competence bonuses. On the other hand, there&#39;s only two spells that give competence bonuses. :huh: There&#39;s a small number of other sources that grant competence bonuses, most notably some classes abilities, like a couple of bard songs and a number of terrain masteries of the horizon walker prestige class. My v.3.5 DMG has the following to say on the matter: "When a character has a competence bonus, he actually gets better at what he&#39;s doing". So it seems a competence bonus does not result from one&#39;s own competence, but rather grants one a higher level of competence. That&#39;s a tricky one.
    I could get legalistic and nit pick your grants not results assertion, but that kind of legalism is exactly what I think we should stay away from. For the sake of future expansion creativity I think we shouldnt get so caught up in clever narrow interpretations. I think if we can&#39;t agree that the skill modifier based bonus deserves the name competence, then we are doomed to place named bonuses in the domain system.


    Enhancement:
    "An enhancement bonus represents an increase in the strength or effectiveness of a character&#39;s armor or weapon," says my DMG, "or a general bonus to an ability score". I&#39;m just wondering, if we follow up on your idea of treating a realm as person, basically—and I must admit I&#39;ve had similar musings in the past about this subject—then we could give a realm ability scores, right? If we don&#39;t, however, I don&#39;t really see how could apply this one to the realm level.
    See that box over there? See the outside of the box? Think over there...
    The original enhancement bonus applied to weapons, armor, or ability scores, because that is pretty much what the individual core rules have to work with. A domain check has none of those elements. But is it getting too creative to apply the enhancement bonus in other ways?

    "An inherent bonus is a bonus to an ability score that results from powerful magic," says my DMG. A definitive no-no, I would think.
    Must an inherent bonus always apply to only an ability score? I guess this is a basic open question to everyone. How much can we bend the original mechanic when applying it to the domain system?

    Insight:
    "An insight bonus makes a character better at what he&#39;s doing because has an almost precognitive knowledge of factors pertinent to the activity," says the DMG. Insight bonuses in v.3.5 are basically only given by spell and magic items (and by the horizon walker terrain mastery benefits). However, I don&#39;t see why a ruler couldn&#39;t get an insight bonus from having a team of really good advisors or from getting some really good military intelligence. Of course, then having bad advisors and bad military intelligence can give you an insight penalty. (And I&#39;m sure we can all think of a real-life example here... )
    Of course, my view isnt the only one. I had kinda fixated on the "precognitive" part of the original defenition. I had pegged good advisors as being a competence bonus. However, I could see how a good spynetwork or a successful espionage action could give an insight and an insight bonus to a domain action. If the advisors wernt casting divination spells should it be an insight bonus for their abilities? Perhaps gotta be careful in how vague we go. Some of these bonuses have such broadly appliable names that we might go too far?

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Luck: More magic obvious possibilities....
    "A luck bonus is a general bonus that represetns good fortune," so sayeth the wise DMG. A few spells and a good number of magic items give these kind of bonuses, but that&#39;s about it. Perhaps we could build some kind of good luck/bad luck mechanism into the realm level of play? Just a suggestion.
    Ummm...there is the d20 die roll for randomization.


    Note that a morale bonus "represents the effects of greater hope, courage, and determination", so practically anything that can increase hope, courage and determination can give a morale bonus to one thing or another. I can see this type of bonus being used a lot at the realm level.
    Yes we have a winner&#33; I totally agree. Too easy really...

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Profane: Evil spells which dont yet exist...
    "A profane bonus represents the power of evil," says the DMG. Sounds like something a bloodline of Azrai could grant somehow. In v.3.5, it&#39;s only spells that do this, however.
    In bringining up bloodlines you make me think of an important thing. Currently all blood abilities are unnamed bonuses I think. It is even clearly stated in the BRCS. Blood is so important and is meant to be powerful that having it being non-stacking is probably wrong. We must be sure not to name everything that could take a name. It would really totally, majorly suck to have a cool blood ability and have it not stack with something else. Probably not fitting for the setting.
    This is a danger of named bonuses. As a player I hate that some things dont stack. It is very unrealistic, but for the sake of playability it is nescessary. But not for everything.

    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Racial: These bonuses are so obvious that I am amazed they havent found their way into BR. Surely the elves are better at some domain actions then others?
    Oh yes, this one&#39;s a real prize, too. The bonus, or penalty, should depend on the race of the inhabitants of the province, and not on the ruler, though, I would think.
    I agree a real prize. Here again might not want to get too narrow and make it dependent upon the province population. Ive see quite a few arguments about province race in treads about Rule Province. Can get very complicated, especially as province race doesnt come into the rule calcualtions at any point so far. Unless we can come up with something easy and obvious, I dont want to touch that mess.

    <!--QuoteBegin-Danip
    @Oct 23 2004, 04:14 AM
    Size: The bonus derived from holding levels could work as a domain level size bonus. The size of ones court could also fit in here. Would source level fit here or in some more magical bonus type?
    Yeah, I don&#39;t know. I can&#39;t really imaging how this one would be used on the realm level.[/quote]
    This is a bit of a stretch. But the bonus from holding levels is pretty big. It is one of the main things that is going to make bonuses blow up. It should probably be named and other things which reflect a large orgonizational presence in a province should be similarly named. Kinda realisitic too, if you think about it. More people/hands stops helping after a while. The size label was just the most convenient.


    Please chime in with more thoughts.
    Im especially wondering:
    How free are we to interpet the original named bonuses to the domain system?
    What do you think should be named what?
    What should stay unnamed?
    Has the named bonus idea given you new ideas for spells, items, modifiers, and if so what?

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    Opps....didnt mean to have that huge quote at the begining...sorry.

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    Originally posted by Danip@Oct 30 2004, 11:16 AM
    Opps....didnt mean to have that huge quote at the begining...sorry.
    Well...? Take it away&#33; You do know how to edit your posts, right? h34r:
    <span style='color:darkgray'>&quot;I like to be passionate and sincere, but I also like to have fun and act like a dork... Geeks unite.&quot;
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    Okay, let me just step completely to the other side... *takes a small step and a big leap from one side of the spectrum to the other* ...and look at these from a more lenient, creative, ad-lib, what-have-you point of view. *puts on cap of the free-thinking spirit and dons robe of alternatives*
    Mind you, I&#39;ll just take the liberty of skipping those that I don&#39;t think are even worth considering for the realm level of play and concentrate instead on the ones that I think could really make a difference somehow.

    Alchemical: I still don&#39;t really see how we can use this one. What kind of alchemical concoctions or devices can we come up with that would affect the passing of events on the scale of a realm? It has to be huge, that&#39;s for sure. I&#39;m not actually adverse to using this one, but I just can&#39;t think of a way to use it yet, though.
    Circumstance: Well, this one applies to pretty much any situational factors that influence the check, good or bad. This is pretty much a catch-all for anything that doesn&#39;t fit any of the other nice categories. I don&#39;t think we need to think too much about this one.
    Competence: Okay, I suppose we could expand this one to include not only those things that increase competence, but also those that influence because of competence. I think it should not be too difficult to delimit when this is the case or not.
    Enhancement: Alright, what&#39;s an enhancement? According to my dictionary it&#39;s the heightening, increase or improvement of something&#39;s value, quality, desirability, or attractiveness. Given that definition, it seems to become pretty straightforward, too. Anytime anything improves/worsens the situation because of increased/decreased value/quality/desirability/attractiveness or because it increases/decreases these things, it&#39;s an enhancement bonus/penalty. Make that into a better sentence and I think we&#39;ve got a pretty playable concept here.
    Inherent: Let me get my dictionary again. Inherent seems to be defined as "involved in the constitution or essential character of something; belonging by nature or habit; intrinsic". Right. That&#39;s a tough one. If I try to stay as close as possible to the meaning of the word, it would imply that the bonus/penalty has to result from something that is already naturally part of the realm. mmm... Would a bonus from a holding qualify for this? After all, holdings are a bit like a province&#39;s ability scores, so to speak. Any other takes on this are very welcome.
    Insight: Well, I suppose this would be anything that grants insight or hampers insight, basically, as well as anything that results from insight or lack thereof. Seems very usable to me.
    Luck: Maybe it would still be nice to do something with this. If we continue reasoning in the line that we have done so far, than this bonus/penalty could be the result of the ruler getting lucky. Perhaps a random event could bestow a luck bonus/penalty to certain actions? At least that prevents the good results of random events from stacking too much. Penalties always stack, however, regardless of the type... *evil grin* B)
    Morale: So, this then would be anything that improves/degrades morale or anything resulting from high/low morale. Pretty simple, too.
    Profane/Sacred: Maybe these actually have no place in Birthright. I mean, we&#39;re not really into this whole alignment embodied thing, are we? At least, I always got the impression that alignment in Birthright was a bit less well-defined and not so clear-cut as it is in standard 3rd edition D&D. Correct me if I&#39;m wrong.
    Racial: Let&#39;s just say that any bonus resulting from anyone&#39;s race involved with the realm is a racial bonus/penalty. Unless, of course, it better qualifies for some other kind of bonus type—let me just add that catch. Still, I do think that the race of the ruler can&#39;t have that big an influence on the realm. I&#39;m much more in favor of having the race of the populace of a province play a much greater part. Well, I&#39;m always open to discussion, anyway.
    Size: Alright, so, this would represent the bonuses or penalties that result from the relative size of anything, then? I suppose it could work. I do think this type should really only have to do with things that are a matter of sheer and actual size, though—if we&#39;re not careful, about anything could be grouped into this one.

    And that&#39;s it, really. Well, that wasn&#39;t too difficult. I think we&#39;re pretty close indeed to a definitive, usable list by now, if I dare say so. Pretty cool. ^_^
    <span style='color:darkgray'>&quot;I like to be passionate and sincere, but I also like to have fun and act like a dork... Geeks unite.&quot;
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    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    All right - the recent patch provided seems to have worked and I can get back on the boards.



    My take on some of these:

    Inherent bonus - the problem with trying to stretch this into fittting with domain rules is that this bonus has some very specific and clearly defined limits, That is a character can have no more tan a +5 inherent bonus. To wrok this differently will, IMO, cause more problems than it is worth by adding a layer of confusion to the existing rules. Now as written so far in Chap 8 this is brought up in relation to blood score (but needs reworking due to the +5 limit per the core rules).

    enhancement bonus - similar logic. This bonus is so intimately tied to magic items that it would probably cause more problems than it is worth.

    profane/sacred bonus - hmm this might work with regard to some realm spells.

    alchemical bonus - I also am having trouble trying to find ways to work this one in. But I&#39;m open. especially since it is so infrequently used.

    Circumstance bonus - an easy fit, pretty much as written, same with insight, luck and morale.

    Racial bonus - has some possibility, but again it is rather limited (mostly applying to the demi-human races). Let&#39;s not eliminate this one, but see what falls into place.

    How about looking towards some new BR specific bonuses? Regency bonus, leadership bonus, bloodline bonus - just some thoughts nothing in particular tied to these.
    Duane Eggert

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    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    I think Danip started an important topic here and we need to spend some time on this.

    Designating types of bonuses for domain actions is a very important game-mechanic that can be embraced and used to place a limit on the amount of bonuses a character can have for domain actions.
    Duane Eggert

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    Senior Member Osprey's Avatar
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    Off the top of my head for naming domain action bonus types:

    Circumstance bonuses would include most unusual bonuses - yes, like weather and forces of nature, but also any number of DM-assigned ad hoc modifiers, such as diplomatic effects and temporary spikes in support or opposition to the regent that go above or below attitude adjustments. If the regent used a Decree action to whip up support for new migration to a frontier province, for example, he might gain a circumstance bonus to Rule that province in the following month.

    Enhancement bonuses should be limited to magic items and maybe realm spell effects. These would need to be spells/items with at month-long/ continuous durations, however, and should probably be limited to specially-designed items. IMC, for example, I created a Sceptre of Rulership that granted a +2 bonus to Administrate-based domain actions. This would be a typical example of an enhancement bonus.

    Insight bonuses should be comparatively rare and difficult to come by, as they are in the rest of the D&D world. Such bonuses on a domain scale are almost inconceivable, save for very powerful mages. Even then, if bonuses to skills are already being counted at 1:5, then most spells that grant insight bonuses to skills can be handled that way.

    Competence bonus: this should, IMO, be the basic bonus type for possessing ranks in the key skill(s) for the domain action type. Having a high level of appropriate skill seems to me a direct benefit of competence in a regent or Lt. The interesting thing about competence bonuses in 3e is that they stack...it has been suggested that more than one skill could grant bonuses to a single domain action, but this would lead to stacking bonuses, rather than taking the best modifier from a non-stacking list. So to keep bonuses to a reasonable level, probably best to keep one key skill per domain action. Also, bonuses from feats like Regent Focus and "Master X" would also fall into this category.

    Morale bonus: an obvious choice for domain attitude modifiers to domain actions. If a DM thinks there should be an some additional effect for very high or low loyalty, he/she can always add a Circumstance bonus to actions.

    Luck: Blessings and curses are the common sources for these - continuous magic items and/or realm spells might provide such bonuses.

    Inherent bonus: leave this one out of the domain level of play, IMO.

    Profane/Sacred: too easily confused with Luck (and a lousy excuse to allow such magics to stack with one another). If there was one use for this, however, it would be any bonuses derived directly from a bloodline ability, unless we are maintaining that bloodline effects are unique and seperate from divine powers. Since bloodlines are fragments of divinity, however, I rather think they should be labeled divine powers, and directly integrated into the existing system. In general, though, I think there are enough bonuses that I hesitate to allow any bloodline abilities granting direct bonuses to domain actions.

    Racial bonuses: alot has been suggested for possible racial bonuses/penalties, especially for the Sidhelien. Might be cool to at least post some suggestions for variant rules on handling non-human domains, especially if they have some balance (ex: the Sidhelien get racial bonuses on source actions but penalties on ruling provinces, perhaps +/-2?).

    Holdings: I think this is a good domain-specific bonus to add, one that stacks with all other bonuses, as the number of holding modifiers can vary depending on the domain action. Just call it a Holding modifier.

    Keep out the combat specific ones like Dodge, Armor, Deflection, etc.

    I believe most of this agrees with the current trends of thought, just didn&#39;t have time to go through and find everything to respond to directly. Hopefully this will serve as a reinforcer. Cheers&#33;

    Osprey

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