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  1. #1

    High level issues in Birthright, a partial solution?

    4. Something I have brought up a bit before - at highest levels, D&D is designed for characters to singlehandedly annihilate armies (or even populaces!), thus making the BRCS system for war units... not the most effective. This doesn't even start including realm magic, but just say... repeated hammering of a place with meteor strikes, cloudkills and fireballs/delayed blast fireballs. Or a 20th level fighter who can mop the floor with 200 3rd level fighters as they kill 2 or 3 a round... and the 3rds can't even hit the 20th level fighter, except with 20s - If even...
    This is a sort of spin off of a previous thread entitled low level syndrome in Birthright. One point that was repeatedly brought up was that high level characters could concievably massacre an entire army unit singlehandedly.

    Now, I figure the BRCS is going off of the SRD. (The links to the design philosophy are dead, so I'm not 100% sure.) But...could we maybe suggest an idea from a new D&D core book that isn't in the SRD? That being the idea of a swarm from the DMG2. Obviously we can't copy the idea directly but at the least it could be a suggestion "Keep in mind that armies as a whole will overwhelm even a 20th level character. To simulate this you might wish to use the swarm rules from the WOTC DMG2." Or even, come up with something similiar but unique.

    For those who don't know, the idea behind a swarm is you take a horde of low level characters. The horde starts with the base attack bonus and hitdice and hit points of the base character type. Now, for every X monster added on (I don't own the DMG2, I've only seen a brief description of this mechanic in a WOTC product), let's say every 10, you add +1 BAB,+1 saves, +1 HD.

    So, if we go with 10, then by the time you reach 200 people, based off even an NPC warrior 1, you'll have something like +20 BAB, +20 saves and say 21 or so HD, so probably an average of 100 or so hps. Every X amount of HPs lost reduces all stats reflected through a negative level-like mechanic.

    This of course reflects the fact that a large amount of creatures will wear down even a much more powerful foe by simple attrition and luck.

    I may be mistaken on this one's origin but I think it is the DMG2. Any thoughts?

  2. #2
    Ehrshegh of Spelling Thelandrin's Avatar
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    I think that that is a really good idea, but of course it would need sound implementation to be used properly.

    Then again of course, you can always be extremely strict on allowing high-level characters in the first place.

  3. #3
    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
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    There is no reason that the mechanics of mobs and swarms cannot be employed. The whole purpose behind d20 is to get people using a common set of rules rather than the old style of having third parties invent a similar but alternate set of rules. What remains protected in the modern gaming age are not rules, but descriptions of rules. If you can describe swarms and mobs, you can do so in this forum or on the wiki.

    The standard mob in Cityscape has a +22 attack, grapples at +34, is an expert grappler, and deals 5d6 in bludgening damage.

    This seems quite fitting.

  4. #4
    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    I updated the design philosophy link (had to do a search since the links were broken in one of the earlier site/server maintenance efforts).

    Here it is for ease of reference:

    http://www.birthright.net/forums/showthread.php?t=2378&highlight=design+philosophy


    The BRCS is using the SRD (because we can't legally directly take information from other books and put it in).

    Nothing, however, prevents anyone from using the mob rules for their game (and I agree they work fairly well for that too) but as per the "legal" issues involved we can't formally use them in the BRCS itself. D20 and OGL/OGC issues - gotta love them and hate them at the same time.
    Duane Eggert

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by irdeggman View Post

    Nothing, however, prevents anyone from using the mob rules for their game (and I agree they work fairly well for that too) but as per the "legal" issues involved we can't formally use them in the BRCS itself. D20 and OGL/OGC issues - gotta love them and hate them at the same time.
    I figured as much. Hopefully some of that new info will go into the SRD. I'm not familiar with the legalities, but could the BRCS make mention of it like I said. Something like "If you own product X by WOTC, there are rules for mobs and swarms that will help with problems of high level characters versus armies."

    As it stands, the official version of the Gorgon should be able to singlehandedly destroy any army. Even if we can use the rules, could we perhaps just say "If for some reason you need to know the RP stats of an army of 200 soldiers, consider them a group that has X hit points, does X amount of damage with +X base attack and if it takes damage it loses X from each of these per X amount of damage." Just sort of come up with something reasonable?

    Or is that too close to using their rules?

  6. #6
    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    Well the other reason for not doing it the way you suggest is that all a player/DM needs to have to use the BRCS is the core 3 books (or SRD) and the BRCS.

    Referencing a non-core book (that is not in the SRD) defeats that purpose by requiring someone to buy more books to play.

    I much prefer a Unearthed Arcana version of Birthright that can have a whole slew of house-rules and other such variantions.

    And as written the mass combat system in the BRCS doe not allow for single handed defeat of an army.

    The stats are designed such that that doesn't work. A character adds to a unit's abilities by giving up his own actions to support it.

    You can zoom in to handle how an individual operates but this is not an individual versus an army.

    Scale is an important issue to maintain here. If going into tremendous detail like what a high level character can do h8imself verrsus the stats for a bunch of low level characters defeats the purpose entirely IMO.
    Last edited by irdeggman; 08-08-2007 at 03:37 PM.
    Duane Eggert

  7. #7
    That makes alot of sense. The only reason I thought about it is because of the other thread I made a semi-quote from. I was honestly going to just say. "I don't care if you are level 20 or 30 or whatever and have the stats to singlehandedly defeat the enemy army, you'd get overwhelmed by 200+ men."

  8. #8
    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
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    Mobs and swarms already appear in d20 OGL materials, such as Celtic Age.

  9. #9
    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kgauck View Post
    Mobs and swarms already appear in d20 OGL materials, such as Celtic Age.

    Celtic Age by Avalanche Press?

    I must have missed the mob rules there.

    Check the Offical Fan Site rules

    http://www.birthright.net/forums/sho...66&postcount=5

    It is pretty specific on who "owns" material posted ehre (basically the BRCS stuff).

    By the way I am friends (well I've known him for about 20+ years through our full time jobs) with one of the "owners" of Avalanche Press and several employees (well recently former employees for a long, long time).

    Celtic Age is 3.0 (and one of my favorite source books) along with Noble Steeds (another Avalanche Press product).
    Duane Eggert

  10. #10
    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
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    I like both Noble Steeds and Celtic Age very much. They are excellent products.

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