Low level game balance

zelkein

New Member
Shattered Core Backer
#1
Hi^^

I've passed hours making my character for our test run, background and everything and tested somme battles with my friends. 1v1 1v1v1, 3v1, 3v3 at starting xp strength.

I have some comments:

We tried player vs player and player vs monsters.

First of all, I know the problem is corrected by itself when you have 2-3 games done, but for my first playtest I decided to make a Caster with 4 intel et 3 willpower. I've put 3 levels in Arkanaа2 in primaltheurgy and some skills on the side.

1v1: really long and boring battle, not enough damage from either the monster or myself. It's even worse when you do 1player vs 1player because the caster does nothing to a DR5 and the fighter/gunner keeps getting blinded. you're lucky if you land a hit and if you land a hit you're lucky if you do damage. I was fighting against a gunner with only a revolver.

1v1v1: Same thing, unless two person focus on one, and then you end up 1v1 and it's really long.аWe had a caster a gunner and a fighter.

3v1: Okay battle, but then again still long if your characters are not purely built for damage. The only fast way we had to kill the ennemy was to melt his armor down (me), blind him (me) and then we could do some decent damage. Which is pretty much the way I think you designed the game to be played. Debuffs, CCs, buffs, tactics!

3v3: Too long there again too much HP for the damage we did.

I know that 2-3 sessions later we get enough skills and spells to manage a good fight, or even at first level if I let go of intel and arkana to take more lvls in my spell damages.

But here what I think: Spell should have a bonus to damage equal to a stat like the gunners and warriors do (which is badly indicated by the way, should be indicated in the stat description or written as a +str in the weapon list damage section) or take the arkana lvl as bonus damage (which would be equivalent to the range weapon ballistic damage bonus for ranged attacks). 5 rolls of lvl 1 spell would be devastating to a lowly armored target and one roll of lvl 5 spell to a heavy armored target.)

There low level casters could do some damage to low level monsters (1d6+3 or 2d6+3 would work on monsters of 3-5 DR when 1d6 damages does nothingаmost of the time and 2d6 is barely ok).

This isn't really a problem for well built fighter/gunner, mostly for casters.

I think we shouldn't roll a so high % of our starting HP, our tank had 31 HP with 4 toughness (bad rolls) and The caster had 42 (good rolls) with 2 toughness.

Either toughness gives more HP or change the starting HP rule to 30 HP + 2*Toughness + 1D10.

I hope I've said constructive comments. Thank you! (still love the system and the "world" you guys created)
 

Konrad

Administrator
Staff member
INDE Staff
#2
Thanks Zelkein! We've actually discussed the issues with health previously and we're definitely going to look into it. We definitely appreciate you giving us your feedback, though, that's why the playtest is out there.
 

Lithairian

Administrator
Staff member
INDE Staff
#3
Zelkein,
I was curious as to what monsters your characters went up against? Were looking into the monsters health and depending on the monsters you were up against makes the difference. Thanks for your feedback!
 

zelkein

New Member
Shattered Core Backer
#4
Hi,

in the 3v3 we were up against one grunt, one hardened and one cultist. Our group was, gunner (with revolver), samurai (with katana), and caster (lvl 2 primal).

The caster was doing an average of 7 damage per level 2 spell (because level one does sweet nothing) and they have minimum 3 DR (6 for the hardened). So The caster could not harm the hardened unless he uses acid on armor, but then again 2/3 of his spells had to be Damageless spells to be usefull. and barely did damage on the 1/3 of his spells when damaging.а

The samurai and the gunner could harm the two non-hardened creatures doing 10 damage on average (minus DR = 7) so they could focus on one target and kill it in 3 to 5 rounds (with the dodges and blocks), then 3 to 5 other rounds for the second target and considering the 3 could focus on the last one at once about 3 to 5 rounds on the toughest one.

Surely We could redo our characters stats now that we know that damage is really low on 110xp characters and beat those monsters faster, but I'm just talking about what we did and we normally play characters with nice background and non-combat skills so we end up with less firepower.

Or I could always give 150-200 starting xp to correct the problem on character creation since the DM decides.

The problem is not big, we just happenned to have really long fights we weren't used to while playing, shadowrun/DnD 3.5/4.0/5.0.

I hope this helps^^
 

Lithairian

Administrator
Staff member
INDE Staff
#5
Zelkein,

Your feedback on this matter is very helpful. Our monsters have gone through many changes and to have someone say that the monsters health is the biggest concern is good in my book, as I was a primary for the monster development process. I'm going to let you in on a secret, most of the monsters are stat'ed out for session 2 combat, so that might be an issue for your players coming fresh out of creation. since every GM is different I can see with your play through and possibly other play through's that coming up against these monsters right off the bat might bring forth long, drawn out combat, and who wants that? The team will work on this issue on tonight's Dev work and we should (in theory) have a solution to this monster problem.(see what i did there? :D)
 

zelkein

New Member
Shattered Core Backer
#6
Hahaha,

well one thing is sure it that the DM could adjust the HP proportionnaly with the average group XP.

Like 20HP + 1/10th of average xp. So 31HP at start 40HP at 200xp 60HP at 500xp and so on.

(Not sure about high level balance or the 1/10th thing)

Since each build is different, even if a hardened has 40HP and the cultist has 40HP, it will still be easier to kill the cultist because of the DR and probably lower dodge.

Just an idea
 

bear

Grunt
Shattered Core Backer
#7
Massive long fights and endless slogs of just trying to whittle down monsters was the thing that killed DnD4e for me. Quick battles and decisive battles (such as Shadowrun or Iron Kingdoms) always keep the flow and pace of combat pretty brief allowing for much more actual roleplay in my eyes. Shattered strikes me as more of a deathly, gritty level of death, much like Iron Kingdoms.

Fights lasting over say.... six rounds would probably be a bit too drawn out unless you were in End-Boss-Month.
 

Lithairian

Administrator
Staff member
INDE Staff
#8
Alright Zelkein,

We got a fix for you. have your team of 3 go up against 3 Chaos Eater grunts and have their health set as 26, everything else the same. If at all possible, could you post the rolls for your players and monsters? We hope to make monster combat quick and fun for grunts and some hardened, but boss fights with lords and others as BEAR said, should be the long combat.
 
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