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Modiphius > Mutant Chronicles Playtest Discussion (CLOSED)
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Beta 5.0 Discussion

posted Feb 28, 2014 18:04:32 by ChrisBirch
Please post comments based on the 5.0 playtest document here thanks!
[Last edited Feb 10, 2016 00:20:11]
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77 replies
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wraith808 said Feb 28, 2014 19:11:55
Yes! The part I've been waiting on... character creation! Will get something to you as soon as I get a chance to read, but wanted to make sure I'm subscribed to the thread in advance. :)
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ChrisBirch said Mar 01, 2014 00:19:10
There's not a lot on character creation yet but you can create a basic character :-)
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thenifoc said Mar 01, 2014 09:34:29
I have skimmed through the rules a couple of times, so I won't comment on most of them.
The only criticism I have at this time is the conversion of surplus CP inte XP. It has been done before, in Savage World for instance, and it is one of the things about those systems that I most often see criticized. The problem with the rule is that if you don't spend (or aren't forced to spend) your CP/Bennies/Whatever, you start to slide ahead of the expected power curve, causing you tou have less and less need to spend your CP during play, thus saving even more of them. Conversely, the people who are spending their CP in order to boost rolls or do cool shit end up needing to continue spending their CP in order to have a chance to stay at the same effectiveness as the people who never spent theirs.

If, on the other hand, surplus CP are lost at the end of the session, their expenditure is encouraged by the system, rather than, as now, discouraged.
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Tsu said Mar 01, 2014 10:33:19
I second the impressions of the past from thenifoc. The rule is simply not needed and works against cinematic play.

Oh and by the way: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1lwWYkSVMZVT7cMXrn6hUgmT7Zn02Hq8pRZ5JTnFPwXw/edit?usp=sharing

You need to make yourself a copy for your google drive to play around with it :)
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MattiasDavidsson said Mar 01, 2014 12:13:57
I again apologize for my written english, still not my main language. There is still a couple of things I feel is strange and a huge step away from being an Roleplaying game and more being an "Character on the back of a poker-card"-game. I really miss the depth in characters. The numeric values in skills are boringly low, not versitile and flat. The lower the values the easier it is to break the game fast. And I still think that having the attribute stand for 80-90% of your characters actuall Skill-value is the worst design ever. The entire diversity that made each MC character fun, unique and special from 1st and 2nd Edition is gone. All you are now is 8 Attributes and 1-5 Expertice in skills that really does not say much at how good you are. If you'r Streght is low you will forever be suckage at climbing (Athletics) but if you are naturally strong you climb with ease. Wich just is a major design-flaw. Nothing about your inherent strenght says you would be a better climber then the other person, it should come down to skill. If I am slightly weaker then my friend it does not automatically makes me a worse climber. He may be bulkier and stronger, but that mass and strenght could easily be in the way for him as he tries to scale a wall. But since I got a 5 and he got a 10 he will be forever better and there is no way I possibly can even match his Athletics. And that is just absurd. The entire core-mechanic is hindering Roleplay, Character development and diversity in creation.

CORE CONCEPTS
Chronicle Points
1) Chronicle Points should not be allowed in use to recover Light Wounds. This is someting a PC/NPC should do using the proper skill, like First Aid. Wounds simply do not autoheal just because one wants it.

Dark Symmetry Points
1) Activating NPC's. If the creature has the "particulary powerful" ability this ability should be part of the creatures arsenal instead of being "one trick pony" relying on an expoiltable point-system. It halters and hinders Action aswell as Story and Roleplay if you have creatures that are dependant on the formula: PC must fail, add points to this pool in order for GM to use creature ability. Either the Razide can throw a car. Or he can not. Not "he can throw a car if PC critically fails".

SKILL TEST RESOLUTION
Making a Skill Test
The mechanic behind how to resolve sucess or failure, nice touch. Nothing wierd. However. A great strenght with the original MC was the diversity in skills and the posibility that anyone could actually with enough time be good at anything. But you had to work for it. Having Attributes taking over the entire (main portion) of the Skill Test Resolution is simply from a roleplaying point of wiew a bad idea. It will result in generic, copy/paste kind of characters that all will be equally good/bad and the diversity from having skills cuts short of just being a flavour-addon. Since some attributes in an attribute-heavy system will be far more important then others.

Using attributes as a base, a core-value for skills is a good idea, but not letting them take over the importance of the skills entirely. In original MC you could never create a Mysticist from the Brotherhood that where really good at combatskills. He simply did not get the points for it. He was however kickass in the Arts/Magic. With an Attribute trumphs skill system, not only will the Mysticist be kickass in the Arts/Magic, he will also be avarage/okay in using firearms, rocketguns etc.etc.. This creating an unbalanced and unfair norm of equality of all characters.

As in the example:
"Adam’s character is asked to make an Athletics skill test, which uses Adam’s Strength 9. Adam has 1 expertise rank in Athletics which results in a skill TN 10 (9 Strength + 1 Athletics expertise rank). Adam will achieve one success for each d20 he rolls equal to or less than the skill’s TN 10."

A much better version would be:
Adam’s character is asked to make an Athletics skill test, which uses Adam’s Strength 9, that gives him a basevalue of 3 in Athletics (Value/3). Adam has 7 expertise rank in Athletics which results in a skill TN 10 (9/3=3 Strength + 7 Athletics expertise rank). Adam will achieve one success for each d20 he rolls equal to or less than the skill’s TN 10.

Same goes for untrained skills like the one with Acrobatics:
"Adam is asked to make an Acrobatics skill test which uses his character’s Agility. Adam’s PC has Agility 11 but no expertise ranks in Acrobatics. When attempting an Acrobatics skill test, Adam rolls 2d20 and want to roll 11 or less on the dice."

A much better version would be:
Adam is asked to make an Acrobatics skill test which uses his character’s Agility. Adam’s PC has Agility 11 but no expertise ranks in Acrobatics. When attempting an Acrobatics skill test, Adam rolls 2d20 and want to roll 11/3 = 3 or less on the dice."

This will both benefit the system as a whole, since it will give skills a far more important vital role as being actual skills rather then "since I got pretty good attributes I can just ignore all other skills then the 3 I want and be totally badass on these". Second benefit is diversity and something to strive for. Not so good with a handgun? Train it, go to the firing range, go hunt necromutants, use the skill to actually be better at it.

CHARACTER MAKEUP
Starting Atributes
Derived Stats
I do understand the thought behind "if you are bigger and stronger you do more damage", but it is simply not that accurate. Skill with a weapon will determine more the outcome of damage on an object or person then just being big armed or hawk-eyed. Bonus Damage based on (Attribute + Attribute)/2 should be ((Attribute + Attribute)/2 + Skill)/2 to further enhance the feeling of your character being good at something, rather then just being big, sharpeyed or aware.
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MagnusKörberg said Mar 01, 2014 13:34:04
When an attack hits its target, the player should roll a number of d6s listed with the weapon’s
damage rating. When a damage die rolls a 1 or 2, that indicates how much damage that particular
die contributes to the attack. Any damage die result of 3+ is ignored.


What happens to all the dices with 3+ on the rolls? Cant find any mentioning of it anywere. Those dices just "disapear"? ie nothing happens to rolls over 3+ ie. ingored as stated?
[Last edited Mar 01, 2014 13:34:50]
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MattiasDavidsson said Mar 01, 2014 14:06:31
As you said. All rolls on the D6 of 3+ is ignored and not added to damage.

If you got 2+5D6 and you roll 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 then it would result in 5 wounds of damage. (+1 for the 1 and +2 for the 2)

Fixed* :D
[Last edited Mar 01, 2014 16:44:39]
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Quark said Mar 01, 2014 15:01:00
I agree with MattiasDavidsson on the fact that attributes have too much weight, while the expertise rank limited to a maximum of three may lead to very similar can-do-everything characters, or on the contrary discrepencies too large (his example with the climbing is very good).
Maybe reusing the "Base Skill Value" idea from MC 1st ed would be a good idea, while of course limiting the maximum number of expertise (MC 1st ed had on the contrary too much weight on skills).

I have also two remarks:
- The difficulty raiting explanation for shooting a target jumps from D2 "Shooting a static target at mid-range" to D3 "shooting a moving target at long range". What would be the difficulty rating for a static target at long-range?
- The hit location table should be rewarding players for a low dice roll, thus putting head at 1-2 and then Torso at 3-8 would be better imho.

Overall very good job on polishing the rules, and the symmetry pool is very nice now :)
Keep-up with the good work!!
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JaySun said Mar 01, 2014 16:28:31
Hey Guys,

Sorry for being AWOL for such a long time. Too much work, too little time =/. I haven't abandoned the cause, though, and looking over the latest beta ruleset releases I must say it's come a long way and I am very impressed by the current state of the rules.

I have a playtest scheduled for next week, so I'll be able to provide a lot more input near the end of next week, in the meantime, a peve of mine has surfaced, conerning Shotguns:

5m? Seriously?
Shotguns are used for duck hunting for a reason, as well as boar hunting (although that's mostly using slugs). I would recommend to increase the range of shotguns to about 30-40m.

Similar thing with assault rifles: 50m?
Your average Assault rifle is sighted for about 200m combat range, going up to 500m and more effective combat range. I would recommend using the 200m as effective range.

And a third thing I spotted was the "Clear Shot" Talent. A fixed effective range increase of up to 30m creates some truly weird situations, like extending the (current) range of a shotgun from 5m to 35m.

I would recommend changing it to a 10% increase per rank, rather than a flat 10m per rank.

I'll provide you with some more detailed feedback after the playtest, but I just had to get those off my chest.

Cheers,

Jason

@MathiasDavidsson: Actually, in your excemple it ould be 5 wounds: 2 Base, + 1 from the "1" and +2 from the "2" (v05, p.42)
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thenifoc said Mar 01, 2014 18:09:54
I dislike the idea of dividing attributes by 3 before adding expertise. There seem to be no reason to keep the attributes at the level they are if expertise is to be increased. Instead just lower all attributes values, I would halve them, not divide by three, but that might be me, if you are going for a cinematic feel making characters that have a general competence is not a flaw IMO. As I said, halve the attributes and increase the ceiling for Expertise to compensate, all you loose is some granularity when it comes to calculating derived attributes, but I can live with that.
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Quark said Mar 02, 2014 02:31:13
I also think dividing by three is too much, but reusing the "Base Skill Value" calculation from MC 1st ed could be a good idea.
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JoshuaKlug said Mar 02, 2014 06:59:13
I agree with Quark.

I can easily see myself altering the attribute/skills to be more in line with the 1st edition concept for my campaigns. I like the expertise and focus mechanic, as well as the general and advanced skills, but I do agree that too much weight is being placed on the attributes for skill values. In addition, the skills are too general/generic. I know my players, and maybe therein lies the flaw, but I'm going to have half of my guys max out their combat skills ignoring everything else. The other half will all take a little bit of everything, but they're going to put them in the same skills as each other. Diversification will suffer in my group(at least until we get to use the lifepath generation).

I'm also already contemplating a specialization system for this rules-set. Must have 1 expertise rank in a skill, and then specialize in a specific use of that skill. The specialization will cost half to increase, but once the specialization is more than 2 points higher than the skill it's based on, all non-specialized uses of that skill have its difficulty increased by 1 step. Examples of specialization: Sciences - Chemistry, Demolitions, Computers. Thievery - Security (electronic), Security (mechanical), Pick Pockets, Mimic, Disguise.

I'm prone to enjoying robust, skill-based systems rather than attribute-based systems (WEG D6 > D&D for example). I think my main group added about 20 potential skills for characters to choose from under the 1st edition MC. That said, I'll finally have my first opportunity to playtest, with other people, this coming Saturday, and will be able to stop theorizing and report actual findings.
[Last edited Mar 02, 2014 07:00:07]
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thenifoc said Mar 02, 2014 08:48:37
@Joshua: If your players just care about combat and nothing else, you can't really fault the game for that, the only effect of making more combat skills is that they will put more of their points into combat skills. If you feel that they are putting an inordinate amount of focus on combat; talk to them!!

@Everyone: I still don't see the point in having (starting) attributes in the 5-10 range and then halving them for everything, just halve the range of attributes so your attributes are in the 2-5 range and be done with it. The few times you need to roll purely an attribute roll, double or even add two rolls together. The only point in having larger attributes is granularity, which you loose anyway as soon as you start using them for anything.
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JoshuaKlug said Mar 02, 2014 14:36:38
@thenifoc I agree that the half of my guys that focus entirely on combat is not the system's fault, I just know that until the lifepath generation (assuming it affects skill point placement), that's what they're going to do. To combat that, I'm probably going to have pre-mades ready for them, and then let them craft their own guys after they've experienced the system.

I just happen to do a lot of theory crafting with each new game I play. It helps me to find ways that my guys will use/abuse a set of rules, but until I actually get to sit down and play, that's all it is, theory. :)
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MattiasDavidsson said Mar 02, 2014 17:04:35
With these rules I just feel that it is a huge step back from what defines roleplaying and more enters the boardgame area.

The complexity in creating an character in both 1st and 2nd Ed of the rules was its strenghts.

The new combat rules are way better, and as it is for now I will use the new combat rules in combination with the old character and skill rules

:-)

Edit typos
[Last edited Mar 02, 2014 18:10:22]
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