Heroes of the Moonshaes

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Free gouge training for humans and halflings?
I'd really wish they'd stop having racial prerequisites for themes.  Racial restrictions are entirely a fluff thing, they should not be so firmly established in the rules to the point where they don't show up when you're browsing themes in the Character Builder.

What if I'm using the Callidyrr Dragoon (enough double letters? really) in a setting that...doesn't have Callidyrr?  The human or halfing restriction now no longer matters, but my players won't know it exists unless I specifically tell them or they get lucky with race choices.

Please, please stop putting in racial prerequisites for themes.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
Free gouge training for humans and halflings?


Gouges aren't military weapons, which is what I assume the writers meant when they said "martial"
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
Free gouge training for humans and halflings?


Gouges aren't military weapons, which is what I assume the writers meant when they said "martial"


Yeah, I was just re-reading that benefit, and was like: "OK, what's the difference between a martial and a primal weapon then?"
Other them that, the new themes seemed underpowered.

A case can be made for Sarifal on mini-nova and flare builds of multi-hitting aspect.
Also Light of Sarifal is a descent daily, but only for defenders.
(Edit: O_o Battleminds at lvl 13+ will use both =D) (Oh and it seems that this vulnerability stacks, because its "vulnerability: Your attacks that deals "insert element here" and its different them "vulnerability: Fire" isnt it? Im not sure if it works, but if it doesnt its really not that good, but if it does its one of the best for flares and mini-novas.)


Callidyrr Dragoon is another "gain free mounted combat and no useful way to use it".
All powers are weak, and the diplomacy as heal in range 5 is a interesting feature, but not at lvl 10.


One of them have a very specific group fo builds that can use it, and the other is totally useless.
Callidyrr Dragoon is another "gain free mounted combat and no useful way to use it".
All powers are weak, and the diplomacy as heal in range 5 is a interesting feature, but not at lvl 10.



Yet more ways for warlords to shout people better!
"I am the seeker, I am the stalker, I am the walrus"
I'd really wish they'd stop having racial prerequisites for themes.  Racial restrictions are entirely a fluff thing, they should not be so firmly established in the rules to the point where they don't show up when you're browsing themes in the Character Builder.

Especially when the article begins with examples of total refluffs of existing themes. I was really happy to see that they were encouraging that as a possibility, and then they go and put arbitrary restrictions on themes in the same article.

Also, I'm upset one of the themes didn't give pixies a badass squirrel mount as pictured on the first page. What a tease.
Enjoy your Mounted Combat Feat*!

*Mount sold separately.



The Sarifal Warden level 6 utility is relatively nice on its own, but I'm not sure I would want to take the entire theme just for that.

Dragoon Summons is completely underwhelming for a daily.  It's another meat shield I don't have to care about raising if it dies, who can redirect 1 attack/encounter from someone important.  The aura is something Feywild Beast-Tamers have been doing since... level 1.

Bargle wrote:
This is CharOp. We not only assume block-of-tofu monsters, but also block-of-tofu DMs.
 

Zelink wrote:
You're already refluffing, why not refluff to something that doesn't suck?
Enjoy your Mounted Combat Feat*!

*Mount sold separately.



The Sarifal Warden level 6 utility is relatively nice on its own, but I'm not sure I would want to take the entire theme just for that.

Dragoon Summons is completely underwhelming for a daily.  It's another meat shield I don't have to care about raising if it dies, who can redirect 1 attack/encounter from someone important.  The aura is something Feywild Beast-Tamers have been doing since... level 1.



I think Sarifal Warden's starting feature is where it shines. In an optimized party, it's going to be sick. For instance, wasn't there a party optimization thread on this forum awhile back for 'the thunderlords' or something like that? This + a party that deals nothing but that = hooray we're saved!
You're not reading it closely enough, it doesn't work that way. The vulnerability is only to your attacks, it doesn't help your allies. (Still a major benefit to multiattackers, but they didn't exactly need the help.)



Pah! Alright... still, good for yourself then. I thought this was a more leaderly ability. Sorcerers should like it, then, I suppose.
Also, I'm upset one of the themes didn't give pixies a badass squirrel mount as pictured on the first page. What a tease.



What is there that lets you ride a creature of your size?
Overall I was throughly underwhelmed at these new themes, espescially the feywarden. The Dragoon could see use by Cavaliers, and their level 10 Summon looks pretty decent.

Still, couldn't Wizards have given us something better on Thanksgiving? (for those of us in the US) 
It's not a matter of Right vs. Left, it's a matter of right vs. wrong My Charop Works Who Am I Really? The Theme Handbook I'm an
D&D Home Page - What Class Are You? - Build A Character - D&D Compendium
Designer here. I'll take the heat for the article. You can lay it at my feet, but my intent was first to write for the Forgotten Realms, and background of the Moonshae Isles. When I design broad game-system articles, you can expect it won't be as restrictive. In the Realms, however, I could not in good conscious have made it a free-for-all. It's a rough balance between story and progressive tactical options. In the Realms, I always lean towards the first.
Matt James Freelance Game Designer Loremaster.org

Follow me on Twitter!
I'm disappointed that we get another mount-oriented theme with no free mount
I'm disappointed that we get another mount-oriented theme with no free mount



This. Even if it's as simple as a Warhorse or something. Mounts aren't gamebreaking, since anyone can get one (either by class means, or purchasing one, should they feel the need to spend the gp)
RIP George! 4-21-11 RIP Abie! 1-2-13
Funny Forum Quotes
[quote author=82733368 post=532127449]
58115148 wrote:
"You notice a large piece of mold clinging to your toothbrush. What do you do?" "I cast Fireball." "I run like hell!
63797881 wrote:
The standard d4 is somewhat (SOMEWHAT) rounded on the top, the older models are even flat. The Lego is shaped in such a way that in an emergency, you can use one as a makeshift surgical knife.
147742801 wrote:
57457938 wrote:
My wife asked me if her pants made her look fat. What do you think I said?
Wife: Do these pants make me look fat? RedSiegfried: I just killed a bunch of orc women and children.
63797881 wrote:
82733368 wrote:
28.) Making a "Drunken Master" style character (Monk or otherwise) does not require my character to be completely shitfaced, no matter what the name (and fun interpretation) implies.
29.) Making a "Drunken Master" style character does not require ME to be completely tanked, no matter how "in-character" I want to be..
While I want to agree, the logic here is a bit off.

If mounts are so easy to get, why do you need your theme to give you one?  Just buy it.

Untying mounts from themes lets them work with any mount, so you're not stuck with that Warhorse your entire career.  I think in the end, this is the best way to go.  Unless of course the theme gave some awesome mount that was way better than any existing ones, which is I think a little closer to what you folks really want.
While I want to agree, the logic here is a bit off.

If mounts are so easy to get, why do you need your theme to give you one?  Just buy it.

Untying mounts from themes lets them work with any mount, so you're not stuck with that Warhorse your entire career.  I think in the end, this is the best way to go.  Unless of course the theme gave some awesome mount that was way better than any existing ones, which is I think a little closer to what you folks really want.



Well the thing is that mounts that you buy don't usually scale. I think there's a figurine that gives you a horse with scaling HP/defenses, but other than that you need to upgrade your mount every few levels.

It would be nice to have a built-in mount with scaling HP/defenses so that you don't have to keep upgrading it yourself.

It allows you to create more attachment between your character and his/her mount. It's the same idea as the Fey Beast Tamer theme, the Sentinel, or the Beastmaster Ranger.
While I want to agree, the logic here is a bit off.

If mounts are so easy to get, why do you need your theme to give you one?  Just buy it.

Untying mounts from themes lets them work with any mount, so you're not stuck with that Warhorse your entire career.  I think in the end, this is the best way to go.  Unless of course the theme gave some awesome mount that was way better than any existing ones, which is I think a little closer to what you folks really want.



Well the thing is that mounts that you buy don't usually scale. I think there's a figurine that gives you a horse with scaling HP/defenses, but other than that you need to upgrade your mount every few levels.

It would be nice to have a built-in mount with scaling HP/defenses so that you don't have to keep upgrading it yourself.

It allows you to create more attachment between your character and his/her mount. It's the same idea as the Fey Beast Tamer theme, the Sentinel, or the Beastmaster Ranger.



This. While we don't need a theme to provide us a mount (or selection of mount choices), we would however like a theme to do so. Buying one is always an option, as I mentioned, but some of us would rather spend our gp elsewhere.

I don't want a super-fantastic theme-provided-mount, but at least providing us with some sort of mont would be a step in the right direction.

RIP George! 4-21-11 RIP Abie! 1-2-13
Funny Forum Quotes
[quote author=82733368 post=532127449]
58115148 wrote:
"You notice a large piece of mold clinging to your toothbrush. What do you do?" "I cast Fireball." "I run like hell!
63797881 wrote:
The standard d4 is somewhat (SOMEWHAT) rounded on the top, the older models are even flat. The Lego is shaped in such a way that in an emergency, you can use one as a makeshift surgical knife.
147742801 wrote:
57457938 wrote:
My wife asked me if her pants made her look fat. What do you think I said?
Wife: Do these pants make me look fat? RedSiegfried: I just killed a bunch of orc women and children.
63797881 wrote:
82733368 wrote:
28.) Making a "Drunken Master" style character (Monk or otherwise) does not require my character to be completely shitfaced, no matter what the name (and fun interpretation) implies.
29.) Making a "Drunken Master" style character does not require ME to be completely tanked, no matter how "in-character" I want to be..
The mounts that exists for gold have specific levels, are problematic because they are easy to kill, and hard to get back.

Thats why a scaling mount that can be "ressed" by expending healing surge, like the fey beast companion, would enable alot of builds to be more reliable.
 
Also, I'm upset one of the themes didn't give pixies a badass squirrel mount as pictured on the first page. What a tease.



+100
Since we're putting up requests, how about a theme that gives a melee basic attack that uses the primary stat for attack & damage? Battleminds and swordmages would go nuts over that one.
I was trying to fit mechanics into fluff is a bad excuse for shoddy sub par mechanics that has been used far too often in the last year and a half.
I was trying to fit mechanics into fluff is a bad excuse for shoddy sub par mechanics that has been used far too often in the last year and a half.



Ouch. That one hurt. Which part falls into shoddy sub par mechanics? What is the critera we're working with here, Lady_Auralia?
Matt James Freelance Game Designer Loremaster.org

Follow me on Twitter!
Designer here. I'll take the heat for the article. You can lay it at my feet, but my intent was first to write for the Forgotten Realms, and background of the Moonshae Isles. When I design broad game-system articles, you can expect it won't be as restrictive. In the Realms, however, I could not in good conscious have made it a free-for-all. It's a rough balance between story and progressive tactical options. In the Realms, I always lean towards the first.



Well, while you're here: the Callidyrr Dragoon's starting feature reads "You gain the Mounted Combat feat (Player’s Handbook). In addition, you gain proficiency with one martial melee weapon of your choice." 

What do you mean by martial melee weapon? As far as I know, martial is a power source, not a weapon type.
Designer here. I'll take the heat for the article. You can lay it at my feet, but my intent was first to write for the Forgotten Realms, and background of the Moonshae Isles. When I design broad game-system articles, you can expect it won't be as restrictive. In the Realms, however, I could not in good conscious have made it a free-for-all. It's a rough balance between story and progressive tactical options. In the Realms, I always lean towards the first.



Well, while you're here: the Callidyrr Dragoon's starting feature reads "You gain the Mounted Combat feat (Player’s Handbook). In addition, you gain proficiency with one martial melee weapon of your choice." 

What do you mean by martial melee weapon? As far as I know, martial is a power source, not a weapon type.



It should say Military

As for the other, why is the Mounted Combat free Feat raising eyebrows (I saw it earlier in the thread)?
Matt James Freelance Game Designer Loremaster.org

Follow me on Twitter!
Designer here. I'll take the heat for the article. You can lay it at my feet, but my intent was first to write for the Forgotten Realms, and background of the Moonshae Isles. When I design broad game-system articles, you can expect it won't be as restrictive. In the Realms, however, I could not in good conscious have made it a free-for-all. It's a rough balance between story and progressive tactical options. In the Realms, I always lean towards the first.


I can't help but agree with this point. Character themes aren't just extensive feats*; they're themes, and themes are intrinsically designed with a strong story element. Sometimes that's going to neccesitate a racial or cultural application in the world the theme is tied to. If you want to use the theme outside of the Realms for your own campaign, it's quite possible that race won't matter. So go nuts! If you've got a culture of people "adopted" by the fey, then go ahead and make people from that region, of any race, qualify for the Sarifal Feywarden theme. There, it may fit. In the Moonshaes, not really.

It's easy enough to just make all characters qualify for all character themes, but I think you'd lose a lot of their flavor. Which woudl be a shame.

* Whereas feats are meant to be more numerous and multi-directional. Yet even many feats have a rcial requirement. Shouldn't they? Isn't not fair that a dwarf can't choose the Enlarged Dragon Breath feat?

Jeff LaSala / freelancer jefflasala.com

Wizards of the Coast:

The Darkwood Mask (The Inquisitives, Eberron)

DDI ("History Check: The Tarrasque," "History Check: Corellon and Gruumsh," "D&D Love Stories," "Faith & Heresy," etc.)

 

Blindsided Books:

Foreshadows: The Ghosts of Zero

 

As for the other, why is the Mounted Combat free Feat raising eyebrows (I saw it earlier in the thread)?



Read some of the earlier posts in this thread. Satanicway summarizes it pretty well: 

The mounts that exists for gold have specific levels, are problematic because they are easy to kill, and hard to get back.

Thats why a scaling mount that can be "ressed" by expending healing surge, like the fey beast companion, would enable alot of builds to be more reliable.
 



So they're expensive, easy to kill and hard to get back. Not to mention that most mounts just don't have very good attacks compared to PCs of the same level, so the chances you'll even benefit from the Mounted Combat feat (barring the prerequisite for a few niche feats like Spirited Rider) are pretty small. 
Designer here. I'll take the heat for the article. You can lay it at my feet, but my intent was first to write for the Forgotten Realms, and background of the Moonshae Isles. When I design broad game-system articles, you can expect it won't be as restrictive. In the Realms, however, I could not in good conscious have made it a free-for-all. It's a rough balance between story and progressive tactical options. In the Realms, I always lean towards the first.



Well, while you're here: the Callidyrr Dragoon's starting feature reads "You gain the Mounted Combat feat (Player’s Handbook). In addition, you gain proficiency with one martial melee weapon of your choice." 

What do you mean by martial melee weapon? As far as I know, martial is a power source, not a weapon type.



It should say Military

As for the other, why is the Mounted Combat free Feat raising eyebrows (I saw it earlier in the thread)?


In and of itself, it's not a huge problem.  It's just that we were hoping for much more from this month.

Plus, Mounted Combat isn't much use since the Mounted Combat rules were revised.  It doesn't really do anything at all if you don't want your mount to attack, which most CharOppers don't, because mount attacks, as a rule, scale TERRIBLY.

What we've been hoping against hope for for months now is some game element other than Cavalier granting a freely-accessible mount of some description which functions in much the same manner as the Sentinel or Fey Beast Tamer companions with respect to HP, defence, damage and attack scaling.

But, we have been frustrated at every turn, and each turn of frustration eats more flavour design space which could have been so much better mechanically.  It's hugely frustrating.  And some CharOppers are not known for their tact.
Harrying your Prey, the Easy Way: A Hunter's Handbook - the first of what will hopefully be many CharOp efforts on my part. The Blinker - teleport everywhere. An Eladrin Knight/Eldritch Knight. CB != rules source.
I was trying to fit mechanics into fluff is a bad excuse for shoddy sub par mechanics that has been used far too often in the last year and a half.

I know several players who consistently pick things based on fluff over mechanical dominance.  They aren't a part of the CharOp crowd, but they deserve to get material they like as well.  At any rate, when a writer shows up to get feedback, blatant insults probably aren't a productive way to communicate what you like to see.

Which brings me to my feedback.  Small-seized squirrel mounts, Matt James. Possibly with cute riding helmets like in the picture. Just think about it for next time.
Just like to say good on you, Matt for stepping up to answer questions/concerns.

Honestly, if more designers were more engaged with CharOp, more worthwhile material, which was more useful and balanced mechanically, would show up.

This forum is a resource that could be used to great effect.
Which brings me to my feedback.  Small-seized squirrel mounts, Matt James. Possibly with cute riding helmets like in the picture. Just think about it for next time.


Oh, if only the authors always got to see the accompanying art before their articles were finished. We'd have a lot of slightly different content. Laughing

Jeff LaSala / freelancer jefflasala.com

Wizards of the Coast:

The Darkwood Mask (The Inquisitives, Eberron)

DDI ("History Check: The Tarrasque," "History Check: Corellon and Gruumsh," "D&D Love Stories," "Faith & Heresy," etc.)

 

Blindsided Books:

Foreshadows: The Ghosts of Zero

 

What we've been hoping against hope for for months now is some game element other than Cavalier granting a freely-accessible mount of some description which functions in much the same manner as the Sentinel or Fey Beast Tamer companions with respect to HP, defence, damage and attack scaling.

Perhaps I'm not as frustrated due to the fact that I've been cranking out several halfling, gnome, and pixie builds that simply ride their Fey Beast Companion (or their thrall from the Thrallherd PP). The stats are already better than you could hope for on a mount. All we really need is a way for medium races to ride a medium creature, like Beast Rider but for everyone. Large mounts are a pain to deal with on the battlemat anyway.

Familiar Mount can be fun as well. I realize that these options are still quite restricted, but the available outlets are a little more broad than just "be a Cavalier."

That being said, Call Celestial Steed was hugely popular when it came out, before being changed to Cavalier-only.  It would be nice to see a similar option open to everyone.
I was trying to fit mechanics into fluff is a bad excuse for shoddy sub par mechanics that has been used far too often in the last year and a half.

I know several players who consistently pick things based on fluff over mechanical dominance.  They aren't a part of the CharOp crowd, but they deserve to get material they like as well.  At any rate, when a writer shows up to get feedback, blatant insults probably aren't a productive way to communicate what you like to see.

Which brings me to my feedback.  Small-seized squirrel mounts, Matt James. Possibly with cute riding helmets like in the picture. Just think about it for next time.




The fluff would still be there without the unneccisary restrictions though.  That is something that really irritates a lot of people.  Also, themes are more akin to classes than feats.  Classes are open to everyone, even the races who's stats don't line up perfectly.  If you can have a dwarven rogue or wizard, why should there be restrictions on any of the themes?

And I would like to add my voice into the 'we need a free scaling mount theme'.  This was yet ANOTHER theme that could have filled that role, but sadly, 'creative design for fluff reasons' means  bad mechanics and choices for the vast majority of a player's characters.

Not trying to be harsh on the writer, but if more of the people submitting articles would keep in mind that flavor does not have to restrict mechanics, we'd all have better material, and writers would have less people complaining about their work. 
...but sadly, 'creative design for fluff reasons' means  bad mechanics and choices for the vast majority of a player's characters. 





See, this is where I'm trying to root down to. Where are the bad mechanics? Is it because it is not an obvious choice? Is it because it is not a better choice than what has come before? When I designed the content in this article, it was not to fill a void that CharOp precieved. It was to design content that best fit the flavor of the Moonshae Isles while giving some different options for characters to choose. 

As for the Small-sized squirrel mounts; had I known it was going to be in the art, I would have jumped all over it! That sounds just plain bad-*** Cool

My Pixie Berserker would love to have one. So, maybe I can see what can be done. Then, if and when it comes out, you guys can feel satisfaction knowing you, in some part, were responsible for its creation
Matt James Freelance Game Designer Loremaster.org

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Matt:

The complaint, usually, is that the mechanical restriction forces houseruling even in non-default settings. For example, using the themes in Dark Sun, you still need to be from the same races etc, even though the entire setting has changed.

If the restrictions were specifically laid out in the fluff, but not "hard coded" you could discourage people from playing them in FR, while allowing for "Drizzt" one of a kind cases with a good backstory, and allowing homebrewed settings and Dark Sun games, etc, from having to house rule your rules restriction away.

Its similar to how we felt about Satyrs everywhere being forced into being male, and requiring house rules to fix what is essentially fluff.
So it's related to the inconvience of the current character builder and having to deal with houserules? 
Matt James Freelance Game Designer Loremaster.org

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I don't see the big deal to be honest. Granted, I would love for all themes to be restriction-free. But I don't think it's a big deal that some aren't. If a theme is trying to capture a particular culture that only exists among a certain tribe of a certain race, so be it. If a theme is trying to capture a holy order dedicated to protecting a particular monarch of a particular race that only accepts memebers of said race, so be it.

Here on this board we look at new mechanics as an addition to our toolbox, so we want everything open to everyone. But it doesn't always have to be.
Its not a big deal. Certainly it won't fix world hunger, or generate world peace.

And yeah, Matt, house ruling is a mess with the character builder, because building characters is a mess using the old pen and paper. A lot of DM's simply won't do it, also, and will just ban the themes from the campaign entirely.
but sadly, 'creative design for fluff reasons' means  bad mechanics and choices 

I'll disagree with that as stated.

There is no reason the designers can't do creative design for fluff reasons, and also look at the results and make sure all the mechanics are covered and as widely available as they ought to be.

Granted, some part of that often gets left out...

"The world does not work the way you have been taught it does. We are not real as such; we exist within The Story. Unfortunately for you, you have inherited a condition from your mother known as Primary Protagonist Syndrome, which means The Story is interested in you. It will find you, and if you are not ready for the narrative strands it will throw at you..." - from Footloose
...but sadly, 'creative design for fluff reasons' means  bad mechanics and choices for the vast majority of a player's characters. 





See, this is where I'm trying to root down to. Where are the bad mechanics? Is it because it is not an obvious choice? Is it because it is not a better choice than what has come before? When I designed the content in this article, it was not to fill a void that CharOp precieved. It was to design content that best fit the flavor of the Moonshae Isles while giving some different options for characters to choose. 

As for the Small-sized squirrel mounts; had I known it was going to be in the art, I would have jumped all over it! That sounds just plain bad-***

My Pixie Berserker would love to have one. So, maybe I can see what can be done. Then, if and when it comes out, you guys can feel satisfaction knowing you, in some part, were responsible for its creation




The Bad mechanics from what i've seen of it so far is the restriction (EDIT: Aside from the no scaling mount).  There is no crunch reason for it, there is no situation where a character of another race that fits that fluff, but is not of  the right race would be completely broken making that choice.  The restriction is not a nessicary limiting factor because of the power of the theme, it is only there to fulfil the fluffiness of 'this is only for this one race, in this one setting, in this one area, who do this one thing.'  Its like offering anyone free money, but only if you live at my house, in my state, and have my name...   (I know, making examples is poor forum protocal, but it totally fits.)

And to the above, you have to take the quote in the full context.  I said that it would be nice if that had happened, but sadly it didn't.