Martial vs Magic

Ok we have had a nice long argument debate on what is wrong with the Martial vs Magic balance. We all agree something is wrong, and most people would agree that magic is more powerful in some way or another. Whether it be flexibility, power, or what not. What we seem to disagree on is how to fix the problem. Some people call for decreasing magic power, other only want to modify magic power or its spells, still others talk about boosting martial power. I find a fourth option appealing. Modify Martial power.


I propose a system of martial stances and maneuvers similar to the Book of Nine Swords, but less magical in nature.



There are a series of Disciplines to follow. Within each Discipline there are a series of stances. Each stance allows certain maneuvers.


Disciplines: Think of them like schools of martial arts. A fighter would train in a specific type, and at later levels can branch out and learn another schools. Like how a Kung Fu student knows Kung Fu but does not know Karate, but later he can go and learn Karate too.


Stances: This is the specific balance and footwork currently being used by the fighter. As he gains levels he gets more stances within his Discipline. At later levels when he gain access to more Discipline he can also choose stances from those Disciplines. To change what stance you are currently in takes 1 standard action.


Maneuvers: Depending which Stance you are in you have access to certain maneuvers. To learn a Maneuver there are two prerequisites. First you must have access to the Stance which the maneuver is under. Second you must be a high enough level. You can use a maneuver as often as you want so long as you are in the correct stance.



So how does this work? Starting at level 1 a player chooses a Discipline. This is the school of combat that he has trained in, like Kung Fu or Karate. Each Discipline has a number of stances in it, at level 1 a player gets 1 stance. As a character gains levels they train and learn more within their discipline and they get more stances (every 2 to 3 levels). At some point they become a good enough combatant that they can learn more than one Discipline. At this point (around level 7) they get a second discipline, and can choose to learn stances from that Discipline in addition to their original Discipline.




I have created a few example Disciplines, Stances, and Maneuvers. I have not designed what specific maneuvers do, but each stance has a general category of what type of maneuvers would be in it. As many will probably point out this is like Tomb of Battle: Book of Nine Swords, that is where I drew my inspiration from. However these stances are more mundane focused and less pseudo-magical, no flaming swords just because I will them.


Discipline: Animal
Description: Strength of a bear, speed of a snake. Draws inspiration from animals and how they attack.
[Spoiler Animal Stances]Stance of the Snake: Maneuvers focus on quick strikes and give bonuses to hit.

Stance of the Bear: Maneuvers give bonuses to grapple and bull rush.

Stance of the Lion: Maneuvers give you, and later your allies, moral bonuses to saves, attacks, and defense. Other maneuvers demoralize foes.

Stance of the Mouse: Maneuvers focus on stealth and give bonuses if the foe is caught unaware.

Stance of the Tiger: Maneuvers focus on charging in quickly and overwhelming your foe before they have a chance to react.[/spoiler]


Discipline: Elemental
Description: Nothing is as terrifying as mother nature. Takes inspiration from the elements of mother nature.
[spoiler Elemental stances]Stance of the Wind: Maneuvers focus on hitting quickly and dodging, but the strikes lack power.

Stance of the Rain: Maneuvers focus on multiple unrelenting strikes that never allow your opponent to come off of the defensive. Only works with piercing weapons.

Stance of the Volcano: Maneuvers focus on single strikes, each strike is very powerful. No bonuses to hit though.

Stance of the Earth: Maneuvers focus on good solid hits and holding you ground against charging foe.

Stance of the Sun: Maneuvers focus on providing inspiration to allies and striking fear into enemies.[/spoiler]


Discipline: Dancing Sword
Description: Dance like a butterfly sting like a bee. All of these maneuvers require that you keep moving to maintain the stance but you will find that not only do you hit often, you are also hard to hit. Each of these stances is actually a specially designed battle dance.
[spoiler Dances of the Sword]Dance of the Blade: Maneuvers give multiple strikes, must move at least 5 feet each turn to maintain the stance.

Dance of the Falling Leaf: Maneuvers give large bonuses to dodge and attack, but damage suffers as a result. Must move at least 15 feet each turn, and in a non-straight line.

Dance of the Bee: Maneuvers are focused on wielding two light weapons, each maneuver gives multiple strikes with each weapon. Must move at least 5 feet each turn.

Dance of the Cherry Blossom: Maneuvers focus on feinting the opponent leaving them open for a vital strike, must move at least 10 feet each turn.

Dance to the Maiden: Maneuvers focus on a variety of effect from inspiring allies to feinting foes and going for deadly strikes.[/spoiler]


Discipline: Wall
Description: Be like an unyielding wall which the waves of opposite will break up. To activate these stances you must not be moving, you loose Dexerity to armor but gain various other AC bonuses to that are greater. Most maneuvers require a shield to work properly.
[spoiler Stances of the Wall]Stance, Wall of Ages: Maneuvers give a very large bonus to AC and stops enemies from moving through your square. Very good at holding a position.

Stance, Wall of the Sea: Maneuvers give a large bonus to AC as well as a Damage reduction amount.

Stance, Wall of Sand: Maneuvers give a moderate bonus to AC but every time your are struck you get a retributive strike or strikes.

Stance, Wall of Spears: Maneuvers must use a reach weapon but you get multiple attacks of opportunity, good at holding a larger opening from advancing
foes. Other maneuvers focus on using a reach weapon in close combat.

Stance, Wall of Boulders: Maneuvers focus on crushing foes who get within range, often by using a shield bash and a weapon strike.[/spoiler]

edit: forgot to add, as you gain in level you get access to more maneuvers in a stance. Every level you gain at least 1 new maneuver(s) which you select from your known stances. Think of stances like Cleric domains you select a domain but instead of automatically getting the maneuvers as you level you have to pick which ones you want. The upside is that you get a lot of stances to choose from where as a cleric can only have one or two domains. By level 20 a martial character will probably have between 30 and 50 maneuvers, some will be weak first level maneuvers, other will be much more powerful.

Im sorry but ADEU is a French word for goodbye, not a combat system. You say, "Encounter Power" and I stop listening to you. [spoiler Have Played/Run] D&D 1st ed D&D 3.5 ed D&D 4th ed Shadowrun Star Wars SAGA Cyberpunk Interlock Unlimited Run.Net [/spoiler] I know my games, don't try to argue about them. [spoiler Alignment Explained] This is a very simple problem and I will outline it below. Their are two types of people Type 1: a lot of people (not all, but a lot) who play see alignment as "I am lawful good thus I must play lawful good" Type 2: a lot of people (not all, but a lot) who play see alignment as "My previous actions have made people and the gods view me as lawful good. The difference is subtle but it is the source of the misunderstanding. Alignment does not dictate how you play your character. All it does is tell you, the player, how the rest of the world views you, and your previous actions. Any future actions will be judged by their own merits. Say you're a baby eating pyromaniac. You are most likely chaotic evil. But one day you decide, "Hey all I really need is love." So you get a wife, have a kid, and get a kitten named Mr. Snook'ems. You become a member of the PTA and help build houses for the homeless. You are no longer chaotic evil. And just because you were once chaotic evil it does not mean that you have to stay chaotic evil. Alignment never dictates what you can do, it only says what you have done. Now that is cleared up here is a simple test. What is the alignment of... A Police officer: The average Citizen: A Vigilante: The answer is simple. The Police officer is lawful good. He uses the laws of the country and city to arrest people and make them pay their debt to society. The Citizen is Neutral good. He wants to live is a place that is Good and follows moral and ethical principle, but he sometimes finds the laws impedes him, and he wonders why we spend so much on poor people. The Vigilante is Chaotic Good. He wants to uphold the morals and ethics of society but finds that the bad guys often slip through the cracks in the law. He takes it upon himself to protect the people from these criminals. That is the basic breakdown of the good alignment axis. What needs to be remembered is that any one of these people can change alignments, easily. The Police officer could be bought off by a local gang, and suddenly he drops to lawful neutral. The average citizen might find that his neighbors dog is annoying, barking at night and keeping him up. So he poisons its food, now he is no longer good, he is stepping towards true neutral. Maybe the citizen really goes crazy also kills the neighbor, hello neutral evil. It is possible that the Vigilante realizes that the cops are actually doing a pretty good job and decides to become an officer himself, leaving his masked crime fighting days behind him. Now he is Lawful good. Your alignment is not carved in stone, it is malleable and will change to reflect your actions.[/spoiler]
Uhm... I fail to see how this is answering the problem. This seems a potentially cool system for martial classes once it's fleshed out and cooler stuff is added, but it's not exactly a solution to the magic vs martial debate, per se. Just take a look at how ToB classes were in comparison to caster classes. Yeah, sure, they were a lot better than a fighter, but... simply giving them a system like this, effectively giving them a decent execution, does not automatically set straight the differences between the concepts.

I see no reference to out of combat stuff, no reference to how the spell system would be nerfed to get in par with this system, no reference to how you would preserve inter class parity with this system in place, no reference to how you would settle the underlying issues of Vancian magic, no reference to how you would handle the stronger spells... As it is, it just seems like a (IMHO worse) rehash of Tome of Battle stuff. 
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Reflavoring: the change of flavor without changing any mechanical part of the game, no matter how small, in order to fit the mechanics to an otherwise unsupported concept. Retexturing: the change of flavor (with at most minor mechanical adaptations) in order to effortlessly create support for a concept without inventing anything new. Houseruling: the change, either minor or major, of the mechanics in order to better reflect a certain aspect of the game, including adapting the rules to fit an otherwise unsupported concept. Homebrewing: the complete invention of something new that fits within the system in order to reflect an unsupported concept.
Ideas for 5E
Just take a look at how ToB classes were in comparison to caster classes.

My party fighter loved it saying that it put him on par with casters in combat, it also allowed him to actually have choices and variety in his attacks.

I see no reference to out of combat stuff

Correct this is a fix for in combat only. Out of combat is handled by other class abilites. Like how the rogues and bards have non-combat abilites.
no reference to how the spell system would be nerfed to get in par with this system

You seemed to have missed the first part. I post it again.
What we seem to disagree on is how to fix the problem. Some people call for decreasing magic power, other only want to modify magic power or its spells, still others talk about boosting martial power. I find a fourth option appealing. Modify Martial power.

no reference to how you would preserve inter class parity with this system in place

This is a fix for the martial classes, the magic classes are considered too powerful, so I am fixing the martial classes so they have power. In my opinion the problem with martial classes is they lacked options and they lacked ways to increas in power as the game progressed, this gives them both. Maneuvers give options, and as they increase in level they get access to more powerful maneuvers in the chosen stances. Think of stances like cleric domains, as the cleric gets better he gets better spells in his domain.

no reference to how you would settle the underlying issues of Vancian magic

That is because Vancian has no underlying flaws, just flawed implementation, mostly in the form of badly designed spells.

no reference to how you would handle the stronger spells...

I assume you mean maneuvers not spells, this system is designed to not make fighters into martial spell casters. It would appear that I forgot to add the line about how you get access to better maneuvers within your stances, I will fix that. Thanks.

As it is, it just seems like a (IMHO worse) rehash of Tome of Battle stuff. 

Maybe you need to take a second look at it?

Im sorry but ADEU is a French word for goodbye, not a combat system. You say, "Encounter Power" and I stop listening to you. [spoiler Have Played/Run] D&D 1st ed D&D 3.5 ed D&D 4th ed Shadowrun Star Wars SAGA Cyberpunk Interlock Unlimited Run.Net [/spoiler] I know my games, don't try to argue about them. [spoiler Alignment Explained] This is a very simple problem and I will outline it below. Their are two types of people Type 1: a lot of people (not all, but a lot) who play see alignment as "I am lawful good thus I must play lawful good" Type 2: a lot of people (not all, but a lot) who play see alignment as "My previous actions have made people and the gods view me as lawful good. The difference is subtle but it is the source of the misunderstanding. Alignment does not dictate how you play your character. All it does is tell you, the player, how the rest of the world views you, and your previous actions. Any future actions will be judged by their own merits. Say you're a baby eating pyromaniac. You are most likely chaotic evil. But one day you decide, "Hey all I really need is love." So you get a wife, have a kid, and get a kitten named Mr. Snook'ems. You become a member of the PTA and help build houses for the homeless. You are no longer chaotic evil. And just because you were once chaotic evil it does not mean that you have to stay chaotic evil. Alignment never dictates what you can do, it only says what you have done. Now that is cleared up here is a simple test. What is the alignment of... A Police officer: The average Citizen: A Vigilante: The answer is simple. The Police officer is lawful good. He uses the laws of the country and city to arrest people and make them pay their debt to society. The Citizen is Neutral good. He wants to live is a place that is Good and follows moral and ethical principle, but he sometimes finds the laws impedes him, and he wonders why we spend so much on poor people. The Vigilante is Chaotic Good. He wants to uphold the morals and ethics of society but finds that the bad guys often slip through the cracks in the law. He takes it upon himself to protect the people from these criminals. That is the basic breakdown of the good alignment axis. What needs to be remembered is that any one of these people can change alignments, easily. The Police officer could be bought off by a local gang, and suddenly he drops to lawful neutral. The average citizen might find that his neighbors dog is annoying, barking at night and keeping him up. So he poisons its food, now he is no longer good, he is stepping towards true neutral. Maybe the citizen really goes crazy also kills the neighbor, hello neutral evil. It is possible that the Vigilante realizes that the cops are actually doing a pretty good job and decides to become an officer himself, leaving his masked crime fighting days behind him. Now he is Lawful good. Your alignment is not carved in stone, it is malleable and will change to reflect your actions.[/spoiler]
i've never read Tome of Battle for 3.5 as i had long since given up on that system by the time to book came out. none of what you're working on even comes close to closing the gap between fighter & 3.5 wizard.

the main issue is "the fighter can fight... and that's it." while the wizard can still output relevant amounts of damage when needed but is capable of SO much more.

nothing in there allows the fighter to navigate with the maneuvrability of a flying or gaseous wizard

nothing in there gives the fighter the stealth strikes of an invisible or similar wizard

nothing in there gives the fighter the raw strenght of the polymorphed wizard

nothing in there gives the fighter the abilty to go in/out of combat as a wizard's flight or teleportation

nothing in there seems to be more then "give the fighter a few bonuses to damage, attacks, extra attacks or saves/defenses"  

sure, he's got a lot of manuvers, but when the wizard is flying around like an invisible, 20ft long man-eating millipede that devours his enemies whole (that can potentially teleport because, hey, he's a wizard. magic, amirite?) or bring up torrential winds, douse the feild in darkness blacker then the blackest night... all the fighter is doing is a few extra damage? that's the great balancer? +2 damage, +2 VS fear? 

sorry but no. that won't cut it. 
The problem is your "less magical in nature" part, I think. The number one complaint I hear about 4e Martial characters and things like ToB is that they're "too magical". NO KIDDING!? That's the point!

What possible part of the ability to launch twenty-plus accurate, damaging sword strikes against a foe in under six seconds leads people to believe that this isn't a supernatural ability? What leads people to believe that a man who is so charismatic and inspiring that he can literally bring his allies back from the brink of death and allow them to shrug off grevious wounds merely by talking to them is not something greater than simply mortal? How do people conclude that a warrior wielding a simple shield and sword can stop a four-ton dire bear's charge cold does not possess some kind of greater power? By what means is it the popular ken that a man who is so precise with his weapons that he can kill an eighty-foot dragon with a six-inch quarrel from fifty meters away is not magical?

Martial is not the same as mundane. Martial heroes are no less supernatural creatures than Arcane heroes, or Divine heroes, or Primal heroes. 
-m4ki; one down, one to go

"Retro is not new. Retro-fit is not new." --Seeker95, on why I won't be playing DDN

|| DDN Metrics (0-10) | enthusiasm: 1 | confidence in design: -3 | desire to play: 0 | Sticking with 4e?: Yep. | Better Options: IKRPG Mk II ||
The Five Things D&D Next Absolutely Must Not Do:
1. Imbalanced gameplay. Any and all characters must be able to contribute equally both in combat and out of combat at all levels of play. If the Fighters are linear and the Wizards quadratic, I walk. 2. Hardcore simulationist approach. D&D is a game about heroic fantasy. I'm weak and useless enough in real life; I play RPGs for a change of pace. If the only reason a rule exists is because "that's how it's supposed to be", I walk. I don't want a game that "simulates" real life, I want a game that simulates heroic fantasy. 3. Worshipping at false idols (AKA Sacred Cows). If the only reason a rule exists is "it's always been that way", I walk. Now to be clear, I have no problem with some things not changing; my issue is with retaining bad idea simply for the sake of nostalgia. 4. DM vs. players. If the game encourages "gotcha!" moments or treats the DM and players as enemies, adversaries, or problems to be overcome, I walk. 5. Rules for the sake of rules. The only thing I want rules for is the things I can't do sitting around a table with my friends. If the rules try to step on my ability to roleplay the character I want to roleplay, I walk. Furthermore, the rules serve to facilitate gameplay, not to simulate the world. NOTE: Items in red have been violated.
Chris Perkins' DM Survival Tips:
1. When in doubt, wing it. 2. Keep the story moving. Go with the flow. 3. Sometimes things make the best characters. 4. Always give players lots of things to do. 5. Wherever possible, say ‘yes.’ 6. Cheating is largely unnecessary. 7. Don't be afraid to give the characters a fun new toy. 8. Don't get in the way of a good players exchange. 9. Avoid talking too much. 10. Save some details for later. 11. Be transparent. 12. Don't show all your cards. Words to live by.
Quotes From People Smarter Than Me:
"Essentials zigged, when I wanted to continue zagging..." -Foxface on Essentials "Servicing a diverse fan base with an RPG ruleset - far from being the mandate for 'open design space' and a cavalier attitude towards balance - requires creating a system that /works/, with minimal fuss, for a wide variety of play styles, not just from one group to the next, but at the same table." -Tony_Vargas on design "Mearls' and Cook's stated intent to produce an edition that fans of all previous editions (and Pathfinder) will like more than their current favourite edition is laudable. But it is also, IMO, completely unrealistic. It's like people who pray for world peace: I might share their overall aims, but I'm not going to hold my breath waiting for them to succeed. When they talk in vague terms about what they'd like to do in this new edition, I mostly find myself thinking 'hey, that sounds cool, assuming they can pull it off', but almost every time they've said something specific about actual mechanics, I've found myself wincing and shaking my head in disbelief and/or disgust, either straight away or after thinking about the obvious implications for half a minute." -Duskweaver on D&D Next

Martial is not the same as mundane. Martial heroes are no less supernatural creatures than Arcane heroes, or Divine heroes, or Primal heroes. 



It's a continuum though and a lot of us draw the line a lot closer to mundane than others do.  Perhaps no one is at mundane completely.

I get the level you are comfortable with is pretty high but I think a lot of others are not that open minded about it.  I'd advise the designers to pick a more moderate road if they want to broaden their base and then add the super effects as a module.

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I propose a system of martial stances and maneuvers similar to the Book of Nine Swords, but less magical in nature.



This is the most common misconception about the Book of Nine Swords. There is literally nothing magical about the Warblade. Use that as your basis, ignore the obvious magical schools. The basis should be in: Diamond Mind, Stone Dragon (to an extent. There are some magical-esque abilities in here), Iron Heart, Tiger Claw and Setting Sun. These are all non-magical, primarily. They are within the realms of 'superhuman', which is what we can agree Martial characters should be, at some point in their career.

Go from there.


I get the level you are comfortable with is pretty high but I think a lot of others are not that open minded about it.  I'd advise the designers to pick a more moderate road if they want to broaden their base and then add the super effects as a module.


The enduring popularity of superhero comics, shounen manga and characters like Conan, Aragorn and the Chief stands as evidence to the contrary. 


EDIT: And by the way, I'm not talking about "super effects" or anything of the sort. All of the examples I gave are stuff that 4e characters can do by late-Paragon.
-m4ki; one down, one to go

"Retro is not new. Retro-fit is not new." --Seeker95, on why I won't be playing DDN

|| DDN Metrics (0-10) | enthusiasm: 1 | confidence in design: -3 | desire to play: 0 | Sticking with 4e?: Yep. | Better Options: IKRPG Mk II ||
The Five Things D&D Next Absolutely Must Not Do:
1. Imbalanced gameplay. Any and all characters must be able to contribute equally both in combat and out of combat at all levels of play. If the Fighters are linear and the Wizards quadratic, I walk. 2. Hardcore simulationist approach. D&D is a game about heroic fantasy. I'm weak and useless enough in real life; I play RPGs for a change of pace. If the only reason a rule exists is because "that's how it's supposed to be", I walk. I don't want a game that "simulates" real life, I want a game that simulates heroic fantasy. 3. Worshipping at false idols (AKA Sacred Cows). If the only reason a rule exists is "it's always been that way", I walk. Now to be clear, I have no problem with some things not changing; my issue is with retaining bad idea simply for the sake of nostalgia. 4. DM vs. players. If the game encourages "gotcha!" moments or treats the DM and players as enemies, adversaries, or problems to be overcome, I walk. 5. Rules for the sake of rules. The only thing I want rules for is the things I can't do sitting around a table with my friends. If the rules try to step on my ability to roleplay the character I want to roleplay, I walk. Furthermore, the rules serve to facilitate gameplay, not to simulate the world. NOTE: Items in red have been violated.
Chris Perkins' DM Survival Tips:
1. When in doubt, wing it. 2. Keep the story moving. Go with the flow. 3. Sometimes things make the best characters. 4. Always give players lots of things to do. 5. Wherever possible, say ‘yes.’ 6. Cheating is largely unnecessary. 7. Don't be afraid to give the characters a fun new toy. 8. Don't get in the way of a good players exchange. 9. Avoid talking too much. 10. Save some details for later. 11. Be transparent. 12. Don't show all your cards. Words to live by.
Quotes From People Smarter Than Me:
"Essentials zigged, when I wanted to continue zagging..." -Foxface on Essentials "Servicing a diverse fan base with an RPG ruleset - far from being the mandate for 'open design space' and a cavalier attitude towards balance - requires creating a system that /works/, with minimal fuss, for a wide variety of play styles, not just from one group to the next, but at the same table." -Tony_Vargas on design "Mearls' and Cook's stated intent to produce an edition that fans of all previous editions (and Pathfinder) will like more than their current favourite edition is laudable. But it is also, IMO, completely unrealistic. It's like people who pray for world peace: I might share their overall aims, but I'm not going to hold my breath waiting for them to succeed. When they talk in vague terms about what they'd like to do in this new edition, I mostly find myself thinking 'hey, that sounds cool, assuming they can pull it off', but almost every time they've said something specific about actual mechanics, I've found myself wincing and shaking my head in disbelief and/or disgust, either straight away or after thinking about the obvious implications for half a minute." -Duskweaver on D&D Next
I get the level you are comfortable with is pretty high but I think a lot of others are not that open minded about it.  I'd advise the designers to pick a more moderate road if they want to broaden their base and then add the super effects as a module.



That runs both ways. If magicians are suppose to inherantly be better than martial characters as a rule of thumb, adding in modular options won't fix anything. I want my fighter to not be a third wheel no matter what options do or do not exist.
I propose a system of martial stances and maneuvers similar to the Book of Nine Swords, but less magical in nature.

This is the most common misconception about the Book of Nine Swords. There is literally nothing magical about the Warblade. Use that as your basis, ignore the obvious magical schools. The basis should be in: Diamond Mind, Stone Dragon (to an extent. There are some magical-esque abilities in here), Iron Heart, Tiger Claw and Setting Sun. These are all non-magical, primarily. They are within the realms of 'superhuman', which is what we can agree Martial characters should be, at some point in their career.

That is all correct. My statement is that it is like the Book of Nine Swords, except for the Crusader, and about half of the Swordsage. Since that is about 65% of the book my proposal is "similar to the Book of Nine Swords, but less magical in nature." But the non-magical parts of the Book of Nine Swords are a very good start to fixing the problem. However there should be classes that are a mix of both martial and magic (the Shadow Dancer for example), but that is another thing entirely.


Martial is not the same as mundane. Martial heroes are no less supernatural creatures than Arcane heroes, or Divine heroes, or Primal heroes.

I am saying mundane because they are not magical. 

mun·dane/ˌmənˈdān/
Adjective


  1. Lacking interest or excitement; dull.

  2. Of this earthly world rather than a heavenly or spiritual one.

You are using the first definition, I am using the second. Here are some alternative words I could have used.  "Earthlyworldlyterrestrialmaterialtemporalsecularareligious, sublunary." I just prefered the word mundane, although in this case it has caused confusion.


I am tired of the idea that a powerful warrior needs to be magical in order to be effective. Look at the story of Hercules. He is not magical. How about Achilles, also not magical. King Arthur, also not magical. Paris of Troy, Robin Hood, Attila the Hun, Joan of Arc, Spartacus, Aragorn. All really powerful warriors, all non-magical. So why does my fighter need to be magical? When entering an anit-magic field my fighter should not feel anything unless he has items that are magical. And yes it is possible to be a good fighter and non-magical.



nothing in there gives the fighter the stealth strikes of an invisible or similar wizard


You missed a stance
Stance of the Mouse: Maneuvers focus on stealth

nothing in there allows the fighter to navigate with the maneuvrability of a flying or gaseous wizard
nothing in there gives the fighter the raw strenght of the polymorphed wizard
nothing in there gives the fighter the abilty to go in/out of combat as a wizard's flight or teleportation


You missed a line:
Vancian has no underlying flaws, just flawed implementation, mostly in the form of badly designed spells.
Fix the bad spells fix part of the problem.
For polymorph look at Pathfinder.
For fly make it concentration to maintain
For gaseous, that is an escape spell... not very good if you can't escape with it.
Notice how none of these are done on the martial side of the problem, those are handled on the caster side. Fix the casters spells and you don't have that problem.

nothing in there seems to be more then "give the fighter a few bonuses to damage, attacks, extra attacks or saves/defenses" 


I did not write the specific maneuvers because I did not have time to write all 180 of them, so the idea that the maneuvers are so limited is simply a failure to see all of the possibilites.

Here are a few maneuvers from The Book of Nine Swords that would be very nice.

[spoiler Avalanche Of Blades:] You lash at an opponent. If your attack hits, you repeat the same attack again and again at nearly superhuman speed, allowing you to score multiple hits in a blur of activity. Unfortunately, as soon as an attack misses, your tempo breaks, and this delicate maneuver crumbles into a flurry of wasted motion. [/spoiler]

[spoiler Emerald Razor:] Your understanding of combat, your keenly honed mind, and your capability to read your opponents make you a deadly combatant. When you focus your mind, even the most elusive opponent becomes an easy target. As part of this maneuver, make a single melee attack against an opponent. This is a touch attack rather than a standard melee attack. If you hit, you deal normal melee damage.[/spoiler]

[spoiler Dancing Blade Form:] By carefully distributing your weight and establishing a steady, rugged posture, you can reach out and strike opponents with your melee attacks at a greater than normal distance. A warrior with less training and expertise would fall flat on his face attempting this maneuver. You, on the other hand, have the grace, focus, and skill needed to complete this complex move.
While you are in this stance, you gain a bonus to your reach during your turn. When you make a melee attack, your reach increases by 5 feet. Your reach is not improved when it is not your turn, such as when you make an attack of opportunity. You cannot improve your reach by more than 5 feet by using this ability in conjunction with other maneuvers. [/spoiler]

[Spoiler Baffing Defense:] If your opponent strikes you on his turn, you can replace your AC with the result of a Sense Motive check as an immediate action. You must decide whether to initiate this maneuver before you know the result of your opponent’s attack (but after the attack is declared). Your Sense Motive check applies to only one attack. You must be aware of the attack to which you will apply the effect of this maneuver. If you are flat-footed against the incoming attack, you cannot use this maneuver. [/spoiler]

[Spoiler Shifting Defence:] Your ability to read your opponents’ moves and use their strength against them allows you to shift your position during a battle. Each failed attack gives you the split-second you need to move without drawing attacks.
While you are in this stance, you can make an immediate 5-foot step each time an opponent attacks you. Moving in this manner consumes one of your attacks of opportunity in the currrent round. You cannot move in this manner if you have no attacks of opportunity remaining. This movement does not provoke attacks of opportunity. [/spoiler]

[spoiler Colossus Strike:] As part of this maneuver, you make a melee attack against your foe. This attack deals an extra 6d6 points of damage, and the creature struck must succeed on a Fortitude save (DC 17 + your Str modifier) or be hurled 1d4 squares away from you, falling prone in that square. A creature of a smaller size category than yours gets a –2 penalty on this save; a creature of a larger size category than yours gets a +2 bonus on the save. The enemy’s movement doesn’t provoke attacks of opportunity. If an obstacle blocks the creature’s movement, it instead stops in the first unoccupied square.[/spoiler]

See a few very fun examples of what maneuvers can do. And if you want there are plenty of options for martial magic, like how the shadow dancer uses shadows. But my basic fighter does not need to resort to such things and I think it is bad form to force all martial characters to become semi-magical.

Im sorry but ADEU is a French word for goodbye, not a combat system. You say, "Encounter Power" and I stop listening to you. [spoiler Have Played/Run] D&D 1st ed D&D 3.5 ed D&D 4th ed Shadowrun Star Wars SAGA Cyberpunk Interlock Unlimited Run.Net [/spoiler] I know my games, don't try to argue about them. [spoiler Alignment Explained] This is a very simple problem and I will outline it below. Their are two types of people Type 1: a lot of people (not all, but a lot) who play see alignment as "I am lawful good thus I must play lawful good" Type 2: a lot of people (not all, but a lot) who play see alignment as "My previous actions have made people and the gods view me as lawful good. The difference is subtle but it is the source of the misunderstanding. Alignment does not dictate how you play your character. All it does is tell you, the player, how the rest of the world views you, and your previous actions. Any future actions will be judged by their own merits. Say you're a baby eating pyromaniac. You are most likely chaotic evil. But one day you decide, "Hey all I really need is love." So you get a wife, have a kid, and get a kitten named Mr. Snook'ems. You become a member of the PTA and help build houses for the homeless. You are no longer chaotic evil. And just because you were once chaotic evil it does not mean that you have to stay chaotic evil. Alignment never dictates what you can do, it only says what you have done. Now that is cleared up here is a simple test. What is the alignment of... A Police officer: The average Citizen: A Vigilante: The answer is simple. The Police officer is lawful good. He uses the laws of the country and city to arrest people and make them pay their debt to society. The Citizen is Neutral good. He wants to live is a place that is Good and follows moral and ethical principle, but he sometimes finds the laws impedes him, and he wonders why we spend so much on poor people. The Vigilante is Chaotic Good. He wants to uphold the morals and ethics of society but finds that the bad guys often slip through the cracks in the law. He takes it upon himself to protect the people from these criminals. That is the basic breakdown of the good alignment axis. What needs to be remembered is that any one of these people can change alignments, easily. The Police officer could be bought off by a local gang, and suddenly he drops to lawful neutral. The average citizen might find that his neighbors dog is annoying, barking at night and keeping him up. So he poisons its food, now he is no longer good, he is stepping towards true neutral. Maybe the citizen really goes crazy also kills the neighbor, hello neutral evil. It is possible that the Vigilante realizes that the cops are actually doing a pretty good job and decides to become an officer himself, leaving his masked crime fighting days behind him. Now he is Lawful good. Your alignment is not carved in stone, it is malleable and will change to reflect your actions.[/spoiler]

I am tired of the idea that a powerful warrior needs to be magical in order to be effective. Look at the story of Hercules. He is not magical. How about Achilles, also not magical. King Arthur, also not magical. Paris of Troy, Robin Hood, Attila the Hun, Joan of Arc, Spartacus, Aragorn all non-magical, all really powerful. So why does my fighter need to be magical? When entering an anit-magi field my fighter should not feel anything unless he has items that are magical. And yes it is possible to be a good fighter and non-magical.



I like these little points where we agree.  
Seriously, though, you should check out the PbP Haven. You might also like Real Adventures, IF you're cool.
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I am tired of the idea that a powerful warrior needs to be magical in order to be effective. Look at the story of Hercules. He is not magical. How about Achilles, also not magical. King Arthur, also not magical. Paris of Troy, Robin Hood, Attila the Hun, Joan of Arc, Spartacus, Aragorn. All really powerful warriors, all non-magical. So why does my fighter need to be magical? When entering an anit-magic field my fighter should not feel anything unless he has items that are magical. And yes it is possible to be a good fighter and non-magical.



We're not asking the sword-swingers to be magical. We're asking they don't suck by comparison. Applying "magic" just happens to be the best way to do this without stepping on the toes of people who whine that it's not realistic.

I am tired of the idea that a powerful warrior needs to be magical in order to be effective. Look at the story of Hercules. He is not magical. How about Achilles, also not magical. King Arthur, also not magical. Paris of Troy, Robin Hood, Attila the Hun, Joan of Arc, Spartacus, Aragorn all non-magical, all really powerful. So why does my fighter need to be magical? When entering an anit-magi field my fighter should not feel anything unless he has items that are magical. And yes it is possible to be a good fighter and non-magical.



I like these little points where we agree.  


While I also agree, there is one glaring mistake there: Hercules.  He was a demigod.

There are a great many problems that can be circumvented by players and DMs having a mature discussion about what the game is going to be like before they ever sit down together to play.

 

The answer really does lie in more options, not in confining and segregating certain options.

 

You really shouldn't speak for others.  You can't hear what someone else is saying when you try to put your words in their mouth.

 

Fencing & Swashbuckling as Armor.

D20 Modern Toon PC Race.

Mecha Pilot's Skill Challenge Emporium.

 

#BoobsNotBlood


I am tired of the idea that a powerful warrior needs to be magical in order to be effective. Look at the story of Hercules. He is not magical. How about Achilles, also not magical. King Arthur, also not magical. Paris of Troy, Robin Hood, Attila the Hun, Joan of Arc, Spartacus, Aragorn all non-magical, all really powerful. So why does my fighter need to be magical? When entering an anit-magi field my fighter should not feel anything unless he has items that are magical. And yes it is possible to be a good fighter and non-magical.



I like these little points where we agree.  


While I also agree, there is one glaring mistake there: Hercules.  He was a demigod.

Achilles was quite enchanted as well, being dipped in the river Styx to be given immortality.

Celebrate our differences.


I am tired of the idea that a powerful warrior needs to be magical in order to be effective. Look at the story of Hercules. He is not magical. How about Achilles, also not magical. King Arthur, also not magical. Paris of Troy, Robin Hood, Attila the Hun, Joan of Arc, Spartacus, Aragorn all non-magical, all really powerful. So why does my fighter need to be magical? When entering an anit-magi field my fighter should not feel anything unless he has items that are magical. And yes it is possible to be a good fighter and non-magical.



I like these little points where we agree.  


While I also agree, there is one glaring mistake there: Hercules.  He was a demigod.

Achilles was quite enchanted as well, being dipped in the river Styx to be given immortality.


True, but he was born a mortal.  By that token, he's really no different than a D&D fighter who found a very special magic item.

There are a great many problems that can be circumvented by players and DMs having a mature discussion about what the game is going to be like before they ever sit down together to play.

 

The answer really does lie in more options, not in confining and segregating certain options.

 

You really shouldn't speak for others.  You can't hear what someone else is saying when you try to put your words in their mouth.

 

Fencing & Swashbuckling as Armor.

D20 Modern Toon PC Race.

Mecha Pilot's Skill Challenge Emporium.

 

#BoobsNotBlood


I am tired of the idea that a powerful warrior needs to be magical in order to be effective. Look at the story of Hercules. He is not magical. How about Achilles, also not magical. King Arthur, also not magical. Paris of Troy, Robin Hood, Attila the Hun, Joan of Arc, Spartacus, Aragorn all non-magical, all really powerful. So why does my fighter need to be magical? When entering an anit-magi field my fighter should not feel anything unless he has items that are magical. And yes it is possible to be a good fighter and non-magical.



I like these little points where we agree.  


While I also agree, there is one glaring mistake there: Hercules.  He was a demigod.

Achilles was quite enchanted as well, being dipped in the river Styx to be given immortality.


True, but he was born a mortal.  By that token, he's really no different than a D&D fighter who found a very special magic item.

Or acquired a new power.  The point can be made either way, I suppose, although he was dipped into the river Styx as a baby, before he was a fighter.

Celebrate our differences.

Just take a look at how ToB classes were in comparison to caster classes.

My party fighter loved it saying that it put him on par with casters in combat, it also allowed him to actually have choices and variety in his attacks.



We loved it too before a better system came out. One that has drawn inspiration from ToB. But even as we liked it, martial adepts were fun, not powerful. I've heard people saying that Strike of Perfect Clarity is a broken manoeuvre because it deals 100 extra damage, but a common Power Attacking build gets that kind of damage around level 6 or 7. ToB didn't fix any issues, it was just a cool book.

I see no reference to out of combat stuff

Correct this is a fix for in combat only. Out of combat is handled by other class abilites. Like how the rogues and bards have non-combat abilites.



How about the fighter? I don't want a fighter that can only fight. He should have class features designed for out of combat situations, from social ones to exploration to investigation to travel.

no reference to how the spell system would be nerfed to get in par with this system

You seemed to have missed the first part. I post it again.
What we seem to disagree on is how to fix the problem. Some people call for decreasing magic power, other only want to modify magic power or its spells, still others talk about boosting martial power. I find a fourth option appealing. Modify Martial power.



Well we have a problem here. Your solution doesn't take into account a lot of stuff. What you refer as a solution to martial power is simply a way to redesign martial power to give it variety and power, it doesn't touch any of the issues of the system. You need to ristructure the whole system, starting from magic users, in order for your system to work.

no reference to how you would preserve inter class parity with this system in place

This is a fix for the martial classes, the magic classes are considered too powerful, so I am fixing the martial classes so they have power. In my opinion the problem with martial classes is they lacked options and they lacked ways to increas in power as the game progressed, this gives them both. Maneuvers give options, and as they increase in level they get access to more powerful maneuvers in the chosen stances. Think of stances like cleric domains, as the cleric gets better he gets better spells in his domain.



This is good in a system that supports it. A system resembling 3.5 wouldn't support it. Face it: it didn't support this. ToB failed in that system, because it was rotten to the core. I can get behind this stuff as a start. But we already have this stuff (or a similar one) in 4E.

no reference to how you would settle the underlying issues of Vancian magic

That is because Vancian has no underlying flaws, just flawed implementation, mostly in the form of badly designed spells.



Vancian casting's flaws.

no reference to how you would handle the stronger spells...

I assume you mean maneuvers not spells, this system is designed to not make fighters into martial spell casters. It would appear that I forgot to add the line about how you get access to better maneuvers within your stances, I will fix that. Thanks.


No, I mean spells. Your system is a neat pearl, but how do you avoid it being covered in the massive amount of dirt of previous systems?



It seems we disagree on a lot of things. I can get behind some of your ideas, although I'd go for a different implementation (take a look at this for a start), but that's not enough to make a viable system and to solve magic vs non magic disparity.
I don't want a system where fighters need magic to be on par with the wizards, I want inter class parity at every given level, I want a system where both combat and out-of-combat are balanced inside and throughout every class, race, theme and option, I want a system where magic doesn't trump equally powerful non-magic, I want a system where none of the Vancian casting flaws are present, I want a system that gives meaningful options and choices to everyone, I want a system that keeps classes distinct in feel and playstyle rather than a blend of fullattacking / powerful spells casting sameness.
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Reflavoring: the change of flavor without changing any mechanical part of the game, no matter how small, in order to fit the mechanics to an otherwise unsupported concept. Retexturing: the change of flavor (with at most minor mechanical adaptations) in order to effortlessly create support for a concept without inventing anything new. Houseruling: the change, either minor or major, of the mechanics in order to better reflect a certain aspect of the game, including adapting the rules to fit an otherwise unsupported concept. Homebrewing: the complete invention of something new that fits within the system in order to reflect an unsupported concept.
Ideas for 5E
This system runs into the same problem we always see when trying to make fighters or martial classes more interesting:  it just takes the very limited bailiwick of the 'realistic' fighter and minces it into fine-grained but ultimately meaningless and often useless detail.  Confronted with the complaint that a class can do too little, you take away most of what it can do and dole it back in smaller pieces.  

Even though 4e aparently drove people crazy by giving fighters the same number and level of powers as casters had spells, it also suffered from that phenomenon.  The fighter has more powers than any other class, but the vast majority of them just do [W] damage and have the fighter dance around a little.  



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This system runs into the same problem you always see when trying to make fighters or martial classes more interesting:  it just takes the very limited bailiwick of the 'realistic' fighter and minces it into fine-grained but ultimately meaningless and often useless detail.  Confronted with the complaint that a class can do too little, you take away most of what it can do and dole it back in smaller pieces.  

Even though 4e aparently drove people crazy by giving fighters the same number of powers as casters had spells, it also suffered from that phenomenon.  The fighter has more powers than any other class, but the vast majority of them just do [W] damage and have the fighter dance around a little.  



On the other hand, fighter class features are good at defining what a fighter does, and some powers (especially Come and Get It and some stances) really provide an interesting fighter, play-wise.
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Reflavoring: the change of flavor without changing any mechanical part of the game, no matter how small, in order to fit the mechanics to an otherwise unsupported concept. Retexturing: the change of flavor (with at most minor mechanical adaptations) in order to effortlessly create support for a concept without inventing anything new. Houseruling: the change, either minor or major, of the mechanics in order to better reflect a certain aspect of the game, including adapting the rules to fit an otherwise unsupported concept. Homebrewing: the complete invention of something new that fits within the system in order to reflect an unsupported concept.
Ideas for 5E
On the other hand, fighter class features are good at defining what a fighter does, and some powers (especially Come and Get It and some stances) really provide an interesting fighter, play-wise.

They are good at defining what a martial defender does.  Fighters used to use bows, for instance.  Fighters used to build fortresses and attract followers.   Come and Get It is an interesting, flavorful, and useful power and one of the very few fighter powers that shows some real potential.  If the fighter had gotten another hundred powers as different from eachother as Come and Get It was from the other fighter powers in the Player's Handbook, instead of another two hundred powers for dancing around doing X[W] damage, that would have been something.

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I appreciate the OP's effort, but here's the fundamental flaw: the D&D world is magical. There are ghosts, wizards, golems, angels, swarms of tiny demons, purple worms, and fire giants. It's not possible to use reasonable, real-world explanations for a guy with a sword killing another guy who is thirty feet tall, stronger than an elephant, and wielding an axe that looks like a telephone pole. The world doesn't make sense or follow any laws of physics, so if some guy has to be constrained by what a real medieval knight would do when faced with a highly intelligent, malevolent, fire-breathing reptile that can fly through the air, that guy is going to die. The only way that martial characters can matter is if they are comparable to magical ones.

This is also a big deal out of combat. If the swordmage is equal to the fighter in combat but is also capable of teleporting across the world and seeing the future, playing a fighter is hard mode. If the ranger's arrows are as deadly as the warlock's blasts, but the warlock can travel the planes and speak to omniscient beings while the ranger is stuck following tracks with his pet wolf, then playing a ranger is a chump move. If the sorceror and the barbarian can both empty out a room full of foes, but the sorceror can use mind control and flight while the barbarian has intimidate and jump, there is a problem. If the warlord is expected to be no more than a really effective drill sergeant whereas the cleric can perform instantaneous heart surgery in between summoning angels, creating storms of divine fire, and unmaking undead abominations with the sheer force of his faith, I think I know which one is worth playing.

Again, I don't want anyone to feel bad for having ideas that try to bridge the differences between philosophies of different editions. Like a lot of people are saying though, this needs to start with a recognition of what those differences are. Giving martial classes more options isn't the same as giving them comparably worthwhile options.

truth/humor
Ed_Warlord, on what it takes to make a thread work: I think for it to be really constructive, everyone would have to be honest with each other, and with themselves.

 

iserith: The game doesn't profess to be "just like our world." What it is just like is the world of Dungeons & Dragons. Any semblance to reality is purely coincidental.

 

Areleth: How does this help the problems we have with Fighters? Do you think that every time I thought I was playing D&D what I was actually doing was slamming my head in a car door and that if you just explain how to play without doing that then I'll finally enjoy the game?

 

TD: That's why they put me on the front of every book. This is the dungeon, and I am the dragon. A word of warning though: I'm totally not a level appropriate encounter.

On the other hand, fighter class features are good at defining what a fighter does, and some powers (especially Come and Get It and some stances) really provide an interesting fighter, play-wise.

There good at defining what a martial defender does.  Fighters used to use bows, for instance.  Fighters used to build fortresses and attract followers.   Come and Get It is an interesting, flavorful, and useful power and one of the very few fighter powers that shows some real potential.  If the fighter had gotten another hundred powers as different from eachother as Come and Get It was from the other fighter powers in the Player's Handbook, instead of another two hundred powers for dancing around doing X[W] damage, that would have been something.



I agree with the bolded and would actually be pretty happy with, say, 20 meaningfully different powers for each class (truly different ones, not marginally different ones).

I should note however that "the fighter" is the martial defender. Or rather, I don't care about "the fighter" and I care about having a martial defender class. Call it Dumbledore if you must, but that's what supports a "fighter gameplay", not the name fighter. If your concept is "archer", then go play a ranger or a warlord. If you want to be able to use a bow effectively while being a martial defender, run a Str / Dex fighter; you can even multiclass to ranger or warlord for some archery powers if you wish. Don't be attached to labels, those are worthless.

Building fortresses and attracting followers is something everybody should be able to do with proper resource investment, but I agree it could be something interesting. It falls under the realm of "interesting out-of-combat stuff for fighters and other martial classes", which I totally support.
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Reflavoring: the change of flavor without changing any mechanical part of the game, no matter how small, in order to fit the mechanics to an otherwise unsupported concept. Retexturing: the change of flavor (with at most minor mechanical adaptations) in order to effortlessly create support for a concept without inventing anything new. Houseruling: the change, either minor or major, of the mechanics in order to better reflect a certain aspect of the game, including adapting the rules to fit an otherwise unsupported concept. Homebrewing: the complete invention of something new that fits within the system in order to reflect an unsupported concept.
Ideas for 5E
I appreciate the OP's effort, but here's the fundamental flaw: the D&D world is magical. There are ghosts, wizards, golems, angels, swarms of tiny demons, purple worms, and fire giants. It's not possible to use reasonable, real-world explanations for a guy with a sword killing another guy who is thirty feet tall, stronger than an elephant, and wielding an axe that looks like a telephone pole. The world doesn't make sense or follow any laws of physics, so if some guy has to be constrained by what a real medieval knight would do when faced with a highly intelligent, malevolent, fire-breathing reptile that can fly through the air, that guy is going to die. The only way that martial characters can matter is if they are comparable to magical ones.

This is also a big deal out of combat. If the swordmage is equal to the fighter in combat but is also capable of teleporting across the world and seeing the future, playing a fighter is hard mode. If the ranger's arrows are as deadly as the warlock's blasts, but the warlock can travel the planes and speak to omniscient beings while the ranger is stuck following tracks with his pet wolf, then playing a ranger is a chump move. If the sorceror and the barbarian can both empty out a room full of foes, but the sorceror can use mind control and flight while the barbarian has intimidate and jump, there is a problem. If the warlord is expected to be no more than a really effective drill sergeant whereas the cleric can perform instantaneous heart surgery in between summoning angels, creating storms of divine fire, and unmaking undead abominations with the sheer force of his faith, I think I know which one is worth playing.

Again, I don't want anyone to feel bad for having ideas that try to bridge the differences between philosophies of different editions. Like a lot of people are saying though, this needs to start with a recognition of what those differences are. Giving martial classes more options isn't the same as giving them comparably worthwhile options.

This is how I feel as well.  I don't think of a fantasy world as the real world that suddenly gets the addition of dragons and magic.  Non-magical characters are helpless against any magical threat.  This is the Harry Potter world, and while I greatly enjoy the books, I don't want that for my D&D world.
For my D&D world I want something more like mythology.  You have a world in which magic and monsters are built in from the start.  Everyone knows about them.  And heroes are just as often martial as they are divine, arcane, or whatever.  This is the world in which a fighter can defeat a dragon.

Here's my deal.  Magic needs to feel magical.  At the same time, it shouldn't invalidate other choices.  I agree that something needs to be done so that non-spellcasters don't become pointless in the late game.  However, I do not agree that all the classes need to be balanced in power against each other.  They need to be balanced in effectiveness in the party.  It needs to feel like your fighter is needed, even at 20th level, when the Wizard is firing off Meteor Swarms.  

Some of this can be done by changing magic; making some high level spells take longer to cast, and be able to be disrupted would help keep the Wizard from being all powerful.  At the same time, the Fighter needs to be fun to play as well, not merely competent.  I think that was the biggest problem in earlier editions of the game.  Not so much that the Fighter became obsolete, more that he didn't have anything cool to do.  High level casters have all these amazing things they can do with their spells, whereas the Fighter is still stuck doing the same things he did way back at 1st level.  He's just better at hitting now.  

Giving martial characters cool things to do is what should be most important in making them into classes that are viable and desireable to play all the way to max level.  Stances, manuevers, special attacks, stunts, all these things should be looked into.  Not necessarily making it so that martial characters can do everything magical characters can, just doing it somehow without using magic.
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We're not asking the sword-swingers to be magical. We're asking they don't suck by comparison. Applying "magic" just happens to be the best way to do this without stepping on the toes of people who whine that it's not realistic.



Quoting for truth.

Also, the "magic" that he speaks of here isn't necessairly arcane or divine or primal magic; it could be that innate spark of greatness that makes this character a heroic adventurer, and the kid born next door on the same day and the same time a mundane farmer.

Gold is for the mistress, silver for the maid

Copper for the craftsman, cunning at his trade.

"Good!" said the Baron, sitting in his hall,

"But Iron -- Cold Iron -- is master of them all." -Kipling

 

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57019168 wrote:
I am a hero, not a chump.
Here's my deal.  Magic needs to feel magical.

I agree.  But unfortunately, everyone seems to have a different way of defining this "feel".  For me, anyone who can blast fire, cold, and lightning from their fingertips, levitate, fly, turn invisible, deflect an attack with a shield of force, etc. is magical.  The stuff they are doing clearly feels like magic.  The mechanics aren't important to me; it is the effects that make it magical.  And in every edition of D&D, these are things that wizards can do and fighters can't do.
Some of this can be done by changing magic; making some high level spells take longer to cast, and be able to be disrupted would help keep the Wizard from being all powerful.

I don't think this is the best way to go.  I don't think anyone would have fun sitting around for a few rounds waiting for their big spell to go off.  And having spells be disrupted forces the designers to find a perfect sweet spot.  The spells can't be too easy to disrupt, but it also can't be too hard.  How often should they be disrupted, on average?  Can you optimize your wizard to prevent your spells from being disrupted?  How much more powerful should the spells be (compared to a fighter's attacks) to compensate for the chance of disruption?  I feel this is too much complexity that could be solved simply by toning down the power of the wizard's spells.  Again, mechanics don't make things magical.  In this case, this refers to the amount of damage.  More damage (or more power) doesn't mean more magical.
High level casters have all these amazing things they can do with their spells, whereas the Fighter is still stuck doing the same things he did way back at 1st level.  He's just better at hitting now.  

Giving martial characters cool things to do is what should be most important in making them into classes that are viable and desireable to play all the way to max level.  Stances, manuevers, special attacks, stunts, all these things should be looked into.

This is the heart of the issue, and something that I think the designers will address.  A high level fighter should feel high level in the same way that a high level wizard does.  The high level wizard isn't just casting a more powerful  magic missile and burning hands.  They are casting time stop, meteor swarm, and wish.  In the same way, the high level fighter shouldn't simply be swining his sword harder and with more accuracy.  He should have epic stances, manuevers, special attacks, and stunts.
Not necessarily making it so that martial characters can do everything magical characters can, just doing it somehow without using magic.

As with my thoughts on the feel of magic, this is something that I think has been true in all editions of D&D.  Martial characters have never been able to do everything magical characters can do.  Again, keep in mind that I'm not talking about mechanics (meaning the way the game is designed).  If all you do is say that because a martial character has at-will, encounter, daily, and utility powers (just like a wizard) they can do everything a magical character can do, you are missing the point.  It would be like saying that because the wizard has AC and HP they are as tough as a fighter.  The fighter, even with all his powers, can't do what the wizard can do.


High level casters have all these amazing things they can do with their spells, whereas the Fighter is still stuck doing the same things he did way back at 1st level.  He's just better at hitting now.  

Giving martial characters cool things to do is what should be most important in making them into classes that are viable and desireable to play all the way to max level.  Stances, manuevers, special attacks, stunts, all these things should be looked into.

This is the heart of the issue, and something that I think the designers will address.  A high level fighter should feel high level in the same way that a high level wizard does.  The high level wizard isn't just casting a more powerful  magic missile and burning hands.  They are casting time stop, meteor swarm, and wish.  In the same way, the high level fighter shouldn't simply be swining his sword harder and with more accuracy.  He should have epic stances, manuevers, special attacks, and stunts.


Here is the thing. I can agree fighters need to be more effective in fight, have more opinion and on, cool high level stuff, but I strongly disagree in fighers having cool stuff out of fight. You are a fighter, that's the main point, so do what you trained all wour life for: fight. You get bored just fighting? Pick another class.
And this goes for every class. You are a rogue? Then you cand o something in fight, but other classes will outshine you, and that's fair. You did not spend all your life learning to move in the battlefield. You can land bad injuries, but to do that you need tactical advantage, knowledge of pponent's weak spots and so on. But you truly shine out of the battle. And so on for rangers, bards, barbarians, monks and every class.
The problem is: magic can virtualy do everything, so a good spellcaster can be usefull in every situation, and sometimes even better. But as I belive this is fair, even good, I understand many people complaint.
There comes all the discussions. So I say, yes, i can see the point in powering up fighters, and, as much as I love realism for low level game, I accept superhuman things for high level. But I strongly disagree with people wanting to give figher the same tutility in every part of the game. You have a role, defined even by your class' name. Stick to it, and, if you get bored, change class, that's what I say.

High level casters have all these amazing things they can do with their spells, whereas the Fighter is still stuck doing the same things he did way back at 1st level.  He's just better at hitting now.  

Giving martial characters cool things to do is what should be most important in making them into classes that are viable and desireable to play all the way to max level.  Stances, manuevers, special attacks, stunts, all these things should be looked into.

This is the heart of the issue, and something that I think the designers will address.  A high level fighter should feel high level in the same way that a high level wizard does.  The high level wizard isn't just casting a more powerful  magic missile and burning hands.  They are casting time stop, meteor swarm, and wish.  In the same way, the high level fighter shouldn't simply be swining his sword harder and with more accuracy.  He should have epic stances, manuevers, special attacks, and stunts.


Here is the thing. I can agree fighters need to be more effective in fight, have more opinion and on, cool high level stuff, but I strongly disagree in fighers having cool stuff out of fight. You are a fighter, that's the main point, so do what you trained all wour life for: fight. You get bored just fighting? Pick another class.
And this goes for every class. You are a rogue? Then you cand o something in fight, but other classes will outshine you, and that's fair. You did not spend all your life learning to move in the battlefield. You can land bad injuries, but to do that you need tactical advantage, knowledge of pponent's weak spots and so on. But you truly shine out of the battle. And so on for rangers, bards, barbarians, monks and every class.
The problem is: magic can virtualy do everything, so a good spellcaster can be usefull in every situation, and sometimes even better. But as I belive this is fair, even good, I understand many people complaint.
There comes all the discussions. So I say, yes, i can see the point in powering up fighters, and, as much as I love realism for low level game, I accept superhuman things for high level. But I strongly disagree with people wanting to give figher the same tutility in every part of the game. You have a role, defined even by your class' name. Stick to it, and, if you get bored, change class, that's what I say.



Ugh. This right here is something I deem absolutely terrible.

D&D is a game. I'm here to play. If I want to be a fighter it's because I want to be a trained warrior who without magic can slay dragons and protect his allies from anything starting with orcs and ending with gods and primordials. It is not because I want to be able to only fight. Noone want to only be able to fight. I'm here to play, and if the situation is not fighting and I can only fight then I'm not playing. I'm barely participating. Most of the times I'll get bored and do disruptive things to the rest of the table.

I want every character to be able to contribute in all situations equally well. I don't want a class that is about fighting, nor a class that is about stealth. I want a class that when fighting is the cool guy who tanks the dragon and while socializing has a reassuring presence and can intimidate well, while the other class would be a skirmisher class in combat while being a silvertongue in socialization. I want parity in all aspects of the game.

EDIT: see post below for clarification. 
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Reflavoring: the change of flavor without changing any mechanical part of the game, no matter how small, in order to fit the mechanics to an otherwise unsupported concept. Retexturing: the change of flavor (with at most minor mechanical adaptations) in order to effortlessly create support for a concept without inventing anything new. Houseruling: the change, either minor or major, of the mechanics in order to better reflect a certain aspect of the game, including adapting the rules to fit an otherwise unsupported concept. Homebrewing: the complete invention of something new that fits within the system in order to reflect an unsupported concept.
Ideas for 5E
I want every character to be able to contribute in all situations equally well. I don't want a class that is about fighting, nor a class that is about stealth. I want a class that when fighting is the cool guy who tanks the dragon and while socializing has a reassuring presence and can intimidate well, while the other class would be a skirmisher class in combat while being a silvertongue in socialization. I want parity in all aspects of the game. 

That's fine, just don't impose this on those of us that choose to accept the fact that every character isn't supposed to be equal in every situation.  Personally, I think that you're likely to be disappointed anyhow.  There's just no way for Wizards to account for every situation.  Only DMs can address the situations and, even when that happens, only players can address how to make themselves effective.

Celebrate our differences.

I want every character to be able to contribute in all situations equally well. I don't want a class that is about fighting, nor a class that is about stealth. I want a class that when fighting is the cool guy who tanks the dragon and while socializing has a reassuring presence and can intimidate well, while the other class would be a skirmisher class in combat while being a silvertongue in socialization. I want parity in all aspects of the game. 

That's fine, just don't impose this on those of us that choose to accept the fact that every character isn't supposed to be equal in every situation.  Personally, I think that you're likely to be disappointed anyhow.  There's just no way for Wizards to account for every situation.  Only DMs can address the situations and, even when that happens, only players can address how to make themselves effective.



Sorry, I should have made it more clear. "Situation" is not intended as "any given scenario that might come up". It is intended as "broad (but not too much) categorization of encounters". The three pillars, if you wish, although I find those limiting.

Also, yeah, I'm probably going to be disappointed. But I care about this game and would like to see it better than it is now, and this is the way to do it in my opinion. 
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Reflavoring: the change of flavor without changing any mechanical part of the game, no matter how small, in order to fit the mechanics to an otherwise unsupported concept. Retexturing: the change of flavor (with at most minor mechanical adaptations) in order to effortlessly create support for a concept without inventing anything new. Houseruling: the change, either minor or major, of the mechanics in order to better reflect a certain aspect of the game, including adapting the rules to fit an otherwise unsupported concept. Homebrewing: the complete invention of something new that fits within the system in order to reflect an unsupported concept.
Ideas for 5E
As long as martial and arcane/divine/psionic have the potential to contribute equally to all three pillars in a way that doesn't completely invalidate one of the other groups(like no more have a Wizard, make a few scrolls, no need for Rogue), I'll be happy.

I say potential because obviosuly you can't make every group be equally amazing in all scenarios with every build. I want the options to be there, whether or not we want to use them.

So while a Fighter CAN be good at only fighting, he has other options available to him should he want to be useful at more than fighting without being required to start being magical, while at the same time leaving the "Me Grug only want FIGHT." build there for people who do want it.
As long as martial and arcane/divine/psionic have the potential to contribute equally to all three pillars in a way that doesn't completely invalidate one of the other groups(like no more have a Wizard, make a few scrolls, no need for Rogue), I'll be happy.

I say potential because obviosuly you can't make every group be equally amazing in all scenarios with every build. I want the options to be there, whether or not we want to use them.

So while a Fighter CAN be good at only fighting, he has other options available to him should he want to be useful at more than fighting without being required to start being magical, while at the same time leaving the "Me Grug only want FIGHT." build there for people who do want it.



This is what they tried to do in 4e.  Make it so that everyone can contribute at every level of play.  I think they took it a bit far though. I am hoping that 5th edition feels a bit more like 3rd, but with many of the improvements of 4th, as well as the lessons they've learned from 4e and Essentials.  The fighter does not need to be as powerful as the wizard.  The fighter merely needs to be as IMPORTANT and viable as the wizard, at all levels of play.  Ditto for the other classes.  I shouldn't feel like I am stuck with a gimped character at 20th level because the party wizard makes everything I do reduntant.  

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As long as martial and arcane/divine/psionic have the potential to contribute equally to all three pillars in a way that doesn't completely invalidate one of the other groups(like no more have a Wizard, make a few scrolls, no need for Rogue), I'll be happy.

I say potential because obviosuly you can't make every group be equally amazing in all scenarios with every build. I want the options to be there, whether or not we want to use them.

So while a Fighter CAN be good at only fighting, he has other options available to him should he want to be useful at more than fighting without being required to start being magical, while at the same time leaving the "Me Grug only want FIGHT." build there for people who do want it.



This is what they tried to do in 4e.  Make it so that everyone can contribute at every level of play.  I think they took it a bit far though. I am hoping that 5th edition feels a bit more like 3rd, but with many of the improvements of 4th, as well as the lessons they've learned from 4e and Essentials.  The fighter does not need to be as powerful as the wizard.  The fighter merely needs to be as IMPORTANT and viable as the wizard, at all levels of play.  Ditto for the other classes.  I shouldn't feel like I am stuck with a gimped character at 20th level because the party wizard makes everything I do reduntant.  




I haven't tried 3.5 or 3e yet, so I can't really judge on that. But, guess we'll just have to see what 5e has for this.

Here is the thing. I can agree fighters need to be more effective in fight, have more opinion and on, cool high level stuff, but I strongly disagree in fighers having cool stuff out of fight. You are a fighter, that's the main point, so do what you trained all wour life for: fight. You get bored just fighting? Pick another class.
And this goes for every class. You are a rogue? Then you cand o something in fight, but other classes will outshine you, and that's fair. You did not spend all your life learning to move in the battlefield. You can land bad injuries, but to do that you need tactical advantage, knowledge of pponent's weak spots and so on. But you truly shine out of the battle. And so on for rangers, bards, barbarians, monks and every class.
The problem is: magic can virtualy do everything, so a good spellcaster can be usefull in every situation, and sometimes even better. But as I belive this is fair, even good, I understand many people complaint.
There comes all the discussions. So I say, yes, i can see the point in powering up fighters, and, as much as I love realism for low level game, I accept superhuman things for high level. But I strongly disagree with people wanting to give figher the same tutility in every part of the game. You have a role, defined even by your class' name. Stick to it, and, if you get bored, change class, that's what I say.


So, Dave thinks knights are super cool.  Screw Dave.  He only gets to play when it's combat time.
Johnny likes thieves.  Screw Johnny.  He only gets to play when it isn't combat time.
Tim likes wizards.  Tim wins.  He gets to play all of the time, and he gets to be better than everyone else, too.

In what possible way is this fair?  How is it fair to have this much favoritism?  Especially along the lines of things like "Who do you want to be like more?  Conan or Harry Potter?"


I never thought I'd have to actually say it, but it isn't in any way an unreasonable requirement from a game that I be able to play it for the entire session.  This isn't a single player video game, where we're taking turns passing the controller around.  This is a game designed for a group.  Everyone in that group should be able to play it.


Seriously, though, you should check out the PbP Haven. You might also like Real Adventures, IF you're cool.
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Even though 4e aparently drove people crazy by giving fighters the same number and level of powers as casters had spells, it also suffered from that phenomenon.  The fighter has more powers than any other class, but the vast majority of them just do [W] damage and have the fighter dance around a little.  

I'm not arguing your main point, but the wizard (thanks to the endless stream of post-essentials mage builds and wizard subclasses) has surpased the fighter in number of powers, 417 to 416.  If we get any more 'Heroes of...' books, we can expect the wizard to pull further ahead.  

But, yes, wizard spells run the gamut - every condition, damage type, attack type and range (melee, ranged, close, area) - while fighter exploits are almost exclusively melee weapon and close burst 1 weapon powers.   The divide is only slightly less for other casters compared to other martial classes.

 

 

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The thing is, sure, the Wizard may have more toys, but....they aren't shockingingly more shiney/awesome than other classes are. In 3.x, Wizards had a nice computer, and could use it for all sorts of stuff....and non-casters had a baseball glove.

Gold is for the mistress, silver for the maid

Copper for the craftsman, cunning at his trade.

"Good!" said the Baron, sitting in his hall,

"But Iron -- Cold Iron -- is master of them all." -Kipling

 

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The thing is, sure, the Wizard may have more toys, but....they aren't shockingingly more shiney/awesome than other classes are. In 3.x, Wizards had a nice computer, and could use it for all sorts of stuff....and non-casters had a baseball glove.



And don't forget, not only did they get a computer, the computer has easy to find attachments that also let it double as a baseball glove, baseball bat, a catcher, and a pitcher.

Here is the thing. I can agree fighters need to be more effective in fight, have more opinion and on, cool high level stuff, but I strongly disagree in fighers having cool stuff out of fight. You are a fighter, that's the main point, so do what you trained all wour life for: fight. You get bored just fighting? Pick another class.
And this goes for every class. You are a rogue? Then you cand o something in fight, but other classes will outshine you, and that's fair. You did not spend all your life learning to move in the battlefield. You can land bad injuries, but to do that you need tactical advantage, knowledge of pponent's weak spots and so on. But you truly shine out of the battle. And so on for rangers, bards, barbarians, monks and every class.
The problem is: magic can virtualy do everything, so a good spellcaster can be usefull in every situation, and sometimes even better. But as I belive this is fair, even good, I understand many people complaint.
There comes all the discussions. So I say, yes, i can see the point in powering up fighters, and, as much as I love realism for low level game, I accept superhuman things for high level. But I strongly disagree with people wanting to give figher the same tutility in every part of the game. You have a role, defined even by your class' name. Stick to it, and, if you get bored, change class, that's what I say.


So, Dave thinks knights are super cool.  Screw Dave.  He only gets to play when it's combat time.
Johnny likes thieves.  Screw Johnny.  He only gets to play when it isn't combat time.
Tim likes wizards.  Tim wins.  He gets to play all of the time, and he gets to be better than everyone else, too.

In what possible way is this fair?  How is it fair to have this much favoritism?  Especially along the lines of things like "Who do you want to be like more?  Conan or Harry Potter?"


I never thought I'd have to actually say it, but it isn't in any way an unreasonable requirement from a game that I be able to play it for the entire session.  This isn't a single player video game, where we're taking turns passing the controller around.  This is a game designed for a group.  Everyone in that group should be able to play it.



One thing people don't get is: being of little use is NOT like not play. If you have to scout in serach of trap the rogue is the one rolling dice and doing the job, but dnd isn't only dice rolling. The bard is cooler then other in social situation, but that does NOT mean warrior are useless. And even if, mechanicaly, a warrior only shines in fighting, there still exist something called roleplaying. I loved my 3rd edtion bard and I found him cool even in fighting situation, where I was allmost useless.
And, as I said, I belive spellcaster should have more high level utility and less low level utility than other classes, but I understand that's something that other can not like. So I say, other ones stick to theire roles speaking about game mechanics, spellcaster should have two things: something like sorcerer, limited spells known, so nothing to say when situation doesn't involve some spell he can cast, or a wizard that has to play high prediction: fighting or utility? And what kind? If I prepair right spells I'll be as usefull as the best class, sometimes even more, if I'm wrong, then, just have fun roleplaying with the little use ones.
The problem Wizards had was that they could do dozens of things no martial character can do(martial without magic multiclass or similar stuff), IN ADDITION to doing everything they could do, usually much better than they could.

And the problem with that is...

If Class A can do X, Y, and Z
And Class B can do R, S, T, U, V, and W, IN ADDITION to X, Y, and Z, and does XYZ twice as well as Class A can hope of doing....

Then why does Class A even exist?
The problem Wizards had was that they could do dozens of things no martial character can do(martial without magic multiclass or similar stuff), IN ADDITION to doing everything they could do, usually much better than they could.

And the problem with that is...

If Class A can do X, Y, and Z
And Class B can do R, S, T, U, V, and W, IN ADDITION to X, Y, and Z, and does XYZ twice as well as Class A can hope of doing....

Then why does Class A even exist?



Cool design and funny rooleplaying? I keep taking 3rd edition bard:  there is nothing he can do better than others, and his tasks could be absoorbed and maybe even done better by rogues or wizards, it depends on what kind of bard you run. But still I loved to roleplay a bard.


Cool design and funny rooleplaying? I keep taking 3rd edition bard:  there is nothing he can do better than others, and his tasks could be absoorbed and maybe even done better by rogues or wizards, it depends on what kind of bard you run. But still I loved to roleplay a bard.



You can 'roleplay a bard' without taking the bard class.  You could have called a rogue a bard, or a wizard a bard, and been a better bard than the freakin' bard.

Not a good thing.
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