I'm going through full character creation for the first time, and I wanted to bring up any issues or confusion I have. This is just one character - I'm helping my son and friends generate a whole party over the next few days, so I'll hopefully do a few more of these.
- Rogue/Acrobat gives Climb Sheer Surfaces, but not the Climb skill. The Climb Sheer Surfaces Feat doesn’t mention giving the skill. Similarly, it looks like the Thief option gives Skill Focus (Sneak) without necessarily giving the Sneak skill.
- With a good stat, you can do crazy things. We built from die roll, and my son’s Halfling Thief happened to have a 20 DEX after creation. At level 1, he can average 9 damage with his bow (13 on sneak attack), which is kinda crazy. He’s going to waltz through Keep on the Borderlands.
- Why would a martial character who cares about combat choose anything but Weapon Mastery as their feat? Statistically, it has a dramatically larger effect on combat than anything else.
- There are various things that I think of as skills that have been divided into different areas – Pick Locks is part of the Thieves’ Tool proficiency, Pick Pockets is a feat, Sneak is still a skill. This was confusing for a bit – I thought my son’s rogue was lacking all of the basic Rogue skills. It turns out he’s just missing some.
- Beyond my confusion, I can see problems with ‘skills’ being divided into different fields. They’re all special abilities that often require a Characteristic check. But I can only apply “Skill Focus” to one category, not the others. In most versions of the game, there are various spells and items and Bard songs and so on that give skill bonuses – do those only apply to “skills”? How would gloves that give me a bonus to picking locks be phrased? Maybe that's why I've been seeing "DEX-based checks" and other equally awkward phrasing in various places.
- Halfling says its size S. It doesn’t say what this means in the game. I think it means very little except for some weapon choices, but it’d be nice to clarify that in any non-M race descriptions, especially since some other editions had more gameplay effects.
- My son’s Halfling Rogue Acrobat with STR 17 can jump 32’ (with his free Vault feat). The way I read the jump description (page 9), he runs at least 10’ and then goes 32’ more, all as part of one move action. Combined, that’s a lot faster than his movement speed (25’). The jump section doesn’t describe any drawbacks to this, so I could see him bouncing around combat all the time. Which would feel as silly as it does in FPS games.
- Alternately, the core Modes of Movement says you can combine movement types, deducting from your total until it’s used up. Which seems to contradict the jumping description on the next page. And I don’t know how this would work with mixed movement distances. If he can run 25’ and jump 32’, how does the deduction work? Am I supposed to do complex fractions to figure this out? Or does the Vault feat give me more jumping distance than I can ever reasonably use? (Since I have to deduct at least 10' to get going.)