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  • What combat builds have you found the most fun?

    I generally find 3rd Exalted combat quite fun (well, for about an hour, obviously it can drag on. Way less than 2nd ed combat though, probably because there's less multi-attacking).

    But my two current characters' combat builds I haven't found that fun (I actually find the combats fun, but not the charms they have, if you see what I mean).

    My Zenith, Brother Alazar, has almost all of Tiger Style (not the pinnacle), but I find rushes and ambushes don't come up that much (ambushes probably would if I'd built him for stealth, but I haven't, it's just Tiger Style has some Stealth attack charms), and so it mostly involves me going "hmmm, if I use these three or four charms to enhance this I can do a little bit more damage" which is a fairly large cognitive load for little benefit (also, he's terrible at getting through armour).

    My Full Moon is way better at combat, but, not including excellencies, she has 25 combat charms. Her build is Snake Style and Poison charms, with a bit of general Dex-enhancers, and... it's really over-complicated for not a ton of benefit I feel. In combat, I find myself constantly looking through a heap of charms trying to find what I want to do, and then when I hit someone and poison them... it's not all that interesting?


    Whereas my old No Moon, while not very good at combat, fought by turning into a bear, hippo, wolf, horse, giant rat with tentacles for arms, massive mutant monstrosity DBT, etc. That was reasonably simple (animals aren't simple, but once you've picked the one you're using in this fight, it's not too complex) but had plenty going on, and just kind of looked cool.

    And playing a stealth fighter, which I did a bit with my Night (he didn't have that many charms, and only used it in a couple of fights), seemed quite fun, but I didn't really get to grips with it so I'm not sure. I could see that it can be awkward when fighting alongside other PCs. Not sure.
    I also enjoyed fighting in a warstrider, but I only got to do that once. It seems to be one of those builds that's quite conditional (in the sense that most of the time you can't bring your warstrider to a fight).

    Grappling I've found over-complex (my players sigh and go "I've already made 3 rolls, now I've got to make more to do the actual damage?"), but the Solar charm where you throw your victim into another enemy and cause a huge shockwave, or use your victim to parry, are quite fun.


    So what combat builds have you found the most fun? What had the coolest moments and stunt fodder? Which did you find overly-complex or too conditional to be as good as you thought it'd be? Which were powerful but boring, or fun but weak?

    Oh, I'm also interested in people combining lots of Martial Arts. It's supposed to be really good, but I wonder if it's hard to keep track of at high-levels.

    (This question is about both Solars and Lunars. Though if you've got something to say about Dragonblood, go for it. I'm also interested in both Offence and Defence)
    Last edited by The Wizard of Oz; 08-31-2019, 02:12 PM.


    My characters:
    Dr Soma Vaidya, viper-totem Lunar and kung-fu doctor
    Brother Alazar, Zenith occultist and last survivor of the Black Monastery of Leng
    Shadow of Kings, Twilight barbarian scholar, master of lost First Age crafting techniques. Has a lot of clones. Picture by Jen.

  • #2
    I like Athletics Supernal on my Night. I can basically teleport all around the battlefield instantly and smash sorcerers or people in the backline, while not resorting to Stealth. (What kind of Night needs Stealth anyway ?).

    I think rushes and disengages are a really good idea but something feels poorly executed somewhere. I rarely see someone even attempting to disengage, thus most of the time making rush useless. I sense there should be something extremely dynamical in fights in Exalted, with the 3 warriors starting their fights in the middle of the street, then jumping on the rooftops nearby and then ending on top of tower at the center of the town, but it doesn't happen because I think combat movement prove too tedious and disadvantageous for the one who initiate it, so in the end it's much more like "I got you we don't move". My game of Dragon blooded had a bit more than this because people where a little more bit prone to flee or try to use the space differently, but from what I recall it usually proved a disaster for the one who tried to initiate the movement, thus confirming me in my thoughts it's usually a bad choice to resort to the mechanic.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Chausse View Post
      I think rushes and disengages are a really good idea but something feels poorly executed somewhere. I rarely see someone even attempting to disengage, thus most of the time making rush useless.
      I don't think Rush is supposed to be against Disengage (actually, I remember when I first read the rules finding Rush vs Disengage quite odd), it's just against people kiting. Ie it's to stop people running away from you with their normal movement. The way to stop Disengage is with higher dice rolls.

      I sense there should be something extremely dynamical in fights in Exalted, with the 3 warriors starting their fights in the middle of the street, then jumping on the rooftops nearby and then ending on top of tower at the center of the town, but it doesn't happen because I think combat movement prove too tedious and disadvantageous for the one who initiate it, so in the end it's much more like "I got you we don't move". My game of Dragon blooded had a bit more than this because people where a little more bit prone to flee or try to use the space differently, but from what I recall it usually proved a disaster for the one who tried to initiate the movement, thus confirming me in my thoughts it's usually a bad choice to resort to the mechanic.
      Generally I also find that to be the case, though possibly if you've built for it with Dodge charms it's good. I think it's just the fact that it's an action (so has to be flurried if you also want to attack) and costs 2i, and may not even work. But I've never played a character who was that good at Dodging anyway, in 3rd ed.

      In terms of dynamic cool movement... I find it mostly just has to be done with stunts. Because you're right, when people are in close combat they tend to stick there until one realises he or she is screwed and tries to flee. Which is arguably realistic, it's just not very in-genre.


      My characters:
      Dr Soma Vaidya, viper-totem Lunar and kung-fu doctor
      Brother Alazar, Zenith occultist and last survivor of the Black Monastery of Leng
      Shadow of Kings, Twilight barbarian scholar, master of lost First Age crafting techniques. Has a lot of clones. Picture by Jen.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by The Wizard of Oz View Post
        I don't think Rush is supposed to be against Disengage (actually, I remember when I first read the rules finding Rush vs Disengage quite odd), it's just against people kiting. Ie it's to stop people running away from you with their normal movement. The way to stop Disengage is with higher dice rolls.
        I agree and not agree at the same time. My point is if someone succesfully disengages you you can count on your rush to catch him afterwards. If he does not disengage, after the first rush/engage, there will be no rush, thus people not disengaging make rush useless.

        I agree with you, it's mostly through stunts that I see people move. I really wonder how I could give more opportunities for my players and NPCs to disengage and make it cool and dynamic. Maybe lower the cost of disengage or something.

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        • #5
          Oh btw sorry for the double post, but can you disengage while in Crash ? Or is it impossible because it costs initiative ?

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Chausse View Post
            Oh btw sorry for the double post, but can you disengage while in Crash ? Or is it impossible because it costs initiative ?
            I believe it's a penalty not a cost (page 194 calls it a cost, but page 198 states otherwise).

            Withdraw uses similiar langage and can explicitly be done whilst Crashed.

            So yes, you can still Disengage whilst Crashed.


            Hi, I'm JohnDoe244. My posts represent my opinions, not facts.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by JohnDoe244 View Post
              I believe it's a penalty not a cost (page 194 calls it a cost, but page 198 states otherwise).

              Withdraw uses similiar langage and can explicitly be done whilst Crashed.

              So yes, you can still Disengage whilst Crashed.
              Oh good to know thanks. This one bothered me for a bit.

              Comment


              • #8
                Whilst I haven't played it yet, I have an Earth Aspect Immaculate with Fist of Titans I'm looking forward to playing.

                It's pretty combat optimized (I'd give it 8/10), but plays straightforwardly: it's the same charms/tags enhancing every Withering attack so there's not a library of effects to memorize. And the Smashing tag keeps things interesting round-on-round as you knock foes Prone or into scenery etc.

                Originally posted by Chausse View Post
                I like Athletics Supernal on my Night. I can basically teleport all around the battlefield instantly and smash sorcerers or people in the backline, while not resorting to Stealth. (What kind of Night needs Stealth anyway ?).
                I like the idea of Supernal Athletics with Ebon Shadow and a side of Tiger.
                Last edited by JohnDoe244; 09-01-2019, 02:39 PM.


                Hi, I'm JohnDoe244. My posts represent my opinions, not facts.

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                • #9
                  Knocking people around is always nice and cinematic.


                  My characters:
                  Dr Soma Vaidya, viper-totem Lunar and kung-fu doctor
                  Brother Alazar, Zenith occultist and last survivor of the Black Monastery of Leng
                  Shadow of Kings, Twilight barbarian scholar, master of lost First Age crafting techniques. Has a lot of clones. Picture by Jen.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Yeah knocking back people is fun. Also I agree, grapple is too complicated. I might try to think oh a houserule to simplify it a bit

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      My favourite combat to date was a fire and earth aspect duking it out to blow off some steam. My little fire aspect was trying his hardest against the higher essence earth aspect and I ended up only really using three charms. The excellency, the clash charm, and Dragon Graced Weapon to switch out my melee weapon each turn and take advantage of different tags.

                      Was it the optimal thing to do? Probably not, but it was hells of fun and a super dynamic fight that was less about killing each other and rather just subduing the raging earth.


                      My Homebrew: Architect of the Regal Puppet Style (WIP) || Monkey Style || Radiant Halo of Incandescent Might || Pale Driver, Ruination of the Edifice of Tyranny || Sublime Percussion, Just a Whole lot of Fun || Idris, The Graceful Heart of Purpose

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Elkovash View Post
                        My favourite combat to date was a fire and earth aspect duking it out to blow off some steam. My little fire aspect was trying his hardest against the higher essence earth aspect and I ended up only really using three charms. The excellency, the clash charm, and Dragon Graced Weapon to switch out my melee weapon each turn and take advantage of different tags.

                        Was it the optimal thing to do? Probably not, but it was hells of fun and a super dynamic fight that was less about killing each other and rather just subduing the raging earth.
                        I’m not sure a weapon tag ever came up in our games.

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                        • #13
                          As far as moving around goes, you can reposition yourself within your range band without taking a move action, so you can stunt flipping over someone or bouncing off a wall or taking a couple of steps back before lunging at them without actually “moving.” There are also charms that allow you to disengage for free and attack charms which require you to move from short range to close as part of the attack, so buying those charms might help promote a more acrobatics combat style.


                          ....

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                          • #14
                            My most fun combats in Exalted so far have probably been the ones in my mortal campaign, and the one where I was playing a Dawn MA supernal who started the game with 3 dex and 1 Brawl. So, probably nothing to do with combat build exactly. I found in those cases people cared about weapon tags, there was a lot of fun back-and-forth in the fights, and one time as the Dawn I was going to get my ass kicked by a mortal fighter, so I had to use my Solar Athletics to pick up an enormous wooden cart, and set it down on top of him like a cage.

                            Taking the pretty obvious part of that out of the equation, some of the most fun I've had has been with brawlers, for the above mentioned fun of just knocking people around. The grapple rolls are somewhat lengthy, but with practice you can get through them fairly smoothly. Just don't do it every round. I've also had lots of fun playing around with Immaculate styles on DBs, Air Dragon does a lot of movement stuff, Water Dragon is kind of fun with its ability to drain essence and choosing to flurry defense with attacks and stuff.

                            I've also had some decent fun with Archery, just because at the start of the fight you need to get to distance, or plan for that while you're suspecting a fight and maybe hang back, but who knows if that's not just the worst idea because maybe there's a rear ambush coming or something. Then once there you can kind of play with movement and range bands a lot more, either by aiming at enemy archers, or shooting and retreating to medium range, then next turn jumping back to close and firing again.

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                            • #15
                              I haven’t had a chance to play them yet (small island nation woes) but in no particular order I am most pleased with the following Lunar builds I came up with:

                              1. Death Kitty- The Black Cat of (Dragonblooded) misfortune! Highest Charmless Resting Accuracy in the game (probably). Also, super easy to access.

                              2. Knight of Bone and Ivory - Highest Resting Soak in the game (probably), also Predator’s Menace opening gambit is very strong and super easy to access.

                              3. Aguile Ofidiano, Mistress of Creations most powerful Force: Gravity. A Quetzalcoatl Lucha Libre themed build that can just repeatedly slam you into the ground round after round for no-Soak guaranteed damage. Vicious.
                              Last edited by prototype00; 09-03-2019, 09:22 AM.

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