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  • #61
    So hypothetical alternative: Anyone can be trained in Style Ability dots, but you need the Supernatural Martial Artist merit before you can buy your first MA Charm.

    Better?

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    • #62
      Generally, though it calls into question why this is a Merit. It seems like it would be better just take the idea of initiation Charms from 2e and just have a universal starting MA Charm with some minor variations mostly for flavor for different ways of having come into supernatural MA. The Charm actually doing something gets rid of the "tax" issue, and you don't even have to worry about what Styles your character is going to focus on if that's something you intended to develop in-play.

      Eating up a Charm slot is a big deal (to most people probably a bigger deal than Merit dots) as far as gating goes. Bonus points its the same price for a 4 point Merit and a favored Charm. It's a relatively small savings fir you were buying it with XP. Though it raises the issue of if you can buy it with Solar XP or not.

      The idea of giving a free Charm with the Merit is OK, but most of the value of the Merit is then the Charm you get.

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      • #63
        I actually really like the initiation charm idea, it helps create a difference between MA and other forms of combat while not just sucking for the player.

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        • #64
          Originally posted by Blackwell View Post
          So hypothetical alternative: Anyone can be trained in Style Ability dots, but you need the Supernatural Martial Artist merit before you can buy your first MA Charm.

          Better?
          if you want to push that further you can even allow Charms to be bought for Style Abilities as normal BUT

          - You can not spend [Exalted] xp on MA Charms
          - Different Style Abilities count as different abilities so you cannot combine Charms across styles

          that would eliminate most of the edge over other Charm options that the MA Merit investment is largely paying for. It would make the Merit unnecessary for players who want to dabble in one specific thematic style that fits their character, but a necessary investment for tactically optimized centrally Martial Artist characters.


          Check out my expansion to the Realm of Brass and Shadow

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          • #65
            I still have yet to see what actual value the Merit brings. There's really nothing special in MA that requires a tax to balance out.


            Please be warned: this is not champagne, this is most likely a duck.
            -Chausse

            Message me for Japanese translations.

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            • #66
              The value has been explained, even if you don't agree with the original devs on how much that value is really worth. The playtests showing MA was too cheap is a "real" problem, not a hypothetical one... the whole point of playtests is to find problems and address them. Disagree with the value the RAW rate that as all you want, but saying there's been not case made for there being some sort of gate isn't accurate.

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              • #67
                I agree that there should be some gate, though I also agree that the RAW setup isn't really my favorite. I personally am fond of both "just reduce the cost" and "full normal cost but you get a free MA Charm with it"; neither are perfect but they've worked pleasantly for my purposes and that's been good enough on my end.

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                • #68
                  Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
                  The value has been explained, even if you don't agree with the original devs on how much that value is really worth. The playtests showing MA was too cheap is a "real" problem, not a hypothetical one... the whole point of playtests is to find problems and address them. Disagree with the value the RAW rate that as all you want, but saying there's been not case made for there being some sort of gate isn't accurate.
                  Going back to Page 1:

                  Originally posted by Kelly Pedersen View Post
                  I wasn't part of the playtest for Ex3, but I'm told that what happened, when there wasn't a Martial Artist merit, everybody basically bought martial arts styles. It's basically combat charms that you can spend Solar XP on, which makes it extremely competitive, if not purely better, than the native Solar combat Abilities, if there's no extra buy-in via the merit.
                  Bold emphasis mine. So far these playtest reports are all "Well I wasn't there but..." and "Solar XP". Meanwhile, in this thread, those of us who dropped the merit entirely (myself included) haven't noticed a change in power levels, which is Actual Play Experience. Does anyone have a link to the actual playtesters talking about this?

                  I don't agree that the argument "well you can dip into many styles" is worth anything because there are no MA 1 dot charms, and only one or two 2 dot charms in each Style, so you already have to run a build like Snake 2 /Tiger 3 /Ebon Shadow 2 to get the low hanging fruit... which you could have just done with Athletics or Stealth. Form Charms are probably the strongest MA exclusive you get and yet it hasn't really been brought up that much (they also require MA 4 across the board***). Even then, aside from SIngle Point, most form charms are some version "extra damage" or "extra defense". Even still, So What? Who Cares? If you aren't a Dawn, than the number of available charms for your precious Solar XP is severely gated behind your Essence. If you are a Dawn, then going multi-MA is a style choice, because the standard Brawl Grappler or Melee Swordsman is a much stronger build anyway. And this circles around to my post on page 1: If Solar XP was such a problem just don't let Solar XP be used on MA Charms.

                  At the risk of besmirching the hard work of the Ex3 team, I'm sorry to say this but, I honestly don't think the devs really had a good handle on balance in the first place and we should be taking their opinions with a grain of salt. Remember this thread on heavy weapons? The many threads about how poor the Naval Combat system is? The Skill that shall not be named? So forgive me if I don't put a lot of weight into Developer Playtest Experience, let alone Secondhand Developer Playtest Experience.


                  ***Righteous Devil alone takes 3, which seems like an accident
                  Last edited by Sorcerous Overlord; 09-09-2020, 07:42 PM.


                  Please be warned: this is not champagne, this is most likely a duck.
                  -Chausse

                  Message me for Japanese translations.

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                  • #69
                    OK. Seriously. So what?

                    The vast majority of the posters in the thread seem to agree the Merit is bad. Whether they think gating is completely unnecessary, or they think some gating is appropriate, the clear majority say a Merit tax was the wrong way to do it.

                    What does debating the validity of reports about the playtest do? What does trying to assert one group's play experience as more important than different group's play experience? It's entirely possible different groups have different experiences with the same mechanics.

                    Your position has been stated. You don't have to agree with people that think there should be some gating to help come up with a better gate than the original devs did. Where are you trying to go with this then?

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                    • #70
                      Originally posted by Sorcerous Overlord View Post
                      I still have yet to see what actual value the Merit brings. There's really nothing special in MA that requires a tax to balance out.
                      1) you can spend Solar/Dragon/etc xp on it

                      2) you can combine charms across styles for a degree of tactical syncronicity that a normal Ability Charm set does not facilitate

                      Note that as I said before your post though, BOTH OF THESE ADVANTAGES ARE EASY TO REMOVE for a MA dabbler or single-style specialist who isn’t taking advantage of them and doesn’t want to pay the entry fee.


                      Check out my expansion to the Realm of Brass and Shadow

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                      • #71
                        It basically lets you start buying evocations for your hands, as I think somebody brought up in this thread earlier.

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                        • #72
                          Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
                          OK. Seriously. So what?

                          The vast majority of the posters in the thread seem to agree the Merit is bad. Whether they think gating is completely unnecessary, or they think some gating is appropriate, the clear majority say a Merit tax was the wrong way to do it.

                          (1)What does debating the validity of reports about the playtest do? (2)What does trying to assert one group's play experience as more important than different group's play experience? (3)It's entirely possible different groups have different experiences with the same mechanics.

                          Your position has been stated. You don't have to agree with people that think there should be some gating to help come up with a better gate than the original devs did. (4)Where are you trying to go with this then?
                          Numbers are mine. let's address those in order.

                          1) The topic of this thread is about a merit tax, which is justified entirely on playtest results none of us have ever seen or had a firsthand account of.
                          2) This justification doesn't match the experience of current players.
                          3) A meaningless addition, that maxim holds true of almost every system of every rpg.
                          4) Explaining my rationale to your assertation that MA comboing was a "real" problem.

                          I feel that further discussion isn't going to be productive since, if I have this right, your stance is that since my opinion is stated and therefore I don't need to discuss it further. If that's not your position I apologize, but regardless, I don't think this thread is gonna go anywhere. As you said, most of us stand in strong opposition to the Martial Arts Merit.

                          This is also getting a little heated, so I'd just like to take a step back and thank everyone who contributed so far.
                          Edit: I just had to add when i saw this:
                          Originally posted by DrLoveMonkey View Post
                          It basically lets you start buying evocations for your hands, as I think somebody brought up in this thread earlier.
                          best Sentence I've read all day. I'd be a lot more accepting of the Martial Arts merit if it made your hands/legs whatever into artifact damage form weapons
                          Last edited by Sorcerous Overlord; 09-09-2020, 10:56 PM.


                          Please be warned: this is not champagne, this is most likely a duck.
                          -Chausse

                          Message me for Japanese translations.

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                          • #73
                            Originally posted by Sorcerous Overlord View Post
                            I'd be a lot more accepting of the Martial Arts merit if it made your hands/legs whatever into artifact damage form weapons
                            That's...maybe a bit too far. They'd be artifact weapons that not only never give away that you're armed, but also don't let everyone know you're Exalted/Anathema, don't take attunement motes, and can't be taken from you.

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                            • #74
                              Originally posted by DrLoveMonkey View Post

                              That's...maybe a bit too far. They'd be artifact weapons that not only never give away that you're armed, but also don't let everyone know you're Exalted/Anathema, don't take attunement motes, and can't be taken from you.
                              Those are good points. Mostly for attunement and social stealth. I don't think I've ever seen a player disarmed in game, and glove weapons or shoes are usually immune to that. Maybe they light up when you channel your Snake Style essence into them "Green Hand of the Serpent" style. But i'm just spitballing here.


                              Please be warned: this is not champagne, this is most likely a duck.
                              -Chausse

                              Message me for Japanese translations.

                              Comment


                              • #75
                                Originally posted by Sorcerous Overlord View Post
                                I don't think I've ever seen a player disarmed in game, and glove weapons or shoes are usually immune to that.
                                I have disarmed a player once or twice, but I may also be an outlier. I've basically never used cover but I'm trying to in the future and other people might use it all the time. The real place I see people being disarmed is when they're being forcibly disarmed, or disarmed by social pressure or tradition, to go to an event.

                                Originally posted by Sorcerous Overlord View Post
                                Maybe they light up when you channel your Snake Style essence into them "Green Hand of the Serpent" style. But i'm just spitballing here.
                                That could work. If you had to attune them and they covered your limbs in energy, but couldn't be taken away that might be a good kind of attunement bonus for an artifact 4 weapon. Imagine them like artifact shortswords who's attunement bonus is to vanish to Elsewhere until recalled. Basically Call the Blade for free.

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