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A Not-Quite-Newb's Read-through of Ex3

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  • One playable race per book has been White Wolf's MO since day 1.

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    • Originally posted by Totentanz View Post


      This thread has taught me that anyone new to Exalted needs to read Ex3, then post on the forum and wait for you to fill in the blanks.
      I like to consider myself a helper, and I like helping people get interested in a product that I quite enjoy.


      Disclaimer: I'll huff, grump, and defend my position, but if you're having fun I'll never say you're doing it wrong.

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      • Originally posted by Elfive View Post
        One playable race per book has been White Wolf's MO since day 1.
        Is that good enough for people not familiar with White Wolf? The D&D etc crowd set a fair bit of store on races in my experience, & Exalted needs to expand its appeal.


        A Not-Quite-Newb's Read-Through of Ex3 - my thoughts, notes and trials and tribulations with the Exalted 3rd edition rules.
        Ex3 Reference Materials - currently includes an ST screen, common actions sheet, weapons reference sheet, character creation summary and mortal QCs reference sheet.

        Comment


        • The issue a bit is how Exalts work. They are meant to play on interpretations of Abilty and Talent in different ways, but a way that would get every Exalt in the corebook likely would do so wiht a very different feel than Exalted currently has. It is hard to do other Exalt sorts all in one book without it basically being some knock-off of Mutants & Masterminds I feel.

          (I know that folks will likely chide in that Godbound's themed Godbound do it, but I actually feel Godbound kind of demonstrates this to me in a way that I don't like, as everyone's basically using the same powers reskinned or limited. And that it actually in the end does feel a bit of a M&M knock-off to me as a result. Which is why I like it for homebrew settings but likely won't ever use it for Exalted.)

          Exalted also partially avoids the issues of not having every Exalt sort with how it casts them too. It presents each as a Host in itself, with cultures and complicated stuff to them just beyond the book to talk all at once in depth. And it is clear and upfront in the chargen section at least, as well as how it presents itself about Solars, that the main goal of the corebook is to sell you on that as the default play style, rather than treating Solars and Lunars like humans and elves who could be in any game assumed by default.

          And stuff.


          And stuff.
          My DeviantArt Page // My tumblr // Exalted 3e Houserules

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          • Originally posted by Xerxes View Post
            Is that good enough for people not familiar with White Wolf? The D&D etc crowd set a fair bit of store on races in my experience, & Exalted needs to expand its appeal.
            It's a bit tougher than it is with D&D races. Because your type of Exalt is, in many ways, even bigger a distinction than your race, class, background, and your entire spell library and feats available is with D&D.

            Two Exalts of different types (Sidereals and Solars, let's say) will feel VERY different.

            Two Exalts of the same type (two Solars) will almost certainly feel very different.

            Two Exalts of the same type and Caste (Two Dawns) can still feel very different.

            Depending on charm choices and the rest of their build, two Exalts of the same type and Caste and even same rough focus can still feel different. (A Melee Dawn focused more on all-out-assault and uses Resistance as a backup versus a Dawn who uses defensive Melee Charms with some focus on War to buff their soldiers)

            I have a lot of grumbles about Exalted's formatting... But each splat needing its own book? That I never really questioned because it feels very justified.


            Disclaimer: I'll huff, grump, and defend my position, but if you're having fun I'll never say you're doing it wrong.

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            • Yeah, I mean two exalts of the same cast can have as few as two caste abilities in common. If one or both of them focuses on the other three primarily, you can have characters with almost nothing in common.

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              • Originally posted by Xerxes View Post
                Is that good enough for people not familiar with White Wolf? The D&D etc crowd set a fair bit of store on races in my experience, & Exalted needs to expand its appeal.
                I know it was a hiccup for my newbie group. I even ended up making a thread asking how the game is actually playable without the other "races" considering how integral they are to the setting.


                Genius templates: Super Science Mini-Template for Demon: the Descent

                Oracle the Endbringers: Time-Manipulator Fan-Splat

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                • Originally posted by milo v3 View Post
                  I even ended up making a thread asking how the game is actually playable without the other "races," considering how integral they are to the setting.
                  To certain parts of the setting. As an ST new to the world I'm really quite glad that things are reasonably disconnected, so you can tell stories that focus on one area without having to bring in everything else.


                  A Not-Quite-Newb's Read-Through of Ex3 - my thoughts, notes and trials and tribulations with the Exalted 3rd edition rules.
                  Ex3 Reference Materials - currently includes an ST screen, common actions sheet, weapons reference sheet, character creation summary and mortal QCs reference sheet.

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                  • Originally posted by Xerxes View Post

                    To certain parts of the setting. As an ST new to the world I'm really quite glad that things are reasonably disconnected, so you can tell stories that focus on one area without having to bring in everything else.
                    Over a year's experience with people familiar with the SETTING, but were all equally new to the game itself?

                    I was able to give them all a great experience with just the characters in the Antagonist section, and some spawned characters that ranged from "Mortal" to "Mortal Sorcerer Here And There" to "Some Dragonbloods" and "Maybe a Sid or Two".

                    Edit: And again, can't stress this enough, saying it's "Just Solars" is doing the variety of Solars a huge disservice.


                    Disclaimer: I'll huff, grump, and defend my position, but if you're having fun I'll never say you're doing it wrong.

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                    • Originally posted by Kyman201 View Post
                      Two Exalts of the same type and Caste (Two Dawns) can still feel very different.
                      Case in point, my group has two Night castes. One is a sneaky assassin, while the other is a master of information gathering. They have almost no overlap in Charms and feel like incredibly different characters as far as capabilities go, not to mention their very different personalities.

                      Just Solars can give as much breadth of character variety as most games give in their corebook.

                      And I've run games successfully using mostly spirits and fair folk as antagonists. Didn't even need other Exalt types.


                      Book of the Emerald Circle
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                      • Originally posted by Kyman201 View Post

                        I like to consider myself a helper, and I like helping people get interested in a product that I quite enjoy.

                        And 99.9% of the time, I'm totally on board with that. But when you come in and give answers to all the questions, then we miss the opportunity for insight into how the book reads to fresh eyes. Right now, every time the OP raises a question, you're there to supply him with another 1E/2E/forum chestnut/dev quote. You don't see how that could potentially taint the value as this read-through continues?

                        I'm not suggesting we all sit here quietly and say nothing, but rather that you consider carefully what "answers" you give and when you give them. We could all learn a great deal from a new fan's opinion, if we don't fill up his/her mind with our time-worn responses right off the bat.

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                        • Originally posted by Totentanz View Post
                          I'm not suggesting we all sit here quietly and say nothing, but rather that you consider carefully what "answers" you give and when you give them. We could all learn a great deal from a new fan's opinion, if we don't fill up his/her mind with our time-worn responses right off the bat.
                          In my defense, he wasn't likely to get an answer about Getimians from the book itself.


                          Disclaimer: I'll huff, grump, and defend my position, but if you're having fun I'll never say you're doing it wrong.

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                          • Originally posted by Kyman201 View Post
                            Edit: And again, can't stress this enough, saying it's "Just Solars" is doing the variety of Solars a huge disservice.
                            Not necessarily, I mean, my group finds Solars the least interesting Exalted because of how they are just suddenly there and have no real motivation in of itself. So "Just Solars" is a reasonable thing to say, since our enjoyment is rather diminished until Dragonblooded comes out, there being just solars is a factor.

                            Though, I should say that for more standard races (rather than considering Exalts as races [they're more like classes to me than a race]), the supernatural merits seem rather useful.
                            Last edited by milo v3; 05-01-2016, 07:41 PM.


                            Genius templates: Super Science Mini-Template for Demon: the Descent

                            Oracle the Endbringers: Time-Manipulator Fan-Splat

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                            • Originally posted by milo v3 View Post
                              Though, I should say that for more standard races (rather than considering Exalts as races [they're more like classes to me than a race]), the supernatural merits seem rather useful.
                              Yeah, Type of Exalt and Caste are more like classes than Races, in D&D senses. The Supernatural merits can add some variety, like someone with "Keen Senses (Hearing)" could be fluffed as some kind of beastman that was Chosen by the Sun.


                              Disclaimer: I'll huff, grump, and defend my position, but if you're having fun I'll never say you're doing it wrong.

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                              • To finish off the disjointed section on combat, here are my thoughts on Battle Groups.

                                Before I start on this, though, the sidebar on p.205 needs mentioning. It's a really good sidebar, and more fuss needs to be made of it. I can see a lot of new players seeing the game in the classic "players vs GM" paradigm, where Exalted can't really function as that. This point needed to be brought home earlier, and in more than just one sidebar. Defeat comes in multiple forms, and this is a great sidebar to explain that in the context of combat, it but it almost feels like too little, too late. I can see several games going to pieces because PCs grind everything that opposes them into the dust, and then get frustrated when there's nothing left to interact with.

                                Battle Groups
                                • The Quick Overview is a good outline of the process as a whole. Ex3 in general is really good at giving a skeleton of a process that then gets meat added to it.
                                Battle Group Traits
                                • There may be differences between Battle Group traits and single character traits, but doe that mean everything else goes out of the window? I felt like I wanted to see a whole Battle Group "character sheet" as well as having the new traits introduced, so that I could see what was kept as well as what was added/altered.
                                • How big does each Size have to be, as a minimum? Not as an amount of troops, but in terms of area occupied? I don't think a Size 5 battle group could effectively be a Size 5 battle group in a 4-foot wide corridor, but there's nothing to gainsay that in this section.
                                Nice and simple section overall, quite clear on what each attribute represents, but as said above, relating Size to more than just a number of bodies would have helped that little bit more.

                                Fighting Battle Groups
                                • Why can't battle groups take initiative from other characters? I know they only do withering damage, but it means that they will get into a spiral where they will always act last against single combatants, won't it?
                                • If they can't take initiative from other characters, do they still get it if they crash an opponent? On a first read I thought not, but a second time round the option seems open.
                                • Good distinction between Withering and Decisive damage applied to BGs, but I can see this getting lost in actual play.
                                • Can dissolved BGs move through other friendly BGs? Feels like they should be able to as they're scattering, but it's not specified anywhere.
                                • The rest of this section (the Command Actions and Complications sections) seem simple enough, apart from Perfect Morale also being called Fearless. It's fairly obvious, but sticking to one or the other would make life clearer.
                                Overall this section is good, but suffers from a lack of concrete examples and placing it in context of other combat rules. It actually felt like someone entirely different was writing it, while most of the other sections felt unified. While I liked the clearer language, it's not necessarily a good thing when it doesn't connect to other sections quite so well.

                                Strategic Warfare
                                • Modifiers to the roll feel like very good plot fodder.
                                • The headings for this section (Modifiers, Strategems etc) feel like the "wrong level" - the font is the same as Strategic Warfare in general, rather than the teal colour of the next level down, which I think they should be.
                                • The spacing on some of the modifiers is off.
                                • Opposed rolling for the strategems feels odd - unless the opposing general is directly trying to counter your moves (say by occupying the same high ground), surely the main deciding factor in its execution should be whether the troops are disciplines enough to carry it out? I would feel a bit more comfortable if this was a map-based movement so that players could engage in more strategy here. But that may just be the wargamer in me jumping up and down.
                                • The strategems also feel a little fuzzily defined in an otherwise quite tight section. What does "vastly more effective than normal" mean for slaughter actions, for example?
                                • Skip It sidebar is in entirely the wrong place. The situations it describes have nothing to do with battle groups, let alone strategic warfare. It's a very good and useful sidebar, it just needs rehoming so that it can be loved properly.
                                This section, while good, feels intimidating to start with. Seeing it as its own thing is great, but it needs to be more connected to other combat actions that it semi-references throughout, in order to make things clearer. The strategic warfare section feels like a very good source of plot hooks, but attitude leaves certain places vaguer than I feel comfortable with. STs could benefit from more guidelines on these effects.

                                Next up, Social Influence!
                                Last edited by Xerxes; 05-02-2016, 10:37 AM.


                                A Not-Quite-Newb's Read-Through of Ex3 - my thoughts, notes and trials and tribulations with the Exalted 3rd edition rules.
                                Ex3 Reference Materials - currently includes an ST screen, common actions sheet, weapons reference sheet, character creation summary and mortal QCs reference sheet.

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