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  • #16
    Originally posted by Cain Loup-Noir View Post

    In fact what my friends want is stability when they use their powers, at least when they're in calm situation instead of getting one time 1 success and other time 4 when they have big pool.
    The easiest way but the longest is to rewrite each powers to give them fix effect, this way pc wojld roll only when their pool is lower than the difficulty.
    The fastest but hardest is to rewrite the auto-success system or houserule something for powers only
    An idea i've had when a power need a roll and need only one success to work you don't roll if you have the same pool as the difficulty. When the effect are defined by the number of succes then you turn that number into fix difficulty. The base would be 6 to the equivalent of 1 success, 7 is equal to 2 success, 8 = 3 and 10 is equal to 5. Spending willpower allow to get the 6th. If you have less than 6 dice then you must roll to atteign only the first success and have the basic minimal effects.

    Problem is that some power use at the same time difficulty and number of success (the jam technology gift is a good exemple).
    Outside of stressful situations, I would just have them succeed. No need to roll. Just let them state what they intend to do and narrate the outcome. You can use the dice pools of any opponents to adjust the outcome without rolling (so, for evenly matched opponents, the outcome may be less impressive). Against humans, I would just have the best outcome usually happen, though.

    But take half does this, as well. If you have 10 dice, you get 5 successes. If you have two, you get one.

    The auto-succeed if 'dice equal to difficulty' thing is the standard rule for automatic success in V20 and earlier anyway.


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    • #17
      Also, I would second Requiem 2e as a good system. In that, you roll Attribute + Skill + Discipline for most Disciplines, which means that they will nearly always beat humans by default (who will just use Attribute + Skill). Success is on 8+, so the numbers work out as 0.33 successes per die, so you'd have to use 'take a third' instead of 'take half', but a lot of lower level Discipline powers don't require rolls and are very powerful anyway.


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      • #18
        Originally posted by adambeyoncelowe View Post

        Outside of stressful situations, I would just have them succeed. No need to roll. Just let them state what they intend to do and narrate the outcome.
        There's some issue doing so, what if a garou pc prepare an ambush and activate a gift like troll skin? That gift has no limit outside of the pool itself, so if the pc activate it before any fight or stressful situation to get ready, you let him get as many soaking dot than his dice pool?
        For some powers it work well (aura detection...), for other letting the character get what he want is quite overpowered (Alienation, Domination, Elementary creation, Mother's touch...)

        A second option to the take half is to modify the auto success system, maybe keep it as it is when you have less dice than difficulty (1 willpower point to 1 auto success), and modify it when you have as many dice than difficulty, maybe give 2 auto success without willpower in calm situation an with willpower in stressful situation. Then if you have higher dice pool the auto success is 3 without willpower in calm situation and with willpower in stressful situation. That's generally enough success for majority powers to get the effect wanted and is in accordance with the degree of success. After all that seems strange that a pc or npc with 9 dice only get 1 auto success on a lower difficulty action, while he has the capacity to completely succeed in such a simple action for him.
        Last edited by Cain Loup-Noir; 08-29-2022, 04:35 PM.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by Cain Loup-Noir View Post

          There's some issue doing so, what if a garou pc prepare an ambush and activate a gift like troll skin? That gift has no limit outside of the pool itself, so if the pc activate it before any fight or stressful situation to get ready, you let him get as many soaking dot than his dice pool?
          For some powers it work well (aura detection...), for other letting the character get what he want is quite overpowered (Alienation, Domination, Elementary creation, Mother's touch...)

          A second option to the take half is to modify the auto success system, maybe keep it as it is when you have less dice than difficulty (1 willpower point to 1 auto success), and modify it when you have as many dice than difficulty, maybe give 2 auto success without willpower in calm situation an with willpower in stressful situation. Then if you have higher dice pool the auto success is 3 without willpower in calm situation and with willpower in stressful situation. That's generally enough success for majority powers to get the effect wanted and is in accordance with the degree of success. After all that seems strange that a pc or npc with 9 dice only get 1 auto success on a lower difficulty action, while he has the capacity to completely succeed in such a simple action for him.
          In my head, the suggestion to let players achieve what they need to when there's no stress wasn't about conflicts -- which are inherently stressful. It was more about keeping the game moving when failure would derail things.

          For me, I would assess whether a roll would be stressful for either the character OR the player, and if it would be, then you roll. But you'll need to determine what's right for your table, and then stick to that. Maybe come up with a framework that works for you.

          So you have some decision points you need to consider, and here's how I'd do it:

          1. Is the outcome and/or opponent important, and is the situation tense for the characters or their players? Then roll. One roll to represent multiple rounds of combat, debate or whatever, is perfectly valid.
          2. Is the outcome important, but the opponent is trivial? Or is the outcome trivial, even if the opponent is important? Have the PC roll and the NPC take half.
          3. Is the outcome trivial and the opponent trivial? Or is the situation low-risk and low-stress for the characters and players? Just let it happen if the PC has the required knowledge/training. Let the PC say what they intend to do, and just agree a fair outcome based on that (they don't have to get exactly what they want, but it should favour the PC). Or take half for both parties and compare the results for your outcome.

          I think commonsense prevails. The planning of the ambush is low stakes, but the ambush itself isn't and it's important to know how many successes the Garou rolls. So I would just make the Garou roll for that Gift. You also said it yourself that you can tell which of those Gifts need a roll and which don't (i.e., it's the ones that would be overpowered without a roll).

          I think part of the problem you're running into is that you seem to want to remove rolling for *all* powers at all times. And the system just isn't designed to handle that, so that's why it's breaking down when you try to do that.

          When playing a game, dice rolls are there to add a random element, and thus tension and suspense. They also add complications at unexpected times. I wouldn't eschew the dice when the outcome is important or when auto-success makes things too easy -- only when you need to move the story forward and the risk of failure isn't interesting. So it's about being more judicious with your dice rolls, rather than getting rid of them altogether.

          There are also a few other handy tools for any ST to reduce rolling in the places where dice are less important:

          1. Let it ride. If you called for a Perception roll this scene already, let that ride for the rest of the scene unless the circumstances change. So don't make them keep rolling when they've already passed, unless they want to try something different. If they failed the first time, let them try again, but ask how they try something different this time around and/or increase the difficulty.
          2. Trivial humans shouldn't be a concern most of the time. Just let things happen to them that seem fair and appropriate. Let vamps just Dominate mortals unless the chance of failure would be fun -- e.g., if you really need to get a guard out of the way to steal an important artifact from a museum, that requires a roll. But if you have already subdued the guard and just want to erase his memory, maybe just let it happen. At that point, you don't need to keep milking the action with further dice rolls. If this seems too generous, let them spend a WP point in addition to the usual cost in order to not have to roll. That balances it a bit.
          3. One-roll conflict can be really handy when you want to move past any kind of confrontation quickly. VTR2e has rules for how to do this even with Discipline use, and I think they're better than V5's version of the same rules. Just let everyone pick a single dice pool that represents their general approach to achieving their goal in combat (the goal doesn't have to be to kill someone; it can be rescuing someone, escaping, subduing someone, etc). Add modifiers based on any other tools, equipment or circumstances in their favour. Have everyone roll and then narrate the outcome based on that. It doesn't have to be a clear "you win", because the goals may not always be opposed, so the results can be less binary: "You achieve your goal, no problem, but your enemy achieves this part of his own goal too; here are the consequences of that..."

          If you reduce the number of rolls in the places where they're boring, the players won't mind rolling for powers (or anything else) at important points in the game.

          Now, moving onto the unreliability of rolls, that can be due to a few things: bad luck, or lots of rolls (the latter meaning that you have more chances for extreme outcomes). Rolling less frequently is feasible using the steps above. Bad luck is harder to deal with, but you should, in theory, also get a break every now and again too. But sometimes the dice just seem to be against you.

          There is one more way to handle this: an Advantage/Disadvantage system, so that rolling itself becomes more reliable when things are in your favour. That also makes the things we've talked about, such as when an action is stress-free or should be easy, have a bit more mechanical weight.

          So instead of giving people modifiers, you can give them Advantage or Disadvantage to replace all of them, and those qualities will make the dice results more reliable when needed.

          With Advantage you can either: roll each dice pool twice, and take the higher result; or roll the dice pool once but take the higher of your rolled successes or the successes you'd get by 'taking half'. That means dice pools with Advantage will either trend towards doing half their value, or will always score at least half their dice in successes, depending on which version you use. Pick which version works best for you.

          Disadvantage would work in the opposite way: roll twice and take the lower result; or roll once, but cap your successes at half your dice pool. Again, pick the version that works best for you, but it should probably be balanced with the Advantage option you choose.

          If you have two sources of Advantage, you can take Major Advantage: roll the dice pool once and keep any successes rolled, then re-roll all failed dice and keep any successes rolled there too.

          Likewise, Major Disadvantage would be the opposite: re-roll any successes, keeping only the final number of successes showing.

          Advantage and Disadvantage can stack, so one of each leads to no modifier, while two Advantage and one Disadvantage results in just Advantage, and one Advantage and three Disadvantage would result in Major Disadvantage.

          Then you can rule that spending WP on a roll gives you Advantage. So any time someone doesn't want to flub their roll, they can pay the price to get a more reliable outcome, while not entirely eliminating the need to roll.

          Of course, your suggested auto success rules also work, but the reason they start to feel a bit fiddly is because we're stretching the rules to do things they're not really designed for.
          Last edited by adambeyoncelowe; 08-30-2022, 05:36 AM.


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          • #20
            One of the reasons I think VtR would work better is precisely the question of reliability.

            WoD works with amount of successes most of the time, so it is really hard to work around power reliability. Powers are made to track successes and change the outcome based on that. Hence Cain Loup-Noir feels the burden of any significant change affecting the outcome of powers and maybe requiring their complete overhaul, which would be extremely problematic. This specially makes any rule for automatic success a problem to define how effective the result is.

            Requiem mostly uses Simple Success unless tracking the amount of success is really important, and the powers are already revised to account for this, as is the rest of the system. That's key to ease the burden on any attempt to remove rolls in this game. Even if using the WoD rules, implementing the VtR powers could help a lot here, either as is or as a basis for the overhaul.


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            • #21
              Originally posted by monteparnas View Post
              One of the reasons I think VtR would work better is precisely the question of reliability.

              WoD works with amount of successes most of the time, so it is really hard to work around power reliability. Powers are made to track successes and change the outcome based on that. Hence Cain Loup-Noir feels the burden of any significant change affecting the outcome of powers and maybe requiring their complete overhaul, which would be extremely problematic. This specially makes any rule for automatic success a problem to define how effective the result is.

              Requiem mostly uses Simple Success unless tracking the amount of success is really important, and the powers are already revised to account for this, as is the rest of the system. That's key to ease the burden on any attempt to remove rolls in this game. Even if using the WoD rules, implementing the VtR powers could help a lot here, either as is or as a basis for the overhaul.
              You know, I think you're right. VTR2e has better powers than VTM anyway.


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              • #22
                With my friends we're already engaged since a year in ou wta campaign and more than 6 month in our vtm campaign, so completely change to game system to another would be disruptive for some. Adapt rules to make them work with our setting (wich represent hard work i agree but that's fun for me, as i said i like to make games my own) is what we do.

                A MtA player told me that most of their powers are based on a fix trait roll (arete if my memory is correct), he also said that sorcerer work the same with willpower, and of course Vampire's Thaumaturgie work with it as well. He told me that if it was to get rid of powers roll when players have the same pool as difficulty we could just do like Mage and Sorcerer and roll willpower for all Disciplines and Gifts. According to him in this way the take half system would always work because the pool would never go above 10 and if pc want to get more they would roll and/or spend willpower to have the needed success

                Anyway i've had a lot of good advice until now on this thread i think i know better how to handle things

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by Cain Loup-Noir View Post
                  With my friends we're already engaged since a year in ou wta campaign and more than 6 month in our vtm campaign, so completely change to game system to another would be disruptive for some. Adapt rules to make them work with our setting (wich represent hard work i agree but that's fun for me, as i said i like to make games my own) is what we do.

                  A MtA player told me that most of their powers are based on a fix trait roll (arete if my memory is correct), he also said that sorcerer work the same with willpower, and of course Vampire's Thaumaturgie work with it as well. He told me that if it was to get rid of powers roll when players have the same pool as difficulty we could just do like Mage and Sorcerer and roll willpower for all Disciplines and Gifts. According to him in this way the take half system would always work because the pool would never go above 10 and if pc want to get more they would roll and/or spend willpower to have the needed success

                  Anyway i've had a lot of good advice until now on this thread i think i know better how to handle things
                  The only thing with Willpower is that a) people only need to specialise in one area to be good at everything and b) Willpower is easy (and cheap) to max out, so you could end up with everyone scoring five successes for every power used.

                  VTR2e Disciplines wouldn't require huge changes, and your VTM players would get more powerful Disciplines as a result anyway.

                  The main difference is that all of them only require a single success, so anything from 2-4 successes doesn't matter and it won't screw things up if characters have moderate to large dice pools. That means a character with 2-8 dice in their pool will just succeed and doesn't need a special outcome.

                  You'd need 9+ dice (if rounding up) to score a critical success, so most powers would just activate with the basic effect. And the effects don't really scale in the same way. It's not like VTM where five successes might let you target loads of people or make a power work for a year or something overpowered like that. You generally just get a small extra bonus instead.

                  VTR does use different traits and uses three traits for Discipline dice pools, rather than two, so I would stick with VTM dice pools but VTR 'outcomes' and power levels, if that makes sense?

                  Anyway, it's all up to you. You need to do what works for your table and causes the least amount of upheaval.
                  Last edited by adambeyoncelowe; 08-31-2022, 07:59 AM.


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                  • #24
                    As an example, here's how Dominate 1 (Mesmerize) works in VTR2e:

                    Dominate 1 (Mesmerize)
                    Cost: None
                    Dice pool: Int + Expression + Dominate v Resolve + Blood Potency (I'd make this Int + Intimidation v temporary Willpower in VTM, to use the VTM dice pool and traits)
                    Botch: The person sees through your attempt. Emboldened by this, they can choose to turn a single failure into a success at a time of their choosing.
                    Failure: Nothing happens.
                    1-4 successes: The target is mesmerised, so they will follow your commands until they are injured or do something that causes them to make a Conscience roll. Once the mesmerism wears off, they gain a +3 dice bonus to resist future attempts to use the same power on them in the same scene, but they can't quite remember what they did or why.
                    5+ successes: As above, but you can also issue a 3-4 word command immediately or make them remember a single statement as if it was true ("I was never here," "You did this," etc).

                    So, in that situation, most of the time, players will just succeed with the 'take half' rule. But even the critical success effect isn't that big of a deal, so it doesn't matter if they have dice pools in the double digits.


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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by adambeyoncelowe View Post
                      As an example, here's how Dominate 1 (Mesmerize) works in VTR2e:

                      Dominate 1 (Mesmerize)
                      Cost: None
                      Dice pool: Int + Expression + Dominate v Resolve + Blood Potency (I'd make this Int + Intimidation v temporary Willpower in VTM, to use the VTM dice pool and traits)
                      Botch: The person sees through your attempt. Emboldened by this, they can choose to turn a single failure into a success at a time of their choosing.
                      Failure: Nothing happens.
                      1-4 successes: The target is mesmerised, so they will follow your commands until they are injured or do something that causes them to make a Conscience roll. Once the mesmerism wears off, they gain a +3 dice bonus to resist future attempts to use the same power on them in the same scene, but they can't quite remember what they did or why.
                      5+ successes: As above, but you can also issue a 3-4 word command immediately or make them remember a single statement as if it was true ("I was never here," "You did this," etc).

                      So, in that situation, most of the time, players will just succeed with the 'take half' rule. But even the critical success effect isn't that big of a deal, so it doesn't matter if they have dice pools in the double digits.
                      Well i can modify the powers rolls to work the same instead of taking those of VtR.
                      Exemple: Domination 3, instead of getting more powerfull effect according to the number of success i can state that if the roll success the power allows to erase memory, and if the roll get 5 or more success the power allow to rewrite memory
                      This way the power keep it's interest and force player to roll when he need the more powerfull aspect

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by Cain Loup-Noir View Post

                        Well i can modify the powers rolls to work the same instead of taking those of VtR.
                        Exemple: Domination 3, instead of getting more powerfull effect according to the number of success i can state that if the roll success the power allows to erase memory, and if the roll get 5 or more success the power allow to rewrite memory
                        This way the power keep it's interest and force player to roll when he need the more powerfull aspect
                        That works too! It isn't a huge leap, either.

                        Oooh, sudden lightning strike: you could always cap auto successes in Disciplines at the player's Discipline rating. So they'll never default to 5+ successes till they max out their Discipline.


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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by adambeyoncelowe View Post

                          That works too! It isn't a huge leap, either.

                          Oooh, sudden lightning strike: you could always cap auto successes in Disciplines at the player's Discipline rating. So they'll never default to 5+ successes till they max out their Discipline.
                          That's a very interesting one for Vampires, that cap what they can do and force them to improve their Discipline in general to have better control on theirs associate powers, as it work with basic auto succes rules they could use it only if their basic pool is equal or higher than difficulty. Brilliant!!!

                          For werewolf gift unfortunatly there's nothing similar to disciplines, only stand alone powers so it wouldn't work without creating a new trait. But as stand alone power it's quite easy to use the simple success and great success system of VtR
                          For exemple the homid gift Persuasion: a simple success reduce by 3 the social roll, and a great success make them all success without social roll at all. The base difficulty is 7, with luck and a 10 dice pool you can easily fall to difficulty below 5 on hard situation or below 3 on casual so reduce it to those 2 is quite realistic
                          In addtion the power can be activated on simple success without roll if your pool is high enough to be auto success, but if you want the great success you must roll
                          Last edited by Cain Loup-Noir; 09-03-2022, 06:03 PM.

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by Cain Loup-Noir View Post

                            That's a very interesting one for Vampires, that cap what they can do and force them to improve their Discipline in general to have better control on theirs associate powers, as it work with basic auto succes rules they could use it only if their basic pool is equal or higher than difficulty. Brilliant!!!

                            For werewolf gift unfortunatly there's nothing similar to disciplines, only stand alone powers so it wouldn't work without creating a new trait. But as stand alone power it's quite easy to use the simple success and great success system of VtR
                            For exemple the homid gift Persuasion: a simple success reduce by 3 the social roll, and a great success make them all success without social roll at all. The base difficulty is 7, with luck and a 10 dice pool you can easily fall to difficulty below 5 on hard situation or below 3 on casual so reduce it to those 2 is quite realistic
                            In addtion the power can be activated on simple success without roll if your pool is high enough to be auto success, but if you want the great success you must roll
                            I suppose you could use Rank or something? But yeah, I think the approach you suggest could work.


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                            • #29
                              Rank would be interesting, but if i use it i need some precision about renown.
                              From what i read you gain renown by acting wise, honorable and brave. When you have 10 point you must undergo Rite of Accomplishmentto convert them as 1 permanent dot.
                              When you have enough dot depending on your auspice you can gain rank by undergo a challenge. But higher rank mean bigger responsabilities in the Caern and Garou Society.

                              Now what if a garou des not want to get higher rank? Because if he's not the type to lead, prefer let smarter than him lead or something that make him decide to stay rank 2 or 3? According to the rules he would not gain access to higher gift. One of my pc is playing a Arhoun that prefer being the weapon instead of the holder as he say, his character does not want to become a leader, or get very high responsabilities.

                              I don't know if some people here met this situation, i play it like if he refuse that honor he could be misperceived by his sept but it's only temporary, nothing force a garou to get higher rank in the rules or lore, except he i missed an information

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                              • #30
                                You can keep accumulating Renown even if you don't get the Rank, but Rank IS the main trait of supernatural potency for Shapechanger characters. You get access to higher Gifts and stuff precisely because of your Renown as it gives you respect among spirits and arguably also a greater metaphysical weight within the Umbra.

                                Now, Rank does mean responsibilities, but it doesn't mean leadership. A high-rank Garou isn't forced into taking in any particular role in the Sept or even in their pack if they don't want to. It is rare, but not unheard of. Yet there are, indeed, expectations. If you don't want to delve too much into this kind of intrigue, a character that wants no greater responsibility may raise in rank just to become the most respected warrior around, but get no other role, and if the sept is stable without them this will have no further complications.

                                If you do want to include this aspect of Garou society, though, then such a character would have a hard time regardless. Garou society judges its members all the time and has high expectations on all of them. It is a society at war, and laziness isn't tolerated. Higher ups will frown upon your lack of effort, inferiors and equals are encouraged to prove themselves at your expense. You may have to take the lead in hard times when no one else is up to the task as much as you are, you're required to remember all the time that you're not just doing your best for yourself, but for the survival of your people. A character that's caught making an actual effort to not be seen so they can avoid responsibility will face harsh punishment, up to and including being made Ronin if this goes far enough. And while getting them may be unlikely, accruing power above your rank is a strong telltale sign that you're more resourceful than you want others to believe.

                                And yes, there are many characters in WtA that don't want so much responsibility, but the conflict between what you want and what Garou society forces you to get is a part of the game.


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