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  • adambeyoncelowe
    started a topic [V5] Reworking Messy Crits

    [V5] Reworking Messy Crits

    So, I sort of like the idea of Messy Crits in theory, but I never like them in practice. It just seems like adversarial game design to punish players for good rolls but I do like the idea of tempting the Beast to get a better outcome in desperate situations. I also remember reading in the V5 Companion that feedback from players suggests people weren't using Blood Surge much. So I've sort of folded the two together to come up with a possible house rule I want to moot. This is in addition to the standard benefit of Blood Surges.

    Firstly, you ignore the standard V5 Messy Critical rules. Doing well on a roll is a good thing, even if you have Hunger Dice. That means you really only need to worry about 1s on Hunger Dice.

    Secondly, the 'Messy Critical effect' becomes an outcome of an alternative (more risky) use of Blood Surge, linking the risk to a tangible reward. In addition to the usual Blood Surge rules, add the following option:

    Unleashing the Beast
    You may call on the Beast to empower you beyond even the strength of your blood, turning your Hunger into a deadly weapon against those who would get in your way. Your action is shaped by your Beast in some way -- a vicious all-out attack, snarling intimidation with bared fangs, sniffing and hunting like an animal -- and mortal onlookers, regardless of their scepticism and disposition, will immediately sense your inhuman nature.

    System: Make a rouse check. Then add your full Blood Surge plus Hunger Dice as a bonus to the total dice pool. If you roll more successes than your Composure, your Beast is also unleashed, revelling in its triumph and power, and you gain a relevant Compulsion. Bestial Failures apply as usual.

    Whatever else happens, you have revealed your true nature to those present. Any attempt to peacefully socialise with mortal witnesses suffers a penalty equal to your Hunger, while you add your Hunger Dice as a bonus to intimidation attempts instead.

    Example: Jim has Blood Surge 2 and is at Hunger 3. He really wants to kill this pesky Inquisitor who's invaded his haven, but two extra dice won't cut it for weakly Jim, who normally only has a Strength + Brawl of five dice. So, he Unleashes the Beast. First he makes a rouse check, which he fails, increasing his Hunger to four. Then he adds his Blood Surge (2) and his Hunger (4) to his regular dice pool (5) for a whopping total of 11 dice! He rolls 6 successes, easily surpassing his Composure (3), and so gains a Compulsion. But he gets to tear that hunter limb from limb, and the Beast is going to enjoy it...
    Last edited by adambeyoncelowe; 03-21-2022, 04:06 PM.

  • adambeyoncelowe
    replied
    Originally posted by Vilenecromancer View Post

    Your rule feels great just reading it again. It's a temptation, but at a risk of revealing the beast. It's what v5 messy seems like it wants to do, but isn't as random.

    I think some table play is in order to see how it'll play though.
    Thank you. I will certainly be giving it a spin, and will report back. We don't have a game lined up for a while as I've had some family stuff crop up that was more important, but we are hoping to get together in a month or so.

    If anyone does get to use this rule, let me know how it plays out. I may convince my husband to do a one-on-one session with me to test it out.
    Last edited by adambeyoncelowe; 03-28-2022, 03:02 AM.

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  • Vilenecromancer
    replied
    Originally posted by adambeyoncelowe View Post

    Back to the suggested house rules at hand, then: is there any way I can make the balance of risk and reward feel tempting? I definitely want it to be a gamble, but one that will be hard to resist in dire circumstances. I think temptation and addiction are key themes I'd like to engender, but I want players to choose those things here, rather than always have it a result of the dice. (With BFs and Frenzy checks still a thing, I think you'd then have more tools in your toolbox.)
    Your rule feels great just reading it again. It's a temptation, but at a risk of revealing the beast. It's what v5 messy seems like it wants to do, but isn't as random.

    I think some table play is in order to see how it'll play though.

    Leave a comment:


  • adambeyoncelowe
    replied
    Originally posted by SetiteFriend View Post

    Vilenecromancer That is for a combat test, the original test was to just kill the bouncer, but the messy critical made it obviously monstrous.

    You killed the bouncer, but you clearly snapped his spine or tore out his throat



    I'm sorry, I hadn't thoroughly read your previous post so I missed it.

    The thing it, moderate or routine or whatever, the book never says it is a default roll. It explicitly says "Decide on a Difficulty according to the table below." Is the test closer to seducing someone in the mood or walking a tight-rope?



    I have no problem with that, and find your idea interesting (even if it needs work).

    My problem is odd issues I never hear about outside these forums, or that have come-up in any of the V5 games I've played, being used to disparage V5, as if they were somehow the norm.

    This thread should probably go back to the main point though.
    All fair enough. And I think a part of the problem is that, historically, this forum has been the place where a lot of edition warring has occurred since the V5 playtests first landed, so there can be defensiveness for fans of V5 and for fans of V20, as the expectation is that any supportive or critical comments are a dig (or someone looking for a fight).

    I agree that sometimes things can be exaggerated for the purposes of hating on V5, and this tends to cause an equal and opposite reaction. In my case some of the things that were problems on first read-through aren't problems now, and I've generally warmed quite a bit to V5.

    I think, also, that some people feel that they can't discuss these matters constructively without being accused of being an irrational grognard. Some people will be whining purely for the hate, but I think some people are whining for legitimate reasons and just don't do it in the most diplomatic of ways (or the tone isn't as clear as it could be). So it gets tricky.

    I tried to set up this thread in a way that would avoid the immediate defensiveness on either side, but I'll admit I sometimes have to type up a response and then let it sit awhile before I press post to make sure I'm getting it right (and still sometimes get it wrong and have to go back and edit it).

    Anyway, I returned to the issue after watching this V5 review (admittedly of the alpha, where BFs and MCs were a bit different): https://youtu.be/iTULJDFoZ_Q

    They did miss that you could spend WP to ignore Compulsions and they talk about how YMMV based on the ST and the group, but it was broadly unpopular with all of them. (Note that they did go on to do a short V5 Chronicle, with some house rules, and I haven't watched them all to say how they handled MCs in the end.)

    I have seen others make that comment in more than just a white room scenario, too. Admittedly, though, there can be confirmation bias going on (we notice the things that align with our own beliefs more than the things that don't), and I'll accept I am subject to that as much as anyone else. So I may be just seeing these comments more than the ones that outweigh them.

    Either way, though, I am generally a homebrewer at heart, so when I suggest tweaking a rule, I'm not saying everyone should play things that way -- I am just trying something new out to give some tools to people who want them (and I think that's fair even if that's only a minority of people).

    For the record, I don't think Messy Crits are a problem for most players; I couldn't possibly have the numbers to assess that objectively. In our games, one person liked MCs (but really digs this style of play; he always engages in friendly PvP, RPs all his characters' flaws and loves to run and play in Alien games where we all die); one person absolutely hated them (but he also hated Warhammer 3e, which had some similar narrative elements; he also RPs flaws but is less interested in randomising that element; he doesn't like Alien for more than a one-shot because he finds it disempowering); and the other two (including me) liked them in theory but were lukewarm on how it played out (possibly because the response of the person who hated it impacted on the entire group's enjoyment).

    Back to the suggested house rules at hand, then: is there any way I can make the balance of risk and reward feel tempting? I definitely want it to be a gamble, but one that will be hard to resist in dire circumstances. I think temptation and addiction are key themes I'd like to engender, but I want players to choose those things here, rather than always have it a result of the dice. (With BFs and Frenzy checks still a thing, I think you'd then have more tools in your toolbox.)

    ETA: For Difficulty, I think we will just have to agree to disagree. I can't point to a clear ruling either way in V5, but the default for Blush of Life, Diablerie, and most Disciplines that require dice pools is Difficulty 3, with further complications pushing it up. Using search on my PDF, there are 33 references to Difficulty 3 in the CRB, and only 9 each to Difficulty 2 or 4.
    Last edited by adambeyoncelowe; 03-27-2022, 07:09 AM.

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  • SetiteFriend
    replied
    Nothing like possible execution for just trying to take care of a bouncer only to snap his spin in an obviously bestial manner, on the same page.
    Vilenecromancer That is for a combat test, the original test was to just kill the bouncer, but the messy critical made it obviously monstrous.

    You killed the bouncer, but you clearly snapped his spine or tore out his throat

    Originally posted by adambeyoncelowe View Post
    I gave you a page reference for this already, but I am assuming good faith in this discussion, so I'll go into more detail for you.
    I'm sorry, I hadn't thoroughly read your previous post so I missed it.

    The thing it, moderate or routine or whatever, the book never says it is a default roll. It explicitly says "Decide on a Difficulty according to the table below." Is the test closer to seducing someone in the mood or walking a tight-rope?

    Obviously, YMMV, but you can at least understand from a theoretical viewpoint why some people find it a bit unnatural/awkward/counterintuitive/intrusive/unfair? You don't have to agree with that position to see that.
    I have no problem with that, and find your idea interesting (even if it needs work).

    My problem is odd issues I never hear about outside these forums, or that have come-up in any of the V5 games I've played, being used to disparage V5, as if they were somehow the norm.

    This thread should probably go back to the main point though.

    Leave a comment:


  • CTPhipps
    replied
    I think everyone is getting a beat heated here and cariacturing the other posters' arguments. Please watch it.

    Leave a comment:


  • adambeyoncelowe
    replied
    Originally posted by SetiteFriend View Post

    You found the right book and tore the rest of the bookcase down in your exultation

    You opened the door by pulling it off its hinges


    The vision is cut short by a glimpse of herself indulging her most bestial urges, and she receives one Stain.

    These are all examples given for non-combat Messy Criticals, which are all reasonable. And more importantly: "the Storyteller and the player work together to decide on the level of success and the level of mess". I've often given the ideas for my STs, and proceeded to roleplay them myself, which was really fun.
    It's not necessarily the severity of the MC that's the problem. It's the fact that you roll well and get some sort of consequence for that, rather than being rewarded as in other systems where a critical success is always a good thing.

    Obviously, YMMV, but you can at least understand from a theoretical viewpoint why some people find it a bit unnatural/awkward/counterintuitive/intrusive/unfair? You don't have to agree with that position to see that.

    This goes into the other problem of too high difficulties (Which for some reason people think baseline is 3), plus you are supposed be penalized for not following it compulsion.

    And a lot of them aren't even too disruptive, depending on the scene, like taking a break from looking for someone in a nightclub to feed, turning a up until that point peaceful conflict violent to drive an unwanted party away et cetera, you can do a lot of things with them.
    I gave you a page reference for this already, but I am assuming good faith in this discussion, so I'll go into more detail for you.

    According to the CRB, p 119, Difficulty 3 is moderate. Let's Google this word to get the definition:

    moderate
    adjective
    /ˈmɒd(ə)rət/
    average in amount, intensity, quality, or degree.
    "we walked at a moderate pace"

    So yes, moderate means 'average', and the average Difficulty is therefore 3. Which means you need about 6 dice to succeed most of the time, given a 50% chance of success on any given die.

    Difficulty 2 is straightforward, which means:

    straightforward
    adjective
    /streɪtˈfɔːwəd/
    uncomplicated and easy to do or understand.
    "in a straightforward case no fees will be charged"

    So Difficulty 2 is therefore uncomplicated and 'easy'.

    Difficulty 1 is routine, which means:

    routine
    /ruːˈtiːn/
    noun
    a sequence of actions regularly followed.
    "I settled down into a routine of work and sleep"
    adjective
    performed as part of a regular procedure rather than for a special reason.
    "the Ministry insisted that this was just a routine annual drill"

    (I love the accidental Setite reference in that last one BTW.)

    Which means it's something everyday and practised. I.e., something you can do without much fuss. I'd consider that 'very easy' for the sake of argument (and since there's no lesser Difficulty).

    So I think we need to be clear that Difficulty 3 is, RAW, the average Difficulty for V5.

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  • Vilenecromancer
    replied
    Originally posted by SetiteFriend View Post

    You found the right book and tore the rest of the bookcase down in your exultation

    You opened the door by pulling it off its hinges


    The vision is cut short by a glimpse of herself indulging her most bestial urges, and she receives one Stain.

    These are all examples given for non-combat Messy Criticals, which are all reasonable. And more importantly: "the Storyteller and the player work together to decide on the level of success and the level of mess". I've often given the ideas for my STs, and proceeded to roleplay them myself, which was really fun.

    And common sense should always apply when being an ST.
    Yes cause causing a masquerade breech is a great consequence for getting a critical. Nothing like possible execution for just trying to take care of a bouncer only to snap his spin in an obviously bestial manner, on the same page.

    Still not over that simply failing the CRITICAL SUCCESS roll was ever an idea. Messy or otherwise.

    Originally posted by SetiteFriend View Post
    This goes into the other problem of too high difficulties (Which for some reason people think baseline is 3), plus you are supposed be penalized for not following it compulsion.

    And a lot of them aren't even too disruptive, depending on the scene, like taking a break from looking for someone in a nightclub to feed, turning a up until that point peaceful conflict violent to drive an unwanted party away et cetera, you can do a lot of things with them.
    The reason people think 3 is the baseline is simply the word moderate being used. Moderate literally means average in amount. So this would lead most to think, well if this is the average difficulty then it must be the baseline in most cases.

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  • SetiteFriend
    replied
    Originally posted by Vilenecromancer View Post

    Book straight up gives insane consequences by RAW. Such as, doing such a monstrous action that give you a stain or cause a masquerade breech. With these examples, there's a good chance most STs are just...well, doing exactly that. Also, if the ST can't come up with a narrative consequence a messy, you just fail. So if even half of the new STs do it by the book, can you see why consequences would be so high?
    You found the right book and tore the rest of the bookcase down in your exultation

    You opened the door by pulling it off its hinges


    The vision is cut short by a glimpse of herself indulging her most bestial urges, and she receives one Stain.

    These are all examples given for non-combat Messy Criticals, which are all reasonable. And more importantly: "the Storyteller and the player work together to decide on the level of success and the level of mess". I've often given the ideas for my STs, and proceeded to roleplay them myself, which was really fun.

    And common sense should always apply when being an ST.

    Edit: Also compulsions, as of the companion, are possible consequences for a messy, and was always a possibility with bestials. Not compulsions aren't too bad, until you realize doing anything that goes against your compulsion for the scene gives you a 2 or more dice penalty. This can add to the spiral of failure.
    This goes into the other problem of too high difficulties (Which for some reason people think baseline is 3), plus you are supposed be penalized for not following it compulsion.

    And a lot of them aren't even too disruptive, depending on the scene, like taking a break from looking for someone in a nightclub to feed, turning a up until that point peaceful conflict violent to drive an unwanted party away et cetera, you can do a lot of things with them.

    Leave a comment:


  • Vilenecromancer
    replied
    Originally posted by SetiteFriend View Post
    The solution is also not go with absolutely horrible outcomes for BF/MC. What are you all even doing for consequences? You get a messy critical in a charisma roll to get into the club and so you behead the bouncer in public?
    Book straight up gives insane consequences by RAW. Such as, doing such a monstrous action that give you a stain or cause a masquerade breech. With these examples, there's a good chance most STs are just...well, doing exactly that. Also, if the ST can't come up with a narrative consequence a messy, you just fail. So if even half of the new STs do it by the book, can you see why consequences would be so high?

    Edit: Also compulsions, as of the companion, are possible consequences for a messy, and was always a possibility with bestials. Not compulsions aren't too bad, until you realize doing anything that goes against your compulsion for the scene gives you a 2 or more dice penalty. This can add to the spiral of failure.
    Last edited by Vilenecromancer; 03-25-2022, 01:48 AM.

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  • SetiteFriend
    replied
    The solution is also not go with absolutely horrible outcomes for BF/MC. What are you all even doing for consequences? You get a messy critical in a charisma roll to get into the club and so you behead the bouncer in public?

    Leave a comment:


  • BadFurryFanFic
    replied
    Originally posted by Newb95 View Post
    Bestial failures happened with frustrating frequency in my games, even at hunger 1, the concept is interesting in theory but really starts to get old a the table.

    Yeah, we lost like 3 PCs during playtesting due to BF/MC dice bullshit and the cascade effect that occurs......apparently the solution is to essentially play diceless but thats the opposite of what we want out of a game.

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  • Newb95
    replied
    Originally posted by adambeyoncelowe View Post
    *shouts at self* See what you have started now, Adam!

    I jest, but I hope we don't start another edition war. It's quiet enough as it is around here without us driving more people off.

    As I see it, there can sometimes be two competing arguments that get used: 'you just need to play it this really specific way for it to work and then it's perfect' and 'it's a total dumpster fire that never works, ever'.

    As always, the reality is that things are somewhere in the middle, with that middle being experienced slightly differently based on your perspective. V5 does work better if played a certain way, but not everyone engages with a thing the exact same way, and good mechanics will allow for some leeway.

    Bestial Failures are pretty rare in my games. But, having read this thread, I realise I have a different understanding of Bestial Failures to others.

    I have only been counting a Bestial Failure as a roll with no successes and one or more 1s (skulls) on the Hunger Dice. I'm pretty sure that's how they do it on LA by Night, too. But it seems you're all right in saying that rolling not enough successes and any 1s on Hunger Dice is a Bestial Failure. It's there in black and white on p.206.

    Come to think of it, I think I maybe did read that, decided it was too strict, and then house ruled it. Then assumed the HR was RAW. Notice a trend here with how my brain works? My bad! #neurodiverse

    If, as p.119 says, a Difficulty 3 is 'Moderate', that does mean dice pools of less than 6 are tricky. And they would lead to many more Messy Crits than we've currently been having. I'm not sure Take Half is a complete solution to that.

    Automatic success for me is always reserved for low stakes stuff, or where you have time and preparation on your side. Like: 'You have as much time as you want to pick this lock, and your dice pool is double the Difficulty, so I won't make you roll.' But not: 'Don't roll to kill your enemy. Just take half.'

    If you're routinely not rolling for dangerous, pressurised or suspenseful stuff, then I think the system is failing you -- dice rolls are supposed to support the sense of tension, not avoid it altogether.

    But from what people are saying, I don't think that's what's happening either. So I think the variance is probably due to chronicle emphases (e.g., lots of RP in Elysium is going to require less rolling than doing a sting or a heist; some games are more chatty and others are more do-y). When talking about VTM, it's common for people to be talking about quite different game experiences because it always has been a kitchen sink setting.

    My guess is that the Companion said to make Difficulties secret for one main reason: as ST, you can decide after the player rolls whether they succeed or not. That allows for: 'Oh you only rolled two successes? Well... Lucky you, that's exactly what you needed!' Or, more likely: 'You only rolled two? Well, it's Difficulty 3, so how about a success at a cost?' (In either case, you could have actually intended for it to be Difficulty 4 before seeing the result, but adjusted down without fuss.)

    The easiest fix is to make Difficulty 2 standard, or to just give more dots at chargen. That would require more balancing, though. Maybe just slap on an extra 15xp for everyone, and let them at it.

    But back to the topic at hand: the confusion with the special die results here also leads me onto another issue I have seen with Messy Crits (and Bestial Failures).

    In five seasons of LA by Night, even with Jason Carl there, there was often someone who needed the Messy Crit/Bestial Failure rules explaining to them, or help calculating the effects of their dice pool.

    Part of the issue comes from people calling any 10s on Hunger Dice/the ankh with teeth 'a Messy Critical' and any 1s on Hunger Dice/the skulls 'a Bestial Failure'. There doesn't seem to be a separate name for those individual die faces themselves, so people default to the name of the effect they create, which leads to confusion.

    So people are like, 'Oh, I rolled a Bestial Failure.' But they only mean they rolled a 1 on the Hunger Dice. They may have otherwise succeeded.

    Only counting 10s twice if they come in pairs is less simple than just doubling them, and leads to some people getting really confused when they roll three 10s (even though the rules give an example of this). This is partly due to system mastery and not reading the book, I guess, but is perhaps compounded by poor organisation. I think it's a technical editing issue, too.

    For example, p.205 says: 'In addition, rolling a 0 (10) or 1 on a Hunger die carries additional consequences: messy criticals and bestial failures.' That implies those consequences apply to all rolls with those dice faces, but that's not actually the case. When you turn the page, they add more nuance to that. A technical editor could have made that simpler by changing 'carries additional consequences' to 'may carry additional consequences'.

    Maybe in future editions they could just clarify all this by using a technical editor to give more consistent wording. So 10s are called Boons on any dice; the skulls are called Banes; and the toothy ankhs are maybe called Red Boons to set them apart.

    Then you can clearly talk about the right thing for instant comprehension: 'I have a Bane, two Boons and a Red Boon, plus one normal success.' 'Great, that's six successes.' Easy.

    tl;dr: Part of the issue experienced with these effects arises from different gaming styles requiring a different frequency for dice rolling. You may need to scale Difficulty (or add more dots at chargen) to adapt for that. Clearer terminology would also help avoid confusion at the table.

    Regarding LA by night, I think Jason Carl said that he homebrewed stuff for the sake of drama, I didn't watch it but from what I read online, a lot of stuff doesn't match the rules.

    Leave a comment:


  • adambeyoncelowe
    replied
    *shouts at self* See what you have started now, Adam!

    I jest, but I hope we don't start another edition war. It's quiet enough as it is around here without us driving more people off.

    As I see it, there can sometimes be two competing arguments that get used: 'you just need to play it this really specific way for it to work and then it's perfect' and 'it's a total dumpster fire that never works, ever'.

    As always, the reality is that things are somewhere in the middle, with that middle being experienced slightly differently based on your perspective. V5 does work better if played a certain way, but not everyone engages with a thing the exact same way, and good mechanics will allow for some leeway.

    Bestial Failures are pretty rare in my games. But, having read this thread, I realise I have a different understanding of Bestial Failures to others.

    I have only been counting a Bestial Failure as a roll with no successes and one or more 1s (skulls) on the Hunger Dice. I'm pretty sure that's how they do it on LA by Night, too. But it seems you're all right in saying that rolling not enough successes and any 1s on Hunger Dice is a Bestial Failure. It's there in black and white on p.206.

    Come to think of it, I think I maybe did read that, decided it was too strict, and then house ruled it. Then assumed the HR was RAW. Notice a trend here with how my brain works? My bad! #neurodiverse

    If, as p.119 says, a Difficulty 3 is 'Moderate', that does mean dice pools of less than 6 are tricky. And they would lead to many more Bestial Failures than we've currently been having. I'm not sure Take Half is a complete solution to that.

    Automatic success for me is always reserved for low stakes stuff, or where you have time and preparation on your side. Like: 'You have as much time as you want to pick this lock, and your dice pool is double the Difficulty, so I won't make you roll.' But not: 'Don't roll to kill your enemy. Just take half.'

    If you're routinely not rolling for dangerous, pressurised or suspenseful stuff, then I think the system is failing you -- dice rolls are supposed to support the sense of tension, not avoid it altogether.

    But from what people are saying, I don't think that's what's happening either. So I think the variance is probably due to chronicle emphases (e.g., lots of RP in Elysium is going to require less rolling than doing a sting or a heist; some games are more chatty and others are more do-y). When talking about VTM, it's common for people to be talking about quite different game experiences because it always has been a kitchen sink setting.

    My guess is that the Companion said to make Difficulties secret for one main reason: as ST, you can decide after the player rolls whether they succeed or not. That allows for: 'Oh you only rolled two successes? Well... Lucky you, that's exactly what you needed!' Or, more likely: 'You only rolled two? Well, it's Difficulty 3, so how about a success at a cost?' (In either case, you could have actually intended for it to be Difficulty 4 before seeing the result, but adjusted down without fuss.)

    The easiest fix is to make Difficulty 2 standard, or to just give more dots at chargen. That would require more balancing, though. Maybe just slap on an extra 15xp for everyone, and let them at it.

    But back to the topic at hand: the confusion with the special die results here also leads me onto another issue I have seen with Messy Crits (and Bestial Failures).

    In five seasons of LA by Night, even with Jason Carl there, there was often someone who needed the Messy Crit/Bestial Failure rules explaining to them, or help calculating the effects of their dice pool.

    Part of the issue comes from people calling any 10s on Hunger Dice/the ankh with teeth 'a Messy Critical' and any 1s on Hunger Dice/the skulls 'a Bestial Failure'. There doesn't seem to be a separate name for those individual die faces themselves, so people default to the name of the effect they create, which leads to confusion.

    So people are like, 'Oh, I rolled a Bestial Failure.' But they only mean they rolled a 1 on the Hunger Dice. They may have otherwise succeeded.

    Only counting 10s twice if they come in pairs is less simple than just doubling them, and leads to some people getting really confused when they roll three 10s (even though the rules give an example of this). This is partly due to system mastery and not reading the book, I guess, but is perhaps compounded by poor organisation. I think it's a technical editing issue, too.

    For example, p.205 says: 'In addition, rolling a 0 (10) or 1 on a Hunger die carries additional consequences: messy criticals and bestial failures.' That implies those consequences apply to all rolls with those dice faces, but that's not actually the case. When you turn the page, they add more nuance to that. A technical editor could have made that simpler by changing 'carries additional consequences' to 'may carry additional consequences'.

    Maybe in future editions they could just clarify all this by using a technical editor to give more consistent wording. So 10s are called Boons on any dice; the skulls are called Banes; and the toothy ankhs are maybe called Red Boons to set them apart.

    Then you can clearly talk about the right thing for instant comprehension: 'I have a Bane, two Boons and a Red Boon, plus one normal success.' 'Great, that's six successes.' Easy.

    tl;dr: Part of the issue experienced with these effects arises from different gaming styles requiring a different frequency for dice rolling. You may need to scale Difficulty (or add more dots at chargen) to adapt for that. Clearer terminology would also help avoid confusion at the table.
    Last edited by adambeyoncelowe; 03-26-2022, 04:29 AM. Reason: Wrote Messy Crits when I meant Bestial Failures

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  • Vilenecromancer
    replied
    Originally posted by SetiteFriend View Post
    Where in the book does it say 3 is the standard difficulty, as far as I know it never says any? Not using modifiers or automatic wins is a fault of the STs, not of the system itself.

    I never felt the need to optimize in V5, a pool of 3-4 often gets by most things, and if needed I can surge or willpower. Or Win at a Cost, another fun mechanic to use.

    On Messy Crits, they should never be too harsh, it is still a critical win after all. For example, you intimidate the mook but snarl at him, which might not have any consequences on its own, but might get noticed if it happens more times. Using compulsions is great too, especially the non-clan ones.
    By RAW failing the roll is a possible option for a messy. Also glade you found groups that worked, I didn't.

    Edit: Also how the dice probability works is the fault of the system, which is the main issue.
    Last edited by Vilenecromancer; 03-23-2022, 03:52 PM.

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