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Author Topic: Great Game, Lame Rule?  (Read 3655 times)

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Offline Spookie MonsterTopic starter

Great Game, Lame Rule?
« on: September 15, 2008, 05:43:34 AM »
There are a lot of great roleplaying games out there.  Even the best games tend to have some suspect rules, however.  My question to you is this: What do you consider to be the worst rule in your favorite game?  I'm talking about a real flaw in a real gem.  I'm talking about the rule that makes you throw down your dice, not toss them.  I'm talking about the rule that makes your fellow players shout, "The same mind who came up with that smooth combat system came up with this?"  I'm talking about the rule that makes your perplexed game master carefully read the passage in which the rule appears, then reread it, then reread it again, then finally close the book and quietly say, "You know, let's just ignore that one for now."

Maidens and monsters, I ask you: What's the lamest rule in your favorite game?

Spel

Offline Xillen

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #1 on: September 15, 2008, 08:58:20 AM »
Rolling for HP.

Seriously, how can someone that has a permanent influence on your character be so completely flunky?

Online Jeramiahh

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #2 on: September 15, 2008, 08:00:12 PM »
Hell, rolling for most permanent attributes. I know, I know, it's a holdover from the days of 1e, when you rolled everything straight. But, damn... nothing says 'fun' like having a guy with 4 18s team up with the guy who rolled no more than a 16. >_< Oh, and rolling HP can bugger off, too. I use 3/4 hp, at my meanest, and max, or max plus something, for most games.

Reminds me of one game I'm in; I, the party wizard, scored a marvelous 16 for my highest roll. The other two Int users (Beguiler and Duskblade) both scored an 18, AND took the campaign specific +2 Int race. >_< It came back to bite them, though; Plot favored me, significantly, I got one of the only stat increasing items we've looted, and when we converted to Pathfinder, free Int for being human, putting me ahead of all of them for Int.

As far as the question at hand: D&D's Grapple rules. I am intimately familiar with them, by now, and they, along with all other special combat maneuvers, go in a list of things my players agree neither side will abuse, for the sake of sanity.

Offline Flying Tengu

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #3 on: September 17, 2008, 03:03:42 AM »
Actually, you know, one time I did have 4 18s?  It was for a ranger, and I ended up with 18,18,18,18,16,14.  I ended up dropping out of the game due to boredom.  Being underpowered compared to the others is lame, but I was bored when everyone else was lame, and my character could pretty clearly beat the hell out of and out-think Batman.

Offline Xillen

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #4 on: September 18, 2008, 01:52:20 PM »
Point buy is so standard for me, that I don't even think of that anymore. (Well, actually, I did think about rolling for stats, but since I never ever roll for stats and always use pointbuy, it doesn't bother me, since I don't use it.)

I'm also one of the few people that considers the D&D 3.5 Grapple rules to make sense :P

Offline OldSchoolGamer

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #5 on: September 21, 2008, 07:15:34 PM »
One of the biggest knocks against the older versions of D&D, IMHO, was level limits for non-humans.  Not so much in the tabletop games (which seldom lasted long enough for level limits to be butted up against), but in the Gold Box games like Pool of Radiance and Curse of the Azure Bonds.

As far as hit points, I modded them in games I ran.  For the first two levels, characters got max.  For third level, best of three die-tosses.  For fourth and fifth level, best of two.  After that, the standard single toss.

For later versions of D&D, my pet peeve is damage caps on fireballs and lightning bolts.  Dammit, if a 26th-level wizard throws a fireball, it oughta do 26d6 damage, and in my games it does!

Offline shadowheart

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #6 on: September 21, 2008, 08:12:26 PM »
*puts on flameproof coveralls*

Lame rules, not so much, but 3.5E has so -damn many- of them that it's not enjoyable for me.  I find GURPS and HERO to be far better at handling skills because those systems aren't tied to levels and classes.  The idea of having so many skills, and feats, and exceptions, and etc.etc. makes no sense in a level-based game.

I stick with AD&D 1E and earlier, or use Castles and Crusades which gets it right.  It's level and class based, and has a skill system of a sort, but it isn't so complex as to bog the system down to a virtual crawl.

I will agree with Ty that I've never liked level limits for demi-humans, and either houserule them out of existence or modify them so that advancement doesn't stop dead for demi-human PCs.

Offline Paradox

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #7 on: September 21, 2008, 09:19:24 PM »
I haven't played in a few years, but the old rule of "the spells in a wizard's spell-book fill a page for each level of the spell" always annoyed me. Another rule that I considered to be downright broken was the fact that even e-friggin-normous creatures could only overrun one creature at a time.

Offline Revolverman

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #8 on: September 22, 2008, 01:06:04 AM »
There are alot of stupid rules in alot of stupid games, but for a stupid rule in a great game I would have to saaay....

Most Call of Cthulhu gun rules.

Especially the one that says a bolt action rifle can only be fired once per 2 combat rounds.  If I recall correctly, a CoC combat round is 4 seconds, so that means a bolt action rifle can only be fired once every 8 seconds. What are CoC characters doing, taking a drag on their cigarettes between every shot?


well, if its Fire, open the bolt, remove round, place new round in, and then close the bolt, reaim, then fire.


that could be 8 seconds.


Offline kongming

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #9 on: September 22, 2008, 01:40:28 AM »
Hmm, particularly bad rules that ruin an otherwise great game...

Note that anything I say below is my opinion, and therefore more valid than anyone else's opinion. But I can usually provide references to people who are better at arguing than me.

Mutants and Masterminds is pretty awesome. But it does have a problem (besides the "Balance? What balance" inherent to class-less, which is at least puts a roof on with the "numbers are capped by power level", though other things can work around them). Toughness saves. I didn't like the idea that any attack could potentially take you out of the game, and a few play attempts confirmed that it was annoying.

I then realised "If you play this, you will max out your Toughness save with forcefields or whatever." That made it better, but meant you had to spend resources on it. I *then* realised that thanks to Invulnerable Toughness, designed to make you immune to mooks, you can seriously benefit more from having a bad Con score:

Toughness save can be no higher than Power Level + 5 (IIRC)

It is equal to Con mod + power bonuses

Therefore, if it's PL 10, and you have a Con of +5, you can have a total of "Protection 10". If it's Invulnerable Protection (it is), that means you ignore attacks with a strength of 10 or less.

So let's take a Con of -4. You can now buy a total of Protection 19 (19-4 = 10+5). Make that Invulnerable and suddenly, you're outright immune to any attack with a strength of 19 or less. Here's the kicker: no-one can actually have an attack strength of 19 or higher at PL 10.

So essentially, the mechanic as a whole was annoying, and their solution to it (everyone buys protection, and probably makes it invulnerable so that minions can't hurt them) created its own balance issues.

That's the best I can think of. I mean, BESM I loved, but that could barely be considered a coherent set of rules, I used to love Rifts despite there not being a single good (sensible, easy-to-understand, well-implemented etc.) rule in the whole lot. 3E has a lot of minor annoying rules, but nothing that would piss me off enough to set it all on fire and play "Fuck-off Edition". And most of those have been handled by Frank & K, anyway. As for "Fuck-off Edition", well, I consider it to be built out of pure unadulterated fail.

Oh, and White Wolf games also fall into the category of "Plenty of rules I hate. But they don't spoil an otherwise good game: it wasn't good to begin with."

I can't think of anything particularly rage-inspiring in Maid, Panty Explosion, CoC or SLA Industries, the other main systems I know about.

Offline Canuckian

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Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #10 on: September 22, 2008, 01:54:51 AM »
I think I'm the only person on the face of the roleplaying Earth that likes  random dice for attributes/HP/skill points/etc.  Yes, you read that right.  I like it.  I enjoy trying to play characters with less than ideal attributes and coming up with creative solutions to compensate for them (sadly, my RP group is pathetically knowledgeable about how to break the games with uber-gear).

As for lameness breaking a great game, I'm gonna have to go with "the whole freaking system" when it comes to Rifts.  I adore the setting and just love the thought and effort that goes into that game.  But then I started playing D20 for about four years and tried to roll up my first Palladium Book's character when I bought the new Robotech RPG.  Oh gawd it was horrible.  The combat system for the mecha is so broken that it can take hours to resolve if the dice don't like you, there's very little customization possible.

Offline RubySlippers

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #11 on: September 22, 2008, 02:52:42 PM »
I also like random rolls sometimes in order I remember in Palladium Fantasy 1e I rolled horrible but decided I would be a witch, heck demon lords don't care if your all that exceptional and a sould wasn't doing her much good. If you don't like rolling for HP they have in DnD fixed average as an option where you just get the average for your class die and add con (or subtract) and there you go. But I must note when they first had DnD and the rules are kind of imitated in the Basic Fantasy RPG you only needed a 9 to qualify for any class. In 1e and later stats mattered more having value for a high stat.

If I had to say broken game rules I would say the table system for Rolemaster AKA Roll Master it was hideous when I played it I was going these people thought DnD was bad? geeesshhhhhh I'm attacking with my dagger against AT15, roll (then check a book to see what happened). Now roll her for the effect of the critical result on piercing. ARGHHHHHHH!!!! I love the classes, spell concepts and special abilities you could get but the tables blew it for me.

Offline shadowheart

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #12 on: September 22, 2008, 05:04:39 PM »
I rather like random rolls myself for stats.  Ditto for hit points after the first level.  Makes for some interesting roleplaying, in my opinion.

OH!  Speaking of broken systems.

Anyone remember Fantasy Wargaming?  Probably have to be an old-schooler to remember it.

Missing tables, missing items on tables that were present, rules that were vague or again missing.  And the most draconian rules for creating female  characters that I've ever seen (minuses to almost all attributes, including CON and CHA! cannot use weapons or be fighters, etc.)


Offline Revolverman

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #13 on: September 22, 2008, 05:06:12 PM »


Missing tables, missing items on tables that were present, rules that were vague or again missing.  And the most draconian rules for creating female  characters that I've ever seen (minuses to almost all attributes, including CON and CHA! cannot use weapons or be fighters, etc.)




sounds like sexism, the RPG

Offline shadowheart

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #14 on: September 22, 2008, 05:10:50 PM »
Sexism the game pretty much sums it up, with the excuse that "Well, this is how the Medieval era saw women."


Offline Revolverman

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #15 on: September 22, 2008, 05:14:17 PM »
Sexism the game pretty much sums it up, with the excuse that "Well, this is how the Medieval era saw women."



That sure is a lame excuse for a fantasy RPG

Offline Jefepato

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #16 on: September 22, 2008, 05:25:32 PM »
Mutants and Masterminds is pretty awesome. But it does have a problem (besides the "Balance? What balance" inherent to class-less, which is at least puts a roof on with the "numbers are capped by power level", though other things can work around them). Toughness saves. I didn't like the idea that any attack could potentially take you out of the game, and a few play attempts confirmed that it was annoying.

I then realised "If you play this, you will max out your Toughness save with forcefields or whatever." That made it better, but meant you had to spend resources on it. I *then* realised that thanks to Invulnerable Toughness, designed to make you immune to mooks, you can seriously benefit more from having a bad Con score:

Toughness save can be no higher than Power Level + 5 (IIRC)

It is equal to Con mod + power bonuses

Therefore, if it's PL 10, and you have a Con of +5, you can have a total of "Protection 10". If it's Invulnerable Protection (it is), that means you ignore attacks with a strength of 10 or less.

So let's take a Con of -4. You can now buy a total of Protection 19 (19-4 = 10+5). Make that Invulnerable and suddenly, you're outright immune to any attack with a strength of 19 or less. Here's the kicker: no-one can actually have an attack strength of 19 or higher at PL 10.

So essentially, the mechanic as a whole was annoying, and their solution to it (everyone buys protection, and probably makes it invulnerable so that minions can't hurt them) created its own balance issues.

You're reading it wrong, KM.

If you're reading 1st edition, there's no absolute cap on Toughness, but rather on bonuses from powers, and a PL 10 character can never have more than 10 ranks in a power.  One of the big flaws in 1st edition M&M was that your "mundane" attributes were totally outside all the PL caps, so dumping Constitution would put your Toughness well below that of absolutely everyone else (because they all bought CON 20 unless they were speedsters).

If you're reading 2nd edition, the cap on Toughness is PL, not PL + 5.  You can trade Defense down in favor of more Toughness, but then you can trade your attack bonus down in favor of more damage exactly the same way.  More to the point, you can buy the "Impervious" extra on your Toughness bonus even if that bonus comes purely from Constitution, so it really doesn't matter.

And in either edition, attacks can be Penetrating so as to defeat Protection (in 1st) or Impervious Toughness (in 2nd).

Offline kongming

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #17 on: September 22, 2008, 08:56:58 PM »
Thanks, Jefe. It's been a while, and I forgot the bit on trading off one stat for another. Which does sort of defeat the entire point of having the maximums there at all. Still, Penetrating attacks were there, true.

And yeah, it was 2E.

---

As for sexism the RPG, try looking for F.A.T.A.L. That takes sexism and racism to entirely new levels, while still claiming to be both historically accurate (this is what is known as a lie) and mature (this is possibly an even bigger lie).

Some of the spells were so racist that I imagine I wouldn't even be allowed to re-print them here without them being edited out (so I'll save time and not put them up). I'd also feel dirty just typing it. Someone actually made their own game, where you flip to a random page, and if it has nothing that offends you (some circles change this to "nothing racist/sexist" for the easily/not easily offended, others to "nothing that mentions sex or sex organs") then you win a point. Keep going until you get to a page that does not win you a point. At that page, you lose the game. Who ever has the most points at the end loses the least (but can hardly be called a winner).

Offline Vekseid

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #18 on: September 23, 2008, 11:10:33 AM »
I think FATAL and RaHoWa could go without in-depth discussion in polite role-playing forum circles...

Regardless, the main thing that bugs me about my favorite game - Legend of the Five Rings - is mostly that it drifted from the first edition era, which I firmly believe was a mistake.  Most of the rules adjustments I make to it tend to either be rather simple or oriented to that end.

Exalted, on the other hand... so hard to pick one, I'd have to say the entire Charm system in general.

Offline ZK

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #19 on: September 23, 2008, 12:31:03 PM »
The entire Charm system from Exalted? Pshah, Charm system in 1st Ed was easy. But relearning the whole damn thing for 2nd Ed was a headache as it leaves a lot of questions and "huh?"

I'd vote for Exalted 2nd Edition Charm System. More so when it comes to making Combos for anything that isn't a Dragon-Blood. *shudders*

Online Oniya

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #20 on: September 23, 2008, 10:23:21 PM »
I think I'm the only person on the face of the roleplaying Earth that likes  random dice for attributes/HP/skill points/etc.  Yes, you read that right.  I like it.  I enjoy trying to play characters with less than ideal attributes and coming up with creative solutions to compensate for them (sadly, my RP group is pathetically knowledgeable about how to break the games with uber-gear).

We actually had an option in our house rules that you could choose to discard your lowest or highest roll when rolling stats.  After all, an 8 is merely low average, but a 3 is a challenge!  At one point, we had a character that had a low enough Intelligence that "invisibility to animals" worked on him. 

Offline Grimm

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #21 on: September 24, 2008, 01:23:32 AM »
Wish some of my friends played tabletop rpgs.  Then I could know some rules.  Sadly, that aspect of my nerd education has been neglected.   :'( 

Offline kongming

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #22 on: September 24, 2008, 01:37:49 AM »
We actually had an option in our house rules that you could choose to discard your lowest or highest roll when rolling stats. 

One of my DMs had the roll "Roll 4 dice, and keep up to 3". So you could drop the highest, the lowest, or one in between. And you could drop multiple dice if you wanted - so if you really really wanted that Wisdom of 1, you could do it.

Offline Chris Brady

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #23 on: September 24, 2008, 06:28:38 PM »
Exalted has a GREAT setting, and on the surface the system is OK, once you REALLY get into it (Like after one session) the game just breaks down.  The Storyteller System was never designed for a Super campaign, and unless you hand wave or ignore most of the problems, it shows.  But damn if the setting isn't spectacular, though...

The one thing that drives me bonkers in D&D is the AC as an abstraction rule.  Mainly due to the fact that it's a binary effect.  Either you hit and do damage, or you don't.  Simple, easy...  Annoying because it doesn't cover things like...  Lemme use an example:

Suppose I have some one strapped to a chair.  I punch them.  They go 'Ow!' and wonder what the hell's wrong with me.  Next up they're put into a leather jack.  I punch them again, they go 'Ow!' but find it doesn't hurt as much.  Then the chain shirt replaces the leather and I hit them again.  This time they grunt with the impact, but...  It doesn't hurt!  Finally someone puts said victim into a full suit of plate.  I swing!  I hit!  I swear and shake my hand in pain, and my victim took NO DAMAGE.  Not because I missed, but because the harness absorbed the full amount of damage given by my fist.

AC doesn't do that, it's either hit or miss.  Can't really do much with the system that requires heavy armour to AVOID getting hit.  No swashbucklers, no barechested barbarians, not even samurai outside a battlefield.  Gah.

Offline shadowheart

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #24 on: September 24, 2008, 06:47:01 PM »
Well, the abstraction of the D&D system is based on combat not being a single blow per roll, but a series of blows.  In your example, the last one (plate) would be a "miss" in D&D terms. 

Damage reduction is, of course, missing.  A hit, but not as painful.  *shrug*  Then again, it's still the oldest RPG system, and based on miniatures wargaming on a scale where such distinctions are unimportant.

Online Oniya

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #25 on: September 24, 2008, 09:13:32 PM »
I think the point is that in standard D&D, given the exact same rolls and only varying the armor, at some specific point, a target goes from 'full damage' to 'no damage'.  In reality, the blow that bounces off plate would leave a nasty welt under chain, possibly a flesh wound through leather, and cleave off a limb protected by clothing only.  A more realistic rule would include a way to figure partial damage.

Offline Paradox

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #26 on: September 24, 2008, 09:16:25 PM »
Partial damage would kill a character way too quickly; also, it would make for a much more cumbersome set of rules. A certain degree of suspension of disbelief is necessary for any role playing or war game.

Offline kongming

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #27 on: September 24, 2008, 09:23:29 PM »
There is a rule for partial damage: it's called "rolling low". Try to remember that at a certain (low) level, characters are fighting chimerae, manticores and dragons. They are no longer human by any definition other than "two arms, two legs, can speak". At that point, you need to look at the Illiad or Homer for ideas on the kind of scale it is. This is not Middle Earth, THIS IS SPARTA!

As such, spears bounce off full plate and leather, and if there is even bruising underneath, they don't feel it. Using various "I have a good AC even though I'm mostly naked" rules, they either manage to dodge anything that isn't a hit, or arrows shatter against their rippling muscles and they pay it no heed. They are just as much creatures of legend as the monsters they stab in the face, and they can parry greataxes using their ego alone.

Putting it perspective like that, it's really no wonder that realism gets curb-stomped: they're not even trying to emulate the real world. Effectively, when people want realism - even realism on the level of "I want Lord of the Rings/Robin Hood", the sad truth is that they're playing the wrong game and need to find something else to emulate the genre they want.

And there's very little that annoys someone more than being told they're playing the wrong game. That's why so many people make so many house rules to try to twist a game to fit their vision: because just playing something else would be like admitting they're wrong.

Offline shadowheart

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #28 on: September 24, 2008, 09:32:51 PM »
Indeed.  Though I freely admit it's not realism .. It's Dungeons and Dragons for Crissake!

If I want realistic combat in an RPG, I will go with GURPS.  That allows for partial damage, as armor does reduce the damage one takes.

And if you -do- get hit in an unarmored area, or for more than your armor can absorb, you feel it in a hurry!

Offline Canuckian

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Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #29 on: September 24, 2008, 10:26:00 PM »
Using various "I have a good AC even though I'm mostly naked" rules,

Isn't that how most women are played in RPGs...? :P

Offline kongming

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #30 on: September 24, 2008, 10:30:31 PM »
Naturally. However there's also a large number of males who do things the same way: barbarians, swashbucklers (often barechested, but even their clothing isn't reinforced by armour), anything within months of 300 being shown etc.

Offline Canuckian

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Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #31 on: September 24, 2008, 10:36:07 PM »
anything within months of 300 being shown etc.

*snicker*

If nothing else, that movie made me feel so horribly out of shape that it inspired me to get to the gym :)

Online Jeramiahh

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #32 on: September 25, 2008, 12:19:03 AM »
To cover the AC as abstraction rule, there's a great variant rule I've used to wonderful success in a swashbuckling themed game; your base AC starts at 18, and goes down the heavier armor you wear... but you gain DR/- for wearing it. A combination of the Armor as DR variant, and the Defense Bonus variant. I really enjoyed the feel it gave, and the players liked it, too.

http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/adventuring/armorAsDamageReduction.htm
http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/adventuring/defenseBonus.htm

Offline Chris Brady

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #33 on: September 26, 2008, 01:15:59 AM »
Well, the abstraction of the D&D system is based on combat not being a single blow per roll, but a series of blows.  In your example, the last one (plate) would be a "miss" in D&D terms.

And you know what?  It drives me mad.  It's BINARY, and it destroys my suspension of disbelief.  And sadly, no one wants to try MY variant of Armour as DR rule.  It's really simple and actually fixes some of the grapple issues.

First off, your Armour's Armour Class is turned into DR, easy.  Then it breaks down like this, and this is only using the Core books at the moment:

The Fighter Classes use the Rogue BAB as their Bonus, the Wizard and Clerical types use their own, and the Rogue gets the Fighter BAB as a Base Defense Bonus.

Touch attacks are no longer base 10+Dex, but making it harder for those monsters that Grapple to connect.  And the really cool thing is that this only really affects those that wear armour, things like Dragons and others get to keep their original stats cuz it's an innate skill thing.

At least, I like it.  No one wants to try it though.   :-\

Offline kongming

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #34 on: September 26, 2008, 01:47:50 AM »
No-on ever thinks it through though - Armour as DR, as presented in Unearthed Arcana, is a terrible idea, and the sure sign of someone smoking excessive amounts of cocaine. Seriously, who wrote that shit?

*checks*

So, we have three chaps who wrote shit nobody cares about, and, wait for it, Andy "I smoke crack!" Collins!

That rule results in people getting hit in combat all the fucking time, and the damage getting reduced by such tiny amounts that it will never matter. Ever.

The method below looks a lot better - they have a scaling AC bonus that isn't connected to their armour, except this in turn means that attack bonuses of those who ignore armour are wonky. At this point, everyone needs to have the Fighter BAB and even then, some things will need a Str/Dex bonus in order to hit, because suddenly their attacks are made against people with Touch ACs much higher than they're meant to be*. Meanwhile, no-one cares about the DR they get.

For the DR to matter, it has to scale with level. Why? Because the damage you receive, and the HP pool it's taken from, both scale. And at the same time, you need to remember to scale everyone's attack rolls to this new "Touch attacks don't exist" thing. Oh, and Rogues are basically impossible to hit under your system, seeing as they add their level to their AC and wore minimal armour in the first place.

*This is also a problem with the whole "We have different BABs, and different ACs to attack" idea. That was dumb, and at least 4E did away with that shit. I'll give credit where it's due.

Offline Phaia

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #35 on: September 30, 2008, 11:05:03 PM »
The lamest game I ever played in for rules had to be Shadowrun and all the d6s.... 10--12--16 d6 is just to many too roll.
I adored the world idea and story but got to the point of not playing cause I didnt want to lug around a huge bag full of d6!!

Offline Revolverman

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #36 on: September 30, 2008, 11:35:30 PM »
The lamest game I ever played in for rules had to be Shadowrun and all the d6s.... 10--12--16 d6 is just to many too roll.
I adored the world idea and story but got to the point of not playing cause I didnt want to lug around a huge bag full of d6!!


Offline MadPanda

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Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #37 on: October 09, 2008, 11:21:55 AM »
Great game--anything using the GUMSHOE system by Pelgrane Press: Esoterrorists, Fear Itself, or Trail of Cthulhu*

Rules that suck--the gunfire rules, particularly the point-blank gun rules.

Granted, they're not Phoenix Command, but I have just enough real-world gun enthusiasts in my tabletop group to suffer through endless arguments over the deficiencies in the model...

Great game--anything by Chaosium

Rules That Suck--1) Hit point distribution.  Yikes!  2) Stats for Great Old Ones in Call of Cthulhu*.  Cool background, but if you stat it players will try to kill it...

Great game--Cthulhutech

Rules That Suck--it is possible to get a Critical Success AND a Critical Failure on the same roll.  Your chances of a crit fail also double when you increase your skill from level 1 to level 2.  Worse, according to the designers' comments on the game forums this is a feature of their system, not a bug.  (It evens out a little because you can spend your 'hero points' after the die is rolled to add more dice and get rid of the crit failure, and it costs twice as many to do this for a level 1 check, but still...grrrr...)


* Full disclosure, here: I was one of the beta playtesters of Trail of Cthulhu for Pelgrane Press.  The guy who owns my local gamestore used to work for Chaosium.  We've had some interesting discussions on the whole topic.  We like both games, by the way, but find that for some scenarios ToC runs more smoothly.  Fortunately there are conversions in ToC for using all those Chaosium books...  :)

Offline kongming

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #38 on: October 10, 2008, 11:28:42 PM »
it is possible to get a Critical Success AND a Critical Failure on the same roll.

Now, I hate critical failure rolls in general (and wouldn't particularly miss critical successes either), but that is hilarious. The very idea of a roll being "Critical. Not critically good or bad, just generally critical."

Online Oniya

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #39 on: October 11, 2008, 11:01:59 AM »
I had this image of the absolute perfect football throw - in the precisely wrong direction.

Offline Xillen

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #40 on: October 23, 2008, 03:45:32 AM »
To cover the AC as abstraction rule, there's a great variant rule I've used to wonderful success in a swashbuckling themed game; your base AC starts at 18, and goes down the heavier armor you wear... but you gain DR/- for wearing it. A combination of the Armor as DR variant, and the Defense Bonus variant. I really enjoyed the feel it gave, and the players liked it, too.

http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/adventuring/armorAsDamageReduction.htm
http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/adventuring/defenseBonus.htm

A friend of mine used something similar, back in 2nd. It needed quite a bit of tweaking, though, since the DR didn't scale with damage, so in big impacts it was much less effective than lots of small impacts. On the other hand, I was playing a roguethief, and decided to go completely without armor. The base armor of 18 raised by a high dexterity with no armor reduction was almost unhittable.

Offline RubySlippers

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #41 on: October 23, 2008, 11:27:32 AM »
I hate the D&D is not realistic in combat debate that comes up when one talks about combat. The game originally was about combat and kind of evolved into role-playing that is combat was fairly secondary to finding ways around problems, influencing NPC's and the like. In combat a round is usually a minute under the more classic game rules in that you make one (maybe more) attacks that is one blow that lands.

You want realism try Rolemaster for combat when you roll to hit against a specific armor type like AT11 on a different chart bsed on the weapon and then roll for a possible critical on a chart based on the letter of the critical- arggghhhhhhhh!

One game a local military veteran did Second American Revolution had 26 calculated scores using four stats averaged together and those used for a long list of skills. It was cool it supposed the government became a yyranny and the States broke away in another American Revolution to bring back COnstitutional government. It had military and milita character backgrounds and civilian backgrounds and was uber-realistic just the mechanics were very ,um, too realistic.

Give me simple anytime roll to hit and caluclate damage with another die - then get onto the game.

Offline Xillen

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #42 on: October 26, 2008, 06:40:52 AM »
I didn't have any problem with the D&D combat system, but you could use heavy armor for damage reduction and still keep it simple, but you need to use percentages and not static values, else it becomes useless when the damage goes up.

Offline RubySlippers

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #43 on: October 26, 2008, 10:03:24 AM »
No you don't you get a higher armor class based on the armor worn, and need to roll higher to hit said armor class. I do agree a feat in wearing armor for damage reduction might make sense but no use fixing what isn't broken.

Offline Chris Brady

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #44 on: October 27, 2008, 02:02:28 AM »
Not broken?

Can you make a Fighter into a swashbuckler type who fights with NO ARMOUR, in 3e, without Prestige Classes, without house rules, with nothing but the fighter class AND allow him to have the same defensive bonus as Full Plate +5?

I've tried using the core rules and I can't.

Offline kongming

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #45 on: October 27, 2008, 02:39:51 AM »
That is very true, however none of the house rules I've seen, including Unearthed Arcana, actually fix this either. The best I've seen is the UA variant where everyone simply gets a scaling bonus by level when not wearing armour, and the only reason to wear armour is magical enhancements such as fortification.

If you do that and say "Yes, no-one is actually going to wear full plate for the normal protection, only choosing it for immunity to rogues" then it can work - everyone, armoured or not, can have a decent AC, and the classes that normally wear armour get the bigger boost (although multiclassing basically means "You're not an arcane caster? Cool, you use the good progression.") And everyone then spends that money on other stuff - either really pumping AC by buying items of Deflection or Natural Armour, or focusing on offence (and thus negating the boost to defence everyone got).

It can work just fine, as long as you don't care that it went from "everyone wears heavy armour" to "no-one wears heavy armour".

Also, I put it to you that the fighter is complete balls, so expecting to make an effective character out of one is a losing situation from the start.

Offline Lithos

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #46 on: October 27, 2008, 07:43:25 AM »
I think that lamest thing are rules that make players:

1) SEEK combat instead of avoiding it
2) Not care about being wounded

I loved the system in second edition of L5R, where being badly wounded not only put you out of commission for months, but also lowered some of your stats permanently. Even the very simple adventures become interesting when game system actually promotes using your brain and social skills and trying to veer your way past battles that you can avoid.

Offline RubySlippers

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #47 on: October 27, 2008, 12:00:57 PM »
What about the Lord of the Rings movies and most fantasy genre heroes like Conan they go at it and never are usually mortally wounded and crippled. Heck in Sword and the Sorceror a fighter (General Talon) the hero pulled himself from a crucified position with nails in his hands and feet, fought his way to the bad guys, killed a sorceror and then his enemy all without really slowing down. This is epic fantasy with heroes that are heroes with the big H. It takes alot to take one down after a bit of advancement.

As for unarmored fighter true unlikely but I had a swashbuckler fighter/thief fighter he actively parried with one weapon and attacked with the other, had a high dex and used the terrain to his advantage. But in the game you sacrifice armor class advantage you need to think outside the box. When I ended up fighting an armored knight I used the alley in that case to climb up and use the roof, dirty tricks and lots of hit and run attacks to win. I don't care how much armor you have if your bolaed up and I can drive a dagger into the face eyeguard when your helpless I win!

True you stand there and hack it out you would lose in any case, you exploit your strong points you can win. But with the skills you need for the swashbuckler it kind of screams two classes to work. Nothing wriong with that and its easier in 3rd edition than earlier rules.

So they are not broken your just unrealsitic as to how they fight and your abilities to go after the knight in full plate and shield, you have to think hit and run. As in kind of a flashy romantic ninja sort of character.

As for fighters they are sound class they are to stand there and fight - sometimes from cover with a bow or in open combat but they are the ones that are the wall that protects lesser combatants.

Offline HairyHeretic

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Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #48 on: October 29, 2008, 02:10:31 PM »
The criticals tables in the oooooooooold MERP. I recall one fight where a PC took a swing with a sword and severed his own leg, and another one took his own eye out with an arrow (hell of a ricochet there).

Offline MadPanda

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Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #49 on: October 29, 2008, 02:11:23 PM »
Oh, man!  RoleMaster crit fumbles...

(rolls into little ball of hysterically giggling Panda)

Offline HairyHeretic

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Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #50 on: October 29, 2008, 02:14:12 PM »
Yeah, that'd be the ones. I always found it amusing you could get a decapitation result with a sling stone.

Offline MadPanda

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Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #51 on: October 29, 2008, 02:15:49 PM »
Of course, RuneQuest's fumble tables were about as silly.

(I forget the percentages, but in a unit of 1000 veteran warriors armed with axes, you could expect 6 of them to self-decapitate every round.  Let me go check my copy of Murphy's Rules...)

Offline Revolverman

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #52 on: October 29, 2008, 05:20:20 PM »
Of course, RuneQuest's fumble tables were about as silly.

(I forget the percentages, but in a unit of 1000 veteran warriors armed with axes, you could expect 6 of them to self-decapitate every round.  Let me go check my copy of Murphy's Rules...)

Ok... how are axes swung in the game? All the ways I know to swing an axe, the edge is no where near the neck, or is in a way where it cant touch it.

Online Oniya

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #53 on: October 29, 2008, 05:41:15 PM »
I think that's the point about how silly it is.  Kind of like shooting yourself in the face with an arrow takes rare talent. *points to HH's post above*

I did once take out a buffalo in-game with a slingstone.  Critical hit, with the lucky-shot house rules that our GM implemented to make people think farther than 'Heavy crossbow maxes out at 18 hp of damage.  I can take it even without armor.'  We always explained it as the stone went in one ear and out the other.

Offline MadPanda

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Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #54 on: October 29, 2008, 05:53:52 PM »
I remembered incorrectly.

(ahem)

Murphy's Rules, Second Edition 1988 (Steve Jackson Games)
Page 21

"In a 30 minute Runequest battle involving 6000 armored, experienced warriors using Great Axes, more than 150 will decapitate themselves and another 600 will chop off their own arms or legs."


Offline Jefepato

Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #55 on: October 29, 2008, 09:17:45 PM »
I remembered incorrectly.

(ahem)

Murphy's Rules, Second Edition 1988 (Steve Jackson Games)
Page 21

"In a 30 minute Runequest battle involving 6000 armored, experienced warriors using Great Axes, more than 150 will decapitate themselves and another 600 will chop off their own arms or legs."

I heard once that that was entirely deliberate, but I'm not very familiar with RuneQuest or its designers, so I have no idea how good my information is.

Offline MadPanda

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Re: Great Game, Lame Rule?
« Reply #56 on: October 29, 2008, 09:57:26 PM »
Basically if you extrapolate from the critical fumble tables, a large enough number of contestants over a long enough period of time will give the mentioned results.   :)  I dread to see what would happen were we to replicate this with, say, anything from the Roll-master line of rules...