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DnD4e: Players Roll Defense Check vs. DM Roll Enemy Attacks

   
Static damage is correct.

There would be two values: average dice (rounded down) for regular hits and maximum damage for critical hits. I know, more math, but there's not much work to it at all, I think. Besides, you'd only be doing the math once as opposed to math every time you roll damage.

I'm on the fence whether or not extra damage dice (sneak attack, magic weapon critical, etc.) should also be static or random.

Rolling for damage is probably one of the most enjoyable die rolls in the game. Why would you remove that to make room for a more cumbersome version of a to-hit system that already works?

I wouldn't rail against getting rid of rolling for damage.. I had this discussion during the genesis of another game.. How 4e (and most d20 systems) set you up for multiple checks for success.. You roll one di to hit.. If that rolls low, you pretty much get nothing.. If you do roll well on that die, then you roll another to determine just "how well" you did.. That second di comes up low, also sucks and can be barely better than nothing.. Then you compare the amount of damage you did versus there HP.. Can also feel like nothing if there's still a big number sitting in that HP pool.. Eliminating one of those doesn't seem like a bad thing IMHO

Though I don't see this as being a justification to start having players rolling defense rather than monsters rolling attacks, but I don't see static damage being a big deal at all.. It does cut down on some math.. Have a longsword and an 18 strength? When it hits it does 8 damage.. Pure and simple.. No need to roll your 1d8+4.. Losing the damage di might even be one of the WotC suggestions for speeding up combat.

@Greyfeld: Although I think your question was rhetorical to add emphasis to your opinion, I will be thorough and answer it with a flashback:
Quote:
Originally Posted by nolifeonline View Post
There would be less dice rolling and math if damage dice rolls were eliminated.
@Witchslasher: While on the topic of eliminating damage dice, forget the defense check system and tell me what you think of this system for static damage.

There are three static damage values: low/medium/high

Low: Attack roll is equal to the defense (barely hit). Minimize damage dice (as if they all resulted in 1's).
Medium: Attack roll is greater than the defense (but not a critical). Average damage dice (rounded down).
High: Attack roll is a critical hit. Maximize damage dice (same as the regular rules).
Extra damage dice are rolled to add an element of randomness.
Damage dice are rolled when players choose to use the effect of powers allowing damage dice to be rerolled.

Therefore, an attack that deals 1d6+4 damage would have static damage values 5/7/10.

IMO that adds a layer of unnecessary complexity.. You'll have to create what constitutes a low, medium, and high hit, which may not be the same as you go up in level.. Also this puts an even greater emphasis on pumping up your attack roll (in a game that already emphasizes this), because a greater attack roll will not only increase your odds of hitting, but will make you hit harder.

I'd simplify and just go with average damage, all the time except criticals which do max damage.. There's not a lot of things I can think of that cause you to reroll damage dice.. Brutal is the only one that comes up semi often and Brutal just changes your minimum di roll.. Like an Executioner's Axe is a 1d12 weapon with brutal 2, so always does 3-12, average being 7.5, round down to 7.. Which would be better than your greataxe that does 1d12 without brutal, only doing 6 per hit.. So Brutal still gives you a bit better damage. I think other stuff that rerolls damage dice are few and far between.

I'd even say go ahead and have extra dice be averaged too.. So your 1d6+4 does 7 damage. If this character is a ranger and was hitting his Hunter's Quarry, it does an extra 3. Completely eliminate the need to roll damage.

Really I guess it depends on what your goal is. I'm kind of talking in terms of simplifying the game and possibly making it run a bit faster, most of what you've proposed is things that add more layers of complexity to it. Making 4e combat "more involved" seems like a step in the wrong direction considering how involved 4e combat already is.

I don't think you understood the static damage low/medium/high system. Maybe that is my fault.

When a player hits an enemy, there are three possible damage outcomes:

1. If the attack result is the same as the defense, then the static damage is low.

Defense is 16 and Attack result is 16 = low damage
1d6+4 = 5 damage (1+4)

2. If the attack result is greater than the defense, but not a critical hit, then the static damage is medium.

Defense is 16 and Attack result is 17+ = medium damage
1d6+4 = 7 damage (3+4)

3. If the attack result is a critical hit, then the static damage is high.

Defense is 16 and Attack result is a critical hit = high damage
1d6+4 = 10 damage (6+4)

As usual, the player will announce the attack result and the DM will check the enemy's defense and declare if the attack hit and whether the damage is low/medium/high so that the player can then call out the damage result.

This system of determining the level of static damage is not at all affected by level. It also does not put a greater emphasis on boosting attack rolls than what normally exists.

I agree with your handling of weapons with the Brutal keyword. It is exactly what I would do.

Also, the extra damage dice can be averaged as well. It's an option that can go either way and I don't think it affects or is affected by other rules, so it's whatever the player/DM prefer.

However, I can't just ignore powers with the effect to reroll damage dice just because there are not that many. They must be acknowledged and factored into the system, because at some point it will come up.

A player would only want to "reroll" damage when the damage result was either low or medium. No point in "rerolling" high damage, because it is already maximized. A player that chooses to "reroll" would then ignore the static damage result of the attack that hit and actually roll the damage dice to determine the result. These powers would most likely be used when the damage result was low, because that damage is minimized as if the damage dice had all resulted in 1's. There would be no risk.

I hope I made that clearer.

That's about what I thought you were talking about.. For starters, It also doesn't come up enough (hitting the EXACT number you need) to warrant a rule for it IMO..

What's the point of punishing player with minimum damage for just barely hitting? 4e itself doesn't do anything similar (you don't get a penalty to damage for just barely hitting), so I don't see why switching to average damage should have such a rule. Criticals I can understand, that's built into the system already.

Like the extra damage dice being rolled, the low damage is an option that could be used if the player/DM prefer.

What other ways could "rerolling" be implemented into the static damage system?

The only option I see for "rerolling" is to have the player roll the damage dice and use the result in place of the average damage. It would always be more likely than not that the player would either roll more damage than the average or equal the average. Being able to "reroll" would be useful when the player thinks that the average damage is just a little too low to defeat an enemy. Making the "reroll" and dishing out more damage than the average could make the difference.

I can't think of a way to rerolling to be integrated into a static damage set of rules.. I suppose if it came up just give the option or rolling damage rather than using static damage.. Rerolling damage seems few and far between.. I've played numerous 4e games and I think I've had maybe 1 character that had an ability like that.. I wouldn't try and make houserules to try and cover every possible scenario, you'd just be setting yourself up for a project you can't win.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nolifeonline View Post
DC 12 + enemy's attack bonus keeps the hit/miss ratio the same as if the attack was rolled by the DM.
DC 21 + attack bonus keeps the hit/miss ratio the same.

Simple example: 19 AC and +5 attack bonus. The attacker must roll a 15+ to hit (assuming tie goes to the player always). That's 6 numbers, or 30% of the time, that he hits.

The player rolls 1d20+19 vs 12+5. He only fails on a 1, so the attack hits on one number or 5% of the time.
If the player rolls 1d20+19 vs 21+5, he fails on 1-6 (assuming tie goes to the player), or 6 numbers and 30% of the time.

I don't think it's a worthwhile system, though. The DM rolls dice faster than the players, so it would significantly delay the monsters' turns and prolong battles. Furthermore, rolling the dice isn't what's fun in D&D - doing things is fun in D&D. It just so happens that rolling dice is heavily correlated to doing things. Adding unnecessary dice rolls for not doing things wouldn't help anything.

That said, an argument could be made for beating saves. For example, when you cast a spell, it's like your attack. Perhaps it's justifiable that you roll DC+1d20 vs save+21 because you are on the offensive.

Cheers,
Kernal




 

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