Jun 7, 2015

Final Tally of Changes. Part I: Characters.

We're 2-4 weeks away from release and that means I need to get you all up to speed on things! Today on the slate: Miracles and Genre Powers. As usual, you can read more about all these in the Kickstarter Update page, but if you're reading this blog (and, more importantly, the comments section) then much of this (but not all!) will should be familiar to you.

Miracles:

The biggest change here is that Miracle Specializations are getting changed rom being souce-based to being effects-based. As of the V2 Preview, the list of possible Specializations for Electricity include (but are not limited to):Thunderstorms, Powering Objects, Frying Electronics, Tesla Performances, ‘Tuning in’ to Digital Communications. Now the list is: Offensive Tests, Electronics Tests, All other uses.

Here's the list:
  • Electricity: Offensive Tests, Electronics Tests, All other uses.
  • Force: Fitness Tests, Intelligence Tests.
  • Fortune: Equipment Tests, All other uses.
  • Matter: Improving or breaking items, All other uses.
  • Phantasm: Offensive Tests, All other uses.
  • Phasing: Passing through objects, Self-Defense.
  • Probing: Telepathy, Mind-reading, Hypnotic Suggestion.
  • Sight: Investigation, other uses of Awareness.
  • Somatics: Offensive Tests, All other uses.
  • Temperature: Cold, Heat.
Notice the exception to the rule at the end. Temperature makes more sense if you divide users between fire and ice powers. There is a sidebar right below the text telling you to that it works just as well if you change both options to “Offensive Tests” and “other Charm Tests” though.

Four specific Miracles also got changed slightly:
  • Matter: It no longer makes all Craftsmanship Tests instantaneous, instead it reduces the required time for Extended Tests by one category (from one Week to one Day to one Hour to one Minute to Instantaneous) at the cost of one Disadvantage per tier you’d like to decrease
  • Phasing: Instead of making you immune to attacks on a high enough result, Defending yourself via Phasing adds your Fitness to your Defense then rolls a Fitness Test to inflict a Disadvantage to attacks against you for each multiple of 5 met with the result.
  • Sight: No longer a Help Test targeting yourself, instead it adds an Advantage to any Awareness Test.
  • Somatics: No longer a Help Test targeting yourself, instead it adds an Advantage to any Fitness Test.
The final thing to note is that the list of sample tests has gotten touched up a little too to make all miracles be closer in power to each other.

Genre Powers:

  • Believe in Myself: This Power's Antimaim lasts 3 rounds now
  • Come at me Bro: Now it has a range of 5 Zones around the user.
  • You are Going Down: No longer reduces the target's Defense by 5, instead it grants an Advantage to all Might Tests against the target within a 5 Zone radius from you.
  • Trump Card: Grants you one Weapon until end of operation but can now be repeated.
  • Mind Over Matter: It loses the Antimaim effect but, instead, it protects everyone in a radius of 5 Zones from stat debuffs.
  • Take One for the Team: It inflicts a Disadvantage to all Might Tests made against the Ally you just shielded for a Round.
That about sums it up. Next week we get a more sizable update with all the Upgrade and Weapon changes since the V2 Preview.

4 comments:

  1. Some input on these:
    1: You Are Going Down: Previously, it was definitely too strong. With the new version, +1 advantage seems about right, but the 5 Zone limit seems completely unnecessary. Fights quickly devolve into multiple separated 'strike teams' from experience, and it feels pretty meh that 2/3rds of the team are unlikely to benefit from it when the trash is cleared and the rival/boss is left.

    2: Take One For The Team: Definitely a step in the right direction, though i it feels weird that you're not allowed to move your ally as part of the reaction. Might be too powerful though?

    Other mecha stuff:
    Anti-air missiles could use a small buff. Even with the high number of Flyers the GM's been throwing at us, it doesn't seem like a competitive pickup. Something like Long Range would be thematic and balanced.

    The previous nerf to Invincible Alloy was probably pretty unnecessary. It's the most holistic antimaim definitely, but 2 energy is a LOT to pay when you consider it's usually on top of what you were going to spend on the weapons and active defenses you just un-maimed anyway. I suggest either removing the 'sturdy' rider and dropping it back to 15, or dropping the energy cost down 1.

    More types of Techniques would be nice.

    Overall, really like the changes so far though! Can't wait for release!

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    1. Thanks for the feedback! Here's some of my thoughts for why those changes happened the way they did:

      1- Look at it this way: You do have to invest more effort into your positioning before the focus fire begins, but it also means enemies have to do the same if they want to shoot one of your team down. This way you know that leadery types surrounding themselves with mooks are going to pull this on you.

      2- Repositioning is tricky, yeah. The main problem here would be that separating the tank from its allies and cornering them would be trivially easy to counter. If the power only works once per operation that's fine but that makes it worse at actually tanking reliably soooooooo we're back to square one.

      3- Anti Air Missiles got buffed indeed! Two Advantages instead of one make it like a Beam Rifle but without the Energy cost.

      4-I would have been fine keeping them all as they were (well, except for Expansion Pack, for the reasons described previously) but Invincible Alloy was the only one more people agreed it needed a nerf than it didn't, and I wanted to avoid messing with the math that made it work.

      I might, however, end up making a variant without the survival effect in the expansion just for the old fans.

      More Techniques coming in the expansion, fortunately!

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  2. The SRD was rather impressive; a lot of things the old playtest had trouble with.

    One thing that really sticks out to me though is Extreme Terrain (in particular in conjunction with the minefield ability): There's no way to increase the difficulty, but stats can go higher than ever. Is it the intention that as power levels increase, extreme terrain (or artificially generated ones) become less and less effective?

    Or is there some way to improve the output of such a thing?

    If it's just an omission, might I suggest allowing the surprise minefield to use something like 5+Systems instead, to represent increasingly elaborate and/or insidious "traps" or reality-shredding damage fields?

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    Replies
    1. Partly, yeah, that is the intent. Extreme terrain is deadly early on, but you can deal with it much easier afterwards.The way to make extreme terrain hit harder is through debuffs (ensnaring trap being the prime example) or stacking multiple instances of it. Other than that, you have fire at will to hit someone for damage that scales up with your systems.

      I thought it was made explicit somewhere in the rules already that stacking extreme terrain adds a disadvantage to the test, but it isn't anywhere. Whoops. That's another thing to add later I guess.

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