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Old October 14, 2011, 22:43   #1
Therem Harth
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Replacing XP penalties

The way things are now, "easy" races are penalized with slower leveling. IMO this at best doesn't work well, and at worst penalizes the player by making the game slower and less interesting.

I think a better way to handle the issue of easy races is to separate stat bonuses and maximum stat caps. Mortal characters would have relatively high maximum stats. Immortal characters, or ones starting with "superhuman" capabilities, would have lower max stat, even though they got starting bonuses to those stats. Maximize and non-maximize modes would be done away with.

So for example...

Humans get zilcho stat boosts or other perks. But their maximum is something like 18/180 for each stat (not counting class modifiers), instead of the current 18/100.

Elves and Half-elves have roughly the same stat caps as humans.

Dunadan get the usual great stats at the beginning of the game. But they cannot easily grow beyond the fates they were born to, and make themselves true experts at their callings. Dunadan's internal stats are thus capped at around 18/60.

High-elves, the mighty immortals of legend, are puppets of Fate. They cannot become anything more than their fate demands; their stats are capped at 18/30 or thereabouts.

Orcs and Kobolds have shoddy mental stats to start with, but underneath their brute nature lies a mad, fiendish intelligence waiting to be awoken. STR, DEX, and CON caps are be lower than for humans, maybe 18/120; but INT and WIS are allowed to reach the absolute maximum of 18/220. I'm going for a "mad sorceror" vibe here - a level 40+ Orc Mage should be truly fearsome, assuming you can get one that far.

Half-trolls do not have their goblin cousins' untapped intellect; they're just fairly dumb. Their mental stats are capped at 18/60. But their STR and CON can reach 18/220, making them better warriors than any other race.

What do you guys think of this? Too hackish or kludgy, or is it viable?

(And yes, it does grossly violate Tolkien canon. That's one of the reasons I came up with it. )

Last edited by Therem Harth; October 14, 2011 at 22:45. Reason: Removed redundant use of "dumb." Dumb da dumb dumb.
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Old October 14, 2011, 22:58   #2
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to be honest, that seems totally out of control, but I DO think that something like a slightly higher natural maximum might be appropriate for, say humans, who currently have no other real bonus - as it's fairly easy to hit level 50 if you dive deep and hang out for a while, no matter what race/class you use. the better option might be to have human skills rise much faster with levels, so that they can be competitive near their early endgame, while, of course, being very frail near the start and having no inherent STAT bonuses.
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Old October 14, 2011, 23:00   #3
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I have to say this just generally feels weird. Plus, High-Elves should be easy -- they're one of the go-to races for newbies (the others being Dunadan and Half-Troll) -- so I'm not too fussed about the experience penalty not really being significant.

It also really seems strange that an orc or a kobold can get "naturally" smarter than a high-elf. Some Tolkeinian races are Just Better.
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Old October 14, 2011, 23:10   #4
Therem Harth
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Like I said, I was thinking of the "mad goblin mage" archetype. I *think* it's an archetype anyway...

But yes, I see where you're coming from.
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Old October 15, 2011, 00:22   #5
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Putting this into Vanilla would seriously annoy me. Seems like pure variant territory to me.
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Old October 15, 2011, 04:23   #6
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I don't know about the rest but kobolds are already extremely powerful with just poison resistance, they have a bigger selection of gear and can wear stat boosting items instead of poison resistance early. Really makes ironman a lot easier.
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Old October 21, 2011, 08:38   #7
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I agree with Zyphyr that this should be in a variant. I like the amplified 'weak in the beginning strong in the end' and the reverse dynamic. This already exists for say mages and warriors but it would be interesting to see it for races as well.

IMO the races do not have to be balanced. There is no difficulty setting in Angband and the race/class choices provide one. Maybe there should be(maybe there is) a guide for new players that says which races and classes are the easiest.
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