TSP: Out of Character Discussion

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Far beyond the edge of the inhabited universe lies the Silent Planet, a fertile but isolated world rumoured to be the final resting place for a number of lost interplanetary expeditions. Despite the planet’s deadly reputation, legends of riches, vast resource deposits, and lost alien technology tempt those brave, or foolish, enough to take the risk. Will the Silent Planet’s latest batch of colonists quell its dangerous wildlife and hostile inhabitants, or will they end up as another in a long line of expeditions that have simply ‘gone silent’?

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TSP: Out of Character Discussion

Postby Calvin » Tue May 03, 2016 4:06 pm

As indicated by the title, this is the OOC thread.
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Re: TSP: Out of Character Discussion

Postby Herzog » Tue May 03, 2016 4:22 pm

checking in.
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Re: TSP: Out of Character Discussion

Postby PMiller » Wed May 04, 2016 3:43 am

So Medic and Gunslinger still?
I was thinking Ranger in first look.
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Re: TSP: Out of Character Discussion

Postby Herzog » Wed May 04, 2016 8:30 am

So far...depends on what the rest of the party make up is going to be:

Gunslinger has an interesting skill set:

The notables are:

Bluff
Craft
Handle Animal
Heal
Intimidate
Know (engineering)
Know (local)
Profession
Survival

Obviously, I'll be putting in points into the knowledge skills, as well as survival. I think I can find a trait that will give stealth as a class skill. I am thinking that I would also put a point into Craft (chemistry) as that is what craft alchemy becomes in the conversion. Gunsmithing is a free feat, that allows firearms crafting and such. Craft (chemistry) would allow for munitions crafting, and i suppose other type of explosives. The explosives angle works with know(engineering) since one would need structural knowledge to effective use explosives...at least on the buildings and such.

I am toying with a rank in profession as well. But it is so open ended, I am not sure where to go from there...

So with that in mind, a jack of trades survivalist/explosives/weaponsmith/engineering expert?
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Re: TSP: Out of Character Discussion

Postby Argo » Wed May 04, 2016 11:43 am

Very cool, glad we are at the point where we can have this discussion.

I had mentioned before in the interest thread the idea of us playing family members, like a group of siblings. Just wanted to mention it again in case anyone missed it. Not a big deal if it isn't to your preference, of course. I imagine that for the three of you, being related might be kind of old hat and you'd rather to do something else, haha. But if you guys like it, it would give us a reason to stick together and do this IC, and would be fodder for RP ("mom always did like you best", or whatever.)

I have an idea for my character but I'm not sure how to execute it. The inspiration is the biotics from Mass Effect. I was thinking of a corporation's (possibly) illegal genetic modifications that would turn a human into...something else. Biotech, nanotech, alien gene splicing. The idea would be to make humans better suited for varying alien environments, ones that could adapt to things like lower or heavier gravity or different atmospheric compositions, and could also bring psychic/psionic/nanotech "powers" into play. The gene tailoring would be specific to the needs of whatever pursuit that particular corp was engaged in.

I'm thinking the character might have escaped the clutches of the corp and returned to his family (if we do play siblings/family members), or is simply a drifter looking for work on the fringes of society where the corp might not find him again (if we don't go with the familial ties). Perhaps there is a controversy in this setting over the rights of genetically engineered people like him, with some people saying that slavery of any kind is just not okay, and that the engineered people should be emancipated.

The character would have "powers" that come from this genetic tailoring. Calvin, you mentioned reskinned mage and psionic classes as a possibility:

Magic and Psionics will be allowed, though think Mass Effect/Borderlands/Star Wars in terms of flavor. The Sorcerer's Nanite, Protean or Starsoul bloodline, as well as the Oracle's Dark Tapestry, Solar and Heavens (minus Mantle of Moonlight) Mysteries and pretty much any of the Psionic classes could work well.


My first thought was a druid, but I think that would be too much overlap with what we have so far vis-a-vis the other characters' skillsets and initial concepts. I can make the feel of it more "mage-like", instead.

I can look into any of those classes you suggested more closely if this general concept works, Calvin.
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Re: TSP: Out of Character Discussion

Postby Calvin » Wed May 04, 2016 4:12 pm

PMiller wrote:I was thinking Ranger in first look.

Are you looking at the Santiago Seeker archetype or are you thinking about another variant?

Herzog wrote:Obviously, I'll be putting in points into the knowledge skills, as well as survival. I think I can find a trait that will give stealth as a class skill. I am thinking that I would also put a point into Craft (chemistry) as that is what craft alchemy becomes in the conversion. Gunsmithing is a free feat, that allows firearms crafting and such. Craft (chemistry) would allow for munitions crafting, and i suppose other type of explosives.

I'm planning on adding a few new types of explosives and ammunition, mostly based on standard PF items (ex. a smoke grenade that functions like a smokestick). The C4 from the PF Modern conversion Argo posted earlier could probably be added too.

I"m also thinking about revamping the ranged weapons a bit. In the Santiago conversion guide, pistols and laser pistols act like reskinned shortbows and longbows, respectively, neither requiring an action to reload, while rifles act as reskinned crossbows, which do more damage but require an action to reload. I'm thinking of changing both laser pistols and rifles to act like bows instead, meaning they don't require an action to reload, and having all conventional firearms require an action to reload instead.

The explosives angle works with know(engineering) since one would need structural knowledge to effective use explosives...at least on the buildings and such.

At very least knowledge (engineering) would probably be required for controlled demolition. For other objects, it might be used to identify their weak point (depending on the object in question), or, for example, do something like blow open a safe without damaging its contents.

I am toying with a rank in profession as well. But it is so open ended, I am not sure where to go from there...

I'm not sure either. Maybe something related to the character's background or the role they are planning to play in the colony? I'm not sure it will have much use, mechanics-wise, though, since with Kingmaker's rules, the character's role in the colony is handled just with an ability score.

Argo wrote:I have an idea for my character but I'm not sure how to execute it. The inspiration is the biotics from Mass Effect. I was thinking of a corporation's (possibly) illegal genetic modifications that would turn a human into...something else. Biotech, nanotech, alien gene splicing. The idea would be to make humans better suited for varying alien environments, ones that could adapt to things like lower or heavier gravity or different atmospheric compositions, and could also bring psychic/psionic/nanotech "powers" into play. The gene tailoring would be specific to the needs of whatever pursuit that particular corp was engaged in.

I'm thinking the character might have escaped the clutches of the corp and returned to his family (if we do play siblings/family members), or is simply a drifter looking for work on the fringes of society where the corp might not find him again (if we don't go with the familial ties). Perhaps there is a controversy in this setting over the rights of genetically engineered people like him, with some people saying that slavery of any kind is just not okay, and that the engineered people should be emancipated.

Genetic engineering would be accepted in cases where it is medically necessary, but the type of modifications you are describing would be highly controversial and illegal. Those type of experiments would be performed illegally by ethically-questionable corporations on remote planets, far from prying eyes. The Pitax Corporation, in particular, is rumoured to be involved in illegal genetic experiments, as well as being an all-around shady organization that is said to have links to criminal groups.

I can look into any of those classes you suggested more closely if this general concept works, Calvin.

The concept works with what I have planned. :wink:
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Re: TSP: Out of Character Discussion

Postby Herzog » Wed May 04, 2016 5:30 pm

Calvin wrote:I"m also thinking about revamping the ranged weapons a bit. In the Santiago conversion guide, pistols and laser pistols act like reskinned shortbows and longbows, respectively, neither requiring an action to reload, while rifles act as reskinned crossbows, which do more damage but require an action to reload. I'm thinking of changing both laser pistols and rifles to act like bows instead, meaning they don't require an action to reload, and having all conventional firearms require an action to reload instead.


I would consider pulling the d20 modern rules for firearms, and reloads. Just make laser weapons have very large capacities compared to their conventional equivalents as one of their advantages. Might have to balance it with cost.

D20 Modern wrote:Rate of Fire: Some ranged weapons have a rate of fire of 1, which simply means they can be employed once per round and then must be reloaded or replaced. Firearms, which operate through many different forms of internal mechanisms, have varying rates of fire. The three possible rates of fire for handguns, longarms, and heavy weapons are single shot, semiautomatic, and automatic.

Single Shot: A weapon with the single shot rate of fire requires the user to manually operate the action (the mechanism that feeds and cocks the weapon) between each shot. Pump shotguns and bolt-action rifles are examples of firearms with single shot rates of fire. A weapon with the single shot rate of fire can fire only one shot per attack, even if the user has a feat or other ability that normally allow more than one shot per attack.

Semiautomatic (S): Most firearms have the semiautomatic rate of fire. These firearms feed and cock themselves with each shot. A semiautomatic weapon fires one shot per attack (effectively acting as a single shot weapon), but some feats allow characters armed with semiautomatic weapons to fire shots in rapid successions, getting in more than one shot per attack.

Automatic (A): Automatic weapons fire a burst or stream of shots with a single squeeze of the trigger. Only weapons with the automatic rate of fire can be set on autofire or be used with feats that take advantage of automatic fire.
------------------------
Magazine: The weapon’s magazine capacity and type are given in this column. The amount of ammunition a weapon carries, and hence how many shots it can fire before needing to be reloaded, is determined by its magazine capacity. How the firearm is reloaded depends upon its magazine type. The number in this entry is the magazine’s capacity in shots; the word that follows the number indicates the magazine type: box, cylinder, or internal. A fourth type, linked, has an unlimited capacity; for this reason the entry does not also have a number. Weapons with a dash in this column have no magazines; they are generally thrown weapons, or weapons (such as bows) that are loaded as part of the firing process.

Box: A box magazine is any type of magazine that can be removed and reloaded separately from the weapon.

Cylinder: A revolver keeps its ammunition in a cylinder, which is part of the weapon and serves as the firing chamber for each round as well. Unlike box magazines, cylinders can’t be removed, and they must be reloaded by hand. However, most revolvers can be used with a speed loader. Using a speed loader is much like inserting a box magazine into a weapon. Without a speed loader, a firearm with a cylinder magazine must be loaded by hand.

Internal: Some weapons keep their ammunition in an internal space, which must be loaded by hand. This is the case with most shotguns, as well as some rifles.

Linked: Some machine guns use linked ammunition. The bullets are chained together with small metal clips, forming a belt. Typically, a belt holds 50 bullets; any number of belts can be clipped together. In military units, as the gunner fires, an assistant clips new ammunition belts together, keeping the weapon fed.
----------------------
Reloading Firearms

Reloading a firearm with an already filled box magazine or speed loader is a move action. Refilling a box magazine or a speed loader, or reloading a revolver without a speed loader or any weapon with an internal magazine, is a full-round action.

Loading a belt of linked ammunition is a full-round action. Linking two belts together is a move action.


Or consider the PF Modern conversion, which is similair:

PF Modern wrote:Capacity

A firearm's capacity is the number of shots it can hold at one time. When making a full-attack action, you may fire a firearm as many times in a round as you have attacks, up to this limit, unless you can reload the weapon as a swift or free action while making a full-attack action.
Loading a Firearm

You need at least one hand free to load one-handed and two-handed firearms. In the case of two-handed firearms, you hold the weapon in one hand and load it with the other—you only need to hold it in two hands to aim and shoot the firearm.

The Rapid Reload feat reduces the time required to load one-handed and two-handed firearms.

Loading any firearm provokes attacks of opportunity.

Advanced firearms that are chamber (Cylinder or Internal) loaded use a move action to load a one-handed or a two-handed advanced firearm to its full capacity.

Reloading a firearm with an already filled box magazine or speed loader is a swift action.

These reloading actions are move actions: refilling a box magazine or speed-loader, reloading a revolver without a speed-loader, or reloading any internal magazine.

Loading a belt of linked ammunition is an immediate action. Linking two belts together is a swift action.


Of course, this would mean we would have to define a capacity size, and rate of fire for all firearms we wish to use...
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Re: TSP: Out of Character Discussion

Postby PMiller » Thu May 05, 2016 6:10 am

Hmm, looking at the Seeker and Herzog's idea for the Gunslinger, maybe that is too much overlap. I was paging through the Player's Guide some more and rethinking things.

I am still wondering if the Medic might be too hard for LM to play and perhaps he could do better with Engineer Mechanic instead. Neither are particularly easy, but then he is getting older and smarter every year. I will discuss more with him and perhaps he and I will cover those two roles and classes.

Before you brought it up, Argo. He and I discussed familial relationship IC already. Since I thought it better for him if he played a younger character, that family tie would make a logical sense to why his character would be along when younger than expected. We were considering siblings with several years difference and even thought about parent of the other (laughing afterwards). I am fine with family ties all around... we have not actually ever done that in our games. It certainly would be a good tie for the genetically modified one.

re: Firearms. Santiago really tried to limit them in their conversion. I would agree that we can assume the futuristic firearms (Slugthrowers and Lasers) would be all semi-automatic weapons and then require Swift Action to reload the clip/magazine/power cell for a pistol, Move Action for a Rifle because that it is a two-handed weapon and will take more time to reload and return to firing. Rapid Reload feat could reduce that. But when actually firing, Rapid Shot would be applicable like it was a bow and your BAB will determine Rate of Fire as it translates to skill in using the weapon.

If we are not really going to need to track ammo, then we need not really delve into it much beyond rate of fire. Futuristic weapons could easily have high capacity magazines anyway.
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Re: TSP: Out of Character Discussion

Postby Argo » Thu May 05, 2016 11:22 am

Cool, thanks for the feedback on the concept, Calvin. I'll go with that and see what class is the best fit.

PMiller, thanks for the feedback on the siblings concept from you and LMiller. Now if Herzog is also agreeable, we can go with that. I have long wanted to play siblings in a game, and this seems like the ideal game to do it in, since we're already so familiar with each other's styles. I'm sure we'll have fun brainstorming about what the parents were like, and various family dynamics. Can't wait for that.

As for my character, I was thinking that he is not the oldest, so perhaps younger than PMiller and Herzog, but older than LMiller. He was a troublemaker as a kid, and perhaps the older characters had to bail him out of various things. One day, however, he went too far and got into big trouble that they couldn't get him out of it. Maybe he was jailed on some distant planet, and by the time the siblings got there to help, he had disappeared. This, of course, was when Pitax snapped him up and secreted him away, thinking that he was a criminal that wouldn't be missed. Perhaps the other siblings looked for him but had no luck finding him, possibly hearing rumors of Pitax's involvement (up to Calvin), but the trail went cold and they thought he was lost.

Time passed and he eventually showed up again, changed and strange, an escapee from Pitax. I'm going to play it a little creepy, like maybe he talks about himself in the third person now, though he's committed to helping the family with this venture.

If no one wants the "healer" role or can't work it into their portfolio, I can slant the powers in that direction, as well.
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Re: TSP: Out of Character Discussion

Postby Calvin » Fri May 06, 2016 12:13 pm

Herzog wrote:I would consider pulling the d20 modern rules for firearms, and reloads. Just make laser weapons have very large capacities compared to their conventional equivalents as one of their advantages. Might have to balance it with cost.

[...]

Or consider the PF Modern conversion, which is similair:

PMiller wrote:re: Firearms. Santiago really tried to limit them in their conversion. I would agree that we can assume the futuristic firearms (Slugthrowers and Lasers) would be all semi-automatic weapons and then require Swift Action to reload the clip/magazine/power cell for a pistol, Move Action for a Rifle because that it is a two-handed weapon and will take more time to reload and return to firing. Rapid Reload feat could reduce that. But when actually firing, Rapid Shot would be applicable like it was a bow and your BAB will determine Rate of Fire as it translates to skill in using the weapon.

I want to try to avoid power creep, but looking at the PF Modern firearms again, if we drop a damage die off all weapons, that would put the damage done by the compound bow on par with PF's longbow and the flamethrower on par with a shotgun using dragon's breath round, meaning that I might be able to use some of the weapons there as templates. For example, the M4 Carbine, with no kick and a large magazine, could serve as a suitable analogue for a laser rifle.

Give me a couple days and I'll see what I can come up with. Let me know if there are any specific types of weapons you see your character using and I'll try to come up with stats for it.

If we are not really going to need to track ammo, then we need not really delve into it much beyond rate of fire. Futuristic weapons could easily have high capacity magazines anyway.

I'd say we can forego tracking ammo out of combat since the gunslinger has the ability to cheaply and easily manufacture ammo. In combat, however, I'd say ammo should still be kept track of for reloads, since not every weapon will have a high-capacity magazine and liberal use of autofire may require an early reload.

Argo wrote:As for my character, I was thinking that he is not the oldest, so perhaps younger than PMiller and Herzog, but older than LMiller. He was a troublemaker as a kid, and perhaps the older characters had to bail him out of various things. One day, however, he went too far and got into big trouble that they couldn't get him out of it. Maybe he was jailed on some distant planet, and by the time the siblings got there to help, he had disappeared. This, of course, was when Pitax snapped him up and secreted him away, thinking that he was a criminal that wouldn't be missed. Perhaps the other siblings looked for him but had no luck finding him, possibly hearing rumors of Pitax's involvement (up to Calvin), but the trail went cold and they thought he was lost.

That all sounds good, and the other PCs hearing rumours of Pitax's involvement during your character's disappearance makes sense too.
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Re: TSP: Out of Character Discussion

Postby Argo » Fri May 06, 2016 10:28 pm

Okay, I'm going Oracle.

Funny, I was never particularly drawn to Oracles before, mostly because I don't care for the lore and flavor. Re-skinned them as hapless experiments injected with alien DNA is more my style though, and fits much better in a futuristic setting. I'm taking the Dark Tapestry mystery and Brain Drain revelation at first level. Black Blooded archetype. Like I said earlier, a creepy vibe. Think half Krycek-as-black-oil-alien and half (spoiler for Marvel's Agents of Shield to follow, don't click if that's an issue):
spoiler: show
Grant Ward as Hive.


Except, you know, not a villain.

Black Blooded will be fun here. In PF, it's necromantic in flavor, but it translates well to an alien vibe. Blood is actually black and can spray out to cause damage when he takes piercing or slashing damage. Cure spells harm and inflict spells heal, which can translate to his alien physiology reacting poorly to standard medical treatments. Darkvision, and a few resistances. The Brain Drain revelation isn't the most powerful, but it sure will make for some great (and creepy) RP.

He'll refer to himself as "we" and will use his former name like it's someone else. Sort of hilariously, I can see him being the face of the party. Sounds like no one else is going for that role, and I do enjoy it. So skills slanted to social set.

First level "spells" as follows: Cure Light Wounds, Inflict Light Wounds. A duality there, life and death in the palm of his hand.

0 level "spells" are more problematic. Some things would be ridiculous, like Light or Create Water, and some are alignment or mystically based. Would it be possible to pick and choose from not just the Cleric/Oracle list, but the Sorcerer/Wizard list as well?

Here are some possibilities:

- I could see "Acid Splash" (Wiz/Sorc 0) as him tossing a bit of black blood on someone, sort of a voluntary secretion.
- "Daze" (Wiz/Sorc 0) could be a mental power related to the Brain Drain revelation.
- "Touch of Fatigue" (Wiz/Sorc 0) could be related to the Cure/Inflict "powers".
- "Bleed"/"Stabilize" (Cleric/Oracle 0) also thematically related to the Cure/Inflict, life/death powers.
- "Detect Poison" (Cleric/Oracle 0) is maybe not perfectly thematically related, but you could make a case for it.

So all this will add up to a support character with strong out-of-combat facility and a few tricks up his sleeve, but he's going to need a gun, for sure.
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Re: TSP: Out of Character Discussion

Postby PMiller » Fri May 06, 2016 11:03 pm

Re: Power Creep, that would just make combat more deadly which is not a bad thing in a modern/future setting.

But I am in favor or keeping things as close to the published material as possible to be easier to remember or find later in 6 months to a year.

That said, I did not see anything wrong in Santiago that necessitating using the other rule set except the unrealistic thing of single shot weapons in the future. If you just treat them all as semi-auto and only allow auto-fire on heavier weapons (which are even listed) I don't see what the big deal is or the need to go PF Modern conversion at all.

Personally, I never liked d2O Modern rules on auto-fire anyway and don't think we actually need rules for automatic weapons if we are on a remote planet without military hardware. The Santiago feat of Scattershot would actually cover that instead if someone wanted to go that route.

Why not save time and effort by just sticking with the Santiago Guide instead? With deadly aim and rapid shot, ranged combat is going to be like automatic weapons fire anyway.
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Re: TSP: Out of Character Discussion

Postby Herzog » Sat May 07, 2016 4:18 am

Yea, on second thought. I kinda agree with PMiller on keeping as close to the rules as possible. PBP being what it is, it's going to be hard to remember things that have been customized.

RE: Argo. That oracle idea sounds cool!

On the relationships between the characters, I am fine being all related. I had a thought along those. Perhaps the gunslinger was a bit of a rebel and left the family early. Perhaps he was idolized by Argo's character, who attempted to follow him and got snatched up by the corporations. Or perhaps it is the other way around. The gunslinger left to go search for the lost brother, and went his own way about it.

Food for thought.
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Re: TSP: Out of Character Discussion

Postby Argo » Sat May 07, 2016 7:48 am

Oh, I really like that idea, Herzog. Your first concept, about your character rebelling and leaving the family early, and my character following in his footsteps (or trying to). Maybe my character never caught up to yours. Or maybe he did and they feuded over something dumb, and my character ran off in a fit of teenage spite, but then was caught by the corp and disappeared. Leaving you with guilt. And the others with blame for you for not taking care of your little bro.

One thing PMiller and I have noticed in games together is that our best pairs are when we play characters with something unresolved in their relationship. It adds inherent tension to the story but doesn't necessarily make us not be able to work together. I've seen far too many people try to create conflict by insulting other characters in the name of "adding tension" and "making the story more interesting". That's not interesting, it's just a drag. But creating people with a built-in reason to care about each other THEN adding unresolved issues that they need to work out does wonders.

So what can we take away from this scenario? It seems like some things are already implied.

- Herzog and PMiller older characters, perhaps in that order. Herzog being the oldest? Or perhaps they are twins.
- My character and LMiller's are younger, in that order.
- There is something to rebel against. I'm guessing if two kids felt the need to run away, the parents were somewhat strict about things. Or perhaps it was the opposite, and the parents were lackadaisical and/or abusive (though that last is pretty dark).

Some questions for us to think about and answer:

What was our socioeconomic status? Were we rich, poor, etc.?
Was the family religious in some way, and this is the source of the strictness?
Was the family/parents criminals at all, or were they law-abiding?
What about the parents now? Are they still alive?
What is the "family business"?

I haven't commented on the stuff about mechanics. I think you guys know that such things are not my strong suit. My vote is for whatever is easiest for us all to remember and implement. So sticking with the rules as written sounds good.
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Re: TSP: Out of Character Discussion

Postby Calvin » Sat May 07, 2016 11:49 am

Argo wrote:0 level "spells" are more problematic. Some things would be ridiculous, like Light or Create Water, and some are alignment or mystically based. Would it be possible to pick and choose from not just the Cleric/Oracle list, but the Sorcerer/Wizard list as well?

That should be fine. There aren't many 0-level "spells" to choose from, and none are all that powerful, so it makes sense to just pick whatever fits the character.

PMiller wrote:Re: Power Creep, that would just make combat more deadly which is not a bad thing in a modern/future setting.

The main problem would be that while PCs and most NPCs would become more deadly, the same wouldn't apply to creatures. Though this is a bit of a moot point if we intent on keeping things close to the original rules.

But I am in favor or keeping things as close to the published material as possible to be easier to remember or find later in 6 months to a year.

That said, I did not see anything wrong in Santiago that necessitating using the other rule set except the unrealistic thing of single shot weapons in the future. If you just treat them all as semi-auto and only allow auto-fire on heavier weapons (which are even listed) I don't see what the big deal is or the need to go PF Modern conversion at all.

Personally, I never liked d2O Modern rules on auto-fire anyway and don't think we actually need rules for automatic weapons if we are on a remote planet without military hardware. The Santiago feat of Scattershot would actually cover that instead if someone wanted to go that route.

Why not save time and effort by just sticking with the Santiago Guide instead? With deadly aim and rapid shot, ranged combat is going to be like automatic weapons fire anyway.

Ultimately, there's not much difference between a laser rifle based on PF Modern rules and one that is simply a reskinned longbow. Both would deal 1d8 damage and have a range increment of 100 ft., the main difference would be the ability to use autofire and the need for reloading. If we get rid of autofire, we can probably go with your earlier suggestion and have high-capacity weapons forego the need for reloading, which would make the two identical.

I'm not too attached to autofire, particularly if none of the PCs intend on using it. The main thing I want to borrow from from PF Modern is kick, adding weapons mechanically-similar to composite bows and making it worthwhile to invest points in Strength.

The main thing I want to do, aside from fix the aforementioned magazine capacity weirdness, is to add a bit more variety to the weapons, not completely overhaul the rules.
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