Training weapons

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Training weapons

Postby Zapp » Tue Jul 01, 2008 4:11 am

(previously discussed in the errata thread, broken out here for convenience)

The rules specify that certain weapons (such as the Bastard Sword) require a minimum rank in its specialty (Long Blades in this case) or you get one penalty die for every rank you're missing.

Your rank in the general ability (Fighting) does not matter (except of course, a high Fighting rank enables you to live with any penalty dice that much easier).

Additionally, there's a rule saying "If you meet the rank required by the weapon, you lose those bonus dice on your Fighting Test." I read "those" to mean "the bonus dice you obviously possess as you meet the requisite rank".

So, this is what I make of these rules taken together, using the Tower Shield (listed in the Training column to require Shields 2B) as an example.

Character A is listed as Fighting 3. When using a Tower Shield he rolls 3-2P.

Character B is listed as Fighting 3, Shields 1B. When using a Tower Shield he rolls 3+1B-1P. Do note that B doesn't meet the required rank, so he gets to keep his bonus die per normal rules.

Character C is listed as Fighting 3, Shields 2B. When using a Tower Shield he rolls 3.

Character D is listed as Fighting 3, Shields 3B. When using a Tower Shield he rolls 3. Do note that D loses all three of his specialty bonus dice, not just the two required to meet the training listing.


Now, the problem is that this doesn't make sense to me (specifically cases B and to a lesser extent D). Isn't there a logical loop that needs fixin' here?
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Re: Training weapons

Postby Patchface » Tue Jul 01, 2008 4:36 am

Zapp wrote:Character D is listed as Fighting 3, Shields 3B. When using a Tower Shield he rolls 3. Do note that D loses all three of his specialty bonus dice, not just the two required to meet the training listing.

I'd rule that Character D would get to roll 3+1B, reading the rules as "those bonus dice" referring to "rank required by the weapon", but everything else I agree with. (And, like you, I'm more or less guessing on what Character D would get to roll). :)

I'm not ready to pass final judgement on the Training rules just yet, but, written as they are right now, they are unclear at best.
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Re: Training weapons

Postby Rhybard » Tue Jul 01, 2008 6:08 am

I would say anyone who doesn't meet the Training requirement would lose all Bonus Dice, until the minimum is meet.

Zapp wrote:Character B is listed as Fighting 3, Shields 1B. When using a Tower Shield he rolls 3+1B-1P. Do note that B doesn't meet the required rank, so he gets to keep his bonus die per normal rules.

Character C is listed as Fighting 3, Shields 2B. When using a Tower Shield he rolls 3.


So Character B that the roll should be 3 - 1P since allowing the 1B would give an advantage over Character C who doesn't get any bonus dice.

I agree the training rules do need some more clarification than how they are presented in the Quickstart rules.

Rolling 4d6 dropping the lower two gives a slight advantage of being able to chose the higher dice for the roll. Granted the total will have a lower cap, but it does shift the odss.
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Re: Training weapons

Postby Patchface » Tue Jul 01, 2008 8:28 am

Rhybard wrote:I would say anyone who doesn't meet the Training requirement would lose all Bonus Dice, until the minimum is meet.

Possibly, but that doesn't follow from the rules as written, really.

Rhybard wrote:
Zapp wrote:Character B is listed as Fighting 3, Shields 1B. When using a Tower Shield he rolls 3+1B-1P. Do note that B doesn't meet the required rank, so he gets to keep his bonus die per normal rules.

Character C is listed as Fighting 3, Shields 2B. When using a Tower Shield he rolls 3.


So Character B that the roll should be 3 - 1P since allowing the 1B would give an advantage over Character C who doesn't get any bonus dice.

I don't think so. Rolling 3+1B-1P (the way Zapp said) should give Character B slightly worse odds than Character C, who rolls 3 dice, even with Character B's one bonus die.

Character B essentially gets to roll 4 dice, drop the two lowest (one bonus, one penalty); so only two dice count.

For Character C all three of his dice count.


Anyway, this whole discussion just shows that the training rules need clarification badly. :)
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Postby Zapp » Tue Jul 01, 2008 8:54 am

You're right insofar that:

Character A rolls 3-2P for an average of 3.5. Ok, that is appropriate suckage.

Character B rolls 3+1B-1P for an average of 8.45. Had there not been this queer loop in the rules, he would have rolled 3-1P for an average of 8.

Character C rolls 3 for an average of 10.5 (duh)

If Character D is allowed to keep his surplus specialty rank, he would roll 3+1B for an average of 11.95.

So, yes, rolling 3 > rolling 3+1B-1P.

However, I still think the progression should be simply 3-2P, 3-1P, 3 and 3+1B.
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Postby Zapp » Tue Jul 01, 2008 9:05 am

Here's a draft to represent this change. What do you think?

TRAINING
Some weapons are easier to wield than others. To reflect the weapon's complexity, some weapons require a minimum rank in its specialty to use properly. Your effective rank with such a weapon is reduced by this minimum requirement (and so are your bonus dice). If your effective rank reaches zero and you still must reduce it, add one penalty die per such reduction instead.
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Postby Rhybard » Tue Jul 01, 2008 10:44 am

Zapp wrote:Character B rolls 3+1B-1P for an average of 8.45. Had there not been this queer loop in the rules, he would have rolled 3-1P for an average of 8.

Doing quick math I came up with 9.3 but I could be way off. However, you are correct that there is still an advantage to rolling 3 vs. 3 + 1B - 1P.

I am happy to concede that. :)
Zapp wrote:However, I still think the progression should be simply 3-2P, 3-1P, 3 and 3+1B.

I agree, this would make the most sense to me as well. No bonus dice until the minimum training cost is met.
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Postby Aran MacFiona » Tue Jul 01, 2008 3:35 pm

English isn't my native language so I might well have misunderstood it. But as I understand that rule :
A got a penalty of two dice so rolls only 1 and keep it. No choice of keeping the best 1 out of 3.
B got 1 bonus die and 2 penalty die so rolls 2 and keep it. No choice to keep the best 2 out of 3.
C got 2 bonus and 2 penalty die so rolls 3 and keep it.
D got 3 bonus die and 0 penalty die so roll 6 and keep the best 3 dice.

Like this it make perfect sense for me. The penalty is due to lack of familiarity with the weapon. But if a character meet the requirement in speciality for that particular weapon he's entitled to keep his full bonus because it means he's familiar with that weapon.
That makes creating a fighter character very interesting. You must choose between giving him a high general fighting ability to deal with the penalty, or having him get speciality in few selected weapons to get the bonus.
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Postby Patchface » Tue Jul 01, 2008 4:09 pm

Your interpretation of the Training rules seems to be in conflict with the quick-start, I'm afraid. :)

Aran MacFiona wrote:A got a penalty of two dice so rolls only 1 and keep it. No choice of keeping the best 1 out of 3.

Penalty dice cancel test dice, starting with the lowest die rolled. They are applied after you roll (p. 7). So A rolls 3 dice and gets to keep his best die.

Aran MacFiona wrote:B got 1 bonus die and 2 penalty die so rolls 2 and keep it. No choice to keep the best 2 out of 3.
C got 2 bonus and 2 penalty die so rolls 3 and keep it.

P. 11 clearly states that you get one penalty die for each specialty rank you lack. So B would only get one penalty die, not 2.
Likewise, C wouldn't get any penalty dice; he does meet the rank required, after all (see p. 11 as well).

Aran MacFiona wrote:D got 3 bonus die and 0 penalty die so roll 6 and keep the best 3 dice.

D getting to keep all his bonus dice would be another possibility to interpret the rules as written, I suppose. It wouldn't make a whole lot of sense to me, but that doesn't have to mean anything... :)
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Postby RJS » Wed Jul 02, 2008 8:24 pm

A: 3 - 2P
B: 3 +1B -1P
C: 3
D: 3 +1B

This is in fact the proper progression.

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Postby Joe » Thu Jul 03, 2008 11:40 pm

RJS wrote:A: 3 - 2P
B: 3 +1B -1P
C: 3
D: 3 +1B

This is in fact the proper progression.

Rob Schwalb

Maybe it is just the dumb me, but how does the +1B get there with the B character?
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Postby Zapp » Fri Jul 04, 2008 2:30 am

No, you're not alone. I too would like to know the rationale why that is "proper" when the intuitive progression is not?

(I can guess it has something to do with the statistics of the dice pool, but I have no idea as to a real answer)

:)
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Postby Patchface » Fri Jul 04, 2008 8:10 am

Joe wrote:
RJS wrote:A: 3 - 2P
B: 3 +1B -1P
C: 3
D: 3 +1B

This is in fact the proper progression.

Rob Schwalb

Maybe it is just the dumb me, but how does the +1B get there with the B character?

I'm assuming that, unlike Zapp, you're not asking for the reason behind the rule, but simply how you get to that progression, correct?

Well, it's just the direct result of the Training rule: Character B has a Shield specialty bonus of 1B; he therefore lacks one of the ranks required by the tower shield; so he takes one penalty die (-1P). At the same time, the rule says nothing about losing any bonus dice; so B retains his one bonus die (+1B). Et voilà, B rolls 3+1B-1P. :)


Zapp wrote:I too would like to know the rationale why that is "proper" when the intuitive progression is not?


It follows from an abstract rule that appears to be tailor-made for other weapons.

Part of the confusion about the Tower Shield progression might well be that, from a training rules-perspective, the Tower Shield is something like a "freak weapon", requiring 2 bonus dice to wield it properly.

With a Bastard Sword (and likewise with all other weapons that require Training except for the Tower Shield), the progression doesn't look that "un-intuitive"; in fact, it's pretty straightforward:

A: 3-1P
B: 3
C: 3+1B
D: 3+2B
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Postby Zapp » Fri Jul 04, 2008 2:29 pm

Not sure how to respond, here... your reply seems to suggest the rule must be written this way for the 1B training weapons to yield the (very reasonable) progression you present.

But it's not.

Getting to
A: 3-1P
B: 3
C: 3+1B
D: 3+2B
and (at the same time)
A: 3-2P
B: 3-1P
C: 3
D: 3+1B
...for the 1B and 2B training weapons respectively isn't the hard part.

Instead, the hard part (for me) is understanding why this isn't proper and why the other progression is "more proper"?
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Postby Patchface » Fri Jul 04, 2008 4:35 pm

Zapp wrote:Instead, the hard part (for me) is understanding why this isn't proper and why the other progression is "more proper"?

I'd assume Rob Schwalb wasn't suggesting that the progression he presented is more proper in general than the one you prefer, or than any other progression, for that matter. Instead, he probably said that it's "the proper way" to do it because that's the way it should be done with the quick-start rules as they are currently written. Of course, that's only my very own reading of his statement... :)

Zapp wrote:your reply seems to suggest the rule must be written this way for the 1B training weapons to yield the (very reasonable) progression you present.

No. I merely suggested that the rules were probably written to fit the 1B training weapons, not that it has to be that way. I was trying to find an explanation for why it is the way it is since you asked for the rationale behind it; I wasn't trying to defend the rule.
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Postby Zapp » Sat Jul 05, 2008 1:16 am

Thanks, patchface, your rationale certainly does make sense.

Anyway, now we know Green Ronin is aware of the matter!

Time will tell (i.e we'll find out in the printed rulebook soon enough) if they 1) share our concerns the rule as written gives an unintuitive progression and changes it 2) shares it but deems it insignificant and keeps it 3) doesn't share our concerns and thus keeps it... :)
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