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Author Topic: Casting out of combat  (Read 232 times)

Kalajel

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Casting out of combat
« on: 28. April 2017, 00:34:20 »

I've been tinkering with rules to allow for auto-casting rules out of combat since "the players will succeed at their rolls eventually). While this is true, you run in 2 problems...

1) Some spells are obviously meant to be cast outside of combat (or at the very least, will make more sense to be used outside of combat) and are still very much beholden to the same spellcasting rules as other combat spells.

2) A single healer in a party will pretty much make the purchase of bandages and healing herbs unnecessary (not to mention the whole concept of catching your breath) as he can keep the party's HP full at all time.

And yet, I can understand the frustrations of players having to roll their spellchanging checks, then their spell, then their spellchanging checks again...

So as a compromise, I've came up with those out of combat spellcasting rules.


When outside of combat, and in relative calm (no monsters chasing the party or running away from a crumbling temple), the player can take his time to cast a spell or change spells and succeed it automatically.

The amount of time this takes equal to 30 - the check's CTN in minutes (minimum 5) for each such check made.
So for example, a Wizard with a Spellchanging check of 12 and a Detect Magic spell of 17 decides to switch from Lightning Bolt to identify a magic item found, and then back to Lightning Bolt for any future potential combat., it would take him (30-12) + (30-17) + (30-12) = 49 minutes to do so.

In case where the result has any bearing on the duration or effect of the spell, consider the player has rolled halfway from his CTN, rounded up (for example, a CTN of 5 would assume a result of 8 ). There could be the possibility of taking even more time to ensure a better result, but I haven't really made rules for that just yet...

Of course, if the player chooses, or cannot, take their time (or wish for a better result), they can always use the normal spellcasting and spellchanging rules.

To explain why spellcasting work differently out of combat can be easily done by stipulating that in combat, players are under duress and in a hurry to produce a magical effect right now (not to mention the stress of possibly dying in an encounter). Taking this into account, it would make total sense.
« Last Edit: 30. April 2017, 18:06:50 by Kalajel »
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Kalajel

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Re: Casting out of combat
« Reply #1 on: 28. April 2017, 14:55:32 »

I noticed I had already made rules for taking time on your checks outside of combat.

If you take 1 minutes to perform an action (taking 12 times longer than usual), you gain a bonus of +4 to your CTN.

If you take 10 minutes to perform an action (taking 120 times longer than usual), you gain a bonus of +8 to your CTN.

I wonder if I should not use this rule instead. Seems ludicrous to have two set of rules for taking your time on something...

vikleroy

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Re: Casting out of combat
« Reply #2 on: 30. April 2017, 15:27:42 »

The time you take is important if you are playing against the time. But for me, your rule takes too long. In a fight, changing a spell cost one action, so, you take about 6 seconds to do this. Having a 12 for changing spell is 60% of success. And a 17, 85% of success. So, for these 3 actions, you take minimally about 20s to do. 49 min for this is a bit too strong.
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Kalajel

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Re: Casting out of combat
« Reply #3 on: 30. April 2017, 18:05:30 »

Actually, a round is 5 seconds. Also, I did offer the metagame explanation that casting in combat is quicker because the players are in duress and need a magical effect right now, and the risk of failing that effect is worth the risk of not waiting several minutes to get it. Finally, without necessarily being pressed for time, it might limit the amount of time your players can explore a dungeon or advance the plot of an adventure during the day: there are only so many waking hours each day...

I simply wanted to offer my players an opportunity to cast out of combat without having to roll their spellchanging and spellcasting rolls until they succeeded (which tends to make players complain) while taking into account the fact that some spells are meant to be used out of combat and thus, need to be rolled for as per the rules, and also to avoid having the healer make bandages, healing herbs, and catching your breath obsolete... There aren't that many ways to solve those problems. You're always welcome to reduce the automatic casting time out of combat, of course, but keep in mind that reducing them too much will risk unbalancing the game.

Edit: I will admit that the reason I probably made rules this steep was most likely tainted by my experience with the RPG club I started where some players really badly built some of their characters, with one of the sorcerer having, at best, a 50% chance to perform any sort of magical actions...
My second set of rules, which I had originally done to help with checks outside of combat instead of just casting spells is probably a much better set of rules to use.
« Last Edit: 30. April 2017, 18:15:14 by Kalajel »
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Dextolen

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Re: Casting out of combat
« Reply #4 on: 05. May 2017, 12:56:53 »

Outside of combat, I allow healers to completely heal everyone they wish if the group has a few minutes to rest.   This allows me to really crank up the challenge level of encounters, too.

The ease of healing in DS is great, except for the effect it has on traps that are outside of combat. A trap that damages but doesn't kill the victim is essentially useless unless it does something other than wound.  A good DS trap should also do things like:

Separate the party (a wall drops down, a shoot opens up below the victims, sending them to a lower level of a dungeon)

Release monsters: A secret door is triggered and monsters come out.

Poison or gas with different effects: Penalties to combat, etc. that last for a few hours.

vikleroy

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Re: Casting out of combat
« Reply #5 on: 17. May 2017, 11:26:22 »

Outside of combat, I allow healers to completely heal everyone they wish if the group has a few minutes to rest.   This allows me to really crank up the challenge level of encounters, too.
Yep.

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The ease of healing in DS is great, except for the effect it has on traps that are outside of combat. A trap that damages but doesn't kill the victim is essentially useless unless it does something other than wound.
This answer to a question I asked for myself. What the needs of traps when the group has a healer. Many times, the dwarf says: "I open the door, ouch a fireball", then he healer heals... Not very funny.

Quote
Separate the party (a wall drops down, a shoot opens up below the victims, sending them to a lower level of a dungeon)

Release monsters: A secret door is triggered and monsters come out.

Poison or gas with different effects: Penalties to combat, etc. that last for a few hours.
Good ideas.
When the fighter will suffer many penalties. perhaps he won't go head on the traps :)
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Kalajel

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Re: Casting out of combat
« Reply #6 on: 17. May 2017, 15:15:03 »

Yes, I'm aware of that, and of course, you're more than free to run your games that way... Until one of your players makes a fuss of not allowing him to auto-succeed his Open spell because you allow the mage to auto heal the party after each fight... ;)