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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Ramsus on Tue Dec 04, 2012 1:05 am

To the last question, yes. Though as for the other bit, I'd been sorta wondering that too. Then again, +2 that's separate (and thus can stack) from training or cutie mark is pretty neat.
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  SilentBelle on Tue Dec 04, 2012 1:14 am

Ramsus wrote:Though, I don't recall the answer for how DoTs stack either. Personally, and I'm not sure this isn the official answer, is that I'd have it be that the same effect (say Ignite) doesn't stack but uses the worst but, the multiple different DoTs do, since they are all technically separate effects.

Actually now that you mention it... yeah it might work like that. We could get some really mean combos going with that too... (It kind of makes sense that if you are bleeding and burning that you get hurt more)

Yeah, now I'm not as certain as I was. This definitely needs some more clarification in the PHB.

Edit: Yeah reading through it again... yep it definitely would stack on different effects. I really jumped the gun on that one. Thanks for pointing that out Ramsus.
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Philadelphus on Tue Dec 04, 2012 1:39 am

Ramsus wrote:I'm pretty sure you can only take Utility talents once unless it says otherwise.
Ahh, that makes sense, seeing that Freaky Knowledge explicitly says you can take it multiple times, implying that it's the exception not the rule. Also it'd be rather broken if you could. Thanks!
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Whiteeyes on Tue Dec 04, 2012 1:39 am

Stairc -Dan Felder wrote:And dear Celestia, think of the unicorn that *has* to take ponykinesis even if their player doesn't want that utility talent! Won't somebody please think of the unicorns?!

Thank you. See its forward thinking like that which...you were being sarcastic huh? *sigh* You know, I consider ponykinisis the downside of playing a unicorn. It's a pretty useless ability if you think about it. Everypony else gets along fine manipulating the world with their hooves, and nopony is going to do something like leave the jail keys out in the open and unattended in sight of a unicorn. It only starts to become useful if you invest Utility Talents into it, meaning it's either useless or a Utility sink. So yeah, ponykinisis is basically a waste of race points on unicorns.

Anyway on to my question: ponykinisis doesn't seem to be listed in Genetic Engineering. Did I miss it, or is it really not there?
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Xel Unknown on Tue Dec 04, 2012 1:41 am

They're still debating if it should be one point or two... Most likely it'll be one point.
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Stairc -Dan Felder on Tue Dec 04, 2012 1:47 am

Whiteeyes wrote: You know, I consider ponykinisis the downside of playing a unicorn. It's a pretty useless ability if you think about it. Everypony else gets along fine manipulating the world with their hooves, and nopony is going to do something like leave the jail keys out in the open and unattended in sight of a unicorn.


Actually, the identical ability Magehand is highly useful a surprising amount of the time in D&D. Throwing levers across gaps, triggering traps at a distance, moving cursed objects without touching them, fishing things out of acid, moving mirrors so you can see to strange locations and teleport to them - it has a surprising amount of utility.

Either way though, we're tied by Faust's hands. Unicorns clearly have this ability and it needs to be represented in their racial traits (it'd be a weird thing to leave something that can impact gameplay mechanics just to flavor).

Whiteeyes wrote:It only starts to become useful if you invest Utility Talents into it, meaning it's either useless or a Utility sink. So yeah, ponykinisis is basically a waste of race points on unicorns.

You can make a similar argument for flight actually.

Whiteeyes wrote:Anyway on to my question: ponykinisis doesn't seem to be listed in Genetic Engineering. Did I miss it, or is it really not there?

It, like many things, can be taken as a utility talent.

However, Unicorns are indeed going to get a buff. Ponykinesis is very useful but it's definitely on the weak side for a utility talent. It'll probably be made into a 1 point racial trait and unicorns will get a buff or two. That said, I think you missed the rest of the message I left - as I highlighted Genetic Engineering as being something that you can use to tweak existing races and used unicorns as solely the counterexample to Tyger's point. The fact is that Tyger's argument was far too broad to just work for the one thing he was trying to apply it too, so I expanded it. I also considered using flight as something pegasai have to take. Whether some people want ponykinesis or not on their unicorns isn't the point, it's that you have to apply the argument equally to everything if you're going to make the argument at all. And that's why we have Genetic Engineering too. =)

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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Xel Unknown on Tue Dec 04, 2012 1:54 am

And I can't help but make my nagging reminder for the future update of 8 point system for all to enjoy.
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Stairc -Dan Felder on Tue Dec 04, 2012 1:55 am

Xel The Medic wrote:And I can't help but make my nagging reminder for the future update of 8 point system for all to enjoy.

Noted, and my own reminder that I'm still in finals week. Wink
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Stairc -Dan Felder on Tue Dec 04, 2012 1:57 am

SilentBelle wrote:Actually now that you mention it... yeah it might work like that. We could get some really mean combos going with that too... (It kind of makes sense that if you are bleeding and burning that you get hurt more)

Yeah, now I'm not as certain as I was. This definitely needs some more clarification in the PHB.

Edit: Yeah reading through it again... yep it definitely would stack on different effects. I really jumped the gun on that one. Thanks for pointing that out Ramsus.

Actually, no. It doesn't stack on different effects any more than vulnerability from multiple sources stacks or stun from multiple sources stacks. Like temporary hp, you just apply the highest value and move on with things. Otherwise things would quickly become broken.
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Xel Unknown on Tue Dec 04, 2012 1:58 am

I know, I know... Just finished up my own last final today. Just I'm on pins and needles over here to see what awesome upgrades all the races get! :3
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Ramsus on Tue Dec 04, 2012 2:01 am

Yeah, I didn't think the way I thought was the official version. Still, I like it and I'll probably run my own games that way (though if it becomes omg everything is dying argh, I'd switch it back).

As for Ponykenisis on Unicorns if you don't want it.... well you can always ask your GM to let you not have it and make a reason why you don't. Though I expect you'll at least have to give a good backstory reason why and not "cuz?"
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Xel Unknown on Tue Dec 04, 2012 2:03 am

For example, I've got a unicorn with a broken horn... That'd be a good way to justify it. Don't think he's done Ponykinisis without using It's Witchcraft though
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Stairc -Dan Felder on Tue Dec 04, 2012 2:03 am

Ramsus wrote:Yeah, I didn't think the way I thought was the official version. Still, I like it and I'll probably run my own games that way (though if it becomes omg everything is dying argh, I'd switch it back).

Just make sure you have a way to deal with a party putting even slight vulnerability on one of your guys, then stacking multiple DOTs. Vulnerability 3 plus three different hypothetical effects that all deal 1 ongoing damage creates a shocking 12 damage automatically.

As for Ponykenisis on Unicorns if you don't want it.... well you can always ask your GM to let you not have it and make a reason why you don't. Though I expect you'll at least have to give a good backstory reason why and not "cuz?"

Yep, and that's what the genetic engineering expansion is for - to make these tweaks easy and fair. Cool
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  SilentBelle on Tue Dec 04, 2012 10:06 am

Stairc -Dan Felder wrote:
SilentBelle wrote:Actually now that you mention it... yeah it might work like that. We could get some really mean combos going with that too... (It kind of makes sense that if you are bleeding and burning that you get hurt more)

Yeah, now I'm not as certain as I was. This definitely needs some more clarification in the PHB.

Edit: Yeah reading through it again... yep it definitely would stack on different effects. I really jumped the gun on that one. Thanks for pointing that out Ramsus.

Actually, no. It doesn't stack on different effects any more than vulnerability from multiple sources stacks or stun from multiple sources stacks. Like temporary hp, you just apply the highest value and move on with things. Otherwise things would quickly become broken.

Oh, thanks for the clarification. Maybe it should be stated specifically in the PHB that it doesn't stack, much like it does for vulnerability, it sure would save some confusion.
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Stairc -Dan Felder on Tue Dec 04, 2012 4:49 pm

SilentBelle wrote:
Oh, thanks for the clarification. Maybe it should be stated specifically in the PHB that it doesn't stack, much like it does for vulnerability, it sure would save some confusion.

Absolutely will do. Thanks. =)
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Xel Unknown on Tue Dec 04, 2012 5:12 pm

Is there any way to help convert a X/session talent to work, better in a play by post game? Cause the mystery of how to best work is totally something that should be asked...
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Stairc -Dan Felder on Tue Dec 04, 2012 5:16 pm

Xel The Medic wrote:Is there any way to help convert a X/session talent to work, better in a play by post game? Cause the mystery of how to best work is totally something that should be asked...

I recommend cutting it in half and maxing it that many times per day, making it per certain number of posts/pages of posts or counting a full real-life week as a single session (depending on the pace of your game - if it mirrors the pace of a game that would meet weekly this kind of limit would work well). I'd probably lean towards the tracking RL time, as it's pretty dang easy (if your game moves slowly, you might decide that a session is equivalent to two RL weeks or similar). Stuff like fracture the fourth wall is pretty harmless, but stuff like Twitchy Tail can so easily turn into this.

DM: "A month passes..."

Player: "Sweet! Time to play 30 questions!"

DM: "What?"

Player: "One for each day we just went by!"
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Ramsus on Tue Dec 04, 2012 6:47 pm

Also viable is just letting the GM determine where as "session" begins and ends. There aren't really any perfect solutions though.
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Stairc -Dan Felder on Tue Dec 04, 2012 6:48 pm

I'm pretty sure the question was for a guideline as to how the DM decides that. Wink
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Xel Unknown on Tue Dec 04, 2012 6:55 pm

Yeah, was mostly just fishing for good guidline suggestions. And personally really liking that "Session = One Real World Week" idea.
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Stairc -Dan Felder on Tue Dec 04, 2012 6:59 pm

Xel The Medic wrote:Yeah, was mostly just fishing for good guidline suggestions. And personally really liking that "Session = One Real World Week" idea.

Great to hear. Hope it works out for you!
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Zarhon on Tue Dec 04, 2012 8:00 pm

Stairc -Dan Felder wrote:Actually, the identical ability Magehand is highly useful a surprising amount of the time in D&D. Throwing levers across gaps, triggering traps at a distance, moving cursed objects without touching them, fishing things out of acid, moving mirrors so you can see to strange locations and teleport to them - it has a surprising amount of utility.

Either way though, we're tied by Faust's hands. Unicorns clearly have this ability and it needs to be represented in their racial traits (it'd be a weird thing to leave something that can impact gameplay mechanics just to flavor).

I have no problem with ponykinesis on unicorns, but I do have a problem with ponykinesis itself, as a talent.

The problem with ponykinesis can be summed up like this:
1) The weight limit isn't show-realistic, it's pathetically weak, limiting its uses in 90% of cases. The weakest level of flight has more freedom than this talent and is more likely to be actually used, regardles of its high penalty. If you can pick a 50lb object up with your hooves, why wouldn't you be able to pick it up with magic?
2) There isn't any option to roll, unless you take it's witchcraft. You either can, or can't use your ability. If you didn't invest in several utilities for ponykinesis, this ends up being very often. No other talent relies on its upgrade to put it in line with other, better talents.
3) Precise ponykinesis is utterly pointless and once again, not show realistic.
4) If the DM decides to allow rolling to bypass the weight limit (which usually requires "it's witchcraft, another talent) or to do something that would imply applying force, there aren't any references as to what to use, other than arcana. A character with low arcana is automatically screwed over.

Long story short: A unicorn is forced to invest into multiple utilities AND high arcana to make their racial talent somewhat useable(at least once per session). A pegasus can make full use of its weathercrafting abilities with zero utility points, and can invest in two different talents to make a good use of flight.

I am speaking from play-experience: I have a unicorn with ponykinesis, precise ponykinesis, and low arcana, a choice that fits a gemcutter (multiple tools, high precision). My character can't make almost any use of the talents, no matter how hard or often I try: Either the weight limit prevents its use comepletly, or I'm forced into rolling arcana (because MAGIC!) with a +6 bonus, which gives me a high percentage chance of failure, thus makes it often useless for assisting or when used in stress situations.

As for the genetics, unicorns, if you ask me, being a magical race, should have some kind of access to magecraft/it's witchcraft. If pegasi can craft weather via genetics, why would unicorns need to invest a talent point to affect the magical forces they were born with? They're already forced into going arcana for ponykinesis.

But here's a questions of my own, in regards to magic as a whole:

QUESTION: What would the closest equivalent, or alternative, to "Willpower" in the game, or a similar stat that would determine the mental focus and/or ability to resist magical and mental effects? Is it Arcana? Or Endurance?

There aren't any skills that can relate to this, other than arcana. This limits character building: You can't have a pony that's "strong-willed" without him being a powerful sorceror of some kind.


Last edited by Zarhon on Tue Dec 04, 2012 8:19 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Ramsus on Tue Dec 04, 2012 8:15 pm

First, irregardless is not a word. The word you mean is regardless.

Second, I completely agree that Ponykinesis is too weak in the average setting. Telekinesis is strong enough in LL because, again, the setting.

Third, It's Witchcraft/Magecraft is already the strongest Utility in the game and there's no reason non-wizardy unicorns would be any good at it (Rarity shows absolutely no signs of having it).

Fourth, I'd say "willpower" would be a Sense/Horse-Sense check.
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Whiteeyes on Tue Dec 04, 2012 8:36 pm

I don't know about the last one. Let's look at a scenario.

Player A: I maxed out my Horse-Sense so I could focus on Streetwise to play a petty, cowardly thief.

Player B: I maxed out my Intilect so that I could focus on Arcana and play a wise and powerful unicorn Mage.

Under your proposed system, Player A is more resistant to mind control than Player B.

We can't change it over to Intilect/Arcana either though, otherwise we gat this:

Player C: I maxed out my Strength to play a stalwart and true knight, defender of the people.
Player D: I maxed out my Intilect since I'm playing a historian. Oh, and I put some training into Arcana because unicorn.

Under that system, the incidentally skilled librarian is more resistant than the tried and true loyal knight.

I don't think this one can really be mechanical and needs to be more of a case by case basis with the GM.
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Re: Ask a Simple Question - Get a Simple Answer

Post  Zarhon on Tue Dec 04, 2012 8:43 pm

I'd also like to add

5) The very fact is has a defined "weight limit" forces the DM to apply a nonsense restriction to something that they can't measure (or more likely, aren't bothered to measure), provoking arguments, unfair situations, or stalling of the game, whilst ignoring whatever traits the characters may have.

"Want to pick up that chair and smash it against that minotaur's head? Sorry, it weighs 27 pounds. Yes, I know you can pick it up normally."

And have another question:

QUESTION: Is ponykinesis purely restricted to picking up and moving objects? Can you, for instance, use ponykinesis to magically slap a pony with the telekinetic force, or for instance, squish/stretch a rubber toy?
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