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> character creation costs?
Shinobi Killfist
post Aug 5 2005, 06:26 PM
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I guess my issue it this, they claim high starting attributes and skills will be rare. Now is that because of a shortage on points so that just getting an average amount in your attributes burns most your points leaving little for going up to a 6 or because higher stats and skills get dramatically higher cost.

For example in the d20 point buy system you start with straight 8s and an increase of 1 costs 1 point up to 14, to get to 15 it costs 2 points 16 2 more points17 now 3 points, 17 3 more and 18 3 more. This is fine and dandy but every two points above 10 gives you a +1 to whatever that attribute modifies, usually skills and spell dcs and the like. On a d20 roll thats basically a 5% swing for every 2 points. A 14 dex is no better than a 12 dex than a 12 is better than a 10 or a 16 is better than a 14.(outside other mods like armor caps) So up to the 14 point there attribute cost system makes sense.

Past 14 it only makes sense in a world building law of averages high stat should be rare sense. Not so much in the game balance I'm getting more than before out of it sense.(though i've seen people argue it for specific stats like str that "double there benefits since they increase the to hit and damage in the same action)

Now in SR4 I understand the TN is fixed at 5, and your att+skill gives you a pool. In game balance terms the only way a dramatically higher cost would make sense would be if for some reason I cant fathom, due to incomplete info or bad math skills, a 7 dice pool is some how percentage wise better than a 6 dice pool than a 6 dice pool is better than a 5 dice pool.

If a 7 dice pool is the same % better than a 6 die pool that a 6 die pool is better than a 5 dice pool a increasing cost system makes little sense.

I hope that made sense i couldnt come up with a good way to describe what i was thinking.
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Modesitt
post Aug 5 2005, 06:41 PM
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What people reported from Origins is that char creation is on a point system, but it's about 400 points for an average char, 300 for a lower-powered char and 500 for a high-powered char. Funny how BeCKs uses almost those EXACT SAME NUMBERS.

That's why high attributes and skills will be rare. They're probably switching to BeCKs, which since it's karma based means most people aren't particularily inclined to take all of their skills at 6.
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wagnern
post Aug 5 2005, 06:44 PM
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Roughly, you should get 1/3 success for each die you throw. So without diging out the stistics handbook, it would seem that a 5-6 die jump would be comparable to a 6-7 die jump. Each increment increases your number of success by 1/3. After all, it sounds like # of successes will be the name of the game.

of corse, if someone does the math-foo I may be wrong, but that is my quick analisis.

Who knows, each stat may have a different cost? Heck that could be a cool way to do races. Instead of giving race X +Y to strenght, just make strenght cheaper for them. Or the Attribute/cost curve could be different . . .
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Nikoli
post Aug 5 2005, 07:27 PM
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christ, I hate BeCKS.
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Edge2054
post Aug 5 2005, 08:03 PM
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I love BeCKS, other then how time consuming it is without NSRCG and I'm glad it looks like SR 4 will be getting away from the 1-1 we've seen all through SR. It just makes Min/Maxing far to easy in character generation.

On the other hand, I hope the number krunching is minimized somehow. I don't want players, especially new players, to have to invest as much time as they would have to if they did BeCKS by hand.
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Nikoli
post Aug 5 2005, 08:07 PM
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Any system that requires a program to understand is a bad idea.
i love NSRCG but I still won't use BeCKS.
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wagnern
post Aug 5 2005, 08:17 PM
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Becks is just building the charictor with Karma, that is not hard to understand. Now it is inconvient to use, but that is a different creature. (Kinda like Champions, you can understand the system, but making a charictor w/o Hero maker is a pain in the ass.)
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Synner
post Aug 5 2005, 08:25 PM
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SR4 chargen point system does bear some similarities to BECKS, but probably less than it bears to SR3's Point-based chargen. Personally I found it faster to use than either though. Take that as you will.
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Shinobi Killfist
post Aug 5 2005, 09:15 PM
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QUOTE (Edge2054)
I love BeCKS, other then how time consuming it is without NSRCG and I'm glad it looks like SR 4 will be getting away from the 1-1 we've seen all through SR. It just makes Min/Maxing far to easy in character generation.


Yeah but if every die in the pool just just gives you a 1/3 chance of success roughly at least, then it should be a 1-1. When mechanical penalties come into character creation that dont actually have bearing on the power all it does is reroute min-maxing into another character concept. And if you have a problem with characters starting with a 6 skill for whatever reason, talking to them is a better method than hard wiring the character creaiton so mediocratiy is everyones campaign style.

Someone mentioned champions and for my point thats a good example. every 5 points gets you 1d6 in energy blast. Having a rule built into the game that said its 10 points per 1d6 after 30 active points are put into energy blast because we dont want people starting with powerful attacks is a bad plan. Leave it at 1d6 per 5 points, and let the GM say there is an active point limit or guidleine or whatever of 30 points.

So I hope the costs are based not on fan pro determining our campaign style but on what they should be, the actual game balance value of the skill or attribute.
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Catsnightmare
post Aug 5 2005, 09:26 PM
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I've said it before, and I'll say it again.
Streamlining my ass!
I had enough complaints about the math getting two new players to build characters using the point system in SR3. Now SR4 is essentially using the karma buy system for character creation?! WTF?!?
I can almost assure you that from what I've seen of youth/kids today, the younger target audience Fan Pro is shooting for isn't gonna want to bother with that kind of math heavy character creation. They're already losing potentional new customers and the book isn't even out yet.

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Edge2054
post Aug 5 2005, 09:52 PM
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QUOTE (Synner)
SR4 chargen point system does bear some similarities to BECKS, but only about as many as it bears to SR3's Point-based chargen. Personally I found it faster to use than either though. Take that as you will.

This is good to hear.

As far as my comments on BeCKS. Understanding it without NSRCG isn't the problem, it's the amount of math involved and the time it takes to do it without a program that I was commenting on.

The 1-1 system in SR creates min/maxing because it is cheaper in the long run to start every attribute that you ever intend to max out maxed and to start out every skill you intend to raise to six or higher at six. Take for example Troll A and Troll B, Troll A maxes body and str at gen and leaves his int at 1. Troll B puts body at 10 and str at 9 but starts off with int at 3. Troll B needs 32 Karma to put his bod and str where Troll A's are but Troll A only needs 10 karma to put his int where Troll B's is even though both started with the same points to distribute during character generation.

I'm not saying people won't continue to min/max in other ways with a new system, I'm just saying the possibilities for min/maxing in the 1-1 system are blatant and unbalanced.

Champions isn't a good example IIRC because the abilities don't cost anymore the higher they get after the game starts. If it costs 5 to buy a dice of Energy Blast at gen it's going to still cost 5 after rather it's your 10th die or your 50th. Shadowrun doesn't work that way, 1-1 would work if it stayed 1-1 throughout, but it doesn't.
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Synner
post Aug 5 2005, 10:10 PM
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QUOTE (Catsnightmare)
I've said it before, and I'll say it again.
Streamlining my ass!
I had enough complaints about the math getting two new players to build characters using the point system in SR3. Now SR4 is essentially using the karma buy system for character creation?! WTF?!?

Where are you getting any of that? Care to provide a quote or reference? I know I just said that in my experience its simpler and faster to use than either BECKs or the SR3 point based system so where are you getting the rest of this?
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Eldritch
post Aug 5 2005, 10:24 PM
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As an observation the new char gen system does seem a little more complex - even not knowing the system yet. Sr3 you spent around 120 points; attributes 2 for one, skills one ofr one, and the magic/race/resources all had their little costs.

SR4 has - according to info given so far - 300 point for a basic level char, up to 500 points for an advanced char. We know attributes average out at 3, as do skills. and that Buying skills attributes over 3 gets really expensive.

This - to me - indicates a much more complex char gen system. More math.

More points = more things to buy - and/or different formulas to calculate costs.

And in my book, More complex does not equate to streamlining.
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Adam
post Aug 5 2005, 11:03 PM
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Of course, having more numbers to distribute can be made easier by keeping the numbers round.
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Shinobi Killfist
post Aug 5 2005, 11:18 PM
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QUOTE (Edge2054)
[QUOTE=Synner]
The 1-1 system in SR creates min/maxing because it is cheaper in the long run to start every attribute that you ever intend to max out maxed and to start out every skill you intend to raise to six or higher at six. Take for example Troll A and Troll B, Troll A maxes body and str at gen and leaves his int at 1. Troll B puts body at 10 and str at 9 but starts off with int at 3. Troll B needs 32 Karma to put his bod and str where Troll A's are but Troll A only needs 10 karma to put his int where Troll B's is even though both started with the same points to distribute during character generation.


I see what your saying here, but to me that's a flaw not with the creation system but with the growth system. Maybe more so or less so under SR3 dice mechanics. My math skills dont come close to being able to assess probability in its variable TN system. If it costs 5 points to get a stat from 1 to 2 and 5 points from 2 to 3 then 10 from 3 to 4 then the creation system in 4 is broken.(numbers completely fabricated) If the benefits you gain from a skill or attribute increase in a straight line then the costs shouldn't increase the cost should be consistent whether in character creation or in growth after creation.
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Taki
post Aug 6 2005, 12:00 AM
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QUOTE (Shinobi Killfist)
If the benefits you gain from a skill or attribute increase in a straight line then the costs shouldn't increase the cost should be consistent whether in character creation or in growth after creation.

I even pray for a growth system consistent with the character creation on any point (in all games).
I really don't see any reason why some thing could be less expensive at creation than after (and it doesn't mean that you can choose from all the creation list: "I become an elf for 10 karma")
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Lindt
post Aug 6 2005, 12:23 AM
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Woh.... 300 points? While I normally abhore such profainty, this calls for it. I dont FUCKING believe it. That is stupid as hell. While the karma system makes for (IMO) the best balanced charcters, its almost time prohibitive use without McMackies gift. Charcter generation for SR has always been fairly complex, but adding a level like this is just assinine...
If this IS the case, I will have spent months saying "Wait and see, then Ill decide." This will change that to "Nope, it blows goats."
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Modesitt
post Aug 6 2005, 12:27 AM
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...While my first instinct was that it was BeCKs, there's no reason to believe that it MUST be so.

Seriously, just think a little bit instead of instinctively lashing out at any and all 4th edition changes. Maybe they just increased the numbers to allow more fine-tuning of numbers and prices, similar to the difference between using a d20 and a d6. Maybe every single number you'd buy things in is 5 or 10, making the math fairly quick and easy.
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Ellery
post Aug 6 2005, 01:21 AM
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Don't be too worried about a number of 300. It just means that everything is on the same point scale but some things are expensive and some are cheap. Your smallest unit is 1 point, which might correspond to one spell point in SR3 (if spell points even make sense any more, which they may well not--but something could be that cheap). Your big-ticket items (race, for instance) might be worth 50 points. If everything's nicely rounded to multiples of 5 and 10 (when over 1 or 2), the math shouldn't be too hard for anyone who has played SR3. Of course, if absolutely everything is rounded to a multiple of 5, it should be 60 points with all costs divided by five.

QUOTE
If the benefits you gain from a skill or attribute increase in a straight line then the costs shouldn't increase the cost should be consistent whether in character creation or in growth after creation.
No, no, this is a terrible design decision for anything but a Dragonball Z-feel of game. In most realistic scenarios there is a law of diminishing returns, meaning that each fractional advantage you get requires more work than the last. Without that, you have scenarios where one person who spends their whole life practicing martial arts can defeat hundreds of opponents who are of similar size and strength, but have only had a few informal brawls. It gives a "superhero" feel, where the great are untouchable by the good, and the good are untouchable by the mediocre. If you want a superhero game, fine, but that's not how Shadowrun is typically portrayed (once one discounts immortal elves and dragons).

The only real way to avoid the problem is to introduce a cap--and then you get bunching up of people at the cap with no distinction between the great and the fantastic. This is frustrating, as we celebrate the amazing accomplishments of the fantastic over the great all the time (Tiger Woods, Lance Armstrong, Michael Jordan, and so on, just to pick examples from sports), and it's nice to be able to capture that feeling with a character.

I expect SR4 to have lots of linear trends because it appears simple and streamlined (and it's very easy to explain), but I expect also to see lots of caps that will frustrate long-term development and places where the need for a cap was forgotten and where imbalance will arise.
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Ol' Scratch
post Aug 6 2005, 03:21 AM
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I fail to see how figuring out how many points you've spent using 300 on a variable scale (1 for 1, 10 for 2, 25 for 3, etc... or whatever) is easier or more streamlined than the current Point Buy system, where all you have to do is count how many attribute points you spent and double it, then add in how many skill points you spent and be through with it (save for Resources, Magic, and Race which are all just a single number to deal with).

The latter can be done without having to do any math more difficult than counting on your fingers. The former would almost assuredly require jotting down some numbers or using a calculator unless you really have a knack for math and bookkeeping (which, at most, is only required for dealing with the actual Resources you gain under the current systems, which isn't really part of the Point-Buy system itself).

Saying the former is going to be faster and easier in general, without any other explanation for how those points are used, is just not possible. You may be more familiar and comfortable with it now, but there's just no way it's going to be easier.
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Bull
post Aug 6 2005, 04:49 AM
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Christ. you people seriously overthink and overanalyze everything.

It bears a striking resemblence to the SR3 point buy system. A few things have been tweaked, a few things added, and the point cost for damn near everything has been changed. It's still mostly a linear model, and while my experience doesn't quite jive with Synner's and I wouldn't say it's faster, I also say it isn't any slower either. At least not any slower than the first few times I made SR3 characters. I have most of those memorized now, so barring making a Decker, Rigger, or heavy and wierdly outfitted cyber-dude, I can whipe characters together in my sleep.

ive me a year with SR4, and I'll be in the same place. Mostly because I don;t make characters very often.

Bull
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SR4WorldOrder
post Aug 6 2005, 05:27 AM
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sorry but i don't like the BECKS system either. if there is alot of math envolved i hope they give a calculator along with the book. it sounds like it'll take longer to make a character than it will to locate a mr johnson by oneself in the icey regions of siberia.
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SR4WorldOrder
post Aug 6 2005, 05:30 AM
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on some things i'd say "if it wasn't broke don't fix it" which it looks like FP did
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Bull
post Aug 6 2005, 05:47 AM
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QUOTE (SR4WorldOrder)
sorry but i don't like the BECKS system either. if there is alot of math envolved i hope they give a calculator along with the book. it sounds like it'll take longer to make a character than it will to locate a mr johnson by oneself in the icey regions of siberia.

on some things i'd say "if it wasn't broke don't fix it" which it looks like FP did

Umm, did you read either of SYnner's or my own posts?

It's not Becks. Period. It bears almost no resemblence to Becks, except maybe in how many points you start with. It does, hoever, bear a striking resemblence to the old point buy system.

It's no more complicated or time consuming than SR3.

Bull
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Ol' Scratch
post Aug 6 2005, 04:32 PM
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Very well then. But if the method of buying attributes and skills varies from anything but directly linear numbers (10 for Skill 1, 20 for Skill 2, 30 for Skill 3) vs. some scale (10 for Skill 1, 25 for Skill 2, 50 for Skill 3), you'll still be wrong. It will be more complicated and time consuming than the current system. And considering that's what people have been saying about the new system for a while now, unless someone says directly the opposite, there's no real way to limit high-scoring attributes and skills without them being disproportionally more expensive than lower ones, and Disportionally More Expensive = More Complicated.

This has jack-all to do with that atrocious BeCKS system.

I, personally, like more complicated systems like that (again, not referring to BeCKS), but saying that it's no more complicated or time consuming than a point-for-point system is just flat-out wrong.
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