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New Source Material

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Speaking of Essentials, Amazon just e-mailed me that my copies of Heroes of the Fallen Lands and Rules Compendium just shipped and should arrive by Wednesday. Woohoo!
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Salazar Miller - Human Sorcerer 24 - Scales of War
Azad Halim al'Zahir - Tiefling Battlemind|Paladin 7 - Points of Light
Khavak'aashta - Half-Orc Thief 5 - Eberron
Dwimmerlaik - Revenant Hexblade 2 - Dark Campaign
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Registered: Oct 2008
Posts: 7786
Gary wrote
Speaking of Essentials, Amazon just e-mailed me that my copies of Heroes of the Fallen Lands and Rules Compendium just shipped and should arrive by Wednesday. Woohoo!


I received my copies today. I'll take a look at them after dinner and post some interesting tidbits. I'm surprised the the books are small sized, kind of like large paper back novels if that makes sense.
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Ravenblade - Dwarf Two-Weapon Ranger, Hammer of Moradin (Scales of War)
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I got my copies today as well. I'd read about the new format online so no surprise here.

Two feats I hadn't heard about that are awesome are Swift Recovery (requires Endurance training, get +3/4/5 HP extra HP each tier when using a surge) and Discipline of Stone (requires Con 13, get 5/7/10 temp HP when spending a surge). Really nice boosts to healing.
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Salazar Miller - Human Sorcerer 24 - Scales of War
Azad Halim al'Zahir - Tiefling Battlemind|Paladin 7 - Points of Light
Khavak'aashta - Half-Orc Thief 5 - Eberron
Dwimmerlaik - Revenant Hexblade 2 - Dark Campaign
Moderator
Registered: Oct 2008
Posts: 7786
Those are cool feats.

I had a skim through both books. I noticed in the rules that group skill checks don't depend on the weakest link anymore. Apparently if at least half the party succeeds (e.g. stealth to sneak up and surprise an enemy), then the whole party succeeds.

The most interesting parts were the new fighter, cleric, rogue, wizard builds. The cleric builds are especially reliable because almost all of their new powers have "Effect" riders which trigger on a hit or miss. Fighters have the new minor action at-will stanches that are great. Rogues seem to have many more "get in-get out" and other movement options with the new at-will "tricks". Wizards have a bunch of new powers (at-will and encounter) that any build can use, but the mage schools (evocation, illusion, enchantment) add nice bonuses and flair.

Overall, I think I'm most impressed with the new cleric powers and the fighter stances. Until we can see it all together with the previous material on charbuilder, it will be hard to know how these new options will compare and whether any of our fighters, rogues, wizards, clerics might want to remodel. Aside from these classes it looks like there will be new druid, ranger, paladin, and warlock options in the next book. No mention of other classes coming up.
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Ravenblade - Dwarf Two-Weapon Ranger, Hammer of Moradin (Scales of War)
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Registered: Oct 2008
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Looks like many more of the races will be getting the "get one +2 bonus to an attribute and a choice from two other attributes" revision.

http://www.wizards.com/DND/Article.aspx?x=dnd/4news/20101105
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Ravenblade - Dwarf Two-Weapon Ranger, Hammer of Moradin (Scales of War)
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Those are the races in the next Essentials players book; due out in a couple weeks.

While being able to switch her Int bonus for Con bonus is good for Azad, I'm annoyed Tieflings weren't given Int / Con as a choice.
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Salazar Miller - Human Sorcerer 24 - Scales of War
Azad Halim al'Zahir - Tiefling Battlemind|Paladin 7 - Points of Light
Khavak'aashta - Half-Orc Thief 5 - Eberron
Dwimmerlaik - Revenant Hexblade 2 - Dark Campaign
Moderator
Registered: Oct 2008
Posts: 7786
Can't have it all. Or can we?

I find that the racial attribute boni are limiting to character concepts, since all of us at least partially tend towards character optimization. When we pick non-ideal races for certain classes, we always wonder if we should.

It would be much better for character creation to be more open, such that you could choose ANY two attributes for your +2 boni with ANY race that you choose to play. Why shouldn't we be able to play a highly intelligent dwarf wizard or a stalwart gnome fighter, who aren't bad at what they do?

There's always the charbuilder option of houseruled character creation for this.
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Ravenblade - Dwarf Two-Weapon Ranger, Hammer of Moradin (Scales of War)
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Registered: Jun 2009
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I don't like the new CB. I am having a tough time importing previously created characters, and I can't find a way to houserule our additional feats. Anyone else having issues?
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Dungeon Master - The Dark Campaign
Sir Muurak - Mul Cavalier 14, Scales of War
Demuriath - Revenant Assassin 5, Points of Light
Kurvilis - Gnome Mage 4, Eberron
Moderator
Registered: Oct 2008
Posts: 7786
Jonathan Berg wrote
I don't like the new CB. I am having a tough time importing previously created characters, and I can't find a way to houserule our additional feats. Anyone else having issues?


I haven't tried it yet. When you run the update, does the old version get replaced by the new?
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Ravenblade - Dwarf Two-Weapon Ranger, Hammer of Moradin (Scales of War)
Moderator
Registered: Jun 2009
Posts: 3164
There's no update. The new version is a web application from the dnd site, not a downloadable thing.
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Dungeon Master - The Dark Campaign
Sir Muurak - Mul Cavalier 14, Scales of War
Demuriath - Revenant Assassin 5, Points of Light
Kurvilis - Gnome Mage 4, Eberron
Moderator
Registered: Jun 2008
Posts: 5084
Location: Los Angeles, CA
I haven't tried the new CB yet. My sub ran out a couple weeks ago, and I had planned to resub when the next update was scheduled. I probably won't re-sub until the weekend, I don't think I'll have time to play with it during the week.
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Salazar Miller - Human Sorcerer 24 - Scales of War
Azad Halim al'Zahir - Tiefling Battlemind|Paladin 7 - Points of Light
Khavak'aashta - Half-Orc Thief 5 - Eberron
Dwimmerlaik - Revenant Hexblade 2 - Dark Campaign
Moderator
Registered: Oct 2008
Posts: 7786
I tried out the new online CB last night.

Cons
- It couldn't import most of my characters without crashing.
- It's not coding damage for one of Ravenblade's attacks correctly.
- No idea how to houserule feats. The only houseruling I can see is for attributes.
- It doesn't appear to let you upload your own portrait images, so you have to use the CB selection.
- You can't customize the character sheets.
- You need MS Silverlight installed for it to work, so no go at work.
- You can't use arrow keys to move through item lists.
- Items lists only display items between your level and your level plus 5. So if you're level 10 and want a level 1 item, you have to change the range each time.

Pros
- It's visually pleasing.
- The character sheets combined the augment powers into one power card and not three for simplicity.
- Character sheets look nice in general.

Overall
Appearance: 8/10
User-Friendliness: 7/10
Flexibility: 2/10
Improvement over previous version: 1/10

Final Score: 4.5/10 (and only so high because it looks nice)
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Ravenblade - Dwarf Two-Weapon Ranger, Hammer of Moradin (Scales of War)
« Last edit by Viktor on Wed Nov 17, 2010 1:31 pm. »
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It's pretty unpopular on EN World, too. Lots of negative threads over there right now.
_______________
Salazar Miller - Human Sorcerer 24 - Scales of War
Azad Halim al'Zahir - Tiefling Battlemind|Paladin 7 - Points of Light
Khavak'aashta - Half-Orc Thief 5 - Eberron
Dwimmerlaik - Revenant Hexblade 2 - Dark Campaign
Moderator
Registered: Jun 2009
Posts: 3164
I think you can't import any character with houseruled feats. This does lead us to the question, though, of what to do regarding our campaigns with houseruled stuff given that the old CB will no longer update or be supported. Thoughts?
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Dungeon Master - The Dark Campaign
Sir Muurak - Mul Cavalier 14, Scales of War
Demuriath - Revenant Assassin 5, Points of Light
Kurvilis - Gnome Mage 4, Eberron
Moderator
Registered: Jun 2008
Posts: 5084
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Hope that WotC implements houseruled feats before we level up?

The really crap thing about it is the new awesome expertise feats in the Essentials books aren't in the old CB. So using those on existing characters, even in games without the free expertise feat like Scales of War, is problematic without using the new CB.
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Salazar Miller - Human Sorcerer 24 - Scales of War
Azad Halim al'Zahir - Tiefling Battlemind|Paladin 7 - Points of Light
Khavak'aashta - Half-Orc Thief 5 - Eberron
Dwimmerlaik - Revenant Hexblade 2 - Dark Campaign
Moderator
Registered: Oct 2008
Posts: 7786
Gary wrote
Hope that WotC implements houseruled feats before we level up?

The really crap thing about it is the new awesome expertise feats in the Essentials books aren't in the old CB. So using those on existing characters, even in games without the free expertise feat like Scales of War, is problematic without using the new CB.


Yeah, I wish they hadn't switched to the new CB. Regarding new expertise feats that don't exist in the offline CB, we can just pick one that's in there (like versatile expertise or whatever) for the CB and then include the real one with detailed info in the stat block. The same can be done for new powers that won't be in the offline CB, similar to how I did it for Geron's statblock before psionic power update came.
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Ravenblade - Dwarf Two-Weapon Ranger, Hammer of Moradin (Scales of War)
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Registered: Jun 2008
Posts: 5084
Location: Los Angeles, CA
The new CB seems, from what I'm reading, to really be more like a beta test at this point, between bugs, crashes, and missing features.
_______________
Salazar Miller - Human Sorcerer 24 - Scales of War
Azad Halim al'Zahir - Tiefling Battlemind|Paladin 7 - Points of Light
Khavak'aashta - Half-Orc Thief 5 - Eberron
Dwimmerlaik - Revenant Hexblade 2 - Dark Campaign
Moderator
Registered: Oct 2008
Posts: 7786
And while we're on the topic of expertise feats. I kind of wish we either just give everyone an expertise feat and a melee training feat or we don't give it to anyone. For some character builds, these feats are almost irresistible if not mandatory for the efficacy of the character.
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Ravenblade - Dwarf Two-Weapon Ranger, Hammer of Moradin (Scales of War)
Moderator
Registered: Oct 2008
Posts: 7786
Gary wrote
The new CB seems, from what I'm reading, to really be more like a beta test at this point, between bugs, crashes, and missing features.
Yes, it does have that feel. They should have advertised as such though and allowed current members to volunteer beta test it instead of provide a faulty product to paying subscribers. I'm sure it will get much better with time, although the whole Silverlight download thing means we can't use it on many computers or smartphones.
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Ravenblade - Dwarf Two-Weapon Ranger, Hammer of Moradin (Scales of War)
Moderator
Registered: Jun 2009
Posts: 3164
It is most urgent in Eberron, where not only are we leveling up after this fight (I think), but two of us are switching to essentials builds where we would lose our free feat.
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Dungeon Master - The Dark Campaign
Sir Muurak - Mul Cavalier 14, Scales of War
Demuriath - Revenant Assassin 5, Points of Light
Kurvilis - Gnome Mage 4, Eberron
Moderator
Registered: Jun 2008
Posts: 5084
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Wizards announces beta testing to start soon for the Virtual Table.

http://www.enworld.org/forum/4e-discussion/297111-dungeons-dragons-virtual-table.html
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Salazar Miller - Human Sorcerer 24 - Scales of War
Azad Halim al'Zahir - Tiefling Battlemind|Paladin 7 - Points of Light
Khavak'aashta - Half-Orc Thief 5 - Eberron
Dwimmerlaik - Revenant Hexblade 2 - Dark Campaign
Moderator
Registered: Oct 2008
Posts: 7786
Gary wrote
Wizards announces beta testing to start soon for the Virtual Table.

http://www.enworld.org/forum/4e-discussion/297111-dungeons-dragons-virtual-table.html


The table would be cool if it comes pre-loaded with their published adventures and if people can take their turns without the DM logged in. On the other hand, we've got a good thing going here with deadgoblins.
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Ravenblade - Dwarf Two-Weapon Ranger, Hammer of Moradin (Scales of War)
Moderator
Registered: Oct 2008
Posts: 7786
There's the question of how we should handle Essentials choices in our builds since the offline charbuilder doesn't include them. There are likely several different ways we can handle this and of course each campaign DM can choose their own rules if they wish. For each, I'll refer to the offline charbuilder as OffC and the online charbuilder as OnC.

To start the discussion, what do you think about omiting non-numerical feats from OnC (i.e. ones that convey extra powers or save throw bonuses, namely things that don't go into attack/damage values or defenses) and then just typing them into our statblocks?

The same can be done for new power choices that aren't now going into the OffC. Just choose what you want and put it into your statblock.

Both feats and powers would need to be typed in detail in the statblock, since not every DM has access to the OnC or even dndinsider to access the compendium.

Thoughts? Suggestions?
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Ravenblade - Dwarf Two-Weapon Ranger, Hammer of Moradin (Scales of War)
Moderator
Registered: Jun 2009
Posts: 3164
I think the better way is to figure out a way to house-rule OnC. Since OffC will never be updated again, continuing to use it will just become harder and harder.
_______________
Dungeon Master - The Dark Campaign
Sir Muurak - Mul Cavalier 14, Scales of War
Demuriath - Revenant Assassin 5, Points of Light
Kurvilis - Gnome Mage 4, Eberron
Moderator
Registered: Oct 2008
Posts: 7786
Jonathan Berg wrote
I think the better way is to figure out a way to house-rule OnC. Since OffC will never be updated again, continuing to use it will just become harder and harder.


Sounds good, but that assumes WotC will add houseruling to the OnC. Also, since their OnC is essentially in beta right now, it may take several months before the bugs are worked out, let alone modifications like houserules.

In the meantime, we could put our characters (or the DM can) in OnC and just leave out a non-numerical feat. However, would it be unfair to do this given that not everyone has a dndinsider subscription?
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Ravenblade - Dwarf Two-Weapon Ranger, Hammer of Moradin (Scales of War)

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