Hardy talent thoughts

Cubicle 7 // 2018
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Solberg
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu May 02, 2019 11:49 pm

Fri May 03, 2019 12:04 am

Hi all
Was rolling a character with one of my players. He wanted to play a wood elf hunter. Nothing wrong in that, nice with a ranger who was hunting game and not being Legolas.
Oh was I wrong....
first there is the BS thing, he used a 19: so his bs was 49, plus the total of 15 he could put into it from character creation. Then the hunter of course has marksman +5 bs. And then he put 4 adv so he now has a bow skill of 73. Without any starting xp. Sounds pretty high to me.
Anyway, the biggest surprise was his wounds. He had taken the hardy talent from the elf talent list, and then he took it again with his career talent. So that means that he will have SB+2*Tb+Wb+2*Tb. In his case he ended up with 24 wounds.

Do you think that the hardy talent is too powerful? Not many warrior careers has this talent, why is that?

Kind regards
Solberg
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Danke Dave
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Location: Canadia

Fri May 03, 2019 12:57 am

Hardy is very strong, one of my friends almost has Ogre level of wounds as a Witch Hunter. He started as a Hunter as well. Can't say it's OP though, the biggest thing that kills his character is the crits. You should keep in mind he is an Elf, and doesn't have all those Fate/fourtune or Resolve/Resilience points to spend. Elves do have IIRC, at least 40 advances on Humans.

The player should not be able to put 15 into his his bow training from character creation, it specifically says you can't have over 10 advancements once you finish career/species. And if he is taking Marksman + another level in Hardy, that would cost the player the 100xp to buy the Marksmen talent (Buying Hardy would cost more, so you can take it for "free" at career).
CapnZapp
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Fri May 03, 2019 2:03 am

Several takeaways here:

Elves and Dwarves are ridiculously strong combatants in 4th edition. A +20% bonus (compared to humans) is a much much bigger deal than in 2E. I get that the designers were frustrated that the +10% bonus that 2E gives felt too inconsequential, but they made the mistake of both increasing the numbers AND changing the rules. A +20% to Weapon Skill in 4E is easily equal to a +40% in 2E the way opposed rolls work.

It is too late for many of us (whose players have already rolled up characters) but I cannot recommend the following strongly enough:
- don't let Elves and Dwarves choose their stereotypical careers (as archers and melee bruisers respectively). The difference between a demihuman warrior and a human civilian is so vast the game becomes nigh-unplayable, if you have any aspiration to have the entire team enjoy a combat once in a while.

Tl;dr: while the 2E +10% was not spectacular, at least Green Ronin knew how to design a balanced team game.

My personal opinion is that giving Dwarves +10% to Weapon Skill and Elves +10% to Ballistic Skill is more than enough, given the tendency of Dwarves to end up as heavily armored fighters, and Elves to end up as fast and accurate skirmishers. This is such a huge mistake from C7 it should be issued as errata.
CapnZapp
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Location: Norsca

Fri May 03, 2019 2:10 am

In comparison, getting +4 or so extra Wounds from (each time you take) Hardy is of minor consequence. Don't worry about it.

Increasing your offensive or defensive skill values is much more important for the purpose of staying alive. This is because when you finally meet an enemy capable of inflicting Wound loss on you, having extra Wounds to lose only buys you a round or so.

The 2E dichtomy of "a foe can be scary by being skilled or by being tough" is significantly diminished in 4E. Sure, if you talk Toughness + Armor values in excess of 10 or so, but believe it or not, many if not most Warhammer campaigns feature very few such monstrosities.

The idea one NPC focuses on Toughness while another focuses on Weapon Skill is laughable in 4E. The first one will not be a threat at all while the second might well cause the group a lot of grief.

in 4E, skill is king.
CapnZapp
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Fri May 03, 2019 2:24 am

Danke Dave wrote:
Fri May 03, 2019 12:57 am
The player should not be able to put 15 into his his bow training from character creation, it specifically says you can't have over 10 advancements once you finish career/species.
Just as a heads-up: what the rule actually says is not quite the same. You might well be both right.
Allocate 40 Advances
to your eight starting Skills, with no more than 10 Advances
allocated to any single Skill at this stage.
(my emphasis)

It is entirely reasonable to interpret "at this stage" to mean the Career Skills and Talents step. That is, to not include the previous "Species Skills and Talents" section into "this step." Conversely, interpreting it to mean "up until this stage" is also reasonable. It is just another example of poor clarity and imprecise rules-writing skills from C7.

Anyway, if the rule only applies to career advances, it is entirely possible to first allocate 5 advances from species and then another 10 advancs from career (if your species and career aligns, of course) for a total of 15 advances before gameplay begins.

Of course, arguing about this technicality only risks losing sight of the greater picture: that allowing characters to start with 64 in a combat-related skill is entirely broken given that WFRP features civilian characters which will begin with lower than 30. By this I mean that not only did C7 double the 2E race bonus. They also relaxed the limits on skill advancement. The result is a double (triple?) whammy that really does the game no good - there is no reason why it should be possible to effectively start one character at level five while another isn't even level one. Any single fix (from the perspective of 2E) would have been plenty. That is the 4E curse - it contains a lot of individually good ideas mixed together into a hugely unbalanced mess with zero oversight.
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Orin J.
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Fri May 03, 2019 3:49 am

Solberg wrote:
Fri May 03, 2019 12:04 am
Hi all
Was rolling a character with one of my players. He wanted to play a wood elf hunter. Nothing wrong in that, nice with a ranger who was hunting game and not being Legolas.
Oh was I wrong....
first there is the BS thing, he used a 19: so his bs was 49, plus the total of 15 he could put into it from character creation. Then the hunter of course has marksman +5 bs. And then he put 4 adv so he now has a bow skill of 73. Without any starting xp. Sounds pretty high to me.
Anyway, the biggest surprise was his wounds. He had taken the hardy talent from the elf talent list, and then he took it again with his career talent. So that means that he will have SB+2*Tb+Wb+2*Tb. In his case he ended up with 24 wounds.

Do you think that the hardy talent is too powerful? Not many warrior careers has this talent, why is that?

Kind regards
Solberg
in short, while it looks like a lot, 4th has some power creep issues so odds are you're going to find that it's not hard to down them regardless once you actually pump the stats of enemies enough to challenge them since successes determine what the damage is. this makes it superhard to balance combats and i still have no idea how to do that if i'm honest, but hardy is more of a band aid to the issue than an issue itself.
Solberg
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu May 02, 2019 11:49 pm

Fri May 03, 2019 2:43 pm

Thank you for all your input.
I did indeed interpret the rules as you explained +15.
I will let hardy stay and turn my attention to the many other problems I find.

But have I made a mistake or is he not allowed to take hardy twice from the start?
I know the cost for taking a talent a second time is 200 xp. And if he so chooses to take it a third time 300 xp.

The racial inequality is indeed to much in this game. It is however hard not to let the elf fiddle with his bow and arrow. Likewise keeping the dwarf away from his tank role.
But as stated my biggest problem will be finding the balance in their challenges/opponents etc..
CapnZapp
Posts: 99
Joined: Tue Jan 08, 2019 2:15 am
Location: Norsca

Sun May 05, 2019 3:43 am

Solberg wrote:
Fri May 03, 2019 2:43 pm
Thank you for all your input.
I did indeed interpret the rules as you explained +15.
I will let hardy stay and turn my attention to the many other problems I find.

But have I made a mistake or is he not allowed to take hardy twice from the start?
I know the cost for taking a talent a second time is 200 xp. And if he so chooses to take it a third time 300 xp.

The racial inequality is indeed to much in this game. It is however hard not to let the elf fiddle with his bow and arrow. Likewise keeping the dwarf away from his tank role.
But as stated my biggest problem will be finding the balance in their challenges/opponents etc..
No I'd say that's no mistake. As long as he paid 200 XP since the game gave him the first level of the Talent for free, you're good.

I think the only recourse is to discuss with the players before they roll up characters. That is, you will not be able to fix this imbalance as the GM.

The very thing that fixed 2E whiffiness (opposed combat Tests) also make 4E ultra-sensitive to combat skill scores that vary more than ±10, tops. Even having one character with WS 50% and another with WS 30% is borderline problematic. Especially since the game isn't especially interested in making sure this spread doesn't widen. In fact, since civilians are given non-combat skills and warriors are given combat skills, the gulf is more likely than not to widen.

If they make Elf archers and Dwarf axe-wielders, that's okay as long as the players realize there will be no balance in combat. The group's expectations must shift to match the realities of 4E probabilities. The warriors must realize they are unlikely to feel individually threatened, and instead set the safety of their friends as their main goal. And the civilians must realize their fate is in the hands of their warrior friends.

This makes WFRP 4E diametrically opposite a game like Dungeons & Dragons where for each edition the combat ability of the classes have been strengthened. That is a game where everybody is a capable adventurer expected to wade into monster combat over and over again. Characters are differentiated as social creature, explorers or academics a distant second.

If they desire combat balance (i.e. that every character more or less can contribute in violent situations) the only solution is to roll up Elf and Dwarf Agitators, Pedlars and Rat Catchers, and reserve the Outlaws and Pit-Fighters for Human and Halfling characters.

If that's not acceptable, I'm afraid the only good recourse is to not allow Elves and Dwarves in your game. Certainly there is nothing unreasonable by telling your players you are offering a WFRP campaign for an all-Human party.
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