Wednesday, March 27, 2019

FIGHT (GLOG Fighter)

I will take any excuse to use Darkest Dungeon character art (Darkest Dungeon wiki)

I’ve written close to two dozen GLOG classes, but most of them just sit moldering in a folder. It’s time to fix that.


For every Fighter template you have, increase your HP by 1.

A: Cleave, Parry
B: Tricky, Rally
C: Sentinel, Threat Assessment
D: Extra Attack

Starting Equipment: One Weapon of Your Choice, Chain Armor (2 Inventory Slots, 1 Armor)

When you kill a creature or roll max damage, you can make another attack.

When an enemy attacks you, you can sacrifice a piece of combat equipment (weapon, shield, armor) or fancy clothing to reduce the incoming damage by 1d6.

Advantage on Gambits. Gambits are added to attacks. Say what you’d like to do (“I disarm the goblin”) and what will happen if you fail (“the goblin gets a free attack”). The GM has final say. Save (STR in this case) to try the gambit. You still deal damage regardless of the Save (like regular attacks).

Add +[templates] to Hired Hand Morale Saves.

Once per round, when an enemy leaves your melee range, you can attack them.

Threat Assessment
For every 10 minutes looking at or 1 round fighting a person or creature, you can tell one of: how many HD it has (roughly equivalent to level), how many mundane attacks it has, and how much damage each attack deals. Additionally, if it’s a person and you make eye contact, you can tell how many sapients they’ve killed: None, One, or Many.

Extra Attack
You can attack twice in each round.

Spear and shield is an underused combo, I think (Darkest Dungeon wiki)

A Noble Line (of Fighters)

The lineage of my GLOG Fighter is an interesting one, so I’m going to talk about it before my notes on my class. We start with Arnold K’s Goblin Guts Fighter, which is notable for inventing (for GLOG purposes) the ability Notches: as Fighters gets kills with specific weapons, those weapons get stronger.

Next in line is Skerples’ Fighter. Unlike Arnold’s Fighter, this one gets an Extra Attack at first level, due to the ambiguity of “+1 Attack” in the original Goblin Guts Fighter (I asked Arnold and it actually means +1 Attack Stat). Since most GLOG Fighters are based off of Skerples’, though, that small misinterpretation has rippled out to most of the GLOGosphere. Extra Attack *is* a good Fighter ability, though, so its popularity is not unwarranted.

Now we’re at my first Fighter. I moved Notches to first level, since I like classes that get their primary unique features at first level. I moved Extra Attack to second level, since it’s very strong. I moved Parry to third level, since I wanted my fighters a bit less survivable. This is the only version of the class I’ve had played in one of my games, and I concluded two things: Notches is too slow and abstract and Extra Attack is still too strong that early.

Before I move on to my version of the class, I need to make an honorable mention of zoeology31's Fighter; it rolls a d20 after each kill, and if the number is under the weapon’s Notches, the Fighter gets a new ability. I played in her campaign, which had a couple fighters, and it worked quite well.

Design Notes

Fighter is one third of the THIEF - FIGHTER - WIZARD triad, the Primary Classes at the top of my class list. I think a well-designed Thief is the best class for new players (they can be simple and still encourage shenanigans), but Fighter comes in second place for sheer simplicity, so I kept the ability list static (my Thieves are randomized and my Wizards use schools).

Now, for a review of the class itself. It hasn’t been tested yet, but I feel good about it.

Stat Buff and Starting Equipment
HP makes Fighters a bit tougher, as does Chain Armor (statted out for Moonhop). Getting your choice of starting weapon is fairly powerful on its own, especially in campaigns where guns are available.

It’s sorta like Extra Attack Lite. I’m writing all my classes to be compatible with Moonhop, which doesn’t have attack rolls, so instead of “activates on crits and kills,” Cleave activates on max damage and kills. That means that low damage weapons Cleave more often, which I choose to treat as a feature rather than a bug.

I came up with this version of the ability as I was writing this post; I don’t like the 1/day damage reduction parry because it would be the only limited-use ability my Fighter gets, and I like consistency. This version was inspired by the popular Shields Shall Be Splintered houserule. I’m hoping that making it a class-limited ability with lower damage reduction will balance out the more frequent, equipment-limited use.

Gambits are a catchall for risky things like grappling and targeted shots. My hope is that by making this ability strong, Fighters will go out of their way to do gambits, reminding the other players that they exist.

Impress is an ability that makes Fighters better with hirelings, but I don’t think I’ve ever had players in a situation where they could use it. I’m hoping this simpler hireling buff will be more useful and encourage all players to use hirelings, much like Tricky could encourage all players to use gambits.

When I’ve played 5e, I’ve found that reaction attacks really slow things down and confuse new players, and they also make it very difficult to make a fighting retreat. New players are important to me, as are fighting retreats, so I removed them from the main rules. It’s a fun class ability, though; it makes Fighters feel like badass combat experts.

Threat Assessment
Wizards get the ability to tell whether things are magical by touching them. It’s a useful ability, but a lot of the time it provides enough information to freak your players out and not enough to actually help them. My hope is that this ability will do the same when the party encounters a kindly old grandma with Many kills.

Extra Attack
It’s a very powerful ability. Between Extra Attack, Cleave, and Sentinel, my Fighters get a LOT of attacks, so they could be very overpowered. I tend to make most of my classes too powerful, I think, although they haven’t seen a ton of testing so far.