Template talk:Frank and K Material

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Recent Edits[edit]

If you're going to modify the meaning and intent of this template and explain what the Tome material actually does (it's not what your recent edits say, like, at all) completely incorrectly, you should just delete it all instead. Surgo 13:09, 23 August 2009 (MDT)

Why don't you offer a better suggestion then of a way of explaining to newbies, who might not understand the balance of the game or the ways in which characters can become powerful (DMM, wildshape, celerity, etc), and exactly how Tome material is balanced to incorporate the power of these abilities into every PC? (At least that's the theory, if I'm understanding how Tome material is balanced.) --Ghostwheel 13:17, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
Probably because I've explained it on this site 50 times? Here we go again, in a two sentence form: "This is Tome material. That means it's balanced according to the Same Game test, and creates characters of approximately equal power to basic wizards." Surgo 13:46, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
The Same Game Test (DnD Guideline). -- Jota 13:48, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
Except there are characters who can pass the Same Game test (Psychic Warriors, ToB characters, etc) who are less powerful than basic wizards (when played correctly--and newbies wouldn't even understand how powerful basic wizards are when played correctly). Newbies who don't understand that a solid fog is going to be more powerful than a fireball aren't going to understand how it all works just from saying, "this is as powerful as a basic wizard." --Ghostwheel 13:50, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
I'm pretty sure I said "and", not "or". Surgo 13:51, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
That... doesn't really make what I responded incorrect. Most newbies still won't understand what the power of "a basic wizard" is, or be able to make the decision of whether they want everyone in their game to be at that level of power well. --Ghostwheel 14:05, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
Yet, what I said is still better than what is written currently (which is factually incorrect in two parts). Surgo 14:09, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
You're still not addressing my points. --Ghostwheel 14:12, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
I know you fully understand what these differences are Surgo, but not every wiki user does, and it needs to be bold and clear and concise to the layuser just how big a difference exists between Tome material and core content. I would like to know what is considered factually incorrect, and am open to any easier way to get the same point across.   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   14:34, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
I'm a Dnd player for about a year now and I could totally notice a magnificent difference in Frank&K's Tome classes. I sat their staring at their tables for only about 2 secs before saying "Dang, this puppy is way OP. This Frank&K guy must be crazy if they think this is balanced." Then I noticed everything was marked "Tome". I said "Huh, what is Tome?". After another 20 mins of page flipping and laughing at Frank&K's sense of humor I figured it all out. Moral: A template would be nice. --Jay Freedman 14:45, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
Jay, F&K (Tome) stuff is pre-optimized. It also balanced against monsters, by their logic a 10th level fighter should be able to take on a CR 10 monster 50% of the time. If you take a look at, say most outsider you notice their abilities are crazy. Seriously look at this monster, all it spell-like abilities at will, able to put you out of battle for a long time (many abilities like feeblemind at will). I don't see how a SRD fighter could compete. In fact most monsters are exactly like that. You need crazy ability (at least as crazy as monster abilities) to be able to compete in a one-on-one fight. Tome class are actually hard to digest at first, but if you take time to think about it you see the point soon enough. --The Zanni 16:47, 23 August 2009 (MDT)

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That's not the point though. No one's saying that Fighters aren't weak, or that wizards/clerics/druids don't wield Ultimate Power (tm). The point is that there are already classes out there who perform about the same as most monsters--I detailed a few above. Instead of lowering wizards/clerics/druids/etc to the level of these classes, Tome material attempts to raise everyone to the level of CoDzillas. This means that characters like the Psychic Warrior, Swordsage, Warblade, etc, are left below the power curve, rather than being at its middle. You'll note that these classes can often hold their own, and even have a good chance of defeating well-created equal-level monsters. Thus, they should be the basis for creating new classes IMO.
Furthermore, "pre-optimized" has another negative to it--what happens when an optimizer gets his hands on a pre-optimized class? A class that was before balanced becomes even stronger with very little work. Personally, I think that characters should have about the same power level a those in the XPH and in ToB, rather than that of the DMM cleric, god-wizard, and druid. And most games don't have the majority of characters at those levels either. Thus, a notice/caveat/whatever should be applied to F&K's work to note that the characters are all created to function as though they were of the highest tier of power available to PCs. After all, with very little work, a wizard/cleric/druid can usually beat equal-level enemies without much of a problem--the monsters aren't going to win even 50% of the time. --Ghostwheel 16:59, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
We should discuss this from the point of view of the layperson. That being said, there are only three types to discuss: underpowered, balanced, overpowered. For the lay person, balanced will typically be the "core" setup of CR = Average challenge for full party. That being said, Tome stuff is Overpowered. We just need a template that conveys this to the average user, before they think they've found something somehow really powerful but "legal" when they have not.   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   17:15, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
Anyway, the point is that the tome fighter is actually able to fight and defeat a Nalfeshnee (when he reach the appropriated level anyway) 50% of the time you can make the fighter rock or suck by choosing some sucky/cheesy feats or use powerful/sucky magic items. But the fighter using tome feat and regular magic item does. Damn you Hooper, edit conflict :P --The Zanni 17:17, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
I love Frank&K Tome stuff. They rock my socks. They make uber good, uber powerful classes. It just took me 30 minutes of web browsing to discover they ain't balanced against SRD stuff. If a template could help others understand this quickly, I am all for it. --Jay Freedman 18:22, 23 August 2009 (MDT)


I agree with Jay. We don't require a template on the Optimized Builds thread, as they are either in the rules or they include all the required books and allowances right up front. The tome however is not core/legal/balanced in a WotC/Standard way at its very base, so we need something to convey this to the average user. Like Jay said, it could prevent someone from wasting their time only to find out they can't use the information in a regular game.  Hooper   talk    contribs    email   18:40, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
"balanced will typically be the "core" setup of CR = Average challenge for full party." -- this is one of those factual errors I was just talking about. You might want to check your DMGs again because it doesn't say that. What it does says a CR X will use Y% of the resources for a level X party. And it most certainly is balanced in a "core/legal" way. The classes are every bit as good as half the classes in the SRD, and no better. If you're going to spout these inaccuracies about the material, it is better off just deleted so people don't get the wrong impression. Surgo 18:59, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
No Surgo, it is not a factual error. Let me quote directly the example used in the DMG: "A monster of CR 5 is an appropriate challenge for a group of four 5th-level characters." Obviously, if tome material is " made with the concept in mind that a character of a certain level should be able to take on creatures with a CR equal to their level without much trouble" it is overpowered, as the core book states it should take four (not one) same level characters to have an "appropriate" (not "without much trouble" but just the proper amount of a) challenge with their same CR.
Now, people who are engrossed into the Tomes may hate to admit it, but using just the base rules, tome material is overpowered and not balanced in relation to standard game play. As such, and for the benefit of surfers who stumble upon the pages, a warning template should be in place.   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   20:22, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
Looks to me like it says "appropriate challenge". Where is this "average challenge" coming from? (And no, you aren't supposed to be able to take on creatures of your CR "without much trouble" -- that's not what the Same Game test says; it says you have a 50% chance of losing.) Once again, if you're going to misrepresent Tome (which is still equivalent in power to half the SRD classes) by adding misinformation in the form of a template to every page, it's better off deleted. Surgo 20:47, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
What is "half the SRD classes"? Cleric, when combined with DMM? Druid, when you know what spells to take and forms to wildshape into? Wizard, when you're not shooting fireballs and magic missiles, as newbies do? Or like the Fighter, Ranger, Paladin, and Monk? (Some also add the Rogue and Bard to those last ones, and sometimes Barbarian.) --Ghostwheel 20:52, 23 August 2009 (MDT)

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Okay, I see where I misused a word. However, using the above two quotes I provided, one from the 3.5 DMG and one from this template's original statements, I don't see how it isn't crystal clear that this is OP (when using basic DMG/"core" guidelines). Party of 4 same CR = appropriate challenge versus one PC same CR = "without much trouble." I'm going to need to see some proof that any of this is equivalent to SRD in order to follow your train of thought. Looking at just the two base sources, they blatantly say opposing things. Note: Edit conflict - If the Same Game test doesn't say "without much trouble" then why did this template say it? Regardless - the Same Game Test isn't standard, and still needs a warning template.  Hooper   talk    contribs    email   20:52, 23 August 2009 (MDT)

Because the template was originally wrong. I never changed it from the original form presented to me. Actually the same game test is correct in its 50/50 concept, but the argument is a bit longer and you aren't going to believe me anyway (if you actually do want to try to see my point of view in this, the entire argument is summed up in the original Wizards RoW thread. I can summarize it all for you if you're actually interested in hearing it (it has to do with how you are a CR equal to your level, and 1 person still counts as a party for the sake of EL). Now for half the SRD classes: Wizard, Cleric, Druid, Rogue, Sorcerer. That's 5 of the 10 SRD classes. Unless you are going to slap a big honking warning on those too, I don't see how it is at all appropriate for Tome material. Surgo 21:08, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
Maybe some of you guys should actually read the tome, seriously. There no "normal game" anyway, most games have extremely different power level. Thinking there is a standard of design in 3.5e is ignorant (in term of power), just notice the difference between a wizard and a monk, and both are core. A warning is really misinformation. Another edit conflict. --The Zanni 21:10, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
The forums have been down and won't be up for a few days but I would be interested in reading it. I'm not arguing for argument's sake, I just only have the DMG and this template and the tome material on the wiki to base things off of - which lead to all the above conclusions. Warning may be a bad name to call the template, just something that would draw the attention of a viewer and get the point across more than what this originally did. We can't argue that there is no "normal game" as that is all opinion - but I would say if there wasn't then things like the RPGA would be impossible.   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   21:14, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
Premise 1: Your character is level X, and built as a PC. That makes you CR X. (Source: DMG Page 33)
Premise 2: A character or creature that fights itself in a mirror match has a 50% chance of winning and a 50% chance of losing. (An obvious fact.)
Premise 3: A smaller party than 4 has a smaller EL, reduced by 1 per party member (Source: FAQ, and I'm pretty sure this is in the DMG too but I can't find it right now (possibly removed in the 3.5 DMG)).
Now, we unfortunately have to extrapolate because it cannot be strictly proven (or at least I am unfamiliar with a way to do so). The DMG says an EL+3 encounter is a "very difficult" encounter, where one PC "might very well die". Taking premise 2 into account here, we get that a character should have a 50% chance of winning a CR X encounter provided he is CR X, and a 50% chance of losing said encounter.
Now, keep in mind that this is not an "appropriate challenge". This is a challenge where the PC will die 50% of the time. An appropriate challenge is one where none of the PCs are going to die, and you're supposed to be able to handle four of them a day. The Same Game test is not saying you can handle four encounters of CR equal to your level a day. Indeed, if you do that, you'll end up dying. Surgo 21:50, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
Except those classes come with a bunch of assumptions with them. (And no, I wouldn't include rogue. Half the things out there are resistant to them, have better mobility, can see invis, can stay out of 30' range for SA, can't be flanked etc. I actually did the damage results of a rogue full attacking with proper equipment to their level, and it barely broke 50 DPR by level 20 against an AC of 40 in a core-only environment.) First is that the wizard will be played to its utmost capabilities--that they'll bring with them only battlefield control, debuffs, buffs, etc. On the other hand, newbies often use spells like Fireball, Magic Missile, Cone of Cold, Chain Lightning, and more.
Second is that the cleric will buff themselves up with DMM, when many newbies spend their time healing because "that's what clerics are for". And in a core-only environment, clerics don't have DMM, which means they need to spend at least a round (often more) buffing themselves up. And when combat takes around 3-5 rounds, that's a serious expenditure of resources.
Third, for the sorcerer the same is applied as the wizard.
Druids, well... I've always hated druids. 'Nuff said.
If you stop assuming these things and instead take the middle-of-the-road class, the Barbarian in a core-only environment (the class that seems to be neither overpowered nor underpowered, and is comparable in power to the ToB classes for the most part), then not only do the above classes appear overpowered in comparison (when played to their utmost ability), but so does the majority of Tome material.
If you tone down the power of the above classes (for example, slapping the Shapeshift variant on the druid) then there'll still be a few Tome classes that are balanced compared to the barbarian IMO. (I think I listed a few of the ones I know in GD's discussion page.) These should be used as a basis for balance, rather than the most powerful classes taken to the highest level of their ability. --Ghostwheel 22:30, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
Forgot to add one last thing--a number of the more powerful Tome PrCs allow one to solo many of the encounters in the Same Game test with a far higher chance of winning than 50% (closer to 80-90% from what I've playtested), where other classes like the core barbarian, ToB classes, Psychic Warriors, and some of the more balanced Tome classes are at around the level of winning about 50% of the time. --Ghostwheel 22:36, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
So I take it you support adding big warning templates to the SRD classes such as the Druid then? Surgo 22:33, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
Hi. I'm the idiot remember. I was just comparing the Srd Fighter to Frank&K's Fighter Varient. I noticed a difference. I ain't smart enough to use fancy statistics or number games to argue my point. I'll just say, I noticed a difference between Frank&K's Tome and Srd stuff. And... It took me 30 minutes to figure out why. (This is not nessessarily a bad thing. I did learn quite a bit of stuff. I would have preferred a sign or note or something. But im lazy.) --Jay Freedman 22:43, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
Were I redesigning the game with the knowledge that we have now, and were it feasible? Sure. Unfortunately it's not, so nope. But the druid is the highest threshold of power that I can see in a player's hands and for there to still be some semblance of balance when people play non-Tome characters. By having classes that are already as powerful as the druid, and then pushing the envelope further, one can make easily find oneself making non-Tome characters redundant, and feeling useless isn't much fun. So if everyone's playing Tome characters? Go for it. Heck, you could probably have some sort of balance if everyone's playing a god. But playing a non-Tome character when others are playing Tome characters can quickly lead to the same feelings as if one plays a Warrior (the NPC class) to another person's Warblade. Thus, some sort of warning sign is needed so that people know what kind of characters they're getting into, and not to expect for the Tome characters to be at the same power level as the Swordsage, Psychic Warrior, Barbarian, Warblade or Duskblade. --Ghostwheel 22:45, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
What the hell? A warblade got nothing to envy to say a Tome Knight or a Tome Fighter. If both class are in the game and can take Tome feat so can the warblade anyway. Even if the warblade was inferior to say a samurai, would there be any difference if you were overpowered by a samurai rather than a druid? Why take 100 hours to search and find every feats and magi items to make your build effective when you can take a tome class. Not every player on the table have such dedication and patience. Even with tome stuff in game, many classes remain awesome: rogue, warblade, spellcasters and others I probably forgot. But seriously I won't stop myself from rolling an illusionist because one player decided to play a shadowcaster. --The Zanni 22:54, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
Please note that I never said that the Tome Knight or Tome Fighter were overpowered. In fact, I think I listed them amongst the more balanced classes in the list I had before. I was more trying to point out classes that make the others redundant in a combat situation. For example, this class makes both rogue and swordsage redundant in their combat roles, gaining full access to maneuvers, Sneak Attack, and full BAB. For a combat-centered character, there is little reason to take Swordsage or Rogue. Another example of classes that I have a problem with are the ones that heap abilities on classes that are already powerful, such as the various prestige classes that give all kinds of yummy abilities without loss of any sort (I'm looking at you, spellcasting). So no, I don't mean the Knight or Fighter. --Ghostwheel 22:59, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
Why are you bringing this class? It not even a tome class. --The Zanni 23:04, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
See the talk page, it was made to mirror Tome material in power, iirc. Though as far as others, I mean more prestige classes that give you cool stuff without really losing anything, or having prereqs that force you to sacrifice something don't sit well with me. Straight wizards and clerics are powerful enough as-is without PrC abilities; adding PrCs that give them Cool Stuff (tm) make them even stronger, which causes imbalance. --Ghostwheel 23:10, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
Its similar in that it replaces less powerful classes by combining abilities from two or more classes and making them all work for one person. It makes two jobs equal one. It can create imbalance sometimes. Similar to Tome classes. A Tome class can overpower a similar srd class. --Jay Freedman 23:13, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
Ok, let start: Initiate of the Sevenfold Veil, Abjurant Champion, Incantatrix, Mage of the Arcane Order, Divine Oracle. All give full spellcasting and benefit without losing anything. So what? Why would you take a class making you lose something when you have plenty of published class granting you goodies for free? And all these classes can be taken by a wizard btw. --The Zanni 23:16, 23 August 2009 (MDT)

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Sure, those aren't too balanced either, but at the very least, you'll notice that they require a few throw-away feats. Skill Focus (Spellcraft), Spell Focus (Abjuration), Cooperative Spell, Iron Will, Skill Focus (Religion)... all of these will rarely see use. At least they're giving up something for these abilities. The above classes? Virtually nothing. --Ghostwheel 23:21, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
Oh no, one feat for awesome power :P. Spellcaster have few use for feat anyway, and some class such as the loremaster give what it take you back. Divine Oracle: 1 feat for a d6 (very very good for a wizard), evasion in any armor (useful, because it still evasion even if the wizard can't wear armor), full-spellcasting and eventually the ability to act during surprise round. It kinda cool for a feat don't you think? I don't say this class is overpowered, it just an example of what a good wizard PrC look like today. Now, why making something obviously worse than what already there? The Initiate of the Sevenfold veil make you immune to magic, the Incantatrix allow you to persist any spells. All that without losing a single caster level. --The Zanni 23:30, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
I remember reading Frank&K's stuff. They said some standard classes and rules could use some rethinking. Their Tome stuff is a product of this rethinking. Does that make it "Better" and "Overpowered", or does it make it "Better" and "Unbalanced"? I dont know. But their stuff is definitly different. Maybe letting users know that is a good idea? (Cause most users dont know about this evolution over time; where classes get changed and tweeked to be more useful, powerful, and better balanced.) --Jay Freedman 23:38, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
But adding a ugly template over all of tome articles (many are fully playable in what your guys describe as a "normal game") is kinda rude. Don't you think? --The Zanni 23:49, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
Yes. Its probably the rudest thing I could think of. I'm dead serious. Its helpful. ...and rude. (Is that bad? Does this wiki really care about offending people?) --Jay Freedman 23:51, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
Personally i think this template should be deleted, it not possible to prove it overpowered and the material was play-tested. You should read the tome, it a good read, you can find them in the sourcebook section of the wiki (too lazy to link them :P). --The Zanni 23:56, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
I've read them, and agree, there's a lot of good material in there. On the other hand, there's also some material that's unbalanced. I know that there are some people who consider that everything touched by F&K is pure gold, but looking at things critically, some things are just too over the top IMO. --Ghostwheel 23:58, 23 August 2009 (MDT)
The problem there is IMO, not everyone share the same opinion. IMO we should add a underpowered template on most class on the wiki, but I understand people have different games than mine, so I keep my mouth shut. ON the other hand I also understand that I am not alway right, another reason to keep one mouth shut sometime. I mean all classes on this wiki are drastically different from one another, it literally a herd made of black sheet. Power-wise even work done by the same author can be very different. So if we are putting a big ugly template on one articles, we should put one over all articles. --The Zanni 00:04, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
A better idea might be educating people about the different power levels in D&D, perhaps porting over the tier guide to here, and expanding it to point out exactly how the different classes balance, and in what ways they can be made even more powerful/less powerful than their tier. That way, they can have an understanding of the system as a whole, and be able to make that judgement for themselves. --Ghostwheel 00:06, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
That said, I think most everyone agreed this template should be deleted. Should I put the candidate for deletion template on it? --The Zanni 01:24, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
I'm not sure if that's right either--since the template's already been around, perhaps it's best to leave it until we have a better solution. --Ghostwheel 01:26, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
I read there a delay on deletion anyway, two weeks. I am not sure if the template was ever used. --The Zanni 01:30, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
No Zanni, it appears as if two people are arguing (you and Surgo) for either leaving it alone or deletion, where as Jay and I are arguing for a template to be used to inform users of the difference. So there is no "most people" wanting deletion, neither is there "most people" wanting it altered. Until an agreement can be made or one side obviously outvotes another as a clear indicator of wiki wishes, neither should be done. Whatever you argue, Tome material is different than Core Content. Its very basic premise makes it different. Therefore, I feel like a template stating that this is different should be used on all pages.   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   06:04, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
I'm glad Ghostwheel thinks he's the only one capable of "looking at things critically". Good to know we have the one man in the world who is capable of doing that on the job! Anyway, my point now is the same as when I started -- either make the template not a warning and free of factual inaccuracies, or delete all the material you'd otherwise apply it to. Surgo 07:05, 24 August 2009 (MDT)

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Then we should agree on what is fact and what is incorrect. If we agree that it isn't a warning as much as an "infobox" then what information should it have? I'd say it needs to clearly state the main difference between the the "core" content and the tome content, which would be: Core CR is built around making it an appropriate challenge for a party of four, while Tome CR is built around making it a 50/50 challenge for an individual. If we can find a simple, clear and concise way to state the difference, then we should be fine. No need to use any words like "overpowered" or "unbalanced."   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   07:41, 24 August 2009 (MDT)

But...that's not how core content actually is. Half the core classes go 50/50 or better with creatures of their CR, while the other half do not. Surgo 07:50, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
Its premise is built like that, while this premise is different, regardless of personal feelings.   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   07:53, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
...uh, what? Personal feelings don't enter into this at all. I'm talking about what core content actually is. Somehow the fact that it doesn't line up with what everyone else is claiming is a personal feeling? Surgo 07:58, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
Hooper, you have yet to address the fact that a level 10 wizard, is, BY DEFINITION, CR 10. Why don't you do so, and explain to us why "Has a 50/50 chance of winning mirror-matches" is a bad concept? You're outright ignoring the points other people are making. Or, better yet - provide a better playtesting alternative. Dragon Child 11:25, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
Really, would you care to show me where it says a wizard is CR 10 by definition. I've pointed out two facts with quotes taken directly from the provided sources, and no one has yet to show me how they are wrong. Keep spouting your opinions all you want, but I'm not arguing that. All I'm saying is that this entire premise is different than how CR is stated-by-WotC-in-the-DMG works for 3.5, and it needs to inform users up front of that fact. Furthermore, I am not arguing that it is a bad concept (nor am I arguing it is a good one). I think some people are only defending it because they like it and think I am attacking it, which is not the case. All I am saying is it is different at a premise/concept level and all the articles need to state that for the benefit of the common user.   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   11:28, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
Pages 112-126 of the 3.5 DMG have several example NPCs, all of which have their CR equal to their level. That is not an opinion, that is a fact. It is a fact that if an NPC is of a PC race, it's CR is equal to its level. And again - do you have a better idea? Do you have ANY standard on which classes should be balanced? This is an actual mechanical test, that deals in facts, and NOT opinions. Do you have a test that takes opinions out of the equation? This DOES quite plainly fit with what the DMG says. Dragon Child 11:42, 24 August 2009 (MDT)

Possible Text[edit]

Here is my suggestion, discuss:

This page contains materials originally made by Frank & K.As such, it has been made :with the concept in mind that a character of a certain level should be able to take on :creatures with a CR equal to their level with a fifty percent change of success, and is :balanced in a way as to allow for this. In contrast, standard CRs are balanced in a way so :that a CR is an appropriate challenge for a party of four same level characters. Check with :your Dungeon Master before using.

  Hooper   talk    contribs    email   07:53, 24 August 2009 (MDT)

My problem with this is that the whole 50/50 thing was derived straight from the DMG definitions of CR, party level, and EL, so claiming this is inaccurate. Surgo 07:57, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
Derived and altered. Unless you can prove otherwise. The basic premise, whether it can be min/maxed or argued or each classes powers, is exactly what I said before: CR = appropriate challenge for party of 4. The basic premise of this is that it is CR = 50/50 for one player. This is different at a basic level: the premise, the concept. All Tome material is made with this concept in mind (whether it works or not is not our argument) while core material is made with the original concept in mind (whether it works or not is not our argument). That is what is being discussed.   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   08:00, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
An appropriate challenge that you can somehow have 4 of in a day. You're comparing apples and oranges. I have to go for the next 2 days now -- please either make the template into something that's accurate (and if you're going to apply such a warning, it had better be applied to the Wizard, Cleric, and Druid too) or just delete all the Tome stuff. Surgo 08:03, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
The warning would be for someone to check with their DM before using material that the DM may not be allowed as it is based on a different concept than the core content, and as such may not balance well with core content using players. Therefore no warning is needed on SRD classes. That is all. You yourself have admitted that those two facts are correct, actually admitting them above. That is all. We don't care about the exacts of how it works or why it was made - it is just different, and players should not have to hunt to know that as Jay did.   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   08:08, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
Why even using a warning is beyond me. Oh well, I just think it kinda unneeded. I mean you have to check with your DM to use any stuff anyway. It only going to give people bad impression about Tome stuff IMO. --The Zanni 08:53, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
Yes, you should always check with your DM, but this is to make sure the person doubly checks - as this isn't just homebrew stuff - it is based on a different premise and built around that. We're not trying to say either one is better or worse, just wanting to make sure people understand the difference. We don't want to give anyone a bad opinion (though we don't have to give them a good one either). That will be their choice.   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   09:02, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
And btw, not all tome stuff is written by F&K, tome stuff is community work based around F&K creations, the tomes. IMO this template is just going to turn into a pain in the a$$. --The Zanni 09:40, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
I placed the text here so we can figure out something better, so F&K can be removed if deemed necessary. Just submit your idea for what the text should say. I will note that the only individuals arguing that the tome stuff isn't different are people who consider core stuff underpowered, atleast that is how it is coming across.   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   09:51, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
How about this?:
This page utilizes the The Same Game TestAs such, it has been made with the concept in mind that a character of a certain level should be able to take on creatures with a CR equal to their level with a fifty percent change of success, and is balanced in a way as to allow for this. In contrast, standard CRs are balanced in a way so that a CR is an appropriate challenge for a party of four same level characters. Check with your Dungeon Master before using.   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   15:10, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
Delete everything after in contrast and I think you're fine. Or perhaps:
This article is designed to create characters capable of passing the the Same Game Test (, and that have a power level roughly akin to a SRD:Wizard). As such, it has been made with the idea that a character of a certain level is an encounter of its own level, and said character should be able to take on creatures with a CR equal to their level with a fifty percent chance of success. It is balanced accordingly.
Parentheses optional in that last one. Or:
This article was designed to create characters capable of defeating roughly fifty percent of encounters with a level equivalent to their own in solo combat. It is balanced accordingly.
Nothing about Tomes, or Frank and K, just the facts, albeit only a one or two of them-- Jota 21:34, 24 August 2009 (MDT)


Now we're getting somewhere. However, I don't think we should mention any particular class, and we should note the fundamental difference in how they are based for a CR (that way the viewer doesn't read the 50 percent bit and then have to go look up how WotC does it). Trying to mention a particular class brings about opinionated things that just can't be proven, so we should stick to the two basic premises that are the difference. I agree that we should touch on the root issue - Same Game Test, not F&K or Tome.   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   21:59, 24 August 2009 (MDT)

The Argument, in Plain Form[edit]

Before you apply any warnings to anything, please refute this argument. Please specifically say WHICH of these points is untrue - don't tell me additional information, tell me what I'm staying here is incorrect, and where.

  • A) According to the DMG, a Level X NPC class is CR X. (Meaning: A level 5 human fighter is CR 5)
  • B) A PC of level X will be equally strong, or stronger than, an NPC of level X. (A level 5 human fighter PC is as strong as a level 5 human fighter NPC)
  • C) If the PC of level X is as strong or stronger than an NPC of level X, than the PC should win most of the time in 1v1 fights. (A level 5 human fighter PC will beat a level 5 human fighter NPC most of the time)

Here is the logic, clearly stated. Which part do you have a problem with - A, B, or C? Dragon Child 11:32, 24 August 2009 (MDT)

Okay, let us see:
  • A is wrong. I don't have a DMG in front of me, and if someone can quote from it later and prove me wrong, then I'll accept that. However, CRs are not for PCs. Note: I see your above answer for the part of the DMG that uses example NPCs and gives them a CR. That is not the same thing.
  • B subjective, cant be proven. Theoretically they should be close.
  • C NPCs do not necessarily equal CRs
Okay, now you can try to refute two facts of mine:
  • The 3.5 DMG states the following: "A monster of CR 5 is an appropriate challenge for a group of four 5th-level characters."
  • The Same Game Test, and thus this material based off of that test, states: a character should beat approximately half of the challenges of its level.
Now, taking the two above simple statements, it is crystal clear that their concept is different, and therefore material based off one may differ greatly in its build than the other.   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   11:43, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
Ok, hold on. A is true, pages 112-126 of the DMG prove it. B is not subjective. If we have two characters who are EQUAL, and we make them fight multiple times, it's equivalent to flipping a coin who wins. That is NOT subjective, it's basic math. Your opposition to C doesn't make sense. Please restate that sentence. Now, here's your problem. My arguments actually made sense in a logical way. Yours don't - that's not to say you're irrational, but you're not using mathimatical logic in the way I am. Just because something is true, doesn't mean something ELSE can't be true, too! A monster of CR 5 IS an appropriate challenge for a group of level 5 PCs. It's ALSO a 50/50 chance of death against a single level 5 PC, or a group of level 1 PCs. ALL of these statements are true, and backed up by the DMG. Nothing here is contradictory. Dragon Child 11:49, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
Here is a statement from the SRD: "Class levels that increase a monster’s existing strengths are known as associated class levels. Each associated class level a monster has increases its CR by 1." It then describes what is and is not an associated class, in such language that is clear that for a human or elf, ALL classes are associated classes. Source: http://www.dandwiki.com/wiki/SRD:Improving_Creatures Dragon Child 11:53, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
Listen, I shouldn't have to use any mathematical logic - and neither should the average user who stumbles upon one of the tome pages. Hence the template. You guys keep saying "if you do this, or if you do this, it's the same thing." or you're saying "half of the classes are the same." You keep saying "well the rules/dmg show this, so based on that..." What if I don't want to do anything? Or what about the other classes? If you're using something in the DMG to base off of, what about its clear and concise wording on CRs?
Fact: This material is created at its core with a different challenge/power concept than core content. Refute that fact. If you can't, then it needs a template.   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   11:56, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
Quotes to back up Hoopers bolded point above:
  • And so we really need Fighting Men to be a lot more interesting and effective than they are in the rules. The basic setup of the game has changed a lot, but Fighters have changed only a little. In a very real way, the Player's Handbook hands us Fighting Men who would be better suited to appear in groups of 3 per player than to stand alone. And really, that has got to stop.

-Frank&K. Races of War 3.5 Sourcebook.

  • The biggest single impediment to playing Dungeons and Dragons is that the Warriors are not set up to scale to the same exponential power scale as the Wizards and Monsters.

-Frank&K. Races of War 3.5 Sourcebook.

  • Feats were an interesting idea when they were ported to 3rd edition D&D. But let's face it; they don't go nearly far enough. ...because the authors didn't want to offend people with too radical a change. Well, now we've had third edition for 6 years, and we're offended.

-Frank&K. Races of War 3.5 Sourcebook.

  • The breakdown of characters with class levels and their levels in society at large in the DMG is almost exactly wrong in every respect.

-Frank&K. Races of War 3.5 Sourcebook.

  • Fighters are often handed to beginning players in order to help them learn the ropes. This is a cruel practice that dates back to when the Fighter was explicitly a weak class that players were forced to play to the (quit proximate) death if for whatever reason they didn't roll well enough on their stats to play a real character.

-Frank&K. Fighter, Tome. 3.5e Base Class --Jay Freedman 12:00, 24 August 2009 (MDT)


Hooper, please actually respond to my refutations, and do not change the subject. Also, explain to me what power level the Wizard, Cleric, and Druid are based on. In order to prove they're the same, I have to know what I'm comparing. Not a party, explain to me how INDIVIDUAL CLASSES are meant to be balanced. You keep comparing apples to oranges. Also, DMG 3.5, page 37: "An NPC with a PC class has a Challenge Rating equal to the NPC's level. Thus, an 8th-level sorcerer is an 8th-level encounter." Can you please now admit that I am not factually wrong about that, and that, in fact, YOU were? Dragon Child 12:06, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
What are you talking about, you changed the subject. This is the subject: Does the different premise that the Tome material is based on warrant a template to inform users of said difference? That is the subject. You guys keep saying it isn't different when the thing says itself that it is. All the rest of this is just smoke and mirrors. It is different, I vote we add a template to all tome material pages or other Same Game Test material to help users understand said difference.   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   12:09, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
I'm with Hooper on this. Does the different premise that the Tome material is based on warrant a template to inform users of said difference? That is the subject. --Jay Freedman 12:11, 24 August 2009 (MDT)


Why is it different? The Same Game Test is meant to follow DMG guidelines. It's meant to help design a class such that it will be able to be a part of a party of level X such that it sees CRs of level X as an appropriate challenge. It DOES fit that. It just tests it in a different way. It's also meant to be of a level such that if the party of level X is fighting an X+2 encounter, it will be challenging (or whatever term the DMG uses) and an X+4 encounter will be very difficult (or whatever term the DMG uses). This is just a test you can put a class through to see if it DOES fit those guidelines. This is the major thing you are not understanding. Frank isn't using different guidelines, he just devised a test to make sure things fit those guidelines. Dragon Child 12:13, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
Frank&K dont believe you Dragon Child. "the Player's Handbook hands us Fighting Men who would be better suited to appear in groups of 3 per player than to stand alone. And really, that has got to stop." _Frank&K. Races of War 3.5 Sourcebook. (Frank&K has a different perspective than Wizards of the Coast does.) --Jay Freedman 12:16, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
I KNOW what Frank thinks. They DO try to follow the DMG guidelines. They (and many others) feel that the core fighter does NOT follow the DMG guidelines, and is too weak. That doesn't mean they disagree with the guidelines, as you're incorrectly claiming, it means they disagree with how well some of the classes fit them. Dragon Child 12:19, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
So we should be adding a warning template to the srd martial classes instead??? --Jay Freedman 12:20, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
Only by Hooper and your logic. It clearly doesn't fit with the stated DMG guidelines, after all. Dragon Child 12:22, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
Sorry, that was said stupidly. You are right. My bad. What I meant to say was... How can we communicate your above statement to lay users. Because your pervious statement above is AWESOME!!! I want your help Dragon Child. (I'm an idiot) --Jay Freedman 12:20, 24 August
No need to argue like this gentlemen. Dragon, you have shown me no proof that the difference between the Same Game Test and the Core Content doesn't affect game play. It does, obviously. They are fundamentally different. As such, a template is in order.   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   12:27, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
I don't know Hooper. Maybe where fixing a symtom and not the disease? They other guys may have a point. --Jay Freedman 12:29, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
Hooper, you have yet to prove there is an actual difference, and if there is a difference, that it effects game play. It is not MY job to prove a negative. It is YOUR job to prove not one, but two positives, and you have yet to do so in any way besides repeating that everything you say is fact and everything everyone else says is opinion (which is outright NOT TRUE, as proven by your rejection and refusal to admit you were wrong with the CR bit). They are not fundamentally different. No template is in order. Dragon Child 12:31, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
Jay, they have valid arguments for using this system, yes. But that isn't the point. What WotC dictate is Core, and we base around that. Homebrew add ons are one things, changing basic systems is another. A user coming to the site will most likely be expecting homebrew material that will fit in with their game. Anything that requires special things or a different point of view on the game itself, should make that user aware. Hence, template. We don't change SRD, we just note that this doesn't follow those same trains of thought.   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   12:33, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
F&K not changing the game... I think DC and Surgo pretty much proved the whole thing. On the other hand, I don't think putting a big ugly template above an article is going to change think. It not a warning it eye pollution, and as I said if they want to find out how the class were made and other detail they can read the tome, it linked to the page anyway... or just go read the talk page most of them must have a similar discussion. --The Zanni 14:38, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
The average user shouldn't have to look up anything. Come to the site, have the core books, and be able to use the information on the page. If they need any additional information, then the page in question needs to state so at the top in a clear and concise, attention getting manner. Obviously, these Tome pages need that, which the original creator of the template must also of agreed with. Does it hurt anyone by putting it on here? No. Does it assist users who end up on the page, much like Jay described? Yes. I don't see what the big fuss about it is.  Hooper   talk    contribs    email   14:42, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
It is clear there a disagreement over the system, the same game test is completely legit and it was proved. The fact is that you can't balance a class based on a party, even if it did it completely unneeded to add a big ugly template on anything not following the DMG to the letter. If you put a template over tome article, you should put over every single campaign setting using houserule, over every classes using weird mechanic, every page using non-core bonus type. They deserve this template more than tome's work. I think much proof were given, at least enough to say the system is legit. --The Zanni 14:49, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
If you would like to put together a NON-UGLY header explaining that some tome material references other tome material, and they are meant to be used as a whole to improve the system, that's fine. If you use the word "unbalanced", you're just interjecting unproven opinions into it. Dragon Child 14:51, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
I plainly said above that the words "unbalanced" and "overpowered" do not need to appear in the text (see my given example of text). If you have a way you think is better to say it, then put forth an example. As to what Zanni said, that is a straw man argument and once again off subject. No one is arguing whether it is legit or not, just different - which it is. Much more so than houserules, though all those pages state to check with DM. These should to. I don't care if you find it "ugly". We need Information as a priority, aesthetics is second.   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   14:54, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
However, an informative and nice looking-but-attention grabing template will be the best. It could also have the added benefit of creating a category for all Same Game material and placing every page it is put on in that category, making it easy to find all SGT articles for the more informed or inquisitive user.   Hooper   talk    contribs    email   15:03, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
By ugly I meant, well a big template over an article (I just use the term ugly with anything I don't like). IMO it unneeded but I guess I can tolerate it if it actually contain right information. I may also add, with all respect that you dismissed all the proofs Surgo and DC brought with a wave of hand. I guess it not making my point any better though. If a header must be on tome page, it must at least contain true informations. I think everyone agreed? May I also add it what we are debating right now, so we are going to have a huge deal of pain going through this anyway. So why not just scrap the god damned header instead. Both are bullheaded though, so it not like we see things advance anyway. --The Zanni 15:05, 24 August 2009 (MDT)
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