Chosen class design discussion

(also re: : I noticed today that “political economy” is actually listed as an example specialty for the Knowledge proficiency in ACKS…).

It always makes me happy when these little things get noticed


Another option to support the "farmboy to unstoppable" progression of the class would be to change the scaling-rate on abilities and HP. For example: start with d4 HD, which upgrades to d6 at 4th, d8 at 7th, d10 at 10th, and d12 at 13th? (with die-size changes retroactively changing previous dice as well). That averages out close to a d8/level across the entire level range (for two class-points and 1kxp), but scales nonlinearly instead of linearly. Suffering the d4 at low levels is the cost of being able to exceed d8 at high levels (granted, you run into the classical "quadratic wizard" problem, but demihumans with their level limits and front-loading already pose similar problems). Not necessarily a good idea, but something to kick around (I'm a little drunk at the moment).


IMO a d4 hd melee class is not a playable character. (I don't consider thieves a melee class because they do not engage in melee; they backstab someone and either kill them/force them to flee, or they lose the fight.) I feel like I don't really like the adjusted hit die mechanic in general, because it leads to strange massive power spikes (a 4th level character going from d4 to d6 HD gains on average almost as many hit points as they gained in their entire career to that point; they would have had an average of 9 hp at 3rd level, then reaching 4th brings them up to 6 + 3.5 + 3.5 + 3.5 = 16.5, almost double what they had at 3rd level). It also brings up the potential swinginess of rerolling your entire HP pool, or the complicated math required if you want to maintain your distance from average on each roll (not to mention needing to remember every HP roll you've ever made if you go that route). [/quote]

My original comment got ate up, but it boiled down to this: why not just add 1 HP per existing level when the hit die steps up, rather than go through fiddly math, since 1 HP is the average difference between rolls on each die type?


My current thought process:

  1. The Chosen is built as a Fighter (HD 2, Fighting 2), but with tradeoffs to reduce starting weapons and armor to peasant implements and leather armor.
  2. At 1st level, class powers include some ample number of Fate Points or luck benefits to help the character survive.
  3. Starting at 2nd level, and each level thereafter, the Chosen gains the ability to choose from a new class power, that might be weapon training, armor training, various proficiencies, etc.
  4. The Chosen has beastman-like "paths" he can go down to learn eldritch magic or ceremonial magic if desired.

That allows us to simulate a pure fighter-type chosen, a variety of variant chosens based on selected class powers over time, and the various hybrids of magic-using chosen. 

Open question is whether the Chosen should be human or nobiran.


[/quote] I'm in favor of human, just for the zero-to-hero feel.

One thought I had was to start the Chosen off as HD 0, Fight 2, with weapons and armor traded down to Restricted. This gives 6 Custom Powers and 2 Build Points in reserve. 5 of the CPs can be traded to get 1 CP each at levels 2-6 and 8-12. The last can be traded for 2 CPs at level 7. One CP at level 7 can then be traded for one each at 9 and 13, and one at 9 for one each at 10 and 14, giving 1 CP each for levels 2-9 and 11-14 and 2 at level 10. The BPs become CPs at level 1 (stay with me here), so we have a class that gains 2 powers at levels 1 and 10 and 1 power every other level, for a total of 16 powers. These powers can be spent on the following:
HD boost (4: from d4-d6, d6-d8, d8-d10, d10-d12)
Armor boost (3: from Restricted to Narrow to Broad to Unrestricted)
Weapon boost (ditto)
Arcane magic (6: 1 to cast each spell level as a Mage of the same level)
Divine magic (5: 1 to cast each spell level as a Cleric of the same level)
Thief skills (10: no access to Backstab)
This gives a total of 31 powers to select from with the 16 powers they gain, and makes it possible to go with a completely non-caster build or with a pseudo-Wonderworker that eventually gains full Arcane and Divine casting.

Still results in ‘hey I gained one level and doubled my HP!’, which I think is an issue for playability.

I’d be much more ok with it if it didn’t involve starting at d4 to d12; if you start at d6 and get +1 hp per level, once, to bring you to d8 average, that doesn’t have the same kind of problems. I’m not sure of the point, though, since all it does is increase the variance in leveling; level 1 characters are already weak, you don’t need to be ‘extremely weak, even for a level 1 character’ for the archetype, in my opinion.

Whoa, something has gone rather strange here, probably due to the thread-mirroring… my previous post appears to have disappeared, but then I quoted myself, and spoke from what seems to be Alex’s perspective.

In any case, reposting that I think Nobiran makes a lot of sense, since royal/divine lineage is common in Chosen One myths, combined with peasant upbringing as a cover story to protect the infant from the forces of darkness.

I like Alex idea. I prefer human with some hefty requirement.

relevant SMBC comic