This is where we're going to talk about playtests. Huzzah.
Playtest 1: March 23, 2008
Started with character creation. A defender, einhander, wizard, and crafter (?) were rolled.
Wizard was given spells from the 4e pregen wizard. No other class was given class features.
Starting cash is determined to be 50g for non-casters, 25g for casters. 50g seems to be a reasonable amount.
All characters were given "unlimited" money to purchase equipment, with the craft DCs being the limiting factor.
The characters then fought each other using d20 standard init and no facing. The defender won.
After, another character (priest) was generated. Priest was given a small selection of prayers from 4e pregen cleric.
Defender, priest, and wizard were used in combat against two goblins and a wind sprite. Combat used Journey init and facing. Combat lasted 66 ticks, with the PCs succeeding.
- Ability scores were built with three silos: 18, 14, 10. This seemed to work out relatively well.
- Defender base damage needs to be average as opposed to poor.
- Craft DCs need to be worked on. As it stands, it seems rather easy to break the system. A PC built to craft can easily abuse the system at 1st-level.
- Heavy armor needs to be finetuned in terms of WT, as it screwed the defender in the scaling init (+18 for a standard or move, whereas the wizard was getting +8 and the monsters +7 to +9).
- 4e monsters seem to convert rather nicely into the system, though the attack rolls seemed swingy.
- HP amounts seem about right.
- Character creation is a rather intensive affair, primarily due to having to generate equipment. This will only be worsened when weapons are done.
- Armor and shield HP seem to be working out acceptably. More extensive playtests will be required, though, to ensure they're right.
- Trauma seems to be working fine. More extensive playtests will be required to ensure that it's working as intended, though.
- Facing did not seem to exacerbate time required for combats.
- Calculating scaling initiative was mildly time-consuming, but once the DM figured out that he needed the WT and SPD of all characters, not just the monsters, it went a lot smoother. Time delays for this were not extensive towards the end of the combat.
- Scaling initiative has a lot of "fiddly bits," what with having to track dodge attempts. Also, there seems to be some disconnect between dodge defense and reflex saves - you can only dodge so many times, but can reflex save infinitely? These seem conceptually similar, and so this may need some examination.
- 5-foot steps were determined to be a +2 ATB action. This was sometimes not noticed, though it sometimes did matter.
Playtest 2: May 9, 2008
Generated an einhander, at levels 1, 5, and 7.
Made estimations regarding weapon costs and wealth gains, giving armor and weapon each one enhancement at 5, which was kept at 7.
Einhander was not given any talents or feats. 1st-level version was given Power Attack, while the 5th- and 7th-level versions went into the Flurry tree (as that is all that is written at present).
Einhander was thrown at two 4e creatures of equal level at each level, no adjustments. 4e monsters were given a SPD equal to their base DEX modifier, and a WT that seemed appropriate. Genuine creatures (not humanoids) were given a WT of 0, since they don't use equipment.
Noticed issues with flurry and sweeping strikes being broken in conjunction with each other (went from one attack at +10 to four attacks at +8), so fixed after first 5th-level combat.
Einhander won one 1st- and one 5th-level combat. Lost two 7th- and two 1st-level combats, though was generally able to take down one other combatant.
Most combats lasted between 30 and 60 ticks. First combat lasted 132. Lower-level combats seemed to last longer (132 for the first at 1st-level, 72 for the second). The 7th-level combats lasted fewer ticks (30 or so), though that may (again) be due to actual monsters going absurdly fast (fight included a griffon, which went every 5 ticks and made two attacks as a standard action).
- The scaling initiative seems pretty solid. Monsters may pose an issue in which they go really fast due to having no weight (since they don't use equipment), but that may be a feature: monsters in Journey would be dangerous, and rightfully so.
- Actions in the init system need to be more clearly defined, as does when the active character's turn ends. Facing elements, in particular, need to be addressed.
- Only when one creature in the combat is going much faster than another does the creature seem to be going a lot more. In a fight that included a creature going every 9 ticks and the einhander (going every 12), it took a few "rounds" for the 9-SPD creature to go twice before the einhander.
- The einhander seems about balanced. In a one-on-one fight, the einhander would probably win against most 4e creatures, but in a one-on-two the einhander is pretty much guaranteed to lose (though there is a chance for success).
- The einhander was not tested against ranged combatants. It is probable that an einhander would lose in such a situation, regardless of odds (one-on-one or one-on-two).
- Weapon token gain for the einhander may be a little too intense, and the cap on tokens may be too low.
- Parry needs to be worked out. As it stands, there is little point in the einhander parrying; most parry successes were due to Luck Points being spent.
- Given the DPR being dished out, the second wind mechanic may need retooling; right now, the HP gained is almost guaranteed to be immediately lost.
Playtest 3: March 21, 2009
- Base skill checks should not be affected by wound tokens, otherwise it is a "dick in everyone's ass." -- Amber
- Armor takes all damage when attack roll fails to overcome AV.
- Amber says character sheets need to be big lists, "huge fucking lists," for tracking of XPs.
- When I say "damage save," I mean health check.
- When you train, you do not train specials, but the disciplines they come from instead (unless they are discipline-less specials).
- Standing up from prone is a short physical action.
- "Effective" skill increases due to weapon qualities do not increase average and such for purposes of XP gains.
- Success is unnecessary for XP - you can learn from failure.
- Do not apply wound tokens until end of the event. An event being defined as having an initiator; thus, falling to 0 hp is an event, since the game forces a check on you (and thus you have to roll against all the wound tokens you just suffered in the tick, *including* the wound for hitting 0, as that is part of the attack event).
...the journey of a thousand miles...
...begins beneath your feet...