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Originally Posted by Maximuuus
But this will still devalue a lot of things that grants advantage in DnD.

What happen today ? Highground and you does not care being targetted, with disadvantage you're god.
What will happen if advantage for highground is kept ? Highground but each turn we'll go away of the cliff to break the ennemy's lign of sight. New tedious tactics.

Whatever : still running for highground because it gives you the best and necessary bonus not to miss too often (even if your suggestion is obviously less broken than now).

Personally, I'm still in the camp that I want advantage/disadvantage from verticality removed completely. I thought MrFuji's proposal was fun to think about and I wanted to share my perspective on that. If those thoughts happen to make combat better on release, I'll be happy.

Originally Posted by Maximuuus
Originally Posted by Dragonsnooz
According to me the real question is "If the dices have been changed twice because players missing attacks might be anti-fun, then why isn't the ennemy's AC reduced?"
That's the only goal of ennemie's AC. Lower AC wouldn't have ANY consequences except that we'll miss less often. If missing is the problem just reduce the AC... Problem solved.
Am I wrong ? Is there something I'm not thinking of related to AC ?
The truest response to this is that changing enemy AC is a lever to control on how difficult the DM wants the encounter to be.
High ground advantage and low ground disadvantage affect both the player and enemies adding a chaotic factor (or distortionary, variable factor) to combat design. Resulting in lop-sided combat outcomes. (with no change to aggregate difficulty).

When we're talking about AC we are talking about survivability so in conjunction with HP we can deduce a statistic of "turns-to-kill". High ground advantage reduces turns-to-kill and low ground disadvantage increases turns-to-kill.

AC adjustments are a good thing for DMs to consider as they are static, and there are spells to counter high AC enemies (crowd control or saving-throw damage). It's something the player can react to on the fly. Lowering AC can bring in normally tougher enemies to make the situation more immersive or exciting. Or, as brought up before with analyzing goblin stats, you can make a more consistent turn-to-kill by lowering AC and increasing HP.

Verticality is different, a player will enter a fight and see enemies on high ground and their characters on the low ground and rationalize "forget this, I'll reload and reposition". Or maybe, "Yeah I'll spend several turns focused on moving my characters around and chugging potions". Neither of which are engaging decisions. Again this did not impact difficulty but directly affects how the player spends their time. (The mechanic is essentially a chore for the player, just as exciting as washing dishes).

Originally Posted by Maximuuus
- Advantages in BG3 devalue conditions, spells,..

- Advantage/disadvantage should stay an "advanced" technique...

- Giving the best bonuses just by going higher or going behind just don't allow anything interresting for higher difficulty levels...?
We agree on these for the most part and have had fruitful discussions on this in the past.
smile

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Originally Posted by Maximuuus
According to me the real question is "If the dices have been changed twice because players missing attacks might be anti-fun, then why isn't the ennemy's AC reduced?"
That's the only goal of ennemie's AC. Lower AC wouldn't have any consequences except that we'll miss less often. They have to know what they want : if missing is the main problem then they could just reduce the AC... Problem solved.
Am I wrong ? Is there something I'm not thinking about related to AC ?

Lower AC does have another, major consequence: Lowering AC makes it easier to hit enemies with things which target their AC, but it does not affect things which require enemies to make saving throws to avoid or reduce the damage. The major consequence is that this devalues saving-throw attacks, and makes AC attacks more attractive. This upsets the balance between AC and Saving Throws.

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Originally Posted by Stabbey
Originally Posted by Maximuuus
According to me the real question is "If the dices have been changed twice because players missing attacks might be anti-fun, then why isn't the ennemy's AC reduced?"
That's the only goal of ennemie's AC. Lower AC wouldn't have any consequences except that we'll miss less often. They have to know what they want : if missing is the main problem then they could just reduce the AC... Problem solved.
Am I wrong ? Is there something I'm not thinking about related to AC ?

Lower AC does have another, major consequence: Lowering AC makes it easier to hit enemies with things which target their AC, but it does not affect things which require enemies to make saving throws to avoid or reduce the damage. The major consequence is that this devalues saving-throw attacks, and makes AC attacks more attractive. This upsets the balance between AC and Saving Throws.

If I'm not wrong doesn't giving easy advantage reinforce the problem even more than reducing the AC by (let's say) 1 or 2 points ?
On the other hand I noticed that they increased the dexterity of many creatures in the game compared to the MM, which probably increase the issue you raised.

Serious question : In the PnP, aren't the spells that targets AC used less often at higher level when characters have higher level and more powerfull spells that require a ST ? It's something Saito brought in another thread and I found interresting to think about (as the non PnP player I am).

Originally Posted by Dragonsnooz
The truest response to this is that changing enemy AC is a lever to control on how difficult the DM wants the encounter to be.
High ground advantage and low ground disadvantage affect both the player and enemies adding a chaotic factor (or distortionary, variable factor) to combat design. Resulting in lop-sided combat outcomes. (with no change to aggregate difficulty).

When we're talking about AC we are talking about survivability so in conjunction with HP we can deduce a statistic of "turns-to-kill". High ground advantage reduces turns-to-kill and low ground disadvantage increases turns-to-kill.

AC adjustments are a good thing for DMs to consider as they are static, and there are spells to counter high AC enemies (crowd control or saving-throw damage). It's something the player can react to on the fly. Lowering AC can bring in normally tougher enemies to make the situation more immersive or exciting. Or, as brought up before with analyzing goblin stats, you can make a more consistent turn-to-kill by lowering AC and increasing HP.

Verticality is different, a player will enter a fight and see enemies on high ground and their characters on the low ground and rationalize "forget this, I'll reload and reposition". Or maybe, "Yeah I'll spend several turns focused on moving my characters around and chugging potions". Neither of which are engaging decisions. Again this did not impact difficulty but directly affects how the player spends their time. (The mechanic is essentially a chore for the player, just as exciting as washing dishes).

Thx for this. It gaves me more things to think about. What else could I do than "thinking" about BG3 smile
I was exactly thinking about HP bloat that should be "necessary" if you reduced the AC. But I guess it's not the only solution because it also has (I think I can say "small") consequences.

Last edited by Maximuuus; 14/06/21 08:01 PM.
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If getting advantage stays as easy as it is now, "reckless attacks" for barbarians will be completely redundant.

....amongst many other abilities and spells.

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@DragonSnooz
I'm hesitant to argue for Backstab with finesse weapons only; Dex doesn't need to be any more overpowered relative to strength than it already is. Dex fighters would also benefit from this, not just rogues and dex rangers. My idea was to have some version of this feat for Str too (Choose +1 to Dex or Str, plus +to-hit effects on a backstab).

I like your idea that to get advantage, there can't be enemies within 30 feet. An alternate suggestion is to repurpose Tasha's "Take Aim" rogue bonus action ability, where you spend a bonus action to take aim and can't do any movement during that turn. This would ensure that anyone who wants to take advantage of high ground has to start and end their turn on the cliff edge, visible to all enemeies.

________________________________________________________________

As other posters have mentioned, increasing characters' Proficiency Bonuses would probably be better than changing enemy AC since proficiency governs to-hit attack rolls AND spell/ability Saving Throws.

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Originally Posted by Maximuuus
If I'm not wrong doesn't giving easy advantage reinforce the problem even more than reducing the AC by (let's say) 1 or 2 points ?
On the other hand I noticed that they increased the dexterity of many creatures in the game compared to the MM, which probably increase the issue you raised.

Serious question : In the PnP, aren't the spells that targets AC used less often at higher level when characters have higher level and more powerfull spells that require a ST ? It's something Saito brought in another thread and I found interresting to think about (as the non PnP player I am).

Both advantage and AC adjusting are contributors to that problem.

Spells/attacks which target saving throws might be more common at higher levels, but not all saving throws are equal. Lots of monsters have high CON saving throws, but not a lot have high INT or CHA saving throws.

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Originally Posted by Maximuuus
Serious question : In the PnP, aren't the spells that targets AC used less often at higher level when characters have higher level and more powerfull spells that require a ST ? It's something Saito brought in another thread and I found interresting to think about (as the non PnP player I am).

I mostly brought that up because later spells that target saving throws will inflict half damage if an enemy succeeds the saving throw against it. Spells that target enemy AC do not have a similar function. As the field effects have already taught us, having sources of guaranteed damage is *powerful* as hell, especially if they are also AoE effects. This type of principle is why spells like Fireball and Lightning Bolt are so feared (aside from those two spells inflicting more damage than other level 3 spells for 'tradition' reasons from the earlier DnD editions). Subsequently it's also going to be why having proper counterspells is going to be extremely crucial.

When Bard is released, pick up the Shatter spell. That's one of the few saving throw spells that inflicts half damage available in the EA right now (and the only ranged AoE saving throw spell right now IIRC), and watch as entire packs of enemies melt under it. My Bard mod playthrough with Gale and Wyll also using Shatter basically melted fights with big packs of enemies with lower HP.

(Bards also get an exclusive 1st level spell called Dissonant Whispers that also targets a saving throw, though it is a single target spell. Currently, if an enemy fails the saving throw in BG3, they are also frightened. The tabletop variant forces them to immediately spend their reaction trying to get away from the Bard instead.)

I don't believe Heat Metal is in BG3 yet either, but it most likely will be eventually, once item tags are sorted out. It's an extremely unique 2nd level concentration spell available to Bards and Druids that inflicts guaranteed fire damage against enemies using metal equipment, and you can spend a bonus action each turn to cause that damage again. It additionally forces enemy attacks to have disadvantage until the effect ends, either by the caster losing concentration or the target dropping the affected equipment (and the spell forces them to do so if possible unless they pass a constitution saving throw - but even if they succeed to retain their equipment, they still take full damage from the spell itself). Though 'dropping equipment' only realistically applies if weapons, shields, or accessories are targeted, which is a great way to disarm an enemy. If your main goal is damage and perpetual disadvantage, you target armor instead.

Last edited by Saito Hikari; 15/06/21 07:48 PM.
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Make them optional.

Seriously I read all this words about immersivity and so on the I read complains like this.

Just make some web search about snipers and height, or think about history and middle age castles and how they have turrets to fire arrows to the invading forces. How can any one says that there is no advantage with heights or disadvantage being downside a enemy?

To me is obvious. From a higher point I almost have a better field vision while the enemy will have difficulties in locating my position, projectiles will have a slight more speed of impact cause of the difference of height, while those thrown from below will have a slightly less speed of impact (these are basic physic knowledge).

Thus again how does height doesn't add as advantage factor?

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I think you need to be careful to not confuse height and cover.

When you have the sun in your back and are on top of a building hiding behind a small wall on the roof, like a sniper would do, then you are hard to spot (and to hit). But that is not due to height (alone), but mostly because of the other factors mentioned. So mostly you can attribute that to cover, not height.

Look at most combat situations in BG3.
Someone is standing at the top of stairs (2m high, 5m away), the other person at the bottom. Both persons see the other in full view. Now imagine both aiming at each other. Why would have the person on top of the stairs have more than double higher chance of hitting then the person on the lower ground?

Height is already an advantage in and of itself - melee fighters will have a hard time getting to you, most of the time.

So no need - imho - to give characters/npcs the DnD gameplay rule/mechanic called "Advantage". Because a ranged attacker does already have the advantage of being in an elevated position.

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All I know is, I replayed the harpy fight recently, and it went ridiculously bad because they kept flying higher and getting height advantage and beating the crap out of my party.

Then,, while writing the Afflicted story, I played with a party of 6 level 3 characters, Gale, Wyll, and 4 Custom using Tabletop, 5e rules, etc. And legit harpy stats. It was not nearly as difficult, BUT they nearly took out my female Drow Battlemaster and my Beastmaster Gith and Gale. It was still a fairly tough battle that could have gone south with better rolls on my part for the harpies. The only variant rule used was flanking.

The point is, 6 party members. No height advantage. No homebrew. Normal stats. 4 harpies. It was a fun battle and wasn't frustrating because the players could actually hit and weren't just getting the crap beat put of them by harpies with advantage.

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Originally Posted by Maximuuus
Serious question : In the PnP, aren't the spells that targets AC used less often at higher level when characters have higher level and more powerfull spells that require a ST ? It's something Saito brought in another thread and I found interresting to think about (as the non PnP player I am).

Just to add some background information to this: In the Sorcerer spell list, there are a grand total of 8 levelled spells that use attack rolls. Eight. This is to the point that Spell Sniper, usually a good feat for casters, is actually a pretty big trap for Sorcs, unless you're picking those exact spells. If you expand the list to include all arcane caster spell lists (wizard, warlock, bard etc.) that total jumps to 14. Fourteen. If you expand to include ALL class spells, you have 24. Out of over 520 spells. Conversely of that same 520, there are 197 that use saving throws. Just absorb that for a moment. The VAST majority of casters' offence, CC and debuff spells are all saving throws, which are greatly devalued and harder to succeed with in the current BG3 system.

Of that 520, 46 are cantrips: there are 12 cantrips that rely on attack rolls and 14 (damage dealing; discounting light and gust) cantrips that use saving throws.

I'm not seeking to argue a point specifically, just putting the information forward for people the think on.

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Originally Posted by Niara
Originally Posted by Maximuuus
Serious question : In the PnP, aren't the spells that targets AC used less often at higher level when characters have higher level and more powerfull spells that require a ST ? It's something Saito brought in another thread and I found interresting to think about (as the non PnP player I am).

Just to add some background information to this: In the Sorcerer spell list, there are a grand total of 8 levelled spells that use attack rolls. Eight. This is to the point that Spell Sniper, usually a good feat for casters, is actually a pretty big trap for Sorcs, unless you're picking those exact spells. If you expand the list to include all arcane caster spell lists (wizard, warlock, bard etc.) that total jumps to 14. Fourteen. If you expand to include ALL class spells, you have 24. Out of over 520 spells. Conversely of that same 520, there are 197 that use saving throws. Just absorb that for a moment. The VAST majority of casters' offence, CC and debuff spells are all saving throws, which are greatly devalued and harder to succeed with in the current BG3 system.

Of that 520, 46 are cantrips: there are 12 cantrips that rely on attack rolls and 14 (damage dealing; discounting light and gust) cantrips that use saving throws.

I'm not seeking to argue a point specifically, just putting the information forward for people the think on.

Mm, most of the offensive spell list uses saving throws, though that doesn't make attack roll spells bad at all in base 5e. Eldritch Blast is still considered one of the best cantrips in the entire game, and it targets AC.
Making saving throws worse in BG3 is one of the biggest nerfs spellcasters could ever receive.

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Originally Posted by Bufotenina
Make them optional.

People keep saying that, but they never stop to think what it would actually mean to make an option out of something.

The more options which are added, the more difficult it is to balance them properly. This is especially true for a game such as this with a completely flexible set of races and classes as the party. The amount of permutations quickly spirals into a range which makes it literally impossible to test. For proper balance, there needs to be a baseline of solid mechanics, not a bed of shifting sand.

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Originally Posted by Stabbey
Originally Posted by Bufotenina
Make them optional.

People keep saying that, but they never stop to think what it would actually mean to make an option out of something.

The more options which are added, the more difficult it is to balance them properly. This is especially true for a game such as this with a completely flexible set of races and classes as the party. The amount of permutations quickly spirals into a range which makes it literally impossible to test. For proper balance, there needs to be a baseline of solid mechanics, not a bed of shifting sand.

Exactly. Example. Drink Potion = Bonus action. Thus, Rogue Fast Hands loses its main importance. Thus, Larian created Fast Hands as Extra Bonus Action. Now, Astarion can Dash 3 TIMES, as an Action, as a Bonus and as a Fast Hands Bonus. Likewise, he can attack with Main hand and offhand twice, or he can drink 2 potions in one round and heal up easily way more than anyone else. Making cleric healers less valuable and Astarion a one man wrecking crew instead of a team member.

What should be a "You can now Dash as a Bonus or drink a potion as a Bonus" has now become a majorly OP ability thus breaking all sorts of other mechanics and so it snowballs.

And that's just 1 example of what it breaks.

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I agree that Larian's mechanics changes snowball into bigger problems.

I don't object to bonus action to drink a potion for anyone, because damage dealt is almost always greater than amount potions heal for, so potions taking a full action is not a worthwhile use of an action. It's a common house rule for a reason.

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Yeah, I know. But the point is that every rule has a good reason. The more you change rules, the more jacked up the whole game becomes.

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Generally you want to start with the base and then apply small changes, testing the water before moving big changes.

Larian started us off with huge changes.

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Yeah, honestly, I was fine with the way backstab was handled back in the day with just thieves (and assassins) being able to do it. I wonder how much this whole elevation/backstab biz is just bleedover from div2? I can see surprise giving advantage, sure, and having a bonus for surprise when concealed or even at elevation by way of concealment but having advantage last throughout combat has broken a lot of fights in BG3 and previously.

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Good job OP and supportive forum members, we got 1/2 way there!

"Backstabbing characters no longer provides Advantage on attack."

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Originally Posted by Nezix
Good job OP and supportive forum members, we got 1/2 way there!

"Backstabbing characters no longer provides Advantage on attack."
Now they need to address height advantage and not needing any stealth check to hide with 100% reliability outside of cones of vision.


Party control in Baldur's Gate 3 is a complete mess that begs to be addressed. SAY NO TO THE TOILET CHAIN
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