Steve Jackson Games - Site Navigation
Home General Info Follow Us Search Illuminator Store Forums What's New Other Games Ogre GURPS Munchkin Our Games: Home

Go Back   Steve Jackson Games Forums > Roleplaying > The Fantasy Trip

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 06-13-2018, 07:05 PM   #11
Skarg
 
Join Date: May 2015
Default Re: Staffs and Quarterstaff talent.

The rules:

A staff can be a wand. It still does 1d damage.

A staff can be a quarterstaff. If the wizard has the Quarterstaff talent, it does 1d+2 damage.

A staff of power does 2d damage.

The last inside page of the (non-Steve-Jackson) Codex also says a Staff can be cast on a quarterstaff and it should do 2d damage (presumably only if the wizard uses it with the Quarterstaff talent). They didn't consider Staff of Power on a quarterstaff.

Personally, I think it makes sense that a quarterstaff could be used on staff to do more damage than a staff does. Clearly the staff does magical damage since even a wand staff does 1d. I also quite like Rick's logic of having them each do separate damage. What I don't like is how powerful it becomes against unarmored opponents - ST 11, Staff and Quarterstaff (1x2 talent points for a wizard) gives 1d + (1d +2), which against an unarmored foe is like 2d+2, the damage of a ST 14 great hammer. I prefer the Codex's 2d for balance reasons, but Rick's version for logic reasons.

Taken further, the Staff spell says it works on any piece of wood. I could see it being used on a wood spear, or a wooden maul... again I think either way would be fine to me, either adding a separate 1d that armor subtracts from too, or giving a +1 damage or +1 position-shift up the usual damage sequence.
Skarg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-13-2018, 07:55 PM   #12
tbeard1999
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Tyler, Texas
Default Re: Staffs and Quarterstaff talent.

Occam’s Razor, I.e, one or the other.

I always ruled that the Wizard’s staff did its damage from magic (which is why no combat talent was required) and had to be wielded a certain way to be effective. (This means that a wizard’s staff can damage monsters that can only be harmed by magic weapons).

So a wizard using the quarterstaff talent can treat his staff as an ordinary quarterstaff doing ordinary damage OR he can use it as a normal wizard’s staff. But not both.

If you buff the staff too much, you wind up with wizards being disproportionately effective in combat. Not really my conception of a wizard.
tbeard1999 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-13-2018, 08:26 PM   #13
Rick_Smith
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Coquitlam B.C.
Default Occam's razor - just play the game as written.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tbeard1999 View Post
Occamís Razor, I.e, one or the other.

I always ruled that the Wizardís staff did its damage from magic (which is why no combat talent was required) and had to be wielded a certain way to be effective. (This means that a wizardís staff can damage monsters that can only be harmed by magic weapons).

So a wizard using the quarterstaff talent can treat his staff as an ordinary quarterstaff doing ordinary damage OR he can use it as a normal wizardís staff. But not both.

If you buff the staff too much, you wind up with wizards being disproportionately effective in combat. Not really my conception of a wizard.
Hi everyone, Ty.
That is simpler???

If I have a Staff with staff spell, cast on a quarterstaff sized piece of wood, and I hit you I do 1 die of damage.

If I have a Quarterstaff and the needed talent, and I hit for 1d+2 damage.

If I have the spell AND the talents and I strike I can either lose the 1d+2 damage OR I can lose the 1 die damage? This is in punishment of spending extra memory / experience for getting both?

Surely the simplest ruling is that both attacks work. As two different types of damage, the armor protects against both.

It seems to me that Occam's razor cuts straightest with this logic.

***

You keep ignoring the TFT Codex. Wouldn't Occam's razor suggest that the simplest thing to do, is to play the game as written, and use the rule given in the FAQ in the Codex?

I changed that rule, because I thought my rule was considerably more logical, and was more interesting tactically.

***

As for buffing the wizard too much, remember they spent an extra two memory (or a bunch of experience points now), to get that talent. If a wizard spends the effort to become a more powerful fighter in combat, wouldn't Occam's razor suggest that he or she should be rewarded?

My rules help the wizard against low armoured spear carriers, but has little effect against tough opponents and bosses. Which is fine, I don't mind my players knocking down the mooks faster. But when fighting a tough opponent with Leather, Large Shield, Warrior how much is that wizard doing to do? You will want to have a fighter handy. (Or the wizard can just spend 8 fatigue ST and do 8d-8 with a Fireball.)

Warm regards, Rick.
Rick_Smith is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-14-2018, 04:39 AM   #14
Chris Rice
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: London Uk, but originally from Scotland
Default Re: Staffs and Quarterstaff talent.

I never had the Codex, just the rulebooks, so I was never aware of this extra damage issue. Like Ty, I played that the Wizards staff or Wand did "magical damage"; it didn't need to be swung like a club, a mere touch was enough to deliver the damage. I also allowed it to cause damage to creatures that couldn't be harmed by normal weapons. That made the Wizards staff useful enough in my view.
Chris Rice is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 06-14-2018, 08:47 AM   #15
tbeard1999
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Tyler, Texas
Default Re: Occam's razor - just play the game as written.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick_Smith View Post
Hi everyone, Ty.
That is simpler???

If I have a Staff with staff spell, cast on a quarterstaff sized piece of wood, and I hit you I do 1 die of damage.

If I have a Quarterstaff and the needed talent, and I hit for 1d+2 damage.

If I have the spell AND the talents and I strike I can either lose the 1d+2 damage OR I can lose the 1 die damage? This is in punishment of spending extra memory / experience for getting both?

Surely the simplest ruling is that both attacks work. As two different types of damage, the armor protects against both.

It seems to me that Occam's razor cuts straightest with this logic.

***

You keep ignoring the TFT Codex. Wouldn't Occam's razor suggest that the simplest thing to do, is to play the game as written, and use the rule given in the FAQ in the Codex?

I changed that rule, because I thought my rule was considerably more logical, and was more interesting tactically.

***

As for buffing the wizard too much, remember they spent an extra two memory (or a bunch of experience points now), to get that talent. If a wizard spends the effort to become a more powerful fighter in combat, wouldn't Occam's razor suggest that he or she should be rewarded?
It depends on your conception of Wizards and whether you like Wizards who, for a mere 2 IQ points, can do more damage than a typical swordsman of similar ST.

I don’t like that.

Occam’s razor was applicable to the rule itself not whether it was a good idea. Nor do I think that the issue is particularly ambiguous. There’s nothing in the rules to suggest that a wizard’s staff and the quarterstaff should be treated the same.
tbeard1999 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-14-2018, 09:56 AM   #16
Rick_Smith
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Coquitlam B.C.
Default Re: Occam's razor - just play the game as written.

Hi Ty, everyone.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tbeard1999 View Post
It depends on your conception of Wizards and whether you like Wizards who, for a mere 2 IQ points, can do more damage than a typical swordsman of similar ST.

I don’t like that.
Then you should prefer my rules to the ones in the Codex. I feel that my rule is better, than the official rules. They make wizards less powerful as fighters when they take the Staff + Quarterstaff combo. (At least against enemies with typical armor - say cloth armor and a large shield or heavier.) When I used the Codex rules, a lot of wizards took this combo. When I introduced my version, the number of wizards taking the combo gradually decreased, until it is now fairly rare.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tbeard1999 View Post
Occam’s razor was applicable to the rule itself not whether it was a good idea. Nor do I think that the issue is particularly ambiguous. There’s nothing in the rules to suggest that a wizard’s staff and the quarterstaff should be treated the same.
I don't understand what you are saying in your first sentence.

I have not argued that a Staff and a quarterstaff are the same. I have argued that the TFT rules allow you to cast the Staff spell on a quarterstaff. Given that that IS allowed, logic suggests that there should be a bonus.

Nor is that any great stretch, since the two working together is actually in the official rules. Please see the FAQ in the Codex on page: G.SPELL 2.

***

I do not think that you have said that this bonus is illogical. I think you are saying that you prefer that it does not work that way to keep strong wizards, doing less damage than equally strong fighters.

That is fine. I have no argument with that preference. In fact, my new rule was designed to tone down the damage done by this combo.

I find you often use rhetorical / debating tricks which kinda sets me off. Rather than arguing my points, you dismissed my arguments by ignoring most of them, and invoking Occam's razor (I think) in order to sound wise. You can hardly object if I Occam's razor back at you.

***

SUMMARY:

Given that several people on this forum have said that this synergy is logical; given that you have not argued that the bonus is illogical; and given that Metagaming got enough questions about it to make an official ruling about it; and given that their ruling, in fact, DID give a bonus for using the Staff + Quarter Staff...

Well, I can not imagine why you object to my suggestion that the rule be written clearly in the new TFT.

Which was, in fact, what I've asked for.

Warm Regards, Rick.

Last edited by Rick_Smith; 06-14-2018 at 11:06 AM.
Rick_Smith is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-14-2018, 05:57 PM   #17
JLV
 
JLV's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Far northern California
Default Re: Staffs and Quarterstaff talent.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick_Smith View Post
Hi all, JLV.
I remind you that the Staff spell and the Quarterstaff talent IS in the basic TFT. Please see the FAQ page G.SPELL 2, in the Fantasy Master's Codex. They had 8 pages of answers to poorly defined parts of the rules, and I found the FAQ the most useful part of that product.

And all I asked was that this question be addressed in the rules. Do you WANT TFT to be patched by 8 pages of errata a year later? Geez.

Regards, Rick.
Huh? Please re-read my comment. I said absolutely nothing about the specific issue you two were debating, instead simply pointing out that many of us have been playing TFT for so long and have "house-ruled" so much, that we frequently allude to things which are not part of the Rules as Written. I believe we should avoid that wherever and whenever possible, since all it does is engender confusion. Is this somehow a controversial opinion to hold? And what does it have to do with your discussion on Staff versus Quarterstaff and their additive properties (or lack thereof)?
JLV is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-14-2018, 06:00 PM   #18
JLV
 
JLV's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Far northern California
Default Re: Staffs and Quarterstaff talent.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tbeard1999 View Post
Occamís Razor, I.e, one or the other.

I always ruled that the Wizardís staff did its damage from magic (which is why no combat talent was required) and had to be wielded a certain way to be effective. (This means that a wizardís staff can damage monsters that can only be harmed by magic weapons).

So a wizard using the quarterstaff talent can treat his staff as an ordinary quarterstaff doing ordinary damage OR he can use it as a normal wizardís staff. But not both.

If you buff the staff too much, you wind up with wizards being disproportionately effective in combat. Not really my conception of a wizard.
Frankly, this is the best solution to the issue that I've read here -- possibly because that was always the way we played it.
JLV is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-14-2018, 06:22 PM   #19
tbeard1999
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Tyler, Texas
Default Re: Occam's razor - just play the game as written.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick_Smith View Post

That is fine. I have no argument with that preference. In fact, my new rule was designed to tone down the damage done by this combo.
Except that the TFT rules do not create any such “combo”. There’s nothing in the 3 TFT books to indicate that wizard staffs and quarterstaffs are the same. And the quarterstaff talent clearly states that it is the talent of using the quarterstaff, not the wizard’s staff.

Your rule introduces a special set of combat rules that address a problem that doesn’t exist in the 3 TFT books.

I do not consider the Codex to be authoritative. Even if I did, I’d simply ignore the Codex on this point because it’s a stupid rule.

Quote:
I find you often use rhetorical / debating tricks which kinda sets me off. Rather than arguing my points, you dismissed my arguments by ignoring most of them, and invoking Occam's razor (I think) in order to sound wise?
I think it takes more than knowing what Occam’s razor means to be “wise”.

Anyhow, I don’t always have time or energy to respond to every minor point that someone posts. I think that I’ve made my position clear - the TFT rules do not state that the Quarterstaff talent affects how a Wizard uses a wizard’s staff. So there is no ambiguity to “correct”.


Quote:
You can hardly object if I Occam's razor back at you.
Couldn’t care less. However, you might want to consider being less defensive when your rules are questioned. All of us here have been playing TFT for a very long time - likely just as long as you. You may think your rules are the greatest ever - and some may well be. But others may reasonably disagree.

Quote:
Given that several people on this forum have said that this synergy is logical; given that you have not argued that the bonus is illogical
It will take more than invoking “logic” to rationalize a rule that is fiddly and unbalances a game.

If you want ST 11 wizards to be able to deal 2+2 damage in melee combat, fine. I don’t. I prefer for melee combat to generally be the province of fighters.

Just write a special rule and be done with it. Don’t fabricate a non-existent ambiguity to rationalize it though.

Quote:
Well, I can not imagine why you object to my suggestion that the rule be written clearly in the new TFT.

Which was, in fact, what I've asked for.

Warm Regards, Rick.
It seemed to me that you were alleging an ambiguity exists; an ambiguity that I cannot find in the 3 TFT books or in the microgames.

Then, you proposed a fix that would allow ST11 wizards to do up to 2+2 damage in melee combat, which seems absurd to me. Your “it’s treated as two hits” rule seems fiddly to me as well.

Against an unarmored target, your rule would have a ST11 wizard doing 9pts of damage on average. That’s 50% more than a ST11 fighter with a short sword (6pts on average). And almost as much damage on average as a ST14 fighter with a 2 handed sword (9 pts of damage vs 9.5 pts) and more than a ST13 fighter with a bastard sword, which does 8 or 8.5 pts of damage on average.

Against a target in cloth armor, the ST 11 wizard will average 7 points of points of damage; that’s 40% more than a ST11 fighter with a short sword (5 pts). It’s equal to a ST13 fighter using a one handed bastard sword.

Against a target in leather armor, the wizard will average 5 1/3 points of damage - 33% more than a ST11 fighter with a short sword (4 pts). And slightly more than a ST 12 fighter using a broadsword, which averages 5 points.

Against chainmail, your wizard would average 3.5 points of damage. (1d-3 will average 1 point damage, since the minimum amount of damage is 0*; 1d-1 will average 2.5 points of damage). That’s better than a ST11 fighter with a short sword (which averages 3 points of damage).

Against half plate, the wizard would average 1.5 points of damage. The fighter with a short sword would average 2 points of damage.

So...your rule would allow a Wizard to completely outclass a swordsman of equal ST until fighting a target in chain or better. Even then, the Wizard is close.

And wouldn’t your “logical” rule mean that a wizard who has Ax/Mace gets to cast his staff spell on a mace and get the same benefit (I.e., a 1d wizard’s staff hit, followed by a 2d-1 mace hit)? What about spears? Nunchuks? Clubs? Javelins? They are all wooden, nonmetallic hand weapons.

I object to your rule for multiple reasons. It is offered to resolve a non-existent ambiguity. It unbalances the game by making ST11 Wizards able to outclass ST11 fighters in many, if not most combat situations. And it does not comport with the TFT conception of Wizards (or mine for that matter).

And even if the ambiguity exists, the obvious and simple solution is to treat wizard staffs and quarter staffs as not the same. That’s simple, logical and doesn’t unbalance the game in favor of wizards.

Hopefully, this clarifies why I object to your rule.


*1 die averages 3.5 points of damage. 1d-1 averages 2.5 points of damage. But 1d-2 averages 1 2/3 points of damage, not 1.5 as might be expected. The reason is that 1.5 is be the mathematical average if negative damage were possible. Since 0 is the least amount of damage, the mathematical average is too low. 1d-3 averages 1 point of damage. 1d-4 averages 0.5 points of damage. 1d-5 averages 1/6 point of damage.

Last edited by tbeard1999; 06-14-2018 at 08:27 PM.
tbeard1999 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-14-2018, 08:43 PM   #20
Rick_Smith
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Coquitlam B.C.
Default Re: Staffs and Quarterstaff talent.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JLV View Post
Huh? Please re-read my comment. ...
Hi JLV,
Sorry, I thought I was talking to Ty. Not paying enough attention.

Warm regards, Rick.
Rick_Smith is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
damage, nerf, quarter staff, staff, staff spell

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Fnords are Off
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 04:28 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.