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View Full Version : Statisticians! Max Char Level?

MaN
2006-12-29, 08:46 AM
A bit of homework for those forum members who revel in figuring statistical probabilities for various D&D game mechanics:

Using WOTC standards for challenge ratings for encounters, number of encounters needed to gain a level, etc is there a character level where it becomes insanely improbable to advance beyond without DM fudging? At what level will a character most likely die? What are the chances that I would think these really stupid questions deserve an answer?

Pegasos989
2006-12-29, 08:49 AM
Umm, a hundred or two levels in epic and you have pretty much killed everything in existence (including gods) that might award you exp?

Ali
2006-12-29, 05:30 PM
If you ever became so high level that you could kill almost anything you came across, why not become a deity? Then in a different campaign players could select your old super-high level character as their deity.

For example, if your character was a level 97 dwarven drunken master, he could become the dwarven god of ale.

Pegasos989
2006-12-29, 06:07 PM
Yeah. The funny thing is that if he was strong enough, he could kill all the other deities, thus becoming the only deity and having a monopol on that...

Samiam303
2006-12-29, 06:11 PM
It really just depends on the campaign. If you keep running into things at the low end of the difficulty spectrum, you could make it to god status fairly easy, whereas in a tough campaign maybe characters rarely make it to level 10.
It just completely would depend.

Thomas
2006-12-29, 06:22 PM
Ridiculously impossible premise. The only limit to maximum character level is the CR of enemies that the DM is willing to create. Calculating the odds for dying for ANY level is impossible because of literally infinite variables.

Yakk
2006-12-29, 06:32 PM
RAW doesn't say what your death chance should be from a conflict. It says what fraction of your character's resources you should consume from a fight, on average, and gives no information about what the variance should be.

In short, your question is insufficiently specified.

Person_Man
2006-12-29, 07:58 PM
Statistician here, with an Epic Level Handbook, no less.

The Epic handbook has an Experience Point Awards scaled correctly going all the way up to 40th level/CR 40. You can always increase any monster's CR to challenge PC's effectively simply giving them class levels or additional hit dice as specified in the Monster Manual. There is no level at which PC's are most likely to die. A DM doesn't really have to fudge anything to run an Epic campaign properly.

Having said that, I've never particularly like the mechanics of Epic level class progression. In my opinion, it was very poorly done and just sorta thrown together. But that has nothing to do with the statistics of Epic level experience. In general, the campaigns I DM end some time soon after the PC's get a chance to kick some butt as 20th level characters, then we start over with new characters.

Athenodorus
2006-12-29, 08:00 PM
Do folks usually use the epic handbook for their higher level campaigns (if any!) or are there "better" houserule setups?

MaN
2006-12-30, 01:10 AM
Keep in mind these questions are from someone completely ignorant of statistics and hates doing mathematics with a passion . . .

Is there no way to calculate what the chance of failure in an encounter intended to only reduce your resources by 20%?

Gralamin
2006-12-30, 01:15 AM
Your most likely to die at level 1.

that 20% resources is the parties, and is shared between characters. A 20% resource loss does not translate into one of 5 characters dieing.

Draco Ignifer
2006-12-30, 01:20 AM
Level 84,431,566, assuming level - 8 CR gives no XP. (http://d20npcs.wikia.com/wiki/A'tuin_the_Star_Turtle)

AtomicKitKat
2006-12-30, 03:35 AM
I would personally prefer each character to only get BAB up till 20(BAB, not level, and the relevant number of attacks for that value), and the saves to be no higher than a monk of that level could attain(assuming the progression continues). Everything else remains. This would of course require that monsters also follow these rules. Epic Attack Bonus is a good idea on paper, but the "BAB/5, rounded up=number of attacks" rule needs to be tweaked to allow Epic to count up till 20. So maybe follow the Epic Attack Bonus rule, but let it count towards the 20 for attacks. After that, it's just AB. Epic Saves also seem good on paper, but rob the Monk of one of his class features. DCs are also easier to raise than saves(assuming you don't keep taking the first level of a good save class over and over, or you follow my suggestion above about limiting it to what a Monk/Dragon/Outsider of same HD would have.)

tarbrush
2006-12-30, 07:32 PM
Well, it's infinite really, as you can just ressurect the same person and continue beating them to death ad infinitum.

Thomas
2006-12-30, 07:43 PM
Keep in mind these questions are from someone completely ignorant of statistics and hates doing mathematics with a passion . . .

Is there no way to calculate what the chance of failure in an encounter intended to only reduce your resources by 20%?

No. There are, again, infinite variables you can't ever account for.

JoeFredBob
2006-12-30, 07:49 PM
Level 84,431,566, assuming level - 8 CR gives no XP. (http://d20npcs.wikia.com/wiki/A%27tuin_the_Star_Turtle)

Psh, A'Tuin is so weak for that CR. A hulking hurler of that level could deal roughly 1.8*10^(1,294,301)d6 points of damage in a single attack, assuming they put all their ability score increases into strength, took levels in Wu Jen for Giant Size, and started with a 16 in strength. With a ref save for half.

For those who aren't terribly inclined towards significant digits and want a comparison, A'Tuin has roughly 1.1*10^10 hitpoints.

(Don't worry, I don't actually care that much about the hulking hurler, i just felt like doing some math on that absurdity.)

General_Ghoul
2006-12-30, 09:05 PM
[quote=Gralamin;1754518]Your most likely to die at level 1.

For those truly rolled characters, who rolled poorly. Sorry your 1hp character died at the attack of the housecat, roll next character.

Thomas
2006-12-30, 10:34 PM
For those truly rolled characters, who rolled poorly. Sorry your 1hp character died at the attack of the housecat, roll next character.

Nope, any character, really. Most first-level characters with maximum HP can be killed by a single blow from the standard Orc Warrior 1.

Yakk
2007-01-01, 10:07 PM
We could make up a model.

Next, say that each enounter drains 20% of a 4 character group's resources in four chunks of 20% of a random character's resources, and 3 encounters per day.

That's 12 random chunks of 20% per 3 encounters, and if you get hit with 5 of them you die.

12 encounters per level.

Chance of some character in a group dieing per day:
D := Sum( 12cX * .25^X * .75^(12-X) ), X from 5 to 12.

Chance of a death per grouped level:
L := 1-(1-D)^4

Of course, the above requires assumptions that are probably not valid.

Voyager_I
2007-01-01, 11:06 PM
Not at all, I'm afraid. It's very difficult to try to predict an overall chance of death in anything but the most general terms, like "This Dungeon is supposed to be really hard." or "Ha, Kobolds! This 'ought to be easy!" Beyond that, it's up mainly to what your DM thinks is fair, how good a player you are, and good old luck of the die.

That much said, high-level characters tend to be a bit better off than lowbies. They can (generally) take a few more rounds of punishment before dropping, and they have much better means of escaping a bad situation. A third level party that's surrounded and hopelessly outnumbered can either die fighting or throw down their swords and hope the enemy doesn't hold a grudge too badly, whereas a high-level party can gather around the Wizard's Quickened Rod of Mass Teleport.

Thrawn183
2007-01-01, 11:28 PM
Not at all, I'm afraid. It's very difficult to try to predict an overall chance of death in anything but the most general terms, like "This Dungeon is supposed to be really hard." or "Ha, Kobolds! This 'ought to be easy!" Beyond that, it's up mainly to what your DM thinks is fair, how good a player you are, and good old luck of the die.

That much said, high-level characters tend to be a bit better off than lowbies. They can (generally) take a few more rounds of punishment before dropping, and they have much better means of escaping a bad situation. A third level party that's surrounded and hopelessly outnumbered can either die fighting or throw down their swords and hope the enemy doesn't hold a grudge too badly, whereas a high-level party can gather around the Wizard's Quickened Rod of Mass Teleport.

I completely disagree. PC survivability decreases the moment save or die spells enter the picture. The moment they do, there is a guaranteed (discounting death ward) 5% chance of death from each and every single last one. In fact, they can run into two per round because the moment the parties wizard gets a rod of quicken, I can guarantee the BBEG would definitely have one.

Voyager_I
2007-01-02, 12:19 AM
True, but I'd imagine PC's of any significant level would probably be pretty used to using Death Ward precisely because of that. Also, resurrection magic makes death much less significant for high-level characters than for lowbies. The unlucky sod who rolls a 1 on his save against the Medusa can be Flesh-to-Stoned, and the fighter who gets smished by an army of Fire Giants can be True Resurrected in time for breakfast the next morning. The lowbies, on the other hand, can meet Bob the Unfortunate's twin brother at the next town they stop in.