Reltzik

2007-03-27, 04:41 PM

A little bit ago I put up my analysis of the pseudo-percentile odds of rolling any given stat-array, which suggested a method of ranking stats. (I'll fix that bug next week and get proper data, I swear.) It was an odds-based system; that is, I was ranking each possible outcome by the odds of getting it.

At the same time, I came up with a different, value-based system... that is, one based on how useful a given set of stats is. Don't worry, this is a lot less of a headache than the last one.

I'm using a couple of basic premises here.

First off, the value of a stat comes, largely, from its modifier. The increase from 12 to 13 is far less valuable than the increase from 11 to 12, or from 13 to 14. However, the increase from 12 to 13 does have SOME value. It helps fulfill prerequesites, provides a bit of buffer against ability damage (if you lose 1 strength from 13, you don't take a modifier hit), and gets you closer to raising your modifier on a level bonus. One of the things that bugs me about WotC point buy is that you start paying the steeper rates when you go up to the odd value, when it's the even value that's worth the most.

Second, I'm going to account for the fact that your highest stat is more significant than your lowest stat. All 11s is worse than 4 11s, one 18, and one 3. The former, you can barely do anything with. The latter would actually make a decent wizard. Just stick that 18 into int and that 3 into charisma. A single high stat more than offsets the single low stat, because you can stick the stat where you want or, even if you're stuck back in the stone ages of the 90s and are assigning as rolled for some reason, you can adapt your character around it. (Unless it's Con. A -4 to your hit die sucks.) WotC attempts to deal with this by making increasing stats increasingly expensive; I'll deal with this by weighting your highest stat more heavilly than your lowest.

So, the system.

To find out how many points a given stat array is worth, perform the following opperations. (Examples given for the Elite and NPC Arrays.)

1: Arrange the stats in ascending order, with the lowest in the first column and the highest in the sixth column.

(Elite Array: 8, 10, 12, 13, 14, 15)

(NPC Array: 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)

2: Convert each stat to its modifier. If the stat is odd, add 0.2 to the modifier.

(Elite Array: -1, 0, 1, 1.2, 2, 2.2)

(NPC Array: -1, -0.8, 0, 0.2, 1, 1.2)

3: Multiply each adjusted modifier by its column number.

(Elite Array: -1, 0, 3, 4.8, 10, 13.2)

(NPC Array: -1, -1.6, 0, 0.8, 5, 7.2)

4: Add up the modifiers. That's the point value of your stat array.

(Elite Array: 32 points)

(NPC Array: 10.4 points)

If you don't like the decimal points, you can multiply the modifier by 5 and then add 1 instead of 0.2 for odd stats. Then the Elite Array is worth 160 and the NPC array is worth 52.

Okay, now someone figure out for me how this is broken.

At the same time, I came up with a different, value-based system... that is, one based on how useful a given set of stats is. Don't worry, this is a lot less of a headache than the last one.

I'm using a couple of basic premises here.

First off, the value of a stat comes, largely, from its modifier. The increase from 12 to 13 is far less valuable than the increase from 11 to 12, or from 13 to 14. However, the increase from 12 to 13 does have SOME value. It helps fulfill prerequesites, provides a bit of buffer against ability damage (if you lose 1 strength from 13, you don't take a modifier hit), and gets you closer to raising your modifier on a level bonus. One of the things that bugs me about WotC point buy is that you start paying the steeper rates when you go up to the odd value, when it's the even value that's worth the most.

Second, I'm going to account for the fact that your highest stat is more significant than your lowest stat. All 11s is worse than 4 11s, one 18, and one 3. The former, you can barely do anything with. The latter would actually make a decent wizard. Just stick that 18 into int and that 3 into charisma. A single high stat more than offsets the single low stat, because you can stick the stat where you want or, even if you're stuck back in the stone ages of the 90s and are assigning as rolled for some reason, you can adapt your character around it. (Unless it's Con. A -4 to your hit die sucks.) WotC attempts to deal with this by making increasing stats increasingly expensive; I'll deal with this by weighting your highest stat more heavilly than your lowest.

So, the system.

To find out how many points a given stat array is worth, perform the following opperations. (Examples given for the Elite and NPC Arrays.)

1: Arrange the stats in ascending order, with the lowest in the first column and the highest in the sixth column.

(Elite Array: 8, 10, 12, 13, 14, 15)

(NPC Array: 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)

2: Convert each stat to its modifier. If the stat is odd, add 0.2 to the modifier.

(Elite Array: -1, 0, 1, 1.2, 2, 2.2)

(NPC Array: -1, -0.8, 0, 0.2, 1, 1.2)

3: Multiply each adjusted modifier by its column number.

(Elite Array: -1, 0, 3, 4.8, 10, 13.2)

(NPC Array: -1, -1.6, 0, 0.8, 5, 7.2)

4: Add up the modifiers. That's the point value of your stat array.

(Elite Array: 32 points)

(NPC Array: 10.4 points)

If you don't like the decimal points, you can multiply the modifier by 5 and then add 1 instead of 0.2 for odd stats. Then the Elite Array is worth 160 and the NPC array is worth 52.

Okay, now someone figure out for me how this is broken.