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    AmberVael's Avatar

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    Apr 2006

    Default Re: Tier System for Classes (Rescued from MinMax)

    Quote Originally Posted by Gotterdammerung View Post
    I weep for all the GM's and players who come here for help and instead get taught how to be prejudice towards classes. D&D is supposed to be a game that plunges you into a world of imagination and instead people around the world are standing around a table arguing over "tiers".

    I can see the idea behind creating a system of measurement in the hopes of having more compatible power levels in adventuring groups. But in reality this list does not achieve that goal, and instead just causes conflict between GM's and players. Even among amicable players it still does not achieve its goal, because the "tier" shouldn't be on the classes. The "tier" system should define players. You can take a tier 1 player and give him anything, and he will always shine in the group. He will always spend the time and effort to make sure his character is efficient and competent. And vice versa you can give a tier 4 player the best build in the world and he will still be jealous and incompetent.
    My experience disagrees with everything in this post.

    The tier system and things like it, the people who have thought about it and used it have done more than help me understand which classes are lower power and which ones are higher power. No, more than that, they've emphasized balance and cooperation. Before I read about it, I didn't really consider party balance, one person overshadowing another or making things more difficult for the DM. Now though, I willingly step back from things that won't mesh well with my current group. When I see something of mine that will cause problems, I alter it. And my knowledge, pieced together from resources like the tier system, doesn't just help me recognize the difficulty- it helps me solve it without betraying my character concept. Stuff like this helped bring such potential difficulties to my attention and consider them, then deal with them appropriately rather than stumbling on in ignorance and frustration.

    And I know for a fact that all my skills won't make every character I play strong or even competent. When I play a psion, I find my character is capable of many, many more things than when I play a monk. My competence is irrelevant when I do not have the correct tools. It doesn't matter if someone knows how to build a house if they have none of the resources to create it. If I play a monk in a group of wizards and clerics, the capabilities of the other classes will overshadow mine.

    Admittedly, it's not all on the classes. That's stated right there in JaronK's write up. A player CAN influence how powerful their character is, whether by raising it or lowering it. But what you're working with strongly influences your level of power too.

    I want to go out and disagree with Zaq though- there are levels of power that I don't want to play, and thus classes I will usually avoid, and I've seen others who are the same way. But this is not a bad thing- it's merely an acknowledgement of one's own preferences, and thus what groups and premises are of interest to someone, and what ones aren't. It's better to recognize that a group's tastes and interests differ from yours than to try and force yourself or the group to conform to a different set of tastes. And things like the tier system assist in that recognition.
    Last edited by AmberVael; 2013-01-20 at 12:46 PM.