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  1. - Top - End - #31

    Default Re: [3.5]Making large groops of mooks threatening->improving the mob template!

    Done. Relevant changes:

    1-CR of the unit based on the creature with more HD on it and size.
    2-Group buffs lost if the unit breacks.
    3-Unit cannot completely a replace leader's statistics for their own, but can still benefit from them.

  2. - Top - End - #32
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    GnomeWizardGuy

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    Default Re: [3.5]Making large groops of mooks threatening->improving the mob template!

    In retrospect my last point was kinda moot. But i think you're wrong about undead being as easy to disrupt as living creatures. Undead feel no pain, they're already dead, they won't break formation unless ordered to (I mean mindless undead, or undead in control of a necromancer, or spawns of a vampire, etc...). So a unit composed entirely of undead will be more difficult to disrupt than a unit composed of living beings, because they have no fear, no pain, nothing to lose. Another point is how would you deal with units that have immunity to fear? The one thing that causes a unit to break formation is fear, fear of being killed, of being destroyed.

    Units can also break if provoked to break, such as strikes coming from multiple directions. There could be a mechanic for that, such as a loyalty/obedience/duty score? It would be provided by the leader, and goes down as the unit gets hurt, up to a point where the unit won't be able to hold togheter and start to break down in individuals, or simply die outright.


    As for the dragon vs unit thing... I still maintain that an unit is under CR'ed, even with the new CR system. Why? Well...

    128 lvl 10 human fighters, led by a 15th level human fighter will have:

    128x10 HD + 15HD (leader) = 1295 HD

    it would be Colossal size, so CR 14 +4 (because the leader has CR 15), so CR 18.

    Assuming 5 as an average roll, it would have 6475 HP. Now how do you kill a beast like that? Even if the AC, saves, bab, etc... are low, it would outlast every single thing that the party threw it's way. Moreso, the saves wouldn't be as low as you'd think. +16 to all saves because it's colossal, so +23 fort, + 19 will, +19 reflex. A 18th level wizard using a 9th level spell and having 26 int would have 27 to his DC. The unit would have to roll a 4 or better for fort, and a 7 or better for everything else. Much more than a 50% chance to shrug off every major effect. And that is assuming that the Unit isn't buffed at all, which by your mechanics of single target buffing, would only require 1 lvl 5 wizard to buff the hell out of them. It's AC would be abysmal... But it could simply trample everything, then grapple everything, and then kill everything. It has MORE than enough turns to do that, based on it's HP.

    An optimized ubercharger could one-shot it, maybe. If he couldn't he'd be dead the next turn. Even an optimized wizard couldn't hope to get more than a 50-60% chance of a spell working against a colossal mob such as in my example.

    And i used human fighters in my example. If they were constructs, or undead, with their immunities and what not, it would be even more powerful and under cr'ed. And if the mob chose to use a volley? Then you're all but screwed. The save DC would be sky-high as would the damage.

    A unit this huge would be nothing short of a epic challenge. And smaller units still pose a threat based on sheer HP and potential damage with volleys and trample/grapple. Maybe you could playtest it and see how it goes as-is? I highly doubt that a "classical" 4-man party Rogue/Wizard/Cleric/Fighter would win without hefty optimization. Heck, if the unit kills the wizard first (Which i think any good commander would target first), and then the cleric(that would take 2 turns, 3 tops), there isn't even a chance of winning.
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  3. - Top - End - #33

    Default Re: [3.5]Making large groops of mooks threatening->improving the mob template!

    Lv 18? The party's pretty powerfull by then!

    Just out of the top of my head...

    Party will probably detect the unit before.

    Wizards aproaches with greater invisibility and opens with time stop(3 extra turns), during wich he casts waves of exhaustion, cloudkill and solid fog on the unit.

    The unit is now exhausted(no save), can't make ranged attacks or move more than 5 feets(solid fog, no save) and takes 1d4+2 con damage, if it makes the save against cloudkill.

    At the begining of it's turn, the unit uses sacrifice to get rid of the solid fog, moves away from the cloudkill and releases a volley at the wizard, wich they somehow detected.

    It's still exhausted, so, assuming they had elite array and 15 base str and 14 base dex, they now have 9 str and 8 dex. They have 12 BAB thanks to their leader. (10+15)/2=12,5, rounded down to 12. Their volley deals something around 18d6-3 (60 damage) with a DC of 10-1+12=21 for half, assuming nonmagic longbows. Hardly "sky high" for a 18th level character. The wizard will have a reflex of 6(base)+5(cloack of resistance), meaning he makes it 55% of the time, and he has just 10 Dex.

    Next turn the wizard drops another cloudkill. The unit only has around 12-14 Con to begin with, and already lost an average of 5-6 from the first cloud kill. The fighter and rogue are raining arrows from afar, and the unit cannot reach them because it's exhausted. The cleric casts more spells to slow down the unit. It isn't looking very pretty for the unit.

    However, I'll give it to you that mindless/fearless units should be harder to disrupt. Gotta think about it.
    Last edited by Oslecamo; 2009-12-03 at 12:39 PM.

  4. - Top - End - #34
    Pixie in the Playground
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    Default Re: [3.5]Making large groops of mooks threatening->improving the mob template!

    I was going to suggest some things, but pretty much found myself writing a whole new template. Its got some wierd touches that might take getting used to, but I think should be workable. The DM will still be rolling alot of dice, so I've aimed to make things so that you can roll a few at a time, so it doesn't slow things up. I've also tried to account for sparse mobs that are expecting fireballs. As much as possible I've tried to stay within the Core rules and use the assist action to make the mob more dangerous than just mooks, but otherwise just make large units workable. It is fairly streamlined in terms of real time usage, even if it takes a bit of work to create the unit. I have no idea about challange rating.

    size depends on the number of creatures and how dense the mob is and the size of the creatures.

    sparse mob of large creatures: 10 squares per creature or .1 creature per square

    sparse mob of small or medium creatures or a medium mob of large creatures: 4 squares per creature or .25 creatures per square

    dense mob of large creatures or medium mob of medium or large creatures: 1 square per creature or 1 creature per square

    dense mob of medium or small creatures .25 squares per creature or 4 creatures per square

    The mobs size is large: 2-4 huge 5-9: gargantuan:10-16 colossal: 17-36

    HD:number of members * member hit dice. You could rule that the mob breaks when it loses some fraction of its hit points. As the mobs hp drop it also loses hit dice and size respectively.

    speed:For dense mobs assume they are in heavy armour, ie 3/4 speed and reduced run.


    The following remain unchanged from the base creature:
    Iniative, BAB, saves, physical stats, skills, attack options that don't demand an activation like poison. melee AC

    Charisma, intelegence and wisdom change to 10.

    ranged AC for mobs other than sparce is modified by the mobs size modifier.

    Mob Attack: The mob attacks all creatures within it a number of times depending on the size difference between the mob creatures and the defender. mob creatures size or smaller 4 attacks, 1 size larger 6 attacks, 2 sizes larger 8 and so on (these values are halved if the mob is only on one side of the defender or creatures are back to back). These attacks all have a +10 mod for assists and flanking. (+8 without the flanking).

    The mob gets infinite attacks of opertunity.

    Attacking the mob: The mob can be attacked at range or in melee as normal but any attack cannot do more damage than the average hit point total of an individual mob member. cleave can retarget the mob up to the number of attacks the mob has on the cleaver. Area effects do damage based on the number of squares times the creatures per square times damage dealt. Any instant kill affect does the average hit point total of a mob member damage. The mob is immune to abilty damage, drain,

    The mob is unaffected by bull rush and overruns but they can still be performed to get into or through the mob. It gains a +8 assist bonus to resist however. The mob also has improved bull rush and improved overrun, and a +4 assist bonus to each.

    any thoughts?

  5. - Top - End - #35
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: [3.5]Making large groops of mooks threatening->improving the mob template!

    Three points I noted:

    1) Special Abilities
    Most special abilities DCs are dependent on HD, and so is SR. I guess you should add a clause that the heightened HD doesn't change those. A gargantuan Drow Unit with SR 79 might be a tad to strong.
    2) Units affected by buffs
    This is far too powerful, you should limit either the level or provide a list of buffs this works for. As written, a commoner unit just needs one 7th level cleric or wizard to become hax with divine power or polymorph...
    3) Units led by other units
    This is an addition I would propose:
    If a small unit leads another unit, the small unit gains the same bonuses to its ability checks, skill checks and saves as the larger unit, and it gains the same number of members that can work together with combined tactics.

  6. - Top - End - #36
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    Default Re: [3.5]Making large groops of mooks threatening->improving the mob template!

    Just dropping by to say that I really love the idea and the execution looks very decent. Finally a hundred "mooks" can be a credible threat for high level characters. Defeating a whole army is supposed to be an epic challenge for the greatest heroes, not something that'll be mostly tiresome for four 10th level characters who aren't that powerful by some settings' standards.
    My FFRP characters. Avatar by Ashen Lilies. Sigatars by Ashen Lilies, Gulaghar and Purple Eagle.

  7. - Top - End - #37

    Default Re: [3.5]Making large groops of mooks threatening->improving the mob template!

    Quote Originally Posted by Aharon View Post
    1) Special Abilities
    Most special abilities DCs are dependent on HD, and so is SR. I guess you should add a clause that the heightened HD doesn't change those. A gargantuan Drow Unit with SR 79 might be a tad to strong.
    Good point, I'll change that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aharon View Post
    2) Units affected by buffs
    This is far too powerful, you should limit either the level or provide a list of buffs this works for. As written, a commoner unit just needs one 7th level cleric or wizard to become hax with divine power or polymorph...
    This I somewhat disagree with.

    Divine powering an unit of commoners isn't that bad in my opinion. The unit would need a cleric of level 7 at least, and then they gain a small strenght and +1 BAB boost(assuming they're commoners 1) for some rounds. Unless the cleric's using DMM. Hmm, cheese...

    Polymorph...It's broken by itself. If the DM is willing to abuse polymorph, then polymorphed units won't be the only thing the party has to worry about.

    Basically, 7th level casters are already hax by themselves. The DM can indeed make an unit of polymorphed divine powered commoners, but he could just as well make the wizard scry and die on the party.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aharon View Post
    3) Units led by other units
    This is an addition I would propose:
    If a small unit leads another unit, the small unit gains the same bonuses to its ability checks, skill checks and saves as the larger unit, and it gains the same number of members that can work together with combined tactics.
    Ok, this is somewhat stranger, but also interesting. Gotta think about it.

  8. - Top - End - #38
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: [3.5]Making large groops of mooks threatening->improving the mob template!

    @2)
    hm, may be true.
    Just thought of the headache I will get when my players ask me what the rules for buffing their own followers* are so that they fight as well as the mooks their opponents train.

    @3)
    I didn't have the time to elaborate, but here's my reason for this proposal:
    I tried to come up with the unit I cited as example in my post above (68 drow level 1 fighters). Then I thought about adding some casters to make use of their tactics ability, and realized that this really lowered the standard damage output of the unit by a lot. I guess that might have been your intention, but it really favors non-mixed units, or units of creatures where every component creature has spell-likes.

    *gained through story, not through Leadership, of course

  9. - Top - End - #39
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    Default Re: [3.5]Making large groops of mooks threatening->improving the mob template!

    but a big creature wouldn't be able to properly hide inside the mob. Gotta think about this.
    Improved cover? That'd be +8 to AC. Alternatively, minor concealment. If the leader is say, only one size category larger, then they can duck down for total cover, but maybe this prevents them from commanding the mob for as long as they do this?
    ----

    Also, what about mobs battling mobs?

    If you allow that, then WTFZOMG wargame!

    I tried to come up with the unit I cited as example in my post above (68 drow level 1 fighters). Then I thought about adding some casters to make use of their tactics ability, and realized that this really lowered the standard damage output of the unit by a lot. I guess that might have been your intention, but it really favors non-mixed units, or units of creatures where every component creature has spell-likes.
    I guess you could always make the caster a leader.

    but I don't see anything that sugest they would make a better formation than the living.
    Not feeling pain or (for most undead being mindless) fear helps.
    Last edited by imp_fireball; 2010-07-16 at 09:53 PM.

  10. - Top - End - #40
    Pixie in the Playground
     
    ClericGuy

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    Default Re: [3.5]Making large groops of mooks threatening->improving the mob template!

    Like able, I was going to make some suggestions, but ended up making my own new template. If anybody's interested, you can find it here.
    (Or in my sig.)
    The Unit Template: Making Groups of Weak Enemies A Threat

    Playing StarCraft II? You should be.

  11. - Top - End - #41
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    imp_fireball's Avatar

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    Default Re: [3.5]Making large groops of mooks threatening->improving the mob template!

    There's just one thing I'd like to add to this:

    Say, if one creature in the mob cannot get past an opponent's damage reduction or hardness with their own weapon, then none of the mob should be able to damage that person with weapon damage.

    This way, stone walls can't be taken down by a mob and realism is still intact.

  12. - Top - End - #42

    Default Re: [3.5]Making large groops of mooks threatening->improving the mob template!

    Quote Originally Posted by imp_fireball View Post
    There's just one thing I'd like to add to this:

    Say, if one creature in the mob cannot get past an opponent's damage reduction or hardness with their own weapon, then none of the mob should be able to damage that person with weapon damage.

    This way, stone walls can't be taken down by a mob and realism is still intact.
    On the contrary. One humie alone cannot bring down a stone pilar. A hundred humies pushing and pulling at the same time can. That's one of the main advantage of teamwork, concentrating the strenght on many on a single task. You can also argue that the combined weight of bodies allows one to literally crush the enemy under the unit/mob even if it would be immune to the damage of individuals.

    No wall will stop an army if it doesn't have defenders guarding it. The wall is there to slow the attacker down so the defenders can shoot them. But if not killed, the attackers will overrun the wall sooner or later.

  13. - Top - End - #43
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    Default Re: [3.5]Making large groops of mooks threatening->improving the mob template!

    On the contrary. One humie alone cannot bring down a stone pilar. A hundred humies pushing and pulling at the same time can. That's one of the main advantage of teamwork, concentrating the strenght on many on a single task. You can also argue that the combined weight of bodies allows one to literally crush the enemy under the unit/mob even if it would be immune to the damage of individuals.
    Very wrong. Pushing a stone pillar is a strength check. Lifting one is matching it against your encumberance (a mob has much greater encumberance). None of that involves damaging a stone pillar. Damaging a stone pillar is cutting it in half with a sword or throwing it in an industrial crusher and reducing it to gravel.

    My argument stands.

    Crushing people is part of mob up damage sure. But what if the creature is collossal - each creature in the mob is a little flea to that one creature.

    I think DR should still matter a lot more - whereas armor would be a weaker form of DR (resisting the crushing force but weak against 'pounds per square inch', rather then increasing the creature's total density which increases its resistance on every inch of the body (hence each individual in the mob would need to do more damage, make sense?)).

    The wall is there to slow the attacker down so the defenders can shoot them.
    Throughout history, massive armies have been stalled completely by walls no more then 20 or 40 feet high. Armies need siege equipment (even something as simple as ropes and ladders) to climb over the wall, or catapults and trebuchets to smash it down.

    Under your rules, just have 1000 guys form an unstoppable collossal mob that's like a sphere of annihilation against the poor wall - 2 minutes and done.

    That's not how it went down in history. People didn't spend years building walls just to slow the enemy down - the enemy was instead halted completely.
    Last edited by imp_fireball; 2010-08-01 at 05:22 PM.

  14. - Top - End - #44
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    MonkGuy

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    Default Re: [3.5]Making large groops of mooks threatening->improving the mob template!

    Another possible thing to think about regarding leadership is the gap between commander and commanded.

    A general of a large army has a different influence on the group than say a lieutenant. While the general's bonuses may be bigger, they're also more distributed and the lieutenant, though less experienced, has a significantly more direct influence on the fighting strength of his subordinates.
    If something doesn't work, hit it.
    If it still doesn't work, hit it harder.

  15. - Top - End - #45
    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: [3.5]Making large groops of mooks threatening->improving the mob template!

    Rather than making a new template, I'd think a simpler approach is to allow the Aid Another ability to be used on ranged attacks (both by someone who "threatens" with a ranged attack and to boost ranged attacks.) Suddenly, that group of 100 orcs becomes tremendously threatening even to a level 10 party, as 95 of them use Aid Another to help the other 5 hit; even if only half succeed, that's +18 or +20 to attack, which makes for a pretty good chance to hit even against the level 10 party. With a bit of tactics (say, have one or two ready to disrupt the most important caster so that he can't accomplish anything, while the others take him out), it could be a fight to remember.

    (And of course if it's kobolds rather than orcs, you just play them as described in the MM. )

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