A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2
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  1. - Top - End - #91
    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Feb 2018

    Default Re: Are save-based attacks too overpowered in OOTs-verse?

    Putting aside whatever the numbers 'should' be and only looking at it narratively, I feel like it kind of makes the party seem... a bit pathetic and frail. The entire party was just nearly wiped out instantly by a juvenile beholdermysterious many-eyed creature. Not quite, of course, and it gave Haley especially some neat action and a chance to shine after! But also makes me think the party was extremely lucky that Sunny and Serini ignored the rest of the party picking themselves back up for what seemed like several rounds, only focusing on Haley, when as far as I can tell Sunny could have easily just... zapped them all again WHILE aiming the antimagic at Haley. Or just, immediately upon Minrah waking up and starting to do things. Putting her and the lizard back out of commission could have only taken two beams. Three to include Elan if they didn't immediately notice Minrah waking up. (which maybe they just NEVER did somehow?)

    But maybe mysterious eye monster beams have a recharge time in this universe? Serini was trying to tell Sunny to use another one on Haley, but maybe that wasn't an option for a couple rounds prior.

    as an aside, I decided to look up how beholders (the completely different creature) worked in 3.5, and their mechanics about firing arcs on eyes do a lot to explain why Sunny flipped upside down like that for it, and make it seem like a really clever tactic. Which... also feels slightly at odds with then proceeding to take a significant dip in apparent competency by either failing to notice the party pulling itself back together or just not bothering to respond.

    I dunno. I don't think it's awful writing or anything, but it's definitely got some aspects that gave me pause. Ultimately, though, those issues won't really matter to the story.
    Last edited by OvisCaedo; 2021-09-18 at 08:35 AM.

  2. - Top - End - #92
    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Sep 2009

    Default Re: Are save-based attacks too overpowered in OOTs-verse?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hurkyl View Post
    The problem is that this sort of thing changes how the reader engages with the story. For example, the more blatant author fiat is, the harder it is to maintain one's suspension of disbelief.
    It isn't author fiat if it's been consistently portrayed that way as a fundamental aspect of the universe since the beginning. It's also not like it's being used as a lazy way to have the Order lose or win a fight that they shouldn't- the Order was put in a sticky situation, and they found a clever way out of it. We could have had the same outcome to the fight if half of the Order had made their saves and the half that didn't just turned out to be completely useless for the rest of the fight, but instead we got to see them working around the problem, using teamwork, and taking advantage of a noticeable weakness in their enemy (ie, Elan getting Sunny to blink by talking about getting sand in his eye).

    D&D combat rules are not optimized for storytelling. Rich's tweaks and interpretations are well-thought out changes that make combat more interesting to read, make dramatic moments more possible, and get around the kind of abstractions that are necessary in table top combat but make no sense when translated to a visual medium.

    Or, to be cheekier about it, you're basically complaining about him not killing Xykon using The Peasant Railgun.

  3. - Top - End - #93
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    ClericGuy

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    Dec 2013

    Default Re: Are save-based attacks too overpowered in OOTs-verse?

    Quote Originally Posted by BloodSquirrel View Post
    The only "problem" with it is that it may be statistically unlikely under D&D rules (which the comic is not 100% strict about- a one in a million chance is explicitly a sure thing in this comic) under a given set of assumptions.
    Given that the actual world of OOTS is a compromise created by literal Gods after a zillion failures as an Action-Comedy Parody of a Role Playing Game, it won't strictly conform to the rules of drama or the rules of 3.5.

    This is why Tarquin and Elan can sometimes punch way above their weight in a strategic fashion. And sometimes are buffoons.

    Near as I can tell, it is a world that mostly conforms to D&D rules (including occasional edition changes) without being an actual campaign (with GM, players etc, so no PC-as-puppet-intruding-on-world they way you get in Drew Hayes Spell Swords and Stealth series, or authors like in Redshirts). But it also conforms to Rules of Drama, which include the concept of Protagonist (and PC vs NPC more as in "Protagonist Character" vs "Non Protagonist Character than "Player Character") and the kind of complaints V often makes about probability.

    Mostly this plays out with D&D at tactical level and Rule of Drama at strategic level but sometimes you get an overlap and saving throws are absolutely a place where Rule of Drama often overrules dice-based game mechanics in this series. (See Haley familing saves vs Maximized Fireballs, which have quite low reflex saves for their level vs Sorceress Bandit, Young Adult dragon being affected, much less defeated, by disintegrate, which has to penetrate both spell resistance and saving throws, prismatic spray turning a huge demon to stone, which...of course...shouldn't have been there at all without Rule of Drama anyway, everybody failing saves vs CR15ish dominate effects in vampire fight, a bunch of things in this beholder fight, etc etc etc.)

    Where saves mostly work as intended? Redcloak. He gets the kind of results you'd expect and is tactically savvy enough to just cast a spell again when opposition gets lucky.

  4. - Top - End - #94
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Default Re: Are save-based attacks too overpowered in OOTs-verse?

    Quote Originally Posted by Seward View Post
    Where saves mostly work as intended? Redcloak. He gets the kind of results you'd expect and is tactically savvy enough to just cast a spell again when opposition gets lucky.
    Huh. You know if he wasn't so tactically savvy, the rule of drama would probably make all of his spells work the first time.

  5. - Top - End - #95
    Titan in the Playground
     
    KorvinStarmast's Avatar

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    Default Re: Are save-based attacks too overpowered in OOTs-verse?

    Quote Originally Posted by hungrycrow View Post
    Huh. You know if he wasn't so tactically savvy, the rule of drama would probably make all of his spells work the first time.
    Somewhere, a copper piece harlot just leveled up to silver piece harlot ... DING!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Malifice View Post
    (paraphrased) Rulings are not 'House Rules.' Rulings are a DM doing what DMs are supposed to do.
    Quote Originally Posted by greenstone View Post
    Agency means that they {players} control their character's actions; you control the world's reactions to the character's actions.
    Gosh, 2D8HP, you are so very correct!

  6. - Top - End - #96
    Pixie in the Playground
     
    RedWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Are save-based attacks too overpowered in OOTs-verse?

    Quote Originally Posted by OvisCaedo View Post
    Putting aside whatever the numbers 'should' be and only looking at it narratively, I feel like it kind of makes the party seem... a bit pathetic and frail. The entire party was just nearly wiped out instantly by a juvenile beholdermysterious many-eyed creature. Not quite, of course, and it gave Haley especially some neat action and a chance to shine after! But also makes me think the party was extremely lucky that Sunny and Serini ignored the rest of the party picking themselves back up for what seemed like several rounds, only focusing on Haley, when as far as I can tell Sunny could have easily just... zapped them all again WHILE aiming the antimagic at Haley. Or just, immediately upon Minrah waking up and starting to do things. Putting her and the lizard back out of commission could have only taken two beams. Three to include Elan if they didn't immediately notice Minrah waking up. (which maybe they just NEVER did somehow?)

    But maybe mysterious eye monster beams have a recharge time in this universe? Serini was trying to tell Sunny to use another one on Haley, but maybe that wasn't an option for a couple rounds prior.

    as an aside, I decided to look up how beholders (the completely different creature) worked in 3.5, and their mechanics about firing arcs on eyes do a lot to explain why Sunny flipped upside down like that for it, and make it seem like a really clever tactic. Which... also feels slightly at odds with then proceeding to take a significant dip in apparent competency by either failing to notice the party pulling itself back together or just not bothering to respond.

    I dunno. I don't think it's awful writing or anything, but it's definitely got some aspects that gave me pause. Ultimately, though, those issues won't really matter to the story.
    You've answered your own question here, Sunny is a juvenile. His/her only competent actions so far have been at the express instruction of Serini. And when she was in danger, they immediately ignored the wider battle (like the dangerous wizard getting back up) to focus on Serini's welfare, albeit not in the most productive fashion. From what we've seen so far Sunny is a dangerous opponent, but only when Serini is giving the orders. Haley seems to have recognised this and took actions to separate the two.

  7. - Top - End - #97
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
    danielxcutter's Avatar

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    Default Re: Are save-based attacks too overpowered in OOTs-verse?

    I suspect Serini only brought Sunny because a) Sunny’s AMF cone makes cheesing adventurer types hilariously easy and b) she underestimated the Order immensely.
    Cool elan (no not that kind) Illithid Slayer by linkele.

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  8. - Top - End - #98
    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Jul 2019

    Default Re: Are save-based attacks too overpowered in OOTs-verse?

    Remember https://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0456.html ?

    Sometimes save-based spells are underpowered.
    Whatever is funnier I guess.

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