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  1. #1
    Zacchaeus's Avatar
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    Strongholds & Followers Videos

    With today's release of Strongholds & Followers comes the option of your players having retainers or your party taking part in battles using units of infantry, cavalry, siege engines and a lot more in battles involving hundreds of troops.

    To accompany the release here's a couple of videos showing you how to integrate Followers into your party and how Units work on the battlefield.

    The first videos covers Retainers and the Second covers Units.
    If there is something that you would like to see in Fantasy Grounds that isn't currently part of the software or if there is something you think would improve a ruleset then add your idea to the wish list http://fg2app.idea.informer.com/

  2. #2
    Thanks for putting these videos together! Definitely helped to give me an idea of how you handled this stuff mechanically. I'm actively moving a campaign toward using the S&F rule set, but I'm really not sure whether or not to try to automate unit combat in FG using the combat tracker. I see how it can work, but I'm concerned that managing the few necessary workarounds might make it more confusing for the players than not trying to automate it.

    Really, if it weren't for the power roll applying against a different stat than the attack, it'd seem like it'd work pretty smoothly. Swapping the AC effect around between rolls might get ugly during play. I really can't see any way you could meaningfully improve it leaving the rules as written intact and not requiring additional support from FG, though.

    Honestly, this adaptation is far, far better than I'd imagined would be possible when I read the book for the first time. So, cheers for that! Thanks again for your work on this!

  3. #3
    Zacchaeus's Avatar
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    You could just handle the Power attack manually. I tried to think of a way to automate it since generally people want more rather than less automation. If you don’t target you could just roll the dice in chat and do the maths manuall. Another method I thought of was turn it into a saving throw on the side being hit. But the same problem exists with knowing what the DC would be.
    If there is something that you would like to see in Fantasy Grounds that isn't currently part of the software or if there is something you think would improve a ruleset then add your idea to the wish list http://fg2app.idea.informer.com/

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Zacchaeus View Post
    You could just handle the Power attack manually. I tried to think of a way to automate it since generally people want more rather than less automation. If you don’t target you could just roll the dice in chat and do the maths manuall. Another method I thought of was turn it into a saving throw on the side being hit. But the same problem exists with knowing what the DC would be.
    Yeah! I thought of the same thing. I didn't mention it only because it wouldn't reflect the rules as written and I know some people would be really against shifting who rolls that dice, but I actually sort of like the idea of the attacker determining whether they've succeeded in attacking and the defender trying not to take damage (just seems natural to me). The DC should be doable, since your imposed DC as an attacker would be based upon your Power as your spellcasting attribute (STR) would be for a spell versus their Toughness (CON? DEX?) which could be a modifier to their roll (so basically making power be a DC and toughness a modifier instead of the reverse as it's written). Then I think you could automate all of that. It would require maths, but they could all be done ahead of time (as with determining the DC for a spellcaster) in the design of the NPCs, not being a string-on-finger during the game.

    Of course, I know I'm pretty new to this (only been using FG for a year or so) and you've been doing it for a long time, so I'm sure there's lots of things I could be overlooking.

  5. #5
    Zacchaeus's Avatar
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    Yeah, essentially a save is the same as an attack in that you are rolling a d20, adding any bonuses and comparing it to a figure. The problem is that the defender won't know in advance what their target DC is since that's going to depend on the attacker's power bonus. So it can't be 'built in' like the morale check which is against a fixed number. So in order to use the save method you'd still have to add a bonus or penalty depending on what the attackers Power attribute is.
    If there is something that you would like to see in Fantasy Grounds that isn't currently part of the software or if there is something you think would improve a ruleset then add your idea to the wish list http://fg2app.idea.informer.com/

  6. #6
    Oh - were you thinking the attacker would roll the save or the defender? I guess you could really do it either way.

    I was thinking that a solution would be the attacker imposing a save on the defender. Basically, in the same way that a dire wolf would impose a STR save on a target to knock them prone after successfully hitting with an attack. In that case, you have the freedom to set the attacker's DC for the save based upon the attribute you've chose to be their Power attribute. You'd set the defender's modifier for the save based on what you've chosen to be their Toughness attribute.

    So the DC would be set in the attacker's power action like you'd have the DC set in the definition for a spell you'd cast or like the dire wolf's ability. You'd need to convert the Power modifier into a DC and the Toughness attribute into a modifier ahead of time when you created the NPC record. That wouldn't be straightforward to anyone looking at it. However, the outcome would be not needing to make modifications during combat and resulting in the exact same probability of succeeding or failing the power check.

    TBH, though I think this would automate combat nicely within the confines of what FG can do, the fact that it meaningfully departs from RAW would probably make it unpalatable enough for many that it wouldn't be worth implementing.

  7. #7
    First let me echo mprigge's comment that I'm impressed how effectively this automates the rules inside the FG shell. I had assumed it would be much harder. The workarounds with using stat fields etc for units was very clever.

    On using saves for power rolls, does this work? We can set a fixed save DC on the target and the target determines the value for the power roll. So using the example from the video, if we have the Iron Heart Defenders have hit, and now need their power roll (power 2) against the Skeletal Archers (toughness 14 but AC 15). If there is an ability on the Skeletal Archers with Dex Save DC 14 and if we use Dex for Power (set the Iron Heart Defenders to Dex 14 giving a bonus of 2) doesn't this work? We have the skeletons force the ironhearts to roll and the ironhearts add the correct bonus to determine success/failure. And since the target will always be 14 regardless of who attacks, doesn't this basically resolve the issue?

    Is there some modifier or other result I'm missing here?

  8. #8
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    To be honest I don't know. The question is whether an attack with a +2 bonus against an AC of 14 is the same as a DC 14 saving throw with a +2 bonus. The difference being that on the attack success is measured by exceeding the number required whilst the second would measure success by the saving throw failing.
    If there is something that you would like to see in Fantasy Grounds that isn't currently part of the software or if there is something you think would improve a ruleset then add your idea to the wish list http://fg2app.idea.informer.com/

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Zacchaeus View Post
    To be honest I don't know. The question is whether an attack with a +2 bonus against an AC of 14 is the same as a DC 14 saving throw with a +2 bonus. The difference being that on the attack success is measured by exceeding the number required whilst the second would measure success by the saving throw failing.
    Looking only at a very high level.

    Attack with +2 vs AC 14 = Player controlling Ironhearts rolls d20, adds +2 and a modified result of 14 or higher = it works proceed to next step in resolving (chat window will call this a hit). 13 or lower stop (chat window will call this a miss).
    Power check with +2 vs Save DC 14 = player controlling Ironhearts rolls d20, adds +2 and a modified result of 14 or higher = it works proceed to next step in resolving (chat window will call this a success). 13 or lower stop (chat window will call this a fail).

    The biggest oddity seems to be that the attacker rolls to hit and the defender triggers the power check. Other than that it seems right to me. .

  10. #10
    Yeah, I would make the power check a Con save. There's no difference between an ability check at +2 against a DC of 13 and forcing the target to make a DC 12 Con save if the target's Con save is at +3, except that Fantasy Grounds knows how to do that. The Ironheart Defenders, then, would have the following Action:
    Attack. Melee Weapon Attack: +4 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: the target must make a DC 12 Constitution saving throw or take 1 point of damage.

    Rather than mess with the stats, I would just set the Con and Wis save bonuses to equal Toughness -10 and Morale, respectively. Of course your save DC would be 10 + Power.

    Done this way, you can even automate the traits "Made of Sterner Stuff" and "That Just Made Them Angry" as Angry; ADVATK; ADVSAV: Constitution and Stern; Magic Resistance to take advantage of greater automation, assuming the Battle Magic actions are written as "ranged spell attack" or "melee spell attack" and parsed accordingly.
    Last edited by epithet; April 1st, 2019 at 21:12.

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