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Mystic Adepts get a ridiculous boost in Life Path

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MercilessMing

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« on: <05-18-22/2046:44> »
Thanks to the inscrutable design choices in Life Path, mystic adepts will commonly be created with 6 magic, 6 power points, and a nice selection spells.  Compare that to the max you could get from priority: 6 magic, and only 4 magic's worth of points divided between PP and spells.  A lot of thought about power levels obviously went into designing mystic adepts. 
All that goes right out the window in Life Paths, where mystic adepts get to choose a power point OR spell every time they gain magic in chargen, followed by the ability to purchase spells and PP with karma.  So instead of having to make hard choices, get a little from each realm and not excelling in either, they will literally come out of chargen with the power of a full adept plus as many spells as they care to pay for. The only difference being they will not gain PP when increasing their Magic rating, which is the least cost effective way to gain a PP anyway. 
Or, to put it in another term, just build your Life Path mysad the way you would a standard magician, and accept the tradeoff of astral projection for a full slate of adept power points.  Spend 20 karma on 4 starter spells, you're golden. 

mik212

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« Reply #1 on: <05-18-22/2059:21> »
Dope. I'll keep that in mind next time I play a mystic adept. ;D

Finstersang

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« Reply #2 on: <05-19-22/0929:39> »
So even Lifepaths is busted when it comes to Mysads. Why am I not surprised? ::)

Seriously, Mysads are really not that hard to balance acrosss all the different chargen methods - as long as you are willing to limit their potential to a reasonable degree, that is. Just give them only half their Magic in PP (no rounding needed, PP are valuable in Fractions as well) and only 1x Magic (i.e. half of the spells a Full magician gets) in Starting Spells. Take away the option to Initiate for 1PP and confine them to getting their PP by increasing their Magic Attribute (or by using KI Foci) - and of course, they only get 0.5 points for each Karma-bought point of Magic as well. Maybe give them Astral Vision without Adept Powers, if all that sounds to punishing. Mysads are supposed to be a "blend" of Magicians and Adepts, so why not just make that blend more or less 50/50 all they way? No confusing separation of priorities/points/path-based Magic and Karma Progression needed.
« Last Edit: <05-19-22/1031:29> by Finstersang »

Xenon

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« Reply #3 on: <05-19-22/1538:20> »
Seriously, Mysads are really not that hard to balance acrosss all the different ...
I was under the impression that mysads were actually in a pretty good spot (for regular priority, post errata).

MercilessMing

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« Reply #4 on: <05-19-22/1552:55> »
Mysads are also in a decent place with point buy, though their point cost can vary WILDLY depending on how many PP you purchase.  If you normally go for a 4 Mag/4 PP build, it's pretty similar, little over 100 IIRC though.  But if you do a 4 Mag/2 PP build, suddenly you have 16 extra CP to spend on things.  Usually the point of a mysad at character creation is to get as many PP as possible.

Finstersang

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« Reply #5 on: <05-19-22/1602:44> »
They are in a good spot compared to the initial writing  :P The current balancing solution still treats the Magic Points from the Priorty Column differently than Magic from Special Attribute Points or Karma Advancements, which is prone to confusion and doesn´t organically translate to other Chargen Systems - hence the problem MM pointed out. Simply treating them like normal Adepts with only Magic/2 PP would have been the more elegant (and arguably, balanced) way.

NB: Just noticed that Mysads already get Astral Perception for free - I was under the Impression that they still had to buy the Adept power - which also means that an out-of-the-box MysAd beats a PhysAd even without the spells and Summons rn. They essentially get 1 PP worth of Powers for free!   
« Last Edit: <05-19-22/1608:31> by Finstersang »

MercilessMing

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« Reply #6 on: <05-20-22/1102:31> »
Comparing issues like mysads in Life Path, the karma for spells in Point Buy, and the huge Resource issue in Point Buy,  to the published optional rules, it couldn't be more clear that the people writing the optional rules should at a bare minimum have quality control authority over game mechanics.  They know more about 6e than some of the people writing the official rules.

Video game companies learn this lesson too - too often, game devs don't play their own game enough.  Devs who don't listen to their QA who play the game do so at their own peril.

Banshee

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« Reply #7 on: <05-20-22/1133:27> »
Comparing issues like mysads in Life Path, the karma for spells in Point Buy, and the huge Resource issue in Point Buy,  to the published optional rules, it couldn't be more clear that the people writing the optional rules should at a bare minimum have quality control authority over game mechanics.  They know more about 6e than some of the people writing the official rules.

Video game companies learn this lesson too - too often, game devs don't play their own game enough.  Devs who don't listen to their QA who play the game do so at their own peril.

We are pushing for this too
Robert "Banshee" Volbrecht
Freelancer & FAQ Committee member
Former RPG Lead Agent
Catalyst Demo Team

Hobbes

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« Reply #8 on: <06-16-22/1712:39> »
Just tossing this out in case anyone is curious.  Made 5 different characters using the 3 different methods to see the difference myself.  Figured I'd share with the class.

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1mO9-LPVHYrI4lOuUADypZ5Ww3dn0U00jW-gaB0bfZRM/edit?usp=sharing

MercilessMing

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« Reply #9 on: <06-16-22/1815:03> »
lol @ your samurai... who needs knowsofts when you can take scholastic mage right? :D  Honestly I still don't know how to price that quality.

edit: Your samurai Hobbes should have an Edge of 6 instead of 5.  He spent 16 CP on adjustment points, which gives you 4 adj points, but you also get 1 free. This is why I don't care for point buy that much, it's too easy to make mistakes in the absence of a generator tool.
« Last Edit: <06-16-22/1831:24> by MercilessMing »

Aria

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« Reply #10 on: <06-17-22/0808:42> »
This is why I don't care for point buy that much, it's too easy to make mistakes in the absence of a generator tool.

Shameless plug for my generator tool  ::)

https://forums.shadowruntabletop.com/index.php?topic=29982.0
Excel Cha Generators <<CG5.26>> & <CG6.xx> v28

Hobbes

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« Reply #11 on: <06-17-22/1029:13> »
Thanks!  I'll update when I get home.  They're not really intended to be playable, as they're not really fleshed out.  It was a thought experiment just to "Show the Work".  But I appreciate pointing out any errors I made.

And I would use Aria's XL tool if it worked in Google Docs  : )   I prefer spread sheets to character generators, but Google Docs is easier to share. 

Honestly I prefer spread sheets over a lot of things...

MercilessMing

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« Reply #12 on: <06-17-22/1056:51> »
Yes!  A buddy of mine also made one, we used it to crunch numbers and come to a verdict on the different generation methods.  You should share it more broadly, like in the FB groups and Reddit.

So Hobbes, I find your characters pretty interesting, I'm not one to ever choose Meta above C, but you seem to favor Meta B in most of your characters.  The diminishing returns above C just seem like you give up too much.  Just found it interesting how different people build differently.  I mean, that's how it should be, but 6e lends itself to cookie cutter priority choices..

The human samurai really shows how money was undervalued in point buy (IMO of course  ::) ).  I don't remember if I posted about it here or not, but your point buy samurai basically gets $200,000 and 4 more skill points than a priority made one, or in other words, he gets sum to 12 for the price of sum to 10.  This might be less pronounced on builds that place high value on the Meta column, but for obvious reasons, mundane humans don't, so they end up with far more money.  When you realize that for every adjustment point, you give up $80,000, I think people making point buy mundanes will choose more of the latter than the former.  Cutting this number in half ($10,000 per CP) gives better results.  Life Path doesn't value money this low either... in Life Path, one attribute or skill point equates to 25,000.  In point buy, it's 40,000. 

Side note, in Life Path, 1 adjustment point equals 25,000, while in point buy 1 adjustment point equals 80,000.  I don't expect them all to be dead on equal, but good god that's a big delta.

Hobbes

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« Reply #13 on: <06-17-22/1123:51> »
So Point Buy vs Priority is an easy-peasy comparison.  They both essentially give you the same resources, so it's easy to put together an Array in Priority and see how many Points would this cost in Point buy?

Point buy comes out ahead of Attributes A; Magic E.  How far ahead depends on the other Priority choices.  Any other Priority Array I checked Point buy is either very even or slightly behind.  Priority comes out further ahead of any build needing Power Points.

So, ahead sometimes, behind others seems about as expected.  If all the characters turned out the same, why bother with different char gen methods?   : )   

Life Path characters are just different.  Lower overall attributes, less focused skills, but usually ahead on Nuyen for Awakened characters and frequently less "things to patch" with their 50 Karma so that resource winds up being more flexible.  IMO the Life Path builds were never 'obviously' better or worse than the Priority builds for Awakened characters.

*shrug*

Overall I think any of the char gen options are fine, but balance is a subjective thing.

MercilessMing

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« Reply #14 on: <06-17-22/1234:15> »
Balance is subjective, but this is the one area of the game that's just pricing resources and arranging them in different ways.   It's one of the easiest (if not the easiest) place you can balance objectively.  And the cookie-cutter way that users interact with the priority table makes it even easier, aside from the places that are messed up in the prio table to begin with.

To me, there are 3 places messed up in the prio table:
1: The metatype column progression, especially C (should probably be 6)
2: Free Power Points, which means Adepts all choose D Magic which makes them more powerful than samurai counterparts
3: Attribute progression, which is untenable on the low end.

IMO, what point buy did to Adepts puts them closer to par with priority samurai.  To make a 6PP adept in point buy, it'd be like choosing A or B Magic in prio in terms of the resources you have leftover.  Samurai typically put B into resources.  To me that's how it should be.  Choose the max Magic column to max out your character's magic potential.  Brand new SR players do this intuitively, it's only after they crunch numbers and learn the quirks that they realize everything above D is a trap.

Point buy doesn't correct this imbalance though, it ends up overcorrecting by making nuyen so cheap.  Samurai end up way more powerful than their adept counterparts.  To express the point buy difference in terms of sum-to-10: samurai are like sum to 12 while adepts are like sum to 8.