Techniques to offset perceived inequities among player characters derived from differences in capability.

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11
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2answers
337 views

Assisted healing (and Inspiring Leadership) game balance

I renamed this question because I didn't estimate the problem correctly, which actually seems to be localized to assisted healing. The old title was "How do I restrain Inspiring Leadership". (Strands ...
17
votes
3answers
3k views

Are Strength and Dexterity balanced in Vampire the Masquerade? If not, how can I fix it?

Since Revised edition, I have found that Dexterity is a very powerful trait and that Strength is not so important. Dexterity + Wits determine initiative, which is a big advantage in combat. ...
6
votes
4answers
312 views

Balancing encounters for faster feat progression

I'm DMing a group right now in Eberron (so I already have to take Action Points into account for encounter design), and my players, who are fairly new, are super intrigued by all of the interesting ...
5
votes
2answers
137 views

How would I run a game of Legend without a Battlemap?

Since both battle-mats and miniatures tend to be fairly expensive (and I would personally prefer a more descriptive style of battles anyway), I was wondering how one might run a game of Legend without ...
15
votes
5answers
1k views

How can I offer players a balanced opportunity to take powerful races, without adjusting their level?

I'm planning to run a Planescape game in 3.5 and want to offer players the opportunity to play unusual characters within the system. Ideally power level wouldn't be a concern, but some players might ...
9
votes
2answers
279 views

Dealing with defense in BESM

In BESM, it seems to be a lot easier to build a character capable of dealing massive amounts of damage than a character capable of taking massive amounts of damage. As a DM, I don't want to build ...
11
votes
8answers
2k views

Two players compete for same role - how do I balance this?

I have a D&D 3.5 group of four players, the classes are; Wizard, Rogue, Barbarian, and Swashbuckler, the level of the players is 4. (Having no healer is part of the game, not part of my question) ...
10
votes
7answers
458 views

Differing Starting Points Levels

The GM of a GURPS game I'm playing in has set the game's point level at 150. However, he has also made the option available to take 250 or 75 points at the beginning, with the understanding that the ...
3
votes
4answers
343 views

How to limit weapons on Agents of Oblivion?

Well, we recently started playing the Campaign Setting by Reality Blurs, which is a "Perfect Cocktail between horror and Espionage", and tough we're liking it, there's not a guideline to limit ...
8
votes
2answers
331 views

How do I keep a horror-like feeling with supernatural powered PCs?

I'm going to use Savage Worlds to run a horror campaign in a modern day setting; think X-Files or Supernatural. My players all agree and are excited about the horror concept, but they want to be able ...
3
votes
2answers
137 views

How can I balance magic in a setting that imposes penalties on its use?

I am starting an adventure in a custom setting that may end up as a campaign, depending on popularity. However, part of what makes the setting unique is that magic is illegal and severely punished by ...
8
votes
5answers
626 views

Last-minute system-related second thoughts before starting a game

I'm looking at starting a game with a bunch of friends. Between us, we have very little RPG experience; one of the party has played a little before (Pathfinder, I think) and I played a handful of ...
8
votes
1answer
339 views

Help me evaluate this homebrew Pokémaster class

So one of my players dropped this bomb on me during the discussion stages for a campaign we're going to start soon - he wants his character to be a Pokemaster. Reading through the class though, it ...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

My players almost die in my encounters every time. Does this mean my encounters are too hard?

I'm running my first campaign with three friends. This is the first time any of us have done any table-top role-playing. I'm working the party through the H1: Keep on the Shadowfell campaign using ...
28
votes
13answers
2k views

How does a DM correct the balance after accidentally giving the players too much gold?

Inspired by some of the answers to Pitfalls of using the optional 'XP for Gold' rule in a Basic D&D Retro Clone game? As DM/GM, you slipped up and ended up giving the PCs significantly ...
4
votes
1answer
214 views

How can I maintain game balance at extremely high levels of power in a point-build system?

More specifically, how do I keep the game fun when all parties involved are extremely powerful? The game I'm asking this about is a Wild Talents 2nd Edition game where everyone is built on a budget of ...
6
votes
2answers
406 views

Would a greatsword that is +1/+3 vs aberrations unbalance my game?

My current D&D 3.5 campaign is about aberrations and I want to give my low-level characters an advantage against aberrations. (They're level 2 at the moment). One of my players is playing a ...
42
votes
11answers
4k views

Is there a limit to Rule 0?

Rule Zero: All other rules can be changed by the GM. I appreciate that there is a massive amount of work that goes into be a GM and the last thing that any GM wants or deserves is to have his ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

Would magic 'weapons' make the monk more balanced?

The monk in D&D 3.5 (and, to a lesser extent, in Pathfinder) is generally considered underpowered. Would adding magic 'weapons' that could add enhancement bonuses and magic weapon effects to a ...
29
votes
7answers
2k views

What makes a character/creature/power/ability/etc. over-powered?

In generic terms, what makes something, regardless of what game it's being used in, over powered? I hear the term a lot, and while I can recognize it when I see it in-play (often due to someone ...
28
votes
12answers
3k views

What to do when your character is just too good?

I'm playing in the Paizo Pathfinder Jade Regent adventure path and we're having a good time so far (campaign blog and session summaries). However, as my character has gone up in power I'm now ...
26
votes
7answers
2k views

How to encourage a player's creativity without breaking the game?

I've just started a new D&D 4e campaign with a new group of players. One of my players came straight from 2nd edition, and has never played 4e before. She doesn't seem to grasp the layer of ...
8
votes
4answers
509 views

Pathfinder Battle Royale!

A friend and I were thinking about doing a Colosseum battle to the death with our group, for game sessions when not everyone was there, or just to let people test out character builds. What we were ...
5
votes
3answers
2k views

Why do Weapon Mastery feats have the requirements they do?

I've been playing and DMing in Epic tier for some time now, and have introduced quite a few house rules already (mostly common ones - free expertise feats, free improved defences), and I'm wondering ...
11
votes
6answers
2k views

How much can/should a single owned item be worth at most?

How much can any single possession take up a character's wealth? For this question, I'd like answers that operate under the presumption that wealth-by-level isn't a minimum but instead a target. I've ...
11
votes
5answers
443 views

How can I stop a large level disparity from being a problem?

In my campaign, my players each have several different characters at the home base. Every session, they pick which one they want to play. However, some players always use the same one and so have more ...
12
votes
5answers
450 views

How can I balance an enemy that my players might encounter at different levels?

My story revolves around 8 angels that my players must defeat. The thing is I want them to look for them in no particular order. How can I balance an enemy easily in advance, since they may encounter ...
6
votes
4answers
706 views

What can be done to maintain balance in a magic system in which mages must construct their own spells?

I'd like to build a magic system in which every spell is a one-off. A spell is created to serve a particular purpose and is cast once. I'm thinking that the time and place of the casting would be ...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

Power levels of RIFTS classes

Someone posted this link to a set of "tiers" for D&D 3.5 classes, and it got me thinking. I haven't played RIFTS in forever, and one of the reasons is the wide disparity in class power and ...
17
votes
7answers
19k views

Is two-weapon fighting only as a full-round action balanced versus fighting with a two-handed weapon?

One of the players in a Pathfinder game in which I am playing is arguing that characters should be able to get the additional attack for fighting with two weapons when attacking as a standard action, ...
23
votes
4answers
3k views

Monster Manual 1 - Is it balanced? Should I balance it?

I've been DM'ing a little lately 4 edition D&D and of course I'm confused again: My first adventure was a big question mark, I didn't use the exact guidelines for creating an encounter and ...
12
votes
4answers
1k views

How can one prevent the gadgeteer edge in Savage Worlds from becoming overpowered without banning or nerfing it into oblivion?

According to the text in the Deluxe Edition of Savage Worlds, the Gadgeteer edge available to weird scientists (WS) allows a player to indefinitely accumulate devices at a rate of one per session, ...
18
votes
5answers
507 views

Is it plausible that characters can invent devices in a medieval setting, and how should one balance it?

To illustrate what I mean, let me give a quick example: In The Dark Eye, there is a Staff Ritual named "Hammer des Magus" (no idea what the term is in English). Its effect is that everything ...
8
votes
4answers
1k views

Is magic, hacking, or rigging vital for balance in SR4?

I play Shadowrun now and then but ignore magic, hacking, and rigging in my games. Every time I mention this to others they tell me that I should just play Cyberpunk or d20 Spycraft. I ask why, and the ...
10
votes
3answers
688 views

How should I handle nerfing a player for the purposes of game balance?

Background I run a Live Action Role-Playing game on a monthly basis (from March through November) for anywhere from 10-30 PCs (with 3 other Plot members and anywhere from 0-10 NPCs). The majority of ...
8
votes
11answers
1k views

Balancing players' rolls, not characters

I have been the worst dice-roller in my party as far as I can remember. Be it D&D 3.5, 4th Edition, or any other dice based system, the goddess of luck has always been mean to me. To give you an ...
8
votes
2answers
5k views

Dealing with Tome of Battle's power inflation

Wait, your swordsage can run up and stab a guy with a fireball (which he's immune to), on top of a normal attack. He can do this 4 times, and take a one round break to get a full charge again? ...
25
votes
10answers
1k views

How do I balance game interactions between a giant mecha that can level cities and its pilot?

I have had recurring trouble with a subject I like, and would like to implement into my games, but can't find a good way to do so: mechas (big huge robots) From a system point of view, it is usually ...
10
votes
3answers
641 views

Players rolling all of the dice in D&D 4th Ed

I was looking at the variant rules listed in the Unearthed Arcana, and noticed one that I think could work pretty well in 4th Ed. Players Roll All The Dice Basically it turns the monster's attack ...
11
votes
6answers
3k views

Balancing a mixed game in nWoD

Jadasc raised a great point here. There are few problems that can challenge a mage that won't completely outclass a vampire, unless the vampires are extraordinarily experienced or well connected ...
13
votes
5answers
2k views

How can you balance a system without making it bland?

In one of my long-term PvP LARP games, we've done a lot of work trying to balance the system we're using, either by banning certain "classes" or "powers" or by altering their specs slightly to make ...
5
votes
1answer
429 views

What steps should I go about to balance a character class?

I'm trying to tweak/balance the Wizard (and to a lesser extent the Cleric) class(es) in Pathfinder. The two things that really irritate me are: Spell components. Tongue of frog and Eye of newt ...
9
votes
1answer
729 views

Will magic items with raw stats break game balance in DnD4e?

I, and all the players in my campaign, are all experienced WoW players. (Multiple 85s, reminiscences of 40-man raids when your class — no matter who you were — sucked but was somehow better, etc.…) I ...
13
votes
3answers
1k views

Balancing a monk variant with full base attack bonus

I'm gearing up for a 2-person campaign (my wife and myself, with myself as DM). The party will be two characters, with occasional hirelings/NPCs. One of the characters will be a DMPC (we've run one ...
10
votes
6answers
440 views

How to deal with broken combos? [closed]

Based on Rob Schwalb's article Stuck in the Middle: How do you, as a player or DM, deal with choosing or forbidding broken combos in your character, group, and system?
11
votes
4answers
516 views

Rules modifications for Exalted Clinches

In the basic rules for Exalted a successful clinch allows the attacker to do the all of following: Squeeze the target for damage Reduce the targets DV to zero Changes the tick on which the target ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

Leaders Healing too powerful/polarizing in 4e?

My friend and I were having a discussion about Leaders in D&D 4e. At any rate, it was suggested that it would be better if our party had fewer leaders rather than more: their main purpose ...
7
votes
1answer
179 views

Using Arms Law with HARP: does this affect play balance?

I've played HARP using both the rules in the core rulebook for combat, as well as those presented in Martial Law. I felt neither gave a good result but Martial Law was better. I've played Rolemaster ...
12
votes
4answers
469 views

In FATE, what is the relative value of each characteristic?

There are a lot of FATE variants out there, but most have a few common types of characteristics in common: a number of aspects, a base number of fate points (refresh), skills/abilities, stunts, and ...
16
votes
9answers
570 views

How can I encourage my group to become more well rounded?

My gaming group tends to each go in their own direction for character creation. Sometimes this leads to great games where folks are strongly opposed on dramatic elements and character interaction is ...