Spat
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Joined: Sat 04 Jan 2020, 13:32

Corruption for Mystics

Mon 13 Sep 2021, 14:05

To understand better, I tried to calculate the Corruption mechanics for Mystics, based on 5E spellcasting rate.
It is of course just an example, and a real game would not look like that.

I considered a 5th level Human Mystic that casts 4x 1st level, 3x 2nd level, 2x 3rd level before getting a long rest. Cantrips used are favored, and the Mystic has 3 favored leveled spells + 3 unfavored spells, that he uses 50% of the time (rounded down).
That represents a total of : 2x1 + 2x(d4+1) + 2x2 + d4+2 + 3 + d4+3 = 26 pts corruption

Artifact Crafter
Thanks to Talisman Crafter, with 3 talismans, this approach halves the effect of the 3 unfavored spell.
Thus he gains only : 2x1 + 2x(d4+1)/2 + 2x2 + (d4+2)/2 + 3 + (d4+3)/2 = 19 pts corruption.
With +4 Ability, +3 Proficiency, the corruption Threshold is 14.
With one Short Rest the Mystic could stay below the Threshold by spending 1HD. (-6 points)
Later a Long Rest he will decrease the Corruption to 7 points (-6 points again).

Self Taught
This Approach knows less spell. 3 cantrips + 5 leveled spells as a level 5 + 2 rituals.
A 1st level + one 2nd level are not favored, the 3 others are.
The Self Taught has interest to learn low level spells and to cast them at higher level, especially for unfavored. Let us suppose he casted a 2nd level at 3rd level, and a 1st level at 2nd level in the list.
Thus he gains only : 2x1 + 2x(d4+1) + 2x2 + (d4+1) + 3 + (d4+2) = 23 pts corruption.
With One Short Rest and 1HD spent on Corruption, the Self Taught will manage to stay at 17 pts of Corruption, but above Threshold.
Hel will roll 3 times for Marks of Corruption, and the probability to fail such a roll is : 27%
However, at the cost of 3 permanent Corruption, the Self Taught has been able to learn Find Familiar + Blood Bond. He transfers permanent Corruption up to 2 to a familiar, then summons a new one. So he should be able to transfer permanent corruption during the adventure to a familiar, and temporary corruption to 0 at the end of the adventure. Spending Thalers, he starts the next adventure with a new familiar.
Another approach could be to use Purging Fire as a Ritual to remove all Permanent Corruption at the end of an adventure. That’s a huge advantage compared to other approaches.

Sorcerer
Thanks to the Shadowed Slope, the sorcerer gains : 2x1 + 2x(d4) + 2x2 + d4+1 + 3 + d4+2 = 22 pts corruption.
With One Short Rest and 1HD spent on Corruption, the sorcerer will manage to stay at 16 pts of Corruption, but above Threshold.
However, thanks to The Darkened Path feature, the probability to fail the Corruption rolls is low :
1,25% only.
The sorcerer has no spell to reduce permanent corruption.

Staff Mage
The Staff Mage has no feature to reduce temporary corruption.
He will receive the 26 points of corruption minus the Short Rest = 20 points in final.
He will have to roll 6 times, and the probability to fail at least one roll is : 70%
The Staff Mage can transfer 3 points of Permanent Corruption to his staff.
Also, at the cost of 3 permanent Corruption, the Mage has been able to learn Find Familiar + Blood Bond. He transfers permanent Corruption up to 2 to a familiar, then summons a new one. So he should be able to transfer permanent corruption during the adventure to a familiar, and temporary corruption to 0 at the end of the adventure. Spending Thalers, he starts the next adventure with a new familiar.

Symbolist
The Symbolist has 6 runes available. It is quite expensive for this approach to cast high level unfavored spells (level x2 corruption).
That represents a total of : 2x1 + 2x2 + 2x2 + 4 + 3 + 6 = 23 pts corruption
With One Short Rest and 1HD spent on Corruption, the Symbolist will manage to stay at 17 pts of Corruption, but above Threshold.
Hel will roll 3 times for Marks of Corruption, and the probability to fail such a roll is : 27%
However, at costs of 3 permanent Corruption, the Symbolist has been able to learn Find Familiar + Blood Bond. He transfers permanent Corruption up to 2 to a familiar, then summons a new one. So he should be able to transfer permanent corruption during the adventure to a familiar, and temporary corruption to 0 at the end of the adventure. Spending Thalers, he starts the next adventure with a new familiar.

Theurg
The Theurg has no feature to reduce temporary corruption.
He will receive the 26 points of corruption minus the Short Rest = 20 points in final.
He will have to roll 6 times, and the probability to fail at least one roll is : 70%
However the Theurg has the possibility to use Purging Fire as a Ritual to remove all Permanent Corruption at the end of an adventure. That’s a huge advantage compared to other approaches.

Troll Singer
The troll singer can cast up to 6 levels of spells without Corruption. Let us suppose he will use this feature to cast the 2 3rd level spells of our list. He would then have to make Charisma saves for the remaining spells, at +7.
The probability of success for DC14 is 91% for favored, 70% else.
For DC 16, 84% for favored, 60% else.
The average value of permanent corruption he ends up with : 2x1x9% + 2x1x30% + 2x1x16% + 1x40% =1,5 pts of permanent corruption.
The Troll Singer has no spell to reduce permanent corruption, but on the other hand he does not gain temporary corruption.

Witch
The Witch has no feature to reduce temporary corruption.
He will receive the 26 points of corruption minus the Short Rest = 20 points in final.
He will have to roll 6 times, and the probability to fail at least one roll is : 70%
However, at costs of 3 permanent Corruption, the Witch has been able to learn Find Familiar + Blood Bond. He transfers permanent Corruption up to 2 to a familiar, then summons a new one. So he should be able to transfer permanent corruption during the adventure to a familiar, and temporary corruption to 0 at the end of the adventure. Spending Thalers, he starts the next adventure with a new familiar.

Wizard
The wizard has no feature to reduce temporary corruption.
He will receive the 26 points of corruption minus the Short Rest = 20 points in final.
He will have to roll 6 times, and the probability to fail at least one roll is : 70%
However, at costs of 3 permanent Corruption, the Wizard has been able to learn Find Familiar + Blood Bond. He transfers permanent Corruption up to 2 to a familiar, then summons a new one. So he should be able to transfer permanent corruption during the adventure to a familiar, and temporary corruption to 0 at the end of the adventure. Spending Thalers, he starts the next adventure with a new familiar.

I find this Corruption system quite effective : it could have been interesting, with the mystic having to think twice before casting a spell, and define a strategy for the whole adventure. « Do I keep a reserve for the big boss, and take a risk now ? ». And in the end, the Corruption will get him.
But it seems there are too many loopholes in this system : Theurgs, Self Taught (who can cast Purging Fire many times until their Permanent Corruption is 0), and the combo Find Familiar + Blood Bond which neutralizes the problem as long as you have a few hundreds of Thalers. This is quite a lot of exceptions…

That seems quite the opposite for the combat classes : all of them are more powerful than 5e, which is already highly heroic system. All of them have up to 4 attacks, approaches with permanent advantages or dodge…

In the end I have the feeling this won’t feel enough as a "Dark Fantasy" setting, players will choose obviously Mystics with ways to eliminate Permanent Corruption and therefore will cast spells almost as in 5e, and the fighters will hack their way out of problems more easily than in 5e. Of course the limited number of Hit Dice will slow them down, but I don’t think this is enough to make us feel we are in a Dark Fantasy setting where the heroes will be fearing their environment and opponents.

What is your feeling dear reader, especially those who have played a lot Symbaroum ?
 
Ugglefar
Posts: 79
Joined: Thu 04 Aug 2016, 21:17
Location: Sweden/USA

Re: Corruption for Mystics

Mon 13 Sep 2021, 17:17

I was surprised that they gave all the martial classes 4 attacks; in standard 5e only the Fighter gets 4 attacks. But with only a month of the alpha there isn't really time to try it out in actual games, sadly.

I also reacted to how easy it is to get rid of permanent corruption if you pick the right rituals. At the same time I have found the rules for getting permanent corruption when you learn a ritual to seem a little bit underwhelming. Sure you don't get temporary corruption when casting a ritual, but that permanent corruption really hurts. Unless you pick the right rituals and then suddenly permanent corruption isn't an issue at all any more. And I don't feel the higher risk of corruption for the Self-Taught and Sorcerer in the rules. In the original rule set the ever presence of Corruption for the Sorcerer felt more noticeable.

However, all of this is hard to judge because I am only theory crafting here, I will not have the time to actually try out these things in actual games. Maybe the cost in thaler for using the rituals removing permanent corruption will make it balanced. And perhaps the martial classes will be balanced. Still, I do have concerns over abilities and traits that give permanent advantage on rolls, like the Knight's Peerless Effort. There are similar mechanics in standard 5e, but they are usually limited to 1-3 uses per long rest.

The Monster Hunter's Polearm Master at 17th level that makes all melee attacks against you automatically fail if they have a shorter reach than you feels really, really strong. I guess I will have to wait and see for the GM version of trolls, but the thought of 100 trolls attacking you at once with one-handed maces cannot hurt you at all feels a little bit weird.

And I still don't understand the insistence of basing the Hit Dice on your Origin's size, when every Origin except goblins are of medium size. It would just be easier to balance to base it of your class. I mean, all classes have a Hit Die of D8 right? And almost every Origin has a Hit Die of D8 (except the goblin). Basically every character will have the same Hit Die as their class, it feels like an insistence on a game mechanic that doesn't really bring something special to the game in a practical sense.
 
SoulAngel
Posts: 33
Joined: Tue 31 Aug 2021, 19:29

Re: Corruption for Mystics

Mon 13 Sep 2021, 22:04

I don't like rituals to loose corruption, they are too powerful and so they became mandatory.

I will authorise player to use it only one time per campaign...
 
rolling
Posts: 4
Joined: Sat 18 Sep 2021, 20:46

Re: Corruption for Mystics

Sat 18 Sep 2021, 22:16

Self Taught
This Approach knows less spell. 3 cantrips + 5 leveled spells as a level 5 + 2 rituals.
P112 - Boundless magic says ".... When you gain a spell level you can learn a cantrip or a spell up to your current maximum spell level as shown on the Mystic table." It says "gain a spell level" rather than "gain a level" which would mean the self taught would have one 1st Level spell at level one and could heave learned two other spells (one up to 2nd at level 3 and one up to 3rd level at level 5) rather than the five you suggest they would have access to. This doesn't limit the self-taught in the way that was advertised (more prone to corruption) but limits them due to knowing very few spells compared to other mystics.

For reference the standard wording is "When you gain a level in mystic you learn another spell, which can be any spell on your list, up to your current maximum spell level as shown on the Mystic table." so if this was intended to be the same I would expect that similar words would have been used - i.e. "When you gain a level in mystic" rather than "when you gain a spell level"
 
Barbarianbob
Posts: 42
Joined: Sat 16 Jan 2021, 02:16

Re: Corruption for Mystics

Sun 19 Sep 2021, 17:51

Interesting observations on the spell casting. I would love for Jacob or one of the designers to take a moment to comment on these (and if they have elsewhere, perhaps insert a link to the answers). A live call in event would also be cool. Something you can reference on Youtube later.

I think, bottom line, I'm inclined to trust the developers as they have play tested (I'm assuming, lol) these features.

Also, I did not catch that every melee class has 4 attacks, but remember, that's over the course of many levels, and these classes do not have features that their core 5e counterparts have. I'm not really seeing an issue with that, but we'll have to see it in play. I do think that Polearm thing is crazy though, but it's easily fixed by tying the number of times per round to the prof bonus (or even the numbers of times per "Short Rest" to your Prof bonus).
 
SoulAngel
Posts: 33
Joined: Tue 31 Aug 2021, 19:29

Re: Corruption for Mystics

Mon 20 Sep 2021, 16:17

I'm a bit worried with troll singers.
Songs of the Dawn Troll singers do not gain temporary Corruption for singing their spells. Instead they must make a Charisma saving
throw for each leveled casting, gaining a point of permanent Corruption on a failure.
This is quite hard (specially when you look at the difficulty).

And also concerning the self taught mage which are better protected against corruption than traditional wizard or witch... which is quite illogic!
 
Ugglefar
Posts: 79
Joined: Thu 04 Aug 2016, 21:17
Location: Sweden/USA

Re: Corruption for Mystics

Mon 20 Sep 2021, 16:22

And also concerning the self taught mage which are better protected against corruption than traditional wizard or witch... which is quite illogic!

I agree, I posted a suggested change to Self-Taught and Sorcerer in a separate post, but it didn't spark any discussion.
 
WakaDM
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue 21 Sep 2021, 16:30

Re: Corruption for Mystics

Tue 21 Sep 2021, 17:15

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/ ... 2000661584


Here is a link to a comparison of 5e at its core and 5e as the conversion regarding spell usage between casters and mystics of the setting. 5e is a vast system and a lot of it rests in its bonkers amount of different casters and schools. Depending on the setting it might see more or less use (World Books of theirs have different rules regarding spell use and schools allowed etc) but the point of the comparison is just to show how massive the difference is between 5e core and this conversion. This comparison isn't there to make the argument for that it should be a 1:1 translation between resources but rather to point to the disparity it creates in access and usage when considering the rather impressive spell list that comes with 5e.

The issue for me comes down to 1) What the intention is for spell usage per day/rest. 2) what has already been mentioned regarding efficient ways of cleansing/shedding temp corruption differs wildly between approaches and 3) the double nature of permanent corruption.


1) I get from the setting and the concept of it that the conversion aims to lower spell usage as per the idea of magic being a corrupting power (this is a Dark Fantasy setting after all) but I definitely feel like it has gone a bit too far if you consider the entire leveling scale. For the lower levels the scaling makes sense, the reliance on primarily cantrips make sense and the choosing of tactical favored spells makes sense...but at the top end it becomes a bit...weird. For instance casting a 9th level unfavored spell is your entire corruption pool at level 20...and then what? Sure you get to execute a 9th level spell (that may or may not work) and then you are capped and have to gamble...and if you are a wizard then you are definitely not enjoying your time. This would be one thing if it was strictly looking at combat applications but it looks at all spell usage holistically. End of the day the reason most choose casters/mystics is to tap in to the problem solving or fighting concept of using spells rather than swords, and with this the parity between martial and mystic classes skews really in the favor of martial classes. If this however is the intent then you have succeeded...but I am not sure I can convince anyone in my group to play a class that is so very much 'lesser than' in their eyes in your capacity to participate and affect things (both in combat and in seeking alternate solutions)


2) This has been excellently addressed already so won't go in to detail about it but I rather would like to add my thought here; to me I see these two as examples of good design in that they both have adapted styles that either aims for a smaller but more efficient pool of spells (eclectically chosen to show no adherence to any tradition and picked up haphazardly) and the costs of casting higher level spells frequently (at least I assume this is the idea, see above in how wizard doesn't really get to either). This is reminiscent of a setting version of the Warlock class and I find the idea compelling.

Same thing can be said for the sorcerer, definitely playing within the corruption system and breathes the concept in that it thrives in the darkness and does not give a damn about using and abusing it...but within that they become (mechanically) more shielded than any other approach (excluding self-taught).

HOWEVER! Neither of these are bad examples and should be nerfed in my option...but rather I see them as great concepts that should serve to put the rest on parity. In the OG ruleset the shielded traditions had due to their extensive care and training ways to circumvent accumulation of corruption in ways that the Self-taught and sorcerer didn't have access to. But they played with it in different ways. As some have pointed out their efficiency is in stark contrast to what their setting description dictates but I would rather see others 'buffed' than these 'nerfed'...give the rest options to manage corruption or expand their pools such as using a different formula for calculating threshold for wizard and symbolist etc...and while you are at it perhaps look at spell attainment rate of the Self-taught...fewer spells for a more focused toolkit is fine but end of the day, options are fun and as it stands feats are not optional, they become almost a must in the minds of my players (and perhaps others).

3) The crux of the matter here for me is the dual use of Permanent corruption as both a resource and a currency (and a alt damage type and a setting accumulation...Permanent Corruption is rather prolific in it's abilities it seems!). The easiest way to liken this is that mages would effectively have to sacrifice spell slots...permanently...to use magical gear. To me just reading it creates a massive disparity between mystics and martial classes. To interact with core items and rewards of the setting you might have to give up some of your capacity to use core parts of your kit...there is no way of reading that line to me that doesn't make me scratch my head. In OG you always had the option between surrendering xp or taking permanent corruption and there was a reason my players always chose the former over the latter, it just comes off as punishing some classes instead of feeling like "oh cool I finally got a really neat item"!

Ultimately I like the ideas presented in the Alpha material...but these are things I feel haven't been considered properly and while some people lean heavily in to the crapsack world and how everything must be hard and miserable (and I do appreciate the edge of this world and the foreboding of the setting, that and political 4D chess are my fav parts) I also have to advocate for players in that no one wants to play something that just doesn't feel like it can contribute because it has to sit on its spell use waiting for a rainy day (the Cooldown Paradox of MMOs comes to mind).

Sorry for the wordy post but I felt like I had to throw this out there, you may all commence to side with me, against me or just start munching popcorn.
 
Ugglefar
Posts: 79
Joined: Thu 04 Aug 2016, 21:17
Location: Sweden/USA

Re: Corruption for Mystics

Tue 21 Sep 2021, 17:49

1) I get from the setting and the concept of it that the conversion aims to lower spell usage as per the idea of magic being a corrupting power (this is a Dark Fantasy setting after all) but I definitely feel like it has gone a bit too far if you consider the entire leveling scale. For the lower levels the scaling makes sense, the reliance on primarily cantrips make sense and the choosing of tactical favored spells makes sense...but at the top end it becomes a bit...weird. For instance casting a 9th level unfavored spell is your entire corruption pool at level 20...and then what? Sure you get to execute a 9th level spell (that may or may not work) and then you are capped and have to gamble...and if you are a wizard then you are definitely not enjoying your time. This would be one thing if it was strictly looking at combat applications but it looks at all spell usage holistically. End of the day the reason most choose casters/mystics is to tap in to the problem solving or fighting concept of using spells rather than swords, and with this the parity between martial and mystic classes skews really in the favor of martial classes. If this however is the intent then you have succeeded...but I am not sure I can convince anyone in my group to play a class that is so very much 'lesser than' in their eyes in your capacity to participate and affect things (both in combat and in seeking alternate solutions)

My thoughts on this is that this really catches the feeling that high level magic is dangerous. It should also be mentioned that just because you have enough temporary Corruption to force you to roll for a mark of Corruption, this doesn't stop you from casting more spells. In a way you have unlimited spell slots of every level, but are you prepared to pay the price for it? Getting permanent Corruption is on average a slow accumulation over several game sessions.

Does this mean that martial classes are better than caster classes at levels 17+? Perhaps, but looking around different forums and subreddits is seems like the general consensus is that the caster classes vastly outperform the martial classes in standard D&D 5e at higher levels, so perhaps this would end up being more balanced, even though with some imbalances still.

3) The crux of the matter here for me is the dual use of Permanent corruption as both a resource and a currency (and a alt damage type and a setting accumulation...Permanent Corruption is rather prolific in it's abilities it seems!). The easiest way to liken this is that mages would effectively have to sacrifice spell slots...permanently...to use magical gear. To me just reading it creates a massive disparity between mystics and martial classes. To interact with core items and rewards of the setting you might have to give up some of your capacity to use core parts of your kit...there is no way of reading that line to me that doesn't make me scratch my head. In OG you always had the option between surrendering xp or taking permanent corruption and there was a reason my players always chose the former over the latter, it just comes off as punishing some classes instead of feeling like "oh cool I finally got a really neat item"!

Yes, it's hard to get a good overview of this without detailed play testing. The casters do get a Corruption threshold that is much higher than the martial classes. And learning rituals gives you permanent Corruption when you learn them, but no temporary Corruption when you use them. It's hard to evaluate the exact game balance with all these different interactions.
 
Ugglefar
Posts: 79
Joined: Thu 04 Aug 2016, 21:17
Location: Sweden/USA

Re: Corruption for Mystics

Tue 21 Sep 2021, 17:56

HOWEVER! Neither of these are bad examples and should be nerfed in my option...but rather I see them as great concepts that should serve to put the rest on parity. In the OG ruleset the shielded traditions had due to their extensive care and training ways to circumvent accumulation of corruption in ways that the Self-taught and sorcerer didn't have access to. But they played with it in different ways. As some have pointed out their efficiency is in stark contrast to what their setting description dictates but I would rather see others 'buffed' than these 'nerfed'...give the rest options to manage corruption or expand their pools such as using a different formula for calculating threshold for wizard and symbolist etc...and while you are at it perhaps look at spell attainment rate of the Self-taught...fewer spells for a more focused toolkit is fine but end of the day, options are fun and as it stands feats are not optional, they become almost a must in the minds of my players (and perhaps others).

My initial concern with this is that you have to be very careful so the game does not end up with rules that in the end make the risk of Corruption negligible. Magic should feel dangerous when you use it in Symbaroum, and it's a difficult thing to balance so that magic doesn't feel boring, but at the same time doesn't feel like it's without any risks for your character.

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