Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

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Havelok_
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Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by Havelok_ » June 9th, 2016, 3:24 pm

Though I've played Numenera proper many a time and run a few games, one thing that inevitably confuses players is how HP is bound to your three pools.

Changing the core rules slightly to use pools only for actions simplifies things immensely, and it seems to work pretty well in-game in the patch.

I'm still not quite clear on how Health is determined (is it a formula based upon someone's maximum might pool?) but I think it was the right choice, so, bravo and so fourth.

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by Sithwist » June 9th, 2016, 3:35 pm

Can't agree more. That was one of the things I was confused about playing the beta the first time through.
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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by Firkraag » June 9th, 2016, 3:43 pm

I wouldn't say it confused me, as I didn't like it. I get Monte's reasoning to try implementing it, but I don't think Death Spiral will ever be popular in gaming.
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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by anonymous6059 » June 9th, 2016, 6:57 pm

Firkraag wrote:I wouldn't say it confused me, as I didn't like it. I get Monte's reasoning to try implementing it, but I don't think Death Spiral will ever be popular in gaming.
Oh well. I was just starting to get used to it and now they did a way with it. :(
I'm sure it is for the best though.

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by sear » June 9th, 2016, 7:36 pm

That is promising to hear. We've been making a lot of systems tweaks and changes (health is the biggest, but not only change) and there are likely more to come too as we continue to balance and playtest.

Long story short, though, health solves a lot of design challenges by letting us much better balance the strength of abilities, items, armor, etc. across the entire game and not worry as much about if a player hasn't been managing their stat pools perfectly when going into a fight.

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by Dark_Kain » June 10th, 2016, 1:20 am

sear wrote:That is promising to hear. We've been making a lot of systems tweaks and changes (health is the biggest, but not only change) and there are likely more to come too as we continue to balance and playtest.

Long story short, though, health solves a lot of design challenges by letting us much better balance the strength of abilities, items, armor, etc. across the entire game and not worry as much about if a player hasn't been managing their stat pools perfectly when going into a fight.
I would like to point that, in my humble opionion, the introduction of health leaves might in a super shacky position at the moment.

From a mechanical prospective it is no more the most important "health" pool and given that you can fight just plain better with speed (due to speed opening the ability to use every weapon type and speed defense being the most important) it has little reason to exists at all.
The fact that 1 point = 1 level of effort does not help the cause, since 4-6 points can probably cover any corner situation where you absolutely need might and after that you can safely dump the pool entirely.

Maybe the speed pool should be limited to only ranged weapons and light melee weapon attacks, and some very attractive options should be added for melee medium and heavy weapons skills.
And/Or some sort of self-heal might-based option ("shrug it off, it's only a flesh wound") should be added to the game while being the overall most effective pointwise.



From a story prospective it has the least number of skills related (I'd say the only one that promises to be used in checks is smashing, everything else is either intellect/speed dependent or offers passive effects and so it is might-unrelated) and few skill checks that are also the least interesting in a exploration/mystery/investigation story setting.

More might based skills (that actually have in game checks) that are important in an exploration settings should be added: swimming, climbing, jumping would be by far the most evident.



In the end try picking a Jack in the character creation screen and, while you are navigating the options, ask yourself if you would like to make him/her might-based. If you're asking yourself why the option even exists (like it happened to me yesterday) then something is probably not working.

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by kilobug » June 10th, 2016, 1:48 am

Interesting move, probably does make things easier for both players and designers, but that raises a few questions to me (I did read Numenéra corebook and some supplements, but didn't play the beta since I'm a Linux and GOG person).

How do you handle damage to specific pools (mental attack damaging Intellect pool, some poisons damaging Speed pool, ...) they still directly remove from the pool, and then remove from Health if the pool is at 0 ?

And does the "damage track" still exist, and if yes how ?

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by Flower of Pock-Lips » June 10th, 2016, 7:45 am

I haven't had a chance to play the new update yet, but I'm not sold on the addition of health as its own stat pool. On the one hand, it's a not-uncommon house rule for Numenera, used to avoid the so-called "Death Spiral" and to ease confusion about how the system works. On the other hand, the inclusion stat pools was a deliberate design choice on the part of Monte Cook, and it feels strange to want to commit to the Cypher System and the Numenera setting, and then reverse some of the (imo) more fundamental design decisions that underpin that system.

This change trivializes the dilemma of spending Effort, which is usually offset (as this blogpost argues) by a combination of cyphers, the plentiful ways of restoring points in depleted stat pools, and the knowledge that you can spend XP to reroll. That's something that (correct me if I'm wrong) you can't do in T:ToN, which makes me wonder if the problem is that the game has too little commitment to the Cypher System, rather than too much. Of course, allowing players to spend XP to reroll and having the character progression more closely resemble the one laid out in the Numenera corebook means totally restructuring the way that XP is distributed throughout the game, so that a character might accrue only ~192 XP in a typical playthrough.

I'd like to ask the devs: when running your PnP Numenera sessions, which house rules do you employ, if any? Do you use a health pool?
Last edited by Flower of Pock-Lips on June 10th, 2016, 12:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by Brother None » June 10th, 2016, 10:12 am

Flower of Pock-Lips wrote:This change seriously trivializes the dilemma of spending Effort, which is usually offset (as this blogpost argues) by a combination of cyphers, the plentiful ways of restoring points in depleted stat pools, and the knowledge that you can spend XP to reroll.
Note the amount of stat pools you have in the game are not necessarily equivalent to what you would expect in Numenera, which is part of our overall rebalance. We're still tweaking but I'd recommend playing the beta to see how it works, our pacing for the amount of stat pools you have and how you replenish it means that spending Effort is still a very significant decisions.
Dark_Kain wrote:Maybe the speed pool should be limited to only ranged weapons and light melee weapon attacks, and some very attractive options should be added for melee medium and heavy weapons skills.
Weapons don't work quite the way you seem to be thinking. You can't use either/or stat pools with weapons, you use one of Might, Speed or (very rarely) Intellect. Lighter weapons generally use Speed, Heavy weapons generally use Might, Medium Weapons use Speed for some (Ranged, bladed), and Might for others (blunt).
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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by HarveyV » June 10th, 2016, 9:54 pm

you people just took a fat fucking shit all over the system.

i thought that the colors for the pools was fun and unique, and you made the health bar red.

you fucking suck. oh my god. i am legitimately fucking disgusted by this. you fucking ruined it.

why

why

why

why

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by Havelok_ » June 10th, 2016, 10:11 pm

HarveyV wrote:you people just took a fat fucking shit all over the system.

i thought that the colors for the pools was fun and unique, and you made the health bar red.

you fucking suck. oh my god. i am legitimately fucking disgusted by this. you fucking ruined it.

why

why

why

why
They already answered your question. It makes the game more accessible for new players, and allows for easier balance across all game systems. Do you think Baldur's Gate had a 100% faithful version of DnD second edition running under the hood? No, it was modified for video game format. Same goes for all the Infinity engine games. If you want to play pure Numenera, you should stick to tabletop play.

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by Flower of Pock-Lips » June 11th, 2016, 1:58 am

Havelok_ wrote:They already answered your question. It makes the game more accessible for new players, and allows for easier balance across all game systems. Do you think Baldur's Gate had a 100% faithful version of DnD second edition running under the hood? No, it was modified for video game format. Same goes for all the Infinity engine games. If you want to play pure Numenera, you should stick to tabletop play.
I don't think sear actually said that the change was to make the game more accessible to new players. At least, I hope that wasn't why the change was made. The stat pools system is non-intuitive for people who are used to DnD-based CRPG's, but it is always possible to communicate these concepts clearly through better tutorials, loading screen tips, reinforcement of game mechanics with gameplay, etc., and it is the responsibility of the game designers to do so.

Balance is a more legit reason to change the mechanic, I guess, but really the only question that matters is, "Is it more fun this way?"
Last edited by Flower of Pock-Lips on June 11th, 2016, 3:31 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by Dark_Kain » June 11th, 2016, 2:33 am

Brother None wrote:
Flower of Pock-Lips wrote:
Dark_Kain wrote:Maybe the speed pool should be limited to only ranged weapons and light melee weapon attacks, and some very attractive options should be added for melee medium and heavy weapons skills.
Weapons don't work quite the way you seem to be thinking. You can't use either/or stat pools with weapons, you use one of Might, Speed or (very rarely) Intellect. Lighter weapons generally use Speed, Heavy weapons generally use Might, Medium Weapons use Speed for some (Ranged, bladed), and Might for others (blunt).
I see all swords working with speed pool no problems. Including the heavy, two handed ones.
You find one after the first battle, there is another sold at the first vendor. Incidentally this means that, after computing ranged ones, the starting heavy weapons you have access to are speed-predominant.

I rest by my point that the might pool in the current game system feels an aftertought. (a problem you probably didn't have to consider before because might WAS the HP pool, and enhce always relevant to the gameplay).

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by monocle » June 11th, 2016, 3:51 am

Decoupling health from the pools is an insult to a player's intelligence. "Oh, my god people are so stupid they'll get confused if they don't see HP". From design standpoint you're missing excellent battle design opportunities when your oomfy might oriented fighter gets impaired quickly against int targeting attacks. Why it takes 10 seconds to design a complex combat encounter in PnP and you've got "complications". Why are people fine with the pools as they are intended to work in PnP and in PC format it's "OMFG let's derive health!"? No build will stand out now, just pump up endurance and you're universally good against any threat. A large portion of what makes Numenera stand out has been taken away. I'm wondering how much more you're going to vivisect Numenera PnP in favor of stupidity.
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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by HarveyV » June 11th, 2016, 6:26 am

Havelok_ wrote:
HarveyV wrote:you people just took a fat fucking shit all over the system.

i thought that the colors for the pools was fun and unique, and you made the health bar red.

you fucking suck. oh my god. i am legitimately fucking disgusted by this. you fucking ruined it.

why

why

why

why
They already answered your question. It makes the game more accessible for new players, and allows for easier balance across all game systems. Do you think Baldur's Gate had a 100% faithful version of DnD second edition running under the hood? No, it was modified for video game format. Same goes for all the Infinity engine games. If you want to play pure Numenera, you should stick to tabletop play.
Baldur's Gate is pretty fucking faithful. If you read the manual, it uses 90% of the rules.
monocle wrote:Decoupling health from the pools is an insult to a player's intelligence. "Oh, my god people are so stupid they'll get confused if they don't see HP". From design standpoint you're missing excellent battle design opportunities when your oomfy might oriented fighter gets impaired quickly against int targeting attacks. Why it takes 10 seconds to design a complex combat encounter in PnP and you've got "complications". Why are people fine with the pools as they are intended to work in PnP and in PC format it's "OMFG let's derive health!"? No build will stand out now, just pump up endurance and you're universally good against any threat. A large portion of what makes Numenera stand out has been taken away. I'm wondering how much more you're going to vivisect Numenera PnP in favor of stupidity.

Don't forget that this now strongly incentivises minmaxing.

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by Dark_Kain » June 11th, 2016, 7:37 am

Havelok_ wrote:They already answered your question. It makes the game more accessible for new players, and allows for easier balance across all game systems. Do you think Baldur's Gate had a 100% faithful version of DnD second edition running under the hood? No, it was modified for video game format. Same goes for all the Infinity engine games. If you want to play pure Numenera, you should stick to tabletop play.
Baldur's gate is not a fair comparison because it was still very faithful to the AD&D 2nd edition game system.
Up to the point of being perfectly faithful in the most criticized and bizantine aspects of the game systems such as negative thac0 and AC.

Decoupling health from might/speed/intellect means changing the purpose of the core of the Numenera rules: the pools, the edges, the effort and everything that refers to this changes drastically in purpose and this ripples everywere in the system.

If Baldur's gate were a game in wich you don't throw virtual d20s, but instead draw tarots cards to randomize results; where armor reduce the damage inflicted instead of reducing the to hit chance; and spells are not memorized by spellcasters and forget by casting but instead had half-hour long cooldowns, would you still consider it a 2nd edition Advanced Dungeons & Dragons game?
From my experience of a Cypher System player, here we are talking of this level of distance from the ogiginal Numenera game system (not setting, not flavour, nor spirit, just rule system).

BTW all of this does not make Torment a bad game: it can be a fine or even an excellent game even if it drop the Numenera/Cypher system entirely.
However creating dumpstats and imbalance does, and at the moment from my experience I humbly believe that the game is suffering from this.

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by Colin McComb » June 11th, 2016, 9:36 am

Our systems guys know they've got some balance to work on. The Health bar was added with the approval of MCG.

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by HarveyV » June 11th, 2016, 10:58 am

You still betrayed the system. Sorry. Im sure your normiebucks will keep you warm at night. Never backing a fucking inxile project again.

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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by Firkraag » June 11th, 2016, 11:27 am

HarveyV wrote:You still betrayed the system. Sorry. Im sure your normiebucks will keep you warm at night. Never backing a fucking inxile project again.
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Re: Making Health its own stat is an excellent move.

Post by Tadziomencel » June 11th, 2016, 12:21 pm

Gotta face with the anti-health crowd. While I too see that some compromises might be needed for cRPG I think that how the pools partially were health was a pretty important part of the Numenera system. While this may still make for a good game because of story, tides etc. I think this is a partial loss of some originality of the system that could have made the game more fun, once players learn it.

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