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Revised Saving Throws tables


Demivrgvs

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There could be tons of things to say on this matter, but I'll try to be short.

 

There are many aspects I don't like about AD&D/vanilla's tables, such as:

* inconsistencies (e.g. 1st lvl thief is better than fighter in each and every save type, but later on he becomes worse in almost everything)

* nonsensical assignments (e.g. why the hell thieves have the worst saves vs. breath of all classes?!?)

* non linear progression (e.g. fighters get +2 to saves at 5th and 9th lvl instead of the usual +1, saves vs breath get +3 at those lvls!)

* different caps (e.g. fighters reach their cap really fast at 17th lvl, while mages still improve their saves at 21th lvl)

 

But there are things of AD&D tables I like, such as:

* intermediate save values (within 3E there are only two types of saves, good or bad, with no room for "normal" saves)

* same progression rate for each save type (3E makes good saves improve faster, which means at high levels good saves get even better, and bad saves even worse)

 

The following table (which can be discussed) indicates for each class group if they excel or not in a particular type of save.

 

Class group: Death - Wand - Poly - Breath - Spell

Warrior: good - bad - good - normal - bad

Rogue: bad - good - bad - good - normal

Priest: good - normal - normal - bad - normal

Mage: bad - good - bad - normal - good

Monk: normal - normal - normal - normal - normal (might be changed to good vs all)

 

So, I've tried to study many different solutions mixing up AD&D and 3E concepts, and I ended up creating tables which take everything mentioned above into account and still manage to look very similar to vanilla's ones.

 

The following examples should give you a quick but exhaustive overview of the whole revision.

 

Saves at 1st level (Death/Wand/Poly/Breath/Spell)

Vanilla - Warrior: 14/16/15/17/17 - Rogue: 13/14/12/16/15 - Priests: 10/14/13/16/15 - Mage: 14/11/13/15/12

Revised - Warrior: 13/17/13/15/17 - Rogue: 17/13/17/13/15 - Priests: 13/15/13/17/15 - Mage: 17/13/17/15/13

 

Every odd level you gain +1 to all saves.

 

Maximized saves

Vanilla - Warriors: 3/5/4/4/6 - Rogue: 8/4/7/11/5 - Priest: 2/6/5/8/7 - Mage: 8/3/5/7/4

Revised - Warriors: 4/8/4/6/8 - Rogue: 8/4/8/4/6 - Priest: 4/6/4/8/6 - Mage: 8/4/8/6/4

 

If you wanted to compare the whole progression table of vanilla's warriors with the one I'm suggesting to ship with KR, here they are.

 

LVL: Vanilla saves - Revised saves (Death/Wand/Poly/Breath/Spell)

 

01: 14/16/15/17/17 - 13/17/13/15/17

02: 14/16/15/17/17 - 13/17/13/15/17

03: 13/15/14/16/16 - 12/16/12/14/16

04: 13/15/14/16/16 - 12/16/12/14/16

05: 11/13/12/13/14 - 11/15/11/13/15

06: 11/13/12/13/14 - 11/15/11/13/15

07: 10/12/11/12/13 - 10/14/10/12/14

08: 10/12/11/12/13 - 10/14/10/12/14

09: 08/10/09/09/11 - 09/13/09/11/13

10: 08/10/09/09/11 - 09/13/09/11/13

11: 07/09/08/08/10 - 08/12/08/10/12

12: 07/09/08/08/10 - 08/12/08/10/12

13: 05/07/06/05/08 - 07/11/07/09/11

14: 05/07/06/05/08 - 07/11/07/09/11

15: 04/06/05/04/07 - 06/10/06/08/10

16: 04/06/05/04/07 - 06/10/06/08/10

17: 03/05/04/04/06 - 05/09/15/07/09

18: 03/05/04/04/06 - 05/09/05/07/09

19: 03/05/04/04/06 - 04/08/04/06/08

20: 03/05/04/04/06 - 04/08/04/06/08

 

What do you think?

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I think it's a wonderful idea!

 

The new saving throw progression table it's a lot more clean and elegant and it makes much more sense than vanilla's one, also i especially like the fact that at low level saving throws tend to be slightly better than vanilla and at high level they are slightly worse, in my playtrough i always find that at high level making a saving throw it's almost trivial, while at the beginning of the game (i'm talking about bg 1) it's nearly impossible to save.

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Priests - I'd swap death bonus for spells. High wisdom is supposed to protect against mental affects, and those would be spell saves.

Mages - normal saves vs breath, but poor vs death? I don't even know what to say, because there is little room for changing that.

Monks - technically, they should get all saves at good...

 

I like it, but will this component affect foes as well?
By itself - no, and neither will most of the other kits' changes.

I consider solving it by adding a Apply Kit Revisions' Changes to All Creatures component to go late in the install order.

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Not sure if this falls within KR's jurisdiction, but it would be nice if you rebalanced the saving throw bonuses one receives from attribute points to make high INT or WIS a viable choice on a fighter to improve mind saves,

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The new saving throw progression table it's a lot more clean and elegant and it makes much more sense than vanilla's one, also i especially like the fact that at low level saving throws tend to be slightly better than vanilla and at high level they are slightly worse, in my playtrough i always find that at high level making a saving throw it's almost trivial, while at the beginning of the game (i'm talking about bg 1) it's nearly impossible to save.
Yeah, I actually tried to stress that aspect more (aka making low lvl saves better and high lvl ones less godly), but I couldn't find a good progression rate to fit it. I wrote down various solutions, such as making saves cap at an earlier lvl, or having characters start with better saves and then get less improvements in their whole career (e.g. a +6 bonus compared to the current +9), but I wasn't fully convinced.

 

In the end I thought my current solution was a good compromise between vanilla's mess and a complete revolution.

 

Priests - I'd swap death bonus for spells. High wisdom is supposed to protect against mental affects, and those would be spell saves.

Mages - normal saves vs breath, but poor vs death? I don't even know what to say, because there is little room for changing that.

Monks - technically, they should get all saves at good...

Priests: I'm torn on this matter. Ideally there should be a bonus to mind-affecting spells granted by WIS stat itself, which would make priest get good saves against both death and mind-affecting spells. I also decided to opt for good saves vs. death because the end result was more similar to vanilla's table, and still going in the right direction. You may notice high level clerics will get a -2 penalty to death/poison saves compared to vanilla's table (4 instead of 2), and a +1 bonus to saves vs. spells (6 instead of 7).

 

Mages: I share your doubt indeed. I opted for normal reflex-based saves only because they go around completely unarmored (warrior have the same saves while wearing heavy armor, while priests have bad saves to simulate their inferior "armor training"), and I thought keeping all saves balanced on their own between classes was a good idea (aka for each good save type there's a bad one), but I could be wrong. We may instead assign mages more bad saves and consider it a class disadvantage (vice versa for monks), but both solutions make sense imo.

 

Monks: see above, but you do have a point. On a side note, monks currently get a separate +2 to saves vs. spells at 1st lvl, making them match mage's table when it comes to mind-affecting saves, and then a +1 bonus to all saves at 9th lvl, which pretty much means they already get good saves on every save type.

 

Not sure if this falls within KR's jurisdiction, but it would be nice if you rebalanced the saving throw bonuses one receives from attribute points to make high INT or WIS a viable choice on a fighter to improve mind saves,
That's beyond our possibilities. Only hacking the exe with ToBEx could achieve that. I would indeed welcome such improvement, but with the current tables the STAT-related bonuses should be relatively small to avoid good saves becoming godly.

 

If STAT-related bonuses will ever be implemented via hacks/tweaks the best solution would be to make the standard tables slightly worse (e.g. take the current tables and make all values worse by 2 points), and then allow STATs to matter more (e.g. from +1 to +4 bonus depending of the STAT value).

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I like the idea of making saving throws more logical, as much as can be done. One thing I noted, however, is that all classes except warrior-types have worse overall saving throws at 1st level.

 

Here are the 1st lvl average saves for each type in vanilla:

Warriors: 15.8

Rogues: 14

Priests 13.6

Wizards: 13

Monks: 13.2

 

The revised saving throws give every class an average save of 15 (except maybe monks, if you give them all "good" saves). So, it's essentially a -2 overall save penalty for 1st level wizards, and a nearly +2 bonus for warriors. Low level mages are already fragile enough (low hp, no armor, only a few spells per day), it seems that this would nerf one of their few advantages, better low-level saving throws.

 

Edit: That should be a "nearly +1 bonus for warriors", not +2.

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I like the idea of making saving throws more logical, as much as can be done. One thing I noted, however, is that all classes except warrior-types have worse overall saving throws at 1st level.

 

Here are the 1st lvl average saves for each type in vanilla:

Warriors: 15.8

Rogues: 14

...

Sorry, but you do understand that lower save throws are better ?
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@AstroBryGuy, welcome on G3! I guess I have to say thanks to BGEE if I see so many new players around.

 

Sorry, but you do understand that lower save throws are better ?
He does, that's why he is correctly saying that warriors end up with better saves within KR at low levels while non-warriors have slightly worse saves.

 

Now, regarding the whole thing, I'm sympathetic to what the new Guy is saying. I do had my reasons to use the current values (not to mention mages still have great saves vs. spell and at low levels the most threatening disabling effects like charm, confusion and fear all require saves vs. spell), but let's see...

 

One thing I absolutely want to avoid is making maximized saves better than vanilla's ones. With the current KR progression rate when you reach the cap all classes have saves extremely similar to those they were getting in vanilla. Any expert BG player will tell you that we can't make those saves any better because they are already too good (that's what made me add tons of save penalties within SR, though SRv4 will handle them much much better imo).

 

What the above means is that if we want to improve saves at low levels we need to slow down the progression rate and/or impose an earlier cap to make sure the maximized saves do not become too good. For example we could improve the starting saves by 2 points, but slow down the progression from +1 every 2 levels to +1 every 3 levels, maybe capping at level 18, or we could opt for a less drastic change such as improving starting saves by 1 while making them cap at level 17 instead of the current 19.

 

The two things we need to discuss before messing with the tables are:

1) low level saves

2) maxed out saves

 

1) Are the current values not performing well? Do characters tend to fail too many important saves?

2) Are the current values performing too well? Do characters tend to successfully make too many saves?

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Ahh... got that now.

1) Are the current values not performing well? Do characters tend to fail too many important saves?

2) Are the current values performing too well? Do characters tend to successfully make too many saves?

Well, I say that we can slow down the progression sure, but not the cap, as that would lead to needs to use every trick in the book, just to keep the saves nominal(every group save+ spell just to fight a fight vs an enemy type, no matter what level you are on), and that's bad in my book. And to me, the cap should actually be zero or less, not +7-8 like it's in multiple of them in vanilla, let alone the +11 that rogues got.

 

How the enemy groups are supposed to fight groups of characters that are on level 20-30... they kill them with enough hits, not with one darn save vs. x death spell hit. This is what the group too needs to do too... as they need to stay alive to deliver the hits.

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In my opinion, the things what AstroBryGuy mentioned might be right, especially in case of the lower level saving throws.

 

But I think that it is not a big deal because the period at 1st level, for example, is really really short in terms of playing time. Most players would spend much more times with characters who reach at mid-high levels during playing game, so that we would be better to focus on that situations' balance. In other words, I'd personally agree with Demi's suggested Saving Throws tables.

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Thanks for the welcome! I hadn't played D&D in a long time (I started back in the days when there were three classes: Fighting Men, Magic Users, and Clerics :-) ), but BGEE re-sparked my interest.

 

I love the ideas in the Kit Revisions! Giving Fighters some actual abilities and making the Paladins not so front-loaded in terms of abilities is nice.

 

I do like the concept of a more uniform and logical save system, and at high BG1 and BG2 levels, the differences are minor and mostly inconsequential (+1 here, -1 there) for mages. I suppose one would have to see what other edits for mages get included in KR before making a final judgement, but the net effect to 1st level mages is equivalent to penalties ranging from -1 to -4 for all saves but Breath. It just seems like a significant hit to the class when they are at their weakest relative to other classes to also nerf their saving throws (while also buffing warriors at those early levels).

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Looking at it, the +2 vs saves at the start for Paladin's is a little too heavy to me, how about splitting it up to +1 and another one later ? As you gave them spell casting at level 4 instead of lv 9... and all.

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I do like the concept of a more uniform and logical save system, and at high BG1 and BG2 levels, the differences are minor and mostly inconsequential (+1 here, -1 there) for mages. I suppose one would have to see what other edits for mages get included in KR before making a final judgement, but the net effect to 1st level mages is equivalent to penalties ranging from -1 to -4 for all saves but Breath. It just seems like a significant hit to the class when they are at their weakest relative to other classes to also nerf their saving throws (while also buffing warriors at those early levels).
As I said, you do have a point, I sympathize with this and I'm curious to know more opinions on this matter.

 

That being said, keep in mind that their saves vs. spell are still the best among all classes, and their saves vs. breath are unchanged. The "big penalty" you are pointing out only refers to saves vs. death/polymorph. What this means is that:

- without Spell Revisions saves vs. spell cover pretty much 90% of all spells, thus mages would actually have the best saves of all classes imo

- with SR installed each save type is more important but at low levels saves vs. spell and breath are the most important ones imo, especially for a mage, because the formers cover all low level save-or-else effects like charm, confusion, hold & sleep, and the latters protect precious hit points from damage dealing spells like Lightning Bolts and Fireballs. Saves vs. death/polymorph are much more important later on when Alteration and Necromancy start to get their own save-or-else spells but that doesn't really happen before you get to face 4th+ level spells.

 

Regarding mages being at their weakest within BG1, even with KR part of it will remain true imo. Leaving aside the huge improvements I've in mind for specialists, the only real thing I've in store for common mages is to make them more "viable" in terms of having much more to offer than just 1-2 spells per day. Without too many spoilers I can say that truly useful cantrips (not the pointless ones you saw within 3E) and an early use of Scribe Scrolls could go a long way to provide mages enough things to do imo.

 

Looking at it, the +2 vs saves at the start for Paladin's is a little too heavy to me, how about splitting it up to +1 and another one later ? As you gave them spell casting at level 4 instead of lv 9... and all.
I do suggested the same in the relative topic, but my main concern is that the only way to achieve that is imposing a -1 penalty at 1st lvl because the +2 bonus is hardcoded. I'm not sure I like to have the character screen display -1 penalty. :(
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Looking at it, the +2 vs saves at the start for Paladin's is a little too heavy to me, how about splitting it up to +1 and another one later ? As you gave them spell casting at level 4 instead of lv 9... and all.
I do suggested the same in the relative topic, but my main concern is that the only way to achieve that is imposing a -1 penalty at 1st lvl because the +2 bonus is hardcoded. I'm not sure I like to have the character screen display -1 penalty. :(

I see little to no problem with paladins' +2 to saves from level 1. As it stands, they'll be failing their throws fairly often regardless - BG1 isn't a game where you rely on low saves. SCS AI uses Chaos for example, with it's massive penalty. +2 extra vs spells ain't gonna save you. It's a game where few things matter in terms of protection - AC, immunities, and potions. Saving throws are a late-game luxury.

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