Author Topic: How Should We Play It  (Read 5208 times)

Offline Asinjin

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How Should We Play It
« on: December 01, 2017, 07:55:49 PM »
As Malchia posted before, here is the rule:

Negative Levels
An affected opponent takes a –1 penalty on all skill checks and ability checks, attack rolls, and saving throws, and loses 5 hit points and one effective level or Hit Die (whenever level is used in a die roll or calculation) for each negative level. A spellcaster loses one spell slot of the highest level of spells she can cast and (if applicable) one prepared spell of that level. If she has more than one spell at her highest level, she chooses which she loses. A psionic character loses access to one power per negative level from the highest level of power he can manifest; he also loses a number of power points equal to the cost of that power. If two or more powers fit these criteria, the manifester decides which one becomes inaccessible. This loss persists until the negative level is removed. Negative levels remain until 24 hours have passed or until they are removed with a spell, such as restoration. If a negative level is not removed before 24 hours have passed, the affected creature must attempt a Fortitude save (DC 10 + 1/2 draining creature’s racial HD + draining creature’s Cha modifier; the exact DC is given in the creature’s descriptive text). On a success, the negative level goes away with no harm to the creature. On a failure, the negative level goes away, but the creature’s level is also reduced by one. A separate saving throw is required for each negative level.
A character with negative levels at least equal to her current level, or drained below 1st level, is instantly slain. Depending on the creature that killed her, she may rise the next night as a monster of that kind. If not, she rises as a wight.
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Offline Asinjin

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Re: How Should We Play It
« Reply #1 on: December 01, 2017, 08:08:47 PM »
In theory, when a character gets a negative level, they lose the abilities and bonuses gained from the last level taken.  At some point in D&D history, that was how it worked.  However, that is a huge pain to calculate, and understandably, no one would take the time or wants to take the time mid fight to do that.  The rule is made to somewhat simulate what happens.  It works fairly well and is a good compromise so as not to cause lots of wasted time.

At some point, I recall that negative levels did not do hp damage.  Looking at the 2nd ed rules, that is in fact the case.  It did not do damage, but it did reduce your hp max that you would have gained from whatever levels were lost.  I do not want to go back to the 2nd ed rule of determining everything you lost, but I would like to retain that hp rule.

Instead of the 5 hp of damage per negative level, I would like it to be you lose the average amount for your class in hp from your max hp per negative level.  So a fighter would lose 6 (5.5 rounded up), etc.  Now, this could cause you to lose hp as well, if you were at or near your maximum.  This way also evens the effects of the spell, as d4 and d6 characters are more adversely effected; since the amount of damage is based on number of levels lost, and they either never or rarely get 5 per level.

The remaining question is what should happen if your characters maximum drops to 0?
1) It can't, it can only drop to 1
2) It drops to 0 and you are comatose until restored
3) You die
4) You die and are potentially turned undead as you would be if your negative levels equal you levels + HD

Opinions?
The hand that rolls the Dice rules the world.

Offline Windblade

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Re: How Should We Play It
« Reply #2 on: December 01, 2017, 08:23:16 PM »
I vote for option 1 or 2.  I think you should save 3 and 4 for when you actually lose all of your levels and not just HP.

Offline Malchia

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Re: How Should We Play It
« Reply #3 on: December 01, 2017, 09:32:08 PM »
When you lose HP, are you also losing your CON modifier for each level lost?  If not, then a character would never lose enough HP to be reduced to 0, therefore negating all these options.  The only way HP comes into play is in the unfortunate circumstance that Saladien finds himself in since he's already been reduced below 0.

HP are also irrelevant if you lose enough levels because if you're reduced to level 0, you're instantly slain regardless of how many HP you have.

Offline Asinjin

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Re: How Should We Play It
« Reply #4 on: December 01, 2017, 09:49:52 PM »
When you lose HP, are you also losing your CON modifier for each level lost?  If not, then a character would never lose enough HP to be reduced to 0, therefore negating all these options.  The only way HP comes into play is in the unfortunate circumstance that Saladien finds himself in since he's already been reduced below 0.

HP are also irrelevant if you lose enough levels because if you're reduced to level 0, you're instantly slain regardless of how many HP you have.

In my version, you would not be losing CON modifier as well.  However, you could lose enough if you have below average hp, or a below average CON.  I understand that this would not happen for most characters, but Asinjin at least would be in trouble.
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Offline Hero

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Re: How Should We Play It
« Reply #5 on: December 01, 2017, 10:46:18 PM »
I'm glad we're addressing this. I never like the negative level rules as written. Comes down really hard on spell casters (losing more hp than they could receive, spell loss, plus the equivalent of 2 levels of attack bonus) 

At some point, I recall that negative levels did not do hp damage.
I think 3.0 energy drain did not come with hp reduction.

Instead of the 5 hp of damage per negative level, I would like it to be you lose the average amount for your class in hp from your max hp per negative level.
I like this idea in concept. Gets tricky with multiclass characters though. For a fighter/wizard, what average would you use?

Offline Asinjin

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Re: How Should We Play It
« Reply #6 on: December 01, 2017, 11:15:59 PM »
I like this idea in concept. Gets tricky with multiclass characters though. For a fighter/wizard, what average would you use?

Take an average, I suppose.  d8 for a fighter /rogue.  d6 for a cleric/wizard, etc.
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Offline Malchia

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Re: How Should We Play It
« Reply #7 on: December 01, 2017, 11:24:58 PM »
What about attacks?  Does losing -1 attack per negative level mean you lose BAB?  For example, if you have 10/5 and lose 5 levels, do you lose your second attack or do you simply fight at 5/0?

Offline Windblade

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Re: How Should We Play It
« Reply #8 on: December 02, 2017, 12:58:41 AM »
I think the only proposal on the table is to change it for HP and to keep everything else as it is written.   If that is the case then it is a - to your your attack and not to your BAB so you would keep the same number of attacks.

Offline Malchia

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Re: How Should We Play It
« Reply #9 on: December 02, 2017, 01:00:49 AM »
I think the only proposal on the table is to change it for HP and to keep everything else as it is written.   If that is the case then it is a - to your your attack and not to your BAB so you would keep the same number of attacks.
Yeah, that's how I understand it too. 

Offline Hero

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Re: How Should We Play It
« Reply #10 on: December 02, 2017, 02:22:37 PM »
Take an average, I suppose.  d8 for a fighter /rogue.  d6 for a cleric/wizard, etc.
I think that's kind of messy. Not all characters evenly distribute levels between classes, e.g., Wizard 1/ Fighter 9.

How about this instead: use the character's actual average hp per level. So HP/level = (normal max hp)/(total character level), and use that as the deduct for each negative level. Easy math. No finagling what an average HD should be. Customized to an individual. Doesn't over-penalize low HD classes.

Offline Asinjin

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Re: How Should We Play It
« Reply #11 on: December 02, 2017, 05:27:14 PM »
Yeah, that's how I understand it too.

I agree.
The hand that rolls the Dice rules the world.

Offline Asinjin

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Re: How Should We Play It
« Reply #12 on: December 02, 2017, 05:27:36 PM »
I think that's kind of messy. Not all characters evenly distribute levels between classes, e.g., Wizard 1/ Fighter 9.

How about this instead: use the character's actual average hp per level. So HP/level = (normal max hp)/(total character level), and use that as the deduct for each negative level. Easy math. No finagling what an average HD should be. Customized to an individual. Doesn't over-penalize low HD classes.

I am fine with that as well if that is what everyone prefers.
The hand that rolls the Dice rules the world.

Offline Windblade

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Re: How Should We Play It
« Reply #13 on: December 02, 2017, 07:25:31 PM »
That is fine but we still need to discuss if it kills you.

Offline Hero

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Re: How Should We Play It
« Reply #14 on: December 02, 2017, 11:44:49 PM »
I don’t think negative levels should kill you unless they reduce your level to 0 or less.

This shouldn’t be an issue if you use the average hp reduction I proposed and round down. You should hit level 0 before hp are reduced to 0.

For instance, Natsu is 9th level and has 30 hp, so average hp/level = 3.33, or 3 when you round down. If he takes 8 negative levels, he will be at 6 hp and level 1. If he takes 1 more negative level he drops to level 0 and dies.

I think this removes the scenario of negative levels dropping you to 0 hp but not to level 0.