Men of Minas Tirith and the drawbacks of Advanced Cultures

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doctheweasel
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Men of Minas Tirith and the drawbacks of Advanced Cultures

Post by doctheweasel » Sat Mar 04, 2017 4:27 pm

So it's just now hitting me that the drawback for Men of Minas Tirith simulates the higher cost for Valor and Wisdom that the Rangers of the North have to pay. They have a taste of being an Advanced Culture without having all the drawbacks.

In my game, though, I don't use the modified experience point costs for Rangers and High Elves. Should I just remove it from MoMTs also? Should there be a replacement drawback to balance things out?

Thoughts?

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Southron
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Re: Men of Minas Tirith and the drawbacks of Advanced Cultures

Post by Southron » Sun Mar 12, 2017 3:48 pm

I agree with you about not using the altered experience table. Aside from some attempt to curb power gaming or have cultural balance the experience table coupled with the other drawbacks is too extreme. As cultures I like the Rangers of the North and the Men of Minas Tirith, but I really feel like I can't enjoy playing them as I feel their handicaps are forced and not fun. The one for the High Elves is not bad ( minus the altered experience chart) however, not being able to use the fellowship pool for a Ranger of the North plus longer experience gain seems almost vindictive.

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Re: Men of Minas Tirith and the drawbacks of Advanced Cultures

Post by SirGamingScotsman » Thu Mar 30, 2017 12:43 pm

I would say that it's wrong to not use the drawbacks. They are there to balance those cultures, as they are more powerful than the standard cultures, they have higher starting skills and have access to pretty powerful Virtues & Rewards.

The Drawbacks are to bring them more in line with standard cultures so they don't seem 'unfair' to play as, and also let you be able to play as fairly iconic cultures within Middle earth. That's why they are recommended to be played by players who have already gone through a character and want something a bit different.

So by ignoring the drawbacks you are giving those players an advantage over the other cultures. It would almost be like letting someone play as a Wizard or equally powerful person but just using the standard culture rules.

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Earendil
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Re: Men of Minas Tirith and the drawbacks of Advanced Cultures

Post by Earendil » Thu Mar 30, 2017 1:03 pm

SirGamingScotsman wrote:
Thu Mar 30, 2017 12:43 pm
I would say that it's wrong to not use the drawbacks. They are there to balance those cultures, as they are more powerful than the standard cultures, they have higher starting skills and have access to pretty powerful Virtues & Rewards.
That's true, of course, but the thing is a lot of people (including me) feel that High Elves and Rangers are too disadvantaged. I haven't had either of them in my game yet, but I don't intend to use the increased experience costs, as I consider their other disadvantages sufficient. (In fact, I might also allow Rangers to take points from the Fellowship Pool, but at a 3:1 ratio, i.e. 3 Fellowship points to gain 1 Hope.)

Men of Minas Tirith, however, have only one disadvantage, which is experience-related. I agree that they need something to balance them out, but I dislike experience penalties in principle, as they lead to "weaker" cultures actually ending up stronger. So I'd like to remove that disadvantage but replace it with something else. Unfortunately, I have no idea what. :?
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Re: Men of Minas Tirith and the drawbacks of Advanced Cultures

Post by Blubbo Baggins » Thu Mar 30, 2017 9:57 pm

You could try reducing their RAW max Hope by 25% - 50%. That will prevent players from getting to use Hope as much, or risk them having more Bouts of Madness. Having less Hope doesn't necessarily fit the Men of MT from a story perspective, but it would help balance them out mechanically in a very simple way.

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Re: Men of Minas Tirith and the drawbacks of Advanced Cultures

Post by Otaku-sempai » Thu Mar 30, 2017 11:08 pm

Blubbo Baggins wrote:
Thu Mar 30, 2017 9:57 pm
You could try reducing their RAW max Hope by 25% - 50%. That will prevent players from getting to use Hope as much, or risk them having more Bouts of Madness. Having less Hope doesn't necessarily fit the Men of MT from a story perspective, but it would help balance them out mechanically in a very simple way.
Maybe that does make some sense. Gondor is much diminished from its glory days. It has lost territory, the line of kings has failed, Osgiliath is reduced to a mere military outpost of Minas Tirith. Even the population is at a historic low. And things don't look to get any better.
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OZYMANDIAS: But you'd regained interest in human life...
DR. MANHATTAN: Yes, I have. I think perhaps I'll create some. Goodbye, Adrian.

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Re: Men of Minas Tirith and the drawbacks of Advanced Cultures

Post by Earendil » Fri Mar 31, 2017 12:16 pm

Otaku-sempai wrote:
Thu Mar 30, 2017 11:08 pm
Blubbo Baggins wrote:
Thu Mar 30, 2017 9:57 pm
You could try reducing their RAW max Hope by 25% - 50%. That will prevent players from getting to use Hope as much, or risk them having more Bouts of Madness. Having less Hope doesn't necessarily fit the Men of MT from a story perspective, but it would help balance them out mechanically in a very simple way.
Maybe that does make some sense. Gondor is much diminished from its glory days. It has lost territory, the line of kings has failed, Osgiliath is reduced to a mere military outpost of Minas Tirith. Even the population is at a historic low. And things don't look to get any better.
I really like that idea, and I agree it does make sense. "It is long since we had hope," as Boromir says (but that might just be in the movie). If we reduce the MoMT's Hope to 6 + Heart instead of 8 + Heart, that makes them equal to Dwarves and Dunlendings, which seems fine to me.
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Re: Men of Minas Tirith and the drawbacks of Advanced Cultures

Post by atgxtg » Fri Mar 31, 2017 1:09 pm

What if instead of the increased XP and Hope restrictions an Ranger just had to spend 1 XP whenever he drew Hope from the Fellowship Pool? Wouldn't that have about the same net effect (spend less Hope, and spend more XP) without being as complicated? It would seem to me to be more fun, and make the whole thing a matter of choice.

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Re: Men of Minas Tirith and the drawbacks of Advanced Cultures

Post by doctheweasel » Fri Mar 31, 2017 7:41 pm

atgxtg wrote:
Fri Mar 31, 2017 1:09 pm
What if instead of the increased XP and Hope restrictions an Ranger just had to spend 1 XP whenever he drew Hope from the Fellowship Pool? Wouldn't that have about the same net effect (spend less Hope, and spend more XP) without being as complicated? It would seem to me to be more fun, and make the whole thing a matter of choice.
I don't think the Ranger Fellowship Pool drawback thematically fits with Men of Minas Tirith. Rangers are solitary, so it makes sense that they would have trouble connecting with others. MoMTs on the other hand have more solidarity and camaraderie with each other. They fight the shadow together.

I definitely like reducing the base Hope to 6. Combined with the free re-roll ability, that speaks to a culture that has greatness in it despite seeing their doom right outside the gates.

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