No Power Points Setting Rule and Bolt

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moonowl67
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No Power Points Setting Rule and Bolt

#1 Postby moonowl67 » Tue Jan 05, 2016 7:30 am

So, after months of playing the Fantasy Companion rules adapted to the No Power Points Setting Rule, a player discovered why we were having such trouble with the Bolt Spell. I thought I'd share what he helped us to realize a key rule, and maybe prevent others from making the same mistake.

Simply put, the core rules Bolt power allows for an extra die of damage INSTEAD of multiple Bolts being fired. The Fantasy Companion rules allow for multiple Bolts to be fired with the extra die of damage:

Core Book, Bolt, Page 110...

► Additional Damage: The caster may instead cast a single 3d6 bolt for 2 Power Points. He may not cast multiple bolts when using this ability.

Fantasy Book, Bolt, Page 31...

► Additional Damage: The character may also increase the damage to 3d6 by doubling the Power Point cost per bolt. This may be combined with the additional bolts, so firing 3 bolts of 3d6 damage costs 6 Power Points.

If you are going with the No Power Points Rule setting, then I recommend using Core Rules version of Bolt, to keep that power balanced with other weapons and powers: Don't make the same mistake that I did!!

Many of you probably noticed that, but I'm sure that some of you may not have ...

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Re: No Power Points Setting Rule and Bolt

#2 Postby Zadmar » Tue Jan 05, 2016 7:44 am

It's because the Fantasy Companion is an older publication, so Bolt still works the same way as the previous version of Savage Worlds (SWEX). The power was changed in Savage Worlds Deluxe (SWD).

You'll note that several other things were also added to SWD from the Fantasy Companion, such as the races and race creation rules, a couple of the Edges, some of the powers, trapping guidelines, etc. Hopefully at some point there will be a second version of the Fantasy Companion that better complements the current version of the core rules.
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Re: No Power Points Setting Rule and Bolt

#3 Postby moonowl67 » Tue Jan 05, 2016 8:34 am

That's good to know. Thanks, Zadmar.

In these tough times, my players are picking up the cheaper rule book, which happens to be Savage Worlds Deluxe . . . and also turns out to be the more correct version!

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Re: No Power Points Setting Rule and Bolt

#4 Postby Jounichi » Tue Jan 05, 2016 2:20 pm

One thing I noticed about Bolt with the No Power Points rule is there's almost no point to only casting two. The penalty is the same because you halve the PP cost and round down, so it literally boils down to how many dice to you want to risk rolling a 1 on.
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Re: No Power Points Setting Rule and Bolt

#5 Postby Ilina_Young » Wed Jan 06, 2016 12:24 am

if you want to cast 3 bolts that each do an Extra d6. you are technically tacking on a -3 to the roll because you are using a 6 point power option. the key is to remember the adjusted cost and see how it affects things. and 3d6 for 3 shots a round, isn't any more powerful than what you can do for 27 Rounds of a Laser Minigun's ammo in the Deluxe Edition.

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Re: No Power Points Setting Rule and Bolt

#6 Postby moonowl67 » Wed Jan 06, 2016 10:59 am

At my gaming table, we have found that over-looking the SWDeluxe rule causes Bolt to be the king of all combats. Applying the revised rule scales things down a bit for Bolt and encourages the mages to try other powers and tactics in those Fast, Fun, Furious 'negotiations."

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Re: No Power Points Setting Rule and Bolt

#7 Postby Jounichi » Wed Jan 06, 2016 11:15 am

Ilina_Young wrote:if you want to cast 3 bolts that each do an Extra d6. you are technically tacking on a -3 to the roll because you are using a 6 point power option. the key is to remember the adjusted cost and see how it affects things. and 3d6 for 3 shots a round, isn't any more powerful than what you can do for 27 Rounds of a Laser Minigun's ammo in the Deluxe Edition.

That's -3 to each Spellcasting die and the Wild die; which is a lot. I imagine that's one of the reasons why in SWD you can no longer cast 3 3d6 bolts at once. That, and it's really not hard to spam it for combat at higher ranks.

I haven't played with the No Power Points rule, but I don't think I like it. Healing is done at -2 before you factor anyone's Wounds in, which means you practically need Healer to even be competent. Well, Power Preparation helps, but it doesn't work on everything or help all the time. Greater Healing (the basic version) with preparation and Healer is still no less than a -2 penalty, and if you want to try and heal a permanent injury it's -6.

I'd rather have a mana pool.
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Re: No Power Points Setting Rule and Bolt

#8 Postby moonowl67 » Wed Jan 06, 2016 11:34 am

My gaming table likes No Power points because the mages and healers don't have to keep track of 'shots.' More tactics and less resource management.

Healing is a little more difficult, yes ... with an adjusted TN of 5, instead of 4 (3 power points is -1 to the roll, I find it easier to simply adjust the TN). So, if the designated healer does take an extra round (most don't) he brings it back to a TN of 4. However, if he becomes a dedicated heater and takes the Healer Edge, he has another +2! That's not so bad . . .

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Re: No Power Points Setting Rule and Bolt

#9 Postby Clint » Wed Jan 13, 2016 2:36 pm

Jounichi wrote:One thing I noticed about Bolt with the No Power Points rule is there's almost no point to only casting two. The penalty is the same because you halve the PP cost and round down, so it literally boils down to how many dice to you want to risk rolling a 1 on.


Multiple bolts are treated as individual 1 PP castings not a single casting at 3 PPs, so they would all have a 0 modifier.

Rolling multiple Trait dice is the drawback to multiple bolts. Not just because of rolling a 1 on any one of the dice (which would cause all the bolts to fail), but because the roll results are applied for each bolt, not the best of them. So a raise, success, and failure casting three bolts with no PPs, still leaves the character Shaken with all maintained powers dropped. And two failures would be Shaken and a wound (since it's possible to suffer damage from backlash by rolling a 1 thus making it a damaging effect).

As an aside, that also means a character firing multiple bolts who rolls multiple 1's on his Trait die, would suffer 2d6 damage for each 1 rolled.
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Re: No Power Points Setting Rule and Bolt

#10 Postby SteelDraco » Wed Jan 13, 2016 2:46 pm

moonowl67 wrote:My gaming table likes No Power points because the mages and healers don't have to keep track of 'shots.' More tactics and less resource management.

Healing is a little more difficult, yes ... with an adjusted TN of 5, instead of 4 (3 power points is -1 to the roll, I find it easier to simply adjust the TN). So, if the designated healer does take an extra round (most don't) he brings it back to a TN of 4. However, if he becomes a dedicated heater and takes the Healer Edge, he has another +2! That's not so bad . . .

Keep in mind that the Healing spell's roll also suffers a penalty equal to the target's current Wounds. Healing someone with three Wounds would be a -3 to the roll, in addition to the penalty from the No Power Points rule. Healing is pretty tough if you use that rule.

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Re: No Power Points Setting Rule and Bolt

#11 Postby Jounichi » Wed Jan 13, 2016 3:44 pm

Clint wrote:
Jounichi wrote:One thing I noticed about Bolt with the No Power Points rule is there's almost no point to only casting two. The penalty is the same because you halve the PP cost and round down, so it literally boils down to how many dice to you want to risk rolling a 1 on.


Multiple bolts are treated as individual 1 PP castings not a single casting at 3 PPs, so they would all have a 0 modifier.

Rolling multiple Trait dice is the drawback to multiple bolts. Not just because of rolling a 1 on any one of the dice (which would cause all the bolts to fail), but because the roll results are applied for each bolt, not the best of them. So a raise, success, and failure casting three bolts with no PPs, still leaves the character Shaken with all maintained powers dropped. And two failures would be Shaken and a wound (since it's possible to suffer damage from backlash by rolling a 1 thus making it a damaging effect).

As an aside, that also means a character firing multiple bolts who rolls multiple 1's on his Trait die, would suffer 2d6 damage for each 1 rolled.

I figured the results would be applied for individual bolts. It's been mentioned in other threads how a caster could be rendered Shaken with Wounds if they roll multiple 1s while casting simultaneously, but I did not realize casting multiple 2d6 bolts would still be a penalty of zero. Good to know.
"Rush not in to fights. Long is the war. Only by surviving it, will you prevail." -Yoda

"Wise man once say, 'forgiveness is divine, but never pay full price for late pizza.'" -Michelangelo


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