- Feb 4, 2017
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See, this is where I'm kind of ... Annoyed? Where is it written that a caster should have low defense?
No gloves, I might see, but, ... A chain shirt, and a buckler, how's that unwieldy? A well fitted breastplate and leg guards shouldn't inhibit any amount of handwaving necessary. Now, I'm not saying full plate should be standard Mage attire, but seriously? And they say Wizards are supposed to be intelligent. I can already see a mage charging his spell behind the big steel shield shield only to quickly fling it aside as he unleashes.
I also don't believe in balancing by 'Power source'. A mage shouldn't have low armor just because he's 'Magic'. Where's my 'Basic attack spam mage' and my 'Big attack that costs resources fighter with a very weak basic attack'. Maybe the mages are the big tanks with shields and enormous HP reserves granted by dark pacts, and the Melee guys are the fragile low HP Damage spikers.
Seems like that first argument is a thematic one. The standard you are addressing arouse from Tolkien lore and the later Gygax's adaptations.
In a tapletop, imposing Somatic components(5e) lends itself to roleplaying. It is not just about mechanics, it is about everyone telling a story together.
My crafting system is purely Lore based, though it does have mathematical effects.
Mechanics are an art form that is hopefully math relevant.
I have 11 classes in my project. Your party of 4 can create thousands of group combinations. For me, not giving my Mage "high defense" was important, as it created a niche for my tanking classes to fill. It was more about yin-yang.
That said: there is a caster with high defense(and even shields). This is my Necro(cleric/mage hybrid). He can deal as much single-target DPS as the Mage, but the Mage has access to AOE DPS.
Essentially: once you get passed the Lore/Themes of your own world, it is really just a matter of not breaking your own combat system with Bad Math.