Post by dungeondevil on Feb 8, 2021 19:05:54 GMT -5
I haven't yet playtested the data in this table yet, but at first blush, the numbers seem hyperbolically absurd. Anything over four looks outrageous. SR25? SR45? REALLY?? And don't try to gaslight me into thinking that DARO solves the problem! What have your experiences been with the saving throw levels in actual over-the-table play?
Fantasy RPGs usually tell us that the heroic should be possible (though not necessarily quotidian, mind you). After all, Howard Pyle would have us believe that a Mediaeval Englishman was able to split an arrow in twain from a considerable range and strike the bull's eye!
Consider the coin at over 150 yards example. Most people would struggle to even see such a target, and few nonmagical weapons have that sort of range. (A standard longbow has a range of 100 yards). The ranges are called 'Extreme' and 'Phenomenal' for a reason.
A level 10+ archer specialist, buffed with a Double Double on DEX, armed with some sort of extraordinary weapon which somehow is accurate to that distance, and with a talent that knocks the SR required down by a level - that's the sort of combination required to pull off such a spectacular shot, and even then they could roll a 3 and miss.
Anyone without those sorts of options should probably try to close the range to 100 yards or less. The required SR levels quickly drop off.
Is this a design flaw? Many RPGs have starting characters struggle against relatively modest foes, and require experience/training and better gear to be able to take on dragons. It seems to me that some of these shots are in dragonslaying territory. Not as in 'this will help you kill a dragon' (although if you go by the trope of a small missing scale, it might) but as in 'this would be a truly heroic feat of archery to accomplish'.
It is also important to note that even if you miss your opponent, your missile damage still counts for your side's combat total. Even if a character fails the SR, they are still contributing to the fight.
I recall my archery class in college. Using a 35# recurve bow, without sights, I was easily hitting a standard archery target, about 4 feet in diameter, at 50 yards halfway through the semester. By the end of that semester, my arrow cluster was inside a 12 inch ring. So, with moderate, regular practice, a 4th to 5th level saving throw should be within reach of the dedicated archer.
Looking at the table, it seems a simple mathemagical progression was made. There's nothing saying you can't modify the table to better fit your game, players and play style. That's probably the approach I'd take, personally.
I'll have the deep-fried battered pixie with balrog dipping sauce and a Hobgoblin ale.