Trying to understand Demi-humans getting two primes from a designers perspective

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MythicGalea
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Trying to understand Demi-humans getting two primes from a designers perspective

Post by MythicGalea »

To elaborate, I’m trying to understand from a designers perspective the limitation of demi-humans getting two primes as opposed to humans three. Am I right in drawing a comparison to demi-human level limitations from older editions of D&D?

Merely curious.

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Re: Trying to understand Demi-humans getting two primes from a designers perspective

Post by anvil242 »

I always thought the human's 3rd prime was compensation for the demi-humans stat boosts and innate abilities

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Go0gleplex
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Re: Trying to understand Demi-humans getting two primes from a designers perspective

Post by Go0gleplex »

I believe it's a nod to popular trope and literature. Most demi-humans tend to be longer lived than humans and therefore had less drive to learn and achieve given they have plenty of time to do so, so there's no rush whereas humans who live only a half dozen decades on average are have less time and are driven to achieve quickly. So humans, who strive to improve themselves get 3 Primes to reflect this vs the more easy going demi-humans. (in terms of game mechanics, anvil is pretty much correct.)
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Marcus Aurelius
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Re: Trying to understand Demi-humans getting two primes from a designers perspective

Post by Marcus Aurelius »

Very simple. In 1stEd AD&D Demi-human were limited in class and level vs. humans because they have special abilities humans don't have. 2 Primes vs. 3 for humans is just another way of adjusting for demi humans having more innate abilities than humans
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Buttmonkey
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Re: Trying to understand Demi-humans getting two primes from a designers perspective

Post by Buttmonkey »

It's a balancing mechanic to substitute for the evil of demihuman level limits.
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Marcus Aurelius
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Re: Trying to understand Demi-humans getting two primes from a designers perspective

Post by Marcus Aurelius »

Buttmonkey wrote:
Sat Mar 23, 2024 4:26 pm
It's a balancing mechanic to substitute for the evil of demihuman level limits.
C&C has level limits for demi human PCs?
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Persimmon
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Re: Trying to understand Demi-humans getting two primes from a designers perspective

Post by Persimmon »

Marcus Aurelius wrote:
Sat Apr 20, 2024 2:09 pm
Buttmonkey wrote:
Sat Mar 23, 2024 4:26 pm
It's a balancing mechanic to substitute for the evil of demihuman level limits.
C&C has level limits for demi human PCs?
Not really, but it does have preferred classes that are listed in the race descriptions. The way we play it, those are the only classes the demi-humans can play, but only demi-humans can multi-class, so it balances out. And I don't use the class & a half option. But C&C's class restrictions, if you will, are different from standard AD&D. Half-orcs, for example, can be monks. Halflings can be rangers, and pretty much every race has bards. Half-elves have no class restrictions and borrowing from Tolkien, they choose whether they favor their human or elven ancestry, which grants slightly different racial abilities. Another cool option are the racial traits in the CKG. I allow all demi-humans to have one of those as it adds a bit more customization.
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Re: Trying to understand Demi-humans getting two primes from a designers perspective

Post by Lurker »

I understand the need to balance the advantages of other races have with their abilities v humans. However, as someone that has HORID dice rolls, the 2 primes v 3 is swinging the pendulum way to far the other way.

For my house rule, humans roll an extra set of dice and drops the lowest one, and then can place the roll into any attribute they want. Other races have a very specific dice roll for every attribute and they can not change scores. That way humans have a wide verity of all attributes they can have but are the most flexible while the other races have a significantly less variable set of attributes.

To me that more balances out the racial bonuses without ham stringing anyone

With this, I don't necessarily have classes limited from races, for the most part, but different races have classes they better fit than other classes. Of course there are the normal 'no berserker high elf' type things but that is more setting than rule. However, if a player wanted to play an odd race class combo like that and had a great narrative that justified it, I'd probably allow it.

I do agree with ButtM on the evils of the old view of racial class limits !
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Marcus Aurelius
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Re: Trying to understand Demi-humans getting two primes from a designers perspective

Post by Marcus Aurelius »

Persimmon wrote:
Sun Apr 21, 2024 1:07 pm
Marcus Aurelius wrote:
Sat Apr 20, 2024 2:09 pm
Buttmonkey wrote:
Sat Mar 23, 2024 4:26 pm
It's a balancing mechanic to substitute for the evil of demihuman level limits.
C&C has level limits for demi human PCs?
Not really, but it does have preferred classes that are listed in the race descriptions. The way we play it, those are the only classes the demi-humans can play,
Thanks, I wasn't referring to house rules though.
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jdizzy001
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Re: Trying to understand Demi-humans getting two primes from a designers perspective

Post by jdizzy001 »

I have been playing c&c since about 2010 and this is the first time I’ve heard that the extra prime for humans is too powerful. As has been mentioned the idea behind the extra prime is that it was given to humans to compensate for the fact they don’t get any special powers or stat boosts like Demi humans.

Humans have always been difficult in d20 based games. I think 4e and 5e DnD did a good job by giving humans a floating bonus but regarding c&c, the extra prime has never been an issue at any of my tables because the other races get their own bonuses and perks. If you’re concerned with balance, well, this is c&c, balance isn’t a thing. We’re more concerned with fast gameplay and fantastic tales.

If you’re looking for an alternative to the human prime I would recommend OSE’s human variant. +1 to cha and con, roll 2 hd dice at level up and select the best, +1 on initiative rolls plus humans win ties because they’re impulsive, and +1 to leadership type roles.
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MythicGalea
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Re: Trying to understand Demi-humans getting two primes from a designers perspective

Post by MythicGalea »

Hey thanks everyone for all the discourse. Now I’m on the right track, I can now continue this project I was tentatively working on since November 2023. I’ve been considering a change to Demi-humans where they get three primes but have to adhere to a level limit. For example an Elf Fighter/Wizard/Rogue (a Fighter/Magic-User/Thief) would be able to reach 12th/19th/17th (out of 24 levels). It’s just an idea I had to add some more OSR flavour to Castles & Crusades.

MythicGalea
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Re: Trying to understand Demi-humans getting two primes from a designers perspective

Post by MythicGalea »

Image

Here's a table with some proposed class and level limits by race that I'm trying to implement at my regular game. It borrows from a variety of sources and is designed to work with Castles & Crusades' upper limit of 24. There's a few modern-isms, such as the Half-Orc's freedom to select Barbarian (which comes from 3E) and the Optional rule which allows demi-humans to progress beyond their racial limit if they have exceptional ability scores (which borrows from AD&D 2E). Also, I used the Old School Essentials Advanced Fantasy Player's Tome as the template for the overall class allowable/level limit for each race.

The purpose of this table is to allow a demi-human to multi-class in the AD&D traditional sense and give the demi-humans 3 primes instead of the usual 2.

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