These are some melee charms I've been making to flesh out the Solar Melee trees. The could easily be adapted to the Abyssal Exalted almost verbatim. What do you think of the costs and prices?
Dazzling Strike Technique</b>
<b>Cost: 3 motes Duration: Instant Type: Supplemental Min. Ability: Melee 2 Min Essence: 1 Prereqs: Excellent Strike
The swordswoman charges her sword with dazzline essence, deftly sliding in between even the most tenacious of defenses. The Solar may make an attack that cannot be blocked without the use of some magic (sorcery, charms, or artifact special abilities). Any active magic at all in the defense, even one die from a dice adder, will allow this strike to be blocked.
Brilliant Cut Prana</b>
<b>Cost: 3 motes, 1 willpower Duration: Instant Type: Simple Min. Ability: Melee 4 Min Essence: 2 Prereqs: Dazzling Strike Technique, Iron Storm Technique, Angry Tiger Strike
The Solar can make an attack so inspired, so graceful, and so brutal that no defense short of a perfect one can truly stop it. Treat this charm like Accuracy Without Distance, but for melee attacks. In essence, assume that, even if the defender stops every success from the attack roll, at least one success always remains.
Whirlwind of Celestial Fury</b>
<b>Cost: 10 motes, 1 willpower Duration: Varies Type: Simple Min. Ability: Melee 5 Min Essence: 6 Prereqs: Brilliant Cut Prana & Maybe something else
Much like Protection of Celestial Bliss, this charm lets you store up perfect melee attacks. Each invocation of this charm allows you to make up to your essence in perfect attacks. The essence remains commuted for these attacks until ALL of them are used from that invocation.
Iron Storm Technique</b>
<b>Cost: 5 motes Duration: Instant Type: Simple Min. Ability: Melee 3 Min Essence: 2 Prereqs: One Weapon Two Blows
By rapid anticipation and dogged persistance, a Solar warrior can harray an opponent ceaselessly until they finally make a mistake. This charm allows the character to make a melee attack that is undodgable.
Angry Tiger Strike</b>
<b>Cost: 5 motes Duration: Instant Type: Simple Min. Ability: Melee 3 Min Essence: 2 Prereqs: Hungry Tiger Technique
By infusing her weapon with essence, a Solar can make attacks that literally repulse the defenses of their foes as they strike with such force that they are effectively uselss. This charm allows a Solar to make an unblockable melee attack.
What do you all think of my charms? I have some archery, lore, and occult stuff too that I've been pondering. \\ -- DaveFayram
I am kind of leery of perfect Melee attacks. If you've read my iaijutsu Charms, you'll note that the perfects are kind of hard to get to, involve unusual restrictions (at least, the first one does), and are Simple; even then, people thought they were too powerful. I think Melee is just too much of a workhorse ability to get perfects as easily as you have them occurring here.
You might want to think about restructuring so that your omniperfects require Angry Tiger and Iron Storm.
You're right, it should be simple. I changed it. However, I think I'm leaving the semi-perfect the way it is. It's a Mookbuster, plain and simple. I suppose I could link in those other charms, but I dunno how much sense it makes. Is that really the best idea? Personally, I think that perfect melee attacks aren't a big deal, since you can still parry them down to base damage. I find unblockable and undodgable attacks to be far scarier. \\ -- DaveFayram
Hm. I suppose you're right about perfect v. UB/UD, but still. Even if you're only guaranteed a single success on a melee attack, that can represent a ludicrous amount of damage. No arrow does Strength+11 base damage.
Wanna bet, Ikselam? :) With the right artifacts, arrows can do horrific damage.Frog crotch arrows do a MASSIVE amount of damage on unarmored targets, and often times heavily armored targets can shove off a 13L wound but a target arrow can still roll more than one die. Archery is one of the most underestimated trees in Exalted because arrow damage seems low, but specialty arrows aren't. Archery actually does fall short against things with naturally high soaks, thoah. \\ -- DaveFayram
But with Melee, you don't have to screw around with that stuff. You just hit the bastard and watch him fall down. Melee is also significantly more versatile that Archery -- it is already so close to being the universal combat solution (It defends! better than Dodge! It attacks! for great damage! with huge dice pools! even at range!) that it does not need more oomph. There should be something that Melee isn't as good at.
Hmm. True, Melee is a very versatile solution, but it doesn't defend better than dodge. In Melee, you need to be aware of everything that you defend against, and you need to be pretty close to everything you hit, even with the rather pathetic range charms. Assuming we make a dodge charm that is as good as HGD (which is about as canon as can be without actually being in a book), then Dodge is just way better. Melee and Archery are just incredibly good, but Brawl and Thrown seem to kinda fall. MA is MA, it's just weird. \\ Do you think it'd be fair then to make it so that my perfect attack charm requires the undodge and unblock? Also, should I disallow perfect unblock/dodgeable attacks in combos at this level as well? Seems to me like an undodgable or unblockable perfect attack is scary (albeit expensive, 8e2w). \\ -- DaveFayram
Well, Dodge does do some things that Melee defense won't, but the Melee reflexive/persistent defenses will generally yield larger dice pools (and there's my pet peeve, HGD). I agree that Solar Brawl kind of got the shaft (cheesy "I hit him into the ground with HTH" moves notwithstanding), and too much of Thrown strategy revolves around my other pet peeve, Cascade of Cutting Terror.
I think if you have the perfect follow the UB/UD, they should all be Simple in order to eliminate the super-duper Combo bogeyman.
The following is just random, mental meanderings, take none of it overly seriously.
What you're putting together is some shaky stuff. It's exciting, but it seems to me to require the kind of deep thoughts that Game Designers are payed to think (not that they always do it so well.)
I'm not saying we shouldn't think those thoughts. I'm just encouraging discussion.
What would happen if you made an attack that could not be defended by conventional means, could be comboed in such a way that it ignored soak and defeated your opponent in some non-health level way, and even if it failed, it layed the smackdown on your opponent? You'd get Hungry Earth Strike... but that's niether here nor there (Am I being snide? Maybe... just another Immaculate Charm I don't think was very well thought out). :)
It is important to think "What would happen if I comboed this with other charms..." like Thunderbold attack prana? Or Hungry Tiger Strike? In the former, it could be devastating against an unarmored foe with a high damage weapon. Your "low damage attack" could turn into 30 damage in short order!
But on the later, It really wouldn't matter much. Much of the Solar power comes from getting alot of successes, and a perfect attack doesn't give that. Considering your greater cost and limitations (simple rather than supplemental) it actually seems rather fair to me... but I'd want to spruce it up with neat text, and some unusual, special mechanics to divorce it further from AWD.
I'm sorry, really, I'm just musing out loud. Take none of this as serious criticism, just an open page on the thoughts of Mailanka on your charms.
I like it, thanks Mailanka. I think Ikselam IS right in that the unblock and undodge charms need to be simple, and I made them so. To date, I know of no charms that make use of a weapon to deliver an especially odd non-damage attack. I have no problem with stuff like hungry tiger making the base damage really high, the same sorts of things happen in archery with no problem. I've some some truly insane archery combos using it. Wanna kill a deathknight armor king? Try comboing solar spike, accuracy without distance, and thunderbolt attack. If you catch them with their pants down, they're taking 2x your essence AT LEAST. It's costly, but so are melee damage boosters. In general, archery charms are way more efficient than melee charms. Personally, I think every fighting tree but brawl can have a perfect hit effect. Brawl should just get some other perfect effects like initiative and undodges and unblocks.
Of these charms, I am liking the unblock and undodge the best. They're really neat because they give a level of tricksy-ness to a melee fighter. I may hang them further down the tree though. Would it make sense to put them at the terminus of the subtrees I have them at now?
And what about the cost?
Try comboing solar spike, accuracy without distance, and thunderbolt attack.\\ I am positive that Thunderbolt Attack Prana and Leaping Tiger Attack were meant to apply only to hand-to-hand attacks, even though the Charm text doesn't actually say it.
Err, I admit the charm text is kinda unclear, but it's an athletics charm for boosting damage and moving. It wouldn't be very fair to limit it like that. I can easily envision thunderbolt being used with a bow, leaping up in the air, flipping as you draw thousands of motes of light into a roaring bolt upon the bowstring, unleashing its fury straight down like the wrath of heaven. This is prime combo material. :) It's a bit more of a strech with leaping tiger, but it's still very doable. We've had solar errata and it didn't correct it so... \\ -- DaveFayram
From the description, the effects of LTA and TBAP are clearly produced by the fact that you've got more momentum behind your blade, or fist or whatever -- it doesn't enhance the weapon at all (thus it being under Athletics). This is not so much of an issue with ranged weapons. You won't hurl a chakram appreciably faster if you have a running start. Your arrows won't hit harder if you jump while firing them. But whatever works for you, I suppose.
Well, strictly speaking, throwing a chakram from a speeding point WILL make it hit harder. Your velocity plus the velocity you're adding is the chakram's speed. Likewise with arrows, although less od a differenet scale, relatively. That's just physics. But I'll grant that it seems to kinda favor melee. However, look at that decision from a game balance standpoint. You really shaft archery and really really REALLY shaft thrown, which tends to rely on those charms for damage boost.
Is that really the best decision? I mean, DSD can't parry ranged attacks, even though that doesn't make much sense, for "game balance."
Yeah, but throwing a chakram harder should also make it fly further, which it doesn't. Physics (or the lack thereof) aside, I don't think Archery is particularly shafted if you disallow TBAP/LTA; it already has plenty of damage-adders, plus a cheap perfect, plus Rain of Feathered Death. Thrown doesn't, really; as I noted previously, it relies much too much on CoCT -- which is really good, even if you don't use the insane interpretation which states that you don't need even a single weapon to activate it. But, yes, the other Thrown Charms kind of blow, unless you happen to be attacking from ambush, in which case they blow slightly less. I don't think I'd say that the Athletics damage-adders are absolutely key to effective Thrown strategy, though -- as it's currently set up, Thrown seems to rely on rolling a crapload of attack dice to generate its damage, rather than directly enhancing the damage.
I suppose you're right. I'll keep them simple, and I'll change the requirements.
So, here's the question. Is th price right? Should I have the UB and UD lower on the tree? -- DaveFayram
I think Whirlwind of Celestial Fury should require Iron Whirlwind (unless I'm parsing the tree wrong and it already does).
If I was making these, I think I would insert some intermediate Charms before the UB/UD. Something like that Lunar Charm that makes attacks twice as hard to parry (Tiger Claw Swat?) before the UB, for example. They would be significantly less effective than the UB/UD, but probably Supplemental (so they wouldn't be totally outmoded once you got the UB/UD).
Oh, and a question about Brilliant Cut. How does it interact with defensive Charms that break down in the face of magical attacks (i.e., many DB defenses)? I assume the advantage goes to the defender, but it might be good to explicitly deal with that in the Charm text.
I didn't think it'd be a point of contention, it's a charmed attack, so it'd just ignore them. I think I might agree with you that you need something before the UB/UD. However, I don't think what you're describing is thematically consistant with Solar abilitites. They either do it better, or they just succeed, or they take away dice. They don't in general jack difficulties up. Is there even an example of this, outside of the very weird Power Draining Whisper stuff?
Hm... let me think about what should be an intermediary step.
Then just have it be like Hungry Tiger, except instead of counting successes twice for damage, you count them twice to hit. Or something like that.
I really like the idea behind Dazzling Strike Technique; however, I think it should have slightly higher prerequisites. Its potential efficacy against targets without persistent defenses, including opponents like Heroic Mortals and Fair Folk which should present a small but significant challenge against non-twinked starting Solars, suggests to me that it should be a wee bit higher on the Charm tree. (Plus, a combo with Iron Storm Technique is just plain ugly!) - Quendalon