Friday, June 22, 2018

Spending points on Allies

According to DF15, pg. 28:

"The player gets to choose his Ally’s template and any packages listed as options for it; e.g., he can declare that his apprentice is a budding necromancer, or request an archer who’s actually a slinger."

but it also says

"Ultimately, the GM designs Allies. Subject to the above guidance, the GM picks out advantages, disadvantages, skills, and spells; he might ask the player for input, but that’s just a courtesy."


"The GM shouldn’t do mean things like give a swashbuckler who wants to pass along his rapier mastery a protégé who knows Smallsword but not Rapier, but he’s under no obligation to create an optimized stats-monster merely because that’s what the player would do.

I'm quoting these because it's about time to put some points into Brother Ike, Hjalmarr's 50% point value Ally. Hjalmarr's player has sent me some requests and suggestions.

But ultimately it's up to me.

So I have a lot of decisions to make.

Brother Ike is originally a healer. He was requested as one, and I designed him as one. But at the same time, he's been getting more and more general cleric demands. Be effective against demons and undead. Be knowledgeable about religions and theology. Have a plethora of healing spells. Have a lot of power. Be capable of effective Last Ditch prayers. Have some cool power-ups that improve his offensive power and his defensive resistances.

In short, the demands went from "someone needs a healer!" to "we need a full-fledged cleric." No one particularly wants to run a full-fledged cleric, and the ones that do mostly want to leave healing and knowledge and so on off of the table to focus on other areas. Ike's in quite a bind.

I'm currently waffling between a few things. It's tempting to min-max him to PI 6 as soon as possible so he can use any cleric spells. But at the same time, he has some gaping holes as a delver. He's a poor climber. His DX is low-ish (11). His IQ is okay (13) but less than clerics need to be (14). He is slow. He is weak. He has low skills in some basic delver and cleric abilities. He needs more Energy Reserve. He's already got 15+ in all of his spells.

So it's an interesting situation. Min-max? Round him out? Start making bigger investments towards being a full-fledged cleric (many sessions and points away)?

We'll see. He has about 15 points to spend now. In a delve or two he could be open to raising almost anything.


  1. As a GM this is where I'd usually ask myself, "What does Ike want or need?"

    For instance, what would Ike see as his biggest area of 'failure'? Is it his focus on healing first, so he needs to diversify? Is it his lack of raw power? Have his lackluster Climbing skills held the group back? Etc.

    And then I go from there. Does Ike have any Disads that pull him in particular directions?

    1. The big question to me is what is a bigger hindrance: his low general stuff or his inability to handle any cleric spell. Personally, I'd go for the Power Investiture unless the party is having a real issue dragging Ike along.

      So, I think Peter's most popular blog post is the key. Has not having general skills been an issue *in play*? If yes, then they need boosting. If not, min-max to get the spells (I assume he has PI 4 since he has IQ 13 and 15+ in all spells).

  2. If they want an ally, they deal with it has been my solution

    1. Sure, but then you'll get something that we specifically wanted to avoid with them - munchkined one-dimensional min-maxed allies. You won't get much more than X points spent to get X * Y points worth of maximum value to the players. If they want to have that, they can make a new PC that does that, instead. If you want another person to bring along, well, the GM specifically has say. And I like it that way.


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