Saturday, September 21, 2019

Limited Great Haste

So Great Haste's impact on play has prompted another GM to limit it a bit:

Gimping Great Haste.

My players and I - mostly the players who routinely take, and cast, Great Haste - have discussed ways to limit the spell.

Lessened Great Haste for example, is a list of some ways we've considered changing it.

The method used on dripton's blog is a simple one. Still, I feel like it weakens fighter-types - which is fine - while not limiting casters - who really, in my experience, benefit from Great Haste. I'm not saying his choice is wrong, just that it's something I think my players (especially the ones who run Dryst/Angus McSwashy and Gerry/formerly Vryce) would have concerns about. Great Hasting yourself as a caster is a turn one move in any fight you expect to last longer than 10 seconds, against foes who need to be defeated by magic, or against a foe too lethal to make it last 10 seconds.

I keep looking back at my post and trying to figure out a good solution. I like the idea of double abilities, but it's tough to adjudicate in some cases. The fixed bonuses is nice, but perhaps too limited (and needs to address casters, honestly.) I need more feedback from my players before I can really do more - they love Great Haste but more than a few of them find it so must-have that it could use adjustment to make it feel like a more balanced choice.


  1. Depends on how you want to define terms... but... technically..

    /puts on rules lawyerly nerd hat

    Spells casting times are in seconds not "number of maneuvers". Great Hast (in DFRPG) gives an additional /maneuver/ each turn, not an additional /second/.

    Yes, yes, I know, mind blowing implications for spellcasters.

    1. Mind blowing, if true . . . but Great Haste gives one level of Altered Time Rate (per GURPS Magic, p. 146). Altered Time Rate (p. B38) says you experience two subjective seconds for every one second that passes. It doesn't say a second Maneuver - time is literally passing twice as fast for you.

      So the only argument is that objective seconds for everyone, not subjective ones for you, determine casting length. But even that won't fly by lawyerly reading - Altered Time Rate specifically mentions casting spells faster as a use of the advantage.

    2. I thought you had switched to DFRPG Spells... if so, go reread Great Haste on Spells pg 57.

      Mind will be blown in 5... 4... 3...

    3. That looks literal, but I'm not sure you are right. I think there are flow on and cascade effects from doing concentrate maneuvers that might not work with that. I think I would confirm with the author which shouldn't be too hard to do.

    4. Either way, we've been looking a cross-campaign solution - we've been noodling on about how Great Haste is so useful it's practically required to be a useful mage since the 90s. And the 4th edition revision to ATR made it even more so. So simply going with DFRPG Spells on this would at best be a temporary solution, and it's still not quite the change that would satisfy us.

    5. My issue with it has always been much the same as the disastrous celerity of VTM

      It allows one PC to do so much more than all the others. So the other players sit there and watch one PC take two turns then probably attack four times each turn. Then, especially if their PC is a thief or bard (lol) do nothing. Wow glad to be here.

      I dont care that it buffs PCs because my fights are tough. I have no problem with a group of Great Haste buffed Knights strolling out to dightbthe PCs (on the tougher deeper levels).

      Ive usually just said it can only be cast once on each PC per session. That way "whoops we used Great Haste on everyone but the bard and thief, now its your turn" or "we are going to save great haste for the Knight, but we can cast it on the thief now for low risk" is a thing.

    6. "That looks literal, but I'm not sure you are right."

      It is literal. It's explicitly a literal reading, which people used to 3e and 4e GURPS wouldn't even notice.

      But someone unfamiliar, reading the rules with an eye towards "explicit rules are explicit" would not be allowing Great Hasted Wizards to speed cast. Cast and still perform AOD? Sure.

      I had a Player who was new to GURPS question it once, and when I reread Great Haste in DFRPg that ruling kinda clicked. I don't use it, but it is the /literal/ RAW.

    7. It will literally take you less than two minutes to ask Sean Punch the intention.

    8. Ignoring the intent of the author to argue the letter of the wording of a rule to extend its effect to a not explicitly discussed area?

      Oh great, my blog is turning into the forums!


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