Monday, November 18, 2019

New 3DA ability and archetypes for tournament play

WizKids is running Three-Dragon Ante tournaments on Friday and Saturday of PAX Unplugged in Pennsylvania, December 6th and 7th. They had the fun idea of having people play in-character using the roleplaying rules for meshing 3DA with D&E 5e!

I thought a bit about how the current roleplaying rules would work in a casual-but-still-competitive tournament. My feeling is that the Ante Manipulation abilities (page 26 of the rulebook) aren't right for tournament play. They're OK in a home setting where players are accustomed to picking on each other week after week, but they're both vindictive and distinct from the way the game usually takes players' money, so no Ante Manipulation abilities in this tournament.

To help the fighter/barbarian types who are most likely to have the Threats & Promises ability we just ruled out of the tournament, here's a new Card Draw ability that's for characters with muscles. Like the other Card Draw abilities, Getting Angry Now lets you draw two cards when it triggers.

Getting Angry Now
Pre-requisite: Strength 16+
Trigger: You just lost a gambit with the second-strongest flight, or tied for second.

I'd say it makes perfect sense to let it be used if you're the second weakest when the Druid has awarded the gambit to the weakest. You're gonna be angry. 

If you bring your own character, the folks running the tournament will help you you select abilities that are right for the tournament. If you're showing up to play and you don't have a character ready, here's the short list of possible character archetypes I put together for WizKids to work from. These archetypes use the abilities as printed in the rulebook, with one exception: the Desperation ability is fine, but could get irritating if used too many times in a game, so for tournament play I'm suggesting that each player with the ability can only use Desperation once per game. Since it's therefore one of the weaker abilities, characters with Desperation will also have another ability that's on the weaker side, so they'll never be entirely out of options. 

3DA Archetypes

Drow Rogue
Card Draw: Versatile Trickster

Dragonborn Fighter
(Player chooses their color!)
Card Draw: Draconic Ancestry
Card Draw: Desperation [[but only usable once per game]]

Gnome Bard
Card Denial: Cutting Words
Card Draw: Fast Hands

Half-elf Paladin
Card Draw: Inspiring Leader

Half-Orc Barbarian
Card Draw: Getting Angry Now
Card Draw: Desperation [[but only usable once per game]]

Halfling Rogue
Card Draw: Gambling Background

Human Cleric
Card Draw: Blessing of the Trickster

High Elf Wizard
Card Denial: Mystic Discouragement
Card Draw: Practice Counts

Wood Elf Ranger
Card Draw: Desperation
Card Draw: Practice Counts

Other heroes…

The halfling rogue’s ability is fine for any player character who has a lot of experience gambling.

The half-orc barbarian’s abilities work for any strong fighter-type.

The wood elf ranger’s abilities work for any character who otherwise doesn’t belong at these tables!