Exceptional Strength and OA Classes

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Boneguard
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Exceptional Strength and OA Classes

Post by Boneguard » Mon Oct 06, 2014 10:33 pm

This is a question that came up as we have a few conflicting rules in the book. We came up with our ruling (which is the important thing here) but I would be interested in a second opinion (and if we could get a ruling from someone who actually work on the book and know it intimately that would be awesome).

Here goes:

"Under Strength (p. 7 of OA), the second paragraph indicate that Barbarian, Bushi, Samurai and Kensai can have exceptional strength, and the table doesn't indicate the maximum strength for the Sohei as being 18 (as for the other non-'combative' class) which could be infered that it can go beyond 18 up to the Racial maximum for human. Also under Racial ability Score limits (p.11) the footnote for strength indicate that Samurai, bushi, kensai, barbarian and sohei character can have exceptional strength.

However, We can all agree that:
1) 'Exceptional strength' has always been the domain of the fighter class and it's sub-classes: Ranger bushi(/ninja), kensai and barbarian.
2) Cavalier and its subclass: the paladin can increase their physical stats (it is explicitely stated in the UA on p.15 for Cavalier and p.16 for the paladin ) which, while it has a effect similar to 'exceptional strength',is not in fact 'exceptional strength' but a different ability altogether.
3) Samurai is a subclass of the cavalier class (table 13 p.14 & p.30) and nowhere is it indicated that the Samurai have the same ability to increase thier physical stats so we can assume they cannot do so.
4) Sohei is a subclass of the priest class.
5) In both cases (Samurai and sohei), as they are not a fighter subclass, it would be a clear indication that they are not eligible for 'exceptional strength' .

So our question (as we have conflicting information in the book) is: "Can Samurai and Sohei have exceptional strength despite not being part of the fighter class or was that a typo in the book?"
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Re: Exceptional Strength and OA Classes

Post by Boneguard » Sun Oct 12, 2014 6:11 pm

Hmm, As much as I would love to see what people think...and maybe have somekind of official point of View (although David Cook doesn't seem to be a member of The Piazza). I just realized this might be better off in the "Oriental Adventures" Furum rather then the "Kara-Tur" sub-forum.What should we do? Move the post, or make a mini post in the OA forum linking to it?

MODERATOR NOTE (by Big Mac): Thread moved from Kara-Tur forum to Oriental Adventures forum, per user request. Please feel free to use the "Report Post" feature (the exclamation mark in a triangle) to report your own thread, if you think you posted it in the wrong area. Just select "Other" and add a brief description. :)

Edit:
A second question tied to the same mechanic is about the Fighter's Constitution bonus (+3 at CON 17 and +4 at CON 18). The footnote under the Constitution table indicate that the Samurai and Sohei also get's iy but as they are not "fighter-class", is the footnote accurate or is it another typo?
Last edited by Boneguard on Sun Oct 12, 2014 6:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Exceptional Strength and OA Classes

Post by Ashtagon » Sun Oct 12, 2014 6:24 pm

Given the talk of exceptional Strength, I'm guessing this is intended to be about AD&D rules? The OA hardcover was written for AD&D 1e, but there may be some 2e rules I'm not aware of that re-created some of that content.
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Re: Exceptional Strength and OA Classes

Post by Boneguard » Sun Oct 12, 2014 6:30 pm

Part of the problem is that it is about about AD&D 1st ed rules in regards of exceptional strength and constitution bonus and how it interact with Classes/Subclasses, but specificially in the OA ruleset where there were a few differences due to the different setting...and some grey zone.
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Re: Exceptional Strength and OA Classes

Post by Big Mac » Sun Oct 26, 2014 12:04 pm

Boneguard wrote:So our question (as we have conflicting information in the book) is: "Can Samurai and Sohei have exceptional strength despite not being part of the fighter class or was that a typo in the book?"
Lets have a look at the exact text:
Oriental Adventures: Creating the Player Character: Strength section wrote:Furthermore, samurai, ensai, barbarians and bushi with a Strength score of 18 are entitled to roll percentile dice to generate a number between 1 and 100 to determine exceptional Strength; exceptional Strength improves the character's chance to hit an enemy, increass the damage he causes with each hit, and increses the weight the character is able to carry without a penalty without encumbrance. It also increases the character's ability to fore open doors and similar portals.
This seems pretty clear to me. They are saying that they do get an exceptional Strength roll (if they have 18 strength).
Boneguard wrote:However, We can all agree that:
1) 'Exceptional strength' has always been the domain of the fighter class and it's sub-classes: Ranger bushi(/ninja), kensai and barbarian.
2) Cavalier and its subclass: the paladin can increase their physical stats (it is explicitely stated in the UA on p.15 for Cavalier and p.16 for the paladin ) which, while it has a effect similar to 'exceptional strength',is not in fact 'exceptional strength' but a different ability altogether.
3) Samurai is a subclass of the cavalier class (table 13 p.14 & p.30) and nowhere is it indicated that the Samurai have the same ability to increase thier physical stats so we can assume they cannot do so.
4) Sohei is a subclass of the priest class.
5) In both cases (Samurai and sohei), as they are not a fighter subclass, it would be a clear indication that they are not eligible for 'exceptional strength' .
Hang on. Why can we "all agree this"? :?

I do not see anything on table 13 that suggests that Samuari or Sohei can not get to strength 18.

I am assuming the thing you are referring to on page 30 is the "Classes and Subclasses" list. Again, I do not see anything suggesting that Samuari or Sohei can not get to strength 18.

Given that I see two sections that do not say "this is impossible", and one section that specifically says that it "is possible", I would personally interpret this to mean that the Samuari and Sohe are a "fighting Cavalier" and a "fighting Priest" in 1e terms. In other words I would say that the Samuari works like a Cavalier who can gain exceptional Strength and a Sohei works like a Priest who can gain exceptional Strength.

Mind you, I do not have Unearthed Arcana. Perhaps you could quote the sections that you believe override Oriental Adventures.
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Re: Exceptional Strength and OA Classes

Post by Boneguard » Sun Oct 26, 2014 12:50 pm

It does state that Samurai (at least) would have exceptional strength (and the demiguman table also add sohei) and by itself it could be seen as an indicator that they have it.

But then, there are the first 2 points I've mentioned.

point 1 referes to the PHB p 9
Furthermore, fighters with an 18 strength are entitled to roll percentile dice in order to generate a random number between 01 and 00 (100) to determine exceptional strength; exceptional strength increases hit probability and damage done when attacking, and it also increases the weight the character is able to carry without penalty for encumbrance, as well as increasing the character's ability to force open doors and similar portals. The tables below give complete information regarding the effects of strength. Note that only fighters are permitted to roll on the exceptional strength section of STRENGTH TABLE II: ABILITY ADJUSTMENTS
PHB page 19 and the class description indicate the fighter and paladin are fighter subclass.

Point 2 is in UA on p. 15
A cavalier undergoes continual training and practice in arms and warfare, such that part of any day not spent adventuring must be spent in mounted arms drill or combat practice on foot. As a result of this constant training, the cavalier can increase his or her strength, dexterity, and constitution scores. When a cavalier is at 1st level, percentile dice are rolled for each of these abilities, just as they are for fighters with 18 strength. A Lancer with 15 dexterity might have 15/87 dexterity upon attaining Armiger status. The percentage has no normal effect on play, and the ability score is considered to be the main number (15 in this case). An exception is percentile strength above 18, which is treated as for fighters on the strength bonuses table.

As a cavalier attains each higher level, 2d10 are rolled and the result added to the percentile score for strength, dexterity, and constitution. When a percentile score goes over 100, the main score is raised by 1 and the 100 is discarded. (In the example, if the cavalier with 15/87 dexterity rolls a 19 for this ability upon gaining 2nd level, the character’s dexterity score is now 16/06, and is treated as a 16.) Ability scores can be raised as high as 18/00 in this manner, even if doing so
violates limitations based on race or sex. If a cavalier loses a level, the percentile points gained for that level are lost.
page 16 indicates the paladin has the same ability;
The powers, abilities, and level advancement of the paladin as described in the Players Handbook remain unchanged. In addition, the paladin gains the abilities and powers of the cavalier class, including weapons of choice, parrying ability, horsemanship, saving throw bonuses, and immunity to fear. The paladin may also increase his or her charisma score in the same way that he or she (as a cavalier) can increase strength, dexterity, and constitution.
Page 12 and 13, indicated the class and subclasses. Paladin is now a Cavalier subclass and Barbarian is a new fighter subclass.

The wording for Cavalier and paladin is pretty straight forward, they can increase stats, which in the case of strength it acts as exceptional strength, but it is not in fact the Exceptional strength ability. In the case of the Samurai (a cavalier subclass), unlike the paladin, it is not indicated that he gains the stat increase, so he cannot bring his stats above 18. (point 2 also)

Table 13 and page 30, reaffirm that Samurai and Sohei are NOT fighter or fighter subclass, which bring me to point 5 that they should not have exceptional class as they are not fighter.

Now maybe samurai was initially planned as a fighter subclass (same goes for sohei) thus the indicatin on page 7 or 8. Maybe it was a typo from someone who went too fast and thought "Well they are like fighter with extra ability". Maybe I'm overthinikng it, but If we are basing ourselves on the core mechanic of the game, we get the conclusion of point 5.
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Re: Exceptional Strength and OA Classes

Post by Michael Tumey » Sun Oct 26, 2014 8:26 pm

Well, I know when deciphering Pathfinder rules, there are general rules and there are specific rules. Specific always take precedence over general rules. So in this case there exists a general rules that exceptional strength only applies to fighter class and subclasses. However, in OA where it states that both a samurai (subclass of cavalier) and sohei (subclass of monk) are eligible for exceptional strength - these are specific rules. Given that these are specific rules, they take precedence over the PH general rules, it should be easily surmised that samurai and sohei indeed gain exceptional strength, despite what it states in the PH. Of course your GM could rule it differently, but I would consider such a ruling to be a houserule, since the OA book specifically says its allowed for those non-fighter classes. (I don't consider it a mistake, and in fact, it makes complete sense to me.)

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Re: Exceptional Strength and OA Classes

Post by Boneguard » Sun Oct 26, 2014 8:44 pm

That's one valid approch yes. And I agree at the end the GM makes a call and you agree with it or walk away from the game.

I wish I could pick David "Zeb" Cook noodle on that one though.
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