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View Poll Results: What is up with Beast Masters?
They are too weak for the investment 9 75.00%
They are too confusing to play 0 0%
I've just never considered them 3 25.00%
I just don't like them 0 0%
Voters: 12. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 06-20-2017, 09:21 PM   #1
merdle
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Default Beast Master System Discussion

Hey nerds. We need to talk about Beast Masters!

Really what I want to know is, why not Beast Masters?

In my view, we have some 'major' systems on the site, things that drastically change your character. Then we have some 'minor' systems, that don't drastically change things, but are different from the norm.

Puppets and Beast Masters are what I would call Minor. You take an archetype, and you get access to certain lists. Medical ninja are the same way. But while Medical ninja buy the power to heal and help, Puppets and Beast Masters buy additional firepower by using a certain archetype.

People don't often use puppets because they consider it complicated, and it is a rather focused character concept. But Beast Masters are underused, and often are seen as underpowered. At least, that is my perception.

So I come here asking, what do people think of Beast Masters? Do they need help? Is it just too narrow of a character concept? Are they too weak? Are they too complicated?

Discuss below, but also vote in the poll (I forget we have those).
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Old 06-20-2017, 09:24 PM   #2
Juushichi
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Aside from lack of real interest, it felt like playing a beastmaster wasn't worth it because they felt really limiting to genin and chuunin for me.
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Old 06-20-2017, 09:25 PM   #3
Virtual Dream
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I've thrown around ideas for beastmasters for years now, but my major problem is the slow rate in which the pet grows.
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Old 06-20-2017, 09:25 PM   #4
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The jutsu just need some work (I think? I swear that was being cooked up somewhere, if it already got edited recently, whoops!)

I wanted a falconer character, but the amount of jutsu you need to spend in the current BM list is silly if you want your beast to be any good, imo.

Beasts could use a little bit more love by way of number of known jutsu and stat points at creation, maybe?

I don't feel like it's complicated. Definitely less so than puppeteer characters.

edit: also, what VD said -- I feel like it'd make more sense and be more attractive if the pet grew proportionally to the user's own growth (even if it's like the pet gets half the points that the user did or something idfk)
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Old 06-20-2017, 09:52 PM   #5
Simonsez
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I feel like the question is what can a beastmaster do that anyone else can’t, and the answer is literally nothing. The beast starts off with stats less than anything, I mean a sennin beastmaster starts off with a pet that has stats less than an at creation chuunin. Most people would rather just use a bunshin that will pretty much always do more damage and work than a animal ever will. Don’t forget that it’s capped at stage 5 (Which it’ll never hit because you only get one point per thread on him unless you want to gimp your character even further which is really stupid because...bunshin, puppets and other things don’t get that big of a handicap) so he’ll always be useless in combat.

I think I also said in the chat but that beastmaster list sucks, it has to be too vague to fit in with every animal and because of that it suffers, it has...bunshin and transformation skills which aren’t really needed (I think it was 3+ of each type).

The lack of uniqueness in animals is also a problem since it feels like it’s stuck in previous engi reincarnations, most beastmasters don’t get the creativity to create a super unique fun bear or dog...since that’s what most of them pick anyway.

Also can we please get a damn clan with dragons? Please?

edit in regards to stats:
Chuunin starting stats is 30/27/24
Sennin beast is 26/21/17
so...yeah

Tl;dr:
-Bunshin’s do more work
-They tax the characters thread points
-The list isn’t good
-Can’t get creative or weird with pets
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Old 06-20-2017, 09:54 PM   #6
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Ooh, I have a vested interest in this!

All right, bottom line: the beastmaster line in engi doesn't "feel" cool as it is. This is supposed to be a shinobi animal, not just your average squirrel through bear.

As is, the only really exciting way, in my opinion, to beastmaster is Inuzuka. The multipet path is a neat twist, but is also problematic because it inherently makes it not just a unique twist on the beastmaster system, but an inherently superior implementation of the beastmaster system than at current. At chuunin, 2 dogs; jounin, 3 dogs. Meanwhile, a jounin beastmaster gets 1 beast the same strength as any one of the three Inuzuka dogs. And, yes, they are our canon beastmaster example, but they shouldn't be the best period. They should be the best at their approach.

I am working on a beastmaster clan (giant eagles of Stone, what what) and ran into this problem early: I want to make my beastmaster option as viable as the Inuzuka. That is the best version of beastmaster at current, so why wouldn't I want to do that? In conversations with merdle and Jami, we discussed roughing out the mechanics to not be multiple eagles--because that isn't what I wanted--but one stronger eagle. This was reflected as the eagles having double the creation points/jutsu, at least at chuunin and jounin ranks, to compensate for 1 beast vs 2 or 3 beasts. I really liked this compromise, but it still does not fix the problem with the non-clan beastmasters!

Points raised so far are all very valid: they seem non-viable statistically, they grow too slow, BM jutsu list--but, most importantly, there should not be a clan of this essential archetype that is an undeniable better version by such a gulf as the Inuzuka currently are (or my clan would be with the mechanics as is). As the problem isn't beasts being TOO common and TOO strong, the solution as I see it would be to bring non-clan beastmaster up to the Inuzuka level, more or less. Allow an option for multipet or a single stronger pet, perhaps?

I don't see the beastmaster suffering for any reasoning of it being overcomplicated. Rather, it seems like it was a poor concession of, "Sure, have a beast, I guess, but we will make them as inconsequential as possible." Of course, then comes the matter of making a beastmaster not inherently superior to a non-beastmaster. That is a whole other can of worms, but given that we no longer penalize puppeteers item points, I am not sure what sort of penalty, if any, would be appropriate to implement on the beastmaster in order to 'balance' it. As is, Chuunin puppets are stronger than a jounin beasts (maybe even sennin according to Simon). This is a chief reason why the current beastmaster situation is unattractive.
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Old 06-21-2017, 08:27 PM   #7
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Beastmasters are definitely not on the weaker end of archetype bonuses. In fact, they do far more than most (if not all) others. With 0 additional investment you gain a constant companion with its own abilities, that can also use jutsu and its animal senses, if it has any useful ones. It's kind of like having a constant summon (a weak one, yes) that can grow with your character.

Beast masters aren't coming up short compared to other types of characters in terms of added ability or usefulness. They don't need an extra oomph, but instead all they need is a little flair.

On the note of puppets:-

Puppeteer get only 4 item points and they require a ton of jutsu points in order to be very effective. It's unfair to compare them to beastmasters given the difference in the required investment. The two archetypes are designed differently.

Puppeteers are meant to be super specialized while beast masters can be whatever they want to be in addition to having a pet. Because of that design and the difference in the needed investment, puppets are supposed to be much stronger than beasts.

Stage 4 puppetry is needed to control a second puppet. That's 4 jutsu points spent without even getting any cool abilities on a puppet.
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Old 06-21-2017, 10:34 PM   #8
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Yes, but beast masters are not supposed to be normal ninja with an added weak beast, Kap. They're meant to be shinobi who focus on utilizing a beast in battle. In order to be effective, you need investments, not to mention stats are horrible. If anything, nerf a pc 5 points each stat block and give them to the pet.
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Old 06-21-2017, 10:41 PM   #9
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Beast masters need a way more similar to puppeteers in regards to being able to invest into the pet. At 0 investment, beasts are better, but their primary issue is that deep investment with beastmaster is significantly worse than deep puppets. And massively worse than deep summons, which is the ACTUAL thing we should be comparing pets to, mechanically.
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Old 06-22-2017, 02:28 AM   #10
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So then that begs a question.

Would people want to see a sort of Puppeteering-like list for Beast Masters? Maybe built Nin-as-Tai style and giving them more benefits to their beast as they go up?

This would up the investment for BMs, but could allow clans to keep some of their unique benefits to their beasts. We could also respect that BMs are supposed to be less intense than puppeteers, and keep the BM list as sort of a halfway power level. Like, at the end of the day the list isn't essential, you would still have a pet even if you didn't take the list at all, but going deep in the list would make them an integral part of the beast master's arsenal.
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