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What are the biggest things DnD 5e needs to be passable?
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Lago PARANOIA
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 03, 2017 1:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I've been playing 5E D&D for a year and have independently gotten two characters up to level 8 and 14 using official Adventurer's League material, not to include countless amounts of one-shots or 'non-canon' adventures where I played my AL-legal player in a custom game but didn't have the custom game affect my character's progression.

My verdict is that while 5E D&D is certainly a less excruciating experience on the whole than 2E and 4E D&D, there's pretty much nothing it does better than Pathfinder or 3.xE D&D.

In particular, my big five complaints are:

  • The CR is completely out of whack. It was touched on earlier in this thread, but CR is a complete joke in this edition, both ways. I'm playing Tomb of Annihilation and our level 2 party of six people got its shit wrecked by a bunch of Velociraptors in a random encounter, with enough of them to bring up the CR to 2. Similarly, we had an average level party of 11 completely dominate a CR 15 encounter (that had Legendary Actions and everything) because we had two wizards (one of which is an abjuration wizard) with Counterspell, a bard with Counterspell, and Sunbeam. We also got our shit handed to us by a CR 7 encounter in the same dungeon that consisted of wizards with access to Counterspell and a single-action Conjure Elemental.
  • Aside from some CR hiccups that occur when you go with quantity versus quality, the game is way too easy. The math is balanced around the characters not getting magical items. Which is fine and all, but the official books and adventures more than spoil you. The Eldritch Knight fighter in one of my groups does so much damage, especially when they go all Oathbow on your ass, that he can solo many encounters by himself. The Lore Bard/Sorcerer has a Staff of Power. My Bladesinger has a Tome of the Stilled Tongue, an Iron Flask, Bracers of Armor, and a Tome of Clear Thought. All from official adventurers.
  • LWQW is still in full force. Granted, it's not as bad as it could be because 5E D&D monsters are designed to be relatively weak to weapon damage, but it's already reared its ugly head. I have to intentionally sandbag as not to overshadow the party, starting as soon as level 7.
  • The skill system completely sucks ass. We won't get into why, but it's seriously worse than you think. Bounded Accuracy makes bog-standard tasks like analyzing runes or convincing people of shit a total joke. I mean, even at higher level the DC of such things in hardcover is typically around the 13-18 range, but it's not particularly difficult to get it such it's damn near an autopass in many cases. My Bladesinger has a +9 with advantage to certain Intelligence checks thanks to a low-level adventure reward, and I could get it higher if I wanted to. And if the Light Cleric or Lore Bard is afoot, it can get even higher.
  • The game is balanced around having 6-8 encounters between long rests, with two short rests between the long rests, but in actual play long rests are a lot more frequent even in situations where there's a time limit, such as Dead in Thay. Try 2-3, oftentimes only one. This, of course, is a big contribution to LWQW but it also ends up screwing over classes that are balanced around stretching out short rest resources such as the Warlock and the Rogue.
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    Josh Kablack wrote:
    Your freedom to make rulings up on the fly is in direct conflict with my freedom to interact with an internally consistent narrative. Your freedom to run/play a game without needing to understand a complex rule system is in direct conflict with my freedom to play a character whose abilities and flaws function as I intended within that ruleset. Your freedom to add and change rules in the middle of the game is in direct conflict with my ability to understand that rules system before I decided whether or not to join your game.

    In short, your entire post is dismissive of not merely my intelligence, but my agency. And I don't mean agency as a player within one of your games, I mean my agency as a person. You do not want me to be informed when I make the fundamental decisions of deciding whether to join your game or buying your rules system.


    Last edited by Lago PARANOIA on Tue Oct 03, 2017 1:08 am; edited 1 time in total
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    tussock
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    PostPosted: Tue Oct 03, 2017 1:22 am    Post subject: Re: What are the biggest things DnD 5e needs to be passable? Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Cervantes wrote:
    I guess the more specific question is: can you houserule and patch 5e into a passable game (for certain kinds of stories, high-fantasy not included)? Is the chassis robust enough or is it rotten to the core?


    People use 5e.

    There's groups using it as a magic tea party game where the players ask if there's anything they can do that might work and then the DM rolls a die and uses it for inspiration toward how the story moves forward from there. Plus there's a combat engine but just have the monsters die when it's dramatically appropriate and don't kill the PCs all the time just because the dice say they died.

    There's groups where the DM is using 3e, or Mentzer, or LotFP, or whatever else, something with rules to run the interactions of the players with the world, and the players use 5e characters within that. You still have to ignore a lot of the outcomes of the combat engine, but yeah.

    Quote:
    And a bonus question: when it comes to using math in game design is it largely just "figure out the outcomes that you want to be possible and the respective chances of their occurring and then tweak the numbers to make that the case"?


    It's iterative probability, mostly. Your majority rate of success has to not get cock-blocked by specific failures, so your net probability of failure in the long term drops toward zero. While still feeling like it's high enough risk that people understand they will fail some things (about 1-in-6 to 1-in-3 failures). While not rolling too many dice for tasks that aren't dynamic and responsive enough to warrant a lot of face-time.

    Things that fail too rarely feel unfair when they fail, things that fail too often feel like you lack agency in the resolution. Individual failures have to be fairly consistent, but the product of them needs to approach zero over time.

    And of course, things need to resolve. Fights need to end, and if that's all to the death then everything that's not the PCs must die extremely reliably. Negotiations need final outcomes. Hidden or locked doors need to have a rule for PCs burning the fucking house down if the other rules didn't work, which is not "lol, no, you'll spoil the adventure".

    Which is a crazy-large solution space you will not find answers for, you have to put a lot more limitations on your variables just for the feels of it first. Question things like "can we get away with smaller numbers, again?" and "is this scale appropriate for the RNG?" and "is three attacks OK?" and "WTF, spells?" and "is this as much fun if it takes less time, or less fun?" and "why are we even rolling dice for this?" and "what happens if we just don't support this at all?".

    And maybe, like, "why do this with the PCs instead of 50 townsmen with crossbows?"
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    Dogbert
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    PostPosted: Tue Oct 03, 2017 1:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Niles wrote:
    Even if you could make it work, it would be just as much effort and a lot more confusion for your players than learning a new system.


    That reminds me the reason I originally got burned out of d&d years ago. I'm never again playing a game where you need more houserules than core rules.
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    Lago PARANOIA
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    PostPosted: Tue Oct 03, 2017 1:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    To also give an idea of how out of whack the difficulty is:

    The Light Cleric is level 13. He has an AC of 26 from passively gear, which makes him mostly unhittable except against complete brutes, and even then he has Shield of Faith/Sanctuary/Warding Bond/Warding Flare for insurance. When he wants to lay the smack down, he throws down with a Sacred Flame + Spirit Guardians + Wall of Fire. If he wants single-target damage, he throws out a Hex gained from Magic Initiate (abusing the retargeting caveat to get it on demand) + Scorching Ray. When he REALLY wants to lay the smack down, he summons a Cuoatl with Conjure Celestial, orders it to shift into a Warlock of the Archfey to use Conjure Fey for an Annis Hag. There's even more fuckery he could do, but he intentionally sandbags.

    The Lore Bard MC'ed a level of Sorcerer so he could use the Staff of Power he got from the Strahd adventure. Because a lot of saves run off of checks and not actual saving throws, he can pretty much lockdown anything but Legendary Save monsters with Phantasmal Force + Cutting Words, especially because Intelligence is a bad saving throw/ability check for even high-CR monsters. He also used his Magical Secrets to get Conjure Animal and Conjure Woodland Beings. I haven't seen him use CWB at my table, but Conjure Animals is enough; 8 Dimetrodons is usually enough ass-whooping to take all but high-AC monsters, which there aren't many.

    I play a level 14 Bladesinger myself. My passive AC with Bracers of Defense + Mage Armor is pretty high (24 when bladesinging, but unlike the Light Cleric I have Shield on speed-dial) but what really cinches it is when I cast Blur, Protection from Evil, or Greater Invis. I more-or-less become unhittable. My damage is also pretty boss; if I have Haste up, between my Ild Rune'd Shortsword in the offhand and my Flametongue shortsword in my main hand, I have maximum damage of 3 x _mainhand(1d6 base + 2d6 fire + 4 dex + 5 intelligence) + _offhand (1d6 base + 1d6 fire + 5 intelligence), average 11d6 + 32 damage. But oftentimes I don't even bother. I have Conjure Elemental to slap down an Earth/Air Elemental or even a Galeb Duhr. Depending on my mood, I put up a Contingency with Resilient Sphere, Bigby's Hand, or Melf's Minute Meteors in it. I also have Mass Suggestion, Sunbeam, and Reverse Gravity. Did I also mention that I have a Tome of the Stilled Tongue for extra usages of my high-level spell slots? My decisions generally boil down to 'how much ass do I want to kick today'. If I'm feeling nice, I throw a Haste or a Greater Invis on another party member. If not, well, there's my arsenal.

    I haven't casted Simulacrum yet, mostly because I'm worried that the game will implode if I do. I'm thinking of using it on the party assassin and ordering it to follow said assassin's directives so they won't feel so small in the pants.
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    Josh Kablack wrote:
    Your freedom to make rulings up on the fly is in direct conflict with my freedom to interact with an internally consistent narrative. Your freedom to run/play a game without needing to understand a complex rule system is in direct conflict with my freedom to play a character whose abilities and flaws function as I intended within that ruleset. Your freedom to add and change rules in the middle of the game is in direct conflict with my ability to understand that rules system before I decided whether or not to join your game.

    In short, your entire post is dismissive of not merely my intelligence, but my agency. And I don't mean agency as a player within one of your games, I mean my agency as a person. You do not want me to be informed when I make the fundamental decisions of deciding whether to join your game or buying your rules system.
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    Mord
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    PostPosted: Tue Oct 03, 2017 2:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    angelfromanotherpin wrote:
    You seem confused. I'm not contesting 'is Malory low fantasy,' it obviously is by both definitions. I asked: 'can anyone name an actually completely mundane Arthurian story as Cham claimed 50% of such stories are.' And your answer has been, so far as I can tell: 'Yes, if I'm allowed to count my own rewrites that remove all fantastic elements.' Sure, if you wanted to, you could even rewrite them so many times that they were 50% or even 99% of all Arthurian stories. It's kind of cheating, though.

    In point of fact, my answer to that question was: "yes, I can name a completely mundane Arthurian story, because I consider Morte Book VI Chapter XVI, Wherein Sir Launcelot Beats A Man To Death With Tree Parts, to meet my criteria to qualify as a 'story.'" Since you do not accept that, preferring a different definition of "story," our disagreement has reached the point where all we can do to continue the conversation is curse at one another.

    angelfromanotherpin wrote:
    It's actually my Medieval Lit professor's interpretation that I happen to agree with. It was written for an audience whose context for adultery was 'possible casus belli.' It was serious shit, and in every period story where the knight and the married lady actually get together, the ending is bad; sometimes it's just T&I bad and they die horribly, sometimes it's full Lancelot & Guinevere bad and the whole kingdom falls. It wasn't subtle.


    Well... except for that time Tristram banged Sir Segwarides' wife and didn't suffer any particular consequences (except his rival Mark setting him up for really disastrous adultery later). And Uther banged Igraine and everything worked out OK, but her husband might have been dead at that point, so no harm no foul?

    I guess the moral of the story is, "if you want to bang someone's wife, make sure you kill him first, and also it's not worth your time to play Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition." Which is actually two pretty good morals in one! I'm really enjoying BetterMyths, btw. Thanks for the link!
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    Voss
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    PostPosted: Tue Oct 03, 2017 3:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Lago wrote:
    I'm playing Tomb of Annihilation and our level 2 party of six people got its shit wrecked by a bunch of Velociraptors in a random encounter, with enough of them to bring up the CR to 2.

    Hrmm. Velociraptors are kind of obscene (multi attack and advantage on CR 1/4 critters is absurd), but... 'bring the CR to 2' isn't how the encounter system is supposed to function, even ignoring the 'number of monsters' multiplier.

    Granted it's bullshit regardless because the system ignores too much, but I'm kind of curious which way the DM went with it.

    I can definitely see reasons why someone would think that 6, 8 or 12 would be a normal (medium) encounter for 6 2nd level characters, but the reasoning to get to each is interesting.

    The sane approach is 8 raptors * 1/4 CR = CR 2, because numbers should add together and this method is actually straightforward and consistent with older editions. It isn't actually right and produces results that are off from 5e's assumptions, since 5e builds encounters by XP values per PC and desired challenge (easy, medium, hard and fuck you). For 6 level 2 characters, a medium encounter is 600, and this approach actually yields 50*8 * (the # of monster multiplier for 8, which is 2.5), so 1000, which is above the 'xp budget' for hard yet not quite a 'deadly' encounter for a party of that size.


    Alternately, the could have used the XP budget thats in the book, but ignored the number of monsters multiplier, because that seems like bullshit. This is actually the worst result, as it sets up 12 velociraptors (12*50=600), and ignores the fact that the system thinks this is 1800 XP encounter (x3 multiplier with 12 monster), well past a hard encounter for a level 3 party of 6.

    If they actually used the # multiplier, the encounter should have been 6 velociraptors- 50 each with a x2 modifier, so are 600 xp (in terms of challenge, but still only 300 xp in terms of award).

    So was it 6, 8 or 12, or some other number?
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    Lago PARANOIA
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    PostPosted: Tue Oct 03, 2017 3:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    8 velociraptors. We're hex-exploring Chult and the DM rolled up 3d6 velociraptors. Granted, you also have to factor into account that we've never had more than one encounter per long rest yet, but still.

    Don't get me wrong. Even if it had resulted in a TPK, it would've still been one of the most enjoyable experiences of 5E D&D. But the difficulty of 5E D&D is really out of whack, mostly because monster CR is assigned by hit points and defenses. There are some CR 4 monsters that will completely wreck your shit as a level 7 character while there are also some CR 8 monsters who are complete jokes to the same character.
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    Josh Kablack wrote:
    Your freedom to make rulings up on the fly is in direct conflict with my freedom to interact with an internally consistent narrative. Your freedom to run/play a game without needing to understand a complex rule system is in direct conflict with my freedom to play a character whose abilities and flaws function as I intended within that ruleset. Your freedom to add and change rules in the middle of the game is in direct conflict with my ability to understand that rules system before I decided whether or not to join your game.

    In short, your entire post is dismissive of not merely my intelligence, but my agency. And I don't mean agency as a player within one of your games, I mean my agency as a person. You do not want me to be informed when I make the fundamental decisions of deciding whether to join your game or buying your rules system.


    Last edited by Lago PARANOIA on Tue Oct 03, 2017 4:01 am; edited 1 time in total
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    JonSetanta
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    PostPosted: Tue Oct 03, 2017 4:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Lago PARANOIA wrote:
    8 velociraptors. We're hex-exploring Chult and the DM rolled up 3d6 velociraptors. Granted, you also have to factor into account that we've never had more than one encounter per long rest yet, but still.


    I envy you. My DM(s) run us through gauntlets before we get our powers and HP back every session.
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    Lago PARANOIA
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    PostPosted: Tue Oct 03, 2017 4:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    JonSetanta wrote:
    Lago PARANOIA wrote:
    8 velociraptors. We're hex-exploring Chult and the DM rolled up 3d6 velociraptors. Granted, you also have to factor into account that we've never had more than one encounter per long rest yet, but still.


    I envy you. My DM(s) run us through gauntlets before we get our powers and HP back every session.
    Do you play custom games or hardcovers? I've mostly played hardcovers, and my experience is that the natural pacing of the game and quest encourages rests that are much more frequent than the game assumes.
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    Josh Kablack wrote:
    Your freedom to make rulings up on the fly is in direct conflict with my freedom to interact with an internally consistent narrative. Your freedom to run/play a game without needing to understand a complex rule system is in direct conflict with my freedom to play a character whose abilities and flaws function as I intended within that ruleset. Your freedom to add and change rules in the middle of the game is in direct conflict with my ability to understand that rules system before I decided whether or not to join your game.

    In short, your entire post is dismissive of not merely my intelligence, but my agency. And I don't mean agency as a player within one of your games, I mean my agency as a person. You do not want me to be informed when I make the fundamental decisions of deciding whether to join your game or buying your rules system.
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    Voss
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    PostPosted: Tue Oct 03, 2017 4:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Lago PARANOIA wrote:
    8 velociraptors. We're hex-exploring Chult and the DM rolled up 3d6 velociraptors. Granted, you also have to factor into account that we've never had more than one encounter per long rest yet, but still.

    Oh, random numbers for random encounters. That's positively frightening for 5e, with results from 'why did we bother drawing weapons' to 'this TPK is so awful'
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    Lago PARANOIA
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    PostPosted: Tue Oct 03, 2017 4:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Voss wrote:
    Lago PARANOIA wrote:
    8 velociraptors. We're hex-exploring Chult and the DM rolled up 3d6 velociraptors. Granted, you also have to factor into account that we've never had more than one encounter per long rest yet, but still.

    Oh, random numbers for random encounters. That's positively frightening for 5e, with results from 'why did we bother drawing weapons' to 'this TPK is so awful'
    I gotta be honest: I don't mind getting a TPK at low level from rolling up an unwinnable situation so long as they aren't frequent. And so long as the DM has a way to recover from that situation. Even if it's as contrived as 'meanwhile, four hexes away:'. My DM is a pretty big stickler for playing it by the books + Sage Advice, so I don't know how he'd react in such a situation, but still.
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    Josh Kablack wrote:
    Your freedom to make rulings up on the fly is in direct conflict with my freedom to interact with an internally consistent narrative. Your freedom to run/play a game without needing to understand a complex rule system is in direct conflict with my freedom to play a character whose abilities and flaws function as I intended within that ruleset. Your freedom to add and change rules in the middle of the game is in direct conflict with my ability to understand that rules system before I decided whether or not to join your game.

    In short, your entire post is dismissive of not merely my intelligence, but my agency. And I don't mean agency as a player within one of your games, I mean my agency as a person. You do not want me to be informed when I make the fundamental decisions of deciding whether to join your game or buying your rules system.
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    Cervantes
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    PostPosted: Tue Oct 03, 2017 6:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Dogbert wrote:
    Niles wrote:
    Even if you could make it work, it would be just as much effort and a lot more confusion for your players than learning a new system.


    That reminds me the reason I originally got burned out of d&d years ago. I'm never again playing a game where you need more houserules than core rules.
    It really does depend on the kind of houserules and the kind of material you have at your disposal to work with. DnD has a shitload of supplementary materials so if it's not too hard to "translate" the crunchy stuff into your houseruled version of the crunchy stuff you get access to all of it.
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    JonSetanta
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    PostPosted: Tue Oct 03, 2017 6:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Lago PARANOIA wrote:
    Do you play custom games or hardcovers? I've mostly played hardcovers, and my experience is that the natural pacing of the game and quest encourages rests that are much more frequent than the game assumes.


    Both, actually. Depends on the DM.
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    PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 12:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Cervantes wrote:
    It really does depend on the kind of houserules and the kind of material you have at your disposal to work with.


    Irrelevant. Even if you only used 5 houserules, they'd still be more than 5E's core rules. 9000 times zero is still zero.

    I don't sign blank cheques with my time, and to commit 4 hours of my time to your game, I better know what game I'm playing... which is exactly the breaking point for 5E, because it was made just the exact degree of incomplete that you can't play it without houserules (among which I include MTP), so you won't find 2 5E tables that actually play the same game.
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    Lago PARANOIA
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    PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 1:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    JonSetanta wrote:
    Lago PARANOIA wrote:
    Do you play custom games or hardcovers? I've mostly played hardcovers, and my experience is that the natural pacing of the game and quest encourages rests that are much more frequent than the game assumes.


    Both, actually. Depends on the DM.
    Then I really don't know how you aren't able to rest more frequently short of explicit DM cockblocking. Random encounters while traveling are usually once a day, dungeons rarely have more challenging encounters than five total, and the way the adventure design is set up you generally have time between rests.
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    Josh Kablack wrote:
    Your freedom to make rulings up on the fly is in direct conflict with my freedom to interact with an internally consistent narrative. Your freedom to run/play a game without needing to understand a complex rule system is in direct conflict with my freedom to play a character whose abilities and flaws function as I intended within that ruleset. Your freedom to add and change rules in the middle of the game is in direct conflict with my ability to understand that rules system before I decided whether or not to join your game.

    In short, your entire post is dismissive of not merely my intelligence, but my agency. And I don't mean agency as a player within one of your games, I mean my agency as a person. You do not want me to be informed when I make the fundamental decisions of deciding whether to join your game or buying your rules system.
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    maglag
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    PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 7:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Dogbert wrote:
    Cervantes wrote:
    It really does depend on the kind of houserules and the kind of material you have at your disposal to work with.


    Irrelevant. Even if you only used 5 houserules, they'd still be more than 5E's core rules. 9000 times zero is still zero.

    I don't sign blank cheques with my time, and to commit 4 hours of my time to your game, I better know what game I'm playing... which is exactly the breaking point for 5E, because it was made just the exact degree of incomplete that you can't play it without houserules (among which I include MTP), so you won't find 2 5E tables that actually play the same game.


    So you never played any 3.X either? Because every one of those tables are playing slightly different games as well. 3rd edition can't be played without houserules either (wish loops, candle of invocation, shadow apocalypse, you name it), and each group has their own preferences on how to deal with that.

    Heck, a good chunk of Frank's tomes are him pointing out the multiple parts where 3rd edition doesn't work by default.
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    PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 8:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    maglag wrote:
    So you never played any 3.X either?


    Are you really comparing the signal-to-noise ratio in 3.X with that of 5E? REALLY? And to think people accuse me of abusing hyperbole.

    While indeed 3.X was the game that made me say Never Again to any game that required more houserules or splats than I have fingers in my hand for proper enjoyment, at least d20 has enough stable, coherent rules to be mostly considered a standard (also, they're stated as rules, not "suggestions").

    Standards are good, they gave us pretty things like language, computers, and the internet... and in this context, they let you know which game you're playing.
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    Voss
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    PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 3:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Dogbert wrote:
    maglag wrote:
    So you never played any 3.X either?


    Are you really comparing the signal-to-noise ratio in 3.X with that of 5E? REALLY? And to think people accuse me of abusing hyperbole.

    Actually, that is what I thought you meant as well. Because when you get right down to it, 5e doesn't have a high signal to noise ratio- simply for lacking any real amount of output in 3 books and 2 optional extras (3 next month). Signal to noise ratio implies a lot of product, something that defines 3rd (and 4th) or pathfinder, but very much not 5e.


    It isn't a good game by any stretch, but it doesn't need that much in the way of house rules to function. Neither did 3rd, but 3rd had a lot of dumpster diver bullshit quickly, and fucktons by the end.

    5e's rules are vague, but if it isn't combat or saves, in general you're rolling against a DC of 15, 20 or 25 depending on the difficulty. It's a little vague and very unsatisfying for complex tasks, but it's there (p238) and straightforward.

    Like most editions of D&D, the fleshed out part of the system revolves around combat time.


    Last edited by Voss on Wed Oct 04, 2017 3:40 pm; edited 1 time in total
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    Lago PARANOIA
    Invincible Overlord


    Joined: 25 Sep 2008
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    PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 4:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Voss wrote:
    Signal to noise ratio implies a lot of product, something that defines 3rd (and 4th) or pathfinder, but very much not 5e.
    Of course, the low signal-to-noise ratio is more reflective of 5E D&D's anemic release schedule and skeleton crew rather than any internal merit.

    Which might be fine for diehards who love to dwindle under the delusion of balance, but it's absolute murder for any long-term health of the hobby.
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    Josh Kablack wrote:
    Your freedom to make rulings up on the fly is in direct conflict with my freedom to interact with an internally consistent narrative. Your freedom to run/play a game without needing to understand a complex rule system is in direct conflict with my freedom to play a character whose abilities and flaws function as I intended within that ruleset. Your freedom to add and change rules in the middle of the game is in direct conflict with my ability to understand that rules system before I decided whether or not to join your game.

    In short, your entire post is dismissive of not merely my intelligence, but my agency. And I don't mean agency as a player within one of your games, I mean my agency as a person. You do not want me to be informed when I make the fundamental decisions of deciding whether to join your game or buying your rules system.
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    Voss
    Prince


    Joined: 07 Mar 2008
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    PostPosted: Thu Oct 05, 2017 1:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Oh, yeah. That is exactly what I mean. It's low because there has been close to nothing over three years, especially in the area of player options.

    But at this stage I'm not terribly convinced the available alternative is significantly better. The sheer spamming of absolute drek for Pathfinder is a big turnoff for me, especially with the launch of Starfinder, which was significantly worse than I expected. The amount of trap options and pure bullshit in the core rulebook is a horrifying demonstration of Paizo's proficiency in fucking things up. It even just straight up fails at genre emulation at multiple points.

    Basically at the moment, for D&D-alikes, we're stuck with virtually unsupported or spammed with garbage. And a don't expect that the Beholder Crimelord's Book of Random Shit and Reprints is going to change that.


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    Aryxbez
    Knight-Baron


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    PostPosted: Sat Oct 07, 2017 8:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Lago PARANOIA wrote:
    To also give an idea of how out of whack the difficulty is:


    Weird, I totally thought it was Frank posting about 5E, but instead I get to welcome Lago PARANOIA back (strange, no profile pic, especially of a video game or other). Your Higher level party sounds pretty awesome, and probably the best example of cool things in 5e I didn't think quite possible.

    Anyway, how much do the capabilities of the PC's to take on multiple foes scale through the levels? (up to 14th, for both PC/Groups you ran with) If the party with Light Cleric, Multiclass-Lore Bard, Your Bladesinger (whomever else is applicable) stopped sandbagging and unleashed your Party's Full Power, how many minion-like enemies would you be able to take down before being Overwhelmed?

    I really want to find the "Magic Number" to how many minion/NPC's it can take throughout levels 1-14, till the party is considered to get wiped out. Not really any hard data on that here that I'm aware of, and been implied to me that number is actually quite small (10 or less), especially w/Velociraptor example (8 CR 1/4's vs 6 PCs of 2nd lv).
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    What I find wrong w/ 4th edition: "I want to stab dragons the size of a small keep with skin like supple adamantine and command over time and space to death with my longsword in head to head combat, but I want to be totally within realistic capabilities of a real human being!" --Caedrus mocking 4rries

    "the thing about being Mister Cavern [DM], you don't blame players for how they play. That's like blaming the weather. Weather just is. You adapt to it. -Ancient History
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    FrankTrollman
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    PostPosted: Sat Oct 07, 2017 11:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    The key to dealing with large numbers of low level bullshit enemies is AC whoring. If you get your AC out to 24 or so, most creatures that aren't major demons or dragons only hit you on a 20. And while that means that you get criticalled every time you get hit at all (because 5e is a bad game), you can still frequently get your healing on to the point where you can pretty much stabilize while holding a corridor against virtually limitless numbers of goblins.

    Without that, things get real bad real fast. If enemies are hitting you on even a 17+, you pretty much aren't going to be able to heal up damage that enemies can do to you. We worked out the number of 1st level skirmishing archers it would take to take down a Pit Fiend and it was in the low thirties.

    -Frank
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    maglag
    Duke


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    PostPosted: Sat Oct 07, 2017 2:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    In 3e it takes a single CR 3 core monster to take out the Tarrasque itself. And the 3e battle doesn't even need any mounts for extra mobility or infinite open fields, the CR 3 undead plain neuters the tarrasque in melee in any terrain.
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    Actually, our blood banking system is set up exactly the way you'd want it to be if you were a secret vampire conspiracy.
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    Lago PARANOIA
    Invincible Overlord


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    PostPosted: Sat Oct 07, 2017 2:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    Aryxbez wrote:
    Anyway, how much do the capabilities of the PC's to take on multiple foes scale through the levels?
    Eh. It's unclear. You can very easily reach a point where you, a decently optimized PC party, can take on literal hundreds of horse archers and not give a fuck. If you really want some hot, fresh cheese upcasted Conjure Animals + Animal Shapes makes you go lolno to any arbitrary number of horse archers you can fit on a battlefield. And that's far from the only trick. Mirage Arcana + Illusory Reality, a pile of arrows you cast Antipathy/Sympathy on earlier, or even just Being A Moon Druid and shapeshifting into infinite hp.

    However, as I alluded to earlier, there are some monsters that are going to give you a bad time no matter what your CR is. Four or five Hobgoblin Devastators (CR 4) are going to rock your world even at level 15. The real threat to high-level characters (at least the spellcasters) aren't hordes of skeletons or Mongol Archers, but a guild of low and mid-level spellcasters. Your only real hope is to get lucky on the initiative rolls and alpha strike them.
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    Josh Kablack wrote:
    Your freedom to make rulings up on the fly is in direct conflict with my freedom to interact with an internally consistent narrative. Your freedom to run/play a game without needing to understand a complex rule system is in direct conflict with my freedom to play a character whose abilities and flaws function as I intended within that ruleset. Your freedom to add and change rules in the middle of the game is in direct conflict with my ability to understand that rules system before I decided whether or not to join your game.

    In short, your entire post is dismissive of not merely my intelligence, but my agency. And I don't mean agency as a player within one of your games, I mean my agency as a person. You do not want me to be informed when I make the fundamental decisions of deciding whether to join your game or buying your rules system.
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    RobbyPants
    Prince


    Joined: 06 Aug 2008
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    PostPosted: Mon Oct 09, 2017 5:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

    maglag wrote:
    In 3e it takes a single CR 3 core monster to take out the Tarrasque itself.

    Which monster is that? My first thought was the shadow, but the tarrasque is immune to energy damage.
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