What Was Gygax Thinking?

raniE

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So you're saying that 5e is supporting my assessment? I was actually basing it more on "a Fighter in the old editions deals an extra attack to every opponent around him" and other such things, but I'm glad 5e actually agrees for once.

I'm saying a high strength fighter is absolutely superhuman at level 8 yes. They're stronger and tougher than an ogre, can do superhuman feats of athleticism and fighting etc. So it sounds like the same idea at least.

The bone-headed DC table coupled with lack of examples, actually, coupled with my opinion of corporations in general...and also the fact that the whole edition seems to be based around the assumption of everybody having loads of magic&magic items by the levels where the numbers you pointed above would become relevant:grin:!

Many games were made by corporations. Say what you want about TSR for instance, but in the chapter about height, weight, age and such they specifically mentioned the world's tallest and shortest humans, as well as the longest lived ones (as of 1989 at least). I'd say 5e actually has far less of an idea that everyone has magic items than many other versions of D&D, including old school games, and a lot of the magic is toned down from earlier editions of the game. Yes, in general D&D is high magic compared to many other games, but that's part of the buy-in.
I mean, all the other classes had Misty Step or equivalent, right? The only "problem" was that the fighter didn't have a Ring of Misty Step, 5/day, or the like...:devil:

No, some specific classes had Misty Step available and all had chosen it and all were willing to give up a limited resource to use it.

I've had a GMing friend commenting on the table a couple years ago, BTW. He likes D&D a lot more than me, and he was...less charitable than I would have been. So it kinda stuck in my memory.

Also, it's not about D&D, it's more about WotC. I mean, their designers are the ones who gave almost all the classes Misty Step, not me...right?
(I'd have given it to all classes, so we know it's not me:gunslinger:).

Mike Mearls, who was lead designer of D&D 5e, hasn't been in charge for years at this point. Thus any rules bloat or class bloat that has happened didn't happen under exactly the same designers, so this point doesn't really make sense.

I suspect Keving Crawford's games, as a counterexample, would have better-researched DCs and better balance that wouldn't leave the Fighter in the acid-filled ditch. In fact, I remember that the DCs worked fine when I tried to run Scarlet Heroes.

I don't know about that. We just (as in 5 minutes ago) did a session of converting our 5e characters to Worlds Without Number, so I have the rule book open in pdf and I can't really find any guidelines at all for jumping. So if my character wants to jump, it's up to the GM to make a ruling as to how difficult that is, same as in 5e if your character wants to jump further than their jump distance. So up to the GM, or the group in concert, to try to figure out what a reasonable jumping distance is, how over the top they want the characters to be etc. Only difference is you don't even have a starting point, for good or ill. Can a good GM who knows (or can look up) what typical and elite values for jumping are still make a good ruling here? Of course. But the same is true for 5e. So if I wanted to do super heroic fighters I might let them make an athletics check and just add the result to their base value. You can regularly long jump 25 feet, you rolled a 9, ok you clear 34 feet this time. You can also have the failure effect be "you don't think you can make this jump" rather than "you fall in the acid". And the same holds for WWN.
 
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Fenris-77

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My main complaint about 5E (although I have many) is how a lot of the low level abilities completely trivialize a lot of common low level concerns. Having to carry rations is a joke when you have the Goodberry spell, for example. Shit like that. Granted, my distaste here is because I actually like running D&D in that Old School fashion where resource management is a big part of low level play. I'm sure there are lots of people who hate that shit and think 5E is just grand because it's pretty handwavey about it.
 

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5e is the edition where the designers realised everyone likes cake, so they just handed out lots of cake and there was no one around to say "Mabye all cake all the time is a bad idea - maybe we should keep it as the occasional treat".
 

TristramEvans

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My main complaint about 5E (although I have many) is how a lot of the low level abilities completely trivialize a lot of common low level concerns. Having to carry rations is a joke when you have the Goodberry spell, for example. Shit like that. Granted, my distaste here is because I actually like running D&D in that Old School fashion where resource management is a big part of low level play. I'm sure there are lots of people who hate that shit and think 5E is just grand because it's pretty handwavey about it.

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A Fiery Flying Roll

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People in 2000-02 (or at least 01-02) were definitely talking about using the d20 license and/or Hackmaster to create new de-facto 1E adventures - it was a big topic of discussion on Rob Kuntz’s old Proboard forum site (somewhat ironically, since Rob himself insisted d20 was the way forward and trying to stick with the old system made no commercial sense). But you’re right that the idea of creating not just new adventures but a whole new/old system didn’t really come up until TLG announced Casties & Crusades in 2003, and while the initial sales pitch for that was that it was going to bring back an “AD&D-like” system (and allow Gary to publish Castle Zagyg, after his deal to do it for Hackmaster through KenzerCo fell apart in 02) I’m sure the motivation on the TLG side was as much or more about getting out from under the thumb of WotC in the wake of the 3.5 fiasco.
Where does Mazes and Minotaurs fit in here? Proto OSR maybe or old school without technically being OSR as it wasn't part of the design movement per se? (Also, is it the first RPG to use early D&D as a base for its own game or are there earlier ones?)
 

Fenris-77

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Question: What Was Gygax Thinking?
Answer: Polearms! Lots of polearms. Polearms for breakfast. Polearms for lunch. Polearms for dinner. Polearms for everyone!
There is only one action declaration: I use my Glaive-guisarme! I might possibly allow I use my Bec De Corbin! but only if the player is brand new.
 

raniE

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My main complaint about 5E (although I have many) is how a lot of the low level abilities completely trivialize a lot of common low level concerns. Having to carry rations is a joke when you have the Goodberry spell, for example. Shit like that. Granted, my distaste here is because I actually like running D&D in that Old School fashion where resource management is a big part of low level play. I'm sure there are lots of people who hate that shit and think 5E is just grand because it's pretty handwavey about it.
I'm not a big fan of that either, but it's not like that stuff didn't exist in earlier D&D editions. Sure, Goodberry used to be a level 2 spell, so only available from character level 3 (when you're supposed to start venturing outside the dungeon and rations become more important) but both Create Water and Purify Food and Drink are 1st level spells in TSR D&D and that will get you through a lot of/most survival situations. D&D was always high magic. I think most parties in low level 5e would prefer to carry rations and let the Druid cast a different spell instead.
 

Fenris-77

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I'm not a big fan of that either, but it's not like that stuff didn't exist in earlier D&D editions. Sure, Goodberry used to be a level 2 spell, so only available from character level 3 (when you're supposed to start venturing outside the dungeon and rations become more important) but both Create Water and Purify Food and Drink are 1st level spells in TSR D&D and that will get you through a lot of/most survival situations. D&D was always high magic. I think most parties in low level 5e would prefer to carry rations and let the Druid cast a different spell instead.
The fact that it existed in some form is very different that it being the same as what we see in 5E. I agree, there were spells that helped the characters out with the resource management play loop, but in nothing like the way 5E does, and this extends to other things like the proliferation of short range teleports spells at low levels. As a GM that enjoys old school D&D play, I can state with confidence that 5E is a tough beast to run that kind of game in.

The difference between Goodberry as a 1st level spell and a 2nd level spell is enormous btw, not at all a trivial difference. Availability by level, availability to half casters, and the opportunity cost of multiple castings all really change the impact there.
 

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Where does Mazes and Minotaurs fit in here? Proto OSR maybe or old school without technically being OSR as it wasn't part of the design movement per se? (Also, is it the first RPG to use early D&D as a base for its own game or are there earlier ones?)
Mazes & Minotaurs grew out of an entirely different scene, the same as Encounter Critical. Both of those games seemed to take inspiration from Hackmaster’s “double immersive” idea of being false artifacts of an alternate-history past so there’s a lot of ironic intentionally retro and jokey stuff in them. These were games for people who wanted to dress up like Danny Masterson on That 70s Show and listen to 8-tracks and pretend they don’t know anything about the real-world history of rpgs. The Jeff Rients school, more or less.

That was a very different vibe than the people at Dragonsfoot and Rob Kuntz’s forum who still played and took the old editions seriously and wanted to revive their style and approach not in a “retro” jokey way but in a straight-faced serious-minded way. C&C and BFRPG and OSRIC weren’t at all jokey or ironic or intentionally retro.

We had mixed feelings about Hackmaster, because on the one hand it more-or-less preserved the AD&D rules engine, but it did so in a jokey/ironic way that a lot of the time felt like we (the actual old-school players) were being made the butt of the joke - that playing our way (or, rather, a cartoon exaggeration of our way) was a pose or an act, not something you were supposed to actually believe or invest in non-ironically. And those other games weren’t on our radar at all until a few years later when people started pointing back and them and claiming they were the true origin of the OSR.
 

AsenRG

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I appreciate the vote of confidence and no I don't give out teleport as a class ability. As for the debate between you and raniE raniE, you are both right and wrong about 5e.
:thumbsup:

With OD&D, characters don't have much differentiation. Outside of combat and spellcasting not a lot distinguishes one character from another. Even with combat and spellcasting, especially with just the 3 LBB, there isn't a lot of difference in capability except when you start going beyond 9th level when magic-user and to a lesser extent clerics really come into their own. But even then, if fighters have magic items they gain some options.
I've always believed those attribute things should also determine other stuff...like how far you can jump, for example:shade:.


Flipping it back to 5e, broadly speaking the power curve and character capabilities mirror that of OD&D.
...now that's a claim I hadn't heard in a long time:shock:!

To me, the flaws of 5e is that they put way too much thought into how it functions as a game and not how it reflects the life of a D&Dish vaguely medieval fantasy setting. The stuff outside of spellcasting and combat even now is pretty thin on the mechanics. Plus Wizards opted to spread all of it over 20 levels worth of advancement.
And that is probably expressing why I wouldn't expect their design team to have bothered referencing current world records...:grin:
Game, not reflection of life in the setting. Works for some, drives others of us up the wall (no skillcheck required).

I'm saying a high strength fighter is absolutely superhuman at level 8 yes. They're stronger and tougher than an ogre, can do superhuman feats of athleticism and fighting etc. So it sounds like the same idea at least.
Works for me.

Many games were made by corporations. Say what you want about TSR for instance, but in the chapter about height, weight, age and such they specifically mentioned the world's tallest and shortest humans, as well as the longest lived ones (as of 1989 at least). I'd say 5e actually has far less of an idea that everyone has magic items than many other versions of D&D, including old school games, and a lot of the magic is toned down from earlier editions of the game. Yes, in general D&D is high magic compared to many other games, but that's part of the buy-in.
I'm fine with high-magic in a high-magic setting. What drives me up the wall is when the same system is suggested for use in a low-magic setting.

But I'd disagree that "magic is toned down in 5e" - well, it is probably...when compared to 3e, but that's hardly anything to brag about. From what I remember from when reading the spell lists and magic items, magic resolving previous issues like food and movement is only becoming more prevalent!
Misty Step, Goodberry and other such effects were already mentioned in the thread.
It's not about the power of a single effect, it's about how widely spread such effects are.

And robertsconley robertsconley actually nailed my general feeling about 5e - it's a reflection of game mechanics and attempts to create a fair game to an extent where it actually hampers, IMO, actually representing the life in the setting.
But no, I'm not actually planning to write you a dissertation explaining "why I have such a feeling", or why I'm of the opinion that TSR-era editions paid more attention to this. I'm definitely not the only one, as you probably know full well.

I don't know about that. We just (as in 5 minutes ago) did a session of converting our 5e characters to Worlds Without Number, so I have the rule book open in pdf and I can't really find any guidelines at all for jumping. So if my character wants to jump, it's up to the GM to make a ruling as to how difficult that is, same as in 5e if your character wants to jump further than their jump distance. So up to the GM, or the group in concert, to try to figure out what a reasonable jumping distance is, how over the top they want the characters to be etc. Only difference is you don't even have a starting point, for good or ill. Can a good GM who knows (or can look up) what typical and elite values for jumping are still make a good ruling here? Of course. But the same is true for 5e. So if I wanted to do super heroic fighters I might let them make an athletics check and just add the result to their base value. You can regularly long jump 25 feet, you rolled a 9, ok you clear 34 feet this time. You can also have the failure effect be "you don't think you can make this jump" rather than "you fall in the acid". And the same holds for WWN.
OK, maybe I overestimated KC. I'll check my copies of other games of his, but tomorrow.
The point still stands.

My main complaint about 5E (although I have many) is how a lot of the low level abilities completely trivialize a lot of common low level concerns. Having to carry rations is a joke when you have the Goodberry spell, for example. Shit like that. Granted, my distaste here is because I actually like running D&D in that Old School fashion where resource management is a big part of low level play. I'm sure there are lots of people who hate that shit and think 5E is just grand because it's pretty handwavey about it.

5e is the edition where the designers realised everyone likes cake, so they just handed out lots of cake and there was no one around to say "Mabye all cake all the time is a bad idea - maybe we should keep it as the occasional treat".
Yup, same idea as the one stated above. Good game that people would want to play 5e might be/obviously is; a reflection of life in the setting it ain't, and IMO isn't meant to be.


Question: What Was Gygax Thinking?
Answer: Polearms! Lots of polearms. Polearms for breakfast. Polearms for lunch. Polearms for dinner. Polearms for everyone!
For every Fighting Man, you mean? Other than that, I agree.
 

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There’s absolutely no difference there between D&D and any other system. Any rule set can be described in a shit way. “Regular hit. Regular parry.” “I hit. Parry fails. 3 damage. Does not go through armor.” So no, this is incorrect because the descriptions of what’s happening being good or bad are almost completely disconnected from what game system you’re using.

RPGs all require player skill, because describing what is happening or what a character is doing in an interesting way is a skill, and it is generally disconnected from the actual game rules being used.
There absolutely is a difference. If the system has armor as damage reduction, it distinguishes between hitting and missing, and hitting but having the damage entirely stopped, or hitting and having some damage get through. It's immediately obvious what is going on, you don't need to do any extra work. And even if the GM isn't going out of their way to narrate the combat and just describes the mechanical effects, you instantly have a picture of what is going on, with a lot more detail than you get with D&D.
 
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All those that were created in the 70ies and 80ies and those that strive for the same approach today.
Though if you ask my daughter, that would include those from the 90ies, 00s and 10s:thumbsup:

I think this is my issue with "old school", I just don't believe there really is a large difference in attitude between the early games and more recent games. Are there some current games that are going for a much different experience, sure but they are the outliers, not "the old school" which to me are just games, same as it ever was.

I will admit is is possible that my taste in games may be so imbedded in "old school" gaming that I can't see the forest for the trees.

Eh, technically, “OSR” started being bandied about after the 2003 release of 3.5. and really ramped up after the release of 4e in 2008 (and the yanking of all the TSR PDFs). WotC tried to move on from the OGL and memory hole TSR and well…Paizo took over the #1 spot.

In 2000-2002, there wasn’t this big push to reproduce TSR-D&D, the people playing it - just kept playing it.

2E came out in 1989 so AD&D books were still pretty easy to find in 2000, and ebay was a good source for old games by that time. Copies of the older games took a long time to dry up reducing a lot of the demand for a "new", "old" D&D. By the later 2000s this was changing, finding good copies of the older books cheap was getting a little harder and of course new options were appearing.

You can't really start a new category of game, when there isn't much to put in it. I'm sure 4E did nothing to stem the tide of a growing movement.

Depends on if there’s more than one there. :shade:


I'd bet on the far more likely "nobody writing those rules knew what the world record for long jump was, nobody bothered to check, and everyone was more interested in how that would fit the 5-feet squares than how it would represent the conditioning of PCs", myself...:angel:

Getting basic human stats wrong is pretty common, particularly in the pre-internet / early internet era. Pre-internet I bet The Guiness Book of World Records was a common source for such stats, and those were just world records, the extremes.
These days a quick google search can not only bring up world records, but the history of the records, average performance, high end performance, median performance etc. Finding information has just become so easy since the 2010s, more stuff is online and the search engines are so much more efficient than the AOL and Yahoo days.

Empire of the Petal Throne was first, I believe. View attachment 55359

Pretty sure Petal Throne was still earlier, but can't forget about Arduin.
 

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I suspect Keving Crawford's games, as a counterexample, would have better-researched DCs and better balance that wouldn't leave the Fighter in the acid-filled ditch. In fact, I remember that the DCs worked fine when I tried to run Scarlet Heroes.
Note that Worlds Without Numbers cheerfully hands out night vision in various forms to most forms of magic/power user, and not to mundane Warriors and Experts, so it's not without it's little quirks about this sort of thing.
 

Fenris-77

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Note that Worlds Without Numbers cheerfully hands out night vision in various forms to most forms of magic/power user, and not to mundane Warriors and Experts, so it's not without it's little quirks about this sort of thing.
I haven't read far enough in to figure out what 'cheerfully' means here, but I'll probably stamp it out regardless. No night vision!
 

raniE

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There absolutely is a difference. If the system has armor as damage reduction, it distinguishes between hitting and missing, and hitting but having the damage entirely stopped, or hitting and having some damage get through. It's immediately obvious what is going on, you don't need to do any extra work. And even if the GM isn't going out of their way to narrate the combat and just describes the mechanical effects, you instantly have a picture of what is going on, with a lot more detail than you get with D&D.
No, it still doesn't tell you anything more. What does hitting someone in plate armor with a great sword and having some of the damage go through mean? Did you just hit so hard that your sword cut through the armor? Did you do a murder stroke or a pommel strike to get concussive effect? Did you find a gap in the armor? There's simply nothing more there.
 

robertsconley

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There absolutely is a difference. If the system has armor as damage reduction, it distinguishes between hitting and missing, and hitting but having the damage entirely stopped, or hitting and having some damage get through. It's immediately obvious what is going on, you don't need to do any extra work. And even if the GM isn't going out of their way to narrate the combat and just describes the mechanical effects, you instantly have a picture of what is going on, with a lot more detail than you get with D&D.
I had some experience in figuring out how to describe things with AC.

1674695185600.png
 

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Like in my Dungeons the Dragoning home rule version I stuck an appendix on the pdf explicitly talking about how iterative probability worked and why its bad to call for multi-rolls a lot of the time.
The number of games that fail at this is incredible, especially if you count it's close relative - asking the whole party to make a skill check. Unless the task is so easy or hard it's not worth asking for a roll a party of 4-5 characters is almost certainly going to succeed at least once and fail at least once, making perception checks an all but guaranteed pass and sneak checks where all much pass all but a guaranteed fail.
 

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I haven't read far enough in to figure out what 'cheerfully' means here, but I'll probably stamp it out regardless. No night vision!

That is something in common with many D&D based night vision, it is really good which in many cases is just silly.

I like the concept of some races / creatures being able to see better at night, like a reduction to size of the perception penalty in dim light, and possibly trading this benefit for a decrease of vision in bright light (Gollum had big eyes to gather dim light in caves, but he didn't like full sunlight).
Having vision even in complete darkness, but it is only good for gross identification (humanoid sized heat blob), but not detailed info also works for me. This is an interesting use, but basically just ignoring darkness no. It doesn't make much sense and being able to see in the dark is a huge advantage taken much to lightly in many cases.
 

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There is only one action declaration: I use my Glaive-guisarme! I might possibly allow I use my Bec De Corbin! but only if the player is brand new.
From WWN:

Worlds Without Number said:
Halberds and other polearms can be somewhat
awkward in narrow spaces, but remain popular military
weapons in some armies. The statistics given here can
also be used for fauchards, bills, voulges, spetums, bar-
diches, glaives, guisarmes, guisarme-glaives, glaive-guis-
arme-glaives, and similar weapons.
 

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I haven't read far enough in to figure out what 'cheerfully' means here, but I'll probably stamp it out regardless. No night vision!
Well, healers can see life sources regardless of lighting if they take an 'art' that let's them see the state on someone's health. OF course they can't see traps, etc., so this isn't a super-strong see-in-the-dark. However, the martial artists can just see in the dark (okay, it costs effort, so if they're tapped out for the day they can't), and indeed when blindfolded or even when eyeless.

For most magic users the seeing in the dark bit is a bonus effect of some art or another, so stripping it out won't be a huge deal - it'll just weaken one of their choices of art. For martial artists I think it's the whole art, but that makes banning it even easier.
 

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If Hasbro wants to get the most out of VTTs, which typically make a big feature of their dynamic lighting, then they should really get rid of Darkvision in order to make their lighting work more consistently and give players common points of reference*.

But that would make sense - so instead they'll probably give humans darkvision.

*One thing that really stood out for me, when I tried dynamic lighting is how annoying the whole thing becomes when the players can't see what other players can see:
P1 "Quick, kill the wizard first".
P2 "Which wizard?"
P3 "What are you talking about I don't see any wizards?"
 

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Infravision in 1E is actually kind of crap. It only “sees” temperature differentials, so things that are at ambient temperature (like traps and undead) aren’t visible, you can’t use it to read or see stuff like frescoes or paintings, etc. It’s sometimes good for sending one or two characters ahead to scout, and it makes it so running out of torches in the dungeon is just inconvenient and not a virtually guaranteed death sentence, but there’s still reason to carry a light source even if everybody in the party has it (and they probably won’t, at least pre-Unearthed Arcana).
 

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Metagaming currency such as Fate points started with 1980's VG's 007 RPG, as Hero Points, and was perfected in 1984's MSH as Karma Points

They were already called Fate points in 1987's WFRP

Theatrix also predates Wushu by nearly a decade
Top Secret 1st ed had Fame and Fortune points that could be spent to reduce a fatal wound to not.

Regarding encounter balance being a thing from 3.x, the Mentzer Master's Set from 1985 has an optional system for balancing encounters from extreme danger to too easy. This is expanded upon in Dragon #101. It's not a simple system but it's there.
 

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If I point to a book on the shelf, do I say "Grab me the dictionary will you?" or "Grab me a dictionary will you?"
:hehe: Growing up in a multi-lingual household, and I'll include mom's ESL British-English to dad's native American-English, 'the dictionary' always had to be paired with adjectives. Otherwise I'd end up lost & confused; I'd bumble along with stray 'u's invading words, 'z's disappearing, never getting my food order right, utter madness I tell you! And that'd just be "the English" dictionaries... :happy:
 

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I think part of the issue with what Telok Telok was describing is that, true, WotC always was pretty shit at GMing advice, but the main reason I think is that he had a new GM and experienced players. They did what experienced players do…ie, whatever they feel like, and typically not what the GM expects and certainly not what module writers expect.

In the 90’s me and my best friend usually GM’d and one of my players wanted to try out GMing. So he ran a little homemade adventure for just the two of us. We basically avoided a ton of stuff, shot straight through to the objective and got out clean. We weren’t trying to undo his adventure or anything, but were experienced players and he’d been expecting the adventure to go one way, and of course, what we did wasn’t remotely like that. He knew the rules and didn’t flail about, he was just surprised how easily we “beat” the adventure.

After that, I‘ve tried to take it a little easy on new GM’s and rein in some of the “outside the box” stuff until they get their feet under them. At some point, you have to take off the kid gloves, but maybe not the first adventure.

Very true. Veterans out there, be nice to new GMs. We want people to learn the basics, to stand before they walk.

Actually I feel Telok's issue is centered on Adventure writers taking the DC system at face value AND THEN adding munchkin inflation to them. They took a system already displaced by 5 points, then added expected chargen fuckery inflation of another 5 points -- so everything is off by at least ten points. Thus the words no longer relate to the numbers, expectations are busted, and sadness ensues.

It makes for shit learning adventure products, hence my commentary on Adventure League material. And I think though it may have its source in PHB presentation, by veteran player chargen expectations the adventure writers have compounded the failure. I like the Starter Set: Lost Mines of Phandelver, but the other free AL content was a shotgun of inconsistency. So I am not surprised the errors from the beginning snowballed into the disappointment Telok witnessed today.
 

opaopajr

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Question: What Was Gygax Thinking?
Answer: Polearms! Lots of polearms. Polearms for breakfast. Polearms for lunch. Polearms for dinner. Polearms for everyone!
Before Oprah there was Gygax. :shade: :coffee:
 

Burgonet

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Question: What Was Gygax Thinking?
Answer: Polearms! Lots of polearms. Polearms for breakfast. Polearms for lunch. Polearms for dinner. Polearms for everyone!
To be fair, the polearm was the weapon of choice for military units throughout the late Medieval and Renaissance.
A long stick with a sharp bit, a blunt bit? That your mates can learn to use with minimal training? Yes please!
 

Toadmaster

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To be fair, the polearm was the weapon of choice for military units throughout the late Medieval and Renaissance.
A long stick with a sharp bit, a blunt bit? That your mates can learn to use with minimal training? Yes please!

It sounds crazy but long pointy sticks saw some use in both World Wars. Trench pikes were commonly issued in the trenches of WW1, being more useful than a rifle with bayonet for close combat.

This photo gives me a distinct Wizards vibe.

1674721466665.png
 

migo

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No, it still doesn't tell you anything more. What does hitting someone in plate armor with a great sword and having some of the damage go through mean? Did you just hit so hard that your sword cut through the armor? Did you do a murder stroke or a pommel strike to get concussive effect? Did you find a gap in the armor? There's simply nothing more there.
Are you just being argumentative for its own sake, or is this an example of Swedes, like the Dutch, being so good at English that when they get something wrong it's not apparent it's a language issue?

Just because it doesn't give you every detail, doesn't mean it gives no details at all. The details you get from a system with armor as damage reduction is clearly more than you get with a system where armor combines with your ability to dodge and evade blows.
 

opaopajr

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About Nightvision... that's something people often presume is more powerful than it is. Again, bad layout, misinterpretation from text, and inflation from veterans. Full quote just in case, D&D Basic 5e pdf, Chapter 8: Adventuring, page 68, latest 2018. (copypasta has a lot of 'f's are missing, no idea why):

Vision and Light

The most fundamental tasks of adventuring—noticing danger, nding hidden objects, hitting an enemy in com- bat, and targeting a spell, to name just a few—rely heavily on a character’s ability to see. Darkness and other e ects that obscure vision can prove a signi cant hindrance.

A given area might be lightly or heavily obscured. In a lightly obscured area, such as dim light, patchy fog, or moderate foliage, creatures have disadvantage on Wis- dom (Perception) checks that rely on sight.

A heavily obscured area—such as darkness, opaque fog, or dense foliage—blocks vision entirely. A creature ef- fectively su ers from the blinded condition (see appendix A) when trying to see something in that area.

The presence or absence of light in an environment creates three categories of illumination: bright light, dim light, and darkness.

Bright light lets most creatures see normally. Even gloomy days provide bright light, as do torches, lanterns, res, and other sources of illumination within a spe- ci c radius.

Dim light, also called shadows, creates a lightly ob- scured area. An area of dim light is usually a boundary between a source of bright light, such as a torch, and sur- rounding darkness. The soft light of twilight and dawn also counts as dim light. A particularly brilliant full moon might bathe the land in dim light.

Darkness creates a heavily obscured area. Charac- ters face darkness outdoors at night (even most moonlit nights), within the con nes of an unlit dungeon or a sub- terranean vault, or in an area of magical darkness.

Blindsight

A creature with blindsight can perceive its surroundings without relying on sight, within a speci c radius. Crea- tures without eyes, such as oozes, and creatures with echolocation or heightened senses, such as bats and true dragons, have this sense.

Darkvision

Many creatures in the worlds of D&D, especially those that dwell underground, have darkvision. Within a speci- ed range, a creature with darkvision can see in dim light as if it were bright light and in darkness as if it were dim light, so areas of darkness are only lightly obscured as far as that creature is concerned. However, the creature can’t discern color in darkness, only shades of gray.


So beyond their Darksight limit they are Blinded (check Conditions Appendix), AND Dim Light is considered Light Obscurement, so Disadvantage on Wisdom (Perception) checks on sight... Which means it is easier to trick with silhouettes and stuff. As a play aid to GMs, I will repeat that Adv/Disadv is roughly +4/-4, so you could just read every PCs' Passive Perception as a full step down (-5) so as to not roll continuously.

Darkvision is strong, don't get me wrong! But far too often people don't follow through on its limits. Like Infravision from TSR, in play tables often over-estimate its defined power. My FLGS at the time noticed that when those limits were religiously implemented the fanfare about having the whole party walking into the dungeon in utter darkness waned.

(But yes, WotC is a Monte Haul designer, and has to claw back its giveaways. See: MtG Power Nine cards.)
 

raniE

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Are you just being argumentative for its own sake, or is this an example of Swedes, like the Dutch, being so good at English that when they get something wrong it's not apparent it's a language issue?

Just because it doesn't give you every detail, doesn't mean it gives no details at all. The details you get from a system with armor as damage reduction is clearly more than you get with a system where armor combines with your ability to dodge and evade blows.
No it isn't. Neither tells you anything definitive about what happened unless the GM and the players put effort into it. Also, I'm a native English speaker.
 

Brock Savage

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I'm not a big fan of that either, but it's not like that stuff didn't exist in earlier D&D editions. Sure, Goodberry used to be a level 2 spell, so only available from character level 3 (when you're supposed to start venturing outside the dungeon and rations become more important) but both Create Water and Purify Food and Drink are 1st level spells in TSR D&D and that will get you through a lot of/most survival situations. D&D was always high magic. I think most parties in low level 5e would prefer to carry rations and let the Druid cast a different spell instead.
We're not comparing apples to apples just because spells with similar names have existed across editions. Earlier edition spells represented a greater commitment of resources.

A B/X cleric didn't even get spells until level 2; blowing a precious 1st level spell slot on purify food and water (which doesn't create food and only affects 6 quarts of water) was a significant expenditure of resources. Clerics get two 1st level spell slots until level 8 and the glacial pace of levelling in earlier editions meant that 9th level was unattainable outside of long term games.

The 5e version, purify food and drink, affects all food and drink (not just water) in a 5' radius. It is a ritual which means it doesn't burn a spell slot and can be cast as many times as one wishes simply by spending ten minutes casting.

The B/X create water is a 4th level cleric spell. 5e's create or destroy water is a 1st level cleric or druid spell. In addition, the 5e cleric or druid can cast two 1st level spells per day right out of the gate at level one and it typically takes a single session to the next level and cast three.

The B/X create food is a 5th level cleric spell! 5e's create food and water is a 3rd level cleric or paladin spell. 5e's goodberry is a 1st level druid spell that feeds ten people! When people gripe about goodberry trivializing content they have a point; Wizards screwed up with that spell
 
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