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  • Blue's Avatar
    Today, 05:13 AM
    Barbarian's reckless attack, champion's extended crit range, and Great Weapon Mastery's bonus action attack on crit are a timeless trio. It's a classic because it works well and works reliably. Not much more to say on your build. It's unclear, but you may not be able to rage with the Heavy Plating option from Warforged. i suggest talking with your DM. The UA doesn't explicitly say it...
    1 replies | 59 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Today, 02:41 AM
    Wait, I know that one. It had the guy with the thing. Umm, you know, the magic thing with the name where they stuck two words together. It might have been the one with the front cover with the scantily clad woman on it, or was that another one? You know which one I'm talking about, right? That's definitely it. Preaching to the ... oh, darn, what do you preach to again? Pulpit? ...
    3 replies | 105 view(s)
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  • jmucchiello's Avatar
    Today, 12:28 AM
    I haven't known what to do since we started fiddling with the teleportation thing (which, it turns out, may not even be a teleportation thing).
    1807 replies | 41906 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Yesterday, 11:39 PM
    Gingerbread men watch fearfully from their gingerbread houses while Hardboiled Eggs search for clues. But little do they know that the Deviled Eggs are here to stay, and they have a hunger for Ladyfingers...
    21 replies | 524 view(s)
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  • jmucchiello's Avatar
    Yesterday, 10:53 PM
    Kaodi posted one a few pages back. I still have to go look at it.
    423 replies | 9727 view(s)
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  • jmucchiello's Avatar
    Yesterday, 10:51 PM
    When you two post your characters, I'll take down the recruiting request. As I said above, this is a great place to bring in two more players.
    271 replies | 7069 view(s)
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  • jmucchiello's Avatar
    Yesterday, 10:47 PM
    I don't have the Ravnica book. Is there any differences there and the UA-Centaurs PDF? If nothing is seriously different, sure, be a centaur. RG thread contains chargen info. Just read the first 3 posts of the IC where the campaign background is. No need to catchup with the rest of the IC.
    271 replies | 7069 view(s)
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  • jmucchiello's Avatar
    Yesterday, 10:38 PM
    I'll let you know when the long rest happens. TallIan - Make a survival check with advantage and three perception or investigation checks. I forgot all about you bringing the captured kobold with to help you find the camp. Anyone who wants to try to get additional info from him, he will already spill whatever beans he has so no skill checks are needed, just ask him questions. Remember,...
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  • jmucchiello's Avatar
    Yesterday, 06:37 PM
    It is the day of the festival celebrating the longest day of the year. You could rest overnight without a campfire. And for invoking the gods, especially Palientar, god of travel, Surina gets Inspiration. (I always forget to give Inspiration out.) So I guess you two are hoping Perin will make the Survival roll?
    510 replies | 12107 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Yesterday, 06:26 PM
    Glad something I said was of help. And XP for recruiting a new player.
    11 replies | 454 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Yesterday, 06:23 PM
    Not as a campaign, but I did hear about a tournament model back in the AD&D (unsure 1st or 2nd) days where it starts with a whole bunch of big heroes - who get wiped out in the opening narrative. Left is their halfling henchman, who is an NPC, and a bunch of powerful, sentient magic items the halfling loots from their bodies. You guessed it, the players are the items. And back then there...
    35 replies | 716 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:33 PM
    I think the basic statement about limited usage vs. at-will, while having an intuitive appeal, does not work within the framework of the design goals of the game. I think that all characters have at-will options so that they will always be able to contribute, and then they have varying degrees of limited resources that can provide other boosts. Those with less limited resource boosts will...
    154 replies | 3858 view(s)
    3 XP
  • clearstream's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:27 PM
    I believe that an important job (of the many jobs) that rules and DMs do, is validating player actions. If I rolled against a character ability that I invested in, and made it, I feel like I deserve it. If I just declare it happens... then that can come to feel invalid. There are narrative approaches that also work, although so far I find they serve smaller groups - one or two players - due to...
    484 replies | 9021 view(s)
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  • clearstream's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:16 PM
    My gods I know what you mean. I constantly wish to be more a peacemaker, read others posts more carefully, understand their point of view with greater empathy. And then... :rant:
    484 replies | 9021 view(s)
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  • clearstream's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:14 PM
    So as you know I work from a clear separation of player and character. There are a few reasons for this. "...you as a player determining how your character thinks, acts and talks." has been cited (PHB 181) and dwelt on. The first observation I can make is simple, "player" is on one side doing the "determining", and "character" is on the other doing "thinks, acts and talks". A second...
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  • Ralif Redhammer's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:03 PM
    For the first, I’d say just leave the missing PCs as missing. With a large table, you’ve already got so much to deal with, and running people’s absent characters just will add to that load. As for the second point, this helps so much. I do this when I have larger tables, and it means people are less likely to overbear other players, that everyone gets a turn to speak, plan, or role-play. ...
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  • Ralif Redhammer's Avatar
    Yesterday, 04:51 PM
    Hahahah, there truly is a game for every person's tastes.
    35 replies | 716 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Yesterday, 04:13 PM
    And this limit comes more and more into play as the game advances. That Firebolt that does multiple dice of damage is locked to type fire - any 1st level non-fire spell will do more damage against a foe with immunity to fire. The amount of cantrips a character has is an extremely limited resource, disallowing the luxury of choice among a larger spell list, and for some casters the much...
    154 replies | 3858 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Yesterday, 01:21 PM
    This gets sniped from a most unusual place - errata to the DMG. So the Auras don't stack. Which is lousy, since this is a cool pair.
    14 replies | 384 view(s)
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  • jmucchiello's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:21 AM
    New ones. The chargen rules are in the RG thread.
    423 replies | 9727 view(s)
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  • jmucchiello's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:17 AM
    Sure, life happens. Welcome again. The party is 2nd level now but the original chargen rules should still work. Integrating a new PC (two would be better) will be easy soon and it will not require knowing much of the existing back story.
    271 replies | 7069 view(s)
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  • jmucchiello's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:53 AM
    Okay, someone make a Survival check (or if more than one, someone give the other advantage on a Survival check). Then everyone make three Perception checks or Investigation checks, whichever one you prefer. Add any pace of taking turns you like (who's watching at sundown? who's watching at dawn? Etc.) And how long are you planning to watch at a minimum? Are you staying on this side of...
    510 replies | 12107 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Yesterday, 04:37 AM
    Obviously if you commit a crime you are giving the the insane wizards for experimentation. That's where Owlbears came from. Have you ever wanted to be part of something ... bigger?
    18 replies | 327 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Yesterday, 04:35 AM
    I've run 12 at a convention, that was really tough. I really had to focus on keeping everything moving, there were a lot of compromises I made to that which didn't let me deliver as good as an experience as if I had fewer. I've been run as part of 12 at a convention as well but it had two co-DMs. And we would recombine and split the party to take advantage of that. Actually, more than once...
    20 replies | 258 view(s)
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  • clearstream's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 11:35 PM
    For me that isn't a point of differentiation: the players decide what they want their characters to do, and as part of narrating the outcome using the rules, the DM decides if a check should be made. Informally, a player could say "I'd like to make a Persuade check against" which is simply shorthand for describing that they want to persuade someone: the DM still decides if a check should be made....
    484 replies | 9021 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 10:51 PM
    Blue replied to Game set up.
    I don't currently host any games, though I do run. When last I hosted I was running 3.5 which was very grid intensive so we played around a dining room table. Back when I was still running at our house regularly I was away for a three day weekend and my wife pulled a "while you were out". God a bunch fo our friends over, painted the spare room to look like parchment, put up candle sconses,...
    5 replies | 131 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 10:44 PM
    Blue replied to Food during games
    We play weeknights after work, like 7pm to 10:30pm. So it's cheap pizza (luckily value exceeds cost) and beverages of choice (caffeine of various denomination, hard cider, water). Other group orders Italian.
    7 replies | 156 view(s)
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  • jmucchiello's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 08:05 PM
    No problem. We need char sheets people. Players in game 2, if you want to join "game 1" in part 2 of the adventure path, feel free. We probably aren't finding any replacements for game 2 part 1.
    423 replies | 9727 view(s)
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  • Ralif Redhammer's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 05:31 PM
    Nice! How many players have had their characters immortalized by Jeff Easley AND now in cake form? Supposedly the Death Saves “Chapter 2” collection is coming this month. Looking forward to seeing it.
    11 replies | 670 view(s)
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  • clearstream's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 05:21 PM
    Indeed yes! I read through your posts carefully and grasped that (see my reply to @Charlaquin above). It's what I meant earlier about "exogenous rules". So while I can't agree that the RAW states or the game model requires, that it be played that way, I can certainly see that it is possible to play that way. Even that it has some advantages. For me the most straightforward way to understand it...
    484 replies | 9021 view(s)
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  • clearstream's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 05:11 PM
    That seems okay. The groups I play with don't play that way.
    484 replies | 9021 view(s)
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  • Ralif Redhammer's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 05:06 PM
    All PCs are required to play as my homebrewed race, the Potato-Kin…
    35 replies | 716 view(s)
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  • Ralif Redhammer's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 05:05 PM
    Yeah, my feeling on this is that it might be difficult to do it without either creating animosity at the table, or vast swathes of time where only the bard is getting screen time doing Cult of the Dragon things while everyone else sits around. As for Rezmir’s goals and needs, it seems to me that her real concern in Hoard is getting that treasure collected and shipped to the Well of Souls....
    16 replies | 431 view(s)
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  • clearstream's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 05:04 PM
    Looking at the arguments made, it seems like two rules are being added. The first states that for some skills, what is considered is between players, not between characters. The second states that for those skills, a resolution between players commutes to a resolution between their characters. The added rules make it possible to have uncertainty when applying a skill between a player-character...
    484 replies | 9021 view(s)
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  • clearstream's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 04:40 PM
    For me, control can't be the deciding factor here. The DM doesn't control the PC when they call for a climb check or a perception check, any more than they do when they call for an insight check.
    484 replies | 9021 view(s)
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  • clearstream's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 04:05 PM
    Is this possible paraphrasing intended? If the being is a fellow PC, then I would ask the player of the PC being grappled if the grapple has a reasonable chance of reducing their character's speed to 0 or not. To do otherwise would be to make an exception to the rule that the player decides how their character thinks and acts.
    484 replies | 9021 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 03:27 PM
    If we are talking about incarceration at hard labor until the wronged have been repaid damages, blood gold, whatever, then the rate or repayment would control the length of stay, irregardless of lifespan. If we are talking about long term incarceration as punishment to the offender and/or a disincentive to others to commit the crime, then the period needs to be an actual punishment, and be...
    18 replies | 327 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 03:08 PM
    I am focusing on the "roll required" because that's where the inconsistency is, much like a doctor would focus on your arm if that was where you had a cut. No need to xray your leg. It was a PC making the Insight check in both cases. It was PC or NPC who was speaking. If a NPC says something to a PC, and there's uncertainty enough for that PC to make a check, it is inconsistent to say...
    484 replies | 9021 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 02:30 PM
    Another serious entry. I always loved the concept behind the comic series Strike Force Morituri, where the Earth has been successfully invaded and human found a way to create supers BUT the process will kill them within a year. I don't remember if this is part of the story or a twist I thought of, but I'd do it so that character advancement speed is at least partially up to the PCs, but when...
    35 replies | 716 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 02:10 PM
    Here's a serious entry - I'd run this but I don't think I'd find players for it. All of the characters start as accomplished and celebrated heroes well past their prime called upon to save the world one last time. Due to whatever McGuffin, they are the ones who need to do it, perhaps blessed by a goddess for saving the world decades ago which grants them some ability to handle this that...
    35 replies | 716 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 01:22 PM
    Since iserith said that he'd handle the same situation one way if the speaker was an NPC and another if the speaker is a PC, we've already proven there is uncertainty. There wouldn't need to be a check for an NPC if there wasn't.
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 06:38 AM
    When talking about consistency in applying the rules that's for the DM, not the players. You are withholding information that you would have given the character if the speaker was an NPC. By your own words. You're pushing off the answer to others because you don't want to get involved. By your own words. That's not a result, it's a lack of result. If you were in a university taking...
    484 replies | 9021 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 06:20 AM
    That is awesome. I love how kids aren't locked into what we see as normal through experience and just can run with the ideas. As a side note, 5e isn't the type of game where players have narrative control like there, there are others that are. For example in Fate (and it's even lighter weight incarnation, Fate Accelerated), you can spend a Fate point to do a bunch of things, but one is to...
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 06:07 AM
    No, I mean "Insight, because following the rules consistently is strictly superior to using one rule in one case and ignoring it in another case." Player: What do I see? DM: You decided what your character thinks, I don't have to tell you that. Player: WTF? A player who has not been given sufficient information from the DM may still be in the process of determining what there...
    484 replies | 9021 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 05:30 AM
    So a mechanic that works fine for NPCs is of no use for PCs, even when a player is agnostic to the results but just wants to know what they have observed? You before have explained that the reason you won't make the roll between PCs is: We now have a case where what the player determines what the character thinks is uncertain. So this no longer covers it. So, why would you not get...
    484 replies | 9021 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 05:21 AM
    Oooh, this sounds like fun! 1. Primus is a brand new world, mostly still elemental chaos. Currently the civilized areas are an archipelago of islands floating in the sky. As sentients travel to new places they take on characteristics believed by those, but still dynamic and changing until a Master of an area puts their Mark, freezing it's configuration. Do you have what it takes to clear...
    21 replies | 524 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 05:04 AM
    I think that's a very cool system. I think it would be hard to backfit to 5e D&D because of the number of durations and triggers the system has. Spells are the most obvious topic. Think about a spell that does damage when a foe ends it's turn in the area. If the foe gets fewer activations they will take less damage. If the PCs roll more success with cost they get the benefit of the foe...
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 04:55 AM
    Please see the next section below what you quoted: "The second player has not predetermined if their character will believe or disbelieve. The player wishes to find out what their character experiences so that based on that they can make a call. They need the full description of the environment including the results of their passive Insight (PHB, pg 175) in order so that they can determine...
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 04:42 AM
    Really? I though I was giving player B information on what his character observed. Please give me a case where, by your definition, an Insight check can be made where the DM is not "telling the player what their character thinks".
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 04:38 AM
    This feels like you're splitting a hair here. My statement is along the lines of "there are times you need to know the results of a check to describe the environment". And your statement seems to be "I describe the environment outside the checks. Then I determine the results of checks, then narrate the results (i.e. describe the environment)." This really feel like we're saying the...
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 03:58 AM
    You keep mentioning a DM gainsaying or controlling a character, and while I've said that would not happen at my table it keeps coming back up. I'm not sure where it's from, but let me give an example with no DM push for any particular action. Player A: My character lies and tells everyone they treasure chest was empty. Player B: My character is a good judge of people because I built them...
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 03:41 AM
    The characters are about to ride into an ambush. How do you determine if the characters can see the foes in order to properly describe the environment? PHB, pg 175 - Passive checks. PHB, pg 182 - Noticing Threats. The game explicitly says that yes, there are times you need to know the result of a check in order to describe the environment.
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 03:16 AM
    I'm between books. Normally that would mean I'd finished books, but in this particular case it means I've got several books going and am not sure if I want to pick any of them back up or read something else. So before I traveled at the beginning of November I was 3/4 of the way through Sarah J. Maas' Crown of Midnight, 2nd book after Throne of Glass. But it wasn't moving very fast and I had...
    11 replies | 242 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 02:48 AM
    Sorry about that. Without the information you couldn't make sense of it, when you didn't address it at all it felt like you had sidestepped the part of the post that showed a scenario outside what you were talking about. Here's where I think the big difference is. There are times that, as a DM, I see the need to adjudicate the results of a skill roll I have asked for in order for me to...
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 02:38 AM
    Actually, the players actions do little except become the environment. Did you hit with that arrow? Adjust the environment. Did you track the fleeing goblins and follow them? Great, you're now in a different part of the environment. And YES, it is ABSOLUTELY the responsibility of the DM to take the described actions and describe them into the mechanics of the game. "You wish to identify...
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th December, 2018, 12:10 AM
    Yes, that was the OP. In my very first post I put forth a different scenario, trying to find out information from people when separating out what was an important distinction for me. I see that the @ mention you did is no longer under that thread, which I should have noticed. However, you are referencing my posts there, especially about calling it "house rules". So I think we can safely say...
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Monday, 10th December, 2018, 11:54 PM
    A retelling of the Black Plague. Only races are humans and halflings (reskinned as human children). Only classes allowed are fighter and rogue. There are no monsters. Just saves vs. disease.
    35 replies | 716 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Monday, 10th December, 2018, 11:40 PM
    There is an entire chapter in the PHB called "Using Ability Scores". I believe the terminology of "using" a ability check, or colloquially a skill check, is well understood and unassailable as a term to describe invoking them. Thank you, this is a great communication - it shows me why you don't think there is a need for a check. I would like to put forth that there are uncertainties...
    484 replies | 9021 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Monday, 10th December, 2018, 11:12 PM
    Actually, using ability checks and passive ability checks to give information to players is well documented in the rules. Do you need page numbers and citations? The house rule I was referring to is that skills (and other things) operate by different rules when applied PC to PC instead of PC to NPC or NPC to PC. A: I try to lie. B: Do I notice? We have a mechanical supported way to...
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Monday, 10th December, 2018, 11:04 PM
    The DM never gets to tell the player how to run his character. Well, Session 0 might have "no evil characters" as part of the agreed on social contract, but that's not what we're talking about here. The Barbarian is free to act as they want. I think your whole example is the DM attempting to dictate what the character does. Heck, that's against the rules in the very beginning of the PHB,...
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Monday, 10th December, 2018, 10:34 PM
    Completely agree. However, I was attempting to set up a scenario where there was a skill check so those were assumed. Sorry, I didn't quote that part of my original comment. All of this was really just a foundation to the information I was trying to gather, but has generated response after response about it. In some cases it's understood that the question doesn't have a meaning at their...
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Monday, 10th December, 2018, 10:24 PM
    I like your ideas, just exploring some options adjacent to them as well. What about a swapping a Hill Dwarf Knowledge cleric. Hill Dwarf means +2 HPs per level (+2 CON plus Dwarven Toughness), +1 WIS, and if at some point does take a feat for heavy armor no need to worry abut STR for it. And Darkvision. Knowledge cleric makes up the half-elf skill loss though knowledge skills only, plus...
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Monday, 10th December, 2018, 08:51 PM
    *blink* Really? I don't know of a respectful way to say this, but I hope you're trolling me because otherwise I don't understand where your multiple responses to my comments have been coming from since that was the point under discussion since the first. Okay, going back to my original comment at the top of the tree you've been responding to:
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  • jmucchiello's Avatar
    Monday, 10th December, 2018, 07:47 PM
    That's why I've stopped pushing these games forward.
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Monday, 10th December, 2018, 06:29 PM
    Great question, let's give it some numbers. Let's assume the conservative 5 encounters of 4 rounds each. That's 20 actions to cover. Add in an extra spell per encounter - say a reaction like shield or a bonus action. That's 25. Let's assume you cast some spells a day cast outside combat - be it utility, mage armor, foresight, what have you. When you have more slots you're more likely to...
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Monday, 10th December, 2018, 06:12 PM
    And it's also been pointed out and had a whole post explaining in a high level of detail that people focusing on the word "thinks" in order to avoid what is very obvious a question about skill usage are missing the point.
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  • clearstream's Avatar
    Monday, 10th December, 2018, 04:28 PM
    So it seems like where we diverge is that I think of Persuasion as "just another game mechanic". And I don't think of agency as all or nothing. I think it is possible to lose agency over some things, without losing all agency. And I am not concerned that some agency can be lost to being grappled (speed 0 = no agency to move), being in the wrong circumstances (bright light = no agency to hide), or...
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  • clearstream's Avatar
    Monday, 10th December, 2018, 11:57 AM
    I was thinking here of the Degrees of Failure option in the DMG, where a fail by 5 can result in disaster. The example they give is being thrown in a dungeon by a Queen, for a failed Charisma (Persuasion) check. If skills can be applied between characters, then a DM who uses Degrees of Failure could add a drawback. I agree with that, and would further draw attention to cases where for just...
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  • clearstream's Avatar
    Monday, 10th December, 2018, 11:47 AM
    I like your examples, especially the first one that I've quoted. Some other ways to narrate it - Loss of Player Agency? "My character Dross will try to Stealth" "Dross is in the middle of a brightly lit room, so can't take the Hide action at present." (Loss of agency?) "Dross is under a Dominate Person spell right now, so can't try to do that!" (Loss of agency!) "Dross is under the...
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  • clearstream's Avatar
    Monday, 10th December, 2018, 11:01 AM
    There are several modes that RPGs are run in. The above summarises one of them. There are others that are also traditional, where at 2a that call is made by the DM in their role as neutral arbiter, not either player.
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  • clearstream's Avatar
    Monday, 10th December, 2018, 10:54 AM
    So far as I can tell, you're committed to conflating player with character. I'm not. For me, characters have abilities that players don't have, so that in many cases player to player interactions can't decide the outcome of character to character interactions. It's common in debates relating to exogenous rules that one side or other "goes nuclear": speaking to how strongly people feel about...
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Monday, 10th December, 2018, 01:55 AM
    This sounds like it works fine at your table. However, I have never come across anything like this in the rulebooks so unless you can provide a citation I'm going to consider it a house rule that some skills (and spells?) don't work depending on the combonation of who is listening and who is speaking. (Or can NPCs not use skills to determine anything about PCs either, leaving a DM to fiat...
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 11:24 PM
    Whenever a Concentration spell is up, all other spells require a higher level slot to cast with no other benefit. You may have multiple concentration spells (up to your proficiency bonus) - each adds one slot level to other casting as well as needs to be saved separately from damage. Buff and matching debuff. Yes, this does add in a real general debuff to all casters in return for the extra...
    27 replies | 626 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 11:20 PM
    I can only give schnee XP once for this post, so the only other way I can agree how important these questions are is to quote them and talk about them. This definitely increases the power of casters. Are you planning on increasing the martial and monsters, or putting a corresponding debuff on casters? If the debuff is only on when concentrating on more than one, it's not enough because...
    27 replies | 626 view(s)
    0 XP
  • jmucchiello's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 08:40 PM
    I'm opening the game to a new player. Zadolix hasn't logged in since Nov 20.
    271 replies | 7069 view(s)
    0 XP
  • jmucchiello's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 08:38 PM
    Anyone else want to make a perception check?
    510 replies | 12107 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 08:25 PM
    With Druid, were you picturing Moon for HPs, Shepard for summons, or is there even more to the druid in terms of filling multiple roles I'm missing?
    14 replies | 384 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 07:52 PM
    Shield's +4 when I need it will always be better then a bit of damage. Shield is a good example of spells that stay relevant at higher levels. Cantrip damage also stays relevant - via scaling. I'm saying this to point out that you aren't comparing cantrips and 1st level spells, you're comparing cantrips and 1st level damage spells, and even there you're only comparing them at higher...
    154 replies | 3858 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 07:25 PM
    We have very different feels - which is all to the good! For me, the fact that casters never need to "descend to the mundane", be it to light their pipes or to shoot a crossbow because they are out of offensive spells - helps to drive home the high fantasy nature of 5e.
    154 replies | 3858 view(s)
    1 XP
  • clearstream's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 07:20 PM
    Not exactly. When the player states that this is something they have decided it is very unlikely their character will agree to, a DM can give them advantage, and give the face disadvantage. A DM can even stack a modifier for circumstances on top, if that feels justified, such as being convinced to kill his brother. In that case, it could also be made clear a risk of the character becoming...
    484 replies | 9021 view(s)
    0 XP
  • clearstream's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 07:11 PM
    I can see that my point was not clear enough. The example isn't about who would win. It is about characters that have relevant abilities that are different from the abilities of their players. I'm not completely gullible, but as a player I'm more gullible than a Rogue Inquisitive with high Wisdom, Ear for Deceit, and Expertise in Insight is. This points out that player-to-player does not...
    484 replies | 9021 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 06:58 PM
    I personally feel that cantrips are orthogonal to 1st-9th casting. They form a separate known list, not even a wizard can get more in their book. They are something similar to spells, but innate. What they aren't are the pre-5e notion of "0 level spells". If they were 0-level spells, I'd agree with you. Why should a 0th level be better than a 1st? But instead I see them as a separate...
    154 replies | 3858 view(s)
    4 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 06:46 PM
    Sure thing. characters live in the world. Therefore it is my responsibility to give the characters the information they would notice simply existing. If I told one character "You see what look like words in some language engraved on the sealed arch" and another character "you see the sentence 'Speak Friend and Enter' in dwarven runes around the sealed arch", I am having the characters do...
    484 replies | 9021 view(s)
    1 XP
  • clearstream's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 06:37 PM
    One distinct use of Insight, called out in the RAW, is to determine true intentions, such as when "searching out a lie". A good mechanic to apply in my case is a Contest: Rogue's Wisdom (Insight) against Barbarian's Charisma (Deception). A DM might arbitrate as follows - If B's result is higher, then R is deceived into believing that B thinks she's presenting the truth. "You trust her on this...
    484 replies | 9021 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 06:35 PM
    Thanks for pre-judging. If you notice I haven't taken sides anywhere else in this thread. I was attempting to get information about this when it wasn't player agency at risk. I am unaware that there was any requirement that he needed to respond to a question that did not apply to him or his table. Exactly. And therefore I correctly called him out for not adding to the discussion.
    484 replies | 9021 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 04:15 PM
    I'm not sure about that. Many species grow based on available food - but having killed half the life in the universe that means that anything that consumes life (plants, animals, etc.) will find their food supplies similarly shrunk. (Predators also are a big factor, but the ratio of predators to prey has remained the same.) Sentients can decided to breed quickly, and to change their...
    21 replies | 670 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 03:51 PM
    Hmm, the fact that you are the only front-liner and that the campaign will go long are a bit at odds. Just to talk out what this means to me, hopefully you can zero in on what's important to you: As the only (or 1 of 2) front-liner, your concentration spells will have a greater chance to be disrupted. This will make concentration spells like debuffs have a bit less utility, reducing...
    11 replies | 454 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 02:50 PM
    I like leveraging the smaller party size to be able to have a good stealth for everyone. That will definitely help but it's harder to do with a party of 5. And hitting on summons to provide additional meatshields and actions is a great way to buff up a party missing those exact things. That gets around neither of the characters being "tanky". Does the summons keep filling this role all...
    14 replies | 384 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 02:46 PM
    I completely agree with what you say. 1st level is fantasy Vietnam, and with fewer PCs against challenges meant for 4-5 characters it would be brutal. I was avoiding the kill-1st-level-characters by asking for the pair that would be viable at certain levels - 6th, 12th, 16th. 6th is enough that you can have the level 5 power bump and a level of something else (or the next class features,...
    14 replies | 384 view(s)
    0 XP
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About Blue

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Date of Birth
September 7
About Blue
Introduction:
I like heavy RP, shades of gray campaigns, both to run and play in.
About Me:
I was an orphan that was raised by wolves in the sentient forest primeval. Later I found out that my father was a god. I only roll 20s. Fnord. I write award winning arias to be sung in languages I have designed. I DO NOT sparkle in the sunlight. I have climbed K2. Uphills, both ways, in the snow. I don't always drink beer, but when I do, it's --- URK.

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Currently running 13th Age. The younger dragons move with inscrutable purpose, and savage ritual breed a hybrid for unknown reasons. Chains capable of holding the soul of a dragon now find themselves around an urchin, while a sliver of the soul of a dragon incapable of being chained lies in hidden in a young man. The Koru - mountains animated by their Kami - walk the lands, while the Kami twisted by the poisons of the underdark swim to the surface as Living Dungeons. The once dead find new life without regaining it, and the never living find life but not their own. The Orc Lord breeds new orcs with the gifts of elves; the dwarves with their mastery of clockwork and the Victorian/Roman Republic Dragon Empire resist. The High Druid seeks heartwood from the trees holding up the sky - last time a High Druid did a ritual of this magnitude, vampires became slay-able with but a stake of wood. Dark secrets of Ages past surface, but whom will they favor? Who will control them?

Zeppel
My Character:
Currently playing in a homebrew 4e game called Ascendancy of Darkness. Civilization is falling, has mostly fallen - will a misfit band thrown together by magic they don't understand be able to help. I run Smoke, the aging longtooth shifter Runepriest. Run by Dragon magazine author KS.

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My Game Details
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USA
Game Details:
Currently running 13th Age. The younger dragons move with inscrutable purpose, and savage ritual breed a hybrid for unknown reasons. Chains capable of holding the soul of a dragon now find themselves around an urchin, while a sliver of the soul of a dragon incapable of being chained lies in hidden in a young man. The Koru - mountains animated by their Kami - walk the lands, while the Kami twisted by the poisons of the underdark swim to the surface as Living Dungeons. The once dead find new life without regaining it, and the never living find life but not their own. The Orc Lord breeds new orcs with the gifts of elves; the dwarves with their mastery of clockwork and the Victorian/Roman Republic Dragon Empire resist. The High Druid seeks heartwood from the trees holding up the sky - last time a High Druid did a ritual of this magnitude, vampires became slay-able with but a stake of wood. Dark secrets of Ages past surface, but whom will they favor? Who will control them?

Zeppel
My Character:
Currently playing in a homebrew 4e game called Ascendancy of Darkness. Civilization is falling, has mostly fallen - will a misfit band thrown together by magic they don't understand be able to help. I run Smoke, the aging longtooth shifter Runepriest. Run by Dragon magazine author KS.
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Thursday, 13th December, 2018


Wednesday, 12th December, 2018


Tuesday, 11th December, 2018



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Wednesday, 12th December, 2018

  • 01:05 AM - Lanefan mentioned Blue in post CHALLENGE: Campaigns that NOBODY would want to play in
    The setting I've had a hard time selling is one set in a low fantasy equivalent of the United States during the time of the War of 1812 with border skirmishes on the frontier as the might of the empire is crushing from the east. Long rifles and canons, Napoleonic sea combat, westward expansion, river pirates.How can you possibly not be able to sell Napoleonic sea combat? That alone makes this worth playing! :) Blue - that declining-levels idea is brilliant!

Tuesday, 11th December, 2018

  • 08:15 PM - Elfcrusher mentioned Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    It’s about one character trying to convince or deceive another. Some DMs like to resolve that with an Insight check, some like to do it with a Persuasion or deception check, some do a contest of both... And, as I noted previously, it's further complicated because we're entangling two issues: PvP and agency. Honestly I think this whole debate would be more clear if we stuck with a scenario where an NPC was trying to persuade a PC. The most important parts of the debate would still be there, without PvP clouding the issue. Earlier somebody said something about @Blue also using house rules, and he responded that "not allowing PvP is a house rule" or something like that. But I think the person meant how he is using skills in general. (Funny how I can't remember now if I said something or it was iserith or Ovinomancer....)

Monday, 10th December, 2018

  • 11:22 PM - iserith mentioned Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    Blue: In D&D 5e, one does not "use skills" on NPCs or PCs. They perform tasks. The outcomes of those tasks may be uncertain and carry with it a meaningful consequence of failure. If they do, then the DM calls for an ability check to resolve it. If the task does not have an uncertain outcome and/or a meaningful consequence of failure, the DM does not call for an ability check. These are not house rules. Since a player determines how a character thinks and acts, the outcome of a task made to influence how the character thinks is not uncertain. Therefore, there is no ability check. These are also not house rules.

Friday, 2nd November, 2018

  • 07:50 PM - Hawk Diesel mentioned Blue in post Warlock Maledictions
    I see what you are doing here, and I don't know how to feel about it. I think it is certainly an interesting concept, and does get back to the core of the original Warlock class. That class was all about getting at-will, unlimited spell-like abilities. And so now, in a version of D&D where nearly all casters have some kind of resourceless, at-will, spell-like abilities via cantrips, how might we get back to what made the original Warlock great? So I think making them the master of cantrips is certainly an interesting idea. Allowing them to add modifier damage to cantrips or other battlefield control effects is an interesting idea. But I'm not sure if I necessarily like this idea completely either. As Blue has mentioned, it would make Warlock an appealing dip for any caster that wants to improve the power of their cantrips. Additionally, when we look at the original Warlock, the primary ability was the Eldritch Blast. It automatically increased in power as you leveled, and many of the invocations either changed the shape of Eldritch Blast (either chaining blasts, ranged area of effect like fireball, or within a radius centered on caster) or the energy type used by the eldritch blast. Additionally, you could add effects like charm, stun, fear, ect to the blast. So if we are going to help it go back to its roots, I don't think the way is to find ways to expand the Warlock's access to offensive cantrips. Rather, I think it is to lean into Eldritch Blast. 1) Make Eldritch Blast a class ability. It is no longer a cantrip. No other class can get access to it without the appropriate level dip. 2) The number of rays is no longer determined by character level, but by Warlock level (t...

Thursday, 1st November, 2018

  • 04:09 PM - clearstream mentioned Blue in post Banishing Eldritch Blast
    ...ves +Cha to damage per die of cantrip damage. EB is still slightly better, but the other cantrips will give a better chance of big hits (at the cost of whiffing more often). I think if Agonizing Blast applied to each die of damage, the damage cantrips that have useful side effects would be as good as Eldritch Blast. Fire Bolt would remain over-shadowed due to the damage type (about 80 core foes resist or are immune to fire, versus 1 that is immune to force, not to mention that spells like Absorb Elements have no effect on force). EB and invocations have been central to the Warlock, right from its 3.5ed Complete Arcane version where it was a ray (ranged touch) that did d6s. Hence it is right that commentators are concerned about removing it. Having played with Warlocks at the table for about two years now in 5e, EB spam is standing out as offering less fun than could be available with some adjustment. It seems to hedge the Warlocks in to using it (in part due to few spell slots, as Blue noted), and it also takes a pretty tightly optimised melee class to compete with it, forcing non-Warlock characters into a narrower design-space. (Warlocks have moved up in favoured classes, as measured by WotC, and I think that is in some part due to their sitting in a sweet spot in the 5e design space). Remembering at all times that here I'm talking only about the quality of the game mechanics. The thing is, it feels like Eldritch Blast at the table is a bit better than it needs to be to remain viable. The combination of a target per damage die, force damage type, range, and per bolt bonuses, turns out to be really strong. Over time, the average damage from say Fire Bolt compared with Eldritch Blast sans Agonizing Blast is the same, albeit Fire Bolt is spikier (its damage comes in bigger lumps) and is more often resisted. However, the efficiency of being able to switch targets, and of course Agonizing Blast, make Eldritch Blast much killier. I'm concerned that if all damaging c...

Wednesday, 17th October, 2018

  • 02:03 AM - Hawk Diesel mentioned Blue in post Some New Divination Spells
    Thanks for the feedback! Blue - I can see where you're coming from on the Combat Clarity. I based it off of a mix of Bless (add 1d4 to attack rolls) and Bane (subtract 1d4 to saves). The intention for the save disadvantage wasn't intended for debuffs but rather more about direct damage spells (knowing when to cast fireball at the most opportune time and in just the right place to make it as hard as possible to get out of the way). I also was watching Haste closely to keep it on par, without overshadowing it. Sabathius42 - First of all, good catch with the Sword of Damocles! It is intended to end once the reaction has been used, so I will adjust the wording to reflect that. Also I understand your concern with Divination being more about the buffs than the debuffs. I was trying carefully not to make it seem like a curse, which I tend to feel like belongs more in the Necromancy camp. But the way I view it is less about impacting how the enemies avoid the spells, but improving the timing and placement of the spel...

Friday, 28th September, 2018

  • 10:39 PM - DM Dave1 mentioned Blue in post Share examples of return to simplicity and/or return to analog solutions from digital
    Initiative: I have a dry erase board where I (or one of the players) order the PCs and the enemies in a column. Different color pens for PCs and enemies. Works fine and reasonably quickly, especially when I have them roll initiative at the beginning of the session. We display it in a spot where everyone can see. I really like Blue's old school clothespin idea... I might have to pick some up and try that! Minis: We employ both the grid and TotM at our tables. For gridded combats, players typically have minis for their PCs - and I have a few generic ones that can stand in. I use chess pieces for small/medium opponents, Skylanders or blocks for large opponents, and beer/soda cans for huge opponents. Spells: I print out custom spell sheets for NPCs from www.dnd-spells.com and encourage players to do the same. It has been a tremendous timesaver at the table and doesn't require constant look-ups in PHB or XGtE or D&D Beyond. Electronics at the table: While I'm firmly in the pencil and paper and books camp, I've found my phone helpful in a pinch to look up stats when I forgot a book. But I'm finding that players are often distracted by their phones and laptops instead of respectfully paying attention to the rest of us at the table when their PC is not in the spotlight. At session 0 of our next campaign, I ...

Tuesday, 25th September, 2018

  • 06:14 PM - 5ekyu mentioned Blue in post Glamour Bard Analysis Paralysis!
    I agree with Blue As my sorc has progressed, I have plans and options and candidate lists for mc options, feats, spells etc but it really keeps coming down to an "in-character" choice at the time and those are often not following the grand scheme. Definitely, something a full tier away, it's extremely likely the decision points will be very different than they seem now. Real play vs white room - that's called playing.

Sunday, 16th September, 2018

  • 03:35 AM - pukunui mentioned Blue in post Suitable Rewards for Successfully Saving the World?
    Blue: Thanks for the suggestions. As I mentioned in my OP, I am planning on giving one PC some land that is being threatened by giants, which will be the hook to lead them into Against the Giants. I am also planning on giving at least some of them supernatural gifts, either from their gods or the trickster spirits (which aren't really gods). As for rights and titles, yes, I'll give them some of those too. As mentioned, one is a cleric of Eilistraee. The paladin/sorcerer also follows Kelemvor. I am thinking of having the Order of the Gauntlet offer the latter membership in their faction. Some of the others might get offers from the Lords' Alliance and/or the Harpers. I might even offer the rogue membership in the Zhentarim.

Tuesday, 11th September, 2018

  • 09:18 AM - pemerton mentioned Blue in post Do you enjoy playing roleplaying games in which you have no clue about the rules?
    ... between the players at the table. That's their sole and crucial function. Mechanics can take multiple forms (I think this point goes back to Jonathan Tweet in Everway): Drama resolution relies on asserted statements without reference to listed attributes or quantitative elements. Karma resolution relies on referring to listed attributes or quantitative elements without a random element. Fortune resolution relies on utilizing a random device of some kind, usually delimited by quantitative scores of some kind. If playing without knowledge of the mechanics means lots of "drama" resolution - ie when I say what my PC does, then most of the time that just happens in the fiction - then it's fine although potentially a bit unexciting (the situations have to be pretty evocatively set out by the GM so that it's fun to engage with them knowing how that engaging is all I need to do to have things happen). If I'm meant to be learning the fiction, like the magic system described by Blue and jmucchiello, the GM had better provide me with the chance to learn! If playing without knowledge of the mechanics means lots of "fortune" resolution but only the GM knows what is going on - only the GM can call for a check, interpret a check, etc - then it's really a form of GM fiat resolution - the mechanics are imposing pretty minimal constraint under these circumstances - with the players along for the ride. The GM better be a good storyteller! Playing with heavily GM-mediated "karma" resolution makes me think of Amber diceless - I've never played it myself but that is how it looked when I saw others playing it.

Monday, 10th September, 2018

  • 05:30 PM - jmucchiello mentioned Blue in post Do you enjoy playing roleplaying games in which you have no clue about the rules?
    ...for a 1d10 like value. Given the rough granularity of the "system" a d10 was sufficient for determining a result. The magic system was less free form than implied. It had a grammar and vocabulary. Anyone who knew the words and could form a proper sentence could ask the faeries and other beings of power to alter reality. If the faeries liked your pronunciation, (Players did have to speak the spells aloud) the effect would happen. "Osoro gen Gothamr Ra Dal Inf Fir La"might translate (loosely) to "In the name of the great Oroso and lost Gothamr, invoke the element of fire upon (gesture pointing at) my enemies." I don't remember the actual syllables but the players did have "spell books" that listed spells they knew would produce specific results. And they reversed engineered most of the words and enough of the grammar to do ad hoc spells. This would never work at say a convention. The DM must know the players well enough to know how they evaluate risk. I'm glad you enjoyed it, Blue. I enjoyed the walk down memory lane. :)

Saturday, 1st September, 2018

  • 06:58 PM - DMMike mentioned Blue in post Starting Money - Determined by Rules, GM, or Player?
    ...some simple random starting wealth allocation, but gives the players the option of spending their background trait on a variety of options that increase their starting wealth. So, in either case, what is the answer? To clarify: most games have rules for wealth for characters starting out at raw 1st level or equivalent, but not very many have rules for characters coming in at higher level; and of those that do some are less than no help at all (3e D&D, I'm looking right at ya). ::Sigh:: you smart people are sooo neeedy... :) Rules - what's given in the designer's rulebook. Not the GM's. Player - what the player's character concept implies/specifies. GM - wealth by house rule or rule zero. Other - includes combinations of the above. Oh yeah: Starting - entry-level or level 1 characters. "Depends on the game" makes sense, since different games will use money for different reasons, and those reasons might or might not be handled well by the rules. However, Blue, don't confuse the player using the rules/having choices as being Player determined wealth. If the player is using the rules to do so, it's wealth by Rules. If the player is arbitrarily determining starting money, rules be damned, then it's Player money.

Friday, 31st August, 2018

  • 01:47 AM - TheCosmicKid mentioned Blue in post Should there be Subclasses that replace something from the Base Class?
    Part of the answer to the question depends on another question: who are we talking about? As far as published material from WotC is concerned, I think Blue and others have covered the matter. The revised ranger is particularly illuminating (although its status is now in some doubt). As far as homebrewing DMs go, though... I, at least, substitute class features quite a bit. I don't think I ever formalize it as part of a subclass, though, it's just on an ad hoc basis.

Wednesday, 29th August, 2018

  • 08:27 PM - Quickleaf mentioned Blue in post Social skills vs. ... all other mechanics
    Blue One trick I use at my table is using high skill bonuses as an indication of how much “help” the player can receive from other players OOC. I’ve seen this apply to negotiations, wilderness survival, D&D monster lore, engineering, and puzzles. I generally allow more “group think” / “yeah! what (s)he said” the higher the acting PC’s relevant skill is.
  • 07:48 PM - Satyrn mentioned Blue in post Social skills vs. ... all other mechanics
    I sometimes wonder if people really make as big an issue of some of these things in real games as they seem to imply. I find it hard to believe most DMs wouldn't accept "I track the wolves" or similar. In the rare case that intent isn't clear, I just ask for clarification. I think it's more that, in our forum discussions, we use these simple obvious examples to illustrate our points, but because they are simple obvious examples that are readily resolved and understood at the table, it looks to "the other side" that we're extraordinarily picky. The examples get in the way of our point. My point was supposed to be that, as far as it relates to how @iserith doing things, @Blue is mistaking the approach for the goal, and in doing so, is concluding that iserith needs more detail than he does. That is, by suggesting to Blue that if he considers "locating the wolves" is the goal, "tracking them" looks like a viable approach. If "unlocking the chest" is the goal, "picking the lock" probably suffices as the approach. And maybe he'll see that iserith isn't requiring all the extra detail thinks is needed.
  • 07:05 AM - Coroc mentioned Blue in post Halfling Darksun (Athasian) Variant.
    Blue The "Lucky " trait of the standard Halfling allows to reroll each 1 of a d20 also the brave trait allows advantage vs. fear without limit. I do not think that Zardnaar 's ancient wisdom overcompensates the lack of these two traits, it does not look overpowered in any way to me as it is a limited resource. Given that in a DS campaign short rests might not be that frequent its recharge is depending on some outer condition that cannot be affected by the players.

Wednesday, 15th August, 2018

  • 06:05 PM - Satyrn mentioned Blue in post Barbed metal arrows
    Aren't arrowheads already metal? I was gonna say! I was also gonna say that arrows already stick in their target, too. Just ask Boromir! If I was the DM here, I'd be saying I don't want to introduce any special rules that suggest that normal arrows don't stick in their target, but being completely open to Blue achieving his goal, I'd point him to a most excellent idea posted earlier in the thread: The steel-braided lasso. Or net.

Tuesday, 7th August, 2018

  • 09:59 PM - pming mentioned Blue in post Missed session catch-up XP
    Hiya! (TL;DR Not a problem with a PC getting no XP. They make up for it by getting a bit more because of harder challenges to their level). I'm with Blue (his first post on this thread, #3 point) and iserith. If the player misses the game session, then his PC either becomes an "APC" (no, not that, the A stands for Absent...mostly...). A character who is not able to attend, or misses some part of the game (beginning because they had to work late, or the end because they had to do something like pick someone up at the airport, etc), that persons character becomes an APC. While in "APC mode", the character generally is 'ignored' by the world if at all possible. The character hangs at the back and doesn't offer advice, doesn't perform skills, doesn't really do much of anything. If the situation requires the PC's interaction, one of the players makes the decision, with me overriding it if it seems out of character or isn't "necessary"; e.g., they find a chest and it's locked...the APC thief does NOT deal with it because opening the chest is not 'required'; when the player is back, then she can decide if she wants to look for traps and pick t...

Monday, 6th August, 2018

  • 12:57 AM - Unwise mentioned Blue in post How would you RP a Gnome Conquest Paladin?
    A cultured gentleman from a more technologically advanced culture than the norm. It is the gnomes' burden to bring the other lesser peoples under the guiding light of the one true civilisation. Pretty much look at any book or paper from the British imperial era. You can be a world conquering despot without being uncultured or "uncivil". You can even do it with the best of intentions if you are a true believer. Mechanically I would go for platemail and a high strength and flavour it as a normal gnome in powerarmor. It would be interesting to follow Gond, the god of craftsmen and invention. Being from a tyrannical sect of an otherwise good religion us fun. The other appropriate religion would be something like hard-core Confusionism. Like Blue said, a guy obsessed with everything and everybody being in its place. I would play him a bit psychopathic, very OCD and fairly Aspergers. This actually has me tempted to play an Eldritch Knight, flavouring his burning hands as a Boba Fett style flamethrower, shield spell as a deflector shield etc. If the GM was OK with steampunk, but that already seems to be the flavour of Rock Gnomes.

Wednesday, 18th July, 2018

  • 11:34 AM - Ymdar mentioned Blue in post Help with handing out magic items
    Thanks for giving ideas for me. Just the sort of feedback I was looking for. Now I see that compared to the 'typical' campaign, my system was vastly overpowered. However I noticed that Blue 's and Oofta 's tables are somewhat different. Why is this? Is that due to the number of average rerolls on the treasure tables and thus one representing a more average result than the other? I am looking for the typical number of items per campaign.


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Wednesday, 12th December, 2018

  • 05:36 PM - FrogReaver quoted Blue in post Cantrip Auto-Scaling - A 5e Critique
    I think the basic statement about limited usage vs. at-will, while having an intuitive appeal, does not work within the framework of the design goals of the game. I think that all characters have at-will options so that they will always be able to contribute, and then they have varying degrees of limited resources that can provide other boosts. Those with less limited resource boosts will likely have better at-will abilities. I think there's some cognitive dissonance going on because "cantrips are spells" that don't allow us to evaluate that in the larger game. So let's shake this up and compare the idea that at-will should be inferior to limited usage breaking from that and using another class. Hypothesis: A limited use resource must always be more powerful than an unlimited use resource. Example limited use resource: One action used to cast a 1st level direct damage spell with a 1st level slot. Example at-will resource: Fighter using one action to attack with weapons. R...

Tuesday, 11th December, 2018

  • 05:51 PM - Charlaquin quoted Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    I am focusing on the "roll required" because that's where the inconsistency is, much like a doctor would focus on your arm if that was where you had a cut. No need to xray your leg. No, you’re ignoring two thirds of an intricately connected system and coming to an incorrect conclusion about the consistency of its function. If you completely ignore the lungs and their role in the circulatory system, then yes, naturally it’s going to seem inconsistent that blood sometimes enters the heart from the superior and inferior vena cava and leaves through the pulmonary artery but other times it enters through the pulmonary veins and exits through the aorta. That doesn’t mean the heart isn’t working properly, it just means you’re not looking at the whole picture. I demonstrated in an earlier post how the apparent inconsistency disappears if you examine the whole task resolution process instead of assuming that there will be uncertainty and skipping to the step where a check is called for to resolve ...
  • 05:04 PM - clearstream quoted Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    If a NPC says something to a PC, and there's uncertainty enough for that PC to make a check, it is inconsistent to say that if instead the speaker was a PC saying the same thing that no uncertainty would exist. So we've already established that we are in the situation a roll should be made. (Or the roll shouldn't be made for the NPC either, in which case we still have an inconsistency.) Looking at the arguments made, it seems like two rules are being added. The first states that for some skills, what is considered is between players, not between characters. The second states that for those skills, a resolution between players commutes to a resolution between their characters. The added rules make it possible to have uncertainty when applying a skill between a player-character and a non-player character, while having certainty when applying that same skill between a player-character and another player character. Whether a group adds those rules or not seems to me a matter of confidence an...
  • 04:00 PM - Ovinomancer quoted Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    I am focusing on the "roll required" because that's where the inconsistency is, much like a doctor would focus on your arm if that was where you had a cut. No need to xray your leg. It was a PC making the Insight check in both cases. It was PC or NPC who was speaking. If a NPC says something to a PC, and there's uncertainty enough for that PC to make a check, it is inconsistent to say that if instead the speaker was a PC saying the same thing that no uncertainty would exist. So we've already established that we are in the situation a roll should be made. (Or the roll shouldn't be made for the NPC either, in which case we still have an inconsistancy.)Yes, it's clear that you're ignoring the bits inconvient to your argument. However, it's also clear that your confusion is due to you ignoring those parts. So long as you ignore the full argument, there's really no where to go here. Maybe you'll reconsider and think through the whole argument, or maybe you won't. Ironically, it's entire...
  • 03:12 PM - iserith quoted Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    Since iserith said that he'd handle the same situation one way if the speaker was an NPC and another if the speaker is a PC, we've already proven there is uncertainty. There wouldn't need to be a check for an NPC if there wasn't. I will refer you back to the post you're referencing with some additional emphasis: If a player describes the character as trying to determine an NPC's true intentions by observing its body language, speech habits, and changes in mannerisms, then I'll adjudicate and narrate as normal. I would have telegraphed a tell while describing the environment anyway. In almost all cases, if there is an ability check at all, this would be a Wisdom (Insight) check though; passive Insight would only be called upon to resolve a task performed repeatedly and that's not likely to come up much. I was very careful with my language here. "Adjudicate and narrate as normal" means to follow the D&D 5e rules for adjudicating a proposed task which does not necessarily mean th...
  • 02:27 PM - FrogReaver quoted Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    Since @iserith said that he'd handle the same situation one way if the speaker was an NPC and another if the speaker is a PC, we've already proven there is uncertainty. There wouldn't need to be a check for an NPC if there wasn't. He can determine if there is uncertainty for the NPC because he controls the NPC. He cannot do the same for the PC that he does not control the PC.
  • 02:13 PM - Ovinomancer quoted Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    Since iserith said that he'd handle the same situation one way if the speaker was an NPC and another if the speaker is a PC, we've already proven there is uncertainty. There wouldn't need to be a check for an NPC if there wasn't.No. You're not following. iserith can determine if the situation is uncertain fir an NPC because that's in his control. He could also have determined it automatically succeeded or failed. His choice in that example was not axiomatic. If it's a PC, then the DM doesn't have that choice at all, the player does. Again, the step where confusion exists is #3. There are three choices there -- success, no roll; failure, no roll; and uncertain, roll required. You are fixating on the last and ignoring the other two. iserith could also have said no check was needed for the NPC.
  • 01:08 PM - Ovinomancer quoted Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    When talking about consistency in applying the rules that's for the DM, not the players. It's 100% consistent. Again, the play loop is: 1. DM describes environment. 2. Players declare PC actions 3. DM determines if actions are auto success, auto fail, or uncertain. If uncertain, call for checks. Added is the rule that players have the sole power to decide what their PCs think. In all your cases, you get to 3 and decide that the PC's declared action is uncertain. iserith gets there and applies the rule that players get to say what they think and decides there's no uncertainty: it's whatever the players say. Iserith is 100% consistsnt in his adjudication. If I had to point at the confusion, it would be that you've interalized a play concept from eariler editions that mechanics are to be preferentially used to resolve conflicts. 5e has moved away from that (though you can still do it) with how it structures play. Now there's a distinct pass to determine auto success/failure and...
  • 06:57 AM - iserith quoted Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    When talking about consistency in applying the rules that's for the DM, not the players. Consistency in this regard is something players can count on in my games. It's one of my principles. You are withholding information that you would have given the character if the speaker was an NPC. By your own words. You're pushing off the answer to others because you don't want to get involved. By your own words. That's not a result, it's a lack of result. If you were in a university taking a test, they wouldn't give you credit for leaving the box blank. Nor if you wrote in the box "I decline to answer this but I'm sure between the professor and the teaching assistant they can come up with the right answer." Except I'm not leaving the box blank. I'm copying off the person next to me whose answer is always right.
  • 06:29 AM - Charlaquin quoted Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    Player A: My character lies and tells everyone they treasure chest was empty. Player B: My character is a good judge of people because I built them that way. Is my character observing any body language or tells that was a true or false statement? Me: If you want them to be. Player A is taking a hostile action against your character, so you adjudicate the results. If you don’t think the lie has a reasonable chance of fooling your character, then it doesn’t. If you’re not sure, call for a check to resolve it.
  • 06:16 AM - billd91 quoted Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    So a mechanic that works fine for NPCs is of no use for PCs, even when a player is agnostic to the results but just wants to know what they have observed? Using Insight to determine if another PC is exhibiting a tell is essentially benign. I think most people wouldn't see a problem with it. Of course, the PC being deceived still has the authority to determine whether or not their PC believes the other. That's the limitation of social skills on PCs, for the most part. By comparison, I think proper DMing fairness etiquette would pretty much require an NPC to actually fall for the deception based on the outcome of the check or adjudication. That's the constraint the DM lives under, but not the other players at the table.
  • 06:13 AM - iserith quoted Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    No, I mean "Insight, because following the rules consistently is strictly superior to using one rule in one case and ignoring it in another case." Which rules are you referring to? Players don't get to decide they're making a Wisdom (Insight) check or any other kind of ability check. They might succeed or fail outright with no roll. All they get to do is describe a task they want to perform. Player: What do I see? DM: You decided what your character thinks, I don't have to tell you that. Player: WTF? A player who has not been given sufficient information from the DM may still be in the process of determining what there cahracter should think, and is not able to resolve that until the DM finishes giving information. So YES, that case exists. What the character sees can be negotiated by the players involved. This is fair. "I don't want to use the mechanics because I don't want to get involved in that situation." Which brings back to my describing it as a house rul...
  • 05:40 AM - iserith quoted Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    So a mechanic that works fine for NPCs is of no use for PCs, even when a player is agnostic to the results but just wants to know what they have observed? Which mechanic do you mean - "Insight?" Because that sounds awfully close to "using skills" again which is strictly inferior to deciding the result anyway. We now have a case where what the player determines what the character thinks is uncertain. So this no longer covers it. No, there is no such case. The player always determines what the character thinks. It is therefore always certain. So, why would you not get involved in giving what information character B can observe about the statement from character A to player B? The whole scenario is rife with trouble. It's better in my view that the players work this out between them to their mutual satisfaction than try to involve the DM and possibly mechanics to mediate it. Effectively, I'm just giving the player(s) input into how a task is resolved and rubber stamping it.
  • 05:17 AM - iserith quoted Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    Please see the next section below what you quoted: "The second player has not predetermined if their character will believe or disbelieve. The player wishes to find out what their character experiences so that based on that they can make a call. They need the full description of the environment including the results of their passive Insight (PHB, pg 175) in order so that they can determine what their character thinks and does." In other words, the player has built a character, expects to have a chance to tell if someone is lying, NPC or PC, because that's a common and legitimate passive usage of the Insight skill, and is asking for the DM to describe if they noticed something. If a player describes the character as trying to determine an NPC's true intentions by observing its body language, speech habits, and changes in mannerisms, then I'll adjudicate and narrate as normal. I would have telegraphed a tell while describing the environment anyway. In almost all cases, if there i...
  • 04:42 AM - iserith quoted Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    This feels like you're splitting a hair here. My statement is along the lines of "there are times you need to know the results of a check to describe the environment". And your statement seems to be "I describe the environment outside the checks. Then I determine the results of checks, then narrate the results (i.e. describe the environment)." This really feel like we're saying the same thing. You need tio understand the results of the checks at times in order to describe the environment. Even if you break it into a "everyone notices" part and then something else. Narrating the results is distinct from describing the environment and is differentiated in the play loop described in the rules. It seems like you want them to be the same thing to prove something about how you choose to play. You don't have to justify yourself.
  • 04:36 AM - iserith quoted Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    Player A: My character lies and tells everyone they treasure chest was empty. Player B: My character is a good judge of people because I built them that way. Is my character observing any body language or tells that was a true or false statement? "I don't know - is he?" Player B is sitting at the table, so he knows that Player A's character is lying. He or she can just say his or her character believes or disbelieves Player A's character for whatever reason Player B chooses to establish.
  • 04:27 AM - iserith quoted Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    The characters are about to ride into an ambush. How do you determine if the characters can see the foes in order to properly describe the environment? PHB, pg 175 - Passive checks. PHB, pg 182 - Noticing Threats. The game explicitly says that yes, there are times you need to know the result of a check in order to describe the environment. I describe the environment, then assess if there is to be surprise, taking into account and reminding the players of the ongoing tasks they previously established ("staying alert to danger," "navigating," "drawing a map," etc.), then narrate the result of those actions.
  • 04:02 AM - Ovinomancer quoted Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    You keep mentioning a DM gainsaying or controlling a character, and while I've said that would not happen at my table it keeps coming back up. I'm not sure where it's from, but let me give an example with no DM push for any particular action. Player A: My character lies and tells everyone they treasure chest was empty. Player B: My character is a good judge of people because I built them that way. Is my character observing any body language or tells that was a true or false statement? There's no question at the player (not character) level that "the treasure chest is empty" is a lie. The is a question at the character level if the second character observed this or thinks it is true. This is not the DM pushing anything. Purely player motivation, both to deceive in the first place, and to uncover the deception in the second place. The second player has not predetermined if their character will believe or disbelieve. The player wishes to find out what their character expe...
  • 03:32 AM - Ovinomancer quoted Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    Actually, the players actions do little except become the environment. Did you hit with that arrow? Adjust the environment. Did you track the fleeing goblins and follow them? Great, you're now in a different part of the environment. And YES, it is ABSOLUTELY the responsibility of the DM to take the described actions and describe them into the mechanics of the game. "You wish to identify the plant? Okay, please roll your Intelligence (Nature)." Which is a great example of the first part, because based on that I can now describe the environment to a more detailed level for that character by giving them information base on the results of the skill roll. In other words, you have properly identified two crucial things that a DM does, and correctly ascribed them to what I described. In no way does that control a character, it just gives the player the information to make a call what they want to do with their character. I'm at a bit of a loss as to how what the players do is ...
  • 03:09 AM - iserith quoted Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    Sometimes, this information comes from other PCs. Including tasks they are doing that would generate a dex (stealth) or charisma (deception) if you were attempting against an NPC. (Or another PC at my table.) Regardless what the player knows, the player may need these checks to know if their character knows something. This isn't for the DM to control the character, it's for the DM to do their job of describing their environment correctly so the player can then decide what to do. The DM doesn't need to ask for checks to describe the environment.


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