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  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Monday, 12th November, 2018, 10:56 PM
    Give the Wizard the opportunity to use their reaction to step back to allow the Fighter room. That's what reactions are for.
    35 replies | 865 view(s)
    1 XP
  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Monday, 12th November, 2018, 02:27 AM
    Well, that's my weekly quota of getting trolled. I should have looked at the post count first.
    121 replies | 4266 view(s)
    1 XP
  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Monday, 12th November, 2018, 01:36 AM
    The experience table is designed for tier 1 to go very quickly anyway. 1/2 session for level 1 1 session for level 2 2 sessions for level 3 and 4. Then it greatly slows down at 5. Tier 2, levels 5-10, is the sweet spot the game is designed around. After 11 it speeds up greatly again.
    121 replies | 4266 view(s)
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  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Monday, 12th November, 2018, 01:11 AM
    If you're just going to dig your heels in, why have the discussion? Go with your gut and play a different game. You're happy. No one else is injured because you're not playing 5e. Problem solved.
    121 replies | 4266 view(s)
    2 XP
  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Sunday, 11th November, 2018, 11:14 PM
    Why play a high magic campaign if you don't want the effects of high magic? Magic items in 5e are designed to actually be special. They make things easier by design.
    121 replies | 4266 view(s)
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  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Sunday, 11th November, 2018, 06:19 PM
    5e is a new game and plays differently than it reads to people who have played previous editions. Play it first.
    121 replies | 4266 view(s)
    2 XP
  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Sunday, 11th November, 2018, 06:05 PM
    I was annoyed by it at first because of what I was used to in previous editions, but I do see why now. It saves space in page count and keeps the clutter down in spell descriptions. There are just so many casting classes now that it is easier to look at their list and then flip to the spell you want. There is also this: https://donjon.bin.sh/5e/spells/
    48 replies | 1756 view(s)
    1 XP
  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Saturday, 10th November, 2018, 07:02 AM
    Published adventures are balanced for 4 characters. My general advice is that 6 characters are twice as strong as 4. 8? I don't know, they're very strong. At the difficulty needed to challenge them encounters will end up being about which side gets momentum. Death spirals are a thing. One thing to do is to have many creatures attack and have them come in waves. But then it will take an...
    25 replies | 485 view(s)
    1 XP
  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Saturday, 10th November, 2018, 03:44 AM
    You'll be fine then. Having many encounters and a couple short rests per long rest is usually half of where people's 'balance problems' come from. The other half is not having enemies just walk around heavily armoured characters and hit the fragile and ranged ones. Ranged characters are suddenly not very good when they have disadvantage to their attacks. Casters are not great when they need...
    3 replies | 301 view(s)
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  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Friday, 9th November, 2018, 10:30 PM
    That link goes to no one.
    57 replies | 1868 view(s)
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  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Friday, 9th November, 2018, 09:14 PM
    Who's that?
    57 replies | 1868 view(s)
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  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Friday, 9th November, 2018, 06:35 AM
    Just trying to help. Instead of creating an entire new class (and probably new game while you're at it) it is better to just fix the root of the problem. You're just wrong. They are a very powerful caster. Only rivaled by the Sorcerer.
    35 replies | 1241 view(s)
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  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Friday, 9th November, 2018, 05:52 AM
    The game doesn't work if you aren't taking short rests. Fix that.
    35 replies | 1241 view(s)
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  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Thursday, 8th November, 2018, 11:38 PM
    The problem is that people play the Warlock as a bad archer rather than a spellcaster. At 5th level where a Wizard has 4/3/2 (+3 levels of slots) the Warlock has 0/0/6. Total spell levels are 19 vs 18 but higher level spells are much more powerful than lower level ones. So the Warlock is a much more powerful spellcaster than the Wizard but they have less flexibility in their spells. That...
    35 replies | 1241 view(s)
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  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 7th November, 2018, 09:12 PM
    5e is high magic. 3e is ridiculous magic. I consider fantasy stories to be the baseline. The Princess Bride is low magic. The Hobbit is medium magic. D&D is high magic.
    31 replies | 1132 view(s)
    1 XP
  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Friday, 2nd November, 2018, 11:09 PM
    It is like saying extra attack is a bad feature because it forces you to attack to get benefit from it.
    12 replies | 483 view(s)
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  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 30th October, 2018, 06:46 AM
    Absolutely not. The only abilities I can think of that I would allow are Expertise and Reliable Talent.
    36 replies | 858 view(s)
    1 XP
  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 30th October, 2018, 02:00 AM
    The downtime rules are a variant. Treat them as such. They aren't written exhaustively and are designed to make downtime quick and easy to do. The one roll represents a week of work. Other modifiers like Guidance don't cut it either.
    36 replies | 858 view(s)
    1 XP
  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Friday, 26th October, 2018, 09:12 PM
    I don't understand the flanking "makes positioning in combat matter" thing. Positioning is already very important. Characters usually have different AC/defenses. Ranged attacks have disadvantage when an enemy is close. Many abilities affect areas. If my character is low AC and makes ranged attacks then positioning is very important for them. And it is important for the rest of my...
    253 replies | 10310 view(s)
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  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Thursday, 25th October, 2018, 05:29 AM
    He is 1 of 2 lead designers and he has a vision for his game that he is sticking to. You're not just seeing his design in his tweets, his design is the game. The smart thing to do when you don't like a game is to not play it. If you prefer another edition of D&D play that one. I get it, the edition you don't like is the most popular of RPG of all time. I hated 4e so I didn't play it or...
    102 replies | 2464 view(s)
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  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Thursday, 25th October, 2018, 01:53 AM
    really?
    102 replies | 2464 view(s)
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  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 24th October, 2018, 08:11 PM
    JC stated that the intent is for PP to be a floor.
    102 replies | 2464 view(s)
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  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Sunday, 21st October, 2018, 07:58 AM
    It's important to remember that the 4E Monk once had a bonus action Water Whip. The errata was a rule change. But we all know it wasn't meant to be like that so we're fine with it. There are a bunch of other things too, many of which I think they left alone because they decided they were fine. I am betting they didn't mean for Agonizing Blast to affect all of the attacks from Eldritch Blast...
    61 replies | 3756 view(s)
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  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Saturday, 20th October, 2018, 07:22 PM
    I think the thing about forum posters being the experts is what I'm trying to get at. I don't know if that is true. There is a tendency to feel like we know better. But we aren't the main player base. And we tend to play the game differently than most. It's important to check ourselves. It's one thing to say that you don't like an aspect of the game, it is another to say that it is bad or...
    253 replies | 10310 view(s)
    1 XP
  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Saturday, 20th October, 2018, 03:59 AM
    Is it though? Or is it just that the group doesn't like it. A game not being someone's preference doesn't make it a bad game. Just because something doesn't work in practice for you doesn't mean it doesn't work for others. The OP just sounds like they don't like 5e. And that's fine. Maybe you don't either which is also fine. Don't hold your breath for 6e. I think we are at least 10...
    253 replies | 10310 view(s)
    1 XP
  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Friday, 19th October, 2018, 08:47 PM
    That's just trying to abuse the rules. It happens regardless of what the rules are. There are always those who do this sort of thing. The fault isn't the system. Just don't play with people like that. None of the people at my table would think of doing something like that. It has to be a significant thing that comes up during the regular course of play. For example, if the party decides to...
    253 replies | 10310 view(s)
    1 XP
  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Friday, 19th October, 2018, 07:10 PM
    We don't add to them, we replace them. And I've actually found the 1st party adventures to have too many magic items.
    253 replies | 10310 view(s)
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  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Friday, 19th October, 2018, 05:36 PM
    Wow, it sounds like you don't like the things I love most about 5e. I love the implementation of backgrounds. I think they have the perfect mechanical weight to bring a backstory into the game without taking it over. They do go hand in hand with inspiration. Our table houserules inspiration to apply whenever it is relevant to a background trait. So just straight up advantage when a trait is...
    253 replies | 10310 view(s)
    10 XP
  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Friday, 19th October, 2018, 03:40 AM
    Sounds like you want to play Pathfinder. More power to you.
    60 replies | 2327 view(s)
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  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Friday, 19th October, 2018, 01:35 AM
    I think if the party can just stand in doorways to kill monsters as they go then the adventure design needs to be looked at. Why are monsters standing around letting this happen? Why don't they get into their own doorways? Isn't the party the ones who are looking for something? The monsters are in no rush. Why aren't they being attacked from behind or after they enter the room? etc. I...
    60 replies | 2327 view(s)
    2 XP
  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th October, 2018, 08:28 PM
    Fair enough. You're not alone in this mindset. I have a completely different experience. I run the WotC adventures and often find the party struggling to survive. We do have a party of 4. Every additional party member does add a lot of power. I personally don't think the game really works at 6+ PCs. 5 should still be okay though. The #1 thing I've heard people doing is have monsters just...
    60 replies | 2327 view(s)
    1 XP
  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th October, 2018, 06:59 PM
    With such a long history we need to define 'oldschool'. I think it is a return to form with 3e being the outlier. How many encounters did they face before that? And how many after? And of course if the characters have complete control they're going to have an easy time. Wights aren't zombies, why play them like zombies?
    60 replies | 2327 view(s)
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  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th October, 2018, 06:55 PM
    I don't think it quite gets into the bad territory. I think it is a step above in the 'not great' realm. All concentration spells have this drawback. At least this one comes with a lower chance to being hit. It competes well with healing 2d8 hp and it's fun so it's fine.
    138 replies | 5024 view(s)
    0 XP
  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th October, 2018, 12:54 PM
    Looks like the vast majority of your complaints are about Adventurer's League and not the game itself. No game can fix a bad DM. DMs from any game can ignore the rules. Your DM having you do hard ability checks for what should just be automatic success isn't a fault of the game, it' s just the DM ignoring the rules. The exact same thing can and will happen in PF or whatever. As far as: ...
    60 replies | 2327 view(s)
    2 XP
  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th October, 2018, 12:44 PM
    A brown bear has AC 11. Barkskin raises it to 16, so a +5 to AC. That's fine.
    138 replies | 5024 view(s)
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  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 17th October, 2018, 09:36 AM
    Yeah. At some point we are asking the question, 'would it be broken to reduce every attack and ability to the same thing?'. The answer is no, but the better question is whether it is fun.
    39 replies | 1232 view(s)
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  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Wednesday, 17th October, 2018, 08:46 AM
    In my experience Rogues are one the least new player friendly classes. 1. Player expectation is often different than reality. D&D is a party based game and new players often feel like they're going to be able to be away from the party doing their sneaky things which does not happen often. This is doubly true for the Assassin. 2. The Rogue abilities often require clever use of circumstances....
    39 replies | 1232 view(s)
    2 XP
  • ad_hoc's Avatar
    Tuesday, 16th October, 2018, 02:22 PM
    Is everyone else standing around doing nothing during this time? At our table the DM sets the scene then everyone says what they are doing. 1 character can have Guidance per caster who has it and the caster has to be with them as it has a range of touch.
    18 replies | 547 view(s)
    0 XP
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Tuesday, 23rd October, 2018

  • 09:44 PM - 77IM mentioned ad_hoc in post Ideas for Improving Inspiration
    So to bring this back around to the original topic (which was "how to improve Inspiration" and not "why your particular problem with Inspiration isn't valid")... Our table houserules inspiration to apply whenever it is relevant to a background trait. So just straight up advantage when a trait is relevant to what is happening. ad_hoc: How does this work out, in practice? How do you prevent it from being abused? Like, I could imagine someone with the Ideal of "Survival" wanting to get advantage on every single saving throw... I'm asking because I really want to try this system for my next game. My biggest problem with Inspiration is the Traits/Ideals/Bonds/Flaws are very hard to use -- there's too many of them (5 per PC???) and a lot of them are not very well thought-out. Traits in particular are mostly role-playing prompts, and I don't see them motivating consequential actions the way Ideals, Bonds and Flaws might. I'm worried that someone with a Trait of "I always use big words" will do that (which is good) and consistently get advantage on all Charisma (Persuasion) checks (which is over-powered).

Friday, 21st September, 2018

  • 10:17 AM - Sadras mentioned ad_hoc in post Mitigating players spamming Help, Guidance, Bardic Inspiration, and oh I’ll roll too?
    @ad_hoc Appreciate the detailed reply. I'm not sure I agree with everything but then again I don't feel I have thought through it all either and therefore count myself as ill equipped for a rebuttal. Something for me to look into this weekend and see how I feel about it. :) Just as an aside and why I was asking, no one at our table has dared to use their familiar in combat for the obvious reason that they risk losing it.

Tuesday, 18th September, 2018

  • 06:30 PM - Quickleaf mentioned ad_hoc in post Mitigating players spamming Help, Guidance, Bardic Inspiration, and oh I’ll roll too?
    iserith robus ad_hoc A lot of advice about “Players don’t decide when to roll, the DM does.” Yep! My issue is not that I don’t practice that; it is that I am getting worn down constantly policing the players on this issue & constantly finding new ways to explain this specific to a scenario as one or more players eagerly reach for their dice. It’s tiring for me because I love to say “yes” to my players & the policing part is my least favorite part of DMing. “No, you can’t Help/Work Together because you haven’t said anything that would be helpful in this negotiation. Is there something you’d like to speak up and add to support the Bard’s arguement?” “No, Bard player, you can’t roll to beat the druid’s Nature check because you haven’t proposed doing anything substantially different. Besides the Druid is the *best* in your party at Nature lore. You might try a new approach?” “No, Sorcerer player, you can’t make a History check here. Because nothing in your background as a native of the forests near Wa...

Tuesday, 28th August, 2018

  • 04:29 AM - Ashrym mentioned ad_hoc in post Guessing - Most and least played classes
    ad_hoc IIRC the WOTC survey way had rangers at 7th spot. I cannot find that old link but http://dnd.wizards.com/articles/features/dd-survey-results-summary shows: Fighter Cleric Rogue Wizard Paladin Warlock with druid also in last. What I linked earlier is per 100000 and more recent, however. In any case, rangers don't top popularity or end in the bottom.
  • 03:54 AM - Ashrym mentioned ad_hoc in post Guessing - Most and least played classes
    ad_hoc It looks like a good sampling. What is the statistic data for Ranger at 9th?

Friday, 13th July, 2018

  • 02:12 AM - Unwise mentioned ad_hoc in post Multi classing Objections: Rules vs. Fluff?
    cbwjm The reason I came up with that example is that I actually played a Dwarf from a clan that prided itself on never having been in sunlight. They felt that sunlight would weaken both them and their culture, like it must have done to humans. He of course saw the sun for the first time and fell in love with it and the outside world. I chose deep-dwarf over Drow because it would not have the issues I mentioned above. To me that is the trick, something can be a great story yet shift the view of the world. In my Warhammer campaign example, my players all had great back stories (which they never do normally) but the end result was that it was a group that did not fit in the world at all. ad_hoc I can see where you are coming and agree, but don't have that experience myself. Frankly if they engage in RP or backstory at all I am thrilled, we don't have people competing for the spotlight.

Monday, 21st May, 2018

  • 01:40 AM - Ilbranteloth mentioned ad_hoc in post As a player: prefer Homebrew or Published settings?
    I not only prefer published settings, I prefer published adventures only. I would be very cautious about entering a game with homebrew adventures. Even 3rd party adventures can be very bad so I would want a DM who is picky about what they bring to the table. Can I call that out as an ironic answer for somebody with a handle of ad_hoc?

Monday, 12th February, 2018

  • 05:07 AM - Nevvur mentioned ad_hoc in post How long til you modified 5e?
    ...l" some GMs prefer or require before giving a thing serious consideration for inclusion in their own games. Not that anyone needs WotC's approval to modify the game and have fun doing it, and anyway, custom monsters are some of the lowest-impact form of house rules (again, as I define it). Even so, I'd like to avoid derailing the thread with a debate about semantics. However you and others approach the question and select an answer is fine by me. Clarifications in written responses are appreciated. @Jer: I hope my explanation to Satyrn explains the difference between the thread title and poll question - that is, there's no difference as far as I'm concerned. I did state that rulings on nebulous systems ("situations... that aren't explicit in the rules" in your words) should be excluded. If you feel otherwise, that's fine. I'm not going to try to police the thread, so again, people can answer the question/poll as they see fit. Also again, clarifications like yours are appreciated. @ad_hoc: You wrote that it's impossible not to house rule. Adventurer's League players, in theory, should all be operating under the exact same set of rules. A person who has only ever DMd AL would have a "Never" response if they're abiding by AL guidelines. That's not always the case, of course. However, as defined in the OP, rulings are not house rules (see response to Jer). @redrick: You identified an interesting grey area - codification of a ruling. I feel there's a difference between codification of a ruling and mere consistency with a ruling. DM wiggle room, I guess? Not sure where I would place codification if house ruling is a binary yes/no situation. I'll give it some thought, and perhaps other participants in this discussion can weigh in on the point in the meantime. --- As to my own experiences... Started playing D&D back in the 90's. Didn't get much gaming in '99-'14, then returned to D&D as a DM in Jan '14 with 4e. I gave it about two weeks before I started house ruling and ...

Wednesday, 7th February, 2018

  • 11:15 PM - TheCosmicKid mentioned ad_hoc in post modified ability score calculation
    There are two goals. The first goal is to generate PCs with novel ability scores. I would like to have fewer PCs with good scores in all their important abilities but 8s or 10s in all their non-essential abilities. The second goal is to have a party where the PCs are relatively balanced with one another. I want to prevent what I see as the biggest issue with random ability score generation, where some players roll up super PCs and others get very weak PCs. If the PCs mostly end up with high scores, that's okay, I can adjust the encounters accordingly; same thing if the scores are mostly low. I also like the idea of all the players generating their ability scores as a party during session zero. Though, as TheCosmicKid points out in post#6, creating special rules for it causes some unnecessary problems.Okay, if the collective generation isn't a primary goal, then playing cards would be my suggestion as well. To spell it out in a little more detail than @ad_hoc: build a deck of 18 cards and deal them out into six piles of three. Sum each pile to get your six ability scores. You can tune the deck to get the power level you want. [Three 1s, three 2s, three 3s, three 4s, three 5s, and three 6s] will produce results equivalent to an average 3d6-in-order roll. For arrays that look more like the 4d6-drop-lowest method, there's no perfect deck, but I recommend something like [one 0, one 1, two 2s, two 3s, three 4s, four 5s, and five 6s]. Or if you think using cards instead of dice is just plain wrong for D&D, you can also normalize dice-generated ability score arrays pretty easily. First, pick a target total or point-buy value or whatever other measure of power level you like. Second, create an array using any normal dice method. Third, roll 1d6 to randomly select a score in that array and add 1 (if the array is below the target) or subtract 1 (if it's above). Repeat step 3 until you've reached the target level.

Sunday, 17th December, 2017

  • 09:40 PM - Gardens & Goblins mentioned ad_hoc in post Desperately need help, trying to catch up to party.
    You have created a ....monster :eek: I'm guessing the fighter has.... Defense Style for the +1 AC? And for some reason, folks have missed how Heavy Armor doesn't let you add your Dex bonus to AC. With the +1 magical bonus, and if that assumption is correct then yeah, ok AC 25 Thing is, as ad_hoc alludes to, if something as straight-forward as an AC calculation is so... off from the actual core rules then you're playing in La La land. Lordy knows what crazy rule pretzel readings have been taken with regards to the other characters. Do you have a complete break down of the house rules involved & the other table member's character sheets?

Saturday, 16th December, 2017

  • 04:25 PM - Dax Doomslayer mentioned ad_hoc in post Dragonborn Breath Weapon vs. Dragonborn Fear
    ad_hoc: Hmmm - wouldn't it being treated as basically a 'half-feat' by itself indicate that as a feat in and of itself would be weaker. In addition to those things mentioned above, if the target can't see or hear the dragon born, they automatically save. Between that, getting saves when taking damage causing another save wouldn't you feel that this is watered down enough especially when taking the dragon born race 'as a whole' which seems to be a bit of an under performer? I'm just curious as to what you think.

Tuesday, 12th December, 2017

  • 11:23 PM - Dax Doomslayer mentioned ad_hoc in post Dragonborn Breath Weapon vs. Dragonborn Fear
    Hi, Thanks for the replies! Jalelis - Correct. No +1 stat that normally would go along with it if taking at first level. If they were to take the dragon breath feat, then the extra +1 comes into play. ad_hoc: I'm not clear by what you mean by 'would need to give up a stat bonus'. Are you indicating the standard Dragonborn bonus of +2 Str or +1 CHA or do you mean the additional stat bonus that would come normally come with the feat? If the latter, I totally agree. If the former, I'm curious as to why you feel this would be necessary. From all accounts as it is, the Dragonborn seems to be a bit underwhelming compared to a good deal of other races.

Thursday, 7th December, 2017

  • 04:12 PM - Tormyr mentioned ad_hoc in post Super Monk Jumps
    ...specific does trump the general. the general in this case are the two effects. the specific is when they are combined... the specific rule on what happens when effects are combined. it says ADD TOGETHER not multiply together. Also, the 10' of original movement is not a spell effect so it should not get added twice any more than two effects which increase your AC allow you to count your base AC10 twice. If your proposal is that the individual spell language should trump the specific rule about what happens when spell effects combine, then that rule is practically useless. but again, this is mt take based on the rules presented. Thanks for pointing this out (again). Based on the text under Combining Magical Effects, which I had not read in a while, I would agree that since Step of the Wind is essentially a spell-like effect, the monk in our example would have a jump distance of 40 ft (the original distance + the effect of Step of the Wind + the effect of jump). This goes back to ad_hoc 's ruling all the way at the beginning. I know that some people get combative and hold to their positions when discussing the finer points of rules and rulings, but I appreciate the opportunity to discuss these things especially when someone such as you keeps their head about it. Sometimes I think I have a pretty good picture of how the rules work. Other times, like now, I realize that I missed something. Regardless of the outcome of a discussion, I am better prepared for a ruling at the table, have my reason ready, and move on. Cheers.

Wednesday, 6th December, 2017

  • 05:22 AM - Tormyr mentioned ad_hoc in post Super Monk Jumps
    EDIT: Somehow pulled off a double post.
  • 05:21 AM - Tormyr mentioned ad_hoc in post Super Monk Jumps
    I would love some crouching tiger, hidden dragon, in the game. It would appear the 5E precedence with identical effects is take the strongest one and apply it. Actually, that is a really good point. This would easily fall under the section in the PHB at the beginning of the Spells chapter. In this case, 3x would be the total jump distance multiplier but for a different reason than ad_hoc was mentioning.

Sunday, 3rd December, 2017

  • 12:06 AM - 24Fanatic365 mentioned ad_hoc in post Why penalize returning from death?
    My wife and I play AL at the local game shop, and you may be surprised to know, there are still house rules. A DM is running the game, so how could there not be house rules? Like ad_hoc mentioned above, the way 5e was designed leaves little to no chance that ANY group playing it will not have some form of house rule, or a different way of looking at and interpreting the rules that actually ARE there for us to see in black and white in the core rulebooks. I’m ok with slightly modifying how I play the game dependent on the group I’m playing with at the moment. I just want to spend some time having fun, and D&D is a relatively new way my wife and I have recently discovered for us to do that together. As far as I can tell, that’s the main purpose of the game. Fun. Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Sunday, 9th October, 2016

  • 10:26 AM - pemerton mentioned ad_hoc in post After 2 years the 5E PHB remains one of the best selling books on Amazon
    ... more or less racist, more or less homophobic, etc. It's about the conception of the gameworld, and thereby of who is (potentially) part of the game, being projected by WotC. It's about WotC's communication to the potential market of D&D players. I seriously doubt anyone who was remotely interested in RPGs was ever stopped by the lack of such a statementIt depends on what you mean by "seriously interested". If the rulebooks give the impression that the gameworld does not contain a certain sort of person, than a real-world person of that type might not become seriously interested, precisely because s/he assumes that the gameworld, and hence the game, is not something for him/her. I certainly know people who are "seriously interested" in movies or TV shows and will choose not to watch ones that have no people of colour in them, because they're sick of engaging with fictional works that they are not invited to imagine themselves a part of. Which, to me, makes doctorbadwolf's and ad_hoc's reports of similar responses to D&D in relation to sex, gender and sexuality very plausible.

Saturday, 8th October, 2016

  • 09:40 PM - Cognomen's Cassowary mentioned ad_hoc in post What's up with Vicious Mockery?
    @ad_hoc It's not that I necessarily think you're wrong, but you skip over consideration of the attack role and saving throw of fire bolt and vicious mockery respectively. Back of the envelope, it looks to me like you're 10% more likely to hit the hill giant with a spell attack than you are to land vicious mockery. Assuming a +4 Cha/Int mod, that's a 75% chance to hit vs. a 65% chance to mock viciously. The attack also has the chance to crit. Thus, average damage when casting fire bolt against the hill giant is 11*0.7+2*11*0.05=8.8. The average damage of vicious mockery is 5*0.65=3.25. When the giant attacks, its first attack has a 65% chance to have disadvantage. 18*(0.3025*0.65+0.55*0.35)=~7.00 damage. You've reduced its damage per round from 19.8 to 16.9, a loss of 14.6%. Relative to casting fire bolt, the player has reduced his or her damage by 63% to reduce the giant's by 14.6%. I've only just roughed this out in the last few minutes, and it's absent of context, and it's only one exampl...

Tuesday, 4th October, 2016

  • 09:31 PM - robus mentioned ad_hoc in post Balancing Investigation checks and player descriptions
    That's a really good example ad_hoc, the PCs get distracted by the shiny loot and don't look any further. The question then has to be why is the loot there - is it to accomplish precisely this effect? The robber thinks they hit the jackpot and won't look further. So without some hint to the PCs that there's more to find they're not going to look. So this seems like something the DM has to illuminate with some narration. For example the lid can seem surprisingly heavy (certainly something they would sense without needing investigation). Or perhaps the lid makes an odd sound as it's lifting like something is sliding around inside. Basically you've got to throw the PCs a bone so they know to investigate further.
  • 12:22 AM - pemerton mentioned ad_hoc in post After 2 years the 5E PHB remains one of the best selling books on Amazon
    ...e.Upthread I distinguished between what the rules of the game permitted or forbade - and in this respect they had very little to say about sex, gender or sexuality, other than the AD&D 1st ed STR limits for women - and the language of, and fiction presented in, the books, which is a signal from the publisher to (what it takes to be) its audience. Just to give one example: despite the fact that the AD&D MM describes dwarves as being "typically deep tan to light brown of skin" and gnomes as "wood brown, [with] a few rang[ing] to gray brown, of skin", I think nearly every depiction of a dwarf or a gnome in an AD&D book, AD&D-era Dragon magazine, etc, shows them as having basically northern European skin tones. Those pictures are not any sort of rule that forbids having brown-skinned dwarves and gnomes. But they send a signal about who is the expected audience. Likewise the move, in 2nd ed AD&D rulebooks, from Gygax's "he or she" to an exclusive use of the masculine pronoun. When ad_hoc talks about inclusion, I take the point to be one about changing those signals. That's what I mean when I talk about inclusion. You've obviously been lucky enough to remain completely ignorant of the Social Justice culture that has grown on the internet. May you remain blissfully ignorant of that pack of jackals.I don't want to venture into territory that breaks board rules, so I'll confine myself to this: from your point of view I suspect I'm more of a jackal (though not one with a twitter account) than an ignoramus.


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Thursday, 15th November, 2018

  • 08:51 PM - eamon quoted ad_hoc in post Brand new DM to 5E and many concerns...
    A major part of the issue for me is that I'm playing a high magic campaign but even with houserules to avoid item stacking and similar bonuses on monsters+NPC it's clear that even a very few +1s can significantly impact bounded accuracy. But even using DMG tables +1/+2 shields aren't unheard of, and that makes a *huge* difference to likely already high-AC character. Why play a high magic campaign if you don't want the effects of high magic? Magic items in 5e are designed to actually be special. They make things easier by design. This campaign appreciates the flavor of the high-magic, but not necessarily the balance. Also, note that the magic items in the DMG are at least sort of balanced if you hand them out with the frequency they're in the DMG - you're simply very, very unlikely to be able to stack multiple AC bonuses because you won't find that many. So it doesn't matter that there aren't any stacking rules - they wouldn't have an impact anyhow! But if you have a many more i...

Tuesday, 13th November, 2018

  • 05:56 AM - CrimsonCarcharodon quoted ad_hoc in post A gelatinous Cube and a 10-feet corridor ...
    I would rule that there is no problem for the wizard and fighter to share the space for the time until one of them has a new turn. They are sharing a space at the end of someone else's turn which is fine. Give the Wizard the opportunity to use their reaction to step back to allow the Fighter room. That's what reactions are for. Honestly, either one of these would be the direction I went. If you want a penalty for being in the same space, disadvantage on attacks until one of the two moves, and whichever one of them goes first must move or otherwise be out of that space by the end of their turn.

Monday, 12th November, 2018

  • 03:24 AM - guachi quoted ad_hoc in post Brand new DM to 5E and many concerns...
    The experience table is designed for tier 1 to go very quickly anyway. 1/2 session for level 1 1 session for level 2 2 sessions for level 3 and 4. Then it greatly slows down at 5. Tier 2, levels 5-10, is the sweet spot the game is designed around. After 11 it speeds up greatly again. Levels 1-4 in my last game I DMed took exactly 2x as long as your list for levels 1-3. Each session was about four hours. Level 4 took six sessions. Personally, I thought it was a good pace to the game.
  • 01:43 AM - James Grover quoted ad_hoc in post Brand new DM to 5E and many concerns...
    The experience table is designed for tier 1 to go very quickly anyway. 1/2 session for level 1 1 session for level 2 2 sessions for level 3 and 4. ... LOL, if it is designed to advance so quickly, why even bother with the lower levels? Every character might as well begin at 3rd or 4th level and call it a day. Oh, and in your simulation, I am guessing the wizard hit just as often as the fighter, right? ;-)

Saturday, 10th November, 2018

  • 01:18 PM - criticalfumble quoted ad_hoc in post Scaling for a large group
    Published adventures are balanced for 4 characters. My general advice is that 6 characters are twice as strong as 4. 8? I don't know, they're very strong. At the difficulty needed to challenge them encounters will end up being about which side gets momentum. Death spirals are a thing. One thing to do is to have many creatures attack and have them come in waves. But then it will take an entire session just for combat. Personally I don't think the game works beyond 5 players so good luck.I hear you on 8 being powerful and maybe not really possible. Monsters that will challenge them have a decent chance of wiping them out. I guess that'll be old school if it happens! Maybe I'll make it less about combat and layer in some puzzles or a developing mystery.

Friday, 9th November, 2018

  • 10:21 PM - S'mon quoted ad_hoc in post How do you stat out rulers such as kings and queens in your games?
    Who's that? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arya_Stark
  • 06:46 AM - Hawk Diesel quoted ad_hoc in post Revamping the Warlock
    Just trying to help. Instead of creating an entire new class (and probably new game while you're at it) it is better to just fix the root of the problem. Part of the fun I get from this game is tweaking it and redesigning it. Yea, the adjustments I've made to my game probably makes it fairly different from what you play. And in fact, I think redesigning this class whole hog to better reflect my vision for the warlock would be fun. I also think others might value what I produce and might like to participate in the process. So what you see as the root of the problem is clearly different from what I see. That's fine. But please don't assume that your vision of the problem is the way to understand or approach it. You're just wrong. They are a very powerful caster. Only rivaled by the Sorcerer. No, I'm not wrong. I just see the warlock differently. I didn't play 4e, but I played a lot of 3.x. And so I am used to the Warlock not having spells to cast. I don't think it should be a...
  • 06:20 AM - Hawk Diesel quoted ad_hoc in post Revamping the Warlock
    The game doesn't work if you aren't taking short rests. Fix that. 1) My experience included other players using classes that primarily rely on short rests. Even compared to them, I felt mostly useless. 2) In redesigning the warlock, it is not to increase its power, but rather to give it an identity that better differentiates it from spellcasters like the wizard and sorcerer. I personally don't feel like the warlock should be treated like a spellcaster. 3) If you disagree, that's fine. But if you don't think the warlock would benefit from some tweaking or redesign, why would you want to participate in this discussion?

Sunday, 4th November, 2018

  • 12:07 AM - Parmandur quoted ad_hoc in post WotC's Nathan Stewart Teases New D&D Setting Book in 2019
    I think I may have misread this announcement. I thought they were talking again that it wasn't Spelljammer and that they released that graphic. The graphic is from Morrus, but on Spoilers & Swag when he teased next year's hardcover setting book he specified that it is not a Spelljammer book.

Saturday, 3rd November, 2018

  • 09:13 PM - Parmandur quoted ad_hoc in post WotC's Nathan Stewart Teases New D&D Setting Book in 2019
    The Spelljammer logo showed up in a sketch that was teased a few months ago right? This must have something to do with Spelljammer. They aren't going to single out one setting to say they aren't doing it. That was Stewart trolling folks. They have singled out one setting to say they aren't doing it, he didn't split hairs on the question.
  • 07:28 AM - ZenBear quoted ad_hoc in post Evocation Potent Cantrip
    It is like saying extra attack is a bad feature because it forces you to attack to get benefit from it. It's more like if Extra Attack only worked with maces.

Thursday, 1st November, 2018

  • 11:46 PM - Parmandur quoted ad_hoc in post WotC President Chris Cocks Talks Magic and D&D
    Yeah you're probably right about that. I was thinking about adding in that I was being generous for the sake of argument. Do you think 1-3%? Regardless, what I'm trying to get at is that all this talk of 'mismanagement of AL hurting D&D' is not true. AL could crash and D&D would still be growing at an astounding rate. If I had to guess, less than 1%. I think you are basically right.
  • 07:19 PM - Parmandur quoted ad_hoc in post WotC President Chris Cocks Talks Magic and D&D
    Yeah, it's hard to talk about without numbers. We know about conventions. Gen Con is 60 000. Most of those aren't playing D&D there. The active 5e player count in NA is 12-15 million. If I had to make a guess it would be that AL includes 3-5% of the 5e player base. But then, I don't have the numbers. I doubt the percentage is anywhere near that high.

Tuesday, 30th October, 2018


Thursday, 25th October, 2018

  • 01:33 PM - jasper quoted ad_hoc in post Passive Perception better than Active Perception?
    JC stated that the intent is for PP to be a floor. gee if only some author, designer, writer, editor or person in charge of creating 5e wrote that down in put in the Player Handbook under perception before the PHB was sent to the printers. Ok. Due to JC have changed how I do PP. It is on for what maybe able to damage you. Or if I need to speed up the encounter.
  • 11:53 AM - Shiroiken quoted ad_hoc in post Passive Perception better than Active Perception?
    He is 1 of 2 lead designers and he has a vision for his game that he is sticking to. You're not just seeing his design in his tweets, his design is the game. The smart thing to do when you don't like a game is to not play it. If you prefer another edition of D&D play that one. I get it, the edition you don't like is the most popular of RPG of all time. I hated 4e so I didn't play it or engage with it. It was unfortunate for me that there was no new D&D for me. If it was wildly popular and poised to last for 20 years I would probably be more disappointed. I wouldn't think of the designers as idiots though. Or feel that I was owed a different game. Or bemoan people who do like it. Move on, don't hate people for liking something you don't.I think 5E is by far the greatest edition of D&D. The basic framework is fantastic, and it easily allows for customization (which was a heavy emphasis during the playtest). The fact that I can ignore the "rulings" from the lead designer without havi...
  • 04:53 AM - Shiroiken quoted ad_hoc in post Passive Perception better than Active Perception?
    really? Yup. IMO he's the reason for "rulings not rules." He is (supposedly) trying to appeal to the largest possible group of players. I'm trying to make the best possible game for my group. These are competing goals, especially considering that his DM style seems almost diametrically opposed to my own. Almost every single one of his "rulings" from Twitter I've disagreed with and ignore in my game.* He's probably not an idiot, but as far as D&D is concerned, I consider him so. * We actually agreed on the shield mastery ruling, so I'm not surprised he changed his mind.

Tuesday, 23rd October, 2018

  • 09:44 PM - 77IM quoted ad_hoc in post Ideas for Improving Inspiration
    So to bring this back around to the original topic (which was "how to improve Inspiration" and not "why your particular problem with Inspiration isn't valid")... Our table houserules inspiration to apply whenever it is relevant to a background trait. So just straight up advantage when a trait is relevant to what is happening. ad_hoc: How does this work out, in practice? How do you prevent it from being abused? Like, I could imagine someone with the Ideal of "Survival" wanting to get advantage on every single saving throw... I'm asking because I really want to try this system for my next game. My biggest problem with Inspiration is the Traits/Ideals/Bonds/Flaws are very hard to use -- there's too many of them (5 per PC???) and a lot of them are not very well thought-out. Traits in particular are mostly role-playing prompts, and I don't see them motivating consequential actions the way Ideals, Bonds and Flaws might. I'm worried that someone with a Trait of "I always use big words" will do that (which is good) and consistently get advantage on all Charisma (Persuasion) checks (which is over-powered).

Saturday, 20th October, 2018

  • 04:23 AM - 77IM quoted ad_hoc in post 5E's "Missed Opportunities?"
    Is it though? Or is it just that the group doesn't like it. A game not being someone's preference doesn't make it a bad game. Just because something doesn't work in practice for you doesn't mean it doesn't work for others. The OP just sounds like they don't like 5e. And that's fine. Maybe you don't either which is also fine. Don't hold your breath for 6e. I think we are at least 10 years out, probably more. Also, here is a good DM tip for you: Let the players keep track of their characters. It takes a lot less work that way. Let them say when a trait applies or anything else. I write down their AC and PP and that's it. It's definitely possible that a rule can work well for some groups and not others, or even for some individuals and not others. BUT I've played enough other role-playing games to have experienced rules SIMILAR to Inspiration, but which work much better, for most people. For example, I'm terrible at arithmetic, so to me, Advantage/Disadvantage is an amazing, wo...

Friday, 19th October, 2018

  • 07:26 PM - billd91 quoted ad_hoc in post 5E's "Missed Opportunities?"
    We don't add to them, we replace them. And I've actually found the 1st party adventures to have too many magic items. I'm doing the same with my Age of Worms adaptation... except for a few specific, plot-related items.


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