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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Today, 02:32 AM
    3.0 book and 1E "Grey Box" are the best main books.
    12 replies | 200 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Monday, 10th December, 2018, 06:01 PM
    These are not all time numbers, but rather at the moment sales. Maybe the historical society even out more?
    43 replies | 1475 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Monday, 10th December, 2018, 06:36 AM
    What's so crazy is that they had no idea: WotC obviously has access to a large amount of miniatures, and convention players do too, so it wasn't necessarily so clear that most people don't play games with them, for instance.
    43 replies | 1475 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 10:53 PM
    More recently Mearls has made similar statements on Happy Fun Hour: we'll see Dark Sun sooner rather than later...
    50 replies | 5588 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 06:46 PM
    Honestly, the acronyms became ridiculous in my book with Tales from the Yawning Portal...
    43 replies | 1475 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 05:06 PM
    Basically the previous 2.5 Editions were designed to be the game the designers wanted to play. Which is not unreasonable really, but the game designers who got to play every day apparently had increasingly esoteric interests.
    43 replies | 1475 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 05:34 AM
    The issue is the current Forgotten Realms are in a state of quantum uncertainty, simeltaneously Grey Box, 3E and post-Spellplague depending on which books a DM wants to use. WotC isn't going to define it further.
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Sunday, 9th December, 2018, 12:00 AM
    I'm really impressed that Dragon Heist is holding it's own with Art & Arcana, actually.
    43 replies | 1475 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Saturday, 8th December, 2018, 11:04 PM
    They seem to have wanted the RQ to be available in any setting, because of Critical Role's use of her. There are all these gods i nthe PHB, but Hades and Aphophis are not running around Greyhawk or Dragonlance...but the Shadowfell connects to them. Heck, the schtick they gave the RQ in MToF is "what the RQ did with Vox Machina" even.
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Saturday, 8th December, 2018, 07:19 PM
    He is pitching it as his heavily homebrewed variation, though. He's pretty upfront about that, mentions it frequently.
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Saturday, 8th December, 2018, 06:42 PM
    Technically, there hasn't been a Forgotten Realms take on the Raven Queen: MToF is not a FR book at all, but generic D&D with more Greyhawk and about as much Dragonlance or Spelljammer as FR. But the Dawn War version of her, per the DMG, is still a goddess.
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Saturday, 8th December, 2018, 05:53 PM
    Because in the Nentir Vale she is THE god of Death, who had killed the previous god of Death in the Nentir Vale setting, Kelemvor. This is something Mearls called out as specifically awkward for FR compatibility, as Kelemvor is the existing god of Death who is still active in the game. The idea with the change, making the Raven Queen a sort of Goth Fairy Queen of the Shadowfell means she can...
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Saturday, 8th December, 2018, 04:12 PM
    Pretty sure it is a coincidence. The Raven Queen being central in Critical Role is probably played a big role in wanting her in a core book release, and a desire to make her compatible with other settings necessitated the changes: MToF Raven Queen plays nicely with GreyHawk, Forgotten Realms, etc. Mearls said as much about the changes in the MToF lead-up.
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Saturday, 8th December, 2018, 03:10 PM
    The numbers are good: the catagories are sometimes goofy, possibly crowd-sourced. Doesn't mean the sales aren't good, however.
    43 replies | 1475 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Saturday, 8th December, 2018, 08:34 AM
    Extremely facetious, I can assure you. There is no "become" about it, "D&D" means RPGing to people and pretty much always has. Powered by the Apocalypse, as far as even experienced and knowledgeable players, is basically "D&D with less math." Network externalities might play a role. A bigger factor in this continued success is that WotC spent years studying how people play RPGs, what they...
    43 replies | 1475 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Saturday, 8th December, 2018, 06:50 AM
    But how does this fit into the narrative about how 5E is the worst, the books are mediocre, and nobody likes the game...? Inquiring minds want to know!
    43 replies | 1475 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Friday, 7th December, 2018, 10:22 PM
    Nope, the steed is worth 3d10, the Beast in the Ranger subclass is worth a lot more than that. Mearls in the stream talked about doing the math with a spreadsheet during his Thanksgiving vacation (because he is a workaloic, apparently, but I guess that's fun if your job and hobby align), and found that a 1/4 CR Beast with scaling HP, saves, etc. and their own action is worth the entire...
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Friday, 7th December, 2018, 09:59 PM
    The issue is, that the Beastmaster Ranger already pours all the mathematical subclass value into the Beast as is. In order to get a more powerful Beast, something somewhere has to give in the main Class economy, such as spell slots or combat prowess.
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Friday, 7th December, 2018, 09:24 PM
    It would be easier to see the comparability with the Mount, but that would end up with a less potent and even more disposable companion than the Beastmaster currently gets, albeit with their own turn and more easily retrievable. As it is, the Beastmaster already gets something significantly better than the Mount, but not as satisfactory for certain playstyles that the idea of a "beast master"...
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Friday, 7th December, 2018, 07:45 PM
    I think the 5E Forgotten Realms as set up are fairly localized: the neighborhood Zhentarim ringleader is more important than somebody out by the Moonsea for any given location. The Order of the Gauntlet has it's own country, but that hasn't been heavily detailed (yet...?).
    3 replies | 269 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Friday, 7th December, 2018, 06:38 PM
    It's not hand-wringing, it's math. The wolf has a much better attack than a warhorse, and the HP is not a small bonus: that's the core of the game, damage given and taken. It was an ill-conceived subclass, I think, flavor wise: something weaker like the mount spell, or beefier like the emerging new summon rules, is far better. The beastmaster works fine, but doesn't do what people want it to...
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Friday, 7th December, 2018, 05:02 PM
    Mearls gave a run-down of where all the relevant setting information could be found o nthe DMsGuil on the latest Happy Fun Hour.
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Friday, 7th December, 2018, 04:54 AM
    Sure, they are absolutely comparable in mathematical terms: the Ranger Beast is better than the Paladin Mount in every way, except that it can come back. But the Ranger pet is replaceable, and probably should be retrievable on an individual level: easy enough for a DM to supply, and the mega-Beastie seems to have that built-in.
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Friday, 7th December, 2018, 12:13 AM
    To be fair, it is literally the thread topic.
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 6th December, 2018, 11:42 PM
    This isn't the "5E Version" this is Mearl's homebrew interpretation.
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 6th December, 2018, 11:20 PM
    Right, because the mount only contributes a single level 2 spells worth of mathematical elements (HP and damage: in this case, 3d10) across ~20 rounds of combat spread across 6-8 encounters (an adventuring day). The PHB Ranger Beast does far more already, and what Mearls is proposing goes waaaaaaaaaay out past the Paladin Mount, by orders of magnitude.
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th December, 2018, 09:49 PM
    Until it gets hit for 20 damage. The HP never scales, it stays at the Level 2 Spell Slot amount at all levels. Folks aren't satisfied with the Ranger beast scaling, but it does scale.
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th December, 2018, 09:36 PM
    "Add your proficiency bonus to the beast's AC, attack rolls, and damage rolls, as well as to any saving throws and skills it is proficient in. Its hit point maximum equals its normal maximum or four times your ranger level, whichever is higher." That's with no expenditure of spell slots, which if I were a Paladin I would save for Smite anyways. The Paladin's mount has ~19 HP, and no bonuses...
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th December, 2018, 09:12 PM
    So, as a 2nd level spell effect, Find Steed is worth 3d10 of damage given/taken. Given the HP of a Warhorse, and the damage they are capable of in a few rounds, that seems about right for a second level spell slot. Really, they should have made Hunter's Mark a Class feature, and made Find Companion a Druid/Ranger Spell, not a subclass.
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th December, 2018, 05:25 PM
    First things first, this book is laid out gorgeously. Every page has something visually interesting to offer. The setting is something very new for D&D, a steampunk, high magic, near-modern, gonzo Ecumenopolitan smorgasbord of kooky action and conflict. The setting is very lightly detailed, with lots of blank spaces: an old school Points of Light campaign improving setting details would work...
    12 replies | 1647 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Sunday, 2nd December, 2018, 07:10 PM
    Half-Orcs are specifically not limited to half-human (Dwarves get mentioned in the MM or the PHB, I forget which), and the blood runs strong so a given Half-Orc can be generations removed from an actual Orc ancestor. Canonically, in the Forgotten Realms at least, half-Dwarves are simply Dwarves, and can have Gnomish, Halfling or Human ancestry.
    202 replies | 6924 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Sunday, 2nd December, 2018, 05:08 PM
    MNblockhead specified Adventures, not other kinds of products. I don't see that a Ravnica box set would have had different contents, but would have cost more?
    32 replies | 1304 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Sunday, 2nd December, 2018, 06:41 AM
    No doubt; nothing against it, just seems like good sense for them to get everyone's jam out there. Putting out a quality stream shown first might be better for the setting than a book, in terms of getting new people on board.
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Sunday, 2nd December, 2018, 03:56 AM
    WirC President said in a recent interview that there are something like seven thousand groups actively livestreaming now. WotC is supporting dozens directly on their own channel. Seems in their best interest to get all this IP out there.
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Saturday, 1st December, 2018, 11:28 PM
    B&G was going to have less premium boxes; those seem to have disappeared? Maybe there isn't a major, viable market for more-than the Starter Set but less-than the B&G? WotC has tried before, but none of those products seemed to last.
    32 replies | 1304 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Saturday, 1st December, 2018, 08:36 PM
    Issue there is, the adventure books already give most groups everything they need: text, maps, and handouts. Miniatures or physical representation of any kind are not a universal feature of play.
    32 replies | 1304 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Saturday, 1st December, 2018, 06:02 AM
    The base Starter Set is also a box set, and has sold well for years. Biggest downside for a EotC game product, though, is browsability: hard to flip through a boxed adventure set in the store.
    32 replies | 1304 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Friday, 30th November, 2018, 12:39 AM
    3.0 was priced as a loss leader. WotC donesn't do that anymore.
    157 replies | 5019 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Friday, 30th November, 2018, 12:12 AM
    I always dug it, it's basically how we played Greyhawk in 3.x anyways.
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 11:49 PM
    But that is precisely my point: The 3.x PHB (i'm not even sure if 3.0 or 3.5, or if that makes a difference on Greyhawk flavor) was my introduction to Greyhawk as a teenager, and I thought the setting was awesome based just on that. Nothing more needed. The Dawn War mythos...not as gripping as the 3.x GH treatment for me. For a product like an RPG, a mix of blank and filled in is needed. A...
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 11:33 PM
    My understanding is that the generic stuff was by default sort of set in the Nentir Vale, so any given thing not specifically set in one of the official settings was Nentir Vale. But from my perusal of the books outside the PHB, while limited, they seemed pretty light on flavor or explanatory text...
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 11:20 PM
    Tal'Dorei is a pretty wooly and wild continent (much of what you describe is post-Vox Machina), andwas built point by point using the PoL model. It is a case in point for how that sort of campaign is designed: Mercer didn't even like 4E, but he used the setting and campaign advise in Pathfinder/5E. It speaks to the strength of that approach.
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 11:12 PM
    Never did get past the PHB, no. Wasn't very inspired to at the time. With this sort of thing, first impressions can make or break it. It also seems it never got consolidated into a concise form, any sort of Gazeeter or such. Too bad.
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 11:10 PM
    Well, I do prefer to read things that have character and flavor put into them, yes. Stuff like "in-universe" narration, or stories. If it's something that expects me to build it entirely...why do I need the book if it isn't going to provide some bricks?
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 10:53 PM
    No 4ate here, maybe some 4Endifference: I actually like the outline, but it never really got fleshed out and was a bit flat as presented. Mearls take is, indeed, pretty fun. Mercer's is better, but he took the time to flesh it out for publication.
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 10:25 PM
    Sure, if it doesn't end up being worth the time.
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 10:24 PM
    Or "Guild Spells" as a Background Faction feature. Or Dragonshard subrace options.
    157 replies | 5019 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 10:22 PM
    Good for you. The DMG has it as an example of how to construct a pantheon, as well. For my money, if they bother bringing the NV back in any way, Mercer or bust. Mearls having a show makes it more likely, and I like his take as well. But time will tell. A flat, featureless "DM's Kit" isn't so useful, because I already have mythology books that are better for that as is. Give me some flavor,...
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 09:58 PM
    The NV as presented was a little flat. Tal'Dorei gives it life.
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 09:53 PM
    You could put any of the Nentir Vale stuff in Tal'Dorei, without changing a thing. While I think it would be cool to see some expanded Nentir Vale stuff, Tal'Dorei is probably as close as it will come.
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 09:34 PM
    Tal'Dorei has the Dawn War, and all of the gods thereof, presented in a very attractive package.
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 09:33 PM
    Probably somewhere in the middle, but closer to She-Ra than Castlevania. Given the general trend of D&D tie-in products...Endless Quest, Dungeonology, etc.
    157 replies | 5019 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 09:31 PM
    It certainly seems strange to say we will never see something they are actively testing and talking about. I doubt there will be a PF 3E, but that's neither here nor there.
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 09:15 PM
    Except that was what Mearls just laid out...?
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 09:06 PM
    As long as Bumblebee and Optimus Prime show up in Happy Meals and entertain small children, I'm good.
    157 replies | 5019 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 09:04 PM
    They also have the Transformers CCG. The Transformers movies have not been "good" per se, but have made billions of dollars before you even consider toy sales. If Hasbro can get "not 'good' per se" D&D movies that make them money and sell toys, they will be happy. All previous attempts came from the same unprofessional yokels. The big studios are in on it now...which means Hasbro can make...
    157 replies | 5019 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 09:02 PM
    The overall gist of the new Psion prototype is that it is a full 9 spell level Caster, with the unique role of "breaking" the Concentration rules: able to hold multiple Concentration spells, and getting cantrips that can get spell slots pumped in to grow the effects. So the Shaper gets a sort of Invisible Servant cantrip with Concentration that can get HP, AC and damage abilities as spell slots...
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 08:49 PM
    WotC sells IP, they don't buy it. Haven't for yeeeeeeaaaaars. Why pay to make a RPG book for a big movie, when a movie studio will pay for your RPG to make a movie? Hasbro as a whole has been on a quest to make their own IP work for them and not put themselves into the same position that they were with George Lucas twenty years ago.
    157 replies | 5019 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 08:47 PM
    One of the things I have learned from having toddlers is how to appreciate truly all-ages entertainment. They'll be about the right age for the toys too.
    157 replies | 5019 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 08:30 PM
    That She-Ra cartoon is fantastic: if the new toys sell well for Mattel, Hasbro might get ideas.
    157 replies | 5019 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 08:29 PM
    They seem to have decoupled their revenue model from books per se...which is funny, since the books are selling like hotcakes. I think business wise, their hope is to have something like a hot movie, so Hasbro can happily go play with toys and such: a wholly owned IP that supplies a basically bottemless barrel of toy concepts is a gold mine for the parent corporation. I think they would be fine...
    157 replies | 5019 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 08:23 PM
    I do like the pantheon in outline, and that Moradin et al are worshipped in different guides, but they didn't quite bring the mythological flavor over the goal line. It feels like it could be great, with some more flavor and contradictory ideas added in. Which, coincidentally, the Tal'Dorei campaign guide does, for this pantheon, with the serial numbers filed off but cool mythological resonance...
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 07:50 PM
    On the contrary, the best treatment of gods in RPGing is Greg Stafford's real-but-not-so-objective Runequest wackiness. Enlightenment-style clean, logical lines are less fun for me as a mythology buff.
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 07:10 PM
    See, I got into Greyhawk through starting to play with the 3E PHB: the mess actually fits better with mythology. The Greeks had like 10 gods of the Sun, and the Egyptians had even more. The NV felt a little too pat and concise, too much of a gem construct than a mythological one.
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 07:06 PM
    What WotC has been saying is that the D&D player base is more like the Monopoly player base than you might think: and for WotC, that broad base is where the money is in the form of licensing to other companies, not chasing a book boom-bust.
    157 replies | 5019 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 06:14 PM
    However, this willingness to switch editions is apparently not the norm among those who play D&D, which is what WotC found out the hard way. Now they have determined that evergreen is what makes them more money in the short term and long term, while we certainly cannot predict the future, it is safe to say that they will follow the money.
    157 replies | 5019 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 05:38 PM
    Mearls did the math over his break, and the damage given and taken by a CR 1/4 creature that scales with level and has full independence over a maxed full adventure day (6-8 combat encounters of 2-3 rounds each) is the same as the Ranger's spell slot economy. He worked this idea overall out for the Shaper Psion subclass, which is a pet Psion that pours their slots into a mental projection pet,...
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 04:20 PM
    And Monopoly, and Risk. But these have been evolutionary in nature. The edition history of BD&D seems to be the best indicator of what we might eventually see for a 6E.
    157 replies | 5019 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 03:17 AM
    Preferrable, yes: Mearls said he was ok with making something 80% of players would prefer since the current options were dissatisfactory. Doesn't mean they are "better" in concrete terms.
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 10:52 PM
    He went over how they aren't mathematically better, even if he expects most people would take them over the original.
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 09:37 PM
    Which is fair. The Dwarf Hunter, which comes with a bear and a rifle, is like the second or third most popular character to play in WoW. It honestly seems a lot of the frustration with the Beastmaster is that it is not fit to the purpose of being the WoW Hunter Class. But that's not what it is designed to do.
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 08:38 PM
    Both are old enough to be retro at this point. WoW came out when I was a teenager, and Pathfinder is older than walking talking reasoning people I know.
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 08:37 PM
    Replacing subclass features will only allow for features of a similar power level, so it would be right back where it started as far as power satisfaction is concerned. In the first episode, Mearls initially wanted to ignore the Beastmaster in regards to the variant features (he said something along the lines of "with this, I see the Beastmaster kind of going away"), but chat convinced him to...
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 08:32 PM
    Since about 2004. In addition to the World of Warcraft, I believe the Pathfinder iconic Ranger is a Dwarf, maybe with a bear?
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 08:09 PM
    Well, actually, Dwarf Hunter with a cute bear is one of the classic World of Warcraft tropes. Which is, what, 15 years old now...? So, classic enough for me. Large animals for a Beastmaster are suboptimal, admittedly, which is part of the problem of using MM stats for the Ranger feature. Hence, build-a-beast.
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 08:06 PM
    Admittedly it is a subclass that requires careful planning and is finnicky: things like bears are a bit of a trap option versus hawks or snakes. However, the ship on that subclass has sailed. Any errata up to this point is probably the most that will ever be done short of 6E, and 6E is more likely to look like what Mearls is laying down here.
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 06:18 PM
    Try a hawk beastie as a Forest Gnome, it has a lot of neat tricks up it's sleeve. To have a pet that does X damage over Y time, and takes Z damage in Y time, is something that they can measure and have a spreadsheet for: this is the new summoning system that Mearls has been working on. An "effective" pet is a bundle of spell slot math: to make a pet that is as effective as Mearls is laying out...
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 05:31 PM
    The Beastmaster is properly powered for what it was designed to do, have an expendable pet that helps in exploration and somewhat in tactics: there is a mismatch between what the design and what some people want to do with a pet. Mearls goes into the math of spell slots, damage and HP in combat. The current Ranger is about right in power, but complex and fiddley. Giving a Ranger half-casting plus...
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 05:18 PM
    OK, so, build-a-beast is a replacement for spellcasting as a Class feature. You can take the beast instead of spellcasting, separate from subclass. If you want spellcasting, and choose the Beastmaster subclass, then the PHB still applies across the board. You can also choose build-a-beast and any subclass, like Hunter or Gloomstalker, and forgo spells. But the design will let the Beastmaster...
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
    3 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 05:13 PM
    One of the most interesting things I've learned from these videos is what math the designers use and have found to matter in play.
    120 replies | 4574 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 04:58 PM
    Actually, they might not trumpet that specifically, they play their hand close to their chest these days: it may already have done so, even.
    92 replies | 4415 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 04:21 PM
    I halfway wonder if the 5E Starter Set might have snuck it's way into being one of the best-selling D&D products of all time by now? 4.33 years and still selling briskly, selling at Target right next to Settlers of Catan...
    92 replies | 4415 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 03:18 PM
    Spare Sun deity? Check.
    241 replies | 9135 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 05:41 AM
    Could be these are new internal guidelines made for just that reason, that they decided to share.
    24 replies | 1167 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 05:35 AM
    Could be sales would have really tanked without big movies.
    157 replies | 5019 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 05:32 AM
    It is kind of astounding that every book is still in print.
    157 replies | 5019 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 02:58 AM
    We already know that a setting book is in line for next year: it certainly seems to be their plan to give it a shot.
    157 replies | 5019 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 02:57 AM
    Hard is not impossible, and anything worth doing is worth doing poorly.
    157 replies | 5019 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Tuesday, 27th November, 2018, 11:14 PM
    Even if it is only a moderate success of mediocre quality, the effect will likely be positive for the game: a giant neon reminder "hey, D&D, that's a thing still?" won't hurt unless it is teeeeeerrrible.
    157 replies | 5019 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Tuesday, 27th November, 2018, 10:46 PM
    It is an indicator of intention. With any product, whether it will be evergreen is dictated by sales. A product can sell well without being intended to be evergreen, but being successful with the intention to be evergreen makes long-term viability more likely.
    157 replies | 5019 view(s)
    0 XP
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Tuesday, 20th November, 2018

  • 12:14 AM - darkbard mentioned Parmandur in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    I have to admit, it's really, REALLY funny watching people who hate a game, hardly if ever played a game, trying to argue with people with hundreds if not thousands of hours of experience with the game. It really is amusing. Even though I awarded you XPs for this already, it's worth restating. Imaro, Parmandur, etc. seem to be here for the argument (for argument's sake) as they've proven over the course of many, many threads like this in the past (as well as this one) that they have no real interest in 4E ... other than to jump in on the hate.

Friday, 16th November, 2018

  • 11:40 AM - pemerton mentioned Parmandur in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    Two further comments: (1) If, as Parmandur suggested upthread is widespread according to Mearls, someone wants to have an RPG experience which is mostly about GM-mediated fiction and story revelation, then conflict resolution/closed scene resolution will be unnecessary, and task resolution with no system-established finality will be fine - the skill check in effect becomes an element of colour that the GM weaves into the unfolding narration of the ingame situation. This seems to me to be an assumption many modules from the mid-80s on make about how the game will proceed, at least out of combat. (Eg if the PCs fail to find the dirt in the safe because they fail their safecracking roll, then they'll find it in the waste paper bin or in a note on a dead henchman or whatever.) It's hard to see how the "path" in an AP would work without this sort of thing. (2) Contra Lanefan and maybe some others, it's simply not true that differential XP tables in AD&D made fighters stronger than wizards at mid-to-upper levels. A 6th level wi...
  • 09:07 AM - Hussar mentioned Parmandur in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    Hit dice, short rests, healing potions (assumed in the PHB) Cleric spell slots...did you notice the part where at Level 18 the Champion becomes Wolverine and will never be below half HP in a day, before considering Hit Dice...? Hit Dice are limited resources in 5e. You only replenish half on a long rest. Which means that after the first adventuring day, you're down resources. Cleric spell slots? Umm, so, you're adventuring day rests on the cleric's ability to recharge your resources? And, hey, 18th level, congratulations, you finally get to do half of what a caster has been able to do since about 4th level. :erm: Let's compare shall we Parmandur, since you've repeatedly talked about how epic it is for a 17th level fighter to shoot 12 arrows in 2 rounds. Let's not forget though, that it took you 12 levels just to catch up to the monk who has been getting 8 attacks over 2 rounds (12 over three, which equals a 16th level fighter) since 5th level. And, at the same time you get to shoot 12 arrows, that monk can instantly kill 5 opponents per short rest. How come your Hawkeye or Green Arrow cannot so much as slow down a monster with an arrow (something that the characters do in the comics all the time) yet our monk is instantly killing dragons? And you consider this to be equal? Or, let's wander over to the Ranger. At 11th level, the archer ranger has up to 25 attacks in a single round (every target within 5 feet of your original target builds a nice 5x5 square, you don't include the original target in the area of effect). Granted that's extremely rare, but, 5 or 6 attacks in a single round isn't. Congratulations, it onl...

Thursday, 15th November, 2018

  • 12:22 AM - pemerton mentioned Parmandur in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    Don't agree with your summary of what was expressed. the game provides tools to challenge high level spellcasters just like high level martials. If you choose not to employ all of said tools for challenging spellcasters you shouldn't be surprised that they are more powerful because of it. Parmandur was responding to Manbearcat mentioning some particular tools - anti-magic zones and spellbook issues. Here is Manbearcat's post: This is assuming a GM isnít pulling out all kinds of the classic, shallow, obnoxious Anti-Magic blocks and adversarial, endless army of thieves stealing spellbooks moves. Assuming you arenít transparently taking away their tools left and right as a kludge to deal with their cosmic power. And here is Parmandur's reply to those words: Your final assumption would be incorrect. That is literally the DMs job. There is only one possible reading of this: Parmandur things that it is literally the GM's job to deploy anti-magic zones and spellbook-stealing thieves and other similar devices that block the use of spells by the player of a high-level wizard. This is bull... ritual caster alone makes casters more effective than martial PC's in 4e.Is this based on your actual play experience? (1) Not all casters in 4e have ritual casting. (2) I...

Wednesday, 14th November, 2018

  • 04:42 AM - pemerton mentioned Parmandur in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    in all editions casters have - or can have, depending on spells known - the advantage; and I've never claimed otherwise. Other posters (eg Imaro, Parmandur, Sadras) seemed to be disagreeing with me when I said that in this respect 4e differs from 5e (because what you say is not generally the case in 4e, at least as I have experienced it). If in fact they do agree with you that in 5e casters have the advantage in these non-combat, no-time-pressure situations, then most of the discussion is over. Because that's the whole difference I've been talking about with the discussion of DC-by-level, skill challenges and the like. I can't see how this would be any different in 4e than in 5e or 1e or 3e.Then reread some of my posts in this thread, some actual play reports, etc. Manbearcat has already rehearsed the bulk of it in a post not far upthread. It's not rocket science - this is RPG design tech that was pioneered over 20 years ago.
  • 03:39 AM - pemerton mentioned Parmandur in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    ...ous Anti-Magic blocks and adversarial, endless army of thieves stealing spellbooks moves. Assuming you arenít transparently taking away their tools left and right as a kludge to deal with their cosmic power. Your final assumption would be incorrect. That is literally the DMs job. I mean, yes, the game works best when played as intended. More on this at 11.OK, this is the first time in this thread that anyone has posted that the way 5e is "intended" to work is by having the GM block a high level wizard player's capabilities in various ways. Personally I don't enjoy that sort of play, either as GM and player. So let me note another strength of 4e not yet commented on in this thread: it preserves an intraparty balance of mechanical effectiveness even when every player is doing his/her thing in accordance with his/her resources resulting from PC build. EDIT: I saw this: in no-pressure situations the casters are likely to rule the roost. Fair enough With likes from Imaro and Parmandur. So just to be clear - is it now uncontroversial that in fact, in a whole suite of non-combat situations (which would include something "no pressure" like reforging a hammer at one's leisure) 5e spellcasters are more effective than martial PCs? Because that's certainly not true in 4e. But when I've been asserting that the two systems are different in this respect, I thought that was widely denied. So I'm confused.

Sunday, 11th November, 2018

  • 01:40 AM - pemerton mentioned Parmandur in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    Bounded Accuracy allows one to "influence the fiction" over a greater range of mechanical difficulty. If it's true that all DCs are set by GM fiat (as Parmandur said and you seemed to agree with) then what does it mean to say that bounded accuracy allows one to "influence the fiction". Eg if the GM decides that the DC for the holding the hammer in the forge is 15 for the 15th level fighter, but the 1st level fighter doesn't get to roll for it and automatically burns his/her hands off, what work was bounded accuracy doing? I'm not sure why pemerton you are trying to continually push it as having been stated as an all or nothing type thingI'm just trying to understand what is being said. Some posts say that bounded accuracy means that the DC is the same for the 1st and the 15th level PC. And other posts say that the GM can decide that the 1st level PC automatically fails while setting a DC for the 15th level PC which the player of the 1st level PC might succeed at if allowed to roll against it. That second approach does not seem to involve bounded accuracy; in fact it seems directly at odds with it!

Saturday, 10th November, 2018

  • 01:51 AM - pemerton mentioned Parmandur in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    ...as an immediate success whereas a lower level PC might be asked to make a roll.OK, that all may be true. It reinforces my view that it's not clearly the case that there are level appropriate DCs, or indeed a clear methodology for determining what might be possible for a 15h level fighter along the lines I've described upthread. To wit . . . I don't think that's true... I think your question was a little unclear. Mechanically there are certain DC's a first level fighter can never attain. However the first step of determining whether there is even the possibility of a check in 5e is in the hands of the DM. I assumed you were familiar with the play procedures of 5e so I didn't think it was relevant to rehash the fact that the DM decides what a 1st level fighter vs. a 15th level fighter is capable of making a check for... I assumed you were asking what DC range was attainable by a fighter at 15th level vs. one at 1st level.Upthread a number of posters - you in an earlier post, Parmandur, I think others too - have said that 5e uses bounded accuracy, in the sense that the DC for task X doesn't change across levels. (More than one poster has compared this to AC - the AC of a goblin is the same whether the to hit check is made by a 1st level or 15th level PC). If now you're saying that DCs are in fact "subjective" - for non-combat, at least, if not for combat - then the difference from 4e seems to be more about the absence of a clear framework for bundling a series of level-appropriate DCs into an overall resolution framework (ie the skill challenge). Anyway I've intended my claim to be clear: that 4e has a system that makes it straightforward for martial prowess to be displayed and resolved in a way that mitigates against tendencies in fantasy RPGing for playes of spellcasters to have a greater range of possibilities open to them, especially once we get into "epic" territory. I posted an actual play illustration. I think the range of responses that has generated...

Friday, 9th November, 2018

  • 08:24 PM - Imaro mentioned Parmandur in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    Yeh I am calling it so far from being perfect as to be insulting. Note we arent discussing details like how to make it feel like the person has one "secret" vulnerable spot without making it ridiculously over powered. Even giving innate damage resistance would be hard pressed not to be. Takes extra damage from critical hits would not be a great off set but it would have the flavor. Well that's your call. For me 5e gets the feel close enough (while still maintaining playability of the game) using the methods Parmandur described above that it's not a concern for me.

Monday, 5th November, 2018

  • 10:51 AM - MechaPilot mentioned Parmandur in post WotC President Chris Cocks Talks Magic and D&D
    Granted that each edition is a separate product line, it is unheard of in D&D for year four to be the biggest year of an edition. 3.0 and 4E were already gone by the same point, and 5E is on Pace to surpass 3.5 timr in print in a matter of months. Did I say it wasn't impressive? Also, @bedir than, it's odd that you give @Parmandur XP for stating that each edition is a separate product line, while giving me a hard time about making that exact same statement. Is your real issue with my post that you don't think I'm impressed enough by their growth?

Saturday, 6th October, 2018

  • 05:33 AM - pukunui mentioned Parmandur in post Updated errata will be released within the next month!
    Parmandur: You do realize that now I have no choice but to go back and rewatch that part of the Dragon+ episode to see what exactly it was JC actually said ... sigh ... EDIT: OK, here's the episode: Dragon+ July 31st episode Around the 25-minute mark, Greg reads a question someone has posted about whether they will be putting out another UA on alternative class features. Jeremy replies that they don't want to proceed rapidly down that road until they do another overall game satisfaction survey, as it's been a while since the last one, and the old data might prove to be wrong (e.g. Enough people might actually be happy with the PHB ranger now that it won't be worth them spending any more time trying to fix it.) The pertinent bit is around the 27-minute mark: "I actually just approved errata for the three core books earlier today, and there will be some tweaks in a few places actually that I think people will be pleased with that will make it unnecessary to have any kind of alternative fe...

Friday, 21st September, 2018

  • 05:54 PM - lowkey13 mentioned Parmandur in post Mearls On D&D's Design Premises/Goals
    Why not? If my local bakery, that produces and sells my favorite bagels, decides to only sell donuts from now on, why can't I say "Hey, you guys stopped making my favorite bagels, what's up with that?" They are certainly within their rights to say "Well, donuts sell better, and we don't really like making bagels, so I guess you're out of luck." And I'm certainly within my rights to respond "Well, I only really liked your bagels, so if you start making them, I'll come back, but otherwise I'll just have to skip bagels." I think Parmandur and @Sacrosanct explained this already, but, to the extent you wish to make this analogy to design, it would be more like this: Your baker has decided to drop bagels, and only make donuts. So, every day, you come in and say, "Hey, you know how you could make those donuts better? By making a donut that has ... let's see ... poppy seed, sesame seeds, onion & garlic flakes, pretzel salt, and pepper on it, and then serving that donut with lox and cream cheese!" Again, you are perfectly within your rights to say the following: a. I don't like donuts, I want you to make bagels instead! b. I like donuts, but I think think you can make better donuts ... like, those crossaint donuts! Where it goes bad is if you ignore what they are doing, and instead insist that they make your donuts like bagels; that just makes everyone miserable. :)

Tuesday, 11th September, 2018


Saturday, 25th August, 2018

  • 05:46 PM - Kobold Stew mentioned Parmandur in post What races are left for D&D to do?
    Parmandur has a good list. Gnolls. Mearls has, I think, been clear that gnolls are not going to be officially playable in 5e (link). It seems arbitrary to me, but the presentation of the race in VGTM has to my eye ruled out the possibility of them walking this back. I'll note that the results of the survey Parmandur linked to (here) are not entirely conisistent with what Mearls says about Gnolls. Half-giants are excluded because the designers have worked not to allow any playable race larger than Medium sized. Pixies are excluded for the converse reason: there are not going to be any races smaller than Small.

Saturday, 12th May, 2018

  • 11:36 PM - Demetrios1453 mentioned Parmandur in post List of monsters confirmed in Mordenkainen's Tome of Foes
    Via Twitter we now have the Monsters by challenge rating. And also the answer to which Lords of the Nine are in this book. Heavy spoilers. 97430 So the answer to how many lords of the Nine is one. Only Zariel is in the book. Also a few strange things like one of the monsters being an Oinoloth. Edit Source: https://twitter.com/fistfullofdice/status/995054993328820224 Very interesting! Definitely leaked far before we had surmised - usually we would have a few more days yet! Besides that surprising news on the lack of Lords of the Nine (which indicates they are holding most of them back for a later book - unless @Parmandur is right, and there are some at the top of the next page), some other observations: White and black abishai have maintained their previous power level, but green, blue, and red are much higher. We had a hint of this from the Roll 20 preview showing the blue abishai CR, but we didn't know they would split them this way. Derro made it in, like I assumed they would. There's a nice range of duergar, and even more drow variants than we knew about. Really, running a drow-centric campaign from 1 - 20 would easily be possible with little in the way of any CR gaps. I, too, wonder what an "oinoloth" is. If it were the traditional Oinoloth, it should have a much higher CR, as being lord of the Wasting Tower traditionally gave one almost god-like powers. Beyond that, pretty much all the yugoloths I assumed would appear do show up, other than, oddly, the piscoloth. Same with the demons and devils, those I felt were missing from the MM have pretty much all made appearances here. Sadly, other t...

Wednesday, 9th May, 2018


Sunday, 21st January, 2018

  • 05:18 PM - Corpsetaker mentioned Parmandur in post Kate Welch is WotC's New D&D Designer
    Parmandur You do realize the laugh button doesn't work in that way anymore. You look silly trying to "laugh with" a post that the original author wasn't laughing to begin with. You are giving me XP and making yourself look silly.

Thursday, 23rd November, 2017

  • 09:47 PM - pukunui mentioned Parmandur in post Marathon, Broadway, and Catacomb: Upcoming D&D Products?
    Assuming the information about Broadway and Labyrinth both being big adventures and released only two months apart is true, it would sound likely that they're a two-part adventure much like Hoard of the Dragon Queen + Rise of Tiamat. I think it's kind of useless to speculate on the contents of a product based on a single word that may or may not be related in hindsight. I mean, sure, Cloak = Vampire and Dagger = Shakespearean giants... you can make sense of it after the fact, but that's some Law of Fives-level justification.Indeed. I mean, it's entirely possible that they codenamed SKT "Dagger" simply because they'd codenamed the previous one "Cloak" so they could have a little chuckle about "cloak and dagger". Parmandur: Could you please get back to me regarding the PMs I've sent you pertaining to comments you've made in this thread?
  • 02:05 AM - Hussar mentioned Parmandur in post So Was That Z Fellow right?
    While I'm not about to defend Parmandur about the head hunting thing, I think he's gone too far, he does make a point. This is a one trick pony that adds nothing else to the group. I LOVE characters like this because it's so easy to challenge them. Drop them in a pit filled with water - watch that dump stat Str try to swim and climb. Use the rules for buying magic items as a downtime activity and watch them fail every time because they have no social skills. Fun. Or, heck, the Ravenloft module has no magic pistol crossbows at all, and no magic bolts. At least, none that we found. Watch Mr. Specialist whine and complain because he's doing half damage to every single major opponent in the entire module, that, after all, only goes to about 10th level, so, this build actually only comes into play in the very, very tail end.

Wednesday, 15th November, 2017

  • 06:58 AM - pemerton mentioned Parmandur in post Why D&D is not (just) Tolkien
    when do we start seeing non-human protagonists in fantasy? In the pulps, the first one I can think of is Elric and that's pretty recent. There are many complaints about the "Cantina Scene" thing in D&D where the local tavern has a mix of different species all drinking together, but, that concept is pretty much straight from Tolkien. No disagreement at all on this score. I'm pretty sure my first (or near-to-first) post in both the Tolkien threads has been to say that the whole idea of non-human fantasy races which are basically human cultures in funny suits - and hence which lend themselves to literary treatments, and RPing, just as if they were human - comes from JRRT. To my mind, it's the most obvious thing that D&D owes to Tolkien. EDIT: This is why I said you and Parmandur are both right. GH owes its non-humans to JRRT. But everything else about GH seems to me closer to the Hyborian Age than to Middle Earth. Also, for what it's worth, I'm currently GMing a Burning Wheel game using GH as the setting, and the tensions between the S&S aspects of GH (which the BW rules for humans support well) and the Tolkien-esque aspects of GH (which the BW rules for elves and dwarves support better than any other RPG system I know) is one source of challenge in GMing that game.


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Thursday, 13th December, 2018

  • 08:27 AM - Mercurius quoted Parmandur in post Which Faerun setting guide?
    3.0 book and 1E "Grey Box" are the best main books. This, with everything else a distant step behind. For systemless lore, the Grand History of the Realms is a good book. It came out between 3.5 and 4E, I believe, and is a nice complement to the FRCS. Ad in Ed Greenwood's FR book and you've got a great quartet of FR books.

Monday, 10th December, 2018

  • 06:47 AM - MNblockhead quoted Parmandur in post There is a lot of stuff out for D&D right now, and sales are doing fine (Amazon)
    What's so crazy is that they had no idea: WotC obviously has access to a large amount of miniatures, and convention players do too, so it wasn't necessarily so clear that most people don't play games with them, for instance. When I wanted to get back into gaming, I was really put off by the need for miniatures. Watching Chris Perkins's videos helped and hurt. I loved the videos where he explains his thinking and gives tops on running the game, but his elaborate, pre-drawn maps seemed far beyond me. I bought into the impression many people had that 4e was heavily focused on tactical miniature combats and tried to make it run more like a video game, which didn't appeal to me. So, I never gave it a chance. A friend suggested Pathfinder and when I looked into it, it just seemed overwhelming. Maybe it would be fun to play, but I could never see running it. I chalked it up to my having a lot more time for gaming in high school and stuck to board games. Then 5e came out. It still felt subst...
  • 06:07 AM - MNblockhead quoted Parmandur in post There is a lot of stuff out for D&D right now, and sales are doing fine (Amazon)
    But how does this fit into the narrative about how 5E is the worst, the books are mediocre, and nobody likes the game...? Inquiring minds want to know! Because, once us hoi polloi like it, it is no longer cool or high quality. Luckily there is a very long tail of high-concept TTRPGs for the hipster dogs to chase.

Sunday, 9th December, 2018

  • 07:21 AM - Ratskinner quoted Parmandur in post There is a lot of stuff out for D&D right now, and sales are doing fine (Amazon)
    Extremely facetious, I can assure you. There is no "become" about it, "D&D" means RPGing to people and pretty much always has. Powered by the Apocalypse, as far as even experienced and knowledgeable players, is basically "D&D with less math." Network externalities might play a role. A bigger factor in this continued success is that WotC spent years studying how people play RPGs, what they look for in a game, and built a system fit to purpose. That, multiplied by those network externalities, is a potential force. I agree. We saw how well it worked out (market-wise, not personal preference-wise) when they went the other direction.* I'm not as sure that one works without the other. That is, if D&D didn't already have those externalities built-in, I'm not sure that the research/development would matter nearly as much. I can't think of an rpg example, but I would point to some of the early social media competitors as examples of the network not being enough. Some of the those products built ...
  • 05:30 AM - robus quoted Parmandur in post Review Dragon Heist, Mad Mage, and Ravnica!
    I didn't know Googling "Dragon Heist review" was "mysterious," but here is a sampling, examples are easily multiplied with a search: "D&Dís latest adventure is state of the art tabletop design" at Polygon: https://www.polygon.com/2018/9/11/17845902/dungeons-and-dragons-waterdeep-dragon-heist-review "Review: Waterdeep: Dragon Heist Is an Amazing Introduction to 'Dungeons & Dragons'" at comicbook.com: https://comicbook.com/gaming/2018/09/12/dungeons-and-dragons-waterdeep-dragon-heist-review/ I found Comicbook.comís review to be much more helpful than Polygonís which seemed more a repackaging of the press release...
  • 02:59 AM - Lily of the Valley quoted Parmandur in post Review Dragon Heist, Mad Mage, and Ravnica!
    Riiiiight. I see snark, but none of the mysterious websites you mentioned earlier.

Saturday, 8th December, 2018

  • 11:38 PM - TerraDave quoted Parmandur in post There is a lot of stuff out for D&D right now, and sales are doing fine (Amazon)
    But how does this fit into the narrative about how 5E is the worst, the books are mediocre, and nobody likes the game...? Inquiring minds want to know! The corebooks are selling really well relative to the adventures. But as I have been reminded many times on these boards, core rule books always outsell adventures, in all times and places. To have a setting book in the top 200, and an art book in the top 500, are both pretty interesting. Curious to see how they do over the next few months.
  • 11:00 PM - Zeromaru X quoted Parmandur in post Nentir Vale Coming to Dungeons and Dragons
    It was still a change, again you seem to be operating on some definition of "change" that isn't the commonly understood meaning of the word. That's why I'm saying that is a "progresive change" vs a "full retcon". Like yeah, the Forgotten Realms got blown up in 4e, but this did not changed the backstory of the Realms. It was a progresive change because some metaplot. You can argue wheter this plot was bad or good, but that is another beast altogether. The changes in the Realms at least follow a progresive line that acknowledge the existence of the prior lore. With the Raven Queen, her prior lore is incompatible with her new lore (from goddess of death to a being that disrupts death - something that goes against her godly teachings). Pretty sure it is a coincidence. The Raven Queen being central in Critical Role is probably played a big role in wanting her in a core book release, and a desire to make her compatible with other settings necessitated the changes: MToF Raven Queen plays n...
  • 10:41 PM - Zeromaru X quoted Parmandur in post Nentir Vale Coming to Dungeons and Dragons
    Didn't they explained those changes through novels, tho? I have 6 novels that explain from were 4e tieflings came from, and they pretty much state that the Planescape tieflings still exist. Also, some 4e book explain the differences between 4e eladrin and "celestial" eladrin (and both coexist). So, in many instantes those changes are advancement of the novels' metaplots, not outright retcons just because reasons. Because in the Nentir Vale she is THE god of Death, who had killed the previous god of Death in the Nentir Vale setting, Kelemvor. This is something Mearls called out as specifically awkward for FR compatibility, as Kelemvor is the existing god of Death who is still active in the game. The idea with the change, making the Raven Queen a sort of Goth Fairy Queen of the Shadowfell means she can be in FR, she can be in Greyhawk, she can show up on any homebrew, without replacing the local god of Death (though she can still be the god of Deatrh in a Dawn War setting). This has relativel...
  • 07:22 PM - Charlaquin quoted Parmandur in post Nentir Vale Coming to Dungeons and Dragons
    He is pitching it as his heavily homebrewed variation, though. He's pretty upfront about that, mentions it frequently. Ok, thatís fair. I havenít watched the stream because Iím super disinterested (which, again, is an unfortunate way to feel about a Nentir Vale stream.) If heís really clear and up-front about it being heavily homebrewed, then a lot of my reservations are assuaged.
  • 06:48 PM - Charlaquin quoted Parmandur in post Nentir Vale Coming to Dungeons and Dragons
    Technically, there hasn't been a Forgotten Realms take on the Raven Queen: MToF is not a FR book at all, but generic D&D with more Greyhawk and about as much Dragonlance or Spelljammer as FR. But the Dawn War version of her, per the DMG, is still a goddess. Sure. Point being, the MToF Raven Queen is easy for me to dismiss as not the same character as the NV Raven Queen. The Heroes of the Vale deities are not so easily separated from their Nentir Vale counterparts, which makes them look less like new characters inspired by their NV counterparts and more like actual retcons to the NV gods.
  • 06:45 PM - Charlaquin quoted Parmandur in post Nentir Vale Coming to Dungeons and Dragons
    Because in the Nentir Vale she is THE god of Death, who had killed the previous god of Death in the Nentir Vale setting, Kelemvor. This is something Mearls called out as specifically awkward for FR compatibility, as Kelemvor is the existing god of Death who is still active in the game. Nerull, actually. But yeah, considering Nerul is alive and well in Greyhawk, her role in Nentir Vale doesnít really work for the ok-itís-planescape-but-weíre-not-going-to-call-it-that theyíre going for in 5eís implied default setting. Heck, Nentir Vale as presented in 4e doesít fit what theyíre trying to do with 5e on the whole. And thatís why, despite not caring for this new take on the Raven Queen, I was content to write her off as a completely separate character that simply happens to share the same name, just as NV Nerull and GH Nerull are separate characters, NV Asmodeus and FR Asmodeus are separate characters, etc. This is not whatís happening in Mearlsís Heroes of the Vale campaign though. Heís not pitc...
  • 05:22 PM - SkidAce quoted Parmandur in post Nentir Vale Coming to Dungeons and Dragons
    MToF Raven Queen plays nicely with GreyHawk, Forgotten Realms, etc. Mearls said as much about the changes in the MToF lead-up. Why didn't previous Raven Queen work?
  • 07:54 AM - Ratskinner quoted Parmandur in post There is a lot of stuff out for D&D right now, and sales are doing fine (Amazon)
    But how does this fit into the narrative about how 5E is the worst, the books are mediocre, and nobody likes the game...? Inquiring minds want to know! I realize this was probably a bit facetious, and I don't think 5e is the worst, but.... One explanation is the power of network externalities. That is, D&D has always been mediocre, but it is the most widespread (being the first in the market) and so is much easier to find a group to play in (which...y'know...is kinda important). Once a standard like that gets put in place, its can be very hard to displace, even if its demonstrably inferior to newer improved standards. This is especially true if the imperfect standard "works pretty okay" and isn't totally trash so that a lot of users already have favorite workarounds (i.e. houserules) for its quirks. I would say that most of D&D (across editions) falls into that category.* 5e has made adoption easy, and they've gotten back to its "works for the most part" roots, that amplifies the streng...
  • 03:33 AM - Kramodlog quoted Parmandur in post Review Dragon Heist, Mad Mage, and Ravnica!
    I can back my position perfectly well. Do you have numbers that show the adventures are not selling well? :) I've been clear that I was speculating. I wasn't trying to present my opinion as fact by making an appeal to authority by refering some unnamed websites.

Friday, 7th December, 2018

  • 10:14 PM - Azzy quoted Parmandur in post Mike Mearls Happy Fun Hour, Nov 27 2018
    The issue is, that the Beastmaster Ranger already pours all the mathematical subclass value into the Beast as is. In order to get a more powerful Beast, something somewhere has to give in the main Class economy, such as spell slots or combat prowess. And yet, the paladin can summon a steed and still have a subclass that does other things. Perhaps the beastmaster as it is is just a weak subclass especially when comparing it and the ranger base class with the paladin and any of its subclasses. :/
  • 09:55 PM - Azzy quoted Parmandur in post Mike Mearls Happy Fun Hour, Nov 27 2018
    It would be easier to see the comparability with the Mount, but that would end up with a less potent and even more disposable companion than the Beastmaster currently gets, albeit with their own turn and more easily retrievable. Going with what the docyor is suggesting is a Beastmaster subclass that actively augments the capability of such a spell.
  • 06:28 PM - ehren37 quoted Parmandur in post Mike Mearls Happy Fun Hour, Nov 27 2018
    Sure, they are absolutely comparable in mathematical terms: the Ranger Beast is better than the Paladin Mount in every way, except that it can come back. But the Ranger pet is replaceable, and probably should be retrievable on an individual level: easy enough for a DM to supply, and the mega-Beastie seems to have that built-in. What? No it isnt. You want to tout the ranger's companion for exploration, for some reason. A basic animal vs a telepathic, independently acting creature that understands common. The only thing the ranger's is really better at is having more HP. It's attack bonus doesn't matter much, because it's a zero sum game in giving your action to the stupid beast. And again, one pile of garbage is your entire subclass feature on an already bad chassis. The other is gravy on on a great class. But hey, lets wring our hands about just letting the crappy wolf bite someone on it's own.
  • 04:30 PM - Ralif Redhammer quoted Parmandur in post WotC's Nathan Stewart Teases New D&D Setting Book in 2019
    Fixed it. Mearls also had the Big Show being a Half-Giant in the Stream of Many Eyes.
  • 09:19 AM - vecna00 quoted Parmandur in post WotC's Nathan Stewart Teases New D&D Setting Book in 2019
    Mearls in a Q&A on his Happy Fun Hour recently laid out what would be needed for Dark Sun. He was very specific and detailed, in a way that suggested he had not just thought about it briefly, but outlined it extensively. Do you happen to know which episode? I think I missed this one!


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