View Profile: Parmandur - Morrus' Unofficial Tabletop RPG News
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Today, 06:30 AM
    At the risk of taking the topic entirely too seriously, from the WotC website: "The City of Splendors is certainly the greatest of the Sword Coast cities and perhaps the greatest cities on the face of the world. It’s home to as many as two million people, though an accurate census is all but impossible since so many come and go, visiting the open city to trade and otherwise seek fame and...
    30 replies | 502 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Today, 05:45 AM
    Sounds like a good rule of thumb, so about 1 in 20,000. That would give a huge city like Waterdeep with 2 million people about 100 adventurers total. With the major factions headquartered there, like the Harper's and Force Grey, that sounds about right for traditional D&D Sword & Sorcery shenanigans.
    30 replies | 502 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Today, 05:20 AM
    In FR terms, definitely: I wonder how they would work it for a new, more generic product, though.
    80 replies | 8476 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Today, 12:56 AM
    However, the 3.x DMGs had some demographic assumptions that one may or may not want to use, and this generator has some fun with those numbers: https://donjon.bin.sh/d20/demographics/ There was a PDF of city generation rules, including population stats, from WotC: http://archive.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/we/20030719a
    30 replies | 502 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Today, 12:51 AM
    That's the base assumption in the rulebooks: NPCs are not leveling characters.
    30 replies | 502 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Today, 12:20 AM
    Interesting: in the event of a DoD book like GoS (It'd seem to be a good candidate eventually), I wouldn't necessarily bet on it being explicitly in the FR: they might revert it to generic, and put the Realmsian stuff in a sidebar of suggestions. I've been reading GoS the past couple of days, and it us pretty cool. The Saltmarsh town & region chapter is pretty well-rooted in Greyhawk, and I've...
    80 replies | 8476 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Yesterday, 11:03 PM
    My understanding is that it was written and published originally to be 1E "setting generic," hence the use of a Deities & Demigods mishmash. It was the reprint that was designated as a FR book, as it coincided with the original publishing push.
    80 replies | 8476 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Friday, 24th May, 2019, 06:19 PM
    Being better at a suboptimal choice (going nova) is not a power boost. Admittedly, it may make playing a Wizard well in standard play marginally more difficult.
    92 replies | 3045 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Friday, 24th May, 2019, 04:57 PM
    Different /= significant per se. Significance in actual play is a different thing. Also, Wizards don't want to nova, as that can get them killed assuming standard gameplay is in action.
    92 replies | 3045 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Friday, 24th May, 2019, 03:03 PM
    All the spell point Wizard can do with the points is cast the same Wizard spells. While there might be some efficiencies to be gained from gaming the numbers, they are not significantly different from slots.
    92 replies | 3045 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Friday, 24th May, 2019, 02:40 AM
    As the crow flies, Turmish is actually still pretty far off from the Old Empires.
    5 replies | 406 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 11:36 PM
    The Desert Nomads series might also work. This model has a lot of possibility.
    80 replies | 8476 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 10:35 PM
    Wizards are already incredibly flexible.
    92 replies | 3045 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 10:35 PM
    The Psi-points have an exact mathematical relationship with slots: if they recovered on a short rest, it would be more like the Warlock, and even more overpowered than it is already.
    92 replies | 3045 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 10:25 PM
    My bet for next Spring is something along the lines of Ghosts of Saltmarsh, but with Desert of Desolation: wilderness rules and generation tables for desert life, maybe an Egyptian themed starting town set in the Old Empires region with suggestions for other worlds. Dunno if any other old adventures would fit in, but seems a good candidate for this sort of treatment.
    80 replies | 8476 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 09:24 PM
    I think "should" is strong: but "will" is accurate, since WotC is uninterested in providing a Class that DMs will not allow.
    92 replies | 3045 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 08:36 PM
    Well, the point values are not necessarily intuitive, but they represent the math used in the game to evaluate the slots. As such, the DMG system is perfectly in balance, and can be plugged or unplugged from the game with no effect. What they found in practice with the Mystic was that people didn't want to use the variant system at all, or any variant system.
    92 replies | 3045 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 03:30 PM
    The Mystic was already using the spell points system from the DMG. That's what people didn't like. And the Psion tests so far were using spell slots as power points, essentially. Because in 5E, the only difference is surface math. The core shtick for the Psion moving forwards seems to be playing with the standard Concentration rules, actually. More than one Concentration effect.
    92 replies | 3045 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019, 11:28 PM
    It's like that, yes. It is the game that Chris Perkins ran for years with the Penny Arcade guys and Patrick Rothfuss, before Jeremy Crawford took over as DM. Kate Welch is in the "C Team" spin-off that Mike from Penny Arcade runs. I'm not certain how the viewership compares with Critical Role for certain, but it is comparable. I don't watch the show, but it is certainly one of the biggest...
    24 replies | 978 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019, 11:26 PM
    Why would you expect that?
    24 replies | 978 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019, 09:58 PM
    Do they watch the show? The audience for the show is highly likely to be interested in buying this, and they have a significant viewership.
    24 replies | 978 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019, 09:28 PM
    Oh, yeah, this is going to be big. WotC is hyping other books partly because this will work fine by itself.
    24 replies | 978 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019, 03:08 PM
    Reasonably, yes; however, ratings online are weighted to 5 stars.
    41 replies | 1945 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019, 06:30 AM
    The interesting thing isn't so much that they are thinking about mass combat rules because they have been toying with that for years, as that the vehicle rules actually evolved out of what were first mass combat rules that haven't been broadcast yet (Mearls said they would be in UA "sometime soon").
    32 replies | 2197 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019, 06:22 AM
    In terms of Reddit and forum reviews, only seen good things.
    41 replies | 1945 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019, 06:10 AM
    Yeah, the Acquisitions Incorporated book is an official D&D branded rule book as well. Given that Eberron was a successful experiment, I reckon we might seem them fo something similar, as you suggest.
    24 replies | 978 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 10:54 PM
    Well, they are already re-using them in Baldur's Gate. Dollars to donuts, they will be in Eberron, too.
    32 replies | 2197 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 09:49 PM
    Yeah, the Isle of Dread book is good, too. Similarly they, uh, didn't adjust some aspects that haven't aged well.
    22 replies | 851 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 09:43 PM
    Tales from the Yawning Portal is a pretty good bet for this need.
    22 replies | 851 view(s)
    5 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 09:11 PM
    2E representation on electronic tabletops might be somewhat lower due to the edition not being super-mini dependent: the same applies for "0E" and 1E, but those sold more at the time than 2 E ended up doing. I voted for 1E, because I bought 1E books to use with 5E and have enjoyed them more than my experience with 2E, 3.x or 4E.
    206 replies | 6693 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 08:18 PM
    They seem to have hit on a good idea with themed books. Want to do seafaring adventure? Buy Ghosts of Saltmarsh. Don't buy if that isn't appealing. They seem to be reprinting many of the vehicle rules in Baldur's Gate, and probably in the Eberron hardcover. WotC has shown themselves to be very comfortable with reprinting rules if needed.
    32 replies | 2197 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 05:42 PM
    Yeah, exactly...
    32 replies | 2197 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 05:11 PM
    I think if we ever see a 6E, it will be more of a reorganization, with rules from latter books baked into the core three.
    32 replies | 2197 view(s)
    4 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 05:08 PM
    NewbieDM just put out a podcast interview with Mearls, who wrote all of the relevant lore text: his stated goal was to provide plenty of flavor, but such that could be easily reskined
    53 replies | 3628 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Tuesday, 21st May, 2019, 04:58 PM
    Good interview. Interesting to learn that the book was going to resemble TftYP more, but Welch pushed for more generally useful material when she was brought on board. Also, Mearls wrote all of the Greyhawk narrative lore based on his time running Keoland for Living Greyhawk: Welch edited it as a Greyhawk newb to make sure it would be generally useful, while Kim Mohan was brought in to make sure...
    32 replies | 2197 view(s)
    5 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Monday, 20th May, 2019, 06:38 PM
    Yeah, in addition to trashing the test Mystic and starting from scratch, they made it pretty clear that sticking to spell slots was one of the big takeaways from that playtest. Who knows where they will go with a Class in particular, but it will a spell slot user.
    92 replies | 3045 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Monday, 20th May, 2019, 04:33 AM
    The gist is that it is a high magic setting: magic so advanced it has effects on society similar to industrialization and science. Hence sentient Golem player characters as a Race, Artificers as magic inventora, magic trains and airships, etc. Everything is slightly different from standard D&D, but still definitely D&D.
    70 replies | 4337 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Monday, 20th May, 2019, 03:34 AM
    Yeaaah, I would have said Eberron a week ago, bit I psyched myself out...
    70 replies | 4337 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Sunday, 19th May, 2019, 10:44 PM
    NewbieDM on Twitter is saying there was more Spelljammer scuttlebutt at the event, in terms of teases of the ships: I'm currently thinking Planescape, with info on Spelljammer vehicles.
    70 replies | 4337 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Sunday, 19th May, 2019, 03:28 PM
    Perkins went out of his way to talk about how they are secretly active in the Baldur's Gate area with their cultists, one of the big tells for the big adventure being Baldur's Gate based.
    70 replies | 4337 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Sunday, 19th May, 2019, 01:30 AM
    The Dungeon Mayhem expansion: the press release had it alongside those other three as a product.
    70 replies | 4337 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Sunday, 19th May, 2019, 12:39 AM
    Given that they announced four products yesterday, I give even odds Sunday they announce a video game, show or movie.
    70 replies | 4337 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Saturday, 18th May, 2019, 09:10 PM
    I detect a scent of Planescape in the air.
    70 replies | 4337 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Friday, 17th May, 2019, 10:02 PM
    Nothign to see here
    71 replies | 3667 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Friday, 17th May, 2019, 06:08 PM
    An easy way to make PCs out of various critters: Savage Species was a fun book, even if the rules are wonky when push comes to shove.
    71 replies | 3667 view(s)
    3 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 15th May, 2019, 02:59 PM
    zNational borders are a relatively recent historical development. The fuzziness, given the monster-swamped nature of the region, make sense. Leaves it to DM control.
    67 replies | 2508 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 15th May, 2019, 02:05 AM
    Some of the details of the multuclassing rules, and expanded Invocation options.
    117 replies | 5815 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Tuesday, 14th May, 2019, 11:27 PM
    Each subclass is, that's what the pet is doing for each one.
    117 replies | 5815 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Tuesday, 14th May, 2019, 03:16 PM
    While you are right that there is nothing particularly wrong with the Sword Coast as presented, characterizing Gygax as ignorant of history and geopolitics is equally incorrect.
    67 replies | 2508 view(s)
    5 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Monday, 13th May, 2019, 04:27 PM
    I find that plausible: Perkins has dubbed them canonical for D&D story purposes, at least.
    53 replies | 3628 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Monday, 13th May, 2019, 06:57 AM
    Separated substances cannot be said to "precede" or be "preceded" strictly speaking. What I was referring to was how you can have the Oerdian, Flan, Suel, and Balkunish gods with overlapping and contradictory portfolios, as with Greek, Egyptian, Babylonian, etc. deities in the Middle East after Alexander mixed everything up.
    67 replies | 2508 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Monday, 13th May, 2019, 04:59 AM
    To the gods point, I think Gygax wanted to create something like the chaos of the Hellenistic Middle East, with mishmashes of different cultures floating around.
    67 replies | 2508 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Monday, 13th May, 2019, 02:13 AM
    Well, sure: that's the pitch. Forgotten Reslms has a different spice profile (more Narnia & Tolkien, big dose of Hippy-Dippiness, less Medieval and more Reannisance), but the genericness is the selling point for tabletop RPG purposes.
    67 replies | 2508 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Sunday, 12th May, 2019, 10:34 PM
    I basically agree with you regarding the absurdity of the neo-Malthusan moral dilemma, but I will point out that the Krogan did not develop their own culture naturally, the Salarians uplifted them for their own purposes. They have an unnaturla society of violent sociopaths, and it didn't work out well. Then again, the logistics for that wouldn't work either, so...
    95 replies | 5492 view(s)
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  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Sunday, 12th May, 2019, 09:14 PM
    It's basically just standard, by the book D&D, without the metaplot weight of a ton of popular novels and regular cataclysms common to the Forgotten Realms or Dragonlance. The lack of major distinction is basically the selling point: it's generic fantasy, with room for whichever kind of story you want (ancient Mayan temple ruins? Sure. Arabian Nights? Sure. Grissly Medieval urban shenanigans?...
    67 replies | 2508 view(s)
    4 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Friday, 10th May, 2019, 03:35 PM
    I, for one, embrace the nascent sexual counter-revolution. History cycles on these things, and it is good that justice for victims of perverts is a priority now.
    73 replies | 6746 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Friday, 10th May, 2019, 04:48 AM
    The existence of my children suggests at least two D&D players have what it takes, so...
    73 replies | 6746 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 9th May, 2019, 06:50 PM
    Not really: other than Living Greyhawk stuff, it was just used for flavor text in 3.x books and Dungeon/Dragon magazine stuff.
    53 replies | 3628 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 9th May, 2019, 04:04 PM
    You are correct: not only that, there are three separate Known World Gazeeters, as the two reprints of the original have one each, and the 5E adaptation has all of the same material as well. In retrospect, I think the choice of Isle of Dread and the whole book was designed to play nicely into GoS.
    53 replies | 3628 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 8th May, 2019, 03:52 PM
    Mearls ran a Star Frontiers 5E game last year at some Cons. Maybe this is what he has been doing for the past few months...
    33 replies | 1884 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Wednesday, 8th May, 2019, 03:51 PM
    That was my initial thought, too: technically, we already have a licensed 5E version of Mystara, in the Isle of Dread hardcover. I wouldn't be surprised if that factored into including Mystara here: set Saltmarsh in the Known World, use the Goodman Games Isle of the Deep scenario as a follow-up adventure for veteran sailor PCs.
    53 replies | 3628 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Tuesday, 7th May, 2019, 12:50 AM
    Actually seems fairly plausible.
    33 replies | 1884 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 2nd May, 2019, 05:38 PM
    Chapter 2 from Rise of Tiamat, "The Sea of Moving Ice," with the glacier lair, is also a pretty good choice for a heist against a dragon's lair scenario.
    16 replies | 626 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Parmandur's Avatar
    Thursday, 2nd May, 2019, 04:35 PM
    You might want to pick up Rise of Tiamat, there are chapters in there that might fit your needs quite well, taken out of the AP context.
    16 replies | 626 view(s)
    0 XP
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Monday, 27th May, 2019


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Thursday, 23rd May, 2019

  • 12:33 AM - Jer mentioned Parmandur in post 2019 WotC D&D Releases
    ...his ... show? (Some of them watch Critical Role, if it's like that.) Keep in mind we live in the WORLD OF THE FUTURE where there is far more entertainment content available for free or insanely cheap than anyone could ever hope to watch/read/listen to in their lifetimes. And shows - especially actual play podcasts and streams that can be produced cheaply - can be "profitable enough" these days with a few hundred thousand listeners (or far less, depending on how the creators define "profitable enough" and how supportive with their dollars the fans are). I don't follow Acquisitions Inc. myself, but it's the show that started its life as a D&D actual play that Chris Perkins DMed and the Penny Arcade guys and Scott Kurtz of PvP were players in. It's spun off to its own thing since then - I think one of the Penny Arcade guys is now the DM maybe? Anyway it's apparently pretty big on Twitch I've been told (by folks who are much younger and "hipper" than my old self). ETA: Or what Parmandur said.

Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019


Tuesday, 12th March, 2019

  • 10:33 PM - CleverNickName mentioned Parmandur in post Critical Role's Kickstarter Breaks $1,000,000 In About An Hour!
    Critical Role has been extremely diverse in guests they have brought on the show, and several of the cast members would not have been accepted as "white" a few decades ago.The core cast of Critical Role is diverse in ways that a lot of other similar content creators aren't. Nearly half the cast is female. Taliesin came out as bisexual back in 2017. Like Parmandur said: they have been extremely diverse with the guests to the show, as well. The cast is white, but I wouldn't say they lack diversity.

Tuesday, 26th February, 2019

  • 02:59 PM - oreofox mentioned Parmandur in post The New D&D Book Is Called "Ghosts of Saltmarsh" [UPDATED!]
    I suspect it's more like a very small number of posters making a lot of noise... (Quite frankly, there is good reason FR overtook Greyhawk in popularity). That's what happens when you place practically every video game in FR. And I saw more FR novels than nearly any other setting, except maybe Dragonlance. And that setting went downhill after Dragons of Summer Flame. Demetrios1453 and Parmandur : I didn't read any of the monster lore because as I stated, they were useless to me as I have my own lore for my own setting. And I figured they were FR focused since EVERY other book released has been (adventures minus Strahd, SCAG). Giving them names of Greyhawk characters really means nothing. So I made a mistake, but like I said, I didn't read the lore because it's rather useless to me. It's good to know it isn't FR focused, though.

Monday, 28th January, 2019

  • 08:20 PM - flametitan mentioned Parmandur in post These Are DDB's Most Viewed D&D Adventures
    On a related note, has Ravnica killed Eberron and Planescape and stolen their stuff? The guilds look like a mix between factions and dragonmarked houses, huge metropolis with planar gateways, magi-tech, etc. What is there left to make Eberron and Planescape special? To add on to what Parmandur said, Ravnica as a setting has no planar elements; what happens is that Ravnica seems to be a popular meeting place for planeswalkers, the primary cast of Magic's storyline. Planeswalkers cannot take anyone else with them, and there's currently no other way to hop planes without a planeswalker (with the exception of one device the antagonist stole in a whole other world). Planescape, by contrast, is all about the planes. Now, theoretically, most of what planescape has to offer can be covered in a Manual of the Planes type book; however, such a generic manual of the planes would lack the "character" of the setting. This character is primarily based on the foundational principle that belief can cause actual change, and the resulting conflicts that it brews. The Blood war continues because both sides believe that their outlook on reality is correct, and because the those who haven't taken a side believe it better for the war to continue than for either side to win. The gods are in a ne...

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 isn’t pulling out all kinds of the classic, shallow, obnoxious Anti-Magic blocks and adversarial, endless army of thieves stealing spellbooks moves. Assuming you aren’t 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 aren’t 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...


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Monday, 27th May, 2019

  • 07:54 AM - Hussar quoted Parmandur in post What proportion of the population are adventurers?
    At the risk of taking the topic entirely too seriously, from the WotC website: "The City of Splendors is certainly the greatest of the Sword Coast cities and perhaps the greatest cities on the face of the world. It’s home to as many as two million people, though an accurate census is all but impossible since so many come and go, visiting the open city to trade and otherwise seek fame and fortune." https://dnd.wizards.com/dungeons-and-dragons/what-is-dnd/locations/waterdeep Feeding people in Waterdeep is done through magic: big, honking Druidic magic. Heh. It really depends on which sources you want to read. :D FRCS pegs it at about 150 000 ish. In any case, 2 million is a ludicrous number for a city that size. I mean, the inside of the walls are less than 5 miles by 2 miles. 2 hundred thousand people per square mile? That's a bit much. :D
  • 05:53 AM - Immortal Sun quoted Parmandur in post What proportion of the population are adventurers?
    Sounds like a good rule of thumb, so about 1 in 20,000. That would give a huge city like Waterdeep with 2 million people about 100 adventurers total. With the major factions headquartered there, like the Harper's and Force Grey, that sounds about right for traditional D&D Sword & Sorcery shenanigans. I think there's some error in his math considering that a number of things we now call "jobs" are things that were, even IRL, part of the stuff "adventurers" did. I mean, think about locating ancient ruins of lost civilizations. We did that IRL. There were hired mercenaries yes, but there were also anthropologists, botanists, archaeologists, IRL professions that might translate into the "wizard" or "cleric" members of the fantasy party. There's still a fairly sizable market for mercenaries in the modern world, especially outside stable Western nations as well. Consider also the people who went off after the gold rush, or the oil rush, or the land rush. A stable, industrious, mod...
  • 03:06 AM - gyor quoted Parmandur in post If WotC is outsourcing official 5E material to 3PP, What is WotC working on?
    Interesting: in the event of a DoD book like GoS (It'd seem to be a good candidate eventually), I wouldn't necessarily bet on it being explicitly in the FR: they might revert it to generic, and put the Realmsian stuff in a sidebar of suggestions. I've been reading GoS the past couple of days, and it us pretty cool. The Saltmarsh town & region chapter is pretty well-rooted in Greyhawk, and I've noticed Easter Egg references to other adventures. In particular, cults if Elemental Evil come up a few times, and there is a reference to Zuggtmoy currently being trapped in the Temple of Elemental Evil. This may indicate that they might have more Greyhawk adventure plans in the works. Thing is Desert of Desolation shaped the south eastern realms massively. When Old Empires came out it had to deal with the Bakar Empire and this huge desert that wasn't originally in Ed Greenwoods Forgotten Realms. This in turn lead to a radical shift in Mulhorand and Unther and possibly Chessenta from Ed's original ...

Sunday, 26th May, 2019

  • 11:38 PM - gyor quoted Parmandur in post If WotC is outsourcing official 5E material to 3PP, What is WotC working on?
    My understanding is that it was written and published originally to be 1E "setting generic," hence the use of a Deities & Demigods mishmash. It was the reprint that was designated as a FR book, as it coincided with the original publishing push. True, but then it was partially rewritten for the realms which is why they make it clear that there were alot of planar immigrantion to Bakar to explain all the Gods not seen else where.
  • 06:22 PM - Kurotowa quoted Parmandur in post Another Look at the D&D Essentials Kit
    Interesting interview with Nathan Stewart here, going into the origins of and purpose for the Essentials Set, and how they are currently focusing on figuring out a better way to on board new players: https://www.forbes.com/2009/04/14/trappist-business-lessons-leadership-management-mepkin1.html I think you meant to think this story, not a 10 year old story about Trappist Monks.

Friday, 24th May, 2019

  • 06:43 PM - CapnZapp quoted Parmandur in post State of the mystic
    Being better at a suboptimal choice (going nova) is not a power boost. Admittedly, it may make playing a Wizard well in standard play marginally more difficult.Thank you for undermining your credibility amongst those who would otherwise heed your assertion. And thank you for no longer standing by the statement I quoted, the statement that forced me to correct an obvious mistake. Meanwhile, being able to choose when and where to spend your energies is an obvious upgrade for the rest of us.
  • 06:11 PM - CapnZapp quoted Parmandur in post State of the mystic
    Different /= significant per se. Significance in actual play is a different thing. Also, Wizards don't want to nova, as that can get them killed assuming standard gameplay is in action.Now you're just rambling. It's possible spell points adds no power if "standard gameplay" is equal to Parmandur's special snowflake rules" and if so, I couldn't know anything about it. Meanwhile, if you take the average campaign and just swap out slots for points, you will find that to be a significant power upgrade, regardless of what you think WotC has promised you. ...DMG system is perfectly in balance, and can be plugged or unplugged from the game with no effect. You have likely misread something. I cannot remember WotC ever claiming this. Even if they have, it is definitely not so. The collorary is: don't allow spell points unless you know what you're doing - the switch is not a small or inconsequential one.
  • 04:41 PM - CapnZapp quoted Parmandur in post State of the mystic
    All the spell point Wizard can do with the points is cast the same Wizard spells. While there might be some efficiencies to be gained from gaming the numbers, they are not significantly different from slots.You keep repeating the company line. I keep telling you, no, the ability to choose the shape of your "pyramid" is a significant power upgrade. Allowing spell points is a real nova enabler. Guess there isn't more to add.
  • 03:55 PM - Paul Farquhar quoted Parmandur in post Another Look at the D&D Essentials Kit
    At Target, the D&D product is just with the board games. They have more produce than board games, though Target has invested in beign the go-to board game store for place without an actual hobby shop. Large Tesco's stock some board games, but only a tiny fraction of what you would find in a toy shop. And toy shops tend not to stock "adult" games either - book shops seem to be the only regular high street shops that do.
  • 03:22 PM - Paul Farquhar quoted Parmandur in post Another Look at the D&D Essentials Kit
    Google suggests that Tesco is fairly similar to Target? Most Tesco's are convenience stores and supermarkets. They do have large stores with a wide range of goods, but not so wide as to stock and D&D products. I suspect that even the biggest are small compared to US stores.
  • 09:12 AM - CapnZapp quoted Parmandur in post State of the mystic
    Wizards are already incredibly flexible.What is that supposed to mean? If you mean the wealth of different spells you can choose, yes that makes them flexible, but it also has nothing to do with the matter at hand. If you mean spell points isn't inherently much more flexible than spell slots, given everything else stays the same, you're plain mistaken.
  • 04:51 AM - vecna00 quoted Parmandur in post The Final Announcement from The Descent Live Stream: Eberron Hardcover
    I'd wagwr the "Major AF" announcement is likely a media announcement, like Baldur's Gate 3, a cartoon show or the Paramount movie. Maybe the product details for the Eberron hardcover, and maybe a similar PDF test (Dark Sun?). My money is on a setting PDF, quite possibly the Planescape release that we've been theorizing. It doesn't require much work...except all of those factions! The pessimist in my thinks it'll just be the Eberron hardcover announcement. The wildly optimistic dreamer in me thinks they'll just release a base PDF for all of the old settings, including that much-anticipated Jakandor setting! Hey, it's a good dream to have!
  • 03:12 AM - pukunui quoted Parmandur in post Adventurer's League's Sets Saltmarsh & Dreams of the Red Wizards set In Turmish
    As the crow flies, Turmish is actually still pretty far off from the Old Empires.It's notably closer than the Sword Coast, and is connected to them via the Sea of Fallen Stars at least.

Thursday, 23rd May, 2019

  • 11:10 PM - gyor quoted Parmandur in post The Final Announcement from The Descent Live Stream: Eberron Hardcover
    Unsurprising, but good to see. The real news is we will get more info over the Summer.
  • 11:05 PM - gyor quoted Parmandur in post If WotC is outsourcing official 5E material to 3PP, What is WotC working on?
    My bet for next Spring is something along the lines of Ghosts of Saltmarsh, but with Desert of Desolation: wilderness rules and generation tables for desert life, maybe an Egyptian themed starting town set in the Old Empires region with suggestions for other worlds. Dunno if any other old adventures would fit in, but seems a good candidate for this sort of treatment. I did some research and this is what I found for Setting neutral desert adventures: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Day_of_Al'Akbar Day of Al'Akbar. It's a little more Arabian flavoured then Egyptian/Mesopotamian flavoured however. https://index.rpg.net/display-entry.phtml?articleid=30671 The Book with No End. This one actually fits well with Desert of Desolation, you are on a Quest for a magic book called the Book with No End that is so powerful it's turned a lush Jungle into a Desert, that would fit as an Imaskari artifact very well. Lastly Old Empires 2e source book has a bunch of small adventures in it. Plus ad...
  • 10:56 PM - Retreater quoted Parmandur in post State of the mystic
    The Psi-points have an exact mathematical relationship with slots: if they recovered on a short rest, it would be more like the Warlock, and even more overpowered than it is already. I can understand that. But the disciplines are nowhere as good as 1st level wizard spells.
  • 10:17 PM - CapnZapp quoted Parmandur in post State of the mystic
    As such, the DMG system is perfectly in balance, and can be plugged or unplugged from the game with no effect. No, that's not the case. Being allowed to use spell points means a huge increase in flexibility (for wizards, sorcerers have it built-in) and thus in power.
  • 08:29 PM - Yaarel quoted Parmandur in post State of the mystic
    The Mystic was already using the spell points system from the DMG. That's what people didn't like. And the Psion tests so far were using spell slots as power points, essentially. Because in 5E, the only difference is surface math. Yeah, unfortunately, it is hard to like the 5e spell point system in the DMG. The 5e design made spell values wonky: 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 11, 13. Using these values feels too convoluted. A simpler point system would be, for a full caster. Your total spell points equal your caster level x2. The cost of each spell equals its spell level. You refresh your spell points after each long or short rest. I suspect this is balanced enough. But it only works upto spell level 5. Spell levels 6 to 8 need to be rationed out separately. And possibly spell level 9 separately again.

Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019

  • 10:38 PM - Retreater quoted Parmandur in post 2019 WotC D&D Releases
    Do they watch the show? The audience for the show is highly likely to be interested in buying this, and they have a significant viewership. I know I'm only one guy, but I'm one guy who plays in five groups. None of my groups have ever heard of this ... show? (Some of them watch Critical Role, if it's like that.)
  • 09:31 PM - doctorbadwolf quoted Parmandur in post 2019 WotC D&D Releases
    Oh, yeah, this is going to be big. WotC is hyping other books partly because this will work fine by itself. Yep. The AqInc fans, especially the Shadow Council (C Team fans for those who don't watch), will buy out the first printing by themselves. The general dnd audience will buy a decent amount once there is a better understanding of what these franchises and franchise roles add to the game, and that it expands on FR in new and interesting ways.


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