View Profile: DEFCON 1 - Morrus' Unofficial Tabletop RPG News
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Friday, 17th May, 2019, 06:30 PM
    Oh, of course not. Nor should they. But for a class whose formatting is based on the Warlocks, I think it is much, much better that each of the seven subclasses has their own list of "invocations" to select from, rather than the Warlock's where there's one single list and all the patrons select from it. I'd rather have a 20+ page document where all the selections for a particular subclass...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Friday, 17th May, 2019, 04:28 PM
    Yes, if the player declares an action that has an uncertain outcome and a meaningful consequence for failure. In this example, including what you added, we have two action declarations: (1) The barbarian wants to go to Ye Ole Magick Shoppe to buy some thunderwave scrolls for the wizard and (2) The wizard's player wants to retroactively give the barbarian a reason to take the aforementioned action...
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Thursday, 16th May, 2019, 02:09 PM
    In all seriousness, I actually do not care if/when they publish it, as I believe KibbleTasty's Alternate Artificer (currently on v1.7) already is a better version than what WotC has continued on with and it is all I will ever want or need in an Artificer. The seven subclasses it has for it cover conceivable archetype I might ever want, and my Eberron campaigns have already benefited from its...
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Thursday, 16th May, 2019, 12:34 PM
    I think it would be in very bad taste for me to publish it, rather than let WotC do it.
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 15th May, 2019, 05:18 PM
    Man, I thought my preference for stupid names was well-known at this point. I'm firing my publicist. But just check out my short-form scenarios for examples of this (plus presentation in general).
    51 replies | 1288 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 15th May, 2019, 04:43 PM
    I have a penchant for silly names in my games, both as a player and DM, because I find them funny and, because others find them funny, they are more memorable. Presenting NPC names this way is good for retention. I struggle to remember NPCs with the usual fantasy RPG names, but you don't forget even minor NPCs like the Marguul bugbear gladiator, Dikpik the Unsolicited, who showed up without...
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Wednesday, 15th May, 2019, 03:04 PM
    Yeah, it was Mearls who went off on thinking the Bonus action mechanic was not serving its proper purpose, but then later on determined it was probably just using it for Two Weapon Fighting that was causing issues. If anyone doesn't like having your off-hand attack take your Bonus action, I'm pretty sure he said there shouldn't be any issue with wrapping the off-hand attack into the Attack...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 14th May, 2019, 08:18 PM
    I have no idea what your goal is with this. And yet here we are saying it. Except determine what their characters do, think, and say.
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 14th May, 2019, 07:19 PM
    No more than anyone should expect me to perfectly execute the approach I use and discuss here on enworld, especially after three or more Jamesons. But I know what I'm supposed to be doing per the rules and I try. A lot of words to say "People can play how they want." Which is and has never been in dispute. But if you want to say the rules support players establishing fiction outside their...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 14th May, 2019, 05:08 PM
    What is the Arcana check for? I don't see an action declaration from the wizard in your breakdown. That's not the DM's problem. It's up to the players to play their characters effectively. My car doesn't use gasoline. That is the smart play. :)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Monday, 13th May, 2019, 08:06 PM
    I can't really speak for the social contracts at anyone's table but my own. From the perspective of the rules though, that expectation does not hold up well in my view since the outcome of all action declarations are decided by the DM who is empowered to use the rules to inform his or her decision but is never beholden to them. (This necessarily includes something as simple as taking rope out of...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Monday, 13th May, 2019, 07:53 PM
    A D&D 5e DM who wants to act in the framework the rules provide in my view narrates the result of the adventurers' action without establishing anything new about what the player described as wanting the character to do. This is the effective limit for the DM in this regard, since he or she cannot determine what the character does, thinks, or says. One trick I do in an effort to avoid overstepping...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Monday, 13th May, 2019, 06:57 PM
    Right. My point being that nobody can really say that a social contract applies to all tables and, given how it will vary, it's not something that helps show an approach is a breach of the social contract. It might be for some and not for others. I think from the perspective of the rules the DM gets to say what the outcome of every action declaration is. Some might not like this or outsource some...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Monday, 13th May, 2019, 05:42 PM
    "Social contract" exists as what the DMG calls "table rules" which are not the rules of the game. These will vary from table to table. I have already given good reasons, based on what the rules describe as the DM's role, why the DM may decide that the player's action declaration to take the rope out of the character's backpack may fail. Those reasons might be that the DM needs to mediate...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Monday, 13th May, 2019, 04:57 PM
    But who decides that there is an "automatic outcome" to casting a fireball or seeking help from the PC's temple? The DM, always.
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Monday, 13th May, 2019, 03:47 PM
    They may be listed on the character sheet, but as the outcome of all action declarations are decided upon by the DM, I don't think where they are listed says anything about the player controlling the fiction in this regard.
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Monday, 13th May, 2019, 02:35 PM
    I prefer maps and tokens and use Roll20 even for in-person games. But one thing I learned about TotM is that the standard play loop is even more important and the DM is well-served by internalizing that process and using it. The standard play loop is (1) The DM describes the environment, (2) The players describe what they want to do, and (3) The DM narrates the results of the adventurers's...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Monday, 13th May, 2019, 02:34 AM
    Why? Does what the PC think have to be a truth about the game world or be permitted to create NPCs during play (over which the player has NO authority by the rules) in order for you to feel the player has "total authority over what the PC thinks and feels?" Why does this make the PC a "relative stranger" to the game world? The player can choose to use that knowledge to inform how he or she...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Sunday, 12th May, 2019, 06:47 PM
    I think Celebrim establishes a good line here: The player is free to draw upon hard-won knowledge to inform how he or she has the character act. The limit is when the player is not acting in good faith and has, as you suggest above, read the module and presumably didn't tell anyone. I think a player not being forthcoming about this many people would consider rude or worse. But sometimes my...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Sunday, 12th May, 2019, 06:04 PM
    I don't find any contradiction here that isn't created by the player. It is the player that has to yield since it is the player stating something about the world (e.g. "earth elementals are vulnerable to thunder damage"), which is under the purview of the DM. The obvious solution to me is for the player not to do that (nor declare the guard is Frances, an old friend) and, again, to verify one's...
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Sunday, 12th May, 2019, 03:37 PM
    The invocation would be missing a clause if "up to ten feet away from you" was meant to describe the location of the creature. It'd be telling you to push the creature but now doesn't tell you how far it got pushed. Does the DM really think the game designers would write the invocation so poorly if that was the case? If there was meant to be a positional aspect to the target creature, it...
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Sunday, 12th May, 2019, 01:14 PM
    I personally wouldn't consider a trench to be three-quarters cover, only half. To get three-quarters cover you need to be behind things like arrow-slits-- where almost your entire body can remain covered at all times while you fire out from behind it. Being in a trench is the same as being behind a short wall-- your entire upper body becomes uncovered when you poke your head and arms up to...
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Sunday, 12th May, 2019, 01:04 PM
    One of my players ran the playtest Mystic in my last Curse of Strahd campaign, and that class essentially uses spell points. And the same thing happened with her... she couldn't help but just throw out Fireball after Fireball, and then found herself without spell points for large swathes of time. It definitely made the class feel different than the other spellcasters... but you need to have a...
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Sunday, 12th May, 2019, 12:49 PM
    No, you are correct. Repelling Blast modifies your Eldritch Blast. Your Eldritch Blast does all its normal functions, and then in addition, you can push people back since you modified it with Repelling Blast.
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Sunday, 12th May, 2019, 06:01 AM
    I don't understand what you're saying here in relation to my specific question that you quoted. If the DM does not care that the PC went to buy scrolls presumably good in a fight against earth elementals with no explanation whatsover, then why would someone care if they do so after saying "earth elementals are vulnerable to thunder" or words to that effect? Does something meaningful change about...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Saturday, 11th May, 2019, 11:27 PM
    If you're fine with the them going to buy the scrolls without explanation, why care with an explanation? The DM is just there to adjudicate the action of buying the scrolls, nothing more. A player might say "Hey, everyone, earth elementals are vulnerable to thunder damage." But there's nothing there for the DM to do. I don't say "player knowledge = character knowledge" though. I'm saying...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Saturday, 11th May, 2019, 09:20 PM
    The player's intent is clear; the character's is not. They don't have to be the same thing since player and character are separate, right? The player could know that earth elementals are vulnerable to thunder damage, but never say anything about the character's knowledge and just describe what he or she wants to do: "I want to go to Ye Olde Magick Shoppe to buy some scrolls of thunderwave." Just...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Friday, 10th May, 2019, 06:25 PM
    Yeah. To be clear, I actually prefer the players have some additional measure of control of the fiction outside of their characters and frequently build on offers the players make during play, especially when it comes to my regular players. But I also know that this is not supported by the rules of D&D 5e and so I can't honestly make the argument that it is when we're discussing what is or isn't...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Friday, 10th May, 2019, 04:29 PM
    I think they would inform but not constrain the DM's narration of the outcome of the adventurers' outcome. This may seem like splitting hairs, but we have to take any rule into the context of the idea that the rules serve the DM, not the other way around. In this case, it may well be likely that the DM always says the character can (for example) get an audience with a noble or help from his or...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Friday, 10th May, 2019, 02:42 AM
    Fair play, since I provided my own diagnosis for you as you say. However, I think it's more simple: I say what I do in my games e.g. players don't ask to make checks. Someone responds to ask why or to criticize my choice (fair enough), often someone who already knows the answer, perhaps adding that he or she does that and his or her game works fine. I say something like, "I do it because there is...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Friday, 10th May, 2019, 02:21 AM
    I'm not sure what you're saying here - the truth is a deflection? In the context of the game, it actually doesn't matter to the DM in my view. My assumption in this example is that the player is making an offer in good faith and with full knowledge of the rules of the game and the table rules. If, however, the player is under some misapprehension that, by the rules of this game or perhaps...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Friday, 10th May, 2019, 12:39 AM
    Again (and again and again...), me saying what I do as being something the rules books say to do isn't a judgment on how you play. But in a discussion about DMing approaches, especially one as meandering as some of the threads of late, it may be appropriate for any number of reasons to observe that someone's approach is clearly taken from some other game when it's obvious there is no support for...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Friday, 10th May, 2019, 12:17 AM
    Yeah, so you just keep saying things I'm not arguing against as if I am and, because I feel obliged to respond to someone who responds to me, I feel like I'm wasting my time now. Probably best to just ignore each other.
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 9th May, 2019, 11:29 PM
    Already addressed upthread. And there are approaches that DMs take that simply cannot be derived from the plain English words on the pages of the D&D 5e rules books. Some certainly could if you were reading a rules book from some other game. When that happens, expect me to point it out, especially if the poster is reporting dissatisfaction with the game experience.
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 9th May, 2019, 08:42 PM
    All your position means is that we're at an impasse and there's nothing left to discuss on this front. I won't be changing what I call the rules. I mean in a kind of postmodern sense, sure, anything can mean anything. But in a pragmatic sense, only some interpretations will actually be valid in that they actually work reliably in achieving the intended goal. If you're saying that some...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 9th May, 2019, 07:57 PM
    And who among us old-timers haven't been in games like that?! I sure as heck have.
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 9th May, 2019, 07:34 PM
    Yeah, we can play all kinds of word games if you want. But I don't think that's very interesting or helpful. More word games. It looks more to me that you're reading into my words an intent I do not have.
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 9th May, 2019, 07:29 PM
    I agree. I think it may have been this thread where I mentioned that even if the DM "gives" the player the freedom to react however he or she likes after the DM establishes how the character feels about something, the DM still established a constraint in which the player may feel compelled to take into account when deciding what to do. As Chaosmancer points out, the rest of the table might be...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 9th May, 2019, 07:11 PM
    Sure, but all of the organizations, locations, and NPCs are under the full control of the DM during play as are the outcomes of all action declarations by the player related to the background features above, since you still have to declare an action to seek assistance from the priests of your temple, get messages to your criminal contact, secure an audience with a noble, and so on. This does not...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 9th May, 2019, 07:06 PM
    I would say anything that isn't specifically called out as a rules variant (e.g., encumbrance or different resting options) or the like is a rule. This includes the stuff that doesn't seem very "crunchy," such as the section on "How to Play" or what the player gets to determine about the character. I think to parse it into various other words like "guidelines" or the like doesn't really help and...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 9th May, 2019, 03:45 PM
    There's a difference between before play and during play with regard to equipment. Yes, you get to pick your equipment before play during character creation, just like you get to pick your ability scores (if you're not rolling them), race, class, and so on. During play, the results of your action declarations are firmly in the hands of the DM. People other than player characters are non-player...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 9th May, 2019, 02:23 PM
    I'm not trying to convince you of anything. And it's likely that more people understand my points than don't. Just a handful of folks are vocal in their objections and it's always the same posters in multiple threads. That strikes me as a clash of personalities more than anything else.
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 9th May, 2019, 01:35 AM
    What's not solid about it? Always right in that this is what the character thinks, anyway, since the rules say the player determines what the character thinks. Those thoughts themselves might be wrong. The player need not necessarily believe that Frances exists. The player could be portraying a character who is sometimes confused about what is or isn't real, a flaw that when so...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 8th May, 2019, 08:49 PM
    I truly think that is what your objection is all about - memories of a war in which you participated that ended long ago. It can be seen in a lot of your posts and it appears to color your reception of the viewpoints and positions of others. It's in your often backhanded or faint praise of D&D 5e, compared to the edition of the game you clearly prefer (and frankly so do I). I'm not a ghost...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 8th May, 2019, 08:06 PM
    Here we're just discussing how to discuss or arguing about how to argue and you know my feelings about that.
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 8th May, 2019, 07:51 PM
    Thanks for the kind words, but if that's your interpretation of my position, I'm afraid it will have to continue to bother you. I won't stop saying that I do what I do because the rules say to do that or suggest to people having issues that they try what the rules say to see if it corrects the problem.
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 8th May, 2019, 07:22 PM
    As far as D&D 5e is concerned, that's the definition. Other games might have other definitions. That the game works to varying degrees whether a DM follows the rules or not is something I do not dispute, especially since I've seen that be the case (even if it some cases it wasn't my cup of tea). But that comes at the risk of arriving at a game experience that is not intended or in some...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 8th May, 2019, 07:08 PM
    Sorry, dude, I'm the only authority here on what I care about. Please kindly leave off on this track. "Roleplaying is, literally, the act of playing out a role. In this case, it's you as a player determining how your character thinks, acts, and talks." (PHB, p. 185) Taken together with "How to Play," we see very clearly who gets to say what according to the rules. The DM's authority...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 8th May, 2019, 06:12 PM
    Please do not ascribe to me claims I am not making. As for showing where others are not following the rules and perhaps not achieving a desirable result, that's fair game as far as I am concerned. It's advice for correcting a problem the poster reports. They can take it or leave it. Further, me saying what I do is because I'm just following what the books say is not a judgment on what other...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 8th May, 2019, 05:59 PM
    I would say your impression is mistaken and perhaps, based on your previous posts in this and other threads, greatly influenced by your experience in the edition wars and related discussions of the past. My position is that the rules are like the directions of a recipe. If you don't follow them, you may get a different result than the recipe intended. Whether that's good or bad is a matter of...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 8th May, 2019, 05:14 PM
    And I'm saying it's absolutely true that you can work out what is or isn't permitted with the existing rules. The DM narrates the results of the adventurers' actions, always. If the player says he or she wants to have the character reach into the backpack and grab a rope, by the rules, the DM gets to say how that works out. As I said before, the DM may decide the character lacks the remaining...
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Wednesday, 8th May, 2019, 02:41 PM
    Presumably you've seen WotC's Plane Shift: Amonkhet article that goes into 5E detail on their Not Egypt Magic: The Gathering setting, yes? That setting article has a bunch of info and mechanics for Not Egyptian races for humans, avian humanoids, jackal humanoids, minotaurs, and snake humanoids. If you want some additional inspiration for a fantasy Not Egypt area, it might not be a bad article...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 8th May, 2019, 04:01 AM
    What answer are you looking for? I stated what the rules have to say on the matter and have addressed the specific example in a reply to Elfcrusher upthread. You're welcome to read it. I hope you don't count me among them. If you do, then you've misunderstood (and now misstated) my position. Yes, the player determines what the character thinks and does, and particular knowledge is...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 8th May, 2019, 01:32 AM
    Another poster who stated that he or she deviated from the rules told me to call what he or she does "house rules" before. I refused. So I'm afraid you'll have to find someone else to push back on in this regard. This isn't me advocating slavish devotion to RAW for its own sake. The endless polling probably didn't hurt. There you go again parsing the rules and organizing them in...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 8th May, 2019, 01:02 AM
    It's all rules as I see it, and you're free to ignore the rules you don't want to use. Again, just be aware that this may impact the game experience negatively and require adjustment. There isn't much value in picking and choosing which are rules and which are not in my view. Accept them as one big bag of rules that are instructing you on how to play the game, then pare them down if you wish (or...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 8th May, 2019, 12:07 AM
    Yes, yes, heard it all before. This is a rule, but this isn't because I choose not to follow it, so it couldn't be a rule. That sounds like fluff, so ignore it or reflavor it however you want. And on and on. And yep, you can do all that and it's fine. Until it isn't. The D&D 4e DMG doesn't apply to D&D 5e. The D&D 3.Xe DMG doesn't apply to D&D 4e. And so on. Best to ignore other games when...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 7th May, 2019, 11:19 PM
    Rules are the things you find in the rules books. Unless you ignore them in which case they are just "advice." Or if you're an experienced DM, you don't bother reading anything anyway so none of it matters, especially not the DMG because what could you possibly learn by reading that? I don't hold a position that we must follow the rules, only that the rules inform us how the game is...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 7th May, 2019, 10:46 PM
    If you must put it in Forgotten Realms, the adventure says it is in the foothills nortwest of Thundertree and was once a secret stronghold of the Cult of the Dragon. It sunk when Mount Hotenow erupted.
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 7th May, 2019, 10:43 PM
    Yeah man, probably most of us have done that. Some likely still do it and don't have a problem with it. It's a habit people pick up from other DMs or from other games.
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 7th May, 2019, 10:39 PM
    I think it's quite possible to discern what is written in the book and what is not. I don't think it's a good idea to muddle that in a discussion about the rules. Of course as to whether what is written in the book is valued by the group will vary. That's a separate issue in my mind anyway. Yep, this is the argument I used in support of this sort of thing in D&D 4e where "Yes, and..." was...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 7th May, 2019, 09:46 PM
    Per the DMG, after the DM settles on what the campaign is about, the players work with the DM on how their characters' backgrounds and histories tie into the campaign. The DM is encouraged to say yes - if he or she can. If he or she can't, the DM is told to suggest alterations to the character's story so it better fits the world or figure out a way to weave the first threads of the campaign into...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 7th May, 2019, 08:45 PM
    Yes! I've seen that a lot, too. Probably did it myself back in the day. Modules as I recall often presented information this way ahead of the boxed text (if I remember correctly). Make some rolls to determine what everyone knows and sees, then describe the environment accordingly.
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 7th May, 2019, 08:39 PM
    It shows. Reading and doing is my approach to the goal. Plus arguing on enworld.
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 7th May, 2019, 08:30 PM
    Ugh, no choice, just a random number generator to determine the starting position for the fight. DM could have just rolled on a chart, put your characters where he or she wanted, and asked for initiative. The Dex saves and possibly passive Perception check is just a thin veneer that some choice you made during character creation or advancement mattered to the situation. And who knows if going...
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 7th May, 2019, 08:07 PM
    This reminds me of the DMs who out of nowhere go "Uhhhh, give me a.... Perception check..." without an action declaration by the player preceding the request. It's like the DM is asking permission of the dice to describe the environment. Super common in my experience.
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 7th May, 2019, 07:53 PM
    If by "improv" you mean the player engaging in what the rules define as the DM's role, that's not really interpreting and filling in - it's changing the rules. Which is fine, but let's call it what it is. As for the shorthand on personal characteristics (which is what they're called as a whole), I've seen the acronym BIFTs used by a number of people.
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 7th May, 2019, 07:29 PM
    So, change the rules and you're good to go? Hardly controversial, right?
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 7th May, 2019, 07:26 PM
    Right. The player should have no expectation, at least not by the rules of the game, that the offer must be accepted. Generally speaking, my experience has been that the limits of a game that makes liberal use of "Yes, and..." tend to exist as an agreement between the players and DM, explicit or implied, about what kinds of things the player can establish and when. Often this is for color...
    569 replies | 19229 view(s)
    1 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 7th May, 2019, 05:02 PM
    I'd probably go with LMoP or Sunless Citadel from TftYP as a one-shot then reassess from there.
    9 replies | 355 view(s)
    0 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 7th May, 2019, 04:14 PM
    The boundaries seem pretty clear to me as far as the rules of the game are concerned, but in any practical sense who may establish what is going to vary quite a bit from table to table. While I take a hard line on what the rules say, at the table I may be perfectly willing to accept Frances is an old friend of a character if the player makes that offer. It depends on what I think about that in...
    569 replies | 19229 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 7th May, 2019, 02:35 PM
    I think that's a pretty big reach to try and get to a position that the player is empowered to add new elements to the environment. Nothing about the above statement leads me to believe it's an exception to the standard adjudication process either.
    569 replies | 19229 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 7th May, 2019, 05:07 AM
    From what I can tell of Chaosmancer's reply to my post, he or she is asserting that two positions I hold are in conflict (one from this thread and one from another). Unfortunately, it just seems that the positions are misunderstood and in some sense conflated. As for equipment, I would say most groups as a matter of practicality permit the player to establish during play where the equipment on...
    569 replies | 19229 view(s)
    0 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 7th May, 2019, 03:54 AM
    I'm not telling the player how his or her character thinks. As I've said several times, the player is welcome to have the character think and say the guard is his or her old friend. But the DM is under no obligation to make that true nor does the DM need to say that the character is delusional. A DM might narrate the result of the adventurer's action with "The guard doesn't respond to being...
    569 replies | 19229 view(s)
    0 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Monday, 6th May, 2019, 10:20 PM
    That sounds like an argument FOR "pretty elaborate traps" to me.
    1672 replies | 58999 view(s)
    1 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Monday, 6th May, 2019, 09:26 PM
    If there is no telegraphing and the DM doesn't use passive checks, then what you propose is the smart play provided there are no disincentives for doing so. I've certainly observed games and played in them where that was the case. It's less common nowadays in my experience, but does come up in games where the DM doesn't like passive checks and with DMs for whom telegraphing is a foreign concept.
    1672 replies | 58999 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Monday, 6th May, 2019, 09:19 PM
    I don't know about "immersion" which I consider a laughable buzzword that gets thrown around like "metagaming," but depending on how a trap is presented and adjudicated by the DM, it can basically be just random number generation affected by whatever choices the player made during character creation. Whether anyone finds that fun is up to them.
    1672 replies | 58999 view(s)
    2 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Monday, 6th May, 2019, 08:38 PM
    I think the finding of the trap is the least interesting part about them. It's figuring out how to bypass or disable them that is the real challenge.
    1672 replies | 58999 view(s)
    2 XP
  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Sunday, 5th May, 2019, 11:54 PM
    Your double-skill is no worse than your advantage on check or your increased proficiency bonus table when each of them are taken individually. But when you merge all three together into one system... yes it's going to be rather ridiculous. If the reasoning for these house rules is to just widen the gap between people who can do things and people who can't... at a certain point it doesn't...
    27 replies | 1070 view(s)
    1 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Sunday, 5th May, 2019, 08:11 PM
    Challenge has to do with the decisions the player makes though. While a character may be facing a fictional challenge, it is the player who is being tasked with making decisions that impact the outcome of the challenge. Thus, it is always the player who is being challenged in any meaningful fashion. The character's abilities are secondary, used only to resolve the outcome as appropriate to the...
    569 replies | 19229 view(s)
    0 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Sunday, 5th May, 2019, 08:17 AM
    I don't think the game imagines that the players or DM are playing in bad faith. That is a social problem, not a problem of adjudication or the rules from which that process is derived. It looks to me that you are conflating different people's positions and even topics again and trying to drag @Celebrim into whatever crusade you appear to be on. But you said in this very thread that...
    569 replies | 19229 view(s)
    0 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Friday, 3rd May, 2019, 11:47 PM
    I find the easiest thing to do and the least prone to a mismatch in expectations is that the DM calls for the ability check and the player adds the skill proficiency that he or she thinks best aligns with his or her description of what the character is doing. This also means the DM need only work about 6 things (the ability scores) rather than all of the skill proficiencies. This method assumes...
    171 replies | 7181 view(s)
    2 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Friday, 3rd May, 2019, 07:28 PM
    That's a common way of playing and, for many, it works just fine. But it can lead to dissatisfaction with D&D 5e as a result since it is at odds with the game's design and you end up with the situations you describe. When someone isn't happy with the system, it's almost always this issue in my experience, being a fundamental process of play. It's basically playing this game as if it's some other...
    171 replies | 7181 view(s)
    2 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Friday, 3rd May, 2019, 05:15 PM
    Your conclusions are supported by the rules. The DM is the only one who can call for checks anyway (not the players) and he or she does that only if the outcome of the task described by the player has an uncertain outcome and a meaningful consequence for failure. If one or both of those elements are not in place, there is no roll - the task succeeds or fails and is narrated by the DM accordingly.
    171 replies | 7181 view(s)
    1 XP
  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Friday, 3rd May, 2019, 04:56 PM
    When I was putting together a different campaign that was intended to only use the Core Four classes, I was reworking the Fighter to only using the Battle Master and its maneuvers. And I also reworked the list a bit, adding some, editing some, as well as adapting some of the non-Core Four class features that I wasn't going to use into maneuvers as well (like Reckless Attack got merged into Lunge...
    1 replies | 191 view(s)
    1 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Friday, 3rd May, 2019, 03:07 PM
    I can't speak to what you need. I can only say what the rules say. During play, players describe what they want to do. That's all they may do. If your conclusion is that you can refer to the guard as Frances and that the DM is under no obligation to change the world to suit your offer, then you have reached the correct conclusion as far as the rules are concerned. But honestly it's not...
    569 replies | 19229 view(s)
    0 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Friday, 3rd May, 2019, 05:59 AM
    Door Jams. Within five or ten feet of certain distinguishable doorways in this section of the dungeon are pressure plates in the stone floor. When a weight of at least 100 pounds presses down on the pressure plate, a great slab of iron* drops downward from the ceiling with a grating shriek and seals the doorway. The slab remains in place until there is less than 100 pounds of weight upon the...
    60 replies | 2052 view(s)
    1 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 2nd May, 2019, 09:24 PM
    I think this is more like Festivus, given all the Airing of Grievances. Here's hoping subsequent posts and threads are smoother.
    1672 replies | 58999 view(s)
    1 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 2nd May, 2019, 06:48 PM
    A DM failing to adequately describe the environment and present the basic scope of options invites questions from players. A DM failing to repeat the play loop and describe the environment again as appropriate (reminding of the major points, plus anything that has changed or been revealed by previous action), including in combat challenges, does the same. A player failing to adequately...
    569 replies | 19229 view(s)
    0 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 2nd May, 2019, 05:43 PM
    Now here's the part that bakes some folks' noodles: If we're playing Dungeon World, ask all the questions you want. Even some of the moves are questions. That's all good. The game expects it and so do I. But if we're playing D&D 5e, keep it in the form of an action declaration please! I'm not going to engage in the mini-game of players asking 20 questions before they take an action. The thing...
    569 replies | 19229 view(s)
    2 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 2nd May, 2019, 04:31 PM
    What level PCs? Forge of Fury isn't specifically a dragon's lair, but there's a black dragon's lair in it. It's not clear to me you could get through it in 5 to 6 hours start to finish though. You'd have to maybe start the PCs in the middle of the dungeon or something like that to pull it off or cut out non-essential areas. Maybe the PCs start with some kind of tenuous alliance with the orcs...
    16 replies | 614 view(s)
    0 XP
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Thursday, 21st February, 2019

  • 08:17 PM - oreofox mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Pages From The Upcoming Nautical D&D Book!
    ...e. I admit that. It's rather close to dandwiki with some of the content people put on there. But there have been some really good gems. Has been that way since they opened it up in 2016 (I put my first product up on there nearly 3 years ago to the date). Not many people I come across use the fan-made stuff. Opening more settings would give the chance of some gems popping up based in those settings. Also, what do you need to play Forgotten Realms in 5e that wasn't already available from the past 30-40 years? Why focus on Greyhawk, and not mention one of the other settings. Greyhawk and FR both have basically the same races. But why not open up Ansalon and Dragonlance? There are races, classes, subclasses, monsters, and other things rather unique to that setting that are not available using the generic Forgotten Realms products. What about Spelljammer? What about Dark Sun? I see so many people pining for that setting (I don't see the appeal, but apparently a large number love it). DEFCON 1 : 5 years ago, they just barely ended the playtest, and wouldn't truly release 5e for another 6ish months. But yes, not long after release, people were clamoring for a non-adventure 5e book. It took just over 2 years for them to release something that wasn't an adventure: Volo's Guide to Monsters. It gave DMs new monsters, and players a few new racial options. And people loved it. The next year they released the first fully player-oriented book: Xanathar's Guide to Everything. And people ate that book up. A year before Volo's, they released the forgettable and disappointing Sword Coast Adventurer's Guide. Now, thanks to Curse of Strahd, people are clamoring for them to release something for the other settings. And when CoS was released, and opened on the dmsguild, it was flooded with Ravenloft and horror-centric products, and it dwindled when Yawning Portal was released. Then came generic stuff, and when ToA was released, it was flooded with jungle-themed products. Release a Dragonl...

Saturday, 26th January, 2019

  • 05:05 PM - DM Dave1 mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Shield Mastery Feat
    ...ires the use of an Attack action. Since you can ONLY take Attack actions on your turn, you cannot Shove a Creature outside of your turn, i.e. as an OA reaction. You are reading "melee attack" as "Attack action", they are two distinct, although similar, things. Again, if it doesn't make sense to follow the RAW, just change it for your game. No harm done if you want to play it that way. I literally said sword swings and Shoves "both use the Attack Action, both are melee attacks, and both are able to be used as a Reaction". I did not read or say Attack Action = melee attack. My point: if a sword swing uses the Attack Action, is a melee attack, and can be used with a Reaction; AND a shove has the exact same 3 characteristics as the sword swing that I just outlined; then both can be used as a Reaction for an Opportunity Attack. I think my interpretation is RAW, you think your interpretation is RAW. Both think the other is wrong. But perhaps we're actually both right because, like @DEFCON 1 says above: Rulings not Rules... only I'm righter because I like to give my players more "Yes"es than "No"s. :p

Friday, 7th December, 2018


Thursday, 22nd November, 2018


Thursday, 25th October, 2018

  • 07:13 AM - Li Shenron mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Passive Perception better than Active Perception?
    I'm not sure what kind of situation you're imagining. I'm only going to consult a character's passive score if they've told me they're looking for something, so I can't imagine a situation where they hit the DC to find whatever it is they're looking for with their passive score but then I'm asking them to roll a check instead. Maybe an example would help. (Also for DEFCON 1) Rather than an example, a general principle: I use Passive Perception against other's rolls, but Perception checks against static DCs. There is then no need to sweat each time to decide what to use. The only decision I typically need to make is, when rolling, whether the player rolls in the open or I roll for her secretly.

Monday, 27th August, 2018


Tuesday, 10th July, 2018

  • 05:13 PM - Sadras mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Player asked for a favour: MC Barbarian-Warlock
    Was the character a Barb first or a Warlock first? By your title, it looks like barb first. At what level did the MC start? So we have just started a new campaign at 3rd. They have had one session so far and he asked me if he could not change one of the levels to Warlock. Generally I am easy within the first two sessions on changing up a few things. 1) Will this player also want to cast spells or cantrips while raging? Nope. 2) How, if at all, would this affect the advantage the player gains on Strength checks and saves while raging? Not affected. @DEFCON 1 - I pretty much agree with you on this. I have had a look at the both the barbarian and the hexblade class. There is no real mechanical benefit I foresee that would be an issue at my table. I personally think the player is building his character incorrectly, said as much to him. There are better ways to make the concept through Background, Feats, Skills, Bonds, Flaws and Ideals - including a makeshift Patron Feat of sorts if need be. Failing that a combination of class features from the two classes. As I see it the high Charisma is actually hindering him (points wise), he won't be casting offensive spells so he doesn't need the high DC and as for the Hexblade Curse minor healing it is not worth it if he only sees the character advancing to level 3. Leaving the ability points in Strength actually works better since he intends to advance in Barbarian and Hexblade Curse works fine with that. I think he is happy I said yes, but muddled that I provided so many possibly better options for...
  • 03:44 PM - Hawk Diesel mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Player asked for a favour: MC Barbarian-Warlock
    I would have no problem with this. As DEFCON 1 said, every ability is like any other. There are already tons of ways for other classes to substitute in their prefered modifier for attack and damage. Additionally, this multiclass slows down the spellcasting and invocation progression, as well as prevent him from getting the barbarian capstone while also slowing his access to brutal critical. The sacrifices seem to balance with the gains. What I would be curious about are: 1) Will this player also want to cast spells or canteips while raging? 2) How, if at all, would this affect the advantage the player gains on Strength checks and saves while raging?

Saturday, 7th July, 2018

  • 11:02 PM - Jester David mentioned DEFCON 1 in post THIS Is The Pathfinder Playtest Rulebook!
    I heard Jester mentioned on the Friday fireside chat episode :). As far as the possible alt covers for the core books, I'm probably down with picking this up, mainly for the errata printing compared to my first edition printing books. Yup. That was my tweet at roughly the 20 minute mark, quoting a DEFCON 1 comment.

Tuesday, 10th April, 2018

  • 08:10 PM - Hawk Diesel mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Curse of Strahd and Strongholds
    Thanks everyone, I'm really digging the feedback. I'll admit, I hadn't really thought about this until a flash of thought this morning. I backed Matt's kickstarter and was wondering how I might be able to use it for the current campaign I'm running. DEFCON 1 that is a good point about there not being much around Barovia. But I don't think they would want to make a "home" of Vallaki what with that mayor being so persistent about people being happy and participating in those parades and fests. Of course, I also have no idea how this group is going to proceed or react. I am changing the script for some things regarding Lady Wachter and her relationship to the Baron and Izek based on some suggests I've found on these boards, so who knows who will survive that event. But the Blue Water Inn already makes a pretty nice base of operations, even if not exactly a player controlled stronghold. Krezk would be more reasonable, but the players may stumble into Van Richten's Tower by then, which has stronghold written all over it. Also, I know that Death House is like... super cursed. But I like to reward my players for creativity. I won't say it's impossible to break the curse. And I don't even know if they would want to claim the house as theirs. Bu...

Wednesday, 14th February, 2018

  • 12:01 AM - Kinematics mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Revised Disadvantage/Advantage
    OK, this came out of brainstorming on @DEFCON 1's post about exhaustion, and the trouble with the impact of disadvantage on all ability checks at the first level of exhaustion. However I'm finding the idea more generally attractive, and would like comment on it. The basic idea is to change the interpretation of how disadvantage affects a check. You still roll two dice, but instead of taking the lowest result and being done right there, you take both results, and apply them in order of lowest to highest. If both results were failures, or both success, then nothing really changes. You still just fail or succeed as normal. However when one is a failure, and the other a success, then things get a bit interesting. Namely, you have to take the consequences of the failure before you can get the results of the success. If the consequences of failure prevent the success from being possible at all (eg: attempting to jump over a pit trap; attempting to hit an enemy), then it's just a straight failure. But if the consequences of fail...

Friday, 26th January, 2018

  • 09:29 PM - DM Dave1 mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Short and Long Rest limited Actions
    Action Surge is physically taxing, using it to take basically an extra turn costs you 5 hitpoints as you excessively push yourself. Every time you use it after the first the cost doubles, second time 10 hitpoints, third time 20 hitpoints, etc etc. This increased cost resets AFTER you take a short rest, regain your strength and let your body recover. To allow for "Rule of Cool" situations the cost of an Action Surge is paid at the end of your turn, thus allowing you to chose to make that final effort to finish your foe before accepting the consequences. Then, under the rational of doing away with short or long rest recharging, the fighter would get to use Second Wind in the same way to offset the cost of the additional Action Surges... but what is the cost of re-using Second Wind again and again? I'm sure you could come up with something, but it all seems like too much futzing for not enough gain, IMHO - to paraphrase @DEFCON 1's post above. That said, if an alternative Action Surge rule works for your table, give it a whirl. Let us know how it goes!

Friday, 15th December, 2017

  • 03:38 PM - Blue mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Legendary Actions
    DEFCON 1 is entirely correct in the rules as written. And that legendary actions are to help with the action economy of multiple PCs vs. a solo opponent and with a single PC only doing one is appropriate for the combat. However I believe that the intent is that all are used every round and that is built into the Challenge rating / XP value. If the creature will not have a chance to do so, I would lower the challenge and XP.

Thursday, 21st September, 2017

  • 10:00 PM - lowkey13 mentioned DEFCON 1 in post D&D Reader App Coming This Fall? [UPDATED]
    I felt harassed. It's not up to a vote. He's been blocked. Sent from my iPhone using EN World mobile app Fair enough! Well, let's see. Given that I know the posting history of DEFCON 1 (which is long and fair), and given I've seen what you've just done- "I'm not a moderator. My general rule, for myself, is to engage with people I enjoy engaging with, ignore commenters I don't enjoy, and block those commenters that persistently aggravate me." Bye!

Saturday, 16th September, 2017

  • 04:48 PM - Sacrosanct mentioned DEFCON 1 in post [SPOILERS] Enhancing Tomb of Annihilation
    I'm not treating you like freak. You can stop with that nonsense right now. I'm pointing out how every time something like this comes up, you make some sweeping negative statement that is only true if a lot of assumptions are met. In this case, the only way it becomes as easy as you say is if the party is pretty much nothing but clerics and paladins who spend all of their spell slots on those types of spells. and that is most certainly not true of most gaming groups. So when you make a statement like "...you definitely can't use the base game without tweaks.", that is simply not a universal true statement. You do this stuff all the time, trying to say your arguments are somehow a universal truth. This is exactly what I was talking about in that other thread yesterday DEFCON 1. This isn't you just stating your opinion of your personal style. This is you telling everyone else what can or can't be done as if there is no debate, and it's simply not true. Not to mention, if said players do spend their slots on spells like that, it means less slots they have during other combat encounters and other non combat encounters. To be frank, this reminds me of the discussions about how wizards in 3e make every other class obsolete. Those arguments rely on an assumption that the wizard will have every spell available and every slot available all the time, and that simply isn't true how the game is actually played. And finally, I wish you's stop making claims about something you don't even have the book on yet, and telling us who do have the book and have played it that we're wrong. Chult is tier 1. Says so right in the book. Tier 2 is dwellers of the forbidden city.

Saturday, 12th August, 2017

  • 04:38 PM - CapnZapp mentioned DEFCON 1 in post 5e druids/wildshape/combat forms/improvements
    DEFCON 1: actually my ideal for beast selection is the same as for spell selection: that work is done to shore up the weaker choices to make them palatable (or "viable"). If everybody chooses the Brown Bear, or everybody chooses Fireball, that makes for a less varied game. Just as I'm advocating that spells like Witch Bolt gets an official upgrade, I can wish for magic items that might work on the lion but not the wolf, the tiger but not the elk. Examples taken specifically because there are guides out there saying things like: Lion: Pounce is easily outdone by the Dire Wolf's bite, and the Dire Wolf does more damage. The Lion has two attacks, but without Multiattack that doesn't do anything. Dire Wolf is strictly better. Tiger: Nearly identical to the Lion, but with Darkvision and a tiny bit more damage. Dire Wolf is still better. Giant Elk: The Elk's Charge ability is nice, and has a solid DC to resist, but its biggest appeal is the ridiculous damage on its hooves. 4d8+4...

Thursday, 15th June, 2017

  • 04:56 AM - jayoungr mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Why is Hoard of the Dragon Queen such a bad adventure?
    Hi, I stumbled across this old thread from a google search. I am a first time DM, and this module will be my first campaign. I am interested in reading your blog posts mentioned here, and was also wondering if you had any tips for this adventure specifically for first time DM's. The links to these blog posts are no good. Do they still exist? The original article was reposted on this board, here: http://www.enworld.org/forum/showthread.php?373438-7-Legitimate-Beefs-with-Hoard-of-the-Dragon-Queen&p=6422605&viewfull=1#post6422605 And this post later in the thread has links to the follow-up "13 Tips" article on the Wayback Machine: http://www.enworld.org/forum/showthread.php?373438-7-Legitimate-Beefs-with-Hoard-of-the-Dragon-Queen/page4&p=6730156&viewfull=1#post6730156 Good luck! The "Enhancing" thread mentioned by @DEFCON 1 above is always open for questions.

Wednesday, 10th May, 2017

  • 05:02 AM - pukunui mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Curse of Strahd help
    DEFCON 1: I don't know that I want to cheat quite like that. They're going to go to the castle as soon as they get the sword, so I'm not in a rush to force them there. I've been meaning to have Arrigal attempt to steal the holy symbol off the party (they got it from the Vistani treasure wagon, and I figured Arrigal would've gone off to Strahd to report the PCs' activities, only to be told off by Strahd, who recognized his description of the prize they took from the wagon, and ordered to retrieve it). This is probably the first chance he'll really get, as this is the first time the PCs have spent the night out in the open.

Thursday, 23rd March, 2017

  • 07:00 PM - pukunui mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Curse of Strahd help
    ... and instead of the hag Baba Zelenna, the villain there became a banshee witch named Patrina Velikovna). And then Chris Perkins took the stuff both Expedition and Fair Barovia and reincorporated it again-- for instance taking the name Lysaga and creating Baba Lysaga from it, and taking Patrina and her brother Kasimir's story from Fair Barovia! (which matches the story in CoS of he and the elves stoning his sister so that Strahd couldn't have her and it turning her into a banshee) but moving her from the hill to Strahd's crypt instead ...Actually, Patrina comes from the original I6 module: "Patrina was a gypsy elf maiden who, having learned in early life a great deal of the black arts, was nearly a match for Strahd's powers. She felt a great bond with Strahd and desired to become one of his wives. Strahd, ever willing, agreed, but before the final draining of spirit from her soul could take place, her own people stoned her to death in mercy. Strahd demanded, and got, the body. She then be...

Monday, 20th February, 2017

  • 06:39 PM - lowkey13 mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Warlock, Hex, and Short Rests: The Bag of Rats Problem
    The problem here is that now instead of a bag of rats, the warlock is incentivized to go punch a villager into unconsciousness. Or just slit their throat. It pushes the character towards finding an easy low-risk combat scenario, which is arguably even weirder than the bag of rats. The hardest part of a fully satisfying solution to this issue for me is that allowing all of the mechanics that lead to a bag of rats, which on their own are all reasonable and seem to be RAI and RAW how the warlock is balanced, leads to some kind of weird behavior. Building on what @DEFCON 1 wrote, why not just use your first bonus action in your first combat to cast it? If you think that hex, as intended, requires the Warlock to punch random villagers every morning and immediately take a short rest, then I think there's a very fundamental divide in how you are playing the Warlock (which isn't wrong- it's a choice) as compared to how others might play it. FWIW, I happen to think that hex is situationally useful, but I have found many better uses for the limited spell slots of a Warlock that don't eat up his concentration for the entire day. Because you can't stack concentration. (Although from a strictly comedy perspective, I have no issue with Draak, the Villager Puncher)


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Friday, 17th May, 2019

  • 05:23 PM - Stalker0 quoted DEFCON 1 in post Are you satisfied enough with the Artificer to publish it?
    In all seriousness, I actually do not care if/when they publish it, as I believe KibbleTasty's Alternate Artificer (currently on v1.7) already is a better version than what WotC has continued on with and it is all I will ever want or need in an Artificer. The seven subclasses it has for it cover conceivable archetype I might ever want, and my Eberron campaigns have already benefited from its existence. Unless your only option is playing Adventurer's League and thus HAVE to use the WotC version... I don't know why anyone would go with theirs over KibbleTasty's. I took a look at KTs. I can see the appeal, there is a lot of good stuff there. But on the other hand....the class by itself probably takes up as many pages as all of the core classes (seriously, its huge). So its good, but WOTC would never spend that much page space on a single class.
  • 03:56 PM - TwoSix quoted DEFCON 1 in post Are you satisfied enough with the Artificer to publish it?
    In all seriousness, I actually do not care if/when they publish it, as I believe KibbleTasty's Alternate Artificer (currently on v1.7) already is a better version than what WotC has continued on with and it is all I will ever want or need in an Artificer. The seven subclasses it has for it cover conceivable archetype I might ever want, and my Eberron campaigns have already benefited from its existence. Unless your only option is playing Adventurer's League and thus HAVE to use the WotC version... I don't know why anyone would go with theirs over KibbleTasty's. Yea, agreed. The WotC Artificer is fine, it's not like I would turn it away if someone wanted to play it, but I'd show them Kibbletasty's first and recommend it as the superior option.

Thursday, 16th May, 2019

  • 02:17 PM - Aldarc quoted DEFCON 1 in post New Unearthed Arcana: Revised Artificer
    They obviously believe a +1d6 damage magic weapon in the hands of the artificer themself is not as powerful as a +1 to-hit / +1d4 damage magic weapon in the hands of another PC. Especially considering the artificer is more likely to lose concentration on it when they are the ones in melee taking the hits.Thankfully though the Artificer has proficiency in Constitution saves. The Artificer gives the Wizard some fairly strong options for multiclassing. So if this is close to the final version, I will be interested in seeing what the theorycrafters draft up for some Artificer/Wizard combos.
  • 12:36 PM - gyor quoted DEFCON 1 in post Are you satisfied enough with the Artificer to publish it?
    I think it would be in very bad taste for me to publish it, rather than let WotC do it. I meant for Wotc to publish smart Alec.

Wednesday, 15th May, 2019

  • 06:49 PM - trentonjoe quoted DEFCON 1 in post New Unearthed Arcana: Revised Artificer
    Good? Sure. Overpowered? Not when you compare it to other personal damage-increasing spells for melee attacks at 1st level like Hex, Hunter's Mark etc. But maybe that's just me. I mean , the flip side is that Elemental Weapon isn't exactly a "must have" 3rd level spell.....
  • 05:35 PM - Sword of Spirit quoted DEFCON 1 in post New Unearthed Arcana: Revised Artificer
    They obviously believe a +1d6 damage magic weapon in the hands of the artificer themself is not as powerful as a +1 to-hit / +1d4 damage magic weapon in the hands of another PC. Especially considering the artificer is more likely to lose concentration on it when they are the ones in melee taking the hits. Seems like they may have forgotten that bard (or magic initiate, if artificer is allowed like it should be) can snag this for non-artificers.

Tuesday, 14th May, 2019

  • 06:15 PM - Charlaquin quoted DEFCON 1 in post Bethesda Comments On Accusations Of Plagiarizing D&D Adventure
    Well, that's the cynic in me. ;) When companies apologize I don't see it as someone within the company trying make anything better... I see it as them doing it just because they "have to" to get people off their backs, especially considering many of the people who clamor for it are not in any way connected to the situation and are just online trying to act as moral arbiters and shame people into "acting better". Of course they’re just doing it because they “have to” to get people off their backs. All the more reason for people to get on their backs to pressure them to do it, cause they won’t otherwise.
  • 04:28 PM - Morrus quoted DEFCON 1 in post Bethesda Comments On Accusations Of Plagiarizing D&D Adventure
    And that's cause most people don't actually care. As soon as the company says "Oh, we're very sorry this occurred, we didn't mean to upset anyone", people go "Oh, okay, good!" and then go on with their lives as though nothing ever happened, never thinking about it ever again. Because the action and the apology has literally NO impact on them either way. They just wanted the apology so that they feel good about themselves like they're this great person who demanded accountability! LOL. I think that might be more of an insight into your personal philosophies than it is into the people involved! :)
  • 03:27 PM - Morrus quoted DEFCON 1 in post Bethesda Comments On Accusations Of Plagiarizing D&D Adventure
    Well, that's the cynic in me. ;) When companies apologize I don't see it as someone within the company trying make anything better... I see it as them doing it just because they "have to" to get people off their backs Sometimes people make genuine apologies and do try to do better. And I also don't think for one single second that anyone who thinks someone in Bethesda should apologize for this will actually result in them doing anything about it if Bethesda doesn't. No one's going to *not* buy the next Elder Scrolls game if Bethesda doesn't apologize (and I wouldn't believe that person in the slightest if they came here on the boards and tried to claim that they wouldn't). Well, make your mind up! Either they're cynically apologising because they have to, or they don't have to because it makes no difference. It can't be both things! :) (Well, in this case they're not; or at least haven't yet).
  • 01:38 PM - Morrus quoted DEFCON 1 in post Bethesda Comments On Accusations Of Plagiarizing D&D Adventure
    Why should anyone (other than the original authors) expect an "apology"? What's the point? Do any of us actually care or have been impacted by this in any way? Because it helps build trust. Many people do make ethical decisions over who they do business with based on their conduct and, when that conduct is problematic, how they remedy the situation. An apology isn't just a feel-good thing; it's a promise to make things better.

Tuesday, 30th April, 2019

  • 02:56 PM - Celebrim quoted DEFCON 1 in post How far is too far when describing what a PC senses and feels?
    From what you've said, you appear to me to have much higher stakes in how you play your D&D. I don't know that I have higher stakes, but I have higher aims. One thing you'll hear me repeatedly emphasize on the forums is that though role-playing is merely a game and it's purpose is merely leisure and entertainment, yet at the same time it is also an art form. The stakes are everyone enjoys the game or not, and if everyone enjoys the game you've succeeded. But that is a low aim, and we ought to be - we the sort of participants in the hobby that care enough about it to be posting in the forums on EnWorld 1000's of times, designing our own systems and games, and often as not on these boards publishing them for the enjoyment of others - aiming higher. Just as a movie maker or a novelist aims to create great work within the constraints of their budget and genre, so we too ought to be aiming to create great work. That isn't to say that I think you at all times need to be aiming to create...

Wednesday, 24th April, 2019

  • 02:21 PM - BMaC quoted DEFCON 1 in post Heroes of Baldur's Gate is a D&D Adventure From Bioware's Baldur's Gate Designer
    This'll be weird for a lot of players who pick this up when they realize the campaign is meant to take place around the Time of Troubles. If it's a year after Sarevok, we're talking 1369 or so, quite possibly making it coterminous with BGII - Shadows of Amn, and a full 120+ years before the so-called "current" year in FR history. You can pretty much ignore the chronology if you want.

Friday, 19th April, 2019

  • 04:09 PM - doctorbadwolf quoted DEFCON 1 in post Would you rather we get more setting neutral content than adventures?
    If a book is primarily fluff, story, and plothooks... you don't need a "5E" version of it because the only stuff that would be edition specific would be monsters. And we've already gotten 3 books worth of monsters so its not like they have skimped out on us there. But a "focused release" book or product like Chronos96 was suggesting they wanted (a la Frostfell, Sandstorm, or Stormwrack) is rather unnecessary if everything in those l is edition-neutral and applicable to any kind of adventure or campaign prep. I think that's the point of WotC's decision-making process on how they are putting their current books together. They are releasing books that have stuff for players & DMs that aren't just carbon copies of past books they've already made because they want to make these books applicable to a larger amount of people, including those who already own all those older books. I mean, do we really need a new "Manual of the Planes" that just describes and details the same exact planes that th...
  • 01:49 AM - MNblockhead quoted DEFCON 1 in post How to adjudicate coin counting, gathering, and item valuations - how much time taken, what skills used?
    When I re-did my skill list for my campaigns, I added 'Commerce' as a skill. Now proficient characters can add that to any INT, WIS or CHA checks I call for if it has anything to do with collection, appraisal, haggling or any other financial query. Hmmm... is this a new skill on everyone's sheet or is this a feat someone can take. If a skill, wouldn't it be associated with a specific attribute, i.e. Intelligence. So you would call for an Intelligence (Commerce) check? Seems to make more sense as a feat. Anyone with this feat can add their proficiency bonus to any commerce-related skill check, such as check called for when appraising items or bargaining to buy or sell something. But it seems like most players wouldn't want to spend a feat on it. Instead, I would probably make it a feature of a Background. Someone with a "Merchant" or "Fence" background can use this "Commerce" ability. How, exactly, is it used in your game? What does your skill list look like and how does it oper...

Thursday, 18th April, 2019

  • 08:57 PM - Chronos96 quoted DEFCON 1 in post Would you rather we get more setting neutral content than adventures?
    What is it about these 3rd and 4th edition books they have already done that you feel are not usable for 5th edition? Where did I ever say that the old material wasn't useable? Nothing. The point has nothing to do with the usability of the old material. I'm saying if they were to make a 5th ed manual of the planes or if they were to do something like Frostfell, Sandstorm, Stromwrack, etc. again I would rather they consolidate all the material into one release. To clarify further when there's only material for one book they should make one book when it warrants two books as in the case of the Waterdeep adventures and to a lesser extent Tyranny of Dragons they should make two books. I personally feel that something like the Manual of the planes book would benefit from two volumes. For example volume 1 could be the Feywild/ Shadowfell and the Elemental Planes along with the positive and negative planes. Volume 2 would be the Astral Sea and the Nine Hells along with the twelve outer r...
  • 08:24 PM - doctorbadwolf quoted DEFCON 1 in post Would you rather we get more setting neutral content than adventures?
    What is it about these 3rd and 4th edition books they have already done that you feel are not usable for 5th edition? For a lot of people, the idea of buying books from a version to the game they aren’t going to play, so that they can then do the work of translating its contents into the game they are going to play, is just untenable. That said, I’ve found that translating 4e monsters to 5e, with very little change other than a handy table for what numbers are normal at a given tier of play in 5e, leads to more interesting 5e combats. Magic items are harder in a lot of cases, but once you have a knack for reading what “X squares” or “Y Damage” translate to in 5e, it’s not too bad. For me, I don’t trust the balance of anything from 3e, on any level. Mechanically/in terms of balance, my view is that 3/.5e dnd is mostly garbage. So, all 3e books are good for, for me, is lore and basic concept inspiration. Either way, stuff like playable satyrs and dryads, elementalist (not wild magi...

Friday, 12th April, 2019

  • 03:59 PM - castlewise quoted DEFCON 1 in post 'Cure Wounds' is D&D's Most Popular Spell
    I wonder if the charts are taking into account the fact that almost all tieflings get the Hellish Rebuke spell as part of its racial features? If spells that are given out "for free" like that as part of racial features are getting counted, that could explain why-- since I'm sure a large proportion of warlocks are probably tieflings. That would make sense. And Hex isn't quite as important to the class as say, Hunter's Mark for rangers.

Friday, 29th March, 2019

  • 11:45 PM - Aebir-Toril quoted DEFCON 1 in post A Look At The D&D Acquisitions Inc. Book
    He probably said AI was canon so that people would get annoyed by it and finally stop worrying about Forgotten Realms canon, which is what they've been trying to get people to do now for years. ;) Oh Mystra, by the time Chris Perkins is done with the Forgotten Realms, these will be no place untouched by whimsy. The rise of robot beholders, Verdan, and the Greataxe Bob has begun!
  • 04:10 PM - Blue quoted DEFCON 1 in post 2d10 for Skill Checks
    It's also not your responsibility to show up in the thread and try and "fix my math"... but you chose to do it anyway. ;) Umm, you posted something on a forum. That is inplicitly inviting comments and discussion. You also stated your goal. I was commenting that your math and your goal did not match. I did so in a helpful way and provided the numbers for people to check. This is useful not just for you, but for others reading your post and considering doing a similar change. Someone else posted an example and I said why I thought it wasn't the right numbers to choose so everyone could talk about a more appropriate one. Both of those seem not just correct behavior on a discussion board, but positively good neighborly. If you don't want people commenting on what you post, then perhaps the correct action is not to post it in a public forum in the first place.
  • 03:59 PM - dnd4vr quoted DEFCON 1 in post 2d10 for Skill Checks
    If people want go over the math and see how 2d10 compares to 1d20 for all manner of DCs and rolls for just a general discussion of whether it could work for more people or the average table... hey, go nuts! Don't worry, the "Dissertation on the Comparative Distributions of Skill Checks Systems: An Examination of the Merits and Flaws of 2d10 versus d20" will be coming if I have the time and inclination to write it over the weekend. ;)


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