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  • UngeheuerLich's Avatar
    Today, 03:45 PM
    I spontaneously would say no. I think it would be as reasonable to cast a spel as it is to attack the source of fear if there is no other way out. I might just allow a saving throw to remember the exact words. Might ve an int saving throw. I could also see a charisma saving throw to get yourself together good enough to cast such a spell. I am always in favour of allowing saving throws if...
    7 replies | 162 view(s)
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  • UngeheuerLich's Avatar
    Today, 03:26 PM
    The game is more fun if you have both types of combatants on both sides of the screen. Also, when my group found out that if they only use ranged attacks they are not taking damage, suddenly everyone was front line... And there was no one able to defend the important person who was lying on the ground soon to be stabbed.
    123 replies | 3863 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Today, 01:42 AM
    edition warrior you remain
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
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  • darkbard's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:09 PM
    Among other things, Mark of Healing describes how "You can master and perform rituals in the restoration category and the Remove Affliction ritual as if you had the Ritual Caster feat." Since Remove Affliction *is* a ritual in the Restoration category, what purpose does this verbiage serve?
    162 replies | 64044 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Yesterday, 02:22 AM
    Should reinvigorating call be "can't use it on them again until the subject/target finishes a short or long rest"?
    492 replies | 12283 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Yesterday, 02:08 AM
    I like hearing design thoughts on house builds ... I found the Variant Fighter very interesting
    492 replies | 12283 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Yesterday, 01:52 AM
    Agreed nice for Warlord I approve though I think Battle Ready could also be just any fighter. So those who opt for Strength get their favored secondary as initiative (and its barely more than a tweak) Yeh I think both of these are minimal fuss modifications, I even like the Battlemaster name being a pretty fair synonym of the "War" "Lord"
    492 replies | 12283 view(s)
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  • darkbard's Avatar
    Tuesday, 13th November, 2018, 06:06 PM
    For me, it is that very "any" which opens up the second reading. I agree that, RAI, one single ally is probably the correct ruling. But RAW? Hard to say with such screwy wording!
    162 replies | 64044 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Tuesday, 13th November, 2018, 03:35 AM
    If you do have the offline character builder or find it somehow there is a tool for customizing it that I really like using -called CBLoader
    4 replies | 202 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Tuesday, 13th November, 2018, 03:00 AM
    A couple of ideas I had seem like they could be used by Warlord/Fighter variants One was a low level feature that helps out the Strength based character called Battle ready For most the beginning of a battle is something they have to react to and its reflexes that take over but for you its a fulfillment of your expectations and your plans. You may pick and alternative stat (instead of...
    492 replies | 12283 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Tuesday, 13th November, 2018, 01:44 AM
    Quick response - love your goals. updating the concept - good there were options that seemed to never make it to the table with the 4e Warlord (in spite of it being already very role versatile and having a lot of support, I think actually battlefield control could have been better and having some striker functionality? intrigues me) . Teamwork also vital (this is missing from the feel of...
    492 replies | 12283 view(s)
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  • UngeheuerLich's Avatar
    Monday, 12th November, 2018, 09:07 PM
    I accept your argumentation why you personally think that it feels wrong to you. And you think it is bad design. I can follow your argumentation fine and I do partially agree. But for all we know it was a design choice.
    69 replies | 3374 view(s)
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  • Ryujin's Avatar
    Monday, 12th November, 2018, 07:53 PM
    TMZ reporting that Stan Lee has died. Hoping they're wrong :(
    297 replies | 18270 view(s)
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  • darkbard's Avatar
    Monday, 12th November, 2018, 02:20 PM
    I suggest solving your problem by turning the solution over to your players. Take a page from 4E's handbook and present this as a Skill Challenge wherein PCs need to achieve X number of successes before 3 failures; each PC declares an action that makes use of a skill or ability as it fits the fiction; you apply new pressure on the group after each roll, successful or not. You may be surprised how...
    12 replies | 1124 view(s)
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  • UngeheuerLich's Avatar
    Monday, 12th November, 2018, 02:02 PM
    Or you can accept that your argumentation also adds up to: I would have liked it differently. That said, it would not have hurt to make 20 auto save because a 1 on an attack roll is also always a miss. DC 23 is also very harsh and I could see epic boons being used to "fix" your problem.
    69 replies | 3374 view(s)
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  • darkbard's Avatar
    Monday, 12th November, 2018, 06:33 AM
    Zealous Sanction (Cleric E7): "The first time any ally hits the target before the end of your next turn, that ally can spend a healing surge." Is this a one time effect, i.e., only on the first hit can that single ally spend a healing surge, or does this apply to each first hit by each ally before EoYNT?
    162 replies | 64044 view(s)
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  • UngeheuerLich's Avatar
    Sunday, 11th November, 2018, 09:47 PM
    Be careful. Even if this does not break the game which it won't, you run into the same design flaw as 3e and 4e. Scaling in hp as well as AC makes your advancement quadratically instead of linearly. You have to chise either. In 2nd edition you dirst scaled with hp and later you only added very little but gained a lot of magic items to enhance your AC and so on. In 5e they went the route of...
    120 replies | 4240 view(s)
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  • darkbard's Avatar
    Sunday, 11th November, 2018, 03:22 PM
    The system outlined by you and further defined by MoutonRustique is the guideline for creating characters above level 1 with level-appropriate gear. The charts in the DMG lay out a level-by-level progression, wherein as a party, the group acquires L+4, L+3, L+2, L+1 magic items and 2(L) mundane loot (where L = value of magic item of current level, so 360 for level 1, 520 for level 2, etc.)....
    4 replies | 180 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Sunday, 11th November, 2018, 03:01 PM
    I have a chart somewhere about that is a more complex Wealth by Level which Wrecan worked out and it had columns showing variation if you used things like inherent bonuses. Although technically even the most fully implemented inherent bonuses really just removes bland magic items from the table not necessarily anything else.
    4 replies | 180 view(s)
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  • UngeheuerLich's Avatar
    Sunday, 11th November, 2018, 08:32 AM
    Compare a fighter to the wizard casting birning hands. The wizard casts the spell and does 10 damage. The average fighter with some dex and some con bonus has a 50% chance to save for half. Even if he does not, he will usually survive except on an exceptional roll for the wizard. Lets say a 20% chance to kill. The fighter has a good attack bonus, probably +5 to hit, doing 1d8+5 damage....
    120 replies | 4240 view(s)
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  • darkbard's Avatar
    Sunday, 11th November, 2018, 02:53 AM
    This comparison helps greatly and is exactly what I was looking for. Thanks!
    162 replies | 64044 view(s)
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  • darkbard's Avatar
    Sunday, 11th November, 2018, 02:20 AM
    I like that! Such loot then occupies a liminal space between pure monetary value and a somewhat more limited (but situationally more valuable) version of a magic item.
    7 replies | 307 view(s)
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  • darkbard's Avatar
    Sunday, 11th November, 2018, 02:17 AM
    I know this was kinda the CharOp consensus, but I can also kinda see how the above proviso lends itself to both readings. I guess I'm looking for a definitive reason that rules out the alternate reading. Why wouldn't all MC daily healing options confer the full encounter power as a daily power? (I'm not challenging the more limited interpretation; I'm just trying to understand why the other is...
    162 replies | 64044 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Sunday, 11th November, 2018, 01:30 AM
    darkbard, sort-of following on from your post: If we assume that magic items are mechanical in some fashion (eg grant bonuses to checks), then once we allow that mechanics can extend beyond combat, we have a framework for making sense of "loot" in the way you describe. In 4e there're are also options for approaching bonuses a bit differently eg the signet of authority allows one reroll in a...
    7 replies | 307 view(s)
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  • UngeheuerLich's Avatar
    Saturday, 10th November, 2018, 10:04 PM
    No. But remembering that saving throws in 5e rather work as a duration mechanic instead of a prevention mechanic helps. It is just that a few spells are single save or die type and don't really fit into the system. Right now saving throws combine the 3e and the 4e approach. If you have a problem with a 20 on a saving throw not be an auto save, juat add it back in. And bedore you call it...
    69 replies | 3374 view(s)
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  • darkbard's Avatar
    Saturday, 10th November, 2018, 09:46 PM
    For MC Feats like Master of Stories, whose utility power is limited with the following proviso, "The aura’s healing benefit can be used only once per day": does this essentially turn the encounter power into a daily power and thus the healing can be invoked twice during the encounter but only during one encounter per day, or does the healing function one time and one time only per day? Is...
    162 replies | 64044 view(s)
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  • darkbard's Avatar
    Saturday, 10th November, 2018, 08:07 PM
    This, good sir, (inadvertently) solves a problem that has vexed me for ages regarding loot in D&D: of what use is nonmagical gear gear, like golden chalices, sparkling gemstone earrings, and jewelled swords, to PCs that would prevent them from simply converting said items to magic items (particularly in my 4E gaming, where the system assumes such)? The answer: loot is magic items. The princess's...
    7 replies | 307 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Saturday, 10th November, 2018, 12:58 AM
    Yes I can build Zorro that feels like Zorro at level 1 but put on a few levels and I can get all the stuff
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
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  • UngeheuerLich's Avatar
    Friday, 9th November, 2018, 08:15 PM
    I´d go with either transmutation or conjuration school and charlatan background. Instead of thief´s tools you use forgery kit and your school´s ability to make keys out of thin air or clay. You can use your charlatan´s abilities to infiltrate. You use your unssen servant and familiar to do interesting things. Transmuter´s stone is a great addition to any party and a great help for you. Being...
    21 replies | 641 view(s)
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  • darkbard's Avatar
    Friday, 9th November, 2018, 05:06 PM
    Great to see you here, Nausicaa! Though you had already faded from active participation on the WotC CharOp boards before I started posting regularly there (as darkwarlock), I found your previous posts and guides invaluable. Many thanks!
    44 replies | 123724 view(s)
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  • UngeheuerLich's Avatar
    Friday, 9th November, 2018, 05:04 PM
    Reading the Loxodon description I could see barkskin rewritten to match that of the natural armor trait. "If your armor would leave you with a lower AC you can chose to use AC 12+Constitution bonus. You can still use a shield." So it is nearly crystal clear that the AC 12+Con part is only used to replace the armor and nothing else. Even though I think it is not a good thing to take dexterity...
    138 replies | 5024 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Thursday, 8th November, 2018, 11:36 PM
    Shas is talking 1e as much as I can't tell...ie thief having a percentage to climb walls
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Thursday, 8th November, 2018, 11:18 PM
    But you can't have hits bouncing off armor..... Like they were misses... Cause that isn't a hit... Ask Shas
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Thursday, 8th November, 2018, 11:16 PM
    Or this actually because Smaug ran out of luck... Convenient for the hero?
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Thursday, 8th November, 2018, 02:04 PM
    well there are multiple fear responses you could get some freezing up and being in the way... so you might need some loud social move to make some of them move ;)
    12 replies | 363 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Thursday, 8th November, 2018, 10:24 AM
    This appears to assume, as I said in my post, that the PCs are strangers. What you describe may be an excellent approach for a novelist wanting to introduce his/her readers to his/her imaginary land (I'm currently 50 pages into a rereading of Dune - Frank Herbert is doing a lot of this). But if one of the players is playing a dwarf; or if any of the PCs is from one of the civilisations in...
    46 replies | 1422 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Thursday, 8th November, 2018, 03:37 AM
    I don't know - why would they? I suggested that the GM should probably follow the players lead, which the player sketched out in the OP and was seeking some feedback on. Whereas my recommendation would be to answer the question Does a game in which a half orc paladin of conquest seeks divinty by eating the hearts of coutatls, devas etc sound exciting?. Presumably the player thinks it is, or...
    14 replies | 554 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Thursday, 8th November, 2018, 03:30 AM
    The difference between (1) me, in the world, going to my place of work and saying hello to my colleagues, and (2) me, as a player, asking the GM to tell me where my place of work is, and what it looks like, and who my colleagues are, and what they are like, is huge! The second is very like having someone read me a book or tell me a (perhaps not super-gripping) story. But if the goal is...
    46 replies | 1422 view(s)
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  • Ryujin's Avatar
    Thursday, 8th November, 2018, 12:55 AM
    OK, I couldn't last 10 minutes watching "Riverdale", but "Chilling Adventures of Sabrina" wasn't bad. Some questionable camera effects that didn't reflect anything, but the storyline wasn't bad at all. The best thing, from my point of view, was how the production designers managed to reflect that nebulous late '50s/early '60s esthetic of the comics. They were so successful that when something...
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  • Ryujin's Avatar
    Thursday, 8th November, 2018, 12:48 AM
    Except that they were explicitly referred to as doctors. The situation was similar to a forward operations military medical unit, as depicted in the movie/TV show M.A.S.H., except that their base was mobile. Or like a hospital ship as HMY Britannia was designed to operate as, in time of war. Stitch people back together well enough that they don't die, so that they can live long enough to receive...
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Thursday, 8th November, 2018, 12:28 AM
    Very nice by the way!!!!
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 7th November, 2018, 10:41 PM
    No it wouldn't. The real world is something I live in and experience. My knowledge of it is intimate. It is not mediated to me through anyone's verbal narration of it. The most obvious way to emulate this in a RPG is for the players to stipulate elements of the setting as they need to. Not for the GM (or a 3rd party) to write up reams of fiction in advance of play. Providing a tool to...
    46 replies | 1422 view(s)
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  • UngeheuerLich's Avatar
    Wednesday, 7th November, 2018, 07:35 PM
    We introduced point blank range at 30 feet*. That alone was enough to balance melee and range and also helped the player likewise against enemy focus fire. *if you are more than 30ft away, you don´t benefit from attribute bonus to damage or sneak attack.
    123 replies | 3863 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Wednesday, 7th November, 2018, 03:10 PM
    Yes and we go with that rather heavily "defeated" can also mean fleeing the scene of battle. Or other power specific fiction which make sense.
    12 replies | 363 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 7th November, 2018, 02:41 PM
    Again, this is not my experience at all. When I started a Classic Traveller campaign, I rolled up the starting world in front of the players, after they had rolled up their PCs. We discussed how each of the PCs had got there - integrating the implict story resulting from PC gen (Traveller uses a lifepath system) with the implicit story of the world - and one of the players decided that this...
    46 replies | 1422 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 7th November, 2018, 02:35 PM
    My experience is closer to cmad1977's. Reading someone else's story about what happened in some imagined place at some imagined time doesn't help my immersion.
    46 replies | 1422 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 7th November, 2018, 02:03 PM
    What you've set out sounds fun to me! Why would the GM not just follow the player's lead?
    14 replies | 554 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 7th November, 2018, 09:09 AM
    As far as I know the god Dumathoin was first mentioned in DDG under the entry for Moradin, but nothing was said about him except that he is the "god of secrets under mountains". Vergadain and Dumathoin were written up by Roger E Moore in Dragon 58, as part of his "point of view" and demihuman god series. As far as I know this was the first appearance of Vergadain. This is reprinted as part of...
    2 replies | 198 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 7th November, 2018, 08:39 AM
    Continuing in my persona as the man from 15 months ago: This was interesting, both in general and because I'm trying to get myself into the mindset to GM Dungeon World next year. I don't know BitD outside of this thread and a few other posts about it, so my thinking/question will be framed in (what I take to be) DW-ish terms. And also BW-ish terms. It seems to me that this issue of...
    41 replies | 5167 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 7th November, 2018, 06:00 AM
    When this has come up in my game we've handled it in various ad hoc ways. Remember that the player can always choose that "dropped to zero" equals unconsciousness, not death, so to a significant extent this will be about what the attacking player thinks makes sense in the fiction. I certainly have memories of the wizard player in my game using Colour Spray as an AoE when innocent parties were...
    12 replies | 363 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 7th November, 2018, 05:55 AM
    Coming in a bit late (!), but this resonated with me. It may seem slightly odd, but I had the sort of feeling you describe when our group generated PCs for Classic Traveller. I'm sure it's clunkier than BitD, and probably not as "fiction first", but compared to some other systems (eg AD&D, or RM, or a certain approach to 4e) the characters felt real, with histories that could easily be seen as...
    41 replies | 5167 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 7th November, 2018, 05:19 AM
    Manbearcat, cthulhu42, I think this might be the thread: Blades in the Dark Actual Play. It was started by Campbell.
    5 replies | 275 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Wednesday, 7th November, 2018, 02:50 AM
    On these boards, I think Manbearcat has played a bit of BitD. Maybe Campbell also. I think there are a lot of RPG systems that are underappreciated and worth talking more about. That's why I keep posting about my play experiences with Prince Valiant, Classic Traveller, etc! Unfortunately I've not played any BitD and not much DW either, so don't have heaps to offer on this occasion. I am...
    5 replies | 275 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Wednesday, 7th November, 2018, 01:55 AM
    That could be a second form of impairment Of course do an intimidate on every last one it could clear the area pretty well.
    12 replies | 363 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Tuesday, 6th November, 2018, 09:26 AM
    I think i agree most of the time individual stats are hardly needed even in a dangerous situation. In a battle they are part of a huge skill challenge. The movies feature heros teaching and guiding joe blows in advance of an onslaught to minimize burned down town transforming them into surprise effectiveness it might be history checks to guide them so as to minimize their deaths or get them...
    12 replies | 363 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Tuesday, 6th November, 2018, 06:46 AM
    What's your resolution system? Ie how do you decide if the PCs have escaped the dreams?
    6 replies | 279 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Tuesday, 6th November, 2018, 05:58 AM
    Alongside the concrete uses of the practical arts, I am thinking I may include example skill challenges and how they might interact with them. As well as a Without the Art Sidebar section for each.
    336 replies | 34461 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Tuesday, 6th November, 2018, 05:42 AM
    Yes and that was hilariously extreme disconnection between the fiction and the function was gobbled up and made a sacred cow.... hell magic missile was changed to sometimes miss? They couldnt have that.
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Tuesday, 6th November, 2018, 05:11 AM
    Especially (b), ie the fact that spellcasting in D&D almost never requires a successful check. Think about what, supposedly, the fiction of D&D spellcasting involves - precise hand gestures, speaking complex arcane syllables of such power and profundity that only a few of them can be impressed into a human brain at any one time (ie Vancian spell memorisation/preparation), pulling various...
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
    4 XP
  • pemerton's Avatar
    Tuesday, 6th November, 2018, 03:08 AM
    I've never played serious Pendragon, only one or two one-shots at conventions years ago. I got a copy of Pendragon 5.2 with Prince Valiant as part of the Kickstarter. It's an interesting system, and we're using the price lists and the map for our Prince Valiant game, but I don't think I could imagine actually running Pendragon as a serious campaign. Besides it's general "heaviness", I don't...
    7 replies | 307 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Tuesday, 6th November, 2018, 01:36 AM
    Fanning edition wars and caving to them got him his current job. edit: i know pointless snark
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Tuesday, 6th November, 2018, 12:21 AM
    Gygax's DMG, pp 110-11: Serving some deity is an integral part of AD&D. . . . he accumulation of hit points and the ever-greater abilities and better saving throws represents the aid supplied by supernatural forces. This is consistent with the description of hit points on p 82, which includes the increase in hit points . . . reflect both the actual physical ability of the character . . ....
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Monday, 5th November, 2018, 02:32 PM
    Bringing your example to the table with my adjusted practices and the DMG2 guidelines. The Dwarf without a relevant practice could do as you said or spend a surge to get an autosuccess and if your Dwarf had the Martial Practice Forge Mastery, he could have an auto success along with an Endurance check to not have to pay that HS.
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Monday, 5th November, 2018, 08:30 AM
    Sure, but then we need "codified rules" for how a martial PC gets to add a shield (or whatever) to his/her equipment list. And we probably also want some system - a fairly generic one is fine, even desirable - for working out how hard it is to throw your shield (or whatever) and stun three orcs (or whatever). I agree with Garthanos that if we don't go beyond what the GM envisages a strong...
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
    6 XP
  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Monday, 5th November, 2018, 05:30 AM
    Him most definitely he went gathering his feats one by one finding tutors as he went along to do so (yes he learned them supernaturally fast rather like PCs) ... it was very D&D like character and one mentioned as a fighter in 2e phb. Eventually he learned some that maybe related more to demigod status like his Warp Spasm but it was really just an extension of Berserkergang.
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Monday, 5th November, 2018, 05:22 AM
    When a DM starts talking about chin ups and things they can personally do when you are talking about figuring out what Heroic and Paragon level or Epic Demigod Heros can accomplish ... you can guarantee mages will make your warriors feel like utter chumps
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
    5 XP
  • pemerton's Avatar
    Monday, 5th November, 2018, 04:49 AM
    You're foucsing on the fiction. I'm focusing on the gameplay. A rule that is at work in my 4e game - in virtue of one of the player's choice of epic destiny for a PC - allows that PC to wield bigger weapons that deal more damage. The fiction of the epic destiny is that the PC has grown in stature. I wouldn't mind if the fiction was, instead, that the PC has been injected with super-soldier...
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
    4 XP
  • pemerton's Avatar
    Monday, 5th November, 2018, 12:33 AM
    I really don't see much evidence in the history of RPGs that this way of approaching it provides dynamic and capable "martial" characters. This applies to everything from the stuff Garthanos is talking about, to exactly how many orcs my Conan-esque fighter can slay per game-unit-of-action, to the need in AD&D for my fighter to PC to get a girdle of giant strength if s/he is going to emulate a...
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
    3 XP
  • UngeheuerLich's Avatar
    Sunday, 4th November, 2018, 09:36 PM
    I bet the later resurrected character is also not the biggest fan of sovereign glue on his eyes.
    19 replies | 1125 view(s)
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  • UngeheuerLich's Avatar
    Sunday, 4th November, 2018, 09:26 PM
    I actually like the warding bond idea. Should be a bonus ranger spell. I really hope the ranger gets an optional bonus spell list to bring the phb subclasses in line with the xanathar ones. warding bond seems like a good choice for a second level spell. As I said in the other thread, allowing the ranger to share his hit dice would be another fix. My last one would be clarifying that the animal...
    69 replies | 3374 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Sunday, 4th November, 2018, 05:30 PM
    No worries! Like I've said in a couple of posts now, I think it's a bit underappreciated. In five sessions I've used six episodes from the main book (three knightly challenges, a family in distress, a woman in distress, and rebellious peasants twice) and six from the episode book (Kenneth Hite's wild hunt, the episode called A Wild Hunt which is the Crowmaster one, the Blue Cloak, the Crimson...
    7 replies | 307 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Sunday, 4th November, 2018, 05:22 PM
    I would say "scenario" rather than adventure. It's generally a situation that will activate knightly intervention - attacks by bandits, rescues from bandits, helping out innocent women/villagers/ghosts/etc figure prominently. Ron Edwards gives some nice descriptions of how Prince Valiant scenarios work: . . . the character's judgmental and active presence is established and already in...
    4 replies | 362 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Sunday, 4th November, 2018, 03:39 PM
    My group has played a couple of Prince Valiant sessions since my last actual play report. The first of these (fourth session in what has turned out to be a campaign) saw the squire PC progress dramatically. The session started with some recap, a mixture of in-character and out-of-character: our fourth player, who had been absent from the previous session, was there, and so there had to be...
    7 replies | 307 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Sunday, 4th November, 2018, 05:15 AM
    That latter apply when they see another fall for the trick?
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Sunday, 4th November, 2018, 12:38 AM
    Sorry for the late reply! Yes, we use dice (evens for success) rather than coins, just because we've got plenty of dice ready to hand - and when a joust is on the rattle of the dice in hand emulates the thundering of hooves! I think your idea of using PV for Middle Earth makes sense. If you do it, I'd be interested to hear how it goes.
    4 replies | 362 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Saturday, 3rd November, 2018, 09:08 PM
    Agreed that could be an implementation AND a battlemaster could get at-wills by sacrificing an attack from their attack action scanning for an opening to do a maneuver (as though they spent a superiority die)
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Saturday, 3rd November, 2018, 08:49 PM
    I have done totally free form gaming with my brother and friend so yes i know it can work wonderfully and even for magic too or super tech or whatever. So yes it can work.
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Saturday, 3rd November, 2018, 08:40 PM
    A more extensive and "generous" page 42 like methodology comes to mind.
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Saturday, 3rd November, 2018, 08:31 PM
    Just say no was the order of the day for 9th level side kick martial types in 1e land. DMs without guidance are not bad DMs they are just poor at estimating game balance on the fly and allowing martials to do awesome improv is exactly about that. I want my Cu Chulainn doing a flying back flip trick called the Salmon Leap AND not begging the DM for the privilege of saying something other...
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Saturday, 3rd November, 2018, 06:57 PM
    We probably disagree. Because I disagree that people generally have a "good idea" about what a paragon or epic martial type can accomplish. AND it's the games responsibility to help establish that, within the context of what is enabled for magical types. I normally say it as martial archetypes need permission to be awesome and wizards need to have their awesome limited because they have no...
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
    3 XP
  • UngeheuerLich's Avatar
    Saturday, 3rd November, 2018, 02:49 PM
    How exactly would warding bond help with area attacks. If both gain half the t Damage the other one resisted isn't that exact the same overall damage output. Or do you think the ranger should stay so far away that only the beast is ever affected by aoe? against single targets it might prove useful though, because you don't need to add more straight hp. what would be needed even more would be...
    69 replies | 3374 view(s)
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  • pemerton's Avatar
    Saturday, 3rd November, 2018, 10:34 AM
    I don't know if Libramarian still posts on these boards, but he used to have good ideas for this sort of thing.
    3 replies | 291 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Saturday, 3rd November, 2018, 05:39 AM
    Well I rather like the Avenger... the Striker Armorless Stoic Paladin. Now if the healer priest had been armorless and reliant on divine guidance/inspiration for armor. And it would be nice if we could tag the post as 4e
    13 replies | 28932 view(s)
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  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Saturday, 3rd November, 2018, 05:05 AM
    Druids could have powers that only work once per 10 minutes in a particular area because they fatigue the local environment (if an encounter was constantly moving they might end up using it multiple times) ... ie they are effectively once per normal encounter. Some martial tricks could only work once against reasonably clever/perceptive enemies or till they see them done against another....
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
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  • UngeheuerLich's Avatar
    Friday, 2nd November, 2018, 11:28 AM
    Not that I want to say something about the qualiy of this change, but it is not the first instance of an actual change to the rule. Paladin auras not stacking or features in general other than spells was an actual change. Errata because they added something they just forgot... I think comparing that to the changes of 4e is a bit far fetched... I also think crawford explains it well enough. It...
    75 replies | 3471 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Thursday, 1st November, 2018, 09:21 PM
    One solution might be to give Troops the first time after Gathered via the explicit Gather Troops or similarly a "Fresh Troops" effectively an extra success (or the Marshal Troops is effectively free up to the amount paid). when they are used via Marshal Troops thus it is as effective as might be gained by alternative methods. Note to self: This is a reminder that Marshal means "to bring...
    336 replies | 34461 view(s)
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  • UngeheuerLich's Avatar
    Thursday, 1st November, 2018, 02:18 PM
    I think dodge action when issued no command is actually not that bad. But I have to agree, just allowing the beast to do whatever it was told until another command was issued would have easily be called a clarification. It is not 100% clear that issuing a command has to be repeated every turn. Maybe the interpretation is still possible. We have to see.
    75 replies | 3471 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Thursday, 1st November, 2018, 09:20 AM
    I am considering whether to separate out the act of gathering troops from guiding them in battle. Then the act of gathering them might be well any of several practices (or even just skillful action used towards the challenge where failures might impair the quality of the results and challenge over all) You could use The Art of the Sensei to turn citizenry into surprisingly armed and...
    336 replies | 34461 view(s)
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  • Ryujin's Avatar
    Wednesday, 31st October, 2018, 09:40 PM
    It's also not a stretch to assume that specific spider, which got into that apartment somehow, might also have gotten out and been part of the spiderpocalypse.
    174 replies | 4538 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Garthanos's Avatar
    Wednesday, 31st October, 2018, 05:19 PM
    OK on this "I would’ve much preferred the ability to adopt any role within the core 4 by giving players a big choice at level 1, an option that placed an overlay on every power you used or that gave you a new way to use them." Basically have Source Specific Powers and less class powers. But I think combining that with having BIG differing stances to dynamically switch role might be a better idea...
    824 replies | 11286 view(s)
    2 XP
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Thursday, 15th November, 2018

  • 03:14 AM - Parmandur mentioned Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    ...rison to earlier edition casters and if you picked a ranger it can be very low tactical element even before essentials other than deciding who do I attack twice with occasional how hard. 5e seems to have less short term emphasis - part of the thing that allowed short term to be more interesting was action points (and milestones) and they were an everyman tool not fighter action surge. Second wind too was an everyman. Encounter powers too were a part of it, much more immediate than the 5e analog. Yeah, most of the action economy elements were the same across Classes. And I can abstractly appreciate the elegance of making it the same...but I tend to think Mearls is right in the original post (if I can remember that far back!) that 4E may have better received if it retained more asymmetrical Class design. (Anti-Edition War disclaimer: I never had a strong or emotionally charged negative reaction to 4E, still don't, and may have had a positive reaction if my DM was pemerton, Garthanos or Manbearcat ; I'm interested in understanding the phenomenon of the "New Coke" reception, in myself and others, not telling people they are pretending to be an Elf Wizard the wrong way. I've found this thread very interesting in uncovering my subconscious disappointment with the purely symmetrical action economy, but still think 5E just has the 4E Skill system with streamlined math)

Sunday, 11th November, 2018

  • 09:38 AM - pemerton mentioned Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    @pemerton and in part @Hussar You have pushed for the merits of a defined skill table at various levels and/or mentioned 5e DM's giving varying DCs on skill checks as issues of the game. I'm wondering if you have the same contempt, because it can only be described as contempt after so many posts, with TotM. Let us face it TotM can produce some varied results, not all DMs will have the exact same picture in their mind and certainly players will have different ones. I'm wondering if you are consistent in your contempt for unsurety across the board or if you're just cherry-picking?I find it bizarre that a view of the merits of A over B, maintined against others who disagree, counts as contempt! How would I show non-contempt? By changing my mind? So it's contemptuous to disagree with you (and others)? As Garthanos pointed out, this is a 4e thread in the pre-5e editions sub-forum - I don't see how it's remotely contemptuous for posters to explain why certain features of 4e, which are absent from 5e, appeal to them. I also have no idea why you fasten on "unsurety" as an issue. I am the one who quoted the passage upthread, from LostSoul, about the table-specific manner in which colour is established in 4e. As far as I can tell Manbearcat and I are the only posters in this thread who regularly play non-D&D systems (like MHRP/Cortex+ Heroic, Prince Valiant, and the like) that use conflict resolution mechanics that proceed as a 4e skill challenge does - first, establish feasibility in the fiction, then use the system framework to set a difficulty. As far as theatre of the mind is concerned, whatever floats your boat. In AD&D I don't bother tracking precise distances because they don't matter - there is no tracking of in-melee movement in AD&D, so the only question is whether someone is close en...

Saturday, 10th November, 2018

  • 02:14 AM - pemerton mentioned Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    ... modular depending on how the DM chooses to rule it and, as long as the DM is consistent should be fine.Of cousre I'm talking about what I want in the game - if you follow the thread, you'll see that this discussion arose from discussing the adjudication of martial prowess, and how 4e supports that in various ways both combat and non-combat. Of course, 4e is jsut as "modular" as 5e in this respect - nothing stops a GM deciding that the 15th level fighter can't do what I described, and the worst will be a modest bit of friction between the flavour of that decision, and the flavour of some paragon paths etc - but that friction will probably be no greater than in the 5e game where the fighter can survive being enveloped by a fire elemental but has his/her hands burn to a crisp if s/he stick them into a forge. What 4e does offer is a systematic framework for implementing whatever decision is made, via a DC-by-level chart and skill challenge system. FURTHER EDIT: As Manbearcat and Garthanos have pointed out, 5e is not "modular" when it comes to spellcasters - they have a range of quite significant and fairly well-detailed abilities which establish their capabilities pretty straightforwardly. And another point: in my 4e game, an epic-tier chaos sorcerer sealed the Abyss with an appropriate Arcana check, and sacrificing the appropriate resources. I've seen 5e GMs suggest that (i) in 5e Arcana is only about scholarly knowledge, and not manipulating magical phenomena; and (ii) that the appropriate way to handle that would be to undertake research, create a new spell etc. In gameplay terms, undertaking research means playing the game so as to learn more from the GM about what action declarations are required to produce the desired result. It shifts the focus from adjudicating action resolutions to unfolding the GM's conception of the fiction. A further strength of the 4e system structure, in my view, is that it facilitates the former focus of play. (As Parmandur and I di...

Friday, 9th November, 2018

  • 10:30 PM - Lanefan mentioned Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    ...er-high-level stuff - all the talk of Conan and Elric and Hercules - and thus has limited relevance to the vast majority of tables whose games just never get that high. And with that said, if really-high-level epic stuff is what a particular table is looking to play most of the time, is D&D the right system or should that table be looking at some sort of supers game? In all editions the 'sweet spot' of play generally seems to be the low-mid to mid levels (roughly 3rd-9th in 1e-2e, 3rd-12th in 3e, maybe 4th-14th in 4e) - D&D has never really done really high-level play all that well, mostly IMO because the PCs just get too big for the setting/fiction. 3e's fix for this was to make the setting (i.e. monsters) scale with the PCs, leading to some ridiculous outcomes mostly ending with there should be no commoners left alive on the planet. 5e's much better fix is to greatly narrow the power grade between low and high level. 2. A fair way back in the thread there was talk - from Garthanos I think but I could be mistaken - about how the genre of play is expected to change by tier in 4e. To me this would be a bug, not a feature, as it represents a built-in reduction of the system's flexibility for running different types of campaigns and-or storylines. If for example I want to run a courtly-intrigue campaign - limited combat, lots of skill challenges, mortal foes - yet still has the PCs advance through the levels I'd probably be fighting the system most of the way to prevent the PCs from becoming godlike in the setting by 12th level. Now one could quite legitimately say that maybe 4e thus wouldn't be the best system for such a campaign...but that's just my point. Every campaign type that a system is ill-suited for is going to reduce that system's overall usefulness, and thus popularity. 3. Following on from 2, above: one very common type of story / campaign that 4e couldn't do very well was a true zero-to-hero progression. Sure it got the hero end right, but in ...
  • 07:30 AM - pemerton mentioned Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    a Level 20 PC isn't likely to be killed by a legion of Goblins, but putting defeat utterly out if reach isn't the style the game went for. 4e doesn't have the mechanical resources out of the box to determine whether or not a single PC is killed by a legion of goblins. At least, not within the combat system. (I guess in principle you could stat up each company of goblins as a swarm and play out an extended series of battles. That would seem incredibly boring. The game isn't designed to suppport that or make it playable.) As Garthanos suggests, you might try and mange it as, or as part of, a skill challenge instead. I used that approach when the PCs in my 4e game stormed Torog's Soul Abattoir: Although the Soul Abattoir is described in very general terms in the Underdark book, little detail is given. I located it at the end of icy tunnels running through the Shadowdark, on the far shore of the Soul Slough into which flows Lathan, the River of Souls. The "liquid souls" flowed under the ice and stone to the icy, Vault-of-the-Drow-style cavern containing the Soul Abattoir. The Abattoir itself was a series of buildings into which souls "flowed" in a fashion analogous to rivers. Inside the buildings the streams of souls were directed through Torog's various machines, which extracted soul energy from by way of torture, converting that energy into "darkspikes" from which Torog could then draw power by driving them into his body. The destruction of the Soul Abattoir was run mostly as a skill challenge, but with a com...
  • 01:26 AM - pemerton mentioned Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    People with pointy sticks, so yeah, Goblins.I don't think that Hercules is seriously challenged by a group of Athenian hoplites surrounding him. Nor Lancelot, for that matter. Nor is Conan if he's able to get his back against a wall but otherwise is pressed by foes. A character who can seriously threaten a demon prince seems to me to be closer to Hercules than Samwise Gamgee in overall power/heroic stature. I think 4e does quite a good job of presenting such a state of affairs. I've got no real opinion on 5e combat other than that the monsters don't seem super-interesting. But 5e non-combat seems to me not to model "tiers" very well, for the sorts of reasons that I and others ( Garthanos, MwaO) have posted. The upshot (it seems to me) is that the DC for a high level fighter shoving his hands into the forge so as to stabilise the magic hammer so that the artificers can grasp it with their tools is impossible.
  • 12:50 AM - pemerton mentioned Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    I don't want max level characters who feel no fear when being surrounded and outnumberedBy whom? Bar-room thugs? Vrock demons? The issues of whether being surrounded/outnumbered is a threat seems somewhat distinct from the issue of whether goblins should still be a threat to 20th level PCs. But is that not what the minion mechanic does? There are no paragon or epic tier goblin minions. (At least if one is playing in the default setting.) Ogres are minions at paragon tier. I used hobgoblin phalanxes (swarms) at mid-paragon. At epic tier, the swarms are swarms of vrocks and other demons. In principle one might use a goblin army as a threat at epic tier, but - and going back to a point Garthanos made upthread - 4e doesn't have good mechanics for handling this. (Swarms don't really work beyond 4 sq x 4 sq, and clearly an army is bigger than that.)
  • 12:36 AM - pemerton mentioned Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    The claim was that in 5e a goblin can still hit a 10th level character due to mostly static AC whereas in 4e the AC improvement due to level makes this unlikely to impossible. If you want to talk damage, debuffs and interesting conditions that is a separate conversation.Here's Garthanos's post: Yes your skill at fighting somehow doesnt decrease the chance of you being hit by stupid goblin.... you are prevented from that by magical forces apparently and it didnt make sense in 1e doesn't make sense in 5e. Garthanos was talking about AD&D/3E - skill at fighting doesn't change your chance of being hit by the goblin (it does increase your hp). When talking about 4e, minions and their damage rules are absolutely pertinent to this - your fighting skill is expressed mechanically through a debuff on the goblin - reduced damage and dead-on-a-hit. EDIT: I see that Garthanos has also posted making much the same point.

Monday, 5th November, 2018

  • 08:30 AM - pemerton mentioned Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    Of course the mechanical power of the PC is the result of building the PC. If you were to translate Captain America into your DnD game then his power would result from the building of the PC (or monster stat block I suppose) plus his magical shieldSure, but then we need "codified rules" for how a martial PC gets to add a shield (or whatever) to his/her equipment list. And we probably also want some system - a fairly generic one is fine, even desirable - for working out how hard it is to throw your shield (or whatever) and stun three orcs (or whatever). I agree with Garthanos that if we don't go beyond what the GM envisages a strong normal person can do we're going to have sucky martial types relative to magic-users. (Other possibilities clearly exist, but I take it are ruled out for D&D: common sense possibilities set the limits for martial endeavour, but access to supernatural abilities is equal opportunity (eg Runequest); common sense + cinematic possiilities set the limts for martial endeavour, and supernatural abilities are a GM-side thing only (eg Prince Valiant); etc.) When you start doing supernatural stuff like that… you’re not really martial anymore.This seems to imply that "martial" PCs can't be high level. And in my view is at odds with D&D tradition, which has always allowed martial PCs to do supernatural stuff like wrestle giants, withstand being bitten by dragons, etc. That's before we get to rather canonical texts like Gygax's DMG, which tells us that the increase in hp and saving throws (which in his sytems are enjoyed by fighters mo...
  • 12:33 AM - pemerton mentioned Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    By the nature of martial abilities, you don't need to define what is and is not possible. Because people generally have an idea. You just set the limits (how much you can lift, how far you can jump) and people can extrapolate and fill in the blanks.I really don't see much evidence in the history of RPGs that this way of approaching it provides dynamic and capable "martial" characters. This applies to everything from the stuff Garthanos is talking about, to exactly how many orcs my Conan-esque fighter can slay per game-unit-of-action, to the need in AD&D for my fighter to PC to get a girdle of giant strength if s/he is going to emulate a comic book hero like Power Man or even Captain America.

Monday, 3rd September, 2018


Tuesday, 28th August, 2018

  • 11:58 PM - Ratskinner mentioned Garthanos in post Tink-Tink-Boom vs. the Death Spiral: The Damage Mechanic in RPGs
    I dunno about realistic for either system. From what I've seen in multiple sources...as, I think Garthanos mentions above,...the individual response and circumstances of an injury seem much wilder and more determinant that anything else. There are real-life examples of Death Spirals, TTB*, and "One Hits". I agree that "realism" might just take the form of a "damage save" mechanic that yields three results: 1)No big deal, costume damage 2) Keep going, but see how bad it is after the fight 3) You're out/down (possibly dead, but maybe roll to see how). Personally, my beef with the TTB result is the lack of dramatic interest. There's really only one narrative there, its all Disney Damage. Yes, I've seen and even performed modifications on it to make is better. But still, if we're shooting to emulate the fiction here, TTB isn't very good at it. Heroes often have to suffer and work past all sorts of lingering injuries in dramatically interesting ways, and TTB just skips right over that. (Of course, if you're not personally shooting to emulate fiction, then TTB works just fine.) Which means I l...

Tuesday, 7th August, 2018

  • 04:03 AM - pemerton mentioned Garthanos in post A discussion of metagame concepts in game design
    I think that depends on what causes that encounter mode. It should be fine if the wizard could say "my spell will end if you attack something, so don't go throwing tomatoes when the bard cracks a joke about joining the mile high club, like we know he will." Or something lke that for each instance that initiates encounter mode. Regardless of that, I do think it's weird that getting attacked ends a spell lke wind walking. Especially since I just pictured a flock of fiendish seagulls smirking as they watch an adventuring party lift off the ground. One seagull says to another, "We wait until they're way up there, then bomb them with our poop."Your examples make the point, though - does heckling a performer and throwing a tomato at them count as "encounter mode"? And for clarity (and with a shoutout to Garthanos), I've got nothing against RPG mechanics that are based around scenes, including different sorts of scenes - I GM MHRP/Cortex+ Heroic, which uses a contrast between action scenes and transition scenes to manage the progression of ingame events. But (1) the fact that I don't mind those mechanics doesn't stop them being metagame, and (2) you don't see anything in Cortex+ Heroic, or even (that I recall) in 4e as weird as PF2 Wind Walk: When you cast this spell, all targets transform into a vaguely cloud-like form and are picked up by a wind moving in the direction of your choice. You can Concentrate on the Spell to change the wind’s direction. The wind carries the targets at a Speed of 20 miles per hour, but if any of the targets make an attack, Cast a Spell, come under attack, or otherwise enter encounter mode, the spell ends for all targets and they drift gently to the ground. The targets must be ingame entities, because they are picked up by a wind, and that's clearly not hap...

Saturday, 4th August, 2018

  • 01:23 AM - pemerton mentioned Garthanos in post Out of combat balance - skills trained and known
    darkbard - if we had constructive threads about useful techniques, then where would we find the time to argue that metagaming is not really RPGing! Garthanos - I don't think it would break the game to identify ways for fighters to have strong INT- or CHA-based skills. But I don't hae any suggestions on how to change the system to allow this. But as the game is currently structured, here is my take: recognising the heraldry of the local realm, or making friends with a town mayor, is Heroic tier or perhaps low Paragon tier activity, and a fighter (especially with training) can be as effective at this as a bard, warlord or wizard. But once we get into upper Paragon or Epic tier, we're talking about feats comparable to Luthien's charming of Morgoth. These are things a fighter is not likely to succed at (though the upper Epic tier fighter in my game did succeed in an Intimate check in a skill challenge involving Yan-C-Bin - naturally Yan-C-Bin wasn't scared of him, but the threat was effective against the djinn in Yan-C-Bin's court). In other words, the fighter's mechanical weakness should (in my view) be narrated in terms of the potenc...

Thursday, 2nd August, 2018

  • 06:00 AM - AbdulAlhazred mentioned Garthanos in post Out of combat balance - skills trained and known
    It's worked great for my table. Everyone has a wide variety of skills that they're good at, which makes the skill part of the game feel much more of a group thing instead of just got the skill heavy characters. Plus they can actively help each other more and break into smaller functional units. People can build weirder more interesting PCs with the freedom. Charismatic druid and smart fighter and fit wizard who paid attention to learning fireball but not Arcana are fun ideas when you actually have the skill ranks to be properly good with the required skills. Yeah, I'm not arguing with the lists at all, backgrounds pretty well made those irrelevant anyway, almost. I get what you and Garthanos are saying. I still feel like I enjoy the sort of "heist flick" motif of each guy has his favorite approach to solving problems. I never ran games with only 2 or 3 players, for whatever reason. If I did, I THINK I'd make them more tightly themed than usual. That would mean, for example, the PCs are playing an urban stealth kind of game, etc. They'd all be built on themes related to that, so probably they'd not too much feel the lack of Nature or History too much. If it became critical there's always a way to give the party a resource and make finding that with the skills they do have into the focus. It just makes it feel more like your working for it to figure out how to leverage what you have, vs being omni-competent. Neither way is bad of course.

Friday, 22nd June, 2018

  • 01:12 PM - pemerton mentioned Garthanos in post Pre-3e mechanics vs d20 system mechanics
    I'm with Garthanos - the biggest change is not the way of generating probabilities and comparing them to target numbers! Uniformity has an obvious simplicity to it, and saves having to muck about with lots of dice. But there are issues with making everything have the same granularity. I've been playing a bit of Classic Traveller lately - it uses mostly uniform rolls (2d6, occasionally 3d6) but the modifier can be different depending on the task. It's superficially uniform, but the varying mods modify the granularity of resolution.

Tuesday, 5th June, 2018

  • 03:27 AM - AbdulAlhazred mentioned Garthanos in post Revised 4E Wizard Class with Freeform Spellcasting System
    ...zing to you at character generation that you will significantly pay for that limitation every other game day. Or else not get a -1 for it. That tends to put a halt to that kind of abuse. Champions mentions that all the time - if a limitation isn't a limitation, you don't get points for it. Sure but that feels potentially heavy handed, in several ways. I like the Fate method as it doesn't require the Game Master decide ahead of time the likelihood of the disadvantage entering play nor require it be a given frequency,ie it happens when it happens in keeping with story. And you pick the limits based on story instead of the potential value you might gain too. Yeah, I gotta say, I'm NOT a fan of the stick! Anyway, even if the GM THINKS he's going to punish you 'every other game day' the player (and trust me I know every trick in the book :devil:) doesn't have to take that lying down. Now it becomes a 'playing the GM' situation, and it just goes down hill from there really. Garthanos has it right, the proper solution is the carrot. If I say to you "hey, this disadvantage will do fun stuff for you!" then that's cool! I mean The Wizard might well have 'lost his staff' a few times if it meant he got some great break in his favor. I've been thinking about this in terms of my own game. I have a concept called 'Limitations', which are literally 'anti-boons'. They exist, in a mechanical sense, but there's really never been any conceptual structure to drive how they might be used in the game. That is, you could always 'accept a setback' and gain 'Inspiration' as a payback for it, but I never really thought much about the Limitations being viewed as a character RESOURCE. Maybe I shouldn't even call them a separate thing from boons, because maybe with the right reward structure they actually ARE boons! ;)

Saturday, 28th April, 2018

  • 12:02 AM - Tony Vargas mentioned Garthanos in post Warlording: The Subclass Edition. Because there wasn't enough of these floating around.
    ... already pushing up against the wall in terms of handing out bonuses from things like bless or paladin auras, so I am loathe to make anything else that can potentially stack with them.Meh, it only matters if you have everything that might give out a bonus, all in the same party. More likely you'll only have 1 or 2 from the 'support' list of Cleric, Druid, Bard, Paladin or Warlord. Likewise some mechanics don't exist anymore, bloodied and the various riders that were attached to some weapon types for example. Bloodied doesn't exist as a keyword, because natural language, but "1/2 maximum hps" inevitably still exists. Again, just a little wordier. Not sure what riders you're talking about. 5e actually /added/ damage types to weapons, you might be able to do something with that. Or do you just mean weapon groups like 'light blade' or 'spear?' Again, they're still there, just not as jargon. Really should find Wrecan's excellent analysis of the Warlord from the WotC boards... Garthanos: don't you have that saved somewhere? Now, for this to qualify as a proper Warlord, it has to be able to do Warlordy things from level 1 apparently. Seeing as how I think the Warlord belongs as a Fighter Subclass, this creates a conundrum, because the Fighter Subclasses come online at level 3.Not the only conundrum. The Fighter in 5e is not much like either the Fighter nor Warlord in 4e. It's more like the Slayer sub-class of Fighter in Essentials, a 'Striker' (traditional 'Tank') that's tough and all about DPR - two thing the Warlord was not much about ('cept the Bravura, a bit). However, there is a hack for getting around that: Fighting Style. Yep, Mearls briefly speculated he might do that sometime... Fighting Styles: Tactician: Your allies within 30' of you have advantage on attack rolls against any target you attack until the beginning of your next turn. Inspirational: Whenever you hit a creature with an attack, choose one ally within 60' who can see or...

Tuesday, 24th April, 2018

  • 05:50 AM - AbdulAlhazred mentioned Garthanos in post List of Potential New Martial Practices
    Can't battleminds & wardens come up with a whole lotta surges, too? True, though Wardens could fall somewhat under the 'fighter' rubric (or not depending on your flavoring of them). Battleminds are just weird... Just to comment on what Garthanos said, yes, high surge characters like fighters GENERALLY use a lot of them in combat, BUT they don't HAVE to necessarily. Also, what about non-combat situations? This is a problem too, all of a sudden things shift around a whole bunch unless you are careful to keep a fixed mix of encounter types.

Thursday, 25th January, 2018

  • 03:14 AM - pemerton mentioned Garthanos in post Unearthed Wrecana - Expanding Cantrips with Stunts
    Garthanos - interesting post! You're going to start putting me in the "reactionary" basket, but let me explain why I'm not sure about the need for tricks! It seems to me that issues like creating puffs of smoke, or creating water, or purifying food, are going to come mostly in two sorts of contexts. One is a low-stakes context, where it's just colour. In that case, I don't think I need a mechanic beyond skills + "say 'yes'" to support it. (Eg the cleric speaks a prayer of purification over the dirty plate - now it gleams!) The other is a skill challenge context, in which case - for the system to work - I need a skill check to be made. (I know rituals and daily powers, per the DMG and DMG2, can create an exception to this, but they are rationed abilities and so, at least in my experience, don't dominate the skill challenge resolution procedure.) And once a check is being made, the same consideration as in low-stakes context applies: whether or not the character can create the smoke pu...


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Thursday, 15th November, 2018

  • 03:12 AM - Parmandur quoted Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    ...rison to earlier edition casters and if you picked a ranger it can be very low tactical element even before essentials other than deciding who do I attack twice with occasional how hard. 5e seems to have less short term emphasis - part of the thing that allowed short term to be more interesting was action points (and milestones) and they were an everyman tool not fighter action surge. Second wind too was an everyman. Encounter powers too were a part of it, much more immediate than the 5e analog. Yeah, most of the action economy elements were the same across Classes. And I can abstractly appreciate the elegance of making it the same...but I tend to think Mearls is right in the original post (if I can remember that far back!) that 4E may have better received if it retained more asymmetrical Class design. (Anti-Edition War disclaimer: I never had a strong or emotionally charged negative reaction to 4E, still don't, and may have had a positive reaction if my DM was pemerton, Garthanos or Manbearcat ; I'm interested in understanding the phenomenon of the "New Coke" reception, in myself and others, not telling people they are pretending to be an Elf Wizard the wrong way. I've found this thread very interesting in uncovering my subconscious disappointment with the purely symmetrical action economy, but still think 5E just has the 4E Skill system with streamlined math)
  • 02:45 AM - Shasarak quoted Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    4e is as much D&D as every other edition and every bloody edition plays different in some fashion this is just more garbage from you so you can giggle. So much that 5e cant even do it? What is this Newspeak?
  • 02:28 AM - Shasarak quoted Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    edition warrior you remain Come on man, you cant just say it. What the heck.

Wednesday, 14th November, 2018

  • 08:03 PM - Jester David quoted Garthanos in post Lets design a Warlord for 5th edition
    Should reinvigorating call be "can't use it on them again until the subject/target finishes a short or long rest"? It can go either way. There's examples of both in the book. But it would make more sense...
  • 05:02 AM - Manbearcat quoted Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    Is the idea to have a complication table perhaps .... I personally like how some 4e spells had repercussions when cast In particular those from the Malediction Invoker. Malediction Invokers make for great thematic witches. The invoker/wizard in my 4e game has some similar abilities - the main one I'm thinking of at the moment is the reroll a failed attack roll if it's an action point-enabled attack. (From the Divine Philosopher paragon path.) Interrupts are the most obvious mechanical devices for implementing prophecy/foresight into D&D. In my Cortex+ Heroic game, the wizardly PC has an ability to take a die from the Doom Pool and add it to his pool - when it goes back to the Doom Pool it steps up unless he spends a PP, in which case it steps down. The flavour is that he can see the doom that's coming and either embrace it, or do things to hold it off! Yup. All awesome! Through Death's Eyes is a similar one in Dungeon World...but its for a Fighter (winning)! Through Death’...
  • 03:49 AM - Manbearcat quoted Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    Is the idea to have a complication table perhaps .... I personally like how some 4e spells had repercussions when cast In particular those from the Malediction Invoker. Malediction Invokers make for great thematic witches. It could certainly be done via tables or it could just be done via a well-defined play agenda, procedures, and GMing principles (a la DW, AW, Blades). What does "narratively it is not accurate" mean? There's lots of relevant fiction with unreliable spellcasting, and plenty of fantasy lit where casting in combat is not even an option (or at least, doesn't happen). The D&D version of a magic wielder (almost any of them) has become so much of its own thing that it seems to be warping what people see and write in the genre. As far as "not fun" goes...well I suppose it wouldn't be for the caster players who are expecting to have everything work automatically, but...a) I've run other games where this was not the case with no problems and b) how is it any more disappointing than...
  • 01:37 AM - Jester David quoted Garthanos in post Lets design a Warlord for 5th edition
    A couple of ideas I had seem like they could be used by Warlord/Fighter variants One was a low level feature that helps out the Strength based character called Battle ready For most the beginning of a battle is something they have to react to and its reflexes that take over but for you its a fulfillment of your expectations and your plans. You may pick and alternative stat (instead of dexterity to base your initiative on) Intelligence - Quick Thinking / Charisma - Cunning / Wisdom - for Perception even considered Constitution - for instinctive response. I considered having them use Intelligence instead of Dexterity. Or something like Investigation/ Perception checks. Instead, I opted to give them the choice of adding or subtracting Int, which gives them more of a range, and lets them decide where they want to act. Which adds a quick decision element that feels tactical. The other is a fighting style that enables Warlord like function with every successful strike. Works alrig...

Tuesday, 13th November, 2018

  • 06:26 PM - Parmandur quoted Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    I just had someone tell me you might get close to that at level 6 in 5e and my answer to that is "good" (its available in a form early enough in 4e too) Although it definitely seems Legendary (which isnt quite epic) see Hiawatha not to mention similar Asian plainsmen - it actually can be done IRL its a snap shot technique, short bow with arrows clustered in hand at the beginning (they do not have huge penetration or range but often didnt need either to kill and could get through the kinds of chain and leather/hide they were used against) - ie the 4e hunter with his clustered shot attack might even be realistic weirdly enough (its kind of low damage and penalized to hit). Not attacking a zone however which is likely what you're talking about and being uber damaging on those shots is definitely jumping out of realism into Legendary. Call that Paragon in 4e. To give a clue what I would picture making an arrow barrage Mythic? your arrows hit hard enough to smash enemies back 20? feet or slam the...
  • 04:23 PM - Jester David quoted Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    Yes, any character could try this at very limited odds of success. How so? Would you write it so you had a penalty on the jump check? Wouldn't that reduce the overall odds of success and thus negate the bonus conferred by using the pole in the first place? Or would it be a check to use it, which then conferred a bonus? Yes and yes. The class ability and-or the feat serve only to improve your odds of success from poor to very good. Improvement of the chance of success. With the feat/ability you can count pole-vaulting as one of your more reliable tricks. Without it, it's only something you'd do in desperation. A *good* feature does that. And not every feature is necessarily well written. When you have a deadline for putting out 75 feats, sometimes you just need to meet the quota. But then that makes you wonder what the penalty is for trying it without the feat. So that typically adds codification and a rule that needs to be looked up... Pole Vaulting? are we doing it out of combat or in ...
  • 03:20 PM - Imaro quoted Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    (mostly I agree with you but you know I think that DnD magic and DnD combat does not really evoke Sword and Sorcery Tropes well at all) I don't think I necessarily disagree in a general sense... just not a big fan of Howard's Conan as the be all and end all of sword and sorcery (which seems to happen alot when the genre is brought up on these boards) when there is so much more to the genre... also while I can appreciate Howard's work I found Moorcock, Lieber, Saunders and a few other just more to my tastes as enjoyable reads and with less to none of the more unsavory aspects of Howard's writings.

Monday, 12th November, 2018

  • 04:43 PM - Jay Verkuilen quoted Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    Think of it as a circadian rhythm thing <...> Or getting in the groove... <...> Actually that reminds me of the 13A thing of the die which counts through the turns as the battle heats up. I'm familiar with both rationales as well as the Escalation Die. IMO that's an example of a very functional and simple to implement game mechanic that I just don't like. It just feels very forced to me, although I get the point of it, which is to prevent the immediate Nova or the problem that 4E battles often settled down to grinds as monsters and PCs were reduced to at wills. This is to say nothing of needing a milestone to gain magic item uses... bleh. I really hated the milestone in 4E as a player. 13A has a number of interesting ideas and is a much lighter implementation of a lot of the 4E concepts. This is despite the fact that I actually like the rather meta Doom/Momentum mechanic in Modiphius 2D20. In many ways it is similar but it's very integrated into the system and tends to ebb and flow, not just go...
  • 05:34 AM - Jay Verkuilen quoted Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    Sure it wasn't ignored in the design I am saying it was not problematic in play AND milestones were actually to allow people to have longer days if they wanted so basically those and encounter powers allowed how many encounters in a day could be more driven by the narrative and not as much by the daily resource anyway that is how I see it. It allowed you to have spikes in ability. I get what they were trying to do, but I really disliked how blatantly and unabashedly game mechanical the milestone was. That was my feeling with a lot of 4E, though. Ah to a degree off turn actions seem a reminder that the game is in narrative sense a bunch of people all acting at once. Yes, to a degree they do and 5E still has a reaction, but it's much more limited. You only have one reaction for one AOO, dodge, Shield spell, Counterspell, etc. 4E wasn't nearly as limited in that respect. In a campaign I played in, one of the PCs was a bard named Kortuss. His nickname was, of course, "Kortuss Interupt...
  • 05:22 AM - Jay Verkuilen quoted Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    I think having things written down also can inspire good DMs or teach ones that need experience Absolutely. it's a balance between writing so much down you tie the hands of the DM and the players ("I want to do XYX... well, there's a feat/power/class feature/practice for that... sorry") and not having enough to really scaffold new DMs or inspire experienced ones. It's one reason I think the Skill chapter in the PHB 5E is underwritten. They provide almost no suggested or example uses for most skills. An experienced DM can come up with them, but it would often be nice to have a few laid out examples. (I'm sure this is going to draw some aggro.)
  • 05:12 AM - Jay Verkuilen quoted Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    Gygax talked bout it honestly it isnt a new thing to pay attention to the workday it is introduced by having different characters having different scaled resources. (long rest - dailies whatever) Yeah, I guess I should say I don't think it's as big an issue as people think, but resource management is always an issue given the game design and it's an issue with really varying classes' need for resources. In 4e it hardly mattered what workday you had Wizards were still the best Dailies but only by a small amount everyone if the day was known to be short could pull out bigger guns. In 5e its back. The whole "milestone" mechanic was obviously there to encourage longer workdays so I'd say WotC was worried about it then, too. I am curious about this. Those are really sound like they might be corner cases - we have a lot of character classes out now and none of those were phb. <...> Bards can be so incredibly variable could you elaborate? Bards were problematic due to their prop...
  • 04:08 AM - Shasarak quoted Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    I believe we arent talking about good vs bad dms I mentioned earlier when it was brought up that I think balancing the non-combat abilities of paragon and epic heroes with those explicitly defined ones given to casters is not something trivial that one is going to be able to do easily without having recommendations and guidelines nor do I really think a paragraph in the DMG counts... without something more. I think at the heart of the discussion, yes we are talking about good vs bad DMs or at least people like Hussar are. They need something written down that they can point to so that they get to do "the fun thing" whatever that may be. So they dont have to play the "Sir, may I?" game. And I do sympathise. 4e didnt even have if fully functional in my opinion so bringing up that fact just has me shrug and say yes we can do better but 5e didnt. I am not the one to talk about what 5e did well.
  • 02:46 AM - darkbard quoted Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    Something I think about wrt a downed hero is the problem of Party Death Spiral... the party action economy takes a it essentially a way for the Dead hero to take part by using a inspiration almost like they are currently a disembodied lazylord beconning from the other heroes parties memories as flashbacks, some he gives extra attacks to and its like they are raging over his death and other lazylord effects. It might give a player something to do at least for a bit when his character is dead maybe even till the end of this immediate sub arc. That's some pretty creative thinking there, Garth!
  • 01:28 AM - Shasarak quoted Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    Its because its brought up in context where everyone has been accepting the Priest doing it trivially FOREVER (ok not all of us) You are not wrong. I would guess the problem is with the players that dont want to "faff about", they just want Joe back on his feet asap. If you look at the original Raise Dead in ADnD you needed at least a 9th level Cleric to cast it, they could not bring back anyone dead for longer then 1 day per level, the character needed to pass a Resurrection Survival Check and the person brought back needed complete bed rest for as many days as they had been dead. So really it is the type of spell you wanted to cast during your down time anyway. If you want to talk about how bad it got, I remember some of the Epic destiny powers from 4e that started with the line: After the first time today that you die.... I mean not only do you not even need someone else to bring you back, the designers assumed that you were going to be doing it multiple times. Now that was real...
  • 12:59 AM - Shasarak quoted Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    Your assumption here is that every DM would go ahead and create an adventure where you go and wrestle death instead of just looking at the player and saying, "No." Which, IME, is FAR more likely. No, my assumption is that sounds like a cool idea how can we narratively tie that into the story. Then the immediate push back from you that I get is that "you dont want to faff about" actually doing it. In contrast the feedback from Garthanos is that it would be perfect. The acquistion of rituals and practices both in 4e are in story like magic items and the first time you do it I think yes that binding it up in a quest is perfect The knights travel into the other world and recover the Grail is one version of this. So what is it? Do you want to do Epic stuff or do you just want to say that you do Epic stuff. Very, very few DM's IME are going to just drop whatever adventure they've got prepared, and create an entire new adventure which means traveling into some sort of Hell, fighting Cerberus and then wrestling Death. It's just not going to happen. What will actually happen is that the player will say, "I want to wrestle Death" and the DM will say, "You got a magic item for that? No? Sorry, you can't." If the DM did not want to change their adventure then they should have thought through the consequences of killing off a PC. It sounds like it would have to be a real railroad for the DM to keep trying to pus...
  • 12:12 AM - Lanefan quoted Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    From the get go in 4e in the PHB you were exposed to a Paragon path and Epic Destiny and players may think of their characters in terms of that. Quite honestly the most basic Epic Destiny is the Demi-god (and arguably a very sound choice in the game too - recommended by the handbooks). The game at that point help establish some shared fiction. In some sense even ignoring the mechanics became narratively part of how you defeat the Demogorgon in high level and the like. The problem with things like Paragon path and Epic Destiny IMO is that they force players to think way too far ahead at or around the char-gen phase...and that they also put players in the mindset that their PCs are of course going to survive long enough to reach these fine ends. It's an extension of the same issue I had with 3e where players would plan out their PC's whole 1-20 progression and development before the end of session 0, and then expect it to happen. I'd far rather have these sort of things arise naturally out ...

Sunday, 11th November, 2018

  • 08:59 PM - Shasarak quoted Garthanos in post Mike Mearls on how 4E could have looked
    And later mid paragon when this fairly Herakles like hero says I want to save the life of my friends dying wife by Wrestling death perhaps I can just roll with that seeing death idea and get drunk on fancy wines to see death himself I want to challenge him for her soul, exactly 3 days after her death. Perhaps this becomes more balanced when it is gatewayed just like the raise dead ritual - Note late heroic is when the Cleric can plop down expensive incense and raise someone who has been dead for quite a while 100 percent reliably. I dont have any problem with someone wanting to wrassle Death to bring someone back to life. My problem would be making it equivalent to the Raise Dead ritual where you spend 1000gp on incense, make your Athletics check, spend an hour and done. Personally I would much rather make a whole adventure of finding a cave that connects with the underworld, get past Cerberus, sail down the Styx and then challenging Death to a wrestling contest.


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