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  • Staffan's Avatar
    Yesterday, 01:19 AM
    Hah!
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  • Staffan's Avatar
    Thursday, 21st March, 2019, 11:16 PM
    That's a good point. I read a similar discussion over on the Paizo forums, where someone said something like "Complexity is the currency with which you buy depth," and I thought it was a great analogy. It's very hard to have (mechanical) depth without complexity. You need the complexity to get the depth. But the complexity has to be spent carefully, where you get the most bang for your...
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  • Staffan's Avatar
    Friday, 15th March, 2019, 12:29 AM
    You mean like Signal Boost? Well, Wizards pretty much only have themselves to blame for that.
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  • Staffan's Avatar
    Monday, 11th March, 2019, 01:05 AM
    Running: Princes of the Apocalypse. PCs are now 9th level, have dealt with all the Haunted Keeps as well as one of the Temples and its associated Node (which in theory was way out of their league, but they totally thrashed all the opposition there). Currently on a break while another player GMs. Playing: Mutant Year Zero, set in the ruins of Malmö. We've been at this for quite a while as well....
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  • Staffan's Avatar
    Wednesday, 6th March, 2019, 06:34 AM
    Yeah, having "always evil" humanoids does have some problematic issues. My "favorite" example is Burnt Offerings, the first Pathfinder adventure (back when they were still doing 3.5 adventures). The adventure starts in a frontier town where people have gathered to dedicate a cathedral to some of the gods. The celebrations are interrupted by an attack by goblins, who are described as utterly...
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  • Staffan's Avatar
    Tuesday, 5th March, 2019, 08:19 PM
    I blame 3e's wand of cure light wounds. Its existence and cheap price meant that you could expect to be at full hit points shortly after the end of every fight that didn't bring you to 0 hit points, which in turn made spell slots the primary means of attrition, and those recover with a night's rest. So we might as well recover the hit points as well. 4e actually made things a little more...
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  • Staffan's Avatar
    Tuesday, 5th March, 2019, 08:06 PM
    I count 11 steps in Shadowrun, though you could argue that some of those steps are actually the same step (much like you can mush together different calculations on the same line in physics). I don't count the attacker's choice to attack and how, but I do count the defender's choice of defense. 1. Defender chooses how to defend. 2. Attacker rolls relevant combat skill + modifiers. 3....
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  • Staffan's Avatar
    Monday, 4th March, 2019, 09:56 PM
    If you want to keep to the intended rate intended by the designers, it would be more along the lines of 3 sessions in tiers 3 and 4, rather than slowing it down. Using standard XP awards it takes 10-11 "hard" encounters to gain a level from level 5 to 11. After that, it speeds up to 6-7.
    94 replies | 3219 view(s)
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  • Staffan's Avatar
    Sunday, 3rd March, 2019, 01:00 PM
    Milestone leveling (or checkmark leveling, when you level upon gaining a certain number of checkmarks for accomplishing lesser and greater goals) works best if you're in a pre-determined campaign. For example, in Princes of the Apocalypse the adventure specifies points where leveling is appropriate (mostly after each sub-dungeon). The main advantages is that no-one has to keep track of XP, or...
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  • Staffan's Avatar
    Sunday, 3rd March, 2019, 09:25 AM
    Mike posted back in early January that it was going on hiatus for a while because he had a lot of actual work to do at work. At the time he said it would be for a month, but the hiatus might very well have been extended. He also skipped out on the Heroes of the Vale game, leaving the DMing reins to Todd Kenreck.
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  • Staffan's Avatar
    Friday, 1st March, 2019, 08:34 PM
    Yeah, that was a 1e/2e change. In 1e, fighter/magic-users could explicitly cast in armor, and in 2e they explicitly could not (with the exception of elves in elven chain). 2e also made priest/cleric multi-classing more restrictive, in that the priest/cleric had to abide by whatever restrictions the priesthood had on weapons and armor even if they could use the weapons/armor based on their other...
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  • Staffan's Avatar
    Thursday, 28th February, 2019, 11:21 PM
    Except that for most of the levels where people actually played, XP costs doubled at each level. You needed 2000 XP to be a 2nd level fighter, 4000 XP for 3rd level, 8000 for 4th level, and so on. So the effect was essentially that you were a level behind, and with hit points averaged out between classes (rounding down for each die).
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  • Staffan's Avatar
    Thursday, 28th February, 2019, 10:53 PM
    I think it was more that thief abilities require freedom of movement and perception, so wearing heavy armor would interfere with that. In vanilla 1e, thieves could only wear leather armor, and that was that. In Unearthed Arcana, this was expanded to elven chain and studded leather, but wearing these inflicted some serious penalties to thief skills (up to -30%). The UA version carried over to...
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  • Staffan's Avatar
    Thursday, 28th February, 2019, 09:20 PM
    Actually, they do have a sale on D&D Beyond now, with two codes: BADEYE25 for a 25% discount on one purchase other than the Legendary Bundle. SWEETTEA25 for a 25% discount on the Legendary Bundle. Note that if you intend to buy the Legendary Bundle eventually, getting discounts to products along the way doesn't really help you. When you buy things piecemeal, they reduce the cost of larger...
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  • Staffan's Avatar
    Thursday, 28th February, 2019, 08:58 PM
    Yeah, but since the dead horse is prone I get advantage on my attacks, and that lets me use my sneak attack feature!
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  • Staffan's Avatar
    Tuesday, 26th February, 2019, 07:26 PM
    The way I see the initiative roll is that if the victim beats the assassin on initiative, the victim reacts a split-second before the would-be assassin - not enough to negate advantage from being unseen but enough that the assassin only gets a regular sneak attack. It's basically like shielding your throat with your chin - you'll still get a real nasty cut across the chin, but at least your...
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  • Staffan's Avatar
    Tuesday, 26th February, 2019, 07:45 AM
    I think you are over-interpreting the Assassinate feature. Here's what the PHB says: "You have advantage on attack rolls against any creature that hasn’t taken a turn in the combat yet. In addition, any hit you score against a creature that is surprised is a critical hit." In most cases, Assassinate only gives you advantage on the attack roll, which means you get to sneak attack even if your...
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  • Staffan's Avatar
    Monday, 25th February, 2019, 09:25 PM
    One of my more frustrating experiences as a DM was running the Eberron adventure Shadows of the Last War, precisely because of this issue. One of my players was playing a rogue wielding a rapier and not having much in the way of Strength bonus, instead planning to rely on sneak attack and crits for damage. Here's a list of the stuff the PCs fight in that adventure: Some kobolds A warforged...
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Wednesday, 6th March, 2019

  • 11:00 AM - pemerton mentioned Staffan in post Why the hate for complexity?
    Staffan's post made me think about Rolemaster: 1. Declare attack/defence split. 2. Declare target. 3. Roll d100. 4. Add attack portion of the split declared at 1. 5. Subtract target defence. 6. Cross reference on chart to determine hits taken and crit delivered. 7. Roll crit. 8. Cross reference on chart to determine consequence of crit. 9. Determine total hits delivered (from 6 and 8). 10. Apply hits taken and other crit effects to target. This can get to twelve steps if more than one crit table has to be consulted (which can happen with some RM attack forms).

Friday, 1st March, 2019

  • 12:52 AM - Hussar mentioned Staffan in post Sneak attacking undead and constructs seems wrong
    There was the whole dividing XP between classes thing that meant that multiclass characters advanved real slooow. As Staffan said, you were generally only a level behind, and, depending on what classes you had, you might not even be that. IIRC, the XP for a 10th level fighter made me something like a F8/MU9/Thief10. Hrm, give up two levels of fighter for 19 levels in other classes? Yeah, not really a trade off. :D Funnily enough though, we always played that MU could never use armor. So that fighter/MU was still unarmored. At least, that's how I remember us playing. Maybe that was a 2e thing though? It's been FAR too long since I played 1e.

Saturday, 28th July, 2018


Thursday, 31st August, 2017

  • 09:06 AM - Coroc mentioned Staffan in post Xanathar hint from Crawford?
    Staffan Aldarc Oh now i see the prob, i was in good belief the sorc could get something by converting the level 4 and 5 slots to get more level 3 castings and cherrypicked fireball for its damage and ae potential, but it does not make any sense to use the level 4 slots for that purpose, because you would get less than the 5 sp needed for that new level 3 slot and even with level 5 you would just be on par and better of casting the fireball as a higher level slot. And i see another prob with converting the lower level slots to get 5 sp for a new 3rd level slot, it requires a bonus action and can get really fiddly midcombat. Your sorc PC is constantly confronted with numerical problems. That is maybe an issue which should be fixed somehow for real. But let us see if i was so wrong if we take another example by using level 10 sorcerer and level 5 spells. Asuming you could somehow convert your lower level slots in a meaningful order to always ach...

Saturday, 8th July, 2017

  • 03:42 PM - hawkeyefan mentioned Staffan in post Short rest house rule
    Staffan I don't see any problem with this house rule at all. If it makes your game work better, go for it. My only question is about the difficulty with taking an hour long short rest to begin with. Why are these so hard to come by? Don't get me wrong, I'm all about limiting where and how often my PCs can rest, but I do generally allow them options. So I ask out of curiosity to better understand your need for a house rule.
  • 03:32 PM - Kobold Stew mentioned Staffan in post Short rest house rule
    I think you unfairly drills down on specifics here. ... Why? Because I feel focusing on the 5 to 15 minute difference misses the point. I apologize to Staffan if I seem unfair. I see the core of the proposal that each of the first three rests takes an (increasingly longer) different amount of time. The DMG raises the possibility of 5-minute rests (DMG 267), and says that two a day is about right (DMG 84). The house rule helps to enforce that design constraint, and suggests that the players won't police themselves (i.e. that short-short rests will be abused). If the OP doesn't like hour-rests, shorter ones are fine. What I do not see is what is gained by distinguishing between 5 minutes and 15 minutes for a short rest in most games.

Friday, 7th July, 2017

  • 01:29 AM - hawkeyefan mentioned Staffan in post Mearls on other settings
    ...pective. For every person on the internet complaining about how a setting got ruined, you have ten more who are happy with the setting, and then another ten who don't like the changes, but they just do what they want without worrying about what's "canon". And, then there's this: But, what about changes in that timeline that ran contrary to the themes and character of the setting? Adding druids to Dark Sun came pretty late in the run and was a major change. Dragonlance as another example was massively changed over the course of its run. What constitutes the "themes and character" of that setting? So on and so forth. No matter what WotC does, they are going to get it wrong, at least according to a number of fans. Who are then going to make things unbearable for the rest of us while they take up their torches and pitchforks. I'm sorry, but, I just watched how "reasonable" setting fans are for the past six or so years. I have zero faith. Druids were there from the jump, as Staffan already said. And Dark Sun is actually a good example of a setting that made too many changes. The characters in the Prism Pentad novels pretty much dealt with all the major storylines and faced many of the major villains, going so far as to kill some of the Sorcerer Kings and even the Dragon. Which is fine for the novels. But then the Revised Edition had to run with those changes and re-establish the setting after the novels. And a large chunk of it was garbage. The solution is not to complain about it, although I don't blame people for complaining. But it's not a solution. The solution is to do what you want with the setting.

Wednesday, 7th June, 2017


Tuesday, 17th January, 2017

  • 12:02 PM - dave2008 mentioned Staffan in post Points of Light setting and current cross-over strategy: Round peg in the square hole.
    Just thought I would post this because reading the whole thing is important than just a snippet. Also, as Staffan mentioned: “For Duty and Diety,” pg 57 “The Marketplace appears as nothing more than a huge, sprawling bazaar. It stretches for miles in every direction, with tents and stalls making impromptu roadways through the realm. Gambling halls, drinking tents, and hucksters of all varieties mix here indiscriminately. It’s a place of splendor, but it’s also very, very confusing to a newcomer. The Marketplace Eternal is actually home to four gods of wealth and trade; Waukeen of Toril, Shinare of Krynn, Zilchus of Oerth, and Sera of Aebrynis have pooled their resources to make their realm larger than each of them might have managed alone. Each power maintains his or her own quarter of the realm. Waukeen’s quarter is called the House of Barter, and she eagerly leads the PCs to a wide, busy landing in this portion of the realm. As the group appears, a hush falls over the assembled beings here as they realize who walks among them once more” Emphasis mine
  • 01:22 AM - LordEntrails mentioned Staffan in post New Digital Games Studio announced by the president of Wizards of the Coast
    I said it before, I have meant no hostility, in what I have posted before and what I'm posting now. @Morrus, I also have no problems with books, I thought my exchange with @darjr around post #98 of this thread made that clear. @Staffan, I see no point in discussing theft as a legitimate business option. A consideration, yes, an option, no. @Charles Rampant, I'm not bent out of shape. I'm amused. As Myrddin points out, most of what you ask for is already available. As I pointed out earlier, I find it amusing that people continually make the same complaints yet refuse to acknowledge that options other than what they have envisioned are available. Or maybe I'm wrong. Maybe your ideas of a companion app are something new and revolutionary, but what has been described in this thread fails to describe something new and revolutionary in my understanding. I find discussions on ENWorld interesting. One aspect of that is that people seem to assume hostility here rather than interest or critical consideration.

Sunday, 15th January, 2017

  • 01:03 PM - dave2008 mentioned Staffan in post Points of Light setting and current cross-over strategy: Round peg in the square hole.
    First of all you need to watch you call a troll. I haven't called you any names so try and have a bit more class and don't call me any. I have reported you as well. Secondly: This has already been touched on and I have already explained what this all means in detail so I'm not sure why you are repeating it. No you haven't - at least not in this thread. I may not be familiar with every piece of FR lore, but I have read every page of this thread. In post #44 You said: 1) "homedrew disclaimer" for the Ed Greenwood quote - fine. Pretty weak, but fine. 2) You claimed Ed Greenwood did not support the multiverse with no citation 3) "None of the official products mention anything about Oerth, Krynn, Darksun, or Mystara." Yet @ Jester David and Staffan provide evidence to the contrary - you did not react to that. You also said, "The only thing we have is an older Dragon mag article about Elminster having a get together with Mord and Dalamar and that wasn't even written by Ed Greenwood" Again Jester David provided supporting evidence by Ed Greenwood and you have not addressed that. As expected, when presented evidence contrary to your opinion you ignore it. 4) Not really relevant.
  • 03:46 AM - dave2008 mentioned Staffan in post Points of Light setting and current cross-over strategy: Round peg in the square hole.
    Wow Jester David and Staffan that is one of the best troll beat downs by evidence I have ever seen. The question is, did you remember to use fire? Now I guess we will see what kind of person Corpsetaker is in how he/she responds to your evidence.
  • 01:54 AM - AaronOfBarbaria mentioned Staffan in post Points of Light setting and current cross-over strategy: Round peg in the square hole.
    Thanks for those references Staffan, I couldn't remember where I had seen them and was worried I might have made them up in my own campaigns (which have always embraced the multi-verse approach).

Friday, 22nd January, 2016

  • 09:48 AM - delericho mentioned Staffan in post Could Paizo go 5e?
    As far as I can tell, there are no domains in the SRD that weren't present in the PHB; I don't know what FRCS domains you are thinking of. I was thinking of the ones Staffan linked to. You're right, however, that those come from "Deities & Demigods" (some of them, such as Madness (RttToEE) and Scalykind (FRCS), don't originate there, but that's the book where they're all gathered). Not that it matters... The point is still that fundamentally the development of 3.5 remained closed, and Wizards produced a phenomenal amount of content for the game that was never added to the SRD or quietly Opened like UA. Sure, I agree with that. As always, though, it's worth noting that WotC were never under any obligation to add anything to the SRD. It's really good that Paizo see significant value in open gaming, and I'll list that as one of their strengths, but that doesn't imply that I'll necessarily criticise WotC for coming to a different conclusion.

Sunday, 27th December, 2015


Monday, 16th November, 2015

  • 09:47 PM - pukunui mentioned Staffan in post Forgotten Realms Deities
    hawkeyefan: Yeah, I guess. I think maybe Gond's just on my mind at the moment because the PCs in my Tyranny of Dragons campaign have been running around Baldur's Gate for the past few sessions, and he plays a fairly important role in society there - and there *is* actual evidence of technological progress in that city, since its port, at least, has definitely gone through a bit of an industrial revolution, what with its steam-powered cranes that run on rails and the like. Staffan: Yeah. I asked the same question over at Candlekeep, and someone else pointed out that the Realms had been going in a slightly more technologically-advanced direction under TSR, but it seems that WotC put a stop to that starting with 3e. And yes, Gond is the described as being the god of craftsmen and such, not just invention, but the way he's described in the SCAG seems to put the emphasis back on the latter. For example: "Anyone who is crafting something might say a prayer to Gond to guide the work, but folk know that Gond smiles most brightly upon new inventions that others find useful." It goes on to talk about how Gond's priests "keep journals in which they record ideas, inventions, and innovations discovered in their travels, and take great delight in meeting fellow priests and sharing their finds ... Wandering priests turn their journals over to the resident scribes at such temples, who then record the priests' observations for posterity and the benefit of all." This all m...

Friday, 30th October, 2015

  • 09:13 PM - El Mahdi mentioned Staffan in post Warlord Name Poll
    ...ihari Lord ; @Mistwell ; @MoogleEmpMog ; @Mon @MonkeezOnFire ; @MoonSong(Kaiilurker) ; @MostlyDm ; @Mouseferatu ; @MoutonRustique; @Nemesis Destiny ; @neobolts ; @Neonchameleon ; @Nifft ; @nightspaladin ; @nomotog; @n00bdragon ; @Obryn ; @Ohillion ; @oknazevad ; @Olgar Shiverstone ; @Orlax ; @Otterscrubber ; @Pandamonium87 ; @Paraxis ; @PaulO. ; @Pauln6 ; @Pauper ; @payn; @pemerton ; @peterka99 ;@ Pickles III ; @Pickles JG ; @pkt77242 ; @pming ; @pogre; @PopeYodaI ; @Prickly ; @procproc ; @Psikerlord ; @Psikerlord# ; @(Psi)SeveredHead; @Quickleaf ; @Raith5 ; @raleel ; @Ralif Redhammer ; @Raloc ; @Ranes ; @RangerWickett; @Ratskinner ; @redrick ; @Rejuvenator ; @Remathilis ; @Ristamar ; @RolenArcher; @Roland55 ; @RPG_Tweaker ; @Rune ; @Rygar ; @Sacrosanct ; @Saelorn ; @Saeviomagy; @sailor-Moon ; @SailorNash ; @Saplatt ; @Satyrn ; @Shades of Eternity ; @shadowmane; @sheadunne ; @Shasarak ; @shidaku ; @shintashi ; @Shiroiken ; @SigmaOne ; @sleypy; @sleypy01 ; @SpiderMonkey ; @Staccat0 ; @Staffan ; @steeldragons ; @steenan @STeveC ; @strider13x ; @Strider1973 ; @Sword of Spirit ; @Talmek ; @TerraDave; @TheCosmicKid ; @The_Gneech ; @TheHobgoblin ; @The Human Target ; @the Jester; @The Mirrorball Man ; @The Myopic Sniper ; @ThirdWizard ; @Tia Nadiezja ; @Tinker-TDC; @Tonguez ; @Tony Vargas ; @Tormyr ; @TrippyHippy ; @tsadkiel ; @tuxgeo ; @twigglythe Gnome ; @TwoSix ; @Uchawi ; @Ulorian ; @UnadvisedGoose445 ; @UngeheuerLich; @Us ; @Valmarius ; @Warbringer ; @was ; @wedgeski ; @Wednesday Boy ; @Wik ; @WillDoyle ; @Winterthorn ; @Wuzzard ; @Xeviat ; @Yaarel ; @Yunru ; @Zalabim ; @Zansy; @Zardnaar ; @Zeuel ; @ZickZak ; @ZombieRoboNinja ; @ZzarkLinux

Monday, 27th July, 2015

  • 08:32 PM - steeldragons mentioned Staffan in post What is/should be the Ranger's "thing"?
    Well, nothing I can find in UA says anything bout it. There is the "expanded giant class list" which adds in goblinoid/"giant class" critters from FF and MM2. So, in addition to the [correct] quote from Staffan, UA adds: cyclopskin, dune stalker, flind, gibberling, grimlock, meazel, norker, ogrillon, quaggoth, tasloi, and xvarts. Nothing about DMs adding things beyond this list, though.

Saturday, 2nd May, 2015

  • 03:39 AM - pemerton mentioned Staffan in post Proficiencies don't make the class. Do they?
    ...he major aspect is that they made the ranger unique and gave it mechanics. <snip> To me, the first thing you do when you make a class after creating its story and background is design its 1st, 2nd, and 5th level class features. You define the first few class features that the class uses all the time that others cant and the first upgrade of that.Sure, but I don't think it's reasonable to expect people who want WotC to design them an artificer class to have to either drop that request, or design the class themselves! It wasn't fans of the ranger as a separate class who designed the 5e ranger, after all: WotC did. All existing 5e classes have earned their place because they have more than proficiencies and spell lists to differentiate them. It's not much to ask that any proposed artificer/psion/warlord/whatnot has that, too. no one's proposing anything about what those unique class features should be(@Minigiant has a few ideas). There have been a lot of ideas posted. Staffan seems to me to have given the most detail, using bard as a model for the class design. You seem not to have responded to those posts. People have mostly given reasons why the artificer is not a wizard: no spell book, different spell list, different HD, different proficiencies, different class features (eg infusing items). ThirdWizard gave a pretty comprehensive list upthread. Given that 5e doesn't support "refluffing", and given that 5e sub-classes are additive but not subtractive, these are good reasons to think that the artificer is not a wizard subclass. The claim to be a bard sub-class is cleary stronger, but Remathilis and others have made a flavour-based case against this; and in 5e flavour is integral ("refluffing" is not part of the game). What would the class actually look like? That's for WotC to say, just as, knowing that fans wanted a ranger that wasn't just a fighter with Archery or TWF prof plus some nature profs, they provided a ranger that was its own thing. ...

Tuesday, 28th April, 2015

  • 03:12 AM - doctorhook mentioned Staffan in post Advantage when two allies are in melee with the same enemy?
    Thanks for the feedback, gang! I obviously was confused, and I think Staffan and CapnZapp were exactly correct: there was a rogue in the first party I DM'd for 5E, and I think I mistakenly translated the rules for sneak attack onto the rules for advantage. I appreciate the input.


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Friday, 15th March, 2019

  • 01:45 AM - Charles Dunwoody quoted Staffan in post Emissary Lost: Adventures for the Coriolis RPG
    I didn't mean unfairly screwing the PCs with Darkness Points. By definition, using a Darkness Point to mess with them is "fair" - they brought it on themselves, after all. And in one sense, Darkness Points is just a way of codifying the way GMs have always interfered with things as well as random events/encounters. A D&D adventure about exploring a place might have a table you roll on every so often to see if something happens and if so what. In Coriolis, that's handled via spending DPs. I mainly meant it as a comparison to the risk-taking in MYZ's push mechanic. In MYZ, pushing might hurt you, and if it does it will do so right now. In Coriolis, praying will screw you, but it will probably happen somewhere down the line.. Got it. Thanks for the further explanation. Makes sense.

Thursday, 14th March, 2019

  • 01:10 AM - Charles Dunwoody quoted Staffan in post Emissary Lost: Adventures for the Coriolis RPG
    It's certainly an interesting mechanic. I'm curious to find out more about how well it works in practice, particularly compared to its siblings in the other Free League games: Mutant Year Zero (and, I think, Forbidden Lands) which lets you reroll at the risk of taking trauma and/or damaging your gear. Tales from the Loop, which allows a small number of free rolls per session, and inflicting conditions for using more than that allotment. Coriolis, where rerolls will give the GM the opportunity to screw you over. I also think some of the DP events are undercosted. For example, I could trigger a fight with a really strong melee opponent for a single DP. During the fight, it was very likely that the PCs gave me at least one DP back, probably more. So the end result would be that I would be up a DP or two, and the PCs probably took some damage along the way. I don't have enough experience with the system to say whether that was a problem with the adventure itself, or with DPs in gene...

Wednesday, 13th March, 2019

  • 01:15 AM - Charles Dunwoody quoted Staffan in post Emissary Lost: Adventures for the Coriolis RPG
    I and some friends played The Dying Ship this weekend in order to try the game out (since we'll be playing it at GothCon in mid-April). Could be that the adventure is designed for five PCs and they were four, but the difficulty seemed a bit harsh in many places. In addition, many of the events I as the GM could "buy" for Darkness Points seemed undercosted, particularly one that's supposed to happen near the end. I never felt that the DPs constrained me, really. One thing I'll say is that, much like Mutant Year Zero, the game can be utterly punishing if your dice run cold. Even if you have 6 dice for doing something (which is pretty good for a starting character), you have about a 2/3 chance of succeeding. If you fail, you can get another 2/3 chance by praying to the Icons (and giving the GM a Darkness Point) which in theory pushes the chance up to 8/9... except you've already failed on the first 2/3 roll, so it's really just another crap shoot. I'm not sure what I think of this mechanic ...

Saturday, 9th March, 2019

  • 12:19 AM - TrippyHippy quoted Staffan in post Big Changes in ICv2's RPG Industry Charts, as Pathfinder Drops Off Before 2E's Release!
    How many pages is a characteristic of a well designed game? And in what font size? Anything that takes longer than it needs to, in order to provide a 'basic game' is too long. YMMV but I'd present several games that have made their core books of similar dimensions and have had consumer feedback that has made them reconsider. Champions for example, had to effectively replace their Hero 6th edition with a 250 page 'Champions Complete' book because the game had become considered too unwieldy. Beyond that, if it's chief competitor is getting it's own rules out there in substantially more concise fashion then you'd think someone in the design team would have taken this under consideration. For their sake, one can only hope that they've got a good contigency with a Starter set as, even if it is anecdotally, I know lots of gamers that would automatically be turned off by any D&Desque game merely by mentioning it is a 600 page book. Consider that the most common criticsm levied against Pathfind...

Tuesday, 5th March, 2019

  • 10:16 PM - Tony Vargas quoted Staffan in post Why do people still play older editions of D&D? Are they superior to the current one?
    This is a common mistake, and understandable. I know a lot of 1st edition games that played exactly thus. That impression has led to a whole host of players moving to skill based systems over the decades. Treating the rules of any edition of D&D (OK, other than 3.x/PF/4e/E) as if they were, well, /rules/, is a lamentable lapse in judgment, in that sense. Even 'guideline' is pushing it. In the shell-game of DM Illusionism, the rules are just the shells, their purpose, misdirection. ;P I blame 3e's wand of cure light wounds. Its existence and cheap price meant that you could expect to be at full hit points shortly after the end of every fight that didn't bring you to 0 hit points, which in turn made spell slots the primary means of attrition, and those recover with a night's rest. So we might as well recover the hit points as well. 4e actually made things a little more short-term attrition-based than 3e, because you didn't have nigh-infinite wands to deal with hp loss. Almo...
  • 08:56 PM - Celebrim quoted Staffan in post Why do people still play older editions of D&D? Are they superior to the current one?
    I blame 3e's wand of cure light wounds. I agree. I very quickly banned all divine wands as soon as I noted the issue. Although the CLW wand is the worst offender, the problem isn't specific to it. A quick perusal of the wand, staff, rod options available to clerics in 1e shows that this is a major oversight, as the sort of cheap spell on a stick devices the rules generalization made available just don't exist in earlier editions. This was part of the stack of rule changes that lead to CoDzilla. Other major changes included 5' step out of melee while spell-casting, no casting time, chance to save decreases with spell level, and overcompensation for the relative weakness of the cleric class in 1e (where it was almost strictly limited to being the Band-Aid). However, the offense of the CLW wand was generally overlooked by players of RAW 3.5e because encounter balance was generally set on the assumption of frequent and continuously available healing, and the CLW wand was the only ...
  • 08:47 PM - wingsandsword quoted Staffan in post Why do people still play older editions of D&D? Are they superior to the current one?
    I blame 3e's wand of cure light wounds. Its existence and cheap price meant that you could expect to be at full hit points shortly after the end of every fight that didn't bring you to 0 hit points, which in turn made spell slots the primary means of attrition, and those recover with a night's rest. So we might as well recover the hit points as well. 4e actually made things a little more short-term attrition-based than 3e, because you didn't have nigh-infinite wands to deal with hp loss. Almost every ability that recovered hit points used healing surges, which limited the number of hp you could recover in a day to a large but still finite number. I keep hearing that, but you know what. . .I never ran across such casual use of CLW wands in the 3e games I played in. It was always something people would bring up online (mostly here), but I didn't see it at the table in actual everyday gameplay. I always hear that as a complaint about 3e. . .but like many other "complaints" (elaborate po...

Monday, 4th March, 2019

  • 10:02 PM - DM Dave1 quoted Staffan in post In Defense of Milestone Leveling
    If you want to keep to the intended rate intended by the designers, it would be more along the lines of 3 sessions in tiers 3 and 4, rather than slowing it down. Using standard XP awards it takes 10-11 "hard" encounters to gain a level from level 5 to 11. After that, it speeds up to 6-7. Thanks for the tips. I'll definitely throw that info into the idea soup as I figure it out. I'm inclined to want to have them savor the higher tiers by letting them enjoy each level a little longer, but I certainly don't want those levels to get stale by taking too long.
  • 09:26 PM - Dannyalcatraz quoted Staffan in post Momo is Still Not Real (But Memes Are)
    The only Momo anyone should care about is the one from the novel. Nah. There are other Momos that matter: 1) http://www.letsfindmomo.com https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/81FmrntgR6L.jpg 2) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7tdUCk9pLPw

Sunday, 3rd March, 2019

  • 01:42 PM - Ash Mantle quoted Staffan in post Artificer UA has been released!
    If the wording had been "when you expend a spell slot", you might have had a case. But it's "by expending a spell slot." Summoning the turret takes an action and the use of your smith's tools. You can do this for free once per long rest, or more often by expending spell slots. This is clear as glassteel. If it was intended that just using the spell slots recovered the ability, the wording would be similar to that of the Wild Magic Sorcerer's Tides of Chaos, which reads: Starting at 1st level, you can manipulate the forces of chance and chaos to gain advantage on one attack roll, ability check, or saving throw. Once you do so, you must finish a long rest before you can use this feature again. Any time before you regain the use of this feature, the DM can have you roll on the Wild Magic Surge table immediately after you cast a sorcerer spell of 1st level or higher. You then regain the use of this feature. The equivalent for the turret would be: "Once you use this feature, you can’t use...

Tuesday, 26th February, 2019

  • 08:13 PM - R_J_K75 quoted Staffan in post The New D&D Book Is Called "Ghosts of Saltmarsh" [UPDATED!]
    Monster books are an odd duck. Usually, the mechanical quality of the monsters increase as an edition gets older (because the designers get better at making monsters), but the quality of their concepts go down (because all the good ideas got used early). I never gave it much thought let alone compared them but what changed from 2E to 3E? Think they released more MM in 2E allowing for longer entries thus fleshing out creatures better over the life of the edition? Starting in 3E the entries became more combat orientated and got rid of the other portions that made them unique outside of a combat emcounter. Wish theyd bring that back without doing 12 pages on goblins like the latest Volos Guide.
  • 01:08 PM - dnd4vr quoted Staffan in post Sneak attacking undead and constructs seems wrong
    I think you are over-interpreting the Assassinate feature. Here's what the PHB says: "You have advantage on attack rolls against any creature that hasn’t taken a turn in the combat yet. In addition, any hit you score against a creature that is surprised is a critical hit." In most cases, Assassinate only gives you advantage on the attack roll, which means you get to sneak attack even if your buddies haven't gotten to the target yet. The automatic crit is only against creatures that are surprised. In my experience, surprise is fairly rare, especially when you're moving with a party full of people who are not as stealthy as you. Basically, in order to get the auto-crit you'd have to: 1. Sneak ahead of the party. 2. Avoid detection by the target (Stealth vs Passive Perception, which usually isn't a problem for a stealthy character). 3. Beat the target on initiative (because surprise in 5e works by eating your first action - essentially, the surprised character's action in round 1 is "stop...
  • 12:29 PM - S'mon quoted Staffan in post Sneak attacking undead and constructs seems wrong
    3. Beat the target on initiative (because surprise in 5e works by eating your first action - essentially, the surprised character's action in round 1 is "stop being surprised"). If the target is completely unaware of the attacker at the moment of attack, I'd rule they are not 'in combat' and so they don't get an init roll to avoid the surprise attack. I'd then go to init, with the target no longer surprised at the moment init is rolled (so no double dipping surprise attacks). Occasionally PCs do get prior-to-init-roll attacks even vs aware foes, eg the Primeval Thule 'Ice Reaver' heroic narrative gives move + attack prior to init. I'd allow two lots of surprise attacks in that case.
  • 07:40 AM - Hussar quoted Staffan in post The New D&D Book Is Called "Ghosts of Saltmarsh" [UPDATED!]
    As far as I can tell, because of two reasons: 1. Bleep happens. In the early days of 5e (damn, it feels weird to say that), someone got their hands on a solicitation meant for retailers that had an Adventurer's Handbook hardback in it, meant for concurrent release with Princes of the Apocalypse. That never materialized in that form - instead we got the Elemental Evil Player's Companion released as a free PDF with POD options on DM's Guild. When asked why it was cancelled, the devs said "That was never announced, and we can't cancel something we haven't announced." They've been distinctly more cagey about future releases since. Given the really late release date, my guess is that something has held up the release of this, and you can imagine what these boards would have looked like if we had been told about a March release and then been informed that no, it's going to be released in May instead. 2. Hype. Their marketing team has shown that it's hard to maintain interest in a future produc...
  • 07:39 AM - Azzy quoted Staffan in post The New D&D Book Is Called "Ghosts of Saltmarsh" [UPDATED!]
    I heard it was just outside Balic. I thought it was Northeast of Specularum.
  • 06:52 AM - ClaytonCross quoted Staffan in post Here Are The Most Popular D&D Feats (War Caster Leads The Pack!)
    This could be an issue of presentation. Imagine the following: 1. I'm playing a Vengeance Paladin, making liberal use of spells like hunter's mark or shield of faith. But when I get hit, I often lose concentration and have to re-cast the spells. 2. I look for ways to improve my Concentration saves. I find Warcaster with its "You have advantage on Constitution saving throws that you make to maintain your concentration on a spell when you take damage." That's just what I was looking for. 3. I do not find Resilient, because I'm looking at something that makes me better at Concentration, not something that makes me better at saves. Why would I need something that makes me better at saves? I already have Aura of Protection! (Also, please consider using paragraph breaks. Your posts are a bit hard to read with big walls of text.) Great answer thank you. I could see how Resilient (con) might not click in the mind of newer players as effecting concentration effects or stacking with the palad...

Monday, 25th February, 2019

  • 05:51 AM - jimmytheccomic quoted Staffan in post Odyssey of the Dragonlords Player's Guide is Free!
    This looks really cool. This seems to be a setting designed to tell a particular story with the PCs at the center of it all and which will likely leave the setting forever changed. That's pretty cool when compared to most published settings which seem to be more static affairs and where any large-scale change is done off-screen by NPCs. That's why I'm excited about it too! I love the idea of Bioware producing these "One and done" settings built for a specific, fresh campaign.
  • 12:04 AM - Carmen Sbordone quoted Staffan in post The New D&D Book Is Called "Ghosts of Saltmarsh" [UPDATED!]
    The only part of U1-3 that sets them in Greyhawk is in the half-or-so page about the town of Saltmarsh, which ends with: "On the WORLD OF GREYHAWK™ map, Saltmarsh is placed in the southernmost part of Keoland, at the western edge of hex U4/123." Were it not for that sentence, and a mention of Nystul and Tenser, there would be nothing about these modules that ties them to Greyhawk. They would work equally well in Forgotten Realms or Eberron. I'm not sure how well they'd work in Dragonlance since I'm not familiar with that setting. You'd have to work a bit to make them fit in Dark Sun, though. Its still a greyhawk set. Its STILL the strong pattern of taking stuff from greyhawk to FR. IT is VERY MUCH a greyhawk module

Sunday, 24th February, 2019

  • 10:43 PM - Parmandur quoted Staffan in post The New D&D Book Is Called "Ghosts of Saltmarsh" [UPDATED!]
    Half* Yawning Portal and half rules for nautical stuff. * Probably more like 75/25, but whatever. Yawning Portal had an extensive section about the Yawning Portal, wouldn't expect much more than that. The inclusion of the Dungeon magazine Adventures is the interesting surprise here.

Friday, 22nd February, 2019



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Staffan's Downloads

  Filename Total Downloads Rating Files Uploaded Last Updated
Bardificer - An Eberron-style Artificer based on the Bard class
Like many others, I was not happy with the artificer-as-wizard-tradition offered by Wizards of the Coast, because I thought it was too far off what the Eberron artificer was in 3e. So I made my own, based on the Bard class. Many of the class features...
343 +1 1 Monday, 23rd March, 2015, 06:14 AM Monday, 23rd March, 2015, 06:14 AM

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