D&D Next (5E) Magic Items in D&D Next




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  1. #1

    Magic Items in D&D Next

    Magic items have played a role in D&D throughout the years, and this week Mike takes a look at what the team is planning to do for D&D Next.

    Read Magic Items in D&D Next on D&D Insider here!

 

  • #2
    Seems like the approach I voted for.

    No custom items, no wishlist as default. Every item is a unique thing, that strictly makes you better. Perfect.

    Getting a flametongue once again means something. And topping at +3 seems old school. I dont remember +4 or +5 weapons from actual play in 2nd edition. And my adventures also usually have only +1 or +2 wepons on a more regular basis. +3 or more are very rare.

  • #3
    This approach seems correct. I fear it may lead to very few items in the core book, but I bet the magic item book will be awesome.

  • #4
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    +3 seems high for a cap if the bonuses are pure bonuses.
    If "A" is broken, that isn't a valid reason for "B" to be so, even if they vary in degree.

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  • #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Leatherhead View Post
    +3 seems high for a cap if the bonuses are pure bonuses.
    Yes, and this is why you really should not give out +3 items a lot. Getting such an item should be something epic (even if you get it at first level).

    I think +3 as the maximum for usual weapon seems correct. The only higher weapons I remember was the sword of sharpness, +4 IIRC or the vorpal sword +5... but we only got one of them a single time... and there we were first facing it...

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    First thought: sounds awesome, exactly my preferred approach to magic items.

    Second thought: sounds difficult to do well. Most of the magic items I hand out I custom design. But in doing so, I know the composition of the party, the details of the campaign world, the challenge level of opponents, and expected future adventures. Frex, if I'm planning a mountain climbing adventure in the near future, I'm not going to hand out something that negates the planned terrain challenges.

    Power level is going to be difficult to judge well. Frex the Gorgon helmet from the article. Is it weak or strong for a 5th level character? It's tough to judge, even knowing what the upcoming encounters are.

    It seems like DMG lists of thousands of magic items will be a lot more work to come up with too.

    In any case, I hope they overcome the challenges because it sounds like it will be really fun.
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  • #7
    This approach is only reasonable if they provide a way to account for PC's magic items when building encounters/adventures. But this wasn't addressed in the article. Only a concern that too-powerful items might overshadow a character's own inherent abilities. Which isn't really all that important. Balance with respect to the encounter/adventure-building guidelines is what really counts.

    The random "extras" sounds neat, though. Now that's how random treasure should be done.

  • #8
    I totally like this column, I really hope they will be able to pull it off like mike said in here.

    I just wish that they add random tables for on the fly treasure and magic items generation, here is nothing like the excitement of having the DM roll for the content of a chest right there on the table, one time my friend found a staff of the magi at 2nd lvl because the DM had this streak of "roll on a highe"r table rolls

    And I really like the idea of divorcing magic item bonuses from the core math of the game and camping the bonuses a +3.

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  • #9
    Quote Originally Posted by dkyle View Post
    This approach is only reasonable if they provide a way to account for PC's magic items when building encounters/adventures. But this wasn't addressed in the article.
    I think that's kinda the point. They're not accounting for magic items when building adventures.

    Anyway, it can't be too hard to adjust a character's effective level based on equipment.

  • #10
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    That all sounds good, but...

    I wonder how players will adapt from the 3e/4e model of getting magic items early and often, to the 5e model of getting them only occasionally? I can see that causing a lot of strife.

    I will likewise be very interested to see how they balance a game in which the default assumption is that you won't have items, those items will make you strictly better, and, in reality, every party will have some undetermined amount of magic to hand.

    The 3e model for magic weapons, where they were built by selecting powers from a list was not the problem. The problem was that the DMG (and later the 4e PHB) became a shopping list. Switching to a model where every item is a custom item does not make magic items inherently cooler (since a flaming long sword +2 amounts to the same thing whether the DM builds it from a list or rolls that specific item), but it does make it that bit harder for the DM to go "off book". Of course, it also allows WotC to sell that big book of magic items... (The key to making magic items cooler, FWIW, is to not let the players see the details of the magic items.)

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