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Thread: High-Level Play

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wizards of the Coast View Post
    [size=3]What level do you play to when you - re playing Dungeons & Dragons?
    I mostly play 3e, and usually start campaigns at 1st level. We therefore mostly play low-level (1-5), although we generally venture somewhere into the mid-levels (6-12) before the campaign ends.

    Do you go beyond 10th level with a given character with any amount of regularity?
    The last campaign to venture into the high levels (13+), or in fact anything above 10th, was Shackled City, which was 6+ years ago. I'm hopeful that my current campaign will reach approx 15th level before it ends in May. However, I have little to no interest in going into the very high levels again.

    If not, why?
    Four factors:

    1) There's always the possibility of a TPK ending the campaign.

    2) I've found that my campaigns tend to have a limited lifespan - after about 6 months both my players and I are becoming a little restless, and ready to look forward to the next thing. In order to sustain interest for longer, a campaign needs careful planning right from the outset - Shackled City had it, "The Eberron Code" has it, but most of my campaigns tend not to get that level of planning.

    3) Bluntly, the sheer weight of the 3e system starts to grate on me even at quite low levels, and only ever gets worse. Playing in the mid-level range is still a lot of fun, but once the game gets to 10th level or so, it starts to become more trouble than it's worth. Given that I'm already losing interest by that point (see above), there's little reason to fight the system for diminishing returns.

    4) I have a 'rule' that if any one of my significant* players moves away, then I'll wrap up the current campaign before they go, both to give them closure on the story, and also to give them and their characters a fitting send-off. This has caused two campaigns to end, one at 8th level and one at 10th.

    * That is, the guys who were there at the start of the campaign and who have regularly attended throughout.

    If so, what do you want to see your character do at those higher levels?
    All of the stuff in the article seems pretty good.

    My experience with the game with various groups suggests that it would probably be preferable if starting characters were rather tougher (but not necessarily more competent) than 1st level 3e characters, that the power curve should be a lot flatter than is currently the case (but that they should gain something significant at every level), and that they should probably plateau in terms of complexity around that mid-level range. This doesn't mean they shouldn't become any more powerful... but generally that extra power should come by upgrading existing options with more powerful variants and/or replacing obselete powers with new ones.

    Or, heretical as it may be, starting everyone at 6th level and then playing E6 - effectively dropping levels entirely.

 

  • #12
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    I don't think followers and companions should be tied to levels. I've played and DMed games where the party was so far away from civilized lands that when they returned to a city nobody could tell what they were doing.

    Unless people are attracted by the equipment they're using, something else should be used to attract followers.

    That said, the kind of games where players get stronger and hire lower levels to deal with lower troubles is something I've tried and works well.
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  • #13
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    I haven't played many high level campaign. We had one that went on to level 18, starting at level 1. Combat reaaaaly bogged down after a while with players having 4+ attacks each round or 4 attacks and a (quickened) spell. Spells like mass heal also kept combat going. Also the difference between the characters got ridiculessly large. Typically 20 better at spot for the Rogue than the Fighter and so on.

    Most of the campaigns I have done as a DM or Player has gotten to level 7-12. My favourite level is 7. The higher in level you get after this, the more time is spent on game mechanics and less is spent on role playing.

    At higher levels I also do feel less immersed in the game world as everything is so fantastic. The disparity in power between city guards and the player characters is so large the city guards might as well be ants. Being able to adventure in the same area also becomes pretty hard to explain, so you basically have to keep the game moving.
    Last edited by Blackbrrd; Monday, 5th November, 2012 at 11:11 AM.
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  • #14
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    I would like to see the core books cover levels 1-10, and cover them well. To have core "adventurer tier" characters be roughly similar no matter what during those levels.

    I would then like to one or two future campaign sets that cover high level rules unique to those campaign sets released about a year later. One campaign set could be an outer planes guide and campaign where the characters get significant power boosts and fight correspondingly powerful opponents throughout the multiverse (a traditional rising power to epicness progression). Another could be a political campaign set where the power increase beyond level 10 is much more limited, and the focus would be to become lords, kings, or movers and shakers in a more detailed local world (a more "bounded accuracy gritty campaign"). Then for years to come, release ever more campaign sets, or continue to expand on the existing ones.

    I think it would fit the modular nature of 5e well, and allow for varying playstyles and extend the longetivity of the edition.

    So yeah, I think levels beyond 10 should be a future "module" and different modules can present alternate rules for advancing beyond level 10.
    Last edited by Badapple; Monday, 5th November, 2012 at 12:19 PM. Reason: more

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    If you think about things in terms of power or complexity gained as you increase in level, there has always been the exponential spellcasters and the linear others. If they could switch to an entirely linear approach across all levels, I would applaud them. If they went further to a logarithmic approach, I think that would be too far, if the stated multiclassing goal is to allow mixing and matching, only linearity makes sense.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackbrrd View Post
    At higher levels I also do feel less immersed in the game world as everything is so fantastic. The disparity in power between city guards and the player characters is so large the city guards might as well be ants. Being able to adventure in the same area also becomes pretty hard to explain, so you basically have to keep the game moving.
    I hear you, I can't understand why such a high level guard would stay in the city instead of doing more profitable things.

    City Guards should never scale so high.
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  • #17
    Quote Originally Posted by avin View Post
    I hear you, I can't understand why such a high level guard would stay in the city instead of doing more profitable things.

    City Guards should never scale so high.
    I basically agree with you. City Guards should never get really high level.

    But the disparity between them and the PCs doesn't bother me. So a guard is like an ant to the PC?, the guard is still a hero at 2nd or 3rd level to the general populace and is capable of doing his job.

    Now the necromancer king's private guard at his fortress of doom might be higher level. A little.
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  • #18
    I wondering what they imply about cutting back on getting more stuff. If they mean cutting back on getting new options like spells above level 5, and if that also means cutting back on doing things they can do better.

    And I know that many have pointed out that multiple attacks were what slowed down high level play. So does anyone agree that fighters shouldn't have an extra attack at a certain level like they got in the recent playtest?

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    I'm generally in support of this.

    Providing options for playing a different kind of high-level campaign won't hurt. (Well, not much. You might end up spending money on several pages of lame rules.)

    There's nothing saying you have to stop adventuring upon reaching name level - that just depends on campaign style.
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  • #20
    As I mentioned in another thread this LL explains why this packet was so bad, this packet was prep for for high level flavour free level progression.

    They need to find a better way to simplify things then ripping the guts out of classes and removing the cool stuff.

    Legacy idea is interesting, that's the only part I'm pleased with.

    Less progression past 10th level is pure win...for Pathfinder.

    Gaining a level should be exciting, in this packet its not.

    Still when they get feedback from this packet and see how many people don't like it to varying degrees, I'm sure they fix it and reverse the bad choices.

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