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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Today, 03:23 AM
    "Balanced at the Encounter" just means "pacing doesn't matter." Even 4e didn't go there, though the closely-related 7th ed of Gamma World did, and it worked pretty well, actually. Any indication PF2 wants to go there?
    13 replies | 513 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Today, 02:24 AM
    You have a choice of rules to use (or not): Carrying capacity, it's 15 lb/STR, if the fighter's gear & the other character & his gear exceed that, he's pushding/dragging and his move drops to 5' - otherwise fine, this is the simple default for carrying stuff. Encumbrance ("Variant"): Up to 5lb/STR he's fine, but it's unlikely a medium ally is under 100lb, which'd be the limit for 20 STR. ...
    7 replies | 166 view(s)
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  • Arilyn's Avatar
    Today, 01:14 AM
    It's very common with new players because they are thinking about iconic characters and/or they want to get the game right. With more experience many will try more novel combinations. Some won't because of wanting every perceivable advantage. And because..D&D. And yeah, dwarf wizards are awesome.😊
    22 replies | 501 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Today, 01:13 AM
    Sounds plausible (that he'd like a mechanic like that), 4e had a lotta* re-rolls, from the notorious Elven Accuracy on, and it seemed like there were just more of 'em after he took over. In particular, the Avenger had a special ability that was "make two attack rolls and use either result. … If another effect lets you roll twice and use the higher result when making an attack roll, this power...
    15 replies | 596 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Today, 12:51 AM
    Tony Vargas replied to OSR Gripes
    I may still be stuck in the idiom of the D&D Pedantry Thread, but it seems like there's a whole lotta RPGs that don't particularly fit between those. Good to know.
    227 replies | 7233 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Today, 12:25 AM
    My memory's bad, but I'm fairly certain that the "Summer of 1999" occurred /before/ "the early 2000s." (I mean, I've been "fairly certain" and turned out to have been wrong, before, so y'all might wanna to double-check.)
    81 replies | 2696 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 11:29 PM
    I suspect that'd wear you out. ;) A quick search of some modern archery guidelines, and, yes, you increase wear on a 'natural material' bow if you leave it strung a long time, apparently even a few hours is worth avoiding. Apparently, a strung bow is under tension and a bit dangerous if the string or stave breaks, too. More detail than D&D generally goes into with weapons. Adventurers...
    66 replies | 1703 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 11:18 PM
    They've had more or less mechanical impact in some eds (and I'm sure, some places/groups/etc back in the day, when we were a less disunited-by-the-internet, merely more diverse, community). Obvious examples of early alignment mechanics are alignment requirements for classes, damage for touching an artifact that doesn't match your alignment, detect this and know that, etc... 3e peaked, with the...
    23 replies | 525 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Yesterday, 10:46 PM
    In all seriousness, I was just reading a story last night that refered to a female-presenting android as a gynoid. And it looks like that's a thing. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gynoid
    8 replies | 390 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Yesterday, 10:41 PM
    Absolutely. That is completely clear in the PHB. It's not that you can't take a long rest, it's that you don't gain those benefits from it. That a long rest can be taken even at 0 HPs isn't a question if you read the PHB.
    98 replies | 2047 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Yesterday, 10:39 PM
    There's benefits from a Long Rest, and then there are things that happen because a long rest was taken, of which could be a benefit. Let's try this. Akar and Brandar are cursed, they lose two point of strength after each long rest, for three long rests. Two long rests past, and at the start of the third one Brandar has been reduced to zero HPs. The long rest finishes. The curse kicks...
    98 replies | 2047 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 10:24 PM
    No expert, but I've heard yes with regard to the bow. But I'm fine with arbitrary. Medieval rossbows, IIRC, weren't like guns - there's no safety, the bolt can just fall out, etc...
    66 replies | 1703 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Yesterday, 10:05 PM
    You are conflating the specifically laid out benefits of a long rest, with a benefit that happens because a long rest has passed. They are not the same. The benefits of a long rest are clearly laid out in the PHB on page 186. The vampire's bite is not part of that. Rather the description of the max HP reduction for the vampire has a condition for when it returns. "The reduction lasts...
    98 replies | 2047 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:59 PM
    If every single mechanic is upturned, then it's hardly just a re-boot to re-start the supplement cycle, is it? Sounds more like substantive change.
    147 replies | 10059 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:56 PM
    I actually kinda like common. In general, things seem more fantasy (or mythic, perhaps) to me, if everyone can talk to everyone else. You could conceive of Common as just "the gift of language" in the sense of communication, it's not just a language everyone strangely learns, it's the language everyone who can speak at all, can speak by default. All other languages would then be...
    23 replies | 525 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:46 PM
    Atk Bonus + d20 >= Def Bonus + d20 is the same mathematically as: Atk Bonus +d20 -d20 >= Def Bonus d20-d20 is a bell curve. So it really changes the odds and the differance that a +1 make depending on where it is in that curve. If your attack and the defense are the same, the first +/-1 will grant a 5% bonus. But if they aren;'t the same, +/-1 will offer smaller change. And asymetic...
    126 replies | 3970 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:34 PM
    You bank the fire before you go to bed, uncover the coals in the morning, add kindling, and blow on it. IDK why I happen to remember that, but it's actually a good example. If I didn't, your character would be screwed trying to start a fire in mundane domestic setting without a flint & steel, D&D-matches (tindertwig?), or, well, since this is 5e, Firebolt... ...so not really screwed...
    84 replies | 3119 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:23 PM
    There is the important act of stringing the bow, you could make that an Action, and require it be un-strung to stow (only slightly arbitrary). If you also impose more plausible RoF on crossbows and slings, that'd about take care of projectile weapons as fast-swapping alternatives to melee.
    66 replies | 1703 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:23 PM
    When a mommy gnome and a paladin love each other very much, they hug and 9 months later a rapier is born.
    126 replies | 3970 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:11 PM
    I blame Elan... ...OK, and every version of the Bard class that preceded him.
    9 replies | 345 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:07 PM
    Don't mind me, I'm just being pedantic... "How the /Hell/ is it you speak Infer-" "... oh, nevermind, answered my own question, really." But it doesn't specify if that that's oral route, IM, naso-gastric, IV, topical, suppository...
    126 replies | 3970 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:57 PM
    Tony Vargas replied to OSR Gripes
    Or that, yeah. Actually, now that you mention it, my second 4e character was an "old-school high-elf fighter/magic-user," he was a wand wizard, and he did explain his Scorching Burst as "an old Wand of Fireballs that doesn't work like it used to." (There was, in that campaign, a conceit that magic had historically, or pre-historically, worked as it had in prior eds, so I got to lampshade the...
    227 replies | 7233 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:40 PM
    As a side note, your players are right. It's right in the PHB under the description of Healing Potion (pg 153). "Drinking or administering a potion takes an action.". This is also echoed to be true for all potions in the DMG, page 139.
    126 replies | 3970 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:31 PM
    Except that regaining the maximum HPs is not a function of a benefit of a long rest (which requires 1 HP), rather it's the function of the Vampire's Bite where they come back after a long rest is taken. You can definitely take a long rest, even if you don't gain benefits due to having less than 1 HP.
    98 replies | 2047 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:21 PM
    I'm getting a sense of deja-vu here... … yeah, it's like it's 2003 and someone's going on about the 'cash grab' … ...which went on to command such loyalty from fans that Paizo has been selling PF1 to that base for an extra decade past it's end of life. ...so, yer say'n PF2 could be Paizo's 3.5!
    147 replies | 10059 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:20 PM
    Moderate agreement - you will often see races that have a modifier paired with a class that uses that ability. It doesn't have to be +2. (If it did, you wouldn't see any variant humans, and I think they are the race I see the most.) With a 15 accessible both point buy and standard array, and 16 and 17 both giving the same +3 modifier, I see a lot of 16s around. This is why I like how 13th...
    22 replies | 501 view(s)
    7 XP
  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:07 PM
    Tony Vargas replied to OSR Gripes
    The difference in ease of use is certainly there, that's been the game's direction the whole time, it's one thing the WotC era hasn't deviated from. Maybe it was just 'pervasive' that threw me. Because, yeah, neo-Vancian is way more versatile than old-school Vanican, and way less limited in in-combat used. OTOH, the breadths of spells isn't as great, and some of them are, well, 'less...
    227 replies | 7233 view(s)
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  • Blue's Avatar
    Yesterday, 07:52 PM
    You definitely wouldn't want to go up to 12d12 - if you rolled max it would be gross... ...(waiting to see if anyone gets it)...
    21 replies | 598 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Yesterday, 07:50 PM
    I have a new RAW interpretation I believe holds up. Unfortunately it does not agree with your DM's ruling so far. 1. Just having 0 HPs means the character starts making death saves. There are a few circumstances where it could also mean death - disintegrate, took massive damage, etc. But those are exceptions - 0 HP is not death. Three failed death saves or another killing effect is death....
    98 replies | 2047 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 07:16 PM
    "Good night everybody!" - Yakko Warner
    24 replies | 896 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 07:13 PM
    Tony Vargas replied to OSR Gripes
    Ok... Magic has always been /so/ pervasive in D&D. It's an infinitely-renewable, daily (or 4hr-nap) resource. You kill a few monsters, one of them'll eventually drop a magic item. There's /fewer/ items, in theory, in 5e, and not really a lot more spells/day (and fewer spells overall)… … and then there's cantrips, which seem to freak people out, but if you've played with Warlocks and...
    227 replies | 7233 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 06:36 PM
    Tony Vargas replied to OSR Gripes
    Definitely. I played 3e & 4e each for their full runs. 5e was like coming back to AD&D, in contrast. If I'd never left, it'd seem radically different, because I'd be noticing all the little (and huge) technical differences, rather than the broader similarities, the ways in which the game had changed, rather than ways it changed back. /The/ major thing, IMHO, is the privilege of the DM...
    227 replies | 7233 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 06:25 PM
    My 3.x group always did that. One of the more extreme ways I've ever seen of dealing with a bad HD roll at level-up, was to repudiate the level. That's how the player put it "I do not accept that roll! I repudiate the level!" I was Ok with it, his fighter dropped back to 2nd, and she ultimately made it to 4th (with less disappointing HD rolls on the way)… ...she was, BTW, one of those...
    5 replies | 270 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 06:14 PM
    Tony Vargas replied to OSR Gripes
    And, at high level, in 5e, they get a lot safer, which is /also/ similar to 1e, as you accumulate hps and get better saves and more protective items and more spells to negate/reverse bad things happening to you. While the details of the systems are quite different - 5e has bigger hp/damage/healing numbers, 1e has much more significant scaling on d20 targets (which it used moreso than bonuses,...
    227 replies | 7233 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 06:06 PM
    OK, that is just too good an observation to just XP and tacitly agree with. Yes, I totally get that, and agree it's very much a thing. I kinda alluded to it in the OP, with how you'd build a fire in the absence of any knowledge/wisdom Nature or Survival skill ("...you'd describe exactly what you do, and if you & the DM were in the same boyscout troop, probably succeed"). Because another...
    84 replies | 3119 view(s)
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  • Fanaelialae's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:57 PM
    We always used, DM rolls against you for HP and you take the higher number.
    5 replies | 270 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:43 PM
    Sharpshooters'd use finesse weapons as melee backup. The way STR characters use heavy thrown weapons as ranged backup. Which, I think, illustrates the issue. Heavy thrown weapons are a pretty serious downgrade from archery. Rapiers, as the OP points out, are not a downgrade from longswords, really, at all. This is D&D. Magic is supposed to be just better. Not the worst idea I've ever...
    66 replies | 1703 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:32 PM
    There are no new ideas. It certainly /did/ it badly (if at all) in '93. Since 3.0, it hasn't been so bad, mechanically (OK, diplomancers were pretty horrid), in theory, if DM's'd use the mechanics, and players'd respect them when they didn't break their way... …/IF/. If not, well, machete, gasoline. Problem solved.
    84 replies | 3119 view(s)
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  • jmucchiello's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:11 PM
    Kaodi, can you give us a list of what we picked up? I assume the pistol Zyzzy picked up is a "semi-auto pistol, tactical" from the rulebook. But she also stacked the other three weapons near the entrance. If they have any kind of armor, we would probably strip them of that too. And if we are tracking ammo, how much ammo is there? How much is still in each weapon?
    104 replies | 3963 view(s)
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  • jmucchiello's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:03 PM
    I just leave the pbf forums in an open tab all the time.
    429 replies | 14724 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:02 PM
    Tony Vargas replied to OSR Gripes
    There was no CR in 1e. You could totally face orcs (or heck, gnolls, zombies, an ogre, etc) at 1st level. ('Face' not necessarily to be taken literally.) Part of the appeal, I should think. (Of course, CR /guidelines/ don't prevent you from facing an Ogre - or disinterested dragon - at first level, they just wave a red flag at the idea.) So it's an Orcs to Orcs comparison. Orcs just have...
    227 replies | 7233 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 04:34 PM
    Tony Vargas replied to OSR Gripes
    The logic seemed irrefutable to my 15yo self. ;) "So, hey, Tony, it says here that peasants have 1-6 hps and or '0th' level." "Well, yeah, they're not as good as characters with classes, they don't have levels, but they do have some hps." "Right, but before you have a class you don't have a class, right?" "I guess." "So my magic-user, before he became a magic user, he had 1-6 hps." "That...
    227 replies | 7233 view(s)
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  • Ralif Redhammer's Avatar
    Yesterday, 04:33 PM
    I totally agree. As much as it’s super-abstract, I still prefer it to systems that have you take increasing penalties as you get injured. It’s completely elegant in its simplicity. I’ll add Shadowrun Anarchy’s Glitch Die mechanic. You don’t have to use it, but it’s a gamble if you do – your action could be wildly successful, or go totally off-rails, depending on this single die. I much prefer...
    15 replies | 596 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 02:51 PM
    Tony Vargas replied to OSR Gripes
    Well, or the alternative wasn't. More likely, it was another thing that varied a lot. I recall Max 1st HD (because Rangers) being a very common variant. One group even figured that, at 0 level, everyone, even mere peasants, got 1-6 hps, so your first level HD should add to those. The version of that I encountered was the "brevet" - start at 2nd, but 0 exp...
    227 replies | 7233 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 02:39 PM
    A standard game with no optional rules turned on. Feats & MCing are explicitly optional. You don't ban them, you just dont bother opting into them.
    66 replies | 1703 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Fanaelialae's Avatar
    Yesterday, 01:35 PM
    I played a monk with the Hermit background who had an 8 Int. Despite my low intelligence, I focused heavily on knowledge based skills, even taking two feats that granted extra skills. He was a former street tough who had angered the wrong people and gone on the run. By pure chance, he stumbled across a lost elven library and it's caretaker, and spent over a decade studying under the...
    65 replies | 1789 view(s)
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  • jmucchiello's Avatar
    Yesterday, 01:04 PM
    Zyzzy was holding the weapons that were dropped. She left the ones she could not use in a pile not far from the entrance. (She now has a light pistol. I should update her inventory.)
    104 replies | 3963 view(s)
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  • Fanaelialae's Avatar
    Yesterday, 12:18 PM
    Rangers get 3 skills from class. 2 from background. Race grants 0 to 2 additional skills. Along with my additions to the "required" list, we're at 6 skills total. Which is one more than the ranger normally gets, including background, unless they are one of the three races that grant extra skills. Even then, only the half elf actually gets to pick a skill of their own choosing. I'll say it...
    65 replies | 1789 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Fanaelialae's Avatar
    Yesterday, 11:46 AM
    What about Athletics? Hard to imagine a ranger who can't climb a tree or swim across a river. What about Animal Handling? Calming a spooked horse seems like it should in their wheelhouse. Include these skills on the "required" list and the ranger player doesn't get to make any choices regarding skills whatsoever. That makes each ranger a cookie-cutter character wrt skills. Which is rather...
    65 replies | 1789 view(s)
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  • jmucchiello's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:30 AM
    I'm enjoying the RP. I'll poke the others: Thateous TallIan
    429 replies | 14724 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:29 AM
    What do rapiers have to do with caster supremacy, Monty Haul, treasure hunting, pixel-bitching, 5MWD, magic-item Xmass trees, Vancian spell-grenades, d20s, Fruedian psionics, 10' poles, white-room DPR calculations, cursed magic itens, 30mm lead pewter figures labeled 25mm, rules lawyers, Killer DMs, home-invasion-robbery, LFQW, name recognition, 20-level builds, spiked everything, plant/reptile...
    66 replies | 1703 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 04:29 AM
    Tony Vargas replied to OSR Gripes
    I was more than half expecting I'd made some dumb math or table lookup error. ::shrug:: CR: 1/2. I already mentioned that, yes. You want slower pacing, it's readily doable, no heavy rules-rewriting called for.
    227 replies | 7233 view(s)
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  • Arilyn's Avatar
    Yesterday, 04:12 AM
    I recently made a human wizard. She has a 16 Dex and 14 Int. I focussed more on dex because I'm making a dagger wielding fighter/ wizard, without the need for multiclassing. As a variant human, she took light armour proficiency, which also let me up her dex by one point. She wields two daggers in combat and has a good AC. Because her Int. is little lower than a typical wizard, she focuses on...
    66 replies | 1703 view(s)
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  • Arilyn's Avatar
    Yesterday, 02:57 AM
    Yes, yes. I'm tired of 18 str. and 8 dex. or 18 dex. and 8 str. warriors. It makes no sense. A true fighter is going to be strong and nimble. Would you really want to enter into battle all buffed up but super clumsy, or very nimble with strength of tissue paper? I know, it's D&D, and D&D often makes little sense, but this one always bothered me.
    66 replies | 1703 view(s)
    3 XP
  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 01:37 AM
    Did you notice the remarkable visual similarity between 4e & PF1 monster stat blocks? With the shading and all? Most obvious difference was purple instead of green.
    13 replies | 513 view(s)
    3 XP
  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 01:34 AM
    The 4e Fighter's "Combat Superiority" OA spoiled the target's movement if it hit. They're mark-punishment interrupt, OTOH, did not, but could be in response to a shift or attack that didn't normally provoke. Consensus was the features made them very 'sticky,' even by defender standards. It could be automatic when they're in the fighter's Threatened area? Haven't used feats much when...
    115 replies | 6165 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 01:20 AM
    Yes. Play a Gangrel. Take the Flaw "Twisted Upbringing."
    95 replies | 2753 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 01:17 AM
    So we shouldn't mention the Pixie/Storm-Giant?
    126 replies | 3970 view(s)
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  • Arilyn's Avatar
    Yesterday, 01:10 AM
    I like many things from 13th Age as well, including backgrounds, one unique thing and the escalation die. From Fate, definitely aspects. The investigative system in Gumshoe games. The character system in Robin D. Laws HeroQuest. And the passions in Pendragon
    15 replies | 596 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 12:52 AM
    It's Sisyphean, but starting with the familiar concepts of D&D, and explaining the broader alternatives in those terms, would be using it as a baseline, but not assuming it as the only thing. Maybe? There's some of that in "if you'd just master this other system and accept it's paradigm, you'd understand..." Yeah, I can't see it by those mechanisms. Arbitrarily, though, sure. Your...
    651 replies | 16671 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Yesterday, 12:37 AM
    Tony Vargas replied to OSR Gripes
    Well, IDK, compare a simple, iconic Orc, for instance. In 1e, it hits a stereotypical 1st level front-liner in banded/splint & shield on a natural 17, for 1d8 (4.5) damage (0.9 DPR), and as a 1 HD monster has 1-8 hps, and was AC 6. In 5e, it hits a starting-package heavy armor PC in chain & shield (AC 18) on a natural 13, for 9(1d12+3) damage (3.6 DPR - 4.05 if you count the crit on a 20, which...
    227 replies | 7233 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 10:41 PM
    So, maybe piercing just needs to be a lot worse than slashing in some way? Because that seems like a difference, there, too. (Or the versatile blades need to be pierce & slashing, vs the finesse blades being piercing?) Or... …/clearly/ what's missing is ::drumroll:: 1e AD&D style Weapon vs Armor modifiers! Yep. If finesse weapons were good vs light armor and sucked vs heavy, while...
    66 replies | 1703 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 10:20 PM
    Tony Vargas replied to OSR Gripes
    Well, they hit more often than 1e monsters at low levels (and, thanks to BA, keep hitting at least some), and have more hps of their own as you go up levels, so stick around longer, inflicting more damage... ...doesn't sound too implausible. Certainly, I haven't seen any 5e parties breezing through 21-encounter days.
    227 replies | 7233 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 09:55 PM
    Tony Vargas replied to OSR Gripes
    That's not a bad assumption, though character death is hardly unknown in D&D (to put it mildly), at some point, you reach some sort of, IDK, homeostasis, that results in PCs surviving & leveling rather than dying and being replaced. In 5e, scaling (and some class differentiation) was shifted from d20 modifiers (or targets in the case of the classic game) to hps & damage. Some of that shift,...
    227 replies | 7233 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 09:32 PM
    Tony Vargas replied to OSR Gripes
    To be clear, the balance of the turn being used in resting was the obscure rule, the d3 for 'binding wounds' during that rest was very much a variant - a Len Lakofka variant, I'd guess, at least, a lot of 'em that got heavily used in my area were his, straight from his Dragon articles. Per-hour doesn't ring a bell as loudly. Per turn, does, but I can't recall a specific example, either (also...
    227 replies | 7233 view(s)
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  • jmucchiello's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 09:12 PM
    "It is most likely we will have to fight these yahoos," Zyzzy says flatly, though there is a trace of a smile on her lips. "Let's tie this one up and leave out of listening range. For all we know she has a listening device the aforementioned yahoos are listening in on." She turns to Tara, "The real question is if we really want to risk our lives trying to take possession of rather large objet...
    104 replies | 3963 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 08:18 PM
    Tony Vargas replied to OSR Gripes
    Not a lot more than merely setting short & long rests to different durations. You push out the time scale of the adventure. The bigger difference is table time devoted to bookkeeping, and that's not a /big/ difference, either. Again, folks played the game very differently from place to place & table to table back in the day. 5e shifted most scaling to hps, so, yeah, they balloon. ...
    227 replies | 7233 view(s)
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  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 08:07 PM
    Crossposting. Let's take it to the Pedantic complaints thread, and get you some XP to go with that laugh. ;) Hey, and that explains why Gimli was so into her. Well, makes it at tad less creepy. …
    126 replies | 3970 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 07:57 PM
    Let's take it to the Pedantic complaints thread, and get you some XP to go with that laugh. ;) Hey, and that explains why Gimli was so into her. Well, makes it at tad less creepy. Edit: wrong thread... ...cross-posting...
    95 replies | 2753 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 07:48 PM
    Tony Vargas replied to OSR Gripes
    "Something akin to" is, I think, a pretty low bar. Admittedly, the balance of a 10 minute turn is a lot less resting than 5e's one hour. But it's still a rest, and it's still short. Some variant I vaguely recall even let that 'bind wounds' assumption heal d3 hps. Which, at 1st level, in particular, was nothing to sneeze at. Not spells in any standard class, now, but there were the occasional...
    227 replies | 7233 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Ralif Redhammer's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 07:45 PM
    Galadriel was a gnome. :D No, really. At the risk of "well, actually'ing" you, in some of Tolkien's earlier drafts, the Noldor were referred to as gnomes. Galadriel was of the Noldor, ergo...
    95 replies | 2753 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 07:35 PM
    Well, in the sense that flames won't stop it from regenerating... ;P ...we'll see... That's an interesting question. 5e has more than a few little details lifted straight from 4e, and more than a few more re-named, bowdlerized, or otherwise reduced to an acceptable post-edition-war level. The result is /both/ absolutely nothing like 4e, and very similar to 4e. So that complicates the...
    13 replies | 513 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 07:15 PM
    Tony Vargas replied to OSR Gripes
    Not a great point, actually. Old-school did actually have something akin to a 'short rest.' Play progressed in 10-min 'turns,' and if a combat didn't take 10 rounds, the balance was assumed to be spent resting, binding wounds and repairing gear. And, recovering hp & spells 'overnight' is a mere simplification of the complicated rules for recovering spells (requiring anything from 4 to 8 hrs of...
    227 replies | 7233 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 06:06 PM
    Nope. The readied character would have to either move ahead of the one he was trying to move with, then ready, or take the readied action and move only 30' to the other's 60. To be fair, Delay doesn't do it, either, the other guy moves, /then/ you move right after. It's one of those things you just need to common-sense hand-wave. (sorry, I forgot the point of the thread there for a moment) ...
    126 replies | 3970 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 05:47 PM
    Back in the time of one of the TSR-edition D&D editions they came out with this in Dragon magazine. It worked well from traps and such, but it made some general environmental hazards impossibly deadly. If we're already accepted the game assumption that you can be hit several times by a battle axe, roasted by a dragon, and you're still fighting, then the realism of a 40' fall from failing a...
    126 replies | 3970 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 05:43 PM
    I am as well in 5e. I was more saying that I enjoyed that there was that guidance in which way to make ruling which could have been helpful.
    98 replies | 2047 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 05:41 PM
    While I don't disagree that a wizard could learn magic & have his spell book while remaining ignorant of Arcane lore outside the practical necessities of his trade, I can't agree that opens up a wide variety. The wizard is a bookish, Vancian/Hermetic magic-user, no matter how you tweak or polish it. Casting arcane spells without all that training and that spellbook was broken out to the...
    65 replies | 1789 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 05:39 PM
    Not unless one of the characters gives up all of their actions. Try you and a friend (or several) walking down a street while each doing something. It does not require that everybody but one give up all of their actions to walk in a line. See also: marching band. (Taking an action for CHR (Perform).)
    126 replies | 3970 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 05:35 PM
    The studs make catcalls at the elves (can't tell what gender they are, so whistle all) and flex. A lot. Oh wait, wrong context.
    126 replies | 3970 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 05:29 PM
    Yes, there's several examples where the effect or hit line just creates an 'area' and avoids the Zone keyword.
    115 replies | 4816 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Tony Vargas's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 05:28 PM
    Heh. Who can forget those iconic gnome characters in LotR…? What were their names again? That's probably a big part of it, yes. Any race other than human can tend to fall into racial stereotypes, the character becomes about the race (either conforming to or challenging stereotypes), rather than about the character.
    95 replies | 2753 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 05:19 PM
    Blue started a thread Finesse rebalance
    In another thread there was an aside about rapiers, with part of it being: So I started to write up a serious reply about how it's not that they were perfect, but that others were not: First thing I realized is that I was derailing a thread, so I didn't post it. The second thing is that the comment about how finesse is such a game changer compared to other keywords has a lot of...
    66 replies | 1703 view(s)
    5 XP
  • Ralif Redhammer's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 04:58 PM
    That’s how I took it. Will Byers went through some terrible trials those last two seasons. Also, he’s switched from being a player to being a DM. After being trapped in the Upside Down and then possessed, he’s probably in need of some sort of control in his life, someplace safe. I thought the passing of the red box to Erica was very sweet.
    49 replies | 1960 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 04:51 PM
    One concept from an earlier edition of D&D was specific overrides general. If that's the case, the specific of the spell returning at 1 HP should overcome the general rule that HPs can not exceed max HPs.
    98 replies | 2047 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 04:48 PM
    The impossibility of "he and I move while staying together" in combat. Taking out the delay action just made some simple concepts impossible. How the skill system enforces certain divisions. For instance, mechanically I can't model a character who is good at interacting with high society, from gossip to blackmail to formal dancing to heraldry, but are lousy at the same times of interactions...
    126 replies | 3970 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Ralif Redhammer's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 04:48 PM
    I like gnomes, but this is definitely a problem. There’s such a palimpsest of identities to the gnome that it can be hard to say what a gnome actually is. As to race mattering in my campaigns, I think much of that falls to the player. Is the player really into their dwarven identity or is it just a collection of bonuses and abilities to them? My players definitely impact my DMing style, and I...
    95 replies | 2753 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 04:34 PM
    WaterRabbit - I do agree with your points. I just wanted to point out that XCom is a lot like D&D 4e in having a lot of "this exact square vs. that square" in terms of positioning, cover, line of sight and effects. It needs a high level of precise, tactical control even if the system is less complex. I'm not saying this to refute your point, just mentioning that example has some differences...
    40 replies | 1540 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Blue's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 04:30 PM
    PoE2 changed the spell system from the original PoE to all spells refreshing after each combat, so it wasn't a problem if the AI burned through spells in an encounter. The original PoE had spells recover on a (long) rest like D&D, and there real time with AI was an issue - either you let the AI use them and would burn through them quickly, or you didn't in which case it was effectively turn...
    40 replies | 1540 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Ralif Redhammer's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 04:28 PM
    Also when I first went off to college. I went to a place where I knew absolutely no one. Nevermind that playing D&D would probably have helped me make friends, for I was terribly shy at that point in my life. In the last two years, I started running an AD&D game back at home during the summer and had a lot of fun. A bunch of my fellow musicians all discovered that we used to play D&D and...
    21 replies | 565 view(s)
    1 XP
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About Blue

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Date of Birth
September 7
About Blue
Introduction:
I like heavy RP, shades of gray campaigns, both to run and play in.
About Me:
I was an orphan that was raised by wolves in the sentient forest primeval. Later I found out that my father was a god. I only roll 20s. Fnord. I write award winning arias to be sung in languages I have designed. I DO NOT sparkle in the sunlight. I have climbed K2. Uphills, both ways, in the snow. I don't always drink beer, but when I do, it's --- URK.

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Details of games currently playing and games being sought.

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Game Details:
Currently running 13th Age. The younger dragons move with inscrutable purpose, and savage ritual breed a hybrid for unknown reasons. Chains capable of holding the soul of a dragon now find themselves around an urchin, while a sliver of the soul of a dragon incapable of being chained lies in hidden in a young man. The Koru - mountains animated by their Kami - walk the lands, while the Kami twisted by the poisons of the underdark swim to the surface as Living Dungeons. The once dead find new life without regaining it, and the never living find life but not their own. The Orc Lord breeds new orcs with the gifts of elves; the dwarves with their mastery of clockwork and the Victorian/Roman Republic Dragon Empire resist. The High Druid seeks heartwood from the trees holding up the sky - last time a High Druid did a ritual of this magnitude, vampires became slay-able with but a stake of wood. Dark secrets of Ages past surface, but whom will they favor? Who will control them?

Zeppel
My Character:
Currently playing in a homebrew 4e game called Ascendancy of Darkness. Civilization is falling, has mostly fallen - will a misfit band thrown together by magic they don't understand be able to help. I run Smoke, the aging longtooth shifter Runepriest. Run by Dragon magazine author KS.

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My Game Details
State:
New Jersey
Country:
USA
Game Details:
Currently running 13th Age. The younger dragons move with inscrutable purpose, and savage ritual breed a hybrid for unknown reasons. Chains capable of holding the soul of a dragon now find themselves around an urchin, while a sliver of the soul of a dragon incapable of being chained lies in hidden in a young man. The Koru - mountains animated by their Kami - walk the lands, while the Kami twisted by the poisons of the underdark swim to the surface as Living Dungeons. The once dead find new life without regaining it, and the never living find life but not their own. The Orc Lord breeds new orcs with the gifts of elves; the dwarves with their mastery of clockwork and the Victorian/Roman Republic Dragon Empire resist. The High Druid seeks heartwood from the trees holding up the sky - last time a High Druid did a ritual of this magnitude, vampires became slay-able with but a stake of wood. Dark secrets of Ages past surface, but whom will they favor? Who will control them?

Zeppel
My Character:
Currently playing in a homebrew 4e game called Ascendancy of Darkness. Civilization is falling, has mostly fallen - will a misfit band thrown together by magic they don't understand be able to help. I run Smoke, the aging longtooth shifter Runepriest. Run by Dragon magazine author KS.
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Wednesday, 2nd January, 2019

  • 03:39 AM - LordEntrails mentioned Blue in post What solution for "Cantrips don't feel magical"?
    Blue, as you note, damage output is just one way to evaluate class balance. But to concentrate on it is really .... unfortunate. There is so much more to D&D than just combat, and so much more to combat than just damage output. Every table will have to figure this out for themselves. Because the importance of damage output is going to vary at every table, and with each DM, and each campaign, and maybe with each session. In the end, imo, if cantrips don't feel "magical", you need to figure out what "magical" means. Because D&D is a game that involves lots of magic, so "rarity" is a poor definition of "magical", imo. To me, the magical feeling of cantrips is about perception and description. And at my table, to get a more magical feel, I try to get myself and my players to describe magical actions using magical terms. It works for us.

Tuesday, 1st January, 2019

  • 05:35 PM - OB1 mentioned Blue in post Feat: Innate Casting - request critique
    Blue I think this is solid, but it feels a bit too narrow. I think it can be opened up a bit without becoming over powered. Innate Casting Requirement: Character level 7th or higher When you take this feat, choose a 1st level spell that you know which requires concentration. You may cast that spell without using a slot, as if from a 1st level slot. When cast this way it does not have Concentration - you do not need to concentrate, it can not be lost to damage, and it does not interrupt existing concentration. Once any spell is cast using this, you may not use this power again until you complete a short or long rest. If that is too powerful, I think you could say that it doesn't require concentration, but you must still make a concentration check when taking damage to continue the effect of the spell.

Monday, 31st December, 2018

  • 04:34 PM - Maxperson mentioned Blue in post Does Rope Trick Heal?
    Oh! Oh! It's this one! You're adding extra points to make to example unfairly biased to your side! Maybe you weren't paying attention, but it's MY definition that's being discussed here. Blue has been trying to tell me that MY definition applies to Catnap, when it clearly doesn't.

Saturday, 29th December, 2018

  • 10:19 AM - Lanefan mentioned Blue in post If you were able to design your own version of D&D, how would you do it?
    Blue - I think there's something decidedly amiss with your graph. Using the system I suggested, getting any result between 01 and 09 is impossible as those pairings of dice would always be read in reverse (as the reverse gives a number closer to 50). After that, the odds of getting any number should look like a bell curve (though maybe a bit wonky) with its extremes at 10 and 00 and the rather flat high point around 50-51.

Sunday, 23rd December, 2018

  • 02:57 AM - CubicsRube mentioned Blue in post [Homebrew]Differentiating classes for the Social Pillar
    Blue - one of my thought precisely was how advanrage makes higher scores more probable, but doesnt change the bounds of those scores. It also doesnt habe any overlap with proficiency and expertise, which i like The other option is effectively based off the dmg variant of nackground proficiency to allow prof bonus, or even doubling proficiency for those chaeacters already proficient. Expertise would like have to be changed in the system to make it workable. Other systems like shadows of the demon lord dump any kind of skill bonus and instead give their version of proficiency instead. I was thinking about making a seperate ruling for the exploration pillar instead, but i may in fact roll these up into the same area. It makes sense that a sailor would be proficient at perception on the seas, but not in a forest, or a hermit would be adept and stealth in the woods, but not in a city, etc. The more i think about it, the more I'm inclined towards that variant rule instead.

Tuesday, 18th December, 2018

  • 02:53 PM - TaranTheWanderer mentioned Blue in post Houserules for tools
    ...t have a proficiency in an instrument. You'd have Proffession: Musician/Oration/Artist/Actor etc... and you'd choose an instrument. I'd drop Performance all together. I'd drop Proficiency Healers kit and use Medicine (Proffession Healer), so there's no overlap. *** I've skimmed XGtE and would probably incorporate some of the uses but, once again, I'd remove tools-as-a-skill. 5ekyu Regarding uses, I was just thinking they'd lose a 'charge' on a 1- not every roll. But I like the idea of setbacks better. As you say, less tracking of resources. I'm not specifically trying to make Players track resources...I'm just brainstorming ideas. I just like the idea of needing to occasionally resupply. (rations, ammo etc...). Generally, I don't make players keep track unless they will be away from civilization for a long time and needing to track that stuff becomes part of the challenge to survive. Instead I just tell them to spend a few gold and say they've resupplied. Blue Alternately +/-2. It preserves getting advantage/disadvantage elsewhere, but it changes the max DC that can be gotten, which I'm not as fond of. You aren't fond of a straight +2? Maybe, instead, better tools just let you do things more efficiently. Kind of in line with what aco175 is saying. Drop the amount of time it takes to craft or pick a lock or whatever. Outside of adventuring, it lets you do more things with your down time - make more money - craft more stuff. While adventuring, things like picking locks a bit quicker could have a focus if you need to get that door open before the guard comes back - but it's pretty situational. I just mentioned #3 because I like the idea of training(proficiency) giving you more than a mathematical bonus. It opens options that were not possible before. It's one of the few things I miss from 3.5. But 3.5 focused that rule on knowledge checks (DC 10 being common knowledge and anything higher than that would only be known by people...

Wednesday, 12th December, 2018

  • 01:05 AM - Lanefan mentioned Blue in post CHALLENGE: Campaigns that NOBODY would want to play in
    The setting I've had a hard time selling is one set in a low fantasy equivalent of the United States during the time of the War of 1812 with border skirmishes on the frontier as the might of the empire is crushing from the east. Long rifles and canons, Napoleonic sea combat, westward expansion, river pirates.How can you possibly not be able to sell Napoleonic sea combat? That alone makes this worth playing! :) Blue - that declining-levels idea is brilliant!

Tuesday, 11th December, 2018

  • 08:15 PM - Elfcrusher mentioned Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    It’s about one character trying to convince or deceive another. Some DMs like to resolve that with an Insight check, some like to do it with a Persuasion or deception check, some do a contest of both... And, as I noted previously, it's further complicated because we're entangling two issues: PvP and agency. Honestly I think this whole debate would be more clear if we stuck with a scenario where an NPC was trying to persuade a PC. The most important parts of the debate would still be there, without PvP clouding the issue. Earlier somebody said something about @Blue also using house rules, and he responded that "not allowing PvP is a house rule" or something like that. But I think the person meant how he is using skills in general. (Funny how I can't remember now if I said something or it was iserith or Ovinomancer....)

Monday, 10th December, 2018

  • 11:22 PM - iserith mentioned Blue in post Skills used by players on other players.
    Blue: In D&D 5e, one does not "use skills" on NPCs or PCs. They perform tasks. The outcomes of those tasks may be uncertain and carry with it a meaningful consequence of failure. If they do, then the DM calls for an ability check to resolve it. If the task does not have an uncertain outcome and/or a meaningful consequence of failure, the DM does not call for an ability check. These are not house rules. Since a player determines how a character thinks and acts, the outcome of a task made to influence how the character thinks is not uncertain. Therefore, there is no ability check. These are also not house rules.

Friday, 2nd November, 2018

  • 07:50 PM - Hawk Diesel mentioned Blue in post Warlock Maledictions
    I see what you are doing here, and I don't know how to feel about it. I think it is certainly an interesting concept, and does get back to the core of the original Warlock class. That class was all about getting at-will, unlimited spell-like abilities. And so now, in a version of D&D where nearly all casters have some kind of resourceless, at-will, spell-like abilities via cantrips, how might we get back to what made the original Warlock great? So I think making them the master of cantrips is certainly an interesting idea. Allowing them to add modifier damage to cantrips or other battlefield control effects is an interesting idea. But I'm not sure if I necessarily like this idea completely either. As Blue has mentioned, it would make Warlock an appealing dip for any caster that wants to improve the power of their cantrips. Additionally, when we look at the original Warlock, the primary ability was the Eldritch Blast. It automatically increased in power as you leveled, and many of the invocations either changed the shape of Eldritch Blast (either chaining blasts, ranged area of effect like fireball, or within a radius centered on caster) or the energy type used by the eldritch blast. Additionally, you could add effects like charm, stun, fear, ect to the blast. So if we are going to help it go back to its roots, I don't think the way is to find ways to expand the Warlock's access to offensive cantrips. Rather, I think it is to lean into Eldritch Blast. 1) Make Eldritch Blast a class ability. It is no longer a cantrip. No other class can get access to it without the appropriate level dip. 2) The number of rays is no longer determined by character level, but by Warlock level (t...

Thursday, 1st November, 2018

  • 04:09 PM - clearstream mentioned Blue in post Banishing Eldritch Blast
    ...ves +Cha to damage per die of cantrip damage. EB is still slightly better, but the other cantrips will give a better chance of big hits (at the cost of whiffing more often). I think if Agonizing Blast applied to each die of damage, the damage cantrips that have useful side effects would be as good as Eldritch Blast. Fire Bolt would remain over-shadowed due to the damage type (about 80 core foes resist or are immune to fire, versus 1 that is immune to force, not to mention that spells like Absorb Elements have no effect on force). EB and invocations have been central to the Warlock, right from its 3.5ed Complete Arcane version where it was a ray (ranged touch) that did d6s. Hence it is right that commentators are concerned about removing it. Having played with Warlocks at the table for about two years now in 5e, EB spam is standing out as offering less fun than could be available with some adjustment. It seems to hedge the Warlocks in to using it (in part due to few spell slots, as Blue noted), and it also takes a pretty tightly optimised melee class to compete with it, forcing non-Warlock characters into a narrower design-space. (Warlocks have moved up in favoured classes, as measured by WotC, and I think that is in some part due to their sitting in a sweet spot in the 5e design space). Remembering at all times that here I'm talking only about the quality of the game mechanics. The thing is, it feels like Eldritch Blast at the table is a bit better than it needs to be to remain viable. The combination of a target per damage die, force damage type, range, and per bolt bonuses, turns out to be really strong. Over time, the average damage from say Fire Bolt compared with Eldritch Blast sans Agonizing Blast is the same, albeit Fire Bolt is spikier (its damage comes in bigger lumps) and is more often resisted. However, the efficiency of being able to switch targets, and of course Agonizing Blast, make Eldritch Blast much killier. I'm concerned that if all damaging c...

Wednesday, 17th October, 2018

  • 02:03 AM - Hawk Diesel mentioned Blue in post Some New Divination Spells
    Thanks for the feedback! Blue - I can see where you're coming from on the Combat Clarity. I based it off of a mix of Bless (add 1d4 to attack rolls) and Bane (subtract 1d4 to saves). The intention for the save disadvantage wasn't intended for debuffs but rather more about direct damage spells (knowing when to cast fireball at the most opportune time and in just the right place to make it as hard as possible to get out of the way). I also was watching Haste closely to keep it on par, without overshadowing it. Sabathius42 - First of all, good catch with the Sword of Damocles! It is intended to end once the reaction has been used, so I will adjust the wording to reflect that. Also I understand your concern with Divination being more about the buffs than the debuffs. I was trying carefully not to make it seem like a curse, which I tend to feel like belongs more in the Necromancy camp. But the way I view it is less about impacting how the enemies avoid the spells, but improving the timing and placement of the spel...

Friday, 28th September, 2018

  • 10:39 PM - DM Dave1 mentioned Blue in post Share examples of return to simplicity and/or return to analog solutions from digital
    Initiative: I have a dry erase board where I (or one of the players) order the PCs and the enemies in a column. Different color pens for PCs and enemies. Works fine and reasonably quickly, especially when I have them roll initiative at the beginning of the session. We display it in a spot where everyone can see. I really like Blue's old school clothespin idea... I might have to pick some up and try that! Minis: We employ both the grid and TotM at our tables. For gridded combats, players typically have minis for their PCs - and I have a few generic ones that can stand in. I use chess pieces for small/medium opponents, Skylanders or blocks for large opponents, and beer/soda cans for huge opponents. Spells: I print out custom spell sheets for NPCs from www.dnd-spells.com and encourage players to do the same. It has been a tremendous timesaver at the table and doesn't require constant look-ups in PHB or XGtE or D&D Beyond. Electronics at the table: While I'm firmly in the pencil and paper and books camp, I've found my phone helpful in a pinch to look up stats when I forgot a book. But I'm finding that players are often distracted by their phones and laptops instead of respectfully paying attention to the rest of us at the table when their PC is not in the spotlight. At session 0 of our next campaign, I ...

Tuesday, 25th September, 2018

  • 06:14 PM - 5ekyu mentioned Blue in post Glamour Bard Analysis Paralysis!
    I agree with Blue As my sorc has progressed, I have plans and options and candidate lists for mc options, feats, spells etc but it really keeps coming down to an "in-character" choice at the time and those are often not following the grand scheme. Definitely, something a full tier away, it's extremely likely the decision points will be very different than they seem now. Real play vs white room - that's called playing.

Sunday, 16th September, 2018

  • 03:35 AM - pukunui mentioned Blue in post Suitable Rewards for Successfully Saving the World?
    Blue: Thanks for the suggestions. As I mentioned in my OP, I am planning on giving one PC some land that is being threatened by giants, which will be the hook to lead them into Against the Giants. I am also planning on giving at least some of them supernatural gifts, either from their gods or the trickster spirits (which aren't really gods). As for rights and titles, yes, I'll give them some of those too. As mentioned, one is a cleric of Eilistraee. The paladin/sorcerer also follows Kelemvor. I am thinking of having the Order of the Gauntlet offer the latter membership in their faction. Some of the others might get offers from the Lords' Alliance and/or the Harpers. I might even offer the rogue membership in the Zhentarim.

Tuesday, 11th September, 2018

  • 09:18 AM - pemerton mentioned Blue in post Do you enjoy playing roleplaying games in which you have no clue about the rules?
    ... between the players at the table. That's their sole and crucial function. Mechanics can take multiple forms (I think this point goes back to Jonathan Tweet in Everway): Drama resolution relies on asserted statements without reference to listed attributes or quantitative elements. Karma resolution relies on referring to listed attributes or quantitative elements without a random element. Fortune resolution relies on utilizing a random device of some kind, usually delimited by quantitative scores of some kind. If playing without knowledge of the mechanics means lots of "drama" resolution - ie when I say what my PC does, then most of the time that just happens in the fiction - then it's fine although potentially a bit unexciting (the situations have to be pretty evocatively set out by the GM so that it's fun to engage with them knowing how that engaging is all I need to do to have things happen). If I'm meant to be learning the fiction, like the magic system described by Blue and jmucchiello, the GM had better provide me with the chance to learn! If playing without knowledge of the mechanics means lots of "fortune" resolution but only the GM knows what is going on - only the GM can call for a check, interpret a check, etc - then it's really a form of GM fiat resolution - the mechanics are imposing pretty minimal constraint under these circumstances - with the players along for the ride. The GM better be a good storyteller! Playing with heavily GM-mediated "karma" resolution makes me think of Amber diceless - I've never played it myself but that is how it looked when I saw others playing it.

Monday, 10th September, 2018

  • 05:30 PM - jmucchiello mentioned Blue in post Do you enjoy playing roleplaying games in which you have no clue about the rules?
    ...for a 1d10 like value. Given the rough granularity of the "system" a d10 was sufficient for determining a result. The magic system was less free form than implied. It had a grammar and vocabulary. Anyone who knew the words and could form a proper sentence could ask the faeries and other beings of power to alter reality. If the faeries liked your pronunciation, (Players did have to speak the spells aloud) the effect would happen. "Osoro gen Gothamr Ra Dal Inf Fir La"might translate (loosely) to "In the name of the great Oroso and lost Gothamr, invoke the element of fire upon (gesture pointing at) my enemies." I don't remember the actual syllables but the players did have "spell books" that listed spells they knew would produce specific results. And they reversed engineered most of the words and enough of the grammar to do ad hoc spells. This would never work at say a convention. The DM must know the players well enough to know how they evaluate risk. I'm glad you enjoyed it, Blue. I enjoyed the walk down memory lane. :)

Saturday, 1st September, 2018

  • 06:58 PM - DMMike mentioned Blue in post Starting Money - Determined by Rules, GM, or Player?
    ...some simple random starting wealth allocation, but gives the players the option of spending their background trait on a variety of options that increase their starting wealth. So, in either case, what is the answer? To clarify: most games have rules for wealth for characters starting out at raw 1st level or equivalent, but not very many have rules for characters coming in at higher level; and of those that do some are less than no help at all (3e D&D, I'm looking right at ya). ::Sigh:: you smart people are sooo neeedy... :) Rules - what's given in the designer's rulebook. Not the GM's. Player - what the player's character concept implies/specifies. GM - wealth by house rule or rule zero. Other - includes combinations of the above. Oh yeah: Starting - entry-level or level 1 characters. "Depends on the game" makes sense, since different games will use money for different reasons, and those reasons might or might not be handled well by the rules. However, Blue, don't confuse the player using the rules/having choices as being Player determined wealth. If the player is using the rules to do so, it's wealth by Rules. If the player is arbitrarily determining starting money, rules be damned, then it's Player money.

Friday, 31st August, 2018

  • 01:47 AM - TheCosmicKid mentioned Blue in post Should there be Subclasses that replace something from the Base Class?
    Part of the answer to the question depends on another question: who are we talking about? As far as published material from WotC is concerned, I think Blue and others have covered the matter. The revised ranger is particularly illuminating (although its status is now in some doubt). As far as homebrewing DMs go, though... I, at least, substitute class features quite a bit. I don't think I ever formalize it as part of a subclass, though, it's just on an ad hoc basis.

Wednesday, 29th August, 2018

  • 08:27 PM - Quickleaf mentioned Blue in post Social skills vs. ... all other mechanics
    Blue One trick I use at my table is using high skill bonuses as an indication of how much “help” the player can receive from other players OOC. I’ve seen this apply to negotiations, wilderness survival, D&D monster lore, engineering, and puzzles. I generally allow more “group think” / “yeah! what (s)he said” the higher the acting PC’s relevant skill is.


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Tuesday, 16th July, 2019

  • 12:39 AM - Remathilis quoted Blue in post Finesse rebalance
    If you think the rapier is too good, would you use this? What does it break? (DEX-clerics?) How can we improve it? Here is the question: what problem are you trying to fix? Is the problem one about certain builds (such as rapier/shield fighters)? Is it a problem with the weapon table balance? Is it a problem with finesse being a default build for certain "skirmisher" classes (rogue, monk, ranger)? Is it a problem with certain weapons being neglected in favor of finesse weapons? Lets look at each separately. First, the weapon table is hopelessly fubar. Seriously, heavy weapons begin and end with greatsword, tridents are martial spears, rapiers are king of finesse, and there is no reason to ever use a heavy crossbow since the only classes proficient in it gain extra attacks that make it a trap option. If you're going to try to fix the weapon table by changing finesse, you are only doing one of nearly a dozen fixes needed to balance that table. Second, I have no problem with rogues, ...

Monday, 15th July, 2019

  • 10:41 PM - Tony Vargas quoted Blue in post Finesse rebalance
    Therefore the issue isn't with the rapier, it's that the longswords and other martial 1H weapons aren't d10. It seemed like they tried to balance finesse d8 and versatile d8, but versatile is so situational while finesse is such a game changer.So, maybe piercing just needs to be a lot worse than slashing in some way? Because that seems like a difference, there, too. (Or the versatile blades need to be pierce & slashing, vs the finesse blades being piercing?) Or... …/clearly/ what's missing is ::drumroll:: 1e AD&D style Weapon vs Armor modifiers! Yep. If finesse weapons were good vs light armor and sucked vs heavy, while versatile weapons got generally favorable mods, it'd all balance neatly (OK, messily) out!
  • 08:09 PM - Laurefindel quoted Blue in post What are your Pedantic Complaints about D&D?
    If we're already accepted the game assumption that you can be hit several times by a battle axe, roasted by a dragon, and you're still fighting, then the realism of a 40' fall from failing a climb check on a cliff killing you was not in genre. Nonsense! How dare you question my pedantry!!! On a more serious note, one of my actual pedantic qualms is that fantasy cities never seem to have the rural populations to support them with credibility. Oftentimes, it's wilderness, wilderness, wilderness, and BOOM! big city of 50,000. That, and the apparent lack of actual kings and feudal structure in a feudalistic-inspired game setting(s).
  • 07:18 PM - Jer quoted Blue in post What are your Pedantic Complaints about D&D?
    If we're already accepted the game assumption that you can be hit several times by a battle axe, roasted by a dragon, and you're still fighting, then the realism of a 40' fall from failing a climb check on a cliff killing you was not in genre. Oh no - we're now in the pedantic thing about D&D that I hate, which is "arguments about what hit points are". Not hit points themselves, but the arguments that they spawn...
  • 05:41 PM - Tony Vargas quoted Blue in post Required Class Skills
    Please, stop trying to pretend that there is only one type of wizard. There are a wide variety of concepts that can take the wizard class.While I don't disagree that a wizard could learn magic & have his spell book while remaining ignorant of Arcane lore outside the practical necessities of his trade, I can't agree that opens up a wide variety. The wizard is a bookish, Vancian/Hermetic magic-user, no matter how you tweak or polish it. Casting arcane spells without all that training and that spellbook was broken out to the innate-magic Sorcerer and the pact-fueled Warlock (and, without the spellbook - ie oral tradition, I guess, to the Bard). D&D has gone from one Magic-User class, to 4 fully-supported full classes - plus two new sub-classes in two formerly all-martial-all-the-time classes. They were bound to get a little narrow. I could see granting the skill as part of the feature that builds off it. As long as there's language that gives you back the choice if you /did/ alrea...
  • 05:10 PM - jaelis quoted Blue in post Death and 0 Max HP
    One concept from an earlier edition of D&D was specific overrides general. If that's the case, the specific of the spell returning at 1 HP should overcome the general rule that HPs can not exceed max HPs. I think that's a sound argument, but debatable because it is a bit of a tangle of specific and general rules. (For instance, cure wounds can't heal you above your hp max, but that is due to the general rule.) But for the purpose of this argument, I'm willing to assume that the hp max reduction takes precedence over the spell.
  • 04:53 PM - Charlaquin quoted Blue in post What are your Pedantic Complaints about D&D?
    The impossibility of "he and I move while staying together" in combat. Taking out the delay action just made some simple concepts impossible. This is entirely possible with the Ready action.
  • 12:13 PM - KentDT quoted Blue in post Vancian to Zelaznian magic
    I'm not quite sure how this works in practice. Can you walk me through this. Say I'm a 6th level wizard. IF I want to cast spells quickly I need ot pre-cast them. So is this mean at some point actually picking a number of spells and taking time to cast them? Does that mean ahead of time I think of what I could want to do with my slots and pre-cast? If I may want to cast Lightning Bolt once or twice, Haste once or twice, Counterspell but likely once max, and Scortching Ray uplifted to 3rd once (for more precise targeting) or False like upast to 3rd level once that I then spend the time to pre-cast all of them at ritual speeds? (Plus all of how I want to do my lower level spells.) And it still locks me out of doing something like casting Copunterspell twice with my two 3rd level slots? It seems like the time spent pre-casting is dependant on spells in your spellbook (expanding ever level if not more from found/bought spells) times spell slots and how you might want to use them, with ...

Sunday, 14th July, 2019

  • 09:41 PM - Introbulus quoted Blue in post [GUIDE] Power Overwhelming: A Sorcerer Guide
    Welcome to the forum, but that was not the most impressive first post. It ignores the bolded and large beginning of the post: This was saved when the WotC forums shut down is 2015. It has not been taken over by the owner and Mistwell isn't trying to claim RhaegarT's work as his own and update it. Tidal Wave came out in Xanathar's Guide to Everything that was published in 2017, would most definitely not be there. Nor would any of the other XGtE spells that Sorcerers get, a fairly large list which you missed in your criticism. Alternately, if you looked at the Google Docs version, which is getting maintained, you will notice that Tidal Wave is listed: Regardless of the history, a more positive introduction to the community would be "Hey, I noticed this spell isn't there so here's a write-up and a rating so we can improve this". Community feedback is common, take a look at the various guides here. As it is, it comes across as bragging that the only reason you bothered to create ...
  • 05:10 PM - BlivetWidget quoted Blue in post Required Class Skills
    In the context of the game we are speaking about. Proficient in a skill explicitly means getting to add your proficiency bonus to the ability check. As hard as you're trying to be "right on the internet", nobody in this thread is confused about the DnD mechanical implementation of proficiency. We're trying to discuss what it would even mean for someone to devote their life to being a math professor, being good at it, and somehow never becoming skilled at math. As others have rightly pointed out, it's a bit nonsensical. That's the premise of this entire thread, in fact, so I can't discern what sets you off against my comments in particular. If you don't like the idea of inherent class features, you may as well get angry that wizards have predefined numbers of spell slots and complain that it holds you back from playing a very specific, suboptimal, theorycrafted wizard you dreamed up that you feel has more flavor than the wizard-as-described in DnD lore.
  • 04:17 AM - 77IM quoted Blue in post Required Class Skills
    Let me repeat that: a required skill, going with class-thematic background that already grants it, means that instead of picking from the class list of appropriate skills, the player can instead pick from any skill, which includes a lot that are less appropriate. You can already run into this in 5E, since officially you pick class skills first, and then if you pick a class-thematic background, it's very easy to double up on skills and wind up picking from the full list. Plus you can customize backgrounds to include whatever skills you want (you have to justify it somehow as part of your "background," but it's usually not too hard). So the reality is that characters pick 2-4 class skills plus 2 skills from the whole list, and I don't see how things are really any different if you also give some classes a free skill or two. It would be similar to playing a race that grants that skill.
  • 03:48 AM - BlivetWidget quoted Blue in post Required Class Skills
    So, you deny the possibility of a character who is naturally good at Arcana (high Intelligence) but not trained in it (unproficient)? Not a sorcerer, who casts from natural talent, but a wizard who is bright but not classically trained and is having to figure out the formal parts of it as they go along. I'm sorry to tell you that there are plenty of stories with main characters who fit this archetype. I am not sorry to tell you that this narrow and restrictive viewpoint of what makes a valid concept for my character is not supported by the rules. I'm sorry to tell you your interpretation of proficiency is flawed ;). You don't have to be classically trained to be proficient, you just have to be good at something. Check your dictionary.

Saturday, 13th July, 2019

  • 10:06 PM - nobody69.420 quoted Blue in post Monk Tortle
    So, for example, every elf in a martial class (and some others) deserves a freebie because their elven weapon training overlaps? If I multiclass into a class that grants armor/weapon proficiencies (all but sorcerer & wizard), should I be expecting a "make-up" bennie for already having them? It's a conscious choice just like my race/class combo. I see your point, but there is a large difference between armor and weapons. While you can only have proficiency in three different types of armor, you can have proficiency in any weapon. Also, none of my players expect a "make-up" for wasted features, but since they only decide class and race (they're new to D&D), I feel obligated as DM, and as the creator of their characters, to make their characters as good as they can be.
  • 03:16 PM - FrogReaver quoted Blue in post Break this House Rule: Advantage(s) can stack
    People are talking abotu starting at lower levels? How about: Elven Hexblade 5 using Devil's Sight + Darkness (advantage to hit, disadvantage to be hit), Shadow Blade (advantage in dim or darkness), Elven Accuracy (reroll one die when rolling with advantage) on a Cursed target. Effectively 4d20 to hit, with 3d8 base weapon damage all multiplied on a crit, and crits on a 19-20 which leads to over 1/3 chance to crit. Note: Hexblade was for curse, not CHR as attack stat since Shadowblade doesn't qualify for it (holding at end of long rest). That's why Elf for +2 DEX instead of Half Elf. Can be any other type of warlock. I like the idea but darkness and Shadowblade are both concentration

Friday, 12th July, 2019

  • 01:31 PM - DM Dave1 quoted Blue in post Monk Tortle
    All yes.... For example, I gave the Aasimar Sorcerer Divine Soul/Celestial Warlock a bonus cantrip as they were granted light twice. Well, if you're going to veer off course you can go on and on forever. There is a difference between redundancy and not making full use of something. Your half-orc example is off point. However, if a player makes a suboptimal choice for RPG reasons, I will reward them with something fun. So, if you play an ORC wizard, with a -2 int, I'll make sure you have fun doing it by giving it some advantages... although not always mechanical. My goal is to remove the elements that discourage people from playing 'suboptimal mechanical choices that might otherwise appear to be fun to the players. Ah, while I did veer off course with the half-orc example, it was revealing as I now think I see why our observations differ. It seems you are known to your regular players as a DM who offers concessions at chargen. And perhaps, and I'm guessing here, you inform new player...

Thursday, 11th July, 2019

  • 09:34 PM - Rory Fansler quoted Blue in post Why do you play games other than D&D?
    Why do I play games other than D&D? Okay... I play other games for either genre or feel. Or both. For example I know there are plenty of superhero games out there, but having played a bunch of them I always return to Champions (well, to Hero System, but to misquote Billy Joel, "It'll always be Champions to me".) On the other hand, I've tried Fantasy Hero and there are a lot better systems for a fantasy game. Though I do want to get into a Marvel Heroic Roleplay game to give it a try. There are a lot of systems that I haven't tried and I want to, always for the feel but also for how that feel is supported by the mechanics. Blades in the Dark, Dogs in the Vineyard, Apocalypse World (not Dungeon World!), etc. Over my long years in the hobby, I find myself more attracted to rules that don't just allow a setting, but actively support it. Vs. generic rulesets. I know that seems a bit odd when I mention Champions as a favorite, but it was made first and foremost as a supers system and ...

Wednesday, 10th July, 2019

  • 08:33 PM - Saelorn quoted Blue in post Why don't everything scale by proficiency bonus?
    If everything scales, nothing scales. If both you chance to succeed and your target both go up by the same number, there's no relative change. It's like as if there's no scaling.True, but only if everything scales, which I don't think anyone was actually proposing. The suggestion is that all of your numbers go up with level (whether you're a PC, NPC, or monster). The rest of the world would stay the same around you. Should the situation arise, a level 15 wizard would still be as badly off swinging their sword against a level 15 monster as they ever were, but they'd be much better off when trying to swing that sword against some level 3 monsters. A level 15 wizard would be better at noticing a poorly-hidden pit trap, or resisting the gaze of a basilisk, than they were at level 3. Universal scaling is primarily a tool to represent how characters exist in a wide world that isn't specifically tailored to them. It lets them make more sense as people, rather than as narrative constructs.
  • 06:57 PM - Derren quoted Blue in post Help Reading Dice Pools
    Some people may not want to deface forty ten-siders. You can also programm an app for your phone which detects dice and counts how many were successes.
  • 06:02 PM - Celebrim quoted Blue in post OSR Gripes
    I would think that if the context is that the character is uninteresting to play, all 9 to 12s without even a penalty score to have a fun flaw, leveling up is not the goal. They will remain uninteresting. Even more so because the nature of OSR rules if they are anything like 1E AD&D is that ability scores are generally more important than level. Without ability scores you can neither achieve the level nor the class you may want to play. And the effectiveness of a character with higher ability scores increases exponentially. A character with 1 18 is generally about twice as effective as a character without an ability modifier. We eventually learned that a character was only going to be playable in the long run if: 1) They had at least a 16 in either INT or WIS (and obviously no 5 or less that interfered with class selection), and so could be at least a reasonably effective M-U or Cleric. Even so an 18 was hugely important even in this case for the M-U because without it you ...
  • 02:24 PM - dnd4vr quoted Blue in post Why don't everything scale by proficiency bonus?
    If everything scales, nothing scales. If both you chance to succeed and your target both go up by the same number, there's no relative change. It's like as if there's no scaling. So if everything scaled, you wouldn't get better at anything when you go up in level. Adding +6 to attack and +6 to AC would just wash. Adding +6 to your save DC and +6 to all saves would be a wash. Adding proficiency to targets has the practical effect of doing the opposite of the goal of getting better. Giving two saves out of six gives some differentiation between classes and puts more tactics into spell selection. As for things like non-proficient skills and non-proficient weapons, that's how they kept it meaningful to be proficient or not. You only add your Proficiency bonus to things you are Proficient in. Differentiation where people get to stay good at what they train in. There would effectively be no skill system if your non-proficient skill got your proficiency bonus because your choices would ...


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