View Profile: Shiroiken - Morrus' Unofficial Tabletop RPG News
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  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Wednesday, 17th July, 2019, 11:53 PM
    You know what they say about assuming... I've been playing since the late 80s, early 90s, having done every edition except OD&D (which I didn't find out existed until I came here) and only dabbled in Pathfinder (because had serious issues with the core 3E mechanics). This is very true, and if you reread my comment you quoted, I never said anything to the contrary. I said there were mechanical...
    39 replies | 1310 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Wednesday, 17th July, 2019, 03:49 AM
    In my first campaign our dragon sorceress figured this one out as well. Her solution was fairly simple, because we were using Roll20 where you can make macros to automatically make fairly complicated rolls quickly. She always had them move in a swarm pattern, usually giving the command "kill this guy," and letting them go Cuisinart (she used a bandoleer of daggers). She'd roll all her attacks to...
    13 replies | 457 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Wednesday, 17th July, 2019, 03:40 AM
    The biggest issue with looting non-magical equipment is transportation. Even without using the Encumbrance variant, there are logistical issues with carrying a single extra suit of armor, let alone a dozen or two. Unless someone strong is willing to use both hands to carry a stack of them (thus being useless for a lot of exploration as well as some combat until they can drop the stuff), they need...
    20 replies | 654 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Tuesday, 16th July, 2019, 09:42 PM
    Unlike some of the prior editions, 5E does mechanically reward stereotypes. Dwarves make great warriors and clerics. Elves are good at magic and archery. Halflings are awesome thieves. Half Elf Bard is good instead of bad. Gnomes are excellent wizards. You get the idea. However, ability scores are not the end all/be all of the race. I've seen a dwarf wizard in 5E, because they got medium armor...
    39 replies | 1310 view(s)
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  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Tuesday, 16th July, 2019, 02:59 AM
    I've seen a few in play, but not many. The first I saw was a half-elf paladin, who worked out moderately well, but was well behind the DPS of the great weapon barbarian and red dragon sorcerer. The next was an elf fighter/eldritch knight, but he was an archer so that's to be expected. The final one I've seen was a rogue who multi-classed into fighter (champion) to try and increase the chance of...
    87 replies | 2783 view(s)
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  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Tuesday, 16th July, 2019, 02:50 AM
    When you look at Dex, it is one of the better ability scores, being in the top 3 for a majority of character designs (i.e. every non-str based attacker), but it isn't "better" than Str in every way, unless the DM allows it to be so. Jumping, Climbing, and Swimming are all Strength/Athletics checks, and despite their objections, I've seen quite a few Dex based characters suffer greatly for...
    87 replies | 2783 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Monday, 15th July, 2019, 11:33 AM
    The importance of a character's race is dependent upon the player. Some players don't care about anything beyond the mechanics of their character. Others like myself consider the character to have a life of it's own beyond what is on the character sheet. Each character for us is unique, and the race of a character is an integral part of it. As for setting design, you as the DM should not limit...
    107 replies | 3804 view(s)
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  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Sunday, 14th July, 2019, 04:42 PM
    Updating old adventures can sometimes be very tricky, because some old monsters were a threat at any level (the molds, slimes, and fungus especially), but less so in 5E. In addition, some monsters were not meant to be fought at all, and were well above the abilities of the characters. While I'm not familiar with adventures in question, I can offer a bit of advice. Add in some similar themed...
    3 replies | 206 view(s)
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  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Sunday, 14th July, 2019, 04:31 PM
    The "meat" of the game takes place between 5-10, but most campaigns run both before and after these levels. If they focused on setting the balance by tiers, they could do a better job of overall balance, but then they'd have issues with groups that use the standard xp rules because once one member of the party jumps to the next tier, it gets unbalanced for everyone else.
    16 replies | 574 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Sunday, 14th July, 2019, 08:09 AM
    I'd also suggest looking into "(not so) Legendary Actions" on the DMGuild. It's a method to add lesser versions of legendary actions to make mini-boss monsters or to boost monsters like the hydra you feel should be legendary.
    9 replies | 321 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Thursday, 11th July, 2019, 05:06 AM
    Shiroiken replied to Languages
    One of the uses of Intelligence in the PHB is to communicate with someone you don't share a language with. I'd set a DC based on how complicated the ideas expressed are. I've personally redone the languages to fit my campaign. In addition to granting additional languages/tool proficiencies by Int modifier, I've added human languages (humans get +1 racial language) and broken the languages into...
    9 replies | 374 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Thursday, 11th July, 2019, 04:56 AM
    Science is a myth put forth by the heretics cultists called "scientists." They attempt subvert the unwary into their belief system that no rational, gods-fearing person can truly understand. In all seriousness, my Greyhawk campaign actually works based on the "science" of the middle ages. Alchemy requires magic (or fiendish connections) to function, gravity only exists because everything seeks...
    69 replies | 2232 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Thursday, 11th July, 2019, 04:45 AM
    If the target market is primarily (only) D&D players, then Turn Based is the way to go. However, it will have a much broader market appeal (and make more money) if it is real time, because that is the common style of play these days.
    47 replies | 2017 view(s)
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  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Thursday, 11th July, 2019, 04:43 AM
    Someone on another thread (for everything, not just saves) put forth a rather interesting idea. It looked something like it was adding half the modifier... but at your proficiency for level -2. this made it so that you got your first +1 at level 3, then you get your +2 at level 10, and your final +3 wouldn't be until level 19. Made proficiency still relevant, while keeping non-proficient saves...
    71 replies | 2057 view(s)
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  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Thursday, 11th July, 2019, 04:38 AM
    I wish I could sticky the following to the start of this inane thread. tl;dr version OP: I don't like the current system, and feel it's unrealistic Dissenting Commenters: It works out just fine mechanically, and there are some real world justifications OP plus allied commenters: I still don't like the current system, and feel it's unrealistic Repeat ad nasuem, adding various...
    224 replies | 5860 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Tuesday, 9th July, 2019, 11:52 AM
    I have considered this, but IDK. Half seems to greatly reduce the overall benefit of proficiency at levels 1-4, since it's really only a +1 bonus. I considered 1/3, but that's only +2 once you get to levels 17-20, which is pretty pathetic. I would probably split the difference, and grant half proficiency starting at level 5 (so it's a flat +2 bonus against non-proficient until level 13).
    71 replies | 2057 view(s)
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  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Tuesday, 9th July, 2019, 12:20 AM
    A player in my first 5E campaign did this. I simply looked at it and unless he was obviously visible to the monster (basically violating the rules for hiding), I pretty much just let him sneak around as much as he liked. The only time he was really challenged on it was when he was trying to hide in places where he might be accidentally visible, such as moving between columns. I think he was...
    104 replies | 2903 view(s)
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  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Tuesday, 9th July, 2019, 12:12 AM
    Yea, I was expecting a discussion on the various ecology of monsters, like the 2E monster books had.
    29 replies | 729 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Monday, 8th July, 2019, 11:26 AM
    Elves are quite common with my group so elven is the most popular non-human language. Since I use the human language variant from SCAG, the next two most common languages are Oeridian and Flan.
    11 replies | 504 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Thursday, 4th July, 2019, 01:15 AM
    Thematically, almost every class are variations on the Core 4. Barbarian, Monk, and Warlord are all types of Fighters. Druids are Nature Clerics. Sorcerers and Warlocks are variants on the Wizard (the original magic user). Bards, Paladins, and Rangers are variants of Rogue/Wizard, Fighter/Cleric, and Fighter/Rogue/Cleric. Pretty much only the Artificer and Mystic are actual new themes, and even...
    60 replies | 1966 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Wednesday, 3rd July, 2019, 03:26 AM
    Wait... 5E assumes a 4 person party? I don't think I've ever noticed that anywhere. Anywho, my experience is that the number of players in a game has a dramatic impact on the best type of game to run. With a smaller group, role-playing is best, since everyone can easily participate without talking all over each other. Larger groups often work best in exploration and combat, since it nominally...
    21 replies | 843 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Tuesday, 2nd July, 2019, 11:41 AM
    The original purpose of BECMI was to introduce players to AD&D or OD&D from a simpler form. Realistically, the free basic rules provide this exact same experience, as it lacks all the optional rules that complicate things.
    35 replies | 1623 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Monday, 1st July, 2019, 11:42 AM
    Conceptually I liked the spheres from 2E, but I remember the biggest downside: players needed to pick a deity with access to the Healing sphere, as magical healing was absolutely necessary. With 5E, it might not be as necessary, but I think most players would still choose a deity that grants them access to healing. I think a better system would have been to allow most priests minor access to most...
    25 replies | 1100 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Sunday, 30th June, 2019, 04:20 PM
    My first campaign used the standard xp, but I was using a lot of older 1E adventures, which can be a grind of combat. Once we got about 10th level or so, they started leveling almost every session, because they were killing so many things each time. This didn't really give them time to adapt to their new abilities, so they were often overlooked and forgotten. I'd think 2.5 sessions should be the...
    45 replies | 1831 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Sunday, 30th June, 2019, 08:08 AM
    (1E) - started with only myself and my brother, plus several DM PCs to fill out as needed, and we rolled 3d6 in order. As our characters died and other players joined the game, they took over existing PCs owned by the DM, who had around 5 or 6 dozen characters of varying levels (most in the Lv 3-9 range) so that we didn't have to restart or have a wide level range between us. Worst method I've...
    67 replies | 2033 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Saturday, 29th June, 2019, 03:18 AM
    The one that jumps out at me is Knock. Given it's downside (which is a pretty big downside), making it also cost a spell slot is unnecessary. I'd be okay with removing the downside when cast with a spell slot, because that's a daily resource (as opposed to a skill check that requires proficiency). Magic Circle seems like it should also be a ritual. The purpose is to set up a summoning spell,...
    108 replies | 3758 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Friday, 28th June, 2019, 09:41 PM
    Man (answering phone): Hello? Lawyer: I just thought about you, and decided to give you a call. Man: That's nice! Lawyer: No, that's $400...
    95 replies | 3880 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Thursday, 27th June, 2019, 09:44 PM
    When a character declares an attack that might have cover due to another creature, I inform the player and allow them to decide another action or target (or to move to a better spot, if able). It's normally half cover, but if 2 or more creatures are in the way, I grant 3/4 cover. My players know that I use the "Hitting Cover" variant, so they're cautious, but not too cautious.
    28 replies | 1101 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Thursday, 27th June, 2019, 09:36 PM
    Along with 50 coupons for unrelated products.
    21 replies | 913 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Thursday, 27th June, 2019, 10:37 AM
    As much as I hate the 2E Greyhawk, the best singular adventure that is ingrained into the setting is Vecna Lives. It starts in Greyhawk, moves west across several notable locations, and ends with a battle between Vecna and Iuz. It's a super-railroad, poorly written adventure that would have been a much better novel, but it's definitively Greyhawk. There was another adventure in 2E Greyhawk...
    21 replies | 913 view(s)
    3 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Thursday, 27th June, 2019, 03:50 AM
    Rather than trying to run a true "campaign," I would instead consider running it old school tournament style. Find/create a short adventure that can be completed in a single session, and make pre-gen characters designed specifically for this adventure. I'd start mostly with level 1-3 characters at first, because the higher the level, the more complicated a character can be (I recently played in...
    11 replies | 481 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Thursday, 27th June, 2019, 03:31 AM
    I have taken a serious look at this. Unfortunately, the Feats are not particularly balanced, with about half a dozen feats being featured in most campaigns. If you remove the ability score option, then everyone is going to have most of those feats (particularly Lucky and Resilient, which are awesome for just about any character). Either a bunch of new feats would have to come out, or I would have...
    17 replies | 557 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Thursday, 27th June, 2019, 01:26 AM
    Perfect edition according to ENWorld... pass. Remember, we're not the average gamer, but instead we represent the extremists of the hobby. I think 5E is the closest version of a "perfect" edition you're going to find that is actually marketable.
    286 replies | 10847 view(s)
    9 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Thursday, 27th June, 2019, 01:18 AM
    Your campaign is free to vary, but I require paladins and rangers to actually worship a deity to gain their supernatural powers. Oddly, no one has ever complained.
    352 replies | 12472 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Wednesday, 26th June, 2019, 07:17 PM
    If you're going to split them up, I'd give Feats at ASI levels and give a +1 to an ability score at every even character level. This allows a slow buildup, rather than a sudden boost at every 4 levels.
    17 replies | 557 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Wednesday, 26th June, 2019, 07:14 PM
    The Ranger is the Paladin for the Druid. Just as the Paladin is the divine champion of a particular deity, the Ranger is the champion of nature. Using special skills and druidic magic, they hunt down their enemies and defend the followers of the Old Faith.
    352 replies | 12472 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Wednesday, 26th June, 2019, 04:09 AM
    It really depends on the style and level of the PCs. In a game where the PCs are going to face a dozen or more orcs in a standard encounter, then allowing a potential kill shot against a single pud guard in order to have a better stealth into the camp seems fine. If the party is only able to face an equal number of orcs in a standard encounter, then I'd say it's too powerful. Of course, a really...
    178 replies | 5681 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 09:36 PM
    Shiroiken replied to Last Stand
    I can recall a few notable sacrifice plays I've made over the decades. Can't say that I recall any from other players, but I'm often playing characters who are willing to lay down their life for others. We were tracking down a cult that met out in the deep woods. We knew a little about it, but not that much (our charisma sucked, so we didn't gather much information from the locals). We mostly...
    7 replies | 479 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 01:59 AM
    Good plan. The 5E beholder is written as such to keep an unscrupulous DM from making it into an near unstoppable killing machine (as was often common in prior editions). The ability is not a cast spell, so the concentration rules do not apply. It is simply an ability the beholder always has on, unless they choose to close their primary eye.
    6 replies | 373 view(s)
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  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Tuesday, 25th June, 2019, 01:54 AM
    My 1e campaign ran forever, with me starting with a level 1 paladin who died by level 3, and eventually taking over as DM when our current DM left. That campaign was a mish-mash of Greyhawk on one side of the world, Mystara on the other side, and Hollow World within, because those were the books I owned (I allowed them to teleport with ease in order to make adventuring locations easy). It really...
    5 replies | 358 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Monday, 24th June, 2019, 03:59 AM
    Not big on homebrewing classes & sub-classes. I wish the Warlock was Int instead of Cha, because it would have put another spellcaster using Int and balanced it out a bit. Oddly, despite my heavy dislike of 4E, I really liked the concept of the gish class (Swordblade?), and would love to have seen that as a 1/2 caster class like the paladin and ranger for the wizard. Your experiences have...
    61 replies | 2062 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Sunday, 23rd June, 2019, 11:16 PM
    I assume you refer to the "knowledge skills" Arcana, History Nature, and Religion; if not, please clarify. IME, the knowledge skills are very DM dependent, especially since there is no specifically listed use for any of these rolls in the PHB or DMG. Some DMs use them quite a bit, making them very important, but seldom vital to the success of an adventure, even if they do make it easier. Other...
    61 replies | 2062 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Sunday, 23rd June, 2019, 07:40 PM
    Smugglers: party left without discovering them, so should remain business as usual. If the Magic Mouth goes off again, they'll be on alert again. Ned: if Ned was with the party when the Mold killed half the party, have him spread tales in town about how haunted the house is, with a yellow ghost stealing the soul of two people. Have him exaggerate the danger as much as possible to keep anyone...
    7 replies | 442 view(s)
    4 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Sunday, 23rd June, 2019, 07:09 PM
    If you are talking about starting up a new campaign world, it can take either a LOT of time, or very little. As a busy DM, you might honestly be best picking up a 5E AP adventure and just running that. If you don't want to do so, you might want to just buy an old copy of one of the existing settings for D&D, but they will require a little updating. Some DMs (especially old school DMs) tend to...
    39 replies | 1428 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Sunday, 23rd June, 2019, 05:07 PM
    The only change I've needed was to give Int a modifier on the number of languages and tools. This keeps it from being a complete toilet ability (negative costs you a language or tool) and justifies giving it a small bonus for non-wizards. Wisdom and Charisma don't really need anything, because they have some of the most vital non-combat skills in the game (Insight, Perception, Survival,...
    61 replies | 2062 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Shiroiken's Avatar
    Thursday, 20th June, 2019, 11:46 AM
    The best solution I've seen for a versatile fighting style is one that relies on the character switching between 1H and 2H each round. An example would be: At the start of your turn you may shift your grip on a versatile weapon you're holding. If you are now holding it 1 handed, you deal +1 damage with it until the start of your next turn (or until you change your grip). If you are now holding...
    49 replies | 2047 view(s)
    0 XP
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About Shiroiken

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About Shiroiken
Introduction:
Greyhawk Grognard
About Me:
I started playing when I was 14 or so, with AD&D 1E. I've played and DMed every edition of D&D except OD&D, and have played several RPGs over the years. My favorites are: (A)D&D, L5R, and Deadlands (original RPG). I am currently only playing and running D&D 5E.
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Cincinnati
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Over 40
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I am running a Gyagxian Greyhawk campaign, tying several of Gygax's best adventures together into an semi-AP. The group stated with the Temple of Elemental Evil, then moved on to the Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth (with a stopover at the Forgotten Temple of Tharizdun), before beginning Against the Giants.

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Town:
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Ohio
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USA
Game Details:
I am running a Gyagxian Greyhawk campaign, tying several of Gygax's best adventures together into an semi-AP. The group stated with the Temple of Elemental Evil, then moved on to the Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth (with a stopover at the Forgotten Temple of Tharizdun), before beginning Against the Giants.
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Friday, 24th May, 2019

  • 06:35 PM - Celebrim mentioned Shiroiken in post Sinister Secret of Saltmarsh, off to a good start
    It matters because the interesting consequences could be very different. Both interesting, but different. It doesn't work that way in practice. Different implies the possibility of uninteresting. You cannot guarantee that if different outcomes are possible, that they are all equally interesting. And if you can't guarantee that they are all equally interesting, you can't guarantee that they are interesting at all. But more to the point, if the different choices are all interesting, then the choice is not as meaningful in the sense that either the player cannot own the choice, or the choice was always going to lead somewhere anyway so it didn't really matter. Also, it's not impossible. In Apocalypse World, for example, boring outcomes are explicitly against the rules; Well, that settles it then. All I have to do is forbid something by rule and it can never happen. it's actually easier to obtain interesting outcomes for any group that has more creativity than a lump of lead. ...
  • 03:55 PM - 77IM mentioned Shiroiken in post Sinister Secret of Saltmarsh, off to a good start
    That's impossible. In fact, it's self-contradictory. By definition, if the player decision - whether smart or stupid - always leads to ever more interesting decisions, then those decisions are not interesting. If regardless of what I choose, I'm going to get an interesting result, then the decision itself is not meaningful. I could roll the dice or flip a coin for every choice. What does it matter? It matters because the interesting consequences could be very different. Both interesting, but different. Also, it's not impossible. In Apocalypse World, for example, boring outcomes are explicitly against the rules; it's actually easier to obtain interesting outcomes for any group that has more creativity than a lump of lead. The difficulty for me is that D&D is much more preparation-based, which makes this a bit harder to pull off. (I am starting to think that Shiroiken's advice of "take a 15 minute break" is probably the best thing on this thread.) Fundamentally, an RPG is a cooperative endeavor that requires a certain sort of active participation by all parties. If the players make interesting choices, you can always have interesting consequences. But there are some sorts of choices you can't give interesting consequences and still have choice be meaningful. ... There is only so much the GM can do to put in what the players are leaving out. This part, I definitely agree with. The players bear equal responsibility for making the game FUN. "Let's just burn down the adventure" is probably the most recognizable example of a decision that, in a D&D adventure, puts a lot of burden on the DM to very suddenly come up with a bunch of interesting stuff to replace all the stuff that just got burned down...

Tuesday, 22nd January, 2019

  • 12:03 AM - TaranTheWanderer mentioned Shiroiken in post Detect Thoughts spell doubt: can I concentrate on the target without going deeper into its mind?
    That's the only way the caster can remain "on" one person round after round. You can't stay on a person's surface thoughts continuously... after the first round of surface thoughts, the next round you have to probe deeper. Or if you don't want to probe deeper, you either move to another person or you end the spell. I don't really agree with this interpretation. My interpretation is closer Shiroiken s' interpretation. The exact quote is, "As an action, you CAN either shift your attention to another creature's thoughts or attempt to probe further." Nothing in the text says you "MUST USE YOUR ACTION" to shift your attention... So, I interpret it this way: You can read surface thoughts...and choose not to use any action at all and just stay on one person... If you so choose, you may use an action to do something different. The spell stipulates what That action can do: change target or probe deeper. I'm not saying DEFCON is wrong. I just read it differently. Your table has to decide how to play it. Edit: And wording aside, my reasoning for not forcing someone to have to move it is this: If you are forced to move it, a player is just going to keep moving it to and fro between the target subject and another random person, perhaps even an ally. So, for an interrogation which is measured in minutes (or hours)and not 'rounds', it's kind of a moot point whether you...

Thursday, 20th December, 2018

  • 01:15 PM - TaranTheWanderer mentioned Shiroiken in post Character Death Variant
    That kind of situation....I have a Base HP of 16 and I'm at 20 HP therefore I'm in big trouble.....is kind of what we're going for, but it's also an area of concern. The idea is to do away with the "I'm fine till at 0 HP" thinking, but we didn't want to incorporate "death spiral" type mechanics, where their ability or potency weakens with damage. But adding the option to drop unconscious after any hit helps mitigate a bit of the swingy risk at play, but still gives the players some level of control. It's a good idea. So, what both you and Shiroiken are talking about is the Concession rule in FATE. It works well, and this is how it works: You can concede at any time, even after the DM says you are going to be attacked but BEFORE the dice gets rolled. The player who concedes gets to narrate their concession. Examples: -You get hit by an Ogre and have 20 hit points left. On your turn you attack the ogre and say, "I'm only barely able to stand, in a final ditch effort, I attack the ogre but the exertion causes me to fall unconscious." - You get hit by an Ogre, the fight continues and, on the Ogres next turn, the DM says, "The Ogre attacks you!" "Don't bother rolling! I concede the fight. 'The ogres club comes down and I barely have time to shield myself as the club grazes my head, knocking me unconscious as I go sprawling under a bush.'." Obviously, you can concede before the fight starts...that just called surrendering. Or surrender any time...there's probably no need to formalize the rules around surrendering...

Friday, 30th November, 2018

  • 10:12 AM - MNblockhead mentioned Shiroiken in post How do you do secret doors?
    I roll a d20 against the party's passive perception, using a modifier equal to the DC of the door -9. If it beats everyone's Passive Perception, then it's not seen. If someone is actively searching, I allow either a Perception or Investigation (player's choice) instead. Once found, an Investigation check is required to figure out how to open it. Shiroiken, curious why you use "-9" ? -10 seems more in keeping with 5e (unless I'm missing something). How do you handle advantage on Perception? RAW is to apply +5 to passive score but I could also see handling it as 2 rolls and taking the lower (since trying to roll under instead of over).

Monday, 26th November, 2018

  • 12:50 AM - Laurefindel mentioned Shiroiken in post How do you do secret doors?
    I get the concern about passive perception...it’s one of the things where you are damned either way. If you go with passive...a party either auto succeeds or auto fails. With rolling, due to the math of multiple characters rolling, the chance to spot goes way up...so you often have to raise the DC to compensate. And it takes more time. A poster above proposed a third possibility, and the more I think about it, the better I like the idea: the door rolls its own ability check! [edit] that was @Shiroiken in this post So instead of having a set DC, the door has some sort of "hiding bonus" (presumably set by the makers of the secret door) and when the PC walk in front of it, the DM makes a check for the door (DC = passive perception). If the check is successful, the door remains hidden. Otherwise, it is discovered. The DM even has the possibility of giving the door "advantage" if he/she wants to (covered in snow/dust, overgrown with vines and moss, etc). This way, players don’t get a hint for rolling perception out of the blue (and get four attempts for a 4-player party), and passive perception is not always a auto-win/auto-lose.

Thursday, 18th October, 2018

  • 02:09 PM - jasper mentioned Shiroiken in post My (Personal) Early Evaluation of the D&D 5thEd System – Wall of Text
    AlterEgo....Not just one store. I've been to AL in 4 different stores in 3 different states. All charged $5 and said they were 'supposed' to because of AL rules. None of them charge for a PFS or SW game at the same store. The only place that didn't charge was AL at a bar. But even they said they were told they were supposed to charge but didn't because we all came in and bought plenty of drinks and food. ....... Ok I have review all the AL docs I have on hand and I don't find this rule. Are they "WPN" ( I think those are the initials ) stores? If you have facebook join the Adventure League Facebook book page, and ask if this an official. Never mind. I just ask there if a $5 cover was required. Will update if the post gets approved and answered. *** Shiroiken 13. I can't comment on AL, because I don't participate in any organized play anymore. When they started charging the DM to run events, I quit and never looked back. When did this happen? I started AL back in July 2016 and never been charged. Ok I do generally buy my own modules. *** elterEgo I own Seasons 1-8 AL adventures. Some con create and Adept modules. How about you list the adventures you have game with and some the problems in the modules. That way we can see if was bad editing on the module or bad dming.

Tuesday, 18th September, 2018

  • 07:11 PM - Sadras mentioned Shiroiken in post Mitigating players spamming Help, Guidance, Bardic Inspiration, and oh I’ll roll too?
    Interesting. In every 5e table I’ve sat at where Bardic Inspiration or Guidance was used, I saw it used at the time of the check. But you’re saying the correct way is to use them before any check is called for? So the players approach the Duke’s estate, descend to the entrance to the Tomb, or are about to study a book of arcane lore...and Bardic Inspiration or Guidance would be used in advance? I'm not @Shiroiken, but that is exactly what I meant by Immediate vs Prepared. The correct way is to cast the Guidance or provide Bardic Inspiration before the check is required - it rightly should to happen before the active skill use. With group lore checks, do you have the whole party (or whomever is involved/interested) roll, irrespective of proficiency in the pertinent skill? If there is more than one person proficient in the lore, just provide Advantage. If only one person is proficient only they should be allowed to roll - others would not be able to assist. Do you mean you individually don’t allow re-checks, so the Rogue couldn’t attempt to pick the lock but the Warlock with thieves tools proficiency could try? Or do you mean you don’t allow re-checks systemically, so once the Rogue fails to pick a lock that lock is unpickable to the entire party until something major changes? In that instance, if the rogue or the warlock attempted, I would add a complication whether it was a success or...

Sunday, 26th August, 2018

  • 07:39 PM - Oofta mentioned Shiroiken in post How come BBEG coming out never have magic weapons or items?
    I give the bad guys magical weapons depending on the campaign and whether I think I need to up the threat level a little bit. Like Shiroiken mentioned, traditionally most people don't because the PCs will consider it as loot. In addition, the default assumption is that magic items are fairly rare. I have a fairly high magic world so I give the bad guys weapons as appropriate. However, they are frequently cursed and only usable by evil creatures (for various reasons depending on campaign). Since I don't allow evil characters and a blade that needs to be fueled by the blood of an innocent isn't going to be have any value on the open market, I don't have the loot problem. Unless, of course I want to.

Wednesday, 27th June, 2018


Friday, 27th April, 2018

  • 02:28 PM - Oofta mentioned Shiroiken in post Find Steed's Hit Points
    As Shiroiken said, the text is just a holdover from previous editions where the steed was an enhanced version. In my home campaign I give them a little extra oomph, but that's a house rule.

Monday, 12th February, 2018

  • 05:07 AM - Nevvur mentioned Shiroiken in post How long til you modified 5e?
    Thanks to everyone who has responded and/or voted so far. Some remarks: I didn't think "immediately" would be such a common response. I would've included it as an option on the poll if I suspected it would be. @Shiroiken : You wrote that 5e is great for customization. Out of curiosity, how would you compare the customizability of 5e to earlier editions, assuming you have experience with any of them? (open question if anyone else wants to respond) @Satyrn: You mentioned inventing new monsters doesn't count as modifying. I respectfully disagree, but it wouldn't surprise me to learn I'm in the minority in defining homebrew content as such. The distinction for me is whether the thing implies consideration of mechanical impact on game play. Something to do with the mystical developer's "stamp of approval" some GMs prefer or require before giving a thing serious consideration for inclusion in their own games. Not that anyone needs WotC's approval to modify the game and have fun doing it, and anyway, custom monsters are some of the lowest-impact form of house rules (again, as I define it). Even so, I'd like to avoid derailing the thread with a debate about semantics. However you and others approach the ques...

Wednesday, 27th December, 2017

  • 05:15 AM - Hawk Diesel mentioned Shiroiken in post Advice wanted on Player Vs Player Situation
    ...willing to accept help from the necromancer and has been assisted by the necromancer's minions and powers. So even if the rogue believes this power is potentially bad or corrupting, what responsibility does he take for complacency? Also, if they have been traveling together and battling on the same side, there is an assumption that they have saved each other's lives from time to time. Outside of complete sociopaths, it should not be a decision made lightly or easily to kill a brother-in-arms. Also, how does Harry believe the others are going to respond? These are people that have a bond forged in the fires of battle. Even if Derek has the potential to fall as the first necromancer character did, how is the party going to look at Harry? Are they going to see someone that stopped a future Hitler before he had a chance to do real damage? Or as someone that just killed a friend in his sleep, and may decide to do the same to the others when Harry feels justified? While I agree with Shiroiken that a DM should remain neutral and move the story along for everyone's enjoyment, it is also the DM's job to help flesh out the player characters. I would be having this conversation with the player and asking these questions, and pointing out the inconsistencies such as how he justified traveling and fighting with the necromancer for so long and now all of a sudden feels this person should die. I would ask the player to develop a sense of how these feelings and decisions came to be, while pointing out the potential consequences of his actions. Because not only might the group turn on Harry for killing Derek, but if Derek's character has done nothing to break the law then Harry is going to be a murderer, plain and simple. No matter how badly he may have been trying to reform in the past, he has just elevated and escalated his threat level to society and become a vigilante to be hunted by the law. And while I am not familiar with the module, but if the group has any fame or notoriety f...

Monday, 4th December, 2017

  • 04:14 PM - jasper mentioned Shiroiken in post Players Self-Assigning Rolls
    I have agree with Shiroiken “The primary reason is to prevent the "dice determine everything" mentality that some players adopt” over @5eku “how does "the player rolled ahead" have any effect on the GM”. Rolling ahead interrupts the dm while he is giving out information. The player nor the pc knows if a roll is needed. I even a player roll a knowledge check to determine the correct hallway to take. This is after I told the group to listen, take notes, and repeated the data dump three times. So he wanted a die roll to supersede what was a player choice. Or being Snaky… 5ekyu “ The tall dark handsome strange tells of the tell tale heart in which …. Jasper rolls, die hits the table. “That is 12 so 16 on insight so I know he is lying, 14 I going to use deception to shake him down for more money, 15 on sleight of hand to pick his pocket for the needed map, 12 on initiative and I ready my ray of frost if he has a higher initiative!”. Or Jasper, “ the party enters the room, is 40 by 40 has statue of a drago...

Monday, 16th October, 2017

  • 12:28 AM - Nevvur mentioned Shiroiken in post Forced Movement in 5e ?
    ...ong before (relatively speaking) you reached the maximum distance, providing an opportunity to catch the ledge. A Dexterity saving throw is appropriate in virtually every case, and as others have suggested, the DC can be modified by factors like creature size (and appendages), terrain, and distance beyond the ledge. You wrote you're looking for consistency, so maybe something like this: Dexterity saving throw DC 10 Creature size: S = +5, M = 0, L = -5, H = -10. Assumes the creature has limbs that can grab the ledge. A gorgon could reasonably be expected to simply plummet. Terrain: Rough/obstacles = -5, Flat = 0, Smooth = +5, Slippery = +10 Push distance beyond ledge: 5 feet = 0, 10 = feet = +5, 15 feet = +10 Again, just to be clear, I don't actually use a formal system to handle forced movement over ledges, mostly because it doesn't come up enough in my games. However, I would probably arrive at a DC similar to what the above prescribes when making a spot call for the DC. Shiroiken hints at the subject, but one thing I haven't seen mentioned yet is to base the ruling on the style of game. In a game of gritty realism, I'm going to take the immediacy of gravity into greater consideration. In a wuxia game, gravity might not come into play until the end of the forced movement, effectively preventing a catch check if the distance beyond the ledge is greater than the reach of the creature. Regardless of the game style, I'm permissive about letting mooks fly off the edge without a save. I've also designed combats that would be deadly+ if the PCs didn't try to push enemies off ledges.

Saturday, 14th October, 2017

  • 11:39 PM - Ristamar mentioned Shiroiken in post I don't use Passive Perception
    Shouldn't it be +4, though? EDIT: Wow, rough evening, my math/logic was a total failure on the first pass. Using the example Shiroiken provided, a human with an 11 PP (inferring no proficiency, +1 Wis modifier) has a 40% chance to detect a DC 15 trap when converted to a d20 + 3 DC. The trap is found on a natural die roll of 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, or 8. If the same human was actively making a check against a static DC 15 trap, he'd also have a 35% chance with d20 + modifier. The trap is found on a natural die roll of 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, or 20. So, yes, +4 is correct for a randomly generated DC since ties still indicate successful detection assuming the standard ability check versus target DC mechanic. However, if you are treating the trap as an opposed roll where a tie does not indicate success (the situation remains unchanged, thus the trap is not detected), you would use +3 instead.

Thursday, 21st September, 2017


Sunday, 4th June, 2017

  • 01:26 PM - clearstream mentioned Shiroiken in post Making Combat More Mobile
    Trust me on this : you don't want fights to become more mobile. In the group I DM for, there's a Barbarian/Rogue with the Mobile feat and it's utterly ridiculous. He strikes, then retreats 50 feet (or 100 feet if he needs to). Try to picture that seriously, it makes no sense at all. Good advice. I feel like it can make sense, but as your example goes on to show, it can be very annoying. the other players were bored to death because both the Deva and the player were moving too fast for them to catch up with, and the Barbarian was bent on retreating AWAY from the group because he didn't want to give the angel a chance to hit him. Ugh. Possibly fun for the Barbarian, but dull for the other players. What I think I want to see is more shifting and changing of targets while retaining coherence. Perhaps then the advice from Shiroiken above makes most sense: make more use of moving around enemies without leaving their reach.


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Wednesday, 17th July, 2019

  • 07:07 AM - GreenTengu quoted Shiroiken in post Shoe Horning the Races by Class?
    Unlike some of the prior editions, 5E does mechanically reward stereotypes. Dwarves make great warriors and clerics. Elves are good at magic and archery. Halflings are awesome thieves. Half Elf Bard is good instead of bad. Gnomes are excellent wizards. You get the idea. However, ability scores are not the end all/be all of the race. I've seen a dwarf wizard in 5E, because they got medium armor and battle axe proficiency (to use Green Flame Blade). Finesse weapons with light armor make Elves and Halflings good front line options, even thought they aren't the stereotypical front line warriors. While I'll agree that most characters are going to line up somewhat with the stereotypes, I feel there are enough viable options to create significant variety. To have written something this completely wrong, I can only assume that you have never actually played any other edition of D&D in your life and are just making up :):):):) up. Every edition had attribute bonuses. Every single one. They also had at...
  • 06:27 AM - iserith quoted Shiroiken in post Swarms of animated objects
    In my first campaign our dragon sorceress figured this one out as well. Her solution was fairly simple, because we were using Roll20 where you can make macros to automatically make fairly complicated rolls quickly. She always had them move in a swarm pattern, usually giving the command "kill this guy," and letting them go Cuisinart (she used a bandoleer of daggers). She'd roll all her attacks to determine the number of hits, which would then roll damage. She never really considered spreading the out, because she felt their combined power was better for cutting down boss monsters (and giants, who have craploads of HP, but seldom great AC). That's basically what my players do. They police themselves for speed and that includes just keeping them on a single target. It's not really about banning the spell BlivetWidget. It's just players realizing that it can slow down play and taking reasonable steps to mitigate that.

Tuesday, 16th July, 2019

  • 03:10 AM - Remathilis quoted Shiroiken in post Finesse rebalance
    I've seen a few in play, but not many. The first I saw was a half-elf paladin, who worked out moderately well, but was well behind the DPS of the great weapon barbarian and red dragon sorcerer. The next was an elf fighter/eldritch knight, but he was an archer so that's to be expected. The final one I've seen was a rogue who multi-classed into fighter (champion) to try and increase the chance of critical sneak attack, and he was... mediocre. I have seen archers (which I wasn't counting, as ranged characters they don't have much choice in Str) and I have seen an elf EK with better dex and a rapier, but I've seen plenty of paladins, barbarians, fighters, and even rangers in medium/heavy armor with longswords. None of them suffered for it. The idea that Dex is automatically better than Strength is really based on Dex having a much better save, and of course Init.

Sunday, 14th July, 2019

  • 06:41 PM - Xeviat quoted Shiroiken in post Legendary Monsters
    I'd also suggest looking into "(not so) Legendary Actions" on the DMGuild. It's a method to add lesser versions of legendary actions to make mini-boss monsters or to boost monsters like the hydra you feel should be legendary. Awesome, I'll go check it out!

Thursday, 11th July, 2019

  • 05:36 PM - Xeviat quoted Shiroiken in post Saving Throws and non-proficiency
    Someone on another thread (for everything, not just saves) put forth a rather interesting idea. It looked something like it was adding half the modifier... but at your proficiency for level -2. this made it so that you got your first +1 at level 3, then you get your +2 at level 10, and your final +3 wouldn't be until level 19. Made proficiency still relevant, while keeping non-proficient saves somewhat survivable at higher levels. The same thing could be done by making the save DCs start at 10 instead of 8, giving proficiency bonus to all saves, and giving +2 to the saves a class is currently proficient in like I do. But I guess it takes less modification of all the monsters and save DCs. Woops, read that wrong. I still stand by giving proficiency to all saves. A prime stat is still going to grow from where they are at first compared to someone's dump stat. +5 to your dump stat Save will still suck at 17th level, it's just not laughably suck like having -1.
  • 11:55 AM - Horwath quoted Shiroiken in post Should Baldur's Gate 3 be turnbased or Real Time With Pause?
    If the target market is primarily (only) D&D players, then Turn Based is the way to go. However, it will have a much broader market appeal (and make more money) if it is real time, because that is the common style of play these days. I know that is is a small sample, but from people that I have played D&D a lot in last 20 years, about 15 of them, all hate turn based games except Heroes of M&M 3&5. real time with pause just flows and plays better than constant start-stop-start-stop. Turn based is mandatory for tabletop, or it turns into LARP and then we get real swords and then survivors end up in an asylum.

Tuesday, 9th July, 2019

  • 02:54 AM - Xeviat quoted Shiroiken in post A Reliable Talent for Expert Stealth
    A player in my first 5E campaign did this. I simply looked at it and unless he was obviously visible to the monster (basically violating the rules for hiding), I pretty much just let him sneak around as much as he liked. The only time he was really challenged on it was when he was trying to hide in places where he might be accidentally visible, such as moving between columns. I think he was spotted maybe once between levels 11 and 18, and it didn't bother me, because he spent character resources to be that good and he never tried to abused the idea of being a super ninja. A PC with 20 Dex, Proficiency/Expertise in Stealth, the Skulker feat, and Reliable Talent is Batman. They get to do Batman things. Batman can still be challenged. You're right, let them be Batman. That's what they wanted to make. The wizard can go invisible and use silence to be super stealthy. Let your Rogue vanish when someone looks away from them, that's cool.

Thursday, 4th July, 2019

  • 02:46 AM - Tony Vargas quoted Shiroiken in post [poll] Which classes should be core
    Thematically, almost every class are variations on the Core 4. Barbarian, Monk, and Warlord are all types of Fighters. Druids are Nature Clerics. Sorcerers and Warlocks are variants on the Wizard (the original magic user). Bards, Paladins, and Rangers are variants of Rogue/Wizard, Fighter/Cleric, and Fighter/Rogue/Cleric. Pretty much only the Artificer and Mystic are actual new themes, and even those are tenuous (not to mention neither is really appropriate for all campaign worlds).Or, to dice it differently: The Barbarian, Fighter, Monk, Rogue & Warlord are all Warrior classes. The Cleric, Paladin, Druid, and Ranger are all Religious classes. The Wizard, Warlock, Sorcerer and Artificer are all Magic-using classes. And, of course, the Psion is a science-fiction class. I don’t think monks are a variant of fighters. They are completely different. What makes a fighter a fighter?Martial skill, in his case, proficiency (and beyond) with weapons, shields, & armor - mostly, arms & armor of a...
  • 01:25 AM - Sacrosanct quoted Shiroiken in post [poll] Which classes should be core
    Thematically, almost every class are variations on the Core 4. Barbarian, Monk, and Warlord are all types of Fighters. Druids are Nature Clerics. Sorcerers and Warlocks are variants on the Wizard (the original magic user). Bards, Paladins, and Rangers are variants of Rogue/Wizard, Fighter/Cleric, and Fighter/Rogue/Cleric. Pretty much only the Artificer and Mystic are actual new themes, and even those are tenuous (not to mention neither is really appropriate for all campaign worlds). I don’t think monks are a variant of fighters. They are completely different. What makes a fighter a fighter? The ability to wear armor and use all weapons. Things monks can’t really do. I think monks are unique as much as any other class is.

Wednesday, 3rd July, 2019

  • 03:57 AM - Sword of Spirit quoted Shiroiken in post Experience with 4 players vs. 6/7
    Wait... 5E assumes a 4 person party? I don't think I've ever noticed that anywhere. The guidelines for assessing difficulty of encounters treat a party of 4 or 5 the same (and treat them as the baseline) but I believe there are at least a couple of places that specify that 4 is the baseline asssumption.

Monday, 1st July, 2019

  • 04:01 PM - Gadget quoted Shiroiken in post What spells should have had the ritual tag, but don't?
    Anything that summons should definitely NOT be a ritual. This includes the find steed spells and planar ally, because otherwise the party could have an infinite supply of disposable allies. I don't like that find familiar is a ritual for this very reason. Since most of the spells you mention are either Concentration, or specifically limit you to one at time, I'm not seeing the problem. Granted the Planar Binding/Ally is the exception, without the concentration limit or one at a time restriction; so it is theoretically possible to sit there all day and bind or call up allies all day.
  • 02:56 PM - gyor quoted Shiroiken in post 2E Priests Vs 5E Domains
    Conceptually I liked the spheres from 2E, but I remember the biggest downside: players needed to pick a deity with access to the Healing sphere, as magical healing was absolutely necessary. With 5E, it might not be as necessary, but I think most players would still choose a deity that grants them access to healing. I think a better system would have been to allow most priests minor access to most spheres, with only a few deities not granting Healing, but limiting major access to only a few. This way low level healing would be available to almost everyone, but greater spells like Raise Dead would require a true healer. Personally, I think the concepts of the domains to be acceptable, as it allows different types of priests with as simple a system as possible. In the Greyhawk Boxed set for 1E, there were different benefits that could be granted to clerics of certain gods, and I feel the domains help bring this idea about in a balanced way. There is also the possibly of deity related feats. ...

Thursday, 27th June, 2019

  • 06:36 PM - digitalelf quoted Shiroiken in post Definitive Greyhawk Adventure
    There was another adventure in 2E Greyhawk that was a better adventure, but I've forgotten the name. The party infiltrates the Empire of Iuz to rescue a political prisoner from Furyondy. It also has a lot of Greyhawk references that makes it definitively Greyhawk. That would be - WGR6: The City of Skulls
  • 06:15 AM - Garthanos quoted Shiroiken in post Feats or Ability Increases
    If you're going to split them up, I'd give Feats at ASI levels and give a +1 to an ability score at every even character level. This allows a slow buildup, rather than a sudden boost at every 4 levels. Sounds interesting would be more so if every +1 was functionally more meaningful

Wednesday, 26th June, 2019

  • 09:47 PM - Blue quoted Shiroiken in post What is the Ranger to you?
    The Ranger is the Paladin for the Druid. Just as the Paladin is the divine champion of a particular deity, the Ranger is the champion of nature. Using special skills and druidic magic, they hunt down their enemies and defend the followers of the Old Faith. Ugh, never. The trapper who's out there getting skins - likely a ranger. The demonic-influenced gnoll tracker - probably a ranger. The bounty hunters after the PCs - likely has a ranger. Rangers are good with dealing with nature, but to revere it is not a requirement of the class in the slightest.

Monday, 24th June, 2019

  • 02:07 PM - 5ekyu quoted Shiroiken in post Ability Score Rebalancing
    Not big on homebrewing classes & sub-classes. I wish the Warlock was Int instead of Cha, because it would have put another spellcaster using Int and balanced it out a bit. Oddly, despite my heavy dislike of 4E, I really liked the concept of the gish class (Swordblade?), and would love to have seen that as a 1/2 caster class like the paladin and ranger for the wizard. Your experiences have been vastly different than mine. IME everyone except the wizard, eldritch knight, and arcane trickster will dump Int, with the occasional RP type player who wants to have an average or higher intelligence character. Also, almost every non-bladesinger wizard I've seen dumps Str the same way everyone else dumps Int. This is partially due to stereotypes, but also due to the fact that the "penalties" for a low score in those is irrelvant to the character. It's a small buff/nerf, yes. This is deliberate. Having a low ability score is supposed to be an actual penalty, not something that is just shrugged off. By yo...
  • 12:08 AM - FrogReaver quoted Shiroiken in post Ability Score Rebalancing
    I assume you refer to the "knowledge skills" Arcana, History Nature, and Religion; if not, please clarify. IME, the knowledge skills are very DM dependent, especially since there is no specifically listed use for any of these rolls in the PHB or DMG. Some DMs use them quite a bit, making them very important, but seldom vital to the success of an adventure, even if they do make it easier. Other DMs barely think about them, and either give out the information without a check, make the check too high to be worthwhile, or (worst of all) having the roll give out completely worthless, or even distracting information. Obviously most DMs fit somewhere between these extremes, but it does reduce the overall value of these skills for most games. Giving Intelligence a slight bonus (languages and tools) helps make it less of a "dump stat." To be fair, I know some DMs also nerf other skills, but at least there is a section in the PHB or DMG that says how they're to be used. I also knew a DM that hated rogues...

Sunday, 23rd June, 2019

  • 11:31 PM - Draegn quoted Shiroiken in post How long does it take to generally take to set a campaign up
    If you are talking about starting up a new campaign world, it can take either a LOT of time, or very little. As a busy DM, you might honestly be best picking up a 5E AP adventure and just running that. If you don't want to do so, you might want to just buy an old copy of one of the existing settings for D&D, but they will require a little updating. Some DMs (especially old school DMs) tend to create a "top down" approach, where they design the cosmos, deities, and general world history before detailing out the starting location and 1st adventure. This creates some vibrant, detailed settings that are often used for multiple campaigns. The downside to this is that it usually takes months to prepare, depending on how detailed you want to get it. This is probably not a good choice for a family DM, unless you are a player currently and plan to DM the next campaign. Ed Greenwood suggests using the "bottom up" approach. You detail out the starting location (village/town/city) and 1st adventure firs...
  • 08:00 PM - Beleriphon quoted Shiroiken in post How long does it take to generally take to set a campaign up
    Ed Greenwood suggests using the "bottom up" approach. You detail out the starting location (village/town/city) and 1st adventure first. You only design a half-dozen deities that are worshiped in the area, along with a few power groups (nobles, merchants, thieves' guild, etc.). Give a little thought to the surrounding area, such as topography and potential adventures. Run a couple of adventures in the starting location, while dropping hints about the surrounding areas (from rumors and news from travelers). If the players seem interested, set up an adventure in that area, and start detailing it. The is a much faster method, and can be done in only a week or so, but the downside is that your players can ask for information you don't readily have, requiring you to make it up on the fly (or just admit to the players, and tell them later). This is what I did. Built the city I want to start in, brief over view of the surrounding area, and some local threats and what not.
  • 05:30 PM - bedir than quoted Shiroiken in post Ability Score Rebalancing
    The only change I've needed was to give Int a modifier on the number of languages and tools. This keeps it from being a complete toilet ability (negative costs you a language or tool) and justifies giving it a small bonus for non-wizards. Wisdom and Charisma don't really need anything, because they have some of the most vital non-combat skills in the game (Insight, Perception, Survival, Deception, Persuasion). Dex is a bit strong, but I can live with it. After Xanathar's and Saltmarsh the importance of tools is elevated enough in my campaign that the lack of importance of intelligence is the base game essentially disappeared with the change you made. I do have a tool proficiency for siege weapons.


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