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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Today, 03:40 AM
    Broad strokes on the reputation thing. The DMG has an honour system that, once you peel back the honour part, works really well as a reputation system. Its essentially a 7th stat that works somewhat like CHA based skills, but only in sitiations where reputation is the key driver. I'm shamelessly cribbing from an article by AngryDM, so credit to him for the basic idea. The stat functions as...
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    Today, 12:57 AM
    I'm in the midst of writing up an intrigue heavy urban campaign. If you've read the Gentlemen Bastards by Scott Lynch, that's sort of what I'm aiming for. Combat will feature, as will chases, as will heists and a bunch of additional social interaction stuff that's going to need a rules overlay, and which is not the focus of this post. What I wanted to talk about was gating an urban campaign...
    7 replies | 170 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Yesterday, 11:02 PM
    Yeah, we agreed on that part, which is the important part. The part I wasn't sure we'd agree on is how often that tool gets used, or the degree to which people realize it's even a thing the system can manage (and manage well). i guess what I was saying above is that when you color inside the lines of the CR system you don't get a picture of one-hit minions, or at least a lot of people...
    155 replies | 3147 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:50 PM
    Oh it handles it fine, but that's just not the way a lot of people run their games. The range of baddies tends to picked from a selection banded around the characters level. Not everyone throws in disposable one-hit minions specifically to have them act like one-hit minions. And when I say one hit, I mean 7th Sea one-hit, not, "I'll probably kill it with one hit". Anyway, we agree that D&D can do...
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    Yesterday, 09:43 PM
    I think you'd want a range of faiths, or at least a range of organizations representing various faiths that would allow for latitude in playstyle, goals and whatnot. With a range of faiths and goals you get conflict, which is great, but you also probably want some sort of over-arching evil to pull things together. I think a game like that would be a great opportunity to do something neat...
    9 replies | 249 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:21 PM
    Of course it loses to Elven Accuracy. That rule is bloody fantastic and changes the whole game for characters who have it. We were just talking about trying to massage some feeling into what is a much smaller and less impactful rule. Your comment about chances of rerolling for that crit are on the nose btw, it's what, half a percent or something? It's little. Noticeable, but little. That's why my...
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Yesterday, 09:09 PM
    OK, fine, weapons. ;) Simple firearms rules do work just fine in D&D though, as mentioned above, and in many, many other threads. Realistic and detailed firearms rules mostly don't, neither for attack nor damage, but there are other system that do that well (or at least better), and if I wanted or needed hyper-realistic firearms rules I would look at one of those systems. I mostly don't want or...
    155 replies | 3147 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Yesterday, 08:32 PM
    D&D and firearms work fine until you circle back around to realistic damage. Most heroes in most action movies have a very D&D relationship with firearms. The bad guys don't, but that fits pretty well into D&D too. What D&D doesn't really do, not when you follow CR system anyway, and previous versions of the same, is deal with the concept of minions or henchmen, at least from a one-punch one-kill...
    155 replies | 3147 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Yesterday, 06:25 PM
    People who's formative gaming years happened before the advent of the popular internet had a fundamentally different set of experiences that people who didn't. Also, people who actually played version X when it was the current system tend of have very different opinions of those systems than people who only understand them as artifacts. Prior to forums and chat groups there was no general...
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:42 PM
    Do you think triggering lucky in combat regularly with advantage is aimed at hitting or crit fishing? I think crit fishing is where you'll see the biggest actual impact on effectiveness, and that is maybe the one case where rerolling ones with advantage actually might mean something even if the other roll hits.
    18 replies | 499 view(s)
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    Yesterday, 05:25 PM
    I don't even think it's over-simplified. It's a very particular approach to damage that has a lot of built in plot armor and very much represents the kinds of stories that inspired D&D in the first place. It's very pulpy, and it makes for very durable heroes. Is that super-realistic? Good heavens no, but it was never supposed to be. Lots of other systems have more 'realistic' damage systems. Even...
    155 replies | 3147 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Yesterday, 03:21 PM
    To call D&D or any game that uses HP "fundamentally flawed" is to expose a certain level of ignorance about game design and furthermore to impose personal taste on the public in the guise of critique. HPs do what they do, and reflect the nature of combat and damage exactly as the designers intended them to. If you personally don't like it, great, don't play. But don't pretend that your tastes in...
    155 replies | 3147 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Yesterday, 12:18 AM
    If you want to take something really swingy, like rerolling 1's on a d20, and see that benefit on a nightly basis, you want to roll more dice. Obviously, if you roll X number of D20s the mathematical upside of rerolling 1's is the same regardless of the time frame of those roles. However, the occurrence of those roles in a given gaming evening, and thus the impact on how the ability feels like...
    18 replies | 499 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Sunday, 16th June, 2019, 11:56 PM
    Yeah, D&D is pretty clearly not meant to be played by players who need torches. If that was the case here would be more than two races without Darkvision. That horror in the dark storytelling vibe is definitely a thing, and can be done very well, but that's not the base play experience that's indexed by the 5E rules, or indeed any of the previous D&D rules sets.
    205 replies | 7529 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Sunday, 16th June, 2019, 11:40 PM
    D&D is a perfect fit with pulp 20's storytelling. D&D is pretty pulpy anyway, and the mechanics support pulp action in all three pillars quite well IMO. I don't know that I'd run the above, which sounds like pulp Shadowrun, but generally speaking pulp action work work well. *edit* Woodring-Stover's fantasy world of Ankhana has some good ideas in this direction. Not exctly 20's tech, but some...
    155 replies | 3147 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Sunday, 16th June, 2019, 11:35 PM
    Not really, the Savant class from Touch of Class II covers Intelligence-based combat pretty well. Multiclass that with Bladesinger and you're looking good.
    21 replies | 535 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Sunday, 16th June, 2019, 11:30 PM
    And Biff is a uniformly less powerful character for making that choice. Your table obviously doesn't have a problem with over-attention on optimization, but that's really neither here nor there for the current topic. In other news, Healer isn't auto-take now, so reducing to once a day makes in auto-pass for me. That's almost useless as an ability, never mind something I passed up an ASI for....
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Sunday, 16th June, 2019, 03:44 PM
    The grapple rules are weird for sure. Opposed rolls, not attacks, save and no saves. Yeesh. Plus thr fact that its wildly effective against most targets compared to normal melee because of their lack of skill. There's a lot not to like. When I said cinematically, I was actually indexing that classic movie trope where the sentry gets put into a carotid choke of some kind and rendered...
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Saturday, 15th June, 2019, 11:10 AM
    People have been choosing character races specifically for Darkvision since it was a thing. It was one of the main reasons human characters sucked for so long. If you want a level playing field take darkvision away from almost everyone. Let them by torches. Problem solved. Keep it for the legit subterranean races and no one else.
    205 replies | 7529 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Saturday, 15th June, 2019, 11:05 AM
    Even if you wanted to add a DC save versus grappling, which i dont think is the answer, DCs for saves in 5e always favor the person doing the thing so it qould be 10+ not 8+. Really though, if you don't like the grappling rules it's way easier to just not use them. Let you PCs grapple for effect when they want to and rule it out as it goes on an encounter by encounter basis. The RAW doesn't...
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Saturday, 15th June, 2019, 08:50 AM
    I think we can all agree the feat, full stop, should all be sky blue. If you're going to give up an ASI to get them they should be uniformly awesome, and they're not.
    72 replies | 2386 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Saturday, 15th June, 2019, 01:08 AM
    But ... all Warlocks can wield weapons.
    31 replies | 858 view(s)
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    Saturday, 15th June, 2019, 12:38 AM
    GW really does the best cult related stuff. I don't love WHFRP mechanically, but they write good material and they write great creeping darkness cult infestation adventures.
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Saturday, 15th June, 2019, 12:12 AM
    Errata is a part of complex tabletop games. WoTC is pretty freakin' brilliant at releasing mostly functional product compared to some other popular game publishers *cough*Games Workshop*cough*. Play testing is great, and it catches lots of stuff, but it doesn't catch everything, it's the nature of the process. The system doesn't really get stress tested until it hits the general public and the...
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Friday, 14th June, 2019, 10:44 PM
    Encumbrance can help with the healer's kit. The bloody thing weighs three pounds and a character or party can only carry so much stuff (STR is a dump stat for some whole parties...). I know, a lot of campaigns don't really use encumbrance, but in this case it's helpful. When the party is going through them at the rate of one every other day that 50gp cost does (or at least should) start to feel...
    72 replies | 2386 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Friday, 14th June, 2019, 01:39 PM
    The power of the feat is one thing, and Healer is good, but the other part, as mentioned above, is who is actually going to take it and when. A lot of builds have less ASIs then they'd probably like to get their concept online. Melee/Ranged characters, for example, probably aren't taking Healer ever, regardless of how good it is. Most spellcasters have their first three ASIs penciled in as...
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Friday, 14th June, 2019, 12:34 AM
    Or just stick with Chainlock and, you know, just take the Psuedodragon. Whatever props your tent.
    37 replies | 977 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 10:38 PM
    I think once per round still sounds pretty good. That said, if you can talk the DM into the UA version, more power to you. *edit* Mostly I'm not going to spend a feat on it. I'd rather take the actual feat called Lucky and double on my luck. If I wanted all y'all to be lucky too I'd use the help action.:cool: Having just said that, a Halfling Inquisitive with the Lucky feat is starting to...
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 09:30 PM
    Really, any spell third level or lower that gets a consistent sky blue rating in the Class guides should probably at least be glanced at. Some of the spell levels have less go-to obvious choices, and in a spell point environment the inclination, as you point out, is going to be to spam effective low level spells. There aren't that many that jump out at me though. At first level that could...
    19 replies | 562 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 09:04 PM
    Bountiful Luck is on pg 73 of XGE, so no need for unearthed arcana.
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 08:54 PM
    I thought it was that "gentlemen prefer chaotic evil dog-faced humanoids"? Maybe it was brunettes. I can never keep my bon mot straight, and your can never tell with Coburn.
    1470 replies | 39386 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 08:30 PM
    A list of Warlock build related things to ask the DM: 1. What kind of campaign is this? 2. How much social pillar do you plan on including? 3. Are we using feats? 4. Are we using books other than the PHB? 5. Will you be granting two short rests a day on a regular basis? 6. If I make goo-goo eyes can I have a Psuedo Dragon? 7. What is the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?
    37 replies | 977 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 08:16 PM
    He was obviously talking about Fire on the Amazon. Possibly Bullock's finest work, and a ground breaking cinematic masterpiece. Followed very closely by the cult classic, Sandra Dances the Can Can with a Line of Paladins on a Fresh Bed of Dead Gnome. A lesser know work I'll admit, but one of my favorites.
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 01:42 PM
    You mentioned a couple of pages ago that you liked twosix's implementation better so I thought that's what you were talking about but with scaling damage and -5/+10 tacked on. I'm not sure where you mentioned exactly how you envisioned that scaling damage working either, so I don't really have a model to run numbers on even if I wanted to. I'm not questioning any of the individual ideas in...
    206 replies | 5603 view(s)
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    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 01:14 PM
    Do we want both a -5/+10 and scaling damage? That seems like too much. I like the scaling damage idea as a representation of combo hits, but maybe the +/- feat should be -5/+5 at that point? How to word the scaling damage rule is important too. Is is going to be on consecutive hits, or just total hits?
    206 replies | 5603 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 12:49 PM
    Melee/Ranged - Ranger (Gloomstalker) - Dread Amusher - extra attack on first round with +d8 damage (3rd level) Melee/Ranged - Fighter (Battle Master) - Superiority Dice: 4d8 scaling with level (3rd level, short rest recharge)
    3 replies | 175 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 12:28 PM
    Yup, that's the rub, without some work Warlocks are far better blasters than they are crumpers. Agonizing Blast is the Warlocks signature go-to move. Its also the easiest way for them to do reasonable combat damage without resorting to MC dips or Hexblade. The Archfey Chainlock that was the original idea would be fine in combat going that route, and could focus the rest of his build on control...
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 11:29 AM
    Melee Warlock is probably best built as either Hexblade or with a fighter dip, as you really want that second attack if at all possible. The best option that keeps as much flavour as possible but still kicks some butt is to go Hexblade but with chain pact for the familiar. Hexblade works just fine without blade pact. You can dip fighter or not at your leisure. The kind of game you'll be in...
    37 replies | 977 view(s)
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    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 02:34 AM
    This is really the key to this whole idea IMO, I agree that Dex probably should have a -X/+x option, or at least something like it. I think the Champion would be a good test though. If you're fishing for crits you might actually want a reduced chance to hit and a reroll, although advantage does already have that mostly covered. I'd be interested to see if TWF with out permanent advantage works...
    206 replies | 5603 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 02:17 AM
    The logic of making at least part of the fix into a feat is to have TWF scale the same way as the other fighting styles, which is to say have at least some of the tasty bits gated behind a feat. It makes sense to me. The proposed fix we're talking about here both boosts TWF for the non-feat user (the reroll basic attack misses part), which is badly needed, but also adds some juice to the more...
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    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 02:03 AM
    Not really. Someone spent a feat on that silly shizz, it should do something. Or less than nothing anyway, one of the two. It really is just rerolls minus stat mods. I don't think that's OP in a game where advantage is king. If it somehow stacked with, say, elven accuracy or the common advantage grabs (or whatever) I'd probably feel differently, but it doesn't. Attacking with advantage takes a...
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    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 01:50 AM
    Mastermind 3/Chainlock 3 - Master of tactics and a sexy familiar. That's a lot of help w/o using an actual action. Help in combat is fine IMO, and even a light amount of attention paid to swatting familiars should keep things in check. Out of combat? It need to pass the "uncle Jim being helpful" test. You know how that works, you're trying to do something fiddly and your helpful but useless...
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 01:18 AM
    It's been many moons since I use the HoL mechanics for anything. Basically it's exploding 2d6 for everything - plus stat and (maybe) skill with difficulties set by the DM. After I scraped off the satire I found it to be a very compact and useful base mechanic that i use to run smaller adventures that didn't fit into our groups usual games. Some Lovecraftian horror and modern stuff mostly. My...
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    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 01:12 AM
    Something I've started to use more in my Literacy instruction, and which is going to feature in the RPG club I'm going to start next year, will be actual, honestly to goodness improv. Not because I want every session to be an improv session (far from it) but I found that improv as a warm up really loosened kids up and got them working together and overcame some of the shyer kids' natural...
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    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 12:51 AM
    Racial feats are in XGE on page 74.
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    Thursday, 13th June, 2019, 12:46 AM
    If you want to maximize the number of ones you reroll, you need to maximize the number of dice you roll. Seems like some Captain Obvious stuff, but that's the place to start. The best way to roll the maximum number of d20s in combat is to maximize attacks and maximize the potential for advantage. If you want to (mostly) cap the discussion around 12th level you have a lot of room when it comes...
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    Wednesday, 12th June, 2019, 10:36 PM
    I never got the chance to get more than passingly familiar with Hackmaster, sadly. I just wasn't in groups with the right people at the right time.
    66 replies | 2310 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Wednesday, 12th June, 2019, 10:33 PM
    Having what amounts to a reroll is categorically not the same thing as having a separate or additional attack. The number of 'attacks' I have in combat is the same as how many times can I possibly hit in combat. The TWF rule above is not adding an attack or the possibility of an additional hit. It's more like advantage really.
    206 replies | 5603 view(s)
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    Wednesday, 12th June, 2019, 08:48 PM
    HoL is surprisingly playable. Satire it might be, but the system itself is pretty flexible and robust. I use(d) the mechanics to do a bunch of other stuff. Things I read and immediately decided not to play. Rolemaster, Wraith, GURPS (dunno why, just felt icky about it), Ars Magica (as much as I actually love it conceptually), Talislanta, 4E D&D, Conan ... it's a long list.
    66 replies | 2310 view(s)
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    Wednesday, 12th June, 2019, 05:10 PM
    It's not four attacks though, it's the same current three but with an additional chance for a lesser second attack should you miss the actual Attack action attack. The extra is a d6 with no stat mods, and all told it's probably less impactful than just having advantage on that first attack, and having advantage on your initial attacks greatly lessens the impact of TWF, whereas it makes the other...
    206 replies | 5603 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Wednesday, 12th June, 2019, 01:30 PM
    Not necessarily. Maybe the first. Someone who agrees that TWF should not take a bonus action would also agree that the monks additional MA attack shouldn't take a bonus action. Flurry of blows could probably stay a BA though, at least in my books.
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    Tuesday, 11th June, 2019, 11:01 PM
    I second the rooftop setting for the big fight. Very theif-y and a great setting to use all the physical thief skills. Warehouses make great 3D battlegrounds too, with the added benefit of being more secluded. I might combine those two elements if I were feeling saucy.
    13 replies | 448 view(s)
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    Tuesday, 11th June, 2019, 02:47 PM
    What I did with my kids is run a pre-module exactly like you describe. It consisted of discrete, simple elements that highlighted the three pillars of play. Then there were a couple of bits that combined two elements, and then there was a very small dungeon crawl. That got them to level two and I ran a simplified version of Phandelver for them. The pre-module even linked into the Phandelver story...
    19 replies | 584 view(s)
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    Tuesday, 11th June, 2019, 01:24 PM
    Cyberpunk. Started some characters with a regular group and it seemed fine. I rolled up a Solo, because, you know, combat and stuff is fun. We were sitting around talking characters afterward and and I started to get the feeling that things weren't balanced, so we did a little thought experiment. My Solo against the rest of the party. I shot everyone else in the head twice, with a reload of my...
    59 replies | 3721 view(s)
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    Tuesday, 11th June, 2019, 01:00 AM
    I like GMs who are willing to admit that there exists more than just their way of running a game. GMs who are willing to read, and learn, and grow - all in service of a role at the table that needs all three. This doesn't even need to be about accommodating players, which is also sometimes necessary, but more directly about GMs who actively grow their skills. I'm always on the look out for new...
    18 replies | 669 view(s)
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    Tuesday, 11th June, 2019, 12:17 AM
    I think you guys should have a good time. Something that's going to be pretty key, at least if you want play to feel streamlined for both of you is you will probably have to change the way you present the information in each encounter. You're right to want to not overwhelm with the rules and at 10 that's a very real possibility. If he gets the d20 with rising difficulty thing he'll be fine...
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    Monday, 10th June, 2019, 11:58 PM
    You're not the only guy here Frog. And it's pretty obvious that opinion in the thread is informed by a much wider ranger of opinion and examples than just the one you started with. Don't fret sir, if I wanted to ask you a direct question, silly or otherwise, I would have.
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    Monday, 10th June, 2019, 10:49 PM
    If we looked at some of the actual high end nova builds and what they are pumping out at mid-high levels I think this conversation would mean more. The more individual attacks a players has (nova or not) the better the chance that at least in some encounters you will fail to find optimal targets for your optimal damage. Seriously though, you want to piss off an Assassin? Send him 50 goblins. Nova...
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    Monday, 10th June, 2019, 09:31 PM
    Now I know what to do with that Glaive/Shovel +2 Earthmover that I wrote up and never found a use for.
    13 replies | 387 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Monday, 10th June, 2019, 08:25 PM
    Monks have a separate issue similar to TWF more generally - a key ability tied to BA that prevents synergy. The Monk's ability is more baked in though, and they have some other options with dips to compensate, plus some other complicating factors, so that wouldn't be the top of my list of fixes, although it probably should be addressed at some point.
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    Monday, 10th June, 2019, 03:09 PM
    TO be fair, the balance issue with feats versus featless is a little different. In a featless game the issue is straight up class abilities competing for bonus attacks. In that game I'm not overly worried about anyone except fighters - i think the fighting style needs to not cost a bonus actions, everyone else can pick IMO. The other styles give you additional stuff w/o costing the BA and TWF...
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    Monday, 10th June, 2019, 01:26 PM
    I think that could work well, especially if the option to use your BA with the offhand was retained. Another option is to also/or base it hits providing extra attacks - lots of monsters have mechanics were they get an extra attack, usually with effect, if they hit their base attacks. That feels a little more exploding dice, but that might not be a bad thing. Either (or both!) might be useful...
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    Monday, 10th June, 2019, 01:59 AM
    It doesn't have to be removed whole hog, it could easily e removed viw a feat, or two feats depending on how much you wanted to gate the ability. All the other styles require a whole build to maximize, so I don't see why TWF should be any different. Basing it on feats also helps keep the fighter more at the top of the style heap because he has the most ASIs to spend. You could even leave TWF as...
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    Sunday, 9th June, 2019, 10:53 PM
    The bonus action is what it is, once a turn. It makes far more sense to change TWF if thats you goal since you need to change the fewest number of things.
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    Sunday, 9th June, 2019, 10:21 PM
    It would help sure, but its boring. Having that rule in two different places is already probably one too many. Its an easy fix, and just leaves the matter of TWF using the bonus attack.
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    Sunday, 9th June, 2019, 09:05 PM
    TWF might be more interesting if the difference was more than just damage dice. Damage dice is usesful but boring. Something in a rule that allows combo hits for added effect would be cool. Maybe even not just for TWF but for, say, any weapon not heavy, so sword and board fighters at higher level could getbin on the fun. I don't know what combos would like look like but something where sequential...
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    Saturday, 8th June, 2019, 03:40 AM
    Your anecdotes, my anecdotes, whatever. There are too many long time players here for personal anecdotes to carry weight in a conversation like this. However, since that's what we're doing, I've played with THAC0 innmore campaigns I can count, and worked at a FLGS for years with access to hundreds of other players, and THAC0 was never a point of contention or complaint, not once I can remember....
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    Saturday, 8th June, 2019, 01:18 AM
    Yeah, that's not really how THAC0 works. It does work with the sum total of your mods though, in that way it isn't any different than now. In your example if my THAC0 was 10 I'd need to roll a 12 to hit a -2 AC target.
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Saturday, 8th June, 2019, 12:30 AM
    The D&D crowd is certainly way different now than it was when I was in my teens, as far as the age range anyway. As is the Warhammer scene for that matter. That's actually a huge plus for me in both cases as I think the hobby is far more interesting, both the play and to post about, when that's the case. I've been a gamer for 30 years and I like having at some doodes my own age to trade the...
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    Saturday, 8th June, 2019, 12:20 AM
    Well, this thread really isn't about math, is it? It's about two groups of old dudes telling each other to get off their lawn. I'll take the Statler and Waldorf approach every time.
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Friday, 7th June, 2019, 10:48 PM
    It depends on the situation really. If a player wanted toncast heat metal and then something frost related to help smash the hinges on big friggin door I'd probably allow it. On the other hand if a player wants to be sniping stuff out of peoples hands, or other overly ambitious stuff I would probably say no. But the wizard wants to nuke a basket of apples with Magic Missile to create a...
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    Friday, 7th June, 2019, 10:39 PM
    Yup, using Acrobatics to climb is common. That doesn't mean it's not (up to a point) a self serving move by groups who don't want to see their Dex maxed characters slighted by something as plebian as a skill check. One of the reasons, maybe the main reason, that the skills are spread over the different stats is so that every build has something they're good at and no one stat dominayes too much....
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    Friday, 7th June, 2019, 05:47 PM
    People aren't happy because the skill that lets them climb stuff is linked to a stat they want to dump. There's nothing inherently wrong with the idea that Strength should determine climbing ability either. Guys who free climb are not weak. Is there an argument for Dex maybe playing a role? Sure, but that's true of lots of skills. There's a pretty significant element of strength involved in...
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Friday, 7th June, 2019, 01:03 AM
    I never had any problems with THAC0 nor did any of my regular groups, at least to the best of my recollection. I always did the initial calculations for my characters weapons ahead of time and noted it on my character sheet. What I did really like about the THAC0 system was the immense sense of satisfaction when you finally got a fighter down to a negative AC. Then you were in business. I guess...
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    Friday, 7th June, 2019, 12:15 AM
    I like the Lore Bard a lot more. One, he feels more Bard-y to me from a fluff perspective (so, whatevs, ymmv) but I like the role of the Lore Bard as a skill monkey, party face, and buff master. The Valor Bard isn't good enough at combat for me to want to trade in all the Lore goodies, especially Magical Secrets. The College of Swords from XGE would be my pick if you wanted a fighty Bard,...
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    Thursday, 6th June, 2019, 08:52 PM
    It doesn't have to be complicated or overly houseruley. If the length of the SR is the issue, make it 5 minutes, or even instantaneous, and just hand it out every 2 or 3 encounters (assuming a 6-8 encounter day). The 5 minute recharge isn't hard to manage and it won't detract from the flow of the game. Narrate it in as part of the encounter - it happens at the end of a breakpoint encounter (i.e....
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    Thursday, 6th June, 2019, 06:04 AM
    If we want to be ostensibly intersted in balance, and we want to 'fix' perception i think the only real answer is to open it up outside of straight WIS. INT gets dumped toi much IMO and giving people a reason to not dump it is good. INT plus WIS works thematically and practically, and i do think that it qorks better as a mechanic that isn't a skill.
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Thursday, 6th June, 2019, 01:37 AM
    The problem is that the classes, especially the spell casting classes, are pretty obviously balanced on a 2 Shorts/day basis. On that basis the Warlock, Sorcerer, and Wizard all balance out really well as regards spell levels available per day (as do Bards and Clerics for that matter). If you don't plan for, or allow (whatever) the 'standard' 2 short rests you need to be upfront about how it...
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 11:59 PM
    With 2 short rests the Warlock is fine. The whole short rest issue needs to be brought for every campaign before dice even hit the table. More builds than just the Warlock suffer with no short rests and it only seems fair that players should know what the game day standard is going to be.
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 11:52 PM
    Part of the problem with Perception is how ubiquitous the idea of 'noticing stuff' is. That's a way bigger catch-all than any of the other skills. It sounds, to me anyway, like more of an ability or even game mechanic than a skill - at least when set next to the other skills. This big idea encompasses elements that might reasonably be described as being related to dexterity and intelligence as...
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 04:50 PM
    MoonSong I apologize if my last post came off as curt or dismissive. I rushed to finish it before my break finished. I was really just suggesting that talking about Feats isn't inappropriate in a conversation about class balance, not when it so obviously addresses the specific problem. The fact that you want to compare them without feats is obviously fine, but then the only remedy, assuming a...
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 03:44 PM
    It's a fine patch, you just don't like the feel of it - which is fine btw, but how much you appreciate the feel of it doesn't change the effectiveness. The feat specifically addresses a key complaint about the Sorcerer class relating to spell knowledge and utility casting (which you agree is true). The fact that other classes can take it doesn't make any difference though, and that Champion...
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 03:38 PM
    Something I've been playing around with is Mastermind 3/Chainlock 3. Between your familiar and Master of Tactics you can use Help to give advantage to two other party members a round and still have your actual action left over to blast away. If you have the right two other party member that's excellent action economy and I'd bet there's a ton of good party builds that could kick some serious butt...
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 12:13 PM
    Welcome! Pull up a chair by the fire and tell us about that time you killed a Mind Flayer with a fork in a Waterdeep dive bar...
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 12:10 PM
    Do Halfling Warlocks count? Halfling Assassins? Oooooh! Look as his fuzzy little feet, He's so cu ... URK?GLUGGPFFFT Players are generally paranoid though, for sure. Generally with good reason though. The cats and little dungeon girls are the fruits of devious and sadistic minds who enjoy playing with the PCs heads. I like it a lot.
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 11:21 AM
    Are we talking rules or feels here? Ritual casting does exactly what it says on the tin and closes the utility gap nicely. The fact that it ruffles someone's fluff sensibities isn't terribly important. No particular offense meant to Moonsong.
    124 replies | 7462 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 12:11 AM
    I was thinking one up two down, just like the Last Man Standing threads.
    33 replies | 1120 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 12:10 AM
    You could open up a day spa in Waterdeep. You know, you could do Mani/Petis, Reiki sessions, get in touch with your Inner Halfling meditiation groups, Tiefling Hot Yoga. You'd make a mint.
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 12:06 AM
    This is very Odd. IN fact, it's Kind of worrying. What are we getting ourselves into here?
    33 replies | 1120 view(s)
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  • Fenris-77's Avatar
    Tuesday, 4th June, 2019, 10:00 PM
    The Hexblade/Assassin does a fine job stacking up static mods and gets multiple attacks, which are both good for DPR. If you dip fighter and add TWF to stack on the offhand attack even better (or better yet, go Archery). Between SA, Hex/cantrips, Hexblade's Curse, Eldritch Smite and the rest of the Blade pact upgrades you're doing a fine job with DPR. The Assassin nova is the icing on the cake...
    42 replies | 1517 view(s)
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Thursday, 23rd May, 2019

  • 07:24 PM - Esker mentioned Fenris-77 in post How many classes in multiclass is to much?
    I don't think we're that far apart, Fenris-77. My point was simply that final build and progression need to be considered together, since the best progression toward the best final build may be worse than the best progression toward a second best final build. So since you don't necessarily want to settle on the end result first and then optimize a progression within that end result, I wouldn't say that the question about high level abilities is necessarily the first question.

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Tuesday, 18th June, 2019

  • 06:47 AM - doctorbadwolf quoted Fenris-77 in post What Would You Want From A Game About Defenders of The Faithful?
    Some admittance that the faith and those above you in it are imperfect, and may be corrupt. That in defeating evil you may have to confront those who claim to be working in the name of good. A game that is conceptually nothing more than "faith good" and "not faith bad" disgusts me to the core. Yeah, there’s no need to put any kind of focus on political corruption in a organization of faith, here. A group can explore or ignore that as they please. What any game I make will have, regardless of what anyone else wants or thinks about it, is a complete lack of any canon instance of Paladins of the Church of Light (or whatever) refusing aid to the faithful of the pagan-animistic Vitari Dana, because of some perceived lesser status of their religion. If a faith doesn’t worship The Dark, it’s fine. No Inquisition, no persecution of minority faiths, etc. I don’t make grimdark media, of any kind, ever. I think you'd want a range of faiths, or at least a range of organizations representing vario...
  • 03:25 AM - Shiroiken quoted Fenris-77 in post [5E] Urban Intrigue Campaign - Gating the Sandbox
    1. Papers Please. Adding some bureaucracy, specifically identity papers and the like as necessary to move around various parts of the city. Start with basic residency papers, and add one other elements to gain access to, for example, the Guild Quarter, or various Noble Enclaves. Not a hard gate, but it would add some complexity, plus a nice use for forgery.This is a good starting point. A city probably has a foreign quarter that outsiders are primarily confined to, unless they have official business elsewhere. Start the players in the foreign district, and maybe get them an opportunity to get past a gate into a nearby district once or twice (a bribeable guard or buying some forged papers). Once you're ready, you can introduce one or two power players who can grant limited access to the rest of the city based on mission/adventure needs. 2. Actual Walls. Not my most original idea, but walling off various sections of the city helps keep things discrete, and helps delineate who's allowed to be w...
  • 12:01 AM - Riley37 quoted Fenris-77 in post What Would You Want From A Game About Defenders of The Faithful?
    I think you'd want a range of faiths, or at least a range of organizations representing various faiths that would allow for latitude in playstyle, goals and whatnot. This. As a member of a minority religion, I am painfully aware of what happens when one religion declares its members are "the faithful", and declares all others not worth defending. When you say "the church", do you mean that there is only one church? There are all too many historical examples. In some of those examples, one form of Christianity was on the dominant side, and bad things happened to other kinds of Christians, and also all others, such as Jews. In other examples, Islam was The Faith, Muslims were The Faithful, and bad things tended to happen to all others - perhaps not quite as bad to Christians and Jews, fellow "People of the Book", but worse for others (such as animists). In the USSR, Stalinism held a role equivalent to "the faith", only atheists were promoted to high Party office, and some Christian activists (an...

Monday, 17th June, 2019

  • 10:06 PM - MarkB quoted Fenris-77 in post If you could put D&D into any other non middle ages genre, what would it be?
    Oh it handles it fine, but that's just not the way a lot of people run their games. The range of baddies tends to picked from a selection banded around the characters level. Not everyone throws in disposable one-hit minions specifically to have them act like one-hit minions. And when I say one hit, I mean 7th Sea one-hit, not, "I'll probably kill it with one hit". Anyway, we agree that D&D can do this, which was my point, we may disagree about how often it gets done, but that's not terribly important to the larger conversation. It's important in the sense that, if you want to adapt 5e to a genre where minions are expected, it has the tools for the job - and those tools aren't even crude or rudimentary.
  • 09:41 PM - MarkB quoted Fenris-77 in post If you could put D&D into any other non middle ages genre, what would it be?
    D&D and firearms work fine until you circle back around to realistic damage. Most heroes in most action movies have a very D&D relationship with firearms. The bad guys don't, but that fits pretty well into D&D too. What D&D doesn't really do, not when you follow CR system anyway, and previous versions of the same, is deal with the concept of minions or henchmen, at least from a one-punch one-kill cinematic standpoint anyway. D&D can do that, but it takes an alternative approach to encounter design. D&D 5e handles it just fine, even with pretty much standard encounter design. The whole point of Bounded Accuracy is that it keeps opponents of varied levels relevant in a fight - you can easily throw in a bunch of low-level minions alongside the tough bruisers, and it'll work fine in terms of both encounter design and XP budget.
  • 09:33 PM - Oofta quoted Fenris-77 in post If you could put D&D into any other non middle ages genre, what would it be?
    OK, fine, weapons. ;) Simple firearms rules do work just fine in D&D though, as mentioned above, and in many, many other threads. Realistic and detailed firearms rules mostly don't, neither for attack nor damage, but there are other system that do that well (or at least better), and if I wanted or needed hyper-realistic firearms rules I would look at one of those systems. I mostly don't want or need that rules set, but many people do, I'm sure. What I find a little boggling is how much time some people will spend complaining that a system that obviously wasn't designed to do a particular thing, doesn't do that particular thing particularly well. Captain Obvious says Look elsewhere for your hyper-realistic firearms rules citizen, you won't find them here! Tra laa laaaa! Now it is time to fly again.... I agree but in all fairness, Captain Obvious could also point out that if you're looking for hyper-realistic simulation rules for just about anything you won't find them in D&D. Which doesn't m...
  • 08:39 PM - Sacrosanct quoted Fenris-77 in post If you could put D&D into any other non middle ages genre, what would it be?
    D&D and weapons work fine until you circle back around to realistic damage. . ^a more accurate edit ;) FWIW, I largely agree with you on everything else.
  • 07:36 PM - Oofta quoted Fenris-77 in post If you could put D&D into any other non middle ages genre, what would it be?
    I don't even think it's over-simplified. It's a very particular approach to damage that has a lot of built in plot armor and very much represents the kinds of stories that inspired D&D in the first place. It's very pulpy, and it makes for very durable heroes. Is that super-realistic? Good heavens no, but it was never supposed to be. Lots of other systems have more 'realistic' damage systems. Even the HP system as written can be massaged in a number of more 'realistic' directions for a DM so inclined. However, that fact that the HP system as written ins't a hyper-realistic model of vaguely medieval combat damage isn't a flaw, it's a design choice, a design choice people can agree with or, and use or not. Anything remotely approaching reality would include disabilities, hindrances, bleeding out, infections, etc. We don't include those in many styles of games because it wouldn't be fun. Don't get me wrong. I enjoy D&D. For all it's flaws, HP works. I just think that many things have to be vas...
  • 06:54 PM - Derren quoted Fenris-77 in post If you could put D&D into any other non middle ages genre, what would it be?
    However, that fact that the HP system as written ins't a hyper-realistic model of vaguely medieval combat damage isn't a flaw, it's a design choice, a design choice people can agree with or, and use or not. Yes, and also a choice which makes D&D unsuitable for any setting with primarily ranged weapons, simply because D&D is written to support melee. Unless you play at 1st level or have super optimized characters it is impossible to kill enemies from range before they reach you and go into melee because of the short ranges and HP pool. Just imagine another common western scenario, the wagon fort surrounded by native americans. In D&D western they would have no trouble to rush the people inside the forth with melee weapons, even if that takes 1-2 rounds and the entire scene would devolve into some strange gun-fu close combat shooting with the cowboys running circles inside the fort to shoot and the natives charging every round to hit them with tomahawks (*play yakety sax*).
  • 05:32 PM - Sacrosanct quoted Fenris-77 in post If you could put D&D into any other non middle ages genre, what would it be?
    I don't even think it's over-simplified. It's a very particular approach to damage that has a lot of built in plot armor and very much represents the kinds of stories that inspired D&D in the first place. It's very pulpy, and it makes for very durable heroes. Is that super-realistic? Good heavens no, but it was never supposed to be. Lots of other systems have more 'realistic' damage systems. Even the HP system as written can be massaged in a number of more 'realistic' directions for a DM so inclined. However, that fact that the HP system as written ins't a hyper-realistic model of vaguely medieval combat damage isn't a flaw, it's a design choice, a design choice people can agree with or, and use or not. People have been trying to make the HP system more realistic since the very beginning, with an article in Dragon about once a year. Introduce pain mechanics! Introduce lingering effects! None of those ever stuck or even took a foothold. I think there's a reason for that.
  • 04:07 PM - Mike Myler quoted Fenris-77 in post Mythological Figures: Billy the Kidd (5E)
    Nice and simple, especially refreshing for a character with firearms. Did you avoid the whole sticky question of reloading for firearms on purpose? I don't think it's necessary, but some people are really hung up on it.Figure he's carrying a few revolvers each loaded with 6 shots :)
  • 03:32 PM - Oofta quoted Fenris-77 in post If you could put D&D into any other non middle ages genre, what would it be?
    To call D&D or any game that uses HP "fundamentally flawed" is to expose a certain level of ignorance about game design and furthermore to impose personal taste on the public in the guise of critique. HPs do what they do, and reflect the nature of combat and damage exactly as the designers intended them to. If you personally don't like it, great, don't play. But don't pretend that your tastes in different damage systems somehow have a monopoly on what is 'correct' for RPGs generally. Instead of "fundamentally flawed" how about "fundamentally over-simplifies damage" or "fundamentally unrealistic". I'm perfectly okay with HP in whatever game I'm playing as long as it's appropriate. Games have to make all sorts of compromises for the sake of fun and ease of play.
  • 11:30 AM - CapnZapp quoted Fenris-77 in post Ridding Elves and Half-Elves of Darkvision
    Yeah, D&D is pretty clearly not meant to be played by players who need torches. The players usually use electrical lighting for illumination, so I guess you're right.
  • 03:53 AM - Garthanos quoted Fenris-77 in post Intelligent Blademaster Swordmage from 4e, how might I build him for 5e.
    Not really, the Savant class from Touch of Class II covers Intelligence-based combat pretty well. Multiclass that with Bladesinger and you're looking good. Examined this closer and wow.... that is definitely the right direction
  • 01:51 AM - Blue quoted Fenris-77 in post Making the most of a Halfling's Lucky feature
    If you want to take something really swingy, like rerolling 1's on a d20, and see that benefit on a nightly basis, you want to roll more dice. Obviously, if you roll X number of D20s the mathematical upside of rerolling 1's is the same regardless of the time frame of those roles. However, the occurrence of those roles in a given gaming evening, and thus the impact on how the ability feels like part of the character, number of dice does change the results dramatically. That said, advantage is a clear winner in the roll more d20s competition, so it's not a bad idea anyway. However, the obvious is a trap that will lead you astray. We're not optimizing for number of times it comes into play. We're optimizing for the change it makes. The amout the boolean succeed/fail changes. For example, if we hit on a 2+, our chance to miss diminishes twentyfold with lucky, since we go from 1/20 chance (a 1) to a 1/400 chance (a 1 then a 1). Getting four attacks instead of two won't make that kind o...
  • 01:36 AM - Xeviat quoted Fenris-77 in post Durable Feat is weak, Healer feat is too strong
    Healer isn't even close to as prominent or game affecting as, say, sharpshooter, but I notice no one is running to beat that feat with the nerf bat. There were plenty of feats back in the day about nerfing Sharpshooter and Great Weapon Master. I feel like limiting them to -X/+2X, where X is proficiency bonus (which would buff them at the high end), and possibly not let them stack with Crossbow Expert (because the hand crossbow isn't a "two-handed weapon", and because using a polearm like a double weapon is TWFing to me). But that's a different discussion. I'm hearing people say that Healer isn't a must pick. I guess after the fact defensive things are less important, or it kind of works out to free healing potions.
  • 01:20 AM - Garthanos quoted Fenris-77 in post Durable Feat is weak, Healer feat is too strong
    And Biff is a uniformly less powerful character for making that choice. Your table obviously doesn't have a problem with over-attention on optimization, but that's really neither here nor there for the current topic. This speaks to the value of not forcing the choice
  • 01:00 AM - Esker quoted Fenris-77 in post Making the most of a Halfling's Lucky feature
    If you want to take something really swingy, like rerolling 1's on a d20, and see that benefit on a nightly basis, you want to roll more dice. Obviously, if you roll X number of D20s the mathematical upside of rerolling 1's is the same regardless of the time frame of those roles. However, the occurrence of those roles in a given gaming evening, and thus the impact on how the ability feels like part of the character, number of dice does change the results dramatically. That said, advantage is a clear winner in the roll more d20s competition, so it's not a bad idea anyway. Well, ok, if we're just optimizing for frequency of use, then sure, roll often and roll with advantage often. Blue's OP indicated that he cared about actual impact, not just how often you reroll. I guess you could optimize for frequency of rerolls making a difference, which lies between raw frequency of rerolls and expected gain from rerolls. I was just pointing out that expected gain isn't increased by spreading out impact ov...
  • 12:11 AM - Garthanos quoted Fenris-77 in post Intelligent Blademaster Swordmage from 4e, how might I build him for 5e.
    Not really, the Savant class from Touch of Class II covers Intelligence-based combat pretty well. Multiclass that with Bladesinger and you're looking good. Not something I have read but that does count as homebrew to be honest. Though using level dipping style multi-classing is actually almost like the cost in some ways of 4e feats.

Saturday, 15th June, 2019

  • 08:38 PM - Riley37 quoted Fenris-77 in post Spell save mechanic for grappling attacks
    The RAW doesn't do what people cinematically want out of grappling anyway. The combination of Grapple + Shove Prone works fine for me, both cinematically and mechanically.... hmm, except that it doesn't benefit from the grappler going to the mat *with* the target, and perhaps it should.


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