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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Yesterday, 02:21 PM
    Why are you people venting about the metal armor for druids rule when there is a new and perfectly good "they're going to revamp the ranger again!" thread to vent in? At least that thread has the possibility of your opinions having an effect. ;)
    99 replies | 1514 view(s)
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Yesterday, 01:18 PM
    The problem with any "versatile" style is that there are too many members of the party around you fighting to make "switching forms" unnecessary. Once you get into combat, attack bonuses, damage rolls, and AC all just meld together into whatever melange the entire party has... and no monster you fight is so distinct in what they can do that a player can accurately determine at the drop of a hat...
    13 replies | 302 view(s)
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Wednesday, 19th June, 2019, 02:52 PM
    I've done a revamp of the Maneuver system myself... adding in new ones and making slight alterations to other ones. I've also taken some abilities from other classes to incorporate into my list, the reason being I was setting up the rules for a Core Four E6 campaign and thus didn't mind duplication since the classes that were being stolen from weren't going to be used anyway. And then as part...
    72 replies | 2090 view(s)
    2 XP
  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Tuesday, 18th June, 2019, 09:47 PM
    Using Point Buy, the standard Human bonuses in a "mix-maxy" sort of way will result in a PC that will have one higher bonus in the 4th best ability score over a demihuman (assuming the demihuman selects a class that aligns to their bonuses.) The arguable "best" Point Buy spread for a standard Human is 15, 15, 13, 11, 9, 8... with a similar matching spread for the demihuman of 15, 14, 14, 10,...
    17 replies | 599 view(s)
    2 XP
  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Monday, 17th June, 2019, 02:28 PM
    If it matters to you, it's fine for your purposes. If you require the people at WotC to buy into your premise, you're crap outta luck. And besides which it's completely unnecessary... as anyone at WotC could and probably will change the explanations as needed to fulfill whatever story requirements they need for the future. Someone is already dead but would make a good personage in this new...
    1 replies | 186 view(s)
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Monday, 17th June, 2019, 02:47 AM
    I have only played one RPG that has had something close to what you are calling "Novel" fighting... and that is Feng Shui. The edition that I played in that game had the barest minimum in combat mechanics. Instead, because the game was meant to be an adaptation of action movies, our combats were to narrate like 10 seconds of "action movie action" and then finish it up with like a single roll...
    57 replies | 1534 view(s)
    2 XP
  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Monday, 17th June, 2019, 02:21 AM
    Right. For you and the other 17 DMs out there who get so noodly about light sources and wanting to have dungeon waylays and stealthing in the darkness that the players forsake choosing characters based on personal interest and instead go straight to the min-maxing necessary to overcome whatever challenges you guys and gals put forth. But for the other 96.45% of the DMs out there... there is...
    205 replies | 7608 view(s)
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Sunday, 16th June, 2019, 02:48 PM
    If you are a unknowledgable D&D Target person... neither the names of FR or Eberron will mean anything to you. Thus the only thing that will impact you is the box cover art design. And seeing as how the Starter Set follows the FR design and takes place in the FR, it already essentially is a FR boxed set already. Whereas an Eberron boxed set will have a much different look, what with an airship...
    90 replies | 3444 view(s)
    2 XP
  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Sunday, 16th June, 2019, 02:41 PM
    It's all a big waste of time... both the alignment system *and* all the discussion about the alignment system. Just play your character and then worry about how you might've defined him with one of 9 boxes after the fact.
    232 replies | 5478 view(s)
    2 XP
  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Sunday, 16th June, 2019, 02:22 PM
    Vision is like spell components... If you think it's an important part of the game, anything the devs put in the book was not going to be as noodly or as in-depth as you were going to want the rules to be. And you were going to house rule your own system into place anyway. Which is why they didn't bother making any big rule system that was just going to be ignored by most people as a result. ...
    205 replies | 7608 view(s)
    1 XP
  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Saturday, 15th June, 2019, 12:47 PM
    And in terms of the Weapon Master feat... I ditched it altogether and merged its effects into Martial Adept, where that feat gives you proficiency in all Simple and Martial weapons in addition to the combat maneuvers and superiority die. Because really, all Weapon Master was was a fluff feat meant to allow PCs to re-fluff the weapon they could use into the form they wanted to use (despite...
    72 replies | 2556 view(s)
    6 XP
  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Saturday, 15th June, 2019, 12:40 PM
    Maybe overall, but at my tables I've yet to have any "obvious" choices. And as I hate to have two selections when a single one would do (which is why for example I got rid of the Acrobats skill and just use DEX (Athletics) instead)... having two different movement based feats was unnecessary to me. So after my edits to the feat list, this particular feat now looks like: FREERUNNER - Your...
    72 replies | 2556 view(s)
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Friday, 14th June, 2019, 10:45 PM
    Nothing too outrageous. Grappler and Tavern Brawler for one. Athlete and Mobile for another. Moderately Armored and Medium Armor Master. Observant and Alertness (with a few changes.) Probably a couple others I can't think of at the moment.
    72 replies | 2556 view(s)
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Friday, 14th June, 2019, 01:44 PM
    They already are good rules. Because the numbers are all close enough that when you are playing what you want to play the game is more than satisfying enough to make very few people have a voice in the back of their head going "Gee, I dunno... you could have done an extra 3 points of damage on that attack had you been playing a ranged Warlock instead..." I mean really, who in the middle of...
    31 replies | 921 view(s)
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Friday, 14th June, 2019, 01:20 PM
    Don't have a "favorite" edition of D&D, as I love every edition as it's out and I'm in the midst of playing it. But to answer the question... my absolute favorite thing is the Eberron campaign setting and the complete set of books that were produced for it during 3.5. I can't think of a single thing that is missing a book for it. There's the religion book, the dragonmarked book, the magic...
    64 replies | 1935 view(s)
    1 XP
  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Friday, 14th June, 2019, 01:07 PM
    Same. I use feats as character-defining traits, and thus have no desire to spread out that definition over several feats. If there's going to be a "exceedingly healthy and hearty" feat, I only need/want the one. So I removed the CON bonus from Durable then combined the two feats into a single one. And as far as Healer is concerned... frankly I don't care if its as powerful as most healing...
    72 replies | 2556 view(s)
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Wednesday, 12th June, 2019, 02:49 PM
    All right... if you're going to make an alternate 5E then just say that. Or if you want to make a personalized 4E variant then just say that. But if that's the case, then you have no need to worry about the D&D SRDs or the OGL. Do whatever you want with no expectation of publishing or publicizing it and keep it for yourself (which it looks like you, Zardnaar have already been doing, which is...
    70 replies | 1817 view(s)
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Wednesday, 12th June, 2019, 02:27 PM
    If you are trying to "clone" 4E and not just create an entirely new game for yourself, it needs to be able to work with existing 4E material that people already have. Thus you can't reduce abilities down to 4 or raise them up to 8. Because if you do, every single adventure or additional product that a person owns that they would want to use with their "4E rules with the serial numbers shaved...
    70 replies | 1817 view(s)
    3 XP
  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Wednesday, 12th June, 2019, 01:20 PM
    This will not be a "clone" of 4E. If you want to clone 4E, start by actually using 4E as the foundation. Every single section should already be filled out by what actually appears in 4E (using SRD terminology). Then, and only then, can modifications be made in an attempt to "balance" bits that are off. You can't add the advantage/disadvantage mechanic and two new ability scores and call...
    70 replies | 1817 view(s)
    2 XP
  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th June, 2019, 02:57 PM
    The long and the short of it is this: WotC is not going to provide stats for a gnoll PC race. Or at least... not until they eventually decide they will. But until that point (if it happens), if you wish to play a gnoll PC you either need to make up your own gnoll race statistics or find a 3PP who has already done it for you. After that, it all comes down to the campaign setting you are...
    53 replies | 4809 view(s)
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Tuesday, 11th June, 2019, 01:05 PM
    For an easy switch if you want a different methodology for attacking ships that reduces the "Go for the sails, Boo! Go for the sails! Yearghh!!!"... don't give individual pieces of the ship their own ACs or allow them to be selected for attack. Instead, treat the hull's AC as the "Ship AC", and all attacks normally hit the hull-- unless your roll reaches another less-occuring marker (like an...
    11 replies | 437 view(s)
    2 XP
  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Monday, 10th June, 2019, 02:49 PM
    In my two current Eberron campaigns I've turned every long-rest spellcasting class into a 'Known Spells' caster, and they all run with the same spell slot table, Spells Known, and Cantrips Known (except for isolated changes here and there-- Sorcerer gains an extra Cantrip over the others for example). And the three primary casters who normally are Prepared but now aren't (cleric, druid,...
    26 replies | 1084 view(s)
    2 XP
  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Saturday, 8th June, 2019, 02:23 PM
    Clone just the Fighter. Most likely, the person making the clone is going to barely get that far before they realize just how much work it is and then come to the conclusion its easier to just play the regular game without bothering to clone it. But if by some chance they actually get the Fighter fully cloned, then they can move onto the Rogue, then the Cleric, then the Wizard and so on. ...
    29 replies | 1192 view(s)
    2 XP
  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Saturday, 8th June, 2019, 02:17 PM
    When you are a DM, the more you treat a pet like an actual player character in the party the less concern there is about "game balance". They are no longer just mechanics to deal with, they are characters with personalities and relationships to the others in the group. Thus the players and their PCs react and treat the pet as they would another party member and concerns about dealing too much...
    5 replies | 352 view(s)
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Friday, 7th June, 2019, 02:07 PM
    Ah, c'mon, just level with us! The REAL reason you want THAC0 back isn't because you actually like using it... you just want to return to a time where rapiers didn't exist, barely anyone ever rolled stats well enough to get a paladin on the table, and gnomes were of the garden variety look and thus nobody had any desire to play those ugly things. WE KNOW WHAT YOU'RE ON ABOUT! YOU CAN'T FOOL...
    166 replies | 5581 view(s)
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Thursday, 6th June, 2019, 10:07 PM
    See, the reputation I've always heard bandied about regarding THAC0 wasn't that it was "really complex"... but rather once 3E introduced ascending ACs its reputation was "My god, THAC0 was just STUPID. Why the hell did they ever do it that way in the first place?" :) And this is why I have absolutely no need to ever play any version of D&D prior to 3E again. Because yes, THAC0 *is* just...
    166 replies | 5581 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 6th June, 2019, 05:57 PM
    Right. It works if the DM says it works. Full stop. Arguments from reality are perhaps the weakest arguments one can make about a fantasy world controlled by someone who gets to say how things operate. The more productive way to examine this situation in my view is: Why is this happening and what can I do as DM to take away the impetus to do it? Because it's almost certainly the DM's fault due...
    68 replies | 2587 view(s)
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Thursday, 6th June, 2019, 03:29 PM
    Speaking of real-life torture... BAYYYYYY-BEEEEE... SHARK! DO-DO-doDO-doDO... BABY SHARK! DO-DO-doDO-doDO... BABY SHARK! DO-DO-doDO-doDO... BABY SHARK! You are all welcome. :)
    68 replies | 2587 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 6th June, 2019, 02:39 PM
    While I agree that torture is far too common in many games, I don't agree with your reasoning on the mechanics encouraging it or your solutions for curtailing it. Your position on the mechanics seems to be one in which the players are asking for or declaring that they are making ability checks, which the rules do not allow. The DM is always the one who asks for ability checks, when the outcome...
    68 replies | 2587 view(s)
    5 XP
  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 05:45 PM
    They had their popularity, sure. Which is why it was strictly my experience as to why 4E began to run dry for me towards the end (despite getting several years of great enjoyment to start with). A lot of the spells that allowed to creativity that didn't snap to the grid felt like they were missing from our arsenals after a while. But if other folks never experienced that stuff previously then...
    245 replies | 10140 view(s)
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 04:34 PM
    I think one thing that would be advantageous for me were I ever to go back to playing 4E is that because I wouldn't have D&D Insider (and thus the massive amounts of extra powers that the character generator collected for me)... the classes would go back to being more disparate (and thus more interesting and compelling.) This was something I discovered throughout 4E's lifetime that I now can...
    245 replies | 10140 view(s)
    1 XP
  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Wednesday, 5th June, 2019, 03:59 AM
    Yep, agreed wholeheartedly. That's why in my games I: Removed Animal Handling-- use CHA (Nature) instead Removed Acrobatics-- use DEX (Athletics) instead Removed Medicine-- use INT (Survival) instead Removed Perception for finding inanimate hidden things (like traps or doors)-- use INT (Investigation) instead Removed Performance-- use Tools or Persuasion as applicable Removed Sleight of...
    70 replies | 1846 view(s)
    10 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 4th June, 2019, 06:28 PM
    Agreed. I purposefully ran a game for a group of people who had never played D&D 4e, but had heard plenty of bad things. At the end, I asked what they thought and the consensus was "I don't understand what people hated about it - that was awesome!"
    245 replies | 10140 view(s)
    5 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 4th June, 2019, 04:16 PM
    If the DM knows how to create and present skill challenges (as outlined in the Rules Compendium, not the DMGs), then skills are very important. Often my players are more terrified of skill challenges than they are of combats!
    245 replies | 10140 view(s)
    2 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 4th June, 2019, 02:20 PM
    It's a great game in my view. Just be prepared that combats will tend to run slower than D&D 5e, especially if the group is unfamiliar with the system. You or your group may or may not have access to the online character builder (I still have it). If you do not, that can make character creation and advancement a bit more time consuming if all the books are open for use.
    245 replies | 10140 view(s)
    1 XP
  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Tuesday, 4th June, 2019, 12:33 PM
    Everything looks fine. As is always the case about 75% of any set of balancing House Rules will never come up (because the players won't actually select or use the mechanics you attempted to balance)... but as a way of working out your game design and DM muscles, coming up with them and writing them down is still a good process. Have a good game!
    6 replies | 338 view(s)
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Monday, 3rd June, 2019, 04:47 PM
    Personally, I don't think Stormreach is the best place to set Ghosts of Saltmarsh. The most obvious place for that book in Eberron is Q'Barra-- there are meant to see several small towns on Adder Bay, and the entire area is surrounded by many lizardfolk tribes. So the land is already set up for Saltmarsh to be dropped in with a minimum amount of necessary changes to the area. In addition, as...
    6 replies | 339 view(s)
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Sunday, 2nd June, 2019, 02:45 PM
    Combat for groups that are 5 players or more already is unwieldy, this will only make it worse. How many PCs are in your group? The more PCs you have, the more total hit points and total available healing is available for the group. Which means to generate suitable threats for them you need to use larger monsters and larger numbers of monsters with larger pools of HP, otherwise they get...
    14 replies | 542 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 30th May, 2019, 05:07 AM
    Yeah, or the culture of the group in which you play. Keep it up and I'll bring out the exclamation points. But seriously, I don't mind shortcuts. I do mind it if the shortcut you chose to characterize my position isn't actually my position.
    664 replies | 26537 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 29th May, 2019, 11:50 PM
    As I think I mentioned, I'd characterize some of your positions and preferences as being rooted in D&D 3.Xe and/or D&D 4e. I think you've mentioned playing those games before, so this makes perfect sense. My "style" is based on the game system. You would notice my "style" changes when I run and play D&D 4e. Just like it changes when I run and play Dungeon World. That's my point here: I don't have...
    664 replies | 26537 view(s)
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Wednesday, 29th May, 2019, 10:07 PM
    Don't forget you also have Goodman Games who could license doing a re-up of one or all 3 DoD modules at some point too. They chose to do Isle of Dread leading up to stand side-by-side with Ghosts of Saltmarsh, so if at some point WotC does a desert and/or Dark Sun thing but doesn't want to re-do those three themselves... Goodman could perhaps do it instead.
    126 replies | 12332 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 29th May, 2019, 01:49 AM
    Yeah, I have a player pool which includes more players than seats in a given game and, often, multiple PCs per player. There is no way, especially considering my increasing age and penchant for drink at the table, that I can remember anything about the characters' stats. So I don't see any issue with choosing a DC for a task ahead of time which is later resolved by a passive check. I've had that...
    664 replies | 26537 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 29th May, 2019, 01:11 AM
    That's fair and my apologies for attributing to you anything that you don't believe. I think that the fewer exceptions to the basic play loop the better. I would also say that "basic access" is something I see as available to anyone through the DM's description of the environment and the things within it and it's on the players to speak up if they want to recall more information that may be...
    664 replies | 26537 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 29th May, 2019, 12:48 AM
    Notably, in D&D 5e, "passive" in "passive check" doesn't actually refer to the character being "inactive." It just refers to there being no dice. Unfortunately, it's commonly interpreted as meaning the character isn't doing anything in particular but I don't think one can get there from a reading of the D&D 5e rules. One can get there by reading the D&D 4e rules which refers to both "actively...
    664 replies | 26537 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 29th May, 2019, 12:23 AM
    While I'm sure it works with little issue at the table, I think passive check DCs for set knowledge is more appropriate to D&D 3.Xe and D&D 4e than for D&D 5e. In the latter, I prefer to simply lay out the necessary context and basic scope of options sufficient for the characters to act and let the players describe what they want to do. That might include recalling lore to introduce new...
    664 replies | 26537 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 28th May, 2019, 09:28 PM
    I thought that might be the issue. Perhaps this will help: The Case for Inspiration.
    23 replies | 756 view(s)
    1 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 28th May, 2019, 09:08 PM
    What don't you like about the mechanic? As it is written, it might actually work quite well with this disguise self tactic. It's one thing to look like someone. It's another thing to act like them and that may require learning traits, ideals, bonds, and flaws, which encourages the players to interact and explore to gain a further edge.
    23 replies | 756 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 28th May, 2019, 07:02 PM
    My position is that this depends on the rules of the game system and whether there's a fair and fun method of resolving this. In a game like D&D 5e, I would say there isn't, so my table rule is that if a player wants to act upon another player's character in a way that is a hindrance or is harmful, the player of the target character gets to decide the outcome.
    26 replies | 1006 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 28th May, 2019, 06:16 PM
    I think progress combined with a setback is good here - give them the info, but the monster gains an advantage as you say. That could be a situational advantage or just advantage on an attack roll, ability check, or saving throw.
    664 replies | 26537 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 28th May, 2019, 05:40 PM
    I recommend taking a look at the social interaction rules in the DMG. It provides a useful structure for creating a challenge as opposed to just social interaction for the sake of exposition. An "intrigue heavy social interaction kind of thing" is going to lack a lot of exciting stakes, unlike combat, so that's another thing I'd look at and the challenge structure in the DMG will help.
    23 replies | 756 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 28th May, 2019, 05:32 PM
    How many traps and secret doors are in your game? Figuring out how a trap works ahead of disabling it may call for an Intelligence (Investigation) check, as might a task to figure out how a secret door can be opened. How often are players attempting to recall lore when fighting monsters in order to figure out their strengths, weaknesses, etc.? If they're not doing that, why aren't they? The...
    664 replies | 26537 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 28th May, 2019, 04:30 PM
    I would say that the assertion that an Int-8 character is "shortbus" needs some proof, given bounded accuracy. It sounds like some adjustments in perception or expectations is needed here. If that doesn't work, the game does provide a way to address this via the PCs' personal characteristics. Just add a personality trait or flaw to the effect of "I'm about as smart as a bag of hammers and it...
    664 replies | 26537 view(s)
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Tuesday, 28th May, 2019, 03:30 PM
    As a DM I would go strictly by the description of the spell and rule that the target of the grapple is still under the influence of the spell and thus you as the attacker can make the roll to redirect an attack to one of your duplicates. I don't care that the attacker and target are in physical contact with each other, the illusion moves the images enough to confuse the target regardless. If...
    32 replies | 1172 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 28th May, 2019, 05:49 AM
    Sure you do, if one character climbs the wall in a way that is meaningfully different than someone else, then the DC can vary. If the approach to climbing is largely the same, then it is reasonable to assign the same DC. It's the role of the DM as described by the game to judge these matters. It's a good thing the game isn't even a simulation of a world of sword and sorcery let...
    231 replies | 12326 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 28th May, 2019, 04:12 AM
    It seemed like in your initial post you were considering a character for a specific campaign. If so, I'd be curious to know how your DM typically runs social interaction challenges and how you'd think this character's effectiveness would rate in that context.
    23 replies | 756 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 28th May, 2019, 03:53 AM
    If I had to guess, there's probably more of them than either of us would find desirable. That's especially true of DMs who consider this sort of character build and associated tasks to be problematic for their event-based adventure prep. There's a lot of incentive in such a scenario for the DM to treat the ability check like a saving throw.
    23 replies | 756 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 28th May, 2019, 03:36 AM
    Charisma (Deception) is what the rules say is the ability check used to resolve a task to pass one's self off in a disguise, if there's uncertainty as to the outcome and a meaningful consequence for failure. That is the task your character is undertaking. The spell creates uncertainty and, presumably a meaningful consequence for failure, by default which prompts the Intelligence...
    23 replies | 756 view(s)
    1 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 28th May, 2019, 03:13 AM
    In D&D 5e, the ability check happens when the task that is being described has an uncertain outcome and a meaningful consequence for failure. With that in mind, we can deconstruct how this is handled. Passing yourself off as someone else (goal) by using a disguise (approach) might reasonably be resolved by a Charisma (Deception) check, if the DM decides to call for one. Your character is...
    23 replies | 756 view(s)
    1 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 28th May, 2019, 02:38 AM
    The spell says that other than having the same body type, the extent of the illusion is up to the caster. So, I would say that this means you can look like specific people. That said, as DM, it seems reasonable in the absence of specific mitigating circumstances that it is harder to pull off than appearing to be some non-specific person. Thus, I recommend being ready to have to hit some higher...
    23 replies | 756 view(s)
    3 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Tuesday, 28th May, 2019, 02:16 AM
    "I'm just not sure if there's a point in continuing this conversation... allow me to continue it." The reason would be to verify the player's assumption that the earth elementals they are about to face are vulnerable to thunder. This will in part determine their resource allocation and tactics in the upcoming battle. I would add that the smart player in my view doesn't seek to "make an...
    664 replies | 26537 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Monday, 27th May, 2019, 06:52 PM
    That's the basic adjudication process though. First the DM decides if a roll is necessary at all. Climbing is called out specifically as being just movement except in certain circumstances. A DC can only be set once the task is established by the player in a reasonably specific way such that the DM can decide if there's an uncertain outcome and a meaningful consequence for failure. Climbing in...
    231 replies | 12326 view(s)
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  • DEFCON 1's Avatar
    Sunday, 26th May, 2019, 01:45 AM
    Another thing to note is that the rarity of items are not necessarily based on how easy or hard the spells are to get normally... they are based upon what the designers decided were genuinely how rare they thing the items should be in a default campaign. A Ring of Invisibility is such an iconic magic item (in literature if not D&D) that I suspect they didn't want to make them commonplace in...
    12 replies | 718 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Friday, 24th May, 2019, 07:13 PM
    Nah. See also alchemist fire for ideas on how to resolve.
    14 replies | 661 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Friday, 24th May, 2019, 06:14 PM
    It seems like the create bonfire spell might be a decent basis for ruling what happens here.
    14 replies | 661 view(s)
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  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 10:04 PM
    Me personally, I don't really care about "immersion." But I would care as a player if I'm asked to make a check without declaring an action. So as DM I would just honestly remind the players that they have X, Y, and Z as quests and that (if this is truly a sandbox game) they aren't required to complete them, but that taking actions A, B, or C would definitely result in those quests being...
    68 replies | 3468 view(s)
    1 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 08:59 PM
    I think that's definitely a good attitude to have and it helps if the players are onboard with purposefully putting their characters in bad situations sometimes, trusting that the outcome will be fun for them even if it's bad for the characters. That's certainly the spirit of the game as outlined in the rules in any case. At the same time, as a player, I also want to honor the DM's prep...
    68 replies | 3468 view(s)
    0 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 08:19 PM
    Man, I don't know if I'd want to live in a world where as DM I'm not encouraging stupid actions.
    68 replies | 3468 view(s)
    2 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 06:51 PM
    Basic Rules, page 3, in the paragraph about "winning and losing" in D&D. The "win" conditions are as I specified. This is the section of the rules that tell us what the game is supposed to be about (even if people don't play it that way sometimes). It does not say that the adventurers have to have a good time - it's the players this is referring to. The adventurers could be torn to bits, after...
    68 replies | 3468 view(s)
    2 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 05:01 PM
    The thing with burning down the house is that as with any particular course of action the players consider, they are well-served to pass it through the filter of the goals of play. The game defines those goals as the DM and the players creating an exciting, memorable story of bold adventurers who confront deadly perils and having a good time doing it. So the question the players could stand to...
    68 replies | 3468 view(s)
    2 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 03:06 PM
    Wow, you jumped on that adventure fast! I just got my book a couple days ago and haven't even cracked it open.
    68 replies | 3468 view(s)
    0 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 03:04 PM
    That is my reading, though I would say a sword is also an object. I think the main thing here is that incorporeal movement is just that - movement. Push a sword through this creature and it will take damage. If it instead moves through the sword, it takes no damage unless it ends its turn on the sword.
    19 replies | 605 view(s)
    0 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Thursday, 23rd May, 2019, 02:38 PM
    "For the purposes of these rules, an object is a discrete, inanimate item like a window, door, sword, book, table, chair, or stone, not a building or vehicle that is composed of many other objects." (DMG, pg. 246) Walls are also considered objects. They are mentioned in this section as well.
    19 replies | 605 view(s)
    1 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019, 11:08 PM
    Another option, only with less work, is to just play D&D 4e.
    320 replies | 11210 view(s)
    13 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019, 07:46 PM
    The rules of the game don't seem to indicate I should care about this as DM. The only exception is to encourage players not to waste game time or their characters' lives on bad assumptions and I do that. It seems more likely to me that Intelligence is seen as a dump stat because there is only one class and a couple of sub-classes that use it regularly for attack rolls and DCs and very few...
    664 replies | 26537 view(s)
    0 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019, 03:55 PM
    It's frankly hard to say what's at the core of this discussion anymore. What I do know is that if you want to call "thinking" an action, then because of the rule that players determine what the characters think, then there can be no ability check here since there is no uncertainty as to the outcome. The character thinks what the player says he or she thinks. I don't see any complications...
    664 replies | 26537 view(s)
    1 XP
  • iserith's Avatar
    Wednesday, 22nd May, 2019, 02:24 PM
    Well, the good news is that climbing in D&D 5e is a factor of speed and ability checks are only necessary if there's something about the climb that makes it uncertain, such as a slippery vertical surface or few handholds.
    231 replies | 12326 view(s)
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About DEFCON 1

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Thursday, 20th June, 2019


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Wednesday, 12th June, 2019

  • 01:53 PM - Yaarel mentioned DEFCON 1 in post 4e Clone − help create it!
    @Zardnaar, @DEFCON 1, @Charlaquin It is worth having balanced abilities. Rather than the eight abilities, it is possible to have four abilities. • Strength • Dexterity • Intelligence • Charisma In this four ability setup: • Strength includes hit points. • Dexterity handles jumping and climbing. • Intelligence includes the five senses. • Charisma includes willpower and empathy. In this way: • ‘Strength’ equals exactly 4e Fortitude • ‘Dexterity’ equals 4e Reflex • ‘Intelligence’ equals 4e Perception • ‘Charisma’ equals 4e Will So, for example, it is possible for the 4e clone to talk about the ‘Strength ability’ and the ‘Strength defense’.

Monday, 20th May, 2019

  • 09:16 PM - Sacrosanct mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Favourite D&D edition that’s not 5E
    ...ing off the top of my head). I don't think fans of any edition are more willing or accepting of 5e than any other. Maybe the OSR fans because they've gone so long being officially unsupported that they had no expectations of being officially back in the mix so to them, after ignoring 3e and 4e (literally over a decade), what would one new edition mean? We all long ago came to the acceptance that we'd just stick with our current stuff. Something 3e fans were getting used to, and 4e fans had a hard time dealing with because they never dealt with it before. But anyway, yeah, I don't need to tell anyone that there was plenty of edition warring and anger back in 2012-2014 from 4e fans. Which makes them like 1e fans in 1989, TSR fans in 2000, and 3e fans in 2008. Big shocker. (that's sarcasm). I'm guessing it will be the same for 5e fans when 6e comes out. But I will link to one post, because I think it turned out to be pretty prophetic of the discussion that followed, made by DEFCON 1 back in 2013, specifically: "Player in Nebraska today: "If Next doesn't include the Warlord as a class, then I'm not switching to the game when it comes out!!! They've lost me as a customer!" Cut to same player 3 years from now: "I can't find anyone to play non-Essentials 4E with me in my area!" *Edit Although, I did chuckle at this post. Not to pick on derron, because I've been wrong on my predictions as well, but it's pretty funny in hindsite: "5E will fail pretty hard imo. To get people to convert (and ignoring the people who always play the newest edition) 5E has to be an improvement over what the people play now. And it is imo pretty obvious that what 3E, PF and 4E players consider improvement is most of the time diametrically opposed. Also with all their "game to unite editions" marketing going on 5E seems to go more for a "It is not as quite bad as the edition you do not like" feeling which will please no one. I would be surprised if 5E even makes the same m...

Thursday, 21st February, 2019

  • 08:17 PM - oreofox mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Pages From The Upcoming Nautical D&D Book!
    ...e. I admit that. It's rather close to dandwiki with some of the content people put on there. But there have been some really good gems. Has been that way since they opened it up in 2016 (I put my first product up on there nearly 3 years ago to the date). Not many people I come across use the fan-made stuff. Opening more settings would give the chance of some gems popping up based in those settings. Also, what do you need to play Forgotten Realms in 5e that wasn't already available from the past 30-40 years? Why focus on Greyhawk, and not mention one of the other settings. Greyhawk and FR both have basically the same races. But why not open up Ansalon and Dragonlance? There are races, classes, subclasses, monsters, and other things rather unique to that setting that are not available using the generic Forgotten Realms products. What about Spelljammer? What about Dark Sun? I see so many people pining for that setting (I don't see the appeal, but apparently a large number love it). DEFCON 1 : 5 years ago, they just barely ended the playtest, and wouldn't truly release 5e for another 6ish months. But yes, not long after release, people were clamoring for a non-adventure 5e book. It took just over 2 years for them to release something that wasn't an adventure: Volo's Guide to Monsters. It gave DMs new monsters, and players a few new racial options. And people loved it. The next year they released the first fully player-oriented book: Xanathar's Guide to Everything. And people ate that book up. A year before Volo's, they released the forgettable and disappointing Sword Coast Adventurer's Guide. Now, thanks to Curse of Strahd, people are clamoring for them to release something for the other settings. And when CoS was released, and opened on the dmsguild, it was flooded with Ravenloft and horror-centric products, and it dwindled when Yawning Portal was released. Then came generic stuff, and when ToA was released, it was flooded with jungle-themed products. Release a Dragonl...

Saturday, 26th January, 2019

  • 05:05 PM - DM Dave1 mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Shield Mastery Feat
    ...ires the use of an Attack action. Since you can ONLY take Attack actions on your turn, you cannot Shove a Creature outside of your turn, i.e. as an OA reaction. You are reading "melee attack" as "Attack action", they are two distinct, although similar, things. Again, if it doesn't make sense to follow the RAW, just change it for your game. No harm done if you want to play it that way. I literally said sword swings and Shoves "both use the Attack Action, both are melee attacks, and both are able to be used as a Reaction". I did not read or say Attack Action = melee attack. My point: if a sword swing uses the Attack Action, is a melee attack, and can be used with a Reaction; AND a shove has the exact same 3 characteristics as the sword swing that I just outlined; then both can be used as a Reaction for an Opportunity Attack. I think my interpretation is RAW, you think your interpretation is RAW. Both think the other is wrong. But perhaps we're actually both right because, like @DEFCON 1 says above: Rulings not Rules... only I'm righter because I like to give my players more "Yes"es than "No"s. :p

Friday, 7th December, 2018


Thursday, 22nd November, 2018


Thursday, 25th October, 2018

  • 07:13 AM - Li Shenron mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Passive Perception better than Active Perception?
    I'm not sure what kind of situation you're imagining. I'm only going to consult a character's passive score if they've told me they're looking for something, so I can't imagine a situation where they hit the DC to find whatever it is they're looking for with their passive score but then I'm asking them to roll a check instead. Maybe an example would help. (Also for DEFCON 1) Rather than an example, a general principle: I use Passive Perception against other's rolls, but Perception checks against static DCs. There is then no need to sweat each time to decide what to use. The only decision I typically need to make is, when rolling, whether the player rolls in the open or I roll for her secretly.

Monday, 27th August, 2018


Tuesday, 10th July, 2018

  • 05:13 PM - Sadras mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Player asked for a favour: MC Barbarian-Warlock
    Was the character a Barb first or a Warlock first? By your title, it looks like barb first. At what level did the MC start? So we have just started a new campaign at 3rd. They have had one session so far and he asked me if he could not change one of the levels to Warlock. Generally I am easy within the first two sessions on changing up a few things. 1) Will this player also want to cast spells or cantrips while raging? Nope. 2) How, if at all, would this affect the advantage the player gains on Strength checks and saves while raging? Not affected. @DEFCON 1 - I pretty much agree with you on this. I have had a look at the both the barbarian and the hexblade class. There is no real mechanical benefit I foresee that would be an issue at my table. I personally think the player is building his character incorrectly, said as much to him. There are better ways to make the concept through Background, Feats, Skills, Bonds, Flaws and Ideals - including a makeshift Patron Feat of sorts if need be. Failing that a combination of class features from the two classes. As I see it the high Charisma is actually hindering him (points wise), he won't be casting offensive spells so he doesn't need the high DC and as for the Hexblade Curse minor healing it is not worth it if he only sees the character advancing to level 3. Leaving the ability points in Strength actually works better since he intends to advance in Barbarian and Hexblade Curse works fine with that. I think he is happy I said yes, but muddled that I provided so many possibly better options for...
  • 03:44 PM - Hawk Diesel mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Player asked for a favour: MC Barbarian-Warlock
    I would have no problem with this. As DEFCON 1 said, every ability is like any other. There are already tons of ways for other classes to substitute in their prefered modifier for attack and damage. Additionally, this multiclass slows down the spellcasting and invocation progression, as well as prevent him from getting the barbarian capstone while also slowing his access to brutal critical. The sacrifices seem to balance with the gains. What I would be curious about are: 1) Will this player also want to cast spells or canteips while raging? 2) How, if at all, would this affect the advantage the player gains on Strength checks and saves while raging?

Saturday, 7th July, 2018

  • 11:02 PM - Jester David mentioned DEFCON 1 in post THIS Is The Pathfinder Playtest Rulebook!
    I heard Jester mentioned on the Friday fireside chat episode :). As far as the possible alt covers for the core books, I'm probably down with picking this up, mainly for the errata printing compared to my first edition printing books. Yup. That was my tweet at roughly the 20 minute mark, quoting a DEFCON 1 comment.

Tuesday, 10th April, 2018

  • 08:10 PM - Hawk Diesel mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Curse of Strahd and Strongholds
    Thanks everyone, I'm really digging the feedback. I'll admit, I hadn't really thought about this until a flash of thought this morning. I backed Matt's kickstarter and was wondering how I might be able to use it for the current campaign I'm running. DEFCON 1 that is a good point about there not being much around Barovia. But I don't think they would want to make a "home" of Vallaki what with that mayor being so persistent about people being happy and participating in those parades and fests. Of course, I also have no idea how this group is going to proceed or react. I am changing the script for some things regarding Lady Wachter and her relationship to the Baron and Izek based on some suggests I've found on these boards, so who knows who will survive that event. But the Blue Water Inn already makes a pretty nice base of operations, even if not exactly a player controlled stronghold. Krezk would be more reasonable, but the players may stumble into Van Richten's Tower by then, which has stronghold written all over it. Also, I know that Death House is like... super cursed. But I like to reward my players for creativity. I won't say it's impossible to break the curse. And I don't even know if they would want to claim the house as theirs. Bu...

Wednesday, 14th February, 2018

  • 12:01 AM - Kinematics mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Revised Disadvantage/Advantage
    OK, this came out of brainstorming on @DEFCON 1's post about exhaustion, and the trouble with the impact of disadvantage on all ability checks at the first level of exhaustion. However I'm finding the idea more generally attractive, and would like comment on it. The basic idea is to change the interpretation of how disadvantage affects a check. You still roll two dice, but instead of taking the lowest result and being done right there, you take both results, and apply them in order of lowest to highest. If both results were failures, or both success, then nothing really changes. You still just fail or succeed as normal. However when one is a failure, and the other a success, then things get a bit interesting. Namely, you have to take the consequences of the failure before you can get the results of the success. If the consequences of failure prevent the success from being possible at all (eg: attempting to jump over a pit trap; attempting to hit an enemy), then it's just a straight failure. But if the consequences of fail...

Friday, 26th January, 2018

  • 09:29 PM - DM Dave1 mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Short and Long Rest limited Actions
    Action Surge is physically taxing, using it to take basically an extra turn costs you 5 hitpoints as you excessively push yourself. Every time you use it after the first the cost doubles, second time 10 hitpoints, third time 20 hitpoints, etc etc. This increased cost resets AFTER you take a short rest, regain your strength and let your body recover. To allow for "Rule of Cool" situations the cost of an Action Surge is paid at the end of your turn, thus allowing you to chose to make that final effort to finish your foe before accepting the consequences. Then, under the rational of doing away with short or long rest recharging, the fighter would get to use Second Wind in the same way to offset the cost of the additional Action Surges... but what is the cost of re-using Second Wind again and again? I'm sure you could come up with something, but it all seems like too much futzing for not enough gain, IMHO - to paraphrase @DEFCON 1's post above. That said, if an alternative Action Surge rule works for your table, give it a whirl. Let us know how it goes!

Friday, 15th December, 2017

  • 03:38 PM - Blue mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Legendary Actions
    DEFCON 1 is entirely correct in the rules as written. And that legendary actions are to help with the action economy of multiple PCs vs. a solo opponent and with a single PC only doing one is appropriate for the combat. However I believe that the intent is that all are used every round and that is built into the Challenge rating / XP value. If the creature will not have a chance to do so, I would lower the challenge and XP.

Thursday, 21st September, 2017

  • 10:00 PM - lowkey13 mentioned DEFCON 1 in post D&D Reader App Coming This Fall? [UPDATED]
    I felt harassed. It's not up to a vote. He's been blocked. Sent from my iPhone using EN World mobile app Fair enough! Well, let's see. Given that I know the posting history of DEFCON 1 (which is long and fair), and given I've seen what you've just done- "I'm not a moderator. My general rule, for myself, is to engage with people I enjoy engaging with, ignore commenters I don't enjoy, and block those commenters that persistently aggravate me." Bye!

Saturday, 16th September, 2017

  • 04:48 PM - Sacrosanct mentioned DEFCON 1 in post [SPOILERS] Enhancing Tomb of Annihilation
    I'm not treating you like freak. You can stop with that nonsense right now. I'm pointing out how every time something like this comes up, you make some sweeping negative statement that is only true if a lot of assumptions are met. In this case, the only way it becomes as easy as you say is if the party is pretty much nothing but clerics and paladins who spend all of their spell slots on those types of spells. and that is most certainly not true of most gaming groups. So when you make a statement like "...you definitely can't use the base game without tweaks.", that is simply not a universal true statement. You do this stuff all the time, trying to say your arguments are somehow a universal truth. This is exactly what I was talking about in that other thread yesterday DEFCON 1. This isn't you just stating your opinion of your personal style. This is you telling everyone else what can or can't be done as if there is no debate, and it's simply not true. Not to mention, if said players do spend their slots on spells like that, it means less slots they have during other combat encounters and other non combat encounters. To be frank, this reminds me of the discussions about how wizards in 3e make every other class obsolete. Those arguments rely on an assumption that the wizard will have every spell available and every slot available all the time, and that simply isn't true how the game is actually played. And finally, I wish you's stop making claims about something you don't even have the book on yet, and telling us who do have the book and have played it that we're wrong. Chult is tier 1. Says so right in the book. Tier 2 is dwellers of the forbidden city.

Saturday, 12th August, 2017

  • 04:38 PM - CapnZapp mentioned DEFCON 1 in post 5e druids/wildshape/combat forms/improvements
    DEFCON 1: actually my ideal for beast selection is the same as for spell selection: that work is done to shore up the weaker choices to make them palatable (or "viable"). If everybody chooses the Brown Bear, or everybody chooses Fireball, that makes for a less varied game. Just as I'm advocating that spells like Witch Bolt gets an official upgrade, I can wish for magic items that might work on the lion but not the wolf, the tiger but not the elk. Examples taken specifically because there are guides out there saying things like: Lion: Pounce is easily outdone by the Dire Wolf's bite, and the Dire Wolf does more damage. The Lion has two attacks, but without Multiattack that doesn't do anything. Dire Wolf is strictly better. Tiger: Nearly identical to the Lion, but with Darkvision and a tiny bit more damage. Dire Wolf is still better. Giant Elk: The Elk's Charge ability is nice, and has a solid DC to resist, but its biggest appeal is the ridiculous damage on its hooves. 4d8+4...

Thursday, 15th June, 2017

  • 04:56 AM - jayoungr mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Why is Hoard of the Dragon Queen such a bad adventure?
    Hi, I stumbled across this old thread from a google search. I am a first time DM, and this module will be my first campaign. I am interested in reading your blog posts mentioned here, and was also wondering if you had any tips for this adventure specifically for first time DM's. The links to these blog posts are no good. Do they still exist? The original article was reposted on this board, here: http://www.enworld.org/forum/showthread.php?373438-7-Legitimate-Beefs-with-Hoard-of-the-Dragon-Queen&p=6422605&viewfull=1#post6422605 And this post later in the thread has links to the follow-up "13 Tips" article on the Wayback Machine: http://www.enworld.org/forum/showthread.php?373438-7-Legitimate-Beefs-with-Hoard-of-the-Dragon-Queen/page4&p=6730156&viewfull=1#post6730156 Good luck! The "Enhancing" thread mentioned by @DEFCON 1 above is always open for questions.

Wednesday, 10th May, 2017

  • 05:02 AM - pukunui mentioned DEFCON 1 in post Curse of Strahd help
    DEFCON 1: I don't know that I want to cheat quite like that. They're going to go to the castle as soon as they get the sword, so I'm not in a rush to force them there. I've been meaning to have Arrigal attempt to steal the holy symbol off the party (they got it from the Vistani treasure wagon, and I figured Arrigal would've gone off to Strahd to report the PCs' activities, only to be told off by Strahd, who recognized his description of the prize they took from the wagon, and ordered to retrieve it). This is probably the first chance he'll really get, as this is the first time the PCs have spent the night out in the open.


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Thursday, 20th June, 2019

  • 03:55 PM - Laurefindel quoted DEFCON 1 in post On GWF and a versatile fighting style
    The problem with any "versatile" style is that there are too many members of the party around you fighting to make "switching forms" unnecessary. Once you get into combat, attack bonuses, damage rolls, and AC all just meld together into whatever melange the entire party has... and no monster you fight is so distinct in what they can do that a player can accurately determine at the drop of a hat "Oh, yeah, for this creature I definitely need the extra AC point, rather than the bonus damage point!" I'm not sure if this was meant as an answer to my OP or to another poster, but I was suggesting +1 to AC or to hit, and weapon must be held two-handed. Otherwise I agree with you that choices, if any, must be equivalent and relevant. I'm not convinced about the irrelevance of having a choice, but I hear you about +1AC/to hit not being significant enough to be worth the question. By curiosity, what's you opinion on the alternate versatile style? Instead, the players are going to do what they always ...
  • 02:25 PM - Dausuul quoted DEFCON 1 in post Why the Druid Metal Restriction is Poorly Implemented
    Why are you people venting about the metal armor for druids rule when there is a new and perfectly good "they're going to revamp the ranger again!" thread to vent in? At least that thread has the possibility of your opinions having an effect. ;) I am a forum multitasker. I can complain about druids and rangers at the same time.
  • 09:14 AM - Paul Farquhar quoted DEFCON 1 in post Acquisitions, Inc.: First Impressions
    We've been telling people who have kept insisting there needed to be a Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting book to go back to the 3E or Grey Box era for years now. ;) I just pick and choose the bits I like best from the various eras, novels and computer games. They are riddled with contradictions anyway.

Monday, 17th June, 2019

  • 03:27 AM - Travis Henry quoted DEFCON 1 in post Narrative/Novel D&D...ND&D. Imagine if the game played just like the D&D novels?
    ...oken window and crashing into the roof of the car below... and after describing all that we make like a single roll for whether we got hurt from the fall onto the car. The assumption of course being there's no concern about whether or not you "hit" one of the bad guys with an attack and did "damage"... it's an action movie-- of course we hit and knocked the dude out of the fight with one blow. That's the entire point. But this was explicitly an RPG whose "game" part was different than D&D's "game" part. It was all narrative and making up cool stuff to do and get hurt by, rather than rolling piles of dice to knock counting numbers down to zero. I have no idea if the newer editions have changed anything in that game (or indeed if we were playing our version actually per the rules (rather than the GM just running the game the way he wanted in order to exemplify the action movie aspect), but Feng Shui was the closest game I've ever played for that type of narrative result. Thank you DEFCON 1! This is close to what I'm picturing. As far as quickness and intent. One difference though is that ND&D would offer a sample array of descriptors for each action, taken from D&D Fiction itself, to help spur the imagination of the player when they narrate their character's turn.
  • 01:03 AM - Hussar quoted DEFCON 1 in post Chaotic Good Is The Most Popular Alignment!
    It's all a big waste of time... both the alignment system *and* all the discussion about the alignment system. Just play your character and then worry about how you might've defined him with one of 9 boxes after the fact. Honestly, that's how I view it. Lanefan's "breaking in period" makes sense to me. I think this all boils down to a fundamental disagreement over what the word Chaotic means in terms of alignment. You seem to be of the opinion that being Chaotic is like being a kleptomaniac - both require the character to follow their impulses with little regard for the consequences. Myself and others are of the opinion that Chaotic is NOT like being a kleptomaniac - one is basic motivation that can easily be overridden by other factors such as maintaining friendships, fear of punishment, etc., while one is basically a mental disorder. Neither opinion is factually wrong - this is a game of make-believe, after all - but can you see how our interpretation might make the Chaoti...

Sunday, 16th June, 2019

  • 05:53 PM - CapnZapp quoted DEFCON 1 in post Ridding Elves and Half-Elves of Darkvision
    Vision is like spell components... If you think it's an important part of the game, anything the devs put in the book was not going to be as noodly or as in-depth as you were going to want the rules to be. And you were going to house rule your own system into place anyway. Which is why they didn't bother making any big rule system that was just going to be ignored by most people as a result. Thus we can see they learned at least one important lesson from 3E. ;) No, that makes it sound like low-light vision is only a specialist need, and too complicated to include in the base game. In reality, they removed lots of things in their panic to avoid 5E ending up like 4E. Removing low-light vision was one of the less good things: sounds like a trivial change, but with irritatingly large ramifications on how you adventure. The minor savings in rules overhead are not worth having to deal with that many more all-Darkvision parties.

Saturday, 15th June, 2019

  • 02:48 PM - doctorbadwolf quoted DEFCON 1 in post Durable Feat is weak, Healer feat is too strong
    Maybe overall, but at my tables I've yet to have any "obvious" choices. And as I hate to have two selections when a single one would do (which is why for example I got rid of the Acrobats skill and just use DEX (Athletics) instead)... having two different movement based feats was unnecessary to me. So after my edits to the feat list, this particular feat now looks like: FREERUNNER - Your speed increases by 10 feet. - You may use a Bonus action on your turn to take the Dash action. - Difficult terrain doesn't cost you extra movement. - When you are prone, standing up uses only 5 feet of your movement. - Climbing doesn't halve your speed. - You can make a running long or high jump after moving only 5 feet rather than 10. - When falling, you may reduce the distance fallen by 20' for the purposes of calculating damage. So the feat does not completely combine the two other ones as-is, there are a few edits to it. But it gives a very nice package to a PC who wishes to be a m...
  • 06:06 AM - doctorbadwolf quoted DEFCON 1 in post Durable Feat is weak, Healer feat is too strong
    Would you let someone get regenerate or mass heal from a feat? My point was the healer feat is, in effect, giving a spell slot, refreshing on a short or long rest, for every person in your party for the low low cost of a healer's kit. My point was the amount of healing it gets is really high. I've seen it taken twice. I've also seen Inspiring Leader taken once. And I haven't gotten to be in too many 5E games. When I do get a chance to play and not DM, the character I'm planning on making is a Bard built like a Warlord and both of those feats are on my docket to take. Healer gives an amount of power that rests between Magic Initiate and the racial magic feats. Depending on what use of Magic Initiate you compare it to, it may actually fall behind Magic Initiate. (not very many cases, but still) Requiring a specific consumable item to use it is of variable significance, but it hardly breaks the game. Few DMs will just allow infinite healer kits even without the feat, but if they do, so what? ...

Friday, 14th June, 2019

  • 03:31 PM - bedir than quoted DEFCON 1 in post Durable Feat is weak, Healer feat is too strong
    Same. I use feats as character-defining traits, and thus have no desire to spread out that definition over several feats. If there's going to be a "exceedingly healthy and hearty" feat, I only need/want the one. So I removed the CON bonus from Durable then combined the two feats into a single one. What else have you combined in this way?

Wednesday, 12th June, 2019

  • 03:11 PM - Yaarel quoted DEFCON 1 in post 4e Clone − help create it!
    You could get it down to three if you really wanted IMHO. To reduce to three abilities, would mean using Dexterity checks for library research, or alternatively using Intelligence for jumping and grappling. Besides, the 4e stat ‘Passive Perception’ is defacto a routine defense. 4e really has four defenses. If you are trying to "clone" 4E and not just create an entirely new game for yourself, it needs to be able to work with existing 4E material that people already have. The consolidation of abilities down to four is fully compatible with existing 4e material. For example, simply deleting Constitution and Wisdom works well for most (all?) monster stat blocks. Strength and Constitution tend to be near identical. And the elimination of Wisdom leaves its incongruent aspects of Intelligence and Charisma in place. The difference is, there is a one-to-one identity between the four abilities and the four defenses. The imbalance among the six ability scores is a perennial complaint. It can ...
  • 02:56 PM - Zardnaar quoted DEFCON 1 in post 4e Clone − help create it!
    All right... if you're going to make an alternate 5E then just say that. Or if you want to make a personalized 4E variant then just say that. But if that's the case, then you have no need to worry about the D&D SRDs or the OGL. Do whatever you want with no expectation of publishing or publicizing it and keep it for yourself (which it looks like you, @Zardnaar have already been doing, which is great.) But my presumption is that if you are coming onto EN World to work with other posters to combine to create a "4E clone" together (and not just your own personal hack)... then you actually have a desire to make it a more universal and faithful port that is OGL compliant and thus able to be "published" like so many OSR games are. And if that's the case, you cannot start the process by introducing all your own rule hacks to get rid of personal bugaboos. Because your personal bugaboos are not going to be other people's, and thus this game you are trying to make will already write off 98% of the...
  • 02:31 PM - Zardnaar quoted DEFCON 1 in post 4e Clone − help create it!
    If you are trying to "clone" 4E and not just create an entirely new game for yourself, it needs to be able to work with existing 4E material that people already have. Thus you can't reduce abilities down to 4 or raise them up to 8. Because if you do, every single adventure or additional product that a person owns that they would want to use with their "4E rules with the serial numbers shaved off", would require a ton of extra work. And that goes against the whole reason to "clone" a game in the first place. Paizo made sure that their clone of 3.5 would work with people's existing 3.5 material. WotC's "Essentials" clone (which pretty much it is) worked with people's existing 4E material. If any clone is to be made here for universal-ish use (and not just a personal homebrew hack)... then you cannot make people's 4E material useless. Maybe a 4.5 or alternative 5E. Theres no real point actually loning 4E when the PDFs are available and books are cheap and readily available, the rare books ...

Monday, 10th June, 2019

  • 10:23 PM - Ashrym quoted DEFCON 1 in post Wizards (et al.) Casting Known Spells?
    At the OP If you don't like spell prep simply playing in campaigns that ban spell prep classes is also a solution. I've played many and they run fine. No class is needed. In my two current Eberron campaigns I've turned every long-rest spellcasting class into a 'Known Spells' caster, and they all run with the same spell slot table, Spells Known, and Cantrips Known (except for isolated changes here and there-- Sorcerer gains an extra Cantrip over the others for example). And the three primary casters who normally are Prepared but now aren't (cleric, druid, wizard)... the Cleric and Land Druids get to add their domain/land spells to their Spells Known, and Wizards still have a ritual book that they use to collect any Rituals they come across in scrolls or other spellbooks (although any rituals in their book that aren't also a Known Spell for them can only be cast as a 10-minute ritual.) This is pretty much what I was thinking when I was looking at the OP. Wizards swapping spells is la...
  • 06:30 PM - Satyrn quoted DEFCON 1 in post [4E] Which classes would you prefer to see in a clone
    Clone just the Fighter. Most likely, the person making the clone is going to barely get that far before they realize just how much work it is and then come to the conclusion its easier to just play the regular game without bothering to clone it. But if by some chance they actually get the Fighter fully cloned, then they can move onto the Rogue, then the Cleric, then the Wizard and so on. There's absolutely no reason to start worrying about what are classes 5 through 12 when you haven't even gotten classes 1 to 4 taken care of. Heh. Iwas a homebrewing fiend in 3e, making several new base classes and a whole host of prestige classes, along with new feats. Then 4e came along, and I boggled at how much more work it would take to make a new class. I just stopped homebrewing cold. "Yeah, I'm just gonna run the game with the regular options." And it was glorious. Even now, in 5e, my homebrewing is restricted to making monsters, with the lightest touches on the PC side (which boils down to new g...
  • 03:02 PM - dnd4vr quoted DEFCON 1 in post Wizards (et al.) Casting Known Spells?
    In my two current Eberron campaigns I've turned every long-rest spellcasting class into a 'Known Spells' caster, and they all run with the same spell slot table, Spells Known, and Cantrips Known (except for isolated changes here and there-- Sorcerer gains an extra Cantrip over the others for example). And the three primary casters who normally are Prepared but now aren't (cleric, druid, wizard)... the Cleric and Land Druids get to add their domain/land spells to their Spells Known, and Wizards still have a ritual book that they use to collect any Rituals they come across in scrolls or other spellbooks (although any rituals in their book that aren't also a Known Spell for them can only be cast as a 10-minute ritual.) Thus far there have not been any issues. And for those that are wondering about the wizard versus sorcerer thing-- in my Eberron campaigns sorcerers are only dragonmarked characters who focus on their dragonmark magic, and thus they have specialized spell lists they have to use p...

Saturday, 8th June, 2019

  • 11:38 PM - GreyLord quoted DEFCON 1 in post [4E] Which classes would you prefer to see in a clone
    Clone just the Fighter. Most likely, the person making the clone is going to barely get that far before they realize just how much work it is and then come to the conclusion its easier to just play the regular game without bothering to clone it. But if by some chance they actually get the Fighter fully cloned, then they can move onto the Rogue, then the Cleric, then the Wizard and so on. There's absolutely no reason to start worrying about what are classes 5 through 12 when you haven't even gotten classes 1 to 4 taken care of. I actually started the poll after working on the Cleric and realizing how much work it was just for that one class (especially with essentials tossed in). For the next week I'm going to finish the Cleric (almost there), and then skip ahead to combat rules, skills and feats and then come back to the classes most likely. Next I'll work on integrating the essentials Fighter, Rogue, and Wizard with the core ones into one class with options from both. That s...
  • 03:08 PM - Fanaelialae quoted DEFCON 1 in post Valuing a Companion character (Animal Companion, Familiar, Cohort)
    When you are a DM, the more you treat a pet like an actual player character in the party the less concern there is about "game balance". They are no longer just mechanics to deal with, they are characters with personalities and relationships to the others in the group. Thus the players and their PCs react and treat the pet as they would another party member and concerns about dealing too much damage or being a drain on healing fall away. The downside of this approach is that if the pet is equivalent to a PC, the player is essentially running two characters at once. Depending on the player's experience, it may cause delays at the table. Additionally, some players might feel it is imbalanced to allow a player to run two characters (of course, this assumes that not everyone gets a pet). Just some issues I've seen at my table over the years. It varies though. My current players can handle as many as four characters at the same time without significant slow downs, and don't seem to mind if ...
  • 12:45 AM - Aaron L quoted DEFCON 1 in post Jonathan Tweet: Prologue to Third Edition
    Who the heck would want to eat tacos while reading a book of that size? You're just asking to stain the pages when all the tacos stuff falls out onto it while you're eating! ;) And yet even then the book would remain intact. Those things were built like friggin' tanks. (In a bizarre coincidence, I am right now eating tacos as I read through my 1E DMG.)

Thursday, 6th June, 2019

  • 10:15 PM - lowkey13 quoted DEFCON 1 in post Let's Talk About THAC0
    See, the reputation I've always heard bandied about regarding THAC0 wasn't that it was "really complex"... but rather once 3E introduced ascending ACs its reputation was "My god, THAC0 was just STUPID. Why the hell did they ever do it that way in the first place?" :) Y KANT R KIDZ DO MATHZ? Fact: In 2014, 5e was released with its ... new math. Also Fact: in 2015, for the first time in 25 years, math scores for 8th and 12th graders went down in the United States. UNDENIABLE CONCLUSION: Bring back THAC0.
  • 10:07 PM - Mistwell quoted DEFCON 1 in post Jonathan Tweet: Prologue to Third Edition
    Who the heck would want to eat tacos while reading a book of that size? You're just asking to stain the pages when all the tacos stuff falls out onto it while you're eating! ;) Pretty clearly there are several of us. Just wanted to point out your post, Ken, came right after Defcons. So it looked to me like you're raising your hand saying, "Heck yes many of us want to eat tacos while reading the DMG!"


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