5E Why the Druid Metal Restriction is Poorly Implemented - Page 19
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  1. #181
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aebir-Toril View Post
    I stand by my assertion that Druids should not be frontlines.
    Firstly, why not?

    Secondly, Circle of the Moon (and circle of spores) begs to differ.

    Thirdly, it take more than an of AC 19 to make a character a front liner.

    I would fix this by granting an AC bonus while the Halo of Spores is active.


    I would fix it by putting an Ankheg breastplate in the character's path early on. Because if you can fix something with changing the rules it make the whole game-world more robust.
    Last edited by Paul Farquhar; Saturday, 22nd June, 2019 at 07:25 AM.

  2. #182
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    Quote Originally Posted by paintphob View Post
    I admit I was incorrect, the Drow Ranger was legal, but the dual wielding scimitar was not. In 1e, you could only dual wield with a dagger or an ax in the off-hand. The ranger as a dual wielder did not come along until 2e, in '89.
    The wording in the sub-section on Drow in the Elf descriptions on p.10 of UA, is likely the source of RAS giving Dzzt the questionable ability to duel wield scimitars.
    ~~~"but may fight with two weapons without penalty, providing each weapon may be easily wielded in one hand." Rest of the paragraph goes on to talk about being able to use bucklers, but not shields as one of those weapons.
    Added to this was the reference in the FF that Drow could use either hand/arm equally well for attack or defense.
    The debate was generally about what counted as being easily wielded in one hand. And since Drow apparently didn't have an off hand....
    So depending upon the group, this may or may not have over-ridden the requirement from DMG p.70 of that 2nd weapon being limited to either a dagger or hand axe (+ obviously now bucklers - if you were a Drow).
    I know that every single group I played with or met in those years had this discussion. In my main group it boiled down to "Well this is how it's going to work when I'mtheDM." So in our games it worked one way 1/3 of the time, the other way 1/3 of the time, & was a moot point in the other 1/3 as I didn't allow Drow PCs & monsters didn't necessarily follow PCs rules.
    And then the Crystal Shard came out & one side got to go "HAH! I TOLD you so!". And you still couldn't make a Drow PC if I were DMing.
    So I've never thought RAS was in error, just making a DM call as the author.

  3. #183
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    The drow originally as presented as monsters in Against the Giants all dual wielded - swords, hand crossbows, tenticle rods.

  4. #184
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    The Druid argument is one example of current gaming attitudes that frustrates me somewhat, namely the unwillingness of players to abide by certain core themes of classes and races in their roleplaying.

    When I DM I'm of the opinion that if you play a Druid, your character will NOT wear metal armour. This is not a player choice, this is just a simple rule that a player must abide by. If the player is unwilling to do so, then they will not be playing a Druid. It's really that simple. If a Druid player tries to get their character to don metal armour I will simply veto the action and say 'No'.

    However I'm somewhat old school in my approach to other classes and races, I use the racial preference table from 1E for example - sorry, if you want to play a Half Orc then the Elf in the party is NOT going to be a lifelong best friend. In fact your characters are not going to get along, at least not initially, so please work together and decide which of you is going to play a different race that is more suitable, or be prepared to roleplay significant conflict between them.

  5. #185
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonnyP71 View Post
    The Druid argument is one example of current gaming attitudes that frustrates me somewhat, namely the unwillingness of players to abide by certain core themes of classes and races in their roleplaying.

    When I DM I'm of the opinion that if you play a Druid, your character will NOT wear metal armour. This is not a player choice, this is just a simple rule that a player must abide by. If the player is unwilling to do so, then they will not be playing a Druid. It's really that simple. If a Druid player tries to get their character to don metal armour I will simply veto the action and say 'No'.

    However I'm somewhat old school in my approach to other classes and races, I use the racial preference table from 1E for example - sorry, if you want to play a Half Orc then the Elf in the party is NOT going to be a lifelong best friend. In fact your characters are not going to get along, at least not initially, so please work together and decide which of you is going to play a different race that is more suitable, or be prepared to roleplay significant conflict between them.
    The issue I personally have with this kind of thinking is that player characters are typically exceptions, and not cookie-cutter paragons of their class/race. Most humans don't act like Marvel's Captain America, but that's what makes him stand out. The players are usually the heroes that transcend the typical mold, risking their lives in combat for the greater good. The hero that looks past the dated or immoral ideas of their own people is a super common trope in any lore, hence why it's such a common concept in all forms of media. Assuming all Elves and Half Orcs hate each other is like saying it was impossible for a white to befriend a black during the days of the Atlantic slave trades. We know historically that is not the case, and we'd know that even without historical evidence because if it were impossible then interactions between groups could never change, due to nobody ever being able to step outside the preset mold.
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  6. #186
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonnyP71 View Post
    The Druid argument is one example of current gaming attitudes that frustrates me somewhat, namely the unwillingness of players to abide by certain core themes of classes and races in their roleplaying.

    When I DM I'm of the opinion that if you play a Druid, your character will NOT wear metal armour. This is not a player choice, this is just a simple rule that a player must abide by. If the player is unwilling to do so, then they will not be playing a Druid. It's really that simple. If a Druid player tries to get their character to don metal armour I will simply veto the action and say 'No'.

    However I'm somewhat old school in my approach to other classes and races, I use the racial preference table from 1E for example - sorry, if you want to play a Half Orc then the Elf in the party is NOT going to be a lifelong best friend. In fact your characters are not going to get along, at least not initially, so please work together and decide which of you is going to play a different race that is more suitable, or be prepared to roleplay significant conflict between them.
    Keep in mind that while I am debating for druids being able to wear metal armor, that is purely based on my reading of the rules. It isn't something that I or any of my players have ever done, nor do I foresee happening.

    It's simply an option that is there. Such a druid would be a heretic, and I suspect that any player who did so in my game just for a few points extra AC would have a powerful regret sooner than not. Especially since I don't make it back breakingly difficult to obtain armor made from non-traditional materials (like bulette half plate). IMC, if you want to be a metal armor wearing druid I'll allow it, but if your goal wasn't to have an extra large helping of hardship to role play against, you made the wrong choice, and I would make that clear to any player who proposed such a character to me.

    However, if the player wants to be a druidic heretic and lean into all the troubles that will come of it, that sounds like it could be a potentially interesting concept so I'm not going to shut it down.

    As to the elf and half-orc thing, I'm with Ohmyn on this one. If your world is old school, the two of them being pals might well attract a lot of negative attention from bigots, but my players would be free to do so. Maybe they grew up together in a slum and saved each other's lives more times than anyone can count. Maybe the elf tragically lost his child and while in the depths of grief and despair found an abandoned half orc baby and raised the child as his own. Sure, the rest of the world might look down on such a relationship, but it doesn't mean it couldn't happen. IMO, anyway.

    Personally, I don't like to bring an excessive amount of ugliness from the real world into my game worlds. While such things do exist there, they don't tend to be pronounced, because I'd rather spend my game time on big damn heroes than on how much the world can suck. On the other hand, as long as you've made it clear to the players that such prejudices exist in your world, if they opt into it by playing such a duo that says to me that they want to explore such a relationship in such a world, which sounds to me like it could make for some incredible role playing moments.
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  7. #187
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonnyP71 View Post
    The Druid argument is one example of current gaming attitudes that frustrates me somewhat, namely the unwillingness of players to abide by certain core themes of classes and races in their roleplaying.
    In 5e, players are actively encouraged to re-fluff classes to suit their character concepts. I alluded to the Samurai subclass earlier. Chances are a player character is never going to be a Japanese noble, so players pretty much have to re-fluff this subclass to fit a different "core theme".

    It may be that the player wants to play a shaman, or a deep gnome rock priest, or a shapeshifter, or some other concept. Druid might be the closest fit the concept, but they do not see their character as a member of a "druidic religion" (if such a religion exists at all in a game-world).

    A gaming attitude that frustrates me somewhat is an unwillingness to let people play the game the way they want to play it.
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  8. #188
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonnyP71 View Post
    The Druid argument is one example of current gaming attitudes that frustrates me somewhat, namely the unwillingness of players to abide by certain core themes of classes and races in their roleplaying.

    When I DM I'm of the opinion that if you play a Druid, your character will NOT wear metal armour. This is not a player choice, this is just a simple rule that a player must abide by. If the player is unwilling to do so, then they will not be playing a Druid. It's really that simple. If a Druid player tries to get their character to don metal armour I will simply veto the action and say 'No'.
    So the problem with this is two fold. First, starting with 1e any druid could put on metal armor. It's why even though 1e through 3e used words like "can't" and "prohibited," they also informed the players and DM that metal armor kept the druid from casting his spells. You could in fact put it on from the get go, even with the restrictions. The second problem is that 5e has removed the penalties and the word "can't," so that now it's just a fluff preference of the class.

    You can of course reinstate the penalties for wearing metal armor that were created by the old school, but if you actually tell the player "No, your PC doesn't put on that armor," not only are you committing one of the cardinal sins of DMing, that of controlling a players PC without in game means, but you are also doing something that was incorrect as far back as 1e. Druids have always been able to wear metal armor.

    1e: The more powerful druidic spells, as well as their wider range of weaponry, make up for the fact that druids are unable to use any armor or shields other than leather armor and wooden shields (metallic armor spoils their magical powers).


    2e: 2e does not have the same language as 1e and 3e. It can be assumed, though, to be like 1e where it was just a restriction due to prevention of spellcasting and abilities. All it says is that metal armor is forbidden, not why.


    3e: A druid who wears prohibited armor or carries a prohibited shield is unable to cast druid spells or use any of her supernatural or spell-like class abilities while doing so and for 24 hours thereafter.

    4e: I have no idea. I didn't really play it much and druids aren't in the PHB.

    5e: Makes wearing metal armor a personal choice by deliberately and repeatedly stepping back from prior language like "can't, "forbidden" and "restricted," using "will not" instead. It also removes all mechanical penalty, further reinforcing that it's just a fluff choice not to wear armor, which any PC can of course change.

    However I'm somewhat old school in my approach to other classes and races, I use the racial preference table from 1E for example - sorry, if you want to play a Half Orc then the Elf in the party is NOT going to be a lifelong best friend. In fact your characters are not going to get along, at least not initially, so please work together and decide which of you is going to play a different race that is more suitable, or be prepared to roleplay significant conflict between them.
    As was noted by @Ohmyn, PCs are exceptions to the general rules. They are free to pick and choose their personalities, including have compassion or understanding for races that had animosity for one another in the books. This is a common trope in fantasy writing, and is backed up by D&D itself. Official products have had good demons and other exceptions to the general behavior rules, because individuals are.......individuals. They can decide for themselves if as an elf, they hate orcs. Maybe this one elf over here wants to heal the divide and thinks orcs can be redeemed. If you as the DM are forbidding players from doing that sort of thing, not only are you stepping over the line with regard to playing their PCs, but you are missing out on tons of great roleplaying opportunities.
    XP Paul Farquhar, Ohmyn, Psyzhran2357 gave XP for this post

  9. #189
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aebir-Toril View Post
    However, I stand by my assertion that Druids should not be frontlines.
    Touching on this, in original AD&D, the Druid was a subclass of Cleric, and just like the Cleric, was a front-line melee combatant, both second only to the Fighter in terms of melee prowess. The Cleric had access to metal armors, but the Druid had access to more weapons, and intentionally more powerful spells to make up for the reduced defense.

    The issue we stand at now is that the Cleric has access to more weapons, different but equal spells (slightly less different if Nature Cleric), and still has their full staying power in combat. The Druid now has less access to weapons, less magic power relative to the Cleric since their magic has been mostly balanced out mechanically, but the metal limitation has been lifted, being changed into a choice as opposed to a mechanical defect in the class.

    We now stand at the point where people gladly accept the changes the Cleric has received throughout the years, but still cling to the penalty of past edition Druids and enforce them today. People accept Sage Advice as canon when it nerfs Druids, such as saying Conjure Animals options are a DM pick, but then discard it as unofficial (even though WotC says otherwise) when it says there is no longer a penalty for wearing metal armor, or when Goodberry can benefit from mechanical buffs to healing spells.

    DMs want to cling to the limiting mechanics of Druids of the past, but when their spellcasting outdoes that of their more physically powerful Cleric counterparts (which was an intentional mechanic of Druids of the past), they decide it's imbalanced and needs a nerf. People complain about Healing Spirit being OP even when its mechanics are not exploited via some ridiculous conga line, all on the basis that it outclasses the Cleric's spell healing, while ignoring the fact that Druids of the past intentionally had stronger spellcasting in exchange for the Druid losing access to their magic if they wore metal armor. It seems it's become acceptable that the Druid only get the worst of every angle, because it's somehow imbalanced for them to exceed their counter options in any way.

    It's no wonder the Druid class is by far the least played class in 5E.
    Last edited by Ohmyn; Saturday, 22nd June, 2019 at 08:22 PM.

  10. #190
    Quote Originally Posted by Ohmyn View Post
    Touching on this, in original AD&D, the Druid was a subclass of Cleric, and just like the Cleric, was a front-line melee combatant, both second only to the Fighter in terms of melee prowess. The Cleric had access to metal armors, but the Druid had access to more weapons, and intentionally more powerful spells to make up for the reduced defense.

    The issue we stand at now is that the Cleric has access to more weapons, different but equal spells (slightly less different if Nature Cleric), and still has their full staying power in combat. The Druid now has less access to weapons, less magic power relative to the Cleric since their magic has been mostly balanced out mechanically, but the metal limitation has been lifted, being changed into a choice as opposed to a mechanical defect in the class.

    We now stand at the point where people gladly accept the changes the Cleric has received throughout the years, but still cling to the penalty of past edition Druids and enforce them today. People accept Sage Advice as canon when it nerfs Druids, such as saying Conjure Animals options are a DM pick, but then discard it as unofficial (even though WotC says otherwise) when it says there is no longer a penalty for wearing metal armor, or when Goodberry can benefit from mechanical buffs to healing spells.

    DMs want to cling to the limiting mechanics of Druids of the past, but when their spellcasting outdoes that of their more physically powerful Cleric counterparts (which was an intentional mechanic of Druids of the past), they decide it's imbalanced and needs a nerf. People complain about Healing Spirit being OP even when its mechanics are not exploited via some ridiculous conga line, all on the basis that it outclasses the Cleric's spell healing, but then ignore the fact that Nature Clerics can gain Druid spells and cantrips, all while they wear full plate. It's no wonder that the Druid is by far the least played class in 5e.
    As a Druid player myself, I must admit that the Druid is pretty weak as it is. In an ideal D&D of my design (ideal for me anyway), Clerics and Druids would not be frontliners. My point was not that Druids should not be able to wear metal armor under flavor rules, but should remain non-frontline, while clerics should be nerfed.

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