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D&D 3E/3.5 

Do you have anything to eliminate the death spiral? One of the big issues we found with 3E is that if you died and got raised you lost a level. This meant that if you continued to adventure with the same group you were much more likely to die again, putting you 2 levels behind. Repeat until the player quits entirely.
 

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TerraDave

5ever
Ah, the heartbreak of the fantasy heartbreaker.

And there is something about 3E/d20 that makes you want to tinker.

I also get the d20/olderD&D mashup. But I think we have those. Though I guess we could have one more.

Still, given the OPs preferences, its seems like either 2e or 5e would be an easier basis for this kind of home-brewing.
 

Malfi

Explorer
Even with the core books only, the back half of fighter is a terribly lackluster set of levels.

That class was hit hardest by the “you should be taking a prestige class” design aesthetic.

In the normal game yes, since feats are badly designed and it also has the typical problems of 3rd edition martials.
In this case it could end up being too strong in certain aspects, level 20 with +21 strength from class features +14 strength from feats and all saves good can be too much if you play the game as intended.

Edit: For some reason I though I posted this yesterday, but it never got through.
 

haakon1

Adventurer
Even with the core books only, the back half of fighter is a terribly lackluster set of levels.
IMHO, the highest levels in D&D are a lot less fun than the lower to mid levels. That’s especially true for 3.5e (whichI DM), where level 13 or so is around the playable max, I find.
 

ph0rk

Friendship is Magic, and Magic is Heresy.
IMHO, the highest levels in D&D are a lot less fun than the lower to mid levels. That’s especially true for 3.5e (whichI DM), where level 13 or so is around the playable max, I find.
I'd agree with that, but at least back when it was the current new hotness so many people wanted to go to 20 and beyond.
 



Blue Orange

Explorer
Nothing wrong with doing something like this just for kicks. I had wasted a bit of time trying to make 1e versions of the dragonborn, tiefling, and sorcerer. Then I thought "hey, how about prestige classes?" and had just finished the assassin when I had to stop due to laughing too hard.
 





Orius

Adventurer
Only Bad DMs exclude Bo9S. Good DMs recognize that even a well built warblade is at best Tier 3, and still well below the capabilities of any full caster. Bo9S simply makes martial classes fun like casters are fun.
Then I must be a really rotten DM for refusing a book that fails to fix classes that have problems by adding even more base classes to the game to make the original classes suck even more.
 

Zardnaar

Legend
Only Bad DMs exclude Bo9S. Good DMs recognize that even a well built warblade is at best Tier 3, and still well below the capabilities of any full caster. Bo9S simply makes martial classes fun like casters are fun.

It adds more complications.

Towards the end of my 3.X I just started saying no to the most prominent abuses.

No divine netamagic or natural spell feats. No nightsticks, radiant servant of pelor or persistent spell.

Druid fix was use the UA variant.

More complicated was redoing the saving throws and I banned the item creation feats and used the 2E spells and magic book for item creation instead.

Mostly 3.X became problematic at higher level which I suspect most people didn't play at anyway.

Things like Druids were rare picks in actual game tables at the time at least in my experience.
 

haakon1

Adventurer
It adds more complications.

Towards the end of my 3.X I just started saying no
Nod, totally agree with “just say no”.

IMHO, editions get gunked up by extra rules. 2e did it first, with what we called splatbooks. More “player options” = more complexity, a world whose physics keeps changing, and a game that begins to look more like the Internal Revenue Code.

Back in 2e times (1990’s), I decided to DM Core Rules AD&D 1e only, with “extra rules” in only with DM approval.

Since 2003, I’ve run D&D 3e with Core Rules only, extra rules on approval.

Only about 1/3 of my players have ever wanted anything more complicated, and only two (of 30+) asked for something I turned down, in both cases because they were vague. People who referred me to a specific published rule somewhere got what they wanted, or we worked together to use a different rule or build it for our group. (Our homebrew version of non-casting Ranger works for us.)

Mostly 3.X became problematic at higher level which I suspect most people didn't play at anyway.
Agree. IMHO, around 13th level for 3e is where the rules complexity and superpowers crowd out more human stories.

AD&D seemed to turn into “get initiative or die” at levels like that. Deadly fights are what I remembe, but that was last millennium!

I never played 4e, PF1, or 5e that high, but I suspect for folks who don’t want to use TurboTax to stack all their actions for each round and play Olympians, those are similarly unsatisfactory at high levels.

Things like Druids were rare picks in actual game tables at the time at least in my experience.
For me, in 18 years of 3.5e, Druid has been one of the rarer PC picks, but about 2x more popular than the least popular, which was Barbarian.

Prestige Classes and NPC’s classes (one PC took first level as Expert for Skills, then Fighter) are also rare in my games. I only remember one Arcane Archer and a Warmaster.
 

Orius

Adventurer
Agree. IMHO, around 13th level for 3e is where the rules complexity and superpowers crowd out more human stories.

AD&D seemed to turn into “get initiative or die” at levels like that. Deadly fights are what I remembe, but that was last millennium!
Honestly, that's not really a 3e only problem. It seems to be an issue with D&D in general. I've noticed over the last year or so of looking at certain elements of D&D I'm interested in exploring across multiple editions is that the whole "game breaks down in the mid teens" seems to be common across just about all the different forms of the game. I think though it first really got noticed in the 3e days.

Being noticed in 3e I think comes from several factors, internet discussions making people more aware of game issues than in the past, a rule system that made it easier to advance to higher levels and which didn't encourage character retirement around name level being the biggest factors. 3e's higher power levels probably didn't help either.
 

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