Unearthed Arcana An Unearthed Arcana I would like to see - mechanical fixes

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
It may be a skill, but it's simply not possible for them to know my game better than I do, so I'm the one who should be creating the house rules for it, not them. My skill at my game exceeds their skill at general game creation.

I don't like the one reaction a round, but I'm giving it more time before I change it. I MAY(I'm mulling it over) decide to give 2 reactions, no two of which can be the same kind of reaction, so not two opportunity attacks or no two spell reactions. I don't need a designer to come up with that. Nor do I need their expertise or playtesting to see how it affects my game.

Okay. That isn’t related to what I said, though.

They’re probably better at making broadly applicable rules changes than you are. Many people want a single houserule per “problem” that they can confidently apply to all their 5e games, regardless of what characters are being played.

Others aren’t as confident as you are in their ability to foresee unintended consequences of a rules change, or simply don’t want to have to change their houserule down the line. The dev team is better at that than most DMs.

It’s not a question of who knows a specific table better. It’s a question of who is more skilled at making rules that won’t create surprise problems down the line, and will work as intended most of the time, efficiently and without needing extra rules to manage the house rules.
 

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Immoralkickass

Explorer
A UA fixing mechanical issues would be like Wotc admitting they were wrong, and they can't have that! That's why there was the UA Fighter: Brute, instead of them coming out and fix the Champion.

If I were them, I too would never admit I am wrong, and if you disagree with me, you probably didnt read it close enough, or interpret it wrongly. But its ok, 2 years later I will probably release another ruling on twitter, but I am still right.
 

It may be a skill, but it's simply not possible for them to know my game better than I do, so I'm the one who should be creating the house rules for it, not them. My skill at my game exceeds their skill at general game creation.
That's exactly the advice I was going to give.

Even for someone with no history of homebrewing, you are the only one who knows what needs to be fixed in order to achieve your own goals, which makes you the one best suited toward fixing it. If you understand the rules well enough to find fault with them, then you understand them well enough to fix them.
 

5ekyu

Hero
"Quote Originally Posted by clearstream View Post
I value their expertise as designers specialising in D&D-style RPGs, and their access to design resources such as salient data sets, time and playtesting. That's an important part of why I part with money for their game rulebooks"



Sigh....
Re-quoted for the umpteenth time is the best advice to ever to be given by the game designers. It's from page B3, Part 1: Introduction, 2nd column 3rd paragraph, of my copy of the 1981 BASIC rulebook. I assume it's written by Tom Moldvay.
Bolded parts theirs, not mine.

"While the material in this booklet is referred to as rules, that is not really correct. Anything in this booklet (and other D&D booklets) should be thought of as changeable - anything, that is, that the Dungeon Master or referee thinks should be changed. This is not to say that everything in this booklet should be discarded! All of this material has been carefully thought out and playtested. However, if, after playing the rules as written for a while, you or your referee (the Dungeon Master) think something should be changed, first think about how the changes will affect the game, and then go ahead. The purpose of these "rules" is to provide guidelines that enable you to play and have fun, so don't feel absolutely bound by them."

Gygax wrote similar advice in the 1e books.

For those of you wanting WoTC to address your very minor problems, you should take into account that:
1) These things might be working exactly as they intended.... Didn't think of that, did you?
2) These things don't register as being important enough to waste their time tweaking.
3) Despite the vast quantity & quality of material that's come along since I first opened that BASIC book nearly 40 years ago, you're STILL involved in a very "do it yourself hobby". So get busy & modify those rules in whatever way your games need.
4) Stop trying to claim your too busy to change a rule you don't like.
You've already thought about it - in the shower, during your commute, while you're slacking off at work/school, during that block of time you've already set aside to play the game....
You've also wasted time posting about what you dislike & how you wish WoTC would spoon feed you alt rules. In some cases you've even posted exactly WHAT you want them to feed you.
You've already invested the time, so go implement your ideas in the only environment that matters - your game.
5) Stop thinking the designers are better at this than you are.
All i will say is these two things (hah, fat chance)

I have been making up home rules for my table longer than some of them have been alive for thos game and others. For more systems too.

I know more about our table, our players, our campaign than *they* do and whatever rules *they* developed for their *standard party in a typical game* are very much aimed at a different target and a wider audience - so - taking a good set of rpg rules and then house ruling it is as natural a thing to me as cooking from a recipe and adjusting seasoning, ingredients, quantities and cooking times to "taste" to better fit my table and my guests.
 


5ekyu

Hero
Most DMs aren’t a team of game designers who literally do this for a living, all day, every day, with a couple dozen or more playtesters for any idea they want to put out.
Nor are game designers necessarily more knowledgable of the type of events at your table that might be creating some of the concerns than you are.

If you were cooking a recipe and it had an ingredient you did not like or were allergic to, would you cook it and suffer thru until the cookbook guys changed their recipe?

Maybe 95 out of 101 recipes are good for you, but you dont have to cook the other six without change because they were in the book along with the others, right?
 

5ekyu

Hero
THIS.

I actually think a lot of the "problems" people have with the 5e rules are really "things that bug them personally" and not actually problems during play. When 5e came out, I house-ruled a bunch of stuff. But after playing and DMing a semi-open table at a gaming store for a few years, I found that explaining the house rules to new players actually sucked a lot more than just following the RAW and dealing with the "problems." Because it turns out that most of the "problems" just didn't matter in game play; the game worked just fine and people had plenty of fun. So over time, my house-rules list has shrunk to the point where now I have just one house-rule, a variant Inspiration system. (To be fair, many of my house rules were involved downtime activities, which got a substantial revision in Xanathar's -- so maybe there was a real problem there.) That's just my experience, and it's possible that I'm projecting my own flaws onto others, but I think I'm not alone in mistaking perceived "problems" for actual ones.
Yes, house rules to **fix problems* imo should start at *what are the problems they have caused in play?* or in a few rare cases *will it cause* if its grossly out of whack.

These are however different from house rules to help reflect a given setting better than the core rules *generic setting.*
 

5ekyu

Hero
Okay. That isn’t related to what I said, though.

They’re probably better at making broadly applicable rules changes than you are. Many people want a single houserule per “problem” that they can confidently apply to all their 5e games, regardless of what characters are being played.

Others aren’t as confident as you are in their ability to foresee unintended consequences of a rules change, or simply don’t want to have to change their houserule down the line. The dev team is better at that than most DMs.

It’s not a question of who knows a specific table better. It’s a question of who is more skilled at making rules that won’t create surprise problems down the line, and will work as intended most of the time, efficiently and without needing extra rules to manage the house rules.
Sorry but no.

It doesnt matter how broadly applicable a rule is when it comes to my table or really anyones table. I have np problem with *them* building rules for a broad audience, thats grest but what matters to me directly is how it works at my table with our players... Not anywhere else.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
Okay. That isn’t related to what I said, though.

They’re probably better at making broadly applicable rules changes than you are. Many people want a single houserule per “problem” that they can confidently apply to all their 5e games, regardless of what characters are being played.

It is related, because unless they are running for several different groups(a rarity in my experience), they don't need a broadly applicable rule. They need one that works for their group, and the DM, possibly with the aid of the players, is the best one to come up with that rule.

Others aren’t as confident as you are in their ability to foresee unintended consequences of a rules change, or simply don’t want to have to change their houserule down the line. The dev team is better at that than most DMs.

I don't have a lot of sympathy for people who aren't willing to make simple corrections to choices that go wrong. That's a part of being DM. Nobody gets it right as soon as they buy the books, or even the first time they DM after having played. DMs make mistakes and need to be willing to correct those mistakes. Correcting a rule they make up is no different.
 

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen (She/Her/Hers)
Here’s what I don’t get. Ok, so you’re confident in your ability to House rule to fit the needs of your group, and value your ability to do so. That’s great! More power to you.

Why, oh why, do you react so defensively when someone else says they’d like to see some WotC-created rules variants? The existence of such “official house rules” in no way hampers your game, and could improve the games of others who lack your surety in messing with the rules, so why would you want to deprive them of that?
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
Here’s what I don’t get. Ok, so you’re confident in your ability to House rule to fit the needs of your group, and value your ability to do so. That’s great! More power to you.

Why, oh why, do you react so defensively when someone else says they’d like to see some WotC-created rules variants? The existence of such “official house rules” in no way hampers your game, and could improve the games of others who lack your surety in messing with the rules, so why would you want to deprive them of that?

It's not so much a desire to deprive anyone of anything, so much as a desire to see WotC make the rare books they put out contain new content, rather than house rules that people can already make up. If they were putting out even 20% of what they did for 3e and 4e, I wouldn't care at all. However, since they only put out a rules book once in a blue moon, and those books are mostly fluff anyway, rules content is at a premium.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Nor are game designers necessarily more knowledgable of the type of events at your table that might be creating some of the concerns than you are.

If you were cooking a recipe and it had an ingredient you did not like or were allergic to, would you cook it and suffer thru until the cookbook guys changed their recipe?

Maybe 95 out of 101 recipes are good for you, but you dont have to cook the other six without change because they were in the book along with the others, right?

I'm not sure where to start here. What are you even arguing against? What point does your cooking reference even make? Did you read my reply to Max?

Sorry but no.

It doesnt matter how broadly applicable a rule is when it comes to my table or really anyones table. I have np problem with *them* building rules for a broad audience, thats grest but what matters to me directly is how it works at my table with our players... Not anywhere else.

Of course it matters. For people who have multiple groups for which they DM. It's 100% reasonable to not want to track a whole set of houserules for every group/game.

It is related, because unless they are running for several different groups(a rarity in my experience), they don't need a broadly applicable rule. They need one that works for their group, and the DM, possibly with the aid of the players, is the best one to come up with that rule.

I don't have a lot of sympathy for people who aren't willing to make simple corrections to choices that go wrong. That's a part of being DM. Nobody gets it right as soon as they buy the books, or even the first time they DM after having played. DMs make mistakes and need to be willing to correct those mistakes. Correcting a rule they make up is no different.
I don't care who you do or don't have sympathy for. I've little respect for arguments that include "I don't have a lot of sympathy for this strawman version of perfectly normal, reasonable people, that I've concocted".

Most groups I know have multiple games, each of which has a different roster of players, with some overlap. What's more, character makeup and campaign style can vary so widely that the same group can run into problems with a houserule that they didn't think about beyond the specific set of features in a specific game.

You're comfortable changing the rule again when that happens, good for you. There's no reason for groups that aren't to give a damn, and there's nothing unreasonable about someone hoping for options designed, iterated, and playtested by the design team to address common issues people have with how the game runs, or to change some of the assumptions of the game without major problems down the line, etc.

Here’s what I don’t get. Ok, so you’re confident in your ability to House rule to fit the needs of your group, and value your ability to do so. That’s great! More power to you.

Why, oh why, do you react so defensively when someone else says they’d like to see some WotC-created rules variants? The existence of such “official house rules” in no way hampers your game, and could improve the games of others who lack your surety in messing with the rules, so why would you want to deprive them of that?

Also, not everyone is that confident, or wants to work out different houserules for each of their games/groups, or just plain doesn't like using untested houserules, which any homebrewed houserule inherently is until you've been using it for weeks or months. Those groups and DMs aren't wrong, they're just different from some others. I have no problem making houserules on my own. I'm very confident in my understanding of the system, my relative lack of any CharOp or anti-CharOp bias in regards to how the game is balanced, and my ability to adjust on the fly if I find a surprise bug.

My best friend who has been running games for over a decade longer than I have will only ever use a houserule if there is a glaring problem, and there is no fix from the makers of the game in sight. Even then, he'd rather make one based on what the designers think about the problem and how to treat it. It's a preference.

Here's the thing. He is, absolutely, better at DMing than I am. I'm pretty good. He's very, very good. He understands 5e just as well as I do, provides keen insights to help me with my houserules and homebrew, and trusts my judgement on those that stuff we make together is just under official stuff in his hierarchy of allowed material. But he simply likes to play by the book. FOr him, if we aren't using the system as intended, why aren't we just playing GURPS? (no accounting for taste)
It's not so much a desire to deprive anyone of anything, so much as a desire to see WotC make the rare books they put out contain new content, rather than house rules that people can already make up. If they were putting out even 20% of what they did for 3e and 4e, I wouldn't care at all. However, since they only put out a rules book once in a blue moon, and those books are mostly fluff anyway, rules content is at a premium.

The thread is about a hypothetical Unearthed Arcana article. Even if it was about a hypothetical book, we get at least 1 book with new player options each year, and have thousands of options. It's not a big deal if one of those books some year doesn't interest you. It also isn't likely that any one concept put forth for a book would ever be the only thing in a 5e "new options" book, because that isn't how they're running things this time. Instead, it would be part of the DM section of a book with new stuff for DMs and players, targeting multiple niches. It's...objectively not a big deal if one part of one book isn't interesting to you, or me, or whoever.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
I don't care who you do or don't have sympathy for. I've little respect for arguments that include "I don't have a lot of sympathy for this strawman version of perfectly normal, reasonable people, that I've concocted".

A counter argument is not a Strawman. I neither restated your argument an altered form, nor argued against any such restatement. You need to learn what a Strawman is if you are going to sling it around.

The thread is about a hypothetical Unearthed Arcana article. Even if it was about a hypothetical book, we get at least 1 book with new player options each year, and have thousands of options.

I have all of the books and there are not thousands of new options, even if you include all of the monsters, which is what the majority of the crunch released so far consists of.

Instead, it would be part of the DM section of a book with new stuff for DMs and players, targeting multiple niches. It's...objectively not a big deal if one part of one book isn't interesting to you, or me, or whoever.

Yes. This is what I said. They release a book consisting mostly of fluff and just a little bit of crunch inside. Crunch space is at a premium.
 

There are players who make their game around sharp shooter and GWM.
While there are some Dm that nerf those feats.
The core rules are a tool to build a wide variety of play style.
The vision is not a “common balanced game”, but multiple table with multiple expectation.
 

But the case of the shield master feat is also quite interesting.
This fall M Mearls made a tweet about the bonus action timing for this feat.
There is a thread in this forum about it, a passionate debate where some poster simply say that Mearls was wrong and they will not change their actual application of the rules,

What you ask is a pandora box, and the dev team is wise enough to not open it.
 

DEFCON 1

Legend
Supporter
Most DMs aren’t a team of game designers who literally do this for a living, all day, every day, with a couple dozen or more playtesters for any idea they want to put out.
Yeah, but they are also the creators of the rules you all think are bad and need editing.

Apparently they aren't as good as you think they should be if you don't like the rules they've already made for you.

And besides... what happens when these experts decide that okay, they agree that there's a "bug" in a particular rule they need to fix...

...and their fix is one you don't like either? All that waiting around being unhappy only to remain unhappy because the professionals didn't read your mind on what you thought the solution should be.

Best of luck hoping that Mike and Co. guess at your solutions just so you can say "the rules I use were written by professional game designers!"
 

TwoSix

Unserious gamer
To be honest, I'm not interested in an Unearthed Arcana of house rules because it will help my game; I like the idea because "Unearthed Arcana: Bats**t Crazy House Rules" will generate a hundred times more interesting discussion than "Unearthed Arcana: Boaty McBoatface".
 

Yunru

Banned
Banned
To be honest, I'm not interested in an Unearthed Arcana of house rules because it will help my game; I like the idea because "Unearthed Arcana: Bats**t Crazy House Rules" will generate a hundred times more interesting discussion than "Unearthed Arcana: Boaty McBoatface".
That's a lie and you know it. Than any other UA, maybe. Than UA: Boaty McBoatface?!
 

5ekyu

Hero
I'm not sure where to start here. What are you even arguing against? What point does your cooking reference even make? Did you read my reply to Max?



Of course it matters. For people who have multiple groups for which they DM. It's 100% reasonable to not want to track a whole set of houserules for every group/game.


I don't care who you do or don't have sympathy for. I've little respect for arguments that include "I don't have a lot of sympathy for this strawman version of perfectly normal, reasonable people, that I've concocted".

Most groups I know have multiple games, each of which has a different roster of players, with some overlap. What's more, character makeup and campaign style can vary so widely that the same group can run into problems with a houserule that they didn't think about beyond the specific set of features in a specific game.

You're comfortable changing the rule again when that happens, good for you. There's no reason for groups that aren't to give a damn, and there's nothing unreasonable about someone hoping for options designed, iterated, and playtested by the design team to address common issues people have with how the game runs, or to change some of the assumptions of the game without major problems down the line, etc.



Also, not everyone is that confident, or wants to work out different houserules for each of their games/groups, or just plain doesn't like using untested houserules, which any homebrewed houserule inherently is until you've been using it for weeks or months. Those groups and DMs aren't wrong, they're just different from some others. I have no problem making houserules on my own. I'm very confident in my understanding of the system, my relative lack of any CharOp or anti-CharOp bias in regards to how the game is balanced, and my ability to adjust on the fly if I find a surprise bug.

My best friend who has been running games for over a decade longer than I have will only ever use a houserule if there is a glaring problem, and there is no fix from the makers of the game in sight. Even then, he'd rather make one based on what the designers think about the problem and how to treat it. It's a preference.

Here's the thing. He is, absolutely, better at DMing than I am. I'm pretty good. He's very, very good. He understands 5e just as well as I do, provides keen insights to help me with my houserules and homebrew, and trusts my judgement on those that stuff we make together is just under official stuff in his hierarchy of allowed material. But he simply likes to play by the book. FOr him, if we aren't using the system as intended, why aren't we just playing GURPS? (no accounting for taste)


The thread is about a hypothetical Unearthed Arcana article. Even if it was about a hypothetical book, we get at least 1 book with new player options each year, and have thousands of options. It's not a big deal if one of those books some year doesn't interest you. It also isn't likely that any one concept put forth for a book would ever be the only thing in a 5e "new options" book, because that isn't how they're running things this time. Instead, it would be part of the DM section of a book with new stuff for DMs and players, targeting multiple niches. It's...objectively not a big deal if one part of one book isn't interesting to you, or me, or whoever.
"Of course it matters. For people who have multiple groups for which they DM. It's 100% reasonable to not want to track a whole set of houserules for every group/game. "

As a response to how much the broad applicabily of a ruke matters "when it comes to my table" this is a baffling response.

As for GMs with multiple tables,they can choose to play them all with one ruleset if they wish whether that be RAW or house rules -as long as it meets their needs.

As for the difficulty in "tracking a whole set" of rules, uhh... How many house rukes do you imagine there would be? If WotC publishes this article of myth fixes, how many do you think it would be and that would flawlessly fix the problems you imagine were needing houserules *to your standards?

My house rules doc for my homebrew including setting is about 2 pages or one front and back. Its posted online on our group site.

Now, if your reference was about a GM who chooses different house rules for each of his games, thats perhsps a good call if his settings, gsmes, etc need to be different. Obviously he only needs to carry one to each.
 

Satyrn

First Post
Yeah, but they are also the creators of the rules you all think are bad and need editing.

Apparently they aren't as good as you think they should be if you don't like the rules they've already made for you.

And besides... what happens when these experts decide that okay, they agree that there's a "bug" in a particular rule they need to fix...

...and their fix is one you don't like either? All that waiting around being unhappy only to remain unhappy because the professionals didn't read your mind on what you thought the solution should be.

Best of luck hoping that Mike and Co. guess at your solutions just so you can say "the rules I use were written by professional game designers!"
Except for the last line, you've said exactly what I'd have.

(I'd have closed out with a lame joke making fun of myself)
 

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