D&D 5E Aren't Short Rest classes *better* in "story-based" games rather than dungeon crawls?


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Asisreo

Patron Badass
Because the rest of the party is, in general, incentivized to also short rest if one person is able to take one. You can spend HD, you regain any short-rest features you may have (more relevant for some classes than others, see below). Splitting the party is (almost) always a bad plan, and if one person is genuinely truly safe and comfortable enough to rest reliably, it's not clear why everyone wouldn't be.
The factor is about busy-ness not safety. Not everyone is busy at the same time. Again, these are story-driven days so the immediate danger and consequence for casting haphazardly is either low to none.
Try selling a typical 5e DM on this logic. I'd be impressed if you get even a 25% success rate. "It's not really breaking the rules..." is exactly the kind of argument that fails the smell test for most DMs regardless of edition.
I have and it's been successful. Mostly because my friends know I'm not trying to skirt them on a technicality and I'd allow the exact same treatment at my games.
Many DMs don't actually seem to buy that you can rest while you move. The description given is, "A short rest is a period of downtime, at least 1 hour long, during which a character does nothing more strenuous than eating, drinking, reading, and tending to wounds." Walking or horseback riding doesn't fly for a pretty significant number of 5e DMs out there. Your carriage idea works....but is now actually making the warlock special, getting special attention and/or resources in order to pull the plan off. That's going to ruffle some feathers in at least some groups.
I didn't mean to say the warlock ever walks. The warlock simply waits while others move. Again, these are story days so it's not like the group is traveling from Greece to Ireland. I'm talking about moving in a city and regrouping later.
Further: (BM) Fighters, Barbarians, Clerics, Druids, Bards, and probably more classes besides all actually do want to take a short rest if they have the opportunity. Battle Masters get their dice back, Barbarians (at 11 for all Barbs, with Relentless Rage; earlier for Totem and Beast), Clerics get Channel Divinity back (doubly useful since Tasha's added Harness Divine Power to regain spell slots), Druids get wild shape back (and many subclasses thus get more uses of their key features), Bards get their Bardic Inspiration back at 5th level (and various subclasses get stuff back on SR at other levels). Even the party Wizard, the would-be king of long-rest-based characters, usually wants in on at least one SR a day because of Arcane Recovery. Add in spending Hit Dice and any other benefits, and it's unclear why you'd make space for just one character to take short rests whenever they want.
Which is fine, but most of those are combat-abilities. But it's also true that a Druid may like to wildshape alot or bard's might inspire the rogue multiple times a day. This isn't a bad thing, in my mind. It makes the party feel more narrative power.
But yes, you're correct that it IS just like making sure the Wizard doesn't have enough gold to copy spells. That's the problem. The game, and the DMs, and even the players themselves, are incentivized to not let the Warlock do this, even though it probably would be more effective--because it feels unfair, because it looks suspicious, because most people don't feel it's thematic, and (as noted elsewhere) because you really can't rely on there being only one fight per day and lots and lots of ample "really doing not much of anything" time. (Frankly, even presuming you can buy a carriage for the warlock to rest in is a bridge too far for many DMs!)
But why? Is it actively derailing the campaign? How so? Like, it's a feature specifically put into the game on purpose and sanctioned by the creators. It's RAW and RAI.

If there's no combat days, the DM should understand this opens up in the game. That's not to say it bad, but it's a natural consequence they should be prepared for.
 

If there's no combat days, the DM should understand this opens up in the game. That's not to say it bad, but it's a natural consequence they should be prepared for.
I find that this is an idea that 5e's design is predicated around, but which in practice is unreliable at best.

It's also why transparency is such a valuable characteristic of a ruleset. When the rules are transparent, it's easy to tell what the "natural consequences" are and, for particularly good transparency, how to prepare for them.

5e is not a transparent ruleset--by design.
 

aco175

Legend
As said, earlier I put a limit on the number of short rests because I make it something that can pretty much be done in no time outside of combat.

Has anyone put a limit on short rests and kept them at an hour? (And not done something to make long rests harder either) And if so why? Were you responding to a genuine issue in the game? Were Warlocks actually too powerful?
I do not have a hard limit on short rests, but it tends to be 2-3 on a busy day. There may be travel to a place and a random encounter along the way and then a few more hours to get to the site where I just say you get to Short Rest along the way.

During a dungeon crawl it becomes harder and I, the DM can influence the amount. Last session, the group had 3-4 encounters before finding a secret door that opens to a lower level. It is a logical place to rest, so I just told them that maybe they should rest if they wanted.

What I'm trying to work out is if this putting some limit on the number of short rests is in response to some actual gaming issue (and in this case in what kind of game situations is it arising - as I find it hard to imagine) or is just one of those annoying things DMs do to make things "make sense".

Like taking three short rests back to back. There's precious little that achieves because most things are actually fully restored or limited. The main issue I can think of is that it would give the Fighter some free healing with Second Wind (but the problem here is Second Wind not Short rests).
I'm guessing part of the gaming issue is similar to other gimmicks brought up over time. Things like ruining the economy by creating arrows or flooding a desert with create water to make 10coppers/ hour. Making everburning torches to corner the market on oil.

Using the system to find loopholes makes the game more like Magic cards where you find combos from old editions that work with new cards and creating situations where you can 'win' in 2 turns. May be fun to some, but not a lot of us.
 

iserith

Magic Wordsmith
Is the issue that the Warlock is always resting or that the Warlock always wants to rest?
My observation based on the incentives in play is that the party should always want to be resting unless there's time pressure. My wizard should be happy that his warlock teammate is at full strength even if my wizard is not, right? If the game doesn't have time pressure, rest every chance you get. If the game does have time pressure, then you have to be choosy about it.

If someone is getting miffed that the party is resting too much, this points directly at a lack of time pressure or some other risk or cost in the game. So fix that and all these issues, such as they are, simply go away. Like many issues in the game, this is both caused and solved by the DM. (Now I'll prepare my rebuttal in preparation for the inevitable argument of "Not every adventure can have time pressure!")
 

The game, and the DMs, and even the players themselves, are incentivized to not let the Warlock do this, even though it probably would be more effective--because it feels unfair, because it looks suspicious, because most people don't feel it's thematic, and (as noted elsewhere) because you really can't rely on there being only one fight per day and lots and lots of ample "really doing not much of anything" time. (Frankly, even presuming you can buy a carriage for the warlock to rest in is a bridge too far for many DMs!)
In most of my recent games, the characters are out in the wilderness, so having a carriage is a non-starter. They could rest for an hour, but in many places that is extremely dangerous and increases the risk of a wandering monster.

All I can say, from my experience, even allowing for low-encounter days, it is the wizards that are more likely to skew the challenge of an encounter, not the warlock. In part, it is because the warlock is so limited in spells and invocations, so they are just less likely to have the tool necessary to cakewalk an encounter than take a rest.
 

Asisreo

Patron Badass
In most of my recent games, the characters are out in the wilderness, so having a carriage is a non-starter. They could rest for an hour, but in many places that is extremely dangerous and increases the risk of a wandering monster.

All I can say, from my experience, even allowing for low-encounter days, it is the wizards that are more likely to skew the challenge of an encounter, not the warlock. In part, it is because the warlock is so limited in spells and invocations, so they are just less likely to have the tool necessary to cakewalk an encounter than take a rest.
This post is less about inter-party balance and more about a single class's overall strength depending on the adventure structure.

Whether Wizards are stronger or not is irrelevant to this particular discussion, though it's a topic with merit.

The point is, whether or not you enforce time pressures, rest limits, or narrative aspects, the warlock simply has more opportunities to rest in a day that has less combat.

If the party/DM artificially removes that power, then it's kinda the same as artificially having the rogue do less sneak attack damage. On the surface, it only appears excessive, but there are balancing factors relative to the entirety of the game to balance it.

As others have said, the warlock has limited spells known, limited invocations, limited time, and the spells on their list are far less robust than a wizard's. So I don't see ehy the warlock has to be placed under artificial restraints on their abilities.
 

Is the issue that the Warlock is always resting or that the Warlock always wants to rest?
In practice: if you aren't giving out short rests, warlocks become a lot weaker relative to other classes. This is true if the reason you're not short resting is constant pressure / unavailability of rests, or if it's because you can just take a long rest every time. This same effect is also true for monks, but less noticeable.
 

Asisreo

Patron Badass
In practice: if you aren't giving out short rests, warlocks become a lot weaker relative to other classes. This is true if the reason you're not short resting is constant pressure / unavailability of rests, or if it's because you can just take a long rest every time. This same effect is also true for monks, but less noticeable.
Out of curiosity, and perhaps to be picked, what's an example of an adventure with sufficient Time Pressure as that an idle hour is too narrow of time to rest?
 

Out of curiosity, and perhaps to be picked, what's an example of an adventure with sufficient Time Pressure as that an idle hour is too narrow of time to rest?
You're infiltrating an enemy stronghold and you've just killed some guards.

Given an hour the bodies have likely been discovered and a full blown search is underway.
 

Asisreo

Patron Badass
You're infiltrating an enemy stronghold and you've just killed some guards.

Given an hour the bodies have likely been discovered and a full blown search is underway.
This may lead into a back-and-forth so I apologize in advance.

Two questions: Would burying the bodies not stall for time?

Is this not a full adventuring day setup? It seems like a classic dungeon crawl.
 

This may lead into a back-and-forth so I apologize in advance.

Two questions: Would burying the bodies not stall for time?
Maybe maybe not. It depends on whether the PCs can plausibly go under the radar. If for example, they've thrown around fireballs and the like, then they can't exactly bury the damage that causes.

Of course plausibly this creates immediate attention, but dungeon crawling has always had this issue, and it least allows for the possibility that if the PCs leave the area of the fight immediately, then they can get ahead of the search.

Is this not a full adventuring day setup? It seems like a classic dungeon crawl.
Well yes. That's the issue. It's always felt to me that if the Party has somewhere safe enough and unobtrusive enough to rest up for an hour and eat some food, then they're likely always going to be thinking "hey, this place seems quiet and secure why don't we take a long rest?"
 

Asisreo

Patron Badass
Well yes. That's the issue. It's always felt to me that if the Party has somewhere safe enough and unobtrusive enough to rest up for an hour and eat some food, then they're likely always going to be thinking "hey, this place seems quiet and secure why don't we take a long rest?"
But I'm talking about days that are less reminiscent of dungeon crawls.

I think D&D has the most balance in dungeon crawls anyways due to time, space, and resource limitations following a somewhat predictable pattern. The siege example makes it extremely easy to fit 6-8 combat encounters and 2 short rests merely by pacing the encounters with rooms that "appear safe" or "can be barricaded easily."

But it's often stated that "games outside the full adventuring day guidelines makes Warlocks weaker." I'm trying to figure out how.
 

But I'm talking about days that are less reminiscent of dungeon crawls.

I think D&D has the most balance in dungeon crawls anyways due to time, space, and resource limitations following a somewhat predictable pattern. The siege example makes it extremely easy to fit 6-8 combat encounters and 2 short rests merely by pacing the encounters with rooms that "appear safe" or "can be barricaded easily."

But it's often stated that "games outside the full adventuring day guidelines makes Warlocks weaker." I'm trying to figure out how.
Surely that's easy. The PCs don't do anything that sparks multiple combats. Their investigating in town, or their travelling through the wilderness, and you haven't done anything to alter the rest schedule.

Even in terms of utility, in theory if there is little combat the Warlock should be able to cast utility spells, but they know few spells, and they don't know if using spell slots out of combat is going to come back and bite them.

My feeling though is that this is not a problem with the Warlock. The Warlock class is actually fine, and the trade-offs in terms of spell slots between combat and utility are about right. It's the full casters that are the problem - they have far too many spell slots and ritual casting costs too little.
 

Asisreo

Patron Badass
The PCs don't do anything that sparks multiple combats. Their investigating in town, or their travelling through the wilderness, and you haven't done anything to alter the rest schedule.
But those are the situations where the warlock can take an hour rest while everyone else is doing their own thing. Even if they're traveling, there's 8 hours of traveling, 8 hours of long resting, and 8 hours of absolutely nothing. Even with a combat encounter, that's at best 7 hours and 59 minutes of time for the warlock to cast a bunch of spells.

Nevermind the fact that if they encounter a non-combat obstacle, the warlock can resolve it and everyone spends one of their 8 unaccounted for hours to rest. They'd still cover the same ground.
 

But those are the situations where the warlock can take an hour rest while everyone else is doing their own thing. Even if they're traveling, there's 8 hours of traveling, 8 hours of long resting, and 8 hours of absolutely nothing. Even with a combat encounter, that's at best 7 hours and 59 minutes of time for the warlock to cast a bunch of spells.
Being able to take short rests easily doesn't really matter if everyone else is able to take long rests just as easily.
Nevermind the fact that if they encounter a non-combat obstacle, the warlock can resolve it and everyone spends one of their 8 unaccounted for hours to rest. They'd still cover the same ground.
Assuming they know for certain they can rest immediately afterwards. Otherwise the Wizard has a distinct advantage as they sacrfice a lot less when they spend one of their spell slots (Unless it turns out to be a long enough day as to seriously drain those spell slots - but we're specifically addressing situations where that is not the case)
 

Asisreo

Patron Badass
Being able to take short rests easily doesn't really matter if everyone else is able to take long rests just as easily.
You can only have 1 long rest per 24 hours. So even if there was the idea of taking long rests repeatedly, that still gives more slots to the warlock since between every long rest, there can fit several short rests.

Assuming they know for certain they can rest immediately afterwards. Otherwise the Wizard has a distinct advantage as they sacrfice a lot less when they spend one of their spell slots (Unless it turns out to be a long enough day as to seriously drain those spell slots - but we're specifically addressing situations where that is not the case)
How often are there situations where the party can't rest immediately after resolving an issue outside a dungeon crawl?

And even then, "distinct advantage" is a bit of a stretch. Warlocks are competent in combat even without slots, though unless the fight was an extremely deadly encounter, would it matter?

Like, a level 9 warlock used both 5th-level slots to cast Major Image twice 30 minutes ago and a Young Red Dragon appears...the party will still beat it with minimal effort and the warlock has more than enough ways to contribute even without their 5th-level slots. Then the warlock can rest and continue contributing.
 

You can only have 1 long rest per 24 hours. So even if there was the idea of taking long rests repeatedly, that still gives more slots to the warlock since between every long rest, there can fit several short rests.
So? What is the Warlock spending those slots on? If there's no immediate problems that need solving with magic what does it matter?

How often are there situations where the party can't rest immediately after resolving an issue outside a dungeon crawl?
Well, whenever the failure to resolve the issue results in a combat for one.
 

Raduin711

Adventurer
Because the rest of the party is, in general, incentivized to also short rest if one person is able to take one. You can spend HD, you regain any short-rest features you may have (more relevant for some classes than others, see below). Splitting the party is (almost) always a bad plan, and if one person is genuinely truly safe and comfortable enough to rest reliably, it's not clear why everyone wouldn't be.
That's true in the more dungeon-focused periods of the game, but I think during the story sections this adherence to sticking together is somewhat relaxed. Characters can be doing things like gathering information, studying, shopping, drinking at the tavern, and so on, any of which could take an hour or more. A warlock taking an hour to rest is one blip among many.

I don't think this is necessarily a bad thing. Some classes are just more useful during these moments of the game than others. Bards have always been masters of the schmooze and information gathering, while barbarians... need... their energies directed in a constructive direction, let's say. The fact that Warlocks have one up on wizards and sorcerers during these times is no big deal IMO. Nor do I think it's necessarily disruptive. It CAN be, if we are on a time-sensitive story beat and the warlock insists on a rest, but the warlock isn't even unique in this regard.
 

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