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D&D 5E "As a DM I don't pay all that much attention (if any) to the PCs' remaining resources." (a poll)

"As a DM I don't pay all that much attention (if any) to the PCs' remaining resources."

  • True.

    Votes: 72 69.2%
  • False.

    Votes: 32 30.8%


I went back and forth on the question. In the end, I can't say that I don't pay any attention. I would like to not pay any attention, but I play with a lot of new players IRL, and I play PBP here, where I have generally not been able to leave it up to the players to track. Mostly, I can trust them, but not all will keep track. Of course, I can't be trusted to keep track either (I'm notorious for losing saves), so I figure between the bunch of us, it'll work out close enough to correct.

With my home group, I don't pay any attention, though.

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Moderator Emeritus
I find it interesting that most people seem to interpret this statement to mean "I don't keep track of the PCs various remaining resources like hit points or spells slots," but it seems at least one person has interpreted it mean "I handwave stuff like how many rations or pieces of ammunition they have left" (and thus voted false).

I generally don't care how many charges a character has left on their magic item, Hit Dice, or uses of an ability before a long rest. The exception to this is if I suspect a player is themselves not paying attention. Not so much with regular arrows - I really don't care about ammunition, unless it's magical.

Now, one way I do care is if I know they're running low on HP, spells, and whatnot, I might softball an encounter a little. Unless they've spent their resources alpha-striking. Then that's on them and they'll have to take their lumps.


Morkus from Orkus
Again, a simple premise.

Respond True or False to this statement: ""As a DM (running D&D 5E) I don't pay all that much attention (if any) to the PCs' remaining resources."
In the last thread I said how I plan encounters based on what the party is capable of, so I have to know what all they can do. In this one I answered true, because I'm not responsible for whether they over or underuse those resources, so I really don't pay attention to them. If they are too free with those resources and run out before they hit a hard encounter, they are going to be in trouble.


"Diegetics", by L. Ron Gygax
I have a general sense of their hit points, and I stay aware of when they've blown major resources like high-level spells, wildshape uses, rages, etc. I pay slightly closer attention if the players are novices; not because I think they'll cheat, but just to make sure they're aware of the rules.


when I want to play resource games I play StarCraft. I keep a running tab of what they should have. (it may or may not be completely accurate) The only time I pay attention to individual resources is when it's for extremely exotic things like components for a wish spell or some such thing.


I voted “Yes”, because I’ve had cheaters at my table - but is actually “Kinda?”

I do track HP (double-entry bookkeeping…), and have a feel of about how many spells and whatnot the party has left. My ear is always open for the words, “that was my last spell, power, etc.”


A Title Much Cooler Than Anything on the Old Site
I play on a VTT and even though I rarely look at the PC character sheets, the initiative tracker includes a graphic showing how low each character's HP is.

Listing to the Glass Cannon podcast (GCP) is making me want to turn this off. In the GCP the players don't tell the GM their HP. As a GM I like this. Part of the fun is not being completely in control of the story. Sure I'll have an idea of which PCs are in trouble, but not knowning the exact number would make things more interesting for me as the GM.

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