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D&D 5E Asking for Ability Checks, not Skills?

Ooo, interesting takes! I usually just ask for specific skills, so the choice to swap a skill's modifier with another Ability Score is super fascinating. I tend to ask for people to choose between two sometimes, though, because sometimes I could see either Persuasion or Performance being applicable, for instance!
 

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Charlaquin

Goblin Queen (She/They)
Ooo, interesting takes! I usually just ask for specific skills, so the choice to swap a skill's modifier with another Ability Score is super fascinating. I tend to ask for people to choose between two sometimes, though, because sometimes I could see either Persuasion or Performance being applicable, for instance!
I highly recommend giving it a try!
 

DND_Reborn

Legend
What I'm thinking of doing is only calling for Abilities, not Skills. I'll call for a Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, Intelligence, Wisdom, or Charisma check, and then the Player will choose whatever Skill or Proficiency is appropriate.
So, I haven't had time to read through the entire thread and my apologies if this has already been addressed.

But, what you are suggesting is exactly what you are supposed to to in 5E. 5E doesn't have "skill checks", it has ability checks, where if the character has proficiency in a skill, that the DM decides is applicable, they get to add their proficiency bonus to the ability check.

What you were doing before is what a lot of tables do, however, because earlier versions of D&D had skill checks where you added your ability modifier. 5E swapped things around. shrug

Anyway, glad it is working out well for you. :)
 

What do you think? Do you think this would work? Do you usually call for skills, abilities, or both?
I have experience with three ways: calling for skill, calling for ability, and calling for skills with the subjective ability attached. All three work fine.

The first, we all know. To me, from a DMing standpoint, leaves the most in the DM's court. They generally have to narrate the results, and many times, the actions leading to the result.

The second leaves a bit more in the player's court. The DM calls for the roll, then the player describes what they do based on which skill they want to use. Then the DM narrates the end results.

The last seems to be a mixture of the two. And in my opinion, can be divided into two separate ways, closed or open. The closed way means the DM is deciding not only the skill, but also the stat. A lot of narration on their side to explain the rationale. For example, the DM might call for an intelligence acrobatics check to see if the PC can figure out the timing mechanisms of the gauntlet they are running through. That type of roll requires the players to be able to picture why it is an intelligence acrobatics check. So, to me, this is the choice that leaves the most in the DM's court.

The second way, open, I think leaves the most in the player's court. It is basically saying, describe what you do, attach an attribute and whatever skill you think is relevant, and then narrate the entire thing except the very end. For players that enjoy this, it is great. For others, it is awful. I have found, most tables are a mix of these types of players.

Summary of checks from most DM input to least:
Closed skill and attribute call
Skill call
Attribute call
Open skill and attribute call
 

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