Well, sure, go right there whydontchya? ;PThere seems to be some 4e partisanship going on in your response that makes a ton of assumptions.
I'm very much a D&D partisan*, but credit where it's due - and where goals & objectives are met.
5e's goals did not include "improve the dependability of CR guidelines." I mean, they may have been down there on the priority list somewhere, but, you can't blame a design for doing something only moderately well that it wasn't much trying to do, at all...
I hear that now and then. I suppose that might've caught on sometime in 2e, when that ed was aping storyteller, but 1e & 3e, generally tended to use minis, one way or another, IMX. We all just have had different experiences, especially "back in the day."For example, with respect to Theater of the Mind, most of the 1e/2e play that I did used TotM as well
I would not expect a 1e table to be accustomed to TotM play, period. Like I said, different experiences.I mean seriously, you wouldn't expect a 1e table accustomed to assume TotM play to nonetheless assume combat continued to function as normal if a Paladin in platemail fell into the salty sea while battling a squid.
1e did have some quite detailed, perhaps a tad merciless, rules on underwater combat, though, that's a rather extreme example of 'terrain.'
Nod. OTOH, he's been grabbed by a giant squid, he won't be doing a lot of moving, anyway. (Ironically, the deadliest thing the squid might do is let the paladin go - some 1e DMs just loved drowning characters in heavy armor.)There would be certainly assumptions made about the ability of the Paladin to move in this new environment - to say nothing of breathing in it
TotM tends to shake out like that, the things it doesn't handle get ignored. 5e CR guidelines double-down on that, a bit, because TotM works most easily with few enemies or reasons to move around, and 5e CR works best for few (or one) enemy, too. The path of least resistance in the default mode is simple encounters with lone monsters.
At the risk of sounding "4e partisan," again, the notorious 4e monsters in question were in KotSf and the MMI, and the latter wereAs for the assignment of CR, 3e, Pathfinder, and 4e all had monsters which were notorious for being harder than their CR suggested
I can't say I've seen a lot of that. I've certainly seen combat go much harder than intended, but it's not typically just the one monster CR that's at fault. It's numbers telling heavily due to BA, or the party not having the right composition...And as far as I can tell as an outsider, 5e has continued this with several monsters being much harder than their CR would suggest - ropers, magmin, intellect devourers, shadows, zombies, etc. So when I say that the CR is wrong, I mean 'wrong' in a very literal sense that the wrong number was probably assigned to the CR.
...and it's prettymuch limited to the lowest levels. After that 5e seems to break too easy a lot more than too hard.
* But there was no partisan, nor spetum, in 4e, or 3e for that matter - Ransuer was the closest equivalent, IIRC. You gotta go back to AD&D for the cool polearms.