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Four Ability Scores

Yaarel

Explorer
The four abilities you've listed are essentially offensive abilities; Str and Dex are defended by Con and Int and Cha are defended by Wis.
Actually, the foursome of ability scores came into existence from the defensive abilities.

Strength = Fortitude
Dexterity = Reflex
Charisma = Will
Intelligence = Perception (saves versus hiding, invisibility, forgery, illusion)

Less inhibited by a fixed sacred cow, D&D saves are where the more elegant mechanics were able to evolve. The foursome essentially uses these four mechanically useful defenses for both defense and offense.

The defenses are also part of why each in the foursome are more equal in usefulness.
 

dnd4vr

Adventurer
Actually, the foursome of ability scores came into existence from the defensive abilities.

Strength = Fortitude
Dexterity = Reflex
Charisma = Will
Intelligence = Perception (saves versus hiding, invisibility, forgery, illusion)

Less inhibited by a fixed sacred cow, D&D saves are where the more elegant mechanics were able to evolve. The foursome essentially uses these four mechanically useful defenses for both defense and offense.

The defenses are also part of why each in the foursome are more equal in usefulness.
Those might be how you would intend to use them, but aren't their purpose currently. I think that was Quartz's point.

I do think it wouldn't be too difficult to split much of WIS into either INT or CHA, but I would also rather see saves separated from abilities again. There are plenty of people who are dexterous, but have poor reflexes, many strong people, with poor health, and so on.
 

Aldarc

Adventurer
I do think it wouldn't be too difficult to split much of WIS into either INT or CHA, but I would also rather see saves separated from abilities again. There are plenty of people who are dexterous, but have poor reflexes, many strong people, with poor health, and so on.
Sure, but this is a matter of how much distinction you want the ability scores. What purpose are they meant to serve for the system? Some people are wise but unobservant. Some people are unobservant but willful. And yet D&D says that they are all Wisdom. We can say that some people are agile but not dexterous, and yet D&D says that it's a trifling matter and combines them anyway into Dexterity, much as Cypher System uses Speed. Fantasy AGE distinguishes between Accuracy and Dexterity. Warhammer Fantasy RP distinguishes between Agility, Dexterity, Initiative, and Ballistic Skill.

I will admit that I have never been satisfied with D&D's ability scores for a variety of reasons; however, the way that some of its fans treat it as perfect or canonical for FRPGs is a bit irritating, even if I never expect it to change for D&D.

All that said, I'm not sure that this thread should be about what ability scores D&D should have, but, rather, what ability scores Yaarel wants for his fantasy heartbreaker. Because it will take a fantasy heartbreaker to make this revised system work. That's fine. I don't think that this belongs as part of the D&D subforum, when it would likely be more appropriate for the General RP subforum.
 
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Yaarel

Explorer
This is a D&D thread.

The D&D ability score tradition is fraught, evolves, and continues to provoke frustration, commentary, and suggestions to rethink it. D&D has allowed additional abilities (1e Comeliness, 5e Honor, etcetera), D&D has radically revamped the math (3e), rethought its usefulness in combat (4e), and made separate (1e) or identical (4e and 5e) with saving throws. And so on. The D&D ability score tradition is still in flux.

After looking carefully at the foursome ability system in Forgotten Lands (relating to Tales from the Loop, etcetera), is impressed me how elegant it is AND how easy it is to implement it in D&D 5e, as a rules variant.

Simply using Dexterity for the Athletics skill, and using Intelligence for the Perception skill, solves most of the problems in D&D ability scores. Then using the Strength score for Constitution and using the Charisma score for Wisdom, ensures there are no dump stats, where every stat is worth investing in mechanically, if that is the flavor that a player wants for their character concept.

I feel a foursome that is well thought out, can achieve the optimal balance between the ‘splitters’ and the ‘lumpers’, the most verisimilitudinous gaming benefit for the least cost in complexity.

So, in this thread, it is relevant to look at other games, to see what they are doing with their ability systems, to see what works well, and what works less well.
 

Yaarel

Explorer
I do think it wouldn't be too difficult to split much of WIS into either INT or CHA, but I would also rather see saves separated from abilities again.
Yeah, 5e Wisdom is particularly problematic because it includes two saving throw categories (Will and Perception), while Intelligence is a dump stat.

D&D 4e and 5e made ability scores identical to the saving throws. It makes sense. People who are competent at offense tend to be competent at defense as well.

Even so, the bonuses for defense tend to be different from the bonuses for offense, so each category gets handled separately anyway. So the ability score is more like a general aptitude that tends to influence both of them positively.



There are plenty of people who are dexterous, but have poor reflexes, many strong people, with poor health, and so on.
It depend what one means by the English word ‘dexterity’. If one only means ‘manual dexterity’, then it has nothing to do with dodging, little to do with an AC bonus, and is humorously absurd to save against a Fireball.

However, if one means ‘bodily agility’, then people who are highly agile correlate strongly with quick reflexes (autonomic neural response, gross motor skills).



‘Poor health’ doesnt really make sense in D&D anyway. For example, the Elf traditionally has an epic lifespan − one would assume because of an epic Constitution − but actually tends to have lower Constitution compared to other races. An other example. The D&D 5e death saves are unrelated to Constitution. So even the 1e concept of ‘system shock survival’ no longer exists. The male/female distinction between male upper body strength and female longevity no longer exists in D&D anyway. The concept of health cuts across many D&D mechanics, and is unsystematic.

That said, people who tend to be ‘healthy’ (exercising often, resisting illnesses, healing from injuries) generally tend to be physically stronger than people who are unhealthy.

Having one score for Strength-Constitution means this character is good at melee combat. It is a useful and meaningful number.
 

dnd4vr

Adventurer
Yeah, 5e Wisdom is particularly problematic because it includes two saving throw categories (Will and Perception), while Intelligence is a dump stat.

D&D 4e and 5e made ability scores identical to the saving throws. It makes sense. People who are competent at offense tend to be competent at defense as well.

Even so, the bonuses for defense tend to be different from the bonuses for offense, so each category gets handled separately anyway. So the ability score is more like a general aptitude that tends to influence both of them positively.
Well, depending on the build, there are usually two choices for dump stats for people who want to dump them. For example, while a fighter might not want to dump WIS (to aid in perception and saves), they could just as easily chose CHA as INT for an 8 if they want.

It depend what one means by the English word ‘dexterity’. If one only means ‘manual dexterity’, then it has nothing to do with dodging, little to do with an AC bonus, and is humorously absurd to save against a Fireball.

However, if one means ‘bodily agility’, then people who are highly agile correlate strongly with quick reflexes (autonomic neural response, gross motor skills).
This issue with DEX is it encompasses WAY too much: balance, manual dexterity, agility, reflexes, hand-eye coordination, flexibility, and probably more.

The idea with ability scores in D&D is someone with a high DEX excels at all these things, perhaps to various degrees, but all are strong to some extent.

‘Poor health’ doesnt really make sense in D&D anyway. For example, the Elf traditionally has an epic lifespan − one would assume because of an epic Constitution − but actually tends to have lower Constitution compared to other races. An other example. The D&D 5e death saves are unrelated to Constitution. So even the 1e concept of ‘system shock survival’ no longer exists. The male/female distinction between male upper body strength and female longevity no longer exists in D&D anyway. The concept of health cuts across many D&D mechanics, and is unsystematic.

That said, people who tend to be ‘healthy’ (exercising often, resisting illnesses, healing from injuries) generally tend to be physically stronger than people who are unhealthy.

Having one score for Strength-Constitution means this character is good at melee combat. It is a useful and meaningful number.
The elf physiology cannot be known of course, but I have always thought that "lower" CON was due to their smaller body structure. Their long life is more likely contributed to slower metabolism, etc.

Anyway, we play death saves ARE linked to CON. It is not a CON save, but a CON check since it makes sense that someone with a high CON, robust and healthy, would be more likely to have their body withstand the trauma of injury and self-stabilize. Likewise, a poor CON would be less likely for the body to stabilize due to frailer health, poor diet, etc. (pick your reason really...).

Concepts like system shock are still there, such as the rules for suffering massive damage.

IIRC there was never a distinction between male/female for strength, flexibility, pain tolerance, etc. There should be IMO (say females -2 STR, +1 DEX, +1 CON, or for the female-centric group, males +2 STR, -1 DEX, -1 CON).

But, for example, there are MANY example of strong people, such as a man I work with who I would imagine has a STR 16 or better! would, due to his being very overweight, smoking, and does little cardio, would have a CON 9 or maybe even 8. Likewise, when I ran cross country, I would put my CON around 14, but my STR at 10 at most.

In the idea of a combined STR/CON ability score, how would these people be represented???
 

Yaarel

Explorer
This issue with DEX is it encompasses WAY too much: balance, manual dexterity, agility, reflexes, hand-eye coordination, flexibility, and probably more.
Yeah, Dex is overwhelmingly useful/powerful compared to the other abilities.

One of the benefits of combining Str-Con and Cha-Wis is, they become more equal to Dex.

It occurs to me, if Intelligence handles both Perception (observational skills) and Initiative (notice something coming), then the reallife archetype of an intelligent Fighter becomes easier to build.
 

Yaarel

Explorer
But, for example, there are MANY example of strong people, such as a man I work with who I would imagine has a STR 16 or better! would, due to his being very overweight, smoking, and does little cardio, would have a CON 9 or maybe even 8. Likewise, when I ran cross country, I would put my CON around 14, but my STR at 10 at most.

In the idea of a combined STR/CON ability score, how would these people be represented???
Here there are several factors.

• Lifting weights works better as a separate skill, Weightlifting, that people literally train in (weighttraining). So, characters who have a high Str-Con score get a bonus when making a Weightlifting check.

• For the sake of a clean line, a distinction is made between lifting oneself to move, via Dex, and lifting something else to carry via Str-Con. So the person with high Dex looks more agile or fit, while the person with high Str-Con looks bigger and tougher.
 
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dnd4vr

Adventurer
Here there are several factors.

• Lifting weights works better as a separate skill, Weightlifting, that people literally train in (weighttraining). So, characters who have a high Str-Con score get a bonus when making a Weightlifting check.

• For the sake, clean line, a distinction is made between lifting oneself to move, via Dex, and lifting something else to carry via Str-Con. So the person with high Dex looks more agile or fit, while the person with high Str-Con looks bigger and tougher.
But a high STR doesn't have to come from weight-training. Some people, like this guy I work with, is just big and strong. Think of the "grew up on the farm-type".

What about the cross-country runner? Smaller upper body, but great stamina and wind capacity, etc.
 

Yaarel

Explorer
But a high STR doesn't have to come from weight-training. Some people, like this guy I work with, is just big and strong. Think of the "grew up on the farm-type".

What about the cross-country runner? Smaller upper body, but great stamina and wind capacity, etc.
I didnt literally mean heading to the gym. ‘Growing up on the farm’ (carrying barrels, tilling soil, etcetera) is a way for someone to get ‘trained’ in the suggested Weightlifting skill. I know someone who got extremely strong (can lift a car) because of being a mechanic for large engines.

An ability is only a general aptitude, a tendency to be good at a cluster of skills and classes. Each skill is the specific. The total bonus comes from both ability and proficiency.

A marathon runner is tough and might potentially be good at avoiding Fatigue, but not bother getting trained in Weightlifting. Oppositely, a person with low toughness might choose to train in Weightlifting and endurance.
 
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Aldarc

Adventurer
The D&D ability score tradition is fraught, evolves, and continues to provoke frustration, commentary, and suggestions to rethink it. D&D has allowed additional abilities (1e Comeliness, 5e Honor, etcetera), D&D has radically revamped the math (3e), rethought its usefulness in combat (4e), and made separate (1e) or identical (4e and 5e) with saving throws. And so on. The D&D ability score tradition is still in flux.
Some things in tradition are in flux while other things solidify over time. The name and number of ability scores for D&D have not changed once during the WotC era. I doubt that they will because it is now an iconic part of their brand in terms of how people conceptualize D&D. This is why any game that reformed those ability scores would invariably be a fantasy heartbreaker rather than anything that one would reasonably expect to change within D&D.

After looking carefully at the foursome ability system in Forgotten Lands (relating to Tales from the Loop, etcetera), is impressed me how elegant it is AND how easy it is to implement it in D&D 5e, as a rules variant.

I feel a foursome that is well thought out, can achieve the optimal balance between the ‘splitters’ and the ‘lumpers’, the most verisimilitudinous gaming benefit for the least cost in complexity.
I typically like a spread of 3-5 ability scores for games that choose to have ability scores.

So, in this thread, it is relevant to look at other games, to see what they are doing with their ability systems, to see what works well, and what works less well.
When I have more time later, I will provide some other alternatives that have developed. In the mean time, you may enjoy reading several articles from Angry GM:

‘Poor health’ doesnt really make sense in D&D anyway.
But, for example, there are MANY example of strong people, such as a man I work with who I would imagine has a STR 16 or better! would, due to his being very overweight, smoking, and does little cardio, would have a CON 9 or maybe even 8. Likewise, when I ran cross country, I would put my CON around 14, but my STR at 10 at most.

In the idea of a combined STR/CON ability score, how would these people be represented???
It's not as if being overweight or negative health consequences of smoking has much bearing in D&D. These are things that may have less to do with their Constitution score but their lifestyle choices. In D&D, these are often relegated to aesthetics. You can make a grossly overweight character with an 18 Constitution. You can say that they are chain-smokers and they would still have a 18 Constitution as far as the game is concerned because D&D is not concerned with simulating these things via their ability scores.

So how could this work though in a system where Strength and Constitution are combined? Training and Skills. If we look at Forbidden Lands, which Yaarel mentioned several posts earlier, it combines Strength and Constitution under Strength, but it distinguishes between Endurance and Might for skills.
 
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dnd4vr

Adventurer
It's not as if being overweight or negative health consequences of smoking has much bearing in D&D. These are things that may have less to do with their Constitution score but their lifestyle choices. In D&D, these are often relegated to aesthetics. You can make a grossly overweight character with an 18 Constitution. You can say that they are chain-smokers and they would still have a 18 Constitution as far as the game is concerned because D&D is not concerned with simulating these things via their ability scores.

So how could this work though in a system where Strength and Constitution are combined? Training and Skills. If we look at Forbidden Lands, which Yaarel mentioned several posts earlier, it combines Strength and Constitution under Strength, but it distinguishes between Endurance and Might for skills.
I disagree because otherwise what do these things represent?

You could not have a CON 18 (well, 20 in 5E) being grossly overweight (heart attack, anyone?) and a heavy smoker (lung cancer, no wind to keep swinging your sword repeatedly, etc.). CON is your "health, stamina, and vital force" in 5E, admittedly a simple definition compared to other editions.

While these things have no mechanical "bearing" in D&D (saying your character smokes 20 pipes a day for instance), by the meaning of CON you should consider what than means. Could a heavy smoker have a 14 or even 16, maybe if their other elements of health (low body fat, good diet and genes, physical activity to keep them in "shape", etc.) were all good. Could a very heavy character have a good CON like 14 or 16 also? Sure, if other things are exceptional, they are off-setting the body fat enough to raise the average to high levels.

One of our players is massively overweight at 29 y.o. He has joint issues already, moves slowly coming down the stairs, etc. Now, his "vital force" might be great, at least a 5 out of 6, as he is full of energy and always alert, etc. But, his health is probably a 2 or 3 at best (out of 6), and his stamina maybe a 3. I could see his overall CON being 10 or 11 (average) at best, being generous you could even argue for a 12. If you go to the low end, he might only have a 9 (I doubt lower, though). If he lost weight, exercised and made better food choices, I could see him moving up to CON 14, maybe even higher if he really kept at it.

Another player is younger with very low body fat and somewhat active (works outdoors some), but smokes a lot. He can be active for a while, but gets winded. His diet is also not very good. He is probably sitting on a CON of 12 or 13, maybe 14 at best.

Personally, my own CON is probably 12-13 as well. I am older (45), but never smoked, rarely drink, somewhat physically active, eat a decent diet, but I am overweight. If I lost 30-40 lbs, I would probably have a CON 14-15. If I started working out a lot and improved my diet even more, I might make a CON 16 even. That's it for me, though. I would have to make major lifestyle changes, etc. to ever get better than that, and honestly might not have the genetics to even go higher. But, that is why I say when I was just starting college, running track (sprints, hurdles, jumps), cross country, lifting weights 3x weekly, with about 10% body fat, I could easily argue for a CON 14 -16 even.

If a CON 20 is someone with perfect (well, as best as possible) health, stamina, and vital force, I would easily subtract a point or two for each issue they have. So, you argue for one issue (overweight, poor diet, bad genes, smokes, drinks excessively, etc.) an 18 or 19 might be possible if you play as if all other things are excellent, but throw in more problems, and CON would go down.

After all, when someone plays a CON 8, what does that character often look like? Sickly, small framed, often tired, or a similar condition.

People complain about dump stats. I very rarely have a character without 10 or better in everything. Once in a while I might choose a 9 for something if I then play it off as part of their make up. An elf wizard with a STR 9, an overweight cleric with DEX 9 or CON 9, a shy and uncertain monk fresh out of the monastery with CHA 9, and so on.

It isn't as though you couldn't represent everything as skills instead, but the core 6 work for me because I have a clear and distinct understanding of what the mean, how they work, and there is very little overlap. Are strong characters more likely to have good health, sure, of course, but it isn't unreasonable to have a STR 18 and CON 10 or 12 or vice versa. I wouldn't want a system personally where I had to have dozens of skills or feats to compensate for all the variety of combinations I can have by just using the core 6 ability scores.

Sacred cows has nothing to do with it for me. If someone comes up with a better system, I am all for it.
 

Aldarc

Adventurer
I disagree because otherwise what do these things represent?
Ability scores certainly do not represent real people nor should we attempt to ascribe ability scores to real people as you are repeatedly, mistakenly attempting to do here. I would kindly dissuade you from thinking about actual people in such crude terms.

I would suggest looking at the actual evidence about what these scores represent given the fact that one can be an overweight chainsmoker in D&D with an 18 Constitution because this may mean that ability scores do not necessarily represent what you expect them to represent.
 

dnd4vr

Adventurer
Ability scores certainly do not represent real people nor should we attempt to ascribe ability scores to real people as you are repeatedly, mistakenly attempting to do here. I would kindly dissuade you from thinking about actual people in such crude terms.

I would suggest looking at the actual evidence about what these scores represent given the fact that one can be an overweight chainsmoker in D&D with an 18 Constitution because this may mean that ability scores do not necessarily represent what you expect them to represent.
Ability scores represent the people we play and we can imagine them to be as real as we want. It is very condescending to tell me I must do otherwise. As I said, if not, what do they represent to you?

The quote about CON was right from the PHB: "health, stamina, vital force." It represents, in game terms, exactly what I said it does.

You can convince yourself that maybe a character's vital force is SO incredibly and awesomely amazing that their CON is 20 even though they weight 400 lbs, smoke all day long, eat nothing but candy, only walk to the kitchen and bathroom for their daily exercise, and so on. I'll stick with what the core 6 and the concept of ability scores actually mean according to the game, thanks.
 

Celebrim

Hero
You certainly could reduce the number of ability scores, but based on my experience with other systems you'd just be moving the granularity around to other parts of the system.

Take the problem of making Charisma = Will. A moment's thought will convince you that there are people who are very likable and personable - even vivacious - who lack the element of the mind that corresponds will power, self-control, self-denial, delayed gratification, and the ability to stand up for themselves. So if you combine Charisma and the concept of Will, you'll find yourself needing to produce granularity somewhere else. You might find that you need to add a defect system to the game such that a person can be 'Weak Willed' as a modifier to their charisma bonus with respect to the Will. Or if you remove CON, you might really need space for a 'Tough' advantage to account for person's that are harder to kill than their strength alone might suggest.

Whenever you consolidate ability scores, what you are always doing is moving your granularity from ability scores to your skill system. My strong suspicion is that if you consolidated ability scores enough to remove two of them, you'd find yourself needing to add 2-4 skills to the system to account for the reduced granularity. For example, you might find that if you remove CON, you really need an Endurance skill to represent strong but not tough (an out of shape ex football player with a beer belly) or tough but not strong (a female triathlete that is all lean and lanky).

There is also a certain amount of this that feels like you've spent most of your time playing D&D and are just encountering other concepts, so that a Fantasy Heartbreaker is in the offing. While D&D's big six are by far the most influential ways of looking at a character, the more systems you play the more you'll see concepts and granularity broken off in different ways. Some systems have a Luck ability score, which varies from the trivial to being more of a god stat than Dexterity. Some systems break Dexterity in to Agility and motor Dexterity, for the old grandma that can out knit anyone but has a hard time getting out of her chair. D&D with the introduction of the Sorcerer has tended to see Charisma as tied to magical prowess, but other systems have Magic as a separate ability score so that you can have magical adepts that aren't particularly likeable or good with crowds. Some systems make Size or Body it's own thing, so that the persons size has a direct mechanical impact in the system and can be usefully calculated from. Some systems break charisma down further into things like Chutzpah, Leadership, Magneticism, Appearance, and so on and so forth. Others break Intelligence down further by separating academic or Technical knowledge from Cunning or Moxie.

And if you don't do something like that, then you either have to make those distinctions skills or declare that the distinctions aren't really important.

Ultimately, the decision to add or remove ability scores from a system has less to do with whether a system works, than it is a reflection about what the designer really cares about in terms of verisimilitude and character conception.
 

dnd4vr

Adventurer
You certainly could reduce the number of ability scores, but based on my experience with other systems you'd just be moving the granularity around to other parts of the system.
This is an excellent point. I've played in systems with no ability scores and up to 12. Whatever the mechanics (ability scores, skills, feats, talents, knowledges, etc.) you have to account for all the stuff somewhere!
 

Yaarel

Explorer
The elf physiology cannot be known of course, but I have always thought that "lower" CON was due to their smaller body structure. Their long life is more likely contributed to slower metabolism, etc.
You mention, "I have always thought that lower Con [of the elf] was do to their smaller body structure."

This thought suggests that Con has nothing to do with remaining healthy indefinitely, but rather more pertinently refers to Size.

In other words, Constitution measures toughness in combat: the ability to survive combat, the ability to take punches, even the ability to survive stab wounds.

Con isnt a measure of ‘health’ (including persistent health that makes longevity possibility). Rather, Constitution specifically measures combat toughness.

Here in combat, bigger tends to be better. The heavyweight has an advantage over the lightweight.

Bigger also applies to other factors. For example, small children are more vulnerable to snake bites than big adults. But the essence is, Constitution measures combat toughness.

Bigger also hits harder. A glance thru the Monster Manual shows a strong correlation between Strength scores and Constitution scores that are normally, moreorless the same score.

In D&D, Strength and Constitution are normally the same thing.

By making Weightlifting a separate skill. A Str-Con score will tend to have some advantage when lifting a weight. But a small creature can still be unusually strong by training in the skill, or even having a race trait that grants a bonus or an advantage to the Weightlifting skill.
 

Yaarel

Explorer
I typically like a spread of 3-5 ability scores for games that choose to have ability scores.

When I have more time later, I will provide some other alternatives that have developed.
I am interested in seeing your considerations about ability scores.



Some things in tradition are in flux while other things solidify over time. The name and number of ability scores for D&D have not changed once during the WotC era. I doubt that they will because it is now an iconic part of their brand in terms of how people conceptualize D&D. This is why any game that reformed those ability scores would invariably be a fantasy heartbreaker rather than anything that one would reasonably expect to change within D&D.
I value tradition. I consider traditions to be human experiments that survive the test of time. The ability to survive often includes accidentally accounting for factors that might still remain unknown or unrecognized.

At the same time, in the big picture, traditions tend to follow a bell curve, their initial innovation prospers because of some inherent benefit. But then as new needs or situations emerge, the tradition tends to decline.

To keep a tradition ongoing indefinitely, it is necessary to reinvent the tradition to address new concerns.

No tradition is perfect. Each tradition is an ongoing cost-benefit decision, often a personal one.



Regarding D&D 5e. It is something I campaigned for during D&D 4e. WotC must listen to what D&D players actually want D&D to be, rather than have designers impose it. WotC actually listened to a degree that wildly exceeded my expectations. WotC paid for massive public opinion surveys coordinating with broadly accessible public playtesting. The result is D&D 5e. D&D is a vibrant and living tradition.



But improvement remains possible, especially as support for variant rules, that assist minority groups to enjoy D&D.

Part of the success of 5e is the ability to inspire earlier gamers who are more familiar with 1e/2e. So, to some degree, 5e reincarnated the problematics of the earlier ability scores, for the sake of nostalgia.

The ability scores emerged during D&D 1e in a nonsystematic, ad-hoc, way. (Heh, I think of 1e as the Cambrian epoch of rpg.) Some aspects of the ability system continue to work exceptionally well, while other aspects work less well.
 
Ability scores are there so we can play archetypes.

For example, Marion Ravenswood, from the Indiana Jones movie series. In her first scene, we meet her drinking a bit fat guy under a table. She isn't physically strong, so we couldn't model her with a high Strength score - we need a seperate way of treating strength and constitution.

We need to be able to answer questions about our characters. Question slike, how much can they carry, how good are they at resisting adventurer challenges (hunger, tiredness, poison, sickness), how good they are at overcoming challenges (climbing ropes, fighting monsters, avoiding traps).

I think the 6 scores do a pretty good job, but I wish some of them would be renamed to be what they actually do (either that, or more people read the 5E PHB to realise that the Wisdom score has nothing to do with being wise or foolish).
 

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