Has anyone got any flak for buildung a character that wasnt optimized?

ryu289

Villager
I came across this and:

Oh, wow, you also describe her as edgy. I shouldn't be surprised. Just figured, hey, NPC's gotta NPC. It got your narcissistic knickers in a twist? Oh boo-hoo, you went on the internet to talk about your stupid elf-game cliche, and everyone didn't blindly, profusely praise your pretentious proclamations.

Again, I'm going to go out on a limb here and presume they just wanted to know why not, and you overreacted like all NPCs do when confronted with even minor disagreement. The only question here is whether you did it on purpose to drum up fake drama to exploit. I've seen your type beg for money all the time, so maybe it was a bad month for you, and you needed something to get your soy-swilling simps to pony up some extra cash to make ends meet.

No one is “concerned” about your stupid elf-game character that you intentionally made worse because you lack talent and personality. I also don't believe that anyone was ever furious with you over not choosing eldritch blast. I think you are lying, so the simps would ask if you were okay, emotionally validate you, and throw more money at you.

No, you don't. You people, your type. SJWs. NPCs. Millennials. Woke-folk. You are all such dishonest hypocrites. You always parrot these empty platitudes, but it's a lie. But then SJWs always lie. Not only do you think there are wrong ways to play, you think there are very, very specific things you must do, and if you don't? Well, you must hate your players. You're a terrible person, a racist, fascist, whatever.

You're incapable of thinking for yourself, so must strictly adhere to approved thoughts, statements, and other behaviors. Or at least purport to do so in public, whilst compelling others to do so constantly. But what else would you expect from an NPC, consistency? Fairness?

Yikes...in more relevant statements to the topic:
And what is optimizing? Picking a race that grants at least one bonus to an ability score your class depends on? Humans either suffer no penalties, or gain a floating bonus to whatever stat you want: are they optimal for all classes? Is a dwarf fighter “optimizing”? What about an elf fighter?
You people act like this is some grand cerebral pursuit. Want the highest AC? Buy the best armor and shield you can. Maybe there's some stupid feat to stack on top. Maybe there's a spell you can layer on that. There you go, best possible AC.
Most damage? Put your highest stat into Strength or Dexterity, and then get the biggest weapon you can. I know there have to be various feats that can boost weapon damage, so take those.
These are the obsessive behaviors of people with too much time on their hands, few if any friends, and no outlet. They make characters, perhaps read and re-read parts of some books, perhaps mull through forums in the hopes that someone did the legwork they were too lazy to, and watch YouTube videos where narcissists pretend to play games and grift a gullible audience.
The standard degree of optimization is to put your highest ability score into whatever one your class relies on (makes sense), and then picking a race that at least doesn't impose a disadvantage to what you want to do, made easier than other because WotC knows their core audience: millennials, frail in body and mind, spood-fed participation trophies and lies about how they are special, with all obstacles removed and consequences waived so they are never forced to exert themselves mentally or physically.
The hilarious thing is, you stupid, lazy NPCs are so focused purely on what's popular at the time, so incapable of thinking an independent thought and making an independent decision, that you've either ignored or dismissed the solution to your invented problem: any edition of D&D prior to 3rd.
Here you roll stats. Assign them in order. Only 3d6, which means your character will likely only have a score of 10-11. Shocking, I know. That's a modifier of +0. Races had penalties, so your ironically bog-standard “orc wizard” combo could be too stupid to even cast a spell, period, and would most certainly be barred from casting higher level spells.
Assuming you even made it that far, since XP tables were uneven, you had to roll hit points, healed at like 1 hit point per day, and only had one spell at 1st-level. I think the DM was even supposed to tell you which spells you had, or otherwise randomly generate them.
You could make things easier by rolling 4d6 and dropping the lowest, assign ability scores however you wish, but if you did it the default method? You could end up with a lot of very unusual characters, such as fighters with a high Strength but low Constitution. Or an average Strength and high Intelligence. All or good or low stats.
Point is, it was organic. You didn't have a pretentious player pretending like he thought of a fighter, but with an above average Charisma? Or a wizard with a low Intelligence and high Strength. Or any of that other Rian Johnson “subverting-your-expecations” naughty word. It's all been done. You aren't interesting, or smart, or special. Get your head out of your ass and try actually playing the game for once.
This is just petty:
“As Matt Mercer so eloquently once stated: "It is ridiculous to tell someone your fun is wrong"”
Ah, an argument of authority. As if Mercer is anything remotely resembling an authority figure in any context. Unsurprising you mention Mercer, yet another NPC that pretends to play for attention and money. What's funny (besides the fallacy) is that NPCs like yourself tell people they are playing wrong at every opportunity. I'd say it's ironic were hypocrisy not a golden standard for woke-folk.
But is he right? Is this woman complaining about nothing, or are there jerks who try and force people to "optimize" or some such?
 

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Longspeak

Explorer
What is "NPC" in this context? And why is that person you're quoting still allowed out in polite society?

On topic, yes. Not to the extent of the [redacted] piece(s) of [redacted] above. My group jeered when I made a Halfling Not-a-Thief (Waaaay back in AD&D 1e days).

Another time a party of strangers discovered my character was not statted correctly for a Bard. This was 2nd edition, and I billed my character as an "entertainer." But he was deliberately built using the concept "Fighter wishes he was a bard but doesn't have the scores."

The second group actually laughed when they finally realized, but still were a bit surprised at how not-optimized the character was. Fighter with non-weapon proficiency in bard "skills" like playing a lute and singing, for which his controlling ability wasn't good. I think he had a 9 Chr.

More recently, people I've gamed with have not cared if I did that.
 



Mezuka

Adventurer
He sounds like an angry grognard that never got over the fact that D&D continued without him after Original D&D. 🙃

My wife was repeatedly verbally attacked by one player because she refused to optimize her rogue character and refused to always play the optimal tactical combat action when her turn came up. She wanted to role play. He believed as soon as combat started D&D was a wargame and all roleplay should stop. Needless to say, the guy was booted out of the group.
 

Retreater

Legend
I don't begrudge people playing whatever characters they want - unless they're doing it to annoy the other players or be problematic in other ways. In which case, it's not their character - it's the player being a jerk.
One of my most fun, memorable characters was a gully dwarf who was terribly ineffective at most things. However, he was good at sneaking and gathering intel because he usually passed unnoticed. He just wasn't bright enough to interpret the intel in a meaningful way, so the other characters would have to make sense of what he saw.
"There's a door. There's a group of more than two people standing around the door. They're not really doing anything though. They're not going into the door and not knocking on it."
"So there's guards?"
"Why would they be guarding a door? A door would be hard to steal. I could try, but someone would have to help me carry it."
 

Ixal

Adventurer
Ignoring the language and the "not RPG related content" of the post, considering the discussions I have seen about how racial ASI and how many people seem to not even be able to grasp the idea of playing something not optimized, at least by picking the "correct" race for the class it wouldn't surprise if there were tables out there where not optimizing gives you dirty looks or worse.
 

TwoSix

Unserious gamer
Geez, my day just started off worse for reading just part of that.

Honestly, the person doing the fisking and the person being targeted both come across as horrible stereotypes of gamers, both trolling for attention on the internet by embodying unreasonable positions. I'm not going to waste any more time on either argument.
 

overgeeked

B/X Known World
Some players honestly seem to think their version of fun is the one true and objectively right way to have fun. They’re wrong, of course, but it’s still a thing some believe.

The optimizers I’ve come across tend to be this way. I’ve literally had optimizer players at my table tell other players they were stupid for not optimizing. I’ve also had optimizers sneer at other players for role-playing.

I know not all optimizers are like that. But after a certain point it’s easier to boot the lot and play without them around.
 

If the campaign is about effective combat characters defeating dangerous foes, then building a combat-weak character is actively undermining the campaign ethos, and so is "the wrong way to have fun", because it hurts other people's fun.

And, TBH, most traditional D&D style games are about effective combat characters defeating dangerous foes, so you should build at least a competent character. Your GM should make it clear whether or not the campaign is going to require optimized characters.
 

payn

Legend
If the campaign is about effective combat characters defeating dangerous foes, then building a combat-weak character is actively undermining the campaign ethos, and so is "the wrong way to have fun", because it hurts other people's fun.

And, TBH, most traditional D&D style games are about effective combat characters defeating dangerous foes, so you should build at least a competent character. Your GM should make it clear whether or not the campaign is going to require optimized characters.
Some editions of the game make the gulf between optimized and not quite large. So, I get some of this statement, though how folks treat each other is huge. Most of the stuff in the OP is just awful.
 


Li Shenron

Legend
Is this woman complaining about nothing, or are there jerks who try and force people to "optimize" or some such?
She's completely right.

I used to optimize back in the past (heck I played a Drow Incantatrix with Greater Spell Focus in 3.0) but I gradually learned that it wasn't that fun for me to succeed almost always with too little effort. When I get to be the player, I sometimes roll my PC stats and features just to see what comes up, and play whatever I get. It's NEVER unplayable. Sure it's best for a whole group to be on the same page, but still I wouldn't let anyone at my table patronize another on how they should design their PC.
 

I don't begrudge people playing whatever characters they want - unless they're doing it to annoy the other players or be problematic in other ways. In which case, it's not their character - it's the player being a jerk.
One of my most fun, memorable characters was a gully dwarf who was terribly ineffective at most things. However, he was good at sneaking and gathering intel because he usually passed unnoticed. He just wasn't bright enough to interpret the intel in a meaningful way, so the other characters would have to make sense of what he saw.
"There's a door. There's a group of more than two people standing around the door. They're not really doing anything though. They're not going into the door and not knocking on it."
"So there's guards?"
"Why would they be guarding a door? A door would be hard to steal. I could try, but someone would have to help me carry it."
It is the same level as Draxx in the guardian of the galaxy!
in fact it takes a pretty smart players, to push punchline, and idea from a low int character that are useful and fun for the group.
The same way it takes a full cooperative players to play a selfish character and make it a useful and fun character for the rest of the party.
 

UngainlyTitan

Legend
Supporter
I have watched some other Ginny Di videos and enjoyed them but it seems to me that the blog referenced is not really a response to Ginny Di's video more a projection of the authors issues onto that video. At least as far as I have read it.
It appears to me that Ginny Di posted her less than optimised warlock on social media somewhere and got pushback and then posted on twitter and got dogpiled.
She decided to make a video about and why wouldn't she, she has a hungry algorithm to feed. Is it real, I suspect so, it has happened to me after all. I suspect that it happens more often to women (even if the character is not actually sub-optimal, just unorthodox). That is called out and made fun of in "The Gamers: Dorkness Rising" movie.
 

J.Quondam

CR 1/8
And, TBH, most traditional D&D style games are about effective combat characters defeating dangerous foes, so you should build at least a competent character. Your GM should make it clear whether or not the campaign is going to require optimized characters.
To be fair, there's a very traditional and very beloved approach to D&D that starts with "roll 3d6, in order." That's not really a game about running "competent" characters. That's a game about making the most with what you've got.
 

Just reading the OP’s first block quote:

1) What a jerk. I agree with @overgeeked’s assessment that this person is still bitter that the hobby moved on from OD&D.

2) However, I also sometimes read posts about how “those mean power gamers bullied me” and I think, but don’t say, that the person is probably both intentionally causing drama with their suboptimal play AND exaggerating the reaction. (In fact, probably describing the reaction that they were hoping to provoke but failed to do so.)

In my experience I’ve seen roleplayers make suboptimal choices, and optimizers get a little impatient with those choices, but never on either side rising to the level of outright drama. Somehow people manage to coexist and have fun.
 

aco175

Legend
I agree that players should make characters that are competent, but not need to be optimized. The game itself is designed for average PCs and falls when the whole group is optimized. I like my group with nobody taking some of the big feats that seem a problem and they are still quite powerful.
 

MGibster

Legend
But is he right? Is this woman complaining about nothing, or are there jerks who try and force people to "optimize" or some such?
Yes, there are jerks who try to force people to optimize their characters. Not only during character generation, but even during game play when the "helpful" person will tell a player what action his or her character should take sometimes becoming irate when the player chooses an action that isn't optimal from a certain point of view.

I despise those players. I want players to make characters they think are interesting. That said, I do expect players to make competent characters. i.e. If your character is a mechanic then I expect them to be a decent mechanic. They don't have to be the best mechanic in the world, but they should be able to effectively repair the ship when its damaged. (Though I'll note that one player made an incompetent character for a campaign of mine and it was one of the most memorable and favored PC ever. So this isn't a hard and fast rule.)
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
As a DM, I find that I can easiest consistently challenge the whole party when all of them are in the same rough neighborhood of power. And it really doesn't matter how optimized or not the group is. If one of the character is either a lot more powerful or a lot weaker, it is more difficult for me to give everyone satisfying group scenes in terms of spotlight and feeling accomplishment and that they are carrying their weight. I can still balance spotlight in other scenes that focus on specific character, but the group scenes are harder to make satisfying for all of my players on a consistent basis.
 

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