D&D General Haste: The (system) Shocking History of the Spell!

Orius

Legend
Well, I've been running the 2e combats like that since the party was about level 6 or 7, and they're pushing about level 11 now. Yes, the fighters are huge combat machines especially coupled with the tinkering I was doing weapon mastery from the Player's Option material. It doesn't really bother me. High level fighters are still mostly taking on a single opponent at a time, and these extra attacks mostly just speed things up a bit rather than slogging things out for a few extra rounds that aren't going to change anything significantly. One of the main problems behind the whole Linear Fighter Quadratic Wizard issue is that there's this school of thought about not making non-casters too powerful that gets too cautious and conservative and high level fighters and thieves are seen as boring compared to the clerics and wizards. So I don't sweat it if fighters start mowing down mooks. I'm more worried about the players getting restless because they're still just doing one-on-one combat like they've been doing since level one just with better numbers while the wizard gets some fun toys to play with.

OTOH, this is where domain play becomes important because the fighters really own that part of the game, but that's a whole different topic, and thieves by comparison don't get much there either.
 

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Orius

Legend
I found the combination of +1 attack bonus per level, weapon mastery, magic weapons, multiple attacks, two-weapon fighting, and ageless haste to make for utterly broken fighters once you're in the double figures of levels. A fighter needs to keep up with the mages but dealing 40 to 60 damage per round took it a little too far in my games. We changed to the BX attack progression, removed extra attacks due to specialisation, reinstated aging for haste after experimenting without it, and have found a sweet spot where high-level fighters are fearsome enough without being overpowered. Overall, I think it's the extra attacks per round and the rapidly scaling attack bonuses that are the real problem as opposed to the +2 or +3 damage from spec/mastery.


That may end up being a problem, but the biggest issue I've had so far was making the mistake of using critical hits in 2e. I've come to the conclusion that the game is definitely not balanced for it in anything prior to 3e since the hit points are so low. Hell, they might not be all that balanced in 3e either, but 3e is its own special collection of problems.
 

Well, I've been running the 2e combats like that since the party was about level 6 or 7, and they're pushing about level 11 now. Yes, the fighters are huge combat machines especially coupled with the tinkering I was doing weapon mastery from the Player's Option material. It doesn't really bother me. High level fighters are still mostly taking on a single opponent at a time, and these extra attacks mostly just speed things up a bit rather than slogging things out for a few extra rounds that aren't going to change anything significantly. One of the main problems behind the whole Linear Fighter Quadratic Wizard issue is that there's this school of thought about not making non-casters too powerful that gets too cautious and conservative and high level fighters and thieves are seen as boring compared to the clerics and wizards. So I don't sweat it if fighters start mowing down mooks. I'm more worried about the players getting restless because they're still just doing one-on-one combat like they've been doing since level one just with better numbers while the wizard gets some fun toys to play with.

OTOH, this is where domain play becomes important because the fighters really own that part of the game, but that's a whole different topic, and thieves by comparison don't get much there either.
That's a good point about it helping speed up combat :)

I definitely took it too far at one point, though. I was experimenting with allowing simultaneous backstabs if you attacked with two weapons at once and our high-level half-orc fighter thief with a girdle of giant strength teleported onto the back of a huge white dragon in G2 and delivered a twin backstab that killed it immediately. It was one of the most badass things I've seen and simultaneously a sign that I needed to reign things in a bit.

The half-orc in question rode the dragon's corpse several hundred feet to the ground, roaring his defiance, blades aloft, before the fall killed him. After he was raised, he commissioned a painting of the event for his bar :D :D :D
 

That may end up being a problem, but the biggest issue I've had so far was making the mistake of using critical hits in 2e. I've come to the conclusion that the game is definitely not balanced for it in anything prior to 3e since the hit points are so low. Hell, they might not be all that balanced in 3e either, but 3e is its own special collection of problems.
Ah yeah, we have max damage on a natural 20 but that's it :)
 

Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
Supporter
Well, I've been running the 2e combats like that since the party was about level 6 or 7, and they're pushing about level 11 now. Yes, the fighters are huge combat machines especially coupled with the tinkering I was doing weapon mastery from the Player's Option material.

On this-

I tend to post (unless otherwise noted) from a 1e perspective. And by 1e, I generally mean pre-UA. That isn't to say that 2e doesn't have some amazing stuff, it's just a preference.

I have previously made the point that every edition change was essentially foreshadowed by the late period of the prior edition-


That's the brief form. But I think that 2e started down the path in the core books, and then, with the splat books and especially with the player options, previewed a lot of the player-facing design ethos of 3e.

I have also discussed at length about how all of the TSR material, from OD&D through and including BECMI and late-stage 2e, are interoperable. But even with that in mind, there are substantial differences between, say, a fighter in OD&D and a fighter in late 2e using Player's Options.

These differences (not to mention variances between tables and use of 3PP and Dragon articles) makes it extremely hard to generalize.
 

Orius

Legend
No argument there, it's not too hard to see how a given edition influences the following edition as the earlier edition matures. Not everything is carried over of course, there are elements of UA that didn't make it into 2e, just as 3e was not a straight port of PO material.

Pre-3e material is all fairly compatible, and many of us who played BitD did mix stuff together. While I have no problem in conflating both 1e and 2e together as AD&D, I also realize that comparing early 1e material to late 2e material is going to have inevitable differences, if nothing else from an accumulation of 20 years of ideas.

And not only do different tables have different house rules, they have different tastes too.

Anyway, while I prefer a base of either 2e or 3e, I'm comfortable mixing ideas from multiple editions according to my tastes, and referred to my game as Bastard D&D. I've also commented on trying to find a Grand Unified Theory of D&D as well, but I suspect physicists will reach their theory long before I do.
 

Keldryn

Adventurer
I'm quite certain that in all of the years that I played AD&D (1e & 2e), I never once called for a system shock roll as DM or witnessed one as a player. It was just one of those many AD&D fiddly details that everyone dutifully wrote down on their character sheets, but never actually used in play.

Mostly, I think it's because we just forgot about it during play than a deliberate decision. We started with Basic/Expert/Companion D&D and when we moved on to AD&D, we mostly just kept playing the game the same way, but with AD&D races, classes, monsters, spells, and magic items. I do remember reading the 1e DMG section on Initiative when I was 12 and thinking that it was way too complicated and nonsensical, so I just stuck with how we did it in Basic. I suspect that I came to the same decision about a lot of the AD&D procedures and rules.

Looking back at the system shock mechanic now, I think that it's a very punitive and unfair attempt at balancing powerful spells. AD&D 1e had far too many "make a successful roll or die immediately" gotchas that weren't fun for anyone except adversarial and sadistic DMs. We ignored a whole lot of those.

But I don't remember anyone really abusing the Haste spell back in the day. 3rd level magic-user spells meant Fireball or Fly.
 


Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
Supporter
edited: oops, followed a link to an old thread and posted like it was current! where is the delete button?

It's actually not that old.

Necro'd threads are usually years (or even decades) old.

This thread is from this month! If you have something to add, add it!

If we are worrying about necro'd threads that were started this month I think we are doing something wrong. ;)
 

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