One could make a pretty good argument that 2e could easily handle a near-zero-combat political intrigue campaign in any of its settings but particularly in Birthright.But seriously: it is possible to play a campaign that is extremely light on elements of adventure and danger in D&D, but there is no edition that makes this a particularly good choice.
I think you're missing the point a bit. Nobody is saying that designing decent characters should be difficult, at least from what I've seen. But - and it's a big but - it should be *possible* to design (or get handed by your dice) a weak character if that's what you really want...and from what I can tell 4e made this a tough task.But if the idea that D&D should make it easy to develop characters who are good at what typically happens in a D&D adventure is strange to folks, I have to wonder if this isn't arguing for the sake of a hypothetical point that really doesn't occur.
I've seen it attempted - not with those specific adventures, mind you, but I once saw a player in a 1e game try to play a truly pacifist Cleric. The DM supported it by giving it ExP for when it avoided combat or prevented bloodshed; the character lasted two or theee adventures before something killed it, and the concept worked out OK except the rest of the players were a bloodthirsty lot who liked to roll dice.Are you going to play through Against the Giants, the Caves of Chaos, the Temple of Elemental Evil with a character who doesn't have anything to do in combat? Really?
Why not? If they follow through on this three-pillars idea it should in theory be possible to play mostly if not entirely inside the two pillars that are not combat.And should the game really support that kind of play? Really?
Lan-"pacifist D&D isn't my cup of tea but that's no reason not to support it"-efan