D&D 5E I played a game of Classic D&D.

Sacrosanct

Legend
I think Prestige Classes were definitely the biggest promoter of 'Builds', since you HAD to meet certain requirements to even take many prestige classes. But it wasn't an original idea. You used to have to earn your way into Bard or Paladin.

1e bard, yes, but not paladin. All you had to do was have a 17 CHA. There was no planning our building for a paladin. And the bard clearly was a Frankenstein afterthought. One reason why it was at the very end of the PHB and not with the rest of the classes. I don't think I even knew anyone who played a bard in 1e, and that covers 1e being my favorite edition from 1981 to 2012. Although in fairness, I did see a bard when 2e came out and it was it's own class from the get go. But I don't recall anyone every playing a 1e bard.
 

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Sacrosanct

Legend
If I had to trace it back, I would go to 2e and the explosion of "Complete X" books for all of the classes.

That would be the starting point. IMO.

Even then though, you didn't preplan the build advancement. You just picked a kit that sounded cool and ran with it from level 1. Maybe with Skills and Powers, but I don't know many people that actually played with those lol.
 

KarinsDad

Adventurer
No. See, here youre just throwing around terms again. Fudging, metagaming. Etc. Specificity is the soul of narrative, and agreed-upon terms are necessary for communication!

Fine. You tell me what terms I should use to get across the ideas that I already got across with examples. You seem to be nitpicking terminology, but no worries. You pick the terminology.

The DM is not a participant in the game, in the same sense that a soccer referee is not a participant in the game, even though they affect the outcome. The DM sets up the game, runs the game, and adjudicates the game (as well as "running" the other parts of the game) but, absent a "DM PC/NPC" (don't do that), isn't a player- isn't a participant- in the actual game.

If you say so.

The player runs one character and adjusts his decisions to what else is going on around him in the game world.

The DM runs many characters and adjusts his decisions to what else is going on around him in the game world.

I fail to see a major distinction.
 

nightwind1

Explorer
Back then (my high school years, 1980+), the game did not really support what I like to do now: find some clever use of the equipment in my backpack.
Of course it did. In fact, it supported it better than any current edition does. You just have to figure out what to do with it, and have a DM that's not a dick.
 

iserith

Magic Wordsmith
I did start off that post with "I don't necessarily think that it is unfair". I wasn't trying to answer the question I quoted. I was trying to show that the term "unfair" was the wrong one to illustrate the issue. It's not unfair IMO.

Okay. I agree it's not necessarily unfair. It can be made unfair, but there's more to it than setting the difficulty at "almost impossible." Such as say, hitting the PCs with an "almost impossible" challenge without any sort of warning such that they can't make an informed decision to potentially avoid an undesirable fate.
 


GameOgre

Adventurer
After having some time to think it over the Classic game and the 5E games are both totally different types of games.

The 5E game is all about character development and the ongoing story. These are are characters and they are involved with this epic long story and lets play and see how it turns out! A great game! It really goes places and you can build a Epic character.

The Classic game was more on the ground almost survival type of game where the story was whatever happened at your game table. Even the DM seemed to only have a little say so here as one little goblin fight turned into a four hour farmhouse siege ending with a Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid confrontation at the front to buy the guys breaking out the back time to get away.(They did get away). We died proudly and and took as many of them out on our way, as we could.

It will be a long long time before I forget that last stand just Epic in its smallness.

Both of those games are great! Nothing wrong with either one it's just I have been playing only one type for years now so the other looks brighter.
 

KarinsDad

Adventurer
Okay. I agree it's not necessarily unfair. It can be made unfair, but there's more to it than setting the difficulty at "almost impossible." Such as say, hitting the PCs with an "almost impossible" challenge without any sort of warning such that they can't make an informed decision to potentially avoid an undesirable fate.

The issue then becomes, what happens if their informed decision is to go ahead anyway? That's where the "unfairness" might come in for some players.

It's not really an informed decision if the outcome is a TPK if they decide in the opposite direction that the DM expected them to. In other words, by giving them the warning, the DM is trying to remove his own culpability in presenting the "almost impossible" challenge by pushing the responsibility of it to the decision making of the players and ignoring the fact that he is the one who created the situation in the first place.

He is still partially responsible for the TPK. And if he gives warnings that more or less force the players to abandon the idea of going to that encounter, he isn't REALLY giving them a decision. He's kind of railroading the adventure away from that encounter under the fake disguise of allowing the players to decide. Too strong of a warning, the players aren't really getting to decide. Too weak of a warning (or no warning at all), and the DM is setting the group up for a potential TPK.
 

KarinsDad

Adventurer
Well, I started by making the simple point that you shouldn't say that the DM is "metagaming," because that would be contentious. So ...

My only other point is that you shouldn't conflate generally accepted ideas of fudging (changing the dice behind a screen) with less acceptable ones (a DM that is trying to punish players for specific behavior).

And yet you still have not given me terminology that is applicable to that discussion.

And yes, shy of a better term, metagaming (or fudging) is as good as any given that you will not give me one that gets the point across.

Yeah ... if you can't see any major distinction between the DM and the players, then I think proper terminology won't help when it comes to communication.

I see a major distinction between the DM and players. I just know for a fact that the DM is more of a participant in the outcome than any single player is.

It's a shared story. It's not all player driven. The DM is the most major participant who influences the game more than any other player at the table.

He too is a player, he just doesn't run a PC. He's not just a referee like your soccer example.
 

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