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General If you could put D&D into any other non middle ages genre, what would it be?

MonkeezOnFire

Adventurer
I'm currently running a short series play testing rules to set D&D 5e in a cyberpunk + biopunk setting called Gene Funk 2090. I've only run 1 session of it so far but it's been fun to explore the character options. I'm most excited for the much expanded equipment options. Between cybernetic and biotic enhancements, huge weapon tables, vehicles and gadgets there's tons of stuff to spend money on.
 

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Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
So can we please, please stop with this "guns need to be way more lethal than swords or it's not realistic" nonsense? The mechanics of D&D are just fine for emulating a heroic wild west genre. To argue otherwise is to hold a double standard of lethality for swords vs guns, and to ironically ignore what you're claiming you need to have: reality

I agree ... getting your head chopped off by a claymore is probably going to hurt just as much if not more than being shot with a Colt .45.

It's only related to the topic in that if you're talking a genre that has guns, what system would you implement so that people would take guns in the first place if they just do the same damage as bows but are really loud? Unless you're Jack Churchill, of course. Historically it was because they were easier to train people to use and as we approach the modern era (or future) have a higher rate of fire. So you can either give guns some mechanical advantage, remove proficiency for bows without special training or just hand-wave and say "people use guns".

Then there's the issue of support for melee tank type characters if you care to support that play style. If you assume armor is effective against bullets (not that big of a stretch), is there still room for melee types?

So those are the issues I ponder when thinking of running a campaign higher on the tech tree than typical "medieval fantasy" campaigns.
 

For Wild West you would want to upgrade the effectiveness of fists and improvised weapons in melee.

The thing to focus on is you are not trying to simulate reality (D&D doesn't do that in any setting), you are trying to create something that is fun to play whilst emulating a fiction genre.
 

CapnZapp

Legend
The point is, hp are stupid irrespective of if you are fighting with a gun or a hat pin. What matters is where the hit happens, not the nature of the weapon.

People of have gotten used to the idea of hp with traditional D&D weapons through playing D&D and knock-off video games, but that doesn't make it any less unrealistic than using hp for firearms or sci fi weapons.
Yes, I'm telling you expectations trump "realism".

My whole point is that the genre sets expectations that impacts your damage model of choice.
 

CapnZapp

Legend
Most people are level 1 commoners with 4 HP. How many hits with any D&D weapon do you expect them to survive? As far as who's level 12, well obviously they're the protagonists of an action movie that have Hollywood magical plot armor. Or you justify it exactly the same way you justify getting hit in the face with a club by an hill giant a dozen times and walking away. You don't. ;)

Any system that uses HP is fundamentally flawed and doesn't make a lot of sense if you think about it. I don't care if it's D&D or the vast majority of video games I've ever played. But how many times in action movies or TV do the heroes get shot but it's "just a flesh wound" that they bandage up and ignore 5 minute later.
Okay.

Meanwhile, we're discussing what settings to expand D&D to. Firearm-centric settings encounter trouble that melee-centric settings don't.

You can't say one damage model is more flawed than the other. The only flaw is using one that is a mismatch to the expectations of the setting's genre.
 

Okay.

Meanwhile, we're discussing what settings to expand D&D to. Firearm-centric settings encounter trouble that melee-centric settings don't.


No, they don't.

You can't say one damage model is more flawed than the other.

No one is saying that.

Hp is equally flawed, for the purpose of simulation, no matter what setting you use it in, but equally good, for the purpose of fun, on matter what setting you use it in.
 

CapnZapp

Legend
I think you're conflating gritty with Western.
Not really, since...
Perhaps gritty is the default assumed tone for a Western
Nailed it in one!

my point is that as long as one establishes that that's not the intended tone of the campaign, there's no issue.
Yes.

This discussion, though, started when someone yelled "mockery".

My entire point is that unless you do *something*, whether to change the damage model (ie not use D&D) or the expectations, that's pretty much what you're gonna hear...
 

CapnZapp

Legend
So can we please, please stop with this "guns need to be way more lethal than swords or it's not realistic" nonsense?
Of course I've made about a dozen posts offering a different perspective:

That it's *not* about myths and believing guns are more lethal.

But instead about genre, and whether your setting is melee-centric or ranged.

If you offer firearms that increases people's expectations of lethal attacks.

If you focus on swords, that decreases people's expectations.

Of course you can still *manage* those expectations. Of course you can still use D&D!
 

Fenris-77

Small God of the Dozens
Supporter
Instead of "fundamentally flawed" how about "fundamentally over-simplifies damage" or "fundamentally unrealistic". I'm perfectly okay with HP in whatever game I'm playing as long as it's appropriate. Games have to make all sorts of compromises for the sake of fun and ease of play.
I don't even think it's over-simplified. It's a very particular approach to damage that has a lot of built in plot armor and very much represents the kinds of stories that inspired D&D in the first place. It's very pulpy, and it makes for very durable heroes. Is that super-realistic? Good heavens no, but it was never supposed to be. Lots of other systems have more 'realistic' damage systems. Even the HP system as written can be massaged in a number of more 'realistic' directions for a DM so inclined. However, that fact that the HP system as written ins't a hyper-realistic model of vaguely medieval combat damage isn't a flaw, it's a design choice, a design choice people can agree with or, and use or not.
 

Sacrosanct

Legend
If you offer firearms that increases people's expectations of lethal attacks.

If you focus on swords, that decreases people's expectations.
!

And I'm saying this is wrong. It shouldn't do that, and for a lot of people, it doesn't. That's exactly the myth I'm talking about. The idea that what you're arguing is somehow true or accurate. It seems to me to be a lot of cognitive dissonance for one to argue that they make guns more lethal for "realism", when what's actually realistic doesn't support that.
 

Sacrosanct

Legend
I don't even think it's over-simplified. It's a very particular approach to damage that has a lot of built in plot armor and very much represents the kinds of stories that inspired D&D in the first place. It's very pulpy, and it makes for very durable heroes. Is that super-realistic? Good heavens no, but it was never supposed to be. Lots of other systems have more 'realistic' damage systems. Even the HP system as written can be massaged in a number of more 'realistic' directions for a DM so inclined. However, that fact that the HP system as written ins't a hyper-realistic model of vaguely medieval combat damage isn't a flaw, it's a design choice, a design choice people can agree with or, and use or not.

People have been trying to make the HP system more realistic since the very beginning, with an article in Dragon about once a year. Introduce pain mechanics! Introduce lingering effects!

None of those ever stuck or even took a foothold. I think there's a reason for that.
 

If you offer firearms that increases people's expectations of lethal attacks.

If you focus on swords, that decreases people's expectations.
Rubbish. In Game of Thrones swords are extremely lethal. e.g. In series 1 a character is wounded by a single spear thrust in the leg and limps for the rest of the series (until it is cured by amputation, at the neck).

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, the Lone Ranger faces the Black Hat gang in a hail of hundreds of bullets.

It's tone, not genre, that determines the lethality of the setting.
 

ART!

Adventurer
I've always thought 4E would by far be the best structure of any edition from which to build a supers game.

The at-will, encounter, and daily powers structure suits how powers work dramatically in comics to a T.
 

Derren

Hero
However, that fact that the HP system as written ins't a hyper-realistic model of vaguely medieval combat damage isn't a flaw, it's a design choice, a design choice people can agree with or, and use or not.

Yes, and also a choice which makes D&D unsuitable for any setting with primarily ranged weapons, simply because D&D is written to support melee. Unless you play at 1st level or have super optimized characters it is impossible to kill enemies from range before they reach you and go into melee because of the short ranges and HP pool.

Just imagine another common western scenario, the wagon fort surrounded by native americans. In D&D western they would have no trouble to rush the people inside the forth with melee weapons, even if that takes 1-2 rounds and the entire scene would devolve into some strange gun-fu close combat shooting with the cowboys running circles inside the fort to shoot and the natives charging every round to hit them with tomahawks (*play yakety sax*).
 

Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
I don't even think it's over-simplified. It's a very particular approach to damage that has a lot of built in plot armor and very much represents the kinds of stories that inspired D&D in the first place. It's very pulpy, and it makes for very durable heroes. Is that super-realistic? Good heavens no, but it was never supposed to be. Lots of other systems have more 'realistic' damage systems. Even the HP system as written can be massaged in a number of more 'realistic' directions for a DM so inclined. However, that fact that the HP system as written ins't a hyper-realistic model of vaguely medieval combat damage isn't a flaw, it's a design choice, a design choice people can agree with or, and use or not.

Anything remotely approaching reality would include disabilities, hindrances, bleeding out, infections, etc. We don't include those in many styles of games because it wouldn't be fun.

Don't get me wrong. I enjoy D&D. For all it's flaws, HP works. I just think that many things have to be vastly simplified to work as a game. Whether that's HP or armor or weapons or ease of recovery or the turn based system.
 

Sacrosanct

Legend
Yes, and also a choice which makes D&D unsuitable for any setting with primarily ranged weapons, simply because D&D is written to support melee. Unless you play at 1st level or have super optimized characters it is impossible to kill enemies from range before they reach you and go into melee because of the short ranges and HP pool.

Just imagine another common western scenario, the wagon fort surrounded by native americans. In D&D western they would have no trouble to rush the people inside the forth with melee weapons, even if that takes 1-2 rounds and the entire scene would devolve into some strange gun-fu close combat shooting with the cowboys running circles inside the fort to shoot and the natives charging every round to hit them with tomahawks (*play yakety sax*).

If that's the standard you're using (kill the enemy quickly before they close in), then D&D sucks at melee combat and can't capture historical melee combat as well. Heck, even heroic movie melee combat. Look at something like LotR with how fast they mow through orcs. That's not possible in D&D. Or historical combat where a single weapon strike took out an enemy soldier.

Goes back to my double standard. Implying D&D works good for melee but not ranged when you're holding a different set of standards to each. D&D works the same for melee and ranged. It's just that with one, you're willing to have suspense of disbelief, but not the other.
 

Fanaelialae

Legend
If that's the standard you're using (kill the enemy quickly before they close in), then D&D sucks at melee combat and can't capture historical melee combat as well. Heck, even heroic movie melee combat. Look at something like LotR with how fast they mow through orcs. That's not possible in D&D. Or historical combat where a single weapon strike took out an enemy soldier.

Goes back to my double standard. Implying D&D works good for melee but not ranged when you're holding a different set of standards to each. D&D works the same for melee and ranged. It's just that with one, you're willing to have suspense of disbelief, but not the other.

Actually, while 5e chose not to carry it over from 4e, D&D can do this. Just implement the concept of minions and you're good to go.
 

Saelorn

Hero
In D&D, when a level 8 Fighter is attacked by a few goblins with shortswords, their effects are akin to being shot by nerf guns, that is to say, they're an inconvenience but hardly fatal.

Does anyone consider this a "mockery of shortswords"?
I do, and it's the primary reason why I can't play 5E unless something has been done to address the healing rules.

When a goblin stabs you for 5 damage out of your 80hp, that's perfectly fine with me, because you're a mighty hero and you're wearing armor. Most armor is pretty good about dulling the impact of a sword. I can buy that it takes 16 hits before you've been battered into submission.

The issue is when you wake up in the morning, and the wounds which would have killed a lesser mortal have vanished entirely. That is making a mockery of the weapon.
 

Saelorn

Hero
If we're talking real world analogs, how about "Mythic Ancient World." The basic idea would be using creative license to combine various high points into Antiquity into one phase: Egypt, Babylon, Greece, Indus Valley, China, Norte Chico, all at a high point of civilization. Then you pepper in a mythic variety, so that demi-gods and heroes walk the land...so not as much Golden Age Greece as pre-Homeric "Age of Heroes" Greece.
Yes, I am also a fan of Xena.

* And Asterix.
 
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Fenris-77

Small God of the Dozens
Supporter
D&D and firearms work fine until you circle back around to realistic damage. Most heroes in most action movies have a very D&D relationship with firearms. The bad guys don't, but that fits pretty well into D&D too. What D&D doesn't really do, not when you follow CR system anyway, and previous versions of the same, is deal with the concept of minions or henchmen, at least from a one-punch one-kill cinematic standpoint anyway. D&D can do that, but it takes an alternative approach to encounter design.

Put simply, if you want to play in a system where a single gunshot (or equivalent) can kill a player character, then D&D isn't the system for you. Personally, I don't really want to play in a system where a single common attack could ace my character at pretty much any time. That might be to some people's taste, and that's fine, but I like D&D for what it does going in the opposite direction. YMMV.
 

Halloween Horror For 5E

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