D&D General Lethality, AD&D, and 5e: Looking Back at the Deadliest Edition

nevin

Hero
EDIT......DEFinitely-----EDIT---Maybe i missed somethign but the Paladin was unable to keep the wealth. The Paladin as written would have simply given it to the ones who spend the money. They are the Spears or flaming swords of thier gods not the bankers. But I did just mix up two different threads. I lost track and thought i was posting about 1ed paladins. so in this context it would depend on thier god and thier mission. A paladin protecting the people might very well take the wealth and use it for thier purpose.
 

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Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
EDIT......DEFinitely-----EDIT---Maybe i missed somethign but the Paladin was unable to keep the wealth. The Paladin as written would have simply given it to the ones who spend the money. They are the Spears or flaming swords of thier gods not the bankers. But I did just mix up two different threads. I lost track and thought i was posting about 1ed paladins. so in this context it would depend on thier god and thier mission. A paladin protecting the people might very well take the wealth and use it for thier purpose.
Yes. They gave it away, but for balance reasons not religious ones as clerics could have as much wealth as they wanted. The rest is justification.
 

nevin

Hero
Yes. They gave it away, but for balance reasons not religious ones as clerics could have as much wealth as they wanted. The rest is justification.
True but if you are going historical or even mythical Clerics are typically the shepards of thier gods flock so they keep the sheep and the supplies..... How boring would it be if clerics couldn't get greedy and turn into villains:)
 


Thomas Shey

Legend
AD&D DMG p80. Item saving throws and damage types:

“2. Blow, Crushing: This assumes that the item is struck by a weighty falling object or a blow from an ogre's or giant's weapon, for example. Another example would be a (ceramic) flask of oil or a (crystal or glass) vial of holy water hurled against a hard surface or dropped from a height. A piece of cloth can be ripped or torn by a crushing blow.”

A crystal or vial has a 2-in-20 chance of surviving. Glass has a 1-in-20.

Note "item". It doesn't say anything about just being on a person hit by them. At best you could argue that might apply to armor.
 

Thomas Shey

Legend
Never minding paladins. If ten magic items is a hard limit, that does rather imply that other characters have more than ten.

Even outside of numbers, those tables were just not going to mean that only high level characters only had high level items. The only reason that was particularly likely by-the-book was because a lot of magic had crossed their hands over time, but there was nothing either mechanically or even by advice that prevented generating a +5 (adamantine) shield as something that popped up in an adventure for second level characters.
 

nevin

Hero
No. Obviously, I didn't address the root cause of the restriction in my post- just stating that it was more onerous than a 10-item restriction because it specified the specific items restricted.

That said, the reason for the restrictions was gamist. It was another example of Gygaxian gatekeeping- something that was very popular in early (TSR-era) D&D, but quickly lost favor.

The two ways to use Gygaxian gatekeeping were simple-
First, you would restrict something by making it hard to qualify for. While this had some basis in verisimilitude, it had the unfortunate effect of creating the whole, "In order to be awesome, you already have to be awesome!" An example of this is the heightened ability requirements of subclasses.

Second was the drawbacks. In order to get powerful abilities, there would be concomitant drawbacks. You want to play a Paladin? Great- but you have to apply all the "strictures"- magic items restrictions, wealth restrictions, hireling restrictions, alignment restrictions, and most importantly, association restrictions. You want to play a demi-human with abilities baked in? Great, hope you're not expecting to advance all the levels (or get raised if you're an elf). And so on.

I hate to break it to you, but the Church does not, in fact, have a magic item restriction. ;)
ok I really need to slow down reading long forum posts.. You are correct.
 

nevin

Hero
Even outside of numbers, those tables were just not going to mean that only high level characters only had high level items. The only reason that was particularly likely by-the-book was because a lot of magic had crossed their hands over time, but there was nothing either mechanically or even by advice that prevented generating a +5 (adamantine) shield as something that popped up in an adventure for second level characters.
of course. The game has always allowed the DM to modify, ignore and adjust on the fly without that it would just be a video game without the video. How lame would that be.
 

Oofta

Legend
Paladin restriction on number of items and wealth can have descriptive justifications added after the fact, that doesn't mean that the reason those limits were there were based on those justifications. Just like wizards couldn't wear armor, the restrictions were added for game balance reasons.
 

Thomas Shey

Legend
Finally, the reason most people call AD&D "low magic" has little to do with magic items, and everything to do with character abilities. Sure, there were a fair number of magic items (especially if you're into counting stats and simply sum up all of the ubiquitous +1 long and short swords in each module). But the reason it seems low magic compared to later editions is that it lacks cantrips and other character abilities that were constantly used as spells, and that while magic items (especially +1 and +2 items) were certainly ubiquitous, there was not an assumption of magic item shops to customize your character (the GP sale value was for sale by the characters only if they chose not to retain it).

While that might be a factor with some people, most of the time it comes up people are clearly talking about magic item presence, so I don't think your statement is, in general, true.
 

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