We use death at 0 bloodied hit points (wound points), which is separate pool (and heal very slowly). It has had a similar effect to what your are looking for my group. They are very cautious of combat.
Er...why not? It's far more concrete than someone sayng "Well, going by what I've seen I think the death rate for warriors is x but the death rate for casters is y".
Er...isn't that what investment in a story is - something of non-material value that has value only for itself?Okay. For examples 1+2 though, you're talking non-material value, things valued for themselves, not their utility.
A purpose which I support in principle; the devil is clearly in the details of how this purpose might best be accomplished.The given purpose for the proposed rules is to make survival motives categorically outweigh everything else.
A few things here:Chosen for being in-thread, not for quality. Better but not seen in-thread: Buffing allies. Even buffing max-level 5e Fighters is weak. Consider elemental weapon, a stock "Wizard makes Fighter better" spell. Even over two rounds with Action Surge both times, that's only (hit rate)x(16d4) = (hit rate)x20 bonus damage. With a generous 70% hit rate, it's only 28 damage. One enemy hit by fireball (same level) takes 28 damage up front. At 2nd level, scorching ray's 2d6 with 3 hits. Even at a rather bad 50% hit rate, it does almost as much damage in one round (10.5 vs 14) as elemental weapon does with zero other resources invested.
Buffing < directly solving problems. Treantmonk's (in?)famous "God Wizard" guides expressly note that you should keep these buff spells, not because they're good, but because they keep the "BSF" (Big Stupid Fighter) from feeling left out of the game.
Intentionally so, as true-loss conditions (or, put another way, mechanical loss conditions) apply reasonably equally across most if not all tables: a character death at my table has much the same effect as a character death at most other tables, etc. Therefore, they serve as a useful point of comparison.I took mind-loss mostly out because that wigs out one of my players (long story, not mine to tell.) Haven't considered limb loss, just...hasn't come up? I'm not opposed (love "silverhand" stuff!), it just hasn't followed from the fiction thus far. Party's adventures tend toward a political or social edge rather than pure combat.
Major item loss has happened. Most losses involve allies, resources, reputation, or especially morals. Someone faces an agonizing choice/difficulty every 3-4 months minimum. Giving in to dark temptation, revealing terrible secrets, debts to hated enemies, violating your own principles to succeed. Facing horrors that shake the players deeply (a recent big one there). Giving up chances for answers or power etc. to do the right/needed thing. No physical scars, but still losses.
In part, it seems you define "true-loss condition" in a narrow, purely material way.
It's a while since I looked at my 4e books but I seem to recall it offered (almost?) unlimited multiclassing, chooseable feats, and additive levels. Boom - by 4th level I've got an F-1 C-1 W-1 R-1 jack of all trades who can do anything, even if not as well as some of his more specialized friends.Even 4e? Few are so willing to give it a break on that front! Most complain bitterly "you can't be a Fighter who does damage" (even though you totally can.) IMO, niche protection requires both roles that aren't shared (without major effort) and chars who can't do everything.*
In 0e that was true, I forgot Thief was a later addition. But fairly early in 1e - I think it's even in the Dragon issue whose look-back is currently on the site's front page - Gygax went on record as saying non-Thieves simply couldn't do that stuff. (it's bollocks, mind, but that was the mindset). Personally, I have it that anyone can try (often at rather poor odds!) to sneak or hide or listen at doors or even pick a pocket, but specialized stuff such as removing/disarming traps or picking locks does require a trained professional.Plus, are you sure that the sneaky stuff was hard Thief-only? Because people have usually told me that that is a misconception or even outright falsehood, that the old Thief skills were meant only to offer a guarantee of certain competencies, which anyone could attempt but would usually be much less good at (e.g. the difference between "you have a 55% chance to unlock locks" vs "if you roll 6 on a d6, you can unlock it.")
Clerics can take hits to a point but after very low level become kinda crap at giving them out. I know this from currently-ongoing experience, I'm playing a C-12 right now and while his AC is great his damage-dealing is - well, let's just say his usual tactic is just to hang on and soak attacks for long enough that a real Fighter can get there and bail him out. (in 4e terms he'd be a full-on Defender, at least in playstyle)Conversely, "chars who can't do everything" forbids old-school Clerics, because Clerics can take and deal hits very nearly as good as the Fighter, dish out spell damage almost as good as the Wizard, and do healing that no one else can provide.
This is why I'm such a fan of Game of Thrones and Lord of the Rings. They get it. The world is, with some very few exceptions, an ugly place - far uglier and way less forgiving than our modern-day real world - and all we're trying to do is survive in it.Then it is on you to defend why this specific, ugly, unpleasant part of reality should be part of it. It seems you agree realism is but one tool in the toolbox; a strong one, but not the only or even the best, valued because it makes things relatable/sharable/etc. Other concerns exist besides how relatable/shareable the fiction is. If realism can be piecemeal (include realistic things A, B, C, but not X, Y, Z) and is instrumentally valuable rather than intrinsically valuable (valuable because it adds other qualities, not because realism itself is inherently needed), then responding to "that's an ugly, unpleasant thing I don't want in my game" with "well it's realistic!" is a total non sequitur. You need to defend why this element ought to be included despite the stated instrumental faults, and why other alternative sources of realism (perhaps socioeconomic class divides or anatomical realism) could not be employed to make up the difference.
Thing is, I really don't care whether or not the PCs are (or become) murderhobos or anarchists or any of the rest of that stuff - other than the in-game "deleterious consequences" piece, which also happens the only one of those pieces legitimately under my control as DM. There's some limits around what a character can be in terms of species, class, etc.; but once it's in play it's yours to play any way you want, preferably doing exactly and only what the character would do and following where that character leads; and if consequences arisign from those actions are warranted, they too will try to happen.If you want the players to not be murderhobos, to value their fellow PCs, to care about the world they're in, to treat laws and those who enforce them with respect (even if they dislike/oppose them), to recognize that there are serious and deleterious consequences for reckless and dangerous behavior, then you need to provide rules which reward the things you want players to do and punish the things you don't want them to do. When you do that, and especially if you can do it while also making it fun/cool/exciting/neat, you no longer need to worry about whether the players will play along. They'll do so enthusiastically, because the effective action is the one you desire them to take.
I would. It's complete, neutrally-gathered, organized numbers on a page, which makes it hard data; as opposed to best-memory guesswork or estimate, which isn't.Sure, but to me something you call "hard data" is not merely gathered in a non-transparent way which is essentially anecdotal and dependent entirely on the DMs involved and what sounds like a game system which isn't D&D, isn't specified, and maybe isn't publicly available at all, but some kind of home-built system?
It's organised data, but that doesn't make it "hard". Like, I gathered the DPR and kill data for an entire D&D 5E campaign one time, and even if I'd done it for, say, 10 or 20 campaigns, I wouldn't call that "hard data".
You (hypothetical) telling me a tale of there being a bunch of deaths in your game is anecdotal. You telling me there were 21 deaths over 97 sessions, and that you can show the records to back this up, is hard data.It's anecdotal, it's highly specific, it's non-transparent, and so on.
You may not believe this, but yes! I did this a while back as I was curious if the numbers could tell me which monsters or foes were in general the biggest threats and-or whether non-monster threats were a big deal; they did tell me, and I admit the results were somewhat surprising*.Like, for example, does your data set include "cause of death" in every single case? Does say whether they were in combat, to traps, to disease, to poison, to falling, to judicial execution?
Manually logged. The game logs are online; if you really wanted to* you could plow through them and glean much of this data for yourself: certainly frequency by adventure, by class, and by species for death, level loss, petrification, and limb loss. By-session would be harder as session numbers are only shown in the log of one major game out of six, but I-as-DM have that info on paper; ditto for cause of death, which isn't always obvious in the online logs (particularly those from the early days) but is usually noted on paper here.Or does it just include who got killed and so on? Is it manually logged?
You're giving a much tighter definition to "hard data" than I am. To me, hard data is anything both a) verifiable and b) written down with at least a shred of organization behind it.Is from a VTT? Which VTT if so? Hell we don't even know the mechanics by which characters get downed/killed in your system. And even with 5E, anyone playing at home is going to massively bias things by what they're running, group size, group composition, preferred encounter difficulties and so on - so we need all that data as well to consider it in any way "serious data", let alone hard, as inarguable.
Whcih is why I'm asking if other people have similar data for their games!
Hang on, I may have missed something: Do you mean they can choose the injury, and then a severity is applied to that injury?
I'm just looking into implementing the system in Rolemaster's 10 Million Ways to Die.