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D&D 5E Name a technique or design choice that your group enjoys, but that is generally unpopular.

Fauchard1520

Explorer
If you've dwelt long in the gaming forums strewn across the web, you've no doubt heard phrases like these: “There’s no wrong way to game,” or, “If you’re having fun, you’re doing it right.” That can get a bit reductive, but I do think it's a generally useful reminder. Every group is unique, and what works at one table won’t necessarily work at another. For my money, that’s a healthy thing to keep in mind.

When you move beyond your familiar home table, whether it’s at a gaming con, with a new group, or in a forum, it’s important to put your own preconceptions on hold. Before you offer up advice to your fellow gamers, remember that every one of them comes paired with a unique set of preferences. That means that checking your own personal version of “the right way to game” at the door is Step 1 in talking shop with your fellow dungeon delvers.

So in the spirit of cultural exchange, what do you say we compare our differences? Name a technique or design choice that your group enjoys, but that is generally unpopular. Do you love no-holds-barred PVP? Perhaps you think an adversarial GM can be a fun challenge. Maybe you enjoy alignment-mismatched parties, tracking encumbrance, or implementing crit fails. Let's hear all about your best loved (but least popular) elements!

(Comic for illustrative purposes.)
 

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DND_Reborn

Legend
Action-based initiative (called Cinematic Initiative by myself), where turns are micro-managed into separate actions.
Tracking encumbrance and supplies
Critical fumbles/failures
Rolling 2d10 instead of d20 for all rolls except initiative
Very restricted races
Nerfed casting
Lower HPs
Higher ACs
and on and on and on...
(and alignment :) )

I don't know how much those are unpopular or not, but most probably are. ;)
 
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GreyLord

Legend
Creating our own classes and sometimes creating our own races.

The most it was ever codified was in 2e. 3e had some general ideas but never really got into how to do it.

4e had nothing on it, but it was rather easy to adjust and do.

5e actually starts giving some guidelines (not that anyone would see it as such) with the racial adjustments in Tasha's.

However, I find very few actually go all out and create their own races or classes on their own.
 


Lyxen

Great Old One
Really not caring about the RAW except as guidelines, and not creating any house rules, just local rulings... :p
 




King Babar

God Learner
I don't know if it's necessarily unpopular or not, but I've been using Side Initiative for my current campaign. After 13 sessions I haven't noticed any major downsides and combat feels like it moves a faster.
 


toucanbuzz

Legend
I like AD&D monsters more than 5E. I like the idea of magic resistance, special weapon immunities, some form of no-save undead drain, fiends with spells and teleports, and so on because they made taking out these foes more like a puzzle than a slug-fest. But suggest the idea a caster might contribute nothing with their cantrip damage spells in a combat and you'll be in for a couple pages of negativity.

The World Isn't Fair. Kinda falls in line with the above (maybe your Eldritch blast won't win the day) and I run my worlds gritty with the idea that a diverse group with diverse skills willing to think outside the box have better chances of conquering things that don't seem fair.

Declaring Actions, turn by turn, initiative. When posting about this system years ago, you'd think I'd slapped people's mothers for simply mentioning the idea it could work. After 5 years, our home-version works just dandy.

Slot-based encumbrance. Same thing, less vitriol.

Races are unique and distinct and some are lame and not in my game. I'm okay with your table playing your way, but if you start a topic on why an elf adopted by a dwarven family should get dwarven resilience and a human should get darkvision if they want, or that everyone should get to play anything they want ("have it your way"), it tends to get negative quick.

I don't use death saves. Falls along the lines of "you're making D&D too complicated" without the "slapped your mother" feeling.
 


S'mon

Legend
I run 5e with a lot of magic items - does that count?

My group got pretty frustrated with Princes of the Apocalypse's lack of loot, so now I aim to have plenty of treasure, and item crafting.

I currently use RAW XP, and my Faerun Adventures game uses individual XP with new PCs coming in at only half the level of the current highest level PC. I get the impression most groups don't use XP and most have every PC the same level.
 

Jacob Lewis

Ye Olde GM
My last group started using Foundry VTT at the table using our laptops. It worked really well eliminating the need for battlemaps, minis, even character sheets. More room for chips and coffee!!

And then my hard drive crashed. :(
 



aco175

Legend
Flanking. I think I liked it better in 4e, but kept it in 5e and the world did not end.

We did get rid of XP advancement if that helps save some cred.
 

We used to play action said, action done. Once you said something or declared an action it was done, like taking your hand off a chess piece once moved. It kept people attentive and in character, cut down on the jokes and made players and characters accountable for their words and actions. There "was no wait I changed my mind I want to do this instead...", "I didn't mean to shoot that lightning bolt there" or "Just kidding, I didn't really just tell the King of Cormyr to go screw himself". There were no take backs. It was fun and worked well for that particular group but admittedly not how I'd prefer to play these days and I'd imagine it would prove unpopular for a good majority of group.
Nothing in the multiverse will prevent a druid from wearing a metal armor*
I didnt even realize that Druids couldnt wear metal armor still in 5E until someone mentioned it in a thread not long ago. But Druids are just Grateful Dead loving hippies anyhow and no one in our game ever plays them. Theyre the Aquamen of D&D. Druid, go water your garden Im going to go kill an ogre.
I like AD&D monsters more than 5E. I like the idea of magic resistance, special weapon immunities, some form of no-save undead drain, fiends with spells and teleports, and so on because they made taking out these foes more like a puzzle than a slug-fest. But suggest the idea a caster might contribute nothing with their cantrip damage spells in a combat and you'll be in for a couple pages of negativity.

The World Isn't Fair. Kinda falls in line with the above (maybe your Eldritch blast won't win the day) and I run my worlds gritty with the idea that a diverse group with diverse skills willing to think outside the box have better chances of conquering things that don't seem fair.

Declaring Actions, turn by turn, initiative. When posting about this system years ago, you'd think I'd slapped people's mothers for simply mentioning the idea it could work. After 5 years, our home-version works just dandy.
All good stuff I concur. AD&D monsters are way better, more flavor text, more deadly I think. The world isnt fair. Damn right, nor should it be. If players are so willing to kill whatever they want and take their stuff, push lowly townsfolk NPCs around and feel they can do whatever they want with impunity so should everyone else.
I have really been considering modifying initiative in our game to more of the way 2E was. I'd have to give it some thought first though. I like the thought of rolling every round but not sure its worth the extra time.
 

toucanbuzz

Legend
I like the thought of rolling every round but not sure its worth the extra time.
Don't want to derail the topic by getting into alternative systems, but I use a version where players pick a die (d4, d6, d8, d10) based off their declared action for the round (e.g. a light weapon is d4, most other weapons are d8, most spells are d10, and generic is d6). Dexterity is removed from the equation. It now moves faster, even with a roll every round, than in my d20 days of initiative.
 

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