D&D (2024) No new OneDnD encumberance?

tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
Epic
So far that I can see OneDnD playtest has not touched the encumbrance system.

How would you like to see D&D 2024 handle encumbrance? What would you like to see?

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The problems with the current system are:

  • it is hard to track (having to count every ounce of weight)
  • your carrying capacity is so high that it doesn't matter until you carry lots of stiff (it even says so in the PHB!) - and than it doesn't even say, what happens when you carry to much (only the Variant Rules go into a little detail)
  • ans the only effects are negative
  • the rules don't explain how encumbrance interacts with stuff like Food and Water and other ressources, which means especially beginners only read that the rules actually don't have a lot effect.

So the existing rules are enforcing a lot of book keeping for little to no effect, and all the existing effects are negative.

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What I would like in my encumbrance rules?

  • Easy to keep track of.
  • more encumbrance states - in which the lightest one also gives a benefit. So positive and negative effects.
  • easy to enforce without player complaints so they keep track of food, water and other cunsumenables.
  • giving the Illusion of somewhat Realism (like not one size/slot for all items)
  • Benefits if you have no encumbrance

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Rules Variant I came across:

  • just use D&D beyond or Roll20 to count Pounds - that works when you use those and only use Items that are already in the VTT, if you give out lots of homebrew items or mundane items that are not in the system, it breaks down quickly.
  • the rule of cool - if you can explain how your character is carrying all the stuff without the other players starting to laugh it is fine.
  • slot based systems - most of which I find a little to simplifying (like strength score = number of items you can varry)

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So what kind of encumbrance systems would you prefer OneDND to adopt?
2024 should not continue the 2014 trend of building an encumbrance subsystem for people who just want to say "and we are ignoring it with a half baked secondary variant that is still pointless". Above all else I want encumbrance to impact gameplay choices. 5e has an encumbrance system designed to nullify any reason for it to exist along with an optional variant that will make players chaffe over the nerf while simply choosing options like powerful build to nullify the changes to gameplay that the GM was attempting to enact.

There are a lot of ttrpgs that deal with encumbrance in a (better) way that furthers various goals that are core to those systems, but I think older editions of d&d provide good examples of mechanics with visceral (and positive) impacts on play. Back in 3.x your base speed was set by the armor that you wore and various abilities would raise or lower that as appropriate, that was good for simplicity and it mattered for the way it meant that mounted combat could viscerally change how a character moved in combat. Also positive to 3.x was the split of light medium and heavy load that each had important meaning for different builds and that made being able to carry a lot matter because certain PCs wanted very much to carry very very little so choices mattered for everyone. That's not to say those were perfect or the best method, PF1&2 made some changes to those mechanics and the critical detail is that they still influence gameplay in ways that matter during normal play.
 

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While I think the encumbrance system should have something like "slots" (but not "inventory Tetris") in a video game inventory system, it's not something I see happening in the system revision. It's just going to be status quo.
 

Mistwell

Crusty Old Meatwad (he/him)
So far that I can see OneDnD playtest has not touched the encumbrance system.

How would you like to see D&D 2024 handle encumbrance? What would you like to see?
Over It Hello GIF by HBO Max


I mean, not completely hand wave it. If you find 2 million copper coins, you need more than your backpack to transport that out. But normal equipment? Hand waved.
 

M_Natas

Hero
2024 should not continue the 2014 trend of building an encumbrance subsystem for people who just want to say "and we are ignoring it with a half baked secondary variant that is still pointless". Above all else I want encumbrance to impact gameplay choices. 5e has an encumbrance system designed to nullify any reason for it to exist along with an optional variant that will make players chaffe over the nerf while simply choosing options like powerful build to nullify the changes to gameplay that the GM was attempting to enact.

There are a lot of ttrpgs that deal with encumbrance in a (better) way that furthers various goals that are core to those systems, but I think older editions of d&d provide good examples of mechanics with visceral (and positive) impacts on play. Back in 3.x your base speed was set by the armor that you wore and various abilities would raise or lower that as appropriate, that was good for simplicity and it mattered for the way it meant that mounted combat could viscerally change how a character moved in combat. Also positive to 3.x was the split of light medium and heavy load that each had important meaning for different builds and that made being able to carry a lot matter because certain PCs wanted very much to carry very very little so choices mattered for everyone. That's not to say those were perfect or the best method, PF1&2 made some changes to those mechanics and the critical detail is that they still influence gameplay in ways that matter during normal play.
So the first step could be to implement a light load, that gives a benefit to movement and maybe dex checks or something, a normal load, with no benefit or malus, a high load with a malus to movement and maybe dex checks and saving throws and an overload condition with movement speed and disadvantage on all rolls?

And than we adjust the classes to work with that - like a monk benefits from a light load. A fighter is not bothered by a heavy load in combat and so on ...

No matter if we use slots or weight.
 

Kobold Stew

Last Guy in the Airlock
Supporter
Encumbrance can add verisimilitude. but for it to be fun, the choices need to be meaningful to the players. So much of what's carried is tied to class choices, and so not meaningful (i.e. there are only downsides). (Current 5e encumbrance is not fun, and so is handwaved for the most part).

You don't want to penalize non-magical classes who need str for armor and (at least under the 5e variant) end up being able to carry less than low-str, less armored characters. Strong people should be able to carry more discretionary load.

One solution that I like is separating armor load from encumbrance. I think heavy armor should have a strength requirement, below which there are penalties for movement or whatever, but that armor should not be considered when calculating load carried: that's not saying armor doesn't weigh anything, but that the weight is distributed and accounted for by the STR req.

That then also eliminates part of the problem with small characters and what they carry: a high str small character makes the threshold for armor use, and there's still the option (for those that might want it) to adjust the carrying capacity of small (or large) characters.

I think a slot system does work best for other things, and I don't mind the thought that a small character has STR -2 slots, for example (if Medium characters have slots equal to their strength). However implemented, you can have a granularity that means choices are interesting.

Asking players to consider their food/water needs more carefully can also be fun, as long as trivial solutions such as Goodberry are not ubiquitous.
 

Clint_L

Hero
Over It Hello GIF by HBO Max


I mean, not completely hand wave it. If you find 2 million copper coins, you need more than your backpack to transport that out. But normal equipment? Hand waved.
Same. It doesn't add much to the kinds of stories we enjoy. Other folks enjoy more of a detailed, grim and gritty adventure and that's cool too.
 

tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
Epic
If you find 2 million copper coins, you need more than your backpack to transport that out. But normal equipment? Hand waved.
That's old school editions. 5e is designed so starting gear is good enough one to twentysnd a single magic weapon is maybe overkill but able to met all needs. If players find 2 million copper coins or even 'an uncountable mountain of mostly copper coins"in 5e there is no loss in saying "that's a pain.. oh well, let's go
" with every intention of letting it rot if the gm won't let them convert it to gold or platinum right there right now.
 

aco175

Legend
That's old school editions. 5e is designed so starting gear is good enough one to twentysnd a single magic weapon is maybe overkill but able to met all needs. If players find 2 million copper coins or even 'an uncountable mountain of mostly copper coins"in 5e there is no loss in saying "that's a pain.. oh well, let's go
" with every intention of letting it rot if the gm won't let them convert it to gold or platinum right there right now.
Since there is little to spend gold on in 5e, it will not matter much if they leave it. You can always sell maps to the location and collect that gold. I would likely just hire some merchants to collect it for 25% of the cut.
 

Horwath

Legend
Encumbrance can add verisimilitude. but for it to be fun, the choices need to be meaningful to the players. So much of what's carried is tied to class choices, and so not meaningful (i.e. there are only downsides). (Current 5e encumbrance is not fun, and so is handwaved for the most part).

You don't want to penalize non-magical classes who need str for armor and (at least under the 5e variant) end up being able to carry less than low-str, less armored characters. Strong people should be able to carry more discretionary load.

One solution that I like is separating armor load from encumbrance. I think heavy armor should have a strength requirement, below which there are penalties for movement or whatever, but that armor should not be considered when calculating load carried: that's not saying armor doesn't weigh anything, but that the weight is distributed and accounted for by the STR req.

That then also eliminates part of the problem with small characters and what they carry: a high str small character makes the threshold for armor use, and there's still the option (for those that might want it) to adjust the carrying capacity of small (or large) characters.

I think a slot system does work best for other things, and I don't mind the thought that a small character has STR -2 slots, for example (if Medium characters have slots equal to their strength). However implemented, you can have a granularity that means choices are interesting.

Asking players to consider their food/water needs more carefully can also be fun, as long as trivial solutions such as Goodberry are not ubiquitous.
honestly, all armor should have STR requirement.
If that is implemented, we can actually ditch armor proficiency categories.

Current "heavy" armor classes can get ability that their STR is counted 2 pts higher for armor use.
 

tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
Epic
Since there is little to spend gold on in 5e, it will not matter much if they leave it. You can always sell maps to the location and collect that gold. I would likely just hire some merchants to collect it for 25% of the cut.
Huh? Why should the GM annoy and troll their table like that?

Are you seriously suggesting that the GM erect an quest checkpoint style wall contingent on forcing the players to collect a deliberately unwieldily sum of coins in order to solve the problem of the bad design on carry capacity when it is compounded with bad design in the many other places involved with lack of PC needs?
 

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