D&D 5E No One Plays High Level?

ECMO3

Hero
I guess you guys never used all the splat books, because you keep singling out the few low level feats instead of all of the good ones for some reason.

Ok what is a good feat my 7th level fighter with can take to be great at hiding no later than 8th level if he has invested zero points to date.

You claim I can do that, now tell me how!

If I can't do it at 8th level (and I already know I can't) tell me the process to make myself great at this and how many levels it is going to take.

All I know is that I can only achieve about 5% of the concepts in 5e that I could in 3e. At least only 5% without having to kludge something that really doesn't work because it only kindsa, sorta works if I squint sideways.

And I know I can't achieve even 5% of the concepts I can acheive in 5E in a .

You have already said on an earlier thread you pick a race that compliments your class, so you have already writeen off a bunch of concepts right there.

What other skills? Fighters didn't do skills really.

EXACTLY! Can do that concept.... at least not well.

And you can take the Open Minded feat to immediately gain 5 skill points if you want.

So that is 5 points halved to invest in a cross-class skill, giving me actually 2 extra (and one left over). I take that feat, invest the 2 points, the 1 I get for being a fighter and I still suck at the skill for this level. Not I am mediocre, not I am below average. I still suck even after spending a feat on it.

If you are taking 6 levels, it's because you want to take 6 levels. Not because you have to. Besides. A lot of fighters had a small int bonus and/or were human. Between the feat and levels, 1-3 levels will see you to just about anywhere you need to be.

Ok I told you how long I think it would take, map out for me how to actually do it in 2 levels. I am a 7th level fighter without any points in the Shadowdancer prerequisites now, tell me how to get a level of Shadowdancer NLT than character level 11.

Please, you say I can do it in 1-3 levels now tell me how!

Because if you didn't, the feat would need to be much weaker. The gating let the feat be more powerful.

Screw that! This makes no sense at all. Gating in is exactly what the name implies - gatekeeping!

Just let me take the feat when I want it. If I want to skip skill focus and take skill master I should be able to, I want to skip dodge and spring attack and take Whirlwind attack I should be able to.

There is no reason to chain feats or bar certain characters from certain feats.

Nope. That's a misperception. My personal experience and the experiences of all my players says otherwise.

I've given you many examples of things you are not allowed to take bby the rules.

Most good feats didn't need chains like that. That you keep ignoring all of those feats to concentrate on the few chain/1st level feats is telling.

Ok, give me some examples of good feats that are not chained and are the equivalent of chained feats in their respective group. For example a non-chained combat feat that is the equivalent of Greater Weapon Specialization.

You might not(but usually could) pick the feat that you wanted as soon as you leveled, but if you couldn't do it right away, you could in 1-3 levels which represented growing into that aspect.

First off, I don't want to "grow into" something. I want to get it now. Second this is just factually false. If my 7th Level Wizard wants to take Whirlwind attack after spending a night in a Dervish camp she can't do it, and she can't "grow into it" in 1-3 levels.

If she stays Wizard it will never be possible to get that feat at all. Even if she multiclasses to fighter it is going to take 5-6 levels to get there.

There was no Strawman, because I did not attribute to you any particular argument and then try to refute it. I flat out refuted your incorrect assertion players could just choose anything they wanted that was in 5e by telling you what RAW said.


No, we are talking about the number of options the rules support, and in 5E they support everything theoretically possible due to the fact that according to the rules, the rules themselves are mutable.

This is the logical fallacy with your earlier observation.

I don't know why you assume stupid characters when the average PC will have a 12 int and therefore +1 skill point per level. And you can further take a feat to just get 5 skill points if you want. It's not going to be 5 levels in most cases.

Well to start with, if it is my character I am building I would have decided what his or her intelligence was, and I will point out you are right now fencing my ability to build this off an average intelligence character concept.

Also, your 5 skill points you used a feat for still get halved to invest in cross-class skills.

You are also ignoring story. Story isn't POOF I'm now a Shadowdancer.

If that is the story I am trying to achieve that that is EXACTLY the story I am trying to achieve.

So what you are saying is the rules don't really support all these story options, they only provide very limited and counched support,or support over time.

Story is, "I gain a little bit here and a little bit there and grow over time into a Shadowdancer." Even if it takes you 5 levels(and it won't), that's still a valid and appropriate story change.

Ok tell me how to do it in fewer, let's assume I want to do this with my 8 intelligence Elf fighter.

The average fighter has a 12 int. 12 is the average of 4d6-L. You are deliberately giving the fighter a lower intelligence than he would have and that's not right.

So it is "not right" to play a low intelligence fighter if I want to?

What you are really saying here is that the 3.5E rules don't support a low intelligence fighter character concept. Add that to the long list of characters you can't do effectively in 3.5E!


My 5e PHB says natural explorer.

My 5e PHB says favored enemy.

My 5e PHB has no blind fighting as an option.

So you don't know the rules. The first two are options you do not have to take, the 3rd is a fighting style option available to Rangers ..... and as I noted earlier undead, despite not being required, is a themtically approriate favored enemy for the Shadowfell.
 
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Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
Ok what is a good feat my 7th level fighter with can take to be great at hiding no later than 8th level if he has invested zero points to date.

You claim I can do that, now tell me how!
This is a Strawman. We are discussing concepts in general and there are in fact lots of good feats.

But since you want to make this super narrow, if you are only interested in being a great hider at no later than 8th level, take 1 level of rogue. There's a good chance that or your main class has one of those as its preferred class. If it is, at 8th level you just invest your 9 skill points(8 for rogue and 1 for int) and with that 13 dex you said your guy has you have +10 to hide at 8th level which is darned good. If not, you wait two levels. Remember that I said 1-3 levels. At 9th level you take the feat to make rogue a preferred class.

Your 5e ranger, by the way, fails at being great at hiding. You have a 13 dex for +1. Even with proficiency and expertise, +7 isn't going to make you great at hiding. Good, sure. Great? No.

None of that change the fact, though, that you can pick up a TON of good story feats that are simply level gated somehow.
And I know I can't achieve even 5% of the concepts I can acheive in 5E in a .
That's because you've already admitted that you will kludge in something like ranger with its blatant nature association in place of something that is an accurate fit. For many of us, 80% of the way to the concept =/= meeting the concept.
You have already said on an earlier thread you pick a race that compliments your class, so you have already writeen off a bunch of concepts right there.
No. I said I saw it often. Not that I did it or that it happened every time. So no, I've written off exactly ZERO concepts. ;)
EXACTLY! Can do that concept.... at least not well.
Can't do it well in 5e, either. Fighters don't get more than two skills no matter what you do. Others come from backgrounds, other classes, and/or feats, just like in 3e.

Also, fighter with skills isn't really a concept. Concepts are more formed than that.
So that is 5 points halved to invest in a cross-class skill, giving me actually 2 extra (and one left over). I take that feat, invest the 2 points, the 1 I get for being a fighter and I still suck at the skill for this level. Not I am mediocre, not I am below average. I still suck even after spending a feat on it.
You keep contradicting yourself. You say on one hand that you are willing to grow into the concept, and on the other hand that you need an immediate right now full concept the instant you level up. Which is it?

And by the way, the feat was to get you the hide ranks for a prestige class that has the abilities you are looking for. Take that feat and you have an immediate 4 ranks in hiding. Within 2 more levels you will have enough to get you into most prestige classes that need hide AND those prestige classes generally come with more skill points and hide as a class skill, so you will suddenly be very good.

Again, within 3 levels. ;)
Ok I told you how long I think it would take, map out for me how to actually do it in 2 levels. I am a 7th level fighter without any points in the Shadowdancer prerequisites now, tell me how to get a level of Shadowdancer NLT than character level 11.
I've been ignoring you pushing Shadowdancer as THE requirement because it was moving the goalposts. You listed it as one possible outcome among many, so I will not entertain it as the only outcome you will accept. If you are close to it, then great! Otherwise go with one of the many other ways.
Please, you say I can do it in 1-3 levels now tell me how!
Never once said Shadowdancer in 1-3 levels with no requirements prior to leveling. 🤷‍♂️
Screw that! This makes no sense at all. Gating in is exactly what the name implies - gatekeeping!
The entire game is gating. You are gated to one class and race at first level. You are gated from higher levels via exp. You are gated from many spells through the leveling process. Gating is everywhere. If you don't like gating, you are playing the wrong game.
Just let me take the feat when I want it. If I want to skip skill focus and take skill master I should be able to, I want to skip dodge and spring attack and take Whirlwind attack I should be able to.
Then you will simply have a bunch of weak feats to pick from, so you can avoid gating. Many of us, though, would like to have more powerful feats to use at higher levels and so we enjoy the gating that allows it.
There is no reason to chain feats or bar certain characters from certain feats.
Sure there is. You may not like the reasons, but reasons do in fact exist whether you like them or not. Now personally I don't like chains that are more than two feats long. Cleave to great cleave for example, but I'm okay with short chains.
Ok, give me some examples of good feats that are not chained and are the equivalent of chained feats in their respective group. For example a non-chained combat feat that is the equivalent of Greater Weapon Specialization.
Disguise Spell
Deft Strike
Deft Opportunist
Dive for Cover
Expert Tactician
Extraordinary Concentration
Extraordinary Spell Aim

The list goes on and on and on and on and on.

Heck, one of my favorites is Robilar's Gambit.
First off, I don't want to "grow into" something. I want to get it now. Second this is just factually false. If my 7th Level Wizard wants to take Whirlwind attack after spending a night in a Dervish camp she can't do it, and she can't "grow into it" in 1-3 levels.
If your wizard(or even a fighter) wants to take whirlwind attack after spending a night, or even a week in a dervish camp, you aren't trying to get it for story reasons.
No, we are talking about the number of options the rules support, and in 5E they support everything theoretically possible due to the fact that according to the rules, the rules themselves are mutable.
3e's rules were just as mutable, but they had 10 billion(and I'm almost surely underestimating) times the combination of classes, feats, skills and prestige classes(subclasses).
This is the logical fallacy with your earlier observation.
There was no fallacy. You just disagree for some very strange reason. You think that literally less than 1% of the combinations 3e grants = better ability to achieve concepts. 5e objectively cannot meet the same number of concepts that 3e can meet. Not without sacrificing on the concept like you do with your ranger example.
Well to start with, if it is my character I am building I would have decided what his or her intelligence was, and I will point out you are right now fencing my ability to build this off an average intelligence character concept.
In 5e you can do that. In 3e you roll your stats, which means the average roll will be 12.
Also, your 5 skill points you used a feat for still get halved to invest in cross-class skills.
8, not 5. 5 for feat and 3 more for class and int bonus for having the average int of 12.
Ok tell me how to do it in fewer, and just to be mean, let's assume I want to do this with my 8 intelligence Elf fighter.
I'm not going to assume less than average intelligence, which is 12 when rolling 4d6-L.
So it is "not right" to play a low intelligence fighterif I want to?
Sure, but then you don't get to complain if the story doesn't work out how you like. Your choices matter and are themselves part of the story. If your PC is too stupid to pick up what he needs during his journey through the plane of shadow, that is also the story.
Do you want to go as far as to say the 3.5E rules don't support this character concept?
They support every single concept I have been able to imagine. Changing your concept on a dime =/= 3e not being able to achieve the concept.

It doesn't seem like you actually want to change for story reasons. You can see this from your examples. I spent a night at a dervish camp, so I should be able to instantly whirlwind attack! I walked into the plane of shadow, so I should instantly be able to be a shadowdancer!!

You aren't making story changes. You are making power changes to your character and then trying to paste on a weak justification for your desired power change.
 
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James Gasik

We don't talk about Pun-Pun
Supporter
Oh man, I thought this was a serious question, I was trying to figure out how quickly you could bind the Displacer Cloak Soulmeld to get constant concealment to make Hide checks.
 



ECMO3

Hero
This is a Strawman. We are discussing concepts in general and there are in fact lots of good feats.

Ok name some that are as good as the chained feats that could be had at that level.

But since you want to make this super narrow, if you are only interested in being a great hider at no later than 8th level, take 1 level of rogue. There's a good chance that or your main class has one of those as its preferred class. If it is, at 8th level you just invest your 9 skill points(8 for rogue and 1 for int) and with that 13 dex you said your guy has you have +10 to hide at 8th level which is darned good. If not, you wait two levels. Remember that I said 1-3 levels. At 9th level you take the feat to make rogue a preferred class.


A 10 hide and a 0 move silently will not even make you good at hiding against most enemies at 8th level.

Your 5e ranger, by the way, fails at being great at hiding. You have a 13 dex for +1. Even with proficiency and expertise, +7 isn't going to make you great at hiding. Good, sure. Great? No.

+7 stealth at 8th level in 5E is equal to about +10 in BOTH Hide and Move Silently in 3.5E at level 8 and it will actually be better as I advance without investing anything more.

That's because you've already admitted that you will kludge in something like ranger with its blatant nature association in place of something that is an accurate fit. For many of us, 80% of the way to the concept =/= meeting the concept.

You don't have to play with a nature association on a Ranger.

Can't do it well in 5e, either. Fighters don't get more than two skills no matter what you do. Others come from backgrounds, other classes, and/or feats, just like in 3e.

Not true. Most fighter subclasses offer extra skills or bonuses when using certain skills.

The Rune Knight subclass is the extreme example, giving you advantage on 6 different skill checks and you can get situational advantages on all strength checks and a +2 on all strength and con checks on top of that. That is just one class as an example.

If you are talking about single class builds Fighter-Rune Knight is one of the best platforms in 5E for a skill monkey. You would use feats, race and background to compliment this obviously but Rune Knights already get a ton in the way of skills.

You keep contradicting yourself. You say on one hand that you are willing to grow into the concept, and on the other hand that you need an immediate right now full concept the instant you level up. Which is it?

I want to grow it in one level. Or at least to effectiveness in 1 level.


And by the way, the feat was to get you the hide ranks for a prestige class that has the abilities you are looking for. Take that feat and you have an immediate 4 ranks in hiding.

No you don't. If you take the feat as a fighter you have 2 ranks in hide because hide is a cross class skill and it costs 4 skill points to get 2 ranks.

Within 2 more levels you will have enough to get you into most prestige classes that need hide AND those prestige classes generally come with more skill points and hide as a class skill, so you will suddenly be very good.

No you won't. Also, the maximum you can have in hide as a 9th level fighter is 7.


I've been ignoring you pushing Shadowdancer as THE requirement because it was moving the goalposts. You listed it as one possible outcome among many, so I will not entertain it as the only outcome you will accept. If you are close to it, then great! Otherwise go with one of the many other ways.

Never once said Shadowdancer in 1-3 levels with no requirements prior to leveling. 🤷‍♂️

Ok you don;t like Shadowdancer, but you are making all these vague references of how I can do what I want in 1-3 levels. Well tell me how you are going to do that. IF not Shadowdancer then what?


Then you will simply have a bunch of weak feats to pick from, so you can avoid gating.

That is what I said to start with! In 3.5E you are limited to weak feats unless you start planning from very early levels. You afre the one who claimed I can take awesome feats without ever planning for them.
Sure there is. You may not like the reasons, but reasons do in fact exist whether you like them or not. Now personally I don't like chains that are more than two feats long. Cleave to great cleave for example, but I'm okay with short chains.

Disguise Spell
Deft Strike
Deft Opportunist
Dive for Cover
Expert Tactician
Extraordinary Concentration
Extraordinary Spell Aim

The list goes on and on and on and on and on.

Those feats mostly (or maybe all) require prerequisites and are chained feats!

I asked for an example of a good Feat I can take at 8th level without having prepared to take it in advance and I think the only one of those on that list is Dive For Cover.

Heck, one of my favorites is Robilar's Gambit.

Yet another example of a chained feat.

If your wizard(or even a fighter) wants to take whirlwind attack after spending a night, or even a week in a dervish camp, you aren't trying to get it for story reasons.

Yes I am. There is little other reason for a Wizard to get that feat.


3e's rules were just as mutable, but they had 10 billion(and I'm almost surely underestimating) times the combination of classes, feats, skills and prestige classes(subclasses).

No they weren't because DM fiat was not officially part of the 3.5E rules.

The 3.5E rules did not state that the DM can change all the rules.

There was no fallacy. You just disagree for some very strange reason. You think that literally less than 1% of the combinations 3e grants = better ability to achieve concepts. 5e objectively cannot meet the same number of concepts that 3e can meet. Not without sacrificing on the concept like you do with your ranger example.

It can't meet the same number. It can meet more.


In 5e you can do that. In 3e you roll your stats, which means the average roll will be 12.

Your average low roll is a 9. On average your characters lowest stat will be a 9 and it will be somewhere in your array. With poor rolls you could have a 5.

I'm not going to assume less than average intelligence, which is 12 when rolling 4d6-L.

You are assuming much better than average.

On average you will have TWO abilities less than 12 on 4d6-1. Not one, two. Your lowest roll on average will be an 9, and your second lowest a 10. So unless you are assuming much better than average rolls those numbers will be somewhere.

So if you are assuming every ability is at least 12 you are assuming very optimistic rolls.

Above you mentioned a 13 Dexterity, so we will assume Dex is 13. Since we are talking about a fighter it stands to reason that Strength and Constitution are the highest two stats.

So that leaves the 3 lowest stats to split between Wisdom, Intelligence and Charisma. With those numbers statistically being 9, 10 and 12 you have a 66% chance of having below a 12 Intelligence with average rolls.

You aren't making story changes. You are making power changes to your character and then trying to paste on a weak justification for your desired power change.

No I'm not. Being able to hide effectively and getting Gloomstalker abilities after 3 levels is not a power move. Especially since I could get another feat, a 3rd attack and rerolling saving throws in 4 levels if I don't do that.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
A 10 hide and a 0 move silently will not even make you good at hiding against most enemies at 8th level.
You don't need to move silently to hide.
You don't have to play with a nature association on a Ranger.
It's baked into the class.
I want to grow it in one level. Or at least to effectiveness in 1 level.
That's not growing. That's instant gratification. If that's what you are after, just slap something on like you do that only kinda sort fits if you squint and call it story with some sort of justification.

What I want out of my characters is REAL growth, and options that truly FIT. I can't get that from 5e unless I engage in the relatively(compared to 3e) few character concepts that 5e contains.
No you don't. If you take the feat as a fighter you have 2 ranks in hide because hide is a cross class skill and it costs 4 skill points to get 2 ranks.
8/2=4. The math is simple. 5+3=8. That math is also simple. What aren't you understanding?
No you won't. Also, the maximum you can have in hide as a 9th level fighter is 7.
You get to put in a number of skill points into a skill = to level+3. So a 9th level character can have 12 points in it. So let's say the fighter has put in 8 points by level 8 and has 4 ranks. Then at 9th level takes a prestige class where hide is a class skill. He can then put 4 ranks into hide and will have 8 full ranks. He's not limited to 7 unless he's purely fighter, and then it's 6, not 7 since 12 points is max and that's 6 ranks.
Ok you don;t like Shadowdancer, but you are making all these vague references of how I can do what I want in 1-3 levels. Well tell me how you are going to do that. IF not Shadowdancer then what?
I've already given several non-exhaustive examples.
That is what I said to start with! In 3.5E you are limited to weak feats unless you start planning from very early levels. You afre the one who claimed I can take awesome feats without ever planning for them.
🤦‍♂️ This is wrong.

You are limited to weak feats if there is no gating. There is gating, including by level. Therefore you are not limited to weak feats unless you plan early. You can in fact take strong feats that you just happen to qualify for due to level gating.
Those feats mostly (or maybe all) require prerequisites and are chained feats!
Like the one you told me to use as an example. You told me to use the equivalent to Greater Weapon Specialization which requires. 1) Weapon focus, 2) Weapon specialization, 3) Greater Weapon Focus, and 4) level 12. I mean if you didn't want me to use examples like that, why'd you ask me to come up with comparables to it?
I asked for an example of a good Feat I can take at 8th level without having prepared to take it in advance and I think the only one of those on that list is Dive For Cover.
You will coincidentally qualify for many good feats. You can be more selective if you prepare, but preparation isn't necessary in the least.
Yes I am. There is little other reason for a Wizard to get that feat.
Sorry, but it's not for story if you want it in one night. Those dervishes who are of the class to actually use it had to train far longer. It not being useful to you doesn't make it for story reasons. Stories grow over time. Read some fantasy novels. The heroes almost never instantly pick up good stuff like that, and when they do magic or something has granted it to them. They almost never get it by simply looking.

Or maybe you're just thinking of those animes where gods reincarnate people with super S abilities to learn stuff in an instant. Which PCs aren't.
No they weren't because DM fiat was not officially part of the 3.5E rules.
You're kidding, right? The DMG literally says the DM defines the game. Also, and I'm quoting here, "Good players will always recognize that you have the ultimate authority over the game mechanics, even superseding something in the rulebook."

DM fiat was part of 3e as it has been in every incarnation of the game.
The 3.5E rules did not state that the DM can change all the rules.
Yes it did. Rule 0 was RAW.
It can't meet the same number. It can meet more.
Yeaaaaah, math proves you wrong. It's quite literally impossible for you to be correct.
Your average low roll is a 9. On average your characters lowest stat will be a 9 and it will be somewhere in your array. With poor rolls you could have a 5.
Average is 12.24 no matter how you try to twist it. You don't get to use poor rolls, because I don't get to use good ones. The instant you are free to use a 9 or a 5, I get to use 15 and 17. 12 is the only acceptable number for these discussions since stats were rolled and 12 is average for 4d6-L.
You are assuming much better than average.
Math again proves you to be objectively wrong. You're using 3d6, not 4d6-L which was the default rolling method.
So if you are assuming every ability is at least 12 you are assuming very optimistic rolls.
No. That's average. We don't know what will be rolled or where someone might put the various stats, so you can't assume 9 any more than I can assume 15. Average has to be used.
Above you mentioned a 13 Dexterity, so we will assume Dex is 13. Since we are talking about a fighter it stands to reason that Strength and Constitution are the highest two stats.
13 has to be there for you to take ranger. If we are assuming 9 or even 12, then you can't multiclass with your 5e character.
No I'm not. Being able to hide effectively and getting Gloomstalker abilities after 3 levels is not a power move. Especially since I could get another feat, a 3rd attack and rerolling saving throws in 4 levels if I don't do that.
You don't get 3 levels, though. You only get 1. You just said this in the post I am quoting here, "I want to grow it in one level. Or at least to effectiveness in 1 level."
 
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MNblockhead

A Title Much Cooler Than Anything on the Old Site
In 5e I spent years doing XP, and years doing story-based leveling, with different tables... I ended up going from XP to Story-Based, and then back to XP.
Usually I found that it depends on the table; some tables don't care as much about leveling up, but most of mine have- and switching to story-based leveling won't help the "have we leveled yet?" attitude if your table was already chasing XP to level up.
I've used many different advancement options in 5e, by far my two most favorite have been:

1. XP for GP. But that also required third-party and homebrew subsystems for spending it. I favors a more old school style of play where it doesn't make sense to constantly attempt to kill every enemy, rewards exploration, sneaking, and encountering things the PCs have no way to beat in combat. It can also greatly slow down leveling, which was a plus for the campaign I used it in. By tier 4, however, we switched to milestone leveling as it was just more practical and satisfying from a story standpoint.

2. Structured milestone XP. I used the "Structured Milestone XP for Curse of Strahd" by R. Padron. Basically it is like mini-milestone leveling. You get points for defeating important NPCs (not for every wolf or zombie you kill), exploring different areas, finding different macguffins, completing/solving different plot points, etc. The downside it it takes a lot more work to adjust published adventures to use this approach, compared to regular XP or milestone leveling. For homebrew adventures and campaigns, it is easier than normal XP but more work than regular milestone. But I find it more rewarding that straight milestone leveling.
 

Distracted DM

Distracted DM
Supporter
I've used many different advancement options in 5e, by far my two most favorite have been:

1. XP for GP. But that also required third-party and homebrew subsystems for spending it. I favors a more old school style of play where it doesn't make sense to constantly attempt to kill every enemy, rewards exploration, sneaking, and encountering things the PCs have no way to beat in combat. It can also greatly slow down leveling, which was a plus for the campaign I used it in. By tier 4, however, we switched to milestone leveling as it was just more practical and satisfying from a story standpoint.

2. Structured milestone XP. I used the "Structured Milestone XP for Curse of Strahd" by R. Padron. Basically it is like mini-milestone leveling. You get points for defeating important NPCs (not for every wolf or zombie you kill), exploring different areas, finding different macguffins, completing/solving different plot points, etc. The downside it it takes a lot more work to adjust published adventures to use this approach, compared to regular XP or milestone leveling. For homebrew adventures and campaigns, it is easier than normal XP but more work than regular milestone. But I find it more rewarding that straight milestone leveling.

1. What 3pp have you used for XP for treasure? I did my own thing for a while but it wasnt worth the extra work I had to do.

2. Yeah something like this is great because it controls leveling pace, but takes a lot of work for the DM.

I now give XP for everything: treasure, quests, monsters (reduced), encounters, etc... what's funny is, I find that the players still tend to level every 4-5 sessions as if I were just doing standard XP.
Some of my campaigns take longer at some points, it really depends on what the party is doing. Or if they fight a bunch of goblins at level 7, it can still take time and can still be dangerous, but the goblins aren't worth as much XP :D
 

SteveC

Doing the best imitation of myself
On magic item prices, my DM for our current game uses this list here. I haven't checked it out in depth, but we've purchased some consumables from it. The link is called "Sane Magical Prices." (As a note, I don't think this is something that I shouldn't share because it's commercial, but if it needs to be removed, so be it).
 

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