PCs vs the 15' wall, a D&D Edition retrospective

mflayermonk

First Post
Your stalwart group of PCs approach a 15' tall wall with kobolds guarding the top. Here is how the encounter is solved in each edition.

5e: Your PC approaches the wall, makes an athletics check and climbs to the top, ready to engage the kobolds in the next round.

4e: Your PC approaches the wall, you use an encounter power that pulls the kobolds from the wall and into the squares in front of you. You then spend an action point and use a daily power to area attack them.

3e: Your PC approaches the wall, you make an athletics check to jump to the top of the 15' wall and then begin attacking kobolds.

2e: You are a multiclass caster of some sort. You read a scroll of spider climb, approach the wall, climb it, and attack a kobold.

1e: Your group halts. You retreat to cover and roll charisma checks to convince your retainers to lead a diversionary assault on the wall while you attack from the side. You attack from the side, however, your first assault is repelled by the kobold's polearm weapons. The wizard is killed by the falling damage from a 10' fall.
 
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ccs

41st lv DM
You didn't play 1e or 2e did you?

Because
1) you're equelly likely to be a MC caster in either edition,
2) you're not likely to use that scroll this way - if you're low(er) lv you conserve things like this for times of actual need, if you're high enough lv to create it then you're also high enough lv to just obliterate the kobold wall obstical. But again, unless the needs dire you conserve the resources.
3) (nearly) Everybody who can, carries missile weapons of some kind in AD&D. You halt at range & mow the little dog-men down in a hail of arrows/bolts/sling stones. Maybe a javelin or such as well. THEN you scale the wall.
Meanwhile during the missile fire? The thieves have aproached & scaled the wall and are now backstabbing the survivors that couldn't be seen/hit by the archers.
 

MoutonRustique

Explorer
If you want a more focused discussion on this, it might be a good idea to narrow the premise down:
- the Fighter vs the 15 foot wall
- the Rogue vs the 15 foot wall
- the ... you probably know where I'm going with this

On the other hand, inviting comparisons between editions tends to turn out... poorly. But maybe this is the thread where we'll get civil discussion about it! One can always hope! :)
 


Your stalwart group of PCs approach a 15' tall wall with kobolds guarding the top. Here is how the encounter is solved in each edition.

5e: Your PC approaches the wall, makes an athletics check and climbs to the top, ready to engage the kobolds in the next round.

4e: Your PC approaches the wall, you use an encounter power that pulls the kobolds from the wall and into the squares in front of you. You then spend an action point and use a daily power to area attack them.

3e: Your PC approaches the wall, you make an athletics check to jump to the top of the 15' wall and then begin attacking kobolds.

2e: You are a multiclass caster of some sort. You read a scroll of spider climb, approach the wall, climb it, and attack a kobold.

1e: Your group halts. You retreat to cover and roll charisma checks to convince your retainers to lead a diversionary assault on the wall while you attack from the side. You attack from the side, however, your first assault is repelled by the kobold's polearm weapons. The wizard is killed by the falling damage from a 10' fall.
It isn't the edition - it's how YOU play it. Even 4E you can handle the wall and the kobolds with the same approach to the game overall as you would in the 1E example - if you want to. If you just want to treat it as a mindless application of stilted rules in a game of tactics, you can do that in 1E too. It's not quite the Stormwind Fallacy, but it's perhaps related. It is true that a particular edition may promote certain playstyles by the very nature of it's rules (especially combat rules), but that doesn't limit gameplay to one and only one approach. Therefore you have to tread lightly when giving a list like this because it is virtually never an objective assessment of how one edition promotes certain gameplay styles over another, but a presentation of personal preferences and biases regarding various editions, and people react STRONGLY to... suggestions that an edition they prefer is being dissed, even if it's not meant that way.

That said, _I_ wouldn't disagree too strongly with your assessments. But that's just ME.
 


Greenfield

Adventurer
Explain this "Athletics check" thing in 3e to me please. No such skill or check in either 3.0 or 3.5.

Pathfinder uses Athletics.

In no 3rd edition book, class or other source that I know of can a PC jump to the top of a 15 foot wall without magic, or epic level abilities. (Your target number would be 45, presuming a running start.

Try this:

In 3e your caster throws the 1st level spell Obscuring Mist so his more athletic companions can scale the wall (possibly using ropes and climbing hooks) t engage the Kobolds in close combat. They later help him climb that wall, since he has a bare 50% chance even with a rope. (Climb is cross class for Wizards and Sorcerers, who are unlikely to have put anything int Strength, and the DC for climbing a rope is 10, before encumbrance.)
 

mflayermonk

First Post
Explain this "Athletics check" thing in 3e to me please. No such skill or check in either 3.0 or 3.5.

Pathfinder uses Athletics.

In no 3rd edition book, class or other source that I know of can a PC jump to the top of a 15 foot wall without magic, or epic level abilities. (Your target number would be 45, presuming a running start.

Thank you, that should be Jump.

Your reach is 8 feet (depending on race) and you need to jump the additional 7 feet to grab the ledge. DC 28 Jump check.
 


dagger

Adventurer
Over 30 years of each and still playing and DMing both today!

Same here, but our main game is 5e. You could always make a climb check if its 2e using a NWP, Thief, or the climbing rules found in the 2nd Edition PHB.

Or for your 1e game a Rope Use check using NWP out of DSG, and some 1e tables use 2e NWPs also. Or for 1e you can just throw a rope with grappling hook and climb up, and thief makes a climb rolled if he wants. Or some tables might use a STR or Dex check.

You could also use the Jumping rules out of WSG for your 1e game, but if its a 2e game you have a Jumping NWP in the PHB.

That's just a few I can think of right now
 
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