D&D 5E player knowlege vs character knowlege (spoiler)

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
That logic puzzles me.

You're right that nothing explicitly supports the use of player knowledge, but nothing explicitly denies it either.

That leaves it in the same category as, "Nothing explicitly supports a longsword hit detonating a nuclear explosion, but nothing explicitly denies it either." Absence of denial does not equate to allowance. There are billions of things that the game doesn't explicitly allow or deny. The DM has to actively alter the rules to include the vast majority of things that are not explicitly denied.

And even with player knowledge, knowledge skills...even the specific "recall lore" use of them...is plenty useful, because players will often not know something, either because they don't think they know, or because they think they do and they're wrong. So to conclude that the presence of knowledge skills suggests that player knowledge is verboten is just....well, that's just not a valid conclusion. The most you could say is that the presence of knowledge skills is not incompatible with a no-player-knowledge houserule.
It's a lot more support than the absolutely nothing you have supporting the unlimited use of player knowledge. Is it a tremendous amount? No.
 

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Cadence

Legend
Supporter
TIL. you can buy "Volo's Guide to Monsters" in "Tomb of Annihilation" for 50gp.

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It's a bit different from the one on your real-world shelf since it does not contain game statistics (those aren't available in the game world).
 

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Guest 6801328

Guest
That leaves it in the same category as, "Nothing explicitly supports a longsword hit detonating a nuclear explosion, but nothing explicitly denies it either." Absence of denial does not equate to allowance. There are billions of things that the game doesn't explicitly allow or deny. The DM has to actively alter the rules to include the vast majority of things that are not explicitly denied.

Max, that's just a silly argument. Are you really arguing that anything not explicitly allowed is by default disallowed? Should we play the game of coming up with a list of things that the rules don't explicitly allow?

And note that we're not talking about an in-game action, but about the way the player engages in the game. Does a player need permission to flip a coin to choose between two options? Are players allowed to take notes while playing? Are players allowed to use Scottish accents? Is it ok to "warm up" before a dice roll by rolling them a few times? Are metal dice legal?

Heck, are Virtual Table Tops legal?!?!?! I don't recall seeing anything in the PHB.

It's a lot more support than the absolutely nothing you have supporting the unlimited use of player knowledge. Is it a tremendous amount? No.

No, it's zero support. If anything, their failure to mention player knowledge in the section on metagame thinking is support for the opposite conclusion.

I know you really really really really want player knowledge to be cheating, but the designers blatantly (given that it was addressed in past editions) decided to leave it out of this one.
 

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Guest 6801328

Guest
And just out of curiosity, why is it so important to you that player knowledge be officially illegal? Everybody in this thread has said many times that if you and your friends want to play without player knowledge, that's a totally valid thing to do. We're not arguing that RAW demands you must use player knowledge. Just that you can, if you want.

We're acknowledging that your way is valid (if problematic). Why do you place so much importance in proving that our way is not valid?
 
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iserith

Magic Wordsmith
This is incorrect. The ability check rules support it by including knowledge and lore under ability checks.

Recalling lore and making deductions, actions only the player has the ability to declare for their own character. Only then does the DM get involved to adjudicate the action. The player decides what the character thinks, does, and says.

What is not supported anywhere is the idea that the player can just use any player knowledge he wants.

What the group's stance is on "metagaming" is a table rule.

It also does not at all push the group to figure out who knows what. I've played this way for decades and have seen 0 groups or parts of groups get together to figure out who knows what. It might happen somewhere, but it's an exceedingly small minority of players if it does happen.

If the players are asking the DM if their characters know something and the DM is weighing in on that, then that's the group figuring out who knows what in the metagame. It is not active nor descriptive roleplaying. It's a sidebar with the DM. I personally have no issue with playing in the metagame. If you do, this doesn't seem like the best approach to employ to achieve that goal.
 

iserith

Magic Wordsmith
I know you really really really really want player knowledge to be cheating, but the designers blatantly (given that it was addressed in past editions) decided to leave it out of this one.

They might even have explicitly said that it's a table rule, as I've been saying.
 

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Guest 6801328

Guest
Recalling lore and making deductions, actions only the player has the ability to declare for their own character. Only then does the DM get involved to adjudicate the action. The player decides what the character thinks, does, and says.

Yes. Player knowledge, character knowledge, luck, random choice...all the factors that go into deciding what action the character takes...is 100% in the hands of the player.

Once that action is declared, the DM adjudicates the outcome. One way of doing that is by calling for an ability check.

Player knowledge (among other things) contribute to determining the action. Knowledge skills (among other things) contribute to determining the outcome.

That's why the existence of knowledge skills have absolutely nothing to do with the permissibility of player knowledge.
 
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Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
Max, that's just a silly argument. Are you really arguing that anything not explicitly allowed is by default disallowed? Should we play the game of coming up with a list of things that the rules don't explicitly allow?

I was very clear in what I said, and that Strawman wasn't it.
 

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Guest 6801328

Guest
I was very clear in what I said, and that Strawman wasn't it.

No, sorry, it's not a strawman, although possibly a misunderstanding (you call a LOT of things a "strawman"). You said the the DM would have to explicitly allow things that are not explicitly allowed by the rules, which is the same thing as being disallowed by default. They are equivalent.
 

hawkeyefan

Legend
He suspects her to be a Lich based on that player knowledge that his character does not have.

He wouldnt hold that suspicion but for that player knowledge.

No, that’s not why the character does what he does.

Or rather, it may be....but as with everything else the player decides the actual reason. Of which there could be any number of reasons.

This would be like having the character acknowledge that they’re in Chult so the player can have fun. We all know that’s the real life reason.....but there’s also a made up reason, even if it’s as simple as the character being an “adventurer”.

Characters have all kinds of fictional reasons for doing things that differ from the real life reasons that players have them do them. Why should this instance with the lich be different?


No, it is just that some of us are merely capable of understanding that the character is person in a fictional setting and thus doesn't have access to same information that the player and this is pretty integral to playing a role and that the game master is ultimately the arbiter of what can or cannot be known by the fictional people in the setting.

You’re right, the character doesn’t have the same knowledge of the fictional setting as the player does. In some ways, they would have less. In other ways, they’d have far more.

I mean....imagine the typical farmboy turned adventurer type PC. He’d know all kinds of things about crops and about the people in his village and the merchants who come there each season. And he’d know all the stories that the village elder told by firelight each month when there was no moon. And all manner of other things that a person living a life learns.

Sometimes player knowledge is a good way to represent this. Especially when it doesn’t “ruin” anything, but actually creates a more dynamic situation instead.

I ran Tomb of Annihilation, and although none of my players recognized Valindra from the books, I told them she gave them an uneasy feeling, and that was all it took for them to figure out that she was more than she appeared. The reason I did this is because the encounter is pretty boring otherwise.

If one of my players saved me from having to prompt them, however minor, what’s the issue?
 

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