D&D (2024) Playtest 6: Stealth Rules

Stalker0

Legend
I'd even go so far as to say the game probably doesn't even need to do that. Because at the end of the day... when a DM picks up their copy of the PHB, they either are going to spend the 10 minutes flipping back and forth in the book reading the various applicable bits about skill checks and cover and concealment and line of sight and invisibility etc. etc. and then cobbling together what they think the process is meant to be... or they won't bother and they'll just run stealth however they want. And in both cases... every single DM will find the rules or lack of rules wanting in some form and fashion-- each one with something completely different than any other DM-- and they will eventually jerry-rig their own set of rules for how they think Stealth checks and hiding should go. And this would be true even if WotC DID put all the rules together in one place in the PHB-- plenty of DMs would still find them lacking and just create new ones for themselves anyway.

That's what I think the real issue is... this idea that if we and WotC could just find that one magical "set of instructions" on how it should work that every single DM would get on board and we'd all use the same system happily. And I just don't think that's true. So it doesn't really matter and we shouldn't break our brains trying to figure it out. Heh heh... I bet WotC could just actually write in the book "Stealth Rules: Do whatever the heck you want, we don't care."... and that would be embraced by the community just as much as any attempt at creating a unified set of rules. ;)
I can’t behind that. You are acknowledging that the rules are clunky to use, but that consolidating them would have no benefit.

sure it might not be a magical cure all, but better organization is always useful in a rules document
 

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DEFCON 1

Legend
Supporter
I can’t behind that. You are acknowledging that the rules are clunky to use, but that consolidating them would have no benefit.

sure it might not be a magical cure all, but better organization is always useful in a rules document
I don't disagree there might be a little benefit. It'd save the new DM probably 5 minutes in reading time having all the rules in one place rather than spending the 10 minutes flipping through the different sections of the book. But I just don't think those 10 minutes of reading were really such a hardship for all of us that we were incapable of putting in the effort.

Every single one of us read the various bits and bobs on Stealth and Hiding in the PHB. We all cobbled together how we thought it worked. We then all used the rules. It wasn't a big deal. So whether we spend 10 minutes with a disorganized set of rules or 5 minutes reading an organized one... we all end up in the same exact place-- a set of Stealth rules that every single DM is going to interpret differently anway, or even if they don't, they won't LIKE the interpretation and will end up creating their own complete set of house rules on how they want to run it regardless.
 

Hriston

Dungeon Master of Middle-earth
Comparing this Hide action with the 2014 Hide action which references the "Hiding" sidebar and the "Unseen Attackers and Targets" rules, the clear intent seems to be to remove in-combat hiding from the realm of DM discretion and turn it into a player facing "stealth mode" that can be invoked reliably and under pre-defined conditions.
  • Where the Hiding sidebar has "The DM decides when circumstances are appropriate for hiding", the playtest gives clearly defined circumstances that, if established, would then allow a player to call for their own Stealth check and requires the DM to disclose information about whether said circumstances have been met.
  • Where the Hiding sidebar has the success of your check depend on a contest with the Perception checks of creatures whose Wisdom scores and Perception proficiencies are potentially unknown to the players and ultimately set by the DM, the playtest requires that you hit a fixed DC of 15.
  • Where the Hiding sidebar has "under certain circumstances, the DM might allow you to stay hidden as you approach a creature that is distracted," the playtest grants the player the Invisible condition which does not end until either the player takes certain actions to end it or an enemy finds you with a Wisdom (Perception) check.
The desired result seems to be that hiding in combat will be more like making an attack. I.e. the player states they are taking the action and rolls unbidden by the DM.
 

James Gasik

We don't talk about Pun-Pun
Supporter
I was talking about here on Enworld, and elsewhere on the interwebs.

While not necessarily representative of the true whole of the DND audience, the online community is a very vocal minority and they, on the whole, do not take kindly to "Lol just make it up" game design.
I mean, it's not hard to figure out. If a set of three books costs you 80-130 bucks (depending on where you purchase them), cracking them open to find that the absolute pinnacle of game design is to make up your own rules is more than a little frustrating.
 
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DEFCON 1

Legend
Supporter
I was talking about here on Enworld, and elsewhere on the interwebs.

While not necessarily representative of the true whole of the DND audience, the online community is a very vocal minority and they, on the whole, do not take kindly to "Lol just make it up" game design.
Of course not. The online community is very much more of the opinion that THEY know what is right and wrong with D&D and anything that gets done which runs counter to that is very much because the designers are lazy or stupid or aiming for the wrong audience or any other reason. It's never because their voice is just one in hundreds of thousands of other voices all of whom have differing ideas of what is right or wrong and unfortunately WotC can't satisfy all of them with a single book.

WotC can satisfy a small sliver of the D&D community with every rule they put in. The other larger swathe of the community will either just accept that X rule isn't really that big of a deal and go along with it even if they aren't crazy about it... they'll think it's crap but use it begrudgingly because it's easier to do so than to not... they'll think it's crap and that they can design something better and in fact will create their own houserules to do so... or they'll think it's so much crap that they just don't bother playing the game at all. It's the same song and dance we've seen since the beginning of the game's existance.

I accepted long ago that WotC is going to include rules in their books that I probably won't care for because they are aiming at a target audience for them that isn't me. So be it. It is what it is.
 

IT's mor

I mean, it's not hard to figure out. If a set of three books costs you 80-130 bucks (depending on where you purchase them), cracking them open to find that the absolute pinnacle of game design is to make up your own rules is more than a little frustrating.

Sure but I think that comes down to anti-consumer business practices more than it does lazy game design.

The DND books shouldn't cost as much as they do, and especially not digitally, which last I checked still retailed at the same price as physical.
 

It's the same song and dance we've seen since the beginning of the game's existance.

Yeah thats a big chunk of the issue too that there isn't necessarily a easily identifiable "good" solution to a given game mechanic question, and I think that comes down to them pushing a generalist mindset with the game when the game isn't actually designed as a generalist system.

A lot of DND rules, in 5e and in the past, make a lot more sense when you embrace what it was actually written to support. Dungeon crawling just works, even in 5e.

The kinds of things the game keeps getting pulled towards that reveal its shortcomings aren't really a problem with the system so much as a problem with, whether it be by the designers, GM, or players intentions, violating the genre DND supports (Appendix N).
 

DEFCON 1

Legend
Supporter
Yeah thats a big chunk of the issue too that there isn't necessarily a easily identifiable "good" solution to a given game mechanic question, and I think that comes down to them pushing a generalist mindset with the game when the game isn't actually designed as a generalist system.

A lot of DND rules, in 5e and in the past, make a lot more sense when you embrace what it was actually written to support. Dungeon crawling just works, even in 5e.

The kinds of things the game keeps getting pulled towards that reveal its shortcomings aren't really a problem with the system so much as a problem with, whether it be by the designers, GM, or players intentions, violating the genre DND supports (Appendix N).
Sure. But what can we do about it?

The game was designed as an evolution out of miniatures wargaming. A lot of the game still has that baseline and foundation to what it includes. Are those foundations not great for other types or styles of roleplaying? Absolutely. But what are we to do? If we want something different that IS great for other types or styles of roleplaying, we can just go play those games if we want. But we never do. For whatever goofy-ass reason (nostalgia, keeping up with times, wanting to be a part of the big gang)... we all want to keep playing Dungeons & Dragons, even if Dungeons & Dragons is not in fact the game we should be playing based on our best-case-scenario design for what we do. And we slam our heads repeatedly against every single wall trying to get WotC to change their design towards what we want, or jerry-rig the rules after the fact to get them more in line with what we'd prefer.

We are completely just killing ourselves over all of this. But then again, what else are we going to do? NOT PLAY D&D?!? I don't think any of us want to consider that doomsday scenario. ;)
 

We are completely just killing ourselves over all of this. But then again, what else are we going to do? NOT PLAY D&D?!? I don't think any of us want to consider that doomsday scenario. ;)

🤷‍♂️

I think the lack of popular actual-plays of other games is a big culprit in why DND seems so sticky like that; DND itself only exploded into its current popularity because the personalities within Critical Role became very popular, and I guarantee you if they had stuck with Pathfinder there'd probably be a very different landscape by now.

People weren't sending pizzas to those guys just because DND was that cool; they were cool.

Heck, even I only came into the TTRPG scene from cRPGs because I had found in CR a reliable and interesting way to actually see how these games work in action, which eventually lead to me being in the group Im with and then on to writing my own game.

Its really a problem I think just exists with tabletop gaming in general. If you don't have friends or a Lets Play to watch thats doing some newfangled game you've never heard of, you're only going to know games that have broken out into mainstream culture.

And for whatever reason, something about tabletop gaming seems to preclude a lot of exploring of other games. I think its mostly to do with just being able to jump in at any time, friends or no friends, but even then.
 

Stalker0

Legend
I don't disagree there might be a little benefit. It'd save the new DM probably 5 minutes in reading time having all the rules in one place rather than spending the 10 minutes flipping through the different sections of the book. But I just don't think those 10 minutes of reading were really such a hardship for all of us that we were incapable of putting in the effort.

Every single one of us read the various bits and bobs on Stealth and Hiding in the PHB. We all cobbled together how we thought it worked. We then all used the rules. It wasn't a big deal. So whether we spend 10 minutes with a disorganized set of rules or 5 minutes reading an organized one... we all end up in the same exact place-- a set of Stealth rules that every single DM is going to interpret differently anway, or even if they don't, they won't LIKE the interpretation and will end up creating their own complete set of house rules on how they want to run it regardless.
your assumption here is: that once I have read through the rules I have memorized them and will never flip through my phb again to put them together.

As a long standing dm with apparently not the best memory, I will kindly disagree :)

Anything that prevents page flipping won't just do it once in my dm career, it will do it several times over.
 

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