proposal: change death penalty

evilbob

Visitor
Currently, the penalty for being raised via Raise Dead is:

The subject returns with a death penalty: –1 to all attack rolls, skill checks, saving throws, and ability checks. This death penalty fades after the subject reaches three milestones.

Reaching 3 milestones in PbP could take... an infinite amount of time. Given the general play structure (fewer, harder encounters) this seems disproportionately harsh.

I am open to any suggestions that lessen the penalty. To get the ball rolling, I'll suggest changing it to:

This death penalty fades after the subject completes three encounters.

Thoughts?
 

CaBaNa

Visitor
I like three encounters, two is too few, four may or may not be too many.

Good suggestion evilbob.
 

KarinsDad

Visitor
3 milestones at minimum takes 6 encounters and at maximum takes 9 encounters, regardless of whether it is a table game or a PBP game. Talk to the DM and arrange for a 6 encounter/skill challenge day if possible to make it closer to 6.

The purpose of death rules is to die. Sidestepping those rules with Raise Dead is fine, but there should be a penalty.

People want to have their cake and eat it too. They want challenges, but they don't want their PC to die. They want to RP angst and sorrow over a fellow PC dying, but they want that PC up and about the very next game day.

And the penalty is not that severe anyway. A player makes at most maybe 7 or so D20 rolls per encounter (unless it is an area effect PC). That means that the PC on average will fail on something that he would have succeeded on 1 encounter in 3. That would on average be 2 or 3 failures total.

Is that really as "disproportionately harsh" as you claim?
 

FourMonos

Visitor
And if you have seen Unit 16 play, it wouldn't make a difference since he misses all the time anyway. :) (I'm not being mean, I've seen EB post the average roll numbers for his character.)

I agree with KD. But I'm not a judge so you can ignore my opinion.
 

renau1g

Visitor
Yeah I find Death penalties too lax actually as opposed to being too harsh, even in PbP. Actually, how many PC's have died in LEB? 1...right? Just Pis? That situation was also a more unique one with a pretty low probability of happening and a Coup de Grace.

3 milestones likley will take about 6 months or so at a decent pace. As KD pointed out it's a 5% reduction in to hit, so 1 out of 20 rolls are affected. I think the number may be slightly higher than 7 rolls/encounter if you count a lot of save ends effects, but yeah really it's 2 to 4 failures to be expected.
 

twilsemail

Visitor
Is that really as "disproportionately harsh" as you claim?
Yes.

At a table you deal with your PC being at a disadvantage for a day or two (week or two, but you're not gaming on those other days). In LEB you're watching your PC have a -5% chance to everything for the next 6-12 months IRL. You're possibly leveling 2-3 times in that ammount of time.

If you're going to double the potency of an encounter as far as XP goes. Why not as far as "shaking the chill of the grave?"
 

Mezegis

Visitor
I would change it to 3 milestones or extended rests done post encounter. At minimum you do 3 encounters, at max, 6 for the normal milestone process. Most likely it'll be 5; 2 encounters on day one for 1 milestone, the extended rest, and then milestone 2 after 2 encounters on day two.

The stipulation of extended rest post encounter prevents someone from just resting 3 days and not actually suffering a penalty.
 

evilbob

Visitor
The maximum number of encounters you can have without achieving 3 milestones is infinite. You have to have two encounters in a row to achieve a milestone; if you did one encounter and rested every time, you'd never make it. This isn't likely in tabletop but a more realistic chance in PbP. That said, I doubt it would take forever, but it could certainly take much more than 6 encounters.


I'll be honest: my opinion is that death penalties are stupid. Your character died: they have to wait around for a few real-life weeks or months to get rez'd and you can't play them. That is a penalty. Anything on top of that, in my opinion, is pointlessly punitive.

Personally, I would advocate that the death penalty is: nothing. When you get raised, you're back and that's it. I guessed that might be a tad controversial, however, :) so I tempered it to "3 encounters".

Remember: 3 encounters can be 9 months on these boards. At BEST it's probably 3 months. That may not be much time in-game but in real life, that's forever. Again: this is my opinion; YMMV.
 

KarinsDad

Visitor
Remember: 3 encounters can be 9 months on these boards. At BEST it's probably 3 months. That may not be much time in-game but in real life, that's forever. Again: this is my opinion; YMMV.
Understood.

But, I don't understand the need to change the rule.

This appears to be an attempt to somehow resolve a problem that a) not everyone agrees is a problem, b) resolve it before we have any data from actual game play as to whether it is a real problem or not, and c) the only person currently affected by it doesn't seem bothered by it.

I don't think we should change the rules, every time a player (or players) makes a mistake and suddenly finds his PC behind the eight ball (I personally thought that provoking 3 OAs at 9 hit points was a tactical mistake, regardless of the intended heroism).

Personally, I like to keep the number of house rules, especially house rules that directly affect the actual rules of the game, to a minimum. It makes it easier on everyone if we play the game based on WotC rules as opposed to a hodge podge of house rules.
 

evilbob

Visitor
Those are all fair points: a, b, c, and the house rules point. I do not dispute any of that.

I still stand by the proposal because I believe it's still worth it: I think for any future deaths it is worth hashing out now. I think the death penalty in the DMG - when taken in the context of PbP - makes no sense. I think it's worth changing the rule in anticipation of this disparity.

And, as a secondary reason, I think it would be an appropriate way to handle the single case we have now, whether or not twilsemail believes it is necessary.
 

CaBaNa

Visitor
Don't make things personal KD, if the character recklessly endangers itself, it recklessly endangers itself. twilsemail doesn't need to be hassled over RP/tactics, because of this proposal, or for any other reason, excepting blatant and purposeful disruption. That single case should have nothing (or extremely little) to do with this proposal. Din "Pis" is not the reason for this proposal, and shouldn't be made such.

I agree that extra house rules make us less attractive to new characters.

However, maintaining our current player base is just as important as attracting new characters.

The problem is, Death Penalty can last for a year or more. The solution could be any number of things, but blowing off the problem until it becomes a group wide concern isn't the best answer.

As a player, I'd rather see; the penalty for being raised via Raise Dead is:

The subject returns with a death penalty: –1 to all attack rolls, skill checks, saving throws, and ability checks.

This death penalty fades after the subject reaches three milestones, or gains 6 RP, whichever occurs first.
 
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renau1g

Visitor
In KD's defense, I don't think he's making it personal, just pointing out a sample case. On the flip side is that if a character recklessly endangers themselves, they understand the risk associated with their actions.

The only PC deaths I've seen in PbP were in sg's Ravenloft game where we made the excellent decision to split the party. In IG's game where my PC was killed by a super-crit when he was at single-digit HP's and he made a reckless move to attack the big bad guy. In my Chef's Request game, but the player had already disappeared, it was an aura that killed him. In Closed Eye, the group had engaged two groups of enemies at once, which is obviously asking for trouble. In Velmont's game, PC drew 3 OA's while at single digit hp.

In all of those instances the PC's caused the death with their actions, the DM rolls the dice and they fall where they may.
 
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twilsemail

Visitor
I'm still OK with the Death Penalty rules as they are. They make the PC unappealing to play, but that's my concern, not LEB's.

As an aside, I'm surprised that KD can continue to have less tact than I do. I'm going to request he leave me out of his posts in the future.

Edit: note: I'm certainly not saying to shelve the discussion. I'd just rather my PC and I be left out of it, especially if it's going to lead to personal attacks or insults against my capabilities as a gamer.
 

twilsemail

Visitor
Speaking of personal attacks ;)
He's mentioned a lack of tact in the past. I imagine he'd be about as insulted by that post as I'd be. I don't think he intended the "tactical mistake" comment to be insulting, which would mean it's not a personal attack. I think he was just stating his opinion and not filtering for how it might be received.

The decision to make that attack was an informed one. Dead PC was one of the intended possible outcomes. Thus, not a mistake. He may not view it as optimal, and he'd be right, but it was not a mistake.
 

KarinsDad

Visitor
Edit: note: I'm certainly not saying to shelve the discussion. I'd just rather my PC and I be left out of it, especially if it's going to lead to personal attacks or insults against my capabilities as a gamer.
I apologize if you took that personally. If you think that provoking 3 OAs when a PC is down to 9 hits points (something which could have been avoided earlier and not just by your PC) and when other options are available is not a tactical mistake and saying so is a personal attack on you, then we can agree to disagree on that. I apologize that you took it that way.

But, I do think your situation is pertinent to this discussion. People seem to be a bit upset over a CDG. Why? Should the DM have NPCs avoid CDGs like the plague? That's what we appear to be really discussing here. Is the group consensus here that "CDGs are ok as long as Raise Dead has no penalties other than the gold"? Should we house rule CDGs out of PBP as well?

Where do we draw the line to stop protecting the players from themselves? Is the community here not fun if a death occurs? Or is it only fun if the player considers he had culpability in the death outcome and it is not fun if the player considers that the DM was purely out to get him? If a different PC causes the death of the first PC, should the other PC be forced to chalk up the gold for a Raise Dead?

To me, what happens in the game happens. I might request that the DM reconsider something, but once the DM says "this is it", then "this is it". I like playing by the rules and I don't like changing the rules unless there is an extremely good reason to do so.

With regard to "fun", my PC Sheeva (and Mowgli's PC Feall) has been at -1 to all rolls (and a feat and some hit points low) for at least 3 months now because she should be at level 6 instead of level 5. I poke fun at renau1g every chance I get over it, but it is what it is. I don't want to propose a LEB house rule to change how PCs advance in level, just because our current in game circumstances has caused this issue. I just go with the flow (mostly because I can poke fun at renau1g over it ;) ).
 

renau1g

Visitor
Between the lack of allowing you to level and my calling Sheeva - Shava how many times? I'm surprised you stick with me and don't abandon the world to the Khyberites ;)
 

CaBaNa

Visitor
I'm pretty sure negative commentary on other peoples play is almost always offensive. I apologize you don't see it that way, and I apologize for informing you that agreeing to disagree does not an apology make. ;)

On the serious side KD, this proposal is not about the gold penalty, or who got who killed. It's to limit the length of the Death Penalty in order to bring it in line with RL play. The proposal doesn't negate, or make the Death Penalty less significant.

The proposal does not address CDGs. They are an off-topic side-note, and as such should not be the focus here. (I happen to think they are just fine, especially if the NPCs are evil and smart. They are not ok if the DM is "purely out to get" the PC, but that is a judge issue, not a worldwide issue.)
 

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