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What are your Pedantic Complaints about D&D?

dnd4vr

Explorer
IME, in a fight, 6 seconds is an eternity.
And what is your experience out of curiosity? 6 seconds in the wrong situation can certainly seem like it will never end. However...

D&D isn't literally meant to be (or at least never was in prior editions) a "blow-by-blow" simulation of combat. Enemies attack and parry, dodge and move for position, etc. It was assumed many exchanges were made and the attack roll came when an opportunity presented itself to really hurt your foe. Oftentimes, attacks "hit" but are ineffective or glancing. If it were meant to be more of a simulation of combat, when targets are hit they might double-over, grab at a stab to stop the blood, etc. and getting in the first "real blow" can mean your foe is stunned for the beat down. D&D doesn't model any of these things with each successful hit. Few people can take a real hit in a real fight and not react to the pain or injury in a fashion that makes them less effective afterwards.

As I wrote before, I don't think rounds should be a minute, but 10-20 seconds depending on your POV would be better in my estimation. Or a different system of movement and actions were a character is not doing as much in a 6-second round.
 

dnd4vr

Explorer
Luckily, all my comments come with a money-back guarantee!

Wonderful, now I am in the mood to watch Gladiator! I haven't seen it in a decade. Thanks a lot. :p

Of course, it brings back memories of the Fighter Tactics house-rules we made up, like Aggression (before 3E Cleave), Finesse, and Stunning Blow, which we got idea for from the movie LOL. Funny how so many house-rules ended up showing up in later editions. Hmm... :hmm:
 
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Charlaquin

Explorer
And what is your experience out of curiosity? 6 seconds in the wrong situation can certainly seem like it will never end. However...

D&D isn't literally meant to be (or at least never was in prior editions) a "blow-by-blow" simulation of combat. Enemies attack and parry, dodge and move for position, etc. It was assumed many exchanges were made and the attack roll came when an opportunity presented itself to really hurt your foe. Oftentimes, attacks "hit" but are ineffective or glancing. If it were meant to be more of a simulation of combat, when targets are hit they might double-over, grab at a stab to stop the blood, etc. and getting in the first "real blow" can mean your foe is stunned for the beat down. D&D doesn't model any of these things with each successful hit. Few people can take a real hit in a real fight and not react to the pain or injury in a fashion that makes them less effective afterwards.

As I wrote before, I don't think rounds should be a minute, but 10-20 seconds depending on your POV would be better in my estimation. Or a different system of movement and actions were a character is not doing as much in a 6-second round.
Do we really even need combat rounds to represent a specific, standardized amount of time? Frankly, I think it would be better to leave it abstract - a round could simply represent an exchange of blows, which might be anywhere from a few seconds to half a minute or more, as suits the narrative.
 

doctorbadwolf

Explorer
And what is your experience out of curiosity? 6 seconds in the wrong situation can certainly seem like it will never end. However...

D&D isn't literally meant to be (or at least never was in prior editions) a "blow-by-blow" simulation
My experience is fighting with melee weapons. Many attacks are attempted in 6 seconds. I’d guess...as many as 4 per second, but more usually 5-7 per 6 seconds.

Swords move quite quickly.

There are certainly times where all the actions of a turn, or the call and response of a full round, strain credulity. I’m just saying movement and attacks shouldn’t create that strain.
 

Arnwolf666

Explorer
I can quaff an ale as a free action, but need an action to consume a healing potion.
My pet peeve is potions shouldn’t even be useable in combat.

And I hate the concentration mechanic with a passion. Seems like something that belongs to psionics.
 

Monayuris

Explorer
My pet peeve is potions shouldn’t even be useable in combat.

And I hate the concentration mechanic with a passion. Seems like something that belongs to psionics.
Agree with potions. I also don’t think you should be able to pour one down an unconscious character’s throat. Most of my players seem to think that is a thing.

I’m ok with concentration, though. The take action to disrupt a spell is a classic trope.
 

Flamestrike

Registered User
I hate Concentration saves as mechanic. Too easy to forget.

I saw a cool House rule that ditched the 'make a save when damaged' rule, and instead imposed a rule that had you instead only make the Concetration save when casting while threatened (spell fizzles if you fail).

Thought that was pretty neat.

For minor pet peeves; the Trident.

It's a heavier, more expensive, and harder to use... spear with absolutely no reason anyone would ever use one.

In my games I allow people to use the hand(s) holding the Trident to Grapple. Instead of a free hand, you can snare them with the Trident.

Gives it some kind of benefit over the spear.
 

MNblockhead

A Title Much Cooler Than Anything on the Old Site
Interesting that most of the pet peeves shared here don't bother me much. For example, I agree that 6-seconds is an eternity in combat and you can do A LOT in six seconds when it comes to punches, movement, and sword play. BUT I would like to see many more spells taking longer than an action. And I think it is silly to be able to take something out of your bag as a free action.

But I'm happy abstracting things and being beholden to reality when playing a game.

What tends to annoy me in games have more to do with how mechanics impact play.

With D&D, as a DM, I what I still struggle with the most is planning for player-character magic. More than any other action, selecting spells and applying magic effects seem to slow down the game. Also, hen I was running my home-brew campaign, I found I that magic tended to surprise me and trivialize many encounters. It has caused me to stop running a home brew campaign and move to published material. Further, magic in D&D pushes the game into gonzo territory pretty quickly. I know that as a DM I can control what spells characters have access to, and have many other tools at my disposal, but I find it to be a lot of work that gets in the way of, and distracts from, the activity I most enjoy: building engaging scenarios and interesting worlds for players to create memorable stories with.

But, overall, I'm still greatly enjoying 5e after almost six years of play.
 

Charlaquin

Explorer
I think it’s in the spirit of the thread to point out that a lot of these grievances are nitpicks, not pedantry.
 

Tony Vargas

Adventurer
Interesting that most of the pet peeves shared here don't bother me much.
They're supposed to be examples of nitpicking over small details, rather than real problems like...
With D&D, as a DM, I what I still struggle with the most is
... unlikely to qualify as pedantic, unless you mean it ironically...
planning for player-character magic. More than any other action, selecting spells and applying magic effects seem to slow down the game. I found I that magic tended to surprise me and trivialize many encounters. Further, magic in D&D pushes the game into gonzo territory pretty quickly.
Nope, that sounds serious.

Totally off topic.

...to try to get back on topic, why is it called Faerie Fire? Everywhere else the game used American spellings. Why not Fairy?

Was Sustare just being pedantic?
 
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ccs

39th lv DM
Some of mine:

*6 second combat rounds.
I've solved this by stating that in games I run, round length varies by plot. In games I play in? I just don't worry about it.

*Ability score bonuses starting at 12 & progressing up to +5.
I greatly prefer the older range from 1e, where things (generally) capped out at stat 18/+3 bonus.

**Crit hits.
I HATE crits. More, I hate that only positive crits exist.

*Non-LG Paladins.

*In general, that there's a separate class for every word that "Magic User" used to generically cover back in 1e. Wizard, Sorcerer, Warlock, Witch, War Mage, blah blah blah & so on. And yes, I thought it overkill in 1e to have both the MU & the Illusionist as separate classes. Some editions are worse for this than 5e. And at least 5e made the Warlock more than a 1 trick pony - even if many are still seduced to spamming EB.
 

Lanefan

Hero
Somewhat surprised to see more than one mention here of non-LG Paladins being a pet peeve, where my biggest gripe with them up until recently was the opposite: that they could only be LG.

Reason this was a problem was that their rigid codes etc. very much restricted what alignments/classes/character types other players could hope to play. With Paladins having more than one alignment option, a Paladin can be made to fit the party rather than the somewhat-tiresome reverse of the party always having to suit the Paladin.
 

Imaculata

Explorer
1. Dragon Alignments and breathweapons by color. Just because a dragon has a certain color, doesn't mean it isn't evil, and it doesn't mean it spits lightning/poisongas/ice instead of just fire.
2. Automatic Crossbows. Get that nonsense out of here.
3. Studded Leather Armor. What do the studs even do?
4. Elves and orcs. Yawn!
5. Classes that have boring new abilities (filler) at higher levels.
 

Bitbrain

Explorer
Just an observation, if the only switch between Fighter-Sux and Fighter-Roxtoomuch is +1d8 damage on attacks, you could ... make it +1d4/6?

And then your porridge will be just right.
I've tried that before. +1d6 doesn't help. They still seemed to be outshined by everyone else except the ranger.
 

dnd4vr

Explorer
Do we really even need combat rounds to represent a specific, standardized amount of time? Frankly, I think it would be better to leave it abstract - a round could simply represent an exchange of blows, which might be anywhere from a few seconds to half a minute or more, as suits the narrative.
Very true. The game could state that a combat round is the length of time needed for all participants to complete their actions, with the caveat that this is generally from 6-10 seconds, but can be longer as needed. But I have a feeling that for some others, this would be too willy-nilly.
 

Aebir-Toril

Explorer
Here is one more of mine:

1. Why does everything hate Elves and want to eat them? Are Elves delicious or something? I'm now considering making a homebrew setting where Elves are so delicious that it becomes comical. Oh, wait, there is one, it's called the Forgotten Realms.
 

Fenris-77

Explorer
What do the studs do?! You are a simple soul aren't you? The studs look COOL. And adding shiny metal accents to your black leather is what any righteous EMO elf ranger needs, right up there with eye shadow and a tortured back story. What do the studs do, honestly...:erm:

I think my personal fav came form a non-WotC release. Someone wrote some rules for a sword cane (which is cool, who doesn't love a sword cane?). It did a d8 blugeoning as a cane, or you could surprise the holy hell out of someone, reveal the hidden sword within, and do a d4. Surprise!!

About the round length. 6 seconds makes it possible to scale to minutes for duration reasons, which is helpful. The abstraction part is no less irksome that the above example where it's the time it takes everyone to do their thing. The longer that takes the more ridiculous it becomes that PCs doing quick stuff couldn't have done it two or three times. Anyway, I try not to squint to hard at the abstractions, it gives me a headache.
 

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