D&D General What if High Level Was Only in a Supplement


Just a random thought based on some things other folks have said in other threads:

Would it bother you if the D&D core books did not include high level information. By "high" here I mean 11+ or 13+. So your PHB, MM and DMG would not concern themselves with play at those higher levels, and you would have to buy a single volume of high level character options, rules, items and monsters. Would that work for you? Would it be desirable? Would you like to see high level stuff removed from the "core" game since "no one plays high level"? Or do you think adventures and supplementary material should emphasize high level play more? Or is it pretty much good where it is at?

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Jedi Master
As someone who runs campaigns that regularly go to 20th level, I prefer to have it in the core books. I don't need adventures or supplementary material for high level play, as at that level adventures must be tailor made to the specific group's goals and capabilities to create a fun and memorable story. Tier IV is where I as a DM have the most fun, since I can go wild building challenges and encounters and love to see how my players respond in ways I'd never imagine.


I'm fine with the game including high-level material. But I'm also fine with the game not providing additional high-level material past that, under the belief that players who run at that level are capable of making up their own stuff (or can acquire material elsewhere and not need WotC to provide it for them.)


"No-one plays high level" is not a truism from my point of view. I've had multiple campaigns in, if you like, the third tier of the game. Some more successful than others.

I wouldn't want a return to the game being split like you suggest. Just give me the game! Decide on the power and complexity you want to support, build those into your design as hard assumptions, and give me the game in a book.


I tend to end campaigns in the 10-15 range so I might need some of it. I also make use of some high level stuff when making bad guys who are high level facing the PCs at mid levels. I would not want to buy a book for that.


Your premise that nobody plays at the level is flawed. While fewer play at that level, there are still a large number of games played at levels 12 and above - all the way up to 20. If there were better training for DMs to help them understand the challenges and proven approaches for running games at those levels, I think they'd be even more popular.

Regardless - I would not want things separated out in the way you describe. It would be cumbersome to look up materials for higher level plan and lower level play in multiple sources. Further, I see no advantages in breaking it into two locations. All it does is create unnecessary barriers.

In prior editions (3/3.5) we saw an Epic Level Handbook released later in the edition that governed character advancement beyond 20th level. I found that to be an annoying split to have to work between. However, as many of the mechanics in that book, while continuing existing classes, were separate from the mechanics of the classes - so it wasn't too annoying. Here, where you're diving a cohesive whole down the middle for no real reason... it would be more annoying.

Voidrunner's Codex

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