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4E Where was 4e headed before it was canned?

Parmandur

Legend
Ever had a DM ask for a series of swimming rolls guaranteeing a drowning process because you know he didnt know how to swim? I have nor is eyeballing the effect of multiple die rolls natural for most people.

This is what I think of when I think of DM improvising free from.

And in D&D land I think of "Just say NO" mentality being disguised because only magic can really do the extraordinary.
Literally every book WotC publishes pushes "Just say Yes" as their advice. The rules do not really recommend multiple die rolls per task, that's house rule territory there.
 

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
Well, the fact that we are talking about "I'm an Elf Wizard" pretend time, means that we are not necessarily constrained to strict realism, but narrative fidelity as judged by the DM and players is important.
AND the spell casting being one of ONLY defined ways to do something truly extraordinary out of combat to me.... CREATES / INDUCES / ENCOURAGES expectations of mundanity that doesnt even make sense in light of some of the combat elements.
 

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
The rules do not really recommend multiple die rolls per task, that's house rule territory there.
Easy to break actions in to multiple tasks... ok its combat arena but works - The movie Legalos attack on the Behemoth being split into multiple tasks resulting in multiple rolls.
 

Parmandur

Legend
Ad populum as an argumentative fallacy cannot beat it with a stick
It is not fallacious to point to a system working for people, when the question is "does this work for people?"

Yes, it works for people. Actually, for me, the interesting thing is to hear that some people find the 4E approach more freeform. That increases my understanding of where people are coming from slightly.
 

Parmandur

Legend
AND the spell casting being one of ONLY defined ways to do something truly extraordinary out of combat to me.... CREATES / INDUCES / ENCOURAGES expectations of mundanity that doesnt even make sense in light of some of the combat elements.
Magic is more constrained, because it is magic and has more parameters. Skill checks are way more open to possibilities.
 

Parmandur

Legend
Easy to break actions in to multiple tasks... ok its combat arena but works - The movie Legalos attack on the Behemoth being split into multiple tasks resulting in multiple rolls.
Sure, but again, that's house ruling: the DMG even recommends rolling as little as possible and just saying yes if there is a decent chance of success. The variant rules for auto-success are solid, for instance.
 

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
Magic is more constrained, because it is magic and has more parameters. Skill checks are way more open to possibilities.
No they are more locked down by assumptions of mundanity and lack of an ability to choose extra effort like an encounter skill power ... like spending a healing surge in 4e skill challenge note from the DMG2
 

Parmandur

Legend
No they are more locked down by assumptions of mundanity and lack of an ability to choose extra effort like an encounter skill power ... like spending a healing surge in 4e skill challenge note from the DMG2
That sort of assumption would be a table by table consideration: the rules certainly do not encourage that anywhere, and that has not been my observation of actual play.
 

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
I can choose to expend extra effort to achieve extraordinary effects via utility powers in 4e (and HS)... they allow reliable tactically selectable bursts of awesome. A 5e environment implies the non-magical are stuck with what they can always do since no where are they allowed that extra effort to make it reliable or extreme .... unless its via magic.
 

lowkey13

I'm sorry, Dave. I'm afraid I can't do that.
I can choose to expend extra effort to achieve extraordinary effects via utility powers in 4e (and HS)... they allow reliable tactically selectable bursts of awesome. A 5e environment implies the non-magical are stuck with what they can always do since no where are they allowed that extra effort to make it reliable or extreme .... unless its via magic.
...and increased and enumerated tactical options has what, exactly, to do with a more freeform style of play?
 

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
And that stuck with what you can accomplish "at-will" is very much a limit... even with a certain measure of wuxia interpretation going on.
 

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
...and increased and enumerated tactical options has what, exactly, to do with a more freeform style of play?
Show me an official magic system in D&D that is free form and we will talk about it till then relegating non-magic types to freeform is putting them in second fiddle land.
 

Parmandur

Legend
I can choose to expend extra effort to achieve extraordinary effects via utility powers in 4e (and HS)... they allow reliable tactically selectable bursts of awesome. A 5e environment implies the non-magical are stuck with what they can always do since no where are they allowed that extra effort to make it reliable or extreme .... unless its via magic.
The DC system and Advantage/Disadvantage provide pretty good reliable results in actual play.
 

lowkey13

I'm sorry, Dave. I'm afraid I can't do that.
Show me an official magic system in D&D that is free form and we will talk about it till then relegating non-magic types to freeform is putting them in second fiddle land.
So, nothing.

This is just a continuation of the old, "I want more martial options like 4e" edition warring.

Gotcha.
 

Parmandur

Legend
Show me an official magic system in D&D that is free form and we will talk about it till then relegating non-magic types to freeform is putting them in second fiddle land.
This is counter-intuitive: if Magic was freeform as well, it would be unlimited in power and scope. The rules for Magic are a limiting factor, and magic fails far more often in my experience than Skill rule usage.

Free-form = power in D&D.
 

Parmandur

Legend
You ignored the last part there was an AND on it
Not really: given the way the numbers work, that is not necessary. Ability Mod + Proficiency/Expertise + maybe Advantage allow some pretty huge things. Certainly more reliably over a full game day than Magic does.
 

lowkey13

I'm sorry, Dave. I'm afraid I can't do that.
This is counter-intuitive: if Magic was freeform as well, it would be unlimited in power and scope. The rules for Magic are a limiting factor, and magic fails far more often in my experience than Skill rule usage.

Free-form = power in D&D.
Yep.

My goodness, does he even know how tired this debate really is?

It was tired back when people were arguing about whether or not having a Thief class with enumerated skills meant that other characters could no longer hide.

It hasn't gotten any more interesting, but I have to say that I rarely see people argue that more enumeration = freestyle. That's pretty new to me.
 

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