D&D 5E Why the claim of combat and class balance between the classes is mainly a forum issue. (In my opinion)


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To get the default play experience from 4th edition you could not use Mind's eye.

why not? I still have powers, and push and pull and slide and mark and AEUD and I still have 1/2 level to everything and more uniform HP... the last 4e game I played in we used minis for only the end of each dungeon fight....

infact does that mean you can't get the default 4e experience with play by email or play by post?

does it matter if I do this:

P1 My fighter does come and get it and pulls 4 goblins to him and attacks...
P2 My ranger uses his at will that lets him attack everyone in burst 1 with a basic attack (forget the name) center on fighter

do we need minis for that?
 

this whole conversation has taken so many odd turns, my orginal one off antidote has been pulled apart and insulted and my players insulted, even my DM skill called 'dumb'...

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3e were some of the quickest combats we ever saw... we had 5-20 min average in 2e as well and 60ish sounds right for most of 4e... but I think we had a lot more less then 5 min fights in 3e then more then 60 in every edition combined...

3e had a lot of fights end before everyone took there first turn (witch almost never happened in 2e and only happened 5 fights in 4e...and those were in a row...)

Honestly, I have NO idea how that is even possible. It takes us longer than 5 minutes in 3e to roll for initiative(after all, you needed to set up the minis on the battle map, the DM had to draw the room, put down all the monsters, describe the monsters, deal with monster knowledge rolls, roll for initiative for each monster, looking up their individual modifiers. Then you'd need to ask every player for their initiative and write them down. If you were using a magnetic init board, you'd need to reorder the participants in order of initiative to make it easier to run the rest of the fight.)

I can only assume you fought combats with an EL way below your level or you only played low level games. We had one character who was a Whirling Dervish who took nearly 10 minutes to play his turn alone(I attack with my first attack, I power attack for....let's go with 3. It is my primary weapon, I currently have Greater Magic Weapon on it so it's now a +4 weapon, also the Bless bonus, and...yes, I have flanking from my current position so that makes my bonus...+17, that means I get a 34 to hit. That hits? Alright that means I do 1d8+12 +6 for the power attack, +4 for the Bard song, +1 for Prayer, ok, that's 22 points of damage. I then move to here, which means I have to Tumble past 3 enemies. Watch me make my 3 tumble checks: 22, 17, 18. Those all make it. Now my second of 5 attacks...)

well it sounds like you did a lot of things we didn't... no minis were used until the last 6 months of 3.5... so no battle map no minis, just DM describe and say Roll intiative... then I would lay my D20's out with the modified number (at higher level 2d10 for numbers of 20) then I would say "Anyone before my XX" and if so we would jot down (sometimes me sometimes another PC doing it) then they would tak there action... set up and roll less then a minute most of the time...
we used to throw CR 15's at single digget level parties... we almost never did low EL...

wow our devish normaly was more of I roll X +y hit Z didthat hit? yes, ok my damage was XXX, I move and tumble past and made the DC, then rolled X +y hit z did that hit? way under tne minets... did you guys really call every bonus every time? Most times we just called I hit an X....

I don't belive anyone with any experience with there characters takes so long...

There's no way my players would stand for that. After all, how do you know which squares are threatened? How can you place yourselves in a way that prevents the enemies from running past you without provoking opportunity attacks? How do you know if you hit 3 or 4 orcs with that burning hands? Ask the DM? What if they screw you out of one of your free attacks by forgetting the exact location of all the enemies and PCs? What if you say "I'm moving beside the barrel" and the DM assumes the wrong side of the barrel?

The rules clearly stated which squares people had to be in to be threatened and where they could move to without provoking. These things were important to my players. Failing to follow the rules precisely could mean life or death if an extra enemy could be included in an AOE or an opportunity attack could take place.

Minis were needed for these situations to make everything fair.

One of our DMs used to just say "Anyone higher than <the highest initiative rolled by an enemy>?" Until someone pointed out that knowing the highest initiative of the enemies could give the players an unfair advantage since they'd know how many of them get to act before the enemies do and change their tactics accordingly. This resulted in the "DM writes down everyone's initiative and calls them in order" method.]

I'm not entirely sure how they survived that. Though, CR being a really poor judge of difficulty, I can understand some of this being possible. However, it was my experience that using an encounter with EL more than 5 above the Average Party Level was instant death for all but the most min-maxed group.

Yes .. like this "Can I make an OOP?" "Can I stop this attack?" "Can I stop that movement?" "How many orcs can I hit with my burning hands?"


accidents happen you just keep going...

we mostly just played and trusted eachother...

even in 4e we run some battles without them... and it is much more mini heavy...



we never saw that problem...


I once saw a set of 9th level PCs down a CR 24 dragon with 1 spell...



we just add them and go...





you know, that is normally something I disagree with, but for once I can honestly say "We play VERY different games"
[sblock=comment]now let me cut here...
I once saw a set of 9th level PCs down a CR 24 dragon with 1 spell...
it was a single antidote responding to his antidote

I'm not entirely sure how they survived that. Though, CR being a really poor judge of difficulty, I can understand some of this being possible. However, it was my experience that using an encounter with EL more than 5 above the Average Party Level was instant death for all but the most min-maxed group
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Yeah, most of my players don't trust DMs. They don't forgive DMs their mistakes. I had to have the entire rules memorized from beginning to end because any mistake would be pointed out to me quickly and with a tone that says "Seriously, why are you the one DMing if you don't even know the rules?"

It would cause an argument that would take too much time away from the game. A rough example would be:

"How many Orcs can I hit with my burning hands?"
"2"
"Wait. A burning hands is a 15 ft cone. That means it affects 1 square then 2 squares then 3 squares in front of me. You said last turn that there were 3 orcs in melee with the fighter who is 20 feet away from me. You said they were standing in a line. So that means if I put the 3 squares of my burning hands 15 ft away from me, I should be able to hit all 3. Plus, there's one in melee with me, that means I should be able to hit 4 of them, not 2."
(The DM gets flustered because they weren't keeping that close track of the relative positions of all of the enemies, they were just kind of winging it and figured 2 was a good answer to how many should be hit) "Uhh...yeah, I guess you can hit 4 of them then. Sorry."
"You know, maybe we should just put down some minis so we all know where the orcs are. It's situations like this that makes me not trust DMs."


I'm not saying it isn't possible. However, it seems out of the spirit of the game whose rules really want you to know the exact position of everything. I had so many of the above arguments whenever I tried to play without minis that I decided it was for the best.

Though, I currently run D&D Next without minis but I find it has very few rules that require you to know the exact position of everyone so there's been less issues. I'm really happy to go back to having a game with less fiddly rules because that way players can't spend all their time throwing them in my face.


I'm not saying everyone would see that problem. But it's indicative of the attitude of my players. And many players. I used to run Living Greyhawk about 3-5 adventures per week with the random people who'd show up for our games days and at GenCon. Ran an entire GenCon straight once, 7 5-hour long slots...which was exhausting, but I met a lot of players and many of them don't trust DMs and feel that DMs will do whatever it takes to kill them off. Especially random DMs that they haven't met before and are running only at a convention. The best way to put these people at ease was to follow the rules precisely to the letter to make sure they understood that everything was fair and above board.


Err....I guess it's always possible for the dragon to roll a natural 1 on his save. But my math kind of says that a level 9 character with an extreme amount of equipment(+6 stat booster) who started with a 20 in their prime stat and put all their boosts into it would have a 28 and could cast 5th level spells, and have a feat to increase their DCs by 1. That would put their DCs at 25. Given the 610 hitpoints of a Red Dragon of that CR, it couldn't be a spell that just does damage as none of them do 610 damage. The Dragon's Fort and Will saves are both higher than +25, so he makes the saves against all spells that would kill him outright on anything but a natural 1. Most of these spells allow spell resistance. The Dragon's spell resistance is 30. That means it is impossible for a level 9 character to even succeed on that roll. Though if they somehow boosted their caster level, they'd still need to make a natural 20.

So killing a dragon of that CR would require a natural 20 followed by a natural 1. That is a 25 in 10 thousand chance to happen.

Unless we are talking about a situation of DM Fiat where a PC said something like "I shoot a spell at that pillar over there, collapsing the entire building on the dragon. I'm sure a building does instant death damage." in which the CR and rules of the game don't actually matter, since it wasn't actually a fair fight between the PCs and the dragon.


As I mentioned, adding a bunch of numbers together isn't easy for most people. It's not very fast either. It's not super slow, but each person's turn at higher levels took at least a minute(and often 2-3 minutes) for the process of deciding what action to take, figuring out the bonuses they got, rolling multiple attacks one at a time, adding the bonuses to their die rolls, the DM looking up the defenses of the monster, figuring out exactly which monster was being hit, and minusing the damage from the monsters hitpoints and writing it down.

The enemy's turn often took a minute PER enemy to do.

When each person's turn takes a minute and 5 enemies take another 5 minutes, then battles took a minimum of 10 minutes per round. Even one round battles came in over the 5 minute mark.

Sorry, I'm just really trying to wrap my head around battles in 3.5e taking 5 minutes. I'm trying to understand how it is possible. In my 4 years of running 3.5e alone, having run about 15 battles per week for about 3000 battles total, the average always came out to 30-60 minutes with obvious outliers of monsters who died in one hit and monsters that were nearly impossible to kill taking over an hour.


This is the thing I'm most curious about. I want to know exactly how they are different. I really can't wrap my head around what a game where most of the battles were avoidable and were avoided on purpose by the PCs would even look like.

What would the PCs do? What kind of adventures do they go on that don't require killing monsters? Do they play business men who go to the office every day and fill out forms? What kind of jobs do they have that are that safe?

Why would anyone play with a DM they don't trust? that is so against my thoughts on what a DM is that we can't even hope to have any common ground... DO you trust them to have the right number HP on a monster, or do you track it?




My answer is and always has been "I've run games longer then anyone else, and have the highest amount of acceptance in the group... if you think you can do better... go try." and I mean it I would love for others to run games so I can play more...

My Tuesday night game has always run by "who ever the group wants" and if someone thinks they can do better we give them a shot... most of the time that doesn't work out... I've had most players back down once they find how hard it is to keep everyone happy behind the screen.


IN my game it would go like this:

"How many Orcs can I hit with my burning hands?"
"2"
"Wait. I think I can hit 4 based on your description."
"Lets just call it three then, and keep going:
"OK"



If you think you can do better run one...


Sometimes it happens, but you just do your best and keep going...

I guess...



of course not, and I'm not even saying you don't see it (((Take a lessen LFQW deniers))) I'm very happy your getting rules that will help you not run into it in 5th...


I run ALOT more then I play every year I run at 2 local cons, and I ran at gen con in 2002, 2006, 2008, and 2009 and found that opposite... infact most people after only a minute or two of talking and jokeing with me trust me... and I didn't think I was a people person


I've found quite the opposite... the best way is to always rule in favor or fun and speed even if it is against the letter or spirit of the rules or even both...

.
Cast wall of force in there throat and choke him to death... no spell casting without silent spell and no way to breath... it was awesome...

The dragon landed to throw his weight around and tell the PCs they had to do something for him or he would destroy the town... the wizard told him "Treat us with respect and we will consider an offer of employment, brag again and I will end you..."
The dragon laughed and said "Take your best shot a..."
"Wall of force"
"Wait, where?"

0 dice rolled, 1 spell and a great story,

I will await your thoughts on what it was...




Well I have seen half hour fights they were not regular.... I mean having 5-10 min fights happened when ever we had SoS or SoD spells in opening rounds...



OK, lets take one recent game, goblins have been stealing from farms for years, but they have grown more brazen last year and attacked some travlers... this last few weeks they sacked a full caravan.

game 1 PCs go to caravan site and track goblin tribe... they find a hobgoblin from the scar tribe is there... they are viscus and he took over and is bullying the goblins.
So the PCs walk in and tell the goblins there is a better way... they are going to kill the hobgoblin and feed them and give them a better way to defend themselves... once they win over a few goblins the hobgoblin runs rather then fight 1 on 6 (4 PCs, 2 NPCs).
PCs then go and explain to the town guard the goblins are a resource to be used... because they are evil they are predictable they are out for themselves... just make working with you what is in there best intrest... and it is way better to pay them to fight with you and train with you then to fight them...
TH PCs then went to track the hobgoblin to an advance camp of the Scar clan... they found it was within the area where Orcs normaly patrol... well if the hobgoblins are in orc territory then they must be enemies of the orcs (or atleast someone they can convince the orcs to fight.)
Game 3 started with the 2nd time we rolled initative when the PCs lead an Orc/Goblin/Townguard assault against the Scar clan... they are smart though, so most Hobgoblins surrender or flee when bloodied... they aren't here to throw away there lives....

I am guessing that [MENTION=5143]Majoru Oakheart[/MENTION] will regard this as non rules-compliant. That's certainly my feeling - while I don't know the ins and outs of Wall of Force in 3E, I would not have adjudicated the spell in the way you describe if GMing AD&D. In particular, given that a Light spell used to blind allows a save, at a minimum WoF should also. (Though I don't even think it can be cast inside a living creature - much like Create Water in the lungs not being legal.)

http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/wallOfForce.htm

he was within 25ft+5ft per 2 levels (way closer really)

he had line of sight (the dragon was talking and you could look in it's mouth...)

The wall is anchored on all sides (the sides of the throat)

I'm not sure you can argue if it works RAW or not... but I could have had ways around it... I could have done a lot different. However when the whole table cheered and my jaw dropped, I was pretty inclined to give it to him.

[sblock=comment]Now that was my explanation, not that I felt it was 100% by the book or an argument winner, but that
I'm not sure you can argue if it works RAW or not... but I could have had ways around it... I could have done a lot different. However when the whole table cheered and my jaw dropped, I was pretty inclined to give it to him
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Whereas any group I've ever played in would pelt the player with dice for being a dick. There is absolutely no way that that is rules compliant either by RAW or ROI.

But it does show nicely why some people might think casters are overpowered. ;)

But yeah as a player I would be very disappointed in that game and as a DM that would not happen.

even if you don't like the idea, and disagree with the ruleing, what is the harm in trying? and why would your group go to physical violence over it?


ok, I'm at a loss here... why is it bad?

outcome 1 (I disallow it from working) PCs must now fight a much more powerful dragon, and weaither win, lose or run

Out come 2 (one I choose) PCs get a cool nitch in there belt and we keep going...

Outcome 3 (I find loop hole to stop it) we loose X amount of game tiem where X is me pouring over books...


what out come is better for the game then Boom... nice trick now the game keeps going??

According to the SRD it needs to be vertical, so it can't fit into a creature's throat. It must be unbroken, so it can't cross the skin of the dragon. It says it is in square ft. I'd definitely rule that the shape always has to be square. I'm sure other people wouldn't, but my reading is that you get to choose the amount of square feet and get a vertical square or rectangular wall.

You could look in it's mouth, that's for sure, but I'd surely say you couldn't see into its throat unless a dragon's neck is just one big hollow tube.

At best, I'd allow you to put it inside its mouth as sort of a lozenge. It would take split timing to estimate the exact right size of the wall to not cross or touch any part of the dragon. Which would be even harder if the dragon was talking and therefore moving its mouth open and closed.

Also, a wall of force doesn't have to be anchored. Rather it's the exact opposite, it doesn't say anything about anchoring it, it can't move and it stays wherever you put it. Assuming the dragon could open its mouth slightly wider than it was when the spell was cast, all it would have to do is open it wider and move its mouth away from where it was located when the wall was created.

Plus, purely in a "Rules as Intended" way of thinking about it....the spell wasn't designed to kill anyone, that much is fairly apparent. It's a level 5 spell, but using it in the way described makes it much more powerful than some 9th level spells. Plus, it's way more versatile since it can now be used as a guaranteed no dice rolled kill on almost anything you can see in addition to being a wall spell. That means it fails my standard "Are you attempting to cheat the game?" test.

The general test I use to determine whether to allow something weird is a standard "Balance Insanity Test". Basically, I compare the action you are attempting to the standard options available. If your suggestion seems to be much more powerful than other options at its level and it is repeatable then I deny it outright if only for purely balance reasons. I don't want to run a game where all battles are decided by the same spell over and over again. It's boring and removes all the suspense from the game. After all, from that point onward EVERY spell of 5th level or higher would be prepared as Wall of Force.

Unfortunately, players LOVE situations where they win in one hit. After all, its their job to find new, awesome ways to win with no effort. That's the reason for my Balance Insanity Test...and the reason they'd all prepare Wall of Forces as all their spells for the rest of their lives. But what players THINK they want and what actually makes the game fun for people are two different things. Will they cheer that they just found an way to beat an impossibly powerful monster? Sure, after all, the point was that it was impossible and they just managed to do the impossible. Will the game be fun for them 10 sessions later when they've defeated every encounter since then with it? Unlikely. They'll complain about being bored with combat and how easy it is to win, so why bother having them?

Sometimes you need to say no in order to keep a handle on things and prevent them from going completely crazy. Otherwise, you'll end up like a Rifts campaign I ran once where the group literally had 500 long ranged fusion missiles mounted on a building that could all be fired at once or at 500 separate targets. The campaign got to the point where they refused to leave their building because it was the safest place in the world. If I sent enemies against them, they'd hit "THE BUTTON" and destroy them utterly. They had infinite money because I let them use their telemechanics power actually add money to their credit cards. The game ended because it was boring for me to run and there was nothing left on the planet that could defeat them.

it was vertical... up and down...

It didn't cross the skin, it filled the throat..


I could see that but I disagree I see no flaw in filling a round hole with it...


they said a small or mediam creature can be swallowed by it... so it is big enough to be a passage way and can be blocked...

I don't really care I thought it was cool at the time,,,

seems like an OK ruleing... but would take WAY too much time at the table for me...


I figured it could not and choked 'hanging' in place...

I only see it as cheating if you get something you shouldn't all we got was a funny story....


very good general rule, and I do so as well a lot of the time...

I don't see that slippery slope here the circumstances where rather uniqe... so no worry about wall of force spams... it really only works as a surprise attack on a huge target that is staying on one place and yapping...


I agree the players loved it, but they didn't consider it a new go to tactic... although many levels later we did see it used again on one of the 7 tarrasques they had to stop...

could not agree more...

so let them have one or two big impossible victories but don't let them make it a habbit...


and I do... heck sometimes I even say no to basic things...


sounds cool, I would have had enemy troops rift or teleport right into the bulding and take it over and make the PCs fight to reclaim it... then I would have the people who did it write humilateing things on the walls and wrech something the PCs cared about "You did what to my game system?" then teleport out... most likely the PCs would track them down... but I can't see a long run in the game...

It would be the same for us. And the reason people would dislike it is because it is CHEATING in a rather obvious and large way. I always think "If this was any other game than D&D and someone pulled this crap would we allow it?" Like, say we were playing Monopoly and someone said "I move my car to Boardwalk because I rolled a 6 and when I roll a 6 I can move wherever I want to." I'm guessing everyone at the table would laugh, and say NO! If we were playing street hockey and someone knocked the puck into someone's driveway and into their basketball net and said "That's one point for our team, I got the puck in the net!", we'd all laugh. If we thought for one second that the person was serious, we'd likely be too dumb struck over the stupidity to even speak.

To me, this is the exact same situation. The game is designed in such a way that it is impossible for a level 9 party to defeat a CR 24 dragon. The game purposefully doesn't give you abilities that are capable of harming the dragon. In fact, half the rules of the game are literally designed specifically to make sure PCs at a certain level can only fight monsters close to their level. Then someone comes along and says "I'd like to try something that the rules specifically say is impossible that would allow me to win when the game says I can't."


Nothing wrong with this option. If the monster was put into the game expecting a fair fight, then let them fight fairly. If you assumed they were going to run, perfect. They can run. If the intent was that the PCs would need to negotiate and battle was guaranteed death...well, that can happen too.


As I've said, this harms the future of the game. It becomes a trick they can try again to defeat other creatures. Maybe ones you actually care if they survive or not. It also makes the PCs rather brazen. How are you going to act when you defeated a CR 24 dragon with one spell without rolling? You are now the ultimate badasses. No one can ever threaten you again, no matter how powerful they are. Just wait for them to open their mouth and throw in a wall of force.

Not to mention the treasure. A dragon of that size should have huge amounts of magic items and treasure according to the rules. +5 swords lying all over his lair would be the common thing. Do the PCs now get all that? Is it good for your game for the PCs to have level 24 treasure at level 9? If the treasure isn't there, then why? Will the PCs now go in search of it? With enough spells, they can certainly divine its location.

Even if you don't allow the trick to work again for arbitrary reasons(and can convince your players that it doesn't work again), the addition of those magic items or to gold to buy or craft magic items of that level will clearly make them WAY more powerful than the game expects them to be for their level.

Not to mention the XP for defeating a CR 24 creature should be so great that they'd all go up a couple of levels from the one battle. If you have more battles planned for the rest of the adventure, does that now invalidate them because they are too low level to harm the party?


It might only take 30 seconds or a minute. I figure that's ample time to decide whether the party gains 3 levels and millions of gold with one spell or not.
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this is were it started to feel like attacks and not just different ideas,
pulled this crap
[/sblock]

Heck, "I cast a spell at the dragon" seems a lot like saying "Roll initiative, we're starting a fight. Let's see if I get my spell off before the dragon acts." Which, in the cast of a CR 24 dragon it is almost guaranteed that the dragon goes first and kills the caster before he finishes the words for the spell.


I'm not looking for a funny story when I play a D&D game. Well, I am, but the funny stories are told outside of the game. The game itself is meant to be as "realistic" a simulation of living in a fantasy D&D world as possible.

This same thing likely would have happened at our table. Someone would suggest using a wall of force to choke the dragon. We all would laugh, saying how stupid that would be if it actually worked. I'd laugh as the DM that someone would think I'd allow them to break the game like that. I'd say "Roll for initiative then if you are going to attack the dragon. There is no surprise round because you can both see each other". Then the player would say "No, I'm just joking. I know that dragon would kill us...I don't want to die."

Then we'd all tell the story of how it would have been funny if the DM allowed it and they'd have gone up 3 levels and gotten a million gold and been the most powerful people in the world. But it would stay just that, a funny story about how the DM was smart enough not to allow it.

[sblock=comment]now this really started to get into it...
We all would laugh, saying how stupid that would be if it actually worked.
But it would stay just that, a funny story about how the DM was smart enough not to allow it
so I am not a 'smart DM' because I let it work, and the game was 'stupid because it worked':erm:[/sblock]

My feeling would be that while this Wall of Force thing is incredibly stupid, being neither
rules-compliant nor making sense in terms of the world-physics of dragon mouths, I'd be fine with a manipulation of the environment that did actually work in terms of rules & world-physics to defeat a much
higher CR foe. Collapsing the ceiling on top of a monster, for instance (which might kill it, or might just slow it down), or using a magical elevator to cut a large monster in half, as once happened in my game.

being creative and using abilities in new ways is not only not cheating... it is a fun way to play...

is like saying "When I roll Arcana high enough I can cast any spell I want... so I use wish at level 2" totally not what happened



another great example of WHAT THEY DIDN"T DO...


closer... the rules say what happen when you can't breathe... everyone knows you can choke to death if something gets lodged in your throat. I have the ability to make an unmoving object that blocks just about everything... if I create it in his throat he will choke to death...

it can, or you could roll with a fun scene and keep going...


well as the guy who ran almost 18 more levels after that I will tell you none of that happened...although the arragent wizard was more arragent until he got put in his place a few levels later...

well no one even asked, and I hadn't created his hoard, just the ring of wizardry level 2 he was wearing and that was the treasure they got...


they got 1 ring out of it...

I used the rule that said some encounters are easier or harder and just gave them each 2,000xp and kept going.

I've never let the PC ever gain more then 1 level a night... and there was no gold there...so not what happened...

We have had a few players over the years that tryied to do those things(spam cool trick until they just become common tacktics) most learned that just because we let cool things go doesn't mean you can just do it whenever you want even if it doesn't fit.

but that didn't happen the only time they tried this trick again was at epic level Vs a hoard of Tarrasque...and even then only on 1 of them.

I didn't think anything on a dragon was anything like a human...

it was on all fours with his neck out so not 20 feet off the ground, but ground level with PCs



lets double check here... my way game went on WITH NO KNEW PROBLEMS and everyone had a fun day. Your way we would make up a ref save and most likely have a hard fight no one wanted... and atleast 1 PC could have died or the whole game could have TPKed when it was one of the highest level games we ran and one of the most fun... in retrospect with all that you still can't see I made the right call?



when someone declairs an action we normally roll initiative AFTER the action is made... you start the fight with X then we roll init....


we are just looking for fun.

OK, and just to double check... why? I mean if you can't ever try something out of the box why have a DM to begin with?

nice shadow insult... I must not be a smart DM... yup totally dumb of me to run a game for years that everyone loved to play...how could I be so stupid...



OR, and just throwing this out there, maybe you have huge epic battles, and little skirmishes and everyonce in a while (once every 2-3 levels) one big OMG moment where they pull off something huge... and because no one abuses it and they only come up organicly no one tries to 'just make you laugh'


so in your mind, my epic red dragon who was going to be an important NPC and had stats AND A NAME was someone I wanted the PCs to kill? and at some point I am going to have some NPC more important? An entire adventure changed mid moment basedon this the whole game went in an unexpected direction... it was not the way I saw the scene going...

I dicided that the story the PC wizard told me was entertaining and fit the world, and that I could deal with it, and everyone at the table agreed... no one AT THE DAMN TABLE agreed with you that alone should make that rueing right at that table...



I didn't avoide using them... they got a gold dragon patron around 12th level (who had paliden levels no less) and they fought 3 other dragons after this one in more 'normal' circumstances...

so instead of rolling with it and finding away to have fun you got frustrated, well my example was a lugh and keep going... but insult MY intelligence and think I did something wrong when I got better results... interesting...

I just figure "if this were a movie, and something has to happen to be interesting what would it be." I even gave you an idea it took me only a minute to come up with...

Alll it tells me is you don't like thinking out of the box you want everything to run as expected and Players need to go with you or walk.

From SRD:
"
[h=3]Suffocation[/h] A character who has no air to breathe can hold her breath for 2 rounds per point of Constitution. After this period of time, the character must make a DC 10 Constitution check in order to continue holding her breath. The save must be repeated each round, with the DC increasing by +1 for each previous success.
When the character fails one of these Constitution checks, she begins to suffocate. In the first round, she falls unconscious (0 hit points). In the following round, she drops to -1 hit points and is dying. In the third round, she suffocates.
"
CR24 red dragon has Con 31, so he can wait 67 round before being in danger of dropping (31*2+5 for (+15 modifier)
Therefore the Big Red could wait out the spell choking him. Also if PCs are sniping him from safe distance all out defense would be a logical choice.
Also considering high INT(24) the dragon may well be aware of "tracheotomy" and has some idea how to go about it.
Now I do not dislike what you did, the players had fun, felt clever and did not get a disproportionate reward out of the incident. I comes down to my believe that every table have its own style to some extend and it is up to the individual GM to customize his/her game to the group.

I totally could have looked all that up in a book... But instead just rolled with it since you agreeed it worked out Ok I'm not sure what your point was... Nor am I sure what outcome is better then "we had fun and it was one of our most fun campaigns"




Edit: if forced to put mechanic to it today I would rule be could not hold his breathe and immditaly start makeing con checks... I could see an argument eaither way though... So at best I would start makeing checks on a held dragon well pcs ran or dog piled or buffed

The point I was trying to make that different groups will handle it differently, since fun can be derived in different ways. You know your group and there was an understanding that this trick is one time thing. On other tables such a ruling would have been an open season invitation.
Heck, in D&D lore we have Flame (since Dungeon #1) a dragon who has a contract to get chain resurrected.
So the chain of events:pC kill dragon, two days latter dragon came back and it has brought some friends. TPK ensues. This may be perfectly valid on same tables.
There are multiple ways spells can be creatively used with DM adjudication.
Cast a silent image of a Medusa head, creature that does not disbelief think they have turned into stone.
Stone shape- encase an enemy's head into stone, no SR no saving throw.
Using the major/minor creation spells to make enough contact poison (such as black lotus extract a vegetable matter) to kill an army.
and so on.
Some groups may find a game of clever thinking saving the day enjoyable, others may engage in constant one upsmenship with the DM and have fun. Once again, I am of the believe that a group should trust their DM and s(he) in part should feel free to deviate from the RAW if that enhances the enjoyment of the game. IME the rules are good starting point, a common base if you will, from which the individual group deviate making the game their own. I do think there should be an example play style, but limiting to only that style is an unrealistic expectation.

For example, I enjoy low magic game, where the PC are saving their resources for the "bad times". A wand with 10 charges may last 3+ levels before being depleted. At the same time I like the idea oscillating challenge as I see it in 2e- "run from the wolfs to fight the bear". That is the PC will occasionally get 1-2 use items that are very powerful, but cannot be replaced without going in a long quest if at all. For example the dying breath of a god of war trapped into a specially made crystal sphere, which when broken acts as a "hellball" epic spell. A good thing to have as a back up, but once you use it you are out.
Not the standard approach to gaming, but it works for my table.

tl;dr: sometimes it is better to ignore the rules and just have fun, but acknowledging when you do so is good policy in forum discussions.

On the Wall of Force in the Dragons Throat, killing it:

It's an awesome new idea, so I'd allow it the first time as a reward for creativity, because it would be fun.

But I'd say, "That's awesome, I am going to allow an auto-crit this one time. You have tremendous luck, hitting the dragon precisely at the point where his mouth is open to the maximum, and the dragon panics rather than think it through. But next time you try this, you're going to have to roll, and roll well, to pull off the same trick".

And then in the future if the player tried it, I'd make them roll against a rather high AC.

A wall of force can't move. The dragon just has to open its mouth extra wide and back up.

This would be a clever tactic and I would probably let the player do it, but I would never allow it to be an auto-kill. If I did, the wizard would then go around casting wall of force to kill everything that breathes. I'd say you could use this trick to buy yourself a round in which the dragon can be attacked with advantage and can't use its bite attack or breath weapon; or you could ready the spell and use it when the dragon tries to use its breath weapon, negating it. It's a smart move, not a guaranteed win.

There's also the verisimilitude question: If this is a viable tactic, why hasn't anyone ever used it before? If they have, why are there any ancient dragons left in the world? And if there are ancient dragons left, why would any of them be so stupid as to open their mouths wide when talking to a wizard?

While I agree with the "not bloodly likely" crew on the Throat of Force trick, I have to point out a correction:

The spell says the Wall must be anchored on all sides - in this case, the throat. Ergo: the Wall is attached to the throat of the dragon and moves with it, OR the wall is immobile and the dragon can't move without tearing his own throat out. If the dragon is capable of simply moving away from the wall, then by definition the wall wasn't "anchored" to anything and couldn't be cast in the first place.
No, it doesn't. Some of the other "wall of" spells require an anchor point (wall of stone must be supported by existing stone and wall of ice requires an anchor), but wall of force has no such requirement. You can create it floating in mid-air if you want. The only requirements are that it must be a) unbroken and b) vertical.

The only wall spells that you could conceivably anchor to the inside of a monster's throat are wall of ice and wall of thorns. But when trying to block a red dragon's windpipe, neither ice nor wood is a terribly effective obstacle.

With regards to the Wall of Force.

The caster can form the wall into a flat,
vertical plane whose area is up to one 10-
foot square per level. The wall must be
continuous and unbroken when formed. If
its surface is broken by any object or
creature, the spell fails.


Won't work.

Edit: Also, the minimum size of that Wall of Force is going to be 90 sq feet which is larger than a dragons throat anyway.

so if the min wall of force is 90sq feet and you are in a 8ft high 10ft wide dungeon you can't use it because it would only be 80sq ft??
and what does the words "up to" in this mean to you?

Is the wall continues and unbroken? Yes it only is taking up the 'air' space

Dragon also has a tongue, teeth, and the yoke that hangs at the back of the throat so these things could be seen as objects and obstruct the wall from being created.

Look, at the end of the day, someone can :):):):):):):):) all they like but it's not going to work unless good old DM fiat steps in,

Gmforpowergamers - the point you are missing is that your ruling of success while fun for your group would not be fun for everyone.

It worked for you. Great. At my table it would not. Nor would I find that a great moment if I was a player.

No one is saying you are wrong. Just that your tastes are not universal.
[sblock=comment] now this is where the convertation turns odd and people start to pretend this didn't start with

I'm not sure you can argue if it works RAW or not... but I could have had ways around it... I could have done a lot different. However when the whole table cheered and my jaw dropped, I was pretty inclined to give it to him
it was entirely based on AT THE TABLE REACTION...[/sblock]

I explain this slightly above in a post to someone else, but to summarize: There's a difference between being creative and completely bypassing the balance of the game.

The spell in question is a wall spell designed to protect people. There are other spells at the same level as it that do damage. Cone of Cold does 1d6 points of damage per level. At 9th level, it does an average of 32 damage with a save for half and allows spell resistance. There is a spell that can essentially defeat a monster immediately: Baleful Polymorph. It has a save to avoid the effects and allows spell resistance.

All the 5th level spells are supposed to be equal in power. That's the entire concept of balance. If wall of force kills people outright, it isn't balanced. Part of your job as DM is to enforce balance.

The spell isn't designed to hurt people at all. It includes a number of sentences in its description that were put there entirely to make sure people didn't try to use it to kill people. Those sentences were put there after people in 3.0e used it to kill people, DMs complained that it was overpowered when used that way and the designers took steps to make it more clear that the spell can't be used in a method that would harm people. Using a spell that the rules say can't hurt anyone in order to hurt people is pretty much the entire definition of cheating.


This is precisely what they did. The rules said "No, you can't do this", they proceeded to say "I do this, despite the fact that the rules tell me it's impossible. I mean, if you read it in a very specific way, it MIGHT work." They were just lucky that their DM was easily swayed by arguments.

In the same way that you MIGHT convince someone that putting a puck into ANY net still scores points. After all, the rules only specify putting a puck into a net. However, the players of the game have the common sense to interpret the rules in the most sane way possible. They know that the rules didn't take into account someone putting a puck into a basketball net however everyone can jointly agree that that's likely not what the designers of the rules were thinking when they wrote them.

The Wall of Force spell could TECHNICALLY kill someone even though it's readily apparent that that's not what the designers of the rules meant when they wrote up the description of the spell. In theory, the players of D&D should make the same logical assumption and say "Yeah, nice try to get around the rules."


Yeah, you can choke to death, but as everyone points out above, it would take many, many rounds to choke to death. More than enough time for a dragon to silent dimension door away from the wall and kill everyone.


I'm not sure how them running or continuing to negotiate with the dragon would not still be rolling with a fun scene. You are rolling in a direction that is equally fun while following the rules.


Wow...all I can say is...apparently your DMing style works because your players are pushovers. My players had the XP table nearly memorized. There would be a discussion on the spot about how much a EL 24 encounter was worth given that the chart doesn't show XP for encounters more than 10 levels above the Average Party Level(since the DMG says that encounters that high are impossible and should not be able to be defeated so the values aren't needed). I'm sure someone would be looking up the XP value for an APL 19 encounter and then making a case for how I needed to triple or quadruple it.

They also pretty much have the treasure tables memorized and would be wondering where the CR 24 worth of treasure was located.

After all, killing a monster comes with its just rewards. They beat a CR 24 fair and square(assuming I had allowed it)...where is there proper reward?

[sblock=comment]so here we go again with this...
all I can say is...apparently your DMing style works because your players are pushovers.
yes because people having a fun time playing a game must have something wrong with them... I remember one april fools day where all the mods had something about RPGs being series business...[/sblock]


Gmforpowergamers - the point you are missing is that your ruling of success while fun for your group would not be fun for everyone.

It worked for you. Great. At my table it would not. Nor would I find that a great moment if I was a player.

No one is saying you are wrong. Just that your tastes are not universal.

I'm not sure who decides when it fits and when it doesn't. I assume it is the DM. But then it really feels like playing a game of Mother May I instead of a game with tactics and skill:

"May I kill this monster in one hit today, oh great DM?"
"No, it doesn't fit here."
"How about now?"
"Alright, I'm amused enough that you win today without trying."


The more I read about your players the more I have difficulty believing they exist. Or this game exists.

I know that if I said "Hey, there is a hoard of Tarrasques" to my players, they'd be like "A hoard of a unique creature of which there is only one of in the entire universe? Also aren't they super high level? A hoard of them is likely WAY too high EL for our levels, what are you doing throwing them against us?"

Then again, they likely would have told me to screw myself when I threw a CR 24 dragon against them at 9th level. They'd be quickly telling me that if I can't play fair then what was the point in playing?

Most animals have throat muscles that can close their throats so that water doesn't go down them when they go under water and so they can keep their stomach acids in their stomach without it pouring out. I would think there has to be some things in common amongst creatures that exist.


Given a dragon of this size likely has 15-20 foot tall legs and a 10 foot tall neck, assuming it was "just standing there with its neck at a relatively neutral posture" it's head would be about 30 feet in the air unless it was laying on the ground and bending its neck downward to put it on the ground next to the PCs. Even then, the angle you'd see into its mouth would let you see only a couple feet in before the angle of its neck would be too steep to see further in.

Not that this part of the discussion really matters. You ruled that they could see in. Things like this really are up to the DM since there's no rules for it. I think it's a silly rule, but well within your rights.


The only reason you didn't have any problems with this ruling is because of how many rules you broke in order to make sure you didn't have problems and because your players lack of knowledge of the rules or lack of caring about XP and treasure. Basically, you had the perfect storm that allowed your mistake to go unnoticed. You decided to break the rules on XP, the rules on treasure, the rules on initiative, the rules on choking to death, and the rules on wall of force. Your players didn't care. Had even one of your players cared about the rules there would have been a problem. It likely would have ruined there experience and they could have had no fun.

It worked only because you had the type of players who don't care. To me, that's like saying "I ran out into traffic and leaped out of the way whenever a car was going to hit me. Luckily, because there was construction nearby all the cars were moving really slow. I managed to avoid all the cars and I had a great time. So I made the right call when I decided to leap out of the way." The right call was not to run into the traffic in the first place, it wasn't leaping out of the way of the cars. If it wasn't for the construction, you'd be dead.

To me, the right call is not to use a CR 24 dragon at all. Instead, you say "Alright, they are level 9 characters, they meet enemies that are close to their level so that when they fight them they have a chance to succeed. I want to use a dragon, but I'll use a CR 12 dragon. It's hard enough that they won't be able to kill it outright and there will be a good fight...but easy enough that the PCs are likely to win should they choose to fight." That way the PCs can now choose what action they'd like to take and all the actions are valid...without breaking the rules.


That's not what the rules for initiative say. It also is a extremely unbalanced rule favoring the PCs. It means that at high levels they can generally beat most monsters without ever rolling for initiative. I'm beginning to see how your players are able to take on such high level threats without worrying.


If this situation happened in a book, it would be considered a comedy. In a Discworld sort of way. I'm not really looking for my game to be a comedy.


The DM is there to come up with the story. He's there to play the NPCs(and react intelligently). He's there to interpret the rules whenever there is confusion. He's there to come up with interesting situations to put the PCs into(that are fair, balanced, challenging, and follow the rules). He's there to interpret when people try out of the box things and try to sort out the "obviously cheating" out of the box actions from the "interesting but fair" out of the box actions. He's there to determine when to allow something and when it unbalances the game based on the rules already in the game.


Running a game is easy. Running a game well is hard. I still make plenty of mistakes every game even though I've been DMing for 20 years now.

However, I've seen DMs who are used to their home group and the way they play get super flustered when DMing for more demanding players. A couple of GenCons ago I ended up at a table with a DM who obviously was used to house ruling everything and not looking up any of the rules. It was obvious to everyone at the table because he'd get at least one rule wrong each round of combat. We were playing in the GenCon Special for Living Forgotten Realms. These things are legendary for how deadly they are. You have to make sure to be on your A game when it comes to combat. You need to use your powers in the right order while simultaneously hoping the die rolls come out in your favor or you're going to have to pay for a Raise Dead at the end of the adventure.

We completely destroyed the adventure. It was so easy that we finished the whole thing an hour early and we barely took damage. The difficulty of one of the encounter was entirely dependent on a creature with Reach 4 who could make an Opportunity Attack against each PC once per round since the entire room was threatened by the creature while there was a deadly mist chasing the PCs around so they had to keep moving. Our DM had absolutely no idea how Reach worked or Opportunity Attacks. His lack of knowledge of the rules ruined the game for me since it wasn't fun to win so easily.

Though, it was readily apparent that he thought he was a GREAT DM who DMed for his friends all the time and they loved him. It's good to have a group of friends that love your DMing style. Don't lose them because you might not find any more like them.


You can have that same spread of encounters without using monsters that are 15 levels above the PCs. When I used an APL+5 encounter against my players, they'd be super scared, they'd be pulling out all the stops. They'd use every spell they have and likely one PC would still die. They'd have to bring him back to life but they'd feel like they accomplished the nearly impossible. It was obvious that I didn't give them the win, they'd EARNED it.


A rule that's been passed down from DM to DM in my area(and likely stated in a couple of Dragon Magazine articles on how to keep a reoccurring villain alive) is: If you want your NPCs to survive, never let the PCs see them....ever. If the PCs can see them, they'll likely come up with a way to kill them. Though, if you do let the PCs see the enemy, then the enemy must always have an escape route. If you don't follow those rules, you pretty much WANT the PCs to kill your NPC.

But beyond that, I assume you wanted him dead when you ruled yes to a spell working a different way than it was supposed to. It was just as easy to say no with no consequences at all:

You: "Yeah, the spell doesn't work that way, it can't be put into someone's throat"
Player: "Oh...alright. I don't do that then."

5 seconds worth of time, no changes to your planned adventure, no change to the fun your players would have had(assuming you already had fun things planned for them that didn't involve killing the dragon).


Here's the rub. I don't disagree that the ruling was necessarily bad at your table. I am saying you have a table filled with "beer and pretzels" style players. I'm saying that making this ruling in the grand scheme of DMing is bad. Especially if you were DMing for players you'd never met before. I'm saying that even at your table another ruling would have worked fine.


I don't plan adventures on the fly. I'm horrible at improvising. Mainly because I hate improvised adventures. They seem to lack a coherent story and seem shallow. When I plan an adventure, it needs to get followed...at least mostly. It can take some minor bumps and turns but when I spent the time to foreshadow the villain that the PCs were going to fight at level 15 when they were level 1....well, that foreshadowing is useless if the PCs find some way to avoid ever encountering the villain.

So, when players decide not to engage with the game at all and instead hole themselves up in a building and decide never to leave, I decide that the game isn't the game I wanted to run. To me, it's the same thing as showing up to watch a movie called Thor and never having Thor show up or even have the movie be about him. You feel ripped off because you went in expecting Thor and got something else instead.

I went in expecting to run the adventure I had planned. Instead I got an adventure where nothing interesting happened.

You obviously were perfectly fine running a game where your CR 24 dragon died in one hit like a chump. That was the game you wanted to run. I wouldn't want to run a game where that was possible.


You gave me an idea where the NPCs would be saying things like "See what you did to my adventure" or whatever it is you posted. The NPCs don't know anything about my adventure, they don't break the fourth wall. And they don't attack simply because I'm angry. It seems extremely contrived and bitter.


All DMs expect this. Some just expect different things and have different tolerances. If someone shows up to your game and kept insisting they had a plasma rifle and whenever you asked them when they did and they said "I shoot my plasma rifle at the enemies", it's very likely that you'd point out to them in short order that: 1. You were running D&D, 2. There are no Plasma Rifles, 3. Your character doesn't have a Plasma Rifle as you never agreed to give him one. If he kept saying it over and over again and refused to take no for an answer...it's likely that you'd either get frustrated at having to run the game for such stupid players and give up DMing...or you'd kick that player out of your group.

It could be argued that if you did so, you would be stopping a player who was simply thinking outside of the box(that box being the setting of D&D and the character creation rules of D&D) and expecting that player to go with you or walk.

By sitting down and playing a game, you all agree to rules. The rules create a box. Thinking outside of that box creates a situation nobody wants. We are just using a different set of rules.

I view certain actions as going TOO far outside the box. Figuring out that water harms the Fire Elemental and luring him out into the lake to fight him? AWESOME. You thought out of the box and get an advantage.

Saying "I cast Create Water over the Fire Elemental...water puts out fire, the Elemental is now dead!" is approximately the same thing as playing a video game and finding a spot inside the wall where the last boss of the game can't harm you and then defeating him. Did you win? Technically. Did you win within the spirit of the game you were playing? Not so much.

I disagree the game was SOOO unbalanced it didn't matter


It is also part of a DMs job to keep the game running in a way his players like... it's a game... about fun...


it was a one off creative use of a spell to end an adventure the PCs had already decided they didn't like...

or they said Hey It does X what happens when I use it in a way that it wasn't intended but should work?

still a bad analogy that makes no sense


I think I replayed way back when this started saying it wasn't RAI but it could be RAW and was most defiantly rule of cool...

this one I know... dragon could not teleport or D door or anything of the like... I had done out his spells in advance...


Because the PCs didn't want to do so it may be a bit hard to read... you know when they started a fight, and the table cheered that the PC in question had an idea...


not only did Manny have the tables memorized, he knew the formula for everything and could extend it no problem if that was what we needed.

it was double of X levels below so (I think) it was a 21 was double 18 or 19 then a 22 is double 19 or 20 and 24 is double 22 or 23..

most likely at the dragon hoard that they knew not where... because they didn't kill him in his home...




it never felt that way to us... infact it was pretty awesome most times..

OK, perfect you have now decided to make this not only insulting by saying I'm a bad or Dumb DM, but now call me a lier... any other shadow insults I missed?

The PCs were epic level at that point and the enemy was a guy who could wormhole between worlds, he had collected the tarrasques from different worlds and times and drop them on the PCs world to distract them so he could complete his ritual and become a new god... the PCs had a time limit, and decided saveing lives and stoping the Big Ts was worth it...


well they would not be the players at my table... I play to my player at the table not theretical DM hateing rules lawyers at another table somwwhere....

Darn straight. If your group likes the way you played it, then you played it right, and you're not obligated to defend yourself to anyone else.

FWIW, with my group, I would most likely offer the spellcaster a bargain: 1 point permanent int loss for a one-time use of the spell that went beyond the rules. Take it or leave it, that gives them a potentially interesting decision, and makes it so I don't have to tell 'em no directly.

thanks for the biology lesson, I didn't know that... but what do doctors see when they shine that light in your mouth? I just assumed down your throat




wait if I had different players my game would run differently is news to who?? of cource every table sometimes even night to noight at the same table is different... DMs need to make the game fun FOR THERE PCS




or more like, "I run games my table likes...and that changes based on the table"
.


so If I say "I punch the guard" you make me roll initiative?


or a funny scene in an otherwise seriuse book... or who knows no one scene makes a story...


I think he is a player who makes up the world and adventure and trys to move the game along in fun ways...

Agreed 100%

I run at cons all the time and at my FLGS and for new people... the best way to run any table is to the desires of the players....



so you didn't have fun... if you don't have fun it wasn't run well...



I had a whole adventure planed... it was ploted as A) PCs do what he wants (a fetch quest) or B they go fortify the town, and problably need to build an army to stop him... they said "Hey wait how about C and we do this..." and I rolled with it.

they ran and did completely different things then I planed.


yes if things were different they might of went different... so what it was an example of a one off joke everyone loved....

oh, ok... I find that good DMs have to improvise all the time...


wait... you write level 15 at level 1 and if the PCs don't follow your railroad you punish them and make them... and you hate when they go away from your planed events??? WTF? you insult my DMing that most people enjoy and then come back with one of the most hated DM tactics ever...

my games the movie title is made at the end not the beginning... maybe I planed thor but he died... so we got SIF...

I went in then make interesting things...



no I said run an adventure in there house for the game th PCs were making... you know what... I would have rolled with it and made a game you threw your hands up and rage quite... but you think me making a fun game would be bad DMING....

what??? your anology fails again... I didn't have someone jump genre...


um... not in my experience...

I would go with that.... the fun is how you get him there...


all that matters is if everyone has fun... I would rule create water would do 1d6+caster level damage myself... but in a game with guns we once used create water to make the guns not fire (like they had been in the rain and soaked)...

With regard to the wall of force trick, can we agree on one thing? If it worked for GMForPowerGamers and his group, and they had fun and there were no repercussions down the line, then they were doing it right. The rules do not support such a maneuver, and I think most games would suffer for it--I certainly would have issues if it happened in a game I was playing in, and I would never allow it in a game I was running--but every table rolls in its own way.

On another topic, GMForPowerGamers, do I understand that you're running a 3E game with the AD&D initiative system? How does that play out? Seems like that could be very interesting. Or do you just use it to determine who goes first when somebody declares an action that triggers an initiative roll?

it was also just a funny story but some Pelops jumped on it telling me how wrong it was...

Well 1st I upgraded to 4e years ago and haven't even played that in mo the we are talking about ten years ago...

2nd I was useing 3e roll d20 highest 1st

3rd we have always played if you start a fight that the other side did not see coming you get that one action before rolling I itative[/QUOTE]


[/sblock]
 

Mistwell

Crusty Old Meatwad (he/him)
I am still waiting for actual evidence, beyond personal anecdote, that this claim is true: " I'm talking about the myth that a lot of people somehow want all classes to be balanced when it comes to combat and damage." You also say in the thread title that it is " mainly a forum issue," as if the people posting in a forum are not also actual players reporting their experiences just like you are.

If you call something a "myth", you're saying it's not true. The only support for that claim is your own personal experience, which in the vast sea of D&D players in the world, is not meaningful for drawing such a broad conclusion. In fact, if anecdotal evidence were a good way to draw a conclusion, then taking a sampling of such anecdotes from around the world like you find in a forum would be the better way to do it. But, you were dismissive of opinions posted in internet forums, despite the fact they represent that diversity of geographic and age ranges someone should want if trying to genuinely determine if it's a real common experience or not.

Lots of people have said that in their experience it is true, from around the world, of various ages and group compositions. So, the moment that happens, it cancels out your own personal experience that it does not happen.

I am just not sure what the need is to tell others that their preferences, their experiences, are a myth. And that their opinions posted to a forum should be dismissed as not representative. You had to expect a more aggressive response to telling people that, right?
 
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billd91

Not your screen monkey (he/him)
I know 4e had a lot of things that made those fights long, but I often wonder if no one had fruit ninja/ Angry birds/ candy crush going and no one could be having a converstion without really talking on the phone, and no one could be internet surfing... would it play faster? Then again maybe I'm just a luddite

Back in the days of 1e, we had distractions like comic books, Dragon magazines, the old man's Playboys, and Rubik's Cubes. So it's not like we played concentrating like monks.
 

wow after arguments about the forge, and Dr who, and swashbucklers and creative spells and rail roads and length of combats... we can come back to the orginal point of the thread...


I am still waiting for actual evidence, beyond personal anecdote, that this claim is true: " I'm talking about the myth that a lot of people somehow want all classes to be balanced when it comes to combat and damage." You also say in the thread title that it is " mainly a forum issue," as if the people posting in a forum are not also actual players reporting their experiences just like you are.

see that's the rub... it's like when my mother says "You didn't do anything today" and I say "I shoveled, did the dishes, and took out the garbage" then she comes back with "That doesn't count those are all things you are supposed to do"
in that case "If you say nothing I did counts, then I did nothing"

in this case "People who claim to have these problems don't count, and once you take that away no one claims to have these problems..."

it's a variant on the 'No true Scotsman'


Lots of people have said that in their experience it is true, from around the world, of various ages and group compositions. So, the moment that happens, it cancels out your own personal experience that it does not happen.

I am just not sure what the need is to tell others that their preferences, their experiences, are a myth. You had to expect a more aggressive response to telling people that, right?

lets pretend there are 100 groups of roleplayers in the world playing D&D... if 45 of them have seen the class balance issue, and 20 of them talk about it and 25 don't, and 30 of them house rule it way and 15 don't, then one of the 55 groups comes on and say "I never had that issue" can one of those 55 tell those 20 talking about it that it isn't real?


lets try a different problems... lets say 100 people bought a new TV, and 45 of them found that the cable wires don't all work the same, some of them adjust it or only use some, so it works out ok, the 55 people who didn't notice the problem don't say "Hey your liying" do they? and if they recall the TVs and give you ones that don't have the problem you don't complain... weather you noticed it or not...


if 100 people eat at a new restaurant and 45 got sick, but only 20 talked about it would the other 55 say they are wrong or it isn't a real problem? Would the 55 get mad if the reasturant said "We changed our food so no one will get sick again" and start saying "But I liked the taste of the food when you got sick"?
 

Mistwell

Crusty Old Meatwad (he/him)
wow after arguments about the forge, and Dr who, and swashbucklers and creative spells and rail roads and length of combats... we can come back to the orginal point of the thread...




see that's the rub... it's like when my mother says "You didn't do anything today" and I say "I shoveled, did the dishes, and took out the garbage" then she comes back with "That doesn't count those are all things you are supposed to do"
in that case "If you say nothing I did counts, then I did nothing"

in this case "People who claim to have these problems don't count, and once you take that away no one claims to have these problems..."

it's a variant on the 'No true Scotsman'

You don't see the irony of this statement. YOU are the one that told people that THEIR experiences were myths. YOU are the one that told people that their opinions on the forums "don't count". And now you're complaining?

No, sorry, if this rubs you the wrong way, now you know how others felt when reading this thread title and your original post. You told them, "but that doesn't count, because it's not my experience it's just yours, and your experience doesn't count because you're posting to a forum, unlike my experience which I am also posting to a forum but somehow that one counts and yours does not".


lets pretend [a bunch of analogies]

No, lets not argue by analogy. It often isn't helpful. It's helpful when someone doesn't understand something obscure that you're saying and there is a need to relate it to something more common so everyone understands. But, we all understand what you're saying, so let's not do the analogy thing. We get it, you think your experiences are more representative of the total body of D&D players than our experiences.

You, a poster to internet forums, told others your experience. You then also told them that, because they are posters to an internet forum, their experiences don't count. It's a vapid, vacuous argument. It's obviously not a good argument - because you're just one of the very same people you're saying don't count. You are the very "internet forum poster's opinion" that you are dismissing.

If anecdotal evidence is good (and that is what you are arguing, that your anecdotal evidence is good evidence), then MORE anecdotal evidence would be good too. And you're getting that. A whole bunch of people gave you their anecdotal evidence in this thread, and much of theirs runs contrary to yours. And their opinions come from across the nation and even overseas. And their opinions come from all age groups, including people who have played more years than you have. And their opinions come from groups of players with backgrounds that differ from the backgrounds you have experience with. By any measure, if anecdotal evidence is a good way to draw conclusions on this topic, then you'd be taking in all those other experiences people are reporting and questioning your own conclusion.

But you're not questioning your conclusion. All you are doing is doubling down on telling others that their experiences don't count (because they are posting to an internet forum) and that your experiences do count (despite the fact you are also posting to an internet forum).

It makes no sense. At this point, if getting to the truth on this topic were your primary goal, you'd be at least vaguely questioning your conclusions. But you're not. You're just repeating your experiences and telling us why our experiences don't count, in a variety of ways, over and over again.
 

XunValdorl_of_Kilsek

Banned
Banned
why not? I still have powers, and push and pull and slide and mark and AEUD and I still have 1/2 level to everything and more uniform HP... the last 4e game I played in we used minis for only the end of each dungeon fight....

infact does that mean you can't get the default 4e experience with play by email or play by post?

does it matter if I do this:

P1 My fighter does come and get it and pulls 4 goblins to him and attacks...
P2 My ranger uses his at will that lets him attack everyone in burst 1 with a basic attack (forget the name) center on fighter

do we need minis for that?

Because every single movement, placement, and action is taken into account. To play 4th edition in it's entirety, you must have miniatures. The game was designed for miniatures. Sure you can play a watered down version of the game, but we aren't talking about that.
 

enrious

Registered User
I know 4e had a lot of things that made those fights long, but I often wonder if no one had fruit ninja/ Angry birds/ candy crush going and no one could be having a converstion without really talking on the phone, and no one could be internet surfing... would it play faster? Then again maybe I'm just a luddite

I'm not sure I follow. Are you asserting that the behavior of being distracted based on your own experiences or your imagined experiences of others is a universal, and being universal, a reason why 4e combat lasts longer than perhaps different editions?

I'm honestly not sure this isn't a giant non-starter. I mean, logically speaking, couldn't I make the same observations about play today involving 1e or Pathfinder or Champions or ICONS? Except that I wouldn't be speaking from experience as the distractions mentioned do not exist at my table. Thus, to what end the observation as it is then clearly not a universal?
 
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You don't see the irony of this statement. YOU are the one that told people that THEIR experiences were myths. YOU are the one that told people that their opinions on the forums "don't count". And now you're complaining?

No, sorry, if this rubs you the wrong way, now you know how others felt when reading this thread title and your original post. You told them, "but that doesn't count, because it's not my experience it's just yours, and your experience doesn't count because you're posting to a forum, unlike my experience which I am also posting to a forum but somehow that one counts and yours does not".
I wasn't the OP and I NEVER SAID ANYTHING LIKR THAT!!!!!!!!!!!
 

You, a poster to internet forums, told others your experience. You then also told them that, because they are posters to an internet forum, their experiences don't count. It's a vapid, vacuous argument. It's obviously not a good argument - because you're just one of the very same people you're saying don't count. You are the very "internet forum poster's opinion" that you are dismissing.

no I posted on the internent my thoughts and an antodit and was insulted for it... I NEVER SAID ANTODATAL evadance doesn't count...

you are either mistaken or the rudest person here making things up to argue about...

If anecdotal evidence is good (and that is what you are arguing, that your anecdotal evidence is good evidence), then MORE anecdotal evidence would be good too.
when applied to the game over all yes when applied to one game somewhere once no... the over whelming evadance was my game was no worse for my rules call... that doesn't mean the books should not have rules...


And you're getting that. A whole bunch of people gave you their anecdotal evidence in this thread, and much of theirs runs contrary to yours. And their opinions come from across the nation and even overseas.
hense my anology 100 people play the game 45 see a problem how do you convince the other 55 of it if they never saw it?


And their opinions come from all age groups, including people who have played more years than you have. And their opinions come from groups of players with backgrounds that differ from the backgrounds you have experience with. By any measure, if anecdotal evidence is a good way to draw conclusions on this topic, then you'd be taking in all those other experiences people are reporting and questioning your own conclusion.
almost like we need to find common ground to work from

But you're not questioning your conclusion. All you are doing is doubling down on telling others that their experiences don't count (because they are posting to an internet forum) and that your experiences do count (despite the fact you are also posting to an internet forum).
WHEN?!??!?!?!?? I have defended every opionon
 

Derren

Hero
I am still waiting for actual evidence, beyond personal anecdote, that this claim is true: " I'm talking about the myth that a lot of people somehow want all classes to be balanced when it comes to combat and damage."

Several (a lot of) pages ago someone linked to a poll here on ENworld about balance which showed exactly that.
 

Mistwell

Crusty Old Meatwad (he/him)
I wasn't the OP and I NEVER SAID ANYTHING LIKR THAT!!!!!!!!!!!

You are right. I confused you with [MENTION=6762534]XunValdorl_of_Kilsek[/MENTION] . I apologize. None of what I said was directed at you, but was instead entirely meant for XunValdorl_of_Kilsek. Sorry about that.
 



DerekSTheRed

Explorer
I've not read this entirely long thread so please forgive me if this has already been brought up. I think the biggest issue is the change in how levels and XP in D&D are handled between 2E and 3E. Before 3E, each class had different XP progression rates. They also had different power curves. For example, the thief in 2E would level up faster than other classes, but a 7th level thief was much weaker than a 7th level wizard.

Once 3E introduced the common XP progression table and a more combat focused way to gain XP (the CR), it was much more common to see groups have everyone the same level (or close to it). This was especially true for RPGA modules (and later Pathfinder Society) which went out of its way to get tables of PC with the same approximate levels. The reason for this was because of the assumption that same class level meant same power level of the character. And by extension the same power level of the component classes that make up that character.

This change had several ramifications on things like multi-classing and IME team awarding of XP instead of individual rewards. It also created the assumption among players that every class had to be balanced against one another especially in combat where the lion share of XP was earned. This wasn't the case in 2E where treasure would also get you XP and not just killing monsters.

4E and now Next have continued the change from 2E XP to 3E XP and so the topic of class and combat balance remains relevant.
 

XunValdorl_of_Kilsek

Banned
Banned
You don't see the irony of this statement. YOU are the one that told people that THEIR experiences were myths. YOU are the one that told people that their opinions on the forums "don't count". And now you're complaining?

No, sorry, if this rubs you the wrong way, now you know how others felt when reading this thread title and your original post. You told them, "but that doesn't count, because it's not my experience it's just yours, and your experience doesn't count because you're posting to a forum, unlike my experience which I am also posting to a forum but somehow that one counts and yours does not".




No, lets not argue by analogy. It often isn't helpful. It's helpful when someone doesn't understand something obscure that you're saying and there is a need to relate it to something more common so everyone understands. But, we all understand what you're saying, so let's not do the analogy thing. We get it, you think your experiences are more representative of the total body of D&D players than our experiences.

You, a poster to internet forums, told others your experience. You then also told them that, because they are posters to an internet forum, their experiences don't count. It's a vapid, vacuous argument. It's obviously not a good argument - because you're just one of the very same people you're saying don't count. You are the very "internet forum poster's opinion" that you are dismissing.

If anecdotal evidence is good (and that is what you are arguing, that your anecdotal evidence is good evidence), then MORE anecdotal evidence would be good too. And you're getting that. A whole bunch of people gave you their anecdotal evidence in this thread, and much of theirs runs contrary to yours. And their opinions come from across the nation and even overseas. And their opinions come from all age groups, including people who have played more years than you have. And their opinions come from groups of players with backgrounds that differ from the backgrounds you have experience with. By any measure, if anecdotal evidence is a good way to draw conclusions on this topic, then you'd be taking in all those other experiences people are reporting and questioning your own conclusion.

But you're not questioning your conclusion. All you are doing is doubling down on telling others that their experiences don't count (because they are posting to an internet forum) and that your experiences do count (despite the fact you are also posting to an internet forum).

It makes no sense. At this point, if getting to the truth on this topic were your primary goal, you'd be at least vaguely questioning your conclusions. But you're not. You're just repeating your experiences and telling us why our experiences don't count, in a variety of ways, over and over again.

I'm the one that called it a myth, not GM. Also, what I call a myth is the whole balance concern that is supposedly floating out there amongst the majority. I never said that not a single person is concerned, I am talking about it as a wide phenomena and I stick by exactly what I said.

The majority of gamers that I have come in contact with could give a rats ass about tight balance in a game. Working towards balance is not the problem, making balance the end all to everything is where the problem exists.
 

Incenjucar

Legend
The point of the game is fun. Balance just makes getting to that goal easier and more consistent. There are other ways to do it, but balance is one of them. The only exceptions to this that I can think of are when your play style is specifically about locating and utilizing unbalanced options (whether extra-weak or extra-strong ones), when you want to apply balance post-rules (house rules, fudging, deus ex machina, etc), or when you want to be unable to predict the chances of certain outcomes.

The method of balancing is certainly a factor, and is especially affected by the play style of the individuals involved.

Whether or not someone "cares about balance" it will affect their gaming and whether or not they have fun, unless results have no effect on their fun to begin with. A game with very tight, symmetrical balance requires very little effort to develop content for and to run. The more asymmetrical, skewed, or random the balance, the more effort is required to get specific, predictable statistical outcomes (percent chance of party wipe, etc). Even if a particular group doesn't "give a rat's ass" about balance, it does affect the effort required and possible outcomes, and most people do care about the effort and outcome to at least some degree.
 

Mistwell

Crusty Old Meatwad (he/him)
I'm the one that called it a myth, not GM. Also, what I call a myth is the whole balance concern that is supposedly floating out there amongst the majority. I never said that not a single person is concerned, I am talking about it as a wide phenomena and I stick by exactly what I said.

The majority of gamers that I have come in contact with could give a rats ass about tight balance in a game. Working towards balance is not the problem, making balance the end all to everything is where the problem exists.

First, you don't get to become a moving target here. The position you took was, "I'm talking about the myth that a lot of people somehow want all classes to be balanced when it comes to combat and damage."

You didn't say "a majority". "A lot" of people could be 1 in 5 people. "A lot" simply means "enough to make a deal about". I'm pretty sure WOTC would want to be concerned about 1 in 5 D&D players, right? That's one in every D&D group, roughly (a DM and four players).

Second, let me see if I get this straight:

1) In your experience, people are not that concerned with this balance issue we're talking about;
2) You post to message boards, and posted your opinion regarding your experience with this;
3) Many others have posted that their experiences differ from yours, and some have more years of gaming experience than you, and they all have a variety of players of different ages and backgrounds and geographic regions which vary from your own;
4) The opinions of those people who differ with you, which they posted to this board, should be dismissed as mostly a "message board" issue. Your opinion, which you posted on a message board, should be seen as more representative of the body of RPG players out there than the posts from these other people who say they have different experiences than yours.

Did I get any of that wrong?

Why is your opinion, posted on a message board, more representative of the whole body of RPG players than the opinions of others posted on that same message board concerning the same topic?
 

I'm the one that called it a myth, not GM. Also, what I call a myth is the whole balance concern that is supposedly floating out there amongst the majority. I never said that not a single person is concerned, I am talking about it as a wide phenomena and I stick by exactly what I said.

The majority of gamers that I have come in contact with could give a rats ass about tight balance in a game. Working towards balance is not the problem, making balance the end all to everything is where the problem exists.

Balance is like oxygen. You only notice it when you don't have it any more. That's unless you're doing game design. And one of the ways round broken games is to not use the powerful options or strategies.
 

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