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5E Why the Druid Metal Restriction is Poorly Implemented

Sacrosanct

Slayer of Keraptis
That's because the Monster Manual says that "[t]o kill a troll, the monster must be burned or immersed in acid, any separate pieces being treated in the same fashion or they create a whole again in 3-18 melee rounds."

It never says that you can use "fire" or "flame" ANYWHERE IN THE DESCRIPTION!

By the powers of RAW and RAI, and because I once saw a copy of a monster manual, I demand you stop railroading me into using fire on trolls. Because burned doesn't mean fire, it clearly means, um, freezer burns.

Nothing worse than tyrants trying to end my player agency!!!!!


Don’t you see? Clearly “burned” means to suffer from being the butt of a wicked joke.

“Yo mama so fat, she has to use a boomerang to put on her belt!”
“Way to go Bob, you killed the troll for good! Sick burn!”
 

Satyrn

Villager
Don’t you see? Clearly “burned” means to suffer from being the butt of a wicked joke.

“Yo mama so fat, she has to use a boomerang to put on her belt!”
“Way to go Bob, you killed the troll for good! Sick burn!”
:hmm:

This explains my forum behavior.
 

Ohmyn

Villager
But that's not what the rules state.

I then direct your attention to PHB p. 19:

Class Tale II: Armor and Weapons Permitted

Monks can't use oil, for example. Can you identify the negative impact for it if you don't follow it? Nope? Thought so.
Yes, I can. The DMG has rules about what happens when a player displays behavior that goes against the character of their class. Monks can't use oil, so a Monk that chooses to do so anyway will be punished for their deviation from their expected gameplay. Even in the example that I was "corrected" on earlier in this thread, Clerics can be unfaithful to their deity, and that's actually another explicit example listed in that section of the DMG. Being unfaithful to a deity in AD&D does NOT automatically remove their spellcasting, as I was also "corrected" on. They prepare all level 1-4 spells without the need of a deity, as the magic comes from personal prayer and meditation. It's only 5th level and higher spells that the Cleric need to request from their deity, and that's still on a case by case basis. There's no rule that says a single deviation from the deity automatically cuts off the Cleric from their magic forever. Say the Fighter is tied up and the Cleric is the only person who can free him. The only sharp item nearby is a dagger, which was obtained from the bounty hunter that nabbed the Fighter. Does the Cleric stare blindly at the dagger, or can they at least pick it up and cut a rope? If you argue that the Cleric can't pick up the dagger because their deity says no pokey things, then you're not reading the rules properly.

Maybe the high level Cleric does something the deity doesn't like, and the deity considers it so egregious that they deny them spells of higher than 4th level forever (much like a Paladin knowingly performing an evil action). Maybe it's something minor, or a lesser of two evils situation so the deity can understand the Cleric's choice, so they offer them the ability to seek penance. Either way, the point is that these things are written into the game system, so to say it can't be done, simply because the word "can't" appears once, despite the fact that the book lists examples and penalties that can be incurred for these actions, then you are not taking in the whole context.

Druids are allowed leather armor and a wooden shield.

That's it. Leather, wooden shield.

That's what you get as a druid. Can a thief use a pole arm? No. Can a druid use a long bow? No. (See also the argument re: proficiencies, which you also got incorrect).
And you're still reading it like a board game and not an RPG game. They're only allowed to wear leather and wood. Why? Because they lose their magic if they put on metal. What happens if they put on metal? They lose access to their magic. Simple. Being not allowed to do something does not mean you can't do it, it just means there are consequences for the behavior. The problem with old players is they read it as a board game, and like Max said before, they simply stopped reading at "can't", and ignored everything else, both where it says what happens when it's done, as well as when it explains the penalties for doing so. That's not how the rules were written, that's just how they were read.

If your Rogue is at a gambling table with a Fighter, and that Fighter catches the Rogue cheating, is that Fighter unable to flip the table on him because "he's not proficient in tables"? If that's how you rule it, you don't know how the game works.

There are all sorts of examples of rules in AD&D that just ... are. I want to play a CN Assassin. Can I? No. What happens if I do? Well, you don't.
That's literally not true. They explain the Assassin alignment restriction in detail. "Assassins are evil in alignment (perforce, as the killing of humans and other intelligent life forms for thepurpose of profit is basically held to be the antithesis of weal)." If you weren't killing intelligent creatures for profit then you weren't an assassin. If you were killing intelligent creatures for profit, then you were not good. If you made an Assassin but acted good, including a refusal to kill people for profit, which you could do, the DMG had a table for punishing you for either acting outside of your class or acting outside of your alignment (in this case, both).

So, you are hanging everything on the following:

PHB, p. 21-
"The more powerful druidic spells, as well as their widerrange of weaponry, make up for the fact that druids are unable to use anyarmor or shields other than leather armor and wooden shields (metallicarmor spoils their magical powers)."

Contrast that with the MU (PHB p. 25) -
"Furthermore, they can wear noarmor and have few weapons they can use, for martial training is soforeign to magic-use as to make the two almost mutually exclusive."

The parenthtical afterthought in the Druid. Like many Gygax-isms, it doesn't help, does it? So Druids can't wear metal armor for REASONS, and Magic Users can't wear metal armor for REASONS, and the two reasons are completely made-up and different, and yet, they are both CLASS RESTRICTIONS.

Does a magic user explode if they wear plate mail?
The parenthesis is not an afterthought, it's an explanation, and yes, it does help. It helps just as much as the mention as to why Magic Users can't use armor.

Simplifying the sentence, "Druids can't wear metal because it spoils their magic." What does this mean? It means Druids are prohibited from wearing metal, because if they do so, it spoils their magic. What happens if the Druid chooses to wear it anyway? That's right, it spoils their magic.

Simplifying the sentence about Magic Users: "Magic users can't wear armor because they lack the martial training necessary." What does this mean? No benefits from armor under any circumstance because they lack the training to utilize it. Armor still has rules such as encumbrance, and even if they multiclass to gain training in armor, it's then listed that they can't use their spells in anything heavier than leather. Also, because they don't use armor due to lack of training, if they decided to impede their arm with a shield they can't even properly utilize, again, there's rules in the DMG for behavior outside of their class.

If I say I can't use the restroom because I'm not a paying customer, that just means I have to buy something and I can use the restroom. Alternatively, I could sneak into the restroom. As a Paladin I'd be punished, as I intentionally committed a chaotic act, but as a Thief I'd be right in my element. These class rules did not define the laws of the universe; they defined the positives and negatives of the actions players performed. What stopped a Paladin from performing evil acts was not that the book said they can't do anything evil, but that the book said they would irrevocably lose all of their abilities if they performed an evil act. What stopped a Thief from using a polearm was lack of proficiency, and out-of-class penalization.

I now direct your attention to p. 33, PHB, "The Character with Two Classes"-

"The character may mix functions freely and still gain experience, although restrictions regarding armor, shield, and/or weapon apply with regard to operations particular to one or both classes."

Then look at the example-
"Furthermore, the character can now carry (but not wear) armor and weapons not normally usable by magic-users, and resort to their use if the need arises and not be penalized in respect to experience as a magic-user, for he or she has already surpassed in the new class the disciplines of the former."

So, let's be clear, here. The reason given for the MU restriction is that martial training is foreign.
However, and this is great, if the player multiclasses into, say, a fighter, and learns those martial abilities, then when they cast spells, those restrictions apply.
You clearly didn't read your quote properly. You do realize it says "and not be penalized in respect to experience as a magic user", right? You know what that means? It means that if they performed that action without being multiclassed, they would be penalized in respect to experience as a Magic User. This literally states that it's not impossible for them to do so either way, it's just that now they won't be penalized for it. You aren't literally gaining the capacity to do something, you're gaining the ability to do it without penalty. I don't get how this is so difficult to understand, especially when the books repeat time and time and time again that you can perform behaviors outside of what's outlined in your class, there will just likely be consequences.

In short, you keep trying to REASON your way around rules that exist .... without actually understanding the rules aren't BECAUSE OF COMMON SENSE.

I swear, it's like you've never read these books. ;)

Seriously, though, the reason the OP is complaining that the rule is poorly implemented is because it resembles the way rules used to be implemented. Which required a little more comity, and a little less rules lawyering.
No, the issue is not that we haven't read the books, it's that you aren't reading the books properly, because you can't see the entire context of a statement. You learned to treat tabletop RPGs as a board game and not as an expansive universe where the players perform options, and then may be penalized or rewarded based on the mechanics of the system.
 
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Ohmyn

Villager
Yeah, I remember games in previous public play where you literally had to choose between a devil and a demon. We decided to tell them both to go to hell (maybe we should have told one to go to the Abyss?). In another game you had to make a deal that would have violated the paladins oath to continue with the mod. We didn't so the mod was over in 15 minutes.

Never understood why people think "moral dilemma" means "set up no win scenarios". Might work for some groups (and if it does more power to you), but just not my cup of tea. I always want an option, even if that option means there's a good chance my PC will die.
Because we're not talking about "no win scenarios". Have you never seen a situation where a villain has hostages, and the hero has to choose between pursuing the villain, or saving the hostages? If you character possesses a tenet to protect life, even this can create a moral dilemma for the Paladin in the heat of the moment. Heck, the Book of Vile Darkness in 3.5 had an NPC that had chains hanging off of their body that transferred damage over to hostages that were chained to them. This creates quite the moral dilemma for any good character.

Heck, just look at the Joker in The Dark Knight. He wanted to break Batman, to prove he wasn't truly so righteous. It's pretty common in the lore of devils that they enjoy torturing those who are good, and prefer to tempt or trick those who are most righteous. That's typically even something written into the modern Monster Manuals.

Also, having to choose between a devil and demon also does not have to mean they do something bad. What if the Paladin makes a deal that saves the lives on an entire kingdom from an evil creature they otherwise know they cannot stop? The PHB literally states that the Paladin is not infallible, and sometimes will have to choose between the lesser of two evils, or even abandon their tenets entirely if something else comes up that they feel is important enough.

If the morality of a Paladin is never challenged, then it's super easy to be a Paladin in that universe. It must be nice to have such accommodating devils and liches in the world, so much so that they never have a contingency plan against moral crusaders, which is perhaps the most common trope of nearly every villain ever.

Also, these things don't have to be targeted against a Paladin. Things can just so happen to exist in a premade campaign setting that a player is going to have to choose how to deal with. Sometimes the players get ahead of themselves, and that can lead to a situation where they have to make an extreme decision that perhaps not even the DM considered; the DM doesn't have a duty to coddle them if this happens.

I always want an option, even if that option means there's a good chance my PC will die.
Also, I find the irony in this statement, given that it's exactly what I and those agreeing with me have been arguing in defense for this entire time. The player makes the decision when it comes up, not the DM. If the DM tells me I literally can't put on metal armor under any situation, then they're denying me an option that my character could otherwise make. I consider it no different than telling a Paladin that he can't, or must, break their oaths.
 

5ekyu

Explorer
That's because the Monster Manual says that "[t]o kill a troll, the monster must be burned or immersed in acid, any separate pieces being treated in the same fashion or they create a whole again in 3-18 melee rounds."

It never says that you can use "fire" or "flame" ANYWHERE IN THE DESCRIPTION!

By the powers of RAW and RAI, and because I once saw a copy of a monster manual, I demand you stop railroading me into using fire on trolls. Because burned doesn't mean fire, it clearly means, um, freezer burns.

Nothing worse than tyrants trying to end my player agency!!!!!
Also, it says the monster, not the troll.... so obviously, every time I burn a monster a troll is killed.
 

Ohmyn

Villager
Also, it says the monster, not the troll.... so obviously, every time I burn a monster a troll is killed.
This is all made funnier by the irony that this is the actual level of reading comprehension you've all been displaying in your explanations of the AD&D rules thus far.
 

ccs

39th lv DM
This is all made funnier by the irony that this is the actual level of reading comprehension you've all been displaying in your explanations of the AD&D rules thus far.

What I find funny is that you apparently created an EnWorld account just to argue about druids wearing metal armor. 74 of your 75 posts to date have been in this thread.
I suppose that's a blessing though as you aren't going on elsewhere about something or other....

Btw, if you're going to keep on about 1e druids? Then I think you should apply your talents to the fact that 1e never codified what exactly was meant by "Metallic armor spoils their magical powers".
Does it mean they just can't cast their spells?
Do they lose their ability to shapeshift?
Can they still pass through overgrown areas freely?
How about IDing animals, plants, & pure water?

These are seriously deep concerns for us 1e players. You should thoroughly examine each one for us and make sure that we've read the rules properly. You know, now that we have this internet thing & all and can properly discuss rules with each other.
 

Maxperson

Orcus on an on Day
But that's not what the rules state.

Let's start with the origin, which so many people ignore. EW, p. 2.

"Druids are able to employ the following sorts of weapons: Daggers, sickle or crescent-shapedswords, spears, slings, and oil. They may wear armor of leather, and use wooden shields. Theymay not use metallic armor."

I then direct your attention to PHB p. 19:

Class Tale II: Armor and Weapons Permitted

Monks can't use oil, for example. Can you identify the negative impact for it if you don't follow it? Nope? Thought so.

Druids are allowed leather armor and a wooden shield.

That's it. Leather, wooden shield.

That's what you get as a druid.
All of that is just repeating the same one line over and over and over. Druid's can't wear metal armor. Repeating something doesn't make it more true. Once you boil it down, there is one line that says, "Druid's can't wear metal armor." and one line that says, "Metal armor spoils their magical powers." The druid section gives a restriction, and then the consequences of breaking that restriction. The absolute language used is hardly unique to druids and is also used with other classes and things that also have consequences for breaking the restriction. If you are going to treat the absolute language in the druid section as invalidating the consequences given for breaking that restriction, you have to do it for all of the classes.

This is what 1e says about the various classes.

Paladins: "paladins must begin as lawful good in alignment (q.v.) and always remain lawful good." Absolute language that if you are correct about druids, also applies to paladins and makes the consequences for violating the restriction impossible.

Monks: "Therefore they must always be lawful in alignment." Absolute language that if you are correct about druids, also applies to paladins and makes the consequences for violating the restriction impossible.

Druids: "druids are unable to use any armor or shields." Absolute language that if you are correct makes the consequences for violating the restriction impossible.

Gygax is huge on making restrictions(and not just with classes) and then allowing PCs to break them and suffer the consequences. That's how he wrote the edition. He was huge on consequences, not absolute no's. The druid is no exception to that.

Not only is the a player whose PC has his druid put on metal armor not being disruptive or violating the social contract, but he's actively engaging in the Gygaxian way.
 
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Maxperson

Orcus on an on Day
You may not like false equivalencies but you love your strawmen.
There was no Strawman there buddy. I didn't falsely attribute an argument to anyone. The above is an Argument from Fallacy, though. ;)

The gaslighting going on between you and the guy that created the account just to argue this one issue is amazing. Your argument style is just one step short of his calling everyone who played old school D&D stupid.
Says the guy with 354 posts over the last 17 years. Are you that sock puppet, too?


 

Sacrosanct

Slayer of Keraptis
There was no Strawman there buddy. I didn't falsely attribute an argument to anyone. The above is an Argument from Fallacy, though. ;)



Says the guy with 354 posts over the last 17 years. Are you that sock puppet, too?




Lol, did you really just argue about fallacies, and immediately follow that up with an ad hominem? And not even see the irony there?
 

5ekyu

Explorer
This is all made funnier by the irony that this is the actual level of reading comprehension you've all been displaying in your explanations of the AD&D rules thus far.
The hilarious bit here is that I have not been jumping into the AD&D rules issues from previous editions etc and have been focusing on 5e D&D so, yeah, nice choice of claims to quotes matching there!!!

:)
 

Maxperson

Orcus on an on Day
Lol, did you really just argue about fallacies, and immediately follow that up with an ad hominem? And not even see the irony there?
It was a simple question. It's highly unlikely that a primary account has only 354 posts over 17 years, and it's not an attack to call something what it is. I'm well aware that both accounts are sock puppet accounts. I just didn't really care until he brought it up.
 

Paul Farquhar

Explorer
Exchange from last night's game:

Druid: "I join the dice game."
Rogue: "You can't do that, you're a druid!"
Druid: "Are the dice metal?"
DM: "No, they are bone."
Druid: "That's okay then."
 

Ohmyn

Villager
What I find funny is that you apparently created an EnWorld account just to argue about druids wearing metal armor. 74 of your 75 posts to date have been in this thread.
I suppose that's a blessing though as you aren't going on elsewhere about something or other....

Btw, if you're going to keep on about 1e druids? Then I think you should apply your talents to the fact that 1e never codified what exactly was meant by "Metallic armor spoils their magical powers".
Does it mean they just can't cast their spells?
Do they lose their ability to shapeshift?
Can they still pass through overgrown areas freely?
How about IDing animals, plants, & pure water?

These are seriously deep concerns for us 1e players. You should thoroughly examine each one for us and make sure that we've read the rules properly. You know, now that we have this internet thing & all and can properly discuss rules with each other.
Sure, it didn't codify exactly what it meant, but we can get a general guideline through basic deduction. Now since it didn't codify exactly what it meant, there is some room for DM interpretation, just as there is room for DM interpretation on what qualifies as a "chaotic act" or an "evil act" for Paladins, or the DM has to interpret when a Cleric is denied or approved 5th level spells by their deity. The codified guideline is that it has a negative impact on their magic, as per "spoil". To spoil as a verb means to rob something from, or to diminish or destroy the quality or value of. It has some other meanings as a verb, but none of them can actually apply to this sentence, since we're not talking about food, or ballot boxes, or events. It doesn't just say it spoils their spells, but rather their magic, so the DM would simply have to decide which abilities are magical and apply their interpretation of spoil. If they identified animals via magic, then it most certainly would be a spoiled ability, because it's magic, and their magic is spoiled.

The DM would have to codify this either way if there were a Druid at the table, or the party were to capture a Druid. Heck, the party may have Assassins in it and they get a job to capture a Druid alive. An enemy (or player) that captures a Druid and understands that their magic is spoiled by metal armor would likely want to lock metal armor onto that Druid to ensure they don't escape from a cage with their magic, which is an example I pointed out before in this thread. An ideally captured Druid would be like The Man in the Iron Mask, and as per the RAW, this metal armor would impose a penalty on the captured Druid.

The issue with the 5E rule is that there's not even a codified guideline to be used for DM interpretation, unlike what the 5E Paladin has, or the 1E Paladin has, and even the 1E Druid has. There's nothing except they won't do it, which is incorrect as soon as they do it, but there's no listed guidelines for something actually happening if they do. Just like any other class that has taboo, taboo can be violated by player choice. This is the only instance where there's nothing listed as a guideline for when it's violated, intentionally or otherwise, as there's no mechanical implication on the action, nor any explanation as to the taboo itself. As per RAW, if it's violated, it requires a 100% total house rule to impose a penalty.
 

Ohmyn

Villager
The hilarious bit here is that I have not been jumping into the AD&D rules issues from previous editions etc and have been focusing on 5e D&D so, yeah, nice choice of claims to quotes matching there!!!

:)
Fair enough. I'll admit my mistake here. I got sidetracked in my response while reading all of the sarcastic comments and briefly thought I had clicked reply on Lowkey, when in fact it was a response from someone else quoting Lowkey.

Proper response from me would have been your comprehension of rules correlation between an action that is physically possible for a character to perform, and an action that is not physically possible for that character to perform. For example, trying to cast a spell from a slot I do not have is not comparable to putting on armor that was handed to me.
 

5ekyu

Explorer
Fair enough. I'll admit my mistake here. I got sidetracked in my response while reading all of the sarcastic comments and briefly thought I had clicked reply on Lowkey, when in fact it was a response from someone else quoting Lowkey.

Proper response from me would have been your comprehension of rules correlation between an action that is physically possible for a character to perform, and an action that is not physically possible for that character to perform. For example, trying to cast a spell from a slot I do not have is not comparable to putting on armor that was handed to me.
Both of which may be legal or illegal depending on the rules of a game. I for one recognize that some rules agreed to by players do not have to have in-game world causality - such as the no-pvp rule you left out when you limited your response.

But, thats ok.

Its expected.
 

Ohmyn

Villager
Both of which may be legal or illegal depending on the rules of a game. I for one recognize that some rules agreed to by players do not have to have in-game world causality - such as the no-pvp rule you left out when you limited your response.

But, thats ok.

Its expected.
The no PVP rule is also not equivalent, but it was not even relevant enough to address in the same manner. Spell slots are at least a RAW mechanic. The point being contested about the Druids in metal is what applies per RAW, not what applies as per past edition lore. Since the 5E system has nothing in place for what happens when the Druid dons metal armor, there is no RAW interpretation of what happens to a Druid that violates their taboo. RAW tables exist. AL events are supposed to be played RAW, and they prohibit house rules. Just as the system has no penalty for a Cleric that denounces their deity, or a Warlock that ignores their pact, or a Monk that plays as a money grubbing murder hobo thief, there is no penalty listed for a Druid that ignores their class lore. Without any codified RAW mechanics about this, it would have to be a house rule to impose a penalty, which are supposed to be avoided at RAW tables.

A gentleman's agreement at the table is completely irrelevant to that point. We can agree to remove Druids from the table completely, or the DM can choose to implement their own RAI as opposed to the RAW on anything they want, or the DM can remove any mechanics they don't like, but that has nothing to do with a discussion about the RAW mechanics of the game.
 

JonnyP71

Explorer
The RAW is 'will not'.

Therefore, following RAW a Druid 'will not' do it. They will refuse. That is all. A player insisting on pulling this stunt (which, as with others in this thread, I've NEVER seen anyone at my tables argue they can do in my 36 years of playing D&D) would be going against RAW and RAI, and being more than a bit of an ass.

Try pulling this argument of yours at an AL game and see how long it takes for the storekeeper to come over and 'have a quiet word' about disruptive behaviour.

Don't be 'that guy', it's not a positive trait.
 

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