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5E Why the Druid Metal Restriction is Poorly Implemented

Paul Farquhar

Adventurer
The RAW is 'will not'.

Therefore, following RAW a Druid 'will not' do it. They will refuse. That is all.
But it is also a rule that the DM does play the player character. Now, the DM is free to infer that a character who chooses to do it anyway (because it is against the rules for the DM to overrule a player character's actions) then they are not a druid. But the rules (as written) do not require a character to be a Druid (member of the druidic religion in good standing) in order to have the abilities of a druid. That is entirely up the DM.

And again I reiterate: NO ONE is talking about players who are deliberately being awkward. I've never seen it, I doubt anyone else has ever seen it either.

They are talking about how to handle situations that arise through play. E.g. a villain captures the PC druid and locks them into an iron suit. And... what happens?
 

JonnyP71

Explorer
They are talking about how to handle situations that arise through play. E.g. a villain captures the PC druid and locks them into an iron suit. And... what happens?
What happens..... is up to the DM, that's RAW too. There's no need for a 'printed rules for everything' approach - let the DM decide.

I'd rule that while locked in the iron suit the Druid loses all class powers, and is slowly driven insane, as he cannot cope with being surrounded by so much metal.

(plus, it's not against the rules for a DM to overrule a player's actions - the example of PvP has already been discussed)
 

Ohmyn

Villager
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.
A forum isn't comparable to a game table. I'd never pull an argument at a game. Whatever the DM says goes, so you gotta roll with it, but that doesn't mean they're right. At an AL table, I'd simply bring up my points once to the DM to get their opinion, and if they said no metal armor, I'd just play my metal hammer throwing Dwarven Druid Guild Artisan, specialized in metalworking with proficiency in Smith's Tools (Dwarf) and Mason's Tools (Guild Artisan), with smiths and metal-forgers as my Guild Business. As long as I never get an armor bonus from metal, I'm golden (so long as that doesn't give me an AC bonus).

Amusing side note, since it's a taboo and not a mechanical restriction, clearly all any party needs at an AL table is an artisan in the party to paint and lacquer some metal to look like wood, and convince the 8 INT Druid that it's ironwood, or to gloss up some scale armor and tell them it's chromatic dragon scales. It's not violating a taboo if they don't know, right?
 

Ohmyn

Villager
What happens..... is up to the DM, that's RAW too. There's no need for a 'printed rules for everything' approach - let the DM decide.

I'd rule that while locked in the iron suit the Druid loses all class powers, and is slowly driven insane, as he cannot cope with being surrounded by so much metal.

(plus, it's not against the rules for a DM to overrule a player's actions - the example of PvP has already been discussed)
Well the issue is that there is a need for printed rules at a RAW table. Nowhere do the books even hint at a Druid suffering any ill effect from metal, even through so much as a lore statement, so that would be a house rule, and therefore not AL legal as far as I know. The Paladin has tenets, but nothing forces them to follow them. The Devotion Paladin has a tenet that says they "Don't lie or cheat.", but without the excerpt that offers the optional rules for the DM to use against a Devotion Paladin that violates their oath, there'd be no mechanical implications to stop a Devotion Paladin from lying or cheating. Even with the blurb, there's still nothing stopping them, there's just now consequences. The lack of this is the issue with the Druid wording.
 

Ohmyn

Villager
And again I reiterate: NO ONE is talking about players who are deliberately being awkward. I've never seen it, I doubt anyone else has ever seen it either.

They are talking about how to handle situations that arise through play. E.g. a villain captures the PC druid and locks them into an iron suit. And... what happens?
Yes, I would like to reiterate that I am also in this camp. I don't personally care if my Druid can or cannot wear armor, I'm merely discussing the issues in the RAW, using extreme examples to emphasize the issues with the system's lack of clarification.

I have brought up the idea of being a Druid wearing metal willingly, but as a means of pointing out that nothing in the RAW stops it, just as nothing in the RAW stops a Devotion Paladin from lying or cheating. The issue here is that if my Druid does decide to put on metal, nothing in the game system actually stops my character from being able to make that decision, and this was confirmed in the Sage Advice, but people still assume that the only interpretation of RAW is that there is something in the game system that stops the Druid.

Nowhere in the Paladin's class does it say the tenets of their oath are optional, but the only thing stopping Paladins from breaking their tenets is an optional blurb about punishments that the DM can use at their discretion if the Paladin breaks their oaths. Without that optional lore box there would be no mechanic to enforce the tenets; however, if the only difference between the Paladin's tenets and the Druid's taboo is that one has an optional mechanical implication added to the PHB, then why are both not otherwise treated the same in regards to how they're able to be handled by the player?
 

Paul Farquhar

Adventurer
What happens..... is up to the DM, that's RAW too. There's no need for a 'printed rules for everything' approach - let the DM decide.
I agree completely.

However, it makes the DM's job a lot easier if they already know the mechanics of the restriction in their setting.

Is it physical? Metal block druidic magic. Is an enforceable vow? Sylvanus is cross and takes your power away. Is it psychological? Your suggestion would appear to support the later.

"I'd rule that while locked in the iron suit the Druid loses all class powers, and is slowly driven insane, as he cannot cope with being surrounded by so much metal."

-I wouldn't impose this as a DM, but it wouldn't surprise me if a certain player didn't roleplay this outcome anyway, since it is what their character believes that matters.

plus, it's not against the rules for a DM to overrule a player's actions - the example of PvP has already been discussed)
I don't overrule PvP and wouldn't consider it appropriate to do so.
 
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JonnyP71

Explorer
Well the issue is that there is a need for printed rules at a RAW table.
The RAW is 'will not'.

It's simple. It won't happen. Therefore there's no need.

Playing RAW no Druid can put on metal willingly. It's not an option..
 
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JonnyP71

Explorer
I don't overrule PvP and wouldn't consider it appropriate to do so.
Many many tables do... and it's not considered to be bad DMing or heavy handed in any way. It's just a different approach by the group as a whole.

I hate the 'me me me, I saw it first' arguments that tend to crop up when the party find loot... thus one of my own current table rules is "all treasure found while adventuring is party treasure to be shared at the end of the adventure" - in addition to 'no intentionally damaging PvP'. I find that fosters a co-operative environment from the very start. This was necessary as the group of friends I DM for most often has one person amongst them who does occasionally try to screw around with the others. 95% of the time he's fine, he's creative and entertaining - but just occasionally he crosses the line. This rule keeps him in check.

Also, after a 50 hour week at work, I refuse to DM a 6 hour session on a Friday night with them all bickering ;)
 

JonnyP71

Explorer
And there you go with "if you don't interpret the game my way you are playing it wrong" again.
The phrase 'will not' is not ambiguous, especially when playing RAW, as the OP is referring to. The use of the English is very plain. It's not 'usually chooses not to', or 'dislikes', or 'is mildly irked by'... it's 'will not'.
 

Paul Farquhar

Adventurer
The phrase 'will not' is not ambiguous, especially when playing RAW, as the OP is referring to. The use of the English is very plain. It's not 'usually chooses not to', or 'dislikes', or 'is mildly irked by'... it's 'will not'.
The existance of this thread proves it is ambigous. If it where clear everyone would agree with you and the thread would have been over after the first page.

I personally, can see no difference whatsoever between "chooses not to" and "will not".

On page 5 of the DMG it says "A player tells the DM what he or she wants to do, and the DM determines whether it is successful or not". I would say that unambiguously limits the role of the DM to determining outcomes, not actions. The fact that you don't agree with me proves it is not sufficiently unambiguous.
 
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Maxperson

Orcus on an on Day
The RAW is 'will not'.

Therefore, following RAW a Druid 'will not' do it.
Correct(other than it not really being a rule). "Will not" is not the same as "cannot." The former makes it a personal choice, one which a player can change. "Cannot" is the one you are mistaking it for.

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.
No less of an ass than a DM who refuses to let him put the armor on if he has a valid in game reason for overcoming the nebulous, unspecified taboo and donning the armor.
 

Maxperson

Orcus on an on Day
What happens..... is up to the DM, that's RAW too. There's no need for a 'printed rules for everything' approach - let the DM decide.

I'd rule that while locked in the iron suit the Druid loses all class powers, and is slowly driven insane, as he cannot cope with being surrounded by so much metal.

(plus, it's not against the rules for a DM to overrule a player's actions - the example of PvP has already been discussed)
It's taboo, not a deathly allergy. It's taboo for a Jewish person to eat pork. Do you know how many Jewish people I know that like bacon? A lot. Do you know how many of them cease to be Jewish when they break that taboo? Zero.
 

Paul Farquhar

Adventurer
It's taboo, not a deathly allergy. It's taboo for a Jewish person to eat pork. Do you know how many Jewish people I know that like bacon? A lot. Do you know how many of them cease to be Jewish when they break that taboo? Zero.
I wouldn't have a problem if a DM did decide it was a deathly allergy. If god exists, he could strike bacon-eating jews dead if he wanted to.

But that is a matter for the DM to decide what best suits the setting.
 

Maxperson

Orcus on an on Day
Nowhere in the Paladin's class does it say the tenets of their oath are optional, but the only thing stopping Paladins from breaking their tenets is an optional blurb about punishments that the DM can use at their discretion if the Paladin breaks their oaths.
They are in fact not optional. From the The Cause of Righteousness section, "Different paladins focus on various aspects of the cause of righteousness, but all are bound by the oaths that grant them power to do their sacred work."

All of them are bound by their oaths. That's not optional wording and is every bit as much of a rule as the druid blurb, so like druids, they literally cannot break those oaths I guess.
 

Maxperson

Orcus on an on Day
The RAW is 'will not'.

It's simple. It won't happen. Therefore there's no need.

Playing RAW no Druid can put on metal willingly. It's not an option..
Playing RAW no paladin can violate an oath. They are bound by that oath per RAW.
 

Maxperson

Orcus on an on Day
I wouldn't have a problem if a DM did decide it was a deathly allergy. If god exists, he could strike bacon-eating jews dead if he wanted to.

But that is a matter for the DM to decide what best suits the setting.
The point is that eating bacon is taboo and Jews will not eat bacon, yet many do and nothing happens. In D&D the "nothing happens" portion can be changed by the DM, but it's still a personal choice whether or not to be bound by the taboo of your faith.
 

5ekyu

Explorer
The existance of this thread proves it is ambigous. If it where clear everyone would agree with you and the thread would have been over after the first page.

I personally, can see no difference whatsoever between "chooses not to" and "will not".

On page 5 of the DMG it says "A player tells the DM what he or she wants to do, and the DM determines whether it is successful or not". I would say that unambiguously limits the role of the DM to determining outcomes, not actions. The fact that you don't agree with me proves it is not sufficiently unambiguous.
Ok, so, to you the rule in the PHB reads as a druid chooses not to wear armor or shields made of metal?

Ok.

So a player playing a druid agrees to that.

Ok.

So, then, if in play that player decides that his character will now chooses differently is now violating the rule the player agreed to.

Right ?

Or are you really seeing "will not" as "sometimes might maybe kinda on occasion choose not to but only when convenient"?
 

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