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HowwwwL
12-14-2009, 07:55 AM
I am curious what those people who did not make the switch to 4th edition are playing now. Did you:

1) Stick with 3.5
2) Switch to Pathfinder
3) Go to a whole different game system

Swordnboard
12-14-2009, 08:40 AM
Me and my two groups: we stayed with 3.5 until Pathfinder came out. Now we're giving Pathfinder a try. If we like it, we'll stay with it. If not, back to 3.5e!

Arkhemedes
12-14-2009, 08:44 AM
Well, let's see. Counting all PBP and f2f games, I am currently in:
2 Pathfinder games (GM both)
1 3.5 game
1 2e game

WhiteTiger
12-14-2009, 09:10 AM
Pathfinder.

Skunkape
12-14-2009, 11:01 AM
We tried the Pathfinder beta for 1 game run with our group, but that switched back to 3.5. Right now, we've got 3 3.5 games being run with our group.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
12-14-2009, 01:13 PM
My friends love 4E. I felt i had to say that. Now for me, the release of 4E has allowed me to give away all my 3.5E material and focus on 1E/2E, WFRP, and Traveller CT/MgT.

With rare exceptions, i just don't play 3.5E, Pathfinder, or 4E anymore. 4E forced me to decide what i like most in gaming. Yep, i am a happier gamer, now.

HowwwwL
12-14-2009, 06:00 PM
I've been playing 4e since September now. I think I am going to try out Pathfinder to see the improvements they made.

After 4 months, our group is split on what they like better 4 or 3.5. I am pretty much indifferent there are things I like from both systems and things I don't like about both systems. I am trying to see what the major differences are with Pathfinder, and why one would like that better than 3.5.

I understand why some people would not like 4e now that we've played it for 4 months. It is mostly centering around the character and their abilities, as well as utility spells, and special class restrictions (that can cause role playing and storyline opportunities). It is funny, my wife is one of the biggest supporters for 4e, and likes the system way better than 3.5...

Basically I am hoping I can satisfy both crowds by not choosing 3.5 or 4, and instead going with Pathfinder or a Generic game system like GURPS or Hero System 6.0.

I was just seeing what you all did, and maybe if you have any comments or insight on the alternatives like Pathfinder or a generic system, I would appreciate any dialogue.
:)

Freejack
12-14-2009, 07:11 PM
I haven't played AD&D for some time. I did pick up Pathfinder recently though :)

While at the FLGS, Karl mentioned that a lot of the people who used to play D&D seem to be migrating over to Savage Worlds. He's been selling more SW gear than usual and more (not all) of the games running at the store are SW.

Carl

Webhead
12-14-2009, 09:06 PM
...Basically I am hoping I can satisfy both crowds by not choosing 3.5 or 4, and instead going with Pathfinder or a Generic game system like GURPS or Hero System 6.0.

I was just seeing what you all did, and maybe if you have any comments or insight on the alternatives like Pathfinder or a generic system, I would appreciate any dialogue.
:)

Just as a thought, if you're on the lookout for more of a "generic" tool-kit type of system but generally like the d20 System and would like a set of rules that uses d20 as a foundation, you would do really well to check out Mutants & Masterminds 2nd Edition. Yes, it presents itself as a super hero RPG but don't let that fool you. Beneath the surface, it is a very robust system with lots of options for tweaking it to just about any genre. There's even a supplement book called Warriors & Warlocks if you want some advice and options on using M&M to build a fantasy campaign. It gives lots of ideas and examples on how to use the game rules to play in the Fantasy genre.

Regarding D&D, I have chosen to distance myself from it whenever possible after several years being dissatisfied with 3.X and, subsequently, 4e.

I read briskly through Pathfinder and found it too similar to 3.5 to be appealing, so I've decided that there's no time like the present to move on.

*Warning: Somewhat-Harsh Opinion*

There are too many great RPGs out there to waste time on one that hasn't really managed to inspire me since high school. Only my personal opinion. Take as much or as little value from it as is relevant to you.

HowwwwL
12-14-2009, 10:33 PM
Ha! I have Mutants and Masterminds, and we played that over the last year. Funny you mentioned that RPG.

outrider
12-14-2009, 11:10 PM
my table top group is happy with 3.5 but likes some of the changes of pathfinder. None of them want to buy the book nor the pdf so we stay with 3.5. I am learning pathfinder through here by running it.

wizarddog
12-14-2009, 11:33 PM
I run a 4e game (originally 3.5 but the hold out for 3.5 stop coming).

I play in a pathfinder game.

Its a game. I don't usually care what system as long as I have a rule book. ;)

I should note that my 3.5 stuff still provide great resources.

Xandros
12-15-2009, 01:04 AM
Pretty much a 3.5 system that got mutated with so much homebrew stuff that it is barely recognizable as such anymore. I am currently working on breaking it down and rebuilding it from scratch and maybe try to publish it.

Skunkape
12-15-2009, 09:43 AM
While at the FLGS, Karl mentioned that a lot of the people who used to play D&D seem to be migrating over to Savage Worlds. He's been selling more SW gear than usual and more (not all) of the games running at the store are SW.

Carl

That's really interesting. I started running a few one shot weird west games using the Deadlands system over the past couple of months. My players like the SW system even to the point where we might use it to replace DnD. Not completely sure myself, I actually like the number of spells available from DnD, but I don't have all of the stuff from SW, so I'll be picking up some of their tool kits when I get extra funds.

That'll let me see how well I'll like running a fantasy campaign using SW.

Dark
12-15-2009, 10:25 AM
3.5 mostly with my table top players just completing the World's Largest Dungeon they are now heading into some of my home made dungeons.

tesral
12-15-2009, 10:37 AM
Same thing I've been playing all along. Very mutated D&D mixed edition.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
12-15-2009, 01:34 PM
Regarding D&D, I have chosen to distance myself from it whenever possible after several years being dissatisfied with 3.X and, subsequently, 4e.

I read briskly through Pathfinder and found it too similar to 3.5 to be appealing, so I've decided that there's no time like the present to move on.

*Warning: Somewhat-Harsh Opinion*

There are too many great RPGs out there to waste time on one that hasn't really managed to inspire me since high school. Only my personal opinion. Take as much or as little value from it as is relevant to you.

My thoughts, exactly. I will admit that i have always wanted to play All Flesh Must Be Eaten. Hopefully, one day soon, i will.

fmitchell
12-15-2009, 05:22 PM
True20 is another alternative, which I haven't yet played (as with many, many games). The basic mechanics stem from Mutants and Masterminds, but it has levels and classes (or "roles": Adept, Expert, Warrior) if you like that sort of thing. I also like their magic system, which revolves around Powers, not spells; instead of a bunch of Move Earth, S'drawkcab's Engulfing Hole, etc spells you take "Shape Earth" and move as much earth as your level allows, in any way you can imagine.

The current edition includes the content of the "True20 Companion", which provides tools and examples for tailoring it to specific genres: Fantasy, Science Fiction, Horror, Modern.

tesral
12-15-2009, 05:28 PM
True20 is another alternative, which I haven't yet played (as with many, many games).

I found true20 a little too crunch lite for my taste. It is the exact opposite of D&D 3.5 piled with every book in the line. I like a little more crunch than that.

Webhead
12-15-2009, 08:58 PM
My thoughts, exactly. I will admit that i have always wanted to play All Flesh Must Be Eaten. Hopefully, one day soon, i will.

Great game that I highly recommend. I'm currently trying to convince my brother to run another game of it as he has run some spectacular AFMBE sessions in the past that are still talked about to this day.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
12-15-2009, 09:02 PM
Last CON i was at, the DM was running AFMBE - in space. It was a great idea and i mentally noted to run something similar in a future Traveller CT game.

Webhead
12-15-2009, 09:05 PM
I found true20 a little too crunch lite for my taste. It is the exact opposite of D&D 3.5 piled with every book in the line. I like a little more crunch than that.

My primary problem with True20 was that it still operated on a level-based progression system which I find doesn't really sit well with me. That and the fact that while the "roles" were an interesting way to approach designing classes that could fit a variety of genres, each one still felt too structured in terms of certain progression factors. This is where M&M excelled for me. Adding a unified point-buy system to d20 for all elements of character creation to give greater freedom.

tesral
12-15-2009, 09:09 PM
This is where M&M excelled for me. Adding a unified point-buy system to d20 for all elements of character creation to give greater freedom.

Hmmm, looks like I will have to look into that one.

Webhead
12-15-2009, 09:12 PM
Hmmm, looks like I will have to look into that one.

If nothing else, it might give you some ideas and insight on how to implement such ideas into your own game. It basically deconstructs d20 into its component parts and then creates simple formulas for how to rebuild them again. It's worth reading even if you never plan to play it as a "supers" game.

Everything in M&M is purchased using the assigned "build-points". Attributes, skills, saves, feats, attack and defense bonuses, powers, gear...everything.

I've followed the game since the release of 1st Edition. If you have any questions about it, I'd be happy to share more info.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
12-16-2009, 02:01 AM
My primary problem with True20 was that it still operated on a level-based progression system which I find doesn't really sit well with me.

Agreed.

Personally, I only tolerate level advancement systems with DnD. Other than that, i have no real interest in them... none, whatsoever. This in no way means i don't love DnD; i do, as a matter of fact, especially the older editions.

tesral
12-16-2009, 02:52 AM
Agreed.

Personally, I only tolerate level advancement systems with DnD. Other than that, i have no real interest in them... none, whatsoever. This in no way means i don't love DnD; i do, as a matter of fact, especially the older editions.

I feel very much the same way about it. I cut my RPG teeth on White Box D&D and the game holds a certain degree of "comfort gaming". Fantasy to me is D&D shaped. I have tried the system on other genres, and I don't like it. Too ridged and too clunky. But I love my D&D.

WhiteTiger
12-16-2009, 09:21 AM
Originally Posted by Webhead http://www.penandpapergames.com/forums/pnpg_style/buttons/viewpost.gif (http://www.penandpapergames.com/forums/showthread.php?p=123644#post123644)
This is where M&M excelled for me. Adding a unified point-buy system to d20 for all elements of character creation to give greater freedom.



Hmmm, looks like I will have to look into that one.


Me, too. I love the idea of a unified point buy system.

Richard Littles
12-16-2009, 10:37 AM
Fantasy Hero because I like not having to learn a brand new rules system for a new genre. :)

HowwwwL
12-16-2009, 05:57 PM
I really liked playing Champions. Started playing with 1st edition waaaaaaay back. Played a little bit with 5th Edition Hero system in the last 12 months. Hero system is very solid, but never thought Fantasy Hero would be any good. Always like Hero System for all the cool super powers, and fun combat!

Richard Littles
12-17-2009, 02:36 AM
I really liked playing Champions. Started playing with 1st edition waaaaaaay back. Played a little bit with 5th Edition Hero system in the last 12 months. Hero system is very solid, but never thought Fantasy Hero would be any good. Always like Hero System for all the cool super powers, and fun combat!

Fantasy Hero has the rules for mass combat so you can do really epic battles and stuff. The mass combat rules are usable by the other genres that Hero does. :)

LordChicken
12-17-2009, 12:48 PM
After the end to 3.5, i switched 70% of my attention to path finder 10% to 4E and the last 20% to Misc Games.

HowwwwL
12-17-2009, 06:51 PM
How do you like Pathfinder, Chicken?

tesral
12-17-2009, 10:05 PM
How do you like Pathfinder, Chicken?

It is slightly cruncher than 3.5 chicken, but agrees with me far better than Forry Chicken.

HowwwwL
12-18-2009, 10:19 AM
lol

Arsonall
12-18-2009, 02:01 PM
Stuck with 3.5.

4.0 was a little slow moving for our group.

cigamnogard
12-18-2009, 08:01 PM
Mix of 3.0 and 3.5 - check out my blogs for the current Eberron campaign I am DMing.

nijineko
12-22-2009, 03:43 PM
still use 3.5. i've looked over the pathfinder and like some of it, but until one of us buys a book or three that won't happen. i might just wind up writing my own.

Frobozz
12-22-2009, 03:54 PM
Pathfinder for me, though I'm currently playing in a 3.5 group that's very house-ruled (the game world is based on like a Final Fantasy 6/7 concept, so there's cars and technology and guns as well... I'm playing a gunfighter and loving it.)

Fantasy for me has always been D&D as well. I've tried other Fantasy systems, even d20 based, but for some reason hated them all. Pathfinder is D&D 3.75 to me.

MortonStromgal
12-23-2009, 11:19 AM
Funny thing, other than Call of Cthuhlu I am finding I don't like the 4th edition of any RPG as much as I like the 3rd edition. I find all games made some improvements but way too many changes over all to be the game I liked playing from 1-3e. 4th editions also feel a lot like 1st editions because with all the new stuff they have new problems. So for me although I want to like 4th editions I find myself running 3e versions.

Example Games: D&D, Shadowrun, Vampire, GURPS.

talysian
12-23-2009, 11:47 AM
Aftre Running 4e for 6 month's I finally decided that any version of d&d just doesn't apeal to me anymore...

My Answer for Fantasy: EARTHDAWN!
For non standard Fantasy: Deadlands Clasic, Star Wars d6. Any non Modern Cuthullu. I love the 20's. Add Spirit of the Century in there and it's pretty much my prefered play run list!

nijineko
12-23-2009, 03:57 PM
earthdawn is quite the interesting setting. ^^

Webhead
12-23-2009, 08:33 PM
Funny thing, other than Call of Cthuhlu I am finding I don't like the 4th edition of any RPG as much as I like the 3rd edition. I find all games made some improvements but way too many changes over all to be the game I liked playing from 1-3e. 4th editions also feel a lot like 1st editions because with all the new stuff they have new problems. So for me although I want to like 4th editions I find myself running 3e versions.

Example Games: D&D, Shadowrun, Vampire, GURPS.

That's a rather interesting analysis...


Aftre Running 4e for 6 month's I finally decided that any version of d&d just doesn't apeal to me anymore...

My Answer for Fantasy: EARTHDAWN!

Cool. I've been tempted to pick up Earthdawn when I heard about the release of 3rd Edition. The one time I played it back in high school, it was rather enjoyable. Any input on what Earthdawn 3E does better/worse than previous editions?


For non standard Fantasy: Deadlands Clasic, Star Wars d6. Any non Modern Cuthullu. I love the 20's. Add Spirit of the Century in there and it's pretty much my prefered play run list!

Very nice list, there! All games that I highly enjoy as well.

cplmac
12-26-2009, 07:05 PM
Our group is using 2E.

Mindbomb
12-26-2009, 09:08 PM
We traded in our 4e books and bought Pathfinder when it came out in hardcover, and what a GREAT change. I had a friend who used to play with us but got tired of the rules bickering between 3e and 4e who came by while we were getting into Pathfinder pretty deep and was absolutely amazed at how smoothly things are now running. Between the Skill consolidation (which I'm not completely sold on) and the Combat Maneuver system which gives you a great easy out for any combat situation and smooths it out completely, not to mention the top notch adventure paths (if you use 'em) I've got to say that I don't think I'll have to worry about changing my fantasy system for the foreseeable future. I have been experimenting with doing some one-off Paranoia ( http://www.mongoosepublishing.com/rpg/series.php?qsSeries=19 ) games between campaigns.

templeorder
12-27-2009, 11:12 AM
Completed working on my own game system. 4e was the final nail in the coffin.

Otakar
12-28-2009, 09:19 PM
I really do hear where you all are coming from in regards to not being fans of 4E. My best friend and fellow gamer won't touch it. He plays 3.5. Gaming with him is done without miniatures and entirely with imagination. I guess I'm just not that deep. Not only is it not a challenge to find players for 4E but I really like the combat strategy. I get a kick out of moving around the battlefield using terrain and flanking. If you check out my blogs you'll see that my games are combat heavy but that's fun for me as a DM. I get to challenge myself as a strategist against the players. I will admit that my players seem to really enjoy the role-playing, of which I do significantly less, but as DM playing all the different NPCs really wears me out. Pathfinder does sound interesting.

cigamnogard
12-28-2009, 09:46 PM
We play 3.5 with tons of figs!

HowwwwL
12-29-2009, 12:45 AM
I like both 4e and Pathfinder. There are aspects of both games that make them both unique in their own way. I think my group overall will prefer Pathfinder though.

Skunkape
12-29-2009, 09:22 AM
I really do hear where you all are coming from in regards to not being fans of 4E. My best friend and fellow gamer won't touch it. He plays 3.5. Gaming with him is done without miniatures and entirely with imagination. I guess I'm just not that deep. Not only is it not a challenge to find players for 4E but I really like the combat strategy. I get a kick out of moving around the battlefield using terrain and flanking. If you check out my blogs you'll see that my games are combat heavy but that's fun for me as a DM. I get to challenge myself as a strategist against the players. I will admit that my players seem to really enjoy the role-playing, of which I do significantly less, but as DM playing all the different NPCs really wears me out. Pathfinder does sound interesting.

We always use minis with 3.5, using combat strategy like you do with 4.

Frobozz
12-29-2009, 10:17 AM
I never use minis. If a combat is large enough or under odd enough conditions that I need illustration, I got a whiteboard. Most combats are done without it.

I've been the mini route and they just slow things down something fierce. In my experience, as soon as you start laying out a tactical grid, players start figuring out ways to totally exploit it.

I don't subscribe to a lot of the combat convention of d20. For example, bastard swords aren't nor will they ever be exotic weapons (it's hard to call the most common sword type of the middle ages "exotic"). I rarely allow attacks of opportunity based on movement technicalities.

Basically, if it doesn't make sense in real life, I don't allow it.

Sascha
12-29-2009, 12:33 PM
Basically, if it doesn't make sense in real life, I don't allow it.
So no dungeons or dragons, then? :P

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
12-29-2009, 01:12 PM
Basically, if it doesn't make sense in real life, I don't allow it.

I'm also guilty of this, and have been for over 30 years. Good call.


So no dungeons or dragons, then? :P

Oh, it's still DnD. :biggrin:

biff beefbroth
12-29-2009, 02:04 PM
i started playing in the early 90s as a kid and quit because of 3rd edition like everyone is doing from 3rd to 4th.....theyre just rules, nothing you cant change if you don't like. i started playing 4th honestly to get back at everyone for not playing 2nd and kind of like it because i realize i can play however i want with the group that i started playing with. its all about the quality of the group, not the rules....of course its hard to learn a new system and it run smooth right off, but this is like going to a new video game controller like say when the x-box came out, but everyone got over it for the most part. quit dwelling on rules and you might just have fun.

cplmac
12-29-2009, 06:15 PM
We always use minis with 3.5, using combat strategy like you do with 4.

Yeah Skunk, our group does the same with 2E.

cigamnogard
12-29-2009, 08:02 PM
I don't subscribe to a lot of the combat convention of d20. For example, bastard swords aren't nor will they ever be exotic weapons (it's hard to call the most common sword type of the middle ages "exotic").
Bastard swords are not exotic if you use them two handed. Using them one handed requires the exotic feat.
--- Merged from Double Post ---

I've been the mini route and they just slow things down something fierce. In my experience, as soon as you start laying out a tactical grid, players start figuring out ways to totally exploit it.

I have lots of DM and players confused at how far apart so and so was - I like the grid I can see exactly where my enemy is. Just like in real life. Imagination is fine but not so good when the DM is trying to kill you and invisioned a totally different scenario than you or another player invisions.
--- Merged from Double Post ---

i started playing in the early 90s as a kid and quit because of 3rd edition like everyone is doing from 3rd to 4th.....theyre just rules, nothing you cant change if you don't like. i started playing 4th honestly to get back at everyone for not playing 2nd and kind of like it because i realize i can play however i want with the group that i started playing with. its all about the quality of the group, not the rules....of course its hard to learn a new system and it run smooth right off, but this is like going to a new video game controller like say when the x-box came out, but everyone got over it for the most part. quit dwelling on rules and you might just have fun.
Okay, but I cannot play a Minotaur in 4.0, or a troll, or a ...and I have played enough humans, elves, half...
--- Merged from Double Post ---

I rarely allow attacks of opportunity based on movement technicalities.

Ever been in a fight?

Webhead
12-29-2009, 09:09 PM
I have lots of DM and players confused at how far apart so and so was - I like the grid I can see exactly where my enemy is. Just like in real life. Imagination is fine but not so good when the DM is trying to kill you and invisioned a totally different scenario than you or another player invisions.

Of course, if you have a DM who is intentionally trying to kill the PCs (especially if he/she does so by way of misdirection), then you have an entirely different problem on your hands...

Richard Littles
12-29-2009, 09:32 PM
Bastard swords are not exotic if you use them two handed. Using them one handed requires the exotic feat.
--- Merged from Double Post ---

I believe what Frobozz is saying that a Bastard Sword shouldn't have been an exotic weapon proficiency to begin with because historically it is just a type of long sword that is one and half handed. It is designed to be used one handed not two since the hilt isn't long enough to support two hands fully gripping the hilt. I'm glad that Fantasy Hero doesn't put in imaginary restrictions like D&D does.


Okay, but I cannot play a Minotaur in 4.0, or a troll, or a ...and I have played enough humans, elves, half...
--- Merged from Double Post ---

I can play any race I so desire in Fantasy Hero as long as the GM allows it. Races are handled much differently in Fantasy Hero than in D&D mainly because there are two packages a player can pick up. One is the racial package which features the characteristics, talents, perks, and complications associated with the race. The other is the cultural package deal that governs the skills that all members of the race possess. I'm very glad that Fantasy Hero has their mechanics open as a toolkit to allow GMs and players the ability to create their own races easily without unbalancing their games. The only books I need to play are the Hero System 6th Edition two volumes with Fantasy Hero being completely optional.


Ever been in a fight?

Yes and in my sword fighting career I've never seen anything that can be remotely described as an Attack of Opportunity. I, however, have seen people fighting and their actions occur within split seconds of each other. The premise behind an AOO is that both participants are unskilled in moving in combat which contradicts the basis of the classes themselves. The only people that I could possibly foresee having an AOO done are people that are not trained in combat at all like peasants and non-combat classes.

tesral
12-29-2009, 11:49 PM
My bastard sword has plenty of grip for two hands. Germanic sword BTW. It light enough a 2.5 pounds to swing one handed but has a two handed grip.

Richard Littles
12-30-2009, 12:17 AM
My bastard sword has plenty of grip for two hands. Germanic sword BTW. It light enough a 2.5 pounds to swing one handed but has a two handed grip.

When was it manufactured? If wasn't manufactured back in the 14th-16th centuries then it's a reproduction that is inaccurate. The real bastard swords had one and half handed hilts which is why they were called bastard swords. They're neither a one handed or a two handed weapon so they acquired the name Bastard to represent this. However, they are still long swords and they were used one handed for the most part.

Webhead
12-30-2009, 01:49 AM
...The only people that I could possibly foresee having an AOO done are people that are not trained in combat at all like peasants and non-combat classes.

Agreed. I can understand the *idea* behind why AoO's were invented but I never once liked the concept, both from a "needless restriction and complexity" and "non-sensical perversion of intent" standpoint.

I do not miss them.

biff beefbroth
12-30-2009, 09:04 AM
actually you can be a minotaur, i cant remember what book its in but i think it might be in the monsters manual...i played with a guy that had one that was a sorcerer named fred. when my character met him the minotaur was wearing robes waving a wand at me and i pointed at him and laughed hysterically until he got me caught in some kind of web spell. now trolls im not sure of but im sure theyre working it in. every edition cuts stuff out like that, we used to all whine about 3rd edition when it came out too but it eventually took over, and this is what people get for buying into it. it wont be but a couple of years till 5th edition comes out and everyone is whining about it.

Skunkape
12-30-2009, 09:31 AM
Yeah Skunk, our group does the same with 2E.

We used them when we were playing 2E also!:D

Frobozz
12-30-2009, 09:49 AM
Naw, it's not about semantics. Heck, if you go by semantics of history vs. semantics of D&D you find that D&D totally got it all wrong. A "bastard sword" for example is the same thing as a "longsword". "Longswords" is a category, of many types of blades, "bastard sword" included... which only the French called them (épée bâtarde). "Katanas" are no better; but what's worse is they suffer from the "Katanas Are Just Better (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/KatanasAreJustBetter)" trope.

It's exactly what Richard Littles hit the nail on the proverbial head with. It's silly imaginary restrictions to make the game mechanics work better. Some may argue you need them, others will argue to ditch them. Me, I ditch them. Bastard swords are martial weapons in my games as are samurai swords. Unless the actual usage of the weapon is unique, like a boomerang or a kusari gama, it's not "exotic".

tesral
12-30-2009, 10:33 AM
Agreed. I can understand the *idea* behind why AoO's were invented but I never once liked the concept, both from a "needless restriction and complexity" and "non-nonsensical perversion of intent" standpoint.

I do not miss them.

That and they seem to target casters more than other classes. I only use them in cases of a critical fumble in combat. Roll a one and you take a chance to your foe getting in another hit. That is it. It also assures that the fighters will never be anything but dumb jocks as you most take tumble to avoid those nasty AoO from big monsters that are nasty enough as it is.



Naw, it's not about semantics. Heck, if you go by semantics of history vs. semantics of D&D you find that D&D totally got it all wrong. A "bastard sword" for example is the same thing as a "longsword". "Longswords" is a category, of many types of blades, "bastard sword" included... which only the French called them (épée bâtarde). "Katanas" are no better; but what's worse is they suffer from the "Katanas Are Just Better (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/KatanasAreJustBetter)" trope.

D&D has abused common terms to the point of uselessness. Bastard sword, chain mail, breastplate, dozens of others. Even monsters get dragged into the act. Kobolds are nothing like what the Germanic mining goblin of the old days was, there was ONE Medusa. Medusa was her name, not her species. She was on of the three Gorgons, sisters incidentally, not iron bulls. What they did to the Banshee was awful. The Banshee is a harbinger, it never hurts anyone, directly. In the old Gaelic it means "female spirit". They tend to be attached to given families, usually due to some crime or tragic event and they will keen, which is a common mourning cry of Irish women, to foretell the passing of some figure in the family, usually the patriarch.

It is bad enough that you cannot have an intelligent conversation with a D&D player about weapons and mythology because all they know is the game terms. Most have no idea these words and creatures had meaning before D&D.


And the sword is an accurate reproduction of an original sword in a museum. A longsword with a two handed hilt. What that means is superior balance. The heavy blade is easily swung and you can use any part of the sword as a weapon. The old fight manuals show strikes with the pommel and the cross guard as well as the blade. While not sharp I would not want to be hit with that cross guard.

cigamnogard
12-30-2009, 10:44 AM
When was it manufactured? If wasn't manufactured back in the 14th-16th centuries then it's a reproduction that is inaccurate. The real bastard swords had one and half handed hilts which is why they were called bastard swords. They're neither a one handed or a two handed weapon so they acquired the name Bastard to represent this. However, they are still long swords and they were used one handed for the most part.

Okay, if we go with this arguement then your hands are the same size as someone from that time period?
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it wont be but a couple of years till 5th edition comes out and everyone is whining about it.
Actually, I am waiting for the 5th edition = skipping 4th.
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actually you can be a minotaur, i cant remember what book its in but i think it might be in the monsters manual..
No, not that I have seen.
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Of course, if you have a DM who is intentionally trying to kill the PCs (especially if he/she does so by way of misdirection), then you have an entirely different problem on your hands...
So, your bad guys just want to lame the PC's?
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Yes and in my sword fighting career I've never seen anything that can be remotely described as an Attack of Opportunity. I, however, have seen people fighting and their actions occur within split seconds of each other. The premise behind an AOO is that both participants are unskilled in moving in combat which contradicts the basis of the classes themselves. The only people that I could possibly foresee having an AOO done are people that are not trained in combat at all like peasants and non-combat classes.
Sorry, that's not a fight. That's you versus an opponent not a fight or a bar room brawl where multiple "players" are in the field.

templeorder
12-30-2009, 12:53 PM
The rules are just a structure to help you envision HOW something can be accomplished in terms of mechanics. I ignore 3e/4e type 'mechanic for everything' approach and just go with fluid story based play and miniatures... I prefer a rule sets which are concept based rather than having many situational rules - just use a flavor that best suits what you are trying to achieve.

Richard Littles
12-30-2009, 02:30 PM
Okay, if we go with this arguement then your hands are the same size as someone from that time period?

Like I said the hilts are a standard size to accommodate one and a half hands which is what makes a bastard sword what it is.


Sorry, that's not a fight. That's you versus an opponent not a fight or a bar room brawl where multiple "players" are in the field.

Actually, it was a fight with upwards to 150 people per side on the battlefield. I love how you know exactly what I did fighting with swords and medieval weapons as well as how many people actually participated.

Frobozz
12-30-2009, 04:28 PM
Actually, it was a fight with upwards to 150 people per side on the battlefield. I love how you know exactly what I did fighting with swords and medieval weapons as well as how many people actually participated.

Pennsic War by chance? :)

I've had formal sword training as well. Though my swordsmaster did teach SCA style fighting, he also taught a more advanced western armored martial style with moves that would disqualify you in an SCA event. Things like spinning moves, leg-hooking, groin hits, below the knee hits, etc. The armor we used was a good degree heavier than SCA standard though and was under more controlled conditions. We also did some live-steel fighting. Multiple weapon forms. You don't respect the amount of room a greatsword takes to wield until you've done it. You need a fair bit more than a 5ft box. ;)

I've been to a few Pennsic wars but never participated in any since I was only interested in the martial aspect of weapons fighting. Many of the students in my martial arts class did though and mopped up the field as pretty darned good fighters. :D

tesral
12-30-2009, 04:49 PM
Pennsic War by chance? :)

I've had formal sword training as well. Though my swordsmaster did teach SCA style fighting, he also taught a more advanced western armored martial style with moves that would disqualify you in an SCA event. Things like spinning moves, leg-hooking, groin hits, below the knee hits, etc. The armor we used was a good degree heavier than SCA standard though and was under more controlled conditions. We also did some live-steel fighting. Multiple weapon forms. You don't respect the amount of room a greatsword takes to wield until you've done it. You need a fair bit more than a 5ft box. ;)


Great sword from 5 to 7 foot long (depending on the style and time period). If the man never moves (silly I know) and you consider the arm reach of the fighter you are looking at a 15 foot box of maximum reach on average.

I play with mine in the living room, it's a little over four foot long and I'm very careful about how I swing it. Way to easy to clip a wall or the ceiling.

So the two handed weapon giving you "reach" is about right. D&D fighting is too static and too ridged, but it was not intended to be a simulation.

Richard Littles
12-30-2009, 05:08 PM
Pennsic War by chance? :)

I've had formal sword training as well. Though my swordsmaster did teach SCA style fighting, he also taught a more advanced western armored martial style with moves that would disqualify you in an SCA event. Things like spinning moves, leg-hooking, groin hits, below the knee hits, etc. The armor we used was a good degree heavier than SCA standard though and was under more controlled conditions. We also did some live-steel fighting. Multiple weapon forms. You don't respect the amount of room a greatsword takes to wield until you've done it. You need a fair bit more than a 5ft box. ;)

I've been to a few Pennsic wars but never participated in any since I was only interested in the martial aspect of weapons fighting. Many of the students in my martial arts class did though and mopped up the field as pretty darned good fighters. :D

When I was doing medieval fighting it was with Amtgard, which was pretty cool in that it incorporated fantasy classes with melee fighting. It was through Amtgard that I met my first sensei and started learning Kendo. The weapons we used in Amtgard were made from pvc pipe and blue foam, weighted for historical accuracy, for safety reasons. People did wear armor and the whole nine yards like the SCA and Markland.

There was a lot of different techniques and fighting styles present so it wasn't all just European style fighting. We learned from each other and had fun doing it.The best fighters were typically asked by Markland to join their group to fight with live steel and to do exhibitions at Ren Faires. I was asked to join, but turned it down due to fighting with live steel and there was a pretty good chance of suffering a life threatening injury.

From my experiences in Amtgard, I was exposed to how real medieval combat took place along with the arms and armor used. A lot of what is in D&D and typical fantasy rpgs are pure Hollywood with no basis in reality like the bastard sword. Another Hollywoodism is using swords to block an opponents weapon since many of the fighters in medieval times didn't use swords for blocking, but rather they would sidestep a blow then counter with their own. Attacks of opportunity doesn't make sense since in my experience with combat is that you never left yourself open for an attack while moving.

The scariest thing I ever saw in Amtgard was the polearm platoon. It was a group of 15 guys that used only a polearm for fighting and they would charge across the battlefield in formation. I believe they were using halberds for their weapons, so it was pretty awe inspiring to see a mass of 15 guys in two ranks with their 8 foot long halberds slamming into an opposing mass of troops. The opposing troops were armed with a variety of swords, maces, and flails. Their weapons didn't have the reach compared to the polearm platoon, so by the time they had actually made contact with the polearm platoon they were dead. A pretty awesome sight even today to think back on it.

EDIT: The weapon style I used in Amtgard was Ni Ten Ichi Ryu, which is a dual sword Kendo style. My first weapons I used were dual bastard swords then switched to claymore/long sword combo. I didn't baseball swing my claymore but instead relied upon moving the tip only for striking. The long sword I used for blocking or doing simultaneous attacks with the claymore. People were pretty intimidated by me running around with those weapons and usually met a quick 'death' because I was able to finesse the claymore to strike exactly where I wanted it to. I was also always moving around my opponents to disorient them and to maintain the momentum of the fight in my favor. Very few people could keep up with me, except for my sensei. Most of the times that I had 'died' during combat was from being ambushed by multiple attackers from behind.

cigamnogard
12-30-2009, 05:10 PM
Actually, it was a fight with upwards to 150 people per side on the battlefield. I love how you know exactly what I did fighting with swords and medieval weapons as well as how many people actually participated.
Haven't a clue but you are saying with 150 people there was not a single opportunity for an attack of opportunity - you are full of...beans.

Frobozz
12-30-2009, 05:11 PM
Great sword from 5 to 7 foot long (depending on the style and time period). If the man never moves (silly I know) and you consider the arm reach of the fighter you are looking at a 15 foot box of maximum reach on average.

I play with mine in the living room, it's a little over four foot long and I'm very careful about how I swing it. Way to easy to clip a wall or the ceiling.

So the two handed weapon giving you "reach" is about right. D&D fighting is too static and too ridged, but it was not intended to be a simulation.

Yea, mine's 5'4" tip to pommel and I can only practice with it outdoors. I feel your pain. In this winter I only play with knives and hand axes. Overhead moves tend to catch light fixtures as I learned once with a short blade in my college dorm room many moons ago. :redface:
I was finding glass shards from that diffuser for years after that one...

When I do use a whiteboard to show the tactics of a complex combat, I do rearrange the combatants each round as I see fit just to make it seem more "action oriented". Sometimes, it's to the player's benefit, sometimes not. It all depends on the dice rolls. For hits, I tend to reorient in the attacker's favor. One time, in a fight in the Underdark, I positioned a player and a drow elf he was fighting near a cliff into a bottomless chasm (at least bottomless in that I as DM I figured it was very deep and if anyone wanted to see how deep, I'd cross that bridge when I got to it). When the player saw the new orientation and that the drow had his back to the cliff, his eyes lit up and next initiative round he goes "I boot him off the ledge!"

I did a bit of a double-take since I didn't see it when I moved them but he was right, the drow was only a few feet from a lethal fall and had his back to it. I rolled a quick sense motive for the drow to see if he were to get any sudden, inspirational bonus when he saw the kick coming; he failed, the player booted, connected, and an opposed strength check later had the drow tumbling to a very messy death. The player's next simple action was to spit off the cliff with a "Good riddance!"

It's the kind of epic scene that he still talks about when we play today. :)

@Richard: Nice! Sounds like some good experiences! Echo on the polearms, it's just brutal how deadly those things can be in a wall configuration. My swordsmaster used to teach 2-rank shield-wall tactics to the Cleveland police force for riot-tactics.

biff beefbroth
12-30-2009, 05:17 PM
yes you can play a minotaur, i can see it right now on the character builder that i have downloaded straight from wizards of the coast. i was wrong about it being one of the ones in the monsters manual but it is in dragon #369 for sure. in the character builder im seeing dragonborn, dwarf, eladrin, elf, half-elf, halfling, human, tiefling, deva, gnome, goliath, half-orc, longtooth shifter, razorclaw shifter, bladeling, bugbear, doppelganger, drow, genasi, githyanki, githerazi, gnoll, goblin, hobgoblin, kobold, MINOTAUR, orc, shadar-kai, and warforged. this is not even with an update and theres already plenty to chose from within that list other than humans and elves.

Richard Littles
12-30-2009, 05:19 PM
Haven't a clue but you are saying with 150 people there was not a single opportunity for an attack of opportunity - you are full of...beans.

No single attacks of opportunity did I ever see from anyone that was skilled in fighting on a battlefield with a large number of combatants. Do you have any experience with medieval weapons and large scale battles?

cigamnogard
12-30-2009, 05:21 PM
It's exactly what Richard Littles hit the nail on the proverbial head with. It's silly imaginary restrictions to make the game mechanics work better. Some may argue you need them, others will argue to ditch them. Me, I ditch them. Bastard swords are martial weapons in my games as are samurai swords. Unless the actual usage of the weapon is unique, like a boomerang or a kusari gama, it's not "exotic".
But they are a martial weapon that if you want to use it one handed you require a feat for (in 3.5).

tesral
12-30-2009, 05:23 PM
I had a similar scene the other way around. A player was very arrogant about his PC. Changes up the stairs that wrapped around the towner keep (no rail) and demanded entrance from the Orcs.

They presented him with a phalanx of spears in the open doorway. "I grab a spear and pull on it!" said he.

"He gives it to you." Said I. "Now, roll balance to see if you stay on the ledge after not getting the resistance you expected."

He failed. Ended up in the jagged rock at the bottom (now they knew why it was there) with the self same spear sticking out of his chest.

cigamnogard
12-30-2009, 05:30 PM
No single attacks of opportunity did I ever see from anyone that was skilled in fighting on a battlefield with a large number of combatants. Do you have any experience with medieval weapons and large scale battles?


I suppose I could make up a story or a wild tale that I was but no.

I am a history student.
I have been in a few bar fights (which I did not start but was dragged into).
I have taken several years of Judo.
I have taken street fighting lessons from a bouncer from a biker bar.
I am in the Navy.
But no - no medieval battles or large scale mock "events". But all my confrontations have been very real and very dangerous.
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One time, in a fight in the Underdark, I positioned a player and a drow elf he was fighting near a cliff into a bottomless chasm (at least bottomless in that I as DM I figured it was very deep and if anyone wanted to see how deep, I'd cross that bridge when I got to it). When the player saw the new orientation and that the drow had his back to the cliff, his eyes lit up and next initiative round he goes "I boot him off the ledge!"

I did a bit of a double-take since I didn't see it when I moved them but he was right, the drow was only a few feet from a lethal fall and had his back to it. I rolled a quick sense motive for the drow to see if he were to get any sudden, inspirational bonus when he saw the kick coming; he failed, the player booted, connected, and an opposed strength check later had the drow tumbling to a very messy death. The player's next simple action was to spit off the cliff with a "Good riddance!"

Which is why we always play on a grid.

Richard Littles
12-30-2009, 05:54 PM
I suppose I could make up a story or a wild tale that I was but no.

I am a history student.
I have been in a few bar fights (which I did not start but was dragged into).
I have taken several years of Judo.
I have taken street fighting lessons from a bouncer from a biker bar.
I am in the Navy.

But no - no medieval battles or large scale mock "events". But all my confrontations have been very real and very dangerous.

All of the battles I've participated in as a member of Amtgard I've seen injuries ranging from a simple bruise all the way up to broken bones and concussions. The fighting was real and the danger of injury was real. I've been hit with a few weapons that didn't have enough foam on them or the foam had split apart upon contact due to bad construction. I was lucky I didn't have a broken arm or leg. If you think that quarter to one inch thick pvc pipe doesn't hurt you'd be severely mistaken, especially when swung at full force. Heck, due to my Kendo training I've nearly knocked people out in Amtgard due to my first shot always being to their head. In Amtgard, head shots are not allowed because there is too great of a risk for death from a concussion while in Kendo the first strike is usually to head since it's a killing blow. Armor is not a requirement to fight in Amtgard because a properly constructed weapon will not do any damage or any ill effects. In short, there's nothing 'mock' about it and the fights are definitely not choreographed in any way. You use your skills in fighting pure and simple.

Medieval sword fighting groups are ranked according to the chance of injury a person can suffer from and weapon construction. Level 3 groups are like Pennic and Amtgard where they fight with pvc with foam hitting surfaces. Typical injuries range from bruises up to broken bones. Free form and free style combat is the norm. You are only as good as your skills with weapons.

Level 2 is SCA which uses wooden weapons and real armor is a requirement before setting foot on the battlefield. Typical injuries are broken bones and death from unusual circumstances like the wooden weapon hitting someone in the head after their helmet fell off. SCA is the same as Amtgard in regards to how combat unfolds.

Level 1 is Markland which uses live steel and armor. Typical injuries are cuts on exposed areas up to death from limb severance. All fights in Markland style are choreographed before hand due to the risk of death.

I've also studied history with an emphasis on American History 1620-1875 since I was 12 and I'm 40 now. I have studied medieval combat history and their styles from both the Europeans and Japanese. I'm well versed in Kendo due to the 12 years of training I've done. In studying and practicing Kendo I have used bokken and shinai. Both can be lethal in the right hands. Master Musashi's final 300 duels were done with a shinai and he killed all of his opponents with them.

cigamnogard
12-30-2009, 05:56 PM
I've also studied history with an emphasis on American History 1620-1875 since I was 12 and I'm 40 now.
Somehow, I am not surprised.

Meanwhile, not a single AoO - okay, sounds like you know better than me.

Richard Littles
12-30-2009, 06:02 PM
Somehow, I am not surprised.

Knowing history makes me a better writer in building carefully constructed plots and worlds. :) It shows how events unfold through cause and effect.

cigamnogard
12-30-2009, 06:04 PM
Knowing history makes me a better writer in building carefully constructed plots and worlds. :) It shows how events unfold through cause and effect.
I'll say. :lie:
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I've also studied history with an emphasis on American History 1620-1875 since I was 12 and I'm 40 now. I
But, I'll bet when you say American history you don't include Canada or Mexico - or any country in Central or South America...even though you're 40.

However, as you know more than me I thought I would check out a site to become more informed:

http://www.amtgard-eh.com/

There is a video there I watched roughly two minutes of. I suggest you watch what I saw at 1.28 and 1.33 - to me an non-medieval battler it looks like AoO's. But, what do I know...

Richard Littles
12-30-2009, 07:02 PM
I'll say.
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But, I'll bet when you say American history you don't include Canada or Mexico - or any country in Central or South America...even though you're 40.

Actually, it does includes both North and South America, but my primary focus is on the US. History as a whole fascinates me and there's a lot of mistakes to learn from in it.


Meanwhile, not a single AoO - okay, sounds like you know better than me.

Nope, I've never seen a single AoO happen in battlefield conditions. When it comes to this subject I do have practical experience in it. Bastard swords are nothing more than a one and half handed long sword that was the primary fighting weapon from the 14th-16th centuries. It was used primarily one handed with a shield. What this means is that the authors of D&D failed at basic historical research by making the most common long sword as an 'exotic' weapon. They also lack experience with actual medieval combat in the tactics they presented in 3.x. A skilled combatant would incorporate movement into the entirety of combat allowing them to move freely near opponents while not leaving any opportunities for their opponents to strike at them freely.

Going back to exotic weapons, the authors' inclusion of exotic weapons in the core of the game shows a bias against those cultures that used those weapons primarily. The bias in D&D and the majority of fantasy rpgs is Euro-centric. Would a katana be an exotic weapon to the people that used it as a primary weapon? No, it wouldn't. Would khopeshes' or straight bladed weapons be exotic to the culture that used a katana? Not hardly, since the Japanese and other Asian countries used both straight and curved blades. The only place where a curved blade was not the norm was western Europe and that was due to their sword crafting/metal forging techniques. This also depended upon where at in western Europe since in Spain and Portugal khopeshes and curved blades were common because of the Moors controlling the majority of both countries.

HowwwwL
12-30-2009, 07:05 PM
What this means is that the authors of D&D failed at basic historical research by making the most common long sword as an 'exotic' weapon. They also lack experience with actual medieval combat in the tactics they presented in 3.x.

I blame Monte Cook... He should have caught this when he designed 3.x...
:biggrin:

tesral
12-30-2009, 07:28 PM
There is always my solution...Fix the damn rules.

wizarddog
12-30-2009, 07:29 PM
They also lack experience with actual medieval combat in the tactics they presented in 3.x. A skill combatant would incorporate movement into the entirety of combat allowing them to move freely near opponents while not leaving any opportunities for their opponents to strike at them freely.

Isn't that what a 5 foot step would be? D&D is a level based system. The more levels you have, the better the fighter. Feats allow you to perform certain maneuverers, including moving on the battlefield without getting hit. That just how the system works. It probably is not the best system to simulate real fighting.

There is no way that the game from 1e-4e is expected to be realistic in its combat.4e makes no claims otherwise and readily admits to it. The setting is based on fantasy literature. While having a real world, folklore, and historical backgrounds adds to enrichment to the game, it is not necessary. The Hollywood interpretation is what its all being based on... And it should. Otherwise, it would be analogues of having your PC dying of the plague: realistic but quite boring.

I am a easy going player. I like playing in various settings and appreciate those who create very stimulating worlds. But I could give a rats ass whether bastard swords are really longswords or ringmail is historically real armor. It unsettles me when DM's have a beef with those sort of things. I know a DM can limit whatever they want in their game, but I rather have a DM limits/allows to maintain enjoyment of the game rather to enforce their own personal bias.

Richard Littles
12-30-2009, 08:07 PM
There is always my solution...Fix the damn rules.

That's a good solution. I like mine as well which is to play something else that does everything you want it to do like Fantasy Hero.


Isn't that what a 5 foot step would be? D&D is a level based system. The more levels you have, the better the fighter. Feats allow you to perform certain maneuverers, including moving on the battlefield without getting hit. That just how the system works. It probably is not the best system to simulate real fighting.

Why bother including exceptions to the problem when the easiest way is to remove the original problem to begin with? I don't care for the feats or anything that was introduced into 3.x because I don't agree with the plateau exception based game design philosophy. I prefer the more organic approach of a person starts out competent and slowly progresses to the point of being super competent that occurs naturally. Heroic is a state of mind and a function of story not a function of the system.

When specifically talking about Feats, it gives the impression that your character is too stupid to be able to do this maneuver even though the character should know this from his or her training. This is one of the reasons of why I find pre-3.x to be superior to post-3.x. The only thing limiting the character was the player's imagination on what can happen in combat.


There is no way that the game from 1e-4e is expected to be realistic in its combat.4e makes no claims otherwise and readily admits to it. The setting is based on fantasy literature. While having a real world, folklore, and historical backgrounds adds to enrichment to the game, it is not necessary. The Hollywood interpretation is what its all being based on... And it should. Otherwise, it would be analogues of having your PC dying of the plague: realistic but quite boring.

Originally, D&D started out as a miniature wargame that did take into account combat realism. Post Chainmail it has gotten away from it. One can do cinematic feeling combat while maintaining realism. The Hero System does this very well by the inclusion of optional rules to combat. The base rules are very cinematic over the top. Being realistic and cinematic aren't inclusive to each other to the point of it's either or proposition. Take the movie series Die Hard for example. As the story progresses John does take realistic damage and the effects are incorporated into the progression of the story to span across different films. Mad Max is another fine example of this over the top action yet with realistic consequences.


I am a easy going player. I like playing in various settings and appreciate those who create very stimulating worlds. But I could give a rats ass whether bastard swords are really longswords or ringmail is historically real armor. It unsettles me when DM's have a beef with those sort of things. I know a DM can limit whatever they want in their game, but I rather have a DM limits/allows to maintain enjoyment of the game rather to enforce their own personal bias.

As a game designer, I do care for one simple fact, which is believability and consistency. Exception based rules, including their surrounding philosophy, like D&D are filled with situations that break believability and consistency within the world itself. The only way to change certain aspects of the system to suit your specific setting is by altering the core systems themselves and inserting your exception. A core system should be internally consistent without the use of exceptions since it's a more unified whole. This unified whole is what makes the game itself believable and consistent with itself.

Webhead
12-30-2009, 08:48 PM
So, your bad guys just want to lame the PC's?

No, I'm referring to the "DM/GM" trying to kill the PCs not the NPC "bad guys". There's a difference between a GM who plays smart and brutal and a GM who is out to kill characters.


I have lots of DM and players confused at how far apart so and so was - I like the grid I can see exactly where my enemy is. Just like in real life. Imagination is fine but not so good when the DM is trying to kill you and invisioned a totally different scenario than you or another player invisions.

A DM/GM who intentionally tries to take advantage of player confusion in order to get an advantage toward punishing the characters is dipping dangerously into an "us versus them" mentality which can potentially ruin the game and/or group.

wizarddog
12-30-2009, 09:07 PM
I understand your taking this from a game designer perspective and respect with most of what you have to say... but I have a few problems with D&D systems earlier than 3.x.

I'm not going to very elegant in my argument as you are so I will stick only to a few points that I would like to counter:



When specifically talking about Feats, it gives the impression that your character is too stupid to be able to do this maneuver even though the character should know this from his or her training. This is one of the reasons of why I find pre-3.x to be superior to post-3.x. The only thing limiting the character was the player's imagination on what can happen in combat.


That's not entirely true. The limiting factor was the DM's Imagination and ability to judge what could or could not be done. Without mechanics, DM's had to do that on the fly and were usually (in my experience) not consistent. 3x at least gave mechanics that could be understood by player and DM. By not having mechanics to apply these maneuvers, you limit a player because his reliance falls on the DM. I just don't trust my DM(s) to be consistent on such things. (Though I plan on playing a 1e game at the end of January and I will see what sort of things I can get away with ;))

In addition, I would challenge the notion that feats imply you don't know how to do a maneuver. Almost all maneuvers in 3.x could be done in combat (disarming,trip,feint, sunder, etc.) .... those who took feats simply were better at it. It is a logical system for a level based system.

Hero system is not a level based system, and while I did appreciate it when playing Champions for allowing me to make any kind of hero I wanted, it became more of a book keeping exercise. Not knocking the system, just don't think point based systems should be compared to level based systems. Nor do I think one is superior than another. They are just different.

cplmac
12-30-2009, 09:10 PM
No, I'm referring to the "DM/GM" trying to kill the PCs not the NPC "bad guys". There's a difference between a GM who plays smart and brutal and a GM who is out to kill characters.



A DM/GM who intentionally tries to take advantage of player confusion in order to get an advantage toward punishing the characters is dipping dangerously into an "us versus them" mentality which can potentially ruin the game and/or group.

Very well said, Webhead. Then again, that's why you are one of the GM Advisors.

Webhead
12-30-2009, 09:31 PM
...By not having mechanics to apply these maneuvers, you limit a player because his reliance falls on the DM. I just don't trust my DM(s) to be consistent on such things...

That is one of the most important and, sadly, seemingly most rapidly evaporating concepts in the success of a role playing group: trusting the GM.

The GM should feel comfortable that his players will not complain about his every ruling and the players should feel comfortable that the GM's rulings are intended to enhance the game in some way. "Enhance" doesn't mean "tip the scales in the players' favor" but rather, make the game more engaging/challenging/entertaining/thought-provoking/surprising.

Richard Littles
12-30-2009, 10:34 PM
I understand your taking this from a game designer perspective and respect with most of what you have to say... but I have a few problems with D&D systems earlier than 3.x.

I'm not going to very elegant in my argument as you are so I will stick only to a few points that I would like to counter:

That's not entirely true. The limiting factor was the DM's Imagination and ability to judge what could or could not be done. Without mechanics, DM's had to do that on the fly and were usually (in my experience) not consistent. 3x at least gave mechanics that could be understood by player and DM. By not having mechanics to apply these maneuvers, you limit a player because his reliance falls on the DM. I just don't trust my DM(s) to be consistent on such things. (Though I plan on playing a 1e game at the end of January and I will see what sort of things I can get away with ;))

If you do not trust the DM/GM to be fair in your ruling then you should find a different game. A good DM/GM will try to be as consistent as possible in their rulings and to give players an equal chance at doing something with their imagination in the game from the situations the DM/GM has presented. Also, one of a DM/GM's primary jobs is to remain impartial and to rule fairly on things that the rules cannot cover. Back to trusting a DM/GM, then what is the point of them if the rules do everything for you?


In addition, I would challenge the notion that feats imply you don't know how to do a maneuver. Almost all maneuvers in 3.x could be done in combat (disarming,trip,feint, sunder, etc.) .... those who took feats simply were better at it. It is a logical system for a level based system.

Challenge away, but the way the rules are written in 3.x for feats that if the character does not have the feat they are restricted from doing said feat. A character cannot perform the feat in question if they do not have it. A limited number of feats by their wording allow for characters to do them untrained but at severe penalties.


Hero system is not a level based system, and while I did appreciate it when playing Champions for allowing me to make any kind of hero I wanted, it became more of a book keeping exercise. Not knocking the system, just don't think point based systems should be compared to level based systems. Nor do I think one is superior than another. They are just different.

I challenge you to find me one single RPG that has been published since the publishing of the rpgs that do not have book keeping. They all are an exercise in doing it. Since the beginning of rpgs in the 70s there has always been two distinct types of mechanics present, which are class/level based and point based free form. There were three types of dice mechanics present as well that are d20, d100, and d6. Due to this history it is fair to compare Fantasy Hero with D&D and to discuss which aspects are better by that comparison.

What makes Hero, in all its flavors, better than D&D's d20 class/level based system is that it is a unified set of rules with no exceptions. Since it has no exceptions all of the options are presented and making it a toolkit to let GMs/players to create the exact type of game they want. Part of Hero is that it is point based with no classes or levels unless the GM wants them. Character progression is natural with the character getting slowly better with time. Experience points that are earned in each session are available to be spent by the player on character abilities right away. I don't know about you, but the more I do something the better I get without a plateau in ability. Setting is removed from the core mechanics due to the fact that settings create exceptions to the unified rules. Points, used in conjunction with stats like Dexterity, give a better indication if an encounter or creature is equal to the party.

D&D is exception based, meaning that anything that contradicts the original rules is an exception. Over time the exceptions introduce rules and power creep which makes it difficult for DMs to know all the rules since there are so many books out there. With a class/level system the DM and players are straight jacketed into the mindset of the authors. Changing the rules to fit your ideas are troublesome and unbalancing because you have to add in a bunch of exceptions to the already numerous exceptions present. You also having to inform your players that this is how your exceptions work in conjunction with the authors' bias. With levels your character is stuck at x ability until there's this magic ding that lets them get better. This doesn't feel believable to players since it's an artificial construct based on the authors' bias. Progression is slow and stagnant because of the exponential requirements of experience. A side effect of levels is the difficulty in balancing a creature or encounter against the power level of the characters. By design not all classes are equal, so it makes it hard to find where the balance is.

However, do not take this to mean that this is a my way or the highway situation. To me, as a player, GM, and game designer, points based systems allows me the freedom to create everything I need for my world without having to worry about balancing my exceptions with the core rules. My exceptions are simply the options I chose that are available in the core rules and excluding what I don't want. To me that is what makes Hero and GURPS superior to D&D and other class/level based systems.

biff beefbroth
12-31-2009, 01:54 AM
i honestly think any roleplaying system can be fun and if youre not having fun its the dm, other players, or your fault. ive had fun in every system ive played that had a good GM and players. just try not picking it apart and if the rules say it and the GM enforces them just go with it....its just a game guys

P.S. Wurz mah sippycup

tesral
12-31-2009, 08:55 AM
In addition, I would challenge the notion that feats imply you don't know how to do a maneuver. Almost all maneuvers in 3.x could be done in combat (disarming,trip,feint, sunder, etc.) .... those who took feats simply were better at it. It is a logical system for a level based system.



D&D rules are no based. That is the answer is no, unless you have this special ability, or no, but you can try at a minus that will assure you fail. The more I play the book straight game the less I like it. Why? The Answer is always No.

cigamnogard
12-31-2009, 10:17 AM
Actually, it does includes both North and South America, but my primary focus is on the US. History as a whole fascinates me and there's a lot of mistakes to learn from in it.

Love how you retroactively change your tune everytime you make one.
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Nope, I've never seen a single AoO happen in battlefield conditions. When it comes to this subject I do have practical experience in it.
Then I strongly suggest you get your prescription changed and/or at least watch the clip from the site I posted earlier. Instead of ignoring the point as if it was not there - much like all the AoOs you do not see.

--- Merged from Double Post ---

D&D rules are no based. That is the answer is no, unless you have this special ability, or no, but you can try at a minus that will assure you fail. The more I play the book straight game the less I like it. Why? The Answer is always No.
What? Do I have a different rulebook? My Phb has this page that states you can sunder a weapon but suffer an AoO. With the improved sunder feat you do not. How is that a "no"? Sure there is a minus but there should be as your focus is changed from as some in hockey say - 'from the player to the puck'.
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A DM/GM who intentionally tries to take advantage of player confusion in order to get an advantage toward punishing the characters is dipping dangerously into an "us versus them" mentality which can potentially ruin the game and/or group.
And what about all the accidents (that are not intentional):
-"Whoops did I forget to mention..."
-"Did you guys not hear me when I said..."

Richard Littles
12-31-2009, 10:35 AM
Love how you retroactively change your tune everytime you make one.

I don't know what your problem is, but I clarified exactly what I meant by what my focus in studying American history was. I further provided why I have studied it and how I use it. You used the emoticon for a liar which is hardly contributing to the discussion regarding bastard swords as an exotic weapon proficiency or AoOs because you are calling someone a liar. I haven't seen you state exactly what your focus is in studying history nor have I criticized you for it.


Then I strongly suggest you get your prescription changed and/or at least watch the clip from the site I posted earlier. Instead of ignoring the point as if it was not there - much like all the AoOs you do not see.

I didn't see a link to any video in any of your replies. I, and others that do have medieval combat experience, have stated that we did not see any attacks of opportunity because we knew how to move in combat. An attack of opportunity as defined by the rules of D&D 3.x states that when moving away from or through a threatened square enables the creature that controls the threatened square a free attack during movement. As stated by myself and others that we haven't seen anything like that occur in all of the combat we've participated in. We did state that our movements in combat were designed to prohibit a free attack against us.

One final thing I have to say is that you should really try to keep it civil towards people on here. This is a discussion on why people aren't playing D&D 4E. I do not appreciate being called a liar by you nor your antagonistic attitude towards myself. I have been extremely respectful towards you and only discussed the points that directly related to the issue at hand. In short, cool it with the antics and keep it civilized.

EDIT: After going back through your posts again I looked at the video you found. At 1:28 seconds, that is a normal attack not an AoO as defined by the D&D 3.x rules. An AoO is a free attack on top of the person's regular attacks that occur in the movement part of the turn. At this juncture, both participants swing with the one moving into attack range swinging a split second after the the defender does. The defender did not get a 'free' attack on top of it.

At 1:33, the woman is dead from the fighting around her. There wasn't any attacks of opportunity there either. Since according to the rules of Amtgard that if you die you are to move your arms down to your sides and take a non-combat stance. The other people stopped fighting since they were all on the same side and the woman they were fighting was classified as dead, so what they were doing doesn't qualify as per the rules of D&D 3.x as being an attack of opportunity. Combat was over at that point.

Webhead
12-31-2009, 11:04 AM
And what about all the accidents (that are not intentional):
-"Whoops did I forget to mention..."
-"Did you guys not hear me when I said..."

One of the central duties of a GM is to be fair in your rulings and to recognize when the players have been wrongfully disadvantaged.

Such occurances are natural, as long as it is not used as an excuse to punish the players or characters. We are human. No matter how well we think we have mastered the rules or our ability to track and interpret them, we will make mistakes from time to time. It will happen, whether you have a written rule for every situation or not.

When such a "whoops" situation occurs, a responsible GM recognizes that it isn't appropriate to retroactively punish for factors that the players/characters were not, but should have been, aware of.

Example, if the GM describes a dungeon room and the players proceed to enter and explore it and then the GM remembers 3 rounds later that the floor is supposed to be visably covered with acid (which the characters would have been able to notice upon first viewing the room), it is unfair and irresponsible for the GM to then declare that all the PCs must now take 3 rounds worth of acid damage. That's just poor and cruel GMing.

To rectify this mistake, the GM could persue several options such as allowing a "do-over" from the point just before the characters enter the room, change the scenario such that the acid only just now begins to flood the room or just remove the acid from the encounter entirely (and perhaps move it to a different room in the dungeon if he's feeling devilish). Any of these options would be preferable to the players and would demonstrate that the GM is working toward being "fair" and not simply trying to "trick" them.

A common GMing mistake is thinking that the GM's job is to "beat" the players. That's not really so. He is responsible for "challenging" the players, yes, but not to do everything in his power to "end" their characters.

cigamnogard
12-31-2009, 11:50 AM
I haven't seen you state exactly what your focus is in studying history nor have I criticized you for it.

I am working on my history degree. In Canada until you work on your doctorate there is no "focus" you study a wide range of 'histories'. Criticise away.
--- Merged from Double Post ---

You used the emoticon for a liar which is hardly contributing to the discussion regarding bastard swords as an exotic weapon proficiency or AoOs because you are calling someone a liar.

Sorry - I call a spade a spade.
--- Merged from Double Post ---


A common GMing mistake is thinking that the GM's job is to "beat" the players. That's not really so. He is responsible for "challenging" the players, yes, but not to do everything in his power to "end" their characters.
Yes, I agree it is a common GM/DM mistake and you must also agree that quite a few GM/DM will also both make the mistake unintentionally and intentionally.

Richard Littles
12-31-2009, 12:01 PM
I am working on my history degree. In Canada until you work on your doctorate there is no "focus" you study a wide range of 'histories'. Criticise away.

In the United States, historians and those that study history often focus on one particular section of history.


Sorry - I call a spade a spade.

It's called an ad hominem attack which I believe violates the rules of the forum. Also, I do not lie nor will I. If you wish to have character references I can point you to Jason Yarnell of D3 Games and Farcaster if you do not believe me.


At 1.28 one the guy on the defensive as per the rules of AoO is moving/retreating more than 5' per round. And while I do not see any hits he is still suffering from AoOs.

At 1:28 the gentleman on the defensive doesn't move except forward. The person that is attacking him is moving in to attack. The defender swings a split second before the attacker. That's not an AoO as defined by the rules in D&D 3.x.

cigamnogard
12-31-2009, 12:01 PM
I didn't see a link to any video in any of your replies. I, and others that do have medieval combat experience, have stated that we did not see any attacks of opportunity because we knew how to move in combat. An attack of opportunity as defined by the rules of D&D 3.x states that when moving away from or through a threatened square enables the creature that controls the threatened square a free attack during movement.
At 1.28 one the guy on the defensive as per the rules of AoO is moving/retreating more than 5' per round. And while I do not see any hits he is still suffering from AoOs.
--- Merged from Double Post ---


It's called an ad hominem attack which I believe violates the rules of the forum. Also, I do not lie nor will I. If you wish to have character references I can point you to Jason Yarnell of D3 Games and Farcaster if you do not believe me.
But, you have. You have stated over and over you have not witnissed an AoO and there are none in any of the mock battles you have witnissed. I disagree and yes, I say that you are both mistaken and lieing to back up your point.
Furthermore, if you cannot prove your point you run to your friends. Gotcha.
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At 1:28 the gentleman on the defensive doesn't move except forward. The person that is attacking him is moving in to attack. The defender swings a split second before the attacker. That's not an AoO as defined by the rules in D&D 3.x.
In the video clip - on a site - not a link (which you have again changed to suit your point as at no time did I state it was a link) two are attacking one guy on the defense.
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At 1:33, the woman is dead from the fighting around her. There wasn't any attacks of opportunity there either.
At 1.33 she looks downcamera or downwards (whichever perspective you choose to take) and suffers the hit that "kills" her. Not sure if she was going to pull a potion or what she was going to do. She suffered an attack of opportunity because she was distracted.
--- Merged from Double Post ---



That's not entirely true.

I am not alone in my perspective.

Swordnboard
12-31-2009, 12:43 PM
Geez, you guys. Just agree to disagree. If you want your game to mimic real life you have to alter the (3.x/D&D-style) rules somewhat to get them to work. Roleplaying isn't always about imitating real life -- you have the supernatural, the arcane, the heroic, and the extraordinary going on that interfere with that. Unless you want your game to be more realistic, of course. Out-of-the-box games tend towards the fantastical and need to be modified to get that to work.

On GURPS vs D&D/d20/level-based: Point-buy systems are different from the feat-based/level-based/d20 systems. Both are fun, yet they are different and excel in different ways. Pretty much apples and oranges, really. I happen to like 3.x because I understand it best, but that's not to say that there may be something described better in a GURPS system. I've enjoyed a lot of White Wolf, which is more of a point-system. To each his own taste.

On AoOs: AoOs are hard to explain in real life. I'd argue that movement AoOs really don't happen much in real life unless you're 1v1 and expose your back or flank to your opponent -- and even then it would be related to your fighting prowess whether or not your opponent got a hit in. However, I'd also argue that casting a spell or reloading a ranged weapon at point blank range would allow an AoO in real life. Either way, like tesral mentioned, it's easy to remove the parts that you don't like because they bog down combat or don't make sense, hence the reason for Rule #1: rules are a guideline. The same goes for "exotic" weapon proficiencies or weapon properties (reach, swing, etc).

In any case, please just take a deep breath. You both make good arguments -- there's no need to make it personal.

Farcaster
12-31-2009, 03:51 PM
I'm not sure why this thread derailed into a debate on the level of realism in D&D. The first thing everyone needs to accept is that Dungeons and Dragons has never been a simulationist system and is unapologetic in this regard. Whether or not the system accurately details the finer points of period weapons and armor has nothing to do with its validity as a game, because it never really set out to be such an accurate representation. If you are a simulationist, then D&D probably isn't the right system for you. That, however, doesn't make it an inferior product. It just means that it isn't the right game for ... you.

That said, it seems the argument has become personal and people are getting their feelings hurt. Everyone needs to take a step back from this thread and just take a deep breath.

Richard Littles
12-31-2009, 04:15 PM
I would like to let everyone know that this was never about my opinion is right for everyone. As a designer, I do not get the opportunities to discuss other rules systems nor the theories behind them. I thoroughly enjoyed the discussion from all sides on the theories and rules. Might I suggest that we get this back on track by continuing on with the discussion regarding the bias of authors and exception based design vs unified rules?

Xandros
12-31-2009, 05:37 PM
I'm not sure why this thread derailed into a debate on the level of realism in D&D. The first thing everyone needs to accept is that Dungeons and Dragons has never been a simulationist system and is unapologetic in this regard. Whether or not the system accurately details the finer points of period weapons and armor has nothing to do with its validity as a game, because it never really set out to be such an accurate representation.
Agree! While I knew that in ancient myth, Medusa was the name of one Gorgon, I did not take this as D&D having it wrong. I just accepted that in the fantasy world of D&D things are different from our own myths, and in that world a group of creatures are called medusa. The same with Bastard swords and long swords, etc.

However the great thing about any rpg system is that you can change the parts you don't like. For example in my world I just renamed the creature listed as 'medusa' to gorgon. I also don't have long swords, or short swords. I have gladius, bastard sword, etc.

Otakar
01-01-2010, 08:40 AM
A common GMing mistake is thinking that the GM's job is to "beat" the players. That's not really so. He is responsible for "challenging" the players, yes, but not to do everything in his power to "end" their characters.

Is it really? Or is it just a mistake on the DM's part of making an encounter too dangerous. One of the reasons I like 4E so much is that as a DM I have a clear guideline as to the difficulty of the encounters and out tough to make them in an adventure. In my first adventure with 4E I really thought that the characters were going to loose, (see my blog) but I trusted the system, let it play out and the characters came out on top. Now I'm to the point where I can set up encounters per the guidelines and enjoy the combat so much more with the freedom to play the monsters to their fullest against the characters. This includes the suggestions in the DMG as far as monster tactics. My dire wolves attack the last character who hit them. The hobgoblin war chief willingly suffers an opportunity attack (or two) to get at the wizard before his boyz are hit with the fireball.

I was a little nervous again when the players came up against a young green dragon, but the points and challenge added up so, again, I trusted the system and they performed exquisitly and with such teamwork that when they overcame the dragon I felt soundly beaten myself.

Maybe my point is that 4E, when followed closely, makes it very easy for new players and a new DM to enjoy competitive combat against each other without having to worry about the perception of being "out to get them". The roleplay portion can be done well or poorly in any game system.

MortonStromgal
01-01-2010, 12:28 PM
Maybe my point is that 4E, when followed closely, makes it very easy for new players and a new DM to enjoy competitive combat against each other without having to worry about the perception of being "out to get them". The roleplay portion can be done well or poorly in any game system.

...but your the GM/DM per the rules (ie being judge and jury) you win, period. If you decided to go with the me vs. them mentality. That is why its not me vs. them. I'm just there to make an interesting and fun game by having challenges the PCs can handle but wont be simple.

HowwwwL
01-01-2010, 12:43 PM
Not every encounter you throw at the PCs should drain all their resources and HP to beat it. Wearing a group down, and picking at them slowly gives them the feeling of power at the beginning of the chain of encounters, and at the end, they are very very careful, and their tactics totally change in combat when they are low on HP and resources. It creates very memorable combats and makes the combats very different from each other.

Even a small pack of goblins can scare a level 4 party when they are very low on HP and resources.

I find with 4th edition D&D this is very hard to do as a DM. Every character has the ability to heal themselves, and they would need to totally run out of healing surges before a DM could employ this tactic. By the time this happens, they are already doing a full rest to load up on healing surges again. It is one of the few frustrations I had DMing 4th edition.

It sort of removes that whole feeling of impending doom from a PC perspective when they are skirting the edge of life/death...

Webhead
01-01-2010, 03:41 PM
Is it really? Or is it just a mistake on the DM's part of making an encounter too dangerous?...

It happens, in both directions actually and that can (sometimes) be part of the fun. My group has experienced encounters which were supposedly easy that could nearly have ended in TPKs as well as encounters with supposedly over-powered opponents which ended up being very one-sided in the PCs' favor. Some of those encounters turned into some of the most talked-about gaming moments in our group today. I'm not just referring to D&D here, but across many different RPGs as well.

I think the difference comes down to how the individual GM handles the situation when it occurs as well as the play-style of the particular campaign and the circumstances of the encounter.



...Maybe my point is that 4E, when followed closely, makes it very easy for new players and a new DM to enjoy competitive combat against each other without having to worry about the perception of being "out to get them". The roleplay portion can be done well or poorly in any game system.

I can see and respect that point of view. I think you're correct in that I've experienced that 4E does one thing particularly well: applying and communicating game balance. That can and does have both positive and negative connotations.

That said, I favor taking a bit more "organic" approach to encounters/combat/challenges. When it's appropriate and logical, the characters should be given tough oppenents and be required to out-strategize to survive, but there should also be times (again, when reason and logic prevail) when the PCs clearly out-match or are out-matched by their opponents. If your 1st level party goes insulting the traveling band of hill giants, don't be surprised when some of them end up broken, bruised and mangled.

I also never really cared for the idea that enemies and encounters would constantly "scale" to the PCs. Why is it that the party never encounters any trolls in the game world until they reach a high enough level to be able to effectively fight them? I'm not one to set out to kill PCs, so I would never throw them into a situation where they are forced to fight something that would wipe the floor with them, but if the villagers warn them of the dangers of entering Troll Swamp and they decide to venture off anyway, be prepared for what you will see.

This sort of flexibility of encounter details is a little harder to manage in level-based game systems due to the effect of shifting up and down the level-scale.

Otakar
01-02-2010, 10:27 AM
Why is it that the party never encounters any trolls in the game world until they reach a high enough level to be able to effectively fight them? I'm not one to set out to kill PCs, so I would never throw them into a situation where they are forced to fight something that would wipe the floor with them, but if the villagers warn them of the dangers of entering Troll Swamp and they decide to venture off anyway, be prepared for what you will see.

To me this comes back around to role-play. The 4E remake of Keep on the Boarderlands handles this well, I think. When/if the party meets up with the bugbears and gnolls, the way the encounters play-out make it clear to the party that they are over-matched and should consider a course other than combat. In our campaign I made it clear that when the characters visited the palace they could csee that there were enough guards around to encourage them to mind their manners. They can act how they want, but there woudl be definite consequenses for bad behavior. As tough as 4E characters are, you can see from my blog that when they did not fill their roles (i.e. defender act as defender, striker act as striker, etc..) they failed miserably http://www.penandpapergames.com/forums/blog.php?b=623. That encounter was scaled just right for the party. They didn't pay attention to the special abilities of their opponets nor did they act as a team and they paid the price.

Webhead
01-02-2010, 12:23 PM
To me this comes back around to role-play...

Agreed. I like to use such scenarios as springboards for some fun and varied role playing opportunities. I too will make sure to give the players a solid indication of what they are getting themselves into to allow them to check their behavior and expectations before they get themselves in too deep.


As tough as 4E characters are, you can see from my blog that when they did not fill their roles (i.e. defender act as defender, striker act as striker, etc..) they failed miserably http://www.penandpapergames.com/forums/blog.php?b=623. That encounter was scaled just right for the party. They didn't pay attention to the special abilities of their opponets nor did they act as a team and they paid the price.

Not to harp too much on things I dislike about 4E and come off as another "4E-hater", but the existence of such explicit roles and (more so) the expectation that players stick to those roles lest the party suffer for it, is one of the most discouraging things about the design of the game for me. In the past (and, to a degree, even to this day) I notoriously play characters that are "against-type". Rarely do I play "Fighty McFightenburg" when I want to play a Fighter-type. Instead, I prefer to come up with unique or quirky concepts to bring both a little originality to the character and to introduce new party dynamics and role play opportunities. The idea that, if I don't play a Fighter "by the book" in 4E, my party is going to get mopped up, puts me off. It really feels like the game is telling me "play this way or else" and that's not what I come to an RPG to experience. I come to an RPG to exercise my creative spirit.

tesral
01-02-2010, 12:52 PM
The idea that, if I don't play a Fighter "by the book" in 4E, my party is going to get mopped up, puts me off. It really feels like the game is telling me "play this way or else" and that's not what I come to an RPG to experience. I come to an RPG to exercise my creative spirit.

Forry, imagination not required, or particularly wanted. Pick your character from the drop down menu. You do get to name them however.

Sascha
01-02-2010, 01:39 PM
Pretty much what "class" is short-hand for, really. At least 4E's rather up-front about its intentions.

Soft Serve
01-02-2010, 06:31 PM
I am curious what those people who did not make the switch to 4th edition are playing now. Did you:

1) Stick with 3.5
2) Switch to Pathfinder
3) Go to a whole different game system


Made my own game(s).

Webhead
01-02-2010, 06:45 PM
Pretty much what "class" is short-hand for, really.

Yes and no. On the "yes" side, that's one of the central problems I have with "class" systems. On the "no" side, some games (including versions of D&D) use classes as more of general jumping-off point but leave the "how" and "why" and "who" up to the player during character gen.


At least 4E's rather up-front about its intentions.

More than that, 4E is self-aware and insistent about its design. It both articulates on the front end and manipulates behind the scenes (encounter design, balancing, rewards, etc.).

Sascha
01-02-2010, 07:29 PM
Yes and no. On the "yes" side, that's one of the central problems I have with "class" systems. On the "no" side, some games (including versions of D&D) use classes as more of general jumping-off point but leave the "how" and "why" and "who" up to the player during character gen.
Indeed, there are different implementations of 'class.' As a template of non-exhaustive skills and/or powers, 'class' is really handy; as a definition of role (and exclusivity of skills/powers), it's not my favorite. And it's variable between the differing editions' assumptions, absolutely. 4E (and to an extent, 3E, before it) uses the latter, which prompted the comment ;)

tesral
01-03-2010, 06:37 AM
Pretty much what "class" is short-hand for, really. At least 4E's rather up-front about its intentions.

Yes, and I don't like them. If I want to play combat miniature games I will.

templeorder
01-03-2010, 10:11 AM
I use aptitude and operate at a skill, trait and power based approach within that. Upbringings, archetype kits, backgrounds help give depth - but its not the 'class' that defines the character in the same way DnD (all editions) approaches it.

The reason i left and built my own was because the skill based alternatives using attribute seemed unbalanced in the other direction and the class based DnD approach too restrictive for what i wanted...

Otakar
01-03-2010, 10:54 AM
Forry, imagination not required, or particularly wanted. Pick your character from the drop down menu. You do get to name them however.

Tersal, I can see your and Webhead's point. What I like about 4E is that it offers a set of rules that strangers can agree upon to define their world. Shelly Manzzanoble (beauty, brains and D&D! What a combo.) has a fairly recent article http://www.wizards.com/dnd/Article.aspx?x=dnd/drcw/2009August that acknowleges even the staff at WotC see 4E as a customizable game. Webhead's concern for characters "having" to fill a particular role is valid. I would argue that the "custom" character needs only to define which role/roles he or she will fill in a certain situation.

MortonStromgal
01-03-2010, 02:05 PM
...What I like about 4E is that it offers a set of rules that strangers can agree upon to define their world...

This is not something unique to D&D 4e... All RPGs have this

Richard Littles
01-03-2010, 02:18 PM
Tersal, I can see your and Webhead's point. What I like about 4E is that it offers a set of rules that strangers can agree upon to define their world. Shelly Manzzanoble (beauty, brains and D&D! What a combo.) has a fairly recent article http://www.wizards.com/dnd/Article.aspx?x=dnd/drcw/2009August that acknowleges even the staff at WotC see 4E as a customizable game. Webhead's concern for characters "having" to fill a particular role is valid. I would argue that the "custom" character needs only to define which role/roles he or she will fill in a certain situation.

D&D isn't as customizable as you think it is. Until you can compare D&D to say GURPS or the Hero System you'll find that D&D isn't that customizable and only does one genre while GURPS/Hero System is extremely customizable and does all genres equally well. As the person above me said about the rules that strangers can agree upon all role playing games offer that. It is not something that is unique to D&D.

Dark
01-03-2010, 03:49 PM
I am curious what those people who did not make the switch to 4th edition are playing now. Did you:

1) Stick with 3.5
2) Switch to Pathfinder
3) Go to a whole different game system

So can we please :focus: rather than trying to reduce this to yet another bashing of editions because that is where it is heading.

tesral
01-03-2010, 04:04 PM
Tersal, I can see your and Webhead's point. What I like about 4E is that it offers a set of rules that strangers can agree upon to define their world. Shelly Manzzanoble (beauty, brains and D&D! What a combo.) has a fairly recent article http://www.wizards.com/dnd/Article.aspx?x=dnd/drcw/2009August that acknowledges even the staff at WotC see 4E as a customizable game.

Lizards Shill I married a girl that is all that and not a Lizards shill. And what exactly do they mean by "customizable game"? As compared to what? Chess? Is 5e going to have all the possible characters created for you? Pick a card?

And ANY RPG gives you a set of agreed on rules for the game table. I don't like their rules, and refuse to support them in word, deed or pocketbook.


Webhead's concern for characters "having" to fill a particular role is valid. I would argue that the "custom" character needs only to define which role/roles he or she will fill in a certain situation.

The very idea of the character being defined by a combat role sticks in my craw. The roles themselves are the issue. My character is not a role. I should be able to build the character I wish to build without the rules defining my character. The rules bend to the ideas.

Otakar
01-03-2010, 11:11 PM
We're all entitled to our opinions. What I'm hearing much of you say is that you feel other systems or home-made systems offer you more opportunity to explore your creativity.
What I am saying is that 4E is a standard that offers plenty of like-minded players with opportunities to role play as well as have a ton of support. I see merit in other game systems from what you all post. The problem is FINDING a game that plays with them. Having a family and full time job I just don't have the time to find another decent group much less learn another system. I selected 4E because I knew it would be easier to get a game together than any other system. I knew that if I learned it well I would always have an enjoyable game available. I love Conan stories, but why would I fork out $60+ to Mongoose for a mondo source book when I can't find players. Vampire looks interesting, but who plays it? Hero system? My NGS doesn't even carry it. I've seen GURPS in in a store I visited in another city.
My point being, I can get into a 4E game without too much difficulty. I can actually run one, since more people want to play than be the DM. The rules are not too tough, they're organized well and there's a ton of great support including a plethora of free adventures out there for those of us who are not as imaginative.

If there was no 4E I doubt if I would play 3E. I would stick with 1E. It's what I started with. I skipped 2E and 3E because I did not put gaming high on my list of priorities and the game evolved while I slept, in a manner of speaking.

I'll sign off but Tersal, could you tell me what a "Lizards Shill" is? :)

Webhead
01-03-2010, 11:37 PM
We're all entitled to our opinions...

Absolutely. And please don't think that I am trying to disuade you or anyone else from playing a game that you enjoy. That is the cornerstone of our hobby: having fun.

I just feel that the only way I can contribute value to a discussion or comparison of game systems is by putting my honest conclusions, opinions and experience out there for gamers or potential gamers to read and decide if it applies to them or not. If it gets people talking and thinking in constructive ways, then my job is done! :)


...What I am saying is that 4E is a standard that offers plenty of like-minded players with opportunities to role play as well as have a ton of support. I see merit in other game systems from what you all post. The problem is FINDING a game that plays with them. Having a family and full time job I just don't have the time to find another decent group much less learn another system. I selected 4E because I knew it would be easier to get a game together than any other system.

Agreed and quite true. D&D (of various editions), is so pervasive that it can actually be rather difficult to escape. This is both a point of encouragement and of frustration for me personally. On the positive side, it means that there is a clear and established "poster child" for the hobby which will tend to draw attention and thus encourage the industry to continue to grow. On the negative side, it means that most of the attention is directed at the "poster child" and that the rest of the hobby has a much more laborious task when it comes to self-promotion within the community. There are quite a number of gamers who have, do and will play D&D and nothing else. In that way, it becomes the sort of "self-fulfilling prophesy". D&D is made popular because so many come to play it and people, in turn, come to play it because it is so popular.

The only reason it becomes problematic for me is because there are many aspects of the "poster child" that have proven themselves not enjoyable to me and, as a very busy man myself, I am not one to waste my already limited time on something that I do not enjoy.

Again, my perspectives and opinions are only mine and should have as much or as little value as someone wishes to give them. It's just the ramblings of a non-D&D gamer in a D&D-saturated hobby (or, as the saying goes: a sane man in an insane world...if you can buy that expression ;)).

MortonStromgal
01-04-2010, 12:37 AM
Vampire looks interesting, but who plays it?
We'll there was a time when including LARP players you had more Vampires running around than D&D players... That time has passed but White-Wolf could still be argued as the #2 in the hobby.


The problem is FINDING a game that plays with them.
I think this is a valid argument. I live in a city where you can't throw a stone without hitting a gamer of some type. However if you in middle of no where South Dakota... Also you have to actually like the people you game with. That said there are certainly plenty of non D&D games out there if you look for them, providing you have an interest. One more thing is that at leased for me, my gaming has changed from 12 hour weekend sessions to 3-4 hours on a weeknight. I tried the longer sessions once a month but I just need the weekly fix even if its short.

mjk333
01-04-2010, 09:28 AM
I'd like to play 4e but haven't had a chance to yet.

But if I were going to play a more 3.x-style fantasy game and not just use 3.5, I'd go with Fantasycraft over Pathfinder.

mrken
01-04-2010, 10:05 AM
This question is not really very relevant for me as I gave up on the DnD game back when 3.5 came out. My problem was with the amount of rules avalible. As the GM I tried the less is more route. The players wanted the four foot pile of rules to bend route. In the end we parted ways and I went to the almost no rules route.

This last weekend was a rather eye opening experience for me. One of my friends who thought about joining my game was talking about how he had come to really hate the 4e game. Now he was a huge 3.5 fan and when 4e came out he jumped on the band wagon with some of my other friends. None of them are playing 4e now.

While bad mouthing 4e one of the guys who stuck by me for the last decade or so kept bringing up that the guy might like my game. Was funny how our friend kept dodging the inference. He did bring up Savage World though. So maybe the answer is SW. But not for me.

tesral
01-04-2010, 10:51 AM
My point being, I can get into a 4E game without too much difficulty.

I can also get into a Bingo game without much difficulty, order hummus without much difficulty and find a Wallmart without much difficulty.

I don't enjoy any of the above. But is is nice to know that I can not enjoy myself easily while gaming as well. Popular has never been an indication of quality. Budweiser and Microsoft have proven that beyond any doubt.

My question is why are you trying to sell Forry in a topic labeled "Those non 4th edition fans... (http://www.penandpapergames.com/forums/showthread.php?p=126187#post126187)"

Swordnboard
01-04-2010, 11:04 AM
My question is why are you trying to sell Forry in a topic labeled "Those non 4th edition fans... (http://www.penandpapergames.com/forums/showthread.php?p=126187#post126187)"

Maybe Otakar is a non-4E fan who is playing 4E anyways... just like a non-microsoft fan may use windows...

templeorder
01-04-2010, 11:04 AM
Its all a question of does the system meet you needs in telling the story. While i won't play it, i think 4E seems a lot easier to get up and running with for newer players - especially those coming from console/computer game worlds. Very smart. Its got its strengths... and its excels in particular areas. I prefer something different though. I find most people stick with what they know too - the evolution of DnD has had a large crowd until 4E when i think a lot jumped ship - but a lot of new MMO type players came on board as well. Its the Juggernaut of the industry and helps all other games in its mere presence, so for now, i'm glad its still around.

And boy, i wish i could get my group together once a week - every other week is where i am at, but its a 8 hours session, so its not so bad :)

Xandros
01-04-2010, 09:09 PM
My question is why are you trying to sell Forry in a topic labeled "Those non 4th edition fans... (http://www.penandpapergames.com/forums/showthread.php?p=126187#post126187)"
I notice this problem in most threads. If I make a post asking others who use mana points to give me some help with a mana point situation, I will get 20 responses from people who don't use mana points telling me that mana points suck. If you make a post asking what non 4th edition fans play, you will get responses from 4th edition fans telling you how great 4th edition is. If someone posted that they were diabetic and needed some sugar-free recipes from other diabetics, you would get people telling them how great sugar is and lots of sugar filled recipes.

Farcaster
01-05-2010, 12:24 AM
So can we please :focus: rather than trying to reduce this to yet another bashing of editions because that is where it is heading.

I agree. This is not a thread for debating 4th edition versus 3rd or any other edition for that matter. Take your debate to another thread if you really must have it, but frankly the arguments for or against 4th edition are rather stale now that we're a year and a half since its release.

kkriegg
01-05-2010, 12:47 AM
Just putting a 4 next to an E in any topic will cause the fur to fly.

Webhead
01-05-2010, 01:55 AM
For the discussion to have value, the "why" must be examined lest it become an insubstantial sort of "I like ice cream because ice cream is good" conversation where nothing is gained. Hence, the intentions of my remarks in this thread have not been to compare one edition against another but rather to share my reasons for not adopting 4E (or any other edition of D&D actually) so that others might read them and think about or apply them in constructive ways of their own.

Hopefully, my comments have not come off as "4E-bashing". Bashing has no intellectual value. Constructive criticism, on the other hand, is one of the greatest tools for forging a better whole.

:nerd:

Richard Littles
01-05-2010, 02:13 AM
I never got the impression that anyone was bashing any particular system. I did see a lot of discussion regarding why people didn't like D&D in general and the specifics with 4.0. I don't have any experience with 4.0, but I have plenty of experience with 1.0-3.x to know that I don't agree with the entire design philosophy behind it. I try to quantify my views using historical data and other bits of logic to explain the exact reason why I don't like it. I try to stay away from bashing and presenting my view is the only correct one.

tesral
01-05-2010, 10:16 AM
Maybe Otakar is a non-4E fan who is playing 4E anyways... just like a non-microsoft fan may use windows...

Well many people in work environments have to use windows, because their boss says to use it. However when I'm having fun, I don't do things that I consider not fun. It does stand to reason.

If is rather sad but D&D has become the windows of the gaming world. Certainly one of the most recognized RPG games, perhaps the most popular, but hardly the best.

To add to the misery it for a brief and shining moment went open source. But the lawyers clamped down and closed it again.

I will aways use a D&D similar system for fantasy. It is what I'm used to and what I feel comfortable with. However it isn't going to be the 4th edition of D&D, never ever. And for any other genre I'll find a different system.

Lucifer_Draconus
01-06-2010, 03:11 PM
Neither currently but may try Pathfinder if I can find a local group. If I had to choose between using 3.5 & 4e , I'd go 3.5 with out the evil tactical combat/movement rules. If I want to play a mini game I'll play one. Currently playing RMC & Angel/Buffy games , I prefer the RMC rules & game but the B/A game is alot of fun.I just hope Adam runs another Changeling game again after his A/B game ends.

Webhead
01-06-2010, 07:55 PM
...Currently playing RMC & Angel/Buffy games...

Forgive the momentary brainfart but, what is "RMC" short for?

Lucifer_Draconus
01-07-2010, 12:43 PM
oops Rolemaster Classic from ICE (Ironcrown Enterprises). Good game.

Webhead
01-07-2010, 10:03 PM
oops Rolemaster Classic from ICE (Ironcrown Enterprises). Good game.

I had a feeling that's what you meant but I wasn't really sure. One of my friends was a fan of Rolemaster for a long time but has since sold all of his stuff as he hadn't run/played it in years. I liked many concepts of the game (and some of the table results are hilarious) but found it a bit too much on the "heavy" side to be something I would run.

My friend also spoke fondly of Spacemaster...the RPG that you play with a calculator! ;)

tesral
01-08-2010, 12:34 AM
http://phoenixinn.iwarp.com/SS_Modeler/RPG/advmath.jpg

Lucifer_Draconus
01-08-2010, 11:16 AM
I had a feeling that's what you meant but I wasn't really sure. One of my friends was a fan of Rolemaster for a long time but has since sold all of his stuff as he hadn't run/played it in years. I liked many concepts of the game (and some of the table results are hilarious) but found it a bit too much on the "heavy" side to be something I would run.

My friend also spoke fondly of Spacemaster...the RPG that you play with a calculator! ;)

Concerning which edition of Rolemaster you were introduced to . I was Introduced to RM2 back in the day but couldn't find willing players. Mostly a lack of trying as I was really shy & anti-social. RM2 seems alot easier than RM Standard System (SS) or RM Fantasy RPG (FRPG) since those incorporated alot of the options included in the Rolemaster Companions.

With the release of Rolemaster Classic (RMC) things were reorganized & tweaked slightly. It's RM2 with a few minor changes. But they also released a rules-lite version called Rolemaster Express. It's fun stand alone game but can be upgraded by Express Addition PDFs to increase the options unless you decide to go whole hog & get RMC instead.

Spacemaster2 is cool too but doesn't seem anymore complex than RM2. It needs the classic treatment RM2 got. Spacemaster:Privateers is the "updated" Spacemaster to work with RMFRPG..now it looks complicated lol.