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rabkala
01-05-2008, 01:01 AM
No save or die effects in D&D 4e... How did I miss that? That kind of blows.

http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/toon/20071031a&authentic=true

There have always been save or die effects. How can they do this to DM's everywhere.

Mulsiphix
01-05-2008, 01:54 AM
I watched the video but I don't get it. Then again I don't know what save or die effects are. Could somebody educate me? Pretty please :)

fmitchell
01-05-2008, 02:19 AM
I watched the video but I don't get it. Then again I don't know what save or die effects are. Could somebody educate me? Pretty please :)

Essentially, certain spells or spell-like powers, often from monsters, required a "saving throw vs. death". That is, if you missed your saving throw, your character is dead, full stop. (Modulo resurrection, wish, etc.)

I don't see this as a bad thing, since I don't like staking the life of a character on a freaking dice roll, but apparently some people *like* the idea that the character they slowly raised up to 10th level could go into the dustbin through a single random event.

Mulsiphix
01-05-2008, 02:20 AM
I for one will welcome this change. Such rolls seem unfair and overkill.

Maelstrom
01-05-2008, 04:50 AM
I absolutely hate save or dies. To have a character who has fought themselves up to the higher levels go down because they rolled a 1 on a save against a Beholder's disintigrate ray is devestating in my opinion. That's not a hero's death. Maybe a supporting actor or henchmen, but not a hero.

I always play house rules like trading damage for instant death or something along those lines, anyways, so I welcome 4e's handling of it. Good riddance.

gdmcbride
01-05-2008, 07:46 AM
At the risk of creating a 'me too' post, I too will shed no tears for 'save or die'.

I want death to be meaningful. That means both eliminating quick death and easy resurrection. I will probably get part A but not part B in 4th edition.

Oh, well. It's an easy house rule.

Gary

squidyak
01-05-2008, 11:02 AM
I like save or die effects, their should be more of them. Fights are supposed to be dangerous, if you don't want to die stay on the farm.

rabkala
01-05-2008, 11:25 AM
I like save or die effects, their should be more of them. Fights are supposed to be dangerous, if you don't want to die stay on the farm.
Exactly! Thank you squidyak. I can see how many people would loathe them, especially players. I think they can be overdone and overused by a bad GM, but they add an element of danger that can't be replaced by "Oh no, you have 1 hour to counter this bad guys effect or you will get a nasty hangnail." They have always been around, but many changes to the game give players the I'm an invincible unbreakable hero feel.

Maelstrom
01-05-2008, 12:18 PM
Battles can be dangerous enough without single roll deaths. Stick a dragon done right that fully uses its abilities and intelligence and that is a possibly deadly fight, without the life of your characters staked on a single roll.

Of course, this is a matter of preference, and just as those of us that don't like Save or Dies don't use them in 3.5, you could keep them in 4.0 :)

Mulsiphix
01-05-2008, 04:14 PM
I think players should expect danger when they go out and fight something as massive as a beholder or anything that has the potential to take your life. To have 52 four hour long sessions come to a screeching halt because of a single bad roll seems wasteful to say the least. If it were up to me as a player, with save/die in effect, I would choose not to face the Beholder at all. If the DM forces us to face him I think it is a very unfair thing to have such accomplishments be wiped clean from a single roll. I agree with Maelstrom that there are many ways you can create situations where death is highly probable. Such situations should be sexy, epic, and last a certain period of time before you finally die. If a character dies I would like to think it is the choices that player made that lead to the characters death, not the one bad roll they made when they faced such evil.

Digital Arcanist
01-06-2008, 01:04 PM
There are a handful of lower-level spells as well as relatively inexpensive magic items to prevent having to roll versus an instant death effect.

As a player I have to say that I'm okay with an effect like this but I don't like it. I think it pushes players to come up with inventive strategies like spreading out and finding cover when fighting a beholder.

Malruhn
01-06-2008, 02:26 PM
I've never liked save-or-die scenarios. Dice are notoriously fickle, and I agree with the others that say it isn't fair.

I like the idea of random damage... even LOTS of random damage, because even with a failed save, there is still a chance of survival.

imtheguido
01-06-2008, 04:17 PM
But what of those times you are sitting around the table with your friends, enjoy playing the game on some serious level, but aren't so serious about it that a character death is something horrible?

I have one friend in particular, that is notorious for losing characters to "Instant Death" effects. Its an inside joke among our group, that whenever a "Save Vs. Death" roll comes up for him, he jokingly packs his character sheets away and starts heading to our D&D book shelf. Its funny, comical, and something that would be dearly missed in 4th edition if it is gone!

Save Vs. Death isn't all THAT bad, and can be lots of fun in the right situation, with the right players who don't take the game too seriously!

tesral
01-06-2008, 04:56 PM
I avoid it. If it does come up it will be a circumstance you can walk away from. No scenario will hinge on it. As oneo f my players said. "If I doed it I get a whoopin'. I doed it."

RealmsDM
01-06-2008, 07:36 PM
save or die effects have gotten softer over the years & editions of the game. I remember the old modules (pre AD&D even) had more save vs. whatever or you die. I remember playing the module Castle Amber- my PC ate something from a "phantom dinner", failed his save, yada yada yada- i rolled a new PC since my old one was doomed to join the ghostly feast for all eternity.

AD&D had crazy death traps like Tomb of Horrors, 2e had similar saves, but less save or die effects.

3e changed the save system, and still had save or die effects, but they were fair IMO.

Nixing them altogether just reaffirms my position that 4e is just a dumbed down 3e

Mulsiphix
01-06-2008, 10:56 PM
But what of those times you are sitting around the table with your friends, enjoy playing the game on some serious level, but aren't so serious about it that a character death is something horrible?

I have one friend in particular, that is notorious for losing characters to "Instant Death" effects. Its an inside joke among our group, that whenever a "Save Vs. Death" roll comes up for him, he jokingly packs his character sheets away and starts heading to our D&D book shelf. Its funny, comical, and something that would be dearly missed in 4th edition if it is gone!

Save Vs. Death isn't all THAT bad, and can be lots of fun in the right situation, with the right players who don't take the game too seriously!That is what is glorious about picking and choosing between 3.5E and 4E rules. I think the majority of people would rather do without it, especially new people just drawn to the game. I see the beauty in the decision but also see how it could discourage long time veterans. From what I've seen and read most groups aren't serious at all though.

MysticalForest
01-07-2008, 02:59 PM
Nothing says "hero" like turning a corner and dropping dead because you saw a bodak.

Save-or-die effects = bad. They need to go away and I'm quite happy to see 4E man up and get rid of that horrid mechanic.

InfoStorm
01-07-2008, 03:32 PM
While I am one of those people who lothes losing a character to safe of die effects, I cannot see them being completely removed from the game. How deadly they are is allup the the DM. When I DM, the save or die effects are often adventure climax encounters, and characters have had enough wanring of dangers before hand. I don't say, "you can't run" when they players want to, but when it time for the save or die effect to come to play, it's IN play.

Then again, I'm the type of DM who doesn't instantly hit the characters with the Sudden Empowered & Sudden Maximized Chain lightning the evil villian can produce on round one.

Summary: Save or die effects should stay, and have their place in the game. Like everything else, they shouldn't be overused.

tesral
01-07-2008, 04:05 PM
Let's see. I get rid of monsters whose sole reason for existence is to kill and eat adventurers. The ecological nitch is too small.

Anything that will outright kill you will have some manner of out. You can not mess with it. It has to hit you, something. Canon for example. A character hit with a canon ball has a save or die. Save and take damage. But a canon ball can cut a man in two. Not too many canons in adventure land however.

I don't think save of die most be eliminated, but it does need judicious use.

Mulsiphix
01-07-2008, 05:21 PM
It seems 3.X is full of rules that people rarely, if ever, use. In the end if a monster is going to kill you it should do it the old fashioned way by beating you to death. One shot kills are just a waste of a good encounter.

RealmsDM
01-07-2008, 05:57 PM
knowing that save or die effects are outthere keep the players honest if you catch my drift.... jaded veterans or RPG games will still think twice about turning the corner on that bodak, knowing full well that there is a chance, albeit very VERY slim, that they'll kick the bucket.
honestly though, by the time PCs will be facing save or die effects, they'll be a decent level where the odds they make the save are in their favor, and even if they do, raise dead is accessible.

Mulsiphix
01-07-2008, 07:02 PM
In a setting where resurrection is accessible to the players I am all for save or die effects. In universes where no such possibility exists I would be against them. As long as it is reversible, regardless of how far your party would have to go out of their way to achieve it, I think save or die is just fine (again if not over used).

rabkala
01-07-2008, 07:21 PM
In a setting where resurrection is accessible to the players I am all for save or die effects. In universes where no such possibility exists I would be against them. As long as it is reversible, regardless of how far your party would have to go out of their way to achieve it, I think save or die is just fine (again if not over used).
Have you ever considered politics? I haven't seen such wishy washy, flip flopping, fence jumping since the '88 elections. ;)

Mulsiphix
01-07-2008, 08:25 PM
I am open minded and find myself constantly changing my opinion about any given subject based on the amount of feedback and information I receive on a given subject. I am far to easy to bribe to be a Politician :p

Malruhn
01-07-2008, 09:07 PM
If a person never changes their mind, it means that they are either totally closed to new information - or they are so jaded that they don't care about changing conditions.

Ya durned flip-flopper!! :D

RealmsDM
01-07-2008, 09:36 PM
Have you ever considered politics? I haven't seen such wishy washy, flip flopping, fence jumping since the '88 elections. ;)

ZING! :D

Mulsiphix
01-07-2008, 09:38 PM
Oh behave :p

tesral
01-07-2008, 09:41 PM
It was one of his better behaviors.

Mulsiphix
01-07-2008, 09:43 PM
It was one of his better behaviors.LOL :D

RealmsDM
01-07-2008, 10:59 PM
I think I'll start a blog & name it "Save or Die", and it will focus on the changing face of dungeons & dragons in this high tech era....

MysticalForest
01-13-2008, 07:05 PM
jaded veterans or RPG games will still think twice about turning the corner on that bodakOnly if they know it's there. Besides, high-level play should not revolve around characters who are too afraid to look around corners. That's not epic.


honestly though, by the time PCs will be facing save or die effects, they'll be a decent level where the odds they make the save are in their favorUntrue, because there's always someone who suffers from an attack that's based on their weakest save, like Fighters who are mind controlled because of their weak Will, mages who're killed from their weak Fortitude saves, &c.


and even if they do, raise dead is accessible.Save-or-die puts a needless burden on the players. It's needless because the mechanic is fundamentally counterproductive to fun and inherently unheroic. Correcting for it consumes the most valuable resource to D&D gaming: time at the table. Instead of recovering from a tough battle that saved the village, the players need to spend time and their characters need to spend resources reversing a poor die roll that led to an abrupt and ignominious death.

It's a "gotcha" and gotchas are not adventurous, heroic, or fun.

Mulsiphix
01-13-2008, 08:05 PM
I never really thought about how much time it would waste having to resurrect a player that has died. Or even worse having to deviate from your current mission to take a side quest to achieve it if nobody has an item or ability that can raise a fallen player. I think it would really depend on the group. If the person died a valiant death defending their comrades then I'm sure the players would want to do whatever they could to save them. Maybe they wouldn't? Again it would depend heavily on the group and the DM.

RealmsDM
01-13-2008, 08:51 PM
save or dies add to the game, not take away from it. Some creatures are completely statted out around their one shot kill attack, and that makes it fun for the same reason horror movies are fun- they should scare you!

we can sit here all week & argue the pros & cons- save vs futility... OR DIE!!! :eek:

Mulsiphix
01-14-2008, 12:46 AM
save or dies add to the game, not take away from it. Some creatures are completely statted out around their one shot kill attack, and that makes it fun for the same reason horror movies are fun- they should scare you!I have no doubt you make great use of the save or dies in your games. I also have no doubt a great deal of DM's out there do quite the opposite. In the end it is the fashion something is used which determines if it is a pro or con to the experience. Anything in excess or improperly used can result in a complete catastrophe. For example: THE SPOON! Mild mannered eating utensil or deadly weapon in the hands of the world's children?! :eek:

RealmsDM
01-14-2008, 06:16 PM
ah ha, but is the spoon a save or die effect!?!?!?!??!

Mulsiphix
01-14-2008, 06:18 PM
Depending on the DM who is running the game, it can be ;)

The Wandering Bard
01-18-2008, 01:16 AM
I love the save or die challenge. It made encounters with creatures or mages that might be capable of such abilites even more exciting if not a little frightening. to me it made part of the experiance.

say hello to Finger of Death spell. Wow

RealmsDM
01-18-2008, 06:16 PM
I love the save or die challenge. It made encounters with creatures or mages that might be capable of such abilites even more exciting if not a little frightening. to me it made part of the experiance.

say hello to Finger of Death spell. Wow

my point exactly, although I can see the other side of the arguement, save or die has a place in the game IMO.

rabkala
01-18-2008, 07:18 PM
There are several spells that will suddenly become less powerful or altogether useless. If you suddenly have 10 rounds to stop or counteract the effects of destruction, disintegrate, slay living, etc., they are far less useful for the bad guy.

Do you think these spells will be taken down a few levels due to the loss of power?

Mulsiphix
01-18-2008, 09:56 PM
Do you think these spells will be taken down a few levels due to the loss of power?Maybe they won't have to be. WOTC could be replacing save or die with something new that isn't as final as save or die but possibly as lethal, given the situation and players luck with the dice.

RealmsDM
01-19-2008, 07:35 PM
Maybe they won't have to be. WOTC could be replacing save or die with something new that isn't as final as save or die but possibly as lethal, given the situation and players luck with the dice.

"ah ha... he's only mostly dead! There's a big difference between mostly dead and all dead" ---- Princess Bride.

:D

Vergence
01-25-2008, 02:18 PM
Maybe they won't have to be. WOTC could be replacing save or die with something new that isn't as final as save or die but possibly as lethal, given the situation and players luck with the dice.

Something to note.... instead of having save DCs and letting the player role to hit the number, in 4th Ed you'll have Defense numbers (DCs) that the targeting monster will have to overcome.. which means now the player doesn't even get to roll a die to resist the theoretical save or die effect. I'll bet that's a driving force for this change also...

MortonStromgal
01-25-2008, 02:39 PM
I like save or die effects, their should be more of them. Fights are supposed to be dangerous, if you don't want to die stay on the farm.

I would say D&D is not your game then. Theres a ton of other Fantasy RPGs out there. I've even taken the 3.X stuff and used it with MRQ rules (its an easy conversion that I can even do in my head). Any game where you get massive hit points is not designed to have save or die type fighting.

Drohem
01-25-2008, 05:27 PM
hehe...speaking of save or die spells. One of friends in our group is running an epic level campaign. I have a 23rd Fighter. We traveled to the Abyss. We got into a fight with two Pazuzu demons and 24 Vrocks. The two Pazuzu cast Finger of Death on the two mages two rounds in a row. It really made those two demons dangerous opponents and put a fire under our butts to take them down as quickly as possible. The mages made both Fortitude saves and so neither fell victim to the spell (other than the 3d6 damage each time, LOL).

rabkala
01-25-2008, 08:42 PM
Something to note.... instead of having save DCs and letting the player role to hit the number, in 4th Ed you'll have Defense numbers (DCs) that the targeting monster will have to overcome.. which means now the player doesn't even get to roll a die to resist the theoretical save or die effect. I'll bet that's a driving force for this change also...
I think, you may be on to something. It is one thing to blame bad luck and die rolls when a player feels they have their fate in their own hands. It is far worse to just have the DM say, "The Demon hits you with a finger of death, your character is dead. Ya, sucks to be you. Start rolling up a new character."
The different mechanics of the new game could greatly change how these things work. Why didn't I think of that? :p

Count Arioch
01-29-2008, 10:20 PM
4E will not closely resemble 3E, due to the fact that in 3E, save or die effects started at level 1.

The whole magic system will be alien to the previous edition.

Mulsiphix
01-30-2008, 12:22 AM
I look forward to seeing it in action. From what I've heard the system could use some streamlining.