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Thread: Save or die

  1. #1
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    Save or die

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    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...authentic=true

    There have always been save or die effects. How can they do this to DM's everywhere.
    Most men lead lives of quiet desperation.


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    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

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mulsiphix View Post
    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.
    "On two occasions I have been asked [by members of Parliament], 'Pray, Mr. Babbage, if you put into the machine wrong figures, will the right answers come out?' I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question."
    - Charles Babbage (1791 - 1871)

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    I for one will welcome this change. Such rolls seem unfair and overkill.

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    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.

    Developer for Darkage Warlord, a Pen & Paper Games exclusive Medieval Wargame.

    If you are in the DC metro area and like to trade D&D minis (1.0 or 2.0), please send me a PM!

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    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

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    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.

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    Quote Originally Posted by squidyak View Post
    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.
    Most men lead lives of quiet desperation.


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    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

    Developer for Darkage Warlord, a Pen & Paper Games exclusive Medieval Wargame.

    If you are in the DC metro area and like to trade D&D minis (1.0 or 2.0), please send me a PM!

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    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.

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    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.

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    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.

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    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!

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    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."

    Garry AKA --Phoenix-- Rising above the Flames.
    The Dean of Old School
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    Metro Detroit Linux Users Group

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    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

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