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Probably going to be DMing soon and have browsed the books slightly... But what should I read to prepare myself for DMing? I likely won't have time to read everything as I would like to, but I have a grasp of the absolute basics (Advantage, Disadvantage, Proficiency, Character Creation) and experience from Pathfinder.
Mechanically, As a DM read the bit about encounter design from the DMG that tells you that numbers matter in a fight and the action stuff from the PHB -one action (incorporating an interaction with one object) , move, maybe a basic action on your turn, one reaction on others turn.
I tend to play with more or less the same group of players I played AD&D and 3/3.5/pathfinder with. Some of them lean towards 'optimisation as a goal' because they can't help it. Choosing inefficient option X over efficient option Y just makes them unhappy in the long run - let me call them group A. Others pay no attention to which is optimal, they try sometimes but they can't keep up the interest in number maximisation- never have never will - let me call them group B.
Group B ended up in latter stages of 3e versions either falling behind in usefulness in many situations or getting group A to help design their characters. Even with a group A designed character they seemed to be reluctant to use it to maximum efficiency. Efficiency wasn't their goal.
Now for group B it doesn't really matter what system we play - they make a character that kinda works mechanically and works roleplaying wise and they are happy. They are less happy if their character gets rendered redundant mechanically and they are forced to play the group A game or be a second stringer.
We haven't played anywhere near as much 5e as we had 3e and pre system mastery has the benefit that the group B designs aren't redundant and the group A don't feel the need to discard options as they experiment.
What I am finding is that because 5e has less "system mastery" secrets and toggles the group A players don't feel the need to explore and push those boundaries. It is freeing for them in that they can largely ignore the 'optimisation push demon' because there appears to be less available. They can just relax with their character creation - not feel grumpy that they didn't follow a more efficient path. Group B is happy because there are less mechanical rules to follow to not be rendered a second stringer.
So in summary IME it hasn't attracted a different type of player but it has allowed players to focus on different elements. In my groups which are comprised of group A and group B players both are happy with this not being a big element of the game.
The wizard is probably a better fit mechanics wise and let's your group experience/explore the "arcane mystery" side of the world.
Sounds like you have the start of a PC personality.
My group found twf to cost too much in the fact it used the bonus action (it wasn't tried long enough IMO).
Sorry now going largely ot here..
Wow Raynulf that's a lot of gaming! - how often do you play?
I was thinking of
Does anyone have a good ranged feat that doesn't give the ss bonus, remove all range or cover penalties, or allow ranged attacks while in melee without penalty?
I play with 2 players I met in the early 80's and 5 from the late 80's.
I ran 2 first edition ad&d campaign. One through high school & Uni which petered out after about 12 years when the characters were about 18th level. The next lasted about 15 years but I converted in to 3e at about year and level 10 - they again got to about 18th as well. Because they were stretched over so many years it's difficult to recall how much time was spent but in high school and Uni we used to go away and play for a week at a time 2-3 times a year so that one had a lot of hours.
Both of these had multiple homebrew adventure stories - fighting invasion of humanoids, travelling to a "Egyptian myths" world, exploring a new land, recovering an ally from Hades etc or prefab adventures T1, A1-4, GDQ, L series etc
My first full 3e was a single adapted adventure path(night below). I altered it to go 1-20 and it took about 5-6 years, maybe 100-120 "evening sessions" of 3-4 hours.
After that I started running paizo adventure paths - RotRL, CotCT & the drow/elf one. Each finished at about 13-16th level but took about 6 "full weekend" sessions (fri-sun night). We got used to going up a couple of levels each weekend.
I think the adventure path - single story style campaign encourages faster progression.
We slowly got used to the faster progression speed of 3e and yes the consequence was:
But I do think part of the reason was this was what we got used to. Initially when we played we didn't advance quickly because it seemed daft to do so (but we didn't give xp for gold in ad&d either). Then we just accepted it. Now we are working to get back a bit of the old style.
I think it's largely player choice - but 5e makes it easier to choose the slower path because just as you are threatened by low level foes at high level - you can threaten high level foes at low level. The tiers aren't so rigid.
I must admit to slow it down I have also decided to run two parties (same players) in the same campaign this time partly so the players go slowly enough.
We now play 3 weekends a year. In 3e we expected to go up 2-3 levels in a weekend. In our latest 5e weekend 2 out of 7 characters in one of the two groups went up a level everyone else stayed the same.
It felt like in 3e you played to level up and btw there was a story and an adventure. In 5e it feels a bit like you play for the story/adventure and btw you get stronger over time.
Sorry - I seem to have gone quite off topic.
I don't mind the stunning fist but I've houseruled against allowing the paladin to double smite dice after electing to smite after rolling a crit.My rule is that if you nominate before rolling and you hit you have to smite, if you crit it's double dice. If you miss you don't lose the smite.
If you choose to smite after hitting that's fine too but the smite dice don't double if the hit happened to be a crit.
You're a bit unusual I suspect. The improvement through getting stuff, skills or stats or level raising is a big deal in RPGs and crpgs IME.
I once had a player complain that he didn't get any "interesting" magic items. When I asked what he meant he said "like a +4 shield".
Players they love their bigger numbers, and having a stat that goes to 22 is like having an amplifier that goes to 11.
Steve Geddes wrote:
Bite your tongue.
Move along players, nothing to see here.
Whether it's an illusion or not it's a big deal for the players. Huge.
My thought process is that getting +2 in 5e is quite a big deal but probably no bigger than getting +1 in 3.5 and 5e is all about "meaningful bonuses" so I would lean towards +2.
But I would more likely go with "if it was meant to be an awesome bonus make it awesome".
If you are playing converted ad&d adventure style where getting those books was meant to be a thing of total awesome (cos you couldn't train up stats) I would make the bonus +2 AND allow the effected stat to be trained to 22.
My comment about being tough to move on from greyhawk was more that it's a pretty classic and iconic world. Those that have got deeply into it seem to struggle to move on to something else, despite the lack of recent support. I find I am able to play campaigns set in other worlds but I keep coming back to greyhawk.
I suspect Lorathorn meant failed to fund (not fun)
Wotc 5e has been just Forgotten Realms, although the Ravenloft they are releasing soon is to be set on a demiplane located in the "shadowlands" (plane of shadow).
I am running my latest campaign in a non-canon greyhawk Amedio Jungle region using Cauldron as the central plot line.
I'm afraid to say that if you are a greyhawk fan you'll find it tough to move on.
Yeah, I don't really understand why it's not 1 dice for medium, 2 dice for large, 3 dice for huge and 4 dice for gargantuan. The humanoids/giants seem to follow this pattern and its seems like an easy thing to follow. I suspect I will be changing it (when my players meet a huge dragon)
Norman Osborne wrote:
I don't understand the topic question. It assumes there is a time I'm NOT going through my 1st and 2nd edition (as well as original and Basic D&D) stuff. That is a faulty assumption.
Agreed. I am and I always have.
The first 3e campaign I ran was a conversion of the 2e adventure Night Below.
My current 5e campaign uses cauldron but includes a conversion of the basic adventure Nights Dark Terror (B10) and will have Dwellers in the Forbidden City (I1).
With respect to 1e tomb of horrors it suggests if you have more than 5 or 6 players they only play one character each. That's right if you play with a group of 4 you are expected to each play two characters.
Apparently when it was first run in a 1975 tournament it was run 8 times over the weekend each with 15 players per game. They ranged from 4th to about 12th level (plenty of chance for trial and error as your party slowly died). I think people were able to play more than once. The two Friday night groups didn't get very far and the winner was in a Sunday group. IMO fascinating history of the game and miles away from the way it is now.( if interested read Increments comments in the ENworld thread "is tomb of horrors the worst dungeon of all time?" (Hint:it's not))
It seemed more player solving problems than character solving problems back then. My only issue is that after you've been playing a couple of dozen years in this style all your characters have a similar set of tactics when dealing with doors, corridors, chests etc. that's why I prefer the "my character searches the chest for traps (roll search skill)" rather than "my second level wizard who has never been in a dungeon in her life uses door opening method number 5 on this door because it's a double iron door in a decorated arch"
imo they were so concerned with making it something you don't worry about they didn't even try with the encumbrance rules. An average gnome (strength 10) can carry 3 other gnomes (40 pounds each) while fully equipped in light armour and weaponsand be just as nimble as if it didn't have his whole family literally on his back.
I find in game play carrying capacity and encumbrance inevitably becomes important and interesting for tension in a scene, but only at certain times.
- dragging a friend to safety
Currently one way a party climbs a rope is everyone just tie on to the guy with athletics and they shimmy up the rope with a bunch of PC's hanging off them - like fezzik up the cliffs of insanity.
(Except of course ropes can't hold much weight - they "burst" with a dc17 strength check so they probably can't even hold the weight of one normal unencumbered person!)
I would like some of these smaller details to have been kept simple but have had a little more thought.
I have done the "level up when I say so everyone the same level" it's a fine way to go. Especially in 3e because being even 1 level different can matter. In 5e you can play at different levels in the same group and that gives an interesting dynamic without making it suck for the lower level character IMO.
With regards to XP some people just want to play a character that is of similar level to everyone else & don't want to be penalised for having to miss a session, others want to play a character who "earns" every XP. Who am I to argue with either option.
Currently my campaign consists of running two groups of PC's (same players) and I give out XP to those who are there when the encounter happens. However I also allow the players if they have missed a bit to increase their XP to the next lowest XP in the group. I figure I am creating adventures for their fun and I don't need to adjudicate this aspect of the game - it's up to them. Let them decide what's fun for them. I'm even thinking of letting those that don't care about recording XP just link their level up to the lowest XP in the group.
(my players are all gaming veterans with 30+ years experience but I don't think this would matter)
I was nodding along while reading your first paragraph, then I saw the next two.
Do not even begin to think about going there. Just no.
It's difficult to compare editions like that.
An AD&D 1e magic user that goes from level 10 to level 11 has less hit points than a 5e one but gets the following benefits to their spell casting (I'm ignoring any save or to hit increases )
- there is other stuff as well but you get my point.
A 5e wizard gets to learn one new spell and gets a single 6th level spell. All their magic missile do 3dice and their fireball stay at 8dice. The big thing they get is their firebolt goes from 2d10 to 3d10.
At super high level(15+) a AD&D spellcaster character is much more powerful than a high level 5e one. But a low level (4-) 5e one is more powerful than a 1e one.
1-20 5e is kinda like levels 4-16 AD&D. If I was converting a level 18 AD&D wizard to 5e I would make it a level 20 spellcaster with a couple of DMG boons. (Btw I think this is why in 3e greyhawk products the previously 10th level NPC is now 15th level - it is a better representation of their personal power compared to the power of the regular warrior)
I tried to do a "how many orcs do you need to kill to get to level 15 in each edition" but iirc trolls in AD&D netted you as much exp as about 40 orcs and hill Giants got you as much as about 120 so it ended up being an interesting but not illuminating exercise. 40 orcs in 5e means the death of just about any character if they can't out run them.
But back to the point about running the slow game. I do like the relative emphasis of 5e (rapid advancement to level 3, slow a lot between 5 and 10, a bit of a speed up at 11-13 then a gentle consistent rate 14-20. I have run three quick 3e adventure paths in the last 5-6 years and they get characters to 14th level but the characters seem to lack depth. Previously my first exposure to 3e was running a 6 year 1-20 level campaign and before that I ran AD&D - a couple of 15 year 1-18 level campaigns (not consecutively) so I come from a slow advance background.
For mine I'm going to keep the exp table in 5e (for the relative level advancement) I think as my campaign gets to mid levels (it's level 3-4 at the moment) the 0.4 multiplier looks like it will not work as well. I suspect I will simply redo the exp table for each CR.
I multiply stated XP awards by 0.4. I keep the players handbook stuff the same.
What do you do?
Ps I like the idea of giving cr X hp. Have to look more closely at that.
I also find the higher cr monsters tend to give out more XP than their actual threat level. Especially once you get to CR 4 or higher.
Steve Geddes wrote:
It's clear. I had the same puzzle. We eventually concluded it was ambiguous and went with spell level (ie cure wounds is always +2). We figured they're pretty good about explicitly using 'spell slot' when that's what they mean.
1. A first level spell would be +3 (level +2), and2. I have the opposite interpretation. Note The same wording is used in the dispel magic spell.
Read the paragraph on page 201 about casting spells at a higher level it seems that if you use a 3rd level spell to cast cure wounds you have just cast a 3rd level spell.
DM Jeff wrote:
I use masterwork weapons in 5e. I decided if one damage die of the weapon rolls a 1, consider it a 2 instead. That's it.
This is what I am planning as well.
I am thinking of also having it double the short range for thrown weapons.
A possible issue with this is that in 3.x all magic weapons were masterwork (the logic being as I understand it that most magic weapons would have been crafted to masterwork level before being enchanted) and the magic bonus overwrote the masterwork bonus. Do you then in 5e say that all magic weapons have the masterwork bonus?
Do you have masterwork armour in 5e?
There's also lots of free stuff for 4th including downloadable pre-gen characters, classes, adventures, and simply buying 1 month of DDI gets you the ENTIRE system of rules, classes, races, monsters, feats, powers/spells, and adventures. You could download all the Dungeon adventures and the Scales of War AP for 1 lump price.
Is this right? I have never used DDI or 4e but I would be interested in downloading the online dungeons and adventures to read them and possibly mine them.
So, assuming I'm a noob at this stuff what would I do and what would I be able to get ?
Why are you quitting playing pathfinder?
I quit because it was too complex at levels 7+ and just kept getting more complex as it went up, over rewarded game mechanic mastery and took too long to design and play combats.
I initially switched to Savage Worlds a few years ago as a simpler system (I still like it) and now play 5e. It doesn't have any of the problems I mentioned above.
I think this is the way to look at treasure once you get past about 5th level. Up until then you are buying armour, healing potions and the like. Beyond that point those things become easy to obtain and cash becomes a narrative reward.
This means you have to allow it to be used in the narrative. Give the party the chance to gain some information, reputation, help out a friend, live well etc if they have cash.
That's really interesting that 11th level 5e = 14th level pathfinder. Partly because I would have said 14th level pathfinder = 16th level 3/3.5e. Maybe I could actually run Rappan Athuk to the end.
I am running pre 5e adventures converted to 5e as well (just started). I would imagine that the treasure has been filleted a bit to fit with the 5e approach to magic.
What magic items do you have at 11th?
I have multiplied the amount of exp earned for defeating a monster by 0.4 which means you have to defeat 2.5 times as many creatures to level up. I do give some quest exp
Other house rules:
Rules 1-3 above and the slow exp is partially to stretch out the time taken in game.
Most crucial thing to remember is that 5e is a different game.
I think a major point of 5e limiting feats and making them have greater effect was to follow the principal of giving characters less stuff but making it bigger so a feat is special. It would not be unusual for characters will reach 12th level before even taking a feat. I think giving them all these extra feats works against that intention.
The reason the AC is what it is has to do with bounded accuracy, if you in essence just give all armour wearers +1 AC you simply increase the defence of all characters except those that don't wear armour. The biggest difference this will make is to the heavy armour, shield using defence based fighter who will gain a fair bit from it, and monks, wizards etc who will lose. The reason they lowered them was because 5e is a different game.
I considered flanking but favoured ditching the +2 bonuses for simplicity. With the reduced attacks of opportunity it's easy to flank. My players appreciated not having to gang up in the right squares to get a bonus.
I allowed a max of 2 inspirations - no one ever got there. I still don't have a handle on giving them out.
As for the stat bonuses an extra 1 point won't make a difference - except to humans I guess. I made my players roll up their characters (stats in order, no rearrange) because I wanted that old school feel. Initially they were grumpy about but after about 30 hours of play and 1 death (new character rolled up) they like it.
My anecdotal experience is the same as Tormsskull's.
IMO The hydrophobia sufferer who crosses the water to get a more powerful item, then justifies it as "character development" is wrapping their optimisation in roleplaying fluff (that is not hard to see through), rather than actually roleplaying.
Often optimisation and roleplaying can walk along the same path. The relevant question is what do you do when optimisation says go left and roleplaying say ago right? If you pay no heed to following the optimisation path this is an easy decision.
Where did your campaign get up to?
Nicolas Logue wrote:
High level thread necromancy required....
Did this sequel ever happen? Did it get converted into something else?
I am looking for monk/monastery adventures
Jzadirune is a real grind because at low level you have little resilience, I don't plan to let the players go I to it until they are 2nd or maybe 3rd level. Big dungeons at low level are just repetitive as progress is so slow.
But for that encounter as you described the issue was more the DM than the dungeon.
Meh pick and choose different recipes but can't as easily learn about history or how to animal handle.
My primary suggestion would be to Play a bard, especially a knowledge bard Or maybe a rogue, a knowledge cleric or a champion fighter. They all get a bit of skill boost along the way. Multiclass into rogue, ranger or bard if you want to skill up later on.
IMO If you want to play a skills generalist, they exist. You just can't be a skills generalist and a class that doesn't focus on skills. This is a feature of the game, not a bug. Skill granularity leads more toward skill min maxing (ie focussing on the more commonly used and in game valuable skills than the more esoteric skills) than generalisation.
The house rule I would offer as GM would be to let you freeze a proficiency at 5th and add the bonuses to another skill if that's what you wanted (I.e. when you go up to 5th you don't go up in it but you can add it to something else).
One way of looking at the system in a 3e way is that say you get 5 skills at +2 at first level, they go up to +3 at 5th so that means you get 10 points to distribute at 1st level (maximum bonus +2) and another 5 skill points to distribute at 5th, 9th, 13th and 17th. If your class picks up an extra proficiency you get extra points. You may need to come up with some sort of class skill mechanism ( like a lower max for non class skills etc). My view is this would likely lead to the 3e min,max on skills - with perception athletics and acrobatics being maxed for the wizard.
It's hard to put a finger on it.
For me I always felt that forgotten realms was similar in its generic fantasy trope but is trying too hard to be "better than Greyhawk". Like everything Greyhawk has it tries to have one, but better. That doesn't work.
I am just about to start a 5e campaign. I will return to Greyhawk after 6 years in Golarion. Shackled City with a bucketload of extras to make it a sandbox with an adventure path spine. I am setting it around the time of the 3e era gazetteer and am looking forward to the influence of the battle between the Scarlet Brotherhood and the Sea Princes spilling over into Cauldron.
Oh, and yes I would love some 5e greyhawk ( any non massive adventure path 5e really - WOTC doesn't make small adventures I can fit into my Greyhawk)
I would think that Triel is the most charismatic of the three leaders and with her gone the alley bashers and hill folk would pull out. Really once their hidden lair has been found they best leg it.
Iirc the reason for stealing the wands was to ransom them back for money. Once they are found they should go and hide again. This probably means the party will fail to recover enough wands.
This is a disappointing way for the adventure to end so perhaps Tarkilar could stay in the ruins and some of the dead could be brought back to assist him? Skaven can live to fight another day.
I read a more interesting reason for the bad guys wanting the wands which was along the lines that they were using them to drain the water from the ruins to discover something within the lake. I can't recall exactly what it was down there. But if you follow that motivation they might have a reason to stay.
Yes. I modified the "Cauldron and Environs" map to reflect plantation locations. It's not very complicated but it helped me describe what the players saw as they took various trips outside the city. If you have an email address, I'll send it to you for use however you see fit.
Thanks Greystaff. It'sThomashobday at hotmail dot com
I'm not familiar enough with Greyhawk to give recommendations for that setting. Generically you could have them as the routes to the various mines and plantations that are mentioned in the various installments but never specifically placed on the maps.
Did you use them when you ran it?
I suspect there is no canon for this. I am looking for ideas for expanding the area. I am thinking of having Port Shaw from Razor Coast set up some distance to the South so the Hollowsky road could go there.
Yeah, but the guardians if the galaxy movie wasn't premised on a big comic book following to sell tickets was it? IMO It was just a story turned into a film - using a bit of goodwill from Marvel, from space films etc
I would have thought getting the D&D brand a bit of a spit & polish would be all that Hasbro would need ( I certainly wouldn't think the rpg was anymore than a small plank in their intellectual property plan) then they could make a Drizzt movie riffing off the books, the recent warm fuzziness toward the game ( including cprg's , board games etc ) and 'magic/fantasy' films like LOTR, hobbit, harry potter. They could then see if they have got the Marvel style movie franchise they dream of.
( of course this means they need some sort of control of the D&D film licence - what happened to that?)