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RPG Superstar 2015

Elf revealed, My concerns


D&D 4th Edition (and Beyond)

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Okay,m here comes the rant. Everyone who wants to thinik puppy-dog thoughts about 4e are requested to respond to this rant IN ANOTHER THREAD.

The elf, ala 4e, as seen on http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/dramp/20071221&authentic=true& amp;pf=true

So what's so terrifying about this?

All bonuses. There are no drawbacks to being an elf. No penalties, no reductions. Just good stuff. If this has been done at the race level, it has likely been done everywhere. These decisions are largely meaningless, because your no worse than anyone else, you're just better in some places. (If you don't understand my problem here, think The Incredibles. If everyone is special, then no one is. Part of the point of a race is to be better at some things AND WORSE AT OTHERS. That's one reaosn to play a human -- no real weakness. But now, you're just better at stuff as an elf, with no drawback.)

Plus, the racial power worries me. It's very sparese, and very mechanical. I can't see it ever feeling like anything but a game mechanic, not something that models part of a realistic and fantastical world.

Play an elf if section is Combat/Rules Only. There is no social reason to play an elf. There are three scant paragraphs about their background, all tied to a specific setting, but no rules to support it. They are easily moved to laughter, but that has no game mechanical effect,. Because apparently game mechanics are for stabbing things.

So, elves are tall now. All previous art and figures that made them short, as they have been in every other edition of DND ever, is invalid. And they are always creatures of the woods. Your savvy, city-wize, educated empire of elves with ships and trade routes and large urabn areas? Gone.

Movement in squares. We are no longer trsuted to figure out that 35 feet is 7 squares. This is certainly indiciative of a combat-scene only, buy our minatures mentality, and thus bodes well for ROLE-playing.

I continue to feat 4e is going to focus on combat, and not care about social settings. If there are social rules, they'll work like some form of combat. It's all becoming a very complex miniatures game

AND

Things are being changed for the sake of changing them. They want to make it all different, so we have to buy it to get the newest version. Of elves.

Of ELVES?

Pfah. I'll play 4e for much the same reasons I play Warhammer FRP – because it's fun to play somethign different from time to time. But it is nbot DND to me, and I'm not switching.

Dark Archive

I don't think any of the races will have drawbacks. They don't even have negative ability score modifiers. Who needs drawbacks when you just want to roxxor?

Dark Archive

Dungeon Grrrl wrote:
requested to respond to this rant IN ANOTHER THREAD.

Heh.

Priceless.


Dungeon Grrl:

My understanding of 4th edition is that one of the designer goals is to remove aspects which are deemed not fun. The lack of racial penalties/drawbacks is one of them and I would expect much more. Giving all classes a healing ability is another example, going up 30 levels in approx. 1 year of game play is another. Changing the stats around so that you don't actually get a negative, I believe that +3 was the average stat now rather than +0. Anyway, these are all examples of things that have been entered into 4th edition as I understand them.

I don't agree with this line of thinking at all, in any of the above examples, and certainly not in racial abilities. Your correct in your view so far as I'm concerned. If everything comes for free, it is meaningless and no one is special. I think we'll see a lot of this in combat as well. Classes more equal on terms of hitting opponents, the difference will be in the bells and whistles attached to each class rather than the core combat issues.

For those who like to play that way....great. Enjoy! For those that don't care for having everything handed to them on a silver platter....stick with what your playing now, whether it is 1st, 2nd, 3rd, or 3.5.

This whole 4th edition thing reminds me of a lot like basic and advanced D&D. Right now, we play advanced....next summer the basic version comes out.

President, Jon Brazer Enterprises

To be honest, I saw this coming the moment I heard that the fighters get "spells" and wizards never run out of spells. Anything less would have been a disappointment. Short of the long: This isn't D&D; this is Exalted d20. They're not pushing the fun of creating the character and accompishing a great task against long odds. They're pushing the "fun" of winning, of beating the next monster. The "fun" is in the wholesale slaughter of dumb monsters (of which the gnome is now apart of, I guess gnome's aren't slaughter happy enough).

Dark Archive

Goodposts all.

I think the 4E designers would like you to think that you've already been playing Basic and 4E will be the Advanced D&D. Im mean afterall 3.5 seems to have been a veiled-beta test for 4E all along anyways.

I am for some racial drawbacks myself. However I'm a roleplayer not a wargamer by default. Flaws are what make you stand out not special abilities/stats. As an extreme example: Superman may have every power in the book but his vulnerability is all his own and thats what makes him different IMO.

President, Jon Brazer Enterprises

EileenProphetofIstus wrote:
My understanding of 4th edition is that one of the designer goals is to remove aspects which are deemed not fun. The lack of racial penalties/drawbacks is one of them

I've never considered a racial penalty "unfun." Infact I've always thought of it like chess where the Rooke moved straight vs the Bishop moved diagonal. If the game consisted of all queens, that would quickly become unfun.

Dark Archive

DMcCoy1693 wrote:
To be honest, I saw this coming the moment I heard that the fighters get "spells" and wizards never run out of spells. Anything less would have been a disappointment. Short of the long: This isn't D&D; this is Exalted d20. They're not pushing the fun of creating the character and accompishing a great task against long odds. They're pushing the "fun" of winning, of beating the next monster. The "fun" is in the wholesale slaughter of dumb monsters (of which the gnome is now apart of, I guess gnome's aren't slaughter happy enough).

I'm seeing the comparisons to Exalted more and more. This can't be good. D&D should be the cutting edge RPG not borrowing from other games. As to gnomes, in Living Greyhawk I have heard musings for years about all the evil gnomes in their mods. I guess WotC takes this to heart. ;)

Dark Archive

DMcCoy1693 wrote:
I've never considered a racial penalty "unfun." Infact I've always thought of it like chess where the Rooke moved straight vs the Bishop moved diagonal. If the game consisted of all queens, that would quickly become unfun.

Good analogy! :)


*Starts casting some serious doubts about 4ed and starts looking for deals on 3ed books.*

I don't have so much of a problem by getting rid of negative modifiers as I am that they don't even try to explain the modifiers. It's ..."Sweet, +2 Dex and +2 Wis! This race is made for rangers, rogues, or clerics!"...when it should be "Elves possess keen eyesight and are much more lithe than their human counterparts, giving them a advantage to skirmishing tactics. Due to their overall care-free lifestyle, they pursue wisdom in all things, leading to a higher connection with nature."

Okay, the second one was pretty bad too, but it's an attempt.

President, Jon Brazer Enterprises

mortellan wrote:
Superman may have every power in the book but his vulnerability is all his own and thats what makes him different IMO.

The problem with Superman is that he is untouchable unless you break out the Kryptonite. BORING!!! Batman is consistantly DC's top seller, which is most interesting considering he doesn't have any superpowers.

President, Jon Brazer Enterprises

mortellan wrote:
Good analogy! :)

Thank you.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

This post reminds me of another at the WotC Messageboard. Specifically, some people are complaining about death and how it destroys the game. I.e., people shouldn't die. And if they do, then Resurrection needs to be fixed ... because it's too demanding on the party.

*sigh*

President, Jon Brazer Enterprises

mortellan wrote:
I'm seeing the comparisons to Exalted more and more. This can't be good.

To be fair to Exalted, WW pushes the role playing aspect of the game as well as doesn't sell minis for it (and consequently doesn't have the immeasurably more tactical options that 4E has).

President, Jon Brazer Enterprises

Traken wrote:
*Starts casting some serious doubts about 4ed and starts looking for deals on 3ed books.*

I bought PHB II like 2 hours ago for $10, and earier this week I got Kingdoms of Kalamar CS for $1.


DMcCoy1693 wrote:
Traken wrote:
*Starts casting some serious doubts about 4ed and starts looking for deals on 3ed books.*
I bought PHB II like 2 hours ago for $10, and earier this week I got Kingdoms of Kalamar CS for $1.

Is this at your FLGS or online?

President, Jon Brazer Enterprises

Traken wrote:
Is this at your FLGS or online?

Ebay

EDIT: I will note that the one thing I can NEVER find on Ebay is Paizo Products (save old dungeon and dragon mags), I am guessing no one wants to part with them.


DMcCoy1693 wrote:
mortellan wrote:
Superman may have every power in the book but his vulnerability is all his own and thats what makes him different IMO.
The problem with Superman is that he is untouchable unless you break out the Kryptonite. BORING!!! Batman is consistantly DC's top seller, which is most interesting considering he doesn't have any superpowers.

You've nailed it- Superman flying into a burning building to save orphans isn't heroic- he's just not acting like an a$$h0le and blithely flying on.

True heroics need some sense of risk, of something to lose, not just an endless power trip- that gets old fast.


DMcCoy:

I think you misunderstood me, perhaps I didn't write my post well. When I indicated that racial penalties are not fun (along with everything else) I was speaking from what appears to be the view of WOTC and their intended audience, not mine. I appreciate you reading the post and I apologize if you somehow misinterpreted my meaning. I personally am human and suffer from a Str. penalty as well as penalties on my attack rolls as a result of flaws. And I have fun. Roleplaying is the key to getting the most out of a character and having some drawbacks only makes the game more interesting.

Star Voter 2013

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Dungeon Grrrl wrote:
All bonuses. There are no drawbacks to being an elf. No penalties, no reductions. Just good stuff. If this has been done at the race level, it has likely been done everywhere. These decisions are largely meaningless, because your no worse than anyone else, you're just better in some places. (If you don't understand my problem here, think The Incredibles. If everyone is special, then no one is. Part of the point of a race is to be better at some things AND WORSE AT OTHERS. That's one reaosn to play a human -- no real weakness. But now, you're just better at stuff as an elf, with no drawback.)

You've hit on exactly my concerns. When I create characters, I like them to have a low score or two. It makes for far more interesting characters when they're good at some things and not good at some other things. When everything's high, it eventually leads to boredom because everything's the same. What used to be high becomes average and then people just want things even higher.

Dungeon Grrrl wrote:
Plus, the racial power worries me. It's very sparese, and very mechanical. I can't see it ever feeling like anything but a game mechanic, not something that models part of a realistic and fantastical world.

Agreed here, too. There's no flavour to this ability. There's a place for mechanics that are just straight mechanics, but not in something that's supposed to be a "racial power". When a character uses this ability, what do the characters in the game see? Absolutely nothing. It's as if the character never used the power and thus doesn't have the power.

The rest of what you mention doesn't bother me as much. Nonetheless, this elf preview has just added to my desire to NOT get 4e.


Dungeon Grrrl wrote:
All bonuses. There are no drawbacks to being an elf. No penalties, no reductions. Just good stuff.

You win the prize. Very insightful.

I've been saying over the last few weeks, there are two kinds of D&D players: those who look at the rules and say, "Cool! Now I can create a character like X!" and those who look at them and say, "What? Why can't I create a character like X?"

For some people, games, even RPGs, are inherently about boundaries and limitations. They find it more challenging and in fact more fun to work creatively within a context that involves trade-offs and strategic rather than just tactical thinking. Others, however, chafe under these strictures and see them as impediments to their ability to work creatively.

D&D, true to its wargames roots, had always been about the former until now. "Balance" meant not that all things were equally good but that every bonus or advantage was met with a penalty or disadvantage. Part of how you "won" D&D was finding ways for your character to succeed in spite of his drawbacks or perhaps even to make those drawbacks work for him -- the very essence of heroism, I'd say!

But I get the impression this perspective on the game is a minority one; it's an "un-fun" one. So be it. I don't think the older way of playing is necessarily better but it's definitely different. To deny that 4E is the start of a new game, from top to bottom, is to define D&D so broadly that almost any kind of fantasy RPG could be D&D. For me, D&D has always been as much about its limitations and boundaries as it has been about anything else. Those things help define D&D; remove them and I'm not sure what you have left.


Yeah, in the Slavicsek Perkins GenCon presentation (it's on youtube, if you wanna get depressed)
the point seemed to be that you won't have limitations.
Looks to me that they're abandoning internal game world logic in the interest of removing character limitations (which = FUN).
They specifically mention a party having to stop for the day or regroup because the cleric is out of healing spells, as if it's bad that your characters sometimes run out of ammo.

I also like how they say,"It's new! It's the greatest thing ever! Evolution!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" And then they say,"It's the same game!!!!!!!!!!! It's the same game!!!!"


If it really is the same game then we don't need to buy it because we already have it. It is nice that WOTC clarified this for us. Hopefully it will have some people some money. Giggle....


If there are no limitations, then the new limitation will be the size of the bonus. I can hear the whines now.

"I only got +3 to my attack roll with my Platinum Mink Claw Action of Coolness. How come he gets +6 with his Royal Blue Conniving Face Plant???!!! WTF DM dude?"

Dark Archive Bella Sara Charter Superscriber

Dungeon Grrrl wrote:

Movement in squares. We are no longer trsuted to figure out that 35 feet is 7 squares. This is certainly indiciative of a combat-scene only, buy our minatures mentality, and thus bodes well for ROLE-playing.

To be fair, measuring movement in feet is a relatively new innovation in D&D. Prior editions used inches just like a war game. I'm not a huge fan of squares or inches, but I can understand the point of not wanting to convert units. Strength is measured by an abstract number - you don't record the number of pounds your character can lift and then divide by 50 to get your bonus to hit and damage - and that works just fine.

President, Jon Brazer Enterprises

EileenProphetofIstus wrote:
I think you misunderstood me, perhaps I didn't write my post well. When I indicated that racial penalties are not fun (along with everything else) I was speaking from what appears to be the view of WOTC and their intended audience, not mine.

That's what I thought. I was merely stating that I agree with you but for different reasons and why I feel that the move for all bonuses is a mistake.

President, Jon Brazer Enterprises

Sebastian wrote:
To be fair, measuring movement in feet is a relatively new innovation in D&D. Prior editions used inches just like a war game. I'm not a huge fan of squares or inches, but I can understand the point of not wanting to convert units.

The only POSSIBLE plus to having movement not listed as feet and now listed in squares is for non-Americans. I'm sure the rest of the world doesn't enjoy having to use feet. Now the core book can state, "A square is 5 ft x 5 ft or 1.5 meters x 1.5 meters, but to keep things consistant, all distances will be listed in squares."


Sebastian wrote:
To be fair, measuring movement in feet is a relatively new innovation in D&D.

Incorrect. I don't have my Holmes Basic Set handy but I can say with certainty that the Moldvay/Cook editions (published in late 1980 but with a copyright date of January 1981), movement was already in feet.


WoW has 6 feet elves, Paizo has 6 feet elves - now D&D has them, so what? They are just trying to be not the lamest RPG anymore. Elves must be cool again. ;-)


maliszew wrote:
Sebastian wrote:
To be fair, measuring movement in feet is a relatively new innovation in D&D.
Incorrect. I don't have my Holmes Basic Set handy but I can say with certainty that the Moldvay/Cook editions (published in late 1980 but with a copyright date of January 1981), movement was already in feet.

You sir, are a gamer, scholar and gentleman.

It looks like we are the minority. And at this point, paizo seems to be our only hope of support.

Now, i can game without support. I and my crew have invented more monsters, magic items, and prestige classes than we have taken from outside sources. And we've made a lot of our own feats and spells, though not to the same degree. But outside sources can be big timesavers when something "close" is good enough, and is often inspiration for new ideas or ways of doing things. Heck, I play in a game where the only magic is psionics (with everything renamed and one one element allowed per caster), incarnum and stuff from the Tome of Magic. It has a very different feel, and it's fun we wouldn't have come up with on our own, even if we've houseruled a lot of how things work.

But major, well-written, professional support is hugely useful. I don't know where we would be without the Advanced gamemaster's Guide or Midnight or Arcana Evolved, and those kinds of things aren't going to come out for 3.5 anymore unless a majhor company holds onto that game.

Maybe I need to start buying 3e stuff I don't have just to create a backlog..

And it looks like pazio may do at least one more 3.5 Pathfinder, so that's good.

And I can borrow from other games. But it looks like the tone of 4e is going to be so radically off from 3.5, or much earlier DnD that I'll be better off borrowing directly from otis Albert Cline or De Camp or Lin Carter.

Dark Archive

I play a lot of Savage Worlds. In that system, movement, spell info, weapon ranges, etc, are given in inches making it more geared to the mat.

I admit, it is kind of irritating at times (especially when you consider I'm not much of a battlemat guy) but it isn't overly horrible. It's not enough to make me not play Savage Worlds.

Still. I'd prefer feet.

Scarab Sages Star Voter 2013

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Pawns, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
DMcCoy1693 wrote:
Sebastian wrote:
To be fair, measuring movement in feet is a relatively new innovation in D&D. Prior editions used inches just like a war game. I'm not a huge fan of squares or inches, but I can understand the point of not wanting to convert units.
The only POSSIBLE plus to having movement not listed as feet and now listed in squares is for non-Americans. I'm sure the rest of the world doesn't enjoy having to use feet. Now the core book can state, "A square is 5 ft x 5 ft or 1.5 meters x 1.5 meters, but to keep things consistant, all distances will be listed in squares."

Speaking as an un-american (I'm a Canuckle Head), it really doesn't bother you. As long as you designate what a foot is, most people understand.

Anyway, a foot is roughly 3 decimeters, or about 31 centimeters.

Now as for squares, unless you played the old system, or are the DM and have read and memorized the above numbers, then it'll be pretty hard to explain how fast you are moving with squares.

/threadjack

Dark Archive Bella Sara Charter Superscriber

maliszew wrote:
Sebastian wrote:
To be fair, measuring movement in feet is a relatively new innovation in D&D.
Incorrect. I don't have my Holmes Basic Set handy but I can say with certainty that the Moldvay/Cook editions (published in late 1980 but with a copyright date of January 1981), movement was already in feet.

As long as you're being anal retentive, why don't you list the other printings that do use inches, including 1e and 2e. The point remains - D&D has a history of using inches. Don't get me wrong, I'm duly impressed by your mastery of the trivial, it'd just be more compelling if it actually addressed the substance of the argument put forward.

As for the argument that the only advantage to feet is the fact that non-americans don't need to convert, I can't believe you think non-americans are too dumb to convert feet into meters. Talk about dumbing down the game - if you can't convert into meters, you shouldn't even play.

Heck, I think the duration of spells should be exclusively measured in seconds. How long will it take you to figure out that a spell that lasts for 360 seconds lasts 6 minutes. Only morons and chimps can't instantly divide a number by 60 to determine minutes. There's zero difference between expressing durations in seconds, minutes, or heck, why not decades! As long as you know how to convert the units, it doesn't matter what units you use or how complex the conversion!

Of course, the real sucker punch here is that I don't particularly like squares, and I always detested inches, so it's not as if I think is a great change. However, I also recognize that there are in fact benefits from using squares as the unit of measurement. For one thing, it's a lot easier to describe penalties to movement as "costs two extra squares of movement" rather than "costs 10 extra feet of movement" because feet are not normally expressed as a cost.* If you want to discuss flavor and preference and even how immersive a mechanic is, that's cool, I can roll with that, but to say that there is no cost to converting units - you're wrong. Period.

I was going to try and post some more in regards to the OP, but I see it's a waste of time. Knock yourselves out hating. If anyone wants to actually discuss the cost benefits of the changes to elves instead of just rejecting them as "change for the sake of change" I'm available, but I'll bow out of this 4e hater exclusive thread with any attempts to have a conversation instead of joining a mob.**

*Feel free to post how in the construction industry in Eastern Turkduckistan they actually do use feet as a unit of measuring the cost of lumber, so if something requires additional amounts of lumber, they actually would say "we need 15 feet of lumber for this 5 foot section."

**Yeah, I know there was a disclaimer in the OP's post, but I figured that there was still room for some discussion somewhere in the middle. Apologies for thinking we might nonetheless have an intelligent conversation.


Dang.

Sebastian, I admit I seem to have acreated a thread that calls for no reasoned discourse. That wasn't my intent. I was trying to prevent people from making *blind* statements in support of the 4th edition, thus ignoring my point for beginning this thread as a place to discuss concerns. However, I think rationsally and reasonably discussiing concerns, as an exchange of ideas, is important., for setting a tone that discouraged that I apologise, to the boards in general and to you perosnally.

I posted narrowly, and I apologise.

I don't think referring to someone's actions as anal retentive is helpful in any way, but otherwise if you want to debate the value of the elf write up, and what it does or doesn't dsay about where 4e is going, please be my guest. If I am hostess of this threat held in paizo's home, I pfficially give you permission to express you opinions about the subject of the elf write up and what it may tell us.

That's what I started this thread for, and I hope everyone else will treat Sebastions with respect, even if they disagree with his opinions and attitudes.

That, of course, goes for everyone. If we allr emain polite, an exchange of ideas can only be helpful.

Scarab Sages

Sebastian wrote:

I was going to try and post some more in regards to the OP, but I see it's a waste of time. Knock yourselves out hating. If anyone wants to actually discuss the cost benefits of the changes to elves instead of just rejecting them as "change for the sake of change" I'm available, but I'll bow out of this 4e hater exclusive thread with any attempts to have a conversation instead of joining a mob.**

**Yeah, I know there was a disclaimer in the OP's post, but I figured that there was still room for some discussion somewhere in the middle. Apologies for thinking we might nonetheless have an intelligent conversation.

Geez, and the 4e proponents complain that the "haters" are vicious.

Specifically to Sebastian: I had a response written, but then I realized I was falling for the trollbait!

Now, to the point of the recent discussion: As much as I think it's ridiculous to be bent out of shape about having things measured in squares (just do the math, people - do you actually play at a 1:1 scale already such that doing the conversion is going to throw you off?) it gets equally tiring for some people to show up and say "Wow, they are frikkin GENIUSES at WotC - do you see how elegantly they have converted movement into a measure of squares? Don't you see how they are thinking of nothing but us and trying to make our lives a blissful existence?"

I don't care if they measure things in flurgles. As long as it's internally consistent, who cares what the measure is? If that's your biggest problem with the Elf writeup then count yourself fortunate. :)


Dungeon Grrrl wrote:
Plus, the racial power worries me. It's very sparese, and very mechanical. I can't see it ever feeling like anything but a game mechanic, not something that models part of a realistic and fantastical world.

Yes - actually, it makes me think of a game of War Machine with characters "Popping a Feat" once per battle, more than something from an epic fantasy role-playing game...

Dungeon Grrrl wrote:
So, elves are tall now. All previous art and figures that made them short, as they have been in every other edition of DND ever, is invalid.

Right - but Tolkien's elves WERE tall, and he's the benchmark many gamers go by (some of my friends in highschool actually "created" their own elven race - essentially "standard" elves but who never died from old age, and stood 6' tall, called "Olvun Elves" for some reason - just to more closely reflect LOTR).

Dungeon Grrrl wrote:


I continue to feat 4e is going to focus on combat, and not care about social settings. If there...

Well... this is more of the move I see towards a more "video-game-like" experience.

Read the battle report vs. the dragon...
1) It reads more like a battle with a Boss Monster than an Epic Fantasy Battle (and more like a Warhammer or WarMachine Battle Report than either) - though it does feel fairly cinematic.
2) NONE OF THE CHARACTERS HAVE NAMES. You don't have Gorn the Fighter or Elandria the Rogue, you've got "The Fighter," "The Rogue," "The Warlock" and "The Dragon" (etc.). Why? Because what a character CAN DO is more important than WHO that character IS. AT LEAST in the material they've shown. Yeah, this is how a lot of groups play the game, unfortunately (about 1/3 of my college group seemed to) - but the best, longest-running games are NOT run this way; in them, the Character is more important than the Character's Role. This game seems (Note: the final product MAY surprise me and reverse this issue; they are tossing these examples out hastily from playtests and such, and might just be leaving those details out for simplicity. MAYBE) to feel otherwise. What this will lead to, IMO, is several players picking it up out of curiosity, playing a few games, starting over with new characters, playing a few more, repeating two or three more times, then putting the books back on the shelf and maybe pulling them out every few years for a one-off because they've "already done it all" and have nothing really invested in the game (beyond money).

The Exchange RPG Superstar 2009 Top 8

Dungeon Grrrl wrote:


So, elves are tall now. All previous art and figures that made them short, as they have been in every other edition of DND ever, is invalid.

Aaccchhkkkk!! I just realized all my minis are going to be invalid. Switching to 4e means I'll have to go buy new minis.

Or... I could just keep playing 3.5.

Hard choice, really?


Tarren Dei wrote:
Dungeon Grrrl wrote:


So, elves are tall now. All previous art and figures that made them short, as they have been in every other edition of DND ever, is invalid.

Aaccchhkkkk!! I just realized all my minis are going to be invalid. Switching to 4e means I'll have to go buy new minis.

Well, Games Workshop elves were closer to 6' (or at least human height) - ESPECIALLY in the Lord of the Rings line...


Dungeon Grrrl wrote:

Movement in squares. We are no longer trsuted to figure out that 35 feet is 7 squares. This is certainly indiciative of a combat-scene only, buy our minatures mentality, and thus bodes well for ROLE-playing.

Sebastian wrote:


To be fair, measuring movement in feet is a relatively new innovation in D&D. Prior editions used inches just like a war game. I'm not a huge fan of squares or inches, but I can understand the point of not wanting to convert units. Strength is measured by an abstract number - you don't record the number of pounds your character can lift and then divide by 50 to get your bonus to hit and damage - and that works just fine.

Christ, I use 5 foot hexes, I hate squares.

Sebastian wrote:


As long as you're being anal retentive, why don't you list the other printings that do use inches, including 1e and 2e. The point remains - D&D has a history of using inches. Don't get me wrong, I'm duly impressed by your mastery of the trivial, it'd just be more compelling if it actually addressed the substance of the argument put forward.

Santa's not gonna bring you any presents if you talk like that, Sebastian.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 8

DMcCoy1693 wrote:
EileenProphetofIstus wrote:
My understanding of 4th edition is that one of the designer goals is to remove aspects which are deemed not fun. The lack of racial penalties/drawbacks is one of them
I've never considered a racial penalty "unfun." Infact I've always thought of it like chess where the Rooke moved straight vs the Bishop moved diagonal. If the game consisted of all queens, that would quickly become unfun.

But the limitations on many of the races didn't seem to come into play other than to determine what class you were. Does the half-orcs intelligence and charisma penalties matter when all it really does is stop them from being arcane spellcasters and paladins? Dwarves had a penalty to charisma which only effected them when they chose a class that really needed it.

Most of the solutions I've seen to combating your racial penalties has been not needing it.

Low strength? Be a spellcaster.
Low dexterity? Get the heaviest armor you can afford.
Low mental stats? Don't be a spellcaster that needs that stat.

The penalties only seemed to be significant for me when I was playing against the race's favored class. It is not like all the races will be as good as every other race at their favored class.

Looks at the elf and thinks, "Are we in Dark Sun now?"


Kruelaid wrote:


I use 5 foot hexes, I hate squares.

A lot of gamers do.

Heck, I know of two groups that use TRIANGLE grids for movement.
Personally, I use hexes for outdoors or for metric-based games (HERO System, mostly) and squares for everything else (and vary them from 5' to 10' depending on the size of the encounter area).


Zynete wrote:

Most of the solutions I've seen to combating your racial penalties has been not needing it.

The more I think about it, the more it seems that races shouldn't get penalties OR bonuses to stats, but only to rolls/skills involving said stats.

You roll a 17 STR, that's your Strength Score, if you're human, halfling, pixie or ogre.
The pixie and halfling won't be as good at strength-related things as the human, and the ogre should stand head and shoulders above them all (both literally and in terms of how they can use their STR), but they should all have the same actual score.
Likewise, a roll of 9 for CHA reflects "low average"; an elf with Low-average Charisma would still be better at influencing someone via personal charm than a dwarf with the same score, but they score should be the same.
At least IMO.

That way you could still qualify for a class with an attribute counter-to-type; you won't get the same bonuses as someone of a more "suited" race, but you still qualify and can still be competent.

Dark Archive

Cory Stafford 29 wrote:
I don't think any of the races will have drawbacks. They don't even have negative ability score modifiers. Who needs drawbacks when you just want to roxxor?

For me, a character can't ever rock if it doesn't have any flaw. Flaws hugely participate in making characters three-dimensional, IMO.

President, Jon Brazer Enterprises

CEBrown wrote:
Well, Games Workshop elves were closer to 6'

Isn't a 6 foot tall mini no longer considered a mini?!? At what point is is a mini called a massive?


DMcCoy1693 wrote:
CEBrown wrote:
Well, Games Workshop elves were closer to 6'
Isn't a 6 foot tall mini no longer considered a mini?!? At what point is is a mini called a massive?

Well, OK, 6' in scale which is roughly 1 full inch (28 mm between base of foot and eye-level).

Dark Archive

The elven height change doesn't bother me any. Several campaign settings have been using taller elves for years.

Forgotten Realms elves notably jump out to me a being taller. Human sized I believe.

It has been noted that the Golarian elves are taller.

Dragonlance elves where closer methinks to the archetype with Kagonesti being close to the regular elven height and the Qualinesti a little taller and the Silvanesti a little taller still.

I can't recall off the top of my head but I think Wilderlands elves are a bit taller than PHB as well with Gray elves being around 6'0"

Darksun elves where of course unusually tall.

So, I don't think this is really that huge of a deal. Even if it is disliked, a campaign setting will change it regardless. Of things to dislike, it is easily the most readily fixable, just put what you want on your character sheet.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Zynete wrote:
But the limitations on many of the races didn't seem to come into play other than to determine what class you were. Does the half-orcs intelligence and charisma penalties matter when all it really does is stop them from being arcane spellcasters and paladins?
CEBrown wrote:
That way you could still qualify for a class with an attribute counter-to-type; you won't get the same bonuses as someone of a more "suited" race, but you still qualify and can still be competent.

3.x had no racial restrictions for base classes. In fact, some of the most interesting characters are the ones that are different than the "standard": half-orc bards or paladins instead of barbarians, halfling fighters with heavy armor and (small) greatsword instead of rogues, dwarf sorcerers instead of fighters. A -2 to an ability score is not a major hindrance and won't result in an "incompetent" character, unless the player builds them that way.

Statements like this tick me off as they tend to show either a munchkin attitude or a poor grasp of the rules. I can build an effective character from any combination of race and class in the 3.0/3.5 PHB, even using 25-point buy.


DMcCoy1693 wrote:
To be honest, I saw this coming the moment I heard that the fighters get "spells" and wizards never run out of spells. Anything less would have been a disappointment. Short of the long: This isn't D&D; this is Exalted d20. They're not pushing the fun of creating the character and accompishing a great task against long odds. They're pushing the "fun" of winning, of beating the next monster. The "fun" is in the wholesale slaughter of dumb monsters (of which the gnome is now apart of, I guess gnome's aren't slaughter happy enough).

NO DEAR GOD NO!!!!!

Please not Exalted d20 I can't bring myself to run Exalted normally!
By the way nice to hear from you I wish you all a merry christmas and a happy new year!

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8 , Star Voter 2013

Sebastian wrote:
maliszew wrote:
Sebastian wrote:
To be fair, measuring movement in feet is a relatively new innovation in D&D.
Incorrect. I don't have my Holmes Basic Set handy but I can say with certainty that the Moldvay/Cook editions (published in late 1980 but with a copyright date of January 1981), movement was already in feet.

As long as you're being anal retentive, why don't you list the other printings that do use inches, including 1e and 2e. The point remains - D&D has a history of using inches. Don't get me wrong, I'm duly impressed by your mastery of the trivial, it'd just be more compelling if it actually addressed the substance of the argument put forward.

Sebastian, I feel this was uncalled for and hostile. You stated that it is a 'relatively new innovation in D&D' Mailszew simply stated you were incorrect and was kind enough to provide documenation.

The last product (I'm aware of, someone please oorrect me if I'm mistaken) that used feet was the Rules Cyclopedia, dated 1991. Now for most of us, 27 years ago (1981) is not 'recent' If it is, then the entire gaming system is recent.

You presented one statement, it was disproven. Your reply is to attack the poster, and change your arguement from "Measuring movement in feet is a recent innovation' to 'D&D had a history of using inches'.

Please apologize to maliszew.


Giving all of the races bonuses and no penalties is not a good idea.

When choosing a race for your character it's nice to have a clear idea of the pro's and con's of that race.

Stat penalties is one way of giving you that.

If you are halfling then you know that melee weapons are not a good idea. Bard, Sorcerer and Wizard are not a good choice for half orc.

You can still make a halfling paladin or half orc wizard, but you do so with a clear indication of the drawbacks.

But if every race is just bonus, bonus, bonus the choices are less clear.

And as has been said earlier in this thread... drawbacks help with the role-playing aspects.

Bonuses are better for the roll playing.

WOTC seem intent on focusing on the latter.

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