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D&D 5e Discussion

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Posts

  • SUPERSUGASUPERSUGA Registered User regular
    poshniallo wrote: »
    And I'd have that petrification damage be treatable by Medusa blood.
    This right here is probably a good compromise that would please most people. I still think hauling a statue back to safety and spending a few games finding a cure would be fun, though.

  • NealnealNealneal Registered User regular
    edited March 2012
    Unless you're the guy who has to play "Sidekick #2" for the duration of the secondary quest. Having done that, I have no interest in ever doing it again. It wasn't fun then, and won't be any more fun for me next time.

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  • BrainleechBrainleech Registered User regular
    Nealneal wrote: »
    Unless you're the guy who has to play "Sidekick #2" for the duration of the secondary quest. Having done that, I have no interest in ever doing it again. It wasn't fun then, and won't be any more fun for me next time.

    Well when it happened in the game I was playing the person did "roll" poorly and ended up frozen so we did leave them in the cave while we looked for a cure
    As in real life that person went on vacation so I still think of it as a lame excuse for out of action. Whoring it up and drunk was a better excuse

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  • SUPERSUGASUPERSUGA Registered User regular
    The GM should really let you create a character on par with the rest of the party for the duration of the sidequest.

  • BrainleechBrainleech Registered User regular
    Well things that i know have happened when someone's character goes out of action for one reason or another
    They played a town's priest to make sure we returned the objects the orcs stole
    and the others are really for vampire,shadowrun, WEG Star wars, and some of the other werid rpgs I have forced people to play

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  • bssbss BIBIBABIBABIBUBIII Madison, WIRegistered User regular
    SUPERSUGA wrote: »
    The GM should really let you create a character on par with the rest of the party for the duration of the sidequest.

    This is the common defense, but for some people it's either

    a) wholly uninteresting, because they were heavily invested in what is now a man-sized paperweight, or
    b) a pain in the ass, because they just last session finally learned how their first character worked.

    So for some, that's more annoying to them than just saying "fuck you guys, I'm going to play Halo" and leaving. The defense works great for a lot of people, but in my opinion it's another case of where the game's designers have no idea how their game is played (and who is playing it) in home campaigns.

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  • SUPERSUGASUPERSUGA Registered User regular
    edited March 2012
    I see your point, bss. The game seems to have split into such diverse playstyles it almost makes me wonder how much they're compatible at all.

    I saw an experimental game recently where someone ran characters from various editions of D&D (from 0e to 4e) through a couple of sessions using a mishmash of rules and, barring a few little issues (4e characters are maybe a couple of levels ahead of the curve), it sounds like fun was had by all.
    Spoiler:

    No, it wouldn't make a very balanced game. But fun was had. This gives me hope that we don't need to build a wall across the middle of the gaming community.

    SUPERSUGA on
  • ThemindtakerThemindtaker Registered User regular
    SUPERSUGA wrote: »
    This gives me hope that we don't need to build a wall across the middle of the gaming community.
    ...But I already started mixing the cement!
    Phooey.
    Can I keep working on the cross for Monte Cook?

    Horseshoe wrote: »
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  • ToothyToothy Registered User regular
    I think it'd be fun for a lesser medusa to inflict steadily worse statuses on the character it targets with its gaze. So, say for each round the character gets gazed at, the penalties grow worse until on the third-fourth turn, they are turned to stone. The penalties fall off at a period of one per round you're not gazed at. Then you have an encounter where the party needs to work together to get the medusa's attention to get it to bring its gaze to different members. The medusa also gets normal attacks, but a larger sack of hit points to make sure the party doesn't just burn through it fast.

    I think there are plenty of ways to make these effects work within the framework D&D sets up. Multiple saves could even be woven in there, too. You could also work line of sight, by making hide checks behind statues or boulders to get the penalties of the gaze to fall off. There is so much room, but I feel like they can't decide between over-committing to make everything work the same or making everything work different. Especially for abilities that function off of saving throws.

  • InfidelInfidel Too easy. PiltoverRegistered User regular
    In my 4e game I had a dead character they needed to drag around and get resurrected (good thing he was a gnome!)

    The player rolled up a temp character and had a blast with him. His main is still dead actually, we have been on hiatus for a while. <img class=" title=":lol:" class="bbcode_smiley" />

    It depends on the player sure, but there is really a simple matter to this.

    If you don't want to play a temp character, then die die and start a new one.

    Oh, you don't want to? Well, we're not going to just get rid of death period because that undermines a lot of shit that we're working with here.

    (Already have a meh stance towards resurrection, personally.)

    So yeah, if you're against player death, then get rid of petrification sure it makes little sense since there is no real danger anyways.

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  • BrainleechBrainleech Registered User regular
    Most of the people I have played with have the one life to live and no resurrection rule usually
    I thought about it rarely did it come up in D&D for a save or die roll but then it was almost ruetine for Deathwatch

    I do like player death because it's fun to see what they do when it comes to a save or die roll for the most part insane heroics and taking one for the team are usually the answer

    A.jpg
  • SUPERSUGASUPERSUGA Registered User regular
    I'm all for shortening combat, so to me a glass-cannon medusa sounds more appealing than one that has to be juggled and worn down.
    Infidel wrote: »
    If you don't want to play a temp character, then die die and start a new one.

    Oh, you don't want to? Well, we're not going to just get rid of death period because that undermines a lot of shit that we're working with here.
    Completely agree. There are lots of RPGs that encourage an understanding that PCs only die when the player agrees. D&D isn't one of these.

  • NealnealNealneal Registered User regular
    Sorry, didn't know I was playing elves wrong. I'll buck up next time and take it like a champ.

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  • InfidelInfidel Too easy. PiltoverRegistered User regular
    Brainleech wrote: »
    Most of the people I have played with have the one life to live and no resurrection rule usually
    I thought about it rarely did it come up in D&D for a save or die roll but then it was almost ruetine for Deathwatch

    I do like player death because it's fun to see what they do when it comes to a save or die roll for the most part insane heroics and taking one for the team are usually the answer

    I usually have no resurrections in my games because resurrection makes it so hard to make a consistent believable world, and there are other means of avoiding/limiting player death if that is what you want to do.

    Dark Sun? Better believe no resurrections!

    But in earlier said campaign it was set in Eberron and it seemed wrong to go "no cleric, don't gently repose him, there is no rez lol." :)

    I also would feel slightly bad that I killed off one of the main characters (my roomate, the cleric being the only other character who has been there since level 1) in what was just a random encounter. It was a silly mistake and another player was partially to blame. <img class=" title=":lol:" class="bbcode_smiley" />

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  • SUPERSUGASUPERSUGA Registered User regular
    Nealneal wrote: »
    Sorry, didn't know I was playing elves wrong. I'll buck up next time and take it like a champ.
    All of my posts are with regards to what I'd like to see in the next edition of D&D, so don't take them too personally.

  • NealnealNealneal Registered User regular
    I should edit in smiley and then pretend that I am offended you didn't see it. ;)

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  • HenslerHensler Registered User regular
    Maybe it's because I grew up playing Dungeonquest (and, to a lesser extent, Heroquest), but I think that the possibility of player death adds a lot to the game. Hell, one of my favorite RPG systems is Traveller, and you can kill yourself rolling your character in that one. It has to be balanced by a good GM, but I think it keeps players more involved in the game.

  • NealnealNealneal Registered User regular
    Hensler wrote: »
    Maybe it's because I grew up playing Dungeonquest (and, to a lesser extent, Heroquest), but I think that the possibility of player death adds a lot to the game. Hell, one of my favorite RPG systems is Traveller, and you can kill yourself rolling your character in that one. It has to be balanced by a good GM, but I think it keeps players more involved in the game.

    I'd disagree. If characters are dying left and right, I'm not going to be invested in the world. If characters are disposable, then I'm not going to put any effort into giving mine a personality or backstory. That's just me though. I'm not against character death when it serves the story or punishes stupidity. I'm against random, needless character death/removal in service of grittier flavor. I've played in games where we all rolled up 3 characters in the hopes that one would make to 2nd level. I didn't get invested in those characters at all since they were disposable and a single misstep could turn them into bird cage liners.

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  • InfidelInfidel Too easy. PiltoverRegistered User regular
    My point I guess is this:

    You either are playing your game where you want character death or you don't.

    If you do, then you either accept the death or play a temporary character, as a player. Petrification/resurrection/etc. are all forms of giving you a chance to avoid death. If you don't want to avoid death, then don't. No DM or system that has these things requires you to save a character in such a state.

    If you are not allowing for arbitrary character death, then don't bother with petrification/resurrection/etc. since they are ways to get around death. You don't need them and so inflicting them is annoying to players. If you aren't going to have the threat of character elimination, then don't bother with the temporary elimination. It is not there as a standalone mechanism. It is there to give an out from permanent elimination.

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  • VanguardVanguard Drive your cart and your plow over the bones of the dead. Registered User, __BANNED USERS regular
    From a DM perspective, I hope my characters don't do stupid shit to get themselves killed. It's a lot of work to run a long narrative over the course of the year to have it ruined because of dumb decisions.

    Usually, no resurrection and yes, if you're not smart you will die.

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  • NealnealNealneal Registered User regular
    edited March 2012
    I prefer "no rez" games. That gives meaning to my revenant assassin staying in the hag's face to save his friends even though he's well into negative hit points (or my wife's swordmage destroying the BBEG's artifact by teleporting herself into it). Being able to come back from that would completely invalidate that character choice. We have character deaths in our games, but they always have meaning and aren't the result of random chance.

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  • DextolenDextolen Registered User
    Our D&D games have never been focused on an arching story, so the loss of a character isn't the end of the world. If the party has the loot and can retreive the body, they can raise. Typically, the player wants to experiment with some new character class anyway.

  • AbbalahAbbalah Registered User regular
    edited March 2012
    So...everybody likes the 'risk' of character death, but nobody, even the people arguing in favor of it, likes it when a character actually dies as a result of that 'risk'.

    And...this is considered to be an internally consistent, logical opinion to have.


    Interesting.

    Abbalah on
  • InfidelInfidel Too easy. PiltoverRegistered User regular
    Abbalah wrote: »
    So...everybody likes the 'risk' of character death, but nobody, even the people arguing in favor of it, likes it when a character actually dies as a result of that 'risk'.

    And...this is considered to be an internally consistent, logical opinion to have.


    Interesting.

    This is what I was trying to address. You either have the risk or don't, and it is silly and annoying to have the illusion/trappings of death without actually allowing for it.

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  • GrogGrog My sword is only steel in a useful shape.Registered User regular
    It depends on the circumstances of the death. If it was simply bad luck during a throw away encounter with some bandits, I'd allow the group to rez them (if they have the resources). But if it's something more appropriate, like during an end boss fight (or self sacrifice like other people have said) then it would detract from the whole thing if they could then just pay a bit of gold to bring him back.

    I wonder whether having a house rule similar to the MSPA notion that main characters can only die a Heroic or Just death would be useful.

  • InfidelInfidel Too easy. PiltoverRegistered User regular
    Grog wrote: »
    It depends on the circumstances of the death. If it was simply bad luck during a throw away encounter with some bandits, I'd allow the group to rez them (if they have the resources). But if it's something more appropriate, like during an end boss fight (or self sacrifice like other people have said) then it would detract from the whole thing if they could then just pay a bit of gold to bring him back.

    I wonder whether having a house rule similar to the MSPA notion that main characters can only die a Heroic or Just death would be useful.

    What I would recommend is no resurrections, and just massage things so that truly random deaths don't happen. Then you don't need to break the consistency, coming up with an excuse to spare someone is easier imo.

    If you just had rotten terrible luck and are playing strategically, I won't kill kill you. If you do something dumb, and you directly get killed for it, well then that's that. If you want to exchange your life for some overall gain, then go ahead and do it!

    D&D is not really a good system for ignoring death, which is why I don't like resurrection being in there. It's a cop out. If I'm using D&D as my system, the main means of resolution is through combat. If character death is being avoided, then character defeat is pretty much being stepped around. If there is no potential for defeat then I should be using something else more appropriate for my game.

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  • gtrmpgtrmp Registered User regular
    Abbalah wrote: »
    So...everybody likes the 'risk' of character death, but nobody, even the people arguing in favor of it, likes it when a character actually dies as a result of that 'risk'.

    And...this is considered to be an internally consistent, logical opinion to have.


    Interesting.

    This issue is about whether character death should be meaningful (in terms of narrative or character) when it happens, or if reasonably dangerous encounters and hazards should have a real chance of killing characters who screw up or just get unlucky (not that the two aren't often the same thing). Balancing towards the former runs the risk of sapping encounters of any sense of danger if the players know that, short of a TPK or DM fiat, there's effectively no chance of their characters dying... but on the other hand, every game I've ever been in (D&D or otherwise) where someone lost their character to a cascade of bad die rolls fell apart soon afterwards, and I'm sure I'm not alone there. Given the design aesthetics involved in 5e, I'm sure it'll try to split the difference and end up making both death and resurrection so frequent as to be meaningless.

  • SkyCaptainSkyCaptain Registered User regular
    I have no problem with characters dying. In fact, the RPG I'm working on expects that characters are going to die and die in a great bloody mess.

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  • hippofanthippofant Registered User regular
    edited March 2012
    Abbalah wrote:
    So...everybody likes the 'risk' of character death, but nobody, even the people arguing in favor of it, likes it when a character actually dies as a result of that 'risk'.

    And...this is considered to be an internally consistent, logical opinion to have.


    Interesting.

    Uh... doesn't seem inconsistent to me. I don't like getting a GAME OVER in a video game, but I wouldn't really want to play a game where you can't. Just because you don't like it when a character dies doesn't mean you don't like what the risk of dying means systematically for your game as a whole.

    hippofant on
  • AbbalahAbbalah Registered User regular
    I think the primary problem here is that people are conceiving 'player death' and 'player defeat' as being the same thing - which is why they want 'the risk of death', because if no death means no defeat then they can't ever fail and that's boring.

    But death and defeat are not and should not be the same thing.

    Character death is bad for a story. Not 'heroic death for a cause' - sacrificing yourself to save something else isn't really defeat in the first place. That's winning poignantly. - but death due to whatever. Adversity, bad luck, stupidity, etc. "Frodo fucked up a Stealth check and shouldn't have been that close to the orc watchtower to begin with and so he got found and murdered and Sauron won, the end" is a shitty story. But that's not to say that players can't fail or mistakes can't be punished - there are plenty of instances of stories where the protagonists failed in a narratively interesting way, and the requirement for that to happen is that the failure can't kill the goddamn protagonist because if it does nothing is learned and the story ends - the hero dies, his role in the plot ends, all his sidequests get wrapped up with 'sorry, that guy got eaten, this stuff is now irrelevant', and the DM has to figure out a way to work a new character into the story and write the old character out of it in a way that is coherent and interesting, which is nigh on impossible if the character who died was invested in the story in any significant way.

    In contrast, you have defeats that set off interesting plot developments - Frodo loses the Shelob combat and (because the DM didn't go 'derp, you lost the fight and the spider finished you off. Defeat equals death, player death is compelling!') now there's a whole new 'escape from your captors' sidequest that has to get dealt with before he can continue, costing him valuable time. Peter Parker fucks up and doesn't catch the bad guy, and his uncle dies, giving him a whole new pathos and character arc, as well as a villain he's invested in. Etc, etc - the point is that player defeat can easily mean loss of treasure, loss of information, death of NPCs and allies, loss of time, and any number of other things, all of which are negative outcomes that make future challenges harder, but none of which actually kill the characters, instead forcing them to deal with the consequences of their failure - a much more compelling result that doesn't require a plot rewrite every time somebody botches too many rolls in a row.

    Once you accept that death is not the only way for the players to be defeated, then it follows that making player death as unlikely as possible does not make the game less challenging or ensure that the players can't lose, and from there it's pretty easily to justify unintentional character death as wholly negative to the game experience.

  • hippofanthippofant Registered User regular
    True, but non-combat forms of player defeat are not as well codified in the rules (outside of skill challenges), so they can seem to be DM fiat. We've had this problem in our game sometimes, where some NPCs seem to behave irrationally or timelines get weirdly distorted (from the players' point of view). A party's defeat in combat is obvious, clear-cut.

    Additionally, if a party can't die, or at least lose a combat without negative consequences (maybe they get resurrected somewhere else a la Planescape Torment), then they can begin to do all sorts of crazy shit. Given how combat-heavy DnD is typically played - and I'd argue that DnD as a system is combat-heavy, given the rules' focus on combat - to make failure in combat consequence-free is troublesome. I agree that not every combat failure must result in death, but like... those examples you give only work if all the party wins or loses, and there's a limit to how many interesting tricks a DM can think of to "revive" players who lose a combat, I think. (Short of just imbuing it into the whole damn game as a theme.)

  • InfidelInfidel Too easy. PiltoverRegistered User regular
    I already stated why death is defeat. D&D is built upon combat as the primary mechanism of conflict resolution.

    Non-combat defeats being the only possible risk in D&D is a misuse, since you have this entire system and effort put forward by the players where it ... apparently doesn't matter?

    Use a different system.

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  • AbbalahAbbalah Registered User regular
    edited March 2012
    Firstly, it's not consequence-free. That's the point. But the consequences can easily be 'you lost half a day resting and recovering from your beating, and as a result you have half a day less time to accomplish X before the bad guys accomplish Y.' or 'as you regain consciousness it becomes clear that the goblins were less interested in killing you than they were in taking a bunch of your stuff. Might want to go get that back/find new stuff before you try attacking the Bugbear King' or 'your buddy and his posse rode in to rescue you when you fell in combat. They got you out, but only barely - he lost half his men, which were incidentally also the guys he was using to gather information for you. He'll be less able to find things out for you, now' instead of being 'everyone dies. Roll new stuff and, uh, I'll think a reason why a totally different ragtag band of heroes are picking up where the first one left off' - if anything, the death option has LESS impact because the character you lost is getting replaced with a new, equally powerful one and as a result the only lasting impact of the defeat is your attachment to the old character. Mechanically, in the context of the game, the party loses nothing for being defeated.

    Secondly, if your players are losing fights so often that you run through the three examples I just listed top-of-head AND the other dozen or so major permutations thereof in the course of a single campaign, maybe the problem has more to do with the tuning of your encounters than the way you deal with player defeat.

    Abbalah on
  • AbbalahAbbalah Registered User regular
    edited March 2012
    Infidel wrote: »
    I already stated why death is defeat. D&D is built upon combat as the primary mechanism of conflict resolution.

    Non-combat defeats being the only possible risk in D&D is a misuse, since you have this entire system and effort put forward by the players where it ... apparently doesn't matter?

    Use a different system.

    I'm not advocating that we make combat 'not matter.' That's an absurdly reductive way to represent what I am saying.

    My entire point, the whole thing I have been saying, is that combat can matter without defeat killing the players. That there can be alternate consequences for losing a combat besides 'you lose. Game over.' And that those consequences usually going to be narratively preferable. Even if you take the (silly) position that players need to be punished more severely than losing loot/losing time/losing dignity/losing allies/losing story elements, you still have the problem that making the party reroll doesn't actually punish them except in the "Haha, you're having less fun now" way you're trying to avoid - there's no mechanical penalty involved in replacing one character with another, and so the party doesn't actually lose anything when you 'punish' them in this way, whereas 'your intelligence network is weaker because a bunch of them died saving you, and now you'll miss out on some information that might have made your next task easier' is a tangible consequence that will stick with the party for some time.

    And that's without even getting into 'combat mattering' as an end unto itself - that even if there WERE no consequences for failing a combat (a position that is very much not what I am saying) combat matters because DnD combat is fun, and the party likes playing through encounters, and theoretically that's at least part of why they're playing DnD in the first place.

    Abbalah on
  • SUPERSUGASUPERSUGA Registered User regular
    Talk of character death "punishing" characters is a little odd. As far as I'm concerned the intention isn't to punish the players any more than "go to jail" is there to punish players in monopoly. Yeah, it sucks to lose, but you're playing a game. Good and bad things are going to happen, just do your best, learn as you go along and have fun.

    (I'd like to avoid an in-depth analysis of the differences between RPGs and Monopoly, it was just the first example that sprung to mind.)

    Strangely, most RPGs really aren't that great at creating a plot like you'd see in a story or movie. When I play D&D I expect something different from a novel for a whole number of reasons. For the sake of this quote though, let's say we are using book plots as a comparison.
    Abbalah wrote: »
    "Frodo fucked up a Stealth check and shouldn't have been that close to the orc watchtower to begin with and so he got found and murdered and Sauron won, the end" is a shitty story.

    The key here is removing "the end" from that example. If your game's Frodo equivalent gets killed and the magic ring gets taken to the dark lord then there's no "the end" enforced on you. Sauron has the ring and is ready to wreck up middle earth, so what do your new characters do about it?

    You could probably argue that Isildur failed his Will roll to destroy the ring and Bilbo and the dwarves (and later the Fellowship) were the replacement characters to continue the story. It's not a perfect fit, but as I said, RPGs and books are much more different than you might think.

    Awesome stories can emerge from RPGs with character death, it's just a bit different to that of a novel or movie. The characters may be the focus of the game, but you certainly aren't the heroes until you've gotten the job done. Tolkein didn't detail the exploits of the group that delved into Moria and got killed by goblins, but in D&D there's every chance that will be a part of your story. Story grows out of gameplay in D&D, not through the planning of an author with complete control.

    Stealing ideas for great settings, characters and events? That's where it pays to read novels with your game in mind.

  • ToxTox I kill threads Pharezon's human garbage heapRegistered User regular
    SUPERSUGA wrote: »
    Talk of character death "punishing" characters is a little odd. As far as I'm concerned the intention isn't to punish the players any more than "go to jail" is there to punish players in monopoly. Yeah, it sucks to lose, but you're playing a game. Good and bad things are going to happen, just do your best, learn as you go along and have fun.

    Yes, but that's a fundamentally different scenario, because in Monopoly yo-
    SUPERSUGA wrote: »
    (I'd like to avoid an in-depth analysis of the differences between RPGs and Monopoly, it was just the first example that sprung to mind.)

    Oh...oh I see.

    No but seriously, while your points are valid, and character death can be perfectly interesting and narratively useful, those cases are generally more planned out. Right now the group I'm DMing for is trying to find a way to get to the underworld to resurrect my character (because me and the last DM intentionally had him die in the BBEG fight, as this was basically my plot hook for my story arc). It's very meaningful, it's very impactful, and at the end of the day, it was all completely planned out, not the result of some random die roll.

    That's the original issue we were discussing here. It's not whether or not characters should ever die. I think most people accept that it happens. But RPGs are a fantasy world, and one of the reasons we turn to fantasy is to escape shit we hate in reality. Things like, for instance, someone dying randomly and meaninglessly.

    Kill my character, by all means. I'll roll another one, and they'll be just as interesting as the last one was. But don't let my character die because of a few random bad die rolls. That's cheap and meaningless and will sour me on the game. Yes, that's a little silly, considering we're using dice and dice are random number generators. But! The whole reason we have a game system in place is to help mitigate that randomness and guide it in a certain direction. Honor that.

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  • SUPERSUGASUPERSUGA Registered User regular
    Tox wrote: »
    Yes, but that's a fundamentally different scenario, because in Monopoly yo-
    I knew I'd regret that ;)

  • hippofanthippofant Registered User regular
    Abbalah wrote:
    Secondly, if your players are losing fights so often that you run through the three examples I just listed top-of-head AND the other dozen or so major permutations thereof in the course of a single campaign, maybe the problem has more to do with the tuning of your encounters than the way you deal with player defeat.

    It's not that every fight is being lost. It's that every fight has to have a backup plan in case they lose. And it's not even that, because sometimes they win the fight but some people still "die", and in proposing a system where there's no death.... That's a LOT of DMing work, and to a certain extent, if encountered repeatedly, it will again seem to be just DM fiat.

    I'm not saying character death is essential for every campaign - I've tried to run a campaign before where the heroes worked for the God of the Dead, so death just sent them back to Go - but its presence in the majority of campaigns is reasoned and purposeful.

  • SUPERSUGASUPERSUGA Registered User regular
    hippofant wrote: »
    sent them back to Go
    Oh, God, I've opened up the Monopoly floodgates.

  • LochielLochiel Registered User regular
    edited March 2012
    It seems to be coming back to "Role play" vs "Combat Simulator". While D&D really is more of a "Combat Simulator", and thus death should happen at the whim of the dice; a lot (most?) of the people who play D&D play it for "Role Play" and thus character death should happen at the whim of the plot.

    If they want 5E to reflect the desires and actual play of most their players, WotC would make the rules more RP friendly. However, if they want it to be "Nostalgic & Iconic" D&D, death will be random and arbitrary.

    Lochiel on
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