Legends and Lore - What Can You Do?

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Legends and Lore
What Can You Do?
by Monte Cook

One of the most important aspects of the game doesn't get a lot of discussion: What can you do on your turn?

Talk about this column here.

"How much simpler it would be if you just did one thing on your turn."

In this case, simpler does not equate to better. 
"How much simpler it would be if you just did one thing on your turn."

In this case, simpler does not equate to better. 


Indeed. Forced movement + ranged attacks = melee paperweights in such a system.
Aside from his peculiar musings, the thing that I found odd was that he claimed that battles ending in minutes instead of seconds was more realistic. I always thought it was the other way around. Always seemed to me that fights ended when one person stabbed the other. I dunno, though. Maybe he's done research. I haven't.

One-round turns have the problem of ranged attacks. Maybe instead you should get one action, but the actions are still limited -- standard and move. You'd get a standard action one round, a move the next, and then the standard again the next. That'd help keep ranged characters on the level. This system also demands, essentially, that you do away with the necessity to use minor actions. Since no one would want to spend their round drawing their sword, drawing (but not drinking) a potion, or whatever. Not terrible either. But it'd have consequence on variation in the game.
I don't use emoticons, and I'm also pretty pleasant. So if I say something that's rude or insulting, it's probably a joke.
Monte Cook should not be allowed anywhere near mechanics. These ideas are just awful. Having one action per round makes ranged combat completely superior to melee. 

Considering that spellcasters are usually ranged, and Monte loves his casters, maybe that is his intent...

Also, he says battles lasting minutes instead of seconds are realistic. What am I reading?! If you have massive warfare battles should be prolonged, but in D&D battles are usually skirmishes between small groups of combatants. Is everyone using nerf bats and pool noodles?
Ugh.  No no no no no ... garbage, complete and total garbage.

If 'battles should be over in minutes rather than seconds' bugs people, just abstract what a round is.  Instead of X seconds, it's 'however long it takes everybody to do their thing'.
Another day, another three or four entries to my Ignore List.
One-round turns have the problem of ranged attacks. Maybe instead you should get one action, but the actions are still limited -- standard and move. You'd get a standard action one round, a move the next, and then the standard again the next. That'd help keep ranged characters on the level. This system also demands, essentially, that you do away with the necessity to use minor actions. Since no one would want to spend their round drawing their sword, drawing (but not drinking) a potion, or whatever. Not terrible either. But it'd have consequence on variation in the game.


That idea won't have very good results either. Round 1: swordsman moves to archer, archer moves away from swordsman. Round 2: swordsman picks his nose. Archer fires. Rinse, repeat.
My revised 2E PHB (the one that explicitly says "this is not third edition") tells me that a combat round is six seconds long.  That was not a change 3E made.

And in that same book, you were allowed to both move and make an attack, as long as you moved half your speed or less.

This is not a recent change, it did not start with 3E, and reverting it would be insane.  I try to look at things from every side, and see the good and bad to it.  Going to a 'one action per turn' would be analagous to chopping off both your arms.  Sure, you're never going to get a hangnail again, but you have no arms.
The difference between madness and genius is determined only by degrees of success.
So I'm just going out on a limb here and thinking that if Monte is, indeed, in charge of 5E, and this possible 5E mirrors most of the things he discusses, then these boards will have a significant population decrease?
So I'm just going out on a limb here and thinking that if Monte is, indeed, in charge of 5E, and this possible 5E mirrors most of the things he discusses, then these boards will have a significant population decrease?



Not necessarily, just a high population surge on the Previous Editions boards.
Another day, another three or four entries to my Ignore List.
This is just a bad idea. Even if your turn comes up every 5 minutes instead of every 20 not making an attack is boring. "I move up to this monster, okay I'm gunna go grab a sandwhich." Exitement! Plus this will make combats even more slugfesty. Even with the current suite of actions once stuck in melee, from my expereince anyhow, most people don't bother moving much, except maybe to get the flank if it's convinient. So without move it'll just be tweedle-dee and tweedle-dum hitting each other on the head with hammer til one of them falls over.

If the game didn't use a tactical battle mat this would be different. Like the new The One Ring RPG doesn't use a battle mat and everyone gets one (attack) action a round, but it works because of assumptions being made about melee and rules governing when you can be a ranged attack and when you're just way to mobbed to feasably be at range. I've played plenty of games with one-action a round type rules, but none of them used a battle mat, they all used something more abstract.

The one upside is that effects like stun would have a less pronounced effect because the wait between turns would be shorter, but that's a minor consolation prize.
Another "Isn't AD&D wonderful! We should make a new edition copying it!" article.

PLEASE get this guy a job in grocery-chain management! 
"The world does not work the way you have been taught it does. We are not real as such; we exist within The Story. Unfortunately for you, you have inherited a condition from your mother known as Primary Protagonist Syndrome, which means The Story is interested in you. It will find you, and if you are not ready for the narrative strands it will throw at you..." - from Footloose
OTOH, 6 seconds is a rather arbitrary number in its own right (the game essentially chopped the previous one minute with ten segments structure into ten rounds), so I don't think we really ought to be glued to the idea of a round as six seconds long. Why not five or ten? Those are at least easier numbers to deal with conceptually.

A minute, on the other hand, is far too long for many things to make sense. "Cast a spell" worked on a minute-long basis because the notion of spellcasting was a Vance-era one of elaborately waving your arms and chanting for a long time, whereas fantasy magic nowadays tends to be more "point and zap" in concept and image. "Stand around for a long time chanting" is ritual casting, not a combat action.

Likewise, I'd be concerned about the "healbot" problem coming back under a one-action-only system. Mr. Cleric can do something fun or he can heal someone, but he can't do both. That's one of the reasons why minor actions came into being in the first place.

Still, there ARE a number of things that could be done away with in action terms to make the system run more smoothly, "draw/stow an item" stuff in particular (which coincidentally only really serves to complicate PCs' lives because weapon/item-using creatures are apparently able to abstractly ready whatever it is when they use the relevant power). Nevermind the awkwardness of a PC trying to use ranged and melee weapons as appropriate in an encounter, have you ever tried using a potion as a two-weapon or weapon-and-shield character? The number of minor actions you have to burn to juggle items around on top of the minor needed to actually drink the thing is ridiculous (and usually means that potions may as well not exist for such characters). Would it be so bad for a single minor action to cover all of the subsidiary stuff involved in "using a potion"?

Likewise, do we REALLY need "load a crossbow" as a separate action from attacking with the thing? I doubt that we'd miss it.

I suppose I could see an argument for collapsing certain action types together as well. "Free actions", in most cases, can simply be "not an action", and various move and minor actions can probably be consolidated into a single "support action" type, along with opportunity/immediate being consolidated into a single "triggered action" category.

And in the process, various "management" actions (readying/stowing items, etc) can simply disappear.

My experience, at least, is that the explosion of different action types (and the similar but slightly different ways that many of them work) is a bigger cause of slowdown than the fact that the PC has more than one action per turn.

--

I can't help but note that the official character sheet format presented by the character builder is an even bigger culprit when it comes to the game bogging down. Far more time is lost to players having to shuffle through pages upon pages of cards and feature lists that often don't fully explain how they work or interact with one another (or even contain all of the relevant information to let the player know how they work) than from the players resolving the actions themselves.
About the move vs attack dilemma: I'm just waiting to hear this go the way of early CRPGs really, like Wizardry 1 and the first 10 Final Fantasies. Movement and positioning are highly abstracted or just not represented at all. So there wouldn't be a move action anymore, just attack, magic, item! That would certainly get rid of the grid and figurines that have been complained about in an earlier column. As many have commeneted, you just get a ton of arguments if positioning matters but you don't track it, so the obvious move is at least an rule option where positioning doesn't matter.

My revised 2E PHB (the one that explicitly says "this is not third edition") tells me that a combat round is six seconds long.  That was not a change 3E made.



I think Monte is justified in glossing past "2.5" edition, and referring to the 1989 book as 2E like virtually everyone else does.
I think 2E Revised was the first time they changed the round from one minute to six seconds. Various other things got changed then too: for example, the damage type-vs-armor type table (that no one ever used) was dumped in favor of specific vs-X perks being assigned to individual weapons.
These articles are becoming truly baffling. While at least relatively articulate, I simply do not understand how some of the conclusions are being reached. Monte must be playing very, very, VERY different versions of D&D than the average player. Even Chess Pieces can move and attack in the same round!
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Once again, I find myself wondering if Monte's just pulling our legs.

The suggestion is just so outlandishly backwards.  It's like Boeing deciding it might be worth it to look into a biplane jet-liner.

 

 

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Are you sure? 10 rounds were worth one turn and a turn was worth 10 minutes.



Absolutely sure.  The "2.5" PHB separated rounds into 'rounds' and 'combat rounds'.  A round was one minute, and a turn was ten minutes.  A combat round, on the other hand, was six seconds. 


Also, I do remember the weapon-type-vs armor chart still being in the book.  (I also know of no one who used it, however.)


I think Monte is justified in glossing past "2.5" edition, and referring to the 1989 book as 2E like virtually everyone else does.



Given that there were almost no changes made in the revised book, that's certainly fair most of the time.

However, since the revised one was the first edition of D&D I played (or owned), it's the one that comes to mind when I think of 2E.  I don't even know specifically what the differences are, I just like to cite my sources.
The difference between madness and genius is determined only by degrees of success.
I disagree with Mr Cook alot, and have been against almost everything in L&L since mearls was writeing it... but I have to see some good here, and admit he may have a point.

I wonder if there is a magic balance point where I can have tactile thought, and varraity of options mixed with simple rules and quick play...
         

Before posting, ask yourself WWWS: What Would Wrecan Say?


Are you sure? 10 rounds were worth one turn and a turn was worth 10 minutes.



Absolutely sure.  The "2.5" PHB separated rounds into 'rounds' and 'combat rounds'.  A round was one minute, and a turn was ten minutes.  A combat round, on the other hand, was six seconds. 


Also, I do remember the weapon-type-vs armor chart still being in the book.  (I also know of no one who used it, however.)


I think Monte is justified in glossing past "2.5" edition, and referring to the 1989 book as 2E like virtually everyone else does.



Given that there were almost no changes made in the revised book, that's certainly fair most of the time.

However, since the revised one was the first edition of D&D I played (or owned), it's the one that comes to mind when I think of 2E.  I don't even know specifically what the differences are, I just like to cite my sources.



at the end of 2e we had some fun with the diffrent 'edtions' we were all playing... one of our PHBs didn't have broad swords, one had diffrent back stab restrictions, and I had switched to useing the back of the 'domains of dread' book as my phb.  I remeber about 1997, maybe 98 when we meet a group who told us they were playing fourth edtion, becuse all the revised rules where 3e, and combat and tactics and skills and powers (building your own class) was 4e.  If I could guess, if they updated they would call the current game 8th or 9th edtion...

Before posting, ask yourself WWWS: What Would Wrecan Say?

With the "you can do one action on your turn" approach, some players would feel like they wasted their turn if they didn't do something significant like make an attack or cast a spell. People wouldn't want to move or do anything else. This, however, would be less true if play moved a lot faster.



This is of course nonsense. People don't want to "just move" not just because of the thrill of attacking something (which is definately there) but also because a move hardly ever helps anyone win the day.

If you want people to move, make moving actually worth something as far as combat resolution goes. If you throw a deathray into the encounter that characters can swing around to incinerate everything on the playing field and put a few monsters near it, then you'll see them double moving. But if a move is basically a waste of an action, then nobody is going to do it. And if they're forced to do it (because of range constraints) they'll just be annoyed that they're basically not contributing much, because movement simply isn't very useful most of the time.

Now, if you want a game where movement without combat is really, really important... it's already been mentioned in this thread. Since Monte likes looking back at old games for inspiration, maybe he should look at the father of wargaming. In that game, simply moving forward could alter the entire game and playing field, no combat required. In fact, attacking something was always the resolution of clever movement and positioning and had nothing at all to do with just running up to things and hitting them until they stopped moving. Montes system could work, and work really well, if he stopped looking at AD&D and instead looked at this marvellous game for ideas.

I'm talking, of course, about chess. 
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Want to give your players a kingdom of their own? I made a 4e rule system to make it happen!

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Update 5th Sep 2011: Added a sample kingdom, as well as sample of play.
Chess allows you to move and attack in the same action. So that basically reduces combat to Charge and Move. Perhaps the true purpose of the charge-centric Essentials classes. :P
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Here's another article by Cook trying to reduce and smash melee and uplift spellcasters as they were in previous editions. I don't think I'll be buying his fifth edition. If I wanted to play an unbalanced game where the only real contributors were spell casters I'd play 3.5. Which I don't anymore for good reason.

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

There is a nice little self created divide here. Shame there can't be more acceptance instead. I feel that is where the future of the game should be.

All this vitriol, pushing away, retroactive retaliation, and preemptive striking needs to stop.

I keep trying but some won't let things go. Will you?

 

Because you like something, it does not mean it is good. Because you dislike something, it does not mean it is bad. Because it is your opinion, it does not make it everyone's opinion. Because it is your opinion, it does not make it truth. Because it is your opinion, it does not make it the general consensus. Whatever side you want to take, at least remember these things.

I would call any capture in Chess just "attack", even if it involves moving around as well. My point was that in Chess, "just moving" is totally worth it. If you want to have a system where you only get 1 action, and that action might be "just a move", then you have to find a way to make walking around the battlefield worth it. Nobody is going to spend his entire action (which could've been an attack) just to get a +1 bonus to attack rolls. However they might very well do it if it means their next blow (or a friend's blow) deals double damage, or if they only take half damage from attacks by doing so.

You need to make positioning effects and terrain effects way stronger for anyone to consider a move worth it in all but the most extreme of situations. Terrain would be at least as important as the monsters themselves (which honestly is not a bad thing, at all) in determining how the battle goes down.
Epic Dungeon Master

Want to give your players a kingdom of their own? I made a 4e rule system to make it happen!

Your Kingdom awaits!
Update 5th Sep 2011: Added a sample kingdom, as well as sample of play.
To make up for the lost attack, you'd need significantly more than a +100% bonus to your effectiveness, because every round you fail to kill something is another round it gets to act against you.

Moreover, we already have a LOT of this using defenders, OAs, and so forth. It's reinventing the wheel but making it an oval.
Fire Blog Control, Change, and Chaos: The Elemental Power Source Elemental Heroes Example Classes Xaosmith Exulter Chaos Bringer Director Elemental Heroes: Looking Back - Class and Story Elemental Heroes: Complete Class Beta - The Xaosmith (January 16, 2012) Elemental Heroes: Complete Class Beta - The Harbinger (May 16, 2012) Check out my Elemental Heroes blog series and help me develop four unique elemental classes.
Most of the complaints about not being able to attack and move sound pretty small-minded.  If the other side is stuck not being able to move and attack at the same time it's at least fair.  Leave in OAs for leaving adjacent squares or Ranged Attacks and it's really action packed.

The real problem is in Melee vs Melee throwdowns.  The first person to move adjacent to the other concedes an attack to his opponent.  You'd just get stuck with dudes circling each other all day because the first one to move adjacent gets smacked.

If you leave in OAs and let dudes move+melee in the same turn, moving up to a guy and smacking him means you're smacking him three times vs 1 ranged attack from him (once on your turn, once when he provokes, and once more on his next turn) or 0 attacks if he withdraws and can't move farther than you.  They would actually die for essentially free.

An OA becomes really powerful because one attack is basically a whole extra turn!  Maybe they'd ditch OAs but keep charging (a pretty basic move+attack action that we all know and understand but seem to be forgetting)?
This is just a bad idea. Even if your turn comes up every 5 minutes instead of every 20 not making an attack is boring.



I dont know about you, but I would rather do one significant thing every 5 minutes, then one significant thing every 20 minutes.

So I'm just going out on a limb here and thinking that if Monte is, indeed, in charge of 5E, and this possible 5E mirrors most of the things he discusses, then these boards will have a significant population decrease?



Losing 6 people is not a significant population decrease

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I dont know about you, but I would rather do one significant thing every 5 minutes, then one significant thing every 20 minutes.



I totally agree with you, and I think most people do. The issue seems to be that most people don't consider "I move three squares" to be significant in basically any version of D&D. That'd have to change before this system would work.
Epic Dungeon Master

Want to give your players a kingdom of their own? I made a 4e rule system to make it happen!

Your Kingdom awaits!
Update 5th Sep 2011: Added a sample kingdom, as well as sample of play.
This article is really, really bad.

Really bad.

Terrible.

Ugh.
Harrying your Prey, the Easy Way: A Hunter's Handbook - the first of what will hopefully be many CharOp efforts on my part. The Blinker - teleport everywhere. An Eladrin Knight/Eldritch Knight. CB != rules source.
This article is really, really bad.

Really bad.

Terrible.

Ugh.



Only if you want Melee Martial characters to be balanced and equal to Ranged and Casters.

Cook and some people here do not.

I do.

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

There is a nice little self created divide here. Shame there can't be more acceptance instead. I feel that is where the future of the game should be.

All this vitriol, pushing away, retroactive retaliation, and preemptive striking needs to stop.

I keep trying but some won't let things go. Will you?

 

Because you like something, it does not mean it is good. Because you dislike something, it does not mean it is bad. Because it is your opinion, it does not make it everyone's opinion. Because it is your opinion, it does not make it truth. Because it is your opinion, it does not make it the general consensus. Whatever side you want to take, at least remember these things.

This article is really, really bad.

Really bad.

Terrible.

Ugh.



Only if you want Melee Martial characters to be balanced and equal to Ranged and Casters.

Cook and some people here do not.

I do.




What are you talking about?  Charging would absolutely annihilate casters.





I dont know about you, but I would rather do one significant thing every 5 minutes, then one significant thing every 20 minutes.



I totally agree with you, and I think most people do. The issue seems to be that most people don't consider "I move three squares" to be significant in basically any version of D&D. That'd have to change before this system would work.




If things are basically set up to the point where lots of turns are being resolved simply by moving, you get back around to the meaty stuff a lot faster.  PLUS it could open up a less awful initiative system which I've been on a bit of a tear for lately since I had the brilliant notion that it could probably fix everything.


I get the feeling that gameplay would involve melee characters having to either keep enemies away from their ranged attackers so that the ranged attackers don't have to waste their action retreating/moving around to avoid getting murdered, or getting into the enemy ranged attackers' faces in order to kill them. 
It involves not only how the game organizes action types (action, standard action, move, move action, move equivalent action, minor action, free action, swift action, etc.) but what can be accomplished in a round, and even how long a round lasts. These considerations impact the complexity of the game, the abstractness of the game, and even the speed at which play proceeds around the table.



I'm not sure what edition of the game this gentleman has been playing lately, but the bolded terms are from previous editions.

Using them hints to me that he isn't playing the same game I've been playing since 4e launched.

This entire article is...just crap. 1 action on your turn? Ok...I charge if I'm a melee character. Or I just maked a ranged character with lots of slow effects and BAM! I beat the enemy monsters because they can NEVER GET TO ME.

Just...so much fail...
I_Roll_20s @twitter. Not always SFW. I may prefer 4e, but I will play and enjoy almost any edition, and indeed almost any table top RPG, with my friends. Down with Edition Wars. Shut up and roll your dice. :P
This article is really, really bad.

Really bad.

Terrible.

Ugh.



Only if you want Melee Martial characters to be balanced and equal to Ranged and Casters.

Cook and some people here do not.

I do.




What are you talking about?  Charging would absolutely annihilate casters.





I dont know about you, but I would rather do one significant thing every 5 minutes, then one significant thing every 20 minutes.



I totally agree with you, and I think most people do. The issue seems to be that most people don't consider "I move three squares" to be significant in basically any version of D&D. That'd have to change before this system would work.




If things are basically set up to the point where lots of turns are being resolved simply by moving, you get back around to the meaty stuff a lot faster.  PLUS it could open up a less awful initiative system which I've been on a bit of a tear for lately since I had the brilliant notion that it could probably fix everything.


I get the feeling that gameplay would involve melee characters having to either keep enemies away from their ranged attackers so that the ranged attackers don't have to waste their action retreating/moving around to avoid getting murdered, or getting into the enemy ranged attackers' faces in order to kill them. 



I think that's where my problem with this whole idea is coming from. None of that seems like it can happen. If all you can only do one thing in a round it doesn't seem like (to me at least) that it would ever get to the meaty bits. Everybody is running toward and away from each other. With only one action per round the melee characters have no way to keep people from their own ranged characters. It seems like it puts anyone without a ranged attack at a huge disadvantage. Once their in the enemies face (if they can even make it there) there's nothing to do because their turn ends.

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

There is a nice little self created divide here. Shame there can't be more acceptance instead. I feel that is where the future of the game should be.

All this vitriol, pushing away, retroactive retaliation, and preemptive striking needs to stop.

I keep trying but some won't let things go. Will you?

 

Because you like something, it does not mean it is good. Because you dislike something, it does not mean it is bad. Because it is your opinion, it does not make it everyone's opinion. Because it is your opinion, it does not make it truth. Because it is your opinion, it does not make it the general consensus. Whatever side you want to take, at least remember these things.

It involves not only how the game organizes action types (action, standard action, move, move action, move equivalent action, minor action, free action, swift action, etc.) but what can be accomplished in a round, and even how long a round lasts. These considerations impact the complexity of the game, the abstractness of the game, and even the speed at which play proceeds around the table.



I'm not sure what edition of the game this gentleman has been playing lately, but the bolded terms are from previous editions.

Using them hints to me that he isn't playing the same game I've been playing since 4e launched.

This entire article is...just crap. 1 action on your turn? Ok...I charge if I'm a melee character. Or I just maked a ranged character with lots of slow effects and BAM! I beat the enemy monsters because they can NEVER GET TO ME.

Just...so much fail...



K this is my last post here til anything better comes up, but is anyone really thinking about how this would play out, or am I the only really trying to set up a game in my head to see how it would go?  You have ONE ACTION.  You need to slow the entirety of team monster down with that single action before they close in on you.  If you're two moves away you get two shots.  Good luck, son.
I'm also working on a system that could get this setup functional, and I'm full of ideas. But none of them would even remotely resemble what current D&D looks and plays like. So yeah, they'd have to make a major overhaul, but "1 action" play could be both extremely tactical, extremely action-movie-like and really cool, but it'd be an entirely new game you're playing as far as mechanics go.

I'll give a quick breakdown when I think it's presentable if anybody cares Tongue Out
Epic Dungeon Master

Want to give your players a kingdom of their own? I made a 4e rule system to make it happen!

Your Kingdom awaits!
Update 5th Sep 2011: Added a sample kingdom, as well as sample of play.
This article is really, really bad.

Really bad.

Terrible.

Ugh.



Only if you want Melee Martial characters to be balanced and equal to Ranged and Casters.

Cook and some people here do not.

I do.




What are you talking about?  Charging would absolutely annihilate casters.





I dont know about you, but I would rather do one significant thing every 5 minutes, then one significant thing every 20 minutes.



I totally agree with you, and I think most people do. The issue seems to be that most people don't consider "I move three squares" to be significant in basically any version of D&D. That'd have to change before this system would work.




If things are basically set up to the point where lots of turns are being resolved simply by moving, you get back around to the meaty stuff a lot faster.  PLUS it could open up a less awful initiative system which I've been on a bit of a tear for lately since I had the brilliant notion that it could probably fix everything.


I get the feeling that gameplay would involve melee characters having to either keep enemies away from their ranged attackers so that the ranged attackers don't have to waste their action retreating/moving around to avoid getting murdered, or getting into the enemy ranged attackers' faces in order to kill them. 



I think that's where my problem with this whole idea is coming from. None of that seems like it can happen. If all you can only do one thing in a round it doesn't seem like (to me at least) that it would ever get to the meaty bits. Everybody is running toward and away from each other. With only one action per round the melee characters have no way to keep people from their own ranged characters. It seems like it puts anyone without a ranged attack at a huge disadvantage. Once their in the enemies face (if they can even make it there) there's nothing to do because their turn ends.



You snuck in there while I was washing my hands of this thread, but this is okay.

I would make the following conclusions about this system based on what I've thought about it.  The ranged characters can only retreat so melee attackers don't kill them or attack so they can move the fight towards conclusion.  The melee characters are trying to get into melee in the first place, ideally with a ranged attacker because they will either cripple the ranged attacker by forcing him to fight with a melee weapon or they will get two attacks as the ranged attacker provokes.

You know what a ranged attacker wants to do, it wants to be able to stand still without an enemy melee combatant nearby so that it can fire.  The melee attackers want to get close to something so that they can kill it.

Melee attackers are then faced with a choice, do they chase down the enemy ranged attackers or stay near their ranged allies?  Chasing down the enemy ranged attackers means the enemy's offensive power will be decreased because their ranged attackers will either be using their turns to run away or get themselves killed faster.  The real part that people are getting distracted before reaching is that if a fighter stays near his wizard and an enemy Barbarian comes to kill the wizard, once the fighter engages the barbarian in melee the barbarian can no longer chase the wizard around with impunity.  He will have to leave himself vulnerable by charging and to OAs.  He then has the choice of slugging it out with the fighter or pursuing the wizard at risk to himself.

I can just imagine a lot more going on here than most people are giving it credit for.

Moving 5 squares actually WILL be a significant action because the enemy wizard is going to have to start moving away from you instead of shooting your friend, before you get any closer.
It involves not only how the game organizes action types (action, standard action, move, move action, move equivalent action, minor action, free action, swift action, etc.) but what can be accomplished in a round, and even how long a round lasts. These considerations impact the complexity of the game, the abstractness of the game, and even the speed at which play proceeds around the table.



I'm not sure what edition of the game this gentleman has been playing lately, but the bolded terms are from previous editions.

Using them hints to me that he isn't playing the same game I've been playing since 4e launched.

This entire article is...just crap. 1 action on your turn? Ok...I charge if I'm a melee character. Or I just maked a ranged character with lots of slow effects and BAM! I beat the enemy monsters because they can NEVER GET TO ME.

Just...so much fail...



K this is my last post here til anything better comes up, but is anyone really thinking about how this would play out, or am I the only really trying to set up a game in my head to see how it would go?  You have ONE ACTION.  You need to slow the entirety of team monster down with that single action before they close in on you.  If you're two moves away you get two shots.  Good luck, son.

You could do it easily by having ranged attackers with high initiative and slows.

Wizards with AOE slows. Rangers with single target slows. Warlocks with single target slows.

Anything that prevents the monsters from moving (slows, creation of difficult terrain, wall creation, roots, immobilized, etc).

Now you the freedom to pick away at the monsters for longer than you had before - assuming the monsters aren't also mostly ranged because in the action economy where either you move OR attack ranged monsters will be more efficient for DMs to use to challenge parties with.

Now we're playing a game where neither side moves, and just lobs attacks at each other.

I just don't see it being as much fun as the current system where you have Move Minor Standard.
I_Roll_20s @twitter. Not always SFW. I may prefer 4e, but I will play and enjoy almost any edition, and indeed almost any table top RPG, with my friends. Down with Edition Wars. Shut up and roll your dice. :P
I'm also working on a system that could get this setup functional, and I'm full of ideas. But none of them would even remotely resemble what current D&D looks and plays like. So yeah, they'd have to make a major overhaul, but "1 action" play could be both extremely tactical, extremely action-movie-like and really cool, but it'd be an entirely new game you're playing as far as mechanics go.

I'll give a quick breakdown when I think it's presentable if anybody cares




I actually do, let's hear it ASAP!

I gave my breakdown of what I imagine going on with melee characters who are suddenly tasked with all the positioning burdens, it basically amounts to a slightly lower-power game in that there's less crazy crap going on and a lot more finding the right place to stand.  3.5 was already a lot like that anyways what with full attacks and all, but I want to see how it could turn out a different way.
I wouldn't say a system based on a single action per round would never work.  I just don't think it's something you could plug and play into 4e-like mechanics.  It would need, by necessity, to be a much more narrativist system, where D&D is very heavily simulationist.

It's a terrible article, because Monte doesn't even start trying to make that distinction, and I'd certainly infer from the article that he was talking about a system when you take 'standard, move, minor'., and replace it with 'standard' - essentially, everyone's Dazed.  And that sounds dull.
Harrying your Prey, the Easy Way: A Hunter's Handbook - the first of what will hopefully be many CharOp efforts on my part. The Blinker - teleport everywhere. An Eladrin Knight/Eldritch Knight. CB != rules source.
It could work if you

A: reduced monster HP
B: Kept a good charge mechanic
C: Reintroduced Full Attack for melee combatants
D: Kept some sort of punishing mechanic to make melee people "sticky"

I think it would be harder to balance than the current system, and potentially a lot less fun for some classes / races (oh, your speed is only 5 and you're a melee fighter? Ooooh, that's going to be at least 2 turns of moving before you can charge....)
I_Roll_20s @twitter. Not always SFW. I may prefer 4e, but I will play and enjoy almost any edition, and indeed almost any table top RPG, with my friends. Down with Edition Wars. Shut up and roll your dice. :P
It involves not only how the game organizes action types (action, standard action, move, move action, move equivalent action, minor action, free action, swift action, etc.) but what can be accomplished in a round, and even how long a round lasts. These considerations impact the complexity of the game, the abstractness of the game, and even the speed at which play proceeds around the table.



I'm not sure what edition of the game this gentleman has been playing lately, but the bolded terms are from previous editions.

Using them hints to me that he isn't playing the same game I've been playing since 4e launched.

This entire article is...just crap. 1 action on your turn? Ok...I charge if I'm a melee character. Or I just maked a ranged character with lots of slow effects and BAM! I beat the enemy monsters because they can NEVER GET TO ME.

Just...so much fail...



K this is my last post here til anything better comes up, but is anyone really thinking about how this would play out, or am I the only really trying to set up a game in my head to see how it would go?  You have ONE ACTION.  You need to slow the entirety of team monster down with that single action before they close in on you.  If you're two moves away you get two shots.  Good luck, son.

You could do it easily by having ranged attackers with high initiative and slows.

Wizards with AOE slows. Rangers with single target slows. Warlocks with single target slows.

Anything that prevents the monsters from moving (slows, creation of difficult terrain, wall creation, roots, immobilized, etc).

Now you the freedom to pick away at the monsters for longer than you had before - assuming the monsters aren't also mostly ranged because in the action economy where either you move OR attack ranged monsters will be more efficient for DMs to use to challenge parties with.

Now we're playing a game where neither side moves, and just lobs attacks at each other.

I just don't see it being as much fun as the current system where you have Move Minor Standard.




But move+attack (charge) is more efficient than stand+attack (ranged attack) against a ranged attacker because the ranged attacker is then forced to provoke an OA in order to do anything significant.  You're now literally twice as efficient for having engaged the archer in melee.

If you remove the punishing mechanic it becomes a fighter charging after a barbarian charging after a wizard who is just running for his life and then the wizard dies and then the barbarian dies and then GG.  That's clearly terrible.

If you leave it in then simply provoking an OA is HUGE because they get literally an entire extra turn, you don't need a special stickiness mechanic like marks.  Melee characters get OAs, ranged don't, simple as that.  It also creates decision points when the fighter is chasing the barbarian who is chasing the wizard.  The barbarian has to decide if he wants to keep chasing the wizard and letting the fighter attack him twice for every charge (which would probably even out to him dying at about the same rate as the wizard if not faster) or duke it out with the fighter and hope he gets some backup.


EDIT: I would also see potential solutions in implementation of ranged slowing powers.  For starters, you'd only be slowing down the enemy melee combatants, who would naturally be more sturdy than ranged combatants.  Team monster could instead choose to outdamage you (i would imagine slowing would do less damage) and pick off your ranged guys who are wrecking their melee guys.  Since they no longer need to kill your ranged guys, their melee guys could then choose to stay close to their ranged allies to ruin your own melee dudes' attempts to kill their ranged guys so all you did was leave your ranged guys open to attacks from ranged enemies til they all died and now your melee guys are getting shot and stabbed simultaneously.