Adapting Advantage/Disadvantage

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One of the biggest buzzes from the D&D next is the new Advantage/Disadvantage (Advantage being 2d20 pick the highest and disadvantage being 2d20 pick the lowest) mechanic, and for one it's got me excited for a equivalent rule in 4e to get rid of the fiddly little pluses or minuses.

The first step is to recognize it though for what it is, Advantage and Disadvantage is an accuracy tool, not a bonus. The key difference here is that a bonus is something to expand your DC, while an accuracy bonus should only serve to help your accuracy.

Now in 4e, all bonuses serve both functions. Combat advantage IMO should serve as an accuracy enhancer only, not as a DC range booster. While a feat bonus to hit is essentially a DC narrower.

Though as I said it's a bit convoluted in 4e as accuracy and DC expansion is essentially the same thing. But what if it wasn't? 

lets take combat advantage for a moment, what if we instead added Advantage to it? Now combat advantage is only an accuracy booster. Likewise with cover or concealment, perhaps cover shouldn't be able to push a DC out of your reach but rather just hinder your odds.

At the moment I am experimenting with replacing most Bonuses or penalties larger than 2 to an advantage or disadvantage. For example Superior cover, Total concealment and Running for disadvantages But on the bonus side it's a bit harder as most bonuses only come in +2's. with advantage im leaning more on certain conditions granting avantage, Dazed, Stunned and blinded are just a few of the more dangerous ones, but perhaps if it works out maybe flanking or hidden.

Whare are your thoughts Forums?

Play whatever the **** you want. Never Point a loaded party at a plot you are not willing to shoot. Arcane Rhetoric. My Blog.

Was hands down what I got most excited for about the Next playtest. While I like doing OP it can result in a lot of number crunching and 4e system itself has so many modifiers that can come into play. This seemed to simplify it for a lot of situations and to me made sense. The sadness of a player rolling for disadvantage and getting something like an 18 followed by 5 or vice versa for advantage should liven things up I think.
This was something that got my attention too, and one thing that came up quickly is what happens to all those effects which already let you roll twice and take the higher? I think most of them could be labeled as Advantage however you come to the Avenger.


Does the Avenger get 3 rolls or 4? Having it still get 2 rolls isn't fair to the class, as everyone else now has ways to get their schtick (and with CA being very common these days, thats very often).


Its also a bit perplexing for me in the way to get it to work in Maptool, but thats a more personal thing, lol.     
for the avenger, I might do something like the avenger gets advantage against his oath and cannot have disadvantage ever against it.

Play whatever the **** you want. Never Point a loaded party at a plot you are not willing to shoot. Arcane Rhetoric. My Blog.

this guy did an interesting breakdown, its basically a -5ish kind of penalty...most of the time. pretty cool article i thought

onlinedungeonmaster.com/2012/05/24/advan...

 i like stuff like this, it reminds me of world of darkness dice pools sort of. i dont know if i will add it into my 4e games but i dont dislike it
Obviously something is going to need to be tweaked/changed if the Avenger class makes it to 5e for it to stand out since rouges will get advantage a lot from what I can tell.
Obviously something is going to need to be tweaked/changed if the Avenger class makes it to 5e for it to stand out since rouges will get advantage a lot from what I can tell.



Actually its largely DM fiat as flanking doesn't automatically grant advantage. Though I doubt the avenger's appearance in 5e will look anything like we're used to, if it even happens.
I was thinking more of the pre-gen halfing rogue in the playtest that is pretty much able to hide almost anywhere (attacking from stealth = auto advantage) in combat and get advantage on attacks.
avenger will likely be a theme if it makes it and its mechanics stripped and burnt. keep in mind there were avengers as early as becmi and they didnt get any kind of double roll
My favorite part of Advantage/Disadvantage is Disadvantage. That is, all the moments in 4e where you do something bad that now grant every enemy CA could instead just grant you Disadvantage. That keeps your turn nice and tighty instead of having your actions trickle into other creature's action and having to remember stuff in subsequent turns. I'm not sure yet if that would have too much impact/change on the game, but it is interesting to think about.
Something that recently came up in our group and that isn't unreasonable to think about:

You get a +2 for CA and that's it.

Hitting a target that is flanked by you is no harder than hitting a target that is stunned, prone, flanked by you, glowing with Faerie Fire, and a dozen other effects that make it grant CA.

At a certain point, with so many debilitating effect stacking on this poor target, it should become trivially easy to land an effective attack on it.

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One idea that's been played with is that "you get another d20 roll for each effect on the target that grants Combat Advantage".

Now, this might be overkill and it probably is. But it's an interesting thing to think about and try to work out or even playtest.

In my next game, I'm considering doing something with the Advantage/Disadvantage system. Exactly how much of it I'll use or what variants I'll implement, I'm not sure right now.
Could be intersting. My thoughts are that Advantage/Disadvantage streamline the process and make it swingier because you can only have one or the other and advantage or disadvantage from different sources doesn't stack.  Rolling more than one bonus dice just ups the chances for critical hits and fails.
Rolling more than one bonus dice just ups the chances for critical hits and fails.



True in every account, it does leave me wondering: Would more critical hits be such a bad thing?

In my group, we don't use any special rules for Natural 1's. We just consider an automatic miss.

But it could open up space for a valid strategy where players stack up several conditions on a target to increase their chances of a critical hit. It honestly sounds almost expected that a creature with several impeding conditions would be easier to strike in a vulnerable area or particularly devastating way.

Would it make critical hits more frequent? Absolutely.
Would it make critical hits more predictable? Sometimes.
Would that be cool? Quite possibly.
It's definitely something to think about. I think if you are going to ramp up the percentages on both of those than something equally powerfull needs to happen on a critical miss to make up for the much easier critical hits. One of my favorite things about my friend's chaos sorceror is that when he crit fails all creatures in close burt (2 I think) get pushed 1 square away from him.
It's definitely something to think about. I think if you are going to ramp up the percentages on both of those than something equally powerfull needs to happen on a critical miss to make up for the much easier critical hits. One of my favorite things about my friend's chaos sorceror is that when he crit fails all creatures in close burt (2 I think) get pushed 1 square away from him.



That's actually kinda cool. A pretty good and not overly punishing way to handle critical misses.

We moved away from using any effect on critical misses since it started to feel real silly how 5% of the time a super-trained-ultra-warrior would accidentally drop his sword, or get stuck it stuck, or a wall or have their fireball explode in their own face, or any other slapstick effect you can think of.

Perhaps something that changes the game up a bit and makes critical misses exciting (but not too punishing) would be cool.
A bit of forced movement that reshuffles the tactics a bit could even keep a few battles from getting too stagnant.

Nice stuff. You've left me with something fun to think about. Smile
Its not even a house rule or anything like that, but part of the class features if you choose chaos. One of the things in general that I like is that my dm either applies some limited damage to the failing player or if there is an ally in melee range the attack is directed at them. (That forced movement can screw things up worse than you think by the way).