Why do people want the return of quadratic Wizards and linear Fighters?

I realize that 3.0 and 3.5 have their merits, as well as the other editions, but I cannot fathom this. Why would people want to see this return? It makes martial characters complete deadweights at high levels, and spellcasters become demigods themselves. It's just bad game design. Now, I can understand we didn't have 4e and all we knew were these archetypes, but we do have 4e, and it worked. I'm not saying that I didn't like the older editions, but they had some serious problems with the power curve of several classes. 4e fixed most of this, and while it had a whole new set of problems on it's own, this seems to me like something that should be included in D&D 5e, not subtracted because people miss fighters and rogues sucking. And heck, it's not even as if wizards got a downgrade in 4e! 4e just made it so martial characters can do multitudes of things that can make them compete with what tools the wizard could bring to the table.

Please, for anyone who is in favor of this regression, could you give me a decent reason why this should be implemented in 5e?
I realize that 3.0 and 3.5 have their merits, as well as the other editions, but I cannot fathom this. Why would people want to see this return? It makes martial characters complete deadweights at high levels, and spellcasters become demigods themselves. It's just bad game design. Now, I can understand we didn't have 4e and all we knew were these archetypes, but we do have 4e, and it worked. I'm not saying that I didn't like the older editions, but they had some serious problems with the power curve of several classes. 4e fixed most of this, and while it had a whole new set of problems on it's own, this seems to me like something that should be included in D&D 5e, not subtracted because people miss fighters and rogues sucking. And heck, it's not even as if wizards got a downgrade in 4e! 4e just made it so martial characters can do multitudes of things that can make them compete with what tools the wizard could bring to the table.

Please, for anyone who is in favor of this regression, could you give me a decent reason why this should be implemented in 5e?


Because it's MAGIC

Having spellcasters and non-spellcasters be equivalent in power/options and fun is not realistic

Having fighters be equivalent to wizards is not fun

I dunno I've seen a lot of reasons based on the above theories and all of them are hogwash imo.

If you want a game where some of the people are heroes (wizards)  and some are henchmen (fighters) play ars magica or mage the ascension
Personal taste.  
It's the game they want to play.

And it really only breaks the game at the high levels few groups get to or play at. 

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i think the reason being, and one of my players paraphrases this very often, is that wizards in 4e did not feel like wizards at all.

classical wizard players liked having spell books and choices EVERY day to make.
they liked their choices to be important. and thus, they expected to be rewarded for good choices made in the morning, and punished for bad ones. (well, some of them, anyway). it has less to do with how much you can cast at level advancement, than rather getting more and more options to choose from - on a daily basis, not on level up.

i guess most wizards could live with other classes having other mechanics and getting more than linear options, or at least getting choices and options - but that their casting was so greatly nerfed, damaged the game most for them.

in contrast, many players would not like having to choose every day, or even choose that much at level up. i believe the big mistake of older editions was to force this kind of play on fighters, and the difficult one on spellcasters, tome of battle adressed this pretty well.

in my experience, players do not choose classes on how complicated they are, but on what they want to play. thus, there needs to be a difficult and easy class for every "fluff" a player might like to play.
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56767308 wrote:
Sadly, I don't think this has anything to do with wanting Next to be a great game. It has to do with wanting Next to determine who won the Edition War. [...] For those of us who just want D&D Next to be a good game, this is getting to be a real drag.
57870548 wrote:
I think I figured it out. This program is a character builder, not a character builder. It teaches patience, empathy, and tolerance. All most excellent character traits.
Most people seem to want wizards and fighters to be relatively balanced at all levels of play. Honestly I don't think there's much argument on that point. Even people who don't mind wizards being overpowered at high levels will usually admit that they also don't mind if wizards and fighters are on a more equal footing at high levels.

  Mind you, this is entirely independent of the Vancian magic/spell slot thing. DDN can use spell slots and not make wizards overpowered at high levels, they just need to place appropriate limits on how powerful spells can be at various stages, how many spell slots are available and appropriate limits on how much (if any) automatic scaling occurs on spells by experience level. It's not the idea of spell slots that's broken, it's how its implemented in 3e and earlier editions.
Where to begin. 

For one.  4th ed took it way to far in the opposite direction.  I found mages had become the least powerful character and that my armour wearing divine Invoker was better in every single way.

Moreso, the lore of almost every fantasy book written suggests that mages are the go-to guys for power plays.  The fighters have their role and are quite often pivotal for cleaning up the lesser threats so the mage can save his spells, but then they are the most needed characters for the end of session bad guy.

They are weak and easy to hit which is why the fighters remain important.  It should become a team effort with the fighters defending and the mages striking.   Also, it is a roleplaying game.  Why does your character need to do the same damage to the same amount of enemies as everyone else?  Fighters are effective for the 1st half of the game and mages begin to shine later on.  Quite often most campaigns tend to stop around level 7-10 so by in large the super powerful mages are a rare comodity around the DnD table anyway.

And it really only breaks the game at the high levels few groups get to or play at. 



This may have something to do with it.  I know that the vast majority of games I've played since 1990 have ended before level 15, and only a few of those actually made it past level 10.  So I never really saw a whole lot of the LFQW problem, except for at the low end where mages are slow burners.

My personal thought is that the issue should be handled(and I may house rule this regardless) by two parallel actions:

1)  There is no "general" wizard.  Specialists only, and with much more restricted lists than 3E and prior.  Make them work differently.  For example, an evoker might seem more effective than a diviner at first glance, but the diviner has more out of combat utility, while maintaining viablity in combat through precognition.  He would be able to manipulate advantage/disadvantage states when forced into personal combat.  Additionally, you could use themes to facilitate these limitations while giving the character additional flair.  

2)  This will be unpopular for 4E fans, but I think the fighter needs to kill the warlord and take his stuff.  A combat specialist that can engage enemies in single combat, utilize various combat maneuvers, and lead groups to victory through his superior grasp of tactics would be a better match for a wizard that "my guy in the heavy armor attacks...  again."


@Bodyknock I agree

I am a strong supporter of 3.0/3.5, and I will admit the class balance on that game was super broken, and aside from all the things that 4th edition did that I didn't like, they did get balance right, but in a very lazy way imo. I would like it if all the classes were equally good to play in their own way. I think the fighter should be the best or nearly the best in combat, particularly one on one melee combat (ranger might be better at range, and caster might be better on mass on one). I would like a fighter that deals out buckets of damages with a sword, and can really take a hit and keep coming. I would like them to have access to some thing like ToB with stances and something like maneuvers. The one thing I do not want for the fighter is the daily powers that are any thing like spell slots, and they shouldn't have mystical powers like desert wind school by default (unless its like a theme or background that gives them access to it to make a sword-mage, then by all means have at it), they should have real world-esque abilities, it would also be cool if their weapon choice could give them different abilities, but I digress. Ideally I think one on one at 20th level, a wizard and a fighter should be a tough fight, unless the wizard had planning on his side or the other way around.
They don't see it as a problem, and the steps taken to fix that problem they didn't have made for an edition they didn't like.

Where to begin. 

For one.  4th ed took it way to far in the opposite direction.  I found mages had become the least powerful character and that my armour wearing divine Invoker was better in every single way.

Moreso, the lore of almost every fantasy book written suggests that mages are the go-to guys for power plays.  The fighters have their role and are quite often pivotal for cleaning up the lesser threats so the mage can save his spells, but then they are the most needed characters for the end of session bad guy.

They are weak and easy to hit which is why the fighters remain important.  It should become a team effort with the fighters defending and the mages striking.   Also, it is a roleplaying game.  Why does your character need to do the same damage to the same amount of enemies as everyone else?  Fighters are effective for the 1st half of the game and mages begin to shine later on.  Quite often most campaigns tend to stop around level 7-10 so by in large the super powerful mages are a rare comodity around the DnD table anyway.


Plus, this guy exists. I have an endless well of hatred for this reasoning and approach to balance, and I'll sooner put my head in a car door and slam it until I can't feel the pain than play a game with these assumptions, but he probably feels the same way about how I play. Possibly sans the hyperbole about what he'd rather be doing.
They don't see it as a problem, and the steps taken to fix that problem they didn't have made for an edition they didn't like.

Where to begin. 

For one.  4th ed took it way to far in the opposite direction.  I found mages had become the least powerful character and that my armour wearing divine Invoker was better in every single way.

Moreso, the lore of almost every fantasy book written suggests that mages are the go-to guys for power plays.  The fighters have their role and are quite often pivotal for cleaning up the lesser threats so the mage can save his spells, but then they are the most needed characters for the end of session bad guy.

They are weak and easy to hit which is why the fighters remain important.  It should become a team effort with the fighters defending and the mages striking.   Also, it is a roleplaying game.  Why does your character need to do the same damage to the same amount of enemies as everyone else?  Fighters are effective for the 1st half of the game and mages begin to shine later on.  Quite often most campaigns tend to stop around level 7-10 so by in large the super powerful mages are a rare comodity around the DnD table anyway.


Plus, this guy exists. I have an endless well of hatred for this reasoning and approach to balance, and I'll sooner put my head in a car door and slam it until I can't feel the pain than play a game with these assumptions, but he probably feels the same way about how I play. Possibly sans the hyperbole about what he'd rather be doing.



Same. It's the "fighter is ok until the mage actually decides to do something" approach. Which is the complete opposite of balance.
...They are weak and easy to hit which is why the fighters remain important.  It should become a team effort with the fighters defending and the mages striking.   Also, it is a roleplaying game.  Why does your character need to do the same damage to the same amount of enemies as everyone else?  Fighters are effective for the 1st half of the game and mages begin to shine later on.  Quite often most campaigns tend to stop around level 7-10 so by in large the super powerful mages are a rare comodity around the DnD table anyway.



Just because most players only get to around level 7-10 doesn't mean the later levels should be wildly imbalanced. The game should be balanced at all levels of play so that no matter what class you're playing and what level you're playing you are having as much fun with your own character as other people are with theirs.

Mind you, I'm not saying damages have to be equal in all situations and fighters and wizards need to use identical game mechanics. I'm just saying that no matter what experience level you're at the wizards and fighters should be sharing roughly the same amount of the spotlight, having the same amount of fun and feeling they're a relatively useful and equal participant in an adventure overall. The fighter might shine more in some fights while the wizard shines more in others or shines more in out-of-combat situations than the fighter but the fighter kicks major butt in combats, etc. What shouldn't happen is what happens in 3e where, at high levels, the wizards are better in combat overall and way better outside of combat and are able to singlehandedly overcome many of the problems the parties face compared to what the fighter can help resolve.


So to sum up:

- Just because many players don't reach high levels doesn't mean high level play should be broken

- Ideally everyone should be having fun and feel like they're an equal participant over the course of a typical adventure regardless of class and experience level. The classes don't need to be equals in every single encounter and situation, but on average over an ordinary adventure they all should be roughly on par with each other.
I personally found fighters to consistently and more often deal out more damage then wizards at most levels of play in 3.5 .  Even at very high levels a full attacking fighters with PA and two handed weapons would often deal 100-150 damage a round .  Granted wizards could meteor swarm bunches of people they had to often deal with to hit rolls, spell reistance and saves.

  I say let the wizard be bad ass at highlevels he earned it. 

Fighters never run out of swings .

This is all from a 3.5 perspective . My 4th ed. playing is very little , but perfecting class parity is not a great thing imo. 
I personally found fighters to consistently and more often deal out more damage then wizards at most levels of play in 3.5 .  Even at very high levels a full attacking fighters with PA and two handed weapons would often deal 100-150 damage a round .  Granted wizards could meteor swarm bunches of people they had to often deal with to hit rolls, spell reistance and saves.

  I say let the wizard be bad ass at highlevels he earned it. 

Fighters never run out of swings .

This is all from a 3.5 perspective . My 4th ed. playing is very little , but perfecting class parity is not a great thing imo. 



 So, you're saying that the only time a fighter should be useful is when the mage runs out of spells.Wizards won't run out of spells at higher levels either. Especially when they have a near infinite source from scrolls, wands, etc.  The wizard didn't "earn" anything, either. Everyone earned it. Everyone should be able to contribute. The Fighter never runs out is swings is the problem here. His swings are meaningless unless the caster somehow manages to run out of resources. 

As far as damage goes, the spellcasters don't really care about damage anymore at those levels. They are so overloaded with I win buttons that damage is something that only the inferior classes need to worry about.

It's pure arrogance to want to outshine the other members of your party.  
Fighters never run out of swings



This doesn't matter at all sadly. When everyone else was smart enough to mvoe to casters and you stay with your Fighter going "Hah! You guys may need to rest, but I can go all day!". An idea that's moot when you realize, YOUR PARTY NEEDS TO REST TO RECHARGE THEIR SPELLS. WHich means your stuck resting with them because...

A)They're not going to budge until they get their spells recharged. Doing so would be idiotic on their end. They're not going to completely gimp themselves and risk getting killed while their our of spells just so you can pretend your important for one fight.

B)You're goign to have to stay put too, because the casters are likely the only reason you're not ground into paste right now, and going off to pick a fight by yourself is a stupid idea.

Moreso, the lore of almost every fantasy book written suggests that mages are the go-to guys for power plays.  The fighters have their role and are quite often pivotal for cleaning up the lesser threats so the mage can save his spells, but then they are the most needed characters for the end of session bad guy.



This is only true post-D&D. If you look at the classical fantasy, the reverse is true. Conan is the victor over Toth-Amon, Aragorn & Frodo are the victors over Sauron(Gandalf almost never uses his magic), King Arthur is the heavy(Merlin rarely uses his magic), Elric almost never uses his magic and it always has a heavy toll, Fafhrd and Gray Mouser are the heroes(not their patron warlocks who rarely do anything of value).

Can you back this statement up with something that presumably wasn't influenced by D&D?

As for the argument from realism - really? Your argument is that fictional powers are more realistic when they are more powerful than something that can be emulated in real life? Why can't fighters emulate their fantasy counterparts - Samson slew a hundred men with the jawbone of an ass, Conanis generally depicted as being surrounded by corpses, Sigurd single-handedly slays a dragon, Achilles absence turns the tide of the Trojan War(as does his return), Lancelot can slay a dozen knights in full armor while he himself is naked, etc., etc.

I don't care if wizards are very powerful, I just want the fighters to be able to match that power(or come pretty close). 
I personally found fighters to consistently and more often deal out more damage then wizards at most levels of play in 3.5 .  Even at very high levels a full attacking fighters with PA and two handed weapons would often deal 100-150 damage a round .  Granted wizards could meteor swarm bunches of people they had to often deal with to hit rolls, spell reistance and saves.

  I say let the wizard be bad ass at highlevels he earned it. 

Fighters never run out of swings .

This is all from a 3.5 perspective . My 4th ed. playing is very little , but perfecting class parity is not a great thing imo. 



If all casters ever did was deal direct damage, you'd be right. But if that was all they did, most caster players would be howling about how this wizard isn't a real wizard, and they want their 'real' spells back. At 17th level, you're not wasting a round on Meteor Swarm, you're using your high level slots on Shapechange, Time Stop, Greater Celerity, Wish, etc.


As for other posters saying Wizards are squishy and the Fighter's job is to sit on the front lines... The Wizards spells give him durability and defenses the fighter has no hope of matching. Getting HP isn't a problem for the Wizard, and it's actually EASIER for the Wizard to have high AC than the Fighter (because the fighter has to pay gold for every point of AC he gets past level 3 or so, the Wizard can get it from spells). But on top of matching the Fighter's defenses, he can also grant himself immunities to various negative status effects, resistances to energy attacks, damage reduction, etc, none of which the Fighter has any real access to. But then, if the Wizard still decides he wants something between him and the enemies, he can summon up all sorts of fun things, almost every one of which is going to be stronger and more durable than the Fighter, because the Fighter's scaling is so bad it doesn't just fail to keep up with the Wizard, it fails to keep up with melee brute monsters past level 10 or so.


Basically the Wizard isn't a badass because at high level he deals more damage than everyone else. I mean yeah, if he focuses on that, he probably can. But damage alone is a very small, insignificant portion of what the Wizard can do. What is basically necessary for  a fighter to remain competitive, if not still perfectly balanced:

-Enhanced mobility options. Low-Mid level fighters should be able to gain climb/swim speeds, mid-high level fighters should literally be able to burrow, fly and do tactical range teleports. It is actually more important for melee characters to have access to these things than the Wizard, because melee characters need to have the ability to close in melee with enemies that do have these capabilities, or he is incapable of doing his job.

-Enhanced Defensive Options. High AC and High HP is not enough to set the Fighter above anybody else. Monsters will almost always have access to more HP, and high AC won't ever be that high because they need to keep a set RNG. Fighters need access to damage reduction, resistances, immunities, spell resistance, and good saves.

-The ability to be a threat. A Fighter who isn't strong enough offensively on the battlefield to be a threat will be ignored. Now there's a dozen different ways the Fighter can be strong offensively, so rather than labeling one as the best and saying it needs to be done, I'm leaving this as general as possible. It could be 4e style marking with a potent mark violation mechanic, it could be reach weapons with crowd control, it could be Intimidation acting as mind control, it could be the Fighter just being that much of a badass all the enemies want to take him down right now before they die. Whatever. Point is there needs to be something in the offense area that makes the Fighters a serious threat.

-Out of combat utility. This is arguably the one place where the Fighter has always lacked. His class features always focus exclusively on combat. His skills get gimped to make the rogue more special. The fighter is left with nothing he can really do out of combat that he is actually going to be good at. I personally hope that the Background mechanic will work to give roles to out of combat in much the same way that the Theme mechanic gives roles in combat. 

-Some sort of resource management. Before someone jumps on me, yes daily fighter powers are stupid. Even 1/encounter powers are pretty dumb. This is not the only way you can have resource management. You can have say an endurance pool that works like psionic power points from 3.5 except refreshes by the encounter, that would count as a decent resource management system. You could do a combo system that unlocks higher tier special abilities. You could do a Rage/Fury system where your resource builds up as you fight, and gets used on special effects. Either way, the point is if a character has access to a lot of nice things, he needs some sort of limit how much he can access it. I don't think anyone wants a DDN Fighter who is just a 3.5 Wizard with all of his spells at will.  There does need to be a limitation, but you can include a limitation while still keeping it making sense.
Ultimately, I don't think we'll see a return of Quadratic Wizard/ Linear Fighter.

Frankly speaking, the developers of the game are way better at it nowadays than they were 30, 20, or even 10 years ago. They know that people will want to play their characters at every level with any playstyle they choose, be it smash-n-grab, sneak-n-stab, kneel-n-heal, or cast-n-blast. Fundamentally, if you don't cater to those people, they're less likely to enjoy the game, and therefore they're less likely to buy the game. It's a bad buisness decision, and won't happen, in addition to being fundamentally bad design.
I think the title of this post is off...

I was going to say that few people are defending the quadratic wizard from any edition.  5e definitely is not using that concept.   But I read quadratic to mean the spells get stronger with caster level.  So magic missiles increase as the wizard advances.   I'm assuming none of that is going to happen and I haven't seen any riots in any camp over this.


What is being discussed here is relative class power balance.   I'm in theory in favor of balance but I've only seen one shot taken at it and for me that didn't work.  I'm open to other ideas because again I'm not anti-balance.   I am anti the approach taken by 4e.

I also don't in theory have an issue with a class that is big boom only occasionally and weak at other times.   The five minute work day is not permitted in our campaigns.   And the occasional times where story wise it makes sense, is no big deal.   There are definite other times where rest is really hard to get and the group has to push on with wizards running on fumes.

Keep in mind folks that I am against magic mart and easy magic item creation.  Perhaps if you considered removing those things you might find reining in the wizard a bit easier without actually touching the wizard.

 
I think the title of this post is off...

I was going to say that few people are defending the quadratic wizard from any edition.  5e definitely is not using that concept.   But I read quadratic to mean the spells get stronger with caster level.  So magic missiles increase as the wizard advances.   I'm assuming none of that is going to happen and I haven't seen any riots in any camp over this.



Caster level scaling has little to do with it. Quadratic Wizards come from casters growing quadratically. As they level they are both getting more spell slots and stronger tricks. At level 1 a Wizard has 3 pretty weak tricks. By level 3, he's up to 6 of them. By level 20, he's got 40-50 of them, and most of them are significantly stronger/more versatile than any sword strike.

I also don't in theory have an issue with a class that is big boom only occasionally and weak at other times.   The five minute work day is not permitted in our campaigns.   And the occasional times where story wise it makes sense, is no big deal.   There are definite other times where rest is really hard to get and the group has to push on with wizards running on fumes.

Keep in mind folks that I am against magic mart and easy magic item creation.  Perhaps if you considered removing those things you might find reining in the wizard a bit easier without actually touching the wizard.



So if you remove magic mart/item creation, how are you managing these long work days? How are you convincing the party to keep adventuring when they have low hit points, and the cleric has no healing spells? In 3.5 the answer is "Buy wands of lesser vigor and go", but no magic mart says this isn't an option. So the other option is "Rest when the Cleric needs more juice so we don't all die"

And seriously? Mundanes with no access to magic of their own are FAR more reliant on magic items than any wizard ever was. Shutting down magic mart doesn't hurt the Wizard. He still has all of his spells, which are the real problem. No, what you've done is gimped the Fighter out of getting his Wings of Flying, boots of teleportation, cloak of resistance, animated shield, etc etc. 
As others have kind of hinted at, part of the reason why mages are quadratic is that their spells increase in effectiveness as well as them getting more spells.

A 10th level fighter has more feats and more attack bonus than his 5th level counterpart.  His individual feats don't actually do anything more than when he first got them, they have not grown in effectiveness and its likely some of them are LESS effective against level appropriate opposition than before.

The 10th level wizard has both more spells and higher level spells.  If he only had that he would also be linear.  However, EVERY spell the wizard has also has longer duration, better range, and most spells scale internally as well.  Every attack spell is better as you level etc. 

If wizards had fairly straight forward linear scaling it would help the game alot.  This was one of the things 4E did, but it also got rid of vancian casting completely.

Next at least SEEMS address this somewhat without getting rid of vancian casting by NOT having spells scale up to level. 

This still does not adress the facts that linear fighter still can't do much outside of combat like the wizard who can solve every element of the game by proper spell selection.  However, at least the fighter would seem to remain combat relevant in next.

Also, as a person who really liked 4E I actually think that making the fighter more like the warlord is an excellent idea.  There may not be enough conceptual space for them to be different.  Also, the cleric in 3.x/3.5 was a better combatant than the fighter at pretty much every level.  Merging the fighter and warlord would offer the opportunity to make a character as effective as the cleric both in an out of combat.

Frankly speaking, the developers of the game are way better at it nowadays than they were 30, 20, or even 10 years ago.


Except, many of them were not there for the full ride. Some worked on one earlier edition, but that's about it.
=> Thus it is a flawed assumption, that they know their way around the ups and downs around the design of all the editions of the past 30 years. Even more than this assumption is flawed anyway.

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56767308 wrote:
Sadly, I don't think this has anything to do with wanting Next to be a great game. It has to do with wanting Next to determine who won the Edition War. [...] For those of us who just want D&D Next to be a good game, this is getting to be a real drag.
57870548 wrote:
I think I figured it out. This program is a character builder, not a character builder. It teaches patience, empathy, and tolerance. All most excellent character traits.
There's some wizard players out there who want to be the centre of the story while their fighter henchmen carry their spellbooks around. That's why these people want the return of quadratic wizards and linear fighters.
I don't want a linear fighter, but I also don't agree with what was done in 4th edition to the fighter. Mechanically, he played very similarly to the wizard. Actually, every class played similarly to the wizard. However, I found trying to explain why certain martial techniques could only be used once per day was making it hard to work with from a narrative perspective. Especially when there isn't any reasonable explanation as to why the player can't perform the attack again. What I want is an interesting fighter that can perform a variety of attacks in combat, but still feel like the techniques are realistic enough (in a fantasy sense) to fit into a story without disbelief. Encounter powers make sense, since one could say that he expends a great deal of energy executing the technique and needs to catch his breath before executing it again. Once per day techniques bring up the real question of "if this technique is so tiring that he can only perform it once per day, how is he still standing?"
I don't want a linear fighter, but I also don't agree with what was done in 4th edition to the fighter. Mechanically, he played very similarly to the wizard. Actually, every class played similarly to the wizard. However, I found trying to explain why certain martial techniques could only be used once per day was making it hard to work with from a narrative perspective. Especially when there isn't any reasonable explanation as to why the player can't perform the attack again. What I want is an interesting fighter that can perform a variety of attacks in combat, but still feel like the techniques are realistic enough (in a fantasy sense) to fit into a story without disbelief. Encounter powers make sense, since one could say that he expends a great deal of energy executing the technique and needs to catch his breath before executing it again.



The thing is, 3e is loaded with martial dailies as well. They're just not called "dailies". It's nothing new to D&D. Look through 3e and tell me how many feats and class features carry the x/day mechanic.

It's very simple. Combat is not take a swing and then stand around waiting for them to attack you back. It's finding weaknesses and taking advantage of a situation. Saying the knockout blow only comes up once in a 2 minute window (roughly the amount of time spent in combat per day) of a 24 hour day is perfectly reasonable. 
i think the reason being, and one of my players paraphrases this very often, is that wizards in 4e did not feel like wizards at all.

classical wizard players liked having spell books and choices EVERY day to make.
they liked their choices to be important. and thus, they expected to be rewarded for good choices made in the morning, and punished for bad ones. (well, some of them, anyway). it has less to do with how much you can cast at level advancement, than rather getting more and more options to choose from - on a daily basis, not on level up.



Except...4E wizards DID play like wizards. They had big, splashy dailies and encounter powers that control large portions of the battlefield at once, they were the class that could switch out their dailies and even encounter powers each day, to tailor their spells for a given situation (sometimes even switching the spells out on the fly to limited effect). They were the class that was best at rituals (getting it free, and having the right stat and ability to train in the two most valuable skills, Arcana and Religion, giving them the highest scores in both of those skills), which gave them an absolutely ENORMOUS amount of out of combat stuff they could do that was highly magical in nature, and that they could do without major (or even minor) investment in feats and off-stats, unlike most everyone else. They could expand their spellbook to hold even more spells, and could carry tomes to switch out to even MORE spells beyond those, further expanding the amount of magic they knew.

No other class in 4E could switch out ALL of their daily spells every day if they want. So...why didn't they feel like wizards? They had big, flashy effects, access to battlefield altering powers, powerful out of combat abilities they were better at than anyone else, and could tailor their spells to suit their whims or needs. What isn't wizardly about that, when compared to previous editions?

In talking with fellow older players (I'm pretty sure playing D&D for 30 years qualifies me as an "older player" as well), it all boiled down to precisely what the OP said. Wizards felt like "wizards" to them because their powers were godlike compared to the non-casters. Literally godlike. A fighter could make powerful attacks. A wizard could utterly destroy a city block with a spell, or even an entire city. That's...just ridiculous, sorry. That's only truly fun for the wizard (or similar casters). 

I loved playing wizards and other casters back in the day, and I also love DMing. But you know what? When I objectively looked back on those days, my character, or the other caster-types in the parties really did hog the spotlight ALL THE TIME, and the DM really did have to account for what WE were capable of ALL THE TIME, and radically adjust the entire game just to accomodate the immense amount of content we could royalls screw up or bypass. A small percentage of the party required almost all of the DM's time and energy during both gameplay and adventure creation, and the overwhelming majority of all adjudication involved a caster doing something. As DM, the same story, I HAD to account for the casters, or the adventure would derail in negative ways pretty much all the time, every session. Casters made my job as DM exponentially harder as they leveled.


I laughed so hard it hurt when I saw the argument that "most players don't get to high levels so they don't need to be balanced". That high level play was imbalanced is precisely the reason most campaigns didn't reach high levels. The casters became capable of literally bending reality to their will and the DM said "Uh...I don't know how to handle this, time for a new campaign". The casters were disappointing by this of course, but all the non-casters at the table jumped on the idea. At least that's how it always played out at my table.
I keep reading all of these threads and I keep thinking the same things over and over and over. 

So, having finally decided to post something, I'll leave the following list:

1.)  If your party is able to constantly "stop and rest" any time a caster runs low on spells, your DM is, imo, doing something awfully wrong.  On that same note, the encounters need to be tailored to the party.  I remember fondly tanking some golems on my fighter that would have quickly found our casters a red stain underfoot.  Monsters that "eat" prepared spells?  Have fun with that.  Immune to magic?  Fighting in a hallway where casting Fireball, Meteor Swarm, etc would hit ally and foe alike?  On the flip side, monsters that ignore armor?  Monsters that disarm?  Etc Etc  If the DM can't find a way to engage/challenge everyone, s/he is doing something wrong.

2.)  When anyone says, "Players want this!" (like in the OP), please don't speak for me.  Your desires do not match mine.  A lot of the ideas being thrown around sound like munchkin powergaming to me.  You know why I don't care that the wizard can cast Meteor Swarm and I get my 5 attacks a round?  Because this is my story and my character.  This isn't an MMO, we don't have damage meters.  The party is defeating the Big Bad Monster.  We are saving the town.  We are conquering this castle. 
Whenever I think 3e or earlier wizard, I think "hog the spotlight". Even if the fighter has taken all kinds of feats for fancy manuevers or the such, the wizard still outshines him almost everytime.

It seems the people who complain about 4e wizards are sad that they can't neccesarily be the best in the party anymore -- they are pretty much on equal footing with everyone else. Because the 4e wizard still felt very much like a wizard, with the spellbooks and spell swapping and battlefield control.

Your friendly neighborhood Revenant Minotaur Half-Blooded Dragonborn Fighter Hybrid Barbarian Multiclassing into Warlord

IMAGE(http://pwp.wizards.com/1223957875/Scorecards/Landscape.png)

No other class in 4E could switch out ALL of their daily spells every day if they want. So...why didn't they feel like wizards? They had big, flashy effects, access to battlefield altering powers, powerful out of combat abilities they were better at than anyone else, and could tailor their spells to suit their whims or needs. What isn't wizardly about that, when compared to previous editions?


Having two daily options per slot instead of one (and just three slots) is, you've got to admit, a pretty barren choice pool compared to previous editions when they might have had five or six spells per level in their book and they could prepare them into their slots in any combination.  Plus 3e gave them metamagic.  Please don't try to pretend that the 4e system was just as flexible as before.

And I think you and several other posters on this thread have overlooked an important distinction between this flexibility and power.  Note that WotC have explicitly removed automatic scaling from spells, the main culprits for wizards going quadratic:  increasing number of spells times increasing power per spell is the quadratic function referred to in the standard "linear fighters quadratic wizards" complaint.  And I can't speak for all fans of old-school wizards - I'm sure there are some out there who really did just like being imbalanced spotlight hogs - but for me, at least, I'm perfectly fine with bringing wizards closer to linear this way.  I don't care about the power (as long as the class isn't underpowered); I just want the flexibility back.  I don't want to make three either-or choices in the morning; I want to feel like I'm making a real plan for the day.

After all, I also play barbarians and fighters and rogues and rangers.  And when I play one of those, I don't want to feel overshadowed by a wizard.  But that doesn't mean I want the supposed master of magic to have a mere handful of spells in his spellbook.

(As a side note:  no class is, or ought to be, actually linear.  Whether you're a fighter or a wizard, the capabilities you get at 20th level should be more powerful and more exciting than the capabilities you get at 1st level.  And that requires some sort of curve.  Unfortunately, this principle does make multiclassing hard to balance.)
You know why I don't care that the wizard can cast Meteor Swarm and I get my 5 attacks a round?  Because this is my story and my character.  This isn't an MMO, we don't have damage meters.  The party is defeating the Big Bad Monster.  We are saving the town.  We are conquering this castle. 



But quite often with the power level discrepancy, that was simply not the case. As both DM and player, I've watched a wizard or other caster end the combat and defeat all the monsters all by themselves. The other characters quite literally didn't have to be there at all. That same caster is the one who detects the secret doors with magic when the others fail with checks (the other characters didn't actually need to be there, the caster could have done that first, no problem). Where the caster is the one who single-handedly sneaks into the castle, gets the critical information, sneaks back out, polymorphed as a rat the whole time. The caster who charms the high-ranking dignitary and uses that to set in motion nation-altering plans or for personal gain. All the same character, mind you, sometimes all in the same session. The non-casters were along for the ride. 

It often DIDN'T boil down to "we", but rather, "does the caster feel like holding back big time and allowing the other characters to participate, or does she solve the problem with magic...again.". When one character, or a couple (the wizard and the druid together) could take care of any problems, easily at that, and has to ALLOW the other characters to appear to be valuable to the party, something is very, very wrong with the system. Shrug.

Except...4E wizards DID play like wizards. They had big, splashy dailies and encounter powers that control large portions of the battlefield at once,[...]



Except, that in reality, a good wizard, did not just "control the battle field". He just evaporated or bypassed almost anything in his way, and if need be, used his lackeys for that (read: the other players of the party). Or, if he had not reached the magical uber-level of his edition, he would throw darts or daggers with almost no chance to hit after using some minor spells.

Big splashy spells? They are just for show, once you had memorized the important stuff.
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56767308 wrote:
Sadly, I don't think this has anything to do with wanting Next to be a great game. It has to do with wanting Next to determine who won the Edition War. [...] For those of us who just want D&D Next to be a good game, this is getting to be a real drag.
57870548 wrote:
I think I figured it out. This program is a character builder, not a character builder. It teaches patience, empathy, and tolerance. All most excellent character traits.
Except...4E wizards DID play like wizards. They had big, splashy dailies and encounter powers that control large portions of the battlefield at once,[...]



Except, that in reality, a good wizard, did not just "control the battle field". He just evaporated or bypassed almost anything in his way, and if need be, used his lackeys for that (read: the other players of the party). Or, if he had not reached the magical uber-level of his edition, he would throw darts or daggers with almost no chance to hit after using some minor spells.

Big splashy spells? They are just for show, once you had memorized the important stuff.


This is exactly the problem. A class should not be so overpowered such that the other people of the group don't even have to be there to accomplish the adventure. If you're a one-man show, what's the point of playing with others -- the whole basis of DnD?

Your friendly neighborhood Revenant Minotaur Half-Blooded Dragonborn Fighter Hybrid Barbarian Multiclassing into Warlord

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If your party is able to constantly "stop and rest" any time a caster runs low on spells, your DM is, imo, doing something awfully wrong.


Idk, I'd find it pretty immersion breaking if we're not allowed to stop for 5 minutes because we're always on some arbirtrary time limit just so the catsers don't ruint he game for everyone again. And not everyone wants to play "rush everywhere:the game"
If your party is able to constantly "stop and rest" any time a caster runs low on spells, your DM is, imo, doing something awfully wrong.


Idk, I'd find it pretty immersion breaking if we're not allowed to stop for 5 minutes because we're always on some arbirtrary time limit just so the catsers don't ruint he game for everyone again. And not everyone wants to play "rush everywhere:the game"


He seems to be referring to full-day rests, not five-minute rests.

When I DM, I like to mix it up.  Sometimes the party has pretty tight time restraints and they need to husband their daily resources carefully.  Sometimes they've got more time to spare, and they can just go crazy.  Both are fun.
..."window.parent.tinyMCE.get('post_content').onLoad.dispatch();" contenteditable="true" />But quite often with the power level discrepancy, that was simply not the case. As both DM and player, I've watched a wizard or other caster end the combat and defeat all the monsters all by themselves. The other characters quite literally didn't have to be there at all. That same caster is the one who detects the secret doors with magic when the others fail with checks (the other characters didn't actually need to be there, the caster could have done that first, no problem). Where the caster is the one who single-handedly sneaks into the castle, gets the critical information, sneaks back out, polymorphed as a rat the whole time. The caster who charms the high-ranking dignitary and uses that to set in motion nation-altering plans or for personal gain. All the same character, mind you, sometimes all in the same session. The non-casters were along for the ride. 

It often DIDN'T boil down to "we", but rather, "does the caster feel like holding back big time and allowing the other characters to participate, or does she solve the problem with magic...again.". When one character, or a couple (the wizard and the druid together) could take care of any problems, easily at that, and has to ALLOW the other characters to appear to be valuable to the party, something is very, very wrong with the system. Shrug.




Please see point #1 in my post.

If your DM (you/whomever) is letting one player have such a presence they are doing something terribly wrong.  You can't solve everything with magic.  If the DM lets that statement be false, they are doing their other players a disservice.   

You know how that would have worked in my game?

"As you approach the gate to the castle, your rat-self senses something.  Roll a (whatever) check!  You notice sigils enscribed around the edges of the gate.  They appear to be magical in nature."
I realize that 3.0 and 3.5 have their merits, as well as the other editions, but I cannot fathom this. Why would people want to see this return? It makes martial characters complete deadweights at high levels, and spellcasters become demigods themselves. It's just bad game design. Now, I can understand we didn't have 4e and all we knew were these archetypes, but we do have 4e, and it worked. I'm not saying that I didn't like the older editions, but they had some serious problems with the power curve of several classes. 4e fixed most of this, and while it had a whole new set of problems on it's own, this seems to me like something that should be included in D&D 5e, not subtracted because people miss fighters and rogues sucking. And heck, it's not even as if wizards got a downgrade in 4e! 4e just made it so martial characters can do multitudes of things that can make them compete with what tools the wizard could bring to the table.

Please, for anyone who is in favor of this regression, could you give me a decent reason why this should be implemented in 5e?



Since neither quadratic wizards nor linear fighters are returning, I don't see the point of this thread.
The funny thing about arbitrary time limits is that they are just that. Arbitrary. They only sere to reign in the caster. If you had a group of all martial characters in 3e you could not use arbitrary time limits at all. It took weeks to heal after a fight and travel without magic took many times longer. So yes a DM can impose arbitrary time limits, but don't fool yourself into thinking it is serving any purpose other than to help balance shoddy game design.
If your DM (you/whomever) is letting one player have such a presence they are doing something terribly wrong.  You can't solve everything with magic.  If the DM lets that statement be false, they are doing their other players a disservice.


To be fair, it is possible for a game system to make it easier or harder for a DM to make that mistake.  I would like to see this edition written so that even a completely inexperienced group can pick it up and have fun with it at every level.  This means giving DMs a lot more advice and support on how to run balanced adventures and shift the spotlight around gracefully than we have seen in previous editions.

The funny thing about arbitrary time limits is that they are just that. Arbitrary. They only sere to reign in the caster. If you had a group of all martial characters in 3e you could not use arbitrary time limits at all. It took weeks to heal after a fight and travel without magic took many times longer. So yes a DM can impose arbitrary time limits, but don't fool yourself into thinking it is serving any purpose other than to help balance shoddy game design.


It's "arbitrary" that sometimes bad things will happen if the PCs sit around for too long?  I prefer to think if it as "running the campaign in a dynamic world".  And as for your point about martial parties, of course you could run the campaign giving them time limits.  Of course you shouldn't give them time limits they would be unable to beat, but that's just a corollary of the fundamental DMing rule that you shouldn't run impossible adventures.
The funny thing about arbitrary time limits is that they are just that. Arbitrary. They only sere to reign in the caster. If you had a group of all martial characters in 3e you could not use arbitrary time limits at all. It took weeks to heal after a fight and travel without magic took many times longer. So yes a DM can impose arbitrary time limits, but don't fool yourself into thinking it is serving any purpose other than to help balance shoddy game design.



Bullocks

Please find me one example from any fantasy novel that does not use time as a plot device at any point.  This isn't a video game.  The bad guys don't sit around waiting for the good guys.
I keep reading all of these threads and I keep thinking the same things over and over and over. 

So, having finally decided to post something, I'll leave the following list:


I hope you come back and check on it.  There is nothing here that we haven't seen before.
1.)  If your party is able to constantly "stop and rest" any time a caster runs low on spells, your DM is, imo, doing something awfully wrong.

If your DM is constantly having to work in reasons why it might not be a good idea to stop and rest, thus limiting the types of adventures he can run to a small subset, all to enforce a class balance that should have just been in the rules already, how is this not a system problem?
On that same note, the encounters need to be tailored to the party.  I remember fondly tanking some golems on my fighter that would have quickly found our casters a red stain underfoot.

I remember spell immune monsters, in particular stone golems, being an absolute joke.  My 3.5e dm tried to send some at us thinking it would shut down the spells, but really, the druid was still the most valuable member of the party in that fight, by a wiiiiiide margin.    
Monsters that "eat" prepared spells?  Have fun with that.

That sounds fun. Like the DM not so subtly slapping you for daring to think casters were cool in a system where they're overpowered.
Immune to magic?

Is a sick joke, sorry.  
Fighting in a hallway where casting Fireball, Meteor Swarm, etc would hit ally and foe alike?

Who needs fireball and meteor swarm?  Damage is a chump's game in 3.5.  Why not just summon some monsters to either side of them and turn the hallway into a  pincer trap?  Or stone to mud to cave the ceiling in on them?
On the flip side, monsters that ignore armor?  Monsters that disarm?  Etc Etc

These on the other hand, these actually pose a threat to the fighter.
If the DM can't find a way to engage/challenge everyone, s/he is doing something wrong.

Or s/he's playing in a game where finding that is incredibly difficult, because non-casters were designed around the idea of semi-realistic medieval combatants and casters were designed around "Hey, you know what'd be a cool spell?"

2.)  When anyone says, "Players want this!" (like in the OP), please don't speak for me.  Your desires do not match mine.  A lot of the ideas being thrown around sound like munchkin powergaming to me.  You know why I don't care that the wizard can cast Meteor Swarm and I get my 5 attacks a round?  Because this is my story and my character.  This isn't an MMO, we don't have damage meters.  The party is defeating the Big Bad Monster.  We are saving the town.  We are conquering this castle. 

Ahhhhhhhahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahah!!!

Sorry, I had to get that out.  Munchkin powergaming?  By asking for balance?  Balance is the antithesis of munchkin powergaming.  If we were looking for the best setup to get some munchkin powergaming going, we'd cheer for quadratic wizards/linear fighters as hard as we could, because the casters in that system would be stronger than anything in a balanced game.  Quadratic wizards/linear fighters is a munchkin paradise.

Seriously, though, you should check out the PbP Haven. You might also like Real Adventures, IF you're cool.
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I remember spell immune monsters, in particular stone golems, being an absolute joke.  My 3.5e dm tried to send some at us thinking it would shut down the spells, but really, the druid was still the most valuable member of the party in that fight, by a wiiiiiide margin.


This was a particular problem of 3e that there were so many magical ways to get around spell immunity that it might as well not have been there.  It is distinct from the general issue of powerful spells and the equally-distinct issue of daily resource management.

That said, spell-immune monsters are bad game design when they do function as intended because they screw over the wizard completely.  Just like un-sneak-attackable monsters are bad game design because they screw over the rogue.  Nobody should feel useless in a fight.  Everybody should be able to contribute with approximately the same effect on average.  (This does not mean that spellcasters should have an old-school resource management system, just that the resources they manage with that system should be better balanced.)
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