Problematic Magic Items

There are a number of problematic items in the Magic Item document:
Minor Properties: Guardian. Initiative is universally good in combat. One minor property shouldn't be better than any other. Also, should be a named bonus to prevent potential future item-bonus stacking. As should almost any bonus.

Ethereal Plate: Weighs as much as cotton. What interaction does that have with spells, movement, etc...why is cotton restrictive(or not)?

Boots of Elvenkind: What does making no sound as you move mean? It sounds as if it ought to be granting Advantage on Stealth checks(and thereby negating Disadvantage for Plate)

Advantage is +5 to saves on average - a few items grant this across all saves. This is amazing. And yet no items give simple small bonuses to saves against specific categories.

Dancing Sword. Multiattacking. Almost strictly better than any other magic weapon because of this. Rare.
Keen Rapier. +2d6 that happens 1/10 times is essentially a +1 to damage. Also Rare. Notice the rather large difference in power?

Ring of Invisibility vs. Cloak of Invisibility. 2 hours of always on Invisibility is almost always going to trump the ability to use at will at the cost of an action.

Boots of Speed are basically double speed of movement in combat at-will.

Gauntlets of Ogre Power/Belt of Giant Strength are essential items due to their relative non-rarity and huge bonuses to hit/damage that are always on. They really stack with Dancing Sword.

Ioun Stones have a minimal benefit compared to Belts of Giant Strength.

Rod of Absorption allows conversion of spells into many spells or vice-versa. It also allows spontaneous casting of all prepared spells. There are some very, very problematic uses of this for Vancian casters when there are signature spells. Example: Fred hands Barney the Rod of Absorbtion every 5 minutes and casts his signature spell at him. He then takes the Rod back. 5 minutes later, he gets his signature spell back and has an extra spell to cast as well. Repeat until Rod of Absorption is fully charged and then wade into battle casting 2-4 extra full-blown daily spells.

The cost of non-magical Mithral Chain, Dragon Scale, and Plate armor is 5000 gold. Magical Mithral Chain, Dragon Scale, and Plate armor are all Very Rare. Which is valued at 2000-5000 gold.

NETH4-1 Containing Shadow (co-author)


Its not just the magic items themselves its how they tell you to give them out:

"That said, magic item rarity shouldn't get in the way of your storytelling. If you allow a vorpal longsword or a ring of invisibility to fall into the hands of a 1st-level character, then so be it. It's not the end of the world and might, in fact, be a significant feature of your campaign"

"You should note however that the mechanical benefits of such an item could prove to derail your adventure's or campaigns because their power level is reflected in the rarity and could cause some problems in your campaign. If you accidentally give too powerful an item to a character, there are ways to handle it ...."

Well that second part is wishful thinking. Go ahead give me a ring of invisibility and a vorpal longsword at 1st level and see if I don't destroy your campaign...Smile

Minor quirks are almost entirely story based except for the last few. Those few are highly mechanical and don't balance with the others.

The Vorpal Sword means instant death to just about anything 2.5% of the time, the rest of the time it just gets hurt really really bad...Smile
"Unite the [fan] base? Hardly. As of right now, I doubt their ability to unite a slightly unruly teabag with a cup of water."--anjelika
1-4E play style
The 4E play style is a high action cinematic style of play where characters worry less about being killed in one hit and more about strategy and what their next move is and the one after it. The players talk back and forth about planning a battle and who can do what to influence the outcome. 4E play is filled with cinematic over the top action. An Eladrin teleports out of the grip of the Ogre. The Fighter slams the dragons foot with his hammer causing it to rear up and stagger back in pain. The Cleric creates a holy zone where their allies weapons are guided to their targets and whenever an enemy dies the Clerics allies are healed. 4E is about knowing when to lauch your nova attack, whether its a huge arcane spell that causes enemies to whirl around in a chaotic storm, or if its a trained adrenaline surge that causes you to attack many many times with two weapons on a single target, or a surge of adrenaline that keeps you going though you should already be dead. Its about tactics and the inability to carry around a bag of potions or a few wands and never have to worry about healing. Its about the guy that can barely role play having the same chance to convince the king to aid the group as the guy that takes improv acting classes and regularly stars as an extra on movies.
Stormwind Fallacy
The Stormwind Fallacy, aka the Roleplayer vs Rollplayer Fallacy Just because one optimizes his characters mechanically does not mean that they cannot also roleplay, and vice versa. Corollary: Doing one in a game does not preclude, nor infringe upon, the ability to do the other in the same game. Generalization 1: One is not automatically a worse role player if he optimizes, and vice versa. Generalization 2: A non-optimized character is not automatically role played better than an optimized one, and vice versa. ...[aside]... Proof: These two elements rely on different aspects of a player's game play. Optimization factors in to how well one understands the rules and handles synergies to produce a very effective end result. Role playing deals with how well a player can act in character and behave as if he was someone else. A person can act while understanding the rules, and can build something powerful while still handling an effective character. There is nothing in the game -- mechanical or otherwise -- restricting one if you participate in the other. Claiming that an optimizer cannot role play (or is participating in a play style that isn't supportive of role playing) because he is an optimizer, or vice versa, is committing the Stormwind Fallacy.
The spells we should getLook here to Check out my adventures and ideas. I've started a blog, about video games, table top role playing games, programming, and many other things its called Kel and Lok Games. My 4E Fantasy Grounds game is currently full.
I would be willing to give you a vorpal sword and ring of invisibility at 1st level, if you think that I as a DM couldn't easily bring it into balance instantly.

Frodo didn't enjoy his ring of invisibility so much. Vorpal swords could have equally nasty side effects. No pc should think that the DM can't handle such a simple task.
No pc should think that the DM can't handle such a simple task.


And what about new/inexperienced DMs?
It seems like the warnings regarding the really powerful magic items could stand to be a bit sterner, and the items themselves are in need of some rebalancing.
The advice for handing out items should be very loud with their warnings.

And the modules should reflect it as well.

Orzel, Halfelven son of Zel, Mystic Ranger, Bane to Dragons, Death to Undeath, Killer of Abyssals, King of the Wilds. Constitution Based Class for Next!

There are a number of problematic items in the Magic Item document:
Minor Properties: Guardian. Initiative is universally good in combat. One minor property shouldn't be better than any other.



It's utterly impossible to avoid.  Given the subjectivity of "better", there are always going to be abilities that people feel are better than others.

Ethereal Plate: Weighs as much as cotton. What interaction does that have with spells, movement, etc...why is cotton restrictive(or not)?



Make a judgment call.  We don't need the game to tell us how our characters wipe their arses.  We don't need it to tell us every other little detail, either. 
Gaurdian is far more broadly applicable than any other Minor properties, it's obviously of a higher order. It's like putting fireball as a first level spell next to burning hands.

As for the ethereal full plate, it seems like you're a victim of poor choices in descriptive text. While one would imagine that such light armor would offer benefits along those lines the only ability provided by the armor is the ethereal state. Despite it's description it has the same states as normal plate armor.
 

No pc should think that the DM can't handle such a simple task.


And what about new/inexperienced DMs?



They wil learn with experimentation. That is how it works.

Who says that learning can't be fun? My group laughs at what we did when we were munchkins now. Good times.




By the time you find new DMs to 'stick it out and learn from experimentation' you'll have lost plenty of people to the learning curve.

Assuming that someone will 'learn' or that they are 'a good DM' is not the way to design a game that is supposed to attract new players and DMs...Smile

The way to design the game is to make the smallest learning curve possible with the least amount of experimentation possible, but with the greatest flexibility possible.

Making a game where the DM has to do everything and constantly has to adjust dials takes away time from the DMs real job, which is to tell a story and run NPCs and monsters, as well as handling the rare situation that the rules don't cover...
"Unite the [fan] base? Hardly. As of right now, I doubt their ability to unite a slightly unruly teabag with a cup of water."--anjelika
1-4E play style
The 4E play style is a high action cinematic style of play where characters worry less about being killed in one hit and more about strategy and what their next move is and the one after it. The players talk back and forth about planning a battle and who can do what to influence the outcome. 4E play is filled with cinematic over the top action. An Eladrin teleports out of the grip of the Ogre. The Fighter slams the dragons foot with his hammer causing it to rear up and stagger back in pain. The Cleric creates a holy zone where their allies weapons are guided to their targets and whenever an enemy dies the Clerics allies are healed. 4E is about knowing when to lauch your nova attack, whether its a huge arcane spell that causes enemies to whirl around in a chaotic storm, or if its a trained adrenaline surge that causes you to attack many many times with two weapons on a single target, or a surge of adrenaline that keeps you going though you should already be dead. Its about tactics and the inability to carry around a bag of potions or a few wands and never have to worry about healing. Its about the guy that can barely role play having the same chance to convince the king to aid the group as the guy that takes improv acting classes and regularly stars as an extra on movies.
Stormwind Fallacy
The Stormwind Fallacy, aka the Roleplayer vs Rollplayer Fallacy Just because one optimizes his characters mechanically does not mean that they cannot also roleplay, and vice versa. Corollary: Doing one in a game does not preclude, nor infringe upon, the ability to do the other in the same game. Generalization 1: One is not automatically a worse role player if he optimizes, and vice versa. Generalization 2: A non-optimized character is not automatically role played better than an optimized one, and vice versa. ...[aside]... Proof: These two elements rely on different aspects of a player's game play. Optimization factors in to how well one understands the rules and handles synergies to produce a very effective end result. Role playing deals with how well a player can act in character and behave as if he was someone else. A person can act while understanding the rules, and can build something powerful while still handling an effective character. There is nothing in the game -- mechanical or otherwise -- restricting one if you participate in the other. Claiming that an optimizer cannot role play (or is participating in a play style that isn't supportive of role playing) because he is an optimizer, or vice versa, is committing the Stormwind Fallacy.
The spells we should getLook here to Check out my adventures and ideas. I've started a blog, about video games, table top role playing games, programming, and many other things its called Kel and Lok Games. My 4E Fantasy Grounds game is currently full.
There are a number of problematic items in the Magic Item document:
Minor Properties: Guardian. Initiative is universally good in combat. One minor property shouldn't be better than any other.



It's utterly impossible to avoid.  Given the subjectivity of "better", there are always going to be abilities that people feel are better than others.

Ethereal Plate: Weighs as much as cotton. What interaction does that have with spells, movement, etc...why is cotton restrictive(or not)?



Make a judgment call.  We don't need the game to tell us how our characters wipe their arses.  We don't need it to tell us every other little detail, either. 



Yes there will be variance between properties of a type, however that variance should be as small as possible. That's how we avoid imbalance and a return of the min/max as the only way to play...Smile
"Unite the [fan] base? Hardly. As of right now, I doubt their ability to unite a slightly unruly teabag with a cup of water."--anjelika
1-4E play style
The 4E play style is a high action cinematic style of play where characters worry less about being killed in one hit and more about strategy and what their next move is and the one after it. The players talk back and forth about planning a battle and who can do what to influence the outcome. 4E play is filled with cinematic over the top action. An Eladrin teleports out of the grip of the Ogre. The Fighter slams the dragons foot with his hammer causing it to rear up and stagger back in pain. The Cleric creates a holy zone where their allies weapons are guided to their targets and whenever an enemy dies the Clerics allies are healed. 4E is about knowing when to lauch your nova attack, whether its a huge arcane spell that causes enemies to whirl around in a chaotic storm, or if its a trained adrenaline surge that causes you to attack many many times with two weapons on a single target, or a surge of adrenaline that keeps you going though you should already be dead. Its about tactics and the inability to carry around a bag of potions or a few wands and never have to worry about healing. Its about the guy that can barely role play having the same chance to convince the king to aid the group as the guy that takes improv acting classes and regularly stars as an extra on movies.
Stormwind Fallacy
The Stormwind Fallacy, aka the Roleplayer vs Rollplayer Fallacy Just because one optimizes his characters mechanically does not mean that they cannot also roleplay, and vice versa. Corollary: Doing one in a game does not preclude, nor infringe upon, the ability to do the other in the same game. Generalization 1: One is not automatically a worse role player if he optimizes, and vice versa. Generalization 2: A non-optimized character is not automatically role played better than an optimized one, and vice versa. ...[aside]... Proof: These two elements rely on different aspects of a player's game play. Optimization factors in to how well one understands the rules and handles synergies to produce a very effective end result. Role playing deals with how well a player can act in character and behave as if he was someone else. A person can act while understanding the rules, and can build something powerful while still handling an effective character. There is nothing in the game -- mechanical or otherwise -- restricting one if you participate in the other. Claiming that an optimizer cannot role play (or is participating in a play style that isn't supportive of role playing) because he is an optimizer, or vice versa, is committing the Stormwind Fallacy.
The spells we should getLook here to Check out my adventures and ideas. I've started a blog, about video games, table top role playing games, programming, and many other things its called Kel and Lok Games. My 4E Fantasy Grounds game is currently full.

I can't help but think people might be missing the point of the OP.


In principle I have to agree, each quality should be on par with the others in that category. That doesn't mean equal, but usually the indicator I use is by watching what players pick for items with their starting wealth.


Like the belt of battle and the healing belt in 3e... Every single player, without exception, would grab those items no matter what. As a DM my reaction then is to up the difficulty of the encounters to deal with those items and I adjusted how they worked a little bit.


The ring of invis is another good example, but the price kept most people out of it (I started stipulating that no more than 1/3 of their starting wealth be spent on a single item). I have one player who's reaction was to buy as many as 50 potions of invisibility at a time. A money sink but it speaks volumes about how valuable invisibility is to that player.



Thing is, this is a playtest and they've handed us stuff. To say that the DM should be able to adjust is fair enough if we're clawing through magic items in a published book, but the whole point of this is for us to complain about stuff so they can read what we say and adjust it.


So yes, there are problems with the magic items. There are gonna be, that's the point. Let's focus on what adjustments need to be made rather than dismiss concerns on the grounds that the DM can fix it.


I can't help but think people might be missing the point of the OP.


In principle I have to agree, each quality should be on par with the others in that category. That doesn't mean equal, but usually the indicator I use is by watching what players pick for items with their starting wealth.


Like the belt of battle and the healing belt in 3e... Every single player, without exception, would grab those items no matter what. As a DM my reaction then is to up the difficulty of the encounters to deal with those items and I adjusted how they worked a little bit.


The ring of invis is another good example, but the price kept most people out of it (I started stipulating that no more than 1/3 of their starting wealth be spent on a single item). I have one player who's reaction was to buy as many as 50 potions of invisibility at a time. A money sink but it speaks volumes about how valuable invisibility is to that player.



Thing is, this is a playtest and they've handed us stuff. To say that the DM should be able to adjust is fair enough if we're clawing through magic items in a published book, but the whole point of this is for us to complain about stuff so they can read what we say and adjust it.


So yes, there are problems with the magic items. There are gonna be, that's the point. Let's focus on what adjustments need to be made rather than dismiss concerns on the grounds that the DM can fix it.




The only problem I see is that the DM shouldn't be forced to balance the game, that's the developers job. If they want to throw a broken module into the mix that is optional I'm all for it, but the base core game should be balanced...Smile
"Unite the [fan] base? Hardly. As of right now, I doubt their ability to unite a slightly unruly teabag with a cup of water."--anjelika
1-4E play style
The 4E play style is a high action cinematic style of play where characters worry less about being killed in one hit and more about strategy and what their next move is and the one after it. The players talk back and forth about planning a battle and who can do what to influence the outcome. 4E play is filled with cinematic over the top action. An Eladrin teleports out of the grip of the Ogre. The Fighter slams the dragons foot with his hammer causing it to rear up and stagger back in pain. The Cleric creates a holy zone where their allies weapons are guided to their targets and whenever an enemy dies the Clerics allies are healed. 4E is about knowing when to lauch your nova attack, whether its a huge arcane spell that causes enemies to whirl around in a chaotic storm, or if its a trained adrenaline surge that causes you to attack many many times with two weapons on a single target, or a surge of adrenaline that keeps you going though you should already be dead. Its about tactics and the inability to carry around a bag of potions or a few wands and never have to worry about healing. Its about the guy that can barely role play having the same chance to convince the king to aid the group as the guy that takes improv acting classes and regularly stars as an extra on movies.
Stormwind Fallacy
The Stormwind Fallacy, aka the Roleplayer vs Rollplayer Fallacy Just because one optimizes his characters mechanically does not mean that they cannot also roleplay, and vice versa. Corollary: Doing one in a game does not preclude, nor infringe upon, the ability to do the other in the same game. Generalization 1: One is not automatically a worse role player if he optimizes, and vice versa. Generalization 2: A non-optimized character is not automatically role played better than an optimized one, and vice versa. ...[aside]... Proof: These two elements rely on different aspects of a player's game play. Optimization factors in to how well one understands the rules and handles synergies to produce a very effective end result. Role playing deals with how well a player can act in character and behave as if he was someone else. A person can act while understanding the rules, and can build something powerful while still handling an effective character. There is nothing in the game -- mechanical or otherwise -- restricting one if you participate in the other. Claiming that an optimizer cannot role play (or is participating in a play style that isn't supportive of role playing) because he is an optimizer, or vice versa, is committing the Stormwind Fallacy.
The spells we should getLook here to Check out my adventures and ideas. I've started a blog, about video games, table top role playing games, programming, and many other things its called Kel and Lok Games. My 4E Fantasy Grounds game is currently full.

yes. Which is why the playtest response needs to shy away from saying the DM will do it.


Once that puppy's live, the DM will have to do it but by then probably it'll mostly be fine.

My view on ability boost items is that they should give them approximate abilities, not try to replicate monster stats that are clearly going to p*ss all over the bounded system.

Strength boost items should grant the carrying capacity of the strength in question and a daily ability to perform feats of strength (such granting the carrying capacity of giant-sized creatures - presumably doubled - and a boost to stregnth based checks equal to the damage boost below) for a number of rounds equal to the wearer's con modifier.  It should grant a bonus to damage equal to the difference between 16 strength and the strength in question (assuming that ogres will retain 18 strength), a boost to the distance you can throw objects, and weapon charts for hurled rocks.  Stone giant strength can be distinguised by having a greater range on thrown rocks.

Sure it's a more complex item but it retains its flavour and it doesn't need to boost attack rolls to be useful or interesting, it wont break bounded accuracy, and the characters's strength score is still relevant to the damage boost and skill check boost.  If they want a boost to attack rolls, grant a flat +1 very rare, +2 legendary, and +3 artifact but personally I can live without it or you could add it to the feats of strength feature for a few rounds each day.

I'm fine with at-will abilities but they need to come with a downside.  Maybe using the belt means the wearer has to make endurance checks to avoid being exhausted if its powers are used for more rounds than your con mod, same with boots of speed.  People in the hit points thread have been moaning that con will be rubbish if you don't get extra hp every level - well here is a way to redress the balance.  They can use cha for the same effect for mental items.

We all know that flat bonuses are here to stay; it's a central defining characteristic to D&D magic items. As for how common they are, that's really out of the hands of the books. Maybe toning them down from +1-5 to +1-3 isn't such a bad idea, but the idea of making them exceedingly rare is probably not gonna fly in the mainstream.


I know that has implications for the bounded system but I think this also highlights the limitations of the bounded system as a design choice. Maybe trying to stick to it to the letter is a mistake?



Anyway I've got my reservations.

Thing is, this is a playtest and they've handed us stuff. To say that the DM should be able to adjust is fair enough if we're clawing through magic items in a published book, but the whole point of this is for us to complain about stuff so they can read what we say and adjust it.

So yes, there are problems with the magic items. There are gonna be, that's the point. Let's focus on what adjustments need to be made rather than dismiss concerns on the grounds that the DM can fix it.




Well said. Some people seem to forget that this is a playtest, and that we're supposed to offer feedback on things that we think need improvement. Taking the "just let the DM fix it" cop out isn't going to improve the game. And it's a silly argument to make, in any case. Good rules empower the DM far more than bad rules do.
I feel that magic items don't need to be as balanced as in 4E because they are not within the purview of players to choose from. They are handled by DMs. Personally i don't want items giving small bonus  ex, +1 or +2 saves or death saving throws so they are less unbalancing. I want them to be bigger and more meaningful and advantage on saves is more significant and what i want magic items to be cabable of doing. But i agree that some items could be toned down a little bit.

The Potion of Speed is another item i think is problematic. It may affect some of your effect's durations and end them prematurly because your next turn comes faster than it should. I'd prefer if it'd double your movement and give an additional action rather than giving an additional turn for exemple.

RE: Plate Mail of Etherealness; While it weight as much as cotton, i'd say it still doesn't allow Wizard to cast spell as its still an armor which Wizards can't cast into. It may still be too rigid and limit arms movement even if it weight almost nothing for exemple.

Thing is, this is a playtest and they've handed us stuff. To say that the DM should be able to adjust is fair enough if we're clawing through magic items in a published book, but the whole point of this is for us to complain about stuff so they can read what we say and adjust it.

So yes, there are problems with the magic items. There are gonna be, that's the point. Let's focus on what adjustments need to be made rather than dismiss concerns on the grounds that the DM can fix it.




Well said. Some people seem to forget that this is a playtest, and that we're supposed to offer feedback on things that we think need improvement. Taking the "just let the DM fix it" cop out isn't going to improve the game. And it's a silly argument to make, in any case. Good rules empower the DM far more than bad rules do.



Just let the DM fix it is not a cop out if this is an area that is intended specifically for the DM to adjust. This is such an area.
My view on ability boost items is that they should give them approximate abilities, not try to replicate monster stats that are clearly going to p*ss all over the bounded system.

Strength boost items should grant the carrying capacity of the strength in question and a daily ability to perform feats of strength (such granting the carrying capacity of giant-sized creatures - presumably doubled - and a boost to stregnth based checks equal to the damage boost below) for a number of rounds equal to the wearer's con modifier.  It should grant a bonus to damage equal to the difference between 16 strength and the strength in question (assuming that ogres will retain 18 strength), a boost to the distance you can throw objects, and weapon charts for hurled rocks.  Stone giant strength can be distinguised by having a greater range on thrown rocks.



I completely disagree.
If an item is to grant an ability score change (as they should be able to), then that item should change your ability score directly, not give a bunch of derived bonuses.

If game mechanics breaks if a character gains 25 STR, then the game mechanics are broken to begin with, not the item granting 25 STR.
Just let the DM fix it is not a cop out if this is an area that is intended specifically for the DM to adjust. This is such an area.



The DM is supposed to be in charge of handing out magic items in his or her game, among many other things. What the DM shouldn't have to worry about is whether or not every item he gives out is going to break the game because WotC did a poor job balancing the items that they published in their book. Making sure that the various options in the game are balanced and work well together is WotC's job, not the DM's. Our job as playtesters is to help WotC get it right.
Maybe there should be a message written in big caps:

VERY RARE OR BETTER ITEMS WARP THE GAME MATH IN UNEXPECTED WAYS. USE WITH CAUTION.

Then make all the problematic items very rare, legendary, or artifact.

Orzel, Halfelven son of Zel, Mystic Ranger, Bane to Dragons, Death to Undeath, Killer of Abyssals, King of the Wilds. Constitution Based Class for Next!

Just let the DM fix it is not a cop out if this is an area that is intended specifically for the DM to adjust. This is such an area.


If the stuff being presented was the final published work, I'd be inclined to agree. It's not a finished product though; the purpose of the playtest feedback is to identify areas that could be adjusted before the DM needs to add their layer of adjustments on the outside of it.


What you're saying about the section being open to DM adjustment from the outset is a valid point that should inform our feedback; perfect balance is not the objective. But there is a balance to be reached here, even if it's intended to be tweaked.


I still submit that in the context of a playtest an assumption that the DM will fix it is probably counterproductive.

Gaurdian is far more broadly applicable than any other Minor properties, it's obviously of a higher order. It's like putting fireball as a first level spell next to burning hands.

As for the ethereal full plate, it seems like you're a victim of poor choices in descriptive text. While one would imagine that such light armor would offer benefits along those lines the only ability provided by the armor is the ethereal state. Despite it's description it has the same states as normal plate armor.
 



It is the problem with the difference between fluff(y cotton) text and mechanical text. Armor that is as light as cotton must have a mechanical benefit in weight. That the benefit isn't listed opens up the possibility that other benefits are also not listed.
The Wizard doesn't describe the reason it cannot cast spells while wearring armor, simply that it cannot. If it was due to weight you'd have a point but we don't know. Could also be due to that armor limit gesturing too much. Regardless, I'd say the armor must specifucally say it allow spellcasting to do so. (ex. elven chain)

A mechanical benefit of having a Plate Mail that weight as much as cotton would mean it probably weight nothing and doesn't add to your emcumbrance. But i agree it should say it in the armor's effect.
Gaurdian is far more broadly applicable than any other Minor properties, it's obviously of a higher order. It's like putting fireball as a first level spell next to burning hands.

As for the ethereal full plate, it seems like you're a victim of poor choices in descriptive text. While one would imagine that such light armor would offer benefits along those lines the only ability provided by the armor is the ethereal state. Despite it's description it has the same states as normal plate armor.
 



It is the problem with the difference between fluff(y cotton) text and mechanical text. Armor that is as light as cotton must have a mechanical benefit in weight. That the benefit isn't listed opens up the possibility that other benefits are also not listed.



I don't see the big deal.  By reading, it's clear that it has a weight benefit.  If the benefit is clear, you don't NEED it to be in a stat block.  If it's not clear, then you as the DM make a ruling for your game and are done with it.  Not everything that is a benefit needs to be listed in some block of text somewhere separate.
Not everything that is a benefit needs to be listed in some block of text somewhere separate.



maybe not but it makes things a whole lot easier.

Not everything that is a benefit needs to be listed in some block of text somewhere separate.



maybe not but it makes things a whole lot easier.




It also makes it feel more sterile.  I like the mixed feel of 1e-3e.  The sterile 4e text blocks just really turned me off. 
Not everything that is a benefit needs to be listed in some block of text somewhere separate.



maybe not but it makes things a whole lot easier.





It also makes it feel more sterile.  I like the mixed feel of 1e-3e.  The sterile 4e text blocks just really turned me off. 



To be honest, I'll live with a well organised book if it means it's slightly more sterile. There are other elements you can bring into the book to make it feel more fanciful that don't cause confusion.


DM/player friction is often created by discrepencies between stat blocks and text. I'd avoid it like the plague.

No pc should think that the DM can't handle such a simple task.


And what about new/inexperienced DMs?



They can do what others have done, learn from their mistakes.   

Besides there is a lot to be said about following the guidelines and recommendations printed in the books you bought. Not reading and understanding the rules isn't an excuse.

Besides a +3 sword that happens to lop off somebody's head occasionally isnt the same as a weapon with an always on +5 to hit and damage, that lops off a head on a 19 or 20. You can't tell me that 6d8 on a crit is any worse than a mage with several fireballs or any other attack that does extra dice.

I really think that attunement as it is presented here is a little too easy to abuse. With some serious tweaking I could see this being a nice rule.
of course, just 'cause it's in a stat block doesn't mean the block has to be laid out in a corporate way. It's just important all the info can be found consistently. I didn't like the 4e layout either but I could see how they could have acomplished the same level of consistency in a more artistic way.
Gaurdian is far more broadly applicable than any other Minor properties, it's obviously of a higher order. It's like putting fireball as a first level spell next to burning hands.

As for the ethereal full plate, it seems like you're a victim of poor choices in descriptive text. While one would imagine that such light armor would offer benefits along those lines the only ability provided by the armor is the ethereal state. Despite it's description it has the same states as normal plate armor.
 



It is the problem with the difference between fluff(y cotton) text and mechanical text. Armor that is as light as cotton must have a mechanical benefit in weight. That the benefit isn't listed opens up the possibility that other benefits are also not listed.



I don't see the big deal.  By reading, it's clear that it has a weight benefit.  If the benefit is clear, you don't NEED it to be in a stat block.  If it's not clear, then you as the DM make a ruling for your game and are done with it.  Not everything that is a benefit needs to be listed in some block of text somewhere separate.



Because the benefit is not clear. Heavy armor is heavy for a reason. Do you have disadvantage for Stealth? Is your movement slowed by 5 feet? By defining the specific benefit(weight is say 5 lbs), it makes it clear that that you don't get the other benefits unless it says you do.
Additional Problem: the cost of non-magical Mithral Chain, Dragon Scale, and Plate armor is 5000 gold. Magical Mithral Chain, Dragon Scale, and Plate armor are all Very Rare. Which is valued at 2000-5000 gold.
Additional Problem: the cost of non-magical Mithral Chain, Dragon Scale, and Plate armor is 5000 gold. Magical Mithral Chain, Dragon Scale, and Plate armor are all Very Rare. Which is valued at 2000-5000 gold.


I think i know why, its because its not authentic anymore once its custom enchanted and thus is value decrease, like antique cars Tongue Out

J/K this is a problem i agree.
Additional Problem: the cost of non-magical Mithral Chain, Dragon Scale, and Plate armor is 5000 gold. Magical Mithral Chain, Dragon Scale, and Plate armor are all Very Rare. Which is valued at 2000-5000 gold.


I think i know why, its because its not authentic anymore once its enchanted and thus is value decrease 


J/K this is a problem i agree.



Someone in the other thread pointed this out and justified it by saying none of the magic items were intended for purchase anymore, so a proportionate gold value wasn't necessary.


I see his point but it'd be nice to have the game at least start with a linear price guide that's easy to understand, even if it totally doesn't reflect the reality of economics and the value of goods in any way.



What about magic item creation? That's always a nifty facet of the game.

Gaurdian is far more broadly applicable than any other Minor properties, it's obviously of a higher order. It's like putting fireball as a first level spell next to burning hands.

As for the ethereal full plate, it seems like you're a victim of poor choices in descriptive text. While one would imagine that such light armor would offer benefits along those lines the only ability provided by the armor is the ethereal state. Despite it's description it has the same states as normal plate armor.
 



It is the problem with the difference between fluff(y cotton) text and mechanical text. Armor that is as light as cotton must have a mechanical benefit in weight. That the benefit isn't listed opens up the possibility that other benefits are also not listed.



I don't see the big deal.  By reading, it's clear that it has a weight benefit.  If the benefit is clear, you don't NEED it to be in a stat block.  If it's not clear, then you as the DM make a ruling for your game and are done with it.  Not everything that is a benefit needs to be listed in some block of text somewhere separate.

Why strict benefit ? You have something highly encumbering that weight nothing, it can even be dangerous.
Let's catch a child's hand with a steel gauntlet that weight nothing, and let us try to control the strength level of our grasp. I bet that the children will have to live the rest of his life without his hand…

Lack of weight may also cause problems with spiked pauldron when raising arms if not wearing helmet.

Wearing this kind of armor should require special training.

If you think my english is bad, just wait until you see my spanish and my italian. Defiling languages is an art.

Additional Problem: the cost of non-magical Mithral Chain, Dragon Scale, and Plate armor is 5000 gold. Magical Mithral Chain, Dragon Scale, and Plate armor are all Very Rare. Which is valued at 2000-5000 gold.



+1.

Magic items value must be increased

Stay Awhile and Listen!

I think it is pretty safe to say the item costs were not edited as closely as the rest of the document for a couple of reasons.


  1. The point of the playtest is to test mechanics.

  2. There is a whole section on the first page of the document that states you cannot buy or sell magic item easily and that they are essentially priceless. 

Kalex the Omen 
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Additional Problem: the cost of non-magical Mithral Chain, Dragon Scale, and Plate armor is 5000 gold. Magical Mithral Chain, Dragon Scale, and Plate armor are all Very Rare. Which is valued at 2000-5000 gold.


I think i know why, its because its not authentic anymore once its enchanted and thus is value decrease 


J/K this is a problem i agree.



Someone in the other thread pointed this out and justified it by saying none of the magic items were intended for purchase anymore, so a proportionate gold value wasn't necessary.


I see his point but it'd be nice to have the game at least start with a linear price guide that's easy to understand, even if it totally doesn't reflect the reality of economics and the value of goods in any way.



What about magic item creation? That's always a nifty facet of the game.




I think the part about selling magic items sugest thet the listed price is the sell price not the buy price.
as it basicly sais magic items are not for sale and the part about item prices is only mentioned when it comes to selling items.

so the price listed is not the buy price like we are used to but the sell price witch in 4th edition was between 1/5 and 1/2 of the price to buy the item.


Because the benefit is not clear. Heavy armor is heavy for a reason. Do you have disadvantage for Stealth? Is your movement slowed by 5 feet? By defining the specific benefit(weight is say 5 lbs), it makes it clear that that you don't get the other benefits unless it says you do.



What's not clear?  Yes you have disadvantage.  Plate is not quiet no matter how light it gets.  Yes you are slowed. Bulk doesn't go away even if it is light.  Put two 2x2 card board boxes on your feet and try to walk in such a way that you don't damage them.   You will move slowly.  The bulk of plate armor will keep you from moving at full speed.  

What's more, your solution doesn't affect either issue.  So what if they say the weight is 5lbs.  You will still get disadvantage and move slower.
My view on ability boost items is that they should give them approximate abilities, not try to replicate monster stats that are clearly going to p*ss all over the bounded system.

Strength boost items should grant the carrying capacity of the strength in question and a daily ability to perform feats of strength (such granting the carrying capacity of giant-sized creatures - presumably doubled - and a boost to stregnth based checks equal to the damage boost below) for a number of rounds equal to the wearer's con modifier.  It should grant a bonus to damage equal to the difference between 16 strength and the strength in question (assuming that ogres will retain 18 strength), a boost to the distance you can throw objects, and weapon charts for hurled rocks.  Stone giant strength can be distinguised by having a greater range on thrown rocks.



I completely disagree.
If an item is to grant an ability score change (as they should be able to), then that item should change your ability score directly, not give a bunch of derived bonuses.

If game mechanics breaks if a character gains 25 STR, then the game mechanics are broken to begin with, not the item granting 25 STR.



This is yet another example of why attack bonuses and defences based on ability scores is a bad idea.  Having an item that makes you super strong sounds cool, but when it also makes your attacks super-accurate it breaks the immersion for me.  I've gained a bunch of strength and now I can't miss?  Wouldn't it make more sense if my accuracy went down* due to throwing myself off balance by swinging a weapon around that suddenly seems weightless?

* Note: I'm saying this would make sense in-character; I don't think it'd be a good idea for the game.
Wouldn't it make more sense if my accuracy went down* due to throwing myself off balance by swinging a weapon around that suddenly seems weightless?


Maybe temporarily while you adjust to your new abilities, but not afterwards.  Strength contributes a lot to accuracy in hand-to-hand combat, because you can get your weapon moving faster and adjust what you're doing with it easier.  Also keep in mind that in D&D, "accuracy" takes into account the other guy's armor or other physical protection.  So a hit made possible by a high Strength could mean "you stabbed your sword right through the dragon's scales, you unstoppable badass you."

Now, if I wanted to make a complicated model of accuracy, it'd be some function of Strength, Dexterity, and Wisdom.  But for simplicity, it's fine that the game just goes with Strength.  Not implausible at all.
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