What do you find add tactical depth to D&D Next ?

We know the system is still in development, but at this stage, what do you find add tactical depth to D&D Next ?

Me, I find Breaking Up Movement add tactical depth and i like how it allow one to move any increment of 5 feet, stop to perform an action and resolve movement. Its makes movement more fluid than ever!

And you ?
Thanks to most monsters dying in 1-2 hits and 5E's emphasis on spamming at-will attacks(conditions are pointless when things die fast anyway, using cantrips and saving spells for the "boss"), tactical depth is basically impossible.
...whatever
Presently, due to monsters being not where they should be yet (and the devs have said they are aware of that), I don't think we have much of a chance for anything terribly deep, tactical-wise.

For minor use of tactics, Sneak Attack is at least somewhat tactical, as there don't seem to be penalties for firing into melee, and one of the ways one gets to use Sneak Attack is if an opponent is within an ally's reach.

And I agree that breaking up movement is tactical, especially when coupled with Spring Attack (particularly when one uses a ranged attack there).

So, situationally, there can be tactical options, but a true tactical depth just isn't quite there yet. For some, that's a big deal. For others, less so. *shrugs* 

For those confused on how DDN's modular rules might work, this may provide some insight: http://www.tor.com/blogs/2012/11/the-world-of-darkness-shines-when-it-abandons-canon

@mikemearls: Uhhh... do you really not see all the 3e/4e that's basically the entire core system?

 

It is entirely unnecessary to denigrate someone else's approach to gaming in order to validate your own.

I find the return of fighter large amounts of enemies causes interesting tactical choices. A party of 5 makes completely different choices when fighting 1 ogre vs fighting 15 goblins.
My two copper.
creating kill zones
funneling enemy movement
unexpected (and mostly comical) improv to gain actions
compelling enemies to trigger reactions
gaining advantage via ambush
gaining advantage by causing chaos
marching order
gear load up
spell selection

just off the top of my head

"The Apollo moon landing is off topic for this thread and this forum. Let's get back on topic." Crazy Monkey

Doubling the number of manuvers the fighter/rouge/monk gets.
doubling the spell slots for clerics/wizards.
doubling everyone's HP (monsters and PCs).
Doubling sneak attack bonus (though limiting to advantage only).
doubling the monster's to-hit. (Well, +3, but that's double for some).

Then things start getting interesting.

guides
List of no-action attacks.
Dynamic vs Static Bonuses
Phalanx tactics and builds
Crivens! A Pictsies Guide Good
Power
s to intentionally miss with
Mr. Cellophane: How to be unnoticed
Way's to fire around corners
Crits: what their really worth
Retroactive bonus vs Static bonus.
Runepriest handbook & discussion thread
Holy Symbols to hang around your neck
Ways to Gain or Downgrade Actions
List of bonuses to saving throws
The Ghost with the Most (revenant handbook)
my builds
F-111 Interdictor Long (200+ squares) distance ally teleporter. With some warlord stuff. Broken in a plot way, not a power way.

Thought Switch Higher level build that grants upto 14 attacks on turn 1. If your allies play along, it's broken.

Elven Critters Crit op with crit generation. 5 of these will end anything. Broken.

King Fisher Optimized net user.  Moderate.

Boominator Fun catch-22 booming blade build with either strong or completely broken damage depending on your reading.

Very Distracting Warlock Lot's of dazing and major penalties to hit. Overpowered.

Pocket Protector Pixie Stealth Knight. Maximizing the defender's aura by being in an ally's/enemy's square.

Yakuza NinjIntimiAdin: Perma-stealth Striker that offers a little protection for ally's, and can intimidate bloodied enemies. Very Strong.

Chargeburgler with cheese Ranged attacks at the end of a charge along with perma-stealth. Solid, could be overpowered if tweaked.

Void Defender Defends giving a penalty to hit anyone but him, then removing himself from play. Can get somewhat broken in epic.

Scry and Die Attacking from around corners, while staying hidden. Moderate to broken, depending on the situation.

Skimisher Fly in, attack, and fly away. Also prevents enemies from coming close. Moderate to Broken depending on the enemy, but shouldn't make the game un-fun, as the rest of your team is at risk, and you have enough weaknesses.

Indestructible Simply won't die, even if you sleep though combat.  One of THE most abusive character in 4e.

Sir Robin (Bravely Charge Away) He automatically slows and pushes an enemy (5 squares), while charging away. Hard to rate it's power level, since it's terrain dependent.

Death's Gatekeeper A fun twist on a healic, making your party "unkillable". Overpowered to Broken, but shouldn't actually make the game un-fun, just TPK proof.

Death's Gatekeeper mk2, (Stealth Edition) Make your party "unkillable", and you hidden, while doing solid damage. Stronger then the above, but also easier for a DM to shut down. Broken, until your DM get's enough of it.

Domination and Death Dominate everything then kill them quickly. Only works @ 30, but is broken multiple ways.

Battlemind Mc Prone-Daze Protecting your allies by keeping enemies away. Quite powerful.

The Retaliator Getting hit deals more damage to the enemy then you receive yourself, and you can take plenty of hits. Heavy item dependency, Broken.

Dead Kobold Transit Teleports 98 squares a turn, and can bring someone along for the ride. Not fully built, so i can't judge the power.

Psilent Guardian Protect your allies, while being invisible. Overpowered, possibly broken.

Rune of Vengance Do lot's of damage while boosting your teams. Strong to slightly overpowered.

Charedent BarrageA charging ardent. Fine in a normal team, overpowered if there are 2 together, and easily broken in teams of 5.

Super Knight A tough, sticky, high damage knight. Strong.

Super Duper Knight Basically the same as super knight with items, making it far more broken.

Mora, the unkillable avenger Solid damage, while being neigh indestuctable. Overpowered, but not broken.

Swordburst Maximus At-Will Close Burst 3 that slide and prones. Protects allies with off actions. Strong, possibly over powered with the right party.

Doubling the number of manuvers the fighter/rouge/monk gets. doubling the spell slots for clerics/wizards. doubling everyone's HP (monsters and PCs). Doubling sneak attack bonus (though limiting to advantage only). doubling the monster's to-hit. (Well, +3, but that's double for some). Then things start getting interesting.



nice...I will have to toggle that

"The Apollo moon landing is off topic for this thread and this forum. Let's get back on topic." Crazy Monkey

Doubling HP is a surprisingly big one for this.  I know they want fast combats and all, but when the fighter can one-hit most monsters, there's just not much point in tactical depth.  Status effects are worthless, because death is the ultimate status effect.  Setting up for the future is worthless, because you could jst kill the thing right now.  Stickiness is useful if you can get more bad guys adjacent to you than you can kill in a round, but then we haven't gotten any depth to stickiness.  

The other thing is, tactical depth is, by my definition anyway, a matter of having the rules mechanically reward smart play.  That's antithetical to simplicity, since simplicity is achieved by minimalizing the number of variables under consideration.  5e has made its bed, and must now sleep in it.  Some depth can be tacked on by liberally granting advantage whenever the DM thinks the players have dome someting that a more complex system would have rewarded automatically, but that requires an accomodating DM, preferably with a decent grasp of what smart play is.  And even then it's terribly unsatisfying, especially given how useless advantage is to PCs when monsters have so little AC.
The first time we played, the organically rolled wizard had 2 hp and i (with a con of 18!) went into negatives in the first attack of the first combat. The system desperately needs more hp because, right now, the only optimal action 90% of the time is to simply deal straight, boring damage all day.

More hp + more "powers" per character, please.
I agree with Mellored. Get rid of raygun cantrips and double the slots and or give arcanes better fighting. Double Maneuvers with more multiple party member maneuvers. More sneak attack damage, more weapon traits with rof for ranged and casting time. Oh and less hitting.
We know the system is still in development, but at this stage, what do you find add tactical depth to D&D Next ?

Me, I find Breaking Up Movement add tactical depth and i like how it allow one to move any increment of 5 feet, stop to perform an action and resolve movement. Its makes movement more fluid than ever!

And you ?

I definitely dig the movement freedom!

For me, it's the open-endedness of definition. During the course of vast 4E public play, I observed tons of players spending entire combats staring at their character sheets and considering the map as a game board. It appeared to most that your ability to impact the story was clearly and solely defined by what was written on your character sheet. I now see colorful, imaginative battles, with players only referencing their character sheets when asked for numbers (and that happens less and less often as players are more apt to know their numbers off the top of their head).

Combat has become more dynamic by virtue of one's ability to shape it through storytelling, with much less definitive consequence being enforced by the coded rules.

Danny

Imaginitive stories is not the same as tactical depth.

Not that they have to be at odds, but i have yet to see a poetry of math, or creative calculus class.

guides
List of no-action attacks.
Dynamic vs Static Bonuses
Phalanx tactics and builds
Crivens! A Pictsies Guide Good
Power
s to intentionally miss with
Mr. Cellophane: How to be unnoticed
Way's to fire around corners
Crits: what their really worth
Retroactive bonus vs Static bonus.
Runepriest handbook & discussion thread
Holy Symbols to hang around your neck
Ways to Gain or Downgrade Actions
List of bonuses to saving throws
The Ghost with the Most (revenant handbook)
my builds
F-111 Interdictor Long (200+ squares) distance ally teleporter. With some warlord stuff. Broken in a plot way, not a power way.

Thought Switch Higher level build that grants upto 14 attacks on turn 1. If your allies play along, it's broken.

Elven Critters Crit op with crit generation. 5 of these will end anything. Broken.

King Fisher Optimized net user.  Moderate.

Boominator Fun catch-22 booming blade build with either strong or completely broken damage depending on your reading.

Very Distracting Warlock Lot's of dazing and major penalties to hit. Overpowered.

Pocket Protector Pixie Stealth Knight. Maximizing the defender's aura by being in an ally's/enemy's square.

Yakuza NinjIntimiAdin: Perma-stealth Striker that offers a little protection for ally's, and can intimidate bloodied enemies. Very Strong.

Chargeburgler with cheese Ranged attacks at the end of a charge along with perma-stealth. Solid, could be overpowered if tweaked.

Void Defender Defends giving a penalty to hit anyone but him, then removing himself from play. Can get somewhat broken in epic.

Scry and Die Attacking from around corners, while staying hidden. Moderate to broken, depending on the situation.

Skimisher Fly in, attack, and fly away. Also prevents enemies from coming close. Moderate to Broken depending on the enemy, but shouldn't make the game un-fun, as the rest of your team is at risk, and you have enough weaknesses.

Indestructible Simply won't die, even if you sleep though combat.  One of THE most abusive character in 4e.

Sir Robin (Bravely Charge Away) He automatically slows and pushes an enemy (5 squares), while charging away. Hard to rate it's power level, since it's terrain dependent.

Death's Gatekeeper A fun twist on a healic, making your party "unkillable". Overpowered to Broken, but shouldn't actually make the game un-fun, just TPK proof.

Death's Gatekeeper mk2, (Stealth Edition) Make your party "unkillable", and you hidden, while doing solid damage. Stronger then the above, but also easier for a DM to shut down. Broken, until your DM get's enough of it.

Domination and Death Dominate everything then kill them quickly. Only works @ 30, but is broken multiple ways.

Battlemind Mc Prone-Daze Protecting your allies by keeping enemies away. Quite powerful.

The Retaliator Getting hit deals more damage to the enemy then you receive yourself, and you can take plenty of hits. Heavy item dependency, Broken.

Dead Kobold Transit Teleports 98 squares a turn, and can bring someone along for the ride. Not fully built, so i can't judge the power.

Psilent Guardian Protect your allies, while being invisible. Overpowered, possibly broken.

Rune of Vengance Do lot's of damage while boosting your teams. Strong to slightly overpowered.

Charedent BarrageA charging ardent. Fine in a normal team, overpowered if there are 2 together, and easily broken in teams of 5.

Super Knight A tough, sticky, high damage knight. Strong.

Super Duper Knight Basically the same as super knight with items, making it far more broken.

Mora, the unkillable avenger Solid damage, while being neigh indestuctable. Overpowered, but not broken.

Swordburst Maximus At-Will Close Burst 3 that slide and prones. Protects allies with off actions. Strong, possibly over powered with the right party.

For me, I've found setting up adds or flanks. The beasties die quick, so each combat is a mini-skirmish. I tend to buff up badguys attack and hp, just to hit someone before they die.
For me, I like cinematic combat and tactical maneuvers (not in the d&dn sense) does that for me. Mobility is a way cool part of that in my opinion.
I liked the pace of the first playtest, actually. We had improvisations and quick combats which lasted 3-6 rounds. I like quick combat in real time, but long multi round combat in game.
"What's stupid is when people decide that X is true - even when it is demonstrable untrue or 100% against what we've said - and run around complaining about that. That's just a breakdown of basic human reasoning." -Mike Mearls
Imaginitive stories is not the same as tactical depth. Not that they have to be at odds, but i have yet to see a poetry of math, or creative calculus class.

"The union of the mathematician with the poet, fervor with measure, passion with correctness, this surely is the ideal." - William James

There is a collegiate textbook entitled 'Creative Mathematics' written by H.S. Hall that addresses the concepts of imagination and mathematical discovery. -- You should peruse the course catalogs of the Ivy Leagues, private/respected science and engineering schools, as well as those made available through organizations such as the Mathematical Society of America. Connecting words, art, and math in various ways, and considering the inputs, outputs, results and deeper meaning is definitely a thing.


I, personally, find tactical depth in my ability to do whatever the hell I want through narrative, without needing the specific outline of capability written on my character sheet. DDN gives me what I need to resolve discrepancy, serving as a basis of comparison when my story attempts to impact the DM's world. It stays out of my way, and doesn't present a sandbox of options that curtail my output by virtue of its explicitly limiting mechanical ruleset. The tactical complexity thereof is endless.







Danny

Imaginitive stories is not the same as tactical depth. Not that they have to be at odds, but i have yet to see a poetry of math, or creative calculus class.

"The union of the mathematician with the poet, fervor with measure, passion with correctness, this surely is the ideal." - William James

There is a collegiate textbook entitled 'Creative Mathematics' written by H.S. Hall that addresses the concepts of imagination and mathematical discovery. -- You should peruse the course catalogs of the Ivy Leagues, private/respected science and engineering schools, as well as those made available through organizations such as the Mathematical Society of America. Connecting words, art, and math in various ways, and considering the inputs, outputs, results and deeper meaning is definitely a thing.


I, personally, find tactical depth in my ability to do whatever the hell I want through narrative, without needing the specific outline of capability written on my character sheet. DDN gives me what I need to resolve discrepancy, serving as a basis of comparison when my story attempts to impact the DM's world. It stays out of my way, and doesn't present a sandbox of options that curtail my output by virtue of its explicitly limiting mechanical ruleset. The tactical complexity thereof is endless.





That's heavy.  I like it. 

A Brave Knight of WTF - "Wielder of the Sword of Balance"

 

Rhenny's Blog:  http://community.wizards.com/user/1497701/blog

 

 

Sure they can co-exsist. But there's still no depth to tactics if "hit first, hit hard" is always the solution.

guides
List of no-action attacks.
Dynamic vs Static Bonuses
Phalanx tactics and builds
Crivens! A Pictsies Guide Good
Power
s to intentionally miss with
Mr. Cellophane: How to be unnoticed
Way's to fire around corners
Crits: what their really worth
Retroactive bonus vs Static bonus.
Runepriest handbook & discussion thread
Holy Symbols to hang around your neck
Ways to Gain or Downgrade Actions
List of bonuses to saving throws
The Ghost with the Most (revenant handbook)
my builds
F-111 Interdictor Long (200+ squares) distance ally teleporter. With some warlord stuff. Broken in a plot way, not a power way.

Thought Switch Higher level build that grants upto 14 attacks on turn 1. If your allies play along, it's broken.

Elven Critters Crit op with crit generation. 5 of these will end anything. Broken.

King Fisher Optimized net user.  Moderate.

Boominator Fun catch-22 booming blade build with either strong or completely broken damage depending on your reading.

Very Distracting Warlock Lot's of dazing and major penalties to hit. Overpowered.

Pocket Protector Pixie Stealth Knight. Maximizing the defender's aura by being in an ally's/enemy's square.

Yakuza NinjIntimiAdin: Perma-stealth Striker that offers a little protection for ally's, and can intimidate bloodied enemies. Very Strong.

Chargeburgler with cheese Ranged attacks at the end of a charge along with perma-stealth. Solid, could be overpowered if tweaked.

Void Defender Defends giving a penalty to hit anyone but him, then removing himself from play. Can get somewhat broken in epic.

Scry and Die Attacking from around corners, while staying hidden. Moderate to broken, depending on the situation.

Skimisher Fly in, attack, and fly away. Also prevents enemies from coming close. Moderate to Broken depending on the enemy, but shouldn't make the game un-fun, as the rest of your team is at risk, and you have enough weaknesses.

Indestructible Simply won't die, even if you sleep though combat.  One of THE most abusive character in 4e.

Sir Robin (Bravely Charge Away) He automatically slows and pushes an enemy (5 squares), while charging away. Hard to rate it's power level, since it's terrain dependent.

Death's Gatekeeper A fun twist on a healic, making your party "unkillable". Overpowered to Broken, but shouldn't actually make the game un-fun, just TPK proof.

Death's Gatekeeper mk2, (Stealth Edition) Make your party "unkillable", and you hidden, while doing solid damage. Stronger then the above, but also easier for a DM to shut down. Broken, until your DM get's enough of it.

Domination and Death Dominate everything then kill them quickly. Only works @ 30, but is broken multiple ways.

Battlemind Mc Prone-Daze Protecting your allies by keeping enemies away. Quite powerful.

The Retaliator Getting hit deals more damage to the enemy then you receive yourself, and you can take plenty of hits. Heavy item dependency, Broken.

Dead Kobold Transit Teleports 98 squares a turn, and can bring someone along for the ride. Not fully built, so i can't judge the power.

Psilent Guardian Protect your allies, while being invisible. Overpowered, possibly broken.

Rune of Vengance Do lot's of damage while boosting your teams. Strong to slightly overpowered.

Charedent BarrageA charging ardent. Fine in a normal team, overpowered if there are 2 together, and easily broken in teams of 5.

Super Knight A tough, sticky, high damage knight. Strong.

Super Duper Knight Basically the same as super knight with items, making it far more broken.

Mora, the unkillable avenger Solid damage, while being neigh indestuctable. Overpowered, but not broken.

Swordburst Maximus At-Will Close Burst 3 that slide and prones. Protects allies with off actions. Strong, possibly over powered with the right party.

That's heavy.  I like it.

Hehe. Thanks!


Sure they can co-exsist. But there's still no depth to tactics if "hit first, hit hard" is always the solution.

It seems we have differing opinions on the definition of 'depth' and how it applies in this context.

I also don't understand what you're getting at. Are you telling me that my personal findings are wrong? (Because that's what I'm taking from your dissenting statements.)

Danny

No. Opening things up opens things up (though always getting the DM's permission can slow things down). But that doesn't really change the tactics of hit first, hit hard.

guides
List of no-action attacks.
Dynamic vs Static Bonuses
Phalanx tactics and builds
Crivens! A Pictsies Guide Good
Power
s to intentionally miss with
Mr. Cellophane: How to be unnoticed
Way's to fire around corners
Crits: what their really worth
Retroactive bonus vs Static bonus.
Runepriest handbook & discussion thread
Holy Symbols to hang around your neck
Ways to Gain or Downgrade Actions
List of bonuses to saving throws
The Ghost with the Most (revenant handbook)
my builds
F-111 Interdictor Long (200+ squares) distance ally teleporter. With some warlord stuff. Broken in a plot way, not a power way.

Thought Switch Higher level build that grants upto 14 attacks on turn 1. If your allies play along, it's broken.

Elven Critters Crit op with crit generation. 5 of these will end anything. Broken.

King Fisher Optimized net user.  Moderate.

Boominator Fun catch-22 booming blade build with either strong or completely broken damage depending on your reading.

Very Distracting Warlock Lot's of dazing and major penalties to hit. Overpowered.

Pocket Protector Pixie Stealth Knight. Maximizing the defender's aura by being in an ally's/enemy's square.

Yakuza NinjIntimiAdin: Perma-stealth Striker that offers a little protection for ally's, and can intimidate bloodied enemies. Very Strong.

Chargeburgler with cheese Ranged attacks at the end of a charge along with perma-stealth. Solid, could be overpowered if tweaked.

Void Defender Defends giving a penalty to hit anyone but him, then removing himself from play. Can get somewhat broken in epic.

Scry and Die Attacking from around corners, while staying hidden. Moderate to broken, depending on the situation.

Skimisher Fly in, attack, and fly away. Also prevents enemies from coming close. Moderate to Broken depending on the enemy, but shouldn't make the game un-fun, as the rest of your team is at risk, and you have enough weaknesses.

Indestructible Simply won't die, even if you sleep though combat.  One of THE most abusive character in 4e.

Sir Robin (Bravely Charge Away) He automatically slows and pushes an enemy (5 squares), while charging away. Hard to rate it's power level, since it's terrain dependent.

Death's Gatekeeper A fun twist on a healic, making your party "unkillable". Overpowered to Broken, but shouldn't actually make the game un-fun, just TPK proof.

Death's Gatekeeper mk2, (Stealth Edition) Make your party "unkillable", and you hidden, while doing solid damage. Stronger then the above, but also easier for a DM to shut down. Broken, until your DM get's enough of it.

Domination and Death Dominate everything then kill them quickly. Only works @ 30, but is broken multiple ways.

Battlemind Mc Prone-Daze Protecting your allies by keeping enemies away. Quite powerful.

The Retaliator Getting hit deals more damage to the enemy then you receive yourself, and you can take plenty of hits. Heavy item dependency, Broken.

Dead Kobold Transit Teleports 98 squares a turn, and can bring someone along for the ride. Not fully built, so i can't judge the power.

Psilent Guardian Protect your allies, while being invisible. Overpowered, possibly broken.

Rune of Vengance Do lot's of damage while boosting your teams. Strong to slightly overpowered.

Charedent BarrageA charging ardent. Fine in a normal team, overpowered if there are 2 together, and easily broken in teams of 5.

Super Knight A tough, sticky, high damage knight. Strong.

Super Duper Knight Basically the same as super knight with items, making it far more broken.

Mora, the unkillable avenger Solid damage, while being neigh indestuctable. Overpowered, but not broken.

Swordburst Maximus At-Will Close Burst 3 that slide and prones. Protects allies with off actions. Strong, possibly over powered with the right party.

I do like the rules light approach with the ability for all classes to attempt actions like push, knockdown, etc, but it is true that with monsters having such low hit points, and average encounters lasting 1-3 rounds (for at least the first 5 levels in the sessions I've DMd so far) there are less tactics used by PCs.  

In fact, just last night, I played my first encounter as a player not a DM, and I experienced a situation where I felt the quickness of the combat inhibited my roleplaying.  I played a Halfling Rogue, and my party and I were defending a gate to city from 4 kobolds and a swamp drake (this might have been DM creation).   I was knocked out in the first round by a bad save on the swamp drake's acid breath attack.  The fighters took down the drake quickly, and the a bow fighter and cleric took out a couple of kobolds, so when I was revived, I realized there were only 2 more kobolds left.   Instead of trying to hide or sneak, or climb the tower to attempt to get around the back of the foes, or even drop down on top of them, I decided to stand up and use my sling to attack one of the kobolds.  I even said, "since they are only kobolds and this is going to be over soon, I won't waste time doing anything but firing my sling."   I enjoyed my tiny bit of play experience, and I realize that this was just a short encounter to get our feet wet, but looking back, it does emphasize how shorter combats really are not as tactically rich as longer combats.  

I don't think D&DNext is tactics light, it is just that with shorter combats, it is much less likely that players will engage in tactics.   If the monsters were a bit more robust, and average combats lasted a few rounds longer, we could use more tactics.    D&DNext should support both the quick fight and the longer more tactical battle so we can do both as needed/wanted.   I think we will be able to do both by the end of the playtest.

  

A Brave Knight of WTF - "Wielder of the Sword of Balance"

 

Rhenny's Blog:  http://community.wizards.com/user/1497701/blog

 

 

No. Opening things up opens things up (though always getting the DM's permission can slow things down). But that doesn't really change the tactics of hit first, hit hard.

Hit first, hit hard is normally good advice when fighting for one's life. You resort to tactics only when you need to obtain an advantage because straight offense isn't in your favor (kind of like in real life).

Tactics will become more meaningful as monsters become more meaningful (i.e. robust, challenging and scary). We're all aware that the designers are aware that monster numbers are off, and that they'll be fiddled with until the challenge is satisfactory.


I do like the rules light approach with the ability for all classes to attempt actions like push, knockdown, etc, but it is true that with monsters having such low hit points, and average encounters lasting 1-3 rounds (for at least the first 5 levels in the sessions I've DMd so far) there are less tactics used by PCs.

Agreed.

I don't think D&DNext is tactics light, it is just that with shorter combats, it is much less likely that players will engage in tactics.   If the monsters were a bit more robust, and average combats lasted a few rounds longer, we could use more tactics.    D&DNext should support both the quick fight and the longer more tactical battle so we can do both as needed/wanted.   I think we will be able to do both by the end of the playtest.

I think so too.

Danny

Misdirection and mindscrews. Like a good magician, I have the audience looking at where I want them to look, and not see the life-and-death situation they`ve willingly entered,

My experience in 3ed showed me the importance of pre-combat preparation: if the DM gets the party into a killzone, the encounter becomes far deadlier; if the party can control when and where they engage, they can cakewalk a tough fight. I think 5ed will be similar, in the importance of what happens before battle, instead of during it.

"Ah, the age-old conundrum. Defenders of a game are too blind to see it's broken, and critics are too idiotic to see that it isn't." - Brian McCormick

Misdirection and mindscrews. Like a good magician, I have the audience looking at where I want them to look, and not see the life-and-death situation they`ve willingly entered,

My experience in 3ed showed me the importance of pre-combat preparation: if the DM gets the party into a killzone, the encounter becomes far deadlier; if the party can control when and where they engage, they can cakewalk a tough fight. I think 5ed will be similar, in the importance of what happens before battle, instead of during it.



+1

That's how I like it. Or improv mid combat ideas. 

Not a big fan of system mechanics driving tactical play, I have 2 minutes between the end of my turn and the start of the my next, and in that time I like to think about things that I can do that are interacting with the environment in interesting ways. I don't do it for the narrative, I do it because it's more challenging for me to be creative on a timer. But also frustrating when you can't think of anything, or what you love doesn't have the desired effect. 

My mind is a deal-breaker.

Seems to me that "hit first, hit hard" is a principle of warfare rather than a tactic.  I can define the principle by what the system gives me.  Then I take that and develop my tactics.

"The Apollo moon landing is off topic for this thread and this forum. Let's get back on topic." Crazy Monkey

These are always true too:

1) Don't get hit  
2) Protect the squishies
3) Use the environment to your advantage   


Tactical depth requires that combat have the time to develop and the situation to be able to change over the course. In addition, you need a decent amount of powers that can change the course of the battle without ending it. Every PC should be able to have them, and there should be more than one. That just isn't present right now.
...whatever
I would argue that the only requirement to depth of Tactical Depth is the requirement that the situation changes each and every time.

"The Apollo moon landing is off topic for this thread and this forum. Let's get back on topic." Crazy Monkey

As much as I like quick combats, I think they are going to have to raise the hp of monsters to account for all of the expertise bonuses, and to encourage more tactical combats.  I think there are ample opportunities in D&DNext to play tactically, but with really short encounters there is less opportunity to play tactically.

Part of the problem is that monsters are just too squishy.  Average combats last 1-3 rounds.   In that amount of time, it is difficult to be tactical.  If all of the bad guys just go down quickly, the optimal tactic is to attack at range as quickly as possible.   That doesn't encourage movement or positioning.  

I like average encounters to be pretty balanced.   So if there are 4 PCs, I like an average encounter to be 4 PCs vs. 4 equal level opponents.  I think WoTC has to play with the numbers to see what the optimal amount of combat rounds an average fight should take.   From my experiences so far it seems as if an encounter like this will take only 1 round or 2 rounds at most.   I think it should take 3 to 4 rounds.

I would rather have fewer opponents that take a little longer to kill than have to throw many more opponents at the PCs.  I think more opponents slows the game down more than fewer opponents that are slightly tougher.    

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I find when DMing, that when the players have no idea how many HPs monsters have, the players are more mindful of their team's economy of force.

"The Apollo moon landing is off topic for this thread and this forum. Let's get back on topic." Crazy Monkey

I also find that the more straightforward math (less modifiers, bonuses, situational numbers, etc) leads to more critical consideration of options and capability because players are more involved in the story, aren't worried about all of the numbers impacting their contribution, and aren't anxious over 'being correct' with their math when their turn comes so they make more varied choices. -- This leads to more tactical depth at my tables as well.

Danny

A monster that dies before it does anything might as well have not had any offensively-oriented abilities at all. Next's monster design, while lurching vaguely in the right direction, doesn't understand Next's combat math. I haven't been doubling monster HP outright, but I have been giving them generically "more" HP when I'm starting to sense that Next's click-dead-click-dead-click-dead-click-dead nothing-we-do-matters default combat math is losing the players' interest.
Dwarves invented beer so they could toast to their axes. Dwarves invented axes to kill people and take their beer. Swanmay Syndrome: Despite the percentages given in the Monster Manual, in reality 100% of groups of swans contain a Swanmay, because otherwise the DM would not have put any swans in the game.
Obviously there are players who prefer quick combats and players who prefer interesting combats and 5e needs to try to cater to both.  The obvious thing to do, and something in line with 5e's aparent design philosophy, is to kick that distinction to the DM.  Present encounter- and monster- creation systems that allow the DM to design both quickie combats and elaborate ones.  

Quick combats could be limited to 'hits' instead of hp damage, for instance, and not make use of minutia of player abilities like ED or elaborate spell effects.  Monsters hit or failing saves are out of the fight and things move quickly.  

Elaborate combats could use monsters with hps (and plenty of 'em) and more varied abilities of their own, more detailed rules on movement, positioning, and terrain, and more attention payed to the details of maneuvers and spells.


 

 

 

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Obviously there are players who prefer quick combats and players who prefer interesting combats and 5e needs to try to cater to both.  The obvious thing to do, and something in line with 5e's aparent design philosophy, is to kick that distinction to the DM.  Present encounter- and monster- creation systems that allow the DM to design both quickie combats and elaborate ones.  

Quick combats could be limited to 'hits' instead of hp damage, for instance, and not make use of minutia of player abilities like ED or elaborate spell effects.  Monsters hit or failing saves are out of the fight and things move quickly.  

Elaborate combats could use monsters with hps (and plenty of 'em) and more varied abilities of their own, more detailed rules on movement, positioning, and terrain, and more attention payed to the details of maneuvers and spells.

The simplest way to do it is to list three separate HP numbers for threat level (low, medium, high), or offer a simplistic formula for manipulating the HP to obtain different threat levels (low=half, medium=listed, high=double). Toying with elaboration, capabilities, and other such minutia needlessly complicates something that can be addressed in a single line entry under a monster's stat block (i.e. HP 30/60/120).

Danny

Obviously there are players who prefer quick combats and players who prefer interesting combats and 5e needs to try to cater to both.  The obvious thing to do, and something in line with 5e's aparent design philosophy, is to kick that distinction to the DM.  Present encounter- and monster- creation systems that allow the DM to design both quickie combats and elaborate ones.  

Quick combats could be limited to 'hits' instead of hp damage, for instance, and not make use of minutia of player abilities like ED or elaborate spell effects.  Monsters hit or failing saves are out of the fight and things move quickly.  

Elaborate combats could use monsters with hps (and plenty of 'em) and more varied abilities of their own, more detailed rules on movement, positioning, and terrain, and more attention payed to the details of maneuvers and spells.

The simplest way to do it is to list three separate HP numbers for threat level (low, medium, high), or offer a simplistic formula for manipulating the HP to obtain different threat levels (low=half, medium=listed, high=double). Toying with elaboration, capabilities, and other such minutia needlessly complicates something that can be addressed in a single line entry under a monster's stat block (i.e. HP 30/60/120).

I think the simplest way would be with only 2 threat levels; non-HP (hits or failed saves 'kill'), and 'high'-hp.  Two is less than three, afterall, and eliminating rolling damage, trading damage for effects, or tracking spell durrations and conditions should greatly speed up the lower-tier fights.  That minutia could be dealt with in higher-tier fights where monsters stick around long enough for it to matter, and where it would make the fight more interesting than slowly chewing through nothing more than large blocks of hps.


 

 

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Obviously there are players who prefer quick combats and players who prefer interesting combats and 5e needs to try to cater to both.  The obvious thing to do, and something in line with 5e's aparent design philosophy, is to kick that distinction to the DM.  Present encounter- and monster- creation systems that allow the DM to design both quickie combats and elaborate ones.  

Quick combats could be limited to 'hits' instead of hp damage, for instance, and not make use of minutia of player abilities like ED or elaborate spell effects.  Monsters hit or failing saves are out of the fight and things move quickly.  

Elaborate combats could use monsters with hps (and plenty of 'em) and more varied abilities of their own, more detailed rules on movement, positioning, and terrain, and more attention payed to the details of maneuvers and spells.

The simplest way to do it is to list three separate HP numbers for threat level (low, medium, high), or offer a simplistic formula for manipulating the HP to obtain different threat levels (low=half, medium=listed, high=double). Toying with elaboration, capabilities, and other such minutia needlessly complicates something that can be addressed in a single line entry under a monster's stat block (i.e. HP 30/60/120).

I think the simplest way would be with only 2 threat levels; non-HP (hits or failed saves 'kill'), and 'high'-hp.  Two is less than three, afterall, and eliminating rolling damage, trading damage for effects, or tracking spell durrations and conditions should greatly speed up the lower-tier fights.  That minutia could be dealt with in higher-tier fights where monsters stick around long enough for it to matter, and where it would make the fight more interesting than slowly chewing through nothing more than large blocks of hps.

So choice boils down to minion or not minion? -- I could dig it.

Using my prposed stat block, we could represent that as 'HP 1/X'.

I think it's too trivializing for most creatures above the goblin or orc level, though. People are complaining about speed of combat and lack of tactical depth now, wait until they start wadimg throguh trolls with single swipes from wizards armed with daggers.

Danny



Using my prposed stat block, we could represent that as 'HP 1/X'.

I think it's too trivializing for most creatures above the goblin or orc level, though. People are complaining about speed of combat and lack of tactical depth now, wait until they start wadimg throguh trolls with single swipes from wizards armed with daggers.




I've been having some success lately in 4E introducing 'Elite Minions': thease are minions requiring 2 hits to die (or a single crit), with the first hit making them bloodied. 
I find them a very handy middle ground between 1hp minions (which we still use) and standard monsters.
Using hits is a simple way to run the storyline.  The player rolls hit and damage but the DM puts the battle in context with a particular result.  The hits I would tend to spread rangomly over the monsters.  Maybe one will be one hit, maybe another will be 4 hits. etc.

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Tony_V, mrpopstar and Uskglass....I think your ideas are really good.  I'd be happy to see this type of choice.   I especially like the hp split idea, Mr. popstar...weak, rugged and elite.     For groups that want full tactical games they can always use rugged or elite monsters.   For groups that want fast combat, use the weak monsters.   Many groups can also mix and match.   If there are weak, rugged and elite versions of each monster, we could fight the same monster type in different forms to add to variety too.   "Three orcs turn the corner heading straight for you.  You can tell they are not ordinary orcs.  They are taller and wider, their muscles bulge as they ready their great axes and charge."   Basically, this is what I do in my games anyway.  WotC might as well make it standard.

A Brave Knight of WTF - "Wielder of the Sword of Balance"

 

Rhenny's Blog:  http://community.wizards.com/user/1497701/blog

 

 

Tony_V, mrpopstar and Uskglass....I think your ideas are really good.  I'd be happy to see this type of choice.   I especially like the hp split idea, Mr. popstar...weak, rugged and elite.     For groups that want full tactical games they can always use rugged or elite monsters.   For groups that want fast combat, use the weak monsters.   Many groups can also mix and match.   If there are weak, rugged and elite versions of each monster, we could fight the same monster type in different forms to add to variety too.

Thanks.  Though, to be fair, it's not my idea.  I /think/ the first I heard of one-hit-kill enemies was the "mook" rules in BESM, though it might have been GURPs.  D&D was (typically) late to adopt the idea, finally doing so with 4e's "minions."  5e is trying to sneak it in, really.  With bounded accuracy and scaling damage, weaker monsters can become one-hit-kills as you level past them, while still being miss-able and able to hit PCs once in a while - though it's not quite the same as minions, since "damage on a miss" (more importantly, half damage on a save) can still kill 'em.

 

 

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A dm on these boards mentioned giving monsters max rolls on their hp/hd. That seems like a good way to easily buff up enemies so they can survive longer.
I've found 2-3 round combats to be more fun than 1-2 round combats. 2-3 rounds offers chances to mix up some tactics.
I'm sure others have mentioned adds. Additional monsters can make easy fights somewhat more tactical. In 4e, I used to give PCs a handful of monsters in an area. If they could efficiently and creatively kill them, the group down the hall wouldn't hear.
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I'm going to have to disagree with the "tactics is in the story" posters.  Tactics need mechanics, the only question is whether those mechanics are codified or up to the DM (or more precisely how much of them falls into either camp). Players that organize an elaborate ambush in unfavorable terrain will find there "tactics" wasted if there are no mechanical advantages to having surprise or to the brand of unfavorable terrain they've chosen.  Now you can have a rule that says "extra standard action before combat begins" and "each square of movement costs 2" or you can just have the DM say "PCs get advantage on their first attack," but without some kind of mechanic there can be no tactics.  Even if it's just that the monsters are crowded together and more vulnerable to the wizards' AoE, without an AoE mechanic it's meaningless (and no, that's not a stretch to put that down to mechanics, the point is that having different kinds of attacks adds tactical depth).  Now DM fiat mechanics can be enough, but mechanics are necessary. 
I'm going to have to disagree with the "tactics is in the story" posters.  Tactics need mechanics, the only question is whether those mechanics are codified or up to the DM (or more precisely how much of them falls into either camp). Players that organize an elaborate ambush in unfavorable terrain will find there "tactics" wasted if there are no mechanical advantages to having surprise or to the brand of unfavorable terrain they've chosen.  Now you can have a rule that says "extra standard action before combat begins" and "each square of movement costs 2" or you can just have the DM say "PCs get advantage on their first attack," but without some kind of mechanic there can be no tactics.  Even if it's just that the monsters are crowded together and more vulnerable to the wizards' AoE, without an AoE mechanic it's meaningless (and no, that's not a stretch to put that down to mechanics, the point is that having different kinds of attacks adds tactical depth).  Now DM fiat mechanics can be enough, but mechanics are necessary. 

The most tactical game I know, FATE, is one of the least mechanical.  When tactics can cause a combat to be run without so much as a single die roll, it is hard to argue that the mechanics are codified or up to the DM.

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