The Complete Newbie’s Non-Rulebook Glossary
Purpose of This Glossary Show
The purpose of this thread is simple: compile and provide definitions for a list of terms, acronyms, abbreviations, and forum-speak that are not found in rulebooks and that would be useful for new (and old) members of the 4e Character Optimization community to know. The goal is to build up this thread and then link it on the Complete Collection of Character Build Links.
This is NOT the D&D Forum Glossary Show
Please note that the "4e General Discussion" forum has a sticky thread titled "Unofficial Dungeons and Dragons Forum Glossary" that is an incredibly detailed resource. This thread differs in scope and focus to more accurately reference terms that concern the Character Optimization community specifically. Sure, there is overlap between the more exhaustive resource and this thread, but we have terms below that they don't and they have gobs and gobs of terms that we don't need to define here. In short, this thread is more of an "Idiot's Guide" in terms of conciseness and applicability to the 4e Character Optimization community.
How to Use This Glossary Show
If you are unfamiliar with these terms, please find their definitions below and then read posts for a while to see how people use them. Remember: it is generally ineffective to use a lot of geek-babble just to use it, and it is always okay to use the full definitions listed below in place of the terms. Please note that some CharOp handbooks (like Nausicaa's awesome handbook for the Wizard class) may use terminology that is more specific to those handbooks. Finally, when using any of the terms below, the three most important components are context, context, context. Consider this "parlor" metaphor by the philosopher Kenneth Burke Show
Imagine that you enter a parlor. You come late. When you arrive, others have long preceded you, and they are engaged in a heated discussion, a discussion too heated for them to pause and tell you exactly what it is about. In fact, the discussion had already begun long before any of them got there, so that no one present is qualified to retrace for you all the steps that had gone before. You listen for a while, until you decide that you have caught the tenor of the argument; then you put in your oar. Someone answers; you answer him; another comes to your defense; another aligns himself against you, to either the embarrassment or gratification of your opponent, depending upon the quality of your ally's assistance. However, the discussion is interminable. The hour grows late, you must depart. And you do depart, with the discussion still vigorously in progress. (The Philosophy of Literary Form, p. 110-111)
How This Glossary Gets Assembled: Please post any definitions you think would helpful for members of the Character Optimization community to know. Also, please speak up if you have an alternate definition. I will update and organize the first post (or posts) of this thread as often as I can to keep the list up-to-date. As you may notice, some of the definitions below are directly lifted from different posts (in this and other threads). Blatant plagiarism is the sincerest form of flattery. Thanks to everyone posting!
This is more forum-speak but YMMV=Your mileage may vary
OPR - Once per round
EONT - end of next turn
SONT - start of next turn
AIP: Arcane Implement Proficiency
DIS: Dual Implement Spellcaster
I'm sure I'll think of more.
I've Seen BM also equalling bloodmage however, but this tends to be reserved for Wizards and the PP discusion. Which reminds me
MAD=Multiple Attribute Dependency
SAD=Single Attribute Dependency
Thanks for the initial flurry of definitions! I'll update more tomorrow. Cheers!
MC : Multiclass.
The lock entry should also note the hellock, starlock, conlock etc prefixes. On that note, Straladin, Chaladin, Baladin for the Paladin stat focuses.
InspLord, TacLord, BraveLord, RecLord for the various Warlord builds from PHB and MP. I haven't seen abbreviations for the Insightful and Skirmishing Warlords.
Similarly, Orbizard, Staffizard, Wandizard.
You forgot LazyLord, t. :P (A Warlord specialised in, or built completely with, powers that allow others to attack without having to attack herself.)
On that, you should also include Lazy - there are other builds capable of the same idea, the Warlord is just the best at it, and most common.
Also: Healic - Healing specialised Cleric.
This list is coming along smashingly. I've even learned a few things myself tonight, so already I know this list is helping me! Please keep posting. But I am really going to bed now. I'll update more tomorrow. Cheers!
LSM - The average skill level in class and power design for a member of the current D&D R&D team.
Lady_Auralla, we get the joke, but please keep such a comment out of what is actually a very useful thread and a very good idea.
My compliments, Valenkosh, for starting it.
Good idea for a thread.
I think MAD and SAD need a few words of explanation beyond just spelling out what the acronym means. Also, Dazing Rebuke Syndrome is a term that often comes up (albeit not abbreviated) that could be explained here. Also, I think the acronym is NAD (with NADs as a plural), not NADS.
Suggested additions: RBA, BA, Tomeizard, RAI, CS, DPE, IAoP, OPT, LSM, HTH, PEACH.
(if you don't know what any of these mean, then I'm probably wrong about suggesting them in the first place )
I have some of them in my wizard handbook, here's the list (probably you'll have to adapt some of them):
AoE: area of effect, a spell that covers more than one square, usually a burst or a blast
BA: Basic Attack (ranged or melee)
Banish: an effect that removes the target from the game
BBEG: big bad evil guy, the "boss"
Blaster: a build that values damage more than pure control
Buff/Debuff: empower an ally/weaken an enemy
CA: combat advantage
DIS: dual implement spellcaster feat
DPR: damage per round, valuable for blaster builds
Dumpstat: a stat that is not important for the build
ED: Epic Destiny
Friendly: usually an area effect that targets only enemies. Very valuable, in my opinion generally this raises the rating of a power by one colour.
Gish: a mix between a pure caster and a melee warrior
Kicker: an extra effect based on your implement specialization, written in the inferior part of the spell. Only few powers, expecially from Arcane Power, actually possess a kicker.
Imposer: orb of imposition user.
MAD: Multiple Attribute Dependency (no, not the case of the wizard, generally)
MBA: Melee Basic Attack (useful for enchanter and gish builds)
MC: multiclass, often shortened with a slash ( "/" )
Nerf: a change in the feature that reduces its power
Nova: when you unleash a great number of powers/damage in a little time
OA: opportunity action
PP: paragon path
Unfriendly: an area effect that targets indiscriminately friends and enemies (creatures). Contrary to common knowledge of the class, this kind of power is the minority of the Wizard power list.
I think one thing to watch out for is that some definitions are not common. When someone uses BM, they're often doing it in a thread where they keep saying Battlemind a lot. If someone says BM out of the blue, it doesn't mean a whole lot(and honestly, shouldn't mean much)
This is the context that some Newbie could look at this list, decide that they have to say something like this. "I'm planning on playing a BM. My DM throws a lot of Mooks and Mobs at us. I'm thinking KAM? Does that make sense in that context?"
A few more:
/ = multiclass
| = hybrid
RAI = Rules as Intended
CB = Character Builder
(and possibly my abbreviation - it doesn't get tossed off as much as LDB, though)
RC for Rules Compendium, which is generally a better rules reference than the PHB these days. While it's a far less common use, a note that PP can mean Power Points would probably be good. OA is sometimes used as Opportunity Action in addition to Opportunity Attack; OAction and OAttack can be used to differentiate between them.
AoO Attack of Opportunity; see: OA.
WrathVoker: Wrathful Invoker
Nova, Nova'ing: using many resources to deliberately finishing an enemy in 1 round.
MwaO: Mommy was an Orc, a CharOp forum handbook writer.
CO: Character Optimization
Updated the first post to include suggested material.
I've usually used "kicker" to refer to anything the power does other than damage, not just a build-specific change.
I would add:
OoE for Oath of Enmity
O-assassin for the original assassin (opposed to the Executioner)
Crit-fisher for a character designed to have high chances to score a critical hit
And following Kiltpads remark here above, somebody uses "rider" instead of "Kicker".
Been hanging aroudn CharOp since not long after 4e came out and I finally know what PEACH means! Thanks!
I think taking some props from MC-Drowbanes Nova handbook on the definition of Nova and the differences between Encounter and Daily nova would be useful, as many of the top tier builds calculate one or both of these novas.
As an aside, I too support this effort Valenkosh. Props!
I just had a forum discussion with someone who didn't know what ping-pong meant, so I suppose that would be a good addition. Possibly also BS for BladeSinger, and TO for theoretical optimization.
AFAIK Blaster is not just a damage build, but a ranged and implement-using damage build. I think defining "debuff" as "weaken" is confusing, because "weaken" has an explicit in-game meaning. I thought HTH means "hope that helps"? I've never heard people use it to refer to that warlock power.
TBH I've never heard of the terms Baladin, Banish, Imposer, OAction, OAttack, or Kicker before. Are you sure they're common enough to list here? Most threads I've seen use "rider" for what is listed as "kicker" here, whereas "kicker" is a MtG term.
Awesome feedback, everyone! I need to leave now to drive a 12-hr road trip, but I will update this later tonight (central time) to incorporate the suggestions and corrections mentioned in the last several posts. Thanks!
I've seen OP used for Over Powered; ie, that power is OP, it should be nerfed
Umber Hulk - short for Umber Shadow Hulk, not the weenie version. Most difficult CORE monster to beat at paragon levels, without the DM (fiat) making it really stupid.
aDMg - short for awaken_D_M_golem; short for awaken_Dungeon_Master_golem; short for wtf was that ?!
T.O. - short for Theoretical Optimization; short for run kiddies, run !!
SM = Swordmage
BM = Battlemind
BS = Bladesinger
DB = dragonborn
Ossassin = original assassin
Essassin = executioner assassin
D-Born as well.
E- and O-(class) for example E-Cleric and O-Cleric - falling out of favour now that the Templar, Arcanist, Marshall etc names are in use, but will show up in old posts. or people who dislike the names for thematic reasons. Means Essentials and Original variants of the class in question.
I have now added a link to this in the Primer, as I feel it is of use to everyone in the forums. I'll add it to the collection sticky soon as well, if someone hasn't already.
"Control" and "enable" should probably be added, since they have different meanings in the context of 4e than they do in normal usage. "TO" should probably have more explanation, since a true newbie won't understand the difference between theoretical and practical optimization.
@RuinsFate: Thanks! I really appreciate it.
I removed Banish and Kicker because I hadn't really heard of them outside Nausicaa's wizard handbook.
I also removed OAction and OAttack because I haven't seem them much either.
I've left in Baladin and Imposer because I do recall seeing them outside their respective CharOp handbooks.
But I can be talked out of those decisions. Thoughts?
Also, I'm on the fence about including abbreviations for forum members (like LDB, MwaO, aDMg, Mello, etc.). On one hand, you sometimes see abbreviations of these guys' user names in discussion threads. But on the other hand, where do we draw the line as to who to reference in the Glossary and who not to?
Also, any other votes on Umber Hulk?
I'm personally of the opinion we either include all the regulars or none - even the mighty LDB. Preferably none, or it leads to debate on where to draw the line and is really more about promoting a person than being a useful term.
OAction and OAttack could be put in as a subnote of the OA entry.
I've seen Kilpatds use Kicker as well. Kicker/Rider are usually referring to the same thing
I don't use kicker a lot, for instance, but i've seen LDB using it.
Banish is used basically in 3 handbooks: cleric, wizard and warlock. These are the only class (IIRC) that have "removed from play" powers.
DC - Divine Challenge / Difficulty Class
DS - Divine Sanction / Darksun
FR - Forgotten Realms
AEDU - At-will, Encounter, Daily, Utility
FRW - Fortitude, Reflex, Will
RoB - Rain of Blows
SoB - Storm of Blows/Blades
RoS - Rain of Steel
TS - Twin Strike
MM - Monster Manual / Magic Missile
MMO - Massively multiplayer online games
Sticky - defender mark keeping target close
Math fix feats - collective name for expertise, superior defense feats, and/or improved defenses
"Intvoker", "Malvoker" and "Convoker", in addition to "Wrathvoker", which you already have, are used to refer to invokers with Int as a secondary, with the covenant of Malediction, and with Con as a secondary, respectively. (As with -lord, -voker is a reasonably productive suffix.) They might be contextually obvious enough (the shorthand is rarely used outside of discussions of invokers in particular) that they may not really need to be included, but they're around in invoker guides.
In my mind, LDB stands out as an acronym not just because of the status of the referent, but because he's genuinely referred to that way a lot. Random acronym'd versions of other prominant posters' names don't make as much sense because they just aren't as globally used.
IMO (IMHO) = in my opinion (in my humble opinion).
OK. Banish and Kicker are back. OAction and OAttack folded into the entry for OA. Added suggestions from the last few posts.
@tylara67: Good ideas. Check out the new entries for Control and Enable and TO. Would you add/subtract anything? Would anyone else suggest anything for those three entries?
Also, how would someone define "bag of rats"? Or is "bag of rats" even applicable anymore?
So, one vote for no names of forum members. One vote for keeping LDB in. Other votes?
Edit: didn't mean to do a full quote.
Frost cheese - using a frost weapon with wintertouched and lasting frost for permanent combat advantage and +5 damage.
Radiant mafia - a party of characters doing radiant damage with a morninglord giving all enemies vuln 10 radiant.
Healerdin - a cha-based paladin specialising more in healing than in defendering.
Ah, I have never played WoW. Must just be the MT comunity and my flgs.
Stunlock - a controller that can effectively lock down a monster for several turns (e.g. stun on a hit or miss and then prevent them from saving).
Poach - to gain a power from another class through multiclassing, Hybriding and/or feats
Just a remark: Oath of Enmity is an avenger's class feature (not an invoker's).
I don't think that anything involving "Umber Hulk" is a common forum phrase. I've not seen FRW used a lot, nor RoB (since its nerf), SoB, RoS, or Healerdin.
Regarding math fix feats (or feat taxes), I don't think there's a universally-agreed definition about which feats, exactly, qualify as such. Some people think it's just Expertise, some people think it also includes Improved Defenses, and some people include e.g. Improved Initiative and Melee Training in there. Point is, you probably should define the term without explicitly listing which feats are (supposedly) meant.
Bag of rats should really be in here, yes. I think forum usernames should not be.
Definition of bag of rats? Taking a power that gives a benefit when you hit an enemy, and using that against creatures that are not a credible threat (such as a tiny rodent, or your ally) to get the benefit without risk.
I'll update the glossary to account for the last few posts when I finish my morale-destroying road trip late tonight. Thanks again for all the participation!
K_G's got it, on bag-o-rats. Boo about the ego alert forum poster names (wink).
Bag-Of-Rats ... literally the case in 3e. Bag full of tied up rats. Free Action Draw one. Free Action drop it. Action X stab the Rat. Action Y gained from the exchange. Repeat for more cheese. Banned in 4e by the legit target rule, early in the DMG.
... You put a Troll or similar regenerator, on a Tensers all tied up. Probably stick a sock in it's mouth, so it doesn't make quite so much noise. Still you can't surprise monsters, and the Troll gives away your position. Hidden BBEG "could" (wink,wink) buff the Troll to jump up from the Tensers to stab you. See it's a legit target with real costs. So you stab the Troll over and over. Don't forget to stab the Troll. It's fun. And that's the primary rule isn't it ?!
Updated. Added suggested terms from last few posts. User names are out. Some other lesser-used terms I've just noted with "less common."
No glossary is ever totally complete, but this one looks like it contains enough terms to be helpful to new forum members (and those who have been around a few years, e.g. me).
Please keep posting terms if you think of them, but I'm fine if we let this glossary simmer for a while. In a few months, we can revisit it and take out unnecessary terms and add yet others.
@yargon: RuinsFate was kind enough to link this glossary to his "Beginner's Primer to CharOp" and to the "Complete Collection of Character Build Links" - both of which are stickied. That's good enough for me.
Thanks again to everyone who posted!
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