Results for tag: 4e
Posted by: The_Jester on Apr 10, 2013 at 07:42:53 PM
Let's start by paraphrasing Winston Churchill: hitpoints are the worst possible system for tracking health except all others that have been tried.
Hitpoints are terrible for verisimilitude and an awful reflection of reality. They’re also not particularly good at emulating cinematic combat.
This old argument has come up again and again (and again and again), most recently resurfacing on various message boards due to the continued warlord debates and the option of martial healing. This seems like a topical discussion to write about.
Are Hitpoints Fatigue or Health?
And no. Here’s an amusing flowchart on the topic.
Posted by: The_Jester on Mar 27, 2013 at 04:18:36 PM
This article drifts into an esoteric aspect of worldbuilding. Some articles in this series are neutral in regards to Bottom-Up or Top-Down worldbuilding, applying equally to both. Then there’s trade and economics, a subject that quickly gets finicky and OCD even when building a Top-Down world for mass consumption.
Regardless, it can be handy to know some of the major trade routes of the region as well has how towns and nations support themselves. It’s also useful to keep in mind the economics of the world and the game.
As this is such an esoteric topic, I’ll be covering a couple topics at once to keep things short.
Below are links to the other chapters in this series.
Posted by: The_Jester on Feb 16, 2013 at 03:59:02 PM
With the design of 5th edition still underway, I wanted to rant a little about the ability (or rather the current inability) to add PC classes to monsters. Being able to make an orc into an orc fighter is pretty vital to my enjoyment of the game, mostly because making a classed creature equates with the DM’s ability to make NPC opponents.
This is a topic with some baggage, which needs to be discussed and acknowledged: past attempts have led to preconceived assumptions of what mixing classes and monsters means.
What Has Come Before
Almost no monsters had classes in the first couple editions. You had monsters and you had PCs and the rules were sketchy when you tried to make an encounter with say human fighters or an evil necromancer. You could add classes to some humanoid monsters,...
Posted by: The_Jester on Dec 26, 2012 at 06:50:40 PM
It's review time. I refer of course to the end of December surprise of one last playtest package before the end of the year. This would be our fourth real package, excluding the small updates with added an extra class or two to the mix. This time we have the full 1-20 level range of for five classes.
It seems like as good a time as any to really look at the playtest package and the playtest process in general.
Wizards of the Coast has been managing this public playtest for roughly seven months, since the first package was released...
Posted by: The_Jester on Dec 12, 2012 at 09:24:21 AM
Everyone’s time comes eventually. Eventually bad tactics, story, or cold dice kill a character. I’ve lost a couple and I’ve killed a couple.
But what happens next? I’m not talking about the long tunnel with the bright light or passage to the Shadowfell, but what happens at the table. A character just died and there are two or three hours left in the session. What do you do?
What Came BeforeThis is the spiritual follow-up to an earlier blog where I mused about killing PCs, but did not really touch on the follow-up. This seemed like an omission, which I now correct.
Below are some options and discussion on what to do when a PC dies at your table.
The baseline action for a PC dying unexpectedly is that player sits around bored, watching events unfold....
Posted by: The_Jester on Oct 18, 2012 at 04:33:29 PM
I’ve written a fair bit about skills in 4e, and how I personally think the math behind skills is a little shakier than, well, anything else in the edition. You can find some of my earlier blogs here and here. One I’d specifically like to point out is this on reinventing skills in 4e.
It might seem a little late to be thinking about house rules for 4th Edition, but I don’t believe so. Not everyone will be making the switch from 4e to 5e, and even those that do might decide to play the occasional short adventure or micro-campaign in 4e. No matter of the final quality of 5e, there will be some adventures and stories that might be better served by 4e. And if the system can be made a little more playable that’s only a bonus.
Here’s a quick summary...
Posted by: The_Jester on Oct 4, 2012 at 04:11:28 PM
Let’s talk about the upcoming changes to the Forgotten Realms. This isn’t really a topical subject, being some time after the announcement at GenCon and some time before the novels and adventures are released. I had planned it earlier but kept delaying this piece to write other blogs. Oops.
If you hadn’t heard, the forthcoming revamp of the Realms was revealed at the GenCon Keynote address and mentioned in a couple panels on the Realms. They’re doing an event called “the Sundering” which is designed to both transition the Realms to 5e but also bring the Forgotten Realms back to basics.
Yeah... I’m experiencing a little déjà vu here.
The Nuking the Realms
For 4e, the Forgotten Realms was altered via a trilogy of modules published...
Posted by: The_Jester on Sep 24, 2012 at 12:17:11 AM
I was really excited by the creative design space offered by the 5e fighter’s expertise dice mechanic, but I was much more interested by the improvisational space it created. It was a fluid, flexible mechanic, a spendable yet rechargeable resource designed to be burned for varied combat actions. It was as simple as the player wanted it to be and changed depending on desired role: it kept damage off the tank, added damage to the brute, and could be used for mob control by the defender.
But there’s a problem. No sooner was it created but content and options were heaped on the character and the potential to improv was removed as room to stunt shrunk. Is this an issue? Maybe. It depends on the type of game you like. D&D has always been a very codified game with rules for everything...
Posted by: The_Jester on Sep 14, 2012 at 08:40:05 PM
The is the first part on my new series on world building. In the introduction, I discussed Top-Down and Bottom-Up design, as well as some of the pros and cons of each.
Today I’m going to discuss “The Hook”.
Below a links to the previous chapters in this series
Part 13: Starting Zone
Part 14: Player's Guide
Every new campaign world needs a “hook”: a concept or theme on which to base the world and differentiate...
Posted by: The_Jester on Sep 10, 2012 at 06:30:31 PM
This is the start of a new series discussing world building and the creation of campaign settings.
With 4th Edition winding down and many new campaigns looming on the horizon, ready to start when 5th Edition officially launches (or there's enough playtesting material) I imagine many DMs are thinking about where they'll set their campaign, what world they want to play in, and the nuances of creating their own campaign setting.
This blog series is designed to offer advice and suggestions on the art of world building. Each blog will discuss an element of design, and I’ll also demonstrate the advice by loosely designing a brand new world just for this blog.
Below is a list of chapters (to be edited into links when I continue this series)