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What is your preferred system?

Any D&D/D20
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Author Topic: Dungeons & Dragons / PNP games thread: The Barren Snowflake Wastes  (Read 566244 times)

Telgin

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Re: Dungeons & Dragons / PNP games thread: The Barren Snowflake Wastes
« Reply #8685 on: September 13, 2021, 01:52:30 pm »

Mentioning becoming a ruler and controlling a realm reminds me that one of the things I've wanted for a while was a tabletop game that simulated kingdom or empire management as its main focus.  Something where a few people could play over months or whatever to have a set of empires evolve and compete with each other.  I'm not sure any RPG would really fit the bill, but I saw at least one PbTA inspired system that handled it.  I can't remember the name, but it was focused on post apocalyptic clans, where I'm more interested in either typical fantasy or space opera sci-fi.

I've considered trying to make a system of my own, but therein lies madness.
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Cthulhu

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Re: Dungeons & Dragons / PNP games thread: The Barren Snowflake Wastes
« Reply #8686 on: September 13, 2021, 03:11:17 pm »

Reign is like that, there's also Pendragon which is ancient and I'm not sure if it's actually any good.

ACKS isn't completely tied around that, but it's a big part.  It tries to recreate the old old Arneson stuff, the adventuring aspects of D&D were basically a way to generate context for wargame battles.  ACKS has really extensive kingdom stats stuff and all classes have some means of creating a larger organization once they hit level 11, attracting followers and soldiers and such.  The setting is late antiquity with a fantasy Roman empire in terminal decline and the idea is as you get to higher levels you'll band together and carve off a chunk of this empire, using your own resources and skills to protect it both from the imperial forces and the encroaching darkness.

I think it's important to start early so you have the full context for what you're doing but you could probably use it as a pure kingdom management game with modifications, the rules for that are very detailed.
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Kagus

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Re: Dungeons & Dragons / PNP games thread: The Barren Snowflake Wastes
« Reply #8687 on: September 14, 2021, 04:57:59 pm »

A Tempest Cleric 2/Scribe Wizard (lots) can, theoretically, change Meteor Swarm to all-lightning damage and then just set it to maximum damage at 240 (save for half).

...definitely not optimal/maximal damage values, the thought just occurred to me and I think it's kinda nifty.


EDIT: Why is there a Rogue subclass that Rangers better than a Ranger does?

ijub

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Re: Dungeons & Dragons / PNP games thread: The Barren Snowflake Wastes
« Reply #8688 on: September 15, 2021, 01:36:07 pm »

Spoiler: Druids (click to show/hide)
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Loud Whispers

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Re: Dungeons & Dragons / PNP games thread: The Barren Snowflake Wastes
« Reply #8689 on: September 16, 2021, 02:06:11 pm »

EDIT: Why is there a Rogue subclass that Rangers better than a Ranger does?
Because rangers and monks both live in the shelf for classes that are supposed to be jacks of all trades but actually end up being overly specialised whilst terrible at their specialisation. Whereas things like rogues and wizards are are supposed to be specialists but actually masters of all trades

Grim Portent

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Re: Dungeons & Dragons / PNP games thread: The Barren Snowflake Wastes
« Reply #8690 on: September 16, 2021, 05:51:36 pm »

I wouldn't say 5e rangers are terrible at their specialisation, it's just a really specific and boring specialty to have.

Shooting things, stabbing things, having a pet, spellcasting, being mobile, none of those are actually the ranger's shtick, their shtick is just 'is pretty handy in a few chosen environments.' Predictably this turns out to be rather dull in practice, and the same general character ideas can be better represented with another class or by a multiclass.

Nine times out of ten I'd rather be a rogue, fighter or bard even if I want to play a character who hangs out in forests and generally acts 'rangery'.
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MrRoboto75

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Re: Dungeons & Dragons / PNP games thread: The Barren Snowflake Wastes
« Reply #8691 on: September 16, 2021, 06:21:19 pm »

their shtick is just 'is pretty handy in a few chosen environments.'

>Ranger is the Aquaman of the party
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Rolan7

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Re: Dungeons & Dragons / PNP games thread: The Barren Snowflake Wastes
« Reply #8692 on: September 16, 2021, 06:32:32 pm »

Yeah but remember how cool Aragorn was when he duel-wielded bows though?

We never ended up using Rangers when we played 5e, so I don't remember how they work now.  In 3.5 my group constantly made jokes at the class's expense, but I eventually played a decently successful one once.  Sure their spell list is low-power and very limited... but they get full BAB.  They don't have the feat flexibility of a fighter, but they do get useful bonus feats specific to their chosen style.  Their animal companion is extremely fragile, but they don't lose experience points when it dies like a familiar.

Then uniquely they get Camouflage and hide-in-plain-sight, some flavorful and sometimes handy skills, and what my group mockingly called "hatred bonuses" against favored foes.  Of course it lacks the infinite flexibility and power of a full spellcaster like a druid, it's 3.5.  It just compares reasonably well to a fighter or rogue, with each of the three having different combat and out-of-combat niches.  Full BAB with *any* spellcasting is pretty sweet.  Low spells-per-day isn't so bad when wands and scrolls exist (and you don't need Use Magic Device for the Ranger spells, so get that wand of Cure Light Wounds and go nuts)

And unlike a Paladin you don't have to get in morality arguments unless you wanna :P

But yeah I don't know how they are in 5e.  I like 5e a lot, but most "martial" classes already feel like hybrid spellcasters already.  It's a choice I really enjoy, but I'm not sure where it leaves the ranger (or monk, for that matter).  I played 5e paladin for a while and had a blast, though I think I cast more spells as an arcane fighter heh.
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Kagus

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Re: Dungeons & Dragons / PNP games thread: The Barren Snowflake Wastes
« Reply #8693 on: September 17, 2021, 03:53:04 am »

Ranger was pretty great in Incursion though, as you could just start the game off with having a Night Hunter as your animal companion.

Flying, large (and rideable), and with a ludicrous 180' infravision that you got to share while riding the beast. Plus it had multiattack, and with some mounted feats giving it an auto-trip and AoOs on tripped enemies, it was actually pretty hilarious in combat in addition to being an incredible utility in the dark and craggy underground.

Loud Whispers

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Re: Dungeons & Dragons / PNP games thread: The Barren Snowflake Wastes
« Reply #8694 on: September 20, 2021, 04:38:58 am »

I wouldn't say 5e rangers are terrible at their specialisation, it's just a really specific and boring specialty to have.

Shooting things, stabbing things, having a pet, spellcasting, being mobile, none of those are actually the ranger's shtick, their shtick is just 'is pretty handy in a few chosen environments.' Predictably this turns out to be rather dull in practice, and the same general character ideas can be better represented with another class or by a multiclass.

Nine times out of ten I'd rather be a rogue, fighter or bard even if I want to play a character who hangs out in forests and generally acts 'rangery'.
I suppose there's also the problem of monks and rangers needing DM assistance to shine. Not much point being a ranger if your party always exclusively goes outside your favoured environments and you never even touch the wilderness. I will remember fondly the time where my monk character really got a rare chance to shine when our whole party was put in prison; suddenly unarmed fighting, catching arrows & fall damage negation came very in handy

scriver

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Re: Dungeons & Dragons / PNP games thread: The Barren Snowflake Wastes
« Reply #8695 on: September 20, 2021, 06:05:00 am »

fall damage negation came very in handy

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Kagus

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Re: Dungeons & Dragons / PNP games thread: The Barren Snowflake Wastes
« Reply #8696 on: September 20, 2021, 06:41:58 am »

Speaking of DM assistance, I came across a delightful grapple jump build that is very straightforward and naturally requires a lot of leeway in being allowed to actually put it all together and use it.

Simic Hybrid Beast Barbarian, level 6 and up. That's it. Take Manta Glide and Grappling Appendages as the mutations, and if you really want to crank it up a notch, get a buddy or a feat to give yourself a casting of Jump (it's not concentration, so it's not broken by raging).

Enjoy being able to bonus-action grapple after an attack, then add the *total* of an Athletics check (with advantage, because raging) to your jump height, triple that with the Jump spell, and easily yeet yourself into the stratosphere with your unwilling passengers. This admittedly kinda caps out at 80', and that's only if you spend an action to Dash, but you're still easily hitting 40' on a normal turn. So that's 4d6 falling damage, or 8d6 (hey, it's a fireball!) on the Dash turns, and you just negate all the fall damage to yourself because it's under 100'.


I mean, sure, that character probably isn't going to exist anywhere outside of theorycrafting due to needing to 1) Be allowed to roll a Simic Hybrid Barbarian, and 2) Completely fart in the face of common sense because of the lack of real rules surrounding moving/jumping while grappling...

But it's still a fun thought!

Loud Whispers

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Re: Dungeons & Dragons / PNP games thread: The Barren Snowflake Wastes
« Reply #8697 on: September 20, 2021, 07:48:00 am »

Grappling is fun. Just the fact that it's useful for all characters endears the action to me; I have a frontline centaur sorceror character which is very squishy but has 16 STR and 16 CHA. Their melee attack alone or cantripts are pretty abysmal, and I get by the suboptimal stats by casting buffs or environmental spells. But when those rare moments come along where suddenly you can grapple and drag something with insane carry capacity from your heavy build & brawny feat, and it all becomes worth it.

Last session was like that. We were facing off against a vampire lord of a blood casino. Our paladin player got charmed by the vampire lord and decided to defect to him (the DM was very specific in his wording; the paladin player was not dominated and was free to act however he would provided he took no hostile action against the vampire. He decided to join the vampire. I was not amused; not because he had betrayed us, but because his character was so inconsistent - alternating between uni professor and edgy nazi scientist whenever he felt like it).

The vampire lord was already a significant threat but with the addition of a paladin giving him +5 to all saves and on demand healing, it was looking like it was going to be TPK. But by grappling the vampire lord, whose lack of thicc quads or biceps was suddenly startlingly apparent, my hasted out grapplesorcerer managed to drag him with a jump spell over the paladin and over a river of magma where my wizard and warlock allies were waiting. Our paladin player tried to misty step over to assist the vampire lord but a dispel magic from our wizard stopped him mid stride, causing him to fall into the magma below.

This paladin player was also carrying many explosives. Yet due to the DM giving him two "get out of jail free" magic items which would put you out of instant death and into death saving throws, or out of death saving throws and into 1 HP, he unfortunately was not instantly killed. This also irritated me, because one of my characters died to one shot disintegration after trying to save his character (who decided to charge into the enemy on his own despite our carefully thought out plan). The fact that he had two such items and didn't give me one was grating. The fact that he wasted two of them to assist another one of our enemies irritated me more.

Our paladin player was assisting this vampire lord so he could get the vampire lord's chainsword. Because of course our edgy paladin who doesn't even believe in any god or moral system (why even play a paladin if you have no moral code? it's like playing a druid who doesn't even know nature exists), he just believes in spiky leather, flaming whips and chainswords. The setting is light fantasy with 17th century window dressing. I make sure to drag this vampire lord and his chainsword close to some little box of WMDs and I set it off with erupting earth. Vampire is erased from existence. So is his chainsword. Paladin player is sad about this loss. Grappling saves the day yet again.

Grim Portent

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Re: Dungeons & Dragons / PNP games thread: The Barren Snowflake Wastes
« Reply #8698 on: September 27, 2021, 07:28:37 am »

Weird train of thought. At what point does a creature polymorphed into a loaf of bread turn back?

Bread is an object, and objects have HP, so logically it turns back at 0 HP like normal for 5e polymorph. But at what point is bread at 0 HP?

Does cutting a slice off put the loaf at 0? Does it hit 0 when fully sliced? Does it have to be eaten or burnt to hit 0? What if it gets covered in mold and rots into mush?
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IcyTea31

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Re: Dungeons & Dragons / PNP games thread: The Barren Snowflake Wastes
« Reply #8699 on: September 27, 2021, 08:45:57 am »

Objects (capital O) are discrete, so presumably it hits 0 HP when it ceases to be a "loaf", by paradox of the heap.

Is a bread loaf with a single toast slice cut off, still a loaf? Probably.
Is a loaf with many slices cut off, still a loaf? That's fuzzy.
Is a loaf cut in half with a single cut, still a loaf? Nah, at that point I'd recategorize the halves as discrete "halves of a loaf".

A loaf with a single spot of mold is no longer food, destroying it, whereas a little bit of fire only makes it delicious, but too much destroys it. The rules say some materials may take more or less damage from certain damage types, so it makes sense.
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