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  • One of the magic items given in the Dungeon Master's Guide is a "Ring of X-Ray Vision." How do people in any normal setting know about x-rays?
    • It's just called X-ray because X-ray is the nearest English for the "Common" word for "magic stuff that lets you see through other stuff".
    • It's just a ring that allows you to see through solid objects. It's more like a Hollywoodesque X-Ray ring. So, yeah, a "Ring of X-Ray Vision" isn't with X-Ray. But it's way cooler to say than a "Ring of Transparent Vision"
      • How about a Ring of Deepsight? ...too New Agey?
      • Translation Convention, whatever word means "seeing through stuff" in D&D Common translates most easily to "X-ray" in English
      • People question the use of "X-Rays" but no one questions why a ring not goggles is used.
    • So players will have an idea on what it would do and what to associate it with? For that matter, why are the rulebooks written in the modern day language it's printed it in? It should be printed in Old common.
      • They print it in modern day language so you don't have to keep logging on to google every five minutes.
  • How is acid an energy? I can get fire, electricity, sonic, and even cold... but acid?
    • That was explained at one point in an article. The explanation is more that acid leaves injuries that are more akin to the other energy types than anything else, so it's sorted as an 'energy' for convenience sake. Plus, it gives something to be an earth-associated 'energy' type.
  • The existence of the Wall of the Faithless just bugs me. As does the fact that apparently even people whose only "fault" was never hearing about the existence of the gods, like babies, go there...
    • Fortunately, that only existed in the Forgotten Realms.
    • And it seems to be gone as of 4th edition...
    • I think it's kind of cool, actually, it certainly gives practical value to religion.
    • Eh, no. Those who go into the Wall are those who choose not to worship any gods.
      • Objection! The Third Edition guide for the Forgotten Realms clearly stated that those who pay only lip service to the gods go to the Wall of the Faithless
    • In the end, the Wall was simply a (cynical and arguably contemptible but logical) consequence of the Gods Need Prayer Badly nature of the Realms. Of course the gods wouldn't want the idea that mortals might not have to worship them to catch on when they depend on that worship for their own power! (Then again, the blunt threat of the Wall can easily lead to the Broken Aesop that the so-called 'gods' of the setting are in fact nothing but supernatural parasites of the highest order...)
    • It comes down to this: do you wish this fate on Valygar Cortala, an admitted Nay Theist?
    • It may be possible anyway, because it's not lip service that matters, and the line between a deity's portfolio and essence is quite blurred. E.g. if a wizard taught a few dozens of students, did research to the end just because he felt like it, but didn't pray to anyone for last twenty years, he may still get a pass to Dweomerheart: "on Toril, Mystra is magic"(c). Maybe, Tyr is interested in a Bully Hunter who did this out of sense of justice, and if it was just a pretext for a good fight the guy is a client of Tempus? And so on. IIRC, there were no mentions of babies in Avatars or sourcebooks, though.
    • Atheists and Agnostics do not go there by definition. Not the way I read it, at least. It said "lipservice", so to me, it wasn't "Faithless" as in no-faith, but faithless the way a conscript would be considered faithless by the officers of an army.
      • It's very easy to beleive in gods when they come on down to visit, even in the wilds.
    • Small races in general got shafted. What happened to small weapons and riding dogs?
    • I'm surprised nobody's mentioned the fact that Lawful Evil, Chaotic Good, Lawful Neutral, and Chaotic Neutral NO LONGER EXIST.
      • Because the alignment system was restricting and didn't make any sense in terms of playability, especially all the varies types of neutral. Its about time the alignments got a shake up. And Unaligned isn't the same as true neutral, its all the neutrals rolled into one.
        • How was the system restricting? Only if you viewed it as being a set in stone, "every-action-you-take-must-be-this" kind of thing. I always figured that individual aspects of a person could be good or evil, lawful or chaotic, and the alignment was simply the quicked generalization you could make about the character. For example, Batman is a vigalante who breaks laws on regular occasions (chaotic) but absolutely refuses to kill under any circumstance (lawful).
        • Yes. Because the best way to make a system less restricting is to give fewer options.
        • I'm more shocked by the fact that Lawful Good and Chaotic Evil still exist rather than the elimination of the alignments above. This implies that law is good and chaos is bad.
          • But of course it does. It's not 'Wizards of the Coast', folk, it's 'Hasbro'. Good morning...
        • To be fair, though, the original D&D did this also. there were a total of three alignments -- Lawful, Neutral and Chaotic. Lawfuls were assumed to be on the "good" portion of the spectrum, with most character falling into "Neutral" and baddies and Evil High Priests and other assorted ne'er-do-wells being "Chaotic." I'm not sure if that was EGG's intention, but that's how it seemed to play out in the original D&D and its derivative, unlike AD&D and D&D 3E (and derivative games like Castles and Crusades) which use the 9-point axis.
      • Without getting into a debate on morals I'll just say that, legally, obeying the law is the mark of a good person, breaking the law is generally the mark of a bad person. Chaotic evil seems to imply a rejection of conventional society and stability, lawful good means the character supports and follows the laws of society. Lawful Good=Batman, Chaotic Evil=Joker, both the opposite ends of extremes. Whether or not that makes them nice people, or right or wrong in their actions, is a different thing entirely and depends upon the whims of the player and the DM. There's a reason Good Is Not Nice and Light Is Not Good exists. Its also a neat juxtaposition, a nice sliding scale rather than a hard and unwieldy diagram.
        • The problem here is that you're assuming that a chaotic person makes a habit out of breaking the laws. He doesn't (not typically). He simply doesn't regard them as he goes about his life. So a Chaotic Good person does Good and acts Good regardless of what he is legally mandated to do and probably never even gives active thought to whether or not what he's doing is breaking the law, unless it comes to haunt him in some way.
        • "Generally", in this context, fits under Blatant Lies. Yes, following the rules is good - but the rules have to be good. If the laws are evil, it's not. Slavery may have been legal 200 years ago, but that didn't make it right. If it was legislated that you had to eat a kitten every day, would you follow that law? I doubt it. So no, law =/= good. That's why the Good alignment in 4e and the Neutral Good and Chaotic Good alignments in previous editions existed.
        • Not according to my interpertations of the rules. Batman, being a vigalantae and working outside of the laws is not GOOD, rather Neutral. Lawful Neutral, as a matter of fact as he has his own codes and will do anything, even breaking the laws, to uphold that code. And on a related note, the artificality of the alignment system wasn't helped by interperations like this. Better to keep it simple and simplified rather than confusing and open to interpertations.
        • But that's the thing, arguments over proper alignment behaviour were always raging over the old alugnment, it was all open to interpretation already. Personally, I would do away with alignment altogether, but if they had doe that many more would have complained, so they cut it down. Chaotic Evil and Lawful Good seem to be the only two alignments that are (relatively) clearly defined, and being opposite ends of extremes they are the two easiest to use as a barometer when discussing alignment. And man, Batman has been written by so many different people, he has been 'Lawful Good' more than once, and by my reading of the rules, Neutral means he is out for his own interests, Batman is not. He might break the law, but he does it to defend society and in his own way, uphold the law. That isn't Neutral. Maybe Chaotic Good, but I stick by Lawful in the sense that he upholds and defends society.
        • Batman has been CANONICALLY stated to be Lawful Good. Complete Scoundrel, folks, do you speak it?
        • A splatbook, remember? Canon is questionable outside of the Core Rulebooks. Not to mention that that's what Wizard's is interpreting Batman's alignment to be - not what Bob Kane or whoever - the character's writers - are saying him to be. Personally I've always thought of him as the epitome of Chaotic Good.
        • The description given for Alignment:Good is "Freedom and kindness". That seems to imply that Lawful is not needed for Good, only for Lawful Good, which is different from Good. In this case, Good is nice.
        • I suspect Chaotic Good was cut because of all the debates over whether a given character is Neutral Good or Chaotic Good. Let's face it, Robin Hood (often considered the standard for CG) has been portrayed as all of the Good alignments. Chaotic Neutral and Lawful Neutral were probably cut because of how people were prone to playing them (let's face it, how many players have done Chaotic Neutral as something other than "LOL I WIZZ ON THE KING"?). Lawful Evil, I have no explanation for.
          • Actually, in the campaign I'm currently running, there's a guy playing a chaotic neutral elven cleric. He's playing him as a Badass scientist type (It helps that he serves a goddess of healing, knowledge, and medicine. He justifies beating the crap out of things as being for 'For medical science!').
        • What confuses me is the idea that having fewer alignments without extending the definitions of those alignments means more freedom. I understand that difficulties appear when a "rollplayer" takes an alignment different from their natural inclinations, and I understand that generalizing the categories gives all players more freedom. However, as it was, any rollplayer who wasn't a Munchkin could just play True Neutral, and the only character type I can think of that was hard to represent was evil with principles, which could squeeze into Lawful Evil. Chaotic Good and Lawful Evil can't be represented by Neutral Good and Neutral Evil, and if we just go with the description Unaligned is doesn't-care True Neutral and Social Darwinist True Neutral, with balance-type True Neutral and selfish True Neutral both gone. My natural inclination is balance-type True Neutral, so without a lenient DM any alignment I take will be violated by some of the actions I would want to take.
        • Here's a new trope for obeying laws and other regulations as a dominant trait.
        • Also, "Lawful" didn't mean "slave to everything ever written on a sheet of paper", "socially compliant" or even "always keeping one's word", but upholding some set of principles. Hero with an F In Good slipping from Lawful Good into Knight Templar is a typical variant. E.g. two biggest Forgotten Realms Lawful Neutral wizards were Khelben and Vangey -- obviously quite sneaky and not shy of underhanded methods. Each of them ran their own spy networks, and Vangerdahast was the wiliest old courtier in a royal court full of them.
      • I wished they just dumped Neutral Good and Neutral Evil. They're harder to define (so merging them with Chaotic Good and Lawful Evil was honestly a good idea). What bugs me is getting rid of Lawful Neutral and Chaotic Neutral. There are legitimate archetypes for the hard-ass rules follower and the irresponsible and self-involved but not destructive free spirit.
        • I proposed dumping Neutral Good and Neutral evil over on the Giant in the Playground forums. Many people didn't like it. I've come to the conclusion that no matter what you do some people won't like it, so it doesn't really matter. That said I have no idea why Wot C thought the change was necessary.
      • As for me, I'd propose just doing away with the alignment system as it was while still keeping the axises. As to this, one character can be either primarily good or evil, and have a drive for chaos or order. As to this, this would make it clear what a character leans towards in the long run. For instance, Bob is Good with Chaotic leanings, meaning that he favors chaotic tactics rather than lawful ones, but is more dedicated to good thanchaos, While Steve is Lawful with good leanings, meaning that he prefers to do good over evil, but what it boils down to in the end is that he will uphold the law when forced to choose. In 3.5ed, Bob would be a clear Chaotic Good, whereas Steve would either be Lawful Good or Lawful Neutral. In 4ed, Bob would be listed as either unaligned or good, whereas Steve would be listed as Lawful Good. This makes Steve look like he's better than Bob, while we clearly see for above that Bob favors doing good over chaos while still preferring such methods over lawful, while Steve favors upholding the law over doing actual good. This makes a guy whose prone to enter Knight Templar mode look better than a potential Messiah in 4ed, which really bugs me to the bones.
      • The alignment system gives more freedom because it does away with tying game mechanics to roleplaying. In the old editions, you had to declare an alignment and stick to it because otherwise certain items would/wouldn't work for you, certain people hurt you more/less, certain spells could/couldn't affect you. This isn't true in Fourth edition. A devil's attack will hurt you just as much as an angel's attack, whether you're Lawful Good, Chaotic Evil or Unaligned. You don't even need to pick an alignment, barring a few divine class restrictions. There is no reason now to straightjacket a character to certain actions because that is what his alignment says he does, you can choose to act however you think the character should, free of outside pressure. (Still no idea why they folded the alignment chart in half.)
      • I always saw Evil and Good as doing away with Neutral Evil and Neutral Good rather than Lawful Evil and Chaotic Good. I never really got what differentiated those two from the other ones. I am annoyed that they removed Lawful Neutral and Chaotic Neutral, because those two I could figure out the difference.
    • There's a big misconception here. Alignments represent a person's inclinations. They are how the person normally reacts, not how they always act. A Lawful Good character can be tempted, and a Chaotic Evil character can be moved to heroic actions by a show of supreme self-sacrifice. Also, on the subject of Neutral good and Neutral evil, look at it this way: Neutral Good people focus on good above all. They will obey the laws when the laws are just, and ignore the ones that aren't (in reguards to their behavior, I mean. They ignore it as in they don't follow it, not as in "it's not a big deal". It is a big deal, and they'll break or follow any laws it takes to get that law changed.), whereas a chaotic good character, when they notice an unjust law, are more likely to try to get the entire system overhauled by any means neccesary, except those that cross into the realm of evil. Neutral Evil Is just the opposite. Break or follow laws as needed to promote their own (usually evil) goals. They'll jaywalk to get somewhere faster, but they'll stand in line like everyone else in order to avoid trouble with security, because that would slow them down.
    • It isn't really that there are less alignments. It is more a combination of people trying to look at the new alignment system through the old alignment system and the designers unfortunately trying to keep Lawful Good and Chaotic Evil. Lawful Good are people that actively try to spread good where they go. Coincidentally, this usually tends to involve stabilizing or aiding structured societies in most, but not all cases. Good is more for generally benevolent people, but they aren't devoting their lives to spreading good. Evil tends to be more petty and selfish people. Chaotic Evil are people that spread evil for its own sake. This means that they tend to destroy organized societies, since these are often the biggest opposition they face. Unaligned is everyone else that isn't particularly biased.
      • The alignment system change eliminates a lot of very confusing Always Chaotic Evil races that didn't really fit in any alignment. The best example are the Githzerai. This is a race that by their very existence is inherently chaotic. However, the way they act is Lawful Neutral. Basically, they arbitrarily got a random neutral alignment depending on the writer/DM, even though the Githzerai in almost every appearance is the same society with the same views. The Drow are similar, just jumping around evil alignments. They have a very structured society which would make them Lawful Evil, but their actions to the outside world are more Chaotic Evil.
      • Word of God is that a lot of the reason for the change was the occasionally nonsensical Lawful/Chaotic smite system.
      • In any case, alignment didn't really do anything in terms of roleplay. All it changes is what you write on your character sheet based on your character concept. All it really did was determine who could smite you and some class restrictions.
  • Why even have dragonborn as a non-monster manual player race? I thought that the whole POINT of these guys was that they were unique.
      • Because playing a half-dragon can be fun. And now you can create the same character - thematically, at least - without the harsh level adjustment.
      • Until relatively recently, I wasn't even aware that dragonborn (as opposed to half-dragons) existed in 3.5. And from what little I understand, they were normal mortals blessed by Bahamut or something. That is not the case anymore. They're a race of their own, albeit one with a cultural reverence for Bahamut. To put it another way, that was the point in the previous edition - the point in the new edition is to play as a character who can spray acid on his enemies.
      • Point was that they were unique, but the point is lost. It's not about roleplaying in a believable setting anymore. It's about 'kewl' and Mary Sue. The shift in intended auditory, y'know.
        • Wait, wait. Playing a Proud Warrior Race from the desert with traits from a rather common monster is more Mary Sue than playing a race of people blessed by a GOD so that they could be his special servants and to gain an ability that is mechanically stronger than a template that requires you to be 3 levels weaker? Not to mention that this race's fluff is to fight a goddess' minion and bring hope to the world and wangst about how they have a special task and must sacrifice so much? Well, when you say it like that...
    • If I wanted to play something that took elements of MMORPGs, I'd play ... an MMORPG.
      • So you don't like Dungeons and Dragons 3.5, 3rd, A Dvanced Dungeons and Dragons, 2nd, and 1st editions either, then, right?
      • Did you know you've been playing an MMORPG all along? It's called Dungeons and Dragons. Because guess what? MMORPGS WERE ACTUALLY BASED OFF OF D&D ELEMENTS SINCE THE DAYS OF MUDS AND ULTIMA ONLINE!!!! You know what this means, right?
      • But then you have to deal with time sink quests, idiotic players and raid schedules.
      • That, and with DND you are with friends. Plus actual roleplaying and doing things not covered by rules.
      • I completely agree with this argument. Just the other day, a friend invited me to play ping-pong with him. I told him that if I wanted to play a game that took elements from tennis, I'd play tennis.
      • If I wanted to play something like an MMO that took elements of a pen and paper game, I'd play...a pen and paper game.
    • There are several things that bug me about Fourth Edition, but in particular... In the Monster Manual's description of demons it says that their own survival means nothing to them, and they just reform in the abyss when they die. Then in the description of the Balor, on the very same page, it says, "Weaker demons obey the Balor's commands out of fear of being torn asunder." WTF?
      • Here's something you may not have considered: being torn asunder HURTS.
      • Just because death isn't perminant doesn't necessarily mean it's not painful. Also, it would probably be reasonable to assume that powerful demons like the Balor can totally buttrape the 'soul' or 'essence' of the demons in question, which would presumably be significantly more dangerous than just having a mortal shell destroyed.
      • One book also says that they die permanently if they're killed in the Abyss, which is presumably where Balor would kill them.
      • 2 ed. Planescape has it straight: a fiend could be killed for real outside if it leaves its plane on free will. If not, it will be reformed, but in an inferior form. If killed on home plane, result depends on type.
    • My big bug about 4e can be summed up in three words: Chaotic Evil Paladins.
      • Its called Blackguards (though that admittedly is a prestige class).
      • Well, there are Chaotic Evil gods, so it makes sense to have godly warriors of alignments other than Lawful Good... although not, perhaps, to call them the same thing.
      • Already done in Unearthed Arcana, along with Chaotic Good and Lawful Evil Paladin variants. Not that I like 4th Ed either, but still.
      • All I can say is, it's about time! I love Paladins, but Lawful Good characters make me sneeze.
      • Because enough people think it's retarded that you have any limitations at all on how to play a character?
      • Part of the problem is that Chaotic Evil Paladins make very little sense. Chaotic Evil implies you look out for #1. The whole point of a Paladin is that you serve a higher cause. I can see a Paladin that isn't Lawful Good, but Chaotic Evil? I suppose if your Chaotic Evil character was just plain insane, but I would think that Paladins of the Lawful Good variety would predominate.
        • The same as with priests: "See how my Lord/Lady is greeeeeat! Mwahahahaha-chop-chop-chop!".
        • No, that is a huge misconception of the convoluted alignment system most people did not understand. People that look out for #1 are True Neutral. Chaotic Evil alignment means you actively and intentionally spread evil and chaos in your wake. A Chaotic Evil Paladin, given the choice of doing something good or lawful for their own gain, could not do it for the same reason a Lawful Good Paladin could not do some evil or chaotic. The whole alignment system doesn't really make sense outside the planes system where you have planes devoted to a single alignment. This is the reason the Githzerai can be chaotic, but function as though they are lawful. Their ultimate goals spread chaos, so their methods to get to that is negated.
      • I think of them as enforcers of their god's will. They serve a higher cause, but since their cause is often wanton destruction, the standards are somewhat lowered.
        • Well, when the gods need enforcers, they have clerics (especially since they can use edged weapons). I always envisionned aladins as more committed to Law and Good regardless of the gods. Their power comes from the dedication to the "narrow path".
          • Depends on the setting, but generally it supposed to be less Church Militant--there's indeed Crusader kit or Knight prestige classes for battle-priests, plus warrior worshippers--and more "lead by example" job. In this context high Carisma requirement and restrictions harder than on the same deity's priest make perfect sense.
      • Weren't there already Paladins of Slaughter in the d20?
      • I, for one, agree with the OP: the basic character classes were all based on certain characters from myths and legends; the whole point of D&D was that you got to pretend to be a Knight of the Round Table or an Argonaut or one of Robin Hood's Merry Men or what have you. The Paladin character class was very clearly based off of the legends of Lancelot and Galahad; as such, it has a real-world mytho-poetic pedigree. Non-LG paladins just don't have that.
      • Paladins were intended as such, true, but think about this: If a Chaotic Evil person wants more power to do evil and destroy law, and a Chaotic Evil god/goddess wants the same thing, it's in the interests of the mortal to accept any power they can get, and the interests of the god/goddess to grant it, gaining yet another instrument for their own purposes. Plus, devotion is not exclusive to law and good. Chaos and evil have those who are completely devoted to them as well.
    • Fireball once a day!
      • I know. It sucks.
      • Scorching Burst As often as you want!
      • 1d6 fire damage "2d6 after level 21" bearly have the stopping power you would want from a fireball. Understandable since it is an atwill power, not exactly the great ball a fire everyone wants. Then there is feather fall. Why is that restricted to once a day. Most situations in which I ever used it, I had to use it on atleast two people, or would need it again later that same day.
      • Three words: Archmage epic destiny! You can choose a Daily spell and make it an Encounter spell. So whatever you've taken to replace fireball, you can do that every encounter, not once a day.
      • What "stopping power you would want from a fireball", anyway? 4E Fireball really is just Scorching Burst XXL -- doubled range, increased area, +2d6 base damage, and the ability to still do some damage on a miss (formerly "on a successful saving throw"), otherwise the same. And nothing prevents you from having both available if you like and are at least 5th level... -- The 3.x and earlier "1d6 damage per caster level" Fireball is history, and given how that whole paradigm was one of the main contributors to Linear Warriors, Quadratic Wizards, I for one can't say I'm entirely sorry to see it go.
  • I remember a long time ago playing an impromptu game of D&D with a few guys out in the wilderness (don't ask). When it came to making my character, I was going to have an Animorphism tiger-man thing, but they rejected it, saying I didn't have a good enough origin for it. Years afterwards, a quick research into D&D critters shows there are a multitude of species similar to what I wanted for my character. Note that these guys were supposedly avid D&D players (hence the game). So...why did they lie to me?
    • Because the weretigers were created after you played?
      • I have a first edition AD&D Monster Manual and weretigers exist (as do wererats and wereboars). Unless he was playing the original box set, which is in storage, that's not really possible.
        • The first edition ones didn't have a tiger-man form, though.
    • What about rakshasas, if you take away some of their innate powers?
      • This was back around Y2K, so I doubt that they were created after I played.
        • Well, you said a long time ago. I don't consider eight years a long time. It was just a theory. I formally withdraw it.
        • Rakshasas have been in AD&D since AT LEAST 1981. First edition Monster Manual again.
      • Mystara got Loads and Loads of Races, and at least Savage Coast among other Intelligent Gerbil peples has Rakasta.
    • It could just be that the DM didn't want you to play any of the really powerful critters that could have fit the bill. That's always the DM's prerogative.
    • Could also just be a case of "Dm is a dick."
      • that and werecreatures and Rakshasas are both alot stronger then im guessing the first level characters everyone else was playing
    • The game never really managed to develop balanced playable versions of monstrous races. 3.5's level adjustment generally left you with too few HP to be a good fighter and casters depended on actual levels in caster classes instead of the abilities the race handed out instead of them. Chances are that former editions were balanced even worse, if they even had playable versions of the monsters in question.
    • Woah, woah, woah. "Didn't have a good enough origin" doesn't mean "does not exist" or "is illegal under the rules". It means it doesn't make sense for your character to be wandering around with the rest of the party, or to be in the region in which the game is set. As a real-world comparison, say that you wanted to play a samurai in a game set in 18th-century Scotland. While nobody is disputing the existence of samurai in general, you shouldn't be surprised when they say "...what the hell is a samurai doing in Scotland? You better have a damn good explanation for this." If the rest of your party were human farmboys-come-adventurers from Pothole, Indiana (pop. 23), it just doesn't make sense for them to be hanging out with rare and powerful creatures, like weretigers and rakshasa.
  • Elves, every fault mentioned in fluff and stats is forgotten (you never see an elf tiring out quicker) or contradicted (how does a race weaker than the others somehow live longer).
    • Actually, they do tire out faster. But the Dex bonus lets them get in the sweating, gasping for breath and such in while your back is turned. As for the lifespan...well, they are generally under...what, five feet tall and one hundred pounds, so as long as nothing squishes them or diseases them, they'll live long lives.
    • The rate of aging doesn't necessarily correlate with resistance to damage, disease, or poison. I'm sure that gorillas, if translated to D&D stats, would have a much higher constitution than average humans, but they have lifespans 20-40 years shorter than humans. And we're talking about extreme lifespans that aren't possible on our world, and have to involve something supernatural.
      • Actually, gorillas are in D&D, under "Ape" in the Animals part of the MM. Their constitution is 14, with 10 of course being average.
      • Actually. Humans should have a higher constitution than damn near anything, or at the very least endurance which is several multitudes higher than anything else.
        • While humans are Made of Iron by the standards of Earth biology, D&D's averages are adjusted for "the average person." Giving humans a by-the-numbers higher Constitution would alter people's reference points of the scores, and and lowering everyone else's could nudge game balance over a bit.
          • DnD is based around Humans being 'the average'. If something has a score of higher than 10, it's better than your standard Human in that respect. When you think of 10 as the arbitrary score for an average man walking down the street, many of the scores make sense. Far more make absolutely none however.
          • Also, Constitution doesn't just affect endurance. It affects all fortitude saves (including resistance to poison and disease), and hit points. I'm not sure about the first one, but many animals can take a lot more damage than humans can. The best way to model the exceptional endurance of humans would probably be some special quality, possibly given in the humanoid type. It's a shame the designers didn't think of that.
          • The main problem with this idea is that we're not considering the whole "Dwarves have a higher constitution than we do" point. Meaning that, in DnD, if humans are Made of Iron, Dwarves are Made Of Steel.
            • Or mithril.
  • The inconsistencies. Bad enough they were apparent even within their own Editions, but between the TSR and Wizards changeover they became outright atrocious. Example; Qilue "apparently" dying to a beheading, despite having troll-like regeneration which would (and has in the past) allow her to recover from this. This act, also, at the same time somehow killed the goddess Eilistraee who was possessing her at the time. Despite Eilistraee having possessed many of her faithful before, having them die, and suffering no ill-effects from it (and the fact that many previous edition source books clearly state no mortal can EVER kill a god permentantly in direct combat of any kind, even with most artifact level weapons).
    • Might I point you at the Scepter of the Sorcerer-King (admittedly from 2e, but it's one of few things that can kill a god, and it's from Faerun)? Also, troll-like regeneration still falls victim to decapitation.
    • That's just the tip of the iceberg for inconsistencies Wizards has caused.
      • This is such blatantly obvious self-wank by Wizards it's grody. Note the character who did the killing was a character made by Wizards, killing off established original characters to make room for their own ubers.
        • Is this why Elminster and Drizzt apparently managed to survive the Fourth Edition massacre?
        • Fourth Edition. Just...Fourth Edition.
        • Am I the only one who thinks this is disturbingly similar to what was done with the Resident Evil movies?
          • No.
        • Gods are not invulnerable in 4e as long as some condition is met. (This precise condition varies depending on the god and the DM; there are a few suggestions for dealing with this in Open Grave and Draconomicon when they discuss Vecna and Tiamat).
    • What's particularly jarring about this death is that the person who did the killing was influenced by a poison that made it so she couldn't go against Lolth's will without suffering intolerable pain, yet she attacked Eilistraee/Qilue under the notion that it was Lolth in disguise. Can someone help me figure this one out?
      • It's not like she was still ol' good cold-blooded drow weighting the chances before doing something. Probably she was in such a confused state she just didn't remembered this. And may have suffered some pain just to make it feel more real.
    • Glowing double Idiot Ball, considering how it happened that Qilue herself was born drow.
    • Let's not forget, too, that Orcus was flat-out totally killed by Demogorgon, allowing Demogorgon to make the leap from near-god status to full-on god... and then Orcus resurrected himself later. This really makes the Eilistraee thing stupid.
      • Maybe she's just waiting for her resurrection?
      • Eilistraee was apparently actually waiting for her resurrection, which made sense given all the point that you have raised. There was no way that she could die by essentially losing an Avatar. In 5e/post-Sundering, Eilistraee's back (and no longer enemies with her brother); and it seems that she has actually had a quite bountiful comeback (her followers rejoined her, they are building relations with other races, and even founding a temple within Waterdeep itself). Ed Greenwood added his own explanation to that comeback, in that Eilistraee never died (here). When Qilué was killed while Eilistraee was possessing her body, given that the souls of all the chosen of Mystra become "Voices in the Weave" when they die, Qilué's soul was dragged into the Weave too, bringing a large part of Eilistraee's power with her (the sword that killed the priestess had lost its soul-destroying powers after it was broken and then rebuilt by a balor). After the Weave was nearly undone with Mystra out of the picture, Qilué+Eilistraee were trapped in what remained of it, while the goddess herself could at best muster enough strength for some small manifestations. After Mystra was resurrected (in truth she didn't die either), and the Weave made whole, she returned the power that the Dark Dancer had lost to its rightful owner.
  • The fact that D&D and other fantasy games tend to use ethnic stereotypes as sources for demihuman races, all of which seem to be monocultures or comprised of two or three subspecies, each of which is a monoculture. It's lame.
    • a) they have established cultures perpetuated by, y'know, very active gods. So there's some generic lines.
    • b) As long as they don't look over their shoulders to their generic deities... Are drow of Sshamath the same as Menzoberranir? Or are orcs in the Land of Fate the same as in Heartlands? And that's in one world. Differences between the worlds may be great. Spelljammer manuals say "when importing things into far-off sphere, twist them beyond recognition, then twist once more".
    • Furthermore, D&D uses largely established fantasy races for their source material. This is more a problem of them not fixing it than them actually perpetuating the stereotypes. The creators(I can only ever seem to remember Gary Gygax by name) decided to keep the races the same to avoid They Changed It, Now It Sucks. I guess that's only moving the problem along to other groups though. What this boils down to is that demihuman races were usually invented when a small group of a relatively insular culture ran into a new culture. For example, centaurs were based on the Mongol hordes. While it would be possible to change these to be more PC, they would inevitably have to remain monocultures because the only defining trait of humans in D is that they're all unique. If everybody was unique then nobody would be and there would be no more reason to play outside of your race than there would be to play outside of your gender or skin-tone. Even die-hard roleplayers likely wouldn't care because an elf would just be a human with pointy ears, a dwarf would be a short human, etc.
      • Wait, centaurs were based on a culture no Westerner met until about 1700 years after the first Greek depictions of centaurs? Did the Mongols time-travel or something?
        • No, but since Scythians and their kin (as well as most of Eurasia except few tourist stops) don't exist in Hollywood History, for people aware only of it those may as well be time-traveling Mongols. Not that the life in Steppe changed too obviously from Scythians to Temujin's youth anyway.
  • The Alignment system. Good and Evil are entirely subjective concepts, which, if treated as such, completely wreck the way the Alignment system works as a premise. The Book of Vile Darkness even says so.
    • Plenty of other books in the D&D product line have treated good and evil as absolutes. Furthermore, that statement is hardly completely agreed upon in the real world. Read basic moral philosophy. Settling that debate is way beyond anything TV Tropes or The Other Wiki can do, but even a cursory glance at Morality, and Moral Realism shows that the debate is clearly still open. For more information, get your friends in the philosophy department drunk first, so they don't hate you for beating a dead horse.
      • Also, alignment is a damn tool and gaming convention, regardless of the reality of morality in the real world.
    • Always Chaotic Evil races, or, in fact, any sapient race with free will, having any sort of alignment restriction. It doesn't make sense.
      • By extension: The fact that the "Baby Kobold" dilemma is, in fact, a dilemma at all.
      • Solved long ago for humanoids. Again, an average Zakharian orc is a rather reliable dock worker or something like. For baby dragons there were notions of "reverting to the stereotypes", but then again, there are moderate dragon cultures, e.g. on Coliar.
    • On the note of the Book of Vile Darkness, it advises to judge the moral value of an action largely on intent (with the caveat that some acts are just inherently evil deeds), and gives as an example of an "Evil" act and a "Good" act: The first example boils down to "Character A, who suffers from Schizophrenia, poisons a village's water supply because the voices in his head told him that they were all demons that had to be slain. This is an inherently evil act." The second example, similarly paraphrased, "Character B, who is sane, poisons a village's water supply because a disguised devil tricked him into thinking that they were all demons that had to be slain. This is still a good act, because the PC's intention was good." What the writers don't seem to have realized, though, is that the two acts and the motivations behind them are exactly the same in all respects except that Character A's source of "information" is a hallucination, and Character B's source is a little more "real." Personally, I would hold Character B more responsible for his actions than A, because he, presumably, has more presence of mind.
      • Along the same thread, the BoVD says that sadists, masochists, and sadomasochists are all inherently evil, morally depraved people, while in Real Life they are just as morally varied a group as any other, and just happen to have a particular kink that some people think is weird.
        • It's my view that real-life people who are part of the S&M community are different from the sadists and masochists described in the Bo VD. The real-life ones tend to have "safe words" and other protections to keep things from getting too crazy; a full-on evil sadist would disregard such limitations on his desires, and would maim or kill another person for pleasure. A full-on evil masochist would be absolutely willing to be maimed or even die for the pleasure of such a miscreant, even to the point of being a sacrifice in some vile ritual that'd bring a great evil into the world. People who play sexual games with props made from black leather don't quite reach that standard.
        • To quote a review of the BoVD on RP Gnet: "A villain who enjoying being beaten up is a villain with an unusually clear grasp on their place in the universe."
      • In addition, they ask you to discard the Real Life definition of the word "psychopath" (someone suffering from what's now called Antisocial Personality Disorder)), and replace it with "someone who lives, eats and breathes murder."
      • They did at least let you know what the Real Life definition was.
      • And the only things in the book that might possibly warrant its mature content warning are some of the random Body Horror pictures they slap onto the chapter header pages. It doesn't even touch on anything remotely comparable to the kinds of things the in-game version of the tome of the same name is supposed to describe. A better name would have been "Book of Generic Villainy."
        • They actually touched on that in a website column. The Book of Exalted Deeds also got the "for mature players" sticker which was explained by the fact that there's some Game Breaking stuff in there (Vow of Poverty, anyone?) and it requires a mature gamer to avoid powergaming. Same as in Book of Vile Darkness. Of course, by that definition pretty much no one who plays D&D is "mature."
          • Maybe they just felt it's impolite to write "BoED is for mature players because they can notice some of its content's immaturity" where author can read?
          • Page 141 of the Bo ED has a picture that I think qualifies the book for a "mature" label.
        • "The BoVD shouldn't have a mature content warning! All it has is Body Horror, rape, torture, murder, cannibalism, and spells that do all kinds of unpleasant things to people!" ...Wait, what?
      • Can be easily justified. Note that case A deluded himself in the way that both made him view all presumably mundane people as complete monsters and required him to kill them -- it's not like his head is full of flowers or brownies or he merely asked people to whip themselves to atone for imagined guilt, or just ran away from his monsters, or something. Also, the responsibility and the type of motivation are completely different things. And being Too Dumb to Live (case B) is not the same as "Evil"... yeah, idiots are dangerous to be around even if they want to help people, let alone to be heroes, is it a surprise?
        • If I understand you correctly, you think people with schizophrenia delude themselves? I don't think you quite grasp the nature of schizophrenia. How is being Too Dumb to Live not evil when being psychotic is? If you're Too Dumb to Live, you're either too lazy or arrogant to think through the implications of your actions (which may not be evil, but you're still culpable), or you're mentally impaired. If you're schizophrenic, you're mentally impaired. What's the difference?
          • Well, we two and American Psychiatry Associaction know that it's actually little green men delude them, but... ;]
    • In D&D Evil and Good are objective. It's a fact of the universe. You might as well ask why Wizards can cast magic spells when nobody in the real world can cast magic spells. What I think is the worse thing is that most campaign worlds don't go into the fact that Evil and Good are objective. Imagine how much worse something like the Crusades could have been if everybody knew, they knew, completely and utterly objectively that their opponents were pure Evil! If you treat Evil and Good as objective, as the game does, then you run into much less problems (though, of course, you get different problems).
      • Your analogy doesn't work. The assumption that Functional Magic exists can, well, be functional as long as you adhere to Magic A Is Magic A, but turning "good" and "evil" into purely objective concepts can't function under the adherence to Magic A Is Magic A, because nothing is black and white. For example, let's say that a paladin kills an orc that was raiding some human farms. The farmers will hail the paladin as having done a good and just deed, but can you really say with a straight face that the hungry wife and children waiting for the orc back home would view it the same way? No, unless wanting to provide for your family in the only way available to you is somehow only evil if you're an orc or something. Having an "objective" definition of Good and Evil can also lead to the Baby Kobold Dilemma that I mentioned above, which goes thus: A PC paladin has just almost entirely cleared out a den of kobolds, all the fallen of whom fought to the last breath, but s/he stumbles across a newborn baby kobold on their waltz out. Kobolds are, theoretically, Always Chaotic Evil, but Children Are Innocent, and babies moreso. As such, I ask you this: If the paladin kills the baby kobold, should they fall for having committed an evil act? I say "Hell yes, they should! They just murdered an innocent baby! I don't buy any of this 'sins of the father' bullshit; the paladin should have brought the baby to a monastery full of kind monks or something, so that the child has a chance of growing up to be a productive member of society. People's morality is largely the result of their circumstances, after all. Baby-murdering, genocidal, Knights Templar human supremacists don't get brownie points from the generally-regarded-as-kind-and-just deities in my campaign world."
          • A kobold is a monster, yes? As far as I'm concerned, it's always ok to kill a monster, even a baby one. The baby monster will eventually become an adult monster, better to nip it in the bud. If I recall correctly, a paladin is a holy warrior, and thus it would seem to me that he SHOULD kill any monster he can get ahold of. When we encounter a "baby monster", the "monster" part is more relevant than the "baby" part.
          • Two things: Since there are gods that let's themselves to be seen almost everyday, that speaks directly to the people, and themselves adhere to some views of Good and Evil, we can say YES. In D&D, Good and Evil are absolute things, because there are dictated by their gods. Second, the problematic of the Baby Kobold varies from GM to GM, but our paladin have his handy "Detect Evil" ability. He could even "Let the gods decide" and just slap the baby in the back, but with the "Smite Evil" attack: if his god decide that the Kobold is more monster than baby, and deserves to die, it would be the very same god who would have killed the kobold, not the paladin!
          • Kobolds are humanoids, and only usually evil.
          • Background plays a large part of the character, it may be a "monster", but "monsters" also can become heroes of the highest caliber and purer than paladins. Just because they come from a race that is notoriously evil, doesn't mean an individual can't rise up and become a paladin of Bahamut. Further, some of the worst shit on the planet can be caused by Overzealous Lawful good paladins. It should all boil down to context and perspective. But, then again, all your alignment really is just one or two words on your character sheet.
        • I was also irked by this but then I basically caught on to what the people are saying here. You have to understand that good and evil are subjective concepts in real life to most people, but in D&D they are absolute. Your analogy also makes little sense to me, because Wizards exlplicitly states in a book that killing baby Kobolds is evil, and killing the orc who is invading your home for food is neutral at worst since it is an act of defense. If someone breaks into a house I don't care if they're just trying to feed their family, they pretty much have it coming when they get shot. Also I don't see why the orc can't just forage and farm like a human might. In any case, this is basically the way I look at it: it doesn't matter how you view good and evil IRL - in the D&D world they are mystical forces - in fact there are specific Planes of Existence devoted to concepts like good, evil, chaos, and law. Moreover, it (the alignment system) rarely comes up throughout most campaigns outside of a few specific spells. In these cases there's really no need to debate about whether something is good or evil and how it fits into the real world. You need only ask yourself, "What would Hextor do?" For example, does it really matter if I have 'chaotic evil' or 'lawful good' written on my character sheet? In most cases, no - the only real exceptions are things like 'detect evil' or 'smite good', and in all these instances I find that asking the afforementioned question (or a variation thereof) to be pretty effective. Did one of your players just cast a "smite evil" spell on a creature and you're not sure if you should consider the creature evil or not? Simple, ask: "If Heronious was here would he bless me with the power to kill this guy?" If the answer is yes, then you can consider the creature evil. If you think for whatever reason that a benevolent god would not want to see the creature erradicated as quickly as possible, then it's alignment is something else. I really don't think you should get too worked up about alignments since they rarely come into play and since you can pretty much play your character (or in the DM's case your 'monsters') however you want.
        • Following the Book of Exalted Deeds, there is no Baby Kobold Dilemma. Placing a fireball so it hits noncombatants, for example, is considered evil, even if they're Orc noncombatants. Since babies are the ultimate noncombatant, killing them as a result of carelessness or callousness is bad, so murdering them in cold blood is worse. In other words, you're a paladin, you kill the baby, you fall, it really is that fucking simple. The BOED goes into quite a lot of detail on this - good forgives. Good shows mercy. Good does not strike down unarmed children. Good believes anyone except demons, devils, and yugoloths can be redeemed. Good doesn't just fit on the Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism, good defines the Idealism end.
        • Yeah, sometimes paladins were turned Knight Templar, Lawful Stupid and whatnot. And in some settings were given a handful of dim view for dumb or Lawful Anal deeds. It's just that "all paladins are Lawful Good" is not the same as "no one has very good reason to say some paladin is an obnoxious jerk". As simple as that. Also, people not dealing with Outer Planes (including divine inhabitants) simply don't have to care about alignment nuances at all and can get any arbitrary attitude that suits them. And it's not like most Prime or even elemental people scurry around brandishing detect alignment effects or something.
    • What makes the least sense to me are magic items that can only be used by someone of an evil alignment. Logically, no one would ever touch such a thing, because no one believes themself to be evil. In the real world, non-sociopathic people who commit atrocities only manage it because they manage to convince themselves either that their victims are the evil ones and thus deserve it, or that they are subhuman and therefore their suffering is beneath notice. If the people of the various D&D settings are different--if they are capable of being both evil and fully aware of it, to the point where they would take up a weapon that aids the evil and painfully burns the non-evil, then they are not human beings as we know them, or anything close to it.
      • Remember: Evil is cool, feels and tastes good, and can both come across as dead sexy and have style. It may also just plain pay better, at least in the short run. Thus, if you do have objective good vs. evil camps, it's not inconceivable that perfectly normal humans would join the nominally 'evil' side simply for the perks... -- Incidentally, the whole D&D alignment flamewar has been going on for so long that I feel confident that we won't resolve it on this wiki either.
      • Consider also that some people are just plain evil, and they know it and make no attempt to disguise it. Not everyone who commits evil acts is insane or self-deluding. Some people really do want to see the world burn, and understand all the implications this brings with it. This sort of person is also the most likely to use an item that's so hideous that it burns any remotely good person touching it.
    • Kobolds are only "Usually Lawful Evil". And if you kill it, you'll never know what they may have done, what choices they may have made. A baby is a baby, small, scaly reptillian bugger that it may be.
        • Now let's try a different tack:

 Dark Lord Evisceratrix O'Kittensquisher: Let's see, the order of paladins in shiny golden armour have beaten the crap out of me a dozen times, grass wilts wherever I step, imps and minor demons are hanging around begging me to join their team, I've set up a dozen cults of Vecna, my irises are slowly turning red as a result of casting spells channelling enough negative energy to depopulate a good-sized town, and I'm marching at the head of a legion of zombies...I'm beginning to think I may be the bad guy here.

    • Back on topic, it should be kept in mind that D & D's definitions of neutral and evil are a bit different from how they might be defined from a philosophical perspective. A character who vacillates between good and self-interest is Mr. Vice Guy in most people's views, but in this system is neutral. It's a similar deal for someone who'll kill a group of adventurers to prevent them from massacring a villageful of goblins. A character who believes that It's All About Me, but isn't sadistic and will help the good guys whenever it benefits him as well, is Lawful Evil (like the drow.) Mind you, this setup is a bit disturbing in and of itself, considering what it indicates about the moral outlook of whoever developed it.
  • The fact that there haven't been any Modrons since 2nd Edition. That REALLY bugs me.
    • Modrons were remade for 3rd edition as part of a web enhancement for Manual of the Planes. I assume you can still download it from the Wizards website.
      • Yes, there's a modron enhancement.
    • Modrons: it's hip to be square.
    • They are on the schedule for 4'th Edition. Monster Manual 3 if I heard right.
      • That Good an All, But would thay Origin be Immoral (as in from the Astral Sea) or Aberrant (from the Far Realm)? Because Mechanus isn't... well Unknown.
      • Um... The Think is... Um... April Fools' Day?
  • When you make a ranged attack against an enemy who is in melee with an ally, you take a -4 penalty to hit. But when you're fighting a group of enemies, projectiles either hit their intended target or disappear. There's no such thing as a stray bullet. So why do you have to be careful?
    • A group of enemies are presumably not trying to get in each others' way (and thus probably five or more feet apart), whereas an ally in combat is likely up close and personal with whatever baddie they're trying to violently negotiate with.
    • More realistically, that rule is probably there so you don't have to do some kind of "So whom does it hit, then?" roll every time anyone misses a shot, with it's own special (likely complex) mechanics. The penalty still exists to give some nod towards reality.
      • There are optional rules for tracking where projectiles went in the DMG. However, you're right; they are complicated. The DMG even acknowledges this, saying that you can implement these rules, but your gain would probably not be worth having to make four or more additional die rolls.
    • It may be worth noting that 4E has effectively removed this penalty. Allies explicitly do not provide cover to enemies in this edition.
  • Why can't a monk dual-wield his bare hands?
    • Isn't that essentially what the "Flurry of Blows" feat does?
    • No. If a monk is holding a special monk weapon, he gets a full attack action, the extra attacks from FOB, and at least one off-hand attack. If he's unarmed, he can't make off-hand attacks, even though he necessarily had the speed and coordination to do so a minute ago. Hell, a monk can flurry with both his hands bound. No matter how you handwave it, you always get more attacks with an off-hand weapon than without.
    • What are you talking about? Monks can "dual-wield" their hands. You just take the penalties associated with dual wielding light weapons.
      • From the main FAQ on the WOTC website:
        "Can a monk get an extra unarmed attack each round by making an off-hand attack?"
        "There’s no such thing as a monk making an off-hand unarmed attack, because monks are already using pretty much their whole bodies for unarmed combat. For unarmed monks, the flurry of blows ability replaces off-hand unarmed attacks."
      • Except the latest downloadable 3.5 FAQ says they can, so nyeah.
      • An unarmed attack should already be assumed to be dual-wielded. It's not "I hit him exclusively with my right hand". It's rights, lefts, uppercuts, and kicks, all mixed in. The lack of a bonus attack for this is simply because it takes a hell of a lot of effort for punching people to be as effective as hacking them in half with an axe; medieval knights generally used weapons instead of their gauntlets, after all.
  • What really bugs me is that, instead of Eberron, the big new setting could have been something made by Rich Burlew. (Eberron is pretty cool, but...Burlewverse!)
    • Burlew said that he only started his website, and by extension the comic, because he lost the contest. So if he had won, Order of the Stick may not have existed. What bugs me is that Wizards apparently still has the setting under NDA, even though they aren't doing anything with it.
  • Bugbears. If an owlbear is something like a cross between an owl and a bear, why the hell is a bugbear some kind of oversized goblin?
  • Magic writing works kind of differently in the Dungeons and Dragons universe. The substance of this entry can be summarised by viewing this erudite discussion on the topic.
    • No, it works exactly the way you'd expect instructions for an advanced magical effect to work. Just because the verbal component for the spell is one word long doesn't mean that's all the information you need to cast it. If that were the case, there would be no need to prepare spells, and anyone could just cast it at any time. That comic completely ignores the logic of the setting it claims to be mocking, just so it can mock it more.
    • Could be that while the spell is one word long, there's a fuckton of stuff that needs to be recorded - notes on pronunciation, mystic sigils and so forth, plus planar diagrams to record how it works. Wizards are the DnD equivalent of scientists - they usually don't just want to make stuff happen, they also want to know how it works, what makes it tick, where the energy comes from and so forth.
    • Also, I seem to recall at least one explanation for the memorization thing being that you were effectively casting most of the spell already, and the words spoken when its cast are those needed to complete the spell.
      • Yeah, it looks like Did Not Do the Research: symbolics and "you just forgot it" version of Vancian Magic was retconned off long ago for good reasons, and at least in 2 ed. sources it was "memorization creates a pattern, casting just powers it up and deploys properly". There are items that can repeat any sound indefinitely, including Power Word -- it will be just a sound. So, components has little to do with the spell complexity. There were even old spells without V component or even any at all, and in 3+ ed all components can be eliminated: it has no M, still+ silent means only 2 extra spell levels.
        • Which is why I vastly prefer "preparation" to "memorization."


  • So what happens to the Lich when you destroy its phylactery? Yes the Lich is destroyed and can't regenerate, but does destroying the phylactery destroy the soul, or just send it to its final reward? If the soul survives, would you then be able to Resurrect the person?
    • There's no reason to treat this unlike any other method, including direct undeath disruption. So it changes "undead" to "slain". But if undeath counts as "time being dead", mortals have very little chance to resurrect a lich. 200 years old, and you'll need level 20 priest. 500 years... yeah. And after all this, it can easily turn out to be someone dying of old age. The only method explicitly said to revert undeads was "Gift of Life", a High Magic (elven-only tradition) spell from Forgotten Realms.
    • Nothing happens to the Lich. The phylactery only provides a place for the Lich's soul to go if its physical form is destroyed rather than just dying normally. It resides there until it is capable of finding, regenerating, or creating a new body (also varies based on the source). It is possible to become a Lich without a phylactery (this varies between sources though), but if your physical form dies then you are gone. If you can't revive the Lich normally, nothing you do to the phylactery would help, barring the DM changing the rules.
  • Elves live for hundreds of years, yet level up at the same rate as other adventurers. If the DM is using epic rules, why aren't there dozens of god-mode level 30 Elf super wizards around?
    • Because in Spellcasters Edition, we have Clerics and Druids.
    • Most elves are too busy being aloof, self-righteous pansies and writing their autobiographies (which never end because they won't fucking die) in treehouses to actually bother leveling.
      • Or just sitting and looking at the stars. Though it depends. On the setting and on the elf. At least, AD&D2 elven campaigns recommended to drop the limitation, but use "slow advancement" option.

El blinked at the old Coronal. "A warrior?"

The white-haired elf sighed. "I did in my time down some orcs--"

And a hundred thousand men or so, and a dragon or two," the Srinshee put in. The Coronal waved a dismissive hand.
Elminster in Myth Drannor
    • There were some elven uber-wizards. A few.

El looked about. " 'Yonder worm'?" he asked hesitantly, seeing no beast or trophy of one, but only rooms of treasure.

"That passage," the Srinshee told him, "is vaulted with the bones of a deep-worm that rose up from gnawing in the deep places and came tunneling in here, hungry for treasure. They eat metal, you know."

El stared at the vaulting along the indicated passage. It did look like bone, come to think of it, but... He looked back at the sorceress with new respect. "So if I offer you violence, or try to leave this place, you can slay me by lifting one finger."
Elminster in Myth Drannor
    • All of which raises the question as to why dragons, who are considerably longer lived than elves, aren't supermages and warriors (at least the ones capable of taking humanoid form) themselves.
      • Because they are lazy bastards who just care for sleeping for centuries on a pile of gold!
      • Because they are! See the sorcerer levels.
      • Because the ones that are that powerful require you to be obscenely strong yourself to ever fight, at least in 4e. Hatchlings and Wyrmlings tend to be around level one to five; juvenile to young (a few years to a couple decades) run the 5-11 range; "adult" of various flavors (a century or so or younger) comprise Paragon tier, 11-20. It's not until you approach or reach Epic tier, 21+, that you start fighting "elder" dragons, and may the gods help you, Ancient ones.
    • All elves obviously have serious learning disabilities, if not full-on mental retardation. Why do you think the average level 1 elf is more than a hundred years old, and yet has the same knowledge and capability of a human teenager?
      • As of 4E, elves (and eladrin) mature about as quickly as humans do and only start to age more slowly then. With regard to the starting ages of earlier editions...it's purely speculation on my part, but part of it, at least, could be cultural. Elves aren't precisely the quickest-breeding of species in D&D land, after all, so a stance of "No adventuring for you until you've done your duty to your race and spawned and raised at least one offspring!" would only make pragmatic sense.
      • The 3.5 book Races of the Wild explains that elves mature only slightly slower than humans, with humans being considered full adults at 20 and elves at 25. Past that, elves stop physically aging, at least in any way that resembles aging to the other races. It's mentioned that the reason they don't tend to head out adventuring until they're roughly a century old is because elves view mental maturity much differently. It's considered foolish to just run out to slay a dragon when you haven't even taken a decade or so to figure out how a house is built, how to bake bread, how to forge a sword, what berries are safe to eat, and so forth. It's rarely done because spreading skill ranks too thin can mechanically gimp a character, but they're meant to have at least dabbled in a little of quite literally everything before choosing what they would prefer to do, especially if that ends up being something as dangerous as adventuring.
    • Also consider that there is only so much you can learn or honing your physique so much before your skills start to plateau. If elves develop skills at a similar rate as humans then eventually they won't advance any further because they've reached their limit. They may also lose their abilities at a similar rate from lack of use. Considering their longevity thats a pretty big deal, losing something faster then it took to gain. Would explain a few things atleast.
  • The thing that just bugs me is that apparently, D&D is exempt from all' blame of making Bahamut a dragon, when in Arabic mythology he was a whale. So where does the blame fall for all those touchy touchy mythology buffs butthurt about how more people know bahamut as a dragon? Well, ignore D&D's offense...it's perfectly okay for them to skew Arabic Mythology. Final Fantasy did it too?! IT'S FINAL FANTASY'S FAULT!!!!
    • 'coz we are to busy wineing about 4th ed?
    • To put it rather mildly, it's not the only screw up done by various authors. So much "not the only" that it's hard to see the whole dragon god behind all the other mild Flame Bait. Especially monsters. Real mythos in recognizable shapes were modeled mostly in optional sourcebooks like AD&D 2ed Historical Reference and Legends & Lore. Not that there were no ret cons either. Another reason is that those who are interested in details don't play "generic something", but deal with specific settings.
      • Specific settings then? okay...Greyhawk. There you go - specific setting. Bitch. Now.
    • People care that Bahamut is a dragon in Final Fantasy?
      • No, but you watch 'em whine when he's anything else. On the other hand, everything in the original Final Fantasy was lifted wholesale from the Monster Manual anyway.
  • 'Detect Magic' is a spell... you cast it to get what's written on the box... but, it's magic, so, you're casting magic to detect the presence of magic...? Shouldn't that given a massive false positive from the get go... "Hey, Lord Jeff, everything in range of the spell is glowing... we've hit the motherlode!/We're in deep shit!"
    • Because it's a divination spell centered on the caster that affects their senses, kind of like a passive sensor or microphone, except for magic. Presumably, the highly intelligent caster who originally developed the spell designed it so that the spell would detect 'itself in action.
    • Come on now, metal detectors are made of metal and don't detect themselves!
    • It's more interesting to think how Antimagic Shell works (an ongoing spell effect that disables ongoing spell effects). This creates some implications, of course.
  • This is more about Pen and Paper games in general...but explain to me how Dice Rolls and Paper-stats make the Role Play more "Realistic"? All it's really doing is keeping people from autohitting, and even then, people still find ways to cheat and make it so that they might as well be autohitting. Because I rolled a two, my minotaur mage crumpled like the paper I made my character sheet with and yet for some odd reason, a dwarf was somehow able to pass the check to move the much larger minotaur body. Explain to me how that is realistic.
    • Well, if he's cheating, then that's the problem. Blaming dice because people can cheat is addressing the wrong problem. Dice aren't so much meant to potray realism, but to prevent the 'cops and robbers' situation of "I hit you!" "No you didn't!" "Uh-huh!" "Nuh-uh!" After all, is lobbing fireballs and not getting squished in one turn by a dragon realistic? And classical mythology is filled with humans wrestling and beating much larger monsters. Beowulf certainly did fairly well for himself. What's wrong with a heroic dwarf doing the same?
    • You're also Completely Missing the Point. System-based RPGs are not the same thing as freeform roleplays. They were never intended to be. They're games with more historical connection to tabletop wargaming than role-playing-- the "playing a character" aspect was added in to enhance the extant game not the other way around.
    • You do realize these rolls also represent the realistic factor of unforeseen consequences, as in your minotaur got hit in major artery and the dwarf happens to be abusing steroids, or is having to throw their whole weight into it. Use your imagination, your attack misses, so that means your character mis-timed their strike, the defender dodged, or it hit the defender but the armour blocked it, like real armour? In fact hitting is just a case of an attack that successful penetrates armour, otherwise you could keep hitting a shield and it would cause spontaneus bleeding on the bearer.
  • Okay, seriously what is up with the sidebar "Rise of the Raven Queen" in Divine Power? Despite her alignment being Unaligned, and everything else about her up to that point being fairly unambiguous about her being a neutral and impartial deity of death as part of the natural order... she's suddenly a cackling evil madwoman who wants to overthrow the gods so she can become exactly like Nerull.
    • Well, I have to point one thing out. Just bear with me. The other gods seem to have this nasty habit of making people immortal. She's the god of death... yeah, immortality ain't to thrilling an idea from her perspective... although she is a friggin' hypocrite.
  • I was always bothered by the Identify spell. For the cost of 150 gold, you can identify one magical property of the item in question. One. And it's always the most basic property of the item. If you find a + 3 defending greatsword of flaming burst, no matter how many times you cast Identify you'll learn that it's a + 3 greatsword every time. And then later they introduced a feat that costs no money to use and tells you everything you might need to know about the item.
    • Well, duh. Running the Asylum + munchkinism creeping in. AD&D 2+ version is much better anyway: a wizard of 5 level may identify up to 5 functions, but no exact bonuses or charges. And Analyze Dweomer that uncovers everything, but is a 8-level spell.
    • The 4th edition way of handling this is much better. Any half-brained individual can, during a five-minute rest (while his companions are, say, exploring the room for traps/secret doors, healing one another, or discussing where to go next), determine that yes, this greatsword can deal fire damage, and will burst in flames on a very good hit, and is very good at defending too.
    • Also, back in the days, the main function of the spell was : "Is it cursed or can I use it safely?"
  • Okay, so say a female druid got a bit frisky with her male animal companion while in wildshape...what would happen to the baby (or babies, for species where multiple births are the norm) if she returned to her original form during the pregnancy? Would it even be possible to return to normal? These are important questions, damnit!
    • Probably be rejected by her body which recognises the child as a non-related entity. Sort of like how humans can't carry a baby chimpanzee to term.
  • Maybe I must being a bit Currious, Buy Why No Martial Controller Class?
    • Martial classes are mostly melee, and that makes it hard to make up some plausible Controller type powers, the best equivalent is the Earthstrength Warden with extended reach etc... Unless you made them like a Dynasty Warriors spear using character it doesn't make sense. I suppose the Warlord could get a class feature that involved yelling the enemy into submission, but that still isn't as justifiable as a Wizard/Druid/Psionicist.
    • Also, the Controller role is more vaguely defined than the others. The Fighter and Rogue already have so many powers focusing on forced movement or Standard Status Effects respectively that a martial Controller can't be a new class. The only concept that makes sense is a World of Warcraft Ranger with pets and traps.
    • They have a marital controller now!
    • There's also the Essentials character Archer-Type Ranger, who relies on Trick Shots. Not very well, mind you, but it counts.
  • I never understood why loyalty is considered a sign of weakness in Baator. Isn't loyalty to one's superior a fundamental aspect of Law?
    • Because it's a vile bureaucracy Up to Eleven? That is, it stands on politicking, including both obedience and intriguing behind the superior's back (but not rebellion). This proves the greater understanding of Deal with the Devil -style order. That is, the superior who was set up didn't deserve to be the superior. Order + Evil involves imposing one's will on the others. Faces of Evil says that though black abishai are made from spinagons risen in power, they are despised more. Because a black abishai is someone who served well, but due to lack of ambition and cunning was given only minimum promotion. Properly vicked spinagons end up promoted by more than one step. "No determination" = "not cool".
    • Its suggested in 4e that the Loyalty=weakness rule may not be so universal as previously thought, at least not in the case of Asmodeus himself. The article on Geryon hints that Asmodeus didn't banish him for being loyal(that was a cover) but actually did it to send him "undercover" so to speak; he needs him to complete a task that he can't have any personal connection to. Could just be an adventure hook for DM's, or it may tie into the upcoming Abyssal Plague Crisis Crossover, or some other future plotline.


  • Does it feel that elves are subject to the same arbitrary Moral Absolutism as LotR? Drow are dark skinned, and are universally evil, with the exception of Drizzt and worshippers of Elsitree who is an iconic maverick mostly known for being a Good Drow, or Jarlaxle, who despite not being a baby-eater is the chosen of a baby-soul-eating God? Why are they locked-in as being Always Chaotic Evil? And why are the other elven races allowed free choice? Why aren't there any Moon Elf nations ruled by greedy merchant princes? Why are the Wood Elves/Wild Elves not routinely waging war against city-states and logging towns that threaten their forests? Why do the Sun-Elves rule benevolently despite being almost defined by a level of arrogance that would be more appropriate for an empire ruled by an elven Master Race where lesser races must serve their Sun elf betters? Drow are the only elven race that gets Always Chaotic Evil, the rest are allowed free choice in between asshole/samaritan, or just stuck at being Good? I can only think of 3 non-drow elf characters that are evil, the child that Drizzt spared, who gets a Redemption Equals Death moment and the siblings Jon Irenicus & Bodhi, and they're not even elves when they start doing the really bad stuff!
    • They all are traditionalists and (except the Drow) slow-learners. As to the Drow, they differ a lot as long as it's not Salvatore in "shameless hack" mode (when he drops awesome stuff and rolls dumb Villain Balls left and right). Jalynfein: Chaotic Neutral. Jarlaxle: Chaotic Neutral, Lolth obviously likes him because of her "Chaos" portfolio (IIRC someone in books has a hypothesis that she spares Drizzt for the same reason: maybe he doesn't love chaos, but still damn well spreads it). Starlight and Shadows and War of the Spider Queen got Chaotic Neutral (Pharaun, early Liriel) and True Neutral (mostly peaceful laidback professional Kharza-kzad), just to name few Lolthites...
    • Evil elves: see Songs & Swords -- Elaith Craulnober, Kymil Nimesin. See Elminster's saga, especially Elminster in Myth Drannor -- a whole crowd of decadent assholes. Sun elves: don't rule long ago (after Vyshaantar, he-he), except in their own lands or via blade-rite like Irithyl of Cormanthyr. Zaor & Amlaruil Moonflowers -- Moon elves, which was Kymil's problem. Other elves: there's too few of them, and most are too isolationists even for the Retreat. They aren't in position to wage wars (the Wood Elves of Tethyr in Silver Shadows didn't until they were directly attacked, and even then had to be shamed into helping a neighbour tribe). Eldreth Veluuthra -- mostly evil elves and also "elves vs. humans" you asked for. With the church of Shevarash not that far behind (average Chaotic Neutral).
  • Why is it that 6 of the 8 stater species in 4e are humans or slight variants therefore? to prove my point we will say that Humans will work as our base. Dwarves are shorter squat humans, Elves are humans with pointy ears, Eladrin are elves with pupil less eyes, Half-elves are humans with slightly more pointed ears, Halflings are shorter humans. that just leaves the Teifling and the Dragonborn. while I understand that people mostly want to play as a mirror themselves, but I just want to fly my freak Flag and play as something different.
    • The 3.5 PHB only had humans, dwarves, elves, gnomes, half-elves, halflings and half-orcs. You cannot use that argument against 4e.
      • Then maybe it's an argument against the pro- demi-human bias in this game, or the lack of originality in the starting races.
    • The expansions do get better.
    • In the Monster Manual:
      • Doppelganger (a pale human with weird hair),
      • Drow (purple elves with pupilless eyes.(stop with the recolored nonsense, your personal opinion is irrelevant to this post. Post somewhere else.))
      • Githyanki,
      • Githzerai (which are mostly human),
      • Gnome,
      • Shadar-kai (which look like your typical goth metal fans),
      • Bugbears (Giant hairy thugs),
      • Gnolls (Hyena-men),
      • Goblins,
      • Hobgoblins,
      • Kobolds (Small humanoid lizards),
      • Minotaurs,
      • Orcs,
      • Shifters (Humans with a twist of wolf),
      • Warforged (Magical Robots)
    • Players handbook 2:
      • Devas (Purple skinned humans with pupil less eyes),
      • Gnomes,
      • Goliaths (Really big humans with grey skin),
      • Half-orcs,
      • Shifters.
    • Players handbook 3:
      • Githzerai,
      • Minotaurs,
      • Shardminds (Humans made from crystals).
      • Wilden (Plant-fey people that sort of have a Feline look to them).
    • Monster Manual 2:
      • Bullywugs (Frogmen),
      • Duergar (Evil Grey Dwarves),
      • Kenku (Bird Men).
    • Eberron:
    • Forgotten Realms:
      • Drow,
      • Genasi (Elemental humans).
    • Dark Sun:
      • Muls (half-Dwarves).
      • Thri-keen (Insect-people).
    • Manual of the Planes
      • Bladelings (Humans with spikes coming out of their bodies.)
    • The problem is in model's core. The way 3.0+ handls stats, it works good only with small adjustments. And then it handles levels without any difference between rogues and wizards. The net result: "monster levels" and other CL-fixing tricks. If ECL adjustment was enough, these wouldn't exist. And then 30-ranks mad skillz...
  • In 3.x-th edition: the abuse of "Half-whatever" templates. You cannot have a half-celestial half-elemental half-dragon half-vampire anything. Look up the meaning of "half"! Also note the line about "base creature". Thank you.
    • I always assumed "half" was just a slightly archaic way of saying "part-something or other." Therefore, you could certainly have a half-celestial, half-silver dragon, half-elf...assuming the ancestry was close enough to grant all the haxx abilities (otherwise, you'd probably just be a celestial- and dragonblooded half-elf).
  • Any RPG, really: people who still use the term "demihuman" for humanoid races. Planescape flat out stated what's wrong with this in what, 1998?
    • Let the elves and goblins come and sue us then.
    • And the term you'd rather have us use is...?
      • Humanoid?
        • Already used in a more inclusive sense -- e.g. covers also goblinoids (and kobolds before they became little dragons).
        • Seems to me that that works just fine, then. Orcs and goblins arguably do have more in common with humans than elves and dwarves ever did. :)
      • Sapien. Or Biped, since they all have the same basic body type.
  • Okay, maybe this is just me, but the thing that bothers me most about the whole death of Eilistraee bit is that suddenly Dark Elves are something completely different from Drow, and the former Good Drow suddenly became them. Yes, there were older references to the Drow formerly being the Ssri’Tel'Quessir... but couldn't they have come up with a common name for them that isn't massively confusing and doesn't disregard all continuity prior to this point? Hell, call them "Go-Squish-Like-A-Tomato Elves" or "Flurbleblurble elves" if you can't think of anything else.
    • That has been undone. It turns out that the ritual didn't transform all of her followers, only a few hundreds. After about a century after that event, Eilistraee has in fact returned to life, as a *drow* goddess, with nearly all *drow* followers. That ritual seemed to be merely Q'arlynd's doing to me.
  • Why is it that I can never find a list of Primordials for my 4e Campaigns. I mean They have vague clues in the manual of planes and the Draconomicon, but seriously is it so hard to make a chart that lists the Primordials names and elements. Its absolutely ridiculous how are Heroes suppose to combat Primoridals as suggested in some books if the DM has no idea who they are?
    • Two of the Primordials, Imix (fire) and Ogrémoch (earth), are in the Monster Manual 3.
      • They are left open for the DM to create.
      • In previous editions Imix and Ogremoch were classified as Elemental Princes. Yan-C-Bin (air), Olhydra (water), and Cryonax (ice) were the other such Princes, so you could use them.
      • Also, two more, Olhydra and Yan-C-Bin, were introduced in Dungeon Magazine (Issue 199 if you need it)
  • The rules for a Portable Hole and a Bag of Holding bing put together seem counterintuative. If you put the hole in the bag, it turns into a portal to the astral plane, swiftly sucking in everything it can. If you put the bag in the hole, an iinternal rift is created, destroying both. However, this seems like the opposite of what should happen. Wouldn't it make more sense ofr the "bag-in-the-hole" scenario to create a portal to the Astral Realm? You know, the hole turns into a gateway. Meanwhile, placing the hole in the bag sounds more like what should cause the internal destruction of both: the hole turns into a sucking gate within the bag, pulling the bag into it from the inside. Aesthetically, the whole thing just seems odd.
    • If you prefer it that way... This may be viewed as a violent malfunction of the extradimensional interface which is put inside another -- it defines effects, while the "external" one is usually subsumed and destroyed by consequences. Then a Bag of Holding will cause the same rift whether it's put inside Portable Hole, 'rope trick', 'extradimensional pocket' so on, while Portable Hole will open a gate whether stuck into Bag of Holding, 'rope trick' etc. After all, in Tome of Magic (AD&D2) Flatbox always explodes, Dimensional Mine always breaks the pocket and hurls its contents across Astral plane and Warp Marble always spits out its prisoner to Astral and deactivates safely, no matter which of the above happened to it (as well as teleport or planeshift, for that matter).
  • I'm an ordinary guy, setting out on a new adventure. Because I happened to put my sword into ten-fifteen goblins, I can now take double the amount of arrows to the chest. Point? Why do people suddenly become twice as hard to kill? Or, I know why, but how the hell does that make any sense?
    • Basically, your'e character has gotten more experienced and knows how to get hit by those arrows just the right way so they don't die as quickly. what really doesn't make sense is that you are now better at (for example) patching people up after they got hurt....
      • Think of HP more as Plot Armor and less as your ability to get stabbed in the face. Your buddy is not fixing actual damage, he's re-invigorating you after an exhausting battle or giving you a moral boost in the middle of one. You are not actually getting hit by those arrows, when you get "hit" you actually had to expend effort to not take a major hit rather than casually dodging them or letting them bounce off your armor. Have nothing when you are reduced to negative HP and they are stabbing you.
        • No, sorry, that logic (HP as luck and other combat factors), while a constant handwave of the system for ages, just doesn't fly. Why not? Consider that the only stat - the ONLY stat - that gives HP bonuses is Constitution. You know, your physical health. Consider that the cure spells are not called "Cure Plot Armor" and rather "Cure X Wounds". Plot armor and other such combat factors are reflected by your saving throws. Your HP is your ability to not bleed to death. For example, the wounding weapon mechanic, among other things. When you're hit by one of those, you're not losing plot armor every round. You're bleeding slowly to death, albeit losing blood from your impossibly full-to-bursting veins.
      • So how exactly is a level two better at dodging arrows than a level one, when they are both preoccupied with fighting, and a arrow hits them in the chest while they're distracted? Does being level two make their arrows magically hit a less vital spot?
      • As the two editors above you said: a combination of experience in battle (i.e., not being as distracted as a level 1 character) and HP not always translating literally to physical damage.
      • This is my take on HP. It's less actuall damage, and more endurance. A sword to the face is a sword to the face, no matter what your constitution score is. That's what the bloodied value is for.
        • Basically. A higher constitution score implies that you're able to not only TO take more damage, but you ACTIVELY take less damage. Try punching someone who's solid and wide as a tree trunk, then try punching someone with a BMI of 12. It's just that a melee fighter with experience would know how to roll with an impact, and getting stabbed at with a spear would end up either being a glancing blow or just pissing him off more; meanwhile an archer or wizard would get hit with the same attack and, not used to up-close physical combat, would fall to the ground crying like a baby.
    • Personally I'm fine with high level characters being effectively unkillable for real instead of the "luck+stamina" crap. It's not like the game pretends to be realistic or allows Fighters to get nice things.
    • A wizard did it. And I'm talking about all the mechanic under HP: take in account that an ogre can beat your character to negatives with a mace, then someone saves you, stabilice your wounds and healed you back with non-magical methods in a few days. Surprise! You don't have ANY broken bones! Also, if you were fighting some creatures in a swamp, you don't have to dissinfect your wounds, since only attacks, spells and bad food can cause diseases. The HP system isn't about realism, but trying to make battles fun.
  • It May not Bug Me, But I was thinking, Was anyone a bit up set about the Succubus being an Devil instead of being a Demon in 4th Edition?
    • Some nitpickers probably were, but it's worth remembering that (a) specifically separating 'devils' from 'demons' (and depending on your edition some other factions as well) is primarily a D&D-ism in the first place rather than a more general fantasy trope and (b) succubi in particular seem to be most commonly associated with Christian folk mythology in general and it could thus be just as easily argued that the Nine Hells is where they always should have hailed from in the first place.
    • And when you add a little disagreement about 4th ed in general, this point, while dubious, is sort of elbowed out of the spotlight...
    • According to Word of God the tempt-and-corrupt used by succubi was more Lawful Evil than Chaotic Evil. Rather than reimagine the monster (making it unrecognizable) they decided to change its allegiance.
  • Sorcerer and Warlock fluff bugs me. Specifically, the part about said classes being persecuted or shunned for their powers. Ignoring the whole Bullying a Dragon problem, and the question of why supernatural powers are so freaky in a high-magic world, there's the simple fact that both of these classes are known for their extraordinary charisma. It's their single most important stat, in a game where most classes have it as a dump stat. Due to this, any member of this class will generally be the most magnetic, charming, trustworthy, and downright likable people around. You'd expect them to be extremely popular rather the opposite. So, why do people throw rocks at them instead of flowers?
    • Well Charisma is a Stat on Personality, It dosen't have to be Beauty or Friendship.
    • Another Theory: Not All Sorcere and Warlock are Hated, Only the Player Sorcere and Warlock are Likeable.
    • Charisma measures general 'force of personality'. That does not mean that a charismatic character is necessarily smooth, charming, or even just well-liked! Just that he or she is indeed good at influencing others and getting his or her way. A crude, ill-mannered war chief who can nonetheless make people listen when he speaks and inspire his troops to lay down their lives for him, a conman that everybody knows can't be trusted but still can't help but listen to "for just a moment", an arch-villain who's just too scary to easily say no to...these are perfectly good examples of high-charisma characters as well. (Maybe we need a "Charisma Is Not Nice" trope?)
    • Fluff-wise for warlocks; they get their powers by making deals with Demon Lords and Archdevils, The Fair Folk, and Eldritch Abomination. Several reasons not to like people who deal with such creatures, especially the ones who are actively working for them. Sorcerers don't choose to become sorcerers, they're born sorcerers. They probably cause a lot of collatoral damage before they learn to control it.
  • Whenever new material shifts away from Bizarre Alien Biology. Particularly the prevalance of Non-Mammal Mammaries in 4th edition.
  • They still haven't killed multiple attribute dependancy in 4th edition? Some builds, such as archer ranger, fey and infernal pact warlock, assault swordmage and all three PHB wizard builds, let you optimize by maxing out two stats, others, such as star pact warlock, two blade ranger and shielding swordmage, need to pay a feat tax.
    • Heck, considering that most people will out the 'main' attack stat for their class anyway and likely end up with comparable scores (modulo racial modifiers, perhaps), haven't distinct attribute-dependent attack and damage bonuses kind of outlived their usefulness? If everybody in the party gets +3 or +4 to hit and damage on account of their build anyway, does it really matter whether the bonus supposedly comes from, say, strength, dexterity, wisdom, or charisma respectively?
  • Why (in 3.5e, at least) can rogues be lawful, but bards can't?
    • Dose Assassin count as Lawful Rogues?
    • I think it lies in the way that some classes primarily represent skill sets, whereas others represent lifestyles. Rogue is a "skill set" class - there are a huge variety of character concepts that can be statted as rogues, which are mostly defined by having a huge amount of skill points to spend on a huge amount of class skills, and being able to get into and out of places you don't want them to. A rogue can as easily be a diplomat or a detective as a cat burglar. Bard, on the other hand, is a "lifestyle" class - the rules are specifically written to support a specific character concept, and it's not one that lends itself well to lawfulness.
  • Why is the "standard cosmology" in the third edition called that? According to wikipedia: "The standard D&D cosmology is the official cosmology used in the Planescape and Greyhawk campaign settings." If it's only used in those settings, what's "standard" about it? Or if it's the one usually used (which Manual of the Planes seems to imply) then why does The Other Wiki single it out as used by Planescape and Greyhawk?
    • 1: a variation of Greyhawk (see the deties) is standard for core in 3.5, including said cosmology 2: Forgotten Realms part of Planescape's multiverse, just zoomed farther in (There may be others that are explicitly part of it as well, though PS is implied to be it for everything).
  • The comparative power of the gods and elder evils. The third edition sourcebook Elder Evils says the elder evils are so powerful that even the gods would hesitate to fight them. However, if you compare the statistics of the elder evils in that book to the stats of the gods in the third edition Deities and Demigods, you see that the gods should be able to easily crush the elder evils. Why the discrepency? Did nobody at Wizards of the Coast make sure their rulebooks didn't contradict each other about how the D&D universe works?
    • If memory serves, and it has been a while since I've given Elder Evils a read, most of the actual monsters fought aren't the evil themselves, but an aspect/avatar/servant of the evil made manifest by its will, before it's fully woken up. I remember you don't fight Atropus itself and you don't fight the Leviathan itself, and I'm fairly sure you don't fight that living superweapon thing itself. Comparatively, those three were the most powerful, and their true forms are beyond your capability to combat, forcing you to slay their minions before they fully awaken/complete their evil plans. The others were less physical threats and more environmental ones. Lymric's frost, Mother's offspring, the snake demon's army.
    • Also, part of the point to the Elder Evils book was to create amazing, exciting "end game" content without going into epic levels, as most players found epic games to be too broken to be enjoyable. So you get the feel of an epic level campaign without the mechanics of one.
    • Yeah, you're just fighting an extension of the evil, usually. There are Elder Evils who are far too large to even be fought directly (Atropus and Leviathan), for example. The ones whose true forms can be sensibly fought by nonepic mortals are Father Llymic, the Hulks of Zoretha, the Worm that Walks, and probably Zargon (given that he appears to be stronger against gods than mortals, according to the fluff text)
    • Also, out of the elder evils so far only the worm that walks has been updated for 4e(Atropus has been briefly mentioned), and Kyuss is very much within the epic levels. It's been a while since I've looked at Open Grave, but I remember him either being a level 28 or 30 solo(boss).
  • Some Fridge Logic with magic items in 3.5. No wizard would be able to run a business making magic items, because he'd have to keep adventuring to gain back the XP he spent crafting them. Only an actively adventuring wizard would be able to keep crafting, and it would only be practical to make the items he needs for himself and his party. Mechanically this makes sense, because it encourages the players to go on adventures rather than spend their time making magic items for gold. But the fridge logic kicks in when you realize that this means magic items should be extremely rare. The only ones in existence should be left by retired or dead adventurers. Yet this isn't the case in most campaigns. Adventurers can find or buy whatever magic items they need after a certain level, and most settings have a magic shop in any city above a certain size.
    • The world is old, and there have been a lot of retired and dead adventurers. An elf or a lich could make a magic weapon then earn back the XP hundreds of times over the centuries. A large war might see both sides crafting magic weapons as fast as they can, which then litter the battlefield afterwards. Plenty of scope for a flourishing trade in antique magic weapons (which, after all, don't wear or tarnish) to develop.
  • It seems like the third edition handbooks Elder Evils (with its story about how Atropus' death brought the deities into being and the implication that the dieties then created the universe), Lords of Madness: The Book of Aberations (with its story of some kind of world ruled by aboleths existing before the dieties) and Epic Level Handbook (with its mention of "proto-dieties" existing before the rules of physical form were set in the entry about the hundred-handed monster) all imply slightly different things about how the D&D multiverse came to be and weather the gods came before or after it. I realize the DM can use whatever origin he/she wants and that the third edition has since been replaced by the fourth one, but I'm curious if anyone knows what Wizards of the Coasts' intentions were at the time, or if it's just that different rulebook authors had different intentions and these stories really don't fit together.
    • I believe the general intention was to keep it vague with a lot of contradicting stories. It's something that we're not supposed to know as it's meant to be shrouded in myth. If a given GM wants to take a given story and place it as definite then they are free to select one and go with it and expand on it, however.
  • In just about every version of D&D, magic items, especially very powerful ones, can generally only be made by primary spell-casters: wizards, clerics, sorcerers (in 3rd, 3.5, and Pathfinder), druids, etc. Yet all of those classes are generally limited, albeit sometimes by differing game mechanics in different editions, in what weapons and armor they can use. Wizards (and sorcerers) generally cannot use any armor and can use only a handful of weapons like daggers and staves. Druids can use only armors that are made of totally organic materials: leather or padded armor and wooden shields, and are generally limited to weapons that are either entirely wooden, like staves, or have some agricultural function, like sickles, scythes, etc. Clerics can generally use any armor but can only use bludgeoning weapons. In just about every edition, making magic items, especially powerful ones, is difficult and expensive, and imposes costs that frankly cannot be monetized: in 2nd edition, any permanent magic item required expending a point of constitution, while in third edition and after, it required expending experience points. What D&D player would sacrifice a point of con or any more than a trivial amount of XP for any amount of money? So here's my question: where did all these magic swords come from? Because, clearly, A Wizard Did Not Do It!
    • Know what's protecting your scrawny, d4 ass from becoming troll food? People with armor and swords. Know what's better than people with armor and swords? People with +4 armor and flaming +5 swords. From an optimization-oriented player perspective, we know that there's no real gain to be had here; but that's not the point. Even if your wizard doesn't need meat shields on account of being Batman, justifying the existence of magic items is as simple as accepting that, at some point, a spellcaster weighed the pros and cons of enchanting the sword of the guy who stood between himself and a variety of voracious, man-eating horrors, and decided to enchant the damn sword.
      • Maybe, but the simple fact is that by the time a wizard is powerful enough to enchant magic items, he's powerful enough to summon monsters to be meat shields for him, to say nothing of various other ways he can deal with threats other than sacrificing precious experience or precious constitution points to make a meat shield more effective. To be perfectly blunt, if I'm playing a wizard, there is pretty much no circumstance under which I would ever make a magical sword, unless someone else is somehow providing the XP (letting someone else provide the con point wasn't an option in 1st and 2nd).
        • Presumably, there is a way for non-player characters to earn XP without running around raiding dungeons. The average player does not want to sit around R Ping sitting around for a week building up magical energy to make items to sell, but presumably there are people that would make a career out of it given how much those items are worth. It's not so much the logical flaw that it is a stupid thing for anyone to do, just a potentially stupid thing for someone who's main occupation is using magic in life and death situations to do.
        • For example, a longsword costs 15 gp. Presumably, blacksmiths can make a living by selling things like longswords, so the amount of money needed to get by isn't very high. A +1 magic enhancement adds 2000 gp, so presumably, unless the amount of time it would take a non-combat enchanter to make a +1 magic enhancement is ridiculously huge (say 133 times longer then how long a blacksmith takes to make a longsword), then there is definitely a lucrative amount of money to made. It just isn't an interesting aspect of the game to roleplay when the average danger is "almost tripped over a slightly disheveled cobble stone."
    • In Pathfinder, making magic items don't take away XP, only takes Gold (Supposingly, in gems, exotic ingredients, and so: I don't allow crafting in the middle of nowhere, no matter how many gold are carrying the PCs).
    • Fourth Edition pretty much cuts out the middleman by making enchanting an item not so different from just going and buying it at Ye Olde Magick Item Shoppe in the first place -- the Enchant Magic Item ritual, available for 175 gp to anyone of level 4+ with the Ritual Caster feat (which wizards and clerics get for free) basically just serves to make the search for said establishment unnecessary by letting the ritualist turn the desired item's worth in components directly into the item itself (of his or her level or lower) over the course of a single hour. So in this edition at least a wizard can and probably did in fact do it in most cases.
  • so I have a weird observation - fighter type classes have to manage more than one or two stats than the casters, yet when you play them, are pretty much the most boring characters to play. At level one, a fighter can fight. At level one, a wizard can cast magic missile or something. At level ten, a warrior can...fight, fight harder in between occasional disarming or charging. Wizards can stun the entire room, sear enemies with fire, freeze them, turn them into harmless animals, paralyze them, throw them around the room, or identify how many so they can stun the entire room so the warrior doesn't even have to stun just one enemy. And at level twenty, a warrior is...doing the same thing. As a result, most people I see don't play a warrior cause they're "boring" and the casters are the ones having all the fun anyways. Then when Book of Nine Swords and fourth edition try to remedy this and encourage people to want to pick a warrior, they complain and say they never needed anything other than charge...honestly, were any of the guys saying that even playing a warrior?!
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