Post by geneweigel on Jul 26, 2022 13:48:20 GMT -5
Its difficult running the deities and getting a grand plan (or anti-plan) on the spur for cleric players especially if they want a new god. I usually just think of it in general all gods have multiple worlds to entertain and they have sections for each world whether "Chaotic" like just an outer planar location with drifting servitors swarming that gate for that specific world and "Lawful" would be a massive multiversal order that accounts for everything. Then I try to fit the specifics. Heh, I had the whole network of Odin laid out in 1987 and it looked terrible..
I've gone through phases when I tried to play BtB as much as possible, which I think is a good exercise. You find out what works through trial and error. When I learned that EGG didn't play AD&D "By the book" but was in constant playtest mode, it changed my view, and it made me much more open to house ruling things. From what I can remember for 1st edition AD&D, EGG did not use weapon vs. AC adjustments, training rules, dropped psionics, what else... weaponless combat? And then when the Dragon articles that ended up in Unearthed Arcana came out, it was obvious EGG wasn't just adding to the rules, but revising existing rules -- like by moving the paladin sub-class under the cavalier heading, altering the ranger, raising demi-human level limits, etc. What this means to me is that there isn't a "true" AD&D and there never was, even to EGG himself. I'll always go back to the core AD&D books for my font of inspiration, but I don't have any problems with making changes based on my own gaming experiences. I like the UA rules about minimum hit points, raising demi-human level limits for demi-humans who are single classed in a class they had the option to be multi-classed in, spell book rules, and some of the new spells, but I don't like new character generation method, weapon specialization, cavaliers, barbarians, or drow as playable races. I never felt like I had to accept all of UA into my personal campaign... I pick and choose what rules I like just as with the core three rule books.
In regards to deadliness, I've killed three player characters in my campaign in the past year and a half: Scott's paladin, Mark's halfling thief and Brian's paladin. The threat of death and failure has to be ever-present. It does make players sit up straighter when they realize you as the DM will them die, or let the dice fall as they may. Sometimes it requires killing a player character or two to get them into this psychological zone. But this must be balanced out with other considerations as well, such as how players simply don't have fun when their characters are constantly dying if not due to bad play. Good DMing is definitely a balancing act.
Last Edit: Jul 26, 2022 16:45:13 GMT -5 by GRWelsh
I went through that period of trying to learn the BtB rules. The big takeaways for me is that BtB is an illusion and what's there is a conflicting, incomplete mess. And playing as close to BtB as you can get isn't the most enjoyable game for me and the players I'm DMing for. But I do think that knowing the rules helps you make better decisions when ignoring things or adding house rules. For the style of gaming I like, the threat of death for the PCs has to be there.
Post by geneweigel on Jul 26, 2022 17:42:00 GMT -5
The post-modern rambling game can never truly be the early 1980's rambling game. We would go literally off the rails then there would have to be a retreat back to the rules. Rather than today where it has to be air tight to start with little alteration as you go. I think the rubberizing of the campaign might depend on how reactionary the players. If they are childish and barely interested do you burn them? I think that is why all the safety nets were put there in the first place.
Yeah, I think what players want and what their expectations are is part of the dynamic. So, a DM has to pick his battles, where he wants to hold firm and where he wants to compromise. There's nothing wrong with going totally old school and brutal as long as the expectations are properly set. By rubberizing, I assume you mean making the dangers less so to favor the players... That has been going on since the very beginning. In OD&D you were dead at 0 hit points, in AD&D the option was introduced to allow characters to survive at negative hit points until bleeding out and reaching -10. In OD&D, many of the class hit dice and hit points were lower than they later became in AD&D (fighters going from d8 to d10, etc.) and weapon damage became varied and often that was in favor of the players. In OD&D clerics couldn't cast spells at 1st level, but in AD&D they could and also got bonus spells from high wisdom. In OD&D it was roll six scores, 3d6, in order, but in AD&D more favorable character generation options were introduced, including the popular roll six scores, 4d6 but drop the lowest die, arrange in any order desired. We veteran players tend to scoff at newer editions for making the game less dangerous and more advantageous for player characters, but this has been going on since the beginning.
I like 1st edition AD&D the best due to nostalgia, and it speaks to me, I like the 'voice' EGG wrote it in, I like the quirkiness and advice and flavor of it, in spite of all of its flaws, and overall it just plays really well. 1st edition AD&D was the culmination of a very intense period of play testing throughout the 1970's resulting in the class options being for the most part very playable and balanced. It's a great game, but I can't claim that it is objectively better than any other edition, or that it is the most authentic. To me it is, but I admit that is subjective.
What do you guys think of this rule of thumb for cost to recharge magic items? Half the gp value of the magic item divided by maximum number of charges the item can have. Examples would be: 300 gp per charge for a staff of striking, or 125 gp per charge for a wand of magic detection. That may seem expensive for recharging, but it is far cheaper than paying for a new magic item outright. What should the time required by a caster to recharge the item? What exactly should the process be? Is it just casting spells into the item, or casting enchant an item first then the appropriate spell into the item, or a special ritual, or what? I just remembered that cartoon episode of DUNGEONS & DRAGONS when they got their magic items recharged (super charged?) at the Dragon's Graveyard. That was a pretty cool idea.
P. S. I'm also trying to find ways to get players to spend their money since they're finding a lot in this campaign which is primarily treasure-driven for XP!
Last Edit: Jul 28, 2022 18:53:36 GMT -5 by GRWelsh
I use one of two options, usually the one more player friendly. One is pretty much what you describe. The other. I charge for an enchant an item and then I use the level of the spell, or try to find a similar spell, and charge 100 GP/level per charge. If the item has multiple spell level capabilities I look at the highest level, but that’s usually not that bad because in many cases it would use more that one change, so I would divide the level cost by the number of charges used. I will also consider modifying by the relationship of the PC to and the greed of the charger.
Something I am getting stricter on is player actions while in melee, in particular healing or being healed. In last night's game the paladin wanted to use his lay on hands ability while in combat with a troll. I told him the lay on hands was an at-will ability and not a spell so could not be interrupted, however it would require him to physically lay his hands on his wounds to get the effect and he couldn't use his sword and shield while doing this. Other situations have involved the cleric trying to cast cure light wounds on other party members while they were in melee and he was either behind them or also in the melee. Characters have also tried to drink potions while in melee. How do you guys handle these situations?