Kendal

Best Version of DnD?

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3 and 3.5 suffered a bit from late 90's 'wall of text' syndrome. There was a relative lack of fluff mixed in, outside the examples.

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Well, 2e has been a literal wall of text from what I've seen. It's just that for all the esoteric and clandestine systems that are contained within there's little delicious morsels sprinkled about. The fact that the 2e version of the Bane weapons actually includes one that's essentially Wizard Bane, in that it gets its bonus vs anything that casts spells or was summone by a spell is pretty sweet. 3.x didn't have that as an example of a Bane that I can remember. And the Sword of Wounding, that inflicts damage that magic and rapid regeneration can't heal, but that can only be healed through extended rest.

 

The Scarab vs Golems is really the kind of magic item I like to give out. It's unique, it's not useful all the time, but when it is useful it's pretty dang useful. Especially when I'm the DM, because I'll make sure that it never gets forgotten by making sure you get some use out of it.

 

Murlynd's Spoon is like the most awesome version of a Ring of Sustenance ever. I'd hand it out like candy just because I want to see my players recreate that scene in The Matrix where Neo is sitting down to eat in the real world for the first time. "It's a bio-synthetic blend of vitamins, minerals, and amino acids. Everything the body needs." "If you close your eyes it kinda feels like you're eating runny eggs." "Or a bowl of snot."

 

And the Horn of Bubbles just seems so deliciously evil...

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What really killed all those magic items in 3e was the player's ability to craft magic items without a whole lot of DM input.  Those cute and quirky items fell by the wayside as players were able to opt for things that actually functioned on a reliable basis or that provided a meaningful advantage.

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Next week's Tuesday game will finish off Raven's Reef - they missed their chance to stop one of the two big bads - now to see if they can keep most of the townsfolk alive when all the **** hits the fan.

 

Last week they found the old blind hermit first making a (very intricate) model of the ship that had wrecked earlier - and then again, saw him release the model into the ocean...

 

As it sailed out, the shipwreck came off of the rocks and slid into the ocean itself.

 

This week the church bell started ringing - enchanted to ring when a ship was in peril within a league, originally to allow villagers to rescue as many as they could, but now to tell them that the pickings are good, as a ship has gone down.

 

When the townsfolk and PCs got to the beach, they found an ancient wreck had grounded ashore - and a small horde of undead attacked the villager - but until the party started fighting them, they were leaving the PCs alone.

 

Afterward, the Magical Child in the party found a well built model of the ship that had grounded - and she has not yet told the others.

 

In three days time comes the New Moon, and the church bell will ring until it cracks, as two hundred years of wrecked ships come ashore....

 

Best bet for the party and most of the town to survive is to get them to the apple barn at an orchard run by a cidermacher (a dwarf - not all dwarfs like beer, you know.) A large, hexagonal stone building that the party thought was a fortified house when they first saw it. (Based on an apple barn that I saw in New York state, in the late sixties.)

 

Blind Lamie remembers how he lost his eyes, as the gulls and crows squabbled over him as he died, his ship lured onto the rocks by the false beacon light.

 

Died, but did not stay dead.

 

The Auld Grump - I wrote this adventure more than thirty years ago, and have never, in all that time, run the second part... Raven's Reef has always been run as a short campaign, not as the start of the campaign that I intended.

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Oh, and back to the initiative rolling, the way we make sure to reroll every round is that as DM I do a countdown starting with "anyone beat a 20? 20, 19, 18..." Until everyone has gone. Then we all roll and I start back up with "anyone beast a 20?"

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3 hours ago, TheAuldGrump said:

 not all dwarfs like beer, you know

Lies. Which isn't to say that we don't also like cider and other alcoholic beverages.

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13 hours ago, Club said:

Not quite that bad (usually), but the guys did detect an aura of evil magic off you; if the local lawman braces you off the bat for radiating evil, all sorts of rumors can happen, for example.

 

Look at it this way, a sword is treated the way a hunting rifle is, and a bane VS X sword is treated the way a full-auto capable rifle, or armor piercing ammo, is; explicitly a man-killing weapon.

I realize I'm being a bit pedantic here, but I feel obliged to point out that swords, regardless of magical properties, ARE explicitly man-killing weapons. They aren't designed for chopping wood, nor are they particularly effective for hunting game. The cruciform "knightly" sword, scimitar, falcata, rapier, cinquedea, etc. were all designed expressly for human-killing purposes.

 

And I'll risk Beekeepers by saying a hunting rifle in public, outside the context of hunting, should reasonably be considered a "man-killing" tool by most law enforcement. Not necessarily a tackle-you-immediately offense, but most LE should likely be on alert if they see such a thing being carried in a public park, and it wouldn't be weird if LE wanted to ask questions about it.

 

All that aside, and returning to a discussion of the rule itself, why would a human constable in a primarily human town be necessarily evil if he carried a human-bane club on his belt? And why is he less evil if it's an elf-bane club? Is it OK for humans to kill elves all willy-nilly? In a world like Forgotten Realms or Eberron, the presence of Red Wizards or Emerald Claw would make a human-bane weapon pretty sensible for a lot of human travellers. 

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2 hours ago, Sanael said:

I realize I'm being a bit pedantic here, but I feel obliged to point out that swords, regardless of magical properties, ARE explicitly man-killing weapons. They aren't designed for chopping wood, nor are they particularly effective for hunting game. The cruciform "knightly" sword, scimitar, falcata, rapier, cinquedea, etc. were all designed expressly for human-killing purposes.

 

And I'll risk Beekeepers by saying a hunting rifle in public, outside the context of hunting, should reasonably be considered a "man-killing" tool by most law enforcement. Not necessarily a tackle-you-immediately offense, but most LE should likely be on alert if they see such a thing being carried in a public park, and it wouldn't be weird if LE wanted to ask questions about it.

 

All that aside, and returning to a discussion of the rule itself, why would a human constable in a primarily human town be necessarily evil if he carried a human-bane club on his belt? And why is he less evil if it's an elf-bane club? Is it OK for humans to kill elves all willy-nilly? In a world like Forgotten Realms or Eberron, the presence of Red Wizards or Emerald Claw would make a human-bane weapon pretty sensible for a lot of human travellers. 

 

History tells us that in a great many Western Frontier towns, one did not wear guns openly; local law enforcement would make it clear that firearms would be handed over, locked up, and returned when one was preparing to leave town. Particularly in places where visitors and cowboys and such were known to cause trouble. It is this, among other factors, which led directly to the famous Shootout At The OK Corral; friction between out of town cowboys and the notoriously hardnosed Earps, who were Tombstone's law enforcement at the time. And yeah, I'm oversimplifying, but...

You play Boot Hill, you play GURPS Wild West, you play Aces & Eights... and certainly Reaper's wild west skirmish... you don't get this. Cowboys drink hard with guns in both holsters and belt loops fulla bullets, and Clint Eastwood apparently carries dynamite under that serape. Play the legend, not the history.

That being said, if I lived in a fantasy world with dragons and elves and creatures that look like treasure chests but suddenly try to eat your face, I'd carry something to chop with, be it to bed, breakfast, or the bathroom, much less on city streets!

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Me, I'd carry an axe - properly sized, with a head that can also serve as the handle of a walking stick.

 

With a proper stone, a good axe can be both a weapon and a tool.

 

Not to be confused with an axe designed to be just a weapon, I will take something that will see use every day over something that I will need only when killing.

 

The Auld Grump, I never wanted to be an adventurer! I always wanted to be a lumberjack! Leaping from tree to tree.... (I had a really good game last night - it leaves me in a silly mood for the rest of the week.)

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19 minutes ago, TheAuldGrump said:

Me, I'd carry an axe - properly sized, with a head that can also serve as the handle of a walking stick.

 

With a proper stone, a good axe can be both a weapon and a tool.

 

Not to be confused with an axe designed to be just a weapon, I will take something that will see use every day over something that I will need only when killing.

 

The Auld Grump, I never wanted to be an adventurer! I always wanted to be a lumberjack! Leaping from tree to tree.... (I had a really good game last night - it leaves me in a silly mood for the rest of the week.)


In nearly every campaign I have ever DM'd, there has been that one guy who simply did not understand the difference between a broadsword and a crowbar...

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"But it's an Adamantium rapier. That means I can cut through walls!"

 

"It means that stone is effectively the same consistency as earth. Here's a knitting needle; go dig me a man-sized hole in the lawn."

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Hey, Wolverine has no trouble cutting through walls with his claws, why should I have trouble cutting through a wall with my designed-for-poking rapier? Huh? Huh? Tell me that!

 

I've actually played a D&D game where there were cities that had "no weapons, no magic" laws on their books. Any time anyone came into town, it was through one of a handful of gates that were all manned by a rather large garrison of soldiers. To enter the city, they would strip search you, relieve you of your weapons, and clap a bracelet that generated a localized anti-magic field on you. Magic items were inventoried, and if you were a merchant there to sell, they would give you a receipt that you could present to buyers that listed what magic items you had available. Residents of the city were exempted from the rules after living there for a minimum period of time, and holy men were issued licenses and permits to practice their magic. People who broke the rules were executed by having their souls rendered into the arcane energies that powered stone golems, which would then be put to use as laborers.

 

Of course, it was a very rich capital city, and the king was a millenia old lich that was very nearly worshipped by the people because of the peace and prosperity he brought them throughout his reign. It was all a part of his plan to ascend to godhood, and, if that failed, to build an army of mindless golem soldiers with which to take over the world.

 

Even the churches liked the guy. Well, except for the church that thought undead were an abomination solely because they perverted the balance of life and death. But they weren't allowed to practice in his kingdom. All the others liked him though, since he was actually very benevolent in his rule and had been that way from the start.

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15 hours ago, Sanael said:

I realize I'm being a bit pedantic here, but I feel obliged to point out that swords, regardless of magical properties, ARE explicitly man-killing weapons. They aren't designed for chopping wood, nor are they particularly effective for hunting game. The cruciform "knightly" sword, scimitar, falcata, rapier, cinquedea, etc. were all designed expressly for human-killing purposes.

 

And I'll risk Beekeepers by saying a hunting rifle in public, outside the context of hunting, should reasonably be considered a "man-killing" tool by most law enforcement. Not necessarily a tackle-you-immediately offense, but most LE should likely be on alert if they see such a thing being carried in a public park, and it wouldn't be weird if LE wanted to ask questions about it.

 

All that aside, and returning to a discussion of the rule itself, why would a human constable in a primarily human town be necessarily evil if he carried a human-bane club on his belt? And why is he less evil if it's an elf-bane club? Is it OK for humans to kill elves all willy-nilly? In a world like Forgotten Realms or Eberron, the presence of Red Wizards or Emerald Claw would make a human-bane weapon pretty sensible for a lot of human travellers. 

 

Sure, in our history, swords are pure mankillers. However, your average D&D world has rats the size of medium dogs in your trash, and entire sapient species that may be effectively psychopathic (Goblins, orcs, bugbears, drow, giants.) It's effectively a deathworld; being armed with a serious weapon makes sense in a way it wouldn't outside of maybe an area of serious civil unrest in our world. The 'wild' west was actually pretty tame, outside some admittedly notable incidents and individuals.

 

Second, let me draw a parallel between having a bane weapon and poisoning your weapon. Both make it fare more lethal than it would otherwise be, in the 'scratch and you're dead' range.

 

if somebody is improperly transporting a hunting rifle, airsoft gun or even a replica, they need to be talked to, for safety's sake if nothing else. If somebody is found to have brasshead bullets, they need to be interrogated about what (who) they were planning to shoot with them.

 

-----

 

Look at Shadowrun. AK-97's and SMGs everywhere. Justified by the fact that there are devil rats (And later in the timeline, demon rats) ghouls, Shedem, bug spirits, and who knows what else IN THE URBAN ENVIRONMENT, and not well under control. In that context, a full-auto rifle could be considered a legitimate self-defense weapon.

Edited by Club

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17 hours ago, Sanael said:

All that aside, and returning to a discussion of the rule itself, why would a human constable in a primarily human town be necessarily evil if he carried a human-bane club on his belt? And why is he less evil if it's an elf-bane club? Is it OK for humans to kill elves all willy-nilly? In a world like Forgotten Realms or Eberron, the presence of Red Wizards or Emerald Claw would make a human-bane weapon pretty sensible for a lot of human travellers. 

 

Maybe I misinterpreted the original comment, but I thought they meant to say that, if someone cast Detect Evil at you, your weapon would give off an evil aura if it was a Bane weapon keyed to the Detect Evil caster's race.  So an elf would see a human carrying an elf-bane weapon as evil, whereas an orc or another human would not.

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2 hours ago, Club said:

if somebody is improperly transporting a hunting rifle, airsoft gun or even a replica, they need to be talked to, for safety's sake if nothing else. If somebody is found to have brasshead bullets, they need to be interrogated about what (who) they were planning to shoot with them.

 

I don't have any idea what a "brasshead bullet" might be. If you're talking about full metal jacketed bullets, they have somewhat* lower wounding potential than the average bullet used for hunting. The use of FMJ by armies is a result of Hague Convention rules on warfare, not some sort of "FMJ is better at killing; lets use that" thing.

 

* How much lower is a matter of some significant debate among shooters and probably beyond the scope of this discussion.

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